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Eugene's Journal
Eugene's Journal
August 5, 2019

8chan's new internet host was kicked off its own host just hours later

EDIT: Excerpt added.


Source: TechCrunch

8chan’s new internet host was kicked off its own host just hours later

Devin Coldewey@techcrunch / 2 hours ago

The bottom-feeding forum 8chan, which grew popular by embracing fringe hateful internet cultures, is having trouble staying online. After Cloudflare dropped its protection of the site yesterday, 8chan adopted the services of Bitmitigate, but soon lost that too as the company providing Bitmitigate with services dropped them. Deplatforming works, but it can be complicated, so here’s a quick explanation of what these pieces are and why we’re witnessing this hot-potato act in the wake of the latest tragic mass shootings.


When 8chan lost Cloudflare, it was exposed to the full force of the internet, likely including DDoS and other attacks, and was brought offline. But it soon found a new caching service in Bitmitigate.


So 8chan went to Bitmitigate, but it wasn’t long before the forum had that rug pulled out from under them as well. Turns out that Epik and Bitmitigate were purchasing services from a larger service provider called Voxility.

If this sounds over-complicated, just think of it this way: A cafe needs to provide internet to its customers, so it buys a high-speed connection from an ISP. Then it provides access to that connection to its customers using its own little portal or control method, maybe so you have to buy a coffee before you can get online. This is a bit like that: Epik was reselling the services of Voxility at a markup to a specific set of customers. It’s a common enough thing online, but as we saw today, a bit risky.

Turns out Voxility wants no part of hosting 8chan, and after being alerted (by former Facebook CSO Alex Stamos) that one of its clients had decided to do so, it simply pulled the plug on Epik’s services; right now Bitmitigate, Daily Stormer and 8chan are all down. They deplatformed the platform.


Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/05/8chans-new-internet-host-was-kicked-off-its-own-host-just-hours-later/


August 1, 2019

Amazon deforestation: Bolsonaro government accused of seeking to sow doubt over data

Source: The Guardian

Amazon deforestation: Bolsonaro government accused of seeking to sow doubt over data

Ministers look at setting up alternative monitoring scheme as existing system shows alarming rise in clearance rates

Jonathan Watts
Thu 1 Aug 2019 02.59 BST Last modified on Thu 1 Aug 2019 18.30 BST

The Amazon forest is being burned and chopped down at the most alarming rate in recent memory, but the Brazilian government of Jair Bolsonaro is focused on reinterpreting the data rather than dealing with the culprits, monitoring groups have said.

At a clearance rate equivalent to a Manhattan island every day, deforestation in July was almost twice as fast as the worst month ever recorded by the current satellite monitoring system, which is managed by the government’s National Institute for Space Research.

Over the single month, the latest data shows destruction of more than 1,800 square kilometres, which is pushing the world’s biggest rainforest towards an irreversible tipping point and eroding a globally essential sink for carbon dioxide.

After an international outcry, the Brazilian government – which is closely aligned with the loggers, miners and farmers responsible for most of the forest loss – held a special meeting on Wednesday of ministers and senior officials from the environment ministry, the science and technology ministry, and agencies responsible for satellites and forest protection.

The primary topic, according to several sources, was a review of the data collection system, which has come under attack from Bolsonaro and other ministers who have been embarrassed by the evidence from their own government that Brazil is moving in the opposite direction from the deforestation control commitments it made as a signatory to the Paris climate treaty.


Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/01/amazon-deforestation-bolsonaro-government-accused-doubt-data

August 1, 2019

Doctors urge probe of child migrant deaths: 'Poor conditions' at border increase risk of spreading f

Source: Washington Post

Doctors urge probe of child migrant deaths: ‘Poor conditions’ at border increase risk of spreading flu

By Robert Moore August 1 at 7:17 AM

EL PASO — A group of doctors from Harvard and Johns Hopkins has urged Congress to investigate the deaths of six migrant children who were held in government custody after crossing the southern border in the past year, warning that “poor conditions” at U.S. facilities are increasing the risk of spreading deadly infectious diseases, especially the flu.

The doctors, who wrote to Congress on Thursday, said autopsy reports show that at least three of the children — ages 2, 6 and 16 — died in part as a result of having the flu, a far higher incidence of such deaths than across the general population. Child flu deaths are rare, the doctors said, and should be preventable.

“Poor conditions at the facilities may be amplifying the spread of influenza and other infectious diseases, increasing health risks to children,” according to the letter, submitted by Harvard pediatrics professor Jonathan Winickoff; Johns Hopkins public health professors Joshua Sharfstein and Paul Siegel and two of their master’s students; and San Francisco forensic pathologist Judy Melinek. “With so many lives at risk, these issues are worthy of congressional investigation. Another influenza season is around the corner, and there are other types of infectious diseases that pose a threat to detained populations. Timely action is critical.”

The letter, dated Thursday, alleges that the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services — which supervises longer-term custody of unaccompanied migrant minors — might not be following best practices in regard to screening, treatment, isolation and prevention of the flu.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/immigration/doctors-urge-probe-of-child-migrant-deaths-poor-conditions-at-border-increase-risk-of-spreading-flu/2019/08/01/0bf86b06-b445-11e9-8f6c-7828e68cb15f_story.html

July 30, 2019

ACLU: U.S. has taken nearly 1,000 child migrants from their parents since judge ordered stop to bord

Source: Washington Post

ACLU: U.S. has taken nearly 1,000 child migrants from their parents since judge ordered stop to border separations

By Maria Sacchetti July 30 at 4:03 PM

Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union told a federal judge Tuesday that the Trump administration has taken nearly 1,000 migrant children from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border since the judge ordered the United States government to curtail the practice more than a year ago.

In a lengthy court filing in U.S. District Court in San Diego, lawyers wrote that one migrant lost his daughter because a U.S. Border Patrol agent claimed that he had failed to change the girl’s diaper. Another migrant lost his child because of a conviction on a charge of malicious destruction of property with alleged damage of $5. One father, who lawyers say has a speech impediment, was separated from his 4-year-old son because he could not clearly answer Customs and Border Protection agents’ questions.

Acting Homeland Security secretary Kevin McAleenan has said that family separations remain “extraordinarily rare” and happen only when the adults pose a risk to the child because of their criminal record, a communicable disease, abuse or neglect. Of tens of thousands of children taken into custody at the border, 911 children were separated since the June 26, 2018, court order as of June 29, according to the ACLU, which cited statistics the organization received from the government as part of ongoing legal proceedings.

While the judge recognized that parents and children might still be separated when a parent is found to pose a risk to their child, the ACLU and others say federal immigration and border agents are splitting up families for minor alleged offenses — including traffic violations — and urged the judge Tuesday to clarify when such separations should be allowed.

Approximately 20 percent of the new separations affected children under 5 years old, the ACLU said, compared with about 4 percent last year.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/immigration/aclu-us-has-taken-nearly-1000-child-migrants-from-their-parents-since-judge-ordered-stop-to-border-separations/2019/07/30/bde452d8-b2d5-11e9-8949-5f36ff92706e_story.html

July 30, 2019

Border Patrol detains adults with no end - until lawyers sue

Source: Associated Press

Border Patrol detains adults with no end - until lawyers sue

July 30, 2019

HOUSTON (AP) — In early June, twin brothers from Guatemala let their sister in California know they were about to cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Then they vanished for almost a month.

She couldn’t find them in online databases and the local Guatemalan consulate had no information. She feared they had been kidnapped or killed.

It took three weeks to find them: inside jam-packed U.S. Border Patrol cells in South Texas, with no access to phones or lawyers. One of them was inside the fenced-in pens that Vice President Mike Pence visited in July. Only after the lawyers sued were both brothers transferred out.

It’s a pattern that immigration lawyers say has repeated itself for several weeks: Adults are detained in packed Border Patrol cells — malnourished, poorly treated and incommunicado — only to be moved within hours once the government is sued on their behalf.

One group of lawyers has filed lawsuits on behalf of the spouses, siblings and relatives of 18 migrants — all of whom were removed from their cells almost immediately.

The lawyers believe the government is trying to avoid a federal judge issuing a sweeping order that would require the release of potentially thousands of people detained by the Border Patrol or changes to improve the conditions in cells that government inspectors and advocates have said are squalid.


Read more: https://apnews.com/4a7225271a03434db2634c3ac95fdc60
July 27, 2019

The Arctic's on fire and now it's going to be hit by a heat wave

Also: Europe’s heat wave is about to bake the Arctic (Washington Post)


Source: ThinkProgress

The Arctic’s on fire and now it’s going to be hit by a heat wave

Things aren't looking good.

JUL 27, 2019, 10:20 AM

Europe’s historic heat wave is heading north this weekend, to the relief of the continent, but its path will send it right towards the Arctic — where it could speed up the melting of sea ice and coincide with devastating wildfires.

Unprecedented wildfires are currently raging across the Arctic Circle, with some the size of 100,000 football fields — so big they can be seen from space. Arctic sea ice is moreover already running at a record low this year; scientists worry a heat wave will only further exacerbate the area’s problems.

One week after the United States saw record-shattering high temperatures, the same fate befell Europe. On Thursday, Paris saw temperatures of 108.7 degrees Fahrenheit (42.6 degrees Celsius), a record high, with Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands also facing their own record days. The sweltering weather is the result of a heat dome that has allowed hot air to come north from the Sahara Desert, all while blocking cooler air from reaching people.

July is typically a warm month in much of the northern hemisphere, but climate scientists have connected the uptick in dangerously hot temperatures to global warming, with future years set to be much worse.


Read more: https://thinkprogress.org/arctic-fire-heat-wave-europe-climate-change-melting-bad-89735ea2c172/


Source: Washington Post

Europe’s heat wave is about to bake the Arctic

Concerns grow regarding sea ice and Greenland’s ice sheet.

By Andrew Freedman July 26 at 12:12 PM

On Friday, more temperature records are falling in Europe as the historic heat wave that brought the hottest weather ever recorded in Paris, London, the United Kingdom, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany shifts northward. In a few days, the weather system responsible for the heat wave will stretch all the way across the top of the globe.

It’s what this system, characterized by a strong area of high pressure aloft — often referred to as a heat dome — will do to the Arctic that has some scientists increasingly concerned.

Norway, Sweden and Finland will experience unusually high temperatures through the weekend, as a potentially record strong area of high pressure in the mid-levels of the atmosphere sets up over the region, blocking any cold fronts or other storm systems from moving into the area, like a traffic light in the sky.

Temperatures in parts of Scandinavia will reach into the 90s or higher, on the heels of an intense heat wave in 2018 that led to an outbreak of damaging wildfires.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/07/26/europes-heat-wave-is-about-bake-arctic/

July 23, 2019

Hundreds of black deaths in Red Summer ignored century later

Source: Associated Press

Hundreds of black deaths in Red Summer ignored century later

July 23, 2019

America in the summer of 1919 ran red with blood from racial violence, and yet today, 100 years later, not many people know it even happened.

It flowed in small towns like Elaine, Arkansas, in medium-size places such as Annapolis, Maryland, and Syracuse, New York, and in big cities like Washington and Chicago. Hundreds of African American men, women and children were burned alive, shot, lynched or beaten to death by white mobs. Thousands saw their homes and businesses burned to the ground and were driven out, many never to return.

It was branded “Red Summer” because of the bloodshed and amounted to some of the worst white-on-black violence in U.S. history.

Beyond the lives and family fortunes lost, it had far-reaching repercussions, contributing to generations of black distrust of white authority. But it also galvanized blacks to defend themselves and their neighborhoods with fists and guns; reinvigorated civil rights organizations like the NAACP and led to a new era of activism; gave rise to courageous reporting by black journalists; and influenced the generation of leaders who would take up the fight for racial equality decades later.

“The people who were the icons of the civil rights movement were raised by the people who survived Red Summer,” said Saje Mathieu, a history professor at the University of Minnesota.


Read more: https://apnews.com/d7830d62a99f4cdd8f0a0d08cefb92c5

In this 1919 photo provided by Chicago History Museum, a crowd of men and armed National Guard stand in front of the Ogden Cafe during race riots in Chicago. Red Summer, as the summer of 1919 came to be known, saw white-on-black violence in big cities like Washington and Chicago and small towns like Elaine, Ark., and Bisbee, Ariz. (Chicago History Museum/The Jun Fujita negatives collection via AP)

A white gang hunting African Americans during the Chicago race riot of 1919
July 23, 2019

WP Ed. Board: Trump attacks 'socialists' at home, but in Hong Kong he just sided with the Communists

Source: Washington Post

Trump attacks ‘socialists’ at home, but in Hong Kong he just sided with the Communists

By Editorial Board July 22 at 7:37 PM

CHINESE OFFICIALS and state media were in high dudgeon Monday about minor acts of vandalism following the latest mass demonstration in Hong Kong. Protesters who threw eggs at China’s liaison office and splashed ink on the state emblem “trample on the rule of law,” roared a front-page editorial in the People’s Daily.

Yet Beijing had little to say about the genuinely shocking incident that followed: an assault by an organized group of men on people returning from the demonstration. Journalists, an opposition legislator and bystanders were among at least 45 people savagely beaten with wooden canes and metal rods by thugs dressed in white — apparently to distinguish themselves from black-clad protesters. Police were slow to respond and took no action against the vigilantes.

The high-voltage rhetoric and ugly violence were signs that the regime of Xi Jinping is shedding restraints in its response to the mass movement that has emerged in Hong Kong this summer to defend the city’s autonomy and demand greater freedoms. It means that, more than ever, Hong Kong’s people need the support of established democracies.

Unfortunately, President Trump on Monday sided with the dictatorship. Asked to react to Sunday’s events, the president explicitly endorsed the Xi regime’s behavior. “I think President Xi has reacted very responsibly,” he told reporters. “He’s allowed [the protests] to go on for a long time.”

In essence, Mr. Trump all but offered Mr. Xi an invitation to crack down on a movement that is fighting for liberal values such as free speech and the rule of law. The protests began in reaction to a proposed extradition law that would have undermined Hong Kong’s independent courts and allowed China to pursue its enemies in the city. When the measure was shelved, the marches continued as opposition leaders called for an investigation of police violence.


Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/hong-kong-needs-support-from-democracies-trump-sided-with-the-dictatorship/2019/07/22/bbbe2e5e-ac9d-11e9-8e77-03b30bc29f64_story.html


This is far from the first time Trump has embraced a dictator's idea of order. He repeatedly call the Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests a riot, not to mention his love affair with Kim Jong-un.

July 17, 2019

Census plaintiffs seek sanctions against Trump administration for trial 'fraud'

Source: Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Civil rights groups who successfully blocked the Trump administration from adding a citizenship question to the 2020 U.S. census are seeking sanctions against government officials, saying they brazenly hid the truth about the inquiry’s origins during trial.

In court papers filed on Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union asked New York federal Judge Jesse Furman to grant new discovery into the alleged misconduct, as well as monetary sanctions for the government’s “concerted campaign of delay and obfuscation” during trial last November.

The request follows President Donald Trump’s announcement last week that he would abandon plans to ask respondents to the 2020 census whether they are U.S. citizens, after the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the question in June.


They cited on Tuesday a laundry list of “false or misleading” testimonies that amounted to “fraud on the court,” perpetrated by U.S. Department of Commerce Deputy Chief of Staff Earl Comstock, Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore, Commerce attorney James Uthmeier, and U.S. Census Bureau official Christa Jones, among others.


July 16, 2019 / 7:03 PM / Updated 3 hours ago
Nick Brown

Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-census-lawsuit/census-plaintiffs-seek-sanctions-against-trump-administration-for-trial-fraud-idUSKCN1UB2UB

July 8, 2019

SunTrust to stop financing companies that manage private prisons

Source: Reuters


SunTrust to stop financing companies that manage private prisons

Imani Moise

NEW YORK (Reuters) - SunTrust Banks Inc (STI.N) said on Monday it will not provide future financing to companies that manage private prisons and immigration holding facilities, becoming the latest lender to distance itself from a sector that has become tied to the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

“This decision was made after extensive consideration of the views of our stakeholders on this deeply complex issue,” the Atlanta-based company said in a statement.

SunTrust is one of several banks that have underwritten bonds or syndicated loans for at least one of the major private prison operators in the United States, CoreCivic Inc and GEO Group Inc.

In 2018, banks, including Bank of America Corp (BAC.N) and Wells Fargo & Co (WFC.N), raised roughly $1.8 billion in debt over three deals for CoreCivic and GEO Group, according to Refinitiv data.


Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-suntrust-banks-prison/suntrust-to-stop-financing-companies-that-manage-private-prisons-idUSKCN1U31WV

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