Feed aggregator

The View's Ana Navarro Says 'We Cannot Justify Voting For A Racist'

Crooks and Liars - 5 hours 14 min ago

This entire week, I've seen Republicans try to wrestle with Trump's overt racism, without confronting the past four decades of racism that underpinned the success of the entire Republican project. Why are so few Republicans willing to acknowledge it, and apologize for not confronting it in the past?

I've seen a lot of Republicans on social media this week who insist they "didn't know." You didn't know? The same people who have such a finely tuned sense of moral discernment that they can't "in good conscience" bake a wedding cake for a gay couple, or permit their tax dollars to include birth control pills in public insurance, people who argue endlessly about how many angels can dance on the end of a Republican pin -- those people didn't notice the glaring moral wrong of racism?

They didn't say anything because they got what they wanted. They got the power, they got the cash, they got the Supreme Court seats, they got the sense of smug superiority. It was so much easier to be a Republican when the person in the Oval Office wasn't making the racism so very, very hard to ignore. And now the taint has washed over all of them. You can't miss it.

And we will never let them forget it.

On The View, Ana Navarro cut loose on prominent Republicans for their silence in face of Trump's racism while Meghan McCain and Joy Behar joined in.

read more

Categories: Politics

Python 3.8 Will Finally Include the Walrus Operator

Slashdot - 5 hours 16 min ago
An anonymous reader quotes LWN: Python 3.8 is feature complete at this point, which makes it a good time to see what will be part of it when the final release is made. That is currently scheduled for October, so users don't have that long to wait to start using those new features. The headline feature for Python 3.8 is also its most contentious. The process for deciding on Python Enhancement Proposal (PEP) 572 ("Assignment Expressions") was a rather bumpy ride that eventually resulted in a new governance model for the language. That model meant that a new steering council would replace longtime benevolent dictator for life (BDFL) Guido van Rossum for decision-making, after Van Rossum stepped down in part due to the "PEP 572 mess". Out of that came a new operator, however, that is often called the "walrus operator" due to its visual appearance. Using ":=" in an if or while statement allows assigning a value to a variable while testing it... It is a feature that many other languages have, but Python has, of course, gone without it for nearly 30 years at this point. In the end, it is actually a fairly small change for all of the uproar it caused.

Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Gas station clerk fired after threatening Latinx customers with ICE: 'Go back to their country'

Daily Kos - 5 hours 34 min ago

What happens when you tell people they “need to go back to their country” and threaten them by saying, “ICE will come”? Sometimes, you get fired. This is the case for a gas station clerk who, at the time, worked at a Naperville “Bucky’s” gas station outside of Chicago, Illinois. As a now-viral video relays, the clerk tells Latinx customers (including a U.S. citizen, though it’s abhorrent either way) to go back to their own country.

On Tuesday, the video went viral. On Wednesday, people protested. As of Thursday, the company has fired him.

“Thank god. I am so happy," Nicte Buitron, who was at the gas station with family when the incident occurred, told the Chicago Tribune. “What he said to my family was wrong.”

“(The clerk) lost his temper,” Steve Kalhorn, general counsel of Buchanan Energy, which owns the location, said to the Chicago Tribune. “He should have handled things differently.” If by “differently,” he means not spewing racist hate, that would seem to be the case.

Kalhorn noted that he pulled surveillance audio and video from the store after receiving tons of calls about the video circulating social media. From there, the clerk was suspended during an internal investigation. Within days, he was fired. 

Categories: Politics

Sean Duffy Has Meltdown Trying To Defend Trump's Racism

Crooks and Liars - 5 hours 50 min ago
Sean Duffy Has Meltdown Trying To Defend Trump's Racism

On Tuesday, leading up to the final vote on the resolution saying what we've known all along, that Trump is a racist bastard, former reality TV star Sean Duffy, from Wisconsin, took the floor to defend Trump and deny that he is really a racist. In a matter of a minute or two, Duffy escalated quickly into a full meltdown and ending up calling "The Squad" as being anti-American:

Duffy defended Trump on the floor, saying the president’s remarks could not be racist because they did not cite anyone’s race.

Duffy then went on to accuse the four Democrats criticized by Trump of being anti-American.

“I see nothing (in Trump’s tweets) that references anybody’s race. Not a thing! I don’t see anyone’s name referenced in the tweets,” Duffy said.

“But the president is referring to people, congresswomen, who are anti-American! And lo and behold, everybody in this chamber knows who he’s talking about,” Duffy said.

Duffy got so far out of hand that Representative Pramillya Jayapal (D-Washington) had to ask that Duffy's comments be stricken from the record because they were "defamatory."

However, on Wednesday, Duffy became a profile in courage by saying that his comments were "misinterpreted" and threw Trump under the bus:

read more

Categories: Politics

TikTok ramps up Instagram competition as it tests copycat ‘Discover’ page, more

9to5Mac - 5 hours 55 min ago

Viral video sharing and creation app TikTok is setting its sights on Instagram with a new round of interface changes and more. As detailed by TechCrunch, TikTok is testing a “Discover” tab, a redesigned “For You” section, and more.


The post TikTok ramps up Instagram competition as it tests copycat ‘Discover’ page, more appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

Facebook Backpedals From Its Original Ambitious Vision for Libra

Slashdot - 6 hours 16 min ago
An anonymous reader quotes Ars Technica: David Marcus, the head of Facebook's new Calibra payments division, appeared before two hostile congressional committees this week with a simple message: Facebook knows policymakers are concerned about Libra, and Facebook won't move forward with the project until their concerns are addressed. While he didn't say so explicitly, Marcus' comments at hearings on Tuesday and Wednesday represented a dramatic shift in Facebook's conception of Libra. In Facebook's original vision, Libra would be an open and largely decentralized network, akin to Bitcoin. The core network would be beyond the reach of regulators. Regulatory compliance would be the responsibility of exchanges, wallets, and other services that are the "on ramps and off ramps" to the Libra ecosystem. Facebook now seems to recognize its original vision was a non-starter with regulators. So this week Marcus sketched out a new vision for Libra -- one in which the Libra Association will shoulder significant responsibility for ensuring compliance with laws relating to money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes... [T]here's a pretty fundamental tradeoff between network openness and effective enforcement of regulations governing payment networks. If the Libra Association doesn't have a way to enforce compliance by wallet providers, criminals are likely to flock to wallet services that don't strictly enforce the rules -- or to download open source wallet software and use non-custodial accounts. But if the Libra Association does have a mechanism for forcing compliance, that inherently raises the bar for entering the market and makes the Libra network look more like conventional financial networks -- with all the red tape that entails. This could be particularly harmful for marginalized people in developing countries, since developers in those markets will have the fewest resources to jump through regulatory hoops.

Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Annual ‘Voice Tech Report’ predicts Apple will launch a ‘SiriOS’ in 2020

9to5Mac - 6 hours 49 min ago

Mangrove Capital Partners is out this week with its Voice Tech Report for 2019. This annual report covers the growing adoption of voice assistants, and makes an interesting prediction for Siri in 2020.


The post Annual ‘Voice Tech Report’ predicts Apple will launch a ‘SiriOS’ in 2020 appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

If you can judge by in-state fundraising, Susan Collins is in big trouble

Daily Kos - 6 hours 50 min ago

The bad news for Sen. Susan Collins, Republican from Maine, just doesn't stop. First she learns that she's the second least popular senator, after Mitch McConnell, and now she's getting a glimpse into how unpopular she is in Maine.

The Democratic primary to determine her challenger is months away, but the fundraising for the establishment-backed candidate is very strong, particularly at home in Maine. In just the first two weeks of her campaign, Sara Gideon out-raised Collins' total for the whole of the year from in-state donors, HuffPost reports.

Gideon, the state House speaker, formally announced on June 24, and raised almost $1.1 million in the final ten days of the quarter, the end of June. About $453,000 of that—43% of it—was in $200 or less donations. The FEC doesn't require that donors at that level be identified, so it's not clear how many of those are Mainers. But 44% of the remaining $600,500 came from in-state. Collins, on the other hand, raised $2 million in the last quarter, but just 1.3% of it, about $26,000, was from small-dollar donors. That's bad. This is worse: 95% of her total haul came from out-of-state. Less than $100,000 was given from people in Maine.

So in a week and a half, Gideon received more than double the amount of in-state donations than Collins was able to raise in-state in six months. Ouch. Oh, and this: "Roughly $490,000 of Collins' second-quarter contributions came from political action committees, compared to the $5,000 reported by Gideon's campaign."  

Of course Collins is taking PAC and out-of-state big money and of course she's going to get it. Republicans are going to protect one of their own, and she's definitely that. But there's also all those millions in funds being held for the eventual Democratic nominee that Collins is having to worry about. Just as she should.

Let's keep her worried by building that fund. Please give $1 to help Democrats in each of these crucial Senate races, but especially the one in Maine!

Categories: Politics

Health Insurers Make It Easy For Scammers To Steal Millions

Crooks and Liars - 7 hours 20 min ago
Health Insurers Make It Easy For Scammers To Steal MillionsHealth Insurers Make It Easy for Scammers to Steal Millions. Who Pays? You.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.

Ever since her 14-year marriage imploded in financial chaos and a protective order, Amy Lankford had kept a wary eye on her ex, David Williams.

Williams, then 51, with the beefy body of a former wrestler gone slightly to seed, was always working the angles, looking for shortcuts to success and mostly stumbling. During their marriage, Lankford had been forced to work overtime as a physical therapist when his personal training business couldn’t pay his share of the bills.

So, when Williams gave their three kids iPad Minis for Christmas in 2013, she was immediately suspicious. Where did he get that kind of money? Then one day on her son’s iPad, she noticed numbers next to the green iMessage icon indicating that new text messages were waiting. She clicked.

What she saw next made her heart pound. Somehow the iPad had become linked to her ex-husband’s personal Apple device and the messages were for him.

read more

Categories: Politics

Finimize, Episode, Spend Stack, and other apps to check out this weekend

iDownloadBlog - 7 hours 49 min ago

Apps of the week

This edition of our Apps of the Week roundup includes an app for learning more about finance, chat rooms for fans of TV shows and movies, and a price-tracking list-maker. And as always, we've selected two great new games for you to check out.
Categories: Geek

Employers Are Mining the Data Their Workers Generate To Figure Out What They're Up To, and With Whom

Slashdot - 7 hours 50 min ago
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Wall Street Journal: To be an employee of a large company in the U.S. now often means becoming a workforce data generator -- from the first email sent from bed in the morning to the Wi-Fi hotspot used during lunch to the new business contact added before going home. Employers are parsing those interactions to learn who is influential, which teams are most productive and who is a flight risk. Companies, which have wide legal latitude in the U.S. to monitor workers, don't always tell them what they are tracking. [...] It's not just emails that are being tallied and analyzed. Companies are increasingly sifting through texts, Slack chats and, in some cases, recorded and transcribed phone calls on mobile devices. Microsoft Corp. tallies data on the frequency of chats, emails and meetings between its staff and clients using its own Office 365 services to measure employee productivity, management efficacy and work-life balance. Tracking the email, chats and calendar appointments can paint a picture of how employees spend an average of 20 hours of their work time each week, says Natalie McCollough, a general manager at Microsoft who focuses on workplace analytics. The company only allows managers to look at groups of five or more workers. Advocates of using surveillance technology in the workplace say the insights allow companies to better allocate resources, spot problem employees earlier and suss out high performers. Critics warn that the proliferating tools may not be nuanced enough to result in fair, equitable judgments. The report says that "U.S. employers are legally entitled to access any communications or intellectual property created in the workplace or on devices they pay for that employees use for work." Companies are getting smarter by analyzing phone calls and conference room conversations. "In some cases, tonal analysis can help diagnose culture issues on a team, showing who dominates conversations, who demurs and who resists efforts to engage in emotional discussions," the report says.

Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Huge area of the United States broils on what could be the hottest weekend in U.S. history

Daily Kos - 8 hours 1 min ago

The heat wave that has baked more than half the country over much of this week hits its peak in many areas this weekend with blazing heat, stifling humidity, and a combined heat index that’s not just a recipe for misery, but a serious health threat. Though only a handful of locations are expected to break their all time temperature records, the extent of this heatwave could still make for the hottest weekend ever recorded.

Heat emergencies have been declared in over a dozen cities and scheduled events in many areas, including the New York Triathlon, have been cancelled because of the heat this weekend. However, many Americans are still working in positions that require them to be out in the sun. That includes utility workers trying to deal with an electrical grid straining under near record demand. If you have to be in the heat this weekend, watch yourself — and others around you — for signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

The National Weather Service has noted that this heat wave has been particularly prolonged and is especially dangerous because temperatures have also been well above normal overnight. High nighttime temperatures are regarded as a indicator of high risk to public health. So … watch it.

Warmer nighttime temperatures are one of the features predicted by many climate change models, and as the climate crisis becomes evermore present day to day, those predictions are proving themselves correct. Hot temperatures overnight this week are greatly increasing both electrical use and the health threat. Some areas can expect relief from the heat as soon as Sunday evening. For others, the heat will continue into next week with a break in the heat wave not expected before Tuesday or Wednesday.

This shot of heat across the United States follows just a month after Europe reached all-time-record heat. Earlier this year, Australia was blasted by a heat wave that saw all time records fall, along with temperatures so great that wildlife died in huge numbers.

And remember … two-thirds of summer is still ahead.

Categories: Politics

Twitter says it’s adding more context to ‘this tweet is unavailable’ messages

9to5Mac - 8 hours 24 min ago

Twitter has announced that it will soon roll out a change that adds more context to missing tweets in conversations. Currently, you might see a notice saying “this tweet is unavailable,” but without any further explanation as to why.


The post Twitter says it’s adding more context to ‘this tweet is unavailable’ messages appeared first on 9to5Mac.

Categories: Geek

Mike's Blog Round Up

Crooks and Liars - 8 hours 49 min ago
Mike's Blog Round Up

We did it! We made it to Saturday! After such a hate-filled week, I thought we should look back to when we Americans dreamed big dreams and made them come true. Fifty years ago today, we landed on the moon. Today, let's celebrate Science and Math and dream again!

HackWhackers tells us about how to experience Apollo 11 in real time. How cool is that!

Stupid Evil Bastard has documentary footage of the lunar landing, including commercials of the era, from CBS' original live feed coverage!

Notes to Ponder looks into the conspiracy theory of the moon landing.

Bonus Track: Did you guys know that there is a tiny art museum on the moon? Open Culture did, and it features work by John Chamberlain, Forrest Myers, David Novros, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg and Andy Warhol!

Round-up by Tengrain who blogs at Mock, Paper, Scissors. You can follow Tengrain on the Twitters, too. Send tips, requests, and suggestions to mbru@crooksandliars.com (with For MBRU in the subject line).

Categories: Politics

The Debt Ceiling And Why We Should Kill It

Crooks and Liars - 8 hours 50 min ago
The Debt Ceiling And Why We Should Kill It

Steven Pressman, Colorado State University

Editor’s note: The U.S. government maxed out its national credit card in March and has been moving money around ever since to avoid running out of cash. Very soon the Treasury Department will reach the limits of this financial sleight of hand, and Congress will have to either raise the debt ceiling – currently US$22 trillion – or suffer the consequences. Economist Steve Pressman explains why we have a ceiling and why it’s time to abolish it.

1. What is the debt ceiling?

Like the rest of us, governments must borrow when they spend more money than they receive. They do so by issuing bonds or IOUs that promise to repay the money and make regular interest payments. Government debt is the total sum of all this borrowed money.

The debt ceiling, which Congress established a century ago, is the maximum amount the government can borrow. It’s a limit on the national debt.

2. What’s the national debt?

read more

Categories: Politics

Abbreviated Pundit Round-up: When racism is the point, we get Charlottesville 2.0

Daily Kos - 9 hours 20 min ago

Ron Brownstein/Atlantic:

Trump’s Base Isn’t Enough

The president needs the voters who approve of his record on the economy but disapprove of him overall. His racist attacks this week only hurt that cause.

That choice may reflect the convergence of inclination and calculation. Trump’s instinct is to center his politics on cultural and racial conflicts that pit Americans uneasy about the nation’s changing identity against those who welcome or accept it. But Trump also faces clear evidence that he may be unable to build a winning coalition with just the voters satisfied with his performance in office. That’s evident even with an economy that’s booming, at least according to measures like the low unemployment rate and the soaring stock market.

That choice may reflect the convergence of inclination and calculation. Trump’s instinct is to center his politics on cultural and racial conflicts that pit Americans uneasy about the nation’s changing identity against those who welcome or accept it. But Trump also faces clear evidence that he may be unable to build a winning coalition with just the voters satisfied with his performance in office. That’s evident even with an economy that’s booming, at least according to measures like the low unemployment rate and the soaring stock market.

The latest such evidence comes in a new study released today by Navigator Research, a consortium of Democratic research and advocacy groups. The report, provided exclusively to The Atlantic, examines a group that many analysts in both parties believe could prove to be the key bloc of 2020 swing voters: Americans who say they approve of Trump’s management of the economy, but still disapprove of his overall performance as president. And it shows Trump facing significant headwinds among that potentially critical group, partly because of the divisive language and behavior he’s taken to new heights, or lows, since last weekend—tweeting about the congresswomen and encouraging his supporters to attack them as well.

That tile ought to be a bumper sticker. Trump needs more than his base. That is a political fact. And there is a sliver that’s persuadable. [But you know that because I’ve told you.]

Categories: Politics

Customize various locking and unlocking sounds on your iPhone with SoundLock

iDownloadBlog - 9 hours 20 min ago

With SoundLock, you can customize a variety of different sounds associated with locking and unlocking your jailbroken iPhone or iPad.
Categories: Geek

Largest Hybrid Electric Plane Set To Take Flight

Slashdot - 10 hours 50 min ago
Ampair, a Los Angeles clean tech company in my neck of the woods, is set to begin accepting orders for a hybrid electric aircraft at the EAA AirVenture airshow in Wisconsin next week. Dubbed the EEL, the aircraft is in fact a retrofit of a Cessna 337, an aircraft that has a forward-mounted prop engine that pulls and a rear-mounted prop engine that pushes. Ampair's retrofit will replace one of those internal combustion engines with an electric motor powered by batteries. ZDNet reports: Ampair believes hybrid power may be a stopgap, providing fuel savings while still retaining many of the benefits of an internal combustion drivetrain. "The Ampaire Electric EEL is the first step in bringing lower emissions, lower-operating costs, and quieter operations to general aviation through electrification," according to the company's CEO Kevin Noertker. "The original Cessna 337 provided great utility, and this hybrid electric conversion retains those advantages while reducing fuel cost and maintenance by about 50 percent." The EEL is now undergoing a 30 month test program, which began in June. One of the tests will be demonstrating reliable single-engine climbs on each powerplant. Ampair expects the aircraft to be certified by 2021. Ampair's EEL aircraft will seat four or six passengers. The company says the aircraft cost will be competitive with comparable piston twins.

Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Quantum Leap From Australian Research Promises Super-Fast Computing Power

Slashdot - 14 hours 50 min ago
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Simmons, a former Australian of the Year, and her team at the University of New South Wales announced in a paper published in Nature journal on Thursday that they have been able to achieve the first two-qubit gate between atom qubits in silicon, allowing them to communicate with each other at a 200 times faster rate than previously achieved at 0.8 nanoseconds. A two-qubit gate operates like a logic gate in traditional computing, and the team at UNSW was able to achieve the faster operation by putting the two atom qubits closer together than ever before -- just 13 nanometers -- and in real-time controllably observing and measuring their spin states. A scanning tunneling microscope was used to place the atoms in silicon after the optimal distance between the two qubits had been worked out. The research has been two decades in the making, after researchers in Australia opted to build a quantum computer on silicon material.

Share on Google+

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek


Baker-Watts - 15 hours 44 min ago
Categories: Geek