Day: July 5, 2017

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IS THIS AMELIA? New photo may reveal she was captured by Japanese


The disappearance of Amelia Earhart is one of the great unsolved mysteries, although a recently-discovered photo is being touted as a vital clue to the aviation pioneer’s fate.

Earhart, who was attempting to fly around the world, disappeared on July 2, 1937 during a flight from Papua New Guinea to Howland Island in the Pacific. Researchers claim that new evidence from U.S. Government archives may finally solve the mystery of what happened to the record-breaking pilot.

A two-hour documentary “Amelia Earhart: The Lost Evidence” will reveal the documents when it airs on the History channel July 9.  Investigators will present the theory that Earhart survived her final flight after crash-landing in the Marshall Islands. The aviator, they say, was then captured by the Japanese military and died in their custody on the island of Saipan. The investigators also claim that the U.S. government may have covered up Earhart’s fate, citing the possibility that she was on a spying mission.

NEW SEARCH WILL LOOK FOR AMELIA EARHART’S BONES

The Japanese government has not yet responded to a request for comment on this story from Fox News.

A photograph, which purportedly shows Earhart, her navigator Fred Noonan and their ill-fated plane after the crash, is presented as a critical piece of evidence in the documentary. The photo was found within the U.S. National Archives by Les Kinney, a former U.S. Treasury Agent. “The photograph came out of a Navy file, a formerly top secret file in the National Archives,” says Kinney, during the documentary. “It was misfiled and that was the only reason I found it.”

The photo of a group of people on a Marshall Islands dock shows Earhart sitting with her back to the camera, according to Kinney. “Look at the body, the build, the short hair, the fact that she’s Caucasian,” he explained, adding that the tall man on the left of the group is Noonan.

NEW EVIDENCE REPORTEDLY INDICATES AMELIA EARHART SURVIVED CRASH

Earhart’s plane is said to be on a barge in the far right of the picture, which was tested with recognition and proportional comparison technology.

The documentary also focuses on plane parts found on Mili Atoll in the Marshall Islands that are said to be consistent with the aircraft Earhart was flying in 1937.

However, Dorothy Cochrane, curator in the Aeronautics department of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum told Fox News there is no evidence that Earhart was sent out on a spying mission. Cochrane, who has not yet seen the new documentary says that unravelling the Earhart mystery remains incredibly difficult. “There’s no definite evidence that anyone has got as to where she ended up,” she said.

The first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, Earhart was one of the most famous people at the time of her disappearance. A number of theories have emerged about her fate.

AMELIA EARHART’S PLANE DISCOVERED … IN OLD MOVIE

One theory is that Earhart died a castaway after landing her plane on the remote island of Nikumaroro, a coral atoll some 1,200 miles from the Marshall Islands.  Some 13 human bones were found on Nikumaroro, which is also known as Gardner Island, three years after Earhart’s disappearance. The bones, however, were subsequently lost.  A new search for other bones on the island was recently launched.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

 



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ALASKA, HAWAII ON EDGE Pols call for better defense after N. Korea ICBM test


Lawmakers in Alaska and Hawaii are doubling down on calls for improved U.S. defenses after North Korea test-fired an intercontinental ballistic missile that experts say could hit Alaska. 

Tuesday’s ICBM launch was North Korea’s most successful yet, spurring an emergency U.N. Security Council session on Wednesday where U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley pushed for diplomatic solutions. 

She warned the U.S. reserves the right to use military force. 

“One of our capabilities lies with our military forces, and we will use them, but we prefer not to have to go in that direction,” Haley said Wednesday. “North Korea’s launch of an ICBM is a clear and sharp military escalation.”

U.S. VOWS IT WILL ‘NEVER ACCEPT A NUCLEAR NORTH KOREA’ AFTER NEW MISSILE TEST

As officials debated in New York over what the international response should be, the states closest to Pyongyang’s weapons appealed for action in Washington. 

“Today, Alaskans awoke to disturbing news that North Korea tested a missile that some experts say may be able to reach Alaska in the near future,” Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, said on Tuesday. “Now more than ever, it’s imperative for Alaskans and the rest of the nation that we be prepared.”

Sullivan, along with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, and other senators, introduced bipartisan legislation in May that would improve capability and capacity of U.S. homeland missile defense in response to North Korean aggression.

“This bill will help improve our ability to defend Hawaii, Alaska, and the U.S. mainland against a North Korean ballistic missile threat,” Schatz said when the bill was introduced.

The bulk of the bill was included in the fiscal 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, which passed out of a Senate committee last week.

“I’ve been saying for months that it’s no longer ‘if’ but ‘when’ Kim Jong-Un will get the ability to strike U.S. cities with a nuclear missile,” Sullivan said last week, just days before the successful ICBM launch. 

The Pentagon has a total of 36 missile interceptors in underground silos on military bases in Alaska and California, and is expected to increase that to 44 by the end of the year.

The bill would incorporate an additional 28 ground-based interceptors, 14 of which would be located in Alaska. An interceptor moves towards its target based on tracking data, and is assumed to destroy the target by force of impact to neutralize its nuclear explosive power; it could be launched if given notice of a missile headed towards the U.S.

“We’ve still not seen a number of things that would indicate a full-up threat,” Pentagon Spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said on Wednesday. “But clearly they are working on it. Clearly they seek to do it.” 

Hawaii officials earlier this year already had called for updating their state emergency plans by repairing and restocking Cold War-era fallout shelters. 

U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, told Fox News on Wednesday that the U.S. must pursue “serious diplomatic efforts” to denuclearize North Korea. 

“For the past fifteen years, our leaders have let the people of Hawaii and our country down, allowing the situation in North Korea to worsen to this point of crisis where we are left with nothing but bad options,” Gabbard told Fox News in a written statement. “As long as the U.S. is waging regime change wars, we are far less likely to reach a diplomatic solution in North Korea because they have no reason to believe our promises.” 

But even as she criticized the administration’s approach, she stressed the need to “defend against North Korea’s threat with cutting-edge missile defense technologies” as part of the response. 

U.S. WATCHED NORTH KOREA PREPARE FOR ICBM LAUNCH

According to one U.S. scientist, the missile North Korea just launched could hit the U.S. if positioned at a “standard launch angle.” 

“This missile just proved it could travel around 4,100 miles—meaning it could hit all of Alaska,” Professor Bruce Bechtol of Angelo State University in Texas, who has years of experience monitoring North Korea, told Fox News in an email.

Fox News’ James Rosen and The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

Brooke Singman is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @brookefoxnews.



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Can Ted Cruz's plan save ObamaCare repeal?


A low-flying proposal from Sen. Ted Cruz to overhaul a major component of ObamaCare is attracting the kind of conservative enthusiasm that could prove critical in the broader GOP push to repeal and replace the 2010 law. 

The Texas Republican senator has offered up his idea as an amendment that would allow insurers to offer bare-boned policies that don’t meet Affordable Care Act standards — provided they also offer plans in compliance. 

Whether the Tea Party-backed senator’s gambit will help bring an overhaul bill to President Trump’s desk remains uncertain, considering the proposed change could drive away GOP moderates. Leaders of the Republican-controlled Senate are trying to strike just the right balance between moderate and conservative interests after having adjourned for the July 4 recess with no deal in hand that could attract the minimum 50 senators needed. 

The Cruz plan aims to roll back the requirements that boost coverage for individual plans but also increase cost. 

“The mandates the federal government puts on [Americans] are so ridiculous that men are forced to carry coverage for mammograms, women are forced to carry coverage for prostate issues. It’s absurd,” Marc Short, Trump’s director of legislative affairs, told “Fox News Sunday.” “We’re going to get rid of many of those regulations and mandates to lower cost.”

The Cruz amendment is intended to lower consumer costs and presumably help commercial insurance companies continue offering policies. 

Several insurers have moved to pull out of various state-based ObamaCare exchanges in recent weeks, as lawmakers deliberate. Aetna recently announced it would leave the Virginia exchange after losing nearly $700 million over roughly the first three years.

“We’ve got to do something to reinject free market forces into this environment,” Utah GOP Sen. Mike Lee, who joined Cruz in drafting the Consumer Freedom Act, told CBS on Sunday. “If we can bring free market forces to bear, we can bring down cost for middle Americans.”

The Cruz plan was submitted last week for analysis to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, which is expected to complete its report when the Senate and House return next week from their July recess.

Cruz, Lee and Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul are among a handful of conservative GOP senators who did not support the original Senate health bill.

In May, the GOP-controlled House passed its ObamaCare overhaul — but not without its own share of support-wrangling from the conference’s conservative and moderate wings.

No House Democrat voted for the measure. And no Senate Democrat is supporting their chamber’s plan, which means Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will need support from 50 of his 52 senators.

“If the Cruz consumer choice amendment gets there, yes I can support it,” North Carolina GOP Rep. Mark Meadows, leader of his chamber’s ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus, told reporters last week.

Prior to the Cruz plan, Meadows expressed doubt that the Senate overhaul bill — criticized for having hundreds of millions in insurance “bailouts” — could gain enough House support. 

To bring House conservatives and moderates together to pass the chamber’s bill, Meadows and his caucus of about 30 members agreed to a compromise measure by New Jersey GOP Rep. Tom MacArthur that would give states the ability to opt out of some core ObamaCare insurance requirements. 

The Cruz plan appears to have another hurdle — whether it can yield enough cost savings to make it attractive to Republicans. 

“These are the types of reforms that would help roll back the damage inflicted by Obamacare,” Michael Needham, leader of the conservative group Heritage Action for America, recently told The Hill newspaper.  “Simply throwing more money at the problem as some moderates are seeking to do is not an enduring solution.”



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Pool float's design raises questions


People have a lot of questions about a pool float being sold by retailers across the country.

Questions like, “Was one single woman consulted about this?”

Sam’s Club advertises the Aquaria Pasadena Pool Float as having “a fun marbleized design.”

But just about everyone else seems to think it looks like a giant panty liner.

“The Aquaria Pasadena pool float has got the same shape as a pad. It’s light blue, just like the fake period blood everyone uses in adverts for tampons. It’s quilted for your comfort,” a reporter for Metro wrote.

The comments on Twitter are enough to pull anyone out of a cranky mood.

“What’s the absorbency level on this thing?” @fanmomaf asked.

“If you don’t want to lose this on the pool deck, just pull off the adhesive strip on the back and attach it to your chair!” @bmmcgar suggested.

“I’ll wear my red swimsuit to complete the cosplay,” @wordblender wrote.

“Has someone made the surfing the crimson wave joke yet?” @elephantista asked.

“I suppose the Management just went with the flow,” @val_kudirka joked.

“Alternative theory – it was designed by a woman who was sick of the men in her family stealing all the pool float,” @verysimple responded.

The Pasadena Pool Float has been around for at least a few years, but we’re not really surprised that we haven’t seen any being used in real life.

In addition to the conversation-sparking design, they’re also pretty expensive. We found prices ranging from $79 to $109 at Amazon, Sam’s Club and Sears.

Click for more from Fox 31.



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'WAR ON COPS' Police officer deaths on duty jump nearly 20%


The ambush shooting that killed a New York City police officer in the Bronx marked the latest in a growing number of officer deaths in 2017, up 18 percent from this time last year.

A total of 67 officers have died so far this year, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. It found there were 57 officer deaths between January 1 and July 5, 2016. In addition, gun-related deaths have risen by 9 percent, from 22 to 24 for 2017, the researchers say.

The figures suggest a grim trend; 2016 was the deadliest year for police in 5 years. A total of 135 officers died last year.

New York Police Department Officer Miosotis Familia was “assassinated” during an “unprovoked attack,” according to NYPD commissioner James O’Neill. Familia was sitting in her marked vehicle early Wednesday when a man shot at her through the window. 

Randy Sutton, national spokesman for Blue Lives Matter and a retired Las Vegas police lieutenant, said that Familia’s killing is a symptom of the growing violence against law enforcement.

NEW YORK CITY COP ‘ASSASSINATED’ IN THE BRONX

“People now are more willing to engage the police in combat,” Sutton told Fox News. “Last year approximately 50,000 law enforcement officers were assaulted, that ran the gamut from pushing them to shooting them and causing disabling injuries.”

“Part of the war on cops [is] the failure of police leadership to step up to the place and not acquiesce to political considerations when it comes to the safety of police officers,” Sutton said. “The other part of the war on cops is the failure of the media to post anything positive about police. All they do is put up damaging stories and spin much of that into a narrative that is false and perpetuates a distorted narrative.”

Familia is the seventh New York Police Officer to die this year, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page. Its founder, Chris Cosgriff, said: “When a police officer is killed, it’s not an agency that loses an officer, it’s an entire nation.”

Both the ODMP and NLEOMF track officer deaths and report on trends and increases or decreases in types of officer fatalities over the years.

“It’s really hard to put a finger on any specific cause,” ODMP Research Director Steve Weiss told Fox News. Weiss said the numbers fluctuate, and “go up and down year to year.”

However, “In 1997 at this time, 33 officers had been killed,” Weiss said. “There’s been a steady decrease over the years and I imagine a lot of that has to do with beter technology, better training.”

Weiss added, “The goal is to get deaths per year under 100.” 

The ODMP also offers resources to help prevent officer fatalities. Weiss described the “No Parole for Cop Killers” program which notifies people when a cop killer is up for parol, their partnership with the Armor of God project, which “provides bullet resistant vests to members of all organizations who are not able to receive them” and a partnership that creates officer awareness posters, and reminds officers to wear their seatbelts and bulletproof vests. 

BRONX SHOOTING: SAN ANTONIO POLICE CHIEF SAYS ATTACKS AGAINST COPS ‘ALL TOO COMMON’

Also killed on July 4 this year was Police Officer Robert Johnson, of the Northville Police Department in New York. Johnson was struck by a vehicle and killed while driving home after he had gotten off duty. He noticed a crash between a deer and a vehicle and retrieved his service weapon and approached the scene. While walking down the shoulder to dispatch the deer he was struck by a second vehicle. 

OFFICER FATALITIES GROW AS MONTANA DEPUTY IS KILLED ON DUTY

Johnson is one of hundreds of officers listed on the ODMP site. Weiss said, “The organization was started as a way to memoralize officers and raise public awareness of the number of officers that were killed each year.”

He added, “People don’t understand the sacrifices officers make. There are not too many professions where people are murdered while doing their job and this is one profession where people are killed somewhat routinely in performing their job.”

Memorializing the fallen officers “gives family members a place to come to remember their loved ones,” Weiss said.

Fox News’ Elizabeth Llorente contributed to this report.  



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Wayans defends 'racist' tweet


Damon Wayans Jr. found himself in hot water after he tweeted, “Happy white people proud of their racist ancestors day” on July 4.

The actor’s tweet angered many fans, and forced the star to defend himself with a follow-up tweet saying, “Jokes aren’t illegal.”

“A joke some took too personally. So what,” he added.

Despite Wayans’ clarification, many people found his tweet “offensive and hateful.”

He had to further clarify his tweet after a growing list of critics called him out on Twitter.

“Yep, it was a joke,” the actor wrote. “But feel free to be offended by it. ;).”

A rep for the Wayans did not return Fox News’ request for comment.



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CNN has fallen into Trump’s pro-wrestling trap and it can’t get up


The media swells outraged at President Trump’s CNN wrestling tweet do not understand the level at which he communicates to his base, primarily out of their disdain for vulgar mass culture, including reality television and pro wrestling.  (Remember that the root of the word “vulgar” is the Latin “vulgus” or “common people.”)  The president, by contrast, is one of the most successful impresarios (and stars) in the history of American mass culture. Celebrity Apprentice was the most successful reality TV program in the history of the American medium.

President Trump knows how to reach the great mass of the public using images, music, and words, while those who disdain him primarily operate on the level of discourse they consider far superior: an appeal to intellect. Now, as somebody who went to the trouble of acquiring three graduate degrees and teaching at a couple of Ivy League universities, I can make a plausible claim to value intellectual discourse as much as anyone. And I do.  But I don’t kid myself that this is the only meaningful level of communication – in politics, art, human relations, or anywhere else.

The visceral reactions to the wrestling takedown by Trump of a character with a CNN logo photoshopped on his head backfired immediately, as the first stage of the trap sprung.  The primary outrage was that this could incite violence against journalists, which is laughable considering that most of the media establishment shrugged off the Kathy Griffin ISIS-style beheading photo as a harmless exercise of the First Amendment.  President Trump, the impresario, understands the potency of an image such as this:

He knows that these memories do not completely fade. Don’t forget that he is also in the branding business, and understands the nature of keeping images and associations alive on a continuing basis.  The comparison with his own cartoonish image takes place subconsciously even if not in the front of mind:

Griffin is part of the CNN brand, even though they fired her from her New Year’s Eve gig, an iconic annual event, thereby affecting CNN’s brand.  It was her highest profile engagement, a major part of her brand, too.  So CNN’s outrage over violence just makes them look ridiculous, even though they did fire Griffin after waiting a day to gauge public reaction.

I wonder how many of the media Trump haters ever attended a pro wrestling match? I therefore wonder if they understand the mentality of Americans who happen to enjoy pro wrestling? My guess is that few among them have either first-hand experience or the interest in knowing anything about the subject. They probably are a little ashamed of their country for supporting such a loutish and obviously phony spectacle that has the potential of stirring up the undesirables and deplorables. The critics of Trump for inciting violence certainly didn’t know at first that the man who was taken down by Trump was Vince McMahon, the owner of WWE, indicating the obvious comic and friendly nature of the stunt.

As a teenager in Minneapolis in the early 1960s, back when local television stations broadcast live pro-wrestling matches, my pals and I would bicycle down to a local station that offered free tickets for a studio audience on its Saturday Night Wrestling show. Quite often, since it was free and something to do on a Saturday night. We were a bunch of cheeky smart alecks there to laugh at them. But we quickly got it that the rest of the audience and the wrestlers themselves got it, too.  Everything was taking place with a giant wink.

And that gave us permission to act out our parts in the drama with enthusiasm, screaming at the designated villain, jumping up and threatening to run at the ring to attack. All play, mimicking terrible tantrums, but permitted because it was a wink and a nod. It was kind of therapeutic, this permission to act out primitive urges in public, I guess. But it was also making fun of the people that made fun of wrestling fans.

And CNN – despite being in the entertainment business — understands none of this. They have just, in fact, stepped even deeper into the trap Trump baited with the video. Piecing together accounts from CNN, HuffPost, Vox, the New York Daily News, and Sundance of Conservative Treehouse, once the White House tweeted the video, a person who posts under the pseudonym “HanA**holeSolo” on Reddit identified the account as the source of the photshopping of the CNN image. It was actually a gif moving image, posted last Wednesday, that superimposed the CNN logo on Vince McMahon’s body. (The White House has issued a denial that Reddit was source.) But once HanA**Hole identified himself, his post on Redddit was noticed and publicized on Twitter by journalist Jared Yates Sexton:

 

 

It turns out that he is a troll who has published a lot of nasty racist, antisemitic stuff, and therefore President Trump must endorse everything he ever wrote because he used a video (not a gif, by the way) that may have originated from HanA**holeSolo. I gather that is the line of reasoning being employed by the sophisticated intellectuals outraged at Trump.

Once CNN got wind of the story, it writes that:

…CNN’s KFile identified the man behind “HanA**holeSolo.” Using identifying information that “HanA**holeSolo” posted on Reddit, KFile was able to determine key biographical details, to find the man’s name using a Facebook search and ultimately corroborate details he had made available on Reddit.


On Monday, KFile attempted to contact the man by email and phone but he did not respond. 

Gee, I wonder what they said to him?

They don’t offer us a clue, other than to report that the man behind Han A**holeSolo suddenly changed and offered the type of fulsome apology (full text at the end of this article) practiced by captives of the North Koreans while blinking out S.O.S. in Morse Code.

Now what do you suppose sparked this sudden burst of conscience?

Of you guessed blackmail, then you are following the same logic as Sundance:

In an article identifying the originating source of the wrestling gif tweeted last week by President Donald Trump, CNN says they’ll keep his name private so long as the person remains compliant to the media thought police.


The direct threat is: “CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.”



Bingo!

It seems to me that a few days ago President Trump was accused of blackmailing MSNBC’s Joe and Mika. Now CNN has outed itself for currently blackmailing a private citizen with exposure unless he complies with their demands.  

The drama being played out to people who understand pro wrestling is clear. CNN has cast itself as the villainous wrestler in the match, its hypocrisy and duplicity making the case so convincingly that it doesn’t even need a mask or outrageous costume to mark its role in the drama.

And they still don’t get it.

 

HanA**hole’s apology (via CNN):

On Tuesday, “HanA**holeSolo” posted his apology on the subreddit /The_Donald and deleted all of his other posts.


“First of all, I would like to apologize to the members of the reddit community for getting this site and this sub embroiled in a controversy that should never have happened,” he wrote. “I would also like to apologize for the posts made that were racist, bigoted, and anti-semitic. I am in no way this kind of person, I love and accept people of all walks of life and have done so for my entire life. I am not the person that the media portrays me to be in real life, I was trolling and posting things to get a reaction from the subs on reddit and never meant any of the hateful things I said in those posts. I would never support any kind of violence or actions against others simply for what they believe in, their religion, or the lifestyle they choose to have. Nor would I carry out any violence against anyone based upon that or support anyone who did.”


The user further apologized for calls for violence against the press in his statement on Reddit.


“The meme was created purely as satire, it was not meant to be a call to violence against CNN or any other news affiliation,” he wrote. “I had no idea anyone would take it and put sound to it and then have it put up on the President’s Twitter feed. It was a prank, nothing more. What the President’s feed showed was not the original post that was posted here, but loaded up somewhere else and sound added to it then sent out on Twitter. I thought it was the original post that was made and that is why I took credit for it. I have the highest respect for the journalist community and they put their lives on the line every day with the jobs that they do in reporting the news.”

The media swells outraged at President Trump’s CNN wrestling tweet do not understand the level at which he communicates to his base, primarily out of their disdain for vulgar mass culture, including reality television and pro wrestling.  (Remember that the root of the word “vulgar” is the Latin “vulgus” or “common people.”)  The president, by contrast, is one of the most successful impresarios (and stars) in the history of American mass culture. Celebrity Apprentice was the most successful reality TV program in the history of the American medium.

President Trump knows how to reach the great mass of the public using images, music, and words, while those who disdain him primarily operate on the level of discourse they consider far superior: an appeal to intellect. Now, as somebody who went to the trouble of acquiring three graduate degrees and teaching at a couple of Ivy League universities, I can make a plausible claim to value intellectual discourse as much as anyone. And I do.  But I don’t kid myself that this is the only meaningful level of communication – in politics, art, human relations, or anywhere else.

The visceral reactions to the wrestling takedown by Trump of a character with a CNN logo photoshopped on his head backfired immediately, as the first stage of the trap sprung.  The primary outrage was that this could incite violence against journalists, which is laughable considering that most of the media establishment shrugged off the Kathy Griffin ISIS-style beheading photo as a harmless exercise of the First Amendment.  President Trump, the impresario, understands the potency of an image such as this:

He knows that these memories do not completely fade. Don’t forget that he is also in the branding business, and understands the nature of keeping images and associations alive on a continuing basis.  The comparison with his own cartoonish image takes place subconsciously even if not in the front of mind:

Griffin is part of the CNN brand, even though they fired her from her New Year’s Eve gig, an iconic annual event, thereby affecting CNN’s brand.  It was her highest profile engagement, a major part of her brand, too.  So CNN’s outrage over violence just makes them look ridiculous, even though they did fire Griffin after waiting a day to gauge public reaction.

I wonder how many of the media Trump haters ever attended a pro wrestling match? I therefore wonder if they understand the mentality of Americans who happen to enjoy pro wrestling? My guess is that few among them have either first-hand experience or the interest in knowing anything about the subject. They probably are a little ashamed of their country for supporting such a loutish and obviously phony spectacle that has the potential of stirring up the undesirables and deplorables. The critics of Trump for inciting violence certainly didn’t know at first that the man who was taken down by Trump was Vince McMahon, the owner of WWE, indicating the obvious comic and friendly nature of the stunt.

As a teenager in Minneapolis in the early 1960s, back when local television stations broadcast live pro-wrestling matches, my pals and I would bicycle down to a local station that offered free tickets for a studio audience on its Saturday Night Wrestling show. Quite often, since it was free and something to do on a Saturday night. We were a bunch of cheeky smart alecks there to laugh at them. But we quickly got it that the rest of the audience and the wrestlers themselves got it, too.  Everything was taking place with a giant wink.

And that gave us permission to act out our parts in the drama with enthusiasm, screaming at the designated villain, jumping up and threatening to run at the ring to attack. All play, mimicking terrible tantrums, but permitted because it was a wink and a nod. It was kind of therapeutic, this permission to act out primitive urges in public, I guess. But it was also making fun of the people that made fun of wrestling fans.

And CNN – despite being in the entertainment business — understands none of this. They have just, in fact, stepped even deeper into the trap Trump baited with the video. Piecing together accounts from CNN, HuffPost, Vox, the New York Daily News, and Sundance of Conservative Treehouse, once the White House tweeted the video, a person who posts under the pseudonym “HanA**holeSolo” on Reddit identified the account as the source of the photshopping of the CNN image. It was actually a gif moving image, posted last Wednesday, that superimposed the CNN logo on Vince McMahon’s body. (The White House has issued a denial that Reddit was source.) But once HanA**Hole identified himself, his post on Redddit was noticed and publicized on Twitter by journalist Jared Yates Sexton:

 

 

It turns out that he is a troll who has published a lot of nasty racist, antisemitic stuff, and therefore President Trump must endorse everything he ever wrote because he used a video (not a gif, by the way) that may have originated from HanA**holeSolo. I gather that is the line of reasoning being employed by the sophisticated intellectuals outraged at Trump.

Once CNN got wind of the story, it writes that:

…CNN’s KFile identified the man behind “HanA**holeSolo.” Using identifying information that “HanA**holeSolo” posted on Reddit, KFile was able to determine key biographical details, to find the man’s name using a Facebook search and ultimately corroborate details he had made available on Reddit.


On Monday, KFile attempted to contact the man by email and phone but he did not respond. 

Gee, I wonder what they said to him?

They don’t offer us a clue, other than to report that the man behind Han A**holeSolo suddenly changed and offered the type of fulsome apology (full text at the end of this article) practiced by captives of the North Koreans while blinking out S.O.S. in Morse Code.

Now what do you suppose sparked this sudden burst of conscience?

Of you guessed blackmail, then you are following the same logic as Sundance:

In an article identifying the originating source of the wrestling gif tweeted last week by President Donald Trump, CNN says they’ll keep his name private so long as the person remains compliant to the media thought police.


The direct threat is: “CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.”



Bingo!

It seems to me that a few days ago President Trump was accused of blackmailing MSNBC’s Joe and Mika. Now CNN has outed itself for currently blackmailing a private citizen with exposure unless he complies with their demands.  

The drama being played out to people who understand pro wrestling is clear. CNN has cast itself as the villainous wrestler in the match, its hypocrisy and duplicity making the case so convincingly that it doesn’t even need a mask or outrageous costume to mark its role in the drama.

And they still don’t get it.

 

HanA**hole’s apology (via CNN):

On Tuesday, “HanA**holeSolo” posted his apology on the subreddit /The_Donald and deleted all of his other posts.


“First of all, I would like to apologize to the members of the reddit community for getting this site and this sub embroiled in a controversy that should never have happened,” he wrote. “I would also like to apologize for the posts made that were racist, bigoted, and anti-semitic. I am in no way this kind of person, I love and accept people of all walks of life and have done so for my entire life. I am not the person that the media portrays me to be in real life, I was trolling and posting things to get a reaction from the subs on reddit and never meant any of the hateful things I said in those posts. I would never support any kind of violence or actions against others simply for what they believe in, their religion, or the lifestyle they choose to have. Nor would I carry out any violence against anyone based upon that or support anyone who did.”


The user further apologized for calls for violence against the press in his statement on Reddit.


“The meme was created purely as satire, it was not meant to be a call to violence against CNN or any other news affiliation,” he wrote. “I had no idea anyone would take it and put sound to it and then have it put up on the President’s Twitter feed. It was a prank, nothing more. What the President’s feed showed was not the original post that was posted here, but loaded up somewhere else and sound added to it then sent out on Twitter. I thought it was the original post that was made and that is why I took credit for it. I have the highest respect for the journalist community and they put their lives on the line every day with the jobs that they do in reporting the news.”



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Christie sand sculpture pokes fun at NJ governor – Vittert challenges Christie spox on gov's controversial beach trip


Artists in New Jersey used the sun and sand to express their anger toward Gov. Chris Christie after he enjoyed time on a beach that he closed during a state shutdown during the holiday weekend.

The group of artists at Seaside Heights raised a larger-than-life sand sculpture of the governor, showing him leaning back in a chair while wearing shorts and a baseball cap, NJ.com reported.

A plaque at the sculpture’s feet read “IBSP” for Island Beach State Park, where Christie was caught Sunday taking in the rays with his family at a beach house reserved for the state’s governor.

CHRISTIE PIC FUROR IS JUST THE BEGINNING: STATES ENTER SUMMER OF BUDGET PAIN

When asked about the photos on Sunday, Christie spokesman said: “Yes, the governor was on the beach briefly today talking to his wife and family before heading into the office. He did not get any sun. He had a baseball hat on.”

During the Independence Day holiday weekend the rest of the state was barred from entering the park – or any other – after the state legislature failed to pass a budget by the June 30 deadline. The shutdown caused non-essential state services to close.

The state shutdown ended slightly after midnight Tuesday when Christie signed the budget, NJ.com reported. State-run recreation site were open for Fourth of July.

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The sculpture at Seaside Heights were not the only way New Jerseyans poked fun at Christie, who many consider to be the least popular in the state’s history.

A banner ad urging Christie to “Get The Hell Off Island Beach State Park” flew over the Jersey Show on Monday — apparently referencing the governor’s famous demands that people “get the hell off the beach” as Hurricane Irene approached in 2011.



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Mother, infant seriously injured in fireworks incident


A mother and her newborn baby were seriously injured over the weekend after a faulty firework struck the two at a party in eastern Iowa.  

Margaret Limkemann, 36, suffered “severe trauma” to both of her legs after a firework unexpectedly landed in her lap and exploded on Saturday at an annual family event, according to a GoFundMe page. Once the firework hit Limkemann, she tossed her 1-month-old infant onto a nearby blanket, the fundraising page states.

Aria, the daughter, suffered a broken femur, multiple fractures and burns, according to the GoFundMe page. Both mother and daughter will require surgeries.

Brittany Bornstein, who started the online fundraising page, told the Gazette that the incident occurred on her grandfather’s property in Swisher, Iowa. She said the family was sitting approximately 50 yards away from the fireworks and alleged that the firework that landed on Limkemann was defective.

FIRE BREAKS OUT AT ARIZONA FIREWORKS SHOW

The owner of the property was cited for failure to have a firework permit. Failure to obtain proper permits could result in a simple misdemeanor with a penalty between $65 and $625 and a maximum of 30 days in jail, according to the Gazette.

“It’s both sad and frustrating that happened,” Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek told the Press-Citizen. “That’s why we cited the homeowner for failing to have a permit.”

Pulkrabek predicted that the county is “likely to have many more significant incidents like this with people not following” local ordinances.

EXPLOSION LEVELS MISSOURI HOME ON JULY 4TH

Most cities in Johnson County prohibit the personal use of consumer fireworks even though the state legislature approved this year the sale of fireworks in Iowa, the Press-Citizen reported.

The GoFundMe page has raised more than $6,700. 



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Beware Delaware-size iceberg


Hurry up and read this, before it’s too late.

The Larsen C ice shelf is seconds/minutes/hours/days away from breaking off from Antarctica. When it does — if it hasn’t by the time you’ve finished reading this — it will become one of the largest icebergs on record.

Scientists have been monitoring the crack in the ice shelf for two years, since they first observed that it was growing at a significant rate. As of January, it was 111 miles long and tearing away from the mainland at a rapidly growing rate.

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The crack grew by 11 miles last month alone, leaving only eight miles remaining. On July 5, it had grown another five miles, according to the European Space Agency, whose CryoSat satellite has been monitoring the ice shelf’s collapse.

Three more miles and the now-125-mile crack will reach the ocean. When it does, it will separate from the continent and become an iceberg of historic proportions.

“Using information from CryoSat, we have mapped the elevation of the ice above the ocean and worked out that the eventual iceberg will be about 190 meters (623 feet) thick and contain about 1155 cubic kilometers (277 cubic miles) of ice,” said Noel Gourmelen of the University of Edinburgh.

LIGHTNING IS MORE POWERFUL OVER OCEANS

“We have also estimated that the depth below sea level could be as much as 210 meters (656 feet).”

Scientists say the iceberg will be titanic — roughly the size of Delaware — and could melt at a rapid rate, causing sea levels to rise. Its location could also pose a hazard to maritime traffic.

“[W]e are not sure what will happen,” said Anna Hogg of the University of Leeds. “It could, in fact, even calve in pieces or break up shortly after. Whole or in pieces, ocean currents could drag it north, even as far as the Falkland Islands. If so it could pose a hazard for ships in Drake Passage.”



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