The Financial Times has published an anonymous article which calls for the abolition of cash

•September 3, 2015 • 4 Comments

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http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/0/159b17ca-47f3-11e5-b3b2-1672f710807b.html#axzz3kRs9b5Ri

The fact that people treat cash as the go-to safe asset when banks are teetering is heavy with historical irony. Paper money was once the symbol of monetary irresponsibility. But even as individuals have taken recent crises as reasons to stock up on banknotes, authorities would do well to consider the arguments for phasing out their use as another “barbarous relic”, the moniker Keynes gave to gold.

Already, by far the largest amount of money exists and is transacted in electronic form — as bank deposits and central bank reserves. But even a little physical currency can cause a lot of distortion to the economic system.

The existence of cash — a bearer instrument with a zero interest rate — limits central banks’ ability to stimulate a depressed economy. The worry is that people will change their deposits for cash if a central bank moves rates into negative territory. The Swiss, Danish and Swedish central banks have pushed rates lower than many thought possible; but most policymakers still believe in an “effective” lower band not far below zero.

With a recovery under way in most rich countries this may seem academic. The talk is now of when to raise rates. But the fear of the lower band is still causing damage. The dominant argument for beginning the tightening cycle is to have enough “ammunition” for a new stimulus when the next downturn comes. Removing the lower band would leave central banks well equipped to deal with a slowdown even from near-zero starting points.

The second feature of cash is that, unlike electronic money, it cannot be tracked. That means cash favours anonymous and often illicit activity; its abolition would make life easier for a government set on squeezing the informal economy out of existence.

It is in this spirit that Kenneth Rogoff, the former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund, has argued in these pages for abolishing high-denomination banknotes such as the €100 and €500 notes.

Electronic money also permits innovations to reward law-abiding businesses. Value added tax, for example, could be automatically levied — and reimbursed — in real time on transactions between liable bank accounts. Countries that struggle with tax collection could go a long way in solving their problems by restricting the use of cash. Greece, in particular, could make lemonade out of lemons, using the current capital controls to push the country’s cash culture into new habits.

The technological and practical obstacles for using cash have largely disappeared. In Scandinavian countries, cards are regularly used even for tiny transactions. Sweden reached “peak cash” almost a decade ago: the amount of currency in circulation has shrunk by more than a quarter since 2007, even though the population and economy are both larger.

The anonymity that cash uniquely affords is, however, an argument for keeping it as well as for abolishing it. It is not only criminals and money launderers who prefer cash. Especially in the post-Snowden era, many ordinary citizens legitimately want the option of not leaving digital footprints.

Fortunately some benefits of electronic money can be reaped without banning all cash outright. Cash could remain accessible but at a cost, so that its users pay for the privilege of anonymity — and remain affected by monetary policy. Dated banknotes could see their value as legal tender gradually fall over time; banks could be charged for swapping electronic reserves for physical cash and vice versa. The benefits of cash are significant — but they need not be offered for free.

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“authorities would do well to consider the arguments for phasing out their use as another “barbarous relic”, the moniker Keynes gave to gold.”

anonymous article eh?

“The technological and practical obstacles for using cash have largely disappeared.”

really?

“Cash could remain accessible but at a cost, so that its users pay for the privilege of anonymity”

oh..thats why you hate it..”anonymity”..of course..

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Pope Francis says priests can pardon women who have abortions but only during the Jubilee from December 8th 2015 to November 20th 2016

•September 3, 2015 • 6 Comments

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http://www.9news.com.au/world/2015/09/02/00/06/pope-calls-for-pardon-over-abortions

Pope Francis has called on priests to pardon women who have abortions, and the doctors who perform them, during the upcoming Jubilee year – overruling hardline traditionalists within the Catholic Church.

“I have decided, notwithstanding anything to the contrary, to concede to all priests for the Jubilee Year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it,” he said on Tuesday.

In a message outlining special measures for the Jubilee, Francis said he knew that while “the tragedy of abortion is experienced by some with a superficial awareness … many others … believe that they have no other option”.

The Argentine pontiff said he was “well aware of the pressure” that some women were under to abort, adding that he had “met so many women who bear in their heart the scar of this agonising and painful decision”.

The 78-year-old, who has repeatedly urged the church to show greater compassion, said priests should use “words of genuine welcome”, as well as making sure those involved were aware of “the gravity of the sin committed”.

Francis announced earlier this year a Jubilee year – traditionally a time for remission and forgiveness – which will run from December 8 to November 20 and be celebrated not only in the Vatican but in dioceses across the world.

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i am not going to debate the pros and cons of abortion..this article is to show how far away from catholic teaching this jesuit is going..he is an imposter imo..this is just another example..forgiveness is a great thing..kudos for that but this type of decree is to enhance the popes standing as the “progressive” pope only..

but heres the kicker..you only get forgiveness between the dates of december 8th 2015 to november 20th 2016..true story!

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China unveils its latest heavyweight contender in military drone race

•September 3, 2015 • 2 Comments

China-Rainbow-5

http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/1853872/built-kill-china-unveils-its-most-powerful-military

The Chinese military’s flagship drone Rainbow 5  made its debut on state television on Sunday,  showing off new weapons and the latest technology to “change the game in airstrikes”.

Rainbow 5, or Caihong 5 (CH-5), is the latest in a series of unmanned aerial vehicles developed by  China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation to hunt and kill in battle.

With a take-off weight of more than three tonnes and a wingspan similar to that of the United States’ Reaper drone, Rainbow 5 is China’s latest entry in the heavyweight military drones race  dominated by the US.

The Rainbow 5’s test flight was conducted “recently” at an undisclosed airfield in Gansu  province, state-run China Central Television reported yesterday.

The test flight comes  ahead of a massive military parade to be held in Beijing on Thursday  that will showcase cutting-edge technology.

For instance, with a one-tonne  carrying capacity – 2 1/2 times more than its previous model – the Rainbow 5 can lift off with  a wall-penetrating radar to identify and track targets inside a building.

The drone’s chief designer, Ou Zhongming, said  this kind of radar would change the way military drones were used in the country’s counterterrorism missions.

At present, Chinese drones cannot open fire until they receive confirmation from ground personnel on targets hidden within buildings.

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rainbow 5?

strange name for a machine of death..

“the Rainbow 5 can lift off with  a wall-penetrating radar to identify and track targets inside a building.”

nasty..

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Petraeus: Use Al Qaeda fighters to beat ISIS

•September 3, 2015 • 1 Comment

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http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/08/31/petraeus-use-al-qaeda-fighters-to-beat-isis.html

To take down the so-called Islamic State in Syria, the influential former head of the CIA wants to co-opt jihadists from America’s arch foe.

Members of al Qaeda’s branch in Syria have a surprising advocate in the corridors of American power: Retired Army general and former CIA Director David Petraeus.

The former commander of U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan has been quietly urging U.S. officials to consider using so-called moderate members of al Qaeda’s Nusra Front to fight ISIS in Syria, four sources familiar with the conversations, including one person who spoke to Petraeus directly, told The Daily Beast.

The heart of the idea stems from Petraeus’ experience in Iraq in 2007, when as part of a broader strategy to defeat an Islamist insurgency the U.S. persuaded Sunni militias to stop fighting with al Qaeda and to work with the American military.The tactic worked, at least temporarily. But al Qaeda in Iraq was later reborn as ISIS, and has become the sworn enemy of its parent organization. Now, Petraeus is returning to his old play, advocating a strategy of co-opting rank-and-file members of al Nusra, particularly those who don’t necessarily share all of core al Qaeda’s Islamist philosophy.

However, Petraeus’ play, if executed, could be enormously controversial. The American war on terror began with an al Qaeda attack on 9/11, of course. The idea that the U.S. would, 14 years later, work with elements of al Qaeda’s Syrian branch was an irony too tough to stomach for most U.S. officials interviewed by The Daily Beast. They found Petraeus’ notion politically toxic, near-impossible to execute, and strategically risky.

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use AQ to defeat IS?..lol..you created both..they are really saying, here is our pet dog..and here is our younger pet dog..lets put them in a cage and let the old dog beat up the young dog..and then they will all go off and eat and sleep in the same house under the same master..

“The American war on terror began with an al Qaeda attack on 9/11, of course. The idea that the U.S. would, 14 years later, work with elements of al Qaeda’s Syrian branch was an irony too tough to stomach for most U.S. officials interviewed by The Daily Beast.”

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Sunspot count now lower than during the Dalton Minimum

•September 3, 2015 • 1 Comment

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http://iceagenow.info/2015/08/sunspot-count-now-lower-than-during-the-dalton-minimum/

According to NASA, the sunspot cycle we are now passing through – Sunspot Cycle 24 – is the smallest such cycle since Cycle 14, which ended back in 1906.

That is incorrect, says reader J. H. Walker.

“The problem with NASA’s sunspot count is that these are inflated by every blemish and spot fragment due to the optics they use,” says Walker.

If you use the Landscheidt sunspot-counting method, which counts only those spots that can be seen by 40MM optics, you realize that the current count is less than Solar Cycle 5. That solar cycle began in May 1798 and ended in December 1810.

It also corresponded with the Dalton Minimum.

The Dalton Minimum, a period of low solar activity named after English meteorologist John Dalton, lasted from about 1790 to 1830, says Wikipedia.

Like the Maunder Minimum and Spörer Minimum, the Dalton Minimum coincided with a period of lower-than-average global temperatures. The Oberlach Station in Germany, for example, experienced a 2.0°c decline over 20 years.

The “year without a summer” also occurred during the Dalton Minimum.

“The NASA counting method bears no relationship to the methods used in previous Solar Minimums, says Walker. “Hence the comparison with 1906 SC14 rather than SC5 1798.”

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#ItsTheSunStupid

“the current count is less than Solar Cycle 5. That solar cycle began in May 1798 and ended in December 1810.”

there is a good reason nasa doesnt count them correctly..they might find out we are about to cool not warm?

“NASA’s sunspot count is that these are inflated by every blemish and spot fragment due to the optics they use,”

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Minecraft inventor hates being a billionaire

•September 3, 2015 • 2 Comments

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3215705/Minecraft-inventor-hates-billionaire-Swedish-programmer-Markus-Persson-claims-s-never-felt-isolated-selling-company-1-5bn.html

Minecraft inventor Markus Persson claims he’s ‘never felt more isolated’ since selling his company Mojang AB to Microsoft for £1.5billion.

In a series of a downhearted tweets this morning, the Swede spoke of how he disliked his new-found wealth and felt unchallenged and empty.

He wrote: ‘The problem with getting everything is you run out of reasons to keep trying, and human interaction becomes impossible due to imbalance.

‘Hanging out in Ibiza with a bunch of friends and partying with famous people, able to do whatever I want, and I’ve never felt more isolated.

‘In Sweden, I will sit around and wait for my friends with jobs and families to have time to do shit, watching my reflection in the monitor.’

Persson has a personal fortune of around £1billion, according to Forbes estimates.

He launched the hit computer game Minecraft in 2009, in which players can build an entire world using retro-looking blocks.

But the 35-year-old said he no longer wanted the ‘responsibility’ of owning such a global success, and sold his development studio Mojang to US giant Microsoft.

Last year he said he wanted to ‘stick to small prototypes and interesting challenges’, adding: ‘I’ve become a symbol.

‘I don’t want to be a symbol, responsible for something huge that I don’t understand, that I don’t want to work on, that keeps coming back to me.

‘I’m not an entrepreneur. I’m not a CEO. I’m a nerdy computer programmer who likes to have opinions on Twitter.’

This morning’s tweets went on: ‘When we sold the company, the biggest effort went into making sure the employees got taken care of, and they all hate me now.

‘Found a great girl, but she’s afraid of me and my life style and went with a normal person instead.

‘I would Musk and try to save the world, but that just exposes me to the same type of a******s that made me sell minecraft again.’

His next tweet, however, appeared slightly more upbeat. He wrote: ‘People who made sudden success are telling me this is normal and will pass. That’s good to know! I guess I’ll take a shower then!’

Mr Persson, who is known to gamers as ‘Notch’, was the majority shareholder of Mojang, controlling 71 per cent of the company according to its annual reports.

He has 2.46million Twitter followers and has become a reluctant celebrity through Minecraft’s success. He said: ‘I don’t see myself as a real game developer. I make games because it’s fun.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Markus_Persson

————

two things..i have no sympathy for a billionaire claiming hes is isolated and unhappy..

the other thing is that here is a great example of how money is not a key to happiness either..

unless you have young kids you most likely dont know how widespread the minecraft fad is..its huge..

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Harrods are letting police spy on me claims Julian Assange

•September 2, 2015 • 6 Comments

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PIC-O-THE-DAY-HARRODS-LONDON-LOGO-EVOLUTION-495x594

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3215645/Harrods-letting-police-spy-claims-Julian-Assange-WikiLeaks-founder-says-obtained-documents-revealing-Scotland-Yard-s-relationship-department-store.html

Julian Assange has accused Harrods of secretly helping police to spy on him in his embassy hideout.

The WikiLeaks founder has been holed up in the Ecuadorean embassy opposite the department store for three years.

In an interview, he claimed that Scotland Yard had developed a ‘relationship’ with Harrods, adding: ‘We have obtained documents from Harrods [saying that] police have people stationed 24 hours a day in some of the opposing buildings Harrods controls.’

The 44-year-old, who also fears he is being bugged, has lived at the embassy in London’s Knightsbridge since Ecuador gave him asylum in 2012.

The British Government wants to extradite him to Sweden under a European Arrest Warrant where he faces questioning over an allegation of rape made by a woman he met during a visit to the country in 2010.

No charges have been brought because he has not been interrogated by police. Prosecutors have run out of time to investigate Mr Assange on separate allegations of sexual assault.

Mr Assange says if he is sent to Sweden he will be extradited to the US, where he could face 35 years in prison for publishing classified documents related to US activities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harrods

Following denial that it was for sale, Harrods was sold to Qatar Holdings, the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatarin May 2010. A fortnight previously, chairman of Harrods since 1985, Mohamed Al-Fayed, had stated that “People approach us from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar. Fair enough. But I put two fingers up to them. It is not for sale. This is notMarks and Spencer or Sainsbury’s. It is a special place that gives people pleasure. There is only one Mecca.”

The sale was concluded in the early hours of 8 May, when Qatari Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thanicame to London to finalise the deal, saying that the acquisition of Harrods would add “much value” to the investment portfolio of Qatar Holdings while his deputy, Hussain Ali Al-Abdulla, called it a “landmark transaction”

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qatar..would they work with the UK police and US government agencies?..you already know the answer..

“he claimed that Scotland Yard had developed a ‘relationship’ with Harrods”

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