Some weird goings-on in the financial world right now…..!
ANOTHER BANKER: Former ABN Amro CEO, Wife & Daughter FOUND DEAD
April 6th, 2014
This brings the sad list of senior financial services executives who have died in the last few months to twelve.
from Zero Hedge: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-04-05/abn-amro-ex-ceo-found-dead
A mere two weeks since former JPMorgan banker, Kenneth Bellando jumped to his death, Bloomberg reports that the former CEO of Dutch Bank ABN Amro (and his wife and daughter) were found dead at their home after a possible “family tragedy.” This expands the dismal list of senior financial services executive deaths to 12 in the last few months. The 57 year-old Jan Peter Schmittmann, was reportedly discovered by his other daughter when she arrived home that morning. Police declined to comment on the circumstances of his (and his wife and daughter’s) death. This is not the first C-level ABN Amro banker to be found dead. In 2009, former CFO Huibert Boumeester was discovered with (assumed self-inflicted) shotgun wounds.
Schmittmann owned 2phase2 (apparently an asset management company) and was a co-founder of 5 Park Lane (what appears to be a private equity / management consultancy) according to his LinkedIn profile
This brings the sad list of senior financial services executives who have died in the last few months to 12:
1 – William Broeksmit, 58-year-old former senior executive at Deutsche Bank AG, was found dead in his home after an apparent suicide in South Kensington in central London, on January 26th.
2 – Karl Slym, 51 year old Tata Motors managing director Karl Slym, was found dead on the fourth floor of the Shangri-La hotel in Bangkok on January 27th.
3 – Gabriel Magee, a 39-year-old JP Morgan employee, died after falling from the roof of the JP Morgan European headquarters in London on January 27th.
4 – Mike Dueker, 50-year-old chief economist of a US investment bank was found dead close to the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in Washington State.
5 – Richard Talley, the 57 year old founder of American Title Services in Centennial, Colorado, was found dead earlier this month after apparently shooting himself with a nail gun.
6 – Tim Dickenson, a U.K.-based communications director at Swiss Re AG, also died last month, however the circumstances surrounding his death are still unknown.
7 – Ryan Henry Crane, a 37 year old executive at JP Morgan died in an alleged suicide just a few weeks ago. No details have been released about his death aside from this small obituary announcement at the Stamford Daily Voice.
8 – Li Junjie, 33-year-old banker in Hong Kong jumped from the JP Morgan HQ in Hong Kong this week.
9 – James Stuart Jr, Former National Bank of Commerce CEO, found dead in Scottsdale, Ariz., the morning of Feb. 19. A family spokesman did not say what caused the death
10 – Edmund (Eddie) Reilly, 47, a trader at Midtown’s Vertical Group, committed suicide by jumping in front of LIRR train
11 – Kenneth Bellando, 28, a trader at Levy Capital, formerly investment banking analyst at JPMorgan, jumped to his death from his 6th floor East Side apartment.
12 – Jan Peter Schmittmann, 57, the former CEO of Dutch bank ABN Amro found dead at home near Amsterdam with wife and daughter.
Six Futuristic Toilets You Might See In Your Bathroom One Day
Fly larvae that transforms poop into useful products. A water-free toilet. These are just a few of the innovations coming from the Indian leg of the Gates Foundation’s Toilet Challenge.
March 27, 2014
How do you build a better toilet – one that’s safe, cheap, and efficient enough to serve the 2.5 billion people who currently lack access to safe sanitation? It’s a question that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has grappled with for years, offering grants to all sorts of initiatives that promise to one day improve the depressing statistics around toilet use. Sanitation-related diseases kill more people than malaria, measles, and HIV/AIDS combined, according to the CDC.
Over the past few years, 16 teams have received grants to rethink the toilet. In late March, the foundation announced the winners of its latest toilet-reinvention challenge: a group of six out-there prototype toilets from Indian researchers that will be at least partially funded by grants from the Gates Foundation.
In 2011, the Gates Foundation launched the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge, which asked budding toilet researchers to come up with safe, cheap, and hygienic waterless toilets. The winner of the challenge, a team from Caltech, is testing its self-contained, off-grid toilet system in India (a detailed account of the team’s progress is available here).
One of the prototype Caltech toilets made a pit stop at the Indian version of the Reinvent the Toilet Fair (the first was held in Seattle, Washington) in New Delhi. That’s where the six winners of Reinvent the Toilet Challenge: India, were announced.
* An electronic, off-grid toilet from the University of South Florida and Eram Scientific Solutions (the company behind eToilets) that is modular, solar-powered, and has an on-board waste processing. The Gates funding will go towards field testing of the toilet in a suburban slum (it is intended to be a public toilet).
* A proof of concept toilet from the Amrita School of Biotechnology that uses “viral agents to target and kill pathogens and odor-producing bacteria in fecal waste,” according to a press release.
* Another proof-of-concept toilet, this time from Pradin Technologies, that uses ultrasound technology to cut down on a toilet’s water use and “enhance the settling of fecal particles” in its storage tank.
* A project, developed by Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee and Fresh rooms Life Sciences, consisting of a container that cultivates Black Soldier Fly Larvae, which can turn human poop into useful products.
* A water-free toilet developed by the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai that uses an air-blower and a sand-like material to keep itself clean, removing flies and traces of odor.
* A toilet containing a new septic tank design that cuts down on pollutants, from BITS Pilani K.K. Birla Goa Campus, Ghent University, and Sustainable Biosolutions.
While the Gates Foundation is banking on the idea that these oftentimes pricey toilets will become more affordable, some people are skeptical of the entire Reinvent the Toilet enterprise. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Aditi Malhotra expresses the belief that “toilets need to be built, before being reinvented.”
She notes: According to a government survey released in 2013, nearly 68% of households in the countryside do not have access to toilets. The 2011 census, the latest year for which data is available, found that more Indians have access to mobile phones than they do to toilets. The findings also said the situation was grimmer for 33 million lower-caste Dalit households, with 75% defecating in the open.
Reinventing the toilet may not solve the immediate problem of access, but if the Gates Foundation succeeds and technology prices drop, the toilets which are ultimately installed in new areas may be cleaner, more efficient, and even more environmentally friendly than anything that has come before. That is, of course, a big “if.”
The Following is by Douglas Adams of “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” fame.
(more info – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Hitchhiker%27s_Guide_to_the_Galaxy )
Australia is a very confusing place, taking up a large amount of the bottom half of the planet. It is recognizable from orbit because of many unusual features, including what at first looks like an enormous bite taken out of its southern edge; a wall of sheer cliffs which plunge into the girting sea Geologists assure us that this is simply an accident of geomorphology, but they still call it the “Great Australian Bight”, proving that not only are they covering up a more frightening theory but they can’t spell either.
The first of the confusing things about Australia is the status of the place. Where other landmasses and sovereign lands are classified as continent, island or country, Australia is considered all three. Typically, it is unique in this.
The second confusing thing about Australia is the animals. They can be divided into three categories: Poisonous, Odd, and Sheep.
It is true that of the 10 most poisonous arachnids on the planet, Australia has 9 of them. Actually, it would be more accurate to say that of the 9 most poisonous arachnids, Australia has all of them. However, there are few snakes, possibly because the spiders have killed them all.
But even the spiders won’t go near the sea. Any visitors should be careful to check inside boots (before putting them on), under toilet seats (before sitting down) and generally everywhere else. A stick is very useful for this task.
The last confusing thing about Australia is the inhabitants.
A short history: Sometime around 40,000 years ago some people arrived in boats from the north. They ate all the available food, and a lot of them died. The ones who survived learned respect for the balance of nature, man’s proper place in the scheme of things, and spiders. They settled in and spent a lot of the intervening time making up strange stories.
Then, around 200 years ago, Europeans arrived in boats from the north. More accurately, European convicts were sent, with a few deranged people in charge. They tried to plant their crops in autumn (failing to take account of the reversal of the seasons), ate all their food, and a lot of them died.
About then the sheep arrived, and have been treasured ever since. It is interesting to note here that the Europeans always consider themselves vastly superior to any other race they encounter, since they can lie, cheat, steal and litigate (marks of a civilized culture they say), whereas all the Aboriginals can do is happily survive being left in the middle of a vast red-hot desert, equipped with a stick.
Eventually, the new lot of people stopped being Europeans on ‘extended holiday’ and became Australians. The changes are subtle, but deep, caused by the mind-stretching expanses of nothingness and eerie quiet, where a person can sit perfectly still and look deep inside themselves to the core of their essence, their reasons for being, and the necessity of checking inside their boots every morning for fatal surprises. They also picked up the most finely tuned sense of irony in the world, and the Aboriginal gift for making up stories. Be warned.
There is also the matter of the beaches. Australian beaches are simply the nicest and best in the world, although anyone actually venturing into the sea will have to contend with sharks, stinging jellyfish, stonefish (a fish which sits on the bottom of the sea, pretends to be a rock and has venomous barbs sticking out of its back that will kill just from the pain) and surfboarders. However, watching a beach sunset is worth the risk.
As a result of all this hardship, dirt, thirst and wombats, you would expect Australians to be a dour lot. Instead, they are genial, jolly, cheerful and always willing to share a kind word with a stranger. Faced with insurmountable odds and impossible problems, they smile disarmingly and look for a stick. Major engineering feats have been performed with sheets of corrugated iron, string and mud.
Alone of all the races on earth, they seem to be free from the ‘Grass is greener on the other side of the fence’ syndrome, and roundly proclaim that Australia is, in fact, the other side of that fence. They call the land “Oz” or “Godzone” (a verbal contraction of “God’s Own Country”). The irritating thing about this is they may be right.
There are some traps for the unsuspecting traveller, though.
Do not, under any circumstances, suggest that the beer is imperfect, unless you are comparing it to another kind of Australian beer.
Do not wear a Hawaiian shirt.
Religion and Politics are fairly safe topics of conversation (Australians don’t care too much about either) but Sport is a minefield.
The only correct answer to “So, howdya like our country, eh?” is “Best (insert your own regional swear word here) country in the world!”
It is very likely that, on arriving, some cheerful Australians will ‘adopt’ you on your first night, and take you to a pub where Australian beer is served. Despite the obvious danger, do not refuse. It is a form of initiation rite. You will wake up late the next day with an astonishing hangover, a foul taste in your mouth, and wearing strange clothes.
Your hosts will usually make sure you get home, and waive off any legal difficulties with “It’s his first time in Australia, so we took him to the pub,” to which the policeman will sagely nod and close his notebook. Be sure to tell the story of these events to every other Australian you encounter, adding new embellishments at every stage and noting how strong the beer was. Thus you will be accepted into this unique culture.
Typical Australian sayings:-
G’Day. She’ll be right, mate. No Worries.
Tips to Surviving Australia:
Don’t ever put your hand down a hole for any reason WHATSOEVER.
The beer is stronger than you think, regardless of how strong you think it is.
Always carry a stick.
Air-conditioning is imperative.
Do not attempt to use Australian slang unless you are a trained linguist and extremely good in a fist fight.
Wear thick socks.
Take good maps. Stopping to ask directions only works when there are people nearby.
If you leave the urban areas, carry several litres of water with you at all times, or you will die.
Even in the most embellished stories told by Australians, there is always a core of truth that it is unwise to ignore.
How to identify Australians:
They waddle when they walk due to the 53 expired petrol discount vouchers stuffed in their wallet or purse.
They pronounce Melbourne as “Mel-bin”.
They think it makes perfect sense to decorate highways with large fibreglass bananas, prawns and sheep.
They think “Woolloomooloo” is a perfectly reasonable name for a place, that “Wagga Wagga” can be abbreviated to “Wagga” but “Woy Woy” can’t be called “Woy”.
Their hamburgers will contain beetroot. Apparently it’s a must-have.
They don’t think it’s summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle.
Will react in horror when companies try to market “Anzac cookies”.
They believe that all train timetables are works of fiction.
It makes me proud to be an Australian! BE
It has been the ruin of many a pleasant outing: Nature calls, but there’s nowhere to go.
Now, a new website is making it easier for tourists to get much needed relief when travelling in an unfamiliar city or town.
The site, Airpnp, is modelled after the popular lodging website Airbnb, in which homeowners make their spare rooms or unoccupied dwellings available to paying lodgers for a fee – often considerably less than the cost of a hotel stay.
In a similar vein, users of Airpnp are matched with bars, restaurants, offices and homes where they can pay to use the loo, usually for a fee of five dollars or less.
The idea was the brainchild of Max Gaudin and Travis Laurendine, two New Orleans natives, calling themselves “entrepeeneurs”, who have encountered the problem frequently over the years during that city’s riotous Mardi Gras festivities.
Fat Tuesday celebrations in the southern US city, which were held yesterday, are marked by an abundance of drinking, but too few places to relieve oneself, with some revellers resorting to public urination – a criminal offence.
Airpnp solves that problem by connecting people willing to share the toilets in their private bathrooms with strangers willing to pay up to five dollars for the privilege.
“When there aren’t enough bathrooms nearby for the amount of people in any given location, Airpnp is there to save the day,” its website said.
Users can select from among pictures posted on the site, which also have descriptions of the amenities.
They are “able to rate their pee experience afterwards so others can see how each rest room stacks up,” the Airpnp website says.
In addition to the site’s dozens of loos in the United States, most of which so far are concentrated in the New Orleans area, there are also about 120 bathrooms posted in Europe on Airpnp.
The site so far is available only on the internet, although its founders say a smartphone app is in the pipeline.
Hair Is An Extension Of The Nervous System
Why Indians Keep Their Hair Long
By C. Young
This information about hair has been hidden from the public since the Viet Nam War .
Our culture leads people to believe that hair style is a matter of personal preference, that hair style is a matter of fashion and/or convenience, and that how people wear their hair is simply a cosmetic issue. Back in the Viet Nam war however, an entirely different picture emerged, one that has been carefully covered up and hidden from public view.
In the early nineties, Sally [name changed to protect privacy] was married to a licensed psychologist who worked at a VA Medical hospital. He worked with combat veterans with PTSD, post traumatic stress disorder. Most of them had served in Viet Nam.
Sally said, “I remember clearly an evening when my husband came back to our apartment on Doctor’s Circle carrying a thick official looking folder in his hands. Inside were hundreds of pages of certain studies commissioned by the government. He was in shock from the contents. What he read in those documents completely changed his life. From that moment on my conservative middle of the road husband grew his hair and beard and never cut them again. What is more, the VA Medical center let him do it, and other very conservative men in the staff followed his example. As I read the documents, I learned why.
It seems that during the Viet Nam War special forces in the war department had sent undercover experts to comb American Indian Reservations looking for talented scouts, for tough young men trained to move stealthily through rough terrain. They were especially looking for men with outstanding, almost supernatural, tracking abilities. Before being approached, these carefully selected men were extensively documented as experts in tracking and survival.
With the usual enticements, the well proven smooth phrases used to enroll new recruits, some of these Indian trackers were then enlisted. Once enlisted, an amazing thing happened. Whatever talents and skills they had possessed on the reservation seemed to mysteriously disappear, as recruit after recruit failed to perform as expected in the field.
Serious casualties and failures of performance led the government to contract expensive testing of these recruits, and this is what was found.
When questioned about their failure to perform as expected, the older recruits replied consistantly that when they received their required military haircuts, they could no longer ‘sense’ the enemy, they could no longer access a ‘sixth sense’ , their ‘intuition’ no longer was reliable, they couldn’t ‘read’ subtle signs as well or access subtle extrasensory information.
So the testing institute recruited more Indian trackers, let them keep their long hair, and tested them in multiple areas. Then they would pair two men together who had received the same scores on all the tests. They would let one man in the pair keep his hair long, and gave the other man a military haircut. Then the two men retook the tests.
Time after time the man with long hair kept making high scores. Time after time, the man with the short hair failed the tests in which he had previously
scored high scores.
Here is a typical test:
The recruit is sleeping out in the woods. An armed ‘enemy’ approaches the sleeping man. The long haired man is awakened out of his sleep by a strong sense of danger and gets away long before the enemy is close, long before any sounds from the approaching enemy are audible.
In another version of this test the long haired man senses an approach and somehow intuits that the enemy will perform a physical attack. He follows his ‘sixth sense’ and stays still, pretending to be sleeping, but quickly grabs the attacker and ‘kills’ him as the attacker reaches down to strangle him.
This same man, after having passed these and other tests, then received a military haircut and consistantly failed these tests, and many other tests that he had previously passed.
So, the document recommended that all Indian trackers be exempt from military haircuts. In fact, it required that trackers keep their hair long.”
The mammalian body has evolved over millions of years. Survival skills of human and animal at times seem almost supernatural. Science is constantly coming up with more discoveries about the amazing abilities of man and animal to survive. Each part of the body has highly sensitive work to perform for the survival and well being of the body as a whole. The body has a reason for every part of itself.
Hair is an extension of the nervous system, it can be correctly seen as exteriorized nerves, a type of highly-evolved ‘feelers’ or ‘antennae’ that transmit vast amounts of important information to the brainstem, the limbic system, and the neocortex.
Not only does hair in people, including facial hair in men, provide an information highway reaching the brain, hair also emits energy, the electromagnetic energy emitted by the brain into the outer environment. This has been seen in Kirlian photography when a person is photographed with long hair and then rephotographed after the hair is cut.
When hair is cut, receiving and sending transmissions to and from the environment are greatly hampered. This results in ‘numbing-out’.
Cutting of hair is a contributing factor to unawareness of environmental distress in local ecosystems. It is also a contributing factor to insensitivity in relationships of all kinds. It contributes to sexual frustration.
In searching for solutions for the distress in our world, it may be time for us to consider that many of our most basic assumptions about reality are in error. It may be that a major part of the solution is looking at us in the face each morning when we see ourselves in the mirror. The story of Sampson and Delilah in the Bible has a lot of encoded truth to tell us. When Delilah cut Sampson’s hair, the once undefeatable Sampson was defeated.