Showing posts from October 9, 2015

Harper's Relationship With the Jewish Defense League Is Disturbing

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[By his (murderous, terrorist, Islamophobic) friends shall you know him. All part of the Conservative "base." *RON*]
Tyler Levitan, Independent Jewish Voices - Canada, Huffington Post, 8 October 2015

With Canada's federal election less than two weeks away, I felt it important to address a highly topical matter: the Conservatives' close relations with the controversial Jewish Defense League (JDL).

The JDL was founded in the United States by the late Rabbi Meir Kahane in 1968. Kahane promoted the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians living in current day Israel, as well as the Occupied Palestinian Territory. Kahane's goal was to create a theocratic Jewish state encompassing the entirety of the land of Biblical Palestine.

Upon moving to current day Israel, Kahane founded the political party Kach, which has been closely linked to the JDL. Kach is considered a terrorist organization by numerous governments, including those of Canada, th…

The Pharma Jerk We All Hated Last Month Still Hasn’t Dropped the Price of That Drug

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[The title says it all. A smug, greedy, lying little creep. The corporatocracy in full bloom. *RON*]

—By Madison Pauly, Mother Jones, 8 October 2015

Two weeks ago, Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli promised to drop the price of Daraprim, a parasite-fighting drug, after raising it from $13.50 a tablet to $750 a tablet. But so far the price tag hasn't budged.

Shkreli, a former hedge fund manager who acquired Turing in August, first drew criticism after a USA Today article reported the 5,000 percent price hike. He then told ABC News in September that the company would "lower the price of Daraprim to a point that is more affordable and is able to allow the company to make a profit, but a very small profit."

Business Insider writes:
That hasn't happened yet. A 30-day, 30-pill supply of Daraprim would cost me $27,006 at my local pharmacy. That boils down to about $900 a pill, which includes the wholesale cost, along with spec…

Chinese 'ivory queen' charged with smuggling 706 elephant tusks

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[Sounds like they are actually having quite a run of arrests and much additional investigation. Yang Feng Glan, kingpin between east African poaching syndicates and Chinese buyers, accused in Tanzania of smuggling ivory worth £1.62m. Is it pure rapacity or is there a gene missing that creates a person of pure evil?

by David Smith, The Guardian, 8 October 2015 A Chinese woman dubbed the “ivory queen” for her alleged leadership of one of Africa’s biggest ivory smuggling rings has been captured and charged.

Yang Feng Glan is accused of smuggling 706 elephant tusks worth £1.62m from Tanzania to the far east. The Elephant Action League, a US-based campaign group, described her as “the most important ivory trafficker ever arrested in the country”.

Anti-austerity protests turn violent in Belgium

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[Around 100,000 people took part to protest new austerity policies. *RON*]
Marta Portocarrero, The Independent, 8 October 2015

Up to 100,000 people took to the streets on Wednesday in the Belgian capital Brussels, in order to protest against the austerity policies of right-wing Prime Minister Charles Michel.

In violent clashes, the police deployed a water cannon against protestors outside Brussels Nord train station.

The demonstration was part of a national day of protest against austerity policies and was organised by the Belgium’s three main trade unions - the Christian union ACV, the socialist union ABVV and the liberal ACLVB . The protests crossed the country’s linguistic divide.

Leader of Christian group adjusts incorrect doomsday prediction: 'Soon'

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[Chris McCann of the eBible fellowship admits it was ‘surprising’ the world did not end on 7 October but says they will ‘keep studying the Bible’ for clues. In 1956, Leon Festinger, the psychologist who invented the theory of cognitive dissonance, published a book called When Prophecy Fails, that focuses on the after-reactions of a group of Christian doomsday cultists after the end did not come: it is still a fascinating read. *RON*]

Adam Gabbatt, The Guardian, 9 October 2015 The leader of a Christian group who claimed that the world would end on Wednesday has admitted his prediction was “incorrect”.

Chris McCann, head of the eBible fellowship, warned that the planet would be destroyed “with fire” on 7 October. This did not happen.

“Since it is now 8 October it is now obvious that we were incorrect regarding the world’s ending on the 7th,” McCann said.

McCann originally told the Guardian that by Thursday the world would be “gone forever: annihila…

Fuck Ben Carson

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["You are now bearing witness to an arms race of stupid, because stupid is in such high demand from the GOP base at the present moment." The kind of world we'd be living in if any of the Republican candidates won does not even bear thinking about. *RON*]
By Drew Magary, Gentlemen's Quarterly, 8 October 2015

You know, the only thing more alarming than Donald Trump leading the Republican presidential field is the fact that Ben Carson is the guy right behind him. While establishment puds like Jeb! Bush and Marco Rubio can’t decide if they want to beat Trump or emulate him, the Good Doctor made it clear this week that he is not only willing to replicate Trump’s signature brand of hot-garbage-spewing, but he’ll say even DUMBER shit. Here is Carson from earlier in the week on the Oregon shooter:
"Not only would I probably not cooperate with him, I would not just stand there and let him shoot me. I would say, ‘Hey, guys, everybody…

Why is the US Aiding and Enabling Saudi Arabia’s Genocidal War in Yemen?

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[Whether you are talking about the US or Russia, in the end, realpolitik rules the day. "Yemen and its people are being offered up as a kind of sacrifice for Saudi Arabia’s and the Gulf Cooperation Council’s support for the nuclear arms deal with Iran.... After six months of war and the imposition of a naval blockade designed to starve the country into submission, 90% of Yemen’s population of more than 24 million are in urgent need of humanitarian aid. More than 6000 people, nearly 90% of which are civilians, are dead." *RON*]

by Michael Horton, Counterpunch, 8 October 2015

The humanitarian crisis in Yemen rivals the crisis in Syria. After six months of war and the imposition of a naval blockade designed to starve the country into submission, 90% of Yemen’s population of more than 24 million are in urgent need of humanitarian aid. More than 6000 people, nearly 90% of which are civilians, are dead and most of Yemen’s already limited infra…

One in three young Chinese men will die from smoking, study says

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[Hi again! :-) The smoking rate in Canada in 2014 was 18%. Being in Russia or Asia today is like being in North America in the 1940s. "Globally, tobacco kills up to half of its users, according to the World Health Organization." *RON*]

BBC News, 9 October 2015
A new study has warned that a third of all men currently under the age of 20 in China will eventually die prematurely if they do not give up smoking.

The research, published in The Lancet medical journal, says two-thirds of men in China now start to smoke before 20.

Around half of those men will die from the habit, it concludes.

The scientists conducted two nationwide studies, 15 years apart, covering hundreds of thousands of people.

In 2010, around one million people in China died from tobacco usage. But researchers say that if current trends continue, that will double to two million people - mostly men - dying every year by 2030, making it a "growing epidemic of premature death…