Friday 21st of June 2019

Recent Comments

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 21:46

There has never been a Donald Trump honeymoon. Nor any meaningful period of national unity under the 45th President's leadership. 

He is the most unpopular president in modern American history, with poll approval ratings consistently in the low-to-mid-40s. 

He has driven wedges between the United States and its two great neighbours, Canada and Mexico, and between the United States and its historic allies in Europe.

And yet, Mr Trump must be considered favoured to win re-election in 2020.

 

Read more:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-19/beating-donald-trumps-re-election-democrats-strategy/11221078

 

Gus: the only candidate that can topple Trump from his perch is not any of his "twins" on the Democrats side. Most of the Democratic candidates are on the same page as Trump in regard to war, social issues and the "economy", except Pete and Bernie.

We know that Bernie is "too socialistic", thus the only alternative would have to be Pete Buttilieg. Just give him the stick so he can a) ignore Trump and b) replace the Trumpo bombast with more humanitarian policies and c) do a far more unifying job that the rabid Donald. Pete is young and willing to give most people what they need. 

Trump would make mince meat of most of the other candidates, while he would have to be less clowny and more cautious when having to deal with opposing Pete in debates...

Hopefully Pete would also do what has to be done to protect the planet from global warming.

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 21:23
The ‘Boaty McBoatface’ team has published the first results from the craft’s maiden voyage, detailing a new warming mechanism in the Southern Ocean which may force a rewrite of current climate models.

This week, researchers published the first results from Boaty’s first expedition to the murky depths of the Southern Ocean where it travelled some 180 kilometers (111 miles) at a depth of 4,000 meters in 2017.

The plucky craft identified a previously unknown but frightening phenomenon whereby the increasingly intense winds blowing over the Southern Ocean exacerbate turbulence in the ice-cold waters below, churning up cold water from the ocean floor and warming it up with hotter currents closer to the surface.

 

Read more:

https://www.rt.com/news/462201-boaty-mcboatface-first-results/

 

 

 

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by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 21:20

The largest single donation to a UK university has been given to Oxford for a new institute that will study the ethics of artificial intelligence.

Stephen Schwarzman, a US private equity billionaire who has advised Republican presidents including Donald Trump, has given the university £150m. 

A new building for the study of humanities will house the institute. 

The UK government said it was a "globally significant" investment in Britain. 

Governments 'utterly unprepared'

At a time when universities face uncertainty over research funding because of Brexit, this is a major financial coup for the University of Oxford. 

Mr Schwarzman, the chief executive of the private equity firm Blackstone, is one of America's best known billionaires.

In the past, his lavish lifestyle as a Wall Street financier has attracted criticism, but more recently he has also become a major donor to education. 

Mr Schwarzman told the BBC he was giving the money to Oxford because artificial intelligence was the major issue of our age. 

"At the moment, most governments are utterly unprepared to deal with this, and why would they be, it's a different type of technology," he said.

 

Read more:

https://www.bbc.com/news/education-48681893

 

 

Read from top. Gus is in favour of AI taking over from the heartless politicians. There would be more chance of implementing equality and compassion, with far less corruption. 

 

See also:

http://www.yourdemocracy.net.au/drupal/node/30130

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 17:53

Investigators probing the downing of a Malaysia Airlines jet in eastern Ukraine in 2014 will present new evidence later on Wednesday. 

The Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is expected to name suspects and announce charges for the first time. 

Flight MH17 was flying from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it was shot down, killing all 298 on board. 

Investigators blame Russian-backed separatists who they say targeted the plane with a Russian-made missile.

The Boeing 777 crashed in rebel-held eastern Ukraine on 17 July 2014, at the height of the conflict between government troops and separatists.

Russia has denied any involvement and has maintained the missile was fired from Ukrainian-held territory.

Dutch investigators will hold a press conference at 13:00 local time (11:00 GMT) on Wednesday after briefing relatives of victims.

What will investigators say?

The JIT, which seeks to try the suspects under Dutch law, has previously said it had a "long list" of persons of interest and appealed for witness help.

On Friday, prosecutors announced the release of new findings, prompting widespread reports in Dutch media that suspects will be named.

Kateryna Zelenko, a spokeswoman for Ukraine's foreign ministry, told the Unian news agency on Tuesday that "as early as tomorrow the world will hear the names of the first four people suspected of involvement".

Ms Zelenko said Dutch prosecutors would then file the case in a Netherlands court. 

"The guilt of the four suspects must be proved first and foremost in court," the spokeswoman added.

Internet open source investigators Bellingcat are also due to release a new report into the crash. 

The Bellingcat team has already identified individuals it alleges may have been involved in the attack, including a military intelligence colonel in the rebel-held Donetsk area known as Khmuryi (gloomy), and a military intelligence official commanding Russian-backed separatists in Luhansk who went by the codename of Orion.

What is known about the crash? 

MH17 left Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport at 10:15 GMT on 17 July 2014 and was due to arrive at Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia the following day.

About four hours after take-off, the plane lost contact with air traffic control about 50km (30 miles) from the Russia-Ukraine border.

Read more:

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48685584

 

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by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 17:14

The United States continues to amass military forces in the vicinity of Iran, following tanker incidents near the Strait of Hormuz and the alleged threat that Iran poses to US forces operating in the Middle East.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, one of the architects of Washington’s hard-line policy on Iran, has relayed a message to Tehran that the death of a single US service member would trigger a military response, the Washington Post reports.

According to the broadsheet, one such message was sent during Pompeo’s emergency visit to Baghdad, after the White House picked up intelligence allegedly showing that Iran or its proxies were threatening US interests in the Middle East.

A person with knowledge of the situation was quoted as saying that Pentagon officials, including outgoing Acting Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan, have been "the ones putting the brakes" on hawks at the State Department and the White House.

 

Read more:

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201906191075951655-mike-pompeo-military-action-against-iran/

 

 

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by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 16:22

Iran paralysed

by Thierry Meyssan

The rise of tension in the Gulf is a dangerous game which could turn bloody at any moment. The unclaimed sabotage of the tankers could have been perpetrated by almost any of the parties, including the United States, who are well-versed in the use of false-flag operations. However, rational analysis shows that Teheran today is not at all in this state of mind.

The United States and the United Kingdom accuse Iran of the sabotage of six petrol tankers in the Gulf, without presenting the slightest proof except an indecipherable US video. According to the accusers, the video shows a craft of the Guardians of the Revolution recuperating an unexploded limpet-mine from the hull of one of the tankers, although the sailors themselves assured that their ship had been hit by a drone or a missile.


The Irano-US duel has changed its nature since the arrival of Donald Trump at the White House, in January 2017, but the Iranian reaction can only be understood in the context of the previous episodes and their reversals.


President George Bush did everything in his power to launch a war against Iran following that against Iraq. He intended to continue the systematic destruction of the State structures in the « Greater Middle East », as planned by the Rumsfeld/Cebrowski strategy. However, the Baker-Hamilton Commission (2006) prevented this first attempt. The US ruling class judged the return on its investments too slow for them to support an « Endless War ». A second attempt was foiled in 2007–2008 by the opposition of CentCom Commander, Admiral William Fallon, who had begun discussions with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad concerning the stabilisation of Iraq. Finally,vice-President Dick Cheney gave instructions to Israël to rent Georgian airports so that they could bomb Iran directly without having to refuel their planes in the air. But it was Russia that grounded the Israëli bombers in the first hours of the war in South Ossetia (August 2008).


On his arrival at the White House, Barack Obama attempted to continue the same strategy, but in a less brutal manner. Like Bush and Cheney, he was persuaded that action had to be taken rapidly to get hold of Iranian oil, since the resource was soon to become scarce on the world economy (the « peak oil » theory). Rather than launching a new war which the US public would not support, he increased the number of demonstrations intended to overthrow his Iranian counter-part (2009). Noting the failure of this « colour revolution » faced with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, he began discussions with Washington’s usual partners since the Khomeini Revolution, in other words the clan of Hachemi Rafsandjani (March 2013), and more particularly Cheikh Hassan Rohani, who had been the primary contact during the Iran-Contras affair. When Rohani was elected(2013), he immediately began State-to-State negotiations to share the Middle East between the Saudis and the Iranians, under cover of the struggle against nuclear proliferation. A treaty was negotiated in Switzerland in the presence of the great powers, but it was not signed until 2015. Iran regained the right to export its oil in order to kick-start its economy.


JPEG - 13.8 kb

The US video

Progressively, the relations between the two states normalised until Donald Trump became the US President (2017). His objective was completely different – the White House no longer believed that the US were about to run out of oil, but was persuaded, on the contrary, that there was too much of it on the market – the White House no longer pursued the imperial policy of its predecessors, but occupied itself solely with making money. Instead of organising US domination of the Middle East, it decided to limit its supply on the market in order to be able to maintain the price of crude oil at the level of US shale oil. The United States encouraged demonstrations against the politico-religious class (2017-18), then canceled the agreement on nuclear energy (2018).


Since that time, Iran seems paralysed. Unlike politicians, the religious leaders are rigid and are unable to question themselves. God, whom they represent on earth, can not contradict Himself. This is why, contrary to a widely-held idea, the Iranian theocracy is excellent at business, but weak at diplomacy.


Iran refuses all offers of negotiation with the United States, and is waiting desperately for the Democrats to regain power in Washington – a dangerous gamble insofar as Donald Trump may be re-elected for 4 more years, and the Iranian economy is currently on the brink of collapse.


This paralysis prevents Iran from planning the sort of provocation of which Washington and London are accusing it, particularly since attacks against Western interests would compromise their future relations with US Democrats.


Unexpectedly, the Trump method will not prevail in this case. Persian culture is one of miniatures. In particular, the Iranians are a people who are capable of enduring long periods of torment before they win.


Thierry Meyssan

Translation 

Pete Kimberley

 

Read more:

 

https://www.voltairenet.org/article206735.html

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 16:19
New Zealand’s immigration website deleted a fact sheet about Palestine from its website after it caused outrage for identifying Israel as Palestine on a map.

The government website published the map as part of a fact sheet about Palestinian immigrants in New Zealand, showing Israel highlighted in blue and marked as ‘Palestine’. The West Bank is not included in the highlighted area.

palestine

 

Read more:

https://www.rt.com/news/462157-new-zealand-israel-map/

 

I believe this was not a joke....

 

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 15:16

Thousands of fish have died on the New South Wales north coast after a council bowed to public pressure and opened a lagoon, sending a deadly wave of de-oxygenated water surging down a nearby creek

Key points:

  • Thousands of dead fish have washed up on the banks of Tallow Creek, south of Byron Bay
  • The incident occurred after Byron Shire Council removed a sand bank to open a lagoon 
  • Council said they were pressured by the community to open up the creek as it was causing flooding in the yards of neighbouring residents

 

A sand bank was removed from Tallow Creek, just south of Byron Bay, following complaints from nearby residents about flooding in their yards.

Local conservationist Dailan Pugh said as the water rushed out to sea, oxygen levels in the creek plummeted.

"Because there was no rain occurring in the catchment at the time, it was inevitable that what they were doing would result in a significant fish kill," he said.

"There were thousands of bream and flathead and whiting and mullet and eels dead on the banks and more in the water.

 

Read more:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-19/thousands-of-fish-killed-after-council-opens-lagoon-in-byron-bay/11223734

by Gus Leonisky on Wed, 2019-06-19 13:46

The decision to award a Queen’s birthday honour to a robot sex expert and former far right political candidate is facing a challenge, and is set to trigger broader scrutiny of the Australian honours system at a Senate estimates hearing.

Last week Prof Adrian Cheok, who advocates sex with robots, was made a member of the Order of Australia for “significant service to international education”.

Guardian Australia reported that Cheok has faced accusations of poor conduct towards his peers in the past. In 2017 he was accused in an open letter by organisers of an academic conference of using “aggressive, belittling” language towards another professor.

The Digital Games Research Association Australia chapter president, Brendan Keogh, says he intends to challenge Cheok’s award because of his conduct on social media.

“He’s not a worthy recipient due to his track record of abusive behaviour towards other academics in his field,” he said.

Keogh cited the incident in 2017 where conference organisers issued a formal apology after Cheok made personal attacks on Twitter against academics who had raised ethical concerns about his research.

Cheok also attracted controversy last year as an organiser of the international conference on advances in computer entertainment technology when he invited Steve Bannon, the former White House chief strategist and former executive chairman of the rightwing website Breitbart, to be a keynote speaker, the Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

 

Read more:

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/jun/19/queens-birthday-honour-for-robot-sex-expert-adrian-cheok-to-face-challenge

 

 

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