Usually, in this blog, I exclusively address political issues. In this case I will make an exception. I have a direct interest and limited expertise on the topic. I have been running a large, recognizable, international guild in the World of Warcraft universe of private servers, which is not retail Blizzard, but it is a concentration of the hardcore gamerboys that represent the strange culture of WoW consumers. That guild is called Logic, and we have existed in the private server world of WoW for something like 8 years. We are International— from all parts of the world, but centered in that stronghold of private WoW servers, Europe.
The lawsuit filed against Activision Blizzard Inc., isn’t a surprise to me at all, or to any of us. It outlines systemic issues in: sexual harassment, unequal workplace treatments, and an ongoing “Fratboy” atmosphere. The particulars outlined in the lawsuit…are beyond horrendous. Beyond horrendous.
This isn’t an ephemeral “Me too” moment. This isn’t simply a list of addressable wrongdoing. This isn’t an isolated boys-club business culture. It is a reflection of a subsection of young adults we are producing and have been for years. There’s a steady stream of internet-era produced young men that are: isolated, misogynistic, incel, cosplay, gamerboys that are literally incapable of supporting a healthy workplace, a healthy relationship, or even a healthy life for themselves.
In our guild, which has touched thousands of people over the years, we have been in constant battle with the endless onslaught of lowest common denominator “jokes”. Jokes about rape, molesting children, murder, gay-bashing, and racism every day, day after day, month after month, year after year. It never ends. It never stops and it’s generally well received by the international populace.
We are not surprised by this lawsuit.
The internal, company responses to the California suit from Blizzard president, J Allen Brack, and Activision president, Rob Kostich, are of the useless, mushy, generalized type, “We don’t accept this…,” and, “Doesn’t represent our values…,” blah blah blah one would expect. The response from Fran Townsend, Activision Blizzard’s Chief Compliance Officer, was of a different sort. It was deflection and denial. Not good.
Since the announcement of the suit, a subreddit was created to keep track of all of the corroborating allegations made by current and former Activision Blizzard employees. That subreddit has become so overwhelming, it isn’t even possible to keep track of all of the supporting claims made. It’s not a fucking joke.
Activision Blizzard employees will be striking tomorrow to demand a more assertive response from the top and immediate action taken concerning workplace conditions and inequality. Being mushy or defensive is not going to cut it. We can assume the long term implications of the suit for Activision Blizzard are going to be of great consequence. I suggest they settle, pay their fines, and get their shit together.
The WoW community’s unhappiness with Activision Blizzard is well documented and long-running. That is a separate but, as of this moment, not inseparable situation. I think I speak for most of us when I say: burn.
I want to make this very clear: this is not an isolated situation. We have a very large issue in our society to deal with above and beyond the shitty mismanagement of Activision Blizzard. This is the tip of an iceberg that has been accelerating in formation for over a decade and extends well into our future.
I wanted to get a basic understanding of how the Pennsylvania Fraudit was taking shape. Rather quickly, I was distracted by the story of a strange audit that already took place in Pennsylvania, that I had forgotten about. Maybe you did too.
Pennsylvania already had a mini Fraudit for the 2020 election cycle, before the Arizona Fraudit, and everything about it stunk.
Do you remember? When it happened, it wasn’t super big news because… well, it just seemed so ridiculous and unimportant in the sea of awfulness we were enduring at the time.
This unbelievable story goes a little something like this(I’m not going to name every player here because it gets too confusing. I find it clearer to just stick to their title/position. if you want you can try to piece most of it together from here and here):
On December 29, 2020, PA State Senator Doug Mastriano requested officials in Fulton County Pa, to allow a company called Wake Technology Services, Inc. to perform an audit of the 2020 elections in their county. Mastriano did not make the request in person. State Senator Judy Ward, who represents that rural county, did on his behalf.
At that time, Mastriano was already a well known proponent of the “Stop the Steal” Campaign in Pa. He would also later participate in the January 6th insurrection. The company Wake Technology Services, Inc., had zero experience doing election audits. Starting to sound familiar? It gets much much worse.
On Dec. 29, Fulton County’s 3 county commissioners were not in agreeance in letting Wake inspect the Dominion voting machines. The 2 Republicans said, sure. The 1 Democrat said, only if nothing is moved and she was present. At the next Commissioners meeting on Jan. 5, The 1 Democrat states, in minutes of that meeting, that somehow the inspection had already happened on Dec. 31, without her knowledge or consent.
There was no contract signed between the County Commissioners and the inspecting company Wake.
It was never discussed exactly who was paying for it, or where the money was coming from.
One of the GOP Commissioners, addressed the issue by saying, he had no idea who was paying for it.
That same GOP Commissioner said, about the reasoning for the inspection and audit was, “We didn’t do it because we thought we did something wrong; we did it to prove Fulton County didn’t do anything wrong.”
On Jan. 12, the commission met again to discussing manually going through the ballots. The Democrat did not approve under any condition and said whomever was interested, should go through the correct legal processes. The motion passed, 2-1. The only people present for the audits were those two GOP commissioners, their tech guy, and Wake’s Staff.
Fulton County is a small, rural county in Pennsylvania. It’s GOP land and pretty much insignificant. Only 8019 people voted there in the 2020 Election. Trump won easily 6,824 to 1085. There were no allegations of any fraud in the county. No challenges. There were no discrepancies. There was nothing. I cannot find anywhere where State Senator Doug Mastriano ever justified this audit.
“We didn’t do it because we thought we did something wrong; we did it to prove Fulton County didn’t do anything wrong.” ???
May 3, 2021, Dominion contacted Pennsylvania’s acting secretary of the commonwealth, Veronica Degraffenreid, to remind her that some unaccredited and uncertified people had been at their machines in Fulton County, which was a breach of contract. The county had to lease new machines for an additional cost of 25k after that was made plain. During the contract dispute between Dominion and the County Solicitor, Dominion mentioned, so…like, where’s this audit report? It’s May. Whatever happened to that?
In response to a public records request from the Arizona Mirror, the county confirmed on May 6 that it had no reports from the company. A week later, the county posted a copy of the Wake TSI’s report, dated Feb. 19, on its website.
Around May 13th, this completely unnecessary report was public. It was actually completed Feb. 16, but never submitted and no one from the county had bothered to ask about it. ?
It’s not worth reading for now. I would say, save this and see how much the Arizona Fraudit report ends up looking like it. You know what I mean? Considering this same company, Wake Technology Services, Inc., went on to work in the Arizona Fraudit, after this batshit crazy audit in PA. Wake then left the Arizona Fraudit with their work only partially done. They allowed the contract to expire and never came back.
Wake Technology Services, Inc. was hired to work in the Arizon Audit by, the Kraken Lady, Sidney Powell’s nonprofit organization, Defending the Republic. Which brings us to the document below. I know Jeremy Duda came across this, but I don’t know when. I can only presume it was around the early May date when Dominion and AZ Mirror started querying about the audit results.
This piece of crap is the “official” request to start the Fulton County Audit from Mastriano. It says, it is “contracted to Defending the Republic”. Which is Sidney Powell’s nonprofit. In other words, the Kraken Lady is the one that paid for the Fulton County Pa Audit.
The audit itself says- nothing was found and we entirely expected nothing to be found. It lists some 5 points that they would consider something that needed to be looked at, as they could lead to problems in the future. For whatever anyone thinks their opinion is worth.
This exercise was a mess from the beginning to the end. But, isn’t it clear this was a dry run for the Arizona Fraudit? And that’s why no one ever gave an explanation as to why it happened at all. Did the “Stop the Steal” folks actually apply anything they might have learned? It sure doesn’t seem like it.
Now consider, the same State Senator Doug Mastriano is trying to replicate this disaster over again in PA.
I think we do need some new election laws in Pennsylvania. Not voter suppression laws. We need State Legislator suppression laws. I can’t believe how easily this was undertaken with no oversight and not a care in the world.
Earlier we discussed the largest teacher’s union, The NEA’s, temporarily declared stance on CRT as stated in a recent union resolution. Now it has come to light that the second largest teacher’s union, the American Federation of Teachers(AFT) also had, in June, declared a muddled stance regarding CRT. This tweet was supported in some way, with a video created by GMA, not the union.
Later, this video was reposted by the very man who created this make-believe CRT-in-K12 issue, Christopher Rufo, as proof that it is taught in K12. Rufo is the architect of the CRT-in-K12 narrative. I’d post for you his tweet about how this video is proof that CRT is taught in K12, but I can’t, since he blocked me. It should suffice to say, this is what Christopher Rufo is:
This is where all of the CRT insanity is coming from. This is why we have screaming, deranged, lunatics showing up at schoolboard meetings. Below is the video.
Declaring how teaching CRT is/would be useful, is a major no-no in this climate. There is literally no reason to champion it. It is already taught in a select few Universities; it is NOT taught in K12, but it’s easily assumed it must be by this lazy tweet.
It should be apparent, this video is not a crafted message from the teacher’s union. This is a slapped together GMA production making a half-assed attempt to jump into the issue of CRT in Florida. This GMA video is specifically about Florida. Why the AFT selected this as somehow promoting their ideals, I have no fucking clue.
Recently the ATF has pushed videos, releases, and social media messages that: CRT is NOT taught in K12 and that this entire false narrative is created to try to stop any information in systemic racism from being taught anywhere in the US. That is the correct message.
This should have been the effing message all along. But both unions, and politicians, liberal media leaders, and SJW up and down the effing line, are yelling and screaming in response to the narrative, “OH YEAH??!!! Well we’re going to teach CRT in K12 then! We need CRT in k12! RAAAAAAAAAA!” Thereby giving the false narrative credence, and hardening the exact effing battle line that was wanted all along. The battle line from which Rufo and all those following his lead will now say, “See, told you so.” What he said is now correct in the minds of conspiracy theory Trumpublicans. Furthermore, now that it is established, that this disease has infected the land, we need to find all of the ideas which feel similar. Ideas which in their felt similarity are surely the same, and those must be eradicated as well, when those where exactly the target all along. Everything we don’t like is CRT. We need to write new laws, turnover schoolboards and fire teachers. We need cameras in classrooms. Desantis’ CRT rule and law to thought police teachers and students, is the correct and righteous approach.
Grats to all involved.
Now the video above.
Off the top, this video is about banning CRT in Florida. -Not about teaching CRT. The newscaster says, “The Critical Race Theory Movement.” It’s a movement now apparently. FFS.
The onsite reporter opens with extolling the virtues of CRT. The he segues into discussing the 1619 project out of nowhere, as if these are rightfully joined together. Next he says, “Critical Race Theory is the umbrella term.” Instead of saying what he meant, “Critical Race Theory has been used as the umbrella term to tie all all things anti-racism together.” I’m just baffled. I mean, so far this is a perfectly orchestrated propaganda video for Christopher Rufo. I understand GMA’s good intentions. But this is more than a “disservice,” it’s a fucking disaster.
Next the video cuts to a clip of the AFT’s Secretary Treasurer. I suspect that because he’s in the video, that was AFT’s motivation for tweeting it. Not much thought put into this. He describes what teachers do in schools. They “create magic,” and impart knowledge on a wide range of subjects. He doesn’t say anything about CRT.
To the rage-enduced masses, this tweet and video prove, not only that CRT is taught in K12, somewhere (who knows where) in the nation, but that it’s a movement, it’s an umbrella term for all things anti-racism, and it is exactly the same as 1619. When the point of the video was supposed to be, CRT is banned in Florida but GMA did a total hackjob in trying to give it context.
Not only is CRT not taught in Florida, it’s specifically legislated that it can’t be.
CRT is not taught in K12, but the larger teacher’s union, the NEA, did agree it should be able to be mentioned in schools. CRT is not taught in K12, but the AFT and GMA produced a propaganda video in June for Christopher Rufo that supports all of his wildest dreams.
I don’t care about Tucker Carlson. He’s a prick that says prick-y things. Who cares. But this narrative he’s frantically pushing about the NSA spying on him, is over the top, even for Tucker. And the guy literally looks scared. For reals and true. Look at this Maria Bartiromo video clip in this Mediaite article from earlier this morning. Dude is scared. Also, what the fuck happened to Maria? She enunciates like Judge Jeannine now. Remember when she used to be the hot business chick on CNBC?
What we do know is: Tucker is the writer, director, and actor in this entire narrative. He is the creator. All we can do is measure Tucker’s story to itself. As it stands, there is no one we can condemn, and no actions to demand, because this is completely nothing. To Tucker, it’s really super-duper important, but it’s nothing. Nothing until outside forces enter the scene. It’s only a story right now and that’s totally fine.
Let’s examine his story’s narrative.
He says he was at a funeral in DC last week, and accidently ran into someone who said, “I have a message for you,” and then “the person” repeated back to him details from Carlson’s emails and texts. Also, the NSA has this information “…and that was proven by the person repeating back the details of the texts and emails.” So the person saying it, proves the NSA has the information? So the “person” works for the NSA, or someone in the DoD? That’s kinda what he’s implying, isn’t it. Could be true or not, but he is certainly implying it.
Carlson then says he learned yesterday, that the NSA has leaked this information to other journalists (plural), and the information will come out soon. Carlson got a call from a journalist whom he knows and likes, who said as much. So that’s not the person who is going to be leaking it. We now have three to four or even more different people aware of the story.
This is starting to sound pretty sloppy for the NSA isn’t it? Like the NSA is shopping this story all over the place? Nah, come on Tucker.
Tucker says, the reason the NSA is leaking this, apparently all over the place, is because they want to discredit him. They want to threaten opposition journalists. Meh.
He says the NSA never denied it. Although they had.
Carlson goes on to say he talked to NSA officials (plural), and this was confirmed. He had a “shouting match with NSA officials.” Who used artful terms, that he is not a target of an investigation. This fits nicely with the above NSA rebuttal. He wasn’t targeted, and the NSA does in fact spy on foreign officials. Those aren’t statements in conflict.
So he has had communications with someone about something…and that person was a target of the NSA. In the course of investigating their target, they came across Tucker Carlson communications. Right? This is what Tucker Carlson is really, clearly implying. We can all see that.
Interesting to note, with Maria, Tucker says, that it’s known that the NSA gives information to the Justice Dept., in order for them to charge American citizens with crimes. He doesn’t Blame Biden, he says the NSA is a free operator. So whatever has happened, started during the Trump Admin, right? He both says, it’s a political operation for “opposition journalists” and the Biden Admin isn’t the one directing it, which are two statements in conflict. So if it is in fact the NSA, they or the DOJ didn’t act on it under Trump. Right? He’s very much stuck on the idea that the DOJ is going to use this information.
Is this hinting that he is going to be charged with something, or that something uncomfortable is going to be leaked by other journalists. It’s hard to figure where Tucker is going with this. These two things don’t coexist well. Unless it is going to be leaked *and* he is going to be charged nearly simultaneously. Really, really doubt that.
Tucker is bemoaning the fact that “the press” isn’t protecting him on the behalf of journalism. No one has any fucking idea what the fuck you’re talking about Tucker, how can others protect you from what is not clear, based on the sounds coming out of your mouth? When whatever documents there are come out, maybe then. No clue.
Now tonight’s video of Tucker on his own show:
Again Tucker is blaming everyone else for not protecting him. Now he seems more of the mind to blame the Biden administration, something he didn’t do earlier with Maria.
Sources in the intel community told at least one reporter in Washington about Tucker’s emails. So this is yet another named person(s) who have the information.
Someone he implies is in the NSA or DoD.
2. A journalist friend.
3. Some unknown “journalists” plural.
4. NSA officials he shouted at.
5. A source in the Intel community (and by extension that reporter who might be one of the above or not)
-A lot of people.
Now it’s starting to get interesting. Tucker’s going to tie it up for us and make it a little clearer.
Tucker goes on to describe how he contacted “some people” about an interview with Putin. He lets slips, “Emailing with people who know Putin, are you?” as he mocks what he pretends is the NSA’s position.
He says Putin does evil things, so of course any American journalist who might want to interview Putin would be painted as evil as well, and that’s how the NSA plans on discrediting Tucker Carlson. Because he’s evil enough to talk to an evil man.
This is just incredible bullshit. That he felt the need to contact Putin through special connections other than the vast resources he has at his fingertips at Fox? Special connections, which he admitted are people who personally know Putin.
Interviewing Putin happens to be a big fucking deal that Americans love to see, because it’s rare and we WANT an American journalist asking Putin the tough questions. We know that’s effing true because the NBC interview of Putin, 3 weeks ago, was hyped for days and people were psyched to see it. That wasn’t a mark of shame, it was an effing gold star. So the entire “evil by association is the NSA’s whole plan” is nonsens
Tucker’s chief concern throughout all of this, is the DOJ is going to charge him with something. What is clear to me is that the Putin-interview narrative is not the actual epicenter of this story.
We, as of yet, have no reason to believe anything about the NSA or DOJ, unless these documents are marked, and even then, it’s not a sure thing either of those leaked the documents. If they are clean, Tucker is trying to get out in front of what he fears would be a investigation, by acting like the government was behind it the whole time. This could also be true if they are marked.
UPDATE. My entire understanding was from watching these 2 vids. I have zero information aside from those. Emptywheel on twitter (a great guy for legal stuff) has this whole complex theory that the intermediaries Tucker spoke to, are in custody with prolly the FBI, and this whole thing is a self-leak to run the Putin-interview story as cover up. i don’t get how that all works, but he knows a lot more stuff than me.
Then I went over to a Trumpublican thread and read what they had to say…they pretty much are only worried about Tucker being “unmasked”. Once that word enters the story, it’s game over. Nothing else will matter. Go figure. No intellectual curiosity whatsoever.
Extra updated: After reading some twitter threads today from both sides of the aisle, what has emerged to me is this:
Focusing on “who” leaked the information might be a complete waste of time. For all we know, it may very well be Tucker himself. An important thing to focus on right now, and later, is that Tucker is completely in control of the narrative. It’s all his to do with as he pleases. What pleases him is to highlight “unmasked” because that is an absolute trigger for those on the right. It literally doesn’t matter what happens after this because the magic word has been spoken. No matter what comes out, it will all be a “process crime” of the left, even if there are no crimes. It’s finished. Over.
What is also crystal clear, is this is just a firestorm of utter bullshit. With idiot conspiracy theories all over the place that are based on nothing. No-thing. There is nothing.
Finally, what is clear, is that there shall be a different topic, the actual thing that happened. it isn’t the Putin interview. It’s the other thing that Tucker did, whatever the fuck it is. This entire charade is created to excuse that other thing.
Shortly after the 2020 Election, Texas Lt. Gov Dan Patrick, offered a reward of up to $1 million for information leading to an arrest and conviction for voter fraud in that election. Just one of several trolling-for-allegation schemes that the GOP enacted in a desperate effort to find someone willing to attest to what they felt, deep in their hearts, was true, despite no evidence of it. The feeling that, there had been massive voter fraud that had affected the results of the election.
In response, Pennsylvania Lt. Governor John Fetterman, came up with the proof they needed. PA did secure convictions on these cases. Three PA residents had committed voter fraud in the 2020 election. THREE. 1 million each, that’s a cool 3 million bucks for John. Of course they all voted for Trump, but that shouldn’t make a difference.
I have to stop here and say, Fetterman will be running to fill the soon to be vacated Senate seat of Pat Toomey(R). I can’t tell you how much I love this dude. He’s extremely practical. Doesn’t care much for politicking, calls bullshit, bullshit, he’s imposing- but is soft spoken, he has a solid, rational set of policies. Plus, the dude is just plain likeable, no matter your political leanings. You know he is never going to play you. He’s honest. His family is just adorable.
If you don’t like Liberal policies, you won’t like his, but you’ll like him because he isn’t going to bullshit you.
His wife is the real deal, I’d vote for her. She makes fun of herself and her husband all the time. She ugly-cries when her feelings get hurt. Gisele is sweet, gentle, and kind. It’s impossible not to fall in love with her and her family. She’s out in the community every week donating her time, not as a political ploy. She loves her community, and her community loves her back very much. Also….she’s beautiful.
But man, is John ugly. And that’s totally cool.
I digress. Texas owes Pennsylvania Lt. Governor John Fetterman 3 million dollars. We are not pleased, Texas.
Let’s not forgot, Texas also had their AG Paxton file suit in federal court, to overturn the election results in 4 states that selected Joe Biden as president, including Pennsylvania. Why just the ones that selected Biden? Most states dramatically changed laws to address the epidemic. The charge was that the election laws had so changed in reaction to Covid19, that the results could not be certifiably accurate. No proof of the allegation, just the mere fact that Pennsylvania sought solution for *more* people to vote in a crisis, must mean more people voted illegally or the systems were flawed, and there’s no need to validate or invalidate that assumption. It just stands on its own.
Aside from the fact Texas has no standing in Pennsylvania in regards to election laws (No state does), as in all things in Trump land, an allegation doesn’t require a remedy. Just saying it, doesn’t make it so. I think we may have forgotten or overlooked the remedy Texas Republican AG Paxton sought. Do you recall?
To remedy the results of our lawful and well run 2020 election in PA (despite all of the GOP attempts to fuck it up), what Texas GOP AG sought was, to nullify the results of the election in PA, and to empower the PA GOP run state legislature to place a new board of electors and have them pick the “correct” President on behalf of the citizens of PA. What he sought was exactly what we fear the GOP wants to do. To nullify the electorate and have the right people pick the right president.
We haven’t forgotten this Texas, and we are not amused.
The most recent harm Texas has done to my great state of Pennsylvania, is the importation of a Texas flashmob on Independence day. I don’t mean, hey-a-cute-choreographed-dance-just-happened, let’s take photos flashmob. No. This was a flashmob of a different sort. The Patriot Front quickly formed during Independence day celebrations in center city to chant “Reclaim America,” and, “The election was stolen.”
The Patriot Front is a Texas-based, Neo-fascist group that desires an authoritarian government to protect Eurocentric identity. I realize we can’t blame the state of Texas for this, but we can blame Trumpublicans whom run that state and those nationwide, for breathing life into, and cementing the push for authoritarian rule.
A flashmob is a decent idea. It clearly got the attention they wanted. Of course they almost got their asses kicked, in a matter of minutes. Only a hit-and-run can work in a place like Philly. This isn’t like a Portland-style, planned-well-in-advance, Proudboys vs. Antifa Cosplay, where they all dress up like Darth Vader and and push back and forth for an hour. No. This is Philly. It only took a handful of Philly natives to chase the 200 or so Patriot Front to their rented Penske trucks. Other people are going to see it, and they are going to come. In Philly, we aren’t going to stop to argue with you or chant slogans. PF knows that, we know that. Violence isn’t right, but if you show up in Philly with that shit, you’ve come specifically for the violence and you won’t be disappointed.
“They started engaging with citizens of Philadelphia, who were none too happy about what they were saying. These males felt threatened, and, at one point, somebody in their crowd threw a type of smoke bomb to cover their retreat, and they literally ran away from the people of Philadelphia,” said Philadelphia Police Officer Michael Crum.