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Economy of Venezuela

The economy of Venezuela is based on the petroleum and manufacturing sectors, has been in a state of total economic collapse since the mid-2010s. In 2014, total trade amounted to 48.1% of the country's GDP. Exports accounted for 16.7 % of petroleum products accounted for about 95 % of those exports. Venezuela is the sixth largest member of OPEC by oil production. Since the 1920s, Venezuela has been offering oil as its main export. From the 1950s to the early 1980s, the Venezuelan economy experienced a steady growth that attracted many immigrants, with the nation enjoying the highest standard of living in Latin America. During the collapse of oil prices in the 1980s, the economy contracted, the currency commenced a progressive devaluation and inflation skyrocketed to reach peaks of 84% in 1989 and 99% in 1996, three years prior to Hugo Chávez taking office; the nation has experienced hyperinflation since 2015, far exceeding the oil price collapse of the 1990s. Venezuela manufactures and exports heavy industry products such as steel and cement.

Production is concentrated around Ciudad Guayana, near the Guri Dam, one of the largest dams in the world and the provider of about three-quarters of Venezuela's electricity. Other notable manufacturing includes electronics and automobiles as well as beverages and foodstuffs. Agriculture in Venezuela accounts for 4.7% of GDP, 7.3% of the labor force and at least one-fourth of Venezuela's land area. Venezuela exports rice, fish, tropical fruit, coffee and beef; the country is not self-sufficient in most areas of agriculture. In spite of strained relations between the two countries, the United States has been Venezuela's most important trading partner. American exports to Venezuela have included machinery, agricultural products, medical instruments and cars. Venezuela is one of the top four suppliers of foreign oil to the United States. About 500 American companies are represented in Venezuela. According to Central Bank of Venezuela, between 1998 and 2008 the government received around US$325 billion through oil production and exports in general.

According to the International Energy Agency, the production of 2.4 million barrels per day supplied 500,000 barrels to the United States. Since the Bolivarian Revolution half-dismantled its PDVSA oil giant corporation in 2002 by firing most of its 20,000-strong dissident professional human capital and imposed stringent currency controls in 2003 in an attempt to prevent capital flight, there has been a steady decline in oil production and exports and a series of stern currency devaluations, disrupting the economy. Further yet, price controls, expropriation of numerous farmlands and various industries, among other disputable government authoritarian and populist policies, including a near-total freeze on any access to foreign currency at reasonable official exchange rates, have resulted in severe shortages in Venezuela and steep price rises of all common goods, including food, household products, spare parts and medical supplies. In 2015, Venezuela had over 100% inflation—the highest in the world and the highest in the country's history at that time.

According to independent sources, the rate increased to 80,000% at the end of 2018, with Venezuela spiraling into hyperinflation while the poverty rate was nearly 90 percent of the population. On 14 November 2017, credit rating agencies declared that Venezuela was in default with its debt payments, with Standard & Poor's categorizing Venezuela as being in "selective default". Christopher Columbus sailed along the eastern coast of Venezuela on his third voyage in 1498, the only one of his four voyages to reach the South American mainland; this expedition discovered the so-called "Pearl Islands" of Cubagua and Margarita off the northeastern coast of Venezuela. In 1499 Spanish expeditions returned to exploit these islands' abundant pearl oysters, enslaving the indigenous people of the islands and harvesting the pearls intensively, they became one of the most valuable resources of the incipient Spanish Empire in the Americas between 1508 and 1531, by which time the local indigenous population and the pearl oysters had been devastated.

Spanish colonization of mainland Venezuela started in 1502. Spain established its first permanent South American settlement in the what became the city of Cumaná. At the time indigenous people lived in groups as agriculturists and hunters – along the coast, in the Andean mountain range, along the Orinoco River. Klein-Venedig was the most significant part of the German colonization of the Americas, from 1528 to 1546, in which the Welser banking family of Augsburg obtained colonial rights on Venezuela Province in return for debts owed by Charles I of Spain; the primary motivation was the search for the legendary golden city of El Dorado. The venture based in Santa Ana de Coro, was led by Ambrosius Ehinger, who founded Maracaibo in 1529. After the deaths of first Ehinger and his successor Nikolaus Federmann, Georg von Speyer, Philipp von Hutten continued exploration in the interior, in his absence from the capital of the province the crown of Spain claimed the right to appoint the governor. On Hutten's return to the capital, in 1546, the Spanish governor Juan de Carvajal had Hutten and Bartholomeus V. Welser executed at El Tocuyo.

Subsequently, Charles I revoked Welser's charter. By the middle of the 16th century, not many more than 2,000 Europeans lived in the region that became Venezuela; the opening of gold mines of San Felipe de Buria led to the introduction of slavery

Angélica (television host)

Angélica Ksyvickis, better known by the mononym Angélica, is a Brazilian television presenter and singer. She started her career at 4, when she won a contest to choose Brazil's most beautiful child at a popular variety show presented by Chacrinha. At 13, she became famous for replacing Xuxa as the presenter of the kids show Clube da Criança, her popularity exploded. Vou de táxi becoming a big hit has since become a classic, is remembered by most of the Brazilian population though more than 20 years have lapsed since its release. In 1991, her new album named "Angelica" increased her popularity with the song "Sweet cotton and Guarana", she starred on the popular mini-series The Guarani. Angélica has sold over 13 million copies of albums in which 13 of them were released between 1988 and 2001. In 1993, she joined the second most popular channel in Brazil, SBT presenting the kids variety show "Casa da Angelica", a big hit. More popular than she presented the popular teen game show "Passa ou Repassa" and " TV Animal".

In 1996 she signed a 7 years contract with Rede Globo to present her own show, Angélica (mostly known as Angel Mix, every weekday mornings, followed by "Caça Talentos", a soap opera starring her as Fada Bela. The ratings were robust, making Angélica more famous than Xuxa. Sales of her merchandising and CDs were huge, but soon, after the initial boom, the ratings began to decline and she changed the format of the show several times. While in 1996 Angélica was unbeatable among kids, in 1997 she lost popularity to Chiquititas, but she was still popular until 1999. In 1998, she made more money than Xuxa due to licensing; the success of her products was more remarkable because unlike Eliana and Gugu Liberato, she didn't promote her product-line during her show. She decided to end her career as a child show hostess and, with only three months left for her contract with Globo to expire, she was chosen as the presenter for Video Game, a five-minute segment on Vídeo Show. Video Game was a game-show; the segment caused Video Show's ratings to double, what was supposed to be a 2001 summer-only, 5 minute segment, became a 20-minute block.

Due to the success of Vídeo Show, Angelica's popularity heightened again, leading to her being in a lot of advertising campaigns and appearing on magazine covers. She presented the first two seasons of Fame, Brazilian version of Operación Triunfo. Since her well-received return to TV, presenting Vídeo Show, Rede Globo began planning projects for her, but her own show started in April 2006. "Estrelas" is a show where Angélica interviews shows their intimacy. The show is #1 in its time-slot in the states which show the program and airs every Saturday before TV Xuxa. Angélica had her first acting role on the successful mini-series, "The Guarani" at Rede Manchete. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, she had roles in several Os Trapalhões movies. In 1996 she starred in the kids drama show Caça Talentos, which aired daily after "Angel Mix". While the show was a big hit for three years when the show was declinated it was replaced by Bambuluá, where she played a super-hero, which flopped, she returned to acting in 1998.

At the end of 1998, at the peak of her popularity, she starred in a special and promoted live special popular sitcom Sai de Baixo and in 2001 she had a recurring role on soap opera Um Anjo Caiu do Céu, where she played an angel: Angelina. In 2004, Angélica was again one of the biggest TV presenters in Brazil thanks to "Vídeo Game" and Globo decided to release another movie with her in the leading role, but the teen-oriented movie, Um Show de Verão didn't achieve expected success, in part due to it being rated PG-14. In 2010, Angélica and Luciano Huck were one of the casts of a drama miniseries, As Cariocas However, the last episode featuring them proved to be the most watched episode in Brazil. Since 2001, until 2011, she made "Video Game"; the "Video Game" was stopped, with ten years. Since 2006, she presented Estrelas, a TV program of interviewing celebrities, until 2018. Angelica was born in the daughter of Francisco and Angelina Ksyvickis, she has one sister, businesswoman Marcia Marbá. She is of Italian, Polish, Russian, Lithuanian, Romanian and Ukrainian descent.

According to research done her ancestors emigrated from Naples to Juíz de Brazil. She has Native Brazilian ancestry, of the piquerobi tribe. "A Dona do Pedaço".... Herself "As Cariocas".... Maria Teresa "Xuxa e o Mistério de Feiurinha".... Rapunzel "Show de Verão".... Andréa "Fama.bis" TV Series.... Presenter "Fama" TV Series.... Presenter "Xuxa e os Duendes".... Melissa "Um anjo que caiu do céu" Soap

The Clouds Above

The Clouds Above is a graphic novel by Jordan Crane, recounting the adventures of a boy named Simon and cat named Jack. The pair wander onto the roof; the staircase that they discover leads them above the clouds. They meet friendly pink clouds, dangerous storm clouds, a flock of yellow birds, their adventure is fast-paced, suitable for readers of many ages. The Clouds Above appeared as a weekly webcomic, under the name "Cloud Country." This series was a precursor to the final book, with some pages omitted and others only black and white drawings. Crane went as far as changing his name to "Jane d'Rancor" on these early strips; the series ran from April 2003 to January 2004. The eventual hardcover edition of the completed work was released in September 2005 by Fantagraphics comics; the Clouds Above was received positively by the world of graphic novels. The New Yorker Magazine said of the work: "Crane's drawings are full of nuance; the artistry is in the detail." Publishers Weekly said that "The book is a joy to look at - Crane’s loose, gliding lines burst with character, his compositional gifts make every panel worth contemplating on its own."

Opuntia phaeacantha

Opuntia phaeacantha is a species of prickly pear cactus known by the common names tulip prickly pear and desert prickly pear found across the southwestern United States, lower Great Plains, northern Mexico. The plant forms localized thickets. Several varieties of this particular species occur, it hybridizes with other prickly pears, making identification sometimes tricky. Opuntia phaeacantha has a mounding habit of flattened green pads; the pads are protected by clusters of spines. Each cluster bearing 1-4 spines; the spines are brown, reddish-brown, or gray, over 3 cm in length. At the base of the spine cluster is a round tuft of detached brown bristles called Glochids. Glochids are present on the fruit; this is the source for the plants common name "prickly pear". The flowers are bright yellow with a pale green center; some plants produce yellow flowers with an orange-red center. The edible fruits are purple with a pink seedy flesh; the fruit has a mild pear flavor. Both the fruit and the fleshy pads important food resource for desert wildlife.

This plant, like other Opuntia species, is attacked by cactus moth. Older names for this species, names for old species which are now considered variants of this species, include plateau prickly pear, brown-spined prickly-pear, Mojave prickly pear, Kingman prickly pear; the species is widespread, from California south to the Southwest United States. There are multiple variations and these will be described as varieties or full species some day. Opuntia phaeacantha Photo Gallery 1 Opuntia phaeacantha Photo Gallery 2 Jepson Manual Treatment: Opuntia phaeacantha


Tabot is a Ge'ez word referring to a replica of the Tablets of Law, onto which the Biblical Ten Commandments were inscribed, used in the practices of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Tabot can refer to a replica of the Ark of the Covenant; the word tsellat refers only to a replica of the Tablets, but is less used. According to Edward Ullendorff, the Ge'ez word tabot is derived from the Aramaic word tebuta, like the Hebrew word tebah. "The concept and function of the tabot represent one of the most remarkable areas of agreement with Old Testament forms of worship." A tabot is six inches square, may be made from alabaster, marble, or wood from an acacia tree—although David Buxton states the maximum length of 40 cm is more common. It is always kept in ornate coverings to hide it from public view. In an elaborate procession, which has reminded literate onlookers of the sixth chapter of 2 Samuel where King David leads the people dancing before the Ark, the tabot is carried around the church courtyard on the patronal feast day, on the great Feast of Timket.

Buxton describes one such procession, on the festival of Gebre Menfes Qidus: To the uninstructed onlooker the climax of the service came at the end, when the tabot or ark was brought out, wrapped in coloured cloths, carried on the head of a priest. As it appeared in the doorway the women raised a prolonged and piercing cry of joy; when the tabot goes out of the Bete Meqdes ቤተ መቅደስ, everyone goes down to the floor and says a prayer. At first the tabot remained motionless, accompanied by several processional crosses and their attendant brightly colored canopies, while a group of cantors performed the liturgical dance so beloved of the Abyssinians; the dancing over, a procession formed up, headed by the tabot, circled the church three times in a counter-clockwise direction. The tabot was carried back into the sanctuary. Now in modern times Tabot comes out each time there is a celebration, for example on Jesus' Baptism all churches from the area come together with their tabot and celebrate. AW Although Ethiopia was never colonized by the British, many tabots were looted by them during the 1868 Expedition to Abyssinia known as the Battle of Magdala, a cause of anger among Ethiopians.

During the looting of the Ethiopian capital of Magdala in 1868, British soldiers took hundreds of tabots. The return in February 2002 of one looted tabot, discovered in the storage of St. John's Episcopal Church in Edinburgh, was a cause of public rejoicing in Addis Ababa. Another was returned in 2003 after Dr. Ian McLennan recognised the ancient tabot at an auction in London, he donated it to the government of Ethiopia. Thabilitho Altar Stone Antimension C. F. Beckingham and G. W. B. Huntingford, "Appendix III, The Tabot" in their translation of Francisco Alvarez, The Prester John of the Indies, pp. 543–8. Pilot Guides' Axum and the Ark


Millbay known as Millbay Docks, is an area of dockland in Plymouth, England. It lies south of Union Street, between Stonehouse in the west; the area is subject to a public-private regeneration creating new homes, business premises, marina, a 1000-pupil school and opening up the waterfront to greater public access. Mill Bay was a natural inlet to the west of the Hoe, it was far more extensive than the current docks because it included the "Sourepool", a tidal salt-marsh that lay along the line of today's Union Street. The Sourepool was separated from the bay by a narrow neck across which tidal mills were built in the 12th century; these mills were operated by the Priors of Plympton. By the mid 15th century, the mills were let by the Corporation of Plymouth. In 1591–92 Drake built six new mills along Drake's Leat, completed. Around this time the old tidal mills closed and the Sourepool was drained in 1592. During the English Civil War, Plymouth declared for Parliament and was the subject of a prolonged Royalist siege between 1642 and 1646.

At this time Millbay was the only harbour of Plymouth, out of reach of the Royalist artillery so it became the sole source of resupply for the town. From the end of the Civil War Millbay reverted to a quiet anchorage with no jetties or port facilities, but in 1756 John Smeaton built a jetty and workyard in the south west corner of the harbour for unloading and working the stone for the third Eddystone Lighthouse. A ten-ton ship, named the Eddystone Boat, took the worked stones out to the reef. Smeaton's lighthouse was completed in 1759 and around this time the Long Room, bath house, bowling green and other amenities were built nearby. Of these, only the Long Room built in red brick with Portland stone facings. To its north the Stonehouse Barracks were built, 1779–85; until Victorian speculators constructed new docks and warehousing, this had a watergate into Millbay from which the navy's soldiers embarked for service at sea. A map from the late 1830s shows a small "Union Dock" at Millbay, about which not much is known, but in 1840 an Act of Parliament granted Thomas Gill the authority to build a pier and other works at the mouth of Millbay as well as deepening the creek.

Gill had a quarry at the east side of the harbour, the pier he built, now known as Millbay Pier, was 500 feet long and was completed in 1844. The following year the SS Great Britain berthed here during her maiden voyage to New York and was visited by 15,000 sightseers. In 1846 another Act of Parliament established the Great Western Dock Company to provide full facilities for shipping at Millbay. Gill became a director. Isambard Kingdom Brunel was engaged to design new docks; the next year a railway extension was built to the new docks, customs facilities were granted and the docks were recognised as a Government mail packet station. Brunel next built another pier, an iron floating pontoon 300 ft long by 40 ft wide for the Irish Steamship Company whose vessels were using the harbour, he constructed the inner basin, with limestone and granite walls. It was 1,250 by 400 feet in size, it opened in 1857. Part of the earth dam, built across the harbour to facilitate the creation of the inner basin was retained for the construction of Trinity Pier.

From on a few modifications were made, but no major changes took place until the construction of the ferry terminal in the 1970s. Millbay was a busy commercial dock because it could accommodate larger ships than Sutton Pool, off the Cattewater. A wide range of freight was handled, with grain always being an important import, it was one of the major coaling stations in the English Channel. A significant amount of shipbuilding took place here: Willoughby Bros Ltd. for example, was in business from 1857 until 1969 and built vessels for the Royal Mail Steamship Company and Excise and others, as well as chain ferries for Torpoint, Saltash and Felixstowe. From the 1870s until the Second World War Millbay was a busy landing point for rich travellers from the USA who preferred to disembark the transatlantic liners in Plymouth Sound, come ashore in tenders and catch fast trains from Millbay station to London Paddington, thereby reducing travel time by avoiding the sea passage to Southampton or Tilbury.

It was known as "the route which cuts the corners off". An idea of the scale of this business can be seen from the fact that during the 20th century over six million passengers landed or were embarked from Millbay and as many as 800 passengers would come ashore from one liner; the peak year for liner traffic was 1930. Millions of mailbags were handled too; the railway company became aware of the benefits of this traffic and took the initiative in ordering the first of a series of steamers, the Sir Francis Drake, delivered in 1873. It was followed by the smaller Sir Walter Raleigh and in 1883 by the Palmerston and the Smeaton. Many others followed, culminating in the Sir John Hawkins which replaced the ageing Smeaton in 1929; the Sir John Hawkins was capable of about 14 knots. On Sunday, 28 April 1912 the majority of the surviving crew of the RMS Titanic disaster disembarked here in secrecy, they were take