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Thu, 23 May 2019
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'Climate crises' madness: Girl reportedly bullied by teacher and Classmates for refusing to participate in 'Climate Strike'

Greta Thunberg
© AP
A Swedish girl who refused to join her classmates in skipping school for the sake of the climate has ended up being labelled as a "climate denier", which her mother described as "mass psychosis".

A high-school pupil who refused to attend a so-called "school strike for climate" has been bullied not only by her classmates, but the teacher as well, the magazine Det Goda Samhället reported.

When the girl's classmates decided to join the "climate strike" spearheaded by teenage activist-turned-superstar Greta Thunberg, "Sanna" declared she didn't want to attend and was given a tongue-lashing from the teacher.

"The teacher said 'Sanna' was uncommitted and failed to understand the seriousness of the climate threat. She asked her to reconsider her decision, and she said it openly, for the entire class to hear. 'Sanna' felt like the teacher was trying to ridicule her in front of the others", "Lena", the girl's mother, told Det Goda Samhället.


Because of the teacher's actions, the rest of the class also turned against "Sanna", who ended up being boycotted by her own friends and accused of being a "climate denier", "Lena" recalled.

Briefcase

Geoffrey Rush wins record $2.9 million defamation payout in sexual harassment case

Geoffrey Rush and his accuser Eryn Jean Norvill

Geoffrey Rush and his accuser Eryn Jean Norvill
Geoffrey Rush holds the record for the largest defamation payout to a single person in Australia after The Daily Telegraph agreed to pay the actor almost $2 million for lost earnings, on top of an $850,000 payout, for a series of reports accusing him of "inappropriate behaviour" towards a female actor.

On Thursday, the Federal Court heard that lawyers for Mr Rush and Nationwide News, the publisher of the Telegraph, had agreed the Oscar winner should receive $1.98 million in damages for past and future economic loss resulting from the reports.

The court heard Mr Rush had previously offered to settle the case for $50,000, plus costs, and an apology.

The $1.98 million figure is in addition to $850,000 in compensatory and aggravated damages, plus $42,302 in interest, that Federal Court Justice Michael Wigney previously awarded Mr Rush to vindicate his reputation and compensate him for the "personal distress and hurt" caused by the reports.

Damages for economic loss are in a separate category and require proof of particular loss.

Network

AI assistants like Siri and Alexa spread sexism, UN study reveals

AI assistant
© Shutterstock
Voice-activated personal assistants like Amazon's Alexa and Apple's Siri are reinforcing and spreading sexism, according to a recent United Nations study.

The feminine-voiced AI helpers, which also include Google Assistant and Microsoft's Cortana, perpetuate the harmful gender stereotype that women are subservient and tolerate being treated poorly, the report from UNESCO found.

"Because the speech of most voice assistants is female, it sends a signal that women are... docile helpers, available at the touch of a button or with a blunt voice command like 'hey' or 'OK,'" the report says.

Comment: Give. Us. A. Break. These AI assistants are not women, they are sexless. No one thinks that they're women so it's not possible for them to perpetuate gender stereotypes. The UN 'study' could just have easily come up with reasons why using a female voice is a positive thing - they're helpful, pleasant, capable, trustworthy... If these companies had chosen to use a male voice for their products, there would likely be a list of complaints about the exclusion of women from AI. It just goes to show, if you look hard enough, you can find something to be outraged by anywhere.


Binoculars

Let's not make a drama about Skripal case before important questions are answered

skripal house
© REUTERS/Peter Nicholls
A police officer stands guard as a scaffolder works at the site of former spy Sergei Skripal's house, in Salisbury, Britain January 9, 2019.
It's over 14 months since the Skripal poisonings first made world headlines but to paraphrase the words of the 1970s Johnny Nash hit 'There are more questions than answers, and the more we find out, the less we know.'

There's been neither sight nor sound of Yulia or Sergei Skripal. Yulia was last seen in a short video statement released on May 23, 2018, her father in CCTV footage in a shop in Salisbury at 12.47pm on February 27, 2018. If Sergei was sure that the Russian state was responsible for what happened to him, why hasn't he been put before a camera to say so? Even more mysteriously, why hasn't this dutiful son not called his 91-year old mother Yelena to say he's ok? Might Sergei Skripal actually be dead - and if so, why haven't we been told?

Then there's the unraveling of the Amesbury (a town nine miles from Salisbury) postscript. The news that two British nationals, Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess, had been admitted to hospital after being exposed to alleged Novichok poisoning from a bottle of perfume found in a bin by Rowley, caused a sensation when it broke in early July 2018.

Comment: To expect anything more than a blatant propaganda piece from the BBC is simply foolish. It will, no doubt, paint a picture that shows the evil dastardly Russians did it, addressing none of the questions posed above. Same story, different format.

See also:


Document

UKIP's European election candidate Carl Benjamin designated as 'hate agent' in secret Facebook list - report

Carl Benjamin Sargon of Akkad
© YouTube / UKIP Official Channel
Carl Benjamin, British candidate to the European Parliament, best known under his YouTube handle 'Sargon of Akkad'.
Carl Benjamin, a British candidate in the European Parliament elections, has reportedly been labelled a 'hate actor' by Facebook including for 'neutral representation' of a Proud Boys member.

Benjamin's inclusion on the 'blacklist' was reported by Breitbart on Wednesday, mere hours before the kickoff of the UK portion of the European elections. Benjamin, mostly known as a prolific political commentator on his YouTube channel 'Sargon of Akkad,' stepped into offline politics last year when he joined the UK Independence Party (UKIP) and is now vying for a seat in the European legislature.

According to the excerpts from the internal Facebook document, as cited by Breitbart, the social networking site's censors are keeping a detailed log of Benjamin's behavior both on and off the platform, such as voicing support for a member of the right-wing Proud Boys group or hurling a homophobic slur.

Comment: Wasn't there another group who historically kept secret files documenting the activities of certain people they deemed wrong-thinkers? Not to worry; we're sure there's nothing to be learned from history in this case.

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Bullseye

Judge orders Antifa activist Yvette Felarca to pay Judicial Watch legal fees for her 'entirely frivolous' lawsuit

Yvette Felarca
Judicial Watch announced that a U.S. District Judge in California awarded Judicial Watch $22,000 in legal fees in a case filed by an Antifa organizer in an effort to block Judicial Watch from obtaining information about her activities.

Yvette Felarca, a middle school teacher in the Berkeley Unified School District (BUSD), and two co-plaintiffs were ordered to pay Judicial Watch $22,000 in attorney's fees and $4,000 in litigation costs. Felarca had sued the BUSD in federal court to keep the school district from fulfilling its legal obligation to provide Judicial Watch with records of their communications mentioning: Felarca, Antifa, and/or BAMN. Judicial Watch also asked for Felarca's personnel file.

Felarca is a prominent figure in By Any Means Necessary (BAMN), a group founded by the Marxist Revolutionary Workers League that protests conservative speaking engagements. In 2016, Felarca and two of her allies were arrested and charged with several crimes, including felony assault, for inciting a riot in Sacramento. Earlier this year, Felarca was ordered to stand trial for assault.

Comment: See also:


Info

Real pastor holds church in virtual reality, baptises anime girl

VR virtual reality baptism
Games reach an incredibly diverse set of people across national, linguistic, and social barriers, and that goes for religion, too. Last week, we noted that Ninja was taking meals off-screen out of respect for Ramadan, and it should be little surprise to see religious groups taking up residence inside virtual spaces. One Christian pastor now holds church in VRChat, and that even includes baptisms - no matter how ridiculous a person's avatar.

Pastor D.J. Soto is the subject of a new video from YouTuber Syrmor (via Polygon), and the whole process is equal parts earnest and absurd. Soto describes his VR ministry as allowing disadvantaged people - from folks in wheelchairs to recovering drug addicts - to attend church without the judgement that sometimes comes from traditional congregations.

Fellow YouTuber Drumsy, appearing in VRChat as a busty, pink-haired anime girl in a pastel suit, undergoes a digital baptism by crouching underwater for a few seconds as Soto describes the symbolism of the ceremony. You can see Drumsy's own perspective of the baptism on YouTube, or see Syrmor's full video below.

Comment: Welcome to clown world.

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Question

Adding nuance to the abortion debate

my body my choice protest sign
Last Tuesday, the Governor of Alabama signed the most restrictive anti-abortion bill in America into law. The new law bans abortions even in the case of rape and makes performing an abortion a Class A felony, punishable by up to 99 years in prison. Despite the low probability of this law going into effect, it has provoked a slew of commentary from both sides of the aisle. To call it "commentary," however, suggests that people are engaging in thoughtful attempts to persuade one another. In reality, the abortion debate has had all the intellectual rigor and emotional maturity of a pissing contest.

In an effort to be part of the solution, I'd like to explain why I'm pro-choice. Without doubt, my position will put me at odds with pro-lifers. But it will also put me at odds with many pro-choicers. Indeed, part of the reason I feel motivated to defend my position is because of how unpersuasive I find the central argument of the pro-choice movement. It's painful to watch a movement use bad reasons to defend a position when good ones are available.

Comment: Good on the author for bringing some much-needed nuance to the debate. Despite some of his arguments relying on hypotheticals that would benefit from some statistical back-up (most women who get abortions already have kids? Do we know this for sure?), the author, at the very least, seems to have a handle on arguments from both sides and avoids painting one side or the other as unreasonable monsters.

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NPC

Bill Nye is mentally ill, suffering from chronic "climate anxiety" - and wants you to feel the same way

Bill Nye

Bill Nye is now the 'Climate Crisis!' guy
Even though much of the country has been recently freezing due to abnormally cold temperatures for this time of year, Bill Nye, the washed-up pseudoscience guy, thinks that global warming has already caused our planet to spontaneously burst into flames- meaning he's pretty much gone completely insane.

While spewing a lengthy diatribe during a recent appearance on HBO's Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, Bill Nye about started to foam at the mouth while confessing some of his craziest conspiracy theories about climate change, which include his insane belief that "the planet's on f****** fire!"

Citing as "scientific evidence" Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez's (AOC) famously imbecilic Green New Deal, which states that cow flatulence is going to cause the end of the world in the next 12 years, Bill Nye ranted on and on and on about how Earth is supposedly heating up like an oven due to carbon dioxide (CO2), the "greenhouse gas" that maintains all plant life.


"By the end of this century, if emissions keep rising, the average temperature on Earth could go up another four to eight degrees," Bill Nye screamed, chastising everyone who disagrees with his completely made-up "facts."

Comment: See: Tucker Carlson induces cognitive dissonance in Bill Nye the Science Guy over climate change


Bizarro Earth

UK: Grooming gang victim raped by more than 100 men but police arrested her first

model silhouette
© Alamy Stock Photo
Cassie is now in police protection (picture posed by model)
As a vulnerable, lost teenager, Cassie Pike was raped by more than 100 men.

Yet it was Cassie - not her string of vile attackers - who police repeatedly arrested.

The nightmare that began when she was a troubled 11-year-old eventually drove her to attempt suicide.

But for five hellish years, the authorities turned a blind eye.

Comment: See also: