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The Hound of Hounslow (How an Autist Broke the Market)
On May 6, 2010, Jim Cramer’s brain broke. “That is not a real price,” he yelled to his monitor. “OK? That is not a real price.” Proctor & Gamble had just fallen 25% in a manner of minutes, then 29%, then 31%. Cramer had never seen such a shiny knife, such a beautiful buy, and he searched frantically for the right camera to beg his followers to add PG to their portfolio. There weren’t enough buttons on Cramer’s soundboard to fully capture how he felt about the quickest drop in Dow Jones history. In what would later be dubbed “The Crash of 2:45” or simply “The Flash Crash,” over a trillion dollars was wiped from the stock market in a manner of 15 minutes. The odd thing was, despite dropping more than 9% at one point, the market would rapidly recover a bit after 3 PM and would close only 3% lower for the day. In the ensuing days and weeks, journalists and financial commentators and United States Congressmen would try and determine where this volatility had come from. Something weird had just happened. # In the investigations that followed, regulators would consider a couple of theories. Was this a “fat-finger trade” where a trader inadvertently placed a large sell order, triggering a domino effect of sorts where algos would in turn sell? Was this a well-coordinated cyberattack, aimed to cripple American institutions? Was it simply a dip exacerbated by high-frequency traders? Had Janet Yellen forgotten to change the printer toner? Nobody knew. But five months after the flash crash, the SEC and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) released a joint report that on May 6, 2010 the market was “so fragmented and fragile that a single large trade could send stocks into a sudden spiral.” They stated that a group called Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. had inadvertently played a role in the crash by initiating a sale of 75,000 E-Mini S&P contracts ($4.1 billion total) as a hedge to an existing position. This, the report said, coupled with the high-frequency traders trying to sell the long futures contracts they had just picked up from Waddell & Reed, led to a game of “hot potato” where the contracts were resold to other HFTs. The report though was leaving out a crucial player. # In 2005, Navinder Sarao was living the dream. At 27 years old, he still lived with his parents in Hounslow, a working-class suburb outside of London, demanding tendies to be delivered to his bedroom by his sweet emigrant mother. To the people who knew him, Navinder, or Nav, was known to be quick-witted and quick to anger. He was dominant at Halo and FIFA, and he had a proclivity to focus on one task for hours and hours on end until he mastered it. He was almost obsessive in his interests. Despite still living with his parents, young Nav had aspirations. In 2006, he responded to an ad in the Evening Standard that read, “Wanted: futures traders. Must work well under pressure.” That’s it. That was the ad. And Nav, with no experience and a honey mustard-stained tie, went to the FutexLive headquarters—a drab office situated above a supermarket 45 minutes outside London—and successfully hid his Asperger’s and got the job. He was now a professional trader. Nav picked things up quickly. Realizing that he was surrounded by day-trading retards, he moved his desk to the corner of the shabby trading floor and bought a pair of noise-canceling headphones. He’d found success trading E-mini S&P Futures, which is the primary futures trading vehicle for the S&P 500. And with his noise-canceling headphones, Nav would follow the orders that would enter and leave the markets. His coworkers would marvel at the autist in the corner and the returns he was regularly pulling in. Then 2008 happened. By the time the financial crisis was in full swing, Nav was almost thirty and had decided to leave Futex. He had accumulated $2 million from his trades the last couple of years, and he figured the most prudent move as a budding millionaire was to set up his command center in his bedroom. He still lived with his parents. # Nav realized something early on in the mortgage crisis that not everyone else did. He realized that governments would be forced to step in and save these retarded institutions, and he knew the banks wouldn’t be allowed to fall. And he bet $2 million—his whole net worth at the time—that he would be right. He made this bet on a Friday, and the following Monday, George Bush announced the TARP plan. Prices proceeded to recover 19% over the next couple of weeks, and Nav rode the wave and turned his $2 million into $15 million. Did he rest on his laurels? Fuck no, this kid’s retarded! Nav didn’t want a wife and a home with a couple of kids running around. He wanted GLORY. # Around 2010, the markets were seeing an influx in high-frequency trading, and Nav took personal insult to these robots. People were getting scalped by these algos, and those scalps belonged to Nav. Those profits were rightfully his. In order to beat the robots, Nav decided to build his own robot. And unsurprisingly, fueled by Code Red and autism, Nav’s algo worked magnificently. Pretty soon, he was regularly pulling in half a million a day. All the while living in a cramped bedroom of his parents’ home that cost $300,000. # May 6, 2010, started out as a regular day for Nav. The markets were sliding a bit, and Jim Cramer was flailing about his studio as though he were fighting a cloud of bats, but this was roughly on par for the time. Nav’s algo was pumping E-mini sell orders into the market—$200 million worth of orders to be exact—which ultimately resulted in a loss of liquidity (don’t ask me how this worked, I’m still confused why my PLTR 12/11 40C aren’t printing). At around 1:40 EST, or 6:40 in Hounslow, his mother called from the bottom of the steps to inform Nav that din-din was ready and would he please come down. So Nav logged off. And exactly one minute after that, the market began to fall at a rate that had never seen before. Nav had no idea though; he was in an argument with his father about why he needed to chew with his mouth open in order to let the scalding tendy fumes out. A trillion dollars had been wiped from American markets, and the instigator of it all was too retarded to know what he’d done. The tendies were good though. # The trillion-dollar loss turned out to be not that big of a deal. The DOW snapped back from the 9% freefall like a rubber band, like any stock that Andrew Left has deemed to be a casino. But the NYSE and NASDAQ officials proceeded to meet over the next couple of months to try and determine what caused the nosedive and rapid recovery. In the reports that they would write, regulators made no reference to manipulation and no reference to Nav. In fact, he wasn’t even aware there was an investigation going on. He wasn’t aware he did anything wrong. But regulators eventually began to notice that Nav was canceling a lot of orders. The CFTC sent him an email and asked if he could explain what he’d been up to. What was the reason for his canceling an obscene number of orders? That’s what big banks did. And that’d usually be fine and all, but Nav was a singular trader and that made it suspicious. Nav wrote back to the CFTC explaining in careful terms that he had nothing to apologize for and that the CFTC could kiss his ass. He actually sent that. He told the CFTC to kiss his ass. Which, in hindsight, might’ve been a bad idea but the regulators were still too stupid and boomery to charge him with anything at the time. Nav would’ve gotten away with it too if it weren’t for a blabbermouth desk trader in Chicago who months later reported a different block of Nav’s trades to the CFTC, rekindling the case against Nav. The investigation and case were dragged out over months and years, and I know 99% of you were too impatient to get this far, so I’ll give the cliff notes for the rest. Basically, Nav would eventually be charged with “spoofing,” which is the purchase of a large block of orders with the intent to cancel them. Spoofing artificially drives prices higher or lower. So the FBI and other concerned parties showed up on the doorstep of Nav’s Hounslow townhome in 2015, and he was extradited to the U.S. The judge learned he was worth $50 million, so he set bail to $7.5 million. Curiously enough though, Nav couldn’t access the $50 million or pay bail, and it was later determined that he’d somehow lost the fortune, seemingly to various shady investment advisors who promised to keep his money safe. (I personally like to think he’s stashed his earnings into a Caribbean account and that he’ll return to his private island once things blow over) Over the next couple of months, Nav worked with investigators and taught them how market abuse happens. He was diagnosed with Asperger’s by a prison doctor, and the judge, sensing the moral dilemma of incarcerating an autist, and sensing Nav had received punishment enough from being scammed out of his $50 million, recommended a year of house arrest. So Nav is currently serving his year of house arrest in the same bedroom where he amassed $50 million. But now he’s penniless at 41. TLDR: Some autist beats the system, but the casino is angry and creates new rules to retroactively punish him for his winnings.
The Pretty Idiot's Guide to Human Space: Rugen (part 1)
The salvo of coilgun shells smashes into the complex of bunkers on the opposite riverbank, sending a spray of charred dirt, sandbags, and timber flying into the air. A sloped bastion caves in, burying the rifle pits at its base. One leg of a watchtower is blasted away and the whole thing sways drunkenly before twisting and collapsing across the trenches, the flagpole on its roof somehow landing upright and leaving the enemy's blue-and-gold standard waving in the debris-laden breeze. The Human artillerymen beside me let out a cheer and jump up and down, slapping each other's outstretched hands. The army of Humans watching from beyond the battery all jump around and cheer, too, their yells loud even compared to a half-dozen high explosive shells. And... so do the Human gunners on the hillside across the river, and the army behind them. They all cheer and applaud. Even though they are, in fact, the enemy whose defenses are getting blasted into pieces the size of a poet's paycheck by the aforementioned coilguns. So... I cheer my lovely green head off right along with them, because things are exploding and stuff is burning and apparently the Humans on this planet just generally approve of that sort of thing. My name is Solontha reValthinna, and I'm the Felra who goes to the places nobody else wants to and learns about them the hard way so you can learn about them the easy way. That's my angle as an author, and that's why I'm the Pretty Idiot. ---- "Solontha, darling, I've got just the destination for your next Pretty Idiot's Guide!" My business agent only sounds that chirpy when she's found some new way to try to get me killed. I'd like to think it's because the more trouble I get into, the better the resulting books turn out. That, or she still hasn't forgiven me for that topless dance I did at the Publishers' Guild dinner party she took me to. In my defense, they provided the liquor. I just happened to drink a lot of it. Also in my defense, my topless dancing is godlike. "Not back to the Tarq Imperium, I hope? They said they'd shoot me if they ever caught me inside their borders again." My agent clucked at me. "They said no such thing. They just heavily implied it. And that was only because you wrote that they were a bunch of pointlessly brutal totalitarian fuckwads." I snorted. "That's right. And it was the 'fuckwad' part that they objected to." "Nobody likes being called a fuckwad, Solontha. Fuckwads least of all. But, no, I'm thinking we send you to write about a Human planet this time." Humans? Interesting... The few I've known, I've mostly liked. Well, I don't hate them, anyway. And they look kind of like us Felra, at least a little bit. If you took a Felra and eliminated everything behind her forelegs -- and kept her from dying from lack of some important organs, obviously -- you would have something that still doesn't look particularly like a Human. So, dye her green skin an earthier color, replace her beautiful tresses of feathery-branching tvan with coarser, single-stranded hair, remove one pair of breasts, and take a digit from each hand. She still doesn't look quite Human. Make her face a bit rounder and flatter, thicken her bone structure, and Congratulations! You've surgically converted a Felra into something that could possibly maybe pass for a Human in really poor lighting. Also, you're a sick fuck for doing such a thing. Point being, Humans are sufficiently similar enough to us that they can be cute, in a goofy bipedal sort of way. And immersing yourself in an alien culture can be more rewarding if you can also immerse yourself in some attractive alien nookie along the way. Any aspiring travel writers who are reading this can consider that a pro-tip from the Pretty Idiot. "So, any particular Human world? Somewhere with casinos, maybe? Or some place run by the Church of Giving Money, Liquor, and Carnal Pleasure to Sexy Alien Visitors?" That last bit caught my agent off-guard. "Is that an actual religion?" "If it was, do you think I'd still be working?" "Of course you would. You love travel, trouble, and remunerated smart-assery too much to just quit." Ah, I'm such a lucky Felra. Most agents charge extra for that kind of quality banter. "The place I've got in mind for you is Rugen, a frontier-level colony world well off the outer fringe of the Arm." "The tail-tip of nowhere, in other words. And what's the attraction for a Pretty Idiot to play tourist there? Societal collapse? Rampaging Felra-eating predators? Pandemic-level clown outbreak?" "How about the longest-running ongoing war in the Known Galaxy? Two hundred eighty-seven common years and no end in sight." Yow. I'm passingly familiar with war, having wandered through five or six of varying size and awfulness while sightseeing -- and writing about said sightseeing -- and three centuries is a lot of war, especially confined to one planet. I could only imagine how that could twist and scar a world and its people. The devastation. The tragedy of wasted lives and resources. The sheer dysfunctionality of societies raised for generation after generation on bitter vengeance and the never-ending march towards victory and a peace they can no longer even properly conceptualize. A world of bloodlust, paranoia, and the threat of sudden brutal death staining every moment of every day. Why, the possibilities for misery were endless. It sounded perfect for a vacation getaway. ---- I took regular commercial liners as far as Thielbarra, but had to buy passage from there to Rugen on an independent freighter that was slightly more reputable than a spaceport prostitute, just not as hygienic. There were only three other passengers headed to my destination, including a Kreevin botanical researcher who ignored everybody and a not-very-sober Zharg who worked for one of the big interstellar communications providers and who must have fucked up his job just badly enough to get sent to an isolated hole-in-the-void posting, but not quite badly enough to be fired. I ended up sharing a cabin with the only other quadruped, an adorably optimistic Iraitrian missionary who was going to Rugen to set up a temple to the Harmonious Gods and try to get a congregation going. Being the cynical agnostic wretch that I am, I just had to ask how much demand she thought there would be for a doctrine of cooperative religious pacifism in the middle of a war zone. "You offer food to the starving, not to those with bellies already full," she told me. "Our beliefs are meant to be applied in the world, not just agreed with in the temple." And did she expect to end the war all by herself? "I hope to make a difference to someone. Whether it's by teaching the Way, by being an example, or just by offering a person who needs it a roof, a meal, and a sympathetic ear. If even one person considers their life to be better for having known me, my mission will be worthwhile." Damn. I had been entertaining myself with the idea of flirting mercilessly with her for the whole trip, but all that earnestness. All that simple, undeniable goodness. Even my cynicism and libido combined couldn't look that in the face. So I flirted with the ship's captain, instead. Not that there was any real challenge in it, as despite Felra not being four-armed lizard people, Jixavan males are completely enamored of our tails, which are both more voluptuous and generally more exposed than those of their own females. Pro-tip from the Pretty Idiot: if you're a Felra and need to manipulate a Jixavan guy, buy one of those tail-stockings their women wear. Even the biggest ones will be too tight and short for you, so cut a bunch of slashes in it and pull it as far up your tail as it will go. Then wear a skirt short enough to expose the top hem of the tail-stocking and enjoy your newfound powers of persuasion. I ended up getting twenty percent off my fare and three marriage proposals. Captain Akothin had made a few runs to Rugen before, so I was able to ask him some questions about the place. If you've never read one of my Pretty Idiot's Guides before, part of my schtick, if you will, is lack of prior research regarding the places I go. My self-imposed limitation is that I can only obtain information by seeing for myself or asking someone with firsthand experience. No encyclopedias or hyperweb research. That media stuff is, at best, quarter-truths and agenda-driven grazershit, anyway. By going into a place without 'knowledge' of it, I go with fewer preconceptions. That's the 'Idiot' part of the title. The 'Pretty' part is because I am. And if you have to face life as an idiot, it really does help to be a pretty one. The good captain had never actually made planetfall on Rugen, always conducting business from orbit. Sensible. Boring, but sensible. I therefore confined my inquiries to spacers' matters. Like, were we going to have any issues with pirates or paramilitaries on our way in-system? "No pirates. Not enough shipping in or out for those guys to make a living raiding it and too far from any active lanes to make a useful base. Pirates operating across star systems have to really watch their fuel expenditures." Captain Akothin then proceeded to give a suspiciously well-considered dissertation on how to turn a profit in space piracy, which I will not share here but have filed away for future reference should too many of my books bomb on the market. And as for paramilitary ships affiliated with the warring factions? "I've never seen any." What about orbital defenses? Would there be minefields to be tensely navigated? Would we be subject to stop-and-search by military patrol craft? "Rugen's a frontier-level system." The captain looked at me like I was a moron, albeit a moron with an incredibly sexy and distracting tail. "There ain't even a transshipment station, just a few cheapo weather and comm satellites. I just put the ship in a parking orbit and they send shuttles up. But it's not like the shipments are ever so big you'd need an orbital dock anyway, and shuttles are fine for passengers. Of course, that also means no orbital repair yard and no fuel depot, but that's not much worry since Rugen is just a long detour off our Thielbarra-to-Rialto route and I always do a refuel and refit at Thielbarra for safety's sake and, um, will you marry me?" ---- The shuttle ride down was as uneventful as such things generally are and afforded a chance to take in the view of Rugen from medium-high orbit. It was not a particularly exciting planet seen from 18,000 miles above its equator -- under the sparse clouds, some smallish seas, broad smears of iron-red in the right places to be deserts, accented by patches and streamers of an odd green that was almost an indecisive blue, and some blink-and-you'd-miss-them polar caps. But the thing is, it doesn't make a damn bit of difference how many planets you've seen out the porthole, or how much of an undifferentiated dirtball the one below you is. There is no such thing as 'ordinary' when it comes to the sight of a whole damn world suspended in space right in front of you. It's a moment of magic, every single time, and anybody who says otherwise is lying, or is a soulless shithead. Or, since those aren't mutually exclusive, they could be both, like a corporate journalist or a Rybathi. I used the flight time to mentally review what firsthand knowledge of Humans I possessed. Pro-tip-slash-caveat: members of a species often behave very differently in their own polities than they do in foreign or more cosmopolitan settings. Expatriates or visitors to your world are typically trying to get along in your society and tend to adjust their behavior accordingly. Their behavior when they are in the majority and they get to decide what's normal may be radically different. That said, there were a few truths I felt comfortable in ascribing to Humans in general based on experience. For starters, sexual dimorphism. Humans born biologically male or female remain that sex, unless medically altered. Females are usually smaller and are the ones with slightly inadequate breasts. Males tend to be bigger, stronger, and coarser-looking and, like most mammaloid males, have completely inadequate breasts. This dimorphism leads to the most basic social structures being built around male-female pairings and their offspring -- family -- rather than the looser pack-based structure of Felra. These family structures appear to have a relationship similar to, though vastly more complicated than, the Felra mother-daughter bond. Basically, if you wrong a Human, you may face retribution not just from her, but from her entire bloodline. Except sometimes you won't, because, like I said, complicated. Second, though many Galactics tend to use the terms 'Human' and 'Terran' as synonyms, Humans emphatically do not. Among Humans, the word 'Terran' refers specifically to an inhabitant of the Terran Commonwealth, the oldest, largest, and apparently most detested Human stellar nation. Humans who are not Commonwealth natives tend to have negative reactions to being called 'Terrans'. In this context, the term 'negative reactions' seems to cover a range from 'cold and profane verbal correction' to 'assault with a power-nailer'. Maybe this trip would offer a chance to find out why that might be? I'd also been told that actual Terrans react poorly to being called 'Human', though I've never met any Commonwealth Terrans and can't say for sure if that's true. Third, Humans tend to be territorial, and therefore possessive. They have a strong impulse to guard things they have laid claim to. Don't try to make use of anything a Human regards as their own without asking permission first, even if you intend to give it right back. This impulse extends quite strongly to their romantic or sexual partners as well and attempting to bed, or even flirt with, a Human who has been claimed by another will tend to be met with hostility. You could try asking for permission, I guess, but that just seems to lead to socially awkward hostility. And if you don't know why socially awkward hostility is worse than the regular kind, then obviously you've never been in a fistfight with a drunken Dahu who was sporting a clingy wet kilt and a massive erection. next **** More Known Galaxy stories
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The Bollywood film ‘Dhoom’ (2004), misinterpreted as an action thriller, is in fact a rigorous allegorical analysis of economic policies, particularly in the Indian context in the early ‘00s.
Spoilers ahead. Connoisseurs of film are undoubtedly well-aware of La Nouvelle Vague, aka, the ‘New Wave’—an experimental movement in filmmaking with its origins in the French cinema of the 1950s, with an emphasis on exploration of personal themes such as existentialism, iconoclasm and absurdism. Although the ‘New Wave’ is considered to have met its chronological end in the late 1960s, to be followed by successive movements like ‘New Hollywood’, ‘Cinema Novo’ and ‘Dogme 95’, the influence of la nouvelle vague continues to be keenly felt in the artistic masterpieces of Bollywood production house YRF. Under the skillful hand of renowned auteur Aditya Chopra, the studio has produced a lineup of commercially successful arthouse flicks that continue the French filmmaking renaissance of the ‘50s, successfully infusing avant-garde storytelling techniques with high production values and modern Indian themes. Nowhere is this revolutionary vision more evident than in films like DDLJ (a masterpiece in abstract, absurdist storytelling), Mohabbatein (a sensitive examination of the taboo topic of attitudes towards adolescent self-gratification), Kal Ho Naa Ho (an ambitious adaptation of historian David McCullough’s book 1776), Jab Tak Hai Jaan (a religio-philosophical drama that engages in debate upon the tenets of Christianity, Shaivism, and the cultural taboo of Kala Pani) and, of course, the Dhoom franchise. As YRF’s most popular franchise, the Dhoom series has, with each installment, made great independent strides in cinematic theory and practice. Although—as read above—YRF films explore a wide, varying range of topics as a whole, the Dhoom franchise focuses exclusively on the examination and discussion of economic and socio-economic matters of policy and practice in the Indian context. Over the course of 3 films, the discourse acquires a rich depth, with the analysis of issues including the economic costs and benefits of national highway construction, the clash between entrepreneurial aspirations and the security of bureaucratic employment, the 2008 economic recession in the BRICS context, and the causes and consequences of non-performing bank loans and a profiling of defaulters of on said loans. Indeed, a first course on Indian economics at any prestigious institution may well be framed around careful viewing and discussion of the Dhoom films. In the careful hands of Aditya Chopra and Vijay Krishna Acharya (Dhoom 1/2/3, Tashan, Thugs of Hindostan), each Dhoom film achieves a delicate balance between the overt cops-and-robbers heist story and the covert exploration of complex economic schools of thought. As the 1st film in the franchise, Dhoom (2004) establishes the storytelling framework for the films to come, and by itself explores the challenges and opportunities presented by Indian economic policymaking in the early ‘00s. The film features an all-round star-studded cast, with support from Honorary Roadie & Stardust Awards nominee Esha Deol, Star’s Sabsey Award winner Rimi Sen, and Indian Telly Award nominee Arav Chowdharry. At the film’s helm are Lions Club Award winner John Abraham, Sansui Award winner Abhishek Bachchan, and Emmy nominee Uday Chopra. Series regulars Bachchan and Chopra play Jai and Ali respectively, Jai being a policeman and Ali a small-time mechanic with a penchant for fast bikes and disinterested women. Abraham essays the villainous role of Kabir, part-time restaurant waiter and part-time leader of a gang of biker thieves. The film begins with a series of daring heists pulled off by Kabir’s gang, relying on their high-speed bikes to orchestrate sudden thefts and promptly escape the scene soon after. Their exploits catch the eye of Jai, a lifetime appointee to the post of Assistant Commissioner of Police. Jai, however, finds himself out of his depth and through a series of accidents, makes the acquaintance of Ali, a mildly-seedy mechanic and bike racer. Initially reluctant to be associated with law enforcement, Ali is eventually induced to join Jai’s cause and attempt to chase down Kabir and his merry band of men. Dhoom is slow and deliberate in its setup, and the film’s early minutes are heavy on subtext and detail, therefore, it is essential to take in the plot in small increments, so as to be thorough with one’s analysis. In an allegorical sense, Jai, as a police officer, represents bureaucratic authority and the security, comforts and powers of government employment. Abraham’s Kabir, as a thief, is a laissez-faire capitalist, relying on his material advantage in the form of fast bikes and his manpower advantage in the form of skilled bikers to partake in a series of one-sided transactions with economic entities such as banks and government funds. In this sense, the act of robbery in Dhoom is merely a transaction between two private parties wherein one side gains an unfair amount at the other’s expense, absent external interventionism. In addition to being a free-market advocate, Kabir is also an employee at a pizza parlour, which seems to be the film’s attempt at exploring both the growing role of the service economy as a share of India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and the amorphous nature of employment within the modern ‘gig’ economy. Caught between the competing ideas of state-control and free capitalism, Chopra’s Ali is a stand-in for the directionless youth, lured by the safety and dignity of a government job, whilst simultaneously seduced by the potential for greater wealth presented by free-market capitalism. The film’s plot is overt in this depiction, with Ali simultaneously fearful of Jai’s authority, yet desirous of wielding said authority as an employed policeman. Furthermore, in an action sequence set in Mumbai’s Chor Bazaar—a flea market specializing in illegally-hawked goods—Jai and Ali get into a fight with goons in the market, and are forced to make a hasty escape after being outnumbered. Ali bringing Jai to the market illustrates his ties to the informal, underground economy—a large, undocumented component of the Indian economy—and Jai’s subsequent fleeing the scene highlights the failed outcome of government attempts to regulate this grey economy by force and bluster. Initially at a loss for clues, Jai is eventually able to deduce that Kabir’s bikers arrange their heists in close proximity to highways, providing as the highways do quick getaways after. This is no doubt an allusion to the economic importance of the National Highways Authority of India’s flagship ‘Golden Quadrilateral’ national highway construction project. Kabir, the raw capitalist, is empowered in his capitalistic pursuits by the government’s infrastructure investments, and John Abraham’s moody expression throughout the film is in no small part perhaps due to the discontentment within Kabir’s mind about his enterprise’s dependence on resources provided by the state. Having deduced Kabir’s MO, Jai and Ali attempt to catch him in the act. However, Kabir and his gang appear to have substantially faster bikes than Jai and Ali, which is undoubtedly an allusion to the government’s perceived ineptitude and inability to generally compete with private enterprise. Left chafing and chasing the dust, Jai catches a lucky break when an overconfident Kabir offers him a clue about his upcoming crime, with the catch being that if Jai fails to avert it, he must recuse himself from the case and leave Kabir to his entrepreneurial pursuits. Kabir, the staunch capitalist, is here hinting at the idea of termination clauses in Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs), agreements between enterprises and governments for mutual benefit. Whilst the government naturally retains the right to sever the partnership at any point, Kabir clearly believes that he, as the private party, is also entitled to terminate the contract should the government, aka Jai, default on the agreed-upon terms. Formally known as the ‘Authority Default’ concept, Dhoom represents this idea in the form of a simple, easy to understand challenge between Jai and Kabir. Even as this layered conflict plays out between Jai and Kabir, Ali is enamoured by the mysterious ‘Dilbara’ (Esha Deol). Little is known about Dilbara, however, like other characters in the film, it may be reasonably assumed than she is also an allegorical depiction of an economic concept. Ali’s infatuation with her suggests that she is perhaps intended to be portrayed as a vague, undefined avenue of aspirational employment. Furthermore, the fact that she (as is later revealed) is in fact a part of Kabir’s gang, yet also harbours feelings for Ali, leads one to conclude that Dilbara represents a form of compromise between dirigisme, aka restrictive state-controlled economy, and laissez-faire anarcho-capitalism. The filmmakers leave the specifics of this compromise vague, however, Dilbara’s skimpy outfits perhaps represent the scantiness of opportunities presented by this nebulous alternative. Returning to the main plot, Jai, despite being forewarned, fails to foil Kabir’s next robbery, despite being able to take down one of his gang in the process. Left short of a gang member, Kabir attempts to recruit Ali, left sidelined by Jai following their failure to catch Kabir. The jilted Ali readily embraces Kabir’s neoliberal worldview and the duo jet off to Goa, where Kabir has his eyes set on one final score from a casino. Subtextually, the casino and gambling in general represent what is in Kabir’s eyes an essential component of his brand of capitalism—rampant speculation and volatility that may be manipulated to one’s benefit. There may also be an addition reference to British academic Susan Strange’s seminal 1986 work Casino Capitalism, a critique of unregulated banking and financial systems. However, Kabir is more likely than not to be derisive of such thoughts, and therefore, if this reference was intended, it may merely be made to indicate the filmmakers’ complete mastery over both Keynesian and Austrian schools of economic thought. The importance of dance numbers in YRF films cannot be overstated. Even as Bollywood music gravitates towards being little more than catchy jingles designed to elicit maximum publicity, the music and dance numbers in YRF films complement the plot perfectly, serving to both entertain and narrate. Dhoom is no exception to this tradition of excellence. On the eve of Kabir’s final heist, an inebriated Jai shows up at the casino, claiming to have left police employment and moved on. Kabir, however, is rightly suspicious, given as Jai is still a cop, and is merely attempting to lure Kabir into a false sense of comfort as a prelude to catching him in the act. This Jai accomplishes by putting on a song-and-dance in front of Kabir to convince him of his abandonment of state-sponsored socialism and his embrace of Kabir’s unrestrained capitalism. The song is entitled ‘Salamee’, a clever homophone of ‘salami’, a sausage that consists primary of beef. The consumption of beef was, in a landmark 2005 Supreme Court judgement, forbidden on grounds on anti cow-slaughter laws. Kabir, as an opponent of government intervention, would likely have been opposed to the idea of such a restriction being imposed upon him. Therefore, to show his solidarity to the cause, Jai takes to the stage in front of Kabir and sways to the refrain of “Naye kal ko aao kare, hum karein, karein/Salami, salami, salami/Kar le salami…”. The subterfuge is apparently successful, and a placated Kabir is lulled into a false sense of security by Jai’s reinforcement of his worldview. However, as mentioned, Jai’s conversion is little more than a ruse, and a hoodwinked Kabir is successfully caught in the act by Jai and Ali, who is revealed to have been Jai’s mole all along. The ever-slippery Kabir, however, weasels his way out of Jai’s clutches, and flees with his loot. Although Dhoom 3 would better address the phenomenon of loan defaulters taking flight from the verge of captivity, Dhoom too takes a cursory look at the occurrence, although Kabir does not quite embody a loan defaulter. He is merely the free-market capitalist, the robber baron caught flouting regulations and fleeing from the consequences of government intervention. A long chase sequence ensues, with Kabir fleeing but ultimately cornered by Jai and Ali at the precipice of a sea-facing cliff. Facing a choice between certain captivity and death, Kabir chooses to fly off the cliff with the last of his loot. In a literal sense, Kabir merely dies by falling off the cliff into the sea. In a figurative sense, faced with the prospect of his enterprise being forced to comply with ungainly regulations, Kabir chooses instead to offshore his business, and make for better waters, thus bringing his character arc to a natural and satisfying conclusion. A frustrated Jai bemoans his end, representing the government’s exasperation at ultimately failing to bring a rogue enterprise to heel. Ali, having seen his capitalistic expectations dive off a cliff with Kabir, chooses in the film’s final shot, to finally pursue the path to safe, steady, state-sponsored employment after all, asking Jai if he finally is a bona-fide police officer, as the film fades to black. The topical nature of Dhoom is a cause for admiration, even a decade and a half after its release. The film successfully ties together strands of economic and socio-economic thought from its time—the ‘Golden Quadrilateral’ project received a major fillip in the first years of the new millennium, the service sector encountered a boom around the same time, as did the contribution of outsourcing to employment and economic growth. The rise of men like Kabir is perfectly timed in the post-License Raj years, as the country embraced capitalism over state socialism. Yet, the lure of stable, ‘safe’ government employment holds true, and powers men like Jai and seduces men like Ali. Dilbara’s unknown fate at the end of the film—left waiting for Ali by the side of a road—is representative of the uncertain outcomes of economic models with time. On a meta note, the Dhoom franchise’s casting of Abhishek Bachchan and Uday Chopra in every film is a nod to the ‘Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act’ of 2005, a flagship government initiative that guarantees employment for a certain number of days out of the year, in the form of unskilled labour. In summation, Dhoom rightly deserves its place as a seminal film in the annals of both YRF and Indian cinema. In its own right, it is a bold, experimental film that marries erudition to entertainment. It is also the progenitor of its celebrated franchise, providing the springboard from which future films would explore similar issues in an equally deft and precise fashion. To YRF, the Dhoom franchise, and Indian cinema, the film Dhoom is nothing short of a bottle of nitrous oxide, that when attached to a bike, propels it into the stratosphere.
Polo shirts are possibly the most ubiquitous clothing item of the 21st century, undergoing a long journey from aspirational 1930s sportswear to becoming the default smart-casual option for millions of men. We’ve researched and tested 14 of the best polo shirts and think that the best polo is the Sunspel Riviera with its great fit, unique fabric and strong range of over twenty colours. If you’re looking for an elevated take on the polo then the John Smedley Adrian Polo is incredibly soft and will smarten up your wardrobe. Finally, if you’re on a budget the H&M Cotton Polo Shirt is a good quality take on the classic item at an affordable price point. The original garment as we know it was based on a design worn by French tennis star René Lacoste aka “the Crocodile” in the 1930s as a practical, flexible, comfortable sports shirt. Unfortunately, from the 1980s onwards, creeping “casual Friday” dress codes made the polo shirt with badly fitting chinos an American business-standard. Later, it was the uniform of golfers and delivery drivers, security guards, and coffee chain staff not to mention the sometime uniform of the American far-right, in almost a parody of conformity. What saves the polo shirt from fashion irrelevance is its potential for reinvention. Its been reclaimed by subcultures ranging from punks to skinheads and mods. As the tie disappears and the suit becomes increasingly relaxed, the polo shirt has become a place to experiment with shirting alternatives and continues its long tradition of reinvention, molding itself to the zeitgeist. For our review we tried to cover this range, from semi-activewear to knit-fabric classics to find the best polo shirt overall, looking as always at specialists who’ve produced these styles year after year in an attempt to find an ideal.
Sunspel Riviera Polo With a smart fit, retro-inspired basket weave fabric, and a huge range of tasteful colours, the Riviera is on its way to becoming a contemporary classic. $105
The Riveria was introduced by Sunspel in 2006 after a design by Linda Hemmings for the James Bond film Casino Royale. The Riviera became something of an instant classic for a brand which up until then had been known largely for its undergarments. The references here (as the name suggests) are much more Talented Mr.Ripley than contemporary sportswear but it doesn’t feel like a period piece either. There has been some clever thought put into taking the best of that golden era and updating it. The fabric has a looser, wider weave than most piqué polos, and a nice spongy texture with none of the coarseness that some piqué can have. After researching I found that the brand created the fabric with a vintage lace making machine in Sunspel’s HQ in Nottingham, and none of the competition I tried have a similar quality. The fit is trim but not overly slim. The sleeves fall flatteringly halfway down the bicep, the length is standard and it has the classic split tail. The sleeves didn’t pull up into my armpits and I still had movement through the body. The collar is a fairly small point collar that sits well when buttoned up but also folds down easily into a camp collar shape when undone which allowed it to be worn cleanly both ways. The buttons are a discreet tonal plastic and the placket is a simple 2‑button design. I’m a fan of the pocket design though in a practical sense it’s not good for much and makes the shirt much more of a casual style. Colours are another area where Sunspel gets it just right. They always have a strong seasonal palette which this year covers 20 options including a deep chocolate brown (seen above) an intense Yves Klein blue and a great brick red. Compared to their competitor’s depressingly basic ranges of pastels and neons, this quiet tastefulness is refreshing and it means that season to season it will be easy to update your wardrobe with some new additions. Through washing and wearing over a number of weeks, I noticed no noticeable shrinkage or discolouring and the fabric kept its softness (which wasn’t always the case, especially if a garment has been chemically softened). I also kept an eye out for loose threads and buttons but found no faults. Which brings us to the final question of value. Polo shirts are an interesting category in this sense as they are so tied up to a certain idea of aspirational dressing — and priced accordingly. Our testing found that the general quality and feel of a £10 polo from H&M didn’t massively improve when compared to its £80 Lacoste equivalent. But that’s to ignore the fact that you are paying for what that £80 polo says about you, what it represents in our culture, and the semiotics of that logo — a francophile or a football causal, a preppy or a punk. That said, if you’re like me and the branded polos aren’t your niche but you want something that feels premium, then, for the cost, you will have a beautifully fabricated, European-made polo shirt of notably better quality than its competitors in the same price bracket and that’s enough for us to award it the top spot.
The downsides for the Riviera really come down to preference. I could imagine if you want a more classic fitting polo you may find it too slim or if you want one without a pocket that could turn you off. But as for the construction of the shirt itself or its fabric I couldn’t find any faults. Even the plastic buttons which might in other brands seem like a cost-saving measure feels more like a thoughtful design choice. It’s also more sportswear-adjacent than actual sportswear, but that feels like a quibble and true of any of the major polo brands at this point.
John Smedley Adrian Polo Made from incredibly soft sea island cotton, this knitted polo is perfect if you want a softer, more formal style of polo. $298
The Adrian Polo from John Smedley comes a close second to the Sunspel Riviera. The main attraction is the sea island cotton fabric which is incredibly soft with the best hand feel of any polo I reviewed. The placket length and knitted collar means it feels much more like the elegant mid-century polo shirt than something that would be mistaken for a 21st-century corporate uniform, albeit with some nice updates that make it feel more contemporary than other knitted polos. Smedley is to fine knitwear what Burberry is to trench coats, or John Lobb is to shoes and considered to be the best in the world in the category (it’s where the Queen gets her knitwear). The Adrian genuinely felt like a luxury. Everything from the feel of the fabric to the way it fitted just right with substantial ribbing on the waist and sleeves (near the bottom of the bicep) with just the right amount of tension spoke to the care and attention that had gone into making it. It’s also versatile, working just as well under the lapels of my suit when I got married a few weeks ago as it did in our 35 degree London heatwave when worn with a pair of shorts although, it is a bit too formal to work with tracksuit bottoms. Out of all the styles I reviewed it felt much more like a smart option. What the Adrian definitely isn’t on the other hand is a piece of grab-and-go sportswear that can be washed and thrown on like a t‑shirt or folded up at the bottom of your bag for destination holiday. I found myself hand-washing the delicate fabric to avoid rips and the collar, though it stands well, needs shaping with an iron after washing. Like a lot of luxury items, it’s delicate and requires a bit more care and attention than most and at £145 it’s not quite affordable enough to be a staple. That’s not saying it’s bad value necessarily, you can see the care and attention that was put into it and it’s UK manufactured but it’s probably not what most people are looking for when it comes to an everyday polo shirt, and those not quite the all-rounder that could hold the top spot. If you’re more likely to wear smart trousers than jeans and prefer a knit jumper to a hoodie then this is the polo for you.
H&M Cotton Polo Shirt A great price paired with good fabrication and quality, the H&M polo offers the best value for money with their straightforward take on the classic polo shirt. $12.99
If you’re unconcerned with logos and just want a classic polo shirt as a wardrobe staple you could do a lot worse than the H&M Cotton Polo Shirt. The piqué is soft and drapes well, the fit is classic, and straight (though as is often the case with H&M group, a bit long for me). In a blind test, I’m not sure I could tell the difference easily between this polo and the Lacoste L.12 which it’s clearly based it’s detailing on. And at £9.99 it’s extremely good value. Ethical clothing site Good on You’s review gives the brand an “It’s a start” rating for it’s environmental and ethical credentials noting that it’s environmental record is consistently improving while some issues with it’s supply chain labor remain.
What to look for
Range of colours: More than most sportswear, polo shirts are about colour, and we wanted our staple pick to have a good range of quality seasonal colours. Flexibility: We wanted a Polo that looked good with a range of clothing from the formal to the ultra-casual (a pair of shorts or sweats) Fabric: Has to work well in the heat, for most people a polo is a summer item and anything too heavy or coarse wasn’t going to cut it for us, we tried a range of synthetics and cottons of different qualities. Fit: Piqué and knitted cotton are unforgiving fabrics so having a good fit is key to making a polo shirt work. Collar: Does it stand up well, does it look okay when unbuttoned? is it easy to fold down or does it look sloppy. Length: Long enough to wear tucked in but not long enough to look sloppy on its own. Sleeves: We wanted the sleeve length to flatter the bicep but not ride up too high into the armpits, we also wanted easy movement as you’d expect from sportswear. Easy Care: The best polos, like all good sportswear, should be easy to wash and care for. Aesthetics: We wanted a polo that was more than a billboard for logo’s or an anonymous boxy t‑shirt alternative, the best would have a strong aesthetic quality.
The Fred Perry M12 & M3's are the most solidly constructed of all the branded polos I tried, and I was particularly keen on the thick ribbing on the sleeves and collar and the wide, reinforced placket. The collar had a slightly wider spread than most and which I found more flattering. The fit is trimmer than Lacoste and the hem is square so overall it has a neater, less sporty look. It's also nice that it's been continuously made in the UK since its introduction in the 1950s. The M12's aesthetic with its twin tips on the collar and sleeves have deep roots in the mod, Britpop, punk and skinhead subcultures in the UK and it can be a bit overpowering if you're looking for something more casual, but I love the simplicity of the M3's laurel crest and it has the same fit. Our favourite if you're looking for a logo. We ordered from Lacoste as they're the originators of the style. The Lacoste L.12.12 is their staple and comes in a huge range of colours. It's hard to judge it fairly as it seems to be the most duped of all polo styles—the Ralph Lauren polo is said to be a copy of their pre-60s model after the designer was disappointed with the synthetic blend polos they produced in the 70s. It has a straight fit, flattering sleeve and fairly flat collar. The fabric is softer than most piques and the split tail is nice but there is nothing particularly stand out, though the mother of pearl buttons are a nice touch. In terms of transparency, they were probably the most disappointing of the branded styles as there was absolutely no place of origin for manufacture, not even a "made in" on their label (though I believe they are produced in Peru). The Lacoste Paris Polo Shirt is their more contemporary update to the classic style and it features a slightly smaller collar, a bit of elastane in the fabric (6%) and a longer, narrower hidden placket and tonal crocodile patch. It's an interesting update, but if you're going for something so subtle I'm not sure why you wouldn't go for something completely unbranded. The Ralph Lauren Classic Fit Mesh Polo Shirt was an interesting variant. Its piqué was solid and soft feeling, It had a really thick placket and nice mother of pearl buttons, but it was largely indistinguishable from the Lacoste L.12 and its dupe status makes sense. It has a slightly lower stepped hem and a surpassingly slim fit for a "classic" style. It comes in a huge range of colours (some pretty dubious) and is the most expensive of the branded options we tried, coming in at £85. It's also shorter than most of the polos we tried so could be a good option for smaller guys. Kent Wang is one of menswear's best-kept secrets and we're a big fan of the Kent Want polo shirt. It splits the difference nicely between the more casual sportswear elements and smarter styles like the Adrian with thick quality pique, mother of pearl buttons and a high spread collar designed to look good under a suit jacket or jumper. If you want something with the formality of the Smedley and the easy-care of a classic polo then this is probably your best option and it has some of the most tasteful colours of any brand we reviewed (as well as a wide range of long sleeve options). It should be noted that the fit is quite slim and it's worth sizing up. The Uniqlo Airism Jersey Polo is sleek and technical without seeming dorky. It kept me from sticking to the sofa when the heat in London got to a high of 35°C (95°F). It would be the ideal choice for a warm-weather tech enthusiast and looked pretty cool and sleek worn with my black running shorts. The other Uniqlo style I tried was the Uniqlo DRY PIQUE polo, which I was less of a fan of. It was fine but not particularly interesting fit wise and has a slightly coarse plastic-y feel to the fabric. I tried ASKET's Pique Polo and while it has the brands great fit range (you can choose the length from small to large) was a disappointment overall. The piqué was soft and mercerized but also the most transparent of all the ones we tested which meant nipples showed through. The collar was strangely floppy and unstructured so looked messy when buttoned up but also had trouble sitting flat when opened and the placket looked visually off centre. As usual with the brand, the environmental and social tracing is excellent and I hope they can perfect the style. Finally, I also gave the H&M COOLMAX Polo a try and while I might appreciate it if I lived in a much warmer country, the texture just suffered in comparison to the pure cotton pique of their standard polo. This is a new guide from Typical Contents, the “wirecutter for clothes”. It’s by the team behind Epochs, a now defunct menswear blog. *We’re reviewing categories of clothing in hopes of finding the best item(s) in that category. All items tested in this guide were purchased with our own money. This post does not contain affiliate links. Check out our previous guides on boxer briefs, plain t-shirts, low top canvas trainers, and summer socks.
Video of a casino brawl: "First walmarts, then it was the malls, then the movies, now casinos? This is like the 5th story I've seen about a mob of some hood rats fighting." [+28] "Don't be racist. They're not "hood rats". They're aspiring rappers." [+21]
My 1 Year Anniversary of Full Time Day Trading. 3 Years In The Business. What I Wish I Could Tell Myself Years Ago.
This industry has a lack of transparency so I'm more than happy to say I will provide lots of that throughout this post with screenshots. There are LOTS of imgur links to back what I say so it's not just words on a post expecting you to just believe what I'm typing. This post I suppose is "Part 2" my post back in April, "After 2 years of Daytrading. 7 months full time. Here's my advice". I'm doing this to update everyone who came/comes across this in the future. Yes, it is possible. No, it won't be easy. You will pay homage to the rite of passage into this career. I'll also provide some examples of styles of trading so for the newer aspiring traders, there will be some things I rarely see discussed on forums. So here's to 1 year of Full Time Day Trading TL;DR - You'll become desensitized to trading. Stubborn to other strategies (There are biggebaddemore lucrative strategies. Don't chase them. Why fix what's not broken? I know what works for me and I'm content with it. No strategy is better than another. It's a personal choice. ). Losing individual trades won't faze you, they're inevitable. Profiting certainly feels better. After a while, you won't be as enthralled to trade every morning, it'll become just another part of your day). Trading is just managing your money through a statistic and the medium to execute it is trading on your platform. Think: "If. Then. Because". Your trading plan should be that black and white. Ask "Why" for everything you do and use. If you can't answer it with documented results, drop it. I get a bunch of messages all the time from people asking - . Out of those who follow me and chat me seeking further tips through my previous posts. I'll be answering the FAQ's and addressing things I see frequently in this sub as far as trading axioms Disclaimer: I won't sugarcoat anything. I'll share my experiences and add pieces of advice I'd give to those who are currently experiencing the same thing becoming a full time day trader and what day to day life is like, the occasional distress, (DRAWDOWNS). Some of you follow my Twitter for the past few months where I post my daily watchlists with a snippet that reveals my DayTradingBuyingPower. I do this not to brag but to demonstrate that the account does yield growth, I pay myself, and there are days where the balance does not move because there was no edge. I also do this since nobody else shows their account performance. (Yes. You, Mr. YouTube gurus and wannabe gurus). We do this for income, the numbers on our accounts are real. Treat it as such. Get your initial capital out of your account THEN try to "Scale your account" with your profits AKA The Market's Money. I'll go over: •FAQ's that I get in my inbox (I'm still welcome to further questions if I don't answer here) •Decision Fatigue (You will experience this) •The previous year (2019-2020) of ups and downs •How to use my watchlists that I post on Twitter in the morning to your advantage •The pivotal moment that changed my trading career (NFLX 10-17-19) •The road to becoming a full time trader. (It won't be fun unless you're handed the money) •You'll have a better grasp of my strategy (Between ProTip 4 and 5. ProTip 8.) There are 10 "ProTips" throughout the post that I wish I could tell myself years back and I'll periodically throw them in here as the post goes on. I make posts long in order to segregate those serious about this business and those who will just become another statistic in the failure rate of this business. At the end of this post, I'll go over the frequent questions I receive such as: (Answers to FAQ at bottom of post.)
"How do you prepare for a trading day?"
"What would you go back to tell yourself?"
"Books?" (The most abused question, but I get it. I could start a public library with just trading books I bought over the years)
"What is your background?"
"What is a normal day for you?"
"How did you discover your strategy?"
"What did you do/How did you get started?"
"What is your % return?" (Not a fun question since a trading account is not an index or investment account. Intraday traders do not measure performance in %. Most are measured in "R".)
"Is enough to start trading?"
"Why do you need so many monitors"? (This one is rarely asked but I do see it discussed on platforms and people trading on mobile phones love giving flack to anybody who trades on multiple monitors. Hint: Everyone's different. Whatever works for the individual. There are no rules in trading. The only rule is that it works.)
Background: I heard about daytrading during the 2008 crash while in high school. We all want to make more while working less. I entertained day trading from time to time but always realized I never had enough money. Horrible mindset because I could have still researched WHILE saving money to put into my trading business. 2015 -I opened my first trading account with Scottrade while in the Marines. Apparently if you have a net worth of over $1,000,000 you can get out early (Biggest rumor ever). I frivolously bought crap penny stocks. In short - I was a hair away from gambling. What made it NOT gambling was the fact that at least I owned something tangible (Securities of a company) and anything can happen. Buy low sell high was my strategy. Didn't work obviously. No idea what I was doing. I'd buy and hold hoping to wake up to the stock price being way higher and it never happened. •ProTip #1 : If you hold a trade overnight... It is not daytrading. Stop turning into an investor because you can't admit a minor defeat. 2017 - I started taking this business seriously while working in the oilfield as a Logistics Planner (If you're wondering what company since I am asked this from time to time, Google: "World's largest oilfield services company"). No kids, girlfriend/wife or financial obligations. I worked 10AM - 7PM CST and would trade the open from home for roughly 1 hour. Later I was offered to be a Data Analyst... Only downside was... I couldn't trade since I had to be at work now at 8AM CST during the market open. In the moment of signing the offer letter, I was bummed thinking, "No more trading," That wasn't the case though. You can still build your trading business with a 9-5 and while never making one trade. The data is there. •ProTip #2 :We all see the same data. It's there forever. Many strategies show their edge both live and in hindsight the same. (Especially if you trade patterns). You CAN build your business as a trader without even taking a trade. You CAN build your strategy while working a 9-5. Just because you're not trading, does not mean you can't build your business through research. You won't know how you'll react to the losses but at least you can diagnose the raw data with a large enough sample size for assurance and confidence. If you have a 9-5 and want to go fulltime into this business. Stay for a bit, save, live so far beneath your means that it is almost miserable, (depending on your expenses, area you live, family etc) and get a few hundred sample sizes of your strategy! And for your PTO/days off... trade the open. I sacrificed my vacation days to trade. After 2 years in corporate America, eating cheap food, never going out, saving relentlessly, I made the decision to just do it and resigned. I went straight into the ring of fire known as trading. That was on: September 23rd, 2019 ""(Sound familiar?) When you hear these types of comments.. your response should be: "Nobody put the time I put into this. The 90%+ who fail, don't have it all written out, computerized backtests, manual backtests, statistics, SOP manuals, JUST like the job I have which is a business, I'm just another cog in their wheel. I'll just be wearing all the hats in my trading business. Instead of Oil&Gas, it's just for trading". One thing I see here a lot is people saying to trade X amount of months/years or make X. •ProTip #3 -Think in man hours, not calendar. Example: Trader A puts in 1 hour of study/work/research everyday for 1 year. (365 Hours) Trader B puts in 12 hours of work every day for 4 months. (~1,450 Hours) Trader A lives in a major city while Trader B lives in the middle of nowhere. (Think cost of living) 2 totally different living expenses and 2 different calibers of dedication. I'd put my money on Trader B because he put in more man hours. (~1,000 more hours on the clock to be more exact). ProTip #4 - Have a cushion in your account AND your personal bank account. Having a strategy is great but you won't know entirely if you can fulfill and execute your plan until you experience the ups and downs both short and long term. A strategy is constant over long periods of time... there will be days, weeks, and perhaps a month here and there where you aren't making much money. We hear all the time, "Trade like a casino". Casinos don't make money day after day but the odds are in there favor over the long haul. Month 1 of full time trading was great: Immediately after going full time, the first month (September 2019 to October 2019), I did super well. Business as usual. No stress. Everything going as planned. No turbulence. At least not like I had ever experienced... The 2 prerequisites I had before resigning was:
Show consistency in returns. Consistent Sharpe Ratio.
Make a 4 figure trade (I achieved this while short 100 shares on ROKU September 20th, 2019 and even made a victory post if you scroll down my profile's posts.)
First life-changing trading lesson learned as a full time trader: That money printing spree ended on NFLX October 17th, 2019. Less than 1 month of being a full time trader. Deviating and going against my plan I actually made $500 in a matter of 4 minutes. If you follow my watchlists on Twitter, I always trade with the direction of the gap. If I notate, "Long Watches" that means I will only trade it IF (and only IF) I see a long biased pattern. Likewise I will only be looking to short my "Short Watches". Plenty of times I'll call out a ticker and it immediately goes the other way. No harm no foul because there was no long biased pattern to confirm my thesis. On 10-17-2019, I went against my plan and it worked.. NFLX gapped up to resistance and I went short when it tanked off of a short pattern.(This is known as fading). The market gave me a free lunch and then some. So now I'm walking on air in my mind: "I'm an absolute unit" "I'll do it again and clear another $500 to make it a 4 figure day before 9:30AM Central" "Should have quit my job way earlier being this good." Within 30 minutes of the open. I gave all $500 back. Yes I wanted to trade it back. Never have I had the desire to smash anything but I do understand those who do! Yes I stood there and felt like each passing second was wasted opportunity. The next 24 hours were long! ProTip #5:It's circumstances like that that help you in the long run. FunFact: I never once deviated from my plan since. Not ever again. "I could have paid for my groceries and electric for the month after 4 minutes of trading if I just took the free pass the market gave me" I felt dumb but in hindsight, I'm glad at what happened. It was this exact instance that married me to my strategy/business plan. The next day and the 7 trading days following. I didn't make 1 profiting trade. My longest ever drawdown - 11 straight trades. While researching I found out this was Decision Fatigue (I'll go over this shortly below) Put yourself in that situation... You have bills and your income is strictly trading. I don't care how much a robot you think you are or how strongly you believe in probabilities, when you were in an office less than a month ago making almost 6 figures sitting in an air conditioned office knowing direct deposit is on its way every other Friday no matter how well or poorly you performed at work.. Now you're in the hot seat. Its a bottomless feeling. Now all of your friends and families words are ringing in your head. But just like a boxing match.. you gotta take a hit to get a hit. Win some, lose some, shake hands and get back to normal life. Water under the bridge. Mind you: •No guaranteed direct deposit every 2 weeks. •No more medical/dental insurance. •401K retirement is no longer being matched. 11 trades is nothing. You only require ~5.5 trades at 2:1RRR to make it back OR 3.5 trades at 3:1RRR. It's nothing especially in your research because you can easily just scroll a little more and see, "Oh that's just a drawdown. No big deal". How will you react in real time? Will you buckle or choke? But the thing is, I was skipping trades out of fear and JUST so happened to be picking all of the unsuccessful ones. (Decision Fatigue) Think about those 2 weeks of being in a drawdown. Half of the month. You're not just stagnant, your account is bleeding slowly but surely. Next time you're looking at your spreadsheet/backtest/predictive model/research.. try to put yourself in those days of drawdown. It's not just 11 boxes of red with "-1R" or "Loss" in them. The screenshot above on Imgur is just a recent example. Think about your daily routine, going to the gym, hanging with friends, grocery shopping, cooking, going to bed, waking up, doing a routine, then losing again.. and again.. and again. Try to think of life during those 300+ hours (Weekends too) of, "I haven't made money. I've lost money. And I still have bills. After paying them, I'll be closer to my set Risk of Ruin". Here's a lesson you won't learn before going fulltime but I'll do my best to emphasize it here: Pick a strategy. And stick with it. It can literally be anything. Don't spread yourself thin watching 20+ tickers and be a jack of all patterns/tickers. Be a master of 1 pattern and master of 1 circumstance. There's this real thing called "Decision Fatigue" which explains exactly why what happened.. happened. The article explains that the 2 outcomes of this mental strain known as "Decision Fatigue" is:
Sound familiar? Does it kind of make sense now? As a new trader you have YouTube, Facebook, StockTwits, Twitter, "gurus", books recommended on Amazon, all throwing their ideas/strategies around, the market has opportunities littered all over.. Decision Fatigue is inevitable for the unprepared. Decision Fatigue happens in every profession. If you mess up at your 9-5, its just a blunder, your paycheck will remain the same. Just a slap on the wrist and move on. With trading, you make a mistake.. it's less food on your table, lights don't stay on, and/or water isn't running. That pressure adds up. No wonder so many fail... The signs of Decision Fatigue: •Procrastination. •Impulsivity. •Avoidance. •Indecision. When you find what clicks with you AND its either statistically or performance proven, have the courage to risk a healthy sum of your capital into it. There are strategies/patterns/styles of trading littered all over the internet: Very broad example: "IFcircumstance happensTHEN"Execution". Stoploss is XYZ. Target is XYZ.BECAUSEover a series of Y trades, I will make $X,XXX.xx". ProTip #6 :Strategies are all over the internet. It's your account/money, backtest it. People share their strategies here all the time and although I don't agree with them because I know what works for me, it's something to chew off of for you newer traders. YouTube is a harbor with people who give just enough info to figure their style out.You will lose trades. Sit for some screen-time and pay homage to the edge that you discover. All in due time. Insert key metrics and find correlations. This is how you create checks and balances to create/formulate a black and white trading plan. When I first started doing this, my spreadsheet(s) had so many columns it was annoying and would kill my desire to continue working. You'll find things that are imperative and some that are unimportant. For a lack of more colorful terms: "Throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks"Trim the fat. Rinse and repeat.
Here's some things I used to remind myself of and perhaps it'll ring some bells for you:
•Surrender your capital to your edge. If you truly accept the risk and trust your proven edge, losses don't feel like anything nor do profits. Although we're not here to put on losing trades and yes it does feel nice to profit. I still from time to time will excited when I hit target after a series of multiple profiting trades depending on my mood. •If you're nervous or your heart starts beating quicker when you hear the sound effect of a trade getting entered/filled. Be honest with yourself and ask yourself if you're truly accepting the risk. •Things you can't take to the bank:
Number of trades.
"This one great trade that I hit target in less than 30 seconds and I got filled better than expected"
All of these are integral metrics. But you're trading to make money. It's up or down, green or red, profit or loss, TRUE or FALSE. So with that said, find what works flawlessly and is easy to follow. Checks and Balances. Then allocate a good sum of risk into it. I read it here all the time, "Don't risk too much" and that's great and true for new traders. But don't sell yourself short. Push yourself over the edge and admit that you know your stuff. Think of Trader A and Trader B. If you've put the time in.. don't sell yourself short. You've built enough courage to learn a business so many fail at. This business has such a negative connotation. But remember that not everybody can handle meritocracies and that's exactly what the market is. Don't try to be the best, just work harder than everyone else and the output of your input will be relative. ProTip #7:YouTube trading ads from gurus... they're subconsciously making you think you're a novice trader.It's in their marketing. They study marketing psychology. The EASIEST things to sell:
People that are desperate for those things are the most vulnerable and these "Traders" marketers are fantastic at portraying all 3 of those things at once. •ProTip #8 (Broken record alert) :Write a business plan. Your strategy shouldn't take longer than 4 sentences to explain to another trader. When you have a plan that's proven through a statistic and WAIT for it to happen, you feel100Xbetter taking the trade. You don't even care too much when it results in a loss. Because that was your plan, you accept it much better, and you know it was just an expense for a winning trade. Want my strategy? "I scan for stocks with a market cap of over 250M, 10k shares premarket, gapping to support or resistance, priced over $10, and I look for a pattern biased to the direction of the overnight gap. It isn't rocket science. Check my Twitter, look at the dates I posted, and you'll notice the gist. Yes this is an edge but not the entire edge. How fast can you sift through 15 time frames? How long does it take you to fill out your order ticket? Your Fibonacci time extensions with 5 EMA's and Bollinger Bands aren't helping you. They're lagging. If they work for you, great. In my experience, they hindered my visibility. Pro Tip #9: Yes statistics are highly applicable to trading. Patternsdowork. All patterns do is tell you WHEN to enteexit, and how many shares. Humans will never think differently of money. Be the frontrunner of the market's emotions. Nobody remembers the indecisive leader. Risk taking is a commonality amongst leaders. Trading requires courage and it's O.K. to show a bit of confidence as long as you also have the humility to admit when you're in a bad trade.(Notice how I didn't put, "wrong". You're only "wrong" when you deviate from a proven strategy.) ProTip #10:Risk management is 24/7. I've never heard anyone mention this but think about it a little bit. Having financial obligations can become stressful regardless of how you earn your income but its far more stressful while running a business. Not just any business, but a business where you can go to work on your A-game, do every single last thing right, trade without emotion etc... and still walk away with less money than what you came to work with. Meanwhile somebody who JUST started trading made a 4 figure profit not knowing what the heck the difference betweenETB, HTB, or NTB. Think of it like this, a JV high school baseball player can hit a homerun off of an MLB pitcher once.. but how will he fare at the end of the season? Traders don't predict stock prices, traders predict the outcome over hundreds of trades. People chat me asking what TO do rather than what NOT to do. You don't learn labor intensive jobs or how to fly a plane by what to do.. you learn what NOT to do to stay alive. That's all I have. Once you have a trading plan underway and you're executing it, you don't have much time when your hobbies are cheap but I still do respond to chats/messages. I do get asked from a previous post when I'll build a website and to answer that: I'm learning how to build a site on rainy days. Can't put a definitive date on it. I will say that its coming, if you don't give up on this business in the next year or so, you'll see it. What I plan on putting on there:
Position size Calculators
Dictionary with examples
I just don't want some generic WordPress site. I want my website to be stellar and a great resource for aspiring traders. Something I didn't have learning this business. I want it to be something I'd consider a staple in a trader's resources. Perhaps one day it will be referenced on this sub frequently. FAQ:
"How do you prepare for a trading day?" I get behind the computer about 20 minutes before the bell. Reason being: "If you study long. You'll study wrong". If the chart isn't grabbing my attention and gets me excited, then I flick to the next ticker. I don't even know the companies I trade half the time nor do I care about a news report some journalist wrote. Also there is no magic news outlet that lets you know about "Major events that affect stock prices". If there was, I wouldn't be here because we're all subscribed to the same edge nor would I be trading my style.
"What would you go back to tell yourself?" Get more data. Save a little more, your hairline and sleep schedule will thank you. Take only perfect trades and don't feel forced to trade. There will be days you don't touch an order ticket. And days where you are busy and have tunnel vision. Next thing you know its time to shut it down for the day.
"Books?" - I try to humble myself when answering this but off the cuff, they're all mediocre. Andrew Aziz's was ok, definitely get it, it's only a few bucks on Kindle. Just don't expect it to give you strategies BUT it will give you ideas. If you're brand new, it is good as it will teach you the common vernacular of a day trader. Mark Douglas was interesting but his YouTube seminar recordings are much better. No book, Facebook group, YouTube channel is going to be the end all be all perfect strategy. Expect losses. Don't be a one hitter quitter after suffering a few tiny losses/paper cuts. Stick to it. Most books will help you familiarize yourself with the common vocabulary amongst traders and will hint ideas. It's your job to formulate the strategy and template for research.
"What is your background?" I was a logistics planner for a major oilfield services company. Later I then became a data/buyer analyst so yes, data analytics/research was a 2nd language for me entering trading. I did have that upper hand and did shave off months if not years for me.
"What is a normal day for you?" I'm always done trading after 10:30AM Central. I will hold onto a trade until right before the bell if it hasn't hit either target or StopLoss by the time I leave the house but it is absolutely closed in entirety by 2:55PM Central. After I trade, I enjoy the day. No I'm not riding around in my Lambos posting IG/Snapchat (I have neither) stories of my profits with my private jet waiting on a runway trying to sell an $7 eBook or a $100 membership (HINT HINT). I grill/cook, read, workout, ride my motorcycle, attack my other sources of income (small businesses I'm building), hit the driving range, shoot guns, etc. I live in Texas. Life is cheap and fun here.
"How did you discover your strategy?" I bought TradeIdeas premium, went through all of their computerized backtesting patterns, tested them. Then did what I mentioned earlier... Tried to find correlations in metrics. It distilled the trades to a strict criteria and here I am. I post on average 4-5 tickers on my watchlist. 7 max. I do not like spreading my attention thin across multiple tickers. I do not recommend buying TradeIdeas, it does have lots of bugs.
"What did you do/How did you get started?" Was a data analyst, was good at research and applied it to trading. My incentive was, "I could have made more money trading rather than sitting in 2+ hours of roundtrip traffic and 9 hours in an office. The data is there. Everybody sees the same charts all over the world. There are ways to make this possible"
"What is your % return?"(Not a fun question since a trading account is not an index or investment account. Intraday traders do not measure performance in %) I trade to make money AND pay myself, so my equity curve will look like a small loss or small gain after I pay myself. % return? I measure my account's performance in Sharpe Ratio and Risk Units. My Sharpe Ratio is ~1.85. While I yield roughly .8 - 1 R per trading day. Some weeks I make 10R. Some weeks I lose 2R. Yeah one week I might make $2,500. But the next week I might lose $300. The following week my strategy will yield $0 and the last week I might make $1,000. Some weeks suck. Some weeks are great. But overall. Just shy of 1R per trading day. Some days I'm super busy taking trade after trade. Some days I'll shut it down after 5 minutes without even filling out an order ticket. Some days I won't even see the open because there is no edge for me.. Keywords... "For me".
"Is enough to start trading?" Depends on where you live. Are you restricted to PDT? If not then how much are you obligated to expenses? I live in Texas. Things are cheap here. If you live in NYC or The Bay Area your expenses will be astronomical compared to mine. A $30,000 account is totally doable for a single Texan with low monthly expenses. Now if you're in California or New York? I'm sure you'll fall below 25k if you have 1 bad month. Also depends on if you have other sources of income or a full/part time job. I encourage every trader and aspiring trader to have multiple sources of income, don't rely solely on trading. Not just for the sake of mitigating pressure but also for sanity. If you have a family to provide for, I don't know what that's like, you never know when Little Johnny is going to randomly pick up Trombone lessons for a school program/play while little Suzie needs transmission work in her car because a simple solenoid went out. $1,700 later.
"Why do you need so many monitors?"I use 3 for trading. The 4th is for music. The other 2 are useless while trading. That's for trading though. When I made the decision to go full time, I knew I was about to go off the chain with research. And sifting between spreadsheets, a platform to see multiple timeframes for a pattern to backtest. My attention span is short, I'll lose my train of thought before I open the other tab to input data. But the main reason was for research. It's such a time saver and is a headache repellant when doing research while everything is laid out in front of you. Now that I have a system. I'll most likely be treating myself to 2 ultrawides for Christmas.
As always, thank you to everybody who takes time out to message me and letting me know some people read these and show appreciation. I would say, "Good luck" but there is no luck in trading. Just statistics. Remember that! In conclusion: Yes. Full time trading is possible, depending where you live/monthly expenses and obligations. You're more likely to become a profitable trader than a professional athlete. There is a level of uncertainty each day, perhaps each week, doubtful each month, and definitely not each year. If I ever want a raise, I just consult my business plan and financials, then decide if I can handle it mentally. If you have medical issues, get a part time job for the benefits. If you're healthy, just be careful. All the best! -CJT2013
It finally struck me. Blacklist coverage is like Las Vegas. It’s a casino. They lure you in with the hope that a randomly assigned reader or two will give you a high score or two that makes the service worthwhile. You’re rolling the dice. A few may get lucky. Maybe you get an 8,9, or elusive 10 on your first try. Or maybe you fork out for 2, or 3, 4, 5 reviews. The likelihood of it is slim but it happens enough, at least for someone who isn’t you that you keep coming back. But what it’s not is a coverage service. You get twitter limited characters that can’t possibly give you any useful or valuable insight. Sometimes the reviews are fair and sometimes they’re not. But even for the “bargain” you pay for blacklist “coverage” you overpay. Here’s my most recent coverage for a submission I made. It’s a period film about a sports legend who won 11 consecutive PGA tournaments in 1945. Strengths: “We all love an underdog, and despite being white in a time when that was a massive advantage and living near a golf course, Byron has to struggle.” What? Who is this vetted reader with a year of coverage experience? I understand subjectivity but professional coverage also demands a certain degree of objectivity. What other useful nuggets did this woke aspiring screenwriter submit? Weaknesses: “The characters don’t interrogate their gender archetypes...” (what? Did I just submit this to a gender study class at UCLA?) But this is my favorite. “The extreme racism of the era is whitewashed from the character journeys and dialog.” I guess for this reader every film needs to be about racism. This reader reads for the blacklist. I could roll the dice a few more times at the blacklist casino in hopes for more, but why bother? At the blacklist the house always wins. And how could they not with dealers like this?
BLOOM and BEL salivate after PIGO "cloud casino" license approval (Friday, Dec 11)
Happy DAY_OF_THE_WEEK, Barkada --
The PSE closed up 52 points to 7154 ▲0.7%.
The out-of-office replies are starting to come in after every MB send, so it can only mean one thing: the Christmas slowdown has already begun! Emmanuel and Cecilia, I hope you both have outstanding vacations. Haha.
MiddleClass ▼1.94% POGO Gaming ▼1.38% Fast Food ▼1.12%
Main stories covered:
[UPDATE] PAGCOR introduces its own online casino called “Live Shots”... the virtual casino will be open to Philippine Inshore Gaming Operations (PIGOs) who are willing to pay 25% of gross gaming revenue to PAGCOR. According to PAGCOR, Solaire Resort and Casino, Okada Manila, City of Dreams, and another land-based casino in Subic have already been approved for PIGO licenses. The terms of the license dictate that access to Live Shots will only be in the Philippines, and that only PIGO “VIPs” will be able to play.
MB:PAGCOR’s revenues have dropped 97% because of COVID, so it is obviously desperate to find some way to passively get a cut of some other action. As I speculated when the news broke about DFNN’s [DFNN 5.50 ▼6.30%] “first ever” online casino license, the rest of The Gang would probably be quite interested to follow suit. Here we are. Bloomberry [BLOOM 8.40 ▼1.18%] (Solaire) and Belle Corp [BEL 1.66 ▼1.19%] are already lined up at the trough; could Dennis Uy and PH Resorts [PHR 3.00 ▲1.01%] be that far behind?
[NEWS] MRC Allied [MRC 0.48 0.00%] halted until full consequences of Kerberus acquisition are disclosed... the deal between MRC and 5G Security Inc (5GS) calls for MRC to acquire 75% of Kerberus from 5GS, but that’s about all we can know from the relatively short disclosure. The PSE halted the stock before the open, saying that investors need to have access to “information [that] may reasonably be expected to materially affect the market activity and the price of its securities”. There was no lift date/time provided, so investors should assume that the halt will remain indefinitely until MRC is able to provide more info.
MB:Remember how MRC changed its articles of incorporation to change its primary purpose from “property developer” to “holding company”? Yeah, well that’s the only justification that MRC has provided for the purchase; “[the purchase of Kerberus] brings the Company closer to its aspirational goal of transforming from property business to a holding company.” Holding companies aren’t special, they’re just a company that owns other companies. Where is the strategy, here, if the goal is simply to own other companies?
[NEWS] BHI Holdings [BH 901.00 0.00%] suspended from PSE for failure to maintain 10% public float... according to the PSE, the investment holding company’s public ownership level is just 9.86%, which is below the minimum 10% required. BHI has “not been very active in investing and is only receiving interest income”, is “still in the process of finalizing its business plans”, and BH has no principal products or services because “it has not decided as to what product or service it will introduce to the market”. It’s website is still “under construction.”
MB:Prior to the suspension, BH was listed as having a 10.02% public ownership level, which is basically the required minimum (it’s even still listed that way now on the PSE’s website). So, how did the public ownership level fall from 10.02% to 9.86%? When Ms. Jemie U. Tan, a director of BH, bought 850 shares of BH in late October and early November. Because Ms. Tan is a director of BH, as far as the PSE’s concerned, her shareholdings are considered “non-public” holdings. Shares held by directors, officers, and even principal/substantial stockholders are not counted towards the percentage of the company that is publicly-owned. Seems like a silly mistake to make for a company that, even though it basically does nothing and looks like a rough draft, still has a marketcap of over ₱450m.
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Welcome to the fourth season of Swoldow's Big Brother, where 14 houseguests compete for a million dollars by winning challenges and evicting other houseguests. MEET THE CAST: - Alix Colburn, 22, Zookeeper (u/IAmWolfNinja) - Andrew 'Drew' Scott-Martinez, 30, Model (u/Twig7665) - Becky Ope, 32, Librarian (u/Rylandoesreddit) - Earl Barrun, 19, College Student (u/KingTyson27) - Huang Ren, 32, Actuary (u/TDSwaggyBoy) - James Morlon, 49, Rock Musician (u/AngolanDesert) - Julia 'Pryce Tagg' Stowell, 24, Drag King (u/Gemini_B) - Lihua 'Dakota' Song, 23, Socialite (u/Pray_The_Gay_To_Come) - Marilyn Yung, 21, Aspiring Broadway Singer (u/blxxdymxry) - Rosana 'Ro' Pierce, 23, Dance Instructor (u/Ripecornball60) - Tania Mason, 27, Elevator Repair-woman (u/dramaking_22) - Theodore 'Theo' Suns, 66, Postal Worker (u/asiansurvivorfan) - Tyler Cullen, 24, Grad Student (u/SilverOwl24) - Zina Allhred, 42, Casino Manager (u/CapybaraWookiee) THE SEASON:https://brantsteele.com/bigbrothetemplate/r.php?c=WfkG77Wt GOOGLE DOC WITH WRITEUP:https://docs.google.com/document/d/1y_bLtuil6Xo213QEs98mHK5yh397iROYJqZP6qE5fu0/edit?usp=sharing Potential All-Stars:Ro, Zina, Drew, Theo, Tyler, James Potential Second Chance:Tania, Pryce Tagg, Alix That season was good, but not great. The pre-jury was fairly predictable, with the giant majority targeting the smaller groups, leading to both Dakota and Marilyn, and Huang and Alix going out very early. I do feel bad for Alix as he was nominated 4 times, and I hope he will return. The first two jury votes were also predictable with Becky and Pryce going, but the Becky vote was a unifying vote where Ro, Zina, and Tania team up with outsiders Pryce and Theo to turn on the male-run majority.Pryce Tagg was a very fun early villain who turned into an underdog later on. We then see our first blindside take place where Ro puts up James, the biggest challenge threat, and Zina, who worked the other challenge threat in Drew to save her over James We then see Tania and Tyler both get blindsided by the Ro and Zina duo. Theo is then sent packing due to being on the outs, and he was a really entertaining underdog who survived being nominated five times in a row after both of his allies left before the jury. We then have a dominant final three in Drew, Zina, and Ro and Ro takes Zina to the top two, where her social game got her a unanimous win, making Ro the first winner to play a completely perfect game Over these four seasons we have established ourselves many great players. For this next season, we will put 20 of these players against eachother to see who wins in Swoldow’s Big Brother: All-Stars
Why the Legion is Doomed to be Destroyed in a Total War with the NCR.
Even if the Legion were to win the Second Battle of Hoover Dam and conquer the Mojave Wasteland, they'd merely be buying themselves a little extra time and simply stall their inevitable demise. Note that the following analysis assumes that the Legion won the Second Battle of Hoover Dam and that the Courier died in Goodsprings. To start off this analysis, let's begin with a run-down of the respective weapons, equipment and gear of the respective ranks of the NCR and the Legion going into the Second Battle of Hoover Dam. Beginning with the NCR garrison at Hoover Dam. The NCR Trooper comprises the core of the Republic's colossal armies and is the prime component of the NCR Army. A superb combination of volunteers and conscripts whose degrees of training, motivation, combat experience and access to equipment vary across the ranks, they're some of the most disciplined, most professional soldiers in all of the Wastes. They're outfitted with modern military-grade ballistic vests that offer excellent protection against small arms fire, shrapnel and melee weapons alongside steel helmets. The NCR Army battalion that's stationed at Hoover Dam in particular is fully comprised of battle-hardened, fully-trained volunteer veteran NCR Troopers that are armed with 5.56 × .45mm NATO Marksman Carbines, 5mm Assault Rifles, 12-gauge Riot Shotguns and .308 Sniper Rifles to supplement their standard-issued 5.56 × .45mm NATO Service Rifles. The NCR Patrol Ranger is one of the finest, most elite warriors in both the NCR military and the Wastelands, overall. Having survived a brutal training regimen that's so ludicrously difficult that 8-out-of-10 aspiring recruits wash-out, these purely volunteer harbingers of death have little to no equals in terms of skill, fighting prowess and strength. They're outfitted with a suit of hand-made First-Generation Combat sporting a knife sheath, a hydration pouch and spiked spurs for unarmed combat that is impervious to any and all small arms fire, shrapnel and melee attacks. They're armed with 5.56 × .45mm NATO Marksman Carbines, .308 Sniper Rifles and .44 Magnum Trail Carbines. The NCR Heavy Trooper is not only the elite heavy shock infantry of the NCR Army, but is also the proverbial sledgehammer through which the Republic may crush its enemies and obliterate all that may threaten its values. Having earned their distinctive armor through immense sacrifice in blood, sweat and most of their young lives, they're the absolute best-trained, best-equipped, most battle-hardened, most professional, most skilled, most fanatically-devoted warriors in the whole of the NCR Armed Forces (rivaled only by the legendary NCR Veteran Rangers). Warriors that are more than willing to fight to their absolute last breath in defense of the Republic and all that it represents. They're outfitted with NCR Salvaged Power Armor, suits of T-45d Power Armor that were captured from the Brotherhood of Steel during the Brotherhood War that have had their joint servomotors removed and their back-mounted power cylinders replaced with custom-built energy modules and built-in air-conditioning units so that Power Armor Training wouldn't be needed to wear them. And while they're no longer legitimate suits of Power Armor in that they're no longer powered, they're still some of the absolute best and most protective suits of armor within the Republic's entire mammoth arsenal. Completely invulnerable to all but the most powerful conventional firearms, highly-advanced energy weapons, specialized ammunition and high-powered explosives, they can truly absorb Hellish amounts of punishment. They're armed with 5.56 × .45mm NATO Light Machine Guns, 5mm Miniguns, Heavy Incinerators, Flamers and Missile Launchers (albeit rarely). The NCR Veteran Ranger is a living, breathing legend walking amongst the ruins and ashes of the Old World, drawing inspiration and hope from soldiers and citizens of the Republic as well as fear and terror from enemies and all those who dare to oppose the NCR. Fabled for their unmatched fighting prowess, envied for their flawlessly unequalled marksmanship technique, feared for their unrivaled warfighting skills, awe-inspiring for their unsurpassed pugilist talent and legendary for their innate mastery over hardcore survivalist skills, the NCR Veteran Rangers are the absolute finest, best-trained, most battle-hardened, most professional, most skilled, most-elite and all-around most bad-ass warriors in not only the entire history of the Republic military, but also the whole of the Western Wastes, as well. Centurions and Praetorian Guards of Caesar's Legion, Knights and Paladins of the Brotherhood of Steel and even the Republic's very own NCR Heavy Troopers have learned to shudder in terror and fear at the mere mention of the mythical phenoms of the Wastelands that are the NCR Veteran Rangers These fabled guardian angels of the Republic are outfitted with the equally legendary Black Armor, a hyper-advanced suit of Third-Generation Combat Armor consisting of a highly-flexible vest of incredibly-rigid high-impact armored plating with adjustable straps on both the sides and the shoulders and a built-in throat protector that's mounted on the vest. Combined with the state-of-the-art rounded-shell ballistic helmet sporting built-in lamps and infrared/visible light projectors as well as the complimentary highly-sophisticated armored mask with built-in low-light optics, an incorporated locking mechanism that joins the mask itself with the helmet shell, ear covers with built-in membranes that confer additional protection without inhibiting the wearer's hearing and built-in air filters, the mythical Black Armor is well-deserving of its stellar reputation. As you can see, the NCR's forces are extremely heavily-armed, well-equipped and armed to the teeth with the absolute latest in top-of-the-line, high-powered firearms and state-of-the-art, highly-sophisticated energy weapons as well as superbly well-protected with an abundance of different varieties of military-grade body armors with varying degrees of effectiveness and even Salvaged Power Armor. Now it's time for an evaluation of the Legion's weapons and technology. The Recruit Legionary is the primary foot soldier of Caesar's army and comprises the vast majority of the Legion's ranks. Trained and conditioned from before they could walk to become the perfect warriors, Recruit Legionaries are incredibly well-conditioned and in phenomenal physical shape, owing to a savagely intense training regimen that even the NCR Rangers would envy. Despite said conditioning, however, they're still the equivalent of literal cannon fodder with little-to-no actual skill in firearms usage and maintenance. They're outfitted with a suit of makeshift featherweight armor that consists of sports equipment with bits and pieces of scrap metal atop a cloth tunic that's all lashed together with leather straps. An armor that's so weak that it couldn't even protect its wearer against the likes of a straight razor. They're armed primarily with a "Machete" (what's really a lawnmower blade that's lashed to a stick) and "Throwing Spears" (what's really even bigger sticks with pieces of sharpened scrap metal fastened and jabbed into the tips), though they can rarely get their hands on firearms (albeit damn near broken ones) such as .357 Magnum Revolvers, .357 Magnum Cowboy Repeaters, 9mm Pistols, 20-gauge Single Shotguns, 20-gauge Caravan Shotguns, 5.56 × .45mm NATO Varmint Rifles and 10mm Pistols. The Prime Legionary is the centerpiece of the Legion's fighting force and the core component of any Legion formation. Having survived 5 years in Caesar's forces, a remarkable accomplishment in and of itself, Prime Legionaries are no longer mere cannon fodder but are now the main frontline fighting force of the Legion. With the accompanying improvement in weapons and equipment as well as adequate firearms skills to make the promotion that much sweeter. They're outfitted with the exact same armor as before, only with a slight improvement in protection. It still can't protect the wearer from shit, however. They're armed with the standard-issued "Machetes" and "Throwing Spears" though they also have much better access to more advanced weapons than before. Melee weapons, such as Machete Gladius', Power Fists and Chainsaws, and firearms (of decent quality), such as 10mm SMGs, 12-gauge Sawn-Off Shotguns .44 Magnum Revolvers and .308 Hunting Rifles are all available to them in significant quantities. The Veteran Legionary is the oldest, most experienced, most elite warrior within the lesser ranks of the Legion and is also the precise scalpel to the blunt, destructive warhammer of the Recruit and Prime Legionaries. Having survived a full decade in Caesar's service, a monumental achievement in its own right, Veteran Legionaries are the elite rapid reaction force of the Legion that's tasked with neutralizing particularly tough adversaries that their lesser counterparts can't defeat and typically remain in reserve until otherwise needed for tipping the scales of a pivotal battle or campaign in the Legion's favor. As they're the oldest Legionaries (a lot of whom have been with Caesar since day 1), they're also the most experienced, most capable Legionaries who are in their absolute prime in regards to martial prowess and physical resilience. They're second only to Centurions in terms of skill and experience, which is reflected in their improved access to superior weapons and equipment. They can also use and maintain firearms with frightening levels of efficiency. They're outfitted with the same armor as before, though with even better protection. Still couldn't protect you from anything meaningful, though. They're armed with the usual standard kit in addition to melee weapons such as Fire Axes and Power Fists as well as firearms (of mint condition and with virtually unlimited access to) such as .44 Magnum Revolvers, .308 Hunting Rifles, 5.56 × .45mm NATO Marksman Carbines and 12.7mm SMGs. The Decanus of the Legion is the lesser officer beneath the Centurion and is responsible for tactical small-unit operations and squad-level leadership. While not too different from ordinary Legionaries in terms of skill, equipment and even appearance, they still have slightly better access to weapons hence they deserve a separate segment. Recruit Decanii can get access to 9mm SMGs and 10mm SMGs unlike Recruit Legionaries, Prime Decanii aren't any different from Prime Legionaries and Veteran Decanii can get access to 12.7mm Pistols unlike Veteran Legionaries (not a real improvement, I know). Everything else is exactly the same. The Centurion is the absolute apex of the Legion's strength and the top field commanders of Caesar's armies, second in authority only to Legate Lanius and Caesar himself amongst a tiny select few of other superiors. Having survived 15-20 years of a long, arduous life of fighting in Caesar's name (a completely unimaginable phenomenon, indeed) before finally earning the treasured armor of the Centurion (which they can decorate with the trophies of their fallen enemies at their leisure), Centurions are the absolute most elite, most skilled, most battle-hardened and ultimately the most dangerous warriors in the entirety of the Legion. To even BEGIN to qualify for Centurion status, one must have fought in and survived numerous Legion campaigns as well as slain countless opponents in battle alongside the time requirement. All to ensure that only the finest of Caesar's warriors ever reach that level of authority in his Legion. As the oldest, most experienced warriors in Caesar's army, the Centurions comprise the old guard of Caesar's army, most of them having served their lord since the very beginning. Their status all but ensures that they're reserved for only the absolute deadliest, most lethal of assignments that even Veteran Legionaries can't handle. They're ultimately only deployed if absolutely necessary. In order to ensure that his Centurions can both accomplish their missions without even the slightest chance of failure and protect themselves without difficulty, Caesar has granted them unlimited access to the absolute finest weapons in his Legion's arsenal and has seen to it that they have acquired the absolute sharpest firearms skills that money can buy as a corresponding reward for their reaching Centurion status. They're outfitted with Centurion armor which, while legendary amongst the Legion, really isn't that special. It's actually just Veteran Legionary armor with some cool decorations on it at the end of day. Pieces of T-45d Power Armor on the right arm, the sleeve from a suit of NCR Ranger Patrol Armor and the pauldrons from an Armored Vault Suit on the left arm, the boots and shin guards from a suit of First-Generation Combat Armor on the lower legs, the crotch/thigh guards from a suit of NCR Ranger Patrol Armor on the upper legs, gloves from a suit of Leather Armor on the hands and a Super Mutant Brute chestplate on the torso, to be exact. Realistically speaking, Centurion armor would be just about useless against virtually any weapon in the NCR's arsenal. Even a single 5.56 × .45mm NATO round fired from a basic Service Rifle would most certainly do the job, flawlessly. They're armed with basic melee weapons such as Machete Gladius' and Chainsaws as well as high-tech melee weapons such as Thermic Lances (which are actually just repurposed metalworking tools) and Super Sledges in addition to powerful firearms such as .308 Hunting Rifles, 12-gauge Hunting Shotguns, 5.56 x .45mm NATO Marksman Carbines and even .50 BMG Anti-Materiel Rifles (albeit rarely). Now we must now examine what will inevitably be a huge problem for the Legion even if they were to win the Second Battle of Hoover Dam. The Legion, even though it does in fact have access to some top-of-the-line weapons, only has them in an extremely limited capacity and strictly reserves them for only the highest-ranking, most elite Legion forces and field commanders. The overwhelming bulk of the Legion's troops have little-to-no real firearms and what pitifully little that they can get their hands on are in extremely piss-poor condition. Not that it would matter, considering the fact that they don't have the proper training that's necessary to actually use them, much less maintain them. The vast majority of Caesar's troops rely almost entirely on primitive makeshift melee weapons and their own martial prowess to fight their battles, which inevitably means that the Legion has to avoid direct engagement with NCR forces, instead relying on subterfuge and guerilla warfare to combat the Republic. And it gets even worse for the Legion when one considers that the higher that its troops advance up the totem pole, the fewer Legionaries that it finds at the higher levels. A direct consequence of the Legion's overprioritization of quality and individual skill in combat is that it inevitably results in an extremely small cadre of elite warriors and field commanders surrounded by a sea of lesser soldiers and officers. Combined with the fact that the Legion is only 34 years-old by the events of F:NV (meaning that even if one were to ignore things like inevitable attrition all throughout the Legion's war-filled history of expansion and conquest, they still wouldn't have that many Veteran Legionaries/Decanii and Centurions) as well as the fact that attrition over the years must be taken into account (the First Battle of Hoover Dam and the Legion's invasion of Colorado alone absolutely devastated their elite ranks), it's only obvious that the Legion's elite forces are relatively puny. Furthermore, we know for a fact that there's enough Veteran Legionaries/Decanii for them to form a few of their own exclusive Centuria (a Century is 80-men-strong, I might add), with the Red Okie Centuria being a prime example of this. This definitely suggests that the Legion has at least a couple hundred Veteran Legionaries/Decanii at its disposal. As for Centurions, it's a little known fact that they're so incredibly rare in the Legion that they're actually explicitly ordered to not enter combat until absolutely necessary (i.e self-defense or if they're ordered into battle by a superior). This, along with the fact that they're never really seen in any meaningful numbers in-game until the Second Battle of Hoover Dam, strongly suggests that there might only be at most several dozen Centurions in the whole of the Legion (there definitely wouldn't be over 100 of them). Either way, however, the Legion's elite forces are so pathetically tiny that they couldn't possibly justify the Legion having any meaningful amount of high-end weaponry. The NCR, on other hand, doesn't have these problems as 1. the NCR prioritizes protection and firepower above all else for their forces and 2. even their most basic troops have exclusive access to essentially unlimited supplies of all manner of firearms and explosives as well as highly superb protection in the form of military-grade body armor. Meaning that the NCR not only has a hopelessly insurmountable edge in firepower, technology and protection over the Legion, but that soldiers of the NCR also have a far higher life expectancy than their Legion counterparts, as well. All but ensuring that the NCR has a vastly higher volume of surviving battle-hardened combat veterans relative to the Legion that enables for the Republic to easily distribute extremely invaluable, ultimately irreplaceable combat experience and lessons learned in battle across the entirety of their military to a far greater extent than the Legion. Scores of battle-hardened NCR Troopers that distinguish themselves on the battlefield go on to enlist with the NCR Rangers upon receiving an invitation to do so (fun fact: the vast majority of NCR Ranger recruits and even NCR Rangers themselves are/were NCR Troopers who earned their new status while serving in the NCR Army), earn the coveted Salvaged Power Armor and become NCR Heavy Troopers or earn promotions to positions of authority in the NCR Army (prime examples being Colonel Cassandra Moore and Colonel James Hsu). All of the above information will have colossal long-term consequences for the Legion, at the end of the day. With that out of the way, let's move on to the main argument itself. The most positive estimates of the Legion's total numbers and military strength would be at best 5,000-8,000 troops. Then we must take into account the fact that the Legion is going to suffer massive losses (easily numbering into the thousands) taking Hoover Dam from the NCR as the NCR garrison here is extremely well-defended, well-supplied and heavily-fortified by both an entire battalion of elite, battle-hardened NCR Troopers and God only knows how many NCR Patrol Rangers, NCR Heavy Troopers and NCR Veteran Rangers. Combined with the fact that General Oliver's Compound is extremely well-defended with force fields, a turret system, NCR Veteran Rangers, NCR Heavy Troopers, elite NCR Troopers and an absolute labyrinth that's filled to the brim with all manner of booby traps ranging from rigged shotguns, bear traps and mines of all types to grenade bouquets and overhanging objects (and given that you see a pile of fresh Legionary and Centurion corpses at your feet whenever you enter the Compound during the "Veni, Vidi, Vici" quest it's more than safe to assume that Legion casualties will be extremely massive just securing this area alone), this only serves to bolster my claim that thousands of the Legion's troops will perish at Hoover Dam even if they were to take it. With only a mere fraction of their original number (that 5,000-8,000 will have been massively depleted after the Second Battle of Hoover Dam), now the Legion has to set out and secure the rest of the Mojave Wasteland, which will prove to be completely impossible over time. The Legion will find next to no tribes to assimilate as they exterminate the Powder Gangers, Fiends, Vipers, Jackals and the Kings in all of their endings. And while the Legion still has the Great Khans and the Boomers, they won't help much. The Great Khans are down to little more than a pitiful rag-tag band of holdouts after both their ass-whipping at the hands of Mr. House and their decimation at Bitter Springs by the NCR. A fact that only gets worse when we subtract the women and female children (breeding stock), the elderly, the sick and the disabled (killed off immediately) as well as mention the fact that the Frumentarius Karl does say in his journal that the Legion would have to decimate most of the tribe, anyways. Meaning that the Legion will at most get a couple paltry handful of warriors from them. As for the Boomers (assuming that the "Volare!" quest isn't completed) will prove to be more than a huge cost than a real benefit to the Legion. The Boomers' artillery alone would kill hundreds, if not thousands, of Legionaries with the Boomers themselves, armed to the teeth with Missile Launchers, Fat Mans, Grenade Machine Guns, Grenade Launchers, Grenade Rifles, 5.56 x 45mm. Marksman Carbines and 5mm Assault Carbines in addition to Mr. Gutsy combat robots and Sentry Bots, killing hundreds and even thousands more before the Legion finally conquer them. Also consider that the Boomers, who worship their artillery and weapons with a near religious reverence, will by no means let their weapons fall into the hands of savages. Thus we could easily see them sabotaging their artillery (how hard would it be to load an artillery shell and lob a frag grenade down the barrel, after all?; and given that the Boomers only have 3-4 artillery pieces it wouldn't take long to do) and munitions stockpiles (just a few bricks of C4 could easily destroy all of the Boomers' weapons and ammunition supplies) to keep them out of Legion hands, which only adds insult to injury. Even worse for the Legion is that when we subtract those Boomers that died in battle (most likely all of the adult males), the women and female children, the elderly, sick and disabled the Legion will have only a handful of male children to their name (remember that the Boomers are a really puny tribe that depend entirely on their firepower to survive) which means that they will have achieved nothing despite their massive losses incurred from conquering Nellis Air Force Base. Then we also consider the fact that the Legion doesn't enslave civilized communities or Independent Towns unless under extraordinary circumstances (as evidenced by Siri over at the Fort who hailed from an Independent Town in New Mexico and was a medical student there prior to its destruction by the Legion). Of course, it wouldn't matter as even if they did, the entire New Vegas area is completely evacuated by the NCR in the event of a Legion victory at Hoover Dam as evidenced by Arcade Gannon's Legion ending where he's convinced to remain in Freeside (all of Freeside, North Vegas, Westside, East Vegas and the Strip, which is really just a resort for NCR tourists rather than an actual community, are evacuated with those few that don't make it out, Arcade included, being killed by the Legion). And when we consider that Nelson was butchered, Camp Searchlight irradiated and Nipton destroyed by the Legion with Goodsprings being left alone and Primm just falling under Legion authority (no point in enslaving the town anyways considering how it's just one big retirement home alongside Goodsprings which is also evacuated by all save a few old, stubborn folks) then it's blatantly clear that the Legion will have very few civilized people left to enslave. With an even smaller fraction of survivors thanks to their conquest of Nellis AFB (in addition to hundreds more casualties against the Mojave Chapter of the Brotherhood of Steel, the Kings and what's left of House's Securitron police force and the Chairmen) the Legion will soon realize its folly and discover that both holding the Mojave Wasteland and continuing their advance West is literally impossible. The Legion's logistical situation and acquisition of supplies will soon prove to be an insurmountable nightmare within mere weeks of their occupation of the Mojave. The loss of Nipton, Camp Searchlight and Nelson will serve to severely hamstring the Legion's logistics with the eventual deaths of New Vegas, Primm and Goodsprings only complicating the Legion's supply lines even further. As 99% of the Strip's revenue comes from NCR tourists and soldiers on leave and given how the Legion will most likely tear down the casinos and ban whores, booze, chems and gambling under Caesar's law, the Strip will eventually shrivel up and die due to loss of revenue. North Vegas, East Vegas, Westside, Freeside, Primm and Goodsprings, which are entirely dependent on Republic trade and commerce for survival, will eventually suffer the same fate as NCR trade and business abandon the region out of both fear and hatred for the Legion. Especially after the Legion's successful assassination of President Kimball which will see him martyred and ensure that the NCR will cut off all ties to the fallen Mojave Wasteland. With all of the Mojave's communities and towns dying off, the Legion's supply lines will crumble and face imminent collapse within only a few months time (Hoover Dam isn't a viable supply route as while it does allow the Legion to cross the Colorado River in force it's just too far to provide adequate, long-term support) which will only serve to doom the Legion's occupation of the Mojave Wasteland. We must also take into account that the Legion will need every last man, Denarius and resource at its disposal if it so much as hopes to hold the region and continue the advance West. Which will force Caesar to relinquish the Legion's entire empire East of the Colorado in order to do so. In Legate Lanius’ own words, the Legion's expansion campaigns in the East have been faltering badly as Caesar's obsession with Hoover Dam, New Vegas and the West has seen the Legion's full strength syphoned off towards Hoover Dam as part of Caesar's plan to overrun Hoover Dam, conquer New Vegas and eventually invade the West. Imagine the Hell that the Legion will have trying to secure the Mojave Wasteland, which will prove to be so bad that the Legion heartlands will have to be left defenseless, lawless and chaotic just to even begin to make such an ambitious feat even remotely feasible. Some would probably argue that Caesar would surely never abandon the East just for the tiniest, southernmost tip of Nevada and just one little city but I'd advise you to reconsider. Caesar explicitly states that while the Legion does have their own cities back East, NONE OF THEM are ANYTHING like New Vegas. Why is that such a big deal, one might ask? It's simple, really. While the Mojave Wasteland was relatively untouched by the nuclear holocaust that was the Great War, thanks to the quick and decisive actions of Robert Edwin House, New Vegas is at best a total dump and at worst an absolute shithole. Filled to the brim with disease, essentially overrun with Raiders, bandits and common criminals of all stripes, absolutely crushed beneath the iron heel of a colossal drug-addiction crisis, bursting at the seams with abject misery and poverty and rampant with starvation, New Vegas is without a doubt little more than a massive dumpster fire. Things are so bad in that cursed place that you actually have children chasing rats in the streets just to survive, locals constantly complaining about hunger pains and withdrawals and scum ranging from the Fiends to random little hooligan punks constantly ransacking the place. Westside, the South Vegas ruins, East Vegas, North Vegas and Freeside are all Hellish nightmares that are almost completely hopeless causes, at the end of the day. Even if one takes into account the diamond in the rock, the New Vegas Strip, you still wouldn't find many reasons to be impressed. What you have is a tiny wealthy resort community that still looks like a dump (though it's still a major improvement from the rest of New Vegas), has highly dilapidated infrastructure (the Tops Casino still has a giant hole on the side of the building) and is surrounded by a wall that's held together with spit, grit and a whole lotta' duct tape. And while the Strip is safe, orderly and prosperous by the standards of the Mojave Wasteland (a very shit standard, I might add), it's ultimately a very terrible place by the standards of the rest of the post-apocalyptic world (i.e. NCR territory and lands under Legion control). If Legion cities can't even match the standards of that shithole, what does that say about Caesar's willingness to hold them? Especially in light of what he'd be gaining in return? Furthermore, Caesar often tends to view himself as a mere barbaric king of the Gauls, with his Legion being nothing but one big nomadic tribe of savages without a true home or purpose in his eyes, which is extremely depressing. Caesar sees New Vegas as a true city, a true capital, a true home for both himself and his Legion, a true Rome that he can rule over and could preside over a true empire in. And the West as that very true empire that he so desperately relishes. Do you honestly believe that Caesar wouldn't trade his current empire (which he clearly holds in very low esteem and almost regrets ever conquering it) for his new Rome and a stepping stone towards eventually conquering his new Roman Empire (the stepping stone being the Mojave Wasteland)? He'd trade the whole of the East for New Vegas and the Mojave Wasteland in a heartbeat and in doing so will seal the Legion's fate and imminent doom. With the Legion having completely relinquished the East (and therefore cutting themselves off from their resource base, source of revenue/income and escape route, in the process) their supply lines and logistical network in chaos and having absolutely no source of replenishment and reinforcements for their ranks, the Legion will slowly but surely disintegrate, trapped in a permanent holding pattern in the Mojave that'll bleed them dry and drain them of all their resources. The NCR, meanwhile, will have simply dug in at the Mojave Outpost and fortified their defenses there. They'd have most certainly brought in the 3 VB-02 Vertibirds (which are armed with Gatling Lasers, Missile Launcher racks and Mini Nuke Launchers and outfitted with heavy armor) that were conducting combat air patrols of the NCR military base just a few miles away from the Mojave Outpost. Far from stopping there, however, Colonel Royez (who's outfitted with the Scorched Sierra Power Armor which is a fully-operational suit of heavily-modified T-45d Power Armor upgraded with onboard medical systems capable of healing any injury and an improved back-mounted power pack from a suit of T-51b Power Armor that will be capable of resisting nearly all of the Legion's weapons and armed with a Plasma Caster chock full of overcharged Microfusion Cells so incredibly strong that it can kill a lvl. 50 Courier in Power Armor with just 2-3 hits!) and his men (NCR Heavy Troopers armed to the teeth with Gatling Lasers, Plasma Casters and Tesla Cannons as well as NCR Troopers armed with Tri-Beam Laser Rifles, Multiplas Rifles, Laser Rifles and Plasma Rifles) will also redeployed there from the same military camp, as well. Republic artillery pieces can also be deployed there to help bolster the outpost's defenses, as well. A massive network of bunkers, pillboxes and trenches all along the hill below the outpost as well as machine gun nests, sniper nests, minefields and razorwire can also be established to further enhance the impregnable defensive perimeter of the new frontline. Once all of this is done, the NCR will then proceed to flood the outpost with tens of thousands of NCR Troopers, NCR Heavy Troopers, NCR Veteran Rangers And when coupled with the fact that the Mojave Outpost is atop a high hill, is flanked by mountain ranges on both sides (which will completely prevent the Legion from attacking its flanks and rear), is right on the border with fully-controlled Republic territory (which will make it impossibly easy to keep well-supplied and will also ensure that Republic reinforcements are plentiful and easily available) and the fact that one could see everything up to Primm and Nipton from the Mojave Outpost (that particular area is also wide-open, completely exposed and lacks any real cover which means that any Legion force of any meaningful size would be spotted from miles away day or night which in turn will prevent Legion surprise attacks), the Mojave Outpost will truly become a 100% impregnable fortress. To make things even worse for the Legion, there's absolutely no bypassing the Mojave Outpost either as the only areas that can allow such a short cut around the Long 15 are completely and literally impassable. The Big Empty is often described as a wall to any living thing approaching it, the Divide is little more than a death trap and is completely avoided by the Legion for obvious reasons and Death Valley is so inhospitable that even the NCR, with its fleet of military cargo trucks and Vertibirds, flat out avoids that area out of habit. Any army stupid enough to try and cross through these areas will not return alive under any circumstances. Which in turn ensures that only through the Long 15 can the Legion hope to invade the West and given that the Mojave Outpost is purely impenetrable and that the Mojave Wasteland is completely entrapped with mountains and the Colorado River, the Legion will be completely trapped in the Mojave Wasteland and will never be freed from their holding pattern there. The NCR simply bides its time and let's the Legion wear itself out and tear itself apart trying to hold the Mojave Wasteland, occasionally fending off Legion assaults on the Mojave Outpost whilst inflicting heavy losses on the Legion, launching several limited-scale offensives here and there so as to deplete the Legion's ranks even further and deploying NCR Veteran Rangers into the Mojave Wasteland so as to ambush Legion supply caravans and patrols to worsen the Legion's logistical nightmare. After almost a year, the Legion will finally be vulnerable, it's forces stretched absolutely thin down to their absolute breaking point, their supply lines and logistics completely exhausted and expended alongside their supplies as a whole, the Legion's ranks reduced to little more than a tiny skeleton crew, the Legion completely scattered across the entire Mojave Wasteland unable to guard it or defend it any longer and the Colorado River at its back, with absolutely no way of escaping their inevitable demise. At this moment, the NCR finally attacks with a full-scale assault across the entirety of the Mojave, completely and utterly destroying the Legion in its entirety and killing/capturing Caesar himself as Republic forces swarm across New Vegas and wipe out his Legion all around him within mere hours, days if the Legion is lucky. And so the NCR-Legion War finally draws to a close, with the back of the Legion broken forever and ceasing to exist. Either way the Legion is fucked with a Legion defeat at the Second Battle of Hoover Dam being a mercy killing at best for the Legion. (Sources are down below in the comments section).
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