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Europe’s Energy Crisis Leaves Almost All Of Pakistan Without Power
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/78266 > Millions of people were left without drinking water as electric-powered pumps failed. While some schools and hospitals were able to turn to backup generators, many were left without power entirely throughout the day. Pakistani authorities went as far as deploying additional police at markets around the country as the sun went down, for extra security in the darkness.

Crushed Bug ‘Additive’ is Now Included in Pizza, Pasta & Cereals Across the EU
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/77803 > house crickets are on the menu for Europeans across the continent, without the vast majority of them knowing it is now in their food.

EU Official Threatens Elon Musk for Allowing Free Speech on Twitter
“Under the new regulatory framework, which aims to protect the rights of online users and remove illegal content or disinformation, platforms could expect to be fined up to 6 per cent of their annual revenue if found to violate the rules by EU regulators.”

Report 52: Nine Months Post-COVID mRNA "Vaccine" Rollout, Substantial Birth Rate Drops in 13 European Countries, England/Wales, Australia, and Taiwan. - DailyClout
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/75431 > - Nine months following the rollout of the COVID-19 mRNA “vaccines,” substantial birth rate drops were seen in 13 of 19 European countries, England and Wales (one entity based on how data is published), Australia, and Taiwan. > - The decline in births in Switzerland was the largest in 150 years – more than during two World Wars, the Great Depression, and the advent of widely available birth control. > - There was an 8.3% drop in the birth rate in Germany through three quarters of 2022. > England and Wales had a 12% birth rate drop through June 2022, which is when their government stopped publishing data related to this. > - Taiwan reported an alarming birth rate drop, but its data are incomplete. > - Australian birth rates fell 21% from October to November 2021, followed by a 63% decrease from November to December 2021.

New stronger rules start to apply for the cyber and physical resilience of critical entities and networks
cross-posted from: https://community.nicfab.it/post/25685 > Today, two key directives on critical and digital infrastructure will enter into force and will strengthen the EU's resilience against online and offline threats, from cyberattacks to crime, risks to public health or natural disasters > image of people working on screens in a computer centre > Recent threats to the EU's critical infrastructure have attempted to undermine our collective security. Already in 2020, the Commission had proposed a significant upgrade to the EU's rules on the resilience of critical entities and the security of network and information systems. > > The 2 Directives entering into force are: > > * [Directive on measures for a high common level of cybersecurity across the Union (NIS 2 Directive)](https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli/dir/2022/2555) > * [Directive on the resilience of critical entities (CER Directive)](https://eur-lex.europa.eu/eli/dir/2022/2557/oj) > > The NIS 2 Directive will ensure a safer and stronger Europe by significantly expanding the sectors and type of critical entities falling under its scope. These include providers of public electronic communications networks and services, data centre services, wastewater and waste management, manufacturing of critical products, postal and courier services and public administration entities, as well as the healthcare sector more broadly. Furthermore, it will strengthen the cybersecurity risk management requirements that companies are obliged to comply with, as well as streamline incident reporting obligations with more precise provisions on reporting, content and timeline. The NIS2 Directive replaces the [rules on the security of network and information systems](https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=uriserv:OJ.L_.2016.194.01.0001.01.ENG&toc=OJ:L:2016:194:TOC), the first EU-wide legislation on cybersecurity.

Sweden discovers largest rare earth deposit in Europe
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/74490 > Sweden is seen as a crucial part of the European Union’s strategy for self-sufficiency in critical minerals. > > “Electrification, the EU’s self-sufficiency and independence from Russia and China will begin in the mine,” said Ebba Busch, Sweden’s energy, business and industry minister.

Bribe Back Better: How Qatar can buy EU officials for fun and profit without police interference
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/74061 > In Brussels, bribery is legal and thriving, and nobody has to serve a day in prison for taking a cut. MEPs are even allowed to accrue substantial fortunes by legally working part-time (representing citizens at the European level is apparently not necessarily a full-time job). > > It is not just about George Soros and his frankly impressive network of NGOs, think tanks, and the massive sums of money they can throw around. There’s a wide range of special interests that promote their agenda through entirely legal lobbying. In fact, as a report shows, MEPs are collectively earning millions working various side jobs in addition to their role as politicians in the EU, often with a clear conflict of interest. Many of these people are already millionaires, and for those who are not, the salary of MEPs and EU officials are already the envy of most Europeans. Yet, there is always more money to be made.

Meta prohibited from use of personal data for advertising
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/72985 > Meta is now prohibited to bypass the GDPR via a clause in the terms and conditions. Meta has to get "opt-in" consent for personalized advertisement and must provide users with a "yes/no" option. The decision on a third parallel case on WhatsApp is delayed until mid-January.

Qatargate: 2 Socialist MEPs to have their immunity lifted as EU corruption probe grows
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/72552 > The two MEPs are Italian Andrea Cozzolino and Belgian Marc Tarabella, both members of the European Social Democrats (S&D) group. > > “Following a request from the Belgian judicial authorities, I have launched an urgent procedure for the waiver of immunity of two Members of the European Parliament. There will be no impunity. None,” promised European Parliament President Roberta Metsola on Twitter.

Why A Bitcoin Ban In The EU Is Likely… And Stupid
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/72013 > In general, the ECB believes it’s highly unlikely that the European Union will not take action in terms of carbon emissions on PoW-based assets like bitcoin. The authors of the paper argue that in their view it’s likely that the EU will take similar steps on phasing out PoW as they are doing with fossil fuel cars. Especially since, according to them, an “alternative, less energy-intensive” technology like PoS exists.

cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/70129 > Residents of the European Union must pay for the greenhouse gases they emit. This means that every time you refuel and if the heating is switched on, you have to pay because of the harmful substances that are released as a result.

cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/69432 > “Amazon can no longer abuse its dual role and will have to change several business practices. Competing independent retailers and carriers as well as consumers will benefit from these changes opening up new opportunities and choice.”

Will the Fallout from "Qatargate" (and now also "Moroccogate") Splatter the European Commission?
cross-posted from: https://exploding-heads.com/post/68805 > Politico describes Qatargate as the biggest corruption scandal to hit the EU in years, though it faces a run for its money from the blossoming scandal over the Commission’s deeply opaque dealings with Pfizer and other vaccine makers, which is now the subject of an investigation by the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. The EU’s ombudsman Emily O’Reilly branded the Commission’s refusal to disclose the text messages between von der Leyen and Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla as “maladministration.” > > In contrast to Qatargate, that scandal has been studiously ignored by Europe’s legacy media despite the staggering sums of money involved (tens of billions of dollars to date to buy up to 1.8 billion COVID-19 vaccines), the number of people affected (anyone who pays taxes in the EU and felt compelled by the EU’s vaccine passport rules to take a medical product they didn’t want) and the seniority of those implicated, including Von der Leyen herself and Albert Bourla, CEO of Pfizer, one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies.

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