Thursday, April 23, 2015

Letting Off Some Steam

I've had an evening to cool down because this issue -- lying about the weather -- bothers me the most. It's literally in your face.

Harvard Hotheads 

This out to really bring them to boil, right?

"Harvard University has named Thomas J. Hollister , a former banker and energy company executive, its chief financial officer, overseeing all matters of debt, cash, and financing for the nation’s wealthiest school. Hollister was most recently chairman of Tufts Medical Center’s board of trustees. He spent many years with Citizens Bank of Massachusetts, and was vice chairman of its parent company. From 2006 to 2013, Hollister was chief operating officer and financial chief for Global Partners LP, a Waltham-based company that distributes oil and gasoline and owns about 800 gas stations under brands including Exxon." 

I'm sure the kids will be protesting him then.

Related: Staples, Martha Stewart renew partnership

And her.

I also see that Tufts is gurgling the agenda-gushing goo as they always do

"Ben Weilerstein, 21, a member of Tufts Climate Action, said he thought the protest was a necessary step to bring attention to the role of fossil fuels in causing climate change. “This is important because Tufts has millions of dollars invested in an industry that is destroying communities across the world,” he said."

They hyperbolic, over-the-top, agenda-pushing jewspew is really too much.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not for the fo$$il fuel indu$try, far from it. I accept that fracking has ruined our water supply (don't worry; I did get you a glass of water but you gotta drink deep), Fukushima radiation has ruined (and is ruining) the Pacific, and that pipelines will be built. Had I got what I wanted clean energy would have been developed; instead, the tax loot was squandered and stolen, and trillions went for Wall Street banks and their wars. All that money is gone, so I gave up on that idea.

Speaking of that $wamp:

"At Everglades, Obama warns of climate change; President blasts opponents’ lack of action on issue" by Josh Lederman and Jennifer Kay Associated Press  April 23, 2015

EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK, Fla. — Obama’s trip to the Everglades on Wednesday, timed to coincide with Earth Day, marks an attempt to connect the dots between theoretical arguments about carbon emissions and real-life implications.

What irony! So what was the carbon footprint on that agenda-pushing propaganda? Thanks for helping out!

With his climate change agenda under attack in Washington and in courthouses across the United States, Obama has sought this week to force Americans to envision a world in which cherished natural wonders fall victim to pollution.

Oh, I see. He needs to FORCE US to SEE THINGS HIS WAY and not stick our head out the door and recall the last few years. Yup.

Obama, dressed down in a blue shirt and sunglasses, toured the Anhinga Trail in Everglades National Park, where a series of wooden walkways took him through dense shrubbery and over wetlands. A park ranger explained the history of the area to the president as alligators slithered in nearby shallows and small flocks of large birds ducked in and out of the deep-green waters.

In Florida, rising sea levels have allowed saltwater to seep inland, threatening drinking water for Floridians and the extraordinary native species and plants that call the Everglades home....

I'm sure I have Everglades links regarding snakes and such (maybe the saltwater will kill them), but I'm going to trim this short.


RelatedObama Helps Veterans See the Light

I think there is a light on at the landfill, and I expect to be seeing at lot more stories like this (true or likely not) over the next few months to prove to you how hot it is.

You just never mind all that shaking going on for
whatever reason.

And then, speaking of inconvenient truths....

"For Ben Affleck, lessons from inconvenient truths" by Ty Burr Globe Staff  April 22, 2015

This week’s celebrity tempest in a teapot is brought to you by Ben Affleck, Henry Louis Gates Jr., PBS, and Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton. Oh, and WikiLeaks, which, if it had hands, would be rubbing them together in adolescent glee.

The website, whose editor in chief, Julian Assange, is still living in political asylum at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London, recently released tens of thousands of documents left over from the Sony hack late last year — the ones that the original hackers (North Koreans or whoever; the jury’s still out) hadn’t bothered to make public.

Ah, so now the false flag propaganda is a whatever, whoever, huh? Mind-manipulating psyop myth accomplished and that's that, 'eh?

Among those memos is a back-and-forth between Harvard professor Gates and Lynton about whether to expose the fact that Affleck had ancestors who owned slaves on Gates’s PBS documentary series, “Finding Your Roots.”

Who were the slave drivers of past centuries?

The documentary show probes the genealogy of famous people who agree to discuss the findings on air. Sony doesn’t have a stake in “Finding Your Roots”; Gates appears to have simply reached out to Lynton for advice. The e-mails, from the summer of 2014, before the series’ second-season premiere, show the two men dithering about what to do about a certain A-list star’s request.

“Here’s my dilemma,” writes Gates, “confidentially, for the first time, one of our guests has asked us to edit out something about one of his ancestors — the fact that he owned slaves. Now, four or five of our guests this season descend from slave owners, including Ken Burns. We’ve never had anyone ever try to censor or edit what we found. He’s a megastar. What do we do?”

Gates adds that “to do this would be a violation of PBS rules, actually, even for Batman.” (Affleck is currently shooting the Warner Bros. film “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.”) Lynton advises, “I would take it out if no one knows, but if it gets out that you are editing the material based on this kind of sensitivity then it gets tricky. Again, all things being equal I would definitely take it out.”

Gates argues back, reasoning that if the issue became public knowledge, “It would embarrass [the star] and compromise our integrity. . . . Once we open the door to censorship, we lose control of the brand.” 

It only confirms even more what we already knew.

And yet, when the Affleck episode of “Finding Your Roots” aired on PBS on Oct. 14, the focus was on a Civil War ancestor who became an occultist, a Revolutionary War forebear, and Affleck’s mother, who was a Freedom Rider during the civil rights era. No mention of slavers.

Of course, the information did come out, and there has been the expected media pig pile. PBS has announced an in-house investigation. Gates has released a statement that says, in part, “Ultimately, I maintain editorial control on all of my projects and, with my producers, decide what will make for the most compelling program. In the case of Mr. Affleck we focused on what we felt were the most interesting aspects of his ancestry.”

Affleck apologized this week with a lengthy statement of his own, the gist of which says, “I didn’t want any television show about my family to include a guy who owned slaves. I was embarrassed. The very thought left a bad taste in my mouth. . . . I regret my initial thoughts that the issue of slavery not be included.”

It’s mortifying to all involved, to be sure. On the other hand, it’s a nonstory if you profess to not care about celebrities or how any of us come to terms with inconvenient family histories. That said, there are still small but sharp lessons to be learned here. 

Or a nation's, for that matter.

First of all, the truth is a splinter that, no matter how deeply embedded, will eventually work its way to the surface.

That I agree with, and it became my life's calling.

This wasn’t always necessarily true, but it certainly is in the Internet era. I’ll leave aside the issue of whether the Sony documents should have been made public; the fact remains they were. If any corporation or citizen still believes their every keystroke might not someday be seen by the world, this should dispel all doubts.

The revelations of the Sony hack aren’t criminal but they bare the way people talk and think when they believe no one’s listening — the stupid racial jokes and celeb trashing that cost Sony Pictures cochairwoman Amy Pascal her job; the kowtowing to movie-star clout evident in the exchange between Gates and Lynton. The only way forward is to assume there are no secrets in American business, or in American life, anymore. This is our brave new world. Get used to it.

I guy wrote a book about that decades ago, warning us all. Now this guy shoves the tyranny that came with terror in our face while dismissing the Jewish supremacism that quietly leaked out. 

Yeah, get used to it. Maybe we all would be better off with the elite blowing this world into nuclear smithereens. That's not a future I want for the children, because I likely won't be making it into the brave new world (that's already here).

As for Affleck — well, our feelings about him are complicated. As a famous son of Boston, he is subject to the culturally entrenched way we’ve always treated our success stories, praising them to the skies when they reflect us well, kicking them to the curb whenever they act “better than they should.” Arguably, Affleck has exported this double-edged response to the world, and it’s not like he hasn’t seemed to invite it. For every “Good Will Hunting” or “Argo,” there’s a “Gigli” or a “Daredevil”; for every “Gone Baby Gone,” there’s a “Pearl Harbor.” We love it when our local heroes make good. We love it a little too much when they fail.

I interviewed Affleck a few years ago, during the promotional tour for “Argo.”


This also gets to what we deserve to know about famous people versus what we think we’re entitled to know, whether that’s family history or business correspondence. What’s truly personal and what’s shared history? Other guests on “Finding Your Roots” have confronted the fact of slave-owning ancestors: Burns, newsman Anderson Cooper, actor Bill Paxton, ex-Yankee Derek Jeter. There’s a probability that any American, black or white, whose ancestry on these shores predates the Civil War has this particular skeleton in his or her closet.

Which of course is why the closet has to be opened, especially by people we raise up for adoration and scrutiny. Affleck should know that, and Skip Gates should especially know that; the abiding mystery of this particular dust-up is how and why the professorial producer choked.

We prefer to think that the sins of America’s past happened to other people’s great-grandparents. The truth is that we only move forward when we realize we all share the same DNA. Cultural and literal. Celebrity and commoner. Good and evil.

They always come in pairs.


Time for a reality check with the Bo$ton Globe.

Here is some good stuff on that:

""More Embarrassing Emails: The Sony Hack B-Sides"  "11 Revelations From WikiLeaks’ Sony Hack Emails" "WikiLeaks Reveals Sony's Hidden Ties with Washington"  It is fun to watch the suits make fun of the celebutards they have to work with, but the political machinations are where it gets interesting (RAND interests me particularly these days, especially given its possible/probable role in September 11):
"Sony is a member of the MPAA and a strong lobbyist on issues around internet policy, piracy, trade agreements and copyright issues. The emails show the back and forth on lobbying and political efforts, not only with the MPAA but with politicians directly. In November 2013 WikiLeaks published a secret draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) IP Chapter. The Sony Archives show SPE's internal reactions, including discussing the impact with Michael Froman, the US Trade Representative. It also references the case against Megaupload and the extradition of its founder Kim DotCom from New Zealand as part of SPE's war on piracy.

The connections and alignments between Sony Pictures Entertainment and the US Democratic Party are detailed through the archives, including SPE's CEO Lynton attending dinner with President Obama at Martha's Vineyard and Sony employees being part of fundraising dinners for the Democratic Party. There are emails setting up a collective within the corporation to get around the 5,000 USD limit on corporate campaign donations to give 50,000 USD to get the Democratic New York Governor Andrew Cuomo elected as "Thanks to Governor Cuomo, we have a great production incentive environment in NY and a strong piracy advocate that’s actually done more than talk about our problems.
Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton is on the board of trustees of RAND Corporation, an organisation specialising in research and development for the United States military and intelligence sector. The Sony Archives show the flow of contacts and information between these two major US industries, whether it is RAND wanting to invite George Clooney and Kevin Spacey to events, or Lynton offering contact to Valerie Jarrett (a close advisor to Obama) or RAND desiring a partnership with IMAX for digital archiving. With this close tie to the military-industrial complex it is no surprise that Sony reached out to RAND for advice regarding its North Korea film The Interview. RAND provided an analyst specialised in North Korea and suggested Sony reach out to the State Department and the NSA regarding North Korea's complaints about the upcoming film. The Sony documents also show Sony being in possession of a brochure for an NSA-evaluated online cloud security set-up called INTEGRITY
The archives also detail SPE's development of its own films and collecting "intelligence" on rival pictures, for example documents in the archive reveal the budget breakdown for Oliver Stone's rival picture Snowden, which is currently in production. The budget reveals the rights spend: 700,000 USD to the Guardian's Luke Harding, 600,000 USD to Oliver Stone for his work on the script and 1,000,000 USD to Snowden's Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena."
"In Case You Needed Another Reason to Look Askance at WikiLeaks" Look who is not happy."

"Amongst other things, the Sony emails provide useful insight into how the Jewish controllers of the Entertainment-Industrial-Warmongering Complex think and scheme:
  1.  "Al Jazeera America boss mocked as “Hamas” by top Hollywood execs - leaked email"
  2. "Fwd: Is the Gaza War Really Over?"  (Background; note that it is the purest essence of 'anti-Semitism' to ascribe this kind of discussion to powerful Jews, yet here it is).
  3. "Sony CEO Michael Lynton Slams Middle East Peace Talks In Leaked Emails: ‘Let Them All Kill Each Other!’ PLUS Secret Chats With State Department"
  1. "Leaked Sony emails reveal Hollywood execs efforts to support Israel"
  2. "Sony CEO 'couldn't wait' to meet Netanyahu, leaked emails show"
  3. "WikiLeaks shows Sony concerned by IDF's use of its cameras in Gaza bombings"
  4. "How the Rich Get Into Ivies: Behind the Scenes of Elite Admissions"
  5. "Sony Execs Freaked Out That Its Marketing People Wanted To Use Torrents For Marketing"
  6. "As Sony Continues Threatening Reporters, NY Times Reporter Wins Pulitzer For Reporting On Sony's Emails"
  7. "Our Response To Sony Sending Us A Threat Letter For Reporting On The Company's Leaked Emails" (see "Streisand effect"; note that the argument used in the letter, that the action of WikiLeaks somehow 'rewards' North Korea, is hilariously stupid)
  8. "Chris Dodd's Email Reveals What MPAA Really Thinks Of Fair Use: 'Extremely Controversial'"  Of all the whores in and around the Washington cesspool, Chris Dodd is the whoriest.
  9. "Chris Dodd Implies US Gov't Should Go After Wikileaks For Publishing Leaked Sony Emails"
  10. "Leaked Emails Reveal MPAA Plans To Pay Elected Officials To Attack Google"
  11. "Sony should not be able to tell journalists what to print"

Did I forget to mention the snow at the baseball game?


From homeless to Harvard, with the help of crowd funding

Thanks to Greenberg and Rosencrantz!

US maps areas of increased earthquakes from human activity

Emu chicks begin hatching at Harvard Museum of Natural History

The apes have already been forgotten.

Tufts blocks food at protest

Baker signals support for expanded pipeline in New England

Confirming what I said above, while I'm told Patrick was against it!


Diverse campuses, but still few black students

Tufts protesters end sit-in demanding fossil fuel divestment

Where’s the Wikileaks outrage?

"The president of Wellesley College, H. Kim Bottomly, announced Friday that she will step down in July 2016 after nine years as head of the school. Bottomly’s letter to the college gave no reason for her departure. Bottomly announced her decision to the board of trustees during its meeting Friday, according to a news release. Bottomly is the first scientist to lead the women’s liberal arts college, which has about 2,500 students. She took the helm in August 2007, a year before the financial collapse that crippled the nation. The national recession caused the college’s endowment to shrink and the budget to run in the red. As the country recovered, Bottomly also helped the school rebuild its finances. The school’s endowment last year rose to $1.9 billion, up from $1.6 billion in 2013."