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  #121  
Old 24.02.2015, 21:51
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg!

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That user fees do not (or not any longer) go into Treasury's General Fund surprised me, but here's the relevant statement:

"The CBSP uses revenue from consular fees and surcharges to fund consular programs and activities, consistent with applicable statutory authorities. These fees include Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fees, Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative surcharges, a Passport Security surcharge, Immigrant Visa Security surcharge, and H-1B and L Fraud Prevention and Detection fees. Beginning in FY 2016, all of the Diversity Visa Lottery Fee and the Affidavit of Support Fee are presented as part of the CBSP. In FY 2015 and prior years, the CBSP fees were credited to the Diplomatic and Consular Programs (D&CP) account, the Department’s main operating account, as spending authority from offsetting collections. In addition, consular programs up until FY 2014 were funded by a combination of fee revenue and appropriations funding, which supported the need to execute these programs out of the D&CP account. Now that the consular programs are fully fee-funded, the FY 2016 President’s Budget creates a new standalone account in which to deposit the fee and surcharge revenue. The new account structure will allow for greater financial reporting and operational transparency of consular and border security programs and activities. The FY 2016 President’s Budget proposes to transition these fees and their associated spending to a new Treasury account outside of the Diplomatic and Consular Programs appropriation."

http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/236395.pdf

Nothing about fitness equipment.
"Nothing about fitness equipment"
Well there wouldn`t be. There was nothing about rocket launchers (fitness equipment) for Afganistan in the 1980s or "help" for Nicaragua or Chile either.
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  #122  
Old 25.02.2015, 00:45
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg!

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You're from Yorkshire, aren't you?
Reminds me of my old idea to Reform the UK
- the House of Lords is replaced by the House of Counties
- all counties send TWO persons per County into the House of Counties
- each county has its own parliament
- each county elects its own government
- the County Prime Ministers assemble six times per year in the Roundtable of County Prime Ministers (RCPM)
- income taxes go to the County and only a small slice to the UK
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  #123  
Old 25.02.2015, 00:49
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg!

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Reminds me of my old idea to Reform the UK
- the House of Lords is replaced by the House of Counties
- all counties send TWO persons per County into the House of Counties
- each county has its own parliament
- each county elects its own government
- the County Prime Ministers assemble six times per year in the Roundtable of County Prime Ministers (RCPM)
- income taxes go to the County and only a small slice to the UK
... and the country is renamed Swengtzerland.
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  #124  
Old 25.02.2015, 01:18
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

Will North, South, East and West Yorkshire each get two representatives, or will it be four quarter counties?
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  #125  
Old 25.02.2015, 02:51
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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Will North, South, East and West Yorkshire each get two representatives, or will it be four quarter counties?

There will be public votes about the topic
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  #126  
Old 25.02.2015, 03:32
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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Will North, South, East and West Yorkshire each get two representatives, or will it be four quarter counties?
They will be known as Viertelkounties, with one representative each.
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  #127  
Old 20.03.2015, 10:11
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

Amb. Suzi should pay attention to what is happening to another fundraiser US Ambassador, Bruce Heyman. According to The Globe and Mail, the US Ambassador to Canada has been frozen out by the Canadian government:

"there is a new edge to Canada-U.S. relations, and Mr. Heyman’s experience is a symbol of it. Over recent months, The Globe and Mail has spoken with dozens of political players, officials from both sides of the border, and current and former diplomats, to paint a picture of Mr. Heyman’s troubled tenure in Canada. Several close to events asked not to be named because of diplomatic sensitivity. Mr. Heyman declined to be interviewed.There are at least two sides to the story. People who spoke to The Globe largely agreed on the facts, if not their interpretation. Either Mr. Heyman quickly gave offence, or his hosts were quick to take it – or both. But it’s clear that Mr. Heyman – who had come from the high-powered, “Masters of the Universe” world of investment banking giant Goldman Sachs and brought an assertive, goal-oriented style – wasn’t prepared for how easily he’d set off tripwires with a government that wasn’t feeling much goodwill."

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...ticle23514669/

For background on how Obama's bumbling amateur diplomat first got into trouble, see this WSJ article from last summer: "The U.S. Tells Ottawa: O Canada, Stop Pouting - An ex-Goldman Sachs bundler for Obama is starting to look like a diplomatic bungler".

The good news is that he wasn't sent to Switzerland!
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  #128  
Old 05.04.2015, 22:36
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

Another one of Obama's bundler ambassadors has stuck his foot in his mouth, after only six months on the job. US Amb. Andrew Schapiro to the Czech Republic criticized the Czech President's plan to visit Moscow. This is today's Sputnik news story:

US Ambassador to Czech Republic Frozen Out for Undiplomatic Advice

© AP Photo/ Petr David Josek

16:06 05.04.2015(updated 19:26 05.04.2015) Get short URL
3766812

Doors of the Czech presidential residence are now closed to US Ambassador in Prague after he advised Czech leader Milos Zeman against attending a Victory Day parade in Moscow.

"PRAGUE (Sputnik) The doors of the Czech presidential residence are now closed to US Ambassador in Prague, Andrew Schapiro, after the former Chicago lawyer unduly advised Czech leader Milos Zeman against attending a Victory Day parade in Moscow. "The American ambassador has closed the doors of the [presidential residence]," President Zeman said in an interview with the local magazine, Parlamentni Listy.
This came after Schapiro, a former fundraiser for US President Barack Obama, told Czech television in late March that Zeman's planned visit to Russia amid the ongoing Ukrainian crisis would not send "a good message."
Zeman lashed out at the US representative, who took up office six months ago, saying he could not imagine a Czech ambassador in Washington giving advice to the US leader on his foreign travels.
Moscow earlier sent out invitations for world leaders to attend the Victory Day parade in Moscow marking the 70th anniversary of the Nazi Germany's defeat and the end of World War II." "

http://sputniknews.com/politics/2015...020500632.html

He may be a bigger bungler than our own Amb. Suzi.
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  #129  
Old 06.04.2015, 09:23
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

It would seem to be the Czech President's right to attend the Victory Day parade in Moscow in honor of the 144,000 Russian and Soviet troops who died liberating Czechoslovakia in World War II.

Spiegel also is reporting the diplomatic flap: "Diplomatic Incident: Czech Republic bans US Ambassador from Prague Burg":

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/auslan...a-1027171.html

The US Ambassador to the Czech Republic attended Harvard law school with Obama. He also successfully defended Philip Morris, the tobacco giant, against punitive damages. Those, in addition to being a fundraiser, are his apparent qualifications to be US Ambassador:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...724-story.html

http://www.allgov.com/news/appointme...01?news=853288

Czechs are a proud people. The next step should be to declare the US Ambassador to the Czech Republic a persona non grata and send him back to the US.
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  #130  
Old 06.04.2015, 10:46
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

Interestingly, the BBC carries a similar report. It's at:
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-32189757

It goes on to add:
"Presidential spokesman Jiri Ovcacek later sought to downplay Mr Zeman's [Czech President] comments, saying that Mr Schapiro [US Envoy to Czech Republic] could still take part in social events at the Castle."

The irony is beautiful to see and was surely unintended. The "downplaying", as the BBC chose to interpret it, is actually a strong confirmation that the envoy is no longer welcome in his official function, unless, that is, his official function is attending social events.
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  #131  
Old 06.04.2015, 10:47
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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Not content with destroying the Swiss financial center and turning Americans in Switzerland into second-class citizens, Amb. Suzi has lashed out at skiing and winter sports in Switzerland on her Facebook page. Scrapping any sense of diplomacy, she called Swiss ski lift conditions inefficient and chaotic.
If Amb. Suzi thinks that European skiers aren't polite in a lift line, she didn't run into this American in Verbier:

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  #132  
Old 06.04.2015, 11:02
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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If Amb. Suzi thinks that European skiers aren't polite in a lift line, she didn't run into this American in Verbier:

Now, there is a true ambassador, able to accurately and articulately represent American values and culture to the heart of [geographical] Europe.
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  #133  
Old 06.04.2015, 12:12
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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It would seem to be the Czech President's right to attend the Victory Day parade in Moscow in honor of the 144,000 Russian and Soviet troops who died liberating Czechoslovakia in World War II.

Spiegel also is reporting the diplomatic flap: "Diplomatic Incident: Czech Republic bans US Ambassador from Prague Burg":

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/auslan...a-1027171.html

The US Ambassador to the Czech Republic attended Harvard law school with Obama. He also successfully defended Philip Morris, the tobacco giant, against punitive damages. Those, in addition to being a fundraiser, are his apparent qualifications to be US Ambassador:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...724-story.html

http://www.allgov.com/news/appointme...01?news=853288

Czechs are a proud people. The next step should be to declare the US Ambassador to the Czech Republic a persona non grata and send him back to the US.
About "in honor of the 144,000 Russian and Soviet troops who died liberating Czechoslovakia in World War II. "

Liberating??
I thought they are celebrating the illegal invasion of Czechoslovakia "21 August 1968, by about 750,000 Warsaw Pact troops, mostly from the Soviet Union, Poland, Bulgaria and Hungary, with tanks and machine guns occupied Czechoslovakia, deported thousands of people"
Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia only ended in 1991!

It is claimed "Over the whole time of this Soviet occupation more than 700,000 people escaped"

The Czech president should be ashamed to attend this ceremony.
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  #134  
Old 06.04.2015, 12:24
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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Liberating??
Obviously he considers that an 'occupation' by the USSR was a more pleasant option than being occupied by Nazi Germany.

Last edited by me.anon; 06.04.2015 at 12:32. Reason: typo
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  #135  
Old 06.04.2015, 12:51
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

The "Prague Post" writes:

"(Czech President) Zeman said previously his trip to Russia would be a “sign of gratitude for not having to speak German in this country.”

He said he was going to Russia to express his respect to the 150,000 soldiers who died when liberating Czechoslovakia."

http://www.praguepost.com/czech-news...losed-the-door
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  #136  
Old 06.04.2015, 13:07
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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The Czech president should be ashamed to attend this ceremony.
And, while we are at it, Merkel's decision NOT to attend may be interpreted as resentment at the Soviet contribution to the termination of the NAZI project. And Poland, being host to Auschwitz etc., would surely want to send a representative, to express gratitude for the liberation, or would they?
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  #137  
Old 06.04.2015, 13:29
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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And, while we are at it, Merkel's decision NOT to attend may be interpreted as resentment at the Soviet contribution to the termination of the NAZI project. And Poland, being host to Auschwitz etc., would surely want to send a representative, to express gratitude for the liberation, or would they?
There was a similar ceremony recently in Auschwitz, Poland. Putin wasn't invited and didn't attend. IIRC the russian president used to be informally informed and attended, but this year that wasn't enough - Putin didn't come because he hadn't been formally (officially) invited. At least that's how I remember it being presented in the news here.

With this kind of prologue, and with EU being the imposer of ongoing sanctions, it would look odd if Merkel attended.
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  #138  
Old 06.04.2015, 13:35
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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The "Prague Post" writes:

"(Czech President) Zeman said previously his trip to Russia would be a “sign of gratitude for not having to speak German in this country.”

He said he was going to Russia to express his respect to the 150,000 soldiers who died when liberating Czechoslovakia."

http://www.praguepost.com/czech-news...losed-the-door
Of course Czechoslovakia was part of the Austro-Hungarian empire where the official language was German (plus some local additions) until the defeat of the empire in 1918. So at the time the Nazis arrived most Czechs could speak German anyway.

Did the President comment about his gratitude at having to learn Russian?
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  #139  
Old 06.04.2015, 13:41
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

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And, while we are at it, Merkel's decision NOT to attend may be interpreted as resentment at the Soviet contribution to the termination of the NAZI project. And Poland, being host to Auschwitz etc., would surely want to send a representative, to express gratitude for the liberation, or would they?
About "may be interpreted as resentment at the Soviet contribution to the termination of the NAZI project."
Not really, what an extraordinary statement!

Merkel comes from East Germany so had the many benefits of the Russian occupation including compulsory learning of the Russian language.
Which language knowledge is one reason why she can communicate well to Putin.
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  #140  
Old 06.04.2015, 15:11
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Re: Amb. Suzi lays an egg! [Ambassador criticises ski lifts in CH]

Vincent Kucholl almost pulls off a California accent...

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If Amb. Suzi thinks that European skiers aren't polite in a lift line, she didn't run into this American in Verbier:

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