Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Mankind at the Turning Point

From Information Clearing House :

The Club of Rome is a premiere think tank composed of approximately 100 members including leading scientists, philosophers, political advisors and many other characters who lurk in the shadows of power. This series of articles described the major conclusions of the 1974 book Mankind at the Turning Point: The Second Report to The Club of Rome [1]. Part 1 described their desire for the development of a totalitarian world system presented under the euphemism of an "organic society". Part 2 described the need to create a new value system to ensure the acceptance of the upcoming world government. This new value system will be based on a "world consciousness."

Mankind at the Turning Point used an absurd, exponentially based computer model of the world system in an attempt to hide their predetermined conclusions behind the veil of science. One of the main scenarios developed by the model was an analysis of the price of oil. This was an obvious choice due to the importance of oil to the world economy and the Middle East oil crisis which began the previous year (1973). The conclusion of this analysis was that an optimal price exists for oil. A price too high, would encourage development of alternatives and result in long-term losses to the exporting nations. A price too low, would encourage over use and resource depletion which would result in long-term losses of the importing nations who would not have sufficient time to develop alternatives. Therefore, there existed an "optimal" price for oil and that the only way to obtain this price was through cooperation. Naturally, an optimal price would exist for all commodities and the only way to obtain these prices was a planned world economy. After all, a planned economy was working so well in the Soviet Union, why not extend it to the rest of the world?

~ read on... ~

'The realization that capitalists, not the proletariat, are the ones bringing down the system'

If you walk through London's High Gate cemetery and wander over to the grave of the late Karl Marx and then listen closely with your ear to the ground, you might hear a repetitive murmur of the phrase "I told you so" in a distinctly German inflected accent.

You might also see the earth moving ever so slightly as what's left of the bones below turn over in the realization that capitalists, not the proletariat, are the ones bringing down the system.

Fellow blogger Ian Williams, a former disciple of the bearded prophet, is now chanting, "Shareholders of the world unite" in recognition of the way the world is changing. The fall of Bear Sterns and the collapse of confidence in our financial system is a profound turning point.

When you turn this rock over -- and not just England's Northern Rock bank that failed earlier -- you see a seamy swamp of delusion, and deception, with `Wall Street worms slithering off to their condos in Colorado or their hangouts in the Hamptons.

This could be the end of an era of legalized greed, aided and enabled by the deregulation policies of the Busheviks with the active complicity of so many bi-partisan worshippers at the temple of the Free Market...

~ read on... ~

My Lai probe hid policy that led to massacre

The directive in question, a copy of which has been obtained by Inter Press Service, makes it clear that the policy of humane treatment did not extend to civilians in areas which had been under long-term communist rule, as was the case with My Lai. That revelation would have placed the responsibility for the orders on the My Lai operation squarely on Westmoreland's shoulders.

The Peers report found that the troops who entered My Lai and three other hamlets of the village of Son My had been led to believe that everyone in the village should be killed. Testimony before the Peers inquiry also showed that the platoon leaders involved in the operation had been given that same message by two company commanders.

The report concluded that the task force commander responsible for the operation, Colonel Frank Barker, had failed to "make clear any distinctions between combatants and non-combatants in their orders and instructions". The result, it stated, was that he had "conveyed an understanding that only the enemy remained" in My Lai.

[ ... ]

But the directive made it clear that this motivation for humane treatment of civilians did not apply to those who had been under long-term communist rule. A key point in the directive said, "Specified strike zones should be configured to exclude populated areas, except those in accepted VC bases."

The term "accepted VC bases" referred to large parts of South Vietnam, including Son My village and most of Quang Ngai province, where the Viet Minh movement had mobilized the population to fight against the French and where the communist movement had strong organizations throughout the Diem regime and in the early years of the US war in Vietnam.

The directive thus made it clear the US military command's policy was to consider the civilian population in long-term communist base areas as the enemy which could be subjected to the same treatment as communist military personnel. The Peers report description - which avoided quoting directly from the document - effectively covered up the actual intention of the command's policy toward non-combatants in places like My Lai.

Directive 525-3 is not the only piece of evidence pointing to a military command policy of treating non-combatants in Viet Cong base areas as subject to indiscriminate violence. In his own memoirs published in 1976, Westmoreland himself wrote that, once the "free fire zones" were established, "anybody who remained had to be considered an enemy combatant", and operations in those areas "could be conducted without fear of civilian casualties".

~ more... ~

Crises with 'the crucial enabling role of China' in common

One sobering aspect of the tragedy of Tibet is to consider a list of the places in the world where abuses of human rights are most common. Darfur in Sudan, Zimbabwe, North Korea, Myanmar (or Burma), Uzbekistan and Tibet would come high on most peoples' lists.

And what they have in common is the crucial enabling role of China. Tibet, where the official Chinese figure of 10 dead in the disturbances of the last four days is dwarfed by the more reliable reports from inside the country of more than 100 dead, has been under direct Chinese rule since 1951.

Tibet has been ruled with an iron hand, while also being colonized by the deliberate immigration of vast numbers of Han Chinese as part of what the Dalai Lama calls "cultural genocide." Han Chinese shopkeepers have been a particular target of the latest riots.

It should not be forgotten that China's current leader, Hu Jintao, boasts in his credentials for high office his ruthless role in crushing the last round of Tibetan unrest in 1989-90, when he was party chief in Lhasa.

~ from Walker's World: China in Tibet ~

'We were not put on this Earth to work, work, work'

From Doing More With Less - In defense of creative loafing

" ... We may debate the purpose of life, or whether it even has a purpose, but one thing we can all agree on is that we were not put on this Earth to work, work, work. To be the master of one's time and oneself is the obvious ideal. Most people don't experience this until retirement, when they're old and broken down, when they have to go to the bathroom every five minutes, and no one will have sex with them without advance cash payment. I say f--k that, I'm having my golden years now. And they are golden! Youth is not being wasted on this youth.

Every once in a while I'll find myself downtown in the middle of the day and I'll see all the drones hustling this way and that with their pinched little waddles, looking at their watches and pouring Starbucks into their faces, and I'll think, my God, I'm the luckiest bastard alive. Maybe I'll have to pay for it on the back end and work as a Wal-Mart greeter when I'm 85, but then again, I'll have a lot of company. ... "

Author of 'The Little Prince' shot down, former pilot confesses

From 'I shot French literary hero out of the sky' :

The 63-year-old mystery surrounding the death of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, the celebrated French aviator and author of the beloved book Le Petit Prince, has finally been solved. An 88-year-old Luftwaffe veteran has confessed to shooting down the writer's plane over the Mediterranean on 31 July, 1944.

Saint-Exupéry was last seen alive when he took off in his Lockheed Lightning P-38 from Borgo air base in Corsica at around 14:30.

He was 44 when he died and his body has never been found.

"If I had known, I wouldn't have fired," lamented the former Luftwaffe pilot, Horst Rippert, who greatly admired the author and kept the secret of how he died until he was tracked down by a German historian.

Yassin Aref's Struggle for Justice in Police State America

Because of his faith and ethnicity, Aref was victimized by US "justice" in a post-9/11 climate of fear. He's an Iraqi Kurd who emigrated to the US as a UN refugee in 1999 with his wife and three young children. He's now in federal prison but committed no crime. He's also the author of a poignant memoir/autobiography titled "Son of Mountains: My Life as a Kurd and a Terror Suspect." He wrote it in custody at Troy, New York's Rensselaer County Jail after his wrongful conviction in October 2006.

It's his story in prose and poetry covering much more than his arrest, conviction and imprisonment. It's an account of an early life in poverty, his struggle to survive, his time in exile, of a two-time immigrant, and a UN refugee who sought peace and freedom in America but instead was persecuted. It's his story of wrongful conviction, of grave injustice, of a militarized state, of his constitutional rights denied, of despotism run amuck, of a nation where no one is safe, where many hundreds like him are imprisoned, and where we're all Yassins in police state America.

The story concludes with a powerful essay by pro bono lawyer, Stephen Downs, that details how Yassin was framed and wrongfully convicted. It explains how he "never before in (his) professional life (of over 35 years) encountered a deliberate frame-up. (He) was familiar with prosecutorial abuses" wrongful convictions, "sloppy police work, concealment of errors, hubris and arrogance, but what happened to Yassin was (much) different."

~ more... ~

Belgium to make $170m restitution for Holocaust role

Yesterday, Belgium's banks and government sought to make material amends, announcing $170 million in restitution for the Jewish community and families of Holocaust survivors whose property and goods were looted by Nazi occupiers.

Overall, $54 million will be paid to individual claimants, with the rest going to a Jewish trust that will help the poor and keep the memory of the horrors of World War II alive.

"In a certain way, justice has been done. Unfortunately, there are people who never came back" from the Nazi death camps, said Eli Ringer, the cochair of the committee on the restitution of Jewish assets.

Some 50,000 Jews lived in Belgium in the 1930s and about half died in the Holocaust.

~ more... ~

Protesters target Afghan war

Among those speaking were Irene Mathyssen, NDP MP for London-Fanshawe, and Josh Randall, a war resister who went absent without leave from the United States military.

The speakers all had similar messages: support the troops by bringing them home from Afghanistan.

Darius Mirshahi, president of Fanshawe College's social justice club and an organizer of yesterday's protest, is optimistic, but not unrealistic.

"I don't think just peaceful protesting is going to stop everything," he said.

"But I think it's a very important part of what we need to do."

Even the decision to hold the London event a day later than the other protests was made strategically, in order to allow people to attend other protests taking place Saturday.

They were held to mark the five-year anniversary of the Iraq war that began on March 20, 2003.

~ more... ~

Somalia's message to the world: Get Ethiopia off our back

President George Bush recently visited five African countries — Ghana, Liberia, Tanzania, Benin and Rwanda — and sent his Secretary of State to Kenya to try to end the political crisis there. But when it comes to Somalia, the Bush administration is not only silent but openly supports Ethiopia's occupation. The situation there is now far worse than it was in December of 2006, before Addis Ababa's invasion.

In Mogadishu and much of Somalia, the American-supported Ethiopian intervention caused the deaths of more than 6,000 Somalis. According to United Nations officials, the humanitarian crisis in Somalia is "worse than Darfur" — more than a million Somalis fled their homes.

The Ethiopian occupation did not deliver the outcome that Washington desired — crushing the Islamists, creating a secure environment and leaving the country quickly. Instead, after more than a year of occupation, the picture is one of assassinations, bombings, looting, media repression and systematic displacement. Worse, there is no end in sight to the quagmire.

~ read on... ~

'Liberation through devastation'

Iraq's “Day of Liberation” – as George W. Bush called it – was supposed to begin with a bombardment consisting of 3,000 U.S. missiles delivered over 48 hours, 10 times the number of bombs dropped during the first two days of the Persian Gulf War in 1991.

Officials, who were briefed on the plans, said the goal was to so stun the Iraqis that they would simply submit to the overwhelming force demonstrated by the U.S. military. Administration officials dubbed the strategy “shock and awe.”

In his 2003 State of the Union speech, Bush had addressed the “brave and oppressed people of Iraq” with the reassuring message that “your enemy is not surrounding your country – your enemy is ruling your country.”

Bush promised that the day that Saddam Hussein and his regime “are removed from power will be the day of your liberation.”

But never before in history had a dominant world power planned to strike a much weaker nation in a preemptive war with such ferocity. It would be liberation through devastation.

Many projections expected the deaths of thousands of Iraqi non-combatants, no matter how targeted or precise the U.S. weapons. For those civilians, their end would come in the dark terror of crushing concrete or in the blinding flash of high explosives.

~ from Iraq War as War Crime (Part One) ~

Native Americans work to end violence

Six Directions, Penn's Native American interest organization, and Amnesty International co-presented a talk highlighting a movement to end violence against Native American women. The dialogue specifically focused on The Amnesty Report: Maze of Injustice, which documents and studies the failure of the United States to protect indigenous women from sexual violence.

The discussion featured speaker Andrea Smith, a longtime Native American activist and scholar. Among Smith's merits, she coordinated Amnesty International's research project Maze of Injustice, as well as serving as the founder of INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence, which empowers women through dialogue and activism.

Smith began the talk by highlighting the problems of patriarchal dominance in Native American communities. Specifically, Smith discussed how indigenous women historically were portrayed as impure and regarded as less than human, instilling the current spirit of violence. She added that this violence against Native American women is codified into federal law and practice.

~ more... ~

Big day at the high court (U.S.)

After weeks of silence, the U.S. Supreme Court is back at the top of the news. On Monday, the justices announced they will weigh in on the divisive issue of indecency. And today, the court will hear arguments on a potentially historic Second Amendment case.

Indeed, Heller v. District of Columbia stands to become the court's seminal ruling on gun ownership.

The District of Columbia is appealing a ruling by the city's U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the capital's 32-year-old handgun ban is unconstitutional. The District had rejected an application from 65-year-old security guard Dick Heller to store his sidearm at his home for self-defense purposes. But Mr. Heller's attorneys successfully argued that the city law, which requires approved handguns and rifles to be disassembled and locked up separate from ammunition, violated his Second Amendment rights.

[ ... ]

In other business, the high court agreed Monday to consider whether the federal government can punish broadcasters for airing fleeting obscenities, such as the "f-bombs" occasionally uttered by celebrities on live awards shows.

After years of delineating between the use of certain offensive words as nouns or adjectives, the Federal Communications Commission ramped up its intolerance for such language, arguing that the First Amendment right to free speech goes out the door if impressionable children could be tuning in.

~ more... ~

David Ray Griffin's Mass Media Breakthru for 911 Truth

Breaking the corporate media blockade.

The work of the 9/11 Truth movement is exposed to millions on national media, who have NEVER heard of it.

You'd think that we'd want more of this. It can happen!

In Tod Fletcher's post at 911blogger, he does a brilliant analysis of David Ray Griffin's latest work, and how it focuses entirely on contradictory statements made by members of the Bush administration, government departments and agencies, and official bodies such as the 9/11 Commission.

~ read  on... ~

'666' in the news

House panel OKs child-welfare office

A House committee approved a bill yesterday to create a separate state office to work on reducing the disproportionate number of African Americans in the child welfare system.

Calling it a "very important issue," Rep. Darryl Owens, D-Louisville, sponsor of House Bill 666, said he doesn't want the state to lose ground on a project started last year.

His bill, approved by the House Health and Welfare Committee, would create the office within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

Students sound off on favorite alternatives to pi
"Seven. My favorite number used to be six, but then I heard about the whole 666 thing, so went one higher."

US government to reimburse 666 million dollars to 667 hospitals
A Medicare reimbursement lawsuit has resulted in a decision to pay out $666 million to 667 hospitals.

The suit was brought on the basis of changes in Medicare reimbursement policies dating to the Reagan administration in 1986 involving disproportionate-share payments.

Gym quickly renamed to avoid '666' in address
The $11.8 million addition to Yokota's Samurai Fitness Center isn't quite ready, but base officials recently switched the building number from 666 to 665, apparently not wishing to stamp the new facility with the “Mark of the Beast.”

“When I first saw it, I just busted out laughing,” recalls fitness center director Pat Coleman. “I asked the contractors, 'Do you know what “666” means?' They said, 'Is it for good luck?' I said, 'No, it's like the number “4” in Japan. If we keep it “666,” we're gonna have to bless that building many, many times.'

Colombia and Venezuela hold peace concert at border

Tens of thousands of people have attended a peace concert on the border between Colombia and Venezuela in an effort to ease the rift between the two nations.

Venezuela briefly broke off diplomatic ties with Colombia earlier this month after Colombian troops launched a raid on a rebel camp inside Ecuador.

~ from Australia's ABC News ~

Pravda: Vitamin E supplements enhance lung cancer risk

In those in the new study who developed lung cancer, the researchers saw a small increased risk associated with vitamin E supplements in addition to the expected links to smoking, family history and age.

This amounted to a 28 percent increased risk of developing lung cancer for those taking vitamin E supplements at a dose of 400 mg daily for 10 years, the researchers said.

~ more... ~

Ark Of The Covenant stolen from Zimbabwe Museum?

Ephraim Sadiki of Mberengwe central Zimbabawe told me last week that he had been to Harare to see the Ark after reading a story about its discovery in Time Magazine. When he got to the museum officials sent him away and did not permit him to see it.

He returned the following day and was told it had disappeared. He believes that someone has stolen it.

~ more... ~

[ See also Time article A Lead on the Ark of the Covenant ]

The euro could surpass the dollar within ten years

One of the world's leading international economists explains how the euro could surpass the dollar as the premier international currency and examines the geopolitical implications of such a shift.

The International Economy recently asked experts: Ten years from now, which will likely be the next great global currency?

My answer is that it just might be the euro. Contrary to fevered popular speculation in the 1990s, the yen and the mark never had the potential to challenge the dollar as the leading international currency: their home economies were smaller than the US and their financial markets less well-developed and liquid than New York. The euro, however, is a credible challenger: Euroland is roughly as big as the United States, and the euro has shown itself a better store of value than the dollar.

To be sure, rankings of international currencies change only very slowly. Although the US surpassed the UK in economic size in 1872, in exports in 1915, and as a net creditor in 1917, the dollar did not surpass the pound as number one international currency until 1945. Thus one must account for the lags. In 2005, when Menzie Chinn and I used historical data on central bank holdings of foreign exchange reserves to estimate the determinants, even our pessimistic scenarios did not have the euro overtaking the dollar until 2022. Thus we could not have asserted that the dollar would be dethroned “ten years from now.”

But the dollar has continued to lose ground. We have now updated our calculations, particularly to recognize that London is usurping Frankfurt's role as the financial capital of the euro, notwithstanding that the UK remains outside of EMU. Now we find that the tipping point could come within the ten-year horizon: the euro could overtake the dollar even as early as 2015.

~ read on... ~

The story of borshch

Delightful, long article in the Guardian Online, spotted by A Fistful of Euros.

On the afternoon of March 31 2000, Boris Pasternak, editor-in-chief of the Moscow publishing house Polifakt, drove to the suburb of Podolsk to look up one of his authors, the food writer and historian Vilyam Pokhlebkin. Pokhlebkin was late delivering the final manuscript of his new book, A Century Of Cooking, and had failed either to turn up for a scheduled meeting or to respond to telegrams. The writer had no phone. He had no fridge or TV, either, although he did have 50,000 books crammed into his apartment...

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court

Congress in 1978 established the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court as a special court and authorized the Chief Justice of the United States to designate seven federal district court judges to review applications for warrants related to national security investigations. Judges serve for staggered, non-renewable terms of no more than seven years, and must be from different judicial circuits. The provisions for the court were part of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (92 Stat. 1783), which required the government, before it commenced certain kinds of intelligence gathering operations within the United States, to obtain a judicial warrant similar to that required in criminal investigations. The legislation was a response to a report of the Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities (the “Church Committee”), which detailed allegations of executive branch abuses of its authority to conduct domestic electronic surveillance in the interest of national security. Congress also was responding to the Supreme Court's suggestion in a 1972 case that under the Fourth Amendment some kind of judicial warrant might be required to conduct national security related investigations.

Warrant applications under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act are drafted by attorneys in the General Counsel's Office at the National Security Agency at the request of an officer of one of the federal intelligence agencies. Each application must contain the Attorney General's certification that the target of the proposed surveillance is either a “foreign power” or “the agent of a foreign power” and, in the case of a U.S. citizen or resident alien, that the target may be involved in the commission of a crime.

The judges of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court travel to Washington, D.C., to hear warrant applications on a rotating basis. To ensure that the court can convene on short notice, at least one of the judges is required to be a member of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The act of 1978 also established a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review, presided over by three district or appeals court judges designated by the Chief Justice, to review, at the government's request, the decisions the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Because of the almost perfect record of the Department of Justice in obtaining the surveillance warrants and other powers it requested from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, the review court had no occasion to meet until 2002. The USA Patriot Act of 2001 (115 Stat. 272) expanded the time periods for which the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court can authorize surveillance and increased the number of judges serving the court from seven to eleven.

~ link ~

The Illusion of Democracy

From Democracy is an Illusion :

Quiqley, a Professor of History at the Foreign Service School at Georgetown University was a trusted insider who had access to their private archives. He felt the plot, which he supported, was too important to be kept hidden. However, shortly after publication, his book was taken off the market.

Cleon Skoussen was an FBI agent for 16 years and the Police Chief of Salt Lake City for four years. His "The Naked Capitalist" distills the most shocking evidence from Quigley's daunting 1300-page book.

At just 122 pages, "The Naked Capitalist" (1970) is a concise, lucid and absolutely convincing account of the international banker conspiracy. Historians have betrayed the public trust by largely ignoring this material.


Quigley confirms that a network of banking dynasties has, in Skousen's words, "acquired a choke-hold on the affairs of practically the entire human race." According to Quigley, they include "Baring, Lazard, Erlanger, Warburg, Schroder, Selingman, the Speyers, Mirabaud, Malet, and above all Rothschild and Morgan." (Citations are from Tragedy and Hope, 51-52)

Quigley confirms that, starting with the Bank of England in 1694, these dynasties organized themselves in a system of central banks that charge their respective nations billions of dollars in interest for the privilege of using currency backed by the nations' own credit. In other words, they have carried off a swindle of monstrous proportions.

From Democracy and Illusion :
I diagnosed the problem as follows. American democracy has a single point of failure. If the people's ability to vote candidates in and out of office has no meaningful influence on the decisions they make while in office, then democracy does not exist, because the will of the people has no influence on policy. Money has broken that link. Once the people admit a candidate in the gate, they have no further say in what he does, because his exclusive constituency becomes the people who give him the dollars for his next campaign. Though the voters have the authority to remove the politician from office on the next go round, two, four or six years later, this authority is easily defeated by a game involving media-disseminated disinformation, public complacency and short memory, and a byzantine legislative system which shields legislators from being held accountable for the choices they make.

Conceding truth to the adage: 'We have found the enemy and he is us' - The Illusion of Democracy – If We Can Keep It :
By: Peter Chamberlin

In the name of patriotism, we have participated in a planned deception to create a state of permanent war. In the name of profit, America has been sacrificed on the altar of the god of war, to create a global empire based on the mass-marketing of death.

“We are opposed...by a ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence--on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations.

Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. It conducts the [war] with a war-time discipline no democracy would ever hope or wish to match...” –JFK, 1961 http://www.jfklibrary.org/Historical+Resources/Archives/Reference+Desk/S...

The official version of this speech, is that Kennedy was describing an international communist conspiracy in this address, but then, the official version of the conspiracy that later killed him was that it was the work of a “lone assassin,” firing magic bullets. The alternative view is that Kennedy was giving us a hidden warning of the secret “power behind the throne,” otherwise known as the “military/industrial complex.”

Over the many decades since President Kennedy uttered this warning, “the conspiracy” has undermined American society. In the process it corrupted three major religions and killed millions worldwide, in order to bring us to the precipice of permanent perpetual war. The next war will take us over that threshold. As citizens in the last remaining bastion of democracy on the face of the earth, we have a responsibility to prevent that final war from beginning. All we have to do now is figure out how to do it.
Kennedy always knew that this dreadful day would come, that one day Americans would have to choose between freedom and the illusion of security. He had heard his predecessor President Dwight D. Eisenhower, prophetically warn of the inevitable future danger that would arise from the military/industrial complex and “the disastrous rise of misplaced power.”

[ ... ]

The “war on terrorism” is a euphemism for a war on democracy. The purpose of the entire production is to use democracy, to eliminate democracy. Whether it be here in America, or in England, or in any other country where we have relations, American foreign policy is to use democracy as a tool for burying freedom. The war was created by us (manipulating many foreign players to do our will), to propel a fascist vision of perpetual world war, which will forever justify the militarization of our society and every democracy within reach.

Argentina, Brazil to drop U.S. dollar in bilateral commercial transactions

Argentina and Brazil are to scrap bilateral commercial transactions in U.S. dollars and start using their own currencies from August, an official in charge of currency settlement at the Argentine Central Bank said here Saturday.

The new payment system is aimed at reducing costs in commercial transactions and would benefit small and medium-sized enterprises, the official said.

Under the new system, there will be a unified exchange rate between the real and peso, the so-called reference rate, which will be applied by Brazilian and Argentine central banks at the end of each day.

~ more... ~

Science studies the 'Ouzo Effect'

From Science Daily :

Scientists studying the cloudy emulsions produced by anise-flavored liquors such as Ouzo have discovered new molecular insights into their formation, findings that could lead to the design of better commercial emulsions used in making pharmaceuticals, food products, cosmetics and other materials.
The original study may be found here.


image from http://www.spitting-image.net

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