July 10, 2015

Greek proposal, Yemen in a nutshell, hackers (again) and the Confederate flag

“The World in a Nutshell”
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Greece: No To Austerity They Said The Greek government finally submitted its proposal to the troika today. In a dramatic twist of irony the proposal submitted by the Greek government reportedly contains 12 billion euros worth of austerity measures (that’s 1.5 times as much as was in the proposal had the country voted “yes” in the referendum and nearly 10 times as much as what was asked from Greece in December). Greece is also asking for 53.5 billion euros in bailout funds to repair the damage to its economy. Europe has until Sunday to figure this mess out and open the banks. German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schauble had a plan of his own, offering US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew to swap Puerto Rico with Greece.
Yemen… So Confusing We Created A Separate Page For It
Saudi Arabia, the big brother Yemen never really wanted, has been bombing Yemen for the past 100 days this week. Yesterday, the UN announced a week-long humanitarian ceasefire that would allow much needed humanitarian aid to be delivered to the 80 percent of the population in need of emergency aid. Since the crisis is too complex to fit into an email, read Pnut’s guide to Yemen to help you figure it out.
Confederate Flag Debate: Republicans Very Confused
Just a day after agreeing to a Democratic amendment to an appropriations bill that would remove the Confederate flag from federal sites and only hours after South Carolina decided to remove the flag from the State House grounds, Republicans flip-flopped. They just couldn’t part ways with the overtly racist symbol (some claim the debate is really more “nuanced” than that). For now, the bill will be tabled until Congress can have an “adult” debate, according to Boehner… good luck!
Iran And Us Agree On Something: Don’t ‘Rush’ Us!
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif want everyone to know they’re taking their sweet time with the nuclear agreement and by no means will they be “rushed.” Don’t get frazzled now… take your time, it’s only been nearly 600 days since the talks commenced and you’ve only missed three self-imposed deadlines. 
China Opens Direct Line To US Computer Systems  Not a good week for US computer systems this week. The US Office of Personnel Management (OPM) announced that 21.5 million people had their Social Security numbers (SSN) and maybe their fingerprints stolen by Chinese hackers. The attack follows another one last month where 4.1 million SSNs were stolen. At this rate, it would save everyone time if the US government sent SSNs to China as they were being issued.
#Pnut4Prez: Trump-isms Keep Getting Better 
In what may be a worthwhile read for its entertainment value, the Washington Post interviewed the Republican presidential candidate. And in typical Trump fashion, he let it rip. Among his best lines:
  • “When [‘GOP elders’] know me, they’ll love me.” (You have your name on every building, you had TV shows and beauty pageants and you’ve run for office before… you’re right, no one knows you!)
  • “[Mitt Romney] became a frozen jellyfish.” (Come again?)
  • “[Reince Priebus] is going to lecture me? Give me a break!” (…because your remarks on Mexican immigrants were very PC.)
Entertaining Read: Donald Trump’s interview with the Washington Post
This Is What An Autocrat Does For Fun
Russian President and rumored demi-god Vladimir Putin offered to learn yoga to hang onto his friendship with visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi… in a desperate effort to show the world Russia isn’t going it alone. Modi is super into yoga these days, recently hosting a 35,000-person routine in Delhi as part of International Yoga Day. Putin admits he’s new to yoga, but there’s no chance this judo black belt can totally flop. Unfortunately, the Russians aren’t totally behind Putin on this one — the city council of Nizhnevartovsk recently banned yoga claiming it promoted “cultish” behavior.
Weekend Reads From The Team At the Pnut
  • “Go Set A Watchman” by Harper Lee is being published on July 14th. Her first novel in 55 years. It is based on the same characters of “To Kill A Mockingbird” so we will be catching up by rereading the old classic. If you remember the old book, start the first chapter of the new book here
  • Former Greek finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, is republishing his book “The Global Minotaur” now that he is done damaging the Greek economy. It is a good read if you want to peek inside his mind. Apparently he was “incited” (not encouraged) by his partner to write it. 
A bit of humor before the weekend.

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