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IEA Head Warns "Wild West" Energy Scenario Could Unravel Europe

IEA Head Warns "Wild West" Energy Scenario Could Unravel Europe The unity of EU member states could be in jeopardy as a dark winter fast approaches set to trigger a 'continental scramble' for energy resources. European countries would be in a "wild west scenario" in their attempt to pursue energy security which would result in souring relations with neighbors and cause worsening fuel and power shortages with risks of social unrest, warned Fatih Birol, the head of the International Energy Agency, who was quoted by the Financial Times.  Birol spoke Thursday in an interview at the inaugural Global Clean Energy Action Forum in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, when he explained the energy crisis threatens to shatter EU unity as countries could restrict or stop trading energy resources with neighbors to ensure their own energy security.  "The implications will be very bad for energy, very bad for the economy, but extremely bad politically ... if Europe fails this test in energy, it can go beyond energy implications," Birol said The head of the Paris-based watchdog energy group was very straightforward about the two possible scenarios: "EU and members will work in solidarity, supporting each other . . . or there is another scenario, if everybody is for himself." Meanwhile, earlier this month, the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, was firm in her state of the union address that the unity of EU member states will prevail through this energy crisis.  But there has already been a breakdown in unity among some member states, as FT explains:  Norway's Nordic neighbours last month blasted Oslo for "selfish" behaviour as it considered pausing electricity exports while it refilled its hydroelectric reservoirs.  Andreas Bjelland Eriksen, state secretary in Norway's petroleum and energy ministry, denied it would halt exports, however, telling the Financial Times that the country was simply "prioritising filling reservoirs for the same reason as Europe is filling its gas (storage)".  The EU has faced opposition from Hungary and some other member states as it deepened sanctions on Russia in response to its invasion of Ukraine. Birol also said complacency in Europe is unwarranted at this moment with natural gas storage facilities filled because a colder-than-expected winter can quickly draw down on supplies, resulting in "bruises" for the continent in the coming months.  There was no indication the energy crisis would abate next year, he said, given lack of spare capacity in energy production worldwide would drive market tightness, adding competition for liquefied natural gas would increase with Chinese demand.  "When we look around there are not many new gas [projects] coming . . . And the Norway, Algeria, Azerbaijan pipelines are near their maximum capacity. It will be another challenging period," he said. Birol was adamant about Russia losing its top client [Europe] "forever ... this client paid the money on time and didn't create any political problems."  He dismissed any claims Russia could quickly replace lost European demand with exports to Asia: "You are not selling onions in the market. You have to build pipelines, infrastructure, logistics. This will take at least 10 years," he said. Birol said precisely what we noted earlier Friday about Russian energy exports set to shrink by the end of the year and well into next year. This may indicate energy prices are set for a rebound this winter.  On the social aspect, if one EU member country restricts power or fuel to another and triggers blackouts or rationing to protect its own security, this would certainly create social instability across the bloc.  Europe is on the list of impending social unrest areas in the "next six months" by Verisk Maplecroft, a UK-based risk consulting and intelligence firm.  It seems dark times are ahead for the bloc if EU unity shatters over energy security.  Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 05:45.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYT21 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

The View Russia Will Lose War In Ukraine May Be "Naive"

The View Russia Will Lose War In Ukraine May Be "Naive" Authored by Bruce Wilds via Advancing Time blog, The current view being spread by mainstream media in America may be naive. Russia may still win the war in Ukraine. Like most people at times, I'm taken aback and astonished by just how wide opinions and views surrounding a certain event or situation might be. Like many of you just because I wish to listen to diverse views and the people expounding them does not mean I sign onto their ideology or am a fan.  Some of the recent overt speculation in the western press that Putin is sick and on the verge of death or losing power while ignoring the fragility and mental lapses of Biden leads me to discount much of what they are saying. The experience of living for over six months with my ninety-three-year-old mother-in-law that suffers from dementia has given me some insight into the loss of cognitive functioning. This extends to how they think, remember, and reason. It also includes some of the many tricks people use to mask or hide the embarrassment they feel when they lose their ability to remember.  One of the most pronounced methods is to ask general questions such as, how's the family, or did you have any trouble getting here. These can be used when you don't even know who you are talking to or where they came from. The fact is that due to changes in the brain, people living with dementia may sometimes experience hallucinations, delusions and/or paranoia. According to Heathman, MD, a Houston psychiatrist, “paranoia, or having false beliefs, is a common trait of later stage dementia.  If you were losing control of yourself wouldn't you be worried that people would take advantage of you? Still, having a paranoid individual in charge of your country is not necessarily a good thing. This could be one of the reasons Biden appears so obsessed with Trump and those that support him. It also could lead to unnecessary wars under the idea we must take them out before they "get us." For such a scenario just imagine using information backed by paranoia to justify a first strike on North Korea or Iran.   The last two paragraphs may have moved off topic, this was never intended to be a Biden hit piece. Returning to the crux of this post, I turn to Dr. Jordan Peterson. If there were a "Saying Things People Don't Want To Hear Award" it would go to Dr. Peterson. He is a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, a clinical psychologist, and the author of the multi-million copy bestseller 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, #1 for nonfiction in 2018 in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, the Netherlands, Brazil, and Norway. In the interest of full disclosure, I have never heard of/or read his book. What did catch my eye was an interview on Sky News Australia that lasted just under seven minutes. In the first minute, Peterson comes out swinging. He does this by making the startling statement that there is more than a bit of Hitler in all of us. Not wishing to create a "spoiler alert" for those deciding to watch the short interview it is still fair to call his prediction of Ukraine's future grave. Victory Is Often In The Eyes Of The Beholder Peterson states any notions that the Russians are going to lose the war in Ukraine are “naïve. He then elaborates, “Or that we’re going to win,” he said. “I don’t understand that. What do you mean we’re going to win? What are we going to win here exactly? Dr. Peterson said even if Vladimir Putin allowed Russia to retreat from Ukraine, the country would be left in “smoking ruins.” For Russia, victory could be declared if they are sucessful in pushing back the advancing borders of NATO. Peterson also delves into the whole idea of totalitarian states. He also points out that America and NATO, if limited by reason, may not be able to respond with nuclear weapons if Putin decides to unleash a "tactical" nuclear weapon. In my opinion such an event could well redefine modern warfare. The Peterson interview can be viewed below: Peterson keys in on the fact you cannot win against someone you cannot say no to. We sold our soul to Putin for his oil and gas. Putin holds the best cards in that he controls the gas flow into Europe. This winter has the potential to be very very ugly. If anything, I failed to enter the word very enough times in that last sentence. Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 06:30.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYT21 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

JP Morgan To Cannibalize Its Own Card Revenue In Race To Be First On Pay-By-Bank Processing

JP Morgan To Cannibalize Its Own Card Revenue In Race To Be First On Pay-By-Bank Processing “If I hear that any of you aren’t sharing information with each other, or you’re hiding information, you’re fired." That's apparently the "wisecracking" line that set the tone for when J.P. Morgan boss Jamie Dimon met with about 15 executives last November. The meeting was about his bank putting together a new payment processing system that would exclude credit card companies and be solely "pay by bank", according to new revelations by FT.  The project being headed up by the bank's corporate and investment bank (CIB) poses a formidable threat to companies like Visa and Mastercard, the report notes. So, naturally, the project caused a riff with the bank's consumer and community banking division (CCB), responsible for $5 billion in card revenues in 2021. Dimon's mindset, according to the FT report, was that it was better to "risk existing revenue" than to let another FinTech company beat them to the punch on the technology.  A person familiar with the project told FT: “Jamie wants to understand products that could be threats to banking institutions. If [pay-by-bank] is going to be widely adopted, the bank needs to be there. If long-term it fails, it’s a bit of an insurance policy.” Dimon reportedly lamented missing out on a mobile payments platform, which was made popular by Square. Now, he has turned his attention to addressing the costly interchange fees charged by credit card companies and loathed by major merchants like Amazon and Walmart.  The meeting last November featured both the head of the bank's corporate and investment bank and its co-heads of its consumer and community banking division. The goal was to have the CIB implement the technology and the CCB work to clarify consumer protections, the report says.  Takis Georgakopoulos, JPMorgan’s global head of payments for CIB, told FT: “The relationship between the CCB and CIB is as close as it’s ever been. We all know that innovation in payments is one of the firm’s greatest opportunities and we’re committed to it." These types of pay-by-bank systems have already become popular in places like the Netherlands and India, the report says. They have not caught on in the U.S. because of slower consumer adoption tied to the fact that ACH payments still take days to clear, instead of seconds.  While Mastercard and Visa don't seem to worried about the prospects of direct payments just yet, FT notes that they have made acquisitions of FinTech companies like Tink and Finicity to "bolster their ability to facilitate direct transactions".  Meanwhile, the CIB and the CCB at JP Morgan are still actively collaborating on the project.  Legacy card companies will soon find out exactly how real the threat is: JP Morgan is slated to bring its pay-by-bank system online next year and is already in talks with one FinTech company to provide infrastructure support.  Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 06:55.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYT21 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

There"s overwhelming support for an age limit on the president and Congress. Here"s why that won"t happen anytime soon.

Seventy-five percent of Americans polled by Insider favored congressional age limits. But no one in the halls of power seems ready to go that far. Vicky Leta/Insider Some have proposed age limits for elected officials amid concerns about America's gerontocracy. But members of Congress young and old alike balk at the idea, suggesting alternative fixes. Those include term limits, overhauling the seniority system, and fixing the campaign finance system. Read more from Insider's "Red, White, and Gray" series. As frustration mounts with the aging of America's top political leadership, a simple, seemingly straightforward solution to the problem has slowly gained currency: age limits.Particularly in the past several years, the idea of setting some sort of age cap on public service — particularly when it comes to the presidency — has been entertained by op-ed writers, interrogated by pollsters, and even floated by long-shot political candidates as both a populist and technocratic solution to our contemporary frustrations with gerontocracy.And if the US Constitution sets clear minimum age requirements not just for the presidency (35) but also for serving in the Senate (30) and the House (25), why wouldn't an upper age limit make sense as well?"It seems like the de facto threshold for running for president is not 35, but 80," said Democratic Rep. Ritchie Torres of New York, who at age 34 can serve in Congress but can't yet serve in the nation's highest office.Fresh polling by Insider and Morning Consult indicates that three in four Americans favor an age limit for members of Congress. More than four in 10 viewed the ages of political leaders as a "major" problem. Mandatory retirement based on age is standard practice in other industries — most notably for air-traffic controllers, airplane pilots, and within the military. Age-related declines in vision and hearing, the ability to endure stress, and the increased risk of medical emergencies rank among the reasons.But service ceilings aren't entirely alien to politics: Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia require state-level judges to retire when they reach a certain age, generally 70 to 75. !function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYT21 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

Shopee, the Amazon of Southeast Asia, has been on a layoff spree within a year of raising $6 billion. We dug into the financials for an inside look.

In a 1,000-word staff memo sent days before the layoffs began, CEO Forrest Li said the adverse market conditions are "not a quickly passing storm." The latest round of Shopee layoffs came almost exactly a year after the ecommerce giant raised $6 billion through the sale of equity and bonds in September 2021.SOPA Images / Contributor On September 19, Singapore-based ecommerce giant Shopee announced its latest round of layoffs. Shopee is pivoting from a growth mindset to cutting costs as external funding dries up. It's one of many tech giants downsizing as Fed rate hikes push investors to safe-heaven investments. As employees trickled into the offices of Singapore-headquartered ecommerce platform Shopee on September 19, it became clear that this was going to be no ordinary Monday morning.Within the next few hours, a "low single-digit percentage" of the company's employees had been given their marching orders, a Shopee spokesperson told Insider. The company employed more than 67,000 people at the end of 2021, per Bloomberg. Hours after the layoffs started — which a source close to the situation described as a "right-sizing" of resources — LinkedIn was lighting up with testaments from former employees expressing shock and dismay over their termination.The latest round of Shopee layoffs came almost exactly a year after the ecommerce giant raised $6 billion through the sale of equity and bonds in September 2021. At the time, it was the largest fundraising in Southeast Asia.We dug through Sea Limited's financials to piece together an inside look at the company and found that while revenue has been climbing year over year, losses have been growing. What's more, the recent Federal Reserve rate hikes have made it hard for Shopee — and other tech giants — to raise funds. Now, the company's mindset is shifting from growth to preserving cash.A turbulent seven monthsShopee was founded in 2015 by Chinese-born Singaporean businessman Forrest Li. The ecommerce brand launched in seven markets across Southeast Asia and has since expanded into 13 markets. Today, Li is the billionaire CEO of NYSE-listed Sea Limited, which owns 100% of Shopee as well a gaming unit called Garena.The company's public decisions over the past seven months have heralded various issues, both financial and regulatory.In March, Shopee closed its Indian office and laid off 300 staff members. The closure came a month after regulatory intervention by the Indian government led to the banning of certain apps, including Garena's Free Fire.In March, Shopee also pulled out of France, its sole presence in Europe.In late August, Shopee rescinded several job offers, the South China Morning Post reported. Among those was an offer extended to a Chinese national, who discovered that the offer had been pulled when he landed in Singapore along with his wife and dog.In early September, Shopee told staffers it was shutting operations in Chile, Columbia, and Mexico, and was entirely exiting Argentina, per local news agency Straits Times.And finally, on September 15, a few days before the cuts began, Li wrote a 1,000-word memo to staffers. In it, he said the adverse market conditions are "not a quickly passing storm" and wrote that the company's objective for the next 12-18 months would be to become self-sufficient.Li wrote that the company has a "solid cash base" but warned that "we can easily run through this cash base if we are not careful, and with investors fleeing for 'safe haven' investments, we do not anticipate being able to raise funds in the market." He also outlined a series of cost-cutting measures the company would be taking, including top-level executives temporarily forgoing salaries.Sea Limited, the parent company of Shopee, declined to comment for this piece.Numbers paint a bleak pictureSea Limited has lost around $170 billion of market value since an October 2021 high, per Bloomberg.Its quarterly losses have been ballooning, and the top-line revenues did not translate to profits in the second quarter of 2022. At the end of the second quarter, the company started signaling trouble ahead when it suspended a revenue forecast for the ecommerce business in 2022.Sea Limited's financial statements show that revenue is rising, and that ecommerce is the biggest growth driver. In the second quarter, Sea Limited's revenue stood at $2.9 billion, a 29% year-over-year growth. In the same quarter, Shopee's revenue came in at $1.8 billion, marking 75.6% year-over-year growth.However, the company's losses are also mounting. Sea Limited reported a loss of $931.2 million in the second quarter of 2022, widening significantly from a net loss of $433.7 million in the second quarter of 2021 and on the tail of two straight quarters of losses.Amid these growing losses, Sea Limited revised and then dropped its ecommerce revenue guidance for the year.In the fourth quarter of 2021, Shopee expected ecommerce revenue in 2022 to fall between $8.9 billion and $9.1 billion. The following quarter, it lowered that forecast range to $8.5 billion to $9.1 billion. And then, in the second quarter of 2022, the company said it would be "suspending" its ecommerce revenue guidance for 2022 altogether.Businesses do not operate in silos The layoffs and cutbacks at Shopee come as the tech industry at large undergoes a seismic shift in staffing.Facebook parent Meta is reorganizing departments and putting some employees on a 30-day list that gives them a month to find new roles within the organisation or leave, per a Wall Street Journal report. Fifty staffers of Google's startup incubator Area 120 will need to find new internal roles or risk being terminated. Snapchat parent Snap Inc. plans to lay off around 20% of its roughly 6,400-person staff, or roughly 1,200 employees, CNN reported. These companies — Shopee included — have seen their growth explode in recent years. Sea Limited posted revenues of $414 million in 2017, which ballooned to almost $10 billion in 2021. This growth was mainly fueled by cash from fundraising, as in its record September 2021 fundraising round.The market from which these growth-minded tech companies raised their funds looks drastically different now. Looking to bring down the rate of inflation, the Federal Reserve raised benchmark interest rates by another 0.75 points to 3% to 3.25% on September 21. While this means the cost of borrowing has shot up, it also means the return on risk-free assets — like US Treasury bonds — could be more attractive to investors than riskier tech stocks, per the Motley Fool.This is the scenario Li alluded to in his September 15 staff memo, when he wrote that investors are fleeing for "safe-haven" investments, and it's why investment funding has dried up for Shopee. As an alternate to external funding, companies can look inwards to fuel growth and expansion. However, Sea Limited has been posting losses for the past few quarters, so that option is not viable in the short-term.All this has led to Shopee prioritizing cash flow via cost-cutting over growth, which in turn led to the September 19 layoffs and to the mindset change Li outlined in his staff memo."In the past, we have focused on growth first, and sometimes growth at all costs. This was not a wrong approach, as global conditions were ripe with opportunities then," Li wrote. "But now that global conditions have changed, we too must adapt."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYT21 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

A Russian man who was called up to fight in Ukraine shot an official at a local enlistment office, reports say

A video shows a local official collapsing at an enlistment office in Siberia after a Russian man shot him, multiple reports said. Soldiers conduct military exercise in Moscow, Russia, on September 1, 2022.Russian Defense Ministry / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images A Russian man shot the head of a local military draft committee in Siberia on Monday, reports said. A video of the incident shared online shows an official collapsing on stage after a shot rings out. The gunman was detained and the official is in critical condition, the reports said.  A Russian man who was called up to fight in the war in Ukraine shot an official at a local enlistment office, multiple reports said.The incident took place in the Siberian city of Ust-Ilimsk on Monday and was captured on video, according to The Guardian, Reuters, and independent Russian news outlet The Insider.The video shows two military officials on stage in front of a group of new recruits who had been called up to fight in the ongoing war in Ukraine, The Insider reported.Suddenly, a gunshot rings out and one of the officials collapses as everyone else runs out of the enlistment in panic, the video shows."Nobody is going to go anywhere," the man shouted moments before opening fire, The Guardian reported, citing eyewitnesses. Insider was unable to independently verify the video. The official was identified as Alexander Vladimirovich Eliseev, a military commandant who also runs the local draft board in the Irkutsk region, Russian state media outlet TASS reported.Igor Kobzev, the governor of the region, wrote on the Telegram messaging app that Eliseev was "in intensive care in an extremely serious condition," TASS reported.Another video on social media, shared by The Insider, shows the motionless official on a stretcher as he is carried out of the building and into an ambulance.The suspect was identified as a 25-year-old resident of Ust-Ilimsk, TASS reported. "The shooter was immediately detained. And he will definitely be punished," Kobzev added in his Telegram post, according to TASS. Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a partial mobilization last week, ending Russia's reliance on volunteer troops.His announcement sparked panic among Russians as some attempted to flee the country and others took to the streets to protest.Hundreds of people have been arrested for protesting.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYT21 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

The bond market is in the middle of its worst decline since 1949. It"s set to unravel some very popular trades, BofA says.

The worst bond market decline since 1949 will rattle stocks as surging interest rates unwind the most crowded stock trades, BofA wrote in a research note. Welcome back, team. Phil Rosen here. On Friday, I wrapped my final day at the Messari Mainnet conference in New York City. There, I rubbed shoulders with crypto enthusiasts, blockchain founders, and angel investors who all seem convinced the future of finance is decentralized — and that after parties are mandatory. For the small price of sleep deprivation, last week I took note of dozens of evening festivities ranging from panel talks to rooftop happy hours and even a yacht party. The overwhelming bullishness was the most obvious quirk of the conference. Bitcoin and ether have cratered more than 60% this year, but no one seemed to remember that while dancing on a barge in the East River.  "The general sentiment among VCs [here] is very upbeat," one blockchain exec told me. Read my full dispatch here: Crypto parties are still raging in the bear market. Here's what it's like at Mainnet, where tickets cost $2,100 and attendees party on yachts.And below, I'm breaking down what Bank of America has to say about the worst bond market decline in over 70 years. Buckle up. If this was forwarded to you, sign up here. Download Insider's app here.Alexander Spatari/Getty Images1. The bond market is in the middle of a historic crash and it'll hammer stocks, according to a Friday note from Bank of America. As central banks around the world move to stem inflation, BofA analysts said bonds are experiencing their worst decline since 1949. The US Aggregate Bond ETF is down 15% in 2022, and global bonds have seen even more pain. "Bond crash in recent weeks means highs in credit spreads, lows in stocks are not yet in," BofA analysts said, adding that if it gets worse it could unwind the long US dollar, long US tech, and long private equity trades. These are the trades that helped catapult mega-cap tech names like Apple, Amazon, and Alphabet. If those widely-held, crowded positions become losing bets, BofA said, it would mean a sell-off in stocks. "True capitulation is when investors sell what they love and own," the firm noted.Bank of America is by no means alone in its downbeat forecast. Goldman Sachs on Friday slashed its year-end expectation for the S&P 500 to 3,600 from 4,300.The Fed's aggressiveness, the Wall Street giant said, is going to drag stocks more than 4% lower going into the new year."The expected path of interest rates is now higher than we previously assumed, which tilts the distribution of equity market outcomes below our prior forecast," Goldman strategists said in a note, adding that the outlook is unusually murky."The forward paths of inflation, economic growth, interest rates, earnings, and valuations are all in flux more than usual, with a wider distribution of potential outcomes."What's your stock market outlook heading into year-end? Where is the S&P 500 going to end 2022? Email prosen@insider.com or tweet @philrosenn. In other news: Worried traderRichard Drew/Associated Press2. US stock futures fall early Monday, after the pound slumped nearly 5% to a record low overnight. Meanwhile, oil prices also plunged, with Brent trading below $85 a barrel. Here are the latest market moves. 3. Earnings on deck: Max Healthcare Institute Ltd Registered Shs, Neil Industries Ltd, and more, all reporting.4. Ray Dalio said his hedge fund Bridgewater Associates is up around 25% this year. He broke down two ways investors should approach the market as it is due to drop another 20% — and explained what area he's bullish on in the long run.5. Wharton professor Jeremy Siegel said Jerome Powell is making one of the biggest policy mistakes in the Fed's 110-year history. It's the same exact mistake the Fed made one year ago, Siegel noted — and that could tip the US economy into a recession.6. The IEA's executive director slammed Russia's plan to switch gas exports from Asia to Europe. The Kremlin has "already lost the energy battle" against the EU, Fatih Birol said. He thinks the pivot will take at least 10 years: "You're not selling onions." 7. A top economist said US home prices could plunge 20% by next summer as a housing recession kicks in. House prices are down about 5% from their May peak, and existing home sales are down 20% from a year ago. But Fed officials have indicated they want a correction in the market. 8. The S&P Global exec in charge of the firm's DeFi efforts broke down Wall Street's biggest hurdles to institutional adoption of crypto. In comments at the Messari Mainnet conference, the Chief DeFi officer said institutional capital will flood into crypto once there's more regulatory clarity. Get the full details here.9. The head of ETF strategy at $19.5 billion Allianz shared how to manage risk as the Fed moves to slow inflation. Stocks have tanked since interest rates have climbed, but Johan Grahn explained how investors can manage pitfalls and make smarter money moves as the chances of a recession heighten.Markets Insider10. As stocks sell off, Fundstrat's Tom Lee is sticking to his bullish year-end stock market forecast. Lee argued the Fed could actually do far less tightening, since the market is "doing [the] Fed's work" already. Here's what you want to know. Keep up with the latest markets news throughout your day by checking out The Refresh from Insider, a dynamic audio news brief from the Insider newsroom. Listen here.Curated by Phil Rosen in New York. (Feedback or tips? Email prosen@insider.com or tweet @philrosenn).Edited by Max Adams (@maxradams) in New York and Hallam Bullock (@hallam_bullock) in London. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYT21 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

Amazon officially confirms it will hold a 2nd "Prime Day" sales event in October

Amazon will be throwing the new sales event right before it heads into its busy holiday season, known internally as "peak." Clodagh Kilcoyne/File Photo/Reuters Amazon announced it's holding a new sales event called the "Prime Early Access Sale" in October. Amazon has historically had a big sales event for its prime subscribers in July. Insider previously reported Amazon was planning the second October event. Amazon is doubling up its usual "Prime Day" sales bonanza by hosting another sales event for its Prime subscription members in October, the retail giant announced in a press release Monday.The sales event, which will run through October 11 and 12, will be called the "Prime Early Access Sale" and feature a list of 100 "popular and giftable items" per Amazon's press release.Insider's Katherine Long reported in July that Amazon was planning an October deals event after viewing internal company documents describing the event, but confirmation only arrived Monday,The documents reported by Insider called the Early Access Sale a "high velocity" sales event designed to reward people who are signed up to Amazon's subscription service, Amazon Prime.Amazon is already famous for Prime Day, which takes place in July. The October timing of the Early Access Sale means Amazon will be throwing the sales event right before it heads into its busy holiday season, known internally as "peak."Amazon increased the annual price of its Prime membership in February by $20 in the US, and announced in July it was raising prices in several European countries by as much as 43%.Amazon did not immediately respond when contacted by Insider about why it had decided to introduce another sales day.The e-commerce giant experienced a huge surge in demand at the onset of the pandemic, which caused the company to buy up warehouse space that now exceeds its needs, chief financial officer Brian Olsavsky told reporters in April.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYT21 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

Europe Is Facing A Dementia Problem

Europe Is Facing A Dementia Problem Dementia affects more than 55 million people worldwide, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This number is expected to rise to 78 million by 2030 and 139 million by 2050, as we experience an aging population. Dementia-related symptoms are caused by various diseases and traumas that affect the brain, such as Alzheimer's disease or a stroke. It disrupts memory and other cognitive functions, impacting one’s ability to perform daily tasks. As Statista's Anna Fleck notes, cases of dementia are on the rise worldwide, with figures set to double in many countries over the next 30 years. You will find more infographics at Statista The OECD predicts that in Italy we can expect to see 43 cases of dementia per 1,000 inhabitants by 2050, up by 20 cases since 2021. Spain will similarly see around 41 cases per 1,000, while Germany and France are likely to experience a sharp rise to around 35 people per 1,000. According to the WHO, the risk of developing dementia can be reduced through regular exercise, avoiding the harmful use of alcohol, not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight and eating a balanced diet. Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 04:15.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

The Global Water Crisis Could Crush The Energy Industry

The Global Water Crisis Could Crush The Energy Industry Authored by Felicity Bradstock via OilPrice.com, Water is growing more scarce due to climate change. Water scarcity could derail the green energy boom, and even hinder fossil fuel production. With rising concerns over water scarcity, mainly due to climate change, there are fears that the big transition to renewable energy will be hindered even further. For years, the energy sector, and almost every other sector, has taken water for granted, viewing it as an abundant resource. But as we move into a new era of renewable energy, the vast amounts of water required to power green energy operations may not be so easy to find. And it’s not just renewables that are under threat from water scarcity, as it also hinders fossil fuel production and threatens food security.  In recent months, we have seen extreme droughts across Europe and the U.S., which are finally making people realise the significance of water security. Stefano Venier, CEO of the Italian energy infrastructure company Snam, highlights the huge impact recent droughts have had on both food security and energy production. Labelled as ‘Europe’s worst drought in 500 years’, the low water levels have restricted shipping capabilities, as well as drying up soil and reducing summer crop yields.  Venier explains, “For a long time, water was considered [as being] for free, as something that is fully available in any quantity.” He went on to say, “Now, we are discovering that with climate change … water can become scarce.” And so, “we have to regain the perception of importance, and the value [that] … the water has, also, with respect to … energy production… we have discovered that without water, enough water, we cannot produce the energy we need, or we can’t ship the fuels for filling the power plants,” he added. The drought has already raised concerns for nuclear power plant operators that rely on water from rivers to cool their nuclear reactors. EDF typically uses water from the Rhone and Garonne but rising water temperatures mean that nuclear power output could be reduced during hot periods. The falling water levels have also hindered traditional energy operations such as coal output, according to several European energy firms. But the issue of water scarcity is perhaps most detrimental to hydropower projects. In the U.S., several hydropower operations are located along rivers with falling water levels, with a higher risk of water scarcity by 2050. Montana, Nevada, Texas, Arizona, California, Arkansas and Oklahoma are the most affected states. A recent study published in the Journal Water found that 61 percent of all global hydropower dams will be in basins with very high or extreme risk for droughts, floods or both. In addition, one in five hydropower dams will be in high flood risk areas, an increase from one in 25 today.  World Wildlife Fund’s Global Freshwater Lead Scientist Jeff Opperman explains, “Hydropower projects must deal with a range of hydrological risks–ranging from too little water to too much–and these risks are projected to increase in many regions due to climate change.” “Already, we’ve seen regions, such as the southwestern US, southern Africa, and Brazil, where hydropower generation has declined due to falling water levels,” he adds.  And it’s not just the U.S. that is facing these challenges. In August, Norway threatened to limit its power exports due to low reservoir levels. The country, which relies on hydropower for around 90 percent of its electricity production, increased regulations on power production to prevent hydroelectric reservoir levels from running out of water. This news came just days after the world’s longest under-sea power cable began transferring hydroelectric energy from Norway to the UK.  Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Aasland explained, “We need a management mechanism or security mechanism that safeguards national security of supply so that we do not run out of water in our reservoirs.” He added, “We are now introducing a system where, when we come to a situation where the magazine capacity is below what is normal for the time of year and down to a critically low level, there will be a restriction on exports.”  These kinds of restrictions could become commonplace if these severe weather events, and related water scarcity, continue to take place. Europe’s recent heatwave far exceeded the expectations of climate experts, with several countries reaching record highs which led to wildfires in areas that had never previously experienced such events, showing the reality of the effects of climate change.  As well as the detrimental effect water scarcity has on energy output, it also has a hugely negative impact on food production. With several areas of the world seeing poorer harvests year on year, as temperatures soar and water scarcity becomes a challenge, many countries are worried about their food production levels. And the water-food-energy nexus is raising concerns over the impact of the two other factors on the energy sector. We’re already seeing this nexus work the other way, with increasing gas prices causing fertiliser shortages, which have exacerbated the impact of water shortages on agricultural yields further.  With rising concerns over water scarcity, mainly due to climate change, there are fears that the big transition to renewable energy will be hindered even further. However, even traditional fossil fuel production cannot escape from the effects of water scarcity, and the water-food-energy nexus may further exacerbate the situation, meaning that plans to mitigate this scarcity must be quickly established to avoid a major energy crisis.  Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 05:00.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Old men helped cause the Soviet Union"s collapse. Historians say it"s a warning sign for the United States.

The United States' leadership has more in common with the last years of the USSR than they care to admit. Wally McNamee/Getty; Photo 12/Getty; Brandon Bell /Getty; Michael M. Santiago/Getty; Anna Kim/Insider The Soviet Union became a gerontocracy in its final years, contributing to its collapse. Historians say it's a cautionary tale for the US, whose leaders have been in power for decades. One Soviet historian told Insider these US politicians "seem to hold on to office like grim death." Read more from Insider's "Red, White, and Gray" series. President Ronald Reagan once joked that Soviet leaders "kept dying" on him during his first few years in office.Though Reagan at the time was the oldest president to ever enter the White House — he was 69 at his inauguration in 1981 — the US didn't hold a candle to the Soviets when it came to geriatric leaders.In 1981, the average age of the powerful 14-man Politburo that ruled over the USSR was 69 — a solid 13 years more senior than the average age of Reagan's Cabinet that same year.And Reagan was right: Soviet leaders had consistently died on the job. Leonid Brezhnev, who led the USSR for 18 years, died at 75 in 1982. He was followed by Yuri Andropov, who died in 1984 at 69. Andropov's successor, Konstantin Chernenko, died in 1985 at 73.Fast-forward to 2022.The United States' leadership has more parallels with the latter days of the USSR than those leaders might care to admit. President Joe Biden will soon turn 80. His predecessor, Donald Trump, entered office at 70 and six years later is considered a frontrunner for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is 82. The average age in the Senate is 63, and the average age in the House is 58. Meanwhile, the median age in the US is 38. When it comes to age, Congress is not especially representative of the general population.Yelena Biberman, a political scientist and senior fellow at the Atlantic Council's South Asia Center, told Insider that the age of an individual politician should be inconsequential because "mental and physical acuity varies greatly between individuals at old age." But she added that it's "very concerning" when there's "an entire cohort of very old politicians at the highest levels of the federal government."During the final decades of the USSR, its corrupt, aging leaders embraced policies that derailed the Soviet economy as they continued to live in opulence. They refused to embrace large-scale changes and helped set the next generation up for failure.Historians and political scientists say the Soviet Union's morphing into a gerontocracy toward its end contributed to its demise, arguing that this serves as a cautionary tale for other countries — particularly the US, at a time when many of its top leaders are well beyond the age of retirement typical in other fields.Insider's "Red, White, and Gray" series explores the costs, benefits, and dangers of life in a democracy helmed by those of advanced age, where issues of profound importance to the nation's youth and future — technology, civil rights, energy, the environment — are largely in the hands of those whose primes have passed.Recent history from across oceans offers insight.'Detached'The Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev in Moscow on May 9, 1981.Laski Diffusion/Getty ImagesWhen Mikhail Gorbachev came to power in 1985, he was the fourth leader the Soviet Union had seen in three years. At 54, he was also the youngest Soviet leader in years. Within six years, he would oversee the downfall of a superpower.In the 1970s and 1980s, the USSR was largely controlled by old men who were increasingly detached from the public and whose calcified rule left Gorbachev with a mountain of problems that he ultimately failed to overcome. Gorbachev desperately tried to reform the Soviet system via perestroika and glasnost, vying to pump life into the stagnant economy by introducing elements of free-market capitalism while opening the door to increased freedom of expression and freedom of the press.But the changes could not repair the damage. As Gorbachev put it in his resignation address in December 1991, "the old system collapsed before the new one had time to begin working, and the crisis in the society became even more acute."Biberman, a Russia scholar who's an associate professor at Skidmore College, said the Soviet gerontocracy wasn't the main reason the USSR dissolved but was intrinsically tied to the problems underpinning the collapse.Economic stagnation and "unsustainable levels of military spending" were probably far more to blame, Biberman said, but there was also a general sense that "the world-historical mission that motivated the early cadres of the Soviet state" wasn't worth believing in anymore. It made Soviet politics "a very stale affair which didn't inspire the younger generations and ossified the ruling caste in place," Biberman said.Biberman pointed to similarities in the US system now."There is an aging — and already quite old — cadre of American politicians at the federal level who seem to hold on to office like grim death," Biberman said, adding that this "stagnant caste" of US politicians has been "quite detached from the material concerns of ordinary citizens since perhaps the end of the Cold War."Much like the Soviet Union's leaders, these politicians — on both sides of the aisle — aren't offering society much in the way of "new ideas or political motivation," Biberman added.Susan Grunewald, a historian of the Soviet Union at Louisiana State University, told Insider that she'd be hesitant to directly compare the US and USSR but that "you can certainly see parallels.""It doesn't matter whether it's the Soviet Union or the United States — there's always a clash" between older and younger generations, Grunewald said.The older generation is grounded in years of experience and years in power, meaning those people "don't necessarily want to change or radically alter the status quo," Grunewald said. "And the youth has a different life experience. They have different approaches. They look at everything with a different perspective. And so naturally there's going to be a disagreement."'They clung to power'Vladislav Zubok, a top Soviet historian at the London School of Economics who grew up in the USSR, told Insider that there was no single thing that led to the fall of the Soviet Union. But he emphasized that during that era of gerontocracy, "we were all aware of something going deeply wrong.""It looked like the generation of Brezhnev, Andropov, Chernenko, and all of them — they clung to power. They were afraid to let it go," said Zubok, the author of "Collapse: The Fall of the Soviet Union."The Soviet government in those days was a subject of ridicule, Zubok said. "When people began to realize, for instance, that Brezhnev couldn't quite speak properly, he quickly became a comical person," he added.Brezhnev's health took a turn for the worse after a stroke in 1976, but he remained in power for years. The historian Roy Medvedev claimed in 1988 that Brezhnev had suffered clinical death in 1976 and went on to rule in a daze for the rest of his tenure."Many people in his entourage who were influential but totally wallowing in corruption needed Brezhnev to appear from time to time in public as at least a formal head of state. They literally led him around by the hand," Medvedev said at the time.Zubok said the Soviet gerontocracy was largely derived from the generation who fought World War II and felt they had a "special credibility" to rule, but by clogging up the system for so long they made it difficult to prepare the leaders of tomorrow. They also resisted reforms that might have improved citizens' quality of life, a period that Gorbachev called the "era of stagnation."By the time Gorbachev took over, Zubok said, he'd "inherited so many systemic problems converging at the same time."Gorbachev's lack of experience created within him the impression that he was there to change history and made him more willing to take risks, Zubok said, adding: "He began to experiment without sufficient knowledge of how these experiments might backfire but with great idealism. And that did become a central factor in the demise of the Soviet Union."'Pernicious role of money'People hold signs and cheer during a rally calling for an end to corporate money in politics on January 21, 2015, in Washington, DC.Drew Angerer/Getty ImagesThough the political systems of the US and the USSR are drastically different, Zubok underscored that what happened in the Soviet Union still serves as a warning. The fact the US is a democracy makes it even "more painful" to see it move toward being gerontocratic, Zubok said, laying much of the blame on the "pernicious role of money" in the seemingly nonstop cycle of elections.With no congressional term limits, incumbents in Congress are offered ample opportunity to consolidate power and influence. This often translates to congressional incumbents raising more money than their opponents and helps explain why they win most races each election.For the past 40 years, incumbent reelection rates in the US House have hovered between 85% and 98%, according to the nonpartisan research organization OpenSecrets. In the Senate, reelection rates for officeholders have ranged from 75% to 96%. And while some lawmakers choose to quit in their primes, others stay well into advanced age amid questions about their abilities to carry out their duties.In short, it's very difficult to defeat a congressional candidate who's already in Congress. And it's a large part of the reason some congressional lawmakers remain in their seats for decades.Even with "periodic elections" in the US, Zubok said, it's still ending up with "the same kind of people who grow old" in power. Biden is just one example of current leaders in Washington who've served in powerful roles for decades. He became a senator at 30 in 1973; half a century later, he's in the White House. Pelosi, meanwhile, has been in Congress for 35 years.'People who don't know when to go'Brezhnev's 75th-birthday celebration at the Grand Kremlin Palace in December 1981.Laski Diffusion/Getty ImagesFiona Hill, who served as the top Russia advisor on the National Security Council in the Trump administration, said that "of course" the gerontocracy in the Soviet Union contributed to its ruin.But she also cautioned against writing off the elderly or succumbing to ageism, saying that "some of our greatest thinkers have come into their own late in life."Even so, Hill said that in the US, some groups seem to "have been bypassed in the political system," and Americans have to ask why that is.Joe Biden in 1978, when he was a US senator representing Delaware.Getty ImagesHill said the issue with politicians like Biden is not so much their age but how long they've been in power, which is why many voters turned against political dynasties like the Bush family or the Clintons in recent election cycles. "People were looking for something fresh and new," she said, emphasizing that the problem is the "ossification of the system."Political institutions in the US "just seem to be dominated by people who don't know when to go" and appear to view their positions as "lifetime appointments," Hill said, creating the perception that it's "an arena that is so out of touch with reality, and increasingly so."A system with clogged arteriesA gerontocratic government is not necessarily an inherent sign of democratic decline — but in a country like the US, it can point to deep flaws in the system."The American gerontocracy is composed of a group that has for decades refused to relinquish power," Biberman said. "A healthy mix of generations in political office would have its advantages."Countries with younger leaders have been applauded for their approaches to major issues. Finland, led by Prime Minister Sanna Marin, 36, was ranked the happiest country in the world for the fifth consecutive year in 2022. As economic powerhouses with older leaders like the US struggled with their responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, New Zealand's prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, 42, was lauded for her measured approach that helped prevent the virus' spread.Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin arrives for a European Union summit in Brussels on July 17, 2020.Photo by Pool/Getty ImagesThat's not to say that countries with older leaders cannot be innovative or that nations with young leaders are always prosperous. But there are few examples in the past century of countries ruled by a gerontocracy where the leadership adopted reforms that increased economic competitiveness or improved their citizens' quality of life.Now, countries with older leaders clinging to power tend to be autocratic. The Chinese leader Xi Jinping, for example, turned 69 in June, breaking the customary age limit of 68 for top leaders in the Communist Party. He's overseen the elimination of presidential term limits and is on the verge of an unprecedented third term. That Xi broke from China's past efforts to prevent gerontocracy is one of many signs of the country becoming increasingly authoritarian under his rule. It's clear he intends to rule for life.A country led by people who have been in power for decades — regardless of whether its government is authoritarian or democratic — points to underlying problems that can induce stagnation and instability."It shows that the system does not perform well, that the arteries get clogged at some point," Zubok said. "Instead of pushing new blood up upwards, they're clogged."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Pound crashes to record low against the dollar as UK tax cut plans rattle investors

Sterling plunged by as much as 5% in Asia-hours trading after the UK's finance minister said there is "more to come" on tax cuts. The UK's chief financial minister Kwasi Kwarteng.Ian Forsyth/Getty Images The pound plunged almost 5% to $1.0350 during Asian trading Monday, beneath its previous 1985 low. The UK government's tax-cutting has spooked investors, and a minister hinted Sunday more cuts are coming. Analysts said the Bank of England may need to make an emergency interest rate hike to support the pound. The British pound tumbled to a record low against the dollar Monday, after the UK's finance minister promised more of the tax cuts that have rattled investors.Sterling fell by as much as 4.7% in Asian trading hours to $1.0350, its lowest level since 1971, when the UK switched to a decimal-based currency system. It was down 1.56% at $1.0681 at last check.Analysts said the Bank of England may have to bring in an emergency interest rate hike to prop up the plummeting pound. That's even though the UK's central bank just raised interest rates by 50 basis points on Thursday and isn't scheduled to meet again until November 3.The British currency has slid since the UK's new prime minister, Liz Truss, revealed the government's "Growth Plan" on Friday. Economists condemned the proposed tax cuts as fiscally irresponsible, given the UK is facing an inflation-fueled cost-of-living crisis."The pound recovered some of the decline, but is still 3% weaker compared to Friday, and the weakening over the past week is a whopping 8%," SEB's chief quantitative strategist Karl Steiner said."There is already speculations that the BOE now will have to hike by as much as 1 percentage point to stabilize the pound," SEB's chief quantitative strategist Karl Steiner said.Kwasi Kwarteng, named chancellor in the new government this month, doubled down on the tax cut plans in a BBC interview Sunday, saying, "There's more to come".The planned tax cuts are the most aggressive in nearly 50 years, as they scrap the top rate of income tax and slash basic rates by 1%."The plan has been perceived as a tax cut for the rich alongside higher levels of debt," City Index market analyst Matt Simpson said in a note."The question now is whether we see a follow-through in the European and US session and hurtle towards parity — a level which seemed an impossibility just a few months ago," he added."But if we see another day's trade like we did today, [the pound] will be trading firmly beneath it."Analysts said the crash in the pound could push the BoE to take action, even though it just raised interest rates by 50 basis points on Thursday and isn't scheduled to meet again until November 3.Read more: The UK has a new prime minister — meet Liz Truss, the tax-cutting Brexit convert taking over from Boris JohnsonRead the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Europe"s First Cold Snap Begins This Week Amid Worsening Energy Crisis

Europe's First Cold Snap Begins This Week Amid Worsening Energy Crisis Europe is plagued with an energy crisis, and the cold season is coming ahead of schedule.  The stability of the EU's natural gas reserves now depends on a mild winter. But new weather forecasts for next week indicate that "Arctic chill will blow across western Europe through next week will be the first test of how willing people are to delay switching on the heating in a bid to save energy and ease household budgets," according to Bloomberg.  Forecaster Maxar WeatherDesk said temperatures in London would sink 5 degrees Celsius below average, falling as low as 6.5 degrees Celsius overnight on Sept. 27. In Frankfurt, Germany, temperatures will fall 3.5 degrees Celsius below normal levels on the 28th, while France and Spain will see temperatures 3-4 degrees lower than the seasonal norm.  "It will turn even colder early next week as a plunge of Arctic air surges southwards, and a strong northerly wind will accentuate the chilly feel," according to the UK's Met Office. Germany, France, and Spain have approved energy conservation measures to decrease demand for NatGas, while the EU as a whole has reached the 80% target (now 86.9%) of filling storage tanks by Oct. 1.  According to Aurora Energy Research, full NatGas storage could sustain EU countries for at least three months this winter. In Germany, the bloc's largest economy and home to a quarter of EU storage, there are about 80-90 days of fuel in storage.  But with a squeeze on regional supplies exacerbated by Western sanctions against Russia that have backfired, plus Russian energy giant Gazprom's shuttering of Nord Stream 1 to Europe -- the stability of Europe's NatGas reserves depends on a relatively mild winter because if it gets cold enough, demand will soar and draw on reserves faster, catapulting NatGas prices even higher.   The blast of cold air next week is troublesome because the EU heating season doesn't begin until the first half of October.  Continuing to reduce Natgas demand is what European countries need to do because the latest National Grid Plc data show early morning UK fuel demand is already increasing. There needs to be a more significant conservation effort ahead of the colder months or face a very dark and expensive winter.  One would think Europeans wish for global warming this winter to starve off the rapid drawdown on NatGas reserves as the crippling energy crisis could extend well into 2023. This isn't a one-winter story.  Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 02:45.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Orbán Calls For Sanctions On Russia To Be Lifted By End Of Year

Orbán Calls For Sanctions On Russia To Be Lifted By End Of Year Authored by John Cody via Remix News, PM Orbán predicts that lifting sanctions will lead to a significant drop in inflation and a halving of energy prices... Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán (Fidesz) has appealed to the European Union to lift sanctions against Russia by the end of the year at the latest in order to alleviate soaring inflation not just in Europe, but across the globe. At a parliamentary group meeting in Balatonalmádi on Lake Balaton, Orbán warned that the conflict between Moscow and Kyiv is no longer a matter between the two countries and is escalating into a global economic war expected to last into next year. Brussels’ bureaucrats promised in the summer that the measures taken against Russia would harm the Kremlin and not EU citizens. In Orbán’s view, however, the opposite is the case. The Fidesz politician noted that he considers the sanctions partly responsible for the energy crisis and inflation. The costs for natural gas had already doubled because of the discussion of appropriate measures in June, and tripled a month later. According to the Hungarian prime minister, the current price shocks are hitting families particularly hard. Orbán is not the only one calling for an end to sanctions, with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotaki calling for a repeal of Russian sanctions as well. Other political leaders, such as Matteo Salvini, who leads the conservative League party, says that Europe needs a “rethink” on Russian sanctions due to the harmful economic effects. Orbán predicts that lifting sanctions will lead to an immediate halving of energy prices and a significant drop in inflation. Thanks to that, the European economy could regain strength and avoid the impending recession. The conservative Alternative for Germany party has also been pushing for an end to sanctions and an opening of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline due to soaring energy costs in Germany. AfD member of the Bundestag, Mariana Harder-Kühnel, said she agrees with Orbán. “The EU bureaucracy has turned the screw on the sanctions, and now we are paying the bill,” she said. “The problems are not only with food supply and medical care but also with waves of business and private bankruptcies,” she added. Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 03:30.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Russia Vows "Full Protection" For Any Annexed Territory As Nuclear Threat Grows

Russia Vows 'Full Protection' For Any Annexed Territory As Nuclear Threat Grows Authored by Jack Phillips via The Epoch Times, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that regions of Ukraine where referendums are being held will be under the Kremlin’s “full protection” if they are annexed by Russia, raising the prospect of the use of nuclear weapons. Residents of four Russian-occupied areas in eastern and southern Ukraine continued voting for four days on whether to join Russia. “Following those referendums, Russia of course will respect the expression of the will of those people who for many long years have been suffering from the abuses of the neo-Nazi regime,” Lavrov told reporters this weekend after addressing the United Nations General Assembly. He was referring to the Kyiv government. When asked by a reporter if Russia would possibly use nuclear weapons to defend any annexed regions in Ukraine, Lavrov said that any Russian territory will be “under the full protection of the state.” “All of the laws, doctrines, concepts, and strategies of the Russian Federation apply to all of its territory,” he said while referring to Russia’s doctrine on using nukes. Several days ago, former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev issued a warning on social media that Russia is prepared to use nuclear weapons. That came after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s speech announcing he would mobilize hundreds of thousands of troops, while he also issued a veiled threat about using all weapons in Russia’s arsenal to defend its territorial integrity. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attends a meeting on Aug. 4, 2022. (Russian Foreign Ministry/Handout via Reuters) While Putin’s comment was vague, Medvedev’s post on Telegram was more explicit. Medvedev currently serves as the deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council. “Russia has announced that not only mobilization capabilities but also any Russian weapons, including strategic nuclear weapons and weapons based on new principles, could be used for such protection,” he wrote, according to a translation. The referendums in four eastern Ukrainian regions, aimed at annexing territory Russia has taken by force since its invasion in February, were being staged for a third day on Sunday and the Russian parliament could move to formalize the annexation within days. By incorporating the four areas of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia into Russia, Moscow could portray attacks to retake them as an attack on Russia itself, a warning to Kyiv and its Western allies. Ukraine and its allies have dismissed the referendums as a sham designed to justify an escalation of the war and a mobilization drive by Moscow after recent battlefield losses. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Sunday his country would regain all the territory Russia had taken. “We will definitely liberate our entire country—from Kherson to the Luhansk region, from Crimea to the Donetsk region,” he said on the Telegram messaging app. Nuclear Threat It comes as Navy Admiral Charles A. Richard, the head of U.S. Strategic Command, acknowledged Russia’s recent warnings about using nuclear weapons. “We have not had to do that in over 30 years. The implications of that are profound,” he said during a panel discussion last week. “They’re profound for homeland defense. They’re profound for strategic deterrence as well as us achieving national objectives. And this is no longer theoretical,” he added. Richard added that it’s now possible that for the first time in decades, it’s possible the United States will have a “possible direct armed conflict with a nuclear-capable peer.” “Russia and China can escalate to any level of violence that they choose in any domain with any instrument of power worldwide,” Richard added. Tyler Durden Mon, 09/26/2022 - 02:00.....»»

Category: dealsSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Donald Trump privately slammed Ron DeSantis, calling him "fat," "phony," and "whiny": book

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman wrote that Trump also poked fun at former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's "weight problem." Then-President Donald Trump campaigning with Ron DeSantis at a rally in Pensacola, Florida, on November 3, 2018.AP Photo/Butch Dill, FileTrump slammed DeSantis in private, wrote New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman in her new book.Citing sources, Haberman wrote that Trump had called DeSantis "fat" and "whiny."He also said Chris Christie, another rival, had a "weight problem," per Haberman's book.Former President Donald Trump has been making rude comments in private about Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, according to a new book by New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman.In an excerpt from "Confidence Man: The Making of Donald Trump and the Breaking of America," published by The Atlantic on Sunday, Haberman detailed a meeting she had in the summer with Trump at the latter's golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey.During the meeting, she spoke with Trump about Christie, one of his 2016 election rivals."I was compared to him? Why? I didn't know I had that big of a weight problem," Trump told Haberman, per her account. He also called Christie an "opportunist."Haberman also wrote that she had heard of Trump using similar terms to describe DeSantis. She also recalled learning from sources that Trump had called DeSantis "fat," "phony," and "whiny" while also taking credit for the latter clinching the governor's seat in 2018.Per the excerpt, Trump told Haberman that the question he most often received was whether he would be running for president again."The answer is, yeah, I think so. Because here's the way I look at it. I have so many rich friends and nobody knows who they are," Haberman wrote of Trump's response.She added: "Reflecting on the meaning of having been president of the United States, his first impulse was not to mention public service, or what he felt he'd accomplished, only that it appeared to be a vehicle for fame, and that many experiences were only worth having if someone else envied them."Representatives for DeSantis and Christie and an aide at Trump's post-presidential press office did not immediately respond to Insider's requests for comment.DeSantis and Trump have been posited as leading contenders for the 2024 Republican presidential ticket, though neither has made a formal declaration about running in the next election.In July, a DeSantis representative told Insider that DeSantis remains "focused on Florida and running for reelection as governor this year." However, the governor has been boosting his political profile — launching a fundraising blitz that included selling a gold "Florida First Fighter" card that appeared to resemble the Trump Card. DeSantis also has high-profile supporters, such as podcast host Joe Rogan, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, and billionaire and Trump megadonor Peter Thiel.Trump has reacted harshly to the idea that DeSantis might be a potential competitor for the 2024 GOP ticket. In July, the former president slammed "Fox & Friends" for reporting on polls that showed DeSantis taking the lead over him, accusing the show's hosts of having "gone to the dark side." Earlier this month, Trump took a swipe at DeSantis, sharing an Insider story about his polling lead over DeSantis via his Save America political action committee.Rolling Stone also recently reported that Trump was irritated that DeSantis was stealing his limelight with a political stunt that involved two planeloads of migrants being flown to Martha's Vineyard, a Democratic enclave.Meanwhile, Trump also fat-shamed Christie on Truth Social after Christie gave an unflattering interview to ABC News' "This Week" about the Mar-a-Lago raid.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

An advisor to the January 6 committee said Mark Meadows" texts provide "irrefutable" proof of a comprehensive plot to overturn the 2020 election

Denver Riggleman, a former GOP congressman, told "60 Minutes" that Mark Meadows received texts about the alternate electors plot days after the election. White House chief of staff Mark Meadows speaks on a phone on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, Oct. 30, 2020, before President Donald Trump's departure on Marine One.Patrick Semansky/Associated Press A former technical adviser to the January 6 committee discussed the investigation with "60 Minutes." Denver Riggleman said texts from Mark Meadows showed a "roadmap" to overturning the election. Meadows was receiving texts about the alternate electors plot just days after the election. A former technical adviser to the January 6 committee said texts former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows turned over provide "irrefutable" proof of a plot to overturn the results of the 2020 election.Denver Riggleman, a former Republican congressman, made the comment during an interview with CBS News' "60 Minutes" on Sunday. He said Meadows' texts showed a "roadmap" for how allies of former President Donald Trump were trying to overturn the election."It showed actually the evolution of the beginning arguments from alternate electors all the way through rally planning, all the way to day of," he said.Host Bill Whitaker asked Riggleman to confirm his belief that Meadows' texts "provide irrefutable, time-stamped proof of a comprehensive plot at all levels of government to overturn the election."Riggleman responded affirmatively: "Irrefutable. Early in the text messages they were talking about alternate electors, you know, I think as soon as November 5th or November 6th."—60 Minutes (@60Minutes) September 25, 2022 Whitaker went on to note the many text messages Meadows had received in the days after the election, including one from Donald Trump Jr. in which he explained an alternate electors plan that would allow his father to win pending Congress's actions on January 6.Meadows, who was Trump's chief of staff from 2020 to 2021, was also receiving texts about how to address the "stolen" election from people like MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell and GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene. Insider previously compiled a list of all the texts Meadows had received while the January 6 insurrection was unfolding."The Meadows text messages show you an administration that was completely eaten up with a digital virus called QAnon and conspiracy theories: an apocalyptic, messianic buffoonery. You can look at the text messages as that roadmap, but it's also a look into the psyche of the Republican party today," Riggleman said.Riggleman noted it's unclear if Meadows turned over all of his relevant texts but said "what we got is pretty valuable."A lawyer for Meadows did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: personnelSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

FBI Whistleblower Comes Forward, Alleges Many Agents "Don"t Agree" With Bureau"s Direction

FBI Whistleblower Comes Forward, Alleges Many Agents "Don't Agree" With Bureau's Direction Authored by Jack Phillips via The Epoch Times An FBI whistleblower recently came forward and issued warnings about alleged politicization at the FBI, saying that the bureau is spying on law-abiding Americans and that many of its domestic counterterrorism cases are tantamount to “entrapment.” Kyle Seraphin, who has spent six years in the FBI, was suspended without pay and cannot seek another job without quitting or asking for permission. It’s not clear when he was suspended, but he said that he had run-ins with his managers about his refusal to get the COVID-19 vaccine although he was granted a religious exemption. “The number of guys who say, ‘I don’t agree with what’s going on here, but I’ve got three years to retire,’ it’s heartbreaking,” he told podcast host Dan Bongino. In one instance, Seraphin said he was forced to blow the whistle last year when Attorney General Merrick Garland told lawmakers that the Department of Justice was not targeting parents. He gave to a member of Congress an email that was circulated in the FBI, which said that Garland ordered the usage of the controversial PATRIOT Act to target parents with a tag, “EDUOFFICIALS.” At the time, in May 2022, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Mike Johnson (R-Ind.) alleged that the investigations involved parents who were “upset about mask mandates and state elected officials who publicly voiced opposition to vaccine mandates,” accusing Garland of making false statements to Congress. “That’s when you become part of political hatchet jobs, and I didn’t sign up for that, and nobody I know signed up for that either,” Seraphin told Bongino. “That’s not what people want to get involved in.” In an interview with the Washington Times last week, he said the bureau’s investigations into domestic violent extremism, white nationalists, and right-wing extremists are mostly entrapment operations with questionable moral and ethical underpinnings. “My team was deployed to 20 or 25 different high profile, national terrorism organization or terrorism investigations between 2018 and 2021. And what I saw, as the most obvious statement, is that there are three things about counterterrorism investigations,” he said. Seraphin stated: “Number one, the demand for white supremacy vastly outstrips the supply of white supremacy.” “Number two,” he added, “the FBI‘s playbook when it comes to counterterrorism investigations is always and unequivocally morally equivalent to entrapment, even if there’s a legal definition that allows them to skirt that.” ‘Inaccurate’ As for No. 3, Seraphin added to the Washington Times that the FBI doesn’t have an objective metric on how they prioritize cases. “There’s an entirely ridiculous internal process for determining every single national priority,” the whistleblower said. The Epoch Times has contacted the FBI for comment. A bureau spokesperson told the paper that his claims about entrapment lacked merit. “This comment is inaccurate and represents a clear misunderstanding of the policy and practice in FBI investigations,” the FBI said in a statement to the outlet. Attorney General Merrick Garland (L) and FBI Director Christopher Wray hold a press conference in Washington on Nov. 8, 2021. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) In the Bongino interview, Seraphin suggested that more FBI employees will come forward in the future, according to him, due to the bureau’s now-partisan nature. At least 14 FBI whistleblowers have come forward in recent months to provide information about recent actions inside the bureau, said Jordan, on the FBI’s investigations into the Jan. 6 Capitol breach, parents at school board meetings, and Hunter Biden’s laptop. At one point during the interview, Seraphin also touched on the Aug. 8 raid targeting former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago. Trump has often said that the search was political in nature and meant to harm his 2024 chances. “You ask me to go raid President Obama’s house, you ask me to raid President Bush’s house, it’s not happening,” he continued. “It’s not happening. I’m sorry, it’s not happening. I’m not doing that. I’m going to be, probably pretty vocal. That’s probably going to be my last day.” Tyler Durden Sun, 09/25/2022 - 20:30.....»»

Category: worldSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Woman Has Epic Meltdown At Walmart - Uses "Rape" As Excuse To Cut In Line

Woman Has Epic Meltdown At Walmart - Uses 'Rape' As Excuse To Cut In Line If you needed any more confirmation that the political left is normalizing insanity within our society, just take a look at this recent epic meltdown by a woman who cut in line at a Walmart and was called out by the guy behind her.  Screaming like a mental patient is justified because she claims to have been "raped" (and of course, she is wearing a mask). Note that the Walmart employees try to placate her instead of doing what they should have done, which is kick her out of the building.  The constant hand-holding of mentally unstable and emotionally stunted people is slowly but surely bringing America down. Tyler Durden Sun, 09/25/2022 - 21:00.....»»

Category: worldSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News

Pound Flash Crashes 500 pips To Record Low Amid Global FX Carnage As Things Start Breaking

Pound Flash Crashes 500 pips To Record Low Amid Global FX Carnage As Things Start Breaking Just as last week ended, with a relentless meltup in the exponentially rising US dollar, coupled with a collapse in cable, the yen, yuan, euro and so on, not to mention stocks and bonds, so the new week begins only this time the moves are even faster, even more brutal and even more acute, as we approach the breaking point. Case in point, after starting modestly higher, the meltup in the dollar accelerated, as the Bloomberg dollar index exploded to new all time highs... ... facilitated by a yen whose plunge made a mockery of Thursday's multi-billion BOJ intervention... ... and is forcing Kuroda to sell even more tens of billions of US Treasurys, to cash into USDs which he will then sell for yen, in the process pushing up 10Y yields even higher, creating a toxic feedback loop of higher yields and an even higher dollar, sending yields higher and the dollar even higher. But the imminent conclusion of Japan's MMT experiment notwithstanding, the real highlight of the session so far has been the total collapse in sterling, whose implosion after Friday's mini budget has accelerated and moments ago cable flash crashed to a new all time low of 1.0350, below the previous record low set in early 1985, and just millimeters away from parity as every single stop was taking out to the downside. . And since there is nothing at all to contain the now exponential move in the USD, now that the entire world is facing one massive, $20 trillion short squeeze in USD-denominated debt... Every foreign company or state that has issued USD debt right now pic.twitter.com/ALE3X1nsez — zerohedge (@zerohedge) September 26, 2022 ... expect an emergency central bank meeting this week where panicking officials do everything they can to contain the dollar and to undo the tremendous damage the Powell Fed has unleashed on the world. Because in the end, it's always the same. It's always the same pic.twitter.com/I6cp1FgSWl — zerohedge (@zerohedge) September 26, 2022 Tyler Durden Sun, 09/25/2022 - 21:24.....»»

Category: worldSource: NYTSep 26th, 2022Related News