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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 11-May-2013
11-May-13 World View -- Taliban promises bloodbath during Saturday's Pakistan elections

Web Log - May, 2013

11-May-13 World View -- Taliban promises bloodbath during Saturday's Pakistan elections

IRS admits Nixon-like targeting taxpayers for political purposes

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Taliban promises bloodbath during Saturday's Pakistan elections

Pakistan presidential candidates (L-R) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan (BBC)
Pakistan presidential candidates (L-R) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Nawaz Sharif and Imran Khan (BBC)

The al-Qaeda linked Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the Pakistan branch of the Taliban, has announced its intention to launch terrorist attacks all across Pakistan on Saturday, in order to disrupt the presidential elections. The elections are considered historic, since they'll mark the first time in Pakistan's history that there has been a peaceful transition from one civilian government to another. Already, more than 100 people have been killed in terrorist violence in the days leading up to the election. The TTP have been particularly targeting the "secular" or Shia political parties, while leaving alone the Islamist anti-American parties, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) of Nawaz Sharif and the Tehreek-e-Insaf (Movement for Justice) party of Imran Khan. On Thursday, a son of former prime minister Yousaf Raza Gilani was kidnapped and two of his aides killed.

Nawaz Sharif is expected to win the election, but with millions of new voters, anything might happen. Pakistanis are desperately looking for a "hope and change" candidate who could solve all their problems in a moment, and Imran Khan, the former world cricket champion and international playboy, has been advertising himself as that candidate. However, in a stroke of fate, Khan was hospitalized early this week after a campaign appearance where he accidentally took a hard fall and fractured a rib and damaged three vertebrae, forcing him to give one final televised campaign appearance from his hospital bed. Whether this will sink his campaign, or conversely, whether he'll get a big sympathy vote, is something we may learn on Saturday. Daily Times (Pakistan) and BBC

New South China Sea confrontation between China and Philippines

Philippine authorities admitted on Friday that one of their coast guard ships opened fire on a Taiwanese ship on Thursday, saying that their only intention was to disable the ship, which was threatening to ram the Philippines ship. Both ships were within overlapping 200-mile economic exclusion zones (EEZs) of Taiwan and the Philippines. However, one Taiwanese fisherman was killed in the incident, and both China and Taiwan are protesting the killing. China has repeatedly made it clear that they are going to use their vast military power to take control of the entire South China Sea, including several regions that have historically belonged to other countries, following a policy similar to Hitler's "Lebensraum" policy. They've announced that they intend to begin boarding and seizing control of other countries' ships in the South China Sea. The Chinese are supporting the Taiwanese in this incident, because China has also indicated that it intends to take control of Taiwan. LA Times

Syrian women get married for money in exchange for 'survival sex'

There are over 500,000 refugees from Syria flooding Jordan, most of them women and children. But aid organizations do not have enough money to fully support these refugees, so in order to make the money to feed their children, many of the women are opting for short-term marriages in exchange for several hundred dollars. "The men are usually between 50 and 80, and they ask for girls who have white skin and blue or green eyes. They want them very young, no older than 16," according to one marriage broker. BBC

Gun-control issue dives deeper into farce over 3D printing

Gun control farce reached new heights on Friday when the U.S. State Department ordered Cody Wilson, head of Texas nonprofit Defense Distributed, to remove from its web site the blueprints (CAD file) for the successful manufacture of a gun using an $8,000 3D printer.

When I wrote about gun control and 3D printing in December, I pointed out that there's no evidence that prohibitions in the past -- of alcohol, drugs, abortion and prostitution -- had any actual effect, but they had a large negative effect of creating bootleggers, organized crime, drug cartels and prostitution rings. Gun control has already produced huge unintended consequences in the form of would-be gun owners buying up all the guns and ammunition they can find, for fear of losing the opportunity.

The other unintended consequence is the enormous interest in 3D printers, which can manufacture small objects of all kinds. Thanks to the spur given by the farcical gun-control debate, we can soon expect to see thousands of gun manufacturers in garages and basements across the country.

This reminds me of the 1971 book by Abbie Hoffman, Steal This Book. The book contains instructions on everything from getting free abortions to using a shotgun to hiding from the law. Many attempts were made to prevent publication of the book, but when it finally was published, it made it on to the NY Times Best Seller list.

So with all the publicity for John Cody's CAD files for 3D printing guns, it's not surprising that the blueprints have already been downloaded 100,000 times. The files may have been removed from John Cody's web site, but they appear to be freely available on the Pirate Bay file sharing site. AFP and The Pirate Bay and Abbie Hoffman - Steal This Book

Greece's youth unemployment rate now at 64.2%

February jobless figures are out for Greece, and they show that the jobless rate expanded to 27%, up from 21.9% a year earlier. Worse, almost two in every three young people aged up to 24 years are jobless as the unemployment rate for that age group reached 64.2 percent in February. Kathimerini

IRS admits Nixon-like targeting taxpayers for political purposes

The Internal Revenue Service on Friday acknowledged that it flagged political groups with "tea party" or "patriot" in their names for special scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status, repeating the kind of actions that were in the impeachment charges that forced former president Richard Nixon to resign.

This comes on the same day that some members of the mainstream media are turning against President Barack Obama over the lies and coverup in the Benghazi matter. President Nixon was forced to resign because of a coverup of the Watergate matter, where nobody was killed, while four people were killed in the Benghazi matter. This is an administration whose members believe that they can break any law or say any falsehood and get away with it because the mainstream media has always been totally in the tank for Obama, and would always find some way to support him. Friday's turnaround could be politically significant. Washington Post

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 11-May-13 World View -- Taliban promises bloodbath during Saturday's Pakistan elections thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (11-May-2013) Permanent Link
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