The Power of Facebook
Facebook is tantamount to the internet. More than 1 billion people use it every day. To the extent that those billion visit other websites, they often do so via a link from Facebook. Even if not all media companies publish directly on Facebook, this is where their users share, engage with the content, and discuss it. This makes Facebook, if not a media company, then definitely a gatekeeper for all media companies in the world.
An increasing part of the population states that Facebook is their main deliverer of information about what is going on in the world. Zuckerberg is de facto the most powerful editor-in-chief on the globe. His influence is greater than all the Rupert Murdochs of this world could dream about.
Syrian rebels target Government Supply Lines in AleppoThe Syrian rebels are targeting Syrian Government Supply Lines in Aleppo. If successful, the rebels claim that they would use this to their advantage as a bargaining chip to secure humanitarian access to the eastern half of the city, which they control, rather than attempt to break the siege itself by military means.
Our view is that, the "rebels", aka "Al Nusra and Al Qaeda terrorists", were so concerned about humanitarian access to the eastern half of the city, that they shot down a Russian helicopter providing humanitarian access to the eastern half of the city, killing all 5 crew on board.
They then gathered round the burning wreckage of the helicopter, screaming "Allah Akhbar (God is great)", filmed the whole gory scene, and uploaded the film to the web.
Why are Western Governments are supporting these "rebels"?
12th July 2016 - Labour’s national executive committee and Jeremy Corbyn
Len McCluskey, the Unite general secretary, has been on the Today programme. He said that if Labour’s national executive committee tries to exclude Jeremy Corbyn from the Labour leadership contest when it meets this afternoon, that would be a “sordid fix”.
The reality is that this would be more than a sordid fix. The rules are quite clear, and it is disgraceful that the rebel Labour MP's are trying to twist the rules to suit their own agenda.
If Labour’s national executive committee go along with this shameful and underhand attempt to rig the ballot, they will send a message that Labour is a party of dishonesty where party politics trumps doing the right thing. What sort of message would that be to the hundreds of thousands who have recently joined Labour, and to the millions of voters across the country?
6th July 2016 - Tony Blair should keep quiet
His attempts at justification can only cause pain to the families of the soldiers killed as well as the families of the hundreds and thousands of Iraqis who have died, and the millions of people in Iraq who have seen their country turned into a living hell. Telling those Iraqis that they are better off because Blair and Bush removed Saddam, will not currently prove a popular view in Iraq.
The only words that most of these people are interested in hearing from Tony Blair, are words he utters in his defence from the dock at the Hague...
25th June 2016 - Brexit chickens will come home to roost for the Brexit Leaders
Brexit will come home to roost for the Brexit Leaders, sooner or later. People already realize that they have been lied to, i.e., £350 million a week extra is not about to be put into the NHS because of Brexit, etc
People will also realize that Project Fear, which has turned into Project Farce, will also be Project fact, with the facts probably being worse than predicted.
The effects of Brexit will hit people hard. The people who voted for Brexit, will then ask themselves if it was worth it, and turn their fire on the Brexit leaders and cheerleaders....
Perhaps many Brexiters do not realise it yet, but they have actually lost. With one fell swoop, David Cameron in his resignation speech, effectively annulled the referendum result, and simultaneously destroyed the political careers of Boris Johnson, Michael Gove and leading Brexiters who cost him so much anguish, not to mention his premiership.
Throughout the campaign, Cameron had repeatedly said that a vote for leave would lead to triggering Article 50 straight away. Whether implicitly or explicitly, the image was clear: he would be giving that notice under Article 50 the morning after a vote to leave. Whether that was scaremongering or not is a bit moot now but, in the midst of the sentimental nautical references of his speech yesterday, he quietly abandoned that position and handed the responsibility over to his successor.
And as the day wore on, the enormity of that step started to sink in: the markets, Sterling, Scotland, the Irish border, the Gibraltar border, the frontier at Calais, the need to continue compliance with all EU regulations for a free market, re-issuing passports, Brits abroad, EU citizens in Britain, the mountain of legislation to be torn up and rewritten ... the list grew and grew.
The referendum result is not binding. It is advisory. Parliament is not bound to commit itself in that same direction.
The Conservative party election that Cameron triggered will now have one question looming over it: will you, if elected as party leader, trigger the notice under Article 50?
Who will want to have the responsibility of all those ramifications and consequences on his/her head and shoulders?
Boris Johnson knew this yesterday, when he emerged subdued from his home and was even more subdued at the press conference. He has been out-manoeuvred and check-mated.
If he runs for leadership of the party, and then fails to follow through on triggering Article 50, then he is finished. If he does not run and effectively abandons the field, then he is finished. If he runs, wins and pulls the UK out of the EU, then it will all be over - Scotland will break away, there will be upheaval in Ireland, a recession ... broken trade agreements. Then he is also finished. Boris Johnson knows all of this. When he acts like the dumb blond it is just that: an act.
The Brexit leaders now have a result that they cannot use. For them, leadership of the Tory party has become a poison chalice.
When Boris Johnson said there was no need to trigger Article 50 straight away, what he really meant to say was "never". When Michael Gove went on and on about "informal negotiations" ... why? why not the formal ones straight away? ... he also meant not triggering the formal departure. They both know what a formal demarche would mean: an irreversible step that neither of them is prepared to take.
All that remains is for someone to have the guts to stand up and say that Brexit is unachievable in reality without an enormous amount of pain and destruction, that cannot be borne. And David Cameron has put the onus of making that statement on the heads of the people who led the Brexit campaign.
May 2016 - Brexit: If it’s not broke, don’t fix it…
Britain has had 43 years of economic prosperity as a member of the EU. IN the early to mid seventies, the British economy was in a lot of trouble and Britain had to go to the IMF. After becoming an EEC member, Britain slowly began to catch up. Gross domestic product per person has grown faster than Italy, Germany and France in the 43 years since. In 2013, Britain became more prosperous than the average of the three other large European economies for the first time since 1965.
Britain has done really well through being a member of the EU club. Why throw this away for a lot of uncertainty and a possible return to what prevailed for the British economy in the early to mid seventies. Like any club, the EU could be better, but Britain can only help to make it better if its inside the club, and not outside (where it would still have to abide by the rules of the club if it wanted access to the biggest market the UK has.)
If it’s not broke, don’t fix it…
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