Tuesday, May 20, 2014

For A Tuesday

 The long week-end is over...

This child needs your prayers.

Today is Draw Mohammad Day.

Go nuts (like, artistically).

(Draw here.)
An excellent summation of this day can be found here:

To recap, Molly Norris drew this rather nice and funny cartoon 'way back in 2010. That's like four years ago, dude. It went viral, because its damn clever, frankly. Then the death threats started rolling in, and Molly Norris has completely disappeared. Vanished, poof. And she's still gone, four years later. 

Artist's conception of the above polemicist.

Five Chinese military officers have been indicted over charges of industrial espionage, further highlighting the need to protect both national and industrial secrets:

The United States and China are now embroiled in a spirited spat over cyber-espionage.

Over the weekend, a U.S. grand jury indicted five Chinese military officers for hacking computer systems of American companies. Specifically, U.S. officials are alleging that these individuals were stealing trade secrets for the benefit of China's state-owned companies.

The United States isn't alone. Other countries, including Canada, have allegedly been victims of Chinese cyber espionage.

In January 2012, CBC News reported that that foreign hackers from China gained access to highly classified information at the Finance Department, Treasury Board, and Defence Research and Development Canada.

There has also been allegations of Chinese hacker attacks on private Canadian companies. Remember Nortel?

In an interview with the CBC's As It Happens in February 2012, Brian Shields, the former senior systems security adviser at Nortel, said spying by hackers was constant from about 2000 until 2009 and was a "considerable factor" in that company's bankruptcy.

"When they see what your business plans are, that's a huge advantage. It's unfair business practices that really bring down a company of this size," Shields said.

There's more.

In 2013, according to the Financial Post, a report by U.S. internet firm Mandiant claimed that one of China’s cyber espionage units hacked the computer systems of at least seven organizations with operations in Canada.

The same article cites reports of Chinese hackers gaining access to law firms involved in the takeover bid for Saskatchewan’s Potash Corp.

Despite those attacks, a cyber security expert suggests that Canada won't follow the U.S. lead and press charges against the perpetrators.

"Canada has many of the same issues, and has been hurt in many of the same ways by Chinese industrial espionage," Queen's University David Skillicorn told Yahoo Canada News in an email exchange.

"But two problems have prevented us from doing much about it: (1) attribution -- who is responsible?

"(2) Effective response — what could you do even if you knew who was responsible? (and the US response is little more than naming and shaming)."

Stop trading with the b@$#@%^s. That's what. Is it worth it to lose not only natural resources but innovation and inventions, as well?

To answer one's question: no because North Korea is one of the world's most secretive totalitarian states that is propped up not only by China but also by the outside world's indifference:

On Sunday, North Korea state media announced that an apartment building had collapsed in the capital city of Pyongyang. The remarkable official response to the disaster suggests that it is being viewed as a national tragedy, and reports in the South Korean news media indicate that the death toll could be in triple digits.

The building didn't actually collapse on Sunday, however. In fact, the disaster occurred May 13. For almost a week, the world was in ignorance of a huge disaster in one of the most obsessed-over places on the planet. It's worrying to wonder whether we would have ever heard of it if the North's official Korean Central News Agency hadn't decided to reveal it.

This, of course, is just the latest illuminating example of how little we actually know about North Korea. ...

One problem with understanding North Korea is that few outside journalists can get any access. The Associated Press is the only Western new organization with a bureau there, yet it was unable to report on the apartment collapse until Sunday and was apparently forced to source much of its report to KCNA. The apparent failure of the AP to get on this story has prompted at least one angry response, from Joshua Stanton at the Web site Free Korea (where he makes the same reference as I do in this headline, albeit with more crude language).

I'd like to know how the AP even operates there. This tragedy could even be worse than the South Korean Costa Concordia for all one knows yet any information is scrubbed and filtered before one gets it. Furthermore, what we do know of North Korea is handled with such moral posturing one wonders why going through the pantomime anymore. Are there hashtags for every global catastrophe now?


On the home-front, there should be no reason why the Tories and the province-destroying Liberals are in a lock until one remembers how little the Ontario Liberal voter empathises with others:

It's a dead heat.

With three weeks to go before the June 12 Ontario election, a new Abacus Data poll shows the Kathleen Wynne Liberals and the Tim Hudak Progressive Conservatives are tied with 33% support among committed voters.

The object should be to unseat Wynne. That is the best a voter can hope for this June.

In other news, Justin Trudeau is still a douchebag just like his dad:

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau pleaded with supporters to stick with the party despite his edict that Grits "will be expected to vote pro-choice on any bills."

Trudeau issued a letter to party members Monday to try to ease the concerns of anyone "troubled" by his May 7 order to reject the candidacy of any Liberal who doesn't support abortion.

"I believe firmly in your right to hold your views, and that under my leadership there will always be a place for you in the Liberal Party of Canada," Trudeau said.

However, he also reminded Grits they can't act on their views if they would restrict abortion. ...

Trudeau also argued he's following the example of his father, former prime minister Pierre Trudeau, in setting aside personal beliefs.

But the elder Trudeau took a different stance in a 1981 letter to the then-archbishop of Toronto.

He told Gerald Emmett Cardinal Carter if a court ever establishes a right to abortion, "Parliament will continue to legislate on the matter by overriding the court's decision" by using the notwithstanding clause in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

There one has it. Freedom to dissent is permissible as long as one agrees with the leader.

Iranian actress Leila Hatami, co-star of Asghar Farhadi's 2011 Oscar winner A Separation, has become the target of outrage in her home country, after photos surfaced of her greeting Cannes Film Festival head Gilles Jacob with a kiss on the cheek, as is the French custom. ...

"Those who attend intentional events should take heed of the credibility and chastity of Iranians so that a bad image of Iranian women will not be demonstrated to the world," Noushabadi was quoted as saying on the website of state broadcaster IRIB.

"Iranian woman is the symbol of chastity and innocence," he said, adding that Hatami's presence at the festival was "inappropriate" and not in line with the country's religious beliefs.

... says the deputy culture minister in whose country women are stoned to death and nine year old girls can be married to old men.

Macklemore isn't an anti-Semite. He's just an accidental bigot:

Rapper Macklemore claims he wasn’t going for a “Jewish caricature” when he cobbled together the disguise that has accusations of anti-Semitism zipping around social media.

(Sidebar: this douche's fifteen minutes are up.)

The issue isn't (only) what Macklemore did or why but the nature of the knee-jerk reactionary behaviour of the heavily-infantilised left who seem oblivious to their actions and even more stunned when they are turned on. It's a sight to behold. One could have a rigorous discussion on anti-Semitism, freedom of expression or the appropriate reaction of what is deemed truly offensive but you can't have a discussion with people like this (not safe for work or even just watching this horrendous idiocy):

"We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile." 

See what's going on at the Fur. You'll be glad you did.


And now, we can re-build him. We have the technology:

Buttercup is an amazing duck, hatched with a deformed left foot. This new design features a movable ankle with plastic springs for support, tread on the bottom for grip, and a new sock retainer on the back! This entire foot is printed on a 3D printer unlike his 1st prosthetic prototype which was made using a hybrid 3D printing/urethane molding process.

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