The Sisters of Mercy – I Was Wrong

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Andrew Eldritch (born Andrew William Harvey Taylor, 15 May 1959) is an English singer, songwriter and musician. He is the frontman and only remaining original member of the Sisters of Mercy, a band that emerged from the British post-punk scene, transformed into a gothic rock band and, in later years, flirted with hard rock.

Andrew Eldritch was born in the small cathedral city of Ely in 1959.Eldritch studied French and German literature at the University of Oxford before moving to Leeds around 1978 to study Mandarin Chinese at the University of Leeds; he left both courses before graduating. He speaks fluent French and German and has some knowledge of Dutch, Italian, Russian

 

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35 cities in China are as wealthy as some countries

Decades of skyrocketing economic growth have resulted in some Chinese cities having economies as big as many countries.

An infographic, made by Visual Capitalist, compares some cities in China, which has a population of 1.4 billion people. The numbers are gross domestic product (GDP) by purchasing power parity (PPP). Have you heard of the cities of Suzhou, Wuhan or Tangshan, which are as wealthy as Austria, Israel or New Zealand?

Courtesy of: Visual Capitalist

These Chinese towns are not isolated, and are connected creating megaregions like the Northeast US, in which New York City, Philadelphia, Boston, Baltimore, and Washington, DC are close to each other, creating a mega economic zone, Visual Capitalist explains.

In China, there are three important megaregions.

Yangtze River Delta

With a combined GDP of $2.17 trillion, the region unites cities like Shanghai, Suzhou, Hangzhou, Wuxi, Ningbo, and Changzhou, and is economically as big as Italy.

Pearl River Delta

With a combined GDP of $1.89 trillion, the region unites cities like Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Foshan, Dongguan, and Macao, and is as wealthy as South Korea.

Beijing-Tianjin

With a combined GDP of $1.14 trillion, the region unites the two largest cities in northern China, Beijing, and Tianjin. This megaregion’s economy can be compared to Australia.

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Huge stock market collapse is coming !

Following Jim Roger’s latest prediction of the “biggest crash in our lifetimes,” famed 81-year-old investor Mark Mobius says the US stock market is set for a huge correction that would be trouble for everyone.

“I can see a 30 percent drop. The market looks to me to be waiting for a trigger to tumble,” Mobius said, as quoted by the London-based Financial News.

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Crash test dummies in a car © Simon Katzer

 

According to Mobius, the former executive chairman at Templeton Emerging Markets, all the indicators now point to a great fall in the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones. “The consumer confidence is at all-time high in the US, and it’s not a good sign,” he said. “The market looks to me to be waiting for a trigger that will cause it to tumble.

“You can’t predict what that event might be – perhaps a natural disaster or war with North Korea,” he said, stressing that a fall in the US market would mean trouble for everyone.

The veteran investor, who predicted the start of the bull market in 2009, warns that any drop could be strengthened by the increasing use of exchange traded funds (ETFs), which account for nearly half of all trading in US stocks. The ETFs could evoke further declines once markets fall.

“You have computers and algorithms working 24/7 and that would basically create a snowball effect. There is no safety valve to prevent further falls, and that fall would escalate very quickly,” Mobius told the media. “ETFs represent so much of the market that they would make matters worse once markets start to tumble.”

Earlier this year, another investment veteran, Jim Rogers, said that the next bear market would “be worst in our lifetime.”One of the world’s richest men, Bill Gates, said that a 2008-like financial crisis was a certainty.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

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Guardian’s journalist accuses mainstream media of ‘groupthink’, ‘intolerance’ and elitism

Guardian columnist Owen Jones has fired an opinion-rocket right into the midst of his own kind – journalists. His claim that the mainstream media is an invite-only club run by public school pals has not gone down well.
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It began when the author and columnist tweeted some of the lessons he’s learned working in the British media. Labeling the profession a “cult” in the UK, Jones goes on to say the mainstream media (MSM) is “afflicted by a suffocating groupthink, intolerant of critics, hounds internal dissenters, full of people who made it because of connections and/or personal background rather than merit.”

Hurling such accusations against the British media did not solicit a positive reaction from the club’s members. Jones himself described the onslaught that followed against him as an “inferno” of fury… which in turn, sparked an article detailing exactly what is wrong with the UK press.

Journalists from publications across London (where most mainstream outlets are based) were outraged by the comments. There were anecdotes given to disprove Jones – with one reporter even quipping that “no one tells me what to think.”

Jones goes on to describe what’s known as the ‘huddle’ – to put it simply, that’s when reporters get together after Prime Minister’s Questions (or other media events frequented by lobby journalists) to decide what to say or write about. “[L]obby journalists will often stand together and/or walk back to the press lobby together and agree on ‘what just happened,’ if you like,” Jones writes.

Other ways the huddle – or “groupthink,” as he calls it – manifests in the media is through peer pressure. Jones included a comment from right-wing blogger Paul Staines in explanation: “there is for example peer pressure on new hacks to not rock the boat,” even if that pressure is applied by an “exasperated collective groan [from other reporters] if someone asks a dissonant question.”

Staines’ comments end by adding that it is “not a conspiracy, just peer pressure.”
Times columnist David Aaronovitch‏, ex-BuzzFeed writer James Ball, Financial Times editorial director Robert Shrimsley‏, and freelance journalist Robin Whitlock were some of many to swipe back at Jones. ITV news royal editor Chris Ship simply tweeted back his educational history, as the virtue signaling and defensiveness told their own story.

PoliticsHome editor Kevin Schofield followed suit. “I grew up in a working class household, went to state schools, worked my arse off on local papers for years and finally made it to Fleet St,” he tweeted, nose thoroughly out of joint.

It turns out Jones was referring to the media elite of the national titles and broadcasters; and not the “army of poorly paid and insecure freelancers or local reporters who are deeply undervalued,” as he describes them.

To go with the truth bomb he lobbed into the center of the media scrum, Jones dug up one or two supporting statistics – and it turns out that many in the media had a very privileged start to life.

“Just 7% of the British population are privately educated. But according to the Sutton Trust in 2016, 51% of Britain’s top journalists are privately educated,” Jones writes. Poverty Commission in 2014, 43% of newspaper columnists are privately educated; just 23% went to comprehensives. Two thirds of new entrants to journalism came from managerial and professional backgrounds: more than twice the level of the rest of the population.

“According to another government study, journalists are second only to doctors when it comes to the dominance of those from professional or managerial parental backgrounds. In other words: journalism is one of the most socially exclusive professions in Britain.”

That hasn’t stopped journalists and writers from coming out of the woodwork to slam Jones – or, at least, to enjoy others doing so.

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Hungarians stage second big anti-Orbán protest

Tens of thousands of Hungarians marched in opposition to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán for the second week in a row on Saturday night.

Demonstrators called for a free media and independent civil society, with an NGO leader and a former reporter from Magyar Nemzet — an oligarch-owned newspaper critical of the prime minister that closed down days after Orbán’s landslide election victory earlier this month — addressing the crowd.

The most high-profile speaker was Péter Márki-Zay, an independent conservative and political novice who defeated a Fidesz candidate in a mayoral by-election in the southern town of Hódmezővásárhely in February. Opposition supporters hope he can unite their highly fragmented ranks, as someone who could appeal to nationalist-minded voters in the countryside while not alienating liberal-leaning Budapest voters.

Orbán’s right-wing Fidesz party won almost 50 percent of the vote in a general election on April 8 to secure two-thirds of seats in parliament. His government has been accused by opposition leaders, rights activists and Western politicians of backsliding on democracy and the rule of law.

Parliament is expected to pass legislation next month that will make it impossible for some NGOs to continue operating in Hungary. Orbán says such organizations are meddling in domestic politics.

The protesters plan to stage another demonstration on May 8. Past anti-Orbán protest movements fizzled out after a few weeks, and the next rally will test organizers’ ability to keep crowds motivated.

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Jihadist civil war turns into bloodbath in northern Syria

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:10 P.M.) – Jabhat Tahrir Souriya launched a big attack in the western countryside of Aleppo, today, targeting Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham’s positions in several areas.

The Jabhat Tahrir Souriya attack would prove effective, as their forces managed to capture several towns from Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham in the western countryside of Aleppo.

 Among the localities captured by Jabhat Tahrir Souriya, today, were the following towns: Balnta, Al-Habateh, Al-Sadiyah and Jamiyat Al-Sadiyah.

The battle was reportedly very costly for all parties involved, as more than 20 jihadists were killed on both sides.

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PM Sargsyan resigns amid Armenia’s widening protests

Armenia’s newly appointed Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan has bowed to widening public protests against his rule and resigned from his post.

In a Monday statement, Sargsyan said that he was wrong to cling to power after serving for 10 years as president, adding that he resigned to help end a political dispute that widened after parliament elected him as prime minister last Tuesday.

“I leave the post of this country’s prime minister,” said the statement, adding, “The movement on the streets is against my office. I will fulfill your claim.”

Sargsyan’s resignation came right after a main leader of the opposition was released by police.

Hundreds of uniformed officers joined popular demonstrations in the capital Yerevan earlier on Monday, calling for the release of Nikol Pashinyan who had been detained on Sunday for orchestrating the protests.

People march during a protest against the appointment of ex-president Serzh Sargsyan as the new prime minister in Yerevan, Armenia, on April 23, 2018. (Photo by Reuters)

The officers alongside the protesters chanted “Nikol! Nikol!” and called on Sargsyan to offer his resignation to end the political standoff in the South Caucasus country.

In his Monday statement, Sargsyan admitted he was wrong to reject resignation as the condition set by Pashinyan and the protesters to end the protests. The former president walked out of a meeting with Pashinyan on Sunday minutes after it began, accusing the opposition leader of trying to blackmail the government.

Armenian Prime Minister Serzh Sargsyan (L) meets with opposition MP Nikol Pashinyan in Yerevan, Armenia, on April 22, 2018. (Photo by Reuters)

“I appeal to all citizens of the Republic of Armenia and to the ‘Reject Serge’ movement. Nikol Pashinyan was right. I was wrong. This situation requires solutions, but I won’t participate,” read part of the resignation statement by Sargsyan.

Pashinyan addressed protesters right after he was released and said that eleven days of popular protests finally bore fruit.

“I won’t say it later, it’s already clear isn’t it? We have won,” said Pashinyan, adding that he had been kept in isolation by authorities for 24 hours.

The protests escalated last Tuesday when some 40,000 people took to the streets to condemn parliament’s election of Sargsyan as prime minister. The new premier was supposed to rule Armenia with extended powers given to him under the 2015 amendments to the constitution.

 

Cover photo –

Kentron District, Yerevan

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