[Irish Times] The Paris prosecutor’s office is co-operating with US authorities in their investigation of accused sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein, who died in an apparent suicide in a New York prison on August 10th.
Epstein was a regular visitor to France at least since 2002, when he purchased a 2,300sq m apartment on the Avenue Foch. His private jets, registered N120JE and N212JE, landed at Le Bourget airport 11 times in the last 18 months of his life.
Epstein was returning from a three-week stay in Paris when he was arrested at New Jersey’s Teterboro airport on July 6th.
The financier behaved in Paris as he did in Manhattan, Palm Beach and on his private Caribbean island. The walls of his Paris apartment were covered with photographs of naked young women, according to a worker cited in 2,024 pages of US court documents released on August 9th.
A former assistant to Epstein told Libération newspaper there were often several young women in the Avenue Foch apartment, fewer than in Palm Beach, where "there were eight or 10 at a time".
Epstein’s contacts book was published by the US website Gawker in 2015. It contained a section titled Paris Massage, with dozens of women’s first names and mobile phone numbers.
[PULSE.NG] Officials in Ethiopia's capital are weighing bans on sex work and street begging, the latest in a series of measures intended to clean up the country's image, the mayor's office said Thursday.
[PULSE.NG] At least six opposition and rights activists were abducted and tortured by unidentified assailants in Zimbabwe ahead of planned protests against worsening economic problems, rights groups charged Thursday.
[DAWN] Britannia’s former top finance official accused Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative government on Wednesday of steering the country toward a damaging no-deal Brexit that isn’t backed by Parliament or British voters.
Johnson, in turn, alleged that anti-Brexit UK politicians were collaborating with the Europe ...the land mass occupying the space between the English Channel and the Urals, also known as Moslem Lebensraum... an Union to block Britannia’s exit from the bloc.
Philip Hammond, a Conservative politician who stepped down as Treasury chief just before Johnson became prime minister last month, said "leaving the EU without a deal would be just as much a betrayal of the referendum result as not leaving at all." Hammond told the BBC that Johnson had moved from a tough negotiating stance to a "wrecking" one by insisting on changes to the withdrawal agreement between Britannia and the EU that the bloc would not accept.
He said that while he believed Johnson wanted a deal, "there are other people around him whose agenda is different" an apparent reference to advisers such as Dominic Cummings, one of the architects of the country’s 2016 decision to leave the EU.
Johnson has vowed that Britannia will leave the EU on the scheduled date of Oct 31 just 11 weeks away with or without a divorce deal. He is demanding the EU make major changes to the agreement the bloc made with his predecessor, Theresa May. The EU refuses to renegotiate, so a no-deal Brexit appears increasingly likely.
[PULSE.NG] Venezuela ...a country in Central America that sits on an enormous pool of oil. Formerly the most prospereous country in the region, it became infested with Commies sniffing almost unlimited wealth. It turned out the wealth wasn't unlimited, the economy collapsed under the clownish Hugo Chavez, the murder rate exceeds places like Honduras and El Salvador, and a significant proportion of the populace as refugeed to Colombia and points south... 's Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said Thursday the government would meet with Norwegian mediators in an effort to restart talks with the opposition aimed at resolving the country's political crisis.
Arreaza told news hounds in Caracas that the government was seeking changes to the talks mechanism before it would return to the negotiating table.
"There will be contact with the envoys and we will surely be able to reestablish the dialogue with a re-thought mechanism," the foreign minister said.
"We have to have a mechanism that guarantees peace and coexistence," he added, but gave no details of the changes the government were seeking.
On Wednesday, opposition leader Juan Guaidó ...Venezuelan politician, a member of the social-democratic Popular Will party, and serves as a federal deputy to the National Assembly representing the state of Vargas. In 2019 he was appointed by the Popular Will party to become the president of the National Assembly, after which he declared he was acting president of the country, challenging Nicolás Maduro's presidency and starting the 2019 Venezuelan presidential crisis.... revealed that Norwegian officials were in the country in a bid to restart the talks.
Negotiations to end the political crisis -- sparked when Guaido pronounced himself acting president in January -- began in Oslo in May.
But President Nicolás Maduro ...Commie el presidente para la vida of Venezuela, successor to Hugo Chavez. Nick is his country's attempt at producing a Muammar Qadaffy, except that even though his country's sitting on an enormous puddle of oil, he can't manage to get it out of the ground... called off the talks a week ago in response to new United States sanctions against his government.
Arreaza insisted that Maduro had merely "implemented a pause" in the talks and that they had not broken down.
[Jpost] North Korea ...hereditary Communist monarchy distinguished by its truculence and periodic acts of violence. Distinguishing features include Songun (Army First) policy, which involves feeding the army before anyone but the Dear Leadership, and Juche, which is Kim Jong Il's personal interpretation of Marxism-Leninism, which he told everybody was brilliant. In 1950 the industrialized North invaded agrarian South Korea. Twenty-one countries of the United Nations eventually contributed to the UN force opposing the invasion, with the United States providing around 90% of the military personnel. Seventy years later the economic results are in and it doesn't look good for Juche... fired two unidentified projectiles into the sea off its eastern coast on Friday morning, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.
[NPR] An epidemic of African Swine Fever is sweeping through China's hog farms, and the effects are rippling across the globe, because China is a superpower of pork. Half of the world's pigs live in China ‐ or at least they did before the epidemic began a year ago.
"Every day, we hear of more outbreaks," says Christine McCracken, a senior analyst at RaboResearch, which is affiliated with the global financial firm Rabobank.
McCracken and her colleagues now estimate that by the end of 2019, China's production of pork could be cut in half. "That's roughly 300 million to 350 million pigs lost in China, which is almost a quarter of the world's pork supply," she says. "It's a massive number." (This measures the reduction in pigs slaughtered annually, which is roughly twice the number of animals in China's swine herd at any one time.)
The estimate, McCracken says, is based on information from her company's clients in China, which include meat packers, companies that sell animal feed, and animal health experts.
African Swine Fever is not the same as "swine flu." This disease is harmless to humans. It can spread through contaminated pork products or the clothes of people working with infected pigs. It does not travel through the air, but it's long-lived and hard to get rid of ‐ which Chinese farmers are learning the hard way.
"They've had a hard time repopulating herds," McCracken says. "It's hard to decontaminate a facility in a short amount of time. Generally, it takes at least six months, sometimes three years, to decontaminate a site."
Up to now, Chinese consumers still are finding enough pork to buy. McCracken says that's mainly because many farmers slaughtered their herds early, out of fear of infection. In the past month or so, however, supplies have started to run short, and pork prices are now rising sharply in China.
In fact, people around the world are now starting to feel the effects.
With fewer pigs, China is importing less soy meal to feed them. That alone has been enough to push down global prices for soybeans, which means less money for farmers in Brazil and the U.S.
The effect on soybean prices may turn out to be modest. According to a preliminary analysis by Amani Elobeid, an economist at Iowa State University, and Miguel Carriquiry, at the University of the Republic in Uruguay, a 30% cut in China's pork production could reduce the price of soy meal by 3 to 5%. In an email to NPR, however, they noted that the analysis "is VERY preliminary and should be used with caution."
The growing Chinese pork shortage is good news, though, for pork producers in the rest of the world: China is now starting to import more pork, driving up prices.
McCracken says the epidemic is still going strong. "It's really hard to see how this is going to end," she says. "Though at some point there will just be better, more 'biosecure' facilities that have less of a chance of getting the virus."
African Swine Fever is present in wild pigs in Europe. European pork producers have managed to protect their commercial herds from infection through careful precautions, preventing any potentially contaminated food or clothing from entering the facilities where pigs live.
Almost half the pigs in China, on the other hand, came from hundreds of thousands of small, backyard operations, which have been particularly hard-hit by the epidemic. If those farms can't protect their animals from infection, they may not survive.
- Smithfield (US company with a China operation)
- Muyuan Foodstuffs
- Truein Agri
it is more than a food issue or an import/export issue; it hits at a very important part of the financial and economic structure of China-- of course since Banking in China is almost opaque, the problem of bad debt in this sector is almost completely unknown
Posted by: lord garth ||
08/16/2019 3:46 Comments ||
Shades of the opening farm scenes in Unforgiven
Posted by: Frank g ||
08/16/2019 8:19 Comments ||
Half of the world's pigs live in China
Hell of a joke potential there.
Betting Iowa pork is looking better and better. Or they can serve, say, fried lice.
Heard a different take - the ChinaPigApocalypse has radically reduced the demand for soybean (what? you thought it was all going into tofu?) so the reduction in imports from the US was making a virtue of necessity.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. retail sales surged in July as consumers bought a range of goods even as they cut back on motor vehicle purchases, helping to assuage financial market fears that the economy was heading into recession.
The upbeat report from the Commerce Department on Thursday, however, will likely not change expectations that the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates again next month as news from the manufacturing sector remains dour, underscoring the darkening outlook for the economy against the backdrop of trade tensions and slowing growth overseas.
President Donald Trump cheered the strong retail sales data, which came a day after a key part of the U.S. Treasury yield curve inverted for the first time since June 2007 and triggered a stock market sell-off. An inverted Treasury yield curve is historically a reliable predictor of looming recessions.
[The Hill] A federal watchdog alleges that top officials in the State Department's Bureau of International Organization Affairs harassed and mistreated staffers, according to an inspector general report published Thursday.
The report accused officials of engaging in "disrespectful and hostile treatment" of staffers, and alleges that officials harassed some staffers over suspicions that they were "disloyal" to President Trump.
The watchdog found that at least one top career employee was pushed out of her role for inappropriate reasons, while others had their duties stripped from them because of their superiors' political views.
The report claims Kevin Moley, assistant secretary of State for the department’s Bureau of International Organization Affairs, failed to prevent the alleged mistreatment in spite of multiple complaints. The document also cites numerous examples of alleged inappropriate behavior by Mari Stull, who previously was a senior political appointee in the bureau.
The two were accused of having "frequently berated employees, raised their voices, and generally engaged in unprofessional behavior toward staff," according to the report. The IG report also found that Moley and Stull treated employees in a "harsh and aggressive manner," engaged in "disrespectful and hostile treatment," and created a "negative and 'vindictive' environment."
"Raised their voices"? I'd fire the disloyal snowflakes
Posted by: Frank g ||
08/16/2019 8:14 Comments ||
You want a "harsh and aggressive manner," engagement in "disrespectful and hostile treatment," and the creation of a "negative and 'vindictive' environment"? Transfer them to the bureau for Intelligence and Research (INR).
Posted by: Whiskey Mike ||
08/16/2019 17:46 Comments ||
I am extremely encouraged by this. I hope the bureaucrats have a miserable time and take early retirements (I would prefer to see them fired/dragged through the street, but I'll take what I can get).
[DAWN] The Lahore High Court has ruled that an offence against human body is though compoundable but at the same time it is an offence against the State for which the State machinery has to take steps for the prosecution of the offender.
Justice Anwarul Haq Pannun made this observation the other day while dismissing the petition of a man challenging an order to exhume the body of his wife allegedly killed by accidental fire shot. Mother of the dear departed woman had secured the order for the exhumation from a judicial magistrate concerned of Shakargarh.
Petitioner Safarish Ali pleaded that a magisterial court had already dismissed an application for exhumation of the body filed by investigating officer of the local police as none of the legal heirs of the dear departed wanted autopsy.
The judge, in his verdict, dismissed the plea and noted delinquency on the part of the police for not holding an inquiry into the incident independently as required under section 174 of Code of Criminal Procedure (Cr.P.C) despite ordered by the magistrate.
Posted by: Fred ||
08/16/2019 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan
Very confusing. So the offense is ... the state of her body, or the body of evidence of said offense? Or a body that had lain in state?
Or a statement embodying a failed state whose body politic offends theeand if the body offends thee, pluck it out - or is that the wrong body of text, wrong Book?
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.