The Canadian government found itself in a tough spot when Prime Minister Stephen Harper called an election right in the middle of Trans-Pacific Partnership talks, a hugely controversial international trade deal that’s so far been discussed in secret.
Past election rules would have made it difficult for the government to continue negotiations until a vote was held, since the “caretaker” phase of elections the government is now in prevent it from doing things like signing a deal that could result in an overhaul of the country’s copyright law.
So the government changed the rules.
For the first time, the Privy Council Office (PCO) released updated guidelines that describe how government officials should act during the caretaker period. Why now? Well, rather suspiciously, the document contains a section seemingly tailor-made to allow the government to continue trade negotiations during an election—and according to a representative from the PCO, the new guidelines were indeed crafted especially for this election, and for just the TPP.
A white Alabama police officer was caught on a secret recording discussing ways to kill a black man and cover it up, it was revealed Tuesday.
The 2013 incident was quietly settled out of court and ended with the officer keeping his job, according to legal documents and interviews with lawyers and officials involved in the case.
A NASA camera aboard the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite captured a unique view of the moon as it moved in front of the sunlit side of Earth last month. The series of test images shows the fully illuminated “dark side” of the moon that is never visible from Earth.
Mount Vernon Independent School District painted quotes on walls that include this: “It is impossible to govern a nation without God and the Bible,” attributed to George Washington, and this, “Within the covers of the Bible are the answers for all the problems men face,” attributed to Ronald Reagan. Both quotes are inaccurate, FFRF reports.
“The district cannot even fall back on the argument that these quotes have educational merit, given the many examples of misquotes, misattributions, and entirely fraudulent quotes displayed on its walls,” said FFRF’s staff attorney, Sam Grover, in a statement. “The district sets a poor example for its students if it cannot be bothered to fact check the messages it chooses to endorse.”
The FFRF sent the district a letter dated July 31 asking that the quotes be removed because they violate the Establishment Clause of the US Constitution.
“Courts have continually held that public school districts may not endorse religious messages, including text taken from the bible,” the letter reads. MVISD is a public school district and its schools should not be in the business of advancing Christianity by displaying bible quotes on district property.”
The letter continues, “When MVISD manipulates historical quotes by removing context and isolating lines that promote Christianity or religion in general, it violates the right of conscience of its students.”
The High Court recently overturned private copying exceptions introduced last year by the UK Government, once again outlawing the habits of millions of citizens. The Intellectual Property Office today explains that ripping a CD in iTunes is no longer permitted, and neither is backing up your computer if it contains copyrighted content.
After a hospital error, two pairs of Colombian identical twins were raised as two pairs of fraternal twins. This is the story of how they found one another — and of what happened next.
The new Drug Enforcement Administration chief has finally made it clear: Marijuana is safer than heroin.
DEA head Chuck Rosenberg told reporters Wednesday morning at the administration’s headquarters that “heroin is clearly more dangerous than marijuana,” clarifying a less definitive statement he made last week, when he said marijuana is “probably not” as dangerous as heroin. Rosenberg said cannabis is still “harmful and dangerous,” but that his original remarks should have been clearer.
In other news, scientists at NOAA have come to a consensus that the sky is in fact blue. US Senator James Inhofe (Oklahoma) disputed the blue-sky theory by opening a window during midnight legislative session of Congress.
Looking through the documents, you can see some real ridiculous and aggressive positions by the US on intellectual property. In particular, the US seems to push back against any attempt by other negotiating countries to allow for the punishment of those who abuse patents or copyrights. Every time the issue comes up, many other countries are on board, but the US (and sometimes Japan) is against.
One other thing that caught my eye. Throughout the enforcement part, other countries repeatedly propose the use of the word “predominantly” when it comes to things like destroying equipment used in the creation of infringing works. That is, there are proposals like “judicial authorities shall have the authority to order the forfeiture or destruction of materials and implements that have been predominantly used in the creation of pirated goods or counterfeit trademark goods.” The US repeatedly asks for the word “predominantly” to be removed from such sentences. In other words, while other countries recognize that you shouldn’t just go around destroying computers that maybe incidentally were used to infringe, the US wants to retain such a right.
…for most users that’s really a throw-your-machine-away kind of situation.
The child abuse controversy surrounding SirEdward Heath grew on Tuesday as it emerged that at least five police forces were running investigations into the late former prime minister.
Detectives in Wiltshire, London, Jersey, Kent and Hampshire are now known to be examining claims that the former Tory leader was a paedophile, including an allegation that he raped a 12-year-old boy.
As the breadth of police inquiries into Heath’s activities became apparent, a brothel-keeper was identified as the woman who triggered the latest in a series of controversies that have linked a high-profile establishment figure to alleged child abuse.
No-one is shocked. Edward Heath wasn’t the elephant in the room. That was Cyril Smith.
“You have never ever in your life experienced what you’re about to experience today. I’m just going to say: Sit back, put on your seatbelt. It’s going to be a fun ride. You will enjoy the experience and the ride, which is Donald Trump.”
Less than an hour ago over here in the Netherlands. At least 20 wounded.
update, another one:
Here’s a documentary about the bridge:
Our story starts in 1988, in the decade of greed.
Leonard Stern, a New York pet food mogul and real estate developer, decided to finance a series of documentaries about celebrity businessmen. He did a smart thing –for the first documentary, he chose Donald Trump, who was then riding his bestselling book “The Art of the Deal” and beloved by the media.
I was called in to write the piece after the filmmakers shot the footage. It was easy work, because they had remarkable stuff: Donald working with the mob in Atlantic City, intimidating tenants, hiring illegal immigrant labor, verbally assaulting his family and underlings, trying to move a Florida airport because jets flew directly over his home… the list goes on and on.
Perhaps most interesting from a political point of view, the filmmakers revealed Trump to be the opposite of a small-government conservative. He got his start with his father’s money and political connections, and he made money the same way his father did: on the backs of taxpayers.
But most upsetting to Trump was the film’s revelation that he hadn’t made as much money as he said he had. The producers were among the first to show that his financial empire was built on braggadocio… as recent reports show it to be to this day.
The revelations about Donald never seemed to end. There was so much for the filmmakers to learn about Trump — his exaggerations, distortions, near-criminal behavior and, most of all, his deepening financial disaster — that the documentary was three years in the making.
“Trump: What’s the Deal?” was never shown on television. Donald Trump went after Leonard Stern — in a big way. Lawyer’s letters. Threats of lawsuits. Personal attacks.
Stern decided he didn’t need the trouble and canceled the series. The producers finished the film. But no broadcaster would touch it. Trump had done his work.
Extraordinary events have taken place inside a Kabul courtroom this week. Back in May, a 10-year-old girl was raped inside a mosque in a remote Afghan village. The mullah responsible – Mohammad Amin – had asked three young girls to clean for him when he started behaving inappropriately. The girls made a run for it, only one of them tripped and fell in a stream. Amin dragged her back inside the mosque, where she was raped and left with serious injuries.According to Sharia Law, which the Mullah tried to rely on in court, rape is considered a form of adultery for which both parties are responsible. Amin’s defence lawyers argued that he should be sentenced to 100 lashes and then released – but that would have meant the girl also receiving the same punishment.However, Judge Mohammad Suliman Rasuli slammed Amin’s defence, pointing out that the victim “cannot commit adultery; she is a child. This is rape.” Instead, the judge sentenced Amin to 20 years in prison.Human rights campaigners have welcomed the judge’s stance on the case, especially after reports came to light alleging that the girl’s family had considered killing her because of the shame that had been brought upon the family. This practice – known as an ‘honour killing’ – is relatively common against rape victims in Afghanistan, where rape was not even a crime until a landmark law was brought in to eliminate violence against women and girls in 2009.
More money is spent on boob jobs and Viagra than on Alzheimers research. By 2040 the elderly will have perky tits, stiff cocks, and no fucking idea why!
Named for Buffett’s first wife, the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation is the third-largest family foundation in the country, behind only the Bill & Melinda Gates and Ford foundations. In 2013, the most recent year for which tax filings are available, it gave away almost half a billion dollars, largely to organizations dedicated to reproductive health. It barely maintains a website, studiously avoids press, and has about 20 people on staff. The foundation and Buffett didn’t respond to requests to comment for this article.
But in a January 2008 interview for a reproductive health oral history project that hasn’t previously been made public, Judith DeSarno, the Buffett Foundation’s former director for domestic programs, was candid about the foundation’s giving.
“Buffett alone will give more than all of the other foundations combined in reproductive health,” she said. “We already are this year, and that will continue.” DeSarno declined to comment for this article, other than to say, “I am incredibly proud of this work and the dramatic decrease in unintended pregnancies.”
In the past decade, the Buffett Foundation has become, by far, the most influential supporter of research on IUDs and expanding access to the contraceptive. “This is common-sense, positive work to help families meet their dreams and their needs in planning their pregnancies,” says Brandy Mitchell, a nurse practitioner who coordinates family planning at Denver Health, a state-run provider. “Why we have to rely on a donor to make this happen is beyond belief.”
Quietly, steadily, the Buffett family is funding the biggest shift in birth control in a generation. “For Warren, it’s economic. He thinks that unless women can control their fertility—and that it’s basically their right to control their fertility—that you are sort of wasting more than half of the brainpower in the United States,” DeSarno said about Buffett’s funding of reproductive health in the 2008 interview. “Well, not just the United States. Worldwide.”
I made four words bold. Don’t think for one millisecond that he’s doing this for altruistic reasons. His motives coinciding with your motives are not altruism. He’s doing it because he sees money being left on the table. The fact that this is a good thing? That is, to him, simply not a consideration in the equation. If this wasn’t a profitable move, he wouldn’t be doing it.
An experimental vaccine tested on thousands of people in Guinea who were exposed to Ebola has shown promising results, and could help end the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, according to interim results from a study published Friday in the Lancet.The rVSV-vectored Ebola vaccine had a 100 percent success rate in a clinical trial involving a total 7,651 people, according to a report on the vaccine published in the medical journal The Lancet on Friday.
Yes, wireless passwords can be written down and trivially passed along to others: we know network security shouldn’t end at the Wi-Fi login prompt. But there’s nothing like an operating system automating the practice of blabbing passphrases to strangers.
There’s so much wrong with this I don’t even know where to start. All a hacker needs to do to get on your corporate wifi is to be a friend on FaceBook? And Microsoft claims that they limit network access to the Internet only. So imagine the following simple scenario: you have a Friend over, and you want to allow him to print to your network printer (all these little ink-jets have wifi these days, right?) – in the past, you’d give him access to your wifi, and he would be able to print – there’s even options these days to give temporary access. That won’t work any more, since, as a FaceBook friend, he is already connected to your network. But hey, why won’t printing work? Damn!
And there’s more. Since I’m part of radicallyopensecurity.com I thought it would be interesting to find out more about this non-feature. So I type something in my address bar I haven’t typed in a long time: http://microsoft.com.
First hate: I get redirected to the dutch home page. Listen morans, if I wanted to visit the dutch page I would have typed “microsoft.NL”. At least the biggest screen real estate is taken up by what I’m looking for, a link to the Windows 10 update. So I click it. Nope, it’s actually a link to some advertising tracking network, and blocked by my ghostery plugin.
Really, Microsoft? You are incapable of counting clicks on your home page and need to hire an advertising network to do that for you? Are you THAT incompetent?
So forget it, I’m not going to find out how to upgrade that way. Luckily enough I have a colleague telling me about a Dutch tech site who has a direct link to the download page.
Which then offers me a choice between different editions, with names line “KN” and “N” and zero explanation what these are.
Sigh. I’d better get some coffee first.
If you’re low on funds for that big vacation, you could always ask to borrow money, make a Kickstarter campaign… or swindle a couple of Islamic State recruiters. It may not be the safest way to make money, but that’s what three girls from Chechnya, a Russian republic in southeastern Europe, did.
The Chechen girls are under investigation for fraud after they allegedly scammed ISIS members into giving them money on the pretense that they would use it to travel from their homeland to Syria. The ladies got aw