China’s ‘petroyuan’ oil futures contract spiked tonight by 5% (their daily limit) to a new record high, coinciding with the re-imposition of US sanctions on Iran.
The first of two rounds of US sanctions kicked in at 12:01 am (0431 GMT), targeting Iran’s access to US banknotes and key industries, including cars and carpets.
This is the biggest daily move in China’s oil futures since the contract’s inception in March to a new high of CNY537.2…
Notably decoupling from Brent and WTI futures, suggesting a sudden burst of contract-specific buying demand in the ‘petroyuan’…
As Ritesh Jain notes, via Valuewalk.com, the Petroyuan… Tiny, Irrelevant, Nothing. Right? But who would have thought oil will start getting priced in yuan.
China can just bypass Iran sanctions by pricing oil traded in Chinese currency known as Petroyuan…
The West Hollywood City Council unanimously voted to formally seek the removal of President Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, according to mayor John Duran who tweeted: “West Hollywood City council unanimously passes resolution asking the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce to remove the Donald Trump star on Hollywood Walk of Fame.” Duran then compared President Trump to a dark wizard from Harry Potter known as a horcrux.
West Hollywood City council unanimously passes resolution asking the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce to remove the Donald Trump star on Hollywood Walk of Fame. #horcruxdestroyed #bellicose #belligerent #unAmericanvalues #MakeAmericaintoAmericaAgain
— JohnDuran (@JohnDuran) August 7, 2018
Unfortunately for Duran, the vote was largely symbolic – as it means West Hollywood will ask the Los Angeles City Council and Hollywood Chamber of Commerce to remove the star, which was added in 2007. The Monday night resolution against Trump’s star was “due to his disturbing treatment of women and other actions that do not meet the shared values of the City of West Hollywood, the region, state, and country.”
Similar demands to remove the stars of disgraced celebrities Kevin Spacey and Bill Cosby were refused by the Chamber, which said that stars are never removed since the Walk is a historical landmark.
“Once a star has been added to the walk, it is considered a part of the historic fabric of the Hollywood Walk of Fame,” said former chamber president Leron Gubler. “Because of this, we have never removed a star from the walk.”
Former Hollywood Walk of Fame Committee Chair Johnny Grant said prior to his death; “Stars are awarded for professional achievement to the world of entertainment and contributions to the community. A celebrity’s politics, philosophy, irrational behavior, or outrageous remarks have never been cause to remove a Walk of Fame star.”
Seemingly weekly pick-axings and political skirmishes between Trump supporters and his detractors may test the resolve of officials, however, as the star has been vandalized numerous times and destroyed twice.
In full Trump-defiance, West Hollywood gave porn star Stormy Daniels the keys to the city.
UFC lightweight contender Dustin Poirier and his wife are giving back to their community. After each of his recent fights, Poirier has auctioned off his fight kit to benefit those in need.
Timidity on monetary policy since 2008 has been as costly as the financial crisis
US tech sector’s spending spree faces levies on Chinese imports
This week marks the 100th playing of the PGA Championship, which boasts one of the deepest fields of any golf tournament this year. Here are the numbers to know heading into the season’s final major championship.
I wrote just one post last week and it centered around the dangers posed to society by U.S. tech giants. I specifically called out Facebook, pointing out how company executives are currently groveling to politicians in order to prevent legislation that might deem it a monopoly and curtail its power.
I explained how U.S. politicians prefer to use the power and reach of tech giants for their own ends rather than take them down a notch. Politicians aren’t at all concerned about the outsized influence of centralized tech behemoths engineering society using secret algorithms, they just want to be in control of how this power is abused.
Meanwhile, today’s biggest news is the uniform move by three U.S. tech giants to de-platform Alex Jones and his Infowars website. The main companies involved are Apple, Facebook and Google (via YouTube), as reported in The Guardian:
All but one of the major content platforms have banned the American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, as the companies raced to act in the wake of Apple’s decision to remove five podcasts by Jones and his Infowars website.
Facebook unpublished four pages run by Jones for “repeated violations of community standards”, the company said on Monday. YouTube terminated Jones’s account over him repeatedly appearing in videos despite being subject to a 90-day ban from the website, and Spotify removed the entirety of one of Jones’s podcasts for “hate content”…
Facebook’s and YouTube’s enforcement action against Jones came hours after Apple removed Jones from its podcast directory. The timing of Facebook’s announcement was unusual, with the company confirming the ban at 3am local time.
Put aside what you think of Alex Jones for a moment. If they can do this to him and not fear the repercussions, they can do it to anybody. This is about power, and these platforms together account for a massive share of content distribution in the U.S. Ultimately, this is just a particularly muscular and in your face example of what’s known as Silicon Valley’s cultural imperialism.
I know a lot of people think the answer is to get Congress to do something, as if those monumentally corrupt donor puppets have any interest in helping the public.
I get it, you want Congress to call Facebook a monopoly and break it up.
Unfortunately,here are two hard truths:
1) Politicians would rather use Facebook as a weapon than reduce its power.
2) Politicians don’t work for you.
— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) August 6, 2018
I’ve been saying this for a while. The momentum isn’t with the critics who would actually diminish the big tech companies’ power. The momentum is with people who see the corps’ concentrated influence as a tool to be used. https://t.co/FgczA4kYDj
— Jesse Walker (@notjessewalker) August 6, 2018
I’d also like to point out that Facebook’s stock was up over 4% today, completely shrugging off any potential backlash from users. Executives assume its users are all addled junkies unwilling to give up convenience and their addiction no matter what the company does. Are they right?
Speaking of which, on the same day the move against Jones was announced we learn Facebook is in talks with mega banks to get your financial information.
From The Wall Street Journal:
Facebook Inc.wants your financial data.
The social media giant has asked large U.S. banks to share detailed financial information about their customers, including card transactions and checking account balances, as part of an effort to offer new services to users.
Facebook increasingly wants to be a platform where people buy and sell goods and services, besides connecting with friends. The company over the past year asked JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., Citigroup Inc. and U.S. Bancorp to discuss potential offerings it could host for bank customers on Facebook Messenger, said people familiar with the matter.
Facebook executives don’t actually care about anything besides their profits and power, so the only way you can take any individual action against the company is to delete your account. I haven’t engaged with Facebook since 2012, so permanently deleting it wasn’t a personal sacrifice, but I did it anyway earlier today.
Stop bitching and take action.
Here’s how to delete Facebook, not deactivate, but DELETE (they make it hard).https://t.co/KfgGrfVOKQ
— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) August 6, 2018
Don’t wait for other people to change things for you, stop whining and take some individual responsibility. If you agree that Facebook’s primarily a nefarious narcissism-factory wasteland masquerading as a platform just delete it… before it deletes you.
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This week, “Microsoft Monday” includes details about a rumor circulating about monthly Windows charges, an update on the Surface Go, Skype Classic not being phased out yet, the Movies Anywhere integration and much more!