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Thu, 20 Feb 2020
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Shopping Bag

Cry a river for penny-pinching firms moaning that Brits will get jobs now that Brexit has locked door for unskilled EU workers

looking for staff bags
As the UK government unveils its points-based system, putting an end to open door EU immigration for good, British firms who overdosed on unskilled, cheap labour now need to face up to a new reality, and they are not happy.

With the bold announcement of details about a points-based system for migrants wishing to come to live and work in the UK, Home Secretary Priti Patel may have caused some uproar, but this was a festering wound of an issue that needed to be cauterised.

While the liberals are claiming that the UK has pulled the drawbridge up on migration, the more accurate view is that the sun has set on the day of low-skilled, non-English speaking immigration — for now.

Well, partly. Because while those attempting to come to Britain legally face a far higher barrier to entry than previously, there will still be lorries packed with Vietnamese migrants sneaking through East Anglian ports, students overstaying their study visas and extended families exploiting lax reunion laws that need to be addressed.

Biohazard

Make no mistake: Burger King's vaunted 'real food' burger without additives will still KILL YOU

burger king
© YouTube / BURGER KING 27
Burger King is the latest fast food brand trying to distract from its role in growing our waistlines, by virtue-signaling about what's not in its food. But all the misdirection in the world can't spare it a nutritional reckoning.

The chain unveiled an ad earlier this week, showing time-lapse footage of a Whopper growing moldy over a month to tout the removal of artificial preservatives from its signature item.

With health-conscious consumers shying away from the unchecked gluttony Burger King and its ilk once celebrated - remember the Carl's Jr. "thickburger," the cheeseburger that somehow included a hot dog and potato chips in the burger, and KFC's "DoubleDown," the bacon and cheese sandwich in which fried chicken is used instead of bacon? - fast-food chains are having an existential crisis.

Bullseye

Workplaces are imperfect, but they don't need Orwellian 'thought police' tech to enforce inclusivity

people arguing
© Getty Images / ImagesbyTrista
In an effort to quash any 'implicit biases' that may be lurking inside of the Western workplace, researchers are busy as beavers creating smart devices to 'ensure equality' across the board. What could possibly go wrong?

Despite numerous warnings from the world of science fiction about the dangers of a dystopian future, researchers are committed to introducing technologies that seem destined to enslave humanity like never before. And these new state-of-the-art devices do not require rusty iron shackles, but rather the invisible chains of political correctness.

That much seemed clear from the announcement of a $1.5 million project where a research team from Northeastern University will spend the next three years building a machine that aims to ensure the "equal inclusion of all team members" in any organization. The project is funded by a grant from the US Army Research Laboratory.

I repeat, what could possibly go wrong?

Binoculars

Prince Andrew told 'reveal what you know' as he faces fresh demand to 'tell FBI everything' about Epstein

Prince Andrew
© Geoff Robinson/REX/Shutterstock
Prince Andrew on 19 January 2020.
Prince Andrew faces a fresh demand to tell the FBI "everything" about paedo pal Jeffrey Epstein, according to reports.

The embattled Duke of York has been told "step up...reveal what you know" after it emerged he visited a second tycoon facing child sex charges.

Andrew reportedly stayed in Peter Nygard's mansion in the Bahamas with ex-wife Sarah Ferguson in 2000.

The billionaire tycoon, 77, is accused of raping 10 teens but strongly denies the allegations and there is no suggestion Andrew knew of his alleged criminality.

But in the wake of the new claims, Lisa Bloom - the lawyer for Epstein's victims - has urged Andrew to speak to the FBI, the Mirror reports.

She said: "Now, more than ever, it is essential that you co-operate. Victims are crying out for justice. Hear their voices."

Comment: See also:


Chess

Court rejects Huawei's lawsuit over federal defense spending law

huawei
© Mark Schiefelbein, File/AP Photo
A federal judge ruled today that Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei does not have grounds to sue the U.S. government over a law restricting its ability to do business with federal agencies and their contractors.

District Judge Amos Mazzant determined that Congress acted within its powers when it passed the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, including a provision that precludes agencies and contractors from buying certain equipment from Huawei and fellow Chinese networking giant ZTE.

Huawei argued the law was unnecessarily punitive and singled out individual companies in violation of their constitutional rights in a lawsuit filed last year. Lawmakers have asserted that Huawei could use its networks to spy on behalf of the Chinese government — a claim that the company has aggressively denied.

Red Flag

Ukraine bans Zelenskiy film over inclusion of Russian co-star

Yekaterina Varnava

Russian actress Yekaterina Varnava was banned from entering Ukraine for five years after she'd taken part in a comedy show in Crimea
Ukraine's Cinema Agency has banned a 2012 film featuring the country's current president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, because the film includes a Russian actress blacklisted by Kyiv for making an unauthorized visit to Ukraine's Russian-occupied region of Crimea.

The Kyiv-based agency says the Russian-Ukrainian comedy Eight New Dates cannot be screened at public theaters in Ukraine due to "national security concerns" because it includes the Russian actress Yekaterina Varnava.

Varnava was banned by Ukraine's Security Service (SBU) in 2017 from entering Ukraine for five years after she'd taken part in a 2016 comedy show in Crimea without permission from Ukrainian authorities to visit the Russian-occupied region.

Megaphone

Hamas is quick to call for rallies, but not to support those who suffer losses - Protester

hamas militants
© AP Photo / Adel Hana
Even though Hamas is the one organising protests along the Israel-Gaza border, they don't take responsibility for the deaths and injuries such rallies cause, says a Palestinian protester, who was wounded in one of the clashes. Although he does get money from Ramallah, the amount is simply not enough to keep him afloat.

Demonstrations along the Israel-Gaza border that have drawn thousands of Palestinians to the fence and have seen more than 200 Palestinians killed over the course of two years, will resume in March, said a statement by the High Commission for the March of Return and Breaking the Siege.

The so-called March of Return protests that erupted in March 2018 following Washington's decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel stopped following mediation efforts by the Egyptian government. Now, however, they promise to come back with a new vigour.

Arrow Down

'More interested in pipelines than indigenous people': Trudeau faces activists' wrath over yet ANOTHER contentious energy project

Justin Trudeau
© Reuters / Blair Gable
With Canada paralyzed by anti-pipeline blockades that shut railways and crippled traffic, Justin Trudeau canceled a Caribbean trip to manage the crisis — but indigenous people opposing the project have little reason to trust him.

When he was first elected five years ago, Trudeau convinced liberal voters that he was an environmentalist and that concern for the natural environment would be a cornerstone of his administration. He gave heartfelt speeches on climate change and cutting carbon emissions. He pledged to phase out federal fossil fuel subsidies. He promised to end the "inaction" of the previous government on environmental protection and leave younger generations with an "even more beautiful, sustainable, and prosperous" country than exists now. He also committed to reconciliation with First Nations people.

Since then, his government declared a "climate emergency" — and he has even marched alongside teen climate activist Greta Thunberg. Yet, Trudeau has also approved new oil and gas pipelines, all but abandoned the promise to end fossil fuel subsidies, ignored indigenous fears over the destruction of their native lands and essentially sold out to corporate interests over environmental protection.

The recent anti-pipeline blockades and demonstrations have sprung up in support of Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs who are fighting against the construction of the 670-kilometre Coastal GasLink — a liquefied natural gas (LNG) pipeline in British Columbia that would cross-cut First Nations territory.

Comment: See also: Canadian energy giant 'funding' Oregon sheriff's unit to thwart protests against one of its own pipeline projects - report


Handcuffs

Russian police raid banned radical Islamist group Tablighi Jamaat's 'training camp', arrest leaders & participants

Russia arrests extremists Islamist Tablighi Jamaat
Seven members of a hardline Islamic organization were arrested in Moscow on Wednesday, according to the Federal Security Service (FSB). They are charged with disseminating extremist propaganda and trying to recruit new supporters.

Tablighi Jamaat, which means the Outreach Society or the Society for Spreading Faith, is banned in Russia. Its philosophy is based around the idea that Muslims should revert to practicing their faith as it was done in the 7th century, when the Prophet Mohammed himself lived. It particularly focuses on styles of dress, personal behavior, and forms of ritual.

"Three leaders and four active members of a conspiratorial cell who were conducting a training camp for members of the organization were detained," the FSB said in a statement. It further accused them of "undermining the foundations of Islam," while confirming the detained were natives of Central Asia.

Comment: Unlike many Western countries, Russia is serious about halting the spread of extremist ideology.


Black Magic

Russian police raid cult that made millions selling 'divine protection spells'

Order of the Path cult
© Getty Images / Fairfax Media / CRAIG SILLITOE
St. Petersburg police searched the apartment-turned-"temple" and stables of "Order of the Path," a family-run cult that claimed to be fighting against "black mages" in the gov't and sold "divine protection" for $300,000 a pop.

Earlier this week, St. Petersburg police SWAT teams raided the mysterious "Order of the Path," a cult run by psychologist-turned-"magister" Gayva Tihomirova, and arrested the leader, 78.ru reports. The raids targeted the main "temple" of the organization, which was converted from a two-bedroom apartment, their offices, and the stables outside the city where, the shady Order held their cabals. By day, Tihomirova and company played therapist to wayward souls who wandered into the "temple" looking for help with their troubles. By night, the sinister organization worked on "preventing the apocalypse, protecting life and civilization on planet Earth, and the planet itself" by getting their victims to pay them tens of thousands of dollars for "divine protection" spells.

Hooking the target

An average "client" that Tihomirova's operation targeted was a man like "Roman" (name possibly changed to protect his identity), who spoke to 78.ru. Roman was a well-off St. Petersburg-based businessman with a dark secret: he hit the bottle pretty hard. The rich alcoholic heard about the friendly psychologist from a friend of a friend, and decided to visit the "temple" to try to find a cure for his addiction. At first, the organization drew him in: everyone was friendly, really listened to his concerns, made him feel like they actually cared about him. For a man who got used to hearing from doctors that they couldn't help him, this was a real change of pace. Roman was hooked, and kept coming back for Tihomirova's $100 "balancing" sessions.

Comment: Fear and Knowledge
Fear is very much known to everyone and it is highly contagious. We see it everywhere, especially in today's world. When one becomes fearful, one's mind resorts to a state of being clouded or paralyzed. In order to overcome this kind of fear, one would require knowledge and the ability to think for oneself. Knowledge can surely protect us from that which we would be fearful of.