Tuesday, May 9, 2017

FBI Director Comey fired in shocking manner. But, was it overdue?

If you are a democrat supporter, you may been have shocked by today's stunning news of James Comey's termination as FBI director. James Comey is no longer the FBI director. He found out the news, by watching it literally on TV. James was in the Los Angeles area, as he was supposed to speak at an FBI recruiting event in nearby Hollywood on Tuesday night. Instead, he did not even make it to the Directors Guild Awards (DGA) building in Hollywood. It is a sad way for Mr. Comey to learn, that he was fired by President Donald Trump. Mr. Comey went into a motorcade, and went on a private jet en route to Washington to get the official word. Furthermore, Mr. Trump has fired some well known prosecutors in his first four months. In addition to FBI Director Comey, both Preet Bharara and Sally Yates were dismissed in eccentric ways. Yet, Comey could have lost his job at the end of January. Many Republican supporters wanted Comey to be replaced, as many government officials are replaced when a new presidential regime takes over. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. is a longstanding senator that is calling the Comey firing, as another big mistake by the Trump administration. Schumer is calling for a special prosecutor to investigate the Trump-Russia probe. Many politicians are stating that the DOJ (dept. of Justice) should have been investigating the Trump-Russia probe, not the FBI itself. In the end, it appears that some Democrats including Schumer had lost confidence in James Comey. With James Comey's tenure at the FBI ending, who could be the next FBI director? It is the first time since 1993, that an FBI director was fired. Andrew McCabe will oversee the FBI, until the POTUS appoints a new director. Some Democratic politicians, like Sen. Bob Casey from Pennsylvania, are terming the firing as a 'Nixonian' move. It is a direct comparison to the Richard Nixon days as President, almost 45+ years ago. In closing, James Comey came under fire for his handling of the Hillary Clinton private e-mail server investigation in summer/fall of 2016. What's next on the career front for Mr. Comey? James Comey could join the faculty, of a prestigious law school at a DC University a la Georgetown. Or, he could retire from the public eye. Doubt that is going to happen. Nonetheless, we wish Mr. Comey the best in his future endeavors. Remember the best revenge is living well!

Monday, April 24, 2017

First round of French elections results show Emmanuel Macron, and Marine Le Pen heading to runoff

Yesterday, the first round of the French presidential elections happened. There will be a runoff election, as Emmanuel Macron received 24% of the popular vote. He was in first place. Marine Le Pen got 2nd place, with 21% of the vote. Emmanuel is 39 years old, and he is a former investment banker. The runoff election will be on May 7, and it will pit Le Pen vs. Macron. Furthermore, let's discuss Marine's political agenda. Le Pen's message is anti-immigration, anti-European Union. Her message is France with borders. She is 48 years old. She stepped down as the main leader of the National Front party, in order to get more votes for the runoff election. Le Pen wants to have a temporary ban on legal immigration to France. She wants France to leave the EU (European Union), like the UK did in June 2016. UK had 'Brexit'; and France could have 'Frexit' in 2018. In contrast, Emmanuel Macron's political party is called 'En Marche.' It means moving forward in French literally. The party was created in September 2016. Macron did better in the recent nationally televised debates. Macron is an inexperienced politician, as he has not served in any political office or position. He was a former economy minister under prime minister Manuel Valls, and a former member of the Socialist party. In closing, Francois Hollande is the incumbent French president. He decided not to run for a second term, as his popularity rating was under 20%. May the best candidate win the French presidential election runoff, which happens in almost two weeks. Enjoy the picture above of both candidates, Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron. Au Revoir toutes les personnes!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

2017 first quarter profit prediction for Samsung, plus Galaxy S8 preview

Last year, Samsung had to deal with its Galaxy Note 7 device being prone to producing fires at inopportune times. In 2017, the global memory chip leader will announce its best quarterly profit in more than three years. What a difference that nine to twelve months makes for the South Korean company to recover? First quarter operating profit will be $8.8 billion, and the semiconductor business sales is the main product/component for the great profits. Sales of the company's mid to low tier smartphones also helped the mobile division stay profitable. Eleven days ago, the Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphone was launched in NYC. The new smartphone will hit the market globally on April 21. Without a doubt, there will be a huge wait for this new premium device. Next, researchers are foreseeing that the S8 will set a new first year sales record. The Galaxy S8 will have the largest screen (5.8 in.) for its high end smartphones ever. Android version 7 will be the OS for this new smartphone. Let's discuss more facts about Samsung, and the Galaxy S8 product. Samsung is South Korea's biggest family run conglomerate. The multifaceted company makes TVs; smartphones; refrigerators, laptop computers; among other products. On the back of a memory chip super-cycle, the company and its main rivals should produce very high profits for the first quarter. In addition, Samsung is releasing the Galaxy S8+ in China and South Korea. This new smartphone will battle the Apple Iphone 7 plus product in the second quarter of 2017. The Galaxy S8 smartphone should be available to most Samsung mobile phone customers by June, or July 2017 in the US. The phone will supposedly cost $750-$850 in the US, if you buy it new. The mobile smartphone wars between Apple, and Samsung are heating up in the second quarter and beyond. Enjoy the picture of the new Samsung Galaxy S8 smartphone. It looks pretty slick to me.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Water.org and their mission for clean water in 2020

You may have seen Matt Damon doing a commercial with Stella Artois in the past few weeks. But, it is not for alcohol fully. The advertisement has to do with Water.org and bringing long-term clean water to the world. The commercial has been on TV for the past month or two. Matt Damon and Gary White are the cofounders of Water.org. Water.org has a mission to bring clean water to 3.5 million more people in developing countries, by 2020. Damon and White want to inform the American public about the global water crisis, which many US citizens are unaware of. For instance, the global water crisis is affecting over 600 million people worldwide. Matt and Gary have partnered with Stella Artois for the Buy A Lady A Drink campaign, which will help raise awareness about the global water debacle. Gary mentioned that their organization was discussing the water crisis to the audience in Davos, Switz. recently. Matt and Gary started water.org in 2009. Another goal of water.org is to provide safe water and sanitation, which is a growing concern. Next, water.org is a website which makes about $4-$5 million annually. Water.org has a new ventures fund, that acts as a source of innovation funding to pilot, disseminate and scale initiatives that address the main causes of the water crisis. The new ventures fund is for private capital for building wells, and other ways to get running clean water to everyone. Also, Matt and Gary are working with PepsiCo to provide access to safe water and sanitation. Their partnership has been an ongoing one for almost a decade. Finally, Hope you like the picture of Matt and Gary at the Clinton Global Initiative's 10th Annual meeting. Matt Damon and Gary White have definitely informed me about water.org, and it is good to see Matt helping others in a cosmopolitan fashion. Hope they continue their hard work, and that water can be provided to the 2.4 billion people who don't have access to it.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Brooklyn Nets honoring deceased rapper, Christopher Wallace; and new 2Pac Shakur movie

Nearly two decades ago, Christopher 'Notorious B.I.G.' Wallace was gunned down in the Los Angeles area. It was a drive by shooting, and the murder was unsolved by LAPD. March 12, 2017 will be a day of honoring Christopher Wallace at Barclays Arena in Brooklyn, NY. The Brooklyn Nets will host the NY Knicks on this day, also known as 'Biggie Night.' The Brooklyn Nets have had a lousy season this year, as they have won only 11 out of 62 games. Furthermore, Sean 'Puff Daddy' Combs and Voletta Wallace will play a big part in the event. Christopher Wallace's four kids will be present at the event also. If 2Pac Shakur was alive, then he may have attended the event. The two rappers were friends, and became enemies later in 2pac's short-lived life. As for 2Pac Shakur, there may be a new movie about the deceased West Coast rapper appearing in theaters in June 2017. The movie is titled 'All Eyez on Me'; just like his most popular double album from 1996. It has been more than 2 decades, since 2Pac was gunned down in Las Vegas. This murder was unsolved by Las Vegas Police Department. Demetrius Shipp will play the part of 2Pac. Jamal Woolard will reprise his role of Christopher Wallace from 'Notorious'; in the latest 2pac flick. Finally, both rappers would have been in their mid-40s if they were not gunned down. Both men were married, but were total players or 'ballers.' Both rappers have famous songs, which get airplay from time to time on radio stations. Their music is popular in nightclubs around the country as well. There are many conspiracy theories on the deaths of both rappers. Inquiring minds want to know who the real killers are. Enjoy the picture above of 2pac and Biggie Smalls.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Lyft, Uber, and Waze: profile of three ride-sharing services

In 2014, Lyft was a new brand for me to read about. But, Lyft has never given me a ride. No pun intended! In 2015, Uber was the first and only ride sharing service for me to try. It was quite expensive in Phoenix. Then, San Diego seemed to be a good place for me to try Uber again. The second time around, it was not that expensive. Aside from a personal experience, Uber has the higher market capitalization than Lyft. Uber has a market capitalization of $68 billion, while Lyft has a market capitalization of $6 billion only. Both services require the user to download an app. to their smartphone. If you don't have the app., then it is difficult to use the services. Uber operates in 500 cities across 70 countries, while Lyft is expanding in 54 new cities in the US only. Next, there is Waze carpooling service which is owned primarily by Google. Waze could generate more profits as Uber is dealing with accusations of sexual harassment internally, from its own employees. While Uber is dealing with internal problems, Waze is expanding into more than nine counties in the San Francisco Bay area. Lyft and Uber are considered 'unicorn companies'; as each company has a market capitalization of more than $1 billion along with being privately owned. Lyft, Uber, and Waze are headquartered in the San Francisco bay area. Finally, Uber has over 6,700 employees and it was started in 2009 by Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp. Uber, Lyft, and Waze have brought increased competition to the taxi industry. Lyft was launched in 2012 by Logan Green and John Zimmer. Lyft has a pink mustache, for its logo. Both companies have raised money from successful VCs including General Motors, Morgan Stanley, and the Mayfield Fund. In the end, there is some good competition from a domestic and global standpoint. Enjoy the picture above of the Lyft app. It is available to download on Google Play, and the Apple app store.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

New music reviews of Big $ean, John Mayer, and Ka$Kade

Big $ean, aka Sean Anderson, released his 4th solo album on February 3. The new album is titled 'I decided'; and it has a great collaboration with Eminem. The song with Eminem is 'no favors'; and Marshall Mathers disrespects Ann Coulter plus President Donald Trump. Big $ean does his classic rapping on the track, but Eminem steals the show. Two of the other early tracks off the album are 'moves' and 'Bounce back.' 'Moves' is a wacky track, which is less than 150 seconds. Thank God!! 'Bounce Back' is a good one for sure. Finally, the 4th track that G. Ripley has heard is 'halfway off the balcony.' This one is another stellar Big Sean track, and he rhymes sooo tight on this beat. Enjoy the picture above of Big Sean, and Jhene Aiko. Friends, or a couple? In contrast, John Mayer has released a new EP. The EP has four tracks, and it is titled 'The Search For Everything.' Three of the tracks are really good, especially 'love on the weekend' and 'Moving On and Getting Over.' Another good song is 'changing.' These four songs are John's newest material in over 3 years, since his stellar 'Paradise Valley' album in late 2013. It's good to see his pop music on mainstream radio, and youtube again. Lastly, Kaskade performed at the 2017 Waste Management Open in Scottsdale, AZ. He has not released a new album since his mixed 'Automatic' album in 2015. This album had some ok tracks like 'Disarm U'; but the EDM tracks were not my favorite off this album. Recently, Haley and Kaskade collaborated on 'Let It Out'; which is a soft EDM track. Haley's voice is beautiful, and Kaskade mixes some smooth beats. Seeing Kaskade perform in Las Vegas is on my bucket list.