CLOUD: PLAXO bites the dust

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Dear Plaxo User,

After 15 years of helping customers enrich their address books, we regret to announce that we will be shutting down the Plaxo service at the end of the day on December 31, 2017.

We will begin purging user data on January 1, 2018. If you would like to export your address book data, please do so before that date. Instructions for how to export your data are available here.

Thank you for subscribing to Plaxo. We appreciate the support you have given us over the years and we wish you all the best.

– The Plaxo Team

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GOVEROTRAGEOUS: 73 Percent of World’s Dictatorships? Seriously!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

2017-Oct-01

http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/42020-us-provides-military-assistance-to-73-percent-of-world-s-dictatorships

US Provides Military Assistance to 73 Percent of World’s Dictatorships
Saturday, September 23, 2017 — By Rich Whitney, Truthout | News Analysis

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For decades, the American people have been repeatedly told by their government and corporate-run media that acts of war ordered by their president have been largely motivated by the need to counter acts of aggression or oppression by “evil dictators.” We were told we had to invade Iraq because Saddam Hussein was an evil dictator. We had to bomb Libya because Muammar Gaddafi was an evil dictator, bent on unleashing a “bloodbath” on his own people. Today, of course, we are told that we should support insurgents in Syria because Bashar al-Assad is an evil dictator, and we must repeatedly rattle our sabers at North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and Russia’s Vladimir Putin because they, too, are evil dictators.

This is part of the larger, usually unquestioned mainstream corporate media narrative that the US leads the “Western democracies” in a global struggle to combat terrorism and totalitarianism and promote democracy.

I set out to answer a simple question: Is it true? Does the US government actually oppose dictatorships and champion democracy around the world, as we are repeatedly told?

The truth is not easy to find, but federal sources do provide an answer: No. According to Freedom House’s rating system of political rights around the world, there were 49 nations in the world, as of 2015, that can be fairly categorized as “dictatorships.” As of fiscal year 2015, the last year for which we have publicly available data, the federal government of the United States had been providing military assistance to 36 of them, courtesy of your tax dollars. The United States currently supports over 73 percent of the world’s dictatorships!

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Does this upset anyone else?

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