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Friday, 21 February 2014

Feb 20, 2014: News Updates

Pope briefed on Vatican bank as he mulls its future

February 19, 2014, 1:32 am
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - A commission looking into the Vatican bank briefed Pope Francis and top cardinals on its findings on Tuesday ahead of a papal decision about what to do with the institution that has embarrassed the Holy See for decades.
...The pope has not ruled out closing the bank altogether if it cannot be reformed and has said he wants the Vatican to adhere to international standards of financial transparency.

Venezuela's President Maduro accuses Obama of fanning violence

Published time: February 20, 2014 21:26
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has accused President Obama of promoting the ongoing protests in the country, and of backing members of the opposition alleged to be behind violence.

Embattled Ukraine: Kiev’s vicious cycle of violence rages on LIVE UPDATES

Published time: February 18, 2014 15:03
Edited time: February 20, 2014 20:01

At least 75 people have died in the street violence, as the broken truce between the government and the opposition has turned the Ukrainian capital into bloody turmoil.
Thursday, February 20-21:49 GMT:
Rioters stormed the Party of Regions office in Vinnitsa, located in central Ukraine. They stole and burned all of the party’s symbols.

West sanctions on Kiev blackmail: Russia

Thu Feb 20, 2014 4:27PM GMT
Russia has said the threat of sanctions against Ukraine is an attempt to blackmail Kiev by the West, accusing Ukrainian opposition hardliners of seeking a civil war.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Banks Are Obsolete: The Entire Parasitic Sector Can Be Eliminated

What else can we do with the $1.25 trillion we'll save by eliminating these obsolete financial middleman parasites? A lot.
Technology has leapfrogged the banking sector, rendering it as obsolete as buggy whips. So why are we devoting 9% of our economy to an obsolete parasite?Financial sector profits now total a staggering 4.5% of GDP (gross domestic product), while the expenses generated by financial churning account for another 4.5% of the economy.

Debt adjusted: EU rebrands bankruptcy

Published time: February 20, 2014 13:58
Even by the acute standards of Euro-buffoonery, a new report beggars belief as the EU seeks to offend nobody but, as always, ends up running from reality.
The terrifying point about EU policy is how often some tiny kernel of idiocy can be written in a report and then find itself doing the equivalent of going viral amongst the Brussels bureaucrats prior to developing into yet another law to add to the burden of paperwork which strangles enterprise throughout the 28 nation, er, free trade zone. The EU is increasingly bound together by red tape as opposed to being free to trade with the much more competitive economies of Asia and elsewhere.

The UK's 2-Tier Economy - London (And Everyone Else)

London’s economy may be decoupling from the rest of the U.K. at an accelerating pace. As Bloomberg's Niraj Shah explains, the capital’s contribution to U.K. output, house prices and financial jobs are all at a record high while the suicide rate is at a series low... while the rest of the nation is 'not'.

 Treasury 30-Year TIPS Auction Attracts Weakest Demand Since 2001

By Cordell Eddings Feb 20, 2014 11:10 PM GMT+0100
The U.S. sale of $9 billion in 30-year Treasury Inflation Protected Securities drew the weakest demand in a dozen years amid stagnant inflation and as the Federal Reserve reduces its bond purchases.

NSA's Spying Program Set To Become Even Bigger

In the aftermath of the Snowden revelations about the NSA's ubiquitous presence in everyday lives, and unconstitutional interception, eavesdropping and recording of every form of electronic communication, the logical assumption would be that the next step for the NSA would be its reduction instead of expansion, especially following the president's heartfelt reading from the TOTUS several months ago in which he promised to do all he could, to curb the spy agency. "Surprisingly" expansion is precisely what will happen to the NSA - as WSJ reports the "government is considering enlarging the National Security Agency's controversial collection of Americans' phone records—an unintended consequence of lawsuits seeking to stop the surveillance program, according to officials." Unintended? It is very much intended now that Americans know that the concept of privacy is dead and buried and will instead seek other methods to communicate. Which simply means the NSA has to get even bigger in order to thwart the imminent, daily and "clear and present" danger that US citizen-cum-terrorists pose to the US despotic totalitarian state republic.

New bill equates popular bloggers to mass media

Published time: February 19, 2014 09:05
Russian lawmakers suggest that internet authors whose works attract 10,000 or more visitors a day should be accredited as journalists, receiving all rights and responsibilities commensurate with this status.
The changes in state attitude to the blogosphere are the main part of the fresh package of amendments to the Law on Mass Media, Izvestia daily reported on Wednesday quoting an unnamed parliamentary source. According to the source, the figure of 10,000 daily visitors is already fixed in the draft papers, but did not specify if this was a single-time threshold or a mean index.
When a blogger signs for mass media accreditation he or she will automatically have an obligation to observe all legal norms applied to registered news outlets - the obligation to verify information before distributing it and responsibility for the consequences caused by the publications.

Meanwhile In The "Democratic" Republic Of Congo...


It seems the Democratic Republic of Congo has been learning its diplomacy from other nations...


Philippines army chief scoffs at China island claims

Thu Feb 20, 2014 6:10PM GMT
Chief of Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has scoffed at Beijing's claims over the regional islands near the Philippines, vowing to defend his country’s fishermen against the Chinese navy.
General Emmanuel Bautista on Thursday rejected Chinese territorial claims in the South China Sea as "nonsensical."

Mexicans protest against US policies

Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:4AM GMT
Mexican people have staged a protest to condemn the policies of the United States toward the North American country.
According to reports, demonstrators clashed with police in the city of Toluca, near the capital, Mexico City, on Wednesday ahead of a visit by US President Barack Obama for the sixth annual Summit of North American Leaders.

 Egg Donor IRS Challenge Offers Future Sperm Tax Certainty

By Richard Rubin Feb 20, 2014 6:00 AM GMT+0100
To Nichelle Perez, the $20,000 she received for donating her eggs for fertility treatments was a tax-exempt payment for pain and suffering.
Not so, said the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, which considers it income.