Month: October 2015

Ben Affleck Had Hillary’s Private Email Address–and late Ambassador Chris Stevens Didn’t

Ben Affleck sent an email to Hillary Clinton’s private email server during her tenure at the State Department, an email released on Friday by the agency revealed. The Argo and Batman v. Superman star e-mailed Clinton on April 16, 2012 to provide an advanced copy of a report on sector security reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo on behalf of his Eastern Congo Initiative nonprofit organization. “The report discusses the opportunity that now exists for the international community to partner with the Government of the DRC to reform the security sector and, in doing so, take concrete steps towards creating a better future for the country,” Affleck wrote. “This report describes a path towards greater security if reform of the military, police and judicial sector is supported by firm commitments from the government of the DRC and the international community.” He added: The report maintains that the underlying reason for many of the problems in the DRC is the pervasive lack of security throughout the country. It offers a critical look at the symptoms that a weak military, police and justice system project on the population as well as the root causes of the horrible reality of daily life in the DRC; lack of political will. Past attempts at military reform have failed mainly due to the lack of political will from the Congolese government, and the international community’s shortfalls in supporting and encouraging the momentum needed for reform. During the Benghazi Committee hearings last week, Clinton acknowledged that Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who was killed along with three other Americans in the September 11, 2012 terrorist attack in Libya, did not have Clinton’s private email address. “I do not believe that he had my personal email,” Clinton said in her testimony, adding: “He was in constant contact with people on my staff, other officials in the State Department, and I did have an opportunity to talk with him about the substance of the policy. But with respect to security, he took those requests where they belonged, he took them to security professionals.” The email was revealed as part of the State Department’s effort to release thousands of Clinton’s emails stored on a private server during her tenure as Secretary of State.

Doesn’t that just make you want to vomit?  Her divaness was taking emails from Ben Affleck…a HollyWEIRD actor, for crying out loud..on her private email..  And yet, an Ambassador, working for her, who DIED in the line of duty didn’t even have that email address.  What a breathtaking lack of priorities.

Army takes aim with more M4 weapons

Fan of the M4A1 and M4? So is the U.S. Army. More of the popular weapons will be making their way into the hands of troops. The Army has ordered $212 million worth of M4 and M4A1 carbines from Colt Defense and FN America. A classic, the M4 combines lightweight mobility with effective firepower. The 5.56-mm carbine was designed to meet the U.S. military’s high performance standards. It’s got a 14 and a half-inch barrel and with the stock extended the weapon is 33 inches long. The rate of fire is 700 to 950 RPM and the M4 has an effective range of about 600 meters, or 1,969 feet. In 2013, the military placed a $77 million order with FN for 120,000 M4s. Attempts to replace the popular M4 with another weapon, however, have not been successful. Instead, the weapon has been improved through programs like M4s to M4A1s and the M4A1+ initiative. The M4A1 has been popular with special operations warriors for about two decades. Last year, the Army began modifying nearly half a million M4s to upgrade them to M4A1s. And these M4A1 carbine rifles have been rolling out in stages to soldiers. The Army is expected to finish the conversion of M4s to M4A1s by 2020. The conversions mean that the M4A1s weigh a bit more, but once modified they can offer a lot of advantages, such as in suppressing fire. The barrel is heavier by a few ounces, but it provides better resistance to heat and it enables shooting longer strings of fire with accuracy. The conversion also includes a shift from three-round burst to fully automatic. And good news for lefties, this version provides ambidextrous safety controls. The M4A1+ program aims to further enhance the weapon. The “plus” in M4A1 includes changes like an extended 12-inch forward Picatinny rail. This lets soldiers attach more accessory advantages like laser sights, optics, lights and pointers. The front and rear iron sights will be removable. M4A1+ is meant to have better accuracy – no farther than five inches from the target at 300 meters, or 984 feet, throughout the life of the barrel. The shift to a floating barrel will help to improve accuracy. An advanced flash suppressor reduces firing signatures during both night and day missions. The “plus” also provides an optional sniper-style single-stage trigger. The contract to supply the new M4s and M4A1s runs through 2020. The Army also recently ordered $84 million worth of M240 machine guns from FN America. For consumers, from now through Dec. 31, Colt is offering purchasers of a new Government Model or Defender pistol a free Colt Carry Kit. The kit includes one hundred dollars worth of Blade-Tech holster, additional magazine, and cap.

What a great piece by ballet dancer turned defense specialist Allison Barrie!  I used a tricked-out M4 when I was Afghanistan.  It’s definitely a big improvement over the old school M-16 that were in the inventory for many decades.  Maybe one of these days I’ll add one of these to my collection.    🙂

Obama And Allies Defend Black Lives Matter, Attack FBI Chief over Ferguson Effect

The Obama administration is attempting to publicly downplay a rift between President Obama and FBI Director James Comey over The Ferguson Effect; the issue of whether there’s been an impact on violent crime due to the nearly constant criticism of the police led by the Black Lives Matter movement. The back peddling comes on the heels of a volley of attacks on Comey that came from the media, former Attorney General Eric Holder, and President Obama himself. Obama and Comey had a closed door meeting on Thursday. The Washington Post reported that “White House officials were privately irritated” about Comey’s remarks in two recent speeches discussing a possible link between soaring violent crime rates and the deluge of activism against law enforcement. The attacks on law enforcement have been spearheaded by the Black Lives Matter movement, the activist phenomenon that the president publicly recently claimed was not anti-police. The claim that the #BlackLivesMatter movement is not against law enforcement runs counter to the group’s statements and actions, including taunting police after the murder of fellow officers, as well as their lionizing of convicted cop killer Assata Shakur, who is on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist List. In an attempt at damage control on Friday, White House Press Spokesman Josh Earnest said that President Obama believes “somebody who has the prodigious skills of Director Comey must be involved in grappling with the difficult policy debates that we’re having in this country right now in balancing security and the protection of civil liberties.” Earlier in the week, however, Earnest had scoffed at the notion of the Ferguson Effects, saying evidence “does not support the notion that law enforcement officers around the country are shying away from fulfilling their responsibilities.” That official White House comment was just part of a series of attacks on Comey and his statements by the president and his allies. After Comey’s October 23rd remarks at the University of Chicago Law School, where Comey said, “I do have a strong sense that some part of the explanation is a chill wind that has blown through American law enforcement,” President Obama hit back with thinly veiled comments in a speech on October 27th to the International Association of Chiefs of Police: “What we can’t do is cherry-pick data or use anecdotal evidence to drive policy or to feed political agendas.” The day before Obama’s speech, protestors had held a #StopTheCops protest outside the international Association of Chiefs of Police conference. However, Comey’s discussions with police officials were not merely off-the-cuff chit-chat. In fact, the information Comey got from law enforcement officials came in a series of “listening sessions” focused on issues of race and law enforcement. The same day that the President criticized Comey’s comments, the editorial board of the New York Times also went on the attack against Comey in an op-ed titled “Political Lies About Police Brutality,” where they accepted the premise that there’s a widespread issue of police brutality and went after Comey, saying: ” His formulation implies that for the police to do their jobs, they need to have free rein to be abusive. It also implies that the public would be safer if Americans with cellphones never started circulating videos of officers battering suspects in the first place.” The next day, Eric Holder spoke with reporters and compared the Black Lives Matter movement to the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s and echoed the criticism of Comey, saying, “I don’t agree with the comments that he’s made about, or the connection he’s drawn, between the so-called ‘Ferguson effect’ and this rise in crime.” Holder has openly discussed his role in the angry clashes with Columbia University when he attended in the early 1970s, telling students at a 2009 commencement speech, “I was among a large group of students who felt strongly about the way we thought the world should be, and we weren’t afraid to make our opinions heard. I did not take a final exam until my junior year at Columbia — we were on strike every time finals seemed to roll around.” Patrisse Cullors, one of the co-founders of the Black Lives Matter movement, learned “revolutionary community organizing” under the mentorship of Eric Mann, a Students for a Democratic Society radical who helped organize the 1968 protests at Columbia that received widespread national coverage. However, even some Democrats admit the existence of the Ferguson Effect. Earlier in October former Obama Chief of Staff and current Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said: ” We have allowed our police department to get fetal and it is having a direct consequence. They have pulled back from the ability to interdict… they don’t want to be a news story themselves, they don’t want their career ended early, and it’s having an impact.” The attacks on Comey come as President Obama is pushing a criminal justice reform agenda that has been advanced by the radical left for decades and more recently has been the chief policy demand of Black Lives Matter.

Thousands of Muslim migrants ‘disappear’ from camps – But U.N. Agenda 2030 has a fix: Step right up for your ‘universal ID’

Where oh where have the Muslim migrants gone? That is the question German authorities are asking themselves after some troubling reports of disappearances. According to German press reports, keeping track of all the Muhammads and Alis pouring across borders is proving ever so tricky for European countries being flooded with people on the move from the Middle East and Africa. Now, the United Nations is partnering with a private company to offer a solution – a new “universal” identification system that will comply with the United Nations’ sustainability goal of getting “legal” biometric IDs that include iris scans, photographs and fingerprints, “into the hands of everyone in the world by the year 2030.” It offers hope for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal of getting legal ID into the hands of everyone in the world by the year 2030 with its Identification for Development (ID4D) initiative. As author-blogger Pamela Geller noted this week, citing German press reports, more than one in two refugees from one camp went missing and are now unaccounted for and considered “on the run.” At least 580 refugees initially were reported to have disappeared from Camp Shelterschlefe. Now, in a “terrible new twist,” the disappearances are spreading. “It’s become an epidemic,” Geller said. “7,000 migrants have left the Brandenburg shelters. Where are they going? Who is sheltering these illegals, many with ties to ISIS?” Such a high number of people hiding is “completely unacceptable,” according to the German authorities. “Where are they hiding? Could they be connecting with sleeper cells?” Geller writes. “Is it any wonder that Europeans are scrambling for guns?” Geller added, referencing a report by WND earlier this week that long guns are flying off the shelves in Austria and other countries where it’s still legal for average citizens to buy firearms. Die Welt is reporting that thousands of refugees have left their assigned accommodations. “They are simply not there anymore,” the news outlet reports. Refugees disappear daily from the initial welcoming centers in Brandenburg without giving notice.

NASA Adds to Evidence of Mysterious Ancient Earthworks

High in the skies over Kazakhstan, space-age technology has revealed an ancient mystery on the ground. Satellite pictures of a remote and treeless northern steppe reveal colossal earthworks — geometric figures of squares, crosses, lines and rings the size of several football fields, recognizable only from the air and the oldest estimated at 8,000 years old. The largest, near a Neolithic settlement, is a giant square of 101 raised mounds, its opposite corners connected by a diagonal cross, covering more terrain than the Great Pyramid of Cheops. Another is a kind of three-limbed swastika, its arms ending in zigzags bent counterclockwise. Described last year at an archaeology conference in Istanbul as unique and previously unstudied, the earthworks, in the Turgai region of northern Kazakhstan, number at least 260 — mounds, trenches and ramparts — arrayed in five basic shapes. Spotted on Google Earth in 2007 by a Kazakh economist and archaeology enthusiast, Dmitriy Dey, the so-called Steppe Geoglyphs remain deeply puzzling and largely unknown to the outside world. Two weeks ago, in the biggest sign so far of official interest in investigating the sites, NASA released clear satellite photographs of some of the figures from about 430 miles up. “I’ve never seen anything like this; I found it remarkable,” said Compton J. Tucker, a senior biospheric scientist for NASA in Washington who provided the archived images, taken by the satellite contractor DigitalGlobe, to Mr. Dey and The New York Times. Ronald E. LaPorte, a University of Pittsburgh scientist who helped publicize the finds, called NASA’s involvement “hugely important” in mobilizing support for further research. This week, NASA put space photography of the region on a task list for astronauts in the International Space Station. “It may take some time for the crew to take imagery of your site since we are under the mercy of sun elevation angles, weather constraints and crew schedule,” Melissa Higgins of Mission Operations emailed Dr. LaPorte. The archived images from NASA add to the extensive research that Mr. Dey compiled this year in a PowerPoint lecture translated from Russian to English. “I don’t think they were meant to be seen from the air,” Mr. Dey, 44, said in an interview from his hometown, Kostanay, dismissing outlandish speculations involving aliens and Nazis. (Long before Hitler, the swastika was an ancient and near-universal design element.) He theorizes that the figures built along straight lines on elevations were “horizontal observatories to track the movements of the rising sun.” Kazakhstan, a vast, oil-rich former Soviet republic that shares a border with China, has moved slowly to investigate and protect the finds, scientists say, generating few news reports. “I was worried this was a hoax,” said Dr. LaPorte, an emeritus professor of epidemiology at Pittsburgh who noticed a report on the finds last year while researching diseases in Kazakhstan. With the help of James Jubilee, a former American arms control officer and now a senior science and technology coordinator for health issues in Kazakhstan, Dr. LaPorte tracked down Mr. Dey through the State Department, and his images and documentation quickly convinced them of the earthworks’ authenticity and importance. They sought photos from KazCosmos, the country’s space agency, and pressed local authorities to seek urgent Unesco protection for the sites — so far without luck. In the Cretaceous Period 100 million years ago, Turgai was bisected by a strait from what is now the Mediterranean to the Arctic Ocean. The rich lands of the steppe were a destination for Stone Age tribes seeking hunting grounds, and Mr. Dey’s research suggests that the Mahandzhar culture, which flourished there from 7,000 B.C. to 5,000 B.C., could be linked to the older figures. But scientists marvel that a nomadic population would have stayed in place for the time required to fell and lay timber for ramparts, and to dig out lake bed sediments to construct the huge mounds, originally 6 to 10 feet high and now 3 feet high and nearly 40 feet across. Persis B. Clarkson, an archaeologist at the University of Winnipeg who viewed some of Mr. Dey’s images, said these figures and similar ones in Peru and Chile were changing views about early nomads. “The idea that foragers could amass the numbers of people necessary to undertake large-scale projects — like creating the Kazakhstan geoglyphs — has caused archaeologists to deeply rethink the nature and timing of sophisticated large-scale human organization as one that predates settled and civilized societies,” Dr. Clarkson wrote in an email. “Enormous efforts” went into the structures, agreed Giedre Motuzaite Matuzeviciute, an archaeologist from Cambridge University and a lecturer at Vilnius University in Lithuania, who visited two of the sites last year. She said by email that she was dubious about calling the structures geoglyphs — a term applied to the enigmatic Nazca Lines in Peru that depict animals and plants — because geoglyphs “define art rather than objects with function.” Dr. Matuzeviciute and two archaeologists from Kostanay University, Andrey Logvin and Irina Shevnina, discussed the figures at a meeting of European archaeologists in Istanbul last year. With no genetic material to analyze — neither of the two mounds that have been dug into is a burial site — Dr. Matuzeviciute said she used optically stimulated luminescence, a method of measuring doses from ionizing radiation, to analyze the construction material, and came up with a date from one of the mounds of around 800 B.C. Other preliminary studies push the earliest date back more than 8,000 years, which could make them the oldest such creations ever found. Other materials yield dates in the Middle Ages. Mr. Dey said some of the figures might have been solar observatories akin, according to some theories, to Stonehenge in England and the Chankillo towers in Peru. “Everything is linked through the cult of the sun,” said Mr. Dey, who spoke in Russian via Skype through an interpreter, Shalkar Adambekov, a doctoral student at the University of Pittsburgh. The discovery was happenstance.

Things that make ya go, “Hmmmm…”

German-born rapper turned ISIS ‘poster boy’ reported killed in US airstrike

A German-born rapper who traded in the life of a MC for a life of terror with ISIS was killed earlier this month in a U.S. airstrike in Syria, multiple news outlets reported Thursday. The Daily Beast, citing two U.S. officials, reported that Denis Cuspert, aka Deso Dogg, was killed Oct. 17 while traveling in a car with two other people. The website reported that Cuspert was the target of the strike, though he was not considered to be a high-value member of the terror group. Reuters, citing a U.S. official, reported that airstrike was believed to have taken place on Oct. 16. The discrepancy could not immediately be reconciled. In February, Cuspert was formally designated as a terrorist by the State Department, a rare step against a European citizen, after he appeared in numerous grisly propaganda videos on behalf of ISIS. In one particularly gruesome video, dating from this past November, Cuspert was seen with other fighters who shot one person and beheaded another. Cuspert was not shown killing anyone, but holds the severed head and announces that the dead were enemies of ISIS. “That’s why they’ve received the death sentence,” Cuspert announced in German on the video. German law enforcement and intelligence officials had long marked Cuspert out as a leader of ISIS’ German-speaking contingent. “Denis Cuspert stands in the focus of security circles because of his essential role for Islamic State,” a German law enforcement official told in February. “He is propagandist of IS.” The son of a Ghanian father who left Cuspert’s German mother, he recorded three albums for a Berlin-based gangsta rap label, toured with American rapper DMX and scored a minor hit with “Willkommen in meiner Welt” (Welcome to my World) in 2010. “Welcome to my world full of hate and blood,” went part of the song. “Children’s souls weep softly when the black angels sing.” According to a report, he converted to Islam in 2010 following a near-fatal car accident. It was then that his music began advocating violent jihad. In 2011, Berlin prosecutors charged him with illegal possession of weapons after Cuspert appeared brandishing weapons as “Abou Maleeq” in a YouTube video. A police raid on his home yielded weapons and ammunition, and although it did not result in jail time, he was squarely on the radar of German counter-terrorism investigators. In 2012, Cuspert left Germany for Egypt, before eventually making his way to Syria where he joined Al Qaeda. When Islamic State broke away from the terror group behind 9/11, Cuspert pledged his loyalty to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. “Cuspert is emblematic of the type of foreign recruit ISIL seeks for its ranks,” the State Department, using another acronym for the terror group, wrote in February, “individuals who have engaged in criminal activity in their home countries who then travel to Iraq and Syria to commit far worse crimes.”

Ahh… Another disgusting, animalistic, piece of garbage vaporized by our military. Outstanding!! 🙂

Feds say 179,027 criminal illegals are loose on U.S. streets

Nearly 1 million immigrants have been ordered deported but still roam free in the U.S., including nearly 180,000 who have been convicted of crimes here, the Homeland Security Department said in information released Friday by the Senate immigration subcommittee. The release came the same day that two top lawmakers, the chairman of the House and Senate judiciary committees, demanded answers on how a man who’d been deported twice before snuck back into the U.S. and, according to a criminal complaint, then kidnapped and raped his estranged girlfriend. The level of criminal behavior by immigrants — both legal and illegal — has become a key part of the current political debate over immigration, border fencing and birthright citizenship. But the federal government does not have any way of tracking the overall criminal behavior of immigrants, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency that detains and deports illegal immigrants, admitted in the information provided to the Senate. “ICE is unable to statistically report on the number of aliens who have been arrested for criminal offenses,” the agency said. ICE did, however, say it is making headway on trying to get sanctuary cities to cooperate with its new slimmed-down deportation program, known as the Priority Enforcement Program, or PEP. Of 340 jurisdictions identified as sanctuary cities or counties, ICE says more than half have expressed interest in cooperating with the PEP. What that means, exactly, is still unclear, because some jurisdictions have said they will only partially comply — yet are included on the government’s list of cooperators. All told, there are 918,369 immigrants living in the U.S. who have been ordered deported. Some of them are here under special court rulings or administration decisions that prevent them from being sent back to specific countries, while others just aren’t deemed serious enough criminals by the Obama administration to worry about. Of the total, 179,027 have criminal convictions.

Jason and Freddie, eat your hearts out! One the eve before Halloween, that is a number that should terrify all of us! Just think.. There are between 11-20 MILLION illegal aliens in this country. OF that, around 1 MILLION have already been through the courts and been given a legal order to be deported…but they’re still here!! Worse, almost a QUARTER MILLION have criminal convictions!! Holy crap!! Yep, you guessed it.. We’ve been calling on the Administration from day one here at The Daily Buzz to BUILD THE WALL NOW!!!!….and put U.S. Army National Guard troops physically ON the border with Mexico….where they should remain until that wall/fence is finally built above and below ground (to prevent tunneling)…however long that takes. Simultaneously, we need to be rounding up, and deporting, illegals by the hundreds of thousands…paying particular attention to known gang members, already convicted criminal aliens, and heck…those who have already been given a deportation order! To do anything less is foolish, irresponsible, and undermines our nation’s national security and economic interests. Enough is enough!

World’s top 5 haunted hotels

Enjoy a spooky stay this Halloween season at one of our favorite haunted hotels. From former prisons to medieval mansions to the property that inspired “The Shining,” these terrifying retreats offer adventurous vacationers an up-close encounter with the spirit world. While some play down the paranormal connection, others take pride in their haunted history, offering ghost tours and sharing stories of ghastly guests — including ancient Roman emperors, murdered French aristocrats and executed criminals. Make sure to pack a nightlight before taking off for one of these otherworldly accommodations.

To see this ghastly list, click on the text above. Muhahahahahaha!! 🙂

Stanford class on police from ‘slave patrols to Ferguson’ named most biased course

Stanford University won Campus Reform’s first annual Biased Course Contest on Friday for a class entitled, “History of the Police in the United States: Slave Patrols to Ferguson.” The five-unit history class explores the question, “How did the police come to have the power to use violence?” according to the course description, and fulfills a humanities requirement. “The historical relationship between race and the administration of policing is a central question,” says the description. “Students will hone the methodology necessary to examine primary sources such as police memoirs, court records, police files, detective novels, music videos and photographs.” The instructor, Branden Ames, declined to comment in an email to the Washington Times. The conservative website Campus Reform reported receiving 37 submissions for the award, which focuses on classes “currently being offered at U.S. colleges that present a skewed perspective on major political issues.” The winning entry was submitted by Stanford student Nick Sovich, who received $500. The runners-up were “Taking Marx Seriously,” an advanced political-science seminar at Amherst College submitted by student Avery Riggs, and “The Refusal to Work,” a communications elective at Cornell University submitted by student Casey Breznick.

You really can’t make this stuff up, folks..

RNC pulls out of NBC debate set for February

Responding to the blowback against CNBC’s handling of the third GOP debate, the head of the Republican National Committee announced Friday that it was “suspending” its plans to partner with NBC News for a presidential debate next year. In a letter to Andrew Lack, the head of NBC News, RNC Chair Reince Priebus said the CNBC network, which is owned by NBCUniversal News Group, conducted the GOP debate Wednesday in “bad faith.” “I write to inform you that pending further discussion between the Republican National Committee (RNC) and our presidential campaigns, we are suspending the partnership with NBC News for the Republican primary debate at the University of Houston on February 26, 2016,” Mr. Priebus wrote. “The RNC’s sole role in the primary debate process is to ensure that our candidates are given a full and fair opportunity to lay out their vision for America’s future. We simply cannot continue with NBC without full consultation with our campaigns. “We understand that NBC does not exercise full editorial control over CNBC’s journalistic approach,” he said. “However, the network is an arm of your organization, and we need to ensure there is not a repeat performance.” Ali Zelenko, spokesperson for NBC News, called it “a disappointing development.” “However, along with our debate broadcast partners at Telemundo we will work in good faith to resolve this matter with the Republican Party,” Ms. Zelenko said in a statement. The debate in Colorado was the third of the GOP nomination contest, which the RNC hoped to have more control over following the unruly 2012 race. But the moderators in prime-time debate Wednesday lost control of the event, coming under fire from the candidates, who panned their questions as inaccurate and shallow. CNBC has since faced a barrage of criticism. “While debates are meant to include tough questions and contrast candidates’ visions and policies for the future of America, CNBC’s moderators engaged in a series of ‘gotcha’ questions, petty and mean-spirited in tone, and designed to embarrass our candidates,” Mr. Priebus said in the letter. “What took place Wednesday night was not an attempt to give the American people a greater understanding of our candidates’ policies and ideas,” he said.

Kudos to Reince!! This is a HUGE public rebuke of the dominantly liberal mainstream media…and it is a principled rebuke. I heard Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) say last night that what the RNC oughtta do for the next debate is have Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, and Sean Hannity be the moderators. Hmmm… I’d probably agree with the first two, but not Sean. Sean is a good guy and all. But, that’s a little outside his league. Rush is, well, Rush. Nuff said. And, Mark Levin is an attorney who knows the Constitution and Bill of Rights like no other…and has written books on the subject, literally. But, big picture.. I think the good Senator from the great state of Texas is on to something here.. I’d say, have FoxNews sponsor it, and have Rush and Mark be two of the moderators…along with someone like Brit Hume. That would be a VERY small nod to the establishment media as Brit is more or less retired, and came from ABC News once upon a time. He is VERY respected and measured, and would be able to balance/off-set some of the roughness from Mark.