Parliament donnybrook, Local Gov changes, Misha in Kiev, proc arrest for fake vid, thief in law murder nab, Internat Anti-Corruption day, Margvel ambos, Obama writes BI, Margvel on Mandiba, June local elections, Narmania tents, Papuashvili Venice Comish, Telavi tenders Stalin exit, Hanakkah whacks wrist slap, Kutaisi candy, RR numbers, Geo biz #50, investments up, architecture book, big shuki cut, new Norio dump, Khudoni damn protest, 5 mil MP housing, Cassels in Tbl, Sochi flights, budget, Antelava v de Waal, Georgian Jihadi, TI on UNM procurement, average tourist spend, Apollo photos

2 thoughts on “TBLPOD12dec2013

  1. President Barack Obama sent a letter to the former Prime Minister BI: “Dear Mr. Ivanishvili: It was a pleasure to work with your government during your tenure as Prime Minister of Georgia. As you leave office, I wanted to convey my respect for the role you played in Georgia’s continued democratic developments and in the deepening of U.S.- Georgia relations.
    The accomplishments during your term, coupled with successful elections and a peaceful and democratic transfer of power, have strengthened Georgia. I want to thank you for Georgia’s support of your collective efforts in Afghanistan and appreciate the significant contributions and sacrifices made by the Georgian Armed Forces.
    I look forward to working with Prime Minister Gharibashvili, and will continue to support Georgia’s Euro- Atlantic integration as well as its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
    I send you my best wishes for much success and happiness in your future endeavors.”

    The MEME this week is a brawl in parliament. UNM MP Gia Baramidze was discussing condemning the crackdown on protesters in Kiev, Georgian Dream MP Soso Jachvliani an actor and majoritarian from Gldani, called Baramidze a hypocrite because of what Misha’s government did and specifically Baramidze himself did in a raid in Svaneti when he was Defense Minister. Then everybody got involved to pull Soso apart. It is all over the international press and makes Georgia look like a collection of clowns. Baramidze is pretty hot headed but Jachvliani started it. It will be interesting to see if he is sanctioned. Link: http://goo.gl/pAiWzl


    Natalia Antelava’s response to Thomas de Waal’s recent article “So Long, Saakashvili”. The author criticizes de Waal saying Misha was largely about PR. Antelava takes issue with de Waal’s characterization that the Russia-Georgia war in 2008 was Misha’s fault. She quotes a certain twelve year son of a friend in 2012 asking what corruption is. Link: http://goo.gl/GQjNdj

    A great article by Michael Cecire on the local government reform, which the Patriarch recently came out against. The author discusses how this reform, which would increase the number of directly elected positions, will decentralize power and potentially increase regional economic development. Link: http://goo.gl/jXnhBG

    Vice.com published an article “JIHAD SELFIES: THESE BRITISH EXTREMISTS IN SYRIA LOVE SOCIAL MEDIA”. The article discusses how social media and jihadists, especially those from the UK, show off and brag about their activities in Syria. One of the pictures shows Omar Shishani, a Georgian Kist along with a British fighter Ibrahim al-Mazwagi who was killed during the civil war in February. Shishani is now the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s military commander in Northern Syria. Link: http://goo.gl/A6sm5k

    TI Georgia’s report “Simplified Procurement: corruption risks in non-Competitive government contracts” in which TI analyzed more than 430,000 non-competitive government contracts awarded between December 2010 and September 2013. Last year, these contracts accounted for 18% of all government spending, equal to 4.7% of GDP. TI Georgia found that companies fully or partly owned by several current and past MPs benefitted from non-competitively awarded government contracts. This is a great report. It is the clearest illustration yet into the corruption and collusion under Misha and shows very clearly how government money was illegally kept within the party and those not in the party were shut out. Link: http://goo.gl/vBUIlG

    An article by Nikoloz Pkhakadze and Florian Biermann on economic and political clusterings. If you ever wondered why you can buy hammocks and similar handicraft stuff in various places close to Khashuri, but nowhere else, “Tonis Puri” and “Nazuqi” only around Surami, Baskets and wooden vessels and clay products around Shorsha, you should definitely read the article. The answer has to do with the benefits of clustering, which can explain not only economic decisions but the political decisions of coalitions as well. Link: http://goo.gl/GNmHE9

    Architect Magazine devotes its cover story this month to the architect, J. Mayer H. Architects, and the motivations behind those Gori rest stops, the Mestia airport and Lazika weirdness as well as others. Their work is crap for those who don’t know but the article is very much worth a read to see how they ended up building that garbage. Link: http://goo.gl/ll8XPZ

    A story about Nelson Mandela by Mark Mullen in medium.com. Link: http://goo.gl/Zysw22


    On the 13th of December, the old cinema “Apollo” on Aghmashenebeli Avenue # 135 will host Dina Oganova’s photo exhibition “My Place”. The exhibition presents photos and personal stories of people who were born in the USSR and grew up in independent Georgia. For more information visit Dikarka.ge. Great photographer, go see this show. By the way, this is a beautiful theater that used to have beautiful plaster work with its name in Russian from the turn of the century that was unfortunately removed in 2011. Anybody know who owns that building by the way?

    On the 21st of December, the annual award ceremony for innovative pop culture “Electronaut 2013” will be held. The winners in different categories will be chosen not by online voters but by an international jury. For additional info visit: facebook.com/Electronauts

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