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More Russian Support for Putin’s Bitch

Russia is still supporting the Chumph…And seeking to create a Civil War within the US.

This is why CEOs quitting Putin’s Bitch’s “Cyber Security Commission.

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Russian Bots Are Trying to Sow Discord on Twitter After Charlottesville

Although the recent events in Charlottesville happened 5,000 miles from Moscow, Russia didn’t sit this one out. As has become almost routine after every polarizing U.S. political event in the past 12 months, online Russian propagandists quickly got involved. This time around, they took to Twitter with an army of bots to promote and share extremist right-wing tweets and disinformation.

The Alliance for Securing Democracy, a project of the German Marshall Fund that tracks efforts to undermine democratic governments, monitors a collection of 600 Twitter accounts that are known to be linked to Russian influence, including openly pro-Russian users, accounts that take part in Russian disinformation campaigns, and automated bot accounts that parrot Russian messaging. They found these accounts busy at work in the days after Charlottesville. “PhoenixRally,” “Antifa,” and “MAGA” were among the most common hashtags used by these accounts this week. One of the central themes shared by the Russian-linked accounts after Charlottesville was an accusation, propagated by both the Russian news agency Sputnik and American far-right media personality Alex Jones, that the left-leaning philanthropist George Soros had supported the counterprotesters.

One example of a likely bot was an account under the name Angee Dixson, opened on Aug. 8, the Tuesday before the Charlottesville rally started, as reported by ProPublica. Described in her Twitter bio as a conservative Christian, Angee sent about 90 tweets out a day, in which she vigorously defended President Trump’s response to the rally and shared pictures that allegedly showed violence on the part of counterprotesters in Charlottesville. The account has now been shut down.

“BUSTED! Craigslist Ad Exposes Firm Hiring #AltLeft “Protesters” for $25/Hr,” read one of Dixson’s tweets. That was one of five tweets she sent in one minute, according to the archive link of her account. All those tweets contained links that had been shortened using a URL shortener, which usually requires going to a separate website to enter the URL and generate a new link, and that takes time. The tremendous speed with which Dixson was able to send her tweets indicates that Angee Dixson was most likely an automated bot, not a real human. Even the account’s profile picture was stolen: ProPublica linked it to a photo of a model that at one point was rumored to have dated Leonardo DiCaprio. Though it’s hard to directly link any one bot to its source, “Angee’s” tweets were reported to use similar language from Russian government–backed outlets Sputnik and RT.

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The same Russian social media machine that blanketed Twitter with pro-Trump posts during the 2016 presidential election were reportedly at work after Charlottesville, too. Bots were weaponized during the presidential debates to give a false impression of a groundswell of grass-roots support for Trump. Bots sharing pro-Trump–related content outnumbered pro-Clinton bots by 7 to 1 during the third debate between the Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump, according to research from Oxford University’s Project on Computational Propaganda. In the timespan between the first and second debates, more than one-third of the pro-Trump tweets were found to came from automated bot accounts.

Bots also showed up in the days before this year’s French election, when the campaign of the winning candidate Emmanuel Macron reported it was the victim of a massive email hack. The documents spread like wildfire across Twitter, but it was soon reported that an overwhelming number of the tweets spreading news of the hack were from bots. About 40 percent of the tweets containing #MacronGate were found to be actually coming from only 5 percent of accounts using the hashtag. That tremendous amount of activity from such few accounts is usually a clear sign that humans aren’t the ones doing the tweeting. One account reportedly tweeted 1,668 times in 24 hours, or more than one tweet per minute with no sleep. Unless that account was manned by three people who don’t take bathroom breaks, that was probably a bot. Though, again, it’s incredibly difficult to tell how much of this bot traffic can be linked directly to Russia, but there is evidence that it was Russia was behind the Macron campaign hack. In April, the cybersecurity firm Trend Micro found that the same Russian government–linked hacking group behind the infiltration of the Democratic National Committee also targeted the Macron campaign with email phishing attempts and malware.

Bots are becoming a staple of social media as Western countries find themselves embroiled in polarized political debates. Trump’s Twitter followers, after all, are about 59 percent bots or fake accounts, according to TwitterAudit, a website that measures the authenticity of Twitter followers. All of which goes to show that retweets, likes, trending hashtags, and followers shouldn’t be taken as a strong indication of public opinion—and moreover, that virality is hardly a demonstration of genuineness.

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Did Republicans Sabotage Obamacare System?

Back during the late Bush and early Clinton Administrations I owned a Government consulting company which develop specialized software for a variety of systems and computer platforms. we developed systems either directly for Government Agencies or for Prime Contractors who had contracts with the Government.

Every President comes to Washington with a list of things to do. Many of those things can be implemented within the vast Federal Systems he directly controls without Congress’ approval through the passage of laws. Things like improving the system which take care of veterans, or the procedures to assist home buyers. In some cases improving how these programs work involves upgrading the computer systems which make them go.

when President Clinton came to town, Republicans had controlled the Federal apparatus for 12 years. The vast majority of the positions which are politically appointed were held by Republicans. There is a level under the appointed officeholders called the Senior Executive Service, which is not supposed to be political. It is made up of Senior professional managers who are the folks who really make things function in the Federal Government. They work under whoever is President and typically make careers out of Federal Service. Some of these people are promoted from careers within the Government. With the pay for these position tied to the commercial market, many come from the commercial industry side to work for the Government.

Historically, while the selection process for these jobs is blind, when Republicans hold power they try and recruit fellow Republicans to make the jump. Ditto for the Democrats. which during the GW Bush Administration opened the door to outright politicization of these jobs through manipulating, and outright breaking the system. This assured that many of those jobs were taken by Bush sycophants…

During the Clinton Administration I witnessed many of the Bush/Raygun holdovers working to throw a monkey wrench in many of Clinton’s signature programs.

Obama, trying to appear magnanimous refused to flugh he Bushit filled toilet when he gained office.

Anyone who has worked with computers knows that the technology is exacting. It really doesn’t take much to make a million lines of code useless. A program can fail because of one single line of code being in error. Google spent many years and millions of dollars to make their search engine be able to handle common misspellings. The engines before Google were literal. If you searched for cheeese, you got only those results with the same typo.

Suggesting the reason the Obamacare programs failed so badly…

Was an inside job.

It would be nice if our computer whizzes at the NSA took a look at that instead of spending all their time snooping on everyone’s telephone.

The Obamacare sabotage campaign

To the undisputed reasons for Obamacare’s rocky rollout — a balky website, muddied White House messaging and sudden sticker shock for individuals forced to buy more expensive health insurance — add a less acknowledged cause: calculated sabotage by Republicans at every step.

That may sound like a left-wing conspiracy theory — and the Obama administration itself is so busy defending the indefensible early failings of its signature program that it has barely tried to make this case. But there is a strong factual basis for such a charge.

From the moment the bill was introduced, Republican leaders in both houses of Congress announced their intention to kill it. Republican troops pressed this cause all the way to the Supreme Court — which upheld the law, but weakened a key part of it by giving states the option to reject an expansion of Medicaid. The GOP faithful then kept up their crusade past the president’s reelection, in a pattern of “massive resistance” not seen since the Southern states’ defiance of the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision in 1954.

The opposition was strategic from the start: Derail President Barack Obama’s biggest ambition, and derail Obama himself. Party leaders enforced discipline, withholding any support for the new law — which passed with only Democratic votes, thus undermining its acceptance. Partisan divisions also meant that Democrats could not pass legislation smoothing out some rough language in the draft bill that passed the Senate. That left the administration forced to fill far more gaps through regulation than it otherwise would have had to do, because attempts — usually routine — to re-open the bill for small changes could have led to wholesale debate in the Senate all over again.

But the bitter fight over passage was only the beginning of the war to stop Obamacare. Most Republican governors declined to create their own state insurance exchanges — an option inserted in the bill in the Senate to appeal to the classic conservative preference for local control — forcing the federal government to take at least partial responsibility for creating marketplaces serving 36 states — far more than ever intended.

Then congressional Republicans refused repeatedly to appropriate dedicated funds to do all that extra work, leaving the Health and Human Services Department and other agencies to cobble together HealthCare.gov by redirecting funds from existing programs. On top of that, nearly half of the states declined to expand their Medicaid programs using federal funds, as the law envisioned.

Then, in the months leading up to the program’s debut, some states refused to do anything at all to educate the public about the law. And congressional Republicans sent so many burdensome queries to local hospitals and nonprofits gearing up to help consumers navigate the new system face-to-face that at least two such groups returned their federal grants and gave up the effort. When the White House let it be known last summer that it was in talks with the National Football League to enlist star athletes to help promote the law, the Senate’s top two Republicans sent the league an ominous letter wondering why it would “risk damaging its inclusive and apolitical brand.” The NFL backed off.

The drama culminated on the eve of the open enrollment date of Oct. 1. Congressional Republicans shut down the government, disrupting last-minute planning and limiting the administration’s political ability to prepare the public for the likelihood of potential problems, because it was in a last-ditch fight to defend the president’s biggest legislative accomplishment.

“I think my Republican colleagues forget that a lot of people are enrolling through state exchanges, rather than the federal exchange,” Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) noted last week. “And if it wasn’t for the fact that many Republican governors, including my own,” failed to set up state exchanges, “then we wouldn’t be putting so much burden on the federal system.”

In fact, putting an excessive burden on the federal government was the explicit aim of the law’s opponents. “Congress authorized no funds for federal ‘fallback’ exchanges,” the Tea Party Patriots website noted as long ago as last December. “So Washington may not be able to impose exchanges on states at all.” The group went on to suggest that since Washington was not equipped to handle so many state exchanges, “both financially and otherwise — this means the entire law could implode on itself.” …more

 

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GOP Working to Tank the Economy To Defeat Obama

Republicans trying to tank the economy…


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