. . . The Houston chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations called on authorities to investigate a possible bias motive in the case.
“Because of the recent spike in hate incidents targeting mosques nationwide, we urge law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive for this fire,” said CAIR-Houston Executive Director Mustafaa Carroll. . .
But less than a week later, a frequent worshipper at the mosque was arrested for the crime. No apologies from CAIR were heard.
A Houston man has been arrested in connection with a suspected arson at a mosque on Christmas Day, but the motive for the crime remains a mystery, with the suspect maintaining he was a regular at the mosque. . . .
Below, the arsonist, Gary Nathaniel Moore, at the time of his arrest. He was recognized from a surveillance video.
The good news is that the arsonist was recently sentenced to four years in prison for the fire, with no mention of his motivation. But if Moore just liked seeing things burn as a true pyromaniac would, why incinerate a mosque rather than an infidel structure? Continue reading this article
As wages stagnate in the middle class, it becomes hard to reverse this trend
Barely half of 30-year-olds earn more than their parents did at a similar age, a research team found, an enormous decline from the early 1970s when the incomes of nearly all offspring outpaced their parents. Even rapid economic growth won’t do much to reverse the trend.
Economists and sociologists from Stanford, Harvard and the University of California set out to measure the strength of what they define as the American Dream, and found the dream was fading. They identified the income of 30-year-olds starting in 1970, using tax and census data, and compared it with the earnings of their parents when they were about the same age.
In 1970, 92% of American 30-year-olds earned more than their parents did at a similar age, they found. In 2014, that number fell to 51%.
“My parents thought that one thing about America is that their kids could do better than they were able to do,” said Raj Chetty, a prominent Stanford University economist who emigrated from India at age 9 and is part of the research team. “That was important in my parents’ decision to come here.”
Although there are many definitions of the American Dream—the freedom to speak your mind, for instance, or the ability to rise from poverty to wealth—the economists chose a measure that they said was possible to define precisely.
The percentage of young adults earning more than their parents dropped precipitously from 1970 to about 1992, to 58%, found Mr. Chetty, Maximilian Hell and David Grusky of Stanford University, Nathaniel Hendren and Robert Manduca of Harvard University, and Jimmy Narang of the University of California at Berkeley.
Kudos to the Los Angeles Times for an excellent report of how automation displaces human workers in a warehouse environment, which unfortunately is a pattern followed by many industries: bring in the smart machines and employ fewer human workers.
Amazon has been the leader of warehouse robotics, with its proprietary Kiva machines, and has received enormous media attention for its incredibly fast processing and shipment of customer orders made possible by modern technology. However, other technologies have been developed to perform similar tasks in other distribution sites.
The Times headline reveals a lot: “Warehouses promised lots of jobs, but robot workforce slows hiring.” Just a few years ago, when the Skechers warehouse/distribution center for Moreno Valley was initially proposed, the facility was expected to provide lots of jobs for local folks. But the technology has come on so rapidly that the final employment offered turned out to be far less than hoped.
The best policy that Trump could pursue regarding employment would be to end immigration entirely, because the work universe is shrinking rapidly, and Americans will need all the remaining jobs. In fact,
Automation makes immigration obsolete.
Back to the Skechers warehouse, check out the cheerful video, brimming with efficient conveyor belts sending boxes of product off to purchasers, but with a notable lack of human workers:
Below, a Skechers automated warehouse shows shoes in chutes ready for shipment.
Where are shoppers supposed to come from in the jobless future? Captains of industry aren’t interested in that part of the market equation.
When Skechers started building a colossal distribution center in Moreno Valley six years ago, backers promised a wave of new jobs.
Instead, by the time the company moved to the Moreno Valley, it had closed five facilities in Ontario that employed 1,200 people and cut its workforce by more than half. Today, spotting a human on the premises can feel like an accomplishment.
There are now only about 550 people working at one cavernous warehouse, which is about as big as two Staples Centers combined. Many of them sit behind computer screens, monitoring the activities of the facility’s true workhorses: robotic machines.
It’s a sign of things to come.
In the last five years, online shopping has produced tens of thousands of new warehouse jobs in California, many of them in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. The bulk of them paid blue collar people decent wages to do menial tasks – putting things in boxes and sending them out to the world.
But automated machines and software have been taking up more and more space in the region’s warehouses, and taking over jobs that were once done by humans. Today, fewer jobs are being added, though some of them pay more.
Amazon, one of the biggest dogs in warehousing, has built 20 new fulfillment centers outfitted with robotics in the last three years, four in California. Since 2014, the company has added 50,000 warehouse workers nationwide — and more than 30,000 robots.
Robots are muscling their way into almost every single occupation, but they pose a direct and immediate threat to people working in storage, industry experts say. That work is repetitive and fits into a chain of supply and delivery that generates reams of data.
For the nation’s 879,800 warehouse workers, 102,800 of whom are in California, profound change is already here.
“The modern warehouse tends to be creating fewer jobs…. Automation is replacing the lowest-end jobs,” said Chris Thornberg, a founding partner at Beacon Economics, a Los Angeles consulting firm.
That shift mirrors the path taken by American manufacturing, where there are fewer jobs going to more qualified people. It underscores how tricky it will be for President-elect Donald Trump to follow through on his promise restore American assembly jobs en masse. Continue reading this article
The asylum racket has been growing by leaps and bounds as the open-borders president’s term reaches the end: if an illegal alien border crosser says he is a victim in just the right way, he gets on the royal road to eventual legality and lots of free stuff.
Washington Times reporter Stephen Dinan recently wrote about the current uptick in illegal asylum claimers and appeared on Fox Business Tuesday to explain the details, noting:
STEPHEN DINAN: This has been going on for a while. What really happened is an exponential increase in the number of people who are showing up at the border, either being arrested by the Border Patrol or showing up at an official port of entry. These are illegal immigrants: they arrive and when they get here, they’ve been coached to use as you said “magic words” that entitle them to at least beginning the asylum process and under Obama administration policy from 2009 once they begin that process they’re usually let free into the US while they await their proceedings and their hearings, giving them a chance to disappear along with the rest of the illegal immigrants already in the country.
Nearly one out of every 10 illegal immigrants crossing the southwest border is now demanding asylum, using “magic words” to claim they fear their home country, and turning a program intended to be a humanitarian lifeline into a new path for unauthorized migrants to gain a foothold in the U.S.
It’s a major change over just the last five years as lax Obama administration policies entice ever-more migrants to try to exploit the loophole, which the Border Patrol’s chief calls a “fail in policy.”
In 2010, less than 1 percent of those at the border were requesting asylum from the agents or officers who nabbed them. Now it’s 9 percent, according to statistics the Immigration Reform Law Institute pried loose from the government through an open-records request and provided to The Washington Times.
The migrants are being coached by friends and family or smugglers, who collect thousands of dollars per person for their efforts, on the “magic words” to say to get put on the asylum track, border officials say.
“We know that they’re coaching individuals on specifically what to say when they come here, that they just rattle off and they memorize the magic words that they need to say so that they’ll fall within the statute of credible fear,” Border Patrol Chief Mark Morgan told the Senate Homeland Security Committee in a hearing last week.
Most recently thousands of Haitians who have been living in South America since a 2010 earthquake in their home country have swarmed northward, claiming asylum when they reach California. They were arriving at a rate of more than 100 a day.
Central Americans have also caught on, helping feed the surge of children and families straining border operations in Texas.
Open borders are bad enough, but when the im-vaders are muslim unfriendlies, they have the added force multiplier of polygamy which can create enormous families, thereby causing rapid demographic change.
In 2005, I blogged about polygamous families sleeping in shifts in France because apartments are designed for monogamous groupings: there are so many ways in which Islam does not fit in the West.
MODERATOR: Let us hear Mr. Bardarov too, who has been quietly listening to our discussion so far from the height of his position as a man of letters, a demographer and so on… how he sees all this process — an ordinary refugee crisis or a civilizational shift, and what did we, Bulgarians, learn about ourselves from this crisis?
GEORGI BARDAROV (Associate Professor, Sofia University): My opinion is that we have been witnessing global changes since the beginning of the 21st century, and this is not some kind of temporary phenomenon. What puzzles me are other processes: that Europe turned out to be unprepared for this refugee wave, given the data from UN and Eurostat that I used four years ago for my monograph — “Immigration, conflicts and transformation of identities in the EU”. The UN published a chart that predicted 1.5 million immigrants per year as far back as 2007, 1.2 million from Asia, 377,000 from Africa each year.
If it really happens every year, if they were to be as many as last year, this means that by the middle of the century there will be about 60 million new immigrants, and taken together with those already living on the continent and their high birth rate, this makes about 100 million by the mid-21st century. So we really are witnessing a global change, It is not without precedent in world history — It is enough to recall the Migration Period, when the ancient world was populated by barbarian tribes, or the settling of the New World by Europeans during the 19th and 20th centuries. Continue reading this article
Sunday’s Sixty Minutes episode had an interesting segment about the growth of manufacturing in the United States. The show focused on the economic developer Joe Max Higgins, who is both colorful in the southern style and business smart. Nevertheless, the piece provides a window on modern manufacturing, where robots do the repetitious tasks and human workers need technical knowledge for the new factory jobs.
Below, the PACCAR engine manufacturing plant in Mississippi has lots of robots and around 500 human workers.
(If the video below doesn’t work, try the CBS Sixty Minutes link below to watch.)
It’s a good news, bad news story: manufacturing is actually going strong in America, but far fewer jobs are being created because of automation and its increased efficiency. For example, one new steel mill in the story needs only 650 workers when it earlier would have required 4000 for the same productivity.
So America does not need any immigrant workers from Mexico or anywhere else.
Joe Max Higgins is credited with generating about 6,000 manufacturing jobs in Mississippi’s Golden Triangle, one of the poorest areas in the country. How’s he doing it? Bill Whitaker reports.
Bill Whitaker: This past week, Donald Trump cut his first deal as president-elect. He leaned on Carrier, the heating and air conditioning company, to keep 1,000 jobs in Indiana from going to Mexico. The company got a generous tax break in return. In the last few decades, America has lost millions of factory jobs offshore. But you might be surprised to learn U.S. manufacturing is showing signs of coming back due to cheap energy, proximity to customers, and a rising cost of labor in China. Nearly a million manufacturing jobs have been created since the Great Recession. About 350,000 are unfilled because factories can’t find properly trained American workers. The new plants demand more brainpower than brawn. It’s called advanced manufacturing and if you want to see what it looks like you need to go a place off the beaten track: The Golden Triangle. That’s a bit of a misnomer because it’s one of the poorest regions in the poorest state: Mississippi.
If you have heard of the Golden Triangle, it might be because of this: Mississippi State football. Around here, everybody loves the Bulldogs. And “bulldog” is an apt description of the man who runs economic development for the area: Joe Max Higgins. He considers job creation a full contact sport.
Joe Max Higgins: The only way we win any deal is to tear off everybody else’s face. We gotta kill everybody to win the deal.
Ferocity is a job requirement. During the recession, unemployment in some parts of the Triangle got as high as 20 percent.
Joe Max Higgins: We’re going to come up with a program.
At 6.0 percent, unemployment is now just above the national average and a lot of people here credit Joe Max Higgins. He has attracted $6 billion of advanced industry including this mill run by Steel Dynamics. It’s one of the most hi-tech steel mills in the country. He got this helicopter factory up and running. Truck maker PACCAR used to build engines only in Europe. It opened its first U.S. plant in the Triangle.
Bill Whitaker: Companies were moving around, this offshoring. They were going to countries where everything’s cheaper?
Joe Max Higgins: For some companies, offshore wasn’t as great as they thought it was or as it was portrayed to be. Many of the companies said “Hey, if it’s gonna be consumed in the U.S., we can produce it in the U.S. cheaper and more efficiently than we can elsewhere and bring it in.”
Bill Whitaker: They save money by being here in Mississippi?
Joe Max Higgins: Uh-huh.
Higgins has brought in 6,000 jobs to the tri-county area since 2003. That might not sound like a lot to people in big cities. But to the people here in the small towns of the Golden Triangle, it amounts to about half the manufacturing jobs lost during the last 25 years. Through the 1990s, factories here produced textiles, toys, and tubing. One by one, they shut down and thousands of low skilled jobs vanished. Continue reading this article
It’s obvious Green Party candidate Jill Stein is running a scam when she complains about voter machine hacking by the Russians, which is impossible on a widespread basis, while she doesn’t care about illegal alien voting, which could in fact be quite numerous.
PAUL GIGOT: A vote recount got underway in Wisconsin Thursday, part of a push initiated by Green Party candidate Jill Stein that includes Michigan and Pennsylvania as well it claims of voting irregularities in these battleground states. President-elect Donald Trump took to Twitter to blast the recount effort as a scam while alleging serious voter fraud in Virginia New Hampshire and California tweeting last Sunday quote “In addition to winning the electoral college in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.”
Hans von Spakovsky is a former member of the Federal Election Commission and a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation. He is also co-author of the book “Who’s counting? How fraudsters and bureaucrats put your vote at risk.” So welcome to the program. Let’s start with the recount: is there any evidence of enough voter fraud in these states to overturn the election outcome?
HANS VAN SPOKOVSKY: Well remember, Jill Stein is not claiming voter fraud; she’s claiming hacking of the voting machines. She has absolutely no evidence of any kind to do that and in fact the way that those machines work, they are not tied into a central computer system, they are not networked, that is, the machines for example that scan ballots. So that the ability of hackers to get into is just about nil. This is a complete and total waste of time by Jill Stein.
GIGOT: Just to just to take her suggestion of a hacking seriously for a second, what would a hacker have to do in our decentralized electoral system to be able to influence the outcome of the result? How would they have penetrated so many different sites?
VAN SPOKOVSKY: They could for example — most electronic voting machines again — they’re not networked, so you’d have to get physical access to each electronic voting machine. Similarly in precincts that use paper ballots, the kind that are optically scanned by a computer, you’s have to get somehow physical access to the computer scanner and that is almost impossible. So the chances of this being hacked, it’s just about nil. Continue reading this article
The new sheriff isn’t even in town yet, and he is having a big impact already. Carlos Manuel Sada Solana, the Mexican ambassador to U.S. visited Phoenix recently to spread some propaganda around, like how Mexico is a friendly neighbor.
Funny, I have a different impression — along with millions of other Americans. Let’s review some recent history:
Mexican American Legal Defense Fund founder Mario Obledo stated in 1998, “California is going to be a Hispanic state. Anyone who doesn’t like it should leave. Every constitutional office in California is going to be held by Hispanics in the next 20 years.” People who don’t like such demographic changes “should go back to Europe.” (Incidentally, Mr. Obledo was also the California Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare under Gov. Jerry Brown during his first reign.)
Less recently, Mexico considered a proposal to join Germany in WWI to go to war against the US with the return of the American Southwest offered as a prize (brought to light with the revelations of the Zimmerman Telegram).
Somebody should ask Ambassador Solana whether Mexico has disavowed its Aztlan plan about the reconquista of the Southwest? Seeking to seize a huge expanse of American territory certainly defines an enemy.
Carlos Manuel Sada Solana, the Mexican ambassador to U.S., talks to The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com about the Trump presidency and NAFTA..
PHOENIX — If President-elect Donald Trump follows through with his campaign promise to build a border wall that Mexico will pay for, he can expect to run into a wall of his own: the Mexican government.
Mexico’s top diplomat to the U.S. says there is no way Mexico will pay for the wall. Not only that, a wall would send a “negative” message that would undermine years of economic and diplomatic cooperation between the two countries that contrary to public perception has benefited both countries.
That cross-border relationship includes the creation of more than 100,000 jobs in Arizona.
“We have said time and again Mexico is not paying for the wall,” Carlos Manuel Sada Solana, Mexico’s ambassador to the U.S., said Wednesday during a meeting with reporters and editors at The Arizona Republic, azcentral.com and La Voz.
“That is something that has been said several times by the president of Mexico, the secretary of foreign affairs, secretary of economy, the secretary of finance,” he continued. “So we are not paying for the wall.”
Sada also balked at Trump’s suggestion that he may try to force Mexico to pay for a border wall by taxing money transfers, called remittances, from workers in the U.S. to their families in Mexico.
Attempting to tax remittances would raise “legal issues” that Mexico would fight, Sada said.
“There is also legal issues that are at stake, and if that is one of the alternatives, we will find out what we have to do in that case. But this is not a deliberate action for Mexico to pay for the wall,” he said.
Sada also pointed out that fencing and other types of barriers already exist along 700 miles of the 2,000-mile-long border, including in Arizona. Building an actual wall could hurt the environment and curtail trade between the two countries. Continue reading this article
More than half of federal prosecutions now concern immigration, which was not always the case.
Reporter William La Jeunesse rattled off a series of statistics, most of which painted a picture of Obama-fueled open border chaos.
TUCKER CARLSON: President-elect Trump’s campaign promised to crack down heavily on illegal immigration, a phenomenon that, among many other things, costs America tens of billions of dollars each year, and clogs the federal courts much more than any of us knew. How severe is the problem? Our correspondent William La Jeunesse dug up the numbers, actually went to the numbers, like anyone else and joins us now from our West Coast bureau with his report. William thanks for coming on. What did you find?
WILLIAM LA JEUNESSE: Tucker, you could argue that border security doesn’t begin at the border; it starts in Washington where policy is set, so here’s the headline for this story: more than half of all federal prosecutions are immigration-related. That’s 52 percent compared to 12 percent for drugs, six percent for weapons, four percent organized crime, 26 percent for everything else.
So you got 70,000 prosecutions for people illegally entering the US, 63,000 for everything else, where just four years ago, drugs was number one. You go back to 1992, immigration was just two percent of the caseload not 52 percent. Now 77 or 70,000 sounds like a lot, but remember the Border Patrol apprehended 400,000 illegals this year, so 20 percent are being prosecuted. Also 70,000 is down from 95,000 four years ago, so we’re prosecuting less, not more, over the last four years. But this is opposite of catch and release, which many people would argue is happening to some extent today.
Secondly I spoke to the former US Attorney Pete Nunez for San Diego. He said when an immigrant gets six months to two years in prison for entering illegally, that sends a message. Secondly the real value in prosecuting is a single conviction will bar an immigrant from applying to legally enter for 10 years. That is a huge deterrent, but of course it’s not cheap when it costs 25 grand to put somebody in prison, but none of this addresses the real problem that the Border Patrol’s experiencing right now which isn’t Mexicans trying to sneak in, but Central Americans wanting asylum.
New figures from the Center for Immigration Studies’ Jessica Vaughan shows that the US resettled 59,000 children from Central America this fiscal year. That’s up 25,000 from 2015 and just last week the Border Patrol caught on average 247 unaccompanied children per day. That doesn’t count families which is about the same amount. So the point is that agents right now are saying these people should not be getting asylum, but under President Obama they’re getting a court date for which 51 percent of the children, 84 percent of the families, don’t show up to court.
CARLSON: Amazing, the talking point you keep hearing is that net migration is going back to Mexico but you’re saying really the problem is from Central America. Continue reading this article
Nothing demonstrates the moral depravity of liberalism more than its support for sanctuary zones where illegal alien criminals are safeguarded, and public safety for law-abiding citizens is threatened as a result.
Don’t liberals say they would destroy the Second Amendment if it would save just one life? Sanctuary policy is a proven killer and violates federal statutes, yet the left loves the border violators more than law and safety.
San Francisco anti-sovereignty Supervisor David Campos led a rally on Tuesday to promote state-sponsored anarchy. Local station KTVU covered the event and included comments from Rick Oltman, a friend of law and borders:
San Francisco Supervisor Campos (a former illegal alien himself) now is working to allocate $5 million in taxpayer funds to provide legal representation for illegal aliens residing in the city, which must be cheerful news for immigration lawyers.
Supervisor David Campos on Tuesday plans to propose spending $5 million to provide legal representation to immigrants living in the country without documentation who face deportation. It’s the first test of whether San Francisco officials will stick to their pledge to remain a sanctuary city when Donald Trump becomes president.
Campos spent much of Monday huddled in his office with Public Defender Jeff Adachi, immigration advocates and others to hammer out details. Campos is hopeful there will be a vote on the legislation by the Board of Supervisors by Dec. 13, his last scheduled meeting before being termed out of office and less than six weeks before Trump’s inauguration.
The president-elect has vowed to deport up to 3 million undocumented immigrants who have criminal records and decide later what to do with the rest of the estimated 11 million immigrants in the country without legal standing. He has also pledged to strip all federal funding from sanctuary cities like San Francisco, which shield such immigrants from federal immigration agents. In San Francisco, that could total $1 billion a year.
Immediately after Trump’s election, Mayor Ed Lee and the Board of Supervisors were adamant that San Francisco would remain a sanctuary city despite Trump’s threats. There are an estimated 44,000 immigrants living in the city without proper documentation.
Campos’ legislation is the first concrete proposal to his fellow politicians to make good on that pledge. Backfilling a $1 billion loss of federal funds could be a challenge as city officials grapple with funding shortfalls caused by higher-than-expected pension costs and the failure of a proposed sales tax increase on the November ballot.
“This is part and parcel of being a sanctuary city, making sure we are prepared for what we know is coming, what the president-elect has said is coming,” said Campos, who as a child entered the country illegally with his family from Guatemala, but is now a U.S. citizen. “You can’t on the one hand say you’re going to defend sanctuary and then on the other hand not take concrete steps to make that happen.” Continue reading this article
Sunday’s San Jose Mercury News front page featured a humorous cartoon of California leaving Trump’s America for a future of blissful separate grooviness fueled by marijuana and excellent wine.
The paper also points out more soberly that a divorce isn’t up to the state alone, but is a complex, nearly impossible national process. (The aftermath of the Civil War saw to that.) And the dollar cost would be ginormous.
And what’s behind the hysterical refusal to accept the Trump election? Did libs see the election of Obama (a far left black man) as a kind of end-of-history moment and the beginning of a millennium of uber-left open-borders lawless multiculturalism? It seems that way, particularly with all the accusations of racism against Trump — although the R-word is the universal shriek these days.
Plus, an independent California would look very tasty to moocher Mexico. As the Mexican population grows in the state, they would likely squawk for joining up with their beloved homeland. Liberaloons at large are stupid enough to go for it.
Interest in a previously anonymous California independence movement surged following Donald Trump’s election, but leaving the union is not a realistic option
We’ve got more people than Canada, a bigger economy than France, and enough farms to feed half the world and leave the other half stoned out of their minds.
So could California really go it alone? Or is this independence “Calexit” thing just its latest pipe dream?
Despite what you might be hearing, the question is purely theoretical. The only way California can secede from the United States is if the rest of the nation lets us. And despite all the snarky online comments about a latte-drinking, Tesla-driving, water-gun-toting Republic of California – they’re not going to set us free.
Still, for many liberal Californians, Donald Trump’s election made them question their state’s place in the union, said Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, a veteran political analyst at the University of Southern California. Instead of seeing ourselves as steering the nation toward its multiethnic, tech-friendly future, we suddenly feel as if we’re getting shoved backward.
“Right now California is the polar opposite of what is going on politically, culturally and in some cases economically in Donald Trump’s America,” she said. Continue reading this article
You don’t see many news reports like this one where a relative few human jobs are lost when smart machines are brought in.
I suspect there are many more instances of a few dozen job cuts here and there that never make it to the newspapers or internet. It’s just the company upgrading equipment to become more efficient, so it’s not really news. But the effect of technological unemployment is cumulative and is at least partly responsible for the jobless recovery.
The production of eyeglasses is becoming more automated.
There probably aren’t many optical production specialists flooding across the Rio Grande to steal American jobs. Still, the jobs universe is shrinking enormously because of automation, so it is foolish for the United States to continue with immigration of any legality as a normal government policy. We should end immigration because it has become obsolete — like homesteading, which was stopped after the west was settled.
Wal-Mart has cut 91 jobs at its optical lab in Dallas after installing new manufacturing equipment.
The lab, which is one of three where Wal-Mart makes prescription eyeglasses, will now employ 430 people.
While trade policies were a big issue in the presidential election, manufacturing jobs are still being lost in the U.S. to automation. Last year, Wal-Mart said it would spend $10 million to upgrade manufacturing equipment at its Fayetteville, Ark.; Crawfordsville, Ind.; and Dallas optical labs.
The other facilities aren’t affected by the decision, said Wal-Mart spokeswoman Anne Hatfield.
Prescription eyeglasses are the only product that Wal-Mart manufactures, start-to-finish, in-house. The three labs serve 3,500 Wal-Mart stores with optical centers. The Dallas lab opened in 1995, and Wal-Mart started making eyeglasses in 1991. Continue reading this article
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