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Month: August 2020

Massive Beirut Explosion Sinks Nearby Cruise Ship

Massive Beirut Explosion Sinks Nearby Cruise Ship Tyler Durden Wed, 08/05/2020 – 20:30 Tuesday’s massive explosion in Beirut, Lebanon, has so far claimed the lives of 135 people and injured around 5,000. The cause of the explosion was 2,700 tons of ammonium nitrate, sitting unsecured in a warehouse at the Port of Beirut.  Beirut’s governor, Marwan Abboud, said damage from the blast is widespread and extends over half of the city, with the cost of the damage estimated to be more than $3 billion.  For more color on the sheer destruction, Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf cited Lebanese news agency National News Agency (NNA), which reports the blast also sunk a nearby cruise ship. The Orient Queen, owned by Abou Merhi Cruises, measures an overall length of 400 feet long, was sunk by the ammonium nitrate explosion. After the explosion, the vessel was severely left listing to the starboard, with two crew members killed and several injured. The vessel eventually capsized hours later.  Here’s a video of the capsized vessel. غرق الباخرة السياحية Orient Queen pic.twitter.com/kdomynOYGf — Cedar News – أخبار بلاد الأرز (@cedar_news) August 5, 2020 A satellite image via Maxar captured the sunken cruise ship.  One can only speculate this wasn’t a normal...

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The Difference Between Good Economics And Bad

The Difference Between Good Economics And Bad Tyler Durden Wed, 08/05/2020 – 20:05 Submitted by Michael Lebowitz and Jack Scott of Real Investment Advice The Difference Between Good Economics and Bad “Real protection means teaching children to manage risks on their own, not shielding them from every hazard.” ― Wendy Mogel, The Blessing of a Skinned Knee In the five weeks from February 19 to March 26, 2020, the S&P 500 fell 33.9%. Because of all the bizarre things we have seen since then, that seems like such a long time ago. Despite serious questions about how quickly the economy will ultimately rebound from the global shutdown, investors are pricing the stock and bond markets for perfection. Many individual stocks sit at new all-time highs, and credit spreads are tighter today than before the COVID-19 outbreak. Meanwhile, Treasury yields have fallen to levels well below those seen before the pandemic. Mortgage rates for a 30-year term are below 3.00%. Eerily, equity volatility remains quite elevated suggestive of investor anxiety and illiquidity. As investors, we tend to draw conclusions based on market behavior. When Treasury yields fall, for example, it is not unreasonable to think it portends undetected economic weakness. If credit spreads tighten, it is plausible to believe that the cause is strengthening corporate revenue and earnings. What if, however, signals are misleading as described above? What if the...

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Hezbollah Linked To Stockpiles Of Ammonium Nitrate Uncovered In Europe: Report

Hezbollah Linked To Stockpiles Of Ammonium Nitrate Uncovered In Europe: Report Tyler Durden Wed, 08/05/2020 – 19:40 In the immediate aftermath of the massive explosion that rocked Beirut yesterday, killing over 100 and leaving more than 4,000 injured while leveling an entire district of the city, and leaving destruction up to miles away, both the Israeli government and Hezbollah denied having anything to do with it, or that it was the result of missile attack, sabotage, or bombing. The official Lebanese government explanation emerged after the prime minister identified that the blast that produced a shockwave and mushroom cloud that even briefly blocked out the sun, was linked to 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate which had unsafely sat in storage on the port going back to 2013. But now Israeli and Western media sources are taking a fresh look at Hezbollah’s activities related to the chemical compound commonly used in fertilizer, and which it should be noted was the same used in the Oklahoma City bombing on April 19, 1995. Via BBC/Reuters: An ammonium nitrate explosion can release toxic gases, feared in the wake of the Beirut explosion that leveled parts of the city. The Jerusalem Post reports Wednesday: Hezbollah kept three metric tons of ammonium nitrate, the explosive thought to be behind the mega blast in Beirut this week, in a storehouse in London, until MI5 and the London Metropolitan Police found it in 2015....

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Robot Uses Face Scanning AI To Ask People To Wear A Mask

Robot Uses Face Scanning AI To Ask People To Wear A Mask Tyler Durden Wed, 08/05/2020 – 19:15 By Paul Joseph Watson of SummitNews With masks now becoming mandatory in many countries inside supermarkets, public buildings and transport systems, SoftBank Robotics Europe has reprogrammed its “cutesy” Pepper android to help enforce the new rules. A video demonstration shows the robot scanning people’s faces and then telling individuals not wearing a mask to put one on, while thanking those who are already wearing them. “Using an image recognition AI and Single Shot Detector, Pepper can scan the faces of up to five people at once,” reports Engadget. “On Pepper’s tablet, a green circle will appear around an image of anyone wearing a mask, and a red circle will appear around the image of anyone without a mask. Pepper can thank people for wearing masks or remind someone to put a face covering on.” The company asserts that no personal data is used or stored, although face scanning technology is widely used by both companies and governments in dictatorial states like China to enforce compliance and punish social credit score dissenters. The efficacy of masks continues to be hotly debated, with experts in both the Netherlands and Sweden saying they are pointless while others arguing that they may even help spread the disease because wearers touch them often and are more likely to ignore...

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Twitter Follows Facebook, Deletes Trump Campaign Post Over COVID-19 “Misinformation”

Twitter Follows Facebook, Deletes Trump Campaign Post Over COVID-19 “Misinformation” Tyler Durden Wed, 08/05/2020 – 18:44 Update (2052ET): Hours after Facebook nuked a clip of President Trump telling “Fox & Friends” that children are “almost immune” to COVID-19, Twitter has followed suit – reportedly locking the Trump campaign account and deleting the offending tweet, according to the Washington Post (which erroneously reported that Twitter had banned Trump’s personal account). Twitter spokesperson Liz Kelley told the Post that the tweet “is in violation of the Twitter Rules on COVID-19 misinformation. The account owner will be required to remove the Tweet before they can Tweet again.” As of this report, the tweet appears to have been removed from the @teamtrump timeline. It is unclear if the account can post once again. *  *  * Just when Mark Zuckerberg really looked to be making inroads with Trump and his inner circle by resisting a corporate ad boycott on the grounds that it was a misguided attempt to push more conservative voices off the world’s most popular social media platform, Facebook on Wednesday removed a post from the president’s page for containing allegedly “false and misleading” information about the coronavirus. The post that was removed contained a snipped from a Fox & Friends morning interview with Trump from earlier Wednesday where the president claimed young children are “almost immune” to the virus. “This...

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