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Hello Reddit, I think my end will become to me soon (ó﹏ò。). Reddit is my last hope. I'm broken and I don't think that I gonna live if nothing is gonna change. I'm hopeless, my life is meaningless no one even gonna care about my death, even my parents! I can't live here anymore.

Hello my name is Sofia I'm 16 years old and I'm from Russia and I have 2 years to survive before my end.
A while ago I made one post in subreddit about immigration, but everything I got is a lot of downvotes and mainly got ignored. Like I got ignored by everything my whole life.
First of all, I gonna say why I have a time limit, there a lot of reasons for that. I don't sure what I should begin, but in short my current status:
So this is a small portion of everything that happened to me. I going to tell you some stories and going to open some of these themes that I listed above. I'll begin with my parents.
When I was 10 years old or less my dad always lost all money in casino on a slot machine. He worked as a guard in the same casino where he lost all money. Once he almost gave away our apartment like that.
Now we running out of money because of coronavirus. He was working at the hotel as a guard. The hotel went bankrupt and we didn't receive payment for 3 months. And he was working not legal there so we were totally dead.
Basically, we trying to survive (4 people) on around $544/month but as I said he loves to lose money so it's looking more like $408/month for 4 people but mainly even less. We need to use them to pay for two apartments that look like very bad, having two bad looking apartments in a bad city doesn't mean we rich. And also we need to pay for an extra apartment where we all live. Sometimes we are being sued for not paying at the right time.
Also, there was a stupid situation so we almost got homeless. My dad's father had our apartment, and so he cheated on my grandmother, who was not even close to me, I never saw her until I was 14 years old and eventually, a child was born, later my dad's father died and their family claimed inheritance, including our apartment, they were also rich and this angered me the most, like why they need our apartment in with we live, but also my mom telling about these problems to me. I was around 10.
The baby is one year old. His Parents: WE NEEAD AN APARTAMENT FOR HIM Because HE iS a bik Boi
We don't even have wallpapers before. Just empty walls actually that place still don't have wallpapers everywhere. Mainly, this was because my dad is lazy he doesn't do anything, he was doing only: Farting on the couch, playing video games on smartphone, annoys everyone, etc. Every hard work was done by my mother and with some of our help (kids)
My dad. He doesn't give a fuck about us. And he always will. He living only for himself and only for himself.
The due first month of quarantine in Russia I was eating only one time per day.
When we had no money, father was god knows where, we can't even live in our house at this moment we lived in grandma house and grandma can't even give money or support us somehow, so mainly we were hungry,
So I hate my dad, but not my mom, she just trying to save us from our dad.
My mom trying to control my life, watching my every step, it continues to my 14 years old, then and for today she just annoys me with asking what I was doing today or who do I write to, etc.
Also, my mom sometimes trying to make suicide, and it's so hard to stop her, she just going to our medkit and start eating every drug. It's terrible.
My mom and my brother love to make fun of me. Trying to annoy me and made me cry. Telling jokes about me, and if I don't act like I don't care, they gonna make fun of me even more.
My mother almost every time very sick. She just sneezed and broken spine or something, she felt so bad, so she crying of pain I asked her for calling to a hospital, but she declines. Every time she looks like she gonna die right now she doesn't want to call for help to the hospital.
Yesterday (6th August) my mom almost set the whole house on fire, by putting a wooden circle on a gas stove and then a big bowl of bad soup, and then after a while, it ignited, and a great column of fire rose and a lot of smoke came out.
My dad drunk at least one time per week. He often loses his items such a phone because he literally can sleep under the fence of some house. He destroyed a lot of things in our house. The fridge still has traces of his punches. Rarely, but he can punch me. He doesn't love me at all, he loves only his second son.
Endless scandals. I don't even know what to say about it. I can't protect anyone anymore when dad is angry.
And things that always with me. Whatever someone does something bad, they told me that it was I. In a time of school it makes me wanna die because the whole class told the teacher that I PUNCH myself, poor bullies, how dare me!
While I was in my classroom due to math lessons, there was break time and I sat in my class since I don't have friends and reasons to go out. And then my classmate ran in class with words that I stole sled of some little kid, then class appears and say that's it's true and we saw you, then the school principal and homeroom teacher appeared and they saying that they got me and me in big trouble but God was on my side in this day and teacher start to debate with them how I can steal something while I'm in school sitting in this classroom! Thankfully she able to approve that they wrong. Actually, this is the first time and last time that someone saved me from hell. But all school already thinks that I stole a sled of little kid.
Also, they love to stalk me to my home and scream that I'm "gay" and "pussy" and other words. When I go downstairs they very often trip me up and then I fall very badly. They also love to hide my clothes so I stay in school for many hours to find my cloth.
I was in school bullies start to say that I miserable, doesn't deserve a feature and many things, but when I can't take it anymore and say something in their side they start to kick me with a crowd, I was laying down, and 4 people just keep kicking me, whole class watch this everyone was happy they said punch harder, kick harder! I think it just like forever.
But at some point it's ended, I can't feel anything, I don't even stand up, I just cried. Then the teacher walks in class and saw me. I think she was thinking "oh no he* is crying again!". Then she said stand up and said go with me, I thought she will finally help me, but I was so wrong. She went with me to high school (I never was in there at this moment), to the headmaster of this school. I sat in her cabinet and she starts to scream at me that everyone got tired of you and you should die we will kick you from school because of your behaviors. I just crying and can't even listen to all the things that she said, I thought I just disappointed my mom. After 1 hour and more of scream at me she said stand up, we gotta go, I asked what do you mean? but don't get a response back. We walked outside with a fire exit door, there was a black tuned car and it has a lot of people inside. At this time I thought I'll die and I start to say sorry for everyone, but mainly for my mother. I thought we gonna ride in the forest because I never saw these places before, the whole road I just praying. No one is speaking. Finally, I saw my house, and parked at the entrance to the entrance (It looks like English doesn't have this word), she said to go out but gives me some document. I slowly walked upstairs, every step I felt worse and worse, and finally, when I was on the 5th floor I ring to door, my mom opened the door I gave her this document and when she asked me "What happened?" I started to cry again and fall on my bed. The document contains something about my expulsion from school. It was my worst day. You can say me, why you can't change school but in a place where I live before, there was only one school.
Is I'm a bad person? I'm always tried to help people and animals if I can.
I stop at least three people and my mother of suicide in real life.. don't sure if this counts...
I destroyed a lot of "columbine" community everywhere I can and trying to help people, change their minds. So I stop many people of suicide and killing everyone in schools.
There was a thing as 'The Groups of Death' most popular was "Blue whale". It was a game in real life where you do some tasks, but then it quickly flows into tasks like "cut your wrist" and so on. The ending of this game is to kill yourself, doesn't matter with way, but mainly it's just jumping from a rooftop. I was horrified about this, so I had an idea to create an anti-group of death called "Pink Flamingo". Everything was fine, I helped a lot of people, make therapy for them, give advice, and at the end of the game you should be alright and happy, there was no real end. But in one day my group was banned from Vkontakte as I remember for this reason: I created a group of death. Bravo, they even block my own page almost permanent, it was hard to restore it, it was a special ban.
I really remember that I made a lot of happy birthday congratulations on things in windows movie maker to everyone... I was 8 years old or less... I always helped grandmothers, carrying their products, or moving them across the road.
Some bullies wanted to kick poor cat to death, I don't let them do that, so they kicked me... BUT hey! I saved a cat!
When I had internet "friends" we had a community, I called it "TeaTown community", we were like a big family, I helped to everyone there, they need something I give it to them and a lot of other things, yes they kinda don't like me because I always want to help everyone and it annoys them. And in one day we built a big city with a 10+ player population and I started this community brick by brick with a new friend (everyone knew them even before I appear there) and in one day after a month of friendship he just asks me to add his friend to private since I don't know him and I was scared of security and for everyone, I said no! They start to scream on me and call me a pussy and such and I add him under this pressure and then they immediately kill me and destroyed my house and storehouse of the city I was broken they even used cheats so I can't fight with them. But it's not all, they told something to all of my friends, and everyone started to hate me and they start to don't trust me. I managed to get a little bit of their trust and I became a part of this community again. I build a church and live in there. I still helped to everyone. But in one day someone busted me, he gives access to church to those two who grief me before and then they destroyed my church, no items survived. I actually have a few footages where they were cheating and griefing. Actually, I showed it to admins. And guess what? I got permanently banned. They bought the admins. The main conflict is very stupid, to solve it I need to apologize for not letting them grief me and don't add them immediately to private. Also one of them always saying something I'm a god and you're nothing.
When I finally realized that I'm transgender, I made a coming out and every friend that I have, even my best friend start to hate me even gay one and it made me feel very bad. A was lone for a month and since I can't find new friends I tried to go back to them. They made a lot of transphobic things like burning the trans flag, mis-pronouns me and everything, but in one day they reach something above of normal, when I died I teleported in a strange place, they made a test lab that I need to pass, they gave me adventure mode, some of them was in spectator mode, my "best friend" was behind glass, they said hello and then look in the chest I saw a pufferfish that named "Trans have no right" they say eat it. I eat it, don't sure why. The next thing was a potion, that I need to drink to be female, but unfortunately, It doesn't work and I got aids, then they give me a wooden pickaxe and said to dig obsidian... 4 blocks of obsidian with a wooden pickaxe, sick bastards! Then there was another room with insane hard parkour. After a while, I passed it and I got into another room where I should choose one of three answers, in fact, some of them were not transphobic like there was a question about Kazahstan with dates. At the end of the quiz, they hide the right answer behind me, so it should make me confused, once it solved I went to the final room. I saw to "dicks" and my best friend said choice dick, sit and die, there was a big black one with racism on a sign that gonna destroy all my organs because it's a big and sticky white one with gonna pull out my guts and made me die. I don't remember what I chose, but it was horrible we was a friend for many years and then they do this? How sad, even my "best friend"
Since that, I don't really have friends anymore.
All my classmates around me in school used drugs and they were very bad and none of them want to be my friend. This why I never had a friend in real life. Everyone in real life was very bad, many of them were in police stations already. Even girls were bad, they drunk too much and engaged in prostitution.
All the people I knew had a boyfriend/girlfriend/whatever at some point, but I never had, so they very shooked when they knew this fact, but I don't think I need that, I don't think I need something, maybe I just don't deserve life. In fact, I don't even sure with sexual orientation is I or do I even want to have someone.
I hate to remember the place where I lived before because of school, memories, and thing like:
I just going to home from school and then from nowhere on a large speed a big van is riding on the sidewalk not even giving any sign. I jumped out at the last moment. It still gives me nightmares.
Or like when someone kicked me in school when I was going downstairs and then when I was going home someone walking far away and scream that I'm "faggot" and other words but then I saw two small dogs. Nothing special, but then huge dogs start to appear from nowhere and I start thinking about going back and find another way to go home, but when I turn my head I realized I already surrounded by huge evil dogs that barked and growled at me and then ran sharply at me. A big crowd of dogs surrounded me and chased me all over the city and I was running for my life, most of these dogs were huge, and I ran from almost 20 dogs. Honestly, I don't know why they can't catch me and where most of them gone when I was pretty close to my home, but it's doesn't matter. Yes and I cried and scream the whole road to home.
Just a typical day of my life. Mainly when I home I'll be saved. But every time I outside. Something bad is going to happen.
Also, teachers called me rude words and lower my grades. Imagine being a kid and the teacher call you a bag of shit that can't do anything.
I was in this place a week ago and I was praying to my mother to not go there, but she starts to say I never coming outside and I should ride or else I can say bye to my laptop. We stuck there for three days we just should be there for one day. We don't even have pillows or blankets. And I meet old school bullies that start to make fun of me one of them even punches me. He called me "faggot" again like in past. It was a nightmare. Everyone hates me there. My little brother hates me because I want to leave this nightmare as fast as I can, but he wants to be there for a longer time. I actually made a wrong thing later.
I wanted to escape and my reason for that was If stay there even more I will kill myself because so many horrifying memories' was there. I just walked to a train station, so basically I escaped from a mom and my little brother. And a bully from school walked to me, I didn't saw him and he said "Fuck you" and then he punches me in a face. Well then since I have no money with me right now (and always), so I have a "perfect" Idea to walk to my city on foot (48KM to the final station and also a long way to the city), but I just walked just one station is about 4km from there and I got already tired, but also at this moment I realize that I don't have keys for the apartment and also I need to go another 10+ stations + another more things I don't think of, so I went back.
The second reason I do so is that my mom and my brother start to make jokes about me and I just can't stand it.
I returned to a nightmare place and we got stuck here. I still feel very bad.
Actually, this isn't a serious escape because in one-day whole class the whole day made fun of me by calling me with bad words, they tripped me, they spat paper at me, and do much more. And the teacher remarked not to them but ME. I wonder why??? Then everything like in a fog. It was the end of the lesson and someone made my cry, I run out of class and saw fire exit, with tears, I very fast open this door and ran out of school, they tried to stop me, they even grab my backpack, but I ran away. So next I was thinking about getting drown or just die in the forest, maybe even of starving to death, but temporarily I hide somewhere and lay down there. It was a very cold autumn. I don't even wear a jacket and I was alone, thinking about suicide and the end of me, I was laying on trash, I even thought about live like a hobo, Because I can't live like that anymore. My mom can't do anything to help me she can't do it to end. So bullies can't get punished because of that. I always was in bruises. Even more, bullies have come up with an offensive nickname for me because of which I want to change my last name. The worst part that this thing also works in English and almost in every country, because this word sounds almost the same even though it writes very differently.
My poor relatives made me feel very sad and bad, but not every one of them. Looking at an old, lonely grandfather it's so heartbreaking, it's so awful to see a poor uncle stricken with a stroke and other can laugh on the situation, it's so wrong... also recently grandfather killed a cat... he put it somewhere and close it... he doesn't even feed it... a week passed... and then he opened a place where he put cat... but it's already almost died... on next day cat just died.....
Well, I don't do anything bad. I always tried to help people. But everything I received from them it just hates and other sad things. Nothing good. Yes, I made bad stuff and I apologize for that. I apologize that I was born. Wow, it hurt so much. I upset my parents. And I will upset them even more.
Teachers say there is no way I saying the truth because I can't always be "White and fluffy". I mean no one even trusts me for some reason. My friends busted me.
I always, every day, for many years keep talking to my parents that I'm going to make suicide, but they say that I don't saw a real-life, I don't live enough, and what kind of troubles you can even have in this age?
My family and other people keep told that my life is not the worst and I can agree. They can say the other one lives is worse than me, you at least have food, water, and a roof overhead, people from Africa are very poor, do you think about them? Yes, often think about poor people and that they need more help than me in fact I'm living very well in their background.
When I was a child I was thinking about writing a book about my life and write it when I will grow up, but now I don't find this idea very good. In fact, it's very stupid. I always feel stupid. Everyone thinks I'm stupid, retarded, or something. And I can kinda agree with them.
And I can't help myself because something will stop me and made feel me even worse and no one can help me. Every time I want to make animation, website, or whatever my programs got crashed, light turn off for the whole house, I lost internet connection, I got lost files or even worse corrupted because it most painful and any possible way to stop me from working that you can imagine.
I know odd people that sometimes can come from nowhere and write something odd. Something about eggs, something about fursuits while why do I in the world even want to know the cost of this? I don't hear you for months and you come back and say interesting how much fursuit is a cost or even "docking", various sort of things. There were only people that I talked with for like 5 months. I feel so terrible. For some things, I feel like I was raped and I don't even kidding.
First of all, I gonna say why I have a time limit, there a lot of reasons for that. I don't sure about what I should begin, but the current status that I'm suffering from Bullies, of my Family, of my Government, and what is going on in my country.
I tried to find transgender friends in Russia, but then I realized that it's an almost impossible challenge since most of them not just dressing and do other staff. Even when I saw an infinite number of almost always gross people I find the right thing, but even there I find bad people. One of them was younger than me he was 15 years old and then after a long conversation he said that he gives jobs to his boyfriend and do such things and send me some images, I try to change his mind, but he doesn't want to listen to me, he just enjoy that. And other transgenders I found were good people, but they weren't sure if they were transgender, but it still better than nothing. They never called me a friend in fact when I asked, they answer that we, not friends. And it broke my heart... I realized that I never had friends.
I scared to start to speak with anyone. When I don't speak everything usually better. So I can't say even a single word.
Almost every night I have a nightmare about someone is trying to catch me and I trying to escape. It could be everything and mainly I ran in deserted places even if there should be a lot of people in them. The alternative ending is the screamer version so I can't even run for a while before screamer, I instantly got caught. Also there another type of dream where I walking on familiar but very changed places, most scary that before it had many people, but since every dream there less and fewer people, and everything got weirder and weirder, so everything change, even more, some building is destroying random big holes that always in random place start appear, world start to less looking to real and more have strange odd colors. I walking alone in an odd and scary world and getting die every time. The third type of dream is when I can't help someone, someone died and everything, recently I have only this type of dream.
I need to notice that I'm MtF transgender. I notice it that late because I still scared. I want to escape from this endless nightmare, start a new life from a blank page, and finally be myself. But looking at others' lives gives me a thing. I can't complain about this. A lot of people living even worse than me.
I never talk to a psychotherapist because I was always scared to know to door or just make an appointment. But it has almost no sense, I'll just break my life forever by visiting a psychotherapist because there's almost no way to apply for a job because no one gonna takes a person who visited a psychotherapist. And most of them transphobes, so they gonna hurt me. The other one can't help me since the government looking for rights from transgenders.
I stuck in a circle of self-harm and writing a suicide note. I don't even strong enough to write this post, it was a nightmare for me. And I need to escape this country as fast as I can, because I can't take it any longer, people like me gonna die there.
I say almost nothing about I got bullied on the internet every day or how my government is worst in the world, I tired and you should know that I don't fully talk even about parents, friendship themes.
I feel like a bug without limbs that can't move and do something. Everyone else can draw, programming, make music, and basically anything else. I can't do anything everything that I made is just awful. My poems, lyrics for songs, my site...
I hate the way I look. I can't look in the mirror. I think I'm fat, I hate my voice, I hate how tall I am, I hate my haircut, I hate that I can't control my life, My face and whole body, The way I talk, The way I write. I want to have HRT and control my life so much.
I can't stand for myself and no one can. I can't help myself and no one can.
Everything I can do is repeatedly dying every day. And trying to not kill me. I didn't do anything to deserve all of this. I didn't do anything wrong.
I forgot to notice that my mom is a transphobe. She said that these people should be in a mental hospital, or better on an island where no one can see them, or even better burn them all!...
I need your help I ask you to find a way to help me! I can't live here anymore, I need to get out.
I don't know what I should do...
Please, help me survive...
submitted by lolzzz992 to depressed [link] [comments]

What Wisconsin Democrats Learned from 2016

It was a most unusual sight for Joe Biden’s campaign: a crowd. Across the street from the Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry, in the town of Manitowoc, several hundred fans of the former Vice-President gathered in the afternoon sunshine late last month, carrying signs and wearing masks that allowed them to muster energetic, if muffled, chants. This was not a planned rally, more like a flash mob without the theatrics. Biden, insistent on modelling good medical etiquette during the pandemic, schedules no grand gatherings, leaving them to his rival, Donald Trump, who, before his coronavirus diagnosis, routinely spoke from a stage, with Air Force One positioned scenically behind him, as thousands cheered his boasts and invective.
A line of police officers kept the crowd away from the brick foundry, where Biden’s motorcade was parked. Closest to the building, about a hundred Trump supporters had gathered, many waving campaign banners. One homemade poster read “A Vote for Biden = Socialism.” Another said, “Build the Wall with Liberal Tears.” A chant for four more years merged into one for four more terms. Few on the Trump side wore a mask. All of the Biden supporters did, including Darlene Wellner, an eighty-year-old retired social worker. I asked Wellner what brought her out for Biden. She started with Trump’s dishonesty and turned to his environmental policies. “So much damage has been done. It’s just heartbreaking what is happening in this country,” she said. Wellner has taken it upon herself to write thirty postcards to people she considers fence-sitters. “If I can influence five of them, it wouldn’t be bad.”
Biden had arrived in Manitowoc, a town on Lake Michigan, largely thanks to Sachin Shivaram, the C.E.O. of Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry, who was so worried about Biden’s chances in the state that he contacted everyone he knew in hopes of persuading the campaign to deploy the candidate. “If you don’t have that on-the-ground presence of the candidate, it trickles down,” he told me. In his community of De Pere, he saw a surfeit of Trump signs, and almost none for his rival. At the factory, the union leadership supported Biden, but he noticed that some workers were wearing maga gear. He was thrilled to hear, about seventy-two hours ahead of time, that Biden would be seeking attention in Manitowoc, in a state where Hillary Clinton barely competed. He wasn’t alone. On the afternoon of the visit, the Manitowoc County Democratic Party storefront was bustling. “We’re in Trump country,” Karen Steingraber, a volunteer, said, as she assembled Biden-Harris signs, “but we do what we can.”
Inside the foundry, Biden delivered a series of sharp-edged attacks to a few dozen carefully distanced onlookers and reporters. The speech was good stuff for the faithful—evidence that Biden, at seventy-seven, could deliver a biting anti-Trump narrative, along with his customary empathy toward the families of the covid-19 dead and those who are struggling financially. Addressing the working-class voters in Wisconsin who favored Trump last time, he pledged, “You will be seen, heard, and respected by me.” Speaking, as he often does, from behind a surgical mask, he said, “Frankly, I’ve dealt with guys like Trump my whole life. Guys from the neighborhood I come from who would look down on us because we didn’t have a lot of money or your parents didn’t go to college. Guys who think they’re better than you. Guys who inherit everything they’ve ever gotten in their life and squander it. Guys who stretch and squeeze and stiff electricians and plumbers and contractors working on their hotels and casinos and golf courses just to put a few more bucks in their pocket. Guys who do everything they can to avoid paying the taxes they owe because they figure the rest of us, the little people, we can pick up the tab for the country.”
On paper, Wisconsin looks eminently winnable this year for Biden and the Democrats. The respected Marquette Law School poll, released on Wednesday, showed Biden ahead by five points, with a Libertarian candidate, Jo Jorgensen, receiving four per cent, and Trump favored by just forty-one per cent of likely voters. If it weren’t for the shock of 2016, when polls showed Clinton comfortably ahead in October, Biden supporters’ worry meter would be much lower. “Every Democrat is on edge,” Ben Wikler, the chairman of the Wisconsin Democratic Party, told me as we sat on his back porch, in Madison. “To me, it means that every Democrat will work their heart out.” Trump was the first Republican Presidential candidate to win the state since 1984, but his winning margin was less than one per cent of the roughly three million votes cast, suggesting that even minor adjustments in the Clinton campaign’s message or tactics could have changed the outcome. Clinton received 238,449 fewer votes than Barack Obama had four years earlier, including forty thousand fewer in Milwaukee alone. Yet she lost the state by only 22,748 votes.
Clinton and her team assumed that they would win Wisconsin with a minimal investment, even after she was pummelled in the Democratic primary, losing to Bernie Sanders by thirteen points. Only in the last two weeks of the campaign did Clinton advertise on television in Milwaukee, Green Bay, and Madison. This year, Biden has dominated television advertising for months. In one measure of the intensified effort, a list of campaign events, Biden interviews, surrogate appearances, and radio and television advertisements stretches to two single-spaced pages. And the ground game is broad. By the campaign’s count, three thousand people have done phone-banking sessions in Milwaukee, where there are forty teams of volunteers and dozens of paid staffers. (The campaign declined to say exactly how many.) “We definitely learned our lesson,” Marcelia Nicholson, the chairwoman of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors, told me.
Despite polling averages that have shown Trump lagging Biden for months, the Republicans, too, are boasting of their efforts on the ground and including rallies in the schedule. Before his coronavirus diagnosis, Trump had planned to hold events in La Crosse and Green Bay; Vice-President Mike Pence has visited the state five times since July, including a recent trip to Eau Claire, where he was joined by Ivanka Trump. The campaign is trying to fortify rural counties that voted for Obama twice before flipping to Trump in 2016; it also took the rare step of opening an office in Milwaukee, aiming to reduce Biden’s large margins among Black and Latino voters. Team Trump has held training sessions with more than six thousand people, according to the campaign. Samantha Zager, the deputy national press secretary, noted, “We’re the only campaign in the state currently asking Wisconsinites for their votes in person.” She described Biden’s bid for Wisconsin as “too little, too late.”
I asked Wikler how Democrats intend to avoid a nail-biter this time. “Organizing,” he said. “In 2016, you’d go into an office and no one would be there. Someone behind a table would tell you to pick up a clipboard and bring it back when you’re done.” The next year, Martha Laning, Wikler’s predecessor, began building a statewide organizing effort that would operate year-round rather than emerge near the end of a campaign cycle. “You hire organizers to recruit local leaders to build neighborhood teams. They’re volunteer team leaders, they recruit volunteers. Those teams are responsible for organizing their neighborhoods,” Wikler said, likening them to old-school ward captains. In 2018, Democrats swept the elections for statewide offices for the first time since 1982.The current ground game is a joint operation of the Biden campaign and the Wisconsin Democrats. In addition, staff and volunteers from a raft of independent organizations are working to get out the vote. In Milwaukee, significant efforts are under way by Black Leaders Organizing for Communities (bloc) and Voces de la Frontera Action, which focusses on the city’s hundred thousand Latino residents, as well as other Latinos around the state. Since Kamala Harris, a Howard University graduate and member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, joined the ticket, organizers have been drawing strength from members of the Divine Nine historically Black fraternities and sororities. In Fitchburg, the state’s first elected Black mayor, Frances Huntley-Cooper, an Alpha Kappa Alpha, called it “an automatic network. I have so many sisters who are on the phone every day.” Many others, she said, are helping people navigate the requirements for voting by mail, and volunteering as poll workers.
Then there is money. In one sign of the Democrats’ success, last month’s live reading of the script of “The Princess Bride,” by most of the original cast, attracted an astonishing hundred and ten thousand viewers and raised $4.25 million. The cast members of “Parks and Recreation,” “The West Wing,” and “Veep” appeared on other nights. Citing the organizing oomph, the Democrats I spoke to in several Wisconsin cities expressed confidence in Biden’s chances, if the election is fair and square. Their worry is that Republicans will find ways to suppress Democratic turnout. For months, Trump has been groundlessly attacking mail-in voting, recently tweeting falsely, for example, “The Ballots being returned to States cannot be accurately counted. Many things are already going wrong.” With court battles over voting rules already under way in Wisconsin, I asked Mandela Barnes, the state’s Democratic lieutenant governor, what he foresees. He said, “Republicans are going to use any tactic they can try to keep people from voting, because they know that lower turnout is typically beneficial to them.”
More than a million voters have already requested an absentee ballot, and more than six hundred thousand have voted. Anticipating a torrent, election officials are getting creative. Some have positioned drop boxes outside public buildings, such as libraries, in Milwaukee. In Madison, a Democratic stronghold, hired clerks sit outside the City-County Building during office hours to collect ballots, first checking that they have been signed and witnessed. The city organized two events called Democracy in the Park, where poll workers stationed themselves in two hundred and six parks to register voters and receive ballots. On the first day, roughly ten thousand people delivered ballots. An attorney for two of the state’s most senior Republican legislators unsuccessfully tried to stop the exercise, arguing that it was “an illegal collection of ballots.” Republicans are also in federal court trying to limit the number of days that ballots, postmarked by Election Day, November 3rd, will be received and counted. Yet even as Trump rails against the dangers of absentee voting, the Wisconsin Republican Party is saying precisely the opposite, in literature designed to be hung on a voter’s door handle. “Absentee and Early in-person voting are safe and secure ways to guarantee your voice is heard,” the flyer says, featuring a stylized black-and-white photo of Trump, with only his trademark red tie in color, pointing at the camera. “president trump wants YOU to make a PLAN to vote TODAY!” I picked up the door-hanger at an office of the Racine County Republican Party, in Burlington. Among other handouts was a card showing a Photoshopped highway sign that read, “Caution: Democrat Voter Fraud Ahead.” Behind the counter, a volunteer, who asked not to be identified for fear of being targeted by Trump opponents, said he was afraid that Democrats would try to steal the election. “I know if Democrats lose,” he said matter-of-factly, “they will try to burn the country down.”
Trump, whose campaign is lagging financially, is distributing flyers that misrepresent Biden’s record and positions. One, with the Trump campaign’s signature, is printed handsomely in red, white, blue, and gray. It wrongly states that Biden is calling for defunding the police, that he intends to “raise taxes on the middle class,” and supports climate policy that would cost ninety-three trillion dollars. I spotted it when I visited the middle-class Milwaukee suburb of Brown Deer, where Emily Siegrist, a Democratic nurse practitioner and former soldier in the Wisconsin National Guard, is running ahead of Dan Knodl, a Republican state legislator, who defeated her in 2018. This time, she is well-funded and working hard. When I caught up with her, she was wearing cut-off jean shorts and a gray sweatshirt that said, “Girls Unite.” I asked about the Democrats’ decision not to knock on doors or hold rallies, in contrast to the Trump campaign and many down-ballot Republicans. She said it makes campaigning harder, and creates a wild card in predicting the outcome. Although her volunteers have made fifteen thousand phone calls, by her estimate, she sometimes can’t resist campaigning the old-fashioned way. “I’ll ring the doorbell and jump back. I’ll talk to them from a distance, ‘My name’s Emily. I just want to introduce myself.’ ”
Back in Manitowoc, Shivaram revelled in the positive vibes from the crowd that gathered to cheer Biden. “I had no idea that this many people supported Biden in Manitowoc,” he said. Although Biden held no rally and shook no hands, the visit accomplished its pandemic-era goals by earning plenty of local television, radio, and print coverage from the foundry speech and interviews with reporters in the larger Green Bay market. “The media coverage made the visit look big. That really energized people,” Shivaram said. So, I asked him, was he feeling better about Biden’s chances? “From my little corner, it doesn’t feel good at all,” he replied. “I’m scared he is going to lose.”
submitted by UrbanCentrist to neoliberal [link] [comments]

Xavier DuPont de Ligonnès Article from Society, 6 Aug 2020, Part 2C [English]

Xavier DuPont de Ligonnès Article from Society, 6 Aug 2020, Part 2C [English]
Previous Section-Part 2B
[3/5]
Chapter 9

Highways and dead ends

The hunt for Xavier Ligonnès is enough to drive you crazy. It’s like looking for a lost object, a bank card for example, of which we can determine the exact moment of disappearance: we used it to pay, it was there, and the next moment it is not there anymore. Logic dictates that we look for it where we usually store it (a wallet, a handbag), then where it could be (a back pocket of pants, a hall cabinet), and the less we find it , the more we seem to see it everywhere. Faced with absence, the brain constructs images (the credit card in an office drawer, as a bookmark in a book, forgotten on the counter of the last store) but these are fictions or mirages; they encourage further research but they do not provide a solution. Xavier Ligonnès’s apparent volatilization follows the same logic and produces the same effects on the investigation. The more weeks and months go by, the more places to look get smaller. Emmanuel Teneur ends up leading the investigators to the Société Générale agency on Place Royale in Nantes, but the safe he holds there is simply empty. A request for information on Joven Soliman is sent to the security attaché for the French Embassy in the Philippines. He is a sedevacantist priest, a fringe of traditionalist Catholicism who considers the Pope to be an imposter. The attaché transmits the hours of mass where he officiates. A trip to the Philippines is being considered, but that would mean going to the other side of the world to look for a needle in the thousands of islands of the archipelago. If this track has never been closed, nothing has supported it to date.
Since we must push logic to the end, the investigators even contact the American authorities to corroborate or contradict the story of protected witnesses told by Ligonnès in his famous letter. The DEA has never heard of the individual, and the liaison officer based at the Miami consulate assures us that his last trip to the United States was in 2003: Ligonnès arrived in Florida on July 18 and left on August 22. The study of his entourage also did not highlight anyone capable of providing false papers to the fugitive, and if he had gone through a criminal network, the police believed that an informant would undoubtedly have warned them to protect himself.
Then there are the news reports: the portrait of Ligonnès goes around France, and even if he has undoubtedly changed his physical appearance, his hairstyle, perhaps had even resorted to cosmetic surgery, someone, somewhere, might recognize him one day. After all, that’s how John List, a New Jersey insurance salesman who killed his wife and mother in 1971, was arrested. He waited for two of his children to return from school to coldly shoot them, then attended his youngest son’s football game before shooting bullets through him at home. He evaded justice for 18 years until a co-worker recognized him from a report on America’s Most Wanted.
Rarely has a criminal case given rise to as many appeals as that of Ligonnès, because his stalking not only bewitches the police, it torments an entire country. More than 1000 reports, thousands of pages of depositions, letters, verifications. You have to imagine the miles of printed paper that this represents when they are stacked on a desk. The most recent: in July, after the broadcast of a Netflix documentary on the subject in the United States, the producers of the film claimed to have received an interesting lead in Chicago; but it’s just one more drop in the bucket. Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès has been seen in Annecy, Nancy, Cholet, Corsica (several times); on the side of a road, thumbs up, by a French tourist in Las Vegas; disguised as a chimney sweep in Nîmes; in a hotel in Cantal and in a pizzeria where he paid cash in a hurry; seen again in Germany, in Italy, and heard on the telephone by the reception of the psychiatric hospital of Troyes. Since he disappeared looking like the ordinary neighbor, since he was a representative and his profession has taken him to all corners of France, there is no less reason to see him in Mulhouse than in Roche-sur-Yon, and you can simply see him everywhere.
Aire de Lançon-Provence in July 2020
Extracts: “It was the same look, except that he looked very sad, in the west, but he had the same glasses as in the photo you are showing me”; “He looked like a man like everyone else, but there was something odd in his eyes;” “Yesterday, around 1:00 pm, I was watching the news on television on the TFI channel. I saw a report where an individual killed his children and his wife before disappearing into the wild. (...) Seeing the gentleman in the photo, I made the connection with the person whom I had crossed Sunday afternoon because he had the same smile.” At the Vauvert tourist office: “I hardly look at the news, but Thursday evening I saw the photo of Mr. Ligonnès, I had the impression of having already seen him, my heart was racing.” Between Carpentras and Avignon, when he comes back from the bakery, the manager of one of Nicolas Sarkozy’s brothers crosses paths with a man with a beige bob, which he is certain is the fugitive. “I flashed,” he says. “For me, there is no doubt. This is him.” Still more letters are sent to the police to offer them help. An amateur astrologer requests a copy of the suspect’s birth certificate to establish a birth chart, a woman in child-like writing recommended a great medium who had helped her find her daughter who had become a junkie in Marseille. A prisoner asked in writing to be sent to Guinea to go hunt him down in the jungle, attaching to his letter a list of the necessary equipment, including infrared glasses and a “samurai sword.”
With each letter, with each phone call to report a suspicious individual, investigators attempt to cross-reference the information. They patiently collect the testimonies of the depositors to know where Xavier Ligonnès was seen, if he was accompanied or not, what was his size and his outfit. Inconsistent testimonies or those referring to individuals who are too young (Ligonnès would be 59 years old today) and too small (he measures a little over 1.80 meters) are discarded. For the others, investigators check the CCTV recordings, when they have not been erased and when the cameras have actually recorded on tape. If the person has been spotted pumping gasoline, in a Géant Casino, or in a Courtepaille, they trace the means of payment used and seize the duplicates of bank cards. They give priority to the restaurants, especially the Buffalo Grill, Ligonnès’ favorite establishment. And when the trail is still hot and the dishes haven’t been done yet, they collect DNA from the plates and cutlery. A few months after the start of the investigation, the investigating judge in charge of the case will even be forced to ask them to slow down, the seals starting to take on the appearance of a china cabinet in a large restaurant.
The Total service station in Lançon-Provence, July 2020
The PJ of Nantes believed on several occasions to finally have in hand the winning ticket and to be on the point of intercepting Ligonnès. This was the case in Borgo, where a photo taken from the video surveillance of a supermarket in this small Corsican town was very similar. Upon verification, it was only a local. They believed in it even more in January 2018 when they were told that an individual with a strong resemblance to Xavier Ligonnès was at the Saint-Désert Notre-Dame de Pitié monastery near Roquebrune-sur-Argens. About twenty police officers raided and searched the premises until they came across Brother Jean-Marie Joseph, who certainly looked disturbingly like Ligonnès, but who was not him. In still other cases, the police were never able to “close the track,” and it is perhaps Ligonnès who was seen.
For example, in Lançon-Provence, April 26, 2011. That day, at 2:44 am, Mahjoub B., a handler by profession, parks his vehicle at the Total service station after the Lançon-Provence toll. He fills up, then goes to the store to pay. On his way, he passes a 45- to 50-year-old man, about six feet tall, who hangs out there between the gas pumps and the store. When he returns to his vehicle, his colleague asks him if he has seen the man, whom he is convinced is the one everyone is looking for, the one who killed his family in Nantes. Mahjoub then takes a new look at the individual, notices that he is wearing glasses, light jeans, that he has brown hair a little graying and a beard of a day. At his feet, four rigid shopping bags, one red, one white, one brown and one whose color he cannot distinguish. Inside the store, employees also noticed the individual. He’s been out for almost three hours. At one point, he walks in to ask for free coffee, as part of a promotion. Behind her cash register, Jocelyne H. notes a detail: he is missing a tooth. “The second on the left, I believe,” she says when heard by investigators. This is information that has never filtered out and yet, it’s true – a little detail, Xavier Ligonnès was missing a tooth. Little by little, the space has filled in, but you can always see it when he smiles. The images from the station’s surveillance cameras are confusing: if this man is not the one we are looking for, it must be his twin brother. At 3 a.m., the cameras show him hitchhiking by a Volkswagen Combi, which investigators quickly find. The driver’s name is Christophe B. He has not heard of the case, and he must be one of the only ones in the country; but Christophe is no longer listening to the news because, he says, “the news is bad all the time.” From the hitchhiker on the night of the 25th to the 26th, he remembers that he “did not smell very good” and that he had a growing beard. They didn’t discuss much. The man simply told him that he was coming from Paris where he had gone to see “his sick old father,” and that he wanted to take the train to Aix-en-Provence. Christophe dropped him off at a motorway exit, the 30 or the 31, between 4 a.m. and 4.15 a.m. The surveillance cameras at Aix train station allow you to get back on track. He is filmed on the forecourt at 6 am, he wears light pants, a dark jacket. He buys a ticket at 1.20 euro, free destination. Then we lose track.
Despite all the checks, despite all the cameras, it will be impossible to track this man perfectly resembling Dupont de Ligonnès, who could nevertheless have confirmed that he was, at least on this date, still alive.
How can one suddenly evaporate in plain sight, and how could a man who has collected chess all his life accomplish this feat? The XDDL mystery makes it possible to scaffold all the theories. These flourish in books, in docudramas and, of course, on the Internet. We imagine Ligonnès protected by the secrecy of a monastery, flown to the United States, where he can go unnoticed thanks to his English without an accent, or even on the escape alongside a woman he would have manipulated. The police officers in charge of the case do not work on theories or psychological profiles, but according to a scientific approach: they always start from a fact, which opens a track, which they then explore until the end, close, and move on to another. This method is also a way to protect yourself from endless guesswork, or insanity, but it doesn’t always work. Several times, the track looks like a highway towards the fugitive, and the police are convinced that they will finally close this investigation. But they end up stumbling upon the worst thing ever, as was the case with the allusion to Emmanuel Teneur’s sailboat: coincidences.
Coincidence number 1. When the Ligonnès C5 was discovered in the Formula 1 car park in Roquebrune, the night watchman informed them that two reservations had been made in the name of Dupont Xavier, one on April 5 and the another on April 14. The hotel manager then specifies that the first reservation was actually made for April 6. That day, however, XDDL was in Nantes, probably digging the grave of Thomas, murdered the day before. Had he thought of accomplishing his crimes earlier or had he reserved a room for an accomplice, who might have been hiding something for him? The videos of April 5 and 6 are no longer available, but payment for the room was made with a Crédit Agricole credit card. The number gives a name, Faiçal E., and an address. Could it be an accomplice? The checks are launched immediately lead to a man who simply used “Dupont Xavier” as an assumed name - like Ligonnès - to book a night in the same hotel, the same year, the same month, within ten days.
Coincidence number 2. The liaison officer in Miami launches research around the various aliases used by XDDL, for operations of “mystery shopper” or to stay in hotels. In the FBI file, he finds a certain Xavier Laurent, one of Ligonnès’s favorite nicknames, installed in Jacksonville, north of Florida. Jacksonville is not just any city. This is where Hugues, the cousin of XDDL lived, and it is also this locality that Ligonnès and his friend Michel Rétif declared to customs in 1990 during their trip to the United States. At the very end of the personalized letter sent to Michel on April 8, Xavier Ligonnès seemed to allude to it: “I will think about you there. (Not the right to tell you where, but you went there with me...in November 90…a clue to dig. LOL).” But this Xavier Laurent is another twist of fate: the police come across a certain Evan Shaffer, a petty criminal who has chosen this alias to commit crimes.
Coincidence number 3. Ten days before the crimes, XDDL reconnects with a childhood sweetheart, Catherine K., whom he met in Versailles in the 1980s. Between March 22 and 24, they exchange text messages and try to find a date to meet the week of April 12, in Chamonix. These messages intrigue the investigators, some answers seem surprising, almost illogical, and they suspect Ligonnès of having wanted to ensure a logistical relay in his escape. A little later, a certain Patrick O. reports having seen XDDL in the queue of a Sixt car rental agency at Nice airport on April 17, 2011. By peeling the names of dozens of people having rented a car that day, the police officers miss the infarction: in capital letters, white on black, appears the surname of Catherine, who would have rented a vehicle at 1:30 am. A few hours later, their heart rate drops again: it was only a perfect disambiguation.
Each coincidence causes the same chain of reactions. First a eureka!, the certainty of having finally found the tiny detail from which to trace everything. The police then cast their nets like fishermen on the high seas, telephone or banking requisitions, requests for listings, identity checks. Then they wait. It can last from a few hours to several weeks, and inevitably it is a burning, nagging wait, tense by the fear that the track will fly away. Finally, there is the immense disappointment and the obligation to face reality again: Xavier Ligonnès is still nowhere to be found, a track has flown again, and we have to hoist the rock up the mountain again. Those who have worked or are still working on the affair strive to maintain a cold, rational, police facade. But little by little, by dint of chasing a shadow - not even a shadow, a ghost - obsession lurks. One of them, a police officer with a professional Protestant pastor, now out of the investigation, still returned until recently to consult the investigation file every week, saying he simply wanted to put the 12,000 pages of documents in order. For a year, a criminal analyst has also been mobilized. He enters all the elements of the file in a software which digests them and spits out, perhaps, new threads to draw. In the meantime, the two police officers who are still following the investigation - one at the PJ in Nantes, one at the OCRVP, in Paris - “live” the case, as their colleagues say. Among these thousands of pages there is no doubt a clue that has gone unnoticed or, better, a lead that has not yet been explored.
Track number 1. Who typed “fraternité saint-thomas becket” on Google on April 3 at 11:34 pm, before clicking on a link in the Cité-Catholique forum? Is it the same person who, the same night at 2:01 am, from an iPhone, did the search for “communion state mortal sin,” bringing it to the same forum? On April 8, the user of this phone will in any case send the search engine the request “hello Chacou”, which will lead him (her) again to the Cité-Catholique forum. Chacou was one of the pseudonyms of Xavier Ligonnès. Investigators saw crazier coincidences, but still: can it really be someone other than Xavier Ligonnès, who himself connected to Cité-Catholique almost every day of his escape? The last article published on the site about Saint-Thomas Becket, an ultra-traditionalist fraternity which practices mass in Latin, dates from January 2009. It indicates the name of its founder, Father Jean-Pierre Gac, and specifies this: “Born in the diocese of Blois where there are two communities (…), the fraternity has also extended in the diocese of Toulon - a parish is also entrusted to them in Ollioules.” Ollioules is located six kilometers from La Seyne-on-Mer, where XDDL spent its penultimate known night, and 94 kilometers from Roquebrune. Jean-Pierre Gac was questioned by the police but claimed to have never been in contact with the fugitive. Investigators have always believed in the possibility that Ligonnès took refuge in a monastery in the Var. They considered to search them one by one, before understanding that there are dozens and dozens of brotherhoods and fraternities, that they are not always castles of the Purple Rivers but sometimes simple farms, lost in the hinterland. To mount a search, it would be necessary to ensure that they do not communicate with each other, and therefore to visit them all at the same time. The examining magistrate quickly tempered the fervor of the police and declared the operation impossible.
Track number 2. Xavier Ligonnès had two secret Facebook accounts. The first is named after his favorite country singer, Waylon Jennings. One of his nieces had also found him a month before the crimes, sending him a message, “but who is behind this nickname?,” to which XDDL had immediately replied “How did you manage to arrive on the Waylon Jennings Facebook profile? Too clever! Microsoft Advantage??? Kiss.” The second account concerns a certain “George Town” residing in Nantes and is linked to one of Ligonnès’ many email addresses, [email protected]. The police send a requisition to the management of Facebook in Palo Alto to obtain the creation and connection logs of the two profiles. The answer comes in days: the first was created in February 2010, the second in December 2007, when France had barely discovered the social network. Above all, the response indicates that Ligonnès connected to the two accounts on the night of April 4 to 5, between the first assassinations and that of Thomas. The profiles have since been deleted but suggest he could have used them to communicate with a third party. Catherine K., the youthful lover that XDDL contacted a few days before the tragedy, also reported to the police that she had been approached by a certain Philippe Steiner, whom she did not know, around May 20. He sent her a strange message, suggesting that they might have had a relationship in the past. When she went to respond, the profile had already been deleted. Today there are almost 100 Facebook accounts on behalf of Waylon Jennings, some are created and deleted every day.
Track number 3. When the Ligonnès family is having their last meal on April 3, 2011, around 9 pm, a young woman walks through the glass doors of the police station on Place Waldeck-Rousseau in Nantes. Originally from a small village near Vannes, Julie is a BTS student and comes to file a complaint: the Twingo that her father lets her drive has been broken into, probably during the night. There was not much inside, but Julie reported the theft of her car radio as well as the vehicle’s logbook, which she normally stored in a small Renault gray faux leather pouch. This same pouch was found on April 22 in the dresser of the Ligonnès living room where Xavier used to store his papers, during the investigation the day after the discovery of the bodies. The police did not follow this track: they put the break-in of Julie’s car on the account of one of the Ligonnès sons, Arthur, who had already been arrested for theft of a bicycle and driving under the influence of cannabis. But why would Arthur have taken the vehicle papers with the car stereo, and why would he put them in the middle of his father’s papers? And if the theft was committed by Xavier Ligonnès a few hours before killing his family, how can this be explained? Was he able to steal other identity papers to facilitate his escape?
In this case, it is always about cars. Those imported by XDDL from the United States, the Citroën C5 from the escape, the vehicles he claimed had been stolen over the years: the first at the Brest police station in 1998, while living in Pornic, a second at the same time at the Saint-Nazaire police station, and then again, in Nantes, on May 17, 2006, a Golf convertible finally found then sold a few months later to a mechanic, a friend of Cédric M.
Cédric M. is never far away when it comes to cars. He is also a mechanic, that’s how Ligonnès met him in Vannes a few years earlier. He is one of the recipients of the departure letter, therefore a close friend. He was even the first employee of the RDC. Ligonnès regularly went to visit him in Locmalo in the heart of Morbihan, a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Nantes. With Cédric and his partner, Renaud, they went to the local creperie. They had lunch there together on March 31, 2011, four days before the crimes. In the village, it is said that Ligonnès took care of the dark accounts of the “guys,” who have quite a reputation. Could he have built up a slush fund there that no one would have found until now? Cédric and Renaud’s garage is not indicated by any sign. It is at the end of a road. In the yard, wrecks of American cars and a goat on a leash. Inside, Renaud is working on a shiny yellow Cadillac. His attitude is confusing. He is angry with the police who have never come to question him when he is, according to him, “the last to have seen [Xavier] alive. But I will not tell you when, because that the date is important,” he adds before returning to his Cadillac, wrench in hand.
To date, Renaud has still not been heard by investigators.
At the same time, reports continue to flow.
Ligonnès seen in Mulhouse, on the four lanes between Saint-Brieuc and Rennes in a Peugeot 308 and overtaking on the right, Ligonnès seen again in Tunis and Toulouse.
Ligonnès seen, but never caught.

Next Section-Part 2D
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From Conspiracy to Fact: An analysis of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Information Control, and the New World Order (Appendix includes hundreds of citations) - PART 1

PLEASE NOTE: This article may be updated periodically with new information and links as they become available. All referenced information and a whole lot more is indexed and linked in the related appendix posts. Please feel free to crosspost, share, and take from my ideas to build your own. Namaste.
Part 1 | Part 2 | Appendix A | Appendix B

Hello. My name is Chris. I am nobody, really. An average citizen. I am an overweight 42 year old white male from the Midwestern suburbs of the US who has been fortunate enough to live a pretty comfortable life. I used to be a freelance graphic designer with a focus on small businesses, but I'm coming to terms with the fact that that career and part of my life is more than likely over in light of current events. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.
I've always been concerned about social injustice and tried to stay politically informed, even dabbling in some activism here and there. At times I've stepped away from paying attention for my own mental health, or due to laziness, defeatism, whatever. But I've never stopped caring, or trying, to fight the good fight and do the right thing.
The news recently has of course swept us all up, and touched all our lives in some way or another. The world has never seen anything like the "Coronavirus Pandemic," and it's clear that our society will be changed forever when we finally come out the other end of this mess. But I've had the luxury of time recently, and in reading the news about things that were going on, I couldn't help but notice the patterns, and that a lot of stuff didn't exactly make sense.
So, here we go, with the "conspiracy theory."
I hate that term, because although it's technically accurate, it's been demonized and weaponized by the media and society at large to take on a bad connotation. Tinfoil hats, alien abductions, crazy people muttering to themselves, etc. You've no doubt got a lot of images in your mind of a conspiracy theorist.
And make no mistake, what I'm going to tell you here is all currently very popular conspiracy theory. However, I think that by removing opinions and conjecture from it, and focusing on facts and things that have already happened, I can present this huge amount of overwhelming, disparate information in a way that makes it less a "theory" and more a "research project." And so that is how I have approached this.
I have spent the last week doing little else besides reading every news and opinion article I could find, saving and organizing hundreds of links, and assembling a coherent, logical outline to organize and present these theories, and more importantly, facts. There are a lot of less-than-reputable sites and publications out there, and I have tried when at all possible to provide sources from verifiable news sites, with a wide range of slants and focuses, to illustrate that what is happening is not part of any one particular political agenda.
I hope that you take the time to check the links, really look into the information presented here, and form your own opinions. Please do not just take my word for it. To that end, there are also a few links mixed in that are labeled as having come from conspiracy. These are well-written and well-reasoned posts from other concerned citizens that I think are worth reading, and relevant to the discussion here.
One last thing - If you are new to most of these ideas, the information presented here is more than likely going to seem overwhelming at first. I encourage you now, and always, to take mental health breaks for yourself, and put down your phone or turn off your computer. The information will be here when you come back. And as you'll soon understand, what is happening is an unstoppable tide, truly a force of nature at this point, and there is nothing you can do to fight it, so try your hardest to relax, put on some chill music, hug your dog, and most of all...
BREATHE.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
If you start researching conspiracy theory, you're going to find a lot of information. Some much better or worse presented than others, and some much more plausible or unbelievable than others. Despite the seeming ridiculousness of some things you might read, I encourage you to always approach new information with an open mind.
That said though, I have one main principle that guides all my beliefs about conspiracy theories, and that is the "Filter of Likelihood." Essentially, you have to ask yourself how possible, how likely, and how feasible a piece of information is. Furthermore, you need to ask yourself what the motivation would be. In many cases, it's quite easy to see how something makes a lot of sense based on other known info, whereas some theories seem rather implausible no matter how you look at it.
I am interested only in the plausible, and where possible, the already actualized. Additionally, there's a lot to be said, and a lot that has already been written on many of these topics, so I will focus on current events and simple concepts.
I will also ask you to open your mind to possibility. Please consider this as you evaluate new information:
  1. Do you believe there are things going on in the world that you don't know about yet?
  2. Do you believe that there is technology and science you've never heard of?
  3. Do you believe that society is progressing at an increasing rate?
  4. Do you believe that as populations grow, we require new societal strategies?
  5. Do you believe that those with power and money want to retain their power and money?
Of course you believe all these things, and none of these are wild or unusual concepts. Rather, these are very basic concepts that apply to everyone, and always have. They are all part of our shared human experience, and undeniable facts of life. Populations grow, societies evolve, technology advances, and the world changes. And most important to our discussion here, people, families, and empires constantly jockey for power and control, while fighting for resources, power, fame, and...
MONEY.
We all hate TicketMaster, right? Who do they think they are, what the hell is this bullshit "service fee," etc. It's something everyone can get behind. But did you know that TicketMaster willingly cultivates that image? That venues, teams, and artists, in their pursuit of more money, raise fees and then let TicketMaster be the bad guy and take the heat so their reputations remain intact?
There are many more people, organizations, and other entities in the world playing that same role for those who really have the money, who really call the shots. And those who call the shots work very hard and spend absolutely unfathomable amounts of money, time, and blood, to make sure that you don't ever realize who's actually taking your money.
They do this in the simplest, easiest way. If you simply control information from the top down, and disseminate it when and where you see fit, you can effect great societal change without lifting a finger.
Please imagine... really, try to imagine... You just read an article, saw a video, whatever, from a very, very reputable source. And it just informed you that an asteroid was 83% likely to impact the Earth next month. What would you do? What would happen in the world?
Hopefully an asteroid will not hit next month, but it's important to really imagine what would happen and why, and how. Because a huge amount of information would be generated and published, people would panic, society would crumble, and the world as you know it would change forever in an instant, the moment you read that headline.
Control of information is one of the most powerful tools known to mankind today. A person living in 2020 can easily encounter as much information in a day as someone in Medieval times might have encountered in a lifetime. And it comes at you from all angles, in all forms, non-stop, 24/7. Much like the water in the pipe, the information is always there, and one needs but turn it on.
Disseminating the information then becomes a practice all its own, and to be sure, information processing accounts for more than half of the US GDP. And the rate at which it's spread, and way it is handled makes a huge difference in the societal repercussions. So a few different techniques are used:
It might be the greatest understatement of all time to say that there has been a lot of information passed around about COVID-19, the "Coronavirus," recently. In fact, there has never been anything like what we are currently experiencing in all of human history, and not by a long shot. And this unprecedented turn of events has caused a lot of people to react in a lot of ways, and say and do a lot of things, for better or for worse.
Full disclosure: In particular, if you look up conspiracy theory, you'll see a lot of stuff suggesting that the "Coronavirus is a hoax." (You'll also find a lot of poorly-written rambling) I want to be clear that I DO NOT believe that. I am 100% sure that there is a Coronavirus, that it is making people sick, that a lot of people are dying, and that our medical professionals and many other undervalued workers are overwhelmed, and breaking their backs every day to do their best to keep their friends, families, and loved ones safe. I am extraordinarily grateful for them and admire the resolve and bravery that so many have shown in the face of this disaster. I do not think it is a hoax at all.
However, I think that literally everything else that is happening surrounding the "pandemic" is.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
The Pandemic
In the first week of January this year, I got sick. Really sick. I know when I got it and who I got it from, and honestly the exact moment I got it (I only was in proximity of the dude for a few minutes). He had warned me that he was really sick, and I blew it off. I started feeling sick a day or two later, and a day or two after that I felt like I was dying. Fever, chills, aches, extraordinary fatigue. And literal, nonstop, 24/7 coughing. I had every single symptom of what we now know as COVID-19. I commented to anyone who would listen that I didn't recall ever feeling that sick before in my entire life. The most memorable part of it though was that after a couple days, I completely lost my sense of smell and taste. Joked a lot about how you could feed me onions and soap cause I'd have no idea. I try to have a good attitude about being sick.
I spent a week sleeping on the couch before I finally went to the doctor. She gave me a Prednisolone steroid pack (which has worked well for me in the past), some Trazodone to knock me out, and Benzonatotate for my cough. As soon as I took the first dose of steroids I started to feel pretty fucking great, and it was more or less a non-issue after that.
I spoke to a lot of people about it then and after, and man, I can't tell you how many stories I personally heard from people I know that said the exact same thing. Then I started reading the same story over and over again on Reddit:
We didn't start really hearing about the Coronavirus in the media until the beginning of March, and we didn't hear about the "Pandemic" until just a couple weeks ago. And what a couple weeks it's been since then. But I am quite certain that it's been around for a lot longer and that I, and a lot of other people I know, had it - and DID NOT DIE FROM IT - way back in January.
We now know that the first documented case in the US was on January 19th, but that word "documented" is so, so important here. That means that we had identified the virus, developed a test, and tested a person with the symptoms that day. It does NOT mean that was when the virus reached the United States. How sick do you have to be before you take a day off work? Before you go to the doctor? With America's healthcare system or lack thereof, it's almost certain that many people had this virus before we determined what it was, and how infectious it really was.
There is also the matter of the statistics of severity vs the regular flu. This is a highly contentious topic and I am no medical expert, and do not wish to make any assertions. However, what I can tell you from my personal experience is this: I had a horrible "flu" in January, got basic medicine, got better. So, either I had the flu, or perhaps I did indeed have the Coronavirus.
We will never know because I was never tested. But the important thing is that it doesn't matter. Either I (and many others) had the Coronavirus and it did not kill us (calling into question the severity of the infection) or we just had a bad cold or flu, but it had the exact same symptoms as COVID-19 (calling into question the extent of Coronavirus diagnoses). But logically, one of those two statements is true.
Furthermore, the data keeps changing, and I don't mean increasing on a daily basis. I mean up and down, back and forth, it is deadly or maybe it isn't, etc. On January 14 the WHO told you it couldn't spread from human to human. But then on Jan 19 we saw the first case of Coronavirus in the United States. Then it turns out that the Wuhan market outbreak began earlier in December. And then it's an "epidemic," but most people will only get mild symptoms. What are you supposed to believe? And it sure does seem to come at you as a firehose, and it's hard to even think about anything because OHMYGODTHECORONAVIRUS!
But let's stop and look a couple basic facts. As a matter of fact, I'm going to let Dr. Sucharit Bhakdi explain this one to you. This is a very informative 10 minute video, watch it:
Sucharit Bhakdi - Very clear math showing that the COVID statistics are being manipulated
So 80% of people only experience mild symptoms, and we're crashing the economy for this? The statistics aren't any more extreme than many other illnesses we've had over time, and we're crashing the economy for this? It doesn't make sense until you consider that there are other factors besides just the virus at play.
Wolfgang Wodard - Explaining how the statistics are being manipulated to cause panic
The media, and society at large is inundating you with terrifying information about the Coronavirus. But if it's not as bad as we originally thought, then why? We don't freak out about every illness that comes along, and we've certainly never in the history of civilization had over 1/3 of the global population locked down under mandatory quarantine.
And then there's the debate about where the virus came from. We believe it came from a meat market in China, under unsanitary conditions. The science behind a coronavirus making the leap from one species to another is well-established and researched, and it is a very likely scenario. There are also conspiracy theories that state that China released it on its people intentionally, or even that the US military released it in China. Again, we will never know exactly where this Coronavirus came from. It may be natural, it may be man made, and there are very plausible paths for both. I don't know what to believe myself. So here I ask you to make your own judgement based on likelihood.
What we do know though is that the state of the world this virus has been unleashed on has played a major factor in its spread. In 1950 the global population was 2.5 billion, and that has exploded to almost 8 billion people in 2020. As a matter of fact, population growth has been exponential since about the time of the Industrial Revolution.
With all these people on the planet there are sure to be many disagreements and conflicts, and there indeed have been. As a matter of fact, 2019 saw global protests on an unprecedented scale, in Hong Kong, France, Syria, and many other countries. Citizens have literally been fighting police and military with rocks, clubs, arrows, and molotov cocktails.
Did you know that? Despite my seeing headlines and pictures every day of the riots in Hong Kong, I have been shocked to learn that multiple of my close friends, intelligent and aware people, had no knowledge whatsoever of the protests even existing. But that is far from a coincidence; rather, it is quite by design.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Billionaires and Coincidences
Another major talking point over the last 5 to 10 years has been the "1%" - the handful of super-rich individuals who posess and control the vast majority of the Earth's wealth and resources. Where it used to just be a numerical term, "Billionaire" is now a dirty word, and one of the nastiest. We all hate billionaires. They are evil, and profit off the exploitation of the rest of the world.
The "Illuminati" we call them, in pursuit of a "New World Order." Crazy stuff, right? Mysterious symbols and people in black robes doing nefarious things in secret meetings, and running the world from behind the scenes. We love the Illuminati, it's a huge pop culture thing now. The subject of endless speculation, they are made fun of in the media, movies, and now Taco Bell commercials. It's so far fetched it could never really be true. And the fact that you think that is by design as well.
So, we don't know where the Coronavirus came from, but it's certainly here, and there are lot of other things unfolding in the world around it. Many different current events from all different places and fields of study. Some of it seems a little too coincidental. It is certainly very coincidental that this economically destructive Coronavirus entered the world right as there were global uprisings, protests in the street, and a growing public hatred for billionaires.
Well, here are a few other coincidences: Hundreds of CEOs of major companies stepped down from their positions in recent months. Multiple US Senators sold stock right before the market crashed. Even the boss of the New York Stock Exchange sold his own stock right before the crash. Did they know something they weren't telling us?
Here's another coincidence. In 2010, The Rockefeller Foundation published a selection of future-predicting scenarios in the name of "exploring the ways that technology and development could co-evolve." One of these four scenarios, entitled "Lock Step," eerily predicts a global viral pandemic and the resulting hypothetical consequences, which almost exactly mirrors the COVID-19 pandemic we are in the midst of today.
Also coincidental: The first case of COVID-19 was diagnosed in China on November 17th, 2019. Literally one month earlier, The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in partnership with the World Economic Forum and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation hosted Event 201, a high-level pandemic exercise on October 18, 2019, in New York, NY. In this exercise, they discuss the potential implications and consequences of a novel Coronavirus, including an economic crash, martial law, and of particular interest, the control of information. (You can view some published highlights here)
The World Economic Forum is comprised of the richest of the rich. The 1%. The Billionaires. CEO's, politicians, business owners, and many other powerful and influential figures. They meet regularly to discuss topics of global concern, and strongly control the dissemination of information. And of primary concern to many of them is maintaining their wealth and power in a rapidly-changing world.
And finally, here's one more coincidence: At the exact same time as the Event 201 exercise, The World Military Games was held in Wuhan, China, Oct 18-27, 2019. It was the largest military sports event ever to be held in China, with nearly 10,000 athletes from over 100 countries competing in 27 sports. Wuhan China was, as we now believe, the source of our current global COVID-19 outbreak.
Whether you think it is a "conspiracy" or not, that is all certainly coincidental, to say the least.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"Why didn't I hear about any of this?"
That's an excellent question, and one that likely has multiple answers. For starters, how much do you really pay attention? Where do you get your news from? Do you research things you hear or just accept them on hearsay? Critical thinking skills are paramount in making sense of the chaos unfolding all around us.
As I mentioned before, I can tell you that I personally know multiple people who had no clue whatsoever about the riots in Hong Kong last year. As you read this, you may be one of them. And it may seem like something that is happening far away, and "could never happen here." Or you may have been aware of it but just that it was happening. But please, consider for a moment: millions of average citizens risked their lives and safety in the streets of Hong Kong for months on end, fighting police and military, and transforming the city they lived in into a warzone. WHY? Why would people do something like that? Regardless of their motivations, that many people were banding together to fight for something they believed in. And that is worth considering.
It's not really your fault though that you may not catch wind of all this news. The "mainstream media" that you hear about all the time deliberately controls information - downplaying threats and overreacting to silly things - in order to make sure that you hear the version of the news that they want you to hear.
Did you know that only 6 corporations control 90% of the media In America? That number is reduced from 50 companies in the 80's. And literally all the news you see on TV, at the very least, is 100% owned and controlled by these companies. Lately, distrust is growing for cable news networks, and many people turn to their local hometown station for trusted news. The problem with that though is that your hometown station is probably owned by Sinclair Media, one of the most powerful broadcast networks in the country that you've never heard of.
Please watch this very brief video, illustrating the chokehold that Sinclair Media maintains over your nightly local news broadcast: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWLjYJ4BzvI
Of course, not every piece of news is pre-programmed but a lot is. The real news is out there, but sometimes you have to look a little deeper than the infographics on TV news. Even if information is being directed from the top down, the boots on the ground tend to be passionate people with a variety of interests and agendas, and they are still doing their best to do real journalism despite corporate oversight.
Think of those who are directing the information as steering an impossibly massive ship with a rudder. You can slowly adjust the course of direction, however it is slow to react. If you want to stop, you have to start thinking about stopping wayyy ahead of time. And similarly, once it gets underway, it is then influenced by an inertia all its own. Micro controls and adjustments aren't really possible.
Our society is this giant ship. There are 8 billion people on this earth - that is 8000 million. An incomprehensible number that grows rapidly every day. As civilization grows and advances, so does our medicine, our technology, our cultural norms. These are all natural processes that are necessary to manage an increasing number of societies all around the globe. And many of the advances we're making have exciting potential benefits for humanity, although as with all tools, they also inherently possess the potential for abuse.
Here are some other things happening in society right now, some you may be aware of and many you may not:
There is an interesting chicken or egg relationship between science fiction and real world science. Sci-fi writers are inspired by the real science of the day, then they apply their creativity to imagine what might be in the future. Young scientists encounter these fantastical ideas and think they are worth pursuing, and then set about to make them a reality, and the cycle continues.
Futuristic concepts are then preempted and introduced through the media to the conscious mind, as we include them in books, movies, TV, video games, and more. Eventually we start seeing headlines of these new technologies and developments happening in other places, usually Japan and China first due to their prevalence in the industrial and technological sectors of our global economy.
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Continue to Part 2

submitted by SquarePeg37 to conspiracy [link] [comments]

Non-obvious tips for newbro's

GTA Online just got a boost in new players due to the free giveaway at Epic Games, myself included.
After playing and doing some research online I decided to write this brief no-nonsense "tl;dr" list of tips, sadly not included in the game itself, for my friends. As it got larger and more thorough I decided to post it publicly - hope it helps!
(June 2020; PC version 1.50, mostly applies to console too)
 
The order of tips is simple to technical, meaning arguably the most important stuff is near the end.
  1. Gameplay
  2. Equipment
  3. Business
  4. Settings
  5. Troubleshooting
 
[ 1. Gameplay ]
 
[ 2. Equipment]
 
[ 3. Business ]
Once you have competent equipment, consider investing your cash into a (single) Business to earn more cash later. Note that most of my info on this comes from other guides:
 
[ 4. Settings ]
First the important stuff:
The default keybinds are poor. Here are my recommended changes:
 
The "Online" > "Options" menu:
 
[ 5. Troubleshooting ]
This section is only useful if the game is malfunctioning somehow (which sadly is very common):
 
Lastly, and I had nowhere else to put this: You can currently get a free million and Pete's Arcade using an Amazon/Twitch Prime temporary offer. NOTE that it's set up so that although you can get the whole thing for free, it comes with automatic renewal for the subscription at 3 bucks a month. You can get rid of this either on the Twitch page or by contacting Amazon (chat) support.
Edit: Fill the arcade with the free games to get $3600 per "day" (48 mins). Optionally add the 90k game in the empty slots to raise this to the $5000 max (1400 more). You'll recoup the investment in: 90/1.4=64 "days" or 51.42 real-time hours.
 
P.S. If any veteran players have more tips to share in the comments I'd appreciate it.
submitted by Gessie00 to gtaonline [link] [comments]

OBLIGATORY FILLER MATERIAL – Just take a hard left at Daeseong-dong…9

Continuing...
“I say that you’re way the fuck out of line, Chuckles. Are you an educated, experienced, fully licensed and internationally renowned master blaster?” I asked.
“No, but…” he tried to continue.
“But nothing, Scooter.” I said, “What, other than your insane xenophobia and nationalism, causes you to come to such unfounded, not to say stupid, conclusions?”
He looked down at the deck. Evidently, he was not used to being challenged in such a manner. He realized he walked face-first into a metaphorical wood chipper.
“I’m waiting for your answer, pally.” I continued.
Still nothing. He was either deep in thought or ill at ease from newly soggy undergarments.
“Want to know why I chose what I did? Fine, meet back here in 15 damn minutes.”
He looks at me with a most perplexed, and ignorant, look on his face.
“Dax, Cliff? I need you.” I say.
We go back to the weapons locker and I explain my idea.
“Let’s load a case of typical, TYPICAL Chinese-made dynamite. Then let’s load a case of American C-4. Be very careful with that leaky Chinese shit. Wait one. I’ll do it if you want and you can handle the C-4.” I say.
“Ah, Rock; yeah. We’d appreciate it. You being the Pro from Dover, after all.” Cliff agrees.
“No worries”, I say, “I got this. You make me up a nice, tightly packed case of C-4. For demonstration purposes.”
I find a near-empty case of dynamite and begin to judiciously fill the thing with random samples of shitty and leaky Chinese manufactured and Korean not-too-well-cared-for dynamite.
This stuff was so incredibly shitty and poorly manufactured that even when leaking and nasty, it was nowhere near as dangerous as its Western counterpart. It was loaded with so much and many interstitials, like sawdust, diatomaceous earth, literal horseshit, and shredded newspaper, the nitro denatured itself to some degree as it oozed out.
Plus, in the non-climate controlled weapons locker; the high humidity, salt air, and poor circulation from the small open grate facing the sea, the nitro had desensitized somewhat and evaporated. It left only sticky, thin, fly-ridden films rather than the usual ‘waiting for a good reason to explode’ puddles.
It was in no way as twitchy as that locker back in Nevada. Oh, but be assured, it was still a shit show.
If I really wanted to, I could blow myself, this boat and all occupants into the next dimension rather easily, but it was nothing like that old locker back in that disused Nevada mine. I still needed to be scrupulously careful as there could potentially be puddles of the pale yellow, viscous liquid explody stuff, instead of the thin films I was mostly finding.
Either way, it required caution and judiciousness.
Nitro’s twitchy as fuck and the last thing I need is a dropped nail, blasting cap, or hunk of the rotten box falling into an errant nitro wet patch…
Extra attention was exercised.
Dax and Cliff are halfway through, and I’m still picking through the leaky, smelly bundles.
“Next time”, I mused to myself, “I‘m writing in a ‘Handling fucked-up explosives”-clause in my contract. No matter how much I’m being paid for this, it ain’t enough…”
We find a couple of expendable, dry-rotted ‘life preserver’ floaty-rings, upon which we secure both cases of explosives. They’re tethered with a rope and primed with a number of blasting caps.
I let the head local Korean crank examine both to ensure that I’m not trying to pull a fast one.
He did not notice the 3-pound bag of Tannerite (an impact-actuated explosive) I snuck in the middle of the box of Chinese TNT.
“Now. Satisfied that they’re equal?” I asked. “Nothing fishy here. Just dynamite in bundles, with caps. Then, over here, C-4 blocks with cap. OK?”
He was satisfied; but only after letting a couple of the shiny suit squad check as well.
“Well”, I smirked,” So much for your ‘covert observation’, asshole.” This guy was DPRK secret service or equivalent.
“Holy cold-pack cheese-food product fuck”, I cogitate, “They are so goddamned suspicious”.
I ask Dax to go over to the pilothouse and borrow the mauled AK-47 I saw hanging on the bulkhead there. They keep it for run-ins with cranky sharks, walruses, and lovesick blue-footed boobies evidently.
“OK, here’s what we’ll do. We’ll float each out, and I‘ll trail with demolition wire. Once we’re a few hundred meters out, you can press the big, shiny, green button and detonate your dynamite. I even used 6 blasting caps, to give each bundle its own. You saw that. We green?” I ask.
He was, although suspicious of what I had in mind. He agreed although he refused to use my terminology, the stodgy prick.
So float away the dynamite case we did.
The case of Chinese dynamite floated out and away from the boat, leaving an oily slick in its wake. As it got to around 200-225 meters or so, I requested a rendition of the Korean version of the Safety Dance, as it was just too fucking hilarious to watch.
Once completed, I handed Doubting Korean Thomas the detonator.
“Your turn, Tweedles”, I said, “Hit the button to spark off your “much-better-than-the-West’s” Oriental dynamite.”
He grabbed the detonator, gnashed a tooth in my direction, and mashed down on the big, shiny, green button with a vengeance.
PFftt! PAH-foof! fuff
There was a cheery little pop, a puff of acrid smoke, and not much else.
Let it be said from the onset that I just selected examples of the Oriental manufactured dynamite at random. I didn’t look for the worst or leakiest. Though truthfully I really didn’t have much too choice in the matter.
“You! You swindled me! You knew the dynamite wouldn’t explode! Somehow you knew it!!” he swore in my general direction.
“Try it again”, I said after retrieving the detonator and doing a quick re-wire to another bank of blasting caps.
Gumeong-e bul!” [“Fire in the hole!”].
MASH goes the big, shiny, green button anew.
Pfffft!” *Pop. Poooof! Piffle. Blerp.
Nothing but a cute little pop, a poof, and a few acrid puffs of smoke.
He was crestfallen.
He had taken on the Motherfucking Pro from Dover in a necessarily explosive subject, with inevitably disastrous results.
I asked if anyone here was weapons trained. A couple of Coasties raised their hands.
“And you are? “ I asked the closest one.
“Lt. P'an Tae-Hyun, Sir”, as he snaps a snappy salute.
“Groovy.”, I reply and retrieve the AK from Dax.
“Can you squeeze off a couple of shots and hit that floating box of dynamite?” I asked.
“Yes, sir!” he replied, smiling.
“OK then”, I replied and turned to the crowd.
“Dynamite is usually pretty stable stuff and won’t detonate without a blasting cap or impulse source. A bullet will most certainly not detonate it. However, I’ve stuck in 3 pounds, imperial, of Tannerite, which is a type of binary explosive used for targeting. Tannerite will most definitely and energetically explode when impacted by a high-velocity bullet. I think we can agree that an AK-47 round is high-velocity?” I asked.
There were nods and a buzz of general agreement.
“Now, there’s the better part of a case of unexploded dynamite out there. That’s what we in the business call very, very fucking dangerous. Now those three pounds of Tannerite should vaporize everything within a 10-meter radius if it detonates as designed. Agreed?” I asked.
Again, there were nods and a buzz of general agreement.
“Lieutenant P'an?” I asked, “At your discretion. Fire at will. Or the dynamite case, as it were.”
He nodded. He walked over to the furthest point on the stern, checked to see everyone was back and out of harm’s way, as he was a consummate professional. He futzed around with the old AK for a bit and took a shot.
It was low and outside.
“Ball one”, I snickered.
“Sights are off. Not any problems.” He remarked.
The next round found its mark. The Tannerite exploded adeptly.
It threw sticks of unexploded Chinese dynamite over a 20-meter radius. They each sank into the briny deep leaving only an oily spot to mark their entry and eventual watery grave.
The top of the case of dynamite was blown off, but the floaty ring remained. We reeled it back in to find a few more scorched, but unexploded, sticks of fine Oriental manufacture explosive on the bottom of the case.
These were motherfuckingly dangerous. Cantankerous dynamite has no place on a ship.
I remarked, however, that this would be no problem. Dax and Cliff brought up the case of C-4, which I had wired with one single blasting cap and booster.
We had Korean Doubting Thomas and his shiny suit buddies give it the once over to ensure I wasn’t trying to pull a fast one.
He agreed, it was nothing but C-4 as advertised.
One of the more expendable Coasties jumped down on the stern transom-rack which is just above the waterline on the back of the boat. He wired the two rings together and set them adrift, tethered by a good nylon rope with my nasty, silky demolition wires trailing.
Dax was working the rope and I was handling the spool of demolition wire. I had a good 350 meters of the stuff on the spool and wasn’t about to return a single centimeter.
Old habits and all.
As they floated away, Mr. Kwan asked if we’d like a bit of refreshment, as, gosh, it sure was dusty out here today.
Of course, we agreed in unison.
Good old Mr. Kwan.
So, we’re unspooling our lines slowly, drinking our end of the day refreshers, smoking cigars, and watching our Oriental colleagues getting antsier every minute.
I knew what a case of C-4 was going to do when detonated. It would be one hell of a show.
I was so confident with my design I had Lt. P’ay return the AK to the pilothouse. Wouldn’t work here anyways if the C-4 failed to detonate.
But that’s not going to happen.
Dr. Pro from Dover Rocknocker has spoken.
Finally, I’m almost out of demolition wire, and Dax has tied off the tether.
I motion over to Herr Doubting Thomas and hand him the detonator.
“For ye of little faith”, I smiled, recalling the entreaty that even Satan quotes the Bible for his own nefarious uses.
But first, an encore of the Korean Safety Dance. They're guaranteed to raise a smile.
I look to the character fumbling with the detonator.
“At your convenience, good sir”, I say, dripping insincerity.
Gumeong-e bul!” [“Fire in the hole!”]. Mash goes the big, shiny, green button.
KA-MOTHERING-FUCKINGLY-HUGE-BOOM!
Even over 300 meters away, every one of us not only saw but felt that shock wave. It was like a solid Savate kick to the chest. The boat even rocked a bit in appreciation.
I smile, retrieved the detonator, safe it, and reply: “And that is the singular reason why I used good old American manufacture C-4 as a sonic seismic source rather than shitty, leaky Oriental dynamite. Any further questions?”
He shook his head in agreement, bowed slightly in my direction, slunk away, and that was the very last we ever saw of Mr. Korean Doubting Thomas.
The Captain saw and felt the detonation. He put the boat in park, actually, he handed it over to the sub-pilot for station keeping and came back to the fantail.
He wanted to know if we were now officially finished with our project.
We maintained that we were and it had come off very, very successfully; in no small degree because of his boat handling abilities.
He came over to me and shanghaied one of the translators.
“Doctor Stone?” he asked.
“Hrmph. Close enough.” I smiled.
“May I be first to congratulate your team. In eight sorties, you and your teams are the first to fulfill mission parameters. I am pleased to say that this will go on all our permanent records. It will mean bonuses for all present. I salute you.” And does with a naval flourish.
“No shit? Well, thanks, Cap”, I reply, “But I’m just the den mother for this special education class. Without them, and all their hard work, it’d never have happened.”
“I knew you would say this”, he smiled, “You are leader of men. We see that. You are teacher, but also not afraid to work. You should do this more often. Use your education and experience to train and teach others.” He says, shaking my hand.
Now it’s time for me to wonder. Did he hear of my offer back home? I don’t think he did, I’ve been playing those cards very close to the vest, as it were. I am now officially confused and bebothered.
But, since I don’t believe in anything, much less coincidence, I’m going to chalk it up to happenstance and just gratefully consider the source.
He asks that we wait here and he’ll return forthwith.
“On a boat this size, there are not too many places we can sneak off to…” I chuckle.
He returns with a very, very old bottle of something quite unidentifiable since it appears to be lacking a label. He yells something in official Korean and suddenly, a tray with little, itty-bitty demitasse-style glasses appear along with some smoked fish, I think, nibbles of some kind.
He pours a dram for all present. No one dares take as much as a preemptory sniff until he’s finished with the ceremony.
Everyone thusly charged, he begins a toast.
“Shoo-buddy”, I think, “I’ve been down this road before.”
It was quick, succinct, brief, and laudatory.
According to him, we had ‘hung the moon’.
I liked this style of toasting. Left more time to drink and for camaraderie.
The project thus finished, as we were running out of potables, especially freshwater, victuals, and toilet paper; we were headed back to base. That is, back to the hotel to see what our comrades who chose to stay onshore had developed.
But, that was going to be for another day. First, we needed to chug our way back to port, both literally and figuratively.
Ahem.
Before which, though, there were some housekeeping and paperwork chores. Dax, Cliff, and I did a quick reconnaissance of the explosives locker and created a ‘used’ manifest; which all three of us signed.
They may be officious, they may be obtrusive, but damn, they certainly love their goddamned paperwork over here.
We gave copies to the head shiny suit, one for the Captain, and we retained copies for our records. Along with notes that we expended two rounds from the pilothouse AK, as we were trying to out-officious these officious paper-pushers.
We made certain the keys were returned and logged in the proper logbooks and the explosives locker was locked securely, solidly, and soundly. Before which, we policed up the weapons locker and actually offered to the gods of the briny deep, quite the quantity of unsafe, leaky dynamite, and other ordinance that was more a disaster waiting to happen rather than inventory.
Seawater would neutralize the nasties and in the case of anything metallic, it’d be gone within a fortnight. and the phosphates might provide some nice fertilizer for some lucky passing Cnidarians. We were in water of near 45 fathoms. This stuff would never hurt another living thing.
The Captain was very pleased that we had taken that task upon ourselves. He wasn’t allowed to do anything about what was in the locker, but he was responsible for it and keeping the wrong people out of it. I commented that was a fairly stupid way of handling things, and he mentioned that he’d appreciate it if I made an official note of it to the powers that be once we go feet-dry, i.e., get back to shore.
I assured him we most certainly would.
From then on, all we had to do was putt-putt our way back to port.
It was going to take some hours and we’d end up berthing during the wee hours. This would not be a problem as our bus and driver would be waiting for us no matter what the time. He would briskly and without fanfare, return us to our hotel.
That we were actually looking forward to bunking back in the old hotel sort of gave one an idea of the Spartan arrangements we had endured for the last three days.
Most of the Westerners groused and complained in a humorous manner. Hell, it was only three bloody days. Some of our Oriental friends were so totally aghast they vowed to lodge formal complaints once they returned to dry land.
Landlubbers.
Odd that once we hit the beach, they all scattered to the four winds and not a single letter nor either a peep of protest was ever forthcoming.
Yes, this is an intensely weird place.
We wandered down the gangplank, cigars a-fume, and drinks recently and for one last time, refreshed by Mr. Kwan. The shiny suit squad was supervising the offloaded of the seismic data we had collected and had seen it soundly sealed and concealed in the very living bowels of the bus. It was to return with us to the hotel, where we’d demand a receipt. Then it would be off to the ‘Technological Center” on Scientific Street for processing.
They assured us that they’d handle that themselves. Evidently we were good enough to acquire the data, but not good enough to see the finished product.
Ack, Volna, and Ivan chuckled.
“OK, you pirates. What did you do?” I asked
“They can try with all their might. But without the decryption key, they’ll spend years processing encoded compressed nonsense.” They snickered. “We did offer to come and help set up the decryption for the decompression of the raw data, but they said they could handle it themselves. Oh, well. We tried. Seriously, we did.” Ack and Volna snickered.
“Well, keep it handy in case they come to their senses before we get out of here,” I said.
“Always our intention, Herr Denmother”, Volna chuckles.
“Oh, you heard that?” I snickered quietly.
Back at the hotel, the majority of us sent our sea-gear to our rooms via the on-site laundry. That being settled, the majority of us retired to the catacombs of the basement.
We needed strong drink, decent, non-tinned food, and seats that didn’t slop around every time you sat down.
Well, with the acquisition of our sea legs, two out of three wasn’t bad.
Since the hour was much too late, I decide that tomorrow, well, later today, would be a day of R&R for everyone.
Moreover, I was informed that tomorrow would be the “Day of the Sun” celebration, the insanely earnest celebration birth anniversary of Kim Il-sung, founder and Eternal President of North Korea. It’s supposed to be some sort of big, hairy nationwide deal. But aside from a couple of small posters, we heard little and knew less about the holiday and its celebration.
Everyone’s being even more uncharacteristically low key. It’s odd like there’s something weird going on here.
“What? Something weird and covert and sneaky going on in Best Korea? Pshaw, you old fart. You’re letting the paranoids get to you!”, I mused to myself.
This place will do that to you after a while.
I asked the front desk to place a note that made the rest of today a day of R&R in everyone’s mailbox. After another cigar, some decent prawn stir-fry, and a couple-twelve really stiff drinks, we were all ready to invade the land of Nod for a few hours.
I went downstairs for a drink, a nosh, and a smoke. I ran out of NK won as we tend to use them in Western Expat high-stakes poker games, so I needed to trade some of my weird Middle Eastern currency for weird Best Korea currency.
I was used to the 900:1 won:US dollar (equivalent) trade-off, but after cashing in the equivalent of US$500 in Middle Eastern dinero, I walked off with 650,000 won, not 450,000.
“Pardon me, Ms. Cashier”, I said to the nice little local woman behind the bird-cage security wires, “I do think you gave me too much.”
She took my stack, re-counted it, and proclaimed it correct.
“I thought the exchange rate was 900 to the dollar?” I asked.
“No”, she remarked, “Now 1,336.”
“Any idea what’s causing the fluctuations?” I asked.
She just smiled and shook her head ‘no’. I smiled back and tipped her 50 UAE dirhams for the information.
“Weird. Now what?” I mused.
Little did I know…
The next morning dawned dim and early as there some sort of something going on outside.
Oh, yes, it was ‘The Day of the Sun’ celebration. I discovered it was is an annual public holiday in North Korea celebrating the birth anniversary of Kim Il-sung, founder, and Eternal President and local Poobah-in-Charge of North Korea. It is the most important national holiday in the country, and is considered to be the North Korean pseudo-secular equivalent of Christmas.
“Well,” I thought to myself, “I picked a damn good day to call for an R&R break.”
Then I found out, why no one told us about any of this is still unknown, that the next two days after the holiday would also be considered a holiday.
Come to find out, there are all sorts of intrusive, inconvenient, and wholly unnecessary nonsense that accompany these high holy days here in Best Korea. There are exhibitions, fireworks, song and dance events, athletics competitions, idea seminars: “Think about it!”, and visits to places connected with Kim Il-sung's life, including his birthplace in Mangyongdae.
Shops close, the hotel televisions block any other ‘programming’ and show only ‘special’ movies. Either ridiculously fake documentaries on the life of the also ever so ronrey Kim Il-sung or movies he especially enjoyed. People parade to his statue on Mansu Hill to deposit flowers; later in the day, it resembled a pollinated glacier.
There’s general obviously forced elation, all of which is extraordinarily strained and appears fake. People are trucked by the groaning busload to the Kumsusan Palace of the Sun where the dead maniac lies in state.
“Fuck this”, I said in the exact spirit of international amity, “I’m going to the bar.”
I go downstairs to the basement bar, and even though it’s a high holy day, it’s open early. It didn’t used to be open until the afternoon, but since we’ve arrived, they have adjusted their hours for us.
They have also doubled their daily receipts. So they’ve got that going for them, which is nice.
One of my favorite barkeeps was station keeping that morning. I greeted him in the usual style and expressed to Mr. Ho Gun the best holiday wishes.
“Hi! Ho!”, I said, “Annyeonghaseyo”, which comes out ‘Annie young eez-yo!’ in my Baja Canuckian dialect.
Mr. Ho laughs at my attempt at Korean, but he does appreciate the effort.
“Doctor Rock”, he says, “Dawn greetings. You will drink what?”
Nice and direct, I like that.
“Ye’ ken Greenland Coffee, me ol’ mucker?” I asked in a swirl of different dizzying dialects.
Koran confounds me, so I thought I’d return the favor.
“No, but I’m sure it’s coffee with some of your usual high-proof liquors, correct?” he smiles as I hand him a nice, oily Oscuro cigar.
“For Best Most Happy Returns: Day of the Sun”, I said, waggling the stogie, as I hand it over.
“However, you are correct. Normally, ‘authentic’ Greenland Coffee is a paltry 1/3rd ounce each of Whiskey, Kahlua, and Grand Marnier with excess coffee. Well, I don’t cotton to those liquors or measures. So my Greenland Coffee recipe, really from Greenland, by the way, is Siku Vodka, or any other high-octane vodka, as long as it’s premium. Then Immiak, which is Greenland’s version of Jagermeister, so let’s just go with Jager. Then finish it off with a shot of Tia Maria or Kahlua, if available. Oh, yes, then hot coffee. Silly me, almost forgot…” I conclude.
“And measures?” Mr. Ho asked.
“Whatever fills the cup”, I replied, in a bastardization of an old Russian toast.
“OK, how about a 35 mils (~1 ounce) stiff shot each booze, then hot coffee to fill your mug? With a chilled vodka chaser, as per usual?” He asks.
“Make it so, Mr. Ho,” I say. “No whipped cream or crème liqueurs, please. I’m lactose intolerant, and, well, no one wants to hear that…”
He laughs and whips together a very nice morning sunriser.
It’s a real day off.
In a very, very weird land.
It’s Festival outside and I stayed up most of the night calling people back in the world, creating and updating dossiers, doing explosives-tracking paperwork, worrying over logistics, and how and when the fuck we’re going to eventually get out of here.
Fuck it, double front. I’m doing my ‘people watch’, perched high on Mahogany Ridge. I’m taking, for the first time since, hell, I left the Middle East, some real downtime.
I figured I deserved it.
I was the only one at the bar, but after a short time, there were festival-goers who infiltrated down into the hotel's subterranean catacombs. They didn’t know of the bar’s recently expanded hours and when they saw me sitting high up on Mahogany Ridge, smoking my ubiquitous cigar, they rejoiced.
Obligatory Festival and alcohol! Better than beer and power tools.
In the Baja Canada time-honored tradition, I have a pile of the local currency sitting on the bar. At the new exchange rate of 1,386 won to the dollar, I’m making out like a bandit.
Drinks here are cheap, really cheap, to begin with. With this fluctuation in exchange rates, which I figured reflected the holiday, I was flush. In the chips. Well-heeled. I've got a lot of what it takes to get along.
So, I was feeling magnanimous. I was tipping people very well.
“Paper?” one local asked.
“Sure. How much for a week-old English version of the Daily Worker’s Manifest and Pork Belly Futures Digest? 100 won? Here’s 1,000. Keep the change.”
Not wanting to become over-caffeinated, I switched from Greenland Coffees after a couple to my usual potato juice and citrus concoction. Each one came in a tall, frosted gimlet glass, a very nice touch, and was expertly made my Mr. Ho after I showed him once when we first arrived.
Each one, with the current exchange rate, was about 500 won; an exorbitant sum for any local. It was about US$0.40 for me. I bought several for people who bellied up to the bar and tried to engage me in conversation.
I was used to handing out business cards, hell, one never knew where contacts could lead; and not receiving one in return.
Today, I collected four new business cards; two from various European ex-pats, and two from locals.
I guess Festival! time brings out the best and least paranoid in people.
It’s only 1000 hours in the AM and people here are already seriously lubricated.
This will be a fun few days.
I decided to get a rather tall drink in one of my 100-ounce Kum-n-Go travel cups. With all the hoo-ha going on around here, I haven’t seen a handler, translator, or guide since we got off the boat. I decide with all the shenanigans and goings-on around the place on this festival day, no one would give me nor my wardrobe a second look if I were to venture outdoors for a walkabout.
Besides, we’re on a bloody island. It’s not like I can go too damned far.
So, quicker than a bunny fucks, I get my drink, fire up a cigar, and walk around the lobby of the hotel. There are the usual comings and goings of tourists, local workers, the security forces, and all that allied tat.
I wait until a tour bus pulls up and all eyes are somewhere besides me.
Pfft! And I’m standing outside the hotel, looking at all the sights.
Which, truth be told, weren’t much.
Yanggak Island is a slovenly-manicured island with shrubberies, tracks, trails, and assorted support buildings. The river is basically hidden behind stunted shrubs and nevergreens, and the remains of the defunct golf course. There’s a stadium on the island, which was thronging with festival-goers today. I don’t know what sport, if any, they play there, and didn’t care enough to ask anyone.
There was a cinema hall, which was currently empty and looking in need of some dire repair. There’s some sort of Chinese health complex in the process of being built or torn down, it was hard to tell which. Needless to say, the scenery paled almost immediately.
I did, after a concerted effort, find a small platform that overlooked the Taedong River. It was a very nice little observation platform with a couple of new-Tudor-esque electrical replica gas lights and two concrete benches where a weary traveler could sit and just watch the river.
So I did.
I was interested in the fish of the river, and wondered if any of the locals did any fishing; or if it was forbidden, as are so many ‘proletariat’ activities are in town.
I did see a few locals, huddled out of plain sight, down by the shores of the river fishing with long, 10 meter, reel-less poles. In Britain, they would call this type of fishing ‘noodling’.
I didn’t see them catch anything, but in the bar later, I spoke with a local who told me that they catch various species of fish here. These include Asian Aroana, Blue Guppy, Catfish, Crab, Eel, Halibut, Hucho Perryi, Octopus, Orange Guppy, Pacific Flying Squid, Rainbow Trout, Salmon, and Tuna.
I’m not saying my informant was lying or embroidering the tale, but from the nasty condition of the river, I think Coney Island Whitefish, Cotton River Horse, Dumpster Trout, and Bugle-Mouthed Salmon would be the more common species.
I had enough perambulation and even though I wasn’t given the least look, I felt a bit uncomfortable out here. That unfiltered sun and equally unfiltered air. After that, I wandered back to the hotel and went to enter to go to my room.
“HALT! Who goes there?” some door guard yelled at me.
“An American tourista who was out on a walk”, I replied.
“Impossible!”, he replied, “Tourists are not allowed out without their guides.”
“Look, Herr Mac”, I said, “I’m Dr. Rocknocker, and I am an invited Western Petroleum Scientist with the UN special-invited group here to evaluate the country’s oil and gas potential.”
“You are not allowed.” He replied loudly.
“My good man”, I replied, equally loudly, "Not allowed? Not allowed? I’m a geologist, I’m allowed everywhere.”
With that, I grab the handle of the ornate door, take a slurp out of my drink, and sally forth into the hotel.
Of course, he goes non-linear. He follows me and is making all sorts of bad noise. He is almost literally dancing around me, pointing, and exclaiming that I’m not allowed.
Then, he made a bit of a mistake.
He grabbed my arm.
Really, really poor career move.
I switched my drink to my left hand and executed a pretty spiffy opposite-side wrist grab on the noisy little nerf herder.
He was so shocked by this turn of events, he went slightly white and was rendered mute for a short time.
I frog marched the little irritant up to the front desk and asked the head clerk there to explain to my captive audience who I was and why I was here.
The clerk smiled and gave the character whom I was dragging around a quick background on the guy who was currently holding him captive. When I heard “닥터 락 노커” [dagteo lag nokeo, “Dr. Rocknocker”], I dropped this guy’s hand and just took a few steps back.
After a minute or two, he comes over, very, very abashed. He apologizes as he wasn’t told that any Americans were allowed outside the hotel.
I told him ‘No problem’, as I really didn’t have any special permission and didn’t want to get the guy into any trouble. I offered him a cigar, which he refused, but he readily accepted the half-pack of Sobranie pastel cigarettes I had in the pocket of my Hawaiian shirt.
I decided from that point to just stay inside the hotel to smoke, drink, and avoid any further Imperial entanglements.
I wandered on down to the casino because I was bored and it was unusually quiet. Too hepped-up to sleep, too tired to work, it was that odd interarea between “should I be giving a fuck” and “who the fuck cares?”
Leaving the basement, I wandered around the ground floor, just taking in the sights, and looking at the “Festival Specials” at the hotel shops.
I found an empty, unlocked conference room that looked inviting. About two dozen chairs, a large wooden table, TV monitors, and a southern view of the city from slightly above ground level.
I walked in like I owned the place, as it is always monumentally easier to get forgiveness than permission, sat down at the head of the table, propped my feet up, found an ashtray, and began playing with the remote to see what was available.
Evidently, these rooms were available for rent by various factions, cadres, and other sorts of like-minded individuals. However, whoever was here last forgot to re-set the filters on the satellite television.
There was real the BBC, real-time. There was German TV, Russian TV, Japanese TV, and even some American TV; all the best of the absolutely prohibited hit parade.
I shut it down and left immediately. I went to find my comrades. They simply had to see this.
I located Dax first, as he was losing won at a rapid rate down at the basement casino. He said he’d spread the word to any of the team members down in the tunnels and we’d meet at Conference Room #1.
I had taken the precaution before leaving to move the “Occupied/Unoccupied” placard to indicate it was in use and that if you hadn’t reserved the room, you’d do best to stay the fuck out.
I waited the obligatory 20 minutes for the elevator and went up to ‘our’ floor.
I knocked on all the doors where I knew they were occupied by our occupants. I found a few of our team and informed them that if they were so inclined, there would be an unannounced, impromptu, and wholly illicit meeting down in Conference room number 1; complete with refreshments and real, uncensored television. They all agreed and said they’d rouse the rest of our team on the floor.
I was feeling so brazen, that when I went down to the ground floor, I stopped at the front desk and ordered lunch and drinks for my team in Conference Room #1.
“Oh, sir”, the desk clerk responded, “We don’t have any reservations today for Conference Room #1.”
“Well”, I replied, “We are in there and if it wasn’t reserved, how would that have happened? The room would have been marked as unavailable, which it clearly was not; as it was open and available and we are now occupying it. Therefore, it wasn’t marked unavailable so it must have been available; not unavailable as you postulate. It’s almost a simple example of the single equation theory of universal containment. So we are meeting there now and requiring refreshments. It’s simply a logical progression of the facts of the matter.”
“You are, of course, correct”, she immediately responded, distracted by all the Festival goings-on in the hotel, “Now, you said you’d like to order 4 dozen assorted meat and cheese sandwiches, two cases of beer, and a mixed case of bottled liquor?”
“Yes”, I replied, “You see, it’s only going to be a brief meeting. I’ll also need ice, carbonated and non-carbonated mixers, sliced citrus fruit, and an on-call bartender if you have one available.”
“Oh, yes sir,”, she replied, “That will be immediately arranged. Anything else?”
“Yes”, I replied, “I’ll need about a dozen ashtrays, of the larger variety. Also, I am going to leave explicit instructions with you to disseminate to hotel staff that we are not to be disturbed. This is a very high-level meeting of the scientists of the IUPG. We will be discussing, umm, ‘sensitive information’”.
I used the international ‘don’t-even-think-of-bothering-us’ buzzword to let her know were being very serious indeed.
“Oh, yes sir”, she stiffened.
“Marvelous”, I said and slipped her 1000 won for her troubles. All sighs of nervousness instantly disappeared.
“Excellent. Excellent service.”, I said, rubbing both hands together most Mr. Burnsly.
I go over to the conference room and see that our order has begun to already arrive. Have to hand it to them, you call for room service and you get room service. Especially if you’re well known around the hotel to be free with imported cigars, pastel cigarettes, and lavish tips.
One by one, my teammates filtered in. There was everyone from out earlier pleasure cruise, and most of the force that remained back in the hotel to prepare the paperwork for our ground assault.
Cigars, cigarettes, and pipes were lit. Sandwiches consumed and drinks were downed. After everyone had a chance to see their home-town, or at least home-county, version of the news, I decided that it would indeed be a good time to have a bit of a meeting. It was going nuts outside with the Festival, and as long as we were in here, we were being left alone.
After the obligatory facilities break, I returned from a 40-minute round trip to my room to get a couple of my field notebooks. I wanted a record of the proceedings, no matter how spur-of-the-moment.
When I returned, I thought the room looked a bit spare. I did a quick headcount and I noted we were missing someone. I glanced through my notes and saw that our Bulgarian geomechanic, Dr. Iskren Dragomirov Dinev, or ‘Iskren’ was not present.
“Hey, guys”, I asked aloud, “Anyone seen Iskren lately?”
There was a brief conclave and the answer was a solid negative.
I called the front desk and got his room number. I asked them to ring his room for me. His room phone rang and rang and rang, but no answer.
“Who last saw Iskren?” I asked the assembled crew.
The Finnish PT, Joon, recalls drinking with him at the casino the night before last. He seemed normally jovial as was normal for him.
“Anyone else? Or since?” I asked.
Again, the answer was negative.
“Something’s not right”, I thought, my rock sense was tingling. “Dax, Cliff, you’re with me.”
We all left, stopped by the front desk, and asked for medical assistance. We explained where we were going and the sudden absence of our Bulgarian friend. We expressed deep concern.
25 minutes later, Dax, Cliff, me, the hotel security chief, and hotel doctor were standing outside Iskren’s room. We had pounded on the door for a good 3 minutes. He certainly wasn’t in the shower.
No answer.
“Fuck this. Open it”, I said.
“Under whose authority?” the chief of hotel security asked.
“Mine. Dr. Rocknocker. I’m the team leader of the IUPG crew. Do it.” I said.
The door was laboriously opened, as both door bolt locks had to be breached. The room was dark, silent, and entirely unnerving. In the gloom, it appeared that there was a human form, unmoving, on the bed.
“I’m a rock Doctor. I think we need a medical doctor here.” I said to the hotel sawbones.
The hotel doctor went in without switching on the lights nor touching anything. He examined the mound on the bed. Apparently, it wasn’t a pile of dirty laundry.
“Was the occupant of this room a large Caucasian male, approximately 60-65 years of age?” He asked.
“Yes”, we all answered together.
“I’m afraid he’s dead.” The doctor replied.
Dax looked at Cliff who looked at me. In unison, all that was heard was a tripartite:
“Oh…fuck.”
To be continued...
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GTA VI Credible Leak ?

UPVOTE THIS POST SO IT DOES NOT GET BURIED ... *** FOLLOW ME TO GET MORE INFORMATION IN THE FUTURE.
UPDATED WITH TRACKLIST AND RADIO STATIONS
here is my ID badge that i use to get in and out of work. ( Name and picture is blurred for my protection.) date 2019-2020.
https://imgur.com/a/eenWmAR
Everyone has been waiting, a credible leak for Grand Theft Auto 6. I will not be stating my name or anything, this is a personal throwaway account, But I do work at Rockstar Games. This next addition to the title will be keeping the tradition of roman numerals, ( GTA VI ) but I will often refer to it as GTA 6, to make things easier.
be sure to read everything, as I have taken the risk and time to leak a lot of vital information.
First off I’d like to state that all previous leaks about GTA 6 is a hoax. All of the leaks regarding GTA 6 taking place in any other area than Vice City, is a hoax.
I will be breaking down the characters, storyline, and more.
Grand Theft Auto VI is designed to be the most developed video game in history, and redefine open sand box games, letting the player fully immerse in the world and storyline.
In Grand Theft Auto 6 the game will take place in Vice City, but the previous storyline leaks etc, is all fake. The plot is completely different,. The game will host 3 protagonists, one being a middle aged white man named Johnathon Brooks, but is often referred to as John. John is going thru a mid-life crisis, and lives on the returning area called Starfish Island. John essentially is a life long career criminal, and exposes the player to a new crime element, fraud. John was born in Carcer City, and moved to Vice City at age 17, after running away from his foster parents, not much is known about his previous life before then, except he was in a very poor family.
John got into the fraud game in the early 2000’s, and he is 38 in game. he earned his money thru many fraudulent activities like credit card fraud, bank fraud, and did a few small bank jobs, and laundered his money with his own car wash business. He lives in a $1.8m mansion that he bought with his illicit gains, and the FIB are on to him. He borrows money from the local gang in Little Haiti, where fraud is very prevalent, and he starts getting back into his older habits to pay off the gang. The FIB notices this, and he ends up doing dirty work for the FIB, in order to keep his freedom.
The second character is Samuel “Shotta” Stevens, who is a member of the Haitian gang. He is a black, Haitian based character with more character development, than Franklin from GTA 5. He is 26 in game. The game also focuses more on crime, and the gang element. The player will experience the brutal reality of the gang life in Vice City, in the slums of Little Haiti, from loan sharking and repossessing the unreliable clients, to brokering the sales, that being kilos of cocaine, for the South American Cartel. Samuel lives in a Section 8 apartment, in the Little Haiti Neighborhood with his grandmother, Amy.
Samuel just wants to move out of the hood, but loves the gang lifestyle, and this gets him caughtup in the FIB drama with John. The FIB cuts him a deal also, if he can snitch out his gang, which the player can choose to cooperate, or refuse. This will change the storyline of Samuel dramatically.
If you choose Option A: Snitch on the gang, You will snitch on the gang and work with John, who will show you the ropes of Fraud, and you both will defraud the bank of Schlongberg Sachs, commit multiple heists, and become a protege of John. Or of course you can choose, Option B: Refuse. Refusing will make Samuel a target of the FIB, and this causes him to gain more respect from his gang. The respect system from San Andreas is back, but new and improved. Samuel will expand his gang operations from Little Haiti, all the way to the Vice Keys, and beyond.
The Third Character is a man named Xavier Gonzalez. Xavier is a latino man born in Vice City, he is 40 years old, and a cocaine kingpin. He lives in Downtown Vice City in his lavish $1.5m penthouse. Xavier is friends with John from the beginning of the story. Xavier is apart of the story no matter what option you choose, providing cocaine to John to sell, OR, Providing cocaine to both John AND Samuel, to sell together, and to strengthen the gangs funds. The gang system is similar to Red Dead Redemption 2’s system, and also has elements of GTA San Andreas. Xavier is also tied in directly to the nightclub business as well, having stakes in the returning Malibu Club, now run by the Jimenez Family, a latino Mafia, who has ties directly to the South American Cartel.
Each Character has a different personality and lifestyle, and will be a exceptional experience for the player. Former characters from past GTA’s will be making appearances. Luis WILL be returning, being a manager of the Malibu Club, Stranger and Freaks missions are returning with a more in depth story for every one of them, and Michael De Santa and his wife, Amanda, will be returning also, living in a beach house, although their children will not make any appearances. The both do not play a VITAL part in the storyline, but will have stranger and freaks missions for any character, with all different outcomes. For example, passing by the state penitentiary, you may just recognize Lamar Davis, in a bluish grey jumpsuit, embellished with a pair of handcuffs wrapped around his wrists, demanding for a ride.
The map of GTA VI, will be bigger than GTA V and RDR2 combined, having several counties, having Vice City, based on Miami, the Vice Keys, based on the Florida Keys, The Everglades, based on the swampy Everglades in Florida. The game will also feature Orlando, which is named Corlado, and Tampa, named as Gulf Shore City, but downsized a bit. The game will feature sprawling countryside outside of Vice City and Corlado, with countryside towns, named Canisville, Centura, and Sentinel Point, along with towns along the Vice Keys. There is an Air Force Base, based of off Eglin Air Force Base, named Fort Sentinel. The Ocean is the Atlantic Ocean, with more shipwrecks to discover, plants and animals, and more. The game itself has as many animals as RDR2, and the player can hunt if they choose, although this is just a more of a minigame. Vigilante Missions will be back, along with Taxi Missions.
Character Customization will be better, from the belt on your waist, to the socks on your feet. Choose to your liking of luxury watches, rings, chains, earrings, featuring plain jane, to diamonds and rubies, emeralds, and more. Belts can be worn along with hightops, to lowtops and boots, and dress shoes. Pantlegs can be tucked into the footwear you choose, if the option is available. Tattoos will be back, along with hair customization. John is white so he can tan, or be sunburned, and the core system from RDR 2 is back aswell.
Tattoos will feature opacity and can also fade over time. You will be able to adjust the size of the tattoo. It will be able to be placed on over 10 different area of the body depending the size.
Since the core system is back, you will have to also bathe, to stay clean, otherwise you may notice changes in your cores.
You will have to eat to replenish cores, so you can cook in your safehouse, or go eat out in a restaurant, whether it be fast food or upscale. All characters can have relationships with women, similar to GTA 4 and GTA San Andreas. You will be able to buy extra safehouses around the map, and the amount of vehicles will be the same amount that are in GTA Online, and more. Every vehicle will be returning, and first person mode will be more enhanced, with more realistic vehicle interiors to immerse the player into every aspect of the game. South America will not be apart of the game, only Vice City and surrounding Areas.
Skills from GTA V is also being integrated back, along with exercising, to boost strength. Agility is a new added skill, and Strength will affect how hard you punch, kick, or melee in general.
Special Abilities so far, will not be coming back. This may be tweaked before release, but if they return, it will not be a major part of the game.
Car Customization is more advanced, different leather trims can be changed colors, along with wood trims and marble trims. You can add satellite radio, which lets you listen to radio stations in Los Santos, and Liberty City, but so far there is only two stations from each of those cities. You can also listen to all the radio stations across the counties. Neon is back, new spoilers and liveries as well, Along with different colors of tint. Subwoofers will be a standard upgrade as well.
Los Santos Customs is gone, and Pay and Spray is back, along with Viceland Kustomz, and Sentinel Bike Shop. You can also modify certain parts at the car dealerships.
The drug dealing system from GTA: China Town Wars is also returning, but a bit revamped. This is where the post office system comes in, from RDR2. Pounds of Marijuana sourced from Los Santos delivered by mail, to a post office near you. From weed to tabs of LSD, all the way to meth, heroin, and cocaine, you can reap major profits.
Casinos will be returning as well, one being a resort, others being small-time casinos. You will be able to rent a room in the casino and resort. The casino is named as the Malibu Casino and Resort.
Gunplay is improved with new realistic sounds. Interiors are just as detailed as GTA V or RDR2, if not more, I’d say. The insurance system from GTA Online will be integrated into GTA VI’s story mode, so losing a vehicle will not happen.
There is an abundance of new and old activities, that being over 50 strangers and freaks missions, drug supplying, or drug running, similar to GTA TBOGT’s drug missions. You can hunt, as stated before, but is more of a minigame than a money maker. You can fish as well, as fishing is a very popular sport, in modern day Florida.
There will be four strip clubs scattered around the map, one of them named Vanilla Unicorn South East, which is owned by Trevor Phillips, who is planned to make a cameo, only to be featured in a cutscene so far.
Nightclubs as I stated before, will be a thing. There will be 3 nightclubs, where you can take part in a few activities, like dancing, where you can meet your date in game, or drinking and smoking. Expect SOLOMUN, and BLACK MADONNA to return. You will see in game appearances of them DJing in the nightclubs. No other DJ’s will return.
Bounty hunting will not be a thing, but dirty work for the FIB throughout the story will be similar. Pool and bowling is returning, along with player skills, exercise and working out also is a thing, as stated above earlier.
Convenience stores and gas stations will feature many products you can purchase. Snacks, that being Phat chips, (different flavors yield more health and core restoration) candy bars, ( EgoChaser, Meteorite, Zebra Bar, and more) drinks, (E Cola, Sprunk,) Alcohol, (Pisswasser, Champagne, Logger) Redwood cigarettes, and cigars. The stores will be setup similar to RDR2’s store system. You can rob the stores, and also start a protection racket, and extort them.
Pharmacys will be in the game, to purchase portable med kits, or you can rob the pharmacy for drugs and money.
The way you eat can also affect your character’s health, and weight. Similar to GTA San Andreas’s system.
Merryweather will return, but won’t have the same presence as it did in GTA V. Merryweather ends up not being able to operate on U.S. soil, and goes out of business as a hit is put on Don Percival, by one of the returning characters from GTA V.
An advanced parkour system is integrated as well, similar to GTA IV’s.
Gun stores will be prevalent as this is based off of Florida. The homeless man who found the diamonds, from GTA TBOGT will also make an appearance as a gun store owner, as he has proceeded to purchase and start a gun shop in the area of South Vice Beach.
The black market for weapons is featured in this game as well, similar to fences in RDR2. You can also craft bombs/projectiles if you have learned to.
Realism is a goal of this game, without being too overwhelming. Guns and weapons will need to be cleaned. If you shoot a gun, you will smell of gun powder, this may be noticed by civilians or police officers, and they will make comments about it. If you have not bathed, you may just get absurd insults slurred at you. If you have blood stained on you, and you smell of blood, people may give you weird looks, or may just make a call to the local Law Enforcement.
As for those who DM me or ask about Strangers and Freaks, or mysteries and riddles, the paranormal world will be featured in GTA VI. You may encounter serial killers, or creepy sightings in dreary areas. Strangers and freaks will all have its own unique storyline.
The weather system is IMPROVED SIGNIFICANTLY aswell. Hurricanes do take place, but only during certain parts of the storyline, and floods may occur in marshland areas and anywhere away from mainland.
Melee Combat system is based off of strength, and Agility, which is a new skill, as stated above, and is improved heavily. Hand combat is influenced by strength and agility. Based on how hard you hit the opponent, you may bruise them, and bruise yourself. The chainsaw is returning as well. The limbs and gore is back from RDR2
Dialogue System from GTA San Andreas and RDR2 is back, and improved, with different responses every time.
GPS and Navigation System will be improved, showing the quickest routes, from alleyways to the freeway. Every street will have a name, and the GPS voice from GTA IV is returning as well, get ready to hear “Turn Left in 500 yards, Bing Bong.” Planes will have autopilot, and you can fly to each city with plane tickets, or on your own.
Driving mechanics will be similar to GTA IV’s, but combined with the smoothness of GTA V’s mechanics. Damage to the vehicle will be more detailed then ever, featuring airbag damage as well. EVERY Vehicle will have its own selected weight, and handling, to improve the player’s experience.
Six star wanted level is back, with FIB being the 6th star. There is multiple law enforcement agencies. VCPD, GSCPD, CPD, SPPD, Highway Patrol, FIB, IAA, Viceland State Patrol, as well as the NOOSE. You will not be shot by cops for just staring at them.
Being arrested results in you serving time, similar to RDR 1’s Jail time mechanic, showing you all of your charges while you sit in a cell. The first time you get arrested it will show your character being booked, and you will have to take a mugshot and be fingerprinted. Depending on the county or city you’ve been arrested in, you will be known to local law enforcement and even law abiding citizens, depending on how severe your charges are.
Random events are more realistic than ever. depending on the wanted level you’ve attained, there is a system similar to the bounty system of RDR2. The more crimes you’ve commited that have gained attention of law enforcement, you have a chance of getting your hotel room getting kicked in by noose, your safe house getting staked out by undercover FIB, even being pulled over if you have commited a number of crimes in the same vehicle. You may witness muggings, or even be mugged yourself. You will encounter situations with homeless people to the rich and famous, with all different outcomes.
Real Estate as stated before, will be available to all three characters. Businesses will be available, illicit and legal, from businesses to launder cash for the gang, to illicit businesses like credit fraud rings, to counterfeit cash.
Safe houses will be available as well. A penthouse in Corlado, a modern mansion on Starfish Island, a beach house on Ocean Beach, a small quaint house in Canisville, a traditional house in Gulf Shore City, a vacation-style home in the Vice Keys, to small apartments in small towns like Centura or Sentinel Point. Each character will be able to purchase any of these properties, but it will be tied to just the one character that purchased it.
Hotels and Motels will also be available to rent rooms and bathe in, one being the Gulf Shore motel, a dingy motel room for cheap, perfect for someone wanting a cheap stay. The Malibu Casino and Resort near Vice Beach, a 5 star luxury stay, with a two-story penthouse with a jacuzzi the player can bathe in, with views of Vice Beach, and the nearby Ocean Beach. There is 4 hotels and 2 motels scattered across the map, each with unique interiors and different amenities.
Purchasing vehicles you can enter a dealership, or purchase online and have it delivered to a garage. Pegasus Concierge is returning. Certain stolen vehicles will have trackers, and will not be able to be modified, same as GTA V.
The stock market is also returning, BAWSAQ and VLSM ( Vice Land Stock Market ) and can reap heavy profits as well.
Time goes by: This game is set in 2017-2019. Times will change thruout, buildings will be completed as they were in RDR2, radio stations will not play all of the music in the tracklist at first. Instead it will play newer music thruout the storyline. You will still hear older and newer songs too after completion.
Character customization is not just clothing, tattoos, jewelry and hair customization. You can also purchase 3 different phone models. an iFruit phone, based on the iPhone Xr, a Badger phone, or a Whiz Wireless. You will also be able to purchase ringtones, as you were able to do in GTA IV. You can also purchase an iFruit watch, based on the apple watch, which you can take calls on, if you change your settings.
Depending on how rough you play, clothing can wear and tear. Examples: jumping out of a moving vehicle, falling off/on rocks, tripping on certain props.
As stated above, NPC’s will notice the clothing you wear, the way you look or smell, the car you drive, and the jewelry you wear, and will make comments on it.
Crouching will be back, the same as RDR2, and the cover system is nearly the exact same cover system as RDR2.
ALSO Expect a Special Edition, AND Collector’s Edition, similar to RDR2.
The game is set in the summer of 2017 to 2019 as the storyline proceeds. This game WILL BE PS5 Exclusive, for the first month. The in-game experience is like no other, PS5 also has a new controller design as well. It is projected to not release until later 2020, AFTER holiday season BUT MAY BE DELAYED. I have broken down the storyline, key elements of the game, and if anyone has anymore questions I will be happy to answer. I know so much about this game as I’ve been working on it since the start, and I’m not afraid to get in trouble, as this is a throwaway.
I will not be responding to negative comments, claiming this is fake, because I will not waste my time with non-believers, only true questions.
all content is confirmed unless it has been mentioned by me to not be officially confirmed already, and anything may be scrapped before release as cut content, but is unlikely
*PLEASE UPVOTE. I do not want my effort and the risks I am taking to go to waste. I want this to not get buried. *
if you have questions or WANT MORE? (screenshots or photos as proof, radio stations, confirmed tracklists or more) Send Me A Chat.
You may see songs from previous games, as Rockstar may have the licenses still, or has renewed them.
CONFIRMED SONGS, AND RADIO STATIONS.
Satellite Radio: Liberty City
Beat 102.7- Hosted By DJ Whoo Kid
Beat 102.7 Logo- https://imgur.com/a/To0Wi8c
Liberty Rock Radio- Hosted By Iggy Pop
LRR Logo- https://imgur.com/a/5dCcVwB
Satellite Radio:
Radio Los Santos- Hosted By BigBoy
Radio Los Santos Logo- https://imgur.com/a/XUqjEed
Los Santos Rock Radio- Hosted By Kenny Loggins
Los Santos Rock Radio Logo- https://imgur.com/a/KxkMMd6
LOCAL RADIO STATIONS
NightRide FM Hosted By Kavinsky
NightRide FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/bb0hXDP
Corlado’s Hottest Jams 103.7 Hosted By Feliciá Williams and DJ Diamondz
CHJ 103.7 Logo- https://imgur.com/a/eWauMMj
V-Rock FM Hosted By Couzin Ed
V-Rock FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/9zQUsAE
Vice City’s Retro Mix , 104.7 Fm Hosted By Fernando Martinez
VCRM 104.7 FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/wdrjsLH
Vice City Classic Hip Hop Hosted By DJ slick slim
Vice City Classic Hip Hip Logo- https://imgur.com/a/f859okr
Viceland’s Country Radio (VLCR) Hosted By Derrick Jones
VLCR Logo- https://imgur.com/a/VwZ1jw3
GSC-EDM FM ( Gulf Shore City EDM Fm ) Hosted By Gulf Shore City FM.
GSC-EDM FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/2zAlvsR
The Sunrise Fm ( Reggae music ) Hosted By Marshall Peters
The Sunrise Fm Logo- https://imgur.com/a/ea639SV
Vice Rap Radio ( VRR ) ( modern florida rap ) Hosted By DJ Josué Da Kidd
Vice Rap Radio Logo- https://imgur.com/a/F6qeX0U
The Groove 109.2 Hosted By Vaughn Harper
The Groove 109.2 Logo- https://imgur.com/a/vuon14i
Baila Ahora Radio (modern spanish station) Hosted By Amada Abrantes
Baila Ahora Radio Logo- https://imgur.com/a/TpBFTTd
Interesante Musica Radio ( modern and old spanish music ) Hosted By Selená Martinez * Los Hermanos Rosario, La Dueña Del Swing * los reyes del merengue, El Baile del Beeper - Versión Merengue * Celia Cruz, La Vida Es Un Carnaval * INDIA, Marc Anthony, Vivir Lo Nuestro * Felipe Muñiz, Marc Anthony, Deje de Amar * Ivy Queen, Dime * Monchy and Alexandra, Alexandra
Musica de Clásico FM ( Salsa ) Hosted By Pedro Simmóns
Flash FM ( 2000’s and 90’s pop) Hosted By DJ Toni
Flash FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/iWIYd8s
Ocean Beach Classics FM (80’s synth pop) Hosted By DJ Teri
OBC FM Logo- https://imgur.com/a/5C1JVGJ
The Wave 103 (Slow/Vocal Synthwave + Indie Synth) Hosted By Adam First, Trish Camden
The Wave 103 Logo- https://imgur.com/a/Ku0amCT
Centura County Country Hits ( newer country ) Hosted By Rick Hanson
Centura County Country Hits Logo- https://imgur.com/a/wppVRMu
The Keys Rock Radio ( mix of rock) Hosted By Gerald Ritsky
The Keys Rock Radio Logo- https://imgur.com/a/JpWpA8x
Viceland Lithium Radio ( Hardcore Rock, Heavy Metal ) ( VLLR ) Hosted By VLLR.
VLLR Logo- https://imgur.com/a/wOsEIlj
Trap House Radio ( Trap Rap ) Hosted By DJ BlueBandz
Trap House Radio Logo- https://imgur.com/a/lyG3FGA
Anarchy Radio 98.5 FM ( Alt Rock, Punk) Hosted By Jason Lavigne
Chatterbox Vice City Talk Radio
CBVCTR Logo- https://imgur.com/a/FKko1f1
CTR Corlado Talk Radio
-host, Lazlow - Fernando Martinez
Viceland News Network VLNN
VLNN Logo- https://imgur.com/a/yaBucdY
Host- Vanessa Hopkins, Weazel News. - Updates on weather and Weazel News
Ignore this below.
Legal Disclaimer: This post is not affiliated with Rockstar Games or Take-Two Interactive, or its subsidiaries, In any way, shape or form, and should be taken as satirical. Ignore this below.
Legal Disclaimer: This post is not affiliated with Rockstar Games or Take-Two Interactive, or its subsidiaries, In any way, shape or form, and should be taken as satirical.
Along with the No phone, No photos policy, It will be very difficult to get OFFICIAL screenshots. Here is a official, accurate sketch of the GTA VI Minimap and cores design
https://imgur.com/a/ghyoRb4
Here is the sketch of the mini map on computer.
https://imgur.com/a/D0Qj0EP
I will be uploading more sketches soon.
FOLLOW ME FOR MORE INFORMATION COMING SOON
Here’s my Rockstar badge / ID. it is dirty, apologies. The rockstar logo, imprinted on the card itself, along with my photo, blurred out, my name below it, and the expiration date, years 2019-2020. this is only an ID to get into the building. since i have released a bit of proof, stop spreading misinformation
https://imgur.com/a/eenWmAR
You can still trust my leak, but here is a legal disclaimer so I cannot be targeted.
Ignore this below.
-legal disclaimer. this is fictional and not proven, this post is not associated with taketwo or rockstar games in any way, shape, or form.
submitted by aFloatingPineapple to u/aFloatingPineapple [link] [comments]

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Top 10 Fastest High Speed Trains in the World - YouTube

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