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The Intel Community Needs to Fire Someone—Fast

Kevin Drum - 8 hours 53 min ago

The US intelligence community has screwed up. Someone (or multiple someones) passed along British intel about the Manchester bombing to US reporters before it had been publicly released. This is bad for at least three reasons:

  • It quite possibly impedes an active investigation.
  • It pisses off British intelligence.
  • It gives Donald Trump a very reasonable excuse to demand an investigation into leaking from our intelligence agencies.

This is a bit like the reporters who fail to verify their stories properly and end up making mistakes. It might not happen very often, but it gives Trump ammunition for his claims that the media is out to get him with endless fake news. For that reason, reporters in the age of Trump need to be doubly careful about what they write.

If the intel community is smart, it will figure out where these leaks came from and fire someone fast. But are they smart?

UPDATE: I'm using "intel community" in a very broad sense here since we don't know where the leak came from. It includes the FBI, which recent reporting has suggested is the most likely culprit.

Categories: Politics

Oscar Wilde

Quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"Everything popular is wrong."
Categories: Misc

Lee Iacocca

Quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"Trouble shared is trouble halved."
Categories: Misc

Michel de Montaigne

Quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"My trade and art is to live."
Categories: Misc

Thomas Hardy

Quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"Fear is the mother of foresight."
Categories: Misc

Helen Hunt Jackson

Love quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"When love is at its best, one loves so much that he cannot forget."
Categories: Misc

Torquato Tasso

Love quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"Love is when you don't have to be with another person to touch their heart!"
Categories: Misc

John Henry Newman

Love quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"The love of our private friends is the only preparatory exercise for the love of all men."
Categories: Misc

Stendhal

Love quote of the day - 8 hours 54 min ago
"If you don't love me, it does not matter, anyway I can love for both of us."
Categories: Misc

Paul Ryan just can't stop digging that Trumpcare hole

Daily Kos - 8 hours 57 min ago

The bullshit is flying today from House Republicans after the very bad CBO score for Zombie Trumpcare—the bill they passed three weeks ago without having seen the numbers. Here's Speaker Paul Ryan:

x

Yes, I’m sure all the “people who are less healthy (including those with pre-existing or newly acquired medical conditions) [who] would ultimately be unable to purchase comprehensive nongroup health insurance at premiums comparable to those under current law, if they could purchase it at all” will have great peace of mind knowing their state could “customize solutions.” 

Now let’s get back to reality:

x

But I’m sure those 23 million people will have great peace of mind knowing that Republicans are looking out for their “freedom.”

Categories: Politics

New Pokémon game is based on Magikarp, the weakest Pokémon ever

iDownloadBlog - 9 hours 7 min ago

If you’re no longer interested in playing Pokémon GO on a regular basis, how about another mobile Pokémon game? Your wish is Pokémon Company’s command! Today, they released a new Pokémon game on App Store, based on the weakest Pokémon ever— Magikarp.

Titled Pokémon Magikarp Jump and available on App Store as a freemium download with optional In-App Purchases, the game requires you to raise multiple generations of Magikarp.

You must feed and train your creatures, boosting their stats and Jump Power before challenging other players in six leagues to increase your own Trainer Rank. Those who do well in jumping tournaments can get commemorative photos of their achievement that can be shared on social media to show the world how well they’ve trained their Magikarp.

If you’re new to the Pokémon phenomenon, here’s a little backgrounder on Magikarp.

Magikarp is a creature famous for being pathetically weak, unreliable and generally useless. It cannot be taught any powerful moves—all it does is flop around and splash. If your Magikarp flops too high, it is sometimes snagged by the bird Pokémon Pidgeotto.

Check out the launch trailer below.

If Magikarp gets knocked out during a training session, or retires upon reaching level 20, you’ll start over with a new generation of Magikarp that’s a little bit stronger than your last.

Some Pokémon you encounter may give you food to keep your Magikarp nourished.

Following the initial launch in Italy, Japan and several other countries, Pokémon Magikarp Jump is now officially available in the US App Store. Non-obligatory In-App Purchases let you spend cash on various upgrades to speed up your training, replenish your food stock, catch more Magikarp and so forth.

Grab Pokémon Magikarp Jump for free from US App Store.

"New Pokémon game is based on Magikarp, the weakest Pokémon ever" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
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Categories: Misc

Facebook adding Apple News support to Instant Article tools to increase adoption

9to5Mac - 9 hours 10 min ago

Facebook introduced its Instant Article format for publishers two years ago as a way to make loading content in the News Feed much faster, but the format hasn’t been adopted as widely as the social network had hoped. Now Facebook is rolling out new tools for publishers to make Instant Articles compatible with Apple News and Google AMP formats.

more…

Categories: Misc

And Now, a Brief Definition of the Web

Slashdot - 9 hours 18 min ago
Dieter Bohn, writing for The Verge: Traditionally, we think of the web as a combination of a set of specific technologies paired with some core philosophical principles. The problem -- the reason this question even matters -- is that there are a lot of potential replacements for the parts of the web that fix what's broken with technology, while undermining the principles that ought to go with it. [...] A lot of tech companies are flailing around looking for ways to fix this problem. There are web apps that work in Chrome but not really all that well elsewhere. There are Instant Articles in Facebook and AMP pages on Google. There are Instant Android apps that stream to your phone over the internet instead of being installed, which go away when you're done with them just like a browser tab. Google claims to be trying to bring some of the open ethos of the web to smart speakers. Hell, go back to 2014 and you'll find Apple pundit John Gruber arguing we should consider apps and "anything transmitted using HTTP and HTTPS" as part of the web. [...] And now, a brief definition of the web: To count as being part of the web, your app or page must: 1. Be linkable, and 2. Allow any client to access it. That's it.

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Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Misc

Apple Music announces Sigrid as this month’s Up Next artist

9to5Mac - 9 hours 26 min ago

Following up on last month’s release, Apple Music has announced that Sigrid is May’s Up Next artist. Up Next is a new documentary artist series from Apple Music that focuses on up and coming musicians.

more…

Categories: Misc

9to5Toys Last Call: 12-inch MacBook up to $500 off, iHome HomeKit Smart Plug $42, Apple iPhone 7 Silicone Cases $24, more

9to5Mac - 9 hours 28 min ago

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

TODAY’S CAN’T MISS DEALS:

Last Call Updates:

Apple’s Great Games for $1 Sale: BADLAND, Assassin’s Creed, many more

Best Buy takes $350 off 12-inch MacBook + open-box deals up to $500 off

iHome SmartPlug with HomeKit/Alexa hits Amazon all-time low: $42 shipped

Apple’s official Silicone iPhone 7 cases are on sale at Amazon from $24

Apple’s 9.7-inch iPad Pro gets $124 discount, priced from $475

Best Buy is clearing out official Apple Watch Sport Bands, starting at $34 (or less)

Apple 13-inch MacBook Air 256GB gets a $279 discount to $920 shipped

Assassin’s Creed Identity for iOS drops to just $1 (Reg. $5)

Review: iClever’s Surge Protector packs 12 ports to charge your gear [Deal] Review: This is Ground takes on Apple Watch in style w/ new Connoisseur bands

9to5Rewards: Twelve South Action Sleeve for Apple Watch [Giveaway] MORE NEW GEAR FROM TODAY:

 

Brother Wireless Color Inkjet All-In-One Printer w/ AirPrint for $60 (Reg. $80) NEW PRODUCTS & MORE:

8Bitdo rolls out free Nintendo Switch support for all its retro-style controllers

Two:35 is a computer building kit for kids that can actually get them certification

DJI’s new $499 Spark drone offers gesture controls, compact design [Gallery] MORE DEALS STILL LIVE:

Pad & Quill offering 20% off leather/linen iPad & Apple Watch accessories

Hands-on: Clockwork Synergy’s stylish Apple Watch bands, save 30% [Exclusive]

 

iOttie’s premium iTap Smartphone Car Mounts drop to $19 (over 20% off) Anker iPhone/Android Dashboard Mount drops to $14 (Reg. $24)

more…

Categories: Misc

Video: first hands-on with iPhone 8 dummy

iDownloadBlog - 9 hours 31 min ago

Apple’s iPhone 8 should feature a whole new industrial design with an almost full-screen face, a 2.5D curved OLED screen, no physical Home button, an in-screen fingerprint reader and other perks. Earlier this week, leakster Benjamin Geskin posted what files as the first hands-on video featuring a CNC-machined iPhone 8 dummy model.

Don’t read too much into this report— this is a dummy iPhone 8 unit after all, and as such for display only. It’s not a real working phone nor is it one of the iPhone 8 prototypes.

And here it is.

Don’t let the lack of an Apple logo on the backside confuse you: this is, as I’ve said, a mockup that matches up with a bunch of the rumors we’ve heard thus far.

That said, the clip provides a good approximation of what a future iPhone with a nearly full-screen front face might look like. Be sure to check out another iPhone mockup that leaked last week, which could be representative of the final design Apple settled on.

Apple is said to have tested about ten different iPhone prototypes.

Some of them probably sport a rear Touch ID, just in case Apple’s plan to integrate a next-generation fingerprint sensor into the display assembly falls apart. To give you a better idea what an iPhone with a rear Touch ID might look like, do check out the images of an iPhone 8 clone from China, some of which you can see above.

Apple is likely to unveil its 2017 iPhone lineup at a media event in September.

Aside from a new premium design and a full-front OLED display, iPhone 8 is widely expected to feature wireless charging, 3D facial scanning, a ten-nanometer A11 chip designed by Apple, augmented reality features and, of course, iOS 11 that Apple will preview at WWDC next month.

"Video: first hands-on with iPhone 8 dummy" is an article by iDownloadBlog.com.
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Categories: Misc

House Members Go Full IOKIYAR On Body Slamming

Crooks and Liars - 9 hours 31 min ago
House Members Go Full IOKIYAR On Body Slamming

Turns out it's okay if you're a Republican to body slam a reporter and break his glasses, because he asked a question about a CBO score?

And look, if this was a bunch of trolls on Twitter, I wouldn't waste time on it. These are Republican elected officials excusing this kind of behavior.

Categories: Politics

Lawyer arrested after allegedly threatening rape victim with deportation for testifying

Daily Kos - 9 hours 43 min ago

A Baltimore-based attorney has been arrested and charged with obstruction of justice and witness intimidation, after allegedly threatening a rape victim and her husband with deportation, saying that they could get swept up by federal immigration agents if they tried to go to court and testify against his client, who has been charged “with second-degree rape, third- and fourth-degree sex offenses, and second-degree assault,” according to the Baltimore Sun.

Attorney Christos Vasiliades, and his accomplice Edgar Ivan Rodriguez, also offered the couple $3,000 in cash “if their absence in court got the case ‘thrown out,’ court documents show, then encouraged the couple to track down the defendant and ‘kick his ass.’” According to the Washington Post, the couple felt threatened by the interaction and went straight to law enforcement. Authorities then equipped the couple with a recording device and had them arrange a follow-up meeting with Vasiliades and Rodriguez, who again brought up deportation threats, saying ICE was “looking at this case.” The Baltimore Sun:

"You know how things are with Trump's laws now; someone goes to court, and boom, they get taken away," Rodriguez told the victim's husband in the recorded conversation, according to an indictment by the Maryland attorney general's office.

Vasiliades also offered an alternative solution: Just beat up his client.

"If we were back home where I'm from, from Greece ... we would go (expletive) him up, that's it, if you want to do that, that's fine," Vasiliades was recorded saying, according to court documents. "He's an (expletive), I think you should find him and kick his (expletive), personally."

Vasiliades was arrested Tuesday afternoon in the hallway of the Courthouse East building, as the trial of his client, Mario Aguilar-Delosantos, was set to start, according to the sheriff's office and court records.

“Part of it, we allege, is a good old fashioned bribe, but the threat that the witness would be deported is sadly new,” said Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh, “and I think it arises out of the climate of fear in the immigrant community over the change in policy for deportations.” A state of fear has been a constant feature of Trump’s administration, and it’s something Vasiliades and his accomplice gladly took full advantage of.

Categories: Politics

CBO Agrees: Trumpcare Wipes Out Protections for Pre-Existing Conditions

Kevin Drum - 9 hours 44 min ago

Earlier this month I passed along a note from Matthew Fiedler of the Brookings Institution. Long story short, he suggested that the Republican health care bill would do more than eliminate community rating only for folks who failed to maintain continuous coverage.1 He theorized that once a separate set of rates was set up, insurers could open it up to anyone. Since this second rate schedule would be medically underwritten—i.e., based on health status—it would be very cheap for young, healthy folks. In the end, healthy consumers would all gravitate to the medically-underwritten rates while unhealthy consumers would be stuck with the higher community-rated prices. Over time, the difference between these rates would grow, which means that anyone with a pre-existing condition would end up paying much higher rates than similar healthy people.

This was an interesting suggestion, but since then I haven't heard anyone else support Fiedler's argument. Until today, that is. AHCA allows states to apply for waivers from two provisions of Obamacare. The first is the requirement to provide essential health benefits. The Congressional Budget Office describes the other waiver:

A second type of waiver would allow insurers to set premiums on the basis of an individual’s health status if the person had not demonstrated continuous coverage; that is, the waiver would eliminate the requirement for what is termed community rating for premiums charged to such people. CBO and JCT anticipate that most healthy people...would be able to choose between premiums based on their own expected health care costs (medically underwritten premiums) and premiums based on the average health care costs...(community-rated premiums).

....CBO and JCT expect that, as a consequence, the waivers in those states would have another effect: Community-rated premiums would rise over time, and people who are less healthy (including those with preexisting or newly acquired medical conditions) would ultimately be unable to purchase comprehensive nongroup health insurance at premiums comparable to those under current law, if they could purchase it at all....As a result, the nongroup markets in those states would become unstable for people with higher-than-average expected health care costs.

So the CBO expects precisely the result that Fiedler predicted. This is genuinely big news and deserves wider reporting. For all practical purposes, AHCA eliminates the requirement that insurers charge the same rates to everyone, even those with pre-existing conditions. They still can't flatly turn you down, but they can do the next best thing: make insurance so expensive for those with pre-existing conditions that most people can't afford it. That's especially harmful since the subsidies under AHCA are so skimpy.

This provision of AHCA has no direct budgetary impact, so it ought to get tossed out by the Senate parliamentarian.2 We'll have to wait and see how that turns out.

1"Community rating" is the requirement that everyone pays the same price for insurance, even if they have a pre-existing condition.

2AHCA is being passed as a reconciliation bill. These bills are only allowed to address issues that directly affect the federal budget.

Categories: Politics

Video: Trump Shoves Montenegro Prime Minister Out of the Way to Get in Front of Camera at NATO Summit

Little Green Footballs - 9 hours 45 min ago

This classless buffoon continues to embarrass the United States on the world stage, shoving Montenegro Prime Minister Duško Marković out of the way so he can get in front of the cameras at the NATO Summit meeting in Brussels today. Then he sticks his nose in the air and preens.

This has to be one of the grossest moments yet from our extremely crude so-called president.

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Categories: Politics