"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, January 28, 2019

Links - 28th January 2019 (1)

Michael Yon - "Noteworthy: Trump and Saudi Oil Prices
Countless journalists and others have dedicated substantial portions of the recent two years screaming that President Trump would start a war. All this time later -- we were all supposed be dead by now -- Trump has utterly failed at starting a war beyond Twitter. But now, the latest great hope for Trump starting a war rests on the brutal murder of a Saudi citizen by Saudi citizens almost certainly ordered by King Tut himself, probably while sitting in a gold jacuzzi with Stoney Daniels or whatever her name is. The murder occurred at the Saudi Embassy in Turkey.
Once more:
1) Saudi citizen murdered
2) Murdered by Saudi citizens
3) In Turkey ...
now a substantial number of people who have been screaming that Trump is Hitler and will get us into war, want Trump to start a war for a:
1) Non-US citizen
2) Killed by non-US citizens
3) In Turkey (Embassy territory is territory of host country but with broad protections)...
those same people who scream about US interference around the world, and who claim to sleep under their beds for fear from Trump, demand that Trump interfere in a matter that should be between Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Saudi people, and the 'world' community... America is not someone else's virtue signaling attack dog, and Saudi Arabia is not the only contact on the radar screen. We got Iran. North Korea. China. Russia...long list. You can't play a big card without playing the whole hand."
Trump condemns Pakistan for supporting terrorism and everyone bashes him for alienating an ally. Even though they were such a good ally Osama was living 1.3km from a Pakistani military compound and Obama didn't tell the Pakistanis before the assassination.
Trump doesn't blame Saudi Arabia for Khashoggi and everyone savages him for being corrupt. Even though Obama also coddled the Saudis.

Opinion | Trump Is Crude. But He’s Right About Saudi Arabia. - The New York Times - "every president since Harry Truman has aligned with unsavory Middle Eastern rulers in the service of national interests. The difference here is that Mr. Trump seemed unapologetic about this state of affairs with only a passing nod to the affront to our values that Mr. Khashoggi’s murder represents. That’s nothing to cheer. But it is vitally important to evaluate the policy on its merits more than its mode of expression. And the truth is that on the big strategic questions, Mr. Trump is cleareyed and right... President Barack Obama, for example, helped sell his nuclear agreement with Iran by claiming that Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, had issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons. No bipartisan clutch of senators insisted that Mr. Obama’s claims clashed with the views of intelligence analysts, who possessed hard evidence of a nuclear weapons program. The true test of whether a presidential fiction is acceptable is whether the strategy it serves is sound. In Mr. Obama’s case, the answer was no, because his policy did not actually stop Iran’s nuclear program. It only delayed it, and, in the meantime, strengthened Iran without moderating Tehran’s fundamental anti-Americanism. But Mr. Trump understands the centrality of Riyadh in the effort to counter a rising Iran and he is rightly unwilling to allow the murder of Mr. Khashoggi to imperil that strategy."

Obama Didn’t Coddle the Saudis? Yes, He Did. - "Obama’s presidency had a distinct pattern: Obama would court the Saudis assiduously as part of his continued pursuit of the “war on terror”; they would blow up whenever he didn’t toe their preferred line precisely (say, by launching a war against Iran or blowing up Assad in Syria); and he would bend over backwards to win back their favor again.Obama Didn’t Coddle the Saudis? Yes, He Did. - "Obama’s presidency had a distinct pattern: Obama would court the Saudis assiduously as part of his continued pursuit of the “war on terror”; they would blow up whenever he didn’t toe their preferred line precisely (say, by launching a war against Iran or blowing up Assad in Syria); and he would bend over backwards to win back their favor again. If former Obama officials need a trip down memory lane to recall all of this, it’s fortunately all well-documented... The Saudi example is part of a pattern of behavior by prominent liberals and Democrats in the Trump era. It’s inconvenient that Trump, a man so widely regarded as odious and unfit for the eminence of the Oval Office, shares so many policy positions not just with the mainstream Washington establishment, but specifically with the Democrats’ favorite modern president."
Looks like Jacobin is now a Nazi stronghold too

The Meme Policeman - Posts - "It seems fashionable to paint the Pilgrims and Puritans as greedy invaders, set on seizing land and killing the natives, but this is not accurate. Modern historians specializing in this field give a much more favorable view of the early American settlers than many might think. The following are some interesting findings taken from Columbia University historian Alden Vaughan's scholarly work, New England Frontier: Puritans and Indians, 1620-1675:
-In the years before the Pilgrims arrived, the native population in New England was decimated by disease. By the time the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth in 1620, there were only 15-18,000 natives in ALL of New England, an extremely low population density.
-Virtually all land acquired by the Puritans was done by voluntary means. The Indian tribes were often more than willing to trade land, which they had more than they could ever use, for new tools like metal plows and knives. In fact, it was the Indian tribes who typically approached the settlers to sell land. The Puritans were warmly welcomed into the Connecticut Valley, as the local natives wanted protection from their enemy, the Pequot Tribe.
-The Puritans actually believed the Indians to be WHITE. They thought they were one of the 10 lost tribes of Israel, and their darker skin was a result of the sun and the harsh elements, not of a different race. While they thought themselves to be culturally superior, they didn't view themselves as racially superior. Most saw their purpose as integrating and converting the Indians to adopt their customs. Not to conquer or slaughter them.
-Puritans invited and encouraged the natives to attend their schools, both grade school and higher learning. The 1650 charter of Harvard declared its mission "the education of the English and Indian youth"...
-Puritan courts generally decided in favor of the Indians during land disputes. The historical records show a much fairer system than most would think today in settling disputes and crimes.
-Like every society, the Puritans were complex, imperfect and indeed committed atrocities. In particular, the Mystic Fort massacre during the Pequot War, where hundreds of Pequot tribal members, including women and children, were surrounded and killed. However, the lead up to this conflict was nuanced, with both sides bearing responsibility. Additionally, the Mohegan tribe joined the Puritans in fighting the Pequots during the war.
The real history of the early settlers is much more complex (and interesting) than the standard Thanksgiving fairy tale or the more contemporary notion that they were greedy, bloodthirsty, genocidal invaders"

New poll finds 9 in 10 Native Americans aren’t offended by Redskins name - The Washington Post - "Nine in 10 Native Americans say they are not offended by the Washington Redskins name, according to a new Washington Post poll that shows how few ordinary Indians have been persuaded by a national movement to change the football team’s moniker. The survey of 504 people across every state and the District reveals that the minds of Native Americans have remained unchanged since a 2004 poll by the Annenberg Public Policy Center found the same result. Responses to The Post’s questions about the issue were broadly consistent regardless of age, income, education, political party or proximity to reservations... more than 7 in 10 said they did not feel the word “Redskin” was disrespectful to Indians. An even higher number — 8 in 10 — said they would not be offended if a non-native called them that name. The results — immediately celebrated by team owner Daniel Snyder and denounced by prominent Native American leaders — could make it that much harder for anti-name activists to pressure Redskins officials, who are already using the poll as further justification to retain the moniker... Activists, however, have argued that the billionaire must act if even a small minority of Indians are insulted by the term... Few objected to the name, and some voiced admiration. “I’m proud of being Native American and of the Redskins,” said Barbara Bruce, a Chippewa teacher who has lived on a North Dakota reservation most of her life. “I’m not ashamed of that at all. I like that name.”... The general public appears to object more strongly to the name than Indians do."... Those interviewed highlighted again and again other challenges to their communities that they consider much more urgent than an NFL team’s name: substandard schools, substance abuse, unemployment. “Let’s start taking care of our people and quit worrying about names like Washington Redskins,” said Randy Whitworth, 58, who lives on the Flathead Indian Reservation in Montana."
The loudest voices aren't the most representative, and those claiming offence on behalf of an entire community (even if they may come from it) aren't necessarily right even about their claims of representation (to say nothing of arbitrating offensiveness)

What’s up with all those black men who voted for the Republican in the Georgia governor’s race? - The Washington Post - "White female voters in Georgia showed little interest in helping black women fulfill their dream of electing Stacey Abrams as governor, which would have made her the first African American woman to head a state in the nation’s history... Black men voted for Kemp at a higher rate than black women, according to exit polling, a data point that drew gasps and rebuke on social media and news commentary.
Talk about entitlement; if black people are supposed to vote for black people, why complain when white people vote for white people?
In the comments: someone claiming a non-negligible vote from black men for the Republican means there was vote rigging

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Online "Sex Workers" Are Scrambling To Cover Their Tracks After Being Mass Reported To IRS For Not Paying Taxes - "Women who use social media apps, like Snapchat, to make money by selling “services” such as private video sessions, nude pictures, used undergarments and more are being targeted by a group of individuals who apparently disagree with their “unethical and hypocritical” behavior. Many members of the “Thot Crusade” believe these particular women who actively avoid the IRS virtue signal about socialist, communist, and marxist ideologies. They seem to support free healthcare, education and other similar programs while also collecting welfare and not paying their taxes! Additionally, some of these sex workers have been seen flaunting their newfound wealth on Instagram, including posting pictures of luxury vehicles, clothing, purses and jewelry."

Asylum seeker 'schoolboy' is grown man, Home Office concludes - "A Home Office investigation has found that an adult asylum seeker posed as a schoolboy and was placed in a classroom of 15-year-olds.A new inquiry has been launched to try to establish how the man, described by pupils as looking 30 years old, managed to spend six weeks as a Year 11 pupil at Stoke High School in Ipswich, Suffolk.The former pupil, originally from the Middle East, now faces being deported after the official report established he was over 18... Other pictures apparently from the man’s Facebook account showed him with a moustache, facial stubble and drinking from a bottle of beer. Some parents were so concerned that they removed their children from school. The scandal prompted the school to remove the man, believed to be 6ft 1ins tall... "In the absence of clear and credible documentary evidence, Home Office staff must rely on physical appearance and demeanour to make an initial assessment on whether a person claiming to be a child is under 18."

Parents 'dismissed as racist' by school when they complained about migrant posing as 15-year-old - "students began to speculate that the Iranian asylum seeker was brazenly lying about his age in order to get a free education, and indeed remain in the country. According to playground gossip, Siavash even confided to one contemporary that he was a married father of two who had decided to pose as a teenager because his academic qualifications weren’t recognised in the UK... The bizarre episode leaves the school, the Home Office, and other safeguarding authorities with serious questions to answer. It also serves to highlight the seemingly routine abuse of laws which are designed to safeguard vulnerable refugees, but in reality provide a gaping loophole for fraudsters to exploit... critics have long pointed out that those rules also create an incentive for adult migrants to simply destroy ID papers and pose as vulnerable children. Indeed, several of the young men who disembarked from the coaches in Croydon appeared to be square-jawed men in their 20s or 30s. Photos of them duly made the front pages. A backbench Tory MP, David Davies, then fuelled the controversy by first claiming that the new arrivals ‘don’t look like children to me’ and then sparking outrage on the political Left by calling for unaccompanied child refugees to be given dental examinations to confirm their true age. Such a procedure had, he pointed out, recently been introduced in Norway, where it was then revealed that nine out of ten of those tested were over 18. Yet for suggesting that Britain ought to follow the example of the Scandinavian bastion of liberalism, Davies was likened to Hitler. Once the controversy in Croydon died down, the Home Office did eventually decide to tighten its procedures, however. Over the following year, it raised 705 age disputes related to unaccompanied child asylum seekers. Of the 618 resolved, 402 (65 per cent) claimants were found to be over 18 and just 216 (35 per cent) were found to be children"
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