Category Archives: General News

New Rule: ShitStarters | Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO)

via (4) New Rule: ShitStarters | Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) – YouTube


Why the US Lost the Vietnam War

Briefly summarizing, they began when, in 1946, Truman refused Ho Chi Minh’s request for help in evicting the French colonial occupiers.  He helped the French, instead.  This all but assured that the U.S. would never “win the hearts and minds” of the Vietnamese people.

The errors continued when, in 1955, Eisenhower set up a “South” Vietnam in order to evade the national elections that had been agreed to in settling the French defeat.  Eisenhower stated bluntly, “Our guys would have lost.”

Still more mistakes were to come.  Eisenhower foisted an alien ruler on his new country, a wealthy, Catholic, urban, mandarin from New Jersey, Ngo Diem.  The Vietnamese were poor, Buddhist, rural peasants.   Then, U.S. stood by as Diem took people’s land and gave it to his wealthy friends.  Ho Chi Minh took land from the French and distributed it to the people.

All of these moves only served to harden the Vietnamese people’s conviction that “South” Vietnam and its government were simply puppets for a different Western colonial occupier.  No such lackey regime could ever achieve political legitimacy.  And without political legitimacy, there could never be a long-term solution to the War.

Compounding the political failings were the failures of intelligence.  The most obvious of these was the confusion of nationalism with communism.  Vietnam was first and foremost a struggle for national independence.  The Vietnamese wanted the foriegn occupiers out of their country. The Americans should have understood this.  They had once fought a war of national independence to get the foreign occupiers out of their country.

Much more at Why the US Lost the Vietnam War | By | Common Dreams

‘Vote for Trump’: Las Vegas judge orders felons to meet probation requirements and re-elect Trump in 2020

A Las Vegas judge has reportedly made a practice of telling convicted felons to restore their voting rights so that they can help re-elect President Donald Trump in the 2020 election.

According to court transcripts obtained by The Nevada Independent, District Court Judge Susan Johnson encouraged at least two defendants who pleaded guilty to felony charges to follow through with their probation requirements and to “vote for Trump” in 2020.

The publication also spoke to “multiple criminal defense attorneys” who confirmed that the judge made the remarks to at least four defendants.

At one sentencing hearing on July 18, Johnson suspended Gregory Galazin’s 28-month prison sentence and placed him on probation even though he admitted to assault and battery with a deadly weapon. Johnson advised him to complete his probation requirements and he would have his voting rights restored in “plenty of time” to cast his ballot for the president.

via Raw Story ‘Vote for Trump’: Las Vegas judge orders felons to meet probation requirements and re-elect Trump in 2020

October 20 Energy News


How can I help the people of Puerto Rico?
One way is to donate at [this crowdfunding website].


¶ “Pollution’s Annual Price Tag? $4.6 Trillion and 9 Million Dead” Pollution in all its forms killed 9 million people in 2015 and, by one measure, led to economic damage of $4.6 trillion, according to a new estimate by medical researchers who hope to put the health costs of toxic air, water and soil higher on the global agenda. [Yahoo News]

Inner Mongolian landscape (Photo: Kevin Frayer | Getty Images)

¶ “There’s a Dangerous Bubble in the Fossil-Fuel Economy, and the Trump Administration Is Making It Worse” • Investors have increasingly recognized the long-term instability of high-carbon industries. We must limit our use of carbon, if we are to avoid destroying our civilization, and that means not using 80% of the reserves. [The New Yorker]

¶ “Turnbull’s energy…

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Ohio: Achievement Gaps Widen More in Charter Schools Compared to Public Schools

Ohio has done its very best to promote charters and vouchers. But it did a great disservice to charters by putting them in the state base. The data are there for all to see: with only a few exceptions, charter schools perform worse than public schools.

The latest release of data shows not only that graduates of public schools were more likely to graduate from college than graduates of charter schools, it also shows that achievement gaps grow wider in charter schools, in contrast to public schools.

Stephen Dyer of Innovation Ohio writes:

“Charter schools saw far greater performance gaps in reading and math than school districts. And, more troubling, a far greater percentage of gap growth compared with the previous school year.

“So achievement gaps are growing wider and quicker in Ohio charter schools than Ohio school districts…

via Ohio: Achievement Gaps Widen More in Charter Schools Compared to Public Schools | Diane Ravitch’s blog

The Psychology Behind Donald Trump’s Unwavering Support

The seemingly obvious solution would be to try to reach those people through political ads, expert opinions, and logical arguments that educate with facts. Except none of those things seem to be swaying any Trump supporters from his side, despite great efforts to deliver this information to them directly.

The Dunning-Kruger effect explains that the problem isn’t just that they are misinformed; it’s that they are completely unaware that they are misinformed. This creates a double burden.

Studies have shown that people who lack expertise in some area of knowledge often have a cognitive bias that prevents them from realizing that they lack expertise. As psychologist David Dunning puts it in an op-ed for Politico, “The knowledge and intelligence that are required to be good at a task are often the same qualities needed to recognize that one is not good at that task — and if one lacks such knowledge and intelligence, one remains ignorant that one is not good at the task. This includes political judgment.” Essentially, they’re not smart enough to realize they’re dumb.

via The Psychology Behind Donald Trump’s Unwavering Support | Psychology Today