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Author Topic: How Well Can You Prognosticate World Events?
Kent
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Is Chavez going to see an increase or decrease in power? Will the $2billion dollars a day sale of oil to Saudis increase security in the gulf or decrease it? Will the US see a stabilizing in its economy or a continued weakening? Is Brazil really going to be energy independent? What is up with Russia, North Korea, China, Iran, etc.?

These are questions addressed by Stratfor, a private geopolitical intelligence firm, in their third quarterly forecast. Businesses pay them millions of dollars to find out how world events may influence investments. A summary report is posted online (for now) for your enjoyment. There are literally dozens of potential topics for other threads in the assesments provided in this report.

I provide this link as a public service to you, gentle poster, and wish you a happy third quarter.

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Daruma28
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I predict within 10 years the one-world socialists will propose an American Union and replace the US dollar with the "Amero." The UN will become the de facto World Government.

The borders between the US, Canada and Mexico will become footnotes in history as the US continues it's inexorable slide towards multi-cultural, one-world integration. Slowly but surely our national identity is being assimilated.

Our sovereignty has already been compromised past the point of no-return, the Constitution is abrogated to the point of meaninglessness and both political parties are merely bit players in the Hegelian dialectical process of subverting the once great Republic of the USofA into a Democratic Socialist nation-state under the jackboot of the totalitarian New World Order.

Pass me a tinfoil hat...because after some extensive reading and reflection, I'm now a firm believer in the conspiracy theory.

[ July 11, 2008, 03:52 PM: Message edited by: Daruma28 ]

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scifibum
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Shouldn't you be a bit more prudent if you firmly believe all that? "Let me be the first to welcome our new overlords."
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DonaldD
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I can procrastinate as well as anybody here
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Kent
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I should have retitled the topic "How well can you prognosticate world events for the next three months" and that way we can see how good you are.
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DonaldD
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Three months? Heck, I could procrastinate for six months, no problem.
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Jesse
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Socialist. uh-huh.


This brave new world that has such people in it. [Smile]

The Nation State is rapidly becoming old-hat, but it's not Socialism that's replacing it.

Welcome to the Corporate Oligarchy.

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TheSteelenGeneral
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quote:
Originally posted by DonaldD:
I can procrastinate as well as anybody here

Coming here IS procrastinating ... [Wink]
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TheSteelenGeneral
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quote:
Originally posted by Jesse:
Socialist. uh-huh.
This brave new world that has such people in it. [Smile]
The Nation State is rapidly becoming old-hat, but it's not Socialism that's replacing it.
Welcome to the Corporate Oligarchy.

Did you read Kim S. Robinson's Red Mars, Blue Mars, & Green Mars? He does a very good job of describing a Corporate Oligarchic world. Also See Mutant Chronicles.

Still, the monopoly of violence is still firmly with the states.

taking a look at the best (supposedly) Prognosticatators sf-writers, they all more or less missed or misinterpreted the internet, to it's full extent. And I'm talking about pre-William Gibson, since predicting it around his time wouldn't be a great feat. for example OSC grossly overestimated the power of the chat groups/forums etc.

my marketing prof said that Prognosticating is like telling a driver where to go while looking out the back window. It's hard.

Heinlein scored a good one with his 'belt phones', way back in the fifties!

I think John Brunner in Stand on Zanzibar was pretty good, and that was written in the 60s.

Wars over resources are gonna become more prevalent, and Peak oil is a reality. I guess we're still in denial about that one.

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RickyB
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"Still, the monopoly of violence is still firmly with the states."

Och aye, laddie? <cough> <Bechtel> <cough> <blackwater>

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TheSteelenGeneral
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You almost seem to have a point, but blackwater doesn't really initiate violent actions AGAINST a governement, without being asked to by another.

Of course the whole military-industrial complex makes it unclear where business begins and govt end, but that is different.
There aren't companies with private army's in the way that countries have armies.

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Viking_Longship
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I think the American people are going to rebel against a united North America strongly enough that we retain our soverienty in spite of the neo-cons and their counteparts on the left. I think the pendulem is going to swing back away from economic globalism as the gulf Arabs and the petro-traitors from Texas have overplayed their hand.
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Rallan
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:
I predict within 10 years the one-world socialists will propose an American Union and replace the US dollar with the "Amero." The UN will become the de facto World Government.

Damn dude, you seriously gotta lay off the kool-aid. America getting incorporated into a socialist continent-spanning mirror of the EU? Blue helmets ruling the world? Truly, 'tis the lulz.

It took the European Economic Community half a century to turn into the European Community, get a membership of more than just a smattering of western bloc states, remove some but by no means all trade barriers within the community, transform into the European Union, implement a common currency, establish a virtually powerless parliament (seriously, their parliament is so impressive I didn't even know they had one until I decided to start reading up on the EU), and set up a court that can't do much except rule on treaty obligations. Seriously, the Eurovision Song Contest has done a more impressive job of absorbing Europe and expanding its powers and jurisdiction than the European Union has.

And you expect what? That within ten years NAFTA is gonna absorb central america and the carribean and drag the United States kicking and screaming into a commie pinko liberal dystopia whether it wants to join or not? And that at the same time, the United Nations will magically find the authority, the political will, and the ability to turn into the malevolent One World Government that all the wingnuts in bunkers in Minnesota think it is?

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TomDavidson
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quote:
I predict within 10 years the one-world socialists will propose an American Union and replace the US dollar with the "Amero." The UN will become the de facto World Government.
I'll put ten dollars up against single Amero that you're wrong. [Smile]
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jimskater
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If we assume a vast Corporate/Oligarchic conspiracy, I don't think we'll see a continent wide nation state. Quebec and the resource poor regions of Mexico would be probably be excluded from the North American Union. There is, however, the high probability (approaching certainty?) of those regions being treated as vassal states and a source of cheap labor.
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jimskater
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My prediction for the next six months: there will be an election in the US, the results of which will be unpopular with at least 20% of the country.

[Wink]

[ July 14, 2008, 02:37 AM: Message edited by: jimskater ]

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Viking_Longship
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Daruma isn't entirely off base as to the North American Union
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amero
I just don't think the American people are going to accept it.

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Mynnion
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Which Americans? Maybe we should invade Alberta for the oil. Or maybe Venesula first. We would waste less fuel than sending our troops to Iran.
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Viking_Longship
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I meant citizens of the US but I don't think the Canadians and probably not even the Mexicans are going to go for it.
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Kent
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I love it! A thread that is getting plenty of posts without a single person referencing (or demonstrating they have read) the linked article. Man, I love Ornery!
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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by Kent:
I love it! A thread that is getting plenty of posts without a single person referencing (or demonstrating they have read) the linked article. Man, I love Ornery!

It's SOP. In a humorous turnaround, I read the article but did not post. I didn't read the whole thing though - just the part about Venezuela since you mentioned it specifically and it was more interesting to me at the moment.

I'll give my prediction there - Chavez will continue to increase his power base and we will see the long dark slide into communism and it's attendant decline in standard of living as well as overall quality of life. I had thought he could ride the wave of high oil prices but he's screwing even that up:
quote:
... making Venezuela unique among oil exporters as the only one getting poorer with global crude prices at historic highs.
I think he'll become more and more unpopular but with the power he's amassed (he rules by decree now) there's nothing that can be done and, in the end, nobody will care anyway:
quote:
... it would be logical for foreign states hostile to Chavez to take a swipe at him, or for domestic opposition to rally against him, but no one with the capability to hurt Chavez has a deep enough interest to take any dramatic steps ...
Gonna be tough to be a Venezuelan for the next generation or so unless a drop in oil prices can break the bank AND someone cares enough to force Chavez out. Well, people get the government they deserve ...
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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by TomDavidson:
quote:
I predict within 10 years the one-world socialists will propose an American Union and replace the US dollar with the "Amero." The UN will become the de facto World Government.
I'll put ten dollars up against single Amero that you're wrong. [Smile]
I would gladly lose that bet. [Wink]

Perhaps 10 years is a bit short...but I think I see the writing on the wall quite clearly.

We ARE as a society and a country moving more and more towards a multi-cultural, globally focused, socialist-minded people, and this has been done by design.

The US was never designed to be a democracy.

The Federal Government was never supposed to accrue power or get involved in so many areas of our lives as it has.

And Socialism? Oh, it's already been accepted en masse. When the mere suggestion of privatizing a small percentage of SOCIAL Security is met with cries of outrage and populist opposition, it's apparent to me that we are already far gone. Jesse, I do believe we are ALREADY living under a Corporate Oligarchy - and socialism and it's mass acceptance is but one tool they use to manipulate the masses.

It is these super-wealthy elitists that are the proverbial Wizard behind the curtain, pulling the levers and controlling so many different facets of society...all enabled by the grand distraction that is the two-party political system of this country.

We as a society value the "security" of a nanny-state Government over the freedom and liberty that was once allowed to exist under our former Representative Republic.

Rallan - Oh how I wish I were simply delusional from drinking the kool-aid.... [Exploding]

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jasonr
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quote:
for example OSC grossly overestimated the power of the chat groups/forums etc.
Give it time. I predict that within 1 generation, chat rooms and forums will be at or near the level of influence predicted by OSC.
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scifibum
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quote:
Originally posted by jasonr:
quote:
for example OSC grossly overestimated the power of the chat groups/forums etc.
Give it time. I predict that within 1 generation, chat rooms and forums will be at or near the level of influence predicted by OSC.
How so? Collectively they will make up a very large chunk of the overall influence on people's opinions. However, OSC envisioned that just a few people would exert this level of influence across the entire web. It's hard to imagine any pundit so brilliant as to hold sway over a significant percentage of the overall Internet audience, when every popular website, including blogs, attracts immediate and sustained imitation.

I just don't see a way for a Locke and a Demosthenes to emerge from the fray. Instead there will be a million of each, with the influence divided accordingly.

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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
I just don't see a way for a Locke and a Demosthenes to emerge from the fray. Instead there will be a million of each, with the influence divided accordingly.

Imagine if my job (or really anyone here) was to "live in" this forum and 4-5 others. That's relatively easy to do, handle 4-5 forums. Now imagine a political party or PAC or Soros hiring about 20 guys like me (or 50 or 100) and paying us all enough that we could do it full time and make a reasonable living. Cover maybe the top 50-100 forums and/or blogs and you could provide around the clock coverage.

No it won't be one single person doing all the work but it could quite easily be a single person or group doing all the coordinating of message and strategic delivery with subgroups coordinating the tactical delivery. The message *would* go out and probably be cheaper and more effective than "traditional" mediums.

How many of you have friends and/or relatives that know you're politically engaged and look to you for political advice and information? You talk to them and tell them the way it "really" is - I bet more than a few of you fall into this category. A coordinated effort like the above could be designed to feed into you and people like you. A word of mouth campaign with information being delivered from the most trusted sources, sounds pretty achievable.

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G2
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quote:
Originally posted by TheSteelenGeneral:
There aren't companies with private army's in the way that countries have armies.

You're quite wrong about that. Last year Russian Parliament approved the creation of private armies for 2 of it's largest energy companies - Gazprom and Transneft. Although Transneft is the state oil pipeline company, making it a little murky. Gazprom, IIRC, is completely private and Russia's interior ministry supplies Gazprom with guns from the state armory.

They usually call these things "private security" or some other euphemism and typically restrict easily carried weapons (usually handguns and automatic weapons) but notable exceptions do exist. Mecernary companies like Blackwater or any of the hundreds of others out there are not restricted to working for governments anyway - they hire out to whoever pays the bills. Executive Outcomes, when it was still around, was hired by an oil company once, an American one I believe for some work in Angola.

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RickyB
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"but blackwater doesn't really initiate violent actions AGAINST a governement, without being asked to by another."

Heretofore. You speak as tho significant international action by either mercenaries or US forces on behalf of explicit business interests is unprecedented in US history, let alone unimaginable in the future.

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RickyB
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Executive Outcomes kicked ass! Those guys were ***good***. Of course, the UN worms (especially the frog eating variety) pissed away all their brilliant gains in West Africa, but that is hardly their fault.
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RickyB
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"It's hard to imagine any pundit so brilliant as to hold sway over a significant percentage of the overall Internet audience, when every popular website, including blogs, attracts immediate and sustained imitation."

You have Kos, Atrios, Captain Ed, and Malkin (had to include her to balance the boat. Not mentioning the freak). Anyway, you have these people holding amazing influence for private people writing from home, and they're nowhere near as brilliant as Demosthenes OR Locke [Smile]

Sure it could happen.

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Animist
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Daruma --

What you have to say is very interesting/bewildering. I agree with you about this:

quote:
It is these super-wealthy elitists that are the proverbial Wizard behind the curtain, pulling the levers and controlling so many different facets of society...all enabled by the grand distraction that is the two-party political system of this country.

We as a society value the "security" of a nanny-state Government over the freedom and liberty that was once allowed to exist under our former Representative Republic.

But -- and I'm really seriously confused about this -- could you please explain to me how this=Socialism?
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Rallan
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quote:
Originally posted by Daruma28:

Rallan - Oh how I wish I were simply delusional from drinking the kool-aid.... [Exploding]

You're pushing a "global state" conspiracy theory which assumes that in ten years' time the United Nations will have transformed into an insidious New World Order, when anyone with an ounce of common sense can see that if the United Nations is lucky it might barely be able (with a little help) to finally find its own butt with a map and a flashlight in that time. And that's assuming that the rise of regional economic and defense cooperative groups like the European Union and the African Union don't render the UN obsolete in the meanwhile.

[ July 15, 2008, 02:29 AM: Message edited by: Rallan ]

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Viking_Longship
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I found the globally influential anonymous blogger notion highly implausible. I think Scifibum is right. It's hard to build a cult of personality if noone ever sees your face.
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vulture
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
quote:
TheSteelenGeneral wrote:
but blackwater doesn't really initiate violent actions AGAINST a governement, without being asked to by another.

Heretofore. You speak as tho significant international action by either mercenaries or US forces on behalf of explicit business interests is unprecedented in US history, let alone unimaginable in the future.
I'd point out that the British mercenary (and former SAS officer) Simon Mann has just been sentenced to 34 years in prison in Equitorial Guinea for being part of a plot to overthrow the government there. They were funded by, amongst others, Mark Thatcher (son of former British PM Maggie) - although he claimed he thought he was funding an air ambulance. Exactly who was behind the plot is unknown (or at least, unproven and probably libellous to say) it seems that although various governments (British, American and others) had agreed to look the other way, the whole affair was privately funded and apparently aimed at Equitorial Guineas large oil reserves which certain individuals hoped to get rich from by installing a puppet regime in the country.

I believe Mann named some of the backers in the trial, but also said there were people behind those whose identity he didn't know.

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TheSteelenGeneral
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quote:
Originally posted by G2:
Gazprom, IIRC, is completely private and

HA HA HA HA! [Smile] [Smile] [Smile] [Smile]

"Russia's interior ministry supplies Gazprom with guns from the state armory."

... and not mentioning the whole Yukos staged show.

Gazprom is as completely private as Putin is completely out of power ...

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TheSteelenGeneral
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
quote:
TheSteelenGeneral wrote:
but blackwater doesn't really initiate violent actions AGAINST a governement, without being asked to by another.

Heretofore. You speak as tho significant international action by either mercenaries or US forces on behalf of explicit business interests is unprecedented in US history, let alone unimaginable in the future.
I mentioned the military industrial complex. I was sick for a day when i saw my first ads for F-16's in a armsdealer magazine. They were marketed like soap: "Now!!! New and improved!! Better than the F5! And BATTLE PROVEN by the Israeli army!!"

OK, tangent, associations. etc. my main point:
it's not as if a corporation decides to wage war against another corporation openly using armies, or armed groups, large-scale. Intertwined, yes they are, but there's always some form of govt behind it.

The whole Thatcher Guinea thing points to some Western govt involvement at some level.

There was a time that Shell might've violently pushed, let's say Norway out of oil fields or whatever, but that time is kinda gone. Gazprom might do it, but that would be statebacked.

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TheSteelenGeneral
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quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"It's hard to imagine any pundit so brilliant as to hold sway over a significant percentage of the overall Internet audience, when every popular website, including blogs, attracts immediate and sustained imitation."

You have Kos, Atrios, Captain Ed, and Malkin (had to include her to balance the boat.

never even heard of atrios and captain ed.
the thing about the internet and present day media is that it's completely balkanized. it's fragmented,
when we used to go to school, everybody would talk about that one show we saw, and those that missed it would be really pissed. not no more.

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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by Animist:
Daruma --

What you have to say is very interesting/bewildering. I agree with you about this:

quote:
It is these super-wealthy elitists that are the proverbial Wizard behind the curtain, pulling the levers and controlling so many different facets of society...all enabled by the grand distraction that is the two-party political system of this country.

We as a society value the "security" of a nanny-state Government over the freedom and liberty that was once allowed to exist under our former Representative Republic.

But -- and I'm really seriously confused about this -- could you please explain to me how this=Socialism?
Socialism, at it's core, is the method to inculcate dependency upon authority...to breed compliance amongst the masses.

It is the general force behind such things as a mindset that looks to the central authority i.e. - government - that tells you what kind of light bulb you can use, what kind of toilet bowl you can have in your house, etc.

Rallan - I am not pushing anything. I merely have read a lot and taken a step back at the "big picture" and have come to the conclusion that I have. I do not seek to convince anyone, I merely participate in this discussion to see if anyone else might have arrived at the same conclusions I have.

You talk about the incompetence of the UN, and I say to you that the UN need not be competent or efficient to achieve the goals of subsuming US sovereignty into a one world entity. The UN is just another front...a means of changing the mainstream consciousness of the people to think of themselves as global citizens, rather than national sovereigns of our respective Nation-States. In essence, the UN is nothing more than a front - a facade

As I stated earlier, perhaps 10 years are too quick of a timeline....than again, perhaps not.

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quote:
Originally posted by TheSteelenGeneral:
quote:
Originally posted by G2:
Gazprom, IIRC, is completely private and

HA HA HA HA! [Smile] [Smile] [Smile] [Smile]

"Russia's interior ministry supplies Gazprom with guns from the state armory."

... and not mentioning the whole Yukos staged show.

Gazprom is as completely private as Putin is completely out of power ...

Perhaps I don't recall correctly but your, apparently constant, desire to act like a jerk doesn't disprove my recollection. I know the privatization process was started in the early 90's but I don't track that company as hard as it appears you do. How much is owned by the Russian government now?

[ July 16, 2008, 10:31 AM: Message edited by: G2 ]

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TheSteelenGeneral
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whatever dude. If you just pick up a decent paper once in a while you have read that Gazprom is fully controlled by the Russian govt. At least, the UK govt, Shell, BP are saying that, so I take their word for it.

And if my laughing at your uninformed completely false statements make me a jerk, expect more in the future. It's really a ridiculous statement to make, "gazprom a private company" .... Wow.

I mean, early 90s? Oh you mean when YELTSIN was still president? Aha ....

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Daruma,
I too find proscribing the use of energy saving light bulbs and water saving toilets hard evidence that the usa is turning socialist.

I mean, what were those Aussie commie bastards thinking??

http://www.upd8.org.uk/activity/205/Australian-light-bulb-ban.html

And, as everyone knows, everything Australian will eventually trickle down to the usa ... so ...

Just out of sheer curiosity, daruma2* has there ever been, or will there ever be, a non-socialist govt in any nation on this planet, in your humble opinion?

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