but the ultimate decision will be made by germany’s president hindenberg–we mean steinmeier. sorry, wrong year. a minority government is also still possible but merkel would be forced to cobble together 42 votes for every decision if she were to govern with the green party and about 39 if she governed with the liberale party, the free democratic party.
german chancellor angela merkel is most likely to form a minority government with the green party as the head of the pro-biz “liberale” fdp party announced the party is withdrawing from talks. a second election is highly unlikely as this would most likely lead to an even more inconclusive election outcome. the fdp could reconsider or tolerate the centrist coalition. as apparently according to german law, merkel’s next step is to speak with germany’s president on monday.
since victor orban took over as PM of hungary his government and party’s loyalists (businessmen) have taken over most of the media. like the balkans, the heads of states in hungary and poland are overly sensitive to criticism and constructive feedback. so the solution is to either shut the media down, dispose of the offending journalist or make the offending media a state puppet like in croatia, serbia and poland. apparently the situation has progressed to a point whereby the US state department is willing to fund independent media in hungary.
robert mugabe yet another president for life on the african continent is now under house arrest. the military apparently seized the public tv channel to reassure the people and most likely also the world, that this action by the military is not a coup. watch the announcement here. last week the 93 year old mugabe fired his VP who then fled to south africa
now that the US government has proven that FaceBook, Google and Twitter collected hundreds of millions of pounds/euros/dollars (please choose one) from organisations connected to russia’s kremlin to divide and conquer the US, can we now please just forget about these companies? back in the 70s and the 80s, from what we’ve read, the tech industry was populated with people like bill gates — white christian dudes with poor social skills who got into computers because they were misanthropes. now the WASPY dude with a slide protector has been superseded by the garrulous non-christian with a hoodie. and now every college kid on the planet dreams of dropping out of school, moving to dreary san francisco (where the sun comes out for 6 weeks out of the year) and making billions while being driven to work in a google or facebook bus. we at a blog about whatever, quite like this article on the guardian newspapers’ website, which points out that silicon valley has replaced wall street as slimeball capital of the planet.
the US senate’s revisions of the house bill includes leaving in deductions for medical expenses and student loan interest. the senate version of the tax bill does not eliminate estate taxes but changes some provisions. we wonder what the compromise will look like. the announcement that the corporate tax cut might be moved to 2019 shook up the stockmarket worldwide. but what about FACTA? the GOP vowed to repeal this banking law that makes americans and US companies uncompetitive.
we spent an entire 24 hours examining virginia county by county. northam used the obama playbook of driving up his numbers in cities, the burbs immediately surrounding cities and college towns while holding down his republican challenger’s numbers in the rural areas. the dems did poorly across the board in the hinterlands. but held their apponent consistently below 65% with maybe a handful of exceptions. the libertarian candidate hyra won a respectable 1.2% and across the US won about 9 seats at the local level.
the startup scene in berlin has been hailed as vibrant. but the silicon reich has as yet to produce 1 innovation or incubate an innovative company. but it has managed to create a plethora of microserfs. startups favor hiring interns and contract workers and paying them around 660 EUR per month. prior to a new minimum wage law being introduced in deutschland in 2016, companies used to hire people on mini-jobs and pay them 450 EUR per month. the government covered the mini-jobbers health insurance. so it was almost like making 700 euros per month –roughly 800 US dollars. for east europeans that is like a windfall. but the allure of berlin is so strong it even roped in west europeans. in this der spiegel report a french woman chronicles her stint in the startup industrial complex that is berlin. where you can get free organic chips and (now) 660 EUR per months. since 2011 she has worked for 12 different startups–most of which have gone out of business. you can use google translator or babelfish to translate the article.
according to the bbc website, carles puigdemont, the former president of catalonia who left spain last week immediately after the regional parliament declared independence from spain. puigdemont and his fellow parliamentarians have been charged with sedition, rebellion (and a few other crimes). never in our lifetime did we think that the head of state of a western country would be charged with sedition.