Tuesday, November 29, 2011

How Common Is This, Really?

When the Penn State child-molesting story broke, I wondered how widespread that sort of thing is. Coaches have kind of unique access to boys. There is often justification for physical contact, there are showers after practice, after a game. I had never thought about it, but it is a kind of perfect situation for a pedophile. Now we have a parallel situation uncovered in Syracuse.

The men who end up being coaches in college and professional sports are often charismatic public figures, exemplars of good behavior and a positive attitude. It is hard to imagine them having crude desires and impulses they cannot control but we have seen two examples of perverted pillars of society in recent weeks. I missed it last year, but at least 36 US swimming coaches have been kicked out of the sport for molesting swimmers.

So the question is, is this just part of youth sports? How common is it for coaches to molest children who are participating on their teams?
Two former Syracuse ball boys were the first to accuse [Syracuse basketball assistant coach Bernie] Fine, who has called the allegations "patently false." And a third man came forward last week, accusing Fine of molesting him nine years ago.

Bobby Davis, now 39, told ESPN that Fine molested him beginning in 1984 and that the sexual contact continued until he was around 27. A ball boy for six years, Davis told ESPN that the abuse occurred at Fine's home, at Syracuse basketball facilities and on team road trips, including the 1987 Final Four. His stepbrother, Mike Lang, 45, who also was a ball boy, told ESPN that Fine began molesting him while he was in fifth or sixth grade. Syracuse coach Boeheim silent day after Fine fired

In both of these current cases, other coaching staff and authorities have covered up the molestation or defended the perpetrator. It is impossible to tell how widespread this sort of thing is.

Sadly, it is The Onion that has the most straightforward message about this:
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA—In the wake of the sex abuse scandal that rocked Penn State earlier this month, a coalition of 10-year-old boys from across the nation held a press conference Saturday outside Beaver Stadium, home of college football's Nittany Lions, to remind Americans that if they see someone raping a prepubescent boy, they should contact the police immediately.

"Considering that the monstrous acts perpetrated by Jerry Sandusky went unreported for years, even after a fellow coach saw him raping a 10-year-old boy inside the facility behind me, we feel perhaps not everyone is totally clear on what to do if one witnesses such a thing," said spokesperson Joshua Pearson, who was flanked by several of his fifth-grade colleagues. "Many of you will no doubt be relieved to know the proper course of action is really quite simple: Just contact the police. Call 911, go to your local precinct, stop an officer on the street—the bottom line is, if you see one of us getting raped, notify the police, and do so as quickly as possible."

"It doesn't matter who the boy being raped is, and it doesn't matter who is doing the raping, just please, please alert law enforcement," Pearson added as the 10-year-old boys surrounding him nodded soberly. "And by the way, under no circumstances is it ever okay for an adult to rape a 10-year-old boy, so you really can't go wrong by calling the police when something like that happens." Nation's 10-Year-Old Boys: 'If You See Someone Raping Us, Please Call The Police'

This is humor. It is "funny" because it is so obvious, yet we read in the news about child abuse going on for years with no one reporting it. Can you imagine walking into the shower and seeing a man anally raping a ten-year-old kid, and just walking out again? It seems that Bernie Fine's wife knew what was going on, it seems impossible that the rest of the coaching staff didn't hear about this over the years, and yet nobody said anything. The cover-ups in these two cases were extensive and highly credible, and you have to wonder how many more situations like this exist out there.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

one problem is that, at every level, sports coaches have too much influence and are unaccountable and unquestioned

the whole system needs to be rethought

but that is kind of like turning over the tables in our national "religion"

the mere suggestion will cause a enormously hostile reaction

"Obamacare is the Kryptonite of American politics: Not even Superman himself could survive touching this truly terrible law. Witness the latest voluntary victim of President Obama’s race toward socialized medicine: one Dr. Donald M. Berwick. Few are more deserving than he. Obamacare is heading for the ash heap of history, where it belongs, and so are the politicians who forced it upon an unwilling America. Good riddance.

When Democrats plotted to unleash Obamacare, they knew Americans would never accept it, so they chose, quite frankly, to lie about it. They claimed Obamacare would allow you to keep your current insurance and your current doctor. False. They claimed Obamacare would “create 4 million jobs, 400,000 almost immediately.” False. They claimed Obamacare would reduce the deficit. False. The list of their lies goes on.

When their utopian health care lies began to unravel, Democrats shamelessly began granting Obamacare waivers to their closest friends. About 1,800 and counting get-out-of-jail-free cards have been bestowed predominantly upon union members and other contributors to the Democrats’ big-government machine. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi managed to carve out waivers for her fellow San Francisco luxury boutique owners, while Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid landed a waiver for his home state of Nevada. Score.

When Americans finally had a chance to cast votes against Obamacare, the earth began to move beneath the Democrats’ feet. In January 2010, long-shot Republican candidate Scott Brown promised to be the “40th vote” in the Senate to block Obamacare, and the Massachusetts seat that liberal icon Edward M. Kennedy had held for almost a half-century flipped from blue to red. In August 2010, the bellwether state of Missouri, of all places, voted overwhelmingly 3-1 for an anti-Obamacare ballot measure. In November 2010, Democrats faced Obamacare Armageddon as voters gave the GOP its largest congressional victory in more than a century.

The anti-Obamacare earthquake continues. In the recent November 2011 elections, Democrats received an ominous sign in yet another bellwether state - this time Ohio - a state crucial to Mr. Obama’s re-election. An anti-Obamacare measure swept all 88 counties and won by an almost 2-1 margin despite very heavy union turnout. Now, even Democratic pollsters have taken the highly unusual position of pleading for Mr. Obama to step aside in 2012 for the good of their party and the country.

Obamacare is the albatross Democrats have hung around their own necks. It’s the Curse of Ham, King Tut and the Great Bambino all rolled into one. It’s the place where socialist political futures go to die. Obamacare is the Jonestown flavor of Kool-Aid. At the center of this collapsing health care maelstrom is the departing Medicare chief, Dr. Berwick, a man who leaves Washington just as he arrived: dishonorably. Mr. Obama ignored his own promises of transparency and installed Dr. Berwick as the head of Medicare under the cloak of a recess appointment, thereby avoiding a congressional hearing - until now. With his term expiring, the head of government health care has chosen to slink out of town rather than face public scrutiny."

November 29, 2011 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another of your "neat" change of subjects. Will you please stop trying to turn this site into your own personal musings about unrelated (to the blog entry) topics?
Common manners and courtesy are all we ask of you.

November 29, 2011 12:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

get a life-

what possible difference does it make to you if the conversation goes off on a tangent? anyone can bring it back that wants to and you obviously have opinions about this or you wouldn't have brought it up

"Karl Rove predicted the 2012 presidential race would be vicious, claiming the Republican candidate will face a harsh election battle thanks to President Barack Obama's "hard-nosed Chicago pols."

The former White House deputy chief of staff for George W. Bush said Obama has "walked out on his daytime job" to focus exclusively on reelection and is ready to subject the GOP nominee "to the worst beating of their life, every day for roughly 11 months" in an interview with Newsmax. Rove said that while Obama is "very smart," he's "not a mere mortal, in his mind."

Discussing the deficit reduction efforts, Rove said Obama "made a fundamental mistake" by not getting more involved. Rove said he believes Obama chose not to do more to help with the debt crisis because "there was no upside for him to be involved."

"If he had gotten involved and achieved $1.2 trillion in real savings, it would have fired up the markets, given confidence that America is tackling its economic challenges and particularly its entitlement challenges, and would have put him in a better place for his reelection," Rove said.

Rove -- who has offered up advice to Obama before -- said that Obama has a chance at being reelected because "he's willing to say and do anything in order to get reelected."

"I'd say it's 55 percent that he doesn't get reelected, 45 percent that he might, and it's going to be a very close-run thing," Rove said.

Rove said he wasn't sure which candidate would earn the Republican nomination, but predicted a frontrunner would emerge sometime before the Iowa caucuses in January.

"We don't know," Rove said. "That's what we have these elections about, and I suspect in the next 30 some-odd days left before the vote in Iowa we're going to learn a lot about the capacity of these people to run a strong, effective campaign."

Obama wasn't the only target of Rove's criticism during the interview. The influential Republican also had harsh words for the Occupy Wall Street protesters, calling them "a group of nuts and lunatics.""

November 29, 2011 4:57 PM  
Anonymous GOP loses again said...

"By a vote of 240-139, the New Hampshire Legislature failed to gather two-thirds of the vote needed to overturn Gov. John Lynch's veto of Right-to-Work legislation, HB474.

The membership heard speeches from Republican union members and supporters of the proposal who said that members of the state employee's union, SEA SEIU 1984, were afraid to speak against the union's political agenda for fear of retribution.

Right-to-Work supporters rallied in the cafeteria early in the morning, wearing bright green "YES!!!" T-shirts while firefighters, teachers, and others, lined up both inside and outside of the Statehouse, requesting that legislators stand with the governor.

Booing and cheering peppered the speeches of Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who spoke before the body and supports Right-to-Work, as well as other supporting the proposal. At one point, House Speaker Bill O'Brien, R-Mount Vernon, called for decorum in the gallery.

After the vote, union members in the gallery cheered the decision while some wearing green T-shirts called for a recount."

"CONCORD - Gov. John Lynch today issued the following statement regarding the House's failure to override HB 474, the so-called right-to-work bill:

"This bill would have directly interfered with the rights of businesses and their employees to freely negotiate contracts. Also, the debate over the so-called right-to-work bill in New Hampshire appears to have been largely driven by national outside interest groups, and was not a result of problems facing New Hampshire businesses or workers.

"For these reasons, and others, I vetoed the right-to-work bill in May. I am pleased that a bipartisan coalition of House members put the interest of New Hampshire and voted to sustain my veto."

November 30, 2011 1:49 PM  
Anonymous Here they go again said...

"Time after time this year, congressional Republicans have voted against jobs-creating legislation, telling the fire fighters, teachers, construction workers and jobless Americans—“Don’t worry. We have our very own jobs plan.”

This week in the House, we get to see it in all its disingenuous glory. Here’s how congressional Republicans plan to create jobs—by attacking workers’ rights and gutting workplace and environmental safety and health laws. They really claim this is their jobs package.

The first bill (H.R. 3094) is scheduled to be voted on tomorrow. It would deny workers the right to fair union elections by blocking the modest changes proposed by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) earlier this year in the way union elections are conducted.

It gives employers new tools to block workplace elections by establishing several new waiting periods before an election can go forward and giving employers more grounds to appeal pre-election decisions by the NLRB. It also allows employers—not workers and the union they wish to join—a larger role in determining who is part of a bargaining unit.

On Thursday and Friday, House Republicans will set their sights on crippling the government’s ability to enforce current rules and develop new health, safety and environmental laws. The two main bills are the so-called Regulatory Accountability Act (H.R. 3010) and the REINS Act (H.R. 10).

In a letter to House lawmakers, AFL-CIO Government Affairs Director William Samuel says the RAA would “upend more than 40 years of labor, health, safety and environmental laws and threaten new needed protections.”

In effect, the bill acts as “a super mandate” overriding requirements of current safety health and environmental laws by making costs to businesses, not protection of workers or the public, the primary concern.

The REINS Act would basically take away the right of federal safety and health agencies to implement new rules by requiring Congress to approve all individual major rules, without Congressional approval the new rule would die.

There are also Republicans bills that would put a moratorium on any new safety, health, environmental and other rules and even rollback current major safety laws that have been in place since 1991.

BTW, Republicans say all these attacks on workers’ rights and safety and health and environmental rules would free up businesses, especially small businesses from a supposed onerous burden and send them into a frenzy of hiring. Wrong.

A survey of small business owners last month shows that only 13.9 percent say the reason they are not hiring workers is because of government regulations. Why aren’t businesses hiring? To dust off an old chestnut— “It’s the Economy stupid!”"

November 30, 2011 1:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Child sexual abuse is common enough there are groups for the spouses of child sexual abusers. Here's the story of "Jasmine" who created Healingwives.com.

"When a detective showed Jasmine a video of her husband confessing to sexually abusing a 10-year-old girl, she says, “It was like a knife through my heart.” The 43-year-old creator of HealingWives.com, an online support group for women with similar experiences, explains, “I felt like a victim myself — I mean, in an instant, my world changed.”

The experiences of the wives of child abusers are rarely focused on, but the headline-driving allegations against former college coaches Jerry Sandusky and Bernie Fine are changing that. A recently released tape recording of a conversation between one of Fine’s alleged victims and the coach’s wife, Laurie Davis, appears to reveal that she knew about her husband’s inappropriate sexual behavior. (CNN reported that Davis will claim that the recording was doctored.) Plenty have questioned whether Sandusky’s wife, Dorothy, could have been entirely unaware of her husband’s alleged abuse of boys over a 15-year period. The truth is that, should their husbands be found guilty, these women, along with Jasmine, are members of a unique and pained group; after all, the typical sexual abuser is a married man. How wives respond to the revelation of abuse varies greatly — from reporting it immediately to convincing themselves, time after time, that it won’t happen again. In plenty of cases, they aren’t even aware that their husband was attracted to children in the first place, let alone that he would ever abuse a pre-pubescent child.

That was the case for Jasmine, a Florida resident who asked to go by a pseudonym. On the day of her discovery, she got a call at work — the local elementary school where she taught first grade — notifying her that her husband had been arrested. It wasn’t until she arrived at the local police department and was directed toward the special victims unit that she began to understand. After being arrested, and confronted with an incriminating taped conversation he had with the victim, Jasmine’s husband confessed to molesting a young girl who lived across the street — on one occasion, in his own home.

The revelation was harrowing for Jasmine — but before she left the station that night, when a detective asked her what she was going to do, her answer was immediate: “I’m going to stay.” That isn’t to say that she instantly forgave him. When she went to court the next day for his hearing, she says, “I felt like I was going to a funeral. I was grieving for the life that we had.” They were high school sweethearts and had been married for six years at that point. “The person who I thought I knew absolutely everything about had this hidden life,” she says, her voice still carrying an air of disbelief. He revealed to her that he had experienced attraction to pre-pubescent girls in the past – in addition to adult women — but had convinced himself that “he could control it.” She says she was angry at him — not for experiencing these attractions but for not telling her about it sooner, and for putting himself in the position to act on it. Approaching the situation with that mind-set that allowed her to continue in the relationship.

Her husband was jailed for 60 days, served two years of house arrest, completed 10 years probation and is a lifetime registered sex offender in Florida. She’s stood by him the whole time and supported him financially when he was on house arrest and unable to work. “I had to think about our marriage and that he had been a good person — this was really the first thing we had gone through,” she explains. “He went through years and years of sex-offender treatment and I could see his thinking change. There weren’t so many rationalizations and excuses.”"

November 30, 2011 3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Jasmine’s husband now tells her that he no longer experiences attraction to pre-pubescent girls, although even experts who promote sex-offender treatment doubt such a complete change is possible. “There is no evidence that a man can change from pedophilic to non-pedophilic (or vice versa),” says clinical psychologist James Cantor, the editor in chief of “Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment,” in an email. “A person can be taught tools to help him deal with his sexual interests, and a person’s sex drive can sometimes be suppressed, such as with testosterone-blocking medications. The overall evidence, however, is that changing from pedophilic to non-pedophilic is as impossible as changing a gay man to a straight man.” He adds: “The kind and scale of differences that we see on MRIs of pedophilic men are not the kind or scale that are known to change with training, or psychotherapy or other kinds of intervention.”

Joan Tabachnick of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers tells me, “For some, it is a good decision [to stay] and helps to keep the community safer,” she says. That’s because it gives the offender “a reason to stay connected, to not reoffend.” However, she is careful to add, “For others, it may mean that they are not looking at the reality of what is around them.”

Jasmine has been with her husband for 17 years now – in the same house where the abuse took place — and they now have a 1-year-old and a 4-year-old boy. But she says she doesn’t worry about her husband abusing their children: “I do want to point out that I have boys,” she says, adding that her husband never experienced attraction to males of any age. At the same time, though, she acknowledges that “the experts say it doesn’t really matter if it’s a girl or boy. It’s the age range that an offender is particularly attracted to.” They had their first child during the 10-year probation period; a judge ruled that Jasmine’s husband could be allowed to spend time alone with the boy.

Cantor declined to comment on Jasmine’s specific situation, but notes that “a sizable proportion — sometimes a third — of sexual offenders against multiple children committed those offenses against children of both sexes.” In general, offenders target a single sex, but it’s also true that pedophiles “distinguish between boys and girls much less” than those who are primarily oriented toward adults.

Some wives convince themselves their husband will change even without a conviction, imprisonment or treatment. Christina Enevoldsen, co-founder of the online support group Overcoming Sexual Abuse, married and had a child with her high school boyfriend, who had admitted to molesting a female relative in the past but swore he would never do such a thing again. When she found blood in her 1-year-old daughter’s diaper, her husband “tearfully admitted that he had molested her but promised it would never happen again,” she writes in a blog post. “He seemed very remorseful and I thought that since I caught him, he wouldn’t feel safe repeating the abuse. He seemed afraid of losing his family, so I thought that fear would stop him.”

But he continued to abuse his daughter for most of her childhood. “Yes, I had been fooled by my husband, but I had also fooled myself,” she says. Enevoldsen blames it in part on the repeated sexual abuse she experienced as a child at the hands of male relatives. “Finding blood in her diaper was finding blood in my diaper. I was transported to my own abuse with the same feelings and response: I froze as though my only choice was to lie still and stay quiet.”"

November 30, 2011 3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Denial among close family members who suspect sexual abuse is terribly common – it’s why Tabachnick wrote the guide “Engaging Bystanders in Sexual Violence Prevention.” Tabachnick attempted to explain what might have been going through the mind of Fine’s wife: “We would be asking Bernie’s wife to report her husband, bring shame onto her family and her child, lose their standing in the community and whatever love was left in that marriage,” she says. “In our society there is a very high cost for reporting — and the benefit of reporting is very small if you are truly not sure there would be a successful prosecution.” (You can find more here on the reasons why witnesses to child sexual abuse fail to call police.)

There can also be a great deal of guilt on the wife’s part about the abuse: Molesters who are discovered often place blame on their partner. “He tried to say, ‘Well, you didn’t give me a lot of attention and things weren’t so good in the bedroom,’” Jasmine says. “After years of therapy, I realized that any healthy adult male doesn’t do that with a child. It doesn’t matter how much attention your wife is giving you.”

Jasmine insists that things with her husband are good now, despite the fact that she will have to live with his sex-offender status. His registration publicly lists their home address alongside the details of his conviction for “lewd or lascivious molestation.” It isn’t what she pictured for her life, but it’s what she’s chosen, given the circumstances. “Before this happened, I was the person who picked up the paper and said, ‘Oh, what a monster!’ Until you’re in the situation, you don’t know how you’ll react.”"

November 30, 2011 3:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

""Time after time this year, congressional Republicans have voted against jobs-creating legislation, telling the fire fighters, teachers, construction workers and jobless Americans—“Don’t worry. We have our very own jobs plan.”

This week in the House, we get to see it in all its disingenuous glory. Here’s how congressional Republicans plan to create jobs—by attacking workers’ rights and gutting workplace and environmental safety and health laws. They really claim this is their jobs package."

it's so sad

liberals just don't get it

they really think the way to create jobs is just have the government hire more people

wasteful and efficient

jobs will be created when private enterprise is unshackled by government regulation

as government becomes the employee of more and more people we become less and less free

November 30, 2011 7:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice change of topic, however, "gutting workplace and environmental safety and health laws" is not "the government hir[ing] more people." It's the government protecting citizen workers from the unsafe and unhealthy practices foisted on them by employers.

What conservatives don't get is that workers are voters. Ohio took away workers rights and Governor Kasich has learned that workers are voters. Wisconsin's Governor Walker will learn that lesson. too.

Wisconsin voters know Governor Walker's workers'-rights-gutting-budget has meant the continued loss of jobs in Wisconsin. Walker's lack of understanding has motivated citizens of his state to collect 300,000 petition signatures (over half of what's needed) in 12 days to recall him from office.

"jobs will be created when private enterprise is unshackled by government regulation"

"Unshackling" workers rights to negotiate about workplace rules has not created a single job in Wisconsin. In fact, quite the opposite.

"The unemployment rate fell in 36 states in October [2011], but Wisconsin lost more jobs than any other state in the nation last month.

Unemployment rates fell in 36 states in October and rose in only five, including Wisconsin, according to
the latest monthly report released by the U.S. Department of Labor today. Unemployment rates were unchanged in nine states.

Wisconsin reported the largest October job loss, a drop of 9,700"

December 01, 2011 10:12 AM  
Anonymous The tea has lost its flavor said...

"More Now Disagree with Tea Party – Even in Tea Party Districts

Since the 2010 midterm elections, the Tea Party has not only lost support nationwide, but also in the congressional districts represented by members of the House Tea Party Caucus. And this year, the image of the Republican Party has declined even more sharply in these GOP-controlled districts than across the country at large.

In the latest Pew Research Center survey, conducted Nov. 9-14, more Americans say they disagree (27%) than agree (20%) with the Tea Party movement. A year ago, in the wake of the sweeping GOP gains in the midterm elections, the balance of opinion was just the opposite: 27% agreed and 22% disagreed with the Tea Party. At both points, more than half offered no opinion.

Throughout the 2010 election cycle, agreement with the Tea Party far outweighed disagreement in the 60 House districts represented by members of the Congressional Tea Party Caucus. But as is the case nationwide, support has decreased significantly over the past year; now about as many people living in Tea Party districts disagree (23%) as agree (25%) with the Tea Party.

GOP Loses Favorability Advantage in Tea Party Districts

The Republican Party’s image also has declined substantially among people who live in Tea Party districts. Currently, 41% say they have a favorable opinion of the GOP, while 48% say they have an unfavorable view. As recently as March of this year, GOP favorability was 14 points higher (55%) in these districts, with just 39% offering an unfavorable opinion

Among the public, 36% now say they have a favorable opinion of the Republican Party, down from 42% in March.

By comparison, opinions of the Democratic Party have shifted less – from 50% favorable last summer to 48% in March and 46% in October. The party’s image has remained in negative territory among those living in Tea Party districts throughout this period– currently about four-in-ten (39%) say they have a favorable view of the Democratic Party, while 50% offer an unfavorable view.

But the steep decline in GOP favorability in Tea Party districts means that these constituencies now view the Republican Party about as negatively as the Democratic Party. As recently as March, GOP favorability exceeded Democratic Party favorability by 15 points (55% vs. 40%). Today, both parties receive about the same rating from people in Tea Party districts (41% favorable for the GOP, 39% for the Democratic Party)."

December 01, 2011 2:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm trying to be civil and understanding here, "Anonymous" but your answer, as usual, is rude and insolent ("get a life-
what possible difference does it make to you if the conversation goes off on a tangent? anyone can bring it back that wants to and you obviously have opinions about this or you wouldn't have brought it up?")

There are generally acknowledged rules for posting here (Jim has frequently mentioned them, one of which is that if you have anything to say, make sure it is related to the subject he has introduced. This is NOT YOUR BLOG SITE! and any attempts you make to make it yours will always be met with responses asking you (as a matter of civility and good manners) to adhere to this blog site's rules.

Were you never taught in school that when you are given a topic to address in a paper or on a test, you should not attempt to turn it around to something that suits you? That is usually an indication that you don't know what you are talking about and you want to hide that fact.

December 01, 2011 3:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


this may come as a shock to you but it's not yours either

"Jim has frequently mentioned them, one of which is that if you have anything to say, make sure it is related to the subject he has introduced."

actually, he has consistently made the point that he will subjectively make a decision whether or not to leave a comment

"and any attempts you make to make it yours will always be met with responses asking you (as a matter of civility and good manners) to adhere to this blog site's rules."

I don't recall that you were deputized to monitor content on the site

sounds like you object more to the opinions expressed than the subject matter

December 01, 2011 4:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your usual snarky, condescending, and dumb-witted response, "Anonymous" ("this may come as a shock to you but it's not yours either")

Unlike you, I have never assumed that this blog site was mine to pirate.

As expressed by others before over and over...get your own blog site where you can pontificate to your heart's content.

December 03, 2011 10:11 PM  

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