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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
Thursday 19th of August 2021

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It is my assertion that in due time people will realize that presuming unprecedented valuations achieved through unprecedented liquidity injections was a folly assumption. @NorthmanTrader
World Of Finance

It is my assertion that in due time people will realize that presuming unprecedented valuations achieved through unprecedented liquidity injections in lieu of fundamentals to be a bulletproof basis for sustainability & expected future unprecedented gains was a folly assumption.

The timing of that moment is the riddle however @NorthmanTrader

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Roberto Bolaño The Savage Detectives |

María Font, Angélica Font, and Laura Jáuregui (Belano’s ex-girlfriend) used to belong to a radical feminist movement called Mexican Women on the Warpath.

From above came spooky music that was supposed to be soothing, full of the sounds of birds, ducks, frogs, wind, the sea, and even people’s footsteps on the earth or dry grass, but the general effect was terrifying, like the sound track for a horror movie.

“No, numbers are an illusion, García Madero. For our purposes, five is as good as fifty. That’s what I told Arturo. Make heads roll. Shrink the inner circle until it’s a microscopic dot.”
I thought he was going off the rails, and I kept quiet.

Roberto Bolaño The Savage Detectives | 

I skipped joyfully ahead into the kitchen, where I got out a bottle of Los Suicidas mezcal, a mezcal only made in Chihuahua, limited run, of course, of which I used to receive two bottles each year by parcel post, until 1967.

The three of us were quiet, as if we’d been struck dumb, but our bodies moved to a beat, as if something was propelling us through that strange land and making us dance, a silent, syncopated kind of walking, if I can call it that, and then I had a vision, not the first that day, as it happened, or the last: the park we were walking through opened up into a kind of lake and the lake opened up into a kind of waterfall and the waterfall became a river that flowed through a kind of cemetery, and all of it, lake, waterfall, river, cemetery, was deep green and silent. And then I thought it’s one of two things: either I’m going crazy, which is unlikely since I’ve always had my head on straight, or these guys have doped me. And then I said stop, stop for a minute, I feel sick, I have to rest, and they said something but I couldn’t hear them, I could only see them coming closer, and I realized, I became conscious, that I was looking all around trying to find someone, some witness, but there was no one, we were in the middle of a forest, and I remember I said what forest is this, and they said it’s Chapultepec and then they led me to a bench and we sat there for a while, and one of them asked me what hurt (the word hurt, so right, so fitting) and I should have told them that what hurt was my whole body, my whole being, but instead I told them that the problem was probably that I wasn’t used to the altitude yet, that it was the altitude that was getting to me and making me see things.

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Under the Volcano by Malcolm Lowry (1947)

Malcolm Lowry’s masterpiece about the last hours of an alcoholic ex-diplomat in Mexico is set to the drumbeat of coming conflict
It is November 1939, the Day of the Dead in Quauhnahuac, Mexico. Two men in white flannels, one a film-maker, are looking back to last year’s fiesta.
It was then, we discover, that Geoffrey Firmin – the former British consul, ex-husband of Yvonne, a rampant alcoholic and also a ruined man – embarked on his via crucis, an agonised passage through a fateful day, that would end in Firmin’s killing.
In 12 chapters corresponding to the 12 hours of the consul’s last day on earth, Lowry takes Firmin on a colossal bender, fuelled by beer, wine, tequila and mescal (“strychnine” to our protagonist).
He is drinking himself to death, like Lowry himself, though Under the Volcano is about much more than alcoholism.
Halfway through, the consul decides that “It was already the longest day in his entire experience, a lifetime”.
Lowry himself, a refugee from the Fitzrovia of his contemporary George Orwell and the young Dylan Thomas, described Under the Volcano as “a prophecy, a political warning, a cryptogram, a preposterous movie, and a writing on the wall”

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Whoever Controls The Narrative Controls The World
Law & Politics

"Men respond as powerfully to fictions as they do to realities [and] in many cases they help to create the very fictions to which they respond."

And then I recalled

And it all left me wondering Who exactly is controlling the Console?

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Actions not words count, UK PM @BorisJohnson tells the Taliban @Reuters
Law & Politics

"We will judge this regime based on the choices it makes, and by its actions rather than by its words, on its attitude to terrorism, to crime and narcotics, as well as humanitarian access, and the rights of girls to receive an education," Johnson said.
"No matter how grim the lessons of the past, the future is not yet written. And at its bleak turning point, we must help the people of Afghanistan to choose the best of all their possible futures."

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Taliban opened fire on demonstrators in the eastern city of Khost, #Afghanistan, this footage purportedly shows. @FrudBezhan
Law & Politics

Reports of multiple deaths and injuries after residents took down the white Taliban flag and replaced it with the black, red and green flag of Afghanistan. #Kabul

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Law & Politics

THE TALIBAN HAVE seized U.S. military biometrics devices that could aid in the identification of Afghans who assisted coalition forces, current and former military officials have told The Intercept.
The devices, known as HIIDE, for Handheld Interagency Identity Detection Equipment, were seized last week during the Taliban’s offensive, according to a Joint Special Operations Command official and three former U.S. military personnel, all of whom worried that sensitive data they contain could be used by the Taliban. 

HIIDE devices contain identifying biometric data such as iris scans and fingerprints, as well as biographical information, and are used to access large centralized databases. It’s unclear how much of the U.S. military’s biometric database on the Afghan population has been compromised.

“This updated database will make it more efficient for warfighters to collect, identify and neutralize the enemy,” wrote Col. Senodja Sundiata-Walker, project manager for the Pentagon’s biometrics program.

It was in 1991 [3 decades ago now] that Krauthammer spoke of the “Unipolar Moment” and highlighted that the US had emerged as the center of world power and unchallenged superpower.

The World in the c21st exhibits viral, wildfire and exponential characteristics and feedback loops which only become obvious in hindsight.
It was in 1991 [3 decades ago now] that Krauthammer spoke of the “Unipolar Moment” and highlighted that the US had emerged as the center of world power and unchallenged superpower.
Thirty years later, The US is exiting Afghanistan and we can speak of a Tripolar World with the US, China and Russia now ruling the c21st Roost. 

The ''Salami Slicer'' has snaffled up Hong Kong and the World waits on tenterhooks for the inevitable move on Taiwan.

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The Return of the Taliban @NewYorker Jon Lee Anderson @jonleeanderson3
Law & Politics

Watching Afghanistan’s cities fall to the Taliban in rapid succession, as the United States completes a hasty withdrawal from the country, is a surreal experience, laced with a sense of déjà vu

Twenty years ago, I reported from Afghanistan as the Taliban’s enemies took these same cities from them, in the short but decisive U.S.-backed military offensive that followed the 9/11 attacks

The war on terror had just been declared, and the unfolding American military action was cloaked in purposeful determinism in the name of freedom and against tyranny. 

For a brief moment, the war was blessed by that rare thing: public support, both at home and abroad.
In the wake of the horror of Al Qaeda’s attacks on the United States, most Americans polled believed that the country was doing the “right thing” in going to war in Afghanistan. 

That level of support didn’t last long, but the war on terror did, and so did the military expedition to Afghanistan, which stretched on inconclusively for two decades and now ends in ignominy. 

Donald Trump set this fiasco in motion, by announcing his intention to pull out the remaining American troops in Afghanistan and begin negotiations with the Taliban. 

In February, 2020, an agreement was signed that promised to withdraw all U.S. military forces in return for, among other things, peace talks with the U.S.-backed Afghan government. 

The American troops were duly drawn down, but, instead of engaging in real discussions, the Taliban stepped up their attacks. 

In April, President Joe Biden announced his intention to carry on with the withdrawal, and pull out forces by September 11th. 

However much he says that he does “not regret” his decision, his Presidency will be held responsible for whatever happens in Afghanistan now, and the key words that will forever be associated with the long American sojourn there will include hubris, ignorance, inevitability, betrayal, and failure.
In that regard, the United States joins a line of notable predecessors, including Great Britain, in the nineteenth century, and the Soviet Union, in the twentieth. 

Those historic precedents don’t make the American experience any more palatable. 

In Afghanistan—and, for that matter, in Iraq, as well—the Americans did not merely not learn from the mistakes of others; they did not learn from their own mistakes, committed a generation earlier, in Vietnam.
The main errors were, first, to underestimate the adversaries and to presume that American technological superiority necessarily translated into mastery of the battlefield, and, second, to be culturally disdainful, rarely learning the languages or the customs of the local people. 

By the end of the first American decade in Afghanistan, it seemed evident that the Western counterinsurgency enterprise was doomed to fail, and not only because of the return of the Taliban in many rural parts of the country: the Americans and their nato allies closed themselves off from Afghans in large regional bases, from which they operated in smaller units out of combat outposts, and distrust reined between them and their putative Afghan comrades. 

“Green-on-blue attacks,” in which Afghan security forces opened fire on their American and European counterparts, became alarmingly frequent. The Taliban, meanwhile, grew inexorably stronger.
During a visit to the tense, embattled, eastern province of Khost, in the winter of 2010, a senior American military commander there, Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Lutsky, acknowledged to me the lack of trust with his Afghan counterparts, several of whom he suspected of working with the Taliban

“The cultural complexity of the environment is just so huge that it’s hard for us to understand it,” he said. 

“For Americans, it’s black or white—it’s either good guys or bad guys. For Afghans, it’s not. There are good Taliban and bad Taliban, and some of them are willing to do deals with each other. It’s just beyond us.”
Ten years on, as Afghanistan’s provincial capitals are falling to the Taliban and Kabul itself becomes encircled, the litany of exotic place names—Sheberghan, Taloqan, Kunduz, Kandahar, Herat—must mean little to most Americans, except for those who were once deployed in them. 

But a generation ago, as Afghan mujahideen, or holy warriors, of the so-called Northern Alliance, an anti-Taliban coalition commanded by warlords, battled alongside American Special Forces to free these same towns from the Taliban, they were in the news constantly, as commonplace to Americans then as Benghazi or Raqqa became in later years. 

(In war, as in life, perhaps, people and places can become briefly and often intensely familiar, only to be discarded from memory when their apparent relevance has ceased. Who today remembers Hamid Karzai? Or Mullah Omar?)
When Kunduz and Sheberghan, adjacent cities in northern Afghanistan, fell within a day of each other, last weekend, I wondered how many Americans recalled that these were the sites of some of the bloodiest early episodes of the war, 

in 2001. In the desert outside Kunduz, hundreds and possibly thousands of Taliban and suspected Al Qaeda prisoners of war, who had surrendered to the Northern Alliance after the fall of the city that November, were locked in shipping containers and shot or left to die by forces led by the Afghan warlord Abdul Rashid Dostum, who was working with the C.I.A. and with Special Forces commandos. 

Some of the survivors of that ordeal were selected for rendition by American agents on the ground, and ended up as prisoners in Guantánamo, beginning a controversial new chapter in American judicial history.
At the same time, an uprising by captured Taliban and foreign jihadis, at a nearby fortress named Qala-i-Jangi, resulted in the killing of Johnny Micheal Spann, an American C.I.A. officer—the first American to die in combat in Afghanistan. 

After days of fighting, during which at least three hundred prisoners died, the “American Taliban” John Walker Lindh, a twenty-year-old Muslim convert from California who had become a volunteer with the Taliban forces and had been questioned by Spann, was recaptured, after Dostum flooded the compound’s underground chambers. 

Lindh was returned to the U.S., tried in federal court for providing support to the Taliban, and sentenced to twenty years in a high-security federal prison. 

His presence at the fortress, though there is no evidence that he participated in the revolt, provoked strong feelings in the United States and led to an ongoing debate about national identity and loyalty in the modern age. 

In 2019, Lindh was released three years early, for good behavior, and he is on probation for the remainder of his sentence.
I was on the scene for the fall of Kunduz, in 2001, and was part of a small group of foreign journalists ambushed by Taliban fighters who had remained in hiding and attacked, even as most of their comrades were in the process of surrendering. 

Fortunately, none of us was killed, but the following night, after we returned to the nearby provincial capital, Taloqan, which had already been retaken by the Northern Alliance—and which also fell to the Taliban last weekend—a Swedish journalist was shot and killed by gunmen at the house where he was staying. 

After his death, and considering the lingering presence of numerous Taliban in Taloqan—along with that of allied Uzbek fighters, a group of whom we had seen engaged in last-minute deals with the Northern Alliance—the foreign journalists soon fled the city. 

I joined an armed convoy headed for Kabul, a four-day journey through the Hindu Kush mountains. 

Along the way, we were accosted by Afghan gunmen—perhaps Taliban, perhaps merely highwaymen—but, again, we were lucky, and arrived without loss of life.
Kabul had already fallen, supposedly. At least, the Taliban were visibly gone and, with them, their Al Qaeda friends. 

But, on subsequent days, as I moved around the devastated city, I had reason to wonder how genuine the Western-assisted Northern Alliance victory had been. 

One morning, a group of four women concealed in blue burqas approached me on the street, and one asked if I knew of any work opportunities. 

I was accosted by a furious shopkeeper for daring to communicate across the gender divide. The women scattered. It was as if a malady lingered in the Afghan air, despite the Taliban’s retreat.
Most of the Afghan men whom I met and who led battles against the Taliban two decades ago are now dead. Almost all were killed, in separate assassinations, as part of the Taliban’s plan to return to action

Their comeback has taken twenty years, but it is a classic example of a successful guerrilla war of attrition, and has involved all the usual elements of guerrilla strategy: a stealth campaign of hit-and-run military attacks, selective assassinations to demoralize their adversaries, and acts of terror that both weakened the government and created an atmosphere of abject compliance from local populations

A public campaign of hearts and minds followed, accompanied by decoy negotiations with the government and its allies in order to promote the idea that, as a force, the Taliban are not really extremist and are, in fact, open to dialogue, even to internal change. 

But the Taliban, by their very nature, are fundamentalists, believers in a strict Quranic credo.
In the pre-Taliban days of the late eighties, when I spent time with the mujahideen of Kandahar, who were then fighting the Soviets, a pair of local Islamic scholars banned music after consulting their sacred texts; this rule was added to their list of severe prohibitions, which included death for adulterers and the amputation of hands for thieves. 

In a court, set up in the middle of a battlefield, the two judges explained their sentencing system and told me how many murderers and adulterers they had put to death, after which one of them said, 

“We adhere to the Sharia in all cases.” Patting a pile of holy tracts next to him, he added, “All the answers are here.”
It was this same kind of earnest devotion to Islamic law that earned early popularity for the Taliban, when they emerged in the same area a few years later, after the Soviet retreat, under the leadership of Mullah Omar, a particularly devout mujahideen commander. 

Various mujahideen warlords who had emerged ascendant were fighting one another for power, and some were abusive toward civilians in the areas that they controlled. 

Mullah Omar’s Taliban presented themselves as a moralizing force and made swift headway against the warlords. 

Within a couple years, they controlled most of Afghanistan, and Kabul fell to them in 1996.
With no opposition except for a rump group of Northern Alliance warlords, who held out in the northern mountains for the next few years (until the Americans came along to assist them, in 2001), the Taliban imposed their strict version of Sharia law. 

Afghan women were all but excluded from public life, with many girls prohibited from attending school; the freedom to work for female teachers, doctors, and nurses was drastically circumscribed. 

The Taliban zealotry grew so great that children were forbidden to play with dolls or to fly kites, in favor of prayer sessions, while ethnic minorities and members of religious sects other than the extreme Sunni version of Islam that the Taliban espoused were persecuted. 

In one incident, it is estimated that the Taliban killed at least two thousand ethnic Hazaras, who are Shiite. 

Public executions became a norm, as well, often of women accused of various moral offenses. 

The killings were often carried out on sports fields or in stadiums, with the condemned sometimes stoned to death, or summarily shot in the head, or hanged, or, in the case of homosexuals, crushed and suffocated by mud walls toppled onto them by tanks. 

Before isis, in other words, there was the Taliban, showing how to do things.
In March, 2001—a few months before their Al Qaeda comrades carried out the 9/11 attacks—the Taliban, as a testament to their supposed iconoclastic purity, destroyed the Bamiyan Buddhas. 

These were a pair of giant, fifteen-hundred-year-old sandstone statues, regarded as one of the man-made wonders of the ancient world

Taliban officials also took sledgehammers and axes to priceless artifacts in the Kabul Museum, destroying anything that predated Islamic civilization. The outside world did little to prevent any of these crimes.
The list of atrocities that the Taliban committed while they were in power goes on and on, and in the two decades since their ouster they have murdered again and again, in a war aimed at anyone who opposes them or even represents a potential challenge to them. 

The other day, a Taliban spokesman took credit for the murder, in Kabul, of his government counterpart, in what he called “a special attack.” 

Women have also been among the Taliban’s most consistent victims, from schoolteachers and television presenters to female parliamentarians and judges. 

In March, in the eastern city of Jalalabad, the Taliban killed three young female media workers; a female journalist was killed in June, 

in Kabul, by a car bomb. If the Taliban do sweep back into power in Kabul in the coming weeks, which seems a strong possibility, women will again be among their foremost targets.
There is a conceit that today’s Taliban is different from the Taliban of 2001. This is certainly an idea that some senior Taliban officials have sought to propagate in recent years. 

Facts on the ground suggest otherwise. They claim to have moved on from their old alliance with Al Qaeda, for instance, but over the years they have partnered with other jihadist groups operating, as they have done, out of sanctuaries in neighboring Pakistan, such as the Haqqani network, which is responsible for scores of suicide bombings and so-called complex attacks—involving gunmen and suicide bombers acting in tandem—and for causing hundreds of civilian deaths.
The Taliban have rendered Afghanistan unworkable as a country; unworkable, that is, without them. 

And the truth is that they were never really beaten. They merely did what guerrillas do in order to survive: they melted away in the face of overwhelming force, regrouped and restored themselves to fighting strength, and returned to battle. Here they are.

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.@WHO Weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 - 17 August 2021

The global number of new cases has been increasing for the last 2 months with over 4.4 million cases reported in the past week (9 – 15 August 2021)
, bringing the cumulative number of globally to cases to over 206 million. 

This increasing trend is largely attributed to increases in the Western Pacific Region and the Region of the Americas which reported 14% and 8% increases respectively as compared to the previous week. 

Overall, the number of deaths reported remained similar with over 66 000 deaths this week, as compared to the previous week. 

The regions with the highest weekly incidence rates of cases and deaths per 100 000 population remain the same as last week: 

the Region of the Americas and the European Region reported the highest weekly case (147.4 and 121.6 new cases per 100 000 population, respectively) and death incidence (2.0 and 1.1 new deaths per 100 000 population, respectively).
At the country level, the highest numbers of new cases in the past week were reported by 

United States of America (883 996 new cases; 9% increase)

Islamic Republic of Iran (26 9975 new cases, 9% increase)

India (258 121 new cases; 7% decrease)

However, the highest numbers of new deaths in the past week were reported by 

Indonesia (10 492996 new cases; 8% decrease)

Brazil (6100 new cases, 3% decrease) 

Russian Federation (5618 new cases; a 2% increase).

19-JUL-2021 :: So, my Point is this, our Attention span is short and Many Folks seem to feel we are in the final Act of the COVID-19 Play. I would be limit short that particular narrative.

cases have been trending higher for 7 consecutive weeks. 


The Virus remains unresolved. 

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At it's peak India's reported numbers were ~28 per 100,000. (Real numbers probably 5-10 times higher). Florida is at >100 per 100,000 and rising. @VincentRK

"The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function." - Professor Allen Bartlett

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Israel’s worrying fourth wave @FT

Since late last year, Israel has been a laboratory for the world. After winning early access to BioNTech/Pfizer jab supplies in exchange for sharing data on its effects, Israel was the first country to celebrate fully reopening its entire economy after double-jabbing 70 per cent of its population by early April

Now, one of the world’s most-vaccinated nations is among the first to experience an alarming fourth wave of infections — and hospitalisations — and is rushing to give booster shots. The rest of the world should take notice.
New infections in Israel have surged to the highest in six months, with signs that protection against severe disease has fallen significantly for elderly people vaccinated early this year. 

The data has caveats, but the trend is clear: six to eight months after second jabs, immunity starts to wane. 

Most recently, the health ministry found that for over-65s who received a second shot in January, protection against severe illness from the now-dominant Delta variant had fallen as low as 55 per cent, though some analysts question this figure.
The government also estimated recently that the vaccine’s effectiveness in stopping new infections among everyone who received second jabs in January had dropped sharply. 

It remained 82 per cent effective, however, in preventing severe illness, and 86 per cent effective in stopping hospitalisations.
While the unjabbed remain five to six times as likely to end up seriously ill, 90 per cent of Israel’s new infections are among relatively highly-vaccinated over-50s. 

Health officials have warned that, at current rates, at least 5,000 people would need hospital beds by early September, half with severe medical needs — twice as many as Israel is equipped to handle. 

Israel has started offering over-60s, and soon over-50s, a third shot. If this proves ineffective, the government has warned that a new lockdown may be unavoidable.
Israel’s case may reflect a particular combination of factors, and may not be exactly replicated elsewhere. It used almost exclusively Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine, with three-week intervals between jabs. 

Immunity from the Oxford/AstraZeneca or Moderna jabs may prove longer-lasting. 

Several countries, like the UK, extended the gap between doses to 12 weeks — so second jabs were received later. 

Not all followed a strict policy of inoculating the eldest first.
But Israel’s experience still has implications. Until more is known about the durability of protection from different jabs, it suggests even highly-vaccinated countries should retain some preventive measures, such as mask-wearing in public places.
It also signals booster programmes, though long expected, may need to be relatively frequent and large-scale, unless the virus burns itself out. 

In the US, where the Delta variant has also surged in the past month, the Biden administration has decided to recommend booster shots eight months after a second shot — in part after looking at the Israeli data. It is preparing to offer them from next month.
This raises difficult questions about whether scarce vaccines should be used to extend immunity for rich populations, rather than directed to developing countries which remain largely unprotected. 

Yet it would be wrong to undermine all the costly progress made in the developed world, requiring new lockdowns and endangering the global economic recovery — which would have harmful knock-on effects for lower-income countries in other ways.
All this does add yet more urgency, however, to the need to step up production — including within the developing world. 

The biggest lesson of the vaccine rollout in Israel and elsewhere is that the world simply cannot have enough.

And the belief in Vaccine Efficacy is now bumping at euphoric levels. Folks I followed on Twitter for their epidemiological excellence now simply recite Vaccine / Inoculation data like a liturgy.

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Israel data showing the decay of vaccine efficacy over time. Y-axis is cases per 1000 from July 7 to Aug 10, for unvaccinated, and for people vaccinated at different times @segal_eran

19-JUL-2021 :: So, my Point is this, our Attention span is short and Many Folks seem to feel we are in the final Act of the COVID-19 Play. I would be limit short that particular narrative.

Gaza sees a spike in coronavirus cases today, with 522 tests of 2080 coming back positive (25%). @boxerman1


The percentage is likely due to low testing, but the rising trend (2,966 active cases, 3x the number of cases on August 1st) as Gazans go back to school has worried health officials.

08-MAR-2021 the ultra hyperconnectedness of the c21st World. 

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As Israel begins offering COVID booster shots & all night vaccine sites, COVID spikes again across Palestine. @Yara_M_Asi

Aside from flouting its legal obligations, Israel can’t escape the pandemic while leaving Palestinians unvaccinated. In a way, a microcosm of global vaccine disparities.

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B.1.621… to keep an eye on. @DGBassani

28-MAR-2021  we are seeing a sustained acceleration in mutant viruses.

Each successive variant has proven to be slightly more vaccine-evading than the last. @yaneerbaryam

“The variants are like a thoroughbred and our vaccines are like a workhorse,” noted evolutionary biologist Sally Otto.

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B.1.621 Doubled in last week of data. @DGBassani

"The greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function." - Professor Allen Bartlett

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"The Climate Has a Gun." letter by @MichaelEMann via @WSJOpinion
Food, Climate & Agriculture

In “Climate Change Brings a Flood of Hyperbole” (op-ed, Aug. 11), Steven Koonin put himself in the unenviable position of playing down climate change precisely while we are experiencing unprecedented heat waves, storms, fires, droughts, and floods that exceed model-based expectations.
Mr. Koonin claims that regional projections are “meant to scare people.” But the paper he cites for support addresses the “unfolding of what may become catastrophic changes to Earth’s climate” and argues that “being able to anticipate what would otherwise be surprises in extreme weather and climate variations” requires better models. 

In other words, our current models cannot rule out a catastrophic future.
Model uncertainty is two-edged. If we’d been lucky, we’d be discovering that we overestimated the danger. But all indicators suggest the opposite. 

Those who dismiss climate risk often appeal to uncertainty, but they have it backward. 

Climate uncertainty is like not knowing how many shots Dirty Harry fired from his .44-caliber Magnum. 

Now that it’s pointed at our head, it’s dawning on us that we’ve probably miscalculated. 

By the time we’re sure, it’s too late. We’ve got to ask ourselves one question: Do we feel lucky? Well, do we?

In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. #IPCC #ClimateChange

Lorenz wrote:
"At one point I decided to repeat some of the computations in order to examine what was happening in greater detail. I stopped the computer, typed in a line of numbers that it had printed out a while earlier, and set it running again. I went down the hall for a cup of coffee and returned after about an hour, during which time the computer had simulated about two months of weather. The numbers being printed were nothing like the old ones. I immediately suspected a weak vacuum tube or some other computer trouble, which was not uncommon, but before calling for service I decided to see just where the mistake had occurred, knowing that this could speed up the servicing process. Instead of a sudden break, I found that the new values at first repeated the old ones, but soon afterward differed by one and then several units in the last decimal place, and then began to differ in the next to the last place and then in the place before that. In fact, the differences more or less steadily doubled in size every four days or so, until all resemblance with the original output disappeared somewhere in the second month. This was enough to tell me what had happened: the numbers that I had typed in were not the exact original numbers, but were the rounded-off values that had appeared in the original printout. The initial round-off errors were the culprits; they were steadily amplifying until they dominated the solution." (E. N. Lorenz, The Essence of Chaos, U. Washington Press, Seattle (1993), page 134)[7]
Elsewhere he stated:
One meteorologist remarked that if the theory were correct, one flap of a sea gull's wings would be enough to alter the course of the weather forever. The controversy has not yet been settled, but the most recent evidence seems to favor the sea gulls.

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23-NOV 2015 I cannot help feeling we are like frogs in boiling water. We have created massive interference in the "cosmic tuning" phenomenon #IPCC #ClimateChange

In this book, Martin Rees puts forward six equations which govern our universe, a universe so big that we are like a grain of sand on a beach. The mathematics of these equations is so miraculous that Rees speaks to a “cosmic tuning” phenomenon.
For example; Ω ≈ 0.3: the ratio of the actual density of the universe to the critical (minimum) density required for the universe to eventually collapse under its gravity. Ω determines the ultimate fate of the universe. 

If Ω is greater than one, the universe will experience a big crunch. If Ω is less than one, the universe will expand forever.

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United States consumer confidence and comfort index point to peak growth already behind us. @dlacalle_IA
World Of Finance

09-MAY-2021 The Lotos-eaters

The Consensus View appears to be that the Global economy is going to accelerate big time and that its going to BOOM!  I beg to differ

Given the volume of money Printing and the extraordinary stimulus I have to say that the US Recovery is actually really weak and I believe it will be very short lived and the Penny will drop soon with the Bond Market and the Shorts will be forced to cover.

I remain very bullish Long term G7 Bonds. 

09-MAY-2021 ::  The Lotos-eaters However, I am resetting my target Yield to 1.25% now.


I believe we are now headed to < than 1% $TNX

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The long view: US10YR Yields @MichaelGoodwell
World Of Finance

09-MAY-2021 The Lotos-eaters

19-JUL-2021 :: limit long the US Ultra Bond because I recall Japan and the words of that iconic Eagles song ''Hotel California''

Mirrors On The Ceiling The Pink champagne on ice

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It's because of the dual nature of 1) pinning the front end, and 2) the cash deluge creating *downward* pressure on front end rates were the pin to be released. @coloradotravis
World Of Finance

Either they continue the pinning, or they don't. If they pull the pin (highly unlikely), the curve collapses.

And if they don't pull the pin, the resulting stability of the carry trade along the curve incrementally flattens the curve as idle cash seeks the freely available carry from buying and holding longer durations to (well... more like toward) maturity. @coloradotravis

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies

Euro 1.1680
Dollar Index 93.443
Japan Yen 109.83
Swiss Franc 0.9170
Pound 1.3695
Aussie 0.7167
India Rupee 74.36
South Korea Won 1177.09
Brazil Real 5.38
Egypt Pound 15.71
South Africa Rand 15.1411

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.@WHO Weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 - 17 August 2021 African Region

African Region
This week, the data for the African Region is incomplete due to reporting delays and trends should be interpreted with caution until the missing data has been incorporated. 

The Region reported just over 139 000 new cases and over 3900 new deaths. 

The overall decrease in weekly cases reported in the region since the middle of July has been largely driven by declines observed in South Africa. 

In contrast, many other countries in the region continue to report increases in case incidence. 

For mortality, the trend in the region is largely driven by a decline in new weekly deaths reported by a majority of the countries in the Region, including Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe among others. 

This decrease in overall weekly mortality could be partly due to the lack of reporting of regional data for 15 August.
The highest numbers of new cases were reported from 

South Africa (58 939 new cases; 99.4 new cases per 100 000 population; 22% decrease)

Botswana (14 184 new cases; 603.2 new cases per 100 000; 11% decrease)

Kenya (7685 new cases; 14.3 new cases per 100 000; 2% decrease).

The highest numbers of new deaths were reported from 

South Africa (2008 new deaths; 3.4 new deaths per 100 000 population; 23% decrease)

Botswana (269 new deaths; 11.4 new deaths per 100 000; 99% increase)

Zimbabwe (247 new deaths; 1.7 new deaths per 100 000; 16% decrease)

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Official Welcoming Ceremony for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali of Ethiopia @trpresidency

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.

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Any Early Warning System would be warning a Tsunami is coming [Zambia is a positive Tsunami]

10-JUN-2019 :: Hugh Masakela said "I want to be there when the People start to turn it around"

14-OCT-2019 ::The Canary in the Coal Mine is Zambia

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Hakainde Hichilema, has to forge a deal with creditors after last year’s default. Getting China to the table won’t be easy. @edwardcropley

Lifting Beijing’s veil of secrecy by revealing Lusaka’s loans would remove the biggest barrier, and set a good precedent.

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.@KCBGroup reports HY 2021 EPS +60.03%Earnings here
N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment

Par Value:                  1/-
Closing Price:           49.90
Total Shares Issued:          3087443344.00
Market Capitalization:        154,063,422,866
EPS:             6.1
PE:                 8.180

KCB Group consolidated for the 6 month period ended 30th June 2021

HY Total Assets 1.022153011 Trillion versus 953.071512b +7.248% 

HY Loans and Advances to Customers [Net] 606.967409b versus 559.884343b +8.409% 

HY Kenya Government Securities [Held at amortized cost] 106.067077b versus 85.625298b

HY Kenya Government Securities Fair value through OCI 89.011282b versus 106.351164b

HY Customer Deposits 786.035101b versus 758.241255b

HY Total Interest Income 47.117996b versus 41.382127b

HY Total interest expenses 10.701736b versus 10.312539b

HY Net Interest Income 36.416260b versus 31.069588b +17.2%

HY Total Other Operating Income 14.793637b versus 13.963610b

HY Total Operating Income 51.209897b versus 45.033198b

HY Loan Loss Provision 6.5834174b versus 11.027244b

HY Staff Costs 12.254755b versus 10.098346b 

HY Total Other Operating Expenses 29.294245b versus 32.208440b

HY Profit before Tax and exceptional Items 21.915652b versus 12.824758b

HY Profit and after Tax 15.300915b versus 7.557605b +102% 

HY EPS 8.53 versus 5.33 +60.03% 

HY Gross NPLs 95.732747b versus 83.884432b

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@KCBGroup H1 2021 vs H1 2020: @MwangoCapital
N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment

Customer deposits up 3.7%
Loan book up 8.4%
Total assets Ksh 1.02T
Total interest income up 13.9%
Net interest income up 17.2%
Provisions down 40.3%
Total opex down 9%
PBT up 70.9%
PAT up 101.9%
EPS Ksh 8.53 [2020:  5.33]
No interim dividend


Strong results. 

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Sanlam Kenya Plc reports H1. 2021 EPS [2.09] Earnings here
N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment

Par Value:                  5/-
Closing Price:           11.10
Total Shares Issued:          144000000.00
Market Capitalization:        1,598,400,000
EPS:             0.79
PE:                 14.051

SANLAM Kenya reports HY Earnings through 30th June 2021 versus 6 months through 30th June 2020

HY Gross written Premium 5.921866b versus 4.276831b

HY Net Earned Premium 4.398794b versus 3.014371b

HY Investment and Other Income 1.535346b versus 1.244604b

HY Total Income 5.934140b versus 4.258975b

HY Net Claims and Policyholder benefits [4.083338b] versus [2.475887b]

HY Operating and other expenses [1.793136b] versus [1.639060b]

HY Finance Costs [280.621m] versus [280.067m]

HY Total Benefits claims and other expenses [6.157095b] versus [4.395014b]

HY [Loss] after Tax [291.857m] versus [99.140m]

HY EPS [2.09] versus [0.83]


Big Increase in HY Net Claims and Policyholder benefits [4.083338b] versus [2.475887b]


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@Kakuzi_Plc H1 key notes: @MwangoCapital
N.S.E Equities - Agricultural

- Significant drop in avocados production expected
- Blueberry sales doing well
- Downward pressure in avocado prices
- Tea production returns haven't improved
- Timber products strong

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by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
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August 2021

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