All entries by this author

Many international human rights organizations raised their voices

Oct 14th, 2018 4:06 pm | By

Gulalai at last:

On 12th October, I was detained by FIA and my passport was confiscated because my name had been put on Exit Control List. Apparently, defending human rights has become a crime and security threat in our country. I was released after 9 hours of detention. I am overwhelmed with the support I received after I was detained by FIA. I am very thankful to the political groups, movements, international and national organizations, media, social media activists and individuals who raised their voice for me. I received tremendous organized support from leaders and workers of political groups including Women Democratic FrontPashtun Tahafuz Movement PTM – پښتون تحفظ موومنټ Awami Workers Party, and Awami National Party.

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The need to know

Oct 14th, 2018 4:03 pm | By


 … Read the rest

The kingdom says how dare you

Oct 14th, 2018 11:15 am | By

Saudi Arabia is issuing threats.

Saudi Arabia has said it will retaliate against any sanctions imposed over the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi, as the Riyadh stock market had its biggest fall in years.

The French, German and UK foreign secretaries ratcheted up the pressure by releasing a joint statement calling on the Saudi government to give a complete and detailed account of Khashoggi’s disappearance, adding that those found to be responsible must be held to account.

Riyadh vowed to hit back against any action. “The kingdom affirms its total rejection of any threats and attempts to undermine it, whether through economic sanctions, political pressure or repeating false accusations,” it said.

The kingdom affirms its right to murder … Read the rest

Say it authentically

Oct 14th, 2018 10:31 am | By

Rachel Anne Williams wrote a post on this question of believing what people say about themselves, in addition to that tweet.

Williams’s Twitter/Medium bio:

Author & writer, ex-academic philosopher, Science Nerd. Read more at Forthcoming book Transgressive with @JKPBooks

I can’t find where Williams was an academic philosopher, and given the quality of argument in this post I have to say I don’t believe it.

What does it mean to say trans people are who we say we are? It means that if a trans woman says she is a woman, then you should believe she is a woman (and likewise for trans-masculine and non-binary identities).

Trans exclusionary radical feminists (henceforth radfems) respond by saying “Why should I

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People’s authentic stories

Oct 14th, 2018 9:11 am | By

Another Rachel steps up to defend Rachel MacKinnon.

But the issue isn’t working hard and dedication and hitting the gym and practicing and working with coaches. The issue is doing all that with a huge physical advantage over all your competitors – the issue is doing it while competing against women while having a male body, and quite a large-framed male body at … Read the rest

MBS played them for suckers

Oct 13th, 2018 6:04 pm | By

Nicholas Kristof on Trump on Saudi Arabia and MBS and Khashoggi:

Turkey claims to have audiotape of Saudi interrogators torturing Jamal and killing him in the Saudi Consulate. None of this is confirmed, and we still don’t know exactly what happened; we all pray that Jamal will still reappear. But increasingly it seems that the crown prince, better known as M.B.S., orchestrated the torture, assassination and dismemberment of an American-based journalist using diplomatic premises in a NATO country.

That is monstrous, and it’s compounded by the tepid response from Washington. President Trump is already rejecting the idea of responding to such a murder by cutting off weapons sales. Trump sounds as if he believes that the consequence of such

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An important U.S. ally

Oct 13th, 2018 11:25 am | By

Why are we so cozy with Saudi Arabia, again?

Each year, Saudi Arabia employs, through consultants or otherwise, a host of retired American generals, diplomats, intelligence experts and others. Until now, they could assure themselves this was a win-win: lucrative for them, to be sure, but also enhancing mutual understanding with an important U.S. ally.

Now, as more and more evidence implicates Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in the reported murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi on Saudi diplomatic property in Istanbul, the equation has changed.

Not really. Saudi Arabia is a theocratic hell-hole that abuses women and girls, foreigners, atheists, dissenters – most people it can reach, in fact. The murder of Khashoggi is … Read the rest

Binalakshmi Nepram on the persecution of Gulalai Ismail

Oct 13th, 2018 10:34 am | By

More from RAW in WAR:

Binalakshmi Nepram, a threatened Indian human rights activist from the state of Manipur, and the 2018 #AnnaPolitkovskayaAward winner expressed her outrage at the arrest and persecution of Gulalai Ismail by the Pakistani authorities. She said:

“South Asia Under Siege ~ After crackdown on NGOs, journalists, activists, intellectuals, universities in India, neighbouring Pakistan follows suit with the arrest today of a brave woman activist Gulalai Ismail ~ The work of many like hers is to deepen democracy, for peace & justice, yet the AUTHORITARIAN REGIMES fear their work. Gulalai is just out on bail but may be detained again and her passport has been taken by the authorities. Gulalai is the recipient

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Justice for Gulalai

Oct 13th, 2018 10:29 am | By

Reach All Women in WAR on Facebook:

Brave Pashtun activist & 2017 #AnnaPolitkovskayaAward winner Gulalai Ismailwas arrested yesterday at Islamabad airport on charges of participating in and speaking at a peaceful demonstration in August 2018. She was kept in detention all day long and released on pre-arrest bail in the evening. Gulalai appeared in court today and the bail was confirmed, amidst fears that she would be re-arrested. Her passport was taken by the Pakistani authorities and was not returned to her and Gulalai’s name continues to be on an Exit Control List, as she is banned from foreign travel. RAW in WAR: Reach All Women in WAR called on Imran Khan (official) and his Government

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Unworkable and causing a headache

Oct 13th, 2018 10:03 am | By

Jen Gunter did a Very Serious Only Slightly Sarcastic review of Gwyneth Paltrow’s claim that there is no pseudoscience on Goop. [pause while everyone has a good laugh]


Objective: To identify evidence that Gwyneth Paltrow is correct in her statement that the website GOOP does not sell pseudoscience.

Materials and Methods: A search of the products sold on in the wellness section.

Results: Biologically implausible therapies and ill-researched products were identified. The majority of health products (95%) could not be supported by science.

Conclusions: There is no evidence to support Gwyneth Paltrow’s claim that goop is free of pseudoscience. In fact the opposite is true, goop is a classic example of pseudoscience profiteering. The bulk of their products

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The real estate exemption

Oct 13th, 2018 9:44 am | By

The Times on Prince Jared’s awesome scam to avoid paying federal income tax:

Over the past decade, Jared Kushner’s family company has spent billions of dollars buying real estate. His personal stock investments have soared. His net worth has quintupled to almost $324 million.

And yet, for several years running, Mr. Kushner — President Trump’s son-in-law and a senior White House adviser — appears to have paid almost no federal income taxes, according to confidential financial documents reviewed by The New York Times.

How? Via deduction for “depreciation.”

But the losses were only on paper — Mr. Kushner and his company did not appear to actually lose any money. The losses were driven by depreciation, a tax benefit that

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World record

Oct 13th, 2018 8:52 am | By

Talk about shameless…

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Make sure they can’t vote

Oct 12th, 2018 6:00 pm | By

More shameless voter suppression, this time in North Dakota.

The high court decided 6 to 2 Tuesday to leave in place a state law that requires residents to provide an ID displaying a residential address rather than a P.O. box number to vote. Republican lawmakers who pushed for the measure say the rule is designed to combat voter fraud.

But tribal officials and Democrats say it appears aimed at making it harder for thousands of Native Americans to vote, particularly those who live on reservations without conventional street names. The law specifically bans the use of P.O. boxes as an alternative form of address, rendering many tribal ID cards invalid.

But tribal officials have a plan.

Native American activists

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In his pocket

Oct 12th, 2018 5:09 pm | By

Back in March there were news stories about Jared Kushner sharing intelligence with the Saudi dictators.

Jared Kushner discussed classified information from the president’s daily briefing with Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who bragged that he had Kushner “in his pocket,” The Intercept reported on Wednesday, citing an unnamed source.

Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser,had access to the briefing, a highly sensitive intelligence update meant to be seen by only the president and his top advisers, before being stripped of his top-secret security clearance last month.

And, if this is accurate, he blabbed about it. To Saudi assistant-dictator Mohammed bin Salman, who apparently had Jamal Khashoggi killed last week.

When Salman

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Identity is a relation

Oct 12th, 2018 12:14 pm | By

Jane Clare Jones explains to us about deconstruction and social construction and identity and trans doctrine.

The notion of identity, and what we mean by identity, is key to this whole story. And the infinite irony of the way mangled-post-structuralism is currently washing around in the background of this debate is that if I had to sum up the core of deconstruction in one line, I’d say ‘it’s the critique of identity.’ That is, deconstruction properly interpreted is actually a really useful tool for explaining what’s so wrong with trans rights claims that ‘I AM WHAT I SAY I AM,’ and ‘I am the determinant of my identity,’ and, equally, the idea that identity is ‘a simple case of individual

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Guest post: At the mercy of black box algorithms trained by skewed data

Oct 12th, 2018 11:47 am | By

Originally a comment by latsot on The AI did not like women.

The interesting part (well. at least to people like me) is this:

It penalized resumes that included the word “women’s,” as in “women’s chess club captain.” And it downgraded graduates of two all-women’s colleges, according to people familiar with the matter.

Nobody told it to take notice of the word “women’s”, it worked that out all by itself. This is one of the deeper problems of machine learning: the software can generate unexpected concepts and make decisions based on them and there’s often no way to know this is happening. Sometimes these concepts can perform well in a task, but then start to do badly when input … Read the rest

The most persuasive and gruesome evidence

Oct 12th, 2018 10:57 am | By

The Post reports that Turkey says there is video of the torture and murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

The recordings show that a Saudi security team detained Khashoggi in the consulate after he walked in Oct. 2 to obtain an official document before his upcoming wedding, then killed him and dismembered his body, the officials said.

The audio recording in particular provides some of the most persuasive and gruesome evidence that the Saudi team is responsible for Khashoggi’s death, the officials said.

Turkey doesn’t want to share the recordings because they’re not supposed to be spying on other people’s consulates.

Mohammed has billed himself as a reformer and moderating force in Saudi Arabia, and he has become a key strategic

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Not cricket

Oct 12th, 2018 9:58 am | By

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She would be incredible

Oct 12th, 2018 9:28 am | By

Special meaning of “everyone” – everyone he talks to, everyone on Fox, everyone in his administration.

Actually, in reality, probably not even all of them. Trump’s abysmal theory of mind is quite capable of translating one person who nervously said (when asked) that it would be okay into everyone actively wanting it.

Because why would anyone actually want Ivanka Trump as UN ambassador? She’s a fashion marketer with no obvious intelligence and very obviously no expertise or knowledge. … Read the rest

Who is this “Steve Bannon”?

Oct 12th, 2018 9:13 am | By

About that citizenship question on the census

Wilbur Ross spoke with Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump’s former chief strategist, before including on the 2020 census a question about people’s citizenship, the Justice Department said in a court document that appears to contradict what the commerce secretary told Congress.

The disclosure came in a lawsuit by more than a dozen states, cities and advocacy groups seeking to block the U.S. from asking the question, claiming it’s discriminatory and designed to reduce the accuracy of the count by cutting participation.

In other words, Ross “appears to” have lied to Congress. That’s a no-no.

Ross has denied speaking to Bannon, a vocal opponent of immigration, telling a congressional committee in March that

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