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twinlark
Member since Nov-17-05
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My wrap of our Chessgames Challenge: The World vs A Nickel, 2006 against ICCF Grandmaster Arno Nickel is at User: World Team Tribute.

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<The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne.>

― Geoffrey Chaucer, The Parliament of Birds

>> Click here to see twinlark's game collections.

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   twinlark has kibitzed 17516 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Apr-27-16 twinlark chessforum
 
twinlark: <Boomie> Skepticism is a handy menu item, especially when spiced with a touch of sarcasm and garnished with a sprig of rhetorical flourish. But I am wondering why you're here and what you want out of this discussion. I considered addressing some of your points, but at this ...
 
   Apr-20-16 Kenneth Rogoff (replies)
 
twinlark: <Colonel Mortimer: <twinlark:> +1:)> Well and good. Catch you later and elsewhere!
 
   Apr-20-16 Big Pawn chessforum (replies)
 
twinlark: TF is coming here to return BP's back rubs. Carry on, guys. Always good to see a nice bromance.
 
   Apr-19-16 TheFocus chessforum (replies)
 
twinlark: I see you lads have formed a mutual admiration society. Let me leave this page so that you can enjoy each other in the privacy of this forum.
 
   Apr-19-16 Annie K. chessforum (replies)
 
twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor> I'm still reading it. I'll get back to you in a few days.
 
   Apr-17-16 Abdel Irada chessforum (replies)
 
...
 
   Apr-15-16 Kibitzer's Café (replies)
 
twinlark: A cake stall, even. The country's bankrupt.
 
   Apr-14-16 Sergey Karjakin (replies)
 
twinlark: Response at Rogoff page.
 
   Apr-10-16 visayanbraindoctor chessforum (replies)
 
twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor> Good to have you back and looking forward to catching up with events. What a sad litany of events at the hospital in the previous few posts.
 
   Apr-09-16 Veselin Topalov
 
twinlark: Topalov was interviewed yesterday and commented that he would not try and contest the Candidates again, although he will continue playing chess for a while. That interview is here: http://chess-news.ru/node/21279&usg... I can't find the usual English translation so I had to rely on
 
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 271 OF 271 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Apr-23-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor>

I've been staying away from your forum and any comments about your story until I've finished reading it, as I don't want to be influenced by anyone else's comments.

I won't be long.

Apr-23-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <twinlark: Anne Applebaum>

You had me going there. I couldn't figure out how Applebaum connects. Then I noticed she's the one who wrote the book review for "Putinís Kleptocracy: Who Owns Russia?" by Karen Dawisha.

Well, forget the reviews then. The books are still there. Are they all making it all up or is there some truth to what they are saying? What seems to be true is that in a country with perhaps the most valuable resources, the people are suffering. Why?

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <The average Russian earns less than the average Indian. 110 people control 35% of Russia's wealth, which is far more concentration than any other country.>

Are the sources for these stats Russian? US? European?

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <Annie Applebaum is probably the most virulent russophobe on the planet after Zbigniew Brzezinski.>

OK it might be a question of biased sources.

<Boomie> I'm not sure if you have every lived for years in the provinces of a 3rd world country. From everything I have read and seen in the internet and news, my country's provinces are a lot worse off than Russia.

You can get immediate data on this just by connecting to the internet. How many ads do you see of Filipinas trying to sell themselves to the highest bidder in nearly every website around the world? It's not a joke. If you visit the internet shops in my place, you'll see that they're full of teenage girls trying to sell themselves to the highest bidder in real time. If you are wondering why, institutionalized poverty does this.

US itself has economic problems. Western sources that I have read say that US has piled up at least 17 trillion dollars of debt. What would you propose to do about this problem?

I get the impression that you have an ax to grind against Russia, encouraged by selectively reading only anti-Russian sources. IMO you should read pro-Russian Russian sources too.

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <twinlark>

'Over the past 40 days, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) has conducted a massive offensive in eastern Homs which effectively had government troops wrestle the cities of Palmyra and Qaryatayn from ISIS fighters.'

https://www.almasdarnews.com/articl...

'Russian, Syrian air forces rule the skies above east Syria'

https://www.almasdarnews.com/articl...

These seem to be the latest updates in Syria from a secular Syrian source. I have been opening for some time that the Syrian and Russian leadership are aiming for a military solution, while playing up to diplomatic double talk. When Russia sent its airforce, marines, spetznaz, and newest conventional weapons systems into Syria, I already suspected they were going for a military solution.

What comes after in Syria itself if the Wahabbi influenced Islamists are defeated? Given the hostility of the Baath nationalistic party against Kurds, I suspect Damascus and the SAA will move against the Kurds and grab north east Syria back under central control. Many Syrian Arab nationalists can't stomach the thought of a Federal Syria with a Kurdish autonomous region inside its borders.

The Russian leadership itself has not made any official comment on the idea of a Kurdish autonomous region. I believe it's main interests are to safeguard its bases and access to the Mediterranean and the Middle East and its resources (including oil) and prevent the rise of a Wahabbi theocracy near its border; not to promote a Kurdish state.

Will Russia abandon the Kurds? That is the question.

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <visayan> I have known several Filipinas who have come to the States after engaging in correspondence (in pre-internet days).

The practice is unfortunate, but merely a way to survive, which I am sure these young women regard as preferable to passing their entire existence in crushing poverty.

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <perfidious> You might be shocked that some of these young women are 12 to 15 years old, but you are exactly right. I'm merely pointing out the cause of it. Personally it actually pleases me to learn if my patients have daughters or sisters that are living in with foreigners, because it means that they could buy the meds that I keep on prescribing. It makes a difference between life or death for a sick or injured patient.
Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <visayanbraindoctor: <Annie Applebaum is probably the most virulent russophobe on the planet after Zbigniew Brzezinski.> OK it might be a question of biased sources.>

I'm sure there's a lot of bias going around this issue. As I mentioned, Applebaum is just the person that reviewed the book. She didn't write it. That book, "Putinís Kleptocracy: Who Owns Russia?" by Karen Dawisha, is copiously referenced and might serve as a starting point.

The sad trade in flesh is certainly active in Russia, too. Not to minimize the problem in the Philippines, which was looted by Marcos. The figures mentioned in the author's interview on the PBS News hour for the average incomes was about $1100 for India and $850 for Russia. I have no clue how they would get such stats. Perhaps I should try to track it down.

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: There sure is. The trick is working out where the actual information lies.

No doubt you have read all the news reports about the Russian jets buzzing the USS Donald Cook near the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad. Have a read of this article which provides a much fuller analysis of the background to, and the events, of that day.

Probably only Russian propaganda...but what is a fully armed US warship armed with anti-missile batteries doing near a Russian base stocked with missile batteries anyway? Imagine the uproar if the colours were reversed?

http://johnhelmer.net/?p=15464

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <visayanbraindoctor: <The average Russian earns less than the average Indian. 110 people control 35% of Russia's wealth, which is far more concentration than any other country.> Are the sources for these stats Russian? US? European?>

Exactly. My question is how much truth is there in all this? Have the Russian mobs with elements of the former KGB plundered the country? The Russian gangsters have had great success stealing enormous sums in the US without any help (I guess) of the CIA. Imagine what damage they could do to a country with the complicity of its government.

Apr-24-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <twinlark: what is a fully armed US warship armed with anti-missile batteries doing near a Russian base>

Kaliningrad is a stone's throw from the Polish border. The Poles would naturally want to keep an eye on it. However, a warship is a poor choice for that assignment. If they just wanted to train Poles, why not off the Polish coast? The whole incident seems like poking a rattlesnake with a stick. We'll probably never know the real motivation. Something to do with surveillance would be my guess.

Apr-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <Boomie>

Did you read the link I attached?

Apr-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <twinlark: Did you read the link I attached?>

Yes. Seems like a reasonable description of the events. They are also scratching their heads about what the heck the ship was doing. The training excuse makes little sense. If they want to play games, how about off the coast of N. Korea? Heh...

Apr-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: Or China...oh wait.

The article's description of events is quite a long way from the usual "Russian jets mysteriously buzz US ship exercising its right of navigation in international waters" narrative that was about all we got in the mainstream.

Apr-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <winlark: The article's description of events is quite a long way from the usual "Russian jets mysteriously buzz US ship exercising its right of navigation in international waters" narrative that was about all we got in the mainstream.>

The article is a classic case from which we ought to learn that reading one's news solely from one-sided sources makes us prone to brainwashing.

<Boomie>

The mass media lies to you all the time especially when it comes to politically loaded news, depending on which side of the fence they are sitting on. We have been lied to since birth. It's just up for us to discern it.

IMO the best way to see the most fundamental facts through all the mirrored dragon lies is to read news from both sides of the fence, and compare them. I would strongly suggest this. It usually becomes clearer which narrative sounds more reasonable. Never conclude from news coming from only one source.

Apr-25-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <visayanbraindoctor: The mass media lies to you all the time>

Naturally. "We can't handle the truth." Like anyone knows what the "truth" is...

A cursory search of various economic statistics does not support the claim of average income for Russia. I can't figure out if it's a lie or a damned lie...heh.

Still, the problem of criminal gangs looting the country needs to be addressed. How better off would the Philippines be with the 20 or so billion dollars that Marcos looted? The Russian mob probably considers that sum to be chump change.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <Boomie>

<Still, the problem of criminal gangs looting the country needs to be addressed.>

Without delving into it too deeply at this stage, I think this was more of a problem in the years after communism was overthrown in Russia, and Yeltsin allowed a general free for all that allowed foreign interests and local gangsters to seize large segments of the economy and infrastructure.

The advent of Putin actually reversed this, although the US-installed constitution and governance structures still need to be overhauled to suit Russian society rather than US ideology or interests.

In any case, one reason why Putin is hated is that he is not owned by oligarchs or gangsters and is in fact cordially hated by them for draining most of their power and influence. The really big ones like Khodorkovsky were thrown into jail and their assets seized.

I think we recently discussed this case and the giant suit that was awarded to shareholders of Yukos (including Khodorkovsky, the West's beloved Russian "dissident") $50 billion dollars damages, a suit which was recently overturned in another court in favour of Russia, who is now seeking Khodorkovsky's extradition on murder charges. Interpol's first reaction was to deny Russia's request on the grounds it resembled a political persecution, but Russia has submitted more evidence that Interpol is now considering.

The really big gangsters are basically all the humps that accumulated billions of dollars worth of wealth and assets during the breakdown of Russia in the 1990s.

The only real difference between these and the US oligarchs who cheated the system of hundreds of billions of dollars before and after the GFC via their glorified Ponzi schemes is that the US version of looting domestic resources is far more sophisticated than the comparatively smash-and-grab tactics employed by the Russian oligarchs/gangsters during the western-inspired shock economic doctrines that were introduced without any regulation or oversight into Russia after Yeltsin took office.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Colonel Mortimer: <In any case, one reason why Putin is hated is that he is not owned by oligarchs or gangsters and is in fact cordially hated by them for draining most of their power and influence.>

The sole reason, and there is only one, that Putin is hated by the West - he commits the crime of independence.

There was a joke going around when Yeltsin was 'in charge' - the only way he could damage the Russian economy was by returning his empty vodka bottles to the store..

The West loved Yeltsin, not because he opened Russia to the forces of 'democracy', but because he opened up the Russian economy to Western capitalist interests.

That's not part of the story, it's the whole story.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <twinlark: <Boomie>

<Still, the problem of criminal gangs looting the country needs to be addressed.>

Without delving into it too deeply at this stage, I think this was more of a problem in the years after communism was overthrown in Russia, and Yeltsin allowed a general free for all that allowed foreign interests and local gangsters to seize large segments of the economy and infrastructure.

The advent of Putin actually reversed this, although the US-installed constitution and governance structures still need to be overhauled to suit Russian society rather than US ideology or interests.

In any case, one reason why Putin is hated is that he is not owned by oligarchs or gangsters and is in fact cordially hated by them for draining most of their power and influence. The really big ones like Khodorkovsky were thrown into jail and their assets seized.>

<Colonel Mortimer: The West loved Yeltsin, not because he opened Russia to the forces of 'democracy', but because he opened up the Russian economy to Western capitalist interests.>

I more or less agree with these assessments.

<Boomie> You probably do not have an inkling of the perspective from where the above assessments are coming from, simply because you get all your news from the same side of the mass media fence.

There are some pro-Russian news sites that are easily accessible. Now and then I myself read RT and TASS, just to glean how the Russian side sees things.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  visayanbraindoctor: <twinlark: <visayanbraindoctor>

I've been staying away from your forum and any comments about your story until I've finished reading it, as I don't want to be influenced by anyone else's comments.>

I've started posting some revised chapters in Annie's forum.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: Yes. Sorry about the delay, been having to deal with some stuff.
Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <There are some pro-Russian news sites that are easily accessible. Now and then I myself read RT and TASS, just to glean how the Russian side sees things.>

You might also try looking at the reports and columns of people like Paul Craig Roberts, a former Reagan assistant secretary, Justin Raimondo, Pepe Escobar and Andre Vltchek for a more global and anti-imperial viewpoint. Also and Glenn Greenwald at the Intercept for a truth in news approach. These people are not pro-Russian but nor are they anti-Russian, choosing to view the global political and economic system as a whole.

Why anti-imperial? Just consider that what we have generally known as western Europe consists of countries that became rich with high standards of living from centuries of colonial plunder. These countries by and large have not abandoned their colonial mentality regardless of the nominally post-colonial era in which we purportedly live. They also differ from other aggressive powers insofar which were built on contiguous expansion, rather than colonialism.

The US is simply the latest and most powerful addition to this imperium, in one case simply confiscating the possessions of one empire, the Spanish, for itself on a wholesale basis and establishing itself by hook or by crook as the dominant empire on the planet.

Apr-26-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <Boomie>

In regard to the point about colonial enrischment, you may find this interesting: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/...

Apr-27-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Boomie: <twinlark>

Thanks for the interesting collection of maps. It follows Russia, for example, from the Kievan Rus to WWII. The Rus were Vikings, you know. Seems like the Vikings settled Russia and England. The 1945 map fails to include Russia. Perhaps they weren't sure if Eastern Europe countries constituted colonies. There must be some fine print on that. Is the Crimea considered a colony now? It can get pretty confusing.

The US is shown with the Philippines as its only colony, with post war Japan included. I guess it was a colony while the US rebuilt its economy. That's what colonists do, right? They improve the colony and then leave...heh. Today I don't think anyone would claim that either is a US colony, however I suspect you will say that the US colonies are held by surrogates. We mustn't let "The Truth" be tarnished by the facts.

Apr-27-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <Boomie>

Skepticism is a handy menu item, especially when spiced with a touch of sarcasm and garnished with a sprig of rhetorical flourish.

But I am wondering why you're here and what you want out of this discussion.

I considered addressing some of your points, but at this stage I'll leave it to you to research the fine print on your own and make it a bit clearer what is not rhetorical.

Maybe even take a look at some of the sources <visayanbraindoctor> and I have suggested.

Maybe we can talk some more then.

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