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President Joe Biden's United States of America

lenaitch

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I'm wondering if this is some new wave, or Chinese ballooning has be going on for a while and NORAD has been aware but never publicly released it. If they assess them as not a threat they might have just let them pas through. We didn't know about the last one until somebody photographed it and posted it on social media.

The public justification for this shoot-down was it was flying at an altitude that could pose a danger to commercial air traffic (~40K')
 

Northern Light

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I'm wondering if this is some new wave, or Chinese ballooning has be going on for a while and NORAD has been aware but never publicly released it. If they assess them as not a threat they might have just let them pas through. We didn't know about the last one until somebody photographed it and posted it on social media.

The public justification for this shoot-down was it was flying at an altitude that could pose a danger to commercial air traffic (~40K')

It was publicly disclosed that the Chinese had sent 3 balloons across during the Trump presidential term of office. None were shot down. The official line is that they went 'undetected at the time' I find that line somewhat suspect.......


 
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lenaitch

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It was publicly disclosed that the Chinese had sent 3 balloons across during the Trump presidential term of office. None were shot down. The official line is that they went 'undetected at the time' I find that line somewhat suspect.......


Ok, if they went undetected then, how do they know about them now? 'Unreported' perhaps. A part of me understands how they could possibly go undetected. There's a whole lot of sciency stuff such as reflectivity and radar cross-section; beam geometry, absorption, clutter, and on and on. Do NORAD radars have filter settings such as speed to block out clutter. Of course, we will likely never know. One of the 'failings' of 9-11 was that, at the time, NORAD radar coverage was outward from the continent and the integration/relationship with FAA/NavCan was weak. No doubt there are lessons learned from this

Edit for grammar.
 
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Northern Light

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This could easily go in our Tech Hub or Financial Centre threads:

But I'll place it here:


Largest U.S. bank failure since the '08 financial crisis.

SVB was heavy into the venture capital market and providing lines of credit to many start-ups and tech players in California, as well as some fairly affluent individuals.

The U.S. regulator (FDIC) is stepping as receiver and insures the first 250k of each deposit. What will happen w/the uninsured deposits and lines of credit etc. is TBD.

***

My initial assumption here is that I don't see one of Canadian banks going for a pick-up here, as none are specialized in this field really.

However, I gather the failure is impacting the share price of other U.S. regional banks this afternoon, and that may well see some late Friday meetings on Bay street about going shopping on Banker's Black Friday.
 

W. K. Lis

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Bet Florence, Florida does NOT have a replica of Michelangelo's David in Florence, Italy. Can't confirm if Florence, Ontario has a replica or not (see link).

See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Replicas_of_Michelangelo%27s_David

Is the David porn? Come see, Italians tell Florida parents

From link.

1000.webp

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi speak during a press conference in front of Michelangelo's "David statue" after their bilateral summit in Florence, Italy, on Jan. 23, 2015. The head of Florence’s Galleria del’Accademia on Sunday March 26, 2023 invited the parents and students of a Florida charter school to visit and see Michelangelo’s “David,” after the school principal was forced to resign following parental complaints that an image of the nude Renaissance masterpiece was shown to a sixth-grade art class. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni, File)

The Florence museum housing Michelangelo’s Renaissance masterpiece the David on Sunday invited parents and students from a Florida charter school to visit after complaints about a lesson featuring the statue forced the principal to resign.

Florence Mayor Dario Nardella also tweeted an invitation for the principal to visit so he can personally honor her. Confusing art with pornography was “ridiculous,” Nardella said.

The board of the Tallahassee Classical School pressured Principal Hope Carrasquilla to resign last week after an image of the David was shown to a sixth-grade art class. The school has a policy requiring parents to be notified in advance about “controversial” topics being taught.

The incredulous Italian response highlighted how the U.S. culture wars are often perceived in Europe, where despite a rise in right-wing sentiment and governance, the Renaissance and its masterpieces, even its naked ones, are generally free of controversy. Sunday’s front page of the Italian daily publication Corriere della Sera featured a cartoon by its leading satirist depicting David with his genitals covered by an image of Uncle Sam and the word “Shame.”

Carrasquilla believes the board targeted her after three parents complained about a lesson including a photo of the David, a 5-meter tall (17 foot) nude marble sculpture dating from 1504. The work, reflecting the height of the Italian Renaissance, depicts the Biblical David going to fight Goliath armed only with his faith in God.
Carrasquilla has said two parents complained because they weren’t notified in advance that a nude would be shown, while a third called the iconic statue pornographic.

Carrasquilla said in a phone interview Sunday that she is “very honored” by the invitations to Italy and she may accept.

“I am totally, like, wow,” Carasquilla said. “I’ve been to Florence before and have seen the David up close and in person, but I would love to go and be a guest of the mayor.”

Cecilie Hollberg, director of the Galleria dell’Accademia, where the David resides, expressed astonishment at the controversy.

“To think that David could be pornographic means truly not understanding the contents of the Bible, not understanding Western culture and not understanding Renaissance art,” Hollberg said in a telephone interview.

She invited the principal, school board, parents and student body to view the “purity” of the statue.

Tallahassee Classical is a charter school. While it is taxpayer-funded and tuition-free, it operates almost entirely independently of the local school district and is sought out by parents seeking an alternative to the public school curriculum.

About 400 students from kindergarten through 12th grade attend the three-year-old institution, which is now on its third principal. It follows a curriculum designed by Hillsdale College, a conservative Christian school in Michigan frequently consulted by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on educational issues.

Barney Bishop, chairman of Tallahassee Classical’s school board, has told reporters that while the photo of the statue played a part in Carrasquilla’s ouster, it wasn’t the only factor. He has declined to elaborate, while defending the decision.

“Parents are entitled to know anytime their child is being taught a controversial topic and picture,” Bishop said in an interview with Slate online magazine.

Several parents and teachers plan to protest Carrasquilla’s exit at Monday night’s school board meeting, but Carrasquilla said she isn’t sure she would take the job back even if it were offered.

“There’s been such controversy and such upheaval,” she said. “I would really have to consider, ‘Is this truly what is best?’”

Marla Stone, head of humanities studies at the American Academy in Rome, said the Florida incident was another episode in escalating U.S. culture wars and questioned how the statue could be considered so controversial as to warrant a prior warning.

“What we have here is a moral crusade against the body, sexuality, and gender expression and an ignorance of history,” Stone said in an email. “The incident is about fear, fear of beauty, of difference, and of the possibilities embedded in art.”

Michelangelo Buonarroti sculpted the David between 1501-1504 after being commissioned by the Cathedral of Florence. The statue is the showpiece of the Accademia, and helps draw 1.7 million visitors each year to the museum.

“It is incredibly sought-after by Americans who want to do selfies and enjoy the beauty of this statue,” Director Hollberg said.

The museum, like many in Europe, is free for student groups. There was no indication that any trip would be subsidized by the city or museum. ___

Spencer reported from Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
 
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W. K. Lis

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Meanwhile, in America, their gun non-control is working as expected. As long as the children don't see statues of naked people.

3 children, 3 adults killed at Christian school in Nashville

From link.

A female shooter wielding two “assault-style” rifles and a pistol killed three students and three adults at a private Christian school in Nashville on Monday in the latest in a series of mass shootings in a country growing increasingly unnerved by bloodshed in schools.

Police said they believe the 28-year-old female shooter was a former student at The Covenant School, a Presbyterian school founded in 2001. Police shot and killed her. Investigators were searching her Nashville-area home.

The attack at The Covenant School — which has about 200 students from preschool through sixth grade, as well as roughly 50 staff members — comes as communities around the nation are reeling from a spate of school violence, including the massacre at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, last year; a first grader who shot his teacher in Virginia; and a shooting last week in Denver that wounded two administrators.

“I was literally moved to tears to see this and the kids as they were being ushered out of the building,” Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake said at an afternoon news conference.

The identities of the deceased and the suspect have not been released. The shooter's motive was also not immediately clear.

President Joe Biden, speaking at an unrelated event at the White House on Monday, called the shooting a “family’s worst nightmare” and implored Congress again to pass a ban on certain semi-automatic weapons.

“It’s ripping at the soul of this nation, ripping at the very soul of this nation,” Biden said.

The suspect’s identity as a woman surprised experts on mass shootings. Female shooters make up only about 5% to 8% of all mass shooters, said Adam Lankford, a criminal justice professor at the University of Alabama who has closely studied the psychology and behavior of mass shooters.

Researchers believe there are three main explanations for why men commit more shootings than women, according to Jonathan Metzl, a professor of sociology and psychiatry at Vanderbilt University who has studied mass shootings for more than a decade.

Metzl listed those explanations as: Men have more testosterone, are socialized to be engaged in violence and own more guns than women.

“There is some story we don’t know here,” Metzl said of the suspected female shooter in Nashville. “From school shootings historically, very often we think that people have some historical connection or emotional connection to the school. There’s an untold story here.”

Monday's tragedy unfolded over roughly 14 minutes. Police received the initial call about an active shooter at 10:13 a.m.

Officers began clearing the first story of the school when they heard gunshots coming from the second level, police spokesperson Don Aaron said during a news briefing.

Two officers from a five-member team opened fire in response, fatally shooting the suspect at 10:27 a.m., Aaron said. He said there were no police officers present or assigned to the school at the time of the shooting because it is a church-run school.

The Covenant School's victims were pronounced dead at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital and Vanderbilt University Medical Center. One officer had a hand wound from cut glass.

Other students walked to safety Monday, holding hands as they left their school surrounded by police cars, to a nearby church to be reunited with their parents.

Rachel Dibble, who was at the church as families reunited in the nearby church, described the scene as everyone being in “complete shock.”

“People were involuntarily trembling,” said Dibble, whose children attend a different private school in Nashville. “The children … started their morning in their cute little uniforms they probably had some Froot Loops and now their whole lives changed today.”

Dr. Shamendar Talwar, a social psychologist from the United Kingdom who is working on an unrelated mental health project in Nashville, raced to the church as soon as he heard news of the shooting to offer help. He said he was one of several chaplains, psychologists, life coaches and clergy inside supporting the families.

“All you can show is that the human spirit that basically that we are all hear together … and hold their hand more than anything else,” he said.

Jozen Reodica heard the police sirens and fire trucks blaring from outside her office building nearby. As her building was placed under lockdown, she took out her phone and recorded the chaos.

“I thought I would just see this on TV,” she said. “And right now, it’s real.”

The Covenant School was founded as a ministry of Covenant Presbyterian Church, according to the school’s website. The school is located in the affluent Green Hills neighborhood just south of downtown Nashville, situated close to the city's top universities and home to the famed Bluebird Café – a beloved spot for musicians and song writers.

Top legislative leaders announced Monday that the GOP-dominant Statehouse would meet briefly later in the evening and delay taking up any legislation.

“In a tragic morning, Nashville joined the dreaded, long list of communities to experience a school shooting,” Mayor John Cooper wrote on Twitter.

Nashville has seen its share of mass violence in recent years, including a Christmas Day 2020 attack where a recreational vehicle was intentionally detonated in the heart of Music City’s historic downtown, killing the bomber, injuring three others and forcing more than 60 businesses to close.
 

Admiral Beez

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Meanwhile, in America, their gun non-control is working as expected.
Even if America enacted reasonable firearms acquisition rules today there’s no way to significantly reduce the estimated five hundred million guns in the US. The only way to curtain gun violence in the US is to address the poverty, hopelessness, gangs, misogyny, mental illness and addiction that lead people to shoot others and themselves.
 

afransen

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Even if America enacted reasonable firearms acquisition rules today there’s no way to significantly reduce the estimated five hundred million guns in the US. The only way to curtain gun violence in the US is to address the poverty, hopelessness, gangs, misogyny, mental illness and addiction that lead people to shoot others and themselves.
A not insignificant part of the problem is the 'gun culture' in the US. Many societies own a great deal of guns, not the least of which is Canada, but we don't worship/fetishize the gun in the same way our American cousins do.
 

Admiral Beez

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A not insignificant part of the problem is the 'gun culture' in the US. Many societies own a great deal of guns, not the least of which is Canada, but we don't worship/fetishize the gun in the same way our American cousins do.
There doesn't necessarily need to be a problem with gun culture. If the issues I mention above can be dealt with the number and cultural devotion to guns doesn't have to led to gun violence.

But some context is necessary. Far more Americans die from automobile collisions than fire arms. In fact gun violence isn't in the top ten causes of death in the US, and if you remove suicide by gun it's not in the top twenty. If you avoid a lifestyle of gangs, drugs and crime you'll likely never be a victim of gun violence in the USA.

Even school shootings, that ubiquitously American white suburban coming of age event need to be taken into context. Since 1999's massacre at Columbine, school shootings have killed a total of 175 victims, an average of 7.3 fatalities per year - which is a little higher than the average 5 fatalities each year at amusement parks. In that time, an average of 650 children die every year in automobile collisions, for a total of 15,600 dead children since Columbine. If I was directing public policy I'd be putting the priority to protecting kids in and around automobiles before (not instead of) protecting them from guns, but before amusement park safety.
 
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afransen

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There doesn't necessarily need to be a problem with gun culture. If the issues I mention above can be dealt with the number and cultural devotion to guns doesn't have to led to gun violence.

But some context is necessary. Far more Americans die from automobile collisions than fire arms. In fact gun violence isn't in the top ten causes of death in the US, and if you remove suicide by gun it's not in the top twenty. If you avoid a lifestyle of gangs, drugs and crime you'll likely never be a victim of gun violence in the USA.

Even school shootings, that ubiquitously American white suburban coming of age event need to be taken into context. Since 1999's massacre at Columbine, school shootings have killed a total of 175 victims, an average of 7.3 fatalities per year - which is a little higher than the average 5 fatalities each year at amusement parks. In that time, an average of 650 children die every year in automobile collisions, for a total of 15,600 dead children since Columbine. If I was directing public policy I'd be putting the priority to protecting kids in and around automobiles before (not instead of) protecting them from guns, but before amusement park safety.
Part of the gun culture is that the solution to school mass shootings is to drill kids on active shooter scenarios, which I think is more harmful than beneficial, and design schools like fortresses. Anything but addressing root causes.

Sam Harris had a podcast on this topic which I thought was very good. I believe it is this one:

 

PinkLucy

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I spend a lot of time in the US and see how pervasive the gun culture is. People keep them in their bedside tables and glove compartments. They honestly think they will use them when a thief breaks into their house. Guns are offered up as a solution for many situations.

And yes, making little ones do active shooter drills is horrifying.
 

PinkLucy

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But some context is necessary. Far more Americans die from automobile collisions than fire arms. In fact gun violence isn't in the top ten causes of death in the US, and if you remove suicide by gun it's not in the top twenty. If you avoid a lifestyle of gangs, drugs and crime you'll likely never be a victim of gun violence in the USA.

Even school shootings, that ubiquitously American white suburban coming of age event need to be taken into context. Since 1999's massacre at Columbine, school shootings have killed a total of 175 victims, an average of 7.3 fatalities per year - which is a little higher than the average 5 fatalities each year at amusement parks. In that time, an average of 650 children die every year in automobile collisions, for a total of 15,600 dead children since Columbine. If I was directing public policy I'd be putting the priority to protecting kids in and around automobiles before (not instead of) protecting them from guns, but before amusement park safety.
Let’s look at the causes of death of children. It’s not just mass shootings or school shootings. https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmc2201761 and https://www.kff.org/global-health-p...earm-mortality-in-the-u-s-and-peer-countries/

“We find that the United States is alone among peer nations in the number of child and teen firearm deaths. In no other similarly large or wealthy country are firearm deaths in the top 4 causes of mortality let alone the number 1 cause of death among children and teens.” (From the second link)
 

afransen

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I spend a lot of time in the US and see how pervasive the gun culture is. People keep them in their bedside tables and glove compartments. They honestly think they will use them when a thief breaks into their house. Guns are offered up as a solution for many situations.

And yes, making little ones do active shooter drills is horrifying.
I think some underestimate the degree of this cultural difference. It just is not a thing in Canada to think of a gun as a normal solution for self defense, security, or handling conflict. Canada and the US are very similar in so many ways that when we come across some of these areas of major difference it is very jarring/causes culture shock.
 

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