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Amazon Prime, Hulu, and Netflix: The big three streaming services compared

Macworld - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 06:00
Which online entertainment service offers cord-cutters the best combination of original content, user interface, and bottom-line value?

'We can't wait': Maldives desperate for funds as islands risk going under

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 04:23

The tropical Maldives may lose entire islands unless it can quickly access cheap financing to fight the impact of climate change, its foreign minister said. The archipelago's former president Mohamed Nasheed famously held a cabinet meeting underwater to draw attention to submerging land and global warming a decade ago. "For small states, it is not easy," Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid told Reuters in New Delhi.


Abandoned by Allies, EU Censure Pushes Orban Toward EPP Exit

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 04:13

(Bloomberg) -- Hungary’s prime minister said he was on the verge of quitting the European Union’s biggest political group after it backed a resolution demanding that the bloc intensify efforts to rein in his perceived democratic backsliding.In a joint resolution on Hungary and Poland, the European Parliament said Thursday that EU probes into the rule of law in both countries haven’t resulted in improvements. EU lawmakers also called for additional mechanisms to reinforce the bloc’s ability to discipline rogue member states.Pointedly for Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, whose ruling Fidesz party is in the EPP, a large majority of the umbrella group supported the resolution. The EPP is considering whether to expel Fidesz over the dismantlement of checks and balances in Hungary.“We were within a centimeter of quitting the EPP,” Orban told state radio in an interview on Friday. “When our allies betray us -- and the majority of the EPP betrayed us -- we have no place there.”The EPP suspended Fidesz in March over the erosion of the rule-of-law. Orban reiterated that he may preemptively withdraw his party from the EPP, and if he does he will most likely create a new EU umbrella platform.Orban has already held talks about possible cooperation with Poland’s nationalist ruling Law & Justice Party, which is a member of a smaller group in the European Parliament.“Things can’t go on like this, that’s for sure,” Orban said, adding that the only reason he didn’t withdraw Fidesz from the EPP already was because Italian, French and Spanish members voted against the resolution. “That gives us some hope, though it’s waning.”(Updates with Orban comments in fourth and last paragraphs.)\--With assistance from Veronika Gulyas.To contact the reporter on this story: Zoltan Simon in Budapest at zsimon@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net, Andrea Dudik, Michael WinfreyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


The 1 Downside to Building Fake Islands China Didn't See Coming

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 02:48

Too much land to defend?


Pakistani court hands down 55-year sentences to 86 Islamists

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 02:27

A Pakistani court has sentenced 86 members of a radical Islamist party to 55-year prison terms each for taking part in violent rallies in 2018 over the acquittal of a Christian woman in a blasphemy case, a party official said Friday. The verdicts, unusually harsh for Pakistan, were announced late Thursday night by the court in Rawalpindi, a garrison city near Islamabad. Pir Ejaz Ashrafi, a senior leader of the radical Tehreek-e-Labbaik party, said the sentences would be appealed.


U.S., Japan May Invest in Indonesia Islands Near South China Sea

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 01:39

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S., Japan and South Korea are keen to invest in Indonesia’s Natuna Islands as President Joko Widodo steps up efforts to rebuff Chinese claims over the resource-rich waters in the South China Sea.The countries are interested in building fisheries processing and manufacturing industries in Natuna, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Pandjaitan, told reporters in Jakarta on Friday. Indonesia can manage the sea dispute with China without going into a war, Pandjaitan, a former general, said.“The U.S. investors have expressed their interest, along with investors from Japan, Korea and China,” Padjaitan said. “For us, it doesn’t matter where they come from.”Widodo’s efforts to lure foreign investment into the Natuna islands may ratchet up tension with Beijing following the intrusion of Chinese fishing vessels into an area claimed by Indonesia as an exclusive economic zone. Indonesia is not a claimant in the broader dispute over the South China Sea, but it does insist on its sovereign rights to waters around the Natunas.Beijing says while it has no territorial disputes with Jakarta, claims over maritime interests in certain waters in the South China Sea “overlap.”“War is the last resort in our negotiation process,” Pandjaitan said referring to the standoff with China on Natuna. “But under no circumstances will we negotiate our sovereignty and territorial rights.”Jokowi, as Widodo is commonly known, visited the Natuna islands last week and asserted Indonesia’s sovereignty over the waters after authorities deployed fighter jets and warships to push back the Chinese fishing vessels, which were accompanied by coast guard ships. The president also inaugurated a fisheries processing center in the region and days later invited Japan to invest in Natuna to develop the fishing industry.Indonesia is also seeking investment by Vietnamese marine processing companies. Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi met officials of Hai Nam Co., a seafood importer this week in Ho Chi Minh City, and asked it to explore a joint venture with Indonesian companies for a fisheries processing unit in areas including Natuna, according to a foreign ministry statement Thursday.It has identified a location in north Natuna for a fishing port, while southern Natuna will serve as a base for the navy, Pandjaitan said. The country will also soon acquire its first ocean-going vessel, probably from Denmark, to beef up its sea powers, he said.To contact the reporters on this story: Arys Aditya in Jakarta at aaditya5@bloomberg.net;Harry Suhartono in Jakarta at hsuhartono@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Stephanie Phang at sphang@bloomberg.net, Thomas Kutty AbrahamFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Boeing Is Way Behind Airbus in Race for China’s Next Big Order

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 01:23

(Bloomberg) -- The long-awaited trade agreement between the U.S. and China may pave the way for Boeing Co. to resume sales to the world’s second-largest aviation market, but the American giant has much catching up to do against European archrival Airbus SA.China Aviation Supplies Holding Co., which buys planes on behalf of the nation’s airlines, has been in talks with Airbus since 2019 about purchasing jets for the country’s next five-year economic plan that begins in 2021, people familiar with the matter said, asking not to be named discussing a private matter. Those talks began early last year, one of the people said. China’s top economic planner, which needs to clear negotiations of this magnitude, hasn’t even authorized the state procurement firm to begin talks with Boeing yet as trade tensions held back discussions, the person said.This means the Chicago-based aircraft maker is at least months behind Airbus in securing orders from China, which Boeing estimates will need more than 8,000 planes in the next two decades. Boeing is still reeling from the grounding of its best-selling 737 Max planes, which resulted in the company delivering fewer than half of the planes that Airbus did last year, the biggest defeat in the industry’s 45-year duopoly.Chief Executive Officer Dave Calhoun on Wednesday voiced optimism that Boeing will continue to have a valued relationship with China. A representative at the company declined to comment beyond what the new CEO said. The National Development and Reform Commission, which is China’s main economic planner, and China Aviation Supplies didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Airbus declined to comment.Things may be looking up for Boeing. Aircraft were among the $200 billion in American purchases that China pledged to make as part of a phase-one accord, though details weren’t disclosed. Also, it’s unlikely that China would shun Boeing entirely because the country has historically split its orders evenly between the two manufacturers, Airbus doesn’t have the capacity to meet all of China’s needs and such a drastic move would require thousands of pilots to be retrained.Trade tensions have hindered Boeing’s ability to capitalize on surging demand from a country that’s expected to become the world’s largest aviation market in the coming years. China will need to spend $2.9 trillion on new aircraft and ground services over the next two decades, Boeing predicted in September.The talks with Airbus are separate from an already-announced commitment from China to buy $35 billion worth of the Toulouse-based company’s jets, according to the people.In China, which led the grounding of the 737 Max, airplane purchases need to be cleared by regulators before they are handed off to China Aviation Supplies. Sales are then often recorded as coming from unidentified customers by Boeing and Airbus, and may be unveiled at various stages of the approvals process.\--With assistance from Siddharth Philip and Miao Han.To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Haze Fan in Beijing at hfan40@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Young-Sam Cho at ycho2@bloomberg.net, Will DaviesFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.


Fires, then floods: How much can a koala bear?

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 00:53

A week ago, koalas at an Australian wildlife park were in the path of raging bushfires. On Friday, they were soaking wet and being carried to safety from flash floods. Months of drought that have contributed to Australia's catastrophic bushfire season have this week given way to huge downpours in some of the blaze-ravaged areas.


Secrets Stolen: What Will China Do With Data On Israel's Iron Dome Missile Defense?

Top Stories - Fri, 01/17/2020 - 00:00

If China can break into top-secret Israeli computers, they can break into America’s—and everybody else’s, too.


Parnas said he is speaking out because he is afraid of William Barr

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 22:08

Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas said he was giving media interviews about his role in President Trump’s attempts convince Ukrainian officials to announce an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden because he wanted to protect himself from Attorney General William Barr.


Denver officials won't hand over information sought by ICE

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 22:07

Denver officials on Thursday said they would not hand over information requested by U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement on four men wanted for deportation. ICE, the Homeland Security agency tasked with arresting and deporting people in the U.S. illegally, sent four administrative subpoenas earlier this week to law enforcement looking for information on three Mexican nationals and one Honduran who had been in custody in Denver. It was the first time subpoenas had been sent to a law enforcement agency — an escalation of the conflict between the Trump administration and so-called sanctuary cities.


Why Chief Justice Roberts' role in impeachment trial is "critical"

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 22:03

Roberts' role is to be a symbol of neutrality, "to be accepted by both sides as fair."


A Delta pilot may have dumped jet fuel on schoolkids because of poor communication with air traffic control

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 21:25

FAA investigators are looking into why the Delta flight crew dumped fuel even though they told air traffic control at LAX that they wouldn't.


U.S. warship transits Taiwan Strait less than week after election

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 19:29

A U.S. warship sailed through the Taiwan Strait on Thursday, the island's defense ministry said, less than a week after Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen won re-election by a landslide on a platform of standing up to China which claims the island. The ship sailed in a northerly direction through the sensitive waterway and Taiwan's armed forces monitored it throughout, the ministry said in a brief statement on Friday, describing the sailing as an "ordinary mission". Taiwan is China's most sensitive territorial and diplomatic issue and Beijing has never ruled out the use of force to bring the island under its control.


Philippines reimposes ban on workers deploying to Kuwait

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 19:16

The Philippines said Friday it was reimposing a ban on its citizens going to work in Kuwait after a Filipina was allegedly killed by her employer, echoing a 2018 row between the two countries. President Rodrigo Duterte approved the ban as his government accused the emirate of covering up the killing of a maid, one of about 240,000 Filipinos working in the Gulf state. Duterte's government briefly banned Filipinos deploying for work in Kuwait two years ago amid a diplomatic row that began with the discovery of the remains of a murdered Filipina maid in her employers' freezer.


Lev Parnas Reveals Why He Turned on Trumpworld

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 18:59

In an interview with The Daily Beast, Lev Parnas—an ex-associate of Rudy Giuliani’s who’s at the heart of the impeachment scandal—said he’s determined to keep speaking out about his work in Trumpworld on Ukraine despite the backlash. Parnas sat with Rachel Maddow for an MSNBC interview that aired Wednesday, and then with CNN’s Anderson Cooper for one early Thursday. In his conversation with Maddow, he said President Donald Trump knew all about his efforts to pressure Kyiv to give him political favors. And he said Giuliani told Ukrainian leaders that Parnas specifically spoke on the president’s behalf. The comments drew attention from Capitol Hill, and Democratic congressional investigators have pointed to them as good reason for the Senate to call witnesses in its impeachment trial of Trump. In another portion of the interview with Maddow that aired late Thursday, Parnas likened Trump to a “cult leader” and said he was “more scared of our own Justice Department” than criminals.He went on to claim that he’d “fired” lawyers connected to Trump after getting the feeling that they “tried to keep me quiet.” Parnas told The Daily Beast that his former friends’ reaction to his arrest has strengthened his resolve to speak out. Parnas said that after he and his associate Igor Fruman were arrested at Dulles Airport on Oct. 9 and charged with campaign-finance violations, he was disappointed with Giuliani’s silence. He said Joe diGenova and Victoria Toensing—a Trump-friendly husband-and-wife legal team with deep and longstanding ties in Washington’s conservative legal world—also kept mum about their relationship with him. That silence, he said, left him feeling betrayed. “I felt like my family left me,” he said.He noted that the trio rarely shy away from defending controversial clients and allies on TV. But in his case, Parnas said, they were silent. “Knowing everything about me, knowing that this was probably a hit job, they all just clammed up,” he said. He noted that the president also disavowed knowing him, despite pictures of them together at multiple events. And he said he’d hoped to cooperate with congressional investigators as soon as they asked for his help. Toensing, diGenova, and Giuliani did not immediately respond to requests for comment.Trump said on Thursday afternoon that he does not know Parnas and does not “know what he’s about.” Earlier this week, Giuliani—who was shown to be in close contact with Parnas in text messages released by House Democrats this week—dismissed Parnas as a “proven liar,” claiming his decision to provide documents to congressional Democrats was a bid for attention. While Parnas has provided a trove of documents detailing his and Giuliani’s dealings with Ukrainian officials, he also has come under scrutiny for a past that is checkered with legal and financial troubles. The White House pointed to that past on Thursday to dismiss Parnas’ credibility. “This is a man who owns a company called Fraud Inc., so I think that’s something that people should be thinking about,” White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham told Fox News. In addition to charges of violating campaign-finance laws, Parnas has repeatedly been hit with lawsuits accusing him of failing to pay rent or live up to his end of various business deals. As recently as 2016, he was ordered by a federal judge to pay more than $500,000 to a family trust after he borrowed money for a movie that never ended up being made. It is not clear if Giuliani was aware of Parnas’ past business troubles when he teamed up with him to seek kompromat on Joe Biden in Ukraine, but Giuliani himself did consulting work for Parnas’ Fraud Guarantee firm in 2018. —Justin Baragona contributed reporting Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.


Australia raises with Iran imprisoned Australian academic

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 18:06

Australia’s foreign minister said on Friday she had raised with her Iranian counterpart the fate of an imprisoned Australian-British academic after a report that the woman had urged the Australian government to help free her. Foreign Minister Marise Payne declined to detail her conversation with Mohammad Javad Zarif about convicted academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert on the sidelines of a global leadership conference in India. Moore-Gilbert, a Melbourne University lecturer on Middle Eastern studies, has been held in the notorious Evin Prison in Tehran since September 2018.


DOJ Is Investigating Comey’s Role in Leak of Classified Document during Clinton-Email Probe

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 18:04

Department of Justice prosecutors reportedly are investigating the possibility that former FBI director James Comey leaked a classified Russian intelligence document to the media during the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails, according to a Thursday report from the New York Times.Per the Times, the investigation is centered around two 2017 articles from the Times and the Washington Post describing the Russian document, which played a key role in Comey’s unilateral decision to announce in July 2016 that the FBI would not pursue charges against Clinton for using a private email server to conduct official business during her time as secretary of state.The document, which Dutch intelligence shared with the U.S., includes an analysis of an email exchange between Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D., Fla.), who was then chairing the Democratic National Committee, and Leonard Bernardo, an official with the Soros-backed non-profit Open Society Foundations. Wasserman Schultz assures Bernardo in the email that then–attorney general Loretta Lynch would make sure Clinton wasn't charged in the email probe.Both Bernardo and Wasserman Schultz have denied ever having the exchange, and the FBI’s assessment claimed that the document was a fake and part of a Russian disinformation campaign.Department of Justice inspector general Michael Horowitz said in a review of Comey’s actions over the Clinton probe — and its subsequent reopening in October 2016 — that the former FBI director had a “troubling lack of any direct, substantive communication” with Lynch over his decisions.Both 2017 articles cite Comey’s private concern that if Lynch had announced no charges for Clinton, the Russians could have released the document to cast doubt on whether the investigation was ethical. They also cite Comey’s decision not to tell Lynch that he was declining to charge Clinton as a way of protecting the FBI’s political independence.Investigators are examining whether Comey’s personal lawyer, Daniel Richman, gave the Russian document to reporters. Richman played a key role in a different, confirmed leak that Comey orchestrated to hand over memos of his private encounters with President Trump in the early days of the Trump administration.“I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter,” Comey testified to Congress in June 2017. “I thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.”In August, Horowitz found that Comey violated policy and set a “dangerous example” for the rank-and-file by retaining and leaking the memos. Horowitz referred Comey for potential prosecution over the matter, but the DOJ declined to prosecute.Comey has long taken criticism for his handling of the Clinton investigation from Republicans and President Trump, who suggested in December that Comey could get jail time.> So now Comey’s admitting he was wrong. Wow, but he’s only doing so because he got caught red handed. He was actually caught a long time ago. So what are the consequences for his unlawful conduct. Could it be years in jail? Where are the apologies to me and others, Jim?> > -- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 15, 2019


Woman who poisoned husband with eyedrops sentenced to 25 years in prison

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 17:41

A woman accused of poisoning her husband to death with eye drops then burning his will has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.South Carolina woman Lana Clayton pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter more than a year after she had spiked her husband's water with Visine until he collapsed inside the couple's multi-million-dollar home on 21 July 2018.


Navy removes commander of San Diego-based destroyer Decatur

Top Stories - Thu, 01/16/2020 - 17:27

The commanding officer of the San Diego-based destroyer Decatur has been removed from command, the Navy announced Thursday. Cmdr. John “Bob” Bowen was relieved of his duties due to a “loss of confidence in his ability to command,” according to a Navy statement obtained by the San Diego Union-Tribune. Navy Capt. Dan Cobain, the commander of Destroyer Squadron 21, ordered the move, the statement said.


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