[FoxNews] A Mexican folk religion involving human sacrifice and devoted to "Holy Death" is growing in popularity among drug traffickers and violent criminals, prompting Texas officials and the Catholic Church to warn about honoring the so-called "Saint Death."
Authorities are speaking out about the religion devoted to La Santa Muerte, which translates to “Holy Death” and "Saint Death," that has gained popularity steadily since the late 1980s among Mexican-American Catholics.
“She’s not a saint. There is nothing good that can come out of praying to her,” Sante Fe Archbiship John Wester said in February. “We have a lot of saints who represent the teaching of Jesus Christ. This is an aberration.”
Clad in a black nun’s robe and holding a scythe in one hand, Santa Muerte appeals to people seeking all manner of otherworldly help, from fending off wrongdoing and carrying out vengeance to people seeking protection for their drug shipments against law enforcement.
Devotees often use Catholic prayers and set up shrines in "her" honor.
(Guardian) The number of people living in poverty, meanwhile, increased from 69 million in 2004 to 112 million in 2010, despite an average economic growth of more than 7%. In the same period, the number of millionaires in Nigeria increased by 44%.
"The overlap between political and economic power in Nigeria is near total," says Page. "Politicians often use businesses to siphon money from state coffers, and many business moguls have grown rich on the back of close relationships with top officials, juicy government contracts, or protectionist policies. Nigeria resembles the United States in this way ‐ but with less transparency and minimal independent scrutiny of what are often conflicts of interest." Emphasis added.
In 2014, a report by the former minister of finance, Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, found the Nigerian government had lost approximately 800bn naira (£1.9bn) to tax wavers and concessions to businesses and corporations between 2011 and 2013. The report concluded these wavers led to no measurable benefit for the Nigerian economy.
[Al Jazeera] Venezuela's opposition has called for a nationwide strike against President Nicolas Maduro, to protest against his plan to rewrite the constitution, ratcheting up tensions after an unofficial vote rejecting his proposal.
The 24-hour strike call, issued on Monday, was part of what the opposition called a "final offensive" aimed at forcing Maduro out through early elections before his term ends in 2019.
"We are calling all the country to take part in a massive and violence-free protest through a nationwide civic strike for 24 hours," said one leader in the opposition coalition, Freddy Guevara.
Posted by: Fred ||
07/18/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Commies
There are many Cubans in Venezuela supporting the Chavistas and stirring up trouble. They want to insure the crude oil keeps flowing to the Cuban refineries. Cuba's economy depends heavily on Venezuelan crude shipments under agreements started by the late President Hugo Chavez and Castro. In return, the island nation has provided Venezuela with Cuban doctors and other services (cough, cough, cough such as exporting the Cuban revolution). Recall that Venezuela, under Chavez, expropriated western oil companies in Venezuela.
[DAWN] Has Winnie the Pooh done something to anger China's censors? Some mentions of the lovable but dimwitted bear with a weakness for “hunny” have been blocked on Chinese social networks.
Authorities did not explain the clampdown, but the self-described “bear of very little brain” has been used in the past in a meme comparing him to portly Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Posts bearing the image and the Chinese characters for Winnie the Pooh were still permitted on the Twitter-like Weibo platform Monday.
But comments referencing “Little Bear Winnie” — Pooh's Chinese name — turned up error messages saying the user could not proceed because “this content is illegal.”
Winnie the Pooh stickers have also been removed from WeChat's official “sticker gallery,” but user-generated gifs of the bear are still available on the popular messaging app.
Comparisons between Xi and Pooh first emerged in 2013, after Chinese social media users began circulating a pair of pictures that placed an image of Pooh and his slender tiger friend “Tigger” beside a photograph of Xi walking with then-US President Barack Obama.
Posted by: Fred ||
07/18/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Commies
Even though not banned in the US, years ago when deportations of illegal Mexicans were higher, Tweety Bird stickers were seen on many vehicles driven by Mexicans as a symbol of illegals always on the run from the big black cat.
Only this isn’t the U.S. housing market circa 2007. It’s the U.S. auto industry circa 2017.
A decade after the mortgage debacle, the financial industry has embraced another type of subprime debt: auto loans. And, like last time, the risks are spreading as they’re bundled into securities for investors worldwide.
Subprime car loans have been around for ages, and no one is suggesting they’ll unleash the next crisis. But since the Great Recession, business has exploded. In 2009, $2.5 billion of new subprime auto bonds were sold. In 2016, $26 billion were, topping average pre-crisis levels, according to Wells Fargo & Co.
Few things capture this phenomenon like the partnership between Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Banco Santander SA. Since 2013, as U.S. car sales soared, the two have built one of the industry’s most powerful subprime machines.
Details of that relationship, pieced together from court documents, regulatory filings and interviews with industry insiders, lay bare some of the excesses of today’s subprime auto boom. Wall Street has rewarded lax lending standards that let people get loans without anyone verifying incomes or job histories. For instance, Santander recently vetted incomes on fewer than one out of every 10 loans packaged into $1 billion of bonds, according to Moody’s Investors Service. The largest portion were for Chrysler vehicles. More at the link
In 1999 Banco Santander merged with Banco Central Hispano, which had in turn been formed through the 1991 merger of Banco Central and Banco Hispanoamericano. The combined bank, known as Banco Santander Central Hispano, or BSCH, was designed to be a "merger of equals", in which the top executives of the two pre-existing firms would share control of the merged entity. Soon after the merger former BCH executives accused Banco Santander chairman Emilio Botín of trying to push his own agenda and threatened to take legal action. This post-merger disagreement was resolved when BCH executives Jose Amusátegui and Angel Corcóstegui agreed to accept severance payments, retire and pass control to Botín, at an expense to shareholders of €164M.
The large termination payouts generated negative press and Botín was eventually brought to trial on criminal charges of "misappropriation of funds" and "irresponsible management." However, in April 2005 the court cleared him of all charges, the €164M retirement payments made to the two former executives were legal, "made as compensation for the services provided to the bank." Also that year, the anti-corruption division of the Spanish public prosecutor's office cleared Botín of all charges in a separate case, in which he was accused of insider trading.
In 2007 the bank officially changed the official name back to Banco Santander S.A..
(above from Wikipedia.org)
Banco Santander SA has banks in many countries around the world. When fraud is rampant in a country, Banco Santander SA takes large hits, such as the Petrobras and contaminated meat sales both in Brazil.
The fallacy that these Spaniards believe most all Americans are good for a loan is the reason for such loose and fast approval is most likely the reason for the defaults.
The economic landscape in the US is changing drastically and unless Congressmen of all parties get their heads out of their asses soon, things will get more unstable.
Posted by: Black Charlie Snager3683 ||
07/18/2017 3:11 Comments ||
I think it's different with student loans because there is no collateral, no car or house that can be repossessed and resold. IIRC, I read an article recently to the effect that if you have outstanding student loan debt they will take it out of your Social Security. One way or another, somebody is going to get the money. Somebody might get the shaft, typically the taxpayers as in the 2008 bailout, but somebody else will get the money. It doesn't just disappear.
Posted by: Abu Uluque ||
07/18/2017 18:28 Comments ||
How does the Subprime Student Loan meltdown grab you?
Personally, I'm looking forward to picking up a cheap Something-Studies major to do chores around the house for next to nothing.
[Daily Caller] The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will lay off more than 1,200 employees over the next two months by offering buyouts, documents obtained by E&E News indicate.
E&E News obtained an email from the National Treasury Employees Union to its members at EPA stating EPA plans to buy out 1,227 positions, 655 of which will be from agency headquarters in Washington, D.C. EPA employees could apply for buyouts starting last Thursday and must submit their decisions by July 26. The layoffs will occur over the next two months.
EPA will offer employees up to $25,000 in cash in exchange for them leaving. This is a standard practice for federal employees that allows them to retire early and still qualify for full benefits.
The largest number of buyouts, 183, will come from the Office of Research and Development. EPA will also offer buyouts to 98 employees at the Office of Administration and Resource Management, and make the same offer to 94 workers at the Office of Land and Emergency Management.
EPA will also offer buyouts to eligible employees at regional offices spread through the country. The email indicated EPA is expected to offer more buyouts after the initial 1,200.
Paying EPA employees to leave their jobs isn’t anything new. Under former President Barack Obama, the EPA paid more than $11 million in incentives to compel 436 employees to voluntarily leave their jobs in 2014. This was done to reduce payroll expenses.
Remember during the 'oughts' and the rotations to the ME, the Army finally got authorized up to 530,00 or so. Now its back down to 480,000. How about using that as a slide for cutting the other departments?
[DAWN] As the Supreme Court resumed hearing the Panamagate case on Monday, the Sharif family submitted its objections to the report prepared by a joint investigation team (JIT) that probed its financial history and claims to have found glaring discrepancies in the family's sources of income and their actual wealth.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif ... served two non-consecutive terms as prime minister, heads the Pakistain Moslem League (Nawaz). Noted for his spectacular corruption, the 1998 Pak nuclear test, border war with India, and for being tossed by General Musharraf... 's lawyer Khawaja Haris, in the objections, dismissed the JIT report as "eyewash" based on "mala fide" intentions.
"The entire investigation was a farce and an eyewash and was undertaken with a predisposed mind to malign and implicate the respondents in some wrongdoing or the other," the objections said.
A copy of the document detailing the objections, obtained by DawnNews, says that the JIT did not share its evidence with the defendants while recording their statements, therefore depriving them of a chance to "explain their position", which it termed a violation of their basic rights.
Posted by: Fred ||
07/18/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan
[Free Beacon] The Trump administration is expected to ratchet up pressure on Iran with a slew of new sanctions targeting the Islamic Republic's illicit ballistic missile program and regional support for terrorism as the landmark Iranian nuclear deal hits its two-year anniversary, according to senior U.S. officials who deemed Iran in violation of the agreement's "spirit."
News of the new sanctions comes on the same day that Iranian military leaders threatened attacks on U.S. forces and bases in the Middle East should America move forward with new sanctions, particularly ones targeting the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, or IRGC.
The new sanctions are part of a larger White House effort to counter Iran's massive military buildup and rogue militant activities across the Middle East, specifically in Syria, where Iranian-backed forces have launched a series of direct attacks on American forces in recent weeks.
U.S. official dubbed Iran "the most dangerous threat to U.S. interests" and promised a series of new efforts both militarily and policy oriented to combat the Islamic Republic's illicit activities.
Good. Upsetting as the thought is, once the NSA and CIA are cleaned out it will be different, but so long as they are warring against President Trump we need a service we can trust to tell the truth.
[NationalDefense] After what one senior official called "25 years of inattention," the Defense Department is pushing ahead to make its defensive and offensive electronic warfare capabilities more robust.
"There is an appreciation on the dependency of our electronic warfare capabilities [and] to make sure that the force -- all the platforms -- are survivable. I think that appreciation is very real and very substantial," William Conley, deputy director of electronic warfare in the office of the undersecretary of defense for acquisitions, technology and logistics, said during a recent Mitchell Institute speech.
"The foot is fully on the gas pedal" when it comes to catching up on EW capabilities, he said.
Electronic warfare is among the fields that the Pentagon has identified as part of the "third offset" -- a collection of battlefield technologies that the U.S. military must master in order to leap ahead of potential adversaries.
In the wake of a Defense Science Board report on the military’s electronic warfare shortcomings, Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert O. Work created an electronic warfare executive committee comprising high-level military leaders who meet once per month with the goal of reversing the "inattention."
The July 2015 report, "21st Century Operations in a Complex Electromagnetic Environment," concluded that the United States military was "no longer the overwhelming leader in these technologies." The neglect set in after the end of the Cold War and with the perception that advanced threats had all but disappeared, it said. Continues. Long-ish article, worth the visit, imho.
Posted by: Vast Right Wing Conspiracy ||
07/18/2017 00:00 ||
Top|| File under:
So it takes a septuagenarian to rub Congress' nose in it hard enough for them to figure it out?
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.