Showing posts from October 4, 2016

Panic, Anxiety Spark Rush to Build Luxury Bunkers for LA's Superrich

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[In fear of the peasants' pitchforks or, more to the point, the revolution's guillotines. And more from the guillotine watch: Saudi princess who fled Paris after ‘instructing a bodyguard to kill a decorator’ is named – as her would-be ‘hitman’ is arrested. *RON*]

By Ingrid Schmidt, Hollywood Reporter, 28 September 2016
Oscar winners, sports stars and Bill Gates are building lavish bunkers — with amenities ranging from a swimming pool to a bowling alley — as global anxiety fuels sales and owners "could be the next Adam and Eve."

Given the increased frequency of terrorist bombings and mass shootings and an under-lying sense of havoc fed by divisive election politics, it's no surprise that home security is going over the top and hitting luxurious new heights. Or, rather, new lows, as the average depth of a new breed of safe haven that occupies thousands of square feet is 10 feet under or more. Those who can afford to pull out …

Colombia referendum: Voters reject Farc peace deal

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[This result came as a huge surprise. But if you look at the map you'll see there were bit regional differences in support for the peace deal. The people who voted against it felt that "the peace agreement was letting the rebels 'get away with murder.'" If you're not sure what this is about see: Who are the Farc? *RON*]

BBC World News, 3 October 2016

Voters in Colombia have rejected a landmark peace deal with Farc rebels in a shock referendum result, with 50.2% voting against it.

The deal was signed last week by President Juan Manuel Santos and Farc leader Timoleon Jimenez after nearly four years of negotiations.

But it needed to be ratified by Colombians in order to come into force.

Addressing the nation, President Santos said he accepted the result but would continue working to achieve peace.

Greek police fire teargas at pensioners during anti-austerity protest

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[More than a thousand people take part in rally after government imposed cuts on pensions as part of bailout measures. Click on the link under the photo to see a video. *RON*]

Associated Press, The Guardian, 3 October 2016

Greek police have fired teargas and pepper spray at protesting pensioners after a group of them attempted to push over a police van near the office of the prime minister, Alexis Tsipras, whose leftwing government faces mounting pressure over planned austerity measures.

More than a thousand people, some of them with canes, took part in the rally in Athens on Monday. Protesters chanted: “Shame on you, shame on you!” with one group of elderly demonstrators trying to tip over the van, triggering the police response.

Protesters ran, with one grey-haired man falling to his knees and coughing and several others appearing to be in distress.

Chicago’s Struggling Schools Made Wall Street $110 Million From $763 Million in Bonds

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[Comment by reader Mark Isaac: "If the government buys debt and rescues GM and Chrysler, which are now profitable and the debt is repaid -- with profit for taxpayers -- then it's evil Obama and the Dems destroying America. But if JPM buys school debt, and reaps $110 M+ with interest payments coming from everyday citizens who pay their taxes, then it's capitalism at its finest. Gotta love how that works." *RON*]

By Matt Wirz and Heather Gillers, Wall Street Journal, 2 October 2016
The Chicago school system needed money—fast. Two Wall Street players saw an opportunity to invest.

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Chicago-based Nuveen Asset Management have made realized and paper profits exceeding $110 million on purchases this year of $763 million in Chicago Public Schools bonds. The school system has said it needed the money to replenish its dwindling coffers before the new school year and to build and repair facilities.