Posts Tagged ‘book’

Shaking, Quaking, and Freezing

by Alan Caruba on Sunday, August 31st, 2014

This is article 328 of 328 in the topic Global Warming
By Alan Caruba
Have you noticed how much earthquake and volcanic activity has been occurring lately?
There was a major earthquake in Napa, California on Sunday, August 24th as well as considerable volcanic activity from Iceland to Papua, New Guinea. August was also a month that set records for colder U.S. temperatures.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), there were some 1,097 “low max” temperature records broken in the U.S. between August 1 and August 23, meaning that the maximum temperature during that time period was the lowest it has ever been. NOAA reported that summer across much of the U.S. has been colder than normal.
Most of us, after decades of global warming predictions that became more and more absurd, rising sea levels drowning Manhattan and Miami, an upsurge in hurricanes, forest fires, and every other calamity, have concluded that none of these things have happened in the volume or intensity predicted. In the 70s we were told the Earth would get colder. In the 80’s and 90’s we were told it would get warmer.
A new book is advising us to prepare for a serious cold spell that is not only going to arrive in twenty to thirty years, but will likely stay around to become the next ice age. This time, though, the prediction is based on well-established climate cycles and the behavior of the Sun that was known as far back as Galileo’s day.
The new “normal” is colder weather and this is because the Sun’s sunspot activity has been in a cyclical decline since about 1998, producing the latest cooling cycle for the Earth.
In combination with the earthquakes and volcanic activity, says John L. Casey’s new book, “Dark Winter: How the Sun is Causing a 30-Year Cold Spell” ($24.95, Humanix Books, Boca Raton, FL) what we’re really looking at is a repeat of the Dalton Minimum, a solar sunspot minimum that occurred between 1793 and 1830. His earlier book, “Cold Sun” addressed this cyclical phenomenon.
Casey asks “Will we also experience volcanic activity that will add to the solar cooling?” and the answer, given the fifty active volcanoes around the world, is that “We should expect to deal with multiple geological disasters, including volcanoes and earthquakes, during the next solar hibernation.” We have in fact already entered that “hibernation.”
Casey is the president of the Space and Science Research Corporation. It specializes in independent research regarding the coming decades of cold weather. For thirty-five years Casey has been active in science and high tech industries. He has been a national space policy advisor to the White House and Congress, and a former space shuttle engineer, consultant to NASA headquarters.
Casey has formulated a “Bicentennial Cycle of 206 years correlated with near 100 percent accuracy to every major cold-temperature period of the past 1,200 years.” His Theory of “Relational Cycles of Solar Activity” accounts for its effects and those of other solar cycles.
He is not the first scientist to recognize the relationship of diminished sunspot activity and cooling cycles, but he is the first to have synthesized the earlier work of others who made comparable observations.

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Big Fat Lies About Fat

by Alan Caruba on Thursday, August 21st, 2014

This is article 71 of 71 in the topic Food/Natural Remedies
By Alan Caruba
Americans are obsessed with fat; either with eating it or being it. We’ve been told that we’re too fat and we’re told that eating fat is bad for you.

Being fat is your own business. You’ll feel better if you lose a few pounds, but you will enjoy your next meal if it has a fat content rather than being a bland cereal…which explains why so many cereals today have some surgery covering or content.

The fact is you can eat almost anything you like and remain a healthy weight if you just don’t eat too much of it. It’s not rocket science.
For politicians, however, controlling what we eat has become an obsession. A demented Democratic Representative, Rosa DeLauro, from Connecticut, has proposed a bill—the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax Act—SWEET for short, that would penalize people one-cent for every teaspoon of sugar used in their drink of choice. It’s none of her business, let along the government’s, what you want to drink.
This obsession with what we eat has been personified by First Lady Michelle Obama who championed the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kinds Act that overhauled nutrition standards affecting more than thirty million children in schools around the nation.
It authorized the U.S. Department of Agriculture to set standards for all food and beverages sold during the school day. The law includes vending machines, snack cards, and daytime fundraisers. That now means that campus bake sales, the most popular fundraiser, now has to pay heed to a federal law that forbids selling cakes, cupcakes, or cookies.
Laws like this are a perfect example of how intrusive into the ordinary lives of Americans of all ages are laws that are slowly killing the concept of personal choice and personal freedom. They also demonstrate how wrong such laws are when they are written and passed by people who are clueless about nutrition.
A recent Gallup poll on “consumption habits” revealed that “Nearly twice as many Americans say they are actively trying to avoid fat in their diet (56%) as say they are actively avoiding carbohydrates (29%). However, fewer Americans are avoiding fat now more than a decade ago.”
Over the years as a book reviewer and avid reader, I have read “You Must Eat Meat” by Max Ernest Jutte, MD and Frank Murray, and “The Cholesterol Delusion” by Ernest N. Curtis, MD. Both books authoritatively debunk what Americans have repeatedly been told about meat and cholesterol, but my earliest advisor on these and other food related topics was Rebecca Caruba,my Mother, who taught gourmet cooking for three decades in local adult schools and who authored two cookbooks. She was a keen student of nutrition and early on warned students against margarine, telling them to use real butter and to enjoy all manner of meats, cheeses, and other foods we are constantly told are not good for us.
At this point I want to add Nina Teicholz to the list of heroes like my Mother and the authors of the two books mentioned above. A skilled journalist, she has written a 479-page book, “The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat, and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet” ($28.99, Simon & Schuster).

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Jimmy Carter’s Love for Terrorists

by Alan Caruba on Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

This is article 138 of 138 in the topic History
By Alan Caruba
Jimmy Carter was elected President for one reason—Richard M. Nixon. The feeling in the nation was that the born-again Sunday school teacher and Georgia Governor was the perfect antithesis of the President who was forced to resign over the Watergate scandal. He defeated Gerald Ford, Nixon’s Vice President who was largely punished for the 1974 pardon he gave the disgraced Nixon.
In a similar fashion Ronald Reagan was elected President to replace Carter who was widely seen as a failure for both his domestic and foreign policies. For the years since, Carter was understood to have been the worst President, but a recent Quinnipiac University poll of 1,446 registered voters ranked Obama as the worst since the end of World War II, granting Carter an approval rating four times higher than Obama.
I never liked Carter and Reagan’s election in 1980 marked the beginning of my transition from liberal to conservative; one that I suspect occurred for many others as well. Larry Bell, a NewsMax contributor, commenting on the Quinnipiac poll, noted that “Just as with Obama, the Carter administration had inherited a recession and did little to improve a weak economy.”
After Carter took office Bell noted that “unemployment continued to rise, inflation reached 13 percent, and interest rates approached 20 percent.” Reagan set about improving the economy, rebuilt our military strength, confronted the Soviet Union, and the 1980s are remembered fondly by those who lived through his two terms.
Carter faced problems with Iran that had seized twenty U.S. diplomats in 1979 and held them for 444 days, unresponsive to his efforts to free them. A military attempt failed, killing thirty soldiers when our helicopters crashed. I have always thought that the Iranians took Reagan’s measure and feared what he would do. They released the hostages the same day he was first sworn into office.
On August 5, USA Today reported that Carter had “called upon the West to recognize the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas as a legitimate ‘political actor’ that represents the bulk of the Palestine population.”
Extremely critical of Israel’s military operation to protect its citizens against the deluge of rockets coming out of Gaza, Carter and former Irish president Mary Robinson had their views published in a Foreign Policy article, saying “There is no humane or legal justification for the way the Israeli Defense Forces are conducting this war.”
Carter has never met a despot, from Soviet premier Leonid Brezhnev to Bashar Assad and his father, Hafez, to the gang that runs Hamas that he didn’t like. That is the quintessential trait of liberals who have always been attracted to despots. They’re the ones who wear Che Guevara t-shirts.
Carter, different from most evangelicals, has never given any evidence of respecting Jews or Israel.

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Bill Clinton and his alleged ‘Energizer’

by Doug Powers on Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

This is article 2 of 4 in the topic Clintons

Unconfirmed, unsubstantiated, and totally believable:

Bill Clinton reportedly has a buxom blond mistress who visits so often when Hillary Clinton isn’t home in Chappaqua that the former president’s Secret Service detail have given her an unofficial code name: Energizer.

This is according to Ronald Kessler in “The First Family Detail: Secret Service Agents Reveal the Hidden Lives of Presidents,” due Aug. 5 from Crown Forum.
[...]
The book, portions of which I’ve obtained, says none of the normal protocols is followed when Energizer arrives in her SUV, sometimes just minutes after Hillary has left the Westchester house.

Kessler quotes a supervisor informing a new agent: “You don’t stop her, you don’t approach her, you just let her go in.”

Energizer, who is described as charming and friendly, sometimes brought cookies to the agents, according to the book excerpts.
[...]
Kessler also reports that Hillary’s Secret Service detail informs Bill’s Secret Service detail when the former first lady is coming home, so Bill has time to get Energizer off the property and clean up any evidence.

But once, the warning came late. “The agents had to scramble to get Energizer out of there so there wasn’t some kind of big confrontation.”

They call her “Energizer” because when Bubba finds out she’s on the way over, he does this:

By the way, Bill Clinton’s Secret Service detail’s code name for Hillary is “Saltpeter.”

I’ll be surprised if any of the above story about Bill Clinton is true — it would be so unlike him.

- See more at: http://dougpowers.com/2014/07/22/bill-clinton-and-his-alleged-energizer/#sthash.Yd1ik3rt.dpuf

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Mrs. Obama’s Operation VA Scandal Distraction

by Michelle Malkin on Saturday, July 19th, 2014

This is article 302 of 303 in the topic US Military

Screen Shot 2014-07-18 at 9.20.36 AMMrs. Obama’s Operation VA Scandal Distraction
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2014

Barack and Michelle Obama are quite the diversionary tag-team. He blames everyone else for his problems. She takes credit for progress on his behalf that he doesn’t deserve and distracts public attention from his avalanche of failures with endless feel-good photo-ops.

While the shirker in chief golfed and grubbed for money at closed-door celebrity fundraisers this week, his East Wing flak-catcher provided him cunning cover on the still-festering VA scandals.

Mrs. Obama flew to Los Angeles to declare a war or something on veterans’ homelessness. At a summit with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Wednesday, she said the neglect of our men and women in uniform, abandoned on the streets after returning from battle, should “horrify all of us.”

Of course, vet homelessness is a shame, and it should be eradicated. But the timing of Mrs. Obama’s remarks — not to mention her glaring omissions — is calculated cynicism on Louboutins.

President Obama’s human deflector sprinkled her remarks with various anecdotes about vets struggling to get back on their feet. But not once in her 2,700-word speech did Mrs. Obama mention the horrifying stories of veterans neglected, abused, manipulated and crushed by corrupt VA bureaucrats under her husband’s administration.

Instead, she spent the rest of the speech bragging about “my husband” launching this initiative and that program to do right by the vets.

Various federal agencies live-tweeted the event; Mrs. Obama’s fan base oohed and aahed. And the Veterans Affairs media relations and social media tracking teams undoubtedly high-fived each other as they tallied up the positive press.

Meanwhile, more whistleblowers who will never gain Mrs. Obama’s public sympathy or accolades gave damning testimony about the “culture of corruption” at the VA. One told Capitol Hill lawmakers about how her car was dented after she reported manipulation of veterans’ benefits claims in Philadelphia. Others were put on leave or harassed. “Retaliation culture is a cancer,” said Dr. Christian Head, who was investigating time-card fraud inside the Greater Los Angeles VA Health Care System.

A new report by the VA inspector general provided more details of how bureaucrats made pending benefits cases vanish and mishandled or intentionally lost paperwork related to claims in a mad attempt to reduce the 600,000-case backlog. Linda Halliday, an assistant inspector general, ticked off all the new targets of investigative probes: Baltimore, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Oakland, Houston and Little Rock, Ark.

Asked whether she believes in the integrity of data being supplied to her by VA officials, Halliday told the House Veterans Affairs Committee: “No. … I don’t want to say I trust them.” Goodbye, hope and change. Hello, lying liars.

And how’s this for horrifying: Yet another VA IG report released this week affirmed that the Baltimore VA “had inappropriately stockpiled about 8,000 documents” containing sensitive personal information and processed and unprocessed claims-related mail with the potential to affect benefits payments. “More than 9,500 documents and 80 claims folders lacked the oversight necessary to ensure timely claims processing,” investigators said.

Translation: Feckless VA drones sat on their plump, worthless backsides while the desperate entreaties of our nation’s best and bravest clogged their do-nothing desks.

The horrors of government ineptitude and malpractice are behemoth.

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Is Apple where really controversial old Obama administration employees go after they leave government?

by John Lott on Monday, July 14th, 2014

This is article 62 of 65 in the topic Business
Among the major Obama administration employees Apple hired were former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson in 2013.  Jackson, who tried to hide government communication by using an EPA pseudonym “Richard Windsor,” had a very controversial record.  “Windsor” was granted at least six ethics and cyber-security certifications.  From the Washington Examiner:

Among the certificates awarded to “Richard Windsor” was a Nov. 2, 2009 “Certificate of Completion” for “E-mail Records Management.” Jackson had only been appointed by President Obama as EPA’s top executive a few months prior to the certification. . . .

During the ensuing years, however, EPA IT department officials awarded additional certificates to “Richard Windsor,” including three for completion of the agency’s “Scholastica Decentia,” the Certificate for Ethical Behavior, in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

“Richard Windsor” was a top student of ethical behavior in 2010, compiling 100 percent scores for the “Risk” and “Cyber Threats” portions of the course, but a 50 percent score on the “EPA Information” portion dropped Windsor’s total score to 83 percent.

Jackson’s use of the fake name became known in 2012 with Horner’s book, The Liberal War Against Transparency, in which he made public a memo from EPA to the National Records Archives Administration describing the agency’s creation of the “Richard Windsor” moniker. . . .

Jackson resigned as EPA administrator in December 2012 shortly after her agency’s inspector-general announced an investigation of the “Richard Windsor” scandal.

Now it looks like they are about to hire Former White House Press Secretary Jay Carney:

Carney would replace Katie Cotton, who stepped down from the position earlier this year. It has previously been reported that Apple is looking for an external candidate to lead its communications team in the hopes of finding someone “friendlier,” although several internal candidates were also being considered. . . .

Carney is reportedly being considered for such roles at several companies, including Uber.

How Carney gets identified as a ‘Friendlier” candidate isn’t exactly obvious to me.  The other question is why anyone would trust what Carney had to say.

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Hillary Clinton Stumbles to “Worst Week” in Washington

by Roger Aronoff on Monday, July 14th, 2014

This is article 1 of 4 in the topic Clintons

Over the last couple of weeks, Hillary Clinton has excited the press with gaffe after gaffe about money and influence. In fact, The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza credits her with having had the “worst week” of anyone in Washington, D.C. last week.  Campaign metaphors are ripe in the press when it comes to Clinton these days. “Actually, maybe the book tour is a perfect encapsulation of what a Clinton campaign might look like,” comments Cillizza. “And for that, Hillary Clinton, you had the worst week in Washington. Congrats, or something.”

Even Politico acknowledges that Clinton has had a “rough couple of weeks” and that the “majority of attention has been paid to Clinton’s gaffes.”

Politico’s Maggie Haberman writes, in the assessment of Clinton’s qualifications as a candidate, that this is only early in the game and she is “subsisting on a tiny infrastructure.” This, directly after she calls for more “authenticity” from the potential candidate. Which is it? Does the staff speak for candidate Clinton, or does the candidate’s past reputation and words speak for her well enough?

Haberman also comments that “One recurring question reporters and donors have had is whether Huma Abedin, Clinton’s longtime aide, has resumed her central spot in Clinton’s orbit after the messiness surrounding her husband, Anthony Weiner, during the 2013 mayoral race.” We would say probably yes. After all, in what Politico has called a book “written so carefully not to offend that it will fuel the notion that politics infuses every part of her life,” Clinton takes 400 words to defend Abedin. She describes Abedin in Hard Choices as a “trusted aide,” an “American patriot” with “generosity of spirit” who has been falsely accused of “being a secret agent of the Muslim Brotherhood.” Abedin was pictured last year sitting with Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Mohamed Magid, who didn’t make it onto the guest list for President Obama’s annual iftar dinner while other less controversial Muslims did. (ISNA is connected to the Muslim Brotherhood.) Andrew McCarthy—who successfully prosecuted the “Blind Sheikh” for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, and the author of several books, including Willful Blindness: A Memoir of the Jihad—has discussed Abedin’s Brotherhood ties at length.

And this is a real media scandal: Ties to the Muslim Brotherhood aren’t even considered controversial by our press, instead they are outright ignored. Former congressman Allen West, a retired Army colonel and a member of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi, has detailed in a new column how the Obama administration, and the Hillary Clinton-led State Department, have embraced the Muslim Brotherhood, including having some in official advisory positions in the administration—including in Homeland Security. Incredible.

One of the latest Clinton gaffes, which takes the cake, originated with her husband, Bill Clinton, who naturally came to his wife’s defense about the family finances. According to The Hill, “He said Hillary Clinton had in the past offered legal assistance for poor people and fought for paid leave for pregnant mothers in the 1970s. And he explained that he and the former secretary of State go to their local grocery store on the weekends and talk to regular people.”

Indeed, Hillary Clinton went to work for “one of America’s most radical law firms,” Treuhaft, Walker and Burnstein, in 1971.

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James Madison: The Indispensible Founder

by Alan Caruba on Friday, June 27th, 2014

This is article 135 of 138 in the topic History

“I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents. … If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the General Welfare, the Government is no longer a limited one, possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one. …

The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. … The government of the United States is a definite government, confined to specified objects. It is not like the state governments, whose powers are more general.

Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government. … There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations.”
- James Madison

When people are asked to name the Founding Fathers of the nation, they usually reel off Washington, Adams, and Jefferson, the first, second and third Presidents in addition to their earlier role in guiding the Revolution to success.

Occasionally, someone who, like myself, loves history will add Madison, the fourth President, but Lynne Cheney’s new biography of Madison rightly identifies him as the man most responsible “for creating the United States of America in the form we know it today.” It was Madison who guided the process by which the Founders arrived at the Constitution, contributing the fundamental principles it incorporated and writing the Bill of Rights, amendments that ensured its ratification by the original states.

Cheney’s biography, “James Madison: A Life Considered” ($36.00, Viking) benefits not only from her scholarship, but from her facility with the written word, making it a continual pleasure to read for a book of 563 pages, including its notes, bibliography, and index. If you were to set aside the summer to read just one book, this would be the one I would recommend.

If Cheney’s name rings a bell, it is because she is the wife of former Vice President Dick Cheney, but she is also a Ph.D. who has been studying Madison since 1987 when she was a member of the Commission on the Bicentennial of the Constitution. These days she is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

The Cheney’s reside in Wilson, Wyoming. She is making the rounds of radio and television shows to promote her book and, most notably, interviewers tend to ignore her book in order to pry an opinion out of her about current events and politics. One gets the feeling that most did not read her book.

Those short in stature and, compared to the other Founders, quite young, all who came to know him swiftly developed a profound respect for his intellect and his knowledge of how governments were structured with some succeeding while others failed. When Madison spoke, they listened. There were in those days “factions” (which today we call political parties) that opposed his and the other Founder’s views.

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Fifty Years Later, Being Black in America

by Alan Caruba on Thursday, June 26th, 2014

This is article 158 of 162 in the topic Racism

Fifty years ago, 1964, the civil rights movement that had begun in the 1950s achieved its goal with the Civil Rights Act and a year later with the Voting Rights Act.

A remarkable book, “Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed”, by Jason L. Riley, a member of the Wall Street Journal’s editorial board who is black, should be must-reading by Afro-Americans and white Americans to understand that, while there has been progress for those blacks who achieved an education and moved into the middle and upper classes of America, far too many blacks have embraced a culture that has doomed them to poverty, prison, and a sense of victimization.

Having lived through the civil rights movement, observing it from the vantage point of having seen the segregation and prejudice that had afflicted blacks prior to it, I was not surprised by the evidence put forth in Riley’s book of self-inflicted failure to embrace the opportunities as other groups have done.

On June 16 Riley wrote an opinion article, “How Not to Help Black Americans”, saying that “The Obama presidency is evidence that blacks have progressed politically. But if the rise of other racial and ethnic groups is any indication, black social and economic problems are less about politics than about culture. The persistently high black jobless rate is more a consequence of unemployability than of discrimination in hiring.”

Statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau in 2012 are testimony to the progress black Americans have made since 1964. Out of 313 million Americans, blacks constitute 44.5 million and 83.2% of blacks age 25 and older had a high school diploma while 18.7% had a bachelor’s degree or higher; 1.6 million had an advanced degree. Blacks can take pride in their 2.4 military veterans.

However, the median income of black households in 2012 was $33,321, compared with the rest of the nation at $51,017 and the poverty rate was 27.2% while nationally it was 15%.

Referring to the vast welfare state in America, Riley said “One reason that Uncle Sam’s altruism has not been successful is because the government is attempting to do for blacks what blacks can only do for themselves.”

The most depressing statistic, however, is the 40% of some 2.1 million male inmates in jails and prisons in America who are black. Statistically, blacks are far more likely to be the victims of crimes by other blacks than by non-blacks. In his book, Riley says “Black cultural attitudes toward work, authority, dress, sex, and violence have also proven counterproductive, inhibiting the development of the kind of human capital that has led to socioeconomic advancement for other groups.”

One black who has succeeded is Barack Hussein Obama, twice elected President of the United States of America. It is likely he will be the last black American to hold that office for a generation or more to come because he has done more harm to the nation in six and a half years than any previous President. The only part of the population that does not seem to grasp this has been black Americans.

Ironically, the results of a survey by Rasmussen Reports released in July 2013 found that “Americans consider blacks more likely to be racist than whites and Hispanics.

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How Hillary Clinton has poorly treated Secret Service Agents

by John Lott on Thursday, June 19th, 2014

This is article 25 of 27 in the topic 2016 Elections

How someone treats low level people often tells you a lot about a person.  From the UK Daily Mail:

If Hillary Clinton runs, and wins the Presidential race in 2016, the Republicans won’t be the only ones with trepidation. The Secret Service, who have tangled with Hillary since she became First Lady in 1993, will also be quaking in their lace-ups. Hillary has been known to hurl a book at the back of the head of one agent driving her in the Presidential limo accusing him of eavesdropping, forget her ps and qs by never thanking her protectors and lob profanity-laced orders when she just wanted the agents to carry her bags – a job not on agents’ ‘to do’ list.’Stay the f**k away from me! Just f*****g do as I say!!!’ she is quoted as saying to an agent who refused to carry her luggage in the book Unlimited Access by FBI agent Gary Aldridge. . . .
Emmett launches a stinging attack on the Clinton administration staff he used to protect – branding them arrogant and claiming that ex-First Lady Hillary Clinton was aloof. He tells how Hillary never said ‘thank you’ to agents . . . .

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