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Hometown: PA
Home country: USA
Current location: DC
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 07:36 PM
Number of posts: 39,497

About Me

If an H-1b has an American accent, they are probably not an H-1b. It's race, not citizenship. Americans are more diverse than you think. Millions of US citizens don't look the way you might expect. This fact is very important and will help us win elections.

Journal Archives

Here are six costly failures from Americas longest war. No. 1: Cashmere goats.


President Trump on Monday announced an increase of troops in Afghanistan, taking the reins of a conflict where 8,500 personnel are mostly focused on buttressing their Afghan counterparts in the face of Taliban and Islamic State gains.

“I share the American people’s frustration,” he said. “I also share their frustration over a foreign policy that has spent too much time, energy, money — and, most importantly, lives — trying to rebuild countries in our own image instead of pursuing our security interests above all other considerations.”

The Defense Department, the State Department, the U.S. Agency for International Development and other agencies have spent $714 billion of war and reconstruction funding since the invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001 to bolster education programs, improve infrastructure and increase the competency of Afghan security forces.

Insurgents have deliberately targeted U.S.-led projects, including schools and roads, with hopes of dividing the population. That has come at a considerable expense to American taxpayers.

$6 million: Cashmere goats

The aim was to jump start Afghanistan’s cashmere industry and grow its profile on the international market. A Pentagon task force funded the purchase and transport of nine rare Italian goats to breed with those native to Afghanistan, hoping that this would improve the animals’ undercoats and the quality of the cashmere they yield.

As part of the project, a farm was built along with a lab facility where staff would certify the cashmere’s quality. All of this was funded by U.S. taxpayers.

The goats died.
Unused command center that the military didn't want but Congress decided the needed anyway.
Expensive uniforms that looks nice but aren't very tactical.
Embezzled funding that was meant for schools but went to warlords instead.
Afghan poppy for heroin
Wasted cargo planes
plus lots of corruption and mismanagement and grifters getting rich off of this for the wrong reasons

We need to talk about the online radicalisation of young, white women


Alt-right women are less visible than their tiki torch-carrying male counterparts - but they still exist.

In November 2016, the writer and TED speaker Siyanda Mohutsiwa tweeted a ground-breaking observation. “When we talk about online radicalisation we always talk about Muslims. But the radicalisation of white men online is at astronomical levels,” she wrote, inspiring a series of mainstream articles on the topic (“We need to talk about the online radicalisation of young, white men,” wrote Abi Wilkinson in The Guardian). It is now commonly accepted that online radicalisation is not limited to the work of Isis, which uses social media to spread propaganda and recruit new members. Young, white men frequently form alt-right and neo-Nazi beliefs online.

But this narrative, too, is missing something. When it comes to online radicalisation into extreme right-wing, white supremacist, or racist views, women are far from immune.

“It’s a really slow process to be brainwashed really,” says Alexandra*, a 22-year-old former-racist who adopted extreme views during the United States presidential election of 2016. In particular, she believed white people to be more intelligent than people of colour. “It definitely felt like being indoctrinated into a cult.”

Alexandra was “indoctrinated” on 4Chan, the imageboard site where openly racist views flourish, especially on boards such as /pol/. It is a common misconception that 4Chan is only used by loser, basement-dwelling men. In actuality, 4Chan’s official figures acknowledge 30 percent of its users are female. More women may frequent 4Chan and /pol/ than it first appears, as many do not announce their gender on the site because of its “Tits or GTFO” culture. Even when women do reveal themselves, they are often believed to be men who are lying for attention.

“There are actually a lot of females on 4chan, they just don't really say. Most of the time it just isn't relevant,” says Alexandra. Her experiences on the site are similar to male users who are radicalised by /pol/’s far-right rhetoric. “They sowed the seeds of doubt with memes,” she laughs apprehensively. “Dumb memes and stuff and jokes…

As a POC, I've seen quite often online that people are assumed to be white until proven otherwise. Apparently online people are assumed to be male until proven otherwise also. Radicalized white supremacist women seem to fly under the radar in many cases. It also seems to baffle people how women would join ISIS but it appears they use similar tactics to slowly brainwash people through social media. There is a lot of stuff happening behind the scenes that we don't see, as it's not all tiki torches and beatings.

The article shares the story of a former nazi who shares how she got pulled into it and how she got out after prison.

Texas Babysitter Coerced 4-Year-Old Boy To Perform Sex Acts On Her: Police


An 18-year-old babysitter in San Antonio, Texas, has been arrested and charged with aggravated sexual assault, according to local reports.

Police say Esmeralda Medellin performed sexual acts on a 4-year-old boy while babysitting him in March. She allegedly coerced the child to perform sexual acts on her, as well.

Citing the arrest affidavit, The San Antonio Express-News reported that the child alerted his mother to the alleged sexual assault while Medellin was still in their home on March 28. The mother immediately called police, and both the boy and Medellin were taken to the hospital to undergo a sexual assault examination ― the results of which were released on Wednesday and appeared to confirm the child’s account of the assault, reported WOAI-TV.

The boy’s DNA was found on Medellin’s breast, according to Express-News, adding that “male DNA was also found on her genitals, but the sample was not sufficient enough to make a positive comparison.”


Donald Trump Cares About Irreplaceable Objects, Except When He Doesnt


For someone so concerned with “beautiful statues,” Trump seems to have forgotten his own track record with historic artifacts.

“The beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed,” Trump said in response, “and never able to be comparably replaced!”

To build his skyscraper, Trump demolished the Bonwit Teller building, which was erected in 1929 and included a historically significant Art Deco relief. The Metropolitan Museum of Art was reportedly interested in preserving the artwork around the time of the building’s demolition, and, according to a 1980 report from the NYT, Trump originally agreed to donate them to the museum as long as the price wasn’t too high.

It turned out, however, the price was too high ($32,000). Instead of preserving and gifting the reliefs, Trump ordered demolition workers to jackhammer them and shatter the remains. Allegedly posing as his fake spokesperson John Baron, Trump described the relief to the NYT as being “without artistic merit,” adding “the merit of these stones was not great enough to justify the effort to save them.”

Members of the art world, however, strongly disagreed, with gallery owner Robert Miller describing the loss as “tragic.” As Ashton Hawkins, vice president and secretary of the Board of Trustees at the Met put it, “Can you imagine the museum accepting them if they were not of artistic merit?”

Trump was once again accused of scrapping historical remains during the transformation of a landmark post office in Washington, D.C., into a “super luxury” Trump Hotel. Six blocks from the White House, the building is “considered an architectural masterpiece,” the NYT explained in 2016. “Built in the Romanesque Revival style, it dates to 1899; it is the tallest high-rise federal building in the city.”

Dude's architect resigned in protest over the destruction of historical elements instead of preservation.

Chinese food in India -- a fiery fusion of flavors


While the Chinese have been visiting India for millennia in search of Buddhist teachings, Yang Tai Chow was the first recorded Chinese to migrate to India for better material prospects. In 1778, he put down roots in Kolkata. Known at the time as Calcutta, it was the then-capital of British India and the most easily accessible metropolitan area from China by land.

Over the years, many like him came, mostly Hakkas, and by the early part of the 20th century, a Chinatown had developed in Kolkata and it thrived and buzzed with enterprise. Chinese served with distinction as dentists, tannery owners, sauce manufacturers, beauticians and shoe shop owners, but it was as restaurateurs that the Chinese found their fame and glory in India.

As all immigrant communities tend to do, the Chinese assimilated Indian sensibilities and beliefs. They even acknowledged one of our goddesses, Kali, as their own, and offered noodles, chop suey, rice and vegetable dishes in rituals as a sign of unity.

And so it was with food that the Sino-Indian cultural fusion began.

About 85 years ago, the Indian culinary world was affected by a new cuisine. The first Indo Chinese restaurant Eau Chew opened in Kolkata. Presumably hordes came out satiated and impressed, beaming their approval to the next lot of people who hadn't tried this new fangled cuisine of foreign origin, yet spicy and tasty like their own.

While Americanized Chinese food went deep fried and sweet, Indianized Chinese food went deep fried and spicy and included more vegetarian options. It's gotten so popular that US cities with large Indian populations have Indian Chinese restaurants.

Tina Fey urges Americans: Stay home from neo-Nazi rallies. Eat a sheet cake instead.


Tina Fey is fuming about last weekend’s violence in Charlottesville, home to her alma mater, the University of Virginia.

In response, the former “Saturday Night Live” comedian and writer is spearheading a movement: “sheetcaking.”

In a surprise appearance on SNL’s “Weekend Update: Summer Edition” Thursday night, Fey urged Americans not to get into screaming matches with neo-Nazis. Instead, she said, “order a cake with the American flag on it … and just eat it.”

She proceeded to stuff her face with sheet cake as she bashed white supremacists, President Trump, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan and conservative pundit Ann Coulter (“yard-sale Barbie”).

With her mouth full of frosting, she seemed to capture the frustration of many Americans in the past week. Almost immediately, the hashtags “#sheetcakemovement” and “#sheetcaking” began circulating on social media.


Tina Fey

Young Indian engineers leave Silicon Valley to find success back in India


Each year, tens of thousands of Indian students head to the U.S. in order to get a college degree, find a job and pursue the American Dream.

But as India's economy booms and the U.S. continues to tighten its immigration policies, many of these young Indian professionals are making their way back home instead.

Natasha Jain, 28, is one of them.

Originally from Ambala in Northern India, she graduated with a master's degree from Stanford University in 2012, landed a good-paying job in Silicon Valley and even started her own company. But she struggled with the constraints of the U.S. visa system and eventually gave it all up.

"Within just three years of moving back [to India], I have been able to establish a tech startup and manufacturing business and create many job opportunities," said Jain. "All of this would have been harder for me to do as a foreigner living in the U.S."

India's fast-growing $2 trillion economy means there are more opportunities for Indians like Jain to find work or start their own ventures. The Indian government, too, is aggressively courting non-resident Indians with programs such as Startup India, designed to ease bureaucratic restrictions and provide funding.

But there's also an undercurrent of nervousness and anxiety that is spurring more Indian expatriates to return home as well.

Some people don't want to get shot.

The day 30,000 white supremacists in KKK robes marched in the nations capital


The Ku Klux Klan was at the height of its popularity when more than 30,000 members — racists and anti-Semites marching 22 abreast and 14 rows deep – paraded down Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington on Aug. 8, 1925.

“White-robed Klan cheered on march in nation’s capital,” read the front-page headline in The Washington Post the next day.

The gathering dwarfed the hundreds of white nationalists, Klan members and neo-Nazis who descended on Charlottesville Saturday to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. The rally turned into a riot as the white supremacists clashed with counterprotests, leaving 32-year-old Heather Heyer dead and many others injured.

Nearly a century ago, the Klan was welcomed to segregated Washington by its white residents, as the breathless coverage in The Post demonstrated.

“Phantom-like hosts of the Ku Klux Klan spread their white robe over the most historic thoroughfare yesterday in one of the greatest demonstrations this city has ever known,” read The Post’s account.

This was the time period when the United Daughters of the Confederacy put up statues and monuments all across America, including states with no confederate history.

It was also the time when a fine progressive Democrat from the North decided to fire black federal employees mainly in manager or supervisor positions and implement segregation in federal departments under the pretext of rape prevention. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/jimcrow/stories_events_segregation.html

Why there are Confederate statues in states that weren't in the Confederacy?


The inscription on the Confederate Memorial Fountain in Helena, Montana, says it “sits in longing tribute to our Confederate soldiers.” But there are a few things wrong with the monument, a granite fountain erected in 1916 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy: Montana didn’t have any Confederate dead. It didn’t have any Union dead. That’s because there was no Montana during the Civil War.

Helena’s fountain isn’t alone. As of 2016, at least 22 of the over 1,500 Confederate memorials scattered across the United States sit in areas that weren’t even part of the U.S. when the Confederacy existed, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Dozens more live in states that operated under split governments during the Civil War, like Kentucky, which contributed half as many Confederate soldiers as Union soldiers to the fighting but which now hosts 56 Confederate memorials and just two Union ones (the mayor of Lexington, Kentucky, is taking steps to remove two Confederate statues from the city).

But the existence of these monuments is less a testament to what actually happened in the Civil War or the heritage of the Confederacy than the fervor to rewrite the telling of the war decades after, when a flurry of monument-building filled the landscape with landmarks, even where they have a dubious connection to actual history.

“There was a really big systematic push to promote the history of the Confederacy and the so-called ‘‘lost cause’ that was largely engineered by women’s groups like the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which had a very overt and systematic plan to rewrite textbooks, to erect public monuments that would establish the ‘true’ history of the war,” said Kirk Savage, an expert on Confederate monuments and their role in collective memory.

Many of these statues don't have any connection to local history and were put up many decades after the civil war ended. It's not like people who lose a war are rushing to build monuments to remember their crushing loss.

It's interesting that the state that elected the first woman to the US Congress also decided they needed a confederate monument around the same time. Montana didn't exist during the civil war. It wasn't even a territory then.

Wealthy racists can put these monuments in their private museums if they want.

I was wrong: U-Va. newspaper editor says he was naive about alt-right (1st amendment supporters)


Weeks before violent protests in Charlottesville turned to tragedy, Brendan Novak wrote a column in the University of Virginia student newspaper arguing that the city “should let the alt-right rally occur.”

In the column, Novak, an opinion editor at the Cavalier Daily, defended the constitutional rights of the white supremacist groups to assemble and express their views. He wrote that the city — and Black Lives Matter — should allow the “alt-right” to protest openly, and “watch as the rotting ideological foundation collapses under its own weight.”

After all, he thought, how could a “universally loathed” group with “downright repulsive views” thrive in the face of an inclusive and tolerant society?

But then, on Friday night, Novak, an incoming sophomore at U-Va., watched from his family’s home in Arlington videos of white nationalists marching through his campus with flaming torches, shouting racist taunts.

He realized in that moment that Saturday morning’s rally was “a disaster waiting to happen.” He stayed up late into the night, coming to terms with the scale — and severity — of the event, which would conclude with three people dead by the end of the weekend, a woman struck by a car that plowed through a crowd and two state police officers who died in a helicopter crash.

Charlottesville has had several KKK and nazi rallies this year. I get the temptation to support the first amendment rights of views we don't like, but not when it is advocating violence, death, and hate crimes. It should be easier for people to draw the line, and understand when it was crossed.

"directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandenburg_v._Ohio (KKK case)
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