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DireWolfSpirit

International Events 5, "As the World Turns"

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1 hour ago, Lightning Lord said:

China is the "one" in my "one did not."

I didn't realize that China was not recognizing non-Chinese vaccines. Any idea if that policy is permanent? Hard to imagine international travel to China recovering while they deny all other vaccinations.

I don't think they care. Covid has been controlled here for a while do to lockdowns and the vaccination rate here is not so good, but getting better. China has exported a lot of their vaccines and so it's very far from approaching herd immunity here. I think limiting international travel is part of the goal. As for only recognizing the Chinese vaccine, as with any policy here it will be ironclad and unchangeable until it isn't. I'm sure eventually it will change but when? who knows. I am surprised China is on your list as most  foreign teachers I know here have been offered the vaccine through their jobs. 

1 hour ago, kiko said:

I'm pretty sure that's intentionally. Even my wife, who's from Beijing basically can't go to China right now because it would waste too much time to be allowed in. They are even harder on foreign nationals at the same time they are starting to blame foreignerers, foreign companies etc for basically everything including spreading covid. They are building a narrative now.

It was a lot worse last summer in terms of blaming foreigners people would scoot away from you on the bus and jump to the other  side of the sidewalk. There was a good month scare of foreigners bringing in the virus from Russia. That's died down now, but people still ask me all the time when the las time I went back home. The quarantine right now is a month. Two weeks at a hotel, two weeks at home. I could theoretically go back to America for the summer since I have the Chinese vaccine and was planning on it, but with these new doubled quarantines I don't think I will.

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O how tRumpy desired to do the same thing!  He sure worked hard to get it happening.

 

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Posted (edited)
34 minutes ago, Zorral said:

O how tRumpy desired to do the same thing!  He sure worked hard to get it happening.

 

Ha. It’s funny because you said President Trump actually worked hard. 
 

That’s hilarious. 

Edited by A True Kaniggit

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1 hour ago, A True Kaniggit said:

Ha. It’s funny because you said President Trump actually worked hard. 
 

That’s hilarious. 

You're Right! So Right! :cheers: Ha!

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13 hours ago, DireWolfSpirit said:

Ortega has disgraced himself and left no room for doubt that he is full on Dictator, no shades of grey here.

https://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/us_60c66bd3e4b0402a2c034569

What I don’t understand is why, if Ortega was a full on dictator in the 80’s or now, he left office voluntarily, for decades, when he lost the Nicaraguan election?

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1 hour ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

What I don’t understand is why, if Ortega was a full on dictator in the 80’s or now, he left office voluntarily, for decades, when he lost the Nicaraguan election?

Because he lost control of large parts of his own party. He’s since reinvented himself as a Catholic, social conservative, amassing huge riches, control over the press and military, and has won over many of the Contra rebels. In short, he stepped down then because he would have lost, this time, he’d win.

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48 minutes ago, Hereward said:

Because he lost control of large parts of his own party. He’s since reinvented himself as a Catholic, social conservative, amassing huge riches, control over the press and military, and has won over many of the Contra rebels. In short, he stepped down then because he would have lost, this time, he’d win.

What a lovely human being.  :(  
 

A competent leftist Trump?

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2 hours ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

What I don’t understand is why, if Ortega was a full on dictator in the 80’s or now, he left office voluntarily, for decades, when he lost the Nicaraguan election?

Lord Varys : Power is a curious thing, my lord. Are you fond of riddles?

Tyrion Lannister : Why? Am I about to hear one?

Lord Varys : Three great men sit in a room: a king, a priest, and a rich man. Between them stands a common sellsword. Each great man bids the sellsword kill the other two. Who lives, who dies?

Tyrion Lannister : Depends on the sellsword.

Lord Varys : Does it? He has neither crown, nor gold, nor favor with the gods.

Tyrion Lannister : He has a sword, the power of life and death.

Lord Varys : But if it's swordsmen who rule, why do we pretend kings hold all the power? When Ned Stark lost his head, who was truly responsible? Joffrey? The executioner? Or something else?

Tyrion Lannister : I've decided I don't like riddles.

[pause] 

Lord Varys : Power resides where men believe it resides. It's a trick. A shadow on the wall. And a very small man can cast a very large shadow.

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Hanky Panky, an Dutch tattoo artist we've known since ages ago,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henk_Schiffmacher#:~:text=Hendrikus Johannes Everhardus "Henk" Schiffmacher,television shows on the subject.

was knighted for his service to Dutch tattoo art.  He's now Sir Panky.

How do we know this?  Because the bass player for Dylan's touring band has been friend even longer, introduced us. TG is also a member of the Amsterdam chapter of the Hells Angels/  Oor he was then; I've never asked if he let that membership lapse.  Asked what Hells Angels in Amsterdam were like, TG said, "Continental. They are very continental."

I couldn't find anything online about this except on FB, and I don't do FB, but here's one link:

https://m.facebook.com/1721035681543524/photos/a.1721039941543098/1771080639872361/?type=3

 

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"Macron's party loses big in France's regional elections"

https://www.axios.com/macron-party-loses-regional-elections-186cd0a9-979a-4ffe-a051-0c3082b2d8b3.html

Links inside, well, duh, material in the link!

Quote

 

French President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist party, La République en Marche, garnered only 10.9 % of the vote in Sunday's regional elections, which saw bigger wins for mainstream left-and-right wing parties, according to an exit poll by Elabe.

Why it matters: Sunday's regional elections are seen as a barometer for next year's national elections, which are only 10 months away, Politico reports.

The good news for Macron is that Marine Le Pen's far-right Rassemblement National (National Rally) also performed worse than expected on Sunday, per The Guardian.

The state of play: About 34% of the vote went to left-wing parties and about 29% went to right-wing parties, while the National Rally walked away with 19% of the vote, reports Politico.

Turnout was also low, with "68% of voters shunn[ing] the polling stations — an unprecedented rate of abstention," notes The Guardian.

Aurore Bergé, a member of Parliament for Macron's LREM, told local news that the results were a "slap in the face," per The Guardian.

 

 

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36 minutes ago, The_Lone_Wolf said:

Pakistan pm Imran Khan's comments on women's attire attracting sexual crimes from men and his cultural high and mightyness, burkha remarks, traditional and moral policing didn't shock me as much as my mother did. She vehemently agreed with him. News should be non judgemental. That didn't help. Being a woman and yet agreeing with this shouldn't have shocked me since her conservative attitude crosses jingoist feelings like most middle class belonging to a majority in a country like India. Nobody cares if a man wears ripped denim shorts in summer in a tropical country. Practical for the heat and doesn't do bad for the looks. But now I've lost hope for humanity's salvation redemption whatever. Let us freeze and burn. Frost. What a society, instead of claiming responsibility for bad parenting, taboo festering, toxic masculinity patriarchy and chauvinistic misogyny, lack of sex Ed, alienation and separation of the sexes from puberty, porn exposure, (literally fcked up sicko territory) and repressed desires bring the worst out of man. All in the name of cultures and moral values and traditional sensibilities. Religion, caste, honour, my foot. Nobody was born like that. They are products of so called civilization. And yet we term those who commit vile acts as beasts and monsters. No other of the billions of coexisting (not inharmony) species have singlely committed the evils of Homo Sapiens. 

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2 hours ago, Zorral said:

"Macron's party loses big in France's regional elections"

https://www.axios.com/macron-party-loses-regional-elections-186cd0a9-979a-4ffe-a051-0c3082b2d8b3.html

Links inside, well, duh, material in the link!

Predictable, although the enormous abtention rate makes it difficult to draw any solid conclusions at this point.

Macron's clearly in great danger though, that much is confirmed. His young party's main strength always was the perception that he was the best guy to prevent the far-right from winning (it doesn't really have local party structures yet). Now it looks like there are several persons who could absolutely do better. Or at least, the media is suddenly giving a lot of attention to one of the winners of the regional elections on the traditional right (Xavier Betrand). Given that they're basically going after the same voters - as Macron won't attract any wayward left-wing voters this time-, that's a devastating blow for the president's re-election bid. Not just the fact that he lost, but the possibility of him not being the media's darling candidate.
A curious narrative in the media is that Macron sent five ministers as candidates in Bertrand's region because he feared him, But it also downplays the importance of the other right-wing figure, Valérie Pécresse (president of the Parisian region). Both Bertrand and Pécresse would do better against Le Pen than Macron, according to a recent poll. Methinks Macron wants to avoid another female candidate on his right (not that it's that likely anyway - it's the right :P).
I wouldn't trust any of those numbers (neither the polls, nor the local results), but perceptions are essential in politics here, and on numbers alone, there is now a clear scenario for the appearance of a credible center-left candidate. Well, it now seems that any alliance on the left could produce a solid contender, but Mélenchon having announced his bid early (the stubborn old fart) means it's probably a center-left alliance or none. And anyway, the Socialists and the Greens both suddenly appear to be doing better than Macron's party now. These -possibly- inflated scores are another -unexpected- piece of bad news for Macron: this is going to give people ideas, and thus makes an alliance more likely. Mélenchon could be dismissed as "far-left" but another candidate talking about climate change would highlight another weakness of Macron's (doing so little against it).

TL;DR: It's hard not to conclude that voters are not interested in another Macron-Le Pen duel.

There's one thing I dare not hope: the splitting of the far-right vote. The most influential far-right TV figure (think Tucker Carlson with a goblin face) is said to be considering a bid as well. So there's also a world in which neither Macron nor Le Pen reach the second round of the presidential election.

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This was talked of at Saturday's gathering of one of our 'tribes', by one of the guests who is a British-American, i.e. emigrated to the US from Cornwall in her college days and became a US citizen):

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/06/22/cornwall-coronavirus-cases-surge-g-7-summit/

Quote

 

Coronavirus cases are rising in Cornwall — but Downing Street says the Group of Seven summit held in the British town earlier this month is not to blame.

The seven-day case rate in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has soared from 4.9 per 100,000 people in early June to 130.6 per 100,000 people on June 16, the Guardian reported. Rates of infections are particularly high in Carbis Bay, where the summit was held, and several nearby areas where delegates to the gathering of world leaders stayed.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesperson on Monday denied any direct causation between the G-7 summit — with its influx of journalists, police officers and support staff — and the rise in coronavirus infection rates.

“We are confident that there were no cases of transmission to the local residents,” the unidentified spokesperson told the Guardian. “All attendees were tested, everyone involved in the G-7 work were also tested during their work on the summit.”....

 

 

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18 hours ago, Rippounet said:

So there's also a world in which neither Macron nor Le Pen reach the second round of the presidential election.

I'm not well versed in French Politics at all, but isn't Xavier Bertrand also very conservative, trying to claim the space on the right between Macron's incompetent center-rightism and Le-Pen's neo-fascism?  Thus any election featuring Bertrand vs either Macron or Le Pen would be prettymuch just as bad as a rematch? 

And I definitely worry about the chances of a leftist candidate vs Bertrand (although a lot is still up in the air and at least in that case there would be hope).

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1 hour ago, Maithanet said:

I'm not well versed in French Politics at all, but isn't Xavier Bertrand also very conservative, trying to claim the space on the right between Macron's incompetent center-rightism and Le-Pen's neo-fascism?

Oh, yes, the French traditional right is terrible. What they're best at is corruption and collecting scandals.

It's hardly a secret that France has one of the worst political classes and a pretty bad corruption rate for an OECD country. IIRC every single conservative president back to and including Giscard d'Estaing in the 1970s (with the diamonds scandal) has been involved in a major scandal. Sarkozy was involved in about a dozen "affaires" and some of the legal outcomes make the news every now and then (the latest about overshooting his campaign budget by 20 million€). Chirac famously had hidden bank accounts abroad (Japan IIRC) with millions he'd bamboozled.
I have no idea why people keep voting for these crooks. They're not even that good at stealing tbh, but their shamelessness somehow manages to appeal to millions of people. Fillion was charged with embezzlement in the middle of the presidential campaign and was still a mere few points behind Macron and in front of Mélenchon.
These guys are the source of abstention and its main beneficiaries at the same time. They survive on the votes of the elderly and the  traditionally-minded people (most of them wealthy) and that's somehow enough. Most people are convinced nothing can come out of politics, that they're all rotten to the core. And that anger also fuels the far-right.
Yet it wasn't that long ago that we had a solid left with actually progressive policies (like the 35-hour work week). And to be fair, it's still pretty decent with Hamon pushing for UBI and Mélenchon having a program to transition that's very sound economically.

Quote

 

Thus any election featuring Bertrand vs either Macron or Le Pen would be pretty much just as bad as a rematch? 

And I definitely worry about the chances of a leftist candidate vs Bertrand (although a lot is still up in the air and at least in that case there would be hope).

 

The right seems undefeatable right now. The left still hasn't recovered from Hollande and Macron destroying the Socialist Party, which had been the major left-wing force since forever. But alliances do have potential, if not to win, at least to get votes, which can also translate to seats in the legislature.

 

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9 minutes ago, Rippounet said:

The right seems undefeatable right now. The left still hasn't recovered from Hollande and Macron destroying the Socialist Party, which had been the major left-wing force since forever. But alliances do have potential, if not to win, at least to get votes, which can also translate to seats in the legislature.

That is indeed unfortunate.  As a know-nothing American, I actually wonder if Bertrand might actually be harder to defeat in a runoff than either Le Pen (still too fashy) or Macron (obviously failing).  But the left needs to come together in order to have any chance of even making the top 2. 

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