US's jurisdiction over Haiti
2 February 2023

Suspects in the murder of Jovenel Moïse, the imposed president of Haiti, were sent to the US for trial.

Can anyone explain to me how it is that the US has jurisdiction over a murder in Haiti?

UK foreign property owner requirements
2 February 2023

Despite the UK's new requirement for foreign entities that own UK property to state who the real owners are, loopholes allow some of those owners to continue to hide their identity.

German government sides with coal mine
2 February 2023

The German government, including the Green Party, chose the side of building a new coal mine. It needed thousands of uniformed thugs to defeat the 35,000 protesters who tried to block the conversion of a village into a coal mine.

Destroying a town for public purposes is sometimes legitimate. (All the inhabitants of that town were compensated and given time to move.) Four towns were inundated to make the Quabbin reservoir which brings rain water to the Boston metro area. But building additional fossil fuel facilities steers our future towards climate breakdown.

Thugs called over children walking to store
2 February 2023

Parents in a small town in Connecticut let their children, ages 7 and 9, walk a mile to a store. Someone freaked out and called the thug department. The parents now face criminal charges.

The black thugs that helped kill Tyre Nichols
2 February 2023

Memphis published the names of the black thugs that helped to kill Tyre Nichols, but concealed until this week the name of the white thug who was involved, and what role he played.

This could represent bigotry. The report seem also seems to try to cover up some aspects of the thugs' violence.

Speaking of bigotry, the article displays symbolic bigotry by capitalizing "black" but not "white". (To avoid endorsing bigotry, capitalize both words or neither one.) Normally I do not link to articles that do this, but I make exceptions for some articles that I consider particularly important, such as the first one.

It should not be surprising that blacks can absorb from white society the widespread ideas of bigotry against blacks.

Ideas for what could make for a real change in the violence of thugs against blacks.

UK voter IDs
2 February 2023

Supposedly UK voters can cope with the new voter-ID law by applying for special government identification, but only .5% of the people who would need one in order to vote have applied.

Huntington Park thugs kill amputee
2 February 2023

Thugs in Huntington Park, California, ran towards Anthony Lowe with guns drawn. He dropped off his wheelchair and tried to pull his body away from them, but he could not move very fast that way; then they shot him dead.

It appears they did not run their body cameras. That in itself is suspect. I've proposed automatic systems that will activate body cameras at the sound of a shot (or a taser) and will save the previous five minutes of video as well as subsequent video.

Rwandan journalist's suspicious death
2 February 2023

*"Suspicious death" of Rwandan journalist prompts calls for investigation.*

Urgent: stop corporate profiteering off of COVID vaccines
2 February 2023

US citizens: call on Congress to stop corporate profiteering off of COVID vaccines, by guaranteeing free access to all Americans.

Burmese military bombing villages
2 February 2023

The Burmese military rulers repeatedly bomb villages of civilians.

*[Burma] junta hit by western sanctions as "silent strikes" mark coup anniversary.*

US dairy policies
2 February 2023

*US dairy policies drive small farms to 'get big or get out' as monopolies get rich.*

Industrial concentration is the cause of a range of injustices and suffering. We need policies to break up those monopolies; any policy which does the opposite simply must be changed.

Twisty asylum restriction maze
2 February 2023

A twisty maze of regulations and restrictions -- in the US, in Mexico, and in other countries -- make it very difficult for anyone to exercise the right to request asylum in the US, even to follow the long and slow procedure the US imposes for doing so.

The "Title 42" system of making asylum-requester stay in Mexico runs into a problem since Mexico won't let them stay there.

An additional aspect of oppression in this system is the US requirement to use a snoop-phone app, "CBP One". Those programs are nonfree and typically malware. So are the operating systems of the snoop-phones themselves.

For governments to make them the only way to communicate with a government agency for some purpose is in itself unjust. So, for the same reason, are "web apps" that send substantial Javascript programs that users have to run in their own computers. Knowing the US government, I expect it abuses that power grossly when it gets the chance.

I'm sure most of the people compelled to run "CBP One" hardly care about that injustice, given the painfulness of their situations in general. But unlike those. this one tends to spread to non-refugees -- to everyone.

2 February 2023

Olympic games tend to spread permanent increases in surveillance and repression wherever they go. The next victim will be Paris.

I've urged the citizens of cities in more-or-less-free countries to defeat those cities' Olympic bids. In addition to repression and surveillance, they tend to crush poor people and especially homeless people, and transfer a lot of public money to big companies.

National debt
2 February 2023

Robert Reich: the growing national debt is mainly due letting the rich pay too little tax.

UK libel law used to suppress truth
2 February 2023

British libel law still lends itself to use by rich people to suppress truthful journalism. The fact that Russian oligarchs who are personally under UK sanctions are doing so is especially embarrassing, but it is just as bad when British plutocrats do it.

The Tories are planning to make this even worse. They are working to change thousands of laws all at once -- laws imposed by the EU to protect human rights and regulations to protect people's health. This includes changes that would make libel suits an even easier way for rich people to bury the truth.

Pebble Mine rejected
1 February 2023

The EPA rejected the Pebble Mine and thus protected Bristol Bay, Alaska.

Breaking up military-industrial complex
1 February 2023

A former member of the US military-industrial complex calls for help in breaking it up.

Jailed for dancing
1 February 2023

*Iranian couple filmed dancing in Tehran are jailed for 10 years.*

Flaw with the term "gender-affirming surgery"
1 February 2023

The term "gender-affirming surgery" has a serious flaw as a way of defining a category of surgical operations: it is subjective, not objective. Specifically, it is stated in terms of what someone (presumably the patient) thinks about the operation, not in terms of what the operation concretely does.

One patient might say, "I see this operation as affirming my gender, so I want to have it." Another patient might say, of the same operation, "This would go against gender, so I don't want it."

We need an objective way to define and refer to this class of operations, one independent of whether a given patient wants such an operation or not.

Israel attacks Iran
1 February 2023

Drones were used to attack some sort of building or base in Iran. US officials said that Israel carried out the attack.

We don't know what that target is, or what it does, or what purpose it serves. However, this is likely to provoke war with Iran.

Replacing concrete and steel
1 February 2023

Replacing concrete and steel in construction with sophisticated spiral plywood can reduce CO2 emissions by 40%, because the carbon in the wood never gets converted to CO2.

It can even be fireproof in temperatures that would melt steel.

Dementia home care in UK systematically skimping
1 February 2023

Agencies that send workers to visit demented people at home in the UK have been systematically skimping.

The term "agency" might suggest that this is a state agency, but I suspect that it refers in this case to a profit making business. Can anyone tell me for a fact whether that is so?

If this is a business, I suspect it is making money hand over fist, paying its workers a pittance and charging patients' families for work not done. But I find it hard to believe that the workers initiated the practice and hide the fraud from their employer. I can't help suspecting that the business taught its workers to engage in fraud, and that the state knows about it but looks the other way.

Contraception vending machines
1 February 2023

Some US universities have set up vending machines to sell emergency contraception.

(Satire) ChatGPT bar exam
1 February 2023

(satire) *ChatGPT Forced To Take Bar Exam Even Though Dream Was To Be AI Art Bot.*

If an Onion page appears blank, try disabling Javascript entirely or telling LibreJS to blacklist all scripts in the page, then right-click and select item "Reveal hidden HTML". Or use a browser such as lynx that doesn't implement Javascript and CSS.

Criminalizing anything irregular
1 February 2023

The US has a leaning towards criminalizing anything irregular. A 29-year-old woman faces criminal charges for claiming to be a teenager so as to enroll in a public school, and presenting a false birth certificate to make that possible.

I can't understand this response -- wouldn't it be sufficient to disenroll her? None of the articles I have seen makes any attempt to justify or explain the harshness. Perhaps the reason is taboo.

US utilities shut off power to millions
1 February 2023

*US utilities shut off power to millions amid record corporate profits.*

It's the government's responsibility to prevent such harm. There are various ways to do it. One way would be to increase the taxes those utilities (and other corporations) actually pay, and give some of that money to poor Americans.

Queensland stop-and-search
1 February 2023

Queensland proposes to legalize stop-and-search with no specific suspicion.

In the US and in the UK, this is an invitation to racial profiling.

Urgent: Keep Ilhan Omar on the House Foreign Affairs Committee
31 January 2023

US citizens: call on Congress to keep Ilhan Omar on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Julian Assange rally
31 January 2023

The next rally for Julian Assange will be at the Park Street Station on Feb 11th from 11:30 to 12:30.

Solar and wind cheaper than coal
31 January 2023

*It is cheaper [in the US] to build solar panels or cluster of wind turbines and connect them to the grid than to keep operating coal plants.*

Protesters sentenced to death
31 January 2023

*Iranian protesters sentenced to death were tortured, says Amnesty report.*

In the 1980s, Iran's new (at that time) Islamic Republic used to treat trials as a pointless inconvenience. That tendency is still present.

Jamón ibérico
31 January 2023

Global heating threatens the production of jamón ibérico. The oak forests are producing fewer of the acorns that the pigs eat.

Eventually that forest may disappear, and its ecosystem.

Iraq marshlands drying
31 January 2023

Iraq's ancient marshlands, where the Tigris and Euphrates enter the Persian Gulf, are drying out and dying due to global heating with help from other causes.

Urgent: Challenge abortion bans that violate federal law
31 January 2023

US citizens: call on the Justice Department to challenge all state abortion bans that violate federal law. Urgent: Keep Ilhan Omar on the House Foreign Affairs Committee US citizens: call on Congress to keep Ilhan Omar on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Tory and NHS
31 January 2023

Years of Tory attacks against the NHS have made it very difficult for doctors to work there. Around 40% are planning to quit within the next 5 years.

UK anti-protest bill
31 January 2023

Hong Kong exiles in the UK called on the Tories not to follow China's example by criminalizing peaceful protest.

Homeless man attacked by thugs
31 January 2023

Two Florida thugs grabbed a homeless man (whom they may have recognized), handcuffed him, took him to an isolated place, and beat him unconscious.

There is no indication of a plausible motive for this attack.

The thugs have been arrested. Hooray!

Santos's fund-raising fraud
31 January 2023

Rep. Santos's fund-raising reports mention fund-raising supporters who don't seem to exist, nor do their addresses exist. There seems to be a criminal investigation into this.

The Republican Party has gone out of its way to demonstrate that it will tolerate any sort of crimes among its elected officials and supporters. But it may be powerless to stop Santos from bring convicted and imprisoned.

Tunisian protest
31 January 2023

Tunisians protested the president's diminution of the power of the voters by boycotting recent parliamentary elections.

Central banks handled inflation wrong
31 January 2023

Stiglitz: economic developments confirm that central banks have handled inflation wrong, based on a misguided model of what was causing it. The increases in interest rates were unnecessary treatment for the wrong disease.

Georgia seeks to define "Cop City" protests as terrorism
31 January 2023

*Georgia is seeking to define "Cop City" protests as terrorism, experts say.* In fact, these protests are generally peaceful.

Breaking windows as a protest is not peaceful, but it is not terrorism either. To stretch the definition of "terrorism" is the everpresent danger from officials that incline towards repression, as US officials often do.

Officials in other countries do it too.

Urgent: Ban facial recognition and other biometric technology in places of public accommodation
31 January 2023

US citizens: call for a ban on the use of facial recognition and other biometric technology in places of public accommodation.

US suffers from secrecy
31 January 2023

The US government suffers, in general, from too much secrecy, plus a double standard for enforcement of secrecy rules (important officials are treated with leniency).

The problem of oversecrecy was recognized decades ago, but it got much worse through overreaction to the Sep 2001 attacks. In general, the US reaction to those attacks has been quite harmful (most notably, attacking Iraq based on lies).

Whether to mark something as secret depends on a judgment call by some official. The structure of this tends to push officials towards oversecrecy. If they don't mark something secret, and later on it appears that publishing it may have caused some bad consequences, people will blame them. If they do mark something secret, and later on it appears that concealing it caused some bad consequences, no one will blame them. For their career safety, they mark it secret by default. Systematically, the result is oversecrecy.

Urgent: Ban members of Congress from buying and selling individual stocks
30 January 2023

US citizens: call on Congress to ban members of Congress from buying and selling individual stocks. The Capitol Switchboard numbers are +1-202-224-3121, +1-888-818-6641 and +1-888-355-3588.

If you phone, please spread the word!

Hotline for Putin forces to call and arrange surrender
30 January 2023

Ukraine has set up a hotline for Putin forces soldiers to call to discuss how to arrange to surrender.

"Moderate" Democrats are joining Republicans
30 January 2023

Plutocratist "moderate" Democrats are joining with Republicans (also plutocratist) to defeat progressive Democrats in Democratic primaries.

Biden on oil and gas drilling permits
30 January 2023

*Biden Outpaces [the wrecker] on Oil and Gas [drilling] Permits.*

Proposal to subcontract NHS medicine to private clinics
30 January 2023

Starmer proposes to subcontract NHS medicine to private clinics.

That is a recipe for a brain drain from NHS clinics to private clinics. Union Pacific spending on stock buybacks

*While blocking paid sick leave,
30 January 2023

Union Pacific [railroad] spent more on stock buybacks than [on] workers.*

(satire) Anonymous return of classified documents
30 January 2023

(satire) *Drop Box Outside National Archives Allows Ex-Presidents To Anonymously Return Classified Documents.*