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If ‘The Creepy Line’ trailer doesn’t scare you, you’re not paying attention

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Search engine and social media manipulation isn’t news. The fact that most people realize they’re being manipulated and continue to use services like Google and Facebook is a condemnation on our own sensibilities. Most of us are willing sheep, but we’re not being led to the slaughter. They’re pointing in the right direction and we’re walking there on our own.

I haven’t seen this movie but the trailer is enough to make me want to see it. The trailer above, released today, may already be enough to spook many people. I hope so. I was concerned before, but now I’m downright scared.

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Argentina: Submarine missing a year found deep in Atlantic

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Argentina Submarine missing a year found deep in Atlantic

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina’s navy announced early Saturday that searchers found the missing submarine ARA San Juan deep in the Atlantic a year after it disappeared with 44 crewmen aboard.

The vessel was detected 800 meters (2,625 feet) deep in waters off the Valdes Peninsula in Argentine Patagonia, the statement said.

The navy said a “positive identification” had been made by a remote-operated submersible from the American ship Ocean Infinity, which was hired for the latest search for the missing vessel.

The discovery was announced just two days after families of the missing sailors held a commemoration one year after the sub disappeared on Nov. 15, 2017.

On Thursday, on the anniversary of the disappearance, President Mauricio Macri said the families of the submariners should not feel alone and delivered an “absolute and non-negotiable commitment” to find “the truth.”

Macri promised a full investigation after the submarine was lost. Federal police raided naval bases and other buildings last January as part of the probe, soon after the government dismissed the head of the navy.

The San Juan was returning to its base in the coastal city of Mar del Plata when contact was lost.

Argentina gave up hope of finding survivors after an intense search aided by 18 countries, but the navy has continued searching for the vessel.

The German-built diesel-electric TR-1700 class submarine was commissioned in the mid-1980s and was most recently refitted between 2008 and 2014. During the $12 million retrofitting, the vessel was cut in half and had its engines and batteries replaced. Experts said refits can be difficult because they involve integrating systems produced by different manufacturers, and even the tiniest mistake during the cutting phase can put the safety of the ship and crew at risk.

The navy said previously the captain reported on Nov. 15 that water entered the snorkel and caused one of the sub’s batteries to short-circuit. The captain later communicated that it had been contained.

Some hours later, an explosion was detected near the time and place where the San Juan was last heard from. The navy said the blast could have been caused by a “concentration of hydrogen” triggered by the battery problem reported by the captain.

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Opinions

Silicon Valley is like Hollywood. Conservatives get blacklisted and swept under the rug.

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Silicon Valley is like Hollywood Conservatives get blacklisted and swept under the rug

Sometimes, mainstream media jumps straight to conclusions that turn out to be wrong. Other times, they refuse to jump to a conclusion even if the evidence clearly points to it. We have a case of the latter with Facebook, Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey, and the anti-Hillary organization he supported.

Several media outlets have picked up on a report from WSJ suggesting Luckey’s ouster was because he donated $10,000 to a group that produced memes against Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Why Did Facebook Fire a Top Executive? Hint: It Had Something to Do With Trump

https://www.wsj.com/articles/why-did-facebook-fire-a-top-executive-hint-it-had-something-to-do-with-trump-1541965245?mod=mktwInternal Facebook emails suggest the matter was discussed at the highest levels of the company. In the fall of 2016, as unhappiness over the donation simmered, Facebook executives including Zuckerberg pressured Luckey to publicly voice support for libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, despite Luckey’s yearslong support of Trump, according to people familiar with the conversations and internal emails viewed by The Wall Street Journal. Luckey’s ouster from Facebook was a harbinger of battles that have broken out over the past year over the overwhelmingly liberal culture of Silicon Valley, which has given the tech industry public-relations headaches and brought unwanted attention from Washington.

The social media giant has been called out by conservative media and Republican politicians over their leftist leanings, particularly in their coveted news feed that directs millions of users per day to various websites across the internet. The company has been accused of stacking the deck in favor of left-leaning news outlets and even censoring reports from right-leaning sources.

This latest report of actions taken by a tech company against a Donald Trump supporter is big because of the players, but this is a systemic issue throughout Silicon Valley. I know. I’ve seen it myself.

The blacklist

In Hollywood, rumors spread quickly. Someone might be a sexual predator like Harvey Weinstein, in which case reports spread throughout Hollywood for decades before it was ever brought to the public. Through it all, Weinstein continued working and people kept working with him. If he had come out as a conservative, his views might have sunk him more quickly. It’s an unforgivable sin to lean to the right in Hollywood.

The same is true in Silicon Valley, though not nearly as publicized. If anything, it’s more perverse. Very few companies in Silicon Valley will hire executives who express conservative views or support conservative initiatives. Ask Brendan Eich.

Does Mozilla Dumping Its CEO Over Prop. 8/Anti-Gay-Marriage Stance = McCarthyism?

https://reason.com/blog/2014/04/06/does-mozilla-dumping-its-ceo-over-prop-8So last week, Mozilla, the mission-based makers of lagging web browser Firefox, fired its newly appointed CEO Brendan Eich after the dating site OK Cupid publicized Eich’s donation to Prop. 8, a California ballot initiative that barred same-sex marriage in the Golden State.

Conservatives – including those who support gay marriage, such as Hot Air’s Allahpundit – have been howling that Eich’s ouster is an ominous new form of blacklisting that seeks to discredit and silence all opposition to the “hoMOsexual agenda” (as it’s often pronounced by detractors).

A decade ago, I worked with several companies in Silicon Valley. Social media was still relatively new and my company’s products focused on helping organizations use it to reach a broader audience. So many of our clients were in Silicon Valley that we considered opening up an office in the San Francisco Bay area despite insane costs of doing so just to cut down on travel.

One thing because crystal clear after the first few meetings: leftism was not only practiced but it was assumed that anyone dealing with Silicon Valley had to be a progressive. Over lunches with different organizations, the topic would often shift towards whatever politics were high in the news cycle. I’d do my best to avoid them, but my clients were often persistent.

“Thank God Obama’s going to fix this economic mess,” one CEO said to me during a catered lunch in her office.

“We’ll see what happens,” I said neutrally, trying not to betray my feelings. “I’m sure the economy will rebound soon.”

Apparently, I failed at disguising my feelings because the conversation, which up to that point had been robust, turned very quiet. The meetings that were going so well before lunch were suddenly interrupted immediately after lunch when “something came up.”

One of my colleagues called me as I drove back to my hotel to find out what happened. We were fired within minutes of me leaving their office. Later, I learned through another client who had referred us to the this particular CEO that it was my assumed political views that got us fired. “Did you know he was a Republican?” she asked our mutual friend. “Why would you send me a Republican?”

Bottom to top

One major misconception regarding Silicon Valley’s progressive bias is that it’s a result of company culture that trickles down from the top. That may be true at smaller companies, but it’s actually the other way around in bigger ones. That’s not to say progressive employees make their bosses more progressive. But the reason behind most firings at Silicon Valley’s bigger companies is more about backlash from the team than personal feelings from the executives themselves.

In the case of Palmer Luckey, Facebook executives weren’t overly concerned about his $10,000 donation or his political leanings. They cared more about the optics within the company itself. We know this because before firing him, the allegedly tried to get him to publicly support Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson.

Facebook reportedly pressured Palmer Luckey to support a politician

https://www.engadget.com/2018/11/11/facebook-pressured-palmer-luckey-to-support-politician/When Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey left Facebook, neither said exactly why. The implication that it was due to his quiet donation to a group spreading pro-Trump memes. Now, however, we might have a better idea — and it raises questions about Facebook’s behavior as much as it does Luckey’s. The Wall Street Journal has obtained emails and sources indicating that Facebook executives, including Mark Zuckerberg, pressured Luckey to publicly support libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson after word of the donation got out. Moreover, Luckey’s exit wasn’t voluntary. The company placed him on leave and eventually fired him, albeit with an exit package worth “at least” $100 million.

They didn’t really care that he supported President Trump. They feared their employees would revolt when word got out about it. If they could get him to pretend to support Johnson, that could mitigate the damage. After all, supporting a Libertarian isn’t all that bad in the eyes of a progressive. He would just be slightly misguided and probably not very excited about Hillary Clinton. That’s forgivable. But directly supporting President Trump, well, that’s just not acceptable for a top executive in Silicon Valley. Their employees would believe they worked for a company controlled by the prince of darkness if an executive supported Donald Trump.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not suggesting executives at Google, Facebook, Twitter, or any other tech giants aren’t social justice warriors promoting their leftist ideologies. I just don’t think they care about an executive’s ideology as much as they’re concerned about internal company optics. Their snowflake employees won’t stand for it.

It’s unfortunate for conservatives in Hollywood or Silicon Valley, but we shouldn’t fret. Our eyes are open. We know the deck is stacked against us. We just need to keep fighting the good fight, spreading the word, and staying informed.

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Georgia Democrat Rachel Small is either a potential cyber criminal or a helpful volunteer

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Georgia Democrat Rachel Small is either a potential cyber criminal or a helpful volunteer

In one of the most bizarre early-November surprises I can remember, the race for Georgia’s new governor got even more interesting than the virtual tie they’re in going into Tuesday’s election. Rachel Small, a volunteer for the Democratic Party of Georgia’s voter protection hotline, may be involved in a failed hack attempt of the voter registration system. Or she may have simply forwarded an email. It all depends on which side you believe.

Here are the two competing stories Tweeted today.

So, either the FBI is investigating Small (or someone potentially connected to her) or the Georgia Secretary of State’s office is pulling a political stunt ahead of the election.

FBI seeks info on woman identified as Democratic volunteer after Georgia voter system attacked

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/fbi-seeks-info-on-woman-identified-as-democratic-volunteer-after-georgia-voter-system-attacked“We opened an investigation into the Democratic Party of Georgia after receiving information from our legal team about failed efforts to breach the online voter registration system and My Voter Page,” Broce wrote in a statement. “We are working with our private sector vendors and investigators to review data logs.”

Kemp’s campaign added “the Democrats tried to expose vulnerabilities” in Georgia’s registration procedures.

“This was a 4th quarter Hail Mary pass that was intercepted in the end zone,” Kemp’s communications director Ryan Mahoney said. “These power-hungry radicals should be held accountable for their criminal behavior.”

My Take

This is definitely a case of political posturing for the sake of the election. The only question is whether it’s the Democrats or Republicans who are doing the posturing. At this point, there’s simply not enough data to tell.

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