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News ecology

 

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By now many reading this have heard of the kerfuffle involving the German news weekly Der Speigel and award-winning reporter Claas Relotius, who created “fake news” at a world-class level.

Before he was finally caught and fired, Relotius became semi-famous as a globe-trotting writer. He was CNN’s “Journalist of the Year” in 2014.

He largely achieved this success by providing what the market wanted. He wrote stories that were shared and shared and shared again.

In this, the story of his rise and fall is a lesson in how the ecology of journalism has changed in the new environment of the internet. And the best, albeit saddest, insight into this evolution might be provided by the treatment given Juan Moreno, the reporter who caught Relotius.

A story titled “‘Jaeger’s Border’ would prove to be Relotius’ undoing,” Der Speigel reported in a come-clean, Dec. 20 expose of their former star reporter. “It was one fabricated story too many, because this time, he had a co-author, who sounded the alarm while also collecting facts to counter his fiction.”

Never mind that Moreno’s claims that Relotius was making things up were dismissed by his bosses at the start and predictably so. Relotius wrote dramatic stories that brought a lot of eyeballs to Der Spiegel’s website.

Der Spiegel had a winner at the table and no desire to know that he was playing with loaded dice. Others were just gullible.

A detail-filled story Relotius wrote about a Syrian boy fearful that he started that nation’s civil war by scribbling some graffiti on a wall in Daraa attracted major attention in Europe.

The idea that graffiti started that war has been hanging around for sometime, but Relotius took it to a new level. Who could not believe it?

Truth is sometimes stranger than fiction, and thus a fiction too strange to be fiction had to be truth, right? Who could make up this sort of story? Smitten journalism judges in Germany awarded Relotius the honor of 2018 “reporter of the year” for that country.

It was one more feather in the cap for Relotius and his bosses at Der Spiegel. While they were all celebrating, Moreno was out tracking down the “Jaeger’s Border” tale of vigilantes patrolling the U.S.-Mexican border.

It was clearly not what his bosses wanted him doing.

Good old boys and girls

No major news organization wants to out as a fraud its 33-year-old, still-rising star reporter. Moreno is lucky he didn’t get fired for unmasking Relotius.

And he was risking more than potential career destruction.  A given about journalism today is that journalists (with a few exceptions) don’t look upon each other with the same critical eye they look upon everything else.

Thus journalists who raise questions about journalism are seldom welcome anywhere. Journalism has become a club, and in a club, you don’t go around calling out the other members.

“In the dispute with and surrounding Relotius,” Der Spiegel confessed in its telltale that clearly only told part of the tale, “Moreno risked his own job, at times even desperately seeking to re-report his colleague’s claims at his own expense. Moreno would go through three or four weeks of hell because his colleagues and senior editors in Hamburg didn’t initially believe that Relotius could be nothing more than a liar.”

More than that, Moreno risked ostracization.

Der Spiegel’s recap, which has a few holes, is a pretty good summary of why so much questionable behavior in journalism gets overlooked in these times. The main reason is there aren’t many reporters as courageous as Moreno.

Most reporters aware of a story just too good to be true will let it go to avoid any potential trouble. There is no upside to digging around in stuff to find out what the real story because you’re going to be nothing but unpopular if the reality disagrees with the narrative endorsed by prior publication.

Journalists who do what Moreno did are even less popular than those internal affairs investigators portrayed in TV dramas about law enforcement.

“In late November and into early December, some at Der Spiegel even believed that Moreno was the real phony and that Relotius was the victim of slander,” Der Spiegel revealed. “Relotius skillfully parried all allegations and all of Moreno’s well-researched evidence, constantly coming up with new ways of sowing doubt, plausibly refuting accusations and twisting the truth in his favor.”

“Skillfully parried” is a subjective summary on Der Spiegel’s part. The likelihood is that little skill was required. All Relotius had to do was reinforce what his editors wanted to believe.

“Until, ultimately, his tricks stopped working,” Der Spiegel reported with no explanation of what led Relotius to reach that conclusion except that “he could no longer sleep at night for fear that he might get caught. Relotius caved in last week when a superior, Özlem Gezer, deputy head of the “Gesellschaft” section where he worked, confronted him and told him outright that she no longer believed him.”

Der Spiegel wants everyone to believe that after years of lying, Relotius finally started having sleeping problems and came clean. That’s almost has hard to believe as Relotius’s story about the Syrian boy.

See no evil

Unfortunately, if you think the  Relotiuses are rare in journalism or exist only at Breitbart or BuzzFeed or other bomb-throwing websites that have popped up in the tubes, you’re just naive.

Fake news runs wild in the tubes, though strangely few in the mainstream media called the Relotius story fake news.

Those two words are nowhere to be found in BBC, New York Times and Associated Press stories, although some USA Today copy editor did have the audacity to put the lightening-rod words in a headline above the AP story the website used.

The Washington Post mentioned fake news  only to lament how “the Spiegel controversy could also bolster those who now regularly portray reporting as ‘fake news.’ As a publication that often allows its reporters to include subjective observations in their stories, Spiegel’s anti-Trump cover pieces had been widely shared in liberal circles in recent years. 

One of the anti-Trump cover pieces to which the Post refers is a story about Fergus Falls, Minn., and the Post’s reference to “subjective observations” is a gross mischaracterization of what  Relotius did in the story.

Relotius didn’t make subjective observations; Relotius wrote fiction.

He went to Fergus Falls and wrote a story about a community nearly as fictional as the town of Lake Wobegon from the once wildly popular radio show “Prairie Home Companion” on public radio.  

A pair of Fergus Falls residents later wrote their own, hugely entertaining take down of Relotius titled “Der Spiegel journalist messed with the wrong small town.”

“What happened is beyond what I could have ever imagined: An article titled ‘Where they pray for Trump on Sundays,’ and endless pages of an insulting, if not hilarious, excuse for journalism,” Minnesota artist Michele Anderson wrote in a story published at Medium.

“Not only did Relotius’ ‘exposé’ on Fergus Falls make unrecognizable movie-like characters out of the people in my town that I interact with on a daily basis, but its very basic lack of truth and its bizarrely bleak portrayal of the place I love left a very sick, unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach.

“There are so many lies here, that my friend Jake and I had to narrow them down to top 11 most absurd lies (we couldn’t do just 10) for the purpose of this article. We’ve been working on it since the article came out in spring of 2017, but had to set it aside to attend to our lives (raising a family, managing a nonprofit organization, etc.) before coming back to it this fall, and finally wrapped things up a few weeks ago, just in time to hear today that Relotius was fired when he was exposed for fabricating many of his articles.”

The story that follows is well worth a read, and sure to leave you scratching your head as to how all the lies in Relotius’s overwritten claptrap got past Der Spiegel’s “fact checkers”:

“After three and a half hours, the bus bends from the highway to a narrow, sloping street, rolling towards a dark forest that looks like dragons live in it. At the entrance, just before the station, there is a sign with the American stars and stripes banner, which reads: “Welcome to Fergus Falls, home of damn good folks.”

Really? A bus is rolling into a small town that looks like a “dark forest?” Forget the dragon.

Is there any small town anywhere with a forest – rather than a bunch of buildings – behind its welcome sign?

Not to mention that “home of damn good folks.” Obviously no one at Der Spiegel ever listened to a Prairie Home Companion because a “home of damn good folks” sounds just a little too much like the town “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average.”

There could, of course, be a sign like Relotious describes somewhere, but here’s the thing about stories with elements that sound too good to be true:

They often sound that way because they are lies.

Evolution

That so few cared at the time the story was written is a reflection of how products evolve in response to changing environments, and the market for journalism is radically different today than it was even a decade ago.

Newspapers, magazines and broadcast outlets long lived in a limited number of defined niches over which they had a huge amount of control because of the high costs of equipment – printing presses and radio or television stations – necessary to carry news to the masses.

These news organizations made tons of money selling advertising to businesses that had limited options for broadly pitching their products. By and large, the latter businesses were uncomfortable with controversy; so journalists walked a fine line in producing a product that wasn’t so deadly boring no one would read it (though newspapers were sometimes deadly boring) or so aggressive it was daily offending advertisers.

For better or worse, the trade-offs put pressure on news organizations to, for lack of a better description, behave responsibly. Facts became the best defense against those who accused news organizations of behaving badly.

The internet blew up that world. Suddenly not only could advertisers take their message to everyman and everywoman, so too almost anyone could become a “journalist” over night.

All of a sudden businesses that had spent decades in the comfort of what were essentially closed markets found themselves in a fight for their lives in a wide open market where people get to pick from a smorgasbord of choices of what they want to read.

On the business level, news survival became a war for eyeballs.

Don’t shoot

National Lampoon saw it coming, whether the editors knew it or not, when it put a  photo of a dog with a gun at its head on the cover of the January 1973 magazine with this simple headline:

“If You Don’t Buy this Magazine, We’ll Kill This Dog”.

Then it was humor. Lampoon was mocking the dog-eat-dog world (excuse the pun) of magazine publishing. Survival then depended on subscriptions.

Survival now depends on eyeballs. News and news-oriented websites sells advertising on the basis of internet traffic. There are exceptions, but this is generally the way things work.

In this world, the more traffic a website attracts, the more money it makes. Advertisers are charged in various ways for how many people see their ad.

Enter the  Relotiuses of the world. Their bosses love them because their stories attract lots of eyeballs.

And it’s not a bad thing that stories are widely read. The reality of being a writer of any sort is that if nobody is reading what you’re writing, you’re just wasting your time.

And if a business is publishing what you’re writing and no one is reading, it is not only helping you waste your time, it is also wasting the time of a lot of other employees.

In this environment, it is pretty easy for some to overlook the abuse of the rules if the product is selling. And if someone does get caught abusing the rules, the downside isn’t that big.

In fact, the downside might be a lot of upside.

Der Spiegel’s mea culpa on the  Relotius affair has attracted a significant amount of traffic. The news organization benefited for years from his production of fake news and is now benefiting from outing his production of fake news while offering the suggestion that the latter action somehow separates Der Speigel from those kids in Macedonia benefiting from fake news.

The problem is that the kids were pushing a comic-book version of news recognizable to anyone with half a brain as fake while Der Spiegel was loading up the Rembrandt knock-off version of the news.

Even if what  Relotius wrote sounded too unbelievable to be true, it carried the imprimatur of Der Speigel, a supposedly respected news organization. That gave Relotius’s work significantly more credibility than some piece of Macedonian junk from an unheard of website appearing on Facebook.

Whether anyone in the journalism business cares anymore is hard to tell.

Close to home

KTVA News, an Anchorage television station, on the eve of the New Year ran a feature headlined “5 stories that brought us hope in 2018.”

Two of the five were basically fake news.

One was about a mutt named “Nanook, or “Nookie” for short, (who) has made a habit of accompanying hikers on the trailhead that lies just a half mile from his Girdwood home — sometimes, saving their lives,” KTVA says.

The evidence to support this conclusion. A young woman who fell in Eagle River last summer and believes Nookie pulled her out and saved her life. The woman is large. Nookie is small.

There were no eye witnesses to the incident. Merely the size difference between the dog and the woman make the story questionable. That she believes Nookie saved her life means only that she believes.

Nookie’s owner has pushed the story of his heroic dog at every opportunity, however, and some journalists have bought it the way the editors of Der Speigel bought Relotius’s reporting.

“Swift said Nookie saved another hiker, a little girl hiking Crow Pass Trail with her family, from the same river crossing where Milling fell,”KTVA reported “Swife (sic) also got a phone call from a woman saying that Nookie saved her friend who was caught in an avalanche a few years ago.”

The names of any of these people? Non-existent.

The likelihood of a “little girl” hiking Cross Pass Trail with her family? Low.

Crow Pass is a challenging 23-mile scramble through the Chugach Mountains. The ford on the glacial Eagle River is about halfway along the route. Chugach State Park has a video of some of the trail and the river crossing. 

Watch it yourself and decide how many parents would take a “little girl” on this sort of adventure. A few maybe. And how many of them would do so unprepared to rescue the “little girl” themselves instead of hoping for somebody’s stray dog to come along?

The little girl story is as believable as a teenager’s graffiti sparking the Syrian civil war, but some reporters – like some people – believe what they want to believe instead of limiting themselves to the story the facts will support.

The second story is even more fake, if that is possible.

It recounts how Iditarod Trail Sled Dog musher “Scott Janssen saved his friend and fellow musher.”

But Janssen didn’t save anyone. He found friend Jim Lanier in trouble in a snowstorm and hung around with him until they both ended up in trouble. Both of them were then saved by Iditarod officials and volunteers.

“Due to frostbite Janssen couldn’t dial his wife’s number on the satellite phone,” the KTVA story claims. It comes complete with a video of Janssen telling his tale. He waves his hands around. There are no black spots, which is the color skin turns after being frostbitten.

“…Both men’s eyes started to cloud over, as their corneas started to freeze,” the story says. “Frostbite and hypothermia were setting in.”

And yet, after their rescue, neither man needed medical treatment. All KTVA left out was a summary of that miracle.

But the Nookie story and the Janssen story appeared to have trafficked well the first time around, and thus there is no good reason not to bring them back for a New Year’s replay.

Relotius might be journalistic outlier, but only to the extent that he was presented the opportunity to bend the rules to the extreme in a business where bending the rules seems to becoming ever more the norm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

evolutonary biology

enlightenment, antonym

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114 replies »

  1. What happened to ” just the facts mamm”. I don’t mind a journoceleb presenting a true fact then spinning it whatever way he/she wants. I do care that said factoid is legitimate.
    That’s why they have fiction or non-fiction book classifications. If journalists lie like a dog then they should be professionally shunned. The truth shall set you free, but it doesn’t get the ratings that result in big bucks. It’s sad indeed that honor and integrity are not a fundamental journalistic creed.
    If pulp fiction propoganda is allowed to flourish, the public will eventually not believe anyone. A democracy thrives on factual discourse that is germane to everyday life. The public deserves nothing less.

    PS : Craig you are a top notch journalist by the way….

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  2. Journalism has always been fake news, since man invented the written word much if not most has been fake news. There have been journalists who have reported the real news, but as Craig pointed out they are usually shunned by their brethren for sharing the truth. It is human nature to embellish and stretch the truth. Look at the comment section here, some go far as to say they didn’t say what they said even though it is written in black and white in their previous comment.

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  3. Best quote of the year so far by anyone leaving a comment at this site: “these yahoos are not interested in definitions-if they were they would use them” from a guy who refuses to accept the definition of words, our own Bill Yankee!

    Thanks for the laugh Bill, you’re the best at using unintended irony for comedic effect.

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    • I was wondering when you’d show up Steve-O. While I have no idea of what you speak, you’ll probably have an answer to the question that seems to have everyone up in arms?
      Your turn.

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      • I’m surprised you have no idea of what I speak, I was lead to believe that remembering all of the comments from previous posts “should pose no problem for a “reader and thinker”…Heheh!”

        Heheh!, indeed Bill, Heheh!

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      • Heheh! Steve-O you seem to want to deal in mystery.
        Did you have an answer to the question or did you want to just screw around?

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      • Which question is that Bill? You want my opinion on how many genders/sexes there are? Will my opinion solve that great mystery for you? I don’t care how many genders/sexes you think there are, nor do I care what anybody else who comments on this site thinks about the subject.

        I’ve got a question for you Bill, do you believe in the definition of words or do you not?

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      • Steve-O,
        The question is what gender do hermaphrodites belong to? Doesn’t require you to determine number of genders or sexes there are, either.
        Once a definition has been determined, then that is to be believed IMO.

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      • Bill,
        I believe the answer to your question is now called “Intersex”.
        “Intersex people are born with any of several variations in sex characteristics including chromosomes, gonads, sex hormones, or genitals that, according to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, do not fit the typical definitions for male or female bodies”

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersex

        Liked by 1 person

      • You know Steve, I just don’t think that the crazies on here will accept a wikipedia definition. Just a feeling but remember here that some think these folks are “freaks of nature” and another thinks they are diseased.
        Anyway, as I understand it the definition (Webster) has changed over the years from one where gender/sex were synonyms to now where they are not. Also, there is the situation of “gender identity” where the feelings of otherwise normal sexual beings can be other than their sexual orientation. This is a problem for many and I’ve avoided this situation by only dealing with hermaphrodites where the sexuality is clearly not normal.
        Anyway, the subject is somewhat complex and I suspect that everyone on here has learned much that they didn’t know before today. I hope they learn more as this is coming down the pike, in spades.

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  4. Craig, your comment forum has turned into a dick-swinging contest. Really, nobody wants to see it.
    However they are entertaining and probitive at times so they should not be prohibited.
    Should there be sub-categories in Comments?
    How hard would that be?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sure you can see that the way Craig’s comment section is layed out allowing for certain replies following specific comments is essentially already a sort-of “sub-category.”
      And this is not a “dick-swinging” contest, for the most part, but a simple case of flushing out the ideology about gender/sex that has permeated some minds (even readers and thinkers). When you say “nobody wants to see it” you are fairly obviously speaking for yourself-is that because you also won’t answer the question about which gender do hermaphrodites belong?
      Go ahead and swing your dick on here if you’ve got one!

      Liked by 1 person

      • As you simplified your question Umm I’ve got your answer bill . They are whichever gender the hormones tell their brain to be . Even though they have both parts . Pretty weird . I hope it’s not from some form of polution / endocrine disruption.

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      • Opinion, that’s an interesting concept and probably correct for those who’ve reached puberty. And makes some sense with NYC allowing for the gender to change from original (at birth). This site suggests that approximately 50% of them menstruate and that could be a hint at how they might feel at that time: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/medicine-and-dentistry/true-hermaphroditism
        What gender would the parents categorize them at birth? Pretty tough call IMO! Frankly, the idea of one or the other is absurd.
        I’ve heard that one way of looking at it is that sex is what’s between your legs and gender is what’s between your ears. If this holds up, then hermaphrodites will be much involved in it IMO.

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      • Yep bill . You are on right track and I’ve studied it to inadequate to shine much light . Crazy hard for me to comprehend at this point.

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      • Bill, hermaphrodites are maybe a separate “gender” as you argue. But they are a variant in the genome.Perhaps soon there will be an evolution where women do not need men to procreate.
        Oh wait – its already happened!

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      • Bill, what is it that you want? A hermaphrodite may be subject to discrimination which we all agree is wrong. Or is it that some states are changing their drivers license to neutral gender identification and that is what you are seeking?

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      • Chris, you’ll have to clarify your meaning “but they are a variant in the genome.” It is these variants that make up all of us.
        I suspect the biological definition of gender will accommodate hermaphrodites fairly easily-it will take some doing to get the crazies who talk “freaks of nature” to accept the science, however.

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      • Chris, all I’ve been seeking here is to expose the “bullshit” that has been posted by several on here that all humans belong to only two genders. Pretty simple. And those ideologues still haven’t attempted to answer my question-they are spooked.
        The states will take care of their situations and there will be a few states that will drag it out but eventually the science will overwhelm all of the bigots IMO. The definition of gender has changed, due to increased knowledge, but as evident by several postings on here it’s easy to see that some “readers and thinkers” aren’t buying it.

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      • Bill, a hermaphrodites is born of a woman amd a man. So, that means there can only be 2 genders, man or a woman. Anything inbetween is a result of mutation or “a genuine freak of nature”. So, since this has been bugging you for days here is your answer so there is no confusion amd you give it a rest.

        There are no documented cases in which both types of gonadal tissue function. So, you are either predominately a male with a non-working “vagina” or a female with a non-working penis. So, not sure how hard this is to understand?

        Although fertility is possible in true hermaphrodites, there has yet to be a documented case where both gonadal tissues function, contrary to the misconception that hermaphrodites can impregnate themselves.

        So, for you to say hermaphrodites have both functioning gonadal tissue which makes them something other than a boy or a girl is not true.

        You are just a product of the PC era. 57, 63, 100 different genders. Sheesh!

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      • Bryan, what a crock!
        What is a true hermaphrodite as opposed to say a false one?? And where on here or anywhere did I say anything about hermaphrodites having both functioning gonad tissue.
        So what is your answer, besides the bullchit? In between, mutation, or genuine freak of nature??
        Is that your final answer? Which are you going to put on that birth certificate?
        If your having trouble with the gender thing, how about you tell us which sex is that individual? Perhaps you’d like to run some tests to see if a true hermaphrodite? Yes that’s it, we’ll want to know if there could have been some mutation or “freak of nature?”
        You’ll want to run this by Mongo who considers them diseased! Sheesh indeed!

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      • Damn Bill, the answer is right in front of you and you still cannot see it. Enough of this nonsense. Let’s put “Alien” on the birth certificate. Next story.

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      • Thanks Craig & Bill for being here! Wishing you and your family a Happy New Year!
        On a another note:
        I finally agree with Trump on two decisions, pull our troops out of Syria and Afghanistan. On the latter: 18 years, countless US soldier’s lives, up to now $48 billion dollars per year and will be no difference made, when we finally leave.
        The defense contractors have been making some very good coin, they do not want it to stop. What a total waste of American tax payer money. For what?

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  5. Steve (one of your sources) – The Washington Post has a guest contributor who ordered the deaths of 26 journalists in Yemen.

    The Islamist contributor Mohammed al-Houthi likes to carry an AK47 with him even to interviews.

    Mohammed al-Houthi was recently filmed launching a shoulder-fired missile while chanting “Death to Israel!… Death to America!”

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    • Bryan,
      Do you feel the U.S. and coalition force’s bombing campagains that have leveled cities throughout the countries of Pakistan, Afganistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen is responsible (at all) for how many radical Muslims now feel extreme hatred against America?
      Hint: you may wish to watch some of Jim Foley’s videos on Global Post to see the countless injured women and children along with rubble torn communities…
      What ever happened to Diplomacy?

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      • Steve, you bring up a good point. I can tell you first hand the great lengths the USA has gone to to reduce collateral damage. To the point of endangering American lives, as pathetic as that sounds. Now you want to talk about the destructive forces of islam throughout the muslim world I am all ears. The mayhem, murder, and destruction by the Death Cult from Hell is unimaginable. The USA uses precision guided weapons generally and only after confirming again and again that a target is valid. We also paid the Iraqis .20/gal for every gallon of gas we used. Pretty damn generous if you ask me. So, who should these “peaceful” muslim be embracing? Those trying to bring peace or those who live and destroy in the Stone Age?

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      • Steve I didn’t watch but you hit nail on head . To my mind the battles there are about money and chaos . How would we feel if someone was in our country bombing ? Call me paranoid but I think it’s part of big money plan to cause chaos and make money. Equipment insurance reconstruction banking loans military equipment ect . I blame bushes Obama’s Hilary and mitt Romney relatives and friends . Trump has made step in right direction. Get the heck out . It’s unwinable even if enemies are defeated because the method used is immoral and will leave emotional residue on survivors. Not counting our own nation casualties. Evil people have started and continue these wars . Cheney Rumsfeld ect . I pray like hell trump can get us out . Watching his enemies even supposed friends stymie his each good effort leaves me with little hope . Dang politicians and globalist war mongers retired Generals don’t want it to stop . I say every one should support Trumps efforts and bring our troops home . Every one work together get them home . Bombs are to indiscriminate. Horrible. I agree Steve diplomacy!!!!!! Diplomacy!!!!

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      • Diversity can be good . Our nation is not supposed to make laws messing with peoples religion so why are we demonizing a religion? Makes no sense . Muhajeen / muslims were on our side in Korean War . My dad says they were loyal hard fighters and friends . Died alongside Americans. I wasn’t there but that’s what I’m told . Let’s all come together. There is a concerted effort by big money to divide us and make us hate each other . It makes common men weak to be divided which allows extreme monied or unethical people to take advantage of lack of organization and makes common man barely able to focus on survival. Call me paranoid. Whether it’s true I don’t know but it’s same effect. I say come together and work together as friends . I believe in borders but I also believe in freedom and not enforcing our ideals on a foreign culture that we don’t fully understand.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Opinion, not sure if you’ve run across this site but I think you would find some good material there: http://www.antiwar.com/
        The editor-at-large there Justin Raimondo has been at its helm for a long time but is experiencing health issues. You will recognize several contributors there and they also welcome comments.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Opinion there is a concerted effort by ISIS, al Queada and devote Muslims in general to rid the world of opposing religions. If you know the Koran, you would know this to be much true. Muslims fought with the Americans in Korea? Huh? Of course it is politically correct to makes excuses for the death cult but, there is no excuse for their barbaric behavior over the last 2,000yrs.

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      • Opinion,
        To bring this all back to the current state of “fake news”…
        You can see why 80 journalists were captured, tortured and imprisoned in Syria alone since the U.S. started dropping bombs…
        57 out of 80 were released.
        Only 1 American survived through escape.
        All other American and British reporters were killed (Brutally)…
        Ask yourself, Who really is afraid that these reporters will bring the truth back to America and UK viewers?
        It is NOT the rebel forces fighting against the Assad regime.
        When the other journalists who were held hostage with Jim Foley got released, they all said that the worst of their captors ALL spoke with an English (British) accent.
        They labeled them “the Beatles” after the British Rock band?
        Years later we are finding out that these ISIL Muslims came from London?
        So, these extremists came to Syria AFTER the U.S. forces started their bombing campagain…to fight the U.S. NOT the Insurgency.
        So these Proxy Wars are leading to the world chaos and destruction that you spoke of.
        I highly recommend the book “The Shock Doctrine” (the rise of disaster capitalism) by Naomi Klein as I also reccomend Jim Foley’s journalistic work.
        His documentary by HBO has touched me deeply…
        May his soul RIP…
        Truley a lost brother to the fight of honest reporting!

        “Here’s some of James Foley’s finest reporting for GlobalPost”
        https://www.pri.org/stories/2014-08-20/heres-some-james-foleys-finest-reporting-globalpost

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      • Steve, you left out all the indiscriminate and direct bombing of journalists by the Russians. They still believe in the carpet bombing approach. ISIS had a field day as well targeting journalists. I assume you left all this out by accident and weren’t blaming the USA/UK solely?

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      • So Bryan, you are way way to smart to bring into the argument by saying there is no excuse for their barbaric 2000 year behavior. I know you have studied extreme amount of history. Almost All religions have been a part and excuse for massive killings and terrible behavior. None of them have a viable excuse. You knew that . You can’t make Muslims appear to be the bad ones ! They are being used . Anyone who can see know s this . Seeing is using more than eyes . It’s using mind . I followed your many many statements and you are very smart and quick . So don’t tarnish yourself when you know the real facts . Money or hate isn’t worth it . Just don’t go there . It’s been awhile since I read Koran and should read more . Screw politically correct! Knowledge is tops !i remember reading part of Koran and it basically says really questionable things but it makes definite allowances for written religions . It’s all part of an abrahamic beginning. Koran recognizes Jesus . So don’t try to smear them . An educated religious scholar will put you to shame . (Not me ) now I have carefully read Christian bible and nowhere in Christ’s words does it say bomb thy enimies and get revenge. In fact it says opposite . Love your enemies! Forgive them a thousand plus times . So anyone who uses religion as a scape goat to divide various peoples does not follow Christian intent . I don’t think Christianity is completely reasonable. A person must stand up and defend their friends country and families but to a certain degree we are a Christian idealist nation and should never attack and treat other nations poorly without true just cause.Bryan you and I are basically on same side of fence ideologically. So don’t smear your honor by fighting for the wrong side . The wrong side is the side of hate intolerance and destruction. This isn’t about political correctness it’s about facts and killing. Yeah I know extremist Muslim dogma . Eventually there will be a balance for them . If you are religious then let god judge them . I’m not technically religious but I do recognize Christ’s teachings are needed for human and earths survival. I say as good Americans judge each person on his individual merit and treat him accordingly. Only a wasteful fool judges a whole group as one. Sure I said more than I should but Bryan you are a good person and I would prefer you spread good ideas .

        Liked by 1 person

      • Opinion, fair enough and I always appreciate your responses. What you say is true about Christianity in the past. But, it has evolved past most of the violence and is considered to be a religion of peace in todays civilized society. I have seen collective efforts in a lot of the Middle East to strap fake bombs and real ones to children and parade them around with pride. I saw a mother once who said “I regret I do not have more sons to martyr”. Her son was a suicide bomber. Not to mention the thousands who have had their heads cut off. One religions preaches killing Christians to enter into heaven with 72 virgins and one preaches peace and tolerance. There is no misunderstanding in this. I am not talking about the phony muslim down the street who is comfortable in Western culture or clothing. I am talking about the devote hyocrite who preaches islam but, sends brainwashed young men to death in their place. These are not “bad apples”. These are the bushell of apples. The “bad apples” are the good minority you are trying to defend.

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      • Bryan,
        Yes…Russian Journalists are also being killed (both at home and abroad).
        My point above was not to blame the U.S. (although they did almost nothing to free captured reporters in Syria…only 1 failed military mission in over 2 years)…
        My point is that ISIL/ISIS did not exist until the U.S. and UK forces entered Syria around 2011 and started bombing with F16 and Drones…
        Foley’s capture in 2012 put them on the map.
        The “Assassin” who killed journalists Jim Foley, Austin Tice, Steven Sotloff, and Peter Kassig was British!
        Came from London with his radical thug Islamic friends….did NOT arrive from the middle east.
        Currently ISIS is seeing it’s greatest surge from within Russia and several former countries of the Soviet Union?
        If the Americans wished to stop Assad’s reign of terror on his people they would bomb him…not the getthos with “rebel fighters” and innocent civilians.
        The banksters want despotic regimes in place where there is oil in the middle east, hence the tight alliance with Saudi Regimes.
        “Official estimates from the Russian Federation alone suggest that 2,400 Russians had joined the Islamic State by September 2015, compared to more than 800 in June 2014.”
        “The majority of fighters come from the North Caucasus — Chechnya and Dagestan — with a smaller but still significant number from Azerbaijan and Georgia,” the TSG report stated.
        So you see how this is truley a “Proxy War” involving Muslims from many nations around the Globe.

        https://www.cnbc.com/2015/12/09/russian-fighters-are-joining-isis-in-record-numbers.html

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      • Steve, your response is misleading.. Those Northern Caucasus are predominantly Muslim. Thus “so many” Russians are leaving to fight. Lets not forget the Chechen War. The USA bombed (with precision strikes) Syrian ghettos because they were ISIS strongholds. ISIS held real estate through fear and intimidation. Not sure it matters when ISIS was formed. They are just another group in a long line of radicals calling for a Calliphate. To understand the Middle East one has to go back almost 2,000 years. Bush, Clinton, or Obama mean nothing in the scheme of things. I venture to say corruption, $$$, and then religion have played a roll in the last 2,000 years.

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      • Bryan,
        It is very important to understand ISIS since we are way more at risk to terrorism from this group.
        Brits, Aussies are joining this group and have passports which could allow them pretty free access into America.
        This is way different from past radical groups in the middle east.
        “It’s not just about one brutal murderer, Westmacott said. British intelligence estimates that about 500 Britons have joined ISIS, meaning they have the means to return to Britain or fly to America with few hindrances.”
        “It is a threat to our citizens,” Westmacott said.
        “many are just ‘vacationers’ for Jihad, going to Syria over school breaks or holidays for the thrill of adventure and a semblance of glory, and returning to tolerably easy but somewhat soulless lives in the West, driving taxis, cooking in fast food joints, going to computer classes, or whatever.”
        And this behavior was not seen until the U.S. entered the bombing campagain in Syria around 2011.

        https://www.thedailybeast.com/isis-hip-hop-jihadists-and-the-man-who-killed-james-foley

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      • Steve, you remember the 9/11 terrorists in US flight schools? How about the 1st WTC bombing? How about all the terrorist attacks in the 80’s, 90’s? You act like terrorists coming and going is something new or ISIS has something over al Queada. Different name, same thugs.

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      • Bryan,
        How is it that 7 of the supposed “Saudi” hijackers of the planes on 9-11 are reported to still be alive and free?
        “The world’s media has reported that many of the so-called hijackers “fingered” by the FBI are still alive.”

        http://911research.wtc7.net/mirrors/guardian2/september-eleven/hijackers-alive.htm

        RT.com just had a story yesterday that “hackers” have data that explains 9-11 further and that they are looking for money from “global insurance carriers”?
        It looks like the owner of the world trade center had a hefty “terrorism” policy on the buildings before they collapsed.
        (Nearly $3 Billion)
        And let’s not forget those 3 buildings (one of which was never hit by planes) were the first high rises in the world to collapse from planes or fire?
        I believe the Empire State Building was even hit by a bomber in the fog once and is still standing today?

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      • It mass insanity as well as science/reality denial to say their are more than 2 sexes. There is Male and Female PERIOD!

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      • NYC is run by a bunch of Insane Radical Left Ideologues, the fact that they issue BC’s to multiple “genders” is not proof of anything other than it is political nonsense and the politicians and apparatchiks are part of this Cult of Insanity.

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      • OK Burt, then perhaps you will weigh in on what gender is an individual born with both male and female genitals?
        While your opinion will certainly not be any scientific “proof”, it will surely tell us just how full of chit you are.

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      • Burt, Just let ole Bill vent. He uses FB and they say there are 57 genders, so it must be true. I explained it all to him in another thread and he became a bit confused from the explanation.

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      • Yessir Burt and Bryan, two posters on her that like to shoot from the lip, are missing in action when asked a simple question.
        It’s really quite simple but, for some reason, you both have stage fright here. Heheh!
        While you both seem to think there are only two genders (although you both seem to be confusing gender with sex) neither of you can place a simple category into one of your (assumed) two genders.
        Maybe if you both close your eyes and stamp your feet three times that “category” (folks born with both genitals) will disappear.

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      • Yes despite the rantings of an Insane Radical Left and their Cult of Insanity; science shows that there are only 2 sexes/genders. To know which one you are Bill, the next time you drop your pants take a look to see what is down in your crotch area, you will only have 2 choices. Saying there are 3 or 300 is just psychological illness and denial of reality.

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      • Oh for Pete’s sake Burt, just answer the frigging question! What makes you think my gender has anything to do with the question? Do you think muddying the water here makes you sound like you have a brain? Next you’ll be suggesting you know something about science. You (and Bryan) can only pussyfoot around here so long without it showing that you got nothing.
        Nothing wrong with saying you don’t know, if you are having an issue (perhaps a paradox) here.

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      • You suffer from a serious case of Reality Disorder Syndrome; but you have a lot of company in Universities esp in the worthless “Social Sciences”. Outside of the Scientology Cult I’ve never seen a more insane Cult. Biology is Biology no matter what deranged insane people try to claim with endless chattering of demonic insanity.

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      • It would be laughable to see the ranting of this Cult like group; except they are out to destroy anyone that doesn’t buy into to their insanity. It’s more like the Red Guard of Mao’s than any other historical group.

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      • Boy, now we’ve go Mongo climbing aboard with, no answer to the question, but a load of “gibberish” about “cults.”
        Perhaps those Scientologists are a separate “gender,” Mongo? Did you look inside your pants and find a Scientologist like suggested by Burt?
        Will you characters stoop to no end to avoid just answering that simple question?

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      • It’s an easy answer I already gave it. Biology and genetic studies prove the reality that there are only TWO SEXES/Genders. The belief in 57 or 600 or 600000000 is simply Delusion, Denial, and Deceit. There now I’m done arguing with the mentally insane.

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      • Bill any possibility of redirecting conversation to topic of article. News- reporting- truth and accuracy while reporting.)I think that’s far more important for our current world / national situation than the divisive discussion about gender that has no easy conclusion. I know you like to press peoples buttons but perhaps during a gender article would be more productive. What people identify as is their own personal business. Regardless of what’s visually biological. It’s far more complicated than what’s in pants apparently. Don’t ask me why as my study of it is inadequate yet it’s a known fact people can’t change how they feel about it unless they get hormone therapy. So let’s drop it and discuss a solvable concern . The lies and inaccurate news reporting that misleads people by accident and on purpose. Something that is of the greatest danger to democracy. Poorly informed voters and misinformed public. The danger that represents to our nation and the world.

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      • Opinion: Except you’ve already partially bought into the Mass Brain Washing of the pseudo-science that a person can select their gender and even make it up by whatever they decide to “Feel”. And this Brain Washing was through the media, which is actively trying to peddle this dribble as “Science”. When it is really nonsensical insanity.

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      • You happen to be full of chit, Burt.
        Even if your opinion about only two sexes (and lately genders) is true (it isn’t) you’ve not answered my question. Hint: it has nothing to do with believing in say 57 genders, either. It’s noted that you’ve failed to show your “biology and genetic studies” that you refer to-were those listed in Time Magazine?

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      • Boy Opinion, for a minute there I thought you were going to answer my question. I do think that you are one who is able to change their mind when the facts change (we can excuse a few others on here).
        Sorry for getting afield here but due to Bryan’s refusing to answer in the previous article I brought it up again. This should pose no problem for a “reader and thinker” but the bigots on here insist on digging in. Heheh!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Bill I don’t post links . My suggestion to you is ,post links for them to veiw . A Dictionary definition – old one and Wikipedia. Let them feel their way to a conclusion they want to identify with : ) Throw in a science article or two and hope for best . My opinion on bathrooms is more certain. Visual Biological division and labeling. Bathrooms are built for convenience of use . Certain parts for certain appliances. Also it’s safer for children and biological functional women. Pretty clear . Other than that you can’t change a gender identity as it’s controlled by hormones and the brain ,apparently. According to science . Also it doesn’t matter anyway. It’s a worthless discussion. As the only thing that matters are how people treat each other . I mean who gives a rats ass what someone calls themselves. As long as they treat each other with respect. What Someone calls themselves only effects themselves so it’s stupid to try and force someone to relabel themselves. Bathroom functions ect is another subject. It’s about function and safety.

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      • First off, sex and gender are the same thing. They are just different words that mean the same thing. The idea that gender is a social construct and somehow separate and divorced from biology is utter nonsense invented by some Marxist ‘academic’ to advance his own agenda. In reality, it boils down to the fact there are only two genders and these are ‘male’ and ‘female.’

        In recent years, there has been an argument advanced that genetic sexual abnormalities that produce humans that have been said to be neither male nor female or sometimes both male and female constitute a distinct sex or gender of its own. The prevalence of people with these disorders is tiny and statistically insignificant. They are considered statistical outliers and therefore are not indicators of the existence of genders outside male/female dichotomy. The fact that all of these disorders is also accompanied by other abnormalities and/or genetic illnesses reinforces the fact that they are genetic aberrations and not a normal biological sex.

        What is a social construct are the 63 or more made up ‘genders’ we see being bandied about that on even superficial examination amount to little more than fetishes. Gender as a social construct along with the notions of gender identity and gender expression are complete fictions that exist only in the fevered minds of ‘gender studies’ activists. There is no basis for them in reality whatever.

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      • you’re right that they are outliers, but this is a nation of outliers founded on the idea of tolerance.

        we seem to have lost touch with some of that. on all sides of the political spectrum.

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      • Opinion, these yahoos are not interested in definitions-if they were they would use them. They only have their ideology that they refuse to question. They won’t answer my question because their answer doesn’t fit in with their thinking (in fact it destroys it). They cling to their belief that sex and gender are the same thing but even that doesn’t allow them to answer that simple question about people having both sex organs.
        The bathroom situation has nothing to do with this answer, either but there are actual incidences where a hermaphrodite has been subjected to school bathroom issues and it is real, no question about it. We can only imagine how this would be handled if it were in our own community. Safety may be used but my money would be on mostly “fake news” with the intent to instill fear, based on “safety.”
        And we aren’t even covering that child with a “scientologist” in their pants.

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      • Here ya go Bill. Haha. What you descibe or want answers to would be considered freaks of nature. Then there is the mental disorder crowd who change their “genders” daily. There are only 2 genders and certainly not 63. Living within the liberal mind must be a “freak show”. A confusing, twisted mess..Sorry Craig, Bill carried this nonsense from another thread.
        https://apath.org/63-genders/

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      • Well Bryan, your “freaks of nature” is from what part of your brain (that part in your pants)? Are you saying that’s a scientific determination? Of course not, just your opinion.
        So why can’t you place that person into one of your two genders (which one)?? Do you not consider the person human? You say “freak” and I can just imagine your getting involved in school issues were a hermaphrodite to attend a school around you.
        Talk about “fake news!”

        Liked by 1 person

      • The question is what separates gender from sex. The answer, is absolutely nothing. Gender simply comes from the ancient Greek stem gen-, which means produce. Therefore, it can be argued that gender means one’s role in the reproductive system. The LGBTQIA+Pedo radicals have hijacked this term and redefined it based on how one ‘feels’. Furthermore, their simple redefinition is inadequate. Simply asserting they are correct and then throwing in the phrase ‘educate yourself and screaming obscenities does not in fact make them correct.
        The multiple gender argument is manifestly evident to be false; yet people believe it either out of fear of the authority (or media), brain washing/indoctrination, or a genuine belief against reality ( which is a mental illness.
        .There are genetically 2 genders, that’s it.. Every varying degree of masculinity and femininity isn’t a new gender. Also for the “intersex” argument, if someone was born without legs, that doesn’t prove that humans aren’t bipedal, so why would intersex people prove the non binary genders exist? They are still determined as male or female depending on chromosomes. These people suffer from a birth defect, and nothing else. There is no scientific evidence to prove that there are more than 2 genders. It is all made up pseudo science by extreme radical leftest to push a perverted social construct whose real goal ultimately is to destroy the established order so they can remake to fit their demoniacally inspired perverse ideas. In short it is a lie straight from the pits of hell.

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      • So Mongo, did you make up that gibberish on your own or did you have some help. Further, what is the answer to my question? Which gender do those hermaphrodites belong??
        Frankly I’m not sure why you need to bring intersex into the conversation but you are the expert on your opinion-doesn’t make it so Mongo. I’m fairly sure that hermaphrodites have been a problem for those wanting to categorize them forever and hardly due to someone (Bolsheviks?) worrying about how they “feel.”
        So again, which gender to hermaphrodites belong?

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      • Hermaphroditism is a very rare disease, not a gender. Using this rare disease to justify somehow the notion of there are more than 2 sexes in the Human genome is actually quite retarded and the very definition of anti-science/anti-intellectualism. You accuse anyone who acknowledges the manifest truth of nature/facts/reality as an ideologue, which is laughable because the only ideologues are those mindlessly chattering away about GENDERISM.

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      • I’m sure Bill won’t watch this; but for those who are after the truth Dr. Cretella does a bang up job.

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      • Boy Mongo that bit about hermaphroditism being a disease is almost as good as Bryan’s “freaks of nature!” I will agree that it is rare.
        When I spoke of those who refuse to buy into the “fact” that the definition of gender has changed I did mean you. Science is funny that way with changes made to accommodate the changing facts.
        You go ahead and keep on with the earth is flat idea and the rest of us will do just fine. By the way, which gender do those rare hermaphrodites belong? Remember here we aren’t talking sex, anymore.

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      • From: https://www.rightdiagnosis.com/h/hermaphroditism/causes.htm

        There are different forms of hermaphroditism, or intersex that have multiple causes. Some cases are due to chromosome defects, whereas others are related to abnormal amounts of the sex hormones due to an underlying disease (e.g., ovarian tumor that leads to male hormone production during pregnancy). Some underlying diseases (e.g., congenital adrenal hyperplasia) are caused by inherited gene mutations.

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      • Mongo, here is something about your Dr. in your video: “The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) is a socially conservative advocacy group of pediatricians and other healthcare professionals in the United States. … ACPeds has been listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center for “pushing anti-LGBT junk science”.”
        Now why would anyone want to watch such horsechit?

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      • You are an INSANE IDEOLOGUE who obviously has no interest in reality. You just crank out BS as you’ve been programmed, no matter the facts given to you. Pathetic really. You are a fine example of an NPC.

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      • Well Bryan, that’s what you said in your earlier posting on a previous article-then you’ve altered it several times today and finally “alien” it is.
        You’ve showed us no biological science and think you can inundate us with made-up bullchit. There is no science that refers to hermaphroditism as a freak of nature. And you somehow believe that because you think they don’t have both gonad tissue functional that this makes a difference? Well, the science deals with hermaphroditism in other animals that do have both functional gonad tissues. So………………how would this have made a difference in your conclusion? I’m curious.
        Anyway, you’ve said there are only two genders (your opinion without any back-up) but you won’t/can’t say which gender gets those hermaphrodites. Just that they must belong to one or the other (I guess) but which one? At birth or at puberty?? I gave you a hint that it could have something to do with which ones menstruate but that certainly couldn’t be determined at birth. So we’ll just go with “alien” at birth? This is unacceptable.
        By the way, Mongo has a video that I’m sure you’ll enjoy.

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      • Mongo has some good points to consider. A quality educated scientist is needed or extreme researchers. To determine bills question. The sex thing is pretty complicated. Needs carefully analyze. Not as simple as I first thought. Particularly it needs documentation who is pushing the multi sex concept . Not that it’s wrong but Mongo mentions destruction of social order and that’s a concern especially as bill mentioned southern poverty law . Southern poverty law is a known by many ,dishonest organization . It certainly has no ground to stand when it labels another organization a hate group. Southern poverty law has very sketchy financial backers . Look it up . I’m not saying mongo is all correct as I’m to un knowledgeable to make determination or even solid opinion on the science of it all . Yet he does bring up valid points to consider.

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  6. I only stop by to see how the Dull Men’s Club is doing these daz. Everyone seems to be just as static as always. Things are good! Keep on keepin’ on with hashing the rehash.

    I still don’t quite get the ardhon Medred has about his chosen journamalism trade, though. Why go on so about its (in his eyes) lacking? There is no ‘fix’ to that and there never will be until the consumer becomes more literate. And the only thing that will lead to that is the actual need to do so. Blow up your tee vee, plant a little garden try to find…

    Oh! I’m Especially fond of Opinion’s blow jobs even though I’m not beneficiary.

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    • Stinky felon I mean monk felon/ oh whatever. You are such a doll . Sorry I’ve been neglecting you . Will that make you feel more included?

      Like

  7. Is there any small town anywhere with a forest – rather than a bunch of buildings – behind its welcome sign?
    Fairbanks,coming into from he south on he Parks.

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  8. Craig,
    You continue to bring up the good point of calling out fake news stories, yet I am concerned why so many remaining “journalists” continue to slip into this realm?
    Is it out of fear for covering the truth?
    You said:
    “Thus journalists who raise questions about journalism are seldom welcome anywhere. Journalism has become a club, and in a club, you don’t go around calling out the other members.”
    Well what about the journalists who dare to question a country’s response to war or worse it’s empowered fascist leader?
    I am thinking of U.S. journalists Marie Colvin and James Foley who were killed in Syria for attempting to report the truth….
    Maybe that is why the above mentioned fellow turned to graffiti for his story line in Syria?
    2018 has been a bad year for journalists all over the world.
    “In a year-end report, CPJ counted 53 journalists killed between Jan. 1 and Dec. 14, including 34 targeted in reprisal for their work — nearly double the 18 such murders it recorded in 2017. Reporters Without Borders, another independent group, counted 63 professional journalists killed”
    I guess sticking to wildlife, fake news and cooling trends is your safest path forward.
    I wish you a safe 2019!

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/dozens-of-journalists-were-murdered-in-2018-this-is-a-crisis-of-press-freedom/2018/12/30/eab8ad2e-092d-11e9-88e3-989a3e456820_story.html?utm_term=.50381435560e

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    • Steve, “journalists” are not journalists anymore. They are ideologues from the moment they step foot on campus to parroting the party narrative. Paid liars with the power to distort, sway, or ommit. The worst of mankind – sleezy, slimy, and incestuous.
      So, of course – “Thus journalists who raise questions about journalism are seldom welcome anywhere.”

      Like

      • You’re equating journalists in safe Western countries creating political news to support their employers preferred narratives and drive their own personal brands and success with actual war correspondents targeted by actual despots?

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      • “Typically journalists are not murdered in the United States,” said Courtney Radsch, the advocacy director for the Committee to Protect Journalists. “Typically they are not murdered in Western Europe. Yet we have seen it this year in both — which were previously considered bastions of press freedom — that journalists are being murdered and that there is a parallel of anti-press rhetoric happening.”

        NYT 10-11-2018

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      • Steve, more whiney nonsense from the NYT’s trying to draw parellels between the anti-American/Trump press and Trump’s/America’s anti-press rhetoric and a few “journalists” who got whacked. What – journalists are exempt from getting whacked? News to me (excuse the pun). So glad Trump calls them on their lying BS.

        Like

      • Watch the “news” run cover for Pelosi, Schumer, and the rest of the Democrats who were against illegals coming across the border a few years ago and are now for it. Pathetic hypocrits.

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      • Speaking of “lying BS” Bryan, we are still waiting for you (the resident expert on gender) to clarify your thinking on the gender of folks having both male and female genitals.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I didn’t miss your response and there was no misunderstanding, either. You didn’t answer my question then and don’t seem to want to now, either.
        Like I said “lying BS,” is what we are speaking of, here.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Bryan,
        I am sure you would love to blame the Democrats and “anti Trump” this & that, but the global press understands the current risks that they (who choose to tell the truth) currently endure.
        It appears Mexico is almost as dangerous as war zones around the globe…not to mention, Jim Foley’s assassin had an English accent as is believed to have come from London?
        This is not a POTUS issue, this is a world issue of a current attack on freedom of the press.

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      • Bryan,
        I doubt U.S. citizenship would make them any safer, but our country may have to deal with the “Narco State” in the very near future and I doubt “the Wall” will stop a drug trade of $30 billion a year employing over 500,000 people in Mexico.
        Remember that many of those immigrants coming up from Guatemala were displaced from their homes by local drug cartels and the mounting violence.
        So, we are aleady dealing with fallout from the “drug war” in Mexico and Latin America.

        https://www.worldpoliticsreview.com/articles/21672/why-the-u-s-can-t-ignore-latin-america-s-security-challenges

        Like

      • Steve, we have been dealing with Narco states like Panama, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Mexico for years and years now. Drug mules have been pouring across our borders by the millions. Do we do what the Democrats want (open borders) and let them just come in at will or do we try like the successful Israelis and BUILD A WALL? Obviously open borders and spending 10’s to 100’s of billions on illegals IS NOT WORKING.

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      • Bryan,
        I would argue we are not doing enough to stop the “Narco” thing in Mexico and Latin America.
        The Mexican government is to the point where they are way under armed to contend with Cartel violence and murders….hence they turn a blind eye for the most part. The drives the displaced widows and children north from known aggressors.
        Sure the wall may stop some of the “chronics” from re-entry after deportation, but it will not touch the amount of cocaine and heroin flooding the streets of America.
        “A recent report from the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) said that drug overdoses kill more people in the US than car accidents or guns.”
        The “Mule theory” makes a good plot for Quentin Tarantino scripts, but DEA statistics tell us that is not the case any more.
        “[Now] well over 95% of the drugs are moving on the water via container ships, non-commercial vessels, pleasure boats, sail boats, fishing boats. They also have fast boats which try to outrun our law enforcement assets.”
        “We’ve seen growing use of self-propelled semi-submersibles (SPSSs) – low-profile vessels made out of marine-grade plywood [and] fibreglass with commercial engines. The smugglers spend up to a $1m (£665,000) to build one of these SPSSs for what is often just a one-way voyage.”
        Without extinguishing the root of this disease, the plague will continue to spread and that $6 Billion spent on the wall may have better avenues to fund…like say more Coast Guard and Customs Enforcement?
        Either way, we have a growing concern on our southern border.

        https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-34934574

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      • Sorry Steve, the majority of Central America drugs are not coming in by container ships, nor by boat. The gulf coast is “secure” using Aerostat balloons. Well, more secure than the border and the mules who bring bales of cocaine and heroin across by the thousands daily. A wall would certainly make it more difficult for them. If a wall cost billions to man and secure then I would rather pay that then welfare for millions of criminal illegals (oxymoron). Besides, Mexico is paid off by the narcos. Why would they change? Also, where is your outrage on Obama’s war on the police? Where is your concern there?

        Like

  9. Thank goodness Craig calls it like it is . No new speak or changing word definitions to fit the desired story. Well done Craig. May others follow in your bold clear steps .

    Like

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