"Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Sultan of Johor are seen in a blue Proton Saga... "When asked whether there is any tension with the sultan, Dr Mahathir said: “No, I don’t see anything because I went to see him and he drove me to the airport. I don’t want to comment on the sultans because if I say anything that is not good then it’s not nice because he is the sultan”"

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Monday, September 17, 2018

Links - 17th September 2018 (2)

Trouble for bubble tea shops as San Francisco bans plastic straws - "For the hundreds of independent businesses that sell bubble tea, many of them immigrant-owned, finding a supply of the compostable bubble tea straws may be almost impossible... Whereas plastic straws cost 1 to 3 cents apiece, paper costs 7 to 19 and compostable plastic 7 to 20... Given the consumption rates of Boba Guys’ five locations, supplying San Francisco’s dedicated bubble tea shops may require straws on the magnitude of 30 million to 35 million — and that’s not including all the other cafes that serve iced tea with tapioca pearls. Because of the rush to order paper straws, Aardvark already has a long backlog. Jumbo straws from neither of the other two companies are on the market yet"
Maybe straw bans can be framed as racist

Men With Same-Sex Partners 28 Times More Likely to Get HIV - U.N. - "Men with same-sex sexual partners are 28 times more likely to contract HIV than their heterosexual counterparts despite a radical reduction in new infections among gay men in Western countries"
Of course this is framed as being due to homophobia
Lesbians are at relatively low risk of HIV. I guess this shows that lesbians aren't victims of homophobia and so aren't oppressed


Illegal Border Crossers Receive Meals That Meet Religious Needs While Homeless Go Hungry - "the cost to feed illegal border crossers has been increasing as food choices change from “macaroni and cheese” to meals that accommodate religious needs. The total cost of meals for illegal border crossers now exceeds $770,000 per year. The $770,000 price tag covered the temporary meals of roughly 10,000 individuals in the last 6 months.
Editors Note: There were over 26,000 border crossers in 2017 surpassing the total number of Syrian refugees accepted in 2016... Charles Adler vented his frustration with the process noting:”Fewer than 1% of more than 28,000 irregular asylum seekers have been removed from Canada so far. So Canada is as accessible to illegal entry as a #McDonalds Drive Thru. And our taxpayers pay for the Happy Meals. If this is government competence, what does incompetence look like?”... while asylum seekers receive aid, many of Canada’s homeless eat out of garbage bins and feel completely helpless. Canada’s homeless population could very well be in for even worse conditions, as they continue to face competition from the rapidly growing population of asylum seekers which use many of the same services traditionally used by the homeless population."

Your medical record is worth more to hackers than your credit card - "Your medical information is worth 10 times more than your credit card number on the black market... The data for sale includes names, birth dates, policy numbers, diagnosis codes and billing information. Fraudsters use this data to create fake IDs to buy medical equipment or drugs that can be resold, or they combine a patient number with a false provider number and file made-up claims with insurers, according to experts who have investigated cyber attacks on healthcare organizations. Medical identity theft is often not immediately identified by a patient or their provider, giving criminals years to milk such credentials. That makes medical data more valuable than credit cards, which tend to be quickly canceled by banks once fraud is detected"

Micab: 15,000 phantom bookings in June point to Grab - "After booking one of our cabs, then waiting as usual before canceling, our drivers will receive a call a few minutes later inviting them to a driver’s orientation for Grab

Angry groom publicly shames bride by playing video of her cheating with another man at wedding dinner

Toronto shooting rampage: New details emerge about gunman Faisal Hussain - "a law enforcement source told CBS News that Faisal Hussain visited Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) websites and may have expressed support for the terrorist group. They were looking into whether Hussain may have lived at one time in Afghanistan and possibly Pakistan... The assailant's family has said he suffered from psychosis and depression for years but they never imagined he would do such a thing... The mass shooting in Toronto's Greektown neighborhood stunned people in a normally safe city, already unsettled by an attack just three months ago when a man used a van to plow over pedestrians on a downtown sidewalk, killing 10 people and injuring 14 in an attack apparently aimed at women."
Yet liberals keep insisting that it's only mental illness when it's white, straight men

FUREY: Meet the spin doctor behind the Hussain family statement - "The man who has presented himself as the point of contact for the family of Faisal Hussain is a professional activist who has reportedly committed himself to “framing a new narrative of Muslims in Canada” and creating a “national political movement.” Shortly after the Ontario Special Investigations Unit revealed the identity of the Danforth shooter as 29-year-old Faisal Hussain, a news release was sent out to select media attributed to the “Hussain Family”... despite his familiarity with media, Hashim refused to answer questions from the Sun about the Hussain family and his connection with them, including how long he had known them and whether he reached out to them or vice versa... To date, no member of the Hussain family has spoken publicly or made any direct contact with media... Hashim would not clarify which family members contributed to the statement."

FATAH: Mentally ill? The media or the murderer? - "a Toronto Star investigative reporter went as far as to blame all men for the crime. Kenyon Wallace wrote, “why, many are inevitably asking, would someone do such a thing?” Then answering his own question Wallace determined, “In truth, we may never know.”... another male was digging for the truth as in facts, not a discourse in gender studies that would diminish Bin Laden, ISIS, al-Qaida and the Taliban responsibility for crimes against humanity and share it with all of us males as their partners in crime. In the meantime, Warmington reports that “files being reviewed by police include concern Hussain expressed “support” for a website that was “pro-ISIL” and his visits to Pakistan and Afghanistan. There are questions that remain unanswered – like which mosque Hussain attended, who scrubbed his social media presence and how it was that his name was withheld until the family issued their polished statement."

Boy, 13, charged with assault after 'firing Mcdonald's chip at woman with straw' - "The boy was then arrested despite his mother claiming he was aiming the chip at his friend. After months of prosecutors building up the case, the case was eventually dropped when he accepted a police caution. His friends, who are all aged 13, were also charged. One pleaded guilty, one was handed a caution and another is awaiting a trial. The boy’s mother said the whole case was a waste of time as her son had ‘actually thrown the straw wrapper at a friend’."

STUDY: Women Don’t Want to Date Vegetarian Men - "The study, “Eating Meat Makes You Sexy: Conformity to Dietary Gender Norms and Practices,” was published in the recent issue of Psychology of Men and Masculinity and was led by University of Padova researchers Susanna Timeo and Caterina Suitner... women rated vegetarian men as less attractive in all circumstances -- even when the woman was vegetarian herself."

Masculine Dads Raise Confident Daughters - WSJ - "A glance at the public figures felled in the #MeToo purges—not to mention Bill Clinton —should cure us of the idea that progressive politics incline men to better treatment of women. Masculinity, like femininity, is neither inherently good nor bad. Enormous damage can be inflicted by the sorts of malice we associate with girls: spreading rumors, convincing someone’s friends to turn against her, refusing to acknowledge someone purportedly beneath notice. Femininity and masculinity are manners of comportment and modi operandi; they are not codes of conduct. Men have used masculinity for acts of heroism and decency. That they have also applied it to despicable behavior says nothing of masculinity itself... There is something regrettable in the way our exclusive focus on boys and men lets young women off the hook. As if women bear no responsibility for their own behavior. As if they are too weak, too emotional, too foolish ever to take care of themselves. And that is the greatest disappointment of the #MeToo movement, that it has so spectacularly refused to insist that a woman not allow any man to treat her badly"

Google Emerges as Early Winner From Europe’s New Data Privacy Law - WSJ - "GDPR, the European Union’s new privacy law, is drawing advertising money toward Google’s online-ad services and away from competitors that are straining to show they’re complying with the sweeping regulation... That means the new law, the General Data Protection Regulation, is reinforcing—at least initially—the strength of the biggest online-ad players, led by Google and Facebook Inc.
In other words, regulatory burdens are better borne by big companies and can be anti-competitive

The Dark Side of the Enlightenment - WSJ - "the principal advances that today’s Enlightenment enthusiasts want to claim were “set in motion” much earlier. And it isn’t at all clear how helpful the Enlightenment was once it arrived... One such myth was Locke’s claim that the state was founded on a contract among free and equal individuals—a theory the Enlightenment’s critics understood to be both historically false and dangerous. While the theory did relatively little harm in tradition-bound Britain, it led to catastrophe in Europe. Imported into France by Rousseau, it quickly pulled down the monarchy and the state, producing a series of failed constitutions, the Reign of Terror and finally the Napoleonic Wars—all in the name of infallible and universal reason. Millions died as Napoleon’s armies sought to destroy and rebuild every government in Europe in accordance with the one correct political theory allowed by Enlightenment philosophy. Yet Napoleon was simply trying, in Mr. Brooks’s phrase, to “think things through from the ground up.”... Marx saw himself as promoting universal reason, extending the work of the French Revolution by insisting that the workers of the world stop (again in Mr. Brooks’s words) “deferring blindly to authority.” The “science” Marx developed “from the ground up” killed tens of millions in the 20th century."

Democracy Is Far From Dead - WSJ - "Viewed in broad historical terms, the democratic model continues to excel when measured against all the alternatives. Established democracies almost never go to war with each other, helping explain why the decades since World War II have been among the least violent in human history, at least when it comes to interstate war... The U.S. leads a coalition or loose alliance system of some 60 states that together account for roughly 70% of world military spending and a similar fraction of total world gross domestic product. Except in the Middle East, almost all these U.S. allies are democracies. Democracies have struggled with corruption, violent crime, poverty, populism, challenges from globalization, and other hard realities of modern life. Democracy does not change human nature. It does, however, generally put us in a much better position to address those problems peacefully. Witness South Korea, which impeached a president earlier this year but seems no worse for the wear. Or Brazil, dealing with similar political problems in an ugly yet still constitutional manner. Or India, where a strongman leader is nonetheless checked in some of his ambitions by a balance-of-powers system. Or the U.K., where Brexit, itself the result of a democratic choice, seems likely to cause only limited damage"

Americans' view of marijuana is rosy, and unscientific - "While studies have shown that cannabis can help quiet seizures in children with hard to treat epilepsy, quell the nausea and vomiting that can accompany chemotherapy and sooth nerve pain, there's no evidence that it can help with the vast majority of other medical conditions, Keyhani said. And yet, people think of it as a cure all, she added... nine percent of people become addicted to cannabis."

Portugal Dared to Cast Aside Austerity. It’s Having a Major Revival. - The New York Times
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