Leave it to NPR to add guilt to your pleasure. That bon-bon hidden behind your two-year-old bottle of Scotch just took on a whole new layer of sin. With child slavery in the production of chocolate and animal cruelty in the harvesting of coconuts, the conflict confection is born.
According to an animal rights group featured in a recent edition of NPR’s The Salt, abused monkeys are a key ingredient in your Panang curry. While the Thai/Malay practice of using monkeys to harvest coconuts dates back hundreds of years, landing in the crosshairs of activist vegans and SJWs (Social Justice Warriors) is a new phenomenon. Anthropologist Leslie Sponsel, quoted briefly in the NPR article, offered a defense of simian symbiosis. I caught up with Dr. Sponsel at his Hawaii home in hopes of learning more about his fieldwork. “Debate on the morality of enslaving monkeys to get a job done is a Western dilemma, not a Thai one,” Sponsel explained. Continue reading »
– To Pass TPP, U.S. State Dept. Upgrades Malaysia’s Human Trafficking Ranking Despite Discovery of Mass Graves (Liberty Blitzkrieg, July 16, 2015):
When it comes to a choice between human rights, freedom and national sovereignty versus multi-national corporate giveaways, we know which decision the U.S. government makes every time. In the latest slap in the face to anyone stupid enough to still think the American status quo cares about anything other than money and imperial power, I bring you the following from TechDirt:
Earlier this week, we wrote about a troubling move by the US State Department to “upgrade” Malaysia from a “tier 3″ country to a “tier 2″ country regarding human trafficking. This move came despite a near total lack of evidence of any improvement by Malaysia. In fact, just two months ago 139 mass graves were discovered for migrant workers who had been trafficked and/or held for ransom. And the US ambassador to Malaysia had publicly criticized the country for failing to tackle its massive human trafficking problem. Continue reading »
A human trafficking camp was recently discovered in Malaysia, roughly 100 miles from the border of Thailand. Sadly, Malaysia is among many countries notorious for involvement in human trafficking, which is protected by close relationships between the government and the organized crime syndicates that control the industry.
The government doesn’t seem to be doing a very good job pretending that they care, either.
Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim, an official from the Prime Minister’s Department in Malaysia, recently said that the prison camp was actually pretty nice and could be turned into a tourist attraction. Continue reading »
People carry their belongings as they escape flood waters from heavy seasonal rains on a street in Dayeuhkolot, West Java, December 23, 2014 – photo Antara Foto. About 100,000 people in affected regions of Indonesia’s West and Central Java had to leave their homes.
– Massive evacuations as floods hit Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand (RT, Dec 28, 2014)
– Malaysia accuses US and EU backed Ukraine regime of MH17 shoot-down (4bitNews, Aug 9, 2014):
- A Thursday article in the New Straits Times, Malaysia’s flagship English-language newspaper, charged the US- and European-backed Ukrainian regime in Kiev with shooting down Malaysian Airlines flight MH 17 in east Ukraine last month. Given the tightly controlled character of the Malaysian media, it appears that the accusation that Kiev shot down MH17 has the full backing of the Malaysian state.
- The US and European media have buried this remarkable report, which refutes the wave of allegations planted by the CIA in international media claiming that Russian president Vladimir Putin was responsible for the destruction of MH17, without presenting any evidence to back up this charge. Continue reading »
– Former Prime Minister Of Malaysia Accuses CIA Of Covering Up MH-370 Disappearance (ZeroHedge, May 19, 2014):
It has been over two months since Malaysian flight MH-370 disappeared and still not a single credible trace of its final resting place has been found.
In the ongoing din over the confusion surrounding the recovery effort which has led nowhere, even the current Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak recently described the current rescue effort driven by satellite data of the suggested “location” of purported MH370 debris in the Indian Ocean as ‘bizarre’ and ‘hard to believe’. Further, he told CNN when discussing the satellite data which is the basis for the current search in the Indian Ocean that ‘To be honest, I found it hard to believe…. It’s a bizarre scenario which none of us could have contemplated so that’s why when I met the team…of foremost experts in aviation industry I asked them again and again “are you sure?” Continue reading »
– NSA Slits Own Wrist: Classifies MH370 Info – What Do They Know The Rest Of The World Doesn’t Know? (Before It’s News, May 3, 2014)
– Most Damning MH370 Criminal Evidence: Audio Recording Crisis Actors Not In Plane (Video) (Before It’s News, May 3, 2014)
– Voice Recording From Missing Flight MH370 Was Edited (ZeroHedge, May 3, 2014)
– Deep divisions over TPP as US pressures to close controversial deal – WikiLeaks (RT, Dec 9, 2013):
The US is ramping up pressure to secure a Trans-Pacific Trade Deal with conditions that could undermine the national interests of nations involved. WikiLeaks documents say talks are “paralyzed,” with the US refusing to compromise on disputed issues.
Anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks has released two documents revealing the state of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The deal in question includes 12 countries – the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei – which represent more than 40 percent of the world’s gross domestic product.
Tags: Australia, Barack Obama, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Global News, Government, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Obama administration, Peru, Politics, Singapore, TPP, Trans-Pacific Partnership, U.S., Vietnam, WIKILEAKS
FYI. (And I certainly do NOT agree on those recommended countries being the ‘5 best countries’, but it gives you ideas what you could do besides sitting and waiting for the hammer to fall.)
– 5 Best Countries to Move to Before Collapse of the West (Activist Post, March 5, 2013):
It’s been two-and-a-half years since we posted a similar article to this. In just that short time, the national average gas price has gone up from $2.86/gallon to $3.72/gallon, a 30% increase. This is our updated list of where to bug out to.
That which mathematically cannot continue will not continue. Western countries, led by the United States and Europe, are in deep economic trouble. Massive debt levels are strangling their economies, and once great nations like Greece and Spain have been reduced to third-world status with staggering unemployment levels and almost daily violent riots.
– Asian Buyers Snap Up Half of New London Homes (Wall Street Journal, Jan 22, 2013):
If you’ve just moved into a newly built apartment in central London, don’t be perplexed if your neighbors speak mostly Chinese.
Market-cooling measures in Asia have helped fuel interest in London’s real estate market—long a popular destination for property buyers on the prowl, says property consultancy Knight Frank. Last year, overseas buyers spent $3.5 billion on apartments undergoing construction in central London, up 22% from the year earlier.
Together, buyers from Singapore and Hong Kong snapped up nearly 40% of all such apartments in central London. Adding in buyers from Malaysia and mainland China, Asian buyers accounted for roughly half of all purchases. By comparison, U.K. buyers made up just 27% of all purchases of apartments under construction, according to Knight Frank’s latest figures. Such figures were generally consistent with those seen in 2011.
– Pioneering self-contained ‘smart village’ offers world model for rural poverty relief (EurekAlert, July 16, 2012):
California innovation experts counseling Malaysia’s development drive
An innovative, high-tech “smart village” built in Malaysia provides a potential global template for addressing rural poverty in a sustainable environment, say international experts meeting in California’s Silicon Valley.
Rimbunan Kaseh, a model community built north-east of Kuala Lumpur, consists of 100 affordable homes, high-tech educational, training and recreational facilities, and a creative, closed-loop agricultural system designed to provide both food and supplementary income for villagers.
Malaysian Dato’ Tan Say Jim detailed the project Monday at a special meeting in San Jose of the Global Science and Innovation Advisory Council (GSIAC) — a unique assembly of all-star international and Malaysian experts and leaders created to guide sustainable Malaysian development.
The “smart village,” located on 12 hectares in the Malaysian state of Pahang, includes a four-level aquaculture system whereby water cascades through a series of tanks to raise, first, fish sensitive to water quality, then tilapia (“the world’s answer to affordable protein,” says Mr. Tan), then guppies and finally algae. The latter two products are used to feed the larger fish.
– Asian economies turn to yuan (China Daily, Oct 24, 2012):
A “renminbi bloc” has been formed in East Asia, as nations in the region abandon the US dollar and peg their currency to the Chinese yuan — a major signal of China’s successful bid to internationalize its currency, a research report has said.
The Peterson Institute for International Economics, or PIIE, said in its latest research that China has moved closer to its long-term goal for the renminbi to become a global reserve currency.
Since the global financial crisis, the report said, more and more nations, especially emerging economies, see the yuan as the main reference currency when setting their exchange rate.
And now seven out of 10 economies in the region — including South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand — track the renminbi more closely than they do the US dollar. Only three economies in the group — Hong Kong, Vietnam, and Mongolia — still have currencies following the dollar more closely than the renminbi, said the report, posted on the institute’s website.
The South Korean won, for example, has appreciated in sync with the renminbi against the dollar since mid-2010.
What could possibly go wrong?
– Concerns Are Raised About Genetically Engineered Mosquitoes (New York Times, Oct. 30, 2011):
These mosquitoes are genetically engineered to kill — their own children.
Researchers on Sunday reported initial signs of success from the first release into the environment of mosquitoes engineered to pass a lethal gene to their offspring, killing them before they reach adulthood.
The results, and other work elsewhere, could herald an age in which genetically modified insects will be used to help control agricultural pests and insect-borne diseases like dengue fever and malaria.
But the research is arousing concern about possible unintended effects on public health and the environment, because once genetically modified insects are released, they cannot be recalled.
– Bahrain seeks mercenaries from Indonesia, Malaysia & Pakistan (ABC Radio Australia, June 21, 2011):
A noted Saudi scholar claims that Bahrain’s royal family is seeking Indonesian mercenaries to help maintain its grip over the country.
Bahrain has arrested hundreds of state employees, permitted widespread and systematic human rights abuses in its prison and jailed leading political critics… not to mention opening fire on protesters.
In mid-March, troops from Saudi Arabia arrived to help quell the unrest.
Now it’s being claimed that Bahraini officials have travelled to Indonesia, Malaysia and Pakistan to seek mercernaries and more weapons.
Correspondent: Liam Cochrane
Speaker: Ali al-Ahmad, heads the Washington based Institute for Gulf Affairs
- Windows Media
PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia (AP) – Malaysia could be the first country in Asia to use genetically modified mosquitoes to battle a rise in dengue fever, government authorities said Monday.
The program calls for genetically engineered male mosquitoes to be released into the wild that would mate with females and produce offspring that live shorter lives, thus curbing the population.
Malaysian scientists say laboratory test trials have made them optimistic.
“It is a pilot project, and hopefully it will work,” Prime Minister Najib Razak told reporters on the sidelines of a World Health Organization conference in Malaysia.
Dengue fever, spread by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, is common in Asia and Latin America. Symptoms include high fever, joint pains and nausea, but in severe cases, it can lead to internal bleeding, liver enlargement, circulatory shutdown and death. There is no known cure or vaccine.
Efforts to urge Malaysians to keep neighborhoods clean and destroy stagnant sources of water — which are mosquito breeding grounds — have failed, and “innovative ways” are needed to combat dengue, Najib said.
In Malaysia, the number of dengue-linked deaths totaled 117 between January and early October — a 65 percent surge from last year, according to Health Ministry statistics. Dengue infections overall increased 17 percent from last year to more than 37,000 cases.
Malaysian authorities plan to release between 2,000 and 3,000 genetically modified mosquitoes in two areas, said Lim Chua Leng, a Health Ministry official. The plan, which cannot be undertaken without Cabinet approval, would be the first such release of genetically modified mosquitoes in Asia to combat dengue.
HUA HIN, Thailand — Asian leaders will pledge to overcome their differences and push towards the formation of an EU-style community as they wrap up an annual summit in Thailand on Sunday.
Human rights issues, border disputes and signs of apathy over a meeting that was twice delayed by protests have at times marred the gathering of leaders from a region that contains more than half the world’s population.
But plans to increase the region’s global clout by building closer ties eventually dominated the three-day meeting of Southeast Asian nations along with China, Japan, South Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand.
Heads of state at the Thai beach resort of Hua Hin will sign a raft of agreements Sunday on boosting economic and political integration and cooperating on subjects including climate change and disaster management.
Japan’s proposal for a so-called East Asian community will be up for further discussion, after Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said the region should “have the aspiration that East Asia is going to lead the world.”
The 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is also set to restate its commitment to create its own political and economic community by 2015.
Tags: Asia, Australia, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Economy, Global News, Government, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, New World Order, New Zealand, Philippines, Politics, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam
This article is a must read.
Nutricide – Criminalizing Natural Health, Vitamins, and Herbs (Dr. Rima Laibow, M.D.)
By: Dr. Gregory Damato, Ph.D.
(NaturalNews) Codeath (sorry, I meant Codex) Alimentarius, latin for Food Code, is a very misunderstood organization that most people (including nearly all U.S. congressmen) have never heard of, never mind understand the true reality of this extremely powerful trade organization. From the official Codex website (www.codexalimentarius.net) the altruistic purpose of this commission is in “protecting health of the consumers and ensuring fair trade practices in the food trade, and promoting coordination of all food standards work undertaken by international governmental and non-governmental organizations”. Codex is a joint venture regulated by the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO).
Tags: Aflatoxin, Antibiotics, Argentina, Australia, Big Pharma, Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, CODEX Alimentarius, Congress, Disease, Egypt, EU, FAO, FDA, Fluoridation, Fluoride, Food, food supply, Genetically Modified Organisms, Ghana, GMO, Health, Indonesia, Irradiation, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Minerals, Monsanto, Nigeria, nutrition, nutritional value, organic, Pesticides, Pharmaceutical Industry, pharmaceuticals, Politics, Rima E. Laibow, Singapore, South Africa, Sudan, toxic, U.N., U.S., Vitamins, WHO, Zinc
Downward spiral: Chinese stocks have slumped by almost 50pc since October while Mumbai’s BSE index has lost 27pc of its value
Central banks across much of Asia, Latin America, and Eastern Europe will soon have to jam on the breaks or risk a serious crisis as inflation spirals into the danger zone. As the stark reality becomes ever clearer, this year’s correction in emerging market bourses and bond markets has now accelerted into a full-fledged rout.
Shanghai’s composite index touched a fourteen-month low of 2,900 yesterday. It follows moves this week by the central bank raised reserve requirement yet again, draining a further $60bn from the banking system. Chinese stocks have now slumped by almost 50pc since peaking in October.
In India, Mumbai’s BSE index has lost 27pc of its value as the exodus of foreign funds accelerates. The central bank has raised rates to 8pc to curb inflation and halt a run on the rupee, but critics still say the country waited too long to tackle overheating. The current account deficit has shot up to near 3.5pc of GDP. A plethora of subsidies has pushed the budget deficit to 9pc of GDP.
Russia, Brazil, India, Vietnam, South Africa, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Chile – among others – have all had to raise interest rates or tighten monetary policy in recent days. Most are still behind the curve.
“The inflation genie is out of the bottle: easy money is the culprit,” said Joachim Fels, chief economist at Morgan Stanley.
“Weighted global interest rates are 4.3pc, while global inflation is above 5pc. The real policy rate in the world is negative,” he said
The currencies of Korea, Thailand, the Philippines, and Malaysia have come under pressure this week as investors scramble for dollars in moves that echo the East Asia crisis in 1997-1998. Several countries have had to intervene to slow the currency slide.
The sudden shift in sentiment appears to follow comments by Ben Bernanke and Tim Geithner, the heads of the US Federal Reserve and the New York Fed, leaving no doubt that Washington has lost patience with the crumbling dollar.
It is almost unprecedented for Fed officials to take a public stand on the Greenback. The orchestrated move is clearly aimed at halting the vicious circle in the oil markets, where crude prices are feeding off dollar weakness – with multiples of leverage.
The “strong dollar” campaign has switched into high gear. US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson has conducted an aggressive lobbying drive behind the scenes in the Middle East and Asia. America’s friends and foes have been left in no doubt that the enormous strategic might of the United States is now firmly behind the currency. From now on, they cross Washington at their peril.
The markets are now pricing in two rate rises by the Fed this year. Investors no longer doubt that the US – and Europe – will do what is needed to restore credibility. This display of resolve has suddenly switched the focus to the very different universe of emerging markets, where a host of countries have repeated the errors of the 1970s.
Richard Cookson, a strategist at HSBC, advises clients to slash their holdings in these regions.
“Inflation looks like a very real problem in Asia, and the risk is that investors will lose faith in the region’s currencies. Although markets have fallen savagely from their peaks, they’re still looking pricey. We’ re lopping exposure even further, to zero,” he said.
“Where to put the money? We think corporate debt is stunningly cheap compared with equities. Seven-year to ten-year ‘BBB’ [rated] corporate bonds in the US haven’t been this cheap since the Autumn of 2002,” he said.
“Until and unless policy makers in the emerging world – especially those in China – tighten policy dramatically, the inflation rates are unlikely to fall much. Our guess is that most don’t have much will to tighten pre-emptively,” he said.
Russia’s inflation is 15.1pc, yet interest rates are 10.75pc. Vietnam’s inflation is 25pc; rates are 12pc. Fitch Ratings has put the country on negative watch and warns of brewing trouble in the Ukraine, Kazakhstan, the Balkans, and the Baltic states. The long-held assumption that emerging markets are strong enough to shrug off US troubles is now facing a serious test. The World Bank has slashed its global growth forecast to 2.7pc this year. The IMF and the World Bank define growth below 3pc a “global recession”.
There is a dawning realization that China is facing a major storm as inflation (7.7pc), the rising yuan (up 5pc this year), soaring oil prices, and an economic downturn in the key export markets of North America and Europe all combine to crush profit margins. China uses five times as much energy as the US to produce a unit of GDP. It is acutely vulnerable to the energy crisis.
A quarter of the 800 shoe factories in the Guangdong region have shut down in recent months, and several thousand textile workshops are battling to stay afloat. Hong Kong’s industry federation has warned that 10,000 firms operating in the South of China may soon go out of business.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
Last Updated: 13/06/2008
The global free market for food and energy is facing its biggest threat in decades as a host of countries push through draconian measures to hold down prices, raising fears of a new “resource nationalism” that could endanger world food security.
Somali’s demonstrate against high food prices in the capital Mogadishu. At least two people were killed in clashes
India shocked the markets yesterday by suspending trading in futures contracts for a range of farm products in a bid to clamp down on alleged speculators and curb inflation, now running at 7.6pc.
The country’s Forward Markets Commission said contracts for soybean oil, chana (chickpeas), potatoes, and rubber had been banned for four months, even though a report by the Indian parliament last month concluded that soaring food costs had almost nothing to do with the futures contracts. Traders in Mumbai slammed the ban as an act of brazen political populism.
The move has been seen as a concession to India’s Communist MPs – key allies of premier Manmohan Singh – who want a full-fledged ban on futures trading in sugar, cooking oil, and grains.
As food and fuel riots spread across the world, a string of governments have resorted to steps that menace the free flow of food and key commodities. Argentina has banned beef exports, while Egypt and India have stopped shipments of rice.
Kazakhstan has prohibited wheat exports. Russia has slapped a 40pc export duty on shipments, and Pakistan a 35pc duty.
China, Cambodia, Malaysia, Philipines, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam have all imposed export controls or forms of rationing to ease the crisis.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has warned that this lurch towards national controls is becoming a threat to the open global system we all take for granted. “If not handled properly, this crisis could result in a cascade of others and affect political security around the world,” he said.
A new report by UBS says the scramble for scarce raw materials is turning ever more political, with ominous implications for ill-endowed societies that rely on imports.
“The bottom line is that countries with resources, particularly in food and energy are becoming more protective of these resources,” it said.
(I know I am repeating myself and I know that many are already well prepared. This is for the ones that are not:
Store food and water “NOW”. Do this in a relaxed manner because your brain shuts down when you are under stress and in survival mode. – The Infinite Unknown)
Tags: Argentina, Ban Ki-moon, Cambodia, China, Commodities, copper, Energy, famine, Food, Food Crisis, Food Prices, Food Riots, Government, Grain, Hedge Funds, India, Inflation, Malaysia, Mexico, Middle East, Oil, Oil Futures, Philippines, Russia, soybeans, Sri Lanka, U.N., U.S., UBS, Vietnam, Wall Street Journal, wheat
The New York Botanical Garden may be best known for its orchid shows and colorful blossoms, but its researchers are about to lead a global effort to capture DNA from thousands of tree species from around the world.
The Bronx garden is hosting a meeting this week where participants from various countries will lay the groundwork for how the two-year undertaking to catalog some of the Earth’s vast biodiversity will proceed.
The project is known as TreeBOL, or tree barcode of life. As in a similar project under way focusing on the world’s fish species, participants would gather genetic material from trees around the world.
A section of the DNA would be used as a barcode, similar to way a product at the grocery store is scanned to bring up its price. But with plants and animals, the scanners look at the specific order of the four basic building blocks of DNA to identify the species.
The resulting database will help identify many of the world’s existing plant species, where they are located and whether they are endangered. The results are crucial for conservation and protecting the environment as population and development increases, said Damon Little, assistant curator of bioinformatics at the Botanical Garden and coordinator of the project.
(No way that this is only about identifying the species and finding out weather they are endangered or not.
What could a scientist possibly do with DNA?
Why have massive, high level security ‘Doomsday’ Seed Vaults been built just recently?
Just in case you have missed these articles:
African seed collection first to arrive in Norway on route to Arctic seed vault
Maybe, just maybe, could it be that this is more than a coincidence? …and there are no coincidences.
Maybe some of the – socially accepted – most powerful people in the world are expecting a catastrophe of epic proportions. – The Infinite Unknown) Continue reading »
Huge budget deficit means millions more face starvation.
Ears of wheat growing in a field. Photograph: Steve Satushek/Getty images
The United Nations warned yesterday that it no longer has enough money to keep global malnutrition at bay this year in the face of a dramatic upward surge in world commodity prices, which have created a “new face of hunger”. Continue reading »
Tags: Afghanistan, budget deficit, China, Climate Change, Commodities, Egypt, Eritrea, Food Riots, Guinea, Hunger, India, Indonesia, Inflation, iofuels, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mexico, Morocco, Pakistan, Philippines, rationing, Russia, Senegal, starvation, United Nations, Uzbekistan, WFP, wheat, Yemen, Zimbabwe