663: Pupil Progression Plan

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 3m
October 23rd, 2014
Share at 0:00

Executive Producers: Matthew Elwart, Anonymous, Jan Leclerc, Rob and Andrea Chagan

Associate Executive Producers: Sir Gene Naftulyev Baron de Marriott Serriff of Texas, Corwin Underwood, Mysterian Entertainment LLC, Danielle Geries

Cover Artist: Joe Wagner

Chapters

0:00
Start of Show
Woodstock
Suggest a new chapter
PR
TODAY
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Welcome to the party Candanavia!
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Hunter S. Thompson wrote on Sept 12 2001
"The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all
hopes for peace in our time, in the U.S. or any other country. Make no
mistake about it: we are at War now- with somebody- and we will stay at
war with that strange and mysterious enemy for the rest of our lives."
"It will be a religious war, a sort of christian jihad,fueled by
religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be
guerrilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no
identifiable enemy."
"This is going to be an expensive war, and victory is not
guaranteed-for anyone, and certainly not for a baffled little creep like
George W. Bush. All he knows is that his father started a war a long
time ago, and that he, the goofy child- president, has been chosen by
fate and the global oil industry to finish it off"
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Word of the day: Nifty
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Presidential Proclamation -- National Forest Products Week, 2014
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 18:26
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 17, 2014
NATIONAL FOREST PRODUCTS WEEK, 2014
-------
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Our Nation's forests are an essential element of our urban spaces and rural landscape. Covering more than 750 million acres across America, they create opportunities for recreation and habitats for wildlife, and their products play an integral role in our Nation's economy and our daily lives. Paper and wood products allow us to communicate, teach, and learn. They provide us shelter and energy, and they package and deliver our food, medicine, and manufactured goods. And whether it is a paper containing the Gettysburg Address or a child's crayon masterpiece, these products capture life's memorable moments across generations. During National Forest Products Week, we celebrate the many uses of our natural bounty, and we renew our commitment to protect our forests and ensure these resources endure.
Forest products are recyclable and renewable, and in a changing climate, responsible management of our Nation's forests is even more important. Our forests purify the air we breathe and provide clean water to our communities. By absorbing and storing carbon dioxide, forests and forest products help reduce the greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, removing roughly 16 percent of our carbon emissions. In the face of increased threats to our forests -- including diseases and insect infestations that spread more quickly, droughts that last longer, and wildfires that burn more frequently and more intensely -- we are taking action to preserve these vital pieces of our environment and economy. As part of my Administration's Climate Action Plan, we are increasing the resilience of our country's forests and preserving their key role in mitigating climate change.
My Administration is committed to safeguarding these green spaces across our country for the use and enjoyment of our children and grandchildren. Through our America's Great Outdoors Initiative, we are empowering communities to do their part to protect their forested land, from urban parks to working forests. When cities and towns have the support they need to conserve their own resources, neighborhoods thrive and local economies grow.
For centuries, our forests have shaped the character of our Nation and contributed to its expansion, and we have an obligation to ensure the next generation has access to the same drivers of progress. This week, we resolve to do our part to protect our forests and secure a cleaner, healthier future for posterity.To recognize the importance of products from our forests, the Congress, by Public Law 86-753 (36 U.S.C. 123), as amended, has designated the week beginning on the third Sunday in October of each year as "National Forest Products Week" and has authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this week.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim October 19 through October 25, 2014, as National Forest Products Week. I call on the people of the United States to join me in recognizing the dedicated individuals who are responsible for the stewardship of our forests and for the preservation, management, and use of these precious natural resources for the benefit of the American people.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this seventeenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Character Counts Week, 2014
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 18:26
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 17, 2014
NATIONAL CHARACTER COUNTS WEEK, 2014
-------
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
For generations, our Nation's beliefs in mutual respect, shared responsibility, and equality for all have strengthened our bond as a people and guided our path -- uniting us in times of crisis and inspiring us in moments of triumph. During National Character Counts Week, we reaffirm the principles that built America and dedicate ourselves to passing on our highest ideals to our children.
We see the true character of our country in the examples set by the work and lives of our people. We see it in the educators, mentors, and parents who teach our kids not only to understand math and history, but also to know and show compassion and respect. We see it in first responders who put themselves in harm's way to protect strangers, and in our men and women in uniform who selflessly serve the land we love and defend the values we cherish. And we see it in small acts of kindness that define who we are as Americans and help us recognize our common humanity.
When we give our daughters and sons a foundation of integrity, hard work, and responsibility, and when we empower them with the courage to choose these values in the face of cynicism, we prepare them for a lifetime of engaged citizenship and create stronger communities across America. This week, and all year long, let us all do our part to ensure the fundamental tenets that have shaped our Union from its founding continue to sustain us and draw out the best in each of us.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim October 19 through October 25, 2014, as National Character Counts Week. I call upon public officials, educators, parents, students, and all Americans to observe this week with appropriate ceremonies, activities, and programs.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this seventeenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-ninth.
BARACK OBAMA
Letter -- Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to the Situation in or in Relation to the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:16
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 21, 2014
Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)
Section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1622(d)), provides for the automatic termination of a national emergency unless, within 90 days prior to the anniversary date of its declaration, the President publishes in the Federal Register and transmits to the Congress a notice stating that the emergency is to continue in effect beyond the anniversary date.
In accordance with this provision, I have sent to the Federal Register for publication the enclosed notice stating that the national emergency with respect to the situation in or in relation to the Democratic Republic of the Congo declared in Executive Order 13413 of October 27, 2006, is to continue in effect beyond October 27, 2014.
The situation in or in relation to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which has been marked by widespread violence and atrocities that continue to threaten regional stability, continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the foreign policy of the United States. For this reason, I have determined that it is necessary to continue the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13413 with respect to the situation in or in relation to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Sincerely,
BARACK OBAMA
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Smith Mundt Act - A reminder that you are living in a Smith-Mudt Act repealed media landscape
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act
The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Propaganda in the United States - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Sun, 21 Sep 2014 15:00
Propaganda in the United States is propaganda spread by government and media entities within the United States. Propaganda is information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to influence opinions. Propaganda is not only in advertising; it is also in radio, newspaper, posters, books, and anything else that might be sent out to the widespread public.
Domestic[edit]World War I[edit]The first large-scale use of propaganda by the U.S. government came during World War I. The government enlisted the help of citizens and children to help promote war bonds and stamps to help stimulate the economy. To keep the prices of war supplies down, the U.S. government produced posters that encouraged people to reduce waste and grow their own vegetables in "victory gardens." The public skepticism that was generated by the heavy-handed tactics of the Committee on Public Information would lead the postwar government to officially abandon the use of propaganda.[1]
World War II[edit]During World War II the U.S. officially had no propaganda, but the Roosevelt government used means to circumvent this official line. One such propaganda tool was the publicly owned but government funded Writers' War Board (WWB). The activities of the WWB were so extensive that it has been called the "greatest propaganda machine in history".[1]Why We Fight is a famous series of US government propaganda films made to justify US involvement in World War II.
In 1944 (lasting until 1948) prominent US policy makers launched a domestic propaganda campaign aimed at convincing the U.S. public to agree to a harsh peace for the German people, for example by removing the common view of the German people and the Nazi party as separate entities.[2] The core in this campaign was the Writers' War Board which was closely associated with the Roosevelt administration.[2]
Another means was the United States Office of War Information that Roosevelt established in June 1942, whose mandate was to promote understanding of the war policies under the director Elmer Davies. It dealt with posters, press, movies, exhibitions, and produced often slanted material conforming to US wartime purposes. Other large and influential non-governmental organizations during the war and immediate post war period were the Society for the Prevention of World War III and the Council on Books in Wartime.
Cold War[edit]During the Cold War, the U.S. government produced vast amounts of propaganda against communism and the Soviet bloc. Much of this propaganda was directed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation under J. Edgar Hoover, who himself wrote the anti-communist tract Masters of Deceit. The FBI's COINTELPRO arm solicited journalists to produce fake news items discrediting communists and affiliated groups, such as H. Bruce Franklin and the Venceremos Organization.
War on Drugs[edit]The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign, originally established by the National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988,[3][4] but now conducted by the Office of National Drug Control Policy under the Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998,[5] is a domestic propaganda campaign designed to "influence the attitudes of the public and the news media with respect to drug abuse" and for "reducing and preventing drug abuse among young people in the United States".[6][7] The Media Campaign cooperates with the Partnership for a Drug-Free America and other government and non-government organizations.[8]
Iraq War[edit]In early 2002, the U.S. Department of Defense launched an information operation, colloquially referred to as the Pentagon military analyst program.[9] The goal of the operation is "to spread the administrations's talking points on Iraq by briefing ... retired commanders for network and cable television appearances," where they have been presented as independent analysts.[10] On 22 May 2008, after this program was revealed in the New York Times, the House passed an amendment that would make permanent a domestic propaganda ban that until now has been enacted annually in the military authorization bill.[11]
The Shared values initiative was a public relations campaign that was intended to sell a "new" America to Muslims around the world by showing that American Muslims were living happily and freely, without persecution, in post-9/11 America.[12] Funded by the United States Department of State, the campaign created a public relations front group known as Council of American Muslims for Understanding (CAMU). The campaign was divided in phases; the first of which consisted of five mini-documentaries for television, radio, and print with shared values messages for key Muslim countries.[13]
NDAA and Overturning of Smith-Mundt Act[edit]The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (NDAA) allows for materials produced by the State Department and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) to be released within U.S. borders and strikes down a long-time ban on the dissemination of such material in the country.[14][15][16]
Ad Council[edit]The Ad Council, an American non-profit organization that distributes public service announcements on behalf of various private and federal government agency sponsors, has been labeled as "little more than a domestic propaganda arm of the federal government" given the Ad Council's historically close collaboration with the President of the United States and the federal government.[17]
International[edit]Through several international broadcasting operations, the US disseminates American cultural information, official positions on international affairs, and daily summaries of international news. These operations fall under the International Broadcasting Bureau, the successor of the United States Information Agency, established in 1953. IBB's operations include Voice of America, Radio Liberty, Alhurra and other programs. They broadcast mainly to countries where the United States finds that information about international events is limited, either due to poor infrastructure or government censorship. The Smith-Mundt Act prohibits the Voice of America from disseminating information to US citizens that was produced specifically for a foreign audience.
During the Cold War the US ran covert propaganda campaigns in countries that appeared likely to become Soviet satellites, such as Italy, Afghanistan, and Chile.
Recently The Pentagon announced the creation of a new unit aimed at spreading propaganda about supposedly "inaccurate" stories being spread about the Iraq War. These "inaccuracies" have been blamed on the enemy trying to decrease support for the war. Donald Rumsfeld has been quoted as saying these stories are something that keeps him up at night.[18]
Psychological operations[edit]The US military defines psychological operations, or PSYOP, as:
planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence the emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of foreign governments, organizations, groups, and individuals.[19]
The Smith-Mundt Act, adopted in 1948, explicitly forbids information and psychological operations aimed at the US public.[20][21][22] Nevertheless, the current easy access to news and information from around the globe, makes it difficult to guarantee PSYOP programs do not reach the US public. Or, in the words of Army Col. James A. Treadwell, who commanded the U.S. military psyops unit in Iraq in 2003, in the Washington Post:
There's always going to be a certain amount of bleed-over with the global information environment.[23]
Agence France Presse reported on U.S. propaganda campaigns that:
The Pentagon acknowledged in a newly declassified document that the US public is increasingly exposed to propaganda disseminated overseas in psychological operations.[24]
Former US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved the document referred to, which is titled "Information Operations Roadmap." [22][24] The document acknowledges the Smith-Mundt Act, but fails to offer any way of limiting the effect PSYOP programs have on domestic audiences.[20][21][25]
Several incidents in 2003 were documented by Sam Gardiner, a retired Air Force colonel, which he saw as information-warfare campaigns that were intended for "foreign populations and the American public." Truth from These Podia,[26] as the treatise was called, reported that the way the Iraq war was fought resembled a political campaign, stressing the message instead of the truth.[22]
See also[edit]References[edit]^ abThomas Howell, The Writers' War Board: U.S. Domestic Propaganda in World War II, Historian, Volume 59 Issue 4, Pages 795 - 813^ abSteven Casey, (2005), The Campaign to sell a harsh peace for Germany to the American public, 1944 - 1948, [online]. London: LSE Research Online. [Available online at http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/archive/00000736] Originally published in History, 90 (297). pp. 62-92 (2005) Blackwell Publishing^National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988 of the Anti''Drug Abuse Act of 1988, Pub.L. 100''690, 102 Stat. 4181, enacted November 18, 1988^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, footnote 6, page 3 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 (Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999), Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Gamboa, Anthony H. (January 4, 2005), B-303495, Office of National Drug Control Policy '-- Video News Release, Government Accountability Office, pp. 9''10 ^Drug-Free Media Campaign Act of 1998 of the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, Pub.L. 105''277, 112 Stat. 268, enacted October 21, 1998^Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 2006, Pub.L. 109''469, 120 Stat. 3501, enacted December 29, 2006, codified at 21 U.S.C. § 1708^Barstow, David (2008-04-20). "Message Machine: Behind Analysts, the Pentagon's Hidden Hand". New York Times. ^Sessions, David (2008-04-20). "Onward T.V. Soldiers: The New York Times exposes a multi-armed Pentagon message machine". Slate. ^Barstow, David (2008-05-24). "2 Inquiries Set on Pentagon Publicity Effort". New York Times. ^Rampton, Sheldon (October 17, 2007). "Shared Values Revisited". Center for Media and Democracy. ^"U.S. Reaches Out to Muslim World with Shared Values Initiative". America.gov. January 16, 2003.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ottawa Lone Wol(f)ves
Welcome to the party Candanavia!
Boots on the ground
I work in downtown Ottawa, two blocks from Parliament Hill where today's crazyness is going on. We were inside the "lockdown" radius and "evacuated" at about 1:00 pm. The evacuation was odd in that it was voluntary and at your own pace. I left after most of the people on my floor, and just got in my car and drove off as I normally would. Just with far less traffic.
There continues to be reports of second and third shooters in the area, and absolutely no information coming from the police. They are searching cars as the cross the bridges to Quebec, but not any other direction from the downtown core.
This all seems to be falling into the template established in Boston. We`ll see if the lockdown goes city-wide tomorrow. I can`t wait to be "rescued at the end of a gun"`.
I have little doubt that they will do all they can to link this with the "attack" the other day in Quebec where a guy ran some people over in his car.
Best part from the media so far is the police press conference update this afternoon on CBC where they showed the press conference leader make the Mayor get up and sit at the other end of the table so that everyone was in the correct order when he read the statement.
I'll keep my eye out for more wackiness out of this mess.
Boots on the ground from Jay Wall with clips
Hi Adam and John.
Thank you for your courage.
As you may have seen on the news in recent days, Canada has been
'rocked' by ISIL-inspired attacks more than once this month. Most
recently, Nathan Cirillo was 'assassinated' while standing guard at a
war memorial in downtown Ottawa.
I can only imagine some of the conspiracy theories you may have come
across regarding this attack, so I won't offer any idle speculation on
the subject.
All I have for you are a few clips taken from the news coverage and
some curious notes about the events of the day.
First, find attached a clip of Gille Michaud (Assistant Commisioner -
RCMP National Division) saying "We conduct scenario-based training to
cover off all kinds of threats, including what we've seen in Ottawa
today."
While context suggests "what we've seen today" refers to the
"threats", he could also be referring to the "scenario-based
training". Might this be an accidentaly honest flub admitting that
this was just a drill?
Second, I've a clip of Jim Watson (Mayor of Ottawa) saying that
answers "will come from our dedicated policing forces; the RCMP, the
Ottawa police services, and no doubt other forces as we construct this
tragic course of events."
Is it just me, or does 'constructing a tragic course of events' sound
a bit like an admission that the whole story is bull crap that is
being made up as they go along?
Third, Greta Levy (an NDP staffer) and John McKay (a Liberal MP) both
offered eye-witness accounts to the media of what they witnessed.
Levy's is long and boring, with many small details that might be
important if the narrative changes [I had to remove the attachment due
to size limits. There's a link at the bottom, if you're interested].
McKay's is short and, while I
chuckled hearing him say 'wearing a hoodie, carrying a gun', his
question of how a man ostensibly running toward the Hall of Honor
carrying a large rifle (or was it a shotgun?) was allowed unimpeded
access into the core of the building without encountering security is
quite valid.
Last, and (if correct) most importantly, in a broadcast from an
'undisclosed location', Stephen Harper (Canadian Prime Minister)
seemed to be throwing some messaging at any safe havens
*cough*Pakistan*cough* that might be sheltering ISIL and other
terrorist groups.
Considering the resistance he has been facing in the House of Commons
over Canada's military involvement in Obama's coalition, this event
couldn't haven happened at a better time. The Conservatives should
have no trouble rallying support for air strikes in Syria (and
Pakistan?) in the near future.
Another coincidence has to do with the watered-down Anti-Terrorism
bill that was to be tabled today in the House of Commons. The
Opposition has been chipping away at Harper's AT-bill for months, and
what was to be tabled today wouldn't give the government half of the
powers they were after when first drafting the bill. Unfortunately,
Parliament was shut down before the bill could be presented. Somehow I
imagine it will be revised back to full civil-liberty-destroying
strength by the time it is presented again.
That's all I've got on this. I hope some of it was interesting to you.
Thanks again for all you do.
-Jay Wall
Links:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=XrGqoISd-do
-Globe and Mail reporter films police sweep on smartphone
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zy8acMKab1A
-Prime Minister Sweatervest's full speech
http://parlvu.parl.gc.ca/parlvu/DayView.aspx?date=20141022&lang=en
-'No voting until the terrorism is finished"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gto8gl_Lk00
-Greta Levy eyewitness account
http://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=474681&playlistId=1.2066359&binId=1.810401&playlistPageNum=1&binPageNum=1
-CTV News report on shooting
Meanwhile in Chicago:
Adam:
A few people are shot and one killed in Ottawa and the media has lost its fucking mind, covering it like it's 9/11 or 7/7.
As you know I live in Chicago where last night more people were shot and killed than in Ottawa today. While CNN continues its wall-to-wall coverage of Ottawa, they have not said a word about the terrorism that occurs in Chicago neighborhoods every day (well here in the gayborhood there aren't many murders).
The weekend of September 28-29 saw 43 people wounded and 5 killed in Chicago:
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2014/09/29/five-killed-43-wounded-in-weekend-shootings-in-chicago/
National media never reported it.
This past weekend, October 18-19, there were 3 killed and 19 wounded in shootings:
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2014/10/20/3-dead-19-wounded-in-weekend-shootings/
National media never mentioned it.
Terrorism is a government and news media that intentionally ignores an epidemic of young men and women being senselessly murdered, a government that oppresses the urban poor through inferior, inadequate schools, hard to access social services & neighborhoods that are food deserts. Terrorism is willfully allowing the urban poor in America to be murdered by the thousands each year and ignoring it but demanding major reforms on a national level when a middle class kid shoots up his school; reforms that do nothing to address or eradicate the senseless deaths among the urban poor.
Here is a good site which provides the most current statistical data on the number of shot & wounded and shot & killed in Chicago:
http://heyjackass.com/category/2014-chicago-crime-murder-stats/
October to Date
Shot & Killed: 18
Shot & Wounded: 142
Total Shot: 160
Total Homicides: 21
Those numbers are troubling to say the least, yet the national media hasn't said a word about it.
Instead, when one person is killed and a few are shot in Ottawa the media fires up the fear porn machine and tries to convince everyone watching that they might be next. Fuck the media and fuck the U.S. government.
Apologies for the rant...
All my best,
Brian
'Parliament Hill Is Under Attack' - Atlantic Mobile
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 17:41
Chris Wattie/Reuters
Government buildings on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada, are on lockdown Wednesday morning as police continue to search for a suspect after a series of shootings in the heart of the capital. One member of the Canadian Armed Force was killed, as was one of the gunmen, but at least one other shooter is believed to be involved and on the loose.
The incident began after a shooter opened fire just before 10 a.m. EDT, killing one military officer. Reports indicate the victim is a Canadian military member who was standing guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, near the National War Memorial. He was taken to the hospital with injuries, where he later died. Two other patients were taken to the hospital and are in stable condition.
Police officers arrived quickly to lock down Parliament, asking anyone remaining in the building and surrounding area to lay on the ground as authorities search the building. The CBC reports dozens of soldiers are patrolling the exterior of the building.
Shot from inside caucus room after shooting, @grahamctvAn eyewitness told The Globe and Mail that the shooter ''got away'' after the first shooting at the Memorial, and described the suspect as having long, dark hair. Another eyewitness told the CBC that the shooter is male, tall, thin, wearing a black-and-white headscarf, and carrying a long gun.
The suspect's car remains on site, parked at the entrance of the War Memorial. It did not have license plates. A third witness believed that there are two suspects, one wearing a long brown coat with black hair and a bandana, and a second who stayed in the car.
"We were standing nearby the monuments, we were waiting there for a city tour and I heard four [rapid] shots," that witness told the CBC. "Suddenly I saw a small guy with long black hair, looked like a Native American to me, and he ran away after the shots toward Parliament Hill. Then I saw some military running to the monuments then to Parliament Hill chasing the man." This witness confirmed that the shooter targeted a monument guard and that the gun was quite long.
Others report indicate that there were as many as 30 to 40 shots; however, this could be due to an exchanging of gunfire with police. In a video taken from inside the Parliament Hill building obtained by The Globe and Mail, roughly 24 shots are heard. "The video has too many shots to determine the type of weapon. Not unlikely it is a rifle though," a member of the Canadian military told me on the condition of anonymity. "You don't pre-plan an attack like this with only a pistol effective at a range of 50 meters."
At 10:53 a.m., a reporter for the CBC was told that gunmen were on the roof of a building on the Hill with "brandished weapons." That reporter also noted that there is a heavily wooded area near Parliament Hill, and at least one gunman appears to be moving east away from the shooting location.
Just before noon, another shooting was reported across the river from Parliament Hill at the Rideau Centre. Police confirmed that shooting, but have not commented on any injuries or deaths at the scene.
There have been three shootings in total today, all within a mile of one another: Parliament Hill, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and Rideau Centre Mall. An employee at Kiehl's, a shop within the mall, who answered the phone said they were calm and listening to the news. They said employees were "fine" following the shooting. An evacuation plan has not yet been announced by authorities for those within the mall.
Members of Parliament were meeting in their party caucuses when the shooting broke out. Some staff and members of the media inside Parliament Hill were allowed to leave, ducking while running out of the building. Prime Minister Stephen Harper's safety was confirmed early on, and he was taken away from Parliament Hill. Harper was set to meet with Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai in Toronto today, but all his public events have been canceled.
The University of Ottawa has been put on lockdown, as have public schools in the area. Military bases across the entire country have been closed to the public. The Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C. is also under lockdown as a precaution. An all-clear has not been given as police and military on the scene stress the ongoing danger of the situation.
Authorities in Canada have not yet commented on whether they believe the shooting today was an act of terrorism. The CBC has reported that witnesses heard shouts of "Iraq" throughout the buildings, however, police were unable to comment on or confirm this claim. Jean-Christophe de Le Rue, a spokesman for the public safety minister, told the Associated Press that the domestic terror threat level was increased from low to medium just hours before the shooting occurred, due to "an increase in general chatter from radical Islamist organizations."
The Canadian military member I spoke with provided more information on the memorial: "A few weeks before November 11 (Veterans Day, known also in Canada as Remembrance Day), we send soldiers to ceremoniously guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War II, the War Memorial. So the soldier that got shot had his rifle with him and was standing at attention, no means for defense at all'--rifle obviously unloaded," He also speculated on the potential motive of the shooter, "The irony that his blood was on the War Memorial is unbelievable. It's heavily symbolic if it is terrorism related."
Over the weekend, a hit-and-run accident in Quebec, which resulted in the death of one military member and the injury of another, is being investigated as a a possible terrorist incident. Police later shot and killed the suspect, who authorities believe was "radicalized."
At the White House, press secretary Josh Earnest said President Obama had been briefed on the incident in the Oval Office on Wednesday and sent the ''thoughts and prayers of everyone here at the White House'' to those affected in Canada.''The details are still sketchy, which is not unusual in a chaotic situation like this one,'' Earnest said. He said officials had reached out to schedule a call between Obama and Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
The police department will offer comments to the press today at 1:20 p.m. ET.
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.
Next ArticlePolly Mosendz is an associate editor at The Atlantic, where she covers breaking news.
War on Twitter
Is this perhaps what is fueling #gamergate?
Leo all in as well
Caliphate!
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
HMFIC dissectio of parachute drop
In the Morning!
Was watching NBC news as I was over at a family members house for dinner and saw the report about the US air drop that was apparently mistakenly dropped near and recovered by ISIS fighters where they claimed ISIS fighters are now in possession of a large quantity of US hand grenades.
One problem, the grenades shown in the crate in the video are so horribly fake I started laughing out loud earning me strange looks from my aunt and uncle who are “all in” on the ISIS fear bukkake.
In the Army one of my additional skills is an Explosive Ordnance Clearance Agent, so I am somewhat of an expert on US and foreign ordnance, however this fakery is so bad even a cherry ass private fresh from Basic Training could point it out.
At around 50 seconds in to the video at this link: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/10/21/isis-video-america-s-air-dropped-weapons-now-in-our-hands.html
You see him open a crate containing supposed hand grenades thrown in there loose.
A few problems:
1. Live grenades would NEVER EVER be transported loose in a crate like that. All grenades come from the factory encased in foam and packed in a cylindrical tube. They are not unpacked from that until ready to be used.
2. The bottom of the grenade body has a hole in it because IT IS HOLLOW
3. There are no fuses installed on the neck. No fuse, no spoon, no pin, etc.
4. The grenade bodies have been spray painted a different shade of green
What those grenades are are training versions of the MKII “Pineapple” grenade which was completely phased out of service by 1970 and are not even used for training anymore. Training grenade bodies are stored in crates like the one in the video loose. Looks like someone grabbed the grenade training kit from an old supply room.
Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mk_2_grenade
How these work is you take the grenade body and screw in a pre-manufactured fuse at the top that inserts a fire cracker down into the body of the grenade. You pull the pin, throw it and the spoon flies of to ignite the time delay fuse and 3-5 seconds later “POP”. Bout as dangerous as a chinese new year fire cracker.
Also, the grenades seen at 1:41 in the video are M30 Practice Grenades, the training version of the M26 frag grenade which replaced the MKII
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M26_grenade
Of note, look at how he just had to go undo a simple latch on an old wooden crate to open the crate. That is, again, how training grenades are stored.
Even though I did not get a good look at the RPG warheads pictured, the packing and crating is just not how live ordnance would be packaged ESPECIALLY for an air drop.
Looks to me like someone cleaned out the TASC (Training And Support Center) at an Army post for inert training ordnance to drop to ISIS to hype up the fear while not actually giving them anything.
Humbly submitted for your review
Sincerely,
Sir HMFIC, Black Knight of the US Army
I would also point out some issues with the parachute. It is not your standard circular air drop chute. It is a steerable chute much like the parafoil design used by sky divers and special operations forces for precision flight path and touchdown. It is controlled by GPS to deliver the payload to the intended drop location.
Perhaps the GPS “malfunctioned” and caused the drop to steer into ISIS held territory?
U.S. Humanitarian Aid Going to ISIS - The Daily Beast
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 23:26
EXCLUSIVE10.19.14
Not only are foodstuffs, medical supplies'--even clinics'--going to ISIS, the distribution networks are paying ISIS 'taxes' and putting ISIS people on their payrolls.
GAZIANTEP, Turkey'--While U.S. warplanes strike at the militants of the so-called Islamic State in both Syria and Iraq, truckloads of U.S. and Western aid has been flowing into territory controlled by the jihadists, assisting them to build their terror-inspiring ''caliphate.''
The aid'--mainly food and medical equipment'--is meant for Syrians displaced from their hometowns, and for hungry civilians. It is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, European donors, and the United Nations. Whether it continues is now the subject of anguished debate among officials in Washington and European. The fear is that stopping aid would hurt innocent civilians and would be used for propaganda purposes by the militants, who would likely blame the West for added hardship.
The Bible says if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him something to drink'--doing so will ''heap burning coals'' of shame on his head. But there is no evidence that the militants of the Islamic State, widely known as ISIS or ISIL, feel any sense of disgrace or indignity (and certainly not gratitude) receiving charity from their foes.
Quite the reverse, the aid convoys have to pay off ISIS emirs (leaders) for the convoys to enter the eastern Syrian extremist strongholds of Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor, providing yet another income stream for ISIS militants, who are funding themselves from oil smuggling, extortion, and the sale of whatever they can loot, including rare antiquities from museums and archaeological sites.
''The convoys have to be approved by ISIS and you have to pay them: The bribes are disguised and itemized as transportation costs,'' says an aid coordinator who spoke to The Daily Beast on the condition he not be identified in this article. The kickbacks are either paid by foreign or local nongovernmental organizations tasked with distributing the aid, or by the Turkish or Syrian transportation companies contracted to deliver it.
''What are we doing here helping their fighters, who we are bombing, to be treated so they can fight again?''
And there are fears the aid itself isn't carefully monitored enough, with some sold off on the black market or used by ISIS to win hearts and minds by feeding its fighters and its subjects. At a minimum, the aid means ISIS doesn't have to divert cash from its war budget to help feed the local population or the displaced persons, allowing it to focus its resources exclusively on fighters and war-making, say critics of the aid.
One of the striking differences between ISIS and terror groups of the past is its desire to portray the territory it has conquered as a well-organized and smoothly functioning state. ''The soldiers of Allah do not liberate a village, town, or city, only to abandon its residents and ignore their needs,'' declares the latest issue of Dabiq, the group's slick online magazine. Elsewhere in the publication are pictures of slaughtered Kurdish soldiers and a gruesome photograph of American journalist Steven Sotloff's severed head resting on top of his body. But this article shows ISIS restoring electricity in Raqqah, running a home for the elderly, a cancer-treatment facility in Ninawa, and cleaning streets in other towns.
Last year, a polio outbreak in Deir ez-Zor raised concerns throughout the region about the spread of an epidemic. The World Health Organization worked with the Syrian government and with opposition groups to try to carry out an immunization campaign. This has continued. In response to a query by The Daily Beast, a WHO spokesperson said, ''Our information indicates that vaccination campaigns have been successfully carried out by local health workers in IS-controlled territory.''
''I am alarmed that we are providing support for ISIS governance,'' says Jonathan Schanzer, a Mideast expert with the Washington D.C.-based think tank Foundation for Defense of Democracies. ''By doing so we are indemnifying the militants by satisfying the core demands of local people, who could turn on ISIS if they got frustrated.''
U.S. and Western relief agencies have been caught before in an aid dilemma when it comes to the war on terror. Last December, the Overseas Development Institute, an independent British think tank focusing on international development and humanitarian issues, reported that aid agencies in Somalia had been paying militants from the al Qaeda offshoot al-Shabab for access to areas under their control during the 2011 famine.
Al-Shabab demanded from the agencies what it described as ''registration fees'' of up to $10,000. And in many cases al-Shabab insisted on distributing the aid, keeping much of it for itself, according to ODI. The think tank cited al-Shabab's diversion of food aid in the town of Baidoa, where it kept between half and two-thirds of the food for its own fighters. The researchers noted the al Qaeda affiliate developed a highly sophisticated system of monitoring and co-opting the aid agencies, even setting up a ''Humanitarian Co-ordination Office.''
Something similar appears to be underway now in the Syrian provinces of Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor.
Aid coordinators with NGOs partnering USAID and other Western government agencies, including Britain's Department for International Development, say ISIS insist that the NGOs, foreign and local, employ people ISIS approves on their staffs inside Syria. ''There is always at least one ISIS person on the payroll; they force people on us,'' says an aid coordinator. ''And when a convoy is being prepared, the negotiations go through them about whether the convoy can proceed. They contact their emirs and a price is worked out. We don't have to wrangle with individual ISIS field commanders once approval is given to get the convoy in, as the militants are highly hierarchical.'' He adds: ''None of the fighters will dare touch it, if an emir has given permission.''
That isn't the case with other Syrian rebel groups, where arguments over convoys can erupt at checkpoints at main entry points into Syria, where aid is unloaded from Turkish tractor-trailers and re-loaded into Syrian ones.
Many aid workers are uncomfortable with what's happening. ''A few months ago we delivered a mobile clinic for a USAID-funded NGO,'' says one, who declined to be named. ''A few of us debated the rights and wrongs of this. The clinic was earmarked for the treatment of civilians, but we all know that wounded ISIS fighters could easily be treated as well. So what are we doing here helping their fighters, who we are bombing, to be treated so they can fight again?''
What becomes even more bizarre is that while aid is still going into ISIS-controlled areas, only a little is going into Kurdish areas in northeast Syria. About every three or four months there is a convoy into the key city of Qamishli. Syrian Kurds, who are now defending Kobani with the support of U.S. warplanes, have long complained about the lack of international aid. Last November, tellingly, Syrian Kurds complained that Syria's Kurdistan was not included in a U.N. polio-vaccination campaign. U.N. agencies took the position that polio vaccines should go through the Syrian Red Crescent via Damascus when it came to the Kurds.
The origins of the aid programs pre-date President Barack Obama's decision to ''degrade and defeat'' ISIS, but they have carried on without major review. The aid push was to reach anyone in need. A senior State Department official with detailed knowledge of current aid programs confirmed to The Daily Beast that U.S. government funded relief is still going into Raqqa and Deir Ez-Zor. He declined to estimate the quantity. But an aid coordinator, when asked, responded: ''A lot.''
The State Department official said he, too, was conflicted about the programs. ''Is this helping the militants by allowing them to divert money they would have to spend on food? If aid wasn't going in, would they let people starve? And is it right for us to withhold assistance and punish civilians? Would the militants turn around, as al-Shabab did when many agencies withdrew from Somalia, and blame the West for starvation and hunger? Are we helping indirectly the militants to build their caliphate? I wrestle with this.''
Western NGO partners of USAID and other Western agencies declined to respond to Daily Beast inquiries about international relief going to ISIS areas, citing the complexity of the issue and noting its delicacy.
Mideast analyst Schanzer dismisses the notion that ISIS can use an aid shutdown as leverage in its PR campaign: ''I think this is false. In areas they control, everyone understands they are a brutal organization. This is their basic weakness and by pushing in aid we are curtailing the chances of an internal revolt, which is the best chance you have of bringing down ISIS.''
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
AP News : Lebanon pulled into war with Islamic State group
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:24
By ZEINA KARAM and BASSEM MROUEPublished: Oct 18, 2014In this Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014 photo, Hamza Hommos, 55, father of Lebanese policeman Wael Hommos, who was kidnapped by Islamic State militants and the Nusra Front, speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in front of his tent set up for their sit-in protest in downtown Beirut, Lebanon. With all eyes on the Islamic State group's onslaught in Iraq and Syria, a less conspicuous but potentially just as explosive frontline with the extremists is emerging in Lebanon, where Lebanese soldiers and Shiite Hezbollah guerrillas are increasingly pulled into deadly fighting with the Sunni militants along the country's border with Syria. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)BEIRUT (AP) - With all eyes on the Islamic State group's onslaught in Iraq and Syria, a less conspicuous but potentially just as explosive front line with the extremists is emerging in Lebanon, where Lebanese soldiers and Shiite Hezbollah guerrillas are increasingly pulled into deadly fighting with the Sunni militants along the country's border with Syria.
The U.S. has been speeding up delivery of small ammunition to shore up Lebanon's army, but recent cross-border attacks and beheading of Lebanese soldiers by Islamic State fighters - and the defection of four others to the extremists - has sent shockwaves across this Mediterranean country, eliciting fear of a potential slide into the kind of militant, sectarian violence afflicting both Syria and Iraq, and increasingly prompting minorities to take up arms.
The crisis was slow in coming.
For long, Lebanon managed to miraculously avoid the all-out chaos gripping neighboring countries - despite sporadic street clashes and car bombings, and despite being awash with weapons and taking in an endless stream of refugees from Syria who now constitute a staggering one third of its population of 4.5 million people.
Unlike in Syria or Iraq, the al-Qaida-breakaway Islamic State group does not hold territory in Lebanon. But along with Syria's al-Qaida affiliate, the Nusra Front, it has established footholds in remote mountains along Lebanon's remote eastern border, from where it launches almost daily incursions further afield.
Jihadi recruitment in impoverished Sunni areas of northern Lebanon is on the rise, and black Islamic State group flags fly freely in some areas, reflecting pockets of growing support for the radical group.
"Lebanon is in the eye of the storm," said Fadia Kiwan, a political science professor at Beirut's St. Joseph University.
The Lebanese are bitterly divided over Syria's civil war. Hezbollah fighters have gone to join Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces in their battle against Sunni rebels, drawing anger at home from Lebanon's Sunnis and stoking Sunni-Shiite tensions. This in turn led to tit-for-tat suicide bombings and several rounds of street clashes in Lebanon in the past year.
The Islamic State group threat first came to Lebanon in August, two months after the group's summer blitz in which it seized large swaths of territory in Iraq and Syria. In a surprise attack, Islamic State group and Nusra Front militants crossed over from Syria and overran the predominantly Sunni Lebanese border town of Arsal, hitting Lebanese army positions and killing nearly 20 soldiers.
After weeklong clashes, the militants pulled back to mountain caves near Syria's border, taking more than 20 Lebanese soldiers and policemen with them.
Islamic State fighters have since beheaded two Lebanese soldiers. Nusra Front militants have shot dead a third. In return for remaining hostages, they have issued various demands, including the withdrawal of Hezbollah troops from Syria, and the release of Islamists from Lebanese prisons.
Lebanese army commander Jean Kahwaji said in comments published this week that the militants from Syria want to ignite civil war and create a passage to Lebanon's coastline by linking the Syrian Qalamoun mountains with Arsal on the border and the northern Lebanese town of Akkar, an impoverished Sunni area.
Analysts agree that in Lebanon, the Islamic State group fighters also see an opportunity to strike at Hezbollah's patron, the Shiite powerhouse Iran but that they are not too eager to immediately embark on yet another war.
"The territory of Lebanon is a longer-term goal," said David Schenker, director of the program on Arab politics at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
But there are fears that eventually, Schenker said, the Islamic State group could stage a spectacular bombing of, for example, the Hezbollah stronghold of Dahyeh south of Beirut, recreating an incident similar to a 2006 attack in the Iraqi city of Samarra, and "unleash this incredible sectarian tension that results in a resumption of civil war."
In Samarra, the Sunni extremists bombed a major Shiite shrine, setting in motion two years of sectarian bloodletting that pushed Iraq to the brink of civil war. Lebanon is still recovering from a 15-year civil war that ended in 1990.
The global war against Islamic State group and its attacks in Lebanon have somewhat bolstered Hezbollah's narrative that its intervention in Syria was necessary to ward off a Sunni extremist threat to Lebanon.
Paradoxically, it has brought Hezbollah closer to Christians and other Lebanese minorities through their shared fear of the Sunni militants. But the Lebanese Shiite group is hated by most Lebanese Sunnis, many of whom refer to Hezbollah as the "Party of Satan" - a dark play on Hezbollah's name, which in English means "Party of God."
In addition to being bogged down in the fighting in Syria, Hezbollah is increasingly embroiled in clashes inside Lebanon. In an unprecedented attack, Nusra Front fighters overran positions manned by Hezbollah along the Syrian border last week, killing eight of its fighters in battles that lasted several hours.
"Such attacks not only erode the stature of Hezbollah, they show it to be vulnerable. I think in the long run or as the months go by we're going to see more and more of this," Schenker said.
In a rare excursion outside his underground bunkers, Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah traveled to the Bekaa Valley in eastern Lebanon last week to meet his fighters, Hezbollah official Mohammad Afif said - an apparent move to boost their morale.
"Hezbollah entered a battle that is bigger than Lebanon," said Kiwan, the political science professor. "Today, Hezbollah is obliged to continue in the battle that it started."
Along with the Lebanese army, Hezbollah is fighting almost daily incursions by Islamic State group militants in Bekaa, prompting accusations that the army is collaborating with the Shiite guerrilla against the Lebanese Sunnis, placing the army in the thick of the Sunni-Shiite confrontation.
Adding to the deadly mix, four Lebanese soldiers, all Sunnis from north Lebanon, have deserted from the army and joined either the IS or the Nusra Front since July.
One of the deserters, Abdallah Shehadeh, said in a video posted online by Nusra Front this week that he had initially "enlisted in the army to defend the Lebanese people" - only to find that the army is a "Hezbollah tool."
Though a handful of desertions do not pose an imminent risk to the stature of Lebanon's military, such publicized statements may eventually hurt it and make the recruitment of Sunni conscripts more difficult, analysts say.
Because of the Lebanese Sunni-Shiite divisions and the pro- and anti-Assad split, the civil war in Syria has completely paralyzed the government in Beirut. Lebanon has been without a president since May, and parliament is set to postpone elections for the second time, ostensibly because the security situation makes it impossible to hold a vote.
Moreover, the government faces escalating protests by families of the captive soldiers and policemen who have blocked roads and set up protest tents, including several pitched last week near the government building that blocked traffic in Beirut's commercial center. They families accuse the government of not doing enough to secure the freedom of their loved ones.
"We hope that the state (of Lebanon) will do something that restores its dignity," said Layal Dirani, the sister of policeman Suleiman Dirani, who was taken captive by the Nusra Front on Aug. 2.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Boerka weer welkom in Australisch parlement
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:39
De veiligheidsmaatregel van begin deze maand leidde tot veel ophef. Volgens critici was sprake van discriminatie.
Voorzitter van de Senaat Stephen Parry zei dat de maatregel was ingesteld omdat er geruchten waren dat een groep mensen met sluiers zou protesteren in het parlement. De maatregel was volgens hem van tijdelijke aard.
TerreurdreigingHet was sowieso maar de vraag hoeveel bezoekers van het parlement gedupeerd zouden worden door de veiligheidsmaatregel. Premier Tony Abbott erkende eerder dat voor zover bekend nog nooit iemand had geprobeerd het gebouw in Canberra te betreden in een gezichtsbedekkend gewaad. Australi telt ongeveer een half miljoen moslims, ruim 2 procent van de bevolking.
De maatregel was ingegaan in een periode dat Australi bezorgd is over jihadisten. Halverwege september verhoogde Australi zijn dreigingsniveau voor aanslagen van 'medium' naar 'hoog' vanwege het gevaar dat Australische aanhangers van Islamitische Staat vormen voor de binnenlandse veiligheid.
Australi sloot zich enige tijd geleden aan bij de strijd tegen IS in Irak.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ebola
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
disease in place
On Tue, October 21, 2014 1:13 pm, Bart Olsen wrote:
Most likely this is nothing, but on last Sundays show, Oct 19 #663, at 24
minutes in, you were playing an Obama clip about broken travel and no
travel ban. He used the phrase “with a disease in place”. That term is
commonly used when we are the one placing something, like “the troops
are
in place”. It made it sound like it was a strategy. I just found it
curious.
Bart
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lets just state the obvious: Ron Klain's rug is more offensive than Ebola
Klain is DEFEINITELY a pharma insider:
So next look for Steve Case to be given the contract to automate the healthcare system?
Recall the jpg (attached) that I previously sent you that shows the relationship from the Advisory Board Company (and then to Chopra)
There is a link to Revolution Health Care, which is turn is linked to Revolution LLC (both Steve Case companies)
One of the other co-founders of Revolution LLC is a guy named Donn Davis, which is based in part in Costa Rica
see
http://investing.businessweek.com/businessweek/research/stocks/private/relationship.asp?personId=132405&privcapId=8159277&previousCapId=21975420&previousTitle=Revolution%20LLC
which in turn is related to Revolution Resorts LLC and on the board of this company is
Christine Varney (US Trade rep)
Franklin Raines "He cooked the books at Fannie to increase his compensation (more than $90 million)." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franklin_Raines)
Carly Fiorina (enough said)
and a host of others
http://investing.businessweek.com/businessweek/research/stocks/private/relationship.asp?personId=132405&privcapId=8159277&previousCapId=21975420&previousTitle=Revolution%20LLC
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
China's companies, billionaires must step up to fight Ebola: WFP
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:16
China's companies, billionaires must step up to fight Ebola: WFPTop News
China's companies, billionaires must step up to fight Ebola: WFP
Mon, Oct 20 09:36 AM BST
By Megha Rajagopalan
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's corporations and billionaires have lagged behind in contributions to fighting the Ebola epidemic in West Africa despite vast economic ties to the region, the World Food Programme said on Monday.
An Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the worst on record, has killed more than 4,000 people. China has contributed about $40 million in aid to fight the disease, including $6 million to the World Food Programme.
"Where are the Chinese billionaires and their potential impact? Because this is the time that they could really have such a huge impact," said Brett Rierson, the organization's representative in China, at a briefing.
"You can ask the same thing of the corporate sector, being the largest investors in West Africa right now."
Sihuan Pharmaceutical Holdings Group Ltd., a Chinese drug maker with military ties, has sent several thousand doses of an experimental Ebola drug to Africa and is planning clinical trials there.
China has also sent hundreds of aid workers to Africa to help.
Dudley Thomas, Liberia's ambassador to China, told Reuters his country had secured one donation of $100,000 from a large Chinese construction firm that has projects in the country, but few other contributions.
He added Liberia's government was in talks with other large Chinese investors, including the state-owned China-Africa Development Fund, a private equity fund focusing facilitating investment between China and Africa.
Liberia had set up a fund for Ebola donations, he said.
China's donation to the World Food Programme would be used to provide staple foods in the three hardest-hit countries, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia, Rierson said.
That puts China among the top donors to the organization for combating Ebola. The United States contributed $12.67 million and Japan gave $6 million, Rierson said.
The World Food Programme said it had only raised about a third of what it needs for the anti-Ebola fight.
About a million Chinese nationals live in Africa, with about 10,000 in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
Mao Qun'an, a spokesman for China's National Health and Family Planning Commission, said in addition to sending aid to affected countries, China has been training doctors in public hospitals in handling Ebola cases.
China has also toughened health checks at airports in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, he added.
"If they come across a person running a fever or with other possible symptoms of Ebola, they will be taken directly to a local hospital," Mao said. "These entry points are key."
China has not implemented any restrictions on travel to and from affected countries.
(Reporting By Megha Rajagopalan; Editing by Nick Macfie)
China's companies, billionaires must step up to fight Ebola: WFPTop News
China's companies, billionaires must step up to fight Ebola: WFP
Mon, Oct 20 09:36 AM BST
By Megha Rajagopalan
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's corporations and billionaires have lagged behind in contributions to fighting the Ebola epidemic in West Africa despite vast economic ties to the region, the World Food Programme said on Monday.
An Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the worst on record, has killed more than 4,000 people. China has contributed about $40 million in aid to fight the disease, including $6 million to the World Food Programme.
"Where are the Chinese billionaires and their potential impact? Because this is the time that they could really have such a huge impact," said Brett Rierson, the organization's representative in China, at a briefing.
"You can ask the same thing of the corporate sector, being the largest investors in West Africa right now."
Sihuan Pharmaceutical Holdings Group Ltd., a Chinese drug maker with military ties, has sent several thousand doses of an experimental Ebola drug to Africa and is planning clinical trials there.
China has also sent hundreds of aid workers to Africa to help.
Dudley Thomas, Liberia's ambassador to China, told Reuters his country had secured one donation of $100,000 from a large Chinese construction firm that has projects in the country, but few other contributions.
He added Liberia's government was in talks with other large Chinese investors, including the state-owned China-Africa Development Fund, a private equity fund focusing facilitating investment between China and Africa.
Liberia had set up a fund for Ebola donations, he said.
China's donation to the World Food Programme would be used to provide staple foods in the three hardest-hit countries, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia, Rierson said.
That puts China among the top donors to the organization for combating Ebola. The United States contributed $12.67 million and Japan gave $6 million, Rierson said.
The World Food Programme said it had only raised about a third of what it needs for the anti-Ebola fight.
About a million Chinese nationals live in Africa, with about 10,000 in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
Mao Qun'an, a spokesman for China's National Health and Family Planning Commission, said in addition to sending aid to affected countries, China has been training doctors in public hospitals in handling Ebola cases.
China has also toughened health checks at airports in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, he added.
"If they come across a person running a fever or with other possible symptoms of Ebola, they will be taken directly to a local hospital," Mao said. "These entry points are key."
China has not implemented any restrictions on travel to and from affected countries.
(Reporting By Megha Rajagopalan; Editing by Nick Macfie)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
allAfrica.com: Nigeria Has Defeated Ebola - WHO
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:28
By Sola Ogundipe, Favour Nnabugwu, Olasunkanmi Akoni, Chioma Obinna, Victoria Ojeme and Gabriel OlawaleABUJA--In what has been described as a spectacular success story that shows that Ebola can be contained, the World Health Organisation, WHO, has officially declared Nigeria an Ebola-free nation, urging other countries currently faced with the challenge
of contending with the epidemic to learn from Nigeria's experience.
Announcing the declaration through its representative in Abuja, Rui Gama Vaz, the global health body said after six weeks (42 days) with no new cases, Nigeria is now free from Ebola.
WHO pointed out that the story of how Nigeria ended what many believed to be potentially the most explosive Ebola outbreak imaginable is worth telling in detail.
This came as President Goodluck Jonathan urged a sustained war against the disease. Also, outgoing Minister of Health, Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu described the declaration as a major milestone of the present administration.
Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, also commended the Federal, Lagos and Rivers State governments over the feat, saying it would change the negative perception of the country by the outside world.
Nigeria Ebola free -- WHO
"Today, October 20, Nigeria reached that 42-day mark and is now considered free of Ebola transmission," WHO noted in a statement, in which it also commended the Federal Government's strong leadership and effective coordination of the response that included the rapid establishment of an Emergency Operations Centre.
The Ebola virus was introduced into Nigeria on July 20, 2014, when an infected Liberian, (Patrick Sawyer) arrived Lagos aboard an Asky Air flight and died in hospital five days later, setting off a chain of transmissions that infected a total of 20 people, of which eight died.
According to WHO recommendations, the end of an Ebola virus disease outbreak in a country can be declared once 42 days have passed and no new cases have been detected. The 42 days represents twice the maximum incubation period for Ebola (21 days). This 42-day period starts from the last day that any person in the country had contact with a confirmed or probable Ebola case.
When the first Ebola case was confirmed in July, health officials immediately repurposed technologies and infrastructure from WHO and other partners to help find cases and track potential chains of transmission of Ebola virus disease.
WHO, United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), M(C)decins Sans Fronti¨res (MSF), or Doctors Without Borders, UNICEF and other partners supported the Nigerian Government with expertise for outbreak investigation, risk assessment, contact tracing and clinical care.
The body noted that strong public awareness campaigns, teamed with early engagement of traditional, religious and community leaders, also played a key role in successful containment of this outbreak.
Speaking in Abuja, WHO representative, Rui Gama Vaz, who urged other countries to learn from Nigeria said an aggressive government response and effective contact tracing helped keep the virus in check in Nigeria.
Be vigilant
"I will like to take this opportunity on behalf of the WHO Director-General, Margaret Chan, to congratulate the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria through President Goodluck Jonathan. Many wealthy countries, with outstanding health systems, may have something to learn as well," Vaz said, warning that Nigeria must continue to remain vigilant for any suspected case and adhere strictly to WHO guidelines.
A picture taken in Oshodi Heritage park in Lagos on October 20, 2014 shows an electronic information board on Ebola reading in pidgin English "No Shaking ! We go Chase Ebola Comot" which means "No cause for worry, we will chase Ebola away". Africa's most populous nation Nigeria was on Monday declared officially Ebola free but warned that it remained vulnerable as long as the virus was raging elsewhere in west Africa. The country representative of the World Health Organization, Rui Gama Vaz, said 42 days -- or two incubation periods of 21 days -- had elapsed without any new confirmed cases of the deadly virus. AFP PHOTO
The WHO representative noted: "While the outbreak now is officially over, Nigeria's geographic positions and extensive borders make the country vulnerable to additional imported cases of the Ebola Virus Disease. It is therefore, necessary to continue vigilance for any suspected cases by strict compliance with the WHO EVD preparedness guidelines.
"Therefore, there is need to continue to work together with all states to ensure adequate preparedness and rapid response in case of any potential re-importation. It must be clear that the war has not ended, the war will only end when West Africa is also declared free of Ebola", he reiterated.
Sustain war against Ebola -- Jonathan
Reacting to the announcement, President Jonathan urged a sustained war against the disease as he welcomed the declaration of Nigeria as Ebola-free by WHO.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Dr Reuben Abati, the President dedicated the certification to patriotic health workers, volunteers and ordinary Nigerians who supported government to defeat the virus.
Jonathan noted that the country's globally-acclaimed success against Ebola was a testimony to what Nigerians could achieve if they set aside their differences and work together.
"President Jonathan welcomes today's declaration by the World Health Organisation that Nigeria is now officially Ebola-free after 42 days without any incidence of the Ebola Virus Disease.
"He dedicates the certification to the many patriotic health workers, volunteers and ordinary Nigerians who worked tirelessly, some of them paying the ultimate price, to stop the deadly virus in its track after it entered the country in July.
"The President seizes this opportunity to also reiterate his appreciation of the contributions of state governments, WHO and other international health organisations; relatives of infected persons and other Nigerians who either courageously underwent the rigours of being quarantined or complied with all directives issued by health authorities to defeat the virus.
"He believes that Nigeria's globally-acclaimed success against Ebola is a testimony to what Nigerians can achieve if they set aside their differences and work together."
The President urged all Nigerians to remain fully alert and vigilant to guard against a re-entry of the virus.
He shared the view of the WHO that the war will only truly end when West Africa, Africa and the world are declared free of Ebola.
"Health officials should continue to actively screen persons entering the country through its air, land and sea borders for any sign of the virus", the president said. He also urged all Nigerians to continue to follow the anti-Ebola advisories on sanitation and personal hygiene issued by Federal and State Health authorities.
The golden rules against Ebola - Chukwu
On his part, out-going Minister of Health, Prof Onyebuchi Chukwu, said it was possible for any country to control and defeat Ebola for as long as it was in consonance with the golden rules.
He said: "Nigeria has won the battle against Ebola Virus but this world war rages on other fronts in other countries. The war certainly is not over. A reinforced Ebola Virus could still invade Nigeria.
"Given this risk of possible re-infection, there is need to maintain the state of high alertness at all our ports of entry. We cannot afford to lower our guard.
"Nigeria, like other countries, will not have the control over the presentation of the disease at any of its ports of entry.
"However, it is the responsibility of the country's surveillance system to ensure that any case presenting at any of our ports of entry is rapidly identified and isolated.
"That is the only way the country will remain safe from the Ebola Virus Disease pending its global elimination. If any cases emerge in the future, it will be considered by international standards, a separate outbreak. If that happens, Nigeria will be ready and able to confront it exactly as we have done with this outbreak.
"I am indeed gladdened that by divine providence, this declaration coincides with my leaving office as Minister of Health. As the outgoing Minister of Health, this declaration symbolically presents a dignifying seal of the achievements of the Federal Ministry of Health during my tenure as Minister of Health of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
"Several people have asked me what I thought was the most critical success factor in the Nigeria's containment effort against the Ebola Virus Disease outbreak. Undoubtedly, the most critical success factor was leadership -- strong, effective, focused and committed leadership provided by President Goodluck Jonathan himself and replicated at various levels down the ladder.
"I am convinced that without this quality of leadership, it would have been extremely difficult for the EVD outbreak not only to be tamed but to be driven out of Nigeria. Next to leadership is a factor closely linked to leadership: Effective coordination of the various collaborating partners. Under a single leadership, all the contributing partners were moulded into a single, almost homogenous team. This is one factor that may be lacking in the control efforts of other countries. The private sector and the Media also played key role which greatly facilitated the containment of the disease.
"This risk and the risk to other countries can only be eliminated through the setting up of a system similar to the Nigerian one under the leadership of the United Nations but with the operational wing built around ECOWAS. The disease needs to be eliminated from every country of the world. It is only then that each country can heave a sigh of relief.
"As long as there is a case of EVD in any part of the world, every country of the world, every human being on this planet remains at risk."
Lagos pledages N50m to FCMC
In Lagos, the Lagos State Government welcomed the development while disclosing plans to nip in the bud future outbreaks of EVD, even as it said the state may not be out of the woods yet.
Ebola Survivors: Gov. Babatunde Fashola of Lagos(4th left) with survivors of the Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, during a visit to the Governor in Lagos, yesterday. From Right: Dr. Adaora Igonoh, Dennis Akagha, Fashola, Dr. Ibeawuchi Morris, Dr. Fadipe Akinniyi and Dr. Enemuo Kelechi
Disclosing intention to present N50 million to First Consultant Medical Centre, Obalende, where the index case, Mr Patrick Sawyer died as well as undisclosed amounts to other Ebola causalities and survivors in the state as business support gesture, the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, described the outbreak and the eventual containment of Ebola in the state and the country as phenomenal.
Idris, who addressed a joint media conference in Alausa, Ikeja, noted that significantly, till date Nigeria has contributed only 0.22 per cent and 0.18 per cent to global burden of suspected, probable, confirmed cases and deaths respectively.
He explained that 891 cumulative number of contacts were recorded nationally; 365 in Lagos and 526 in Rivers, while contacts that completed 21 days follow-up nationally was 890 -- Lagos 365, and 525 in Rivers. A total of eight deaths recorded in all.
He said the gesture "is with a view to getting people, businesses back on their feet and for businesses to re-secure patronage of their customers."
Health intervention mission to Sierra-Leone
On the planned deployment of health workers to Sierra-Leone, Idris disclosed that the state government had written to the Sierra-Leonian authorities on its intention. According to him, 28 health workers have signified interest and readiness to go and assist in affected countries.
"I use this medium to urge and encourage private organizations who wish to join in this good work to come on board. This is the time to do so, especially those that had earlier indicated interest or made pledges while interested individuals or groups should contact the following help line: 08000-32652-4357 and the website, http://www.ebolaalert.org/." Idris stated.
Atiku , others laud FG, Lagos, Rivers Govts
Meanwhile, former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has commended the successful eradication of Ebola virus disease in Nigeria, saying the feat would change the negative perception of the country by the outside world.
Atiku, in a press statement issued by his media office in Abuja, yesterday, said the federal, Lagos and Rivers State governments should be commended for the remarkable achievement in the face of the grimmest medical crisis that the country found itself dealing with.
He said the successful eradication of Ebola and the declaration of Nigeria as Ebola-free zone was a clear demonstration of the outcome of collaboration, hard work and commitment of the governments of Nigeria, Lagos and Rivers states.
Atiku said he was superbly impressed with the amazing manner Nigeria had proved to the world that it had the will, commitment and human resources to deal with critical challenges of this nature.
He explained that when leaders work together for the common good of the society, there was always a ray of hope for the nation.
The former Vice President also extolled the virtues of the medical personnel during the battle to control the spread of Ebola. He said he was touched by the sacrifices of the medical personnel who sacrificed their lives to save others.
He, however, advised the entire country not to rest on its oars until the last vestiges of the Ebola virus were destroyed.
Atiku said every country must demonstrate the capacity to carry its fate in its hands, instead of relying on the outside world, adding that he was proud Nigeria demonstrated that capacity.
Survivor, Chinyere Enemuo appeals for assistance
However, a survivor of the EVD, Chinyere Enemuo, a sister to late Dr. Ike Enemuo, one of the medical doctors who lost his life to the virus, has raised alarm that the EVD frustrated her wedding plans and virtually destroyed everything in their family.
She, therefore, appealed to the Federal Government to assist her family to overcome the negative effect of the EVD on the family and also support her restart her wedding plans which was disrupted and disorganized due to her contact with the EVD.
How it all started
The Ebola virus entered Lagos July 20, 2014 via an infected Liberian who died five days later. At the airport, he was visibly very ill, lying on the floor while awaiting the flight.
He was said to have vomited during the flight and again in the private car that took him to a private hospital in Lagos. The ECOWAS protocol officer who escorted him later died of Ebola.
At the First Consultant Medical Centre, he told staff that he had malaria and denied any contact with an Ebola patient. It was learnt later that his sister was a confirmed case who had died from the disease in Liberia.
The traveller visited his sister while in hospital and attended her burial ceremony.
As malaria is not transmitted from person to person, no staff at the hospital took protective precautions. Over the coming days, nine doctors and nurses became infected and four of them died.
The virus entered the country's oil hub, Port Harcourt, on August 1, when a close contact of the index case flew there, seeking care from a private physician.
That doctor developed symptoms on August 10 and died of Ebola on August 23. Laboratory tests confirmed the city's first case on August 27.
An investigation undertaken by a team of epidemiologists from the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the Nigeria Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme and the State Ministry of Health, assisted by WHO, revealed an alarming number of high-risk and very high-risk exposures for hundreds of people.
Family Says Nurse Amber Vinson Free Of Ebola : The Two-Way : NPR
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:00
Amber Vinson in a photograph taken earlier this week at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. Officials at Emory University Hospital and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention couldn't detect Ebola in Amber Vinson as of Tuesday evening, her family said in a statement. APhide caption
itoggle caption APAmber Vinson in a photograph taken earlier this week at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. Officials at Emory University Hospital and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention couldn't detect Ebola in Amber Vinson as of Tuesday evening, her family said in a statement.
APA Texas nurse who contracted Ebola while treating Thomas Eric Duncan in a Dallas hospital is now free of the potentially deadly virus, her family says.
Amber Vinson, 29, remains in treatment at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, but her family said in a statement that since Tuesday evening, doctors had been unable to detect traces of the disease in her blood.
"We all know that further treatment will be necessary as Amber continues to regain strength, but these latest developments have truly answered prayers and bring our family one step closer to reuniting with her at home," Vinson's mother, Debra Berry said in a statement.
Vinson traveled to the Akron area Oct. 10-13 to prepare for a wedding and was diagnosed on her return to Dallas. Health officials are monitoring 164 people in Ohio who may have had contact with Vinson for signs of the disease, which has a 21-day incubation period.
Fellow nurse Nina Pham, 26, who along with Vinson contracted Ebola treating Duncan at Texas Health Presbyterian hospital in Dallas, was upgraded to "good" condition earlier this week. She is being treated at a facility at the National Institutes of Health in Maryland.
Ashoka Mukpo, a freelance photojournalist who contracted Ebola while working for NBC News in West Africa and was subsequently flown to Nebraska for treatment, has also tested virus-free, hospital officials said Tuesday.
Shortly after an announcement by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of new measures that would require a three-week monitoring period for anyone arriving in the United States from Ebola-affected Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea, President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he's "cautiously optimistic" about the ability of his Ebola response team to contain the disease inside the U.S.
A new Associated Press-GfK poll released today indicates that most Americans have some confidence that the U.S. health care system will prevent an Ebola epidemic on U.S. soil.
The Associated Press reports:
"Nearly a quarter of Americans are very confident the U.S. health care system could prevent Ebola from spreading widely, and 40 percent are moderately confident."
"But nearly half don't think their local hospital could safely treat an Ebola case, and 31 percent are only moderately confident that it could."
The World Health Organization's latest Ebola situation report says as of the end of Oct. 19, Ebola has caused 4,877 deaths.
Phrases from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:31
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a comic science fiction series created by Douglas Adams that has become popular among fans of the genre(s) and members of the scientific community. Phrases from it are widely recognised and often used in reference to, but outside the context of, the source material. Many writers on popular science, such as Fred Alan Wolf, Paul Davies and Michio Kaku, have used quotations in their books to illustrate facts about cosmology or philosophy.[citation needed]
Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything (42)[edit]In the radio series and the first novel, a group of hyper-intelligent pan-dimensional beings demand to learn the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything from the supercomputer, Deep Thought, specially built for this purpose. It takes Deep Thought 7½ million years to compute and check the answer, which turns out to be 42. Deep Thought points out that the answer seems meaningless because the beings who instructed it never actually knew what the Question was.
When asked to produce The Ultimate Question, Deep Thought says that it cannot; however, it can help to design an even more powerful computer that can. This new computer will incorporate living beings into the "computational matrix" and will run for ten million years. It is revealed as being the planet Earth, with its pan-dimensional creators assuming the form of mice to observe its running. The process is hindered after eight million years by the unexpected arrival on Earth of the Golgafrinchans and then is ruined completely, five minutes before completion, when the Earth is destroyed by the Vogons to make way for a new Hyperspace Bypass. In The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, this is revealed to have been a ruse: the Vogons had been hired to destroy the Earth by a consortium of psychiatrists, led by Gag Halfrunt, who feared for the loss of their careers when the meaning of life became known.[1]
Lacking a real question, the mice decide not to go through the whole thing again and settle for the out-of-thin-air suggestion "How many roads must a man walk down?" from Bob Dylan's song "Blowin' in the Wind".
At the end of the radio series, the television series and the novel The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Arthur Dent, having escaped the Earth's destruction, potentially has some of the computational matrix in his brain. He attempts to discover The Ultimate Question by extracting it from his brainwave patterns, as abusively[2] suggested by Ford Prefect, when a Scrabble-playing caveman spells out forty two. Arthur pulls random letters from a bag, but only gets the sentence "What do you get if you multiply six by nine?"
"Six by nine. Forty two."
"That's it. That's all there is."
"I always thought something was fundamentally wrong with the universe"[1]
Six times nine is actually fifty-four. The program on the "Earth computer" should have run correctly, but the unexpected arrival of the Golgafrinchans on prehistoric Earth caused input errors into the system'--computing (because of the garbage in, garbage out rule) the wrong question'--the question in Arthur's subconscious being invalid all along.[1]
Quoting Fit the Seventh of the radio series, on Christmas Eve, 1978:
Narrator: There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.
There is another theory, which states that this has already happened.[3]
Some readers noticed that 613 — 913 = 4213 (using base 13). Douglas Adams later joked about this observation, saying, "I may be a sorry case, but I don't write jokes in base 13."[4]
In Life, the Universe and Everything, Prak, a man who knows all that is true, confirms that 42 is indeed The Answer, and confirms that it is impossible for both The Answer and The Question to be known in the same universe as they will cancel each other out and take the Universe with them'--to be replaced by something even more bizarre (as described in the first theory) and that it may have already happened (as described in the second).[5] Though the question is never found, 42 is the table number at which Arthur and his friends sit when they arrive at Milliways at the end of the radio series. Likewise, Mostly Harmless ends when Arthur stops at a street address identified by his cry of, "There, number 42!" and enters the club Beta, owned by Stavro Mueller (Stavromula Beta). Shortly after, the Earth is destroyed in all existing incarnations.
The number 42[edit]Douglas Adams was asked many times why he chose the number 42. Many theories were proposed, including that 42 is 101010 in binary code, that light refracts off water by 42 degrees to create a rainbow, that light requires 10''42 seconds to cross the diameter of a proton.[6] Adams rejected them all. On 3 November 1993, he gave an answer[7] on alt.fan.douglas-adams:
The answer to this is very simple. It was a joke. It had to be a number, an ordinary, smallish number, and I chose that one. Binary representations, base thirteen, Tibetan monks are all complete nonsense. I sat at my desk, stared into the garden and thought '42 will do'. I typed it out. End of story.
Adams described his choice as 'a completely ordinary number, a number not just divisible by two but also six and seven. In fact it's the sort of number that you could without any fear introduce to your parents'.[3]
While 42 was a number with no hidden meaning, Adams explained in more detail in an interview with Iain Johnstone of BBC Radio 4 (recorded in 1998 though never broadcast)[8] to celebrate the first radio broadcast's 20th anniversary. Having decided it should be a number, he tried to think what an "ordinary number" should be. He ruled out non-integers, then he remembered having worked as a "prop-borrower" for John Cleese on his Video Arts training videos. Cleese needed a funny number for the punchline to a sketch involving a bank teller (himself) and a customer (Tim Brooke-Taylor). Adams believed that the number that Cleese came up with was 42 and he decided to use it.[9]
Adams had also written a sketch for The Burkiss Way called "42 Logical Positivism Avenue", broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 12 January 1977[10] '' 14 months before the Hitchhiker's Guide first broadcast "42" in Fit the Fourth, 29 March 1978.[3]
In January 2000, in response to a panellist's "Where does the number 42 come from?" on the radio show "Book Club", Adams explained that he was "on his way to work one morning, whilst still writing the scene, and was thinking about what the actual answer should be. He eventually decided that it should be something that made no sense whatsoever '' a number, and a mundane one at that. And that is how he arrived at the number 42, completely at random."
Stephen Fry, a friend of Adams, claims that Adams told him "exactly why 42", and that the reason is "fascinating, extraordinary and, when you think hard about it, completely obvious."[11] However, Fry says that he has vowed not to tell anyone the secret, and that it must go with him to the grave. John Lloyd, Adams' collaborator on The Meaning of Liff and two Hitchhiker's fits, said that Adams has called 42 "the funniest of the two-digit numbers."[12]
The number 42appears frequently in the work of Lewis Carroll, and some critics have suggested that this was an influence.[13][14] Other purported Carroll influences include that Adams named the episodes of the original radio series of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy "fits", the word Carroll used to name the chapters of The Hunting of the Snark.
There is the persistent tale that 42 is Adams' tribute to the indefatigable paperback book, and is the average number of lines on an average page of an average paperback.[15] Another common guess is that 42 refers to the number of laws in cricket, a recurring theme of the books.[16]
42 Puzzle[edit]The 42 Puzzle is a game devised by Douglas Adams in 1994 for the United States series of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy books. The puzzle is an illustration consisting of 42 multi-coloured balls, in 7 columns and 6 rows. Douglas Adams has said,
Everybody was looking for hidden meanings and puzzles and significances in what I had written (like 'is it significant that 6—9 = 42 in base 13?'. As if.) So I thought that just for a change I would actually construct a puzzle and see how many people solved it. Of course, nobody paid it any attention. I think that's terribly significant.[17]
In the puzzle the question is unknown, but the answer is already known to be 42. This is similar to the book where the "Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything" is known but not the question.
The puzzle first appeared in The Illustrated Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. It was later incorporated into the covers of all five reprinted "Hitchhiker's" novels in the United States.
Six of the solutions are:[18]
(1) How many spheres are in the diagram? (six rows of seven is 42)(2) What position in the grid does the Earth occupy? (42)(3) The barcode on one of the spheres is the number 42 as an Interleaved 2 of 5barcode(4) Considering red-hued spheres (red, purple, orange, black) as a '1' and those without as a '0', what number does each line represent in decimal form? (In binary, each line reads '0101010', or '42' in decimal form.)(5) What number do the blue-tinted spheres (blue, green, purple, black) spell out? (Similar to a colour blindness test.) (42)(6) What number is represented by Roman numerals spelled out by the yellow-tinted spheres (yellow, orange, green, black) in the first three rows? (XLII = 42)On the Internet and in software[edit]The number 42 and the phrase, "Life, the universe, and everything" have attained cult status on the Internet. "Life, the universe, and everything" is a common name for the off-topic section of an Internet forum and the phrase is invoked in similar ways to mean "anything at all". Many chatbots, when asked about the meaning of life, will answer "42". Several online calculators are also programmed with the Question. If you type the answer to life the universe and everything into Google (without quotes or capitalisation), the Google Calculator will give you 42, as will Wolfram's Computational Knowledge Engine.[19] Similarly, if you type the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything into DuckDuckGo, the 0-click box will read "42".[20] In the online community Second Life, there is a section on a sim called "42nd Life." It is devoted to this concept in the book series, and several attempts at recreating Milliways, the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, were made.
In OpenOffice.org software (prior to version 3.4) if you type into any cell of a spreadsheet=ANTWORT("Das Leben, das Universum und der ganze Rest") (German for =ANSWER("life, the universe and everything")), the result is 42.[21]
ISO/IEC 14519-2001/ IEEE Std 1003.5-1999, IEEE Standard for Information Technology '' POSIX(R) Ada Language Interfaces '' Part 1: Binding for System Application Program Interface (API) , uses the number 42 as the required return value from a process that terminates due to an unhandled exception. The Rationale says "the choice of the value 42 is arbitrary" and cites the Adams book as the source of the value.
The random seed chosen to procedurally create the whole universe including all the regions, constellations, stars, planets, moons and mineral distribution of the online massively multi-player computer game EVE Online was chosen as 42 by its lead game designer in 2002.[22]
In the computer game Gothic "42" is a code that deactivates all activated cheats. After typing "42" in a right place, text "What was the question?" appears.
Cultural references[edit]The Allen Telescope Array, a radio telescope used by SETI, has 42 dishes in homage to the Answer.[23]
In the American TV show Lost, 42 is the last of the mysterious numbers 4, 8, 15, 16, 23, and 42. In an interview with Lostpedia, producer David Fury confirmed this was a reference to Hitchhiker's.[24]
The British TV show The Kumars at No. 42 is so named because show creator Sanjeev Bhaskar is a Hitchhiker's fan.[25]
The band Coldplay's album Viva la Vida includes a song called "42". When asked by Q magazine if the song's title was Hitchhiker's-related, Chris Martin said, "It is and it isn't."[26]
The band Level 42 chose its name in reference to the book.[27]
The episode "42" of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who was named in reference to the Answer. Writer Chris Chibnall acknowledged that "it's a playful title".[28]
Ken Jennings, defeated along with Brad Rutter in a Jeopardy match against IBM's Watson, writes that Watson's avatar which appeared on-screen for those games showed 42 "threads of thought," and that the number was chosen in reference to this meme.[29]
Don't Panic[edit]In the series, Don't Panic is a phrase on the cover of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.[30] The novel explains that this was partly because the device "looked insanely complicated" to operate, and partly to keep intergalactic travellers from panicking.[31] "It is said that despite its many glaring (and occasionally fatal) inaccuracies, the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy itself has outsold the Encyclopedia Galactica because it is slightly cheaper, and because it has the words "DON'T PANIC" in large, friendly letters on the cover."[30]
Arthur C. Clarke said Douglas Adams' use of "don't panic" was perhaps the best advice that could be given to humanity.[32]
Knowing where one's towel is[edit]Somebody who can stay in control of virtually any situation is somebody who is said to know where his or her towel is. The logic behind this statement is presented in chapter 3 of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy thus:
... a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: nonhitchhiker) discovers that a hitchhiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, washcloth, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet-weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitchhiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitchhiker might accidentally have "lost". What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with.
Adams got the idea for this phrase when he went travelling and found that his beach towel kept disappearing. In 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy -The Radio Scripts', his friends describe how he would always "mislay" his towel. On Towel Day, fans commemorate Adams by carrying towels with them.
Mostly Harmless[edit]The only entry about Earth in the Guide used to be "Harmless", but Ford Prefect managed to change it a little before getting stuck on Earth. "Mostly Harmless" provoked a very upset reaction from Arthur when heard. (Those two words are not what Ford submitted as a result of his research '-- merely all that was left after his editors were done with it.) It is the title of the fifth book in the Hitchhiker series. Its popularity is such that it has become the definition of Earth in many standard works of sci-fi reference, like The Star Trek Encyclopedia. Additionally, "Harmless" and "Mostly Harmless" both feature as ranks in the computer game Elite. Also, in World of Warcraft, there is a rifle that fires (mostly) harmless pellets. In the MMORPGRuneScape, there is an island called Mos Le Harmless (Mostly Harmless). Low-scoring players in the multiplayer version of the game Perfect Dark and GoldenEye 007 are awarded with the designation "mostly harmless". In the 2008 edition of the board game Cosmic Encounter, the Human race is given the attribute "Mostly Harmless."
Not entirely unlike[edit]In the novel The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Arthur Dent tries to get a Nutrimatic drinks dispenser to produce a cup of tea. Instead, it invariably produces a concoction (which most people found unpleasant) that is "almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea". One of the primary goals of the player, as Arthur Dent, in the computer game The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, is to thwart the machine and find some decent tea, a mission that the player is constantly reminded of by the inventory item "no tea". According to the Jargon File, the briefer "not entirely unlike" has entered hacker jargon.[33]
Share and Enjoy[edit]"Share and Enjoy" is the slogan of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Complaints Division. In the radio version, this phrase had its own song (sung in Fit the Ninth of the radio series), which was sung by a choir of robots during "special occasions". The Sirius Cybernetics Corporation tends to produce inherently faulty goods, which renders the statement ironic since few people would want to "Share and Enjoy" something that was defective. Among the design flaws is the choir of robots that perform this song: they sing a tritone out of tune with the accompaniment. The Guide relates that the words "Share and Enjoy" were displayed in illuminated letters three miles high near the Sirius Cybernetics Complaints Division, until their weight caused them to collapse through the underground offices of many young executives. The upper half of the sign that now protrudes translates in the local tongue as "Go stick your head in a pig", and is lit up only for special celebrations.
The episode Fit the Twentieth of the radio series features a personal computer OS booting sound ( la The Microsoft Sound) set to the tune of "Share and Enjoy". Furthermore, Fit the Twenty-First of the radio series, the last episode in the adaption of the novel So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, features a polyphonic ringtone version of the tune. The "Share and Enjoy" tune also is used in the TV series as the backing for a Sirius Cybernetics Corporation robot commercial (slogan: "Your plastic pal who's fun to be with!").
This phrase is often invoked in releasing freeware, shareware, or open source software, though without its ironic connotations.[citation needed]
Apparently unaware of the reference, Mars has also been using the phrase on bags of Revels,[34]M&M's[35] and Maltesers.[36] The phrase is currently also being used on posters outside some McDonald's restaurants in the UK.[37]
So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish[edit]After mice, the second most intelligent species on Earth were the dolphins.
The dolphins had long known of the impending demolition of Earth and had made many attempts to alert mankind to the danger...The last ever dolphins message was misinterpreted as a surprisingly sophisticated attempt to do a double backward somersault through a hoop whilst whistling "The Star-Spangled Banner," but in fact the message was this: "So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish."
'--Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
The line was also the title of the fourth book in the trilogy, and appears in that book as a message inscribed on crystal bowls left as parting gifts from the dolphins to the human race. Its popularity was such that it was the title of the opening song for the 2005 movie The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
The phrase was spoofed for the NOFX album So Long, and Thanks for All the Shoes.
The phrase was also spoofed for the All Time Low track "So Long, and Thanks for All the Booze", from the appropriately-titled album Don't Panic.
See also[edit]^ abcDouglas Adams (1 January 1980). The Restaurant at the End of the Universe. ISBN 0-345-39181-0. ^episode 6 of the TV series^ abcThe Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts. Douglas Adams, edited by Geoffrey Perkins. Pan Books, London. 1985. ISBN 0-330-29288-9^"BBC '' h2g2 '' A Conversation Forum". Retrieved 4 September 2007. ^Douglas Adams (1982). Life, the Universe and Everything. ISBN 0-330-26738-8. ^Peter Minearo, Mike Smith (3 April 2007). "In Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, 42 is the number from which all meaning could be derived.". CIO (chief information officer) Magazine. Retrieved 3 March 2008. ^"Why 42 ? '' alt.fan.douglas-adams '' Google Groups". Retrieved 1 September 2007. ^This interview is contained on Douglas Adams's Guide to The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy (BBC Cassette ISBN 0-563-55236-0) and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy '' The Collectors Edition (BBC CD ISBN 0-563-47702-4)^Several attempts by fans to find this particular video have been unsuccessful and it is possible it may never have been published or has since been deleted from use.^This is found on the Douglas Adams at the BBC CD set (ISBN 0-563-49404-2)^"BBC News '' Magazine '' What on earth is 42?". 7 March 2008. Retrieved 22 March 2008. ^John Lloyd speaking at the 30th Anniversary Hitchhiker's recording at Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture on Wednesday 12 March 2008 at The Royal Geographical Society^Lewis Carroll and Douglas Adams.^The Mystery of Lewis Carroll, Jenny Woolf.^Vernon, Mark (7 March 2008). "What on earth is 42?". BBC News. Retrieved 9 June 2008. ^Douglas Adams and the cult of 42 | Books. The Guardian (2013-09-03). Retrieved on 2013-09-07.^"Cool questions and answers with Douglas Adams". Retrieved 19 August 2007. ^"4.8 Probable Solution to the Ill Guide Puzzle (Douglas Adams)". Retrieved 19 August 2007. ^"answer to life, the universe, and everything '' Wolfram|Alpha". Wolframalpha.com. Retrieved 26 July 2011. ^"the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything at Duck Duck Go". Duckduckgo.com. 10 October 2010. Retrieved 26 July 2011. ^"Easter Eggs '' OpenOffice.org Wiki". Wiki.services.openoffice.org. 21 April 2010. Retrieved 26 July 2011. ^Emilsson, Kjartan (Speaker) (23 March 2012). DUST 514 Seeding The Universe (Television production). Iceland: CCP Games. ^Jacqui Hayes (2010). "Silent witness". Cosmos. Retrieved 20 August 2010. ^"Lostpedia interview with David Fury". Lostpedia.wikia.com. 20 May 2008. Retrieved 26 July 2011. ^"10 things we didn't know this time last week". BBC News. 14 November 2003. Retrieved 17 February 2009. ^"Coldplay: Viva La Vida". Q magazine. Retrieved 9 March 2009. ^Mandy Carter (2006). "Interview: Mark King '' Level 42". Official site: Level 42. Retrieved 4 April 2009. ^Darlington, David (April 2007). "Script Doctors: Chris Chibnall". Doctor Who Magazine (381): 24''30. ^Ken Jennings (16 February 2011). "My Puny Human Brain". Slate magazine. ^ abAdams, Douglas (1979). The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Pocket Books. p. 3. ISBN 0-671-46149-4. ^Adams, Douglas (1979). The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Pocket Books. p. 27. ISBN 0-671-46149-4. ^Zebrowski, George (30 June 2008). "Arthur C. Clarke looks back on the lifetime of influences that led him to become a science-fiction Grand Master". Sci Fi Weekly. SCI FI. Archived from the original on 23 July 2008. Retrieved 24 July 2008. "The best advice I think was given by Douglas Adams: "Don't panic."" ^"not entirely unlike X" '' The Jargon File (version 4.4.7)^"The Sirius Cybernetics Corporation does confectionary!". e_cathedra. Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^"Share and Enjoy!". Molecule Man. Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^"Maltesers". Aunty Marion. Retrieved 15 December 2012. ^Stephen, Allcroft. "McD Share & Enjoy". Further reading[edit]Smith, Mol (2007). 42 '' The Answer to Life, The Universe, and Everything. Maurice Smith. pp. 178 pages. ISBN 978-0-9557137-0-5.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
gabon ebola - Google Search
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:42
gabon ebola - Google SearchGoogle Instant is unavailable. Press Enter to search.
Learn moreGoogle Instant is off due to connection speed. Press Enter to search.
Press Enter to search.
Screen reader users, click here to turn off Google Instant.
Please click
here if you are not redirected within a few seconds.
Search settings
LanguagesTurn on SafeSearch
Advanced search
History
Search help
About 1,720,000 results (0.19 seconds)
'Underestimated' Ebola outbreak spreads - USA Todaywww.usatoday.com/story/news/.../ebola...in.../14489251/Aug 23, 2014 -Ebola continues to spread in West Africa as Sierra Leone voted to pass a ... Gabon, Senegal, South Africa and Cameroon had all earlier in the ...Every Newly Emerging Disease Like Ebola Begins With a ...news.nationalgeographic.com/.../141005-eb...National Geographic Society
Oct 5, 2014 -We were crossing a forest in northeastern Gabon that was known to be Ebola habitat. There had been an Ebola outbreak nearby that had killed ...WHO | Ebola virus diseasewww.who.int/csr/don/archive/.../ebola/en/World Health Organization
2001 - Ebola haemorrhagic fever in Gabon/The Republic of the Congo - Update 10; 22 March 2002 2002 - Ebola haemorrhagic fever in Gabon/The Republic of ...GlobalMD - Ebola Epidemicwww.globalmd.org/c/portal/layout?p_l_id=PUB.1.116M(C)kambo in Gabon is the site of several outbreaks of ebola hemorrhagic fever. ... The Ebola virus was first identified in a western equatorial province of Sudan ...
gabon map - Google Search
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:41
{"os":"47KB","ou":"http://www.lonelyplanet.com/maps/africa/gabon/map_of_gabon.jpg","rh":"lonelyplanet.com","ow":466,"th":96,"id":"vIfVCNmfECuhOM:","tu":"https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q\u003dtbn:ANd9GcQVMSwA-qeUJDhCKL6ltMjv7yTsPNKl-Ac9ddHHkXWrLcF17pM1hbccdCZ2","s":"\u003cb\u003eMap\u003c\/b\u003e of \u003cb\u003eGabon\u003c\/b\u003e","tw":128,"pt":"Map of Gabon","rt":0,"ru":"http://www.lonelyplanet.com/maps/africa/gabon/","oh":350}
{"os":"30KB","ou":"http://www.worldatlas.com/webimage/countrys/africa/gaafrica.gif","rh":"worldatlas.com","ow":320,"th":96,"id":"6UTTZrJ90RlYRM:","tu":"https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q\u003dtbn:ANd9GcRWE3H0N_zmklNxvfubh4K_EeDVhYgZZQRwMIMILvTeCynpke03hJ2ClQ","s":"\u003cb\u003eGabon Map\u003c\/b\u003e / Geography of \u003cb\u003eGabon\u003c\/b\u003e / \u003cb\u003eMap\u003c\/b\u003e of \u003cb\u003eGabon\u003c\/b\u003e - Worldatlas.","tw":88,"pt":"Gabon Map / Geography of Gabon / Map of Gabon - Worldatlas.","rt":0,"ru":"http://www.worldatlas.com/webimage/countrys/africa/ga.htm","oh":350}
{"os":"77KB","ou":"http://geology.com/world/gabon-map.gif","rh":"geology.com","ow":700,"th":97,"id":"bikmBgFLQAIIZM:","tu":"https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q\u003dtbn:ANd9GcT3c45cbWSyW_ahxSNQOX2cCINXoL4S7wXdeWyLtQ5obTeOUM3j_9WzV6c","s":"\u003cb\u003eGabon Map\u003c\/b\u003e - \u003cb\u003eGabon\u003c\/b\u003e Satellite Image - Physical - Political","tw":104,"pt":"Gabon Map - Gabon Satellite Image - Physical - Political","rt":0,"ru":"http://geology.com/world/gabon-satellite-image.shtml","oh":650}
{"os":"101KB","ou":"http://www.geographicguide.net/africa/images/gabon-map.gif","rh":"permaculturemarin.org","ow":772,"th":96,"id":"er5-dnCis4TG7M:","tu":"https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q\u003dtbn:ANd9GcShFT7WYetbsNCCyLTJqfbOyMFFFHoSHRV_6hv9NGT6Fusum3GlNW57pBw","s":"\u003cb\u003eGabon Map\u003c\/b\u003e","tw":93,"pt":"Gabon Map","rt":0,"ru":"http://www.permaculturemarin.org/gabon-map/","oh":797}
{"os":"377KB","ou":"http://www.ezilon.com/maps/images/africa/Gabon-road-map.gif","rh":"ezilon.com","ow":1412,"th":96,"id":"auNAm8dSxYApqM:","tu":"https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q\u003dtbn:ANd9GcTUp2s9uv5qWcGPZe5gsOZnblz6DUVInR4JneIINzLen9_AtuvPQ4ToNg","s":"Road \u003cb\u003eMap\u003c\/b\u003e of \u003cb\u003eGabon\u003c\/b\u003e and \u003cb\u003eGabonese\u003c\/b\u003e Road \u003cb\u003eMaps\u003c\/b\u003e","tw":91,"pt":"Road Map of Gabon and Gabonese Road Maps","rt":0,"ru":"http://www.ezilon.com/maps/africa/gabon-road-maps.html","oh":1492}
Shell strikes gas off Gabon | Oil and Gas Technology
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:40
The well Leopard-1 encountered a substantial gas column with around 200-metres net gas pay in a pre-salt reservoir.
Leopard-1 is located around 145-kilometres off the Gabonese coast, west of Gamba. It was drilled in water 2,110-metres deep to a total vertical depth of 5,063-metres. Shell and partners are planning to undertake an appraisal programme to further determine the resource volumes.
''Shell has been exploring in Gabon for over 50 years. This latest deep water discovery is a testament to the innovation of our explorers in pursuing new plays, and application of our global sub-surface expertise,'' said Andy Brown, Shell Upstream International director. ''We are proud to be sharing this success with CNOOC Limited, our partner in the licence.''
Leopard-1 was drilled in licence BCD10, operated by Shell (75 per cent). Second partner in the venture is CNOOC Limited (25 per cent).
This frontier discovery follows recent deepwater exploration successes in the heartlands for Shell Exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and Malaysia.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Drugmakers may need indemnity for fast-tracked Ebola vaccines
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:52
Drugmakers may need indemnity for fast-tracked Ebola vaccinesTop News
Drugmakers may need indemnity for fast-tracked Ebola vaccines
Thu, Oct 23 07:25 AM EDT
By Ben Hirschler and Stephanie Nebehay
LONDON/GENEVA (Reuters) - Drugmakers are looking for some kind of indemnity from governments or multilateral agencies against possible losses or claims arising from the widespread emergency use of new Ebola vaccines in Africa.
While the issue will not delay the industry's work to accelerate production and clinical testing of three experimental vaccines, it is likely to be discussed at a high-level meeting in Geneva on Thursday.
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan will chair the meeting, which includes industry executives, representatives from countries including those affected by Ebola, drug regulators and funders.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L) Chief Executive Andrew Witty said a system of indemnity made sense given the unique situation in which companies are being urged by the WHO to fast-track the supply of novel vaccines in a matter of months rather than years.
There is currently no proven vaccine against Ebola and drug companies have been wary in the past of investing in the area, since the commercial opportunity is small. Potential losses or claims arising from the use of new vaccines would represent an additional hurdle.
Many drug companies are now discussing ways to help out with production, including some like Pfizer (PFE.N) that are not directly involved in Ebola vaccine development.
Witty said indemnity was not a concern for the early phase of testing, when thousands of doses are expected to be given to frontline healthcare workers as part of a clinical trial program in January, but it would be needed when vaccines were rushed into much more widespread use.
"I think it is reasonable that there should be some level of indemnification because the vaccine is essentially being used in an emergency situation before we've all had the chance to confirm its absolute profile," he told BBC radio.
"That's a situation where we would look for some kind of indemnification, either from governments or from multilateral agencies."
Brian Greenwood, a professor of clinical tropical medicine at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, agrees that drug companies should not have to shoulder all the risk. "There would have to be some sort of guarantee," he told Reuters.
MANUFACTURING CAPACITY
Leading drugmakers say they are ready to work together to speed up the supply of Ebola vaccines.
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) research head Paul Stoffels, who hopes to produce more than 1 million doses of an Ebola vaccine next year, said he was discussing collaboration with both GSK and other companies such as Pfizer, which has significant capacity to make a variety of biotech drugs and vaccines.
"We are looking at capabilities for biological production to upscale further," Stoffels said in Geneva.
The meeting is set to discuss ways to streamline the vaccine supply process and ensure there are adequate financial resources.
"WHO is organizing this meeting to discuss how to access vaccines when they are proven safe and how to finance them,'' a spokesman for the United Nations agency said.
Europe is also set to provide 200 million euros ($250 million) of funding to develop new Ebola vaccines, as well as drugs and diagnostic tests, sources said. An announcement on the European move is now expected for next week.
"We are now in a situation where we are desperate and we are looking for solutions," Yvette Stevens, Sierra Leone ambassador to the U.N. in Geneva, told Reuters.
GSK currently has the most advanced vaccine, the first doses of which are expected to be ready for use late this year, while clinical trials on a second vaccine from NewLink Genetics (NLNK.O) have just started and J&J will begin testing a third one in January.
"This is an unprecedented pace of development. We are literally doing in maybe five or six months what would normally take five or six years," Witty said. "I've already ordered five production lines to allow us to expand production."
(Additional reporting by Kate Kelland and Marina Depetris; Editing by Giles Elgood and David Stamp)
Drugmakers may need indemnity for fast-tracked Ebola vaccinesTop News
Drugmakers may need indemnity for fast-tracked Ebola vaccines
Thu, Oct 23 07:25 AM EDT
By Ben Hirschler and Stephanie Nebehay
LONDON/GENEVA (Reuters) - Drugmakers are looking for some kind of indemnity from governments or multilateral agencies against possible losses or claims arising from the widespread emergency use of new Ebola vaccines in Africa.
While the issue will not delay the industry's work to accelerate production and clinical testing of three experimental vaccines, it is likely to be discussed at a high-level meeting in Geneva on Thursday.
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan will chair the meeting, which includes industry executives, representatives from countries including those affected by Ebola, drug regulators and funders.
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L) Chief Executive Andrew Witty said a system of indemnity made sense given the unique situation in which companies are being urged by the WHO to fast-track the supply of novel vaccines in a matter of months rather than years.
There is currently no proven vaccine against Ebola and drug companies have been wary in the past of investing in the area, since the commercial opportunity is small. Potential losses or claims arising from the use of new vaccines would represent an additional hurdle.
Many drug companies are now discussing ways to help out with production, including some like Pfizer (PFE.N) that are not directly involved in Ebola vaccine development.
Witty said indemnity was not a concern for the early phase of testing, when thousands of doses are expected to be given to frontline healthcare workers as part of a clinical trial program in January, but it would be needed when vaccines were rushed into much more widespread use.
"I think it is reasonable that there should be some level of indemnification because the vaccine is essentially being used in an emergency situation before we've all had the chance to confirm its absolute profile," he told BBC radio.
"That's a situation where we would look for some kind of indemnification, either from governments or from multilateral agencies."
Brian Greenwood, a professor of clinical tropical medicine at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, agrees that drug companies should not have to shoulder all the risk. "There would have to be some sort of guarantee," he told Reuters.
MANUFACTURING CAPACITY
Leading drugmakers say they are ready to work together to speed up the supply of Ebola vaccines.
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) research head Paul Stoffels, who hopes to produce more than 1 million doses of an Ebola vaccine next year, said he was discussing collaboration with both GSK and other companies such as Pfizer, which has significant capacity to make a variety of biotech drugs and vaccines.
"We are looking at capabilities for biological production to upscale further," Stoffels said in Geneva.
The meeting is set to discuss ways to streamline the vaccine supply process and ensure there are adequate financial resources.
"WHO is organizing this meeting to discuss how to access vaccines when they are proven safe and how to finance them,'' a spokesman for the United Nations agency said.
Europe is also set to provide 200 million euros ($250 million) of funding to develop new Ebola vaccines, as well as drugs and diagnostic tests, sources said. An announcement on the European move is now expected for next week.
"We are now in a situation where we are desperate and we are looking for solutions," Yvette Stevens, Sierra Leone ambassador to the U.N. in Geneva, told Reuters.
GSK currently has the most advanced vaccine, the first doses of which are expected to be ready for use late this year, while clinical trials on a second vaccine from NewLink Genetics (NLNK.O) have just started and J&J will begin testing a third one in January.
"This is an unprecedented pace of development. We are literally doing in maybe five or six months what would normally take five or six years," Witty said. "I've already ordered five production lines to allow us to expand production."
(Additional reporting by Kate Kelland and Marina Depetris; Editing by Giles Elgood and David Stamp)
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Africa: Ebola Vaccines to Be Tested
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:32
Amid positive developments in the global fight against Ebola, including a growing response to the Secretary-General's appeals for the more funding to tackle the outbreak, the United Nations health agency today announced the expected delivery of Ebola candidate vaccines, as the UN system continues to ramps up efforts to quell the spread of the deadly virus.
World Health Organization (WHO) spokeswoman, Fad(C)la Chaib, told a press briefing in Geneva earlier today that the agency is expecting the arrival of a Canadian shipment of Ebola candidate vaccines to arrive in Geneva on 22 October where they would be kept refrigerated at the city's Cantonal Hospital.
The delivery of the vaccines is the next step in a process initiated by the WHO in late September when it organized an expert consultation featuring more than 70 experts to assess the status of work to test and eventually license two candidate Ebola vaccines.
"The overarching objective was to take stock of the many efforts currently under way to rapidly evaluate Ebola vaccines for safety and efficacy. The next step is to make these vaccines available as soon as possible - and in sufficient quantities - to protect critical frontline workers and to make a difference in the epidemic's future evolution," the WHO explained in a statement which added that the "ultimate goal" was to have "a fully tested and licensed product that can be scaled up for use in mass vaccination campaigns."
The announcement of the arrival of the candidate vaccines follows the UN agency's recent confirmation that both Nigeria and Senegal are now free of Ebola virus transmission, after 42 days without a single case - a fact the WHO celebrated as "a spectacular success story."
Nevertheless, Ms. Chaib stated that the three remaining affected countries - Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone - were "certainly underreporting" the scope of their epidemics, but that it remained "impossible to tell to which degree."
Responding to questions from reporters, the spokesperson also acknowledged "perceptions of delays" in the WHO's response, adding that the agency would conduct "in due time a thorough review of its response." Right now, she continued, the focus remained on fighting the disease and minimizing its impact on the West African population.
Also addressing the press briefing was a spokesperson for the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), Christophe Boulierac, who drew renewed attention to the plight of Ebola survivors who struggle with stigmatization, isolation and psycho-social stress despite overcoming the disease.
Mr. Boulierac explained that even though Ebola survivors were no longer contagious and had developed immunity from the virus, many were kept at a distance by their communities, noting that in one instance the daughter of a survivor was not allowed to play with children.
The spokesperson told journalists that despite the stigma, a UNICEF-backed centre in Liberia had identified and trained 20 survivors to help at care centres throughout the country.
The fact that the survivors are no longer afraid of catching the virus and the fact that they had overcome their own sufferings and could relate to the current patients placed them in a unique position to provide care, especially to children, concluded Mr. Boulierac.
Meanwhile, in a statement released by the UN spokesperson in New York, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the uptick in the financing of the Ebola Multi-Partner Trust Fund which forms part of the monetary groundwork for the global Ebola response as well as the wider UN response.
The Secretary-General established the Fund to provide "a flexible, accountable, strategic and transparent platform to finance critical unfunded priorities and help reduce the rate of Ebola transmission," the statement said, explaining that it would help provide a range of materials, including trained medical personnel, mobile laboratories, vehicles, helicopters, protective equipment, and medevac capacities.
Mr. Ban noted that the total amount of commitments and pledges now stood at $50 million and urged all countries who had already contributed "to consider what more they can do, and those who have yet to contribute to do so as a matter of urgency." The Organization had initially set the target of $100 million to be reached by the end of October.
"Ebola is a major global problem that demands a massive and immediate global response," he added.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
allAfrica.com: Nigeria: European Union Names Ebola Coordinator
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:29
European Union foreign ministers agreed Monday to appoint an Ebola coordinator to bring together resources and funding to tackle the deadly disease before it becomes a global disaster.
"My colleagues all agree that the idea of an Ebola coordinator is a good one," French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told reporters after a meeting with EU counterparts in Luxembourg.
"The person will be named in the coming days," added Fabius.
The coordinator will be based at the EU's Emergency Response Coordination Centre in Brussels.
The leaders of the 28 EU nations will meet on Thursday and Friday at a summit in Brussels where Ebola will be a major concern, having taken more than 4,500 lives in the worst affected west African countries, while also showing up in the United States and Europe.
The EU move comes three days after US President Barack Obama named attorney Ron Klain as the new White House "Ebola czar" to coordinate the US response to the outbreak.
With a fatality rate running at 70 percent and no known cure or vaccine, world leaders are rushing to get ahead of Ebola before it can establish a foothold outside Africa.
Appointing an EU coordinator is an important step "because everybody has to be on board to fight this epidemic," Fabius said.
The mounting death toll in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea is cause for grave concern, with the "figures rising... exponentially", he added.
Earlier Monday, the World Health Organization declared Nigeria - Africa's most populous country - Ebola-free, showing what can be done if action is taken promptly.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Internet Freedom
Britain threatens Internet 'trolls' with two years in jail - Yahoo News
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 05:07
London (AFP) - People found guilty of Internet "trolling" in Britain could be jailed for up to two years under government proposals outlined on Sunday, following a number of high-profile cases of abusive and threatening behaviour on Twitter.
Justice Secretary Chris Grayling told the Mail on Sunday newspaper: "This is a law to combat cruelty -- and marks our determination to take a stand against a baying cyber-mob."
There has been increasing concern in Britain about the growing scourge of Internet "trolls" who post hate-filled messages on social media, often threatening their targets.
The parents of missing girl Madeleine McCann are among the most recent victims, and last month a man was jailed for 18 weeks for what prosecutors described as "a campaign of hatred" against a female lawmaker.
"These internet trolls are cowards who are poisoning our national life. No-one would permit such venom in person, so there should be no place for it on social media," Grayling said.
"That is why we are determined to quadruple the current six-month sentence."
Victims have long been calling for police and prosecutors to take online abuse more seriously and lawyers had anticipated an increase in sentences for those convicted of trolling.
"There is a public interest in having people put away for a long time," Chris Holder, of London law firm Bristows, told AFP earlier this month.
"It is putting someone in fear of their life and fear of physical harm. I think the law will develop and the sentences will go up and up."
However, some lawyers and freedom of speech campaigners have warned that criminal sanctions should be the last resort.
"Do we want to criminalise every social conduct that we find problematic?" Barbora Bukovska, a senior director at campaign group ARTICLE 19, said earlier this month.
Prosecutions can currently be brought under a number of different laws, but the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) last year introduced guidelines to address any confusion.
It said messages sent via social media could be a criminal offence if they contain "credible threats of violence" or target an individual in a way that "may constitute harassment or stalking".
The government proposes to amend two existing laws to extend the maximum jail term and also the time limit for prosecutions, from six months to three years.
Society & CultureCrime & Justiceinternet trollssocial mediathreatening behaviour
F-Russia
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sweden's Military Calls Sub's Breach of Waters 'Fucked Up'
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:50
The Swedish Navy continues to stalk the waters off the coast of its capital for a foreign -- all but certainly Russian -- submarine, and the country's military brass on Tuesday sounded an exasperated note to describe the unsuccessful hunt. "This is very serious," Sverker G¶ransson, the country's top military commander, told reporters. "I would even go so far as to say," he continued, "to say that it's fucked up."
Maybe that salty language will be enough to catch the attention of Moscow, which continues to deny that it has anything to do with reports of a submarine mere miles from Stockholm. While Swedish military officials refuse to confirm that they are searching for a submarine or to whom the vessel belongs, the massive hunt is widely assumed to be focused on a Russian ship.
Late Tuesday, Swedish military officials reported that they received reports of two additional sightings of the vessel, but they appear to have made little substantive progress in tracking it down. The hunt for the sub continues in the Stockholm archipelago, with Swedish Navy ships scouring the dense island landscape for the vessel.
As I wrote on Monday, the Swedish Navy faces enormous obstacles in its hunt for the mystery submarine. Its anti-submarine helicopters were sold off in 2008, and the area around Stockholm is one of the world's most difficult for carrying out a submarine hunt.
At a Tuesday press conference, the Swedish military released a new map documenting sightings of the vessel. The military has now documented five sightings of the vessel, most of which have come from private citizens in the archipelago. That includes the two sightings reported Tuesday.
But the map also highlights the difficulties facing the Swedes. The archipelago is a dense island grouping, with myriad places for a submarine to hide. Consider that the second-uppermost sighting on the map is in a channel that is at most 100 meters across. Open the map in full resolution, and the enormity of the task becomes apparent: inlets, bays, channels, and outcroppings make for a submariner's paradise. It's a treacherous place to navigate, of course, but the Russian submarine for now retains an advantage over its Swedish opponents.
Moreover, the Swedish military has been reliant on the public for these sightings. At a press conference Tuesday evening, Anders Grenstad, a spokesman for the Swedish military, told reporters that the military's own observations had been "classed so low" that there was no need to go into their details.
With no real progress to report, the Swedish submarine hunt has entered something of a farcical stage. All of Sweden's major media outlets have staffers reporting live from boats out in the Stockholm archipelago. But there of course isn't much news to be gleaned from the mysterious movements of Swedish Navy vessels. Combat divers have been spotted going into the water, and there are unconfirmed reports that commandos are searching islands in the archipelago.
With very little to report about the submarine, the subplots are beginning to take center stage. On Sunday, the Swedish media wound itself into a tizzy over a photograph of a man dressed in black wading into the water somewhere in the archipelago. The security services were dispatched to find the man, who turned out to be a pensioner named Ove, out doing some fishing. "I'm no spy, I'm a pensioner," he toldExpressen. "You can tell that it's me [in the photo] by my straight jeans, and I usually have a backpack on."
In one of the more intriguing developments in the hunt, it was revealed late Monday that the Swedish military provided the media with an incorrect location of where one of the sightings had taken place, in an apparent effort to deceive their opponent. The Swedish military now deeply regrets that decision. "In retrospect, I should have been more clear at the press conference. What I showed on the map was an approximate position, as I did not want to reveal the exact location out of operational concerns," Grenstad said in a statement posted online.
Meanwhile, the Swedish Navy's inability to find a submarine is reigniting the political debate over Swedish defense spending. The lack of anti-submarine helicopters has become a central part of that debate, and it now turns out that some of the helicopters the navy needs can be found in a museum in the country's south. According to a former submarine hunter who works at the museum, the choppers -- known affectionately in Sweden as banana helicopters for their dual rotors -- could be made serviceable again.
But that would require time and money, neither of which the Swedish military has in great supply at the moment.
PONTUS LUNDAHL/AFP/Getty Images
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Russia's Civil Aviation Watchdog Blames Kiev for MH17 Crash
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 19:50
Updated 9:52 p.m. Moscow Time
MOSCOW, October 20 (RIA Novosti) - Kiev bears full responsibility for the crash of the Malaysian Boeing passenger plane in eastern Ukraine, other claims are pure speculations, Russia's civil aviation authority, Rosaviatsia, said Monday.
"The catastrophe occurred in the Ukrainian skies and Ukraine is fully responsible for everything that took place in the country's airspace," Rosaviatsia head Alexander Neradko said in an interview with the Rossiya 24 TV channel.
Commenting on a recent report by German intelligence on the downing of the Malaysian plane by a Buk missile fired by independence militia in eastern Ukraine, Neradko stressed that other claims about the causes of the crash appear to be pure speculations as they lack objectivity and cannot be supported by real evidence.
On Sunday, it was reported that Germany's foreign intelligence service (BND) had discovered that some of the evidence on the MH17 crash provided by Kiev was falsified. BND's chief Gerhard Schindler also claimed his agency had found out that independence supporters shot down the plane using a Buk missile system, though no evidence was unveiled.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it crashed in the Donetsk Region in eastern Ukraine on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.
The official cause of the tragedy is still unclear, but according to a preliminary report issued by the Dutch Safety Board on September 9, the plane broke up in mid-air as the result of structural damage caused by a large number of high-energy objects that penetrated the aircraft from the outside.
The Ukrainian government blames independence supporters of the eastern regions for downing the Malaysia Airlines plane, but the latter say they do not have weapons capable of bringing down an aircraft flying at high altitude.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Russia's Gazprom Completes 80% of Plan to Fill European Gas Storage Facilities
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 19:52
MOSCOW, October 20 (RIA Novosti) - Russian energy giant Gazprom has filled European underground storage facilities with 3.8 billion cubic meters of gas, with a total 5 billion planned, the company informed after an examination of energy readiness ahead of the 2014-2015 winter period.
"Gazprom continues the systematic filling of European underground gas storage facilities, which will give the additional guarantee of easy passing through peak times. The company has already filled the European gas storage facilities with over 3.8 billion cubic meters of its gas, the plan amounts to 5 billion. Apart from that, another 1.8 billion cubic meters of the company's [Gazprom's] gas has been pumped into the Inchukalnskoe gas storage facility [Latvia], with 2 billion cubic meters planned," the statement said.
Furthermore, Gazprom is continuing work on the creation of an operating reserve within Russian gas storage facilities with a volume of 71.1 billion cubic meters, which will be 2.1 billion greater than the 2013 volume and will be a record for a Russian gas field.
"Taking into account the gas storage facilities in Belarus, the Gazprom operating reserve will amount to 72.2 billion cubic meters, with a potential maximum daily output during the winter consumption period of 801.4 million cubic meters of gas. Also, in the beginning of 2014 Gazprom Armenia joined Gazprom, which has the Abovyanskoe gas storage facility with the following figures: operating gas reserve of 122 million cubic meters, potential daily output in the beginning of the consumption period - 9 million cubic meters," according to the statement.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
JKX hits pay in Ukraine
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 21:35
Submitted by Paddy Harris on 21st October 2014Reservoir properties are analogous to those in the producing wells in the adjacent Machevska field, one of the largest fields in Ukraine, which has a history of significant, sustained production from the deep sandstone reservoirs.
"Bringing the deep sandstone reservoirs of the Elizavetovskoye field on-stream is technically challenging and will require extended completion and testing,'' said Paul Davies, JKX chief executive. ''We are optimistic that the sandstone reservoirs will produce at commercial rates in line with the nearby wells. We will provide further updates as the work progresses."
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
War on Twitter
New report slams Twitter, Facebook and YouTube for secrecy around harassment of women online - The Washington Post
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 17:29
Major American tech companies regularly publish ''transparency'' statistics on things such as how many items they take down for copyright violations and how often the government requests user data.
But according to a scathing new report, when it comes to user abuse on their platforms '-- an issue that has seen an explosion of interest and concern over the past 12 months '-- social networks remain obstinately, even disingenuously, mum.
The report, which was released as part of the Association for Progressive Communications' ''Take Back the Tech'' campaign and funded in part by the Dutch government, analyzed Twitter, Facebook and YouTube's user policies and their public response to international abuse incidents over the past five years.
While the report's findings vary widely by platform, it points to one sweeping issue across the board: a total lack of transparency around how much abuse actually goes down on social media '-- particularly abuse directed at women '-- and how social media companies deal with it.
''These companies are responsible to their users, yet so much of what they do happens behind closed doors,'' said Sara Baker, ''Take Back the Tech's'' global coordinator with the APC. ''We would love to see data on how many people submit reports, their general demographics (including country and language) and the overall results of those reports. We also want to know more about the people making decisions behind the scenes. What countries do they live in? How are they trained?''
These questions spring from more than mere curiosity, the report points out: Without reliable data on abuse, there's no real way to scrutinize networks' response or hold them accountable to their users.
As things stand, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook all rely on user reports to flag inappropriate or abusive content. When someone flags something on YouTube, the content is surfaced to a 24-hour team for review. (An algorithm determines the priority of review, so a victim has no way of knowing how long that will take.) Meanwhile, when a user flags content on Twitter, that user receives an automated e-mail urging ''patience'' and promising Twitter's safety team will ''review your report and take action if the user is found to be in violation of our abusive behavior policy.''
There is never any indication, the APC report points out, of who looks at the report, what factors they consider, and how long they expect the process to take. There is also no way to appeal a decision.
''When content is reported to us that violates our rules, which include a ban on targeted abuse and direct violent threats, we suspend those accounts,'' a Twitter spokesman said, by way of explanation. ''We evaluate and refine our safety policies based on input from users, while working with outside organizations to ensure that we have industry best practices in place.''
Facebook is, to a certain extent, the only outlier here: Like Twitter and YouTube, the network is quick to promote its collaboration with outside victim support and advocacy groups. But unlike Twitter and YouTube, Facebook has publicly explained the intricacies of its reporting process and advertised a ballpark timeline '-- 72 hours '-- for ''the majority'' of reviews. The company's safety teams, operating in 20 languages, escalate some reports to law enforcement and crisis hotlines. And since 2012, a feature called the Support Dashboard has let victims track the status of their abuse reports '-- and why the decision came down the way it did.
That helps explain why Facebook alone of the three networks received a ''passing'' grade from APC; Twitter and YouTube both scored Fs on issues like ''engagement with stakeholder groups'' and ''proactive steps to eradicate violence against women.''
''We work hard to make sure that our community of more than one billion people has the best experience possible,'' said Monika Bickert, Facebook's Director of Public Policy. ''We've created a global set of Community Standards, we make it easy for people to report anything they see on Facebook, and we have a team of hundreds of people who respond to reports twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, in more than two dozen languages.''
Still, even Facebook doesn't publish its abuse numbers '-- the one metric, activists say, that would make the social network truly accountable to its users.
A Facebook spokesperson said the network is currently exploring ways to track more '-- and better '' abuse-reporting data, and wouldn't ''rule out'' the possibility of publishing it in the future. The site's system isn't presently designed to provide detailed breakdowns of data that is reported.
But Baker, of the APC, points out that there is some precedence for this type of action. Many tech companies have deployed startlingly effective, transparent policies around copyright, she notes. (Google's running Transparency Report goes so far as to log exactly how many copyright-takedown requests it receives per week, from which owners and on what domains.) This year, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube parent Google also all released diversity reports that broke down the racial and gender compositions of their staffs in response to public pressure on the issue. It's not inconceivable, nor technologically impossible, for those companies to do the same thing with their data on report volume and response times.
Until they do, the APC is asking users to publish data of their own: The organization is collecting user ratings of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube via the ''Take Back the Tech'' Web site. They do promise, notably, to publish that data soon.
Caitlin Dewey runs The Intersect blog, writing about digital and Internet culture. Before joining the Post, she was an associate online editor at Kiplinger's Personal Finance.
SECTION: {section=lifestyle, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
SECTION: {section=lifestyle, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
Full Transcript: Monica Lewinsky Speaks Out On Ending Online Abuse
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 17:48
Monica Lewinsky broke a decade-long public silence on Monday morning, delivering a speech to 1,000-plus young entrepreneurs and achievers at Forbes' 30 Under 30 Summit in Philadelphia. The full transcript is below.
Good Morning. It is only my fourth time delivering a speech in public. One was a practice, to a group of 20. One was a private event that was closed to the media. And then there was my brother's wedding, where much imbibing had already occurred. So if I seem nervous, forgive me, because I am. I'm a little emotional too.
My name is Monica Lewinsky. Though I have often been advised to change it, or asked why on earth I haven't. But, there we are. I haven't.
I am still Monica Lewinsky.
You are an audience of young superachievers, on average probably 15 years younger than me. Lucky, lucky you. And your youth is one of the reasons I wanted to talk to you today.
It does mean, though, that some of you might be asking: ''Who the h ell is she, this Monica? And what is she doing here?'' And maybe even, ''What is she doing in all those rap lyrics?''
Thank you, Beyonce and Eminem. And Nicki Minaj and Kid Cudi, Lil B and Lil Wayne, and of course G-eazy. But let's not forget Jeezy, and all the rest.
So allow me to briefly recap my story. Sixteen years ago, fresh out of college, a 22-year-old intern in the White House '-- and more than averagely romantic '' I fell in love with my boss in a 22-year-old sort of a way. It happens. But my boss was the President of the United States. That probably happens less often.
Now, I deeply regret it for many reasons. Not the least of which is that people were hurt. And that's never okay.
But back then, in 1995, we started an affair that lasted, on and off, for two years. And, at that time, it was my everything. That, I guess you could say, was the golden bubble part for me; the nice part. The nasty part was that it became public. Public with a vengeance.
Thanks to the internet and a website that at the time, was scarcely known outside of Washington DC but a website most of us know today called the Drudge report. Within 24 hours I became a public figure, not just in the United States but around the entire globe. As far as major news stories were concerned, this was the very first time that the traditional media was usurped by the Internet.
In 1998, as you can imagine, there was a media frenzy. Even though it was pre-Google, (that's right, pre-Google). The World Wide Web (as we called it back then) was already a big part of life.
Overnight, I went from being a completely private figure to a publicly humiliated one. I was Patient Zero.
The first person to have their reputation completely destroyed worldwide via the Internet. There was no Facebook, Twitter or Instagram back then. But there were gossip, news and entertainment websites replete with comment sections and emails could be forwarded.
Of course, it was all done on the excruciatingly slow dial-up. Yet around the world this story went. A viral phenomenon that, you could argue, was the first moment of truly ''social media.''
If only I could collect some royalties.
How on earth did this happen?
A sexual harassment case against a sitting President (brought by someone else, not me); a politically motivated independent prosecutor; a so-called friend, who had surreptitiously audio-taped over 20 hours of private and intimate phone chats.
(Turned out, not so private because she then turned them over to the same prosecutor.)
The confluence of these events were against a changing media backdrop with the advent of the 24 hour cable news networks and the internet, a perfect political media storm brewed.
This is what my world looked like: I was threatened in various ways. First, with an FBI sting in a shopping mall. It was just like you see in the movies. Imagine, one minute I was waiting to meet a friend in the food court and the next I realized she had set me up, as two FBI agents flashed their badges at me.
Immediately following, in a nearby hotel room, I was threatened with up to 27 years in jail for denying the affair in an affidavit and other alleged crimes. Twenty-seven years. When you're only 24 yourself, that's a long time.
Chillingly, told that my mother too might face prosecution if I didn't cooperate and wear a wire; (and, in case you didn't know, I did not wear the wire). My friends and my family were subpoenaed to testify against me.
For the first several months, I was unable to speak to my younger brother who was in college and some other family members to protect them from being dragged into the legal fray. Before a Grand Jury seated in the case of The United States vs. Lewinsky, I was called upon to testify to a room full of strangers on unimaginably intimate details of my life. Unimaginably intimate details which were later made public in a report online.
During this period, I gradually came to realize that there were two Monica Lewinskys. Yes, the world was big enough for two of us. There was me. And there was public Monica Lewinsky, a somewhat curious character constructed by political factions and the media, constructed with a little fact and a lot of fiction.
My friends didn't know that Monica; my family didn't know that Monica; and this Monica '' the real Monica standing here today '-- didn't know her either.
Let me tell you about being publicly separated from your truth. And I mean publicly in the broadest sense, because we all have our publics.
Being publicly separated from your truth is one of the classic triggers of anxiety, depression and self-loathing.
And the greater the distance between the you people want you to be and the you you actually are, the greater will be your anxiety, depression, sense of failure and shame.
When I ask myself how best to describe how the last 16 years has felt, I always come back to that word: Shame. My own personal shame, shame that befell my family, and shame that befell my country '' our country.
Frankly, I came close to disintegrating. No, it's not too strong a word. I wish it were, but it isn't.
That I didn't (or not completely) when things were at their worst was mainly thanks to the compassion of my friends and my family.
They gave me their love and support; we shared a lot of gallows humor '' a lot. And critically '' critically '-- they continued reflecting back to me, the real me.
But these are all just words. What does it actually feel like? What does it really feel like to watch yourself '' or your name and likeness'--to be ripped apart online?
Some of you may know this yourself. It feels like a punch in the gut. As if a stranger walked up to you on the street and punched you hard and sharp in the gut.
For me, that was every day in 1998. There was a rotation of worsening name calling and descriptions of me. I would go online, read in a paper or see on TV people referring to me as: tramp, slut, whore, tart, bimbo, floozy, even spy.
The New York Post's Page Six took to calling me, almost daily, the Portly Pepperpot. I was shattered.
Thankfully, people aren't punched every day on the street. But it happens all the time on the internet. Even as I'm talking to you now, this is happening to someone online. And depending on what you guys are tweeting, this may be happening to me later.
The experience of shame and humiliation online is different than offline. There is no way to wrap your mind around where the humiliation ends '-- there are no borders.
It honestly feels like the whole world is laughing at you. I know. I lived it.
A flashback. When the Starr Report was released online, on September 11, 1998, I was holed up in a New York City hotel room with my Sony Vaio laptop and a horrifically slow connection.
To keep me company, I had a gargantuan supply of peanut M&M's '-- my form of Xanax for the day.
Staring at the computer screen, I spent the day shouting: ''Oh my god!'' and ''I can't believe they put that in.'' Or ''That's so out of context.''
And those were the only thoughts that interrupted a relentless mantra in my head: I want to die.
This was different than the embarrassment I felt when my younger brother read my diary, or when my 7th grade crush shared the love letter I had written him with everyone he knew.
Now, my brother '' and all his fraternity brothers '' were privy to my most intimate details. As were my dad and his fellow doctors. And my stepdad, and his World War 2 war buddies. My stepmom and her knitting circle. Even both my grandmothers, then in their 80s, knew about the internet. My whole family. My friends. My friends' parents. My parents' friends.
I would read later that when Congress released the Starr Report online it was the first time you missed history being made if you didn't have access to the internet.
But almost worse, I knew, as I painstakingly read each word that there was not a connected person in the world who wasn't reading it too.
The image of strangers reading the report was endless '' there was no border. That amplified by a thousand fold the shame and humiliation I felt.
I couldn't imagine ever showing my face in public again. I cringed. I yelled. I sobbed. And the mantra continued: I just want to die.
Let's come back to now, to 2014.
We are all vulnerable to humiliation, private and public figures alike. (I'm sure Jennifer Lawrence would agree with that. Or any of the 90,000 people whose private Snapchat pictures were released last week during ''the Snappening'').
The consequences can be devastating. And anyone can be next. One day in 2010, an 18-year-old Rutgers freshman called Tyler Clementi, was next. After his roommate secretly videotape streamed him via Webcam kissing another man, Tyler was derided and ridiculed online.
A few days later, submerged in the shame and public humiliation, he jumped from the George Washington Bridge to his death.
That tragedy is one of the principal reasons I am standing up here today. While it touched us both, my mother was unusually upset by the story and I wondered why. Eventually it dawned on me: she was back in 1998, back to a time when I was periodically suicidal; when she might very easily have lost me; when I, too, might have been humiliated to death.
Tyler's story is meaningful to me. His parents, whom I have now met, have set up the Tyler Clementi Foundation in his memory.
The outstanding mission of that foundation is to promote '' I am quoting now '' ''safe, inclusive and respectful social environments for vulnerable youth, LGBT youth and their allies.'' The Clementi's tragedy was four years ago.
Quite sadly, the trend of being humiliated to death online has only continued.
Of the cyberbullying related suicides in the last decade, 43% have occurred since Tyler sadly jumped from that bridge. And that's not even including stats for last year.
Among young Facebook users, close to 54% say they've been cyberbullied.
College kids? One in 5 report being victims of cyberbullying; 1 in 4 for young women. And it's not just those younger than you, it's my generation and above, too. No one is immune.
It's been said: It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation but you can lose it in a minute. That's never been more true than today.
You're not here in this room by accident. You're here, all of you, because of your reputations in your chosen fields, your reputations as talented, driven, serious people with something important to contribute to the world.
Reputation is important to everybody whether you're exceptional people like yourselves or people who count themselves as ordinary.
A reputation isn't like a fashion accessory or a status symbol: an Apple watch, a Tesla or even an engagement ring from Tiffany's (though I wouldn't mind one of those).
It's part of who you are. It's part of who you are, socially and professionally. It's part of how you think about yourselves. It's part of your personal and your public identity. Lose it, as you so easily can, and you lose an integral part of yourself.
That's what happened to me in 1998 when public Monica '' that Monica, that woman '' was born. The creature from the media lagoon.
I lost my reputation. I was publicly identified as someone I didn't recognize. And I lost my sense of self. Lost it, or had it stolen; because in a way, it was a form of identity theft.
Today, I think of myself as someone who '' who the hell knows how '' survived. Believe me, denial can be pretty useful still, but these days I need it less and less and in smaller and smaller doses.
But having survived myself, what I want to do now is help other victims of the shame game survive too. I want to put my suffering to good use and give purpose to my past.
Remember the words of Carl Rogers, the psychologist, ''the most personal is the most universal.'' People who share with me their experiences often qualify what they say. ''Oh, it was a nightmare for me but of course nothing compared to what happened to you.''
What I say to them is, if I drowned in 60 feet of water, and you in 30, is there really a difference? We both drowned.
But there are those who say, Monica, why don't you just shut up? Why don't you just go away? They said it in June, after a piece I wrote in Vanity Fair, my first public words in over ten years. And they will say it today after this one, my first major public talk, ever, and they will say it tomorrow and the day after that.
''They'' never shut up.
The problem is that I believe in the power of story. In the power of stories to inspire, comfort, educate and change things for the better: fictional stories, stories from history, news stories and yes, personal stories. I believe my story can help.
Help to do something to change the culture of humiliation we inhabit and that inhabits us. I had been publicly silent for a decade. But now, I must '' as T.S. Eliot's Prufrock said '' disturb the universe.
Prufrock didn't. I understand and empathize with him. But in the end, I'm no Prufrock. Bystander apathy is half the problem. I'd much rather be part of the solution. I don't know which came first: the coarsening of the culture or the worsening of behavior.
Either way, what we need is a radical change in attitudes '-- on the internet, mobile platforms and in the society of which they are a part.
Actually, what we really need is a cultural revolution. Online, we've got a compassion deficit '' an Empathy Crisis '-- and something tells me that matters a lot more to most of us.
Oscar Wilde wrote: ''I have said that behind sorrow there is always sorrow. It were wiser still to say that behind sorrow there is always a soul. And to mock at a soul in pain is a dreadful thing.''
My feelings, exactly.
Thank you for your time.
Also on Forbes:
Follow me on Twitter and Facebook.
About APC | Association for Progressive Communications
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 17:33
APC members and staff. Photo: Mihaly Bako.APC's strength lies in the fact that we don't get excited about the internet for the internet's sake. We are committed activists who want to use it to make the world a better place.
We help people get access to the internet where there is none or it is unaffordable, we help grassroots groups use the technology to develop their communities and further their rights, and we work to make sure that government policies related to information and communication serve the best interests of the general population, especially people living in developing countries.
The APC visionAll people have easy and affordable access to a free and open internet to improve their lives and create a more just world.
The APC missionAPC's mission is to empower and support organisations, social movements and individuals in and through the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to build strategic communities and initiatives for the purpose of making meaningful contributions to equitable human development, social justice, participatory political processes and environmental sustainability.
A network and an organisationAPC is both a network and an organisation. APC members are groups working in their own countries to advance the same mission as APC. In December 2010, APC had 50 members in 35 countries, the majority from developing countries.
The membership define APC's strategic priorities every five years. APC has a small staff, each living in different countries and communicating day-to-day over the internet (we have no central headquarters). APC's value and uniqueness come from the local perspectives and contact with grassroots organisations that we gain from our members and the fact that we operate as a truly virtual, international organisation.
How we workWe organise our work in three programme areas:
Take Back the Tech! '' an annual campaign since 2006Our strongest activities are often those taking place at the local or national level where the real impact can be felt, and from which the network can learn and replicate regionally or internationally. We work best when we can really work as a network '' i.e., programmes and members work together to conceptualise projects and campaigns and then implement them together.
APC values working with other people beyond our own network. We are aware of our own limitations as well as the power of networking. Where we lack knowledge or expertise and need to learn in order to better engage challenges, we form partnerships. In all of APC's work we encourage people to network as a means of making other activities more sustainable. If people share their experiences and skills they have greater value over a longer period and often create a ripple effect.
Strategic priorities for 2013-16Established by our international membership, APC the worldwide network has committed to:
Securing and defending internet access and rightsFostering good internet governanceStrengthening use and development of transformative technologyEnding technology-based violence against women and girlsStrengthening APC community networksFind out more about the strategic priorities.
Consultative status to the United NationsWe are an active participant in high level international ICT policy discussions, and were granted category one consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) in 1995.
Legal statusWe were founded in 1990, and operated legally as a partner of the Tides Foundation until 1998, when we were incorporated as a nonprofit under section 501( c ) (3), public charity status 170 (b) (1) (A) (vi) state of California, USA. APC is governed according to the nonprofit regulations of the State of California, even though we are an international network.
The big picture, year after yearIf you want to gain a quick overview of APC for a given year visit the Publication section of our website where you will find our annual reports .
2TTH
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total CEO de Margerie killed in Moscow as jet hits snow plow
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:54
Total CEO de Margerie killed in Moscow as jet hits snow plowTop News
Total CEO de Margerie killed in Moscow as jet hits snow plow
Tue, Oct 21 12:44 PM EDT
By Vladimir Soldatkin and James Regan
MOSCOW/PARIS (Reuters) - Christophe de Margerie, the charismatic and outspoken chief executive of the French oil company Total (TOTF.PA), was killed when his private jet hit a snow plow as it was taking off from Moscow's Vnukovo airport on Monday night.
His death leaves a void at the top of one of the world's biggest listed oil firms at a difficult time for the industry as oil prices fall and state-backed competitors keep them out of some of the best oil exploration territory.
De Margerie, 63, was a strong opponent of Western economic sanctions against Russia over its actions in Ukraine, and had been attending a meeting on foreign investment with around 30 other foreign executives at Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's country residence in Gorki near Moscow.
The crash occurred around midnight Moscow time as his Dassault Falcon was taking off for Paris in poor visibility. The plane's three crew were also killed, but television footage showed the snowplow driver seemingly unhurt.
Total is France's second-biggest listed company, with a market value of 102 billion euros ($130 billion) that makes it the fourth largest Western oil company, behind Exxon (XOM.N), Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and Chevron (CVX.N).
In a brief news conference on Tuesday, Total's secretary-general, Jean-Jacques Guilbaud, said its governance committee and board would meet "as soon as possible".
"Total will keep going," he said. "The group is organized to ensure the continuity of its governance."
With his distinctive bushy mustache and outspoken manner, de Margerie was one of the most recognizable of oil executives and a personal friend of French President Francois Hollande.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls said France had lost "an extraordinary business leader who turned Total into a world giant".
Ben van Beurden, chief executive of Total's rival Royal Dutch Shell, said de Margerie had been "a larger than life character, a leader respected across the energy industry and a friend".
De Margerie ran Total's exploration and production division before becoming CEO in 2007, but only took full control with the additional role of chairman in May 2010.
Known inside the company as "The Big Mustache", he said in July that he should be judged on the new projects launched on his watch, including a string of African fields.
He also said then that Total, which has not announced any official succession plan, would name a successor from within.
POTENTIAL SUCCESSORS
Philippe Boisseau, head of Total's renewable energy division, and Patrick Pouyanne, who was charged with reducing exposure to unprofitable European refining sectors, have long been seen as potential successors.
By 9.20 a.m. EDT, Total's share was up 2.6 percent at 44.05 euros, broadly in line with other European majors such as Shell and BP (BP.L).
Barclays France director Franklin Pichard said de Margerie's death "shouldn't trigger insurmountable management difficulties".
Ion-Marc Valahu, fund manager at Swiss investment firm Clairinvest, agreed. "I think the Total management is pretty strong," he said. "The board has been there for a long time."
De Margerie was a staunch defender of Russia and its energy policies, as the conflict in Ukraine has raised tensions with the West to levels not seen since the Cold War, and triggered economic sanctions against Moscow.
Total is one of the biggest foreign investors in Russia, where its output is due to double by 2020.
De Margerie told Reuters in July that Europe should stop thinking about cutting its dependence on Russian gas and focus instead on making those deliveries safer.
He said tensions between the West and Russia were pushing Moscow closer to China, as illustrated by a $400 billion deal to supply Beijing with gas that was clinched in May.
"Are we going to build a new Berlin Wall?" he said. "Russia is a partner and we shouldn't waste time protecting ourselves from a neighbor ... What we are looking to do is not to be too dependent on any country, no matter which. Not from Russia, which has saved us on numerous occasions."
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent condolences, praising de Margerie's commitment to Russian-French relations.Total said last month that sanctions would not stop it working on the Yamal project, a $27 billion joint venture to tap vast natural gas reserves in northwest Siberia that aims to double Russia's stake in the fast-growing market for liquefied natural gas. De Margerie said then that Europe could not live without Russian gas, and that there was no reason to do so.
Russia accounted for about 9 percent of Total's oil and gas output in 2013. The firm said in April that Russia would become its biggest source of oil and gas by 2020 due to Yamal, and its partnership with the Russian energy company Novatek (NVTK.MM).
De Margerie also worked to ensure that Total would be in pole position to return to Iran if Western economic sanctions there were lifted.
However, Total's dealings with Iran and Iraq in the 1990s dogged de Margerie's tenure. Last year, the firm agreed to pay $398 million to settle U.S. criminal and civil allegations that it had paid bribes to win oil and gas contracts in Iran.
Separately, Total, de Margerie himself and 17 other executives were tried in France last year for corruption linked to the U.N. oil-for-food program in Iraq, in which $1.8 billion flowed illicitly to Saddam Hussein's government, but all were cleared.
Like other big oil companies, Total has been under pressure from shareholders to cut costs and raise dividends as rising costs and weaker oil prices have squeezed profitability.
After struggling with production outages in Libya, Kazakhstan and Nigeria, it cut its oil output targets and said last month that it would step up asset sales.
It also said it would overhaul its approach to exploration after a "high-risk, high-reward" drilling strategy, launched two years ago and generally welcomed by industry experts, failed to discover any large deposits.
Russia's Investigative Committee said it had opened a criminal investigation into the crash.
It said the driver had been found to be drunk, but that investigators were also examining the actions of the air traffic controllers and the flight crew. The driver's lawyer said the driver had been following instructions from air traffic control, and that his relatives had said he never drank alcohol.
The airport, which is used by Putin and other government officials, said visibility had been down to 350 meters (1,150 feet) at the time of the crash.
Russia's air safety record is patchy at best.
In December 2012, a Russian airliner flying without passengers broke into pieces after sliding off the runway upon landing and crashing onto a highway outside Vnukovo Airport, -killing four of the eight crew.
(Additional reporting by Dmitry Zhdannikov, James Regan, Dominique Vidalon and Andrew Callus in Paris and Florance Tan in Singapore; Writing by Howard Goller and Dean Yates; Editing by Kevin Liffey)
Total CEO de Margerie killed in Moscow as jet hits snow plowTop News
Total CEO de Margerie killed in Moscow as jet hits snow plow
Tue, Oct 21 12:44 PM EDT
By Vladimir Soldatkin and James Regan
MOSCOW/PARIS (Reuters) - Christophe de Margerie, the charismatic and outspoken chief executive of the French oil company Total (TOTF.PA), was killed when his private jet hit a snow plow as it was taking off from Moscow's Vnukovo airport on Monday night.
His death leaves a void at the top of one of the world's biggest listed oil firms at a difficult time for the industry as oil prices fall and state-backed competitors keep them out of some of the best oil exploration territory.
De Margerie, 63, was a strong opponent of Western economic sanctions against Russia over its actions in Ukraine, and had been attending a meeting on foreign investment with around 30 other foreign executives at Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's country residence in Gorki near Moscow.
The crash occurred around midnight Moscow time as his Dassault Falcon was taking off for Paris in poor visibility. The plane's three crew were also killed, but television footage showed the snowplow driver seemingly unhurt.
Total is France's second-biggest listed company, with a market value of 102 billion euros ($130 billion) that makes it the fourth largest Western oil company, behind Exxon (XOM.N), Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L) and Chevron (CVX.N).
In a brief news conference on Tuesday, Total's secretary-general, Jean-Jacques Guilbaud, said its governance committee and board would meet "as soon as possible".
"Total will keep going," he said. "The group is organized to ensure the continuity of its governance."
With his distinctive bushy mustache and outspoken manner, de Margerie was one of the most recognizable of oil executives and a personal friend of French President Francois Hollande.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls said France had lost "an extraordinary business leader who turned Total into a world giant".
Ben van Beurden, chief executive of Total's rival Royal Dutch Shell, said de Margerie had been "a larger than life character, a leader respected across the energy industry and a friend".
De Margerie ran Total's exploration and production division before becoming CEO in 2007, but only took full control with the additional role of chairman in May 2010.
Known inside the company as "The Big Mustache", he said in July that he should be judged on the new projects launched on his watch, including a string of African fields.
He also said then that Total, which has not announced any official succession plan, would name a successor from within.
POTENTIAL SUCCESSORS
Philippe Boisseau, head of Total's renewable energy division, and Patrick Pouyanne, who was charged with reducing exposure to unprofitable European refining sectors, have long been seen as potential successors.
By 9.20 a.m. EDT, Total's share was up 2.6 percent at 44.05 euros, broadly in line with other European majors such as Shell and BP (BP.L).
Barclays France director Franklin Pichard said de Margerie's death "shouldn't trigger insurmountable management difficulties".
Ion-Marc Valahu, fund manager at Swiss investment firm Clairinvest, agreed. "I think the Total management is pretty strong," he said. "The board has been there for a long time."
De Margerie was a staunch defender of Russia and its energy policies, as the conflict in Ukraine has raised tensions with the West to levels not seen since the Cold War, and triggered economic sanctions against Moscow.
Total is one of the biggest foreign investors in Russia, where its output is due to double by 2020.
De Margerie told Reuters in July that Europe should stop thinking about cutting its dependence on Russian gas and focus instead on making those deliveries safer.
He said tensions between the West and Russia were pushing Moscow closer to China, as illustrated by a $400 billion deal to supply Beijing with gas that was clinched in May.
"Are we going to build a new Berlin Wall?" he said. "Russia is a partner and we shouldn't waste time protecting ourselves from a neighbor ... What we are looking to do is not to be too dependent on any country, no matter which. Not from Russia, which has saved us on numerous occasions."
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent condolences, praising de Margerie's commitment to Russian-French relations.Total said last month that sanctions would not stop it working on the Yamal project, a $27 billion joint venture to tap vast natural gas reserves in northwest Siberia that aims to double Russia's stake in the fast-growing market for liquefied natural gas. De Margerie said then that Europe could not live without Russian gas, and that there was no reason to do so.
Russia accounted for about 9 percent of Total's oil and gas output in 2013. The firm said in April that Russia would become its biggest source of oil and gas by 2020 due to Yamal, and its partnership with the Russian energy company Novatek (NVTK.MM).
De Margerie also worked to ensure that Total would be in pole position to return to Iran if Western economic sanctions there were lifted.
However, Total's dealings with Iran and Iraq in the 1990s dogged de Margerie's tenure. Last year, the firm agreed to pay $398 million to settle U.S. criminal and civil allegations that it had paid bribes to win oil and gas contracts in Iran.
Separately, Total, de Margerie himself and 17 other executives were tried in France last year for corruption linked to the U.N. oil-for-food program in Iraq, in which $1.8 billion flowed illicitly to Saddam Hussein's government, but all were cleared.
Like other big oil companies, Total has been under pressure from shareholders to cut costs and raise dividends as rising costs and weaker oil prices have squeezed profitability.
After struggling with production outages in Libya, Kazakhstan and Nigeria, it cut its oil output targets and said last month that it would step up asset sales.
It also said it would overhaul its approach to exploration after a "high-risk, high-reward" drilling strategy, launched two years ago and generally welcomed by industry experts, failed to discover any large deposits.
Russia's Investigative Committee said it had opened a criminal investigation into the crash.
It said the driver had been found to be drunk, but that investigators were also examining the actions of the air traffic controllers and the flight crew. The driver's lawyer said the driver had been following instructions from air traffic control, and that his relatives had said he never drank alcohol.
The airport, which is used by Putin and other government officials, said visibility had been down to 350 meters (1,150 feet) at the time of the crash.
Russia's air safety record is patchy at best.
In December 2012, a Russian airliner flying without passengers broke into pieces after sliding off the runway upon landing and crashing onto a highway outside Vnukovo Airport, -killing four of the eight crew.
(Additional reporting by Dmitry Zhdannikov, James Regan, Dominique Vidalon and Andrew Callus in Paris and Florance Tan in Singapore; Writing by Howard Goller and Dean Yates; Editing by Kevin Liffey)
Medvedev: Death of Total CEO Big Loss for Russia
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:47
MOSCOW, October 21 (RIA Novosti) '' Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on Tuesday expressed his condolences to the family of Christophe de Margerie, the head of French energy giant Total, who died in a jet accident in Moscow on Monday night.
''It's a big loss. Mr. de Margerie was a friend and a partner of our country. He always openly stated his position on all pressing issues. We will miss him,'' Medvedev said.
The Russian prime minister also expressed his condolences to the families of the crew members who died in the accident.
Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed his condolences over the Total chief executive's death earlier in the day.
The Falcon 50 business jet crashed late Monday night in the Vnukovo-3 Airport in Moscow after the aircraft hit a snow removal vehicle on takeoff. The aircraft was flying from Moscow to Paris with de Margerie as the only passenger on board besides three crew members, also French citizens. All four people died in the crash.
Russia's Investigative Committee is considering two main theories as to the cause of the crash - a traffic control mistake and the actions of the snowplow driver, who was found to be drunk at the time of the accident. The investigators are also checking if the plane could have crashed due to bad weather conditions or a mistake by the pilot.
A criminal investigation has been launched into a possible violation of aircraft safe-driving regulations, resulting in the death of two or more persons.
The black boxes have been recovered and are currently being processed.
Christophe de Margerie killed in Moscow jet collision
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:43
All four people on board his corporate jet were killed when it collided with a snowplough and caught alight just before midnight last night.
"Total confirms with deep regret and great sadness that Chairman and CEO Christophe de Margerie died just after 10pm (Paris time) on October 20 in a private plane crash at Vnukovo Airport in Moscow, following a collision with a snow removal machine," the company said in a statement.
Russian investigators have reported that the driver of the snow plough was drunk and visibility at the airport was poor.
De Margerie, 63, had worked at Total for 40 years and been the French energy giant's chief executive since 2007.
"France is losing an extraordinary business leader who turned Total into a world giant," French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said in a statement.
De Margerie had just left a meeting with Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev at his Gorki residence on the outskirts of Moscow, where they had discussed bilateral trade and the continued development of Russia's oil and gas industry.
De Margerie was a firm believer in maintaining strong business ties with Russia despite international diplomatic pressures, with Total planning to double its output from Russian fields by 2020.
Last montth Total said that it would continue work at its USD 27bn Yamal LNG project joint venture with Novatek depite international sanctions.
Total names Patrick Pouyann(C) as CEO and Thierry Desmarest as caretaker chairman
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 14:55
The French supermajor has named Patrick Pouyann(C) as chief executive officer and president of the executive committee today following the unexpected death on Monday of Christophe de Margerie.
Pouyann(C) had previously held the role of president of refining and chemicals, and was already a member of the company's executive committee. Many in the industry are speculating on the company's future without de Margerie's strong leadership.
Total has previously committed itself to acquiring a wide portfolio of exploration and production assets and has been outspoken in its commitment to exploring for oil and gas anywhere in the world in spite of diplomatic issues and pressures.
Pouyann(C) is a graduate of ‰cole Polytechnique and an Engineer of the French Corps des Mines. From 1989 to 1996, he held various positions in the french industry ministry and in ministerial offices, including environment and industry technical advisor to the prime minister from 1993 to 1995 and chief of staff to the information technology and space minister from 1995 to 1996.
He joined Total in January 1997, as chief administrative officer of Total E&P Angola and became group representative in Qatar and CEO of Total E&P Qatar in 1999.
In August 2002, he was named senior vice president of finance, economics and information systems in exploration and production. In January 2006, he became senior vice president of strategy, business development and research and development in exploration and production.
Pouyann(C) has been a member of Total's management committee since May 2006.
In March 2011, he was appointed senior vice president of chemicals and senior vice president of petrochemicals.
In January 2012, Pouyann(C) was appointed president, refining and chemicals and member of the executive committee.
Total has also raised Thierry Desmarest from honorary to official chairman of the board of directors.
Desmarest's time as chairman will be brief as he will have reached the company's executive age limit next year. Total plans to recombine the positions of chairman of the board of directors and chief executive officer following Desmarest's departure at the end of 2015.
Also a graduate of the ‰cole Polytechnique and an Engineer of the French Corps des Mines, Desmarest served as director of mines and geology in New Caledonia, then as technical advisor at the offices of the minister of industry and the minister of economy.
He joined Total in 1981, where he held various management positions, then served as president of exploration and production until 1995.
He served as chairman and chief executive officer of Total from May 1995 until February 2007, and then as chairman of the board of Total until May 21, 2010.
He was appointed honorary chairman and remains a director of Total and chairman of the Total Foundation.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
ASN Aircraft accident Dassault Falcon 50EX F-GLSA Moskva-Vnukovo Airport (VKO)
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 22:57
Narrative:A Dassault Falcon 50EX corporate jet was destroyed in a takeoff accident at Moscow's Vnukovo Airport in Russia. The three crew members and the passenger, CEO of oil company Total, Christophe de Margerie, were killed.The airplane was cleared for takeoff from runway 06. During takeoff the jet impacted a snowplow. The airplane rolled over and burst into flames.Take-off was carried out in a meteorological visibility of 350 m, friction coefficient of 0.5.
Debris from the aircraft was scattered up to 200 meters from the crash site, according to the rescue services. The engine was found some 50 meters from the crash site, while one of the landing gears was ripped off and discovered nearly 200 meters from the main mass of debris.
Classification:
Sources:
>> RT>> Vnukovo Airport>> BEA>> MAKMETAR Weather report:
19:30 UTC / 23:30 local time:UUWW 201930Z 13003MPS 0600 R06/1400D -DZ FG VV002 01/01 Q0994 06510150 TEMPO 0200 FG OVC00120:00 UTC / 00:00 local time:UUWW 202000Z 13003MPS 0350 R06/0900V1100U -DZ FG VV003 01/01 Q0994 06510150 TEMPO 0200 FG OVC001Photos
Video/animation
This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network's opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Total and Gazprom Neft launch high-spec bitumen production at Russian refinery
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 23:53
The facility, constructed under a joint venture between Gazprom Neft and Total, has capacity of 60,000 tons of PMBs and 7,000 tons of emulsified bitumen per year.
Production is undertaken on the basis of Total's Styrelf technology '-- a process which involves the addition of a special binding agent (PAXL) that results in additional bonding at the molecular level, meaning road surfaces are built with bitumens far more resistant to cracking and fracturing, even under significant traffic loads and under widely ranging temperatures.
The useful life of such roads is increased two-fold in comparison with those surfaced with traditional bitumens. The Styrelf technology was specially adopted to meet Russian climatic conditions.
Raw materials for G-Way Styrelf PMBs are sourced from the bitumen facility at the Gazprom Neft Moscow refinery '-- fully reconstructed in 2012, with production of bitumen materials increasing to 1.7 million tonnes per year, and atmospheric emissions decreasing by 90 per cent, as a result.
''Experts expect the use of PMBs in road construction in Russia to increase three-fold by 2025,'' said Alexander Dyukov, chairman of Gazprom Neft's.
''Gazprom Neft '-- already the leading producer of high-quality bitumen on the domestic market '-- is implementing the most cutting-edge technology to allow not just the construction of world-class roads, but also a significant reduction in the costs associated with maintaining them.''
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Kaczynski Catastrophe Investigator to Lead Total CEO Jet Crash Probe
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 15:19
MOSCOW, October 22 (RIA Novosti) '' The plane crash at Moscow's Vnukovo-3 Airport, which took lives of four people, including Total CEO Christophe de Margerie, will be investigated by the same person who probed into Polish President Lech Kaczynski's plane crash in Smolensk, Russia, in 2010, Russian newspaper Kommersant reported Wednesday.
"Due to the high status of both de Margerie and the airport which is used by senior officials, the investigation ... was assigned to a member of Russia's Investigative Committee, Mikhail Gurevich," the newspaper said.
On Tuesday, the Interstate Aviation Committee, an air disaster investigation authority in Russia and other ex-Soviet states, announced that it had set up a special commission to investigate the crash. The experts from the French authority responsible for safety probes into civil aviation incidents (BEA) arrived in Moscow to assist the investigation.
A business jet departing for Paris crashed late Monday night at Vnukovo-3 Airport after hitting a snowplow during takeoff. None of the four people on board '' de Margerie and three crew members '' survived.
Russia's Investigative Committee is considering two main possibilities as to the cause of the crash '' a traffic control mistake and the actions of the snowplow driver. Investigators are also checking if the plane could have crashed due to bad weather conditions or a mistake by the pilot.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SnowJob
Exclusive: NSA reviewing deal between official, ex-spy agency head
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:16
Exclusive: NSA reviewing deal between official, ex-spy agency headTop News
Exclusive: NSA reviewing deal between official, ex-spy agency head
Fri, Oct 17 14:47 PM EDT
By Warren Strobel and Mark Hosenball
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. National Security Agency has launched an internal review of a senior official's part-time work for a private venture started by former NSA director Keith Alexander that raises questions over the blurring of lines between government and business.
Under the arrangement, which was confirmed by Alexander and current intelligence officials, NSA's Chief Technical Officer, Patrick Dowd, is allowed to work up to 20 hours a week at IronNet Cybersecurity Inc, the private firm led by Alexander, a retired Army general and his former boss.
The arrangement was approved by top NSA managers, current and former officials said. It does not appear to break any laws and it could not be determined whether Dowd has actually begun working for Alexander, who retired from the NSA in March.
In a statement in response to inquiries by Reuters, NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines said, "This matter is under internal review. While NSA does not comment on specific employees, NSA takes seriously ethics laws and regulations at all levels of the organization."
Current and former U.S. intelligence officials, some of whom requested anonymity to discuss personnel matters, said they could not recall a previous instance in which a high-ranking U.S. intelligence official was allowed to concurrently work for a private-sector firm.
They said it risked a conflict of interest between sensitive government work and private business, and could be seen as giving favoritism to Alexander's venture. IronNet Cybersecurity is developing a new approach to protect computer networks from hackers and is marketing it to financial institutions and other private-sector firms.
Alexander, who was the eavesdropping and code-breaking agency's longest-serving director, confirmed the arrangement with Dowd in an interview with Reuters. He said he understood it had been approved by all the necessary government authorities, and that IronNet Cybersecurity, not the government, would pay for Dowd's time spent with the firm.
Dowd, he said, wanted to join IronNet, and the deal was devised as a way to keep Dowd's technological expertise at least partly within the U.S. government, rather than losing him permanently to the private sector.
"I wanted Pat to stay at NSA. He wanted to come on board," Alexander said.
He acknowledged that the hybrid arrangement "is awkward," but added, "I just felt that his leaving the government was the wrong thing for NSA and our nation."
Dowd did not respond to requests for comment.
Alexander and Dowd have jointly filed patents based on technology they developed while at the NSA. Alexander said the cybersecurity techniques that IronNet is developing are not based on those patents.
''UNUSUAL''
The NSA's review comes at a sensitive time for the electronic spy agency, which last year went through the worst crisis in its 62-year history following revelations by former contractor Edward Snowden of widespread government electronic surveillance.
The NSA, whose technological wizardry helped the U.S. government eavesdrop on Soviet leaders during the Cold War and is an important ingredient in the Obama administration's counter-terrorism efforts, is based in Fort Meade, Maryland, about 25 miles (15 km) from Washington D.C., where IronNet is headquartered.
In an earlier statement to Reuters, spokeswoman Vines said that "under ethics rules, senior executive employees, among others, are required to obtain written permission through their supervisors if they wish to pursue outside employment with a prohibited source."
Stewart Baker, a former NSA general counsel, said that he had never heard of an arrangement under which an NSA executive is allowed to work part time for a private company presumed to be involved in some of the same type of business as the NSA.
"I agree this is unusual," Baker said, adding, "It's complex, but probably manageable."
Baker said that there is already a program in place which allows government executives to leave, spend some time in the private sector, and then return to government without giving up seniority or other rights. Such arrangements traditionally require a total break with government service.
Paul Rothstein, a criminal law and ethics professor at Georgetown University law school, said the arrangement in which NSA is allowing Dowd to work part time for Alexander's company "seems problematic."
"If it isn't structured very carefully, this runs the risk of conflict of interest and disclosure of national secrets," Rothstein said. "It is a situation that in the interests of good government should be avoided unless there's some very strong reason to do it."
(Editing by Jason Szep, Toni Reinhold)
Exclusive: NSA reviewing deal between official, ex-spy agency headTop News
Exclusive: NSA reviewing deal between official, ex-spy agency head
Fri, Oct 17 14:47 PM EDT
By Warren Strobel and Mark Hosenball
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. National Security Agency has launched an internal review of a senior official's part-time work for a private venture started by former NSA director Keith Alexander that raises questions over the blurring of lines between government and business.
Under the arrangement, which was confirmed by Alexander and current intelligence officials, NSA's Chief Technical Officer, Patrick Dowd, is allowed to work up to 20 hours a week at IronNet Cybersecurity Inc, the private firm led by Alexander, a retired Army general and his former boss.
The arrangement was approved by top NSA managers, current and former officials said. It does not appear to break any laws and it could not be determined whether Dowd has actually begun working for Alexander, who retired from the NSA in March.
In a statement in response to inquiries by Reuters, NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines said, "This matter is under internal review. While NSA does not comment on specific employees, NSA takes seriously ethics laws and regulations at all levels of the organization."
Current and former U.S. intelligence officials, some of whom requested anonymity to discuss personnel matters, said they could not recall a previous instance in which a high-ranking U.S. intelligence official was allowed to concurrently work for a private-sector firm.
They said it risked a conflict of interest between sensitive government work and private business, and could be seen as giving favoritism to Alexander's venture. IronNet Cybersecurity is developing a new approach to protect computer networks from hackers and is marketing it to financial institutions and other private-sector firms.
Alexander, who was the eavesdropping and code-breaking agency's longest-serving director, confirmed the arrangement with Dowd in an interview with Reuters. He said he understood it had been approved by all the necessary government authorities, and that IronNet Cybersecurity, not the government, would pay for Dowd's time spent with the firm.
Dowd, he said, wanted to join IronNet, and the deal was devised as a way to keep Dowd's technological expertise at least partly within the U.S. government, rather than losing him permanently to the private sector.
"I wanted Pat to stay at NSA. He wanted to come on board," Alexander said.
He acknowledged that the hybrid arrangement "is awkward," but added, "I just felt that his leaving the government was the wrong thing for NSA and our nation."
Dowd did not respond to requests for comment.
Alexander and Dowd have jointly filed patents based on technology they developed while at the NSA. Alexander said the cybersecurity techniques that IronNet is developing are not based on those patents.
''UNUSUAL''
The NSA's review comes at a sensitive time for the electronic spy agency, which last year went through the worst crisis in its 62-year history following revelations by former contractor Edward Snowden of widespread government electronic surveillance.
The NSA, whose technological wizardry helped the U.S. government eavesdrop on Soviet leaders during the Cold War and is an important ingredient in the Obama administration's counter-terrorism efforts, is based in Fort Meade, Maryland, about 25 miles (15 km) from Washington D.C., where IronNet is headquartered.
In an earlier statement to Reuters, spokeswoman Vines said that "under ethics rules, senior executive employees, among others, are required to obtain written permission through their supervisors if they wish to pursue outside employment with a prohibited source."
Stewart Baker, a former NSA general counsel, said that he had never heard of an arrangement under which an NSA executive is allowed to work part time for a private company presumed to be involved in some of the same type of business as the NSA.
"I agree this is unusual," Baker said, adding, "It's complex, but probably manageable."
Baker said that there is already a program in place which allows government executives to leave, spend some time in the private sector, and then return to government without giving up seniority or other rights. Such arrangements traditionally require a total break with government service.
Paul Rothstein, a criminal law and ethics professor at Georgetown University law school, said the arrangement in which NSA is allowing Dowd to work part time for Alexander's company "seems problematic."
"If it isn't structured very carefully, this runs the risk of conflict of interest and disclosure of national secrets," Rothstein said. "It is a situation that in the interests of good government should be avoided unless there's some very strong reason to do it."
(Editing by Jason Szep, Toni Reinhold)
Exclusive: Key NSA Official Has Another Business At Her Home
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:21
The National Security Agency in Fort Meade, Maryland.Larry Downing / Reuters / Reuters
On a quiet street in Ellicott City, Maryland, a blue-grey two-story clapboard house, set back from the road, is shaded by two sycamores and a towering maple. It's the unassuming home of one of the National Security Agency's most powerful officials, Teresa H. Shea.
In September, BuzzFeed News disclosed a potential conflict of interest involving Shea, the director of Signals Intelligence. Called SIGINT in espionage jargon, it refers to all electronic eavesdropping and interception, including the controversial domestic surveillance program that collects information about Americans' phone use.
As BuzzFeed News reported, there's a private SIGINT consulting and contracting business based at Shea's home in that quiet neighborhood. Shea's husband, a business executive in the small but profitable SIGINT industry, is the resident agent for the firm, Telic Networks.
In addition, James Shea also works for a major SIGINT contracting firm, DRS Signal Solutions Inc., which appears to do SIGINT business with the NSA.
DRS declined to comment, and the NSA declined to answer questions related to the Sheas, Telic Networks, or DRS.
Now there's a new wrinkle, which the NSA has also declined to discuss: Yet another company, apparently focused on the office and electronics business, is based at the Shea residence on that well-tended lot.
This company is called Oplnet LLC.
Teresa Shea, who has been at the NSA since 1984, is the company's resident agent. The company's articles of organization, signed by Teresa Shea, show that the firm was established in 1999 primarily ''to buy, sell, rent and lease office and electronic equipment and related goods and services.'' An attorney who also signed the document, Alan Engel, said he couldn't comment on client matters.
BuzzFeed News found no evidence that the firm has done business with the federal government, and it is unclear what electronics or office business the firm deals in. The firm is listed as active at the Maryland Department of Assessment and Taxation. One document on file at the Federal Aviation Administration lists Teresa Shea as the ''sole member'' of the LLC.
Records show Oplnet does own a six-seat airplane, as well a condominium property with an assessed value of $275,000 in the resort town of Hilton Head, South Carolina.
This summer the NSA turned down a Freedom of Information Act request for Shea's public financial disclosure form. The agency said that, unlike every other federal agency, it could withhold the disclosure because of a sweeping 1959 law that allows it to keep almost everything secret.
Financial disclosure forms are central to public monitoring of ethics and potential conflicts of interests by federal officials. Without that form, journalists or concerned citizens must comb through corporate incorporations, property records, UCC filings, and court records to learn about an official's financial interests outside of office. Often, these documents are not online and are in offices scattered across different states.
This year, the NSA was sued by Vice News journalist Jason Leopold after it withheld the financial disclosure records of Gen. Keith Alexander, who retired in March as director of the NSA. Ultimately, the agency released the records to Leopold.
This week, the NSA told Buzzfeed News it would ''process'' a formal request for Shea's financial disclosures forms, ''expeditiously.'' If the NSA releases those forms, they might reveal more about the business interests of her and her husband.
The NSA has been under fire recently, in part because of the controversial domestic surveillance program run by Teresa Shea's office. Using ''bulk metadata analysis,'' the program collects data on the phone calls of virtually all Americans, including the phone numbers dialed and the length of time of every phone call. The metadata program does not routinely record actual conversations, but much can be learned by knowing when and with whom a person communicates. Some of the details of that program were disclosed by Edward Snowden, the former agency contractor.
Teresa Shea, as head of SIGINT, has defended the program in declarations in two federal court cases.
The timeline of Shea's career at the NSA, and her husband's path in the SIGINT business, shows that the two have been successful in both tracks.
In 1984, according to Teresa Shea's bio (which is posted at the website of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association), she joined the NSA as an engineer working in SIGINT issues.
Her husband has been involved in SIGINT as a private contractor and engineer since at least 1990, when he set up a company called Sigtek Inc., which would get hundreds of thousands of dollars in contracts with the federal government, according to a federal contracting database. On his LinkedIn page, James Shea says the company's key markets included ''Defense SIGINT.''
In 1999 Teresa Shea, still at the NSA, herself registered Oplnet, with its ''office and electronics'' focus.
Then, the next year, James Shea's Sigtek was sold to a British firm, in a deal reportedly worth $20 million. Shea remained at the new firm, which was called Filtronic Sigtek, as president.
In 2002, Teresa Shea's firm acquired a 1972 Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft, according to paperwork. It is unclear what the aircraft is used for. Over the years, according to data from Flightaware, a flight tracking company, the plane was flown to various spots on the eastern seaboard including Norfolk, Virginia; Flagler County, Florida; and Hilton Head, South Carolina, where the company's condominium is located. The plane flies several times a month. In 2014, records show 28 flights.
FAA records show that James Shea has a pilot's license. The same records show no such license for Teresa Shea.
It was in 2007 that James Shea set up Telic Networks, which specializes in SIGINT, according to its website, and which was based at the Shea residence.
During the last decade, Teresa Shea rose rapidly at the NSA. She was the head of Tailored Access Operations, which generally included hacking operations aimed at special lines of communications, and was part of the SIGINT directorate.
In 2010, Teresa Shea was appointed the director of all SIGINT at the NSA, after a period working in London. The same year, James Shea became vice president at a major SIGINT contracting firm, DRS Signal Solutions, a subsidiary of DRS Technologies.
As BuzzFeed reported in its first story on the Sheas, neither the NSA nor DRS will comment on whether the company has contracts with Teresa Shea's directorate.
The NSA isn't required to disclose its contracts. But there is evidence DRS has, at a minimum, been trying to get a SIGINT contract at the NSA: It's recruiting SIGINT experts for jobs at Fort Meade, Maryland, the headquarters of the NSA.
Asked if there was a conflict of interest, DRS spokesman Michael Mount said ''I understand your story, and we'll still decline to comment.'' He said that when responding to BuzzFeed News about questions concerning James Shea, the company has coordinated with the NSA.
The NSA did not answer specific written questions about any of these issues, instead emailing a general statement to BuzzFeed News saying that ''the agency takes Federal ethics laws quite seriously'' and that it takes steps to identify and deal with any potential or actual conflicts of interest.
Matthew Aid, who has written a book about the NSA, The Secret Sentry, said it would be difficult to understand why Oplnet, this second home-based business, was set up by Ms. Shea, without knowing more.
But he adds that the fact that Shea's husband works for a SIGINT contractor, and has a SIGINT related company at the couple's home, is confounding.
''From a purely financial point of view, there's so much potential of conflict of interest.''
He said he's perplexed that the NSA won't answer questions about the issue.
''The fact that the NSA will not respond to your request raises in my mind a host of questions. If there was nothing there, they could have come back to you and said, 'She'd been diligent. She's in compliance.' Then there's no story. But they've said nothing. That to me is what could potential signal some problems.''
Aram Roston can be reached ataram.roston@buzzfeed.comand his pgp fingerprint is C21A 2C8F 128D 81D5 766D 227C FC9B C4E1 1546 9FDC
Chiner$
US, China Vow to Manage Rifts Ahead of Obama Visit - ABC News
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:18
The U.S. and China pledged Saturday to overcome mistrust, manage their differences and cooperate on key issues like combatting terrorism and the spread of the Ebola virus as President Barack Obama prepares to travel to the Chinese capital next month.
Meeting in Boston, Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi said the relationship between the two countries is mature enough to discuss disagreements while building on areas of shared interest.
"There are many issues that China and the United States are cooperating on, even as we have some differences that we try to manage effectively," Kerry told reporters as he began a second day of talks with Yang.
Yang, noting that Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping had made improved relations a priority, agreed.
"We believe that we should continue to work together to deepen our mutual trust and to put our efforts to major areas of cooperation while, on the basis of mutual respect, we can properly handle many kinds of difference between us," he said.
Washington and Beijing have recently clashed over matters including territorial disputes between China and its neighbors in the South China Sea, pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, alleged Chinese cyber spying and human rights.
A senior State Department involved in the meetings said those issues were discussed in a noncombative but direct and candid way in which Kerry believed Yang had given him a "full and careful hearing." The official said any progress in those areas would likely be incremental. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the diplomatic exchange by name.
Kerry noted that the two countries are working together on efforts to rein in nuclear programs in Iran and North Korea and have a common goal in curbing Islamist extremism, climate change and Ebola.
China is among several countries the Obama administration has implored to step up efforts to fight the Ebola virus by contributing more to the international campaign to stop its spread from the source in West Africa.
Kerry is hosting Yang in his hometown for two days of discussions ahead of Obama's trip to Beijing for a summit of Asia-Pacific leaders in November. On Friday, Kerry opened his home in Boston's tony Beacon Hill neighborhood to Yang for a dinner. Kerry and Yang finished their talks with a tour of the Adams' family home in nearby Quincy, where the second and sixth presidents of the United States, John and John Quincy Adams, lived.
The senior State Department official said the informal nature of the discussions allowed for a more robust discussion than the formally structured dialogue that the sides normally have.
The meetings follow talks in Washington earlier this month between Kerry and China's foreign minister during which they aired differences over Hong Kong.
After his meetings with Yang on Saturday, Kerry will travel to Indonesia for the inauguration on Monday of its new president, Joko Widodo, who won a July election.
On Tuesday, Kerry will go to Berlin to meet with Germany's foreign minister before returning to Washington.
Umberella Revolution
Boots on the ground sees litle evidence
I arrived in Hong Kong at Monday, and of course was shitless scared to be teargased by brutal chines policemen, since I arrived I walked all of Kowloon, and finally yesterday I went to central, I was curious about the big movement .
first of all, it took me hours to find the little place of a street where the protesters are, except there is nobody. a few tents, some people sleeping, I saw 2 policemen playing candy crush, and a lot of curious tourists with slave phones.
this protest is all bullshit, nothing is really going on, nobody cares.
hong kong was never free, the British gave them no rights, and now they have one of the best standards in the world, everybody I asked told me there is nothing going on, some even didn't know protest are supposed to exist .
still gonna be here some days, maybe I find more freedom fighters in a brothel, sending you pictures of protest site.
Agenda 21
Satellite Data Shows U.S. Methane 'Hot Spot' Bigger than Expected | NASA
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 18:44
Satellite Data Shows U.S. Methane 'Hot Spot' Bigger than Expected
[image-50]
One small ''hot spot'' in the U.S. Southwest is responsible for producing the largest concentration of the greenhouse gas methane seen over the United States '' more than triple the standard ground-based estimate -- according to a new study of satellite data by scientists at NASA and the University of Michigan.
Methane is very efficient at trapping heat in the atmosphere and, like carbon dioxide, it contributes to global warming. The hot spot, near the Four Corners intersection of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah, covers only about 2,500 square miles (6,500 square kilometers), or half the size of Connecticut.
In each of the seven years studied from 2003-2009, the area released about 0.59 million metric tons of methane into the atmosphere. This is almost 3.5 times the estimate for the same area in the European Union's widely used Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research.
In the study published online today in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, researchers used observations made by the European Space Agency's Scanning Imaging Absorption Spectrometer for Atmospheric Chartography (SCIAMACHY) instrument. SCIAMACHY measured greenhouse gases from 2002 to 2012. The atmospheric hot spot persisted throughout the study period. A ground station in the Total Carbon Column Observing Network, operated by the Department of Energy's Los Alamos National Laboratory, provided independent validation of the measurement.
To calculate the emissions rate that would be required to produce the observed concentration of methane in the air, the authors performed high-resolution regional simulations using a chemical transport model, which simulates how weather moves and changes airborne chemical compounds.
Research scientist Christian Frankenberg of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, first noticed the Four Corners signal years ago in SCIAMACHY data.
"We didn't focus on it because we weren't sure if it was a true signal or an instrument error," Frankenberg said.
The study's lead author, Eric Kort of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, noted the study period predates the widespread use of hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, near the hot spot. This indicates the methane emissions should not be attributed to fracking but instead to leaks in natural gas production and processing equipment in New Mexico's San Juan Basin, which is the most active coalbed methane production area in the country.
Natural gas is 95-98 percent methane. Methane is colorless and odorless, making leaks hard to detect without scientific instruments.
"The results are indicative that emissions from established fossil fuel harvesting techniques are greater than inventoried," Kort said. "There's been so much attention on high-volume hydraulic fracturing, but we need to consider the industry as a whole."
Coalbed methane is gas that lines pores and cracks within coal. In underground coal mines, it is a deadly hazard that causes fatal explosions almost every year as it seeps out of the rock. After the U.S. energy crisis of the 1970s, techniques were invented to extract the methane from the coal and use it for fuel. By 2012, coalbed methane supplied about 8 percent of all natural gas in the United States.
Frankenberg noted that the study demonstrates the unique role space-based measurements can play in monitoring greenhouse gases.
"Satellite data cannot be as accurate as ground-based estimates, but from space, there are no hiding places," Frankenberg said.
In March 2014 the Obama Administration announced a strategy to reduce methane emissions under its Climate Action Plan. The strategy includes improving the measurement and monitoring of methane emissions and assessing current methane emissions data.
NASA monitors Earth's vital signs from land, air and space with a fleet of satellites and airborne and ground-based observation campaigns. NASA develops new ways to observe and study Earth's interconnected natural systems with long-term data records and computer analysis tools to better see how our planet is changing. The agency shares this unique knowledge with the global community and works with institutions in the United States and around the world that contribute to understanding and protecting our home planet.
For more about NASA's Earth science activities this year, visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/earthrightnow
-end-
The Four Corners area (red) is the major U.S. hot spot for methane emissions in this map showing how much emissions varied from average background concentrations from 2003-2009 (dark colors are lower than average; lighter colors are higher).
Image Credit:
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Michigan
Image Token:
[image-50]
Climate Partners | The Climate Institute
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 02:18
A select group of businesses from sectors such as finance, energy, infrastructure, transport and communications have beenour Climate Partners since 2010.
These businesses both input into our ongoing work and partner with us on new work.
Find out more about becoming a partner, or see examples of recent work we gave done with our Climate Partners in the Business Support section.
Obama Nation
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Armageddon 2.0
NYTimes: U.S. Regulators Approve Eased Mortgage Lending Rules
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
White House Doctors Transcript of Obama Remarks | The Blog on Obama: White House Dossier
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 20:31
Updated 1:33 pm ETUpdated 11:14 am ET.
The White House Monday left a potentially embarassing phrase out of the official transcript of the president's remarks, altering what is supposed to be a verbatim rendition and, unless it was a mistake, effectively lying to the American people.
The odds, of course, of something harmful being the one thing left accidentally on the cutting room floor or unheard by the stenographer would seem rather low.
According to the White House pool report by Politico's Jennifer Epstein:
The White House's transcript of tonight's DNC fundraiser omits the president's reference to unpaid bills being stacked up on his desk at home in Chicago. I included a partial quote in the pool report earlier, but in the interest of transparency, especially since this was a print pool only event, I'm sharing the full quote, as I transcribed and checked just now, and as it was in the transcript. Thanks to AP's Josh Lederman for pointing out the discrepancy
The quote:
''One of the nice things about being home is actually that it's a little bit like a time capsule. Because Michelle and I and the kids, we left so quickly that there's still junk on my desk, including some unpaid bills (laughter) '' I think eventually they got paid '-- but they're sort of stacked up. And messages, newspapers and all kinds of stuff.''
In the transcript, the quote leaves out the reference to unpaid but probably eventually paid bills: ''there's still junk on my desk, including some '-- newspapers and all kinds of stuff.'‹''
The Bush people also tried altering a transcript and were caught, but that was early in the administration, and they learned their lesson and stuck to exact transcriptions from then on. Given Bush's challenges with regard to verbal expression in public, it couldn't have been an easy thing.
Obama's propagandists should know by now not to produce a false transcript.
The omission was included in the transcript that was emailed out to reporters. A copy has not yet appeared on the White House website. We'll see what it looks like.
UPDATE: THE PLOT THICKENS: The White House is claiming the stenographer did not hear the omitted phrase. It released a new transcript this morning with ''(inaudible)'' inserted where the missing phrase should be. Somehow, it wasn't inaudible to the White House pool reporters, who picked up on the discrepancy between what was said and what was in the transcript.
UPDATE 2: White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest this afternoon said the recording equipment used for the event malfunctioned. Earnest specifically denied that the phrase was intentionally left out. I'd like to hear the recording.
Tagged as: Obama, scandals
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Report: Secret Service Asked Metro Cops to Fake A Warrant | Pith in the Wind | Nashville Scene
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:18
Law and Order Report: Secret Service Asked Metro Cops to Fake A WarrantPosted By Steven Hale on Wed, Oct 15, 2014 at 10:30 AMIn a letter to members of a congressional oversight committee, Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson said local agents of the U.S. Secret Service asked his officers to fake a warrant last year, News Channel 5 reports.
Phil Williams has the details:
In the Nashville case, a Secret Service agent made a frantic call for backup to Nashville police after he and another agent went to the home of a Nashville man, investigating threatening comments on Facebook about the President. The man who posted them had refused to let the agents into his house.
"He shoved the door in our face and went around the corner. Looks like, we're not sure if he ... possibly he had a gun in his hands," the agent told a 911 operator.
In a letter that he first sent to Secret Service headquarters, the Nashville police chief recounted what happened.
"The resident refused to come outside and shouted back, 'Show me your warrant,'" Anderson wrote.
So "one of the agents then asked a [police] sergeant to 'wave a piece of paper' in an apparent effort to dupe the resident into thinking that they indeed had a warrant."
Secret Service Director Julia Pierson resigned earlier this month amidst multiple reports of security lapses by the agency charged with protecting the president.
Tags: Secret Service, Steve Anderson, Metro Police, faked warrant
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bank$ters
Mark Carney launches investigation after real-time payment system crash delays house purchases - Telegraph
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 20:45
At 6am, part of the Bank's overarching Real Time Gross Settlement payment system (RTGS), which processes transactions between banks, had been taken offline, leading in turn to the failure of the Clearing House Automated Payments System (CHAPS), responsible for high-value payments and housing deals.
The two systems play a crucial role in the UK payments structure, settling large deals and time-sensitive transactions such as house purchases, between banks. After RTGS was taken down - following an update that it was feared would cause it to malfunction once live - operations were not resumed until around 4pm.
In a statement on Monday night, the Bank said: "All 142,759 payments submitted to RTGS today [Monday] before the extended deadline have now been processed. The Bank has put in place extra steps to monitor the system at the start of the day tomorrow [Tuesday] when RTGS will open at 6am as usual. The Bank apologises for any problems caused by the delays to the settlement of payments today and has launched a thorough, independent review of the incident."
The failure was the longest ever suffered by RTGS, which was set up in 1996 as part of efforts to minimise the risk of banks receiving late payments. It is believed to be the biggest outage in the three decades since CHAPS was set up in 1984.
As a result, the system was made to stay open until 8pm to process the thousands of delayed transactions. During the day, the biggest and most systemically-important payments were manually processed, while other parts of the UK payments infrastructure, such as cashpoints and direct debits, were unaffected.
Jonathan Harris, director of mortgage brokers Anderson Harris, warned that the outage threatened to be ''hugely inconvenient'' for the estimated 2,450 households expected to complete house purchases on Monday.
Banks and solicitors scrambled to mitigate the effect of the estimated £600m of house payments due to be made, occasionally using alternative payment methods or postponing transactions. Most were confident that all scheduled deals would be completed by the end of the day. However, several house-buyers reported their moves being disrupted by the hold-up, and the episode left the Bank red-faced.
Andrew Tyrie, the chairman of the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee which supervises the Bank of England, welcomed the investigation in a letter to Mr Carney on Monday night.
''The appointment of an independent reviewer to get to the bottom of such a serious episode as this is appropriate,'' he wrote. ''The Treasury Committee may want to meet the independent reviewer when he or she has been identified.''
Earlier, Mr Tyrie had urged the Bank to find out what had caused the problems.
''A crucial part of the UK's financial infrastructure failed for several hours today,'' he said.
''The whole economy depends on a reliable payment system. We need to have confidence that the cause has been found and addressed.''
House purchases account for just a small part of the £277bn processed by CHAPS daily. It makes up roughly a third of all electronic payments made in the UK on any given day.
''The Bank of England has identified a technical issue related to some routine maintenance of the RTGS payment system and has paused settlement while we resolve it,'' the Bank announced yesterday morning '' five hours after it had detected the fault and informed banks.
Bank of England
Another five hours later, it announced that RTGS was back online, and that the four-hour extension would give it a strong chance of fulfilling all orders.
CHAPS, which is run independently from the Bank, said that it expected that the backlog would not run into Tuesday.
''The Bank of England's RTGS system is now processing payments again following a resolution of the technical issue experienced earlier today [Monday],'' a spokesman said.
''As such, CHAPS is now processing the backlog of payments and is confident that all payments submitted today [Monday] will be processed today.
"Following an extension to the CHAPS processing day, just under 143,000 payments were settled - in line with the normal average day's volumes.
"CHAPS would like to apologise for any delays any customers may have experienced with their payments and would ask that anyone impacted by this contact their bank or building society for assistance."
In total, transactions were delayed for 10 hours, far longer than the previously biggest outage in 2007, which lasted six hours and meant trading was extended by 45 minutes.
Real News
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Leaked: Bin Laden not buried at sea, body moved on CIA plane to US '-- RT News
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 03:45
Representing East Boston, living in the 206... just trying to be part of the interconnected mycelium network. OG's Bitcoin Wallet-DonateOccupy NYC LivestreamWiki MK UltraWiki Operation NorthwoodsOG TwitterNo Agenda - w/ Adem Curry & John C. DvorakMy Ride, Surly - Long Haul TruckerMy road bike
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Paris sculpture that resembles sex toy leaves citizens 'humiliated' | Daily Mail Online
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 19:01
American artist's sculpture in Parisian square has raised eyebrows Some think 'Tree' resembles a certain type of sex toyTwitter users say the controversial work has made capital a laughing stockBy Sam Webb for MailOnline
Published: 13:56 EST, 16 October 2014 | Updated: 03:57 EST, 17 October 2014
15kshares
330
Viewcomments
Looming above the Place Vendome in Paris is a seemingly innocuous 24ft tall green inflatable Christmas tree, created by American artist Paul McCarthy.
But the artwork, simple entitled 'Tree', has raised eyebrows in the French capital because of its uncanny resemblance to a certain type of sex toy.
McCarthy, an enfant terrible of the art world, created the suggestive sculpture for a contemporary art fair - but some Parisians are not happy about it and think city authorities should have 'pulled the plug' on the project.
Scroll down for video
Look, it's a tree, all right? An enormous sculpture in Place Vendome in Paris has caused consternation for its resemblance to a certain type of sex toy
French kiss: Some social media users say the suggestive sculpture has 'humiliated' Paris
French Spring, a French far-right group opposed to gay marriage - posted a picture of the controversial inflatable on Twitter, adding: 'Place Vendome disfigured! Paris humiliated!'
It added: 'This is where your tax dollars are going!'
Artist's sculpture in Parisian square has raised eyebrows
'Standing at 24.4 metres tall Place Vendome Tree by Paul McCarthy is a thought sculpture specifically for this place in relation to the exhibition Chocolate Factory presented at the Monnaie de Paris, the first major solo exhibition of the artist in the city,' says the French art site Artistik Rezo.
The sculpture is accompanied by a gallery where the visitor is welcomed by a forest of similarly suspiciously-shaped Christmas trees, culminating in a room full of chocolate figurines, including some of Santa holding - perhaps unsurprisingly - the same sexually suggestive symbol.
Provocateur: Artist Paul McCarthy walks in front of 'Tree', his monumental artwork at Place Vendome
A very merry Christmas: Paul McCarthy's completely innocent sculpture showing Santa holding a tree. Honest
McCarthy is no stranger to controversy and is known for artworks corrupting innocent symbols of youth, from Disney to Hollywood.
At a 2011 exhibition in London he displayed an identical pair of clay anamatronic sculptures of former president George W Bush having sex with pigs.
A description of the Paris exhibition on the Flashart website states: 'Aside from their looming proportions, these familiar objects appear bizarrely out of place in the polished surrounds of the historical building.
'This surprising juxtaposition draws us into the magic of Hollywood and the dark side of the American dream.'
Share or comment on this article
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Three Chinese men arrested in Japan for buying too many diapers | RocketNews24
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:09
In recent years a scourge has gripped Japan, and it is people buying too many disposable diapers at once '' the Merries brand in particular. For this heinous behavior, three Chinese men were arrested by the Hyogo Prefectural Police on 15 October and are expected to be deported back to their country.
The three men were said to have entered Japan through their culinary licenses. However, their alleged true intent was to buy up as many diapers as possible and send them back to buyers in China, thus violating their visas.
According to police, in a five-day span the men bought 990 packs of disposable diapers produced by Nippon Paper Industries from 267 stores with a view to sending them back to their homeland.
'–¼ ''Since this morning Chinese people have been hording Merries! No joke ½ž(£¼£; @Akachanhonpo in Nara City''
Despite past boycotts of Japanese products in China, political posturing always takes a back seat to a parent's love for their child. As such Chinese parents have been demanding Japanese-made diapers in recent years. Grumblings from the Japanese public over sold-out shops from binge buyers have been occurring for some time now.
'–¼ ''Oh! Merries are sold out!!''
In particular, the Merries brand by Kao has earned a reputation among Chinese parents as ''the iPhone of diapers'' and is especially coveted. Interestingly enough, the Merries brand is also produced in China, but parents there don't trust the diapers, especially with the proclivity of knock-offs to emerge for any popular brand no matter what it may be.
As a result packs are sometimes flying off the shelves faster than they can be stocked, and are then sold in China at about a 50% increase in price. It's an awful situation that needs'...
Hey wait a minute'... Chinese people wanting to buy Japanese diapers in large quantities is a good thing isn't it? I mean, aw shucks, I guess Kao is just going to have to produce and sell more units or try to get some of that juicy mark up in China themselves thanks to the killer brand recognition they have there.
'–¼ ''In the home center parking lot, two Chinese people struggling to get as many Merries as they can. If one of them came alone they could have packed the front seat too'... How much is all this?''
Even if they don't, it's still a nice win for Japan-produced goods and the jobs that come along with it, especially as the Japanese economy has been just kind of floating around the surface of the toilet bowl.
Also, being a hit in the most populated country in the world means some sweet revenue from sales tax for those visiting and making huge purchases. At least they would but Abenomics kind of screwed the pooch on that by recently exempting sales tax for foreign shoppers on large purchases. Well, at least Chinese people staying in Japan on visas will have to pay the taxes'... oh I forgot, they get arrested and deported instead.
Source: Livedoor News (Japanese)Top Image: AmazonVideo: YouTube '' FNNnewsCH
'–¼ An FNN report on the arrests
Like this:LikeLoading...
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
NA-Tech
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Apple's Mac computers can automatically collect your location information - The Washington Post
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 12:36
This story has been updated to reflect comment from Apple.
Apple has begun automatically collecting the locations of users and the queries they type when searching for files with the newest Mac operating system, a function that has provoked backlash for a company that portrays itself as a leader on privacy.
The function is part of Spotlight search, which was updated with last week's launch of new Mac computers and Apple's latest operating system, Yosemite OS X, which also is available for download to owners of older machines. Once Yosemite is installed, users searching for files '' even on their own hard drives -- have their locations, unique identifying codes and search terms automatically sent to the company, keystroke by keystroke. The same is true for devices using Apple's latest mobile operating system, iOS 8.
A pop-up window discloses the change, saying collecting the data helps provide results ''more relevant to you'' as Spotlight also looks beyond individual computers to gather information across the Internet, much like popular search engines such as Google already do. But privacy advocates worry that users won't understand what information is collected and how to stop the transmission of data to Apple, which happens by default.
The change is the latest by a major technology company hoping to more closely integrate individual devices with remote cloud services. Yet the privacy consequences could be significant because while devices '' such as computers, smartphones and music players '' are increasingly well protected with encryption and other defenses, remote cloud services have proven more vulnerable to outside attack, as happened when hackers extracted the intimate photos of Hollywood celebrities this summer from accounts on Apple's iCloud service.
''We are absolutely committed to protecting our users' privacy and have built privacy right into our products,'' Apple said in a statement Monday night. It said the company had worked to ''minimize the amount of information sent to Apple'' and had implemented several protections to keep user information private.
The reaction to the changes on Spotlight was harsh on Twitter, with some critics saying the change had undermined Apple's increasingly vocal position on user privacy as it released new forms of encryption for its popular mobile devices, such as the iPhone, that made it difficult even for police to access when they have search warrants.
One Twitter user, under the name Neal Wise, spoke of Apple's ''newly found posturing about protecting user privacy,'' then asked, ''What's Apple doing with this data?''
Landon J. Fuller, chief executive of software company Plausible Labs, said in an e-mail, ''If we look at Yosemite, we see that Apple collects extremely detailed metrics about their customers' web and Spotlight searches. They may be using those metrics to explore improvements to their own search technology instead of to sell to 3rd-party advertisers, but they're still collecting them.''
Fuller also created a Web site, fix-macosx.com, detailing how to shut off Apple's data collection.
Apple officials said Monday that the data collection is intended only to improve the quality of searches conducted through Spotlight, a standard feature on both Mac computers and Apple's mobile devices, such as the iPhone and iPad. The user identification number rotates after 15 minutes to a new identifier, they said, and the location and search query information is not used to create profiles of users or to deliver targeted advertising. Apple has sought to distinguish itself in recent months from competitors, such as Google and Facebook, that rely on user data collection to generate advertising and profits.
Testing by The Washington Post found that the locations revealed in Spotlight searches can be strikingly precise, placing a user within a particular building in Washington, D.C., even though the disclosure box on Spotlight refers to collecting ''your approximate location."
Apple officials said that Spotlight seeks to obscure exact locations but said that the information typically is more precise in dense areas and less so in sparse ones. Company officials also said they plan to disable a function in which Spotlight begins transmitting a user's location as soon as the function is activated; soon, the transmission will happen only once a queried has been typed.
Apple traditionally also has notified users when their location information is being used, by displaying a small arrow in the menu bar. But the company has chosen to not alert users when the operating system itself transmits their locations, as Spotlight now does. Apple officials said that too many notifications could de-sensitize users.
In addition to sharing information with Apple, Spotlight also can download relevant Web pages and Wikipedia articles about the topics covered by a search query, revealing potentially sensitive information about the user's activities to other Web sites as well. Apple officials said that query and location information is shared only with Bing, a search engine provided by Microsoft, and that it is contractually prohibited from using that information for advertising or developing user profiles.
Craig Timberg is a national technology reporter for The Post.
SECTION: {section=business/technology, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
SECTION: {section=business/technology, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=2, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Michael Wolff on HBO, CBS Streaming: TV Is Disrupting the Internet
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 15:54
This story first appeared in the Oct. 31 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
The solipsism of the tech community sees the CBS and HBO migrations to stand-alone streaming services as a satisfying disruption of the TV business. But that's a striking inversion of what's actually happening: TV is disrupting the Internet.
A funny thing happened during the Internet's seemingly epochal displacement of mainstream media. While digital media was becoming overwhelmingly ad-supported '-- a mass-media model reminiscent of the three-network era '-- television gained a subscription revenue stream. Paid television '-- that is, cable subscriptions '-- became the most powerful growth driver in the media world, producing a new kind of high-value, culture-shaping programming.
Read more HBO to Launch Stand-Alone Online Service in U.S. in 2015
Meanwhile, digital media, from Yahoo to BuzzFeed to the websites and apps of magazines and newspapers '-- and including even Google and Facebook '-- found itself overwhelmingly reliant on advertising income. Because of the glut of space, new automated ways of buying and reaching audiences in digital venues and persistent complaints about the caliber of digital attention, ad rates largely have continued to sink '-- meaning, in a terrible cycle, content must be cheaper and must grow broader in an ever-dumbed-down effort to reach a larger and larger audience, for which advertisers pay less and less. This downward trend now is moving almost every significant Internet platform and media site into the video business, with its higher ad rates and opportunities for user fees.
The digital worldview holds that seamless streaming platforms challenge television's basic business model and its relationship with its viewers '-- and digital is the way to cut the cable cord. Recent announcements by CBS and HBO about their streaming plans are old media's capitulation to the Netflix model and an acknowledgement that television's riches are coming to digital.
Yet it is the Netflix model that breaks from web formats and reverts to traditional premium TV. It charges subscription fees; it licenses content (largely TV content); and now it makes, a la HBO, highly regarded programming using top talent. Other than residing on the web or as an app, Netflix actually rejects the conventions of digital media. It is not user-generated; it is not social; it is not bite size; it is not free. And now its approach is the one most other digital companies with big media ambitions '-- Google, Amazon, Yahoo '-- are looking to pursue: that is, to become like television.
Read more Yahoo Passes on 'Enlisted' Revival
But, they say, it's a new distribution paradigm! IP delivery breaks the cable stronghold! The great unbundling '-- that Internet grail of consumer choice '-- is undermining the control of traditional distributors and producers!
Or is it that digital joins broadcast and cable as a third way the TV industry can deliver its product, actually strengthening it? That, in fact, the digital revolution is a digression, and television '-- the real video revolution that began in the 1950s '-- continues on.
Television, in the digital view, will go the way of music and print, low-value fuel for the high-value digital engine. But television always has been a different sort of media product, never one thing (broadcast, cable, syndicated, first-run, rerun, VHS, DVD, DVR, etc.) but ever transforming, protean. It's currency in the hands of savvy traders: You want my hit show, you give me this distribution advantage; you want my distribution, you give me your hit show. The more platforms, the more leverage.
Indeed, traditional television's establishment of streaming outlets is not merely an effort to compete with native digital TV platforms but to deliver a warning to satellite and cable distributors '-- mostly Comcast '-- that content producers have another way to weight the scales in negotiations for cable fees. Of course, at the same time, in this finely balanced ecosystem, Comcast, controlling the largest share of broadband delivery, also benefits from the growth of digital TV platforms. And with a two-tier net-neutrality rule coming '-- that is, a faster and slower speed '-- Comcast will have another thumb to put on its side of the scale. (Likewise, traditional TV powers likely have greater leverage than their digital competitors to negotiate for more speed.)
Read more CBS' Leslie Moonves: Wall Street Hero, "Pushover" at Home, Future Ambassador?
It's a tough guy's world. CBS' Leslie Moonves might be the totem of the old-media establishment, preserved in amber, all the more galling for not understanding '-- or certainly not seeming to care about '-- his throwback status. And yet, in 20 years of competition from digital media, he is more powerful (and more ebullient) than ever '-- and with sharper and more adroit elbows. Both Moonves and HBO's Richard Plepler have announced their new moves into streaming with strikingly few details '-- but, notably, with just enough to hammer Netflix's stock. If Netflix wants to inflate production fees with me-too original shows and raise the price of licensing deals, well, the empire strikes back. It's television as usual: If I bleed, you do too.
In the digital imagination, the key disruption is to create a wide menu of on-demand choices, undermining the media establishment's power to make the consumer buy dross as well as gold. Netflix, for instance, has to license lots of junk in order to get the good stuff. And yet, digital platforms are now, to their certain bewilderment, pulled ever more into show business reality. Unlike digital media, television is not a flattened, long-tail world. It's about the hits. Those unique moments of creative synchronicity that give you amazing power '-- and the wherewithal to bundle. And, indeed, that's the game digital media more and more wants to play. To get hits, you need a way to finance duds, without which you can't have hits. That's TV, as the Yahoos and Xboxes and Amazons are learning (thereby buoying the coffers of traditional Hollywood producers of the hits and duds).
The digital world believes, too, that it gains key advantages on its own turf. But television, curiously, always has been very good at competing with itself. The archetype of the TV executive as rapacious and ever-calculating '-- a truly heartless suit '-- probably is an accurate one, meaning he or she negotiates well. TV product, available in myriad ways and through often competing distributors, has remained both carefully controlled and artfully profitable '-- now, with subscription and advertising revenue, more than ever. Once we believed television would be diminished in a fractured world; in fact, it turns out television's power grows as it accommodates greater and more varied demand.
See more HBO's New Late-Night Host John Oliver Reveals His 5 Comedic Influences (Photos)
Assume HBO bought Netflix for $30 billion. What would it own? A streaming site that competes for its subscribers. By saving $30 billion and creating a stand-alone version of its HBO Go app, it essentially will have the same outcome: a streaming site that competes for its subscribers. But for every subscriber who shifts, it will make money at the Netflix rate of $8.99 a month (in many instances, more than it makes per subscriber from its cable deals). So it: a) hurts Netflix and all other digital competitors; b) does not hurt itself; c) establishes a new platform, potentially raising the share price of parent Time Warner; and d) has an empirical learning curve for how to grow across new platforms and extend its ubiquity. Ditto for CBS.
The only question: Why did it take them so long?
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Vote Dem
SOUTHERN STATES-Consumer Advisory: Vehicle Owners with Defective Airbags Urged to Take Immediate Action | National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 03:49
Wednesday, October 22, 2014Media-only contact: Karen Aldana, 202-366-9550, Public.Affairs@dot.gov (Note: Corrects vehicle list provided with advisories of Oct. 20-21)Vehicle owners can call our Safety Hotline: 1-888-327-4236WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration urges owners of certain Toyota, Honda, Mazda, BMW, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Subaru, Chrysler, Ford and General Motors vehicles to act immediately on recall notices to replace defective Takata airbags. Over seven million vehicles are involved in these recalls, which have occurred as far back as 18 months ago and as recently as Monday. The message comes with urgency, especially for owners of vehicles affected by regional recalls in the following areas: Florida, Puerto Rico, limited areas near the Gulf of Mexico in Texas, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, and Louisiana, as well as Guam, Saipan, American Samoa, Virgin Islands and Hawaii.
"Responding to these recalls, whether old or new, is essential to personal safety and it will help aid our ongoing investigation into Takata airbags and what appears to be a problem related to extended exposure to consistently high humidity and temperatures. However, we're leaving no stone unturned in our aggressive pursuit to track down the full geographic scope of this issue," said NHTSA Deputy Administrator David Friedman.
Consumers that are uncertain whether their vehicle is impacted by the Takata recalls, or any other recall, can contact their manufacturer's website to search, by their vehicle identification number (VIN) to confirm whether their individual vehicle has an open recall that needs to be addressed. Owners that have been contacted by their manufacturer should contact their dealer's service department and make arrangements for the repair. In addition, consumers can sign up for NHTSA recall alerts, which go out before recall letters are mailed by the manufacturers to the affected owners.
7.8 Million Affected U.S. Vehicles, by Manufacturer, Impacted by CY 2013 and 2014 Recalls Involving Takata AirbagsNote: The list below corrects the list that accompanied our October 20 advisory, which incorrectly included certain vehicles. The numbers cited for potentially affected vehicles below are subject to change and adjustment because there may be cases of vehicles being counted more than once. Owners should check their VIN periodically as manufacturers continue to add VINs to the database. Once owner recall notices are available, owners can retrieve a copy from SaferCar.gov, or will receive one by U.S. mail and are advised to carefully follow the enclosed instructions.
BMW: 627,615 total number of potentially affected vehicles2000 '' 2005 3 Series Sedan2000 '' 2006 3 Series Coupe2000 '' 2005 3 Series Sports Wagon2000 '' 2006 3 Series Convertible2001 '' 2006 M3 Coupe2001 '' 2006 M3 Convertible
Chrysler: 371,309 total number of potentially affected vehicles2003 '' 2008 Dodge Ram 15002005 '' 2008 Dodge Ram 25002006 '' 2008 Dodge Ram 35002006 '' 2008 Dodge Ram 45002008 '' Dodge Ram 55002005 '' 2008 Dodge Durango2005 '' 2008 Dodge Dakota2005 '' 2008 Chrysler 3002007 '' 2008 Chrysler Aspen
Ford: 58,669 total number of potentially affected vehicles2004 '' Ranger2005 '' 2006 GT2005 '' 2007 Mustang
General Motors: undetermined total number of potentially affected vehicles2003 '' 2005 Pontiac Vibe2005 '' Saab 9-2X
Honda: 5,051,364 total number of potentially affected vehicles2001 '' 2007 Honda Accord)2001 '' 2002 Honda Accord2001 '' 2005 Honda Civic2002 '' 2006 Honda CR-V2003 '' 2011 Honda Element2002 '' 2004 Honda Odyssey2003 '' 2007 Honda Pilot2006 '' Honda Ridgeline2003 '' 2006 Acura MDX2002 '' 2003 Acura TL/CL2005 '' Acura RL
Mazda: 64,872 total number of potentially affected vehicles2003 '' 2007 Mazda62006 '' 2007 MazdaSpeed62004 '' 2008 Mazda RX-82004 '' 2005 MPV2004 '' B-Series Truck
Mitsubishi: 11,985 total number of potentially affected vehicles2004 '' 2005 Lancer2006 '' 2007 Raider
Nissan: 694,626 total number of potentially affected vehicles2001 '' 2003 Nissan Maxima2001 '' 2004 Nissan Pathfinder2002 '' 2004 Nissan Sentra2001 '' 2004 Infiniti I30/I352002 '' 2003 Infiniti QX42003 '' 2005 Infiniti FX35/FX45
Subaru: 17,516 total number of potentially affected vehicles2003 '' 2005 Baja2003 '' 2005 Legacy2003 '' 2005 Outback2004 '' 2005 Impreza
Toyota: 877,000 total number of potentially affected vehicles2002 '' 2005 Lexus SC2002 '' 2005 Toyota Corolla2003 '' 2005 Toyota Corolla Matrix2002 '' 2005 Toyota Sequoia2003 '' 2005 Toyota Tundra
Stay connected with NHTSA via: Facebook.com/NHTSA | Twitter.com/NHTSAgov | YouTube.com/USDOTNHTSA | SaferCar.gov
VIDEO-CLIPS-DOCS
VIDEO-Al Sharpton On Canada Shooting: 'What's The Latest Tonight In Iowa?' - YouTube
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 13:48
VIDEO-The Chicken These Expert Food Tasters Are Reviewing Isn't Quite What They Think It Is | Video | TheBlaze.com
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:48
A pair of YouTube stars successfully tricked multiple self-proclaimed food experts at a Netherlands convention into lavishing praise on McDonald's menu items.
''What happens when you serve McDonald's food to some experts and pretend it's a new organic meal?'' the two individuals ask.
The YouTube stars traveled to one of the fast-food chain's nearby locations and ordered some of their iconic meals.
They then visited the food convention, serving the chicken nuggets on a platter built for an exquisite hors d'oeuvre.
Image source: YouTube
The experts, however, apparently couldn't distinguish the difference.
''It's nice and firm, has a good bite,'' one of the reviewers said, according to the YouTube subtitles.
''If it were with wine I'd say it's fine.''''Rolls around the tongue nicely,'' echoed another, ''If it were with wine I'd say it's fine.''
''I like it, it's pure,'' said yet another. ''It's just a pure, organic product and that makes it very tasty.''
'--
Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter
VIDEO-After an Islamic Veil Is Spotted on an Audience Member, Opera Cast Issues an Ultimatum That May Surprise You | TheBlaze.com
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:46
The first act of ''La Traviata'' had just concluded at the Opera Bastille in Paris when the deputy director got an ultimatum from the cast.
A female audience member sitting in the front row was wearing an Islamic face veil '-- and if she (or the veil) didn't take a hike, the cast wouldn't take the stage for the second act, the Telegraph reported.
''La Traviata'' at Opera Bastille (Image source: Opera house website)
France's public ban of the veil (niqab) was enacted in 2011 and upheld by the European Court of Human Rights earlier this year, the paper said.
So, with the law on his side and the prospect of the show not going on, opera deputy director Jean-Philippe Thiellay took action.
''It's never nice to ask someone to leave,'' he noted to the Telegraph. ''But there was a misunderstanding of the law and the lady either had to respect it or leave.''
During the intermission the woman '-- described as a tourist from a Gulf state, the Telegraph said '-- was told by an opera house attendant that she could stay if she removed her veil.
''He told her that in France there is a ban of this nature, asked her to either uncover her face or leave the room,'' Thiellay said to the Telegraph.
The woman and her husband left the room, the New York Times reported.
Once news broke Monday regarding the Oct. 3 incident, the Times reported that the French government would review its guidelines to help theaters, museums and other public places enforce the face veil ban.
Women wearing a face veil in public may be fined up to 150 euros (almost $190) and required to attend citizenship classes, the Telegraph said. Those forcing women to cover their faces may be fined up to 30,000 euros (almost $38,000) or twice that amount if the women are under 18, the paper added.
Elsa Ray, spokeswoman for the Collective Against Islamophobia in France, told the Times the incident smacked of ''vigilante justice.''
''This episode shows that people are using vigilante justice to enforce the law at a time when women in full veils are being physically attacked on the street,'' she told the Times. ''The woman and her husband paid dearly for those opera tickets, and this shows the atmosphere of hate in contemporary France.''
VIDEO-'This Is Crazy': Josh Earnest Refuses to Say if Plan for More Green Cards Is Related to Obama's Immigration Move | TheBlaze.com
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:44
White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Wednesday refused to admit that the government is stocking up on supplies needed to boost the production of green cards, in anticipation of President Barack Obama's executive action to give legal status to millions of illegal immigrants.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has recently ramped up its order of card stock needed to make green cards. Earlier this month, it ordered enough stock to make 34 million green cards over the next five years, more than double the number it would normally produce over that period.
Conservatives say the order for more paper is a clear sign the administration plans to hand out more green cards to illegal immigrants as part of Obama's immigration plan. But when pressed on whether this is the case, Earnest declined to answer, and tried to pass off the ordering of more supplies as a random order for ''green-colored paper.''
''There are decisions that are made by lots of agencies, including new ordering of specific colored sheets of paper,'' he said. ''You would have to ask the DHS about orders for green-colored paper that they've ordered.''
As CBS reporter Major Garrett pressed him to confirm the connection, Earnest laughed off the question several times, and at one point said, ''I mean, this is crazy.'' Earnest dodged the question again by saying the White House doesn't micro-manage each agency to the point of ordering supplies.
''I am really not trying to be clever,'' he said. ''I'm really trying to just be like as really straight-forward as I can, which is: the White House does not make specific direction to agencies about which supplies they should order.''
After Garrett pointed out that it's not crazy to assume plans for more green cards are related to Obama's pending immigration announcement, Earnest insisted that no decisions have been made yet.
''There are still decisions to be made about what that policy will entail, and when we're ready to announce that policy, we will announce it,'' he said. ''What I would caution you against doing is making assumptions about what will be in those announcements based on the procurement practices of the Department of Homeland Security.''
Obama was originally set to announce a major change to immigration policy at the end of the summer. But Earnest later admitted that such an announcement could have given Republicans ammunition against Democrats in the mid-term elections, and the White House said its plans would be delayed until after November 4.
VIDEO-Canada vraagt advies Wilders | Buitenland | Telegraaf.nl
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:39
Exclusieve artikelen van de Telegraaf redactie
do 23 okt 2014, 12:35
Canadese nieuwsuitzendingen staan bol over de schietpartijen van woensdag. Sun News had ook een item over islamitisch terrorisme en schakelde daarbij Geert Wilders in als expert op dit gebied.
"Dit is geen tijd om de zaken in politieke correctheid uit te gaan drukken. Als we dat doen dan verzuipen we', zo begint anchorman Michael Coren bij zijn introductie. "Geert Wilders van de PVV uit Nederland is de man die daarover kan meepraten". Coren maakt de kijkers ook nog even duidelijk dat Wilders Nederlandse beveiligers heeft moeten meenemen naar de studio om te kijken of alles ok(C) is. "Zo moet deze man leven omdat hij vrijuit praat over de islam".
Wilders zegt dat hij 'niet zozeer verbaasd is wat er in Ottowa gebeurde'. "Maar onze regeringen gaan niet goed om met de problemen rond jihadstrijders, het is onbegrijpelijk. Ik begrijp niet dat de Nederlandse regering, en Canada ook niet, de paspoorten van jihadstrijders afpakken en ze vastzetten. Het maakt onze straten - neem in dit voorbeeld de schietpartijen in Canada maandag en woensdag, onveilig. Of laat de jihadstrijders gaan en niet meer terugkomen. "
Wilders toont zich strijdbaar. "Ze hebben de oorlog aan ons verklaard. We moeten ze ook bevechten alsof het oorlog is. We moeten onze eigen mensen beschermen tegen terroristen."
Coren vraagt Wilders zelfs nog om advies. "Kunnen we in Canada iets leren van de ervaringen uit Nederland?" Wilders geeft Canada mee: "wees strenger en harder in immigratiepolitiek.'
(C) 1996-2014 TMG Landelijke Media B.V., Amsterdam.Alle rechten voorbehouden.e-mail: redactie-i@telegraaf.nlGebruiksvoorwaarden | Privacy | Cookies | Cookie-voorkeuren
VIDEO-Another man jumps White House fence, is apprehended on lawn by K-9 squad - The Washington Post
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 12:28
A man jumped the White House fence Wednesday night and was taken into custody after being bitten by a guard dog, officials said, just weeks after another fence jumper made it deep into the executive mansion amid a series of security failures.
Secret Service agents and K-9 units quickly apprehended the latest fence jumper, who authorities identified as Dominic Adesanya, 23, of Bel Air, Md. He was taken to a hospital with injuries from a dog bite, and charges against him were pending, authorities said.
Two of the Secret Service dogs '-- named Hurricane and Jordan '-- were taken to a veterinarian and treated for minor bruising they suffered during the incident, according to agency spokesman Edwin Donovan. ''Both K-9s were cleared for duty by the veterinarian,'' Donovan wrote in an e-mail.
Despite its quick ending, the struggle close to the executive mansion prompted a burst of activity from security personnel. Authorities shut down Lafayette Square, moving dozens of tourists to H Street NW, and the White House remained under lockdown for more than 90 minutes afterward. President Obama was in the building, but his precise whereabouts '-- and those of his family '-- were unclear.
Adesanya has been charged with two counts of assault on a police officer '-- a charge that stems from his attack on the dogs '-- along with one count of making threats and four counts of resisting and unlawful entry, Donovan added. All charges except for resisting and unlawful threats are felonies; Adesanya was unarmed at the time of his arrest.
A man was apprehended on Wednesday after jumping White House fence. Video shows the man kicking a dog while officials try to apprehend him. (YouTube.com/FOX 5 DC)
Adesanya was released from a local hospital and taken into custody, Donovan said. No court date was immediately set.
The incident was the latest in a string of security issues at the White House that have unsettled administration officials and led to the resignation of Secret Service Director Julia Pierson. On Sept. 19, a man scaled the fence and ran far into the executive mansion through an unlocked front door. Omar J. Gonzalez, 42, a U.S. Army veteran who has said he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, has pleaded not guilty to charges against him.
On Tuesday, a federal judge delayed Gonzalez's arraignment and ordered that he undergo a mental-health evaluation within 30 days.
The firestorm of criticism from that incident led to revelations about other recent Secret Service failures. Pierson resigned after being excoriated by House lawmakers, and investigations of the Sept. 19 incident are ongoing.
In Wednesday's incident, a man climbed the White House's north fence about 7:15 p.m. and was immediately taken into custody on the north lawn by Secret Service Uniformed Division K-9 teams and Uniformed Division Officers, said Donovan. The man was unarmed, and no shots were fired, Donovan said.
Donovan said he was unaware of any changes in the security posture around the White House on Wednesday night. It was unclear what changes in security have been made since the earlier fence-jumping.
Adesanya attended Stevenson University in Maryland in the past two years, concentrating on business administration and running track, according to his LinkedIn profile and other online records.
Family members could not be reached for comment Wednesday night, but Adesanya's father told Christian Schaffer of WMAR (Channel 2) in Baltimore that his son had wanted to talk to Obama about ''his feelings that everyone was out to get him,'' the reporter tweeted. The father, who was not identified in the tweet, said his son has been having psychological problems for more than a year and has been arrested at the White House before, although no details were available Wednesday night.
Philippe Melaku-Bello, a peace protester who said he regularly spends time near the White House, said he saw five to six officers with batons out, standing over a man on the ground about 40 feet west of the center of the building on its northern side. He said the man was not moving. Officers immediately started moving bystanders farther from the White House. While Melaku-Bello was moving away, he heard the barking of a dog, he said.
Andrew Meade was in front of the White House with his family after a day of visiting museums. He said his wife saw someone climb over the fence, and he heard police shouting at the tourists to move.
Meade gathered his two young children and ran through Lafayette Square. As he ran, he said, he could hear Secret Service officers shouting orders at the intruder, including ''get down on the ground'' and ''put your hands up.'' He heard a dog barking, he said.
The Sept. 19 fence-jumping incident ignited a major security review after reporting by The Washington Post revealed that Gonzalez got farther inside the White House than initially reported by the Secret Service. A cascade of other revelations soon emerged, including reporting by The Post that detailed the agency's fumbling response to a November 2011 incident in which a man fired a semiautomatic rifle into the White House residence while Sasha Obama was home. The Secret Service initially discounted the gunshots on Constitution Avenue as a shootout between rival gangs.
Also, a security contractor with a gun and three convictions for assault and battery was allowed on an elevator with President Obama during a Sept. 16 trip to Atlanta, violating Secret Service protocols, according to three people familiar with the incident.
The president was not told about the lapse in his security, the people have said.
Clarence Williams, Alice Crites, Juliet Eilperin, Ed O'Keefe and Spencer H. Hsu contributed to this report.
Jerry Markon covers the Department of Homeland Security for the Post's National Desk. He also serves as lead Web and newspaper writer for major breaking national news.
Julie Zauzmer is a local news reporter.
SECTION: {section=politics, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=3, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=15, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: {allow_comments=true, allow_photos=false, allow_videos=false, comments_period=14, comments_source=washpost.com, default_sort=, default_tab=, display_comments=true, is_ugc_gallery=false, max_items_to_display=15, max_items_to_display_top=3, moderation_required=false, stream_id=}!!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=3, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=15, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
SECTION: {section=politics, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=3, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=15, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: {allow_comments=true, allow_photos=false, allow_videos=false, comments_period=14, comments_source=washpost.com, default_sort=, default_tab=, display_comments=true, is_ugc_gallery=false, max_items_to_display=15, max_items_to_display_top=3, moderation_required=false, stream_id=}!!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, includesorts=true, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, childrenitemsperpage=3, includeheader=true, includeverifiedcommenters=true, defaulttab=all, includerecommend=true, includereport=true, maxitemstop=3, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=15, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
VIDEO- MASSIVE CAR RECALL! EXPLODING AIRBAGS! 11 AUTO MANUFACTURES ON THE LIST! - YouTube
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 03:51
VIDEO- Ebola Czar Ron Klain Says "Overpopulation" Top Concern - YouTube
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 20:55
VIDEO-Oath Upheld: Nashville Cops Refused Secret Service Request for Illegal Search of Obama Critic | Ben Swann Truth In Media
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:17
Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson recently sent a letter to Congress alleging that Secret Service agents asked Nashville police to falsify a warrant so that the agents could search the home of a Nashville resident who had posted about President Obama on Facebook.
Following Secret Service Director Julia Pierson's recent resignation over a major security breach at the White House, new allegations are facing the president's embattled security detail. According to Phil Williams at News Channel 5, Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson sent a scathing letter last week to the House Committee on Oversight complaining that Secret Service agents asked Nashville police officers to falsify a warrant during an investigation into a local resident who allegedly posted ''threatening'' comments about President Obama on Facebook.
Williams' report notes that, in January of 2013, Secret Service agents working out of the Nashville field office visited the home of the resident who made the Facebook postings and knocked on his door. Then, an agent called local police and asked for backup, stating that the individual was refusing to let them in without a warrant and appeared to be armed. When Nashville police arrived, they informed the Secret Service agents that the man in question is a licensed gun owner, did not violate the law, and that a warrant would be required in order to investigate further. Chief Anderson said in his letter, ''one of the agents then asked a [Nashville police] sergeant to 'wave a piece of paper' in an apparent effort to dupe the resident into thinking that they indeed had a warrant.'' Faced with a request to violate their oath of office and the rights of a citizen, the officers with the Metro Nashville Police Department flatly refused and left the scene.
Chief Anderson, upset that his officers were asked to violate a citizen's rights in a way that could have escalated into a dangerous situation, contacted then Secret Service Director Julia Pierson and Assistant Director A.T. Smith to file a complaint. Pierson did not reply to Anderson, but Smith did so in a demeaning tone, essentially telling Nashville's police chief to ''mind [his] own affairs'' and refusing to investigate the incident.
An angry Anderson then met with officials in the Secret Service's Nashville field office and asked, ''Do you think it is appropriate to wave a piece of paper in the air and tell him you have a warrant when you do not have a warrant?'' In his letter, Anderson noted that an unnamed Secret Service official replied, ''I don't know. I'm not a lawyer.'' Anderson then inquired as to why Secret Service agents would request that Nashville police falsify a warrant if they felt that it was something that they had lawful authority to do, implying that merely by asking, the agents were demonstrating their understanding that they were making an illegal request. Anderson noted that his ''complaint was not well-received'' and that officials would not offer any reassurance that similar incidents would be prevented in the future.
Chief Anderson believes that the Nashville incident is evidence that corruption in the Secret Service runs deeper than just its director. He feels that there are problems with the culture of the organization and that major administrative reform is necessary. As the above-embedded video by News Channel 5 points out, Anderson indicated that, in the future, Nashville police officers will have to request permission from top officials before assisting Secret Service agents in further investigations.
As a side note, back in May of 2013, shortly after the incident, Secret Service agents did not invite Nashville police to assist in providing security for First Lady Michelle Obama's visit to the Music City. It is not known whether the dispute over the warrant factored into that decision, but it is unprecedented for local police to be left out of security plans during a visit by a first lady.
The following two tabs change content below.Barry Donegan is a writer, musician, and pro-liberty political activist living in Nashville, TN. Donegan served as Director-at-Large of the Davidson County Republican Party from 2009-2011 and was the Middle Tennessee Regional Coordinator over 30 counties for Ron Paul's 2012 Presidential Campaign. Follow him at facebook.com/barry.donegan and twitter.com/barrydonegan
VIDEO-Martin Couture-Rouleau, hit-and-run driver, arrested by RCMP in July - Montreal - CBC News
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:16
The RCMP say they arrested Martin Couture-Rouleau, the driver in the fatal hit-and-run attack in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, as he was about to leave the country last summer, but didn't have evidence to charge him with any crime.'‹
Federal investigators had become concerned in June about the radicalization of Couture-Rouleau.
His passport was seized at that time, but he was released because investigators didn't have enough evidence to charge him.
RCMP confirmed that Martin Couture-Rouleau's passport had been seized and that he was one of 90 suspected extremists who the RCMP believed intended to join militants fighting abroad. (Facebook)
'We could not arrest someone for having radical thoughts. It's not a crime in Canada," RCMP Supt. Martine Fontaine told a news conference Tuesday.
On Monday, Couture-Rouleau struck two members of the military with his car in a St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., parking lot in what CSIS has described as "the violent expression of an extremist ideology."
One of those victims, Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent, has since died.
Couture-Rouleau was shot and killed by police following a high-speed chase as he fled the scene.
According to Quebec provincial police, Couture-Rouleau waited in the parking lot for at least two hours before he drove his car into the soldiers '-- one of whom was in uniform.
The parking lot in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, located about 40 kilometres southeast of Montreal, served a number of provincial, federal and military administrative offices, as well as several commercial properties.
Quebec provincial police Lt. Guy Lapointe said a gold-beige-coloured 2000 Nissan Altima, was spotted in the parking lot as early as 9:15 a.m. Monday. The men were hit by the car at around 11:30 a.m. ET.
Victim a long-serving member of the militaryThe deceased victim, Vincent, 53, was a 28-year veteran of the Canadian Forces. He had been stationed at bases across Canada.
He was posted in North Bay, Ont., until 2012 as a ''refrigeration and mechanical technician wing construction engineer.''
He had also served as a military firefighter. Two of his former colleagues told CBC News he was a quiet man who loved cycling and largely kept to himself.
"He was very friendly, very compassionate individual," said Dwayne MacIntosh, who worked with Vincent for three years on HMCS St John's.
"He would do everything for you and always went out of his way."
Suspect was 'radicalized': policeThe RCMP said they suspected Couture-Rouleau had become radicalized after converting to Islam.
Patrice Vincent, 53, served with the Canadian Forces for 28 years. (Department of National Defence)
They intervened in July when he attempted to leave the country to travel to Turkey.
"We did not have enough evidence to charge him and to detain him," the RCMP's Fontaine told the news conference Tuesday.
She said investigators followed up with his family and the imam at his local mosque, but had no reason to think or evidence to show that he would commit a crime on Canadian soil.
The last time police spoke with him was earlier this month.
Couture-Rouleau was one of 90 people being monitored by the RCMP as part of 63 national security investigations, RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson said Tuesday.
Those numbers refer to people suspected of being involved with terrorism-related activities, including financing, not specifically to fighting alongside extremists.
Converted to Islam in 2013So far, little is known about Couture-Rouleau. He had a pressure-washing business registered in Quebec. Legal documents show he converted to Islam in 2013.
Radio-Canada reported that Couture-Rouleau's Facebook page, which is no longer active, identified him as Ahmad LeConverti (Ahmad the Converted). That Facebook page shows a young man whose views had become more and more extreme over time.
Propaganda videos and other materials admiring jihad '-- or ''holy war'' against enemies of Islam '-- appeared on his Facebook profile page, including a video featuring the logo for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
Earlier this fall, an ISIS propaganda video called on the group's followers to target people in a number of countries, including Canada.
It specifically suggested running people over with cars.
Gilles Rouleau, the suspect's father, refused an interview request from CBC Radio-Canada, saying he wanted to mourn his son's death in peace.
''I lost my son. My son was everywhere [in the media] this morning. Leave me alone, I have no comment,'' the father said.
VIDEO-Terrifying video reveals heavy gunfire inside Canadian Parliament - Salon.com
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 19:13
Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper has released gunman entered the building Wednesday morning. The footage, which was uploaded to YouTube shortly after 11 a.m., local time, clearly captures the sound of heavy gunfire, as police responders make their way through the building and toward the shooter. One person, a Canadian soldier, was reportedly injured at the nearby National War Memorial shortly before the gunman entered Parliament.
Warning: This video contains graphic material, and could be extremely upsetting to viewers.
VIDEO-Cameraman declared Ebola-free after treatment
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 18:53
Texas Presbyterian Hospital officials are now admitting fault in their handling of the Ebola situation. Elsewhere an NBC cameraman is declared Ebola-free. The U.S. Ebola czar also takes office Wednesday.
Freelance TV cameraman Ashoka Mukpo is shown in Liberia in this August photograph. He was declared free of Ebola on Tuesday after undergoing treatment at a hospital in Nebraska.(Photo: Philip Marcelo, AP)
TV cameraman Ashoka Mukpo, evacuated from Liberia after becoming infected with Ebola last month, has been declared free of the virus.
"The knowledge that there's no more virus in my blood is a profound relief,'' Mukpo said via Twitter Tuesday afternoon. "I'm so lucky. Wish everyone who got sick could feel this.''
He will be allowed on Wednesday to leave the bio-containment unit at Nebraska Medical Center, the special infectious disease center where he has been undergoing treatment, the hospital said.
Mukpo, 33, was working as a freelancer with an NBC News crew in the West African nation when he was found to be infected and was flown to the Nebraska hospital.
A blood test confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control showed that Mukpo, one of eight Americans to have been diagnosed with Ebola, no longer has the virus in his bloodstream, the hospital said.
It said he's free to head home to Rhode Island.
"Our staff was confident it would be able to successfully care for another patient," said Phil Smith, medical director of the Biocontainment Unit at Nebraska Medicine '' Nebraska Medical Center. "We've learned first-hand that caring for a patient with the Ebola virus presents challenges you don't face in the regular hospital environment. But our years of training on protocol in the unit and gaining familiarity with all the personal protective equipment was certainly an advantage for us."
Before the announcement Tuesday, Mukpo was tweeting up a storm.
"I'm in awe of my good fortune" to be recovering from Ebola, Mukpo wrote on Twitter on Monday. "I'm a very, very lucky person. #blessed"
The freelance video journalist has been treated at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha since Oct. 6. His doctors had said that Mukpo, could be released by the end of the week if tests show he is free of the Ebola virus.
"Recovering from Ebola is a truly humbling feeling," Mukpo wrote. "Too many are not as fortunate and lucky as I've been. I'm very happy to be alive."
According to the World Health Organization, more than 9,200 people have been infected with Ebola and more than 4,500 have died, mostly in Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. The first person to be diagnosed with Ebola in the USA, a Liberian national named Thomas Eric Duncan, died last week at a Dallas hospital.
Mukpo is one of a handful of Americans infected with Ebola in West Africa who have been flown back to the USA for treatment. Richard Sacra, a physician, also was treated at the Nebraska Medical Center.
Both received blood transfusions from physician Kent Brantly, an Ebola survivor who was treated at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. Four hospitals in the USA -- in Montana and Maryland as well as the Atlanta and Omaha medical centers -- have specialized biocontainment units designed to handle the most dangerous infectious diseases.
Mukpo, from Providence, R.I., also received an experimental drug called brincidofovir, an antiviral made by North Carolina-based Chimerix that has not yet been tested in animals against Ebola, but it has shown promise in test tube studies.
Brantly and missionary Nancy Writebol both received an experimental drug called ZMapp. Supplies of that drug are exhausted.
USA TODAY
Ebola vaccine trials could start in Africa in January
An unidentified American who had Ebola was released Sunday from Emory. Two other Americans, both nurses who treated Duncan in Dallas, remain hospitalized. One of them, Nina Pham, has been upgraded to good condition, the National Institutes of Health said Tuesday.
Mukpo said on Twitter that he plans to start a blog called Ebola Diaries. For now, he's saying a lot through his tweets.
"I don't regret going to Liberia to cover the crisis. That country was a second home to me and I had to help raise the alarm," Mukpo wrote Monday. "But I feel so much empathy for the people in west Africa who are suffering with this. Their lives are important. And this disease is awful."
Mukpo wrote that he has "no idea how I got it. It was something fluky. My best guess is I touched a surface and didn't chlorinate fast enough." He added, "I was around a lot of sick people the week before I got sick. Thought I was keeping a good distance, wish I knew exactly what went wrong."
Contributing: William M. Welch in Los Angeles
Read or Share this story: http://usat.ly/1wiLXFb
Ebola outbreaks worldwide
The World Health Organization estimates that the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed more than 4,800 people.
Sponsored by
1
Ebola reports
2
Ebola treatment
3
Origin of Ebola virus
4
EFFECTS ON HUMANS
SOURCES: WHO, media reports and USA TODAY research. Note: Nigeria reported 20 cases and eight deaths, Senegal reported one case and no deaths. A separate outbreak of the Ebola virus, which is not related to the outbreak in West Africa, has killed 49 people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Updated Oct. 22, 2014.
Janet Loehrke and Anne Carey, USA TODAY
VIDEO-Former Blackwater guards found guilty in 2007 Baghdad killings | Las Vegas Review-Journal
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 18:11
WASHINGTON '-- In a sweeping victory for the U.S. government, a federal jury on Wednesday found four former Blackwater guards guilty on nearly every count they faced in connection with the 2007 killing of 14 unarmed Iraqis at a Baghdad traffic circle.
Jurors found three of the ex-guards guilty of manslaughter and weapons charges, and a fourth guilty of murder.
The verdict comes more than seven years after the shooting incident that outraged Iraqis and inflamed anti-American sentiment around the world.
A court clerk read the jury's verdict aloud on Wednesday around noon to a packed courtroom, repeating the word ''guilty'' 71 times as the defendants sat and listened silently.
Paul Slough, Dustin Heard and Evan Liberty were convicted of voluntary manslaughter in connection with at least 12 deaths at Nisur Square, where the Blackwater unit had been trying to clear a path for a U.S. State Department convoy. The Washington jury also found the three guilty of attempted manslaughter in connection with the wounding of at least 11 Iraqis who had been at the site.
The fourth guard, Nicholas Slatten, was found guilty of murder in connection with the first death at the circle.
The 2007 shooting stood out for its brazenness, even during a war replete with grisly incidents, and raised questions about the rules governing security contractors working overseas for the U.S. government.
Mohamad al-Quraishy, Deputy Chief of Mission at the Iraqi Embassy in Washington, came to court to hear the jury's verdict and said the Iraqi people had been closely monitoring the trial hoping that the guards would be convicted.
''They will welcome this decision,'' he said.
100 QUESTIONS
Wednesday's verdict follows more than seven weeks of deliberations during which jurors considered nearly 100 different questions.
During more than two months of trial, prosecutors flew family members of some of the victims to the United States to testify, and drew on the testimony of the other guards in the unit.
The government sought to portray the indicted guards as recklessly unleashing their massive firepower, including multiple grenades not designed to be used in urban areas, on innocent Iraqi civilians, including women and children.
Lawyers for the guards had argued that while the loss of life was unfortunate, the men were operating in a volatile war zone and used their weapons at Nisur Square only in response to incoming fire and a vehicle that appeared to be a car bomb.
The defendants' lawyers presented only four of their own witnesses at trial, but extensively cross-examined government witnesses and had tried to draw attention to inconsistencies in the testimony.
In the end, the jury did not acquit any of the defendants on a single count. It was unable to reach a decision on a few counts, leading to a mistrial on those counts.
Much of the case turned on whether the unit was actually facing incoming fire, or whether a white Kia realistically appeared to be a car bomb bearing down on the convoy. Slatten had been charged with the murder of the driver of the car.
When jurors heard closing arguments in the case in August, prosecutor Anthony Asuncion told them that on Sept. 16, 2007, there were ''no insurgents, no AK-47s, just people seeking shelter from these men.''
Slatten faces a life sentence on the murder charge. The other three face at least 30 years in prison based on the gun charge they were all convicted on, though defense lawyers are likely to appeal the verdict.
VIDEO-Red State Conservatives Are the Biggest Consumers of Adult Content Online, But WHY? | Americans Against the Tea Party
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 12:47
Nobody is as successful at failing to live up to the expectations that they hold others to quite like religious conservatives. It's been a public secret for a long time that the folks from the deep red states of the Bible Belt are among the most frequent consumers of adult materials; study after study has confirmed this. So while they're telling women to keep their knees closed and pretending that their teenage daughters aren't out rolling in the hay with a handsome boy, they're also clocking in the hits on those . . . shall we say, adult-oriented sites.
So, why?
The answer, it seems, may have something to do with psychological defense mechanisms.
In October, two Toronto researchers, Cara MacInnis and Gordon Hodson, published a study that correlated the popularity of sex and adult material-related search terms across various regions or states with information from a Gallup pool asking about religious and political attitudes. Their study design involves a number of different comparisons and considered the effects of poverty, population, and other variables.
Unsurprisingly, higher levels of religiosity and conservatism correlated higher search rates sexual content '-- specifically, it meant more searches for phrases like ''sex,'' ''gay sex,'' or ''sex images.''
While aggregate data can't be used to draw conclusions about individual behavior and is open to alternative interpretations, it fits with information from other sources. For instance, Business professor Benjamin Edelman at Harvard found that states that place a higher esteem on traditional gender roles and sexuality have higher rates of paid subscriptions for adult materials '-- which seems to imply they have no idea how the Internet works in these states, as well.
It dovetails with claims made by strip club owners that they make up to three times as much during Republican conventions than Democratic conventions or even the Superbowl. MacInnis and Hodsen quote an exotic dancer named Layla Love who said in 2001 that the arrival of the RNC brought with it ''15 to 17 hour shifts, every day'' until the convention ended. She added that ''So, for basically seven days straight, I will be in the club, every day, day shift and night shift.''
So we've stated the obvious; what's this got to do with defense mechanisms?
There are several that are relevant to this discussion:
Denial means simply refusing to acknowledge that some event or pattern is real.Repression involves pushing uncomfortable thoughts and feelings to the far recesses of the subconscious mind.Reaction formation is saying or doing the opposite of what you really want but won't allow yourself to express.Projection means assuming that others share the impulses, feelings, and vices that you find unacceptable in yourself.We've all encountered at least one of these before when dealing with a religious conservative: for instance, the Religious Right projects more than an IMAX theater. When factored into this discussion, however, it becomes easy to picture a group of so-called ''Values Voters'' at the convention after a night painting the town (Republican) Red:
Projection: Godless liberals are destroying this country'--feminazi sluts demanding sex with no consequences and faggots pushing their gay agenda on our children.
Repression: What?
Reaction formation: This town is full of trashy dancers who wag their big tits and tight asses at honest businessmen. We should lock them up and throw away the key.
Repression: What?
Denial: Real Christians, through prayer, have the power to resist temptation. Only righteous men in public office can stop the moral decay of this sex-obsessed country.
Repression: Did you say something?
We all have our failings; nobody is perfect. But if you're going to demand perfection from others and make no allowances for failure, you better damn well be perfect yourself. Not just ''saved'' '-- perfect. Conservatives have an extremely creepy attitude towards sex, basing their policies on antiquated, paternalistic ''virginity codes'' and purity myths that have harmful effects on not just their own warped self-image, but their children as well. For instance, it's hypocritical and harmful to spend more than a decade forcing abstinence-only education on teens, insisting that hormone-addled teens say ''no'' when they can't even do that themselves.
Sex is a fact of life. The sooner we grow up as a culture and admit that sex is part of our biology, and start portraying sex for what it really is, rather than idealized versions of what it's not, the better off we'll all be.
h/t Salon
Click here for reuse options!
VIDEO-Do store breaches change our shopping habits? - New York News
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 12:15
Enterovirus ruled out for NJ preschoolerEnterovirus ruled out for NJ preschoolerUpdated:Wednesday, October 22 2014 8:10 AM EDT2014-10-22 12:10:09 GMT
Authorities have determined that a second child who attended a New Jersey preschool where a child died of enterovirus D68 did not have the respiratory illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found no traces in the boy. Enterovirus was blamed for the death of 4 year-old Eli Waller last month.
Authorities have determined that a second child who attended a New Jersey preschool where a child died of enterovirus D68 did not have the respiratory illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found no traces in the boy. Enterovirus was blamed for the death of 4 year-old Eli Waller last month.
Teresa Giudice asks to serve term in halfway houseTeresa Giudice asks to serve term in halfway houseUpdated:Wednesday, October 22 2014 7:36 AM EDT2014-10-22 11:36:02 GMT
"Real Housewives of New Jersey" star Teresa Giudice is petitioning to serve most of her federal prison sentence in a halfway house. A lawyer for Giudice filed a letter with a judge in Newark this week, asking for a recommendation that she serve 12 months in a halfway house. Giudice was sentenced to 15 months in prison after she pleaded guilty to bankruptcy fraud and conspiracy. Her husband, Giuseppe "Joe" Giudice, was sentenced to 41 months.
"Real Housewives of New Jersey" star Teresa Giudice is petitioning to serve most of her federal prison sentence in a halfway house. A lawyer for Giudice filed a letter with a judge in Newark this week, asking for a recommendation that she serve 12 months in a halfway house. Giudice was sentenced to 15 months in prison after she pleaded guilty to bankruptcy fraud and conspiracy. Her husband, Giuseppe "Joe" Giudice, was sentenced to 41 months.
Letter demands arrest of Rubenstein on rape accusationLetter demands arrest of Rubenstein on rape accusationUpdated:Wednesday, October 22 2014 7:15 AM EDT2014-10-22 11:15:15 GMT
The attorney for a woman who's accused a prominent New York City lawyer of rape has delivered a letter to prosecutors demanding his arrest. Attorney Kenneth Montgomery says in the letter that Sanford Rubenstein should be arrested and charged with third-degree rape. The letter was hand-delivered Tuesday to District Attorney Cyrus Vance's office.
The attorney for a woman who's accused a prominent New York City lawyer of rape has delivered a letter to prosecutors demanding his arrest. Attorney Kenneth Montgomery says in the letter that Sanford Rubenstein should be arrested and charged with third-degree rape. The letter was hand-delivered Tuesday to District Attorney Cyrus Vance's office.
NY coach arrested on sex chargesNY coach arrested on sex chargesUpdated:Wednesday, October 22 2014 6:54 AM EDT2014-10-22 10:54:33 GMT
New York prosecutors say a 24-year-old basketball coach was charged with rape and criminal sexual act after she had sexual encounters with student who was 16 at the time. Megan Mahoney was arrested Monday and arraigned on the charges. She was released. Her attorney on Tuesday denied the accusations.
New York prosecutors say a 24-year-old basketball coach was charged with rape and criminal sexual act after she had sexual encounters with student who was 16 at the time. Megan Mahoney was arrested Monday and arraigned on the charges. She was released. Her attorney on Tuesday denied the accusations.
Passenger at Newark Airport being tested for EbolaPassenger at Newark Airport being tested for EbolaUpdated:Wednesday, October 22 2014 5:53 AM EDT2014-10-22 09:53:44 GMT
An airline passenger who arrived at Newark Liberty Airport Tuesday was taken to a hospital for "further evaluation" as part of the enhanced Ebola screening measures, a CDC official said. Screeners flagged the passenger for "reporting symptoms or having a potential exposure to Ebola," the official said.
An airline passenger who arrived at Newark Liberty Airport Tuesday was taken to a hospital for "further evaluation" as part of the enhanced Ebola screening measures, a CDC official said. Screeners flagged the passenger for "reporting symptoms or having a potential exposure to Ebola," the official said.
Football team hazing scandalSuspension of Sayreville coach upheldSuspension of Sayreville coach upheldUpdated:Tuesday, October 21 2014 10:40 PM EDT2014-10-22 02:40:09 GMT
The Sayreville, N.J., Board of Education voted behind closed doors Tuesday night to uphold the suspension of varsity football coach George Najjar to the disappointment of many who showed up to support him. Sayreville War Memorial High School football player Vincent Faultz was among the many stepping up to voice support for embattled varsity football coach.
The Sayreville, N.J., Board of Education voted behind closed doors Tuesday night to uphold the suspension of varsity football coach George Najjar to the disappointment of many who showed up to support him. Sayreville War Memorial High School football player Vincent Faultz was among the many stepping up to voice support for embattled varsity football coach.
Then & Now: New York City nightclubsThen & Now: New York City nightclubsUpdated:Tuesday, October 21 2014 6:29 PM EDT2014-10-21 22:29:17 GMT
New York City is known for many things. One of them is its amazing nightlife. These days going out to a nightclub usually means velvet ropes, loud music and bottle service. But that wasn't always the case. In fact nightlife as we know it was actually invented in New York in the 1920s. Before that era, people went to vaudeville shows or organized balls and dances.
New York City is known for many things. One of them is its amazing nightlife. These days going out to a nightclub usually means velvet ropes, loud music and bottle service. But that wasn't always the case. In fact nightlife as we know it was actually invented in New York in the 1920s. Before that era, people went to vaudeville shows or organized balls and dances.
911 system technology flaws911 system technology flawsUpdated:Tuesday, October 21 2014 5:57 PM EDT2014-10-21 21:57:35 GMT
We are used to technology helping us make our lives easier and work more efficient. But when it comes to the FDNY and EMS' 911 system, the city's top investigator said the technology is actually causing human error. An ambulance took 21 minutes to get to a house fire in Far Rockaway, Queens, last April, according to a new report.
We are used to technology helping us make our lives easier and work more efficient. But when it comes to the FDNY and EMS' 911 system, the city's top investigator said the technology is actually causing human error. An ambulance took 21 minutes to get to a house fire in Far Rockaway, Queens, last April, according to a new report.
What is Plyoga?What is Plyoga?Updated:Tuesday, October 21 2014 5:45 PM EDT2014-10-21 21:45:14 GMT
If you're looking for a new workout this fall, Plyoga might just be for you. Plyoga is a mix of high-intensity plyometrics -- or exercises that use rapid movements to build power -- and calming yoga. Stephanie Lauren, a lifelong athlete, came up with the idea for this fitness hybrid about a year ago. Each class is about an hour.There are four parts, beginning with a warm-up called "plyoflow" that really gets the blood flowing.
If you're looking for a new workout this fall, Plyoga might just be for you. Plyoga is a mix of high-intensity plyometrics -- or exercises that use rapid movements to build power -- and calming yoga. Stephanie Lauren, a lifelong athlete, came up with the idea for this fitness hybrid about a year ago. Each class is about an hour.There are four parts, beginning with a warm-up called "plyoflow" that really gets the blood flowing.
NYCLU, Cuomo agree on defending poorNYCLU, Cuomo agree on defending poorUpdated:Tuesday, October 21 2014 3:56 PM EDT2014-10-21 19:56:50 GMT
The New York Civil Liberties Union and the Cuomo administration are expected to announce an agreement to improve criminal defense for the state's poor.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says his administration's agreement with the New York Civil Liberties Union to improve criminal defense for the state's poor addresses longstanding inequities.
VIDEO-The Ebola Dictatorship | Real Jew News
Wed, 22 Oct 2014 06:24
Brother NathanaelOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:38 pmText ''Text'' Text
The Ebola DictatorshipBy Brother Nathanael KapnerCopyright 2014
Sometimes I think we're living in a B movie.
I'm talking about the Ebola crisis.
Why hasn't the government closed the borders vis- -vis West Africa?
Frieden of the CDC says we have to act now, yet he's against closing the borders.
[Clip: ''The Ebola epidemic is spiraling upward, that's what the director of the Centers for Disease Control will tell Washington tomorrow. Dr. Tom Freiden joins us from the CDC headquarters in Atlanta. Doctor, good morning. So just how grave is this situation?''
''It is the world's first Ebola epidemic and it's spiraling out of control. It's bad now. It's going to get worse in the very near future. There is still a window of opportunity to tamp it down but that window is closing. We really have to act now.''
''Dr. Frieden, when we spoke on the phone the other day, you remained opposed to travel restrictions, because in your words you said cutting commercial ties would hurt these fledgling democracies. Where did this opinion come from that that's of this high importance?''
''My sole concern is to protect Americans as well as to'...''
''Did someone advise you on that? Did someone outside of yourself? Somebody else advise you that it's a position that we need to protect fledgling democracies?''
''My recollection of that conversation is that that discussion was in the context of our ability to stop the epidemic at the source.''
''But we can get supplies and medical personnel into the Ebola hot zones. So stopping planes, and I've heard you say this on multiple occasions, that we have 1000 plus persons per week come to the United States from hot zones. Am I correct on that '-- coming from those areas?''
''There are approximately 100 to 150 per day.''
''Per day. Ok. What I don't understand, if the administration insists on granting, bringing Ebola cases into the United States, clearly you've determined how many Ebola infection cases the US public can handle. I mean, we know NIH can handle two of these beds. Do you know that number overall in this country of how many we can handle?''
''Our goal is for no patients'...''
''I understand, but as long as we don't restrict travel, and we are not quarantining people, and we are not limiting their travel, we still have a risk.'']
The lives of 300 million US citizens are at risk here, not 'fledgling democracies' in West Africa. Is our government THAT negligent?
No. They know exactly what they're doing. They want to turn this country into a dictatorship.
For with every crisis, the government hijacks it to gain more control over the population. Just look back a bit:
9/11 '' Freedom exchanged for TSA agents grabbing your gonads.
NDAA '' Bill of Rights exchanged for indefinite detention.
ObamaCare '' Independence exchanged for government control of our bodies.
Now they've given us Ebola'...creating fear, panic, and chaos.
Last week Obama appointed a 'czar''--get it?'...priming the sheep for 'dictatorship''--to supposedly protect us from Ebola'...but he's really bolstering Obama's ever-growing power.
Ron Klain, the new 'Ebola czar,' doesn't even have medical credentials.
He's a Jewish lawyer that peddles political campaign agendas. He was Biden's right hand man for many years.
Now, how will Klain and friends, (Frieden of the CDC is also a Jew), hijack the Ebola crisis?
A scenario is created to make the population cry out for help.
Big Brother promises health and well-being in exchange for more control.
This is how the virus of a dictatorship takes root.
Can't you see mandatory vaccines coming? You're in perfect health, but an Executive Order demands that a syringe be plunged into your veins.
Obama will come on TV looking oh-so-compassionate saying his Jewish czar is 'saving' American lives.
No. It means more tracking, less privacy, more power, less rights.
This is where Ebola's headed'...yet another manufactured crisis for Big Brother to seize what little of our rights remain.
I don't know about you but I've got Plan B ready to go.
Brother NathanaelOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:38 pmWatch This NEW Video Worldwide & In All EU Countries CENSOR FREE:
''The Ebola Dictatorship'' @
http://brothernathanaelchannel.com/watch_video.php?v=1071
This is my STATE-OF-THE-ART Video Platform AND I OWN It! It Bypasses ALL Jew-Censorship.
ALL Jew-Ruled EU Countries Can NOW View ALL My Vids Without JEW-CENSORSHIP! @
http://brothernathanaelchannel.com/
Brother NathanaelOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:40 pmStreets Across America!
Here is my UPDATED Schedule of my Street Evangelism:
* NYC - October 22-28
* Chicago - November 14-16
* Atlanta - November 20-24
* Sarasota Fl - Dates To Be Announced
'-- Please Consider Sponsoring Me To Come To YOUR City! '--
Please Help Me Financially To Continue my Street Evangelism, Videos, and Articles.
To Donate Via PayPal CLICK:
https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=Q5ZHDE2BRW5AG
To Donate Via Click & Pledge CLICK:
https://co.clickandpledge.com/sp/d1/default.aspx?wid=40066
By Mail:
The Brother Nathanael Foundation; PO Box 1242; Frisco CO; 80443.
May Christ Bless Us All!
+Brother Nathanael @http://brothernathanaelfoundation.org/about
Brother NathanaelOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:43 pmDear Real Jew News Family,
The Ebola 'crisis' fits EXACTLY into what the Jew Rahm Emanuel once said:
''Never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it's an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.''
Now we got the JEW Ron Klain who's positioned to put Emanuel's dictum into action.'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'---Please help me to continue!
To Donate Your TAX-DEDUCTIBLE Contribution Via PayPal CLICK:
https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=Q5ZHDE2BRW5AG
OR Donate Your TAX-DEDUCTIBLE Contribution Via Click & Pledge @
https://co.clickandpledge.com/sp/d1/default.aspx?wid=40066
By Mail:
TO: The Brother Nathanael Foundation; PO Box 1242; Frisco CO; 80443.
Personal Needs: (Rent, food, utilities, necessities etc)
Brother Nathanael; PO Box 1242; Frisco CO 80443.
PS - ALL cash donations by mail come in safely. Many thanks to those who send cash. (Got your cash donation dear Thomasina.)
Much Love In Christ!
+Brother Nathanael Kapner @
http://brothernathanaelfoundation.org/about
The SeedOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:44 pmRight on the money.
9/11 was an inside job.
The United States is a brutal Jewish dictatorship.
The SeedOctober 21, 2014 @ 6:49 pmBro N, please be careful in Jew-infested Gotham City, we'll be praying for you.
God Bless, and please record/publish the death threats as a deterrent.
TaylorOctober 21, 2014 @ 8:24 pmThe tremendous +BN is on top again of yet another issue. No surprise.
However, I am left almost speechless with regard to the extent that even the very educated and intelligent in this country continue to meander through their lives almost oblivious to unfolding disasters and mounting tyranny.
Eileen K.October 21, 2014 @ 9:20 pm@+BN
You hit the proverbial nail right on the head with this latest Video, THE EBOLA DICTATORSHIP, Brother.
What on earth does a Constitutional Republic need a ''Czar''? That's totally un-American, to say the least.
The black Jew who occupies the White House is obsessed with ''Czars''; and, this Ron Klain, a Jewish lawyer, is going to take charge of handling this Ebola crisis, even though he has NO medical credentials?
Obongo's a total lunatic for appointing this guy; and Klain's a lunatic for taking the job. Both of them know darn well that he's totally unfit for this job; yet, Obongo went ahead and appointed his co-religionist to this post by Executive Order, and not through the normal steps of presenting this nomination to the Senate for a vote.
By doing so, he has violated the Separation of Powers clause in the Constitution.
This was not a recess appointment; both Houses of Congress were in session when Obongo made this appointment. There is no excuse for him not to seek the Senate's approval.
Bush, Jr. is a Boy Scout, compared to the usurper who's currently squatting in the White House; at least, he consulted the Senate when he appointed someone (when Congress was in session); and, other appointments he had made when Congress was in recess.
Obongo went far beyond the lawless actions of his predecessor; no wonder more and more people are beginning to believe that he is the Anti-Christ. He's surely acting as though he is.
I'll continue praying for you while you're on your Evangelism travels, especially while you're in Jew York City, Br. Nathanael; just watch your back, please.
While you're there, you may want to go to Ground Zero this Saturday afternoon and give the 9/11 Truth activists who'll be demonstrating there some words of encouragement; they'll certainly need your encouragement.
God bless you in your travels, Brother; I'll be donating to your Foundation either at the end of this month, or at the beginning of the next.
Eileen
Saved by graceOctober 21, 2014 @ 9:27 pmAgain I say what about the Baptduh church in Dallas paying the airlines tickets for Duncan and importing the first case of Ebola.
What's the chance they got a fat cash donation by now?
19 beds in 4 facilities nation wide, yup like that is going to help.
What about moving Plum Island to Manhattan, Kansas. They could not maintain level 4 so they left millions of dollars of contaminated mess in New York in January and moved to mid America. Read up on this.
And why would the CDC be collecting patents on Ebola? That aint right, its conflicted interests.
Better stock up on colloidal silver and the naturals.
Great Video +BN. Virus of dictatorship, exactly.
I praise God for you and your insight. In Christ I ask blessings for you daily.
Brandon FiskOctober 21, 2014 @ 9:40 pmBrother,
You are usually right on target, but a shade off this time.
The explanation is much simpler.
We have an African president who cares more about Africa than about the USA. That's all there is to it.
Mario HerreraOctober 21, 2014 @ 9:42 pmThomas R. Frieden is a JEW.
Isn't CREEPY that every Dept. in the USA Gov is owned by JEWS?
That scares me more than EBOLA.
VIDEO-Patrick Moore on Sky News Australia - 21 Oct 2014 - YouTube
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 23:23
VIDEO-A sampling of tweets Monica Lewinsky has received since joining Twitter - The Washington Post
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 17:23
This morning, as part of her new campaign against cyberbullying '-- a dangerous, largely unchecked issue that impacts thousands of Internet- users and is responsible for a number of very tragic deaths '-- Monica Lewinsky did perhaps the bravest thing a young woman involved in a sex scandal at age 22 could do.
She joined Twitter, ground zero for Internet misogyny.
https://twitter.com/MonicaLewinsky/status/524184076450684928
''Having survived myself, what I want to do now is help other victims of the shame game survive, too,'' she said in a speech at the Forbes' 30 Under 30 summit. ''I want to put my suffering to good use and give purpose to my past.''
Since voicing that intention '-- which is a good one, by most measures '-- these are some of the responses she's received.
So, to recap: Woman joins Twitter to start admirable anti-cyberbullying campaign. Woman tweets literally two times. Trolls come out by the dozens, many of them hurling distinctly gendered, slur-dripping abuse.
Good job, Internet: You've done yourself proud today.
Speaking at the Forbes Under 30 Summit in Philadelphia, former White House intern Monica Lewinsky discusses how she went viral before social media existed, and why it was so damaging to her reputation. (Forbes Under 30 Summit)
Caitlin Dewey runs The Intersect blog, writing about digital and Internet culture. Before joining the Post, she was an associate online editor at Kiplinger's Personal Finance.
SECTION: {section=lifestyle, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
SECTION: {section=lifestyle, subsection=null}!!!INITIAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!!UGC FROM ARTICLE: !!!
FINAL commentConfig: {includereply=true, canvas_permalink_id=washpost.com/8bvh5zpd9k, allow_comments=true, commentmaxlength=2000, includeshare=true, display_comments=true, canvas_permalink_app_instance=m6yzjj840m, display_more=true, moderationrequired=false, includefeaturenotification=true, comments_period=14, defaultsort=reverseChronological, canvas_allcomments_id=washpost.com/km4ey0dajm, includevoteofftopic=false, allow_videos=false, childrenitemsperpage=3, markerdisplay=post_commenter:Post Commenter|staff:Post Writer|top_commenter:Post Forum|top_local:Washingtologist|top_sports:SuperFan|fact_checker:Fact Checker|post_recommended:Post Recommended|world_watcher:World Watcher|cultuer_connoisseur:Culture Connoisseur|weather_watcher:Capital Weather Watcher|post_contributor:Post Contributor, includesorts=true, includeheader=true, defaulttab=all, includeverifiedcommenters=true, includerecommend=true, maxitemstop=2, includereport=true, source=washpost.com, allow_photos=false, maxitems=7, display_ugc_photos=false, includepause=true, canvas_allcomments_app_instance=6634zxcgfd, includepermalink=false}!!
VIDEO-"Anti-Petrodollar" CEO Of French Energy Giant Total Dies In Freak Plane Crash In Moscow | Zero Hedge
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 03:50
Three months ago, the CEO of Total, Christophe de Margerie, dared utter the phrase heard around the petrodollar world, "There is no reason to pay for oil in dollars," as we noted here. Today, RT reports the dreadful news that he was killed in a business jet crash at Vnukovo Airport in Moscow after the aircraft hit a snow-plough on take-off. The airport issued a statement confirming "a criminal investigation has been opened into the violation of safety regulations," adding that along with 3 crewmembers on the plane, the snow-plough driver was also killed.
De Margerie, 63, joined Total in 1974 after graduating from the ‰cole Sup(C)rieure de Commerce in Paris. He served in several positions in the Finance Department and Exploration & Production division. In 1995, he became President of Total Middle East before joining the Total's Executive Committee as the President of the Exploration & Production division in May 1999. In May 2006, he was appointed a member of the Board of Directors. He was appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Total on May 21, 2010.
* * *
As RT reports,
According to preliminary data, the light aircraft collided with a snow-cleaning machine on takeoff, a source at the capital's airport told RIA.
The aircraft was sending distress signals while still in the air and reporting an engine fire and fuselage damage, LifeNews reports. Upon crashing on the runway, the aircraft was engulfed in flames, reportedly killing everyone on board.
While initials reports suggested four people died in the tragedy, officials report that five bodies were found at the crash site, one allegedly being the driver of the snow-cleaning vehicle.
Vnukovo Airport has temporarily suspended all flights following the incident.
''A criminal investigation has been opened into the violation of safety regulations after a light aircraft crash in the capital's Vnukovo airport,'' transport official Tatyana Morozova told RIA.
An investigative group is working at the crash site, Morozova added. In addition to people who were on board the plane, she said, the driver snowplow was killed.
Debris from the aircraft was scattered up to 200 meters from the crash site, according to the rescue services. The engine was found some 50 meters from the crash site, while one of the landing gears was ripped off and discovered nearly 200 meters from the main mass of debris.
* * *
The plane he was aboard...
* * *
Of course this could merely be a desparately sad accident... aside from the coincidence of this so recently...
Christophe de Margerie, the CEO of Total (the world's 13th biggest oil producer and Europe's 2nd largest), believes "There is no reason to pay for oil in dollars." Clearly, based onhis comments, that we have passed peak Petrodollar.
As Reuters reports,
Oil major Total's chief executive said on Saturday the euro should have a bigger role in international trade although it was not possible to do without the U.S. dollar.
Christophe de Margerie was responding to questions about calls by French policymakers to find ways at EU level to bolster the use of the euro in international business following a record U.S. fine for BNP.
...
"There is no reason to pay for oil in dollars," he said. He said the fact that oil prices are quoted in dollars per barrel did not mean that payments actually had to be made in that currency.
So even a major beneficiary of the status quo appears to see the end in sight for the Petrodollar.
* * *
Furthermore, despite Western-imposed sanctions on Russia that prohibit western financing and technology transfer to some Russian energy projects, Total is continuing to pursue a natural gas project in Yamal, a joint venture with Russia's Novatek and China's CNPC.
''Can we live without Russian gas in Europe? The answer is no. Are there any reasons to live without it? I think '' and I'm not defending the interests of Total in Russia '' it is a no,'' the Total boss told Reuters back in summer.
* * *
And of course, it had to happen in Russia!
Average:Your rating: NoneAverage: 5(28 votes)
VIDEO-Republican Makes a Powerful Case for a Travel Ban '-- Despite What the 'Experts' Say | Video | TheBlaze.com
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 09:45
Are health experts playing into political games when it comes to Ebola?
Speaking to Candy Crowley on CNN's ''State of the Union'' Sunday morning, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) gave a passionate summary of why he thinks a travel ban is necessary to protect the U.S. from West Africa's Ebola outbreak '-- even though health officials have spoken out against a ban:
The doctors and experts that are saying [a travel ban wouldn't work] are working for the [Obama] administration and are repeating the administration talking points. Their arguments don't make sense. The first argument about the screens doesn't make sense because they don't work during the 21-day incubation period and the second argument that they make is they say a travel ban would prevent health care relief workers from arriving in West Africa. No one is talking about banning flights into West Africa, of course physicians and nurses and health care workers should be allowed to go in there and we can send them in on charter flights or military C-130 aircraft with appropriate safety precautions. That's very different from saying commercial airlines should fly, day after day after day, with hundreds of passengers connecting with thousands of passengers coming all throughout the country. The arguments they're giving don't make sense.
Cruz went on to accuse the Obama administration of turning a public health crisis into a political issue.
(H/T: Mediaite)
'--
Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter
VIDEO-NIH's Fauci: No, Ebola Problems Are Not Due To Budget Cuts | Weasel Zippers
Mon, 20 Oct 2014 05:20
Smashes liberal talking points.
Via WFB:
NIH immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci said that one ''cannot say'' that the lack of an Ebola vaccine is due to budget cuts.
A campaign ad that surfaced Monday blames the GOP for cutting for recent Ebola deaths, boldly declaring ''Republican cuts kill.''
Facui told Meet the Press host Chuck Todd that the left-wing narrative is simply not correct.
''I don't agree with that I have to tell you quite honestly,'' Fauci said. ''I think that the NIH has had constraints in resources for 10 years, and all of biomedical research has been less than its robust activity.''
Todd pointed out that one of Fauci's NIH colleagues had ''hinted'' that, had the NIH received more funding, an Ebola vaccine would have existed today. Fauci quickly dismissed the notion.
''You can't say that. You can't say we would or would not have this or that,'' Fauci said. ''Everything has slowed down, but I would not make that statement.''

Art

Image
Load image
Image
Load image

Agenda 21

Patrick Moore -2-arctic vs antarctic ice.mp3
Patrick Moore -3- has it warmed or not?!-hiroshima.mp3
Patrick Moore-1- co-founder of GP on Oz tv vs Erwin Jackson of Climate Institute.mp3

Ebola

Cruz calls for flight ban.mp3
Ebola Czar-Ron Klain apparently thinks population in Africa is the problem.mp3
Ebola Indemnity BBC.mp3
Kirby on ebola military posse comantatus.mp3
Obama Disease In Place.mp3
USA Today reports Ebola patients under control, all is well.mp3

Equality

Equality_Dropout.mp3
Equality-School Grades_Grading.mp3

JCD Clips

egg freezing.mp3
fence jumper cbs.mp3
ISIS online NCCT guy olsen.mp3
ISIS online.mp3
long cbs bullcrap about canada peter mansbrige.mp3
nazar afisi on books ONE.mp3
nazar on babbit.mp3
nazar TWO.mp3
PBS attack in caanada intro eifel WTF.mp3
PBS attack in canada 2.mp3
person of interest TV show zinger.mp3
ronin bats 1.mp3
ronin bats 2.mp3
state department ISIL 2.mp3
state deptartment ISIL attacks.mp3
women freezing eggs intro.mp3

Obama Nation

Nashville top cop busts open SS warrant scandal.mp3

Ottowa

Art Cashin of UBS on Ottowa shooting- Wolves!.mp3

Real News

Carol CNN glee over palin.mp3

SnowJob

OTM-getting_naked_with_jake.wav

Vote Dem

bullcrap airbag recall southern states only.mp3

War on Twitter

Lewinski forbes under 30 at 38-patient zero.mp3
Loading troll messages...