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Stunning news out of France from the prosecutor, where he states the plane crash was a mass murder-suicide.

The co-pilot of the Airbus A320 that crashed on Tuesday, killing 150 people, appears to have deliberately flown the plane into a mountain after locking the flight commander out of the cockpit.

During the last eight minutes of the flight, the co-pilot “voluntarily” carried out actions that led to the destruction of the aircraft, Brice Robin, a French public prosecutor, said on Thursday at a press conference in Marseille.

Robin said the co-pilot could be heard breathing right up until the point of impact, at around 700 km/h, suggesting he had not lost consciousness.

However, he failed to respond to increasingly desperate calls from the commander trying to break down the cockpit door, or air traffic controllers.

Robin named the co-pilot as 28-year-old Andreas Lubitz and outlined the last moments of the doomed plane in a chilling account of his actions.

....

“Alarms went off signalling the aircraft’s proximity to the ground, and we heard the sound of violent blows as if someone is trying to force the door. Just before the final impact we hear the sound of an impact on the (rock) embankment.

“There was no distress signal, no Mayday, Mayday Mayday, received by air traffic control.”

Robin added: “48 hours after the crash ... the interpretation for us is that the co-pilot deliberately refused to open the door of the cockpit to the flight commander, and pushed the button causing a loss of altitude.”

Chilling.
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Given all the news we've been seeing worldwide in the last couple weeks, now would be a good time to revisit this excellent clip from 2012.

JOHN OLIVER: Things are pretty en fuego around here!  But look, I think it's important for us all to pause, and note that it is clearly not the majority of Muslims who are protesting in the streets.  And it's not even the majority of protestors who are getting violent.  And, to put this in context, we should really remember Islam's young age.

JON STEWART: What... it's young...?  Wait, Islam is 1,400 years old!

JOHN OLIVER: Yeah, exactly, Jon.  In religious years, Islam is still just a teenager.  And put it in context.  Think what Christianity was doing when it was only 1,400 years old.

JON STEWART: Oh, no, that's not... (ponders, to audience applause)  I guess....  Yeah.... I guess....

JOHN OLIVER: Exactly.  Bloody Crusades, the Inquisition, execution of heretics.  Christianity's frankly just lucky there weren't cell phones around then to film that shit.  (audience laughter and applause)

....

JOHN OLIVER: The point, Jon, is that we need to be patient with Islam.  They do not have it easy.  Remember, most teenagers have some means of escape from their insecurities.  They smoke pot, they experiment with sex, all-night bacon parties, Reformation.  Muslims can't do any of that stuff right now.

JON STEWART: So you're saying, if we just wait 3 or 400 years....

JOHN OLIVER: Oh, yeah, half a millennium at most.

JON STEWART: And then there'll be peace.

JOHN OLIVER: Peace?!?  What??  Fuck no, Jon!  But if we're lucky, we will finally stop fighting over real or imagined insults to our religions, and go back to fighting over what really matters — natural resources and arbitrary lines on maps!  (wild audience applause)

So not to worry!  Radical Islam will no longer be a problem for us... by the year 2600.  Until then, um........

Video and full transcript below the fold.

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Fox News terrorism "expert" Steven Emerson made quite a splash when he made this bizarre claim.

Non-Muslims do not go to the British city of Birmingham, which has become a “totally Muslim” city, it has been claimed. Speaking on US news channel Fox News, Steven Emerson – who claims to be a “terrorism expert” – also said that gangs of religious police in parts of London beat up people who are not wearing Islamic clothes.

Emerson later apologised for his comments, which he admitted were “totally in error”, and said he was planning to make a donation to the Birmingham Children’s hospital.

....

He said: “In Britain, it’s not just no-go zones, there are actual cities like Birmingham that are totally Muslim where non-Muslims just simply don’t go in.

“And, parts of London, there are actually Muslim religious police that actually beat and actually wound seriously anyone who doesn’t dress according to religious Muslim attire.

According to census data, around 850,000 non-Muslims live in Birmingham, accounting for approximately 80% of the near 1.1 million population of Britain’s second largest city.

Some elected officials in Birmingham got in some jabs as well.
Responding to the controversy, Birmingham City Councillor James McKay said: "We are amazingly diverse, and that's one of the things that makes us brilliant - all this fuss is a reminder of how it's always best to check your facts before getting into a debate.

"Maybe Fox News could come and visit some time, and see for themselves what a great city we have here?"

Edgbaston MP Ms Stuart said Mr Emerson's comments had "no redeeming features".

"I checked whether this was some kind of early April Fool spoof, and then I thought he was talking about Birmingham, Alabama, but then I realised he was just utterly and completely wrong," the Labour MP said.

Then Twitter had some fun with this.  #FoxNewsFacts started trending with many people submitting their own version of Fox News reality.  Some hilarious tweets below the fold.
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Holy fucking shit.  This is happening right now in Paris.  Three gunmen went into the offices of the humor magazine Charlie Hebdo, which ran the cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed back in 2008, and whose same offices were firebombed in 2011.

At least 12 people are dead after three hooded gunmen armed with Kalashnikovs attacked the headquarters of a French satirical magazine and opened fire on journalists and police guards.

The three men - who a police union spokesman described as “commandos” – are now on the run after walking into the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris’s 11th arrondissement at about midday on Wednesday and fleeing in a getaway car driven by a fourth.

The death toll includes 10 journalists and two police officers. At least five people are seriously injured.

Rocco Contento, a spokesman for the Unité police union, said “it was a real butchery” in the building. He said the Charlie Hebdo offices were guarded and protection increased in recent weeks because of fresh threats against the magazine, but the attackers had entered the building intending to kill.

Charlie Hebdo’s offices were firebombed in 2011 after a spoof issue featuring a caricature of the Prophet Mohammed on its cover.

Contento said the attackers had got into a getaway car driven by a fourth man on fleeing the building and drove to Port de Pantin in north-east Paris, where they abandoned the first car and hijacked a second – turning the driver out into the road.

The killers are still on the loose.
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Last night, Bill Maher delivered a strong defense of the Obama presidency and all its accomplishments, chided cowardly Democrats for running away from it, and urging everyone to GO VOTE!

The midterms are here in four days, and Democrats are in big trouble.  Despite the fact that the only idea the Republicans have this election is, "Don't let anybody get you started on rape".  But it didn't have to be this way, if Democratic candidates would just stop throwing their own people and achievements under the bus, and distancing themselves from their own president!  That is never a winning strategy.  Just ask President Al Gore.  (audience murmurs turn to applause)

....

Well, sorry, but the one I feel bad for is Obama.

  • 63 straight months of economic expansion.
  • A depression averted.
  • A deficit reduced by two thirds.
  • A healthcare law that's working and lowering costs.
  • Two women on the Supreme Court.
  • bin Laden's dead.
  • Stock market at record heights.
  • An unemployment rate that dropped from 10.2 to 5.9%.  If you're a Fox News viewer trying to do the math, that's less.  (audience laughter and applause)
  • Gas prices are down.

Is it really that hard a record to get behind?  And yet, the way these Democrats have been distancing themselves from the President, you would think he'd just flown in from Liberia with his lunch in a barf bag.  (audeince laughter)  There are beheading videos with more likes.  (audeince oohs)

Video and full transcript below the fold.
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Last night, Bill Maher delivered a blistering final New Rule about what the matter with Kansas is.

And finally, New Rule: scientists must conduct a study to determine which is easier to distract — a cat with a laser pointer, or the American voter.  (audience applause)

....

This is not just about Kansas.  This is a national disease.  An unholy alliance of easily distracted voters, and a shameful pandering media, which used to have the integrity to filter out shit like this.  But today, what happens is the story ran in the local press, within hours Politico picked it up, and a day later, Meet the Press — yes, Meet the Press — further dignified the story by allowing Grover Norquist to talk about it, to say about Paul Davis that he is "not the kind of person you can ask your sister to vote for".  (audience groans)

....

So let me get this straight, Kansas.  Losing a billion dollars in revenue and having your credit rating downgraded — that, you can afford.  Sam Brownback, who is to governing what Kanye West is to humility (audience laughter), he's tolerable.  But the lap dance guy, that's a bridge too far!

OK, one last question, Kansas.  You do understand — right? — that Paul Davis never touched the stripper, but Sam Brownback fucked your entire state.

Video and full transcript below the fold.
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Last night, Bill Maher delivered what is sure to be a very controversial final New Rule that will surely upset quite a few people here.

91% of Egyptian women have had their clitorises forcibly removed.  98% of Somalian women have.  Ayaan Hirsi Ali grew up in Somalia, and is one of them.  She was scheduled to speak at Yale last week, but the school's atheist organization — my people — complained that she "did not represent the totality of the ex-Muslim experience".  Meaning what?  The women who like mutilation?  You're atheists!  You should be attacking religion, not siding with the people who hold women down and violate them, which apparently you will defend in the name of multiculturalism, and then lose your shit when someone refers to Chaz Bono by the wrong pronoun.  (audience applause)
Video and full transcript below the fold.
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OK, last night's show was so incredible, I had to do a transcript. Jon Stewart blasted the Fox News crew for attacking Obama over his "latte salute," calling them out for their utter hypocrisy. Make this video go viral. Share it on social media. That right-wing acquaintance you know who ranted about it on Facebook? Post this video on his or her wall for EVERY one of the person's friends to see.

9/24/2014:

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE: The first female pilot, piloting for the U.A.E. ... dropped the bombs on ISIS on Monday night.

ERIC BOLLING: Would that be considered "boobs on the ground" or no?

(audience groans and boos)

First of all, forget the rampant sexism in that statement. Second of all, she's a pilot, so whatever gender-specific equipment she might be carrying, it's in the fucking air! (audience laughter) And thirdly, what was the quote that someone said earlier in your program? "These people are putting their lives on the line for us. Show respect."

So fuck you and all your false patriotism. (massive audience cheering and applause)

When Bush took us to war, any criticism was shouted down as treasonous. But a president you don't like has the country poised on the same precipice? No transgression, no matter how immaterial and ridiculous, is too small to cite as evidence that this president isn't as American as you are.

Video and the full relevant part of the transcript below the fold.
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This was an important enough segment I felt I had to provide the full transcript of it for everyone.  On Tuesday night, Jon Stewart returned from vacation to deliver an incredible segment just ripping into Fox News, specifically Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity, for their delusional remarks about the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

SEAN HANNITY (8/25/2014): Well, this weekend, 42 people shot in Chicago.  I don't see the protests, I don't see the anger.

ANDREA TANTAROS (8/23/2014): If I were African-American, I would be outraged that more journalists aren't covering what's happening in Chicago, and more outraged that people like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson don't head to those areas.

Yes!  What could explain the lack of outrage about Al Sharpton and his ilk not doing anything about black-on-black violence in Chicago?
ABC7 (7/10/2014): With Chicago's violence making national headlines, a group led by the Reverend Al Sharpton plans to convene an anti-violence summit of national civil rights leaders here.
Oh, that's right, because African-American leaders did hold a summit about that in November.  And have met at least three times in the city just in the last 13 months.  Which is not to say it's been effective, but taken along with the President's My Brother's Keeper initiative, which attempts to address this violence, and the countless vigils and marches within these violence-torn communities means they are trying, actually, to do something.  You see, you being ignorant of those attempts doesn't mean the issue itself is being ignored.  The same way that when it snows where you live doesn't mean the world isn't getting hotter.  (massive audience cheering and applause)
Video and full transcript below the fold.
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On Thursday, Jon Stewart tore into the House Republicans for suing Obama over Obamacare implementation.

7/30/2014:

REP. RICH NUGENT, R-FL: Our Founding Fathers understood the dangers of having a president who not only enforced the laws, but made them.

SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER, R-OH: Are you willing to let anyone tear apart what our Founders have built?

REP. TOM RICE, R-SC: We cannot stand by and watch the president shred our Constitution.

REP. CANDICE MILLER, R-MI: That type of action amounts to tyranny, Mr. Speaker. Tyranny.

Yes, it's tyranny, Obama's a tyrant. We all know throughout history, the only way to depose a tyrant is via a civil lawsuit. (audience laughter) I think I remember Caesar's famous last words, "Et sue, Brute?"
Video and full transcript below the fold.
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Last night, Jon Stewart introduced us to the concept of corporate inversion, the latest way American corporations are acting wholly un-American.

Wait a minute, when was the Citizens United decision? That was 2010, right? That explains it. Corporations have only been people for like four years. They're toddlers.

And by giving in every time they throw a tantrum and threaten to run away from home, we're spoiling these bastards. If we're not careful, these corporations will grow up feral, and turn into something even worse.

Yeah. (audience laughter and applause) If we don't start telling corporations no, they're going to just end up peeing in buckets and trying to sneak monkeys into Germany. Maybe it's time to tell corporations if you want to live under our roof, you play by our rules! So no, Mylan, you can't go to Holland! You're grounded!

Video and full transcript below the fold.
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Last night, Stephen Colbert took aim at the Sarah Palin Channel.

I have always been a huge fan of Sarah Palin. She's a strong leader with a proven history of selflessness. I mean, in the midst of her 2008 campaign, she took the time to help out a struggling senior with severely impaired judgment. (audience laughter)

....

And remember, Sarah Palin's channel is SarahPalinChannel.com. Not thesarahpalinchannel.com, because we bought that one today. (wild audience cheering and applause) And, it's free!

Video and full transcript below the fold.
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