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IRS Needs Help Destroying Hard Drives

IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 hard drives…

Days after IRS officials said in a sworn statement that former top agency employee Lois G. Lerner’s computer memory had been wiped clean, the agency put out word to contractors Monday that it needs help to destroy at least another 3,200 hard drives.

The Internal Revenue Service solicitation for “media destruction” services reflects an otherwise routine job to protect sensitive taxpayer information, but it was made while the agency’s record destruction practices remain under a sharp congressional spotlight.

Congressional investigators of the IRS targeting of conservative groups have been hampered by the unexplained destruction of emails and other records of Ms. Lerner, the former head of the IRS tax-exempt division and a central figure in the scandal.

The loss of Ms. Lerner’s hard drive also raised broader questions about why the tax agency never reported the missing records to the National Archives and Records Administration, as required by the Federal Records Act.

While those questions remained unresolved, IRS officials signaled plans to destroy tens of thousands of additional electronic records.

after all the shit that’s happened and come out about the IRS these past two or more years, isn’t it a little bit amazing that some hold hasn’t been put on any and all destruction of electronic records (and hard drives)?! i mean, seriously… what the hell.

if the republicans ever get the upper hand, i hope like hell the push hard on passing a Flat / Fair Tax… and while i’m dreaming: term limits, a secure border, an energy bill, and a balanced budget amendment.

NYPD Investigating White Flags On Brooklyn Bridge…

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Bill’s Dirty Secret? The Energizer.

Bill Clinton’s secret ‘mistress,’ code name: ‘Energizer’

Bill Clinton reportedly has a buxom blond mistress who visits so often when Hillary Clinton isn’t home in Chappaqua that the former president’s Secret Service detail have given her an unofficial code name: Energizer.

This is according to Ronald Kessler in “The First Family Detail: Secret Service Agents Reveal the Hidden Lives of Presidents,” due Aug. 5 from Crown Forum.

Kessler is no stranger to the controversies surrounding the Secret Service.

He broke the story that Secret Service agents protecting President Obama in Cartagena, Colombia, hired prostitutes, and put the president in jeopardy.

The book, portions of which I’ve obtained, says none of the normal protocols is followed when Energizer arrives in her SUV, sometimes just minutes after Hillary has left the Westchester house.

you almost just gotta laugh, i mean… do those secret service agents have a sense of humor or what? the “energizer”… haha

p.s. how long until TMZ gets a pic of the energizer?

Federal court rules Obamacare subsidies illegal…

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Some Crazy Ads

most ads are all about selling — boring and annoying… but most of the “controversial” ones you see crop up are usually pretty damn creative.

i still think those ads of various world leaders kissing each other will forever be burned into my brain — i’d almost like the smack the shit out of the bastard that came up with those.

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Gas the Jews!

‘Gas the Jews!’: European anti-Semitism during the Gaza crisis

Since the outbreak of fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, there’s been a wave of street-level demonstrations rallying against the war. These protestors are generally highly critical of Israel and blame it for the current round of violence, but the vast majority want an end to the violence and are demanding it peacefully.

But the peaceful demonstrators are not alone in turning out to the streets over the Israel-Gaza conflict. A small-but-disturbing fraction of the international anger over the war has escalated into outright anti-Semitism: shouting “gas the Jews!” during protests in Germany, attacking synagogues in France, and beating a rabbi in Morocco. These attacks are not new: they come at time when anti-Semitic incidents around the world are worryingly on the rise.

To give you a sense of what’s going on, here are incidents from four different countries of anti-Semitism during the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict. The worst reported upswing in anti-Semitism has been in Europe, particularly France, and three of the countries we examine are on the continent.

seems like there’s almost always been a strain of anti-semitism in europe — and throughout the world, really — but it is a little alarming to see it rising once again all over europe of late.

personally, i hope isreal keeps pushing forward and actually takes out Hamas this time around… kinda doubt it’ll happen, but that’s what i would do.

9 questions about the Israel-Palestine conflict you were too embarrassed to ask

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Teen Strangled, Man Decapitated

Teen strangled, man decapitated in online sex case

WYOMING, Mich. (AP) — A pregnant Michigan teenager was strangled and her boyfriend was decapitated after apparently connecting with a stranger through the online service Craigslist for a sexual encounter, police said Monday.

The police chief in Wyoming, a Grand Rapids suburb, said that 18-year-old Brooke Slocum was held captive before her death. Her body was found Thursday in the trunk of the suspect’s car. She was eight months pregnant.

Chief James Carmody says her boyfriend, Charles Oppenneer, 25, was found decapitated in a park a day earlier. His head hasn’t been found.

It’s likely that Oppenneer died of some kind of head trauma, but that couldn’t be determined without his head being found, police said.

Emails indicate that Slocum connected with the suspect, 31-year-old Brady Oestrike, through a Craigslist ad and arranged a sexual encounter where Oppenneer would be present, according to investigators.

damn man, wtf?!

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Step Up, Microsoft

Microsoft CEO, Seeking Growth, Tells Managers to Step It Up

The day Satya Nadella became Microsoft Corp.’s chief executive officer, he invited several dozen vice presidents to breakfast and had a simple, calm admonition for them: “Can you step it up?”

The engineer’s tone was a departure from the yelling and wild gesticulations favored by his salesman predecessor Steve Ballmer and the razor-sharp interrogations of co-founder Bill Gates. Nadella’s approach underlines the low-key and analytical style he brings as CEO since starting the job in February, as he seeks to revamp the world’s largest software maker. Nadella has unveiled plans to cut more than 18,000 jobs, killed unpromising products and boosted sales of computing tools delivered via the Internet, while seeking to reduce the company’s reliance on software installed on personal computers.

good message to be sending from the top down… “step it up, mang!”

also, seems like some people are downright giddy about the new Windows 8 start menu.

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Lady Wins $23 Billion Lawsuit?!?

Widow: Jury sent tobacco company a $23B message

A Florida widow awarded $23.6 billion in the death of her chain-smoking husband on Monday called the massive verdict a message to Big Tobacco, even though she likely won’t see much if any of the money.

The punitive damages — $23,623,718,906.62, to be precise — almost certainly will be significantly reduced on appeal, if not thrown out entirely, legal experts and industry analysts said. In another major tobacco trial, a $28 billion verdict in a 2002 case in Los Angeles turned into $28 million after appeals.

The figure is a pointed, dramatic gesture, said Cynthia Robinson, whose husband took up smoking at 13 and died of lung cancer at 36.

dude, that’s just fucking insane.

some people might not like tobacco companies, i get it… but when did it become a court of justice’s job to “send a message” with something completely outrageous like this? did they force the guy to purchase the cigerettes with his own money, to smoke two packs a day? she was his wife, so does that make her an accessory?

i’m sure it’ll go to Appeals, and i hope they drop at least 9 zeros from that verdict…

$23 billion… geeeesh, what the fuck.

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Star Wars: Force for Change

J.J. Abrams Reveals the New X-Wing in Latest Star Wars Set Video

people were geek’n about this one all day today and i can’t really blame ‘em, since we’re all kind of starving for some new Star Wars foot’age — so yeah, cool to see the guy get into the tie-fighter behind JJ.

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Don’t Fear The Command Line

i never really used the command line all that much when i used to run Windows, but over the past year or two with OSX i find myself using it all the time… i love terminal, though i’m still not so gung-ho on using vi as my html/css editor of choice — Don’t Fear The Command Line

Diving into the command line will teach you a lot about how your computer works and organizes information. You might find that some tasks you perform every day with a mouse are actually faster when you type a command or two instead.

Most important, you’ll be better prepared to learn languages like Python and programs like Git that require some command-line setup. By getting familiar with the command line, you’ll break down barriers that may have kept you from learning to program in the past.

So here’s a quick, basic guide to getting around on the command line. It’s focused on Mac OS X’s Unix-based environment, simply because that’s what I’m familiar with. Linux users probably know the command line well already, although newcomers might also find these tips useful. If you’re running a Chromebook, Google has some helpful instructions for getting to its version of the command line, which is similar to Mac and Linux systems. Windows users, unfortunately, are stuck with a command language derived from MS-DOS that just barely overlaps with Unix, so this guide isn’t going to be much use to you; you might check out this dosprompt.info tutorial.

some good stuff in there, along with some link’age… i still feel like a terminal n00b, so even these “beginner” type articles are great to browse over and either remember something i’d forgotten all about or learn a new shortcut, etc.

Learn Fast with These 15 Apple Swift Tutorials
Access OS X’s Secret Terminal Hidden in the Login Screen

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Russian MH17 Conspiracy Theories

The Russian Public Has a Totally Different Understanding of What Happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 17

Did you know Malaysia Air Flight 17 was full of corpses when it took off from Amsterdam? Did you know that, for some darkly inexplicable reason, on July 17, MH17 moved off the standard flight path that it had taken every time before, and moved north, toward rebel-held areas outside Donetsk?

Or that the dispatchers summoned the plane lower just before the crash? Or that the plane had been recently reinsured? Or that the Ukrainian army has air defense systems in the area? Or that it was the result of the Ukrainian military mistaking MH17 for Putin’s presidential plane, which looks strangely similar?

Did you know that the crash of MH17 was all part of an American conspiracy to provoke a big war with Russia?

Well, it’s all true—at least if you live in Russia, because this is the Malaysia Airlines crash story that you’d be seeing.

heard something over the weekend about a TV news reporter over in russia quitting on the air, because she was so disgusted with what they were having her say… she said something about how the “news” over there was becoming more and more propaganda, was all state controlled, and was really pushing disinformation like crazy — what we’re hearing and what russians are hearing on the news are two completely different things, it would seem.

i like the one russian story about how the plane was mistaken as Putin’s presidential plane and shot down by ukranians… oh, and the one about how MH17 was full of corses when it flew out of amsterdam… geeeesh, nice one putin.

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IRS Hard Drives Destroyed?

IRS says hard drive that lost emails destroyed…

WASHINGTON (AP) — The IRS said Friday that Lois Lerner’s computer hard drive was destroyed three years ago, ending any chance of retrieving her lost emails.

In court papers, the IRS said the hard drive was destroyed after two sets of trained technicians tried to retrieve the data. The tax agency said it was standard procedure to destroy old data storage equipment that may have contained confidential taxpayer information.

The IRS says Lerner’s computer crashed in 2011, destroying an untold number of emails. At the time, Lerner headed the division that handles applications for tax-exempt status.

Lerner is a central figure in congressional investigations into the handling of applications by tea party and other conservative groups.

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen had told Congress that Lerner’s hard drive was recycled and presumably destroyed. Friday’s court filings confirmed it.

of course the hard drives with ALL of her emails were destroyed… how incredibly convienent.

everybody knows that their emails are all stored locally on your PC/Mac hard drive… and if your hard drive goes bad, that you’ll lose allllll of your emails — forever.

#blink

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Game of Thrones GFX

Game of Thrones, Season 4 – VFX making of reel

i just love seeing how some of the video effects where put together on the show… pretty incredible just how nicely done it is, and how you often have no idea if what you’re seeing in the show is real or generated grapics.

fucking awesome.

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Monday Music

Smells Like Teen Spirit – Hammond Organ Cover By Pleasure Beach

just thought it was an interesting version that i haven’t heard before… that, and for some reason the old school video foot’age cracked me up.

#nirvana

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Foo.Refresh()

that’s right ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to bring the sexy back!

it’s the one thing i’ve missed the most since porting my blog over from my old Coldfusion hand-coded blog (that served me pretty damn well for about a decade, which still trips me out) to wordpress — the ajaxed side-comments.

i’ve heard it over and over again these last few months, and never really gave up on trying to bring that back… there’s a few ajax comment plugins out there, but nothing really was exactly what i needed which kinda sucked… anwyho, here’s a quick theme i slapped together this past week, one that brings back the comments to side of the blog post — a format that i’ve been using for years now.

simple and clean.

 

special thanks
two big thumbs-up to my buddy, bradley, for his help on getting the ajax-comments working in WP… i gave it a stab, but was getting kinda frustrated, so i pinged him the other day and he jumped all over it… fucking awesome, i owe ya dude!

p.s. this one’s definitely a work in progress…

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Babe vs. Babe

well gang, it’s finally friday and a rough week it’s been — getting back into the groove of things at work after being off for a week was kinda brutal, the 24-hour hackathon yesterday into today, and having my site on the fritz for the past day or two has kinda sucked balls… anywho, i’m totally beat so here’s a quickie.

** don’t be douchebag, make a choice.

have a great weekend, mang!

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2014: Obama’s America

Scandals now come so fast that each new mess makes us forget the previous one.

The summer of 2014 will go down in history as the season when America fell apart. Let’s take a tour of the disasters.

Germany in 2008 enthusiastically hosted candidate Barack Obama for his so-called Victory Column speech. Now, Germans suddenly sound as if they are near-enemies of the U.S. Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly was furious that her cell phone was tapped by American intelligence agents. She just kicked the top CIA official out of Germany, further enraged that the U.S. had recruited at least one German official to provide intelligence on the German government. Polls show that Germans find Vladimir Putin’s Russian tyranny to be almost as popular as Barack Obama’s America.

Japan is becoming similarly frustrated with the U.S. It is rearming like crazy to confront an aggressive China. Both Asian powers apparently assume that Obama won’t guarantee the security of the Japanese as America has in the past.

The Middle East is dissolving. Taking U.S. peacekeepers out of Iraq proved a disaster. The radical jihadists of ISIS are overrunning Syria and Iraq, as they extend their destruction even to the mute stones of religious sanctuaries.

War looms between Israel and the Palestinians as they exchange rockets and bombs. Older Americans had an idea of what Afghanistan will look like by 2016 after Obama announced a pullout of all U.S. troops. They remember Saigon of 1975 all too well.

Crimea has become a Russian satellite. The fate of the Ukraine hangs in the balance. In between his conquests, Russia’s Putin openly ridicules the impotence of the U.S. He is often called to the Middle East on the perception that he can address problems that America runs away from.

From his sanctuary perch in Russia, National Security Agency turncoat Edward Snowden is once again releasing top-secret data that shreds the credibility of the Obama administration.

Foreign leaders don’t trust the U.S. They are baffled as to whether America is guilty of incompetence in hiring such a roguish dropout snoop in the first place, or guilty of cynically spying on America’s best friends — or both.

The economy shrank last quarter. Record numbers of adult Americans are still not working. Zero-interest rates have destroyed the tradition of passbook savings and the very idea of thrift.

No-interest financial policies ignited a stampede to the stock market that has further enriched the one-percenters — an artificial boom that everyone believes will soon bust.

The borrowing of $7 trillion has proved no stimulus. A natural American recovery was stymied by vast federal borrowing, by the addition of more incomprehensible regulations, and by an Obamacare package that proved to be the opposite of almost everything that was promised. Inflation is said to be manageable, but only by not counting soaring food, gas, and electricity costs that do the most to erode family budgets.

U.S. immigration law simply no longer exists. Incoming foreign nationals more likely welcome arrest than fear it. Tens of thousands of newly arrived immigrants expect that the cynical coalition of commercial interests, ethnic activists, and political operatives have subverted existing federal law. America is now wide open. Almost anyone can cross the border and receive subsidized sanctuary. If you object, you are a nativist, racist, or xenophobe — take your pick.

No one denies that top IRS officials lost or destroyed key documents concerning the agency’s election-time efforts to subvert conservative organizations. The unbiased IRS that we once knew has vanished. It has become an appendage of the ruling government that punishes enemies and rewards friends — and dodges a high-level audit by lying in the same fashion as the tax cheats it goes after.

Americans accept the fact that a video never had anything to do with the killing of four American officials in Benghazi and know that the Obama administration knew precisely that when it assured them otherwise.

No one has heard anything lately from Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, who was traded for five of the most dangerous jihadists the U.S. had in its custody. The less we know about why Bergdahl went AWOL, the administration thinks, the better.

The scandals now come so fast and furiously that we no sooner hear of one than yet another new mess makes us forget it.

What keeps the country afloat this terrible summer?

longer than usual, i know… but shit, i just didn’t know where to stop.

good stuff, victor.

p.s. the lastest from krauthammer: The Truth about Gaza

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