Daily Archives

A fog of drugs and war

LA Times – U.S. Air Force pilot Patrick Burke’s day started in the cockpit of a B-1 bomber near the Persian Gulf and proceeded across nine time zones as he ferried the aircraft home to South Dakota. Every four hours during the 19-hour flight, Burke swallowed a tablet of Dexedrine, the prescribed amphetamine known as “go pills.” After landing, he went out for dinner and drinks with a fellow crewman. They were driving back to Ellsworth Air Force Base when Burke began striking his friend in the head. Read article

12 Occupy Minnesota Protesters Released from Jail

KallTV – A dozen Occupy Minnesota protesters were released from the Hennepin County Jail Sunday morning after being arrested for blocking traffic and being a public nuisance. Officers arrested 12 people around 11 p.m. Saturday near 9th Street and Nicollet Avenue. Read article

Bombing kills one in Kosovo

Reuters – An ethnic Albanian man was killed outside his home by a plastic explosive as tensions rise in Kosovo. Andrew Raven reports.

Record 87,897,000 Americans Not in the Labor Force

Breitbart – Amid disappointing unemployment numbers that fell 80,000 jobs short of projections, another number is raising eyebrows: the number of Americans not in the labor force has hit a record high 87,897,000. This figure explains why overall unemployment dropped from 8.3% to 8.2%, as the Department of Labor’s unemployment figure does not include people who have given up hope and are not actively seeking employment. Read Article

Study Debunks Common Myth That Urine Is Sterile

ScienceDaily — Researchers have determined that bacteria are present in the bladders of some healthy women, which discredits the common belief that normal urine is sterile. These findings were published in the April issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology by researchers at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (SSOM). “Doctors have been trained to believe that urine is germ-free,” said Linda Brubaker, MD, MS, dean, SSOM. “However, these findings challenge this notion, so this research may have positive implications for how we treat patients with urinary tract conditions in the future.” Read article

Selling You on Facebook

Wall St Journal – Many popular Facebook apps are obtaining sensitive information about users—and users’ friends—so don’t be surprised if details about your religious, political and even sexual preferences start popping up in unexpected places. Not so long ago, there was a familiar product called software. It was sold in stores, in shrink-wrapped boxes. When you bought it, all that you gave away was your credit card number or a stack of bills. Read Article

Mali President Toure resigns in deal with coup leaders

BBC – International mediator Djibril Bassole, Burkina Faso’s foreign minister, confirmed a letter of resignation had been submitted. The resignation paves the way for the coup leaders to step aside and the parliamentary speaker to take over. Read article

Nigerian Easter bomb kills many in Kaduna

BBC – At least 38 people have died in a car bombing in the northern Nigerian city of Kaduna, officials said. Many others were injured in the attack, which took place when officials stopped the vehicle as it approached a church. Just hours afterwards, a bomb exploded in the central city of Jos, injuring several people. No-one has admitted carrying out the bombings, but suspicion has fallen on Boko Haram, a militant group which had warned of attacks over Easter. Kaduna lies on the dividing line between Nigeria’s largely Christian south and Muslim north. Read Article

Climate Fact Of The Day – Precession & the Earth’s Climate

Source: http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/04/2940651780_0cd2e7edb1_o1.jpg

Precession – the slow and gradual shift of Earth’s axis through a 26,000-year cycle. When viewed from outside and looking down onto the Earth from the north, the direction of precession is clockwise. When standing on Earth looking outward, the axis appears to move counter-clockwise across the sky. I

US Government cuts cod limits for local fishermen by 22 percent

Boston – In a move that will bring increased hardship to an already struggling industry, federal regulators today substantially reduced the amount of cod local fishermen will be able to catch for the fishing season that begins next month. After a heated debate over the past few months pitting fishermen against environmental advocates who warned about the potential demise of the local cod population, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration cut the amount of cod fishermen in the Gulf of Maine can catch by more than 4 million pounds, or 22 percent less than in 2011. Read article

Related article: Overfishing ‘costs EU £2.7bn each year’; Study: Giving Local Fishermen Control Prevents Overfishing (Mostly)

Robbed and ruined by a British court on the orders of the CIA… and we couldn’t tell a soul: The chilling story of how secret justice cost a couple their £5m home – and £700m business

DailyMail – In an exclusive interview, Mrs Bentham told The Mail on Sunday how the CIA decided a civil court case about the Afghan mobile phone company he had helped to establish was too ‘sensitive’ to air in public. It used draconian legal powers to shut down the case – so destroying not only the Benthams’ livelihood, but any prospect of redress after Mr Bentham alleged the company had been stolen from him. Read article

DARPA Cheetah Sets Speed Record for Legged Robots

DARPA – This video shows a demonstration of the “Cheetah” robot galloping at speeds of up to 18 miles per hour (mph), setting a new land speed record for legged robots. The previous record was 13.1 mph, set in 1989.

Editorial – The Second Scramble For Africa

A hundred and thirty years since the last time Africa was carved up between outside powers history is repeating itself again. Africa is again being subjugated, this time by new players – The USA and China -but it is not imperial glory or the desire to proselytise and convert the heathen masses that drives this subtler but equally nefarious 21st century imperialism. Though the driving force today is far more basic, the tactics employed have hardly changed. To read our analysis of what is currently happening in Africa CLICK HERE

UK: Young unemployed may be forced to live with mum and dad

The Telegraph – The radical proposal is being worked on by Downing Street and the Department for Work and Pensions as part of a drive to make sure people are better off working than on benefits. At the moment, people under the age of 25 can get housing benefit to help pay the rent for bed-sits or rooms in shared accommodation if their wages and savings are below a certain level. Read Article

Iran halts Greek oil sales, may cut Shell supply

Market Watch – Iran has stopped shipping oil to Greece and may halt supplies to Royal Dutch Shell PLC over unpaid bills, Iran media said Friday, as the impact of sanctions widens. The news suggests a decline in Iranian oil exports last month may accelerate as banking sanctions add to an upcoming European ban on Tehran oil. That could lead to upward pressure on oil prices, which have recently surged to a four-year high. Read Article

Bankrupt Kodak Wants To Give 300 Execs $13.5 Million In Bonuses

Associated Press – Eastman Kodak Co. is seeking permission to pay about 300 executives and other employees a total of $13.5 million in bonuses to persuade them to stay with the company as it reorganizes under bankruptcy protection. The Rochester-based photography company said the targeted employees have knowledge and skills critical to help the business emerge from Chapter 11 and would be difficult to replace if they left to pursue other offers. Read Article

To Keep Protesters Away, Egypt’s Police Put Up Walls

NPR – Egypt’s revolution has brought with it unrest, including clashes in Cairo in the areas around the Interior Ministry, a hated symbol of the former regime. After five days of skirmishes in early February, Cairo’s police chiefs ordered the construction of a series of 10-foot walls, seven of them in all, to block off access to the ministry. Read Article

California warns of lost parent-child data

AFP – California officials on Friday warned that personal information about parents and children in its child support system was missing, putting those people at risk of identity theft. Stored data was being transferred from an IBM facility in the state of Colorado to California, and some devices holding information were missing upon arrival. Read Article

China Buys Inroads in the Caribbean, Catching U.S. Notice

NYTimes – China’s economic might has rolled up to America’s doorstep in the Caribbean, with a flurry of loans from state banks, investments by companies and outright gifts from the government in the form of new stadiums, roads, official buildings, ports and resorts in a region where the United States has long been a prime benefactor. The Chinese have flexed their economic prowess in nearly every corner of the world. But planting a flag so close to the United States has generated intense vetting — and some raised eyebrows — among diplomats, economists and investors. Read article

Violence dims Syria truce hopes, over 100 killed

Reuters – Syrian troops pounded opposition areas, activists said, killing 74 civilians in an offensive that has sent thousands of refugees surging into Turkey before next week’s U.N.-backed ceasefire aimed at staunching a year of bloodshed. At least 15 rebels and 17 security force members were also killed, raising the death toll in violence to over 100. Read Article

UK Retail insolvencies in first quarter jump 15 per cent

Independent – The number of retailers that collapsed into administration jumped by 15 per cent in the first quarter of this year, as the growth of online sales and the consumer downturn continued to hit weaker chains with too many stores. The bigger scale of the most recent high-profile retail failures also resulted in much deeper job losses on the high street than in the opening three months of 2011. Read Article

UK ‘exporting surveillance technology to repressive nations’

Guardian – Britain is exporting surveillance technology to countries run by repressive regimes, sparking fears it is being used to track political dissidents and activists. The UK’s enthusiastic role in the burgeoning but unregulated surveillance market is becoming an urgent concern for human rights groups, who want the government to ensure that exports are regulated in a similar way to arms. Read Article

Rendition ordeal that raises new questions about secret trials

Guardian – In 2004, Fatima Bouchar and her husband, Abdel Hakim Belhaj, were detained en route to the UK, and rendered to Libya. This is the story of their imprisonment, and the trail of evidence that reveals the involvement of the British government.  Just when Fatima Bouchar thought it couldn’t get any worse, the Americans forced her to lie on a stretcher and began wrapping tape around her feet. They moved upwards, she says, along her legs, winding the tape around and around, binding her to the stretcher. Read Article