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Saturday, March 1, 2014

US Ambassador to China resigns

WASHINGTON, Feb. 27 (UPI) -- The U.S. Ambassador to China, Gary Locke, delivered farewell remarks on Wednesday to mark the end of his three-year tenure as ambassador.

Locke explained his decision, which he described as "not an easy decision," to return to the U.S. so that his two oldest children could complete their high school education in Seattle, saying "it was a family decision." Locke's wife Mona returned for the farewell, having departed China several months earlier with their children.

"... I depart Beijing with a real sense of achievement and a great sense of optimism for what the future holds for our two great countries."

Secretary of State John Kerry lauded Locke's achievements Thursday, calling him "a champion of human dignity and a relentless advocate for America’s values," and cited Locke's success in reducing the wait time for a U.S. visa to three days and increasing Chinese investment into the U.S. beyond what it had been in the past 11 years combined.

Kerry also noted the ambassador's personal journey as a descendant of Chinese immigrants who then became the first ambassador to China of Chinese ancestry.

"The first time I heard him speak at the Magnuson Awards in Seattle, Gary talked movingly about what it meant to be the son and grandson of Chinese immigrants. It was a story," Kerry said, that was "stamped into his DNA as a public servant, and it became lessons stamped into his DNA as a diplomat."

Locke previously served as secretary of Commerce and governor of Washington. He was appointed ambassador to China in 2011.

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2014/02/27/US-Ambassador-to-China-resigns/3301393557365/#ixzz2udu9PBzb

Rome days away from bankruptcy

Matteo Renzi, the Italian prime minister, came under pressure on Thursday as the city of Rome was on the brink of bankruptcy after parliament threw out a bill that would have injected fresh funding.

Ignazio Marino, Rome mayor, said city services like public transport would come to a halt and that he would not be a "Nero" - the Roman emperor who, legend has it, strummed his lyre as the city burnt to the ground.

Marino said that Renzi, a centre-left leader and former mayor of Florence who was only confirmed by parliament this week, had promised to adopt urgent measures to help the Italian capital at a cabinet meeting on Friday.

The newly-elected mayor faces a budget deficit of 816 million euros ($1.1 billion) and the city could be placed under administration if he does not manage to close the gap with measures such as cutting public services.

"Rome has wasted money for decades. I don't want to spend another euro that is not budgeted," Marino said, following criticism from the Northern League opposition party which helped shoot down the bill for Rome in parliament.

The draft law would have included funding for Rome from the central government budget as a compensation for the extra costs it faces because of its role as the capital including tourism traffic and national demonstrations.

Other cash-strapped cities complained it was unfair.

But Marino warned there could be dire consequences.

"We're not going to block the city but the city will come to a standstill. It will block itself if I do not have the tools for making budget decisions and right now I cannot allocate any money," he told the SkyTG24 news channel.

Marino said that buses may have to stop running as soon as Sunday because he only had 10 percent of the money required to pay for fuel in March.

He added: "With the money that we have in the budget right now, I can do repairs on each road in Rome every 52 years. That's not really maintenance."

Credit to The Telegraph

Why don’t humans have identity chips?

Look at this they are promoting the idea…it´s going to be a easier life.
Like the promise of the safer world with the airports controls

Watching our new dog have his identity chip implanted recently made me wonder why we humans don’t have the same process available.

A tiny little needle is used to insert the “chip” and the dog barely noticed. I’ve seen bigger needles used for human injections. So the actual implanting wouldn’t be a problem.

Human chips could be constructed to contain different kinds of information, which could only be “read” by those entities with a need to know.

One would obviously contain your identity — name, address, phone number and perhaps next of kin with a contact number for general identification, especially if you were unable to provide that information yourself. You would use it when you voted, or any other occasion that required identification.

You might have one, or a separate portion of one that contained any vital medical information. You know, the kind they repeatedly want you to fill out on the forms you get at the doctor’s office. Only your medical facility or an emergency service could access that information. When your medication changes, your doctor could phone in the change to the responsible chip provider and it would be electronically added.

Another chip, or portion of one, would contain your bank identification. You could just wave it at the drive up window instead of having to fish out a card; lean way out the window and poke buttons to say you wanted English or Spanish. It would access your account the way your pin number does now.

You and your children would be identifiable without having to carry cards and whatnot of various kinds, necessitating hauling your wallet out in awkward places like your rear pocket — the one you are sitting on in the car.

For those in the military in combat, it might ease identification.

If you are a traveler and need identification, your chip would have whatever immigration needed and you could just run your arm under a “reader” and continue on your way.

If the implanted “seed” carried a GPS capability, it would be useful for keeping track of children, the elderly or the mentally challenged who might wander away, or worse, be taken.

This chip could be altered when the “child” reached the age of 18 or 21, unless the holder agreed to leave it in.

Not sure an adult child would feel a need for the police to know their every move, or their parents.

Later, as in the incidence of the elderly or demented, the chip could be turned on again.

Think of the savings in time, paper and hassle. Not to mention the unlikely event of having this information stolen.

The only way that might happen is too grisly to think about.

A thief could hardly expect to be served by carrying a severed arm around, or a chip without the arm it belonged to.

The wave of a wand tells the vet or humane society that our dog is Teddy and where he belongs and how to contact us — simple, painless, technology that works.

How come a dog’s life is easier than ours?


Newspaper Review with David Icke