I need to reach a wider audience!
I need to reach a wider audience!
"All of life is a second chance." -- Michael Rivero
The global energy transition is off track to prevent the worst impact of the climate emergency, according to the head of the International Renewable Energy Agency, and a fundamental course correction is required to successfully pivot away from fossil fuels.
A report published by IRENA on Tuesday said an additional $35 trillion of investments in transitional technologies would be needed by 2030 to curb global heating to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
This temperature threshold refers to the aspirational goal of the landmark Paris Agreement.
A radical trans activist group along with a D.C.-based Antifa group will be gathering on April 1 at the Supreme Court to protest for the transgender community at an event called “Trans Day of Vengeance.” Trans identifying female Noah Buchanan and non-binary activist Tsukuru Fors are leading their group Trans Radical Action Network to D.C. and promoting the event through social media. Antifa group, Our Rights DC, joins the trans group to “stop trans genocide.” In a TikTok video by Buchanan, she states the event is about bringing back the phrase, “we’re here; we’re queer, and we’re not going anywhere.”
French authorities on Tuesday conducted raids in and around Paris in what they say is a possible tax fraud case that may have cost governments more than €100 billion ($108 billion).
A spokesperson for France's Financial Prosecutor's Office (PNF) said the raids, which began at 9:30 a.m. and were still ongoing at midday, targeted four French and one international bank on suspicion of money laundering and fiscal fraud.
The banks being investigated are: Societe Generale , BNP Paribas, Exane, Natixis and HSBC.
PNF representatives said the investigations are linked to legally dubious "cum cum" practices in which banks create overly complex legal structures as a way to allow wealthy clients to skip out on tax obligations for dividends.
Authorities say Societe Generale, BNP Paribas, BNP Paribas subsidiary Exane, Natixis and the British banking behemoth HSBC are suspected of aggravated tax fraud laundering. Moreover, BNP and Exane are suspected of aggravated tax fraud.
Tuesday's raids are linked to PNF investigations opened in December 2021.
A staffer for Sen. Rand Paul was stabbed and seriously injured in Washington, D.C., on Saturday and a suspect has since been arrested, according to police and Paul's office.
"This past weekend a member of my staff was brutally attacked in broad daylight in Washington, D.C.," Paul, R-Ky,. said in a statement to ABC News on Monday. "I ask you to join [wife] Kelley and me in praying for a speedy and complete recovery, and thanking the first responders, hospital staff, and police for their diligent actions."
Paul's office has not publicly identified the staffer.
National Public Radio has become a parody of itself.
NPR recently ran a news article about how the World Athletics Council, the governing body for international track and field competitions, will henceforth prohibit biological males who “identify” as females from competing in women’s sports.
The article had this line which, for readers with common sense, might produce a chuckle:
“At the center of the issue is whether transgender women athletes have a physical advantage over other female competitors, even after lowering their testosterone levels,” NPR reported. “But there is limited scientific research involving elite transgender athletes—which the council also acknowledged.”
Do biological men have a physical advantage over women? Is the sky blue? Are we going to need more studies to figure this out?
President Joe Biden opened up a speech Monday to celebrate Women’s History Month by ranting about his love of ice cream.
Biden was hosting an event at the White House to recognize the U.S. Small Business Administration Women’s Business Summit, announcing additional resources to help women small business owners and expanding the number of Women Business Centers networks.
“Thank you, my name is Joe Biden. I’m Dr. Jill Biden’s husband and I eat Jeni’s Ice Cream, chocolate chip. I came down because I heard there was chocolate chip ice cream,” Biden said. “By the way, I have a whole refrigerator full upstairs. You think I’m kidding? I’m not.”
New emails uncovered in the ongoing Missouri v. Biden litigation reportedly show that the Biden Administration’s censorship efforts extended to Facebook to censor private communications on its WhatsApp messaging service.
In recent months, the Twitter Files revealed an extensive and secret effort by the FBI and other agencies to censor citizens on social media. I testified on that effort. Democratic members oppose efforts to investigate the full scope of this effort and even denounced those calling for greater transparency as “Putin lovers” and apologists for insurrectionists and racists. Yet, the evidence of an extensive censorship and blacklisting effort by the Administration continues to mount.
Facebook (now known as Meta) is accused of working with the government to target citizens with dissenting views on Covid and the pandemic.
According to emails obtained through discovery, Biden’s Director of Digital Strategy Rob Flaherty pressed Facebook executives to be more aggressive with censorship. Flaherty reportedly objected that “I care mostly about what actions and changes you’re making to ensure you’re not making our country’s vaccine hesitancy problem worse…I still don’t have a good, empirical answer on how effective you’ve been at reducing the spread of vaccine-skeptical content and misinformation to vaccine fence sitters.”
Nikolay Patrushev, the secretary of the Russian Security Council, warned Monday that Moscow possesses weapons capable of wiping out an enemy, including the United States.
“Russia is patient and does not intimidate anyone with its military advantage However, it possesses advanced unique weapons capable of destroying any enemy, including the United States, in case of a threat to its existence,” Patrushev said, according to the Russian news agency TASS.
Moscow’s military doctrine allows the use of nuclear weapons if Russian officials believe Russia is facing an existential threat. Patrushev added that Russia would be able to respond to a pre-emptive nuclear strike launched by the US.
Opposition to Joe Biden’s proxy war to destroy Russia has entered the 2024 US Presidential election – from stage Right. And the growing anti-interventionist sentiment among grass roots conservatives and libertarians is alarming Establishment warhawks on both "left" and "right." They are furious.
Their anger boiled over when Tucker Carlson asked likely GOP presidential candidates for their positions on the cruel war steeped in the blood of Ukrainian proxies; he posted their replies on Twitter. There were only two who opposed the war, Donald Trump and Ronald DeSantis.
The announcement by Vladimir Putin over the weekend that Russia will deploy tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus marked a further escalation of potentially cataclysmic tensions over the war in neighboring Ukraine. As the Associated Press reported, "Putin said the move was triggered by Britain’s decision this past week to provide Ukraine with armor-piercing rounds containing depleted uranium."
There’s always an excuse for nuclear madness, and the United States has certainly provided ample rationales for the Russian leader’s display of it. American nuclear warheads have been deployed in Europe since the mid-1950s, and current best estimates say 100 are there now – in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey.
The US Air Force has awarded Raytheon a $320-million contract to produce and deliver 1,500 GBU-53/B StormBreaker air-to-surface “smart” munitions.
The work will be performed in Tucson, Arizona, through June 2027.
“Having StormBreaker in the warfighter’s arsenal provides unprecedented capability against moving targets, regardless of conditions,” Raytheon president of Air Power Paul Ferraro said.
The Israeli government is in crisis due to divisions over controversial plans to overhaul the country’s judicial system.
Tens of thousands of Israelis took to the streets yet again on Sunday night in unprecedentedly large protests that rocked the coastal city of Tel Aviv and West Jerusalem.
The demonstrations were triggered by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to fire his Defence Minister Yoav Gallant on Sunday evening after the latter expressed opposition to the prime minister’s proposed changes to the judicial system.
Thousands of mourners turned out in the occupied West Bank on Sunday to pay their respects to a Palestinian man who died in an Israeli prison last month, after their body was finally released.
Ahmad Abu Ali, 48, died in an Israeli hospital on 10 February following years of alleged medical negligence, The New Arab's Arabic sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reported.
The father of nine had various health problems related to his heart and diabetes and passed away around two years before he was due to complete his 12-year jail sentence.
"You shone bright Ahmed. You brought light on the country, Ahmed," his sister said upon receiving his body at his home.
"You lived honourably and died as a martyr."
Saudi oil giant Aramco announced on 27 March that it has signed an agreement with China for the building of an oil refinery and petrochemical complex in the far-eastern country’s northeast, aimed at supporting the growing Chinese demand for fuel and petrochemical products.
According to the Saudi newspaper Sabq, the total cost of the project will amount to $12.2 billion.
Construction is set to begin during the second quarter of this year, and the complex is scheduled to officially open by 2026. Currently, the project is awaiting the necessary administrative approvals.
In a statement, Aramco announced that it will be supplying 210,000 barrels of crude oil to the complex, which is being constructed in Panjin city, in China’s province of Liaoning.
Former Prime Minister Imran Khan’s party has slammed “incendiary remarks” by the country’s home minister against his political rival.
In an interview on Sunday with a local news channel, Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, the second-most powerful official in the government, issued what many say are not-so-veiled threats to Khan, 72, who since his removal from power last year has been demanding immediate elections.
Another Pakistani court on Monday ruled in defense of former Prime Minister Imran Khan, granting him protection from arrest as lawsuits mounted against him. Police have charged the ousted premier with incitement to violence in several cases when his followers clashed with security forces this month.
The latest reprieve for Khan comes as a political crisis roils Pakistan, pitting the former cricket star turned Islamist politician against the government of his successor, Shahbaz Sharif, and spilling into violence in the streets.
Khan was ousted through a no-confidence vote in Parliament last April. Since then, the 70-year-old opposition leader has had more than 100 legal cases filed against him, including on charges of terrorism, incitement to violence and graft while in office.
During the first few weeks of the war in Yemen, Muhammad Naji knew his family would be pushed to the brink.
As bombs rained down on the Yemeni capital Sanaa, his family, like millions of others, hunkered down in the hope of making it through nights marked by devastating air strikes.
As Saudi-led air attacks laid waste to residential buildings, mosques, markets, factories, schools and hospitals; families such as his survived on whatever they could - usually morsels of food, even mouldy bread.
Now, despite a recent lull in fighting, Naji once again finds his family struggling to survive.
China spent $240 billion bailing out 22 developing countries between 2008 and 2021, with the amount soaring in recent years as more have struggled to repay loans spent building "Belt and Road" infrastructure, a study published on Tuesday showed.
Almost 80% of the lending was made between 2016 and 2021, mainly to middle-income countries including Argentina, Mongolia and Pakistan, according to the report by researchers from the World Bank, Harvard Kennedy School, AidData and the Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
China has lent hundreds of billions of dollars to build infrastructure in developing countries, but lending has tailed off since 2016 as many projects have failed to pay the expected financial dividends.
The Iraq War was spawned by a deadly combination of political depravity and media complicity. Unfortunately, on the twentieth anniversary of the war, both elements of that conspiracy are being whitewashed. Instead, politicians and their pundit accomplices are prattling as if the Iraq war was a well-intentioned mistake, not a crime against humanity.
In the days after 9/11, when pollsters asked Americans who they thought had carried out the 9/11 attacks, only 3 percent of respondents suggested Iraq or Saddam Hussein as culprits. But President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney worked ceaselessly to convince Americans that Saddam was the 9/11 culprit. Official propaganda trumpeting the Saddam/al-Qaeda link was the linchpin for exploiting 9/11 to justify war. A February 2003 poll found that 72 percent of Americans believed that Saddam was “personally involved in the September 11 attacks.” Shortly before the March 2003 invasion, almost half of all Americans believed that “most” or “some” of the 9/11 hijackers were Iraqi citizens. Only 17 percent of respondents knew that none of the hijackers was Iraqi.
In his official notification of invasion sent to Congress (in lieu of a declaration of war) on March 18, 2003, Bush declared that he was attacking Iraq “to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.” Bush tied Saddam to 9/11 even though confidential briefings he received informed him that no evidence of any link had been found. Three years after the war started, Bush publicly admitted that Saddam had nothing to do with 9/11.
It has been eleven years since Lois Lerner presided over (and then apologized for) the IRS targeting of conservatives during the 2012 election.
But her "inappropriate... error of judgment" may just have been turned up to '11' as during the day when independent journalist Matt Taibbi was in Washington DC delivering testimony to the Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government on March 9, an IRS agent visited his home in New Jersey, leaving a note demanding he contact the agency within four days.
"Odd" indeed, Mr. Musk.
As The Wall Street Journal reports, Mr. Taibbi was told in a call with the agent that both his 2018 and 2021 tax returns had been rejected owing to concerns over identity theft.
The journalist has provided House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan's committee with documentation showing his 2018 return had been electronically accepted, and he says the IRS never notified him or his accountants of a problem after he filed that 2018 return more than four-and-a-half years ago.
He says the IRS initially rejected his 2021 return, which he later refiled, and it was rejected again - even though Mr. Taibbi says his accountants refiled it with an IRS-provided pin number.
Mr. Taibbi notes that in neither case was the issue “monetary,” and that the IRS owes him a “considerable” sum.
The Senate on Monday cleared a final procedural hurdle toward repealing two Authorizations for Use of Military Force (AUMF), setting the stage for a final vote on the bill this week.
Senators voted 65-28 to end debate on the measure to repeal the 1991 authorization for the U.S. invasion of Kuwait and the 2002 AUMF that paved the way for the Iraq War the following March. Sixty votes were required to advance the measure.
The European Union is developing proposals on what to do with assets of the Russian central bank that were seized by member states. According to European officials, the bloc may invest the money and give the returns to Ukraine.
Anders Ahnlid, a Swedish diplomat who leads the commission exploring what to do with the Kremlin’s money, told Politico that whatever decision is made will be without precedent. “There is a consensus among [EU] member states that it’s important to examine very, very carefully, what can be done under the instructions that we’ve been given, including that what is going to be done will have to be in compliance with EU and international law,” she said. “We are in an exceptional situation and probably any solution that we will come up with will be of a nature that hasn’t been there before.”
The diplomats believe the bloc will be able to legally invest the funds because Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is an “exceptional and gross violation” of international and humanitarian law.
Lockheed Martin has received a $474-million contract to supply Trident II submarine-launched ballistic missiles to the US Navy.
The deal is on top of the $581-million Trident II order that the American defense giant received last year.
According to the US Department of Defense, the contract would also benefit a foreign military sale to the UK.
Apart from the missile system, Lockheed will provide system support to the US Navy and the UK.
In an interview with Kurdish Rudaw published on 25 March, Bush and Trump administration official John Bolton stated that an independent Iraqi Kurdistan is in the interest of the US.
“I think an independent Kurdistan is in the interest of the United States. It’s hard to define exactly what its boundaries would be. But I think the state of Iraq has failed. I think certainly Kurdish territories in Iraq could be the basis of a new independent country.”
Bolton’s strong advocacy for the 2003 Iraq war, coupled with his support for an independent Kurdish state in what is now northern Iraq, highlights one of the key goals of neo-conservatives who conspired to launch the illegal invasion of the country with the world’s second-largest oil reserves.
The Army has ribbons for just about everything. And now, that extensive list of awards includes a recently unveiled ribbon given to eligible soldiers who refer a friend for a life of embracing the suck.
Those who participate in the Soldier Referral Program can qualify for the new ribbon as long as the referred individual attends Basic Combat Training.
Myanmar’s coup leader Min Aung Hlaing has pledged to deal decisively with “terrorists” fighting against his rule as the military put on an annual show of strength for Armed Forces Day.
The senior general delivered his remarks on Monday after soldiers marched in formation through a parade ground in the capital, Naypyidaw, backed by armoured vehicles, missiles and artillery as well as fighter jets and helicopters flying overhead.