Prices for Rhodium are climbing near 2008 all time highs (archived, archived). The brittle platinum group metal is primarily produced by South African and Russian operations while most trades typically involve producer to industrial user transactions without much of the "paper" market that flattens gold prices. This may be an early indicator that markets aren't inclined to value dollars like they used to. It could also suggest deep Afropessimism is setting in among Asian traders that may be stockpiling the material amid doubts South Africa can continue producing.
Reports continue to pour in documenting many cases where US mobile networks are increasingly controlled by folks other than those that happen to have their names printed on the papers (archived). Employees seem to be happy to take outside money and instructions while sheer organizational bulk makes resolving "Whose line is it anyway?" a very difficult question to answer.
Adolfo Martinez of Ames, Iowa has been sentenced to 16 years of imprisonment by a Story County court after he removed a rainbow "Pride" flag from the Ames United Church of Christ on sixth street and burned the flag in from of a "Gentleman's club" on fifth street (archived). On the so-called Court's way to sentencing the 30 year old Martinez to incarceration through his 46th year of age, the court assigned him convictions for allegedly committing Arson and Hate Crime for his burning of a piece of cloth that someone happened to assign great political importance.
On their own none of the charges against Martinez carry a maximum possible sentence over five years, but the Court elected to impose sentences over the maximum through the "habitual offender" device.
North Korea launched a satellite into space earlier this week, this is a traditional step for nuclear armed states demonstrating their capacity to wield intercontinental missiles (archived). Korean leader Kim Jong Un has removed denuclearization of Korea as a possible outcome for negotiations between Korea and the US. Meanwhile the breakaway government in South Korea has produced and broadcast a propaganda reel showing hypothetical F-35s delivering a hypothetical victory against Kim's Korean government.
NGINX developer Igor Sysoev's former employer Rambler Group has entered a claim to ownership over the software's codebase leading to a police raid on NGINX's Moscow offices (archived). NGINX was initially released in 2004, and Sysoev started a commercial venture around the code when he left Rambler Group in 2011. When San Francisco based F5 networks spent 670 million USD to acquire Sysoev's firm earlier this year, it seemed to raise issues with Rambler's management as to what exactly Sysoev had been doing while on their payroll.
AFL-CIO boss and de facto leader of the US labor movement Richard Trumpka announced this week that the organization would be endorsing the trade agreement US President Donal Trump has pushed as a replacement for NAFTA (archived). As Pantsuitist opposition candidates challenging Trump continue to wank over intersectionality and other matters of concern only to ever smaller interest groups, the local labor movement's pivot towards Trump and MAGA suggests the leadership is catching up to their critically endangered blue collar membership's preferences.
The criminal organization calling itself the Greek Government is mandating that 30% of all income be spent through electronic methods with Greeks that refuse to do so being fined 22% of their shortfall (archived). The government is nominally pursuing this draconian measure impair the actual Greek economy that the Government criminals have been shut out of while at the same time trying to force activity to pick up in the much smaller portion of the economy that the Government has captured. Can you see the tyrants unmasking themselves yet? Sorry for your loss.
The United Queendom has let a UN deadline to surrender control of the Chagos Islands to Mauritius pass after the UN International Court of Justice ruled Lizzy's continued occupation of the islands illegal. The UN General Assembly approved the dealine to vacate with a 116 to 6 vote (archived). Mauritius was compelled to trade the islands for their independence back in 1965, the 13th year Liz wore the crown.
Lizzie began renting out the largest island in the group, Diego Garcia, for USG use as an unsinkable aircraft carrier in the Indian Ocean a mere 3 years later. Construction on the island to carrier conversion was delayed 4 years in order for depopulation efforts to rid the island of its previous inhabitants.
Old Lizzie has decided to suspend Price Andrew's public duties following the Duke of York's poor optics in reponding to questions about his friendship with the late Jeffery Epstein (archived). The Duke's public fumblings occurred after he agreed to an interview by British state Broadcaster BBC without first getting permission from Liz.
Meanwhile two guards at the prison where Jeffery Epstein's life ended have been charged with conspiracy and forging records for carrying out their jobs with all the intensity that can be expected out of government charges sitting in undemanding sinecures. Albeit these particular sinecures happen to exist in an environment labeled "high security" per USG in universe conventions (archived).