What is the point of public transport?

rmv-s-bahnWhat is the point of having public transport? What’s it for? That’s what I was thinking about driving around Frankfurt-am-Main. You see, in my mind, the point of public transport was always to provide a means of transport that is cheaper than driving cars. This includes providing transport for those who cannot afford cars, that’s the same thing. Interestingly, it does not seem to be the case in Germany.

The public fare from Darmstadt to Frankfurt-am-Main with the S-Bahn (suburban train) is 8 euro one way. The distance is only 35 kilometres center to center, so by car you would spend less than 4 Euro including maintenance costs and depreciation. Even if you were to drive alone, it would make perfect sense to go by car instead of public transport.

So it turns out that the public transport in Germany is twice as expensive as driving cars. What is it for then?

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Rumours from Langley: Ukrainian CIA agents mass “suicide”

Aerial_view_of_the_Central_Intelligence_Agency_headquarters,_Langley,_Virginia_16449vThere were rumours from the CIA in Langley that several Ukrainian operatives have committed suicide. First, there were three deaths, then – two more, bringing the count of CIA agents suddenly committing suicide to five. They all worked for the department dealing with Ukraine.

It appears that, demanding to stop the war in Ukraine in the negotiations with the US, Western politicians used carelessly the argument that the rebels of the South-East of Ukraine are not terrorists, but citizens who are fighting against the infringement of their legitimate civil rights. Such things are never mentioned publicly, but in private talks the Europeans decided to show that the Americans could not fool them.

In response, the overseas “partners” developed a series of operations, whose mission is to show Europe the “true face” of the brutal pro-Russian separatists. The plan included the bombings of children and medical facilities in central and western Ukraine, away from the area of military operations. A task was set to seek to maximize the number of casualties.

Saboteur mercenaries from American PMCs were entrusted with the execution in the field, while the Ukrainian department of the CIA should provide logistics and cover.

The head of the military section of Ukrainian CIA thought the plan was too risky, and he shared his thoughts with his superior, from whom he received the answer: “Execute. You can not imagine what is at stake.”

That answer did not satisfy the subordinate. In the Ukrainian section, except the military, there are several sections: political and so on. The worried senior official, in violation of all rules, shared his concerns with peers officers – the heads of the other two sections, and together they decided to take action to prevent the implementation of the controversial order, even if they would have to appeal to the US Senate.

And these three were the first “suicides”, but it turned out that the leak has already occurred. Two more had to be eliminated.

In the middle of the day staff were ordered to go home, but almost all of the staff of Ukrainian department, about 25 people, fearing for their lives, gathered in the lobby. They called on passing by colleagues not to believe, should they allegedly commit suicide in the near future.

Source: http://pravosudija.net/article/tragedii-v-lengli-chast-iii

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German TV pours cheap anti-Russian propaganda

gunter-jauchState television in Germany continues to brainwash their fellow citizens, despite a growing resentment on the part of ordinary Germans. After all, they are the ones that have to pay for this circus from their taxes.

This time Günther Jauch and his talk show took cheap anti-Russian propaganda to new heights on March 8. The theme of the talk show – “Putin’s Russia on the road to dictatorship?” – already did not bode any meaningful discussion. The portal Propagandaschau (“Propaganda Review”) made an apt remark that one could ask any number of questions that would be equally meaningful, like: “Obama’s Presidency – on the way to the Apartheid?”, meaning, of course, the hundreds of American citizens of African descent killed by US soldiers recently in protests around the country.

One could expect that, after the popular German host Günther Jauch publicly expressed regret that “Putin will not die soon” in November last year, anything goes. And he stands up to the expectations, making new produce in the best tradition of Goebbels’s propaganda.

To create the proper atmosphere at his talk show on March 8, Jauch invited the daughter of the late Nemtsov and corresponded with Garry Kasparov in New York, who, however, did not say anything new, repeating the mantra of “the hope of internal destabilization of Russia and the Putin regime lies in falling oil prices and the collapse of the ruble.”

gunter-jauch-nemzow-tochter

Fortunately, there were some guests with a mind unclouded by propaganda in the studio. To the question of whether things would get better if Putin was displaced, Chairman of the German-Russian Forum Matthias Platzeck reasonably noticed: “Let’s do some theoretical reflection and ask ourselves a  practical question – who will replace him? What will happen then? Will it be someone who meets our expectations? The answer is – no! ”

Platzeck also stressed that, with the current level of support for the opposition in Russia, the hopes for a quick displacement of Putin should be abandoned. Then, in defiance of Kasparov’s critique of the policies of the Federal Chancellor Merkel, he praised the Chancellor for leading negotiations on the settlement of the crisis in the Donbass area of Ukraine. His words were met with a thunderous applause by the audience.

The culmination of the talk show came at the end. After Platzeck suggested that Europe should intensify its dialogue with Russia and liberalize the visa regime, the host of the show theatrically turned to Nemtsov’s daughter with a question: “Don’t you think that now the struggle for democracy is completely lost, especially because Putin has huge support among Russians?” The answer was frank nonsense along the lines of “Putin is not interested in Russians traveling abroad”, “very few Russians can afford to travel abroad,” and that the “regime” will soon introduce the “exit visas” to enforce the isolation of the country.

In general, one can only wish Günther Jauch more such guests as Kasparov and Nemtsova and then rename his show from “political” to “stand-up comedy”.

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More gullible is more “democratic”

japan-elections-520x520Japan is lowering the voting age to 18 from 20, giving no other explanation then “it is appropriate”.

As we know, the word and the practice of “democracy” comes from ancient Greek. The Greek established that the decisions could be taken by a vote between a number of distinguished members of society that were called the “demos”. The number of people who had the right to vote and were called “demos” was limited and those were supposedly the most clever and responsible members of the society.

Those restrictions could be traced nearly to modern times with “demos” being gradually extended to all those grown up men who were given the right to vote, assuming that they were mature enough to have the best interests of the society as a whole at heart. Unfortunately, with the widening of the voting “demos” the quality of decisions deteriorated accordingly.

Now we include nearly the whole society in the “demos” and we seem to expect the 18 year old boys and girls to be mature enough to have the best interests of the society at heart. That is definitely a perversion of the original philosophy and practice, isn’t it?

The young can be easily manipulated. They do not have the experience, the maturity, the cunning of the elder to see through the manipulations and clearly understand what is best for the country. They do not possess long-term views or wide perspectives. What kind of decisions can we expect from them? We can expect that they will go with whomever gives them the most convincing story, that is not the most truthful, not the most practical, nor the most needed, but simply the most attractively told.

Well, that’s easy to see now. That’s where the marketing comes in. This move to include younger people into the voting “demos” is nothing else than a trick to make the “demos” more gullible and easy to manipulate. Welcome to “democracy”.

capitalist-democracy-illustrated1

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Nobel Committee Asks Obama To Return Peace Prize

obama-peace-prizeThorbjorn Jagland, chairman of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee, said today that President Obama “really ought to consider” returning his Nobel Peace Prize Medal immediately, including the “really nice” case it came in.

Jagland, flanked by the other four members of the Committee, said they’d never before asked for the return of a Peace Prize, “even from a damnable war-criminal like Kissinger,” but that the 10% drawdown in US troops in Afghanistan the President announced last week capped a period of “non-Peace-Prize-winner-type behavior” in 2011.  “Guantanamo’s still open. There’s bombing Libya. There’s blowing bin Laden away rather than putting him on trial. Now a few US troops go home, but the US will be occupying Afghanistan until 2014 and beyond. Don’t even get me started on Yemen!”

The Committee awarded Obama the coveted prize in 2009 after he made a series of speeches in the first months of his presidency, which convinced the Peace Prize Committee that he was: “creating a new climate of…multilateral diplomacy…an emphasis on the role of the United Nations…of dialogue and negotiations as instruments for resolving international conflicts…and a vision of world free of nuclear arms.”

“Boy oh boy!” added Jagland. “Did we regret that press release!”

Thorbjorn Jagland and members of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee celebrate Norway's annual aquavit-tasting festival.

Thorbjorn Jagland and members of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee
celebrate Norway’s annual aquavit tasting festival.

But, he revealed the committee members were all “legless drunk” the day they voted, as it was the start of Norway’s annual aquavit-tasting festival. The “totally toasted” members listened over and over to replays of Obama’s Cairo speech, tearing up and drinking shots to the glorious future: a black man leading America and the world into a new era of peace, hope and goodwill. “For a few hours we were all 18 year-old students again at the beautiful, occasionally sunny University of Bergen! Oh, how we cried for joy!”

The chairman said the committee weren’t “going to be pills” about getting the Prize back because they still “basically really liked” Mr. Obama and that sending it back in a plain package by regular mail would be fine if it would save him the embarrassment of a public return. But added Jagland, “things could get nasty” if the committee didn’t see it by the time they announce the new Peace Prize winner in the fall. He and the committee then excused themselves to resume their celebration of Norway’s annual aquavit-tasting festival.

The White House had no comment. It later announced an aggressive new covert CIA initiative to identify and apprehend Al Qaeda operatives in Scandinavia.

Hilarious, I wish it was true :)
Source: Nobel Committee Asks Obama “Nicely” To Return Peace Prize
And there is more:

The Nobel Peace Prize Committee has twice asked President Obama through diplomatic channels to return his Peace Prize. Now they’re asking “one last time” and there’s nothing diplomatic about it.

Nobel Committee Chairman ThorBjorn Jagland addressed an overflow press conference this morning in Oslo. The normally urbane Chairman referred several times to the President as “Obomber”, compared his “re-invasion” of Iraq to that of “the sniveling war-criminal Dick Cheney” and demanded that his Peace Prize be returned to the Committee forthwith together with the “beautiful box” it came in.

Two years ago after the bombing of Libya, the assassination of Osama bin Laden and Guantanamo remaining open, the Committee quietly asked the President to consider returning his Peace Prize, in a brown paper package by regular mail if he preferred so as to avoid embarrassment. They heard nothing from the White House.

In 2013 as US drone attacks increased dramatically the Committee tried again to get Obama’s medal back adding that he could keep the very expensive box it came in. They even offered him a Consolation Nobel Peace Prize. Still nothing.

Now according to Chairman Jagland it’s “No more Mr Nice Guy” Unless the Peace Prize is returned immediately, he announced total cut-off of all Scandinavian exports to the US. “Not a single Volvo or SAAB or attractive wool cap with fake wool pigtails will find its way to American ports! Not one Swedish meatball will ever again pass American lips!”

White House spokesman Josh Earnest responded to the threat: “Actually the President doesn’t remember winning the Nobel Peace Prize. But if he did, he thinks he might have given it to Hillary.”

Source: Nobel Committee Nicely Asks Obama To Return Peace Prize… Again

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We don’t know shit about climate and German engineers are worthless

I just came across a yet another stunning realization: we don’t know shit about our climate and its changes … and German engineers are worthless. These two are connected. Allow me to explain.

I can see the lot of renovation of not-so-old houses across Europe. There seems to be no street in Germany, for example, where a house would not be renovated to insulate it from the cold. That’s what they do everywhere: they put heat insulation around the houses, all of them. The houses will be all smugly wrapped in colorful warm blankets of insulation soon.

really_coldWhat does it tell us, really? Well, it tells us that the houses built in the last century were not properly isolated from the cold. But this is Germany, right? German engineers are supposed to be the brightest in the world, aren’t they? Why did they not think of the cold winters then?

What could have happened? One, the climate may have changed drastically and they did not adapt the construction to the cold winters. That means they are really worthless as engineers as it seems that change of the climate happened a fair bit of time ago. My grandma did not tell me stories of anything resembling tropical or even Mediterranean weather. Still, the houses had thin walls, single glass windows and no heating installations except largely decorative and useless open fireplaces. Those construction workers must have been idiots, as well as must have been idiots the house owners who bought those houses.

On the other hand, they could have noticed the weather but there were no materials like we have now to allow them proper insulation. So they would not be able to do anything then, would they? Well, if you have ever been in Russia, you would have noticed that they built double-walled, double-glazed houses with proper heating all through the last century. Apparently, those engineers had the materials and instruments to build proper warm houses. Were German engineers so stupid that they could not even copy the designs?

Well, there we are. The German engineers kept using the designs for a much warmer climate throughout the last century despite the obvious fact that they are not suitable for the much colder climate than Southern Italy. Russians at the same time were building proper houses suitable for the cold winters and well heated. What else can we conclude but that (1) the climate has seriously changed not so long ago and (2) German engineers are worthless?

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My first hate mail!

orangutanI am on the Internet since circa 1995, I have been into many arguments, circles and groups in the meantime. But, today is a special day. I received my first ever hate mail! Hooray! Look at this:

От: DR <dmanukr@gmail.com>
Тема: Russian terror supporter and killer

Сообщение:
Fuck you

Bona fide hate mail. Accept no substitutes. I am so proud. Break out the bubbly, I must be doing something right!

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Who controls ECB (European Central Bank)?

ECBThis is a strange story. We were having a chat after the project meeting finished and somehow the subject of European Central Bank (ECB) came up. I don’t remember why or how but the question was raised: who controls the ECB? Well, I knew that ECB was a company but I did not know details. So I had to have a look. The results are … well, this could have been expected.

Okay, so ECB is a bank, a commercial entity with all European Central Banks as shareholders. No surprises there. So whoever controls the Central Banks of the EU countries – controls the ECB. Now the next question is, of course, who controls the Central Banks?

I did not check them all but I suspect they are all organized the same way: the government (I could not find out how) is the shareholder and owner of the Central Bank. It seems that even where the Central Banks were private, they were nationalized some time ago. So they are all publicly owned. But there is a catch.

You see, the Central Banks have a note on their pages and in the documents that effectively says: “we are not controlled by the government”. I cannot imagine why, but all right, so the Central Banks are not controlled by the government, that’s just the way they are set up. So the owners actually do not control the banks. Who controls them then?

In this case, since there is no other obvious control mechanism, the Board of Directors and, in the first place, the Governor, will be controlling the Central Bank. Again, it seems that all banks in Europe are set up identically. So their management actually controls the Central Banks and therefore controls the ECB. A financial empire, no less. Very well. Who are the management and can we see any clear affiliations there?

And that’s where it got messy. Some countries’ Central Banks do not disclose any information about the governors – those are double suspicious. But all of the others show affiliation with U.S. one way or another. Here is the list of governors and those of their past affiliations that could be easily found.

  • ECB: Mario Draghi, President – Goldman Sachs, World Bank
  • Bank of England: Mark Carney, Governor – Goldman Sachs
  • Bank of France: Christian Noyer, Governor  – IMF, World Bank
  • Deutsche Bundesbank: Jens Weidmann, President – IMF
  • Bank of Greece: Yannis Stournaras, Governor – IMF
  • De Nederlandsche Bank: Klaas Knot, president  – IMF
  • Banca d’Italia: Ignazio Visco, governor – OECD
  • National Bank of Austria: Ewald Nowotny, Governor – EIB; Andreas Ittner, Vice Governor – IMF
  • Banco de España: Luis M. Linde, Governor – Inter-American Development Bank (IADB)
  • Riksbank (Sweden Central Bank): Stefan Ingves, Governor  – IMF
  • Norges Bank: Øystein Olsen, Governor – Center for Economic Analysis; Jon Nicolaisen, Deputy Governor – OECD
  • National Bank of Belgium: Luc Coene, Governor – IMF
  • Bank of Portugal: Carlos da Silva Costa, governor – EIB
  • Banque centrale du Luxembourg: Gaston REINESCH, governor – EIB, BNP Paribas
  • National Bank of Poland: Marek Belka, Head – Columbia University, University of Chicago and London School of Economics, World Bank, JP Morgan
  • Hungarian National Bank: György Matolcsy, Governor – European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
  • National Bank of Romania: Mugur Isărescu, Governor – Romanian Embassy in the United States
  • Bulgarian National Bank: Ivan Iskrov, Governor – US Treasury and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
  • Czech National Bank: Miroslav Singer, Governor – University of Pittsburgh, PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • Bank of Estonia: Ardo Hansson, Governor – World Bank, Harvard University
  • Central Bank of Ireland: Patrick Honohan, Governor – IMF
  • Bank of Latvia: Ilmars Rimsevics, Governor – St. Lawrence University (USA), Clarkson University (USA)
  • National Bank of Slovakia: Jozef Makúch, Governor – IMF, World Bank

There is no information about the governors of the Central Banks of Finland, Denmark, Croatia, Cyprus, Lithuania, Slovenia. What do those have to hide?

Anyhow, it looks like to get to rule the finances of a country you have to follow one of the routes: work at IMF for a while, study and teach in US universities, or work at one of the big US banks or consultancy companies. The research into the control structures of those are left as an exercise for the reader.

So, as far as I can see, the ECB is controlled by U.S. commercial structures. What a surprise.

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