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In this I will just add a few reports I've come across this morning while waking up, might add some more as they trickle in.
In the wake of the latest revelations of what everyone always knew, the largest press conference in the history of the United States has been planned for tomorrow in the Nationals Park baseball stadium in Washington, D.C. The powerful people lining up to apologize for having claimed the ongoing War on Iraq has had nothing to do with oil were deemed too numerous to gather in any indoor facility.
Former Congressman David Obey, who screamed at Congressman Dennis Kucinich in a Democratic caucus meeting for suggesting that oil might be one factor in the war, is currenly on a plane back to Washington to MC the mass apology. The line-up includes each major television, radio, and print news outlet in the United States. Select commentators, columnists, cartoonists, and talking heads of all varieties will represent each organization apologizing.
A year ago BP began filling the Gulf of Mexico with oil.
Last week BP blocked a woman from entering its annual meeting.
Which will prove the bigger mistake?
BP may have chosen the right country to hit with the worst oil disaster in world history. If there's any population that will take seeing its land and water destroyed for corporate profit lying down, it's got to be us. We're split between gratitude and indifference: should we thank BP or just stay out of its way?
By Missy Comley Beattie
I used to joke with my peace-movement friends, telling them I might self-immolate in front of the White House to make a statement about war. And, then, I’d laugh, saying there was just one glitch in the plan—I’d require so much Valium I’d be unable to strike the match.
For weeks, I’ve thought about a 26-year-old Tunisian man. Mohamed Bouazizi, educated, jobless, unable to feed his family, and desperate, doused himself with gasoline and died from his burns. This sacrificial act triggered the uprising in Tunisia and inspired other people across North Africa to do the same.
We are witness to revolution, civil wars, in which ordinary people are demanding basic rights.
Lately, I’ve been obsessing about the catastrophe of Fukushima, a crescendo of events as/more devastating than Chernobyl.
Yumi Kikuchi & Gen Morita are our good friends who live in Japan. They are anti-war & anti-nuclear activists who have done so much good work, both in Japan & internationally on these issues. Yumi & Gen translated "ADDICTED To WAR" into Japanese and were responsible for over 70,000 copies being sold in Japan. They also put Japanese subtitles on my film “What I’ve Learned About U. S. Foreign Policy” and screened it at the first ever Tokyo Peace Film Festival, which they organized. I could go on & on listing many of the things they have done to promote Peace in the world. Below is what they are asking us to do to help them now.
Veterans for Peace, Chapter 007 Los Angles, CA
The petition can be accessed through Yumi Kikuchi's blog below or contact her at email@example.com
By Charles M. Young
The prime minister of Japan has said that his government is “not in a position where we can be optimistic” about the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Is there any logical conclusion to draw from that statement other than that a large chunk of Japan is going to be uninhabitable?
They’ve got four nuclear reactors right next to each other in various states of disaster and probably meltdown. Two more are damaged. The workers on site are exhausted, sick and dying. The ocean and air around the plant are highly radioactive. The surrounding farms are producing radioactive vegetables. The drinking water in Tokyo is radioactive. If the Fukushima reactors keep exploding and burning and blowing radiation into the reservoirs, how long before Tokyo becomes Jonestown with a population of 13,000,000?
Cleaning up our environment is not only related to climate change, it means cleaning up the damage done, and in many cases known to be damaging by the businesses and corporations who caused it, all around us, especially that which kills over time, shorter times!
by Walter Brasch
There has been a lot in the news this past week.
Most important, if measured by getting most of the ink and air time, is the continuing soap opera, “Charlie and the CBS Factory.”
The latest in a seemingly never-ending story is that after Charlie Sheen melted down, was fired, and spread himself to every known television talk show, declaring himself to be a winner and announcing a $100 million forthcoming law suit against CBS for breech of contract, the president of CBS announced he wanted Sheen back in “Two and a Half Men.”
Details are to be worked out. CBS said it would work with creator/executive producer Chuck Lorre and producing studio Warner Brothers, The relationship among Sheen, Warner Bros., Lorre, and most of the cast and crew may be a bit more difficult since Sheen’s warm-and-friendly on-air persona didn’t match his vitriolic attacks upon his co-stars and anti-Semitic remarks about Lorre.
Warns Any Radiation Exposure Is Unsafe
Washington, DC - March 19, 2011 – Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) today called for a nationwide
moratorium on new nuclear reactors in the United States and a suspension of operations at the nuclear reactors with a similar design as those involved in the disaster in Japan, as well as those on fault lines. PSR cited the medical risks associated with any level of radiation exposure regardless of how small. Lower doses result in less chance of harm than higher doses, but any dose level can put an individual at risk.
By Linn Washington, Jr.
A timely report from the Union of Concerned Scientists, based on data from the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), contains troubling news about the state of America’s vast network of nuclear power plants.
The report, which examined serious incidents at 14 U.S. nuclear power plants nationwide from New York to California in 2010, finds fault with both plant operators and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission which is supposed to oversee them.
“Many of these significant events occurred because reactor owners and even the NRC tolerated known safety problems,” states the report, entitled: “The NRC and Nuclear Power Plant Safety in 2010: A Brighter Spotlight Needed.”
While none of the 14 safety incidents tagged in the Union’s report as “near misses” produced harm to nuclear plant employees or the public, the report terms the frequency of these incidents, which averaged more than one per month, “high for a mature industry.”
By Missy Comley Beattie
It’s blue here in Kentucky, true blue, a landscape of royal blue, this altar to basketball and home to the Kentucky Wildcats whose devotees are historically and hysterically frenzied for victory.
The same day I awakened to breaking news of breaking tectonic plates, breaking nuclear reactors, and breaking hearts, I left my sister Laura's house for exercise and heliotherapy. An elderly woman pushed her walker in the middle of a street, a man entered his house with a giant box of Pepsi Cola attached to his arm, and another person was at his mailbox. All were costumed in Big Blue fan-ery.
On Sunday, the Cats defeated the Florida Gators to win the SEC tournament. Often, during the action, we zipped to CNN’s coverage of Japan’s tsunami, earthquakes, and maybe-yes, maybe-no, Chernobyl-like meltdowns.
By Dave Lindorff
It seems rather silly now, doesn’t it, all the US concern about terrorism?
The nuclear crisis in Japan, which continues to worsen, threatens to become a total multiple meltdown, combined with the perhaps even more disastrous explosion and fire in one or several spent fuel rod ponds. If any of these things happen, not to mention many of them, several hundred square miles of Japan would be rendered indefinitely uninhabitable, costing hundreds of billions of dollars. And it could be worse. If the winds are blowing south during such a disaster, all of Tokyo, which has a metropolitan population of over 30 million, could have to be evacuated.
A study by the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission back in 1997, found that one spend fuel disaster could devastate almost 200 square miles of the US, and cause half a trillion dollars in damage!
The no-BS info on Japan's disastrous nuclear operators
By Greg Palast
I need to speak to you, not as a reporter, but in my former capacity as lead investigator in several government nuclear plant fraud and racketeering investigations.
Texas plants planned by Tokyo Electric. Image:NINA
I don't know the law in Japan, so I can't tell you if Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) can plead insanity to the homicides about to happen.
But what will Obama plead? The Administration, just months ago, asked Congress to provide a $4 billion loan guarantee for two new nuclear reactors to be built and operated on the Gulf Coast of Texas — by Tokyo Electric Power and local partners. As if the Gulf hasn't suffered enough.
Here are the facts about Tokyo Electric and the industry you haven't heard on CNN:
The failure of emergency systems at Japan's nuclear plants comes as no surprise to those of us who have worked in the field.
The Idiocy and Hubris of Engineers: Will GE Get Whacked for the Catastrophic Failure of its Nuke Plants in Fukushima?
By Dave Lindorff
GE, the company that boasts that it “brings good things to life,” was the designer of the nuclear plants that are blowing up like hot popcorn kernels at the Fukushima Daiichi generating plant north of Tokyo that was hit by the double-whammy of an 8.9 earthquake and a hugh tsunami.
The company may escape tens or hundreds of billions of dollars in liability from this continuing disaster, which could still result in a catastrophic total meltdown of one or more of the reactors (as of this writing three of the reactors are reported to have suffered partial meltdowns, and all could potentially become more serious total meltdowns with a rupture of the reactor container), thanks to Japanese law, which makes the operator--in this case Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) liable. But if it were found that it was design flaws by GE that caused the problem, presumably TEPCO or the Japanese government could pursue GE for damages.
Earlier today I posted up an article I found on one of my sites, this one related to the Green Economic growth going on mostly everywhere but here in the U.S., though here we are finally doing some things. I was going to leave it at that posting but low and behold I started streaming NPR and caught a related short interview with an author that wasn't directly related to Green but was about what we once had as an economy here in the States, which gives me the title.
Another Triumph for The Money Party Michael Collins
The gas price shock and awe is not evenly distributed. The Western states, New York, Illinois, and Nebraska are taking the biggest hits. There's some explanation for this but not a very good one. All that matters is taking as much in extra profits as possible while the extraordinary events in Libya and the rest of the region allow a plausible storyline. This time, democracy is the villain.
By Linn Washington, Jr.
Philadelphia--Charlene Scott cheered and chanted with the hundreds thronging Philadelphia’s Love Park during Saturday's protest against conservative Republican onslaughts seeking to slaughter what remains of the living-standard comforts enjoyed by middle and working-class Americans.
But Scott had a different perspective than most attending that demonstration, which had been organized largely to voice solidarity with public workers in Wisconsin now confronting calculated attacks against their collective bargaining rights from that state’s Tea Party-aligned Republican governor.
Scott said she had seen this onslaught coming ten years ago.
“When I saw jobs moving off-shore, banks lowering interest rates on personal accounts and governments passing more charges onto taxpayers I knew this was coming,” Scott said.
By Daniel Malloy, Post-Gazette Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON -- Criminal investigators sent an unmistakably aggressive signal in probing the fatal Upper Big Branch mine explosion Monday with the arrest of a top security official on a pair of felony charges.
As part of a continuing grand jury investigation, Hughie Elbert Stover, 60, the head of security for Massey Energy subsidiary Performance Coal Co., was arrested at his home in Raleigh County, W.Va., and charged with making false statements to federal agents and obstructing a federal investigation. The grand jury, which has been meeting for months in Charleston, W.Va., indicted him last week.
The April 5, 2010, explosion killed 29 men, the deadliest mine disaster in four decades. Mr. Stover is the first person to be charged in the criminal probe, and the grand jury's work appears to be far from finished.
A Chinese man works at a photovoltaic power plant built with Japanese help in Xining in northwest China's Qinghai province, 11 June 2008. The 300kw solar panel power plant is the first to be connected to the local power grid. | EPA/ANGHAI JIN
27 February 2011 - Investing 2% of global GDP a year, could lead to a green and sustainable future, one that will outshine predictions of GDP growth under the current economic model.
February 23, 2011 - At the National Press Club Wednesday morning, scientists showed a video of an ocean teeming with wildlife: colorful coral, crabs, sea anemone and bright orange starfish.
The video underscored some not-so-new, but still sobering, news. If trends continue unchecked, our ocean may soon be robbed of its rich coral reefs and many of the 4,000 fish species that depend on them.
Some 75 percent of the world's reefs are facing the threat of extinction, and absent major changes, that number will rise to 90 percent by 2030, and reach 100 percent by 2050, according to a new analysis released Wednesday.
I just caught this a short while ago and just in time to stream most of the press conference, without even finishing my first pot of coffee.
Did some searching and found a couple of reports, more are being added as I type this, as well as the UNEP site page with the full report broken down in sections to download, read and study.
One doesn't need to believe in 'Climate Change', using the label 'global warming' in a simplistic way to feed the detraction of the obvious, detractors of advancing technologies and individual advancements and dreams have always been around. Developing, long over due and argued about, the technologies and finding the possible new means to the goals of a cleaner planet and cleaner living are just the same as any advancements man has made as we've evolved.
What the detractors, whether they believe the obvious or not and the flock just follows what they're told, are effectively locking the brakes on what we once were and envied around this planet, innovators in moving forward with the new idea's, interstate roadways, flying, etc. etc. etc. and with the same innovative workforce that made the advancements reality with everyone following in trying to catch up. Now those everyone's are leading and we aren't even following much, like as to energy innovations and a cleaner planet, even so called third world countries are moving ahead of us on the obvious human advancements!
Rear Admiral David W. Titley, Oceanographer and Navigator of the Navy (Photo: U.S.Navy)
By Dave Lindorff
I never expected to find myself agreeing with Sarah Palin, but I’ve got to admit that the woman nailed it regarding President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address. Asked to comment on it, she said it had a lot of “WTF moments.”
That’s exactly what I found myself thinking as I read through it!
We’ve “broken the back” of the recession? WTF? The official unemployment rate is still 9.4%, and even that is down slightly from a 9.8% high only because so many people have given up trying to find a job and have left the workforce, taking early retirement or just staying home. And the real unemployment rate--the one that counts those who have given up but would work if there were actually jobs to be had, and those who have grasped at part time work just to survive--is still at between 19% and 22%, depending on how you’re counting. Who’s Obama kidding: us or himself?
Final Report - 1/11/2011 (Washington D.C.). Preventing another oil spill.
A Press conference was held at the National Press Club on 11 January 2011 at 10AM and lasted a little over an hour with statements at the beginning and refreshingly, considering what we usually get in our so called political discourse and from the journalism profession, intelligent questions and answers following.
By Dave Lindorff
Democracy: de-moc-ra-cy, government by the people; the common people of a community, as distinguished from any privileged class
According to the latest poll conducted by CBS "60 Minutes" and the magazine Vanity Fair, 61 percent of Americans want to raise taxes on the wealthy as the primary way to cut the budget. The same poll finds that the second most popular first choice for cutting the nation's budget deficit, at 20 percent, is cutting the military budget. That is, 81 percent of us--four out of five--would cut the deficit by taxing the rich and/or slashing military spending.
Only four percent of those polled favored cutting Medicare, the government-run program that provides health care for the elderly and disabled, and only three percent favored cutting Social Security.
By Cynthia McKinney
Since 2008, both the Bush and Obama Administrations spent hundreds of billions - by some estimates, up to TRILLIONS - of dollars bailing out Wall Street investors, banks and industrial firms. Much was said about the need to provide a stimulus to the economy, with the public understanding that job creation would follow the infusion of cash into these sectors. But thus far, there has been little impact on unemployment, and there is no light at the end of the tunnel for the unemployed.
With the infusion of so much public money into these sectors came the possibility of structural change. The government was in the driver's seat, the public was heavily invested in finance and industry, and policy in those sectors - i.e., policy in such critical areas as transportation - could now be set by the people.
Butt that hasn't happened, as we all know. And this past week, the possibility of real change in the transportation sector faded into the background.