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This interview is part of the “Tomorrow Lives Here” Conversation Series presented by Miami Business School.
–The head of the Bank for International Settlements, Agustín Carstens defended globalism and bashed bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in an exclusive interview with RISE NEWS.
–Carstens is the general manager for BIS, a massive institution that is often called the “bank for the central banks”.
–Carstens was interviewed by Miami Business School Vice Dean Henrik Cronqvist.
–The former governor of Mexico’s Central Bank, Carstens has earned a reputation as being a strong skeptic of cryptocurrencies.
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By Allyn Farach
A Florida artist is organizing the burning and the burying of the Confederate flag today at 2 PM EST in order to celebrate Memorial Day in a unique way.
The meaning of said burnings are to address the history behind the Confederate flag.
“It is a way to ritualistically confront through reflection and catharsis, the pain and trauma of a very horrific part of American history.” Sims told Think Progress.
The event has not been without its detractors.
A group named Sons of Confederate Veterans questioned the burning’s timing in 2015.
“To me, it represents the flags my ancestors fought and died under on the field of war,” Tom Strain Jr. told WTOC.
Sims has made the project accessible for people with a stream and a kit that contains items such as John Sims’ Gettysburg Redress and a Confederate flag to print out and burn for those who cannot or are inclined against buying a Confederate flag.
Sims will be broadcasting his burning and burial of the Confederate Flag at 2 P.M. EST.WATCH:
— burnandbury (@burnandbury) May 30, 2016
Cover Photo Credit:edward stojakovic/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)
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The visa waiver program has undergone major changes in the US after Congress quietly passed a controversial provision that was included in an unrelated massive bill, triggering protests from civil liberties groups, minority groups and the European Union.
The legislation was tucked away in the massive omnibus spending bill passed by Congress, and it received bi-partisan support, a rarity in this Congress. President Obama signed it into law on Friday.
However, it didn’t go through without criticism. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has slammed the legislation in a letter, saying it is not only “discriminatory, it is arbitrary.”
The new law means that dual nationals of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Sudan who are also a citizen of a country participating in the Visa Waiver Program are required to go to a consulate interview overseas to obtain a visa before travelling to the US for 90 days. It also means that an individual who has traveled to those countries in the last five years has to get a visa.
“This is discriminatory. It is not based on individuals’ decisions, but on parentage,” Abdi told Rise News. “It’s taking us down a dangerous path, setting a precedent that you will be treated differently because of your dual nationality.”
Syed Farook was a US citizen raised in a Pakistani household. His wife came to the US on a K1 fiancée visa granted by the US Embassy in Pakistan after clearing a background check. This was not under the Visa Waiver Program, and critics say the new law doesn’t target real threats.
Iranian dual nationals, some of the most vocal in opposition to the legislation, ask why Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are not included in the list of countries the legislation has zeroed in on.
Read More: Kim Badawi-The Stories Behind The Lens
The National Iranian American Council (NIAC), is strongly opposed to the legislation. Jamal Abdi, the director of NIAC Action, said the legislation could place Iranian Americans “In a separate category to their fellow citizens.”
He expressed his concern on what the EU response will be, as the Visa Waiver Program is reciprocity. The EU will be reviewing the program in April.
“This is discriminatory. It is not based on individuals’ decisions, but on parentage,” Abdi told RISE NEWS. “It’s taking us down a dangerous path, setting a precedent that you will be treated differently because of your dual nationality.”
Under Iranian law, a child born to an Iranian citizen father is automatically an Iranian citizen, whether they are born there or not. This is the same for all four countries deemed as dangerous in the legislation. Renouncing citizenship is also a long and complicated process, according to critics.
The legislation has also angered European diplomats, and 29 European Union ambassadors, representing member states and the EU itself, signed an editorial directed at US lawmakers, arguing against the changes.
The diplomats warned this new regulation represented “the de facto introduction of a visa regime in all but name”.
They added in the letter:, “such indiscriminate action against the more than 13 million European citizens who travel to the US each year would be counterproductive, could trigger legally mandated reciprocal measures, and would do nothing to increase security while instead hurting economies on both sides of the Atlantic.”
The legislation also would not differentiate between those that travel to these countries for business, humanitarian efforts or familial reasons.
Thus it means that journalists and aid workers will be penalized while foreign fighters could just lie about having travelled there, as accessing if someone has travelled to Iraq or Syria is difficult because their borders are insecure.
There are also concerns that the new legislation could violate the Iran nuclear deal, or that this is even an attempt to undermine it.
Senior Obama administration officials have expressed concerns.
Stephen Mull, the State Department official in charge of implementing the deal had warned the Senate Foreign Relations Committee late last week that this “could have a very negative impact on the deal.”
Ali Larijani, the speaker of Iran’s parliament, said the changes “are aimed at harassment” and that they “blatantly violate the nuclear agreement” according to comments carried by the Iranian state-controlled press.
A portion of the Iran nuclear deal dictates that the US can not take any action that could harm Iran’s economic relationship with other countries, and since the legislations mandates that any travel to Iran for citizens in the 38 countries participating in the visa waiver program would have to obtain a visa to enter the US, there are concerns this could make businesses reluctant to travel to Iran.
Iranian officials maintain that these new restrictions violate this part of the deal.
Secretary of State John Kerry reached out to his Iranian counterpart, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, to calm the stormy waters in a December 19th letter.
He stated that the US will find ways to make sure that changes to the visa waiver program will not interfere with “legitimate business interests.”
Kerry also assured Zarif that the U.S. government “remain[s] fully committed to the sanctions lifting provided for under the JCPOA.”
The head of Iran’s tourism body, Morteza Rahmani-Movahed, said Tehran would lodge a complaint to the U.N.’s tourism body, the World Tourism Organization. He told a press conference Sunday that some of the 38 VWP countries were Iranian “tourism targets.”
However, according to Fox News, Republicans have responded badly to the suggestion that they are “bending over backwards to placate the Iranian regime.”
The NIAC has committed to continuing to the fight the changes, saying on their website that they are in discussions with members of Congress “to take legislative action early next year.”
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By Staff Report
How’s this for an October surprise? (Yeah not really.)
Mike Tyson, the former world heavyweight champion of the world endorsed Donald Trump in his campaign for President today.
The endorsement came during a HuffPost Live broadcast where Tyson was promoting his Adult Swim television show, “Mike Tyson Mysteries.”
“He should be president of the United States,” Tyson said said in the interview. “Let’s try something new. Let’s run America like a business, where no colors matter. Whoever can do the job, gets the job.”
Watch the interview below in a Huffington Post video:
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