+2"If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes. For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation." Luke 19:42-44. From the crest of Olivet, Jesus looked upon Jerusalem. Fair and peaceful was the scene spread out before Him. It was the season of the Passover, and from all lands the children of Jacob had gathered there to celebrate the great national festival. In the midst of gardens and vineyards, and green slopes studded with pilgrims' tents, rose the terraced hills, the stately palaces, and massive bulwarks of Israel's capital. The daughter of Zion seemed in her pride to say, I sit a queen and shall see no sorrow; as lovely then, and deeming herself as secure in Heaven's favor, as when, ages before, the royal minstrel sang: "Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is Mount Zion,...the city of the great King." Psalm 48:2 In full view were the magnificent buildings of the temple. The rays of the setting sun lighted up the snowy whiteness of its marble walls and gleamed from golden gate and tower and pinnacle. "The perfection of beauty" it stood, the pride of the Jewish nation. What child of Israel could gaze upon the scene without a thrill of joy and admiration! But far other thoughts occupied the mind of Jesus... (to be continued...) More
Little Knowledge Is Dangerous Before I begin my story let me introduce myself to you. My name is Subin Thomas and I am a nineteen year old boy studying my Engineering from The University of Queensland in the capital city of Brisbane, Australia. I emigrated from India-my motherland a year ago and shifted to Australia leaving behind my parents in India. Now I live with my uncle John my mother's brother. He is a 47 year old man and works as a Financial Accountant for a reputed company. We live in an apartment located quite next to the Brisbane river. In my leisure time this where I would spend most my time gazing at the beautiful sight. In our courtyard there is a mango tree which is expected to fruit this summer but some recent unseasonal rains have spoiled the prospects of eating fresh ripe mangoes. When I was in India my father would always bring plentiful mangoes for me when the season arrived and I would not hesitate and eat up to 4-5 mangoes a day! This mango tree gives me the nostalgia of the time I had with my parents. Our neighborhood is also good and the surrounding is quite clean as compared to my home in India. But keeping all the shortcomings aside I would always prefer India over all. My college is about half a mile from my house so I either walk or cycle my way through. It starts at around 8 am and I reach home by 5 pm. My uncle leaves for office at the same time and arrives back by evening. Surprisingly my Uncle prepares the dinner as he turns out to be a good cook as well. Out of the two house-keys one he had for himself and the other one for me. My house is near to a popular tourist destination Mt. Cootha about 5 miles away. It has the highest peak in Brisbane. I have been there twice for hiking. Once you reach the summit its a beautiful sight to behold. I have been to Mt. Tibrogargan as well, a 2 hour journey from our house. It was initially closed for hiking but made accessible to people since 2015. It is the tallest Glasshouse mountain accessible to public. My stay in Australia till now has been quite amazing except for one unpleasant day which taught me a lesson of my life to not to come to a conclusion unless well informed of the situation. The story goes this way........ There was something unusual about this day as I readied myself for college. The weather forecast warned of heavy rains today. Back home in India the weather reports were often false but here in Brisbane they are rarely proved wrong. Because of the rains the college shut down early today at around 3 pm. On my way back home rains poured heavily, luckily I carried an umbrella. As I reached half-way I felt as if I was being followed by a stranger. When I looked behind I could see a man in his mid forty's keeping up with me at every turn. So I hurried myself and made my way back home hastily. It was quite unusual as I had never been pursued before. I went to the balcony to see whether the man had followed me up to my house and to my relief there was no one. The first thing I did when I returned home was watch T.V and so switched it on, but because of bad weather there was no signal. I have been given some project from college so I decided to complete that and went to my room upstairs. Once I was done with it, I looked up at the watch and it was about evening. Uncle John was to return by now but there was no sign of him. I waited long enough but finally lost my patience. I tried to call him up on his cell-phone but there was no network. Perhaps he was busy with some work and might come home late tonight. I waited for some more time but to no avail. I took a short nap and when I woke up it was already past dinner time. It was getting late enough to be worried. I once again stepped into the balcony and looked down. Except for one street dog that was lying down miserably near the gate, there was not a soul to be seen anywhere. Rain water had puddled under the lamp-post. A breeze ruffled the mango tree in the courtyard and a few twigs fell down and broke. Thunder rumbled in the distance. Did I hear a soft knock at the door? I turned back. At first I thought I was mistaken by the thunder but then a second knock followed which confirmed someone was at my door outside. It was already midnight and I had someone outside my house. I wondered if it was my Uncle himself. In order to clear my suspicions I decided to let him open the door as I knew he kept a key for himself. Then came a third knock which proved that it was someone else rather than my uncle himself. I was terrified. I waited for some time but no more knocks could be heard. He must have given up I presumed. Whoever it was knew that I was alone and used the situation to his advantage. I recalled the incident on my way home when I was chased by a man and wondered if it was the same guy. I was worried if he would return back with some lock picking tools and so I again tried to call my Uncle and again there was some network issue. I faced similar issues while contacting the cops. The only thing I could no was pray that the stranger does not return. Then I was struck by an idea about setting up numerous booby traps across the house as a part of countermeasure. The first one was at the entrance door where I placed weights on top of the door kept slightly ajar ready to fall on the person attempting to pass through. These weights would make chiming sound once they fall down from that height alerting me of his presence. I even placed an electric water heater gadget on the door knob inside the house. This would heat up the doorknob on the outside of the house as well. Once the intruder grabs the doorknob in an attempt to yank it open it would surely burn off some of the skin on his hand giving him hell of a red mark and forcing him to either head to the hospital immediately to get the skin from his butt grafted onto his hands or he would at least have to use a different entrance to get into the house, depending on how long he held onto the doorknob. Then as intruder makes his way into the house he would trip over the fancy toys and nails spread all across To improve his chances of stumbling down I poured oil all over the floor and kept all lights switched off. Now all the traps had been set up. The only thing I needed to do now was wait until the intruder arrives. I waited in my room upstairs and stayed vigilant. Suddenly at around 3 am I heard some squeaking noises from downstairs. My heart started racing as I knew it was the intruder who had broken into my house. I hoped that he was neutralized after setting off all my traps. I screwed up my courage and headed downstairs to check up on the intruder. As I reached the spot I saw someone of my Uncle's stature knocked out unconscious on the floor. He was bruised from head to toe. All my traps played their part and I was successful in bringing him down. Coincidentally his attire was very much similar to my uncle’s or was it really a coincidence? I switched on the lights to see who it was and could not really believe my eyes as he turned out to be uncle John himself. I immediately lifted him up and placed him on the sofa. He was still in an unconscious state so I stayed beside him and I bandaged his wounds. I felt really bad as my tactics worked but not in my favor and my own uncle fell victim to it. It was about morning around 6 am when he called up my name while I was asleep beside him in the adjacent sofa. I woke up and was relieved to see him conscious. I felt very embarrassed and told him about what happened last night. I apologized to him for the ordeal he had been through. I discussed the whole incident with him which started with successive knocks on the door at around midnight. My uncle recalled that he phoned up in the neighborhood to check up on me. So it must have been the neighbor from the adjacent house. The revelation was not easy for me to digest. The whole intruder-thing was just my imagination. My uncle had to work overtime and that was the cause of delay. The whole time since I heard the knocks, I had been under the false impression of encountering an intruder. I thought to myself that it was about time that I stopped watching lot of action movies as it reflected on my behavior. The lesson I learned from the whole incident is that one must not draw a conclusion without proper evidence as they say 'A little knowledge is a dangerous thing'. More
+6Sites that make you choose really complex passwords that you won't remember is a recipe for rage. Let me choose my password the way I want. Adding a small security measure is fine, but going "Your password needs one capital letter, 4 numbers, one special character, one greek letter, one quasi-racial slur, an 'x' on both sides of the password, Dean Martin'...[Show All]s birthday as well as one Spanish onomatopoeia. Oh, it also must be at least 14 characters long." Yep, I'm totally gonna remember that when I come back to the site 3 years later. It's even more insulting when the site says your password is 'weak' despite using Arabic letters and a division sign. [Show Less]
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0Does Creating A State-Owned Enterprises Holding Company Is The Right Thing To Do? Rini Soenarno, The Current Ministry of State-Owned Enterprises (SOE) in Indonesia, has created a strategy that is considered to contribute the acceleration of development in Indonesia. In this way, the expected funds for development in Indonesia could be flowing swiftly. These plan are listed in the Roadmap 2015-2016 the framework of SOE called the state-owned holding. This strategies of financial development include many sectors of enterprises such as housing, mining, oil and gas (oil), toll roads, financial services, and food sector. (Marcell, 2016) Until this year, there are about 120 state-owned enterprises are divided into various business sectors such as information and telecommunications, financial services and insurance, mining and quarrying, professional services, and so forth. Several reasons have been formulated by the Ministry of SOEs on the formation of the holding. One of the reason is to strengthen and facilitate the capital investment of SOEs through a synergy between similar SOE to not always depend on the state budget. In addition, funds obtained will be channeled to productive sectors or rill with efficiently and integrated, so that it can be a driver of national economic locomotive to influence globally. (Pratomo, 2016) Enough with the plus side, the establishment of state-owned holding also raises cons. Cons that emerged was the result of the presence of several obstacles that must be resolved accordingly. One of the obstacles most basic is the lack of legal basis that should be consistent with the strategy is on the contrary to be opposed, especially in Act Number 19 of Article 1 of 2003 on State Enterprises, Law No. 5 of 1999 on Prohibition of Monopolistic Practices and Unfair Business Competition, and in Government’s Rules (PP) No. 44 of 2005 on the Administration of the State Capital Investment making SOE and other company, must be limited. So many rules that need to be further amended in order to support this plan, so it must be adjusted to market demand. (Son, 2016) Not only about the law, state-owned holding also reap the problem on their legal status, this issue does relate to the above contention rules. The legal status is not only effecting the companies but also involving employees and permissions. Status of the company, licensing, and standards of employees that have been achieved before the merger is likely to be lost. These risks who need to be well considered by the owners of the company. (Son, 2016) Benchmark Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the Malaysian holding company, acting as a parent of some state-owned companies for commercial purposes. The impact of this establishment is the increase The Added Value of Khazanah. Valuenya up to 3 (three) times within 10 (ten) years of the last, where in 2013 the treasury has a value of US $ 33.04 million, then which previously was only about US $ 10.63 million. Holding Company has now been run globally with a role as an investment holding company for the 11 industrial sub-holding, such as infrastructure, construction, health, etc. The success of the creation of the treasury caused by the sharing of risks or duties in accordance with a clear organizational structure. The divisions are divided into two (2) sections that will be between the board (representatives of government) as a regulator of the macro issues and regulations are directly responsible to the Prime Minister of Malaysia. The second part, the role of management under CEO acts to regulate the micro corporations. (Pranoto & A. Makaliwe, 2014) Based on the problems being faced between Indonesia with examples of cases in Malaysia in essence, this strategy implementation project deserves to be continued, but needed a clear legal status to divide each of the roles needed in these activities. Necessary human and system appoarch to invite other business entities Indonesia and analyze the form holding company, operating systems, as well as finding the ideal strategy in the practice of holding. Many things done by any measures that is expected to function as a way to create a holding company of the country. The hope of these holding companies that can provide great benefits to the Indonesian people and also be able to compete globally
+6Do you get involved with other people? Someone asks "What's the capital of Spain?", and in passing you can't help but blurt out the answer. You hear a mom berate and slap her children... C'mon...how can you not get involved...in life... More
+1Ramadi: Australian special forces helped retake Iraqi city Ramadi: Australian special forces helped retake Iraqi city THE AUSTRALIANDECEMBER 31, 2015 12:00AM SAVE PRINT Cameron Stewart Associate Editor Melbourne Members of Iraq's elite counter-terrorism service in the city of Ramadi after Iraqi forces recaptured it from the Islamic State jihadist group. Australian special forces played a key role in the recapture of Ramadi from Islamic State fighters, calling in as many as 1000 airstrikes and staying in real-time contact with Iraqi troops as they retook the city street by street. Australian military trainers from Task Group Taji were also responsible for training the Iraqi 76th Brigade, which played a major role in retaking the pivotal Iraqi city this week when it entered the former Islamic State stronghold from the east and south. While the government yesterday denied a US website report that 80 Australian special forces troops were embedded with Iraqi troops in Ramadi, about 110km west of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, The Australian understands that ADF special forces were in constant remote contact with Iraqi special forces as they advanced through the city. This allowed the Australian troops to have real-time tactical involvement in the street battle, advising the Iraqis from a remote location in keeping with the Australian mission to “advise and assist” rather than be fighting alongside Iraqi forces. Defence is today expected to detail the Australian military contribution to the defeat of Islamic State in Ramadi, the first significant military success for Iraqi forces against the terror group. It is believed the 80-strong Australian special forces team helped to direct from the ground as many as 1000 aerial strike missions of the US-led coalition in and around Ramadi in a co-ordinated bombing campaign over several weeks, which played a key role in the recapture of the city. The Australian forces are believed to have played an important role in aligning the ground assault by Iraqi forces with coalition air support during the advance into Ramadi. The airstrikes, which are likely to have included Australian FA/18 fighters, destroyed more than 420 defensive fighting positions and at least 85 Islamic State vehicles as well as causing the deaths of “significant” numbers of Islamic State fighters. In a briefing given a week before Christmas, the Australian Chief of Joint Operations, Vice-Admiral David Johnston, said it was now a matter of “when not if” Islamic State was defeated in Iraq. He said as of December 18, Australian special forces had called in more than 917 aerial strike missions, most within the vicinity of Ramadi. Iraqi troops raised the flag over the government compound in the centre of Ramadi on Monday after the last of the several hundred Islamic State fighters fled the city centre. The retaking of Ramadi, almost seven months after it fell to Islamic State, is the first time that Iraqi troops trained by the US and Australia have won a significant victory on the battlefield against Islamic State. It has raised hopes that Iraqi forces can progressively retake key Islamic State-held towns in Iraq, with preparations under way for an assault on Iraq’s second largest city, Mosul, which fell to Islamic State in June last year. A spokesperson for the Defence Department said reports that Special Operations Task Group personnel had been deployed in combat operations in Ramadi alongside the Iraqi Security Forces were incorrect. “A Special Operations Task Group of about 80 personnel has deployed to Iraq and is providing military advice and assistance to the Counter-Terrorism Service of the ISF,” the spokesperson said. “This includes remotely-based joint terminal attack controllers who provide support to the first Iraqi Special Operations Forces brigade of the Counter Terrorism Service. CTS is one of the lead units in the fight in Ramadi.” Australia is the second-biggest foreign contributor to the military effort on the ground in Iraq.
This capital city plans on banning cars by 2019... A newly-elected city council in Oslo, Norway, made the landmark decision to restrict all private vehicles from the capital's center, marking the first permanent ban of this kind.
+30This year the District of Columbia, the US's capital, voted on initiative 71, essentially decriminalizing marijuana for those in DC. However, Congress is now doing it's best to shut this down, completely ignoring the peoples voice. When will enough be enough?
+4BT shareholders benefit from taxpayers I would have thought a conservative party would endorse a competitive broadband market when they released BDUK (Broadband Delivery UK) in 2011. However the money funded by the taxpayer has gone to help BT monopolise the broadband market whilst increasing the value of the shares benefiting the shareholders. I think this is an utter disgrace and I believe the Tory government needs to do more to make the broadband network fairer, cheaper and competitive. The government has spent £530 million pound on BDUK to rollout faster a broadband service to the nation with fibre optic at its heart. Also a further £250 million of funds has been announced on the 25th of February. Almost all of the £530 million plus various local council funding and EU’s funding has given BT a total £1.2 billion of capital assets for free from the state. With the majority of money kindly handed over to BT to rollout fibre optic, it has given BT the upper-hand over the other broadband providers. Before fibre optic there was huge competition between internet service providers reducing the price for the consumer. BT are aiming for 66% of UK homes to have access to fibre however other broadband providers like Sky and TalkTalk only having slower copper network this will give the opportunity for BT to monopolise and wipe out competitors. Internet service providers like Sky and TalkTalk can pay for the BT fibre service from BTWholesale and sell it to customers as their own. However TalkTalk has issued a complaint to Ofcom due to its concern that the margin between BT Openreach’s wholesale price and BT’s retail price is so squeezed that other suppliers cannot sell the product profitably at the same price, thus restricting competition. The backbone of the UK society is the Small – Medium businesses and BDUK superfast broadband rollout should not be monopolised by BT. The government needs to increase competition and get more companies on board that will provide a better level of service and make it more cost effective for Small – Medium businesses, giving them the boost they need. Kirk Kus - @kirkkus More
+6The privatisation of the Royal Mail would have been great if its shares weren't so undervalued. Tax payers feel cheated, and RM prices may well rise. Mostly foreign countries will run the company. If another financial crisis hits the UK, the government might not be able to protect 'the on-price-goes-everywhere' principle or guarantee reliable post deliveries anymore. On the good side the RM will have more capital to stay competitive towards electronic commerce, and surely tax payers will be glad that they don't need to take over the pension deficit anymore. But the real beneficiaries are the investors that will enjoy substantial dividend payments. Lets see if the RM can keep up with growth expectations.