Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for July 5th, 2018

Trump’s tariffs start to bite—domestically

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That’s from a Kevin Drum post worth reading.

Written by Leisureguy

5 July 2018 at 2:25 pm

Adding trekking poles to the walk

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UPDATE: In my reading today, I learned that what I want are not trekking poles (use on trails and back-country for day-long hikes) but Nordic walking poles:

See also “Nordic Walking Poles vs. Trekking Poles: What’s the Difference?” /update

The Eldest called with information that trekking poles greatly improve the exercise benefit of walking, so I looked through these reviews and decided on the No. 4 rated pole: Montem Ultra Strong, $50 (including shipping in the US).

It will be interesting to see what the walk is like with the poles. This provides an idea: Nordic Walking Guide.

UPDATE: And see also this interesting post: “How Walking Poles Changed My Mind About Fitness Walking.”

Written by Leisureguy

5 July 2018 at 2:04 pm

Posted in Daily life, Health

Inside the Online Campaign to Whitewash the History of Donald Trump’s Russian Business Associates

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Lachlan Markay and Dean Sterling Jones report at the Daily Beast:

A mystery client has been paying bloggers in India and Indonesia to write articles distancing President Donald Trump from the legal travails of a mob-linked former business associate.

Spokespeople for online reputation management companies in the two countries confirmed that they had been paid to write articles attempting to whitewash Trump’s ties to Felix Sater, a Russian-born businessman who, with former Russian trade minister Tevfik Arif, collaborated with the Trump Organization on numerous real estate deals from New York to the former Soviet Union.

The campaign appears designed to influence Google search results pertaining to Trump’s relationship with Sater, Arif, and the Bayrock Group, a New York real estate firm that collaborated with Trump on a series of real estate deals, and recruited Russian investors for potential Trump deals in Moscow.

Sater—who once had an office at New York’s Trump Tower, Trump Organization business cards, and claims to have worked as a senior adviser to Trump—has recently emerged as a key figure in the federal investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

In the lead-up to the election, Sater worked extensively with Trump attorney Michael Cohen in a failed effort to build a Trump Tower in Moscow with the aid of Russian leader Vladimir Putin, which Sater said would help Trump win the presidency. According to statements made by Cohen last year, Trump personally signed-off on the project.

Sater and Cohen also collaborated on a proposal early in the Trump administration to resolve the years-long conflict in Ukraine’s Crimea region, and to lift sanctions imposed against Russia for their military intervention in and annexation of the region. According to a recent BBC report, Sater even helped Cohen facilitate a meeting between Trump and Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko, for which Cohen was secretly paid $400,000. Sater and Cohen both denied that report.

Sater’s relationship with Trump and his family goes back much further. The Russian emigre has explored real estate deals in Moscow since the late 1980s. When the Trump Organization took interest, Sater was directly involved in their business efforts in the country, even accompanying Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr. on a 2006 visit to Moscow by request of the elder Trump.  The elder Trump now says he doesn’t even remember Sater.

In 2010, a one-time executive at Bayrock brought a lawsuit against the firm. “For most of its existence, [Bayrock] was substantially and covertly mob-owned and operated,” the suit alleged. Bayrock and Sater denied the allegations, and the lawsuit—which at one point listed Trump and Ivanka as co-defendants—was settled in February.

In the meantime, an attorney for the plaintiff in that suit had brought another lawsuit alleging tax fraud by Bayrock. That second suit, which was based on evidence suppressed by the judge during the first, was dismissed last year.

That’s when someone began paying for blog posts about the case.

The Daily Beast previously reported that a Pakistani blogger had been paid to write an article for the Huffington Post’s now-defunct contributor platform hailing the dismissal of the tax fraud case. That blogger, who went by the handle Waqas KH, said his client, whom he declined to name, had provided the text of the piece in full.

HuffPost is a prominent U.S. news source, but on more obscure platforms, used explicitly for search-engine optimization, over 50 other stories have popped up hyping the lawsuit’s dismissal and attempting to insulate Trump from controversy involving Sater and Bayrock. The articles were published over . . .

Continue reading. There’s more. Later in the article:

The tactics aren’t limited to websites either. A host of dummy social media accounts—including Twitter and Facebook pages bearing the names Tevfik Arif, Tevfik Arif Doyen, TevfikArif Bayrock, and Тевфик Ариф (Serbian for Tevfik Arif)—have been used since last year to plug the dismissal of the lawsuit against Sater and Bayrock.

Written by Leisureguy

5 July 2018 at 10:47 am

Omega Mixed Midget and Lenthéric with the RazoRock Old Type

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It now surprises me how much I hated shaving for decades, just from simple ignorance of how to shave. I just recently read a question on Quora from a guy who could not understand why people would drink coffee because it was so bitter. Clearly he had simply never had a cup of good coffee, which is not at all bitter. It’s like not understanding why people like, say, soup because soup is so salty.

At any rate, a totally pleasurable shave today, with the wonderful fragrance of the Lenthéric vintage shaving soap and the pure pleasure of the Old Type razor. A splash of Lenthéric Tweed EDT as an aftershave finished the job.

I am gradually moving my aftershave collection from a bookshelf in the bedroom to a cabinet in the hall, a cabinet that has a glass door. With the door closed, the aftershaves in the cabinet harbor an amazing compound of fragrances that wafts out when the door is opened.

Written by Leisureguy

5 July 2018 at 9:11 am

Posted in Shaving

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