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rpannier's Journal
rpannier's Journal
March 2, 2024

Made In Macedonia: Americans Lose Millions Buying Fake Donald Trump Debit Cards

BELGRADE -- Last September, 86-year-old Ann Bratton thought she'd stumbled onto the investment of a lifetime.

An ad on one of the encrypted Telegram app channels the Nashville-area retiree had joined was offering debit-like "Trump cards" featuring the billionaire U.S. ex-president's image, each supposedly preloaded with $200,000. After years of forking out tens of thousands of dollars on souvenir banknotes, coins, and other Trump memorabilia, she calculated that she could quickly and easily turn a $6,000 investment into a $4 million nest egg.

What she didn't know was that behind the offer of "Trump Collection" cards was an opaque group of web-based vendors from a faded industrial city 8,500 kilometers away. And that city, in the Balkan country of North Macedonia, was already notorious for being home to legions of scammers who had fraudulently monetized Donald Trump's popularity in the United States and around the world.


But it's an open secret in this corner of the Balkans that a startlingly successful digital disinformation and fake news industry that emerged in the Macedonian city of Veles alongside the political rise of Donald Trump helped lay the groundwork for a thriving new business in fraudulent goods marketed through encrypted channels to Trump-style conservatives and "patriots" an ocean away.


**** as a note: If you read the article, you will see just how big a fool Bratton is (when she describes Trump in paragraph 7)

March 2, 2024

Five Stories From Europe You May have Missed

5. Romanian Presidency Tight-Lipped On Reports Of Iohannis Aiming For NATO Top Job

The Romanian presidency has refused to comment on media reports that Bucharest has proposed President Klaus Iohannis for the post of NATO Secretary-General. Quoting NATO diplomats, Bloomberg and Politico reported on February 22 that Romania had notified the alliance that Iohannis, who ends his term in December, was interested in the position, which incumbent Jens Stoltenberg is leaving in October. Asked for comment by RFE/RL, the Romanian presidency said it "does not comment on rumors." The United States, Britain, Germany, and France back outgoing Dutch premier Mark Rutte for the job. However, Rutte is viewed with skepticisim by eastern members like Romania and Bulgaria.


4. Police seize 72 firearms at home of French film star Alain Delon

Dozens of firearms have been seized from French actor Alain Delon's home, announced the Montargis public prosecutor's office in a statement
In all, "72 firearms and more than 3,000 rounds of ammunition" were seized from Delon's estate in Loiret, south of Paris, where "the existence of a shooting range" was also noted.
The veteran actor, 88, has “has no authorisation that would allow him to own a firearm”, said local prosecutor Jean-Cédric Gaux.
In a recent interview with magazine Elle, Anouchka Delon, the actor's daughter, explained that she "always goes with her bodyguard" to the family estate. According to her, her brothers walk around the house "armed", believing themselves to be "in the Wild West".


3. ‘It makes me so sad’: church reemerges from reservoir as Spain faces droughts

Magdalena Coromina tapped the hard ground with her walking stick and looked up at a church that was meant to be underwater. Six decades ago, when engineers had built the reservoir in which she stood, they had flooded the town of Sant Romà de Sau and drowned its buildings. The rains that slaked the region’s thirst had kept the ruins covered.
But that world no longer exists. Struck by a drought that has dried the reservoir to 1% of its capacity, the remains of the village have come back into view. Crumbling stone structures now sit on cracked soil among ashen plants. The church, whose spire used to poke above the surface during dry spells, today stands high above the waterline.
“It makes me so sad,” said Coromina, an 85-year-old from the nearby city of Ripoll who came to see the ruins on an unusually warm February afternoon. She remembered rain and snow during winters when she was a girl. “Now? Nothing.”
But as they wait for rain to fall and infrastructure to improve, Catalans are divided on how to share the water that remains. The dilemma has pitted locals, farmers and tourists against each other as they fight over a resource that is growing more scarce by the day.


2. Bulgarian Sanctioned By U.S., Britain For Corruption Elected To Leadership Role In Major Bulgarian Party

A Bulgarian lawmaker who has been sanctioned by the United States and Britain for alleged corruption, has been elected a co-president of the Movement for Rights and Freedoms at the party’s national convention in Sofia.

Delyan Peevski, a veteran member of parliament, was elected co-president of the party with Djevdet Chakarov, another veteran member of parliament and environment minister from 2005-09 when the Movement for Rights and Freedoms was in the governing coalition.

Peevski initially was the only candidate for president, but some members objected, prompting founder and honorary chairman of the party Ahmed Dogan to suggest Chakarov as co-president to please ethnic Turks. But it is clear to observers that Peevski is the party's main leader.

The move makes Peevski the first ethnic Bulgarian to lead the party, which has traditionally represented Bulgarian Turks and other Muslim communities in the country.


1. Daniela Klette: dog walker, dancer – and Germany’s most-wanted woman

To Anna Spiering she was simply another friendly dog walker, who greeted her with a smile whenever their paths crossed in the neighbourhood, but from whose snappy crossbreed, Malaika, her dog, Harry, knew to keep a safe distance.

That was until she saw Daniela Klette’s face on TV earlier this week. “I recognised her immediately,” Spiering said, pausing on a walk with Harry down Sebastianstraße, a street in Berlin’s Kreuzberg district once divided by the Berlin Wall, adjacent to the former guard-patrolled death strip. She said it was “bizarre now to think I was swapping small talk” with an alleged terrorist.

Klette – the last female member of the Red Army Faction (RAF) terror network still on the run until her arrest at her flat on Monday evening – was known by many dog walkers in the area not by her name or her notorious past, rather as the “owner of Malaika”.

She is suspected of involvement in at least 10 armed attacks and robberies, including a gun attack on the US embassy in Bonn in 1991 and the bombing of a prison in Weiterstadt in 1993.

February 23, 2024

Calvin Trump


February 20, 2024

The Cordone's are Raising Money for Trump... Maybe

I was watching Coffeezilla on youtube and he pointed to this:
There is no beneficiary listed on this gofundme. You can have a beneficiary if you raise money on someone's behalf. Though it only lists an owner. It has no beneficiary listed

Here's the video. The bit starts at about the 2min 35 sec spot.

February 19, 2024

Obviously she never asked me, because I wouldn't be at all upset

According to The Independent, Nikki Haley said she would pardon il douche because
“We’ve got to leave the negativity and the baggage behind. I don’t want this country divided any further. I don’t think it’s in the best interest for America to have an 80-year-old president sitting in jail and having everybody upset about it.”

I repeat, she never asked me and I wouldn't be upset
So... it's not everybody that would be upset if he were in jail

And by-the-way... It's ex-president

February 17, 2024

Five Stories from Europe You May Have Missed

5. RFE/RL Journalist Alsu Kurmasheva, Held In Russian Prison, Nominated For UNESCO Prize

The Czech Foreign Ministry said on February 16 that it and 22 other nations have nominated RFE/RL journalist Alsu Kurmasheva, who has been detained by security officials in Russia for more than 120 days, for the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano 2024 World Press Freedom Prize.

The prize, created in 1997, is an annual award that honors a person or a group of people who make an "outstanding" contribution to the defense and promotion of press freedom across the globe despite the "danger and persecution" they face.

Kurmasheva, a Prague-based journalist with RFE/RL who holds dual U.S. and Russian citizenship, has been held in Russian custody since October 18 on a charge of violating the so-called "foreign agent" law.

Despite spending some four months in custody, the U.S. State Department has yet to designate her as wrongfully detained as it has other U.S. citizens held in Russia.


4. Dover Port health body fears gangs of meat smugglers looking to bypass new post-Brexit checks

The Port of Dover could become a target for criminals smuggling illegal and diseased meat into the country under new post-Brexit plans that will involve lorries from the continent being checked 22 miles inland, the port’s health authority has warned.

The Dover Port Health Authority (DPHA) is now considering legal action against the government over its decision to end physical checks of imported meat at a post within the port. Instead, lorries will be directed to a new checking facility half an hour’s drive up the M20 at Sevington, Ashford.

Lucy Manzano, the head of the authority, said that as a port with the only inland border control post in the country, Dover could become a hotspot for criminal gangs trying to bypass checks.

She said: “These goods will now come through Dover without interception at the port, with the anticipation and hope that drivers will self-present at a facility 22 miles away.


3. EU deal on platform workers falls apart, pushing law into limbo

A group of member states blocked on Friday a law designed to improve the conditions of platform workers across the European Union, pushing the legislation to the brink of limbo.

The coalition was large enough to act as a blocking minority and derail the political agreement reached last week between the Council and the European Parliament.

Germany, the bloc's most powerful state and host of Delivery Hero and Free Now, chose to abstain, complicating the arithmetic to obtain the required level of support.

Greece and Estonia also abstained, while France, a vigorous opponent of the law, said it could not support the text on the table, Euronews learned through diplomats who spoke on condition of anonymity.


2. Spain’s conservative party fears defeat in its Galician heartland

Spain’s opposition conservative party faces the prospect of defeat in its leader’s home region, where it has governed for much of the past four decades, when voters in Galicia go to the polls on Sunday.

The People’s party (PP) won an absolute majority four years ago under the then regional president, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, who now leads the national party, but polls suggest its declining fortunes could open the door to a coalition of the Socialist party and the surging Galician Nationalist Bloc (BNG).

In a close-run race, however, the kingmaker may turn out to be Gonzalo Pérez Jácome, the mayor of Ourense, who has won attention by dressing as a Power Ranger and Superman in a single-issue campaign demanding the regional government repay “its historic debt” to the town.


1. Hungary’s president resigns in unusual setback for ruling party

The Hungarian president has announced her resignation over her decision to pardon a man convicted of helping cover up a sex abuse case at a children’s home as the controversy posed a challenge for Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán.

The pardon decision was made last year but only caught the public’s attention over the past days after a report by the local news site 444.hu, which was met with outrage, leading Hungary’s opposition to call for Katalin Novák to step down.

“I made a mistake,” Novák said in a televised address aired on Saturday, when she announced her resignation and issued an apology to any victims who felt she had not stood with them.

László Kövér, the speaker of Hungary’s parliament and another close Orbán ally, is expected to temporarily fill the president’s responsibilities until the parliament elects a new president.

February 11, 2024

This person holds an elected position in the Idaho legislature

I give you Rep Heather Scott, R-Idaho State Mental Hos... I mean... Blanchard, ID

An Idaho lawmaker wants to expand a law that bans cannibalism over fears about a rise in human composting.

Rep. Heather Scott, R-Blanchard, introduced a bill Thursday to expand the state’s cannibalism ban and told a legislative committee that she’s worried about the possibility that people are eating other people.

“This is going to be normalized at some point, the way our society’s going and the direction we’re going,” Scott said.


Scott said she has been “disturbed” by the practice of human composting, which has been legalized in several states as another option for dealing with remains that may be more sustainable than other burial methods and reduce a person’s carbon footprint. But she said outlawing composting would require overhauling rules for morticians, and so instead focused on deliberately giving another person human flesh.


Words fail me

February 2, 2024

Hershel Walker still has lots of cash from his failed senate bid.

Now you know why you can't find a coke or meth dealer. They're all around his home in Texas... I mean... Georgia

for the actual story:


January 17, 2024

Mar A Largo really is a Magical Place


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