Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

22 - 28 January 2018

by Bjinse Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:28:08 PM EST

Your take on this week's news


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by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:29:24 PM EST
Principal of leading school says he will expel students who have a boyfriend or girlfriend
"There are plenty of students that wish to attend Ruthin School without the diversion of romance - and these students can replace those students whose focus is on bf/gf relationships."

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 07:56:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Relationship(s) with the students is restricted to faculty and staff?


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 05:38:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It is, technically speaking, against school rules for students to be in relationships in pretty much every Japanese school. It happens, of course, but there aren't many unambiguous displays of affection in the building.
by Zwackus on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 09:40:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
references
Herzberg's Two-Factor Theory

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 04:59:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Given Japan's birth rate and its subculture of virgin otaku who have no idea how to relate to a woman who doesn't look like an anime Waifu, it may not be entirely clear that this is a wise rule.
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 09:49:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Herbivore's Dilemma
grass-eating men are alarming because they are the nexus between two of the biggest challenges facing Japanese society: the declining birth rate and anemic consumption. Herbivores represent an unspoken rebellion against many of the masculine, materialist values associated with Japan's 1980s bubble economy. Media Shakers, a consulting company [...] estimates that 60 percent of men in their early 20s and at least 42 percent of men aged 23 to 34 consider themselves grass-eating men. Partner Agent, a Japanese dating agency, found in a survey that 61 percent of unmarried men in their 30s identified themselves as herbivores. Of the 1,000 single men in their 20s and 30s polled by Lifenet, a Japanese life-insurance company, 75 percent described themselves as grass-eating men.

Japanese companies are worried that herbivorous boys aren't the status-conscious consumers their parents once were.

At least gaijin loosers are more responsive, or appealing.

Yeah, living in Japan long-term is like living at mom's house, or better, mom's basement. I am in Japan for three weeks after an 8-year absence and I am taking a hard look at the male gaijins who came over on my wave (very late 1980's - very early 1990's) and are still here. They have all made good lives for themselves and seem happy enough. Not everybody can be a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, or even a dentist or lawyer. But down to the person, and there is no exception for a long-term MALE gaijin in Japan, they are ALL low-testosterone underachievers. After 15 years in Japan, I saw it happening to me - and I got the hell out. Had I not, I'd be just like them today. That is what playing the gaijin-game will do to you.

Another tangent:

Japan court rules father legally responsible for secret IVF child

A Japanese court has ruled a father legally responsible for a child who was born after his ex-partner impregnated herself with a frozen embryo without his knowledge.
by das monde on Mon Jan 29th, 2018 at 03:22:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Don't rush to cheer up: EPP wants pan-EU lists for 2024
"The Parliament is the institution that was the most independent of governmental choices, the one which had consistently been the most capable of developing transnational groupings of political forces, the one that was the most imbued with European spirit and had been the most resolute in calling for a limitation of national sovereignty and for supranational development."
[...]
According to the Parliament committee, out of the 73 seats, 46 will be held in reserve for future enlargement and the so-called pan-EU lists.  The remaining 27 seats will be distributed among the 14 EU countries that are currently "slightly under-represented"...However, in order for this to happen, the electoral law should change by a unanimous decision by ministers in the Council, and be ratified by all member states.

archived:
national and transnational lists, degressive proportionality


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 08:56:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
re: BREXIT, Overseas Territories, Crown Dependents, Protectorates, colonies, jurisdiction

Gibraltar gun fans disappointed by EU court ruling

The Luxembourg-based court today shot down Buhagiar's plea, reiterating that Gibraltar's exclusion from the EU's customs area means that the rules of the Treaty and secondary legislation are not applicable to the territory, even if their application would have a positive impact on local services, as claimed by the association.

Picardo's Sammy Wilson Cue: "PM May to Gibraltar: 'Stay British as long as you like'"

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:04:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Seems to be hard for some people to grasp the exit of the UK from the EU means the UK will leave the EU and will not have the rights, privileges, & etc. of EU membership.

Great example of Situational Psychosis

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 05:44:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Might fatbergs in the water table be the cause? Only fMRI could say.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 10:12:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
These are people for whom the sun would never have set on the British English Empire if it wasn't for those sneaky Brussels eurocrats stealing it from us.

As far as they're concerned, the world owes us a living and, as soon as we're free, they'll be beating a path to our door to offer us the most marvellous trade deals you can imagine. Boris  and Dr Fox both assure us it's true. And there'll be at least £350 million a week for the NHS.

....(unless it's just £100 million)

.....(unless Theresa says no)

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:45:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Davos crowd is unimpressed:

UK slips on Davos ice - Politico

Brits may have the second-highest number of delegates at the annual gathering of the global elite here in Davos, but Davos has an answer for their Brexit entreaties: meh.

The Global Britain and "GREAT Britain" campaign push got off to a bad start when Liam Fox and his Department for International Trade tried to shop around the idea of Great Britain themed events. They got a clear "no" from one of the most visible companies here in Davos, M&G Investments, when they pitched the idea of a partnership. M&G has massive EU-based business. Dow Jones eventually took the bait and is doing an event with Fox.

Philip Souta, representing law and lobbying firm Clifford Chance, looks at the Brexit issue with dread: "Because it's a black hole that sucks up the whole [U.K.] government." Souta is convinced that the Brexit talks are not symmetrical, meaning the U.K. is doomed to a middling to bad outcome.

by Bernard on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 09:16:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Germany's Social Democrats only 4 points ahead of far-right AfD - Politico
BERLIN -- A new poll places Martin Schulz's Social Democrats (SPD) only four points ahead of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD).

If there were an election today, the SPD would receive 18 percent of the vote while the AfD would receive 14, according to an INSA poll published Tuesday.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats and Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union, would receive 31.5 percent. The Greens and Free Democrats (FDP), meanwhile, would come in at 10 percent, and the Left at 11 percent. The AfD has remained steady at 14 percent for the past several weeks.

The results mark a new low for the SPD, which suffered a major defeat in September's federal election, when it received 20.5 percent of the vote.

The AfD, meanwhile, has seen a rise from its September result of 12.6 percent.

by Bernard on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:08:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
However:

Germany's SPD sees spike in applicants ahead of coalition talks - DW

The Social Democrats (SPD) have recorded a sudden increase in memberships. The German party's youth wing, Jusos, is campaigning for new members to influence the final vote on governing with Angela Merkel's conservatives.

Social Democrat delegates have had their say: After a narrow vote of 56.1 percent, it's full steam ahead for talks to form a "grand coalition" (GroKo) with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives. But before any deal is signed, 440,000 SPD members will have the final say. "GroKo or NoGroKo" -- that will be the question. But that number of party members could be set to rise.

by Bernard on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:11:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So the youth wing is trying to mobilise new members for a NO vote. Any polling on the members or gut feeling for how this will go?

If there is a no, will there be a new party leadership contest?

by fjallstrom on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 03:17:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I dunno, but the young socialists sure are trying hard:

SPD activists seek help of Momentum to dash German coalition deal - Guardian

Members of Germany's Social Democratic party are turning to the Labour grassroots movement Momentum for advice on how to derail a coalition deal with Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union.

Delegates of Martin Schulz's SPD gave a reluctant green light on Sunday to continue talks about renewing the GroKo (grand coalition) that has governed Germany for the past four years.

But the 440,000 members of the centre-left party could plunge the country into turmoil when they get a final vote on the coalition agreement next month.

Invigorated by the close-run result at the weekend, the people behind the #NoGroKo campaign are seeking inspiration from the tactics that helped Jeremy Corbyn to a surprise victory in the 2015 Labour leadership election.

Also, some reading for later: Is Another Youth Rebellion in the Making? - American Prospect

by Bernard on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 09:32:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Germany's coalition talks: What happens next? - DW
Four months after parliamentary elections, formal coalition talks begin Friday between Germany's conservatives -- Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party the Christian Social Union (CSU) -- and the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD).

Merkel has said that she wants to conclude the negotiations by February 12. In 2013, the formal coalition talks for the current partnership with the SPD took three weeks.

It is, however, likely that the talks will not be plain sailing, with leftists in the SPD already voicing anger at a number of agreements struck in preliminary talks, especially with regard to income tax, family reunifications for refugees and health insurance.

Always the "leftists" fault, obviously. As for the "What happens next?" part:
The full 440,000-strong SPD membership has been promised a say at the conclusion of negotiations as to whether they accept the coalition contract that has been drawn up. And that vote is anything but certain in view of the divisions within the party with regard to the inevitable concessions that will have to be made.
by Bernard on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 06:53:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"contract that has been drawn up"

Help to understand the meaning of contract here.
Is a document --induenturre?-- enumerating obligations of the political groups' signatories (wholly or individually) who administer state funds a customary?

How is such a "contract" enforceable?

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 07:06:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Disclaimer: I'm not a native German speaker. I think the DW piece is referring to what is called Koalitionsvertrag in Germany and loosely translated as "coalition contract" by DW - We Europeans are generally not native English speakers. Vertrag can be translated as agreement, but also, yes, contract, or even treaty (such the infamous Versailler Vertrag in 1919). Germans tend to be quite formal when doing business: during a project with a German customer, our interlocutors always insisted that each details of the deliverables, acceptance criteria, technical training and support must be specified "in the contract".

It's no surprise that a coalition agreement between political parties be written down in a formal document. There are several Wiki pages (nur auf Deutsch) documenting past "coalition contracts".

by Bernard on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 09:20:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you for that information. I will investigate.

Sorry for any confusion, too. I meant to type indenture. I don't know what happened there.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 11:24:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As far as I know it is not enforceable, though it uses the same word you'd use for a legal contract. In fact it is probably illegal since parliamentarians are only bound by their own conscience according to the constitution. So basically the buying and selling of those consciences is what the coalition agreement is all about.
In practice it is enforced in the same way that party discipline is enforced: Since you vote for a party and not a person the placement on the list is all important. And if MPs get silly they might be forgotten when the list is made.
by generic on Mon Jan 29th, 2018 at 12:40:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The Catalan independence parody with its own president - BBC
Tabarnia is an imaginary region of Catalonia created by Spanish unionists as an online parody of the Catalonian independence movement.

So popular has it become that activists have now taken the joke one step further by unveiling theatre actor Albert Boadella as the pretend "president" of the fictional region, at a packed press conference in Barcelona.

Boadella was sworn in via a video link from his "exile" in Madrid, an undisguised dig at Catalonia's deposed former leader Carles Puigdemont, who has spent the last few months abroad to avoid charges of sedition, rebellion and misappropriation of funds at home.

So-called Tabarnians seek to ridicule the ambitions of Catalan separatists by campaigning for Tabarnia to secede from Catalonia and remain part of Spain.

by Bernard on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 08:51:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
SZ
In dem als Tätigkeitsbericht für die Jahre 2012 bis 2015 herausgegebenen Report heißt es, der Forschungsverein habe auf Empfehlung seines Beirates eine "Kurzzeit-Inhalationsstudie mit Stickstoffdioxid bei gesunden Menschen gefördert". Stickstoffdioxid (NO2) ist jener Schadstoff, dessen Messwerte von VW in den USA jahrelange manipuliert worden waren, um die gesetzlichen Grenzwerte für Dieselfahrzeuge offiziell einzuhalten. In Wirklichkeit wurden die Grenzwerte um ein Vielfaches überschritten. Laut EUGT-Report wurde die Wirkung unterschiedlicher NO2-Konzentrationen in der Atemluft auf 25 gesunde Versuchspersonen untersucht.

Daimler distanziert sich von Versuchen Es habe "keine Reaktion auf das inhalierte NO2 nachgewiesen" werden können. Es hätten auch "keine entzündlichen Wirkungen von NO2 an den Atemwegen festgestellt" werden können. Daimler ist dennoch entsetzt über das, was da im Namen der deutschen Autoindustrie geschah. "Wir distanzieren uns ausdrücklich von der Studie und der EUGT", erklärte der Stuttgarter Autohersteller am Sonntag zu den Menschenversuchen. "Wir sind über das Ausmaß der Studien und deren Durchführung erschüttert." Und weiter: "Wir verurteilen die Versuche auf das Schärfste." Daimler betonte, man habe keinen Einfluss auf den Versuchsaufbau gehabt. Der Konzern habe "eine umfassende Untersuchung eingeleitet, wie es dazu kommen konnte". Das Vorgehen der EUGT "widerspricht unseren Werten und ethischen Prinzipien".

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Mon Jan 29th, 2018 at 02:22:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:29:26 PM EST
re: antitrust action, 21st Cen Fox, Sky, Walt Disney

Fox deal for Sky not in public interest - UK regulator

The UK government, which will take the final decision on the deal, asked the Competition and Markets Authority to judge if Murdoch had too much influence in Britain and would uphold broadcasting standards. The CMA said today that the deal as proposed went against the public interest because it would give the Murdoch family too much control over the provision of news.
[...]
It said that recent allegations of sexual harassment at his Fox News organisation in the US did not call into question his commitment to upholding standards in Britain.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 04:24:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Given the extent to which the Tories are owned by Murdoch, this is an astonishing decision.... unless he's been granted something worse under the table

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:40:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
EU removes Panama and seven others from tax-haven blacklist
[Panama,] Barbados, Grenada, South Korea, Macao, Mongolia, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates joined Panama as jurisdictions delisted.
[...]
The eight delisted jurisdictions have been moved to a so-called grey list, which includes other 47 jurisdictions that have committed to changing their tax rules to abide by EU standards on transparency and cooperation.

archived: Happy Vanuatu Day
The awkward process of legislating recommendations
"hird part `calls, therefore, on the Commission to regard Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Ireland and Malta as EU tax havens;' [REJECTED]"
[S&D] MEPs try to add EU member states to the blacklist of tax havens
a raft of documents addressing tax avoidance and evasion

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 04:33:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I guess those ocuntries offered a deal for the ECB to launder some of their dirtier money at very good rates.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:46:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:29:29 PM EST

White evangelical Protestants, who overwhelmingly voted for President Donald Trump, are especially supportive of Israel. Seventy-eight percent of white evangelicals say they sympathize with Israel, while only 5 percent expressed sympathy for Palestinians.
[...]
The deep divide between Republicans and Democrats in their views of Israel also extends to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
[...]
The Pew report comes as Vice President Mike Pence wrapped-up his four-day tour of the Middle East. In a speech at the Knesset Monday, the vice president announced plans to open a U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, moving it from Tel Aviv, by the end of 2019.

archived:
Christian Zionists Collude with Alt-right Trump

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 06:37:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
that's cos they can't wait for Nu Armageddon, the destruction of Israel, the conversion of the Jews and the immediate direct rule of Christ.

or some such nonsense.

probably involving the torture of gays and droit de seigneur rights over all non-evangelical women who can be "saved" by the gracious attentions of the righteous

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:48:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
o, Helen. Destruction of Israel is not what evangelicals are after. 'Tis UNITY of the GOTT's chosen people and BIRTH, most high, wot come of destruction of teh infidels. Forsooth the covenant with GOTT is cultivated from the marrow of US Americans, no matter how desultory, generation by generation.

As it happens a reading of The Narrative of Sojourner Truth (1850) waylaid my inspection of the Employment of Women this week. On account of the many preposterous comparisons made by Fifth Wave defenders to S.Truth and Rosa Parks, specifically, to "Auntie" Oprah's prophetic Golden Globes speech.

Isabelle van Wagener's narrative sharply reminded me of the several Great Awakenings (four, tho' the last being contested by academics too close to contemporary partisan analyses). My desire to "visualize" these "organic" periods in relation to foreign and domestic wars caused me to take up exercises in plotting time[!] lines by both R and Excel methods. But I digress.

Sojourner inadvertently reported her own part in the proselytizing hysteria of the second tide (1800-1840 or so) over New York and Connecticut states. While one today may express skepticism about the authenticity of her transcription of her story, her part as peripatetic impresario of the virtues of utter abnegation and penury is indisputable. Among several remarkable episodes of evangelical "cult" activities she encountered, there is THE MATTHIAS IMPOSTURE.

He repeatedly urged his wife to accompany him on a mission to convert the world, declaring that food could be obtained from the roots of the forest, if not administered otherwise. At this time he assumed the name of Matthias, called himself a Jew, and set out on a mission, taking a western course, and visiting a brother at Rochester, a skillful mechanic, since dead. Leaving his brother, he proceeded on his mission over the Northern States, occasionally returning to Albany.... Her faith was at first staggered by his declaring himself a Jew; but on this point she was relieved by his saying, 'Do you not remember how Jesus prayed?' and repeated part of the Lord's Prayer, in proof that the Father's kingdom was to come, and not the Son's. She then understood him to be a converted Jew, and in the conclusion she says she 'felt as if God had sent him to set up the kingdom.'

Subsequently, she was defrauded of what little cash she'd saved by his 'disciples', but of course.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 07:59:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Here is Nate Silver 538 promoting statistical proof that Americans gerrymandered themselves. Because segregation. By um political party. Not sex discrimination -- because males and female integrated living.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 10:05:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's like Tory gov on both sides of the table.
Here readers are led to believe are Trump's 'cheeseburger summit' demands w/e 21 Jan. This implies Schumer arrived with a verbal "DACA fix" proposal omitting one or more of these items ... before withdrawing $28B wall funding. Ask yourself, "SELF! which items are mission critical to fulfilling amnesty and naturalization v.18?"

  1. serious border security
  2. end to chain migration
  3. cancellation to the outdated and unsafe visa lottery, and
  4. a permanent solution to DACA

1 No. Pat I-II dependent agencies' budgets already pump bond funding for "national security" 100 years into the future of county, municipal, state, and 'US territory' budgets.
2 No. My understanding is, "chain migration" is a euphemism for a set of regulations, arbitrarily applied, extending residency and ultimately naturalization to any and all relatives of 'Anchor'0. Past, current, and future extent of use (T/F) is off sides.
3 No. The lottery is a racket inside EU and HB1 preferential treatment.
4 Yes. This is exactly personal qualifications and amnesty for Anchor0 + immediate family and "path to citizenship".

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 12:00:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Trump Cabinet secretary: If the world doesn't like Trump at Davos, "They can leave"

"Davos should be very flattered that he has chosen this as a forum, and so those that don't want to listen to him, you can -- they can leave!" Chao stated.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 06:53:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
.... and don't call it the "West Bank" ... it's Judea and Samaria ... come on in and let's talk democracy, a one state solution??

Trump: No more aid unless Palestinians talk peace; Jerusalem is `off the table' | Times of Israel |

DAVOS, Switzerland -- In unscripted remarks to the press on Thursday, US President Donald Trump said the US would no longer transfer monetary aid to the Palestinians unless they entered peace negotiations with Israel, and excoriated the Palestinian leadership's reaction to his decision last month to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

 « click for more info »
Trump to Netanyahu: Palestinians 'disrespected' Pence and stand to lose aid (JTA)

Sitting alongside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before their bilateral meeting at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Trump called Palestinian Authority officials' unwillingness to meet with members of his administration -- including US Vice President Mike Pence during his visit to the region last week -- "disrespectful."

PA President Mahmoud Abbas has also recently sought to have European powers replace the United States as the primary mediator in Middle East peace talks.

Holocaust Nakam or Avengers

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:27:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Independent | Donald Trump booed at Davos after attacking 'nasty, mean, fake' press

Donald Trump has been booed at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos after launching an attack on what he described as the "nasty, mean and fake" press.

"It wasn't until I became a politician, that I realised how nasty, how mean, how vicious and how fake the press can be," Mr Trump said. Pointing into the crowd, he added: "... as the cameras start going off in the back."

The comment was met by a mixture of boos and laughter from the audience.

Wished they'd used the "and laughter" part in the headline.  Trump cannot stand being laughed at, he can't handle it, and so it's the best line of attack.


She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 05:14:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]

'boring'

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sat Jan 27th, 2018 at 01:13:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is this for real?

 « click for more info »

The salesman in Davos illustrating he is not alone on this planet?

The empire crumbles, Trump part of god's plan for Amerika?

George Bush speech in Texas for conversion of the Jews
My speech for George W. Bush | Jewish Journal |
Christian eschatology

God certainly moves in strange ways ...

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 07:36:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
George W. Bush's favorable rating has pulled a complete 180
Six in 10 Americans, 61%, say they now have a favorable view of the 43rd President of the United States in the latest CNN poll conducted by SSRS, nearly double the 33% who gave him a favorable mark when he left the White House in January 2009.

featuring video presentation of His good works. Missions of Mercy. In Zambia.
< wipes tears >


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 05:19:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 05:52:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Obama got a Nobel prize for not being Bush. For not being Trump, Bush gets a re-appraisal; "at least he wasn't Trump"

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 06:13:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How many wars has Trump started? At least he isn't Bush (so far).
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 07:53:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
69% say the economy is good now.
So yeah. DNC is going to have some challenges "flipping seats" unless Trump indeed shoots a real 'merican Democratic Party candidate in Time Sq. before 5 Nov '18.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 08:47:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Strike that. Insert:
DNC is going to have some challenges filling seats vacated by GOP assault rats unless Trump indeed shoots a real 'merican Democratic Party candidate in Time Sq. before 5 Nov '18.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 08:51:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No "new" wars strictly speaking: the previous POTUSes have amply provided, thank you very much. But still, an intensification of "old" wars, with an ever increased use of drone strikes.

Should Trump start a new war in, say, Asia, it could go real ugly, real fast.

by Bernard on Sun Jan 28th, 2018 at 09:27:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:29:32 PM EST
Indian PM Narendra Modi warns of three major global threats - DW
Modi singled out three major challenges mankind was facing right now. He said the greatest threat came from rapid climate change and the resulting extreme weather conditions, natural disasters and rising sea levels which threaten the lives and livelihoods of millions of people around the world.

The prime minister identified terrorism, and the radicalization of people in many societies, as the second-biggest threat. Without providing concrete examples, he criticized world powers for, in his eyes, making the problem worse by artificially distinguishing between "bad terrorists" and "good terrorists."

by Bernard on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:13:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
India is going to be hit hard by GW as the country is heavily dependent on Himalayan snow pack for water.  To make things even more interesting the Indus river valley divides* Pakistan and India and a reduced water flow will heighten tensions twixt and 'tween 'em.

Considering both countries have nuclear weapons things could get quickly "interesting"

* in more ways than one

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 05:50:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Given the willingness of extremist muslims and especailly hindus in India to go stamping around slaughtering people in the name of their religion, I think Modi should be looking internally for his terrorism problems.

But he won't cos his Hindu nationalism is part of the problem.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 07:56:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Without providing concrete examples

Could he be thinking of the 2002 Gujarat riots?

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 08:05:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brazil braces for corruption appeal that could make or break ex-president  - Guardian
Brazil is bracing for a historic court decision which could remove the most popular leader in modern Brazilian history from an election he is currently poised to win - and may prove devastating to the leftwing Workers' party he founded.

Nerves are stretched taut ahead of Wednesday's appeals court decision, in which three judges will decide whether or not to uphold the conviction of former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on corruption and money laundering charges.

Lula - who is still hugely popular after his 2003-2010 two-term presidency - is currently the early favourite in October's presidential election.

Porto Alegre's rightwing mayor Nelson Marchezan asked for the army to protect the city from thousands of Lula supporters expected to descend. The Workers' party president, Gleisi Hoffmann, said last week that for Lula to be arrested, "they will have to kill people" - although she later qualified the remark.

Authorities have closed airspace over the court, sealed off the surrounding streets, and plan to deploy helicopters, elevated observation platforms and even rooftop sharpshooters.

by Bernard on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:15:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Brazil: Court upholds President Lula corruption conviction - DW
A Brazilian appeals court on Wednesday rejected an appeal by former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva against a June 2017 graft conviction and nine-and-a-half-year prison sentence.

Two judges on the three-judge panel ruled to uphold the conviction and extend the original sentence by nearly three years.

Wednesday's decision casts doubt on whether Lula can make good on his intention to run for presidency in 2018. A candidate is legally ineligible to run if they have a confirmed criminal conviction.

But Lula can appeal Wednesday's decision to higher courts. That route could delay a final conviction until after the August 15 deadline for candidates to register for the 2018 election and allow the former president to enter the race.

by Bernard on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 09:24:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Japan, Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam:

TPP under new management

The minister told the FT that the deal, now called the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, will likely be signed in Chile on March 8.
[...]
The pact came together after the members agreed to suspend provisions relating to intellectual property and other thorny issues.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 06:05:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Does that mean that the US can join now? Or were they only interested in it because of those "thorny issues"?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 06:53:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
To the contrary: I imagine, when someone tells Trump what's going on, somehow he'll sue Canada and Mexico.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 07:32:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Turkey renames UAE embassy street after minister row - BBC
Turkey has symbolically renamed a street where the United Arab Emirates' embassy is located in Ankara, following a diplomatic spat between the nations.

The street has been named Fahreddin Pasha Road, after an Ottoman military commander the UAE foreign minister appeared to criticise online.

The BBC concludes with:

In 1981, revolutionary Iran renamed the street where the British Embassy was located after IRA hunger striker Bobby Sands.
by Bernard on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 09:09:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Dutch hackers infiltrated Cozy Bear HQ in an university building at Kremlin's Red Square. Once inside the Cozy Bear computer network the Dutch managed to  take control of the security camera at the entrance to the computer room. A photo of each person entering the secure location was gathered. All the intelligence was shared real time with the NSA as the Dutch civil (AIVD) and military intelligence (MIVD) are part of the AngloSaxon nine-eyes spy network.

The Russians succeeded to infiltrate inside the White House and compromise e-mail and communications traffic.

In July 2015 Cozy Bear infiltrated DNC computer systems.

Further reading in my new diary @BooMan

Dutch Hackers Infiltrated Kremlin's Cozy Bear in 2014

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 10:01:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Dutch intelligence AIVD had infiltrated Cozy Bear .... for appearances only did the government make the following statement.

Russian hackers use Dutch polls as practice | DW - March 2017 |

The Dutch government, like its German and French counterparts, fears that Russia is trying to influence the upcoming election through hacking schemes and by spreading fake news. Thessa Lageman reports.

It shouldn't really come as a surprise, but the audacity remains breathtaking: In the past six months, foreign countries, in particular Russia, have tried hacking email accounts of Dutch government employees in at least 100 cases. That figure was recently revealed by Rob Bertholee, head of the Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service (AIVD).

He said the hackers had attempted to gather sensitive information about government positions. One of their targets was the Ministry of General Affairs, where Prime Minister Mark Rutte's office is also located. Back in December, Rutte had already said his government was aware of potential foreign interference in next Wednesday's election.

Rutte and his party VVD gains after PR battle with Erdogan
Dutch PM Rutte's VVD comes out on top

For your eyes only ...

Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.

by Oui on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 09:24:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:30:27 PM EST
Great Wall launches EV r&d center in Austria
The center will initially develop electric motors and related control systems for EVs, the company said. Great Wall plans to invest 20 million euros (157 million yuan) in the operation by 2020.

Great Wall markets only one EV, a compact sedan. It is expected to launch a plug-in hybrid crossover under its premium Wey band in the first quarter of this year. To expand EV production under China's upcoming carbon credit program, Great Wall acquired a 25 percent stake in Hebei Yuejie Industry Co. last year.


Balance of Market Power
VW Group edges GM in 2017 sales race
"Volkswagen Group said its various brands sold 4.18 million vehicles in China last year"

archived:
China launches largest carbon market in the world
"The EU climate commissioner also announced "enhanced cooperation" between the EU and China on emission trading"

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 09:20:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sugar Cane Workers Claim Chemical Sprays Made Them Sick
In a lawsuit filed Jan. 17 in Palm Beach County Court, the anonymous plaintiffs say sugar production giant Central Romana Corp. and other Dominican growers exposed them to the dangerous herbicide compounds without providing adequate protective equipment and training.
[...]
Fanjul Corp., the putative parent company for Central Romana, is named as a defendant alongside Biesterfeld International [GmbH and BIESTERFILD US], a multinational industrial distributor that allegedly exported some of the herbicides cited in the complaint, namely MSMA, Ametrina and Terbutrina.
WHAT ARE TARIFF RATE QUOTA?
"The Dominican Republic receives the largest single-country allocation under the U.S. Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ), the import quota allocation. A TRQ permits a certain quantity of sugar to enter the U.S. at a reduced customs duty during a quota period; quantities in excess of the quota are subject to a higher duty rate. In 2016, the Dominican Republic's share of the TRQ was 17%, more than any other country."
A subset of the plaintiffs were allegedly exposed to the herbicides while working for Dominican conglomerate Grupo Vicini, though that company is not named as a defendant...Central Romana, Fanjul Corp., and their related companies Domino Foods and Florida Crystals, are part of a multibillion-dollar sugar production empire held by brothers Alfonso Fanjul Jr., Jose "Pepe" Fanjul and the Fanjul family, according to the court documents.

WTO legit, as the children say.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 05:57:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Poland flinches at renewables target, revives nuclear prospects
Poland's ruling Law and Justice (PiS), which sees renewable energy as unstable and a threat to the country's heavily coal-reliant industry, has imposed regulations slowing down investment in onshore wind farms. In order to lower carbon emissions in the future, Tchorzewski has offered to build a nuclear power plant. On Thursday he said that the financing scheme for the nuclear project was almost ready, backing up comments he made in September about Poland's atomic prospects.

archived:
Preparation for Katowice Climate Talks Nov 2017

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 12:46:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:30:30 PM EST
DICTION CORNER: fake news, syn. propaganda

MEPs bare teeth in debate over Russian propaganda

Julian King, the European Commissioner for Security, was present during the debate and recalled that the Commission had opened a public consultation on fake news, which ends on 23 February. "The aim of this campaign is to show that fake news is real. We need to knock down this propaganda".

Facebook tries out charm offensive with four EU Commissioners

he spent much of her speech explaining how the tech giant is taking down posts and user accounts that promote [PROPAGANDA]--one of the areas where Gabriel is trying to make her mark before the Commission's term ends next year.

Gabriel is in charge of an EU strategy on [PROPAGANDA]. She will announce details of the plan in May, but has already said that she wants to address how [PROPAGANDA] is financed, and include measures to make social media platforms more transparent.

archived:
"To your point about TNCs corrupting diverse national policies..." [1]
How to tame the tech titans - The Economist
Gallup/Knight Foundation Survey on Trust, Media and Democracy (USA)
A Trip to the Woodshed
" And I gather that all of your companies have moved beyond any notion that your job is only to provide a platform, and whatever goes across it is not your affair?"

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Tue Jan 23rd, 2018 at 08:47:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by generic on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 12:18:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
So yeah. Here's a tragic testament on fortunes of war, pernicious truths and reconciliation, and propaganda, I suppose. Too harsh?
Colonialism a cause to celebrate in Singapore
I was last in Singapore about 20 years ago. There for a month on business. Spent my down time by the pool, drinking at Raffles, browsing duty-free at the mall, and the odd field trip into the 'burbs with my chaperone, Mrs Liu. She put me wise to Changi Memorial and local lore. No love lost then for the Empire. Yet here we are.
The city-state turned 50 in 2015, a Golden Jubilee celebrated with great ceremony and enthusiasm, all branded with merchandise, exhibitions and concerts. Just four years later, in 2019, Singapore will also become 200 years old, commemorating the bicentennial of its "founding."

20 years ago independence was fresh in Mrs Liu's lifetime. The way her people remembered "the fall" of Singapore in WWII was as betrayal, catastrophe.
A marketing campaign launched by the Singapore Tourist Board in October last year to promote the Singapore Tourism Awards features Raffles and Major General William Farquhar, Singapore's first resident and colonial administrator, as a jovial, bumbling pair in search of enjoyment as "Singapore's First Tourists."

Some 5,000 POWs and civilians perished in Changi alone. Mrs Liu believed multiples more died in the occupation.
Thum wrote that involves sweeping "a lot of the horrors of our past under the carpet," namely colonial rule's dispossession of native people, the fact that the port thrived due to the opium trade and slavery, and that British governors routinely used torture and oppression to maintain control.

same old back doors, same old mess o' brexits.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 09:38:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
yes, we were not the kind administrators of the Empire nostalgist mythology favoured by the likes of Niall Ferguson.

And the surrender of Sigapore in WWII was the result of one of the most idiotically stupid military decsions of the war. And, amongst the many many fuckups I could think of, that is quite a claim.

But if ever there was a perfect example of having a hammer and treating every problem as a nail, then this was it. A naval commander who could only imagine Singapore being attacked from the sea and thus having absolutely no land defenses even as the Japanese marched through Burma into Thailand. He was shocked when they turned up in singapore almost without a shot being fired.

No wonder the locals felt betrayed. It's one thing being oppressed by an over-mighty empire with almost infinite stength. It must have been galling to realise they had been enslaved by morons.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 08:08:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reminiscent of the religious whack-job who suppressed research on the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Controversial femur could belong to ancient human relative

"This specimen is really important. It's critical," says Macchiarelli, who has shared his unpublished report with Nature's news team. The femur probably belongs to a species called Sahelanthropus tchadensis, he says. The bone is important because it could settle whether the species is the earliest hominin yet found, as its discoverers have claimed after analysing the skull2. "This is a fantastic occasion to finally tell people what we have, and what we know about this specimen."

The Anthropological Society of Paris told Nature that it had rejected 6 out of 65 abstracts. It said: "This work is conducted by an independent and impartial scientific committee, which is sovereign in its decision. Hence, any accusation about this would not be founded"



She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 05:36:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
wasn't that whack job the Catholic church?

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 08:10:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not the whole RCC, just one Catholic priest whose reading of the archeology was ludicrous and a band of second rate academics on the make.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 05:18:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
the warning I infer from publicity about conflict among the factions who claim ownership--much less possession-- of the information is,
orthodoxy or heterodoxy
is an essential profession of political agreement among people regardless of the scope of their organization, or domains of purported mastery. Withholding quantities and significance of information from interested yet excluded parties is a purposeful action in any case. That is control of a social structure which preserves uncertain divisions of labor and values of knowledge.

Latin literacy or hominin speciation, for example, is a quite esoteric occupation. Though the former has fallen into disuse (Vatican II), the latter still preoccupies the minds of millions "laity" seeking a rationale for natural laws of evolutionary progress, intelligence, prosperity and primacy.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 09:31:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
More simple.

Dicklesnook - Roland de Vaux - couldn't tell the difference between a Roman dining area with eating couches and a medieval monastic scriptorium.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 09:56:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 10:27:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
speaks for a generation of pussy hat knitters and 'whisper list' compilers

Hillary Clinton, Burns Strider, and the Fault Lines of #MeToo

Here is the top line, from The New York Times:

A senior adviser to Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign who was accused of repeatedly sexually harassing a young subordinate was kept on the campaign at Mrs. Clinton's request, according to four people familiar with what took place.

Mrs. Clinton's campaign manager at the time recommended that she fire the adviser, Burns Strider. But Mrs. Clinton did not. Instead, Mr. Strider was docked several weeks of pay and ordered to undergo counseling, and the young woman was moved to a new job.

## Women and Minorities Edition

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sat Jan 27th, 2018 at 12:13:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
does not speak for a generation of pussy hat knitters and 'whisper list' compilers

Sandeep Rehal v. Harvey Weinstein et al., UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

Harvey Weinstein's dirty laundry, but more specifically his used condoms, were laid bare Thursday in a federal complaint from the disgraced Hollywood producer's former personal assistant.

archived:
Jane Doe v. Harvey Weinstein, et al. , UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sat Jan 27th, 2018 at 01:29:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
< pick teeth, suck vigorously >
Esquire Chip next informed his client, that her case must now lie over till the next session of the court, some months in the future. 'The law must take its course,' said he.

'What! wait another court! wait months?' said the persevering mother. 'Why, long before that time, he can go clear off, and take my child with him-no one knows where. I cannot wait; I must have him now, whilst he is to be had.' 'Well,' said the lawyer, very coolly, 'if he puts the boy out of the way, he must pay the $600-one half of which will be yours'; supposing, perhaps, that $300 would pay for a 'heap of children,' in the eye of a slave who never, in all her life, called a dollar her own. But in this instance, he was mistaken in his reckoning. She assured him, that she had not been seeking money, neither would money satisfy her; it was her son, and her son alone she wanted, and her son she must have. Neither could she wait court, not she. The lawyer used his every argument to convince her, that she ought to be very thankful for what they had done for her; that it was a great deal, and it was but reasonable that she should now wait patiently the time of the court.


The Narrative of Sojourner Truth

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Sat Jan 27th, 2018 at 01:49:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:30:33 PM EST
by Bjinse on Mon Jan 22nd, 2018 at 10:30:36 PM EST
Ursula K Le Guin - 1929-2018
The writer Ursula K Le Guin, who has died aged 88, presided over American science fiction for nearly half a century. Her reputation as an author of the first rank, and her role as ambassador for the genres of the fantastic, began in 1968 with her fourth novel, A Wizard of Earthsea. It has not been out of print since.

A few months later, Le Guin published The Left Hand of Darkness (1969), which won both the Hugo and the Nebula awards for its year, and which soon became the novel most heavily taught in universities during the first flourishing of scholarly interest in science fiction as a form of writing peculiarly well adapted to make arguments about the changing world. The book, a quietly revolutionary study in gender, has become a central feminist text.

by Bernard on Wed Jan 24th, 2018 at 07:49:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]

This episode of The Truth Hurts crosses my mind frequently, now that I understand how many females and women suffered in silent desperation until the "coordinated sexual assaults" of New Year 2015 revealed the enemy in thei midst of the Republic. And of course AfD.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 03:10:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Happens to the best of Islamophobes .... In The Hague with Arnoud van Doorn, a city council member of Geert Wilders' PVV populist anti-immigration party.

German far-right AfD politician resigns after converting to Islam | DW |

The far-right, anti-Islam Alternative for Germany (AfD) party confirmed reports in the German media that one of its politicians, Arthur Wagner, has converted to Islam.

...
Wagner, a German of Russian origin, had been a representative of the AfD since 2015. He was a member of the state committee with responsibility for churches and religious communities



Global Warming - distance between America and Europe is steadily increasing.
by Oui on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 08:09:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is he also joining Al-Qaeda or Isis? I remember a story of a neo-Nazi who converted to Judaism and became a West Bank settler....
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Thu Jan 25th, 2018 at 08:12:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's the sort of thing people with limited Critical Thinking Skills* do.

* defined as: the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 05:16:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]

< wipes tears >

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sat Jan 27th, 2018 at 04:01:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
$20M buys a pulpit for all females and women, right?


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Fri Jan 26th, 2018 at 11:45:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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