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Articles Posted by oblomov

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  • Google Conducting Broad Investigation of Russian Influence

    09/29/2017 4:18:25 PM PDT · by oblomov · 79 replies
    WSJ ^ | 29 Sep 2017 | Jack Nicas and Robert McMillan
    Google is conducting a broad internal investigation to determine whether Russian-linked entities used its ads or services to try to manipulate voters ahead of the U.S. election, according to a person familiar with the matter, a move that comes after Facebook and Twitter said Russian actors used their sites. Google, part of Alphabet, is also talking with congressional officials who are investigating Russian efforts to influence the election, and plans to share its findings with them once completed, this person said. Congressional leaders have scrutinized Facebook and Twitter this month for Russian activity on their sites—and criticized the tech companies...
  • Disappointing victory for Angela Merkel as CDU sinks, nationalist AfD surges

    09/24/2017 8:22:07 PM PDT · by oblomov · 65 replies
    Deutsche Welle ^ | 25 Sep 2017 | Elizabeth Schumacher
    Angela Merkel has won a fourth term, but official results have shown she'll have a "tough road" for coalition talks. While the CDU remains the largest party, the far-right AfD will be the third biggest political force. With all 299 constituencies reporting, Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and its Bavarian sister party the CSU came out ahead in Germany's national election on Sunday, with 33 percent of the vote. Rival Social Democrats (SPD) led by Martin Schulz tumbled to a mere 20.5 percent, while the Green and Left parties remained about the same as they did in 2013,...
  • The Libertarianism-to-Fascism Pipeline [NR acid reflux alert]

    08/24/2017 2:20:00 PM PDT · by oblomov · 27 replies
    National Review ^ | 24 August 2017 | Michael Brendan Dougherty
    n 2002, I got it into my head that I wanted to attend what was then described as the “Old Latin Mass.” I had been reading in the dingy corners of the Internet, which is always dangerous, and these Latin Mass people seemed able to explain some of the gap between the grand ideas I was studying in a medieval-theology class at my college and the worship at most Catholic parishes, which, to me, seemed little different from the Lutheran services I’d seen as a teenager. One Sunday morning I got in my car, and life has never been the...
  • Imposter Mayor

    07/09/2017 11:45:47 AM PDT · by oblomov · 18 replies
    City Journal ^ | 7 Jul 2017 | Seth Barron
    Mayor de Blasio made a surprise departure from New York City yesterday—just one day after the assassination of NYPD officer Miosotis Familia while she guarded a violence-plagued Bronx corner—in order to attend anti-capitalist protests in Hamburg, site of the G-20 summit. A few hours after de Blasio’s plane departed, a train derailed in Penn Station, where extensive track work is scheduled to begin this weekend. It was the third derailment at Penn since March; the incidents have become so commonplace that New Jersey Transit commuters reportedly showed little surprise when their train car slid off the track. The mayor has...
  • Conservatives Go Third ‘I’ Blind

    07/06/2017 9:10:04 AM PDT · by oblomov · 35 replies
    NY Times ^ | 6 Jul 2017 | Bret Stephens
    On the subject of cycles, Warren Buffett likes to talk about “the natural progression, the three I’s.” As he put it to Charlie Rose in 2008, those I’s are “the innovators, the imitators and the idiots.” One creates, one enhances — and one screws it all up. Then, presumably, the cycle starts afresh. Buffett was describing the process that led to the 2008 housing and financial crises. But he might as well have been talking about the decline of the conservative movement in America. I was reminded of this again last week, on news that the Fox News host Sean...
  • IMF Working Paper: The Macroeconomics of De-Cashing

    04/08/2017 7:43:04 AM PDT · by oblomov · 17 replies
    International Monetary Fund ^ | March 2017 | Alexei Kireyev
    I. INTRODUCTION 1. De-cashing is defined as the gradual phasing out of currency from circulation and its replacement with convertible deposits. This initiative does not in any way target the abolition of money as an institution, but is, rather, a sweeping reduction of the role of currency, its cash component, in favor of transferrable deposits, its non-cash component. The monetary authorities in many countries have already taken steps towards de-cashing. These steps include abolishing large denomination bills, imposing ceilings on cash transactions, introducing declaration requirements on the carriage of cash in and out of the country, reporting requirements for cash...
  • Dr. Rand Paul Comments on the U.S. House Rejecting ‘Obamacare Lite’

    03/25/2017 4:38:50 AM PDT · by oblomov · 68 replies
    Senator Rand Paul ^ | 24 March 2017 | Rand Paul
    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator and physician Rand Paul released the following statement after U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the American Health Care Act from a floor vote for the second day in a row: “I applaud House conservatives for keeping their word to the American people and standing up against Obamacare Lite,” said Dr. Paul. “I look forward to passing full repeal of Obamacare in the very near future.” Earlier this month, Dr. Paul introduced the Obamacare Repeal Act (S. 554), which is the same legislation, with an updated timeline, to repeal major components of Obamacare that...
  • A Disastrous Day for Trump [Nevertrump barf alert]

    01/29/2017 7:46:09 PM PST · by oblomov · 50 replies
    Commentary ^ | 29 Jan 2017 | Noah Rothman
    Maybe the most pernicious myth in American politics is also among the most cherished. It is the faith-based conviction that the federal government can be run like a business, and it would be if we only had leaders with the fortitude to make enemies of the corrupt careerists who thwart this common sense idea. We are in the earliest days of a grand experiment to test the validity of the notion that the businessman’s dispassionate acumen can transform our sclerotic federal government into something with private sector efficiency. So far, it’s not going well. On Saturday, Donald Trump revealed once...
  • Vanishing point: the rise of the invisible computer

    01/29/2017 12:45:19 PM PST · by oblomov · 57 replies
    The Grauniad ^ | 26 Jan 2017 | Tim Cross
    n 1971, Intel, then an obscure firm in what would only later come to be known as Silicon Valley, released a chip called the 4004. It was the world’s first commercially available microprocessor, which meant it sported all the electronic circuits necessary for advanced number-crunching in a single, tiny package. It was a marvel of its time, built from 2,300 tiny transistors, each around 10,000 nanometres (or billionths of a metre) across – about the size of a red blood cell. A transistor is an electronic switch that, by flipping between “on” and “off”, provides a physical representation of the...
  • Joe Biden warns that the progressive democratic world order is at risk of collapse [tr]

    01/18/2017 5:38:18 AM PST · by oblomov · 65 replies
    CNBC ^ | 18 Jan 2017 | Jay Yarrow
    Vice President Joe Biden delivered an epic final speech Wednesday to the elites at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The gist of his speech was simple: At a time of "uncertainty" we must double down on the values that made Western democracies great, and not allow the "liberal world order" to be torn apart by destructive forces. Biden went after Russian President Vladimir Putin by name, saying he is using "every tool" in his power to whittle away the European project, and undermine Western democracies. Biden accused Putin of wanting to "roll back decades of progress." Biden said...
  • Trump goes after civil-rights icon on Twitter

    01/14/2017 9:53:02 AM PST · by oblomov · 80 replies
    NY Post ^ | 14 Jan 2017 | Kathianne Boniello
    President-elect Trump slammed US Rep. John Lewis on Twitter Saturday, for “falsely complaining” about the election, and said he should spend more time fixing problems in his district. Lewis, a Georgia democrat and legendary civil rights activist, intends to skip Trump’s Friday inauguration and feels the Tweeter-in-Chief isn’t a “legitimate president,” he told NBC News’ “Meet the Press.” Trump shot back at Lewis with a pair of tweets, the first at 7:50 a.m., the second at 8:07 a.m. “Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not...
  • Inequality and Skin in the Game

    01/14/2017 3:03:02 AM PST · by oblomov · 14 replies
    Medium ^ | 27 Dec 2016 | Nassim N. Taleb
    There is inequality and inequality. The first is the inequality people tolerate, such as one’s understanding compared to that of people deemed heroes, say Einstein, Michelangelo, or the recluse mathematician Grisha Perelman, in comparison to whom one has no difficulty acknowledging a large surplus. This applies to entrepreneurs, artists, soldiers, heroes, the singer Bob Dylan, Socrates, the current local celebrity chef, some Roman Emperor of good repute, say Marcus Aurelius; in short those for whom one can naturally be a “fan”. You may like to imitate them, you may aspire to be like them; but you don’t resent them. The...
  • Philly Mayor Blames ‘Price Gouging’ for Outrage Generated by City’s New Soda Tax

    01/13/2017 12:39:16 PM PST · by oblomov · 60 replies
    Reason ^ | 11 Jan 2017 | Eric Boehm
    After driving up the cost of soda and other sugary drinks with a new tax, the mayor of Philadelphia is now trying to blame businesses for charging higher prices (and for the outrage those prices have generated). Mayor Jim Kenney, who proposed the soda tax and championed its passage through city council last year, told reporters on Tuesday it's not the new 1.5-cents-per-ounce tax that's making it more expensive to buy a can of Coke in Philly. No, according to the mayor, those higher prices are caused by city businesses price gouging their customers in order to stir up opposition...
  • We Are Not the World

    01/07/2017 10:16:34 AM PST · by oblomov · 5 replies
    WSJ ^ | 6 Jan 2017 | Greg Ip
    Late on a Sunday evening a little more than a year ago, Marine Le Pen took the stage in a depressed working-class town in northern France. She had just lost an election for the region’s top office, but the leader of France’s anti-immigrant, anti-euro National Front did not deliver a concession speech. Instead, Ms. Le Pen proclaimed a new ideological struggle. “Now, the dividing line is not between left and right but globalists and patriots,” she declared, with a gigantic French flag draped behind her. Globalists, she charged, want France to be subsumed in a vast, world-encircling “magma.” She and...
  • Greece Unleashes 'Soft' Cash Ban

    01/03/2017 10:18:52 AM PST · by oblomov · 18 replies
    ZeroHedge ^ | 03 Jan 2017 | Tyler Durden
    The spread of global cash bans continues with Greece unveiling their so-called 'soft' approach by which taxpayers will only be granted tax-allowances or deductions when payments are made via credit or debit cards. As KeepTalkingGreeece reports, the new guidelines refer to employees, pensioners, farmers, and also the unemployed. Accepted expenditure will be: purchases for food and supermarket products, electronic and electric devices, household equipment, footwear, clothing, fuel, furniture, cigarettes, drinks Restaurants, cafeterias,bars and hotels Services like by hairdressers and beauty parlors, gyms and dance schools, car repair, plumbers, electricians, painters, carpenters, lawyers and accountants. For doctors and pharmacy the same...
  • A well-kept open secret: Washington is behind India’s brutal experiment of abolishing most cash

    01/02/2017 7:10:24 PM PST · by oblomov · 62 replies
    Money and More ^ | 01 Jan 2017 | Norbert Häring
    In early November, without warning, the Indian government declared the two largest denomination bills invalid, abolishing over 80 percent of circulating cash by value. Amidst all the commotion and outrage this caused, nobody seems to have taken note of the decisive role that Washington played in this. That is surprising, as Washington's role has been disguised only very superficially. weiterlesen US-President Barack Obama has declared the strategic partnership with India a priority of his foreign policy. China needs to be reined in. In the context of this partnership, the US government’s development agency USAID has negotiated cooperation agreements with the...
  • Bitcoin surpasses $800 for the first time in 3 years

    12/21/2016 9:39:45 AM PST · by oblomov · 29 replies
    MArketwatch ^ | 21 Dec 2016 | Joseph Adinolfi
    The price of a single bitcoin touched a fresh three-year high on Wednesday with U.S. and European buyers accounting for the bulk of trading volume. Bitcoin prices have been rising steadily this year, but accelerated after the U.S. election results sent the U.S. dollar flying. Chinese traders were big bitcoin buyers, seeking protection from the rapid depreciation of the Chinese yuan, also known as the renminbi, which has weakened as the U.S. dollar has strengthened. Traders in the West have also contributed to the digital currency’s rise, using it as a hedge against the political and economic implications of President-elect...
  • Senate Clears Bill to Ease FDA Drug and Device Approvals

    12/07/2016 2:50:18 PM PST · by oblomov · 11 replies
    7 Dec 2016 ^ | Thomas M. Burton
    WASHINGTON—Passage of legislation aimed at speeding up Food and Drug Administration approvals, combined with an incoming president who has pledged to “cut red tape” at the agency, is expected to usher in a new, more industry-friendly era of drug and device regulation. The Senate on Wednesday cleared the measure known as the 21st Century Cures bill, which lays out in detail speedier and more pro-industry methods for the FDA to approve new drugs and medical devices. Its supporters, such as PhRMA, the drug-industry association, and AdvaMed, representing device makers, praise it as a way to bring about more innovation and...
  • Venezuela’s Nemesis Is a Hardware Salesman at a Home Depot in Alabama

    11/22/2016 2:19:30 PM PST · by oblomov · 29 replies
    WSJ ^ | 20 Nov 2016 | ANATOLY KURMANAEV
    HOOVER, Ala.—Public Enemy No. 1 of Venezuela’s revolutionary government is Gustavo Díaz, a Home Depot Inc. employee in central Alabama. On his lunch breaks from the hardware section, Mr. Díaz, 60 years old, does more than anyone else to set the price of everything from rice to aspirin to cars in his native Venezuela, influencing the inflation rate and swaying millions of dollars of daily currency transactions. How? He is president of one of Venezuela’s most popular and insurgent websites, DolarToday.com, which provides a benchmark exchange rate used by his compatriots to buy and sell black-market dollars. That allows them...
  • There Is No Violent Hate-Crimewave in 'Trump's America'

    11/13/2016 5:21:43 AM PST · by oblomov · 37 replies
    Reason ^ | 11 Nov 2016 | Elizabeth Nolan Brown
    Let's get this out of the way: there's no doubt that Donald Trump's policies may pose a direct threat to certain classes of American people. But in the wake of his Tuesday night election as president of the United States, there has been a wave of people worrying for the physical safety of Mexicans, Muslims, and anyone else who isn't white, male, and gender-conforming. The fear seems to legitimately be that there are would-be perpetrators of sexual assault and race-based violence that have been well-behaved so far but will now, emboldened by a President-elect Trump, suddenly go wild with the...