Cover for No Agenda Show 1547: A Sally
April 16th, 2023 • 3h 0m

1547: A Sally


Every new episode of No Agenda is accompanied by a comprehensive list of shownotes curated by Adam while preparing for the show. Clips played by the hosts during the show can also be found here.

Leaker of Secrets
WaPo & Bellingcat the NYTimes "discovered" the leaker
This paragraph (from the WaPo article) is how the Q Anon bait worked and how so many, even people who should have been suspicious of the info, like Pieczenik, took the bait and repeated fictional Q stories: they felt like they had exclusive access to information no one else had.
This makes me believe someone gave Texeira the documents and that same someone or one of his colleagues was also on the same Discord channel and they were monitoring him.
"The member that the Post spoke with was under the age of 18, and had viewed OG as his “best friend.” The boy said “it felt like I was on top of Mount Everest,” and continued, “it felt like I was above everyone else to some degree and that… I knew stuff that they didn't.” Of the group, he said they were “like a tight knit family.” "
NBC quotes Belllingcat LOL, and they pretend they don't have access to Discord channels in order to push for some type of new powers to spy on everyone who works for the government, or worse.
U.S. intel agencies may change how they monitor social media, chatrooms after missing leaked U.S. documents for weeks
"Photographs of some of the documents first appeared on Discord app channels focused on the Minecraft computer game and followers of a minor YouTube celebrity, known as wow_mao, according to Bellingcat and other online experts. The photographed documents then eventually made their way to the image board 4Chan, then pro-Russian Telegram channels and Twitter. The New York Times first reported on the documents last week."
"Watching a public chatroom is fair game, but law enforcement agencies don’t have the legal authority to monitor a private online chatroom without probable cause, the former officials said."
Russia likely behind U.S. military document leak, U.S. officials say
April 7
"Russia or pro-Russian elements are likely behind the leak of several classified U.S. military documents posted on social media that offer a partial, month-old snapshot of the war in Ukraine, three U.S. officials told Reuters on Friday, while the Justice Department said separately it was probing the leak."
SOS Classified Docs Warning Memo
AB CEO Apology Note
Anheuser Busch BOTG
He said it’s a crazy place to work right now. He knows the person in charge of the influencer campaigns and he’s pretty sure that person is going to be fired. He also said that Alissa Heinerscheid is probably gonna be fired, but she wasn’t the one who greenlit the Dylan Mulvaney thing. That was done through the influencers campaign person.
Ukraine vs Russia
The Ukraine government, headed by Volodymyr Zelensky, has been using American taxpayers’ funds to pay dearly for the vitally needed diesel fuel that is keeping the Ukrainian army on the move in its war with Russia. It is unknown how much the Zelensky government is paying per gallon for the fuel, but the Pentagon was paying as much as $400 per gallon to transport gasoline from a port in Pakistan, via truck or parachute, into Afghanistan during the decades-long American war there.
What also is unknown is that Zelensky has been buying the fuel from Russia, the country with which it, and Washington, are at war, and the Ukrainian president and many in his entourage have been skimming untold millions from the American dollars earmarked for diesel fuel payments. One estimate by analysts from the Central Intelligence Agency put the embezzled funds at $400 million last year, at least; another expert compared the level of corruption in Kiev as approaching that of the Afghan war, “although there will be no professional audit reports emerging from the Ukraine.”
Big Tech Tik Tok
Big Tech AI
Climate Change
Great Reset
Prime Time Takedown
BOTG Trump's fingers were so dry during his arraignment he needed lotion before he could be fingerprinted, according to a new report from Yahoo News
Just a comment on this from a boots on the ground or fingers on the fingerprint glass perspective:
I am now 72 years old. I still do dudes named Ben contract work which sometimes requires fresh background checks. (Department of redundant redundancies I have a background check through the platform I mostly get work through but several 'employers' require their own company background check and or drug test). Occasionally that requires finger prints also. I have also worked for the US Census Bureau in 2009, 10, 19 and 20. Since at least. 2019 (at 68 years old) I have had to use lotion to moisturize my fingers to get printed because they have dried out with age. Not at all uncommon.
Why this becomes NEWS with Trump is strange.
Vape Wars
After 18 years, Europe's largest nuclear reactor starts regular output | Reuters
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 17:21
[1/2] A general view of the Olkiluoto-3 nuclear reactor in Eurajoki, Finland August 17, 2017. REUTERS/Lefteris Karagiannopoulos
Construction of Finland's OL3 reactor began in 2005Work was originally schedule for completion in 2009Completion boosts Finland's energy securityReactor is expected to produce for 60 years or moreHELSINKI, April 15 (Reuters) - Finland's much-delayed Olkiluoto 3 (OL3) nuclear reactor, Europe's largest, began regular output early on Sunday, its operator said, boosting energy security in a region to which Russia has cut gas and power supplies.
Nuclear power remains controversial in Europe, primarily due to safety concerns, and news of OL3's start-up comes as Germany on Saturday switches off its last three remaining reactors, while Sweden, France, Britain and others plan new developments.
OL3's operator Teollisuuden Voima (TVO), which is owned by Finnish utility Fortum (FORTUM.HE) and a consortium of energy and industrial companies, has said the unit is expected to meet around 14% of Finland's electricity demand, reducing the need for imports from Sweden and Norway.
The new reactor is expected to produce for at least 60 years, TVO said in a statement on Sunday after completing the transition from testing to regular output.
"The production of Olkiluoto 3 stabilises the price of electricity and plays an important role in the Finnish green transition," TVO Chief Executive Jarmo Tanhua said in the statement.
Construction of the 1.6 gigawatt (GW) reactor, Finland's first new nuclear plant in more than four decades and Europe's first in 16 years, began in 2005. The plant was originally due to open four years later, but was plagued by technical issues.
OL3 first supplied test production to Finland's national power grid in March last year and was expected at the time to begin regular output four months later, but instead suffered a string of breakdowns and outages that took months to fix.
Russia's power exports to Finland ended last May when Russian utility Inter RAO said it had not been paid for the energy it sold, a consequence of the widening gulf between Moscow and Europe over the war in Ukraine.
Russian state export monopoly Gazprom shortly after ended shipments of natural gas to the Nordic nation.
Reporting by Essi Lehto; Editing by Terje Solsvik and Jan Harvey
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Ben McKenzie - Wikipedia
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 16:06
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
American actor (born 1978)
Benjamin McKenzie Schenkkan (born September 12, 1978) is an American actor, author and commentator. He is best known for his starring television roles as Ryan Atwood on the teen drama The O.C. (2003''2007), Ben Sherman on the crime drama Southland (2009''2013), and James Gordon on the crime drama Gotham (2014''2019). McKenzie made his film debut in the Academy Award-nominated film Junebug (2005), before appearing in films including 88 Minutes (2007), Goodbye World (2013), Some Kind of Beautiful (2014), and Line of Duty (2019). In 2020, he made his Broadway debut in the Bess Wohl play Grand Horizons.
Outside of acting, McKenzie is noted for his critical commentary on the cryptocurrency bubble and fraud with journalist Jacob Silverman. Their forthcoming book on the subject, Easy Money, will be published in 2023.
Early life and education [ edit ] Benjamin McKenzie Schenkkan was born in Austin, Texas.[1] He is of Dutch-Jewish, Scottish, and English descent. He is one of three sons born to Frances Schenkkan, a poet, and Pete Schenkkan, an attorney.[2][3] He has two younger brothers, both of whom are former actors.[3][4] He is the brother-in-law of photojournalist Scout Tufankjian.
His grandfather, Robert F. Schenkkan was a professor at the University of Texas at Austin and worked on passing the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967.[5][6] Notably, he is a nephew of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Robert Schenkkan;[5] McKenzie appeared in his 2019 work The Investigation. His middle name, McKenzie, is his paternal grandmother's maiden name; he uses it as part of his stage name to avoid confusion with actor Ben Shenkman.[7]
For middle school, he attended St. Andrew's Episcopal School, where he was friends and flag football teammates with future Super Bowl MVP Drew Brees.[8] He attended Stephen F. Austin High School, playing wide receiver and defensive back for the school's football team. From 1997 to 2001 he attended the University of Virginia, his father and paternal grandfather's alma mater, where he majored in foreign affairs and economics.[9]
Acting career [ edit ] 2001''2007: Early career and The O.C. [ edit ] After graduating from college in 2001, McKenzie moved to New York City where he worked in part-time jobs and performed in some off-off-Broadway productions.[10][11] During this period, he also participated in summer stock theater and the Williamstown Theatre Festival.[11]
At age twenty-three[12] he moved to Los Angeles where he waited tables and slept on the floor of his friend Ernie Sabella's apartment.[13][10] He was soon cast as Ryan Atwood in The O.C.[10] On August 5, 2003, Fox premiered the television series, about affluent teenagers with stormy personal lives in Orange County, California. The show became an overnight success and made McKenzie famous. His performance in The O.C. earned him "Choice Breakout TV Star '' Male" and "Choice TV Chemistry" nominations in the Teen Choice Awards as well as "Choice TV Actor '' Drama/Action Adventure" and "Choice TV Actor '' Drama" wins. McKenzie reportedly earned between about $15,000 and $25,000 per episode throughout the show's run.
The O.C. was the first time McKenzie played what The New York Times later described as the "quiet, guarded leading man" role he would repeatedly portray.[10] As a result of the show's success, McKenzie appeared in magazines including People, In Touch Weekly and Us Weekly. He was ranked No. 5 in Independent Online's "100 Sexiest Men Alive" and twice appeared on Teen People magazine's annual list of "25 Sexiest Stars under 25". McKenzie was also voted one of InStyle's "10 Hottest Bachelors of Summer" in July 2005. The O.C. dropped in ratings dramatically during its third and fourth seasons, and ended in early 2007.[14]
While appearing in The O.C., McKenzie made his feature film debut in the Academy Award-nominated film Junebug alongside Amy Adams and Embeth Davidtz. The film was nominated for "Best International Film" and "Outstanding Ensemble Acting" in the Amanda Awards and won the Sarasota Film Festival award for "Outstanding Ensemble Acting". It also received high praise at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.[15] According to Production Weekly, McKenzie was set to star in the thriller Snakes on a Plane, formerly known as Pacific Air 121, but later dropped out to film 88 Minutes, which starred Al Pacino.[16]
2007''2019: Southland and Gotham [ edit ] In 2008, McKenzie earned critical acclaim for his solo performance in the "live on stage, on film" version of Dalton Trumbo's 1939 novel Johnny Got His Gun, his first starring role in a film. He stars as Joe Bonham, a role previously played by James Cagney, Jeff Daniels, and Timothy Bottoms.[17] The movie premiered at the Paramount Theater in Austin, McKenzie's hometown, while he was filming the pilot for Southland. In 2009, he appeared in the short film The Eight Percent. The movie won the Delta Air Lines Fly-in Movie Contest and entered as an official selection on the Tribeca Film Festival's Short film category.
McKenzie starred as rookie police officer Ben Sherman on the NBC drama Southland, which premiered on April 9, 2009. The show was canceled while in production on its second season. TNT bought the rights for the show and showed the seven episodes that had been produced. The show was subsequently renewed and ran for five seasons before being canceled in 2013. From September to October 2010, he starred in an off-Broadway transfer of The Glass Menagerie at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.[18]
Following the end of Southland, McKenzie was cast in the CBS drama television pilot The Advocates, opposite Mandy Moore.[19] The show was not produced. In late 2013, he was cast in the drama film The Swimmer, a Norwegian production that was not produced.[20] In October 2013, he signed an exclusive talent deal with Warner Bros. Television Studios, the home of The O.C. and Southland.[21] A few months later, in February 2014, it was announced that McKenzie was cast in the pilot of Gotham.[22]
McKenzie returned to Fox in the Batman prequel television show Gotham, which premiered on September 22, 2014. In the series, he portrayed James Gordon as a young detective new to Gotham City.[23][10] After five seasons and 100 episodes, the show concluded in April 2019. In the same series, he made his directorial debut with the season 3 episode "These Delicate and Dark Obsessions".[24] McKenzie went on to direct "One of My Three Soups" and write "The Demon's Head" from the fourth season.
In 2017, he appeared in the first season of The Accidental Wolf, a miniseries series created by Arian Moayed and the theater production company Waterwell.[25] He shot Line of Duty, a real-time action thriller, in Birmingham, Alabama in early summer 2018; it was released in 2019.
2019''present: New projects and theater [ edit ] Following the conclusion of Gotham in 2019, McKenzie indicated the end of one chapter in his career, turning to new efforts including writing and directing.[26]
On June 24, 2019, McKenzie, along with an ensemble cast, presented The Investigation: A Search for the Truth in Ten Acts, a dramatic reading of Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III's Report on the Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election. McKenzie portrayed President Donald Trump's former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, as well as Donald Trump, Jr.[27]
McKenzie made his Broadway debut on January 23, 2020, in the Second Stage production of Grand Horizons at the Hayes Theater.[28] McKenzie starred as Ben, one of two sons struggling with their elderly parents' divorce. A limited-run production, the play began previews on December 23, 2019[29] and closed on March 1, 2020. In February 2022, it was announced that McKenzie would star in and produce Bloat, an internationally-produced J-horror film.[30] In February 2023, it was announced that he would star in the ABC medical drama pilot The Hurt Unit which centers on a hospital urgent response team.[31]
Criticism of cryptocurrency [ edit ] I'm just a former teen idol standing here (alone?) asking people to consider downside risk and the possibility of fraud. I hope I'm wrong, but pretty sure we'll find out soon enough. Good luck folks - don't take financial advice from celebs, including me.
February 4, 2022[32]
Since 2021, McKenzie has been an outspoken critic of cryptocurrency.[33][34][35][36] He is noted as one of the few celebrity skeptics of the technology.[37][38][39] As such, he has been particularly critical of the proliferation of celebrity endorsements of unstable cryptocurrencies, their speculation, and NFTs.[40][41][42]
With journalist Jacob Silverman, he has written a number of critical articles on crypto for publications including Slate, The New Republic, The Washington Post, and The Intercept.[43][44][45][46][47] Together, they are writing the book Easy Money, to be released by Abrams Press in July 2023.[48][49] They had a featured session on the topic at the 2022 SXSW Festival and McKenzie at WSJ Tech Live 2022[50] and the 2022 Web Summit.[51] As a pundit, McKenzie has also appeared on CNN Business, CNBC, and CBS News to discuss the topic.[41][52][53][54][55] He has been a guest on podcasts like What Next: TBD, Deconstructed, and Chapo Trap House, and radio programs Marketplace Tech and Morning Edition.[56][57][58][59][60]
McKenzie testified at the United States Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs hearing "Crypto Crash: Why the FTX Bubble Burst and the Harm to Consumers'' in December 2022.[61]
McKenzie attributes his initial interest in the subject to his undergraduate degree in economics and friends' interest in cryptocurrency, as well as coursework on the blockchain from MIT professor and SEC chairman Gary Gensler and Capital in the Twenty-First Century by economist Thomas Piketty.[33][34][35]
McKenzie's forthcoming debut book Easy Money: Cryptocurrency, Casino Capitalism, and the Golden Age of Fraud with Jacob Silverman will be released on July 18, 2023. [62]
Personal life [ edit ] In September 2015, actress Morena Baccarin said in a legal declaration involving her divorce from Austin Chick that she planned to marry her Gotham co-star, McKenzie, adding that she was pregnant with their child.[63][64] Their daughter was born on March 2, 2016.[65] On 18 March 2016, Baccarin and Chick's divorce became official.[66] Baccarin and McKenzie announced their engagement in November 2016. They were married on June 2, 2017 (Baccarin's 38th birthday) in Brooklyn, New York.[67] They announced the birth of their son in March 2021.[68] With Baccarin, McKenzie has one step-son.[65]
Filmography [ edit ] Film [ edit ] Television [ edit ] YearTitleRoleNotes2002 The District Tim RuskinEpisode: "Faith" (credited as Benjamin McKenzie)2003JAGPetty Officer SpencerEpisode: "Empty Quiver" (credited as Benjamin McKenzie)2003''2007The O.C.Ryan Atwood92 episodes2004MADtvRyan Atwood1 episode2004''2005Punk'dHimself2 episodes2009''2013SouthlandBen Sherman43 episodes2011Scooby-Doo! Mystery IncorporatedOdnarb (voice)Episode: "The Wild Brood"2013Men at WorkBryanEpisode: "Tyler the Pioneer"2013The AdvocatesHenry BirdPilot2014''2019GothamJames Gordon100 episodes; director (3 episodes), writer (2 episodes)2017The Accidental WolfWebseriesTBAThe Hurt UnitDannyABC PilotAudio [ edit ] YearTitleRoleNotes2020PhreaksAudio book[70]Theater [ edit ] Bibliography [ edit ] McKenzie, Ben; Silverman, Jacob (2023). Easy Money: Cryptocurrency, Casino Capitalism, and the Golden Age of Fraud. Abrams Press. ISBN 978-1-4197-6639-8. OCLC 1338834619. Awards and nominations [ edit ] References [ edit ] ^ "Benjamin McKenzie". Archived from the original on September 10, 2015 . Retrieved September 24, 2015 . ^ "Pieter Meade Schenkkan (Attorney)". PlainSite. Archived from the original on September 27, 2015 . Retrieved September 26, 2015 . ^ a b "Barnes: Pete Schenkkan is a poet of the law". Austin American-Statesman. Austin, Texas. January 28, 2013. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. His wife, Frances Victory Schenkkan, is a prize-winning poet. One son, Ben McKenzie, who opted to use his middle name, sizzles on the TV cop drama Southland after melting hearts on The O.C. His other sons, both former actors, are involved in nonprofits and the law. ^ "Nate Schenkkan | WP Theater". Women's Project Theater . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ a b "Robert Schenkkan Obituary - Austin, TX". Legacy. Austin American-Statesman . Retrieved June 19, 2020 . ^ Powers, William; Greninger, Sue Alexander. "In Memoriam: Robert F. Schenkkan". The University of Texas at Austin . Retrieved September 26, 2015 . ^ "Life '-- High Profile". The Cavalier Daily. University of Virginia. January 21, 2004. ^ "A brush with greatness - why I want Drew Brees to win tonight" Archived July 16, 2011, at the Wayback Machine,; retrieved March 8, 2010. ^ "Before Batman". U.Va. Magazine. University of Virginia Alumni Association. Winter 2014. ^ a b c d e Hale, Mike (November 23, 2014). "Sometimes, Old-Fashioned Pays Off". The New York Times. pp. AR19 . Retrieved January 18, 2015 . ^ a b McHenry, Jackson (January 23, 2020). "With Grand Horizons, Ben McKenzie Is Getting Back Into Theater". Vulture . Retrieved January 23, 2020 . ^ Ben McKenzie on Final Season of Gotham, archived from the original on November 18, 2021 , retrieved January 23, 2020 ^ Behind the Scenes: Casting The O.C. Ben McKenzie Peter Gallagher Adam Brody, Rachel Bilson, archived from the original on November 18, 2021 , retrieved January 23, 2020 ^ " 'The O.C.' Cancelled Due to Poor Ratings". FoxNews. January 4, 2007. Archived from the original on February 2, 2015 . Retrieved December 30, 2014 . ^ "Benjamin McKenzie". Us Weekly. Archived from the original on March 12, 2008. ^ "Benjamin McKenzie set to star in Pacific Air 121". MovieWeb. Archived from the original on November 12, 2007 . Retrieved February 4, 2008 . ^ "Dalton Trumbo's Johnny Got His Gun" (PDF) . Variety. October 13, 2008 . Retrieved December 30, 2014 . ^ David Ng (August 12, 2010). "Ben McKenzie of 'Southland' and 'The O.C.' to star in 'Glass Menagerie' at Mark Taper Forum". LA Times Blogs - Culture Monster . Retrieved January 23, 2020 . ^ Andreeva, Nellie (March 14, 2013). "Mandy Moore To Star In CBS Drama Pilot 'The Advocates' ". Deadline . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Murray, Rebecca (September 9, 2013). "Ben McKenzie Joins The Swimmer Cast". ShowbizJunkies . Retrieved June 27, 2022 . ^ Andreeva, Nellie (October 17, 2013). "Ben McKenzie Inks Warner Bros TV Deal". Deadline . Retrieved June 27, 2022 . ^ Goldberg, Lesley (February 8, 2014). "Fox's Batman Prequel 'Gotham' Taps 'Southland's' Ben McKenzie as Gordon". The Hollywood Reporter . Retrieved June 27, 2022 . ^ Andreeva, Nellie (February 8, 2014). "Ben McKenzie to Star As Detective James Gordon in Fox's Batman Series 'Gotham' ". Deadline Hollywood . Retrieved February 8, 2014 . ^ "(GTH-316) "Heroes Rise: These Delicate and Dark Obsessions" ". The Futon Critic . Retrieved April 13, 2017 . ^ "The Accidental Wolf - Cast | TVmaze". . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Boucher, Geoff (April 26, 2019). "Beyond 'Gotham': Ben McKenzie Goes Off Script To Focus On New Direction As Fox Series Ends". Deadline . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ "Law Works: The Investigation". June 24, 2019. Archived from the original on January 21, 2020 . Retrieved June 24, 2019 . ^ "Second Stage Theater". Archived from the original on February 29, 2020 . Retrieved January 23, 2020 . ^ "Grand Horizons". Internet Broadway Database. January 23, 2020 . Retrieved January 23, 2020 . ^ Vourlias, Christopher (February 11, 2022). "Ben McKenzie, Bojana Novakovic Board J-Horror Pic 'Bloat' (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Andreeva, Nellie (February 14, 2023). "Ben McKenzie To Headline ABC Pilot 'The Hurt Unit' ". Deadline . Retrieved February 22, 2023 . ^ Ben McKenzie [@ben_mckenzie] (February 4, 2022). "I'm just a former teen idol standing here (alone?) asking people to consider downside risk and the possibility of fraud. I hope I'm wrong, but pretty sure we'll find out soon enough. Good luck folks - don't take financial advice from celebs, including me" (Tweet) '' via Twitter. ^ a b Yaffe-Bellany, David (March 31, 2022). "Ben McKenzie Would Like a Word With the Crypto Bros". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved April 1, 2022 . ^ a b Read, Bridget (March 1, 2022). "Ben McKenzie, Actor Turned Crypto Naysayer". The Cut . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ a b McKenzie, Ben; Silverman, Jacob (October 7, 2021). "Celebrity Crypto Shilling Is a Moral Disaster". Slate Magazine . Retrieved October 7, 2021 . ^ Canales, Katie. "6 of crypto's loudest opponents that you should know about, from Dogecoin's co-creator to a star of 'The OC' ". Business Insider . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Sharma, Ruchira (March 16, 2022). "What's a 'Nocoiner'? Inside the World of Crypto Sceptics". Vice . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ McCullar 3, Emily (March 16, 2022). "Can 'O.C.' Star Ben McKenzie Get Me to Care About Crypto? An Experiment". Texas Monthly . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Harris, Malcolm (November 11, 2022). "The Rise of Influencer Capital". Intelligencer . Retrieved November 17, 2022 . ...spawning the era's first celebrity anti-promoter, actor Ben McKenzie, who began speaking out against the crypto space in general and endorsements from his fellow celebrities in particular ^ Wilson, Josh. "NFTs Are Attracting A Lot Of Star Power From Hollywood; Should We Be Worried?". Forbes . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ a b TV star has new role: Crypto critic (video). CNN Business. November 23, 2021. ^ Beer, Jeff (November 13, 2022). "The FTX collapse is a harsh lesson in hype advertising". Fast Company . Retrieved November 17, 2022 . ...the complexities of using advertising methods typically familiar in consumer packaged goods or entertainment for something as new and confusing as crypto [...] This is something that Ben McKenzie (yep, Ryan from The O.C.) also warned of early on. ^ "Ben McKenzie". Slate Magazine . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ "Author: Ben McKenzie". The New Republic . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ McKenzie, Ben; Silverman, Jacob (April 1, 2022). "Perspective | Why users are pushing back against the world's largest crypto exchange". Washington Post . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ McKenzie, Ben; Silverman, Jacob (May 27, 2022). "Spring cleaning 2022: Cryptocurrency". The Washington Post. ^ Silverman, Jacob; McKenzie, Ben (July 22, 2022). "El Salvador's Embrace of Bitcoin Didn't Bring Prosperity '-- It Rode in With Waves of Repression". The Intercept . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Lang, Brent (February 24, 2022). " 'The O.C.' Star Ben McKenzie, Journalist Jacob Silverman Sell 'Easy Money,' Book About Cryptocurrency, to Abrams Press (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Easy Money Cryptocurrency, Casino Capitalism, and the Golden Age of Fraud. Abrams Press. 2023. ISBN 978-1-4197-6639-8. ^ "Hollywood's Ben McKenzie Warns: Don't Buy Into Crypto Hype". WSJ . Retrieved November 29, 2022 . ^ "Featured Session: Trust Me I'm Famous: Ben McKenzie Questions Crypto". SXSW 2022 Schedule . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ Video: 'OC' actor Ben McKenzie on Kim Kardashian's SEC fine on CNN Nightcap, CNN Business, October 6, 2022 , retrieved November 12, 2022 ^ Crypto is ripe for manipulation and fraud without proper regulation: Actor Ben McKenzie (video). CNBC Television. December 29, 2021. ^ I'm somewhat skeptical of cryptocurrency: Actor and crypto critic Ben McKenzie (video). CNBC Television. April 8, 2022. ^ Market fraud and skepticism fuel crash of cryptocurrency (video). CBS News. June 15, 2022. ^ Slate Daily Feed. "What Next TBD: Why Does Matt Damon Want Me to Buy Crypto?". Listen Notes . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Deconstructed. "Is Crypto a Big Scam? - Deconstructed (podcast)". Listen Notes . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Chapo Trap House. "626 - Simian Slurp feat. Ben McKenzie (5/9/22) '' Chapo Trap House '' Podcast". Podtail . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Marketplace Tech. "El Salvador citizens mostly avoid bitcoin, despite government adoption". Listen Notes . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ Martinez, A (December 14, 2022). "Lawmakers on Capitol Hill hold hearings into the failed cryptocurrency giant FTX". . Retrieved December 14, 2022 . ^ "Crypto Crash: Why the FTX Bubble Burst and the Harm to Consumers | United States Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs". . Retrieved December 9, 2022 . ^ "EASY MONEY CRYPTOCURRENCY, CASINO CAPITALISM, AND THE GOLDEN AGE OF FRAUD". Abrams Books . Retrieved April 14, 2023 . ^ Gomez, Patrick (September 21, 2015). "Gotham's Morena Baccarin and Benjamin McKenzie Dating". People . Retrieved October 2, 2019 . ^ Lovece, Frank (September 28, 2015). "Morena Baccarin, Ben McKenzie plan to marry, her divorce docs say". Newsday . Retrieved September 28, 2015 . ^ a b Mandell, Andrea (March 11, 2016). "Exclusive: Morena Baccarin, Ben McKenzie welcome baby girl". USA Today. Archived from the original on May 12, 2016 . Retrieved May 5, 2016 . ^ "Morena Baccarin Officially Divorced". E! News. March 18, 2016 . Retrieved March 20, 2016 . ^ Jordan, Julie; Stone, Natalie (June 7, 2017). "Morena Baccarin and Ben McKenzie Are Married!". People . Retrieved June 19, 2020 . ^ Campione, Katie (March 9, 2021). "Morena Baccarin and Husband Ben McKenzie Welcome Son Arthur: '2021 Is Looking Up' ". People . Retrieved March 10, 2021 . ^ Miska, Brad (October 3, 2022). " 'Bloat' '' Screenlife J-Horror Wraps Production in Japan! [Image]". Bloody Disgusting! . Retrieved November 12, 2022 . ^ "Audiobooks narrated by Ben McKenzie |". . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ "Ben Schenkkan". Williamstown Theatre Festival . Retrieved June 19, 2022 . ^ "People's Choice Awards 2015 hosts, nominees announced". CBS News. November 4, 2014 . Retrieved January 8, 2015 . ^ "NOMINEES & WINNERS". People's Choice Awards . Retrieved January 8, 2015 . ^ Moreau, Jordan (June 19, 2019). " 'Avengers: Endgame,' 'Riverdale,' 'Aladdin' Top 2019 Teen Choice Award Nominations". Variety . Retrieved July 19, 2019 . External links [ edit ] Ben McKenzie at IMDbBen McKenzie at IBDbBen McKenzie at About the ArtistBen McKenzie at TV GuideBen McKenzie on Twitter
The Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) Launches an International Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC)
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 14:01
, /PRNewswire/ -- Today, at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Spring Meetings 2023, the Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) announced their official launch of an international central bank digital currency (CBDC) that strengthens the monetary sovereignty of participating central banks and complies with the recent crypto assets policy recommendations proposed by the IMF.
International Monetary Fund Spring Meetings 2023Universal Monetary Unit (UMU), symbolized as ANSI Character, ', is legally a money commodity, can transact in any legal tender settlement currency, and functions like a CBDC to enforce banking regulations and to protect the financial integrity of the international banking system.
Banks can attach SWIFT Codes and bank accounts to a UMU digital currency wallet and transaction SWIFT-like cross-border payments over digital currency rails completely bypassing the correspondent banking system at best-priced wholesale FX rates and with instantaneous real-time settlement.
In an IMF interview with Tobias Adrian , Financial Counsellor at the International Monetary Fund, he states "Cross-border payments can be slow, expensive, and risky. In today's world of payments, counterparties in different jurisdictions rely on costly trusted relationships to offset the lack of a common settlement asset together with common rules and governance. But imagine if a multilateral platform existed that could improve cross-border payments'--at the same time transforming foreign exchange transactions, risk sharing, and more generally, financial contracting."
According to Darrell Hubbard , the Executive Director of the DCMA, and the chief architect of UMU, "This vision expressed by the IMF is the exact solution the DCMA is delivering to central banks worldwide."
Adopting a global localization public monetary system architecture, UMU can be configured to operate according to the central banking regulations of each participating jurisdiction.
George Walker , a Partner at Practus, LLP, specializing in international law, facilitated meetings between the DMCA and the IMF, states "Although the IMF has not officially endorsed Universal Monetary Unit, in reviewing the DCMA's Whitepaper and in weekly team discussions, the IMF has yet to state any objections to UMU's FX premium rates and its monetary sovereignty approach."
According to Darrell, "UMU is not attempting to disrupt the international monetary system. If fact, it strengthens it by helping the IMF achieve its stated mandate to provide economic and financial stability to its member states. UMU is a game-changer in how cross-border payments are transacted and mitigates against seasonal and systemic local currency depreciation."
Universal Monetary Unit Model Law legislation has been drafted in collaboration with several sovereign states. In this proposed legislation, UMU should not be enacted as legal tender for negotiating domestic prices or international trade agreements. Instead, the legislation proposes UMU to be enacted as a complementary money commodity for the store of value, mitigating against potential seasonal and systemic local currency depreciation, and tendered as a payment currency at the time of settlement.
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The DCMA introduces Universal Monetary Unit as Crypto 2.0 because it innovates a new wave of cryptographic technologies for realizing a digital currency public monetary system with a widespread adoption framework encompassing use cases for all constituencies in a global economy.
About the Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) ''
The DCMA is a world leader in the advocacy of digital currency and monetary policy innovations for governments and central banks. Membership within the DCMA consists of sovereign states, central banks, commercial and retail banks, and other financial institutions.
About Universal Monetary Unit (UMU) '' Universal Monetary Unit (UMU), also known as Unicoin, is an innovation in store of value cryptography powered by artificial intelligence (AI). It adopts a central banking monetary policy framework to ensure it has continuous purchasing demand, minimal price volatility, and annual asset pricing targets.A copy of the UMU Whitepaper is available on its website.
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Study Shows 4.2 Percent of Pfizer COVID Vaccine Batches Made up Most Adverse Events, Raising Serious Concerns
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 13:27
In Denmark, 4.2 percent of Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine batches accounted for 71 percent of suspected adverse events (SAEs), according to Danish researchers in a recent study published in the European Journal of Clinical Investigation on March 30.
The study has raised serious concerns about the inconsistencies in the quality of different vaccine batches and the implications for vaccine recipients.
The StudyDanish researchers studied the rates of SAEs between different batches of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, BNT162b2, which was administered in Denmark from December 27, 2020''January 11, 2022.
There were approximately 7.8 million doses administered to 3.7 million people from 52 different Pfizer vaccine batches during that time period.
SAEs of 43,496 were reported by 13,635 individuals, which was an average of 3.19 events per person.
''Unexpectedly, rates of SAEs per 1000 doses varied considerably between vaccine batches,'' the researchers wrote in the publication.
They further noted these results were unexpected, since in the European Union vaccine vials and individual batch and dose uniformity are monitored ''with stringent quality control'' under the Official Control Authority Batch Release guidelines.
(Schmeling, M, Manniche, V, Hansen, PR. Batch-dependent safety of the BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine. Eur J Clin Invest. 2023; 00:e13998. doi:10.1111/eci.13998)The blue trend line in the chart above shows that of the 71 percent of SAEs reported from only 4.2 percent of all vaccine doses, 27 percent were considered serious, and 47 percent resulted in death.
Serious SAEs mean hospitalization, life-threatening illness, or permanent disability.
''These are critically important results,'' said Dr. Peter McCullough on Substack. McCullough is a renowned internist, cardiologist, and epidemiologist, as well as a contributor to The Epoch Times.
''They imply the COVID-19 vaccine debacle is indeed a product problem and not due to patient susceptibility in most circumstances,'' McCullough said.
Jessica Rose, a Canadian molecular biologist who has focused on analyzing the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) data, applauded the authors for providing this evidence, yet pointed out the reporting could have been more accurate.
Since the doses deemed to be administered might not have been injected into people, Rose suggested the next important step is to examine the contents of the vials directly.
Max Schmeling, one of the research authors replied to Rose saying the data they obtained from the Danish Serum Institute ''comes closest to being the real number of administered doses.'' He further explained that this is because the shipped doses excluded any vials the Serum Institute may have already had in stock. However, after further investigation, Schmeling told The Epoch Times that a recent query of the Serum Institute verified that the number of shipped vaccine doses were essentially the same as the number of administered vaccine doses.
Questionable Vaccine QualityOne study found that vaccine vials are not of equal quality across batches. Researchers suggested the individual vaccine vial should be considered when investigating serious adverse reactions such as anaphylaxis since it might be caused by a defective vial.
Researcher Craig Paardekooper, on his website believes that batches are in fact different, and provides evidence showing that the number and severity of adverse events vary across different batch numbers.
This problem was not found only in Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccines.
In 2021, after 39 vials were found to contain foreign materials, three lots of the Moderna vaccine totaling more than 1.6 million doses were recalled in Japan.
In April 2022, Moderna recalled 764,900 doses of its COVID-19 vaccine in Europe after contaminants were discovered in a vial.
Many factors contribute to variations in vaccine quality, including vaccine manufacturing, storage, transportation, and clinical handling.
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration has issued guidance for COVID-19 vaccine development and licensing. But according to McCullough, there are no inspections of the final filled and finished vials required under Emergency Use Authorization.
''The lack of inspections has led to a safety disaster. Some unfortunate patients are getting too much mRNA, contaminants, or both, and thus are exposed to damaging and in some cases, lethal injections,'' said McCullough.
Study LimitationsThe authors of the Danish study acknowledged there are certain limitations to their study.
The SAE reporting system managed by the Danish Medical Agency is a passive surveillance system similar to VAERS in the United States, so it may be under-reporting, over-reporting, or incomplete.
Additionally, the SAE case history of prior COVID-19 was unknown. Specific SAE types, demographics of SAE cases, and other factors were not examined.
''More studies are warranted to explore this preliminary observation and its consequences,'' wrote the authors in the Danish report.
The Epoch Times has contacted Pfizer for comment.
Update: This article has been update with additional information provided by Max Schmeling on April 14.
Marina Zhang contributed to this report.
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Sun, 16 Apr 2023 13:22
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Leaker of US classified docs claims government knew about white supremacist Buffalo shooter in advance but let it happen to get more funding | The Post Millennial |
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 13:00
The leaker of US classified documents told the members of their invitation-only discord server that the government hides ''horrible truths'' from the public. One such example was a claim that federal agencies allowed the 2022 shooting at a Buffalo supermarket to happen so that they could use the event to argue for more funding. A report from the Washington Post said that this claim was ''baseless.'' Charlie Kirk pointed out that ''the context here is interesting given that much of what was leaked to this Discord chat turned out to be true.'' An investigation at the time revealed many "missed red flags."
One of the members of the Discord server noted in to the Washington Post that he was impressed by the man's ability to forecast major events before they became headlines. The member said that the man they called ''OG'' saw the intelligence community as a force that wanted to keep its citizens in the dark. The member said ''he thought that the government is overreaching in several aspects,'' but there wasn't ''some heavy Snowden-like conspiracy here.''
The poster posted several classified documents a week to the server where he was seen as the leader. The server was a small group of mostly young men and boys with a love for guns, military gear, and god. The member that the Post spoke with was under the age of 18, and had viewed OG as his ''best friend.''
The boy said ''it felt like I was on top of Mount Everest,'' and continued, ''it felt like I was above everyone else to some degree and that'... I knew stuff that they didn't.'' Of the group, he said they were ''like a tight knit family.''
At one point in 2022, OG stopped writing out transcripts of the classified material, to posting pictures he took. Some of the pictures leaked were related to the war in Ukraine, dealing with operations plans, and troop levels.
Though some of the troop-level information had been doctored to reflect an increased casualty rate for the Ukraine Army, and a decreased rate for the Russian Army, however, the member said that OG was not for Russia or Ukraine.
The young member said that ''most people in the server were smart enough to kind of realize that'... they shouldn't be posted anywhere else.'' When the documents were made public, OG signed off and told the members ''he didn't want to be associated with any of us.''
After over 100 of the documents surfaced across various social media sites, one senior intelligence official called the leak ''a nightmare'' for the United States and the countries they share intelligence with. On Thursday afternoon, FBI agents arrested 21-year-old Jack Texeira, a member of the Massachusetts Air National Guard's intelligence wing, in connection to the leak.
GOP Rep. Dan Crenshaw spent almost $20K of campaign funds on 'promotional' eye patches - Raw Story - Celebrating 19 Years of Independent Journalism
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 12:52
Dan Crenshaw. Facebook campaign page
Buried deep in Rep. Dan Crenshaw's new Federal Election Commission filing is an expenditure for close to $20,000 on eye patches with a notation they were designated as "promotional items."
The Texas Republican, who started serving in Congress in 2019, lost his right eye in 2012 while serving in Afghanistan as a Navy SEAL and required surgery to save his left eye. During his service, he was awarded two Bronze Stars, the Purple Heart, and the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal before retiring as a lieutenant commander in 2016.
An analysis of Crenshaw's schedule B itemized list shows 519 total disbursements, which includes one for $19,297.06 going to Sweet Eye Patches based in Phoenix, Ariz., among other regular expenses for travel, advertising and other standard campaign fare.
A notation on the list attributes the expense as "PROMOTIONAL ITEM EYE PATCHES".
ALSO IN THE NEWS: Marjorie Taylor Greene spent more than $65,000 in campaign funds on home fence
On the Republican's campaign website shop, there is a link to purchase an "official Crenshaw Eye Patch" for $35, with the copy reading, "This is your chance to wear the same eyepatch as Dan Crenshaw. This is your exclusive opportunity to add it to your memorabilia or wear the same thing as a sitting U.S. Congressman! Reserve yours today! Made from a custom high-performance fluoroelastomer, this Sweet Eye Patch band is durable and strong, yet enjoyably soft. The smooth material is skin-safe and feels comfortable."
Sweey Eye Patches also has a testimonial praising Crenshaw, with the owner identifying himself as "Charlie" writing, "Here is some history for those who like to read: November of 2019: I'm making patches as I do. Plugging away at it. Happy to be doing something that really makes a difference in people lives. Real simple. One day, Congressmen Dan Crenshaw sends me a text asking if he should let folks in on where he gets his patches. Not being one to follow politics I really had no idea what kind of momentum he had at the time and where his popularity would put me. Well, the video he posted had a million views in 5 days! It took my site viral. I sold more patches in 2 months than I had in 5 years total!"
Charlie also notes that eye patches are only available through Crenshaw and included a link back.
Stone of Scone - Wikipedia
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 12:49
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Historic Scottish artefact used in coronations for centuries
The Stone of Scone (; Scottish Gaelic: An Lia F il; Scots: Stane o Scuin)'--also known as the Stone of Destiny, and often referred to in England as The Coronation Stone'--is an oblong block of red sandstone that has been used for centuries in the coronation of the monarchs of Scotland. It is also known as Jacob's Pillow Stone and the Tanist Stone, and as clach-na-cinneamhain in Scottish Gaelic.
Historically, the artefact was kept at the now-ruined Scone Abbey in Scone, near Perth, Scotland. It was seized by Edward I's forces from Scone during the English invasion of Scotland in 1296, and was used in the coronation of the monarchs of England as well as the monarchs of Great Britain and the United Kingdom, following the Treaty of Union of 1707. Its size is 26 in (66 cm) by 16.7 in (42 cm) by 10.5 in (26.7 cm) and its weight is approximately 335 lb (152 kg). A roughly incised cross is on one surface, and an iron ring at each end aids with transport.[1] Monarchs used to sit on the Stone of Scone itself until a wooden platform was added to the Coronation Chair in the 17th century.[2]
In 1996, the British Government decided to return the stone to Scotland, when not in use at coronations, and it was transported to Edinburgh Castle, where it is now kept with the Scottish Crown Jewels.
Origin and legends [ edit ] Replica of the Stone of Scone in front of a much later chapel
In the 14th century the English cleric and historian Walter Hemingford identified the previous location of the Scottish coronation stone as the monastery of Scone, three kilometres (two miles) north of Perth:
Apud Monasterium de Scone positus est lapis pergrandis in ecclesia Dei, juxta magnum altare, concavus quidem ad modum rotundae cathedrae confectus, in quo futuri reges loco quasi coronationis ponebantur ex more.[3]
At the monastery of Scone, in the church of God, near to the high altar, was placed a large stone, hollowed out as a round chair, on which future kings were placed for their coronation, according to custom.
Various theories and legends exist about the stone's history prior to its placement in Scone. One story concerns Fergus, son of Erc, the first King of the Scots ( r. c. '‰ 498 '' 501 ) in Scotland, whose transport of the Stone from Ireland to Argyll, where he was crowned on it, was recorded[4] in a 15th-century chronicle. Some versions identify the stone brought by Fergus with the Lia Fil (Irish for "stone of destiny") used at Tara for inaugurating the High Kings of Ireland. Other traditions contend that the Lia Fil remains at Tara.[5][6] (Inis Fil, "The Island of Destiny", is one of the traditional names of Ireland.) Other legends place the origins of the Stone in Biblical times and identify it as the Stone of Jacob, taken by Jacob from Bethel while on the way to Haran (Genesis 28:10''22).[7] This very same Stone of Jacob was then supposedly taken to ancient Ireland by the prophet Jeremiah.[8]
Contradicting these legends, geologists have proven that the stone taken by Edward I of England to Westminster[9] is a "lower Old Red Sandstone", which was quarried in the vicinity of Scone.[10] Doubts over the authenticity of the stone at Westminster have existed for a long time: a blog post by retired Scottish academic and writer of historical fiction, Marie MacPherson, shows that they date back at least two hundred years.[11]
A letter to the editor of the Morning Chronicle, dated 2 January 1819, states:
On the 19th of November, as the servants belonging to the West Mains of Dunsinane-house, were employed in carrying away stones from the excavation made among the ruins that point out the site of Macbeth's castle here, part of the ground they stood on suddenly gave way, and sank down about six feet, discovering a regularly built vault, about six feet long and four wide. None of the men being injured, curiosity induced them to clear out the subterranean recess, when they discovered among the ruins a large stone, weighing about 500lb [230 kg], which is pronounced to be of the meteoric or semi-metallic kind. This stone must have lain here during the long series of ages since Macbeth's reign. Beside it were also found two round tablets, of a composition resembling bronze. On one of these two lines are engraved, which a gentleman has thus deciphered.'-- 'The sconce (or shadow) of kingdom come, until Sylphs in air carry me again to Bethel.' These plates exhibit the figures of targets for the arms. From time immemorial it has been believed among us here, that unseen hands brought Jacob's pillow from Bethel and dropped it on the site where the palace of Scoon now stands. A strong belief is also entertained by many in this part of the country that it was only a representation of this Jacob's pillow that Edward sent to Westminster, the sacred stone not having been found by him. The curious here, aware of such traditions, and who have viewed these venerable remains of antiquity, agree that Macbeth may, or rather must, have deposited the stone in question at the bottom of his Castle, on the hill of Dunsinane (from the trouble of the times), where it has been found by the workmen. This curious stone has been shipped for London for the inspection of the scientific amateur, in order to discover its real quality.[1]
Dunsinane Hill has the remains of a late prehistoric hill fort, and this has historical associations with Macbeth, but no remains dating to the 11th century have been identified on the hill.[12]
Westminster Abbey [ edit ] In 1296, during the First Scottish War of Independence, King Edward I of England took the stone as spoils of war and removed it to Westminster Abbey, where it was fitted into a wooden chair '' known as the Coronation Chair or King Edward's Chair '' on which most subsequent English and then British sovereigns have been crowned. Edward I sought to claim the status of the "Lord Paramount" of Scotland, with the right to oversee its King.[13]
Some doubt exists over the stone captured by Edward I. The Westminster Stone theory posits that the monks at Scone Palace hid the real stone in the River Tay, or buried it on Dunsinane Hill, and that the English troops were tricked into taking a substitute. Some proponents of this theory claim that historic descriptions of the stone do not match the present stone.[14]
In the 1328 Treaty of Northampton between the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England, England agreed to return the captured stone to Scotland; rioting crowds prevented it from being removed from Westminster Abbey.[15] The stone remained in England for another six centuries. When King James VI of Scotland assumed the English throne as James I of England, he was crowned at Westminster Abbey on the stone.[16] For the next century, the Stuart kings and queens of Scotland once again sat on the stone '' but at their coronation as kings and queens of, and in, England.
1914 suffragette bombing [ edit ] On 11 June 1914, as part of the suffragette bombing and arson campaign of 1912-1914, suffragettes of the Women's Social and Political Union planted a bomb loaded with nuts and bolts to act as shrapnel next to the Coronation Chair and Stone;[17][18] no serious injuries were reported in the aftermath of the subsequent explosion despite the building having been busy with 80-100 visitors,[19][20] but the deflagration blew off a corner of the Coronation Chair[17][18] and caused the Stone to break in half '' although this was not discovered until 1950, when four Scottish nationalists broke into the church to steal the stone and return it to Scotland.[18] Two days after the Westminster Abbey bombing, a second suffragette bomb was discovered before it could explode in St Paul's Cathedral.[17]
Early 20th century [ edit ] Concerns about it being damaged or destroyed by German air raids during the Second World War resulted in the Coronation Chair being moved to Gloucester Cathedral for the duration of the war. Meanwhile, concerns about the propaganda implications of the stone falling into German hands led to it being hidden behind ancient lead coffins in a burial vault under Abbot Islip's Chapel, situated off the north ambulatory of the abbey.[21] Other than the Dean, Paul de Labilliere and the Surveyor of the Fabric of Westminster Abbey, Charles Peers, only a few other people knew of its hiding place. Worried that the secret could be lost if all of them were killed during the war, Peers drew up three maps showing its location. Two were sent in sealed envelopes to Canada, one to the Canadian Prime Minister William King, who deposited it in the Bank of Canada's vault in Ottawa. The other went to the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, who stored his envelope in the Bank of Montreal in Toronto. Once he had received word that the envelopes had been received, Peers destroyed the third map, which he had been keeping at his bank.[21] Peers later received a suggestion via the Office of Works that the Stone should be sent to Scotland for safekeeping:
''I trust the Office of Works will not lend itself to this attempt by the Scotch to get hold of the Stone by a side wind. You cannot be so simple as not to know that this acquisitive nation have ever since the time of Edward I been attempting by fair means or foul, to get possession of the Stone, and during my time at Westminster we have received warnings from the Police that Scottish emissaries were loose in London, intending to steal the Stone and we had better lock up the Confessor's Chapel, where it is normally kept.''[21]
Removal [ edit ] On Christmas Day 1950, a group of four Scottish students (Ian Hamilton, Gavin Vernon, Kay Matheson,[22] and Alan Stuart) removed the stone from Westminster Abbey, intending to return it to Scotland.[23] During the removal process, the stone broke into two pieces.[24][25] After burying the greater part of the Stone in a Kent field, where they camped for a few days,[26] they uncovered the buried stone and returned to Scotland, along with a new accomplice, John Josselyn.
According to one American diplomat who was posted in Edinburgh at the time, the stone was briefly hidden in a trunk in the basement of the consulate's Public Affairs Officer, unbeknownst to him, then brought up further north.[27] The smaller piece was similarly brought north at a later time. The entire stone was passed to a senior Glasgow politician, who arranged for the Glasgow stonemason Robert Gray to repair it professionally.[28][29]
The British Government ordered a major search for the stone, but was unsuccessful. The stone was left by those that had been hiding it on the altar of Arbroath Abbey on 11 April 1951, a property owned by the Church of Scotland. Once the London police were informed of its whereabouts, the stone was returned to Westminster four months after its removal. Afterward, rumours circulated that copies of the stone had been made, and that the returned stone was not the original.[30][31]
Return to Scotland [ edit ] On 3 July 1996, in response to a growing discussion around Scottish cultural history, the British Government announced that the stone would return to Scotland, 700 years after it had been taken.[31][32] On 15 November 1996, after a handover ceremony at the border between representatives of the Home Office and of the Scottish Office, the stone was transported to Edinburgh Castle. An official handover ceremony occurred in the Castle on 30 November 1996, St Andrew's Day, to mark the arrival of the stone.[33] Prince Andrew, Duke of York, representing Queen Elizabeth II, formally handed over the Royal Warrant transferring the stone into the safekeeping of the Commissioners for the Regalia.[34][35] It currently remains alongside the crown jewels of Scotland, the Honours of Scotland, in the Crown Room of Edinburgh Castle.[36]
Future public display [ edit ] As part of a consultation in 2019,[37] the Scottish Government asked the public for their views on the preferred future location for public display of the Stone of Scone. Two options were proposed: featuring as the centrepiece of a proposed new museum in Perth (a £23 million redevelopment of the former Perth City Hall) or remaining at the present location at Edinburgh Castle in a major redevelopment of the existing display.[38][39]
In December 2020, the Scottish Government announced the stone would be relocated to Perth City Hall.[40]
In September 2022, Historic Environment Scotland announced that the stone would temporarily return to Westminster Abbey for the coronation of Charles III.[41]
Film and television [ edit ] In December 1980 the film The Pinch aired on BBC 2.[42][43]In the episode "Pendragon" of the animated series Gargoyles, King Arthur returns to Britain in the 20th century and receives instructions from the Stone on how to locate Excalibur.The season 5, episode 15 story arc of Highlander: The Series retells how Duncan MacLeod was involved in the theft and return of the stone.The Stone of Scone's removal from Westminster Abbey and return to Scotland is the subject of the 2008 film Stone of Destiny.[26]In the 2010 film The King's Speech, Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush) intentionally provokes George VI (Colin Firth) by sitting in the Coronation Chair and propping his feet on the Stone.It also appears in the final two episodes of Hamish Macbeth, "Destiny" parts 1 and 2.Episode 2 "Stoned" of the Stuff the British Stole series hosted by Marc Fennell aired in November 2022 on ABC TV.[44]Literature [ edit ] In his 1944 novel The North Wind of Love (Bk.1), Compton Mackenzie adumbrates the liberation of the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey and its return to Scotland by a group of Scottish Nationalists. However, the plan was aborted after one of the protagonists in his cups told a journalist about it, the journalist promptly arranging for the plot to be published in the daily press. It seems likely that this fictional plot to remove the Stone was the inspiration for its actual removal in 1950.Andrew Greig's 2008 novel Romanno Bridge is about a quest for the real Stone of Scone.August Derleth featured the removal and return of the stone in his short story "The Adventure of the Stone of Scone".In the alternate history novel Dominion by C. J. Sansom, the Stone of Scone is returned to Scotland by the fictional Nazi puppet government in control of the United Kingdom during World War II.In The Fifth Elephant, by Terry Pratchett, the Scone of Stone [used for the coronation of Dwarven kings] is destroyed and duplicated.[45]In the 1936 novel, Nightwood, by Djuna Barnes, Dr. Matthew O'Connor mentions the "Holy Stone" and its connection to Westminster Abbey and Simon Brec, during an argument with Nora Flood.[46]See also [ edit ] Blarney Stone (Ireland)Coronation Stone, Kingston upon Thames (England)Duke's Chair (Austria)Edward Faraday OdlumHistory of ScotlandLia Fil (Ireland)OmphalosPrince's Stone (Slovenia)Stone of JacobStones of Mora (Sweden)References [ edit ] ^ a b "The stone of Destiny". English Monarchs. 2004''2005 . Retrieved 30 August 2014 . ^ James Yorke (17 August 2013). "Review of The Coronation Chair by Warwick Rodwell". The Spectator . Retrieved 11 February 2016 . ^ Skene, William Forbes (1869). The Coronation Stone. Edinburgh: Edmonston & Douglas. pp. 11 . Retrieved 5 February 2016 . ^ Andree, p. 163. ^ Danvers, Frederick Charles (1877). The covenant; or, Jacob's heritage. William Henry Guest. pp. 226''233. ^ Petrie, George (1839). "On the History and Antiquities of Tara Hill". The Transactions of the Royal Irish Academy. Royal Irish Academy: 159''162. ^ "Genesis 28:10''22". . Retrieved 24 February 2018 . ^ 'England, the Remnant of Judah, and the Israel of Ephraim' by F.R.A. Glover (Frederick Robert Augustus Glover). ^ 'The Stone of Destiny: Symbol of Nationhood' by David Breeze and Graeme Munro ^ John Prebble, The Lion in the North. ^ Marie MacPherson (29 November 2013). "The Stone of Destiny". English Historical Fiction Authors. Google Inc . Retrieved 30 August 2014 . ^ Dunsinane Hill, fort,, accessed 10 June 2022 ^ Arundell, Brian, of Wardour Howard. Judah Scepter: A Historical and Religious Perspective, iUnivers (2010) p. 3 ^ "Salmond: 'Stone of Destiny is fake' ". 7 January 2018 . Retrieved 24 February 2018 . ^ Brown, Christopher "Bannockburn 1314" ^ Horatio Brown, Calendar State Papers, Venice: 1603''1607, vol. 10 (London, 1900), pp. 75''76 no. 105: John Speed, The History of Great Britaine (London, 1614), p. 885. ^ a b c "Suffragettes, violence and militancy". The British Library . Retrieved 2 October 2021 . ^ a b c Webb, Simon (2014). The Suffragette Bombers: Britain's Forgotten Terrorists. Pen and Sword. p. 148. ISBN 978-1783400645. ^ Walker, Rebecca (2020). "Deeds, Not Words: The Suffragettes and Early Terrorism in the City of London". The London Journal. 45 (1): 59. doi:10.1080/03058034.2019.1687222. ISSN 0305-8034. S2CID 212994082. ^ Jones, Ian (2016). London: Bombed Blitzed and Blown Up: The British Capital Under Attack Since 1867. Frontline Books. p. 65. ISBN 978-1473879010. ^ a b c Shenton, Caroline (2021). National Treasures: Saving the Nation's Art in World War II (Hardback). London: John Murray. pp. 203''204. ISBN 978-1529387438. ^ "Kay Matheson" . The Daily Telegraph. London. 14 July 2013. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022 . Retrieved 4 June 2019 . ^ "Blog Archive >> Emotion Nationalism And The Brave-Heart Factor". Ian Hamilton Qc. 20 January 2008. Archived from the original on 12 July 2011 . Retrieved 13 November 2010 . ^ Thomas Quinn (25 May 2008). "Film on Stone of Destiny heist 'will end UK' ". The Guardian . Retrieved 14 May 2017 . ^ Olga Craig (14 December 2008). "Ian Hamilton on Stone of Destiny: I felt I was holding Scotland's soul" . Telegraph. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022 . Retrieved 25 December 2011 . ^ a b Scott, Kirsty (14 October 2008). "The Caledonian job". The Guardian. ^ "Scotland, A Land Apart". Association for Diplomatic Studies & Training . Retrieved 30 July 2021 . ^ "The Stone of Destiny". Scone Palace Perthshire. 12 July 2013 . Retrieved 17 April 2017 . ^ "Offer to repair Stone of Destiny". The Glasgow Herald. 17 September 1974. p. 3 . Retrieved 14 May 2017 . ^ Richard Blystone (15 November 1996). "Scotland's 'Stone of Scone' finds its way home". CNN . Retrieved 30 August 2014 . ^ a b Richard Halloran (26 August 2014). "The Sad, Dark End of the British Empire". Politico Magazine . Retrieved 30 August 2014 . ^ "The return north of Jacob's pillow may prove cold comfort to Mr Major, argues Malcolm Dickson Tory moment of destiny". The Glasgow Herald. 4 July 1996 . Retrieved 4 August 2020 . ^ Ascherson, Neal (1 December 1996). "Scotland welcomes the new Stone age" . The Independent on Sunday. Archived from the original on 25 May 2022 . Retrieved 3 March 2017 . ^ "20 lesser known facts about the Stone of Destiny '' 20 facts for 20 years!". Edinburgh Castle Blog. 30 November 2016 . Retrieved 24 February 2018 . ^ The ceremonial of the day: "No. 24101". The Edinburgh Gazette. 29 November 1996. pp. 2861''2862. ^ "See and do > highlights > the Stone of Destiny". . Retrieved 4 August 2020 . ^ "The Stone of Destiny" . Retrieved 16 August 2019 . ^ Compare:Stone of Destiny '' future location: public engagement report. Scottish Government '' Riaghaltas na h-Alba. 2020. ISBN 978-1800045200 . Retrieved 15 April 2021 . Respondents were not asked to state their location preferences. However, in order to provide some context for the findings presented, it is noted that a large majority of respondents (around 9 in 10) did state their location preference. Around three quarters of respondents favoured Perth, around 1 in 10 favoured another location than Edinburgh or Perth, and fewer than one in ten favoured the Stone continuing to be located in Edinburgh Castle. [...] Of the one in ten who favoured another location, a large majority favoured relocating the Stone to Scone. ^ "Perth wants Stone of Destiny to return to 'ancestral home' ". BBC News. 16 August 2019 . Retrieved 16 August 2019 . The public are to be asked whether the Stone of Destiny should be displayed at a new museum in Perth. [...] The proposal is for it to be the centrepiece of a new £23m museum at the former Perth City Hall. [...] The Commissioners for the Safeguarding of the Regalia have launched a consultation on the stone's future location. [...] If it remains at Edinburgh Castle, Historic Environment Scotland plan a major redevelopment of the display. ^ "The Stone of Destiny". Scottish Government . Retrieved 23 December 2020 . ^ "Stone of Destiny to return to Westminster Abbey for coronation". BBC News. 12 September 2022 . Retrieved 13 September 2022 . ^ Dorothy Grace Elder (23 December 1980). "Last Night's View". The Glasgow Herald . Retrieved 14 October 2022 . ^ "The Pinch (1980)". British Film Institute . Retrieved 14 October 2022 . ^ "How Four Young Scots Stole the Stone of Destiny". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 7 November 2022 . Retrieved 26 November 2022 . ^ Pratchett, Terry (1999). The Fifth Elephant. Doubleday. ISBN 0-385-40995-8. ^ Barnes, Djuna (1937). Nightwood. New York: New Directions. p. 125. ISBN 0-8112-0005-1. Further reading [ edit ] No Stone Unturned: The Story of the Stone of Destiny, Ian R. Hamilton, Victor Gollancz and also Funk and Wagnalls, 1952, 1953, hardcover, 191 pages, An account of the return of the stone to Scotland in 1950 (older, but more available)Taking of the Stone of Destiny, Ian R. Hamilton, Seven Hills Book Distributors, 1992, hardcover, ISBN 0-948403-24-1 (modern reprint, but expensive)Martin-Gil F.J., Martin-Ramos P. and Martin-Gil J. "Is Scotland's Coronation Stone a Measurement Standard from the Middle Bronze Age?". Anistoriton, issue P024 of 14 December 2002.The Stone of Destiny: Symbol of Nationhood by David Breeze, Chief Inspector of Ancient Monuments, and Graeme Munro, Chief Executive, Historic Scotland; Published by Historic Scotland 1997: ISBN 1-900168-44-8External links [ edit ] Skene, William Forbes (1869). The Coronation Stone. Edinburgh: Edmonston & Douglas . Retrieved 9 October 2014 . Highlights: The Stone of Destiny Edinburgh Castle websiteThe Stone of Destiny, sacred kingship in the 21st century
Poland suspends food imports from Ukraine to assist its farmers | Russia-Ukraine war News | Al Jazeera
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 12:48
Poland's governing party leader Jarosław KaczyÅski says the list of banned items would include grain and honey.
Published On 15 Apr 2023 15 Apr 2023
Poland's government said it will temporarily prohibit grain and other food imports from Ukraine as it seeks to address the rising anger of Polish farmers, who say they are losing huge amounts of money to a glut of Ukrainian grain on the market.
The leader of Poland's governing party, Jarosław KaczyÅski, said that the Polish countryside is facing a ''moment of crisis,'' and that while Poland supported Ukraine, it was forced to act to protect its farmers.
''Today, the government has decided on a regulation that prohibits the importation of grain, but also dozens of other types of food, to Poland,'' KaczyÅski told a party convention in eastern Poland on Saturday.
The government announced that the ban on imports would last until June 30. The regulation also includes a prohibition on imports of sugar, eggs, meat, milk and other dairy products and fruits and vegetables.
Ukraine's Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food said that it ''regrets the decision of its Polish counterparts''.
''Polish farmers are facing a difficult situation, but we emphasise that Ukrainian farmers are facing the most difficult situation'', it said.
The ministry proposed the two countries come to a new agreement in the coming days that would satisfy both sides.
Farmers in neighbouring countries have also complained about Ukrainian grain flooding their countries and creating a glut that has caused prices to fall '' and causing them to take steep losses.
Romanian farmers protest outside the European Commission's Offices over the price of grains after an influx of cheap Ukrainian grains in Buchares [File: Inquam Photos/George Calin via Reuters]''The increasing imports of agricultural products from Ukraine cause serious disturbances in the markets of our countries, great damage to producers and social unrest,'' the Polish agriculture minister, Robert Telus, told his counterparts from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary this week. All are members of the European Union and he said the bloc should take urgent action on the matter.
''We cannot accept a situation where the entire burden of dealing with increased imports rests mainly with farmers from our countries,'' Telus said.
The situation is the result of Russia's war against Ukraine. After Russia blocked traditional export sea passages, the European Union lifted duties on Ukrainian grain to facilitate its transport to Africa and the Middle East.
Grain has since flowed into Poland, but much of its has not travelled further on to the Middle East and Northern Africa, as it was meant to under the EU plan.
Poland's government has sought to blame the EU for the situation. But some unions and opposition politicians have accused government-linked companies of causing the problem by buying up cheap, low-quality Ukrainian grain, and then selling it to bread and pasta plants as high-quality Polish produce.
The leader of the protesting farmers and head of the AgroUnia group, Michał Kołodziejczak, estimated farmers' losses at up to 10 billion zlotys ($2.3bn).
The rising anger of the farmers comes in advance of an election later this year and is a headache for the governing conservative Prawo i Sprawiedliwość party as it seeks a third term. Polls show that it is the most popular party in the country but could fall short of a majority in the next parliament.
It faces a particular challenge from a far-right party, Confederation, which combines libertarian and nationalist views and which contains some members seen as sympathetic to Russia. The party has grown to be the third-most-popular party in some polls.
KaczyÅski on Saturday also announced other measures meant to help farmers, including maintaining subsidies on fertiliser.
Montana Just Passed The First State TikTok Ban
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 12:22
Montana made history on Friday by becoming the first state legislature to approve a wholesale TikTok ban affecting nearly all devices in the state. The first-of-its-kind ban, which goes far beyond previous state efforts banning the app on government devices , could set the precedent for a wave of TikTok bans in other Republican-led states. Widespread TikTok bans, for better or worse, could become a reality.
Mourning the Loss of Addison Rae's Debut Album | The Meme Machine
The state's House of Representatives voted in favor of the bill, called SB 419 , by a margin of 54-43 on Friday afternoon. Montana's state senate already approved the bill back in March, meaning the only thing preventing it from becoming law is a signature from governor and known journalist body-slammer Greg Gianforte. Once signed, the ban will take effect in January 2024. However, the bill would become void if Congress enacts its own national TikTok ban. The bill also wouldn't apply if TikTok divests its US business from Chinese ownership.
How would the ban work?SB 419 prohibits TikTok from operating ''within the territorial jurisdiction of Montana,'' over fears the app could be manipulated by the Chinese government for espionage purposes. If TikTok or app stores violate the law, Montana's Department of Justice could slap them with penalties of up to $10,000 per day for the length of the violation. Those fines would apply to entities facilitating TikTok's download rather than the app's users.
''TikTok endangers the safety of Montanans and Americans at large,'' Montana state Sen. Shelley Vance, one of the bill's primary authors said according to KTVH. ''We know that beyond a doubt that TikTok's parent company ByteDance is operating as a surveillance arm of the Chinese Communist Party and gathers information about Americans against their will.''
It's worth noting here that while numerous lawmakers and intelligence agencies have justified banning TikTok out of national security concerns, there's still no concrete evidence the Chinese government has even used TikTok to surveil American users. But previous reporting has shown ByteDance employees in China can and have been able to view US user data .
In an email to Gizmodo, a TikTok spokesperson said the bill amounted to censorship and would almost certainly be challenged by courts.
''We will continue to fight for TikTok users and creators in Montana whose livelihoods and First Amendment rights are threatened by this egregious government overreach,'' a TikTok spokesperson told Gizmodo.
Opponents of the Montana bill like the ACLU say it would violate the First Amendment and be a disaster for freedom of expression. In a letter sent to lawmakers earlier this week, the ACLU and five other civil liberties organizations said they had failed to prove TikTok poses any immediate harm to Montana residents.
''Montana's TikTok bill is censorship, plain and simple,'' ACLU senior policy counsel Jenna Leventoff said in a statement. ''Montanans deserve better than to have their representatives violate their free speech rights by cutting them off from a unique platform that allows them to speak their minds, exchange information, and learn new things.''
Did Montana just pave the way for a nationwide ban?By approving the nation's first TikTok ban, Montana may have just given a green light to Republican lawmakers across the country to push forward with their own copycat bills. If that happens, TikTok may have no choice but to agree to a forced spinoff of its US business currently favored by the Biden Administration.
A patchwork of state TikTok bans could also encourage lawmakers in Congress to rip the band-aid off and pursue its own federal TikTok ban. While that seemed unlikely just a few months ago, lawmakers from both sides of the political aisle seemed united in their aggressive stance towards TikTok during a combative hearing with the company's CEO last month. There are currently around half a dozen bills floating around D.C. that, one way or another, would end up with TikTok banned.
Treating beef like coal would make a big dent in greenhouse-gas emissions | The Economist
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 03:51
F EW DISHES whet more palates than a juicy cut of beef. One poll in 2014 found that steak was Americans' favourite food. Unfortunately, by cooking so many cows, humans are cooking themselves, too.
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The impact of food on greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions can slip under the radar. In a survey in Britain last year, the share of respondents saying that ''producing plants and meat on farms'' was a ''significant contributor'' to climate change was the lowest among ten listed activities. Yet two papers published this year in Nature Food find that food, especially beef, creates more GHGs than previously thought. Forgoing steaks may be one of the most efficient ways to reduce your carbon footprint.
In 2019 the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimated that the global food system was responsible for 21-37% of GHG emissions. This March researchers from the European Commission and the UN's Food and Agriculture Office released a study with a central estimate near the top of this range. It attributed 34% of GHGs produced in 2015 to food.
This elevated share stems in part from accounting choices. The paper assigns the full impact of deforestation to the agriculture that results from it; includes emissions after food is sold (such as from waste and cooking); and counts non-food crops like cotton. But even when the authors excluded embedded emissions from sources like transport and packaging, they still found that agriculture generated 24% of GHGs. According to the World Resources Institute, a research group, cars, trains, ships and planes produce a total of 16%.
Another recent paper, by Xiaoming Xu of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and eight co-authors, allocates this impact among 171 crops and 16 animal products. It finds that animal-based foods account for 57% of agricultural GHGs, versus 29% for food from plants. Beef and cow's milk alone made up 34%. Combined with the earlier study's results, this implies that cattle produce 12% of GHG emissions.
Relative to other food sources, beef is uniquely carbon-intensive. Because cattle emit methane and need large pastures that are often created via deforestation, they produce seven times as many GHGs per calorie of meat as pigs do, and around 40% more than farmed prawns do. This makes beef a bigger outlier among foods than coal is among sources of electricity: burning coal generates just 14% more GHGs than burning oil, another common fuel.
These figures may understate the environmental benefits of shrinking the cattle population. Methane dissipates relatively fast, meaning that past bovine emissions soon stop warming the planet if those animals are not replaced. Such a change could also raise output of plant-based foods, by making land now used to grow animal feed available for other crops. It takes 33 plant calories to produce one calorie of beef.
The simplest way to cut beef output is for people to eat other animals instead, or become vegetarians. But convincing carnivores to give up their burgers is a tall order. Fortunately, lab-grown meats are moving from Petri dishes to high-end restaurants (see Technology Quarterly). Doing without beef from live cattle is hard to imagine, but the same was true of coal 100 years ago. Cultured meat could play an essential role in staving off a climate catastrophe.'–
Correction (Oct 1st 2021): A previous version of this article stated that coal emits 34 times more CO2 per unit of energy than hydropower. The correct figure is 24 times. Sorry
Sources: ''Food systems are responsible for a third of global anthropogenic GHG emissions'', by Crippa et al., 2021; ''Global greenhouse gas emissions from animal-based foods are twice those of plant-based foods'', by Xu et al., 2021; Quantis; Heller et al., 2018; J. Poore, & T. Nemecek, 2018; The World Resources Institute; Pehl et al., 2017; IPCC AR5; Our World in Data
This article appeared in the Graphic detail section of the print edition under the headline "The beef with beef"
From the October 2nd 2021 editionDiscover stories from this section and more in the list of contents
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IMF Unveils New Global Currency Known As The "Universal Monetary Unit" To "Transform" World Economy | ZeroHedge
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 17:09
Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,
A new global currency just launched, but 99 percent of the global population has no idea what just happened.
The ''Universal Monetary Unit'', also known as ''Unicoin'', is an ''international central bank digital currency'' that has been designed to work in conjunction with all existing national currencies. This should set off alarm bells for all of us, because the widespread adoption of a new ''global currency'' would be a giant step forward for the globalist agenda. The IMF did not create this new currency, but it was unveiled at a major IMF gathering earlier this week'...
Today, at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Spring Meetings 2023, the Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) announced their official launch of an international central bank digital currency (CBDC) that strengthens the monetary sovereignty of participating central banks and complies with the recent crypto assets policy recommendations proposed by the IMF.
Universal Monetary Unit (UMU), symbolized as ANSI Character, ', is legally a money commodity, can transact in any legal tender settlement currency, and functions like a CBDC to enforce banking regulations and to protect the financial integrity of the international banking system.
As the press release quoted above indicates, this new ''Universal Monetary Unit'' was created by the Digital Currency Monetary Authority.
So who in the world is the Digital Currency Monetary Authority?
Honestly, I had no idea until I started doing research for this article.
The press release says that the organization consists of ''sovereign states, central banks, commercial and retail banks, and other financial institutions'''...
The DCMA is a world leader in the advocacy of digital currency and monetary policy innovations for governments and central banks. Membership within the DCMA consists of sovereign states, central banks, commercial and retail banks, and other financial institutions.
Basically, it sounds like a secretive cabal of international banks and national governments is conspiring to push this new currency down our throats.
We are being told that the ''Universal Monetary Unit'' is '''Crypto 2.0'', and those that created it are hoping that it will be widely adopted by ''all constituencies in a global economy'''...
The DCMA introduces Universal Monetary Unit as Crypto 2.0 because it innovates a new wave of cryptographic technologies for realizing a digital currency public monetary system with a widespread adoption framework encompassing use cases for all constituencies in a global economy.
I don't know about you, but this sounds super shady to me.
Of course the Digital Currency Monetary Authority is not the only one that has been working on a new digital currency.
The UK has also been working on one.
The same is true for the European Union.
And would it surprise anyone that the Biden administration is touting the potential benefits of a ''digital form of the U.S. dollar''? The following comes from the official White House website'...
A United States central bank digital currency (CBDC) would be a digital form of the U.S. dollar. While the U.S. has not yet decided whether it will pursue a CBDC, the U.S. has been closely examining the implications of, and options for, issuing a CBDC. If the U.S. pursued a CBDC, there could be many possible benefits, such as facilitating efficient and low-cost transactions, fostering greater access to the financial system, boosting economic growth, and supporting the continued centrality of the U.S. within the international financial system.
I don't think that it is a coincidence that governments all over the western world are simultaneously developing CBDCs.
And the IMF has actually already put together an extensive handbook ''to assist central banks and governments throughout the world in their CBDC rollouts'''...
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is putting together a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) handbook to assist central banks and governments throughout the world in their CBDC rollouts.
Published publicly on April 10, the ''IMF Approach to Central Bank Digital Currency Capacity Development'' report outlines the IMF's multi-year strategy for aiding CBDC rollouts, including the development of a living ''CBDC Handbook'' for monetary authorities to follow.
A lot of people out there will cheer when these digital currencies are introduced.
But it is imperative to understand that once everyone is using them, your financial privacy will be almost totally gone.
Authorities will be able to track virtually everything that you buy and sell, and I am sure that they won't hesitate to use that information against you.
Needless to say, the potential for tyranny in such a system is off the charts.
Can you imagine a world in which you are restricted from buying meat for a while because you have already used your ''carbon credits'' for the month?
Your ''financial privileges'' could potentially be restricted at any time at the whim of a government bureaucrat, and if you are a big enough troublemaker you could be ''deplatformed'' from the system permanently.
Of course in order for such a system to have real teeth, cash and other forms of payment will need to be phased out, and that is precisely what is happening right now in Europe. The following comes from the official website of the European Parliament'...
To restrict transactions in cash and crypto assets, MEPs want to cap payments that can be accepted by persons providing goods or services. They set limits up to '‚¬7000 for cash payments and '‚¬1000 for crypto-asset transfers, where the customer cannot be identified.
Ultimately, they will just keep lowering the limits until the use of cash is almost completely eliminated.
Everyone will be slowly but surely forced on to the new digital system, and it will be a system that they control with an iron fist.
And most people will willingly go along with it. These days, most people are just scraping by from month to month and one recent survey found that 70 percent of all Americans are ''financially stressed'' at this point'...
Inflation, economic instability and a lack of savings have an increasing number of Americans feeling financially stressed.
Some 70% of Americans admit to being stressed about their personal finances these days and a majority '-- 52% '-- of U.S. adults said their financial stress has increased since before the Covid-19 pandemic began in March 2020, according to a new CNBC Your Money Financial Confidence Survey conducted in partnership with Momentive.
Most Americans simply do not care that these new digital currencies could open a door for great tyranny.
They just want to be able to pay the bills and take care of their families, and if our politicians tell them that this new system is good for the economy they will be all for it.
But those of us that are awake know that more globalism doesn't lead anywhere good.
Concentrating even more power in the hands of the international elite is always a bad idea, and hopefully we can start to get more people to understand this.
* * *
Michael's new book entitled ''End Times'' is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on, and you can check out his new Substack newsletter right here.
Teacher's meningitis death forces Colorado school to close temporarily
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 13:34
A Denver-area high school closed this week after two of its teachers died - at least one due to symptoms consistent with bacterial meningitis.
Eaglecrest High School in Aurora canceled Tuesday night athletics and activities and Wednesday classes out of what officials called an abundance of caution following the death of teacher Madelaine Schmidt.
Schmidt worked as an Integrated Learning Center (ILC) teacher at the public school, according to its website. She was also a high school girls' soccer coach.
Schmidt, 24, had symptoms consistent with the illness, the local health department reported. Symptoms include a sudden, high fever; headache; stiff neck; nausea or vomiting; or a dark purple rash, according to health officials.
"The Arapahoe Public Health Department is working closely with the Cherry Creek School District, sharing information, and working together to perform contact tracing," the county's public information officer Anders Nelson told USA TODAY.
Classes resumed Thursday along with athletics and activities events, schools spokesperson Lauren Snell said.
No other staffers or students have reported bacterial meningitis, Snell told USA TODAY Thursday. Snell said the ILC program will remain closed until Monday.
"It is with great sadness that we share with you that Judith Geoffroy, ILC para, and Maddie Schmidt, ILC teacher, both passed away in the last 24 hours, the district released in a statement to parents and the school community this week. "These tragic deaths appear to be of natural causes and are unrelated. We have shared these losses with our staff and will have the district mental health team available to assist them in coping with their grief."
It's unclear whether Schmidt's case was an isolated incident or part of a broader outbreak.
Meningococcal disease is caused by a bacteria, and when the linings of the brain and spinal cord become infected, it is called meningitis. It is spread through respiratory and throat secretions such as saliva and spit. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says although it is not as contagious as the flu, it can spread through close, lengthy contact such as kissing.
Two other district deaths reportedAnother teacher who worked with Schmidt at the same school also died over the weekend, Kelly C. Lear, a pathologist with the Arapahoe County Coroner's Office, confirmed.
Judith Geoffroy, a 63-year-old paraprofessional in the Integrated Learning Center, died but her official cause of death had not been confirmed according to a statement released Wednesday.
Lear said both the bodies of Geoffroy and Schmidt will undergo additional tests in the coming days.
"The causes of their deaths are pending ancillary testing; the presence or absence of bacterial meningitis will not be confirmed until those additional test results are final," Lear wrote in the statement.
A third teacher in the school district also died over the weekend, but worked at a different school, Snell said.
Cherry Creek High School freshman baseball coach and Willow Creek Elementary Physical Education teacher Scott Nash passed away over the weekend.
"His death is an unrelated case and is not related to bacterial meningitis," Snell said.
How is meningitis treated?According to the CDC, a vaccine is available to people age 16 through 23.
Meningococcal disease is treated with antibiotics but treatment must start "as soon as possible" to reduce the risk of death, the CDC said. Other treatments include breathing supports, medication to treat low blood pressure, surgery to remove dead tissue and wound care for damaged skin.
For every 100 people who contract meningococcal disease, 10 to 15 will die, according to the CDC. One in 5 people who recover can suffer from long-term disabilities such as loss of limbs, brain damage and deafness.
Natalie Neysa Alund covers breaking and trending news for USA TODAY. Reach her at and follow her on Twitter @nataliealund.
It's Not Just the Discord Leak. Group Chats Are the Internet's New Chaos Machine. - The Atlantic
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 13:31
National-security leaks. Insurrections. Bank runs. Siloed social media is shaping the world.
Illustration by The Atlantic. Source: GettyApril 15, 2023, 7:31 AM ET
In the summer of 2017, an anonymous tipster informed me of a small network of online propagandists orchestrating troll campaigns and creating memes to support Donald Trump. They gathered on Discord, a text-, voice-, and video-chat platform popular with gamers. I signed up and lurked on their server, observing various green-frog and American-flag avatars hurling insults, posting rudimentary Photoshops of Trump, and daydreaming about undertaking outrageous missions such as trying to infiltrate CNN's New York headquarters.
Initially, the posts unnerved me, but there was also something unserious about them'--an oblivious, naive enthusiasm coupled with a grand delusion that their pixelated memes had fully shifted the political landscape. The reason for the bluster was quickly made clear when one of the server's most prolific posters apologetically told his comrades that he'd be stepping away from his duties for the foreseeable future: His parents were sending him off to sleepaway camp. This shadowy den of trolls was little more than a collection of bored, shitposting kids.
I was reminded of my sojourn this week after reports from The Washington Post and The New York Times traced a series of high-profile national-security leaks to a Discord server for gun enthusiasts and gamers that was apparently populated by about two dozen people, most of whom were young men and teenage boys. The classified documents were leaked by the server's unofficial leader, identified by the Times as 21-year-old Jack Teixeira, an airman first class in the Massachusetts Air National Guard. They purportedly reveal information about Ukrainian battlefield positions and infighting among Russian officials, as well as previously unreleased photos of the recently downed Chinese spy balloons.
High-profile intelligence leaks are a feature of the 21st century, but this geopolitical incident has little in common with WikiLeaks or the Snowden NSA revelations. In keeping with the dark absurdity of the internet era, the leak does not seem motivated by righteous or even misguided whistleblowing but by an extremely online man, barely old enough to drink, who was trying to impress his teenage friends in a racistly named group chat. Less John le Carr(C), more 4chan.
Although the Discord leaks are, of course, a national-security story, they're also a story about how information travels in 2023 as the relevance of traditional social media wanes. They are a story about the power, primacy, and unpredictable dynamics of the group chat.
People have been talking over one another online in every conceivable form since the beginnings of the internet. Digital bulletin-board systems'--proto''group chats, you could say'--date back to the 1970s, and SMS-style group chats popped up in WhatsApp and iMessage in 2011. Most social networks now allow users to create multi-person direct messages. But at some point in the late 2010s, as many of us grew exhausted with the process of broadcasting every stray thought to huge, algorithmically sorted audiences, group chats began to take on a new relevance.
Read: Will the 2016 election ever end?
As New York magazine put it in 2019, group chats became ''an outright replacement for the defining mode of social organization of the past decade: the platform-centric, feed-based social network.'' If virality and ad-based platforms felt extractive, the group chat was its opposite: restorative, even sacred. It's a form of communication that often feels like a lifeline to people, and unlike the Facebook feed or Twitter, where posts can be linked to wherever, group chats are a closed system'--a safe and (ideally) private space. What happens in the group chat ought to stay there.
But these small social networks have their own unpredictable social dynamics. In every group chat, no matter the size, participants fall into informal roles. There is usually a leader'--a person whose posting frequency drives the group or sets the agenda. Often, there are lurkers who rarely chime in. Different chats, depending on the size, develop their own sets of social rules and hierarchies. ''The key to every group chat is mutually assured destruction,'' the New York Times reporter Astead Herndon tweeted in 2021. ''If you're the only one dropping tea, you're at risk. [If] one person is a little too silent, they gotta go.'' Larger group chats are not immune to the more toxic dynamics of social media, where competition for attention and herd behavior cause infighting, splintering, and back-channeling.
According to the Post's reporting, Teixeira was fixated on capturing the attention of'--and winning approval from'--his Discord community. ''He got upset'' when people in the chat ignored his long, detailed summaries of classified documents, and he threatened to stop posting altogether, one server member told the newspaper. Eventually, Teixiera started sharing photos of the classified documents with the chat because they were more engaging. As the national-security reporter Spencer Ackerman wrote this week, Teixeira ''didn't leak for patriotism, principle, or even money.'' His motivation was far less aspirational but, as Ackerman notes, it was ''uncomfortably familiar'': He was showing off for the group chat.
Group chats aren't just good for triggering geopolitical crises'--they're also an effective means to start a bank run, as the world learned last month. The investor panic that led to the swift collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in March was effectively caused by runaway group-chat dynamics. ''It wasn't phone calls; it wasn't social media,'' a start-up founder told Bloomberg in March. ''It was private chat rooms and message groups.'' The rumors about SVB's precarious financial position then spilled out into different whisper networks. Investors, armed with what they believed was sensitive inside information, alerted their portfolio companies, and in a matter of hours, the cascade moved from small WhatsApp groups to the private text threads of chief financial officers, and then into massive 1,500-person servers. But thanks to the private nature of the group chats, this information largely stayed out of the public eye. As Bloomberg reported, ''By the time most people figured out that a bank run was a possibility '... it was already well underway.''
It's enough to make one think, as the writer Max Read argued, that ''venture-capitalist group chats are a threat to the global economy.'' Now you might also say they are a threat to national security. As Ackerman suggested this week, Teixiera is unlikely to be the last extremely online person to have a security clearance or be motivated to break the law in order to impress his friends.
This presents a major issue: Unlike traditional social media or even forums and message boards, group chats are nearly impossible to monitor. As law enforcement, journalists, and researchers have learned, trying to track extremist groups such as QAnon or right-wing militias is much harder when they retreat to smaller, private chat apps. Voice-chat apps such as Zello have been a haven for online extremists, who used the closed networks to plan harassment campaigns and violent gatherings such as the January 6 insurrection.
The problems of abuse, context collapse, and networked harassment across traditional social networks at scale are well documented'--as are the challenges in trying to moderate those spaces. But as our digital social lives start to splinter off from feeds and large audiences and into siloed areas, a different kind of unpredictability and chaos awaits. Where social networks create a context collapse'--a process by which information meant for one group moves into unfamiliar networks and is interpreted by outsiders'--group chats seem to be context amplifiers. If the weak ties of social networks lead to volatile interactions among strangers, group chats provide strong relationship dynamics, and create in-jokes and lore. For decades, researchers have warned of the polarizing effects of echo chambers across social networks; group chats realize this dynamic fully.
Weird things happen in echo chambers. Constant reinforcement of beliefs or ideas might lead to group polarization or radicalization. It may trigger irrational herd behavior such as, say, attempting to purchase a copy of the Constitution through a decentralized autonomous organization'--one of the more popular innovations to come from the flawed premise of Web3 that one enthusiast described as ''a group chat with a bank account.'' Obsession with in-group dynamics might cause people to lose touch with the reality outside the walls of a particular community; the private-seeming nature of a closed group might also lull participants into a false sense of security, as it did with Teixiera.
The social-media era might be ending. If so, may it be remembered as a complex, sometimes delightful, occasionally dangerous, almost always fraught experiment in mass connectivity. But the age of the group chat appears to be at least as unpredictable, swapping a very public form of volatility for a more siloed, incalculable version. The arc of the internet is long, but it always bends toward chaos.
Uren in rij voor friet: 'TikTokrijen' leiden tot overlast (C)n zijn goudmijn
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 12:17
Een rij voor een restaurant in Amsterdam NOS Nieuws ' gisteren, 20:11
Een uur in de rij staan voor een frietzaak of koekjeswinkel vanwege een video op TikTok. Het klinkt misschien gek, maar toeristen doen het volop in Amsterdam. Om de rijen in goede banen te leiden, zijn er soms zelfs 'rijmanagers' nodig. De zogenoemde 'TikTokrijen' leiden dus tot overlast, maar zijn tegelijk een goudmijn voor ondernemers.
Dat laatste merkt Paul Roy, eigenaar van een burgerrestaurant in Amsterdam. "TikTok heeft een grote rol gespeeld in ons succes. Natuurlijk focussen we vooral op ons product, maar als we klanten vragen hoe ze bij ons terecht zijn gekomen, is het antwoord vaak TikTok."
De kans op succes via TikTok is inmiddels groter dan via Instagram of Facebook, zegt Nina Idrus, werkzaam bij een marketingbedrijf dat zich specialiseert in het platform voor korte filmpjes, dat van oorsprong Chinees is. Idrus: "In het algoritme van TikTok maakt het niet heel erg uit hoeveel volgers je hebt. Ook met (C)(C)n volger en een goed filmpje kan je viraal gaan."
Geluk of strategie?
Het burgerrestaurant van Roy zet naar eigen zeggen niet bewust in op TikTok. Het zijn vooral klanten die hun ervaringen met zijn hamburgers online zetten. "Voor ons kwam het als een enorme verrassing dat we zo populair werden op TikTok. Wij hebben niemand in dienst om onze sociale media te beheren."
Deze toeristen vertellen waarom ze vanwege TikTok in de rij staan voor friet:
Waarom uren wachten voor een frietje? Omdat het op TikTok stond
Om populair te worden op TikTok is een flinke dosis geluk nodig, bevestigt TikTok-expert Idrus. "Je kunt zelf op TikTok inspelen, maar je kunt ook bekend worden doordat andere mensen over jouw restaurant plaatsen. Dat laatste is vooral mazzel hebben, al helpt het natuurlijk als je eten lekker is en je op een goede locatie zit."
Dat niet iedereen te spreken is over de 'TikTok-rijen' weet Lony Scharenborg, winkelgebiedmanager van de Negen Straatjes in Amsterdam, waar veel van de rijen staan. "Aan de ene kant is het fijn dat sommige zaken succesvol zijn. Aan de andere kant veroorzaakt het veel overlast voor ondernemers in de nabijheid. Het is heel dubbel."
Zo moet een populaire patatzaak beveiligers inzetten en zwerfafval prikken vanwege de dagelijkse lange rijen. Bij een koekjeswinkel zijn er zelfs 'rijmanagers', zegt Scharenborg. Ook voor bewoners zijn de lange rijen soms vervelend. Volgens de gemeente Amsterdam kunnen terrassen soms niet meer worden neergezet, worden er menukaarten versimpeld en wordt er binnen meer wachtruimte gecreerd om de rijen korter te maken.
De gemeente houdt de situatie in de gaten, maar vindt het vooralsnog vooral aan ondernemers om de drukte in goede banen te leiden. Amsterdam wijst er verder op dat niet alleen in de hoofdstad bepaalde plekken meer worden bezocht en gedeeld op sociale media als TikTok, maar dat dit een wereldwijde trend is.
'Angst om iets te missen'
Geregeld staan mensen een uur in de rij voor een broodje, terwijl er om de hoek tal van alternatieven te vinden zijn. "De angst dat je iets mist is, zeker als toerist, erg groot," legt Paul van Lange, hoogleraar psychologie aan de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, uit over dit fenomeen.
"Je bent bijvoorbeeld maar even in Amsterdam. Dan wil je niet thuiskomen en dat iemand tegen je zegt: ik heb deze tent op TikTok gezien, waarom ben jij daar niet geweest?"
Veel likes en lange rijen kunnen dan een teken zijn dat een bepaalde plek de beste is, zegt Cecilia Keuchenius van marktonderzoeksbureau Motivaction. "Zeker als je een stad niet zo goed kent, zijn dit soort signalen des te belangrijker."
En wie eenmaal in de rij staat, vindt het lastig die weer te verlaten. "Je hebt je tijd al ge¯nvesteerd in de rij", verklaart Van Lange. "En het feit dat er mensen achter jou aansluiten, voelt als een extra bevestiging dat het wel erg bijzonder moet zijn."
Anheuser-Busch on Twitter: "" / Twitter
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 03:47
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A wartime NATO struggles to replace its chief '' POLITICO
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 21:37
Press play to listen to this article
Voiced by artificial intelligence.
It's the rumor inflating the Brussels bubble: The EU's top executive, Ursula von der Leyen, could be crossing town to run NATO.
The rationale makes sense. She has a good working relationship with Washington. She is a former defense minister. And as European Commission president, she has experience working with most NATO heads of government. Plus, if chosen, she would become the alliance's first-ever female leader.
The conversation has crested in recent weeks, as people eye current NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg's pending exit at the end of September.
Yet according to those inside NATO and at the Commission, the murmurings are more wish-casting than hints of a pending job switch. There is no evidence von der Leyen is interested in the role, and those in Brussels don't expect her to quit before her first presidential term ends in 2024.
The chatter is similar to the rumblings around Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, a long-serving leader who checks every box but insists he doesn't want the job.
The speculation illustrates how much Russia's invasion of Ukraine has changed NATO '-- and who can lead it. The war has put a new spotlight on the alliance, making the job more politically sensitive and high-profile than in the past. And allies are suddenly much more cautious about who they want on the podium speaking for them.
In short, the chatter seems to be people manifesting their ideal candidates and testing ideas rather than engaging in a real negotiation.
''The more names, the clearer there is no candidate,'' said one senior European diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal alliance dynamics.
A second senior European diplomat agreed: ''There is a lot of backroom gossip,'' this person said, ''but no clear field at this stage.''
The (very) short listThe next NATO chief, officials say, needs to be a European who can work closely with whoever is in the White House.
But that's not all. The next NATO chief needs to be someone who backs Ukraine but is not so hawkish that it spooks countries worried about provoking Russia. And the person has to have stature '-- likely a former head of state or government '-- who can get unanimous support from 31 capitals and, most importantly, the U.S.
There are several obstacles to Usula von der Leyen's candidacy | Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty ImagesThat's not a long list.
Von der Leyen is on it, but there are several obstacles to her candidacy.
The first is simply timing. If Stoltenberg leaves office in the fall as scheduled, his replacement would come into the office a year before von der Leyen's term at the Commission ends in late 2024. She may even seek another five-year term.
''I don't think she will move anywhere before the end of her mandate,'' said one senior Commission official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal matters.
Speculation is rife that the current NATO chief may be asked to stay on, at least for a little while longer, to allow for a candidate such as von der Leyen to come in at a later stage.
''If Stoltenberg is prolonged until next summer, Ursula von der Leyen's candidature would look logical,'' said a third senior European diplomat.
But in an interview with POLITICO last week, Stoltenberg appeared keen to go home. The NATO chief has been in the job for over eight years, the second-longest tenure in the alliance's seven-decade history.
Asked about gossip that he may stay on, the secretary-general shot back sarcastically: ''First of all, there are many more questions in the world that are extremely more important than that.''
''My plan is to go back to Norway,'' he added, ''I have been here for now a long time.''
The alliance is divided on the matter. Some countries '-- particularly those outside the EU '-- would prefer a quick decision to avoid running into the EU's own 2024 elections. The fear, a fourth European diplomat said, is that NATO becomes a ''consolation prize in the broader European politics'' as leaders haggle over who will run the EU's main institutions.
Another challenge for von der Leyen would be Germany's track record on defense spending '-- and her own record as Germany's defense minister.
A decade ago, NATO countries pledged to move toward spending 2 percent of their economic output on defense by 2024. But Germany, despite being Europe's largest economy, has consistently missed the mark, even after announcing a '‚¬100 billion fund last year to modernize its military.
From the German government's perspective, keeping von der Leyen at the helm of the Commission might be a bigger priority than NATO | Kenzo Tribuillard/AFP via Getty ImagesAdditionally, some observers say von der Leyen bears some responsibility for the relatively poor state of Germany's defenses.
From the German government's perspective, keeping von der Leyen at the helm of the Commission might also be a bigger priority than NATO '-- even if she comes from the current center-right opposition. The EU executive is arguably more powerful than the NATO chief within Europe, pushing policies that affect nearly every corner of life.
Predictably, the Commission is officially dismissive of any speculation.
''The president is not a candidate for the job'' of NATO secretary-general, a Commission spokesperson told POLITICO on Monday. ''And she has no comment on the speculation.''
Who else can do it?As with von der Leyen, it is unclear if some other names floated are actually available.
Dutch Prime Minister Rutte has dismissed speculation about a NATO role, telling reporters in January that he wanted to ''leave politics altogether and do something completely different.''
A spokesperson for the prime minister reiterated this week that the his view has not changed.
Insiders, however, say the Dutch leader shouldn't be counted out. In office since 2010, Rutte has significant experience working with leaders across the alliance and promotes a tight transatlantic bond.
The Netherlands is also relatively muscular on defense '-- it has been one of Europe's largest donors to Ukraine '-- but not quite as hawkish as countries on the eastern flank.
''Rutte's name keeps popping up,'' said the second senior European diplomat, ''but no movement on this beyond gossip.''
Others occasionally mentioned as possible candidates are Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Snchez, and to a lesser extent British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, Romanian President Klaus Iohannis and Slovak President Zuzana Čaputov.
But despite the gossip, officials acknowledge many of these names are not politically feasible at this stage.
Kallas, for instance, is perceived as too hawkish. And conversely, Canada and some southern European countries are viewed within the alliance as laggards on defense investment. Then there's the fact that some capitals would oppose a non-EU candidate, complicating a Wallace candidacy.
As a result, a senior figure from a northern or western EU country appears the most likely profile for a successful candidate. Yet for now, who that person would be remains murky. Officials do have a deadline, though: the annual NATO summit in July.
''Either a new secretary general will be announced,'' said a fifth senior European diplomat, ''or the mandate of Jens Stoltenberg will be prolonged.''
'Swap to stop': UK launches scheme to encourage smokers to switch to e-cigarettes | Euronews
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 16:07
The British government is hoping to encourage one million smokers in England to kick the habit under a new scheme that will provide them with free e-cigarettes and behavioural support.
The aim is to make the country smoke-free by 2030, the Department of Health in London announced on Tuesday. 'Smoke-free' is defined as a smoking rate of less than five per cent of the population.
Dubbed 'swap to stop', the programme includes other measures, including financial incentives in the form of vouchers for pregnant women to give up smoking. Almost one in ten women in England still smoke during pregnancy.
The government estimates that the scheme will cost £45 million - or '‚¬51.3 million - over two years.
Westminster wants to leave it up to local authorities to decide who gets the free vapes. They could also supplement the programme with local measures.
"Up to two out of three people who smoke throughout their lives die from it," Health Secretary Neil O'Brien is quoted as saying in a Ministry statement. "Cigarettes are the only product on sale which will kill you if used correctly," he added.
Anti-tobacco organisations, however, say the package of measures is insufficient and say greater efforts are needed if the goal of becoming smoke-free by 2030 is to be achieved.
The switch to e-cigarettes is also controversial. The vapour from e-cigarettes also has addictive potential, critics note. UK government figures for 2021 showed that about nine per cent of schoolchildren between the ages of 11 and 15 used e-cigarettes, up from six per cent in 2018.
Morgan Stanley VP in his 30s identified as man who fell from tower
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 16:06
A Morgan Stanley vice president in his 30s died after falling from a tower in South London last month.
The Southwark coroner's office confirmed that Michel Verlinden died after falling from Aragon Tower on Pepys Estate Deptford at roughly 7.15am on March 16th. The reason for his death is not clear, but police at the time said it was unexpected.
Verlinden had worked for Morgan Stanley for nearly six years and was a quantitative strategist in the eFX business. He joined the bank from JPMorgan in 2017 and previously worked for Deutsche Bank. A mathematics graduate from ETH Zurich, Verlinden was co-president of the ETH alumni group in the UK.
A spokesperson for Morgan Stanley said: ''We are deeply saddened about Michel's passing and our thoughts and condolences are with his family. He was a highly thought of and much liked friend and colleague to all that worked with him.''
Verlinden's colleagues are said to have been shocked by his death.
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Ozempic's Inventor is Race-Grifting to Hook Millions on Taxpayer-Funded 'Anti-Obesity' Drugs.
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 15:59
Novo Nordisk '' the manufacturer of the ''miracle'' weight-loss drug Wegovy (also known as Ozempic) '' is using racial factors to insist on government funding for their drug in the United States. The company is using a network of paid medical affiliates to push pharmaceutical treatment of obesity, including Dr Fatima Cody Stanford, who recently appeared on 60 Minutes to promote the idea that weight loss is unachievable in the traditional manner. The company also appears to be funding pro-Wegovy research articles that contain a racial bent.
Novo is following a similar strategy in other countries, including the United Kingdom, where an Observer investigation revealed the company to be bankrolling National Health Service (NHS) weight-loss services in an effort to boost sales of their drugs. Novo made payments of £21.7 million to UK health organisations and professionals in a period of just three years before the approval of Wegovy under Britain's socialized healthcare system.
Medical professionals closely affiliated to the company have also made media appearances, including on the BBC's flagship Radio 4 Today show, to argue that appetite-suppressing drugs like Wegovy are ''one of the most powerful pharmaceutical tools'' we have to treat obesity.
Although semaglutide '' the pharmaceutical name for the drug '' was originally designed as a treatment for Type 2 diabetes, for which it is marketed as Ozempic, buzz about its weight-loss effects have quickly grown. The drug is injected and works by mimicking a natural gut hormone called GLP-1, which regulates insulin and blood sugar levels. You feel fuller for longer, curbing hunger pangs. If you stop feeling hungry, you stop eating, and if you stop eating, you start losing weight.
By 2020, Wegovy had already been prescribed four million times in the US alone, making it the nation's 129th most commonly prescribed medication. After a shortage of Wegovy in the United States, doctors began prescribing Ozempic, which contains a lower dose of semaglutide, off-label, as a fat-loss treatment. Similar shortages have also been reported elsewhere, including in Australia. In the first nine months of 2022, Novo Nordisk reported a 59 percent growth in sales of its semaglutide drugs. Social media sites, especially TikTok and Instagram, are now awash with videos about semaglutide and its miraculous effects. The hashtag ''#ozempic'' has hundreds of millions of views on TikTok alone.
PHARMA INFLUENCERS. The drug's growing popularity has been massively bolstered by high-profile admissions of its use, including by Elon Musk , who recently debuted a much trimmer-looking physique, and by speculation about which other celebrities have used it. Kim Kardashian is rumored to have used Wegovy to lose enough weight to almost fit into one of Marilyn Monroe's iconic dresses.
The news that Novo Nordisk is using every available means to boost sales of Wegovy will be no surprise to anybody who knows anything about how the pharmaceutical industry works. The fact the company is so brazenly ''playing the race card'' may still come as something of a shock. Pharmaceutical companies are moving with the times, and that includes adapting to the increasingly Critical Race Theory-heavy realm of public discourse, and making ever-greater use of social media to recruit customers.
The National Pulse recently reported on the shady networks of ''patient-influencers'' used by companies like Novo Nordisk to sell drugs without the mediation of a physician. These patient-influencers dispense health advice on platforms like TikTok and Instagram, including recommendations for medication for conditions they claim to suffer from. Many of these individuals are affiliated with drug companies and receive payment for their services.
''The bottom line here is that patient influencers act as a form of interactive direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising, sharing their knowledge and experiences on pharmaceutical drugs with communities of followers in which they wield great influence,'' said Erin Willis , author of a new study on patient-influencers.
''This raises ethical questions that need more investigation.''
DTC advertising allows drug manufacturers to target consumers directly, rather than through physicians. This method of advertising emerged in the 1980s, and is only prevalent in the US and New Zealand. In these countries, about half of all people who ask their doctor about a new drug do so after seeing a television commercial for it.
OBESITY AND RACE. Obesity is one of the main besetting illnesses of modern life in the developed world. A recent study in the Journal of Obesity focused on the long-term weight gain of nearly 15,000 adults in the US, finding that one-fifth of US adults gained 20 percent of their body weight over 10 years.
According to the most recent statistics from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 41.9 percent of adults are now obese, a significant increase from the 30.5 percent who were obese at the turn of the millennium. The prevalence of severe adult obesity has increased to 9.2 percent from 4.7 percent. Nearly 15 million, or 19.7 percent of US children are now obese, and 12.7 percent of 2- to 5-year-olds, 20.7 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds, and 22.2 percent of 12- to 19-year-olds are now obese. The estimated medical cost of obesity in the United States was nearly $173 billion in 2019 .
With such an enormous potential market, it is no wonder that Novo Nordisk is pulling out all the stops to corner as much of the market as possible for its weight-loss drug Wegovy. In particular, Novo wants the U.S. Congress to add coverage of obesity drugs and ''weight-related behavioural therapy'' to Medicare , and is pushing on a variety of different fronts to get this to happen. Novo is the largest industry donor to the Obesity Action Coalition, which is responsible for a variety of advocacy campaigns and works regularly with groups like the National Urban League and The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
''Unfortunately, outdated Medicare rules deny access to the full continuum of care for patients,'' said a Novo spokesman in a statement. ''Novo Nordisk has supported the expansion of Medicare for almost a decade, including support for the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act since its introduction in 2013. Novo Nordisk joined the Obesity Care Advocacy Network in 2015.''
Using a racial angle to approach the issue of public funding to tackle obesity, in consultation with groups like the NAACP, is a smart strategy, and one that other corporations have already used. A former lobbyist at Coca-Cola recently came forward with the claim that the company paid the NAACP to engage in a slander campaign of racism accusations against scientists, researchers and any opponents of Coca-Cola who claimed soft drinks were to blame for obesity.
''Early in my career, I consulted for Coke to ensure sugar taxes failed and soda was included in food stamp funding,'' said the former lobbyist. ''I say Coke's policies are evil because I saw inside the room.''
''The first step in playbook was paying the NAACP and other civil rights groups to call opponents racist. Coke gave millions to the NAACP and the Hispanic Federation '' both directly and through front groups like the American Beverage Association (ABA).''
The NAACP has been claiming that obesity in the US is rooted in systemic racism for decades . The NAACP has openly stated that ''ongoing systems of oppression are at the root of health inequities''. And it certainly is true that racial and ethnic minorities suffer from obesity disproportionately. For instance, 38.9 percent of Hispanic children and 32.5 percent of non-Hispanic black children are either overweight or have obesity, whereas 28.5 percent of non-Hispanic white children are overweight or have obesity.
In a Novo document circulated in February 2021 , entitled ''The Disproportionate Impact of Obesity on Racial and Ethnic Minorities'', the company clearly states that it believes obesity is disproportionately affecting racial and ethnic minorities due to structural inequality. This will become more of a problem for the nation, the document states, since ''minorities will make up more than half of the population of the United States by 2050.''
''Obesity is caused by a combination of genetic, biological, and environmental factors. Access to affordable, healthy food, safe places to exercise and play, stable and affordable housing, and quality health care, all play a role in the likelihood that a person will have obesity.''
The document ends with a recommendation that, ''as policymakers look to address the broader health equity issues in their states, treating and reducing obesity must be a focus.''
Novo has also funded scholarly research claiming that ''structural racism remains a major contributor to health disparities between African American people and the general population, and it limits access to healthy foods, safe spaces to exercise, adequate health insurance, and medication.'' The research recommends increasing access to ''pharmacotherapy'', i.e. weight-loss drugs like Wegovy.
Dr Fatima Cody Stanford made headlines for an appearance on 60 Minutes, discussing the failures of traditional weight-loss strategies, while claiming we should throw willpower ''out the window''.
''The number one cause of obesity is genetics,'' she claimed. ''That means if you are born to parents that have obesity, you have a 50 to 85 percent likelihood of having the disease yourself, even with optimal diet, exercise, sleep management, stress management.'' Her statements were a clear endorsement of pharmaceutical intervention to treat obesity.
Dr. Stanford's ''consulting fees'' for Novo Nordisk and others.What Dr Stanford failed to mention is that she has received tens of thousands of dollars from Novo Nordisk '' that we know about, since payments after 2021 are not yet available to view. Over a third of her registered payments in 2021 came from Novo, and she also received fees from Eli Lilly, which makes a competitor drug to Wegovy that works in a similar manner. Dr Stanford has also argued in speeches and academic work that government funding to treat obesity with drugs like Wegovy is necessary to fight systemic racism.
ANTI-RACISM GRIFT: NOTHING NEW. The anti-racism grift is nothing new. Just look at Black Lives Matter, an organization which claims to have been founded to enrich the lives of ordinary black people, but instead seems only to have enriched a handful of executives . The fact that Novo Nordisk is now hammering systemic racism as a means to fill its coffers with drug money should not surprise us. In 2023, claiming that any form of inequality is somehow rooted in racism is par for the course, and usually successful '' at least if you're arguing in favor of non-whites.
What is especially concerning about the lobbying for Wegovy is that this is a drug that most users will probably have to remain on indefinitely in order to maintain weight loss. We have no idea what the long-term health effects of the drug will be, though we do know users regularly suffer unpleasant gastrointestinal problems including nausea, diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, and heartburn. Rodent studies have shown the drug can cause thyroid tumours , which should at least give us pause before we consider allowing tens of millions of people, including children, to take the drug regularly for years or even decades.
Wegovy is the modern pharmaceutical product par excellence. In a sense it represents everything that is simultaneously wrong and right with the medical industry today. Yes, we have a pioneering application of science that could benefit people's lives, but it does so in an ad-hoc manner, without addressing any of the fundamental underlying causes of the problem itself. Obesity is the besetting disease of industrial society. It is a product of the unprecedented lifestyle and nutrition changes we've undergone over the last century and a half. We've effectively severed the chain of hundreds of thousands, indeed millions of years of human and hominid evolution, reducing our physical activity levels to a mere fraction of what they once were and abandoning the nutrition-dense predominantly animal foods that our ancestors ate and thrived upon.
While factors like genetics and social deprivation are obviously causes of unhealthy lifestyles, the simple truth is that our modern lifestyles are maladaptive. That is why we are so ill. And until we face up to this fundamental fact and abandon ad-hoc responses like anti-depressants and Wegovy, nothing will really change '' except, of course, Novo Nordisk's share price. Which will only continue to increase.
Read more by Raw Egg Nationalist.
ChatGPT Is Consuming a Staggering Amount of Water
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 15:42
Talk about insatiable. Water WarsIt's no secret that training artificial intelligence algorithms requires insane amounts of energy '-- but, as a new paper reveals, it also uses up an absurd amount of water, too.
Researchers from the University of Colorado Riverside and the University of Texas Arlington have shared a yet-to-be-peer-reviewed paper titled "Making AI Less Thirsty" that looks into the environmental impact of AI training, which not only needs copious of electricity but also tons of water to cool the data centers.
When looking into how much water is needed to cool the data processing centers employed by companies like OpenAI and Google, the researchers found that just in training GPT-3 alone, Microsoft, which is partnered with OpenAI, consumed a whopping 185,000 gallons of water '-- which is, per their calculations, equivalent to the amount of water needed to cool a nuclear reactor.
As the paper notes, the water Microsoft used to cool its US-based data centers while training GPT-3 was enough to produce "370 BMW cars or 320 Tesla electric vehicles." If they'd trained the model in the company's data centers in Asia, which are even larger, "these numbers would have been tripled."
Bottle It UpWhat's more: "ChatGPT needs to 'drink' [the equivalent of] a 500 ml bottle of water for a simple conversation of roughly 20-50 questions and answers," the paper notes. "While a 500ml bottle of water might not seem too much, the total combined water footprint for inference is still extremely large, considering ChatGPT's billions of users."
When it comes to suggestions for what to do about this glaring issue in the face of repeated warnings of water shortages, the researchers don't have all that much in the way of advice.
At the very least, companies like Google and OpenAI "can, and also should, take social responsibility and lead by example by addressing their own water footprint," the researchers write '-- a first step in quenching AI's unslakable "thirst."
More on environmental tolls: Mining Crypto Is Even Worse for the Environment Than We Thought
Where Transgender Is No Longer a Diagnosis - Scientific American
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 14:42
At the dawn of 2017 the Danish parliament struck a blow for transgender rights and became the first country to remove trans people's classification as ''mentally ill.'' In this New Year's Day move the government took official action to destigmatize transgender individuals, separating them from any association with words such as ''problem,'' ''disorder'' or dysphoria.
Words matter, says Linda Thor Pedersen of rights organization LGBT Denmark. ''It was very important,'' she says, ''that terms like ''incongruence,'' ''disturbance'' and ''problem'' were left out of the code title used by the country's medical community to track care. The change, she says, ''makes it a code instead of a diagnosis.'' The old system made indirect discrimination possible, she explains; job applications were sometimes rejected because of a ''diagnosis.''
The change, although currently limited to Denmark, represents a new phase in the evolution of views on being transgender. An earlier change occurred in 2013, when ''gender identity disorder'' was dropped from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5), U.S. psychiatry's bible for diagnosing mental illness. A new condition called ''gender dysphoria'' was added to diagnose and treat those transgender individuals who felt distress at the mismatch between their identities and their bodies. The new diagnosis recognized that a mismatch between one's birth gender and identity was not necessarily pathological, notes pediatric endocrinologist Norman Spack, a founder of the gender clinic at Boston Children's Hospital. It shifted the emphasis in treatment from fixing a disorder to resolving distress over the mismatch.*
Spack compares the DSM-5's new definition as similar in effect to its 1973 declassification of homosexuality as a mental illness. University of San Francisco human rights scholar Richard Johnson agrees. Although gay people certainly knew they were not sick, he says, the move did have an effect. ''It has allowed the gay population in the U.S. an opportunity to pursue life on their own terms,'' he says. ''This will also be the same situation for the transgender population living in Denmark.''
As the brand-new measure takes effect, experts are speculating about its political, medical and financial ramifications in Denmark and around the world. Danish politicians had announced last year that they hoped to spur the World Health Organization (WHO) to remove transgender from a category of mental illnesses in its globally used International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, 10th Revision (ICD-10), whose codes are used to mark health records, track epidemiological trends and inform insurance reimbursement. If WHO did not act by January 1, 2017, Denmark had promised to act unilaterally.
As of January 5, WHO had made no comment on the Danish move. In the past the organization had told questioners the transgender redefinition will be part of the ICD-11, an immense and time-consuming project that is expected to be released this year or next.
The Danish action clearly aims to destigmatize being transgender. Removing any association with a problem or syndrome, however, has some experts wondering how it will be possible to label the person's distress and guide treatment when trans people seek medical interventions such as hormone treatment or sex-change surgery.
Psychologist Laura Edwards-Leeper of Pacific University in Oregon notes Denmark will still require that psychological evaluation be conducted before any medical intervention. ''I'm wondering if Denmark plans to make the diagnosis a medical one,'' she says. ''Perhaps they are approaching it similarly to what I recommend, which is to involve health care providers in offering support through the process and with readiness assessments, much like we do for patients seeking other life-changing, body-altering surgeries, such as bariatric surgery or organ transplants.''
''We expect,'' LBGT Denmark's Pedersen says, ''that transgender health care will move more toward informed consent instead of psychiatric evaluations. In Denmark it can take from a couple of years to more than a decade to get permission for genital reassignment surgery.''
A major difference between Denmark and the U.S. is in how medical treatment is financed. What conditions are called can affect that process. ''The difference [between the U.S. and Denmark],'' Spack says, ''is only [that] they have a national health system, and they wanted to make a statement that could not be made here by those who insure the care of transgender people. Because it's conceivable, pending litigation, that insurance companies could persist in not covering the medical and surgical care needed because they don't buy into the necessity of these treatments. But that is all changing,'' he says, ''more bit by bit because we are a hodgepodge of care providers and insurers. Different states have different policies.''
Whatever the practical effect of Denmark's move, Edwards-Leeper says, ''it is sending the message that an increasing number of people across the globe do not perceive transgender people as 'crazy,' but as valuable members of society worthy of respect and human rights like everyone else.''
*Editor's Note (1/11/17): This paragraph was edited after posting. The original stated ''gender identity disorder'' in the DSM-5 was renamed ''gender dysphoria.'' In actuality, DSM-5 dropped the former term describing a pathology, and replaced it with the latter classification, which could be used to diagnose distress caused by gender mismatch.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)Francine Russo is a veteran journalist specializing in social sciences and relationships. She is author of Love after 50: How to Find It, Enjoy It, and Keep It (Simon and Schuster, 2021). Credit: Nick Higgins
New Bombshells Filed in Court in the Jeffrey Epstein/JPMorgan Child Sex Trafficking Case
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 14:19
By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: April 13, 2023
Jeffrey Epstein (left); Jamie Dimon (right).
Jamie Dimon, the Chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase, is desperately attempting to redirect the media's focus to anything other than two federal lawsuits that name his bank as a knowing facilitator and cash conduit for Jeffrey Epstein's child sex trafficking ring. One lawsuit has been filed by the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands where Epstein owned an island-compound and air-lifted young girls in and out. The other lawsuit has been filed by an alleged underage victim of Epstein's, Jane Doe 1.
Dimon's high-powered p.r. machine has been churning out headlines on his role as ''rescuer'' of the teetering bank, First Republic, (never mind that there are few signs that the bank has actually been rescued). And one would think that Dimon has written a new Magna Carta for all the press attention going to his unremarkable annual letter to shareholders.
The latest shiny object misdirection rolled out by Dimon's p.r. flacks was a wide- ranging interview last Thursday between Dimon and CNN's Poppy Harlow, where the breadth of her questions hinted that Dimon was on a par with a head of state, rather than the head of a bank with an unprecedented five criminal felony counts.
After allowing Dimon to opine on everything from Russia's war on Ukraine to the Fed's interest rate policy to affordable housing and inner-city schools, Harlow finally got around to the topic of Epstein. The exchange went as follows:
HARLOW: OK. We have to go pretty soon but I '-- I do want to ask you a few more things. I want to ask you about something that is in the news '-- that JPMorgan is in the news about a former client of yours and that is Jeffery Epstein. JPMorgan is being sued now by the U.S. Virgin Islands. They're alleging that your bank helped facilitate payments to Epstein's victims and benefited from human trafficking while ignoring warnings. Do those allegations have merit?
DIMON: Well, I cannot talk about current litigation except to say that whenever these things come up, we have some of the best lawyers in the world '-- compliance, out of the DOJ, out of SEC, important divisions who review all of these things and make decisions at the time based on what they know, as best as they know.
HARLOW: You're going to be deposed we've learned now in this case in the spring. In retrospect, Jamie, do you think JPMorgan should have acted more quickly after Epstein pleaded guilty to one of these charges in 2008 '-- because he was your client for five more years?
DIMON: Hindsight is a fabulous gift.
It now appears that this exclusive interview airing on an international news outlet might have been motivated by the fact that the U.S. Virgin Islands was planning to drop major new bombshells in court in the Epstein/JPMorgan case '' which it did yesterday.
The overall thrust of the U.S. Virgin Islands case against the bank is presented in the second amended complaint as follows:
'''...based on documents reviewed and interviews conducted by the Government, JP Morgan knowingly facilitated, sustained, and concealed the human trafficking network operated by Jeffrey Epstein from his home and base in the Virgin Islands, and financially benefitted from this participation, directly or indirectly, by failing to comply with federal banking regulations, [redacted]. JP Morgan facilitated and concealed wire and cash transactions that raised suspicion of'--and were in fact part of'--a criminal enterprise whose currency was the sexual servitude of dozens of women and girls in and beyond the Virgin Islands. Human trafficking was the principal business of the accounts Epstein maintained at JP Morgan.
''Upon information and belief, JP Morgan turned a blind eye to evidence of human trafficking over more than a decade because of Epstein's own financial footprint, and because of the deals and clients that Epstein brought and promised to bring to the bank. These decisions were advocated and approved at the senior levels of JP Morgan, including by the former chief executive of its asset management division and investment bank, whose inappropriate relationship with Epstein should have been evident to the bank.''
The second amended complaint by the U.S. Virgin Islands also adds a Fifth Count, charging JPMorgan Chase with obstruction. It reads in part:
''By providing financing for Epstein's sex trafficking organization from at least 2000 through about August 2013, and concealing its actions thereafter, JP Morgan obstructed, interfered with, and prevented the federal government's enforcement of the TVPA [Trafficking Victims Protection Act] against Epstein. To the extent that the federal government was able to ultimately charge Epstein with TVPA violations, the filing of these charges was delayed by JP Morgan's actions. Because of that delay, women and girls in the Virgin Islands were coercively caused to engage in commercial sex acts.''
The newly filed second amended complaint also incorporates information obtained from a deposition of Mary Erdoes, the Chief Executive Officer of JPMorgan Chase's Asset & Wealth Management division and one of the bank's highest ranking women. Much of the new information is stunning in terms of just how much it alleges that the bank knew about Epstein's sex trafficking while it displayed a callous disregard for the underage girls being impacted by its failing to take action. It reads in part:
''In 2006, a JP Morgan Rapid Response Team noted that Epstein 'routinely' made cash withdrawals in amounts from $40,000 to $80,000 several times per month, totaling over $750,000 per year. In addition, Mary Erdoes admitted in her deposition that JP Morgan was aware by 2006 that Epstein was accused of paying cash to have underage girls and young women brought to his home. In the years that followed, JP Morgan employees, including senior executives, emailed internally that Epstein was under investigation or had been sued for trafficking or sexual abuse. This includes an email in 2010 between Mary Erdoes and Jes Staley regarding a federal investigation of Epstein for child trafficking; a 2011 email summarizing a few 2010 news stories connecting Epstein to human trafficking and promising to 'monitor the accounts and cash usage closely going forward;' and a 2011 compliance memo noting that '[n]umerous articles detail various law enforcement agencies investigating Jeffrey Epstein for allegedly participating in child trafficking and molesting underage girls' and that 'Epstein had settled a dozen civil lawsuits out of court from his victims regarding solicitation for an undisclosed amount.' Internal emails also questioned who Epstein's clients were, circulating an article regarding whether Epstein was running a Ponzi scheme.
''Indeed, Epstein's behavior was so widely known at JPMorgan that senior executives joked about Epstein's interest in young girls. In 2008, for example, Mary Erdoes received an email asking her whether Epstein was at an event 'with miley cyrus.' In her deposition, Mary Erdoes testified that JP Morgan terminated Epstein as a customer in 2013 after she became aware that the withdrawals were 'actual cash.' However, Epstein had made substantial cash withdrawals every year he banked with JP Morgan, including more than $800,000 per year in 2004 and 2005.''
There is also this:
''One internal document [obtained from JPMorgan Chase] describes the account of Epstein's 'assistant or young lady he brought over from Prague (or some place like that),' clearly referring to Jane Doe 1. The document describes charges in New York, Palm Beach, and St. Thomas for lingerie and other sexually explicit material. Elsewhere, JP Morgan describes media reports referring to the fact that Epstein purchased her at age 14. She remained a customer of JP Morgan, and Epstein paid her more than $600,000, from his accounts at JP Morgan, including more than $165,000 after Epstein's plea.''
All of this raises the critical question as to why this case has been left to the Attorney General of the U.S. Virgin Islands to bring to the federal court in Manhattan. Where is the highest law enforcement agency in the U.S. '' the criminal division of the U.S. Department of Justice. For the insidious failings of the Department of Justice in the Epstein matter, see our 2019 report here.
For another outrageous case where JPMorgan Chase was wearing blinders for years as one of its largest customers perpetrated one of the largest frauds in U.S. history, see our report: JPMorgan and Madoff Were Facilitating Nesting Dolls-Style Frauds Within Frauds. Two of the bank's five felony counts under the tenure of Dimon stemmed from the Madoff matter.
Ex-Biden official Sam Brinton accepts plea deal in Las Vegas luggage theft
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 13:07
The former Biden administration official accused in two separate stolen-luggage cases in different states was ordered to pay one of their victims back '-- but given no jail time '-- Tuesday after they pleaded no contest to the bizarre theft.
Samuel Brinton, who is nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns, was given a 180-day suspended jail sentence for lifting a woman's suitcase from Las Vegas' Harry Reid International Airport in July 2022, according to court records obtained by Fox 5.
As part of the plea deal, Brinton was charged with a misdemeanor instead of a felony.
A judge ordered them to pay $3,670.74 in restitution for the stolen luggage, which contained pricey jewelry, clothing and makeup.
The 35-year-old was caught on surveillance footage wearing a white T-shirt with a large rainbow-colored atomic nuclear symbol design '-- which Brinton was also caught wearing in an Instagram photo they posted later that day.The 35-year-old was working as the deputy assistant secretary for spent fuel and waste disposition at the Department of Energy's Office of Nuclear Energy when they committed the fashion crime, but has since been fired.
Brinton still faces felony charges in a similar case that alleges they struck again two months after the incident during a trip to Minnesota from Washington, DC.
Samuel Brinton pleaded no contest Tuesday as part of a plea deal in a bizarre stolen-luggage case. LVMPD Brinton was caught on surveillance footage yanking the suitcase from baggage claim. 8NewsNow.comThey were caught on camera yanking a woman's Vera Bradley bag off the baggage carousel at Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport and removing the owner's ID tag before sneaking out, prosecutors allege.
Brinton '-- who was caught using the suitcase on at least two other occasions '-- admitted to investigators that they did grab the bag, but claimed it was an accident and was willing to return it along with its contents, valued at $2,325.
Houston fashion designer Asya Khamsin told The Post in February she believes Brinton may have also been involved in a third luggage-lifting case.
Brinton posted a picture of themself in the shirt to Instagram later the same day. radioactivenerd1/InstagramShe claims she noticed pictures of the White House official wearing her custom-made pieces that were lost at a Washington, DC, airport in 2018, four years before the Nevada and Minnesota cases.
Khamsin, who had traveled to the capital for a fashion show, was forced to withdraw and the garments were never recovered. Brinton has not been charged in that case.
(9) TRADING WITH THE ENEMY - Seymour Hersh
Fri, 14 Apr 2023 13:06
President Biden with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Wednesday, December 21, 2022, in the Oval Office. / Official White House photo.The Ukraine government, headed by Volodymyr Zelensky, has been using American taxpayers' funds to pay dearly for the vitally needed diesel fuel that is keeping the Ukrainian army on the move in its war with Russia. It is unknown how much the Zelensky government is paying per gallon for the fuel, but the Pentagon was paying as much as $400 per gallon to transport gasoline from a port in Pakistan, via truck or parachute, into Afghanistan during the decades-long American war there.
What also is unknown is that Zelensky has been buying the fuel from Russia, the country with which it, and Washington, are at war, and the Ukrainian president and many in his entourage have been skimming untold millions from the American dollars earmarked for diesel fuel payments. One estimate by analysts from the Central Intelligence Agency put the embezzled funds at $400 million last year, at least; another expert compared the level of corruption in Kiev as approaching that of the Afghan war, ''although there will be no professional audit reports emerging from the Ukraine.''
''Zelensky's been buying discount diesel from the Russians,'' one knowledgeable American intelligence official told me. ''And who's paying for the gas and oil? We are. Putin and his oligarchs are making millions'' on it.
Many government ministries in Kiev have been literally ''competing,'' I was told, to set up front companies for export contracts for weapons and ammunition with private arms dealers around the world, all of which provide kickbacks. Many of those companies are in Poland and Czechia, but others are thought to exist in the Persian Gulf and Israel. ''I wouldn't be surprised to learn that there are others in places like the Cayman Islands and Panama, and there are lots of Americans involved,'' an American expert on international trade told me.
The issue of corruption was directly raised with Zelensky in a meeting last January in Kiev with CIA Director William Burns. His message to the Ukrainian president, I was told by an intelligence official with direct knowledge of the meeting, was out of a 1950s mob movie. The senior generals and government officials in Kiev were angry at what they saw as Zelensky's greed, so Burns told the Ukrainian president, because ''he was taking a larger share of the skim money than was going to the generals.''
Burns also presented Zelensky with a list of thirty-five generals and senior officials whose corruption was known to the CIA and others in the American government. Zelensky responded to the American pressure ten days later by publicly dismissing ten of the most ostentatious officials on the list and doing little else. ''The ten he got rid of were brazenly bragging about the money they had'--driving around Kiev in their new Mercedes,'' the intelligence official told me.
VIDEO - (22) Kaitlan Collins on Twitter: "Jamie Dimon, who is set to be deposed over his banks's links to Jeffrey Epstein, to @PoppyHarlowCNN on if JPMorgan should have acted sooner: ''Hindsight is a fabulous gift.''" / Twitter
Sun, 16 Apr 2023 15:07
Kaitlan Collins : Jamie Dimon, who is set to be deposed over his banks's links to Jeffrey Epstein, to @PoppyHarlowCNN on if JPMorgan'...
Fri Apr 07 11:57:52 +0000 2023
VIDEO - Glenn Speaks with Tucker on Media's Shameful Role in Hunting the Ukraine Docs Leaker - YouTube
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VIDEO - Russians send US-supplied 'smart bombs' off line in Ukraine
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 17:36
WASHINGTON '' Despite US officials' public words of confidence about Ukraine's military capabilities, recently leaked Pentagon documents paint a bleaker picture of the state of the war as Kyiv's troops prepare a spring offensive.
''I'm confident that we will meet Ukraine's defense needs through this spring and beyond,'' Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Wednesday as he welcomed Ukraine Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal to the Pentagon. ''And as the president has repeatedly made clear, we will stand by Ukraine for as long as it takes.''
But as Austin pledged to continue ''swiftly deliver[ing] security assistance through procurements and from our own stocks,'' a document posted on Telegram late Tuesday suggests Russia has figured out how to disable one of the most critical capabilities American weapons have to offer: precision.
The document says Russian forces have begun ''jamming'' GPS signals that direct precision-guided munitions to their targets, effectively turning expensive, highly accurate weapons into unguided ''dumb bombs.'' The document is undated but references strikes on Feb. 15 and 21.
''[The military] assesses medium-to-high confidence that 4/9 weapons have missed due to [Russian] GPS jamming effects,'' it says.
Ukraine has been asking the US for fighter jets since the war's early months, but the Biden administration has been hesitant. AP/Iryna Rubakova A house lies in ruins after shelling by Russian troops of the residential area in Chasiv Yar. Ovsiannikova Yuliia/Ukrinform/Abaca/Sipa USASince Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24 last year, the Pentagon has repeatedly criticized the Kremlin for using dumb bombs, at times suggesting its reliance on the unguided munitions meant Moscow's military stocks were running low.
''We have indications that the Russians are in fact dropping some 'dumb munitions' '-- in other words, not precision-guides,'' a senior US defense official told reporters in the war's early weeks. ''It's not totally clear whether that is by design or by default because they are potentially suffering casualties to their precision guided capabilities.''
Meanwhile, the US has highlighted its willingness to send Ukraine expensive, highly precise missiles and rockets '-- with defense officials claiming Kyiv's smaller military benefits from the increased strike accuracy.
That clamor grew louder last summer when the Biden administration agreed to send Ukraine HIMARS truck-mounted rocket systems that launch 500-pound Guided Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (GLMRS) with the ability to strike targets up to 43 miles away.
''It's kind of the equivalent of '... a precision-guided airstrike,'' Undersecretary for Defense for Policy Colin Kahl said in August. ''[HIMARS] have been very effective in hitting things that previously the Ukrainians had difficulty hitting reliably '-- control nodes of sustainment and logistics hubs, key radar systems and other things.''
But the latest document indicates that the US military's Security Assistance Group Ukraine (SAG-U) suspects Russian jamming efforts have disabled even the GMLRS' precision capabilities.
''[Russian] GPS jammers are a high priority for SAG-U and we will continue to advocate/recommend that those jammers are disrupted/destroyed by land [launched] fires to the maximum extent possible before [precision-guided weapon] employments,'' it says.
The document is one of an unknown number that have been leaked online since last month but only came to Austin's attention last week.
The document says Russian forces have begun ''jamming'' GPS signals that direct precision-guided munitions to their targets. Karimov The Pentagon has repeatedly criticized the Kremlin for using dumb bombs. AP/Iryna Rubakova The Pentagon does not yet know the scope of the leak, but The Post has reviewed about two dozen related to the Ukraine war since Friday.
White House spokesperson John Kirby has said it is unclear how many documents were illegally released and admitted Tuesday it was ''difficult to know'' when officials will learn the origin of the documents, saying: ''I think it would be foolish for anybody to guess how long that's gonna take.''
Meanwhile, at the Pentagon Wednesday, Shmyhal renewed Ukraine's request for fighter jets from the US.
''In a modern warfare, air superiority is crucial,'' he said. ''That is why Ukraine is initiating the building of a new so-called fighter jet coalition and we are inviting the United States to become its most important participant.
''America can, once again, demonstrate its leadership by providing Ukraine with F-15 or F-16 aircrafts.''
Ukraine has been asking the US for fighter jets since the war's early months, but the Biden administration has been hesitant to provide such aircraft, citing difficulty training Ukrainians on the Western systems and a need to avoid further provoking Russia.
The request came days after another leaked document revealed Ukraine's frontline air defense forces will be fully exhausted by May 23 without further reinforcement, giving the Russian military an air advantage that they've yet to secure in the 13-month-old war.
Shmyhal also said Wednesday that ''Ukraine still needs intensive military support, more air defense systems that minimize the impact of Russian airstrikes, more heavy artillery, mortars and ammunition for them.''
''We also ask you for reconsider the possibility of providing Ukraine with longer-range missiles.''
Austin did not say publicly Wednesday whether the US would be amenable to the request.
VIDEO - Leaked Docs - What's the Truth? - Larry Johnson - YouTube
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 17:16
VIDEO - U.S. intel agencies may change how they monitor social media, chatrooms after missing leaked U.S. documents for weeks
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 17:10
The Biden administration is looking at expanding how it monitors social media sites and chatrooms after U.S. intelligence agencies failed to spot classified Pentagon documents circulating online for weeks, according to a senior administration official and a congressional official briefed on the matter.
The possible change in the intelligence-gathering process is just one potential shift as officials scramble to determine not only how the documents leaked but also how to prevent another damaging incident.
President Joe Biden and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin were briefed about the disclosure last week, administration officials say, but the secret documents appeared online in early March on the Discord social media app, according to Bellingcat, the open-source investigative group. Some documents may have appeared as early as January, the group said.
The president and other officials were dismayed when they learned the documents had been online for at least a month.
''Nobody is happy about this,'' said the senior administration official.
The administration is now looking at expanding the universe of online sites that intelligence agencies and law enforcement authorities track, the official said.
The secret Pentagon documents appeared in an obscure part of the internet focused on gaming, and some former intelligence officials said it was understandable that U.S. authorities did not spot the disclosure.
The U.S. government may not have been looking there, but cybersecurity experts have long known that Discord has been used by criminals and hackers to spread malware and stealthily transfer stolen information.
''The Discord domain helps attackers disguise the exfiltration of data by making it look like any other traffic coming across the network,'' said a 2021 report by Cisco's Talos cybersecurity team.
The intelligence community is now grappling with how it can scrub platforms like Discord in search of relevant material to avoid a similar leak in the future, said the congressional official.
The disclosure also has raised fresh questions about how sensitive intelligence information is handled inside the government, and whether the pool of people allowed to access it needs to be scaled back.
In the aftermath of the leak, the administration has already tightened access to classified information and is looking at other steps, officials said.
The leaked documents appear to contain ''sensitive and highly classified material'' and pose a potentially serious risk to national security, the Pentagon said on Monday. NBC News obtained more than 50 of the documents, which appear to be briefing slides for the U.S. military's Joint Staff based on information from a range of U.S. intelligence agencies.
The documents include detailed intelligence on Russian tactical moves in the war in Ukraine, descriptions of Ukraine's combat power and weaknesses, alleged sabotage by Ukrainian agents inside Belarus and Russia, and spying reports on allies, including South Korea and Israel. Much of the intelligence reporting in the documents signals intelligence '-- or electronic eavesdropping '-- as the source of the information, a crucial tool for America's spy services.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the CIA, the National Security Agency and the Pentagon have declined to comment on the information contained in the documents.
This intelligence leak doesn't appear, at least so far, to resemble previous incidents that involved double agents handing over information directly to foreign adversaries or self-described whistleblowers providing secret documents to media outlets. Instead, the information appeared in a private online chatroom, not a typically secure location to pass along sensitive material to a spy service, but also not an obvious means to reveal secrets to the world.
Photographs of some of the documents first appeared on Discord app channels focused on the Minecraft computer game and followers of a minor YouTube celebrity, known as wow_mao, according to Bellingcat and other online experts. The photographed documents then eventually made their way to the image board 4Chan, then pro-Russian Telegram channels and Twitter. The New York Times first reported on the documents last week.
If the administration tries to check online chatrooms more closely, it will have to navigate legal safeguards designed to protect Americans' privacy and freedom of expression, former intelligence officials said.
Watching a public chatroom is fair game, but law enforcement agencies don't have the legal authority to monitor a private online chatroom without probable cause, the former officials said.
''We do not have nor do we want a system where the United States government monitors private internet chats,'' said Glenn Gerstell, former general counsel of the National Security Agency from 2015 to 2020.
U.S. laws prohibit searching private chatrooms preemptively and ''scanning for classified documents'' that may or may not be there, Gerstell said.
As a democracy, the U.S. requires law enforcement authorities to balance national security with civil liberties, said James Lewis, a former senior intelligence official and now a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.
''If you don't know there's a crime being committed, you can't just burst into the club,'' Lewis said.
However, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security have come under criticism for how they responded to alarming posts on social media in the run-up to the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol by former President Trump supporters.
The House Jan. 6 committee concluded the FBI and DHS were too cautious about acting on information gleaned from social media out of misplaced concern over potential free speech violations, NBC News previously reported.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner, D-Va., said the leak raised yet more questions about how the government manages its secrets, only months after revelations that successive administrations appeared to have mishandled classified documents.
''We've now got two examples, you know, the potential mishandling of documents by current and former presidents and now this potential leak, or real leak,'' Warner told NBC News in an interview in Harrisonburg, Virginia.
''I think it does raise a question that in some cases we way overclassify. In other cases, we may ... give out the documents to too many people,'' the senator said.
''I think it's time that Congress plays a role here in setting some parameters,'' Warner said.
Ronald Marks, a former CIA officer and a visiting professor at George Mason University, said the pendulum has swung back and forth over the past two decades over how much intelligence should be shared across the government.
''Remember, the whole thing after 9/11 was the need to share. And the concern was that if you kept this stuff too tight, we might miss something,'' Marks said.
''So you get more and more info all the time, which means you've got to store this stuff and collate this stuff, which means that you've got more and more contractors and other people involved with it all the time,'' he said.
A Pentagon team is currently evaluating the potential fallout from the leak. Sen. Warner said ''it's too early to tell'' how much damage may have been caused by the disclosure.
The exposure of so much classified reporting from electronic surveillance could have a devastating impact on the country's intelligence-gathering, according to Gerstell and other former intelligence officials.
''This could be very, very significant in terms of denying us access to information that is strategically important for us, and that would be a bad outcome. Because it would take years for us to recover that kind of access and cost a lot of money,'' he said.
VIDEO - (19) Chief Nerd on Twitter: "ðŸ--¥ Kash Patel Says the Leaked Pentagon Documents Could Be 'One of Joe Biden's Largest Disasters' "They have a monstrous problem now. They have been caught in my opinion lying to the world about what successes, if any
Sat, 15 Apr 2023 17:06
Chief Nerd : ðŸ--¥ Kash Patel Says the Leaked Pentagon Documents Could Be 'One of Joe Biden's Largest Disasters'"They have a monst'...
Sat Apr 15 11:35:57 +0000 2023
David Wright : @TheChiefNerd All lies 🤨
Sat Apr 15 17:00:03 +0000 2023
Hopper : @TheChiefNerd You clowns don't even know what is true in the leaks or even if the copies that have circulated are real or not.
Sat Apr 15 16:58:21 +0000 2023
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Clips & Documents

All Clips
ABC ATM - anchor Andrea Fujii - $29 ham and cheese sandwich (29sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrea Fujii - desantis signs 6 week abortion bill (9sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrea Fujii - robot trashcans (17sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - dime thieves (24sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - nurse shortage (15sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Devin Dwyer - workplace sabbath (1min45sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Em Nguyen - pentagon must do more to protect info (59sec).mp3
ABC WNT - anchor Martha Raddatz (1) pentagon leaker arrested (1min37sec).mp3
ABC WNT - anchor Martha Raddatz (2) teen in discord group with leaker (1min42sec).mp3
ABC WNT - anchor Martha Raddatz (3) why did he access to top secret (23sec).mp3
ABC WNT - anchor Martha Raddatz (4) pentagon reassement of clearance (18sec).mp3
BOTG DC street hat vendor Brandon no Biden.mp3
BRICS currency vs US Dollar - Is the end of Dollar dominance near - Africa News.mp3
Court docs in Bob Lee's killing point to dispute involving suspect's sister.mp3
DW - MIT professor Max Tegmark -1- AI Sudicide Race YES.mp3
DW - MIT professor Max Tegmark -2- Truing test is the main breakthrough.mp3
Former San Francisco fire commissioner victim in brutal pipe beating.mp3
Germany calls on China to use influence with Russia to end war - DW.mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (1) intro -new book on crypto (15sec).mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (2) it will last as long as people believe (1min).mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (3) they are not currencies (1min23sec).mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (4) trustless money (1min35sec).mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (5) crypto currences dont do anything (1min41sec).mp3
HBO Bill Maher - Ben McKenzie (6) oversea exchanges are fake (49sec).mp3
Jesse.Watters.DanaPerino-can we even talk about the documents.mp3
Macron signs controversial pension reform bill into law overnight - F24.mp3
NBC - Jose Diaz-Balart - Josh Lederman - bomb thrown at japanese prime minister.mp3
NBC - Ken Dilanian - new intel leak revelations.mp3
NBC - Miguel Almaguer - bob lee stabbing suspect charged.mp3
NBC - Tom Costelo - concerns about widespread top secret intelligence access.mp3
NBC Hallie Jackson -1-monitoring of chatrooms after leaks.mp3
NBC Hallie Jackson -2- chatrooms private chat privacy issues.mp3
NBC Nightly - anchor Tom Costello - how vulnerable are top secret documents (1min41sec).mp3
New Bombshells Filed in Court in the Jeffrey Epstein-JPMorgan Child Sex Trafficking Case.mp3
Nilay Patel badgers Substack (notes) CEO Chris Best about racism.mp3
Stone of Destiny for coronation.mp3
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