I Wonder If Anyone Agrees

As most know and is plainly obvious, Cheetolini (aka Trump) plans to delay his trials until after the election, in the hope he can be reappointed by the “electoral college” without winning the popular vote (as he did in 2016) and then pardon himself before becoming presidente de por vida.

Also as most know, his “hire ’em and fire ’em” turnover of lawyers has been as rapid as a short order cook’s hamburger grill turnover.  But I’m starting to suspect that Cheetolini’s turnover of lawyers isn’t solely because he’s an abrasive jerk and a swindler who never pays.

I think he’s being an abrasive jerk and a swindler and not paying because he wants a constant turnover of lawyers.

I think lawyer turnover is a delay strategy: “I can’t find competent defence for trial! I need a continuation!”  He’s doing this to prevent the case going forward.  I predict that his current lawyers (John Lauro, et al) will be fired or quit by the end of the year, and Cheetolini will demand another delay to replace them and “let them prepare”.

If I could have judge Chutkan’s ear for one moment right now, I would tell her:

1) Appoint a group of legal aid public defence or other qualified lawyers in secret and give them the same evidence given to Lauro’s team.

2) If Cheetolini fires Lauro, appoint the public defenders and go forward with the trial anyway.  They will have a defence ready, and they are Georgia lawyers so they are qualified to work in those courts.

3) Jail Cheetolini for contempt, for using revolving door lawyers as a delay tactic.  Hold him until the trial begins to silence him from any social media activity.

4) Bar Cheetolini from changing his defence team, ordering that he MUST to go forward with the public defenders.

Cheetolini had and has access to adequate defence for trial.  If he gets rid of them, it’s because he doesn’t want lawyers, he wants a delay.

Appointing a qualified team in secret would guarantee him adequate defence, a speedy trial, and make appeals much harder.

Pirate, Curate, And Violate: Is the British Museum run by incompetents or thieves?

For decades, people have rightfully called for European countries to return stolen artefacts and antiquities to the countries they were taken from (see the second quoted text below).  The growing scandal at the British Museum may finally be the wake up call to make this happen.

It’s an absolute disgrace.  Between 1500 and 2000 items have been stolen, “misplaced”, or otherwise unaccounted for over decades.  Some of them that WERE in the BM seen for sale on ebay, or in the hands of “private collectors”.

‘Nobody was expecting it’: British Museum warned reputation seriously damaged and treasures will take decades to recover

Experts say loss of 1,500 items reveals lax cataloguing and boosts case for returning objects to countries of origin
Aug 26 2023

Close observers of the antiquities market tend to be a cynical bunch, having witnessed any number of scams, dubious practices and illicit trading. Yet there was a collective expression of shock among them last week when news emerged of the unexplained absence of a reported around 2,000 items from the British Museum’s priceless collection of ancient and historical artefacts, leading to the resignation of director Hartwig Fischer.

“The volume of missing objects is huge,” says Christos Tsirogiannis, a forensic archaeologist who works with Trafficking Culture, which researches global traffic in looted cultural objects. “No experts were expecting this to happen in one of the world’s biggest museums.”

Christopher Marinello agrees. The CEO of Art Recovery International, which specialises in recovering stolen art, he says: “Our organisation gets reports of theft every single day from various museums, cultural institutions, churches around the world. What surprised us was the fact that it was the British Museum, one of the most important museums in the world and a benchmark in security.”

That benchmark has fallen several notches after reports of precious artefacts going on sale on eBay, where one Roman object, it is said, valued at up to £50,000 was offered for just £40. Last week the museum announced that Peter Higgs, a senior curator who worked at the institution for 30 years, had been sacked earlier this year after items were found to be missing.

From Princeton University’s African American Studies Program, 2021:

Returning artifacts to Benin, West Africa helps a dehumanized society heal: Chika Okeke-Agulu

After France returned 26 cultural artifacts to the West African nation of Benin this week, one art historian says institutions still holding on to colonial loot need to “get the memo” and return cultural treasures to their homelands.

“They cannot play the ostrich, they have to face up [to] the reality and be on the right side of history,” said Chika Okeke-Agulu, a Nigerian art historian and African art professor at Princeton University.

The 26 items, including statues and a royal throne, were stolen by French forces in 1892, from the Kingdom of Dahomey in what is now the south of present-day Benin. The country’s president Patrice Talon met with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris Tuesday to mark the repatriation.

Experts estimate that thousands of African artworks and artifacts are still resting in museums and vaults far from their homelands — and there are growing calls for them to be returned. Germany has agreed to return hundreds of plaques and sculptures, known as the Benin bronzes, to Nigeria. 

The Sick Leave: Cheetolini may have a case of domain poisoning

In his latest video, Beau Of The Fifth Column reports that Cheetolini’s finance scam “Patriots Legal Defense Fund” (US spelling) has been “hacked”.  If you visit the PLDF site at this moment, you will see that it has been altered.  It now reads, in part, with links to the named sites:



In our country, everyone has to follow the rules, no matter who they are. Our Constitution, the big rule book of our nation, says that we’re all equal. Nobody gets special treatment.

I want to talk a bit about lying. A lie is when someone doesn’t tell the truth on purpose. It’s like saying you ate an apple when you really ate a cookie. Lying is bad because it breaks trust. Imagine if your friends didn’t believe you anymore because you lied a lot. In some cases, like when people lie to the courts or the police, it’s not just bad, it’s a crime.

[. . .]

Consider donating to the following organizations:

The Legal Defense Fund


Brennan Center For Justice

Rock The Vote


I disagree with BotFC about what happened.  If my guess is right, this is going to be delicious.

I did a Who Is search on “patriotlegaldefensefund.com”.  The domain registration payment was made three weeks ago, July 30, 2023, paid for five years in advance. The purchaser is anonymous.

Read godaddy’s blog (linked below) for domain renewal after the expiration date. The site owner will receive renewal payment requests, and has up to 30 days to respond. If they don’t respond, the domain can be purchased by other people. The old site owner has no legal means to demand its return after day 36, and must negotiate with the new domain owner.

Someone else can snag your expired domain, but not right away

[. . .]

Taking .com domains as a bases, the timeline is as follows:

GoDaddy makes the first billing attempt one day after the domain expires. If the billing fails, the domain name expires and the domain is parked. The domain can still be renewed at no cost.

On day four, GoDaddy makes the second billing attempt. Even though the expired domain can still be renewed at no extra cost, there might be interruptions in website and email services.

On day twelve, GoDaddy makes the third and last billing attempt. The owner can renew the expired domain within two days at no extra cost.

On day nineteen, the owner can still renew the expired domain but for the cost of a one-year renewal fee plus a redemption fee of $80.

If the expired domain isn’t renewed on the twenty-fifth day, the domain is added to the expired domain name auction and starting on day thirty, the domain can no longer be redeemed. The auction ends on the thirty-sixth day and if nobody buys it, the expired domain is returned to the registry and they may hold the domain before releasing it for general registration.

Given Chump’s history of non-payment to people (i.e. lawyers, cities, media costs, his own fake social media site, etc.), it wouldn’t surprise me if nobody paid godaddy and the renewal notices were ignored.  And if they failed to pay for thirty six days, and someone bought it….

Taking over a domain is only legally actionable if the new owner using the site for personal profit (i.e. continuing to ask for “donations” to Cheetolini and pocketing them). The new owner is NOT doing that. Instead, the new owner is asking that donations be given to legitimate charities. Cheetolini and his social mafia organization may have no legal recourse to stop this.

And no, this wouldn’t qualify as cybersquatting.


His Words Bite: Steve Shives is a treasure

If you’re not familiar with him, Steve Shives runs a youtube channel (along with other social media presence) where he primarily talks about Star Trek.  Incessantly.  Every episode, every series, delving into the philosophical and moral questions of the series.  I like Star Trek, but not that much.

Shives also has a very thoughtful and progressive Intersectional point of view.  He is an astoundingly good LGBTQIA ally (especially to Trans people), and his political commentary is gold, either direct commentary, or acted parody like the video below.

Someone must show this video to Ron Disingenuous.  He’d lose his lunch over the accuracy.

Starved Out: Houston’s new way of killing public education

As others have said elsewhere here before me, the Houston ISD “plan” to close libraries and create “discipline centres” is abhorrent.  And in a way that others haven’t yet mentioned, as awful as the selective and racist enforcement in US schools.

Poor neighborhoods are often described as food deserts because of the absence of supermarkets. People either have to travel long distances (if they can afford a car), or end up eating junk food.

Those neighborhoods can similarly be described as book deserts, too.  It’s unlikely that public libraries are nearby, public transit rarely serves poor neighborhoods, and the poor usually can’t afford to buy books.  For children of poor families, the school library is often their only access to affordable reading material.  And now the racists and classists want to board up that window to education.

Libraries are (and I’m speaking from experience) sometimes the most important thing to help kids start learning, to find their own motivation to try hard in schools.  It’s place with no pressure, no expectations.  For some kids, finding their own reasons to learn is what turns them into better students.

And now those scumbags want to take away that one source of books from the kids who need it the most.

I wish there were a way to place Little Free Libraries in neighborhoods like those.  But knowing how racist and classist governments behave, they would likely rip out and destroy any attempt to create one, calling it a “public hazard”.

A Flood Of Anger Washes Over: Kill the poor to protect the rich, in China

It’s not just the Russian regime that shows no concern for the lives of people living in the country.  In many ways, the Chinese regime is worse because of its stranglehold on the media, social media, and society.  It silences any reporting inside its “great firewall”.

A few days ago, many small cities, towns, and villiages in China were washed away, homes destroyed, crops ruined.  Over a million people have been displaced, and untold numbers of people have died.  In many of those villages, people of working age move to the bigger cities for work, leaving children and the elderly behind, the people least able to contend with or survive a wall of water.

The Corrupt Criminal Psychopaths (CCP) have told the media to falsely report these as “floods”.  A flood infers a natural event, too much rain from a typhoon.  And even if a dam burst, it could still be labelled as a flood.   But this wasn’t a flood, and the capitalist corporate media initially parroted the CCP’s line:

More than a million displaced and dozens dead after record rain drenches northeastern China

More than a million people have been forced from their homes by the remnants of a storm in China’s northeastern Hebei province, according to state media, as officials warned it could take a month for the waters to recede in some areas.

Typhoon Doksuri slammed into southeastern China’s Fujian province on July 28 before weakening and making its way north.

The rains that followed soaked Hebei, a province of 75 million, and the neighboring cities of Beijing and Tianjin. Flooding in those regions stranded residents, washed away bridges and highways, killing about 30 people in total, according to Chinese authorities.

“Thirty deaths”.  Yeah, that’s about as believable as China’s reported Covid-19 death toll.

A couple of youtube channels I watch on China have said differently about this.  They reported the “floods” as deliberate releases, directing the excess water to places with smaller populations. Unfortunately, some of them don’t cite their sources, so they can’t be treated as “news”, even though they get a lot of facts right.

Now there is a verified source for the story.  Reuters reports that the smaller municipalities were deliberately sacrificed to save the capital.  These people were left to die and fend for themselves.  Reuters doesn’t mention when the water releases started, but the unverified source mentioned above says the decision was made at 2am.

While people were asleep in their homes.  That’s how 300,000 people died in Thailand and Indonesia in 2004, because the 8.9 earthquake happened at 8am on a Sunday morning, while everyone was asleep.  If the numbers aren’t covered up, I expect the actual number of missing to be much higher.

China floodwater diversions to populated areas unleash wave of online anger

Nearly 1 million people in China’s northern Hebei province were relocated after record rains forced authorities to channel water from swollen rivers to some populated areas for storage, sparking anger online over the homes sacrificed to save Beijing.

The vast Hai River basin covers an area the size of Poland that includes Hebei, Beijing, Tianjin. Over a span of one week from late July, the region with a population totalling 110 million experienced its most serious flooding in six decades, with Hebei, particularly Baoding prefecture, the worst hit.

According to flood control laws, when basin-wide flooding causes reservoirs, the first line of defence, to exceed their limits, water may be temporarily channelled to so-called “flood storage areas” – including low-lying populated land.

On July 31, Hebei province opened seven of its 13 designated flood storage areas, including two in the city of Zhuozhou in Baoding south of Beijing and north of Xiongan, a zone President Xi Jinping aims to develop into an economic powerhouse serving Hebei, Beijing and Tianjin.

On Aug. 1, Hebei’s Communist Party Secretary Ni Yuefeng called Xiongan a top priority for the province’s flood prevention work, according to local state media.

On his visit to flood storage areas in Baoding, Ni added that it was necessary to reduce the pressure on Beijing’s flood control and create a “moat” for the Chinese capital.

“Beijing should foot the bill”, wrote a netizen on the popular Chinese microblog Weibo.

In other posts on Zhuozhou, netizens said residents weren’t aware they lived in a flood storage area and the rights of the minority had been sacrificed.

“I’d like to know, among all the people living in flood storage areas across the country, how many of them know they are living in such areas?” one angry netizen asked.

The Kuritsy Are Coming Home To Roost: And to rape and pillage

According to google translate, “kuritsy” is plural for chicken.

As was predicted by many, recruiting convicts from Russian prisons was a bad idea.  They wouldn’t have signed up if suicide missions were the only type of fighting (though doubtless that’s what many were sent on).  They certainly wouldn’t have signed up if going back meant going back to prison.  No, the only way they would go is for lighter sentences or full release.

Wagner began recruiting prisoners in August 2022, meaning thousands have finished six month contracts.  While many of them were used as cannon fodder, they weren’t all killed. (How many died due to inexperience in combat, lacking training?)  Inevitably, some of them would eventually return back to Russia, let loose on the street.

Loose, as in loose cannons.  Full of anger and alcohol after enduring at least six months of violence and watching thousands die around them.

From The Daily Beast, August 3, 2023:

Convicted Murderer Freed to Fight in Ukraine Accused of Butchering Six When He Got Back Home

A Russian ex-convict who was apparently freed from prison to take part in the war against Ukraine has now been accused of returning home and butchering six people in a drunken rampage.

Igor Sofonov, 37, is one of two suspects arrested in the Republic of Karelia after authorities discovered two burned down homes containing the remains of six people who’d been stabbed to death. The victims were identified as a 39-year-old man and his 71-year-old father in one home, and a man and his wife, brother, and a pensioner in the second home.

Police say a “long-standing domestic conflict” motivated the savage murders in the village of Derevyannoye but gave no further details.

Along with Sofonov, another ex-con named Maksim Bochkarev is also accused of taking part. At a court hearing Wednesday, Sofonov told reporters he’d taken part in the war, according to Karelia News. It was not immediately clear if Bochkarev, too, had been involved in the bloodshed in Ukraine.

Investigators confirmed that both Sofonov and Bochkarev had lengthy track records for “serious crimes” and had served prison time, but it was not immediately clear when and under what circumstances they were released.

More below.

[Read more…]

A Story Well Told: War Games at 40

The film “War Games” was released on June 3, 1983, forty years ago.  (I meant to get to this earlier.)  Hollyweird is often terrible when it comes to computer and technology in movies, but War Games was (both then and now) one of the more realistic and believable computer films. It shouldn’t surprise you then to learn that the “War Games” screenwriters Lawrence Lasker and Walter Parkes also wrote “Sneakers” (1992).  Some details in the movie seem less credible (i.e. the idea that a hacker could break into NORAD), but several events depicted happened both before and after the movie.

[Read more…]

Something To Follow Up: An essay (in video form) on scientific fraud

Directly quoting his biography, Eric J. Vanman is an Associate Professor in the School of Psychology at the University of Queensland Australia.  In this short (15 minute) video below, he uses clear language and succinctly describes the problem and causes of scientific fraud, why it’s pervasive, and what can be done about it.  It’s a great intro for those not scientifically inclined, or for those who might be anti-science willing to hear someone admit scientists aren’t perfect.