Common Sense Media’s ready-made resources help teachers — and families — nurture responsible digital citizens
The New York Times reports on the Saudi Arabia's efforts to control online dissent using what is fast becoming one of the most reliable tools of autocracies worldwide: A government-run army of social media trolls. Saudi operatives have mobilized to harass critics on Twitter, a wildly popular platform for news in the kingdom since the Arab Spring uprisings began in 2010. Saud al-Qahtani, a top adviser to Crown Prince Mohammed who was fired on Saturday in the fallout from Mr. Khashoggi’s killing, was the strategist behind the operation, according to United States and Saudi officials, as well as activist organizations. Many Saudis had hoped that Twitter would democratize discourse by giving everyday citizens a voice, but Saudi Arabia has instead become an illustration of how authoritarian governments can manipulate social media to silence or drown out critical voices while spreading their own version of reality. [...] One arm of the crackdown on dissidents originates from offices and homes in and around Riyadh, where hundreds of young men hunt on Twitter for voices and conversations to silence. This is the troll farm, described by three people briefed on the project and the messages among group members. Its directors routinely discuss ways to combat dissent, settling on sensitive themes like the war in Yemen or women’s rights. They then turn to their well-organized army of “social media specialists” via group chats in apps like WhatsApp and Telegram, sending them lists of people to threaten, insult and intimidate; daily tweet quotas to fill; and pro-government messages to augment. TOP COMMENTS • HIGH IMPACT STORIES • THE WEEK’S HIGH IMPACT STORIES TWEET OF THE DAY xMiami Herald Editorial Board recommends Andrew Gillum for FL governor | Miami HeraldThe Miami Herald endorses Andrew Gillum (& Bill Nelson) https://t.co/UeBSVjrk85— Steven Hanvey (@RantsFromStevo) October 21, 2018 BLAST FROM THE PAST On this date at Daily Kos in 2013—Bush not Cheney's puppet, Peter Baker's new book says. Iraq invasion done to kick 'somebody's ass': For more than a decade, ever since Dick Cheney used his assignment to select a vice presidential candidate for George W. Bush to pick himself, the conventional wisdom has been that the former secretary of defense and former CEO of Halliburton pulled Bush's strings. In 2008, for example, Barton Gellman and Jo Becker of the Washington Post won a Pulitzer prize for their four-part 2007 series—Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency that reinforced the view of Bush as willing and weak-willed marionette. Peter Baker's 650-page new book—Days of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House—presents a different view of the relationship between Bush and Cheney. Baker, who covered the Bush administration first for the Washington Post and subsequently The New York Times (where he is now chief White House correspondent), agrees that Cheney was the «most powerful vice president» of modern times. But he does not present George Bush as second-in-command to the imperious Cheney […] As one senior official who came to rue his involvement in Iraq put it, “The only reason we went into Iraq, I tell people now, is we were looking for somebody’s ass to kick. Afghanistan was too easy.” That may well be the unnamed senior adviser's perspective, but this we-did-Iraq-to-prove-our-manhood assertion doesn't mesh well with the reality of the Iraq invasion that other Bush White House insiders—such as former Secretary of the Treasury Paul O'Neill—have confirmed was on the agenda in January 2001. The September 11 assaults on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were a convenient excuse for pinning something on Saddam Hussein, even though he had nothing to do it. It wasn't just «somebody's ass.» Hussein's Iraq was a specific target of the neo-conservative Project for a New American Century long before Cheney, one of its charter members, even considered running for vice president. While Cheney and Bush may well have been at odds, that wasn't enough to stop slaughter in Iraq, torture everywhere and a legacy of tens of thousands of brain-damaged American veterans plus a $3 trillion-plus hole in the Treasury. Monday through Friday you can catch the Kagro in the Morning Show 9 AM ET by dropping in here, or you can download the Stitcher app (found in the app stores or at Stitcher.com), and find a live stream there, by searching for "Netroots Radio.” LINK TO DAILY KOS STORE
Eight years ago, Republicans steamrolled their way to an overwhelming victory in the 2010 midterms. Powered by demonstrable falsehoods about a “government takeover of health care,” Obamacare “death panels,” and Americans being “taxed enough already,” the GOP gained 63 seats and a huge new majority in the House of Representatives. Perhaps the biggest factor in the Republican tidal wave was a monstrous lie about a mythical Democratic threat to Medicare, the health care program now serving almost 60 million Americans. Democrats, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell darkly warned, were planning to pay for Obamacare by “sticking it to seniors with cuts to Medicare.” Then as for years since, future House Speaker Paul Ryan cautioned the elderly about President Obama’s supposed “$800 billion raid on Medicare.” Now, none of it was true. The Affordable Care Act realized hundreds of billions of dollars in savings from Medicare providers, not beneficiaries, savings every subsequent Republican budget (including those from President Trump and Speaker Ryan) have maintained. And even as voters headed to the polls in November 2010, Ryan and his House allies were pushing a voucher scheme to privatize and ration Medicare, the first of many such GOP plans the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) warned would dramatically shift health care costs on to seniors themselves. Nevertheless, the Republican scam to scare seniors worked to perfection. On Election Day 2010, voters ages 55 to 64 and those 65 and over—the GOP’s two most reliable demographics—turned out in force while those under age 30 stayed home. Eight years later, however, Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, and their GOP allies are singing a different tune. Having created trillion-dollar deficits for as far as the eye can see, McConnell this week pledged to take an axe to the programs at the center of the social safety net, especially for older Americans. Ignoring the $1.9 trillion, 10-year price tag for the GOP’s tax cut windfall for the wealthy, the Senate Minority leader declared that Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid” funding constitutes “the real driver of the debt.” As Bloomberg News reported this week: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday blamed rising federal deficits and debt on a bipartisan unwillingness to contain spending on Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, and said he sees little chance of a major deficit reduction deal while Republicans control Congress and the White House. “It’s disappointing but it’s not a Republican problem,” McConnell said. And as Steve Benen detailed, Mitch McConnell has plenty of company among the GOP’s best and brightest:
Unlike normal health care plans, these Trump-approved short-term plans can deny those with pre-existing conditions
Yet health care providers say they have not received enough guidance on how to talk to families on gun safety
Our favorite unplanned White House resident, Donald Trump, railed during a speech to law enforcement that Democrats who had attempted to stop the Supreme Court confirmation of accused serial sexual abuser Brett Kavanaugh were “evil people” because he was proven “totally innocent.” “It was very, very unfair what happened to him,” Trump continued, “false charges, false accusations, horrible statements that were totally untrue that he knew nothing about.” “It was a disgraceful situation brought about by people that are evil,” the president added. “And he toughed it out.” He then repeated these hoax claims during an Air Force One trip which featured Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, while railing at Democrats for even thinking about trying to impeach Kavanaugh for his multiple perjuries. “I’ve been hearing that now they’re thinking about impeaching a brilliant jurist, a man that did nothing wrong, a man that was caught up in a hoax that was set up by the Democrats using the Democrats’ lawyers, and now they want to impeach him,” Trump said. “I’ve heard this from many people. I think it’s an insult to the American public.” Clearly, Kavanaugh was not “proven innocent” since there was no actual investigation of the allegations against him, only a few FBI interviews of several persons who were hand-picked by the White House. However, Trump’s claim about “evil people” is something that should be further explored. For example, let’s compare what happened to Brett Kavanaugh to a person who would willfully commit to being an accessory after the fact to the torture and bone saw murder of a Washington Post journalist simply because he has a pending business deal with the primary suspects. Somehow that seems significantly more “evil” than spreading mean rumors about a sitting federal judge.
That is a lot of water.
Although JJ has been criticized for failing to pay any compensation for its faulty hip implant in India, there are currently no legal provisions to provide compensation to affected patients
The drop in output could force the world#39;s biggest edible oil importer to raise overseas purchases in the 2018/19 marketing year starting from November 1.
The indirect bail out should be limited to preventing a cascading effect of the ILFS collapse, just as Lehman Brothers was allowed to collapse but the system was rescued through the troubled asset relief programme
Petrol margins against Brent crude fell 63 percent from the start of the month to $3.04 a barrel on Thursday, the lowest since August 1, 2016, before recovering to $3.55 a barrel on Friday.
After undertaking a year-long investigation with Ford and four other mobility specialists on how to build self-driving systems that integrate with London’s existing transport infrastructure, Addison Lee today is announcing the next step in its autonomous strategy. The on-demand ride company — which competes with black cabs, Uber and other car services — announced a […]
Ziad Reslan Contributor Share on Twitter More posts by this contributor Elon Musk deserves tougher love from the SEC Solve, MIT’s take on social innovation challenges, may be different enough to work Wael Abbas, a human rights activist focused on police brutality in Egypt has been under arrest since May on charges of spreading fake […]
I can confidently say I could live without my Apple Watch. But I also can confidently say I wouldn’t want to. The fourth-generation Apple Watch is the best, most accessible Apple Watch to date.
When I bought the Nintendo Switch a few months ago, my friends told me to buy Super Mario Odyssey, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. That’s precisely what I did, but none of those games were enough to get me hooked, which is probably for the best. But […]
Die uhr tickt, menschen — the clock is ticking, people. Early-bird pricing on passes to Disrupt Berlin 2018 migrates to parts unknown in just four days. If you want to join us at the Arena Berlin on 29-30 November — and save up to €500 in the process — you need to buy your pass before the […]
DETROIT (AP) - Are we in Oz or what? A life-sized replica of a small ranch house made entirely of mirrors has landed in the neo-classical interior of the old People's State Bank (aka State Savings Bank), at Fort and Shelby in downtown Detroit. Created by Los Angeles filmmaker and ...
PINEWOOD, S.C. (AP) - A Pinewood resident got to do something not a lot of people get to do in their lifetime: hike the entire Appalachian Trail. Paul Wilkinson started on March 18 at Springer Mountain, Georgia, and finished at Mount Katahdin at Baxter State Park in Maine on Sept. ...
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Bluegrass and country star Ricky Skaggs, singer Dottie West and fiddler Johnny Gimble are the newest members of the Country Music Hall of Fame. The three artists were inducted Sunday at the Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, in a ceremony featuring performances from ...
No one will be trick-or-treating in these towns. The residents of these once-thriving places have long gone, leaving behind decaying structures, buildings, vehicles, and even personal belongings, to rot in the elements. But […] The post Photos: Eerie Ghost Towns to Visit (If You Dare) appeared first on Geek.com.
LONDON (AP) - Ryanair has faced criticism after a video posted online apparently showed the airline's crew failing to take action to remove a passenger who launched a racist tirade against a fellow traveler. The video, uploaded to social media by Briton David Lawrence, showed a man hurling racist insults ...
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A North Carolina wildlife facility will not be receiving a one-year-old giraffe as scheduled after an animal park in New York decided to call off the move. Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, New York, had announced in September that Tajiri (tah-JEER'-ee) the giraffe would be moved ...
Blake Bortles is no longer Jacksonville's starting quarterback; not known if he will regain the job
Catanzaro's 59-yard field goal lifts Buccaneers over Browns 26-23 in OT
Saints, Ravens have plenty of reasons to feel upbeat about future following classic game with unexpected ending
Eagles back to underdogs after 21-17 loss to Panthers
Chargers expect injured RB Melvin Gordon to return after bye week
AP PHOTOS: Israeli competitors take the stage for annual body building and fitness competition in Tel Aviv