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Thread: EXTRAS

  1. #91
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Question

    Will bump this for our guests ...

    Quote Originally posted by giovonni View Post

    Letter from the U.K. November 4, 2019 Issue



    How Brexit Will End




    "Until recently, it was possible to believe that there was a middle way, or to
    be in denial that a decisive moment would come. That’s no longer the case" ...


    Listen/read more/Here

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  3. #92
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    LOL

    Meanwhile at the World Series...



    “Baseball always renews my faith in America.”

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  5. #93
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Question

    Speaking of Baseball ...
    Batter Up !


    Watch our full interview with Vice President Mike Pence

    PBS NewsHour

    Vice President Mike Pence has been central to U.S. policy in Syria. After President Trump's controversial decision to withdraw American troops from the country and the ensuing Syrian incursion by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Pence was instrumental in securing a cease-fire agreement with Erdogan. Judy Woodruff sits down with Pence to discuss that effort and the impeachment inquiry.
    Oct 28, 2019

    18:47 minutes



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  7. #94
    Senior Member Fred Steeves's Avatar
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    A must see. "WeAreChange" goes to Epstein Island.
    The unexamined life is not worth living.

    Socrates

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  9. #95
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Thumbs Up

    Good to see Jeff (and friends) having some fun ...

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  11. #96
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Question

    Another controversial issue which tends to be ignored ...


    The Great Death Of Insects | DW Documentary (Ecology documentary)

    Insects are dying out and scientists and environmentalists are sounding the alarm. Our film team meets entomologists, farmers, scientists, chemical companies and politicians in a bid to lay bare the causes of insect mortality.

    Insects aren’t really likeable. They sting, bite, transmit diseases and frighten children. But, on the other hand, they are also fascinating: 480 million years ago, insects were the first animals to learn to fly, and they took over the Earth. Even now, they are fundamental to life on Earth, and are at the beginning of the food chain on which all human beings are ultimately dependent.

    But insect numbers worldwide are dropping, creating a rupture of the food chain. Environmentalists and scientists are now extremely worried. Landscape ecology professor Alexandra-Maria Klein from Freiburg, for example, has been researching the effects of human interventions in natural environments for decades and has launched an experiment in a fruit plantation on Lake Constance: What happens when insects disappear? An ominous silence is settling on places that were once humming and buzzing. Why are the insects dying? Author Christoph Würzburger takes a journey into the fascinating world of insects and meets entomologists, farmers, scientists, chemical companies and politicians in a search for the causes of insect mortality.
    Oct 17, 2019

    42:25 minutes



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  13. #97
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Returning Topic

    Autonomous not ...


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  15. #98
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    Re the Great Death of Insects:

    Wow. The apple tree experiment was fascinating. Hand pollination yielded small apples. Wind pollination yielded apples without seeds. The bee pollinated apples were far and away the best.

    Light pollution and the effects on bugs was not something I knew a great deal about.

    Very interesting, and kinda depressing.

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  17. #99
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Thumbs Up

    East Berlin Or Bust ...

    Udo Lindenberg: The Godfather of German Rock and the Fall of the Berlin Wall | DW Documentary

    "I was the official enemy of the East German state," says German rock legend Udo Lindenberg. Since the 1970s, he’d opposed the Berlin Wall through his work and actions. Arts.21 spoke to him about his commitment to East Germans and about his music.

    With the fall of the Berlin Wall, Lindenberg was finally able to go on tour in the former communist country, and one of those first concerts took him to Leipzig, where the now-legendary Monday Demonstrations that ultimately spelled the end of the East German regime took place. Udo Lindenberg became a household name in Germany, in part by making rock music sung in German popular, thanks to the success of his 1973 album, "Alles klar auf der Andrea Doria" – nothing short of a revolution at the time. He's written more than 600 songs so far, and released 36 studio albums, which have sold millions of copies. Udo Lindenberg and his band, The Panikorchester, create huge stage spectacles. Their concerts are among the most lavish and expensive shows in the music business, even internationally. Today, the “Godfather of German Rock” is more popular than ever. In an exclusive interview, we talk to him about his dedication to East Germans; the era of German division; the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989; the situation now, thirty years later, in a unified Germany; and, of course, about his music.
    Nov 6, 2019

    25:49 minutes



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  19. #100
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Returning Topic

    Pest with special anal tubes and lots more ...

    True Facts: Leafhoppers and Friends

    zefrank1


    Nov 5, 2019

    5:34 minutes



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  21. #101
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    And speaking of facts ...

    Stone Temple Pilots - Vasoline

    2:58 minutes


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  23. #102
    Senior Member Hungary
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    The story of the man behind the "Hide the Pain Harold" - meme.

    Originally an engineer, when his face became famous, he ran with it and is now an international celebrity. He even gave a Ted talk. Quite a wonderful story methinks.

    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeands...it-into-career

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  25. #103
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    The Mandela Effect gets its own movie treatment. Looks intriguing.


    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=viwAykESWng
    Last edited by Aragorn, 9th November 2019 at 17:55. Reason: fixed your video link ;)

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  27. #104
    Senior Member giovonni's Avatar
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    Thinking

    Playing hard ball ...

    U.S. Warns Iraq It Risks Losing Access to
    Key Bank Account if Troops Told to Leave


    "Loss of access to New York Fed account, where international oil sale revenue is kept, could creating cash crunch in Iraq’s financial system" ...



    Above:The Federal Reserve Bank of New York

    "The Trump administration warned Iraq this week that it risks losing access to a critical government bank account if Baghdad kicks out American forces following the U.S. airstrike that killed a top Iranian general, according to Iraqi officials.

    The State Department warned that the U.S. could shut down Iraq’s access to the country’s central bank account held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, a move that could jolt Iraq’s already shaky economy, the officials said.

    Iraq, like other countries, maintains government accounts at the New York Fed as an important part of managing the country’s finances, including revenue from oil sales. Loss of access to the accounts could restrict Iraq’s use of that revenue, creating a cash crunch in Iraq’s financial system and constricting a critical lubricant for the economy.

    The prospect of U.S. sanctions against Iraq arose after the Jan. 3 U.S. airstrike that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani at Baghdad International Airport. The Iraqi parliament voted Sunday to urge Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi to work toward the expulsion of the approximately 5,300 U.S. troops.

    In response to the nonbinding resolution, which was backed by the prime minister, President Trump threatened to impose sanctions against Iraq if the U.S. was forced to withdraw its troops.

    Mr. Abdul-Mahdi moved ahead with those plans this week, requesting the U.S. agree to talks to plan the safe withdrawal of American troops, according to an Iraqi description of a Thursday call with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

    Mr. Pompeo disagreed with Iraq’s version of his call with Mr. Abdul-Mahdi and said the U.S. would continue its Iraq-based campaign against the Islamic State extremist group. The State Department declined to comment on the U.S. warning to Iraq about its New York Fed account.

    The warning regarding the Iraqi central bank account was conveyed to Iraq’s prime minister in a call on Wednesday, according to an official in his office, that also touched on the overall military, political and financial partnership between the two countries.

    Spokesmen for the Iraqi prime minister, its central bank and its embassy in Washington didn’t respond to requests for comment. The U.S. State and Treasury Departments and the Federal Reserve Board declined to comment.

    The Federal Reserve Bank in New York, which can freeze accounts under U.S. sanctions law or if it has reasonable suspicion the funds could violate U.S. law, said it doesn’t comment on specific account holders.

    The potential economic and financial fallout is weighing on Iraqi officials as they try to address the presence of American troops without provoking a backlash. In recent days, Iraqi officials have stressed the need for friendly relations with the U.S., even as pro-Iranian militias and politicians exert pressure to expel American troops.

    “Whenever you have any amicable divorce, you still have the worry about the children, pets, furniture and plants, some of which are sentimental,” said a senior Iraqi politician.

    Mr. Abdul-Mahdi has said the departure of U.S. troops is the only way to avoid conflict in Iraq because the U.S. doesn’t trust the country’s security forces to protect its troops.

    But there are questions over his authority to evict them, given his status as a caretaker prime minister. Among other potential obstacles are Kurdish and most Sunni leaders, who boycotted the session at which parliamentarians voted on the troop expulsion.

    During the parliamentary debate, the speaker, a Sunni, urged Shiite lawmakers to be mindful of the potential backlash: “One of the steps the international community could take is to stop financial transactions with Iraq, and we would be unable to fulfill our commitments to our citizens at any moment,” Mohammed al-Halboosi said, based on a video of the proceedings viewed by The Wall Street Journal.

    The financial threat isn’t theoretical: The country’s financial system was squeezed in 2015 when the U.S. suspended access for several weeks to the central bank’s account at the New York Fed over concerns the cash was filtering through a loosely regulated market into Iranian banks and to the Islamic State extremist group."


    Note:Al Asad air base in Iraq, housing U.S. troops, was targeted Tuesday
    by missiles fired from Iran,


    “The U.S. Fed basically has a stranglehold on the entire [Iraqi] economy,” said Shwan Taha, chairman of Iraqi investment bank Rabee Securities.

    The prospect of sanctions has unsettled ordinary Iraqis, for whom memories of living under a United Nations embargo during the 1990s are still fresh. Pro-Iranian and other Shiite factions leading the charge to oust U.S. forces from Iraq have sought to reassure the public by telling them Iraq could pivot to China.

    An adviser to the prime minister, Abd al-Hassanein al-Hanein, said that while the threat of sanctions was a concern, he did not expect the U.S. to go through with it. “If the U.S. does that, it will lose Iraq forever,” he said.

    Besides the financial impact, many politicians, including some Shiites, worry that a U.S. withdrawal would allow Islamic State to re-emerge as a major threat. They also view the U.S. as a necessary counterweight to Iran, which has tightened its grip on the Iraqi government during Mr. Abdul-Mahdi’s premiership.

    The U.S. is concerned that an exodus of American forces could allow U.S. currency to be redirected to Iranian accounts and to other adversaries, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The Trump administration’s sanctions campaign against Iran has squeezed the flow of U.S. dollars to the government in Tehran over the past year. The American dollar, the most traded currency in the world, is used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to pay its foreign proxies fighting against the U.S. and its allies in the region, including in Iraq, U.S. officials say.

    Iranian-owned or controlled foreign exchange houses and banks in Iraq have been an important source of funding for Iran and its proxies active in the country, including those fighting against U.S. forces, U.S. officials say.

    The New York Fed provides banking and other financial services for around 250 central banks, governments and other foreign official institutions, such as the account owned by Bangladesh from which North Korean agents were able to steal $81 million in 2016, U.S. officials have said.

    When Iraq needs hard currency, its central bank can request a shipment of bills that it then distributes into the financial system through banks and currency exchange houses. While the country’s official currency is the dinar, U.S. dollars are commonly used.

    The New York Fed doesn’t publicly disclose how much money it currently holds for Iraq’s central bank. But according to the Central Bank of Iraq’s most recent financial statement, at the end of 2018, the Fed held nearly $3 billion in overnight deposits.

    Restricting Iraqi access to dollars could cause the dinar’s value to fall, as it did in 2015, which could again trigger a dash for dollars in Iraq as people, companies and banks try to secure hard cash. Such a devaluation could cause broader economic woes as it cuts spending power for workers, companies and the government."



    By Ian Talley in Washington and
    Isabel Coles in Beirut
    Jan. 11, 2020

    Source page WSJ

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  29. #105
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
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    Trump's using the Deep State Fed, eh?

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