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Clinton team and Democrats ‘bankrolled’ Trump dirty dossier

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Clinton team and Democrats 'bankrolled' Trump dirty dossier

US President Donald Trump has seized on reports that Hillary Clinton's team bankrolled a sleazy dossier of allegations linking him to Russia.

Unfounded claims that Mr Trump had been filmed with prostitutes in a Moscow hotel surfaced in the closing stretch of last year's White House race.

Mrs Clinton's presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee (DNC) reportedly helped fund the research.

"The victim here is the President," Mr Trump tweeted on Wednesday.

  • Trump 'compromising' claims
  • How did 'compromising' Trump claims come to light?

According to US media reports, Perkins Coie, a law firm representing the Clinton campaign and DNC, hired intelligence firm Fusion GPS in April 2016.

Skip Twitter post by @kenvogel

When I tried to report this story, Clinton campaign lawyer @marceelias pushed back vigorously, saying "You (or your sources) are wrong." https://t.co/B5BZwoaNhI

— Kenneth P. Vogel (@kenvogel) October 24, 2017

Report

End of Twitter post by @kenvogel

Fusion GPS, based in Washington DC, was paid to dig up dirt on Mr Trump, who was then Mrs Clinton's rival for the presidency.

The intelligence firm subcontracted Christopher Steele, a former British spy who previously worked in Russia, to compile the research.

Attributed to unnamed sources, it claimed that Mr Trump had colluded with Russian officials during the election campaign.

The unsubstantiated dossier also alleged that Kremlin spies filmed Mr Trump with prostitutes at Moscow's Ritz-Carlton hotel in 2013.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Christopher Steele, a former British spy who worked in Russia, compiled the research

The opposition research was initially funded by an unknown Republican consulting firm, which pulled the plug once Mr Trump captured the party's nomination.

The Clinton campaign then picked up the tab, according to the reports.

As he headed off to Dallas, Texas, on Wednesday, President Trump told reporters on the White House lawn: "It's very sad what they've done with this fake dossier."

He added: "Hillary Clinton always denied it, the Democrats always denied it.

"I think it's a disgrace, it's a very sad commentary on politics in this country."

In January shortly before he was sworn in as president, Mr Trump dismissed the dossier as "fake news".

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders tweeted on Tuesday: "The real Russia scandal? Clinton campaign paid for the fake Russia dossier, then lied about it & covered it up."

Government outsourcing

Anthony Zurcher, BBC News, Washington

Political campaigns have been in the business of digging up dirt on their rivals since the dawn of democratic elections. A choice bit of "opposition research", deployed at an opportune moment, can be a decisive factor in a close election.

So it should come as little surprise that supporters of a Republican candidate went to work building a file on Donald Trump during the party primaries or that Democrats took the baton as the general election geared up.

What's unusual – and what will pique the interest of investigators and fuel the suspicions of conservatives – is that after the election, once Hillary Clinton was defeated, the FBI would pick up funding for this investigation.

A topic as sensitive as this – allegations of foreign influence on a presidential campaign – doesn't seem like something the US government should be outsourcing.

There have been plenty of accusations, on both sides of ideological divide, that the FBI has become politicised. Stories like this won't help diminish those concerns.

In fact, they will almost certainly be cited to undermine the results of ongoing inquiries into Mr Trump's possible Russia ties, whether or not the eventual findings have a connection to this now-infamous dossier.

The DNC said its new leadership had nothing to do with creation of the dossier.

A spokeswoman told the Washington Post, which broke the story: "But let's be clear, there is a serious federal investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia, and the American public deserves to know what happened."

Earlier this week, a US judge gave Fusion GPS until Thursday to reach an agreement with congressional investigators who issued a subpoena to see the firm's bank records over the last two years.

Some of Mr Steele's allegations began circulating in Washington in the summer of 2016 as the FBI began looking into whether there were any links between Trump aides and the Kremlin.

Special counsel Robert Mueller and several congressional panels are investigating the same alleged connections, but to date have revealed no conclusive evidence.

A few weeks ago Mr Mueller's team questioned Mr Steele about the assertions in the dossier.


Source – bbc.com

Lifestyle

10 Ways Your Smartphone Can Save Your Life

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Image Credits: Shutterstock

Technology has taken us places; ever since the first computer came into being the human civilization has improved it’s quality of living by leaps and bounds and maybe the biggest innovation today is our handheld smartphone through which, we can access all kinds of information. It help us to build comfortable lives . Here are some smart phone hacks that can really help you out in tight situations.

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10. Helps you safely get home:

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Now there are several apps that you can turn on when your crossing a potentially dangerous area. You can simply turn them on and press on the button if you turn it off and don’t press in a code the app will automatically contact the police.

9. Night Vision:

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Night vision was developed originally for military use. It was a secret technology at the time and was widely used for purposes such as navigation, surveillance, security and targeting. Law enforcement has used night vision to discover items that have been hidden or disturbed as thermal imaging. This allows them to search for areas that have been disturbed, that might not be visible to the naked eye. And now thanks to modern technology we have night vision apps in our app stores and at times pre-installed into our cameras.

image credits: iStock

8. Medical apps:

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Smartphones now allow you to make a medical ID. So if you ever find yourself in an emergency situation you can call for help and people will see your medical ID that can be formed in “Emergency” in IOS and “Emergency call” on Android.

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7. Detect if your getting a stroke or a heart attack:

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A smart phone manufacturer company has launched an ECG containing smartphone. Once you rest your fingers on the phones back buttons it monitors your ECG patterns allowing you to monitor your ECG patterns using algorithms and helps predict if you may be at risk of a stroke or a heart attack.

6. It can help make sure your driving safely:

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Honda has manufactured a new app that helps you drive more safely than ever before. It connect to your car and help you locate it. It allows you to share your location if your stuck in traffic and can’t attend a call. It also monitors your cars health and gives an automatic response if your car isn’t working allowing the Honda helpline to reach you immediately.

5. Weather notifications:

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Our phones today are installed with weather apps that help us in predicting the oncoming weather. It help us in many ways. It saves us from n sandstorms, hurricanes and torrential downpours, because the climate is always changing and unpredictable, and it can always turn from sunny morning to a storm of biblical proportions. We have our smartphones to thank for saving the day by giving us a handy weather forecast whenever we need it!

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4. Can diagnose vision disorders:

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NETRA is a simple device priced around two dollars that uses your cameras resolution to help diagnose eye related disorders including cataract. This little device can even give you an appropriate eye prescription for corrective lenses you may require.

3. Can help you record a crime in progress:

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It is sad that we would need our smartphones for this kind of stuff but life is unpredictable so its always better to be prepared. If you are ever worried that you may become a victim or witnessing one from afar you can use apps like Facebook live, mobile justice and periscope to quickly record any evidence you might require.

2. Survival apps:

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No one can predict the future and no one can tell you what you might encounter in your life, so its better to have a survival app in your phone for the purpose of an emergency. Excellent survival apps include the “Army survival guide” a fourteen hundred page manual that will help you out in any situation.

1. Never lets you get lost:

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You are never lost if you have your smartphone with you, with apps like google earth that can use your GPS. You can find a nearby road or a gas station or even a lake!

Image Credit: Shutterstock

Whatever your looking for. Now there are hundreds of apps available to help you find your way home.

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Article: Born Realist

The post 10 Ways Your Smartphone Can Save Your Life appeared first on Born Realist.


Source – bornrealist.com

World

Qatar introduces minimum wage for first time

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Qatar introduces minimum wage for first time

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Migrants working in construction for the World Cup are often reported to face harsh conditions

Qatar has committed to a range of labour law reforms, including the introduction of a minimum wage.

Doha's record on migrant worker rights has been under international scrutiny in the run-up to the 2022 football World Cup.

The announcement came the day before a meeting of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), which had warned Qatar to end abuse of migrant workers.

The International Trade Union Confederation (ICTU) welcomed the move.

Its general secretary Sharan Burrow said the changes signalled the start of "real reforms" and "will bring to an end the use of modern slavery".

The ILO – a UN agency – had given Qatar a deadline of November to demonstrate progress on migrant workers' rights, and could open a rare formal investigation.

Its governing body is meeting in a plenary session between 26 October and 9 November.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption World Cup venues like the Al Wakrah stadium are being built from scratch for the tournament

Qatar has long operated on a system called "kafala", a strict work sponsorship scheme that forced foreign workers to get permission from their employer to change jobs, or even leave the country.

Qatari officials announced an end to the kafala system in December 2016, which was met with scepticism by rights group Amnesty International and others.

The ITUC said that the latest agreed reforms include:

  • A minimum wage for all workers, regardless of race
  • Employers will no longer be able to stop employees leaving Qatar
  • Identification documents will be issued by the state, rather than businesses
  • A central authority will track work contracts, to prevent promised terms being replaced with worse conditions
  • Employee's committees will be set up in workplaces, alongside a complaint resolution process

Ms Burrow said that much still needed to be done, and the ITUC would be meeting with Qatar's labour minister to discuss the issues.

It is unclear when any or all of the proposed changes will come into effect.

There are an estimated 1.5 to 2 million migrant workers in Qatar, many of whom work in the construction industry and come from Asian countries.

A 2013 report from the ITUC said at least 1,200 migrant workers had died in the 2022 World Cup construction projects.

The number is difficult to verify, but a BBC analysis in 2015 suggested it could be even higher, and it also may have risen since.


Source – bbc.com

Lifestyle

10 Warning Signs That You’re Dealing With An Evil Person

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Evil is something we hear about from the start of our lives, in form of villains, evil queen and many more depicted in fairy tales. Growing up you realize that evil does not really have a proper shape. Any person around you could be evil; they don’t need to have dark magical powers or pointed teeth to be evil. As every human being looks the same, it gets hard to see the evil side of people sometimes. In some human cases evil is very much visible in form of mental or physical abuse but then there are cases where you cannot really guess if the person is your friend or an evil face is hiding behind it. Born Realist has listed down some of the obvious qualities found in an evil person. This can save you from trauma in future.

Image Credits: Shutterstock

10. They Deny Reality:

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They deny any kind of reality around you. Basically they like to bend the world to their will and everything around them should be to their liking. An evil or abusive person will never accept the actual reality. No matter how much you state facts and try to tell them what is right and what is wrong. Your discussion will always end in losing because they would go till any extent to prove that there twisted version is right when in actually it does not even make any sense.

9. They Twist Facts:

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They add in extra material and details in facts to support their arguments and make them look like a superior or better human being. They don’t have any regard for the originality or how there twisting facts might affect someone else. They would go to any extent to make themselves look like the better person. Their stories would always have extra content in them that would just be there to create evidence to their facts.

8. They Withhold Information:

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They don’t have any problem in lying or keeping secrets if they think some fact would affect their relationship with you. They can easily withhold information so that they don’t lose you or get a bad reputation in front of you. They are so good at it that no matter how much you try they will never admit to lying and add in more stories to make their lie more real and confuse you enough that you start questioning yourself.

7. They Are Misleading:

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Their power of twisting facts is multipurpose. If they come across some information they will use it in a way that it misleads you and make you feel vulnerable and alone. They do it with such expertise that you start to think that they are your only hope and support and that you are nothing without them. They break you down so that you don’t go anywhere and remain dependent on them. They make you think that people around you are your enemy and you can’t trust anyone except them. This way they isolate you from anyone else making them the only support in your life

6. They Don’t Feel Any Remorse:

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For them everything is a game which they have to win by hook or by crook. They don’t see people as people but as pawns that they can use for their own benefit. They don’t care how many people get hurt as long as they are getting what they want. They take out all the good energy from people making them feel worthless and unhappy just to serve their purpose and not once do they feel any kind of guilt or remorse in doing so.

5. They Avoid Responsibilities:

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They are very cautious and sharp minded. The second they feel like some fingers are going to get pointed at them, they twist that finger away. They would never take responsibility for any kind of mental, physical or emotional trauma that the have given to anyone stating that it was their own fault and they had nothing to do with it.

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4. They Are Very Manipulative:

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They know how to read minds and they are always on their toes manipulating you before you can point them out. They know exactly what to say to make you feel like you are the dumber one and don’t really know anything, if it was not for them, you will be a big mess without them.

3. They Are Fake Friends:

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If they are there for you in some bad situation, it’s just because they have some personal gain like gaining your trust. But as soon as things will turn for the worst, they will be gone. They will leave your hand if they think they will drown while rescuing you and if situation asks for it they would be the one to drown you for their personal gain.

2. They Steal You Work Time:

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Whenever you are in regular conversation with someone track the time limit of conversation if you say you are busy or need to be somewhere urgently. They would keep you engaged in such conversation that you won’t be able to finish the conversation and be done with work. This way they make you lose track of time creating trouble for you later.

1. They Are Controlling:

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They have to always be in control and stay sharp because they have to keep track of their lies. If they think someone else is showing interest in you or being your genuine friend, they will start controlling you and your thoughts. They will not let anyone else be in your life and think of you as their property. They would be possessive about you and try to make the other person look bad inform of you so you would stay with them and don’t divert your attention to anyone else.

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Article by Born Realist

The post 10 Warning Signs That You’re Dealing With An Evil Person appeared first on Born Realist.


Source – bornrealist.com

Lifestyle

20 Things Your Hairstyle Says About You

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According to face reading expert and author Jean Haner your facial features are not the only part of your body that represents your personality. Based on studies, your hair also plays a major part in shaping your personality.

Check out these 20 things which tells more about your hairstyle and hair color:

Image source: Shutterstock

20. Girls With Red Hair Are More Fun:

Image source: Shutterstock

Red color on its own is very apparent and bold. If you naturally have red hair or dyed your hair red it means you are a bold and adventurous person. These are the girls who loves to try out new things in life.

19. Curls Represent A Warm Heart And Fun Personality:

Image source: Shutterstock

Women with curly hair have a strong personality. They complete their tasks within the time period and are also known to be very generous.

18. Thick Wavy Hair Represents Innovation and Creativity:

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Girls who have the willpower and patience to grow out their long wavy hair also have a strong and patient personality. These girls love freedom and they like to explore new things every now and then.

17. Thick Long Hair Means Strong Will Power:

Image source: GettyImages

Grooming thick eyebrows is just like taking care of your long thick hair. Long thick hair means you are stubborn, confident and don’t give up easily.

16. If You Curl Your Straight Hair, You Are Looking For More Adventure:

Image source: Gettyimages

We love hairstyles of all kinds, but curling your straight hair is a lot more fun. If you curl your straight hair quite often then you are a positive person who loves to be optimistic.

15. If You Straighten Your Curly Hair, Your Life Is Chaotic:

Image source: Gettyimages

Girls who straighten their curled hairs are the ones who are looking for peace and calmness in their lives.

14. Medium Rough Go-To hair Means You’re A Good Thinker:

Image source: Gettyimages

Apart from being a good thinker, you are also stubborn and don’t like to waste time over petty things. You are a no fuss person and like to get things done your way.

15 Secrets About The Death Of Steve Irwin That No One Knows

13. Long Hair Means You Are Emotional:

Image source: Gettyimages

They are also more creative and sensitive towards everything in life.

12. Super Short Hair Means You’re Carefree and Don’t Fuss Over Things:

Image source: Gettyimages

Super short hair means you don’t care about what others think of you and you are a carefree person who likes to try funky hairstyles.

11. High Maintenance Hair Means You’re Super Dramatic:

Image source: Gettyimages

Doing a dramatic hairstyles requires a lot of time, that probably means you are self critical or you are a drama queen who loves to flaunt and show off.

10. A Messy Braid or Hairdo Means You Put Your Needs Last:

Image source: Gettyimages

It means you have more than one task to look after and you hardly have time for yourself. You are a multitask-er and skip making your hair most of the times.

9. A Clean Bald Head Means You’re Quite Romantic:

Image source: Gettyimages

You are a hopeless romantic who still believes in happy ever afters with your prince charming.

8. An Unconventional Haircut Means You’re Fun To Hang Out With:

Image source: Gettyimages

You are a fun and crazy girl who loves to party and stay out late. Your friends enjoy hanging out with you because of your funny and witty personality.

7. A Blunt Cut Means You Don’t Beat Around The Bush:

Image source: Gettyimages

You simple have no time to beat around the bush and you directly come to the point without wasting any time. You are known to be very straightforward.

6. If You Can Carry A Layered Cut, You’re A Perfectionist:

Image source: Gettyimages

A layered cut takes a lot of precision and likely means you are a perfectionist.

5. A Straight Hairline Means You’re A Rebel

Image source: Gettyimages

According to Chinese, a straight hairline means you like to break the rules and change them according to your own preference.

4. An Irregular Hairline Means You Had A Troubled Childhood:

Image source: Gettyimages

An uneven hairline means that you did not have a role model as a kid and you have face a lot of struggle while growing up.

3. Rounded Hairlines Girls Are Typically Good Girls:

Image source: Gettyimages

Rounded hairline means you follow the rules and are very well mannered.

2. A Widow’s Peak Means You Are Sexual

Image source: Gettyimages

You are a sex magnet and people are automatically pulled towards you because of your strong personality.

1. A Polished high Pony Tail Means You’re Goal-Oriented

Image source: Gettyimages

You are a business woman and you don’t like your hair or people coming your way. Your focus is to accomplish your goals and look professional.

Liked This? Here’s More For You To Read: Here Are 12 Color Combinations That Are Ideal For Women

Article By: Born Realist

The post 20 Things Your Hairstyle Says About You appeared first on Born Realist.


Source – bornrealist.com

Lifestyle

8 Great Tricks For Reading People’s Body Language

People are hard to communicate with. Some are generally cranky others are rude. Some just simply don’t want to interact. This is where body language steps in. Body language provides great insight about what a person is thinking or planning to do next. And let’s admit it, we all secretly want to read other people’s minds, don’t you? Without knowing, we are already picking on other’s body language and interpreting our own meaning to it. According to a research by the University of California 7% of communication comprises of words, whereas, 38% of the voice and 55% from body language. If you are able to interpret that 55% then you are way ahead of the normal people.

Image source: Shutterstock

In this article, we will teach you 8 great tricks for reading other people’s body language and knowing what it exactly means. These tricks will not only help you in interpreting someone’s next move but also in becoming a more compassionate person if used the correct way.

8. Crossed Arms And Legs Are A Sign Of Resistance:

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When people cross their arms and legs it is usually because they are feeling defensive. It is a way of telling people that you are not ready for a conversation or to open up to them. Even if a person is smiling and showing interest in your conversation their body language might be telling a different story. Researchers Gerard I. Nierenberg and Henry H. Calero conducted an experiment studying 2000 individuals and none of the people who had their arms and legs crossed agreed to the negotiations. Crossing one’s arms and legs is not intended that is why a lot of people end up crossing their arms and legs in a conversation. This is a signal that represents the person is emotionaly, physically and mentally blocked off.

7. Crinkle Eyes When The Smile is Real:

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Most people easily get away with fake compliments and fake smiles. But remember words can lie but your eyes can’t. When the person is genuinely smiling, they don’t just smile with their mouths, they smile with their eyes too. Real smiles crinkle the skin next to your eyes creating crow’s feet around them. People usually, find it easier to smile when they want to hide their feelings or emotions. So the next time if you want to detect their if smile is genuine, simply look at their eyes and you will know it.

6. Copying Your Body Language:

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Ever wondered why the person sitting next to you crossing their leg when you cross yours or tilting their head when you do yours? Chances are they are inspired by you and are really hanging on to every word you say. Copying someone’s body language is something that people do unintentionally. It is a sign that the person feels connected to you and is in tune with the conversation. Usually, it is a good sign because it tells you that the person is receiving your message well and might agree to your negotiations.

5. Notice The Posture:

Image source: Eon Productions

Have you ever felt controlled by a person’s presence without them even saying a single word? The reason is the body language. Such a person has an erect posture with broad shoulders, head up high and open gestures. Your body is wired to your brain. The more powerful you feel, your body reacts in the same way and occupies the same space. A slouching body is a sign of collapsing when you feel powerless. It does not matter if you are a leader or not, a strong posture compliments a strong personality and automatically demands respect.

4. Eyes That Lie:

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Most of us are quite familiar with the phrase, “Look in my eyes when you are talking to me.” It is said so because people assume when a person is lying they avoid eye contact. That is true in a sense, however, a person who is lying to you might intentionally look you in the eye to avoid any doubt. An easy way of detecting such people is that their eye contact will make you uncomfortable. If a person is continuously starring at you without even blinking, chances are that they are lying to you. In the need of becoming a better person you might ignore such a sign, but in all reality, it’s best to stop the person and point out their fault.

If not corrected, such people ten to take advantage of your innocence. At times it is important to give them a taste of their own medicine.

3. Raised Eyebrows Are A Sign Of Discomfort:

Image source: Shutterstock

Eyebrows are considered the most crucial part of your face. With the help of a person’s eyebrows you can easily tell the emotion they are experiencing. The three main emotions that can easily be interpreted by someone’s eyebrows are fear, worry, and shock. Raising your eyebrows during a calm and relaxed conversation is hard. If you spot someone raising their eyebrows during a normal conversation without the element of surprise or shock, you will immediately get to know that the person is lying.

Also raising no eyebrows during a conversation signals that the person is either bored or distracted. It’s important to add short constructive questions to identify whether the person is still listening or lost. Words like; You know?, You get it?. what do you think of it? helps in gaining their attention and also making the discussion more interactive.

2. Excessive Nodding Signals Unapproved Approval:

Image source: Shutterstock

Nodding during a conversation is good but excessive nodding is not. If you find someone nodding excessively during a conversation then that person is worried about your impression of them and their ability to follow the instructions. Most people who are confused or either not getting the hang of the conversation also nods their heads excessively to impart a positive impression. You can politely ask them to repeat what you just said or if you could repeat for them. Knowing when to nod during a meeting or lecture can create a positive impression and it also helps the speaker to feel comfortable in your presence.

1. A Tight Jaw Signals Stress:

Image source: Shutterstock

Furrowed brows, enlarged eyes, tilted neck and a clenched jaw are signs the person is in stress. Irrespective of what a person is trying to say if their body language represents any of these signs then that person is in discomfort or any type of stress. The key to accurately interpret the meaning of someone’s body language is to carefully observe without them noticing and it being so apparent. Reading people’s body language will help you understand them in a more compassionate way.

Usually, people are not good communicators or find hard to convey their words. If you excel in reading body language, it will greatly help you to learn to converse with people in a humane and professional manner. Reading people’s body language will not only help you in your daily life but it will also help you in making important decisions in your professional career. Knowing when your boss is in a good mood and ask for a promotion to knowing when he’s fuming red with anger and it’s best to stay 10 miles away.

Let us know if these tricks helpe you in any way in your daily to professional lives.

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Article By: Born Realist

The post 8 Great Tricks For Reading People’s Body Language appeared first on Born Realist.


Source – bornrealist.com

World

Chile Mapuche cleared of deadly Araucania arson attack

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Chile Mapuche cleared of deadly Araucania arson attack

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Thousands of ethnic Mapuche marched in the Chilean capital, Santiago in October in support of their nation's resistance against the state

A court in Chile has absolved 11 members of the Mapuche indigenous community accused of an arson attack that killed a landowner and his wife in 2013 in the southern Araucania region.

The judges said there was insufficient evidence.

The landowner, Bernard Luchsinger and his wife, Vivianne McKay had been involved in a land dispute with the Mapuche.

Tensions between the Mapuche and the state have increased in recent years.

Armed groups have been burning houses, churches, trucks and forest plantations with increasing frequency.

Eyewitnesses had said that a group of masked men attacked the house of Mr Luchsinger and his wife. Their charred bodies were later identified by relatives.

Last month eight Mapuche appeared in court in the southern city of Temucho after they were arrested on suspicion of taking part in arson attacks.

Police say they were involved in the burning of more than 50 trucks in two separate attacks on local companies in August.

A radical Mapuche group claimed responsibility and called for the release from jail of Mapuche prisoners who are being held under a controversial terrorism law.

About 600,000 Mapuche live in Chile.

Relations have been hostile since the Chilean army invaded their disputed homeland in a brutal campaign in the 1800s.


Source – bbc.com

World

Kenya’s repeat election gets green light after court collapses

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Kenya's repeat election gets green light after court collapses

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Media captionKenya's election re-run explained

Kenya will hold a controversial repeat presidential election on Thursday as planned, the head of the election commission has announced.

Uhuru Kenyatta, who is seeking a second term, won in August but the poll is being held again over irregularities.

Amid reports of unrest, he urged Kenyans to vote and remain peaceful.

Opposition candidate Raila Odinga has called on his own supporters to join him in boycotting the ballot, which he wants to hold later.

A bid to delay the election fell apart after only two out of seven Supreme Court judges showed up for a hearing.

One judge, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu, failed to appear after her bodyguard was shot and wounded by unknown gunmen on Tuesday.

  • Raila Odinga – love him or loathe him
  • Uhuru Kenyatta: Kenya's 'digital president'
  • Africa Live: More updates on this and other stories

The Supreme Court annulled the original election in August by a 4-2 majority, saying there had been "irregularities and illegalities".

Some international observers have reduced their involvement in the poll because they say the conditions are not conducive for a free and fair election.

There have been running battles between police firing tear gas and stone-throwing protesters in the city of Kisumu, an opposition stronghold.

An escalating feud

Dickens Olewe, BBC News

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Raila Odinga addressed supporters in Nairobi

At 72, Raila Odinga has essentially, once again, remodelled himself and his message. He now sees himself as leading a resistance movement against what he calls creeping authoritarianism.

Indeed some supporters of President Kenyatta have been calling on him to be a "benevolent dictator", and Mr Odinga has now made the case that he is the person to stop this tide.

The two leaders have rejected calls for them to meet and resolve what many see as a political problem.

Thursday's election will therefore not end but escalate the political battle between the Odinga and Kenyatta families, which has been going on since the country became independent.

Analysis in full

'Resistance movement'

Election commission chief Wafula Chebukati said the polls would open at 06:00 (03:00 GMT) after being given assurances by the authorities.

"Based on assurances given to this commission by the relevant authorities and security agencies… the elections as scheduled will go on tomorrow, 26 October 2017," said Mr Chebukati.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionPolice fire tear gas at protesters in Kisumu

But he also complained of threats to the electoral commission's staff and said he could not guarantee their security while at work.

In a televised address, President Kenyatta said the security forces would ensure the safety of voters on Thursday.

Urging people to vote, he said: "Our forefathers fought and died for the right of the African to vote, we dare not reject this inheritance."

In a speech in Nairobi, Mr Odinga called for "free, fair and credible elections" within 90 days.

He said: "From today we are transforming the Nasa [National Super Alliance] coalition into a resistance movement."

"Do not participate in any way in this sham election," he told cheering supporters. "Convince your friends, neighbours, and everyone else not to participate."

Reversing an earlier call for massive demonstrations, he asked people to stay at home or pray because the government was a "bloodthirsty regime" which would "massacre" them.

  • Kenya poll: A key moment for African democracy
  • Full election coverage

Earlier, Chief Justice David Maraga announced that a petition to delay the vote could not be heard because only two of the court's seven judges had shown up.

In addition to Ms Mwilu, one judge was said to be ill and receiving treatment abroad, another was out of the capital Nairobi and could not get a flight back, and two others were unavailable for undisclosed reasons.

The main opposition party says this is no coincidence and is a sign of the intimidation of the country's independent institutions, the BBC's Tomi Oladipo reports from Nairobi.

Where were the judges?

Image copyright AFP

Judges who voted to annul August poll

  • Chief Justice David Maraga – present in court
  • Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu – absent. Her bodyguard was shot by gunmen on Wednesday
  • Justice Smokin Wanjala – absent. "Unable to come to court"
  • Justice Isaac Lenaola – present

Judges who dissented, saying results should be respected

  • Justice Jackton Ojwang – absent. "Unable to come to court"
  • Justice Njoki Ndung'u – absent. Missed her flight to Nairobi

On sick leave

  • Justice Mohamed Khadhar Ibrahim – receiving treatment abroad

The government declared Wednesday a national holiday to allow people to travel to places where they are registered to vote.

Political tensions have sparked fears of unrest. After the 2007 poll, violence left over 1,600 people dead and thousands displaced.


Source – bbc.com

World

Brazil’s President Temer in hospital as corruption vote nears

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Brazil's President Temer in hospital as corruption vote nears

Image copyright EPA
Image caption President Michel Temer denies any wrongdoing

Brazil's President Michel Temer has gone to hospital for tests, as Congress is due to consider whether he should face a corruption trial.

Mr Temer's doctor diagnosed a urinary obstruction causing pain and advised the examination, the presidency said.

Prosecutors accuse Mr Temer of obstructing justice and racketeering ,which he denies.

He is expected to secure enough support in the lower chamber to survive the vote which is expected shortly.

Last week, the congressional justice committee rejected the charges.

The charges stem from a corruption case involving the world's largest meat-packing firm, JBS. Mr Temer survived a similar congressional vote in August on bribery charges.

Mr Temer can only face trial with the approval of two-thirds of the lower house of Congress.

  • A quick guide to Brazil's scandals
  • Who is the man who now leads Brazil?

He is currently facing the worst approval ratings in Brazilian history, but lawmakers seem prepared to protect him again, correspondents say.

Mr Temer became president last year following the impeachment of his predecessor, Dilma Rousseff.

She was found guilty of tampering with the government accounts in order to hide a growing deficit ahead of her re-election in 2014.


Source – bbc.com

Health

Premiums rising 34 percent for most popular health plan

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Premiums rising 34 percent for most popular health plan

The Associated Press
The Healthcare.gov website is seen on a computer screen Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017, in Washington. The Trump administration says consumers can start previewing plans and premiums online for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act in 2018. Open enrollment starts Nov. 1. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Premiums for the most popular "Obamacare" plans are going up an average of 34 percent, according to a study Wednesday that confirms dire predictions about the impact of political turmoil on consumers.

Window-shopping on HealthCare.gov went live Wednesday, so across the country consumers going online can see the consequences themselves ahead of the Nov. 1 start of sign-up season for 2018.

The consulting firm Avalere Health crunched newly released government data and found that the Trump administration's actions are contributing to the price hikes by adding instability to the underlying problems of the health law's marketplaces.

President Donald Trump puts the blame squarely on "Obamacare" saying the program is imploding, while ignoring warnings that his administration's actions could make things worse.

The Avalere analysis is for the 39 states using HealthCare.gov. Along with the increase for silver plans, premiums also are going up by double digits for different levels of coverage, including bronze (18 percent), gold (16 percent), and platinum (24 percent).

Many states had higher increases. Avalere found that average plan silver premiums will go up by 49 percent in Florida, 43 percent in Missouri, and 65 percent in Wyoming.

Consumers eligible for income-based tax credits will be protected from rising premiums but those who pay full-cost face a second consecutive year of sharp premium increases.

Only three states will see declines — Alaska, Arizona, and North Dakota.

Avalere said market instability is driven by Trump's recent decision to end subsidy payments to insurers, the continued debate over "Obamacare" repeal and replace, and a presidential executive order that could open a path for lower cost plans outside of the Obama-era law.

"You put all that together, and there are a lot of additional forces on top of market forces driving high premium increases for 2018," said Chris Sloan, a senior manager with the health industry consulting firm.

Significant increases also are expected in states that run their own health insurance websites.

Starting Nov. 1, new customers can submit applications, and returning ones can make changes to their coverage. Open enrollment will end early, on Dec. 15, about half the time allotted under Barack Obama's administration.

Sign-up season comes after the president abruptly pulled the plug on federal payments that reimburse insurers for reduced copays and deductibles they're required to provide to people of modest means. That exposes insurers to a potential $1 billion loss for the remainder of this year.

A federal judge in San Francisco on Wednesday denied a request by state attorney's general to order the payments immediately restored. Administration officials say the payments were not properly approved by Congress and Trump is following the U.S. Constitution by denying them.

Bipartisan legislation to resolve the problem is pending, and the Congressional Budget Office on Wednesday said the bill would reduce federal deficits and have no major impact on coverage. But the legislation by Sens. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., and Patty Murray, D-Wash. faces an uncertain future. Trump has sent mixed signals about whether he would support it.

Restoring the funds may have little immediate impact on 2018 premiums, but the bill calls for insurers to rebate money to the government and consumers if they collect too much.

Avalere's Sloan said that consumers who receive subsidized premiums would generally be protected from premium increases.

That's not the case, however, for an estimated 7 million unsubsidized customers, most of whom buy individual plans outside the government markets.

"There is a danger that middle-class people who don't get government help in paying their premiums could be increasingly priced out of the market," said Larry Levitt of the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation.

About 10 million people currently have private health insurance through government-sponsored markets like HealthCare.gov. More than 8 in 10 customers receive tax credits to help pay their premiums, and that aid is still available despite the political turmoil.

Unlike the Obama years, the Trump administration has set no enrollment goal for 2018.

"We are really focused on having a smooth consumer experience," said Randy Pate, director of the HHS office that oversees the program. "That is our target for this year."

Administration officials say they have made a series of improvements to the sign-up process unheeded in the acrimonious political debate over health care.

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Online – https://www.healthcare.gov/get-coverage/

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Source – abcnews.go.com