21 February 2017

So that's what it takes

“He said being gay is a ‘lifestyle choice’, said we should hate Islam, wrote that women should disconnect from the Internet and be restricted from becoming scientists, said Jews run everything, made Holocaust jokes…” “They’re valid points of view.” “He encouraged his fans to harass feminists and trans people.” “That’s just words on the Internet.” “He published people’s private information, photographs of their relatives, their addresses…” “That’s not a crime.” ... Read more

20 February 2017

Making America great again

Post currently spreading virally on Facebook, original author unknown: I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it looks like Trump is actually making America great again. Just look at the progress made since the election: Unprecedented levels of ongoing civic engagement. Millions of Americans now know who their state and federal representatives are without having to google. Millions of Americans are exercising more. They’re holding signs and marching every week. ... Read more

18 February 2017

The Deep State

You might have seen a talking point going around at the moment about the “Deep State”. Timelines are kinda my thing at the moment, so let’s take a look at how the “Deep State is not your friend” meme has snowballed: 16 Feb 2017: New York Times. 15 Feb 2017: The Atlantic. 08 Feb 2016: Counterpunch. 11 Jan 2017: The Intercept. 21 Dec 2016: Jacobin. What triggered this recent set of “Deep State is trying to take down Trump” articles? ... Read more

12 February 2017

How we got here

Transcribed and cleaned up from comments from a deliberately anonymous friend of Nick Pettigrew on Twitter. Minorities for the last 20 years: “Hey guys, listen, the Nazis are back and they’re grouping together on the internet.” Mainstream white culture: “Haha, Nazis, Godwin, Godwin! You broke Godwin’s Law!” Minorities: “I’m not happy with this person advocating my extinction being ‘given a platform’.” Mainstream white culture: “You’re the real Nazis, and freedom of speech is in peril! ... Read more

3 February 2017

Bandcamp #NoBanNoWall day

It’s Bandcamp’s Human Rights Day. They’re donating all their profits from today’s sales to the ACLU. In addition, over 200 artists and labels are donating their profits to the ACLU as well. So, it’s a great time to go buy some new music. Bandcamp offer lossless FLAC files as well as MP3s, streaming as well as downloads, and they pay the artists more than Apple or Amazon do, taking only a 10-15% cut. ... Read more

29 January 2017

Trump becomes a political candidate again

In other news, it has been uncovered that Trump filed with the FEC to be a candidate for re-election just hours after being sworn in as President. This is highly unusual, and has two important effects. Firstly, because he’s now a political candidate as well as the President, it becomes more difficult for any 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization to criticize Trump without falling foul of regulations totally prohibiting charities from electoral campaigning. ... Read more

29 January 2017

FOIA delays instituted

The FBI qualifies Freedom of Information Act requests for different processing times based on their size: A request is routed through a small processing track if it encompasses 50 pages or less, a medium processing track if it encompasses 51 to 950 pages, or a large processing track if it encompasses 951 pages or more. They have apparently quietly changed the rules to say that any request involving more than 50 pages of documents is now a large or complex request. ... Read more

29 January 2017

We have to stop Bannon

At the start of 2016, I was a legal permanent resident alien, married to a US citizen. When Hillary Clinton was chosen as the Democrats’ candidate, I had a hunch Trump might win. I hurried to become a full US citizen, and did so over the summer. Given Trump’s friendliness to groups like NumbersUSA, I had a hunch that legal immigrants would no longer be safe. I suspected that Republicans would turn a blind eye to abuse of legal immigrants, or even approve of it. ... Read more

23 January 2017

What the Women's March actually achieved

The big news this weekend is obviously the Women’s March. Or perhaps I should say, the Women’s Marches, because there were marches in cities across the world. This was not an urban event or a “blue state” thing. There were well-attended women’s marches in the “red states” of Arizona, South Carolina, and Utah. There were marches in Australia, South Africa, even Antarctica. There was a Women’s March in Lubbock, Texas, even though there was a dust storm. ... Read more

19 January 2017

Trump inaugural poem

The Independent published a story about a poem supposedly written in honor of the inauguration of Donald Trump: Come out for the Domhnall, ye brave men and proud, The scion of Torquil and best of MacLeod! With purpose and strength he came down from his tower To snatch from a tyrant his ill-gotten power. Now the cry has gone up with a cheer from the crowd: “Come out for the Domhnall, the best of MacLeod! ... Read more

© mathew 2017