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Old 2012-07-08, 20:22   Link #22421
Coldlight
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
Why is Japan so interested in Afghanistan? It's still one of the poorest places on earth with no oil or other obvious assets besides poppies. Is it just to make the Americans happy? Has this largess stimulated much opposition within Japan?
Weren't there reportedly massive, untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan? Maybe they're planning to tap that, especially the rare-earth elements essential to many technologies.
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Old 2012-07-08, 20:43   Link #22422
Vexx
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Exactly... rare earth minerals. Tap down into global interest in many regional conflicts and you'll find strategic resources that "must remain accessible".
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Old 2012-07-08, 21:38   Link #22423
SeijiSensei
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Originally Posted by Coldlight View Post
Weren't there reportedly massive, untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan? Maybe they're planning to tap that, especially the rare-earth elements essential to many technologies.
I read those reports as well. When I start to see the Karzai government sign contracts with foreign interests to begin mining, I'll give them more credence.
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Old 2012-07-08, 22:16   Link #22424
mangamuscle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
I read those reports as well. When I start to see the Karzai government sign contracts with foreign interests to begin mining, I'll give them more credence.
If Karzai had any staying power outside of Kabul he would have rake in the moneysigned the contracts long ago, you can rest assured that foreign companies will sooner or later (if they haven't already) make deals with local warlords to make clandestine mining operations, it is just as the diamonds of africa, they do not care how many local wars they end giving funds to.
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Old 2012-07-08, 22:34   Link #22425
Vexx
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Anyone paying attention to Barclay's explosion in the spotlight over in the UK? Well... that's peanuts to the corruption about to roll out onto the stage:

http://www.nationofchange.org/wall-s...als-1341753800

Quote:
“Suppose the bankers are manipulating the interest rate so they can place bets with the money you lend or repay them – bets that will pay off big for them because they have inside information on what the market is really predicting, which they’re not sharing with you.”
Quote:
be unflagging and unflinching in our demand that Glass-Steagall be reinstituted and the biggest banks be broken up. The question is whether the unfolding Libor scandal will provide enough ammunition and energy to finally get the job done.
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Old 2012-07-08, 22:58   Link #22426
SeijiSensei
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This week's Economist entitled its editorial on the LIBOR scandal "Banksters!" I was surprised they'd use a term more commonly associated with the Occupy movement.

Joe Nocera had an op-ed in Saturday's Times wondering why Americans don't seem to be paying the same level of interest to the LIBOR scandal as they did to the financial collapse in 2007. My own take is that rather than suffering from an surfeit of scandal, we're suffering more from an absence of meaningful prosecutions. When JPMorgan Chase can lose a few billion dollars and say it won't matter to their bottom line, institutional fines in the hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars (see GlaxoKline) won't change behavior. Only by assessing fines of that magnitude on the executives involved, the ones making tens of millions of dollars per year, or by sending some of them to prison, might we effect some change in behavior.
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Old 2012-07-08, 23:12   Link #22427
Xellos-_^
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
Anyone paying attention to Barclay's explosion in the spotlight over in the UK? Well... that's peanuts to the corruption about to roll out onto the stage:

http://www.nationofchange.org/wall-s...als-1341753800
consideringhow much both the dems and repubs were slobbering all over Daimon during the last hearing. I would put good money against it. Some how this will become the fault of big government and that we need less regulations and should leave the poor banks alone.
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Old 2012-07-09, 06:20   Link #22428
ganbaru
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Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
Some how this will become the fault of big government and that we need less regulations and should leave the poor banks alone.
It's never the fault of the big corporation, whatever they do, it's never their fault
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Old 2012-07-09, 08:13   Link #22429
GDB
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Originally Posted by Xellos-_^ View Post
consideringhow much both the dems and repubs were slobbering all over Daimon during the last hearing. I would put good money against it. Some how this will become the fault of big government and that we need less regulations and should leave the poor banks alone.
Yeah, that was ridiculous. Asking him how they should be regulating him and other such bullcrap. If they did it again, they'd probably ask him how they can better regulate the media so they don't announce such drivel.
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Old 2012-07-09, 09:41   Link #22430
Vexx
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Personally, I find the almost total blanket of silence about the Iceland Solution for the Bankster Heist instructive:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xt4Z3rm4r-4 (Young Turks Editorial)

http://itmakessenseblog.com/2012/06/...child-bankers/

http://www.dailypaul.com/241101/icel...schild-bankers

Sorry, I had to go Way Off Mainstream Media to follow this story in Iceland...
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Old 2012-07-09, 10:37   Link #22431
SeijiSensei
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South China Sea: Now it's Vietnam's Turn
Quote:
JUST as South-East Asian countries were heaving a sigh of relief that China and the Philippines appeared to be drawing back from confrontation in the South China Sea, new tension has arisen between China and Vietnam in the same stretch of ocean. In recent days the two countries stepped up their sparring over archipelagoes and oil rights nearby, even dropping hints of military resolve to back their rival claims. Few predict imminent conflict, but a revival of old animosities between China and Vietnam could yet open huge rifts within the region.
While tensions between China and the Philippines have cooled a bit since the spring, the Philippine government hinted on July 2nd that it might ask the US to begin using spy planes to monitor disputed regions in the Sea. As you can imagine, this wasn't well-received in Beijing. The Economist also points to the upcoming Chinese power transition scheduled for this fall as a possible arena for nationalist political contenders to press for more aggressive policies in the Sea.

Just as a reminder, China and Vietnam engaged in a naval battle over the Spratleys as recently as 1998, when over 70 Vietnamese sailors were killed by Chinese gunfire.

The Vietnamese and the Americans have been conducting talks for over a year now about forging a "strategic partnership." I found this paper particularly informative on the Vietnam/China/US triangle. Thayer argues that Vietnam does not really want to hitch its wagon to the Americans but use them to "balance" Chinese power in Southeast Asia. For those of us who studied European international relations in the 1870-1914 period this all sounds rather familiar.
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Old 2012-07-09, 11:22   Link #22432
Ascaloth
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So that's why my girl was telling me recently about how her countrymen have expressed nationalistic dissatisfaction with China, with lots of claims being thrown around about how China apparently wants to invade Vietnam. Huh. You know, I can hardly blame them.

It's not just Vietnam either; I can't reveal my sources, but Myanmar's recent political reforms and subsequent opening up, leading to closer ties with the United States? Yeah, it seems that Chinese pressure may have possibly been a contributing factor to that turn of events as well. It could very well be the case that economic factors were only a secondary consideration; I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out to be the case for the Philippines as well.

The way things are going, it's almost like China is recruiting the United States' strategic partners for them.
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Old 2012-07-09, 11:30   Link #22433
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ascaloth View Post
So that's why my girl was telling me recently about how her countrymen have expressed nationalistic dissatisfaction with China, with lots of claims being thrown around about how China apparently wants to invade Vietnam. Huh. You know, I can hardly blame them.

It's not just Vietnam either; I can't reveal my sources, but Myanmar's recent political reforms and subsequent opening up, leading to closer ties with the United States? Yeah, it seems that Chinese pressure may have possibly been a contributing factor to that turn of events as well. It could very well be the case that economic factors were only a secondary consideration; I wouldn't be surprised if it turns out to be the case for the Philippines as well.

The way things are going, it's almost like China is recruiting the United States' strategic partners for them.
China's PR slip-ups has given the Big Media we hate so much enough fuel to light a fire. What I worry about is that Big Media is playing such a great "team game" with SEA governments that it may encourage the latter to pass garbage like the TPP in return.
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Old 2012-07-09, 12:03   Link #22434
SeijiSensei
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ascaloth View Post
It's not just Vietnam either; I can't reveal my sources, but Myanmar's recent political reforms and subsequent opening up, leading to closer ties with the United States? Yeah, it seems that Chinese pressure may have possibly been a contributing factor to that turn of events as well.
Planning for a Chinese rail link to a new deep water port on the western coast of Myanmar have been underway for a couple of years now. It is rather intriguing that, just as China pushed hard to buy Myanmar's loyalty by big industrial developments like this one, Myanmar itself started moving, albeit slowly, in the opposite direction politically.

The linked article mentions the problem of the different track gauges used in China and Myanmar. This might sound like a technical issue, but it has important strategic implications. Right now the differing gauges provide protection against potential Chinese troop movements into or through Myanmar. Standardizing the rail network on the Chinese gauge removes this barrier.

Similar "gauge politics" are at work in northeast Asia. While China uses "standard" gauge, both Russia and Mongolia use the "Russian" gauge. New Mongolian rail developments will continue to be incompatible with Chinese standards despite pressures from international investors to build to standard gauge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by linked article
The company that now owns [Mongolian firm] Tavan Tolgoi, Energy Resources LLC, had been working with the German state-owned railway Deutsche Bahn AG, to build a railroad southward, to connect with the Chinese rail network. But that plan ran into resistance from Mongolia's political leaders, who feared that too great an economic dependence on China could leave them with less policy-making room for maneuver down the road. China controlled Mongolia for more than 200 years, ending with the collapse of the Manchu dynasty in 1911, and many Mongolians today remain deeply distrustful of China's intentions toward their country.
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Old 2012-07-09, 12:14   Link #22435
Solace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
I read those reports as well. When I start to see the Karzai government sign contracts with foreign interests to begin mining, I'll give them more credence.
Contracts? Why would they need those. Afghanistan and Pakistan are both well known money pits and it's not unusual for money to just "poof" with no trace.
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Old 2012-07-09, 12:27   Link #22436
mangamuscle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solace View Post
Contracts? Why would they need those. Afghanistan and Pakistan are both well known money pits and it's not unusual for money to just "poof" with no trace.
Just as it is historically recognized that the biggest news spin by Austria is to make the world believe Hitler was german, the biggest Bush jr. news spin is to make his constituents believe all that money was lost because of the corrupt iraqi/afgani goverments, I bet you a good chunk was placed in a swiss bank by the bush family & associates.
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Old 2012-07-09, 13:06   Link #22437
Tom Bombadil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
Planning for a Chinese rail link to a new deep water port on the western coast of Myanmar have been underway for a couple of years now. It is rather intriguing that, just as China pushed hard to buy Myanmar's loyalty by big industrial developments like this one, Myanmar itself started moving, albeit slowly, in the opposite direction politically.

The linked article mentions the problem of the different track gauges used in China and Myanmar. This might sound like a technical issue, but it has important strategic implications. Right now the differing gauges provide protection against potential Chinese troop movements into or through Myanmar. Standardizing the rail network on the Chinese gauge removes this barrier.

Similar "gauge politics" are at work in northeast Asia. While China uses "standard" gauge, both Russia and Mongolia use the "Russian" gauge. New Mongolian rail developments will continue to be incompatible with Chinese standards despite pressures from international investors to build to standard gauge.
Myanmar better have the same track standard with India, for otherwise, they are preparing for an Indian invasion.
As for Mongolia, I found any nationalistic stuff coming out of them funny since they are the ones who gave up their own written language for Cyrillic.
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Old 2012-07-10, 23:49   Link #22438
mangamuscle
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worst tuberculosis outbreak in the USA in 20 years
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Old 2012-07-11, 02:02   Link #22439
MeoTwister5
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Lol. They ignored it because they thought only the underclass got infected by M. tuberculosis. This is precisely the way the US government handled HIV, and everyone knows what happened next.

Why again did you vote those people into Florida office?
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Old 2012-07-11, 07:34   Link #22440
Roger Rambo
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Quote:
That treatment will not come cheap. The drugs to treat a simple case of TB cost only $500, but if a patient does not take them regularly and the strain becomes drug-resistant, the cost skyrockets to $275,000.
if there's any arguement for socialized medicine, it's this. People who get sick with something need to have it treated immediately, and not progress to something even more difficult/expensive to treat.
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