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1 - 6 August 2017

by Bjinse Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:21:34 PM EST

Your take on this week's news


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by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:23:58 PM EST
Britain couldn't leave the single market if it tried | Andrew Adonis | The Guardian

Setting aside its merits, there is a huge practical problem with hard Brexit. Leaving the customs union and the single market requires the UK by March 2019 to negotiate new trade treaties not only with the EU27, but with the 75 other nations with which the EU has free or preferential trade agreements, if British trade is not to take an immediate and substantial hit. Between them, these 102 countries include most of the trading world, and account for more than 60% of UK exports of goods and services.

Just because ministers keep repeating the mantra that a post-Brexit "global Britain" will trade far more with the "wider world" does not make it true. Britain's trade is already global - and this is helped, not hindered, by being part of the EU customs union. There are a few large markets with which the EU does not yet have trade agreements, but it has them with most of Britain's trading partners, and the number is growing. An agreement with Canada came into force last month; heads of terms have just been signed with Japan.

by Gag Halfrunt on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 10:21:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:24:01 PM EST
If you're not a resident in Spain, what are your mortgage options?
The Panic of '08 is still in gov't's rear-view mirror. Credit extended for speculative purchase loans has tightened, in theory, where it should. This English-language edition doesn't comment on domestic demand however. Why is that?

Renting in Toronto Is a Total Nightmare

Ask Kin Lau. Normally, landlords would be swiping right on him.
[...]
Their online ad, with a photo of the pair in a meadow by a wood fence, describes the 21-year-olds as a young, polite couple seeking to spend no more than C$825 a month. They're getting more emails from scam artists asking for money than from landlords.
[...]
Landlords are ecstatic at their good fortune.

Two apparently unrelated events, provisional implementation of CETA and Black Mirror episode "Nosedive," converge in my reading of this free-market, or on-demand, dilemma. The "self-curation and validation-seeking ... backbone of a future society" is ill-equipped to secure a general utility.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 10:27:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:24:04 PM EST
Guardian
Donald Trump seemed less than awestruck when talking about his late mother's homeland in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, observing: "You don't hear the word Britain any more."
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 08:32:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Wonder of wonders among eugenic/racist/human speciation theories: Trump must be a self-hating, half-Scot!

US Americans (of European heritage) are particularly susceptible to the paradox produced by claiming nonsensical, fractional identities as if shares of import to um "democratization" of each national polity claimed like property.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 12:13:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ha'aretz
"We lost a very strong friend and supporter of Israel," said Mort Klein, the president of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), a right-wing organization, who has been in touch with Scaramucci ever since the 2016 election campaign. "He loves Israel and wants to do what is best for Israel, as long as its' also the best thing for America," Klein told Haaretz with regards to the "Mooch," using his nickname, and adding that "maybe they will still find another position for him in the administration."
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 10:15:13 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:24:07 PM EST
Trump is withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement. Is it time to boycott America?
Trump is known to like walls. Maybe a wall of carbon tariffs around the US is a solution he will understand" -- Jeremy Wates, Secretary General of the European Environmental Bureau.
[...]
A few influential voices have already been calling for climate-related sanctions against the US. In 2006 Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz recommended sanctions against the US because of its climate inaction. Last year, famed author and activist Naomi Klein did the same. This year, "the most influential ethicist alive", Peter Singer, proposed them too. So did South African climate justice activist-academic Patrick Bond, as well as the Financial Times' Martin Wolff. Even former French president Nicolas Sarkozy suggested sanctions in the form of a carbon tax of 1-3% on US imports [2015] -- a proposal that could be refined by only taxing States that are not taking meaningful climate action, unlike Hawaii, California and others.

What will you do about it?

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 09:51:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:25:04 PM EST
Best Idea Since Jesus on a Stick with Wheels: DESERTEC is back in the news.

Desert solar project could power 5 million EU homes, feed thirty-seven families of 18 in Tunis, maybe.

[Sheik] Kevin Sara claimed that an initial 250MW could be up and running, powering Europe via an interconnector with Malta, by 2020. It would mean an extra 1,000GWh of clean power a year being made available to the European grid.
[...]
Italy and Malta's energy grids are already connected via a 95km link that came online in 2015....The second stage of the plan is to construct Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) towers with a capacity of 2.25GW, which would be connected to Italy, just south of Rome, via another cable that would deliver 9,000GWh per year.
[...]
Although both DESERTEC and now TuNur have faced criticism and accusations of "colonisation", the project insists that its planned facility will help prevent desertification and minimise water consumption. An impact study also predicts that 2,000 direct jobs and 20,000 indirect jobs could be created.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 08:24:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This is insane, (yet still better than the status quo).
Why not start with Greece, Spain and Italy?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 at 01:05:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Nobody is stopping them, but land prices and corruption.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 at 07:04:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
And austerity.

Spain was building large thermal solar. Austerity killed the industry.

by fjallstrom on Mon Aug 7th, 2017 at 10:36:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Rajoy killed the project in the name of austerity. But austerity is often about not doing SOME things that SOME wealthy an influential people don't like. Spaniards can clarify - hopefully.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Aug 8th, 2017 at 12:34:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's  really good idea. There is a shortage of jobs in the N Saharan states and this ongoing development could be the start of something big. Especially if they build the cell fabrication factories to keep everything local.

If they were to put the entire array on stilts (eg melted sand poles) then you owold get much lower evaporation from soil and agriculture would benefit.

Have solar powered (direct or not) fresh water and you could pump that inland. Keep building that infrastructure and over time it could be significant.

And if they gave over say 10% of land to coppice trees whose produce were to be sunk in deep water, they cold begin to offset carbon (a bit).

All round fabulous idea.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 at 07:03:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Solar power in North Africa for North Africa is a great idea. Building Europe's energy infrastructure outside Europe is not such a good idea.
by fjallstrom on Mon Aug 7th, 2017 at 10:38:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How is importing sustainably produced electricity worse that importing oil or gas to provide for Europe's energy needs? And the Sahara has far more solar power potential than its sparsely distributed population could ever need.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Aug 8th, 2017 at 12:11:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In an ideal world this would be a highly mutually beneficial trade arrangement. But where and when have trade arrangements ever been other than the masks for power arrangements? But still, the benefits to African host companies could well exceed the drawbacks, especially if the interests of the average citizen of the African country involved are given some weight. Local elites always benefit - unless they oppose and are overthrown for so doing. England has form, Ireland less so.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Aug 8th, 2017 at 12:29:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
More electricity than they will ever need? goodlord, what is the installed capacity and utilization of electricity in the several north African nations that warrant surplus export to global North rather than global South?

I haven't looked it up lately. But I did read this.
UN projects world population to reach 8.5 billion by 2030, driven by growth in developing countries

Moreover, the report reveals that during the 2015-2050 period, half of the world's population growth is expected to be concentrated in nine countries: India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Tanzania, the United States, Indonesia and Uganda.
[...]
During this period, the report said, the populations of 28 African countries are projected to more than double, and by 2100, 10 African countries are projected to have increased by at least a factor of five: Angola, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Mali, Niger, Somalia, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia.

Let's hope these people won't ever "need" iPhones, server farms, smart homes, Sub Zero refrigeration, public water & sewage systems, or EVs.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 01:39:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm pretty sure the Sahara has the space to provide that too, but those countries might be better off installing their own solar capacity. Europe's problem is being up north.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:03:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
hmm, yes, well, Edward Said is nodding.
And so in the late twentieth century the imperial cycle of the last century in some way replicates itself, although today there are really no big empty spaces, no expanding frontiers, no exciting new settlements to establish.

No doubt Leopold said something like that, too.
Belgian rule in the Congo was based on the "colonial trinity" (trinité coloniale) of state, missionary and private company interests.[7] The privileging of Belgian commercial interests meant that large amounts of capital flowed into the Congo and that individual regions became specialised.

Best idea since Jesus on a stick with wheels. Even "communist"[!] CHINA is at it! o, no.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:42:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That doesn't make any sense.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:50:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Which part?

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:59:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe try saying what you mean rather than asymptotically approaching it?

I suspect you're passing some comment on the ownership structure - which yes, much better this was locally owned - but it could be something else.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 03:18:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I've no reason to believe that I'm "passing some comment on [TuNur] ownership structure". The passage (above) I selected to quote denotes the latest rhetorical version of the "ownership structure" of the DESERTEC project.

eurotrib comment history

Furthermore, I posted links identifying its "Main Shareholders" (quoted from the sources) as well as historical reference to trinité coloniale, or "ownership structure," on which expected returns from DESERTEC investment evidently rely. And every eurotrib subscriber should by now be familiar with common practices in P-P financing of renewable NRG infrastructures (except the preposterous claim "prevent desertification" of the Sahara).

I gather, that benefit claim passed you by.

With this information, I conclude as I did nearly 10 years ago: DESERTEC is another ill-conceived, morally bankrupt, and cynical predation proposal. Defense of  purported interests in it for "North African" hosts [!] by some commenters here was predictable.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 04:31:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well once the stuff is built the question of ownership can be revisited...
by generic on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:36:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
mmmm, no. The re-visiting and re-imagining are not in the contract language of contemporary "green energy" public-private project financing, even in the USA. Here tax payers lease the lines laid by private owner-operators. In perpetuity.

'Twould be a shame that Gadaffi is dead but for his ebil, dictatorial, and klepto-maniacal scheme to compete with the crazy IMF/World Bank.

African Monetary Union (UMA)

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 02:58:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
He didn't say electricity, Cat, he said potential.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 09:11:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed! And just because, historically, almost all benefits of European or US FDI have flowed to the investor with a small bit flowing to local elites that we call 'corrupt' and they think of as 'traditional' does not mean that more broadly shared benefits are not possible. Especially were the foreign investors make that a requirement. We should not assume that this is categorically impossible.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Aug 10th, 2017 at 03:36:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
hmm, yes, well, given outcomes of prior trials, what are the odds that a privately-owned commercial business will require distribution of specific benefits of public utility for "North Africa" in order to begin construction of DESERTEC?

Have you a recent example?

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Aug 10th, 2017 at 05:07:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not for North Africa, Oakland under Jerry Brown did impose some 'affordable housing' requirements on developers. Point being that it is possible, not that it is likely. And we are full speed ahead in the opposite direction presently in the USA with Public Money in Private Pockets Partnerships.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat Aug 12th, 2017 at 02:17:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I responded to this comment.
How is importing sustainably produced electricity worse that importing oil or gas to provide for Europe's energy needs? And the Sahara has far more solar power potential than its sparsely distributed population could ever need.

There are several assumptions, possibilities or "potentials," expressed by these statements, but catalytic conversion of (sun)light into transmmitable electricity is not one of them. The purpose of DESERTEC construction is to collect and transmit electricity. The proposed construction site(s) is not co-located with end-users, because Europeans have less electricity than they need or live in darkness.

Or do they?

A show of sophistry by a person of your age is unbecoming.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Aug 10th, 2017 at 04:46:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Germany has very large amounts of solar power, but the utility of that power is limited by latitude seasonally. That is the chief reason for wanting to locate solar facilities in equatorial regions. Technically the biggest limitation is power transport. Else the equator would be ringed with solar power installations.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat Aug 12th, 2017 at 04:14:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]

in "World Energy 2.0" (2007), courtesy: melo.

Am I to understand then, northern hemisphere grids (EU, Germany specifically) which are too far from the equator to exploit "local solar irradiance", ought to define investment in and feasibility of decentralized PV installation, generation, and transmission everywhere else on the planet?

How catholic.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sat Aug 12th, 2017 at 06:34:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I neither said nor implied any of those things. My point was that, while being limited seasonally by latitude, solar WAS able to make a significant, cost effective, contribution to the grid even in Germany. Of course the same equipment, installed within 20 degrees of the equator, would give a much better result. So it becomes a trade-off of transmission cost vs. reduced generation. Were technology to greatly reduce the transmission cost then locating solar generation near the equator would become more desirable. Morocco is currently of interest because of its proximity to Spain and the European grid. But Spain would do just fine, IMO, were it not for local idiot politicians like Rajoy who shut down planned projects for political purposes as well as rendering existing facilities less viable by changes in regulations.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Aug 13th, 2017 at 05:38:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
m'k.
I did ask. Now I know. Equatorial PV installations are useless unless their transmission terminates as far away as the northern hemisphere, eg. EU consumption.
Technically the biggest limitation is power transport. Else the equator would be ringed with solar power installations.

So.
Morocco is currently of interest because of its proximity to Spain and the European grid.

Who specifically, what organization, is suppose to fund and construct PV installation and transmission lines to export surplus electricity to Spain from Morocco, if not the ideal ring around the equator?

Not being a member, I'm ignorant about Club of Rome networking activities in Morocco.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Aug 13th, 2017 at 03:30:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
LOL! Impute any assumptions you want to what I say. But I do believe that African countries should build their own PV installations for their own people and their neighbors with what ever money can be pried from the hands of their own elites. That is what governments ought do, even if so doing is the exception and not the rule in most countries today - notably so in the USA.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Aug 13th, 2017 at 03:51:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I do believe that African countries should build their own PV installations for their own people and their neighbors with what ever money can be pried from the hands of their own elites.

Have you any recent examples to support this belief?

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Aug 13th, 2017 at 04:00:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It was a normative, not a positive statement, and NO, I have no examples that spring to mind - sadly. The general situation regarding leadership in most of Africa is dispiriting. But then so is it in the USA.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Aug 14th, 2017 at 01:44:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Equatorial climates tend to be suboptimal because they involve lots of rain and cloud cover. Desert climates like the Sahara are ideal, and not just because of their proximity to Europe. Transmission costs need not be excessive once economies of scale are achieved.  The Sahara isn't much good for anything else. It could be a very good export and foreign currency earner for Saharan countries were it not for political instability threatening installations and transmission lines. Failing that, southern Spain would be the ideal locations were it not for a lack of political imagination.

Note, however, that production tends to peak around midday which might limit power availability at other times.  Ideally an east west middle eastern and north African grid spanning form Saudi to Morocco would provide power throughout most of European daylight (and peak demand) hours. In the longer term, a global grid extending all the way to Mexico could provide power throughout northern hemisphere daily demand cycles and valuable revenue and employment for more southern countries. (In return, northern installations could provide wind power for more southern countries at night or in winter).

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Sun Aug 13th, 2017 at 06:23:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, on either side of the equator by 20 degrees I should have said. Namibia is another great location. It could power South Africa and most of Africa south of the equator if adequately built out. Similarly with Mozambique on the east coast. Solar thermal and east-west interconnects could stretch the time period served.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Aug 14th, 2017 at 01:49:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A north south Namibia Sahara interconnect could also help to re-balance summer/winter production peaks more in line with demand cycles.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Aug 14th, 2017 at 10:30:16 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I was hoping for a closely-held Belgian cartel, yanno, to close the arc of land-grabbing history, but these are the north Africans who TuNur is fronting.

"Main Shareholders"
Nur Energie: UK hedge fund
Armonia LLC: US hedge fund
Low Carbon: UK hedge fund
Zammit Group: a Maltese mafia
Cluster energie tunisie: crude, gas, agro, mining, electricity FTA tenders (by currency value)

Main "Stakeholders"
République Tunisienne Ministère de l'Industrie? Not so much

Let's recap: sparsely populated, R2P-shorn, unemployed beneficiaries of DESERTEC seek high-stake ROI from inverted FDI (formerly known as tax evasion, off-shore tax shelters).


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Aug 9th, 2017 at 01:23:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Loving Rome means cleaning it up
What constitutes a "mafia"? The term was first applied to Sicily's Cosa and also to a criminal organization in the United States. In Italy it is also widely used to refer to the Camorra in Campania, and the `Ndraghetta in Calabria. Article 416 of the Italian Criminal Code states "an organisation is of a mafia-type when those participating in it take advantage of the organisation's power of intimidation and of the resulting conditions of submission and omertà (culture of silence) in order to commit criminal offences..." By this definition, is there a [Maltese] mafia?


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sat Aug 12th, 2017 at 02:18:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Dodgy investors with hot money will fill the void if state investors don't have the political will, imagination, resources and access to low interest capital to take the initiative on what would be perceived as high risk and hugely capital intensive projects. Ideally the EU would enter into state level cooperation agreements with Saharan countries.  The amount of capital required to generate economies of scale and profit margins sufficient to cover interest costs might preclude smaller entities from taking the lead, although pension funds might like the long term return characteristics of such projects. Get rich quick small scale investers, less so.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Aug 14th, 2017 at 10:40:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:25:09 PM EST
Warring factions are splitting Bitcoin in 2 - Mashable


 The wild world of Bitcoin is about to get a whole lot wilder.

On August 1, 2017, the preeminent cryptocurrency is set to break in two. Two warring factions, fundamentally divided on Bitcoin's future, are coming to a head -- and the impending split could either save Bitcoin or doom it.

The split, called a hard fork, will result in two separate and distinct cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin. Oh, and it also has the potential to create billions of dollars worth of new cryptocurrency out of thin air.

But that's not what this is really about. Bitcoin as it currently stands is in trouble, and with so much money on the line opposing parties have naturally come forward with plans to save it. And, surprise, they all don't agree on the solution.

by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:40:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
is the foil for law and order and a reliable protagonist in social media pulp fiction.
Legality of bitcoin by country or territory

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 11:38:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
seems to me that the problem is less about bitcoin and more about the trackability of electronic money. It is becoming increasingly difficult to move even modest sums around as cash in the UK.

Any payment into a bank account fof £5k and more instantly gets signalled to the police as a potential for drug trafficking. You actually have to prove your innocence, as I once did when I was signing on to the DWP.

It also explains the popularity of Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBT) in betting shops around the UK, which are the best money laundering scams for small time drug dealers going. They regularise the dark economy and allow the Treasury to keep tabs on what's happening. their role in keeping the impoverished down is just colatteral damage.

So bitcoin becomes popular because cash is treated as suspect by the authorities. Which creates more problems than the clampdown on cash was supposed to solve. Authoritarianism is always the problem.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 02:21:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A must read if you are interested in the history of misogyny in Ireland.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 08:57:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What is his name and to where did he escape?
The answers is: Tenets of patriarchy form the foundational story of misogyny wherever "civilization" has thrived.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 11:31:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Misogyny thrived long before that oaf got drunk and will continue to thrive long after we're all dead. Because it is in the interests of the powerful that the status quo remain unchanged.

So long as we can point fingers at Saudi Arabia and say we're better than they are, what has anyone got to worry about, eh?

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 02:34:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Arkansas often says "Thank God for Mississippi" for the very same reason. It seems all important not to be the very bottom rung.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue Aug 8th, 2017 at 12:36:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Bus seats mistaken for burqas by members of anti-immigrant group
A Norwegian anti-immigrant group has been roundly ridiculed after members apparently mistook a photograph of six empty Oslo bus seats posted on its Facebook page for a group of women wearing burqas.

"Tragic", "terrifying" and "disgusting" were among the comments posted by members of the closed Fedrelandet viktigst, or "Fatherland first", group beneath the photograph, according to screenshots on the Norwegian news website Nettavisen.

Other members of the 13,000-strong group, for people "who love Norway and appreciate what our ancestors fought for", wondered whether the non-existent passengers might be carrying bombs or weapons beneath their clothes. "This looks really scary," wrote one. "Should be banned. You can't tell who's underneath. Could be terrorists."

by Bernard on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 07:59:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
We love norway and everything our ancestors fought for; they fought for the right to stand at the back of the bus and seats must be banned forever.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 02:36:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Didn't their ancestors mainly fight the Swedes?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 03:22:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:25:13 PM EST
Today -100: August 2, 1917: Others Take Notice
Frank Little, one of the leaders of the Industrial Workers of the World, is lynched. Six masked men grab him from his boarding house in Butte, Montana, in his underwear, and hang him from a railway trestle. Pinned to his corpse is a card reading: "Others take notice. First and last warning. 3-7-77 L D C S S W T." The number is a reference to the nineteenth-century Vigilantes of Montana, the initials presumably those of the next men to be murdered. Little had been organizing miners and talking shit about US soldiers ("Uncle Sam's scabs in uniform") and the war ("capitalist slaughter fest"). ...


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Aug 2nd, 2017 at 11:53:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Law and Order in Montana 3-7-77

Vigilantes are an often revered part of Montana's history. From Absarokee to Zurich, tales are told to elementary, middle-school, and high-school students about "vigilante justice" that was nothing if not swift. Helena, the capital, even boasts its own tribute to the vigilantes with a "Vigilantes Day" including a parade and other events. But perhaps the greatest tribute Montana has given them is the symbol 3-7-77 on the patch worn by Montana Highway Patrol troopers across the state. The numbers were added to the shoulder patch in 1956 and added a final gloss of respectability to the actions of the original law enforcement group. Promoted to chief administrator that year, Alex Stephenson personally designed the new insignia as a tribute to law and order. "We chose the symbol," he explained later, "to keep alive the memory of this first people's police force."

 « click for more info »

Numbers 3-7-77 pnned on the back of a lynched man hanging from the famous Helena Hanging Tree

The Year Montana Rounded Up Citizens for Shooting Off Their Mouths | SmithsonianMag |

The vast majority of people were rounded up for casual statements, off-the-cuff remarks deemed pro-German or anti-American. Citizens turned against one another, joining "patriotic" organizations like the Montana Loyalty League with its stated goal of keeping the Treasure State from "going over body and soul to the Kaiser."

Montana's law fortified the restrictions in the Espionage Act, which Congress passed with the full support of the Woodrow Wilson administration in June 1917, two months after America entered World War I. It was intended to root out saboteurs, making it a crime to interfere with U.S. war efforts or to promote the country's enemies, but that wasn't enough for Montana. Paranoia rippled across the state, fueled by newspapers like the Billings Gazette and the Helena Independent with the latter featuring an October column asking:

    Are the Germans about to bomb the capital of Montana? Have they spies in the mountain fastnesses equipped with wireless stations and aeroplanes? Do our enemies fly around our high mountains where formerly only the shadow of the eagle swept?

The anti-German fervor of the day wasn't unique to Montana, but what lead to the Sedition Law was deeper and shadier than simply misguided notions of patriotism. The majority of the state legislature, and newspaper editorial boards, were beholden to the Anaconda Copper Mining Company. One of the largest mining companies in the world, Anaconda Copper sought to quash political dissenters and union organizers such as the Industrial Workers of the World. (In the summer of 1917, anti-war labor organizer Frank Little was dragged out of a Butte boarding house and lynched from a railroad trestle.) In February 1918, Governor Sam Stewart called an emergency session of the legislature and within days the Montana Sedition Law passed. There was little opposition to the harshest law in the country, one that criminalized vague notions of "disloyal, profane, violent...or abusive language." It passed unanimously.

Pardons Granted 88 Years After Crimes of Sedition | NY Times - May 3, 2006 |

by Oui on Thu Aug 3rd, 2017 at 05:55:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
  1. 551 Jews were executed in Romania
  2. US Department of War is established
&tc

I note with interest: The majority populations of the world are sorely under-represented in this compendium of Serious Figures and Significant Events.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Mon Aug 7th, 2017 at 02:50:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Tue Aug 1st, 2017 at 07:25:18 PM EST
US-Eng. translit.: anathema n. singular;  anathemas, plural; etym. the wringer through millennia of RC ecclesiastic and vulgate Latin translations of koine Greek translations of Hebrew Talmud in which both articles were lost-- to pretension.

Ambiguous Contemporary Usage: Mountain Dew is anathema to/for ___.

As if divinity per se, a sacrifice or a gift to a to forebear death or even a curse. Rather it is an appositive seeking a subject, "Bretz knew such a notion would be anathema to his fellow geologists."

Let's add superlative modifier, egregious, perhaps for emphasis.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Aug 4th, 2017 at 09:21:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Cat on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 at 12:39:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
ersatz virgins hanging from in the rafters

Selective Service System

The Selective Service System was established by the Military Selective Service Act (50 U.S.C. app. 451-471a). The act requires the registration of male citizens of the United States and all other male persons who are in the United States and who are ages 18 to 25. The act exempts members of the active Armed Forces and nonimmigrant aliens. Proclamation 4771 of July 20, 1980, requires male persons born on or after January 1, 1960, and who have attained age 18 but have not attained age 26 to register.

The act imposes liability for training and service in the Armed Forces upon registrants who are ages 18 to 26, except those who are exempt or deferred. Persons who have been deferred remain liable for training and service until age 35. Aliens are not liable for training and service until they have remained in the United States for more than1 year. Conscientious objectors who are found to be opposed to all service in the Armed Forces are required to perform civilian work in lieu of induction into the Armed Forces.

The authority to induct registrants [THE DRAFT], including doctors and allied medical specialists, expired July 1, 1973.

Like DESERTEC expect the draft to rise from the ashes fully pledged.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sat Aug 5th, 2017 at 12:56:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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