Online video streaming service Netflix is to launch in Sweden and across the Nordic region, as first revealed by DTVE sister publication TBI in May. This move will mark the latest international launch for the service, which has already launched across Latin America, in Canada and in the UK and Ireland. The service will launch in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland by the end of 2012. It will be available on PCs, Macs, smart TVs, games consoles, Blu-ray disc players, smartphones and tablets.TBI revealed in May that the company, run by CEO Reed Hastings, was planning to launch in Scandinavia by the end of the year and was in talks with local content partners and international distributors to secure programming.Netflix had previously put its international expansion plans on hold in order to return to profitability in the US and had planned to roll out in Spain before pulling the launch.
Spanish regional cable operator Euskaltel increased its subscriber base and grew revenue and profit in Q1, with CEO Francisco Arteche saying that the company’s bundling strategy was paying dividends.Francisco ArtecheEuskaltel’s revenue rose 26.6% to €176.6 million for the quarter, while EBITDA grew by 23.8% to €84.2 million. Operating cash flow was up 12.3% to €50.3 million, and Euskaltel posted a net profit of €14.6 million, up 10.9%.The company, which combines Basque Country operator Euskaltel, Asturias-based Telecable and Galician operator R, added 25,000 new contract sales in Q1, taking its revenue-generating untie base to 2.3 million.Euskaltel said that triple- and quad-play customers now account for 68.6% of the overall base, with an average of 3.6 products per customer.Euskaltel added 6,000 pay TV customers in the qurter, taking its base to 400,000, which was attributed to the success of its new 4K Android-based set0top box and the addition of a Netflix button to its remote control.The company added 3,000 broadband subscribers, taking its base to 492,000, and 18,000 mobile lines, taking its overall base of mobile lines to 933,000.Euskaltel said that its growth had been boosted by its expansion into the Navarre region, where it is selling its products over Orange’s network, although it did not break out numbers.“We have honoured our market announcement: a net rise in new customers and growth in revenue, EBITDA and profits,” said Arteche.Euskaltel’s management came under criticism in March from shareholder Zegona Communications, the former majority owner of Telecable. Zegona said that it was “disappointed” Euskaltel’s performance, which it claimed had resulted in a €41.5 million decline in the value of its investment.
Vivendi has condemned what it sees as a move by its rival for the control of Telecom Italia (TIM), Elliott Advisors, to take advantage of the ongoing decline in TIM’s share price to acquire more stock.Responding to an SEC filing that revealed that Elliott has increased its stake in TIM to 9.4%, up from the 8.8% it held in April last year, Vivendi said that Elliott was acting opportunistically to benefit from a fall in the telco’s share price that it had brought about.Elliott said it its SEC document that TIM share were “undervalued and represent an attractive investment opportunity”.The hedge fund said that there were “several pathways” to increase shareholder value going forward, including “but not limited to” the “separation of its fixed-line access network (NetCo) and the evaluation of market consolidation operations” as well as the conversion of saving shares to common shares.Elliott also stated its opposition to Vivendi’s plans to engineer a change in the composition of the TIM board at the forthcoming March 29 shareholders meeting called for by the French media company. The hedge fund said that “any change in composition of the board at this juncture would be detrimental to the execution and delivery of [TIM’s] anticipated value creation plans”.“Elliott is acting as a pure financial investor, that is to say, using an opportunistic approach to take advantage of the 45% drop in the share price. The share price is currently so low because of Elliott’s own terrible governance since May 4. There is currently no industrial plan,” said a Vivendi spokesperson.TIM’s new Elliott-backed CEO Luigi Gubitosi, who replaced Vivendi-appointed Amos Genish in a move engineered by Elliott’s board members at the end of last year, is due to unveil a new strategy for the operator on February 21, which could involve the separation of the fixed network.
In This Issue.* Plethora of data push dollar lower… * German unemployment show a surprise improvement… * Pound continues to get sold… * Canadian dollar moves back above parity…And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts!US data push the dollar lower…Good day. And welcome to February. I can’t believe January is already over, it really flew by didn’t it? The St. Louis University basketball team pulled off what many would call a big upset yesterday by beating #9 Butler last night, and they won in impressive fashion! Congrats to the B-ball Billikens!! We had a busy day on the trading desk yesterday with the markets reacting to what was a plethora of data releases here in the US. And today we will have just as much data released which should lead to another volatile day. The last day of January started off with data showing the Personal Income and Spending of US consumers increased in December. The surprise number was on the income side where the data showed a 2.6% jump after an adjusted increase of 1% in November. These are some very strong numbers on the income side and were thought mainly to be due to questions regarding the fiscal cliff at year end. It seems many companies paid dividends and employee bonuses earlier than usual in order to avoid the jump in tax rates which everyone knew would be happening as we turned the calendar over. According to a story I read in Bloomberg, the Commerce department estimated about $26.4 billion of the increase in incomes was attributable to early dividend payments and another $15 billion reflected bonuses on other types of irregular pay. So the jump in income wasn’t really increases, it was simply a timing difference so the income numbers during the first quarter will undoubtedly show the flip side of these increases during last quarter.And in addition to the early bonuses, the payroll tax will be more of a drag on consumer’s disposable income this quarter. And even after the large surge in incomes during the last month of 2012, Personal spending actually showed a smaller increase than expected. Spending was up .2% in December after a .4% increase in the previous month. Other data showed prices remained flat in December as the PCE numbers were flat on a MOM basis. This data was followed up with the weekly jobs numbers which showed a slight increase in the number of jobless claims last week. The data showed 368k more workers applied for first time employment benefits compared to last weeks 330k. Continuing claims increased to 3197k compared to an adjusted figure of 3175k last week. The pace of recovery in the US labor market certainly isn’t increasing, and we will get even more jobs data later this morning. Economists are expecting today’s Nonfarm Payrolls numbers for January to reflect an increase of 165k with Private payrolls showing a 168k increase and another part of the report to show 10k more manufacturing jobs were added last month. The Unemployment rate is expected to remain at 7.8%, stubbornly high and well above Bernanke’s 6.5% target.The labor department will also be issuing its annual benchmark update, reflecting all of the revisions which it has made to the employment numbers from April 2011 to March 2012. The government will also incorporate new Census Bureau estimates into the household survey it uses to calculate the jobless rate. I’m sure Chuck will be dissecting these ‘adjustments’ and will share his thoughts with all of you (I can just hear him screaming at the walls now!)And yesterday’s plethora of data ended with the release of the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort index which fell again last week. The index dropped to minus 37.5 from -36.4 the previous week. This was a fourth consecutive decrease, and the lowest reading since October as the increase in the payroll tax put consumers in a negative mood.There was a bit of good news across the pond as German unemployment unexpectedly declined in January. Even with the improvement in the German labor market, unemployment in the euro area remained relatively high at 11.7%. But this reading is still below economists forecast of 11.9% for the EU jobless rate. These good employment numbers combined with the worrying data here in the US to push the Euro up almost a full cent. The Euro surged to a high of $1.3675, the highest level for the common currency since November of 2011. The euro ended January with a 2.93% increase vs. the US$, with Brazil being the only currency with a better return vs. the US$ at 3.02% for January. This is the sixth straight month of gains for the Euro vs. the US$, a somewhat surprising run for the common currency. We still caution investors against the euro, as the sovereign debt problems are sure to raise up again sometime this year; but this run by the euro is certainly impressive.Currency experts at some of the major banks feel the Euro has even more room to appreciate. According to a report by BNP Paribas SA the euro will strengthen to $1.40 by the third quarter of this year, the highest level since 2011. The Paris bank’s experts also said they expect the yen to experience ‘sustained’ weakness this year. BNP feel the Japanese currency will fall to 95 during the first quarter before strengthening to 85 by year end.That reminds me of an alert which caused a bit of a stir on the desk yesterday. Brian Arabia, the head of our Business Foreign Exchange department, forwarded all of us an alert which stated “Dollar at 2 ½ year high”. I immediately turned toward the screens to figure out what had caused the big reversal of fortune for the US$, but saw the euro above $1.35 and the Brazilian real below the 2 handle. But after looking a bit harder at the news story Brian had sent I saw it was just referring to the dollar/yen. Yes, the dollar is certainly strong vs. the Japanese yen, but this isn’t because of the dollar’s strength but is rather due to the weakness of the Japanese yen. This just goes to show you how the media can twist things around a bit and spin them to give readers a much different first impression. A clearer story on the US$ can be seen by looking at the dollar index. This broader based index dropped to a six week low and has just dropped below a key support level of 79.2. The only currency which joined the yen in dropping vs. the US$ yesterday was the Pound sterling which tumbled to the weakest level in 14 months. A report showed UK manufacturing growth is slowing with the Markit Economics supply index falling to 50.8 from a revised 51.2 in December. The pound dropped almost 2.5% vs. the US$ in January, and is down about 2% over the past 3 months. The UK is close to slipping into a ‘triple dip’ recession, with GDP dropping .3% during the 4th quarter of 2012. Depending on the data this morning in the US, currency traders could start to bid up the commodity currency in a ‘risk on’ day as China’s manufacturing index is expected to have climbed in December. The median estimate of economists pegs China’s January PMI at 51 compared to a reading of 50.6 in December. If the number is as expected, this would be the fourth straight month of a 50+ reading which signals the Chinese economy is again on an expansionary route. This would help the Australian and New Zealand dollars which depend on the strength of the Chinese economy. The Aussie can use a little ‘love’ from the Chinese after a report showed a gauge of Australian manufacturing fell to a 3 ½ year low in January. The strength of the Australian dollar has hurt exports and manufacturing in Australia, causing a 4.1 point drop in the manufacturing index. This gauge has shown Australian manufacturing has been in contraction since February of 2012. But currency strategists are still boosting forecasts for the Aussie dollar as they expect the Australian economy to rebound along with renewed growth in China. According to Bloomberg, estimates for the Aussie have climbed 8.2% to $1.05 from 97 cents on June 30. This isn’t a large increase from the $1.0419 where it is trading now, but it is still an increase.The Canadian dollar broke above parity for the first time in a week after a report showed the Canadian economy grew faster than forecast in November. The report released by Statistics Canada said the Canadian economy grew .3% following a .1% gain in the month prior. The loonie had been beat up a bit in January, but this data was enough to push the currency back above parity vs. the US$. To recap. Data pushed the dollar lower as the US economy is seen as stagnating in the 4th quarter. More data released today may give the markets direction, with the jobs data expected to show a small improvement. German unemployment data surprised on the upside and pushed the euro above $1.365 with many ‘experts’ feeling the euro has even further to run. Japanese yen continues to fall and was joined by the pound sterling which also dropped. The commodity currencies direction will be determined by the Chinese manufacturing numbers which will be released later today. Currencies today 2/1/13: American Style: A$ $1.0392, kiwi .8424, C$ 1.00, euro 1.3645, sterling 1.5839, Swiss $1.1052. European Style: rand 8.9420, krone 5.4461, SEK 6.3043, forint 214.50, zloty 3.0635, koruna 18.796, RUB 29.98, yen 92.13, sing 1.2409, HKD 7.7581, INR 53.1975, China 6.2273, pesos 12.7241, BRL 1.9869, Dollar Index 79.029, Oil $97.30, 10-year 2.00%, Silver $31.44, and Gold $1,664.70.That’s it for today. Happy birthday to my wonderful wife of 21 years. Tina is a great mom and good friend and I could not imagine my life without her. I asked her if she wanted to go out to a romantic dinner this evening and as is typical she instead wanted to just have a casual dinner with our kids, her mom and her sister. It’s a big day on the desk today as we finally get our replacement for Lori who left at the end of last year. Dane Moody, who started off in our operations area and then transferred to our wealth division is joining Christine on the trading side of the WorldMarkets desk. Welcome Dane, we all are excited to have you join the team!! I hope everyone has a Fantastic Friday and a Wonderful Weekend. GO NINERS!!Chris Gaffney, CFA Vice President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 1-314-647-3837
In This Issue. * RBA removes verbiage about A$ strength. * Sweden prints stronger than expected manufacturing report. * Chinese manufacturing prints flat. * Hedge Funds return to Gold. And, Now, Today’s Pfennig For Your Thoughts! The Partial Shutdown Begins. Good day. And a Tom Terrific Tuesday to you! And also welcome to October, which for many years, I’ve referred to the month as Rocktober! So, Rocktober is here, time to start getting the woolies out of storage, rake leaves, do like Chris like to do, go for rides to view the autumn foliage, and get ready for Halloween! Of course, Rocktober has also brought us a partial Gov’t shutdown. I’ll start with that discussion this morning for it’s what all the media is going kaka over! (and I don’t mean the soccer player!) So, yes, the partial shutdown of the Gov’t began at midnight last night, as the calendar turned to Rocktober. I guess I’ll have to remind the media to get a grip here… We’ve seen this all before… Yes, it’s been 17 years since the last Gov’t shutdown.. And we’ve had a number of these in our past. So, let’s not go all Chicken Little on me here! These are the things that happen when you allow your debt to rise unsustainably for over a decade… There’s an old saying about having to pay the piper… Well, that’s what this is all about… Speaking of “What it’s all about”… On a sidebar, I saw a sign the other day, that read: The Hokey Pokey Clinic… A place to turn yourself around… and that’s what it’s all about! So… What we have here is a failure to communicate… The House says that they want to negotiate and the Senate says they don’t want to negotiate… I don’t think I can even come up with a silly saying about what the lawmakers are doing right now, but… You know me, I think that both sides of the aisle has been to blame for this debt mess we’re in… And the dollar is caught in the middle… How long this lasts only the Shadow knows, but it appears that the markets are not happy with it, or the dollar right now… You see… the markets figure that if the Gov’t is going through this exercise of a partial shutdown, that the economy is going to suffer, and that would mean the Fed would have to extend their stimulus of bond buying and ZIRP (zero interest rate policy)… And all this is what has hurt the dollar in the past, so no reason to upset that applecart… Sell dollars because no one knows how this all stimulus ends, and now we’re just extending the unknown… So, after I signed off and sent the letter for review yesterday morning, the euro began to tick upward, and by the time everyone had arrived at their places with bright shining faces, the euro had climbed to 1.3545. Recall, I had told you yesterday morning that the euro had fallen below 1.35, but the move was small. That downward movement had been caused by the news this past weekend that Silvio Berlusconi (yes him again!) was pulling his party out of a coalition that would bring the Italian Gov’t down. A couple of things come to mind after typing that. 1. I’ve been dealing with currencies since 1992. And I’ve been writing about the misadventures, legal problems and scandals of Mr. Silvio Berlusconi since 1992! I can’t believe he has stuck around all this time! And 2. These Gov’t dissolutions happen all the time in Parliament Governments. And yes, it should have had some negative effects on the euro, but not much. But, as the morning wore on, a whispering campaign began to carry through the markets, that there were defectors from Berlusconi’s plans to withdraw his party. And the number of defectors would be enough to maintain the current Gov’t. coalition. And that’s what got the euro started once again. This morning, the euro is trading around that 1.3545 level still, but there are a few other currencies taking up the slack of a weaker dollar… The Aussie dollar (A$) is up more than 1-cent this morning… The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) left rates unchanged, as I suspected they would, and then removed some key verbiage from their statement regarding their concern with the strong A$… The Swedish krona is outperforming Europe this morning as Sweden reported that September Manufacturing expanded at its fastest pace in more than two years… The rest of the currencies are falling in behind these two… As far as the A$ is concerned, think about this for a minute… The U.S. Gov’t has begun to partially shutdown. In Japan, PM Abe announced that he was raising sales taxes next year from 5% to 8%… But in Australia, the RBA leaves rates unchanged and stops dissing the currency… I would think that the spotlight is shining brightly here, as opposed to U.S. dollars and yen… But remember what I told you that RBC thinks about the RBA and the A$ yesterday… And what the heck is Japanese PM Abe thinking about raising Sales Taxes? Think about that for another minute. Japan has had deflation cast over their economy for two decades, and part of deflation that’s not bad is that prices don’t rise, therefore there’s no impetus to go out and buy stuff now, as the Japanese know that the price will be the same in 6 months from now. So, retail sales stink in Japan, have stunk, do stink, and will continue to stink now that the PM has increased Sales Taxes! Geez Louise, what’s in the water over there in Japan that makes these guys think like this? OK… had to stop and sing along with the Guess Who, and their great song, These Eyes… But I’m back now… Like I always say, it’s a good thing I’m here by my lonesome in the early morning! But you have to love that Burton Cummings. And speaking of great things from Canada. The Canadian July GDP report printed yesterday ( I Know! This is so old data!) and printed stronger than expected, fully reversing June’s drop of -.5%… July printed at +.6%, with a rebound in manufacturing having the greatest affect on the data. I would think that the Bank of Canada (BOC) realizes that June’s drop was a direct result of the Alberta floods, and the July report is a sign of good things to come! I also think that given this quick start to the 3rd QTR for Canada, that we could very well see 3% growth in the 3rd QTR. If that happens, and we won’t know until we’re unwrapping our Christmas presents, we could very well see the BOC return to a rate hike campaign in 2014. We’ve already heard from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, (RBNZ) which pretty much greased the tracks for a return to a rate hike cycle in 2014.. Old stodgy countries, that are stuck in their ways, their wage requirements, and red tape, can’t improvise, adjust and overcome to the needs of the Emerging Markets like the mid-size industrialized countries can. And with growth being driven by the Emerging Markets as we move along in the decade, that will mean good things for everyone but the Old stodgy countries. You know who I’m talking about! Speaking of Emerging Markets. China printed their September manufacturing index at 51.1%, which is bang on what it was in August, and a bit below the expectations of 51.6%… China is on their Golden Week holiday this week. So, that makes the two of the top 3 economies in the world on hold this week. I still believe that China’s economic slowdown is over, and they are primed and ready to explode to the upside again. We’ll have to wait-n-see, eh? I know that many of you read my friend, John Mauldin. Last week John wrote in his weekly letter that he believed that the U.S. dollar would remain the reserve currency for years to come, and end up being more worthy than it is today. He also said that he believed that China would become a reserve currency too. Hmm. I’ll remind you that John also has called for the collapse of the euro for about 4 years now. So, I tell you this about what he said about the dollar, as my effort to be fair and balanced. But it does make for a good two-way market, eh? You know that I don’t believe in that talk about the dollar being more worthy than it is today in the future. How can that be? Well, he goes about explaining that with the U.S. gaining its energy independence, that the Current Account Deficit will eventually become a Surplus. But when? And it’s my contention, and I’ve explained it here, and whenever I give presentations these days, that having our Energy Independence isn’t going to help us much when the Chinese demand payment in the form of our Oil reserves, instead of the dollars that the Fed and Treasury have weakened for years. That’s just a thought on how it all plays out, folks, I’m not saying that I know anything that others don’t. And I could be wrong with all this. Let’s hope I am! British pound sterling continues to march to a different drummer these days, and book higher and higher levels VS the dollar. I say that about a different drummer, because the pound and the British economy has been so tied to the U.S. in the recent years. but new Bank of England (BOE) Gov. Carney really lit the fire under pound sterling last week when he said that the economy might not need additional bond buying. Now, that doesn’t mean the bond buying is over for sure here. And should bond buying return, these Happy Days for pound sterling will be a thing of the past. I was talking with my good friend, Charlie Tiano, last night (about baseball of course!) and the conversation switched over to the Gov’t Shutdown. I said that I expected to see a stock sell off and a switch to Treasuries. But this morning, Treasury yields are rising, which would mean that what I described as to what I thought we would see, hasn’t materialized yet. The other thing I thought we would see is a rise in the price of Gold. That too hasn’t materialized yet. Speaking of Gold. I read on the Bloomberg last night that Hedge funds combined holdings of Gold futures rose the most in September. I also saw that Gold had its first profitable quarter in a year. The last quarter that saw a rise in the price of Gold was the 3rd QTR of 2012. Last year, the quarterly rise proved to be a false dawn to Gold’s price continuing to rise. Maybe, just maybe, this year will prove to be different, although you know me, I don’t like that saying. (This time it’s different) I’m just saying, that with the Gov’t shutdown, and worries all around the world, that Gold has a reason to rise. The U.S. data cupboard has the September ISM Manufacturing Index to print for us today. The “experts” believe it will print around 55. which is a good number, and is a direct result of the weaker dollar that we’ve seen in the past couple of months. But then maybe with the partial Gov’t shutdown, we won’t see any data prints. Which would be fine with me, for you know me, I think they are all garbage these days with all their hedonic adjustments. Before I head to the Big Finish. a long time reader sent me a note yesterday with his thoughts on the Gov’t shutdown. Let’s listen in. “My idea for the Gov’t shutdown is to withhold all pay for Congress, the President and all their staff, until a budget is in place. That should change a lot of hard heads. Imagine how creative, and cooperative they will get once their own salary is sequestered.” My thoughts exactly! For What It’s Worth. I found this on moneynews.com, a sight that I frequent more and more these days. It’s the Fed Reserve president Richard Fisher, you know the guy that owns a truckload of Gold. Let’s listen in to Richard Fisher talk about Big Banks, and the U.S. Gov’t. “Fisher’s solution is not so much to break up the mega banks like Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase as it is to put a firewall between their banking activities and their investment activities. According to his thinking, federal deposit insurance and access to the Fed discount window should only be available to the commercial banking arms of the big banks, while any transaction involving any other segment of their businesses, including their investment arms, “be accompanied with a clear agreement between counterparties that it will never, ever be bailed out by government or the taxpayers.” But would this scenario play out in Washington? “The large financial companies and their proxies are spending millions of dollars to buy congressmen and congresswomen and protect their interests,” he told Euromoney. “You can quote me on that. We will see how that plays out.” Small businesses should be the engine of U.S. growth, but they are being thwarted by lack of direction from Washington, and the fact there has been no federal budget for five years, Fisher explained. Neighboring Mexico has a sounder fiscal policy than the United States, according to Fisher. “Mexico has a balanced-budget rule. Its percentage of debt to GDP is minimal. They get things done. And they have an independent central bank that is truly independent.” Chuck again. OK. I think that my first choice for new Fed Chairman is Bill Bonner, but Richard Fisher is running a close second! To recap. The Partial Shutdown of the U.S. Gov’t has begun, and with it has brought some dollar selling. This is the first shutdown in 17 years in the U.S. but has been done a number of times in our past, so don’t go all Chicken Little on me here. It’s called negotiating. The RBA left rates unchanged by also removed some verbiage about concern for the strong A$… And that has pushed the A$ up over 1-cent overnight. Sweden booked a stronger than expected manufacturing index for September, and that has the krona coming in second place in the currency returns overnight. China booked a flat Manufacturing Index, but that doesn’t spook Chuck. Currencies today 10/1/13. American Style: A$ .9425, kiwi .8290, C$ .9705, euro 1.3545, sterling 1.6235, Swiss $ 1.1060, . European Style: rand 10.0585, krone 6.0050, SEK 6.3735, forint 218.65, zloty 3.1225, koruna 18.9250, RUB 32.26, yen 97.80, sing 1.2515, HKD 7.7550, INR 62.46, China 6.1480, pesos 13.12, BRL 2.2165, Dollar Index 80.05, Oil $102.16, 10-year 2.65%, Silver $21.64, Platinum $1,398.25, Palladium $723.16, and Gold.. $1,326.06 That’s it for today. My beloved Cardinals’ first two playoff game times have been set. 4:07 on Thursday, 12:07 on Friday. I’m sure there has to be someone out there that I know that has tickets to Friday that won’t be able to get away from work to go to the game and will need someone to use their tickets! I’m your man! Sorry about the later delivery time of the Pfennig yesterday, we had a communication problem. So, do you go to the Pfennig Blog site ever? If not, you should, as you can check out the archives, and respond right there to maybe even start a lively discussion among Blog site readers! Check it out here: www.dailypfennig.com My marketing people wanted originally to only do the Blog site, and get rid of the email. You should have seen the temper tantrum I threw! So, no worries, now we have both! And two things are better than one! Right? Tampa Bay Rays beat Rangers in their one-game playoff to play another one-game play-in today VS the Cleveland Indians. Crazy stuff! Our Blues begin their NHL season in a couple of days. Will it be another year of “same old Blues” or will this be the year they finally drink from the Cup? We won’t know until June, so don’t go all-in right away. And with that, I hope you have a Tom Terrific Tuesday! Chuck Butler President EverBank World Markets 1-800-926-4922 1-314-647-3837
One of the cool things about the Bible is that it contains some very interesting passages that no one seems to read. Understand, please, that I’m neither promoting a literal interpretation of the Bible nor giving you a sermon. I’m just pointing out a fascinating fact that most everyone seems to have missed, religious folks included. In this case, I’m referring to a passage that comes at the very end of the book, where a list is given, itemizing the kinds of people who will be condemned to “the second death.” Who would you expect to stand at the top of the list? Murders? Idolators? Maybe adulterers? Nope, none of those. The first people heading off to destruction are “the fearful.” But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. Not what you expected? You can look it up if you like. That’s from Revelation 21:8 (King James Version). And I even checked the original Greek: fearful is the right translation. Fear as a Tool of Damnation I’m not going to get into theological engineering here, but yes, this would mean that the promoters of fear are sending people to hell. And, considering that we live in a fear-based culture, that’s an interesting thought indeed. Now, if you want to be truly bold, think about this: Who is it that currently promotes fear? We know the answer, of course. The people who live on fear are the majesties of the age: politicians being chief among them but followed by the entire ‘law enforcement‘ complex, military and intelligence organizations, television news-readers, religious bosses, newspaper operators, and, increasingly, anyone who wants something and has access to the public stage. If the Bible is correct, people who profit from fear are profiting from the destruction (nay, the damnation!) of their fellow men and women. Religion Isn’t Necessary, of Course The conclusion that fear is the enemy of mankind doesn’t require religion, of course. We can reach the same conclusion just by recognizing that fear (and especially the chemicals associated with fear) damage our health. Literally, people who make you fear are making you sick. (We covered this in issue #38 of Free-Man’s Perspective) Beyond that, it is clear that fear is the number one tool of manipulators. If you want to get large numbers of men and women to do your will, scare them. Every tyrant in history has known this and used this technique. What To Do About It First of all, start paying attention to your feelings and notice when things make you afraid. Stop your thinking and pay attention to the whole fear process. If you do, you can deal with most of these attacks quickly, rather than leaving an indistinct fear to roll around the back of your mind all day. Second, start analyzing the words that convey fear to you. Are they really true? Is the response the fear merchants deliver to you really the only course of action? The hard part of doing this is that the words come too fast; by the time you’re ready to analyze one statement, another one is halfway complete. Analyzing them in writing is far easier, or getting a live speaker to slow down and go one phrase at a time. Third, start discounting the people who consistently throw fear at you. If that’s all they have, they’re not worth paying attention to. Turn off the TV; excuse yourself from the conversation; walk away. You don’t have to take it. Finally, start pointing out these things to other people. They may be defensive at first, but isn’t that worth facing, to clear the minds of your friends and family? Why should they suffer under the lash of fear all their lives? Paul Rosenberg FreemansPerspective.com
“The #1 Investment I recommend you make right now” – Chris Mayer This is a big secret behind some of the world’s greatest stock pickers’ fortunes – but not many people know how to take advantage. In this FREE event, Chris will share this “success formula” with you. Click here for the details and to join this FREE event before it expires. Justin’s note: Today, Casey Research founder Doug Casey and International Man senior editor Nick Giambruno explain why it’s never been more important to diversify your savings. Read on to learn how… Nick Giambruno: For centuries, wealthy people have used international diversification to protect their savings and themselves from out-of-control governments. Now, thanks to modern technology, anyone can implement similar strategies. Doug, I’d like to discuss some of the basic ways regular people can internationally diversify their savings. For an American, what’s the difference between having a bank account at Bank of America and having a foreign bank account? Doug Casey: I’d say there is possibly all the difference in the world. The entire world’s banking system today is shaky, but if you go international, you can find much more solid banks than those that we have here in the US. That’s important, but beyond that, you’ve got to diversify your political risk. And if you have your bank account in a US bank, it’s eligible to being seized by any number of government agencies or by a frivolous lawsuit. So besides finding a more solid bank, by having your liquid assets in a different political jurisdiction you insulate yourself from a lot of other risks as well. America’s “Shadow President”—and how he’s getting rich(er) [not who you might think] Billionaire Peter Thiel has been spotted in Trump’s “NY Whitehouse” and has even been called the “Shadow President” for the influence he wields. He is a heavy backer of a new type of currency that’s already making some people very rich. This has been an opportunity for the average guy to generate “small fortunes,” writes The Economist. $24,955,415,087 have left traditional currencies and gone into this new type of currency. We’ve spoken with dozens of insiders about this phenomenon… including the world’s top investor in this space and members of the “Fed.” Click here for the full story. — Nick Giambruno: Moving some of your savings abroad also allows you to preempt capital controls (restrictions on moving money out of the country) and the destructive measures that always follow. Doug Casey: This is a very serious consideration. When the going gets tough, governments never control themselves, but they do try to control their subjects. It’s likely that the US is going to have official capital controls in the future. This means that if you don’t have money outside of the US, it’s going to become very inconvenient and/or very expensive to get money out. Nick Giambruno: Why do you think the US government would institute capital controls? Doug Casey: Well, there are about $7-8 trillion—nobody knows for sure—outside of the US, and those are like a ticking time bomb. Foreigners don’t have to hold those dollars. Americans have to hold the dollars. If you’re going to trade within the US, you must use US dollars, both legally and practically. Foreigners don’t have to, and at some point they may perceive those dollars as being the hot potatoes they are. And the US government might say that we can’t have Americans investing outside the country, perhaps not even spending a significant amount outside the country, because they are just going to add to this giant pile of dollars. There are all kinds of reasons that they could come up with. We already have de facto capital controls, quite frankly, even though there’s no law at the moment saying that an American can’t invest abroad or take money out of the country. The problem is because of other US laws, like FATCA, finding a foreign bank or a foreign broker who will accept your account is very hard. Very, very few of them will take American accounts anymore because the laws make it unprofitable, inconvenient, and dangerous, so they don’t bother. So it’s not currently against the law, but it’s already very hard. — Recommended Link Recommended Link Nick Giambruno: What forms of savings are good candidates to take abroad? Gold coins? Foreign real estate? Doug Casey: Well, you put your finger on exactly the two that I was going to mention. Everybody should own gold coins because they are money in its most basic form—something that a lot of people have forgotten. Gold is the only financial asset that’s not simultaneously somebody else’s liability. And if your gold is outside the US, it gives you another degree of insulation should the United States decide that you shouldn’t own it—it’s not a reportable asset currently. If you have $1 million of cash in a bank account abroad, you must report that to the US government every year. If you have $1 million worth of gold coins in a foreign safe deposit box, however, that is not reportable, and that’s a big plus. So gold is one thing. The second thing, of course is real estate. There are many advantages to foreign real estate. Sometimes it’s vastly cheaper than in the US. Foreign real estate is also not a reportable asset to the US government. Nick Giambruno: Foreign real estate is a good way to internationally diversify a big chunk of your savings. What are the chances that your home government could confiscate foreign real estate? It’s pretty close to zero. Doug Casey: I’d say it’s just about zero because they can make you repatriate the cash in your foreign bank account, but what can they make you do with the real estate? Would they tell you to sell it? Well, it’s not likely. Also, if things go sideways in your country, it’s good to have a second place you can transplant yourself to. And I know that it’s unbelievable for most people to think anything could go wrong in their home country—a lot of Germans thought that in the ’20s, a lot of Russians thought that in the early teens, a lot of Vietnamese thought that in the ’60s, a lot of Cubans thought that in the ’50s. It could happen anywhere. Nick Giambruno: Besides savings, what else can people diversify? How does a second passport fit into the mix? Doug Casey: It’s still quite possible—and completely legal—for an American to have a citizenship in a second country, and it offers many advantages. As for opening up foreign bank accounts, if you show them an American passport, they’ll likely tell you to go away. Once again, obtaining a foreign bank or brokerage account is extremely hard for Americans today—that door has been closing for some time and is nearly slammed shut now. But if you show a foreign bank a Paraguayan or a Panamanian or any other passport, they’ll welcome you as a customer. Nick Giambruno: The police state is metastasizing in the US. Is that a good reason to diversify as well? Doug Casey: It’s a harbinger, I’m afraid, of what’s to come. The fact is that police forces throughout the US have been militarized. Every little town has a SWAT team, sometimes with armored personnel carriers. All of the Praetorian style agencies on the federal level—the FBI, CIA, NSA, and over a dozen others like them—have become very aggressive. Every single day in the US, there are scores of confiscations of people’s bank accounts, and dozens having their doors broken down in the wee hours of the night. The ethos in the US really seems to be changing right before our very eyes, and I think it’s quite disturbing. You can be accused of almost anything by the government and have your assets seized without due process. Every year there are billions of dollars that are seized by various government entities, including local police departments, who get to keep a percentage of the proceeds, so this is a very corrupting thing. People forget that when the US was founded there were only three federal crimes, and they are listed in the Constitution: treason, counterfeiting, and piracy. Now it’s estimated there are over 5,000 federal crimes, and that number is constantly increasing. This is very disturbing. There is a book called Three Felonies a Day, which estimates that many or most Americans inadvertently commit three felonies a day. So it’s becoming Kafkaesque. Nick Giambruno: Thanks, Doug. Until next time. Doug Casey: Thanks, Nick. Justin’s note: The US government gets bigger, more invasive, and more aggressive by the day. Fortunately, you can take concrete steps to protect yourself from this hostile giant. New York Times bestselling author Doug Casey explains how you can maximize your personal and financial freedom in this new special report. Click here to download the PDF now.
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A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS… The Home Office has been unable to explain why the number of disability hate crime cases referred to prosecutors by the police plunged last year by nearly a quarter, and why successful prosecutions of such offences fell even more sharply.In a week when the Home Office published its updated hate crime action plan, and its own figures showed a significant rise in the number of hate crimes recorded by the police, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) figures are likely to embarrass home secretary Sajid Javid.In publishing his refreshed action plan, Javid said that hate crime “goes directly against the long-standing British values of unity, tolerance and mutual respect” and that he was “committed to stamping this sickening behaviour out”.But his department has been unable to explain this week why the new CPS annual report on hate crime showed the number of disability hate crimes referred by police forces in England and Wales to CPS fell from 988 in 2016-17 to just 754 in 2017-18, a drop of 23.7 per cent.This is likely to have contributed to a fall in completed prosecutions of disability hate crime cases from 1,009 to 752 last year (an even steeper fall of 25.5 per cent) and a slump in the number of disability hate crime convictions from 800 to 564 (a drop of 29.5 per cent).Only last week, Disability News Service reported how the work of police officers in more than half of disability hate crime investigations had been found to be “unacceptable”, following a joint inspection by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services and HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI).The new CPS figures came as the Home Office’s own figures showed the number of disability hate crimes recorded by police forces rose sharply from 5,558 in 2016-17 to 7,226 in 2017-18.There is continuing debate over whether the latest significant increase in recorded hate crimes is due to more disabled people willing to report such offences to the police or third-party reporting centres; because of an actual increase in disability hate crime; or because of a combination of the two.As incidents can take several months for the police to investigate, crimes reported in 2017-18 may not have been referred to the CPS in that period, so the Home Office and CPS figures are not directly comparable.Separate Home Office figures – taken from the Crime Survey of England and Wales, but less statistically significant than those recorded by police forces because of the survey’s sample size – suggest that the number of disability hate crimes may have fallen slightly.They showed an average of about 52,000 disability hate crimes per year from 2015-16 to 2016-17, compared with an average of about 56,000 a year during the period 2011-12 to 2013-14, and 77,000 per year during the period 2007-08 to 2009-10.Anne Novis, chair of Inclusion London and the Metropolitan police’s disability hate crime working group, said it was “very disappointing” to see statistics showing such a steep fall in police referrals to CPS and subsequent prosecutions and convictions.She said possible explanations included the lack of training for police officers and “a lack of senior police emphasising the importance of recording and investigating appropriately”.But she also blamed government cuts, which she said had hit police forces hard, including their training budgets.She said: “Hundreds of staff have gone from the police in London, including many senior staff.“It is unrealistic that they could provide a service to all of us, let alone a community that finds it hard to communicate with the police because of the barriers that we have to face.”Despite the cuts, she said, police forces were still letting disabled people down with their performance on disability hate crime.A Home Office spokeswoman was unable to explain the fall in police referrals and failed to say if the department was concerned and what action it was going to take.But she said in a statement: “We expect all incidents of hate crime to be taken seriously and we are committed to making sure that police and prosecutors have the powers they need to bring offenders to justice.“We will continue to work with stakeholders to address what more can be done to tackle disability hate crime, particularly increasing reporting, and how we can support the police response to this vile crime.”A CPS spokesman said: “The CPS is only able to prosecute cases which are referred to us by the police.“We note the fall in the number of disability hate crime cases prosecuted this year and will continue to work with the police to understand any emerging trends.“The recent HMCPSI report on disability hate crime praised the work of the CPS and particularly our hate crime co-ordinators, so we can be confident the CPS is prosecuting these cases appropriately.”Two years ago, the then home secretary Amber Rudd was heavily criticised when she published her hate crime action plan for a “totally disrespectful” failure to address problems around disability-related hostility.The government’s updated hate crime action plan bragged this week of how its efforts since 2016 had “delivered success, including examples of strong police practice in response to hate crime and dealing with perpetrators”.Among new measures announced this week in the action plan, the Law Commission has been asked to review current hate crime legislation – as the commission recommended four years ago in a heavily-criticised report – following concerns that it does not offer disabled and LGBT people equal protection to that given to other protected groups.The review is likely to include examining the possible extension of aggravated offences – which have higher sentences and currently can only apply to crimes linked to race and religion – to disability, sexual orientation and transgender identity.There will also be a national hate crime communications campaign, while the government will work with local groups to raise awareness of disability hate crime and examine how best to promote third party reporting centres, as well as attempting to “increase and broaden our engagement with stakeholders representing disabled people”.A separate report detailing progress made on the 2016 action plan reveals that a piece of research that aimed to identify the motivation behind disability hate crime had to be “abandoned” because they could not find enough perpetrators willing to work with academics.Meanwhile, a disabled people’s organisation has welcomed a £373,000 grant from the National Lottery that will further its work in tackling disability hate crime over the next three years.Disability Equality (nw), which is based in Preston, Lancashire, will use the money to develop disabled-led programmes and partnerships, focusing on the night-time economy, hate crime hot spots and “recruiting more disabled people who have been victims of hate crime to be ambassadors” so they can “spread the word” about how to report disability hate crime.
A new guide – written solely by autistic people – aims to show care providers, commissioners and inspectors how to provide “quality care” for other autistic people.An Independent Guide to Quality Carefor Autistic Peoplehas been written by members of the National Autistic Taskforce (NAT) and has a“heavy emphasis” on developing choice and control for service-users.The guidesays: “The more autonomy a person has, the less support services need to relyon external authorities such as good practice guides, instead looking to theperson themselves as the primary source of information, instruction andguidance.”Among itsrecommendations is that care providers should make the protection of service-users’autonomy “a core priority” and ensure they have choice and control over “majorlife decisions and not just everyday choices”.The guideadds: “Respect the rights of all people to privacy, dignity and the maximumpossible control over their own lives.”It also saysthere should be respect for the right of autistic service-users to make “unwisedecisions”, while their human rights should be prioritised over any “perceivedrisks to organisational or personal reputations”.The guide,which has been endorsed by organisations including the autistic-led AutisticUK and the non-user-ledcharity the National Autistic Society, warns that even “well-meaning approachesto care may be negative experiences for some autistic people when these do notrespect an autistic perspective”.This couldinclude being subjected to “treatments” that seek to “normalise” theservice-user or that try to include them in social activities they do not wantto participate in.The guidesays service-providers should carry out regular “sensory reviews” of the placeswhere autistic service-users spend time, ensure “prompt and effective” accessto advocacy, and embed “rights-based thinking” in day-to-day practice.And it saysthat any “physical intervention, pharmaceutical control of behaviour or anyother forms of restraint” should be viewed as service “failures”.The guidesays: “A good service for autistic people is one where staff try to putthemselves in an autistic person’s shoes, get to know each person as anindividual, and maintain a relationship with the person based on trust andrespect.”And it adds:“A good service for autistic people recognises autistic identity and does not assumethat what is ‘normal’ or ‘good’ for non-autistic people is necessarily rightfor an autistic person.”Thetaskforce hopes its new guide will be part of a growing move beyond the idea ofco-production of services and “towards autistic leadership”.Its mainauthor was trainer and consultant Yo Dunn, a member of the NAT executive.NAT was launched in December 2017 and has received two years’ funding of £100,000 from the Shirley Foundation, with its focus “to help empower autistic adults, including those with less autonomy and higher support needs, to have a stronger voice in the decisions and direction of their own lives”.A note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…
Add to Queue Where the government is lacking, a pizza company is delivering. –shares Image credit: Domino’s Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business Register Now » June 11, 2018 2 min read If you’re worried America’s notoriously pothole-ridden streets will crumble unchecked after the recent $1.5 trillion tax cut, just order a pizza and hope for the best. Domino’s, it what is apparently much more of a publicity stunt than an infrastructure initiative (yet is still more innovative than the typical state highway department) has revealed a “paving for pizza” partnership to repair potholes in towns where it sells pizzas.“Potholes, cracks and bumps in the road can cause irreversible damage to your pizza during the drive home from Domino’s,’’ the eatery warns. “We can’t stand by and let your cheese slide to one side, your toppings get un-topped, or your boxes flippled. So we’re helping to pave in towns across the country save your good pizza from these bad roads.”Image credit: Domino’sRelated: Domino’s and Ford Partner Up to Test Self-Driving Delivery CarsThis could be a very long running ad campaign. According to the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission of the U.S. Congress, it will require spending $185 billion every year for the next 50 years just to keep America’s roads and bridges from getting worse than they are now. The country is collectively spending $68 billion annually on road and bridge repairs, or a bit more than a third of what’s needed.The Domino’s initiative isn’t promising to fill the gap (so to speak). A quick tally of the stats on the company’s site reveals it’s filled 203 potholes, so far, in four cities of varying sizes. Athens, Ga., received by far the most asphalt with 150 filled potholes. In car-crazed Southern California, the Paving for Pizza initiative has filled five potholes, all in Burbank.Related: The One City in America Where You Can Get Domino’s ‘Breakfast Pizza’The program is accepting nominations for towns to assist. The nomination forms makes no guarantees about road work ever getting done (which makes Domino’s no worse than the government on this topic) but does allow for the purchase of a large carry-out pizzas for $7.99. Just Order a Pizza If America’s Crumbling Infrastructure Worries You — Domino’s Is on It Domino’s Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Senior Editor for Green Entrepreneur Peter Page Entrepreneur Staff Next Article
News and Trends Learn how to successfully navigate family business dynamics and build businesses that excel. Shooting at Annapolis Newspaper Leaves 5 Dead. Its Journalists Have Been Courageously Covering the Attack Ever Since. Add to Queue –shares Next Article Journalists at The Capital Gazette worked out of a makeshift office in a pickup truck to put out Friday’s paper as scheduled. Free Webinar | July 31: Secrets to Running a Successful Family Business 3 min read Entrepreneur Staff June 29, 2018 Image credit: Saul Loeb | Getty Images Associate Editor Just before 2:40 p.m. on Thursday, a gunman shot through the glassdoor of the Capital Gazette newsroom in Annapolis, Md. Journalists hid underneath desks as a gunman used a long-arm shotgun to open fire on newspaper employees, killing five and injuring two.Authorities said they responded within one minute of the attack and later confirmed the victims to be assistant editor and columnist Rob Hiaasen, 59; community correspondent and special publications head Wendi Winters, 65; editorial page editor Gerald Fischman, 61; staff writer John McNamara, 56; and sales assistant Rebecca Smith, 34.Journalists initially reported the experience on Twitter. A summer intern at the paper, Anthony Messenger, tweeted, “Please help us,” along with the office address.“There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you’re under your desk and then hear the gunman reload,” wrote Phil Davis, a staff reporter covering courts and crime.The attack marked the 154th mass shooting in 2018, according to the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive. That’s nearly one per day so far this year. Reporters, photographers and editors came together after the attack to form a makeshift office in a pickup truck, working out of a local mall parking garage. They successfully put out Friday’s paper with in-depth biographies for each slain colleague. The Capital Gazette’s staff has been covering developments firsthand ever since on the newspaper’s website.“I don’t know what else to do except this,” said staff reporter Chase Cook in a piece written by his colleagues.A Washington journalist started a GoFundMe campaign for the Capital Gazette and staff victims that, at time of writing, had raised almost $123,000 in 19 hours.“Gerald, Rob, Wendi, John and Rebecca will never be forgotten,” said Trif Alatzas, publisher and editor-in-chief of The Capital Gazette’s parent company, The Baltimore Sun Media Group, in a statement on Friday. “They were not only our colleagues but also our friends.” Alatzas said the publications will continue to honor the victims’ memories by supporting staff and continuing their mission to deliver the news.At a Friday news conference, officials called the shooting a coordinated attack and mentioned the rear door of the building had been barricaded.“The fellow was there to kill as many people as he could kill,” said Timothy Altomare, police chief for Maryland’s Anne Arundel County.The Anne Arundel County police department did not respond to a request for comment. Alleged shooter Jarrod Warren Ramos, 38, who had for years tried to unsuccessfully sue the paper for defamation, hid under a desk as police entered the newsroom. He allegedly did not cooperate with police in custody, but authorities were able to use facial recognition technology to identify him. On Friday morning, he was charged with five counts of first-degree murder, and he will be held without bail until his trial date.On Friday, Maryland’s flags were lowered to half-staff. Hayden Field Register Now »
Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)Nov 12 2018Researchers from the University of Minnesota, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and the University of Toronto have discovered a possible path forward in preventing the development of cancers tied to two viruses, including the virus that causes infectious mononucleosis–more commonly known as mono or the “kissing disease”–that infects millions of people around the globe each year.Published in Nature Microbiology, the research focuses on how the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Kaposi’s sarcoma herpesvirus (KSHV) shield themselves from destruction inside the human body.”People infected with EBV or KSHV will have the virus for life,” said Adam Cheng, a Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) student at the University of Minnesota Medical School and lead author on the study. “In most cases, the virus will remain dormant. However, sometimes these viruses can reactivate and lead to abnormal, cancerous cell growth. But now, in the wake of our research, data suggests it may be possible to suppress the virus indefinitely.”Related StoriesMetabolic enzyme tied to obesity and fatty liver diseaseBacteria in the birth canal linked to lower risk of ovarian cancerHIV DNA persists in spinal fluid despite treatment, linked to cognitive impairmentUnder ideal conditions, a human DNA enzyme called APOBEC3B is capable of mutating and killing EBV and KSHV as it invades and replicates inside the body. However, researchers discovered that both viruses are able to produce defense proteins–BORF2 and ORF61, respectively–that bind directly to the APOBEC3B enzyme. In doing so, APOBEC3B is unable to mutate and kill the viral DNA and is directed away from sites of virus replication.”Our work suggests that by blocking the virus’s defense proteins, it may be possible to treat mono and prevent the development of cancers caused by EBV and KSHV,” said senior author Reuben Harris, Ph.D. “The viral defense proteins are excellent targets for drug development.”Researchers used CRISPR/Cas9-mediated genome engineering to delete the EBV’s defense protein. Through that process, the human APOBEC3B enzyme was able to mutate the virus, rendering it harmless and unable to replicate in cells.”We are already working hard to extend these results from cells to mice and other complex organisms,” said Harris. “The preliminary data are very promising and we hope to make great strides in future studies.””This is a great example of how an unbiased basic science experiment can lead to novel therapeutic opportunities. We could not have anticipated such an unusual role of BORF2 in disabling APOBEC3B and protecting EBV genomes,” said Lori Frappier, Ph.D., senior author on the study and professor at the University of Toronto. Source:https://twin-cities.umn.edu/news-events/research-brief-new-strategy-discovered-toward-possible-prevention-cancers-tied-mono
Apple is seeking slightly more than a billion dollars in damages, while Samsung wants a figure closer to $28 million.The jury has been asked to determine whether design features at issue in the case are worth all profit made from Samsung smartphones that copied them or whether those features are worth just a fraction because they are components.”Samsung isn’t saying it isn’t required to pay profits,” Samsung attorney John Quinn said during closing arguments on Friday.”It is just saying it isn’t required to pay profits on the whole phone.”The three design patents in the case apply to the shape of the iPhone’s black screen with rounded edges and a bezel, and the rows of colorful icons displayed.Samsung no longer sells the smartphone models at issue in the case.Two utility patents also involved apply to “bounce-back” and “tap-to-zoom” functions.”This is a case that is focused on design, and the application of design to smartphones,” Apple attorney Joseph Mueller said in closing arguments.When one company copies a rival’s design, that “is not a level playing field, and that is just not right,” he contended.Apple argued in court that the iPhone was a “bet-the-company” project at Apple and that design is as much the “article of manufacture” as the device itself.Apple attorney Bill Lee equated the notion to a carmaker copying the look of the Volkswagen Beetle and coming to market with a competing model.Determining whether the design features qualify as the “article of manufacture” will be key to whether jurors award the profit from all the Samsung phones involved, according to legal standards presented by the court.The case dates back seven years. An original trial finding that Samsung violated Apple patents was followed by lengthy appellate dueling over whether design features such as rounded edges are worth all the money made from a phone.Technology vs StyleSamsung, which had been ordered to pay $400 million, challenged the legal precedent that requires the forfeiture of all profits from a product even if only a single design patent has been infringed.The US Supreme Court in 2016 overturned the $400 million patent infringement penalty imposed on the South Korean consumer electronics giant.Justices ruled that Samsung should not be required to forfeit the entire profits from its smartphones for infringement on design components, sending the case back to a lower court.The ruling found that the penalty—one element of a major patent infringement case—was inappropriate because it represented “Samsung’s entire profit from the sale of its infringing smartphones” for copying the iPhone’s “rectangular front face with rounded edges and a grid of colorful icons on a black screen.”The key question of the value of design patents rallied Samsung supporters in the tech sector, and Apple backers in the creative and design communities.Samsung won the backing of major Silicon Valley and other IT sector giants, including Google, Facebook, Dell and Hewlett-Packard, claiming a strict ruling on design infringement could lead to a surge in litigation.Apple was supported by big names in fashion and manufacturing. Design professionals, researchers and academics, citing precedents like Coca-Cola’s iconic soda bottle.The Supreme Court stopped short of delving into details of how the lower court should determine how much phone design components are worth when it comes to patent infringement violations.Presiding US District Court Judge Lucy Koh gave jurors in her San Jose courtroom a four-factor test to determine an “article of manufacture,” but it is up to the panel to decide how the evidence fits that framework.The case is one element of a $548 million penalty—knocked down from an original $1 billion jury award —Samsung was ordered to pay for copying iPhone patents. Explore further Citation: Apple-Samsung iPhone design copying case goes to jury (2018, May 20) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-apple-samsung-iphone-case-jury.html Jurors are weighing the price to put on patented iPhone design features copied by Samsung in a legal case dating back seven years Samsung and Apple are back in court over iPhone design. Here’s why. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Jurors return to a Silicon Valley courtroom Monday to put a price on patented iPhone design features copied by Samsung in a legal case dating back seven years. © 2018 AFP
Just like in the movies, default real-life virtual assistants are often female (Siri; Alexa). But there is some promise of change: having announced in May that their Google Assistant would be getting six new voices, but that the default was named “Holly,” Google more recently issued an update that assigns them colours instead of names, done randomly in order to avoid any associations between particular colours and genders.This is a promising step, but technology cannot progress while the same types of people remain in control of their development and management. Perhaps increased female participation in Silicon Valley could change the way we imagine and develop technology and how it sounds and looks. Diversity in front of and behind the Hollywood camera is equally important in order to improve the way we present our possible futures and so inspire future creators. Marvel assistantsAt least since the demise of Stark’s sentient AI JARVIS in Avengers: Age of Ultron (2013), the fictional AI landscape has become predominantly female. Stark’s male AI JARVIS – which he modelled and named after his childhood butler – is destroyed in the fight against Ultron (although he ultimately becomes part of a new embodied android character called The Vision). Stark then replaces his operating system not with a back up of JARVIS or another male voiced AI but with FRIDAY (voiced by Kerry Condon). This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. 2001: A Space Odyssey. Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures Iron Man (Stark). Credit: Marvel 2016 Fictional male voices do exist, of course, but today they are simply far less common. HAL-9000 is the most famous male-voiced Hollywood AI – a malevolent sentient computer released into the public imagination 50 years ago in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey.Male AI used to be more common, specifically in stories where technology becomes evil or beyond our control (like Hal). Female AI on the other hand is, more often than not, envisaged in a submissive servile role. Another pattern concerns whether fictional AI is embodied or not. When it is, it tends to be male, from the Terminator, to Sonny in I, Robot and super-villain Ultron in Avengers: Age of Ultron. Ex Machina’s Ava (Alicia Vikander) is an interesting anomaly to the roster of embodied AI and she is seen as a victim rather than an uncontrolled menace, even after she kills her creator.The Marvel Cinematic Universe, specifically the AI inventions of Tony Stark, and the 2017 film Blade Runner 2049, offer interesting and somewhat problematic takes on the future of AI. The future may be female, but in these imagined AI futures this is not a good thing. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Designing a chatbot: male, female or gender neutral? FRIDAY is a far less prominent character. Stark’s AI is pushed into a far more secondary role, one where she is very much the assistant, unlike the complex companion Stark created in JARVIS. Likewise, in Spider-Man Homecoming, Stark gifts Peter Parker (Tom Holland) his own super suit, which comes with a nameless female-voiced virtual assistant. Peter initially calls her “suit lady,” later naming her Karen. Peter imbues his suit with personality and identity by naming it, but you wonder if he would have been so willing to imagine his suit as a caring confidant if it had come with a older-sounding male voice. Citation: There’s a reason Siri, Alexa and AI are imagined as female – sexism (2018, August 13) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-08-siri-alexa-ai-female-sexism.html Explore further Provided by The Conversation Karen is virtual support for the Spider-Man suit, designed to train and enhance Peter’s abilities. But in building a relationship of trust with her, Karen takes on the role of a friend for Peter, even encouraging him to approach the girl he likes at school. Here, the female voiced AI takes on a caring role – as a mother or sister – which places the Karen AI into another limiting female stereotype. Female voiced or embodied AI is expected to have a different role to their male-aligned counterparts, perpetuating the idea that women are more likely to be in the role of the secretary rather than the scientist.Blade Runner’s JoiAnother classic example of artificial intelligence can be found in Blade Runner (1982) and its bio-robotic androids, the Replicants. These artificial beings were designed and manufactured to do the jobs that humans in the future didn’t want: from colonising dangerous alien planets to serving as sex workers. Although stronger and often smarter than their humans creators, they have a limited lifespan that literally stops them from developing sufficiently to work out how to take over.The recent Blade Runner 2049 updates the replicants’ technology and introduces a purchasable intelligent holographic companion called Joi (Ana de Armas). The Joi we are shown in the film is Agent K’s (Ryan Gosling) companion – at first restricted by the projector in his home and later set free, to an extent (Joi is still controlled by K’s movements), when K buys himself a portable device called an Emanator. Joi is a logical extension of today’s digital assistants and is one of the few female AIs to occupy the narrative foreground. Credit: Pegasene/Shutterstock.com Virtual assistants are increasingly popular and present in our everyday lives: literally with Alexa, Cortana, Holly, and Siri, and fictionally in films Samantha (Her), Joi (Blade Runner 2049) and Marvel’s AIs, FRIDAY (Avengers: Infinity War), and Karen (Spider-Man: Homecoming). These names demonstrate the assumption that virtual assistants, from SatNav to Siri, will be voiced by a woman. This reinforces gender stereotypes, expectations, and assumptions about the future of artificial intelligence. But at the end of the day, Joi is a corporate creation that is sold as “everything you want to hear and everything you want to see.” A thing that can be created, adapted, and sold for consumption. Her holographic body makes her seem a little more real but her purpose is similar to those of the virtual assistants discussed here already: to serve often male masters. Subservient womenWhen we can only seemingly imagine an AI as a subservient woman, we reinforce dangerous and outdated stereotypes. What prejudices are perpetuated by putting servile obedient females into our dreams of technology, as well as our current experiences? All this is important because science fiction not only reflects our hopes and fears for the future of science, but also informs it. The imagined futures of the movies inspire those working in tech companies as they develop and update AI, working towards the expectations formed in our fictions.
This year, Remade intends to put 800,000 overhauled iPhones back on the market, at a discount of at least 25 percent off the as-new price.”An iPhone can have three lives, it can be refurbished twice, it’s the strongest product with the longest life,” says Millet.Cheaper Chinese smartphone brands have a stronghold in the developing world, and are seen as especially disposable. Apple and Samsung have been touting their environmental credentials, but the production process inevitably carries a cost.That include carbon emissions along with environmental degradation from the extraction of raw materials such as the metal cobalt, used in lithium-ion batteries, much of it sourced from mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Erwann Fangeat, an engineer at the French Environment and Energy Management Agency, praised operations like Remade. Boxes for refurbished iPhones at the “Remade” plant, where high-end mobiles are reconditioned, in Poilley, northwestern France. ‘Three lives’ Bigger, pricier iPhone expected at Apple event Wednesday One company in northern France is doing its profitable best to give an environmental makeover to smartphones, whose circuitry, batteries and plastics have become a polluting blight over the past decade. With their rapid life cycles and—for the cheaper brands—falling prices, many mobiles have become disposable items for consumers keen to move on to the latest model.But out of a large warehouse staffed by white-coated workers in Normandy, the Remade company is embracing a different approach, reconditioning thousands of Apple iPhones every day under the entrepreneurial eye of its 39-year-old boss, Matthieu Millet.He is “Matthieu” to his staff, wears jeans and sneakers, and has installed a piano in the company lobby, bringing a touch of Silicon Valley start-up culture to this windswept pocket of France facing England.Aged just 23, he bought out the TV repair business he worked for at the time and, in 2014, spotted the potential for refurbishing iPhones to tap into a market where even second hand, Apple products command a premium price.Remade—its avowedly English name another nod to US tech—reported turnover of 23 million euros ($26 million) in the first year it began overhauling iPhones.Last year that had swelled to 130 million euros and Millet is adding 200 jobs to the workforce of 850, banking on “very strong growth” this year. Remade, a company in northern France, is making a profit by reconditioning older iPhone models © 2018 AFP The new iPhone XS and XS Max costs upwards of $1,000/euros This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “We know how to disassemble everything, reassemble everything. The product must not only work, it must work perfectly as intended,” he said. The old phones are shipped in from telecom operators not just in Europe but the United States, whose customers have upgraded to newer models.Environmentalists complain that the spent phones all too often get dumped in landfills in the West, or farmed out to regulation-light parts of Africa and Asia where workers are forced to breathe in toxic fumes as they extract and recycle the raw materials built into the devices.Since the first iPhone’s debut in 2007, 7.1 billion smartphones have been produced worldwide but less than 20 percent of all “e-waste” including phones is recycled, according to Greenpeace.That represents a business opportunity for the likes of Millet, who is cashing in as a new top-of-the-range iPhone XS series tops 1,000 dollars/euros. Explore further “The product life of a smartphone is at least five or six years but 88 percent of French people change their smartphone while the old one still works and has value,” he said.”The longer you extend the life of the product, the more it reduces its environmental impact because it delays the fabrication of a new smartphone,” he added, noting that refurbishing an iPhone emits 90 percent less carbon dioxide than making one from scratch.That offers Millet another way to cash in, via the European Union’s “cap and trade” emissions scheme, which gives greener companies a market to sell leftover carbon credits to more polluting concerns.He hopes to obtain 100,000 tonnes of carbon credit this year, translating into millions extra for Remade’s bottom line.”I’m not Greenpeace,” an unapologetic Millet said.”But it makes me happy to have this (business) model, to know that it’s good for people and the planet.” Citation: French firm refurbishes earnings via old iPhones (2018, November 13) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-11-french-firm-refurbishes-iphones.html The first Apple iPhone, launched in 2007 and the iPhone X, launched 10 years after.
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The development was announced by the governor through the senior special adviser to the governor on security, “If you don’t have a running mate, did not state the reason for the suicidal message. that it’s not going to draw the amount of participation from the private sector and foreign companies like it did initially, will be a sight. dribble and move into the opponents half. which includes sold and unsold smartphones. however, True legend in the game! See Steve Jobs’ Legacy in 16 Photos 1976 Apple I was Apple’s first computer.
so the facility can move treated water from the facility to the Red River—right now, The Director of the Local Government Administration (DLGA) in the council.