The 5 Times Snopes Played Fast And Loose With the Truth [#politics]

Snopes as a tool for the lazy anti-intellectuals
Once upon a time, Snopes was a great site that taught critical thinking and how to spot scams and Urban Legends. Now it is for lazy political hacks to counter your argument with “Nuh-uh!”

What used to be the premium site for fact-checking has become a tool for Partisan Politics

This kills me to write.

For 20+ years I was one of Snopes’ biggest defenders.
This website taught me how to read the news, urban legends, and rumors and think critically. Before Snopes, I truly believed kids died of pop rocks and soda; Elvis was a racist; Flipping on your high beams was a recipe for death from gang initiates. For the longest time, they seemed impartial and many on the Right-wing hated them because they were bitter that their BS was called out.

But now? I am beginning to believe they think life and politics hold only one perspective and anything else was “Fake News” and a possible Russian plot to make Trump GodEmperor4Lyfe. In fact, they have declared war on satire sites because they feel it’s important everyone embraces one ideology (or they think everyone is just *THAT* stupid).

So here are the following examples I have noticed where people posted a Snopes link in my Facebook comments to imply something I posted was “Fake News,” when, in fact, it wasn’t.

1) Were an American Couple Killed by Isis While Trying to ‘Prove Humans Are Kind’?

“There is no evidence Austin and Geoghegan were aware of any terrorist threat in Tajikistan, or that they travelled through that region particularly in order to vindicate their belief in human kindness.”

Nick Fury - S.H.I.E.L.D. sees the world as it is, not the way we would like it to be.
You tell em, Fury!

Now, this appears to be edited since the time someone posted this in my Facebook comments. It used to be marked “FALSE”, now Snopes is settling for splitting hairs over the true intention of the Millenial Cyclists, and calling it a “Mixture”. My intention of posting this was to make it clear to the many doe-eyed, idealistic morons on my friends’ list, is that the world is NOT a safe place. There are dangerous corners of the world, and not everything is like a festival in San Francisco. You venture to these places, and you don’t look like everyone else there… you will be a victim. Robbery, rape, murder, human sex trafficking, organ harvesting, kidnapping, you name it. In America, we take for granted how clean and safe our environment is. Many people think the rest of the world is that way.

Maybe you should ask a Jewish person how limited their world-traveling can be.

After someone posted this link to inform me that I was committing the grave sin of “Spreading Fake News,” I quickly went to the cyclist’s blog site where they stated the following:

” You watch the news and you read the papers and you’re led to believe that the world is a big, scary place. People, the narrative goes, are not to be trusted. People are bad. People are evil. People are axe [sic] murderers and monsters and worse.
I don’t buy it. Evil is a make-believe concept we’ve invented to deal with the complexities of fellow humans holding values and beliefs and perspectives different than our own—it’s easier to dismiss an opinion as abhorrent than strive to understand it. Badness exists, sure, but even that’s quite rare.”

If anything, this opened my eyes to a NEW kind of White Privilege. The one where you think every place is as nice as the gentrified neighborhood you just moved yourself and your gluten-free latte-maker into.

Seriously people… just be careful.
You have no idea how good we have it in America.
Solipsism kills.


2) Hitchhiker Killed by Muslims?

“While the Yes I’m Right story was based on a New York Times article published in April 2008, the web site made no attempt to inform its readers that the incident had taken place over eight years earlier and that they were republishing a years-old story with no clarification about when it occurred…

As the incident occurred eight years ago and Turkey is an officially secular country, it’s not clear how Yes I’m Right concluded (despite the statements from law enforcement and her own family) that Bacca had been killed over religion.”

Again, like the one above, they are splitting hairs over petty details like the date of the occurrence and the possible religious orientation of Pippa Bacca’s rapist(s)/murderer(s). They concede she was trying to promote peace. Given that Turkey’s flag has a crescent moon and star in it, I would say it is not exactly a “secular country,” Snopes. According to the Turkish government, 99.8% of the Turkish population is Muslim (although some sources give a slightly lower estimate of 96.4 percent). And while we don’t know who did it, it’s pretty reasonable to assume the culprit(s) were of the Muslim variety?

“We don’t know for sure” is not the same as “nope, this is false!”. You can draw a reasonable conclusion based on available facts and evidence.

Pippa Bacca 2008

The point is, some naive “flower-power” type thought the world was like the safe environment they have always lived around and had a rude awakening. Sure this could happen to anyone hitch-hiking, but aren’t we seeing a pattern with these peaceniks going to dangerous places to “prove us wrong”, only to have the exact opposite happen yet?

Look, I have met many Muslims in my life, and most have been warm and kind. (One even brought in an entire feast for our office to share to mark the end of Eid.). I know better to paint Islamic people with a broad brush like Right-wingers tend to do… but could it just be possible, that maybe, just maybe… many of these Muslim-majority countries aren’t safe for women to be traveling alone in, given their Bronze-age views towards women?

Also, I saw “Midnight Express”.
You couldn’t pay me to travel to Turkey without bodyguards.


kids in cages

3) Does This Photo Show a Toddler in a Cage Detained by ICE in 2018?

“However, as it turned out, the photograph was taken on 10 June 2018, but it did not show a child confined by immigration authorities to a cage. Rather, it was snapped during a protest staged in front of Dallas City Hall to call attention to the Trump administration’s practice of separating families and confining undocumented children.”

Now you know DARNED WELL this has made the rounds on social media and has been used consistently by the Left to support their “Children in Cages” narrative. (No, children aren’t in cages. What we see are misleading closeups of a “holding pen”). Had the Right-wing been this duplicitous, Snopes would have slapped them down with all their fury. As you read the article, clearly you see this crying child is actually part of a protest demonstration, and he is neither held by ICE or even in a cage against his will.

So it’s marked “False,” right?
(Even Politifact does)

NOPE! “Miscaptioned”.
Although clearly, there is ZERO truth to this picture, they want to soften the blow to any well-meaning people who are using this picture for their Liberal agendas.
“Oh hey, guys, I don’t want to upset your righteous anger, but it’s not as ‘TRUE’ as you would like it to be. Don’t be mad now.”


4) Is an ‘ Obama Don’t Separate Me From My Mommy ‘ Protest Sign Real?

“This is indeed a genuine photograph that was taken during the Obama era in 2014. However, there major differences between the immigration policy at the center of the pictured protest and the child detention centers that were at the center of public outrage in June 2018.

In a nutshell: Families were separated under President Barack Obama as the result of deportation of undocumented people from the United States. Families were separated under President Donald Trump as parents and children were put into different detention facilities after they crossed the border to ask for asylum in the United States.”

This one is the exact opposite of the one above. Yes, this sign is real. This was a real issue, not from being separated at the border, but from deportations.

Obama Latino protest - 2014
A protest from 2014 where Latino voters worried about the 60,000 illegal immigrants facing deportation.

However, it is also marked “MIXTURE” because of how it is used. And it really leads you to believe Snopes is running interference for the Democratic Party.
Kids are STILL being separated from their parents… instead of a holding pen a few hundred yards away, now it’s thousands of miles.

As sad as I find this separation of children and parents (and if you know my back history, you’d understand), the fact is, they are separating the children at the border for a reason. There is a rising surge of people kidnapping children to pose as families, in the hopes of getting through the border. And DNA testing of many of these suspected families is showing 1/3 of the children aren’t related.

So what do you find more reprehensible?
Children separated from “parents” until proven otherwise, or kidnapped children being used to sneak in by criminals and then heaven-knows-what happening to them afterward?

Also, most of the pictures of “kids in cages” that everyone is upset over are actually from 2014 (during the Obama administration), despite Snopes insisting Obama never separated families (which I can now no longer find on Snopes, but was used quite often in debates).


5) Did a Pennsylvania Daycare Receive a Racist Letter About a Black Employee?

Racist daycare letter

“Multiple social media users shared images of a letter they say was anonymously sent to the facility.”

I saved the best for last, because this is the entry that opened my eyes to Snopes and how they play with words, and frame things to suit one particular side of the political aisle. A daycare center in Whitehall, PA gets a letter complaining about a Black employee, and the phrase “make your daycare great again,” made it seem pretty obvious this racist person was a Trump supporter. The “multiple social media users” were just the daycare owner’s son and daughter… (so it’s not a “wide group of random witnesses verifying this act,” like Snopes is leading you to believe. More on that later.).

Hmm. If only people knew someone who lived in the area of this daycare center to give you an idea of how this is a complete hoax…

OH WAIT! YOU DO!
ME!!! I LIVED IN WHITEHALL, PA!

For three years, this was the location of the “Casa de Brooksy” as I worked surveying land for an oil company. I can tell you with all honesty, this must be the most diverse area I have lived in all my life (and by “diverse,” I am using the word correctly) it was easily 40% White, 30% Black, 20% Syrian, and 10% Hispanic and others. My next-door neighbor knew Barack Obama as a teenager in Kenya, and during the 2012 election was screaming as if her own cousin was just re-elected as President.

It would be insane to conceive that someone would have a concern about a Black person in this area. In fact, the daycare owner, Dominique McKelley, even says she has several Black employees.

@probablylexi busted
There was quite the online investigation at the time and it all pointed to the daycare owner’s daughter as the most likely culprit

And believe me, this was definitely NOT a Trump-supporting area.

And, ironically, Snopes has the most-likely culprit featured right in their article.

The one who spread this all over the internet via Twitter.

The one discussed in the comments of the Morning Call article about the event.

THE DAYCARE OWNER’S DAUGHTER, LEXI MCKELLEY.

There was quite a long thread by author Thomas Wictor who reportedly exposed Lexi as a fraud, a webpage by another unraveling the mystery scooby doo-style.

Sadly all of this has been lost to the memory hole as Thomas Wictor’s entire social media presence has been wiped out of existence in one of big-tech’s purges of right-wingers.

And since Ms. McKelley has never been arrested or convicted of this alleged hate crime (and yes, I agree it’s a hate crime), I try to word this all very carefully.

But if you use Occam’s Razor, see who is closest to the dumpster fire, who was enjoying all the attention, and who benefits the most from it… it’s rather crystal clear.

But don’t hold your breath for Snopes to try and bring the truth.
They worded it as “Did this actually happen?”, so any attempts to call this a hoax is immediately shut down by the people who want to see racism everywhere.

I have tried to explain to people online how this was hard to believe, given the racial composition of the area. But I got the usual shouting down by SJW-types.

What do I know, I only lived in this area, right?


CONCLUSION

Now don’t get me wrong, I have met some really dim-witted Right Wingers that still believe bullshit like “they found WMDs in Iraq,” and “they are using aborted babies for parts“.
(Okay, stem cell research? maybe… but what use is a heart that is half the size of a lentil on the black market?), and other insane conspiracies… and Fox News has been known for over a decade to spew partisan-skewed stories that barely resembled the truth.

But they aren’t the only ones.

CNN and MSNBC seem to be on the same mission of spreading partisan-based propaganda, we now have an industry of “Outrage News” online, where clickbait, shares, and visits generate tons of revenue from people looking to soothe their confirmation bias.

  • Where was Snopes when the kids from Covington HS were being crucified by the media, and Nathan Phillips gave his side of the story that was NOTHING like the events we all saw in the longer video?
  • Or when a woman nearly lost her business and reputation when people on Facebook posted a misleading picture of her talking to a young man about immigration, and they made it look as though she was hatefully screaming at him? (The kid actually had to come forward and clear it up as people were doxxing her and threatening her and her business)
  • How about when the Young Turks published a news piece about the Black church in Greenville, Mississippi burning down with “Vote Trump” written on the side and ridiculed any idea that it might not have been a Trump supporter or the hate crime it was made to look like?
  • Or when Shaun King falsely accused someone on his Facebook page of being a white supremacist and murdering a young Black girl?
  • Or hell, most of what Shaun King puts out to get the SJW crowd riled up that later turns out to be false? (and this guy is supposed to be a journalist?)
  • Or any number of articles by THE RAW STORY* that is immediately called out by readers as having a misleading headline that says the exact opposite of the story?

*Oh wait. Arturo Garcia was a writer for THE RAW STORY and is now a fact-checker for Snopes. That explains a lot.

Point is, the falsehoods are coming from both sides, and even foreign powers are joining in. We need an impartial fact-checker now more than ever.

Unfortunately, Snopes seems obsessed with Satire and anything that might help Trump get re-elected. Lord help us!

Are there any news falsehoods you can think of that Snopes either missed or got wrong?

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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Before you find yourself ‘Dooced’….

This should be a must-read for anyone blogging or thinking about starting a blog….

Free Expression Can Be Costly When Bloggers Bad-Mouth Jobs
(Registration is required, but I expect anyone in the know to ALREADY have an account with The Washington Post Anyway)

SoApBoXThis should be a “MUST READ” if you have a blog, journal, personal website, or a message board.

We have an expression in blogging, “Getting Dooced”. It’s from a very famous case when the author of Dooce.Com was fired for her content on her weblog… particularly for badmouthing her place of business and co-workers.

Now I’ve seen this happen on the web AND in real life. A lot of bloggers feel “safe and anonymous”. They may even make a casual remark that they forget all about, until the WRONG PERSON finds it buried away in your site via a Google search.

When this happens it’s always the same old song & dance. They feign shock and outrage as their “private thoughts” (which they put on the world wide web, go figure) are supposed to protected by the first amendment…

And, get this, they feel like THEY’RE the ones who were wronged!

Newsflash, chuckles: The world doesn’t work that way. Try and see it from your employer’s point of view. They are trying to keep and maintain a corporate image, they have customers on the web… who may stumble upon your remarks and it puts their company in a bad light. It’s about the same as making flyers that say “MY COMPANY SUCKS!” and passing them out in front of the building.

You don’t even have to name the company by name. If they know it’s you, and you’re talking about the job you’re working in…. that is MORE than enough to warrant your termination from your place of employment.

You may think you’re protected under the cover of anonymity, but you’re not. Your domain can be looked up in a WHOIS search. Search long enough in someone’s archives and you can piece together who is the author behind the writings. A large number of times these dopes write their weblogs/journals on company time, so their site is in their history folder.

And the First Amendment doesn’t give you the “freedom to say anything you want and be an irresponsible twit”, any more than a drivers license gives you the freedom to drive on a sidewalk and plow pedestrians.

Just a word to the wise…
don’t write something you don’t want your worst enemy to read. The web is the LAST place you want to put something where you don’t want it found.

But if you do, don’t expect any sympathy from me.

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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Blogs, media, and the gullible American public

An interesting USA today article caught my eye from a few days ago:
Freewheeling ‘bloggers’ are rewriting rules of journalism

Please read it first, form your opinion, and then come on back here and read what I think… let’s discuss this as I’m interested in your thoughts.

Eric thinks…
It’s about change. Or more to the point, how technology is changing the rules on how the games are played. It’s a by-product of the American media failing to inform us, as we have to turn to outside international sources to know “what’s REALLY going on”.

It makes me wonder how much faster it would have expedited Watergate, or changed our views on Oliver North, John Poindexter and other “heroes” of the Iran/Contra scandal, or Reagan’s conroversial remarks at Bitburg. Surely it arrived in time at the tail end of the Clinton/Monica scandal (which could have saved Ken Starr a small fortune of the taxpayer’s money.) And it would have been a great laugh to see rightwing pundits criticize Clinton’s air strike on Osama bin Laden, calling it a “distraction from Monica”, and be able to throw 9/11 in their face three years later (if they were stupid enough to keep it in their archives).

While it’s true, I think Blogland played a major part in the Trent Lott fiasco becoming a (rightfully) bigger issue than it would have normally been…

… I still think bloggers shouldn’t let this new-found power go to their heads though. Blogs are just what it is… a one-sided perspective of the writer’s opinions. It’s not “Facts” or “Gospel Truth”. Don’t flatter yourselves.

It’s op-ed columns, not “objective journalism”. There’s a difference. There is still the need to use legitimate news articles to link to and form opinions. Weblogs are not going to replace news sources… but maybe this will help journalists and editors of the “liberal media” find their balls again.

It will play a large part for Washington, and its out of touch politicians to get an idea of what the people think, and it will change the way campaigners will “play the game” in order to get elected. To me, this article read as a “wake-up call” to folks like Karl Rove and Joe Trippi.

What will it do for our policies? Nothing much. Bloggers will never have the contol over Capitol Hill like lobbyists will. The worldwide protest and outrage against going to war in Iraq is evidence that “money talks”, and that’s the only language that the New World Order understands.

(Update: It appears L.A. City Beat seems to agree with my assessment too.)

Like Trent Lott, bloggers will make sure the Nigerian YellowCake/Valerie Plame fiasco won’t just fade away either.

And much like our administration’s need to operate in secrecy, rule through irrational fear of a faceless enemy, bully the media, and keep the public from asking “why?”… bloggers with alternative views still have internet bullies like The InstaPutz and his followers to keep them in line.

Ask Electric Frontier Foundation co-founder John Perry Barlow. (InstaPutz post)

Let the bloodshed begin…
Like I said, either way I win. :0)

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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Where hatred ends and humanity begins

Rarely do I agree with Michele these days. However I do respect her. She’s an excellent writer and this is one of those times where an emotional post *should* override politics and agendas.

Yeah I admit it. I’m no fan of the Iranians. I’m programmed to hear the word “Iran” and think of the 1979 hostage crisis, Ayatollah Khomeni calling America “The Great Satan”. All that fun stuff. The hilarity of last April didn’t help either with Sayed and Blogshares. They hate me. I hate them back. No problem.

Hating people back certainly doesn’t bring a solution in the long run (unless the goal is genocide or total annhilation), it’ll go on for generations. It brought to mind an old episode from The Jeffersons about bigotry and compassion. George Jefferson (a black man) saved the life of a white supremacist who suffered a heart attack, while getting in a mad fervor and inciting a mob against him.
Continue reading “Where hatred ends and humanity begins”

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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A very brief year in review

I am so.f**king.tired….

Please forgive me gang, I don’t have the energy to do another New Years Eve extravanganza like last year.

…and I may be wrong… but I think a lot of people want to let 2003 go quietly off into the night anyway.

I sure as hell do. It wasn’t a “great” year, by any stretch of the imagination, but it was certainly better than the two that came before it. Have I mentioned how friggin’ tired I am?
Continue reading “A very brief year in review”

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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Mission Accomplished… uhm, again

SoApBoX
From triumph to cockfight in a matter of hours
…Or how the NeoCons in America can screw up a wet dream

Perhaps I can explain my stance with a little parable.
They seem to work really well when we needed to take already-scrambled American brains filled with trauma and fear and justify totally irrelevant points in the past:

A man whose family was murdered by a maniac received a call from the police:

“We got him! Come on down to the police station.”

Excited and seeking closure, he arrives only to see a different face in the lineup.

“Mr. Jones”, the police officer asks, “can you identify the man who mugged you ten years ago?”

“W-what???”

The officer goes on to explain that the mayor has put high priority of apprehending this suspect. He’s wanted for a wide number of crimes, including murder, rape and armed robbery, and it’s the hopes of the mayor’s office to get him off the streets with Mr. Jones’ testimony.

“Right there. Number two”, Mr. Jones points. Very puzzled and dissappointed.
“What about the man who killed my family?”
“We haven’t found him yet, sir.” The officer replies, feeling his pain.

Mr. Jones leaves the stationhouse with mixed feelings. A dangerous criminal will now spend the rest of his life behind bars, but it still feels like a cheap second-hand consolation prize. Still carrying that hollow feeling inside and no hope for closure.

He still feels the police are doing an excellent job, but he thinks the mayor is a total asshole.


It certainly didn’t take long for the joy and jubilation of one less tyrant on the loose to turn into an immature “Hey, let’s go piss all over the anti-war folks!” gloatfest.

Led by none other than Glenn “IstarePugnant” Reynolds himself. He turns to his Coalition of the Clueless, instills in their empty skulls that Democrats and anti-war blogs are “devastated” by the news of Saddam’s capture (I have yet to read one site where Saddam’s capture was construed as “bad news”.), and yesterday’s news somehow justifies invading a country on pretexts of “WMD” and being a clear and present danger to the United States, and makes it all “worth it”…

Oh wait, the warbloggers had their doubts, so then it became about mass-graves, and rape rooms…

Oh wait, now that we got Saddam, he’s gonna crack, so it’s back to the weapons again…

Just when we were all laughing at Glenn for his questioning of why a protest with Iraqi commies wasn’t all over the American news (Original post), he has this to divert everyone.

Lucky him.
Yes. Followers of Glenn are truly the “InstaPutz-es”. Always good for a laugh. Somehow this little immature rightwing “gloatfest” is now supposed to sway us all to vote for Bush.

Uh huh.

Let’s step out of “fantasy land” for a minute…

    What Saddam’s capture means:

  • The end of his reign of terror over Iraq
  • Will boost the morale of our armed forces who have accomplished something fantastic.
  • Humiliation of yet another “hero” of the Islamofascists, and proving he’s a coward, just like the rest of the “tough talkers” in that region who shut up once they’re staring down a barrel of an M16
  • Checks to suicide/homicide bomber families are going to bounce from now on
  • Possible information to the rest of his operatives, and a slim chance of vindicating the Bush Administration with the location of the mythological Weapons of Mass Destruction
    What his capture DOESN’T mean:

  • An end to the insurgents killing American troops (If you think they’re fighting *for* Saddam, I have a bridge in Kirkuk to sell you)
  • End of the war
  • Troops pulling out any time soon. We’re in this one for the long haul.
  • Any way shape or form letting the U.S. and U.K. off the hook for a war based on faulty/fraudulent information (dare I say LIES?)
  • The end of the Democrat’s chances of winning the Presidency (Are you kidding? There are PLENTY of other reasons not to vote Bush in 2004)
  • Making us any safer from Terrorists here or abroad

Osama bin Forgotten Just curious, does anyone even REMEMBER this repulsive piece of shit over there on the right? Anyone? I understand September 2001 was a long time ago for internet-based Americans, but… World Trade Center?
Pentagon? Flight 93?

“Let’s Roll”…?
Ahhh, your pupils twitched, it’s all coming back now.

When did Osama and Al-Qaeda stop becoming important?
Until Osama bin Laden is captured (or killed), then I’ll consider the blood of some 3,000 + innocent Americans avenged. Instead, we find ourselves swallowing bullshit from the Bush Administration (since Sept. 12 2001) that Saddam is the public enemy #1. $87 Billion dollars that could have gone to rebuilding Afghanistan is now going to settle old scores and set into motion a plan that even Bush Sr. thought was insane.

A war of mass distraction.

Too bad FDR didn’t have Fox News. He could have convinced us to take over Korea after Pearl Harbor… which is pretty much what we did with Iraq after 9/11 isn’t it?

Don’t get me wrong, I am proud as hell of our armed forces. I supported kicking the Taliban’s ass. Yet, because I thought Iraq was going to be a big mistake I’ve had my patiotism questioned, been called “Anti-American”, a “peacenik”, a “Lefty” and all sorts of names.

For NeoCons who don’t get the “Brownshirt” references that offend you so… let me enlighten you on a quote from another fine patriotic man who followed his leaders without question:

“Of course the people don’t want war. But after all, it’s the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it’s always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it’s a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger.
— Herman Goering at the Nuremberg trials [Emphasis mine]

Sound familiar?

Let me save some wingnuts some time in the comments with some ready-made answers (not that I think their short attention spans got them even this far):

  • “Clinton didn’t do shit against terrorists!”
    1. Quite the contrary
    2. And he didn’t need that un-American “Patriot Act” to do it.
    3. Why does every criticism of Bush go back to Clinton anyway?
  • “But he was a horrible tyrant!”
    No shit! Like Pinochet? or Mugabe? or Khadaffi? or a dozen other 3rd-world tyrants? How come none of you are screaming for justice about them? Why? Because you could really give two shits less about them, just like you haven’t given Iraq a thought in almost a decade. Just stop… you’re embarrassing yourselves.
  • “But the mass graves… the rape rooms…”
    Do I look like I care? You only “cared” when your other arguments fell apart. The only time I cared was when U.S. soldiers were captured. Show me one post where ANYONE had any concerns over the plight of the Iraqis prior to Sept. 11th. I dare you.
  • “Tell me this war wasn’t worth it.”
    “The Americans promised freedom and prosperity; what’s this? Go up to their headquarters, at one of those checkpoints where they point their guns at you, and tell them that you hate them as much as Saddam, and see what they do to you,” said Mohammad Saleh, 39, a building contractor… “The only difference is that Saddam would kill you in private, where the Americans will kill you in public,” he said.

    You tell me.

  • “Oh, those poor oppressed Iraqi people!”
    Oh please! I’ve read wingnuts who call on the genocide of Palestinians, Pakistanis and Saudis all the time… what made the Iraqis so freakin’ special? Here’s a clue: What do you do when the people you are trying to “liberate” are shooting back at you? What? They didn’t get the memo?

    The poor oppressed Iraqis are certainly proving they’re willing to stand up to the most powerful military force the planet, yet they didn’t have the spine to take out Saddam themselves? They weren’t worth a drop of American blood as far as I’m concerned. I want my money back.

  • “Would you rather Saddam stay in power?”
    Nice loaded question. This guy answers it better than I ever could.
  • “Can you find hidden weapons in a country the size of California?”
    Funny. Didn’t we all call Hans Blix all sorts of names and thought three months was more than enough time for the U.N. inspectors to find something? Hipocrisy anyone?
  • “Why do we keep letting Saudi Arabia off the hook when we know they finance terrorism (not to mention most of the hijackers were Saudi)”

    Well, moron. (Let me try and use monosyllabic words for this) it’s because…
    Ok, you got me there. I’ve been asking the same question myself.


Is this about being a good American, or a good Republican?
Ok. You got Saddam, Mr. President. Congratulations.
Any chance of you thinking of the American people for the next 11 months?
Or can we have our country back now?

If wingnuts can rampage all over the web over something like this, imagine how they’ll be if Bush is re-elected. (???)

Let’s put these smug pricks back in their place next November.

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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World AIDS Day 2003

World AIDS Day 2003: Live and let Live Quite frankly, I always seem to miss “World AIDS day” every year. Not that I think AIDS awareness is unimportant (quite the contrary). It just seemed so “trendy” and “the thing to do” with bloggers back then. Now that the posts have dwindled down on the web… I think I can be my usual “untrendy” self and make a mention as the message of awareness and debunking the myths and stigmas needs to be circulated.
Continue reading “World AIDS Day 2003”

Eric Brooks

Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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Not MY child!!!!

SoApBoX
It’s been a while since I’ve commented on any web-skirmishes (no I haven’t missed any, I just chose to avoid them like the plague. Most of them were stupid, and a waste of my time anyway.).

I thought I’ve read it all on the web, but this load of horseshit definitely takes the cake:

“No, I do not condone punching kids or hitting them with belts, paddles, sticks, switches, kicking them, pulling their hair, etc.

But a slap across the face or their ass…you betcha! I don’t care who it is! The discipline does not just need to come from the parent. Remember the paddle in the principle’s office?”

Responses from the web:

  • Electric Venom – I think Kate took the post as meaning “parents not disciplining THEIR kids, is making social miscreants”. To that, I’d have to agree. I doubt highly she’d tell anyone “Sure, hit my kid… that’s ok! Sock ’em one for not making their bed this morning, while you’re at it!”

    In fact, I can’t think of a single parent that would say anything like that.

  • Meryl Yourish – “No matter what your opinions on hitting children, when a person who is not the child’s parent hits him, it’s illegal and just plain wrong. (And by the way, Serenity? No way do I want you near a child of mine, not with that attitude…)”

    Yeah, Meryl has hit the point that Bhoomi, Glenn, and I have found very disturbing in this post. While you’re at it Valerie, can you stay away from my kids too?

  • Valerie’s response to Meryl: “[update] Btw: Yourish nice attitude. You obviously missed my entire point. I didn’t say ANYONE can smack a kid”

    Let’s roll the videotape…

    “But a slap across the face or their ass…you betcha! I don’t care who it is! The discipline does not just need to come from the parent.

    Uhm… yeah, you DID say that.
    By the way, it’s “PRINCIPAL‘S office” not “PRINCIPLE‘s office”
    (Which end of you did they use that paddle on, Valerie? Just curious.)

  • Seeing as how Glenn was made an example of in the comments by a bunch of bitter, obviously-childless, people (who found the word “penis” offensive, yet they used variations of the word “fuck” at least 12 times to get their points across on this page… go figure!), you’d have to be out of your mind to post an opposing opinion in there. So I’ll say it here:

    “Oh I can hear it now from the peanut gallery. ‘No one has the right to back hand my child…..if someone ever did that to MY kid I’d have their ASS!’ …”

    Oh no. I wouldn’t say that at all. What I would say is:
    If someone lays one finger on any of my children. I will fuck them up.
    Just so we’re clear on this in the event of any future discussions on this topic.

    Doesn’t matter if you’re big or small. If you’re bigger than me, I’ll use a baseball bat. If you’re smaller than me, it’ll probably hurt more. If you’re exactly my size, I’ll probably use a baseball bat, just so you’ll hurt as much as if you were smaller than me. I fight dirty, so wear “ball protectors” when you see me coming.

    I will teach you that hitting is wrong, by beating you to a pulp.
    Any questions?

    No. I am not particularly thrilled with the current laws, created by a bunch of hysterical liberals, that curtail parents from disciplining their children, nor do I agree with them 100%. I have learned, however, that a little reasoning does go a long way with my kids. I know my kids aren’t saints. I know their flaws and I know their strengths. I know they can be royal pains in the asses sometimes. Reversing the situation with “How would YOU feel if that was done to you?” or “Would YOU like it if the cat stuck a fork through YOUR stomach?” usually breaks them from a lot of their annoying practices. Of course, my kids are probably a lot more intelligent than your hellspawn, I’ll give you that.

    As this is the “house where all the kids come to play”, and like to call my wife and I, “mom & dad”, they also have many obnoxious friends. Yet, somehow, the thought of me smacking any them has never crossed my mind. For starters, they’re not mine to do it to. I go to their parents.

    If their response is: “My child would NEVER DO THAT!”…

    Then I threaten to punch their mom or dad in the mouth.
    If you ask me, that’s where you’re doing society the favor.
    “Not MY child” types are the ones who need to be hit with a clue-by-four.

    What was even more disturbing was the cattle call of “Right ons!” and “Hell Yeahs” in the comments of that post from the folks who all have a history of giving me a migrane when I read their blogs. You know, deep thinkers who can solve the Middle East crisis with genocide, object to their tax money paying to give American kids breakfast (yet a $70 billion+ quagmire in Iraq is no problem), or curing my headache with .44 caliber aspirin.

    Most memorable quote:

    “Kids today need a good beating every now and then. If you don’t beat your kids when they fall out of line, the next thing you know your son will go off and bang some dude in the ass just out of spite.”

    Oh wait… that was Maddox and his spoof about child abuse. He was being funny. Quite scarily, these folks are saying the same thing and are dead serious.

    My mom hit me maybe once in my whole life, usually she just had to talk to me the way I talk to my kids now. Of course, I realize I was a superior child, as many of you were probably hellspawn.

    I’m not sure how old Valerie is that she could be sent to the “principle’s office” for a paddle, but I went to public school in Brooklyn from 1970-1983, and teachers weren’t allowed to hit us back then.

    Last I checked, hitting a minor was against the law.

    EricBrooks.Com® – Yes, by all means, beat your kids (and everyone else’s) to make them upstanding citizens. It worked wonders for Jeffrey Dahmer, folks who grew up to abuse their children, and a bevy of other serial killers and child molesters, didn’t it?

    *Note – I found out a day later, the author of that poorly-written drivel’s name is Valerie, not Trish… but calling her Trish pisses her off for some reason, so I’m leaving it. Hee! Hee!

    ** On second thought 11/21/03 – The REAL Serenity has shown up, and while it’s been real fun (and it seems many people have made the same case of mistaken identity with this half-witted wannabe), it’s not right to insult the real Trish like this… therefore I’m switching it all back to “Valerie”, that moron’s real name. And my sincerest apologies to Trish.

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    New Legal Notice: Please Read!

    I seem to attract a certain type here on this site.
    Or maybe the web attracts them, and they all find their way here.
    (Like a “Mecca for Wack Jobs”)

    I don’t know if it’s insecurity, loneliness, a need for constant validation…
    … or maybe they’re just taking their medication in far less doses than prescribed.

    SoApBoX
    You know the type: Their world fits in this neat little box. They’ve got it all figured out… the only way they can maintain this little facade is by hearing and seeing only what they want.

    When their fragile, imaginary world begins to fall apart… they keep order by throwing fits and having minor psychotic episodes every now and then. Scare every one into submission and MAKE everyone tell them what they want to hear. It’s far easier than taking a look inside themselves, and seeing what it is that’s wrong with them.

    [Insert a clip of Jack Nicholson’s “YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH” here.]

    Somehow, someway, it always comes back to bite me in the ass eventually. My “nodding and agreeing with the crazy person” eventually turns into “Eric is SO two-faced”. And then a campaign to convince the world that I’m the antichrist because it turns out I’m not the person that they built me up to be in their delusional little heads. And there’s always an idiot or two that follows along in their soap opera. They never seem to get that we’re all simply posting a one-sided story on our sites.

    Well, maybe I am a *little* two faced, sort of. I like to think of it as “diplomacy” though. But I’m not the one who’s afraid to look deep inside my cold, black little heart here. I know me pretty damn well, and I certainly don’t think I reflect the real me at all on a web page. People like to come here, amuse themselves with tales about the latest hole I find myself in… and watch me dig my way out. :0) It amuses everyone, and I have no illusions that anyone really cares beyond the time it takes to drop an email or leave a comment.

    And hey… I’m cool with that.

    So before the usual suspects start with the war drums (and yeah, I admit I have quite a few select lunatics in mind with this post), let me get to the point at what precipitated this preced.. brought this on:

    An incident happened recently where I did the dumbest thing imaginable… I said something negative about a former client in another part of this site, and it almost cost me my job.

    It was beyond dumb and irresponsible… even for me.

    I’m not going to feign outrage, and act as if I’m running a private diary here. I have since apologized, removed whole sections, and have tried to set it right. Many of you have designed sites for other people, and you know what I’m talking about… you could probably write volumes of stories. I accept the consequences.

    But there are some things you never say out loud or in public. You don’t trash a client. Ever. And it was really out of character for me to let that slip like that.

    So, effective immediately… as part of my agreement with the powers that be: Work is officially off-limits on this site. No mention of projects, or people, or even my opinions based on local news… nuthin!

    So with my family and friends *already* off limits for some time now, I suppose I’ll just be making stuff up here.

    Compared to what we’ve actually been through over the past three years… fiction would probably be more believable anyway.

    To the rest of the looney toons that I have been steadily pissing off on a regular basis, I now have the following legal disclaimer posted on all my pages to indemnify myself:

    Disclaimer: The views expressed herein are solely those of Eric Brooks. They do not necessarily reflect those of his employers, friends, contacts, family, or even his pets (though my cat, Puddy, seems to agree with me on many key issues.). In accordance to my terms of use, you hereby acknowledge my right to psychoanalyze you, practice accupuncture, and mock you incessantly with every visit. As the user, you also acknowledge that the author has been legally declared a “Problem Adult” by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and is therefore not responsible for any of his actions.

    remember: I probably never liked you to begin with.
    (Well, maybe not YOU, per se. I’m actually directing that to the OTHER people reading this. Certainly NOT YOU. WE’RE BUDDIES! I think YOU’RE the greatest thing since sliced bread… you know that, right?)

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Spamming for the Lord

    I’m getting a kick out of this new wave of spam I get.

    “Christian dating service”, “Christian credit unions”… I’ve gotten everthing except “Barely legal Christian teens in the Philippines get bored on a farm” (but don’t think I’m not expecting it).

    It certainly doesn’t offend me. I just think it’s funny as he… heck. I was probably sold out signing up on some Contemporary Christian Music site (You know, “get 12 CD’s and a Chick Publication tract for 1¢”?).

    While of course there’s no “Thou shalt not spam” commandment on the books, isn’t spam sorta teetering in that grey area where another step closer you can actually smell the brimstone???
    Continue reading “Spamming for the Lord”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    In blogland…

    Sites I’m keeping an eye on:

    Hi, I’m Black! – Glenn cracks me up!!! Rocky III (In my opinion) was the best one… “White Glenn” is picking on him, and he’s trying to explain to Venomous Kate that, yes, you can accomplish a wide array of traffic by merely being obnoxious.

    (A point I thought I proved a long time ago.)
    Continue reading “In blogland…”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Free speech, trolls, and sissies

    Some interesting discussion over at e-Claire’s and Dog Snot Diaries today (and crap elsewhere).

    I for one, feel freedom of speech comes with a load of responsibility.

    It’s like having a driver’s license. While it enables you to drive a vehicle anywhere you want…

    …riding on the sidewalk and mowing down pedestrians is usually frowned upon by the police department.
    Continue reading “Free speech, trolls, and sissies”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Histrionic Personality Disorder

    Oh! The drama!!!Diagnostic Criteria
    A pervasive pattern of excessive emotionality and attention seeking, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:

    1. is uncomfortable in situations in which he or she is not the center of attention

    2. interaction with others is often characterized by inappropriate sexually seductive or provocative behavior

    3. displays rapidly shifting and shallow expression of emotions
    Continue reading “Histrionic Personality Disorder”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Oh the Drama-O-Rama-Lama Ding Dong!

    Oh! The drama!!!HA! HA! HA! HA!
    Oh man, I thought I was the only one in the world who had problems with this word-twisting loosely-glued NUT CASE!!!

    Oh yeah, comments are on. I wouldn’t miss the fireworks for anything!!!

    (Found via Kare, who has some pretty wise words on web conflicts.

    Not as wise as Geoffrey’s parting remarks though. *SNORT!!!*)

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Pet Peeve of the Year (for this week)

    Recently seen on the web:

    “I’ve moved to a new URL. Please email me and beg like a dog for the new address, and maybe, just MAYBE… I’ll give it to you.”

    SoApBoX
    Uhm, no. Ok?

    I see a lot of these pages lately.
    It’s just easier to take down their link, as they’re apparently hiding from someone.

    You know… I understand the need for privacy, the occasional need to vent and let something out. We all do that sometimes. I understand password-protected entries, sites, or sections… perhaps you feel uncomfortable with a relative, employer, spouse, or a bloodthirsty stalker reading your innermost thoughts.

    But when I see a message like the one above…
    …perhaps publishing on the web isn’t for them, ya think?

    Stupidity abounds on the web, especially in the blog world. People feel “freedom of speech” means you can say anything you want without repercussions, and blogs are treated like “private diaries”, you had the silly illusion you were anonymous until someone did a WHOIS lookup, blah, blah, blah.



    As obnoxious as I seem on the web, I still adhere to the rule to never post, write, or leave on an answering machine something I wasn’t willing to say to a person’s face. Really. Ask Carole about any one of “Eric’s greatest hits” in real life with what I’ve said to people, especially her annoying friends.

    Take it from someone who, this time last year, discovered every page of this site was printed and ready to be read to a judge in a court hearing.

    I know whereof I speak.
    A little self-censorship won’t kill you.
    Trust me.

    We make our mistakes, learn and move on. We don’t run, hoping who we are running from doesn’t find us again. I posted a link to a person’s “new” site once. They called me an idiot in my comments (“You idiot! How am I supposed to blog anonymously if you put a link to my page???”.)… you can bet I’ll never do that again.

    People from my job read this site (including my boss. After all, he hosts the site), family reads it, my neighbors read it, and so do potential clients…

    … which is what I understand the concept of the WORLD WIDE Web was all about. So I welcome it.

    “The web is the last place in the world to attempt to hide anything. The code is against you. The browser is against you. The computer and its connection are against you. The structure and protocols used in the internet are against you.”
    Alan Herrel – “Hiding Content

    Go ahead… argue with me in my comments. Tell me I’m wrong. The floor’s open…

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Why I’m such a jerk.

    I’m not only a jerk, but I’m damn good at it.

    Hell, I’m better at it than you’ll EVER be, BAY-BEEE. Wait, better yet, I’m on a professional level of jerkiness!!! Batgrl didn’t knickname me The Vortex Of Mischief™ for nothing, ya know.
    Continue reading “Why I’m such a jerk.”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Central Park Revisited

    In the news: Trisha Meili, aka “The Central Park Jogger” is coming out with a book about her 1989 attack called “I Am the Central Park Jogger: A Story of Hope and Possibility“.

    I remember the story all too well. On April 19th, 1989, she was grabbed while jogging in Central Park, brutally raped, her head bashed in with a rock, and left for dead as she lost 3/4 of the blood in her body. It was one that outraged New Yorkers We prayed, we worried… but mostly we saw red…we wanted justice to the point where we wanted to see it served at all costs.
    Continue reading “Central Park Revisited”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Death by Redundancy

    You know, Faith is right… (never mind the fact that “Miss Originality” herself simply ripped off this post, and gave it her own spin.). You stick around CyberTown long enough, and you see the same crap being regurgitated, over, and over, and over… with a new crowd ooh-ing and ahh-ing like it’s the first time; and the world is coming to an end.

    And all you wanna do is puke in their comments.

    Can anyone PLEAAAAASE find a new topic to fight about?

    Is there anything new to fight about?

    Something Faith and I didn’t try to kill each other over back in 2000?

    Brawl Of The WeekYeah… everybody remember “Brawl of the Week” from last year? Does anyone see me calling Kevin Parrott a dirty, rotten, stinking, low-down, snake-in-the-grass, plaigiarist?

    Wouldn’t I look like a total asshole pretending I was the first ever person to think of Rock ’em Sock ’em Robots When it comes to you fake-ass plastic people? I’m sure a zillion other people did it before that.

    So come on, you lame ass newbies… you heard the challenge. Fight about something new and original!!!

    Unless it’s the old “I’m a whore because I showed my boobs??? Well, here they are AGAIN!!! *FLASH*”.

    Us guys never get tired of that one.
    It’s a timeless classic.

    EricBrooks.Com® – Reminding you that originality is the art of hiding your sources.

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Beyond the scope of words

    I’ve been a bit reflective today.

    I’ve been doing this page since April of 1998. There was no Blogger. In fact, there were no blogs. There were journals, and “what’s new” pages having to adapt or die like a dinosaur. I’ve seen people come, I’ve seen them go.

    I’ve seen people learn the hard way that “freedom of speech” comes with a price. I’ve seen people complain of the “popular crowd”. I’ve seen the elite and the most despicable fall, and fall hard. I’ve seen people shattered to find that a sick person never existed. I’ve seen those stay silent about their maladies and/or tragedies. I’ve seen knee-jerk posts which the writer wishes they had never written. I’ve seen the unbelievably judgemental who can’t place themselves in someone else’s position. Employers and judges have read some people’s most innermost thoughts in public. Blind hatred. Mob mentality. Ignorance. People fired. People divorced. People alienated. People banned. People sued. People whose very lives have been destroyed.
    Continue reading “Beyond the scope of words”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    Memes and morons

    Say it with me, people: It was a stupid stuffed bunny, and nobody cares any more.

    This is a classic case of at least three sides of a story. There’s person #1 who started a meme, person #2 who is now convinced that they are this horrible person that everyone is mad at…

    And there’s my side of the story. Which, as always, is known as the “gospel truth”.

    While, yes, it seems at face value that there’s no excuse for person #2 to still be holding on to a passing meme… and the selfish morons are bitching to person #1 about it.

    Well, I happen to know that person #2’s life happens to be in shambles right now (it’s not my story to tell, but it’s pretty bad). Perhaps mailing this retarded stuffed animal isn’t top priority in their mind right now. Ya think?

    Of course, you can count on the web to be totally devoid of compassion, or sympathy, or even cutting someone a little slack.
    Continue reading “Memes and morons”

    Eric Brooks

    Musician, Programmer, Graphic Designer, Evil Clown - A thorn in the Internet's side since 1997 with no intention of stopping any time soon.

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    EricBrooks.Com® is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

    Disclaimer: The views expressed herein are solely those of Eric Brooks. They do not necessarily reflect those of his employers, friends, contacts, family, or even his pets (though my cat, Puddy, seems to agree with me on many key issues.). In accordance to my terms of use, you hereby acknowledge my right to psychoanalyze you, practice accupuncture, and mock you incessantly with every visit. As the user, you also acknowledge that the author has been legally declared a "Problem Adult" by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and is therefore not responsible for any of his actions.


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