Daily Archives: January 13, 2017

Details, details…Curtea de Arges Monastery, Romania, photo via Curtea De Arges official web site.

Details, details…Curtea de Arges Monastery, Romania, photo via Curtea De Arges official web site.

Details, details…Curtea de Arges Monastery, Romania, photo via Curtea De Arges official web site.

Antonio Canova – Monumento funebre a Maria Cristina d’Austria (detail). Augustinerkirche Vienna.

Antonio Canova – Monumento funebre a Maria Cristina d’Austria (detail). Augustinerkirche Vienna.

Antonio Canova – Monumento funebre a Maria Cristina d’Austria (detail). Augustinerkirche Vienna.

Valea Sâmbetei, Munții Fagaras ❤

Valea Sâmbetei, Munții Fagaras ❤

Valea Sâmbetei, Munții Fagaras

A kind eye: Tsianina. A Creek-Cherokee singer. ca. 1920-1930. Source – Denver Public Library.

A kind eye : Tsianina. A Creek-Cherokee singer. ca. 1920-1930. Source – Denver Public Library.

Tsianina. A Creek-Cherokee singer. ca. 1920-1930. Source – Denver Public Library.

” Doni Tondo ” 1504- 1506/ Artist : Michelangelo/ Location: Galleria degli Uffizi, Firenze, Italia 

” Doni Tondo ” 1504- 1506 

Artist : Michelangelo 

Period : Haute Renaissance 

Location: Galleria degli Uffizi, Firenze, Italia 

Medium: Tempera on panel 
The * Doni Tondo * sometimes called the Holy Family with the infant St.John the Baptist was probably commissioned by Agnolo Doni to commemorate his marriage to Maddalena Strozzi the daughter of a powerful Tuscan family…it is the only finished panel painting by the mature Michelangelo and you can visit Uffizi Gallery in Florence to see this famous painting of the 16th century …

” Study of Peonies ” 1472-1473Artist : Martin SchongauerPeriod: Northern RenaissanceLocation: J.Paul Getty Museum , Los Angeles, USA

” Study of Peonies ” 1472-1473

Artist : Martin Schongauer

Period: Northern Renaissance

Location: J.Paul Getty Museum , Los Angeles, USA

Shirley: crayon 2 sketch

Shirley: crayon 2 sketch

Shirley: crayon 2 sketch

Observatorul Astronomic „Amiral Urseanu” | București

Observatorul Astronomic „Amiral Urseanu” | București

Observatorul Astronomic „Amiral Urseanu” | București

Correcting your COBRA POSTURE: If you do yoga…at least try to do it right!

Correcting your COBRA POSTURE: If you do yoga…at least try to do it right!

Correcting your COBRA POSTURE: If you do yoga…at least try to do it right!

  Bulevarde. 12 Ianuarie 2017. Din orașul meu, București.  Foto: Octav Dragan

Bulevarde. 12 Ianuarie 2017. Din orașul meu, București.

Canon 5 D Mark III, 70-200mm cu f 4. Multumesc F64. 

Foto: Octav Dragan

France 24 : FBI to be investigated over Clinton email probe

FBI to be investigated over Clinton email probe


The US Justice Department on Thursday said it would probe the FBI’s decision to announce an inquiry into Hillary Clinton’s emails shortly before the November presidential election, a move she has blamed as a factor in her defeat.

The Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General said in a statement that its investigation would focus in part on decisions leading up to public statements by FBI DirectorJames Comey regarding the Clinton investigation and whether they may have been based on “improper considerations.”

The controversy involved Clinton’s use of a private email server for official correspondence when she was secretary of state under President Barack Obama, including for messages that were later determined to contain classified information.

The office of Inspector General Michael Horowitz said it decided to open the review “in response to requests from numerous chairmen and ranking members of congressional oversight committees, various organizations and members of the public.”

Although the FBI ultimately decided not to refer Clinton’s case for prosecution, Democrats said Comey’s announcement damaged her with voters right before the election, and he faced complaints that his moves were politically motivated.

Law enforcement authorities, including the FBI, by custom do not disclose information about investigations that do not end in criminal charges.

If the review finds evidence of misconduct, any officials involved would be referred for disciplinary action.

In a statement, Comey said the FBI would cooperate fully and he was “grateful” to Horowitz for the probe.

“He is professional and independent and … I hope very much he is able to share his conclusions and observations with the public because everyone will benefit from thoughtful evaluation and transparency regarding this matter.”

Brian Fallon, Clinton’s spokesman, told MSNBC on Thursday that Comey’s actions “cried out for an independent review.”

Senator Dick Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the U.S. Senate said Comey’s statements were not “fair, professional or consistent with the policies of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

President-elect Donald Trump, who will be sworn in Jan. 20, will not have the power to dismiss the probe. But federal law permits U.S. presidents to dismiss inspectors general for federal agencies, as long as the president provides Congress a written justification for the removal 30 days in advance.

Often leading crowds in chants of “lock her up!” during the election campaign, Trump as a candidate repeatedly accused Clinton of illegal conduct over the emails. In a debate in October, he vowed she would “be in jail” over the matter if he became president, but he has since said he would not pursue prosecution.

Pre-election announcement

Comey publicly announced the status of the agency’s investigation into Clinton’s emails two times in 2016. In July, Comey held a press conference and testified before Congress to explain why the FBI had decided not to refer Clinton for prosecution, explaining that she was “extremely careless” but should not be charged with gross negligence or any other federal crime.

In October, less than two weeks before the Nov. 8 election, Comey sent members of Congress a letter saying the FBI was resuming the investigation because of new emails found on the computer of disgraced former Representative Anthony Weiner, the husband of one of Clinton’s top aides.

U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch had informed Comey the day before he sent the letter that doing so would conflict with official Justice Department guidance that instructs employees to “never select the timing of investigative steps … for the purpose of affecting any election.”

Comey asked whether he was being explicitly directed not to send the letter, and Lynch never gave Comey the order not to do so, a senior government official told Reuters at the time.

On Nov. 6, Comey said the investigation into Weiner’s computer produced no new evidence that would incriminate Clinton.

Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Thursday commended Horowitz for opening the probe.

“Conspicuously absent, though, is any specific reference to the attorney general’s failure to recuse herself from the probe, particularly after her meeting with former President (Bill) Clinton,” said Grassley in a statement.

That half-hour meeting, which took place in June on board Lynch’s plane while it was parked on the tarmac in Phoenix, drew criticism that Lynch was politically biased and unfit to oversee the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server.

Critics of Comey’s decisions also said he could be in violation of the Hatch Act, a 1939 law that bars government employees from interfering with U.S. elections.


France 24 : Obama ends special immigration policy for Cuban migrants

Obama ends special immigration policy for Cuban migrants


US President Barack Obama on Thursday ended a decades-old policy that allowed Cuban migrants who arrived illegally on US soil to stay.

In one of his final acts before leaving the White House, he scrapped rules allowing those fleeing communist Cuba and reaching American territory a fast track to permanent resident status.

Obama said the move would “bring greater consistency to our immigration policy.”

“Effective immediately, Cuban nationals who attempt to enter the United States illegally and do not qualify for humanitarian relief will be subject to removal, consistent with US law and enforcement priorities,” he said in a statement.

The Cuban government welcomed the decision on Thursday, calling it “an important step forward in bilateral relations.”

Preferential immigration treatment for Cuban immigrants enticed millions to flee the island, fueling economic stasis and a severe “brain drain.”

Meanwhile in the United States, the growing Cuban-American population has become a potent political, cultural and economic force.

There are around 1.8 million Cuban-Americans today, including two Republican 2016 presidential candidates, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz.

Easing tensions

Cuban issues stand at the forefront of politics in the crucial swing state of Florida, making politicians extremely wary about revoking the policy and lifting economic sanctions against Havana.

But the immigration policy came under pressure as Cuban-American politics have become less strident, with some viewing it as anachronistic and encouraging dangerous sea voyages in makeshift rafts.

Passed in 1966, the Cuban Adjustment Act has offered any citizen of Cuba admission and permanent residence in the United States after spending one year in the country, with no yearly quota on immigrants.

However, then-president Bill Clinton decided in 1995 that Cubans intercepted at sea would be sent home under the policy Obama scrapped today, which became known as “wetfoot/dryfoot.”

Today’s decision means normal immigration rules will also apply to Cubans arriving at land borders.

Obama’s rapprochement with Cuba and his historic visit to Havana last year had fueled speculation the policy would be scrapped.

That prompted a spike in the number of migrants attempting the often perilous trip, many fearing normalized relations would bring an end to the special status granted Cuban immigrants at the border.

Geoff Thale of the Washington Office on Latin America, a research and advocacy group, welcomed the change.

The old policy “seemed particularly unfair when children and families fleeing violence in Central America are subject to deportation,” he said. “This change ‘normalizes’ our treatment of Cuban immigrants.”

Exile fury

However, Rubio, a senator from Florida, called Obama’s decision “absurd.”

“It is in fact President Obama’s failed Cuba policy, combined with the Castro regime’s increased repression, that has led to a rise in Cuban migration since 2014,” he said in a statement.

“I am heartened by the fact that in a week we will have a new administration committed to discarding the failed Cuba policy of the last two years,” he added.

Obama said the decision was another step toward normal relations.

“By taking this step, we are treating Cuban migrants the same way we treat migrants from other countries.”

“The Cuban government has agreed to accept the return of Cuban nationals who have been ordered removed, just as it has been accepting the return of migrants interdicted at sea,” he added.

“With this change, we will continue to welcome Cubans as we welcome immigrants from other nations, consistent with our laws.”

But many Cubans in Panama — a waypoint on their arduous overland trek to the United States — reacted with fury.

“Obama has screwed all Cubans,” Yadiel Cruz, a 33-year-old in a Catholic shelter in Panama City, told AFP on learning the US president had suddenly made it tougher for migrants like him to get into America.


BBC News: Cyprus talks: Erdogan dismisses full Turkish troop withdrawal

Cyprus talks: Erdogan dismisses full Turkish troop withdrawal – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-38609828

BBC News: Icy storm lashes France and Germany causing hardship

Icy storm lashes France and Germany causing hardship – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-38607862

BBC News: Donald Trump blasts Clinton after probe of FBI launched

Donald Trump blasts Clinton after probe of FBI launched – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-38611474

Today’s Holiday:Death of George Fox

Today’s Holiday:
Death of George Fox

George Fox (1624-1691) was the founder of the Society of Friends, or Quakers, which he organized in 1650 to protest the overly formal religion of his time. Fox believed that creeds and scriptures were unimportant in religion; all that really counted was the divine light of Christ as it manifested itself in all people. Church was merely a gathering of friends who were guided by the Inner Light and who were thus able to provide guidance for each other. Quakers all over the world observe the anniversary of their founder’s death in their meetinghouses.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Today’s Birthday:Antoinette Bourignon (1616)

Today’s Birthday:
Antoinette Bourignon (1616)

Bourignon was a Flemish Christian mystic. After spending a short time in a convent and as head of an orphanage, she gathered a fanatical following at Amsterdam, believing herself divinely directed to restore the pure spirit of the Gospel. Moving from place to place, she took her printing press with her and disseminated her teachings. Her mystical ideas found particular favor in Scotland, where Bourignianism was declared a heresy. Why did Bourignon flee her home in 1636?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

This Day in History:First Successful Escape from an Aircraft Using the Ejection Seat (1942)

This Day in History:
First Successful Escape from an Aircraft Using the Ejection Seat (1942)

Ejection seats are used in aircraft to quickly propel occupants out in an emergency. Today, they are fired by an explosive charge, but the first ejection seats were powered by compressed air. One of the first aircrafts to be fitted with such a system was the German Heinkel He 280 prototype jet fighter. While testing the He 280 during WWII, pilot Helmut Schenk became the first person to use an ejection seat to make an emergency escape from an aircraft. What went wrong during his test flight?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Quote of the Day:Henry David Thoreau

Quote of the Day:
Henry David Thoreau

I have never felt lonesome, or in the least oppressed by a sense of solitude, but once, and that was a few weeks after I came to the woods, when, for an hour, I doubted if the near neighborhood of man was not essential to a serene and healthy life.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Article of the Day:Cortisol

Article of the Day:

Often referred to as the “stress hormone” because of its involvement in the body’s stress response, cortisol is the principal steroid hormone produced by the adrenal cortex. It increases blood pressure and blood sugar levels and can act as an immunosuppressant. Hydrocortisone, or synthetic cortisol, is used to treat a number of conditions, including inflammation, allergies, collagen diseases, and adrenocortical insufficiency. In humans, cortisol levels peak at what time of day?: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Word of the Day:paling

Word of the Day:

Definition: (noun) A fence made of upright pickets.
Synonyms: picket fence
Usage: Between it and Judge Driscoll’s house there was only a grassy yard, with a paling fence dividing the properties in the middle.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Innovation is only innovative if it is executed!

Check out @Celgene_Myeloma’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/Celgene_Myeloma/status/819900308604198913?s=09

Innovation is only innovative if it is executed!

De la Viorel Simionescu: 2 Mai 1985_O dupamiaza in campingul nudistilor cu vizitatori calare _ 2

2 Mai 1985_O dupamiaza in campingul nudistilor cu vizitatori calare _ 2


Cetatea FĂGĂRAŞULUI: dragostea la -15*C

Assange agrees to extradition if US releases whistleblower


Assange agrees to extradition if US releases whistleblower

AFPJanuary 12, 2017

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange addressing the media and holding a printed report of the judgement of the UN's Working Group on Arbitrary Detention on his case from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in central London on February 5, 2016

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange addressing the media and holding a printed report of the judgement of the UN’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention on his case from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in central London on February 5, 2016 (AFP Photo/BEN STANSALL )


London (AFP) – WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will agree to be extradited to the United States if President Barack Obama grants clemency to the former US soldier Chelsea Manning, jailed for leaking documents, the company said on Thursday.

“If Obama grants Manning clemency Assange will agree to US extradition despite clear unconstitutionality of DoJ (US Department of Justice) case,” WikiLeaks wrote on Twitter.

Assange has been living in the Ecuadoran embassy in London since June 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden to face sexual assault allegations.

The Australian former computer hacker said he fears Stockholm will in turn extradite him to the US, where he angered Washington over WikiLeaks’ publication of thousands of US military and diplomatic documents leaked by former US soldier Manning.

Manning is currently serving a 35-year sentence in solitary confinement for handing over the 700,000 sensitive documents from the US State Department.

Supporters of the transgender soldier are putting their hopes in a pardon by Obama before he leaves office later this month, although the White House has said the president will not be granting her clemency.

Manning has already made two suicide attempts and currently has an appeal pending before a military court.

Washington has maintained the threat of prosecuting Assange over the 2010 leak, though no charges have been filed.

WikiLeaks’ post on Twitter was accompanied by a letter addressed to US Attorney General Loretta Lynch, in which Assange’s lawyer Barry Pollack argues there is no legitimate basis for continuing the investigation into the WikiLeaks founder.


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