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Monday, August 12, 2013

Russia to Soon Float Out 2 New ‘Black Hole’ Submarines

Russia to Soon Float Out 2 New ‘Black Hole’ Submarines

ST. PETERSBURG, August 12 (RIA Novosti) – The third of six new “black hole” submarines that Russia is making for the Vietnamese navy will be floated out later this month, the shipbuilder said Monday, adding that the first of another six, for Russia’s own Black Sea Fleet, would be floated out in November.

The Varshavyanka-class (Project 636M) diesel-electric subs, dubbed by the US Navy as “black holes in the ocean” because they are nearly undetectable when submerged, are primarily designed for anti-shipping and anti-submarine missions in relatively shallow waters.

The first of the submarines, which completed its 100-day sea trials last month and for which a Vietnamese crew has been training since April, is expected to be delivered to that country in November, according to the manufacturer, Admiralty Shipyards.

Vietnam ordered the six submarines in 2009, counterbalancing China’s expanding maritime influence in the region. That contract, which also stipulated the training of Vietnamese crews in Russia, was reportedly worth $2 billion.

The Varshavyanka class is an improvement on the Kilo, with more advanced stealth technology and an extended combat range. Construction of the first Varshavyanka-class sub for the Black Sea Fleet, a vessel named the Novorossiisk, began in 2010 and has been completed ahead of schedule, the shipbuilder said.

The submarines, which feature 533-milimeter torpedo tubes and are armed with torpedoes, mines and Kalibr 3M54 (NATO SS-N-27 Sizzler) cruise missiles, displace 3,100 tons, reach speeds of 20 knots, can dive to 300 meters and carry crews of 52 people.

RIA Novosti

The pill that texts the doctor - from inside your body

According to the World Health Organisation around 50% of us fail to take medicines correctly, while over 50% of drugs are prescribed, dispensed or sold inappropriately.

Not only can this have horrifying consequences for patients, it also costs healthcare providers millions every year.

So technology to help avoid these situations could prove lucrative.

There's tremendous confusion around appropriate use of medicines and how they work”Andrew ThomsonProteus Digital HealthTalk it out

"Human beings aren't robots, and if they're asked to take medicines or do anything that requires very high levels of routine repetition they are going to find that really tough," says Andrew Thomson, chief executive of California-based Proteus Digital Health.

"The biggest burdens in our health system are about chronic disease, and people typically who have some type of chronic disease need to take medicines every day. And they need to take them appropriately.

"And what we know is that most people don't actually do that very well."

So how do you make sure your elderly and forgetful mum is taking her medication regularly?

According to Proteus, by having that tablet text or even tweet you when it hits the stomach.

This isn't science fiction - although the company appropriately enough shares its name with the Proteus, the microscopic vessel that boldly went where none of us have gone before - inside the human body - in the cult 1960s movie Fantastic Voyage.
Small packages: The Proteus ingestible sensor next to a normal drawing pin, to show scale

The key is a tiny ingestible sensor that can be embedded in a tablet. It works like a potato battery.

"If you stick a bit of copper and a bit of magnesium in a potato and you wire it up you can power a lightbulb. It's a simple bit of chemistry that says two dissimilar metals in an ionic solution create an electrical charge," says Mr Thomson.

"What we have done is to take two absolutely required dietary minerals, one is copper and one is magnesium, and put them on a grain of sand that's less than a millimetre square in a way that means that when we combine it with a drug, when you swallow it you become a potato."

The ionic fluid is stomach acid. Enough voltage is created to power the sensor, which communicates with a small plaster-shaped patch worn by the patient, which also tracks vital signs, movement and sleep.

The patch in turn sends all of this data to an application which lives in the cloud. It can be accessed from a smartphone, tablet or PC, and set to send an alert to family, caregivers or healthcare professionals to say the pills have been swallowed.

This is particularly important where the timing is crucial or where missing a few doses means the drug won't work anymore.
The band aid shaped patch worn by the patient, which communicates with the Helius app shown on the tablet

"Effectively when you swallow one of our digital drugs it will say, Hello I'm here, I'm Novartis, I'm Diovan, 1.2mg, I'm from plant number 76, I'm batch number 12 and I'm pill number 2." says Mr Thomson.

The application can also track the drug's effects - whether it's been prescribed at the right dosage, or if it simply isn't working.

The technology is being piloted in the UK at High Street chain Lloyds Pharmacy. Patients receive a labelled dosage tray, with an extra pill that contains the sensor. This will record the time each dose is taken, while the tracking patch builds up a picture of their health and movements.

"If you think about a hypertension patient who doesn't take their medicines, the long term result of that will be things like a stroke or a heart attack which may cost the health system tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars," says Mr Thomson.

"And the cost of the medicines is 30p a month. One of the most important things to understand here is that helping people appropriately use medicines has the potential to save hundreds of millions of pounds."

From BBC

Why Are So Many People Choosing To Leave The United States Permanently?

Have things gotten so bad that it is time to leave the United States for good?  That is a question that a lot of Americans are dealing with these days, and an increasing number of them are choosing to leave the country of their birth permanently.  Some are doing it for tax reasons, some are doing it because they believe the future is brighter elsewhere, and others are doing it because they are very distressed about the direction that America is heading and they don't see any hope for a turnaround any time soon.  Personally, I have several friends and contacts that regard themselves as "preppers" that have decided that the United States is too far gone to recover.  They have moved their families out of the country and they never plan to return.  As this nation continues to head down the very troubled road that it is currently on, this trend is probably only going to accelerate even more.
In fact, some Americans are even going so far as to renounce their citizenship when they leave.  This represents only a small percentage of those that are leaving the country, but as Bloomberg recently reported, the number of Americans that renounced their citizenship in the second quarter of 2013 was six times larger than the number that renounced their citizenship in the second quarter of last year...
Americans renouncing U.S. citizenship surged sixfold in the second quarter from a year earlier as the government prepares to introduce tougher asset-disclosure rules.
Expatriates giving up their nationality at U.S. embassies climbed to 1,131 in the three months through June from 189 in the year-earlier period, according to Federal Register figures published today.
Renouncing the country of your birth is not an easy thing to do.  From the moment that we come into this world, those of us born in this country are trained to think of ourselves as "Americans".  The following is an excerpt from a recent article by Simon Black of the Sovereign Man blog...
It doesn’t matter where you’re from– the United States, Sweden, New Zealand, or Venezuela… many people all over the world are inculcated from birth with a sense that their country is ‘better’ than all the others.
We grow up with the songs, the flag waving, and the parades until the concept of motherland becomes deeply rooted in our emotional cores.
Not to mention, when so many of our friends and neighbors unquestionably fall in line, it’s a powerful social reinforcement that only strengthens the bond.
We come to view our nationalities rather ironically as a big piece of our core individuality. I am an American. I am a Canadian. I am an Austrian. Instead of– I am a human being.
It has taken decades… centuries even… to reach this point. So the fact that more and more people are making the gut-wrenching decision to ditch their US passports is truly a powerful trend.
Traditionally, the American people have been some of the most patriotic people on the face of the planet.
So why are we now seeing such an increase in the number of people choosing to leave the United States permanently?
Well, the truth is that there are a whole host of reasons why people are losing faith in this country and are deciding to leave...
-The U.S. economy has been steadily declining for many years and that decline now seems to be accelerating.
-We are being taxed into oblivion.
-The quality of the jobs in our economy is rapidly declining.
-The middle class is continually shrinking.
-Poverty is exploding.
-Escalating social decay in our major cities.
-Our culture is rapidly going down the toilet.
-Our health care system has become a complete mess and a giant money making scam.  Obamacare is only going to make things even worse.
-Our politicians are tremendously corrupt, but the same clowns just keep getting sent back to D.C. over and over again.
-Our nation seems to be on a relentless march toward collectivism.
-America is rapidly turning into a "Big Brother" police state that is run by control freaks that seem obsessed with watching, tracking, monitoring and controlling virtually everything that we do.
Of course the list above could go on indefinitely, but hopefully I have made my point.  A whole lot of people out there are absolutely horrified as they watch what is happening to America, and leaving the country for good is increasingly being viewed as a potential option by many.
But as tempting as "going Galt" may seem, please come up with a good plan first.
As one family recently discovered, hopping into a small boat and sailing off into the Pacific Ocean in search of a better life is probably not going to work out too well...
A northern Arizona family that was lost at sea for weeks in an ill-fated attempt to leave the U.S. over what they consider government interference in religion will fly back home Sunday.
Hannah Gastonguay, 26, said Saturday that she and her husband "decided to take a leap of faith and see where God led us" when they took their two small children and her father-in-law and set sail from San Diego for the tiny island nation of Kiribati in May.
But just weeks into their journey, the Gastonguays hit a series of storms that damaged their small boat, leaving them adrift for weeks, unable to make progress. They were eventually picked up by a Venezuelan fishing vessel, transferred to a Japanese cargo ship and taken to Chile where they are resting in a hotel in the port city of San Antonio.
Yes, life in America is definitely going to be extremely challenging in the years ahead, but the grass is not always greener on the other side of the planet either.
There are a whole host of things to consider before you make a permanent move to another country.  The following is an extended excerpt from one of my previous articles...
The following are 10 questions to ask yourself before you decide to move to another country...
Do You Speak The Language?  If Not, How Will You Function?
If you do not speak the language of the country that you are moving to, that can create a huge problem.  Just going to the store and buying some food will become a challenge.  Every interaction that you have with anyone in that society will be strained, and your ability to integrate into the culture around you will be greatly limited.
How Will You Make A Living?
Unless you are independently wealthy, you will need to make money.  In a foreign nation, it may be very difficult for you to find a job - especially one that pays as much as you are accustomed to making in the United States.
Will You Be Okay Without Your Family And Friends?
Being thousands of miles away from all of your family and friends can be extremely difficult.  Will you be okay without them?  And it can be difficult to survive in a foreign culture without any kind of a support system.  Sometimes the people that most successfully move out of the country are those that do it as part of a larger group.
Have You Factored In Weather Patterns And Geological Instability?
As the globe becomes increasingly unstable, weather patterns and natural disasters are going to become a bigger factor in deciding where to live.  For example, right now India is suffering through the worst drought that it has experienced in nearly 50 years.  It would be very difficult to thrive in the middle of such an environment.
Many of those that are encouraging people to "escape from America" are pointing to Chile as an ideal place to relocate to.  But there are thousands of significant earthquakes in Chile each year, and the entire nation lies directly along the "Ring of Fire" which is becoming increasingly unstable.  That is something to keep in mind.
What Will You Do For Medical Care?
If you or someone in your family had a serious medical problem in the United States, you would know what to do.  Yes, our health care system is incredibly messed up, but at least you would know that you could get the care that you needed if an emergency arose.  Would the same be true in a foreign nation?
Are You Moving Into A High Crime Area?
Yes, crime is definitely on the rise in the United States.  But in other areas where many preppers are moving to, crime is even worse.  Mexico and certain areas of Central America are two examples of this.  And in many foreign nations, the police are far more corrupt than they generally are in the United States.
In addition, many other nations have far stricter gun laws than the United States does, so your ability to defend your family may be greatly restricted.
So will your family truly be safe in the nation that you plan to take them to?
Are You Prepared For "Culture Shock"?
Moving to another country can be like moving to a different planet.  After all, they don't call it "culture shock" for nothing.
If you do move to another country, you may quickly find that thousands of little things that you once took for granted in the U.S. are now very different.
And there is a very good chance that many of the "amenities" that you are accustomed to in the U.S. will not be available in a foreign nation and that your standard of living will go down.
So if you are thinking of moving somewhere else, you may want to visit first just to get an idea of what life would be like if you made the move.
What Freedoms and Liberties Will You Lose By Moving?
Yes, our liberties and our freedoms are being rapidly eroded in the United States.  But in many other nations around the world things are much worse.  You may find that there is no such thing as "freedom of speech" or "freedom of religion" in the country that you have decided to move to.
Is There A Possibility That The Country You Plan To Escape To Could Be Involved In A War At Some Point?
We are moving into a time of great geopolitical instability.  If you move right into the middle of a future war zone, you might really regret it.  If you do plan to move, try to find a country that is likely to avoid war for the foreseeable future.
When The Global Economy Collapses, Will You And Your Family Be Okay For Food?
What good will it be to leave the United States if you and your family run out of food?
Today, we are on the verge of a major global food crisis.  Global food reserves are at their lowest level in nearly 40 years, and shifting global weather patterns are certainly not helping things.
And the global elite are rapidly getting more control over the global food supply.  Today, between 75 and 90 percent of all international trade in grain is controlled by just four gigantic multinational food corporations.
Leaving the United States permanently and setting up a new life in another country can be done, but it isn't for the faint of heart.  It takes planning, preparation and lots of hard work.
However, there are lots of people that have done it successfully, including quite a number of people that I know personally.
In the end, you have got to make the decision that is right for you and your family.  Don't let anyone else tell you what to do.
For many, staying in the United States and preparing for the tough years that are coming is the best choice.  For others, getting out of the United States and heading for greener pastures is the right choice.
What about you?
What is your choice?
Economic Collapse


Iran’s supreme leader promises in a newly released audiotape the destruction of Israel and Palestinians’ return to that land.

Fars News Agency, an outlet run by the Revolutionary Guards, last week posted an audiotape of excerpts of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s speeches to Palestinian officials and others with a title “Palestine will surely become free.”

In the audiotape, which is partly in Arabic, Khamenei gives blessings to those who fight against Israel and says, “Peace be upon the children of our nation, peace be upon the brave jihadists in Palestinian and Lebanese resistance. Today the Islamic world and the whole world are witnesses to great revelations that show change in international affairs.”

The ayatollah promises a restructuring of the Middle East: “Palestine will be free, have no doubt in this. … Palestinians will return there and there will be a Palestinian government … and that is based on the truth revealed by God. A new Middle East will be … an Islamic Middle East.”

Khamenei attacks Israel for defending itself: “They attacked Lebanon – a mistake. They attacked Gaza – a mistake. They attacked those (Turkish) ships – a mistake. These mistakes, one after another, show that the murderous Zionist regime of Israel is reaching the final fall and destruction of its own non-existence.”

In promising the annihilation of Israel, the supreme leader also says, “There is no doubt that victory awaits the Palestinian people in the future, and the myth of Zionist power over this region will completely vanish, Allah willing.”

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/08/destruction-of-israel-guaranteed-ayatollah-says/#E2CkaGmz8XMIUZLc.99

Biometrics Can Revolutionize Mobile Payment Security

London--7 August 2013--With the explosion in smartphones usage, the number of payments done via mobile devices has significantly increased over recent years. As eCommerce becomes mCommerce, the industry has to focus on payment security. During a 'card not present' process, a personal account number (PAN), expiration date, and card validation code (CVC) are not enough to completely secure a transaction. Biometrics that provide high levels of security and an intuitive customer experience might be the solution for secure mobile payments.

"Protecting the mobile device itself is a first step, necessary to secure mobile payments. Although a personal identification number (PIN) can do the job, in 2011 more than 60% of smartphone users were not using a PIN to protect their mobile access," noted Frost & Sullivan Global Program Director, ICT in Financial Services, Jean-Noel Georges.

Over the past decade many biometric projects have emerged with the aim of enabling user identification on mobile devices. In Europe, the MOBIO (Mobile Biometry) project is noteworthy, with the aim to develop advanced biometric tech solutions for authentication on personal mobile devices. Leveraging the existing technologies embedded within these devices (e.g. headphone, microphone and camera), the optimal solutions included voice and facial recognition, and bi-modal authentication.

"The time is now right for biometric technology to emerge as a secure solution for mobile applications that require high levels of security, particularly payment," said Mr. Georges. "From a pure-payment security point of view, biometrics has already delivered significant advantages."

The need to have a simple and intuitive payment solution precedes success. Natural Security, for example, developed a biometric point of sale (POS) solution based on fingerprint (veins or digital) recognition. The fingerprint reader connects to a contactless object (contactless card) to verify that the identified personal data matches the information stored on the card. This is a practically effortless payment mechanism that does not require a PIN or card and provides a great customer experience.

"One potential mobile development could have a huge impact on biometric security solutions; rumours persist that the next iPhone will include a fingerprint sensor. Given that Apple acquired Authentec – with its TouchChip product family – in 2012, this is a strong possibility," added Mr. Georges.

Remembering PINs could become soon a thing of the past. With biometrics the user is the unique key to device, application, and payment security, making it a high rank of protection. But even if these technologies are ready, the cost and complexity of integrating them into mobile devices make widespread rollout a huge challenge.

Moreover, the end user will need time to accept this new way of interacting with his or her device. Other projects have already appeared that use an individual's personal magnetic field as an identifying signature. "We expect to see biometrics becoming increasingly prevalent over the course of the next 3-4 years, driven by a desire among vendors and consumers alike to be better protected when accessing mobile services," summarized Mr. Georges.


Till Debt Do US Part: 'Country's backlog much bigger than declared' (ft. Jim Rogers)

Riot at Greek migrant detention camp

They have their FEMA camps in use.....

POLICE have been dispatched to put down a riot at Greece's main migrant detention camp with detainees hurling stones at officers and setting fire to living quarters.

Local television footage on Saturday showed fires blazing at the Amygdaleza detention camp outside Athens, where about 1200 mainly Asian migrants are kept.

"We have 10 officers injured by stones and other objects thrown at them," a police spokesman told AFP.

"The detainees set fire to mattresses and their living quarters but riot police have been sent and the situation is calming down," he said.

Amygdaleza is one of several detention camps set up since last year to assist in the repatriation of thousands of undocumented migrants.

The police spokesman said rioting began when the detainees were told their maximum stay in the camp would be extended to 18 months from a year previously.

Rights groups charge that the migrants have been subjected to abuse in the camps and are denied proper healthcare.

Last week, leftist group KEERFA said Muslim detainees had been beaten by guards during prayers.

In July, the same group reported the death of an Afghan detainee from a pulmonary infection which his guards had allegedly ignored for months.

Greece is a major entry point into the European Union for migrants and refugees fleeing war-torn or impoverished countries in Africa, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent.

Herald Sun

Pope Francis: greetings to Muslims, our brothers

Pope Francis on Sunday urged Christians and Muslims to promote mutual respect , especially through the education of new generations. His remarks came at the end of his Angelus address when he sent greetings to Muslims throughout the world who have just celebrated the end of the fasting month of Ramadan.

Text of report below:

Pope Francis spoke to the thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square about how God’s love is our greatest treasure. He said today’s gospel reading from St Luke talks to us about our desire for a meeting with Christ, calling it a key aspect of human life. All of us, the Pope said, "have this desire in our hearts, be it explicit or hidden." In St. Luke’s account of Jesus walking with his disciples towards Jerusalem, Christ reveals to them what is really important for him at that time. The Pope says Jesus’s thoughts include a distancing from earthly goods, faith in the providence of the Father and his interior vigilance while awaiting the Kingdom of God. This gospel account, he continues, teaches us that a Christian is someone who carries within him a deep desire to meet the Lord together with his brethren and his companions along the way. All this can be summed up in Jesus’ words: “for wherever your treasure is, that is where your heart will be too.”

Addressing the pilgrims directly, Pope Francis asked them two questions, “do you have a heart with a wish or do you have a closed heart, a sleeping heart, a heart that is anesthetized." His second question for the pilgrims was: “Where is your treasure”, what for you is the most important and precious reality that attracts your heart like a magnet?" "Is it" he asked, "God’s love which is the desire to do good to others and live for the Lord?" Pope Francis went on to describe how God’s love keeps a family united and gives meaning to our daily tasks and also helps us to face up to the big challenges. This, he declared, is the true treasure for mankind. God’s love isn’t something vague and generic, "it has a name and a face, Jesus Christ." The Pope said "God’s love gives value and beauty to every human activity" and it gives meaning to negative experiences. That’s because God’s love allows us to move beyond those experiences and not remain prisoners of evil but also be open to hope and the final destination of our pilgrimage.

Before reciting the Angelus prayer the Pope recalled today’s feast of St. Clare of Assisi who left everything to consecrate herself to Christ in poverty, following in the footsteps of St. Francis. 

He said this saint gives us a beautiful witness of today’s gospel and she helps us, together with the Blessed Virgin Mary, to live it out, each one according to their own vocation.

After the Angelus prayer, Pope Francis departed from his prepared remarks to recall that this coming Thursday is the solemnity of Mary’s Assumption into Heaven and said on that day we will honour Her. He then said he wished to send greetings to Muslims, our brothers, throughout the world who have just finished celebrating the end of the holy month of Ramadan . Referring to his earlier message released to mark this event, the Pope said he hoped that Christians and Muslims will strive to "promote mutual respect, especially through the education of the new generations."

He concluded his remarks by greetings all the pilgrims and groups present and reminding them of the words which were the motto of the recent World Youth Day gathering in Rio: “Go and make disciples among all nations.”

Text from page http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/08/11/pope_francis_greets_muslims_and_urges_both_christians_and_muslims_to/en1-718872
of the Vatican Radio website