Day: September 23, 2016

Ted Cruz to endorse Donald Trump, whom he earlier called an utterly amoral bully, narcissist and pathological liar

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A FEW WEEKS AGO:

“I’m going to do something I haven’t done the entire campaign. I’m going to tell you what I really think of Donald Trump. This man is a pathological liar. He doesn’t know the difference between truth and lies. He lies practically every word that comes out of his mouth. And in a pattern that I think is straight out of a psychology text book, his response is to accuse everybody else of lying. … Donald Trump is such a narcissist that Barack Obama looks at him and says, ‘Dude, what’s your problem?’ The man is utterlly amoral. … Whatever lie he’s telling, in that minute he believes it. But the man is utterly amoral. Morality does not exist for him. It’s why he went after Heidi [Cruz] directly, attacked her and smeared her. Heidi isn’t pretty enough for him. … Donald is a bully. … Bullies don’t come from strength, they come from weakness. … There’s a reason Donald builds giant buildings and puts his name on them everywhere he goes. …Donald has a real problem with women”

TODAY

Ted Cruz plans to back Donald Trump for the presidency as early as Friday, according to multiple sources familiar with the Texas senator’s decision

Then, no-one felt Trump could win. Now, though, things are looking likely. Cruz was always the biggest coward in team #NeverTrump, and now he hears the guillotines being sharpened. God does love a cheerful giver.

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Glenn Reynolds apologizes for saying drivers surrounded during street protest should "Run Them Down"

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Glenn Reynolds, blogger, USA Today contributor and law professor, had an answer for drivers who found themselves surrounded during protests in Charlotte over the police killing of a black person: “Run Them Down.” It was not a very good answer: he was temporarily suspended from Twitter, got in hot water with his editors at USA Today, and his university made clear they considered it an embarassment to the faculty. And so apologies are born.

‘I didn’t live up to my own standards, and I didn’t meet USA TODAY’s standards. For that I apologize.’ … Those words can easily be taken to advocate drivers going out of their way to run down protesters. I meant no such thing, and I’m sorry it seemed I did. What I meant is that drivers who feel their lives are in danger from a violent mob should not stop their vehicles.

The value of a Tennessee higher education reaffirmed!

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The Pet Dragon – A whimsical girl-meets-dragon story that also introduces Chinese characters

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See sample pages from this book at Wink.

The Pet Dragon

by Christopher Niemann

Greenwillow Books

2008, 40 pages, 9 x 11.8 x 0.4 inches (hardcover)

$16 Buy a copy on Amazon

Chinese characters are wonderfully expressive, straddling the fine line between the written word and illustration. Esteemed graphic designer and picture book creator Christoph Niemann realized as much with The Pet Dragon, a whimsical story about a Chinese girl who raises a baby dragon to adulthood. In his introduction to the book, Niemann states that he had fun imagining connections between the calligraphic characters and their meanings. Reading the book, it’s clear that the author has a love of his subject and was very much enjoying himself.

The story is straightforward. A young Chinese girl named Lin receives a baby dragon who grows too quickly to stay in her home. After breaking a vase, Lin’s father condemns the baby dragon to its cage. The wily dragon escapes, leading Lin on a quest to find her beloved pet. Niemann enriches his tale by transposing Chinese characters on top of his illustrations to demonstrate the relationship between each symbol and what it represents. A forest is shown as a series of trees with the symbol for tree superimposed on them, the curving lines below indicating the roots and the extended lines at the top stretching outward for the branches. The upraised slashes and crossed lines in the symbol for father become the raised eyebrows and nose on his face, while the character denoting mountain has its three upward prongs displayed over a towering mountain range. The story concludes with the twin calligraphic symbols denoting the word friend displayed atop the reunited Lin and the titular dragon.

Niemann’s artwork is clean and modernist in style, and his novel approach to integrating expressive, ebullient images with the sparse, minimalist strokes of traditional calligraphy proves both endearing and effective. Although this is a book that can be read quickly, the reader should also take time to examine and enjoy the interplay between pictures and meaning that the author meticulously constructs.

– Lee Hollman

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Instead of a waterbed, how about a sand bed?

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My friend, Mrs. Homegrown of Root Simple, looks at sleep mattresses filled with sand.

Recently a friend and frequent Root Simple commenter who goes by the handle “P” here, sent us an intriguing note. Like us, she lives in the Los Angeles area, and like us, she’s been obsessed with the idea of a mattress alternative for a while. Then she got a lead on an exciting bed option, and she shared it with us, saying basically, “I know this couple that you have to meet. They’ve made a bed out of sand!”

So we went to meet Michael Garcia and Stephanie Wing-Garcia and their sand mattress. They live just a few minutes from our house, in a big, sunny apartment full of beautiful things–and they sleep on a king sized bed which consists of a low wooden platform, a pair of twin-sized canvas mattress casings filled with ground white marble sand, which in turn are topped by an inch thick natural latex mat and a layer of sheepskin.

They love their bed. The idea for it came them in a flash of inspiration, and it has changed their lives. Stephanie credits the bed with healing the excruciating chronic back pain which she’d been suffering from for seven years.

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Video: Keith Lamont Scott's wife captured killing by Charlotte, N.C. police. "Don't shoot him. He has no weapon."

Photo of Keith Scott

Rakeyia Scott, the wife of recent police shooting victim Keith L. Scott, recorded a video on her cell phone just before and after the fatal shooting of her husband by police in Charlotte, N.C. The New York Times obtained the video from attorneys for the Scott family. It includes graphic violence of a man being killed by police, and strong language.
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Geeky Lego Crafts

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Rarely do I hear “Oh, awesome!” when I hand my daughter a book. David Scarfe’s Geeky LEGO Crafts also elected squeals of delight.

Packed with projects like building your own Space Invaders, and a cassette tape, Geeky LEGO Crafts immediately led us to dragging out a few tubs of LEGO and to get snapping! The directions are great, and easy to follow.

We especially enjoy the Tetrix fridge magnets!

Geeky LEGO Crafts by David Scarfe via Amazon

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Phoenix officers accused of forcing man to eat marijuana

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Three gentleman were allowed to resign from their jobs after they were accused of forcing a 19-year-old man to eat marijuana. The gentlemen’s names are Richard G. Pina, Jason E. McFadden, and Michael J. Carnicle, and they were all Phoenix Police Department officers.

The officers’ superior, Lt. Jeff Farrior, was told about the incident but chose not to investigate. For this, he was demoted to the position of sergeant.

From USA Today:

All three officers had been wearing body cameras but they were turned off at the time, he said.

The 19-year-old, a Phoenix resident, brought the matter to the department’s attention, Yahner said. The man reported that several officers stopped him for a traffic violation at about 3:30 a.m. Sept. 13. The officers were reported to have found marijuana in his vehicle during the stop, [Phoenix Police Chief Joe] Yahner said.

When the marijuana was found, the man told police, officers demanded he eat the marijuana to avoid being taken to jail, Yahner said. The man said he ate about a gram of marijuana, was issued traffic tickets and then released. He reported being sick as a result.

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12-year-old boy accused of raping 6-year-old girl has has bail adjusted to take family vacation

Image: Pixabay/Public Domain

A 12-year-old Australian boy accused of twice raping a six-year-old girl in a school restroom has had his bail conditions amended so he can take a vacation with his family.

Via The Independent:

The boy is accused of raping the girl twice in separate attacks and is further accused of indecently assaulting her three further times with the other 12-year-old boy.

The boys were arrested at Chatswood Police Station on 30 August and suspended from school when police were alerted by the girl’s parents to the incident after it took place.

The boy has been charged with three counts of aggravated indecency in company, two counts of sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 10 and one count of indecent assault.

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Psychology's reproducibility crisis: why statisticians are publicly calling out social scientists

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Princeton University psych prof Susan Fiske published an open letter denouncing the practice of using social media to call out statistical errors in psychology research, describing the people who do this as “terrorists” and arguing that this was toxic because of the structure of social science scholarship, having an outsized effect on careers.
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Will $120m video game Star Citizen ever be ready to launch?

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Star Citizen is an epic game development project, crowdfunded to the tune of $124m (million!) and directed by industry legend Chris Roberts. But whether it’ll end up an epic game remains unclear, as endless feature creep, ambition and internal rancor see the project enter its fifth year. While Roberts was bothering his devs to add multiple layers of clothing to the game, each with different fabric properties, David Braben was shipping Elite 4 to hungry star pilots. (more…)

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Notorious copyright troll sentenced to 20 weeks' prison time for beating Uber driver

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Robert Croucher owns Hatton & Berkeley, a firm that sent “speculative invoices” to people it accused of illegally downloading the Robert Redford movie “The Company You Keep” — letters so egregious that Lord Lucas described the company as “scammers” and the letters as “extortion,” urging Britons to “put them in the bin.”
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Your tax dollars subsidized $125m executive bonus for Wells Fargo exec who led massive fraud

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Normally, companies that give “performance pay” to their execs can only write off the first $1M: but when Wells Fargo gave $125M to Carrie Tolstedt (shown above receiving American Banker’s 2010 award for being “the most powerful woman in banking”) as she “retired” after overseeing a 5-year period in which Wells Fargo’s top brass were aware that their employees were opening 2 million fake accounts in their customers’ names, Wells structured the payment as a “bonus,” meaning that the company took a $78 million off its taxes, pocketing $27m in savings.
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These foldable Bluetooth headphones arrived just in time for the iPhone 7

With the iPhone headphone jack having gone by the wayside, we’re excited about the addition of the FRANKLIN Bluetooth Headphones in our store. These headphones are foldable so they’re easy to carry around, but most importantly, they pack impressive sound.

Our biggest struggle with Bluetooth headphones is the worry of them dying at the worst moment. This pair lasts an impressive 8-10 hours on a single charge, which is one of the best we’ve tried. And the fact that they are wireless is well worth the inconvenience of charging them up once in a while. They also feature a built-in microphone and controls that let you answer, end, reject, and redial.

So if you’re ready to upgrade your listening experience in addition to your iPhone, check out the FRANKLIN Bluetooth headphones – just $39.99 in our store.

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Trump fan Omarosa: "Every Critic, Every Detractor, Will Have to Bow Down to President Trump’

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Frontline’s forthcoming documentary about millionaire Donald Trump’s bid for the presidency airs next week; the trailer’s embedded above. Here’s a completely normal, not at all crazy line from Trump supporter Omarosa:

“Every critic, every detractor, will have to bow down to President Trump. It’s everyone who’s ever doubted Donald, who ever disagreed, who ever challenged him. It is the ultimate revenge to become the most powerful man in the universe.”

The Presidency Part 45: The Ultimate Revenge.

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Facebook 'near-billionaire' Palmer Luckey secretly funding racist pro-Trump hate meme machine

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Palmer Luckey is the founder of virtual reality tech firm Oculus, which was bought by Facebook for $2 billion. With a portion of his huge pile of Oculus cash, Luckey is funding a pro-Donald Trump “shitposting” tactical team that churns out racist, sexist, hatey anti-Hillary Clinton memes and works to make them go viral.

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Cops pepper-spray 15-year-old girl who fell off her bike

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This is very sad and infuriating. A 15-year-old girl from Hagerstown, Maryland was riding her bike and collided with a car. When police arrived they told her an ambulance was going to take her to the hospital. She didn’t want to go. She got back on her bike, but before she could get away, an officer grabbed her from behind. The next thing you know, she was roughed up, cuffed, put in the back of a patrol car, and then pepper sprayed. Instead of taking her to the hospital, the officers took her to the police station for interrogation.

The girl was black, and the police officers were white. It made me sick to watch this video. She’d just been in a bad accident, flew 15 feet through the air, and was knocked out. The police were cold, harsh, and violent with her. They kept aggressively shouting at her “Stop!” and “What’s your name!” Imagine your own child suffering a head injury and then being treated like this. Her frightened shrieks are heartwrenching.

From the Daily Beast:

[Hagerstown Police Captain] Paul Kifer said the girl’s detention was standard procedure.

“We’re not gonna let her go until she’s released to a parent or guardian,” he told The Daily Beast. “If we let her go and she goes around the corner and has an aneurism and dies, that’s on us.”

But [attorney Robin] Ficker said the force of the girl’s arrest contradicts the police argument that she required urgent treatment.

“Well if someone may have brain damage, why are you slamming her against a wall? Why are you putting her in a police car,” he said, “without a seatbelt, I might add, in violation of police policy.”

Even after police seat the handcuffed girl in the squad car, she refuses to pull her feet into the vehicle, body camera footage shows. Police fire pepper spray at her face from close range and slam the door while she is coughing and screaming. The car pulls away while the girl is still shouting and crying.

But police did not take her to a hospital, Ficker said. Instead, the girl was transported to the police station, where she was interrogated and charged with disorderly conduct, two counts of second degree assault, possession of marijuana and failure to obey a traffic device.

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