Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Honduras: Proof (if it were ever needed) that Alvaro Vargas Llosa is a pitifully sad excuse for an intellectual

And change that bouffant coiff, puhleeze

Check out today's op-ed in the NYT from Alvaro Vargas Llosa, who must have suffered all his life from the question "Hey I know you...you're Mario's son, right?" and even after publishing several mediocre tomes of his own just can't escape. It really is an impressive piece of mental masturbation. We get his favourite obsession of Chávez-bashing front'n'centre (in a 639 word article Hugo is mentioned by name no less than ten times, including the title line) while other revelations include:

1) Zelaya actually planned to be deposed by the military and...get this...the military fell for it! Allyboy sez;
IN the weeks leading up to Honduras’s coup, President Manuel Zelaya, an ally of Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, knew what he was doing. In pushing the limits of democracy by trying to force a constitutional change that would permit his re-election, he set a trap for the military. The military fell for it, turning an unpopular president who was nearing the end of his term into an international cause célèbre.
Damn, I wonder if Mario's son considered the bullets that shot through the presidential motorcade on June 12th, just missing Zelaya's noggin...betcha that was part of the plan, too.

2) The coup was a popular move in Honduras (hmm...let's check those images again, yeah? My, what a popular fascist repression we have here...betcha that guy getting kicked, pushed to the ground and having an assault rifle prod him in the back is shouting ¡Viva Micheletti! right now). How Vargas Loser managed to conduct his opinion poll between Sunday and now is beyond me, but as he says, "the coup has popular support in Honduras", so if it's written in the NYT it must be true, right?

3) Then there's this pearl:
"Across the Spanish-language news media, the recurring image of the last two days has been that of Mr. Chávez and his allies working furiously for Honduran democracy."
Errrr....no. Allyboy's watching the wrong news channels. The single recurring image of the last two days has been the unanimous support for Zelaya from every single Americas country. The OAS has been front'n'centre on all screens, closely followed by anything Obama says. Only then does Chavez get airtime.

4) We then get Allyboy regurgitating the lies propounded by the kneejerk right and tipping his hand to his real agenda. This argument has been shot down in flames already.
"As the general elections scheduled for November began to creep up, Mr. Zelaya decided to hold a referendum with the ultimate aim of allowing him to seek re-election."
Let's say it again; even the US State Dep't, not normally known for its pally attitude to the Bolivarian Revolutionaries, understands that;
"..we're (talking) about conducting a survey, a nonbinding survey"
Do Gallup pollsters get arrested with rifles pointed at their tushes when they ask people for opinions? But even a numbskull like Alvaro Vargas Llosa can string a sensible sentence together sometimes;
"This is not what Honduras’s establishment, horrified by Mr. Chávez’s increasing influence, intended when it got rid of Mr. Zelaya."
No shit Sherlock. And they would have gotten away with it too, if it hadn't been for those pesky kids and their dog. The NYT note carries the title line "The winner in Honduras: Chávez". Wrong, wrong and a hundred times wrong, the winner in Honduras will be (not is...not yet) democracy and Latin America's self-esteem. At long last the whole region has the wherewithall to stand up to army bullies and their apologist pseudointellectuals such as Alvaro Vargas Llosa standard-bearer. Really, I have to ask myself "is that all they got these days?".

Alvaro, I've already given out this week's coveted award but when I did I hadn't read your ludicrous article. You are a throwback to the 1980's and don't deserve to get taken seriously in the 21st century. So first thing Monday morning next week, look out for a post with your name on it, yeah? DUMBASS.

Long Live The Capybara

The above photo is taken from today's "El Chigüire Bipolar" (The Bipolar Capybara) as it reports on yesterday's meeting between Uribe and The Hawaiian and the results of the game of Boggle they played .

I always feel a bit cheesy stealing a Chigüire photo and putting it up here, but it's only cos I want you guys to go over and check out his blog. It's the best Spanish language coverage of Venezuela by a long, long way. If you know the language you just gotta go there early and often, so here's the link; now use it.

Finally in Peru, a protest that Lima can't ignore

Y'see, what usually happens in Peru is that some protest starts in the provinces and everyone ignores it. So the protestors wait a while...then block a few roads...and then the government shoots them all and hides the bodies (according to those people tracking the case there are 61 people still missing from the Bagua massacre, by the way).

But today it was day one of a brand new protest and it's already captured the headlines of all Peruvian newspapers, TV and radio...because it's in Lima. Transport workers (buses, taxis etc) are striking to reject a new set of transport rules that are due to come into effect tomorrow, including all sorts of new fines for doing all sorts of naughty roadthings. The result is that 50% of Lima didn't get to work on time today and 46 protestors have been arrested (so far) by tear-gas shooting policia (nice video on that link).

If it were anywhere else in the country nobody would give a damn and you'd have to search hard for the merest hint of a story; in fact the strike is concentrated around the Lima/Callao conurbation and reports from other major cities (Chiclayo, Cusco, Arequipa, Trujillo etc etc) are that transport is either nearly normal or normal. But you'd never guess it from the front pages that are screaming about "Peru halted" and other types of Republic Of Lima balderdash.

Peru; a very silly country with a very silly capital city populated by very silly people.

Numbers are fun...honest

This wonk is duty-bound to share. Via the alwaysRSS Felix Salmon blog, here's a youtube put together by Nick Gogerty at his place (really, all hat tips due over there..please visit his blog as there's more fun on this subject). Anyway...get down to the swap spreads mambo.

You'll enjoy it even if you don't know about the subject...go on, hit that button.

Honduras: The World Bank "pauses", the coup is finished

I am the operator of my pocket calculator

Holy Moley, I never thought I'd see the day. Robert 'Kraftwerk' Zoellick (here pictured with Lula), is "working closely" with the OAS and as a result has "paused" lending to Honduras. This might sound rather meek to you, but to your humble LatAm moneyhead correspondent it's a damnation far stronger than anything Hugo could ever cook up.

This coup is official, total, utter toast and I wouldn't want to be in the usurper Micheletti's shoes next week. Here's Reuters;
WASHINGTON, June 30 (Reuters) - The World Bank has "paused" all program lending to Honduras following a military coup in the impoverished country, World Bank President Robert Zoellick said on Tuesday. "We're working closely with the OAS (Organization of American States) and looking to the OAS to deal with its handling of the crisis under its democratic charter," Zoellick told reporters, "In the process we have put a pause with our lending." (Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Editing by James Dalgleish)

Holy Moley The Sequel! Even the righties at The Miami Herald agree!

MAG Silver (MAG.to) (MVG) has a message for its shareholders

And the message is "You are very stupid, thanks for giving us your money."

Remember this post and this post, both from May 2009? The ones where we laid out all the inside stock sales going on at MAG Silver (MAG.to) (MVG) and saying "WTF?". What we have here is a bunch of directors that fist dumped that batch of shares on the market, then once the stock drops on the news that nobody wants to buy their badly run company any longer they grant themselves a whole new bunch of options at lower prices.

Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Harris, Jody Lynn Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 4,219 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Neal, Gordon Indirect Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 41,178 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Megaw, Peter Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 10,938 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 MacInnis, Daniel Thomas Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 12,344 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Carlson, Eric Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 15,469 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 White, Derek Christopher Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 9,961 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Hallam, Frank Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 46,348 $5.320
Jun 29/09 Jun 23/09 Jones, R. Michael Direct Ownership Options 50 - Grant of options 9,141 $5.320

This is also the company that insists its (now ex) suitor, Fresnillo (FRES.L), is the bunch of morons and that they are all smart and innocent and supercool and stuff. So let's look at how MAG.to has performed compared to FRES.L this year:

Hmmmm....spot the dumbass company...spot the smart company....tough call, eh?

On May 22nd I said "sell MAG Silver" when it was trading at C$6.18. Today is June 30th and the stock is C$5.16...and it's still a sell. Seriously, who's going to buy this PoS except for Fresnillo? MAG.to has no exit strategy lined up and because of that it hardly matters if they've found the lost city of El Dorado. In this article a week or so ago, Toby Shute of Motley Fool (Shute is the smart exception that proves the mediocre rule over there) nailed the situation; here's the last paragraph, but go read the whole thing, cos he's right.
There's a broader lesson to be learned here for investors in mining juniors. When your corporate exit strategy focuses on selling out to a major like Vale (NYSE: VALE) or BHP Billiton (NYSE: BHP) or Barrick Gold (NYSE: ABX), you might want to make sure that there's more than one likely bidder. Without that, you lose loads of leverage.

Honduras and the new dumbass experts

So everyone's suddenly an expert on Honduran constitutional law now. Wowsers, ya just never know what comes next in this life, do yaz? As the song goes, "La vida te da sorpresas, sorpresas te da la vida"

This post is by way of answering the total, moronic, fascist apologist dumbasses who refuse to see the basic, blindingly obvious fact that what went on in Honduras last weekend was an illegal coup d'etat. I mean you, dumbass you and your tinfoilhat brethren who decided to mail me with their wingnut views of the world and just straight flat couldn't be bothered to read up on a the real story before re-vomiting the lies of their rightieblog mentors that are feeding you pure drivel and passing it off as intelligent comment. You and your pals who can't even rub enough brain cells together to wonder why every single country in The Americas has condemned the illegal usurping of power in Honduras. All of them, from the righties (Uribe, García, Calderon) to the lefties (Fidel, Hugo, Evo) and all points in between. All of them...get it? ALL OF THEM YOU BUNCH OF DUMBASSES. And why? Cos they either know things about constitutional law or they have the phone number of the people that do. You have Michelle Malkin and a bunch of other dumbasses with blogs to massage what little ken you have and mold you into their little servant of hatred.

So you dumbasses win this week's coveted award; in fact, it might be the award of the year. Enjoy, dumbasses.

Clifford and the Big (Red) Dog

Back in 2008 Clifford Bélanger of ECU Silver (ECU.to) had 70,000 shares of the company to his name....and he sold 'em all. So there he was shareless coming into 2009, but then those nice guys at ECU.to let him jazz up 200,000 options at 0.375 this year to replenish his larder. Guess what? Yup, just a month after making them whole he's already selling out at any price he can.

Jun 29/09 Jun 24/09 Bélanger, Clifford Direct Ownership Common Shares 10 - Disposition in the public market -14,000 $0.620
Jun 23/09 Jun 22/09 Bélanger, Clifford Direct Ownership Common Shares 10 - Disposition in the public market -10,000 $0.600
Jun 23/09 Jun 22/09 Bélanger, Clifford Direct Ownership Common Shares 10 - Disposition in the public market -13,500 $0.610

Smart move, Cliff. And well, as a mining expert and consultant to the company he'll know more about just how many fleas come with this enormous dog than a pumphouse promo scamster attached to GATA. You can tell a fool to tell another bunch of fools anything you like, but you can't pull the wool over the eyes of a rockbanger about rocks. Clifford's taking da munneh and running. and you should too.

Chart of the day is......

...crude oil futures, daily candle.

This is the must-see chart today, because Yves Smith has the must-read post on oil. "IEA Sharply Lowers Oil Demand Forecast", in which it's clear that any fear of a supply crunch is now over. Just think of all those tankers moored off Rotterdam and Biloxi, dudes. Finally, note Smith's comments about anything unbullish being kept away from the headlines in MSM right now.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Honduras Photoshow

In Honduras, first you take a photo like this.....

...then you catch them doing this.....

...and then suddenly you're the target.

You just know this new government is going to be free and fair with everyone, don't you? I'm glad to say that the AP snapper in the picture, Dario Lopez-Mills, is reportedly unharmed (but his lost his memory chip somehow). The snap was taken by his Reuters colleague Oswaldo Rivas, as wisely these dudes are travelling in pairs right now.

A round of applause for some brave and often unsung guys, the photojournalists. More photos of the "calm streets of Honduras" today.


Honduras: Lula and PE are right, the WSJ is way wrong

"Micheletti, You Aren't My President" (signed, The People)
(On the streets of Honduras today

Here follows a very smart comment left by reader PE in the comments section of this previous post. Read carefully and send it to that WSJ dumbass O'Grady, because either she's ignorant about the real background and spouting crap or she knows about it and prefers not to address it. Either way she and all the other coup apologists are 100% wrong. This is not about whether Zelaya is or isn't a good President; it's about what Lula da Silva said today;
"We can no longer accept in Latin America that some want to solve their problems of power through a Coup because we cannot accept that some see solutions for their country without democracy or free and direct elections."
Exactly, Lula. Exactly. Here's PE's comment:



I think there's alot of confusion about the vote Zelaya proposed. I'd like to direct your attention to a transcript released yesterday by the American State Department:
Specifically, the section where a reporter wonders whether the coup was justified constitutionally. The State Department official provides the best english-language response & summary of events I've seen yet:

"Yeah, but now you're invoking the -- I'm sorry, but now you're invoking the constitution to return him. So did you think that what he was doing was in line with the constitution?"

"No, but there's a big distinction here because, on the one instance, we're (talking) about conducting a survey, a nonbinding survey; in the other instance, we're talking about the forcible removal of a president from a country. So I think we can distinguish between those terms -- those two in terms of what's constitutional and what might be left to institutions.

But I think what's important to remember about the survey is that it was just that. It wasn't even a formal vote. It was a NONBINDING SURVEY.

And the issue of whether it was legitimate or illegal did not revolve around the survey itself. It revolved around who conducted it and whether or not this could be conducted by the government and which institution in the government could conduct it, and whether or not as it's being conducted state security forces could be used to both manage and secure the equipment that was being used for the survey and provide security.

And that's where the divide occurred within Honduras. It was about who conducted this survey, with several institutions in Honduras insisting that the Honduran Government could not conduct it, at least not in the way that President Zelaya had suggested."

Honduras: Is the OAS about to grow a pair?

The Organization of American States (OAS) has often been criticized as being an all-show-no-go type of body, talking a good talk but not having the teeth to get anything done.

That might just change tomorrow. Following on from the strongly-worded statement from the OAS yesteday (the fact the declaration included the words "coup d'etat" in the first line is very significant), tomorrow Tuesday sees an emergency meeting of all 34 members of the OAS. If, as many now expect (perhaps 'hope' is wiser) the OAS hands down a "reinstall Zelaya or Honduras gets kicked out" message to the usurpers currently pretending to run the shop it may mark the moment when the organization gets itself some cojones at long last. From there, it will be fun to watch just how much leverage the OAS gets with bigger players such as the UN. Honduras loses its seat there and it's all over for the milicos.

Whatever happens, tomorrow will a key day in all this Honduras coup d'etat malarkey. Watch this space.

Argentines are good at hacking

When on the campaign trail last month, Nestor Kirchner had quite a few pops at Argentina's best-selling daily newspaper, Clarin. There's no love lost between the two sides and his catchphrase was "¿What's up, Clarin..are you nervous?" in allusion to the beating he'd give his enemies at the polls on June 28th.

So last night some geek hacked into the main Peronist (PJ) party website and although the page is now down (click thru and get 404 right now) we got the screenshot. Here's the message left on the front page for all to see (translated underneath).

What's up Nestor, are you nervous?

What you reap is what you sow....


The Republic (goodbyekirchner (AT) gmail (DOT) com)

PS: What's up Nestor, have you been hacked?

Honduras Coup: The obvious missing from English language coverage

It's difficult to believe how much crap I've waded through this morning, written in English about Honduras and actually debating whether what's been going on is a coup or not. Let's be clear:

  • When a country's president is woken up at 1am by soldiers firing shots into his house, it's a coup.
  • When that president is bundled into a waiting aircraft and flown out of the country against his will, it's a coup.
  • When the army closes down TV and radio stations, shuts off power supply and orders an immediate 48 hour curfew across the nation, it's a coup.
  • When a fake letter of resignation is used in parliament to justify the transfer of power, it's a coup.
  • When the first thing said by the abused president to the press is "I've have not resigned and this is a coup", it's a coup.

So having established the obvious, let's also note that despite what you might have read in your morning newspaper or seen on your morning TV screen, sticking a gun into the face of a president is not democratic. It's a freakin' coup, ok? It's a subtraction from freedom, not an advance, you stupid idiot O'Grady. Also, let's note in passing that it's not just "Clinton and Fidel" that are calling this a coup d'etat, it's every single country of The Americas, from Canada to Chile and all points in between. All of them, no exceptions. And while we're at it, that list includes places like Spain, France and even (perhaps bizarrely) China. They have all condemned this military coup d'etat, have called for President Zelaya to be reinstalled as the country's rightful and democratically elected head of state and have called what happened over the weekend by its rightful name: A COUP.

Anyone who still debates this is an official dumbass. The end.

Petaquilla Minerals (PTQ.to): "About the company...."

CEO Fifer with another crook

Part of Fifer's wardrobe

Latin America's worst gold mining junior, Petaquilla Minerals (PTQ.to), currently poisoning first growth rainforest without any sort of environmental approval and illegally employing its staff, put out another BS news release this morning. Those of us that read a lot of PRs tend to skip the regulatory bits at the end of the releases...y'know, the bits about "forward looking statements" and "about the company" that come with nearly all such missives. But in the case of PTQ.to it's well worth looking to see how the "about the company" part has changed over the years.

For example, in today's PR the company states:
"Full commercial production is expected to occur in the second half of 2009."
Which, since we're at the end of June right now is understandable. I mean, how they gonna start up a mine in the next 48 hours? But still if we compare it to the PR dated April 9th, PTQ said at the time
"....the processing facility will reach its full rated capacity of 2200 tonnes per day in June 2009."
So two months ago they said "June 2009", and now they say "second half of 2009"? Hmmmm.... BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE! Let's check back a bit further and see what this bunch of bullshit liars said on November 28th 2008.
"Petaquilla Minerals Ltd. is an emerging gold producer scheduled to bring its 100%-owned Molejon Gold Project into production in the latter half of December 2008."
Here's July 2008
"..Petaquilla Minerals Ltd. is an emerging gold producer scheduled to bring its 100%-owned Molejon Gold Project into production in 2008."
Here's January 2008
"Petaquilla Minerals Ltd. is an emerging gold producer scheduled to bring its 100%-owned Molejon Gold Project into production in fiscal year 2008."
Here's July 2007
"Petaquilla Minerals Ltd. is an emerging gold producer scheduled to bring its 100%-owned Molejon Gold Project into production in the third quarter of 2007."
What about January 2007?(this is a cute one)
"....The progress made at the project has reaffirmed management’s original schedule of performing the first gold pour in July 2007."
Anyone notice a pattern? Not the most difficult one in the world to spot, is it? If the fact that PTQ.to is run by crooks comes as a shock to you, please do yourself a favour and never invest in junior mining companies. Ever.

Chart of the day is.....

...the results for the Buenos Aires lower house elections, with 90% of ballots counted.

Nestor Kirchner conceded defeat last night with 87% or so of ballots counted. "We lost by very little", he said. That might be so, but the defeat was a shock and marks the end of the Kirchner's governmental rule in Argentina.

As well as watching Kirchner lose out to Francisco de Narváez, we saw the Kirchner's "FPV" (front for victory) party, part of the wider PJ umbrella, lose absolute control in the lower and upper house.

Winners last night were Carlos Reutemann, who won through in Santa Fe and will now make his run at the top job in 2011. Equally, Veep Julio Cobos (often known by his second name 'Cleto') won well in his Mendoza province and will make a run at the top job in 2011. Finally, via De Narváez, Mauricio Macri, Mayor of the city of Buenos Aires, is now in a strong position to make his move.

Problem 312: Cyclic Quadrilateral, Side extensions, Tangents

Proposed Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 312.

 Problem 312: Cyclic Quadrilateral, Side extensions, Tangents.
See also:
Complete Problem 312
Collection of Geometry Problems

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Honduras Coup: the OAS Statement

A good, strongly worded statement from the Organization of American States this evening, roundly condemning the coup d'etat in Honduras. Here's the link and here's the text;

June 28, 2009

The Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) adopted Sunday a resolution strongly condemning the coup d’Etat in Honduras and demanded the immediate and unconditional return of President José Manuel Zelaya Rosales to his constitutional duties.

The Permanent Council of the institution held a Special Meeting at the request of OAS Secretary General, José Miguel Insulza, who took part in the debate at the Council. Mr. Insulza is currently traveling to Nicaragua to take part in the Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Central American Integration System (SICA), which starts Sunday, with the goal of carrying out all necessary consultations.

The Permanent Council also called a Special Session of the OAS General Assembly, to be held at the OAS Headquarters in Washington, DC, on Tuesday, June 30, 2009.

The resolution adopted by the Permanent Council reads as follows:


CONSIDERING the grave situation taking place in the Republic of Honduras as a result of the coup d’etat against the government of President José Manuel Zelaya Rosales, which has produced an unconstitutional alteration of the democratic order, which the Permanent Council rejects and repudiates;

CONCERNED with the break-down of the constitutional order in the Republic of Honduras;

REAFIRMING the importance of strict adherence and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of other States;

REITERATING the principles established in the Charter of the Organization of American States and the Inter-American Democratic Charter on the strengthening and preservation of the democratic institutional system in member states, and

RECALLING CP/RES. 952 (1699/09) of June 26, 2009, relative to the situation in Honduras,


1. To condemn vehemently the coup d’état staged this morning against the constitutionally-established Government of Honduras, and the arbitrary detention and expulsion from the country of the constitutional president José Manuel Zelaya Rosales, which has produced an unconstitutional alteration of the democratic order.

2. To demand the immediate, safe and unconditional return of President José Manuel Zelaya Rosales to his constitutional functions.

3. To declare that no government arising from this unconstitutional interruption will be recognized.

4. To instruct the Secretary General of the OAS to urgently attend the meeting of the Central American Integration System (SICA), that will take place in Managua, Nicaragua, and in accordance with Article 20 of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, to carry out all necessary consultations with the member states of the Organization.

5. To vehemently condemn all acts of violence and especially the reported arbitrary detention of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Patricia Rodas, other Ministers of Government, as well as the Mayor of San Pedro Sula, and associated individuals, and to demand that their physical safety and security be respected and that they be released immediately.

6. To immediately convene a special session of the OAS General Assembly to take place at the headquarters of the Organization, on Tuesday, June 30, 2009, to take whatever decisions it considers appropriate, in accordance with the Charter of the Organization of American States, international law, and the provisions of the Inter-American Democratic Charter.

7. To instruct the Secretary General to transmit the resolution to the Secretary General of the United Nations.

Graphic organizers Interactive Mind Map

Graphic organizers are visual representations of knowledge, concepts or ideas.
Click the figure below to see the Graphic organizers Interactive Mind Map.

 Graphic organizers Interactive Mind Map.
See also:
Graphic organizers Interactive Mind Map

Honduras Coup: Check out the false resignation letter

And how do we know it's a set-up? Check the date, Thursday 25th June! There's more chance that Michael Jackson signed this piece of BS than Manuel Zelaya.

(click for sharper image)

Proof this coup will fail...the people leading it are teh stoopid.

The Honduras Coup: Obama and Clinton say the right things

Thanks to reader PE (in the comments section of the previous post....thanks dude), your humble correspondent gets to hear about this page at HuffPo that has been liveblogging the emergency OAS meeting. Here's what The Hawaiian and Hillary (esp good) had to say for themselves:

President Obama:
"I am deeply concerned by reports coming out of Honduras regarding the detention and expulsion of President Mel Zelaya. As the Organization of American States did on Friday, I call on all political and social actors in Honduras to respect democratic norms, the rule of law and the tenets of the Inter-American Democratic Charter. Any existing tensions and disputes must be resolved peacefully through dialogue free from any outside interference."

Sec. of State Clinton:
The action taken against Honduran President Mel Zelaya violates the precepts of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, and thus should be condemned by all. We call on all parties in Honduras to respect the constitutional order and the rule of law, to reaffirm their democratic vocation, and to commit themselves to resolve political disputes peacefully and through dialogue. Honduras must embrace the very principles of democracy we reaffirmed at the OAS meeting it hosted less than one month ago.

IKN9 out now

Subscribers should by now have received The IKN Weekly, issue nine. We've had no glitches in delivery for the last few weeks but if you don't get yours, send me a mail, yeah? All problems smoothed out to order.

The Honduras Coup D'Etat: Unconfirmed Reports

UPDATE: Check this post at Plan Colombia and Beyond for political fallout and good links.

1. The state TV channel
was raided and taken off the air by troops at the same time as Zelaya was arrested.

2. The military wasn't taking any chances with the presidential arrest, apparently. No less than 200 troops turned up at the doors of the Presidential palace to take Zelaya away.

3. Unconfirmed reports state that Zelaya is now en route for (or even arrived in) Costa Rica. (Update; now confirmed...Zelaya said on arrival in Costa Rica that he was kidnapped and guns were pointed at his head and chest as he was led away).

4. The wife of the President has said (and this one is confirmed as it went out on the Telesur TV channel), "They have delivered a coup and have ignored Honduran democracy.....We will stay here fighting and sending a message of peace but also of strength.....they have divided my family in the same way as they want to divide our country."

5. Reports now place a growing crowd of Zelaya supporters gathering at the gates of the Presidential palace.

I've noticed a sudden surge in people arriving at the blog from IP addresses inside Honduras. I'd be happy to receive and re-print any comments or observations you might have from inside the country without any sort of editing. If you prefer to write in Spanish I can translate.

Me di cuenta que hay bastante gente ahora llegando al blog desde Honduras mismo. Si vds quieren mandar observaciones desde tu punto de vista les publicaré en el blog. Tambien puedo traducir si prefieren escribir en castellano.

email: otto.rock1 (AT) gmail (DOT) com

Honduras Coup D'Etat: Chavez speaks

My translation of the direct quotes given by Hugo Chávez, ally of President Zelaya of Honduras, in this report. I've kept the translation as literal as possible so there may be some phrases that don't sit perfectly in English, but they should be comprehensible enough.

This situation may become serious quickly.


"To the coupmongers we say, "we are ready for action". These are no empty words. We have already started to mobilize. This coup will be defeated by the people of Honduras and by those of us that are outside of Honduras but equally feel ourselves to be Honduran.

"The Yankee empire has a lot to do with this. I will call the US President so that he speaks on this issue in the same way as we do from the depths of our soul. They look at us as if we were an operations base of the Empire; we are not.

"You know they call us coupmongers for the military action of February 4th, which was a patriotic military action against the bourgeois. This is the reverse.

"I call upon the soldiers of Honduras. We see them running, they are running without spirit. Please Lord don't let them use their weapons against their own people. The are men of the people, ordered by officials that also come from the people but have lost the notion of citizenry. They (the soldiers) are nearly children with guns in their hands, without conscience.

"There are some old troglodytes behind the troops, using them. You don't see a single general in the streets. They're in the barracks, well-protected.

"Now those soldiers are going to find out what a people is...the people have started coming out on to the streets. They (the coup leaders) made their move in the early hours of the morning, in a cowardly manner.

Chavez said he had called the chancellor of Honduras, Patricia Rodas who "was surrounded; they took away her bodyguards and she is now under detention. She is trying to make contact with the social movements, she is very brave and dignified. We understand that the social movements have begun to mobilize but they have no weapons. The troops commanded by the coupmongers have the weapons."

UPDATE: Full Honduras coverage on this link

Honduras coup d'etat: President Zelaya arrested by military

The election vote started on time this morning, but immediately afterwards President Zelaya was arrested by Honduran military and taken to a nearby airbase from where it's thought he's now being transported out of the country.

Here's a link to the English language Google news page keyword "Honduras" so you can keep up with happenings as they happen. Here's a typical offering right now from UPI:

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras, June 28 (UPI) -- Military troops arrested Honduran President Manuel Zelaya Sunday before a scheduled referendum on presidential term limits.

Soldiers surrounded the president's house and then took Zelaya to an airbase, the newspaper El Heraldo reported on its Web site.

Zelaya wanted to seek a second term next year. By law, the Honduran leader, elected in 2006, is limited to one term in office.

Zelaya told a Spanish newspaper last week he suspected a military coup was in the making. The president's prediction came amid controversy over his firing of the head of the Honduran armed forces.

It's called a military coup, people. Welcome to the 1980's. And if you're wondering along the 'cui bono?' line of thought it should take you about a nanosecond to work out the right answer. Jeesh, wouldn't it be great if you Northies just left us alone for once?

UPDATE: Boz knows more about Honduras than I and over at his blog is following developments closely. Here's his latest post and he's also updating via twitter (link on his page).

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Angles 45, 90, 135 degrees, Theorems and Problems

Click the figure below to see the Angles 45, 90, 135 degrees, Theorems and Problems Index.

 Angles 45, 90, 135 degrees, Theorems and Problems.
See also:
Angles 45, 90, 135 degrees Theorems and Problems
Collection of Geometry Problems

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

USA to invade Andorra

Nobody tells me these things exist. It's been around for a year apparently, but reader ID just mailed it over today.

Maria Belen Shapur: The photo of Mark Sanford's Argentine lover

Maria Belen (for it is she)
click to enlarge

By way of stooping low and indulging in a bit of shameless, superficial weekend tittle-tattle, here's a shot of Maria Belen Shapur, the Argentine lover of South Carolina dude Mark Stanford, as taken from a TV report she did from NYC in 2001 when reporting on the aftermath of Twin Towers/911. Her fledging career as a Teevee talkinghead never took off, apparently. Anyway, you can see the whole video with her head and her lips moving and all that jazz by clicking through here and scrolling to the bottom.

At the time her last name was reported as 'Chapur', not Shapur. Now is it just me, or is it a bit suspect to have an Argentine resident in the USA with an accidentally mis-spelled last name?

UPDATE: It's all so obvious now! Thanks to the insight offered by Cheryl Williams, the Love & Marriage expert at The Charlotte Examiner, we finally understand the reason why Mark Stanford was cheating on his wife and lying to everyone else. The dude was in fact nailing his piece of Latina floozey BECAUSE HE IS A CHRISTIAN. Here's Cheryl with the enlightenment:
"Governor Stanford has discovered ...... being a Christian does not mean that you will never fall from grace. On the contrary, people of faith are just as vulnerable as anyone else when it comes to affairs of the heart. In a way, they may be even more vulnerable…due to their level of compassion, understanding and desire to help others."

UPDATE 2: Oh how boring....turns out that photo might not be her after all. So much for my weekend gossip sleaze...

Forget update 2...that's her

Honduras News

1. Prez Zelaya has thanked the OAS (head honcho Insulza), Mercosur (head honcho Lula I suppose, but don't tell the Argentines) and ALBA (head honcho Hugo, I suppose) for the support offered. The OAS has also resolved to send an overseeing mission to the country immediately. Right now the calls are for tomorrow's vote to be suspended, but there's still no clear resolution.

2. Boz has a couple of good posts that sum up the situation nicely-concisely. Read part one here and part two here. And methinks we'll get a further update later today so maybe just going to Boz's main page is the best idea.

3. The Mex Files also puts in a very informative post (RG wrote it...normal high standard), giving background to Zelaya and the people that oppose him.

The South America Swine Flu Sweepstakes Update 27th June

Here's the updated chart.

Click to enlarge

Chile stretches its lead again, to 6211 cases. Argentina zooming up towards 2,000 now and already has 26 deaths from the disease...plenty of McDs in Buenos Aires, folks. Peru has just put on a spurt and added 100 cases in the last 24 hours, but still can't peg back Brazil for third place.

Meanwhile, down at the foot of the table Colombia has added just 3 cases in the last few days and sinks to the bottom. No winter + no addiction to fast food = living la vida loca. Frankly you have more chance of dying from false positiveness than you do from the pandemic.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Problem 311. Circle Inscribed in a Semicircle, Chord, Diameter

Proposed Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 311.

 Problem 310: Circle Inscribed in a Semicircle, Angle.
See also:
Complete Problem 311
Collection of Geometry Problems

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

The Friday OT: The Whizzo Chocolate Company by Monty Python's Flying Circus

I thought about embedding a Michael Jackson tune, but as Ten Percent beat me to it with the best MJ track of all time (the awesome 'Blame It On The Boogie', go watch it on this link) there was little point.

So here goes with a triple bill of top Python taken from 'Live at the Hollywood Bowl'. First up is 'Whizzo Chocolates' (one of the finest sketches ever and often overlooked), then the wonderfully wonderful 'Albatross' (dedicated as always to Paddy Anderson...bless him) and finished off with 'Nudge Nudge'.

Remember; if we took the bones out it wouldn't be crunchy. Enjoy.

Steiner-Waldorf Education Mind Map

Click the figure below to see the Steiner-Waldorf Education Interactive Mind Map.

 Steiner-Waldorf Education Interactive Mind Map.
See also:
Steiner-Waldorf Education Interactive Mind Map
Collection of Geometry Problems

Steiner-Waldorf Education Index

Click the figure below to see the Steiner-Waldorf Education Index.

 Steiner-Waldorf Education Index.
See also:
Steiner-Waldorf Education Index.
Collection of Geometry Problems

Honduras: "Coup in Progress"

Thanks Bina; you knew I'd steal it one day

An update on yesterday's post. The Honduras delgation to the United Nations has just declared there is "A coup d'etat in progress" in the country. The delegation says that "there is an attempt by some sector of Honduras society to overthrow President José Manuel Zelaya."

Meanwhile, the man in the centre of the supposed revolt, the head of the joint armed forces General Romeo Vásquez, told reporters today that the political situation in the country "is still difficult, but can be resolved through dialogue". He also explained the continuing presene of troops on the streets of the capital Tegucigalpa were due to said "difficulties". This, for me, is the kind of talk used by military chiefs that suddenly smell the political balance of power tipping their way.

It also fits in with Honduran opposition congressional moves to try and force the president to resign, all with the backdrop of Sunday's constitutional referendum that (if it goes ahead) will decide whether presidents will be allowed a re-election. Congress was apparently about to vote in favour of the destitution of its president but then both opposition and government members of parliament "received calls" and the final vote did not take place.

All in all, it seems that the death of Michael Jackson may be useful to the USA after all, carpe diem and all that. Also it seems like a step back in time to when Thriller was number one and military coups were all the rage this side of the Rio Grande. I mean, what would the US gain from having a Central American nation controlled by a military junta surrounded by countries with leftist governments, anyway.....?

UPDATE: Here's a comment from someone on the ground in Honduras that was just left in the comments section...worth adding here, I reckon. Thanks for the words, Wendy.
Wendy M Flood in Honduras said...

I am a Canadian expat living in Honduras.... I just wanted to clarify what Sunday's referendum...as you say "if it takes place" is really about... I notice you have stated it's "to decide whether Honduran President's will be allowed a re-election"... This isn't exactly the case..it's actually to decide whether the country will give the President the right to be able to change the constitution in any way he sees fit. ie to give him a "carte blache" to rewrite the Honduran constitution....many believe this means he will seek to remain in power perpetually, as his cohorts Chavez and Castro have done. This is what all the protests are about. None of the people want this. The Supreme Court has ruled the referendum illegal, has told the military not to comply with President Zelaya's attempt at a referendum on Sunday.
We'll see what happens.... He was able to push thru the ALBA agreement against the wishes of the people of Honduras...... Unfortunately many people here, will vote for whoever pays them the most.... I believe the going rate for Sunday's referendum is the equivalent of $26US.


Trading Post (outpouring of grief edition)

Ecometals (EC.v) up 55% at $0.155 on the news that it's going to do some drilling in the Zarza region of Ecuador. One way or another, I reckon buyers today are in for a religious experience. Betcha 99% of them don't know what terms like "reverse stock split" or "re-pricing of options" really mean. Totally untouchable by anyone with an idea of how microdot junior gold miners often try to separate you from your moolah, which means that 10% of the Canadian retail public will not be interested in this company. Caveat emptor writ large.

Dynasty (DMM.to) up 1.4% at $3.75 and a bit of volume this week in this genuine value Ecuador mining stock. There have been some rumblings on the local and national political front, but almost exclusively from people that don't know what they're talking about. I'll be going into more detail in IKN9 out Sunday.

Crystallex (KRY) down a point at $0.21. I'll be talking a little about this stock in Sunday's IKN Weekly, too. Should be fun.

Fortuna Silver (FVI.v) UNCH at $0.91 on low volumes. Y'know, I really, strongly suggest that you buy some of the stock in this company as soon as you possibly can.

Caerus Resource (CA.v) down 8% at $0.46. Did you know the verb "caer" in spanish means "to fall"? DYODD, suckaz.

Appleton Exploration (AEX.v) down 8.3% at $0.165. My oh my, wasn't Karl lucky with the timing of his sales?

Problem 310: Circle Inscribed in a Semicircle, 45 degree Angle

Proposed Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 310.

 Problem 310: Circle Inscribed in a Semicircle, Angle.
See also:
Complete Problem 310
Collection of Geometry Problems

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

IKN makes Vanity Fair

To print our poems, the propulsive cause,
Is fame; the breath of popular applause.
Robert Herrick (1591-1674)

Thanks to reader GMR for the headsup on this.

Well blow me down and call me Ethel, this humble corner of cyberspace has made Vanity Fair! Check out this article on that dude Allen Stanford (it's really quite good indeed), but here below is the excerpt that has the author Bryan Burrough mistakenly calling IKN "popular" (but why he thinks it's snarky round here is beyond me......). I'm glad to say that Alex Dalmady get far more mention (cos he's the guy that really deserves the laurels, in the end). Anyway, here's the text:

"...Dalmady found himself returning to the Stanford Web site. In the interim, the Madoff scandal had hit, and his curiosity soon turned to suspicion. “It became obvious,” Dalmady wrote. “No one was looking at stuff like this. The S.E.C. had its head up its butt. So I dug deeper and put some numbers on a spreadsheet—took me about 30 minutes. It just got worse. Where was the portfolio? What were they invested in? [Twenty percent plus] returns on their hedge funds? No way. Outperforming the S&P in stocks? No way. With 30 percent deposit growth [i.e., money constantly coming in]? No way.”

"Stanford Financial, Dalmady judged, had to be a fraud. He decided to write up his conclusions in an article and offered it to an old friend who edited a Venezuelan financial magazine called Veneconomy, which published it at the end of January. At first, the piece caused little stir. Titled “Duck Tales,” it was front-loaded with complex financial analysis; Stanford Financial wasn’t even mentioned until page 4. But on February 9, a financial blog called the Devil’s Excrement republished it, at which point it was picked up by a popular Latin-American blog, the snarky Inca Kola News. The Inca Kola item, in turn, immediately became the focus of intense interest.

“So far today,” a post on the blog read, “this humble blog has had several visits from major newswires, three visits from the US Federal Reserve and one from the SEC, all using [the terms] ‘Alex Dalmady,’ ‘Stanford,’ ‘Madoff’ etc as keyword entries. Not to mention all those people from an island called Antigua and plenty from a company called ‘Stanford Eagle’ in Houston. Hi guys, having a nice day?

Regular reader 'Ward' wins with this comment left below:

Now that IKN has made it into mainstream media I'm expecting to see posts such as:

- Peru on track to meet GDP growth projections
- South America needs US economic stimulus
- Evo suspected of inciting separationist movement in Texas