Area for all other political discussion
:sunglasses: 54.5 % :grinning: 18.2 % 😟 9.1 % :shit: 18.2 %
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By Bones McCoy
Membership Days Posts
#539009
Catkins wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:59 pm
Zheleznyakov, the scientist who accidentally poisoned himself with Novichok in the 90s lived for a few years afterwards (albeit as pretty much a vegetable). So it's known to be survivable if the dose isn't too large.

Another thing to consider is that the Skirpals received almost immediate medical treatment, with their doctors having access to some of the best research in the world.

In 2006 I was potentially exposed to rabies, and experienced what happens when one is the potential source of a public health emergency! Once the Health Protection Agency was alerted the treatment was couriered by emergency motorbike and started within 2.5 hours. It was incredibly well organised. A couple of weeks later the Litvinenko poisoning happened and I went from being previously unaware of the HPA, to seeing it in the news every day as it supervised his treatment and monitored me to make sure I didn't go all '28 days later'. (I didn't, but was known for years as 'rabies woman' at my GP surgery). They'll be doing the same with the Skirpals.

The HPA has worldwide networks across health, defence, and academia and they are prepped for a situation like this.
Dr McCoy is fairly senior in the Scottish equivalent (Yep all health stuff is devolved).
One of her greatest regrets of the past year has been watching the international links in those networks being thrown on the bonfire of the Brexits.
Catkins liked this
 
By The Weeping Angel
Membership Days Posts
#539026
How Russia invented fake news.

https://www.vox.com/world/2018/4/5/1717 ... thy-snyder
President Donald Trump claims he coined the phrase “fake news.” (He didn’t.) But the actual art of “fake news” was pioneered by the Russians in the 1990s and 2000s, and they used it to try to help Trump win the 2016 presidential election.

This is the argument Yale historian Timothy Snyder makes in his new book, The Road to Unfreedom. According to Snyder, it was Russian leaders who first mastered “fake news” in the digital era, and they did it as part of a broader strategy to disorient their own society. That strategy goes something like this: Use the internet and TV to flood society with misinformation, demonize the institutions charged with uncovering facts, and then exploit the confusion that results.

This, Snyder argues, is how Russian oligarchs in the Putin era control citizens: They cultivate enough chaos so people become cynical about public life and, eventually, about truth itself. In the 2010s, Russia began to deploy these techniques abroad as a means of destabilizing Western countries. In Trump, they found a particularly useful tool, someone they could use to stoke America’s internal divisions and subvert democracy.
 
By spoonman
Membership Days Posts
#539030
Littlejohn's brain wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:41 pm
How Russia invented fake news.

https://www.vox.com/world/2018/4/5/1717 ... thy-snyder
President Donald Trump claims he coined the phrase “fake news.” (He didn’t.) But the actual art of “fake news” was pioneered by the Russians in the 1990s and 2000s, and they used it to try to help Trump win the 2016 presidential election.

This is the argument Yale historian Timothy Snyder makes in his new book, The Road to Unfreedom. According to Snyder, it was Russian leaders who first mastered “fake news” in the digital era, and they did it as part of a broader strategy to disorient their own society. That strategy goes something like this: Use the internet and TV to flood society with misinformation, demonize the institutions charged with uncovering facts, and then exploit the confusion that results.

This, Snyder argues, is how Russian oligarchs in the Putin era control citizens: They cultivate enough chaos so people become cynical about public life and, eventually, about truth itself. In the 2010s, Russia began to deploy these techniques abroad as a means of destabilizing Western countries. In Trump, they found a particularly useful tool, someone they could use to stoke America’s internal divisions and subvert democracy.
I know from watching Newswipe years ago that there was a short feature about this where a subset of princples in the "art" world was applied to the media by someone appointed by Putin in order to disorientate and confuse people to the point of asking just what exactly is real anymore. It's probably somewhere on YT, will need to take a look.
 
By cycloon
Membership Days Membership Days Posts
#539078
I find this issue of trust and sincerity absolutely fascinating. It strikes me there are varying registers of response to it, on the 'negative' side:

1) Abject cynicism, leading to nihilism at worst, or resigned fatalism at best - see 'they're all the same'.
  • 1a) Side note: see also vigorous cynicism, leading to, ultimately, paralysis via confusion and contradiction. This has always existed to some extent, as lies have always been told, but it bleeds into the 'nothing is true world' a bit when we get superficial/shallow understanding of the actual issues at hand, which in theory are committed to a true idea about something but in fact are shams which, if probed, fall apart; often tied to 'mainstream' movements (speaking broadly), such as political parties and particular figures. Not necessarily 'post-truth', but bleeds into it through fatigue and resignation as much as wilful ignorance and polarisation.
2) Abject intellectual bankruptcy (maybe for all of them) through total submersion in conspiracy theories, often masquerading as a grotesque parody of scepticism - see Facebook or Twitter.
3) Abjectly cynical use of the doubt for particular, even ideological, goals - see the Russian government.

All thrive where this kind of disinformation/misinformation has always thrived, in the necessary doubt that all aspects of human life and activity cannot help be touched by. How do you know?

It's also worth pointing out that we are not 'post-truth' in the sense truth is not seen as a good.

/ramble

More ramble. Listening to Talking Politics, they're talking about the thrilling world of privacy policies. A chap related an anecdote where a security company offered wifi, for free, in a popular area of London. Buried in the T&Cs were 'I give you rights to my first born child', or words similar to that. A joke, but a very powerful one. Consent is given on trust, yet there is not one guarantee (beyond certain legal frameworks, which are in themselves alien/arcane to most of us; my saying this is based purely on trust that there is!) that that trust is necessarily deserved or safe to give. Amazing, when you think about it. People do not read that which they are supposed to read, and everyone knows this and yet adheres to the standard - until the cynic appears. Ditto public scandal: everyone knows corruption exists, but its reveal is treated as a moral event of great significance, which of course, it is, but not in the 'good' vs 'evil' way we like to think. The ultra-cynic, for me, and the real danger, is not the one who divides things into good vs evil, but the one who doesn't care a jot for either, but uses the moral concern of others to destroy what it wants to destroy, and build what it wants to build.
Timbo liked this
By visage
Membership Days Posts
#539083
It wouldnt surprise me if the Russian tweet farms arent pushing both sides of the argument simultaneously.

It seems that a kind of intellectual paralysis created by a whirlwind of argument and counter-argument would be a lot more valuable to them than a an atmosphere of consensus.
 
By The Weeping Angel
Membership Days Posts
#539096
Surprisingly it turns out there's an answer to why aren't they both dead yet?

http://www.politics.co.uk/comment-analy ... n-the-spot
An interesting question has been raised. If nerve agents -and in particular the so-called Novichok agents - are so deadly, why didn’t Sergie and Yulia Skripal die immediately? Instead, as countless internet conspiracy theorists have pointed out, both the daughter and father appear to be out of critical condition. This is a valid question that deserves an answer.

First, it is important to get the terminology correct. 'Nerve agents' are chemical substances that interfere with the chemistry of the human nervous system by binding with an enzyme called acetylcholinesterase. By this definition, a number of chemical warfare agents and a number of pesticides are included in the family of compounds known as nerve agents.

Nerve agents are not toxins by the technical definition. Toxins are poisons produced from animal, plant, or microbial sources. Snake venom is a toxin. Sarin and VX and Novichoks, being products of wholly man-made origin, are not toxins. The term 'nerve gas' is not useful, either, as the nerve agents are all liquids or solids at room temperature.
By Andy McDandy
Membership Days Membership Days Posts
#539137
So in other words, journalists and politicians both favour hyperbole over dry reporting of facts because it's easier to sell to thick mouth breathing Sun readers.
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