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Old 2012-03-01, 05:28   Link #19901
SaintessHeart
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Join Date: Nov 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganbaru View Post
Putin says foes plan dirty tricks to tarnish Russian vote
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...81S1VH20120229
Seem to be than he will claim than the electoral frauds than his party will do, will be made from his opponents.
How much did Gazprom pay to keep him in power and protect their gushers in Dagestan?

I'd say the guys behind WTI paid just as much to their own politicians.
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Old 2012-03-01, 19:03   Link #19902
ganbaru
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Conservative activist Andrew Breitbart dead at 43
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8201AV20120301
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Old 2012-03-02, 01:27   Link #19903
flying ^
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganbaru View Post
Conservative activist Andrew Breitbart dead at 43
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...8201AV20120301

man i was like... W-T-F with (with jaw-dropping) when they said this morning that he died of 'natural causes'. Why would they announce that it was natural before a toxicology report on the autopsy
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Old 2012-03-02, 03:07   Link #19904
flying ^
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Otakus in America better brace for impact and fallout... AAAND pray this doesn't get CNN/FOX news coverage

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/foru...ld-Pornography
http://www.freep.com/article/20120301/NEWS03/120301054/

Word on the internets is that this guy's well known around /a/ with his waifu, and he has loyal followers on his twitter/facebook/tumblr accounts.

Last edited by flying ^; 2012-03-02 at 03:18.
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Old 2012-03-02, 03:52   Link #19905
Mr. DJ
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I don't have enough facepalm for how stupid that guy is.
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Old 2012-03-02, 03:59   Link #19906
flying ^
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. DJ View Post
I don't have enough facepalm for how stupid that guy is.
wait 'till you read a few pages from court records (it's somewhere in Sankaku)

i'm afraid of what's gonna happen after you pick up a brick
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Old 2012-03-02, 04:25   Link #19907
ganbaru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flying ^ View Post
wait 'till you read a few pages from court records (it's somewhere in Sankaku)

i'm afraid of what's gonna happen after you pick up a brick
No danger about that...
That's one guy than it's probably better keep out of the streets, on many levels.


Senate rejects Republican birth control challenge
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82005F20120301
That was close, 51-48.
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Old 2012-03-02, 04:30   Link #19908
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganbaru View Post
Senate rejects Republican birth control challenge
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82005F20120301
That was close, 51-48.
That it was close at all I find utterly pathetic - the question is whether the women voters will keep the recent litany of anti-female rampant misogyny in their heads when they vote this fall.
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Old 2012-03-02, 04:40   Link #19909
ganbaru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
That it was close at all I find utterly pathetic - the question is whether the women voters will keep the recent litany of anti-female rampant misogyny in their heads when they vote this fall.
Probably not, and given than a good part of the electorat simply vote for a party (and always the same) insted of a quandidat, do than it's less likely to influence their votes.
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Old 2012-03-02, 23:27   Link #19910
ganbaru
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James Q. Wilson, 80, co-author of ‘Broken Windows’ community policing strategy, died today
http://www.boston.com/Boston/metrode...lDI/index.html
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Old 2012-03-03, 01:29   Link #19911
SaintessHeart
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A real-life Sam Fisher from Russia :

Insight: In Russia, a graft-buster's mission impossible

Quote:
(Reuters) - Wounded in Afghanistan and an 18-year veteran of Russia's elite Alfa counter-terrorist forces, Sergei Vasilenko considers himself a patriot.

Which is why, when his bosses at the Federal Security Service - successor to the Soviet KGB - asked him in 2010 to investigate corruption, he jumped at the chance.

The problem, Vasilenko now says, was that his new chiefs at the Federal Tax Service didn't want him to do his job properly. Vasilenko's experience opens a window into what even Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, bidding for a third Kremlin term, calls Russia's "systemic" corruption. It's a malaise that Putin's political opponents say has flourished during the prime minister and former president's 12 years as Russia's most powerful leader.

Vasilenko says his probe, into suspected fraud involving tax officials in Moscow, met a wall of silence and he was soon out of a job. The Federal Tax Office said it had investigated Vasilenko's allegations but declined further comment.

Now the former soldier works with Analysis and Security, a local anti-corruption campaign group run by former tax officials, security professionals and managers of firms that have been on the wrong end of the kind of shakedowns the group seeks to expose.

"I fought, was wounded and decorated, and it has come to this?" Vasilenko said at Analysis and Security's cramped, unmarked office in a nondescript building on Moscow's Leningradsky Prospekt. "I want to make a difference."

GIVING UP THE FIGHT

Senior Russian government officials admit that tax, customs and financial fraud cost the country tens of billions of dollars a year, much of which leaves Russia in the form of capital flight. Net capital outflows from Russia totaled $84 billion last year, the second-highest in the 20 years since the breakup of the Soviet Union and nearly 5 percent of gross domestic product.

The outflows show "investors believe that the Russian state has given up the fight against corruption," said Sergei Guriev, rector of Moscow's New Economic School.

"The Russian state is not capable of solving problems - it is the problem itself."

Guriev's comments, made to a recent financial conference at which Putin spoke, reflect growing dismay among Russia's educated, urban citizens that has fueled large-scale protests over alleged fraud in last December's parliamentary election.

Putin has promised a cleanup but protests continue, with slogans demanding the departure of the ruling clique of "crooks and thieves". Analysis and Security doubts the demonstrations will achieve much and focuses instead on 'outing' corrupt officials.

"We just keep hitting on the same spot until we get a result," says Ruslan Milchenko, a former tax policeman who heads the group. For funding, it relies on firms it helps out of tight spots; it receives no foreign donations.

ONE DAY IN THE LIFE

Russia has a reputation for authoritarian rule, but it is the country's liberal corporate law that makes it possible for one of the best-known swindles, the value-added tax (VAT) scam, to work.

Shell companies - known as odnodnevki, or 'one-day' firms - can be quickly registered in Russia in the names of convicted criminals or using stolen passport data, corruption experts say. The companies take advantage of the fact Moscow alone has 50 tax offices. Russia has 89 regions - each with 30-50 inspectorates.

The shells file fraudulent claims for VAT rebates on goods and services that are never supplied, and turn the proceeds into cash by a range of laundering methods. They then re-register in another tax district to evade investigators.

Such one-day firms spirited an estimated $33 billion in ill-gotten gains out of Russia last year, with a similar sum illegally laundered inside the country, according to the findings of a government investigation presented last month by First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov to President Dmitry Medvedev.

"This has a negative impact on the country's economic development, acts as a deterrent to investment and creates a serious threat to national security," Zubkov said.

In his 2010 report to his superiors, a copy of which was seen by Reuters, Vasilenko wrote that officials in one Moscow tax office had used the scam to carry out "clearly criminal" schemes to cheat the state of at least $100 million. The tax office - the 28th inspectorate - had approved VAT rebates of at least 500 million roubles ($17 million) apiece to seven firms, six of which then switched their tax residency to Tver region.

Vasilenko reported that the companies that moved to Tver had no real business activity, only a handful of staff, and could provide no evidence that they had shipped any stock. The firms then merged and moved again, effectively disappearing.

The 28th tax inspectorate alone approved illegal rebates of 5-10 billion roubles a year, Vasilenko wrote in a separate letter to his former superiors, also seen by Reuters.

Vasilenko says his bosses were not interested in his findings, and he was fired at a meeting with the head of the Federal Tax Service, Mikhail Mishustin. "Mishustin just told me: That's it," says Vasilenko.

The Federal Tax Service declined to comment on how Vasilenko was fired.

"In 18 years of service in Alfa, I learned to be the sharp blade of the sword of state, to feel the pain of hostages more strongly than my own and to put the interests of society first," he wrote in the letter to his former bosses.

"I received military decorations; I lay in hospitals. But after three months' service in the Federal Tax Service I came to doubt strongly that this country, whose interests I defended, values its citizens."

The head of the 28th tax inspectorate at the time, Olga Stepanova, received a mild reprimand in the case, Vasilenko says. She moved in late 2010 to a job in the procurement section of the Defense Ministry, but has since resigned.

Stepanova's lawyer, Larisa Move, said she had not heard Vasilenko's allegations before and declined to comment on them.

STILL IN BUSINESS

The 28th tax inspectorate was at the centre of the most notorious recent alleged fraud involving Russian officials: the case of investment fund Hermitage Capital.

London-based Hermitage, once the largest foreign portfolio investor in Russia, alleges that dozens of Russian officials were involved in an operation in 2007 to seize its company seals and file a fraudulent tax rebate for $230 million.

Hermitage's lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, investigated the case and was arrested in late 2008 by the Interior Ministry officials he suspected of the alleged fraud. He was pressured while in detention to confess that he had stolen the money, says Hermitage.

Magnitsky's health deteriorated and, despite repeated requests, he was denied treatment for abdominal pains, diagnosed as pancreatitis, cholecystitis and gallstones requiring surgery, according to Hermitage. He died in November 2009, aged 37, after what Hermitage says was a severe beating - a finding confirmed by Medvedev's human rights council.

Medvedev, reviewing the council's report last July, said "some crimes were committed" in the "very sad" Magnitsky case. These conclusions were rejected outright by the Interior Ministry.

"There are 60 people who are responsible, one way or another, either directly or indirectly, in the death of Sergei Magnitsky. We all know who they are," Hermitage founder Bill Browder, a British national, told Reuters.

"The Russian government is protecting them and none of them have been prosecuted."

The Interior Ministry and Prosecutor's Office found no evidence of wrongdoing in Magnitsky's death. Some of the officials named by Hermitage were promoted and received state honors. Interior Ministry investigators plan to seek a posthumous conviction of Magnitsky for theft, Hermitage now says.

Stepanova's lawyer said her client "may have" signed off on the Hermitage tax rebate on the instruction of her superiors, but denied she had any role in the tax fraud alleged by Hermitage, or in the death of Magnitsky.

BREAKING THE BONDS

Putin has responded to the groundswell of public anger over corruption by promising judicial reforms to "break the accusatory bonds" of law enforcement, prosecutors and courts.

"We have to eliminate all the rudiments of Soviet justice from criminal law, all the hooks that make it possible to turn a business dispute into a criminal case against one of the participants," Putin wrote in an opinion article last month.

His critics say it is Putin himself who gave a green light to officials to shake down business through the state-driven breakup of oil major Yukos in the mid-2000s.

Yukos, once Russia's top oil firm, was bankrupted by back-tax claims that exceeded its earnings. Its prime assets were bought at auction by state oil firm Rosneft.

Yukos's main owner, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, was convicted of fraud in 2005 in what many viewed as a punishment for daring to challenge Putin politically.

Oligarch-turned-politician Mikhail Prokhorov, running on a liberal platform against Putin for president, says the Yukos case and jailing of Khodorkovsky set "a very bad precedent".

"A lot of small businessmen suffered from the same methods all over the country," he told Reuters. "It was a key story for the lower part of policemen, or judges, or ex-KGB guys to do the same."

Putin has rejected criticism over the Yukos case, saying of Khodorkovsky that "a thief should sit in jail". He made the comments in late 2010, just before Khodorkovsky was convicted for a second time and his jail term extended to 2017.

The Interior Ministry's Economic Security Department, which has faced widespread allegations that it obstructed corruption investigations, was dissolved last summer on Medvedev's order.

It was replaced by the Main Directorate for Economic Security and Action Against Corruption, which has achieved some notable busts.

The department's new chief, Major-General Denis Sugrobov, fired 40 percent of the old staff after they failed background checks. He has also tightened discipline.

"I am responsible for every colleague," he told Kommersant newspaper in a recent interview.

"Even if a low-ranking staffer who worked here for a couple of months is brought to criminal justice, that automatically reflects on me. That's how it should be."

Analysis and Security said Sugrobov is a strong investigator. But the group doubts he will be able to tackle corruption at the highest level.

"He's the only one who has declared open war against corruption," said Milchenko, the head of the campaign group. "But he can't work against the whole system. He can only take action if he is allowed to."
__________________

When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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Old 2012-03-03, 04:29   Link #19912
ganbaru
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Join Date: Dec 2007
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Obama says not bluffing on Iran military option
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82108520120303
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Old 2012-03-03, 04:36   Link #19913
AnimeFan188
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganbaru View Post
Obama says not bluffing on Iran military option
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82108520120303
But that's exactly what he'd say if he *were* bluffing..........
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Old 2012-03-03, 04:39   Link #19914
Ascaloth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnimeFan188 View Post
But that's exactly what he'd say if he *were* bluffing..........
Well that's what he'll want you to think.
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Old 2012-03-03, 23:29   Link #19915
ganbaru
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Betweem wisdom and insanity
China boosts defense budget by 11.2 percent for 2012
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82302O20120304
Are they getting close of what Japan spend for their SDF ?
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Old 2012-03-04, 01:19   Link #19916
Ithekro
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Age: 36
The SDF-1 isn't ready yet.
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Old 2012-03-04, 04:35   Link #19917
Tom Bombadil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ganbaru View Post
China boosts defense budget by 11.2 percent for 2012
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...82302O20120304
Are they getting close of what Japan spend for their SDF ?
Lol, let me do the math here.

Here is the data:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-17249476

US: $739.3bn
China: $106bn
UK: $63.7bn
Russia: $52.7bn
India: $31.9bn


UK GDP in 2011 is $2.480 trillion


63.7 / 2480 = 0.0256854839

GDP of China in 2011 is $7.301 trillion
106 / 7301 = 0.0145185591
Let's go to the extreme and assume that BBC is right, that China spend twice as much as disclosed on defense, that gives
0.0290371182

OK, so that's around 0.34 percent higher for defense spending compared with size of the economy.
I hope I don't need to calculate defense per capita or defense per territorial mass.
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Last edited by Tom Bombadil; 2012-03-05 at 12:30.
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Old 2012-03-04, 04:47   Link #19918
SaintessHeart
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Regardless of the numbers, I think the expenditure seems more on countering the 7th Fleet, with Taiwan and the South-Eastern Seas in particular. They seem to be prepared in politically taking over the South China Sea regions through a "show-of-force", and pushing the SEA territories to switch allegiances. What the PLA makes up for its lack of technology is with its incredible firepower and manpower, allowing it to wage a war of attrition. The Korean War is a good example, they could be considered single-handedly pushing back NATO and what is left of the South Korean army back to the 38th Parallel.

What makes it actually worse is that both China and US have internal political issues now, i.e changeover of leadership. If both sides elect assholes who are inhesitant to fire salvoes of missiles then claim it to be "territorial protection", we are all screwed.

One of the commentators on Reuters made a good point :

Quote:
It is worth keeping in mind that China manufactures much of it’s own equipment and goods and at a cost less than half what the U.S. pays to do the same.
So that amount of money actually means alot more hardware than one could produce in US. Where is another NAM when you need one?
__________________

When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.

Last edited by SaintessHeart; 2012-03-04 at 04:59.
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Old 2012-03-04, 05:09   Link #19919
Tom Bombadil
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
Lovely. Now Singaporeans are going to be called "dogs" by China FTs again for having political relations to US.

Regardless of the numbers, I think the expenditure seems more on countering the 7th Fleet, with Taiwan and the South-Eastern Seas in particular. They seem to be prepared in politically taking over the South China Sea regions through a "show-of-force", and pushing the SEA territories to switch allegiances.
Lol, yes, there is certainly a sense of keeping up with the world in modernizing the wares. Those articles are generally quite hilarious to read because most time, they spread the China threat theory while slyly remark the western equipments are far more superior. Kind of self-contradictory, don't ya think?

As for your remark, if China is able to "force" the SEA nations to swtich allegiance with the only a fraction of what US spends, then probably the Chinese leaders should open up a management school for the US senators. The US will certainly want the "secrete formula" for doing more with less.
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Old 2012-03-04, 05:22   Link #19920
SaintessHeart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Bombadil View Post
Lol, yes, there is certainly a sense of keeping up with the world in modernizing the wares. Those articles are generally quite hilarious to read because most time, they spread the China threat theory while slyly remark the western equipments are far more superior. Kind of self-contradictory, don't ya think?

As for your remark, if China is able to "force" the SEA nations to swtich allegiance with the only a fraction of what US spends, then probably the Chinese leaders should open up a management school for the US senators. The US will certainly want the "secrete formula" for doing more with less.
Would the US want that? I don't think so, because it is "Un-American" .

Besides it is no secret to how China manages that rate of manufacture despite adopting the same technical principles of assembly lines and capitalism from US - underwaged labour, combined with the valuation of the yuan. Easy for the workers to buy domestic products, but hard for them to buy imports. In fact, that is economically unsustainable with the rich-poor divide widening alongside inflation as the rich consume more combined with middle-class consumption, drive up prices at the expense of the poor - soon the poor can't afford and the middle class would be struggling to do the same.

The SEA are a collection of small states that have absolutely no power, even their combined military force is a joke and an artwork of paper-tiger cutouts. They rely on maintaining good relations with power blocs (both political and economic) to have a chance of survival. It is easy to read the governments in this region - they side with the more powerful. Singapore is probably the fastest responders to power shifts, however they are too powerless to do anything even if China wants us to sign over as a SAR.
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When three puppygirls named after pastries are on top of each other, it is called Eclair a'la menthe et Biscotti aux fraises avec beaucoup de Ricotta sur le dessus.
Most of all, you have to be disciplined and you have to save, even if you hate our current financial system. Because if you don't save, then you're guaranteed to end up with nothing.
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