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More adventurous than the average bear

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Friday, August 19, 2016

Links - 19th August 2016

Turkey's Erdogan - No Muslim family should engage in birth control - "No Muslim family should engage in birth control or family planning, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday, calling again on pious Muslims to have more children... Women's groups and opposition politicians have criticised Erdogan, a devout Muslim for telling women how many children to have and dismissing the Western idea of gender equality. He has previously equated birth control with treason."

Russian guard service reverts to typewriters after NSA leaks - "Each typewriter creates a unique "handwriting", allowing its source to be traced"
The Singapore Civil Service needs to do this - not just cut off the internet

Coincidence? For Months Lena Dunham Knew 'Barry One' Was Under Suspicion - And Said Nothing - "What we do know is that Random House, Lena Dunham, and her legions of high-powered representatives knew that the memoir they were responsible for plucked an innocent family man out of obscurity and held him up to the world as Lena Dunham’s rapist — and they said nothing until the media piled on and a lawsuit loomed."

Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's - "The pair visited the annual food convention in Houten in The Netherlands, where they asked unwitting gastronomic experts to taste samples of McDonald’s food and offer their opinions on this “new, organic alternative to fast food”. “Delicious”, “fresh”, “tasty” and ”firm” are just some of the adjective used by the food critics in a video posted on YouTube. "“It’s nice and firm, it has a good bite,” says one. Another adds: “It rolls around the tongue nicely; if it were wine I’d say it’s fine. The foodies were then cajoled into making a direct comparison with McDonald's. Asked how the “organic” fare shapes up in comparison to the fast food giant, one individual says: “It’s definitely a lot tastier than McDonald's, you can just tell this is a lot more pure.””

Why Leftists Make Kids Say 'F***' to Push Their Agenda - "The new YouTube video from these intellectual heavyweights features a series of increasingly annoying children screaming vulgarities about Trump. “Republicans use offensive words,” says one grinning, braces-wearing boy. “So here’s a few of our own: ‘F*** you racist f***!’” A young girl then appears, shouting, “When you say Mexican immigrants are rapists, murderers and drug dealers, you know it’s racist code for words like: spics, wetbacks and beaners.” One of the kids screams, “If you don’t like our Constitution and what it stands for, get the f*** out of my country!” This isn’t an uncommon tactic on the left: just last year, released a YouTube video with a set of cursing brats screeching false slogans about feminism between bouts of f-word diarrhea. These princess-dressed drunken sailors caterwauled, “Women are paid 23 percent less than men for the exact same f***ing work…My aspirations in life should not be worrying about the shape of my ass.” It is necessary to note here that these children – all of them – are reading from either cue cards or teleprompters. There is nothing spontaneous about these videos; the children do not suffer from a rare form of Tourette’s Syndrome. Their parents used them to push their agenda, and the children, being children, complied... children are a tool to be utilized in the battle against traditional moral standards. That’s why the left is so blasé about using cursing children to push its agenda. Childhood innocence isn’t something to be protected – it’s something to be exploited"

The four policy reasons why I support Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Primary. - "I think Clinton’s policy agenda is superior to Sanders’s for four main reasons:
Clinton’s agenda pushes the boundaries of the possible, making measurable change more likely.
Clinton’s proposals do a far better job of confronting trade-offs and setting priorities.
Clinton’s policies are rooted in evidence and data, even when the more popular position might have been otherwise.
Clinton’s ideas are based on building and improving, ensuring that risks to the most vulnerable and disadvantaged are minimized.
Just as it isn’t enough for a policy to be merely better than the Republican alternative, it also isn’t necessarily the case that the furthest-left policy is the most progressive. Policy is the means to an end, not the end itself... as the President of the United States, always going for the moon shot has real opportunity costs.... The Sanders plan has the luxury of not prioritizing because he fails to acknowledge any real constraints."

Series of studies first to examine acupuncture's mechanisms of action - "In a series of studies at Georgetown University Medical Center (GUMC), researchers are demonstrating how acupuncture can significantly reduce the stress hormone response in an animal model of chronic stress."

The Real Reason College Tuition Costs So Much - - "public investment in higher education in America is vastly larger today, in inflation-adjusted dollars, than it was during the supposed golden age of public funding in the 1960s. Such spending has increased at a much faster rate than government spending in general. For example, the military’s budget is about 1.8 times higher today than it was in 1960, while legislative appropriations to higher education are more than 10 times higher. In other words, far from being caused by funding cuts, the astonishing rise in college tuition correlates closely with a huge increase in public subsidies for higher education"

Phone scammers cheat elderly woman out of $100,000 - "Ways to protect yourself from scammers
•Ignore the calls. Scammers may use Caller ID spoofing technology to mask the actual phone number and display a different one. Calls that appear to be from a local number may not be so. If you receive a suspicious call from a local number, hang up, wait five minutes, then call the number back to check the validity of the request.
•Ignore instructions to remit or transfer money. No government agency will inform you to make a payment through a call, especially if it is to a third party's bank account."
Don't tell people to protect themselves against scammers. Tell scammers to stop scamming people` - "Apparently one user tried submitting a video online to Traffic Police and got this reply. Government disconnecting themselves from the internet will bring the whole reporting system back to 10 years ago. Where we need to save any electronic data into flash drives or burn a VCD then drive down and physically hand it over."
Smart nation!

CAIR: Supporters of Gun Control Bill Are Anti-Muslim
Gun control is Islamophobic!

Singaporean police accused of abusing their powers - "Despite their past experiences, both Ms Teo and Mr Ngerng were surprised when the police announced their homes would be searched and their electronic devices seized. "Before I was brought home, I saw Soh Lung's lawyer at the waiting area and tried to speak to her to know my rights. When the police did not allow me to, I felt lost and did not know my rights and as such, gave up resisting," Mr Ngerng said. The police seized his laptop, hard drives, memory cards and mobile phone. No warrants were produced during the process. Apart from Ms Teo and Mr Ngerng, the editor and publisher of The Independent Singapore were also questioned. Their homes and offices were also searched, and their electronic devices seized. "These investigations have brought to light how much power the police have," said Kokila Annamalai, an organiser of a forum this month examining due process in Singapore. "They don't need a warrant to search property, seize communication devices, and confiscate data, as long as the alleged offence is arrestable. These are very strong measures, with strong potential to intimidate."... The matter of early access to legal counsel has stirred the normally reserved Law Society of Singapore. "The practical application of 'reasonable' is fraught with ambiguity. There is inherent elasticity in the idea," Thio Shen Yi, president of the Law Society, said at the beginning of the year. "We appreciate that we must balance the rights of the accused with the ability of the police to do their jobs effectively. On the other hand, an accused may be detained for days, or even weeks, without access to a lawyer. "We need to re-evaluate whether this is fair or desirable.""

Harbi - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - "According to three different sources on Islamic law—Shaybani’s Siyar: The Islamic Law of Nations by Majid Khadduri, Al-Hidayah, and Ibn Rushd’s The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer—the word harbi means “enemy". Drawing from the Siyar, Khadduri defines harbi as “a person belonging to the territory of war, equivalent to an alien in modern terminology, but may be regarded as an enemy as well since he was also in a state of war with the Muslims.” In War and Peace in the Law of Islam, Khadduri writes: It follows that the existence of a dar al-Harb is ultimately outlawed under the Islamic jural order; that the dar al-Islam is permanently under jihad obligation until the dar al-Harb is reduced to non-existence; and that any community accepting certain disabilities must submit to Islamic rule and reside in the dar al-Islam or be bound as clients to the Muslim community. The universality of Islam, in its all-embracing creed, is imposed on the believers as a continuous process of warfare, psychological and political if not strictly military."

The Decline and Fall of the English Major - - "They can assemble strings of jargon and generate clots of ventriloquistic syntax. They can meta-metastasize any thematic or ideological notion they happen upon. And they get good grades for doing just that. But as for writing clearly, simply, with attention and openness to their own thoughts and emotions and the world around them — no... A technical narrowness, the kind of specialization and theoretical emphasis you might find in a graduate course, has crept into the undergraduate curriculum. That narrowness sometimes reflects the tight focus of a professor’s research, but it can also reflect a persistent doubt about the humanistic enterprise. It often leaves undergraduates wondering, as I know from my conversations with them, just what they’ve been studying and why... One, the rush to make education pay off presupposes that only the most immediately applicable skills are worth acquiring (though that doesn’t explain the current popularity of political science). Two, the humanities often do a bad job of explaining why the humanities matter. And three, the humanities often do a bad job of teaching the humanities. You don’t have to choose only one of these explanations. All three apply."

Kit Siang sheds tears for Malaysia - "a state mufti could classify non-Muslims Malaysians as “kafir harbi” who could be slain. I further cry for Malaysia that the state mufti’s statement was made a day after the Islamic State (IS) released a new propaganda video where a Malaysian identified as Mohd Rafi Udin from Negri Sembilan warned that there would be “no peace” for police personnel in the Bukit Aman headquarters. He also urged IS supporters in Malaysia to employ whatever means necessary to kill non-believers - “Kill them wherever you meet them...if you have a car, hit them...Use your weapon and knives to stab them in the chest”. The state mufti’s statement has prompted the reaction, “IS is already in Malaysia”, among many Malaysians. My third cry for Malaysia is that the mufti’s statement was made as part of a high-level Umno/BN political conspiracy after the Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar by-elections to incite hatred and animosity among the diverse races and religions to accumulate political capital. It was spearheaded by the Umno propaganda mouthpiece, Utusan Malaysia, as if there is no rule of law in Malaysia and in utter contempt of six decades of nation-building efforts."

Meet 10 Britons who voted to leave the EU - "The present leaders have failed to address the have-nots, preferring to placate the haves. Visiting London in 2014 there were no signs of a recession. The city has alienated itself from the rest of England. It felt obscene. I have worked in mental health for 30 years. In that time I have observed that society is reflected in the people who access our services. The biggest issues are feeling connected, or rather disconnected, in society. The majority are probably the people who have the smallest voice, but who rely on others to advocate for them. How much energy and financial support is offered to EU nationals who are vulnerable, when our own are ignored? I haven’t seen any EU benefits to mental health at all. I’m struggling to understand what they’ve done."

Firm eyeing electric taxis woos drivers with fixed salary - "HDT Singapore Taxi, which intends to run a fleet of 100 made-in-China battery-operated cabs, could be the first to pay cabbies a salary. Besides the 140 or so owner-operated yellow-top cabs, the rest of Singapore's 28,000-plus taxis are owned by firms and rented out to cabbies. Rentals range from $100 a day for a Hyundai Sonata to $180 for a Mercedes-Benz E-class. Together with fuel, cabbies face overheads of $3,900 to $6,300 a month. The Straits Times understands that HDT - which is awaiting approval from the Land Transport Authority (LTA) to start its taxi business - is offering monthly salaries of between $1,800 and $3,800."

Pool bans all refugees after sex attack in Austria - "An Austrian swimming pool has temporarily banned all refugees after a 13-year-old girl was allegedly followed into a women’s changing room and sexually molested... It also follows a separate incident at a pool in Vienna late last year, where an asylum seeker from Iraq raped a 10-year-old boy in toilet. Twenty-year-old Amir A., who is married with a child of his own - told police at the time that it had been a "sexual emergency" when he attacked the schoolboy."

Univision exclusive on Omar Mateen’s secret gay life comes under fire - "the Los Angeles Times supplied additional data on the reliability of this man. “Investigators do not consider the man’s account credible, according to one senior law enforcement official with access to the investigation.” Titled “FBI investigators say they have found no evidence that Orlando shooter had gay lovers,” the Los Angeles Times article by Molly Hennessy-Fiske raises a number of questions about the media’s various accounts of Mateen’s social life"
If it sounds too good to be true (like UVA, Jackie and Rolling Stone)...
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