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European Salon de News, Discussion et Klatsch - 8 July

by Fran Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 04:39:57 PM EST

 A Daily Review Of International Online Media 


Europeans on this date in history:

1933 – Birth of Marty Feldman, an English comedy writer, comedian and actor who starred in a series of British television comedy shows, including At Last the 1948 Show, and Marty which won two BAFTA awards. (d. 1982)

More here and here

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by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:09:33 AM EST
Swiss Knives Out for Migrants - IPS ipsnews.net
BERN, Jul 6, 2010 (IPS) - The disputed 'black sheep' placards may soon return to Swiss streets. The country's Federal Council and parliament have validated a right-wing initiative calling for the automatic deportation of criminal foreigners.

Foreigners make up almost 22 per cent of the country's 7.8 million inhabitants. These include people of European origin. Campaigns against foreign residents have become regular to Switzerland.

In 2008, the right-wing Swiss People's Party (SVP) handed in an initiative demanding automatic expulsion of foreign criminals. The list of covered crimes includes rape, murder, robbery, drug-dealing, burglary and betrayal of the social insurance system.

The SVP launched the initiative in 2007, only a few months ahead of national elections. Its campaign mainly built on a controversial banner depicting a black sheep being kicked out of the country, accompanied by the words "Establish security".
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:19:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Would that include French-born film director, producer, writer and actors?
by njh on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 07:32:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Anything-born, as I read it.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 02:22:19 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EU countries 'dragging their feet' on bank supervision | EurActiv
Plans to set up new European supervisors of banks have been put on the back-burner as member states continue to haggle over a litany of reforms which would see Brussels have more influence over the way banking is carried out in the EU. 

 Talks that ended at 1am on Monday night were deemed "a complete waste of time" by some MEPs, who accused EU member states of "dragging their feet" on a series of reforms that would allow Brussels-based supervisors to oversee, and in some cases overrule, their national counterparts.

As a result, the European Parliament has agreed to postpone today's planned vote on a package of reforms to establish the new EU supervisors to September as question marks hang over whether member states and MEPs will be able to broker a workable compromise.

Instead, MEPs will today vote on a smaller set of amendments on financial supervision, with a separate vote on bank capital requirements and bonuses forecast to go through with minimal debate

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:21:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Parliament to back new EU-US data-sharing deal | EurActiv
The European Parliament is tomorrow (8 July) expected to rubber-stamp a revised EU-US agreement on bank data-sharing, called 'SWIFT', that is set to give significant new powers of oversight to US anti-terror investigators. Some MEPs feel, however, that the ongoing saga represents "misuse" of parliamentary power.

 The vote, expected to be carried by a large majority, will draw to a close one of the most heated debates of 2010.

The new deal, struck earlier this week (5 July), was backed by a clear majority of MEPs on the Parliament's justice and home affairs committee, who said earlier concerns over the protection of citizens' privacy had been met.

An earlier version of the agreement had been rejected by MEPs in February, forcing EU countries and the European Commission to renegotiate a deal with the US authorities (see 'Background').

The only major parliamentary group still opposing the new deal are the European Greens, who made a last-ditch attempt to sway their fellow MEPs yesterday (6 July)

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:22:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EUobserver / MEPs look to new data protection battle with US

EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - After having forced extra privacy provisions into an EU-US deal on bank data snoops, the European Parliament is bracing itself for an even tougher battle on US access to personal information on air passengers.

The EU parliament came to prominence in February when it used its new Lisbon Treaty powers to veto international agreements involving transfers of data by striking down the so-called Swift deal.

The Swift pact - which allows US agents to sift EU bank data for evidence of terrorist financing - is now expected to pass a second vote on Thursday (8 July) with no problems after the EU commission inserted extra privacy provisions.

But an upcoming vote on the "Passenger Name Record" (PNR) scheme, which obliges every airline flying into or via the US to hand in all personal data on its passengers, is likely to prove tricky.

"The vote on the PNR will be more difficult, because our objections are stronger," Dutch Liberal MEP Sophie in't Veld, the parliament's rapporteur on PNR, told Euobserver after returning from an "exploratory" visit to the US last week.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:32:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Parliament mellows on EU diplomatic service | EurActiv
The European External Action Service (EEAS) is to become official after the summer recess and start recruiting in autumn, it became clear after a key European Parliament committee gave its green light yesterday (6 July) to the EU's diplomatic service.

Two weeks after the Madrid deal on the EEAS was struck (see 'Background'), recommendations on its organisation and working methods, set out in a text by Elmar Brok (European People's Party, Germany) were approved by the Parliament's foreign affairs committee.

Under the most optimistic scenario, the European Parliament could have given its final blessing to the EEAS at its current plenary session, which ends on Thursday. However, as leading MEPs explained, more time proved to be needed for the political groups to digest the Madrid compromise.

Parliament's negotiators Elmar Brok, Guy Verhofstadt (ALDE, Belgium) and Roberto Gualtieri (S&D, Italy) said that on the whole, Parliament's requests had been fulfilled.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:23:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EUobserver / EU-Chinese 'misunderstanding' on the rise, senior Beijing official warns

EUOBSERVER / STRASBOURG - China's deputy foreign minister has warned that the level of "misunderstanding" between Brussels and Beijing is on the rise, despite the EU's new architectural framework, designed in part to improve the bloc's dialogue with the international community.

Ms Fu Ying made the comments in an interview with EUobserver in Strasbourg on Tuesday (6 July), ahead of a series of meetings with senior European Parliament officials.

"I think the misunderstanding is strong on the European side and is growing on the Chinese side as well," said Ms Fu, whose portfolio includes handling her country's relations with Europe and Taiwan.

"Since 2008, the perceived China-bashing sentiment of European countries has hurt China and Chinese people," explained Beijing's most senior female official, whose previous positions include three years as ambassador to the UK.

And while China hopes for an improvement under the Lisbon Treaty, the EU's new rulebook that creates a stronger foreign policy supremo in the shape of Catherine Ashton, so far there has been little tangible evidence of change.

"I'm not saying the new position is not working, it [simply] hasn't started very much yet," said Ms Fu of the seven-month old post, conceding that she has never spoken to Ms Ashton over the phone to discuss bilateral issues.

 
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:31:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
7-Year Sentence in France for Noriega - NYTimes.com

PARIS (AP) -- A Paris court on Wednesday convicted former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega of laundering drug money in France in the 1980s and ordered him to spend seven years behind bars -- a sentence that comes on top of his two decades already spent in a U.S. prison.

The three-judge panel also ordered the seizure of euro2.3 million ($2.89 million) that has long been frozen in Noriega's accounts.

It's a new defeat for the longtime strongman and CIA asset, who was accused of joining forces with drug traffickers -- but his lawyers hope it may be a brief one, and predict he could be eligible for parole within a year.

His lawyers were deciding whether to appeal, and have 10 days to do so.

Noriega, who gives his age as 76, was deposed after a 1989 U.S. invasion and went on to serve 20 years in a Florida prison for drug trafficking. He was extradited to France in April to stand trial on accusations related to his assets here.



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:17:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Gay asylum seekers win protection from deportation | UK news | guardian.co.uk

Gay and lesbian asylum seekers have won the right not to be deported from the UK if they would be persecuted in their home countries.

The supreme court unanimously allowed appeals from two men, from Cameroon and Iran, whose claims had earlier been turned down because officials said they could hide their sexuality by behaving discreetly.

The government accepted the ruling and said that policy on gay and lesbian asylum seekers would be changed with immediate effect.

Lord Hope, heading the panel of five judges, said that to force a gay man to pretend his sexuality did not exist or should be suppressed was a breach of his fundamental rights. The court also laid down a framework on how asylum claims by gay and lesbian people should be determined.

The ruling was welcomed by the home secretary, Theresa May, and equality campaigners. May said: "We have already promised to stop the removal of asylum seekers who have had to leave particular countries because their sexual orientation or gender identification puts them at proven risk of imprisonment, torture or execution.



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:20:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:10:05 AM EST
Breakup of single currency 'would plunge eurozone into deep recession' | Business | The Guardian

January 2012. A cold winter has settled across Europe while the hard freeze gripping the economies of countries that once made up the eurozone is spreading across the globe.

European Monetary Union is over. The stresses and strains caused by the bailout of Greece and the problems that enveloped other peripheral countries has made the euro a distant memory.

This is the scenario explored by economists at Dutch bank ING who have produced one of the first financial models of what might happen if the single currency falls apart during 2010. In a bleak assessment, entitled "quantifying the unthinkable", they warn that in the first year alone, so by the start of 2012, output would fall between 5% and 9% across various member states, while their new national currencies would fall by 50%.

The 16 countries that ditched their own currencies a little over a decade earlier have dusted down the printing presses to try to introduce new domestic notes again. They are doing battle with a crisis that dwarfs the one caused by collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.

While Spain and Portugal are grappling with near double digit inflation, Germany and other core countries are gripped with a deflationary shock, one that has also begun to infect the US which is flirting with a full blown recession. In the UK, the economy is struggling with a double dip recession inflicted by the euro crisis.



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:22:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
U.S. Seeks Advance Notice of BP Asset Sales or Cash Transfers - NYTimes.com

LONDON (AP) -- BP, the oil giant, confirmed on Wednesday that it received a demand from American authorities for notice of any asset sales or significant cash transfers.

The Financial Times reported Wednesday that Tony West, the assistant attorney general in charge of the Justice Department's civil division, wrote to BP's general counsel, Rupert Bondy, on June 23. Normally the Justice Department does not require advance notice of such deals.

"We have received the letter, and have not yet responded," a BP press officer, Sheila Williams, said. "We will be responding in due course."

She declined to say whether the Justice Department had set a deadline.

The letter underlines Washington's scrutiny of BP as it struggles to cap the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, which began on April 20, and to clean up the damage.



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:26:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Fed's Hoenig Says Central Bank Should Increase Target Interest Rate to 1% - Bloomberg

Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank President Thomas Hoenig repeated his view the Fed should raise its target rate to 1 percent, even as some economic reports indicate the recovery is slowing.

"I am not saying raise rates to very high levels, I am saying get it off zero," Hoenig said today in an interview on Bloomberg Radio's "The Hays Advantage," with Kathleen Hays. "What I am advocating is a policy of shooting toward normality." He said he didn't think a "1 percent interest rate would be harmful to the economy."

Hoenig, the Fed's longest-serving policy maker, has dissented from decisions of the Federal Open Market Committee four times this year, objecting to its pledge to keep interest rates low for an "extended period." Hoenig said the language limits the committee's "flexibility to begin raising rates modestly," according to the FOMC's June 23 statement.

Hoenig today said he expects the economy to grow "about 3 percent this year," less than his earlier forecast for growth of "above 3 percent." He also said the central bank should dispose of the assets it accumulated in the course of fighting the financial crisis "as reasonably as we can, as quickly as we can."



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:45:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
re: industrial policy

Buffett cut more than 20,000 jobs last year as the economic slump curbed demand for the textiles, manufactured houses and diamond rings sold by Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire. The company, which employs more than 200,000, resumed hiring in some businesses as the economy improved, Buffett said in May....

Berkshire cut the jobs at Fort Payne, Alabama-based Desoto amid a decline in sales, the department said. The employee reductions weren't caused by Berkshire's move to shift sock production to Honduras in 2006 and 2007, the department said in its original rejection of the company's request for aid.

The trade adjustment assistance, which began in 1962, provides workers who have been harmed because their plant moved overseas or shut due to increased imports with an additional 18 months of unemployment insurance, a tax break to help pay for health insurance and subsidized training.

Desoto is part of Berkshire's Fruit of the Loom, which had about 27,000 workers at the end of 2009, compared with almost 35,000 a year earlier. Berkshire added to its clothing business with the 2006 takeover of athletic wear maker Russell Corp.

Berkshire's profit jumped 61 percent to $8.06 billion in 2009.

Read more...



Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 05:36:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Keeping up the class war...
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 02:23:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In Class Warfare, Guess Which Class Is Winning - New York Times

It turned out that Mr. Buffett, with immense income from dividends and capital gains, paid far, far less as a fraction of his income than the secretaries or the clerks or anyone else in his office. Further, in conversation it came up that Mr. Buffett doesn't use any tax planning at all. He just pays as the Internal Revenue Code requires. "How can this be fair?" he asked of how little he pays relative to his employees. "How can this be right?"

Even though I agreed with him, I warned that whenever someone tried to raise the issue, he or she was accused of fomenting class warfare.

"There's class warfare, all right," Mr. Buffett said, "but it's my class, the rich class, that's making war, and we're winning."

Dr. Buffett and Mr. Hyde...

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:12:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In a better world, Buffett would have incentiveized the bosses to come up with a way to keep those employees on with clever new ideas. New products, new training, new ways to do the same job or different.

Incentives that included keeping the bosses who figured it out, and dismissing those who didn't.

So, bad move on Buffett's part.

On the other hand, he plays by the rules pretty well and has been vocal about this issue of the rich needing to be taxed more.

If he doesn't go after all the profit he can, he can get sued. Whether 'all the profit he can' should include destroying the economy of a neighboring state and the lives of thousands of workers...I'd, of course, say no. Also, I would say that Buffett should go after whichever exec blocked those workers from getting the retraining and other aid benefits - reprehensible, and reflecting poorly on the rarely tarnished name of the Wizard of Omaha.

Never underestimate their intelligence, always underestimate their knowledge.

Frank Delaney ~ Ireland

by siegestate (siegestate or beyondwarispeace.com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 09:48:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
re: "If he doesn't go after all the profit he can, he can get sued."

This is statement is a fallacy and ought not be repeated, unless perhaps "profit maximization" is the specific subject of a discussion of or exegesis on tort jurisprudence regarding, generally, fiduciary duties.

That is, people of the investor persuasion sue to recover a realized loss. They may attempt to sue (and fail) to obtain a profit never realized.

"Profit maximization" is commonly understood to be the principle objective of human enterprise. It is not the only objective, however, which stands to reason as to why "profit maximization" is not a prerequisite of Anglo-Saxon civil and criminal tests of lawful business that proscribe all corporate bylaws, contraband and commerce, and executable private contracts. The latter instrument, generally, seeks to minimize foreseeable losses of the parties --conversely, to preserve the value of minimum energies invested by them-- whether by explicitly limiting the liability of the signatories or limiting transaction value range of the commodities to be exchanged during the term of a contract.

The first principle of tort is validation of an alledged and evident wrong (harm or loss); it is not a measure of the good or benefit such as profit obtained but validation of principal amount protected --"saved" as it were. Moreover, a hypothesis such as the expectation of obtaining "all the profit" possible is not conclusively falsifiable so cannot be per se litigated reasonably for judgement. One may argue successfully, no profit is maximum profit: R=C, sale price=purchase price.

Accordingly, there isn't an agent on the planet who will guarantee future earnings (profit or "return") attributable to brokered securities speculation; a very few do guarantee principal amount surrendered for speculation. And the first line of defense for officers of publicly traded corporate "equity" is their arms-length fiduciary duty to shareholders ("owners"), being in aggregate an entity distinct from the going concerns of the corporation, namely being Assignee to assure repayment of corporate obligations to all other creditors before declaring and distributing profit to shareholders. Common and codified law affirms an absolute priority and discharge of contract, to remedy losses. Rather than future, unsecured, and unknown profit potential.

No wonder, the popularity of bond and preferred share purchases ("investments" in secured lending) is enduring. Most human beans and bonobos are risk averse:D

The disappointed investor's typically recourse is a claim to a loss (the wrong or harm) of principal amount because of specific acts of embezzlement or fraud attributed to some buyer's or seller's agent who is  alleged to be --for good measure-- the investor's fiduciary. Conversely, persons identified by plaintiffs such as securities traders and brokers typically dismiss fiduciary assignment, thereby any financial responsibility for "investor" profit expectation; and corporate officers escape conviction of shareholders' complaints of their "negligence" in preserving or increasing the fair value of the securities stuffed in virtual deposit boxes.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Jul 11th, 2010 at 11:08:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe you would like to revisit the diary "Shareholder value" is wrongly interpreted by technopolitical on December 22nd, 2006

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jul 11th, 2010 at 12:02:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
huh. This is my first visit to that article.

I got no beef with any of the points and don't see a contradiction between that material --let's call it Generally Accepted Shareholder Rights (GASR)-- and what I've written about the fallacy of profit maximization  WRT successful litigation of a (properly identified) fiduciary's duties.

In the US, I hasten to add now: I detect an accent in technopolitical's speech.

technopolitical and I begin with the same premise. Whereas technopolitical seeks to exculpate buyer delusions about price signals through conventional discursion of The Agency Problem that obstruct price appreciation ("share value") or fungibility of a security held for RESALE, I do not.

Because the owner does not purchase title and right to profit from price appreciation of a security. The equity holder purchases title and rights to a share of the future earnings IF ANY of an enterprise.

What commercial law requires a corporation to profit much less distribute profit much less guarantee the price of equities outstanding at every point in time?

(1) To quote Wikipedia [!], "In most countries, including the United States, boards of directors and company managers have a fiduciary responsibility to run the company in the interests of its shareholders." (Stock: Shareholder rights)

Not. A. Trivial. Distinction. "Interest" and "ownership interest" have legally enforceable meanings unrelated to measures of profit and related to agency (i.e. a representation of ownership such as an assignment of a fiduciary) and usufruct, GAAP not P/E, as well as insurable property and casualty and liability. What technopolitical does not address, sensibly, are contractual terms of employment that typically indemnify --hold harmless-- owner('s') assignees, fiduciaries.

(2) Running a corporation in the interests of its shareholders, commonly described as "maximising shareholder value", and this is generally taken to mean (at least to a good approximation) maximising the value of the shares.

technopolitical is writing from that veery special FIRE sales perspective on market cap --presumed to  represent more accurately the present value of a company's earnings "potential" or future "wealth" than its dividend distributions-- and the benefits of purchasing equities as if the fair value, predictably escalating price in the secondary market, of outstanding shares were under management.

This is the eschatology of speculative finance whence arises the plea

With the soft reform option, a director or manager taking a decision that is overwhelmingly beneficial to shareholders would be protected from lawsuits (and principled scorn), even if the effect on the corporation's share value is negative.

Directors are protected by law insofar embezzlement and fraud cannot be proved. That test doesn't however precluded shareholders filing complaints about equity price depreciation or resales "below cost" or at a "loss" or "negative" or "under water" because they've spare change to retain attys.

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Sun Jul 11th, 2010 at 05:45:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'd love to see your two comments  here developed into a diary...

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jul 11th, 2010 at 06:51:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]

A blog post manufacturing plant. 2010. source: "These days everyone "needs" a refrigerator, but I believe my grandmother didn't have one growing up. The important thing is to not get too caught up in the words "making" and "things." A farmer makes plants. A cook makes meals. A chef makes recipes. A restaurant investor makes business plans. A marketing specialist makes brand loyalty. A salesman makes sales. A personal trainer makes muscle mass. A maid makes the bed. A musician makes songs."

Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 09:20:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
re: industrial policy

Dubbed "ruralsourcing," "rural outsourcing" and "onshoring," the practice relies on two simple premises: Smaller towns need jobs, and they offer a cheaper cost of living than urban centers. So businesses that outsource work to these areas can expect to pay less -- rates are often as much as 25% to 50% lower -- than if they were hiring urbanites with comparable skills.

In response, a new crop of outsourcing startups are popping up with development centers in places like Joplin, Mo., and Eveleth, Minn., where hundreds of employees crank out software code or offer IT support for large corporate clients....

One rural outsourcer, Onshore Technology Services, recruits workers from minimum-wage jobs and gives them intensive training in IT specialties. Sixty-five people work in IT centers in the rural Missouri towns of Macon, Lebanon, and Joplin. "They're moving people from fast-food to IT jobs and letting them use their brains," [information systems professor Mary] Lacity says.

Meanwhile, CrossUSA in Burnsville, Minn., recruits experienced, older IT workers who are nearing retirement for its 100-employee operations in Sebeka, Minn., (population 700) and Eveleth, Minn., (population 3,000)....

Human Genome Sciences now pays about $55 an hour for technical support from Rural Sourcing. That's about 15% higher than the rates quoted by the Indian outsourcing firm Evans considered, but half of what it would cost for him to hire a software development firm locally in the Washington, D.C., metro area.

"Now when we have a problem, we can get right on the phone and talk through the issue real-time. That right there is worth the extra [!] cost," Evans says.

Read more...



Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 11:11:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Cat, your "read more" link on the industrial policy comment does not work.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Jul 11th, 2010 at 07:23:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
For a New Generation, an Elusive American Dream - NYTimes.com
He was braced for the conversation with his father in particular. While Scott Nicholson viewed the Hanover job as likely to stunt his career, David Nicholson, 57, accustomed to better times and easier mobility, viewed it as an opportunity. Once in the door, the father has insisted to his son, opportunities will present themselves -- as they did in the father's rise over 35 years to general manager of a manufacturing company.

...

Complicating the generational divide, Scott's grandfather, William S. Nicholson, a World War II veteran and a retired stock broker, has watched what he described as America's once mighty economic engine losing its pre-eminence in a global economy. The grandfather has encouraged his unemployed grandson to go abroad -- to "Go West," so to speak.

...

The grandfather's injunction startled the grandson. But as the weeks pass, Scott Nicholson, handsome as a Marine officer in a recruiting poster, has gradually realized that his career will not roll out in the Greater Boston area -- or anywhere in America -- with the easy inevitability that his father and grandfather recall, and that Scott thought would be his lot, too, when he finished college in 2008.



By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 06:37:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:10:30 AM EST
MIDEAST: These Explosions Are Saviours - IPS ipsnews.net
GAZA CITY, Jul 7, 2010 (IPS) - At precisely 12 noon on a Thursday afternoon, among the rolling sandy hills in southern Gaza, a controlled explosion destroys another round of white phosphorous shells left in Gaza following the 2008-2009 Israeli war on Gaza.

Explosives experts from the Mines Advisory Group (MAG) and the United Nations Mine Action Team (UNMAT) are working together to eliminate the remainders of a deadly Israeli attack. The Israeli bombings from land, sea and air left behind large amounts of unexploded ordnance (UXO) in civilian areas.

In a precise, technical routine which takes into account all possible dangers to the MAG and UNMAT workers as well as Palestinian residents living in Gaza, the explosives experts are, detonation by detonation ridding Gaza of the remaining white phosphorous shells.

In order to deprive them of oxygen, shells are first sealed in plaster casts, then moved into large sand-filled containers, until their day of detonation.

Controlled detonations occur twice weekly, coordinated with the Hamas government and the Israeli army, whose war planes fly over the detonation site during the afternoon.

On the day of the seventh round of UXOs to be detonated, there are eight shells to destroy. Two are completely full and six are broken open but unexploded.

Inside each shell are 122 sponges soaked with the lethal chemical, designed to scatter far upon explosion.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:16:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
what is the purpose of the war planes?  Do they catch any sponges that escape (presumably by winding down the window and sticking a net out)?
by njh on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 07:35:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Or perhaps they are authorized to shoot missiles at the sponges and get points...

Actually, any quip is too cruel to write (though not as cruel as the Israeli's treat their neighbors.)

Never underestimate their intelligence, always underestimate their knowledge.

Frank Delaney ~ Ireland

by siegestate (siegestate or beyondwarispeace.com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 08:36:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
McChrystal Probe of SOF Killings Excluded Key Eyewitnesses - IPS ipsnews.net
WASHINGTON, Jul 6, 2010 (IPS) - The follow-up investigation of a botched Special Operations Forces (SOF) raid in Gardez Feb. 12 that killed two government officials and three women, ordered by Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal Apr. 5, was ostensibly aimed at reconciling divergent Afghan and U.S. accounts of what happened during and after the raid.

That implied that the U.S. investigators would finally do what they had failed to do in the original investigation - interview the eyewitnesses. But three eyewitnesses who had claimed to see U.S. troops digging bullets of the bodies of three women told IPS they were never contacted by U.S. investigators.

The failure to interview key eyewitnesses, along with the refusal to make public any of the investigation's findings, continued a pattern of behaviour by McChrystal's command of denying that the SOF unit had begun a cover-up of the killings immediately after the raid.

Both the original report of the U.S. investigation and initial NATO report on the Feb. 12 night raid in Gardez remain classified, according to Lt. Col. Todd Breasseale, the officer who was spokesman for McChrystal on the issue before the general was relieved of his command Jun. 23.

Casting further doubt on the integrity of the investigation, the officer who carried out the follow-up investigation was under McChrystal's direct command after completing the investigation.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:19:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Charges for Soldier Accused of Leak - NYTimes.com

BAGHDAD -- An American soldier in Iraq who was arrested on charges of leaking a video of a deadly American helicopter attack here in 2007 has also been charged with downloading more than 150,000 highly classified diplomatic cables that could, if made public, reveal the inner workings of American embassies around the world, the military here announced Tuesday. Associated Press

The full contents of the cables remain unclear, but according to formal charges filed Monday, it appeared that a disgruntled soldier working at a remote base east of Baghdad had gathered some of the most guarded, if not always scandalous, secrets of American diplomacy. He disclosed at least 50 of the cables "to a person not entitled to receive them," according to the charges.

With the charges, a case that stemmed from the furor over a graphic and fiercely contested video of an attack from an American helicopter that killed 12 people, including a reporter and a driver for Reuters, mushroomed into a far more extensive and potentially embarrassing leak.

The charges cited only one cable by name, "Reykjavik 13," which appeared to be one made public by WikiLeaks.org, a whistle-blowing Web site devoted to disclosing the secrets of governments and corporations. The Web site decoded and in April made public an edited version of the helicopter attack in a film it called "Collateral Murder."

In the cable, dated Jan. 13, the American deputy chief of mission, Sam Watson, detailed private discussions he held with Iceland's leaders over a referendum on whether to repay losses from a bank failure, including a frank assessment that Iceland could default in 2011. (The referendum failed, but negotiations continue.)



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:19:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Steps Point to Possible Swap of Spy Suspects With Russia - NYTimes.com

MOSCOW -- The mother of a Russian scientist convicted of spying for the United States said Wednesday that her son had been moved to Moscow from a penal colony in preparation for a possible trade involving the Russian spy suspects detained last month in the United States.

The scientist's lawyer and colleagues confirmed the woman's account, according to Russian news agencies, but the Russian authorities had no immediate comment.

The scientist, Igor Sutyagin, was arrested in 1999 and accused of passing secrets about nuclear submarines and missile warning systems to a British company that prosecutors said was a front for the C.I.A. Mr. Sutyagin, who was convicted in 2004 and sentenced to 15 years in prison, had maintained his innocence.

In an interview, Mr. Sutyagin's mother, Svetlana E. Sutyagina, said he had been transferred to Moscow and that she had met with him on Wednesday morning.

"He said they made him sign a confession of guilt and that there was not much time, as they should accuse those detained in America tomorrow," Ms. Sutyagina said. Her son, whom she described as bearded and thin from his time in prison, is to be pardoned and sent to Vienna, she said, adding that from there he is to be handed over to the British government.



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:23:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:11:21 AM EST
COLOMBIA: Palm Planters and Displaced People Wait for New Government - IPS ipsnews.net
BOGOTÁ, Jul 5, 2010 (IPS) - Twenty-three African palm plantation owners, who invested 34 million dollars in Colombia up to 2003 and have spent another 15 million dollars on a palm oil refinery, are soon to be sentenced by a court.

They are charged with, the forcible displacement of 5,000 small farmers and invasion of 100,000 hectares of land that is legally the collective property of Afro-Colombian communities in the jungles of Chocó, a province in the northwest of the country.

Lawyer Carlos Merlano, one of the accused, who works for the Urapalma company, agreed to plead guilty to the charges against him and testify against others involved, in exchange for leniency.

The case would be just another land dispute, but for the involvement of the army, notary's offices, state bodies and even the Agriculture Ministry.

With the country's attention focused on the actions of president-elect Juan Manuel Santos, this case has hardly been noticed, and yet it is part of the legacy of outgoing President Álvaro Uribe which the new government will have to deal with when it takes office in August.

The prosecution accuses leaders of ultra-rightwing paramilitary groups such as Freddy Rendón (alias "El Alemán"); a woman called Sister Teresa Gómez; and a palm plantation owner from Antioquía, a province bordering Chocó, Rodrigo Zapata, of colluding in crime for profit.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:18:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Scrubbing CO2 From Atmosphere Takes Commitment
Palo Alto CA (SPX) Jul 07, 2010
With carbon dioxide in the atmosphere approaching alarming levels, even halting emissions altogether may not be enough to avert catastrophic climate change.

Could scrubbing carbon dioxide from the air be a viable solution? A new study by scientists at the Carnegie Institution suggests that while removing excess carbon dioxide would cool the planet, complexities of the carbon cycle would limit the effectiveness of a one-time effort.

To keep carbon dioxide at low levels would require a long-term commitment spanning decades or even centuries.

Previous studies have shown that reducing carbon dioxide emissions to zero would not lead to appreciable cooling, because carbon dioxide already within the atmosphere would continue to trap heat. For cooling to occur, greenhouse gas concentrations would need to be reduced.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:34:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
US Approach To Farming Should Change To Meet New Challenges
Washington DC (SPX) Jul 06, 2010
U.S. farmers are under pressure to produce more, pollute less, fulfill consumer preferences, and make a living - all with increasingly scarce natural resources and the uncertain effects of climate change, says a new report from the National Research Council.

To help U.S. agriculture evolve to meet these demands, the report concludes, national agricultural policies and research programs should look beyond focusing only on low costs and high production and adopt a holistic perspective to farming that encompasses multiple end goals.

"Although farming productivity has increased, nowadays farmers are being asked to do more than produce more food for a growing world population," said Julia Kornegay, chair of the committee that wrote the report, and professor and head of the department of horticultural science at North Carolina State University, Raleigh.

"Many modern agricultural practices have unintended negative consequences, such as decreased water and air quality, and farmers have to consider these consequences while trying to increase production..."

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:35:35 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ethical Issues Ignored In Sustainability Education
East Lansing MI (SPX) Jul 07, 2010
Just about everyone agrees that sustainability - cutting energy use, reducing carbon emissions and, in general, keeping the Earth green - is a good thing. But why do we think that? Do we support sustainability for the right reasons?

These are among the questions that Michigan State University's Michael Nelson addresses in a paper published this month in the journal Bioscience titled "Sustainability: Virtuous or Vulgar?"

Specifically, Nelson and co-author John Vucetich of Michigan Technological University argue that the issue of ethics is a vital component in the teaching and research of sustainability, but one that is sorely lacking.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:36:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Facebook | AP: Behind the Story: How AP found 27,000 abandoned oil wells
It seemed as though The Associated Press was covering every conceivable aspect of BP's oil spill. It's a story that jumps out and grabs a journalist by the lapels, with its dense clouds of oil, dying birds and tar balls on the beaches.

Knowing that BP's Deepwater Horizon rig was being sealed with cement for temporary abandonment when it blew April 20, AP Investigative Editor Richard T. Pienciak took it a step further. Are there more abandoned wells? And are they leaking unseen at the sea floor?

The challenging task of finding out was assigned to me and my colleague, Mitch Weiss, an AP writer based in Charlotte, N.C. The AP released our findings today in text, photos and an interactive and video. We found more than 27,000 abandoned oil and gas wells -- yes, 27,000! -- in the Gulf of Mexico.


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 11:37:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
cheesis !!

that's good journalism

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 05:40:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ethanol Subsidies: Bad for the Gulf, Good for BP | Mother Jones

Josh reported yesterday on the National Corn Growers Association's attempt to put a farmer-friendly spin on the Gulf disaster by promoting ethanol as an alternative. But as Josh notes, ethanol production presents its own disaster for the Gulf. But it gets worse: among the major beneficiaries of our country's corn-loving ways is BP. The oil giant stands to gain $600 million through ethanol tax breaks this year alone.

An analysis from Environmental Working Group finds that BP will bring in millions through the Volumetric Ethanol Excise Tax Credit (or VEETC), a tax break for refiners that blend ethanol into gasoline. The tax credit has become yet another handout to oil companies.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 11:51:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
'Climategate' review clears scientists of dishonesty over data | Environment | guardian.co.uk

The climate scientists at the centre of a media storm were today cleared of accusations that they fudged their results and silenced critics to bolster the case for man-made global warming.

Sir Muir Russell, the senior civil servant who led a six-month inquiry into the affair, said the "rigour and honesty" of the scientists at the world-leading Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia (UEA) are not in doubt. They did not subvert the peer review process to censor criticism as alleged, the panel found, while key data needed to reproduce their findings was freely available to any "competent" researcher.

The panel did criticise the scientists for not being open enough about their work, and said they were "unhelpful and defensive" when responding to legitimate requests made under freedom of information (FOI) laws.

The row was sparked when 13 years of emails from CRU scientists were hacked and released online last year. Climate change sceptics claimed they showed scientists manipulating and suppressing data to back up a theory of man-made climate change. Critics also alleged that the scientists abused their positions to cover up flaws and distort the peer review process that determines which studies are published in journals, and so enter the scientific record. Some alleged that the emails cast doubt on the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).



The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt ät gmail dotcom) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 12:25:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
although you'd barely know it if you relied upon the main BBC News which gave much greater prominence to the doubts than to the barely mentioned exoneration

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 05:42:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The source code is out there for everyone to see. Propaganda can only do so much.

luis_de_sousa@mastodon.social
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]protonmail[dot]ch) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:14:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh, it appears the propaganda is working nicely.

I haven't seen out-of-context source code used as propaganda before, but I guess it was just a matter of time.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:23:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Sudden Surplus Calls for Quick Thinking
  NYT


                                                                                   Bonneville Power Administration
Extra water gushing from a spillway at Bonneville Dam. Water that goes down the spillway rather than through turbines gets frothy and can kill salmon and steelheads.

Engineers say that if the power grid becomes more reliant on renewable energy, a lot of new transmission lines will have to be built at some point or there will be unhappy consequences. Mostly this problem has been predicted rather than experienced. But the future may have arrived last month, when the Bonneville Power Administration, a federal agency that oversees power transmission in the Pacific Northwest, had more energy than it could comfortably use.

The BPA is accustomed to a surplus of hydroelectric power in the spring, as the winter snow pack melts. Last winter there was only about 60 percent as much snow as usual, according to energy experts. But in the late spring heavy rain arrived. Unlike snow melt, which can be predicted by temperature, rainwater gives little warning. And suddenly there was a surplus.

"This year was a little more severe and a little more unexpected,'' said Michael C. Milstein, a spokesman for the power administration.

In a normal spring, the BPA first shuts down its fossil-powered plants, then exports as much as it can so its neighbors can do the same. This year, he said, "we were essentially asking other utilities to shut down their thermal plants, and most of the coal and gas plants in the region were shut down. They were taking low or no-cost power from us.''

When it runs out of neighbors that can take the power, the BPA can also let the extra water run down the dams' spillways, bypassing the power-producing turbines. But that turns out to pose an environmental problem. Water that goes down the spillway gets frothy, and the excess air bubbles can kill salmon and steelheads, an endangered species in the upper Columbia River. So the BPA solved the problem by running all the water through the turbines, making power it didn't need, Mr. Milstein said.


Kinda looks like they need the new transmission capability already.

Also see dodo's diary Wind power faulted for low prices!

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

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 02:54:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Bonneville Dam is a salmon killer any which way they choose to run it.
by Magnifico on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 01:50:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah, but you have to blame wind power for it.

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:14:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Blade smear causes leaping salmon to be chopped into handy plancha slices. Wind farm operators make (yes!) windfall profits out of this.

You know it makes sense.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 08:59:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But the major reason they want to build more transmission and wind capabilities is so that they can supply renewable power to satisfy California's mandates.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 10:30:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EUObserver : EU to seek temporary ban on deep-water oil permits


EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - EU energy commissioner Gunther Oettinger has indicated that member states should stop giving out fresh permits for deep-water oil drilling in the light of the BP oil catastrophe.

"I am considering discussing this with member states, so that when new permits are issued, especially in extreme cases, they will consider deferring this," he told MEPs at a debate in Strasbourg on Wednesday (8 July).

"I am actually considering suggesting a moratorium at this moment ... And I think it is really not justifiable to be issuing licences or permits for further drilling operations at this moment."

The commissioner underlined that decisions on oil permits and safety rules are made exclusively by national capitals. But he said member states should consider giving away some of their powers in this area in future.

"National supervision will certainly remain in place but it would be a good idea to have overarching European standards and a European supervisory authority," he said.

Mr Oettinger has launched talks with major oil firms with a view to future proposals on supervision, emergency planning, clean-up operations, environmental liability rules and compulsory oil spill insurance.



luis_de_sousa@mastodon.social
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]protonmail[dot]ch) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:18:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
EUOberserver : BP detergent could pose risk for EU coastlines


EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - A leading scientist has warned that the detergent being used by BP to break up oil in the Gulf of Mexico could pose an environmental threat as far afield as the EU, after ocean currents bring residues to Europe next year.

Martin Visbeck, head of the Physical Oceanography unit at the IFM-Geomar institute in Kiel, Germany, told EUobserver on Tuesday (6 July) that the large amount of detergent - most of it a substance called Corexit 9500 - being pumped into the sea poses an unknown environmental risk.

"That's what we are concerned about. There's a lot of understanding of the oil but not of the detergents. They have never been put into the water in such quantities before," he said.

"BP says they're safe but we're not sure," he added.

"They have been approved by the EPA [the US Environmental Protection Agency] but in these large quantities, we'll know what happens when it happens."

BP has so far put 6,493,526 litres of detergent into the sea according to data from Deepwater Horizon Unified Command, the joint BP-US body set up to handle the oil disaster. A further 47,136 litres is being added daily as of 6 July.

The detergent can cause kidney and liver damage if directly ingested by people.



luis_de_sousa@mastodon.social
by Luis de Sousa (luis[dot]de[dot]sousa[at]protonmail[dot]ch) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:22:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:11:51 AM EST
CENTRAL AMERICA: Rampant Violence Means Childhood Interrupted - IPS ipsnews.net
GUATEMALA CITY, Jul 6, 2010 (IPS) - Very early one recent morning in the eastern Guatemalan municipality of Esquipulas, the residents slept soundly -- until heart-rending screams from the street broke the calm.

It was José Gómez Ramírez, 12, and he was pleading for his life.

On Jun. 15, while the boy slept, a group of criminals broke into his house in the Loma Linda district, dragged him from his bed and into a nearby street. Shortly afterwards, gunshots were heard, and his voice was silenced forever.

According to the police, Gómez had witnessed a crime, and the perpetrators went after him to keep him from testifying against them.

The case is representative of the violence that permeates the lives of children and youths in what is known as Central America's Northern Triangle, made up of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. There, deaths are tallied by the hundreds.

In Guatemala alone, 189 children 17 and younger were killed between January and May. In other words, 7.8 percent of the 2,413 violent deaths -- 16 daily - - reported in that period, according to the research and analysis board of the Human Rights Prosecutor's Office and the National Civil Police.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:17:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Benjamin Cohen on Technology - Government set to announce analogue to digital radio switchover but what's the point?

Tomorrow the broadcasting minister Ed Vaizey is expected to announce the switchover date of analogue to digital radio. It will mean tens of millions of analogue only radios will become almost completely useless and its not expected that consumers will be given any Government assistance to switch over.

In the 2009 Interim Digital Britain report, it was proposed by the last Government that there would likely be a switch from analogue to digital radio by 2015. Tomorrow Mr Vaizey in his first major speech on broadcasting policy is expected to commit the coalition Government to the 2015 switchover.

As far as I understand it, BBC and commercial radio stations will be told to vacate their spots on the analogue spectrum and migrate their listeners over to digital platforms whether that be DAB radio or radio via digital TV boxes or by mobile or fixed line broadband.

But unlike the switchover to digital television, the spectrum currently being used for analogue radio will not be auctioned off. Instead, the Government plan to allow community based radio stations to use the airwaves broadcasting essentially not for profit, hyper-local programming.

The move will cost consumers big time. Although everyone by 2012 will already be able to access digital radio in their homes via their digital tv set-top box, much of the consumption of radio currently takes place in the car. And while the Government have a scheme to pay for elderly and disabled viewers switch to digital TV, the same won't be the case for switching to digital car radios.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 11:35:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There is a slowly building head of public resistance, but it may be too little too late.

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 05:44:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ScienceBlogs, we have a problem | Science | guardian.co.uk

Much consternation over at the home of science blogging, ScienceBlogs. The home of the brilliant Orac, Pharynula, Molecule of the Day, and countless other insightful, funny and informative blogs has decided upon a very bizarre new strategy in sourcing new posts. As of yesterday, the platform will host a new blog written by food giant PepsiCo, all about the company's specialist subject of refreshing sugary drinks and their benefits for dental and dietary health.

Sorry, no, PepsiCo's scientific staff will be writing about nutrition on the new Food Frontiers blog. I'll give you a moment to get back on your chair.



Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 01:11:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That went over well.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 04:03:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Royal Society launches seminal education report - Science News - The Royal Society
A new report published by the Royal Society has found that the majority of England's primary schools do not have the science specialist teachers needed to provide a high quality science education.  The Royal Society recommends that every primary school should have a science specialist teacher and finds that to enable this, the number of science specialist teachers must triple.   The report analysed science and mathematics education in primary and early secondary education, finding a serious shortage of science specialist teachers in English primary schools.


Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 01:30:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That headline should be saved for an article on sex ed.
by Zwackus on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 11:35:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Guardian: Papers reveal Nixon plan for North Korea nuclear strike

According to newly revealed government documents, Nixon is even believed to have ordered nuclear bombers to be put on standby for an immediate strike after North Korean jets downed the American plane as it flew over international waters collecting electronic and radio intelligence.

The documents, obtained by the National Security Archive in Washington after a freedom of information request, describe the plan codenamed Freedom Drop, which called for "pre-co-ordinated options for the selective use of tactical nuclear weapons against North Korea".

Surprisingly, the contingency plans predicted that - depending on the scale of the nuclear strike - there could be as few as 100 casualties and no more than a few thousand.

A June 1969 memo from the US defence secretary, Melvin Laird, to Nixon's national security adviser, Henry Kissinger, outlined a number of options for a conventional and nuclear response to what were perceived as growing provocations by North Korea.

These included a plan to "conduct strikes against military targets in North Korea employing one nuclear weapon on each target". The memo suggests a "punitive attack" against 12 targets listed as command centres, airfields and naval bases.


by Magnifico on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 01:52:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
About a month old...

Google StreetView cars grabbed traffic from open WiFi networks

Google put up a blog post last month detailing exactly what kind of data its Street View cars collected in response to an inquiry from German lawmakers. At the time, Google said that it collects SSID information as well as the MAC addresses of WiFi routers it encounters along the Street View route. This is for use in Google's location-based services, like Skyhook Wireless' services that are widely used on mobile devices without GPS.

The company said that it only uses information that is is accessible by anyone walking down the street with a WiFi-compatible device, and that it did not collect any kind of payload data related to those networks. It turns out that statement wasn't true. In a follow-up blog post on Friday afternoon, the company said it reviewed the data that Street View cars had collected and found that some "samples" of information users sent over their networks were indeed saved. As for why it happened, the company says it was essentially a huge oversight.

...

Google has asked a third party to review what was collected and confirm that it was deleted. It also plans to review its procedures to ensure something similar doesn't happen in the future. The company is turning this whole scenario into a lesson: "This incident highlights just how publicly accessible open, non-password-protected WiFi networks are today."



By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 05:03:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
ah yes here

http://www.eurotrib.com/comments/2010/5/15/114549/797/16#16

Not quite on a par with the Amazon book-reader and the Orwell novel... but in a list of unintended consequences of software bugs, this is one of my favourites.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 08:59:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Wed Jul 7th, 2010 at 10:12:14 AM EST
McClatchy: Poll: 63 percent of U.S. adults tuning out World Cup

While World Cup fever is surging across the Atlantic with an all-European final, a new poll indicates that not even the last-minute heroics of U.S. soccer star Landon Donovan could captivate U.S. audiences the way that Spanish star David Villa and Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder electrified their nations with bending strikes and acrobatic headers into the net.

That's not simply because Ghana knocked out the U.S. in the round of 16 on June 26. According to a Marist Poll released Wednesday, the buzz of the vuvuzela never caught on much in the States, even as Donovan and Co. were stunning England and screeching past Algeria to make the deepest U.S. run in the World Cup tournament since 2002.

Some 63 percent of U.S. residents didn't tune in at all, while 27 percent watched "some" of the tournament and 10 percent saw "most" of it, the poll found.


by Magnifico on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 01:47:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
10 percent of Americans saw "most" of the World Cup? Up from how many 4 years ago?

That sounds like a success...

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 04:13:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Am on the floating hotel in the middle of an offshore wind farm being built... I'll have pictures when I get back.

Wind power
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 08:47:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Octopus land! (check email!)
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 08:55:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
From his secret wind powered fortress he commands his octopus minions to destroy Germanys world cup dreams.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 09:27:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Dr No.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 09:32:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
oder Herr Doktor Nein.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 09:35:29 AM EST
[ Parent ]
He don't need a fortress ...

(& His little octopus, too.)

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 10:30:38 AM EST
[ Parent ]
"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Jul 8th, 2010 at 11:23:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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