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Hey tumblr. Let’s talk about bees.

External image

This is a bumblebee. It’s just one of MANY kinds of bee. They are ALL very important to nature and ESPECIALLY to human life.

There are articles about how important they are all over the place

And then there’s the information gathered from here on tumblr!

They can save your life.

Bees are LITERALLY gods miracle creature.

They pollinate the flowers, the plants and trees that make your food and clothes. Honey is a perfect food. It doesn’t go bad at room temperature. It can sooth burns. It can clean wounds. It helps heal sore throats. 

And then there’s this.

Bees are magic

and they’re dying

Save the fucking bees. Don’t call exterminators if you see them around your home, and are allergic. Call someone who can move them and stay inside to wait.

Bees will leave you alone if you leave THEM alone. They just want the plants, their hive, and their queen. They literally want NOTHING to do with you.

Some people might find them scary, they might be a little creepy to you, you might even be allergic, but they give you apples, and strawberries, and honey, and chap stick, and candles.

They’re beautiful, magical creatures.

Please.

Please save the bees.

USB-C cables are playing Russian Roulette with your laptop

Over the past year or so, one of the biggest tech stories has been about one of the smallest things: a USB plug. Specifically, the new USB Type-C plug and port, which promises to become the single thing that we can use to connect all our devices, from monitors to phones to computers to whatever we dream up next.

USB-C has the support of the biggest companies in the tech industry. Apple and Google released the first laptops to use it, and now it’s showing up on computers, tablets, and phones all over the place. USB-C is reversible and can deliver huge amounts of both power and data very quickly. Importantly, it’s also backwards-compatible so that adapters and cables can get us through the awkward period between now and when it actually becomes the universal standard.

It’s that last bit that has USB-C in trouble. Right now, if you aren’t very careful, a USB-C cable can destroy your laptop. If you just go to Amazon and buy any pack of USB-C cables you find, you could end up with a wire that can destroy your machine in a flash.

If you buy the wrong cable, you could destroy your laptop in a flash

That’s what happened to Google engineer Benson Leung, who, in the course of testing a USB-C cable, destroyed his Chromebook Pixel. It happened instantly. It also happened to me — I used a cheap cable I found on Amazon to charge my Nexus 6P and it drew too much power from my MacBook Air’s USB ports. Apple did a remarkable job engineering the MacBook’s ports — they shut down temporarily to protect themselves — but when they came back online, they only worked intermittently.

The problem is that when you plug a USB device in, it starts drawing power. If it tries to pull too much power, the device that supplies it can burn out. It’s not the Nexus’ fault that my MacBook got fried — it was just doing what it was supposed to do: ask for as much power as it can get. It’s not the MacBook’s fault either — its ports weren’t designed to handle delivering that much juice nor to know that they shouldn’t even try. It is the fault of the cable, which is supposed to protect both sides from screwing up the energy equation with resistors and proper wiring. This kind of failure is possible with any cable, but older kinds of USB devices didn’t draw this much power.

The only person actively helping consumers is a solitary Google engineer

The solution should be simple, then: just don’t buy cut-rate USB-C cables. But “just buy the more expensive one” is a really crappy solution. Right now, if you want to buy a safe cable, you have to know Leung is the only person vetting them in a broad way on Amazon. Here’s the process you have to go through:

  1. Know that this is an issue in the first place.
  2. Know that this one helpful Google engineer is the only person testing and reviewing USB-C cables.
  3. Go hunting for Leung’s reviews on Amazon (or, alternately, discover this spreadsheet or this website created by redditors to aggregate his reviews).
  4. Buy a cable.
  5. Pray.

This process is insane, and it shouldn’t be this way. In fact, I believe this failure should have been obvious to everybody involved in the creation of USB-C. Apple and Google helped design the spec, but a little-known industry group called the USB Implementers Forum is in charge of maintaining and propagating it. It does have a certification process for approving cables. When I asked about this issue, the USB-IF noted that it has certified 61 cables so far and that it “continually meets with the major retailers in North America, including Staples, Best Buy, and MicroCenter to educate about the importance of compliance and certification.”

It also pointed me to its logos that certify safety, which look hilariously outdated:

USB-IF Logos

But the real problem isn’t the logos, it’s that you can’t find them anywhere on the biggest electronics retailer on the internet: Amazon. If you want to buy a cable on Amazon — where you already shop — you will need to go through that five-step process above.

When hoverboards started exploding, the industry reacted. Amazon pulled sales, manufacturers stepped up their standards, and ultimately we got to a place where UL started certifying boards as safe. We’re not at the danger-to-human-life-and-limb stage with this USB-C problem, but nevertheless, we need a similar solution now.

We fixed hoverboards. Now fix this

Apple solved this problem with its proprietary Lightning cable. It has a “Made for iPhone” licensing program, and anything that doesn’t have that label is potentially dangerous. With USB-C, Amazon needs to pull dangerous cables from its store and every single retailer needs to demand that USB-C cables are certified. And the USB-IF needs its partners like Apple and Google to help push cable makers to stop making dangerous products. And, you know, a better logo wouldn’t hurt, either.

Even if these problems get fixed, USB-C still faces the usual aggravations that come with any new kind of connector. I’ve watched basically every kind of computer cable imaginable in the past 30 years take an achingly long time to propagate through the industry, and it’s always a hassle.*

If you want get an ex-PDA enthusiast (yes, we exist and we are legion) riled up, ask about the great Palm Athena connector wars of the mid-aughts.

Because I understand how slow these things go, I can accept that I still can’t connect my Apple-made laptop with my Apple-made display because finding adapters that work is nigh-impossible. I can also accept Intel’s frustrating pace of integrating its own Thunderbolt (not to be confused with Apple’s Lightning) standard into USB-C. USB-C is going to take awhile before it’s the standard.

But it will never get there if the only way to know whether a cable will literally blow up your expensive laptop is a single, heroic engineer leaving Amazon reviews and Google+ posts. Amazon needs to stop selling bad cables. Google, Apple, and everybody who makes devices that use the port need to get together and figure out how to let consumers know which cables are actually safe to use. Until that happens, consumers can’t trust this new standard — and that’s a great way to kill it before it takes off.

More from theverge.com:

The Latest: Keaton uses 'Spotlight' to praise journalism

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The Latest on Saturday’s 22nd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los Angeles (all times local):

7:30 p.m.

Michael Keaton says he considered becoming a journalist, and he’s using the platform of “Spotlight” to spread the word about the importance of investigative reporting.

The actor spoke to reporters backstage after the film won the best drama cast award at Saturday’s ceremony. “Spotlight” tells the story of how reporter uncovered rampant child molestation within the Catholic Church.

Keaton says reporters could have gotten ahead of the water-contamination crisis in Flint, Michigan.

Keaton says, “"As long as there’s no one to represent not just those, but the disenfranchised everywhere — I mention it because there are a zillion Flint, Michigans out there. Had there been a spotlight put on that, I would argue that maybe they would have been a little bit ahead of the situation.”

___

7:05 p.m.

The cast of “Downton Abbey” is a three-time SAG Award winner for outstanding drama ensemble. So how do they celebrate?

The actors quietly embraced backstage after their win. Then, once they got out of the ballroom, they let the whoops fly.

The cast of 20 claimed their Actor trophies and posed for a group photo when actor Allen Leech noticed the statuette’s perky posterior.

“Did anyone kiss his (behind)?” Leech asked. “He works out!”

With that, each of the cast members planted their lips on their trophy’s tush as photographers snapped away.

___

7:00 p.m.

The cast of “Spotlight” has won the best film cast at Saturday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards.

The film focuses on the Boston Globe’s award-winning investigation of pedophile priests in the Catholic Church. The film is a serious contender for a Best Picture Academy Award.

___

6:55 p.m.

Leonardo DiCaprio is the winner of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actor in a film for his performance in “The Revenant.”

DiCaprio braved icy waters, ate raw bison and performed other feats to make the 19th century survival epic as realistic as possible.

___

6:45 p.m.

Brie Larson is the winner of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best film actress for her performance in “Room.”

Larson played a young mother trying to give her son a normal upbringing despite the fact that they’re both captives of a man who abducted her years earlier in the adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s novel.

___

6:40 p.m.

The butlers, maids and nobles of “Downton Abbey” are the winners of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best television drama ensemble.

The show, which airs on PBS as part of its “Masterpiece” series, follows the lives of both the upper-class residents of a fictional British estate and the servants who dress, feed and care for them. “Downton Abbey” won the award last year as well.

It is currently airing its sixth and final season in the United States.

___

6:25 p.m.

Kevin Spacey is the winner of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actor in a television drama series.

The win is Spacey’s second SAG Award for playing corrupt politician Frank Underwood on the Netflix series.

___

6:20 p.m.

Viola Davis is the winner of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actress in a television drama series.

Davis won the same honour last year for the ABC series “How to Get Away With Murder,” in which she plays a criminal defence lawyer and law professor.

___

6:05 p.m.

Saturday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards have been a diverse affair so far.

Four of the winners in the first six individual SAG categories are black. Idris Elba has won two awards for performances on television’s “Luther” and the film “Beasts of No Nation.”

Uzo Aduba and Queen Latifah have also won acting honours.

After Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black” — which features many black and Latina actress — won best TV comedy ensemble, actress Laura Prepon proclaimed: “This is what we talk about when we talk about diversity.”

The wins come at a time when diversity in Hollywood has taken centre stage, especially after the second year of an all-white slate of Academy Award acting nominees.

The organization that hosts the Oscars has pledged changes to improve diversity of its membership.

The diversity at Saturday’s SAGs hasn’t just been skin deep. Jeffrey Tambor won for his role on “Transparent,” in which he plays a transgender father.

___

5:50 p.m.

Idris Elba has won the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actor in a television movie or miniseries for his role

Elba won for “Luther,” a BBC series about a fiercely devoted London police detective who uses a variety of means, including violence, to solve cases.

It is Elba’s second SAG win at Saturday’s ceremony. He also won the best supporting actor in a film for his role in “Beasts of No Nation.”

___

5:45 p.m.

Queen Latifah is the winner of the outstanding performance by an actress in a television miniseries or movie.

Latifah won for the HBO movie “Bessie” about the life of blues singer Bessie Smith.

___

5:30 p.m.

Idris Elba is the winner of the best support actor in a film at Saturday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Elba won for his role as an African warlord whose militia conscripts child soldiers into its ranks.

___

5:25 p.m.

Alicia Vikander is the winner of the best supporting actress in a film at Saturday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Vikander won for “The Danish Girl,” in which she plays the wife of an artist who was is one of the first people to undergo sex reassignment surgery.

___

5:20 p.m.

The cast of Netflix’s prison show “Orange is the New Black” are the winners of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best television comedy ensemble.

The show follows the lives of inmates at a women’s prison, weaving in the backstories of how they became incarcerated with scenes of how they’re coping with each other and the facility’s flawed staff.

Series star Uzo Aduba also won a SAG Saturday for best comedy actress in a television series.

___

5:10 p.m.

Jeffrey Tambor of “Transparent” is the winner of the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actor in a television comedy series.

It is the Tambor’s first SAG win. The actor plays a father who reveals to his adult children that he is transgender on the Amazon Instant Video series.

___

5:05 p.m.

Uzo Aduba has won the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actress in a television comedy series.

It is Aduba’s second consecutive win for playing Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren on Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black.”

___

4:15 p.m.

The cast of “Orange is the New Black” has traded in their prison garb for elegant formal wear.

Lori Petty is wearing a two-piece pink outfit decorated with dangling straps for Saturday’s ceremony. The Netflix series about the lives of inmates at a women’s prison is nominated in the best television comedy series ensemble category.

Laverne Cox wore a wine-colored dress with a long slit and Laura Prepon donned a luxurious floor-length gown.

___

3:50 p.m.

“Veep” star Tony Hale says the current political climate is so wild that the days of political comedy shows may be numbered.

Hale said Saturday on the SAG Awards red carpet that the nightly news is the genre’s biggest competition at the moment.

The unpredictable early days of the 2016 election cycle haven’t stopped the honours for HBO’s “Veep,” which stars Hale and Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

The satire, which features Louis-Dreyfus as a politician who ascends to the nation’s highest office, is nominated for best television comedy. Louis-Dreyfus is also nominated for outstanding television comedy actress.

___

3:30 p.m.

The Screen Actors Guild red carpet is heating up with early arrivals including nominee Christina Ricci and television stars Laverne Cox and Sarah Hyland.

Ricci arrived with her dark hair dyed blonde, but that didn’t stop fans from spotting her and screaming her name as she made her way down the red carpet.

She is nominated for best TV miniseries actress for “The Lizzie Borden Chronicles.”

Hyland stars on “Modern Family,” which is nominated for best TV comedy cast.

Early arrivals such as Cox and “Downton Abbey” star Joanne Froggatt were sporting wine-colored dresses.

___

3:15 p.m.

The stunt casts of “Mad Max: Fury Road” and “Game of Thrones” have received the first Screen Actors Guild Awards bestowed on Saturday.

The honours were announced on the red carpet before the SAG Awards are announced Saturday evening in Los Angeles. The show honours outstanding performances by actors in film and television.

More than 100 stunt performers were honoured for their work on the latest “Mad Max” film.

Nearly three dozen stunt performers will share the television stunt ensemble award for HBO’s fantasy series, “Game of Thrones.”

Red carpet arrivals are underway and the full SAG Awards ceremony begins at 8 p.m. Eastern.

___

12:20 p.m.

Although the SAG Awards are best known for their film honours, half of the winners announced Saturday night will be for acting performances on the small screen.

In the top two TV categories, best ensemble in a drama will be decided between “Downton Abbey,” “Game of Thrones,” “Homeland,” “House of Cards” and “Mad Men.” The comedy side pits “The Big Bang Theory,” “Modern Family,” “Key & Peele,” “Orange Is the New Black,” “Transparent” and “Veep.”

In addition, the great TV comedian Carol Burnett will accept the SAG lifetime achievement award from presenters Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

___

11:45 a.m.

Hollywood beset by a crisis over diversity is convening for the 22nd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards, where the top film honour may be a toss-up between the ensembles of two fact-based tales: “The Big Short” and “Spotlight.”

The awards — to be broadcast live from the Shrine Auditorium on TNT and TBS at 8 p.m. Eastern — come amid an uproar over a second straight year of all-white Academy Awards acting nominees. The issue has spawned cries for an Oscar boycott and precipitated membership changes for the academy.

This year’s SAG nominees, however, aren’t as homogenous as the Oscars. Among the five nominees for best film ensemble are the N.W.A biopic “Straight Outta Compton” and the child soldier drama “Beasts of No Nation,” whose star Idris Elba is also nominated.

What Does 'Making A Murderer' Reveal About The American Justice System?

Making A Murderer became a national obsession over the past month, a hit with true crime junkies (guilty) and all-purpose couch potatoes (also guilty) alike. In the aftermath, armchair detective work and the argument over what Steven Avery did or didn’t do became a frequent topic of conversation. But whatever you think about the case, and no matter whose almost equally improbable version you believe, the show raises an even bigger, scarier question: Is this really how the criminal justice system works?

While watching the show was alternately shocking and infuriating to people like me, who don’t spend much time in court (knock on wood), I wondered what the same experience was like for people who do. Speaking to Charles Dresow a high-profile defense attorney in Marin County, and (separately) to Michael F. Hellmann, a deputy public defender in Solano County, to get a few perspectives on it, I tried to have one of those conversations about the justice system Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos claim they were trying to start.

As long as we’re going to play armchair detectives and Monday morning lawyers, I figure we might as well have some professional supervision.

Whither Len Kachinsky?

Brendan Dassey’s memorable, Alfred E. Neuman clone of a lawyer — at least as the show depicts him — told the press that Dassey (Steven Avery’s nephew) had basically participated in the crime, but only under the influence of “evil incarnate” (in the form of Avery). And this was before he’d even met with his client. Which, frankly, seems like less than effective lawyering. Of all the show’s implications, the possibility that someone falsely-accused and ill-equipped to make intelligent legal decisions would end up with a ventriloquist’s dummy for a lawyer might be the scariest. Are there lots of Len Kachinskies out there?

Hellmann: No one likes public defenders. No one. I’m used to it at this point. It is kind of unfair. [Here I assured Hellmann that people probably weren’t lumping Kachinsky in with all public defenders. -ed.]  I think [Kachinsky] is an anomaly. I’ve never heard of someone trying to actively incriminate their clients. That was really rather horrifying. In most cases I think you’re actually better off going with the public defender. I have to say, it’s like anything, there are good public defenders and bad public defenders. The good public defenders, they really know the judges they’re in front of and the prosecutors they work with, so they know all their idiosyncrasies and really what’s going to piss them off. A lot of times, you can actually get a better result if you stick with the public defender.

Dresow: It’s hard to comprehend what Brendan Dassey’s first lawyer did. Absolutely unbelievable. It’s hard to watch. The real tragedy is if you read enough appellate opinions affirming convictions you see that this type of so-called lawyering is all too common. The media angle of it is fascinating too. Most of these cases happen in front of empty courtrooms.

Hellmann: I think [Kachinsky] was a court-appointed private attorney, and there’s a difference between [that and a public defender]. Most counties, in California at least, have a public defender’s office, it’s run by the county, and all the people who work there are county employees. What the court can do if there isn’t a public defender’s office in that county, they can go to the local bar association or they can have a contract with certain private attorneys in the area to take court-appointed cases. And that is usually the worst system you can imagine. There was actually an appellate case about that recently. It was arguing that because [court-appointed private attorneys] are only paid a certain amount per case, that there’s actually a disincentive to do any work.

Len Kachinsky explained how he came to be involved in the case in episode three, in one of the show’s more memorable interviews:

I just came in third in a primary for judge here in Winnebago County, it was kind of a bruising experience, as politics can be. And I got the call from the public defender’s office about 10 days after the primary to represent Mr. Dassey.

My basic takeaway here: If you’re ever in a position to need a court-appointed lawyer, be aware of whether you’re getting a professional public defender or a guy who came in third in a primary.

Did Avery’s Attorneys Play Too Nice?

Another question I had coming out of Making a Murderer was about something Avery’s lawyer Dean Strang says in his closing statement: “If and when police officers frame evidence, they are not doing it to frame an innocent man. They’re doing it because they believe the man guilty. They’re not doing it to frame an innocent man. They’re doing it to ensure the conviction of someone they’ve decided is guilty.”

Which, despite Strang’s otherwise stellar work, seems like an unnecessarily nuanced point to try to sell to a jury. It’s almost like he’s bending over backwards to give demonstrably negligent police work the presumption of good intentions. It seemed true, but unnecessarily complicated, and at the very least, we know it confused Donnie Wahlberg. Did they play too nice?

Dresow: Trials are a morality play. There good guys and bad guys. Most jurors come into a trial wanting to believe the law enforcement officers involved are the white hats. If it’s a law enforcement misconduct-type case, you have to work very hard to get the jury to set aside the notion that the law enforcement officers are the good guys and are cloaked with some extra type of credibility just because of their job. [That line] seemed to be an effort to give the jury a motive for the long-time law enforcement officers  involved to have done the terrible things necessary to convict an innocent man. It’s a nuanced but necessary argument.

Hellmann: That was a difficult case. I kind of think that was their only option. I don’t think they played too nice at all. I thought they did the best they could do under the circumstances. They may have come off as sort of soft-spoken, but to be effective in court, it’s not just what a jury sees or what a camera sees. It’s all the motions, the legal arguments, the pretrial motions… A lot of people expect that to be effective, you’re going to bang your hands on the table, and you’re going to throw books or whatever, but that’s just not how it is. Some of the most effective defense attorneys I know are incredibly soft spoken, and it works really well for them.

Putting the Defendant on the Stand

Steven Avery didn’t testify at his trial, while Brendan Dassey later testified in his. One of the most convincing parts of the show is Avery himself, who, unlike Dassey (again, at least the way it was depicted on the show) never seemed to change his story. He acted the way we traditionally expect the falsely accused to act — adamant, and sort of pissed off. Wouldn’t that have been good for a jury to see?

Dresow: The major drawbacks to having a client testify include the ability of the prosecution to use evidence that was [previously disallowed] as impeachment evidence during their cross examination. For instance in a resisting arrest trial a defendant might have prior convictions for resisting arrest. A judge might disallow the prosecutor from introducing evidence of the priors during their initial case, but rule that if the defendant testifies, the prosecution can bring in proof of the priors to impeach the defendant’s credibility. If Steven Avery had prior convictions or incidents involving aggression towards women he might have not taken the stand to avoid evidence of the prior conduct from being admitted to impeach him.

Knowing what we do now about Avery’s ex Jodi Stachowski’s allegations of a pattern of aggression toward women (the most damning of anything that’s come out, in my mind), this sounds like it may have been a consideration.

Dresow: A defendant’s testimony creates an all-or-nothing moment. You can either win or lose your case depending on how the testimony goes. The Constitution provides an absolute privilege not to testify and the jury is instructed not to consider the lack of testimony for any purpose. However most jurors do want to hear an innocent person take the stand and proclaim their innocence. I tend to have my clients testify more than other attorneys because I like to be able to tell the jury during opening that my client will take the stand and tell their side of it.

The Science of False Confessions

In the West Memphis Three case and now Making a Murderer, both convictions relied heavily on coerced, or at least leading, confessions from defendants of below average intelligence. I wanted to know how common it is, and whether anything is changing about the way police handle interrogations.

Hellmann: When you get into the science of false confessions, like the cops will say, “If you admit it, things will be less bad for you.” Of course it’s completely the opposite. When there’s a confession, the bail is going to be higher, the charges are more serious, and the case is going to be stronger from the DA’s point of view. So no, I think it hasn’t changed. The only thing that’s slightly better now is that they record them. So it’s possible for someone that’s an expert, that has a psychological background and research training, you can call them as an expert to point out what’s wrong with the interview. It’s been like this since the Reid technique was developed in Chicago, so it’s been a couple decades now.

I’d never heard of the Reid Technique, so I asked a San Francisco police officer who has been involved in interrogations about it. “That ‘We know you’re guilty, just tell us what you know, make this easy for yourself’ stuff?’ We don’t really use that,” he told me. “In movies and TV you see that used all the time, sort of as a Hail Mary pass. We don’t really use that, that’s going to be the first thing that the defense attorney challenges. Now, I’ve used things akin to that, like little ruses. Like saying ‘I have hours and hours of video of you talking to this person’ when I don’t. We use the video thing all the time. Or ‘We already know you did it, if you want to get ahead of this, give us your side of the story.’ But actually, that works a lot less than you’d think.”

Dresow: Police interrogation technique has gotten more sophisticated and focused on working towards a given conclusion, which is problematic when the police have decided that a certain individual is guilty and needs to confess. The goal of interrogation is to get a confession and the conduct of the interrogator can easily taint the responses of an intellectually or emotionally challenged individual.

My cop friend tells me, “I can attest that there are many techniques to interrogation that I as a moral person feel are unethical. Do they get employed to the point that people think they do? No. Are we trying to walk people into a false confession? That hasn’t been my experience. Is it slightly unethical to use a ruse? There are times and places where that’s unethical. But there are times an places where I have a really, really, good hunch about something, and it’s the only way is to get him to admit it. Investigations get bungled all the time, but the arresting-the-wrong-guy phenomenon… it’s very, very rare, in my opinion. It happens a lot less than people think it does.”

I tend to believe both parties here. As an attorney, you want to keep your client from incriminating themselves, and for a cop, getting a guilty person to act against their better judgment is a necessary part of the job.

My police source offers another anecdote:

In one case, we arrested these two kids who were out on [redacted] street with guns. It was a gun arrest. We were trying to show that they weren’t just standing there, that they were actually trying to rob people. One kid just turned 18, the other was 25. [The second] was a little older and had been through the system, so we knew he probably wasn’t going to talk. So we talked to the younger one, and it was kind of like ‘If you guys are out there robbing, we understand, we just want to make sure you weren’t killing people.’ And he was like, ‘Well, yeah, were just trying to get some money.’ When, of course, that’s all we really thought they were doing in the first place.

I imagine most people would consider that an acceptable strategy. The difficulty is trying to find the line between a criminal dumb enough to implicate themselves, and a suspect mentally impaired enough that they’re liable to confess to something they didn’t do. Dassey, it seemed, fell pretty clearly into the latter camp. Which led me to my next question…

If Brendan Dassey Couldn’t Get An Appeal, Who Can?

Even with hours of tape of a clearly leading confession, and an attorney that told the press his client was guilty before even meeting with him, Brendan Dassey couldn’t win an appeal. Is it really that hard?

Hellmann: I don’t know exactly how it works in Wisconsin, but in California, you have the right to an appeal. But it’s very deferential to the lower court’s decision. And it really takes very glaring and egregious errors for an appeals court to take any corrective action. It’s very, very hard to win something on appeal. It does happen, but it’s very few and far between. The thing is, judges are elected officials, and I think it’s slightly unfortunate, because they have to stand for public elections. All it takes is one case, you know, “This judge let a murderer walk free!” That’s their opponent’s next campaign slogan. I do think the majority of judges tend to be quite conservative, their rulings tend to favor the prosecution.

Dresow: The appointment of the first lawyer for Brendan was a failure of our criminal justice system. The irrevocable damage done to his client through his actions was impossible to reverse by the second set of attorneys.

How Can It Be Better?

It’s easy to point out things wrong with the criminal justice system. A jury is essentially a focus group, which I find terrifying, but it’s still the best we’ve got. Still, there must be things we can do better, right? I asked the lawyers if they could change one thing what it would be.

Hellmann: Just one?

Dresow: Ensure equal access to justice by properly funding indigent defense. Indigent defense attorneys must be given the resources, training, and support necessary to properly represent their clients against the full weight of governmental accusations. The heartbreaking truth is that many wrongful convictions are at least partly the result of representation by under-trained, unfunded, and overworked attorneys who weren’t equipped to stop or object to governmental misconduct or incompetent evidence.

Hellmann: Maybe not having judges elected. And the reason I say that is that if a judge wasn’t elected, they wouldn’t have the threat of having to go in front of voters with people saying “You ruled this way and let this guy walk free,” when maybe it was because it was a violation of his constitutional rights. That could be a place to start.

I hope something good can eventually come out of this series, because it feels pretty depressing at this point. It certainly doesn’t offer much in the way of closure, which has led a lot of people to try to find it after the fact, which maybe will turn out to be a good thing? The trouble with the justice system seems to grow out of the same root dilemma as almost all political disagreements: How much help does society owe people who can’t help themselves?

Now Watch: Leave It To The Internet: Web Detectives Find New Evidence In Steve Avery Case


Vince Mancini is a writer and comedian living in San Francisco. A graduate of Columbia’s non-fiction MFA program, his work has appeared on FilmDrunk, the UPROXX network, the Portland Mercury, the East Bay Express, and all over his mom’s refrigerator. Fan FilmDrunk on Facebook, find the latest movie reviews here.

Rapier Gold Inc. Announces Completion of Expenditure Requirement of Rio Tinto Share Purchase Agreement, Extension of Private Placement, Advance Notice Provisions

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(Marketwired - Feb. 5, 2016) -

NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO UNITED STATES NEWS WIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE UNITED STATES

Rapier Gold Inc. (TSX VENTURE:RPR) (the “Company”) is pleased to confirm that, with the completion of the recent drill program on the Fox Outcrop of the Talc Mine Area, we have fulfilled the expenditure requirement on Pen Gold North of $1,500,000 under the share purchase agreement with Rio Tinto.

The drill program was completed in mid-January and consisted of seven holes totaling 1,400 m. Drill core is currently being logged and assayed, details of the objectives of the drill program were outlined in the Company’s news release of January 5, 2016.

Private Placement

The Company is extending its private placement financing with respect to the non-flow through units at a price of $0.05 per unit, to March 4, 2016. Each unit consists of one share and one two-year warrant exercisable at $0.10, for aggregate proceeds of up to $310,825. The private placement is non-brokered and the Company has received regulatory approval for this extension. For detailed information see the Company’s news release of November 19, 2015, the first tranche of $239,175 was closed on that date.

Prospectors and Developers Conference Toronto

The Company has been invited by the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines to present at the Ontario Pavilion at the PDAC International Convention in early March. The PDAC, is the world’s leading Convention for people, companies and organizations in, or connected with, international mineral exploration.

Advance Notice Provisions

The Company also announces that it has amended its Articles to include an advance notice provision for the election of directors at meetings, further details are outlined as Appendix B.

Pen Gold Project Summary

  • The Company’s activities are exclusively focused on exploring the Pen Gold Project, comprising approximately 16,400 hectares (approximately 160 sq km) located on Highway 101, 75 km south west of Timmins, Ontario. Appendix A. The project is approximately 45 km southwest of Lake Shore Gold’s Timmins West Mine and the newly discovered 144 Exploration Area.
  • Pen Gold Project appears to be on the western extension of the Porcupine-Destor Fault Zone (PDFZ), one of the most productive gold structures in the world. This fault zone extends east into Quebec and hosts many of the largest and most famous gold mines in Canada. The Timmins Camp has produced approximately 72.5 million ounces to date.
  • Recent work by the Ontario Geologic Survey and the Company on the Pen Gold Project, confirms the presence of key geologic features seen in many Timmins Camp PDFZ-related gold deposits in the belt. This work highlights that the Pen Gold Project area has been under-explored and that prospectivity of a large scale gold deposit exists in the project area. Therefore, a long term, systematic exploration approach must be developed to ensure that the project is given the attention it deserves.
  • Lake Shore Gold are conducting an extensive exploration program on 144 Exploration Area, which is outlined in a very comprehensive section of the company’s website (www.lsgold.com/Mines-Projects-Properties/Review-of-Properties/Timmins-West-complex/144-Gap-Zone-Discovery/default.aspx).
  • Pen Gold Project is located approximately 85 km northeast of Goldcorp’s Borden Gold Project. Goldcorp acquired this project in the takeover of Probe Mines, on March 13 2015, for $526 million. Goldcorp are actively advancing the Borden Gold Project as a source of ore for the 11,000 tpd Dome Mill, located 160 km away in Timmins. Appendix A shows the locations of the 144 and Borden projects in relation to Pen Gold Project.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Roger Walsh, President & CEO

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

This news release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy nor shall there be any sale of any securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful. The securities have not been and will not be registered under the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “U.S. Securities Act”) or the securities laws of any state of the United States and may not be offered or sold within the United States or to, or for the account or the benefit of, any person in the United States unless registered under the U.S. Securities Act and applicable state securities laws or pursuant to an exemption from such registration requirements.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements: Certain disclosure in this release constitutes forward-looking statements. In making the forward-looking statements in this release, the Company has applied certain factors and assumptions that are based on the Company’s current beliefs as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to the Company, including that the Company is able to obtain any government or other regulatory approvals required to complete the private placement and Company’s planned exploration activities, that the Company is able to complete the private placement, that the Company is able to procure personnel, equipment and supplies required for its exploration activities in sufficient quantities and on a timely basis and that actual results of exploration activities are consistent with management’s expectations. Although the Company considers these assumptions to be reasonable based on information currently available to it, they may prove to be incorrect, and the forward-looking statements in this release are subject to numerous risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause future results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements. Such risk factors include, among others, that the private placement will not be completed, that actual results of the Company’s exploration activities will be different than those expected by management and that the Company will be unable to obtain or will experience delays in obtaining any required government approvals or be unable to procure required equipment and supplies in sufficient quantities and on a timely basis. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company does not intend, and expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to, update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

To view Appendix A, please visit the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/rpr0205appendixa.pdf.

Appendix B

The Company has amended its Articles to include an advance notice provision for the election of directors at meetings, wherein

  1. In the case of an annual general meeting (which may also be an annual and special meeting of shareholders), not less than 30 and not more than 65 days prior to the date of the annual general meeting; provided, however, that in the event that the annual general meeting is to be held on a date that is less than 50 days after the date (the “Notice Date”) on which the first Public Announcement of the date of the annual general meeting was made, the Shareholder Notice may be given not later than 5 p.m. in the time zone of the Head Office on the tenth (10th) day following the Notice Date; and
  2. in the case of a special meeting (which is not also an annual meeting of shareholders) called for the purpose of electing directors (whether or not called for other purposes), not later than 5 p.m. in the time zone of the Head Office on the fifteenth (15th) day following the first Public Announcement of the date of the special meeting.

For further details of this policy, please contact the Corporate Secretary of the Company.

To Ποτάμι: Οι παράλογες αποφάσεις της κυβέρνησης διαλύουν τη χώρα

Ότι κατάφερε με τις αποφάσεις της να έχει όλους τους πολίτες απέναντί της η κυβέρνηση, λέει το «Ποτάμι» σε ανακοίνωση του αναφορικά με τις απεργιακές κινητοποιήσεις που κλιμακώθηκαν σήμερα.

«Και οι γραβάτες και οι ιδιωτικοί και οι δημόσιοι και οι αγρότες… Η κυβέρνηση κατάφερε το πρωτοφανές. Να τους έχει όλους απέναντί της. Όλους αυτούς που τους υποσχέθηκε τα πάντα και τώρα τους απογοητεύει στα πάντα.

Οι υπουργοί της κυνηγημένοι μπορούν να διαφεύγουν πότε με ελικόπτερα, πότε με στρατιές αστυνομικών αλλά όλα αυτά δείχνουν μια άρρωστη πολιτεία. Καλούμε τον κ. Τσίπρα να αντιληφθεί ότι τα ψέματα τέλειωσαν.

Να πει την αλήθεια στους εξαπατημένους και να ζητήσει ειλικρινή διάλογο με όλες τις επαγγελματικές τάξεις που θίγονται από τις παράλογες αποφάσεις της κυβέρνησής του.

Εύκολες λύσεις δεν υπάρχουν. Η ανικανότητα όμως και τα ψέματα των υπουργών κάνουν μέρα με την ημέρα τα πράγματα δυσκολότερα. Η ατμόσφαιρα διάλυσης δεν απειλεί μόνο την αριστεροακροδεξιά συμμαχία αλλά την ίδια τη χώρα»

北市府前地下停車場長智慧了 以後停車更方便

北市府前地下停車場完成建置全場車位在席偵測及智慧尋車配備,民眾除可透過固定式「智慧尋車機」查詢車輛位置外,現在更導入Beacon應用,透過手機即可於停車場內隨地查詢車輛所在並可顯示路徑圖。

停管處指出,府前廣場地下停車場為全市最大公有地下停車場,汽車停車格達1,982格,現除導入TAG系統提供汽、機車快速進出場,也增加智慧化停車場設施,全場停車格裝設車位在席偵測攝影機及智慧尋車機,民眾可以利用車位上的紅綠燈號,快速辨別是否有剩餘車位,若忘記車輛停放位置,也可透過智慧尋車機,以悠遊卡、停車卡或車號碼查詢車輛停放位置,節省找車時間。

停管處表示,府前停車場目前更透過Beacon微定位功能,可提供民眾利用手機「MoBuy」App,快速導引車輛到停放位置,並結合停車場周邊商家資訊,提供導引、導覽、優惠資訊等推播服務,後續也將繼續推出Beacon更多的服務應用,讓整個城市更加智慧化。

Oscar Rivas fera face à Gerald Washington

MONTRÉAL - Le poids lourd d'origine colombienne Oscar Rivas mettra sa fiche parfaite en jeu face au Californien Gerald Washington le 27 févirer prochain, à Anaheim.

C'est ce qu'a fait savoir Groupe Yvon Michel mercredi.

Le combat entre Rivas (18-0, 13 K.-O.) et Washington (16-0-1, 11 K.-O.) sera présenté en préliminaire du chmapionnat du monde des poids plumes du World Boxing Council entre Leo Santa Cruz et Kiko Martinez.

Un autre championnat du monde, pour le titre super-coqs de la World Boxing Association entre les Mexicains Julio Ceja et Hugo Ruiz, fera également les frais de la demi-finale.

Il s'agira d'un premier combat depuis le 28 novembre dernier pour Rivas, qui avait alors terrassé Joey Abell à 46 secondes du deuxième round. D'ailleurs, Rivas a remporté ses sept derniers combats par mises hors de combat, n'ayant livré que 15 rounds en tout au cours de cette séquence. Son dernier combat de plus de cinq rounds remonte à juin 2012, alors qu'il avait remporté une décision majoritaire après huit rounds face à Sylvera Louis.

Quant à Washington, il a connu un parcours particulier avant d'atteindre la boxe. Après une brillante carrière au football universaite à l'Université du Sud de la Californie qui l'a mené aux équipes d'entraînement des Seahawks de Seattle et des Bills de Buffalo, il a servi comme mécanicien d'hélicoptères dans l'armée américaine.

Le boxeur de 33 ans a livré un nul partagé à Amir Mansour à son dernier combat, en octobre dernier.

歐盟改革新方案 英相遭輿論狂批

(中央社記者黃貞貞倫敦2016年2月3日專電)歐洲理事會主席圖斯克為防止英國脫離歐盟,提出歐盟改革方案,英相卡麥隆自認獲得重大勝利,但英國銷售量最大的太陽報等多家媒體重砲批評,根本是痴心妄想的國際笑話。

卡麥隆承諾在2017年底前舉辦公投,讓英國公民決定是否脫離歐盟,他主張英國續留歐盟,但前提是歐盟必須進行改革,因談判進行順利,公投時程提早到今年6月。

圖斯克 (Donald Tusk)2日公布歐盟改革方案,卡麥隆自豪取得重大進展,但保守黨內疑歐派不滿,更有內閣官員計劃支持脫歐。

其中,包括每日郵報、太陽報、每日快訊(DailyExpress)、每日鏡報(Daily Mirror)等數家媒體,今天毫不留情面的痛批卡麥隆,以「最大妄想」、「卡麥隆你以為你是誰啊,開什麼玩笑?」、「卡麥隆的歐盟協議是個笑話」、「卡麥隆最大手筆的歐盟豪賭」等,在頭版頭搭配照片批評歐盟改革方案。

其它如每日電訊報、泰晤士報和金融時報的標題內容較和緩,但也不太正面,內容包括內閣官員將反對卡麥隆的歐盟協議、布魯塞爾有權拒絕英國對移民福利的限制、卡麥隆要讓保守黨內疑歐派接受歐盟協議,將有硬仗要打。

這次協商中最受矚目的限制移民福利申請,媒體肯定卡麥隆與歐盟討論,但是結果令人失望,英國政府提出限制住在英國的歐盟移民住在海外的子女不得申請福利,但協商結果並未如願。

另外,圖斯克提出所謂的「緊急煞車」,給予會員國對居住不滿4年的歐盟新移民福利限制權力,每日電訊報認為,歐盟對於何時啟動這個機制的時間點並不明確。

太陽報指出,歐盟的改革方案對英國最關注的2大問題,即解決失控的移民人數及英國被歐盟削弱的權力方面,完全沒有任何進展,這個方案「絲毫不會改善英國人民的生活」。

太陽報總結,卡麥隆與歐盟的改革協商是個重大挫敗,今年6月英國將舉行歷史性的歐盟公投,不論英國公民支持或反對脫離歐盟,可以確定的是,歐盟根本沒有給予英國好的改革方案。

每日郵報也直批歐盟是個腐蝕的官僚單位,根本不了解歐洲目前面臨的危機,「這就像鐵達尼號撞上冰山沉沒後,還買了一張搭鐵達尼號的船票」。

基金:週二開放式股票型基金淨值市價一覽表(六)

           淨 值 漲 跌

●安聯投信

 台灣大壩      15.70 -0.10

 科技大壩      23.44 -0.02

 台灣智慧趨勢    17.94 -0.11

*全球生技大壩    33.73 +0.23

*全球生技大壩-美元  8.19 +0.04

*亞洲動態策略    19.36 +0.19

*全球新興市場    13.74 +0.06

*全球計量平衡    11.63 +0.05

*全球綠能趨勢    7.94 +0.03

*全球人口趨勢    9.04 +0.04

*全球農金趨勢    9.83 +0.07

*中國策略增長    11.55 +0.01

*全球油礦金趨勢   7.36 -0.09

*中國東協新世紀   12.14 +0.02

*亞洲小型企業    10.51 +0.09

*四季雙收入息A   10.19 +0.07

*四季雙收入息B    9.30 +0.07

*四季雙收入息A-美元 9.39 +0.05

*四季雙收入息B-美元 9.06 +0.04

*四季雙收入息B-CNY  9.34 +0.02

*四季成長組合    10.28 +0.08

*四季成長組合-美元  9.18 +0.05

*中華新思路     9.08 +0.06

*中華新思路-人民幣  9.11 +0.02

*中華新思路-美元   8.85 +0.04

●國泰投信

 中小成長      36.56 -0.05

 平衡基金      22.89 -0.10

 台灣計量      11.16 +0.03

 高科技       9.31 -0.06

*中國內需      13.31 +0.03

*中國內需(USD)    0.4317+0.0002

*中國內需(USD)I   0.4368+0.0003

*中國新興戰略    14.90 +0.05

*中國新興戰略(USD)  0.4393+0.0006

*亞洲成長      8.45 +0.09

*亞洲成長(USD)    0.2593+0.0025

*歐洲精選      10.14 +0.05

*歐洲精選(USD)    0.3167+0.0014

*新興市場      8.34 -0.02

*全球資源      5.42 -0.02

*全球積極組合    14.82 +0.06

*全球積極組合(USD)  0.4402+0.0016

*全球穩健組合    12.89 +0.04

*全球基礎建設(USD)  0.3878+0.0016

*全球基礎建設    12.28 +0.06

*環保趨勢      8.29 +0.08

*環保趨勢(USD)    0.2462+0.0022

*中港台       11.81 -0.03

*中港台(USD)     0.3515-0.0015

*紐幣保本基金    11.1660+0.0174

*紐幣八年期保本基金 10.9177+0.0143

*紐幣2021保本基金  10.6791+0.0217

*Man AHL組合期貨  11.61 +0.01

●德銀遠東投信

 台灣旗艦      15.69 -0.08

 科技基金      13.59 -0.07

*全球原物料能源   14.84 -0.08

*全球神農      8.99 +0.02

*多元集利組合-累積型10.84 +0.02

*多元集利組合-分配型 8.48 +0.01

*全球生技創新    9.85 +0.10

*全球生技創新(USD)  8.75 +0.07

●KGI凱基投信

 開創基金      17.83 -0.05

 台灣精五門     18.35 -0.01

*台商天下      10.14 +0.04

*亞洲四金磚     13.49 +0.05

*資 源 國      8.46 +0.01

*新興市場中小    12.85 +0.08

*雲端趨勢      15.38 +0.19

*亞太高股息     10.15 +0.08

*新興趨勢ETF組合   6.29 -0.12

*護城河       11.40 +0.11

*護城河(USD)    10.2188+0.0727

*亞洲護城河     9.95 +0.09

*亞洲護城河(USD)   9.2347+0.0635

*亞洲護城河(CNY)   9.79 +0.08

●施羅德投信

 樂活中小-A     14.90 -0.03

 樂活中小-I    3261.70 -6.94

●華頓投信

 台灣基金      16.58 -0.02

 中 小 型      17.90 -0.02

*黑鑽油源      6.00 +0.03

*全球時尚精品    13.35 +0.23

●富蘭克林華美投信

 第 一 富      27.78 -0.16

 傳產基金      16.22 -0.09

 高科技基金     14.57 -0.10

*坦伯頓全球股票組合 11.2887+0.1224

*新 世 界      11.89 +0.08

*新 世 界(USD)    9.38 +0.04

*新 世 界(CNY)    9.72 +0.09

*中華基金      10.72 -0.05

*中國消費      8.52 -0.08

*中國消費(CNY)    7.97 -0.06

*中國消費(USD)    8.88 -0.10

*中國A股       9.73 -0.08

*中國A股(CNY)    7.67 -0.05

*中國A股(USD)    9.12 -0.09

*全球成長      9.03 +0.03

*全球成長(USD)    8.52 +0.01

●富達投信

 台灣成長      22.44 -0.08

*卓越領航全球組合  12.44 +0.08

 註:「*」表海外型基金為前一日淨值

Οι ΗΠΑ θέλουν τη Μεγάλη Βρετανία μέσα σε «μια ισχυρή ΕΕ»

ΚΟΣΜΟΣ Ο υπουργός Εξωτερικών των Ηνωμένων Πολιτειών της Αμερικής Τζον Κέρι θα ανακοινώσει «σημαντικές νέες συνεισφορές για την υποστήριξη των προσπαθειών

تنفيذ 579 حكمًا قضائيًا وضبط 24 قطعة سلاح متنوعة في حملة أمنية بالغربية

شنت مديرية أمن الغربية حملة أمنية أمس الاثنين بنطاق دوائر مراكز وأقسام المحافظة لإعادة الانضباط الأمني وضبط الخارجين عن القانون والهاربين من أحكام أسفرت عن تنفيذ 579 حكمًا قضائيًا وضبط 24 قطعة سلاح متنوعة.

كان اللواء نبيل عبدالفتاح مدير أمن الغربية قد تلقي إخطارًا من العميد إبراهيم عبدالغفار مدير المباحث الجنائية بنتائج الحملة التى أسفرت عن تنفيذ 579 حكمًا قضائيًا شملت “جنح حبس وجنائي ومخالفات وغرامات” وضبط 24 قطعة سلاح “أبيض وناري” و13 قضية تجارة وتعاطي مخدرات و5 قضايا آداب عامة و8 قضايا مصنفات فنية و2 قضية أموال عامة و6 قضايا تلوث بيئي و103 مخالفة سرقة تيار كهربائي.

كما أسفرت نتائج الحملة عن ضبط 12 مسجل خطر و15 مشتبه فيهم جنائيًا وتم اتخاذ الإجراءات القانونية حيال ذلك وجاري إخطار النيابات المختصة بمراكز وأقسام المحافظة.