Author Archive | majestic

President Obama Interview Reveals He’ll Risk All For TPP

Speaking of Democrats’ opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement, “I understand the emotions behind it,” President Obama tells Matt Bai, “but when you break down the logic of their arguments, I’ve got to say that there’s not much there there.” The interview for Yahoo News was remarkable for just how willing Mr. Obama appears to be to make enemies of people he’s supposed to be friends with just to pass the TPP:

“She’s absolutely wrong,” Barack Obama said, before I could even get the question out of my mouth.

He was talking about Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts senator and populist crusader whom Obama helped elevate to national prominence. Warren generally reserves her more acid critiques for Republicans and Wall Street, but in recent weeks she’s been leading a vocal coalition of leftist groups and lawmakers who oppose the president’s free-trade pact with 12 Asian countries.

This past week, as I had just reminded Obama, Warren launched her heaviest torpedo yet against the trade deal, alleging that some future president might use it as an excuse to undo the reregulation of Wall Street that Obama signed into law in 2010.

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Pope Francis: ‘Many Powerful People Don’t Want Peace Because They Live Off War’

How long before Pope Francis meets an untimely death? If he keeps on making statements like this: “Many powerful people don’t want peace because they live off war,” one imagines that the answer would be “Not long!”

Pope Francis Palo 11.jpg

ANSA reports that he spoke such a naked truth in response to a question from one of 7,000 children taking part in an audience held with the Peace Factory organization:

“This is serious,” Francis told the children.  “Some powerful people make their living with the production of arms. It’s the industry of death.”

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The Dad Bod Meme

dad bodAn essay by Mackenzie Pearson for Clemson University newspaper The Odyssey about girls’ love of  “the Dad Bod” has gone viral in a major way. Is the Dad Bod a real trend? Here’s how she describes it:

In case you haven’t noticed lately, girls are all about that dad bod. I hadn’t heard about this body type until my roommate mentioned it. She used to be crazy over guys she claimed had the dad bod. After observing the guys she found attractive, I came to understand this body type well and was able to identify it. The dad bod is a nice balance between a beer gut and working out. The dad bod says, “I go to the gym occasionally, but I also drink heavily on the weekends and enjoy eating eight slices of pizza at a time.” It’s not an overweight guy, but it isn’t one with washboard abs, either.

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Seymour Hersh Eviscerates Obama’s Story of the Killing of Osama bin Laden

One of the best and most informed journalists covering America’s various wars has long been Seymour Hersh. His new essay for the London Review of Books absolutely eviscerates the official Obama administration version of the killing of Osama bin Laden, writing that “it might have been written by Lewis Carroll”:

It’s been four years since a group of US Navy Seals assassinated Osama bin Laden in a night raid on a high-walled compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The killing was the high point of Obama’s first term, and a major factor in his re-election. The White House still maintains that the mission was an all-American affair, and that the senior generals of Pakistan’s army and Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) were not told of the raid in advance. This is false, as are many other elements of the Obama administration’s account. The White House’s story might have been written by Lewis Carroll: would bin Laden, target of a massive international manhunt, really decide that a resort town forty miles from Islamabad would be the safest place to live and command al-Qaida’s operations?

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Jon Stewart Makes Fun Of Jade Helm Paranoia

Texans’ (dubbed Lone Star Lunatics by Jon Stewart) fear of a federal military takeover via the Jade Helm 15 exercises make for some prime material for The Best F#@king News Team Ever as they grill Stewart on when it’s okay to shoot people, and Texans’ irrational fear of the imposition of martial law.

“So Texas, it appears you are on the verge of being taken over by ISIS or the United States of America . . . What would Rick Perry do?” asks Stewart…

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‘Our Demand Is Simple: Stop Killing Us’

Jay Caspian Kang tells the story of how ” the first 21st-century civil rights movement” was built by DeRay Mckesson, a 29-year-old former school administrator who has spent much of the past nine months attending and catalyzing civil rights protests such as those in Baltimore, for the New York Times Magazine:

… Since Aug. 9, 2014, when Officer Darren Wilson of the Ferguson Police Department shot and killed Michael Brown, Mckesson and a core group of other activists have built the most formidable American protest movement of the 21st century to date. Their innovation has been to marry the strengths of social media — the swift, morally blunt consensus that can be created by hashtags; the personal connection that a charismatic online persona can make with followers; the broad networks that allow for the easy distribution of documentary photos and videos — with an effort to quickly mobilize protests in each new city where a police shooting occurs.

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The Backlash Against ‘Natural’ Foods

The pendulum of popular sentiment seems to be swinging back towards the “better living through chemistry” era just as the likes of Kraft and Pepsi are caving to demands for less chemicals in food. Gawker‘s post “The Bullshit Hypocrisy of ‘All-Natural’ Foods” is the latest example of skepticism about “natural” foods:

thenakedlabel.com

thenakedlabel.com

Here’s the thing about nature: It will fuck up your shit.

A few weeks ago, the website The Naked Label published a picture of a vibrant, colorful mushroom. It was captioned with a quotation from author and paleo diet advocate Diane Sanfilippo: “We cannot make food better than nature.”

The problem? The mushroom pictured was the Amanita muscariawhich is highly poisonous.

The Naked Label probably wasn’t recommending poisonous mushrooms as a part of your balanced cannabis-induced munchies on purpose. However, this tiny meme is symptomatic of a bigger problem on the internet: self-declared “natural health” gurus who say everything natural is automatically better.

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America’s Propaganda War With Islamic State

ISIS, or Islamic State as it’s variously known, has been hailed for its sophisticated use of social media to recruit fans and followers. The United States Government has been battling them in propaganda stakes reports the Washington Post:

As fighters surged into Syria last summer, a video surfaced online with the grisly imagery and sneering tone of a propaganda release from the Islamic State.


“Run, do not walk, to ISIS Land,” read the opening line of a script that promised new arrivals would learn “useful new skills” such as “crucifying and executing Muslims.” The words were juxtaposed with images of the terrorist group’s atrocities: kneeling prisoners shot point-blank; severed heads positioned next to a propped-up corpse; limp bodies left hanging from crosses in public squares.

The source of the video was revealed only in its closing frame: the U.S. Department of State.

“Welcome to ISIS Land” was in some ways a breakthrough for the U.S.

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American Institute of Architects to Reconsider WTC7 9/11 Collapse

Maybe Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth is finally having some influence: the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has added a resolution regarding the collapse of WTC Building 7 to the agenda of its upcoming annual meeting, per Digital Journal:

At their national convention May 14-16, AIA members will be voting on a resolution to adopt a position statement in support of a new investigation into the collapse of “Building 7” on September 11, 2001.

Wtc7 collapse progression

Plan view of 7 World Trade Center, damage and collapse progression (NIST)

 The 47-story building, that formerly stood in the shadow of the North Tower, fell fairly neatly into its own footprint at about 5:20 PM on that tragic day. Other buildings in the World Trade Center complex were severely damaged by falling debris from the Towers and remained standing. But Building 7, not damaged as significantly as other buildings, suffered a sudden total collapse, which was captured on a number of videos.

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The New Googleplex: A Titanic Human Terrarium

“The next Googleplex goes way beyond free snacks and massages; it’s a future-proof microclimate,” writes Brad Stone for Bloomberg:

The most ambitious project unveiled by Google this year isn’t a smartphone, website, or autonomous, suborbital balloon from the Google X lab. You can’t hold it, or download it, or share it instantly with friends. In fact, the first part of it probably won’t exist for at least three years. But you can read all about it in hundreds of pages of soaring descriptions and conceptual drawings, which the company submitted in February to the local planning office of Mountain View, Calif.

Credit: BIG/Heatherwick Studio

Credit: BIG/Heatherwick Studio

 

The vision outlined in these documents, an application for a major expansion of the Googleplex, its campus, is mind-boggling. The proposed design, developed by the European architectural firms of Bjarke Ingels Group and Heatherwick Studio, does away with doors. It abandons thousands of years of conventional thinking about walls.

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