Here is another post with five Best of Web links I have found worthy to share with you: An excellent roadmap to understanding Putin, visiting the scariest places on earth, we meet again eternal grifter Jordan Belfort now the wolf of crypto, who’s in your wallet…as in who shows up on banknotes with some fascinating stats and a must read interview of Zelensky titled: Liberation Without Victory.
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The Best of Web posts are much shorter in length with material that is a notch or two above what you see in the regular TBB posts.
Click on the headline for the link!
Understanding Vladimir Putin, the man who fooled the world
Must read on this guy. Looking back, it is kind of surreal how shocked everyone was about his decision to invade Ukraine. Even after US intelligence was screaming about it. I still have a tweet directed at me from a US hater calling me “war monger” after simply tweeting about yet another US intelligence warning, sad lol. I think everyone was in denial about this guy, especially the Germans, looking at you Angela Merkel.
Looking back, however, it is clear that the outside world has consistently misread him. From the moment he took power, outsiders too often saw what they wanted and played down the darkest sides of Putinism.
Reading this passage below made me throw up…
The Putin fanclub has had numerous members in the west over the years. Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s close adviser and lawyer, expressed admiration for Putin’s annexation of Crimea, remarking: “He makes a decision and he executes it, quickly. That’s what you call a leader.” Nigel Farage, the former leader of Ukip and the Brexit party, and a friend of Donald Trump, once named Putin the world leader he most admired, adding: “The way he played the whole Syria thing. Brilliant. Not that I approve of him politically.” Matteo Salvini, the leader of the populist right Northern League party and a former deputy prime minister of Italy, flaunted his admiration for the Russian leader by being photographed in a Putin T-shirt in Red Square. Rodrigo Duterte, the president of the Philippines, has said, “My favourite hero is Putin.”
What follows is a really good description of how Putin rose to come to this…while realizing this guy may be in power for a very long time 🙁
The Scariest Places on Earth
We know most of these places but there were a few I had never heard of. Such as:
Comatong Caves, Sabah, Malaysia: The Gomantong Caves in Malaysia are geographical wonders, with limestone walls reaching up to 300 feet in some spots, but visitors often leave the site describing it as one of the most disgusting wildlife experiences they’ve ever had. First things first, Gomantong is home to more than two million bats, which leads to impossibly thick layers of guano (otherwise known as bat poop) covering the ground. And don’t even think about slipping, because the handrails are just as filthy as the floor. If you can make it through the river of bat droppings, you’ll then encounter several million Malaysian cockroaches scurrying around. Wherever the guano is, that’s where the cockroaches will be (read: everywhere). Finally, if you get past the bat smells and cockroaches crawling up your legs, there are several other wonderful creatures you just might happen upon, including snakes, scorpions, freshwater crabs, and the infamous giant scutigera centipedes—poisonous critters that are at least three inches long. [Perfectly disgusting follow up to Putin!]
Beelitz-Heilstätten Hospital, Germany: If this old German hospital looks disturbing, well, it is. Between 1898 and 1930, the Beelitz-Heilstätten complex (a 50-minute drive south of Berlin) served as a tuberculosis sanatorium. It also housed mustard gas and machine gun victims during World War I, including a young soldier named Adolf Hitler, who had been wounded in the leg. The hospital later went on to be a major treatment center for Nazi soldiers during World War II, and it was used as a Soviet military hospital from 1945 until the fall of the Berlin Wall. Today, a few hospital wards are used as a neurological rehabilitation center, although the majority of the complex is abandoned. The surgery and psychiatric wards have both been left to decay and give way to nature (and vandals), and the result looks like something straight out of American Horror Story—definitely not an enjoyable day trip for the easily spooked. [From Putin to bat poop to Hitler and Nazis…I am not sure how I can turn around the vibe of this blog post you guys!]
The Taylor Glacier in Antarctica with its “Blood Falls” also looks interesting. I don’t care about the one in Finland and the rest I was aware of. Which one is your favorite?
Who’s In Your Wallet?
I loved this …visual essay about the famous figures who represent today’s currencies around the world.
Who is shown on banknotes the most? Writers! Followed of course by heads of government. Only four female politicians. 12 monarchs, only two of them are women. 96% of the people who made it on a banknote were dead, only 10 got to see themselves on a banknote while alive. And only one of those 10 is alive, Queen Elizabeth of course who will likely outlive us all!
Anyway, you will enjoy this post much more than the first two, I needed to turn it around!
The Wolf of Crypto
If you have not seen the movie “The Wolf of Wall Street” I highly recommend it. It is about this Jordan Belfort dude who went to jail for his fraud crimes. And of course some are born grifters…so, he reinvents himself as, what else, a crypto guru charging a LOT of money for private consulting sessions. Like all these morons paying him $40k shown in the article. I am sorry, it is time to throw up again. I thought I was going to turn this blog post around to be more positive but…I guess it was not made to be. I was shaking my head reading this so violently it is a miracle it did not separate from my neck. Stupidity reigns supreme…Read these excerpts below and scream with me!
This month, at his house in Miami Beach, he hosted nine blockchain enthusiasts and entrepreneurs for a weekend-long crypto workshop — a chance to hang out with the Wolf and enjoy an “intimate financial experience” with his crypto-industry friends.
A crypto miner from Kazakhstan relaxed in the sun with an aspiring blockchain influencer who runs a roofing company in Idaho. A Florida businessman explained his plan to use NFTs in a start-up that he’s pitching as Tinder for music. Some of the guests said they paid for the workshop because they are die-hard fans of the Wolf; others simply wanted to network with fellow entrepreneurs.
For a gathering of crypto evangelists, it was striking how much time everyone spent reliving their biggest losses. Nearly half the group said they’d been hacked. One guest said he’d lost money when the cryptocurrency exchange Mt. Gox collapsed in 2014. Two others said they’d burned large quantities of tokens in risky trades.
One of Mr. Belfort’s guests, Svein-Erik Nilsen, a Norwegian entrepreneur, started describing his own business ambitions. Did Mr. Hero have any tips? The key to starting a new venture, he replied, is aggressive marketing to stand out from the crowd. “Imagine going to a Brazilian beach and trying to find one single hot chick. There’s eight million,” Mr. Hero said. “The idea is the same thing here. You have to do stupid, dumb marketing to get it out there.”
Two guests discussed the mechanics of pursuing younger women without risking entanglement in a “sugar baby” situation. Someone speculated about how an enterprising strip club owner might incorporate NFTs into the business.
Artem Bespaloff, the chief executive of the crypto mining company Asic Jungle, leaned across the table to describe his personal conversion to the way of the Wolf. He was planning to go to medical school, he said, when he found a copy of “The Wolf of Wall Street” at the library. “I said, ‘This is what I want to do,’” Mr. Bespaloff recalled. “I ended up stealing the book from the library.”
Liberation Without Victory
Must read incredible interview of Volodymyr Zelensky! Archived link.
Interview was conducted by Anne Applebaum and Jeffrey Goldberg in Zelensky’s blacked out compound in Kyiv. No cameras this time.
On or off camera, Zelensky conducts himself with a deliberate lack of pretense. In a part of the world where leadership usually implies stiff posture and a pompous manner—and where signaling military authority requires, at a minimum, highly visible epaulets—he instead evokes sympathy and feelings of trust precisely because he sounds, in the words of a Ukrainian acquaintance, “like one of us.” He is a kind of anti-Putin: Rather than telegraphing a cold-eyed, murderous superiority, he wants people to understand him as an Everyman, a middle-aged dad with a bad back.
Much of Zelensky’s time is spent on the telephone, on Zoom, on Skype, answering the questions of presidents and prime ministers—often the same questions, repeated to a maddening degree. “I like new questions,” he said. “It’s not interesting to answer the questions you already heard.” He is frustrated, for instance, by repeated requests for his wish list of weapons systems. “When some leaders ask me what weapons I need, I need a moment to calm myself, because I already told them the week before. It’s Groundhog Day. I feel like Bill Murray.”
His productive relationship with Russia and Russians came to an end in 2014, when people he had known for years stopped talking to him: “I just did not expect that people, a lot of partners, acquaintances—I thought they were friends, but they were not—just stopped picking up the phone.”
Throughout the conversation, Zelensky displayed his gifts for spontaneity, irony, and sarcasm. He didn’t tell jokes, exactly, but he said that he cannot part with humor altogether. “I think that any normal person cannot survive without it. Without a sense of humor, as surgeons say, they would not be able to perform surgeries—to save lives and to lose people as well. They would simply lose their minds without humor.”
But he feels, viscerally, what so many Ukrainians feel. “There will be no complete victory for people who lost their children, relatives, husbands, wives, parents. That’s what I mean,” he said. “They will not feel the victory, even when our territories are liberated.”
And I leave you with this…
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Linking to read over the next days!
Hope you are well.
Carl Pietrantonio says
Silver! FTPNW for now! Man, how crazy is this Crypto and NFT stuff? I simply think eventually it will all crash. And thanks for the Zelensky interview thing. I wish we had some guys like this in our gummint! How are you feeling? Recovered from your fall? Hope to hear good news after the Marathon!
I ran a little workout today, total 4 miles. No knee pain. And the wounds/cuts/scrapes keep healing…slowly. I am definitely going to line up this Sunday and…see what happens.
Troll Ramsey popped in again to say something about Hunter Biden and the N word and for his email address he left email@example.com
Classy Trumpist as always, sad! If I had a dollar for every comment of his I have deleted here…it will shock you!
Don’t push it if you start to feel the slightest pain.
Love a good crypto story. I can’t wait for Michael Lewis to write a book about crypto/nft.
And about EV’s I’m curious have the big 3 will deal with the battery supply chain limitations
“ Rivian’s CEO says the electric vehicle business faces a looming battery shortage. “All the world’s cell production combined represents well under 10% of what we will need in 10 years. Meaning, 90% to 95% of the supply chain does not exist.”
Carl Pietrantonio says
I am glad I bought my Tesla almost a year ago. used but I love it. I think Batteries is gonna become the big sticking point in ramping up production of EVs eventually. At least until better batteries that do not use Lithium come along. Much research being done all the time.
Carl Pietrantonio says
Man, what is that dude’s problem?? Glad the knee is coming along. Just be careful. Rooting for you and looking forward to the Marathon report!
I am not qualified on having an opinion on EVs. All I know is I am not in the market for one for a while as I just purchased two cars coming off lease. Fords of course. I think there is going to be an even bigger push in the years ahead and I am waiting for the 50% tax credit 🙂
Michael Lewis DID commit to write his next book about crypto…can’t wait!
I am not pushing anything, I keep learning about my body…
Ric of Loyalty Traveler is back!
You replied to the banned blog troll Rams who has nothing better to do other than post way too many comments in my blog that nobody reads. So, your comment went into spam simply because you replied to it from yet another fake identity of his…
Watching Trump get mad being interviewed by another knucklehead Piers was worth lots of laughs, thanks.
For the record, Rob’s comment was:
“Ric is a class act and walks the talk more than most bloggers.”
I assume you didn’t sign up for CNN+. CNN+ must be the biggest media launch failure in history. I hope the employees find a good home somewhere else.
This actually made into tomorrow’s post!