For the Global Thinker

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

BBC Speechless As Trader Tells Truth: "The Collapse Is Coming...And Goldman Rules The World"

In a scary and painfully frank interview a freaked out BBC interviewer is visibly shaken when market trader Alessio Rastani predicts that the "Market is Toast." Apparently there is nothing Euro governments can do.

Watch full 3 minute video here...


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

How to Raise a Global Kid


“I’m doing what parents have done for many years,” Jim Rogers says. “I’m trying to prepare my children for the future, for the 21st century. I’m trying to prepare them as best I can for the world as I see it.” Rogers believes the future is Asia—he was recently on cable television flogging Chinese commodities. “The money is in the East, and the debtors are in the West. I’d rather be with the creditors than the debtors,” he adds.
It has become a convention of public discourse to regard rapid globalization—of economies and business; of politics and conflict; of fashion, technology, and music—as the great future threat to American prosperity. The burden of meeting that challenge rests explicitly on our kids. If they don’t learn—now—to achieve a comfort level with foreign people, foreign languages, and foreign lands, this argument goes, America’s competitive position in the world will continue to erode, and their future livelihood and that of subsequent generations will be in jeopardy. Rogers is hardly the only person who sees things this way. “In this global economy, the line between domestic and international issues is increasingly blurred, with the world’s economies, societies, and people interconnected as never before,” said U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan in remarks in the spring of 2010 at the Asia Society in New York. “I am worried that in this interconnected world, our country risks being disconnected from the contributions of other countries and cultures.”

Read more here...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Confessions of a Serial Killer: Jeffrey Dahmer

Very chilling interview, but fascinating at the same time...

Watch Full Documentary here...

A Victim Almost Escapes

Konerak was only fourteen and he was running for his life. This was his only chance to escape from the horrible-smelling apartment where the creepy blond guy had slipped him some kind of powerful drug. It seemed that luck was with him that he started to come around just as the blond man had left the apartment.
It took all the strength he had to get up and get to the door. He was so disoriented and panicked that it made no difference that he was naked. This was his only chance to survive. He was working strictly on instinct. Just get out of there and run away.

It was just before 2 A.M. and Sandra Smith called 911 to report the boy running around "butt naked." She didn't know who he was, but she knew he was injured and terrified.
The paramedics got there first and put a blanket around the naked, dazed boy. Two police officers arrived soon after and tried to understand what was going on with this young man of Asian descent.
Sandra Smith, 18, and her cousin Nicole Childress, also 18, were standing near the boy when the Milwaukee city police arrived. The tall blond man was also standing near the boy. The conversation became heated between the girls, the blond man and the police.

The tall blond man told the police the Konerak was his 19-year-old lover who had been drinking too much. Konerak, who was drugged and incoherent, wasn't able to contradict the smooth-talking blond man. Dahmer gave the police a picture ID.

The two young women tried to intervene. They had seen the terrified boy trying to resist the blond man before the police arrived. They were angry and upset. The police were ignoring them and listening to the white man instead.

Just to be on the safe side, the two officers went with the boy and the tall blond man to his apartment. The apartment smelled bad, but it was very neat. Konerak's clothing was folded and placed on the sofa. There were a couple of photographs of Konerak in black bikini briefs.

Konerak sat quietly on the sofa unable to talk intelligently. It's not even clear that he understood the calm explanation the blond man was giving the police. The blond man was apologizing that his lover had caused a disturbance and promised it wouldn't happen again.
The police believed the blond man. They had no reason not to — he was well-spoken, intelligent and very calm. The Asian was apparently drunk and incoherent. The officers, not wanting to get in the middle of a domestic argument between homosexual lovers, left the apartment with Konerak still sitting quietly on the sofa.

Read more here...

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The Price of 9/11

As the mainstream media keeps drumming the "official" 9/11 story into the minds of viewers, it's good to see that some news outlets like Truthout are talking about the true cost of 9/11...

New York – The September 11, 2001, terror attacks by Al Qaeda were meant to harm the United States, and they did, but in ways that Osama bin Laden probably never imagined. President George W. Bush’s response to the attacks compromised America’s basic principles, undermined its economy, and weakened its security.
The attack on Afghanistan that followed the 9/11 attacks was understandable, but the subsequent invasion of Iraq was entirely unconnected to Al Qaeda – as much as Bush tried to establish a link. That war of choice quickly became very expensive – orders of magnitude beyond the $60 billion claimed at the beginning – as colossal incompetence met dishonest misrepresentation.
Indeed, when Linda Bilmes and I calculated America’s war costs three years ago, the conservative tally was $3-5 trillion. Since then, the costs have mounted further. With almost 50% of returning troops eligible to receive some level of disability payment, and more than 600,000 treated so far in veterans’ medical facilities, we now estimate that future disability payments and health-care costs will total $600-900 billion. But the social costs, reflected in veteran suicides (which have topped 18 per day in recent years) and family breakups, are incalculable.

Read more here:


 The Years of Shame by Paul Krugman
Is it just me, or are the 9/11 commemorations oddly subdued?
Actually, I don’t think it’s me, and it’s not really that odd.
What happened after 9/11 — and I think even people on the right know this, whether they admit it or not — was deeply shameful. The atrocity should have been a unifying event, but instead it became a wedge issue. Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons.
A lot of other people behaved badly. How many of our professional pundits — people who should have understood very well what was happening — took the easy way out, turning a blind eye to the corruption and lending their support to the hijacking of the atrocity?
The memory of 9/11 has been irrevocably poisoned; it has become an occasion for shame. And in its heart, the nation knows it.

Missing Iraq Cash as High as 18 billion

Strange Rain

Photographer  Julien Coquentin uses an odd technique of letting small drops of rain fall onto the lens of his camera.  By doing so, he greatly enhances impression of rain in his photographs.  Very nice work...


Once again, the sky saturates us with its deluge, accompanied by the loud burst of thunder we’ve grown accustomed to. How long has it been raining on this city? Mute and indifferent to what has become familiar, we are only sure that the storms have transformed us and our city.
It is a strange sensation – living in a gorge, an atmosphere that is chronic with humidity as we find ourselves with the sons of the months, embracing the brute infernal noise.

Our consciousness compelled us to lie down come nightfall. Wrapped in cloth, we become saturated by the grounds unceasing stream of humidity, surrounded by walls of scaling paint—an atrocity; this climate. We all seek release from this fate, as assimilation into the grey void –
paled our smiles—--now a blur… evanescent.

Self-preservation…means accepting ones fate. We knew that. Kinship of shared experiences found us drawn to each other…creating units of our making.
Yet...forced into communities driven by the dying light equated –not genuine fraternity—but mocked relationships with all the defects of hypocrisy.

This morning –the church found the entire city in attendance for the sermon.
So as to conceal the sound of the thunder—an investment had been made to install a large sound system—affording all to hear.

Suddenly, the sound of the rain ceased—leaving the acoustics of the auditorium amplifying the voice of the priest, which filled the church. Bewildered chatter halted to a whisper.

A ray of sun light had caused the audience to divert their attention—and one by one they streamed out of this forced shelter.
bedazzled by the magnificence of this light, our astonishment intensified…

It was this day I knew what silence meant. To be present and yet so far removed.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sicarios: Latin American Assassins

A hooded sicario threatens Javier for a few seconds in zone 14 of Guatemala City.

Some of the best documentary photography I've seen in awhile, and after living in Chihuahua, North Mexico, I can definitely appreciate how difficult and dangerous it would have been to get these photographs.  His other essays are also truly exceptional...graphic, yet honest-the way documentary photography is supposed to be.  

One of the most popular and respected professions in Latin America is that of the sicarios: the hit man or assassin. Prices are variable for killing someone and can range from as little as $20 up to tens of thousands. In Guatemala, Salvador and Mexico many young people, including minors, are seduced by the lure of easy money and the respect and fear that comes with the job.

See photo essay here:

See more of "Sicarios" and Javier Arcenillas' other amazing photo essays here...

and here...

Monday, September 5, 2011

Somalia's Famine Death Toll Projected To Reach 750,000

(CNN) -- A record 4 million people in Somalia need humanitarian aid and 750,000 people are in danger of "imminent starvation," the United Nations said on Monday.
Famine in the African nation has spread to the Bay region, which is now the sixth area in Somalia suffering from an acute shortage of food, according to the the U.N.'s Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit (FSNAU) and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network.
Officials are calling for a surge in response efforts as the crisis is predicted to get worse.
"With the current food security outcomes famine conditions are expected to spread to agro pastoral populations in Gedo, Hiran, Middle Shabelle and Juba regions and riverine populations of Juba and Gedo in the coming 4 months," Grainne Moloney, FSNAU's chief technical advisor, said in a statement announcing the latest survey results.

Of the 4 million people in need of emergency aid, 3 million are in the south. That figure is up from 2.4 million eight months ago.
Tens of thousands of people have already died, more than half of whom are children, according to the FSNAU, which is managed by the U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
The famine is being stoked by Somalia's worst drought in 60 years. Somalia has not had a stable government since 1991, and fighting between the rebels and government troops has escalated the humanitarian crisis in the famine-ravaged country.

"Though these figures paint a bleak picture as the worst agricultural crisis for Somalia in recent times ... there is a window of opportunity for the humanitarian community to stop and reverse this dramatic trend by supporting farmers and herders in addition to other emergency interventions," said Luca Alinovi, FAO's officer in charge for Somalia.

(Click on map to enlarge)


Previous Major African Hunger Crises

  • Niger: 2010 - Food shortages affect more than 7 million people after crops fail; 2005 - thousands die following drought and locust invasion
  • Ethiopia, 2000: Three consecutive years of drought leave millions at risk, with famine declared in Gode, the Somali region
  • Somalia, 1991-1992: Drought and war contribute to famine across the country; the US Refugee Policy Group estimates at least 200,000 famine-related deaths in 1992
  • Ethiopia, 1984-1985: Up to one million people die in famine caused by conflict, drought and economic mismanagement
  • Biafra, 1967-1970: One million die in civil war and famine during conflict over Nigeria's breakaway Biafran republic
Source: BBC

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