Monday assorted links


#1 I don't know if they have it anymore, but Aer Lingus used to a have a 'no' sign over a picture of a catapult during boarding. The 'no catapults' policy is still apparently on their website though.


#2 Absolutely. And this is doing it right too. Always bring plan B and keep plan A for next year. 2020's release will be Applman. 2021 BNANAman. Etc. Definitely not complacent!

#4, #5 Among the world's most heavily surveilled nations, with a social credit system, a dark-money and lending market worth 20% of GDP, virtually no inter-bank transparency, and single-party control of all of the nation's 'privately' held enterprises...

China wants to adopt crypto while having a shortage of Dollars (like a lot of other countries that shall remain nameless) while engaging in low-level trade warfare with the USA and trying to pull of the biggest logistics re-alignment in - using their words - the last 250 years.


Nothing to see here. Go back to bed.

6. the neuroscientists announced a plan to fix the deep fake internet issue using mice and their previously unknown ability to distinguish human vs. non human speech!

Neuroscience has so far been unable to locate the Brazilian brain making it a mystery on par with dark matter and black holes.

self recommending
whazzup with these crazy canucks!

I wonder if "catapults" has the same meaning in the US that it does in Ireland. Here's what seems to be a photo of the warning sign about "no catapults, darts, etc." and it shows images of what Americans would call a slingshot, next to a dart (which Americans would probably not even recognize if not for the word "darts" next to the image).

A few years ago I printed out my boarding pass for United Airlines and it had a list of prohibited items, including "no hoverboards". I thought UAL was going all Back to the Future on me but a friend pointed out that fancy motorized skateboards or whatever they are were now being called hoverboards.

I.e. UAL wasn't issuing a warning to Doc Brown, and Aer Lingus may not have been issuing a warning to Edward Longshanks.

Also wikipedia says that "catapult" is an alternative name for "slingshot".

4. Since Alibaba purchased the South China Morning Post (the location of the article at the link), some have expressed the view that the Post is simply a voice for China's government; critics claimed that Alibaba purchased the Post at the end of 2015 because the Post questioned Alibaba's business practices, including selling counterfeit goods (some criticize Amazon for the same reason). In any case, the article at the link seems to be encouraging China firms to divest ownership of assets in the U.S., but the article might be interpreted as a warning to the Trump administration. From the article:

"But analysts believe China’s reserves may be insufficient to pay for its massive imports and debt payments in response to a worse-case scenario caused by the ongoing trade war with the United States, particularly since many of its assets cannot readily be turned into cash to help the central bank to save a crashing financial system or sharp devaluation of the yuan’s exchange rate."

For those who don't get the point: Trump famously said winning a trade war would be easy, so he triggered one, either from arrogance or ignorance. China is saying we call your trade war and raise a financial crisis; will Trump's arrogance or ignorance trigger a financial crisis too, as China dumps trillions in assets (on the pretext that China needs more reserves) and asset prices tumble around the world as confidence collapses.

…Except that China sells treasuries on the upside of the USD/CNY curve. The 'trade war' is a storyline they put out to hide the fact they sell to stabilize the exchange rate, not the other way around. People's Bank of China and the Chinese government don't set amount and value of their Dollar and treasury holdings, the market does.

Too late
Too late
Will be the cry
When getting back in treasuries
Has passed them by.

I'm not referring to the price of treasuries; indeed, if China triggers a financial crisis, the price of treasuries will go up not down.

stupid question time...why doesn't china float its currency?

#3 "Half-Indian" turns into Chinese cause its from a Chinese newspaper

Obama is half-white but leftwing SJWs and rightwing racists made him black.

Obama's dad was an unemployed Italian pizza maker. The whole born in Kenya thing was about getting the black vote.

#5) "Unlike decentralized blockchain-based offerings, the PBOC’s currency is intended to give Beijing more control over its financial system." Orwell lives!

Isn't one of the main use cases of crypto to allow people trapped in politically unstable countries to evade capital controls?

Cryptocurrencies we have now are popular for that, yes.

That doesn't make it inherent in the concept, though.

China can easily have one that - see comments below - lets Beijing audit the blockchain to see where ... EVERYONE spent their money!

(I will die on the hill of "crypto" = "cryptography", and "cryptocurrency is not just 'crypto'".)

#2) Gave me a nice Straussian chuckle.

#3, even more interesting than the evolution of reggae music is the cultural anthropology of Chinese Jamaicans.

#2 - "Tomatan" is an absolute genius name for this robot!

#1: Given TC's ceaseless signaling about how worldly/well-traveled he is, it is truly curious how he didn't know Italian cathedrals expect people to have their shoulders and knees covered.

Ever wonder how TC used to travel to get to all those destinations...let's just say he didn't fly commercial *Wink* *Wink* -- things won't be as fun now without me!

It’s not clear to me that Tyler’s referencing an article infers that he didn’t know something. Maybe I’m missing something here.

Reminds me of the time my wife and I visited the Duomo with my Milanese cousins, one of whom was a 30 something young woman who was denied entry because her skirt was too short. Now, that was a good laugh! Like all Italians, she didn’t just slink off in defeat but rather argued it out with the guards. Upon realizing they weren’t dealing with some know-nothing tourist they relented and let her in with a “warning.”

It's curious that TC would be in a group with someone who didn't know such basic tourist information.

Blog post, not article.

And the photo of TC in front of the cathedral in said blog post would suggest otherwise, no?

I see now. Clearly I didn't read well or understand the context of the post.

6. Can mice detect deep fakes?

How do they do around Mickey?

20th anniversary of José Bové’s 'attack' on a McDonald's in rural France.
A good look at the American-EU trade war during the 1990s and what happened since.


3) cool article & every release of Jamaica Recordings' is great, including 'Dubbing @ Randy's'

I hope it wasn't a fake designer Kimono and that you got a receipt. Tourists can be slapped with big fines for buying counterfeit goods and, at least at one point, there were also fines for failing to get and keep a receipt. We found interesting for a little while to watch African street vendors playing hide-and-seek with the authorities. Once, though, we did take the risk of buying a fake Burberry umbrella from an African street vendor since a storm was on the way and we had no rain gear. Fortunately we escaped unscathed by both weather and Carabinieri.

I find the idea of replacing cash in all of China with a cryptocurrency basically unbelievable. Maybe in big cities, but throughout the countryside? To the extent this is being driven by Libra, this looks unnecessary as so far I do not think Libra is going anywhere serious, despite Tyler's moderate enthusiasm for it.

#1 I found this surprising. I have visited loads of places where they expect people to dress modestly but in my experience the ushers themselves generally offer some kind of cover-up.

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