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2-3 February 2013

by ceebs Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:47:30 PM EST

Your take on today's news media


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  • EUROPE - the public affairs of the European continent and the EU.
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EUROPE


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:54:27 PM EST
BBC News - April Casburn jailed for News of the World leak offer

The first person to be prosecuted as part of the investigation into payments by journalists to officials has been jailed for 15 months in prison.

Det Ch Insp April Casburn, 53, from Essex, was convicted last month of misconduct in public office.

She had called the News of the World, offering to sell information to the paper, after the inquiry into hacking by the tabloid reopened in 2010.

The sentencing judge called it "a corrupt attempt to make money".



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:02:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ex-NoW reporter blasts News Corp for role in jailing of detective | Media | guardian.co.uk

The former News of the World reporter whose evidence contributed to the jailing of a senior anti-terrorism police officer has launched a scathing attack on the paper's owner, News Corporation, for its role in the case.

Tim Wood is furious that News Corp, the ultimate owner of the now-defunct tabloid, handed over an email he had written, which Justice Fulford said was crucial to Detective Chief Inspector April Casburn's conviction and imprisonment for 15 months.

Wood was the journalist who took the call when Casburn phoned the News of the World early one Saturday morning on September 2010 to tip off the paper that Scotland Yard was launching a new phone-hacking investigation.

He told the Exaro News website that the decision by News Corp's management and standards committee to hand over the email about the details of his phone conversation with Casburn to the Met was a "betrayal" of one of the most basic principles of journalism, which is "always to protect the source" of a story.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:20:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Bulgarians react with dismay to British anti-immigration campaign | UK news | The Guardian

This week, a young woman known as Ralitsa Behar wrote a letter on behalf of her fellow Bulgarians. Barely a thousand words long, the missive has taken her country by storm, being reproduced in national newspapers, winding its way through the internet and igniting debate that even its recipient, Nigel Farage, may have found hard to imagine.

"Although I try and understand your immigration concerns, I must admit that I found your comments on Bulgaria untrue and somewhat insulting," said the British-educated graduate taking the UKIP leader to task about the "false information" he had peddled in defence of his views.

Far from being a land of "unskilled workers" bent on storming the shores of Britain when EU labour market restrictions are lifted next year, the former communist state also produced emigres who wanted nothing more than to pack their bags and return home



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:04:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Suspected suicide bombing kills two at US embassy in Turkey | World news | guardian.co.uk

A suspected suicide bomber detonated an explosive device at the entrance of the US embassy in Ankara, killing himself and one other person, officials said.

An Associated Press reporter saw a body in the street in front of an embassy side entrance. The bomb appeared to have exploded inside the security checkpoint at the entrance to the embassy.

The US ambassador, Francis Ricciardone, told reporters that a guard at the gate was killed and a Turkish citizen wounded.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:05:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Diary of a Benefit Scrounger: David 1, Goliath 0
Remember when we heard about PIP? That DLA would be abolished, despite nothing in the Tory manifesto? Remember how we sat, open mouthed at the disgusting proposals? "Bathing" reclassified as a wipe with a flannel FROM THE WAIST UP? Paraplegics "fully mobile" if they used their wheelchairs TOO WELL? The day we heard 500,000 people would lose out entirely? Half a million of the "most vulnerable" cut adrift?

Remember the enormous thrill as Spartacus Report blazed around the world, the report WE wrote, WE funded exposing the government as liars and cheats?

Well my friends, a few weeks ago, this stubborn intractable government finally admitted defeat. The fingers I have in various pies started singing an astonishing tune. The government were frightened. They no longer had the stomach for a fight with the very people the public see ( rightly or wrongly) as the "real disabled". The private Tory polling was atrocious, the public had been rallying to our cause for longer than the Tories were admitting. Backbenchers were getting twitchy, ministers weren't sure a daily diet of abandoned cancer patients and cruelly cut off Parkinson's grannies were a good idea in the run up to an election.


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:17:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France's Hollande to visit Mali on Saturday - Africa - Al Jazeera English

French President Francois Hollande, Foreign Minister Lauren Fabius and Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian will visit Mali on Saturday, Hollande's office has announced.

Development Minister Pascal Canin will also make the trip, which follows a three-week military intervention in the former colony in which French forces have recaptured large areas of northern Mali from al-Qaeda-linked rebel fighters.

France's Liberation newspaper quoted unnamed sources saying Hollande also planned to visit the fabled desert city of Timbuktu, which French and Malian forces seized back from the rebels who had held the northern part of the former French colony since last year.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:30:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - Mali conflict: Elated Timbuktu residents hail Hollande

But then the presidential convoy moved deeper into Timbuktu, swung up a sandy road towards the main square and suddenly, there they all were: A rapturous crowd of perhaps 3,000 people, dancing, drumming, singing, holding placards and craning their necks for a glimpse of the man they credit with liberating the ancient town from months of brutal occupation by Islamist militants.

"It's the best welcome - to our soldiers and to France," a grinning President Hollande told the BBC as he plunged into the throng in suit and tie, a diminutive figure almost swamped by locals, cameramen, and French and Malian security guards. "

The crowd was a raucous blaze of colours - the women delighted to be free of the black veils demanded by the militants, and now proudly wearing their finest dresses.

by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:14:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
French resume attacks on Mali insurgents | euronews, world news

French warplanes have bombed fresh targets in northern Mali in their efforts to rid the country of Islamist militants.

The so-called "major" air strikes were carried out overnight in the Tessalit area north of Kidal. Military commanders describe it as the last bastion of radicals who occupied the desert north for months before France's intervention.

30 French warplanes blast Islamist targets in Mali - Hindustan Times

Malian foreign minister Tieman Hubert Coulibaly said he hoped the French military operation in his country would continue.

"Faced with these hardened fighters whose arsenal must be destroyed, we hope that the mission will continue," he told France's Journal du Dimanche newspaper, adding that the "aerial dimension" of the campaign was particularly important.

by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:24:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - Spain ruling party faces inquiry over 'slush fund'

Spain's public prosecutor says there are grounds to investigate alleged secret payments made to leaders of the ruling Popular Party (PP), including Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy.

Prosecutor Eduardo Torres-Dulce said he may question Mr Rajoy and other PP officials about the alleged slush fund.

The conservative PP has denied the allegations and says Mr Rajoy will make a statement about them on Saturday.

The daily El Pais published photos said to be of suspect party ledgers.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:36:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - Stalingrad name to be revived for anniversaries

The Russian city once known as Stalingrad is to regain its old name during commemorations of the famous World War II battle on Saturday.

It has been officially known as Volgograd since 1961, when it was renamed to remove its association with Soviet dictator Josef Stalin.

Its old name is inseparable from the ferocious battle won by Soviet forces 70 years ago this week.

Volgograd council has restored the name for six days a year.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:37:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - Missing property tycoon found lost, ragged and scarred

A missing Irish property developer has been found wandering, lost and emaciated on a country road, eight months after he disappeared.

Kevin McGeever, 68, is recovering in hospital in Mullingar, County Westmeath.

He was found barefoot, ragged and with an abusive word carved into his head.

He was dishevelled with a long beard and very long fingernails and had lost a lot of weight. In the Irish boom years, he sold luxury homes in Dubai.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:43:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Austrian EU lawmaker investigated over elephant expenses | Reuters

An Austrian member of the European Parliament is under investigation over suspect expenses claims totalling 1.3 million euros, including one item listed as "elephant".

In a request to the European Parliament to waive Hans-Peter Martin's immunity, the Vienna prosecutor's office said it suspected the independent MEP of embezzling public funds and making money "illicitly for himself or a third party by fraudulent means".



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 03:24:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Huffington Post: ex-CIA station chief in Rome, Jeff Castelli, condemned by Court of Appeals to 7 years for role in Abu Omar kidnapping

An Italian appeals court on Friday sentenced a former CIA station chief to seven years in jail for the kidnap of an Egyptian Muslim cleric during the U.S. government's "war on terror" waged by former president George W. Bush.

The Milan court also handed down two six-year sentences to two American officials for the same crime, the first of so-called "extraordinary rendition" operations organised by the United States.

The cleric, an Egyptian imam known as Abu Omar, was snatched from a Milan street and flown to Egypt for interrogation, where he says he was tortured for seven months. He was resident in Italy at the time of the abduction.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 04:47:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Gay marriage: grassroots Conservatives urge David Cameron to delay bill | Society | guardian.co.uk

The Conservative grassroots rebellion over plans to equalise laws to allow gay and lesbian couples to marry has moved up a step with a group of party constituency chairmen and longstanding supporters taking their protest to Downing Street.

A letter signed by 22 current and former chairmen of local groups urges the prime minister to reconsider or at least delay the plans, which face a crucial vote this week.

With 303 Conservative MPs and more than twice that many parliamentary constituencies in the UK, the signatories officially represent a small proportion of the party grassroots party. But their intervention will be taken seriously with growing signs of unhappiness among Tory MPs and their supporters. Even MPs who support equal marriage laws report they are inundated with emails and letters objecting to the move and only a small handful are in support.

by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:22:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
As I wrote elsewhere, I think Cameron has been surprised by the depth of emotion being aroused here. He is discovering that that those who loathe the thought of  gay people, let alone gay marriage and who still secretly yearn for a return to Section 28 (gay hatred authorization) still constitute a significant percentage of the party membership.

Yes, the tories really are the bigots we paint them as.

It won't stop him, and the bill will pass in the Commons, but it's entirely possible it'll die on the Lords

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 11:04:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Interestingly enough, the opponents in France also pin their hopes on the upper house, the Senate, where the left's majority is only 6 votes; not that this will stop the bill from being passed.
by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 11:32:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 ECONOMY & FINANCE 


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:55:30 PM EST
BP tried to manipulate gas market, alleges trader | Business | The Guardian
BP faces new embarrassment in America with a court case brought by one of its former traders, who claims the company was trying to manipulate the natural gas liquids market. Drew Sickinger, who joined BP's Houston office in 2009, says the company "created a pretext" for disciplining him late last year and then unfairly dismissing him.


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:07:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
U.S. Senate approves postponement of debt ceiling deadline - Xinhua | English.news.cn

U.S. Senate on Thursday approved the postponement of the federal government's debt ceiling until May to keep the federal government in operation and give lawmakers more time to mull over how to rein in the government's mounting deficit.

The 64-34 vote in the Democratic-led Senate sent the bill to U. S. President Barack Obama to sign into law. The White House has said Obama would sign it.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:33:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Italy's banking association appoints new head amid MPS scandal - Xinhua | English.news.cn

The Italian Banking Association (ABI) on Thursday appointed Antonio Patuelli, chairman of the bank Cassa di Risparmio di Ravenna, as new chief to succeed Giuseppe Mussari, the former head of Monte dei Paschi di Siena (MPS) who resigned amid a financial scandal.

Patuelli, 61, is an agricultural entrepreneur, journalist and bank official born in central Italy's Bologna. He has a master degree in law and served a six-year-term in parliament until 1994.

"We believe in an economy subject to ethics and law. If an operation is permissible by law but is contrary to ethics, it should not be carried out," he was quoted as saying by local media as he gave his inaugural speech.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:34:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Beppe Grillo's Blog

Here, once more, we are talking about the affair relating to Monte dei Paschi di Siena. They are already doing everything to tone down the affair, to camouflage it, to hide it, to conceal it and finally to shelve it.
In these last few days of the election campaign, they will come up with the strangest news items to divert attention and so that the general public will not question things and so that people will not insist on getting to the truth.
It's up to us to stir the water to swamp the media (well at least on the web) with an avalanche of questions that it is our right to insist on getting answers to with immediate and relevant replies.
Without a doubt we would have found out more from Corradino Mineo on "RAI News 24". That's no longer possible: he's the PD's top candidate for Sicily. That's something that is really intelligent (because the man is doubtless very intelligent but it's also very relevant because he's one of the greatest Italian experts on the ins and outs of our banking system). We would have been able to learn more by reading enthusiastic financial editorials in "Il Corriere della Sera" written by Massimo Muchetti but that will no longer be possible because he's the PD's chief candidate for Milan. We would (perhaps) have been able to find out more from another 25 people, but they are all candidates. Thus they will all stay silent.
Is this why they have been put forward as candidates (?) And this is why in the mainstream press we are not reading anything or getting any news. It would be enough to ask the right questions.

the gvt has shelved the enquiry till after the elections this month...

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 09:49:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 WORLD 


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:56:45 PM EST
Israeli warplanes fly over Lebanon | World news | guardian.co.uk

Israeli warplanes flew over Lebanon again on Friday, two days after air strikes targeted a convoy of arms or a weapons research base inside Syrian territory.

Andrea Tenenti, a spokesman for the UN forces in Lebanon, Unifil, confirmed that Israeli forces had continued to violate Lebanese airspace, but said this was routine. "On Tuesday [ahead of the air strikes] there were a high number of violations, but since then it has not been unusual," he told the Guardian.

Under UN security council resolution 1701, passed following the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war, Israeli planes are forbidden from flying over Lebanon.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:05:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Pemex headquarters blast leaves at least 32 dead in Mexico City | World news | guardian.co.uk

Rescuers are searching for survivors and authorities have promised a thorough investigation after an office building blast killed 32 people and injured 121 at the headquarters of Mexico's state-owned oil company, Petróleos Mexicanos.

The cause of the basement explosion in an administrative building next to the 51-story Pemex tower in Mexico City remained a mystery, with the Mexican president, Enrique Peña Nieto, urging people not to speculate. Early signs pointed to an accident in an area that housed electrical and air-conditioning equipment, according to a government official.

Questions abound about a possible attack on Mexico's most important installation just as the government is talking about a controversial energy reform and opening up Pemex to outside investors.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:08:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Violence in Cairo as Egyptians rally - Middle East - Al Jazeera English

Thousands of opponents of President Mohamed Morsi have returned to the streets of Egypt, demanding his resignation in the wake of the deadliest violence since he came to power seven months ago.

Protesters braved Cairo rainfall on Friday to march to Tahrir Square and the presidential palace, chanting "Freedom!" and "Morsi is illegitimate!" Some tossed Molotov cocktails at the presidential palace, prompting security forces to respond with water cannon and tear gas.

Scores of protesters clashed with riot police several hundred metres from the square, witnesses said, and two were wounded by birdshot fired by police.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:28:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Egyptian police beat naked man as opposition demands Mursi trial | euronews, world news
A video showing a group of Egyptian riot police beating a naked man with batons has fired outrage in the country off the scale.
The last eight days have been the bloodiest since President Mohammed Mursi came to power with close to 60 people being killed following unrest in a number of cities.
Political instability and street protests threaten to make the most populous Arab state ungovernable.
The victim of the brutality, Hamada Saber, is said to be recovering from his injuries in a police hospital.
The president's office released a statement announcing an investigation into the beating.
by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:25:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Deadly explosion hits Pakistan worshippers - Central & South Asia - Al Jazeera English

At least 27 people have been killed and more than 40 others wounded after a suicide bomber detonated his explosives outside a mosque in northwest Pakistan, police say.

The explosion in Hangu town happened as worshippers were leaving the mosque after Friday prayers.

The bomber staged his attack at one of the mosque's exits leading to a bazaar, said Hangu police chief Mian Mohammad Saeed.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:29:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
UN aid reaches Syria rebel-held town - Middle East - Al Jazeera English

The United Nations refugee agency has reached the opposition-held northern Syrian town of Azaz for the first time, where it found an estimated 45,000 displaced people living in "appalling" conditions in makeshift camps.

"This is an area that the UN has not been able to physically reach ever since the beginning of the conflict," Yacoub El Hillo, director of the UNHCR's Middle East and North Africa Bureau, told reporters in Geneva on Friday.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:29:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Iconic New York City mayor Ed Koch dies - Americas - Al Jazeera English

Former Mayor Ed Koch, the combative, outspoken politician who rescued New York City from near-financial ruin during an 11-year run as the city's leader has died at the age of 88, his spokesperson has said.

Koch died of congestive heart failure at about 2am local time (07:00GMT) at New York-Presbyterian hospital following a year of repeated hospitalisations, George Arzt, his spokesman, said on Friday.

A witty and larger than life figure, Koch, who remained a frequent public presence up to his last days, had been suffering heart and other health problems



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:30:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Clinton says U.S. failing to explain policies to Muslims - Xinhua | English.news.cn

The outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that America has not been successful in explaining its policies to the Muslim world.

When questioned on why favoritism toward America in recent years has even been lower than the Bush administration, Clinton responded: "I take responsibility, along with our entire government and our Congress and perhaps our private sector."

Clinton made the remarks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington in her final address as secretary of state. She is expected to step down on Friday and be succeeded by Democratic Senator John Kerry.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:32:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - Hillary Clinton steps down as US secretary of state

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton leaves office today after four years as America's chief diplomat.

Mrs Clinton ends her term in office with a 70% approval rating.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:35:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"I take responsibility, along with our entire government and our Congress and perhaps our private sector."

lol

perhaps.... that's coy, disingenuous, or both.

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 03:30:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Perhaps reducing "favoritism" toward the US is a strategy to increase security.  
by paving on Sat Feb 2nd, 2013 at 11:51:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that America has not been successful in explaining its policies to the Muslim world.

Stealing their resources, killing them with drone ... they understand the policies alright. And they don't like 'em.

The good news ... it's only a life sentence. You eventually leave this planet of idiots.

by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Sat Feb 2nd, 2013 at 04:25:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The U.N. Settlement Report: Just The Facts - The Daily Beast

There's something bracing to official Israel's decades-long insistence that it will reject the world's reality and substitute its own.

On Thursday the United Nations published a report regarding Israeli settlement policy, a report that revealed nothing that wasn't already public knowledge--indeed, much of the information was first brought to light by Israelis. At the end of its report, the U.N. calls on Israel to do something to which Israel in fact committed a full decade ago: "Cease all settlement activities without preconditions." If you don't remember that the Government of Israel [GOI] committed itself to precisely that back in 2003--in an agreement also signed by the Bush Administration, the EU, the U.N., and Russia--let me remind you:

GOI immediately dismantles settlement outposts erected since March 2001. Consistent with the Mitchell Report, GOI freezes all settlement activity (including natural growth of settlements). [parenthetical in original]



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:41:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Larry Derfner
Thursday's Senate confirmation hearing of Chuck Hagel was something out of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible," or the 1950s House Un-American Activities Committee sessions. "Senator Hagel, are you now or have you ever been a realist?" "Your soul is in peril, Senator - recant!"

And Hagel recanted, over and over again. Under pressure on Iran and Israel (among other taboo subjects), he apologized to his inquisitors for referring to the "Jewish lobby" ("I should have said `pro-Israel lobby'"), apologized for saying it "intimidated" people ("I should have said `influenced'"), caved in over saying the lobby had gotten Congress to do "dumb" things (couldn't think of a dumb thing it had ever gotten Congress to do).

by gk (g k quattro due due sette "at" gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 03:47:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The confirmation hearing is a kangaroo court and he's going to throw whatever bullshit he can at them so he can move-on to his rubber stamp.  I think his lack of skill at this is probably a good sign.   Failing to take it seriously is also a positive indicator.

Reading anything about future US military policy from the answers at this hearing would be total folly.

by paving on Sat Feb 2nd, 2013 at 11:53:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Did you see the characters on that committee. All flaming assholes!

The good news ... it's only a life sentence. You eventually leave this planet of idiots.
by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Sat Feb 2nd, 2013 at 04:26:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
LIVING OFF THE PLANET
Environment, Energy, Agriculture, Food


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:57:35 PM EST
US carbon emissions fall to lowest levels since 1994 | Environment | guardian.co.uk

America's carbon dioxide emissions last year fell to their lowest levels since 1994, according to a new report.

Carbon dioxide emissions fell by 13% in the past five years, because of new energy-saving technologies and a doubling in the take-up of renewable energy, the report compiled by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) for the Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE) said.

The reduction in climate pollution - even as Congress failed to act on climate change - brings America more than halfway towards Barack Obama's target of cutting emissions by 17% from 2005 levels over the next decade, the Bloomberg analysts said.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:13:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
(Shit, this brilliant comment was nuked by Safari as i only have 17 high load tabs open, but i'll try to recreate.)

CO2 decrease is primarily due to increased use of gas from hydraulic fracturing replacing coal, not the other factors mentioned, though of course they help to some degree.

US gas and oil fracturing is completely changing the energy power equations around the globe. the propaganda machine is being unleashed, in Yurp with focus on UK, Poland and 'Schland. I didn't realize its strength until just recently.

The amount of new hydro-fracturing leases being let in the the US is many times more than the wildest fantasies of renewable growth. It will most certainly change the power balance in the global energy game. In fact, already is. Believe me that the higher floors at Gazprom and the palaces of desert monarchies are paying very close attention.

Taken together with the ascendancy of climate skepticism, where stray trees are mistaken for forests even on ET, the explosive growth of fucking fracking could well derail the growth in renewable energy globally, as governments back off previous commitment.

it's that serious.

This deserves a very serious diary, but for me the war is just beginning.

Im reminded of the the joke a woman told me last night:
Two Planets meet in a deep space bar.
Hey Big Blue, how ya doing?
Not so good, i'm ill, i've got humans.
Ow, that's tough but don't worry, it'll pass.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Anaïs Nin

by Crazy Horse on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 01:22:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Pollution-hit Beijing residents asked to cut back on New Year fireworks | Environment | guardian.co.uk

China's notoriously smog-bound capital Beijing asked residents on Friday to set off fewer fireworks over this month's Chinese New Year period as it battles a persistent air quality crisis.

Air quality in Beijing has mostly stayed above "very unhealthy" and "hazardous" levels for about two weeks, though strong winds cleared the haze away on Friday.

Chinese New Year, which begins 10 February, is marked by riotous fireworks displays traditionally thought to bring good luck for the year ahead, which turn cities into near war zones and blacken the skies with thick smoke for hours on end.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:13:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ladbrokes is gambling with fish extinction - and so is the government | George Monbiot | Environment | guardian.co.uk

I've come across some odd ways to make a living, but few as strange as this. The gambling company Ladbrokes has been offering odds on the conservation status of various fish species. Earlier in the week it was taking bets on mackerel after it was taken off conservationists' "fish to eat" list last month. Recently it has encouraged people to punt on the survival prospects of stocks of yellow fin tuna, swordfish and haddock. You can, if you wish, gamble on extinction. (Ladbrokes' link was live yesterday, but dead this morning.)

It'll be a while before I put my money on the recovery of any species in British waters.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:14:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
China's first AP 1000 nuclear power reactor to come online - Xinhua | English.news.cn

China's first nuclear power reactor using U.S.-based Westinghouse Electric AP 1000 technology is expected to begin operations in October 2014, the manager of a Chinese nuclear power company said Friday.

Gu Jun, general manager of the State Nuclear Power Technology Corp., said construction of the reactor is proceeding well.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:33:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Schwarzenegger calls for more readiness in combating climate problems - Xinhua | English.news.cn

Actor and former Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger called for more willingness in combating climate problems at the opening of his Vienna R20 Conference Thursday.

"We should not be part of the problem, but part of the solution. Together we can bring the destruction of the environment to a stop - terminate it," he said.

Schwarzenegger mentioned three points in a "recipe for success" which he said he used to turn California into a green flagship state. Firstly, political ideology needed to be removed from the issue, he said, adding "There is no liberal or conservative air, we all breathe the same air."



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:34:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC News - UK moth numbers suffer crash, 40-year study shows

Two-thirds of Britain's 337 species of common larger moths have experienced a substantial decline over the past four decades, a survey has shown.

The V-moth (Marcaria wauaria), once a common sight in gardens, recorded a 99% fall in numbers from 1968-2007.

Habitat loss and deteriorating land are thought to be behind the decline.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:37:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
durn kitties again...

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 05:13:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Wind turbines, shurely....
by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:15:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
U.S. military gets serious about microgrids ... which is more exciting than it sounds | Grist

The U.S. military is one of the few institutions in the country with the capacity and the mandate to plan for the long term. That means it can bring a sustained focus to finding what works, tolerating some failures and high costs in the short term for strategic advantage down the road.

Consequently, we're going to learn a ton from the military's efforts. Right now, when we think about a microgrid that can island itself, we think either inclement circumstances (remote villages) or mission-critical activities (military bases). But as I wrote the other day, a truly resilient power grid would effectively be a patchwork of networked, overlapping microgrids. It makes sense for every region or even neighborhood to have some capacity to take care of itself should surrounding areas experience blackout or attack. It makes the whole system more fault-tolerant.

by Bernard on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 10:17:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 LIVING ON THE PLANET 
 Society, Culture, History, Information 


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:58:07 PM EST
NASA sees Earth-directed coronal mass ejection erupt from Sun - Xinhua | English.news.cn

The Sun erupted with an Earth- directed coronal mass ejection, or CME, at 2:09 a.m. EST (0609 GMT) on Thursday morning, U.S. space agency NASA announced.

Experimental NASA research models, based on observations from the Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory, and Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, show that the CME left the sun at speeds of around 575 miles per second, which is a fairly typical speed for CMEs. Historically, CMEs at this speed are mild, NASA said in a statement.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:32:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Blood & Treasure

The Kaulong people, one of the dozens of small populations living along the southern watershed of the Island of New Britain, just East of New Guinea, formerly practised the ritual strangling of widows. When a man died, his widow called upon her brothers to strangle her. She was not nurderously strangled against her will, nor was she pressured into this ritualized form of suicide by other members of her society. Instead, she had grown up observing it as the custom, followed the custom when she became widowed herself, strongly urged her brothers (or her son if she had no brothers) to fulfil their solemn obligation to strangle her despite their natural reluctance, and sat co-operatively while they did strangle her.

From The World Until Yesterday, Jared Diamond's latest. I'm interviewing him tomorrow so I won't be blogging until very late at least.

did socieities evolve this barbarity in order not to have too many unattached females around?

other places they can marry a brother-in-law.

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 10:08:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 PEOPLE AND KLATSCH 


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 01:59:24 PM EST
Geoffrey Matthews - Telegraph

Sir Peter Scott founded WWT, at Slimbridge, the Gloucestershire wetland reserve, in 1946, and nine years later, to establish it as an international centre of research and conservation , recruited Matthews, an authority on bird navigation.

Matthews dedicated the next 33 years of his life to WWT, building a team of scientists which developed waterfowl biology using the Slimbridge collection of birds and observing ducks, geese and swans in the wild.

Many of their discoveries -- such as the long-distance migrations of waterbirds between Eastern and Western Europe -- are now taken for granted. They carried out regular counts of waterbirds throughout Britain, and introduced sophisticated ringing and catching schemes. WWT was soon attracting visiting scientists from all over the world.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:45:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Anne Shand - Telegraph

She began her career in 1955 as a scientific officer at the Ordnance Board, where she encountered her first computer, the enormous Ferranti Mark 1 Star. Two years later she joined the staff of the Scientific Adviser to the Air Ministry, and from 1960 to 1964 her work was devoted entirely to the British nuclear deterrent, which was then provided by the RAF's V-Bomber force. Her duties included an assessment of the likely infrastructure damage and casualty rates in target areas and also survivability for the aircraft dropping the bombs.

She was not always made to feel welcome. On her appointment to this highly secret organisation, her immediate boss remarked: "I never wanted a woman in my team, but all the men were so awful that I couldn't help taking her on." Anne Shand found this amusing and took it as a challenge



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 02:46:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Who Is America's Favorite NFL Team? Facebook Data Offer A Clear Winner.

You've seen Facebook's map of geographic NFL fandom. Our clever friends at the Harvard College Sports Analysis Collective dig deeper into the data to discover America's most popular football teams.

For an NFL franchise to truly be "America's Team," as the Cowboys have claimed to be for 35 years, they would need to be beloved across the nation, by more people in more places than any other team. But the Cowboys haven't won a Super Bowl in 17 years. They've struggled through mediocrity for a decade. Is the nickname accurate, out of date, or is it just an ingenious marketing ploy that has convinced pundits to repeat ad nauseam?



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 03:17:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think the tag "America's Team" when referring to the Cowboys is mostly used sarcastically these days.
by paving on Sat Feb 2nd, 2013 at 11:56:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]



"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Fri Feb 1st, 2013 at 10:03:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Of course all of Yurp awaits the kickoff to this year's 4.5 hour advertising championship, with an hour of amurkan football interrupting.  BUT:



"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Anaïs Nin

by Crazy Horse on Sun Feb 3rd, 2013 at 12:49:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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