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How Amazon And Facebook Help Hate Groups.


      Facebook and Amazon Help Hate Groups Raise Money

      Karla Ann Cote/AP

      These companies’ donation platforms benefit organizations that push discrimination.

      I have a Facebook account; I’ve had it for years. I get to see pictures of family in states other than my own on Facebook. I have also used Amazon to buy a book I wanted and to get some needed hardware. I had no idea these companies helped hate groups fund raise through philanthropy tools that they host on their platforms; but when I subscribed to Facebook, I didn’t know that they were aware of Russians invading our elections by putting up fake accounts and trolling participants either.

      Now it has come to light that the mighty Amazon, and the compromised Facebook have become players in helping hate groups, even though Amazon has tried to shut them out, and Facebook does sometimes as well.

      The Guardian has posted about how anti vaccination groups have been fundraising on Amazon, using this platform to spread misinformation that makes it difficult for subscribers to make an informed decision; and from where I stand, causing epidemics of various diseases that harm children. Now we learn that other hate groups are flourishing using such platforms.

      Mother Jones’ Ali Breland has provided information about how Amazon and facebook are helping hate groups to raise money.


      Mother Jones found dozens of white supremacist and anti-LGBTQ organizations that appear to have access to Facebook’s Fundraiser tool, which lets users and organizations collect money for non-profits. One beneficiary is the National Policy Institute, the think tank of alt-right figure Richard Spencer, which has peddled racist and white supremacist ideals. Other groups that appear to be part of Facebook’s fundraising portal include the white-nationalist website VDare and several Islamophobic organizations labeled as hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), including the Christian Action Network and the Center for Security Policy.

      AmazonSmile, a program through which Amazon donates 0.5% of eligible transactions to non-profits, appears to have filtered out some noxious groups—like VDare and the National Policy Institute—that Facebook allows users to donate to. But AmazonSmile includes a variety of state-level anti-LGBTQ non-profits affiliated with national organizations identified by the SPLC as anti-LGBTQ hate groups, including the Alliance Defending Freedom and the Family Research Council. The local organizations include the Alaska Family Council (a “local anti-LGBT extremist” group, according to the SPLC, that has opposed state discrimination laws) along with Idaho’s Cornerstone Family Council, South Carolina’s Palmetto Family Council, and dozens of other similar organizations.

      The groups’ presence appears to violate the platform’s terms of agreementfor AmazonSmile participants, which bar nonprofits that “engage in, support, encourage, or promote” actions or ideologies of “intolerance, discrimination or discriminatory practices based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation, or age.”

      In an emailed statement, an Amazon spokesperson pointed to the terms, saying that “Charitable organizations must meet the requirements outlined in our participation agreement to be eligible for AmazonSmile.”

      “Organizations that engage in, support, encourage, or promote intolerance, hate, terrorism, violence, money laundering, or other illegal activities are not eligible,” the spokesperson continued. “If at any point an organization violates this agreement, its eligibility will be revoked. Since 2013, Amazon has relied on the US Office of Foreign Assets Control and the Southern Poverty Law Center to help us make these determinations.”

      While Facebook’s Fundraiser tool doesn’t appear to have similar restrictions, discriminatory groups fundraising through the system may be in violation of the company’s broader community standards, which ban hate speech on the grounds of “race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, caste, sex, gender, gender identity, and serious disease or disability.”

      Facebook has removed far-right organizations from its platform in the past, banning several white supremacist groups in the wake of 2017’s violent demonstrations in Charlottesville, and, eventually, pages associated with Richard Spencer including one for the National Policy Institute and another for his website, Altright.com. Facebook did not respond to a request for comment before publication.

      Heidi Beirich, who directs the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Intelligence Project monitoring extremists and hate groups, credits Amazon’s overall efforts to curb the presence of hate groups on its platform, despite the persistent presence of some smaller, local discriminatory organizations. “They’ve been really good about trying to stop the pipeline to hate groups,” Beirich said, citing the company’s outreach to SPLC, and blacklists the watchdog provided when AmazonSmile launched that the company had used to restrict access to the tool. Beirich guessed the smaller, state-level groups on AmazonSmile weren’t on the lists.

      Beirich was more critical of Facebook permitting national hate organizations like the National Policy Institute and VDare to fundraise through its platform.

      “This should not be going on. Facebook should not be letting this happen,” she said firmly. “Keeping hate groups from having money keeps them from being able to do the terrible things that they want to do. The money aspect of it is by far of the most important. It’s their lifeblood.”

      The fundraising platforms play host to many other controversial groups. Mother Jones spotted several instances of fraudulent non-profits using Facebook and Amazon’s donation tools, including Humanwire, whose founder pleaded no contest in October to charity fraud charges for embezzling $130,000 raised on behalf of Syrian refugees, as well as the Retired Enlisted Association Memorial Foundation, a veteran-assistance group that was shut down for fraud. Extremist and fringe organizations were also on the platforms, such as the Oath Keepers militia on Facebook and, on AmazonSmile, several groups that appear to be state affiliates of the Three Percent militia.

      In March, the Guardian reported that anti-vaccination groups were fundraising on AmazonSmile. As of Monday, Mother Jones found that several such groups—including the National Vaccine Information Center, Physicians for Informed Consent, and Age of Autism—were still on Amazon, and also enjoyed access to Facebook’s fundraising portal. Both companies have had broader issues with anti-vaccination content on their platforms; on Thursday, Facebook announced new steps and policies to reduce the spread of “vaccination misinformation.”

      Beirich said that despite Facebook’s recent work on things like vaccine misinformation, she’s disappointed with the company’s broader approach to hate groups. To her, the fundraising is just the latest example of the company failing to adequately police extremist groups.

      “I’m interested to see why Facebook can’t seem to get these policies right,” she said. “They need to get their hate policies in order.”


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      Pundit Post

          Palestine” has been compared to many things. The world’s longest colonial war, a “hell-disaster” – Churchill’s memorable epithet – and the site of Israel’s “war on terror”, a conflict in which we are supposed to believe that the Palestinians are playing the role of al-Qaeda or Isis or any other outfit which the west and its allies have helped into existence, and which Israel is going to fight on our behalf.

          But there are times when Palestine turns out to have been located in the Bermuda Triangle. The Palestinians disappear. They cease to exist. They are forgotten, irrelevant, outside the landscape of fear, pain, injustice and occupation that we once heard about so often. No one can imagine what has happened to these Palestinians. Like the aircraft and boats which strayed into the mythical triangle, they shouldn’t have been there in the first place. Sad to see them go. But it’s a mystery.

          The last two weeks have been a case in point. Trump’s fey and vain son-in-law Jared Kushner, a supporter of Israel’s colonial expansion on Arab land, set off with Trump’s “special representative to the peace process” Jason Greenblatt (the man who says that “West Bank settlements are not an obstacle to peace”) to work out the economic underpinning of Trump’s “deal of the century” to solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

          Kushner went to visit some Muslim killer-states, some of them with very nasty and tyrannical leaders – Saudi Arabia and Turkey among them – to chat about the “economic dimension” of this mythical deal.

          Middle East leaders may be murderers with lots of torturers to help them stay in power, but they are not entirely stupid. It’s clear that Kushner and Greenblatt need lots and lots of cash to prop up their plans for the final destruction of Palestinian statehood – we are talking in billions – and the Arab leaders they met did not hear anything about the political “dimension” of Trump’s “deal”. Because presumably there isn’t one. After all, Trump thinks that by moving the US embassy to Jerusalem and declaring it the capital of Israel, he has taken that most holy of cities “off the table”.

          Our titans of journalism were silent – maybe they, too, fell into the Bermuda Triangle – and had absolutely nothing to say, absolutely zilch, about Kushner’s march of folly around the Middle East. They called it, inevitably, a “whirlwind tour” in which this foolish young man would – readers will recognize CNN’s equally inevitable clichés – “prep allies for a spring rollout” of the “plan”.

          This very vagueness is amazing, because the Kushner-Greenblatt fandango was in fact a very historic event. It was unprecedented as well as bizarre, unequalled in recent Arab history for its temerity as well as its outrageous assumption.

          For this was the first time in modern Arab history – indeed modern Muslim history – that America has constructed and prepared a bribe BEFORE the acquiescence of those who are supposed to take the money; before actually telling the Palestinians and other Arabs what they are supposed to do in order to get their hands on the loot.

          Usually, the Americans or the EU come up with highfalutin “peace” proposals – two states, security for Israel, viability for Palestinians, talks about a joint capital, an end to Jewish colonies on occupied Arab land, mutual trust-building, refugees, the usual paint-pots – and then gently suggest that it might be financially worthwhile for everyone to start talking.

          But now the bank account is being set up before the customers’ agreement. The banks themselves – we have to include Saudi Arabia, do we not? – have not even been told what investments their funds are meant to support. How many times can you fit a South Sea Bubble into a Bermuda Triangle?

          It’s not a blank cheque the Americans want from the Arabs. It’s going to be a very big cheque with specific amounts, to be given to a people who have never – as an occupied, repressed, abandoned community – ever demanded cash from anyone. Sure – and this has been a Kushner theme – Palestinians would be happier if they were better off.

          But who has ever seen, in all the bloody Palestinians protests, demonstrations and cries of despair and massacres, a single poster – just one demand – for prime business opportunities, new motorways, five-star hotels, hospitals or pre-natal clinics?

          Palestinian demands have been uniformly identical: justice, dignity, freedom and – yes – the return of lost lands, if only of those properties thieved from them by Israel in the West Bank. Of the thousands of unarmed innocents eviscerated in the great Gaza wars, which of their families is now going to settle for an American cheque in return for the end of all their ideals, dreams and political demands? But then again, what do we care for any of those families?

          For the Bermuda Triangle sucked into its vortex these past few days yet another Palestinian victim: the UN’s preliminary report on the mass killings by Israeli troops and snipers of unarmed Palestinians in Gaza demonstrating since 30 March last year – against their imprisonment in the enclave and their right, under UN General Assembly Resolution 194, to return to their families’ original homes or receive compensation for them.

          More than 200 Palestinians have been killed and around 18,000 wounded. The UN investigated 189 fatalities. Its researchers thought that perhaps on two occasions, armed Palestinian men may have infiltrated the crowds to shoot at the Israeli army, but even the briefest reading of the UN report’s 22 pages makes it perfectly clear that the dead were largely the victims of deliberate and aimed shots. They included journalists, health workers, children. Israel may have committed war crimes, the UN report concluded.

          But each new war, each new set of casualties, each new UN report has become normal. Or perhaps the word is “normalised”. None more so than the 25 February UN document. The demonstrators belonged to the “terrorist” Hamas, according to Israel. The investigation was a “theatre of the absurd”, announced Israel’s spokesman, “a report that is hostile, mendacious and biased against Israel”.

          But what did we expect? Ever since Israel trashed and demeaned and politically destroyed that great Jewish jurist Richard Goldstone after his devastating critique of the 2008-2009 Israeli bombardment of Gaza – the accusations by Israel and Jewish Americans of his antisemitism and his innate “evil” (the latter from Alan Dershowitz, of course) make even US Democrat Ilhan Omar’s sins look childlike – UN reports have been little more than wallpaper. Yet none of this matters.

          The Palestinians are even supposed to be duped by the closure of the US consulate in Jerusalem and its merger with Washington’s embassy in Israel to enhance “the efficiency and effectiveness of [America’s] diplomatic engagements”, according to the ambassador David Friedman, who also, by extraordinary chance, supports Israel’s land expropriations in the West Bank but claims he wants a “two-state solution”.

          Hanan Ashrawi simply and eloquently explained that the merging of the consulate with the embassy “is not an administrative decision. It is an act of political assault on Palestinian rights and identity, and a negation of the consulate’s historic status and function, dating back nearly 200 years.” She was quite right. And no one paid the slightest attention. The US consulate simply got swallowed up by the Bermuda Triangle.

          Is all this because Trump has now steamrolled morality and so indelibly soiled the American flag that we have all, somehow, closed down in the Middle East on ideas like principles, promises and humanity, and accepted everlasting night – even if the latter is referred to as the deal of the century? Is that what happens when you fall into the Bermuda Triangle? Goodbye to the Palestinians. Didn’t they know this was dangerous territory? Hadn’t they heard the stories? It’s all a mystery if you ask me.


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          Perhaps it is time for us to consider a proposal to consider and age requirement for members of Congress as we do for the office of the President. Aristotle said that our youth should not be involved in politics because they are to emotional, sporadic, and easily deceived by other adults because of their lack of experience in the world around them.


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          Trump Bashes Airplane Technology After Boeing Crash


              Trump bashes airplane technology

              after Boeing crash:

              'I don’t want Albert Einstein to be my pilot'

              AP Photo

              Ground crew chat near a Boeing 737 MAX 8 parked on tarmac in China. Governments

              of China, the United Kingdom, Australia, Indonesia and other countries grounded 737

              Max 8's in their airspace in response to the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines flight last weekend.




              President Donald Trump on Tuesday complained that modern planes are becoming too complicated for pilots, as countries around the world ground the Boeing 737 Max 8 after a deadly crash in Ethiopia.

              "Airplanes are becoming far too complex to fly. Pilots are no longer needed, but rather computer scientists from MIT. I see it all the time in many products. Always seeking to go one unnecessary step further, when often old and simpler is far better," Trump wrote on Twitter.

              He continued: "Split second decisions are....needed, and the complexity creates danger. All of this for great cost yet very little gain. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want Albert Einstein to be my pilot. I want great flying professionals that are allowed to easily and quickly take control of a plane!"

              The tweet comes shortly after the governments of China, the United Kingdom, Australia, Indonesia and other countries grounded 737 Max 8's in their airspace in response to the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines flight last weekend.

              Another 737 Max 8 crashed in Indonesia in October, raising concerns about the plane's safety. The 737 family is one of Boeing's most popular planes with a strong safety record, but the Max 8 has raised concerns for possibly barring pilots from overpowering automated functions.

              Several U.S. carriers have maintained the plane is safe and continue to use it on hundreds of flights a day without incident. But that hasn't stopped lawmakers including Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Mitt Romney (R-Utah) from calling for a grounding.

              "Out of an abundance of caution for the flying public, the @FAANews should ground the 737 MAX 8 until we investigate the causes of recent crashes and ensure the plane’s airworthiness,"Romney tweeted Tuesday.

              Presidential hopeful Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) shared a similar sentiment. "While we do not know the causes of these crashes, serious questions have been raised about whether these planes were pressed into service without additional pilot training in order to save money," Warren said in a statement.

              Trump has a history of offering his opinion on the aviation industry — though his experience is largely limited to launching a failed airline in 1989. While christening Trump Shuttle, Trump scandalized business executives by claiming Pan Am had a poor and negligent safety record — a below-the-belt move in the airline industry, The Boston Globe reported.

              Trump also claimed early last year that his administration had a hand in improving aviation safety.

              “Since taking office I have been very strict on Commercial Aviation,” Trump tweeted in January 2018. “Good news - it was just reported that there were Zero deaths in 2017, the best and safest year on record!”

              The tweet referred to reports that there were no deaths related to passenger jets in 2017, but did not mention the deaths related to cargo and non-jet aircraft. It also glossed over the fact that the U.S. had gone years without a single jet passenger death going back to 2009.

              * * *


              The New York Times reported Monday that Boeing and the FAA decided flight crews did not need to be informed about the change to the flight control system (MCAS) at least in part to minimize the costs of retraining pilots.

              Aviation experts already suspect that the culprit is a new system on the 737 Max 8 called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, or MCAS. It was designed to counteract a shift in the center of gravity due to bigger, more fuel-efficient engines that increase the potential for the nose to pitch up after take-off.

              The danger for pilots unfamiliar with the system is to be surprised in the middle of busy takeoff check list when the system automatically pushes the nose down. The crash site in Ethopia shows a deep crater where the aircraft nosed into to the ground at high speed.

              RVC 3-12-2019

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              Pundit Post

              The Person Who Defines The Presidential Race And Can Defeat Trump....


                  The person who defeats Trump won't be someone who is a mirror reflection of the status quo - but their own person, running a fearless campaign that isn't solely about Trump.

                  Someone right now - not afraid to stare down big money and tell big money to go to hell. The person with solutions that have been campaign platform cemented, not a continuation of how the status quo does anything. Ryan has a point. If the goal is to take the White House out of Donald's hands.

                  As House Speaker - Ryan was a miserable status quo facilitating failure - he should know, people. He should know... and he is going to make bank now talking about it. Ironic.


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                      I think this is a good idea, but it is unlikely to advance. The plan makes it likely that control of the senate is not in question. Democrats will get two additional senators for Northern California and Republicans get two for Southern California. California is unchanged.


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                      DICTATORIAL WAR ON RELIGION



                          Another Agenda Driven Rewrite of the Bible this time to Preserve the Dictatorial Communist Elite

                          COMMUNIST WAR ON POVERTY

                          (To maintain the Dictatorial Communist Elite they plan to eliminate Rural Poverty by 2020)


                          FINANCED BY THE WORLD BANK


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