Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

European Salon de News, Discussion et Klatsch - 26 October

by Fran Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:54:33 PM EST

 A Daily Review Of International Online Media 


Europeans on this date in history:

1911 – Sorley MacLean, one of the most significant Scottish poets of the 20th century, was born. (d. 1996)

More here and here

 The European Salon is a daily selection of news items to which you are invited to contribute. Post links to news stories that interest you, or just your comments. Come in and join us!


The Salon has different rooms or sections for your enjoyment. If you would like to join the discussion, then to add a link or comment to a topic or section, please click on "Reply to this" in one of the following sections:

  • EUROPE - is the place for anything to do with Europe.
  • ECONOMY & FINANCE - is where you find what is going on in finance and the economy.
  • WORLD - here you can add links and comments on topics concerning world affairs.
  • LIVING OFF THE PLANET - is about the environment, energy, agriculture, food...
  • LIVING ON THE PLANET - is about humanity, society, culture, history, information...
  • PEOPLE AND KLATSCH - this is the place for stories about people and off course also for gossipy items. But it's also there for open discussion at any time.
  • SPECIAL FOCUS - will be up only for special events and topics, as occasion warrants.

I hope you will find this place inspiring - of course meaning the inspiration gained here to show up in interesting diaries on ET. :-)

There is just one favor I would like to ask you - please do NOT click on "Post a Comment", as this will put the link or your comment out of context at the bottom of the page.

Actually, there is another favor I would like to ask you - please, enjoy yourself and have fun at this place!

Display:
 EUROPE 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:40:20 AM EST
Nick Griffin attacked by his own BNP supporters over Question Time | Politics | The Observer

The leader of the BNP, Nick Griffin, found himself the victim of an extraordinary attack from his own supporters last night following his controversial appearance on the BBC's Question Time.

As a public postmortem into one of the most divisive broadcasts in the corporation's history attempted to gauge its impact on the party's fortunes, Lee Barnes, the BNP's legal officer, accused Griffin of "failing to press the attack" during the televised debate, which was watched by a record 8 million people. Others sympathetic to the BNP's views expressed dismay at Griffin's flustered attempts to appeal to the mainstream.

The BNP's critics were quick to use the comments as proof of deep divisions within the party's membership over how it should position itself with the electorate. Griffin has claimed that he has dragged the party into the political mainstream. But the resulting backlash from those on his own side suggests many are uncomfortable with the BNP's attempts to cloak itself in more moderate terms.

Barnes complained on his personal website that Griffin "should have stood up to these whining, middle-class hypocrites that use the race card for self-enrichment - and thrown the truth right back into their fat, sanctimonious, hypocritical, self-serving faces". He accused his party's leader of "failing to press the attack" on the "ethnic middle class" for "taking up the best jobs while still playing the bogus race card for every opportunity". And in a move that is likely to reinforce concerns that Griffin's appearance will spark violence, Barnes used his personal website to suggest that "perhaps there needs to be a few 'white riots' around the country a la the Brixton riots of the 1980s before the idiot white liberal middle class and their ethnic middle-class fellow travellers wake up".

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:45:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
BNP Leader Nick Griffin Labelled A 'Squalid Racist' By Lord Carey, Following Latest Poll Findings | Politics | Sky News
The former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey has urged Christians to reject the BNP - labelling Nick Griffin a "squalid racist".

He told the News of the World that the party leader's claims to represent Christian Britain on the BBC's Question Time were "chilling".

During his appearance on Thursday, Mr Griffin said if Muslims wanted to remain in Britain they had to accept that it was "a fundamentally British and Christian country".

But Lord Carey responded: "This squalid racist must not be allowed to hijack one of the world's great religions."

His comments came as a new poll suggested controversial British National Party policies on immigration, sex education and Islam have resonance with significant numbers of voters.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:30:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
a fundamentally British and Christian country

Well, of course Britain is a British country, what else would it be ? Chinese ?

The more thorny question is the Christian thing. In terms of observation Britain is mostly disinterested. Nominally Christian at best. However our culture is derived from Christianity and that's an important difference. The xtianity he refers to in more old testament, more high catholic intolerancethan the cuddly CofE protestantism that informs britishness. But cos most commentators don't understand that, and Carey has a strong vested interest in not understanding that, that isn't going to come across

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:14:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Bosses to be told to offer more part-time work for parents | Life and style | The Observer

Employers will be expected to offer more part-time jobs for working parents under a major shift in government thinking on family life. The move is likely to provoke an outcry from business and accusations that ministers are not taking into account the financial burden of extending workers' rights during a recession.

Yvette Cooper, the work and pensions secretary, wants firms that advertise full-time posts in jobcentres to consider opening them up to job sharers or part-time workers. However, the Observer understands senior ministers are also considering proposals to extend flexible working laws - which allow parents to ask only their current boss if they can reduce their hours - to future employers. That could permit a woman applying for a new job to ask first about changing her hours to fit school runs, for example.

Employers can refuse flexible working requests but critically must provide a rational business case for doing so.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:47:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is Tony Blair the right man to be president of Europe? | Charles Grant and Henry Porter | Comment is free | The Observer
Is Tony Blair the right man to be president of Europe?

Yes, says Charles Grant. His presence would improve the global credibility of the EU. No, says Henry Porter. He co-authored the Iraq war and is not a convinced democrat

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:48:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Miliband backs Blair as EU president - Europe, World - The Independent

Foreign Secretary David Miliband today gave his strong backing to Tony Blair's candidacy to be the first permanent President of the European Union.

But he ruled himself out of the other high-ranking post created by the Lisbon Treaty, High Representative for Foreign Affairs, saying: "I am not a candidate for that. I am not available."

Mr Miliband said that a Blair presidency would be "very good for Britain as well as very good for Europe" and said he was "puzzled" by Conservative opposition to the prospect of having a British politician in such a senior European role.

The Foreign Secretary, a close personal ally of Mr Blair, appeared to suggest that the former Prime Minister would be interested in the post only if it gave him real political clout in the international arena.

The leaders of the 27 EU member states meet in Brussels on Thursday to thrash out the remit of the new president, with some of the smaller states believed to favour a low-profile role involving little more than chairing meetings.

Mr Miliband indicated that Mr Blair wanted a job in which, when he arrives in foreign capitals, "the traffic does need to stop" and he is guaranteed access to political leaders at the highest level.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:03:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"Mr Miliband indicated that Mr Blair wanted a job in which, when he arrives in foreign capitals, "the traffic does need to stop" "

Shouldn't that be enough to disqualify him as an unsufferable little twat?

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 03:26:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
(disqualify him for the position, that is)

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi
by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 03:27:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Milliband:
he is guaranteed access to political leaders at the highest level

Once again, British assumptions are that a non-Brit in a position of authority in the EU would simply be ignored by the rest of the world. No doubt this is another version of the irrelevancy meme: Europe outside Britain is irrelevant.

Do the Brits realize that this very arrogance is yet another powerful reason why Blair (or Milliband, or any Brit) should not hold major office in the Union?

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:03:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You mis-read him:

Mr Miliband indicated that Mr Blair wanted a job in which, when he arrives in foreign capitals, "the traffic does need to stop" and he is guaranteed access to political leaders at the highest level.

At least the honestly is refreshing. He openly admits that Blair wants the job for self-aggrandizing purposes.

by det on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:22:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, it can be read that way. But how about his saying that Europe needs Blair,

Miliband backs Blair as EU president - Europe, World - The Independent

otherwise we will find the world run by America and China without any reference to us

?

Only SuperBlair can save us now! ;)

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:37:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, he's not saying that it the being Brit that is the do all and end all. Just that Blair and he alone would be quite the match for USA and China (ahahahahahaha on both counts).

Of course, it's a bit ludicrous to claim that this position is created to concentrate the power of the EU, it's anything but, but then he's a Blair campaigner so we can't expect much sense.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 05:39:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That very arrogance extends across the whole British politico-cultural spectrum; it would disqualify practically every brit.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:15:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
...and a fair number of French too.
by Bernard on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 12:09:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Poland joins growing list of countries opposing Tony Blair's bid to be EU president - Telegraph
Tony Blair's hopes of becoming the first president of the European Union have been dealt a potentially fatal blow by Poland.

The Polish prime minister, Donald Tusk, has submitted a report to the European Commission saying his country will not support a high profile candidate who has ambitions to enlarge the role.

The move is a significant setback for the former Labour prime minister who has been privately courting supporters for his candidacy for the role, which is to be created under the terms of the Lisbon Treaty.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:24:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Move Poland to "Against" in Blair Scorecard by Jake...
by Nomad on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:59:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
politicalbetting.com|Can the Tories black-ball Blair?

With just one country left to ratify the Lisbon treaty we are getting closer to the moment when the EU will be appointing the first President of the EU council who is likely to become referred to as the President of Europe.

The big question, and there' quite a bit of betting on this, is who is going to get it? Can Tony Blair, Labour's star three-times election winner who was ousted to make way for Brown be the right man? There are many who think so and certainly PaddyPower and Ladbrokes make him the favourite.

But before punters act take a look at from the Observer by Charles Grant of the Centre for European Reform highlighted by the Spectator Coffee House blog.


"..Yet it may be the Conservatives who spike Blair's chances of getting the job. William Hague, the shadow foreign secretary, has told the other EU governments that the Conservatives would see support for a Blair presidency as a "hostile act".

A week ago, Blair was the clear favourite, with the likely support of Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain, plus several of the smaller countries. But on my travels around Europe last week, I have found that Hague's comments have made a huge impact...A number of prime ministers are unwilling to take a step that would incur the wrath of an incoming Conservative government. President Sarkozy and Chancellor Merkel remain supporters of Blair, but are now hesitating over backing a man with so many opponents.

The Conservatives may have achieved their first diplomatic coup in Europe, even before taking office."

For one of the challenges at the fag end of a parliament is that the perception of what's going to happen is very much shaped by opinion polls leading to individuals and organisations adjusting their positions accordingly.


I hate the Tories so much I almost want Blair to win.

Money is a sign of Poverty - Culture Saying
by RogueTrooper on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 05:07:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I still think Hague is playing a double bluff. He wants Blair in europe as an excuse to trash europe domestically. He's taking the view that european leaders are going to spite him by doing what he says he doesn't want.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:17:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A number of prime ministers are unwilling to take a step that would incur the wrath of an incoming Conservative government.

Even Charles Grant is talking up the Tory opposition to Bliar. But, I guess, it is more comfortable than dealing with the real reasons Austria et al don't want him.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:02:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]

A number of prime ministers are unwilling to take a step that would incur the wrath of an incoming Conservative government.

I very much doubt that.

Money is a sign of Poverty - Culture Saying
by RogueTrooper on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 08:34:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yet another article that makes Tory victory in next years general election seem inevitable, knocking down the Labour vote even further.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:01:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That's pretty much is inevitable.

I remember, at the time  of Blair's election as Labour leader, people referring to it as Labour's Faustian Bargain. Back then, when I still had the foolishness of youth, I thought the people who said that were just "haters". However, in light of "recent economic events" and the Labour government's hand in their creation...

After the dust has settled from the next general election, Britain will probably need to find itself another centre left party. The current one has a date with a German.

Money is a sign of Poverty - Culture Saying

by RogueTrooper on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:36:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Postal strike hangover could hit Christmas | UK news | The Observer

The union representing Britain's striking postal workers increased the pressure on Royal Mail management yesterday when it warned there would be a backlog of at least 150m letters and packets if this week's three-day strike went ahead.

The huge volume - up to five times the estimated backlog so far - could take weeks to clear and place acute pressure on the postal system before Christmas. The claim came as both sides agreed to hold talks tomorrow at the TUC following an invitation from its general secretary, Brendan Barber, who helped resolve the last national strike in 2007.

"I have had a number of conversations with Brendan Barber and I'm very pleased we seem to have found a sensible and positive way forward," said the Royal Mail chief executive, Adam Crozier.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:55:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
TUC raises hopes of end to post strike as parties agree to talks - Home News, UK - The Independent

There were hopes last night of a breakthrough in the postal dispute after the two sides agreed to hold talks.

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) said yesterday it had invited the Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union (CWU) to the table tomorrow and that both had accepted. The union umbrella body was hopeful of an end to the wrangling that led to two one-day strikes last week.

"I have had a number of conversations with [the TUC's General Secretary] Brendan Barber over the last few days and I'm very pleased we seem to have found a sensible and positive way forward," the Royal Mail chief executive, Adam Crozier, said yesterday, as workers began clearing the backlog of 30 million letters and parcels.

The CWU had planned another series of strikes to start this Thursday, and the dispute was expected to escalate further after it emerged that the trade union Unite has written to 10,000 Royal Mail managers saying it supported the strike action.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:09:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Opposition activist killed in southern Russia - Europe, World - The Independent

Regional police say a prominent opposition activist in the Russian province of Ingushetia has been shot and killed by unidentified gunmen.

Police spokeswoman Madina Khadziyeva says Maksharip Aushev died Sunday when several assailants sprayed his vehicle with automatic gunfire. Khadziyeva said the attack occurred on a road in the neighboring province of Kabardino-Balkariya.

Aushev had worked with Magomed Yevloyev, a journalist, lawyer and opposition activist who was detained and killed by police in August 2008. Police said at the time that Yevloyev was shot and killed after he tried to grab a weapon from one of the officers.

Ingushetia and other provinces in Russia's volatile North Caucasus, including Chechnya, are seeing increasing violence.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:02:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Reuters AlertNet - Opposition activist killed in Russia's Ingushetia
MOSCOW, Oct 25 (Reuters) - An opposition activist from Russia's Ingushetia region was shot dead in his car on Sunday in the latest sign of rising violence in the North Caucasus.

The opposition figure and local businessman, Maksharip Aushev, was driving near the town of Nalchik in the nearby region of Kabardino-Balkaria when his car was hit by gunfire, the opposition website said, confirming earlier agency reports.

The attack with automatic weapons took place on a main road running through the region, but the full circumstances remained unclear, the website stated.

Aushev was a strong critic of the region's former president, Murat Zyazikov, but had good relations with Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, the Kremlin appointee who took over the position a year ago. Yevkurov was himself seriously injured in a June bomb blast.

Attacks in the North Caucasus regions under Moscow's control have risen sharply this year.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:22:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Transsexual blackmail plot forces Governor of Lazio to step down - Europe, World - The Independent

A scandal has rocked Italy's main opposition party on the eve of today's nationwide primary designed to select a new leader and relaunch the party's sagging fortunes.

According to widespread media reports, a video has come to light showing the centre-left Governor of the Lazio region, Piero Marrazzo, in the company of a transsexual in a Rome apartment. Four policemen have been arrested for allegedly attempting to blackmail Mr Marrazzo, 51. An investigation is under way.

The video has not been publicly seen and officials have not confirmed its existence. Mr Marrazzo was quoted in the Italian newspaper La Repubblica saying that "the video is fake" and that he is the victim of a smear campaign. However, in response to mounting pressure, he said yesterday that he was stepping aside from the high-profile job of Governor of Lazio, which includes Rome, and was leaving day-to-day responsibilities in the hands of his deputy.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:04:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Italy opposition votes for leader amid scandal | World news | The Guardian
Married Lazio governor resigns on eve of Democratic party election after video reportedly shows him with transsexual

Several million Italians were today voting to elect the man whose unenviable job will be to try to unseat Silvio Berlusconi.

True to its name, the Democratic party (PD), Italy's biggest opposition group, chooses its leader by popular ballot. Anyone of 16 or more who is legally resident in Italy can pay €2 to take part. The election was held against a background of scandal. Piero Marrazzo, the PD governor of Lazio, the region around Rome, resigned on yesterday after it emerged that Carabinieri officers had been planning to blackmail him with a video reportedly showing the married governor with a transsexual.

It was the latest blow to a party that lags Berlusconi's in the polls, despite a string of sex scandals involving the prime minister. In February, the PD's former secretary, Walter Veltroni, stepped down after a heavy defeat in a regional poll.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:44:33 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Prominent opposition governor steps down before Democratic Party primaries | France 24
Piero Marrazzo, a prominent opposition politician, resigned on Saturday after police were accused of blackmailing him with a video allegedly showing him with a transsexual. His Democratic Party was hoping Sunday's primary would revive its fortunes.

AFP - A key Italian opposition politician resigned on Saturday as his party prepared to elect a new leader after police were accused of blackmailing him with a video allegedly showing him with a transsexual.
  
Piero Marrazzo stepped down as governor of the Lazio region, which includes Rome, a day before the nationwide primary the Democratic Party hopes will revive its flagging fortunes.
  
"I decided to suspend myself...," said Marrazzo, adding that he would be replaced provisionally by his deputy Esterino Montino.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:46:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What an asshole. A good administrator who can't administer his personal life- and lies about it. Good riddance. An outright compulsion to suicide.

Anyway, Pierluigi Bersani is the new head of the PD. Over three million votes cast. It will be up to Bersani to create a party after the "Camelot" years of Veltroni and Franceschini. He's tough, ironic and speaks Italian better than most modern politicians. He is rumored to have a weakness for gambling. As a singer he's better than Berlusconi. Bersani's real problem will be to bring back the Left diaspora that deserted Veltroni, then Soru, in the national and regional elections. He's going to have to talk and act "Left" and come across on secular ethics.

But with the present sedimentation of voting habits that are practically a carbon copy of the old DC-PCI division of Italy, he will likely be, as then, the eternal opposition chamberlain.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 06:30:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But why should it matter? What relevance should his sexuality have to his position?

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi
by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 03:29:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I understand that Italian culture is very homophobic, it goes together with the excessive boastful-of-multiple-conquests macho culture that normalises qualities that would be repellent elsewhere. Eg all the whoring Burlesquoni does.

So being cuaght with a TV would be political death, total loss of macho credibility.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:21:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I could care less about his sexuality. It's a question of transparency, accountability and plain lying. As a public figure, he's got to respond. As a father and husband, that's his business.

I find his behavior outright idiotic. He took out loans to pay incredible sums for sex: up to € 5000 a trick. He wrote out checks- no cash!- to pay services. He was allegedly being blackmailed by four corrupt cops, but didn't report the crime. Although there is nothing on him for drug use, he would have to be damned stupid not to notice the amounts of coke being moved around him.

Three years ago the rightwing tried to frame him on this with a pre-election smear campaign. At the time everyone thought he was being smeared. Now it appears the rightwing was well aware of his extramarital activity. One wonders if his mandate as governor has been influenced by certain people's knowledge of his habits- habits that he sought to conceal with a masochistic dose of idiocy.

Give me Luxuria any day. He's totally candid about his trans-sexuality (he hasn't yet taken the final steps) and got elected to parliament, perhaps the first in Europe. No problem. Luxuria is as candid and open as daylight. Marazzo, No.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:28:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The truth about immigration: Citizenships granted fall by 35,000 in a year - Home News, UK - The Independent

Britain's immigration rate is decreasing and we are far from being "swamped", according to an official report presented to the Foreign Office last week. The new figures, obtained by The Independent on Sunday, suggest the Government is starting to get immigration under control. They undermine gloomy warnings of "overcrowding" made by pressure groups and parties including the British National Party.

Applications for British citizenship have also shown a marked decline in recent years, as economic turmoil and government shake-ups have had an impact on the numbers attempting to settle in the UK.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:09:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Citizenships aren't really a relevant or even useful measure here. After all, who measured how many poles lived here when they were arriving in droves ? Or how many left when the economy collapsed ?

And seeing as non-european immigration is a fraction of the european comings and goings it's all a bit pointless.

As for the last paragraph, that's entirely bsides the point. The main issue has been that the government has made it practically impossible to apply for asylum. So unless you've got a job, you can't get citizenship.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:26:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Colleges told: raise standards if you want more cash - Education News, Education - The Independent

Universities will be subject to more rigorous school-style inspections to earn the right to charge students more for their services.

Lord Mandelson is expected to demand increased accountability from universities in return for raising the cap on tuition fees, as part of an imminent shake-up of higher education. The universities watchdog, the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA), will get greater powers to enable it to carry out regular, in-depth investigations of individual courses, departments and entire institutions. It will also be given powers to demand immediate improvements and impose huge fines on universities if they fail to meet its standards.

It was revealed yesterday that the number of students complaining about their courses, including teaching and marking, had doubled since 2005. The independent adjudicator Robert Behrens said: "There's no sign that these numbers are going to diminish in the coming years."

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:18:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Also, Oxbridge gets more money and charges higher fees, just because.
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:05:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Colleges and iniversities don't reuqire teaching qualifications, so their teaching is quite poor. I remember standards of teaching at uni that were quite shocking. Rambling unfocussed and almost incomprehensible. I remeber a maths course as part of my degree where a guy who already had a maths degree said he couldn't follow what the tutor was on about.

I passed that year by ignoring his notes and using Stroud.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:28:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
While a teaching qualification probably wouldn't hurt, in the end you can't teach someone how to teach - given time, those that can do the job figure it out, and those that can't figure it out and quit.  Not everyone is cut out for being a teacher, just like not everyone is cut out to be a firefighter or a paramedic.

However, the real problem is that the real job of an academic has nothing to do with teaching, by design.  It's to research and be prestigious.  Teaching gets in the way of the requisite begging and researching required to publish, and thus is unimportant.  When people are hired and promoted as "professors" based on criteria that have absolutely nothing do do with their professing, it's not surprising that the quality of instruction is lacking.

by Zwackus on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 08:02:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC NEWS | Scotland | Families welcome Lockerbie review

The families of the victims of the Lockerbie bombing have welcomed moves by police in Scotland to pursue "several potential lines of inquiry".

However, they renewed calls for a public inquiry in to the 1988 atrocity.

The fresh police probe comes after the only man convicted of the atrocity, Abdelbasset al-Megrahi, dropped his appeal before he was returned to Libya.

Prosecutors said Megrahi, who was freed in August on compassionate grounds, was not working alone.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:33:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
New German government to seek removal of US nuclear weapons | Germany | Deutsche Welle | 25.10.2009
Foreign Minister-designate Guido Westerwelle has renewed calls for a withdrawal of US nuclear weapons based in Germany, saying he would hold talks with the Obama adminstration on the issue. 

Speaking at a meeting of his business-friendly FDP party in Berlin on Sunday, Westerwelle said the new German government would support the vision of US President Barack Obama for a world free of nuclear weapons.

"We will take President Obama at his word and enter talks with our allies so that the last of the nuclear weapons still stationed in Germany, relics of the Cold War, can finally be removed," Westerwelle said.

"Germany must be free of nuclear weapons," he said, adding that he would personally make efforts towards that purpose.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:16:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Harriet Harman leads EU women's initiative | Politics | guardian.co.uk
Minister wants politicians from across Europe to work together to ensure women play an equal role in rebuilding economies after the credit crunch

Harriet Harman is spearheading an initiative to bring together female leaders within the European Union, to push to the centre of the political agenda issues such as workplace discrimination against women and female representation on the boards of big companies.

The minister for women and equality is calling for a new "international architecture" to enable politicians from different countries to work collectively to ensure women play an equal role in rebuilding economies after the credit crunch.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:22:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian: Police in £9m scheme to log 'domestic extremists'
Police are gathering the personal details of thousands of activists who attend political meetings and protests, and storing their data on a network of nationwide intelligence databases.

The hidden apparatus has been constructed to monitor "domestic extremists", the Guardian can reveal in the first of a three-day series into the policing of protests. Detailed information about the political activities of campaigners is being stored on a number of overlapping IT systems, even if they have not committed a crime.

Senior officers say domestic extremism, a term coined by police that has no legal basis, can include activists suspected of minor public order offences such as peaceful direct action and civil disobedience.

Once you get on the database, they use automated number-plate recognition to track your movements.  For protesting. Police state, anyone?

by IdiotSavant on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 07:05:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian: How police rebranded lawful protest as 'domestic extremism'
The term "domestic extremism" is now common currency within the police. It is a phrase which shapes how forces seek to control demonstrations. It has led to the personal details and photographs of a substantial number of protesters being stored on secret police databases around the country. There is no official or legal definition of the term. Instead, the police have made a vague stab at what they think it means. Senior officers describe domestic extremists as individuals or groups "that carry out criminal acts of direct action in furtherance of a campaign. These people and activities usually seek to prevent something from happening or to change legislation or domestic policy, but attempt to do so outside of the normal democratic process." They say they are mostly associated with single issues and suggest the majority of protesters are never considered extremists.

Police insist they are just monitoring the minority who could damage property or commit aggravated trespass, causing significant disruption to lawful businesses. Activists respond by claiming this is an excuse that gives police the licence to carry out widespread surveillance of whole organisations that are a legitimate part of the democratic process.

They also warn that the categorisation carries echoes of the cold war, when the security services monitored constitutional campaigns such as the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Anti-Apartheid Movement because alleged subversives or communists were said to be active within them, although they said the organisations themselves were not subversive.

by IdiotSavant on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 07:06:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"These people and activities usually seek to prevent something from happening or to change legislation or domestic policy, but attempt to do so outside of the normal democratic process.""

I always thought protests were part of the normal democratic process.

I guess civics class changed a lot since I was last in high school.  Is this a definition of democrat processes I wasn't previously aware of?

"Schiller sprach zu Goethe, Steck in dem Arsch die Flöte! Goethe sagte zu Schiller, Mein Arsch ist kein Triller!"

by Jeffersonian Democrat (rzg6f@virginia.edu) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:27:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Britain has never been particularly fond of dissent. We have no constitution and until recently we were subjects of the Crown not citizens. So our civil law is built around the granting of privileges, not the acquisition of rights.

So police have always, at some level, been involved in enforcing compliance. There have been documented legalised abuses since the 70s.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:31:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There have been documented legalised abuses since the 70s.
There were a few of those kind of problems in the US back then, but we had a constitution, so fortunately the US doesn't have those kind of problems anymore.

<psfeufs>ha ha ha ...fortunately, this is an EU news site and no one will get that US-centric joke.

Never underestimate their intelligence, always underestimate their knowledge.

Frank Delaney ~ Ireland

by siegestate (siegestate or beyondwarispeace.com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 04:34:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
carry out criminal acts of direct action in furtherance of a campaign

Are the police tracking politicians, bankers and stock brokers now?
by Andhakari on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 02:07:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Republic | Blog » Blog Archive » Tell UKTI what you think of Prince Andrew

Prince Andrew, or the UK Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, has been doing our work for us this weekend.

His comments about bankers' bonuses and non-doms have not only led to damaging headlines, but have also earned a stinging rebuke from the Treasury. As Norman Baker MP put it: "It is not his job to make political statements, particularly not when they are in favour of his well-heeled friends."

But it's the following quote which is perhaps most revealing:

   I was brought up to do this sort of work. It is training, experience and genetics. We offer consistency and regularity. We have been around for a long time and will be around for a long time. We are not going to disappear. I have a family pedigree that allows me time to build up relationships.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:01:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A family pedigree that includes a solid strain of porphyria ie that which caused the madness of King Geroge II and sundry other royals.

I always find this pedigree nonsense overdone. At various points in hisotry the crown was handed to relatives sop distant that, in ordinary circumstances, the two parties would not have known they were related.

And there's the Henry VII succession thing (the wrong bloke got crowned)

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:26:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The thing I dont understand is this odd idea of how breeding works differently in Humans and animals that seems to be shared by European royalty and the BNP. In every other creature its the mongrels and random cross breeds that are genetically stronger, more viable, less likely to die from illnesses, all those fun things that add up in dogs to an extra couple of years on average to dogs over pure breeds that have been bread for specific traits.

The BNP argues that  mixing of races weakens the individual, which flies against all medical knowledge of the last several hundred years. and royalty argue that their bloodlines have been superior, (Although they have been killing off the most successful members, possibly leaving us with a form of breeding for quietness over the last milenium)

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 08:03:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
That's a whole other thing. Pedigree is used by animal breeders to bring out desireable traits. Unfortuately for Andrew, the political expediency of individual matches is rarely designed to improve functional capacity, in fact he is the finest demonstration that marryng your cousin through too many generations leads to degenerate genetics.

He hasn't been bred for purpose, he hasn't been bred for leadership or even for the enhanced networking ability he claims. His ancestors merely bred with each other for lineage & convenience and mostly died out over the last 100 years as they finally inbred so closely there was no intellectual viability amongst the lot of them.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:36:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Al Jazeera English - Europe - German 'veil martyr' trial begins

A man accused of killing a pregnant Egyptian woman in court in an attack is to go on trial in Germany.

Prosecutors say the defendant, identified as Alex W, stabbed Marwa al-Sherbini at least 16 times in three minutes on July 1, in the same courthouse where
his three-week trial will be held.

Some 200 police officers will guard the proceedings in the eastern city of Dresden on Monday.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:02:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 ECONOMY & FINANCE 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:40:48 AM EST
Anguish of self-employed as 'liar-loans' face ban | Money | The Observer

Thousands of worried self-employed workers are pondering their chances of ever getting a mortgage after the Financial Services Authority last week proposed an end to self-certification.

These controversial loans, dubbed "liar loans", allowed borrowers to "self-declare" or "self-certify" their annual earnings. Originally designed for the self-employed and those who ran small businesses, they were abused by some who declared a higher income than they actually earned. This, in turn, led to some people taking out mortgages they could not afford.

Now the FSA has proposed banning them, although this is still under consultation until the end of January and any action might not be taken for a year.

The news was enough, however, to cause anguish among the growing number of self-employed workers, many of whom have only recently become their own boss following redundancy.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:57:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Funny how most of the noise about these is not coming from the self-employed organisations so much as the lenders who fear this as the thin end of the regulatory wedge.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:32:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Bank bosses should be held to account for PPI mis-selling, says consumer body | Business | The Observer

Bank bosses should face personal fines if their companies are found to have mis-sold insurance policies, according to the head of one of the UK's leading consumer-advocate bodies.

Adam Phillips, chairman of the Financial Services Consumer Panel (FSCP), said he wanted the most senior executives to be held to account by the Financial Services Authority.

He told the Observer: "I want to see more senior people, the heads of UK retail banking, sanctioned for mis-selling payment protection insurance [PPI]. At the moment the most senior person [to have been sanctioned] is the chief executive of Land of Leather."

If his view prevails, then the chief executives of the retail divisions of major banks such as Lloyds Banking Group, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland could face fines if their companies are found to have mis-sold plans.

PPI is designed to cover loan repayments if a borrower falls ill or loses their job. Sales of the policies are believed to earn lenders around £4bn a year.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:57:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
PPI is called PMI in the USA.  It is like a non-trivial tax on your monthly or semi-monthly mortgage payment. Getting rid of that parasite and getting a slightly lower rate was reason enough for a re-fi for us less than two years after purchasing our home in 1999. Of course the inflating real estate bubble had by then given us the requisite 20% equity in the house. Not much hope from that quarter in today's market.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:45:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Stop the fat-cat bonuses! George Soros turns on the bankers - Business News, Business - The Independent

British banks have just five working days to show they have "got it". On Saturday, they must submit to the regulator - the FSA - their planned bonus awards, widely estimated to total £6bn. Prince Andrew may have said in an interview that he regards this sum as "minute in the scheme of things", but, as the economy still falters and unemployment rises, it was clear last night that the banks will grant themselves their billions in an increasingly hostile atmosphere.

George Soros (below) became the latest high-profile figure from the world of finance to condemn the bankers, and call for watertight restrictions on their activities yesterday. He said: "Banks are actually getting hidden subsidies of enormous amounts because of their ability to borrow at effectively zero, and buy 10-year government bonds at 3.5 per cent. So those earnings are not the achievement of risk-takers. These are gifts, hidden gifts, from the Government, so I don't think those monies should be used to pay bonuses. So there's a resentment which I think is justified."

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:02:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Walker set to clamp down on bankers' pay - Business News, Business - The Independent

City grandee Sir David Walker will recommend banning banks from paying guaranteed bonuses to staff when he publishes his final review into corporate governance at the end of next month.

Sir David has decided to clamp down on bankers' pay because of a growing acceptance that huge salaries and bonuses may have exacerbated and contributed to the banking crisis. It is not clear whether he will propose banning one-year guaranteed bonuses - often known as "golden handshakes" as well as the multi-year payments.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:17:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Steve Keen was reminded of FDR recently, and of the more complete speech which we remember by the famous line: "We have nothing to fear but fear itself!":
I was reminded of this by a quote on program outline for the Green New Deal conference that I attended yesterday. Normally we only see the "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself" quote, but that program excerpted a rather more relevant observation of Roosevelt's on what had caused the Great Depression:

Yet our distress comes from no failure of substance. We are stricken by no plague of locusts. Compared with the perils which our forefathers conquered because they believed and were not afraid, we have still much to be thankful for. Nature still offers her bounty and human efforts have multiplied it. Plenty is at our doorstep, but a generous use of it languishes in the very sight of the supply. Primarily this is because the rulers of the exchange of mankind's goods have failed, through their own stubbornness and their own incompetence, have admitted their failure, and abdicated. Practices of the unscrupulous money changers stand indicted in the court of public opinion, rejected by the hearts and minds of men.

True they have tried, but their efforts have been cast in the pattern of an outworn tradition. Faced by failure of credit they have proposed only the lending of more money. Stripped of the lure of profit by which to induce our people to follow their false leadership, they have resorted to exhortations, pleading tearfully for restored confidence. They know only the rules of a generation of self-seekers. They have no vision, and when there is no vision the people perish.

The money changers have fled from their high seats in the temple of our civilization. We may now restore that temple to the ancient truths. The measure of the restoration lies in the extent to which we apply social values more noble than mere monetary profit. Bold by Steve Keen


Click for the entire speech.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 01:37:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Doomsday financial journalism at its best (or worst) Tom Petruno, LA Times

Paul Farrell at MarketWatch.com has written some pessimistic columns in the past, but his latest piece his latest piece is the be-all and end-all of doomsday financial journalism.

Take it from the headline: "20 reasons America has lost its soul and collapse is inevitable."

Whew. Farrell makes Michael Moore look like a font of hope.

The column, published last Tuesday, has been among MarketWatch's most-read features since then. Maybe it's just a coincidence, but Farrell preceded by two weeks Hollywood's newest attempt to depict the apocalypse, the film "2012," which will premiere Nov. 3.

Farrell basically believes the capitalists have destroyed capitalism for good, an understandably popular theme (including with Moore) since the financial system went on government life support a year ago. Farrell writes:

   A year ago, too-greedy-to-fail banks were insolvent, in a near-death experience. Now, magically, they're back to business as usual, arrogant, pocketing outrageous bonuses while Main Street sacrifices, and unemployment and foreclosures continue rising as tight credit, inflation and skyrocketing federal debt are killing taxpayers.

    Yes, Wall Street has lost its moral compass. It created the mess, but now, like vultures, Wall Streeters are capitalizing on the carcass. They have lost all sense of fiduciary duty, ethical responsibility and public obligation.



Well, Point 1 of Farrell's piece is indictment rather than reason but at least Tom put this article out to an audience beyond those who follow blogs. In his commentary, however, he seems to be burnishing his claims to be a "Serious Person."  Most of the points he makes will seem commonplace to many on ET.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 02:10:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
2009 Index

104 countries are rated for:

  • Economic fundamentals
  • Entrepreneurship and Innovation
  • Democratic institutions
  • Education
  • Health
  • Safety and security
  • Governance
  • Personal freedom
  • Social capital

In the 2009 Index, Finland comes first, followed by Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Australia, Canada and the Netherlands.

The USA is 8th, the UK 12th, France 17th, Italy 21st.

The Index is funded by Legatum Capital.

caveat follows...

wikip:

The Legatum Institute, the publisher of the index, is a privately-funded think-tank founded in 2007 and located in Mayfair, London. It is funded by Legatum Capital, a portfolio investment fund manager.

Personnel
The Prosperity Index is reviewed and critiqued (although not necessarily endorsed in toto) by an advisory panel of academics and scholars representing a range of disciplines and includes: Dr. Daniel Drezner (Tufts University); Dr. Peter Feaver (Duke University); Dr. Robert Jensen (University of California, Los Angeles); Dr. Stephen Krasner (Stanford University); Dr. Michael Kremer (Harvard University); Dr. Philip Levy (American Enterprise Institute); Dr. Edmund Malesky (University of California, San Diego); Dr. Ann Owen (Hamilton College); Dr. Robert Putnam (Harvard University).

One of the main authors of the 2007 report, Will Inboden, was a senior white-house official in the administration of George W. Bush.[3] Ryan Streeter, a senior fellow at the instute,[4], was the director of HUD's Center for Faith Based and Community Initiatives in the same administration.



You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 05:54:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 WORLD 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:41:13 AM EST
Two car bombs kill scores in downtown Baghdad | World news | guardian.co.uk

Two explosions ripped apart government buildings in Baghdad this morning for the second time in two months, killing at least 132, wounding 500 and demonstrating once again that insurgents maintain the capacity to mount large-scale attacks in the heart of the capital.

The blasts, one from a car bomb and the other possibly a truck bomb, targeted the justice ministry and the Baghdad governorate in central Baghdad. Both buildings are close to the foreign ministry and finance ministry, which were blown up in August, killing 132 people and wounding up to 600.

Security had been tightened sharply across Baghdad in the wake of the earlier blasts, which eroded confidence in the Iraqi government's security gains ahead of national elections in January. The explosion at the governorate was about 500 metres from the site of the foreign ministry blast.

Dozens of people remained trapped in the wreckage of the two buildings, with emergency crews unable to reach them through tonnes of destroyed masonry and shattered glass. The bombs detonated within seconds of each other shortly after 10.30am. Displaced families queueing for compensation in the wake of the sectarian war were among the victims of the governorate attack. Justice ministry employees, including a large number of judges and lawyers, appeared to make up the bulk of the victims at the second site.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:44:03 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Baghdad bombs kill 132 | World | Reuters

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Two suicide bombs tore through Baghdad on Sunday, killing 132 people, wounding more than 500 and leaving mangled bodies and cars on the streets in one of Iraq's deadliest days this year.

The two blasts shredded buildings and smoke billowed from the area near the Tigris River. The first bomb targeted the Justice Ministry and the second, minutes later, was aimed at the nearby provincial government building, police said.

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's office said that the bombs were meant to sow chaos in Iraq similar to attacks on August 19 against the finance and foreign ministries, and were aimed at stopping an election in January.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:19:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, by the numbers | Stripes Blogs
At the House Armed Services Committee this morning, Pentagon officials briefed Congress on the status of the planned withdrawal of American forces from Iraq. So far so good, according to Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy.

Barring a major setback with the elections in January or a deterioration of security, the military's plan for removing nearly two-thirds of the troops still in Iraq over the next year should proceed without any problems. Lawmakers called that good news, but ... assurances ... wary ... will return home.

... paint an interesting picture ... how massive a project moving out of Iraq will be:

-- In January, the U.S. had about 143,500 troops in Iraq. Today, that number is down under 120,000.

Wow~! Holy Lingering Batforces - a 23,000 person reduction in 10 months. Where is my freaking Peace Benefit Check???

-- By next January the number of U.S. troops is scheduled to drop to around 100,000, and to 50,000 by September.


No~! Please don't tell me that there will be a complete 'nother 20,000 troop reduction in the next 3 months?!?!?! Won't that put us at risk over here?

-- The number of U.S. contractors has dropped by 35,000 in the last nine moths, and should drop to around 75,000 by the end of summer 2010.


Well, that doesn't quite give an honest view of the numbers, does it? Except to acknowledge that our tax dollars will be paying for more U.S.Contractors than obvious military forces. Kinda sweet, in a cold war kinda way, no? Still, 50,000 here and 70,000 there, that sure sounds like over a 120,000 Americans with jobs. Way to go!!!

-- The U.S. still has about 3.3 million pieces of equipment in Iraq, ranging from massive MRAPs to ammo clips.

War - The New Peace

Never underestimate their intelligence, always underestimate their knowledge.

Frank Delaney ~ Ireland

by siegestate (siegestate or beyondwarispeace.com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:38:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Female empowerment: How women are changing the face of Japanese politics | World news | guardian.co.uk

Five years ago, Eriko Fukuda could have been forgiven for thinking that life had dealt her a poor hand. She had already abandoned her university studies two years earlier after discovering that she had been infected with hepatitis C as a baby, via a tainted blood-clotting agent. The side effects of her regimen of drugs and injections left her feeling weak and nauseous. For 18 months, she could do little except hope that the treatment would send the virus into retreat.

When Japan's parliament reconvenes tomorrow , the now-healthy 28-year-old will be among the most visible faces of the political upheaval that swept the Democratic party of Japan (DPJ) into office in August, ending 54 years of almost uninterrupted rule by the Liberal Democratic party (LDP).

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:51:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Pakistani soldiers take Taliban stronghold - Asia, World - The Independent

Pakistani soldiers captured the hometown of the country's Taliban chief yesterday in a breakthrough in their eight-day-old air and ground offensive in South Waziristan. An army spokesman claimed the Taliban was in disarray, with many deserting its ranks.

Kotkai town, home of the Pakistani Taliban chief, Hakimullah Mehsud, and one of his top deputies, Qari Hussain, lies along the way to the militant base of Sararogha, making it a strategically helpful catch. Most of its homes were turned into "strong bunkers" and it also hosts a suicide-bomber training camp.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:06:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Iran arrests 12 accused of promoting satanism - Middle East, World - The Independent

Twelve people accused of promoting satanism have been arrested in northwest Iran, a newspaper reported today.

"A number of people in the city of Orumiyeh who engaged in the promotion of satanism through underground music and the production of blasphemous video clips were arrested," the daily Resalat quoted senior police official Kheibar Tiba as saying.

The socially conservative Islamic Republic said last year it would crack down on "indecent Western-inspired movements" such as rappers and satanists.

That move signalled a widening of a clampdown on "immoral" conduct launched in 2007 against women flouting rules dictating that they cover their heads and disguise the shape of their bodies in public, in line with Iran's Islamic system.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:07:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
U.N. experts inspect Iran's new nuclear site | World | Reuters

TEHRAN (Reuters) - A team from the U.N. nuclear watchdog inspected a nuclear site in Iran on Sunday that has heightened Western fears of a covert programme to develop atomic bombs, the semi-official Mehr news agency reported.

Iran added to global concerns over its nuclear intentions in September by revealing the existence of the site in central Iran after Western spy services penetrated a three-year veil of secrecy.

"The inspectors ... visited the facility in central Iran. They are expected to visit the site again," Mehr reported, without giving a source.

There was no immediate confirmation from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The IAEA inspectors arrived in Iran early on Sunday to examine the site, under construction 160 km (100 miles) south of Tehran.

Refined uranium can be used to fuel nuclear power plants and also to provide material for bombs if enriched further.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:20:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Iran voices doubts about nuclear deal as UN inspectors arrive | World | Deutsche Welle | 25.10.2009

While western powers have signed off on a deal that would produce nuclear fuel for Tehran from its own partly enriched uranium, top Iranian lawmakers are criticizing the deal saying that Western powers are trying to take advantage of Iran.

"They insist on going in a direction that speaks of cheating. They are imposing some things on Iran," Larijani told ISNA, the student news agency.

His comments echoed those of officials who suggested that instead of accepting the UN draft proposal, Iran should just buy nuclear fuel from abroad.

However, the deal in its present form is essentially what Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad proposed nearly two months ago, saying the country needed 19.75-percent enriched uranium.

"We propose to buy it from anybody who is ready to sell it to us. We are ready to give 3.5-percent enriched uranium and then they can enrich it more and deliver to us 19.75-percent enriched uranium," said Ahmadinejad on September 30.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:30:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Death toll in Egypt train crash reaches 18-agency | World | Reuters

CAIRO (Reuters) - The death toll from a train crash south of Cairo has reached 18, the Health Ministry said on Sunday, a day after the two Egyptian passenger trains collided.

The ministry, in a statement carried by the official Middle East News Agency (MENA), said 39 people were also injured in the accident on Saturday evening but said 12 of those had already been discharged from hospital.

A first class train, filled with passengers, rammed into a mostly empty stationary train on the same track, security sources said.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:20:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Cairo seeks maximum penalty for man accused of killing Egyptian woman | Germany | Deutsche Welle | 25.10.2009
Cairo is seeking a life sentence for a man set to go on trial Monday in Dresden for stabbing to death an Egyptian woman in a courthouse. The case fueled anger against Germany in the Muslim world.  

The Egyptian foreign ministry said in a statement issued on Sunday that the government in Cairo had hired a team of senior German lawyers to defend the interests of the deceased woman's family and to secure the maximum penalty allowed by German law.

The ministry said Egypt had faith in the independence of the German legal system and its ability to ensure justice for the family of the deceased.

The trial begins on Monday in Dresden in the same courthouse that Alex W. stabbed and killed 31-year-old Marwa al-Shirbini on July 1 this year.

The 28-year-old defendant, who was born in Russia, stands accused of murder, attempted murder and dangerous bodily harm.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:31:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC NEWS | World | Middle East | Arrests at holy site in Jerusalem

Israeli police and Palestinian worshippers have clashed at Jerusalem's most sensitive religious site.

Police arrested 12 people who were throwing stones in the Temple Mount compound, known to Muslims as Haram al-Sharif, a police spokesman said.

The site houses both the al-Aqsa mosque and the Jewish holy site, the Western Wall. A spokesman said police did not enter the al-Aqsa mosque itself.

The clashes came amid rising tensions in the past weeks over the area.

On Saturday, Jerusalem police announced they would strengthen policing around the Temple Mount after Muslim leaders urged Palestinians to defend Jerusalem against "Jewish conquest."

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:34:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
AFGHANISTAN: NATO Members in Waiting Mode - IPS ipsnews.net
BRATISLAVA, Oct 25 (IPS) - Corruption, doubts over Afghan leadership, and faltering public support have emerged as the main stumbling blocks to a demand for more NATO troops in Afghanistan.

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) secretary-general Anders Fogh Rasmussen had wanted NATO defence ministers meeting in Bratislava Thursday and Friday this week to agree to raise troop numbers in Afghanistan. The U.S. and NATO troops commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, has asked for 40,000 more troops.

Rasmussen made energetic appeals to NATO states to endorse the general's plan, which also calls for a shift in strategy to do more to protect the Afghan population, and to train local forces and police.

At the end of the meeting Rasmussen said defence ministers had given their broad support for the McChrystal report. But it was clear that there would be no commitment from most European countries to send more troops while doubts remain over Afghan President Hamid Karzai's regime.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:05:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
RALEIGH, USA -- Environmental Defense Fund will send a team of experts to Havana, Cuba, on Sunday to discuss ways to eliminate overfishing, protect coral reefs, conserve coastal areas, and tap potential ocean energy - a signal that greater environmental cooperation may be on the horizon.

EDF scientists and policy experts and Cuban scientists and environmental officials will have a series of meetings about how the United States and Cuba can work together to protect ocean waters and marine resources shared by the two countries. The meetings come on the heels of a September visit to the United States by Cuban environmental officials.



"Beware of the man who does not talk, and the dog that does not bark." Cheyenne
by maracatu on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 09:05:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 LIVING OFF THE PLANET 
 Environment, Energy, Agriculture, Food 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:41:41 AM EST
Who says it's green to burn woodchips? - Green Living, Environment - The Independent

One of the most cherished articles of faith of the green movement - that wood-fuelled power stations can help save the planet - is being increasingly challenged by campaigners and conservationists around the world.

Electricity generated by burning woodchips is on the verge of a global boom. America is planning 102 power stations fuelled by woodchips in the next few years. Europe is reported to be planning a similar, if yet unquantified, expansion. And in Britain, the next three years will see wood-fuelled power station capacity increase sevenfold, requiring, according to the campaign group Biofuelwatch, so much timber that it would need an area 12 times the size of Liechtenstein to grow it.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:05:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Use renewable bioresources, such as olive pomace. Kcal/Kg, it beats wood by a long shot.
by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 06:37:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Back of the envelope:  Italy consumes about 16 billion KW-Hrs of electricity generated from "other" sources, (not hydro or nuclear).

Based on assuming 1KG of pomace/ 1KG of consumed olive oil and olive oil consumption of 12Kg/pop  12Kg/pop X 58 million pop = about 700 million KG/yr. of olive pomace = 700,000 tons/yr of pomace oil.

At 12,000 KW-hrs/ton of oil X 700,000 tons = 8.4 billion Kw-Hrs/year from olive pomace.  That is about half of the "other" electrical production, potentially.

How does the price of a ton of olive pomace compare to that of a ton of oil?    

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 01:15:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Most pomace is presently recycled as a natural fertilizer in Italy- or simply trashed. At the moment the use of pomace as a fuel is in the preliminary stage. In fact some internet sites declare that the entire production for 2009-2010 is already exhausted by a demand that far excedes present production capabilities.

With that very long intro, the answer is that I don't know the price as today and it does not reflect future capacities. Olive pomace is currently used in the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean as a standard domestic fuel.

Pomace from other coltivars or fruits could also be use.

by de Gondi (publiobestia aaaatttthotmaildaughtusual) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 01:58:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sounds like most of the pomace reuse is non-monetary in nature.  Two question occur:

  1. What would be a good market price for pomace as a feedstock for electrical power generation. I.e., what is the composition of the "other" sources and what are their costs?

  2. What would be the cost of replacing the current uses as and agricultural fertilizer, INCLUDING EXTERNALITIES?

It would seem to be a win to substitute pomace for coal, under almost any scenario. And it would seem that conversion of coal fired generators to pomace would be relatively straightforward. Then all that would be required would be for some of B's cronies to make out big time on the conversion.  

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 02:25:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
An area twelve times the size of Liechtenstein?  So, is twelve times a postage stamp more or less than the size of an envelope?

More seriously, aren't woodchips produced as a by-product of most wood milling and procession operations anyway?  I'm not saying they're great or anything, but up to a certain point this does seem sort of like a kind of re-cycling.  

by Zwackus on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 08:12:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The real climate change catastrophe - Telegraph

Next Thursday marks the first anniversary of one of the most remarkable events ever to take place in the House of Commons. For six hours MPs debated what was far and away the most expensive piece of legislation ever put before Parliament.

The Climate Change Bill laid down that, by 2050, the British people must cut their emissions of carbon dioxide by well over 80 per cent. Short of some unimaginable technological revolution, such a target could not possibly be achieved without shutting down almost the whole of our industrialised economy, changing our way of life out of recognition.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:24:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Short of some unimaginable technological revolution...

Such as wind, tide and solar derived energy?  What can't be imagined won't be done.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:57:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
BBC NEWS | Science & Environment | 'Freezer plan' bid to save coral

The prospects of saving the world's coral reefs now appear so bleak that plans are being made to freeze samples to preserve them for the future.

A meeting in Denmark took evidence from researchers that most coral reefs will not survive even if tough regulations on greenhouse gases are put in place.

Scientists proposed storing samples of coral species in liquid nitrogen.

That will allow them to be reintroduced to the seas in the future if global temperatures can be stabilised.

Legislators from 16 major economies have been meeting in the Danish capital, Copenhagen, to try and agree the way forward on climate change.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:36:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
MIDEAST: 'France, U.S. Pushing Arabs Into Nuclear Race' - IPS ipsnews.net
ISTANBUL, Oct 25 (IPS) - The decision by the oil-rich United Arab Emirates to build nuclear reactors has unleashed frenetic, politically backed competition between giant corporations from France, the U.S., Japan and South Korea to win contracts estimated at more than 40 billion dollars.

This may lead to a nuclear race involving other Gulf Arab states.

UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan signed a new law Oct. 4 to regulate production and development of nuclear energy in the federation of seven emirates that he chairs.

UAE authorities were quick to announce that the nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes. "The UAE's nuclear programme is a peaceful project based on its commitment not to enrich uranium, and its ability to achieve the necessary degree of fuel security through a strong infrastructure," UAE special representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Hamad Al-Kaabi told reporters.

Kaabi said the UAE has set up a Federal Authority of Nuclear Regulation to promote safety, security and radiological protection, with former IAEA technical adviser William Travers as director-general.

He declined to say how many reactors the UAE intends to build. The UAE nuclear plants are scheduled to be operational in 2017.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:07:24 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Electric vehicles are charging up the automotive industry  
By Ken Bensinger  LA Times

A dozen all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles are expected to hit the market in the next three years. They promise to combine blinding fuel efficiency, radical new technology and futuristic styling.

Although Nissan will start mainly with fleet sales, a few all-electric Leafs (Leaves?) will be available to individuals before a larger rollout in 2012. Nissan hopes to eventually build this relatively low-cost entrant in Tennessee. (Itsuo Inouye / Associated Press)

Next time you're filling up the cavernous fuel tank of the gas-gulping family jalopy, imagine getting 230 miles per gallon. Better yet, how about never buying another gallon of gas? After years of hope and hype, electron-powered driving finally appears to be on the verge of reality.

In the next three years, at least a dozen pure electric or plug-in hybrid cars are slated to hit the market in the U.S. Electricity-driven vehicles from giants such as General Motors Co. and Nissan Motor Co., as well as start-ups like Fisker Automotive Inc. in Irvine, will provide consumers with a wide variety of choices. These new vehicles promise to combine blinding fuel efficiency, radical new technology and futuristic styling that makes the hybrid Toyota Prius look downright staid. Battery makers and automakers alike are tooling up factories to produce big volumes of electric vehicles. Meanwhile, power utilities and regulators are scrambling to figure out just how big the market will be.

"This is happening and it's happening soon," said Mark Duvall, director of electric transportation at the Electric Power Research Institute, an independent, nonprofit research group. "By the end of 2011, consumers will have more choices in vehicles they can plug in than they currently do for hybrids."

The electric vehicles will be arriving at a good time. With gasoline prices creeping up once again and federal regulations calling for huge fuel economy gains in the next half-decade, there's increasing demand for cars that burn less fuel, make less noise and push automotive technology forward.



"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 01:50:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 LIVING ON THE PLANET 
 Society, Culture, History, Information 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:42:04 AM EST
Who's not using the internet? | Technology | The Observer

Do you remember your first time - the trepidation, the expectation, the rite of passage? Mine was in 1997 - "things can only get better" - opening up the heavy black Mac Powerbook I'd just unwrapped, going through the unintelligible process of account creation with a patient BT support desk, plugging in various fat cables and listening as the dial-up connection went through its slow motions: the little digital jingle of the phone number and then the long expectant screech and babble of static as your machine attempted to connect, an electric chatter in which I could imagine - that first time - I heard all the world's voices talking to one another, the ultimate party line. It was, I guess, the closest most of my generation came to tuning in and turning on. This was seven years before Facebook, eight before YouTube. Amazon was still a river in south America, Google was an unlikely logarithm in the minds of Sergey Brin and Larry Page, which they were then thinking of calling "BackRub".

In the dozen years since - can that really be all it is? - it has become harder and harder to imagine the world without the internet. It fast became our marketplace and our playground, our library and our collective memory. Sitting here, in front of my screen, as usual, I find it genuinely difficult to imagine my own pre-1997, pre-keypad world. What on earth did I do with my time?

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:49:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ending the silence on 'honour killing' | Society | The Observer
Ending the silence on 'honour killing'

The number of young women - and men - being killed or assaulted after supposedly bringing shame on their families keeps on rising. But more than ever before, those who have escaped violence are speaking out to break the code of silence. Old attitudes of accepting the crimes in the name of cultural sensitivity have also disappeared and the police are targeting the abusers.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:00:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Modern man had sex with Neanderthals - Telegraph

Professor Paabo, who is director of genetics at the renowned Max Planck Institution for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, made the claim at a conference in the Cold Springs Laboratory in New York.

But Prof Paabo said he was unclear if the couplings had led to children, of if they were capable of producing offspring.

"What I'm really interested in is, did we have children back then and did those children contribute to our variation today?" he said in an article in The Sunday Times.

"I'm sure that they had sex, but did it give offspring that contributed to us? We will be able to answer quite vigorously with the new [Neanderthal genome] sequence."

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:25:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Modern man will screw anything, but all that far back into prehistory is a bit of a... stretch.

<sorry>

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:37:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, I thought that.  They know this how exactly?  They have a time machine?
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:57:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
(Doctor) Whodunnit.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 03:44:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
From the article:

In recent years, fossils with both Neanderthal and modern human features have been found suggesting the two species interbred
...
Prof Paabo is seeking to prove his theory by examining Neanderthal fossils for traces of modern man's DNA.



Maybe it's because I'm a Londoner - that I moved to Nice.
by Ted Welch (tedwelch-at-mac-dot-com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 05:03:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, given the opportunity, wild male orangutans will forceably mate with human females, and then there is human sex with sheep, etc.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 02:31:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
and their descendants, with obviously diminished intellgence, are still to be found living amongst us, writing articles for the Telegraph

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:36:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Asteroids should be next small step for man in space, panel tells President Barack Obama - Telegraph

Even as a rocket designed to help carry astronauts back to the Moon awaits take-off in Florida this week, asteroids have been singled out as the favoured destination for man's return to outer space.

An expert panel appointed by President Barack Obama to assess America's future spaceflight programme last week recommended bypassing the Moon in favour of a mission that sounds as if it is straight out of science-fiction.

The target would be an as yet-unidentified asteroid - one of the countless ancient pieces of debris from the dawn of the solar system that still circle the sun. It might measure just 500 yards across, with a surface area no greater than the Vatican City.

That stop would be a stepping stone towards the ultimate goal of landing a man on Mars, the report suggested. But to achieve any such ambition, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) will need an extra $3 billion a year, on top of the $99 billion budgeted for the next decade, the panel warned.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 12:27:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yawny-Graph:
It might measure just 500 yards across, with a surface area no greater than the Vatican City.

Oh, the irony.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:15:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
RIGHTS-UGANDA: Female Circumcision Still a Vote Winner - IPS ipsnews.net
it has turned out to be a long, hard battle to change an age-old tradition that involves the total removal of the clitoris and scraping of the female private parts.

In fact, even those in positions of power are finding it difficult to change the culture of mutilation against young girls. While earlier this year President Yoweri Museveni condemned the practice, his government has been slow to pass a total ban on female circumcision, partly because his party needs the votes of those who largely support the practice.

The strength of the voters is especially evident in communities where female circumcision is a wide-spread practice. Here, women who have not been mutilated have difficulty being elected and some have lost elections because of their anti- female genital mutilation campaign.

Jane Frances Kuka, the former Gender Minister and former woman Member of Parliament (MP) for Kapchorwa district, an area that has laws banning female circumcision, lost her parliamentary seat partly for having campaigned against female genital mutilation.

"My opponents used my stand against female genital mutilation as a weapon against me. Elders were saying who is this (she) to interfere with our culture?" she says.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 03:12:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Doth I protest too much? | Mark Thomas | Comment is free | The Guardian
I was sent the now notorious "police spotter card" through the post. It's an official laminated card for "police eyes only" and labelled as coming from "CO11 Public Order Intelligence Unit". The card contained the photographs of 24 anti-arms trade protesters, unnamed but lettered A to X. My picture appeared as photo H. You can imagine my reaction at finding I was the subject of a secret police surveillance process ... I was delighted. I phoned my agent and told him I was suspect H. He replied: "Next year we'll get you top billing ... suspect A."


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:26:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How police rebranded lawful protest as 'domestic extremism' | UK news | The Guardian

As demonstrations go, it was more of a lighthearted affair than a threat to the nation.

About 600 climate change campaigners had gathered outside the Drax power station in North Yorkshire. They had chosen to demonstrate there because the huge plant is the UK's biggest emitter of carbon. The protesters were mainly families with young children, accompanied by clowns, cyclists, baton twirlers and, according to some reports, a giant ostrich puppet.

It was not completely without incident. Two protesters climbed a lighting pylon at the edge of the site and four others broke through the fence. About 30 others were arrested for public order offences.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 10:42:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What he didn't say was the extent to which the even then limited right of protest we had, say, 30 years ago, has been incresingly restricted and diminished under successive govts. Each step a supposedly reasonable salami slice curtailing this or that aspect of our freedom to dissent. But now the very act of protest has been constrained so much, that raising a voice in dissent is tantamount to sedition.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:41:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I once commented to my company's tax accountant that I had done my own taxes and never been audited.  He responded: "You haven't been trying hard enought!" Perhaps that is your problem.  :-)

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 02:35:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Advertising - Newspapers May Face Ad Difficulties on Web Sites, Too - NYTimes.com
It was a good day for newspaper Web sites when Mercedes-Benz USA introduced its updated E-Class cars this summer. Mercedes bought out the ad space on the home pages of The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, and had those sites create special 3-D ads for them, at an estimated cost of $100,000 a site.

The days after were not as good. While Mercedes was happy with the newspaper sites' performance, it shifted money to cheaper, more tightly aimed ads bought through networks, which bundle ad space from many Web sites.

When Mercedes advertises its more basic models next year, it will largely avoid newspaper Web sites and rely on networks. That lets Mercedes "be very targeted and efficient with our dollars," said Beth Lange, digital media specialist for Mercedes-Benz USA



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 10:10:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
'Crash' Director Paul Haggis Ditches Scientology - New York News - Runnin' Scared

Over the past few days, a remarkable letter was published in four parts at the blog of Marty Rathbun, a former high-level Scientology official who has left the church and now criticizes Scientology's leader, David Miscavige.

In the letter, written to Scientology's current national spokesman, Tommy Davis, 'Crash' director Paul Haggis explains why he is leaving Scientology after 35 years.

Long known for his humanitarian efforts and strong support for civil liberties, Haggis says he was stunned when the San Diego branch of Scientology publicly supported Proposition 8, the state amendment that took away marriage rights for California gay couples.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 10:28:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Emptywheel » Prosecutors Attack Innocence Project Journalism Students

Cook County Illinois is the gift that keeps on giving. From the aggressive G-Men of the Roaring Twenties to the Red Squads to the original Richard Daley Machine to the Burge Torture Scandals, Chicago and Cook County have a certain reputation for political corruption, police brutality and and prosecutorial misconduct.

A new chapter in heavy handedness has been penned with the current tactics of the Cook County Attorney's Office taken against Northwestern University journalism students participating in the Medill Innocence Project. From today's New York Times:



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 10:44:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The unwritten part of the Constitution : Thou shalt not embarrass the authorities.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:41:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maurice Sendak tells parents worried by Wild Things to 'go to hell' | Books | guardian.co.uk
Parents who think the new film of Maurice Sendak's picture book Where the Wild Things Are is too frightening for children can "go to hell", the author has 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 Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:09:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, Where the Wild Things Are...

I'm going to leave aside any discussion of the pertinence of the wording of the reply he made ;-)

I have a special story with that book. It was presented to me as a child (probably around the age of 5 or 6), as "Max et les Maximonstres", its French title. It was early 80s in any case, and the book was some classic.

I read it. Then I put it aside and said I did not want to see it ever again.

I have, of course, seen it since. I must admit that it is a beautifully drawn book and has a meaningful story. Yet I violently rejected it. What was it that made me do so? The idea that a boy could be "rewarded" for naugtiness in that it made him king for a while? Max' desire to appear as a monster? Or, since my parents were fighting then, could it be that I couldn't stand the idea of leaving a non-fighting family to join a violent place? Was I rejecting children's books in general?
Or maybe the book is simply too true, and I was already suffering from my recurring despair over the nature of men.

My parents do not know why I rejected the book, but they remember the violence with which I did so.
Did any of you experience any rejection of the book? I'd be interested to know how others felt about it.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's need, but not every man's greed. Gandhi

by Cyrille (cyrillev domain yahoo.fr) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:00:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The E&P Pub

The latest FAS-FAX for the six months ending Sept. 30 is here in a matter of moments and some numbers are already trickling out.  We already know about the massive 17% drop at USA Today and now there's this:Compared to the same six-month period ending September 2008, daily (Monday-Friday) circulation at The New York Times is down 7.2% to 927,851.   Sunday fell 2.6% to 1,400,302.

Los Angeles Times reported daily is off 11% to 657,467 and 6.7% on Sunday to 983,702.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:23:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
 PEOPLE AND KLATSCH 

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 11:42:37 AM EST
Army to phase in tan-colored Stryker vehicles | Stars and Stripes
ZABUL PROVINCE, Afghanistan -- More than six years after sending the first Stryker armored vehicles into desert combat, the Army has decided that it's probably a good idea to start painting them tan so they will blend in with the environments in Afghanistan and Iraq

<snip>

Over the years, there's been no satisfactory answer for the difference. The Army and its contracting agencies have been talking about changing the color of the Strykers since 2004, according to Butts, "but nothing firm was planned out until now."

<snip>

Soldiers in the field will not be authorized to repaint the Strykers themselves. That can only be done in authorized facilities in Qatar, if the vehicles are sent back for repairs and retrofit, said Butts.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Oct 25th, 2009 at 05:52:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Bloody typical.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:42:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Dutch popular magazine "Natuurwetenschap& Techniek" has released a a press release (in Dutch) announcing that for their November issue, mathematicians have re-calculated the Mayan calendar and they show that the Mayan end date is only in 2220, and not December 2012.

Damn it.

Another 200 years of bullshit...

by Nomad on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 06:28:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sexist violence sickens crime critic | Books | The Observer

Crime fiction has become so violently and graphically anti-women that one of the country's leading crime writers and critics is refusing to review new books.

Jessica Mann, an award-winning author who reviews crime fiction for the Literary Review, has said that an increasing proportion of the books she is sent to review feature male perpetrators and female victims in situations of "sadistic misogyny". "Each psychopath is more sadistic than the last and his victims' sufferings are described in detail that becomes ever more explicit, as young women are imprisoned, bound, gagged, strung up or tied down, raped, sliced, burned, blinded, beaten, eaten, starved, suffocated, stabbed, boiled or buried alive," she said.

"Authors must be free to write and publishers to publish. But critics must be free to say they have had enough. So however many more outpourings of sadistic misogyny are crammed on to the bandwagon, no more of them will be reviewed by me," said Mann, who has written her own bestselling series of crime novels and a non-fiction book about female crime writers.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 07:05:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I've noticed this for a while. I never buy the stuff, but I get free copies every so often.

Apparently most of the readers are women, which is even stranger.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Oct 26th, 2009 at 09:31:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]


Display:
Go to: [ European Tribune Homepage : Top of page : Top of comments ]