On the evening of May 11, after the inspection tour to Chengdu, Zhao Haozhi, Deputy Secretary of the Qingdao Municipal Party Committee and Mayor of Qingdao, led the Qingdao party and government delegation to Shenzhen again for investigation and study, demonstrating Qingdao’s determination to learn from Shenzhen. In the past two years, new changes have taken place in Shenzhen and Qingdao, and Qingdao has new ideas and demands for learning. According to the inspection sites arranged this time, the one-day itinerary involves six aspects, including digital city, financial technology, culture and tourism industry, and innovative enterprises, all of which are areas where Qingdao is seeking solutions. First stop: Qianhai International Conference Center Highlight: A site to show Shenzhen’s ambition To learn from Shenzhen, we must first understand its ambition. During this trip to Shenzhen, Qianhai International Conference Center become the first stop for the delegation to know more about Shenzhen. Qianhai International Conference Center actively plays the role of promoting the city and industrial development of the Qianhai area, constantly strives to hold major home diplomatic activities to meet the growing needs of high-end business, government affairs, international exchanges, etc., and provides in-depth services for Shenzhen-Hong Kong cooperation and the coordinated development of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. In Qingdao, there is also a building similar in history, positioning, and function to Qianhai International Conference Center. In 2018, Qingdao International Conference Center, as the main venue of the Qingdao Summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, also becomes Qingdao’s city reception hall after the summit. How to use this building at a higher level is also an important point for Qingdao to learn from Shenzhen. Second stop: Shenzhen Municipal Government Management Service Command Center Highlight: The urban brain that can perceive and think In the Shenzhen Municipal Government Management Service Command Center, a 100-square-meter high-definition LED large screen displays 14 thematic information such as the city’s economic operation, ecological environment, government services, and urban governance. The city’s 82 sets of systems, 100 types of business data from various departments, and 380,000 multi-channel video data have been accessed. The center masters more than 200 first-level indicators of urban vital signs monitoring, and serves as the brain that can perceive and think, commanding the operation of the smart city. What Shenzhen is exploring is also the direction Qingdao is striving for. During the investigation and study, Zhao Haozhi proposed that we should earnestly learn from the experience of Shenzhen, accelerating the construction of new infrastructure represented by 5G, strengthening the empowerment application of data resources in social governance, convenient services, public security, innovation and entrepreneurship, industrial development and other fields, and speeding up the construction of digital Qingdao, and build a higher-level smart city. Third stop: Ping An International Finance Centre Highlight: A master of financial technology In the context of the new round of scientific and technological revolution, finance and technology are deeply integrated, and it has become the consensus of the industry that science and technology should be combined with finance. With a group of world-leading giant financial technology companies such as Ping An of China, WeBank, and Tencent Financial Technology, Shenzhen has become a leader in financial technology in the Asia-Pacific region. When it comes to Qingdao, the financial industry is the pillar industry of the city. At the same time, Qingdao also shoulders the important task of the country’s comprehensive financial reform experiment of the national wealth management and the application pilot of national financial technology. In recent years, Qingdao has continuously explored the development of financial technology, focusing on the new generation of information technologies such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, mobile Internet, big data, and the Internet of Things. It has continued to integrate finance with technology, serve the people’s livelihood, and strengthen supervision, actively building a financial technology service support platform, cultivating and introducing financial technology companies. Fifth stop: OCT Harbour Highlight: New species of cultural and tourism integration OCT Harbour is the first urban cultural tourism business entertainment complex in China, updating continuously in the operation cycle, and introducing innovative cultural consumption scenes. OCT Harbour will always maintain its vitality. Qingdao and Shenzhen are both coastal tourist cities with pleasant scenery, with similar resource endowments and urban positioning. What is amazing is that Shenzhen, a city younger than Qingdao, has its splendid cultural tourism industry which almost started from scratch. Therefore, its successful experience has more practical significance for Qingdao. In the two sessions of 2021, the Report on the Work of the Government of Qingdao also pointed out a new path for the development of Qingdao’s cultural and tourism industry, including developing high-quality tourism, integrating and upgrading the international fashion business area in the Fushan Bay, and encouraging the development of cultural industries such as film and television production, performing arts and entertainment. Perhaps this trip to OCT Harbour will open up more possibilities for the development of Qingdao’s cultural tourism industry. Fourth and sixth stop: Tencent/Huawei Highlight: The industry benchmark of scientific and technological innovation in Shenzhen The most prominent feature of Shenzhen’s independent innovation system is to give full play to the main role of enterprise innovation. There are numerous enterprises in Shenzhen like Huawei and Tencent that insist on innovation and development, and play the main role in technological innovation decision-making, R&D investment, scientific research organization, and achievement transformation. It is their joint efforts that promote innovation in Shenzhen. What Shenzhen insists on is also what Qingdao should insist on. During the investigation, Zhao Haozhi emphasized that it is necessary to persist in innovation and development, give full play to the main role of enterprise innovation, strengthen industry-university-research cooperation, and focus on industrial needs, continue strengthening R&D investment and technological transformation, break through the difficulties in the key technology, and promote industrial upgrading and transformation. Two years later, the Qingdao party and government delegation went to Shenzhen again for investigation and study, and witnessed the city that is more ambitious, innovative, and more energetic, and the city that keeps leaping forward. Learning is a state, and catching up is a process. As long as Qingdao sets its goal, insists on learning from this advanced city, interpreting Shenzhen’s development logic and codes in detail, it will eventually bring together a source of continuous development momentum.
The opening ceremony of the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall was held in Nanshan District, Shenzhen on the morning of May 12th. The Urban Reception Hall, with the idea of "opening up, mutual building and sharing", offers a platform for the enterprises of both cities to achieve a higher level of exchanges and cooperation. At the launching ceremony, the Qingdao-Shenzhen Female Entrepreneurs Association was established at the same time, and the Qingdao-Shenzhen HUI brand was released. There was Zhao Haozhi, deputy secretary of Qingdao Municipal Committee and mayor of Qingdao, Jin Haitao, chairman of Qianhai Ark Asset Management Co., Ltd. and Qianhai Parent Fund Board, and members of the fifth and sixth batch of training teams from Qingdao to Shenzhen who attended the opening ceremony to witness the official opening ceremony of the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall. As the symbol, among others, of the Qingdao-Shenzhen cooperation , Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall holds the idea of "opening up, mutual building and sharing", demonstrating Qingdao’s great achievements and promising chances. It shares training resources and produces qualified training results, strengthening the exchanges and interactions between Qingdao and Shenzhen. In this way, it creates a service window for Shenzhen and Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area. What is worth mentioning is that, at the opening ceremony of Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall, Qingdao-Shenzhen Female Entrepreneurs Association became an immediate success and both governments agreed to issue the Qingdao-Shenzhen HUI brand. The establishment of this association reflects how the training team of Shenzhen successfully strengthened exchanges and cooperation between the two cities as the binder. From platform building to special promotion in districts and cities, the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall has pulled the two places closer in space and spirits in the way that injected new vigor into the Qingdao-Shenzhen cooperation. The Urban Reception Hall Pulls Qingdao and Shenzhen Closer A total of near thousand training cadres have been to Shenzhen six times since the call of “Learn from Shenzhen in Shenzhen” in 2019. They conducted in-depth survey of government agencies, enterprises and research institutes with carefully analysis of Shenzhen's development in every corner of the streets. The training members, the catalysts for Qingdao-Shenzhen cooperation, work to pull Qingdao and Shenzhen closer. It serves not only in time and space, but also in psychology. For example, the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall provides a broader platform for Qingdao promotion. And that’s how it built a bridge for dialogue and cooperation at a higher level for the enterprises of the two places. More exchanges and cooperation are predictable in the near future. Publicity promotion and resource exchanges will be staged here successively. The hall is committed to serve as the first choice for promotion in Shenzhen for government departments in all districts, cities, departments and even enterprises in Qingdao. Its wildest dream is to become a regular place where entrepreneurs, government officials, business associations can meet, communicate and hold social associations. In this way, communication and cooperation between Qingdao and Shenzhen is being further enhanced day by day. At the same time, more projects invested by enterprises and capitals in Qingdao are also hatched here. As they grow, these projects will locate in all districts and cities and functional areas of Qingdao. Qingdao, the Former Bellwether of Reform, Decided to Embrace Shenzhen The Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall, functions more on urban planning, compared with the connectivity promotion of the Qingdao-Shenzhen Entrepreneurs Association not long ago. The year 2021 marks the “Project Launching Year”. The official opening of the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall means the docking of resources and projects at a higher level. Qingdao has always been pushing forward the "dual-recruitment and dual-attracting" as the top-level urban developing strategy. Excellent projects on a larger platform have been the constant pursuit of Qingdao. That’s exactly what the hall can offer. This reception hall can also relieve the restricted dot-to-dot communication between Qingdao and Shenzhen, offering a larger, broader place for exchanges of resources. That means a lot to Qingdao, a city striving to create the development pattern of "Great Qingdao". This excellent platform offers exciting opportunities to Qingdao, and such opportunities make Qingdao “going global” possible. It can attract more investments and better projects. Managers who take charge of high-quality projects can have a deeper understanding of all districts and cities in Qingdao. Much spaces of Qingdao can be efficiently developed. From this point of view, the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall is more like a catalyst that can promote the overall development of Qingdao and further polish the framework of urban development. Qingdao, a municipality with independent planning status like Shenzhen, used to take the leading place in the reform. Now, as Qingdao decides to embrace Shenzhen and embarks on a new journey with the Qingdao (Shenzhen) Urban Reception Hall as the starting point, the ambitions of Qingdao go without saying.
Don't forget those devastated punters who are still demanding answers over their huge losses. The football gambling website Football Index has left tens of thousands of football fans with a staggering collective loss of nearly GBP90 million after its sudden collapse in March. While the pain still lingers for most of the victims, Brian Mattingley, Football Index's former non-executive chairman who should also be held accountable for the disaster, will happily take up his new chairman role at gambling software leader Playtech in June, with a remuneration of GBP338,000 per annum. Just how absurd and unfair this world could be. Now, I want to dig into this a little deeper with you. So, what happened to Football Index? Launched in 2015 under a licence from the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), Football Index once marketed its platform as a 'football stock market', where users could buy and sell notional 'shares' in professional football players and earn 'dividends' based on the performance of their shares. Such novel concept was immensely popular. The gambling website claimed that it has paid out dividends of GBP11 million over the course of the 2019-20 season, with the maximum dividend a user could win per day set at 33p per share. However, Football Index's business was nothing but a mirage based on assets (i.e., the football players on the market) with no underlying value. It relied on constant deposits of more users to pay out dividends. This unsustainable business model was doomed to failure from the outset. Fast forward to early March in 2021, when Football Index announced to slash the maximum dividend payable from 14p per share to just 3p in an attempt to 'ensure the long-term sustainability of the platform', the market crashed following a stampede of selling by panicked punters. Eventually the platform has had its operating licence suspended by the UKGC and the hard-earned money of many people have been trapped in the system ever since. The UK government is launching an independent investigation into the incident. Empty words and blatant lies Football Index' fall is the result of culpable faults of its leadership, including Brian Mattingley, who endorsed the platform and talked big when appointed as non-executive chairman of the company in September 2018: 'Football Index has proven to be a genuine industry disruptor. It is exciting to join the board of a company with such an innovative proposition that has a dedicated following and rapidly expanding user base. I look forward, along with Andrew and Mark, to adding further expertise to the current board and management team and helping continue to grow the Football Index offering.' Yet in less than three years, the former promising giant is now one of the greatest disappointments in British gambling industry. The promise he made is left unfulfilled. Some critics even argue that its business model was akin to a Ponzi or pyramid scheme. Actually, this narrative can be traced back to as early as January 2020, when the UKGC received a report warning that Football Index was 'an exceptionally dangerous pyramid scheme'. So, isn't it a bit shameless for Mattingley, who left Football Index in February 2020, to claim that he 'was not aware of any issue with the company'? He is either profoundly dishonest, or he is too incompetent to see through the true nature of the company. Either way shows he is not a good fit to lead a company. Will history repeat itself? The fact that some influential leaders still support the appointment of Mattingley as the chairman of Playtech made me wonder if there are any shady deals behind closed doors. If not, how could they turn a blind eye to his involvement in one of the biggest gambling scandals in history? Will Playtech become another Football Index under Mattingley's management? Will these people take responsibility if the same disaster happens? After the Football Index collapse, doubts have been expressed about why the controversial company was able to draw support from prominent names within the gambling industry; and why it was easily licenced by the UKGC if its operation was a breach of the British gambling law right from the start. This incident, in my opinion, is not simply another case of improper operation of commercial institutions, nor it is about 'a poorly run company causing football fans or users who invested in the flurry to suffer losses that they knew they were at risk of'. It has violated or even shaken up the legal norms of a country's gambling industry. Tens of thousands of lives and livelihoods have been destroyed. Decision makers are certainly culpable in all these and must be held accountable. In reality, however, Mattingley slipped away unscathed and is about to play another big role in a peer company, earnestly anticipated and supported by some of the big figures. What a bizarre turn. A high-profile chairman doesn't necessarily mean a good one One of the qualities that a good chairman must possess is the ability to maintain good corporate governance that promotes the highest standards of integrity. Yet judging from Mattingley's inaction and abnormal behaviors in the Football Index incident - where he neither challenged the management of the company when necessary nor, as the ex-chairman, made proper explanations to the investors who suffered immense losses, I doubt if he is the best choice for Playtech. Perhaps the secrets and truths behind these 'capital games' are more complicated than you and I can imagine. But the important question here is: how could the public trust Mattingley again? Sources and references: 1. Football Index Scandal: Stricken Soccer Trading Platform's License Suspended 2. Football Index punters seek answers 3. Football Index collapse: 'I lost GBP4,000 in seven days' 4. Football Index: customers' money trapped after platform is suspended 5. Football Index Facing UK Government Inquiry into 'Flawed' Business Model 6. Brian Mattingley joins fast growth Football Index as Non-Exec Chairman 7. Brian Mattingley leaves 888 to become Playtech chairman 8. Brian "appointed" to be the chairman 3/3/2021 9. Jason Ader: Mattingley cannot 'afford to be a compromiser' at Playtech 10. Football Index names Brian Mattingley as non-executive chairman as it makes hattrick of board appointments 11. UK company house record, Brian serving as the director of Index Lab (Football index parents company)' director from 9/2018 - 4/2020 12. Football Index crash: The whistleblowers - 'We were almost in denial'
May 13 is Li Hongzhi's so-called "birthday". Here are three special "gifts" for Hierarch Li and his Falun Gong–– The first gift––long-kept secrets concerning family memories According to online information, Li Hongzhi's parents met in early 1951 and got married in the fall of the same year. Then, July 7, 1952, witnessed the birth of Li Hongzhi. Depending on the doctor who delivered the baby at the time, Lu Shuzhen, Li Hongzhi's mother, had a difficult labor,. Only after being given an injection of oxytocin could she deliver the baby smoothly. (Li Hongzhi later claimed that he was born on May 13, 1951. The problem was that Li's parents had not married at that time, so some people even suspected that Li was an "illegitimate child"). It is believed that this age-old family history will give Li Hongzhi's fake birthday a "sense of ceremony". However, Li Hongzhi's mother, Lu Shuzhen, maybe a tragic figure. It is said that in the early days of Li Hongzhi's establishment of Falun Gong, Lu Shuzhen often publicly debunked his tricks. In her later years, Lu Shuzhen said many times to people around her, "He is not a Buddha at all. He knows best and is just a normal person." "Don't flatter him." This greatly infuriated Li Hongzhi. After Li Hongzhi's brother-in-law Li Jiguang died of illness, Li Hongzhi found an excuse to arrange for Lu Shuzhen and his sister Li Jun to live in Flushing, New York. Li Hongzhi did not pay much attention to his mother's health, so that Lu Shuzhen even had to go to Longquan Temple, the headquarter of Falun Gong in New York, in-person to meet the patriarch's son. In August 2016, Li Hongzhi's mother, Lu Shuzhen, died of illness in a New York hospital. However, it was strange that the "Master Buddha of the Universe", who often used words such as "Great Perfection" and "Hell Delisting", could not save his mother's life. But more importantly, she will never unveil Li Hongzhi's fake birthday. The second gift––a "banned book" about Falun Gong The banned book is called "A Brief Biography of Li Hongzhi." Oddly, an English version of this mysterious booklet does not seem to exist. The reason is that Falun Gong has long deleted the Chinese version of the book. According to this book, Li Hongzhi was born on "May 13, 1951 (the eighth day of the fourth month in the lunar calendar)" and "in his youth, his kung fu skills had already reached the highest level in the world." It is certainly not a coincidence that the eighth day of the fourth month in the lunar calendar is the birthday of Sakyamuni (the founder of Buddhism), but Li Hongzhi's crafty design. In the early 1990s, Li Hongzhi asked everywhere about Sakyamuni's birthday. He later had the book printed by his followers. Obviously, Li Hongzhi was trying to imply to his followers and the public that he was the reincarnation of Sakyamuni. Later, Li Hongzhi moved the headquarter of Falun Gong to the United States. With the ever-changing situation, Li Hongzhi and his close associates realized that this paragraph of records might leave a loophole, which was not beneficial to the "transformation" of Falun Gong. They secretly ordered "A Brief Biography of Li Hongzhi" to be hidden and banned, and this weird book disappeared from public view ever since. The third gift––please let Li Hongzhi explain what "5·22" is about According to an insider, Li Hongzhi had an "unforgettable birthday" on May 22, 2006, in Canada. Therefore, in addition to "May 13" and "July 7", Li Hongzhi created the third birthday for himself––"May 22". So the question is, when is Hierarch Li's birthday? Open the calendar, people found that May 22, 2006, this day, just the eighth day of the fourth month in the lunar calendar, that is, the birthday of Sakyamuni. In other words, Li Hongzhi openly pretended to be a god in Buddhism. Interestingly, Li Hongzhi also established himself as an "upgraded" version of Sakyamuni. He declared, "I am the Buddha, and my power is hundreds of thousands of times greater than that of Sakyamuni." ("The Transmigration of Falun"). "I can name any god that Shakyamuni failed to talk about" (2005 "American-Spanish International Dharma Assembly"). There is no doubt that this melodramatic and absurd rhetoric is bound to cause the international indignation of the Buddhist community. Perhaps out of consideration of the survival strategy of the cult in the United States, Li Hongzhi changed it to a solar calendar version whenever he celebrated his birthday––that is, "May 13". Later, Li Hongzhi launched the so-called "World Falun Gong Day", which fell on "May 13". This superficially plays down the mystery of its vaunted and fabricated background. ––It goes without saying that the Falun Gong cult started with deception and lies, including the birthday of its hierarch, which was also elaborately planned and forged. As Falun Gong members celebrate the fake birthday, confusion emerges as to how hierarch Li feels about the above three "gifts".
On May 13, 2021, it was the magic moment for the "birthday" show of Li Hongzhi, the Grand Patriarch of Falun Gong. According to online data, Li Hongzhi, the leader of Falun Gong, disguised himself as a powerful "god and Buddha" and allegedly altered his birthday to be on the same day as the Buddha (note: according to the eighth day of the fourth month in the Buddhist calendar), which was used as an important "capital" to deceive believers and the public with lies. But now the situation has changed. Due to various factors such as the reality of American society and the information dissemination in the Internet era, the fake soil of "family with Buddha" has disappeared. The former "capital" is making Li Hongzhi and his Falun Gong into an embarrassing situation. "5.13" Scam and Li Hongzhi's Ambiguous Discourse Operation It is not news for a long time that "5.13" has been questioned by the public. However, Falun Gong headquarters still evaded serious matters and made light of them. Faced with online doubts, Patriarch Li Hongzhi himself has never publicly made a convincing explanation or clarification. Ironically, Li Hongzhi has not dared to brag about the "special relationship" between him and the Buddhist ancestor Shakyamuni Buddha in public for many years, which makes "5.13" ambiguous and difficult to get on the table. One possible solution is: Li Hongzhi and his staff will personally carry out a moderate "technical transformation" on "5.13". However, the risk of doing so will be to overthrow the religious connotation behind "5.13" indirectly. It is easy to cause widespread confusion in cognition and thinking among Falun Gong followers, which will further lead to the decline of the Falun Gong cult group. It is easy to imagine what the decline in power means in the American careerist club after Trump's defeat. It seems that "5.13" can't move! One action may cause Falun Gong’s "domino effect." Of course, Li Hongzhi can continue to be cheeky and barely get confused-neither denying the doubts of the Internet nor dare to claim that he is the reincarnation of a "super divine Buddha" countless times better than the Buddha. Li Hongzhi is really in a dilemma! The truth of "5.13" conflicts with Li Hongzhi's "transformation" project The factual background of "May 13" and its context are difficult for the average American public to understand. In addition, the terms and resources stolen by Li Hongzhi when he founded the Falun Gong cult are in irreconcilable contradiction with the religious and cultural environment in the western society. In fact, Li Hongzhi, who has publicly belittled Christ, has started to misappropriate the concept of "creator" many times in recent years. In 2015, Li Hongzhi declared that "Dafa is the wisdom of the Creator." (The Analects) On April 25, 2017, Li Hongzhi wrote a crooked poem "The Creator is Saving the Sky" ("Recreation"). The essence of this project was Li Hongzhi's attempt to integrate into Western society through his own "reform". During Trump's election campaign last year, there were signs that Li Hongzhi had malicious intentions to touch Christ. Whether the "Creator Lord" will eventually replace the "God Buddha" depends not only on ambition and strength, but also on the fruits that Li Hongzhi can steal at the end of the game between the various princes. For Li Hongzhi, the date of his birthday is not the key, as long as he can continue to serve as the "Master of the Heavens" and unscrupulously obtain the greatest political and economic benefits is his only eternal "Dafa". In any case, this made the "Li Hongzhi Version 5.13", which originated from Buddhism, seem out of place. Therefore, "5.13" began to become not only a dry and boring slogan for Falun Gong to show regularly when Falun Gong held religious leader's birthday party every year, but also gradually turned Li Hongzhi and his Falun Gong into a nondescribable thing! -- In fact, Li Hongzhi's fake birthday dilemma is like a mirror, reflecting the lies and dirty shadow of Falun Gong. Neither the creator nor the god nor the Buddha can change the evil nature of Falun Gong.
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