“As democracy is perfected, the office of President represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
- H.L. Mencken (1880 – 1956)
Speculative traders in Chicago last week racked up the highest number of long-euro, short-dollar contracts on record. Options traders have reported brisk business in euro calls – contracts to buy the euro at a pre-determined rate.
However, the market has been rife with rumours that the latest wave of selling has been led by foreign governments seeking to cut their exposure to US assets.
India and Russia have reportedly been selling US assets, as well as petrodollar-rich Middle Eastern investors.
China, which has $515bn of reserves, was also said to be selling dollars and buying Asian currencies in readiness to switch the renminbi’s dollar peg to a basket arrangement, something Chinese officials have increasingly hinted at. Any re-allocation could push the dollar sharply lower and Treasury yields markedly higher.
Marines rested before their next assignment.
An American marine sniper searching for enemy counterparts.
Insurgents sometimes contested every inch of the advance and sometimes melted away.
Marines arrested Iraqis today at the railroad station.
Cuteness is a big attraction of Neopets, which helps explain its popularity among girls, who typically are not as drawn to video games as boys. Started by college students in 1999, the site has continued to gain popularity by rolling out merchandise and cross-promotions with big name firms such as McDonald’s. But the Web site’s brand of “immersive advertising,” in which corporations sponsor games with advertising messages embedded inside, has some child advocates and parents fuming. Neopets is part of a mushrooming – and controversial – industry in which corporations spend an estimated $15 billion a year advertising to children. In May, the company cross-promoted its brand with McDonald’s, which offered a Neopet plush toy and trading card in its Happy Meal. The private company currently posts sales in the “ballpark” of $15 million a year, derived equally from its merchandise, licensing fees and advertising on the site, said Kinney. Kinney gleefully touted the firm’s “immersive advertising,” in which household names such as McDonald’s, Disney and General Mills sponsor “advergames” that are played for points. The ads are embedded into games on the site, often with links to advertisers’ Web sites. Players also can earn points by answering 30 different marketing surveys on the site conducted on behalf of corporations. Some parents and child advocates say that kind of advertising is manipulative and blurs the lines between marketing and entertainment…
De Britse politie roept kopers van een tweedehands auto op met hun mobieltje de verkoper te fotograferen. Mocht er iets misgaan met de deal van het voertuig, dan kan de verkoper makkelijker worden opgespoord.
Volgens de politie van West Midlands maakt de overvloed aan mobieltjes en digitale camera’s het makkelijk om het advies op te volgen. Bonafide verkopers zouden er geen moeite mee moeten hebben dat ze worden gefotografeerd, aldus een woordvoerder maandag tegen de Britse omroep BBC.
De politie werd geïnspireerd door een vrouw die de man fotografeerde die haar voor 7000 pond een gestolen auto had verkocht.
According to an internal study done by one of the majors, between two-thirds and three-quarters of the drop in sales in America had nothing to do with internet piracy. No-one knows how much weight to assign to each of the other explanations: rising physical CD piracy, shrinking retail space, competition from other media, and the quality of the music itself.
Novell today announced an agreement with Microsoft to settle potential antitrust litigation related to Novell’s NetWare operating system in exchange for $536 million in cash. Novell also announced that by the end of this week it will file an antitrust suit against Microsoft in the United States District Court in Utah seeking unspecified damages in connection with alleged harm to Novell’s WordPerfect application software business in the mid-1990s.
A State Board of Education member called on textbook publishers to change the wording in health books being considered for use in Texas schools to clearly state that marriage is between a man and a woman.
Republican Terri Leo said certain books attempt to nullify a Texas law banning the recognition of same-sex civil unions by using “asexual stealth phrases” such as “individuals who marry” instead of husbands and wives.
“I want the reader, the child to know that marriage is between a man and a woman,” Leo said in a written statement released during a board meeting Thursday.
The US military, with many soldiers coming from the conservative American south and midwest, has deep Christian roots.
In times that fighting looms, many soldiers draw on their evangelical or born-again heritage to help them face the battle.
“It’s always comforting. Church attendance is always up before the big push,” said first sergeant Miles Thatford.
“Sometimes, all you’ve got is God.”
Between the service’s electric guitar religious tunes, marines stepped up on the chapel’s small stage and recited a verse of scripture, meant to fortify them for war.
One spoke of their Old Testament hero, a shepherd who would become Israel’s king, battling the Philistines 3 000 years ago.
“Thus David prevailed over the Philistines,” the marine said, reading from scripture, and the marines shouted back “Hoorah, King David,” using their signature grunt of approval.
The marines drew parallels from the verse with their present situation, where they perceive themselves as warriors fighting barbaric men opposed to all that is good in the world.
“Victory belongs to the Lord,” another young marine read.
Their chaplain, named Horne, told the worshippers they were stationed outside Fallujah to bring the Iraqis “freedom from oppression, rape, torture and murder … We ask you God to bless us in that effort.”
The marines then lined up and their chaplain blessed them with holy oil to protect them.
“God’s people would be anointed with oil,” the chaplain said, as he lightly dabbed oil on the marines’ foreheads.
The crowd then followed him outside their small auditorium for a baptism of about a half-dozen marines who had just found Christ.
The young men lined up and at least three of them stripped down to their shorts.
The three laid down in a rubber dinghy filled with water and the chaplain’s assistant, navy corpsman Richard Vaughn, plunged their heads beneath the surface.
Smiling, Vaughn baptised them “in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
Dripping wet, corporal Keith Arguelles beamed after his baptism.
“I just wanted to make sure I did this before I headed into the fight,” he said on the military base not far from the city of Fallujah.
A boy recovers in a Fallujah hospital after a U.S. airstrike in Fallujah, Iraq (news – web sites) Saturday, Nov. 6, 2004, which killed his father, according to hospital officials. U.S. jets pounded Fallujah early Saturday in the heaviest airstrikes in six months, including five 500-pound bombs dropped on insurgent targets.(AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)
For the fourth year in a row, a small experimental flock of whooping cranes is in the skies of Indiana after leaving Boone County at dawn, Sunday, Nov. 7, 2004, on the longest ultralight aircraft-led migration with an endangered species in history. The flock left Necedah National Wildlife Refuge in Wisconsin October 10 led by three ultralights on a journey of nearly 1,200 miles through seven states enroute to Chassahowitzka National Wildlife Refuge in Florida. Here pilot Joe Duff escorts 12 of the 15 juvenile birds to their next stopover in central Indiana. (AP Photo/Dave Umberger)
Lingerie maker Triumph’s model Yu Misaki shows off the Eco-globe Bra, which has cups that join together to form a palm-sized green globe, in Tokyo November 9, 2004. The brassiere, licensed for the Expo 2005 Aichi Japan and not for general sale, uses environmentally-friendly materials such as corn, Deccan hemp and paper which can all be recycled. REUTERS/Eriko Sugita
A religious cult of German immigrants has broken decades of isolation from a world shocked by sex-abuse scandals in the group, the flight of its secretive leader and reports it once helped Chile’s military government torture political prisoners.
In exclusive interviews, members of the 280-person sect ended decades of public silence to tell Reuters they had emerged from a long nightmare to the painful realization their God-like guru — a fugitive facing child-sex charges — had broken apart their families and fostered physical abuse.
The sect came here in the 1960s following Paul Schaefer, a charismatic World War II German army nurse, who cult members thought was God on earth and who preached an unnamed religion that said harsh discipline would draw them closer to the supreme being.
“Everyone saw him as a celestial being and no one dared doubt him. People were blind here. It was a huge shock to discover the truth,” said Michael Mueller, a 47-year-old member of the community’s newly elected reform committee.
A rosary hangs off the barrel of a machinegun mounted on a Bradley belonging to the 1st Cavalry Regiment 5th Battalion positioned on the outskirts of Fallujah. (AFP/Patrick Baz)
A Bosnian worker carries away a plastic bag with body remains exhumed from a mass grave found near the eastern-Bosnian town of Zvornik, in the village of Snagovo, Bosnia, on Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2004. Forensics experts said Monday they found 78 bodies of victims of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre in a mass grave they believe contains even more remains. Experts exhumed 43 complete and 35 incomplete bodies from the mass grave. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)
A Serb commission’s final report on the 1995 Srebrenica massacre acknowledges that the mass murder of 7,800 Muslim men and boys by Bosnian Serb forces was planned, an international official said Monday.
The report on the worst massacre of civilians in Europe since World War II was presented to the Bosnian Serb government last month but has not yet been made public.
“The report itself admits and provides details of the plan and deliberate liquidation of thousands of Bosniaks (Muslims) by the Bosnian Serb forces,” Bernard Fassier, the deputy to Bosnia’s top international administrator, Paddy Ashdown, told reporters.