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Links 30/04/2022: Xfce Software Update, Inform 7 Becomes Free Software

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Razer Lambda Tensorbook, the most powerful Linux laptop for Deep-learning

        The supply of devices and computers with an operating system based on Linux or Linux itself pre-installed is growing every day. Not only in computers with low performance, they are also beginning to be very present in high-end ones, made with a specific purpose.

        This is the case of the Razer X Lambda Tensorbook , a high-end laptop with great features that we are here to talk about today. This super powerful laptop is intended to be used for Deep Learning or Data Science.

        In fact, it is characterized by its Intel processor and dedicated graphics with an Nvidia GPU, all managed from an Ubuntu operating system.

      • GRAID SupremeRAID SR-1010: unleashes record-breaking 110GB/sec reads | TweakTown

        The huge 110GB/sec reads are also only in a Linux environment, and on a RAID 5, RAID 6, or RAID 10 array. If you are on a Windows environment then those super-fast read speeds drop rather significantly: 70GB/sec reads (versus 110GB/sec on Linux) and 35GB/sec reads (up from 25GB/sec on Linux).

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • HackadayHackaday Podcast 166: Engraving With The Sun, Explosive Welding, Juggling Chainsaws, And Torturing Wago Connectors

        Join Hackaday Editor-in-Chief Elliot Williams and Staff Writer Dan Maloney as they dive into the last week of Hackaday articles. If you love things that go boom, you won’t want to miss the discussion about explosive welding. Ever use the sun to burn something with a magnifying glass? Now you can CNC that, if you dare. We’ll take a quick trip through the darkroom and look at analog-digital photography as well as a tactical enlarger you can build, watch someone do terrible things to Wago and Wago-adjacent connectors, and talk about how suborbital chainsaws can be leveraged into a mass storage medium. Not enough for you? Then don’t miss our bafflement at one corporation’s attitude toward 3D printing, the secret sauce of resin casting, and our rundown of the 2022 Sci-Fi Contest winners.

    • Kernel Space

      • Graphics Stack

        • threads and libxcb, part 2

          I've been working on kopper recently, which is a complementary project to zink. Just as zink implements OpenGL in terms of Vulkan, kopper seeks to implement the GL window system bindings - like EGL and GLX - in terms of the Vulkan WSI extensions. There are several benefits to doing this, which I'll get into in a future post, but today's story is really about libX11 and libxcb.

          Yes, again.

          One important GLX feature is the ability to set the swap interval, which is how you get tear-free rendering by syncing buffer swaps to the vertical retrace. A swap interval of 1 is the typical case, where an image update happens once per frame. The Vulkan way to do this is to set the swapchain present mode to FIFO, since FIFO updates are implicitly synced to vblank. Mesa's WSI code for X11 uses a swapchain management thread for FIFO present modes. This thread is started from inside the vulkan driver, and it only uses libxcb to talk to the X server. But libGL is a libX11 client library, so in this scenario there is always an "xlib thread" as well.

          libX11 uses libxcb internally these days, because otherwise there would be no way to intermix xlib and xcb calls in the same process. But it does not use libxcb's reflection of the protocol, XGetGeometry does not call xcb_get_geometry for example. Instead, libxcb has an API to allow other code to take over the write side of the display socket, with a callback mechanism to get it back when another xcb client issues a request. The callback function libX11 uses here is straightforward: lock the Display, flush out any internally buffered requests, and return the sequence number of the last request written. Both libraries need this sequence number for various reasons internally, xcb for example uses it to make sure replies go back to the thread that issued the request.

    • Applications

      • Daniel StenbergUncurled

        The uncurled book is now in a state I think I can show off without feeling embarrassed. I believe I will still need to work on it more going forward to add and polish content and make it more coherent and less of a collection of snippets. I hope that I over time can settle down and gradually slow down the change pace. It will of course also depend a lot on the feedback I get.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Dan LangilleI forgot to enable compression on ZFS

        I forgot to enable compression on this FreshPorts node. I have no idea why/how.

        After doing this, I went to a directory with a lot of space and copied stuff around.

      • Jan Piet MensBack to the drawing board: Ansible training machines

        I avoid using the cloud in situations where it’s not really necessary which is why I had the “whole” infrastructure with me during Ansible trainings: no dependencies on the Internet not working at a customer site, firewall rules forbidding access to resources, etc.

      • uni TorontoThe practical problem with /etc/pam.d on long-lived Linux systems

        Yesterday I wrote about how a 20-second program startup delay turned out to be because of a stray line in an /etc/pam.d file. Unfortunately, things in /etc/pam.d are especially prone to this problem on systems that have been around for a long time and have been upgraded from version to version of their Linux. The short version of why is that there are too many things modifying /etc/pam.d files.

      • APNICHow NAT traversal works — NAT notes for nerds

        What follows is a somewhat miscellaneous set of tricks, which can help us out in specific situations. None of them will solve NAT traversal by itself, but by combining them judiciously, we can get incrementally closer to a 100% success rate.

      • APNICHow NAT traversal works — The nature of NATs

        We can think of Network Address Translation (NAT) devices as stateful firewalls with one more really annoying feature; in addition to all the stateful firewalling stuff, they also alter packets as they go through.

      • APNICHow NAT traversal works — Figuring out firewalls

        We at Tailscale covered a lot of ground in a post about how our VPN works. However, we glossed over how to get through Network Address Translators (NATs) and connect your devices directly to each other, no matter what’s standing between them. Let’s talk about that in this four-part series.

      • Data SwampWriting my first OpenBSD game using Godot

        I'm a huge fan of video games but never really thought about writing one. Well, this crossed my mind a few times, but I don't know anything about writing a GUI software or using OpenGL, but a few days ago I discovered the open source game engine Godot.

        This game engine is a full-featured tool allowing to easily write 2D or 3D games that are portables on Android, Mac, Windows, Linux, HTML5 (using WebASM) and operating systems where the Godot engine is available, like OpenBSD.

      • TecAdminHow to Change Default Display Manager in Ubuntu Desktop – TecAdmin

        All the Linux Desktop systems have a default display manager, which is responsible for user authentication and loading the desktop environment. Once the system start, the display manager starts the login screen, and after successful user authentication, it loads the desktop environment. It also controls the user session.

        gdm3, lightdm, and sddm are some popular display manager programs. gdm3 is the default for Gnome desktops, and sddm is the default used by KDE desktops. The lightdm is the lightweight cross-desktop display manager.

        This tutorial will help you to change the default display manager in your Ubuntu desktop system.

      • Ubuntu HandbookHow to Change Login Screen Background in Ubuntu 22.04 [Another Script] | UbuntuHandbook

        Want to change the background wallpaper or just set another color for Ubuntu Gnome login screen? Here’s how to do the trick in Ubuntu 22.04!

        As you may know, the GDM background is not easy to modify since GNOME hard-coded the CSS into a .gresource file. Some scripts has been created in github to deal with it, but so far there’s no universal one that works on all Linux (or even all Ubuntu) editions.

      • H2S MediaInstall VMware Workstation Player on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS - Linux Shout

        Get VirtualBox free alternative by installing Vmware workstation player on Ubuntu 22.04 Jammy JellyFish for running virtual machines.

        Vmware doesn’t need an introduction, it is already quite popular and well know software when it comes to running virtual machines. Although most of the software of Vmware are paid, Workstation Player is free for personal usage. Therefore, we can use it without paying anything.

        Well, Virtualization is a software technique that mimics hardware. In this way, it is possible, for example, to operate several virtual machines under Windows, on which other operating systems can then be installed.VMs are an alternative to dual boot: virtual machines share PC performance with the main operating system. Dual Boot, on the other hand, has multiple systems installed on their own partitions; the necessary changes to the partitioning carry the risk of data loss if done improperly, you do not have the problem with Virtual machines.

      • UNIX CopInstall SQLite on Debian 11 / Ubuntu 22.04

        Although the database industry is dominated on a large scale by solutions such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQL Server or Oracle, there are also alternatives for different projects. One of these solutions is SQLite. So, in this post, you will learn how to install SQLite on Debian / Ubuntu and take the first steps with this program.

      • H2S MediaInstall Avidemux on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Jammy Linux - Linux Shout

        earn the steps to install the Avidemux video editing program on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS Jammy JellyFish using the command terminal.

        Avidemux is open-source software that can be installed not only on Linux but also on Windows, OS X, and BSD. We can use this program for editing video files. Mainly the program is intended for cutting, cropping videos, and extracting audio tracks from video files hence it is not for professional video editors but instead for those who are looking for an easy-to-use and handy tool for quick video editing. It can also be used for converting videos from one to other formats. Thus, Avidemux understands numerous formats. Edits that you make to a file can be saved as a script and thus conveniently applied to a large number of other videos.

        The freeware allows the import of AVI, DivX, XviD, MPEG 1/2, MPEG 4, H263(+), MOV/3GP, OGM, as well as MP3, WMA, AAC, and WAV. Many other popular formats and codecs are also supported. Extensive manipulations can be carried out via numerous filters. It is included in the libavcodec collection of FFmpeg. The format is suitable as a permanent archive format for video data.

      • UNIX CopInstall Android SDK on CentOS 8

        Android Studio is an official Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for Android app development, based on IntelliJ IDEA. Despite of IntelliJ’s powerful code editor and developer tools, Android Studio offers even more features that enhance your productivity while building Android apps. In this tutorial we will learn How to Install Android SDK on CentOS 8.

      • How to install MySQL 8 on Ubuntu 22.04 - NextGenTips

        MySQL is an open-source relational database management system. Relational databases organize data into one or more data tables in which data types may be related to each other. Relations help structure data. MySQL has stand-alone clients that allow users to interact directly with a MySQL database using SQL.

        MySQL is part of the LAMP stack component which stands for Linux, Apache/Nginx, MySQL/MariaDB, and PHP/Python/Perl. In this tutorial, I will show you how to install MySQL 8 on Ubuntu 22.04.

      • Linux Shell TipsHow to Read/Print a Particular Line from a File in Linux

        File management is an important aspect of Linux administration. You get to access and manipulate different user and system files based on availed access right privileges.

        This article seeks to boost your Linux file management prowess by walking us through the steps needed to read/print a particular line from a file in Linux.

        There is more than one approach to achieving this article’s objective. We are going to break down these approaches one by one.

      • TecAdminHow to Check IPv4 Address on Ubuntu 22.04 – TecAdmin

        Question – How to find static IP Address of My Ubuntu Desktop system? 2 Ways to find IP Address on Ubuntu 22.04 Desktop and server editions?

        Ubuntu 22.04 desktop edition comes with an attractive Gnome Desktop Environment. You can either use the command prompt to check the current IP address on your system or use a GUI option to view the local IP address on your system.

        You can also use another article to change IP address on Ubuntu 22.04 desktop and server editions.

        Choose one of the below methods to check the current IP address on a Ubuntu system.

      • UNIX CopLinux Repository Management using mrepo

        mrepo is used for managing repositories from ISO image. It also downloads updates packages from third party repositories. You can also use this utility for network Linux installation. In this article we will learn Linux Repository Management using mrepo.

      • UNIX CopUsing Chroot in OpenSSH

        OpenSSH provides many features to harden a SSH server. One of them is the ability to restrict a SSH user session to within a directory using chroot. In this article, I am going to describe how to use this feature in OpenSSH.

        So to get started, we first need to understand how this works.

      • Barry KaulerDroidCam audio from phone works

        One issue was no sound. Let it rest overnight, had a relaxing day, went for a walk, worked in the garden. This evening sat down and tested DroidCam again -- this time audio is working.

      • Barry KaulerDroidCam tested has some issues

        DroidCam, the executable 'droidcam-cli', is included in Easy 3.4.7, so today have tested it.

        I installed DroidCam on my phone, and when it starts, shows the port number, in this case "4747".

      • Make Use Of3 Ways to Test SSD Speed & Performance

        Linux users can also test hardware through integrated software.

      • ID RootHow To Install CRI-O on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install CRI-O on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, CRI-O is an open-source container engine and an alternative to the Docker engine. It is a lightweight container runtime environment. A container runtime is software that is responsible for running the containers.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the CRI-O on Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 22.04 and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint, Elementary OS, Pop!_OS, and more as well.

      • ID RootHow To Install Go on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Go on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Go is an open-source programming language that makes it easy to build simple, reliable, and efficient software. Go was created to combine the best features of other programming languages into one language.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the Go programing language on Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 22.04 and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint, Elementary OS, Pop!_OS, and more as well.

      • How to define a custom Firewalld zone

        Firewalld is the default high-level firewall manager on the Red Hat family of distributions. One of its peculiarities is that it defines a series of so called firewall zones: each zone can be considered like a different level of trust and can be configured to allow traffic through a specific set of ports. While Firewalld comes with some predefined zones which can be easily examined and modified, sometimes we may want to create our custom zones from scratch.

        In this tutorial we see how to define Firewalld zones using the xml markup language and dedicated configuration files.

      • How to mount a Samba shared directory at boot

        Samba is a free and open source interoperability suite of programs which allows us to share files and printers between machines running Linux or Windows. A Samba share is pretty easy to configure and can easily be accessed on clients, since the vast majority of Linux file explorers has built-in support samba. In certain situations, however, we may want to mount a Samba share at boot, just like a normal filesystem on a specified mountpoint.

        In this tutorial we are going to see how to use cifs-utils to mount a Samba shared directory on Linux.

      • ByteXDWhat's Happening with CentOS & CentOS 8 EOL Explained

        CentOS is a community-driven Linux distribution, which is an official fork of RedHat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

    • Games

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • 9to5LinuxXfce’s Apps Update for April 2022: New Releases of Mousepad, Xfce Terminal, and Thunar

         In April 2022, Xfce users received a new version of the Mousepad text editor app, 0.5.9, which added a lot of goodies, including a shortcuts plugin, the ability to search history, an automatic reloading option, as well as the ability to hide the search bar by pressing the Esc key even when it’s not focused.

        Furthermore, Mousepad 0.5.9 introduces several under-the-hood changes for a better experience, including escape selection when regex search is enabled, mousepad styleclass for easier theming, moves the document modification mark to the Close button, and a skeleton plugin to make it easier to write new plugins.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • This week in KDE: Porting everything to QtQuick

           Well OK not literally everything. But… a lot of things! The KWin scripts KCM, Filelight, and DrKonqi. What does this mean? From a user perspective, mostly not much except for better visuals that align them better with modern KDE UI design. But it also means better-separated internals, more modern code, and easier hackability for the UI. The software’s lifespan increases and we get closer to everything using the same tech stack. It’s important stuff.

          In addition, you should find lots of nice bugfixes and even a few new features!

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Federico Mena-Quintero: Paying technical debt in our accessibility infrastructure

          This is somewhat of an extended abstract for the talk I want to give at GUADEC.

          Curently, very few people work on GNOME's accessibility infrastructure, which is basically what the free desktop ecosystem uses regardless of GUI toolkit. After Oracle acquired Sun Microsystems in 2010, paid work on accessibility virtually disappeared. There is little volunteer work on it, and the accessibility stack has been accumulating technical debt since then.

          What is legacy code? What sort of technical debt is there in our accessibility stack?

        • Its FOSSHands On With GNOME’s New Terminal for Linux Users

          A few days ago, I shared my experience with the new GNOME Text Editor which is a replacement for the older Gedit editor.

          But that’s not the only ‘new’ replacement of an older application. GNOME 42 also has a new terminal called Console.

          Let me share what’s new in this new terminal offering from GNOME and what it is like to use it.

    • Distributions

      • Its FOSSRust-based Redox OS 0.7.0 Arrives with Enhanced Hardware Support

        While we continue to observe new releases of Ubuntu and Ubuntu-based distros at this time of the year, here’s something for a change.

        The one we’re highlighting here is—Redox OS, which focuses on stability and security. We already covered an article back in 2016 during its early stages of development (if you are curious).

        Basically, it is Unix-based but a complete operating system. Moreover, it is entirely written from scratch using Rust—a popular memory-conscious programming language.

      • New Releases

        • LinuxiacKaOS 2022.04 Ships with the Latest KDE Gear Apps for All KDE Lovers

          KaOS Linux is solely dedicated to the KDE Plasma desktop. Therefore, unlike most other Linux distros, KaOS does not provide various download images for KDE, Gnome, Xfce, or any other desktop, and packages for other desktops are not even included in the KaOS repositories.

          The distro was influenced by Arch Linux, uses Pacman as its package manager, but does not rely on software repositories developed and maintained by Arch Linux.

          Instead, KaOS Linux labels itself as a built-from-scratch Linux distro since all packages in each of its repositories are compiled by the project for the distro.

          Yesterday, KaOS 2022.04 finally became available as an incremental update to the previous release, so let’s briefly look at what’s new.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • SUSE's Corporate BlogKubernetes backup with advanced cluster recovery for SUSE Rancher clusters | SUSE Communities

          SUSE Rancher includes a rancher-backup operator to easily backup, restore or migrate Rancher. However, for broad, ecosystem wide backup and disaster recovery, SUSE’s software development partners step in with application, data and workload-centric solutions addressing the needs of an entire Kubernetes computing landscape. Catalogic Software, a SUSE One Gold Innovate partner, delivers CloudCasa, a Kubernetes Backup and DR as a Service offering, and we’ve invited Catalogic to author a guest blog so you can learn more about their solution. ~Bret

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Linux LinksBest Free and Open Source Alternatives to IBM Watson

          International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) is an American multinational technology corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York. They sell computer hardware, middleware and software employing over 370,000 people.

          IBM acquired Red Hat in 2019. But you can trace IBM’s history of open source far further back. They were one of the earliest champions of open source, backing influential communities like Linux, Apache, and Eclipse, advocating open licenses, open governance, and open standards.

          IBM also collaborates with Linux organisations. For example, IBM works with Ubuntu in areas like containers, virtualization, Infrastructure-as-a-Service, big data analytics and DevOps to provide reference architectures, support solutions and cloud offerings, both for enterprise data centres and cloud service providers.

        • Fedora ProjectChanges/StrongCryptoSettings3Forewarning1

          Cryptographic policies will be tightened in Fedora 38-39, SHA-1 signatures will no longer be trusted by default. Fedora 37 specifically doesn't come with any change of defaults, and this Fedora Change is an advance warning filed for extra visibility. Test your setup with FUTURE today and file bugs so you won't get bit by Fedora 38-39.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • Linux GizmosNovakon new DIN-Rail Protocol Conversion Gateway features TI Sitara ARM processor

         Novakon recently unveiled a compact DIN-rail protocol conversion gateway that integrates the ARM based Sitara processor from Texas Instruments. The Taiwan based company also provides their own web-based programming software to interface with a variety of industrial communication protocols.

        The GW-01 protocol conversion gateway features the ARM Cortex-A8 (up to 1 GHz) CPU. The base model offers 512MB SDRAM and 4GB of eMMC storage. The device can be configured to be equipped with 1GB SDRAM and 8GB of eMMC storage instead.

      • Self Hosted forum with phpBB and Raspberry PI

        King of self-hosted forum platforms, phpBB has a strong story and is spreadly used. As its name suggests, it is based on PHP and is so light that you can run your self-hosted forum with phpBB on Raspberry PI

        In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to install phpBB and configure your very first topic on a cheap Raspberry PI Zero W.

        phpBB is an open-source (Licensed under the GPLv2) forum software, built with a bulletin board logic, that can link a group of people or can power an entire website. Its features can be extended using extensions that can be installed and configured with few clicks. PhpBB includes a customizable registration process for your users, allowing administrators to manage permissions up to a fine level.

      • PurismImproving the Stability and Reliability with a Modular Modem in the Librem 5 – Purism

        Usually we can fully rely on our phones to be reachable at any time—given cellular reception of course—and we take that for granted.

        You surely know situations in your life where that becomes especially critical. Be it when you’re expecting an important call or when you need to be able to receive “emergency” calls in general. The Librem 5 phone is the primary device for the majority of our team, therefore the stability and reliability for us is equally as important for us as our customers.

        The Librem 5 phone is a pretty exceptional device. It’s a general- purpose computer running the same software that laptops run. Plug in a cellular modem into a laptop and you have roughly the same thing in just a different form factor.

        One of the hardest things these days is to get a removable cellular modem card that does audio calls in the first place. It’s a tough market full of proprietary hardware and software where licensing requirements inhibit modems from doing audio calling. For the Librem 5 phone we found one but we can really consider ourselves fortunate as it was and will continue to be a supply chain challenge.

      • CNX SoftwareDIY SBC cases and SBC Case Builder tool based on OpenSCAD - CNX Software

        Since you can’t always rely on single board computer (SBC) vendors to provide a case to match your needs, some went the DIY route. Willy Tarreau designed some laser-cut enclosures with Inkscape for various SBCs, while hominoids went a step further by developing the “SBC Case Builder” tool to automatically generate various types of 3D printable enclosures using OpenSCAD.

      • Red HatFirmware updates, part 1: Bootloader

        This is the first post in a series about doing device firmware updates (DFU) over the air (OTA) and continuous delivery of firmware for embedded devices. We'll explore the different parts of a complete end-to-end system with this capability.

        This post will be about a fundamental component in such a system: the bootloader.

      • APNICShedding light on power plant control networks

        Like all critical infrastructure sectors, the energy sector has become reliant on automation techniques to monitor and control its networks. However, not much is publicly known about these techniques or the networks that tend to use proprietary protocols and operate in closed settings.

        To address this knowledge gap, we at the Brandenburg University of Technology, recently conducted a project to study the design of industrial control networks that run power plants. Below are some of our key takeaways that we presented recently at PAM 2022.

      • APNICHow effective is HTTPS/TLS usage in the consumer IoT ecosystem?

        Unfortunately, little is known about the degree of effectiveness with which IoT devices use TLS. What’s more worrisome is that TLS usage in other non-browser software has been found to be particularly problematic, with some experts calling it “the most dangerous code in the world”.

        To fill this knowledge gap, we at Northeastern University and IMDEA Networks studied ~17M TLS IoT device connections. The following post offers a brief snapshot of what we discovered and presented at IMC 2021.

      • HackadayArduino And Git: Two Views

        You can’t do much development without running into Git, the version control management system. Part of that is because so much code lives on GitHub which uses Git, although you don’t need to know anything about that if all you want to do is download code. [Dr. Torq] has a good primer on using Git with the Arduino IDE, if you need to get your toes wet.

      • Mobile Systems/Mobile Applications

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • PostgreSQLPostgreSQL: Announcing the release of Apache AGE(incubating) 1.0.0

        Apache AGE(incubating) is a PostgreSQL extension that provides graph database functionality.

        AGE is an acronym for A Graph Extension, and is inspired by Bitnine's fork of PostgreSQL 10, AgensGraph, which is a multi-model database. The goal of the project is to create single storage that can handle both relational and graph model data so that users can use standard ANSI SQL along with openCypher, the Graph query language.

      • Make Use Of8 Photoshop Alternatives for Creating 3D Elements

        Blender is a favorite among 3D designers. Whether you’re creating a scene or a character, there’s not much you can’t do with this software.

        You can use Blender for 3D printing, and like Substance 3D Stager, you can add lighting to your scenes or work with UV maps to create accurate texture mapping in Blender designs. And that’s not even the half of it; check out these Blender tutorials to acquaint yourself with the program.

        Blender’s 3D abilities are definitely more complex than what was offered by Photoshop’s 3D features. It can easily replace some features like 3D text creation and perspective warping.

      • Content Management Systems (CMS)

        • People of WordPress: Meher Bala

          In this series, we share some of the inspiring stories of how WordPress and its global network of contributors can change people’s lives for the better. This month we feature a Indian-based WordPress developer and long term contributor on how it helped her find a career and a local and global community to belong to.

          WordPress is an inspiration to Meher Bala, a frontend web developer and community builder from India. From using the software as a basic website tool to helping entrepreneurs and good causes around the world fulfill their aspirations, she has overcome personal barriers and now aims to inspire others.

          Meher found her vocation and learned new skills through WordPress. She also discovered a way to encourage other women to consider careers in IT.

      • Education

        • Michael DeHaanWhat Computer Science Programs Should Teach (IMHO)

          Mostly I’m impressed with the energy out of new graduates, but observing some things, I think I’m not positive that is directly correlated to what colleges are teaching them. There are also a lot of things in industry that I see people lack experience in, and while it’s not the fault of a college program to teach people things, nor even should it be a requirement that someone have a CS degree, these are things that are most easily fixed if they were addressed at this level.

          Well, first off, there is little “Computer Science” in much of anything any of us in the computer industry do. So I think, really, we should just admit that what universities are teaching is “software engineering”. That’s ok. Call it that if it lets you rewrite the curriculum. Even that’s a euphemism though? Should we maybe first admit that too?

      • FSF

        • Licensing/Legal

          • The Interactive Fiction CommunityInform 7 v10.1.0 is now open-source

            Inform is a design system for interactive fiction based on natural language, and consists of a core compiler, together with extensions, kits and other resources, a number of outlying tools, and documentation, along with applications presenting the system in a friendly way on MacOS, Windows and Linux. This software had been used extensively since 28 April 2006, but by 2016 its source code was in considerable need of modernisation. In part that was wear-and-tear, but it was also the effect of years of experiment in which the code was often built without a full understanding of the concepts it was groping towards. In early 2016, then, a substantial work of renovation began. That work is now essentially complete, and the first results can be seen. The git repository “GitHub - ganelson/inform: The core software distribution for the Inform 7 programming language.” became public today, presenting the complete source and extensive technical documentation. And with that, the whole system was placed under the highly permissive [sic] Artistic License 2.0. This is an open-source licence recognised as such by, for example, the Free Software Foundation.

      • Programming/Development

        • OpenSource.comParsing data with strtok in C |

          Some programs can just process an entire file at once, and other programs need to examine the file line-by-line. In the latter case, you likely need to parse data in each line. Fortunately, the C programming language has a standard C library function to do just that.

          The strtok function breaks up a line of data according to "delimiters" that divide each field. It provides a streamlined way to parse data from an input string.

        • Linux HintBest Programming Languages to Learn in 2022

          A programming language contains instructions that direct a computer to perform a specific task. Computer programming languages have evolved over time. Numerous communities have contributed to the development of programming languages.

          In the current technologically rich era, the number of programming languages has been increasing day by day. It becomes a challenging task for a novel computing enthusiast to choose which language best fits the situation. Keeping in view the importance of programming languages, this informative guide provides a list and a brief explanation of the best programming languages to learn in 2022.

        • GeorgeA Parable Of Explainability

          Why was that prediction made as a function of our inputs and their interactions? Under what conditions would the outcome differ? These are questions of explainability, questions we may assume are critical for the pursuit of science. Answers to them hold most of the upside of explainability.

          There's a running assumption that people are better than trained algorithms by this second definition. I believe it's mainly a matter of semantics.

        • Amos WengerLies we tell ourselves to keep using Golang

          There's also a vocal portion of commenters who wholeheartedly agree with the rant, but let's focus on unpacking the apparent conflict here.

          I'll first spend a short amount of time pointing out clearly disingenuous arguments, to get them out of the way, and then I'll move on to the fairer comments, addressing them as best I can.

        • Python

          • Glyph LefkowitzYou Should Compile Your Python And Here’s Why

            In this post I’d like to convince you that you should be running Mypyc over your code — especially if your code is a library you upload to PyPI — for both your own benefit and that of the Python ecosystem at large.

            But first, let me give you some background.

  • Leftovers

    • Counter PunchRadical Left-Wing Science Fiction

      Well it did, briefly, with a vengeance. The real fiesta of sci-fi taboo smashing was the 1960s and ‘70s, as documented in the newly published Dangerous Visions and New Worlds, Radical Science Fiction 1950-1985, edited by Andrew Nette and Ian McIntyre. This survey includes essays on sci fi and the Vietnam war, post-nuclear-apocalypse dystopias, second wave feminism, the antiauthoritarianism of Philip K. Dick, Black power, eco-death, marijuana, LSD and methamphetamine, Dr. Who, radical sci fi in the Soviet Union, gender as reflected in the life and work of Alice Sheldon, aka James Tiptree Jr., animal liberation, the Women’s Press, Octavia Butler and much more.

      The essay on the stupendous oeuvre of Philip K. Dick discusses his well-known reliance on amphetamines, which stoked his truly prolific output. The article does not mention his conviction, shortly before his death, that he was in telepathic communication with extra-terrestrials, but it does elaborate many of his mental oddities, for instance his paranoid certainty that the CIA was after him. If not the CIA, a conspiracy equally minatory. “Dick exhorted the FBI to investigate the break-in” to a safe in his house, “which he linked to what he called ‘a covert organization including politics, illegal weapons, etc., who put great pressure on me to place coded information in future novels.’”

    • Counter PunchToots at 100

      Even though there was no sound, I immediately heard the haunting yet happy cry of his instrument, one that could pose in fragile melancholy, then in the next instant fire off lightning bolts of bebop. The amiable Thielemans would have been 100 today. He made it almost that far, still playing concerts within two years of his death in 2016 at the age of 94.

      He lived through a long stretch of jazz history, helped make that history. Inspired by fellow Belgian Django Reinhardt, whom he counted as his most lasting and lyrical influence, Thielemans jammed with Charlie Parker, toured with Benny Goodman, was befriend by Louis Armstrong, gloried in countless concerts and recordings with a decades-spanning succession of luminaries.

    • Counter PunchBrown And Unaddressed: Margaret Garcia’s Arte Para la Jente

      In this collection of work, Garcia draws from her immediate surroundings as inspiration. Her portraits are of close friends with whom she has developed strong bonds. Garcia’s landscapes are her cartographies that hold dear memories of her community and places she sought to experience.

      Garcia is known for her bright color palette and her course textured style of painting. She paints immediate moments engraved in her memory and immortalized on canvas. Without any doubt, Garcia is our Van Gogh of our times. She gives color to scenes that otherwise could be pale and carry a monotonous and gloomy expression.

    • Common DreamsOpinion | We Cannot Adequately Resist Without Reimagining the World We Want

      The past two and a half years of pandemic, food shortages, racial uprisings, economic collapse, and now another war are enough to make one feel that the apocalypse is unfolding. With globalization and digital technology, breaking news of the world's problems is at our fingertips at any instant. The scope of the issues we're facing as a species and as a planet can be paralyzing. And, in the background of all this, we are experiencing climate collapse, with epic flooding, fires, and increasingly severe storms. I was shocked this past summer by the smoky haze enveloping our farm in New York, a result of California wildfires on the other side of the continent.€ 

    • Counter PunchA Pandemic Year of Hope, Trauma, and Tragedy, Up Close and Personal

      It’s part of Patrick’s job not to take that — the most personal of insults and an almost universal expression of disrespect — personally. He knew enough about that boy and his sad story to see the truth of the maxim “hurt people hurt.”€  In this case, it was also a matter of “disrespected kids disrespect.” So, he handled it and his emotional response to the grossness of being spit on, too. He got that kid down and back into class. Then he cleaned himself up and went on with his day.

      This is not the first time he’s been spit on this year and it probably won’t be the last. It isn’t even the worst. Once, he was so covered in spittle he had to go home in the middle of the day to shower and change clothes. And mind you, this is all happening during the coronavirus pandemic and the mandatory mask wearing that is supposed to keep his school safe (at least from the virus).

    • HackadayMotorcycle Voltage Regulator Uses MOSFETs

      For how common motorcycles are, the designs and parts used in them tend to vary much more wildly than in cars and trucks. Sometimes this is to the rider’s advantage, like Honda experimenting with airbags or automatic transmissions. Sometimes it’s a little more questionable, like certain American brands holding on to pushrod engine designs from the ’40s. And sometimes it’s just annoying, like the use of cheap voltage regulators that fail often and perform poorly. [fvfilippetti] was tired of dealing with this on his motorcycle, so he built a custom voltage regulator using MOSFETs instead.

    • HackadayA Great Resource For The Would-Be Pinball Machine Builder

      Those of us beyond a certain age will very likely have some fond memories of many an hour spent and pocket money devoured feeding the local arcade pinball machine. At one time they seemed to be pretty much everywhere, but sadly, these days they seem to have largely fallen out of favour and are becoming more of speciality to be specifically sought out. Apart from a few random ones turning up — there’s a fun Frankenstein-themed machine in the Mary Shelley Museum in Bath, England — a trip to a local amusement arcade is often pretty disappointing, with modern arcade machines just not quite scratching that itch anymore, if you ask us. So what’s an old-school hacker to do, but learn how to build a machine from scratch, just the way we want it? A great resource for this is the excellent Pinball Makers site, which shows quite a few different platforms to build upon and a whole ton of resources and guides to help you along the way.

    • HackadayBuilding A Swiss Army Lab With Software Defined Instrumentation

      It’s a fair bet that anyone regularly reading Hackaday has a voltmeter within arm’s reach, and there’s a good chance an oscilloscope isn’t far behind. But beyond that, things get a little murky. We’re sure some of you have access to a proper lab full of high-end test gear, even if only during business hours, but most of us have to make do with the essentials due to cost and space constraints.

    • Carl SvenssonThe IBM PC XT Desk Caddy

      What makes this particular desk caddy special is that it comes with some provenance: my colleague got it from her father-in-law, who worked as a mainframe salesman at IBM.

    • HackadayEquipping An ATV With A Trashcan Lifter

      [ITman496] is one of us hackers working his way around health problems, in his case, a back injury. He is eager to solve various difficulties he has to deal with, and in case of the video he made, it was about moving a large trashcan through ice-covered roads on his property. Not willing to risk his health any further and dissatisfied with the flimsy solutions for sale requiring him to do the heavy lifting, still, he designed and built a winch-powered trashcan lifter mechanism – not entirely unlike a forklift. He mounted it to his ATV, tested it, improved upon it, filming his progress along the way – and then made a video detailing the entire build for us!

    • jmtd → log → hyperlinked PDF planner

      I've been having reasonable success with time blocking, a technique I learned from Cal Newport's writings, in particular Deep Work. I'd been doing it on paper for a while, but I wanted to try and move to a digital solution.

      There's a cottage industry of people making (and selling) various types of diary and planner as PDF files for use on tablets such as the Remarkable. Some of these use PDF hyperlinks to greatly improve navigating around. This one from Clou Media is particularly good, but I found that I wanted something slightly different from what I could find out there, so I decided to build my own.

      I explored a couple of different approaches for how to do this. One was Latex, and here's one example of a latex-based planner, but I decided against as I spend too much time wrestling with it for my PhD work already.

    • Science

      • Scientific AmericanAIs Spot Drones with Help from a Fly Eye

        Now, with some help from nature, a team of scientists and engineers at the University of South Australia, the defense company Midspar Systems and Flinders University in Australia may have found a solution. In their new paper, they demonstrate an algorithm that was designed by reverse engineering the visual system of the hoverfly—a family of mainly black-and-yellow-striped insects known for their habit of hovering around flowers. As anyone who has tried to swat a fly can attest, many of these buzzing pests have incredibly keen vision and fast reaction times. Such abilities stem from their compound eyes, which take in a lot of information simultaneously, and from the neurons that process that information—which turn out to be extremely good at separating relevant signals from meaningless noise. A vast range of animals have visual systems that effectively tune out noise, but the simple brains of flies—and the resulting ease of researching them—make the insects a particularly useful model for computer scientists.

      • Matt RickardSteganography

        Surprise. There's another image encoded in the second image of a t-rex. There's a secret image of a baby panda hidden inside trex-2.jpeg.

    • Education

      • Wouter GroeneveldCool Things People Do With Their Blogs

        mall and independent blogs are always full of surprises. The more blogs I stumble upon, the more genuinely surprised I am by the things people do with their blogs. It seemed like a good idea to summarize highlights here. I hope it might inspire non-bloggers to blog and bloggers to tinker more with their site—because obviously the tinkering never ends!

        I randomly selected blogs for each thing. There are ample other sites that use that particular feature, but I had to start somewhere. Some blogs appear muiltple times, probably making them even funkier! This list is incomplete, I’ll try to periodically update it as I encounter more cool stuff. Enjoy!

      • The NationOur Floundering Public School System Is Failing Teachers

        Everyone has ideas about how to improve our schools and can point a finger at those they blame for the failures in that system: absent or omnipresent parents, video games and social media, cops in schools (as symbols of public safety or emblems of the “school-to-prison” pipeline), and that’s just to begin down an endless list.

        Wherever you want to lay the blame, the solution isn’t hard to find, it’s just expensive.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • TruthOutMore Viral Outbreaks Are Likely Coming Due to Climate Crisis, New Study Says
      • Counter PunchDo You Still Believe in the “Chemical Imbalance Theory of Mental Illness”?

        Acceptance of the idea that a chemical imbalance causes depression transformed the public’s comfort level about taking antidepressants. With a belief that a chemical imbalance caused their depression, accompanied by repeatedly hearing that Prozac, Zoloft, and other selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants “work to correct this imbalance,” it seemed irresponsible not to take these antidepressants.

        So between 1988 (when the first of the SSRIs, Prozac, hit the market) and 2008, the rate of antidepressant use in the United States increased nearly 400 percent. By 2013, 16.7 percent of American adults reported filling one or more prescriptions for psychiatric drugs; and a 2022 Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) survey (March 30-April 11) reported 23.5 percent of American adults (29.6 percent women) “took prescription medication for mental health.” Among children, Psychology Today reported in 2021: “In the USA, 1 in 12 children are on psychiatric drugs, including 1.2 percent of pre-schoolers and 12.9 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds.”

      • Counter PunchJapan’s Toxic Dumping Faces Growing Protests

        Meanwhile, in a startling maneuver indicative of desperation to convince citizens of its true worthiness, the Japanese government is using mind control tactics reminiscent of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World (Chatto & Windus, 1932), which depicts harmful effects that the expansion and development of a capitalist ideology can impose on a society.

        To wit: Japanese citizens are outraged over a new government policy of brainwashing children by distributing flyers to primary school students claiming TEPCO’s “diluted, nuclear-contaminated water is safe.”

      • The NationA New Intervention in California’s Mental Health Crisis
      • Counter PunchManoomin May Day

        War is a means of conquering at home, Tom Paine said in Rights of Man. Randolph Bourne died of the 1919 ‘flu but had written that war is the health of the state.€  The war in Ukraine now threatens the energy systems, the food systems, and ideas of sovereignty.€  I’ll reflect on manoomin, this workers’ holiday, and ‘the rights of nature.’

        In the life cycle of manoomin, or wild rice, the month of May is an important stage. After three months of dormancy germination begins in the spring.€  The ice has melted and the waters warmed to at least 45o F.€  By May manoomin is present on the waters.€  This is its floating leaf stage.€  It doesn’t have to happen exactly on May Day but depending on conditions of weather and water it may.€  The long slender leaves grow towards the light and the surface.€  Meanwhile the roots reach further into the sediment to anchor manoomin.€  This enables the plant to continue its life by standing up, growing taller, flowering, pollinating, until in late summer or early fall, its flowers having turned to seed the grains “shatter” or break away and plummet into the water to find rest in the mud and the cycle begins again. But at the floating leaf stage it lies on the surface of the lake waters like wisps of hair from Mother Earth, to borrow an expression from Robin Wall Kimmerer.

      • Common DreamsOpinion | The Dire Consequences of the US Neglecting the Ongoing Pandemic

        "We are certainly right now in this country out of the pandemic phase," Dr. Anthony Fauci, President Biden's chief medical advisor, told the PBS Newshour this week. Not all experts agree. "With all due respect to Dr. Fauci. I think we are still very much in a pandemic in this country," Dr. Jonathan Reiner of the George Washington School of Medicine told CNN. "Cases have risen in the United States over 60%. Currently there are 15,000 people hospitalized in the United States with COVID-19 and and that number has risen by almost 2000 people over the last couple of weeks…And because hospitalizations are rising, we will soon see deaths rising."

      • GannettMy young patient struggled with depression. And TikTok was making it worse.

        Frequent use of TikTok is associated with numerous mental health problems. Recent investigative reports by The Wall Street Journal and Raw Story have highlighted the deleterious influences of TikTok on kids.

        A large problem with TikTok is that it provides a stream of user-uploaded videos and recommends additional clips based on which videos are being watched. These recommended clips can be extreme, provocative and even dangerous.

      • The NationHow Covid Revealed the Folly of Our Child Protection System

        During the early months of the Covid pandemic, some experts issued dire warnings that child maltreatment would spike because children were spending more time with their families. They speculated that the lockdown put children at risk because they were confined to their homes with potentially abusive parents, outside the watchful gaze of social workers, teachers, and other mandated reporters. By June 2020, when child abuse reports to New York City’s Administration for Children’s Services (ACS) had plummeted sharply, police, prosecutors, and child protection officials told The New York Times that the decline “could be a sign that an unseen epidemic of abuse is spreading behind locked doors.”

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • APNICTracing the DDoS attack ecosystem from the Internet core

          Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks pose a major and omnipresent threat to the stability of the Internet. On average, about one-third of the active /24 networks on the Internet receive some form of DDoS attack every two years.

        • NVISO LabsAnalyzing VSTO Office Files

          OLE files (the default Office document format prior to Office 2007) can also be associated with VSTO applications. We have found several examples on VirusTotal, but none that are malicious.

          Therefore, to illustrate how to analyze such a sample, we converted the .docx maldoc from our first analysis, to a .doc maldoc.

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Digital Content NextContextual may be a better alternative to behavioral advertising

              In contrast, most respondents (66%) report they are uncomfortable with companies tracking their browsing history to show them personalized ads. Further, women are more uncomfortable with behavioral ads than men (70% vs. 61%). Older adults aged 55+ are also more likely than younger adults to say they are uncomfortable with brands tracking their browsing history.

            • CoryDoctorowKilling online surveillance with contextual ads

              The [Internet] has ushered in an era of unprecedented invasive surveillance. Commercial operators large and small spy on us in every way and sell and give away and leak our data to criminals, cops, spies, advertisers and stalkers.

              This isn't because you're not paying for "the product," which makes you the product. Companies that can abuse you do.

              John Deere will sell you a $800,000 tractor and then lock you out of getting it fixed so they can charge you a fortune for repairs. You're paying for the product, but you're still the product.

            • TechdirtHow Far We’ve Come: How One Musician Became A Star On TikTok

              There was recently an absolutely fascinating episode of the NPR podcast Planet Money, all about how Tai Verdes became a pop star. It actually appears to be a rerun of a different podcast, called Switched On Pop, which originally ran back in December of last year, but I first heard it on Planet Money. The story covers how he became massively popular while he was still working in a Verizon store.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Counter PunchHow Could the U.S. Help to Bring Peace to Ukraine?

        On April 21st, President Biden announced new shipments of weapons to Ukraine, at a cost of $800 million to U.S. taxpayers. On April 25th, Secretaries Blinken and Austin announced over $300 million more military aid. The United States has now spent $3.7 billion on weapons for Ukraine since the Russian invasion, bringing total U.S. military aid to Ukraine since 2014 to about $6.4 billion.

      • Counter PunchLet's Avoid a WW III

        According to the April 15 Washington Post, Russa “sent a formal diplomatic note to the United States warning that U.S. and NATO shipments of the ‘most sensitive’ weapons systems to Ukraine were ‘adding fuel’ to the conflict there and could bring ‘unpredictable consequences.'” € Bluff or not, Putin’s threats are real.€  In his speech at Georgia Tech on April 14, CIA Director William Burns cautioned: “none of us can take lightly the threat posed by a potential resort to tactical nuclear weapons.”

        According to the New York Times, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin declared at the end of his April 23 visit to Ukraine that America’s goal is to see Russia “weakened” militarily.€ As Washington pledges additional arms and demonizes Putin, the escalating proxy war raises the risk of armed conflict between two nuclear armed powers.

      • FAIRJosmar Trujillo on Hyper-Policing

        This week on CounterSpin: There are reasons that so much news media is consumed with crime. Not just any crime, not wage theft, not lethal pollution—but street crime, random, individual crime. “If it bleeds, it leads” journalism draws eyes to the set, doesn’t bother advertisers, is cheap to produce and lets news outlets look as though they’re tracking an important event in real time, and pretend as though they’re protecting real people…as they forcibly distract from actual humane efforts to respond to the ongoing crises—homelessness, poverty, addiction—that lead to crime, but are less cheap and easy to cover than cops and robbers. It’s a story old as journalism, but it’s still messed up. We’ll talk about that with activist and writer Josmar Trujillo, working now with Copwatch Media, a community-based project that reports on the effects of hyper-policing on communities.

      • Counter PunchRoaming Charges: Was That Some Kind of Joke?

        + Was that some kind of a joke, Lloyd? This has been US policy since Madeleine Albright became Secretary of State in 1993. Every new “reset” merely tightened the screws further. Ukraine is paying the price now. Soon we’ll all be paying the price. Shall we convene a séance to ask the shade of Madame Secretary, if it was worth it?

        + Biden is asking Congress for another $33 billion in “emergency” military and economic aid to Ukraine.€ This is an endless cycle: more weapons will escalate the war, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis, which will require ever more economic assistance. A negotiated settlement will save thousands of lives and billions of dollars, which is, of course, why it’s not being pursued.

      • Counter PunchThe New Turn in Ukraine: Putin’s War Becomes Biden’s War

        Even so, that is not the end of the discussion. Far from it.€  At first one could rightfully have called this Putin’s war, but it has now become Joe Biden’s war as well.

        Consider what has happened so far. The advance of Russian troops toward Kyiv was stalled by a combination of factors, including Russian military problems, Ukrainian determination, and Western weaponry. Whether the invaders’ intention was actually to take Kiev or to lay the groundwork for a more serious campaign in Ukraine’s south and east is not clear, but the advance faltered with heavy losses in men and equipment.

      • Counter PunchAlbright's Funeral: The Sword and the Cross Come Together

        Albright, Biden and the Clintons covered for each other’s criminal war making — and ultimately, they all enabled and covered for Republican criminality as well. All showed they were capable of murderous deceits.

        It sparked some measure of attention during the 2020 election, but it’s largely been forgotten that the current sitting president, who with great hypocrisy calls Vladimir Putin a war criminal, Joe Biden, won’t tell the truth about his Iraq war record — and he hasn’t for years.

      • Counter PunchThe Second Level Geopolitical War in Ukraine Takes Over

        Even this widely endorsed narrative was deceptive and one-sided as it overlooked the provocative nature of NATO expansion, abetted in Ukraine’s case by American interference in the internal politics of the country to help turn the political tide in the country against Russia. It is€  in this internal setting that the third level of the war persists as there is no doubt that anti-Russian elements in Western Ukraine were deeply abusive toward the majority Russian speaking population in Eastern Ukraine known as the Donbas region. The non-implementation of the Minsk Agreements negotiated in 2014-15 to protect the Ukrainians in the East was never properly implemented. It remains uncertain as whether the Russia/Ukraine level of combat can be resolved without serious addressing Russian and Donbas concerns at the core of this third level of conflict.

        What has been apparent to critics for some time is that Western diplomacy has become primarily committed to second level Geopolitical War even at the cost of greatly prolonging and aggravating the Ukrainian war on the ground and producing growing risks of a wider war. Only in the past few days has this priority been more or less acknowledged by high officials in the U.S. Government, most dramatically in the visit of Antony Blinken, Secretary of State, and Austin, Secretary of Defense to Ukraine and later to meeting in Europe with their NATO counterparts. What was revealed was that the number one policy goal of the U.S. was ‘the weakening of Russia’ made a viable undertaking by the unexpected resistance capabilities of Ukrainian armed forces bolstered by a show of unified patriotic resolve. In keeping with this line of thinking, arms shipments to Ukraine were increased significantly, and more tellingly, overtly acknowledging the shipment of so-called heavy armaments with offensive capabilities. As this dynamic unfolded, Germany dramatically reversed its policy of not providing heavy weaponry, and the whole tenor of assistance was shifted from helping Ukraine resist to addressing the geopolitical agenda with its two goals: inflicting a humiliating defeat on Russia and signaling to China to not doubt Western resolve to defend Taiwan.

      • Common DreamsPacific Elders Say US-China Military Tensions Secondary to Rising Seas

        As military tensions mount between the United States and China over the Solomon Islands' decision to pursue a security pact with Beijing, former Pacific Island nation leaders on Friday reaffirmed that rising sea levels driven by climate change—not great-power geopolitical jostling—is the region's biggest threat.

        "These nations have done very little to address their own greenhouse gas emissions."

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Ukraine, Existential Threats, and Moving Back From the Brink

        This spring, as those before, beckons a season of renewal and opportunity for the future. We have just witnessed the major religions of the world celebrate Easter, Passover, and Ramadan and in the words of Ambassador El Yazidi of the Coordinating Council of Muslims in Germany, "We are all siblings in humanity and must work together for good."

      • Counter PunchWar in Ukraine is Pushing Global Acute Hunger to the Highest Level in This€ Century

        Together, Russia and Ukraine account for almost 30% of total global exports of wheat, nearly 20% of global exports of corn (maize) and close to 80% of sunflower seed products, including oils. The war has largely shut off grain exports from Ukraine and is affecting Ukrainian farmers’ ability to plant the 2022 crop. Planting there in 2022 is expected to be reduced by nearly a quarter.

        Sanctions and constraints on shipping in the Black Sea have largely shut down Russian exports, except by land to neighboring friendly countries. This is driving up world prices for grain and oilseeds, and increasing the overall cost of food.

      • Counter PunchReducing Tensions, Building Trust, De-escalating

        1. U.S. hydrogen bombs stationed in Europe could be withdrawn and their planned replacement cancelled.

        The United States and Germany are formal states parties to the Treaty on the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Articles I and II of the NPT flatly prohibit the transfer of nuclear weapons from one states party to another. Any fourth grader can understand that the NATO practice of “nuclear sharing” with Germany, Italy, Belgium, The Netherlands, and Turkey — which together have over 100 U.S. nuclear weapons — is an open violation of the clear, unambiguous, unequivocal and binding prohibitions of the NPT.

      • Counter PunchExamining The Progress of the United Nations Towards a Post-National Constellation

        The successes and failures of UN intervention

        The authority of the UN was provocatively evident when they intervened in “conflicts within states, be it, (a) in response to violence caused by civil wars or breakdown in government€  (as in the former Yugoslavia, Libya, Angola, Burundi, the Central African Republic, and East Timor); or (b) in response to gross violations of huma rights or ethnic cleansing (as in Rhodesia [Zimbabwe] and South Africa, Northern Iraq, Somalia, Rwanda, and Zaire); or, (c) in order to promote democracy (as in Haiti or Sierra Leone” (p. 170). The Security Council also tapped its tradition of Nuremburg and Tokyo in establishing “war crimes tribunals for the massacres in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia” (ibid.).

      • Common Dreams'This Is Robbery': Chevron Profits Quadruple and Exxon's Double Amid Ukraine Crisis

        Chevron and ExxonMobil announced Friday that their profits surged during the first quarter of 2022, prompting fresh calls for a windfall tax as the U.S.-based oil giants continue to exploit Russia's war on Ukraine to hike prices at the pump and lobby for more drilling.

        "Letting polluters rake in obscene profits at the expense of consumers and the climate is simply unconscionable."

      • TruthOutJanuary 6 Committee Will Hold at Least 8 Public Hearings Starting in June
      • The NationTrevor Reed’s Freedom Should Spur Calls to Release Brittney Griner

        Trevor Reed, a former US Marine, was detained in Russia for three years and served two years of a nine-year sentence, after being convicted on charges of endangering the “life and health” of Russian police officers. He has maintained his innocence, and his supporters, including the US government, have long classified his trial as a sham. Reed was given the chance at a reduced sentence if he pleaded guilty and instead said, “I would rather stay in prison an honest man than walk away tomorrow a liar and a coward.”

      • Counter PunchThe Elephant in the Room is a Guerilla: Campaigning with H.F. Valentine

        In his new book, Don’t Think Of A Republican: How I Won A Republican Primary As A Lefty Progressive And You Can Too, Lonnie Ray Atkinson introduces us to H.F. Valentine, a “lefty progressive” who runs in a Republican primary for the U.S. House of Representatives, and wins. Now these two, Mr. Atkinson and Congressman Valentine, want to be part of the crack team that helps you, and dozens of others, to do the same.

        Yes, Valentine is a fictional character, and Atkinson’s book a work of political satire, but the message is dead serious. This is an open source playbook from a successful, though as yet imaginary, political campaign. It is “a curation of the scandalous rhetoric and the unprecedented electoral truth-telling employed throughout H.F. Valentine’s groundbreaking campaign. Don’t Think of a Republican€ proves the idea of running a lefty progressive in a Republican primary was not really all that bonkers” (6).

      • Counter PunchOur War for Peace Opposes Liberal Terror, Too

        Pandemic isolation and increased reliance on virtual connectivity merely intensify a centuries-long social disintegration. Not only do we have difficulty connecting across differences of race, religion, etc., but we’re not always so sure we need the relationships with people like ourselves, beyond family and those closest! An op-ed piece in the Times (Michael Leibowitz, 4/7/22) talks about how since the pandemic, working from home, the author has become used to relying on “ultraconveniences” available via the Internet. Seeing he now has to push himself against a powerful reluctance to go out for social events, he worries that “rather than receding… our pandemic behaviors are poised to remain a part of life long into the future, eroding communal life and public spaces.”

        It’s ever easier to socialize without experiencing the unexpected, solely with those with whom we’re at ease, from whom we can expect reassurance the world, for the moment is as it seems and should be. Consciously, we have practically no idea how greatly we depend upon situations in which we can present ourselves minus the doubts, uncertainties, and, yes, terrors, that human beings are prone to and are equally as true of us as our Facebook-managed face. What happens, we’re finding, is that the more we avoid anxiety-triggering social situations, anxiety does not lessen, but grows. Protected from social challenges, plugged into electronic media, isolated in suburban lives, we grow ever more fragile, ever less comfortable in “real” – that is, social – life. Meanwhile, “real life” in the shared world run by and for corporate oligarchs, facing apocalyptic threats of species extinction and loss of habitat, rising violence and fascism, etc., becomes ever more objectively terrifying! But having found ways to minimize awareness of terror lying deep at the bottom of our souls, we seem less able to think about the real world’s forboding ominousness, much less to address it politically.

      • Counter PunchRussia, Israel and the Media

        The headlines are jarring:

        “Russia bombs five railway stations” (The Guardian). “Russia bombs Ukraine Steel Plant” (Daily Sabah). “Russia using cluster bombs” (The Guardian). “Russia restarts bombing” (iNews).

      • Site36Ukraine reportedly counters Russian attack on Starlink satellite service

        Russia’s electronic warfare falls short of Pentagon expectations, nonetheless the US Navy is moving an electronic warfare squadron to Germany

      • MeduzaUkraine’s cancer patients: Cancer doesn’t disappear during wartime — but many of the resources required to treat it do

        Every year, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians are diagnosed with cancer —€ and for years, the Ukrainian healthcare system has done fairly well at treating them. Since the war began, however, Ukraine’s medical centers have been overwhelmed by the war-wounded, leaving them with little capacity for cancer patients. While international organizations have mobilized to evacuate juvenile cancer patients quickly and efficiently, adults with the disease have frequently had to fend for themselves. Meanwhile, neighboring countries are worried about their own health care systems being overwhelmed by Ukrainian patients.

      • Meduza‘They can’t imprison everybody’: Yevgenia Kara-Murza on assuming the mantle of her husband’s political work — and explaining his arrest to their children

        Vladimir Kara-Murza has been fired from his job, declared a “foreign agent,” and poisoned twice. But despite all of the threats and persecution, he’s remained in Russia and continued to fight for a freer future. On April 22, Kara-Murza was prosecuted for spreading “fake news” about the Russian army (under Criminal Code Article 207.3). Now, the public fight for Kara-Murza’s release is being led by his wife, translator Yevgenia Kara-Murza, who left her NGO work behind to help her husband and keep his work alive. Meduza spoke with Yevgenia Kara-Murza about life across two countries, the role fear plays in her life, and the sacrifices that come with being married to a high-profile member of the Russian opposition.

      • Meduza'The rules don't require it': Jailed protester Sasha Skochilenko has an autoimmune disease. Prison officials are ignoring her needs.

        In mid-April, Russian artist Sasha Skochilenko was charged with spreading “knowingly false information” about the Russian military’s invasion of Ukraine after she replaced the price tags in a St. Petersburg grocery store with anti-war messages. She now faces up to 10 years in prison.

      • Mint Press NewsThe NATO to TikTok Pipeline: Why is TikTok Employing So Many National Security Agents?

        As the bloody conflict in Ukraine continues to escalate, so does the online propaganda war between Russia and the West. A prime example of this is the White House directly briefing influencers on popular social media app TikTok about the war and how to cover it. As the crisis spirals out of control, Americans have turned to TikTok to view real time videos and analysis of the invasion. With the app estimated to have around 70 million U.S. users, the White House is keenly aware of its impact. “We recognize this is a critically important avenue in the way the American public is finding out about the latest … so we wanted to make sure you had the latest information from an authoritative source,” President Joe Biden’s director of digital strategy, Rob Flaherty, told 30 top TikTok influencers.

      • Democracy NowUkraine Accuses Russia of Firing Missiles Over 3 Nuclear Power Plants, Raising Fear of a New Disaster

        Nuclear watchdogs are expressing alarm over safety conditions at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, which has been under Russian control since early March after a fight that led to a fire near one of the plant’s reactors. It is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe and located in the largest city in southeastern Ukraine still under Ukrainian control. The Ukrainian government accused Russia of launching two missiles that flew over the plant earlier this week, and says Russian missiles have also flown near two other nuclear power plants in the country. Ukrainian energy expert Olexi Pasyuk, deputy director of the group Ecoaction, notes that Russian forces likely already disturbed radioactive materials at the Chernobyl zone, scene of the world’s worst nuclear disaster in 1986. “Zaporizhzhia, where you have reactors in operation and they continue to work now, is a far more dangerous situation,” says Pasyuk.

      • Site36Secret German drone defence

        The Federal Police secures all German commercial airports against unwanted approaches by small copters. Mobile installations are followed by a stationary platform

      • Jewish PressIsrael Gave Honorary Plaque to Jerusalem Mufti Hours Before He Spoke at an Event with Nasrallah, Haniyeh

        Sheikh Ekrima Sa’id Sabri, 83, who was appointed by Yasser Arafat in 1994 to serve as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine (the stint ended in 2006) spoke on Tuesday at a virtual conference alongside senior terrorists from around the world, including Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah and Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh. Islamic Jihad top thugs were also on hand.

      • International Business TimesFormer University Of Alabama Student Receives Prison Sentence For Hiding Financing To Al Qaeda

        Abusaad was sentenced “to 90 months, the equivalent of seven and a half years, in prison followed by 10 years of supervised release for concealing the transmission of funds to be provided as material support to al-Qaida, a designated foreign terrorist organization," the Department of Justice news release said.

      • CBCIntelligence agency needs to keep a closer watch on extremism in prisons, report says

        "Where a person has been convicted of a terrorism offence, it is likely that they will continue to adhere to an extremist ideology and influence others who will pose threats to national security upon release," said the report.

        "Without visibility over the correctional environment, it is conceivable that we will not know of persons who pose a threat upon release."

    • Environment

      • The NationDestructive Grip
      • NPROyster reefs in Texas are disappearing. Fishermen there fear their jobs will too

        "Oyster reefs really just aren't able to recover from the things that we see happening to them," Pollack says.

        Across the Gulf Coast region, an estimated 50-85% of the original oyster reefs have disappeared, according to a report by the Nature Conservancy. They've been hit with hurricanes, flood events, droughts and the BP oil spill.

        In Galveston, Hurricane Ike in 2008 was particularly devastating, destroying more than 6,000 acres of oyster habitat there, according to TPWD.

      • Democracy Now“We Created the Pandemicene”: Ed Yong on How the Climate Crisis Could Spark the Next Pandemic

        Climate change is forcing animal migrations at an unprecedented scale, bringing many previously disconnected species into close contact and dramatically raising the likelihood of viruses leaping into new hosts and sparking future pandemics. That’s according to a new study in the journal Nature, which predicts that climate-driven disruptions to Earth’s ecosystems will create thousands of cross-species viral transmissions in the coming decades. We speak with The Atlantic’s Ed Yong, who says this new era can be thought of as the “Pandemicene,” a time defined by the power of viruses over humanity and the wider world. “In a warming world, we’ll get lots of these spillover events in which viruses find new hosts, mostly transferring between animal to animal but increasing the odds that they will eventually then spill over into us,” says Yong.

      • Counter PunchSlaying the Dragon of Net Zero Emissions

        This understanding was only reached after much hollering and fuss prior to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s visit to the climate change conference in Glasgow in 2021. But Canavan was having none of it and was delighted by the conference’s end that countries had agreed to “phase down” rather than “phase out” coal burning.

        The communique of COP26 was, according to the Queensland Senator, a “green light” for Australia to keep digging and “supply the world with more coal because that’s what brings people out of poverty.”€  There had “never been a higher demand” for coal and a virtuous Australian fossil fuel market would be happy to feed it.

      • Common DreamsCalifornia Praised for Probe Into Plastics Industry's 50-Year Misinformation Campaign

        California Attorney General Rob Bonta received applause Thursday for the launch of a probe into whether the fossil fuel and petrochemical industries engaged in an "aggressive" decadeslong campaign to deceptively convince the public "that recycling can solve the plastics crisis."

        "Plastic pollution is seeping into our water, poisoning our environment, and blighting our landscapes. Enough is enough."

      • Common DreamsArizona Slammed for Permitting Uranium Mine That Imperils Grand Canyon Tribe's Water

        Indigenous and environmental activists on Friday condemned an Arizona agency's approval of a key permit for a uranium mine near the Grand Canyon that opponents say threatens the land, water, wildlife—and Native Americans' ancestral obligation to safeguard a place they've called home for centuries.

        "Neither regulators nor the uranium industry can ensure that mining won't permanently damage the Grand Canyon's precious aquifers and springs."

      • Common DreamsNew Climate Doc Premieres on Netflix as Youth Await Major Court Decision

        The award-winning documentary titled YOUTH v GOV premiered globally on the streaming platform Netflix Friday as the youth plaintiffs featured in the film await a decision that could put their historic climate lawsuit on a path to trial.

        "In under two hours, you get an inside look at nearly seven years of Juliana v. United States," said Julia Olson, executive director and chief legal counsel at Our Children's Trust, in a statement about the independent film. "And it's not over. We are determined to get to trial because our young clients deserve to take the stand and have their evidence heard by a judge."

      • Energy

        • Common DreamsNuclear Critics Cry Foul as Newsom Reconsiders Diablo Canyon Closure

          Anti-nuclear campaigners are warning that California Gov. Gavin Newsom's reconsideration of a long-time plan to shutter the state's Diablo Canyon nuclear plant is a misguided attempt to promote clean energy, calling on the governor to instead move forward with plans to transition to solar power and other renewable sources.

          Newsom told the Los Angeles Times Thursday that the state is hoping to get some of the $6 billion in federal funding that was set aside by the Civil Nuclear Credit program in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act last year to rescue nuclear facilities facing closure.

        • DeSmogHouse Dems Call On Top U.S. Insurers to End Backing of Fossil Fuel Projects

          A group of House€ Democrats on Wednesday sent€ letters€ to 13 of the top U.S. insurers, urging them to stop profiting “from the expansion of fossil fuels while ripping the rug out from under the communities most affected by climate change.”

        • NPRStates sue the U.S. Postal Service over its decision to buy gas-powered trucks

          Three separate lawsuits, filed Thursday by the states and environmental groups in New York and California, ask judges to order a more thorough environmental review before the Postal Service moves forward with the next-generation delivery vehicle program.

          Plaintiffs contend that purchases of fossil fuel-powered delivery vehicles will cause environmental harm for decades to come. The lawsuits could further delay the Postal Service's efforts to replace the ubiquitous delivery trucks that went into service between 1987 and 1994.

        • NPRTexas stumbles in its effort to punish green financial firms

          But if the state boycotts are spreading, so too is the popularity of green investing. In 2014, there were some $52 billion dollars divested from fossil fuels worldwide, according to the Global Fossil Fuel Divestment Commitment Database. By 2022, that number stood at $40.43 trillion.

          Experts are skeptical about the Texas law's chances of success. They point to gaping loopholes in the legislation. They say that the climate risks to the financial system are so huge that there's no real way to stop financial firms from pricing them in - and going greener in the process.

        • Helsinki TimesHS: Finland to donate proceeds of seized bitcoins to Ukraine

          Minister of Finance Annika Saarikko (Centre) on Wednesday revealed to Helsingin Sanomat the government has prepared for weeks to donate proceeds from the sale of bitcoins seized by Finnish Customs to Ukraine.

          Saarikko estimated that selling the seized [cryptocurrency]-assets will provide about 70–80 million euros in additional revenue, adding that a “considerable share” of the proceeds will be donated to the country under military attack by Russia.

        • Bloomberg[Cryptocurrency] Miners’ Electricity Use in Texas Would Equal Another Houston

          The Texas grid operator expects [cryptocurrency] miners to increase electricity demand by up to 6 gigawatts by mid-2023, more than enough to power every home in Houston.

          The forecast from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas is the first official estimate on how much stress miners are apt to put on the state’s electrical system. Officials expect 5 to 6 gigawatts of new demand over the next 12 to 15 months, the equivalent of up to about 1.2 million homes.

        • Hearst CommunicationsLetter: [Cryptocurrency] mining not worth electricity usage

          John Olsen's commentary, "Embrace [cryptocurrency] for NY's economic benefit," April 9, was a blatant distortion of facts by an industry seeking to be completely free of regulation.

        • IEABlockchain applications: an energy perspective

          A blockchain is a public digital ledger which can be used to verify the ownership of both real-world and digital assets such as cryptocurrencies. However, many blockchains, and in particular some cryptocurrencies, use a validation mechanism known as ‘proof-of-work’. This mechanism requires vast computing power and results in substantial electricity consumption. For Bitcoin alone, more than 100 TWh per year is now consumed, which is equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of the Netherlands.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • TruthOutEvictions Are Climbing to Pre-Pandemic Levels in Cities Across the US
      • The NationPortrait of a Radical Swarm

        “Alright, you 90,000 redeemers, rebels and radicals out there.” So opened the inaugural call for Occupy Wall Street. Linked in a tweet that Adbusters, the Vancouver-based activist collective behind the eponymous anticonsumerist magazine, posted on June 9, 2011, their charge went on: “The time has come to deploy this emerging stratagem against the greatest corrupter of our democracy: Wall Street, the financial Gomorrah of America.”

      • Counter PunchThe Different Ways That the U.S. and Chinese Governments Use Their Power to Regulate Capitalism

        Despite differences, both of these social orders shared a mostly private form of capitalist relations of production (the organization of enterprises centered around private employers and employees). That social order has given way to a different, mostly public form of capitalist relations of production where state officials are major employers. The latter form of capitalism is developing most dramatically in China.

        As defined by its core productive relation of employer/employee, capitalism is now developing its productive forces and its gross domestic product (GDP) growth faster in China’s public form of capitalism than in the United States’ private form of capitalism.

      • Counter PunchPrice Controls Could Tame Inflation

        In large part, they’re determined by the corporate cartels that have vanquished their competitors — and Wall Street speculators who place bets on the future availability of commodities.

        With price hikes for energy, gas, and food remaining€ stubbornly high, it’s time to do something about it. That’s why some experts€ now support€ a fix that was long considered taboo: limiting what corporations can charge for certain goods.

      • Common Dreams'No Means Testing. Do It for Everyone': Biden Urged to Go Big on Student Debt Cancellation

        Progressive lawmakers, advocates, and deeply indebted Americans ramped up their calls Friday for President Joe Biden to cancel all outstanding federal student loan debt amid reports that his administration is considering income limits and other restrictions on eligibility for any potential relief.

        "If we can bail out banks that destroyed the economy because of their illegal activity, we can cancel all student debt."

      • Common DreamsIn Act of Solidarity, Greenpeace Joins Striking Refinery Workers to 'Stop Chevron Greed'

        In an act of solidarity with Chevron workers fighting for a new labor contract as executives boast of a record-breaking quarter, Greenpeace USA campaigners joined United Steelworkers Local 5 union members on Friday to expand the picket line onto the waters of San Francisco Bay.

        "The only way we can break these companies' stranglehold on our wallets, our communities, and the planet is by standing together in the call for a livable future."

      • Counter PunchWhy Ukraine Should Cancel All Its Debt, Not Just That Claimed by Russia

        Eric Toussaint: Ukraine’s external debt, public and private, is about $130 billion, half of this debt is owed by the government, and the other half by the private sector. The government also has an internal debt of over $40 billion. Public external debt in the form of sovereign securities amounted to $20 billion in 2021, all of which (there were 14 issues of securities) are governed by English law and in the event of a dispute, the British courts can be called upon. In 2021, the debt to the€ IMF€ amounted to more than 13 billion dollars. The debt to the€ World Bank€ (WB), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and finally the European Investment Bank (EIB) amounted to more than 8 billion dollars.€ The amounts to be repaid in 2022 for both the external and internal debt are enormous and unsustainable in view of the war situation. And finally, there is Ukraine’s bilateral external debt to China, France, Germany, other EU countries, the United States and a $3 billion debt to Russia. Since the beginning of the Russian invasion, Ukraine’s public debt has increased significantly because the IMF and the World Bank have granted a new credit of 5 billion, and other multilateral financial institutions have also granted emergency credits. And the government issued more than $2 billion in new debt securities, called war bonds.

        Sushovan Dhar: What is the background of Ukraine’s indebtedness?

      • Counter PunchTwo Routes to Lower Inflation

        The most obvious reason is the supply chain disruptions that led to the original jump in prices have lasted longer and been more far-reaching than I expected. Part of this is due to the persistence of the pandemic, with the delta and omicron strains disrupting economies around the world.

        The other major source of disruption is Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. This has blocked the supply of many items manufactured in Ukraine, but more importantly, the war reduces its ability to grow and sell wheat and other crops on world markets. There is also the risk of losing Russia’s oil and gas, which propelled oil prices to levels not seen in more than a decade.[1]

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Counter PunchWhy Trump Runs Free

        Writing the third chapter of my latest book This Happened Here: Amerikaners, Neoliberals, and the Trumping of America, was an exhausting and soul-chilling experience. Titled “A Fascist in the White House, 2017-21,” this chapter attempted to catalogue, categorize, and cross-reference the transgressions of the malignant ogre Donald Trump as US president. It records more than 400 “Trumptrocities” filed and cross-listed across 8 different folders. Among the orange-brushed brute’s many offences: the caging and theft of migrant children; pardoning the sadistic war criminal Eddie Gallagher; the placement of open Camp of the Saints fascists like Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller in top advisory roles; embrace of the slaveowners’ Confederacy; defense of murderous white supremacists in Charlottesville; a mass-murderous and pandemicist response to Covid-19; the ugly nativist and sexist call for Ilhan Omar and the Squad to “go back to your crime-ridden countries;” the juvenile disfiguring of a weather map; the sick racist worsening of Puerto Rico’s horrific Hurricane Maria experience; the insane claims that the corporate Democrats are “Marxists” and “radical Left” and that “the radical Left” was taking over America; mad declarations of his own special genius; repeated tyrannical assaults on independent media; open encouragement and cultivation of political violence; embrace of fascist militiamen who attacked state capitals to protest basic public health protections; constant denigration of women; embrace of authoritarian rulers the world over; jokes about being “president for life;” calls for the military suppression of the George Floyd Rebellion; the holding of a bizarre Christian nationalist photo-op following a brutal attack on civil rights protesters in Lafayette Square; the ordering of a police state execution of an antifascist; the arch-criminal assassination of a top Iranian general in Iraq; the embrace of neo-Nazi Q’Anon and fascist lunatics like Marjorie Taylor Greene; providing over for the Saudis’ literal butchering of journalist Jamal Khashoggi; cuddling up to world fascist hero and future Bucha butcher Vladimir Putin; the embrace of a white teen MAGAt who slaughtered two people with an AR-15 at a Black Lives Matter rally in Kenosha, Wisconsin; handing the nation’s climate and energy policy portfolio to fossil fuel interests determined to turn the planet into a giant Greenhouse Gas Chamber; and, by the way, the attempted subversion and overthrow of the 2020 presidential election.

        That’s just the short list. The full record is mind-boggling even if it was unsurprising to those who knew that The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik was on to something when he issued this warning in early May of 2016:

      • Common DreamsWhat Far-Left? Asks AOC. 'We Can't Even Get Our Party to Import Cheaper Prescription Drugs from Canada'

        Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pilloried the world's richest person and Twitter's new owner, Elon Musk, on Friday after he used the social media platform to equate the far-right and the far-left, implying that both are hateful.

        "The far-left hates everyone, themselves included!" said Musk, the chief executive of Tesla whose net worth has skyrocketed to more than $200 billion during the Covid-19 pandemic. "But I'm no fan of the far-right either. Let's have less hate and more love."

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Nothing Spells 'Big Government' Better Than GOP 'Big Lie' Embrace of Martial Law

        Some say the Republican Party has gone nuts. In reality, they’ve simply reached the endpoint toward which they’ve been moving for 62 years: fascism.

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Biden Democrats Are Deer in the Headlights Against Dishonest GOP Onslaught

        There is something about entrenched bureaucracies that transcend nations and cultures. When bureaucracies are confronted with unanticipated or new challenges, they freeze – like a deer facing headlights.

      • Common DreamsDespite Broad Popularity, GOP Moves to Ban Ranked-Choice Voting at Local Level

        Buried in a bill signed into law by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida this week is a provision that will eliminate Floridians' ability to use ranked-choice voting to decide their elections—as people in at least two cities there have voted to do—making DeSantis the latest GOP leader to ban the broadly popular voting reform.

        As Common Dreams reported in March, Senate Bill 524 has been condemned by voting rights groups for creating a first-of-its-kind police force dedicated to investigating so-called "voter fraud" in the state. The law's attack on ranked-choice voting (RCV) has garnered less nationwide attention.

      • Common DreamsOpinion | The So-Called 'Pro-Worker' Republicans Are Silent on Unionization Wins

        Over the past few years, a€ small but highly-visible band of Republicans have publicly declared their intention to transform the GOP into a "worker's party." Sens. Marco Rubio (R‑Fla.), Josh Hawley (R‑MO), Ted Cruz (R‑Tex.) and Tom Cotton (R‑AR) have all embraced versions of this vision, part of a€ high-brow attempt to divorce the party from its sole adherence to pro-business€ conservatism.

      • Common DreamsRobert Reich Backs Nina Turner, 'Who Will Fight for Working People' in Ohio's 11th District

        Former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich on Friday urged voters in Ohio's 11th Congressional District to cast their ballots for progressive firebrand Nina Turner, who is challenging Rep. Shontel Brown in the Democratic primary.

        Reich—now a professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley—said that "we have to elect" Turner "because we need people in Congress who will fight for working people instead of allowing corporations and billionaires to loot the economy."

      • HungaryMomentum MPs announce they will take the oath at the Parliament’s inaugural meeting, but will then walk out
      • The NationThe War on America
      • The NationThe Democrats’ Losing Strategy

        On NBC’s Meet the Press in early April, Hillary Clinton expressed frustration with polls showing that Americans are turning against President Biden and the Democrats as the midterm elections approach. “I’m not quite sure what the disconnect is between the accomplishments of the administration and this Congress and the understanding of what’s been done and the impact it will have on the American public,” griped the party’s 2016 presidential nominee, adding: “Democrats in office and out need to be doing a better job of making the case.”

      • The NationThe Biden Administration Is Leaving the States to Deal With Covid on Their Own

        Millions of low-income Americans are at risk of suddenly losing health coverage when the federal government’s years-long public health emergency declaration expires. The Biden administration extended the coronavirus emergency declaration in April, pushing the expiration of the emergency measures to mid-July. Many public health experts and officials expect the recent renewal to be the final one, urging states to take steps to prepare for the end of these emergency pandemic measures and to bolster public health infrastructure to protect the most vulnerable.

      • PC MagEU Joins Mastodon Social Network, Sets Up Its Own Server

        The effort is currently only a pilot, but it represents the EU’s goal of supporting private and open-source software capable of rivaling mainstream social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. On the same day, the European Commission also launched an account for PeerTube, another decentralized platform that revolves around video sharing.

      • Frontpage MagazineRobert Spencer’s Qur’an

        Which is why the brilliant, prolific Robert Spencer’s newest book, The Critical Qu’ran: Explained from Key Islamic Commentaries and Contemporary Historical Research, is so immensely valuable. As Spencer himself writes in his introduction: “The Critical Qur’an is designed to equip the English-speaking reader with a knowledge of the Qur’an and how it is interpreted in Islam, and to see how mainstream Islamic commentators understand the text, particularly its passages that are most problematic for non-Muslim readers: the exhortations to jihad warfare, the Sharia provisions that call for the denial of various rights to women, and the like. In numerous other editions of the Qur’an, these are obscured with apologetic intent. Here, they are explained in full.”

      • The AtlanticMussolini Speaks, and Tells Us How Democracy Dies

        Even if Mussolini’s movement eventually gained traction with the popular masses, an electoral alliance with these elites allowed him into Parliament in the first place. When the Fascist Party first ran for general elections, in 1919, it didn’t get any seats. For the following elections, in 1921, it formed a joint list with the Liberal Union, obtaining 19 percent of the votes and placing third. By the time Mussolini launched his infamous March on Rome, in 1922, prompting the king to nominate him prime minister, his Liberal allies were mostly on board.

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • TruthOutQAnon and Other Far Right Elements Are Already Shaping the Upcoming Midterms
      • OracThe Great Barrington Declaration never would have worked

        The other day, I was perusing the hellsite known as Twitter before it becomes even more of a hellsite after Elon Musk acquires it, when I came across this series of Tweets about a favorite topic of this blog for the last year and a half, the Great Barrington Declaration. I’ll quote the first few, so that you can see why they would have interested me, namely because they are about a study that provides yet more evidence to support what I’ve been arguing about the Great Barrington Declaration ever since it was first published:

      • TechdirtWhite House Sets Up Monumentally Stupidly Named ‘Disinformation Governance Board’

        The Biden Administration just announced the creation of a DHS subagency apparently intended to confront “disinformation.” The biggest problem with it is that it is impossible, right now, to even know whether it’s a good idea or not, because it is so unclear what this board is intended to do.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • The AtlanticShadowbanning Is Big Tech’s Big Problem

        What makes shadowbanning so tricky is that in some cases, in my view, it is a necessary evil. Internet users are creative, and bad actors learn from informed content moderation: Think of the extremist provocateur that posts every misspelling of a racial slur to see which one gets through the automated filter, or the Russian disinformation network that shares its own posts to gain a boost from recommendation algorithms while skirting spam filters. Shadowbanning allows platforms to suppress harmful content without giving the people who post it a playbook for how to evade detection next time.

      • The HillGreene offers bill to abolish Section 230

        Greene’s bill would eliminate the law making online platforms not liable for content posted by third parties and replace it with a provision to require “reasonable, non-discriminatory access to online communications platforms” through a “common carrier” framework that Greene compared to airlines or package delivery services.

      • Krebs On SecurityYou Can Now Ask Google to Remove Your Phone Number, Email or Address from Search Results

        Google said this week it is expanding the types of data people can ask to have removed from search results, to include personal contact information like your phone number, email address or physical address. The move comes just months after Google rolled out a new policy enabling people under the age of 18 (or a parent/guardian) to request removal of their images from Google search results.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Common DreamsOpinion | The Future of Gen Z Journalism Depends on Julian Assange's Freedom

        Just thirteen days before World Press Freedom Day 2022 the very existence of world press freedom inched closer to its possible demise. On April 20, a U.K. court formally approved extradition of WikiLeaks founder and Australian journalist, Julian Assange, to the United States to be tried under the Espionage Act. He is facing a sentence of up to 175 years.€ 

      • The AtlanticWhere Foreign Correspondents Capitulated to Autocracy

        The statement, just 110 words in all, ended by saying, “The continued arrests of journalists are contributing to the deterioration of press freedoms in Hong Kong, which, the FCC notes, are safeguarded under the Basic Law,” the city’s mini-constitution. After a few small tweaks by committee members, it was sent for approval to the club’s board, composed of journalists from outlets such as The New York Times, the Finnish business newspaper Kauppalehti, CNN, and others, as well as a handful of individuals who do not work in the news industry. This had in the past been a perfunctory step, but after a few hours of silence, we were informed that the board would not approve the statement and that it would not be released.The nebulous explanation given later was that the statement would draw unwanted attention to the club. (Similar prior ones have drawn rebuttals from the authorities in Hong Kong and Beijing.) I asked in our group chat whether anyone could remember a time when this had previously happened, and the longest-serving member, on the committee for more than a decade, responded that it was a first.

        Less than a month later, the board voted to suspend the Human Rights Press Awards. Members were concerned that recognizing winners from Stand News, an independent news outlet whose staff members had been arrested and operations halted last year, could put the club in legal danger. Only one person opposed the move. He subsequently resigned from the board. Award winners from The Wall Street Journal, Agence France-Presse, The Los Angeles Times, Stand News—where Au had previously worked—and other publications would never formally know of the honors granted to them by the judges. (The Atlantic received a merit citation for a story about the plight of China’s Uyghur Muslims.) In a vague statement, the club’s president said that the club did not “wish unintentionally to violate the law” and, despite all evidence pointing to the contrary and without any explanation of how, claimed that it would “continue promoting press freedom in Hong Kong.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • TechdirtThe 9th Circuit Just Breezily Said Your Internet Data Has No 4th Amendment Protections

        Earlier this week, law professor Orin Kerr raised an alert. The 9th Circuit appeals court had come out with a ruling in a case regarding the question of whether or not preservation requests counted as a seizure under the 4th Amendment, and basically said “nope.” As Kerr notes, this ruling effectively could allow the government to get all sorts of your data… on the basis of nothing at all.

      • TruthOutAmazon Call Center Workers in Costa Rica Send Support to Amazon Union in US
      • Counter PunchRevolution in a Courtroom: the Murder Trial of Huey Newton

        Now, with the release of€ American Justice on Trial—a riveting documentary that focuses on the courtroom drama that took place in the summer of 1968 in the Alameda County Courthouse—Pearlman can count herself an accomplished movie maker and film producer. She had ample help from her husband who served as the executive producer. Andrew Abrahams and Herb Ferrette directed, Abby Ginsberg and Bob Richter, now in his 90s, co-produced. Pearlman did the writing and much of the interviewing.

        I did not know much about the Huey Newton trial until I read Pearlman’s book, though as a reporter I attended the trial in New York in 1969 of a group of Black Panthers charged with conspiracy to blow up landmark buildings and sites of historical and political significance like the Statue of Liberty. In 1970, I visited Eldridge Cleaver when he was in exile in Algeria, and in 1989 I attended Huey Newton’s funeral in Oakland, where I met Bobby Seale who introduced me to his mother and gave me an autographed copy of€ € his book about barbecuing. Pearlman’s film took me behind the scenes of the Newton trial and showed me sides of the Panthers, their lawyers and supporters I was previously unaware of, though the Panthers always reached out to me and to other young white radicals, who like them wanted alliances and cooperation.

      • TechdirtLA Sheriff Announces Investigation Of Journalist Who Exposed Jail Brutality, Insists Everyone Is Wrong About What He Said

        When law enforcement officials get caught saying something extremely troublesome at press conferences, the first page of the police playbook is to accuse everyone reporting/retweeting the news of misinterpreting the statements made and/or spreading misinformation. It’s the “my account was hacked” of the Thin Blue Line — a claim no one believes but one that police officials insist is the actual truth.

      • TechdirtHouston Passes Ordinance Forcing Businesses To Install Cameras, Provide Warrantless Access To Recordings

        Citing a post-pandemic shutdown surge in violent crime and some other shaky reasoning, the city council of Houston, Texas has decided the time has come to violate the rights of business owners. Here’s Elizabeth Nolan Brown for Reason:

      • Counter PunchFuck You, Motherfuckers

        By the time I got back to the US in late summer 1973, the Yippies were composed of a different bunch of folks than the original members. During the time I lived in the Bronx in 1973 and early 1974, I would run into different members in the Village and Lower East Side. There was an Impeach Nixon rally in Manhattan that featured Phil Ochs, too. Then, I moved to Maryland where I decided to attend the University of Maryland in College Park. The spring before I matriculated, campus cops joined together with state troopers and various local police agencies in a series of dormitory raids. The cops wanted to bust people for marijuana and LSD. They were successful. They also provoked several days of on and off battles with the cops that were organized by campus radicals and DC area Yippies. In the years that followed, the Yippies would host smoke-ins at the university and in DC on July 4th. They were always fun and often confrontational, depending on whether or not the police wanted to enforce the marijuana laws of the time.

        The last Smoke-In I attended in Washington, DC was in July 1977. Most of the bands involved were of the punk rock variety and the crowd size went from a few hundred to maybe ten thousand over the course of the two-day festival. I had spent a few days prior to the event at a Yippie house in DC. We must have rolled at least five thousand joints to give away. The papers we used were facsimiles of the US flag and the weed was some good Colombian red donated by a friendly smuggler. On July 4th, my friend and I imbibed some punch laced with Everclear alcohol and LSD. When the cops cleared the grounds near the Washington Monument at curfew, we took a DC Metrobus back to Silver Spring. The next smoke-in I attended was in San Francisco’s Civic Center.

      • Common DreamsAbortion Providers Sue to Block Oklahoma GOP's 'Insidious' Bans

        A coalition of Oklahoma abortion providers and national reproductive justice groups filed a pair of lawsuits in state court on Thursday to block two draconian abortion bans passed this month by the GOP-controlled Legislature.

        "Reproductive healthcare is in crisis... This should terrify everyone."

      • Counter PunchHis Masters’ Vice: Jimmy Savile's England

        In Netflix’s Jimmy Savile documentary, Jim the humanitarian and Jimmy the outrageous personality are a seamless routine. And if the rictus of Savile’s thin face looks ever more sinister, it is only because now no one denies his outside capabilities. His loopy grins and bulging eyes marked the eccentricity of a time that lived easier for acting like it didn’t trouble secrets. Savile was a glib and glitzy moppet who roamed far above his station while wearing its language and lurid fashions on his cuff (His friend Mrs. Thatcher dressed dowdy like the Queen and changed her accent from Lincolnshire to middling professional elocution, a shopkeeper’s girl who despised both what was above and what was below her). Savile’s Leeds beginnings are not investigated in the film, which is a shame. The Leeds club scene in the fifties might have ceded some street evidence; only later do we hear that Savile’s first brush with the law was in 1955. It never really brushed him again, until right before he died. In his declining years, the Leeds police frequented his Saturday morning socials. Since the 1960s, he had volunteered in the city’s General Infirmary, where he was surrounded with young and crippled girls. He also had an “unhealthy” interest in the hospital mortuary, according to a timely Dept. of Health inquiry, launched three years after his death.

        Savile knows the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. He bounds on stage at Wembley Stadium. In 1964, he is the first host the influential musical variety show Top of the Pops, and he lives long enough to go back and turn off the lights for its final broadcast in 2006. By then, the rumors of his ‘proclivities’ are ancient and the old man himself is going slightly senile. He makes odd allusions, is occasionally caught off guard, and his clowning finally starts to unnerve those who used to think him just randy. He has never had a girlfriend, but he talks of girls constantly and lets the girls know he knows all about girls. In the mid-1970s, he gives an interview to The Sun where he boasts that he can get anyone’s head kicked in. This comes off like American gangster chic, yet it’s true. Jimmy Savile, host of Jim’ll Fix It, can also fix you. He might be ours, but he’s really his own man.

      • Pro PublicaLiberty University’s Handling of Sexual Assaults Under Investigation by Department of Education

        The federal Department of Education has begun investigating Liberty University’s handling of student reports of sexual assault. In a statement to ProPublica, the school pledged its “full cooperation” with the investigation.

      • Pro PublicaIllinois’ Education Chief Urges Schools to Stop Working With Police to Ticket Students for Misbehavior

        Illinois’ top education official urged schools to stop working with police to ticket students for misbehavior, hours after an investigation by ProPublica and the Chicago Tribune revealed that schools across the state were evading laws designed to prohibit the fining of students.

        In a strongly worded plea sent to officials across the state, Illinois State Superintendent of Education Carmen Ayala said the costly fines associated with the tickets can be immensely harmful to families, and there’s no evidence they improve students’ behavior. School officials who refer students to police for ticketing have “abdicated their responsibility for student discipline to local law enforcement,” she wrote Thursday, the same day the investigation “The Price Kids Pay” was published.

      • The NationGraduate Workers at Indiana University Are on Strike and Fighting for Recognition

        For years, the Indiana Graduate Workers Coalition–United Electric (IGWC-UE) union attempted to work with Indiana University administrators to secure improvements in pay and health care benefits, reduce overbearing workloads, ensure protections for international students, and end burdensome fees that reduce our already meager yearly salaries by around 10 percent. Instead, the administration denied the coalition any meaningful change, saying that our relationship to the university is primarily educational. We shouldn’t expect a living wage, their argument goes, but should instead rely on family, friends, and spouses for financial support while we build our academic portfolio.

      • Democracy Now“The Wobblies”: Iconic Film on the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) Is Rereleased for May Day

        The landmark 1979 labor documentary, “The Wobblies,” has been restored and rereleased for May Day, International Workers’ Day. The film details the history of the Industrial Workers of the World — a radical union whose members are also known as Wobblies — and their inclusive fight to organize “unskilled” workers, secure fair wages and enshrine the eight-hour workday in the early 20th century before they were targeted and repressed by the FBI during World War I. It features interviews with former Wobblies still alive in the 1970s. Deborah Shaffer, who co-directed the film with Stewart Bird, says the IWW “was founded in 1905 out of necessity” because no existing unions represented so-called unskilled labor. “The workers had no representation at all, and they were being expected to work seven days a week, 12-hour days, no breaks, no meals, underpaid, overworked,” she says. “Conditions were terrible and intolerable.” The high-definition rerelease of “The Wobblies” comes after the Library of Congress added it to the National Film Registry in 2021.

      • The NationThe Supreme Court Has Just Invented a New Way to Harass Vulnerable People

        One of the qualities I loathe most about the conservative justices on the Supreme Court is their indefatigable creativity. These people, the six of them who control the court and thus the very definition of human rights in this country, seem never to tire of inventing new ways to harass marginalized communities and diminish the chance that vulnerable people will receive fairness and justice in this world.

      • New York TimesWitness to a Fire

        Bruce’s death reminded me of a time in my life when I was obsessed with finding that something to say. In 2014, I planned a reporting trip to New Delhi to meet with a young Tibetan activist. A few years before, he had tried to self-immolate in protest of Chinese rule of his homeland, but the police tackled him to smother the flames. A 2012 story in The New Yorker estimated that at least 40 Tibetans had self-immolated over the previous year to protest Chinese rule. Total numbers are hard to come by, but needless to say, these acts continue to occur. And the phenomenon is not exclusive to Tibetans.

      • [Old] New YorkerThe Bullshit-Job Boom

        Left to their own devices, Graeber points out, people tend to do work like students at exam time, alternately cramming and slacking. Possibly, they work this way because it is the most productive way to work. Most of us would assume that a farmer who started farming at 9 A.M. and stopped at 5 P.M. five days a week was strange, and probably not a very good farmer. Through the better part of human history, jobs from warrior to fisherperson to novelist had a cram-and-slack rhythm, in part because these jobs were shaped by actual productive needs, not arbitrary working clocks and managerial oversight. Graeber laments a situation in which it’s “perfectly natural for free citizens of democratic countries to rent themselves out in this way, or for a boss to become indignant if employees are not working every moment of ‘his’ time.” Still, it’s likely that he overstates the pleasures of the freelance life.

      • MedforthAn inmate is beaten up in French prison for not obeying Ramadan. “It is an everyday reality. Some don’t eat pork anymore because they are pressured”

        A few hours later, a second brawl broke out in the visitors’ waiting room. The result: a laceration to the mouth and a concussion. One prisoner had to be evacuated to hospital. He claimed to have been beaten up by another inmate who accused him of not observing Ramadan. “This is a daily reality. Some people don’t eat pork any more because they are put under pressure,” Pierre Grousset stresses.

      • Frontpage MagazineKafir! Islam’s hateful and ugly word for all non-Muslims

        As discussed here, because the daily newspaper that published this fatwa, al-Masry al-Youm, has long been seen as a progressive, reformist newspaper—one that thrives on exposing and combatting Islamist intolerance—its readership, which includes not a few Coptic Christians, responded in uproar. Hours later, the online version of the paper deleted the fatwa, suspended its editor, and issued an apology.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • TechdirtStates Could Easily Flub Billions In Potential Broadband Funding

        The U.S. is about to spend an historic $42.5 billion on expanding affordable broadband access courtesy of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). While this spending is largely being organized by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), much of it involves grants that will need to be managed by the states.

      • Board level changes at IFF

        We note that Raman Jit Singh Chima, a seasoned policy professional and a global expert on digital rights, stepped down from his role as a Trustee from April 24, 2022. Raman has been our colleague serving side by side helping IFF’s growth from the very beginning.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • The AtlanticThe Netflix Bubble Is Finally Bursting

        The quarter’s decline could have been dismissed as a hiccup, because Netflix has suspended operations in Russia, but the future projections suggest that this is no aberration. Instead, the company is signaling a crackdown on password-sharing alongside that ad-supported subscription plan, looking for ways to drum up revenue that go beyond simply adding new viewers. Perhaps even more significant, CFO Spencer Neumann said that the company was going to begin “pulling back” some of its spending on TV and movies, suggesting that the days of Netflix writing massive checks for obscure passion projects could be over. The company has broken into the awards conversation in recent years by bringing in top-tier directors and funding projects that traditional studios had balked at, such as Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman and David Fincher’s Mank. Though it has yet to win a Best Picture Oscar, Netflix has been a powerhouse for grown-up movies not worried about having big opening weekends. But that bubble might be about to burst.

    • Monopolies

      • Trademarks

        • TechdirtStone Brewing, Sycamore Brewing Now Battling It Out Over Preliminary Injunction

          Now this one surprises me. We’ve been talking recently about a trademark infringement suit brought against Stone Brewing by Sycamore Brewing, a much smaller brewery. Fresh off a massive win against Molson Coors over its decision to alter the branding for Key Stone beer to feature the word “stone” in very big letters, Stone Brewing found itself on the other side of a lawsuit. Sycamore has a registered trademark on the slogan “Keep It Juicy” for one of its beers… and Stone Brewing recently began using that same slogan in a style that is, well, extremely similar to that of Sycamore’s usage. How similar? Well…

      • Copyrights

        • Walled CultureCopyright industry demands Finland’s version of upload filters should be more unbalanced

          The copyright industry is not content with helping to push through the worst copyright law in recent memory, but even at this late stage is trying to make it more unbalanced. Also notable is the almost complete absence of any input from members of the public during this process, or any serious attempt to protect their fundamental rights – a selfishness that is so typical of the copyright world.

        • Torrent FreakBing Removed 143 Million ‘Pirate’ Site URLs Last Year

          In response to DMCA takedown requests, Bing removed more than 143 million links from its search engine in 2021. This represents a small increase compared to a year earlier. Interestingly, those piracy-related removals in Bing also impact the results of other search engines.

        • Torrent FreakMan Who Lost $90m Pirate IPTV Suit Slams DISH in Response to New Lawsuit

          A former operator of SetTV, a pirate IPTV service ordered to pay $90m in damages to DISH Network, has slammed the company after it filed a new lawsuit against him. Jason LaBossiere claims he's innocent and the broadcaster will "stop at nothing to bully people into settlements"

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