766: Cyber Soldiers

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

2h 53m
October 18th, 2015
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Executive Producers: Lifewater Ranch Knight of the Golden Coin, Sir Dwayne Melancon Duke of the Pacific NW, Sir Atomic Rod Adams

Associate Executive Producers: David Warner, Stuart Fawcett, Jacy Cohen

Cover Artist: Nick the Rat

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Presidential Proclamation -- Blind Americans Equality Day, 2015
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:36
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
BLIND AMERICANS EQUALITY DAY, 2015
- - - - - - -
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
Blind and visually impaired individuals make extraordinary contributions to our Nation, and their achievements reflect an enduring belief at the heart of America's promise: that no person's potential should be limited by anything other than the scope of their dreams. On Blind Americans Equality Day, we recommit to making good on this promise by ensuring all our people, including those living with visual impairments or other print disabilities, have the tools and resources they need to realize their greatest aspirations.
Twenty-five years ago, our country took a major step toward achieving this goal with the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which mandates all places that comprise our shared life remain accessible to all people. And each day, in part thanks to this law, millions of legally blind and visually impaired Americans are better able to develop their skills and contribute to communities across our country.
My Administration remains committed to ensuring ours is a Nation where the blind community has every chance to fully realize their incredible talents. Earlier this year, we hosted the White House Summit on Disability and Employment, which provided businesses, organizations, and advocates with information and Federal resources for hiring individuals with disabilities. Additionally, we have prioritized improving the accessibility of Federal Government websites for people with disabilities. We also continue to support the inclusion of Braille in our Nation's schools -- because no child should be prevented from reaching their fullest potential due to blindness or vision impairment. And across all levels of government, we are working to expand access to high-quality workforce, education, and rehabilitation services for Americans with disabilities.
Blind and visually impaired people are valued members of our communities, and from lecture halls to laboratories and sports stadiums to conference rooms, they drive meaningful progress and help build a stronger, more vibrant Nation. On Blind Americans Equality Day, we rededicate ourselves to building a society where everyone has an equal shot at the American dream and can benefit from all our country has to offer.
By joint resolution approved on October 6, 1964 (Public Law 88-628, as amended), the Congress designated October 15 of each year as "White Cane Safety Day" to recognize the contributions of Americans who are blind or have low vision. Today, let us reaffirm our commitment to being a Nation where all our people, including those with disabilities, have every opportunity to achieve their dreams.
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 15, 2015, as Blind Americans Equality Day. I call upon public officials, business and community leaders, educators, librarians, and Americans across the country to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies, activities, and programs.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- Minority Enterprise Development Week, 2015
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 14:20
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 15, 2015
MINORITY ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT WEEK, 2015
- - - - - - -
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
A PROCLAMATION
America is at its best when all our people have the tools and resources they need to pursue their dreams and meet their full potential. Entrepreneurs help spur innovation and prosperity, and ensuring that minority-owned businesses remain strong and vibrant is vital to driving our Nation's progress. During Minority Enterprise Development Week, we recognize the crucial role they play in our economy, and we recommit to upholding one of our founding ideals: that all people -- regardless of what they look like or where they come from -- can reach for their piece of the American dream and contribute to our country's success.
Minority-owned firms comprise over one-fifth of our Nation's businesses and add $1 trillion in output to our economy each year. My Administration is committed to supporting these engines of growth, which is why we have cut taxes 18 times for America's small businesses -- of which roughly 15 percent are minority-owned. Many minority enterprises also depend on exports as an important source of revenue, and I am pursuing a trade agenda that will allow our businesses to be at the center of today's global economy -- further enabling them to expand their horizons while strengthening our middle class. And in an effort to equip the business community with the most relevant information needed to navigate bureaucracy, we launched www.Business.USA.gov, where firms can find services to help them hire more people and grow their enterprise.
For over two centuries, America has advanced thanks to the grit and inherent ingenuity of our people. Throughout Minority Enterprise Development Week, let us rededicate ourselves to continuing this legacy by empowering all our citizens to utilize their unique talents and abilities and by working to ensure our minority-owned enterprises have every chance to flourish and succeed.
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 18 through October 24, 2015, as Minority Enterprise Development Week. I call upon all Americans to celebrate this week with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities to recognize the many contributions of our Nation's minority enterprises.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Forest Products Week, 2015
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:25
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 16, 2015
NATIONAL FOREST PRODUCTS WEEK, 2015- - - - - - -BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICAA PROCLAMATION
America's forests have defined the landscapes of our country's natural beauty for centuries, and protecting them is imperative to preserving our world for future generations. In addition to providing renewable energy, wildlife habitat, soil health, local foods, and water, they purify the air we breathe and support an industry that employs more than one million Americans. Each day, we use a wide range of forest products -- from the wood in our homes to the paper we write on to the packaging that protects our food, medicine, and other goods we rely on. During National Forest Products Week, we recognize the ways in which our Nation's forests contribute to our livelihood and recommit to ensuring their health and stability for centuries to come.
Forests today are at risk due to increasingly extreme wildfires, droughts, severe outbreaks of insects and disease, and climate change. My Administration is committed to sustaining their health and resiliency and to increasing the pace and scale of forest restoration. By collaborating with States, local governments, tribes, industry, private land owners, and other partners, we are working to ensure our forests stay strong and the trails that wind throughout remain intact for all to enjoy. As part of our effort to address climate change, we launched the Climate Action Plan, which recognizes that forests are critical to our effort to address carbon pollution and that we must conserve and restore our forests to protect biodiversity, water resources, and our livelihoods. Additionally, through our America's Great Outdoors Initiative, we are enabling individuals and communities in every corner of our country to take up the cause of safeguarding these natural wonders.
The natural resources and materials provided by forests are essential to our way of life. From timber to biofuels, forests can provide sustainable sources of important goods, and America will continue to benefit from their strength and vitality. Healthy forests lead to a strong economy, a clean environment, and a sustainable future for all our people. During National Forest Products Week, let us rededicate ourselves to preserving them and pledge to always remember the irreplaceable role they play in our lives.
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 18 through October 24, 2015, 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 sixteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
Presidential Proclamation -- National Character Counts Week, 2015
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:09
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
October 16, 2015
NATIONAL CHARACTER COUNTS WEEK, 2015- - - - - - -BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICAA PROCLAMATION
Since our Nation's founding, generations of people of goodwill have contributed to the basic notion that America succeeds when we look out for one another and lend a hand to building a brighter future for our children and grandchildren. As we celebrate National Character Counts Week, we draw inspiration from those who paved the way for greater tolerance and empathy among all people, recognize the efforts and abilities of those around us, and work to carry forward our common principles and instill them in the hearts and minds of future generations.
In every corner of our country and the globe, we see ordinary people whose desire to make a difference reflects the best of our innate human character. They are the brave men and women in uniform who serve and sacrifice to protect the freedoms we hold dear, and the educators and mentors who tirelessly strive to lift up the lives of those who look up to them. They are parents and coaches and neighbors and colleagues, and in every community they are combatting cynicism and working to realize a better tomorrow for strangers and friends alike. Whether they are the first responders who keep us safe or simply good-hearted citizens, these individuals exemplify our shared values and stand for a powerful fundamental truth: Our society is what we make of it, and each of us -- no matter who we are or where we come from -- can make meaningful change in the lives of others.
This week, as we hold true to the ideals that bind us together, let us remind our children of their important role in charting our journey forward and empower them with strength and conviction to pursue progress with hope and compassion. If they are able to draw on the inherent qualities of our Nation's character -- our commitment to each other, our courage and optimism in the face of challenges, and our determination to make the world we share a better place -- I am confident they will continue serving as stewards of kindness and charity and contributing to a fairer, more generous, more peaceful America.
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 18 through October 24, 2015, 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 sixteenth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand fifteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth.
BARACK OBAMA
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Migrants
Pro-refugee candidate stabbed in Cologne, Germany - CNN.com
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:05
He vented to officers his disapproval of the candidate's liberal policies on refugees and criticized those of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, according to German media reports.
But the election for senior mayor of the city of Cologne, in the country's west, will go forward as planned on Sunday, a day after the stabbing. And victim Henriette Reker, who is expected to make a full recovery, was still up for election as an independent candidate.
Four other people sustained injuries in the attack, and a 44-year-old male suspect was arrested at the market, police told journalists on Saturday.
Police say they believe he acted alone. He was carrying two knives, one of them a combat knife.
Refugee floodGermany has recently opened its borders to a flood of migrants pouring into Europe from Syria, Iraq and other crisis regions.
In poll after poll, large majorities of Germans have voiced approval of their government's decision to take them in, and many Germans have turned out to train stations to welcome new arrivals with open arms and applause.
But right-wing radicals -- and residents tagging along with them -- have hurled stones and bottles at buses carrying migrants while screaming hate slogans at them. Dozens of new housing complexes for asylum seekers have gone up in flames lit by arsonists.
German news magazine Der Spiegel reported on its online news service that the suspect in Reker's stabbing has had years of contact with neo-Nazi groups and with at least one far right party that has been outlawed.
Reker has stuck up for refugees as other politicians have advocated turning them out of temporary shelters, according to media reports. And she has praised new arrivals as adding value to German society.
"When I speak of refugees, I don't speak of desperate measures and burdens but instead of potential and opportunity," she recently said in a statement.
Reker campaign outragedReker's campaign team has given updates on her condition on her official Facebook page, saying she is improving, and has expressed its outrage.
"We are sad and appalled over the targeted attack on Henriette Reker, our colleagues and other campaign workers," the team said. "We are shocked by the misdeed's presumed xenophobic motive."
The city of Cologne has a reputation in Germany for a prevalent attitude of diversity and acceptance, and Reker's campaign platform openly appealed to this.
Her web page on her integration policy is titled, "Cologne is many-colored." On it, she vows to promote equal opportunity and equal appreciation for of the city's citizens regardless of ethnic, religious or gender background.
Though Reker is running as an independent, which is rare in German politics, she is enjoys broad support from Germany's conservative, centrist and leftist ecological parties.
CNN's Dakota Flournoy contributed to this report.
Germany Approves Laws to Limit Migrants
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 13:49
BERLIN'--Germany's lower house of parliament approved legislation that aims to curb the record influx of migrants, which has led to a rebellion against Chancellor Angela Merkel from within her own party, as the country struggles to find sufficient housing for the thousands of asylum seekers who arrive every day.
''The number of those coming to us this year is simply too high. I don't know anybody who's seriously disputing this,'' said Interior Minister Thomas de Maizi¨re. ''We work intensively toward reducing this number--on...
Elections 2016
dnc troubles
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 15:54
Before things went awry, Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii had been planning to be in Las Vegas for her party's first presidential debate. Gabbard is one of five vice chairs of the Democratic National Committee; of course she would be there. But instead of talking up her party's prospects on the Strip earlier this week, Gabbard was in Honolulu. Her presence in Sin City was strictly virtual, and anything but boosterish: She spent debate day giving cable-news interviews via satellite, claiming that, as retribution for loudly calling for more Democratic debates than the DNC currently envisions, she was deemed unwelcome in Vegas by the committee's chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz'--who Gabbard suggested is an enemy of free speech, as well as a liar.
For most debate viewers and Democratic voters, the Gabbard flap, if it registered at all, was little more than a sideshow. But among Democratic officials and strategists, the dust-up was an embarrassing public spectacle'--a boiling-over of long-simmering frustrations and resentments within the party hierarchy at a highly inopportune moment.
Of two dozen Democratic insiders with whom I spoke this week, including several DNC vice chairs, not one defended Wasserman Schultz's treatment of Gabbard. Most called it ridiculous, outrageous, or worse. Many argued, further, that the debate plan enacted by the chairwoman is badly flawed'--an assessment shared by many party activists, left-bent supporters of Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley, and those candidates themselves, all of whom see it as a naked effort to aid and comfort Hillary Clinton. And they maintained that the plan was a clear reflection of Wasserman Schultz's management style, which many of them see as endangering Democratic prospects in 2016 and beyond.
''The person who is supposed to be leading us is not leading us.''
R.T. Rybak, DNC Vice Chair
One top Democrat who feels precisely this way is DNC Vice Chair R.T. Rybak, a former mayor of Minneapolis who, along with Gabbard, has publicly called for more debates. But Rybak's indictment of Wasserman Schultz is more sweeping'--and pointed'--than that. ''In the days before and after the debate I kept my mouth shut,'' Rybak told me by phone on Thursday. ''But I've begun to deeply question whether she has the leadership skills to get us through the election. This is not just about how many debates we have. This is one of a series of long-running events in which the chair has not shown the political judgment that is needed.''
I asked Rybak if he was calling for Wasserman Schultz to resign.
''I'm coming really close,'' he replied. ''I'm not quite doing that yet, but unless I see some significant shift in the way she's going to operate and see that she has some ability to reach out and include people who disagree with her, then I seriously question whether she's the right person to lead us.''
Rybak and other Democratic critics of Wasserman Schultz have been holding their tongues about what they see as her deficiencies for years. But the dispute over debates has proven sufficiently contentious that it is suddenly causing those tongues to loosen.
The road to this place began in May, when the DNC announced that there would be just six sanctioned debates, and that candidates who took part in forums not green-lit by the committee would be excluded from the approved ones. Clinton's camp, which had lobbied against an early DNC proposal for eight debates, was well pleased. Sanders, O'Malley, and their people were less so. But the wider Democratic world mostly yawned.
Then, in August, the DNC released the debate schedule, with only four debates scheduled to take place before the nomination contest begins in earnest in Iowa on Feb. 1'--and with that, all hell broke loose.
Whatever debate plan the DNC pursued was always bound to be controversial. But the manner in which Wasserman Schultz crafted the scheme all but guaranteed an eventual blowup. According to several people with front-row seats for the hatching of the plan, the chairwoman made her decision unilaterally, without consulting or even telling the rest of the committee's high command, including her vice chairs, in advance.
''She presented this to us as a fait accompli as she was about to go out and announce it to the whole committee,'' Rybak told me. ''I said to her, 'Well, at least there's some way you can explain why you came to that decision.' She didn't even do that. She gaveled people out of order without any explanation.''
''For someone who's the head of a national party, you would think she'd be better at, you know, politics,'' says a senior Democrat with close ties to the DNC. ''How do you not line up your own folks? How do you not touch base and say, 'This is what I need from you guys'? At best, you consult; at least, you notify. But her default is to see her vice chairs as nuisances, not partners'--not even close. The word partner would never cross her lips.''
The result was predictable'--and, in fact, predicted by some Wasserman Schultz advisers. Many state party officials, who prize debates as organizing opportunities, were furious at both the plan and the chairwoman's refusal even to consider a change of course. (''We're going to have six debates'--period,'' she declared to reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast in Washington.) In mid-September, Massachusetts Democratic Party Vice Chair Deb Kozikowski accused her of ''establishing a full-fledged dictatorship at the DNC.'' A few days later, at a speech before the New Hampshire Democratic Party convention, Wasserman Schultz was greeted with raucous chants of ''We want debates!''
At the same time, her motives were called into question, most aggressively by O'Malley, who accused the DNC of ''rigging the process and stacking the deck'' in Clinton's favor. Given the desire of the other candidates for more debates, the insistence of the Clinton team on fewer, and Wasserman Schultz's status as a long-time Clinton ally (she was a co-chair of Hillary's 2008 campaign), the accusations carried a distinct whiff of plausibility.
Through it all, the DNC's vice chairs and other officers offered scant defense of Wasserman Schultz's plan. Several felt (and still feel) strongly that more debates would benefit the party and its candidates, especially with the Republican Party staging more and gaining greater exposure for its sprawling field of hopefuls; that the impression the DNC was effectively running a protection racket on behalf of the front-runner would be damaging to the committee's image; and that, outcome aside, it was maddening and absurd that Wasserman Schultz had shut them out of the decision-making process.
On Sept. 9, Gabbard and Rybak went public with their dissent, issuing a joint statement calling for additional debates and an end to the exclusivity rule. But it was Gabbard who became the public face of internal opposition to Wasserman Schultz's plan. After an MSNBC interview last week in which she reiterated her stance, her chief of staff received a call from DWS's congressional chief of staff, Tracy Pough, who conveyed the message, according to Gabbard, ''that if I'm going to continue talking about that that I shouldn't go to the debate.''
The DNC and Wasserman Schultz insist Gabbard wasn't disinvited. But they admit that she was asked to ''refocus'' her message and stop talking about ''process,'' with the strong suggestion that if she couldn't do those things, she should reconsider attending the debate. ''She chose not to come because I guess she can't,'' Wasserman Schultz said on Tuesday in an interview with Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC.
That interview was part of an escalating back-and-forth on cable, in which the broadsides issued by the combatants grew increasingly blunt and harsh'--with Gabbard introducing the issue of how the debate plan was determined. ''The chairwoman said publicly that she had communicated and consulted with vice chairs and officers of the DNC prior to making her decision,'' Gabbard told Mitchell. ''The fact is, there was no communication. There was no consultation with the vice chairs and officers, of which I am one. So it's unfortunate that she continues to say things that aren't true.''
Asked later by Wolf Blitzer on CNN about Gabbard's charge that she dissembling, Wasserman Schultz bobbed and weaved, implying that it was Gabbard who was lying. ''She's unfortunately spending a lot of time on process,'' the chairwoman said. ''There were many people consulted, including officers, about our process.''
''She says she was never consulted,'' Blitzer pressed.
Wasserman Schultz dodged again: ''Wolf, this is the problem, that she wants to distract from the focus that needs to be on our candidates.''
Watching this unseemly display unspool hours before the debate, Democratic insiders shook their heads'--in no small part because they believed it would lead nowhere useful, and certainly not to more debates. Because few ordinary voters seem concerned over the number of debates, the campaigns are unlikely to bring pressure to bear on Wasserman Schultz. And while Democratic activists and DNC members are concerned, they lack the power to force her hand. In fact, the only two players with the mojo to do so are Clinton and President Barack Obama. But the former has no appetite for more debates and the latter has never evinced much interest in the DNC (except as a vehicle for his own re-election).
It was Wasserman Schultz's performance on cable that pushed Rybak over the edge. ''If this was an isolated incident, then it should be swept under the rug'--but it's not,'' he said.
I asked Rybak if he agreed with those who cast Wasserman Schultz as dictatorial. He said that he did. Calling her decisions ''arbitrary'' and ''reckless,'' he went on, ''As a Democrat, you have to be able to bring people you don't agree with into the tent. You can't gavel them down out of order when they have a different opinion. You can't go on national TV and say things about them that aren't true. And this is something that frankly a lot of people have kept their mouth shut about for a long time. I have too. But I think the time has come for all those people who come up to me and say this is a problem to stop hiding behind their political expediency. '... We have the candidates. We have the issues. There's only one single thing that I see standing between us and a great election coming up and that's the fact that the person who is supposed to leading us is not leading us.''
As Rybak suggested, he is far from alone in casting broader doubt on Wasserman Schultz's stewardship of the DNC. Her critics level an assortment of charges against her: that, in the age of super-PACs, the Koch brothers, and an array of other Republican billionaires prepared to devote vast sums to the causes of recapturing the White House and retaining the GOP's hold on Congress, she is ill-equipped to steer the party as it navigates the forbidding electoral terrain ahead; that she is insufficiently tech-savvy; that she is neither attuned to the party's grassroots nor focused on the methodical expansion of the Obama coalition; that she and her staff are not unlike Selina Myer and hers on Veep.
Says the Democrat with close ties to the committee: ''The next chair is going to have to burn the place down and rebuild it.''
Wasserman Schultz and her staff, sensing a brewing insurrection at the DNC, are busily circling the wagons. Asked for comment on Rybak's criticisms, they provided statements from her chief of staff, Amy Dacey; vice chair Maria Elena Durazo; finance chair Henry Munoz; treasurer Andy Tobias; and secretary Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. All expressed delight in the Vegas debate. Some commended Wasserman Schultz for her role in making it happen'--or for being ''hardworking'' or a prodigious fundraiser. But just two addressed, and then only obliquely, the Gabbard contretemps or the thrust of Rybak's comments: Durazo (DWS ''is committed to manage any disagreements, like the number of debates, in a way that keeps us focused on our priorities'') and Rawlings-Blake (''The Chair regularly consults with DNC officers on a host of topics'').
With the Democrat-on-Democrat conflict ratcheting up, people close to the DNC predict a full-on assault on Rybak by Wasserman Schultz and her allies. If it happens, the internecine battle is likely to widen and get uglier'--and quickly. Mo Elleithee, who until a few months ago served as the committee's communications director and was intimately involved in the deliberations over the debate plan, has already cast his lot with Rybak. ''You'd be hard pressed to find a DNC member who doesn't absolutely love RT,'' Elleithee told me late Thursday night. ''He's a glass-half-full kind of guy who always does everything he can to help the team. That's what makes this whole brouhaha so remarkable. And it was all so avoidable.''
However the drama over the state of the DNC and Wasserman Schultz's future now unfolds, the inaugural debate on Tuesday night offered critics of her plan to limit such events still more ammunition, as Clinton's performance made a mockery of any calculation that more debates would work to her disadvantage. And when O'Malley called out Wasserman Schultz from the debate stage'--''I see the chair of the DNC here, look how glad we are actually to be talking about the issues that matter the most to people around the kitchen table'''--the lusty roar from the crowd made clear that its sympathies were with him and not her.
Early the next morning, I ran into O'Malley as he prepared to appear on Morning Joe. Beaming at the memory, he crowed, ''The loudest cheers were from her own committee members!''
Contributing: Steven Yaccino
CYBER!
NSA is recruiting Cyber Soldiers, advertising to programmers on LinkedIn
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 14:20
Show the National Security Agency (NSA) what you've got!Register now for the 2015 NSA CyberSprint Competition.
About the NSA CyberSprintAre you a college student or recent grad who can hack with the best? Complete the challenges in the Phase 1 qualifying round to earn a spot in Phase 2. Be among the first to hack into a simulated system and retrieve data in Phase 2 to prove you have what it takes. NSA will recognize individual finishers in both phases. Plus, if you choose, you can open your work to NSA technical recruiters, so now is the time to launch your career!
About NSA The National Security Agency leads the world in signals intelligence and information assurance. Our signals intelligence mission cracks foreign code to uncover the secrets of U.S. adversaries. Our information assurance mission protects U.S. classified information systems from attack. It's extraordinary work for an extraordinary mission. Visit NSA Careers to learn more about student opportunities and full-time employment.
Army experiments with cyber warfare
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:00
Cybersecurity
Army experiments with cyber warfareBy Sean LyngaasOct 14, 2015Ronald W. Pontius, Deputy to the Commanding General for U.S. Army Cyber Command and Second Army.
The Army continues to experiment with equipping its land forces with cyber capabilities, a recognition that future combat operations could increasingly have a cyber dimension.
The service is conducting five or six experiments over about 15 months that "will inform the'...doctrine, organization, force structure of what it really means of how the Army should integrate this [cyber] capability in unified land operations," Ronald Pontius, deputy to the commanding general at Army Cyber Command, said at an Oct. 14 press briefing.
Army officials point out that the Army has a clear need to equip its soldiers with cyber capabilities at the tactical level, perhaps more so than the Navy or Air Force. The service is conducting the series of experiments to figure out how that works in practice.
One experiment took place in May at the Joint Readiness Training Center in Fort Polk, La., where members of the Army's Third Brigade took part in offensive and defensive operations on a network. Training sets the stage for the simulation, according to Maj. Gen. Stephen Fogarty, the commander of the Army's Cyber Center of Excellence.
"We don't just deliver a capability without having a good foundation," said Fogarty, who witnessed the exercise.
The experiments are meant to see how various disciplines -- electronic warfare, cyber operations and signals intelligence -- can gel during operations.
"One of the things we learned is that we still have to'...improve our integration of electronic warfare capabilities into that mix," Fogarty said of the experiment at Fort Polk. That type of experiment is nonetheless a "good model for the future" development of cyber capabilities, he added.
The Army would do well to better utilize open-source tools to build its cyber capabilities, said Army Cyber Command Sgt. Maj. Rodney Harris. He described a recent demonstration in which Army captains were able to remotely unlock a device in the trunk of a car. Demonstrations like that help commanders realize "this really is an effect that we can place on a target in time and space, just like if it was indirect fires or direct fires from artillery or an air weapons team," Harris said.
Out in the field is "where innovation is going to happen," he added. "It's not going to happen sitting in CyberCom headquarters or in the NSA facilities because they're too stifled with overhead rules and processes."
About the Author
Sean Lyngaas is an FCW staff writer covering defense, cybersecurity and intelligence issues. Follow him on Twitter: @snlyngaas
#BLM
Inside Hillary Clinton's Meeting With Black Lives Matter
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:09
WASHINGTON -- Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton met with Black Lives Matter advocates on Friday in Washington, D.C., to discuss racial justice and law enforcement reform. Attendees said Clinton talked more frankly about racism and the long legacy of slavery than she does in public, and they characterized the meeting as tough and productive.
Clinton and her top competitor for the Democratic nomination, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), have courted Black Lives Matter activists while seeking to distinguish themselves on criminal justice reform. Prominent members of the movement released a platform called Campaign Zero in August, which addresses issues such as the use of body cameras and police demilitarization.
Clinton met with a number of activists, including DeRay Mckesson, Brittany Packnett, Johnetta Elzie and Samuel Sinyangwe, all of whom are on the Campaign Zero planning team and are affiliated with the group We the Protesters. Those present from the Clinton camp were national political director Amanda Renteria, senior policy adviser Maya Harris and African-American outreach director LaDavia Drane, attendees said.
''In the end, I felt heard,'' Mckesson said. ''It was a tough conversation, and we didn't agree about every approach or everything. But she was willing to be pushed, and it was a candid conversation, and that's important.''
Clinton spoke directly about the continuing effects of racism and slavery, which attendees said she called America's ''original sin.'' Elzie said she is curious to see if Clinton will begin speaking more frankly about racism in public. Clinton ''would listen and acknowledge that her experience was totally different than any of the black people at this table,'' Elzie said.
''It took her awhile to get there, but she got there. So I'm hopeful that she will continue to have this educational conversation with herself to acknowledge her privilege,'' Elzie said. Sanders was much quicker to acknowledge his position in the world, she noted.
''You saying that you know that you're white, you know that you have power, and you know that you are wealthy is not the same as seeing it and knowing that the way that police interact with you is completely different than how they will ever interact with us,'' Elzie said. ''I felt like Bernie understood that.''
Mckesson said Clinton, like many Americans, also seemed to struggle with the notion that ''police don't actually always make people feel safe'' and that Americans don't all share the same conception of the police.
Both Elzie and Mckesson said they were disappointed that Clinton seemed resigned to the fact that the federal government doesn't play a major role in local policing.
''She kind of downplayed the role of the federal government and placed it all on state and local government,'' Elzie said.
''I think she can take a harder stance on how she understands the role of the federal government in protecting the rights of people of color and pushing and modeling for local and state governments,'' Mckesson said.
The activists said they pressed Clinton on providing economic support to racially marginalized communities, establishing national use of force standards and changing the role the federal government plays in law enforcement reform.
At one point, Cherno Biko, a transgender activist, spoke about trans women of color who have been killed this year. Biko discussed approaching the killers of those women with love, rather than locking up more people and contributing to a system of mass incarceration.
In a moment captured on video, Clinton told Biko, "You're a better person than me wanting to love folks who kill somebody." She added, "Listen, I will forgive them, but I'm not going to love them."
Clinton is pushing for an end to mass incarceration, but skeptics point to her history of advocating for tough-on-crime policies with her husband in the 1990s. When the presidential candidate met in August with other Black Lives Matter activists, the exchange was viewed as terse. "Look, I don't believe you change hearts. I believe you change laws," she said at that meeting.
The Clinton campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment about Friday's meeting.
The Campaign Zero team met with Sanders in September. Afterward, they said he was open to being pushed on criminal justice issues, but expressed concerns that working in an overwhelmingly white state may cause him to be out of touch with the concerns of black voters. Packnett said she came out of that meeting "still thinking about where I will put my vote and not yet having an answer."
"In both meetings we had frank conversations," Packnett said Friday. After the meeting with Clinton, "I still don't know where my vote's going," she said. "That's significant, because there are still many conversations and bridges to build with communities like mine."
#BlackLivesMatter : Chat Partners with Hilllary | American Everyman
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:18
Posted on October 17, 2015 by willyloman
by Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report
The best thing that could be said about the #BlackLivesMatter Campaign Zero team is that they are an embarrassment, political tourists in the halls of empire. The truth is, however, much worse. In two meetings with Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton, they have offered no demands worthy of the name, choosing instead to imagine that they are ''pushing'' Clinton and the Democratic Party into some stance advantageous to Black people. In reality, the #BlackLivesMatter clique has dissipated the energy '' and threat '' of angry Black bodies, hands and missiles in motion in Ferguson and Baltimore. Quickly fading is the specter of a Black movement from down below that struck real fear in the Obama administration and much of the U.S. power structure. Instead, #BlackLivesMatter provides harmless chat partners for Hillary and the other presidential hopefuls.
The #BLM operatives claim they ''spent months'' studying Clinton's positions on the issues, in preparation for the meeting. Why? To gauge how far they could ''move'' the war criminal and corporate thief? Move her towards what? Campaign Zero's ''demands'' are an eclectic assortment of criminal justice reform ideas and recommendations, many of them straight out of Obama's presidential task force on policing, and borrowed ''best-practice'' police procedures (Seattle is their favorite department). When #BLM folks claim they have ''lots'' of demands, it actually means they have no core demands, at all.
[read more here]
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Filed under: #BlackLivesMatter, Soros Fascism
#BlackLivesMatter: Chat Partners with Hillary | Black Agenda Report
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:09
by BAR executive editor Glen FordThe #BlackLivesMatter organization is now part of the 2016 Democratic Party election machinery, assuming its role as a power broker on behalf of Black people. It's a familiar historical pattern, except for the speed with which the transition has taken place. ''The #BLM philosophy is that therapeutic dialogue with members of the power elite is politically more effective than the presentation of core demands.''
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford''When #BLM folks claim they have 'lots' of demands, it actually means they have no core demands, at all.''
The best thing that could be said about the #BlackLivesMatter Campaign Zero team is that they are an embarrassment, political tourists in the halls of empire. The truth is, however, much worse. In two meetings with Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton, they have offered no demands worthy of the name, choosing instead to imagine that they are ''pushing'' Clinton and the Democratic Party into some stance advantageous to Black people. In reality, the #BlackLivesMatter clique has dissipated the energy '' and threat '' of angry Black bodies, hands and missiles in motion in Ferguson and Baltimore. Quickly fading is the specter of a Black movement from down below that struck real fear in the Obama administration and much of the U.S. power structure. Instead, #BlackLivesMatter provides harmless chat partners for Hillary and the other presidential hopefuls.
The #BLM operatives claim they ''spent months'' studying Clinton's positions on the issues, in preparation for the meeting. Why? To gauge how far they could ''move'' the war criminal and corporate thief? Move her towards what? Campaign Zero's ''demands'' are an eclectic assortment of criminal justice reform ideas and recommendations, many of them straight out of Obama's presidential task force on policing, and borrowed ''best-practice'' police procedures (Seattle is their favorite department). When #BLM folks claim they have ''lots'' of demands, it actually means they have no core demands, at all.
''#BlackLivesMatter provides harmless chat partners for Hillary and the other presidential hopefuls.''
The Democrats scoped them as political assets, early on: that's why the Democratic National Committee overwhelmingly voted to ''endorse'' #BlackLivesMatter back in August. The trio of #BLM founders, Patrisse Cullors, Opal Tometi, and Alicia Garza, formally rejected the official DNC embrace, but the #BLM's chat-and-tweet-squads have continued to make the Democrats look good by pretending to hold them accountable through meaningless, meandering, demand-less meetings.
DeRay Mckesson, Brittany Packnett, Johnetta Elzie, Cherno Biko and Samuel Sinyangwe provided Hillary Clinton with another useful backdrop, last week. They appear to believe their mission was to ''educate'' Clinton (although they would have done far better to have educated themselves on political movement history, practice and theory). "This was an opportunity to get input from black people, who are experts of their own lives, solutions to dismantling anti-black racist institutions and policies," Johnetta Elzie told reporters. #BLM thinks that relaying the recommendations of an Obama task force to a former Obama Secretary of State equals providing ''solutions to dismantling anti-black racist institutions and policies.''
''They appear to believe their mission was to 'educate' Clinton.''
Actually, the #BLM crew's primary mission was to force Clinton to mentally grapple with white privilege, and to grasp how Black people ''feel.'' #BLM's aim is to assure that the next president has a deeper understanding of the workings of racism '' presumably, deeper than the current, Black one. In the course of the conversation, Elzie said Clinton
''...would listen and acknowledge that her experience was totally different than any of the black people at this table. It took her awhile to get there, but she got there. So I'm hopeful that she will continue to have this educational conversation with herself to acknowledge her privilege. You saying that you know that you're white, you know that you have power, and you know that you are wealthy is not the same as seeing it and knowing that the way that police interact with you is completely different than how they will ever interact with us.''
The #BLM philosophy is that therapeutic dialogue with members of the power elite is politically more effective than the presentation of core demands. (Certainly, it is better for the future careers of the #BLM interlocutors.)
When it came to actually doing something about the Black condition, Clinton was less forthcoming. ''I think she can take a harder stance on how she understands the role of the federal government in protecting the rights of people of color and pushing and modeling for local and state governments,'' said DeRay Mckesson. ''She kind of downplayed the role of the federal government and placed it all on state and local government,'' said Johnetta Elzie.
Clinton used the meeting to announce her opposition to private prisons '' which may have come as a shock to her campaign contributors from Wall Street's corporate incarceration firms.
Elzie offered that Bernie Sanders has a better understanding of Black people's justifiable fears of police. She and McKesson told the press they would wait to see more specifics from Clinton before deciding who to support. Cherno Biko said Clinton ''hasn't earned my endorsement yet, but I'm looking forward to her releasing a racial justice platform in the coming weeks." Brittany Packnett emerged from the meeting ''still thinking about where I will put my vote and not yet having an answer."
''The #BLM crowd milked the incipient movement for all it was worth.''
They will all endorse one of the Democrats, sooner rather than later. The #BlackLivesMatter tent has already been folded up inside the Democratic Party, where slick Black ''activists'' on the make go to catch the express elevator to the executive suites. In less than a year, the #BLM crowd milked the incipient movement for all it was worth, presenting themselves as the interlocutors between the streets and Power. It's been one hell of a journey '' a great hustle. They have arrived at where they wanted to be: part of the age-old Black Petit Bourgeois Shuffle, dancing to the Master's tune, while complaining that their pale partners still don't have the right rhythm.
The demand from the streets remains the same as it has been since the imposition of the modern Black mass incarceration regime, two generations ago: Black community control of the police '' by any means necessary. The Black Is Back Coalition for Social Justice, Peace and Reparations will rally and march on the White House on Saturday, November 7 '' as it has every year since 2009 '' under the banner ''Black Power Matters.''
The demand for Black community control of police is called forth by both the principle of self-determination and the facts of Black existence in the United States. But self-determination does not exist in the practice of #BlackLivesMatter, which has squandered Black people's dignity and the momentum of an emerging movement.
We wish them a swift and complete assimilation into the corridors of Power '' which was their mission, all along.
BAR executive editor GlenFord can be contacted atGlen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.
Oil & Gas
NEW BOARD MEMBERS-Why haven't major U.S. news outlets discussed the implications of Genie Energy's potentially huge oil discovery in the Golan Heights? - Atomic Insights
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:44
About a week ago, my UPI energy update feed provided an attention-grabbing headline Major reserve discovery confirmed in Golan Heights. The story subtitle was even more intriguing. Leadership of company behind the find seen as close to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.
According to the story, exploratory wells drilled by Genie Energy's Israeli subsidiary, Afek Oil and Gas, found a layer of hydrocarbon-containing rocks that was 10 times as thick as the world wide average thickness of such rocks.
Other stories found in relatively minor or regionally focused publications have guessed that the discovery might contain enough oil and gas to supply Israel's annual demand for many decades.
Here is a quote from the original UPI story that supports the subtitle claim.
Former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney had served as an adviser to Genie. In a profile published by Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Genie CEO Jonas was described as one of the primary campaign supporters and U.S. allies of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
With a little more searching, I found another thought-provoking article in MarketWatch from September 9, 2015, a month prior to the announcement about the discovery confirmation that was described in the UPI story. Though I have several feeds that bring me stories from MarketWatch on certain topics, this one apparently passed through those filters or did not capture my attention at the time it was published. Genie Energy (GNE) Announces Additions to Advisory Board.
According to the MarketWatch report, the additions to Genie Energy's advisory board have some easily recognizable names. They are: Dr. Lawrence Summers, Governor Bill Richardson, Senator Mary Landrieu and R. James Woolsey. Those four join Richard Cheney, K. Rupert Murdoch, Lord Jacob Rothschild, and Michael Steinhardt.
Of that list, the only name I'd never heard before was Steinhardt. Here is the brief bio that MarketWatch published.
Michael Steinhardt '-- Noted Wall Street investor and Principal Manager, Steinhardt Management LLC. Founder Steinhardt, Fine, Berkowitz & Co., and noted philanthropist. Mr. Steinhardt serves as Chairman of the Strategic Advisory Board.
I realize that large oil discoveries are not uncommon and that they don't always make headlines, but it seems to me that this one has enough potential impact on the world's economy and geopolitical structure to be worthy of at least some punditry.
As far as I can tell, however, there has been little or no coverage in any major U.S. news outlet. That is despite the fact that my initial introduction to the story came from UPI, one of the world's largest and most respected wire services.
I don't watch much network or even business television news, so maybe this story has been the subject of discussions that I simply missed. However, search results on ''Golan Heights oil'' show no coverage in the Washington Post, New York Times, Wall St. Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, LA Times, or any other big city newspaper with significant international coverage.
If you have seen or heard something that I missed, please share it. I'm also interested in speculation about why the story appears to have failed to attract the attention of the news filterers here in the U.S.
Note:I hope you detect the ironic tone in the above. I'm well aware of the long running controversies about the intensely disputed territorial boundaries of the Golan Heights.
Additional ReadingHaaretz October 11, 2015 '' Genie Confirms Report of Possible Big Golan Oil Find
F-Russia
Turkey's ''Russian Drone Shootdown Story'' is a Repeat of Ukraine Propaganda from 2014'... is it the same drone?
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:37
by Scott Creighton
Turkey's tiny little drone shoot-down story is actually a rehash of another propaganda effort from a year ago in Ukraine. And in fact, they very well might have used the same drone. ಠ_à²
I don't know if the Turkish military are in bed with the CIA or what, but the story is the EXACT same thing someone tried in Ukraine back in May of 2014.
''An unmanned aerial vehicle shot down by Ukrainian army on May 28 (2014), according to preliminary report, is a type of ''Orlan-10'" UAV produced by Russia, the Security Service of Ukraine's spokesman said.'' Kiev Post, May 2014
Turkish military claims they dispatched a fighter jet to take care of what appears to be a hobbyists glider drone. They claim they made 3 attempts to contact it before their fighter took it out. Here's what is left of it.
First of all, this thing wasn't downed by a fighter jet. It would have been torn to shreds by a machine gun on one of those things and a rocket would have turned it into dust like all those concrete floors in the Twin Towers on 9/11 (how did that happen again? Oh yeah'... ''gravity'')
This thing looks like someone just put it there.
As a matter of fact'... it looks an AWFUL lot like that ''Russian drone'' from Ukraine, doesn't it?
The story is out that this thing is a Russian made Orlan-10 . It looks like a variation of it.
Shortly afterwards, reports emerged citing a source in Turkey's General Staff, claiming that the UAV was actually a Russian-made Orlan-10. RT
But isn't that funny? When the Ukraine wanted to demonize Russia, they just happened to shoot down a Russian Olan-10 drone and then use that to prove Russia was involved militarily in Ukraine.
Now, as Russia is working to demolish our CIA-backed terrorists in Syria, Turkey's corrupt military leaders just happen to find the exact same Russian Olan-10 flying around in Turkish airspace and they take it out with Nurf darts fired from a Turkish fighter jet.
Yeah right.
#WorstPropagandaRetoolEver!
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#Socialism
'No ifs, no buts, no junior doctor cuts': 20,000 doctors protest in London (video) | American Everyman
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:56
Posted on October 18, 2015 by willyloman
(The Obamacare cancer is spreading to the UK. The fascist privatization zealots are pushing to turn their NHS into a for-profit venture and of course, they way they do that is by under-funding targeted agencies then pointing at them saying they are broken and have to be ''fixed'' by privatization. 20,000 showed up to say ''no'' to this process the other day.)
from RT
Over 20,000 doctors have marched through London in protest against changes in contracts for junior doctors regarding new pay and working conditions which have been introduced by the UK government.
Young health care professionals say that the changes will force them to work longer hours, resulting in a greater risk of burnout. The British Medical Association (BMA), argues that under the new proposed conditions junior doctors will see pay cuts of up to 30 percent.
''They are starting with the junior doctors and they will finish with the NHS, the NHS is in peril and we must do everything we can to save it. Let's fight together and let's save our NHS,'' Robert Galloway, one of the protesters, said.
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NWO / WWIII
Unusual happenings with inactive radio stations, signaling something big about to happen?
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:45
Submitted by IWB, on October 15th, 2015
On SKYKING (8992 or 11175 kHz USB) a call sign called ''COLLAPSE'' which has not been heard since 2001 has just broadcasted 4 messages to numbered stations/units in the last few minutes.
''FUXEBOX'' and ''Reykjavik,'' have also broadcast in the last few days and they haven't been heard since 1991 (collapse of the Soviet Union).
''COLLAPSE'' has sent 3 messages in the last few minutes.
COLLAPSE message one: http://vocaroo.com/i/s1hGyA2GR6HI
Collapse message Two: http://vocaroo.com/i/s1ETZ3l9fp0G
Collapse message Three: http://vocaroo.com/i/s03ZI6ui70LY
Message Four from ''FLATTOP!'' (ANOTHER STATION NOT HEARD IN YEARS!): http://vocaroo.com/i/s01smhgkyNDL
We do not know what these codes mean, but it considered
These are alerts to ''All Stations'' before the codes are sent. I did my best to record all these but missed recording ''the alert phrase'' where they said ''All stations, all stations.'' This has all happened in the last half hour (0230-0304 EST). I didn't record these or write this up btw, this was a thread from 4chan that popped up on /pol/ Edit: Go here for updateshttp://www.defconwarningsystem.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=3269&start=30
MP
23 and Me
Cops are asking Ancestry.com and 23andMe for their customers' DNA | Fusion
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 15:12
When companies like Ancestry.com and 23andMe first invited people to send in their DNA for genealogy tracing and medical diagnostic tests, privacy advocates warned about the creation of giant genetic databases that might one day be used against participants by law enforcement. DNA, after all, can be a key to solving crimes. It ''has serious information about you and your family,'' genetic privacy advocate Jeremy Gruber told me back in 2010 when such services were just getting popular.
Now, five years later, when 23andMe and Ancestry Both have over a million customers, those warnings are looking prescient. ''Your relative's DNA could turn you into a suspect,'' warns Wired, writing about a case from earlier this year, in which New Orleans filmmaker Michael Usry became a suspect in an unsolved murder case after cops did a familial genetic search using semen collected in 1996. The cops searched an Ancestry.com database and got a familial match to a saliva sample Usry's father had given years earlier. Usry was ultimately determined to be innocent and the Electronic Frontier Foundation called it a ''wild goose chase'' that demonstrated ''the very real threats to privacy and civil liberties posed by law enforcement access to private genetic databases.''
The FBI maintains a national genetic database with samples from convicts and arrestees, but this was the most public example of cops turning to private genetic databases to find a suspect. But it's not the only time it's happened, and it means that people who submitted genetic samples for reasons of health, curiosity, or to advance science could now end up in a genetic line-up of criminal suspects.
Both Ancestry.com and 23andMe stipulate in their privacy policies that they will turn information over to law enforcement if served with a court order. 23andMe says it's received a couple of requests from both state law enforcement and the FBI, but that it has ''successfully resisted them.''
23andMe's first privacy officer Kate Black, who joined the company in February, says 23andMe plans to launch a transparency report, like those published by Google, Facebook and Twitter, within the next month or so. The report, she says, will reveal how many government requests for information the company has received, and presumably, how many it complies with.
''In the event we are required by law to make a disclosure, we will notify the affected customer through the contact information provided to us, unless doing so would violate the law or a court order,'' said Black by email.
Ancestry.com would not say specifically how many requests it's gotten from law enforcement. It wanted to clarify that in the Usry case, the particular database searched was a publicly available one that Ancestry has since taken offline with a message about the site being ''used for purposes other than that which it was intended.'' Police came to Ancestry.com with a warrant to get the name that matched the DNA.
''On occasion when required by law to do so, and in this instance we were, we have cooperated with law enforcement and the courts to provide only the specific information requested but we don't comment on the specifics of cases,'' said a spokesperson.
As NYU law professor Erin Murphy told the New Orleans Advocate regarding the Usry case, gathering DNA information is ''a series of totally reasonable steps by law enforcement.'' If you're a cop trying to solve a crime, and you have DNA at your disposal, you're going to want to use it to further your investigation. But the fact that your signing up for 23andMe or Ancestry.com means that you and all of your current and future family members could become genetic criminal suspects is not something most users probably have in mind when trying to find out where their ancestors came from.
''It has this really Orwellian state feeling to it,'' Murphy said to the Advocate.
If the idea of investigators poking through your DNA freaks you out, both Ancestry.com and 23andMe have options to delete your information with the sites. 23andMe says it will delete information within 30 days upon request.
Shut Up Slave!
Internet porn viewers 'should expect viewing histories to be made public' | News | Lifestyle | The Independent
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 16:04
If you've watched porn online this year then you should be prepared for your browsing history and name to be made public for the world to see, a US blogger has warned.
Brett Thomas, a San Francisco-based software engineer, has written in a post on his blog that if you've watched porn online in 2015, "even in Incognito mode", then brace yourself because "you should expect that at some point your porn viewing history will be publicly released and attached to your name".
Thomas says that if hackers were able to get hold of a list of logs that can give them an idea of a users' name, plus logs for sensitive websites like porn, then the two could be cross-referenced to put a name to a viewing history.
Those two hacks would have to be large-scale and are unlikely '-- and both must take place at the same time '-- but Scott warns that technologists should work harder to prevent such leaks from happening. "All that's needed are two nominal data breaches and an enterprising teenager that wants to create havoc," Scott writes.
In 2014 hackers claimed to have leaked the password details of more than 13,000 Xbox and Playstation users, as well as users of online stores, and there have been regular instances of hackers posting internet users' bank details online.
In these instances users have been easily identifiable, but browser footprints, global identifiers and user tracking mean that even supposedly anonymous internet users could potentially be identified.
In August last year purportedly naked photographs of more than 100 celebrities were leaked online by a hacker onto the website 4chan.
Mr Thomas, a Harvard graduate, argues that "regular people" could be next.
"I think the next big internet privacy crisis could expose the private and potentially embarrassing personal data of regular people to their neighbors," he writes.
NYPD has some scary-sounding x-ray vans '' and it's refusing to talk about them
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:47
z-backscatter-x-ray-van
The New York Police Department has equipped x-rays in some of its vans but it's refusing to talk about them due to ''security concerns.'' Even though these x-ray vans reportedly cost $825,000 a piece, NYPD is staying completely silent about them and their purpose.
DON'T MISS: Adobe confirms major Flash vulnerability, and the only way to protect yourself is to uninstall Flash
''Those are issues I'd prefer not to divulge to the public at this time,'' NYPD Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said, NYMag reports. ''I will not talk about anything at all about this '-- it falls into the range of security and counter-terrorism activity that we engage in.''
Bratton was asked to comment on a request from the NYCLU to file an amicus brief to force more transparency in the NYPD's use of this advanced equipment.
''They're not used to scan people for weapons,'' the Commissioner added. ''The devices we have, the vehicles if you will, are all used lawfully and if the ACLU and others don't think that's the case, we'll see them in court '-- where they'll lose! At this time and the nature of what's going on in the world, that concern of theirs is unfounded.''
Called Z Backscatter Vans (seen above), the X-ray vehicles are primarily used to discover drugs, explosives and human trafficking by U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel.
However, it's not clear at this time how the NYPD uses them, and there are certain health risks to be considered. The vans were first used in 2010, and U.S. Customs prohibited the use of the technology while people were still inside other vehicles. Occupants of a vehicle would be asked to get out before the car is X-rayed.
''People should be informed if military grade X-ray vans are damaging their health with radiation or peering inside their homes or cars,'' NYCLU executive director Donna Liberman said.
The vans' X-ray technology is similar to the whole-body imager technology used in airports before being removed, and each Z Backscatter Vans cost from $729,000 to $825,000 to make.
Website ProPublica filed a suit against the police three years ago, after a journalist's request to see training materials and health tests for the X-ray machines was denied. The website won in January, but the NYPD appealed the ruling, and the information is still not available to the public.
The top image shows how such technology might be used to discover human trafficking.
More from BGR:New rifle shoots drones out of the sky without firing a single bullet
This article was originally published on BGR.com
Caliphate!
Fed employee, service member IDs hacked, given to ISIS
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 14:31
Cybersecurity
Fed employee, service member IDs hacked, given to ISISBy Mark RockwellOct 16, 2015U.S. law enforcement officials want to extradite a Kosovo citizen living in Malaysia who allegedly stole personal information on more than 1,000 U.S. service members and federal employees and gave it to Islamic State militants.
Authorities in Malaysia have detained Ardit Ferizi on a U.S. provisional arrest warrant alleging that he provided material support to the Islamic State and committed computer hacking and identity theft violations, including theft and release of personally identifiable information.
U.S. officials said the hacking charges, coupled with the act of physically targeting individuals using it, were unprecedented.
"This case is a first of its kind, and with these charges, we seek to hold Ferizi accountable for his theft of this information and his role in [Islamic State's] targeting of U.S. government employees," said John Carlin, assistant attorney general for national security.
In a 23-page criminal complaint unsealed on Oct. 15 by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, the FBI alleges that Ferizi, under his Twitter handle and hacking pseudonym Th3Dir3ctorY, hacked into the computer system of an unnamed U.S. company and stole information on 100,000 people, including 1,351 service members and federal employees.
Ferizi is alleged to be the leader of the Kosova Hacker's Security group, which has taken credit for a number of high-profile infiltrations of state and commercial systems. Ferizi had allegedly communicated on Twitter with Islamic State leader Junaid Hussain, a British-born hacker who was killed in a U.S. air strike in August. Hussain, better known by his nom de guerre Abu Hussain Al-Britani, had posted a "kill list" in March purporting to contain personal information on 100 U.S. service members.
On Aug, 11, Hussain posted the new information on the web and tweeted: "NEW: U.S. Military AND Government HACKED by the Islamic State Hacking Division!"
The stolen data was intended to provide the group's supporters in the U.S. and elsewhere with background information for conducting terrorist attacks against those individuals, according to U.S. officials.
The company that owned the infiltrated data was not identified in the complaint. It is not clear whether the server was used by a government or military contractor. The complaint said the compromised server was located in Phoenix and leased exclusively by the company from a hosting service.
About the Author
Mark Rockwell is a staff writer covering acquisition, procurement and homeland security. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.
Clock Kid
The American boy arrested for making a clock meets Sudan's president, an accused war criminal - The Washington Post
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 14:39
The arrest of Ahmed Mohamed, a 14-year-old Texas student, in mid-September for bringing a homemade clock to his high school created a nationwide debate about racism and Islamophobia in the United States. Despite facing a wave of ugly criticism, Ahmed won support from high places '-- President Obama tweeted his support, and the teenager is expected to be a guest at the White House this weekend.
Ahead of that that visit, Ahmed has met with another president. This meeting is a little bit more surprising.
According to the Sudan Tribune, Ahmed met with Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir in Khartoum on Wednesday evening. The Paris-based Web site reports that the teenager told reporters that he was "extremely delighted" to meet Bashir and hoped to return to visit the Sudanese president again ''with a new invention and success.''
At first glance, perhaps Ahmed's journey to Bashir's presidential compound isn't so strange. The teenager has met with a variety of big names over the past few weeks. Besides, his family are Sudanese immigrants: On his Twitter account, Ahmed posted a number of images that described his visit to Sudan as a type of homecoming:
However, Bashir is no ordinary world leader. He has an outstanding arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court, for example, for allegedly orchestrating genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur. The country he leads is under a variety of U.S. sanctions. His government harbored Osama bin Laden for five years in the 1990s. A leaked U.S. diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks even suggested he may have secretly stolen $9 billion in oil money.
To make it even more remarkable, Ahmed's father, Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed, has campaigned against Bashir in not one but two presidential elections. After he was blocked from appearing on the ballot in 2010, the father complained that Bashir had personally blocked his name from the ballot. "I was told that Bashir personally intervened with the [appeals] court to reject my challenge," Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed reportedly told the Sudan Tribune.
He ran for office again this past February, proposing an improvement in relations with the United States and promising to deal with religious extremism. In an interview with the Daily Mail last month, Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed's elder brother Aldean criticized Bashir and said the elections were not fair. "The government said Mohamed came fourth in 2015 but the elections are rigged, the whole international community know that," Aldean said. "Al-Bashir steals all the votes."
There appeared to be little sign of this animosity on Wednesday. The Sudan Tribune reported that Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed attended the meeting and told reporters he hoped that talented young people would ''write a new [chapter in] history for an advanced and developed Sudan."
More on WorldViews
5 insights into the mind of Sudan's President Bashir, an accused war criminal
Why so many African leaders hate the International Criminal Court
Texas ninth grader Ahmed Mohamed was arrested after his homemade clock was mistaken for a bomb. Here's what you need to know. (The Washington Post)
Adam Taylor writes about foreign affairs for The Washington Post. Originally from London, he studied at the University of Manchester and Columbia University.
MIC
McCain blasts Air Force acquisition of GPS -- FCW
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:19
Acquisition
McCain blasts Air Force acquisition of GPSBy Sean LyngaasOct 16, 2015Senior United States Senator John McCain (Arizona-R)
Arizona Republican John McCain blasted an Air Force program to acquire a next-generation operating control system that is central to the service's GPS modernization plans, saying that costs are spiraling out of control.
"[P]oor contractor performance and fundamental weaknesses in DOD acquisition and software development practices now threaten" delivery of the system, known as OCX, said a report released Oct. 16 by the Senate Armed Services Committee chairman.
McCain's report drew on a recent Government Accountability Office study that found that the OCX program will cost $1.1 billion more and take four years longer to complete than planned, "due to poor acquisition decisions and a slow recognition of development problems." The OCX is needed to control the latest generations of GPS satellites in orbit, according to GAO.
The Air Force in February 2010 awarded an $886 million contract to Raytheon to develop the OCX. But the development contract costs have since ballooned to $1.98 billion. The Air Force did not follow acquisition best practices such as doing a preliminary design review before the start of development, according to GAO. Further, "key requirements, particularly for cybersecurity, were not well understood by the Air Force and contractor at the time of [the] contract award," the watchdog said.
Raytheon officials told GAO that they did not understand the extent to which they would be required to implement cybersecurity requirements until three years after beginning OCX development.
The GAO study recommended that Defense Secretary Ashton Carter set up a task force comprising experts from the military services and elsewhere to provide "concrete guidance for addressing the OCX program's underlying problems." In response to that recommendation, Katrina McFarland, the assistant secretary of Defense for acquisition, said that defense officials had already established an independent assessment team.
The Global Positioning Systems Directorate, the Defense Department's acquisition office for GPS equipment, is hosting a public forum on Dec. 9 and 10 to take comments on documents that define specifications for how GPS components communicate.
About the Author
Sean Lyngaas is an FCW staff writer covering defense, cybersecurity and intelligence issues. Follow him on Twitter: @snlyngaas
Drone Nation
Anti-drone rifle shoots down UAVs with radio waves
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:34
Atlantic 'blob' may alter US weather
Teen's family sues over fatal shooting
(C) BattelleWhile the US military continues to develop new and awesome ways of blowing aerial drones to smithereens, not many of these systems can easily be adapted to use in the civilian realm. That's why Battelle has developed the DroneDefender, a shoulder-mounted rifle that knocks UAVs offline with a barrage of radio waves.
"It can help us in numerous settings, from the White House lawn to bases and embassies overseas; from prisons and schools to historic sites,"Alex Morrow, technical director on the project, said in a statement. "It easily and reliably neutralizes the threat." The weapon weighs roughly 10 pounds and can target drones up to 400 meters away. When the trigger is pulled, the gun emits a blast of electromagnetic energy tuned to the most common GPS and ISM frequencies, safely disabling the drone and preventing it from accepting any additional commands from its operator. This is especially helpful if the drone is equipped with an improvised explosive device.
Battelle
Join the conversationMore in TechnologyMore from EngadgetDon't blame your phone for a poor sleep schedule, study findsYou've probably read an article or two about the negative effects of staring at a screen before going to bed (hell, you've probably read one of them while in bed). But, a study recently published in Current Biology finds that we may be blaming our illuminated robots for no reason. Poor robots. Many "screens are bad for sleep" stories carry the assumption that before electricity, smartphones and laptops, people slept longer -- but it's difficult to pin down how long our ancestors spent in dream-land, The Economist says. To tackle this issue, two researchers observed three groups living pre-industrial lives: the Hadza of northern Tanzania, the Ju/'hoansi San of South Africa's Kalahari Desert and the Tsiman(C) in Bolivia. After 1,165 days collecting data, researchers found the average sleep time among these groups was 6.5 hours a night. In industrial societies, the average is 7.5 hours per night, The Economist writes. So, scroll away, sleepy readers. Until the next study, at least. The Economist
EngadgetA heat gun, suction cup, razor and bravery yields a clear Galaxy Note 5Remember when the best way to make your gadget look more futuristic and all-powerful was to make it clear? Reddit user Skarface08 does. That's why he or she took a heat gun and suction cup to the back of a Samsung Galaxy Note 5 to pull its glass back off and then used a razor to remove the colored inside. Boom: clear glass view into the internals of your phone. Of course, this will absolutely void the warranty of your expensive device, so think twice (or three times even) before taking this on yourself. I certainly don't have the steady hands likely needed to make this viable -- but if you do, more power to you. [Image credit: Skarface08/Reddit ] Reddit
EngadgetSomeone in China has hacked the Woods Hole InstituteThe Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, one of America's premiere scientific research centers, was reportedly hacked last June by unidentified forces operating in China. According to a staff letter sent by WHOI President and Director Mark Abbott this week, the institute has so far found that only emails and commercial data have been tampered with. While the WHOI does a lot of classified research for the US Navy, an institute spokesman points out that sensitive data is stored on a network separate from the one that was attacked. "The attack was similar to those that have been experienced by many federal agencies, defense contractors and other businesses developing advanced technologies. The investigation of the attack is ongoing, however, the investigation indicates the intent was not to obtain financial or personal identity information," Abbott's letter read. This hack comes after the US threatened sanctions against China over the Asian nation's repeated intrusions and cyber attacks against American corporations, universities and government agencies. Chinese President Xi Jinping promised to curtail such activities during his recent state visit and the Chinese government has even begun assisting in US investigations against its hackers. However, China has been pushing hard in recent years to increase its status as a maritime power -- going so far as to build its own islands in the South China Sea. Should this attack be shown to have originated from the Chinese government itself (or, at least, state-sponsored hackers), the diplomatic fallout could be enormous. But before the US government goes pointing fingers, we'll first have to wait for the WHOI's internal investigation, which is being conducted by cybersecurity firm Mandiant, to run its course. NBC News
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Ministry of Truth
Donald Trump's 'Saturday Night Live' Gig May Invoke Equal Time Rule | Variety
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 16:06
When Donald Trump hosts ''Saturday Night Live'' on Nov. 7, rival campaigns may very well be watching not only what he says but how long he spends in the spotlight.
That's because of the so-called equal time rule, an often misunderstood FCC regulation that requires that a station that gives free airtime to one candidate offer the same opportunity for exposure to rival qualified candidates.
The rule has loomed over election campaigns enough for stations to forgo airing Arnold Schwarzenegger movies as he ran for governor of California in 2003 or, even more famously, ''Bedtime for Bonzo'' when Ronald Reagan waged his presidential bid in 1980.
When Hillary Clinton appeared on ''Saturday Night Live'' on Oct. 3, NBC's Jean Dietze, executive vice president of affiliate relations, sent a notice to station general managers letting them know that her appearance clocked in at 3 minutes and 12 seconds and asking them to let affiliate relations ''know promptly if your station receives a demand for equal time from any of the other candidates.'' Apparently none did.
But the Trump appearance may be a whole different story. He's hosting ''Saturday Night Live,'' not making a cameo appearance.
''Unlike Hillary making a very short one-sketch appearance, this candidate is going to be hosting and on throughout the program. To me that has kind of crossed the Maginot Line in terms of triggering'' the equal time rule, said Meredith McGehee, policy director at the Campaign Legal Center.
She adds, ''The amount of time he will be on screen will be substantively different than a cameo. And given the dynamics of the race, where they are trying to humanize him and show that he is not just a bloviator, it is incredibly politically valuable to him.''
An NBC spokeswoman did not return requests for comment.
Yet just because Trump appears, even in extended form, doesn't mean that ''SNL'' will have to extend an invite to all the other GOP candidates to host.
There are intricacies to the equal time rule, officially known as the ''equal opportunities'' rule.
For one thing, it is not the same as the fairness doctrine. That was a policy that stations present controversial topics with balanced points of view. The doctrine was abolished in 1987 and officially taken off the FCC's books in 2011.
What's more, the FCC does not police the airwaves. A rival campaign has to request equal time. And candidates who seek it have to show that they have a legitimate campaign in the state of an affiliate where a request is made. (Requests for equal time have to be made to the local station, not the network).
They also have seven days after a notice is posted of a candidate's appearance to make an equal-time request.
Even then, NBC's affiliates could seek an exemption. The equal-time rules make exceptions for newscasts, news interviews, documentaries and current events '-- and the FCC in recent years has given some leeway to late-night talk shows in this regard.
When California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appeared on ''The Tonight Show with Jay Leno'' during his re-election campaign in 2006, his Democratic challenger, Phil Angelides, asked for equal time, but was rebuffed. The reasoning was that such shows presented a bonafide news interview, even if the news was often presented in the form of satire.
''Saturday Night Live'' is not an interview show, but a sketch comedy show that frequently skewers current events, so the bar may be a tad higher for it to earn the exemption.
NBC appears to be banking that ratings for Trump's appearance will make the risk of equal time requests worth it, if they happen at all. Making a request also risks a rival campaign coming across as a bit desperate.
But this presidential election is hardly routine. More than any other candidate in recent memory, Trump is reaping the benefits of free media. Even if he will have to be the butt of jokes on ''Saturday Night Live,'' he'll still have the spotlight.
Big Pharma
Another Controversy for the "Female Viagra"? - Scientific American
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 16:52
The new libido pill will likely lure users for whom it was not approved: women taking antidepressants
By Kaitlin Bell Barnett| October 17, 2015Source: Sprout Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Addyi, the first prescription medication approved to boost female libido, hits the market today. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved marketing the drug to premenopausal women whose low libido doesn't stem from a medical or psychiatric condition, medication or other substances, but from a lack of desire characterized as hypoactive sexual desire disorder, or HSDD.
The so-called ''female Viagra'''--something of a misnomer because Addyi does not affect arousal as Viagra does but rather increases libido'--was mired in controversy prior to its approval, in large part because clinical studies did not show dramatic improvements in sexual desire and used measures that many experts criticized as inadequate. Despite such concerns, Addyi's drugmaker, Sprout Pharmaceuticals, was purchased by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International for $1 billion once the drug received approval.
With about 10 percent of women suffering from HSDD, Valeant projects a healthy market for this once-a-day pill, and that does not include a large group of women who are likely to be prescribed the drug for another kind of desire problem: the low libido that is a common side effect of antidepressants.
Although Addyi has not been approved by the FDA for antidepressant-induced libido problems, once a drug hits the market, doctors can prescribe it off-label for other uses other than its approved indication. Nearly one in five women in the U.S. takes an antidepressant, and as many as 70 percent report dampened sexual desire as a result.
Selective serotonin (SSRI) and certain serotonin and noradrenaline (SNRI) reuptake inhibitor antidepressants are particularly likely to cause sexual dysfunction. The exact mechanisms are not well understood but likely stem from boosting serotonin activity in the brain. Serotonin is thought to dampen libido and arousal, and also to inhibit two other neurotransmitters, norepinephrine and dopamine, that promote sexual function. Doctors have tried various strategies, including reducing dosages, prescribing ''drug holidays,'' and adding in other antidepressants like Wellbutrin or drugs like Ritalin, to counteract these sexual side effects, but have not found a reliable antidote. ''There's nothing really phenomenal out there to treat SSRI-induced dysfunction,'' says Christina Dording, a psychiatrist who directs sexual behavior studies at Massachusetts General Hospital's depression research division. ''Clinically we use a variety of different strategies but none of them are perfect.''
Dording and many colleagues point out that no one knows whether Addyi would be effective for women whose low libido stems from antidepressants. In theory, Addyi might work, says Anita Clayton, a University of Virginia psychiatrist who is an expert in antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction, because it inhibits the sex-dampening effects of serotonin.
In clinical trials measuring the drug's effectiveness the manufacturer excluded subjects who were taking an antidepressant or other drugs likely to harm sexual functioning.
Despite protocols, a few women in those efficacy studies did take an antidepressant. But because the study was not designed to measure how effective Addyi was for antidepressant users or for women whose low libido stemmed from antidepressant use, any data gleaned for would be ''pretty much uninterpretable,'' says Leonard Derogatis, a professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University who has advised the drug's manufacturer for a decade and who conducted many of the clinical trials. Representatives from the manufacturer, Sprout, declined to comment.
Cherry-picking patients to minimize confounding variables is a common strategy in drug trials but it doesn't reflect the reality of clinical practice, says Rosemary Basson, director of the sexual medicine program at the University of British Columbia. Because many women with HSDD also have mood disorders and take an antidepressant, it is difficult to tease out whether a woman's libido problems stem from her depression or other mood disorder, or from her antidepressants, relationship or other issues or from HSDD'--itself a controversial diagnosis. ''What's very important is to document the level of sexual function prior to treatment with the antidepressant,'' says Shari Lusskin, psychiatrist and professor at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City who specializes in women's mental health. Unfortunately, she notes, ''that's not something that's routinely done.''
The drug's original developer, Boehringer Ingelheim, which later sold Addyi to Sprout, did conduct a 2010 study of depressed women with low libido to gauge whether it was safe to take Addyi with an antidepressant. The data, says Clayton, who helped plan the study, showed Addyi didn't worsen anxiety or depression, although combining the drugs slightly increased the risk of some side effects including insomnia and dizziness.
Basson, Dording and others say they would hold off on prescribing Addyi to their patients with antidepressant-induced low libido until there is promising data to support its use'--especially because even in women with HSDD, libido improvement was not dramatic and there was a risk of serious side effects like fainting and very low blood pressure, especially when combined with alcohol.
But not all doctors will be so cautious. ''It will be used off-label'--absolutely,'' says Lusskin, who also says she would not do so herself in the absence of promising data for this subgroup. ''People will ask for it, and doctors will prescribe it. It's really the doctor's responsibility to tell patients whether something is appropriate for them or not, but I'm afraid doctors are often willing to do what patients ask.''
Sprout would not comment on whether they plan to seek additional marketing approval to treat antidepressant-induced low libido, and the new parent company, Valeant, did not respond to requests for comment. But Derogatis and Clayton, who both served as scientific advisors to the manufacturer, think it might make sense to seek additional approvals, given the large number of women suffering from antidepressant-induced low libido and the dearth of truly effective treatment.
''I know [Sprout] was considering it,'' Derogatis says, although he doesn't know whether Valeant feels the same way. ''It's a natural to start looking at what marketing population would be beneficial. And depressed women [with antidepressant-induced low libido] jump right out.''
see also:
The Associated Press: Pharmaceuticals found in drinking water, affecting wildlife and maybe humans
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:14
HOME > DAY 1> PHARMAWATER IBy JEFF DONN, MARTHA MENDOZA and JUSTIN PRITCHARDAssociated Press WritersA vast array of pharmaceuticals including antibiotics, anti-convulsants, mood stabilizers and sex hormones have been found in the drinking water supplies of at least 41 million Americans, an Associated Press investigation shows. To be sure, the concentrations of these pharmaceuticals are tiny, measured in quantities of parts per billion or trillion, far below the levels of a medical dose. Also, utilities insist their water is safe. But the presence of so many prescription drugs and over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen in so much of our drinking water is heightening worries among scientists of long-term consequences to human health. In the course of a five-month inquiry, the AP discovered that drugs have been detected in the drinking water supplies of 24 major metropolitan areas from Southern California to Northern New Jersey, from Detroit to Louisville, Ky. Water providers rarely disclose results of pharmaceutical screenings, unless pressed, the AP found. For example, the head of a group representing major California suppliers said the public "doesn't know how to interpret the information" and might be unduly alarmed. How do the drugs get into the water? People take pills. Their bodies absorb some of the medication, but the rest of it passes through and is flushed down the toilet. The wastewater is treated before it is discharged into reservoirs, rivers or lakes. Then, some of the water is cleansed again at drinking water treatment plants and piped to consumers. But most treatments do not remove all drug residue. And while researchers do not yet understand the exact risks from decades of persistent exposure to random combinations of low levels of pharmaceuticals, recent studies which have gone virtually unnoticed by the general public have found alarming effects on human cells and wildlife. "We recognize it is a growing concern and we're taking it very seriously," said Benjamin H. Grumbles, assistant administrator for water at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Members of the AP National Investigative Team reviewed hundreds of scientific reports, analyzed federal drinking water databases, visited environmental study sites and treatment plants and interviewed more than 230 officials, academics and scientists. They also surveyed the nation's 50 largest cities and a dozen other major water providers, as well as smaller community water providers in all 50 states. Here are some of the key test results obtained by the AP: _Officials in Philadelphia said testing there discovered 56 pharmaceuticals or byproducts in treated drinking water, including medicines for pain, infection, high cholesterol, asthma, epilepsy, mental illness and heart problems. Sixty-three pharmaceuticals or byproducts were found in the city's watersheds. _Anti-epileptic and anti-anxiety medications were detected in a portion of the treated drinking water for 18.5 million people in Southern California. _Researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey analyzed a Passaic Valley Water Commission drinking water treatment plant, which serves 850,000 people in Northern New Jersey, and found a metabolized angina medicine and the mood-stabilizing carbamazepine in drinking water. _A sex hormone was detected in San Francisco's drinking water. _The drinking water for Washington, D.C., and surrounding areas tested positive for six pharmaceuticals. _Three medications, including an antibiotic, were found in drinking water supplied to Tucson, Ariz. The situation is undoubtedly worse than suggested by the positive test results in the major population centers documented by the AP. The federal government doesn't require any testing and hasn't set safety limits for drugs in water. Of the 62 major water providers contacted, the drinking water for only 28 was tested. Among the 34 that haven't: Houston, Chicago, Miami, Baltimore, Phoenix, Boston and New York City's Department of Environmental Protection, which delivers water to 9 million people. Some providers screen only for one or two pharmaceuticals, leaving open the possibility that others are present. The AP's investigation also indicates that watersheds, the natural sources of most of the nation's water supply, also are contaminated. Tests were conducted in the watersheds of 35 of the 62 major providers surveyed by the AP, and pharmaceuticals were detected in 28. Yet officials in six of those 28 metropolitan areas said they did not go on to test their drinking water Fairfax, Va.; Montgomery County in Maryland; Omaha, Neb.; Oklahoma City; Santa Clara, Calif., and New York City. The New York state health department and the USGS tested the source of the city's water, upstate. They found trace concentrations of heart medicine, infection fighters, estrogen, anti-convulsants, a mood stabilizer and a tranquilizer. City water officials declined repeated requests for an interview. In a statement, they insisted that "New York City's drinking water continues to meet all federal and state regulations regarding drinking water quality in the watershed and the distribution system" regulations that do not address trace pharmaceuticals. In several cases, officials at municipal or regional water providers told the AP that pharmaceuticals had not been detected, but the AP obtained the results of tests conducted by independent researchers that showed otherwise. For example, water department officials in New Orleans said their water had not been tested for pharmaceuticals, but a Tulane University researcher and his students have published a study that found the pain reliever naproxen, the sex hormone estrone and the anti-cholesterol drug byproduct clofibric acid in treated drinking water. Of the 28 major metropolitan areas where tests were performed on drinking water supplies, only Albuquerque; Austin, Texas; and Virginia Beach, Va.; said tests were negative. The drinking water in Dallas has been tested, but officials are awaiting results. Arlington, Texas, acknowledged that traces of a pharmaceutical were detected in its drinking water but cited post-9/11 security concerns in refusing to identify the drug. The AP also contacted 52 small water providers one in each state, and two each in Missouri and Texas that serve communities with populations around 25,000. All but one said their drinking water had not been screened for pharmaceuticals; officials in Emporia, Kan., refused to answer AP's questions, also citing post-9/11 issues. Rural consumers who draw water from their own wells aren't in the clear either, experts say. The Stroud Water Research Center, in Avondale, Pa., has measured water samples from New York City's upstate watershed for caffeine, a common contaminant that scientists often look for as a possible signal for the presence of other pharmaceuticals. Though more caffeine was detected at suburban sites, researcher Anthony Aufdenkampe was struck by the relatively high levels even in less populated areas. He suspects it escapes from failed septic tanks, maybe with other drugs. "Septic systems are essentially small treatment plants that are essentially unmanaged and therefore tend to fail," Aufdenkampe said. Even users of bottled water and home filtration systems don't necessarily avoid exposure. Bottlers, some of which simply repackage tap water, do not typically treat or test for pharmaceuticals, according to the industry's main trade group. The same goes for the makers of home filtration systems. Contamination is not confined to the United States. More than 100 different pharmaceuticals have been detected in lakes, rivers, reservoirs and streams throughout the world. Studies have detected pharmaceuticals in waters throughout Asia, Australia, Canada and Europe even in Swiss lakes and the North Sea. For example, in Canada, a study of 20 Ontario drinking water treatment plants by a national research institute found nine different drugs in water samples. Japanese health officials in December called for human health impact studies after detecting prescription drugs in drinking water at seven different sites. In the United States, the problem isn't confined to surface waters. Pharmaceuticals also permeate aquifers deep underground, source of 40 percent of the nation's water supply. Federal scientists who drew water in 24 states from aquifers near contaminant sources such as landfills and animal feed lots found minuscule levels of hormones, antibiotics and other drugs. Perhaps it's because Americans have been taking drugs and flushing them unmetabolized or unused in growing amounts. Over the past five years, the number of U.S. prescriptions rose 12 percent to a record 3.7 billion, while nonprescription drug purchases held steady around 3.3 billion, according to IMS Health and The Nielsen Co. "People think that if they take a medication, their body absorbs it and it disappears, but of course that's not the case," said EPA scientist Christian Daughton, one of the first to draw attention to the issue of pharmaceuticals in water in the United States. Some drugs, including widely used cholesterol fighters, tranquilizers and anti-epileptic medications, resist modern drinking water and wastewater treatment processes. Plus, the EPA says there are no sewage treatment systems specifically engineered to remove pharmaceuticals. One technology, reverse osmosis, removes virtually all pharmaceutical contaminants but is very expensive for large-scale use and leaves several gallons of polluted water for every one that is made drinkable. Another issue: There's evidence that adding chlorine, a common process in conventional drinking water treatment plants, makes some pharmaceuticals more toxic. Human waste isn't the only source of contamination. Cattle, for example, are given ear implants that provide a slow release of trenbolone, an anabolic steroid used by some bodybuilders, which causes cattle to bulk up. But not all the trenbolone circulating in a steer is metabolized. A German study showed 10 percent of the steroid passed right through the animals. Water sampled downstream of a Nebraska feedlot had steroid levels four times as high as the water taken upstream. Male fathead minnows living in that downstream area had low testosterone levels and small heads. Other veterinary drugs also play a role. Pets are now treated for arthritis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, allergies, dementia, and even obesity sometimes with the same drugs as humans. The inflation-adjusted value of veterinary drugs rose by 8 percent, to $5.2 billion, over the past five years, according to an analysis of data from the Animal Health Institute. Ask the pharmaceutical industry whether the contamination of water supplies is a problem, and officials will tell you no. "Based on what we now know, I would say we find there's little or no risk from pharmaceuticals in the environment to human health," said microbiologist Thomas White, a consultant for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America. But at a conference last summer, Mary Buzby director of environmental technology for drug maker Merck & Co. Inc. said: "There's no doubt about it, pharmaceuticals are being detected in the environment and there is genuine concern that these compounds, in the small concentrations that they're at, could be causing impacts to human health or to aquatic organisms." Recent laboratory research has found that small amounts of medication have affected human embryonic kidney cells, human blood cells and human breast cancer cells. The cancer cells proliferated too quickly; the kidney cells grew too slowly; and the blood cells showed biological activity associated with inflammation. Also, pharmaceuticals in waterways are damaging wildlife across the nation and around the globe, research shows. Notably, male fish are being feminized, creating egg yolk proteins, a process usually restricted to females. Pharmaceuticals also are affecting sentinel species at the foundation of the pyramid of life such as earth worms in the wild and zooplankton in the laboratory, studies show. Some scientists stress that the research is extremely limited, and there are too many unknowns. They say, though, that the documented health problems in wildlife are disconcerting. "It brings a question to people's minds that if the fish were affected ... might there be a potential problem for humans?" EPA research biologist Vickie Wilson told the AP. "It could be that the fish are just exquisitely sensitive because of their physiology or something. We haven't gotten far enough along." With limited research funds, said Shane Snyder, research and development project manager at the Southern Nevada Water Authority, a greater emphasis should be put on studying the effects of drugs in water. "I think it's a shame that so much money is going into monitoring to figure out if these things are out there, and so little is being spent on human health," said Snyder. "They need to just accept that these things are everywhere every chemical and pharmaceutical could be there. It's time for the EPA to step up to the plate and make a statement about the need to study effects, both human and environmental." To the degree that the EPA is focused on the issue, it appears to be looking at detection. Grumbles acknowledged that just late last year the agency developed three new methods to "detect and quantify pharmaceuticals" in wastewater. "We realize that we have a limited amount of data on the concentrations," he said. "We're going to be able to learn a lot more." While Grumbles said the EPA had analyzed 287 pharmaceuticals for possible inclusion on a draft list of candidates for regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, he said only one, nitroglycerin, was on the list. Nitroglycerin can be used as a drug for heart problems, but the key reason it's being considered is its widespread use in making explosives. So much is unknown. Many independent scientists are skeptical that trace concentrations will ultimately prove to be harmful to humans. Confidence about human safety is based largely on studies that poison lab animals with much higher amounts. There's growing concern in the scientific community, meanwhile, that certain drugs or combinations of drugs may harm humans over decades because water, unlike most specific foods, is consumed in sizable amounts every day. Our bodies may shrug off a relatively big one-time dose, yet suffer from a smaller amount delivered continuously over a half century, perhaps subtly stirring allergies or nerve damage. Pregnant women, the elderly and the very ill might be more sensitive. Many concerns about chronic low-level exposure focus on certain drug classes: chemotherapy that can act as a powerful poison; hormones that can hamper reproduction or development; medicines for depression and epilepsy that can damage the brain or change behavior; antibiotics that can allow human germs to mutate into more dangerous forms; pain relievers and blood-pressure diuretics. For several decades, federal environmental officials and nonprofit watchdog environmental groups have focused on regulated contaminants pesticides, lead, PCBs which are present in higher concentrations and clearly pose a health risk. However, some experts say medications may pose a unique danger because, unlike most pollutants, they were crafted to act on the human body. "These are chemicals that are designed to have very specific effects at very low concentrations. That's what pharmaceuticals do. So when they get out to the environment, it should not be a shock to people that they have effects," says zoologist John Sumpter at Brunel University in London, who has studied trace hormones, heart medicine and other drugs. And while drugs are tested to be safe for humans, the timeframe is usually over a matter of months, not a lifetime. Pharmaceuticals also can produce side effects and interact with other drugs at normal medical doses. That's why aside from therapeutic doses of fluoride injected into potable water supplies pharmaceuticals are prescribed to people who need them, not delivered to everyone in their drinking water. "We know we are being exposed to other people's drugs through our drinking water, and that can't be good," says Dr. David Carpenter, who directs the Institute for Health and the Environment of the State University of New York at Albany. ____ The AP National Investigative Team can be reached at investigate@ap.org
NA-Tech News
Theranos' Scandal Exposes the Problem With Tech's Hype Cycle | WIRED
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 13:29
Theranos, a company that makes low-cost blood tests, has been celebrated as the inventor of the next major medical breakthrough, and its founder, Elizabeth Holmes, has been hailed as the next Steve Jobs. But in an expose published today, The Wall Street Journal portrays Theranos as a company that is not only grossly under-delivering on its promise, but is also working hard to hide its problems.
A months-long investigation by the Journal found that, for the bulk of its blood tests, Theranos has not actually been using its own technology, which the company has claimed are capable of running tests with only a few drops of blood. Instead, it's been relying on traditional machines from companies like Siemens. What's more, the article alleges that in proficiency tests, Theranos's own Edison machines have produced radically different results than traditional machines have, and internal emails reveal the company may have tried to prevent those inconsistencies from seeing the light of day.
The Journal's claims, many of which Theranos has contested, are damning, portraying Theranos as an Oz-like company that looms large in public consciousness but turns out to have little going on behind the facade. At the same time, the story also exposes a deeper problem with the way Silicon Valley tries to spin hype into startup gold.
It's hardly unusual for a startup to over-hype its potential in its early days. Mark Zuckerberg was crowing about connecting every person in the world long before that claim seemed plausible. Uber executives have been talking about taking over the taxi industry for years. Even Tinder sometimes bills itself as a global social network, not just a dating app. These grandiose promises are table stakes in the tech industry, a requirement for luring both investors and early users. And typically, they're harmless. After all, who really gets hurt when, say, Ello fails to catch on?
Grandiose promises are table stakes in the tech industry, a requirement for luring both investors and early users.
But Theranos is a cautionary tale of what happens when that mentality creeps into sectors other than software, such as medicine. As one Theranos patient quoted by the Journal put it, ''trial and error on people, that's not OK.'' It's not that any of this is done maliciously. It's just that the tech industry wants its heroes. It wants to find the next Steve Jobs. It wants to be responsible for discovering not just the next big chat app, but the next big idea that will change the world. Once the industry finds a protagonist who seems to fit that narrative, the story can take on a life of its own, separate from the more mundane reality.
Moving Too FastHolmes started Theranos in her dorm room, and, as the oft-told story goes, she kept the company in stealth mode for 10 years, refusing to say much about its methodology or publish its findings in peer-reviewed journals. And yet, throughout that time, tech investors like Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Larry Ellison continued pouring money into the company. To date, the company has raised $400 million at a $9 billion valuation, making Holmes a celebrity in tech circles and on the conference circuit (WIRED featured Holmes in its March 2014 issue).
That the tech world would want to apply the 'move fast and break things' motto to medicine as well as software makes sense.
Fast growth and overexposure can be tricky for any young company to navigate. But when that company dictates people's health decisions, it can be downright dangerous. So much more is at stake. That's why these medical tech and biotech companies are among the toughest to start. Instead of raising the money to prove the concept, as so often happens in the frothy tech industry, inventors of medical technology are tasked with proving their worth first. ''In the mainstream medical diagnostics industry, there's a pretty high standard in terms of investment,'' says Dr. Muneesh Tewari, an associate professor in the University of Michigan's department of hematology and oncology. ''It's very uncommon to reach the size of Theranos without substantial disclosure and validation of results of the diagnostic performance.''
There's an argument to be made, of course, that this process isn't perfect, either. It means breakthrough treatments can take far too long to reach the mainstream and that large pharmaceutical companies with money to spend get to dictate which technologies are worth the investment. That the tech world would want to apply the ''move fast and break things'' motto to medicine as well as software makes sense. But there's an equal and opposite argument to be made: not every industry can or should move fast.
Caught in the CycleTheranos isn't the first scientific company get caught up in the tech hype cycle long before it was ready. The DNA-testing-by-mail service 23andMe was celebrated in tech circles, before the FDA ordered it to stop marketing its health-related gene analyses. The FDA argued that 23andMe's technology hadn't gone through the proper approvals, and, as a result, couldn't advertise its tests to customers as indicators of health issues.
The good news for 23andMe, and perhaps even for Theranos, is that 23andMe seems to have survived the backlash. Unable to market its tests for health purposes, the company began using them for research, all while appealing to the FDA to reconsider. Now, 23andMe has announced a new $115 million round of funding, and at least one of its health tests has received FDA approval.
Theranos, no doubt, will use its substantial backing to fight the claims made by The Wall Street Journal, and work to convince the public and regulators that its technology, while still in its infancy, is more than just vaporware.
That's the good thing about raising $400 million. It can buy you a heckuva legal team.
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Theranos Responds To Allegations Made In WSJ Expos(C) - Fortune
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 14:53
Speaking as someone who, in a June 2014 cover story, helped bring the blood diagnostic company Theranos and its 31-year-old founder Elizabeth Holmes to prominence, I found this morning's 3700-word, front-page, Wall Street Journal article by John Carreyrou deeply disturbing.
As I mentioned in my original story, private investors have invested at least $400 million in the ostensibly disruptive company, and have given it a $9 billion valuation. Since then, Holmes has been featured on the cover of Forbes, been profiled in The New Yorker, been interviewed by Charlie Rose, and she has been given a host of awards and honors'--including being named to the Harvard Medical School Board of Fellows. All of that has been called into question by the Wall Street Journal's allegations.
In my view, the article's key revelations'--assuming they are true, which Theranos vociferously, but only obliquely, denies'--are the following.
The company ''does the vast majority of its tests with traditional machines bought from companies like Siemens AG.'' Obviously, that doesn't sound very disruptive.As of December 2014, at least, the company performed only about 15 to 20 of the more than 200 tests it lists on its menu by using the method for which it is famous: taking a few drops of blood by finger-stick and then analyzing that tiny sample in a compact, proprietary device (which I have described here).Another 60 or so of the tests on the menu were then being performed by finger stick, according to the Journal's sources, but then diluted into larger samples so that they could be read by conventional, third-party manufactured analyzing machines. The article quotes an expert saying that such dilution is disfavored, and can generate less reliable results.The remaining 130-plus tests on the menu were performed by venipuncture (i.e, an old-fashioned syringe in the crook of the arm)'--albeit using a smaller than ordinary needle which draws a smaller than ordinary sample '--and then analyzed by conventional machines manufactured by third parties.In addition, in the most inflammatory allegation of all, the paper alleges that in early 2014 company president Sunny Balwani instructed employees to engage in what might amount to a way to cheat on proficiency tests that the company must pass to maintain its lab certifications. Relying in part on contemporaneous emails, the article alleges that Balwani told employees to analyze the proficiency test sample on a conventional, third-party-manufactured machine, even though the company was, at the time, routinely performing those diagnostic tests with its own proprietary system. The switch was made, the article suggests, because the third-party machines generated better results.
The article also questions the reliability of Theranos's tests though, in fairness, the examples given are anecdotal. (Theranos, as I have previously reported, is seeking FDA approval for some 130 of its proprietary tests, and has already received one such approval. The approval granted appears to accept the basic validity of her platform, at least as to that test.)
In a response posted this morning, the company says the story is ''factually and scientifically erroneous and grounded in baseless assertions by inexperienced and disgruntled former employees and industry incumbents. . . . The sources relied on in the article today were never in a position to understand Theranos' technology and know nothing about the processes currently employed by the company. We are disappointed that . . . this reporter relied only on the views of four 'anonymous' disgruntled former employees, competitors and their allies, instead of reaching out to many of the scientific, health care and business leaders who have actually seen, tested, used and examined our breakthrough technologies.''
On the surface, it reads like a powerful denial. But on a point-by-point basis, Theranos's statement says remarkably little.
Earlier this morning, Theranos's general counsel Heather King told me categorically: ''All our finger-stick tests are run on our own proprietary system.'' But she couldn't stay on the line, so I emailed her a series of specific questions. (CEO Holmes herself was unavailable, according to King. She was in an all-day meeting of the Harvard Medical School Board of Fellows. There would be only a 30-minute break, King said, during which Holmes will tape a Q&A with Jim Cramer for CNBC's Mad Money which will air at 6 p.m. Eastern Time.)
Here is an edited version of her responses (with the order of the questions changed for clarity).
Q. Are most of the tests listed on your menu done by venipuncture?
A. Yes, and that was part of adding full reference lab capability earlier in 2015 (which you and I have discussed). [Last May, Theranos informed me that the company had begun performing a class of rare, sophisticated tests, known as ''esoterics,'' which independent labs ordinarily send to specialized ''reference'' labs. These were still performed by venipuncture, the company acknowledged to me at that time.]
Q. Are most of the tests you perform in practice (i.e., the number that are most often requested, by volume) done by venipuncture?
A. It varies, but currently yes.
Q. Why don't you indicate on the menu which tests are done by venipuncture and which by finger stick?
A. The list changes from time to time, especially as Theranos continues to add more tests to its proprietary devices. In addition, whether a guest will have venipuncture or finger stick will depend on the panel of tests that a guest orders. For example, if a guest orders a test that Theranos performs on a finger stick in addition to one that is performed on venous draw, Theranos will just take a venous draw.
Q. As I understand it, you have two labs: a high-complexity lab in Newark, Calif., and a medium-complexity lab in Scottsdale, Ariz. You have acknowledged to me that the Arizona lab contains only analyzing machines manufactured by third parties'--not your own devices. While you previously told me that you use venipuncture for ''esoteric'' tests, isn't it fair to say that the tests being performed in the Scottsdale lab are not just ''esoteric''? Wouldn't esoteric tests be performed at your high-complexity lab? And wouldn't esoteric tests be the sort of thing for which there wouldn't exist standard-issue machines to run them on?
A. No, that's not right. What we mean by ''reference'' or ''esoteric'' tests are tests that are not commonly ordered'.... Some of these may be high-complexity tests, but the point is that there are standard-issue, third-party machines to run them on, which is what Theranos does. Theranos's proprietary devices are capable of performing the overwhelming majority, if not all, of the tests which Theranos currently performs for venous draws on conventional machines . . . and Theranos is committed to continuing to add more tests on to its proprietary devices over time.
Q. Were'--and are'--finger-stick draws ever diluted in order to use them with third-party machinery?
A. Theranos does not dilute samples in the way that the Journal described. (It is worth noting that dilution is common practice in the industry'--conventional machines actually have dilution instructions written on the machines themselves.''
Q. Were'--and are'--venipuncture tests (with the smaller needles) ever diluted to use them with third-party machinery.
A. Venipuncture tests are run exactly to manufacturer's specifications. As noted above, conventional machines actually have dilution instructions written on the machines themselves.
Q. The most damaging accusation was that Sunny Balwani told employees to perform proficiency tests using third-party machinery at a time when the lab was performing those same tests using its proprietary system. Was that accusation true and, if so, what was the justification?
A. The accusation reflects the Journal's misunderstanding of Theranos's proficiency-testing process . . . The way Theranos performs its [proficiency testing] though AAP is the best process and common practice in the lab industry. The most important thing is that Theranos has always been upfront and transparent with regulators and proficiency testing providers about its process and the Company abides by all applicable . . . regulations and industry guidelines. . . . Theranos has never heard from any regulator that its proficiency-testing process is wrong. The Journal is trying to sensationalize a technical issue that the Journal refused to spend time to understand.
Q. Is it true that you deleted certain claims from your web site during the Journal's reporting?
A. The Journal's reporting process was very long (months) and we change our web site from time to time, as would be expected. Theranos changed the web site only to emphasize that, regardless of whether Theranos takes a venous sample or a finger-stick draw, our blood draws are smaller and less painful, which is an improvement for the patient experience overall. It has never been a secret that we use venous draws in addition to finger sticks, and we simply wanted to emphasize that it is better no matter whether it is a few drops or a small vial.
Although there are clearly irreconcilable conflicts between the company's account and the Journal's, there are also some points that seem clear.
When I did my June 2014 story, a key slogan '--once prominently displayed in posters and on the company web site, but which I can no longer find there'--was: ''One drop changes everything,'' with a tiny micro-vial of blood shown standing on the tip of a finger. This referred to the primacy of the finger stick to Theranos's business model at that juncture.
Today the company appears to be dialing back. The closest equivalent slogan now appears to be: ''Smaller samples. Smaller needles. Better experience.'' The text beneath reads: ''Our tests, including venous draws, require smaller samples than traditional labs. We also use much smaller needles. Ones designed specifically for collecting venous draws from children. So whether it's a few drops collected with a finger stick, or the smallest venous draw sample possible, Theranos tests mean less blood, an easier process, and a clear difference.''
Well, that could be. And if Theranos can continue to sell its tests as inexpensively as Holmes has pledged to'--never charging more than half the Medicare reimbursement rate'--it may still have a business. But it's hard to see how it can make money charging so little if it's still performing the majority of its tests on the same machines Quest Diagnostics DGX and LabCorp LH have always used.
And even if Theranos's tests are cheaper, more is required. The accuracy of lab tests are a matter of life and death. Patients and physicians are entitled to feel absolute confidence that Theranos's tests are as reliable as the competition's, and that the company's highest officials are being as straightforward and transparent with them as possible.
At the moment, I'll leave it to the reader whether Theranos is earning that confidence.
Correction: In an earlier version of this story I misstated the amount that had been invested in Theranos at the time of my June 2014 story about the company. The correct number was $400 million.
Hot Startup Theranos Dials Back Lab Tests at FDA's Behest - WSJ
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 13:32
Under pressure from regulators, laboratory firm Theranos Inc. has stopped collecting tiny vials of blood drawn from finger pricks for all but one of its tests, according to a person familiar with the matter, backing away from a method the company has touted as it rose to become one of Silicon Valley's hottest startups.
The move is a setback to the Palo Alto, Calif., company's ambition to revolutionize the blood-testing industry. As a result of the halt, Theranos is operating more like a traditional lab that draws blood...
VIDEO-CLIPS-DOCS
VIDEO-Call to action might be more effective if Bill Nye would stop denying the usefulness of nuclear energy - Atomic Insights
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:52
National Geographic Explorer '-- now part of the Rupert Murdock media empire '-- published the below clips of Bill Nye, the bow-tied science guy, beseeching ''deniers'' to stop denying so that we can all get to work.
He calls for an immediate halt to the use of fossil fuels and their replacement with ''renewable energy'' which helps to illustrate his lack of contact with reality.
Nye is a nuclear energy skeptic whose skepticism often borders on denial of the utility of nuclear energy as a tool for substantially reducing '-- not eliminating '-- fossil fuel consumption for a host of important reasons. Among those reasons is the fact that nuclear fission produces heat without releasing CO2.
Even when the full life cycle is taken into account, using our current primitive once-through fuel cycle, nuclear power plants produce about as much CO2 per unit of useful power as windmills and several times less than solar PV systems.
Nye's call for people to ''quit denying and get to work'' would have more impact on the total use of fossil fuels, improve the world's economic standard of living, and mitigate the effects of climate change if he would stop denying that nuclear energy is a proven, abundant, effective way to reduce fossil fuel consumption.
Nuclear energy's proven capability to reduce fossil fuel consumption is, in my opinion, one of the main reasons that it isn't very popular yet. Fossil fuel producers '-- long-time masters of politics, advertising and propaganda techniques '-- have many reasons to discourage solutions that would reduce their product sales.
Since the ad-supported media is one of the main financial beneficiaries of the fossil fuel industry's continuing, long-running marketing campaign to promote its own products while discouraging competitive products this is a line of argument that you will not hear very often.
VIDEO-Slovenia and Croatia struggle to handle refugees after Hungary closes borders | Reuters.com
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 13:39
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VIDEO-Something is happening after 22 years our number stations have went live!!!! - YouTube
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VIDEO-Jeb Bush Talks Gibberish After Asked About Limiting The "Military Industrial Complex" - YouTube
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VIDEO-The DRONE KING Now Requires ALL Privately Owned DRONES To Be Registered With The Federal Government! - YouTube
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VIDEO-On eve of election, Cologne mayoral candidate stabbed in 'racist' attack | euronews, world news
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:45
An independent candidate for mayor of the German city of Cologne, who is supported by Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU party, has been stabbed by a man while campaigning in the city.
Henriette Reker and an aide were seriously injured. Mrs. Reker is in a critical condition. Three other people were injured when they intervened to help.
Police say they arrested a 44-year-old man, who said he was motivated by Reker's support for refugees.
Reker is also backed by the FDP and Greens, and has been involved in supporting and helping house refugees in the city. The election takes place on Sunday.
VIDEO-Calais migrant camp numbers double to 6,000 | Reuters.com
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:38
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Tsunami - unclaimed possessionsTue, Dec 23, 2014 -(2:23)
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The world in a cityFri, Oct 31, 2014 -(1:30)
Real-life superheroesTue, Oct 28, 2014 -(1:44)
View from the hill: Covering Kobani from afarThu, Oct 23, 2014 -(0:59)
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VIDEO-pba commercial - YouTube
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:28
VIDEO-Hillary Clinton laughs when Jake Tapper asks about her email server - YouTube
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VIDEO-Clinton meets with 'Black Lives Matter' activists | MSNBC
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:18
One-on-one with 'Veep' star Matt Walsh
MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell talks with Matt Walsh, who plays Mike McLintock on HBO's 'Veep', about what O'Donnell saw when he visited the 'Veep' writers' room '' plus, Walsh talks about his new comedy film 'A Better You,' which he co-wrote, stars in, and...
The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell
10/06/15
Duration: 6:24
VIDEO-20 jaar geleden: Veronica gaat commercieel | Spreekbuis
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 03:04
20 jaar geleden: Veronica gaat commercieel | Spreekbuis
Door: Hans van Dijk - October 17, 2015
Op 1 september ging Veronica door als commercieel station. Een jaar hiervoor had de omroep bekend gemaakt na 36 jaar uit het publieke bestel te stappen.
Het commerciele avontuur kan niet direct als succesvol worden beschouwd. De vereniging kreeg onenigheid met HMG en daardoor is er Veronica enige tijd uit de lucht geweest. Tegenwoordig zijn Veronica Magazine en Veronica TV onderdeel van SBS Nederland/Sanoma. Het radiostation valt onder Sky Radio/TMG. De Veronica Vereniging houdt zich onder de naam V-Ventures vooral bezig met investeringen in vooral mediabedrijven. Onder 'Veronica Story Holding' houdt de vereniging zich bezig met het vastleggen van de Veronica-geschiedenis.
Video-documentaire (52 minuten): Veronica 1959 1995, 36 jaar Veronica
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VIDEO-Rising sea levels to swallow Miami, New Orleans, study claims | www.whio.com
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:53
We might be saying goodbye to Miami, New Orleans and basically the entire U.S. coast, according to a new study.
The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, looked at the impact of carbon emissions on coastal cities and calculated when it would be too late to save those cities by cutting emissions. (Video via NASA)
These coastal doomsday projections are nothing new. There have been many sea level studies, and scientists generally project the sea level will rise 4 to 6 meters by 2100. (Video via NASA)
>> Read more trending stories
But this study stresses "lock-in dates" for each city, a kind of climate deadline where, if emissions aren't drastically cut back by a certain year, at least part of that city is going underwater. (Video via NASA)
Miami and New Orleans have already passed their lock-in dates. Meanwhile, Hollywood, Florida, has until 2025; New York has until 2095; and Sacramento, California, has until 2050. (Video via The National)
But apparently, there's hope for some cities. Researchers believe that extreme cuts to carbon emissions and a shift to using more renewable energy could stop the trend. (Video via CNN)
The lead author of the study told CBS: "We are not talking about a sea level rise happening tomorrow. Instead, we are talking about what could happen if the genie we let out of the bottle continues to grow. We are talking about what could happen if we continue to emit this much carbon into the atmosphere."
But these dates shouldn't be taken as set in stone, because there are so many factors at play, no two doomsday studies are alike. For instance, a recent NASA study concluded it's already too late to stave off sea level rise, while the U.N.'s climate panel says that tipping point is years away.
This video includes an image from Getty Images.
VIDEO-Hungary closes border to migrants | Reuters.com
Sun, 18 Oct 2015 02:50
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The legacy of Hurricane KatrinaFri, Aug 28, 2015 -(2:38)
Images of JulyFri, Jul 31, 2015 -(1:00)
Images of JuneThu, Jul 02, 2015 -(0:59)
Images of MayThu, Jun 04, 2015 -(1:00)
TIMELAPSE: Disney's 60th anniversary parade of...Wed, May 27, 2015 -(1:22)
Images of AprilFri, May 01, 2015 -(1:00)
Images of MarchWed, Apr 01, 2015 -(1:00)
Images of FebruaryFri, Feb 27, 2015 -(0:30)
TIMELAPSE: On the Grammy red carpetWed, Feb 11, 2015 -(2:58)
Images of JanuaryFri, Jan 30, 2015 -(0:30)
Images of DecemberTue, Dec 23, 2014 -(0:30)
Tsunami - unclaimed possessionsTue, Dec 23, 2014 -(2:23)
Images of NovemberTue, Dec 02, 2014 -(0:30)
Images of OctoberMon, Nov 03, 2014 -(0:57)
The world in a cityFri, Oct 31, 2014 -(1:30)
Real-life superheroesTue, Oct 28, 2014 -(1:44)
View from the hill: Covering Kobani from afarThu, Oct 23, 2014 -(0:59)
Dance of the northern lightsMon, Oct 20, 2014 -(1:08)
Beating addiction with the world's hardest...Sun, Oct 12, 2014 -(2:34)
Images of SeptemberWed, Oct 01, 2014 -(1:00)
Still missing '' MH370Fri, Sep 05, 2014 -(2:05)
Burning TogetherMon, Sep 01, 2014 -(2:23)
Mending dolls, teddies and heartsFri, Aug 22, 2014 -(3:12)
Images of AugustFri, Aug 29, 2014 -(1:00)
"Old timers" sail the Chesapeake BayMon, Aug 11, 2014 -(2:27)
Burned memoriesFri, Aug 08, 2014 -(3:02)
Images of JulyThu, Jul 31, 2014 -(1:20)
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VIDEO-Bill Maher Is Feeling The Bern '-- Endorses Bernie Sanders for President (VIDEO) | Addicting Info: The Knowledge You Crave
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 16:19
Bill Maher got to feel the Bern '-- Bernie Sanders on Friday night's Real Time. So much so, Maher unofficially threw his support behind the Vermont Senator's bid for President.
Maher greeted Sanders for their interview by saying, ''I want to help your campaign. I want to see you get the nomination. I want to see you be president.'' If that comes with a $1 million check like it did for Obama is anyone's guess. They quickly dived deep into the Sanders brand of ''democratic socialism'' and the fact that we're already practicing a form of socialism in the United States today.
''My question for you is the word 'socialist' '-- I want to get right to this,'' Maher said. ''Because I want to help your campaign, I want to see you get the nomination, [so] we have to teach Americans what this is '... I don't think most Americans realize that they're already socialists.''
Sanders explained that most Americans need to be educated on what ''democratic socialists'' like himself want for government and what it means. ''We want to deal with grotesque level of income inequality in America,'' he said. ''On every one of the major issues I am talking about, the American people agree.'' Two examples of the public supporting a more socialist system are free public college tuition and raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy.
Maher agreed, but said that Republicans can't understand it, and that most Americans don't realize we have so much socialism so far:
''Socialism is the programs they already like. They like Social Security. That's socialism. They like Medicare. They like the VA. They like the military. It's already a socialist country'... We have to un-demonize that word'... [The number of people who say they'd vote for a socialist] is at the bottom [of the list] '-- they hear 'socialist,' they hear 'herpes,' Bernie!''
But Maher called for a reality check on the feasibility of the Sanders plans saying that even Vermont couldn't pay for universal healthcare using only taxes for the one percent. There needed to be another revenue stream to support it.
''If you're saying that the government is gonna pick up the tab,'' Maher went on, ''but not make the insurance companies, the hospitals, and the doctors not gouge people, then we are gonna break the budget. It has to work both ways.''
''The United States is the only major country on Earth that allows private insurance companies to make huge profits in the health care system,'' Sanders replied. ''The function of health care should be to provide quality care to all people, not to make huge profits for the drug companies and insurance companies.''
''You're saying we can pay for all of this without raising taxes on anyone but the 1 percent?'' Maher asked.
''We may have to go down a little bit lower than that, but not much lower,'' Sanders replied.
Republican heads are exploding all over America right now. For years, they've tried to hang the ''socialist'' label on so many Democrats that aren't, in fact, socialist. Now a candidate is coming along telling Americans that he wants to actually give them a more democratic form of socialism, and people like it because it turns out folks actually want services from their government. Will the GOP call all Americans takers as a result? Remember Mitt Romney's 47 percent line'... That didn't work out so well for him.
Republicans, by contrast, want as little government as possible unless it is to regulate your uterus or who you're sleeping with. The convoluted argument is so extreme that those who embrace things like Social Security and Medicare, and want to see a bigger, adequately funded, robust Veterans Administration, are proof the citizenry can be moved with actual education on the issue.
The question is always, can you educate the country while running for president? Can you legitimately change enough voters' minds and get your people out to vote? Bernie Sanders is going to try, and Bill Maher seems like he's going to fight along with him.
Check out the interview below:
Feature image via video capture
VIDEO-Flooding, mudslides strand southern California drivers | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 14:03
STORY: Heavy rain triggers flooding and mudslides in the foothills north of Los Angeles. Several inches of rain fell in an hour on Thursday...the rushing water prompting authorities to close roads, leaving drivers stranded. (SOUNDBITE) (English) John Hall, Stranded driver, saying: "It's so bad, its like a lake. This is wild! Its not only dirty water, I have no idea what's in this water." (SOUNDBITE) (English) Jeanne Eisele, Stranded driver, saying: "Apparently the hail was going through my skylight." California Highway Patrol even closed parts of the busy Interstate 5 freeway in both directions. Flood warnings from The National Weather Service for parts of northwestern Los Angeles County and northeastern Ventura County tell drivers in a statement: "Turn around, don't drown."
VIDEO-Greek MPs to vote on unpopular reforms | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 13:58
Greek MPs are set to vote on a range of reforms including raising the retirement age and increasing punishments for tax evasion, in order to secure the country's third bailout. Kirsty Basset looks at what's at stake for Greece and its prime minister, Alexis Tsipras.
TRANSCRIPT +
Raising the retirement age, cutting pensions and increasing punishments for tax evasion. Unpopular reforms that have driven protesters to the streets, ahead of a vote in the Greek parliament. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) PAME UNION MEMBER, YANNIS TASIOULAS, SAYING: "The measures that the government wants to introduce are disastrous. No one is exempt from this attack; young or old, pensioner or unemployed, worker or student." The government has said it had no other choice but to approve the reforms, to help the economy get back on its feet. At stake is access to much needed aid in an 86 billion euro bailout deal. IG's Alastair McCaig believes the reforms will ultimately be approved. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IG MARKET ANALYST, ALASTAIR MCCAIG, SAYING: "Considering the difficulties with which Greece had to battle in order to get August's austerity package on the table from the eurozone, common sense would dictate that this should be a relatively straightforward decision." And if the painful bills are passed, it may open the door to talks on restructuring Greece's massive debts - which are set to exceed 180 per cent of GDP this year. That's a discussion Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras would like to get going before the end of the year. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IG MARKET ANALYST, ALASTAIR MCCAIG, SAYING: "This would be a sizeable step in the right direction and certainly expediate any further negotiations and assistance as regards to debt relief towards Greece." Inspectors are expected in Athens this month to check on the country's progress in implementing the aid deal agreed in August.
VIDEO-New study raises Ebola spectre | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 13:52
News and Media Division of Thomson Reuters
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NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.
VIDEO-EU looks to Turkey to stop migrant influx | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 13:50
News and Media Division of Thomson Reuters
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
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VIDEO-The President Delivers a Statement on Afghanistan | The White House
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:59
October 15, 2015 | 17:46 | Public Domain
President Obama delivers an update on Americas' combat mission in Afghanistan in the Roosevelt Room at the White House. October 15, 2015.
Download mp4 (655MB) | mp3 (43MB)
VIDEO-Sanders dances on Ellen, addresses U.S. economy | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:58
(ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: U.S. Democratic Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders taped an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show Wednesday (October 14) to discuss his campaign run and also to seemingly have a little fun, on the usually lighthearted show. Sanders showed off some of his moves during the interview, which aired in the U.S. on Thursday (October 15), as he danced onto the set - the typical entrance of many of DeGeneres' guests. He then played a game of question and answer with DeGeneres. Among the questions, he was asked what Republican candidate he'd want to be stuck with on a desert island, Sanders responded, "Marco Rubio; he's used to the sun." Sanders, a 74-year-old U.S. senator from Vermont, is trailing Clinton in most polls, but is considered the strongest contender for the Democratic nomination after the former U.S. Secretary of State.
VIDEO/Yahoo kills passwords for email | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:56
A small step toward making passwords pass(C). Yahoo is beefing up cyber security - by eliminating passwords. The company announced users of its Yahoo mail app will have access to a new service called Yahoo Account key. Here's how that works. The service uses smartphones to verify identity instead of a password. When the user tries to log on, the service sends a message to the smartphone connected to the account. With a tap on yes or no, users can indicate if it is a legitimate attempt to get into the account or deny access. And if their smartphone is lost or stolen, users can verify their identities through an email or a text message sent to alternative email accounts and phone numbers. But Symantec security manager Satnam Narang doesn't think most users will let go of their passwords soon, saying "I think passwords are going to be around for a little while ...they're so ingrained in everything we do from banking to email to shopping, you name it." The mail app also connects with Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter and pulls photos and social media information for contacts.
VIDEO-World economy is transitioning-World Bank's Bertrand Badre | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:54
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Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
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VIDEO-Tesla hands-free cars drive closer to reality | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:46
News and Media Division of Thomson Reuters
Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. Nasdaq delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here.
VIDEO-Germany orders VW recall | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:46
The quicker the clean up, the quicker the recovery But for German authorities, it hasn't come fast enough at VW. Industry watchdog KBA has ordered the company to recall 2.4 million vehicles, after reportedly rejecting its proposal to leave it up to customers. Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt. (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN TRANSPORT MINISTER, ALEXANDER DOBRINDT, SAYING: "The KBA believes this to be a case of software using an unreliable defeat device. VW must now remove the corresponding software from all vehicles and take the necessary steps to ensure compliance with emission regulations." It's nearly a month since the emissions scandal first surfaced at Volkswagen But it's still not clear who did what and when. A response that's been heavily criticised by consumers and investors. But Citi's Christian Schulz thinks they're doing the right thing. SOUNDBITE (English) CHRISTIAN SCHULZ, ECONOMIST, CITI, SAYING: "There is a balance to be struck between clearing it up as quickly as possible but at the same time to be as thorough as possible in order to get a clearer picture of what it will actually cost in the end." VW has set aside 6.5 billion euros. But some analysts think the final cost will be five times that, as refits, fines and lawsuits continue to mount. Italy the latest to pile on the pressure, with simultaneous police raids on VW's Verona headquarters and the offices of Lamborghini. As if things couldn't get any worse... the company's just lost one of its most trusted directors. Winfried Vahland, the man poised to take over VW's North American arm, has quit, citing differences over the division's operations.
VIDEO-Santa Claus elected to public office | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:37
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) A man with a soft white beard who prides himself on being an advocate for young children has been elected as a city councilman in North Pole, Alaska. The rosy-cheeked 68-year-old candidate, who happens to be named Santa Claus, won a three-year term in the community of about 2,200 residents southeast of Fairbanks, according to election results released on Tuesday (October 13). "I'm fairly well known. I think people are pleased with it. We'll see. Time will tell. I have three years to make a positive impression so hopefully I will get off on the right foot later this month," Claus told Reuters in a Skype interview. Claus, who legally changed his name from Thomas Patrick O'Connor about a decade ago while living in Nevada, said he has been an advocate for legislation and services that benefit at-risk children. He could be seen in recent days wearing his trademark red velvet outfit and holding a campaign sign in North Pole, the namesake of the home of the legendary Christmas gift-giver. Claus was one of two write-in candidates for two vacant seats in the Oct. 6 election. "I'd like to keep accomplishing as much as I can on behalf of children, especially vulnerable children in dire straights. So I'm trying to use my time wisely and use it to benefit as many children as I possibly can," he said about his goal on the job. Claus said his naughty and nice lists may come in handy in this new job. "Particularly in politics I find it kind of tempting to categorize people and place them on one list or another," Claus said. He also said children don't have to worry that he won't have time to get presents ready for Christmas, joking, "Fortunately the elves can do most of that. They're pretty good at it. They've been around for a long, long time." He will take office on Oct. 26, North Pole City Clerk Kathy Weber said.
VIDEO-Opposition gasses Kosovo's parliament | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:37
STORY: For the second week in a row, opposition members gassed Kosovo's parliament. They are trying to scuttle a deal that would grant ethnic Serbian enclaves in Kosovo greater autonomy. Opposition politicians claim the EU-brokered deal undermines the sovereignty of Kosovo, which declared independence from Serbia in 2008. Belgrade has refused to recognize the small nation ever since. On Monday, police fought running battles with stone-throwing protesters who demanded the release of the parliamentarian who set off gas in the chamber last week. A bloc of opposition parties vows to continue disrupting parliament until the deal with Serbia is defeated.
VIDEO-London mayor knocks down boy in Tokyo street rugby | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:33
Rugby is rough sport... especially if you're 10 years old and up against the mayor of London. During a street rugby match against school children in Tokyo, Boris Johnson accidentally knocked over a boy named Toki. The floppy blond haired 51-year-old quickly helped the boy up and apologised. Toki took it all in stride. I was happy to play against Boris, he said. And some of the strongest men in Japan. Although they failed to reach the quarter-finals, the Japanese team's performance in the Rugby World Cup tournament sent shockwaves around the sporting world. Johnson is in Japan on a trip to bolster trade and cultural ties with Tokyo.
VIDEO-Turkish PM points finger at IS and PKK | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 12:32
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Thomson Reuters is the world's largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on Reuters.com, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms. Thomson Reuters journalists are subject to an Editorial Handbook which requires fair presentation and disclosure of relevant interests.
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VIDEO-Obama Mocked By Entire World | Real Jew News
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:19
Brother NathanaelOctober 14, 2015 @ 10:23 pmText ''Text'' Text
Obama Mocked By Entire WorldBy Brother Nathanael KapnerCopyright 2015
Obama is now the laughing stock of the world.
Just watching him touting US hypocrisy for all the world to see at the UN embarrasses any thinking US citizen.
I mean, doesn't this clown realize that everyone can see through his jive?
[Clip: ''Today, we see the collapse of strongmen and fragile states breeding conflict, and driving innocent men, women and children across borders on an epic scale. Brutal networks of terror have stepped into the vacuum.'']
You're the one who caused it.
Your 'regime change''--in Iraq, Libya, and now your disastrous attempts in Syria'--has fostered terrorist groups who you arm to fill the vacuum.
Everyone knows there's no difference between 'good terrorists' and 'bad terrorists.' They work together, trading US weapons with each other.
And who couldn't keep from laughing hearing Obama shriek about Russia 'invading' Turkish airspace while his hypocrisy is on parade.
[Clip: ''We recognize the deep and complex history between Russia and Ukraine. But we cannot stand by when the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a nation is flagrantly violated. If that happens without consequence in Ukraine, it could happen to any nation gathered here today.'']
But it already happened without consequence in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and almost Syria, and that's why no nation trusts America anymore. It could happen to them too.
Veiled threats tell it all.
[Clip: ''As President of the United States, I am mindful of the dangers that we face; they cross my desk every morning. I lead the strongest military that the world has ever known, and I will never hesitate to protect my country or our allies, unilaterally and by force where necessary.'']
Right. Jewmerika's way or the highway'...to a living hell.
And don't point the finger at Russia, Obama. Syria never asked for your false war on ISIS. But Russia was invited to do the job.
The world's a troubled place thanks to American imperialism.
But Obama seems to think 'anti-Semitism' is the problem.
[Clip: ''Most ominously, we see the fears of ordinary people being exploited through appeals to sectarianism, or tribalism, or racism, or anti-Semitism; appeals to a glorious past before the body politic was infected by those who look different, or worship God differently; a politics of us versus them.'']
More like Jews versus us.
Where else did Obama get his disastrous foreign policy but from the Jews of the ''Project For The New American Century'''--now ''Foreign Policy Initiative'''--who wrote the scary ''Building America's Defenses.''
The usual suspects were among the signatories: Kagan, Kristol, Cohen'...still active in spreading wars for the Jews around the world.
Their neocon Pax Americana, more like Pax Judaica, has created nothing but misery in their hellish 'regime changes' that only benefit Israel.
And all we're left with is a broken country at home.
But Obama's lies keep on coming.
[Clip: ''The United States is not immune from this. Even as our economy is growing and our troops have largely returned from Iraq and Afghanistan'...'']
Stop there.
Our economy is not growing, it's shrinking.
And our returning soldiers can't find jobs while their suicide rates are on the rise.
I can't think of a worse time in American history, can you?
America needs to admit its failures and apologize to the world.
But don't count on it.
When Jews rule a country, repentance is bad policy.
Brother NathanaelOctober 14, 2015 @ 10:24 pmWatch This NEW Video Worldwide & In All EU Countries CENSOR FREE:
Obama Mocked By Entire World @
http://brothernathanaelchannel.com/watch_video.php?v=1125
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! @
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Brother NathanaelOctober 14, 2015 @ 10:30 pmDear Real Jew News Family,
I have a proposition to make.
Due to the HUGE popularity of my Videos, I am thinking about doing TWO Videos per week, as time allows.
But owing to the HIGH COSTS of production (I employ an assistant to work alongside of me) I would need SPECIAL FUNDING to make TWO VIDS per week possible.
If you would like to see MORE VIDEOS, beginning with TWO per week, please consider making a generous donation for this purpose. (Memo your checks or online donations with: ''MORE VIDEOS PLEASE.''
And by the way, if I do get the funding I need, I am looking to lease a special '4D' software that rivals ''Maya'' that will bring my Videos up to the NEXT LEVEL in state-of-the-art productions.
(I already lease Adobe's ''Creative Cloud'' Video software'...the '4D' software would be an addition used for special effects'...I mean, REALLY special effects, that NO ONE else is doing on YouTube.)
Hope many of you can get behind this new prospect of TWO VIDEOS per week!
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MikeSOctober 14, 2015 @ 11:24 pmWell said.
The Russians are very careful about what they say about our foreign policy, but even using subtlety they've made it abundantly clear that Obombu is a liar and a puppet.
Great video, thanks.
Brother NathanaelOctober 14, 2015 @ 11:25 pmDear All,
Need your prayers.
I'm fighting a very bad sore throat and ear ache which is causing me much pain and difficulty in swallowing.
Your prayers are appreciated. +BN
TRAITOROctober 14, 2015 @ 11:46 pmHe said: ''But we cannot stand by when the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a nation is flagrantly violated.''
He REALLY said that? I mean I KNOW he said that, but can you believe he said that?
He has opened our borders to millions, he is overseeing an INVASION, he is overseeing the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the USA being flagrantly violated, and he does nothing except invite more illegals to come!
His heart is so black that Hell will not recognize him when Obama ends up there.
Eileen K.October 14, 2015 @ 11:52 pmBr. Nathanael, you truly nailed this one perfectly, with this your latest Video
Obama's indeed a pathological liar, one of the traits of a narcissist. The truth about the USSA military today is totally opposite of his description of it during his UN speech.
Thanks to the Jews who run American foreign policy and Obama's own EO's, the military is now infested with LBGT freaks. And, we all know what that means''a feminized military that's no longer able to fight like it did before these freaks were let in.
Yes, even with these freaks infesting its ranks, the USSA military can still wage terror on weak nations''just look what happened to Libya; it's still in chaos. This military wouldn't stand a chance against Russia or China. Obama, as you said, is now the laughingstock of the world. Putin has checkmated him at every turn.
I'm happy, Br. Nat, that you're back in your own turf and producing such good articles/videos. I still pray for more donations to reach you; and, by next week, I'll be sending mine.
Take care, Brother, and God bless you always.
Eileen
elyOctober 15, 2015 @ 12:04 amVladimir Putin Just Destroyed 100 Years Worth of Prophetichttp://wakethechurch.org/Articles/tabid/410/ID/10847/Vladimir-Putin-Just-Destroyed-100-Years-Worth-of-Prophetic-Speculation.aspx
Israeli Sanhedrin in Jerusalem is considering killing President Obama (Michael Hoffman)http://noahidenews.com/2015/09/30/israeli-sanhedrin-in-jerusalem-is-considering-killing-president-obama-michael-hoffman/
The Noahide Evangelicals Cry out For the Third Temple of Doom and Wail for their king Moshiach (Noahide News)http://noahidenews.com/2015/10/09/the-noahide-evangelicals-cry-out-for-the-third-temple-of-doom-and-wail-for-their-king-moshiach/
Russian Leaflets Cite US and Israel as Real ISIS Backers (Veterans Today)( veteranstoday.com/2015/10/10/russian-leaflets-cite-us-and-israel-as-real-isis-backers/ )
Toyota, U.S. unsure how ISIS got brand new pickup trucks (NY Daily News)( nydailynews.com/news/world/toyota-u-s-unsure-isis-brand-new-pickup-trucks-article-1.2388210 )
Anti-Assad Conspiracy: Western Fingerprints All Over Syrian Civil War (Sputnik News)( sputniknews.com/middleeast/20151003/1027969671/assad-us-syria-chemical-weapons.html )
DC Watches Helplessly as Putin Bombs the Daylights out of their Pet Terrorists (Investment Watch)( investmentwatchblog.com/dc-watches-helplessly-as-putin-bombs-the-daylights-out-of-their-pet-terrorists/ )
Irene Bonney FaulkesOctober 15, 2015 @ 12:29 amDear Brother, am praying for you to be healed.
As to Obama you reveal in your comments as ever, wisdom and awareness of the problem. Before he was elected, one considered him a snake in the grass, despite the journalists having a love affair with him - and certain of the public.
After he became President, there was a certainty about his decisions, that he was actually showing stupidity. All the time, he was a tool of the Jews, doing their bidding.
Are his public remarks prepared also by them to show a personal idiocy, to a large segment of the world blind to the presence of his masters?
Would such falter at holding any comprehension that a world could eventually come to understand and then find ways and means of toppling them?
The American Empire has fallen and it may be that the mightier and hitherto invisible one oppressing them and controlling nations will have a similar fate.
The will of God will prevail.
What enemy exactly was Obama engaging when the American planes were 'in the attacks on Isil'? Desert sand. There was another but different Desert Storm.
Russia proves not to be Gog and Magog. There is no war aganist any people of God.
Instead, that mighty nation signals its stand with the people of God in Syria.
A pet doctrine no longer exists.
Will there be another invention to name another world power as replacement? Hopefully, the Christian Right and Christian Zionists will admit the folly of their End-time beliefs.
Its structure held in carnal imaginations is well on the way to a total collapse.
Now is the time to revert to beliefs as disclosed in the Holy Scriptures when observed through the transparent glass of basic honest and authentic but reconstructed mindset.
DaveOctober 15, 2015 @ 3:43 amSorry about your sore throat Brother Nathanael.
I know how you feel, real lousy. I too got a nasty cold from this little Polish Gipsy weasel, called Alex, but that's another long story.
Anyway, a good video and here's 3 of my poems that not only apply to me, but also to Brother Nathaniel and our mutual courage in taking a STAND against the vile Hooknosed community, we were both brought up in.
HONESTYWhether I am Richor Whether I am PoorI always speak my mindI am not a Whore !
Don't tell me what to thinkI will have my sayAt the end of the dayI will do it my way !
DIGNITYThere is one thing I ownIt is not a motor car or a homeIt is my Dignity, of courseAnd they will have to take that from me by force!
Compromise is great for someBut for me, it is like copping it up the bum !
I COMMITTED NO CRIMEI like to be part of societyI like to be happy and gayI do love the interactionI hop, I skip and I am happy all day
I love the friendly natureI love the gentle wayGive me federal prison anytimeFor I no longer have anything to say..
MichaelOctober 15, 2015 @ 3:52 amObama may look arrogant and defensive, however he is only a tool in the box easily replaceable.
I want to thrown my old computer out the window every time I hear the words ''growing economy.'' Negative growth that is. Try finding jobs that have decent benefits and vacation time. Good luck.
As for nations threatening us, none have! Zero, that is, less than one! Guarding poppy fields in Afghanistan, how nice. Destroying Iraq and sending them back centuries on a lie is disgusting.
The arrogance and pride of Jewmerica is the downfall of this nation. We're being strip mined and sucked dry.
When Vladimir Putin ordered the bombing of ISIS, this was the first time the United States was been outfoxed and checkmated. Guess what you'll never see on CNN? A live debate between Putin and Obama! Obama would be caught lying over and over and he'd have to change his underwear.
Ukraine was overthrown by the United States, and Russia had nothing to do with the coup or the MH-17 plane crash. Blaming Russia for Ukraine's crisis due to land proximity is disgusting.
Our next president whoever he (hopefully not HC) is will not get away with trying to outfox Putin or any other nation! No one trusts us.
1/3 of the US population believes 9/11 was an inside job. Outside this country, the numbers must be higher due to having a different view point away from this rotting devil worshiping, Jew boot licking empire. 9/11 was a lie, and the wars based off 9/11 are automatically fought on lies.
God always has the final word. Every lie is uncovered. Luke 8:17.
HugoOctober 15, 2015 @ 5:01 amIt would be interesting to research whether:
1) Russian jets are pounding ISIS positions and infrastructure
whereas
2) Axis of Evil jets are pounding infrastructure of Syria so as to leave a totally destroyed nation + no hope for the people + construction contracts in the future funded by the swindler banks of London and N.Y.
Just a thought.
Since Russia has called the bluff on the real sponsor/creator of world-wide terrorism it would be interesting to see what other bull-shine is at work.
Richard WilcoxOctober 15, 2015 @ 5:15 amObama is a complete phony, just look at the way he talks so disingenuously.
A disgrace to his race. A charlatan in a cheap suit. We have long ago surpassed the surreal nightmare of non think in George Orwell's 1984.
Many people will believe this crap though, given they have no skills to differentiate between nonsensical weak statements and assertions and reason and facts.
Welcome to the Jew-Obamatrix!
John of GodOctober 15, 2015 @ 7:58 amDrink some hot tea and eat hot soup Brother!
Jewmerica is clamping down on all of us, similar it seems: as Lenin/Stalin and Mao clamped down on their people.
While the Jew Bernie Sanders has some good points, he's still a communist and people are idiots for even considering him as a candidate. Jew = Bolshevik. Watch out Jewmerica!
I would say the only difference between us and Lenin clamping down on the Russian people; is the Russians probably didn't have the firearms like US citizens do.
There were the monarchist White (they were white in skin color but that wasn't the reason for the name for any race-baiter out there) Russians, but here in the USSRA the citizens have the ammo to fight it better.
R A FEIBELOctober 15, 2015 @ 8:25 amBro Nathanael,
As much as you and many others are presenting the truth of a world controlled by the Ziojew rothchild agenda, it is falling on deaf ears.
Unfortunately the MSM has the loudest trumpet and that is what the stupid uneducated fools who know more about the NFL/NBA/movies/pop music/and especially now the MLB playoffs hear, as they ''thumb'' their devices to find the lastest on Facebook/Twitter/etc.
Time is critical now as Russia and Putin are in the sights of the Ziojew warmongers and WW# could actually happen. Watch for a false flag to blame Russia in Syria, such as a bombing going off target and killing a huge number of civilians.
Enoough to get the stupid uneducated fools' attention in the U.S. ,so as to back an intervention against Russia.
Brother NathanaelOctober 15, 2015 @ 11:10 amDear All -
If you like what I am doing'...my Videos and my Articles'...I NEED you help to continue!
VERY FEW are supporting me financially and I am constantly on the wire trying to make ends meet.
To Donate Your Tax Deductible Contribution Via PayPal CLICK:
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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.
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Ft. NolanOctober 15, 2015 @ 1:15 pmListening to Obama is like hearing Bart Simpson complain about pranks and a lack of discipline. Don King bloviates a better story than Obama.
Once Obama is out of office and enough time passes, historians will refer to his eight years as Amerika's ''Dark Ages'' for more than one reason. Whereas Trump talks up a lively spell, he may not deliver on any of his promises.
Think ''TrumPerot'' and you may find some assemblance of understanding. Amerika's next POTUS has yet to run for the office. Everyone so far is merely a decoy following the squall line ahead of a storm too destructive to comprehend.
As for your illness, here's praying for relief and healing.
jimOctober 15, 2015 @ 7:24 pmCome hang out with me in Florida, and within a couple of weeks you will feel as healthy as a thoroughbred horse getting ready for a race. No charge by the way, and we can meditate for several hours per day.
Obama is a homosexual, crack head, compromised scumbag, whose wife is a transsexual. If it makes anyone out there feel any better, he probably either wears diapers or needs to. Michelle looks fairly ferocious.
This is why he always looks like a petulant bitch, and why Putin has a pity full, understanding look upon his face when he meets him.
Life is beautiful when you follow the commandments of the Lord Almighty, but when you go against the Natural flow of Life, then Hell burns you badly. We should all feel sorry for Obama, regardless of what a damned monster he has become, because his spirit is trapped in a most horrible place.
May the Infinite Creator have just mercy upon all of your souls.
hvtOctober 15, 2015 @ 8:45 pmBravo, dear Brother Nathanael, bravo!
HealthTipOctober 15, 2015 @ 9:16 pmSorry to hear about your earache & sore throat. Some things that might help (along with prayer):
A. Earaches:
1. Garlic softgels from any health food store, poke one softgel with a pin & squeeze out the liquid into your ear(s) & cover with a cotton ball. Garlic is a natural anti-microbial, anti-bacterial, anti-viral remedy. Or if you have garlic cloves on hand, you could squeeze them/juice them & drop the liquid into ear(s).
2. Another natural anti-microbial, anti-bacterial, anti-viral ear ache remedy is Coconut Oil. Jarrow brand is decent & is only about $16+ for 32ozs. at AllStarHealth online store. Just scoop out a pea-size chunk & plug your ear(s) with it & cover with cotton ball, & the coconut oil will melt into your ear canal.
B. Sore Throat:
1. Melt a big chunk of coconut oil in your mouth & then gargle with it.
2. Or if you have any Hydrogen Peroxide on hand, dilute some with water, add Sea Salt or Himalayan Salt, shake it all up & gargle with it as often as necessary. ''Food Grade'' Hydrogen Peroxide is best (no stabilizers as in the drug store kind), but in a pinch (ie, need it ASAP), & diluted, the cheap drug store kind will suffice.
If you ever buy the Food Grade kind, the 35% is very potent & must be diluted a lot; people at Amazon say it is a big pain, so they buy the 3% Food Grade already diluted.
3. Another great ''gargler'' (& ''cure all'') is Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar. Dilute with water & add honey. Tastes great! '-- Even Baking Soda, if you have any on hand, diluted in water, would be a great gargling combo.
For #3 & #4, rinse mouth with pure water after so the Peroxide and/or the Vinegar does not stay on teeth's enamel as they are a bit strong for tooth enamel.
Hope this helps!
KiimmpossibleOctober 15, 2015 @ 9:50 pmDear Brother Nathanael - praying fervently for your physical healing.
Brother NathanaelOctober 15, 2015 @ 10:00 pmThank you all for your prayers. Not feeling any better, actually worse. I guess my body is telling me to REST.
+BN
Brother NathanaelOctober 15, 2015 @ 10:05 pmJEWmerica says ''Assad must go!'' And the homosexual Liar In Chief parrots the Jew missive.
BUT, Syria has a Constitution, renewed in 2012 by popular mandate @http://sana.sy/en/?page_id=1489 (Scroll Down)
Assad was re-elected through the framework of the Syrian Constitution by popular majority vote.
But JEWS and their puppets don't care about the legal framework of targeted nations' governing infrastructure.
What the wicked, chaos-creating JEWS really need to say to remain respectful of Syria's legal political structure is: ''The Syrian Constitution must go!''
But that's a bad slogan for the JEW-OWNED media to publicize. +BN
Deborah CarterOctober 16, 2015 @ 12:49 am@+BN
Please get well, we need you!
elyOctober 16, 2015 @ 12:55 amIsraeli Media Fabricating Palestinian Attacks Of Jews, Lying To Public
http://www.middleeastrising.com/israeli-media-fabricating-jewish-deaths-lying-to-public/
stevenOctober 16, 2015 @ 5:58 amWestern governments are both insane and a disgrace in addition to being criminal.
They got to go!
HugoOctober 16, 2015 @ 12:04 pmAs expected here it is:
https://www.rt.com/news/318861-demoralized-isis-militants-deserting/
a) Russian airstrikes hit ISIS military infrastructure.
b) Axis of Evil airstrikes hit civilian infrastructure (e.g. sewage plants etc.) thereby totally destroying the lives of people and feeding the refugee problem.
Plus we should remember that Russia has been invited to Syria by the legitimate government and therefore its air-force are operating legally, whereas NATO flights over Syria = air piracy, an infringement of a nation's sovereignty and therefore a declaration of war.
Meanwhile the hypocritical Rothschild controlled British government:
a) Wets its nappies when Russian military planes approach its airspace but refuses to apply the same standard to itself over Syria.
b) Cries crocodile tears over the refugee crisis without recognizing its leading and deliberate role in creating this humanitarian disaster.
c) Sends its navy to pick up refugees and dump them on impoverished Greek Islands (to roars of approval from the Jewish controlled M.S.M. who supported all these wars) yet flies into a baby tantrum when these refugees make their way to Calais and attempt to get to the UK.
Russia is the only sane nation.
One must conclude that this is because Governmental thinking is still infused with the Christian Orthodox religion whereas in the West, Governmental actions are rooted in concepts of right and wrong that come straight out of 2 witchcraft manuals known as the Talmud & Kabbalah.
elyOctober 16, 2015 @ 11:18 pmChinese anti-ISIS drones in Iraq Growing numbers of [U.S. Israeli] Islamic State militants in Syria have become discontent with their command and deserted the ranks of the militant group amid the Russian anti-terror operation, Moscow's Defense Ministry said on Friday.
''The majority of armed gangs are demoralized. Discontent with field commanders is growing amid the ['...]
Demoralized U.S. Israeli ISIS Militants Deserting En Masse Amid Russian Airstrikes '' Defense Ministry.
http://politicalvelcraft.org/2015/10/16/demoralized-u-s-israeli-isis-militants-deserting-en-masse-amid-russian-airstrikes-defense-ministry/
VIDEO-Sex workers in France decry proposed prostitution law | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:07
French sex workers are angry. A new law being considered by the Senate would no longer penalize the prostitutes but WOULD fine their clients if caught in the act.. and demonstrators converged on the Senate building in Paris to protest. A member of a charitable association that tries to help prostitutes says the change would make life more dangerous for the workers. (SOUNDBITE) (French) MEMBER OF CHARITABLE ASSOCIATION "FRIENDS OF THE BUS FOR WOMEN", ELISABETH, SAYING: "So the impact on female sex workers is that they will have to hide and to hide means living a more precarious life." One sex worker says prostitutes pay taxes just like other citizens, and should be treated like them. (SOUNDBITE) (French) SEX WORKER, ORLENA, SAYING: "The government's job is to protect us -- not to persecute us, nor to persecute our clients. We pay taxes like everyone else, we should have rights too. We ask for a law that recognizes our job." The law has been hotly-debated for two years, a disagreement - like the ancient profession itself - that shows no sign of going away.
VIDEO-Tanzania's latest TV celebrities are female farmers | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:06
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VIDEO-U.S. concerned about escalating Mideast violence in Israel | Reuters.com
Sat, 17 Oct 2015 11:01
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) The White House said on Wednesday that it has "deep concerns" about violence in Israel and condemns the loss of any innocent life, whether it be Israeli or Palestinian. White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the United States is in regular contact with Israeli and Palestinian officials about the escalating violence. "We continue to urge all side to take affirmative steps to restore calm and prevent actions that would further escalate tensions in the region," said Earnest.
VIDEO-Pope seeks forgiveness for church sex scandals | Reuters.com
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 16:45
Pope Francis is seeking forgiveness for recent scandals that have rocked the Vatican and Rome. It's in an apparent response to revelations of gay sex by priests, revealed this month during a meeting of bishops. (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) POPE FRANCIS SAYING: "Jesus is a realist. He says it is inevitable that there will be scandals. But woe to the man who causes scandals. Today, before I begin the Catechism, in the name of the Church, I ask you for forgiveness for the scandals that have occurred recently either in Rome or in the Vatican." The Pope's appeal came during his weekly general audience at St. Peter's Square. Earlier this month, a Polish priest was fired from his job at the Vatican after he held a news conference announcing -- not only that he's gay -- but that he's been living with another man for years. The next week, Italian media reported a clergyman at a Rome parish allegedly had encounters with -- quote "vulnerable adults" -- at a park frequented by male prostitutes. Parishioners were reportedly furious the clergyman had simply been moved to another part of Italy instead of being disciplined. It's not the first time Francis has sought forgiveness on behalf of the Catholic Church.... the institution still coming to grips with global accusations of child sex abuse by the clergy, and with its treatment of Protestants and indigenous people throughout its history.
VIDEO-Theranos CEO fires back at WSJ: I was shocked
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 13:33
One of the most exciting privately held companies in Silicon Valley came under fire on Thursday. Theranos has been viewed by some as a revolutionary company, and has been valued at as much at $9 billion in its most recent round of fundraising.
Theranos is a diagnostics company with fast finger-prick blood testing technology that aims to upend the traditional health care establishments by making it easier, less expensive and less uncomfortable to get tested for various conditions.
However the company also has critics, as The Wall Street Journal ran an article about Theranos alleging that the company's proprietary testing devices may be inaccurate. The Journal cited a former employee that claimed that of the 240 tests offered by Theranos, only 15 are actually performed on the company's proprietary Edison diagnostic machine, with the vast majority done on traditional lab equipment.
Read MoreTheranos under fire over lab test accuracy
"That article was pretty brutal," the "Mad Money" host said. A WSJ representative earlier told CNBC the newspaper "fully stands by [author] John Carreyrou's article about Theranos, which was richly sourced and thoroughly researched."
With that in mind, Cramer always likes to make sure both sides of a story are represented. That is why he spoke with Elizabeth Holmes, the founder and CEO of Theranos, to give her a chance to provide her perspective.
VIDEO-SHOCK CLAIM: World is on brink of 50 year ICE AGE and BRITAIN will bear the brunt | Weather | News | Daily Express
Fri, 16 Oct 2015 12:14
GETTY
The world is on the brink of a 50-year ice age and Britain will bear the bruntCrippling blizzards, snowstorms and sub-zero temperatures threaten a yearly dose of Arctic misery for the next FIFTY YEARS at least - and possibly decades more.
Climate experts warn a rare pattern of water cooling in the north Atlantic will trigger a chain reaction of events leading to a ''fully-blown ice age''.
The say the UK is on alert for a ''serious climate situation'' with regular winter whiteouts pushing emergency services to the limit.
Related articlesREUTERS
Wintry scenes like this one on London's Clapham Common could become commonplace in the next 50 yearsBritain faces an 'all but unprecedented' situation thanks to a cocktail of climatic changes all happening at once to affect the weather.
The northern Atlantic has been cooling steadily over the past few months leading to a colossal area of icy water to form off the UK coast.
This is thought to be the result of changes in wind flow and salinity and could lead to lower than average temperatures in Britain all year round.
The phenomenon has already raised fears this winter will be un usually brutal with months of sub-zero temperatures and heavy snow on the way.
Long-term accumulative effects could be that parts of northern Europe, including Britain, will cool dramatically.
PA
Britain could soon find itself in a permanent winter if the mini ice age comes to passAssuming the Atlantic current slow-down theory is correct, and should the abnormally cold water off of Greenland remain consistent, it could continue to partially block the transport of warm water and correspondingly warm air into western Europe for years
AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski
The seemingly small drop in Atlantic temperatures also threatens to nudge the Gulf Stream, which brings warm currents to the UK coasts, off course.
The usual flow of air over Europe from the Arctic towards Bermuda and the tropical Azores Islands is also likely to be thrown out of kilter.
Another driver will be a dramatic reduction in solar energy output which has been observed over the past few months.
Long-range forecasters say this will add to the mix with the UK at risk of a ''fully-blown ice age'' before the end of the century.
AccuWeather senior meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said icy Atlantic waters could affect the weather for years to come.
He said: ''The temperature of surface ocean water can vastly affect the temperature of nearby land areas.
''A 'blob' of abnormally cold water in the North Atlantic, located near Greenland, has the potential to put enough drag on the ocean current to impact weather conditions in the years to come.
''Long-term effects of the altering of the Gulf Stream and other Atlantic currents are complex.
''Assuming the Atlantic current slow-down theory is correct, and should the abnormally cold water off of Greenland remain consistent, it could continue to partially block the transport of warm water and correspondingly warm air into western Europe for years to come.
''The climate in the region including in London, Amsterdam, Paris and Lisbon could then cool a few degrees, relative to the warming conditions around the globe.''
NASA
Record low temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean could spark dramatic weather in the UK this winterAccuWeather long-range expert Brett Anderson added: ''When there is an anomaly with either the atmosphere or ocean temperature you can bet there will be some effect on the other nearby or far away.''
The warning comes just months after the Met Office warned Britain might be facing another maunder minimum ice age.
A recent report warned the amount of light and warmth released by the sun is nosediving to levels "not seen for centuries".
A so-called 'Maunder Minimum' has been responsible for historic winter whiteouts and led to the River Thames freezing 300 years ago.
The Met Office-led study claimed that although the effect will be offset by recent global warming, Britain faces years of unusually cold winters.
A spokesman said: "A return to low solar activity not seen for centuries could increase the chances of cold winters in Europe and eastern parts of the United States but wouldn't halt global warming.
"Return of 'grand solar minimum' could affect European and eastern US winters.''
NOAA
The strongest El Nino in history is threatening to play havoc with our weatherJames Madden, forecaster for Exacta Weather, said an unusually strong El Nino Pacific Ocean warming will contribute to the chilly mix.
He said the effects are likely to start emerging this year as Britain heads towards a severe, cold winter.
He said: ''We are entering what a number of weather models are showing as a strong El Nino event.
''The significance of an El Nino event on weather patterns for the UK are not as clear-cut, but some past indications do give good weighting to the development of colder winters over the British Isles.
''In terms of this winter the more direct and influential factors include the extremely low solar activity that we currently reside within, and the cold water anomaly in the North Atlantic.''
He said after a cycle of strong solar activity an ''off the charts'' dip in the sun's energy output will trigger years of potentially cold winters in the UK.
Related articlesThis will disrupt the flow of the warming Gulf Stream which usually hikes winter temperatures and blocks the full thrust of any Arctic flow.
He said: ''The Gulf Stream regulates winter temperatures to much warmer values than they should be for the likes of the UK and Ireland in respect to our overall latitude.
''In periods of high solar activity we experience a significant rise in solar energy which heats these vital ocean currents. ''An increase in solar activity levels heated ocean currents, which favoured certain atmospheric circulation patterns from around the globe whilst also retaining heat on earth from insulation.
''However, we are now in something completely different, and after such a period of high solar activity in recent decades, we have gone to something completely off the charts in terms of solar output.
''This also alters ocean behaviour to more long term cold cycles, and models can overcook El Nino conditions and their impacts as solar activity is currently low.
''This serious climate situation is also something that is unlikely to correct itself overnight as repeated analysis of past cycles and other contributing factors in relation to the current solar output and size/frequency of sunspots reveal to us quite conclusively that we are heading into something like a Maunder Minimum - a time when the Thames used to freeze over regularly in London - or a fully blown ice age in the coming years and decades.''
Long episodes of low solar activity were seen during the Maunder Minimum between 1645 and 1715 and the 'Dalton Minimum' from 1790 to 1830.
Both periods coincided with colder-than-normal global temperatures earning the title from scientists of "Little Ice Age.''
However some scientists say the outcome may not be as disastrous as others fear with the outcome still uncertain.
Dr Dan Hodson, climate scientist at the University of Reading, said the colder ocean temperatures could force a positive North Atlantic Oscillation leading to milder conditions.
He said: ''The current El Nino is building up to be a big one, and it is still a case of seeing what happens before we can know how it will affect things.
''There is evidence to suggest that cooling in the Atlantic can lead to a strong North Atlantic Oscillation and that would imply warmer and wetter winter weather.
''As we get closer to winter we will start to know more.''
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