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Showing posts from January 22, 2014


This image shows Pangea (the supercontinent that formed roughly 300 million years ago) mapped with contemporary geopolitical borders.

Map by Massimo Pietrobon


Banks and tax evasion
Putting the squeeze on Miami vice

Jan 18th 2014, 11:09 by M.V. | NEW YORK

IT HAS become a lot less comfortable to be an American with an undisclosed offshore bank account in recent years, thanks to the federal prosecutors who have harried foreign moneymen and lawyers suspected of aiding tax evasion, particularly in Switzerland.

 Now life is also about to get harder for non-Americans who dodge their fiscal obligations at home by stuffing savings in American banks.

Forced to offer some degree of reciprocity as it hounds other countries for information on American tax cheats, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) drew up a rule in 2012 that would, for the first time, force American banks to cough up data on “non-resident aliens” who hold accounts with them. This would then be passed on to tax authorities in the account-holders’ home countries.

This gave rise to much huffing and puffing from banks which hold a lot of Latin American money, for instance in Miami's financial…

CHEERS !!! : HERE'S TO THE SOGGY DOLLAR BAR IN BVI (British Virgin Islands) ...

Top Caribbean Beach Bars

Courtesy of The Mustique Company

Soak up the sun and surf while sipping on a cold cocktail at one of these sandy spots.

From November 2009By Karen Schaler

“I’d like a Painkiller, please.”

Dripping wet, wearing only a bathing suit and a grin, I pulled a drenched $20 bill out of my bikini top. 

I was about to join the ranks of thirsty sailors who have swum ashore for a cocktail at the Soggy Dollar Bar on Jost Van Dyke, in the British Virgin Islands

“We’ve been waiting for you,” said Mickey, the bartender, motioning toward my sailboat, anchored a couple hundred yards off the beach. 

He handed me the drink I had requested: a wickedly delicious mixture of dark rum, coconut, and fruit juices, with fresh nutmeg sprinkled on top.

 I strolled over to a hammock and happily lost myself in the magic of the setting. 

The drink: $6. The experience: priceless.

A blissful Caribbean beach bar experience is something vacationers have sought out for decades. 

The Caribbean Tourism Organiz…

The 3D printer that can build a house in 24 hours

It looks like those working in the construction industry will be losing their jobs soon too.

 Certainly new jobs will be had in creating and maintaining these machines but it certainly won't replace the millions of people earning a living in construction. 

Automated cars will destroy 4 million more jobs in the US alone. Robots will soon clean hotel rooms. 

To me, this signifies the end of capitalism because people simply won't be needed to work. 

The question will become, what comes next? 

Any thoughts?

20/11/2013 16:45 | By Mark Hattersley, contributor, MSN Innovation

A revolutionary 3D concrete printer can build a 2,500-square-foot home layer by layer in a single day


The University of Southern California is testing a giant 3D printer that could be used to build a whole house in under 24 hours.

Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis has designed the giant robot that replaces construction workers with a nozzle on a gantry, this squirts out concrete and can quickly build a home according to …

STICKY WICKET ??? : REFILE-Panama Canal Authority rejects EU mediation offer in contract row

Mon Jan 20, 2014 12:43pm EST

By Danilo Masoni and Foo Yun Chee

Jan 20 (Reuters) - The Panama Canal Authority (PCA) has turned down an offer by the European Commission to mediate in a multi-billion dollar dispute with a Spanish-led construction consortium which threatens to halt work on widening the century-old waterway.

The consortium, known as Grupo Unidos por el Canal (GUPC), had threatened to suspend work by Monday unless the Panama Canal Authority (PCA) paid $1.6 billion in cost overruns on one of the world's largest construction projects. But on Sunday the group backed down from the threat.

The European Commission said on Monday GPUC, led by Spanish builder Sacyr, had requested mediation by the European commissioner for industry Antonio Tajani, who accepted.

But the PCA immediately rejected it.

"The contract over a third set of locks has already mechanisms to resolve disputes and none of them includes the intervention of a third party,"
PCA said in a statement.

"This …