Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Scaramucci: First Fired by Goldman Sachs, Now the White House

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Were it not for the profanity-laced tirade that Donald Trump’s briefly tenured Director of Communications offered up to a New Yorker reporter, it might be considered a badge of honor to get fired from both the great vampire squid, Goldman Sachs, and by the President whose administration is firmly ensnared in Goldman Sachs’ tentacles.

Wall Street veteran and hedge fund titan, Anthony Scaramucci, who was fired yesterday after a 10-day stint as Director of Communications for Trump’s White House, told reporter Courtney Comstock in 2010 at Business Insider that he had been “fired from Goldman a year and five months” into his tenure there as an investment banker. Scaramucci was rehired by Goldman a few months later, but in a sales position.

Scaramucci’s ties to Wall Street are extensive, including a stint as Managing Director at Lehman Brothers, the iconic investment bank which filed bankruptcy in September 2008 during the height of the financial crisis.

Scaramucci founded SkyBridge Capital in 2005 and in 2010 it purchased a hedge fund of funds from Citigroup, the behemoth Wall Street bank that received the largest bailout in U.S. history during the financial crisis.

DARPA unveils gene editing infrastructure to build genetically engineered “super soldiers”

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by: Jayson Veley

 

In the Marvel comic books, Steve Rogers is a character that transforms from a rather weak and skinny man into a supersoldier with the help of gene editing technology. For decades since fans were officially introduced to Captain America in 1941, this fictional character has fascinated people throughout the country and across the world. Now, thanks to new technology and millions of dollars spent on research, it appears that you no longer have to live in a fictional world full of superheroes and villains to become a supersoldier similar to Captain America.

According to the official website for the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), “The Safe Genes program aims to deliver novel biological capabilities to facilitate the safe and expedient pursuit of advanced genome editing applications, while also providing the tools and methodologies to mitigate the risk of unintentional consequences or intentional misuse of these technologies.”

Recently, DARPA announced that it has assigned seven teams to fulfill the goals set forth by the Safe Genes Program in order to better understand how gene editing technologies work. If all goes well, the program could potentially help troops become immune from infectious disease, defend certain forms of wildlife against invasive species, and limit the spread of mosquitoes that carry diseases (Related: Genetically modified humans are now a reality in China.)

Over the next four years, DARPA is set to distribute $65 million amongst the seven teams, which include the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, North Carolina State University, UC Berkeley and UC Riverside.

DARPA says that each of these seven teams will pursue at least one of three overarching objectives, which includes: 1) the development of technology that can initiate and reverse genome editors inside of living organisms, 2) the development of drug-based countermeasures as a means of limiting the genome editing process in order to maintain genome integrity, and 3) develop technology that can erase unwanted genes and bring them back to their original state.

“Part of our challenge and commitment under Safe Genes is to make sense of the ethical implication of gene editing technologies, understanding people’s concerns and directing our research to proactively address them so that stakeholders are equipped with data to inform future choices,” said Dr. Wegrzyn, the manager of the Safe Genes program.

Dr. Wegrzyn added that it is difficult to draw a line between ethics and technology development when it comes to gene editing, but “we’re hopeful that the model we establish with Safe Genes will guide future research efforts in this space.”

Indeed, the ethics surrounding the debate over gene manipulation are questionable at best. While there would more than likely be many good things that come from gene editing, such as making certain people immune to infectious diseases, there is still the question of whether or not human beings should be messing with the genetic makeup of living organisms in the first place. Everything on this earth was created a certain way for a reason, and one could argue that it is not our place to be altering it just because we have the technology to do so.

FDA Urged to Investigate Hazards of Chemical Phthalates in Food Packaging

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Senator Chuck Schumer from New York issued a letter to FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on July 30, 2017, calling on the health regulator to launch a study into the consequences of using phthalates in food packaging. [1]

Earlier in July, a study revealed that boxed macaroni and cheese contain phthalates, including Kraft Mac & Cheese. Phthalates are a group of endocrine-disrupting additives in plastics, used to make them soft and flexible.

Phthalates also lurk in fast food packaging, such as burger wrappers, soda cups, and fry cartons. In addition, they are found in beauty and cosmetic products, as well as in other consumer and industrial products.

Source: Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

Studies have linked phthalates to:

  • Various cancers
  • Human reproduction and developmental problems
  • Damage to the male reproductive system
  • Birth defects
  • Behavioral problems in children
  • Miscarriages
  • Premature birth
  • Respiratory issues in children with bronchial obstruction, such as asthma. [2]

Schumer noted in his letter to Gottlieb that federal regulators have already banned 6 types of phthalates often found in “children’s toys and other child care products, like those to facilitate sleeping, feeding, sucking or teething.” [1]

He went on:

“To think that we have all this data on phthalate chemicals from doctors, scientists, health experts and other industries just sitting around, frozen like a beef patty and begging for the FDA to take it to the next appropriate level of scrutiny is worrisome for the consumer.

Read more: http://naturalsociety.com/schumer-probe-phthalates-food-packaging-4213/#ixzz4oVXKvHvV
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What Investors Can Learn From the Japanese Art of Kintsukuroi

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– What investors can learn from the Japanese art of Kintsukuroi or Kintsugi – art of repairing broken pottery with gold
– Investors and savers can protect their savings with gold

– Savers and investors are being punished by negative to low interest rates
– Global debt levels, stock bubbles and reduced liquidity will lead to crisis
– Reinforce cracks with gold prior to money pot shatters

Source: Wikimedia

Editor: Mark O’Byrne

Kintsukuroi or Kintsugi is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with gold and silver.

The Japanese like to consider it a way of not only repairing the item but also transforming it into something new which is pristine and has a new potential.

For the philosphers in the art world they like to ask how can something of such beauty be created from a shattered vase or bowl?

Our politics, markets and economy are broken. With each passing day we see more evidence of a globalised, interconnected world that is also increasingly politically and financially fragmented.

In turn this is raising tensions between and within countries. Especially between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots.’

We have seen this before, many times in history, when the greed of mankind and his belief in infallibility leads us to believe we can perform unprecedented financial experiments. The more we push on with the experiments, rather than learning from history, the bigger the cracks and damage.

Jim Rogers recently expressed his disgust at banks’s claims that had they not acted as they had in response to the financial crisis then things would be worse.

Rogers disagrees, all they have done is papered over and widened the cracks… “propping up zombie banks and dead companies is not the way the world is supposed to work. … It’s been nine years and we have nothing to show for it [economically] except staggering amounts of debt.”

In order for Kintsugi to transpire the artist must ‘see’ a cracked pot differently. A new perspective has to be taken. The pot is not broken, it is not useless instead it is something which has potential to become stronger and better.

We must begin to look at our economy in a similar light. Our savings are not useless, in the same way our economic system is not useless.

But they are weak in their current state, they should be made stronger rather than forced to take on more pressure.

The art of seeing differently

Last week, came the news that global debt levels were 327{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} of world gross domestic product (GDP), at $217 trillion in the first quarter of 2017. We have added over $120 trillion since the financial crisis.

William Shatner Slams SJWs – Says ‘Snowflakes’ “Stand For Inequality” And “Misandry”

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William Shatner, the actor who famously portrayed Captain James Kirk in the original 1960s run of Star Trek spoke out against his progressive critics, claiming that SJWs “stand for inequality” while defending his use of terms like “snowflake” and “misandry” – a phenomenon that angry feminists insist has been extinguished in modern society.

Shatner, a Canadian citizen who’s publicly empathized with the far-right and President Donald Trump, has repeatedly feuded with Trekkies who feel that he has turned away from the show’s culturally-progressive message (Star Trek made television history by broadcasting television’s first interracial kiss, between Shatner and castmate Nichelle Nichols). The actor often calls out examples of what he considers to be unwarranted attacks on men.

 

 

 

Shatner’s signature was notably absent from a February letter sent by the original Star Trek cast condemning President Donald Trump’s “racism and bigotry.”

At least one liberal critic accused the actor of “tarnishing” Star Trek’s legacy with his “alt-right language,” according to Gizmodo.

“‘It seems that Shatner has not so much misunderstood the source material than turned away from it,’ Manu Saadia, author of Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek.
‘Star Trek is the lone TV show that has carried the torch of equality, progress, and utopia in popular culture. To see one of its most famous ambassador using alt-right language should be a wake up call to fans,’ Saadia continued.

‘It is ruinous for the 50-year-old franchise, especially so close to the launch of its first new show in more than a decade. Shatner is known to be prickly and jealous of his status in Star Trek. Maybe he can’t stand that the limelights are now trained on a new, diverse crew?’ said Saadia.”

According to Saadia, the show tacitly endorsed socialistic policies, like the notion that wealth should be evenly distributed throughout the population.

Do We Need Trendy Terms to Encourage Recycling?

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I don’t know why the media has to come up with stupid terms for everything. Reading about sustainable living, every time I see the word “lifecycling” I feel like I am hearing nails on a chalkboard. Everything has to be trendy and new, so apparently, the word recycle is out. Now recycling is a lifestyle.

Lifecycling takes recycling to the next level; it’s a philosophy that embraces new, creative uses for products as a way extend their cycle, positively benefit your personal life and keep as much garbage out of landfills as possible.

Of course, I think recycling is great. I really love efficiency and hate waste, so reusing everything I can is pretty satisfying. But thriftiness is a big motivator. I take pride and find satisfaction in keeping my expenses a fraction of my overall income.

On the ten acre mini-farm I live and work on, there were a lot of random materials left when we moved in. We found a way to recycle almost everything.

One of our chicken coops is 90{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} wood that was left on the property, and the other 10{5f621241b214ad2ec6cd4f506191303eb2f57539ef282de243c880c2b328a528} was leftover wood from building a shed. I removed an old concrete walkway in front of the house and made a berm as a backstop for shooting. Old buried bricks were turned into a patio under the live oaks. I also lined some garden beds with more salvaged bricks and cinder blocks.

We compost the insane amount of leaves which fall off the huge oak trees and use the compost in the gardens. We are expanding out rainwater collection, and one structure is getting solar panels next week!

We used pallets to make a gate and the floor of an outdoor kitchen. In fact, the counter and sink for the outdoor kitchen were snagged for free off craigslist when someone threw them out. Craiglist is a great resource to find cheap or free raw materials for any number of projects.

My brother-in-law, who owns the mini-farm with my sister, works for himself buying used items at yard sales, thrift stores, and estate sales, and selling them on eBay. His whole business is centered around reuse, finding good items a new home, not in a landfill.

So even though I hate the term “lifecycling” I do love the concept. It’s just funny to me that it is being sold as a cool new movement of youngsters! Actually, it was the norm back in the day. People sewed and patched holes in clothing. Composting veggie scraps was a no brainer. Fences were even sourced from backyard lumber.

Recycling has the potential to free up a lot of capital. Since we find so many free and cheap materials, it means the mini-farm can grow that much quicker. Even things like buying used chicken processing equipment instead of buying it new meant that money could instead be spent on building a fourth chicken coop.

Haley: ‘No Point’ in Another Consequence-Free UNSC Meeting on NK Missiles; US is ‘Done Talking’

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The United States sees no point in holding an emergency U.N. Security Council meeting Monday on North Korea’s second long-range missile test in 24 days “if it produces nothing of consequence,” U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley said Sunday, after tweeting that the U.S. is “done talking” about the issue.

“North Korea is already subject to numerous Security Council resolutions that they violate with impunity and that are not complied with by all U.N. member states,” she said in a statement, following the test-firing Friday of what appears to have been an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Another resolution that does not significantly increase pressure on the Kim Jong-un regime would be “of no value,” Haley continued.

“In fact, it is worse than nothing, because it sends the message to the North Korean dictator that the international community is unwilling to seriously challenge him.”

“China must decide whether it is finally willing to take this vital step,” Haley said. “The time for talk is over. The danger the North Korean regime poses to international peace is now clear to all.”

North Korea’s KCNA news agency reported that the missile, identified as a Hwasong-14, had reached an apogee of 3,724 kilometers (about 2,313 miles) and flown a distance of 998 kms (620 miles) in 47 minutes and 12 seconds, before splashing down as planned in the ocean.

It also claimed that the test had reaffirmed the missile’s re-entry capabilities. A ballistic missile re-entry vehicle needs to be able to withstand the extreme heat encountered when it re-enters the Earth’s atmosphere. Pyongyang is known to have been testing heat shields for that purpose.

A previous, first ever-test of the same projectile on July 4 lasted 39 minutes, with the missile achieving an apogee of 2,802 kilometers (about 1,740 miles) and flying a distance of 933 kilometers (580 miles).

Friday’s missile landed in the sea west of Japan’s Hokkaido prefecture.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spoke to President Trump by phone, and said afterwards early Monday that China and Russia in particular “must understand how serious the situation is and step up the pressure” on Pyongyang.

“Together with President Trump we came to a full agreement on the need for additional measures,” Abe said. China is North Korea’s closest ally and Russia has also been reluctant to act against it at the U.N.

Although U.S. treaty allies Japan and South Korea are the nations most immediately threatened by Kim’s missiles, some proliferation experts believe the KN-14 capable in theory of reaching the United States.

A photo posted on an official regime propaganda website shows Kim Jong-un and military officials celebrating after an ICBM launch on Friday, July 28, 2017. (Photo: Uriminzokkiri)

(In Friday’s test the missile was fired in a steep upward trajectory, describing a high arc before splashing down almost 600 miles from the mobile launchpad. Experts say that with a flatter angle and more typical trajectory, the missile could reach much of the continental U.S.)

In a much-cited release, Union of Concerned Scientists co-director David Wright said based on current information the missile appeared capable of reaching the U.S. West Coast and major U.S. cities including Denver and Chicago, and possibly even Boston and New York. He did caution however that that assessment did not take into account the mass of the payload used in the test, compared to the mass of an actual warhead.

http://www.ucsusa.org/press/2017/north-korean-icbm-appears-able-reach-major-us-cities#.WX6aZOlLfIU

“The conservative range estimate of this North Korean Hwasong-14 mobile ICBM capability is around 9,500 km [5,900 miles] when put in an operational and energy efficient trajectory, proving most of the United States’ major cities are within range,” said the Missile Defense Advocacy Alliance in the U.S.