Tag Archives: Financial Times

Is it progress?

We have at times a fair feeling of what costs are required in any business, we are at times a little off, we are at times a little bemused, but what is the feeling that people got two days ago when the Financial Times gave us ‘Europe’s banks slash 60,000 jobs as outlook turns negative‘? The story (at https://www.ft.com/content/e17ee0f2-183b-11ea-9ee4-11f260415385) seems to hand over another part of a story, but not the one that is out in the lighters. When we are confronted with ‘European bosses have been left with little option but to slash tens of thousands more jobs to try to address their chronically poor profitability‘, we might think that banks are unprofitable, yet the entire debt issues seemingly takes that out of the equation. When you look around in your area, are there more banks or less banks? There is another side, any debt driven errors and system malfunctions are now clearly in the hands of the banks, this means that THEY must give rise to repairs, to paying for the issues at hand and they are not allowed to pass these costs onto the customers. You see 60,000 jobs are ‘suddenly’ regarded as ‘poor profitability‘. It seems that the data dimensionality of banks is almost literally set to ‘profit through inactions‘ and as such they must pay for the blowback because inaction is never a cause of non stop profit.

So when we see: “lenders across Germany, UK, France, Spain and Switzerland have collectively announced more than 60,000 jobs cuts this year” and we investigate the stage, we would come to very different conclusions. Yet the picture is not that clear, the graphics that the article show, an image that include those trading below book value and those above book value gives a different picture, it shows a remarkable group of European and Rest of World banks trading below book value, so they are trading at a loss, which is of course debatable at the best of times. In that group we find ING, HSBC, Deutsche bank, Santander and a few others, the question becomes, why were they allowed to trade below book values in the first place? and it opens up a can of worms on several sides. As such we see a repetition of the Dutch bad bank issues when we are confronted with “resulting in 18,000 job losses and the creation of a new “bad bank” to dispose of €288bn of unwanted assets” Yet what happened to the commissions of hundreds of staff members as close to a third of a trillion is not returned? We merely see banks that wanted to look good whilst there was no reason to see them as good, so as such “chief executive Christian Sewing announced a retreat from investment banking over the summer, resulting in 18,000 job losses” makes me wonder about the levels of stupidity allowed at Deutsche Banks, does that not count for you? I wonder if we get an article on just how much the bunglings of Christian Sewing got him paid, in base income and bonuses. The fact that Deutsche Bank is losing one in five jobs is a larger issue, the idea that one in five jobs are lost in a bank shows that they have been playing the numbers and in all this europe will see another wave of bank responsibility whilst it is done AFTER the fact, so why was the EU not on top of this? And people complain about me mentioning the entire EU gravy train, I reckon that this example should set the straight, the EU have been facilitating to a much larger degree and the taxpayer gets to pay the bill, or did you think that shoving ‘a new “bad bank” to dispose of €288bn of unwanted assets‘ was done for corporate responsibilities. 

It gets to be a lot worse, Moody’s which does not have the greatest reputation when we look at financial meltdowns is stated to have said “Moody’s, which this week changed its outlook for global banks to negative from stable, warns that the “profitability gap between euro-area banks and global peers will widen further” in the medium term despite the large headcount reductions” yet when we mull over the numbers (Deutsche Bank with one in five jobs lost) gives out a whole different stage when we are confronted with “this week changed its outlook for global banks to negative from stable“, all whilst the numbers show that this was a flaw in the making, months in the making, as such it makes Moody’s a joke, not a reporting entity.

So all in al it is not consolidation, but a lack of oversight that is causing additional pain to the industry, I wonder how long it will take the other newspapers to catch on, and this is not limited to banks, this will take on a larger role all over Europe. Yet the gravy train will ignore the pains and it will support its own interests through recommendations.

 

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Desert for breakfast

There are moments where you see the road unwind in front of you, I am not meaning in some imaginary way, but in the real sense. Consider Highway 40 from Riyadh to Dammam, and you are on the road getting there, for whatever reason. Now as a driver you see the road ahead of you, yet at some point you do not merely see a mile or two miles ahead, your focus increases and suddenly you see 10-15 miles ahead, you sense all that is coming your way and whatever is driving in front of you. Ask anyone who drives a lot; it happens to all of us. A similar stage is unfolding now and in a different way. The first article in the Arab News gives us: ‘King Salman calls Aramco attacks a ‘cowardly act’ aimed at destabilizing Saudi Arabia‘, it is an important piece in all this, because in very unexpected ways, I believe that his royal highness was incorrect, specifically the part of ‘destabilizing Saudi Arabia‘, as it seems Iran pushed the wrong buttons and achieved the opposite.

We see this in the second part (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1558581/middle-east), where we see ‘Aramco attacks solidify Iran’s ‘enemy’ status among young Arabs‘, it is not only there, we see that as the media is showing us more on the evil that Iran is doing, we see a movement where consideration towards Iran is waning and the politicians trying to broker selfish deals are now in a stage where their careers are now in question whenever they are talking about finding some political deal. The voices are changing the clearest in France, Britain and Germany, and this implies that not only is the nuclear deal coming to a clear end, there is the additional impact that the Saudi opposition we have seen over the last 6 months are waning as well. I believe that the quote “According to the Arab Youth Survey, which was published in May by the PR consultancy ASDA’A BCW, 67 percent of the region’s youth saw Iran as an enemy, as opposed to 32 percent who saw it as an ally” will shift within the next two weeks, as the Saudi Arabian population is getting more and more of the acts that Iran has been involved in, especially abroad, gives rise that the group seeing Iran as an optional ally will degrade to a mere 25% (or even lower) soon enough, as Saudi International students give rise to the acts of Iran will also give rise to contemplation to other local students wherever they are.

As the stage unfolds towards perceiving Iran as an enemy and a threat to stability in the Middle East, we see a larger group of people advocating harder acts against Iran. I personally believe that the US putting boots on the ground will also help the Saudi population towards the understanding that there is much larger unity against Iran, even as I noted and reported in the last two months that Saudi Arabia had been deserted too often when they were attacked, the last attack had international repercussions and it seems that more and more eyes are looking at what Iran is doing to others, giving a much better view of Saudi Arabia after all the targeted bad events view that the media in the west had been giving Saudi Arabia since 2018 (well, it was since before that, but it became a lot more negative since 2018).

There is an additional reason for a larger unification. As we look at the news, we see CNN report 5 hours ago that “Iran’s foreign minister has raised the prospect of a new agreement with the United States that would see permanent sanctions relief exchanged for Tehran’s permanent denuclearization“, whilst Reuters gives us an hour ago “Iran ruled out the possibility of negotiating a new deal with major powers“, in this we see Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif as the two faced monster, merely seeking the limelight at every opportunity he gets. All whilst the Washington Post reports 9 hours ago ‘Iran’s foreign minister says diplomacy with the U.S. is over‘ with the leading quote “any prospect of direct interaction between U.S. and Iranian officials is now officially eliminated“, I personally believe that the people have had enough of the banter by this petulant toddler named Iran, in addition we see that the Media is taking a less positive stance towards Iran, all these elements are seemingly polarising at the same time. Not only is there stronger unison within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, there is also a larger awareness that stronger ties with Saudi Arabia could also result a much larger play towards actual Middle Eastern stability.

Yet the battle is not over, only 25 minutes ago, the Financial Times reports (at https://www.ft.com/content/1e818d2e-de30-11e9-9743-db5a370481bc) that ‘France and Germany add backing to call for new Iran nuclear deal‘. Clearly there are mutters in the ranks all over Europe and making sure that everyone knows what games are played becomes essential in stopping Iran. The becomes a larger issue when we see “If it was a bad deal — and I’m willing to accept that, it had many, many defects — then let’s do a better deal,” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said. The problem with that statement is that the EU will have to give in towards Iran to some degree and when we consider that Iran has violated conditions of the nuclear pact 4 times already, we see a larger failing. Even as we accept the larger view that the Financial Times gives with: “The time has come for Iran to accept negotiation on a long-term framework for its nuclear programme as well as on issues related to regional security, including its missiles programme and other means of delivery” (a part I do not deny or oppose) the issue is not the media, when you consider the timeline.

Mixing the message

It was interesting to see that the Arab News was on my side 3 weeks before I got here. Arab News (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1548681) gives us in the article ‘Iran’s mixed messages on negotiations with US‘ several issues and is goes beyond the US, Iran is doing a similar tactic with the EU, the media in the last 24 hours ago are a decent indicator of that.

In the article Dr. Mohammed al-Sulami gives us: “It asserted that Zarif’s attendance provided further proof that it is actually the US president who is suffering diplomatic isolation, as it had previously claimed. Rouhani also announced that he too would not mind meeting with any foreign official, so long as this meeting would bring benefits to Iran and serve its national interests“, as well as “However, the supreme leader has found a possible way out of the current impasse by launching a new slogan, “heroic flexibility,” under the pretext that any negotiations that take place with the “Great Satan” within the framework of aiding Iran’s nuclear program could be allowed if they meet certain objectives“. These parts come to blow when we consider the final quote: “Arab countries should learn the lessons of the recent past and seek to play an effective role in any future negotiations to maintain their own interests, given the fact they are the ones most directly affected by the Iranian regime’s behavior in the region” there is a larger play and even as the limelight is on a nuclear deal and an optional deal with the US, the game that is unfolding is mixed messages that are on the second level aimed at the neighbours of Saudi Arabia.

How did I get there?

There are a few parts in this, first it is the speech by President Rouhani which is the given in the headline ‘Iran asks West to leave Persian Gulf amid heightened tensions‘ with added text “Rouhani separately promised to unveil a regional peace plan at this week’s upcoming high-level meetings at the United Nations“, with all due respect, asking a proxy war player like Iran to handle a peace plan is like asking Mr. Fox whether he could watch your chickens whilst you go out to have lunch, Mr Fox ends up getting a much better meal in the process. I believe that part of this scenario involves Bahrain and the UK Royal Navy base at Salman Port. With the British SAS now upping security, the IRGC would not be able to carry out any actions against targets, they are no match for the British SAS, it would not be a war or a skirmish, and it would merely end up being an exercise in IRGC troop extermination. It is merely one of a few handles that the mixed messages from Iran open. The mixed messages also increase pressures and stress levels in Qatar and the UAE, not to mention Oman.

How wrong am I?

That is up for debate, the entire matter is still moving along and in the end it depends on the moves and actual tactical moves that Iran will make, more important, they will not make a move until the final moment. In all this, as the Arab News reported less than an hour ago (at https://www.arabnews.com/node/1558801/business-economy) where King Hamad of Bahrain denounced the “serious escalation targeting the security and stability of the region”, I believe that this is still true, not in regards to the stability of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, yet it is my personal view that the mixed messages is about creating inactions against Iran. It is an intelligent move, with the number of opponents that Iran faces; it wants to keep Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE out of the mix for the longest of times, whilst using the non-aggression pact of Oman to keep waters as traversable as possible. All the indicators I see is that Iran is very much ready for hit and run attacks where it can and when they do take this journey they want local waters (Oman, UAE and Qatar) to be a hindrance for the non-Middle Eastern nations participating in the actions against Iran. It is my personal view and optionally in incorrect one, but I do remember my maritime training and when we take a look at the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS, Part III), we get to see in Article 41 we see that ships in transit to respect applicable sea lanes and traffic separation schemes. Such a scheme does exist in the Strait of Hormuz, adopted by the International Maritime Organization, which directs westbound traffic within the strait through Iranian territorial waters. It’s not clear where in relation to the outer limit of Iran’s territorial sea the Stena Impero was when the Iranian action took place, but Iran is not alleging the ship had no right to be where it was, and now we see that when article 41 is applied any military vessel obeying that would become a juicy target for Iran, if the bordering nations demand that sea lanes are respected and no transgressions in their local waters will be tolerated, that situation becomes very real; the NATO fleet and US fleet could optionally get stuck in the Gulf of Oman, as such, my view on trying to keep Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and the UAE on the fence would be a larger tactical problem soon enough and whilst Iran plays their mixed messages game and there is no state of war in play, Iran gets to have (for a limited time) a tactical advantage in the Sea of Dammam (aka Persian Gulf).

Basically we would all like desert for breakfast so that the day seems more sweet, however if it was up to Iran, porridge would be the only acceptable dish, salted porridge, served in the Gulf of Oman.

 

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The new politics

I still feel shivers lately when people like Jeremy Corbyn refer to the UK as a democracy. We could overly vocal voice that leaving democracy to an anti-Semite is slightly too uncomfortable. To illustrate this I refer to the BBC (at https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-45030552), The quote: “In April 2019, the Sunday Times reported that Labour had received 863 complaints against party members, including councillors. The newspaper claimed leaked e-mails it had seen showed more than half of the cases remained unresolved while there had been no investigation in 28% of them. It said fewer than 30 people had been expelled while members investigated for posting online comments such as “Heil Hitler” and “Jews are the problem” had not been suspended. Labour disputed the reports while Jewish Voice for Labour, a newly constituted group supportive of Mr Corbyn, maintained the number of cases being investigated represented a tiny fraction of Labour’s 500,000 plus membership.” is central here. I would accept ‘the number of cases being investigated represented a tiny fraction of Labour’s 500,000 plus membership‘, yet in political places, this is too much headway and too much festering, as such there is a debilitating level of mistrust when these issues are not investigated, and with almost one third not being investigated, the issue is a rather large one. Then we get to BBC Panorama’s “Mr Corbyn’s communications chief Seumas Milne – had interfered in the process of dealing with anti-Semitism complaints“, which in itself is a clear indication that the stage is much larger than we are led to believe. The BBC In August 2018 gave additional visibility not merely to his links with Terrorism, the quote: “critics have pointed out that a photograph from the event appears to show him standing opposite the graves of Atef Bseiso and Salah Khalaf, two senior PLO officers who were accused of links to the Munich attack and were assassinated“, we now have two options. Either Corbyn was played, or he is too sympathetic towards terrorists, in either case this is not some path to peace as the quote: “he had attended the event in Tunis as part of a wider event about the search for peace” was given. So either he got played (which I would accept to some degree), or he has too strong ties to extreme anti-Israel groups, either way the man should not be allowed in UK politics.

This is not merely about Jeremy Corbyn; this is a much larger setting. The setting is European. You see there is a shift going on and it is a very dangerous one. The UK is and should always be a Monarchy, as a monarchy the UK looks after ALL its citizens, rich, poor, well off and anyone not well off. This is opposing the European model which is overwhelmingly a Corporatocracy, more dangerously, it has in the last three years instilled a much stronger stage of corpocracy and these two are not the same. Let me explain.

A corpocracy is a corporate bureaucracy, characterized by ineffective management (EU Gravy train anyone?)

This is important, because this is a very dangerous stage, it affects democracy and more important deflates the long term chance that any democracy can be effectively applied. This is pushed by three parts; corporations, interest groups and what I call the Jackal gang.

I do not have to explain the corporations. The interest groups is another matter, here in one example we see in the Guardian (at https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/04/no-deal-brexit-food-shortages-brc), in the example we get Andrew Opie, the director of food and sustainability of the British Retail Consortium telling us: “Our assessment is based on discussion with our members, who move fresh food every day, and the likely disruption“, as well as “We modelled that with our members who have told us there will be disruption to fresh food“, these statements were casually accepted. Yet WHO checked and critically investigated ‘We modelled that with our members‘, modelling implies algorithms, modelling implies a state of data analytics, dash boarding and optionally clear reports. Who checked those? Andrew Opie? He has one goal, to keep markings for his members as high as possible and Brexit gets in that way. He is not alone; there are dozens if not hundreds who have been playing that game playing the fear monger card again and again in the last three years. How much famine was there in the UK in the 70’s and before? This is not about supply, this is about expedited margins and the media is not telling the people this, they are not investigating this to the degree they should. The people are merely pushed into fear towards remaining in the EU and that gravy train is too expensive for all of us. The EU has well over €3 trillion debt and there is no path that leads to any exit, not for generations and this benefits the banks, it benefits the people on the EU gravy train, it does not benefit small businesses, it does not benefit the people and there is no end in sight. Brexit was the first clear step to make things better for the British people and the people in the commonwealth in the long term, yet the US, corporations and the IMF will not entertain it, they have too much to lose.

And this is not over, it is about to get worse. We see this in the Financial Times (at https://www.ft.com/content/0ff70e24-cef8-11e9-99a4-b5ded7a7fe3f) even as it seemingly starts low key with “Christine Lagarde has called on European governments to co-operate more closely over fiscal policy to stimulate the stuttering Eurozone economy” which changes tune as we get: “aimed at rich economies like Germany and the Netherlands, she said governments who “have the capacity to use the fiscal space available to them” should spend on improving their infrastructure“, she did not mention some balance of infrastructure and reducing debt, no reducing debt is off the table. And as we get: “The central bank could “direct” its corporate asset purchases towards green bonds once the EU and other regulators have agreed on a common framework for green finance“, which is the foundation for another Stimulus, a plan that failed twice is now again being used to create more debt and pushing what seemingly was once a democracy into a corpocratic Corporatocracy, a stage where nations are no longer in charge, corporations are and we see that push more and more, the fact that freedom of choice in the UK is no longer honoured, as well as the fact that freedom of choice is now regarded as a natural disaster is a clear stage on that road.

Voicing it into a stage where it’s called ‘fiscal stimulus‘ creating the regard that the ECB needs to be to be ‘agile’ in facing economic trouble is merely a relabelled stage where Wall Street and its banks are deciding what Europeans and Brits are allowed to do and short sighted politicians are actually handing them the national keys to do just that. In the age of an aging population that is even more dangerous, for the mere reason that the debts cannot continue a stage of retirement, making the validity of aged people almost obsolete. Again this is all in the view of Corporatocracy; for them the bottom line is margins and profits, to get that 100% needs to be an enabler or a consumer, the rest has no value and we are pushing more and more in this direction.

The Washington Post (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/lagarde-defends-european-central-bank-stimulus-at-hearing/2019/09/04/17abb148-cf10-11e9-a620-0a91656d7db6_story.html) gives us part of the Corporatocracy setting.

In the line “uncertainty over tariffs has sideswiped the 19-country Eurozone as businesses delay investments and new orders“, the fact that any delay has that much of an influence on American needy people is almost too unacceptable. This is more than just the ‘turmoil from the U.S.-China trade conflict‘. We can (speculatively) consider the line: “it could disrupt business dealings between the U.K. and the 27 remaining members“, which in light of “Britain is currently scheduled to leave the European Union. If that happens without a divorce agreement to smooth trade” is not about ‘smooth trade’ at all, this is about managed maximised margins, something Wall Street relies on very fucking heavily, so the entire stage where the new ECB ruler is not one of the other banks, but the previous sceptre wielder of the IMF is a much larger issue, it is also a case that the US is a lot more in charge of Europe that we think. Consider the amounts of debts and the fact that no one has that much money. A stage where two banks lend each other on paper $2 trillion, whilst neither has the funds. It is one situation that will lose control more and more and the important questions are not being asked. When we see Francois Villeroy de Galhau (Governor of the Bank of France), Klaas Knot (ECB policy maker) and Madis Muller (ECB policy maker) are a few of a growing group of people opposing stimulus (read: massively sceptical), whilst the one in favour (former IMF) is now President elect of the ECB. The one doesnot imply the other, yet the stage where we see “resumption of bond purchases now would be disproportionate to economic conditions” is merely one option, there might be more, but stimulus is what the US and a corpocratic Corporatocracy requires to keep the margins and the people get to pay that invoice. More importantly the lack of oversight and the lack of transparency gives sway for the ECB bank to do whatever it wants, whenever it thinks it needs to.

In what kind of a democracy did Europeans sign up for that?

Corporatocracy

I mentioned that in an earlier blog, it is a state where corporations decide on matters and that is what we see to the much larger extent at present. It is an age where social securities collapse, housing is close to redundant and the age of age discrimination is at an all-time high. All issues visible to a larger extent. I mentioned a few other parts earlier in this article and that is merely the beginning. I needed to make this mention because it is time to explain another phrase I threw your way.

The Jackal gang

This is a group of facilitators and exploiters. The Jackal gang is pretty much everywhere, the problem is that the intentional ones are not the same as the beneficiary players. Let me explain the difference. There are vultures, which are pure carrion eaters, they devour whatever is no longer living (or too close to death to see the difference), with vultures we see a group of people who drop down on companies pronounced dead, or basically no longer serving and they take the pickings. This is the foundation of Vulture funds as well, Argentina being an excellent example in the past and they are about to become a repetitive example soon again. The 2001 default is one stage where Vulture Funds swept in to get nice pickings. Let’s face it, the Argentinians decided to go this way (no one else was offering). Opposing the Vultures are the Jackals, they are like Vultures carrion eaters, yet there is another side, Jackals also take on the sick and the weakened, in a pack they can take down a larger opponent and because the opponent was not dead the pickings are a lot better. In this example the Gravy Train (a first class experience that is always on the road with all the amenities); the gravy train is a large behemoth, it has all kinds of connections. There are subsidised needs, there are research and grant needs and there are logistical needs as well as operational ones. In this stage we see the beneficiary ones; they are merely offering a service like a hotel, lunch services, dry cleaning and so on. They are merely services that a person needs to rely on, yet in another stage when it is a catering service that is ALWAYS called on, or a mother organisation that gets all the contracts, we see the Jackal group. These people are all linked in one way or another and that is how the Gravy train operates and there are large amounts of money involved. To get you a more apt example, we look at the ECB and its part in the Greek financial tragedy (definitely not written by Sophocles).

Here we need to consider that the Securities Market Programme threatens the ECB’s legitimacy as the potential fiscal role is an inappropriate activity for an independent central bank. Some actions are valid as well as appropriate. when we see “In the event of a wholesale creditor run based solely on self-fulfilling expectations, it is reasonable for a central bank to intervene and act as a lender of last resort to financial institutions that would otherwise be solvent” we see an appropriate act. Yet in case of “The failing of the institution is that it is not credible that it is willing to purchase enough of the debt to contain the run. Unfortunately, the ECB’s insistence on secrecy with respect to the programme is particularly damaging. It is widely believed that the average discount to face value paid for the Greek debt acquired (prior to August at least) was no more than 20%. The national central banks appear to have sought out the lucky counterparties. And, the ECB won’t say who they are or how much they paid” is a stage where there is no transparency, the gains are not disclosed, there is a failing on managing the debt and the matter goes from bad to worse (source: CEPR’s policy portal, Anne Sibert). The issue was also illuminated in ‘Buiter, Willem (2009), “Recapitalising the Banks through Enhanced Credit Support: Quasi-Fiscal Shenanigans in Frankfurt”, Maverecon, Financial Times, 28 June‘.

A matter that should have been dealt with to a much larger degree now as this goes all the way back to 2011, the fact that another stimulus is coming lacking transparency is a huge deal, it implies that trust in the ECB needs to be revoked and written off (read: discarded).

I grant you from the very beginning that the this is a very complex matter (and I am all out of Economic degrees as I never had one), yet I know data and a lot of it is not adding up, questions that should be on the front of everyone’s mind are seemingly not openly asked or the existence of the questions are denied. The entire issue of Brexit as it is playing out is less about democracy and too much about the politics of pleasing large corporations, there are too many questions and quotes are merely copied by the media and not questioned and that is a democratic failing of the largest degree. Jeremy Corbyn with: “Jeremy Corbyn became the first Opposition leader in history to block a general election on Wednesday night” (source: The Telegraph) might be the most visible example, but he is not alone, there are scores of MP’s playing the ‘remain’ card and as I personally see it they should all be investigated. Consider the direct description of treason: ‘the crime of betraying one’s country, especially by attempting to overthrow the government‘, is that definition and that is what we see here. It is the stage we see now and many sources in the media are all about ‘quoting’ and not about investigating, it is the failure that must be fixed. Well, perhaps the option is to award certain politicians with the William Joyce medal. I am offering the thought that Jeremy Corbyn is to be reviewed to see if he should get the first one, who is with me?

The new politics are not about claiming and presenting, but the need to show allegiance and give proper explanation on why exactly things were done. Would that not make political life a lot more transparent? The ECB could learn from that, so two herrings caught with one rod.

 

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Government? Censorship?

We see it, we ignore it and others remain in denial. We are censored almost every day and we remain unaware. You see, the issue is not advocated as censorship. It is presented as filtered news, and it is not the same. As we looked Yesterday into the events surrounding Evgeny Lebedev, we see people like Jeremy Wright hiding behind “may have an effect on the Evening Standard and the Independent’s news agendas“, yet to what degree and in what direction, that part was not given, was it? In addition we were introduced to Nicky Morgan and the fact that this is now on her plate. Yet the issue of censorship is still here.

Bloomberg gave us: ‘Saudi Oil Plant Attacked by Drones‘ (at https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-08-17/saudi-oil-plant-attacked-by-drones-but-production-unaffected) 11 hours ago. We also get: “Yemen’s Houthi rebel leader Abdul Malik al-Houthi claimed responsibility for the attack in a televised speech which was aired via the rebel-held Saba news agency. The Houthi leader said the group launched the assault on the oil and gas facilities with 10 drones. This was done to deliver an “important message” to the members of the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, he said” yet no one is giving any explanation how Yemeni Houthi fighters got access to high end drones. 10 drones represent a significant investment, the Houthi forces have neither the funds nor infrastructure to acquire or built them, yet they are delivered, where from?

An attack that might be seen as a terrorist attack and the exposure is close to nil. We get the news from Arab News, from Al Jazeera. Yet the event that happened 11 hours ago, is still not covered by the BBC. They limited the Middle Eat page to the US Warrant to an Iranian oil tanker, then the news on ‘Rashida Tlaib rejects Israel’s offer of ‘humanitarian’ visit‘, which is a day old, the rest is 2 days old, or even older. That is the BBC now! We do see some news from Reuters and Haaretz, yet nothing from the other UK papers. Is that not weird? Is it so weird that Saudi Arabia wants to see more on the attacks on them? The UK is facing massive censorship and has been under censor’s scrutiny, yet the UK remains silent.

We see a little more when we face Al Jazeera who gives us “A Houthi military spokesman said earlier on Saturday that the group targeted the Shaybah oil field with 10 drones in what he said was the “biggest attack in the depths” of the kingdom, the world’s top oil exporter” in the article (at https://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2019/08/drone-attack-yemen-rebels-sparks-fire-saudi-oil-field-190817132916661.html). The other non-given issue is that the Shaybah facility is really close to the UAE borders. A lot of issues remain, but the media to a much larger extent has decided to silence the news, they have decided to be Anti-Saudi Arabia. The fact that Houthi terrorist forces are sending drones into Saudi Arabia, drones that they cannot build and drones that require hardware that they do not have, cannot create and optionally cannot operate is a much larger issue, but the UK media remains silent on it. How weird is that? So here we see a direct first part where it makes perfect sense to be in a stage where they have an invested interest in newspapers that might now give voice to what is going on. If the UK really wanted an independent press, the people in the UK would have been given the complete story on Houthi forces and the exposure of Iranian funding would be out in the open, that is not the case and we should all wonder why that is happening. Oh, and I understand that there is more news in the world, I understand that there is only so much on what an journalist can achieve, yet a middle eastern section on the BBC with two articles from the last TWO days and the rest is older is a little too weird for words. The fact that this was an attack on Aramco with the linked fact that we see loads on Aramco, but the entire mess of the attack (and lack of results from the attack) is not shown in the Financial Times, or the Guardian, who was willing to report only a little under 6 days ago ‘Saudi Aramco ready for record $2tn IPO after first-half results‘ gives rise to censorship and one sided reporting. So when exactly did we find that acceptable from any independent news force? The numbers and the events do not add up.

Even the Deutsche Welle gives us (at https://www.dw.com/en/yemen-houthi-rebels-target-saudi-oil-field/a-50066244) “This is the second such attack on the Saudi energy industry in recent days and comes amid high Middle East tensions” Really? the second attack? When was the first and why do I see almost nothing on that, and basically nothing from the Western European Newsgroups? There is even more, the quote “The Saudi acknowledgement of the attack came hours after Yahia Sarie, a military spokesman for the Houthis, issued a video statement claiming the rebels launched 10 bomb-laden drones targeting the field in their “biggest-ever” operation” gives rise to all kinds of intelligence issues, the fact that certain players are leaving this in the shadow of their desk is a larger issue. It gives rise to the accusation that the CIA is still on goal to keep stability in the Middle East to a minimum. The fact that we see the (optionally boasted) claim ‘their “biggest-ever” operation‘, whilst Yemen has no infrastructure to do this, I personally doubt that they have the knowledge to fly these drones to their target, all issues involving Iranian support, optionally via Hezbollah, all ignored and all non-reported.

That is not merely censorship that is the stage of filtering events on the world stage and keeping them out of sight all together. Is this the EU play to keep news away so that they can have some empty nuclear deal afloat? All hiding behind some INSTEX tool (Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges), whilst none of it brings any revenue or actual trade, there is no positive side and when we investigate the Iranian events towards the Houthi forces in support of attacking Saudi Arabia, we see a diminished setting, yet the EU is still hiding behind the nuclear deal that was never a deal in the first place. And now we can optionally add the news filtering that Saudi Arabia is facing. All is not well and a lot of it is about to get worse, all for the simple reason that some people are asking questions now and a lot more will be doing so soon enough, at that point any election falls into the water in a stage where the UK government has only the spin tour of the next election to rely on and in addition the media will feel the pain too. When the people realise that there is no longer an independent press. It went out of the window when politicians decided to ignore the Leveson report to the largest degree. They made their own bed, enjoy the nightmare it brings.

 

 

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The slammer got slammed

There is nothing so rewarding as the moment you realise that you get to slam the door on those slamming the door on you. It is an innate feeling that is in the core of all of us. It is more powerful than getting the drop on your boss or CEO with an overwhelming amount of narcissism and the overbearing feeling towards the need of being some dominant / dominatrix figure (at that point they become merely a figurine).

I made several references over the course of 2018 that this was coming, the stronger one in May 2018 (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2018/05/05/milestones/) where I made the reference: “the EU was never about everyone agreeing on everything and the economic setting that requires that to happen at present is also making the dangers of waves that sinks the barge called EU. Now, that seems like an exaggeration, but when you realise that the German anchor is the only one giving stability, you can see the dangers the EU faces and more important, the dangers of no reserves and an utter lack to keep proper budgets in place, a setting now in more danger for the reasons that I gave supported by the economic views of many others. I believe some are downplaying the impact, yet when we realise that EVERY European Union government is downplaying the economic impact (as every nation always wants to look as good as possible, which is a PowerPoint setting of the human ago) we get a much more dangerous setting“. The article ‘Milestones‘ has more, it also has references to the AfD (Alternative for Germany), and even as we see in the Financial Times (at https://www.ft.com/content/d695fff8-b838-11e9-96bd-8e884d3ea203) “It is a happy hunting-ground for the AfD: if polls are accurate, it could emerge as the most popular party in regional elections on September 1, even beating the left-of-centre Social Democrats which have governed this corner of East Germany since reunification in 1990. Two other eastern regions, Saxony and Thuringia, are also choosing new parliaments this autumn and, as in Brandenburg, the AfD is set to make big gains. That is a major problem for the eastern political elite“, I believe that this powerful eastern political elite is part of causing the headline ‘Germany: AfD surge threatened by party disunity‘, they are that scared at present. The gains cannot be stopped not to the degree some elitists are vouching for; the best that they can hope for is derailing them from becoming the majority, which is actually a political war that is allowed. The question becomes will it work?

We are 2-3 weeks away from finding out.

CNN gave us less than 2 days ago: ‘5 of the world’s biggest economies are at risk of recession‘ (at https://edition.cnn.com/2019/08/14/economy/recession-risk-economies/index.html), it is a huge part because the impact matters. Under Mario Draghi and his bond buying program, there are no reserves left, so the impact towards recession is about to get real. The shift in quality of life makes the consumer spending tactic an instant non option.

Yet, it all comes down to the Washington Post who (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/08/14/stocks-tank-another-recession-warning-surfaces) gives us: ‘Stocks losses deepen as a key recession warning surfaces‘. It is here that we get: “after a reliable predictor of looming recessions flashed for the first time since the run-up to the 2008 financial crisis. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 800 points, or about 3 percent, and has lost close to 7 percent over the past three weeks. Two of the world’s largest economies, Germany and the United Kingdom, appear to be contracting even as the latter forges ahead with plans to leave the European Union. Growth also has slowed in China, which is in a bitter trade feud with the United States. Meanwhile, Argentina’s stock market fell nearly 50 percent earlier this week after its incumbent president was defeated by a left-wing opponent“. First of all, ‘reliable predictor‘ is not the term I would use, the dangers were clear for well over a year, it was the wrong stage of a trade war, with the Huawei 5G setting that pushed the inevitable date forward by a lot. The entire Huawei stage was a stage of stupidity, and a more dangerous post-recession part than anyone was willing to consider. We might find clarity in the footnote: “But with so many losing confidence in the near-term prospects of the economy and rushing to buy longer-term bonds, the U.S. government now is paying more to attract buyers to its 2-year bond than its 10-year note“, is looking in the wrong direction. It is merely a small symptom at present and direct consequence on risk and not the one that bites. The US is losing its footing on the global mobile market faster and faster. And even as we accept the ‘marketing’ that Huawei gives via Cnet towards 6G, the direct truth is outstanding for a longer time. It links to my own IP that is currently available to Huawei and I want my share of that market, I believe that my part after the fact will be enough to truly make me independent on several fronts. One party found my claim a $ billion market through the investment on $25m post taxation too good to be true, but it is the second wave that takes care of my needs and you gotta give a little to get a little. It is was the ‘denied’ parts of Credit Agricole and the Paris games of 2024 that gave me the final straw I needed to see that I was right all along. In all this verification that I was correct was always the biggest issue for me to deal with, and the recession is making those big business daddies of greed close to desperate, giving me a small push forward. Those people are not willing to walk away from a one billion market at the investment of 2.5%, no bank has ever offered those margins and with the Credit Agricole parts exposed to the smallest extent, I know it will work. It is there that I saw that the IP I designed was never considered by either Google or Huawei, all set to iterative paths to innovation, and the economy shows that nearly all of the other players were looking at the next quarter, whilst the quarter+3 was the game changer. The Olympics gave the option to look at inverted innovation and make it a new innovation, Paris was not the first, but certainly the clearest indicator and whilst we see through Channel News “Huawei Technologies has joined 564 other entities in the Paris Call“, the message is not that there are 565 players, it is that they are all looking in a similar direction whilst the none excavated the gold mine that was right behind them, a first lesson that the classics can inspire towards a new direction. Now that I see their direction I found two other fields that had not been considered to the degree it needed. Saudi Arabia is giving us Neom City, but there is a lack in one direction and now that this can be exploited we see even more options. You only had to be willing to get your hands dirty in the most literal of ways. And all this is pushed even more through the impact of the European economy. A French invention gets a new life after almost 2 centuries and we can see that there is more to be found.

Sergey Brin on Sat. morning

It is what else Harmony OS can do that will push the benefits away from the US and it will hurt Google to the smallest degree (almost inevitable), Google is just too big, but now that the equation changes, it is Google who will be chasing Huawei, so well done Trump dude, you merely made everything worse for America and I will sell to the quickest bidder and the 2.5% approach gives me the edge; the two known entities Ren Zhengfei and Papa Smurf Sergey Brin can make the investment from the small change they have in their pockets and the bait would be just too appealing for them.

Al this was confirmed and accentuated through the US Senate with: “In February, the US Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing titled “Winning the Race to 5G and the Era of Technology Innovation in the United States”, to discuss what policies are required to accelerate the deployment of 5G to keep America “competitive on the international stage”” and whilst we accept the American point of view, they forgot about two elements in the 5G field and the upper echelons of decision makers showed at that point that they were working in a dimmed room without lights, giving additional evidence that they never saw the writing on the wall and now I get to make a new voice and whilst I only am willing to trust Google or Huawei in all this, there can only be one winner and the others are merely a chaser at best, it is the price of iteration over innovation. Even as Microsoft and IBM are in denial of what they are about to lose, they do know and accept their choice. Microsoft is banking on Azure and there the hindrance of Harmony will cause a void, they were ready for Android, yet HarmonyOS is another matter and China is seeing that as another opportunity. It is there where we see the talks of Huawei with the Shanghai Blue Cloud Technology taking an additional turn, and how many players in the Paris games are banking on Azure? How many lose out when they are not ready for the 5G version 2 under HarmonyOS, it will work with Android and Azure, but suddenly we will see some accidental 10% gap (latency) and that is how the game was played and all this before my elements come into play, and they will!

The big business slammers all relying on PowerPoint presentation they are given the elements and when we see the 2023 acceleration and people cannot answer the differences because they never considered looking behind them as well as looking at the corners of their eyes, the blind corners they ignored; now they no longer have one blind spot, they suddenly have three and we get all kinds of concept promises in presentation form, all whilst the data was never that unclear from the very beginning. An issue they claimed that it was being looked at.

So here I am, having to take their shit with the option to sit at the sidelines watching them fight over options because they anticipated without comprehension, sometimes the universe gets to be nice and smile at those having to take their shit. A direct zero day exploit of the applied intent of narcissism on how good a presentation looks, whilst their data never clearly supported it.

My case of exceeding expectations towards customer satisfaction trumped some short sighted ‘Ca$h is king‘ setting, because it works at the grocer, but that part has no bearing when their minimum needs exceed he budget of 80%, it was a simple equation from the very beginning. So when we are now considering the new ‘truth’ where the Washington Post gives us less than an hour ago: ‘Weak global growth likely to mean US slowdown, not recession‘, we merely see wishful thinking in the quote “Yet most analysts expect the U.S. economy to power through the rough patch, at least in the coming months, on the strength of solid consumer spending and a resilient job market. The U.S. stock market plummeted earlier this week when the bond market, spooked by the global turmoil, sent a possible early warning sign of a recession ahead: The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note slipped briefly below 2-year Treasury yields“, the article (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/weak-global-growth-likely-to-mean-us-slowdown-not-recession/2019/08/15/1cb8d81a-bfba-11e9-a8b0-7ed8a0d5dc5d_story.html),all whilst we see the clarity of next quarter believes linked to the next Thanksgiving and Christmas, all whilst it is Q2 2020 that makes the tequila slammer which gives the drinker the sledgehammer headache stated it was one that they never saw coming. The entire trade war is taking a new turn and when the people realise on all that the US is missing out on and therefor anyone taking that path will also learn that there is a long term price to pay and it is the markets that Google and Huawei are now staging for that brings the next stage. China has too much to gain, whilst Google will try to retain losses that they will optionally get (reduced growth is clearly a loss). Even as the impact for Google is small, losing one percent is still big news and there one percent adds to a billion plus, whilst their risk to hedge will cost them a mere 1.8% of the optional loss, it is a non-issue.

Guarantee?

There is none, but the option of a new 2% market is worth so much more than that, and it is not open to the iterative industries, innovators only, because it will be about the momentum and there is too much to gain. Consider what the 565 are looking at, whilst I focused on the group that represents up to 445,000,000 SME companies in a new 5G setting. The Olympics are merely the icing on the cake. 2020 Tokyo opens the doors more clearly but the impact is abundantly seen in Qatar 20222 and Paris 2024. And at present I see that they never looked in the places where they could be, merely where they want to be.

In the end it is one of Warren Buffett’s quotes that got me there: “the great moves are usually greeted by yawns“, thanks Warren; you were absolutely right on that part!

 

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Waking up 2 years late

The BBC gave us Yesterday: ‘Syria war: ‘World shrugs’ as 103 civilians killed in 10 days‘ (at https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-49126523), it goes on giving us the goods with: “The rising death toll in Idlib had been met with a “collective shrug” and the conflict had fallen off the international radar, while the UN Security Council was paralysed, she said.” the remark should be regarded as pointless, useless and inadequate, all at the same time. It seems to be that Michelle Bachelet is all about laying blame, while it is her office that had failed to the largest degree and the United Nations close to totally. To make good on that accusation, I merely need to point to my article of March 19th 2017, an article called ‘The failure of a current generation‘, it is there that I end the article with: “you only need to ask any Syrian refugee to hear clear doubt, especially after 6 years of too little actions and for the most no solutions. We as a global population have failed these victims who turned to us for help in the most disgraceful of ways“, events clearly visible well over two years ago. The equation is really not complex. It is a country no one cares about, it has no economic powers, there is no glory to get, only optionally the award called the ‘Extremely late to the party Award‘. No politicians wants to touch it, there is no glory, no Nobel Prize for peace and no financial rewards to be found. It is a pile of sand, stone and cadavers that is the brunt of it. The Syrian GDP is around 41.6 billion; the EU spends more on staples and paperclips every year (roughly). No body wants to touch it. Even as we hear the accusations by Madame Bachelet, we must notice the close to complete absence to get anything done.

So when we see: “Last week, the UN said more than 350 civilians had been killed and 330,000 forced to flee their homes since fighting escalated on 29 April. But that figure has now been revised, adding 103 extra deaths in the past 10 days alone. The estimate for the number displaced stands at more than 400,000“, we see the beginning of selective executions, optionally the stage of ethnic cleansing (requires more evidence to prove). That part is optionally seen when we consider one source giving us ‘In Syria’s Idlib, Turkey aims to curb Kurdish militia and refugee flow‘ last May. What is interesting is that the BBC and Madame Bachelet have no mention of Kurds at all.

Professor Balanche (research director at the University of Lyon) gave us at that time: “Turkey had long opposed any Syrian offensive against Idlib, out of concern about refugees and to focus on President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s primary goal of keeping the Kurdish-led People’s Defense Units (YPG) from taking control of Syria’s northeast frontier“, the timeline is uncanny and the fact that we also see (in August 2018) “Noting that there were Kurds in Idlib, Xelil continued, “Idlib is under occupation by terrorist groups supported by Turkey“, Xelil in this case is Aldar Xelil, a top Syrian Kurdish official. The fact that Madame Bachelet and the BBC are BOTH leaving that part not mentioned is a larger concern. It seems that Turkey is too important to lose to the west, the actions by the United States “Until Washington adopts a long-term strategic posture designed to safeguard Turkey’s core interests“, as well as ‘Turkey’s president calls for further interest rate cuts‘, with the additional “Erdogan says central bank’s decision, while welcome, does not go far enough“, as well as “Analysts say that Turkish assets have benefited from a dovish tilt by the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank, fuelling investor appetite for riskier emerging markets. Even after Thursday’s rate cut, Turkish assets offer a significant premium for investors” (at https://www.ft.com/content/974c1b5a-af9d-11e9-8030-530adfa879c2), it is all about giving way to economic interests and the investors. The media evolves into a Seraglio under the all seeing eye of cathouse owner Madame Bachelet, and until today I never expected the BBC to cater to that premise. They are all willing to hand over the lives of Syrians, no one cares about that, whilst we still hear he screaming over a journalist no one cares about (Jamal Khashoggi).

There is a clear path of 5 years of inactions towards Syria, all the actions of paper is literally it worth the value of the paper it was printed on. The United Nations in a seemingly long term strategy that has one massive flaw, by the time that their strategy has value, the Syrian population will be gone for 90%, with only the enabled left with all the resources and wealth. I reckon that the 6.5 million displaced within Syria will vanish, we have all seen this before, it is merely repetition and no one is willing to hold these parties to account, they have other more economically tainted interests.

For Russia it is good news, as Turkey already bought the missiles, it has more and more options in both Syria and Turkey, the inability to get anything done from EU and US shores implies that they have nothing left, just howling behind the humanitarian UN bitches, who are all speech (and essay) and for the most part of total inaction, and we have millions of Syrians who can testify to this, they have been doing so since 2017, yet those voices have been drowned out by the media to the largest extent. It was Yesterday that the Arab Weekly gives us “Syrian refugees can’t find enough arguments to convince the world of the need to end their crisis“, the answer is simple, they have no economic footprint so the west will not care, exploitation comes at a price, you are either a consumer or you do not matter. (at https://thearabweekly.com/syrian-refugee-crisis-sparking-populist-reactions-middle-east), in all this what we read written by Baha al-Awam is correct, there is nothing that is done, because those who care have other interests and Syria is not an interest for them. For a short time the Unites States was interested due to their ‘anti-communistic’ phobias pressing on the matter, but they lost that part as they are too bankrupt to intervene and for now keeping an imbalance on Iran versus Saudi Arabia is as good as it gets, because their footprint is better whilst the imbalance lasts, it is when Saudi Arabia truly grows, it is then that the US fears the impact that they lose in the Middle East, it is that simple. It was not rocket science; it never was in the first place.

Yet there is another side, one that cannot be ignored. The article (at https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-45403334) is linked to the article that we are talking about and it has a missing element. It is overwhelmingly Jihadist force and also has Syrian rebels, yet the implied presence of Kurds is ignored, however there are clear indications from several sources that there is a shift. With “those working in the northeast alongside Kurdish groups” indicates that Kurds are getting involved more and more in this region and this is likely what worries Turkey, because if this grabs a hold, it could spread to Turkey and that is what Turkey fears, it has too many issues and by the time acts matters Turkey will have to redeploy forces, to what degree I cannot tell, because I have not been able to find any numbers on Kurds, merely that it has been happening for several months now (if some media is to be believed).

Yet there is clear presence and the BBC ignored it, and that is what matters, because this is not how we have ever seen the BBC and that is a worry. So when we see the BBC waking up 2 year slate (in light of the article) I wonder who is taking a long hard reality driven look at what is actually happening there.

I wonder what we will be ‘informed’ about next.

 

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The Scott Pilgrim of Technology

There is a moment when we have to take account of actions; we have to push into the direct limelight the ACTUAL dangers. I did some of it when the DJI issues hit the news. With ‘That’s the way the money flows‘ (at https://lawlordtobe.com/2019/05/21/thats-the-way-the-money-flows/) we see certain actions, but have you considered the actual dangers?

In this case (for a few reasons I move towards the article in the Verge. Here (at https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/22/18634401/huawei-ban-trump-case-infrastructure-fears-google-microsoft-arm-security) we see what transpired half a day ago. With the ARM announcement people are getting worried. Yet they validly ask: “halting its access to current and future chip designs and coming on the heels of similar breaks from Google and Microsoft. Huawei is in deep, deep trouble, and we still don’t have a clear picture of why“.

Yes that is seemingly an issue, if there actually was an issue, in addition we are given “There’s never been a full accounting of why the US government believes Huawei is such a threat, in large part because of national security interests, which means much of the evidence remains secret” and that is where the issue is, it is hidden. There has not been one respectable cyber engineer giving a clear account of where the actual flaws are.

So when we see: “There was never any hard evidence of backdoors in Huawei’s cell towers — but, as hawks saw it, there didn’t need to be. As a hardware provider, Huawei needs to be able to deploy software the same way Apple deploys iOS updates. But as long as there was a pipeline from Huawei’s China headquarters to cell towers in the US, there would be a strong risk of Chinese surveillance agencies using it to sneak malware into the network“. We can accept that to some degree, yet the actual issue stated with: ‘there would be a strong risk of Chinese surveillance agencies using it to sneak malware into the network‘. If it is about risk then that risk is actually zero, you see Cisco solved that problem for Russian, Chinese and North Korean intelligence months ago. The fact that all over the US and now Europe, we see the dropping of Huawei as a consideration is not merely an act of discrimination, it could also be seen as an act of customer being betrayed by their governments.

What is the evidence?

As some experts give us something like: “The vulnerability could allow an authenticated, local attacker to write a modified firmware image to that component. A successful exploit could either cause the device to become unusable (and require a hardware replacement) or allow tampering with the Secure Boot verification process, according to Cisco’s advisory” and make no mistake, routers from Parks and recreation, to the Pentagon right up to the White House are optionally affected at present, the list (at https://tools.cisco.com/security/center/content/CiscoSecurityAdvisory/cisco-sa-20190513-secureboot#vp) shows a list that is impacting vulnerabilities to MILLIONS of devices and the media remains largely silent on it.

And when we also consider: “Other routing and switching gear patches won’t roll out until July and August, with some products slated for even later fixes, in October and November.” we should all realise that Chinese equipment does not make US hardware vulnerable, Cisco (an American company no less) did it for them. The Washington Post is not really covering it, are they? Perhaps because we see (at https://www.washingtonpost.com/brand-studio/wp/tag/cisco-webex) loads of space reserved for partner content, giving us the credo that I have mentioned a few times before. The media has become a whore (or perhaps better stated a person relying on questionable ethics). They cater to their shareholders, their stake holders and their advertisers; there is the real danger and the real vulnerability.

Keeping the people knowingly in the dark from actual dangerous situations, but that is not really what big business wants is it. The dangers that Huawei grew to twice its size was just too dangerous for those on the Wall Street gravy train, and whilst we see these dangers for almost a month, the value of Cisco goes up? Whilst millions of devices are vulnerable with many of them in that state to deep into November, optionally remaining a danger until well into January 2020, for the simple reason that delays are almost inevitable in these situations?

When we realise that we can Google on reported true and false weaknesses that hit Huawei and Cisco, it is shameful to see the following list:

News source

Huawei ‘danger’ given

Cisco vulnerability mentioned

Sydney Morning Herald

Yay

Nay

the Age

Yay

Nay

the Guardian

Yay

Nay

BBC

Yay

Nay

The Times

Yay

Nay

Australian Financial Review

Yay

Nay

Financial Times

Yay

Nay

Washington Post

Yay

Nay

LA Times

Yay

Nay

NOS (Dutch)

Yay

Nay

Dagens Nyheter (Swedish)

Yay

Nay

 

However, in case of the Sydney Morning Herald we do get to see sponsored content for Cisco and the Washington Post gave the readers Cisco Partner content.

As far as I have been able to tell, none of them gave any light to the vulnerabilities in Cisco Routers and Firewalls. Would you agree that a flaw impacting millions of devices is news? Many of them pulled a similar stunt in 2012 regarding Sony in the month before the release of the PS4. In regards to the list, these are supposed to be the more respectable choices for news; the list of absent news giving sources is a lot larger.

Whilst the IT news magazines gave the broader setting (as well as Cisco on their own site), we see that the media is seemingly playing a game of: ‘Let’s rent a hotel room on an hourly rate‘.

When we see Tara Seals in Threatpost giving us: “A critical vulnerability in Cisco’s software-defined networking (SDN) software could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to connect to a vulnerable data-center switch and take it over, with the privileges of the root user” (at https://threatpost.com/cisco-critical-nexus-9000-flaw/144290/), I suddenly realise that there is an inner demon with a pitchfork stabbing into my brain telling me that I am a pussy, I disagree! So here it is: “A message for the Pentagon IT department; Do you still have the password ‘Cisco123‘ on some of your routers? If so would it not be a great idea to change it before the Chinese Ministry of State Security and the Foreign Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation (SVR RF) decides to download your servers at their earliest convenience?

I know it is an annoyance, but with Cisco flaws the way they were it is merely a small consideration, and let’s not forget that at this stage no Huawei device was required to acquire the information on your servers. I personally believe that it is time to reward those who do not apply common cyber sense to be rewarded with limelight. I have had to clean up the mess of others for well over a decade and now it is time to give those people the exposure they deserve (my findings regarding Credit Agricole will have to wait for a few more days). When you consider that the flaw also hits the Nexus 9000 Data Centre Switch, a device that is according to their own site ‘Built for scale, industry-leading automation, programmability, and real-time visibility‘, as well as “operate in Cisco NX-OS Software or Cisco ACI modes with ground-breaking Cloud Scale ASIC technology“, and lets be fair, there will always be an issue, a device on such scale cannot be flawless, yet when such a flaw is clearly reported on a level this big and the media merely looks at accusations against Huawei and leaves actual dangers unreported, the integrity of the media has become too large an issue on a global scale.

The issue is twofold for me, the first is that Huawei was never a risk and even as I disagree with the dumb headed approach that the US had, I am very much on the side of Alex Younger (the apparent fearless leader of MI-6), he is merely stating that non-British equipment (in this case Chinese) could be an optional threat in the future. His issue is that this level of infrastructure must be British and he is not wrong, no nation is wrong to have high level infrastructure equipment (whether it is 4G or 5G) in national hands. That is the application of common sense (yet realistically speaking not always pragmatic or achievable). so when he stated last February ‘It’s more complicated than in or out,‘ he is actually spot on, no one denies that. Yet the Americans had their big boots, brainless and started accusations that cannot be proven, that is an issue! For the US it was all about the money and American technology is losing more and more headway, they are literally falling further behind on a daily basis. As I personally see it the direct consequence on iteration versus innovation technology. When the best innovative step is Samsung giving the consumer the ability to share power wireless (which is awesome), even me as an anti-Samsung person will admit that they hit the jackpot with that one. How sad have players like Apple, Microsoft, IBM, INTEL et al really become?

How much of a Scott Pilgrim must we become fighting all the tech companies in the world before we get told the direct truth by the media? How much shaming must we do to make the media make us the number one directive, not the number four option? and as I have been considering more and more to put my IP vision valued at $2 billion public domain and let them fight it out among themselves, basically I am just too tired to engage in another round of bullshit with these so called executives and VP’s who (with the exception of Huawei and Google) do not have a clue on what they are doing in technology in the first place.

The larger problem is not Cisco; it is security and identity management. Most corporations are close to 5 years late into implementing an actual non-repudiation system and that is partially because there is no real good system or good way to ensure non-repudiation, an issue that should have been addressed almost 10 years ago, but never was, I personally tend to blame complacency there. I personally believe that a drive to iteration prevented innovation to get us there, but that is merely my view on the matter and I am perfectly happy to be proven wrong on this specific part.

Dozens of options (I actually had another idea towards a new solution to applied solar technology) all having larger impacts in larger cities and pilot places like Neom City, what does it take for some of these players to wake up and smell the dangers of corporate death through marketing set towards iterative release?

 

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