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03 апреля, 09:00

Sexual misconduct by UK university staff is rife, research finds

Forty-one percent of students report incidents ranging from sexualised comments to rape, according to surveyHave you been affected by sexual harassment at university?Sexual misconduct by university staff is rife on campuses, with more than four in 10 students reporting that they have suffered unwelcome advances and assault, including sexualised comments, inappropriate touching and rape, research shows.In a survey of 1,839 current and former students by the National Union of Students (NUS) and campaigners the 1752 Group, to be published on Tuesday, 41% of respondents said they had faced unwelcome sexual advances and innuendo from university staff. Continue reading...

02 апреля, 20:05

Stop Jeremy Corbyn’s mistrial by media over antisemitism | Letters

More than forty senior academics write to condemn what they see as an anti-Corbyn bias in media coverage of the antisemitism debateOne of the main concepts in journalism education is that of framing: the highlighting of particular issues, and the avoidance of others, in order to produce a desired interpretation. We have been reminded of the importance of framing when considering the vast amounts of media coverage of Jeremy Corbyn’s alleged failure to deal with antisemitism inside the Labour party. On Sunday, three national titles led with the story while news bulletins focused on the allegations all last week. Dominant sections of the media have framed the story in such a way as to suggest that antisemitism is a problem mostly to do with Labour and that Corbyn is personally responsible for failing to deal with it. The coverage has relied on a handful of sources such as the Board of Deputies, the Jewish Leadership Council and well-known political opponents of Corbyn himself.Yet where are the Jewish voices who support Corbyn and who welcome his long-established anti-racist record? Where are the pieces that look at the political motivations of some of Corbyn’s most vocal critics? Where is the fuss in your news columns about the rising tide of antisemitism in Europe, such as in Hungary, where the Fidesz government has used antisemitic tropes to bolster its support, or in Poland, where the government is attempting to criminalise revelations about the country’s antisemitic past? Where are the columns condemning the links between Conservative MEPs and rightwing parties across Europe in the European Conservatives and Reformists Group which trade on antisemitism? Continue reading...

02 апреля, 15:29

Celebrities Who Lost Extreme Amounts of Weight in Dangerous Ways

These popular celebrities took weight loss to the extreme. We definitely don't recommend following their diets.

31 марта, 02:51

Operation Teardrop: The Hunt for Nazi Germany's Top Secret Ballistic Missile Submarine

Sebastien Roblin History, Europe Thought to be carrying V-2 ballistic missiles, the U.S. Navy hunted for Attack Group Seewolf, a U-boat wolfpack destined for the U.S. East Coast. In the closing weeks of World War II in Europe, American intelligence determined that a detachment of German submarines had been dispatched to launch a cruise missile attack on the East Coast of the United States. The U.S. Navy deployed forty-six ships and dozens of aircraft to annihilate the incoming submarine wolf pack. The battle that followed saw hundreds of lives lost at sea, and showed American intelligence services at their very best—and worst. Nazi Germany was the first nation to deploy cruise and ballistic missiles in combat. The V1 “Buzz Bomb” could fly more than 180 miles powered by a pulse jet before slamming into its target. The slightly longer-range V-2 could shoot up to fifty-five miles high in its ballistic trajectory before plunging unstoppably towards the ground. Both weapons killed thousands of civilians in London and Western European cities. However, the United States remained far out of reach. Nonetheless, the possibility that the so-called “vengeance weapons” might be mounted on submarines and used to sow chaos along the eastern seaboard of the United States did not escape Allied commanders. After the FBI interrogated a German spy rescued from a destroyed U-Boat, J. Edgar Hoover warned Washington on October 25, 1944, that Germany was planning a submarine-launched buzz bomb attack on the United States. Supposedly, reconnaissance photos depicted what appeared to be launch rails on U-Boats penned in Norway. Two more spies, arrested in December 1944, gave similar accounts of a submarine-launched missile program. In Berlin, minister of war production Albert Speer promised that missiles would fall on New York by February. Recommended: This Is How China Would Invade Taiwan (And How to Stop It). Recommended: The Story of the F-52 Fighter. Recommended: The 5 Biggest Nuclear Bomb Tests (From All 6 Nuclear Powers). Read full article

30 марта, 14:31

The Patriot Missile: The Ultimate Missile Shield (Or the Ultimate Paper Tiger?)

Kyle Mizokami Security, Today Patriot is on the front lines across the world, from South Korea and Taiwan to Turkey, Israel and Yemen.  For nearly forty years, one air-defense system has protected the airspace above U.S. forces. Continuously upgraded since introduction, today the Patriot missile system protects against the full spectrum of flying threats, from ballistic missiles to consumer-grade quadcopter drones. The design of Patriot goes back as far as 1965, when then secretary of defense Robert McNamara authorized development of a new air-defense missile, SAM-D. SAM-D was set to replace the Nike Hercules surface-to-air missile systems and protect against medium- to high-altitude threats. Patriot was intended to be a new-generation system that would incorporate new technologies, including computer control, multiple target engagement, and the ability to operate in an electronic-countermeasures-heavy environment. As ambitious as SAM-D was, it had a lengthy development cycle. In 1973 it was nearly terminated by Secretary of Defense James Schlesinger, who, among other things, believed that a long-range surface-to-air missile was an Air Force responsibility and that the system was overly complicated. By 1975, it had proved its ability to shoot down targets, and around then was renamed MIM-104 Patriot. Patriot stands for Phased Array Tracking Intercept of Target, although it’s unclear what came first—the name or the acronym. Patriot entered low-rate production in 1980, with the missile first fielded in 1985. (This first appeared last year.) Unlike the older Nike Hercules system, Patriot was truck-mounted and mobile. A firing battery could roll into position and be ready to fire in a less than an hour. A battery consisted of a phased array radar set, engagement control station, electric power plant, an antenna mast group, communications relay group, and up to eight launching stations controlling four missiles each. Recommended: The Story of the F-52 Fighter. Recommended: The 5 Biggest Nuclear Bomb Tests (From All 6 Nuclear Powers). Read full article

29 марта, 21:32

RASMUSSEN: Most Voters Aren’t Swayed by Stormy Daniels’ Claims. The latest Rasmussen Reports …

RASMUSSEN: Most Voters Aren’t Swayed by Stormy Daniels’ Claims. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 54% of Likely U.S. Voters closely followed news reports about the Daniels interview, with 21% who followed those reports Very Closely. Forty-five percent (45%) didn’t pay close attention to the “60 Minutes” interview, including another […]

29 марта, 20:10

Russia To Expel 60 US Diplomats, Close US Consulate In St. Petersburg

This is why it's called tit-for-tat. The Kremlin had vowed to retaliate against the "provocative gesture", denying it had any role in the attack; and now it has. Just days after Trump announced he - together with much of the Western world - would expel 60 Russian diplomats from the US, and close the Russian consulate in Seattle, moments ago the Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov said U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman has been summoned to the Foreign Ministry. Huntsman was given notice that Russia is responding quid pro quo to the U.S. decision to order 60 Russian diplomats out. Lavrov said Moscow will also retaliate to the U.S. decision to shut the Russian consulate in Seattle by closing the U.S. consulate in St. Petersburg. Earlier this week, Haaretz reports that the Russian Embassy in the United States tweeted a poll quickly after the U.S. announcement asking which U.S. consulate they should close in retaliation. Forty-seven percent of the responders said the U.S. consulate in St. Petersburg should be closed. However, that is just the response to Washington. In total, dozens more Russian diplomats were expelled from numerous other nations: You will find more infographics at Statista And Lavrov said the same approach will be applied to other nations that expelled Russian diplomats this week.

28 марта, 22:30

Satellite Images Reveal "Massive Show Of Force" By 40 Chinese Warships, Aircraft Carrier

In what Reuters has dubbed a massive "show of force", dozens of Chinese warships have been observed on satellite imagery, exercising with an aircraft carrier and warplanes above the heavily-disputed South China Sea, as part of the previously noted  massive military drills, which the PLA ominously said were "in preparation for war." The four images, provided by Planet Labs for Reuters confirms the Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning joined the annual naval war drill earlier this week. Our Doves caught stunning naval exercises in the open ocean. Read more @reuters and zoom for an enhanced view. https://t.co/7McG2qtNWw pic.twitter.com/FnbNLVN5yk — Planet (@planetlabs) March 27, 2018 According to the Taiwan Defense & National Security ministry, late last week Taiwan sent two ships and military aircraft to shadow the Chinese aircraft carrier group through the narrow Taiwan Strait. The images, taken on Monday by Planet Labs flock of miniature satellites, show at least forty naval vessels, submarines, and aircraft in what some military strategist “described as an unusually large display of the Chinese military’s growing naval might,” said Reuters. Up to forty naval vessels can be seen in a line formation, while submarines flank the aircraft carrier called Liaoning labeled below. Jeffrey Lewis, the director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS), told Reuters: “It is an incredible picture. That is the big news to me. Confirmation that, yes, the carrier participated in the exercise.” Liaoning, a Type 001 aircraft carrier, is the first aircraft carrier commissioned into the People’s Liberation Army Navy Surface Force, a branch of the People’s Liberation Army Navy. Some military strategists believe that China could use the carrier group and its militarized islands to defend its maritime territorial and exclusive economic zone (EEZ), as well as claims in the East China (ECS) and the South China Sea (SCS). Collin Koh, a security expert at Singapore’s S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, told Reuters that the deployment of warships is “unusual for its size and scope.” “Judging by the images, it does seem they are keen to show that elements of the South Sea Fleet are able to routinely join up with the carrier strike group from Dalian in the north,” he said. “It does seem they want to show inter-fleet interoperability – something the (Chinese) navy has been quietly working on for some time.” Koh further said the show of naval force was also accompanied by “destroyers, frigates and submarines” that would normally support a carrier group, the flotilla even included a “large oiler for re-supply as well as smaller corvettes and possibly fast attack catamarans.” “While it highlights an extensive ability to deploy, we are still left to guess at China’s combat readiness,” Koh said.  There are still many unknowns surrounding the final destination and duration of the exercise. Nevertheless, Marine Traffic shows that the drill is being conducted in some of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. The drill comes amid increasing tensions in the South China Sea, with Vietnam, China, Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei, and Taiwan; which all have overlapping claims to the resource-rich waterway. Claims on the South China Sea explained below: What does this all mean? For China to keep peace in the South China Sea, it requires Beijing to conduct continuous large-scale deterrence naval operations in the region. This will be the first of many such "deterrence" ops in which China will parade its massive fleet of warships throughout the heavily contested waters. However, neither Beijing nor Washington want war in the region; at least for the foreseeable future. Still, China’s worst-case scenario, in which someone does take it on its dare, might have been realized with the new addition of President Trump’s new National Security Advisor John Bolton. For that reason, the situation in the South China Sea will continue becoming tenser in the months ahead.

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28 марта, 21:21

Partisan split on climate grows, even as U.S. fears are on the rise, poll finds

Forty-five percent of those surveyed said global warming would pose a serious threat in their lifetimes, the highest level recorded since Gallup first asked in 1997.

28 марта, 16:59

11 Dirty Secrets You Don’t Know About Pawn Shops

Everything you think you know about pawn shops is wrong. Most aren’t sketchy enterprises staffed by con artists dealing in stolen goods.

28 марта, 07:18

My advice for a Paris visit

This is for another friend, here are my pointers: 1. Find a very good food street/corner and take many of your meals there.  I’ve used Rue Daguerre and around Rue des Arts (Left Bank) for this purpose, but there are many others.  Spend most of your money in the cheese shop, asking them to choose for […] The post My advice for a Paris visit appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

27 марта, 22:00

Breaking News, 27th of March, 2018

This morning, residents of the city of Kemerovo made a rally to the building of the regional administration. The protesters demanded that all the regional government must retire at once, and they wanted to know the exact number of victims of fire. Many townspeople do not believe in the official numbers of victims. On top of that - the local people are dissatisfied with the fact that, in their opinion, too few firefighters were involved in extinguishing the fire. "The expulsion of Russian diplomats from the United States and EU countries is a hostile act" - such was the statement of the permanent representative of Russia in the UN Vasily Nebenzia. He added that the USA dared to send out diplomats from the territory that is not under their jurisdiction, by which Vasily meant the 12 diplomats working in the UN. Moscow is currently preparing an official response to this event. The Turkish Armed Forces General Staff reported that as a result of the air strike of the Turkish Air Forces in the Kandil area in northern Iraq - forty-one members of the Kurdistan Workers' Party were neutralized. "Our air forces attacked the objects of members of a separatist terrorist organization, that was preparing attacks on March 22 in the Kandil district of northern Iraq. As a result - 41 terrorists were neutralized," - The Turkish Armed Forces General Staff announced on Twitter. Syrian army is preparing an assault on the city of Duma. The flanking units of the army have finished the redeployment to the outer areas of the city. At the moment, negotiations of freeing the city peacefully are continuing, but the terrorists still reject the proposals of the government. The German Federal Office for Shipping and Hydrography authorized the construction of the Nord Stream-2 gas pipeline in the German exclusive economic zone in the Baltic Sea. The official notification of March 27th states that the agency did not find any obstacles for the pipeline laying on the seabed area of 31 km in length. Russian president Vladimir Putin signed a decree according to which March 28th of 2018 was declared the day of nationwide mourning in Russia, in connection with the tragedy in the city of Kemerovo, which killed 64 people, the Kremlin press service reported. ___________________________ Агентство ANNA-News это волонтерский проект. Волонтеры ANNA-News ведут свои репортажи с мест событий, снимают видеоролики и публикуют аналитические статьи по проблеме национальной безопасности России и ее союзников в современных военно-политических условиях. ANNA-News это самые последние и актуальные новости из районов боевых действий Более подробно на сайте http://anna-news.info Помочь материально: http://anna-news.info/помощь-агентству-anna-news/ Мы в соцсетях: Вконтакте https://vk.com/anna_news Facebooke https://www.facebook.com/newsanna/ Twitter https://twitter.com/annanews_info Instagram https://www.instagram.com/anna_news.info/

27 марта, 12:00

Will Germany Still Belong To Germans In The Near-Future?

Via GEFIRA, The speed with which the German population is shrinking seems to be even too much for the statisticians of Destatis, the official German bureau of statistics, who posit that by 2060, with a zero level of net immigration, the German population will have declined to 60,2 million.  However, our research team has found out that this number is far too optimistic: in 40 years Germany will have a population of 52,6 million people, a considerable 34% drop from the current 81 million inhabitants, and by the end of the century the native German population, the indigenous people without a migration background, will have shrunk even further and be approaching 21,6 million. The explanation that Destatis has mailed us is tantamount to admitting that their projections are unrealistic. If the German elites succeed in maintaining their population at 80 million, in 2060 the majority of naturalized Germans will have no historical relation to the nation’s ancestors who were once proud subjects of the Holy Roman Empire. Moreover, they will stand in the same relation to Albert Schweitzer, Johann Sebastian Bach, Karl Benz and Friedrich Nietzsche as Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stands to the Byzantine emperors. The excessive numbers of migrants will have altered the German nation forever. There will be no relation between future Germans and the German past By 2050 many of the German historical figures, like Albert Schweitzer mentioned above, will be unmasked as racists and consequently removed from street names and history books and replaced with new heroes, a process that is already taking place in the US and the Netherlands. In the former, monuments to southern generals are under attack, whereas in the latter, migrant parties are pressing for Dutch historical figures to be eradicated from public spaces, streets to be renamed and their most important traditions, which are allegedly not inclusive, oppressive or insulting to national, racial or religious minorities to be prohibited. A country’s history should be about the past deeds of its people, but when people are replaced there is no connection with the past and it may happen that before this century is out, the majority of German citizens will have their cultural roots and their ancestors outside Germany or even outside Europe. While one may label these predictions as scaremongering, this does not make them unreliable. Demographic forecasts, granting there are no unpredictable changes like outbreaks of epidemics or famine, are remarkably accurate. Consider the comparison of the results obtained by Destatis and us for the zero-migration model. In Germany, an average woman gives birth to 1.4 children, this is below the replacement fertility level and it has not changed much since the 1970s. This is why the German population began to shrink. The trend has been reversed due to the 1.3 million non EU-immigrants who have arrived in the country since 2015. Cerberus 2.0 computes the future of the German population The Gefira team developed Cerberus 2.0, a software program, to calculate how a population grows or declines in the absence of migration. Using only death and birth rates, Cerberus 2.0 can compute what the size of the German society should be without the influx of foreigners and their offspring. The application begins by doing the calculations on the basis of the 1965 census taken from Destatis. We started with the year 1965 because we wanted to measure the German population growth without immigration, and we assumed that in that year there were not that many immigrants. We did not use the official detailed Destatis data for the subsequent years because these included immigrants i.e. the factor we wanted to exclude. While Destatis gives the total numbers of migrants currently living in Germany, Cerberus 2.0 independently computes the development of each age group of the indigenous German population starting with 1965 and ending in 2100, and for all years in between. We are aware that there are mixed relations and that there are also Germans who have left the country. Because some mixed parents will Germanize their children, while others will do the opposite, we assume that this will not affect our results. Thus, with the aid of Cerberus 2.0 we calculated that if there had been no migration, the German population of 1965 would have been 64,99 million people strong in 2013. This is confirmed by Destatis, which puts the number of Germans without a migration background for the same year at 64.29 million. It shows that our computations are extremely accurate but also that there are hardly any third generation migrants in Germany who are regarded as native Germans. The Destatis demographic model is a mere fantasy We also did the calculation for the years 2013-2060, taking the population of 2013 as a starting point, and compared our results with those forecast by Destatis for the same period. According to Destatis, in 2060 the population will be 60.2, while Cerberus 2.0 predicts only 52,6 million inhabitants in Germany. The enormous difference of nearly 8 million between the two forecasts can only be explained by assuming that Destatis is very creative in their demographic forecasting, as we will explain shortly. For Germany, Cerberus 2.0 processed the death and birth rates provided by Destatis. The demographic data – the percentage of mothers who gave birth, that is the Age-Specific Fertility Rate, and the percentage of people who died – were broken down into age groups. The Age-Specific Fertility Rate for 1965 allowed Cerberus 2.0 to calculate the number of children born in the next year, which is the number of women in a particular age group multiplied by the said rate for the relevant age group. The death rate for the same year was also taken into account. Having calculated the births and deaths, the application increased the ages of each age group by one year to create the entire population of 1966 without the influence of immigration. Then the program began the whole process again to compute the data for the year 1967, the consecutive year, and so on and so forth. For the calculations beyond 2015, Cerberus 2.0 used the age-specific death and fertility rates for 2015. We then compared the Cerberus 2.0 projections with those of Destatis. Both Destatis and our research team began with the initial population of 2013, which was 81 million, and we both used the same fertility rate of 1.4. Neither took into account the 1.3 million non-Western immigrants that entered Germany after 2014. The obtained results differed significantly: Cerberus 2.0 forecast 52,6 whereas Destatis – 60,2 million inhabitants in Germany in 2060. Populations grow and shrink due to only four factors; births, deaths, immigration and emigration. The Cerberus 2.0 zero-migration model only uses the death and birth rates, whereas Destatis adds 600.000 young immigrants and removes 600.000 old emigrants every year from its model. That means that every year 600.000 young men and women arrive in Germany, bear children and when those children come of age the parents leave the country like cuckoos, a rather strange assumption. The consequence is that immigrants themselves do not add to the population, but their children do. In the Destatis model the immigration and emigration balance is kept at zero. How does Destatis arrive at these numbers? In 2014 there were 331 thousand women born. After seven years this same group of women is projected by Destatis to grow to 333 thousand, and after 27 years, in 2041, it is projected to reach a peak of 350 thousand, in other words in 2021 there will be fewer women born than in 2041! How is this possible? Only if immigrant women are included in the statistics. Since in this model there are as many migrants entering the country as leaving it, the first generation migrants do not add to the total population. However, these migrants have on average 170 thousand children annually. These children enlarge the German population, but Destatis does not regard them as foreigners. Hence, the Destatis zero immigration prognosis is false and yields a far too “rosy” projection for the future of Germany. The response from Destatis on the difference between our findings and theirs is that their projection is formally accurate and the difference is a result of the fact that we assumed a zero migration model – no migration at all, whereas they assumed a balance zero migration model. Germany, like most of the West, is subjected to mass immigration on an unprecedented scale, and according to the new German government the process will continue for the foreseeable future. Due to the refugee relocation, the number of the non-EU population increased by 1.3 million between January 2015 and June 2017. The new government has decided that the country should grow by 200 thousand asylum seekers annually. To understand the effect of this policy on German society, one has to compare this number with the number of German newborns. According to Cerberus 2.0, the number of native Germans that are born will decrease from about 450 thousand in 2020 to 315 thousand within the following twenty years. The addition of 200 thousand relatively young asylum seekers year after year, plus their offspring, will alter the German society profoundly within 40 to 60 years and Germany will cease to be a German country. By the end of the century there will be 22 million Germans left The 1965 German population will shrink to 37.8 million within the coming forty years, and to 21,6 million by the end of the century. In 2060, the number of indigenous Germans will amount to half of that of East and West Germany combined in 1945. Given the below-replacement birth rates among the indigenous people, the German governments can only keep the current number of inhabitants at 80 million by importing immigrants, thus in the long run, for all practical purposes, replacing indigenous Germans. The idea that the new arrivals will integrate or assimilate is complete nonsense i.e. the new Germans are not going to be German. The main reason people relocate to Germany is for personal welfare rather than German culture. Immigrants maintain their religion and heritage, form political parties, build religious institutions, have their separate shops and even want to have their own legal system. Given the sheer numbers that are flocking into Germany, there is no way that the Germans can uphold their political structure, language and cultural identity. It takes a long time for a super tanker to change course. Similarly, demographic changes are not visible until after at least 15 to 30 years. Accepting 1.3 million foreigners within two years and adding 200 thousand non-European migrants annually to the rapidly shrinking German population will already have had a devastating effect on the German population by 2030. The results of Cerberus 2.0 show us that the discussion about migration is not about accepting and protecting the right of minorities; rather, it is about an existential question, it is about the preservation of the Germans. When the German ruling elites begin to understand their failing policies, it will be too late. There are no examples in history when these kinds of massive changes have ended well.

27 марта, 03:08

The Indian Air Force's next Super Weapon Could Be the F-35 or F/A-18

Sebastien Roblin Security, Asia But will it happen?  When the Times of India revealed that the Indian air force was revising its single-engine fighter competition to encompass twin-engine jet designs, a collective groan likely rang from New Delhi to Washington—and even Stockholm. The competition was meant to acquire a new generation of short-range jets suitable for defending India’s borders. The Indian air force is gradually retiring its 1950s-era MiG-21 single-engine fighter jets over the next few decades. Currently, it has only thirty-three squadrons of combat aircraft out of a planned forty-four, with ten more squadrons set to retire their aircraft over the coming decade. An analyst quoted by the Times of India characterized India’s Ministry of Defense as “constantly changing their rules, changing their minds” and having a “knack for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.” The exasperation stems from two factors. The first is that the single-engine competition had narrowed down to just two choices, the American F-16 and Swedish JAS 39 Gripen. If the government had simply stuck to the original guidelines, the Indian air force could have begun receiving 115 new fighters by the early 2020s and retained domestic production facilities to build even more if desired. Recommended: We Went Aboard the Most Powerful Aircraft Carrier Ever Built. Recommended: This Is How China Would Invade Taiwan (And How to Stop It). Recommended: The Story of the F-52 Fighter. Read full article

26 марта, 16:29

Flush with cash and popularity, Scott appears ready to challenge Nelson for U.S. Senate

TALLAHASSEE — The much-anticipated clash of Florida political titans will soon be official, as Florida Gov. Rick Scott, the two-term governor flush with cash and popularity, prepares to formalize his 2018 challenge to Bill Nelson, a three-term senator and the only statewide-elected Democrat.For months, both sides have been taking less-than-subtle jabs at each other as battle lines were etched out on the midterm elections landscape in this closely watched race in the nation’s biggest battleground state. National groups from both parties have long been in narrative-setting mode, trying to frame their opponent in the worst possible light as this year’s election cycle begins.“I have a lot of respect for Bill Nelson; he has won statewide races, but he is in the fight of his life here,” said Brian Ballard, a prominent Florida lobbyist and Scott fundraiser. “To me, Rick Scott is the guy I don’t want to face statewide if I’m a Democrat.”On Monday morning, Scott put to bed any lingering doubt about whether he would run when he said he would be making a “major announcement” on April 9. His staff would not elaborate on specifics, but Jackie Schutz Zeckman, Scott’s chief of staff, resigned over the weekend and is being replaced by longtime staffer Brad Piepenbrink. Schutz Zeckman is almost certain to end up on the campaign. She is one of Scott’s most trusted advisers, serving on both his campaigns and at various posts during his eight years in the governor’s mansion.“Most people have assumed he is running, and this has all appearances of getting campaign apparatus ready in time for official announcement,” said lobbyist Bill Rubin, a close Scott ally who served as his policy chief during the governor’s 2014 reelection bid.Scott’s expected decision to enter the race comes at a time when the governor is at his political peak. He has spent most of his time in the governor’s mansion with underwater approval ratings, but his shift from tea party-inspired budget slasher to a more moderate presence focused on spending for education, infrastructure and economic development has moved his approval ratings in a positive direction. Scott last week signed a nearly $90 billion state budget, nearly $20 billion bigger than the $69 billion spending plan he signed in 2011, his first year in office. It’s a direct reflection of both the state’s recovering economy and Scott’s priorities shifting as he morphed from political newcomer to political animal. A Quinnipiac University poll of Florida voters last month showed Scott’s approval rating at 49 percent, the highest mark recorded by the closely followed survey. Forty percent of voters disapproved of the way he was handling his job. Nelson edged out Scott 46 percent to 42 percent in a head-to-head matchup.There were clear signs that Scott world was transitioning to a Senate race. His state-level political committee, Let’s Get to Work, has not received a dime since early January, a very noticeable departure from its normal frenzied fundraising pace. Even with Scott facing term limits, between January and November, the committee averaged $330,000 a month. That money has been spent on polling, advertising, political consulting and research as Scott worked to orchestrate his next political move.Scott’s focus has shifted to New Republican, a federal committee branded as a pro-Donald Trump super PAC. The Scott-chaired committee has been raising money from what are traditional state-level donors, including Doral, Florida-based Comprehensive Care Group ($250,000); The Villages retirement community ($100,000); and James Heavener, the Scott-appointed chairman of the University of Florida board of trustees ($50,000).The messaging war had been in its infancy, but with the prospect of a serious primary challenge for either Scott or Nelson unlikely, both sides will now ramp up their efforts. “Rick Scott’s record is a story of prioritizing his own self-serving politics at Florida’s expense,” said David Bergstein, a spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. “At every turn, he’s abused his position as governor to make himself richer and to help his cronies and donors.”The early hits often foreshadow how groups will try and frame their opponent. For Democrats, it has been to bash Scott for what they see as him helping political allies and how Scott’s single focus on job creation has done little to boost Florida’s rural counties. State economists have reported that many of Florida’s rural counties lost jobs during Scott’s tenure. “During Rick Scott’s time in office, his net worth has gone up by millions while a majority of Florida counties have failed to recover from the recession,” said Joshua Karp, a spokesman for American Bridge, a Washington-based liberal super PAC.Both Karp and Bergstein have their roots in the Florida Democratic Party, an indication that national groups were building midterm elections staffs with an eye toward the Nelson-Scott showdown.Republicans, meanwhile, have been working to tether Nelson to Hillary Clinton, who lost Florida in 2016.“Hillary Clinton, Bill Nelson and the Democratic Party share the same elitist disdain towards the needs of hardworking Floridians,” said Katie Martin, communications director for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, in announcing a new digital ad Monday. “Voters will be reminded that Nelson did everything he could to get Hillary Clinton elected president.”

25 марта, 17:43

A Generation Under Siege

On a cold spring day, hundreds of thousands of adults stood and listened to children—under attack, and unwilling to wait any longer for solutions.

24 марта, 01:25

Raytheon's Laser-Dune-Buggy Blasts Drone-Swarm Out Of The Sky

Earlier this year, Raytheon boasted in a press release about combining a solid-state laser with an advanced variant of the company’s Multi-Spectral Targeting System (MTS) of sensors — mounted on a militarized all-terrain Polaris light-vehicle. The press release describes the vehicle as an “agile, mobile, and effective” war machine to protect troops from weaponized unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) threats. Raytheon said its “engineers and physicists are doing something that has never been done before,” and frankly, the militarized laser dune buggy looks like it is straight out of the Mad Max movies. “Basically, we’re putting a laser on a dune buggy to knock drones out of the sky,” said Dr. Ben Allison, director of Raytheon’s high-energy laser program. “It’s actually a little more complicated than that,” Allison added. Allison’s team has managed to mount a high-energy laser with an advanced variant of Raytheon’s Multi-Spectral Targeting System (MTS), an advanced package of electro-optical/ infrared (EO/IR), laser designation, and laser illumination capabilities integrated into a single sensor onto the bed of a Polaris MRZR. As stated by Allison, the concept of laser blasting drones from the sky with dune buggies was conceived from a meeting with Raytheon’s CEO Chairman Tom Kennedy last year. Kennedy expressed his disbelief to Allison when an allied nation [most likely Israel] used the Patriot missile system to intercept cheap weaponized drones outfitted with grenade-like munitions. Typical quadcopters used by terrorist groups are worth several hundred dollars, while Patriot missiles cost about $2 million per rocket. “That cost-to-kill ratio is high,” explained Allison, “but the threat is clear. So, the question became, ‘What can we do for a counter-UAS system using a high-energy laser, and do it quickly. We didn’t want to go out and do a bunch of research and development. We wanted to take the assets and capabilities Raytheon has today and use them to really affect this asymmetrical threat. We settled on a small system that’s hugely capable.” Here is Raytheon’s Laser Dune Buggy versus a Drone in action:  According to Raytheon’s latest press release, around forty-five unmanned aerial vehicles and drones were blasted out of the sky, downed by the company’s “advanced high-power microwave and laser dune buggy.” The field training exercise known as Maneuver Fires Integrated Experiment was recently conducted at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Raytheon states that high-ranking military and defense industry officials spectated the field training exercise to grasp an understanding of new “ways to bridge the Army’s capability gaps in long-range fires and maneuver short-range air defense.” Highlights from the event include: Raytheon’s high-power microwave system engaged multiple UAV swarms, downing 33 drones, two and three at a time. Raytheon’s high energy laser, or HEL, system identified, tracked, engaged and downed 12 airborne, maneuvering Class I and II UAVs, and destroyed six stationary mortar projectiles. Within the press release, it seems as Raytheon was testing yet another high-energy gun at Fort Still — separate from the laser dune buggy. Raytheon describes the weapon as a “directed energy system emits an adjustable energy beam that, when aimed at airborne targets such as drones, renders them unable to fly.” “The speed and low cost per engagement of directed energy is revolutionary in protecting our troops against drones,” said Dr. Thomas Bussing, Raytheon Advanced Missile Systems vice president. “We have spent decades perfecting the high-power microwave system, which may soon give our military a significant advantage against this proliferating threat.” “Our customer needed a solution, and they needed it fast,” said Dr. Ben Allison, director of Raytheon’s HEL product line. “So, we took what we’ve learned and combined it with combat-proven components to rapidly deliver a small, self-contained and easily deployed counter-UAV system.” Interesting enough, we reported on Tuesday, the Army is scrambling to plug the gap in short-range defenses. In doing so, the Army is testing its Mobile High Energy Lasers (MEHEL) mounted on the M1126 Stryker armoured personnel carriers in Europe. The Stryker-mounted MEHEL is designed for short-range aerial threats, such as weaponized drones. U.S. Soldiers from the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment are now equipped with newly developed laser weapon MEHEL mounted on 8×8 Stryker armoured vehicle. The Stryker with MEHEL 2.0 was presented for the first time on General Dynamics Land Systems booth during the AUSA exhibition in Washington D.C. in October 2016 equipped with a 5kW beam director. The 5 kW laser project is part of the Mobile Experimental High Energy Laser. It represents an advance over a previous laser tested in 2016, and will lead into more powerful, longer ranging anti-drone, anti-missile laser systems. The Stryker-mounted MEHEL has proven to be extremely efficient in eliminating enemy drone targets, and its use in Europe will help the U.S. Army to assess emerging concepts, technologies and interoperability. With millions of commercial and hobby drones buzzing in the skies around the world, it seems like the Pentagon has taken notice of the growing threat that these drones could be soon weaponized. After all, the Pentagon has more than 800 military bases around the world... It is increasingly evident that the United States Department of Defense (DoD) and its allies cannot afford to use a $2 million Patriot missile to blast a $500 drone from the sky. As a result, to lower the cost-to-kill ratio, the Pentagon has decided to start strapping drone-killing lasers to its war machines. As we have said before, you are starting to get the picture of how the next war will be fought... Have you prepared? 

23 марта, 18:15

No longer a mancession: Getting Italian women out to work

Alessia Forti, OECD Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs When the global economic crisis bit deep after 2008, so many men fell out of work in the OECD area that the data pointed to a so-called mancession. Italy was no exception, and indeed there was even some hope expressed there that the recession might […]

23 марта, 17:14

The World Should Take China's War Threats Seriously

Gordon G. Chang Security, Asia The risk the world faces is the one Xi has promised: a Chinese takeover of Taiwan. Taiwan’s national-security and counterespionage chief, in a question-and-answer period at the national legislature, this week warned that China might invade the island republic. “Beijing is prepared to retaliate forcibly once senior U.S. officials touch down on the island,” the National Security Bureau’s Director-General Peng Sheng-chu said, referring to visits encouraged by the Taiwan Travel Act, which recently became U.S. law. Peng’s warning came at about the same time Taiwan’s defense ministry reported that its ships and planes tailed China’s only operational aircraft carrier and its escorts as they transited the Taiwan Strait. The Liaoning group, the ministry announced Wednesday, left Taiwan’s air-defense identification zone on a southwesterly course. The transit comes at a time of growing tension over the island republic that China claims as its thirty-fourth province. In recent days, Beijing has repeatedly threatened war. The People’s Republic of China is not the Third Reich, but the world is nonetheless approaching a 1939 moment in East Asia. Xi Jinping, newly armed with a second term as China’s president, is now full of fire and fury. During his address at the close of the annual session of the National People’s Congress on Tuesday, he promised “full unification of the motherland.” That’s code for annexation of Taiwan, large portions of India, dozens of Japanese islands, a speck of South Korea, Philippine rocks and reefs, and almost all the waters of the South China Sea. Xi’s speech, which ran about forty minutes, contained ominous comments. “We are resolved to fight the bloody battle against our enemies,” he said, “with a strong determination to take our place in the world.” The words of the Chinese leader are frightening. As no national leader has been talking about waging war on China, Xi’s reference to blood is a sign he is thirsting for war. And because he promised to take territory under the control of other states, he, in unmistakable tones, threatened acts of aggression. Read full article

22 марта, 19:01

African nations sign up to free trade area

FORTY-FOUR African countries have signed a pact setting up the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) in Kigali, capital city of Rwanda. The signing took place on Wednesday during the 10th Extraordinary

25 апреля 2016, 04:15

Банковская мафия рубит концы. Чего то опасаются...

В Европе уничтожают банкиров целыми семьямиВ Западной Европе продолжается череда таинственных убийств высокопоставленных банкиров. Их убивают нарочито жестоко вместе с детьми и женами. С января этого года было убито уже 14 топ-менеджеров ведущих банков, ни одно из преступлений не было раскрыто. Такими темпами, банкиры по примеру Депардье вскоре начнут просить политубежище в России.В пятницу, 18 апреля, стало известно, что в бельгийском городе Визе был убит 37-летний директор BNP Paribas Fortis вместе со своей супругой и девятилетним племянником в результате стрельбы из проезжающего мимо них автомобиля. Согласно заявлениям мэра Визе Марселю Невену, ничто не может объяснить, что вызвало жестокую стрельбу поздней ночью 18 апреля. До сих пор не найдены ни убийца, ни внятный мотив для совершения этого преступления.Ранее финансовый мир был озабочен загадочным убийством бывшего генерального директора ABN Amro и членов его семьи, позже стало известно о гибели главы Bank Frick & Co. Юргена Фрика в Лихтенштейне.Всего, не считая последнего убийства, начиная с январе в Европе и США погибло уже 13 банкиров.Часть смертей полиция классифицирует как самоубийства, а некоторые называют необъяснимыми или просто отказывается раскрывать подробности, что только усиливает подозрения в умышленных убийствах.№1. УИЛЬЯМ БРОКСМИТ58-летний бывший топ-менеджер Deutsche Bank был найден мертвым в своем доме в центре Лондона 26 января. Полиция классифицирует эту смерть как самоубийство.№2. КАРЛ СЛИМ51-летний управляющий директор Tata Motors был найден мертвым на четвертом этаже отеля Shangri-La в Бангкоке 27 января.№3. ГАБРИЭЛЬ МАГИ39 -летний сотрудник JP Morgan умер после падения с крыши европейской штаб-квартиры JP Morgan в Лондоне 27 января.№4. МАЙК ДЮКЕР50-летний главный экономист инвестиционного банка США был найден мертвым недалеко от Такомского моста в штате Вашингтон.№5. РИЧАРД ТЭЛЛИ57-летний основатель Title Services был найден мертвым в начале этого месяца. Судя по всему, он сам выстрелил в себя из ружья.№6. ТИМ ДИКИНСОНДиректор по коммуникациям британской Swiss Re AG также умер в прошлом месяце, однако обстоятельства его смерти до сих пор неизвестны.№7. РАЙАН ГЕНРИ КРЕЙН37-летний топ-менеджер JP Morgan умер несколько недель назад . Подробностей трагедии нет, в качестве причины называется самоубийство. О его смерти свидетельствует лишь небольшой некролог в Stamford Daily Voice.№8. ЛИ ДЖУНДЖИ33-летний банкир из Гонконга покончил с собой, спрыгнув с крыши штаб-квартиры JP Morgan в Гонконге на этой неделе.№9. ДЖЕЙМС СТЮАРТБывший генеральный директор National Bank of Commerce найден мертвым в Скоттдейл, штат Аризона, утром 19 февраля. Представитель семьи отказался называть причину смерти.№10. ЭДМУНД РЕЙЛИ47-летний трейдер Midtown’s Vertical Group совершил самоубийство, прыгнув под поезд.№11. КЕННЕТ БЕЛЛАНДО28-летний трейдер Levy Capital, ранее работающий инвестиционно-банковским аналитиком в JPMorgan, выпрыгнул из окна своей квартиры.№12. ЯН ПЕТЕР ШМИТТМАНН57-летний бывший главный исполнительный директор банка ABN Amro Group найден мертвым у себя дома недалеко от Амстердама вместе с женой и дочерью.№13. ЮРГЕН ФРИК48-летний бывший генеральный директор Bank Frick & Co. был застрелен в подземном гараже одной из финансовых компаний в Лихтенштейне.