1. Soros calls out social media
Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, George Soros called out social media giants Facebook and Google as “menaces to society.” He notes that the two companies control over half of all advertising revenue and are so pervasive today as to have a major influence on attitudes and beliefs.
Soros is absolutely correct that the largest Internet companies are near-monopolies with far too much influence, but his invocation of John Stuart Mill is intriguing. Soros is well-known for funding “color revolutions” around the world through his Open Society Foundation, and Otpor!
This may well be a pot and kettle situation, but more likely it’s a prologue to what is to come.
2. Two videos released showing police callousness
The release of two stunning videos is renewing interest in police accountability. The first involved Bijan Ghaisar, a 25-year old accountant who had been rear ended earlier on the George Washington Parkway. After the accident, Ghaisar drove away. Leaving the scene is a felony in Virginia, so a “be-on-the-lookout” was issued for the Jeep Grand Cherokee with “BIJAN” for a license plate.
The video shows Ghaisar stopping at a stop sign. One Park Police vehicle pulls up behind, while a second pulls in front of the car. Officers emerge and draw weapons. The car moves slightly, and shots ring out. In all 9 shots were fired before the car rolled into the ditch. Mr. Ghaisar would die in the hospital days later. No official cause of death has been released.
For months we've been demanding to see this video.
Police executed 25 y/o Bijan Ghaisar, an accountant.
He was unarmed & non-violent.
He drove away from a very minor car accident in which he was the victim.
Police then chased him down, pulled him over, and shot him 9 times pic.twitter.com/FUUAhIMOuN
— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) January 25, 2018
The second video is from Norman, Ohio where a man had entered the hospital seeking treatment for a headache. Norman Regional Hospital reported Marconia Kessee to local police in a 911 call.
“I just got a message from my supervisor that we’ve got a patient out in our waiting room that’s wigged out and they need some assistance,” the caller from the hospital said.
Police were dispatched to remove Mr. Kessee from hospital grounds. Mr. Kessee showed signs of great distress, even asking several times if the police were going to kill him. Eventually it was decided to arrest him for “trespassing.” What followed is even more heartbreaking. Cops tormented and teased Mr. Kessee accusing him of “faking illness” to get a place to stay, and dragged him off of hospital property. He was arrested, handcuffed, and put into a patrol car. While in the car, Mr. Kessee said, “I’m dying!” He was taken to a detention center where he died a few hours later.
The shortened bodycam videos have since been removed from the Internet, but this article contains the full 22+ minute nightmare.
3. ShareBlue removed from whitelist – r/politics
The “politics” subReddit just announced that ShareBlue, a vehicle for promotion of “establishment” Democratic Party propaganda has been removed from its “whitelist” for repeated violations of the subReddit’s media disclosure policy. On several occasions, Reddit users were found to be submitting and commenting on links from ShareBlue Media as if they were not affiliated with the company.
Recently, the subReddit changed their disclosure policy to require that users share their connection to any media creator’s work they were sharing or commenting on.
r/politics expressly forbids users who are employed by a source to post link submissions to that source without broadcasting their affiliation with the source in question. Employees of any r/politics sources should only participate in our sub under their organization name, or via flair identifying them as such which can be provided on request. Users who are discovered to be employed by an organization with a conflict of interest without self identifying will be banned from r/politics. Systematic violations of this policy may result in a domain ban for those who do not broadcast their affiliation.
We also sent a message to the account associated with ShareBlue (identifying information has been removed):
Effective immediately we are updating our rules to clearly indicate that employees of sources must disclose their relationship with their employer, either by using an appropriate username or by requesting a flair indicating your professional affiliation. We request that you cease submissions of links to Shareblue, or accept a flair [removed identifying information]. Additionally, we request that any other employees or representatives of ShareBlue immediately cease submitting and voting on ShareBlue content, as this would be a violation of our updated rules on disclosure of employment. Identifying flair may be provided upon request. Note that we have in the past taken punitive measures against sources / domains that have attempted to skirt our rules, and that continued disregard for our policies may result in a ban of any associated domains.
Within the past week, another account began exhibiting the same behavior. The moderators invoked the rule against self-promotion:
You should not hide your affiliation to your project or site, or lie about who you are or why you like something… Don’t use sockpuppets to promote your content on Reddit.
We have taken these rules seriously since the day they were implemented, and this was a clear violation. A moderator vote to remove ShareBlue from the whitelist passed quickly and unanimously.
4. Billy Corgan posts disturbing images and messages suggesting end-of-life conditions
Former frontman of the Smashing Pumpkins recently posted some disturbing things on his Instagram account. He included a photo of what appears to be his arm with a badly bruised hand and an IV connected. The caption reads:
Sometimes rock and roll has its costs. But it does occur to me sitting here that my aim is to make peace with my family first, and then spend whatever time I have left here making peace with God #loveisallyouneed
He later posted a new song called, “I’m f-i-n-e!” followed by,
Life moves fast. I often find myself saying, ‘I can’t believe that it’s been a year since I was doing such and such.’ My humble suggestion? Embrace the moment you are in, celebrate those who have been on the journey with you, and cherish those ancestors that brought you here.
Nothing is more important than family.
Corgan had recently been seen together with members of the Pumpkins, with the exception of bassist D’arcy, who posted she had not been invited. The appearance had prompted speculation of an impending reunion.
5. Delaware Charter Schools would get increase under Carney’s budget
After Gov. John Carney’s presentation yesterday outlining his budget proposal for the upcoming cycle, Exceptional Delaware picked up on a key piece of information.
John Carney has kept up former Gov. Jack Markell’s “education reform” efforts during his term. During the State of the State Address last week, he mentioned Christina School District by name many times over. Gov. Carney has had a less than friendly relationship with the district.
Charter schools in Delaware have also been a source of much debate. Charter schools play by a different set of rules than more traditional public schools, especially when it comes to funding. Despite the bonuses handed out to the charter system, some of those schools still face massive budget shortfalls and an inability to attract the requisite number of students. Audits of charter schools’ funding and expenditures are sometimes hard to come by.
Despite the disagreements, Gov. Carney has exercised his unchecked power to raise charter funding due to “inflation,” without being required to peg the claim to any specific statistical or economic data.