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Executive Producer: Massimo Cattaneo
Special 31313 Executive Producers: Willy Theunissen, Piotr Ciszewski
Associate Executive Producers: Todd Brink, John White
Knighthoods: Dame Suzanne
Art By: Thoren
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"This number does not replace the official 1 in 88 estimate, but does suggest that it may be a significant underestimate of autism prevalence in the U.S.," says Autism Speaks Associated Director of Public Health Research Michael Rosanoff, M.P.H. "One in fifty, or 2 percent, is much closer to what we've seen from research that involves directly screening children in the community."
Professor of Psychology and Neurobiology
Director; Imaging Research Center
Syrians face a new level of ruthlessness from the Asad regime, which is raining Scud missiles down on residential neighborhoods, destroying hospitals and schools, and sending its thugs rampaging through the streets to terrorize their fellow citizens. The carnage is appalling. For instance, we have heard that some Syrian parents who still send their children to school now stitch their child's name on school uniforms. That makes it easier to identify the bodies.
We supplied approximately 5,000 pieces of equipment, including communications gear, to enable activists to coordinate their efforts. Some activists used these tools to organize a Free Lawyer's Union, which now coordinates with the Local Council for the Governorate of Daraa and has taken responsibility for legal affairs within the local council.
We boosted radio signals, extending the reach of broadcast on FM stations, and funded media outlets. Then we used those media platforms to address sectarian violence and issue public service messages on chemical weapons exposure.
We also trained and equipped 1,500 local leaders and activists -- including women and minorities -- from over 100 Syrian opposition provincial councils. These graduates are improving the ability of local committees and councils from Damascus to Deir al-Zour to Idlib to better provide for the needs of all members of their communities. One recent graduate played a critical role in the Aleppo LCC elections last week. He reached out to 240 delegates across Aleppo's liberated areas and broadcast the election -- bringing credibility, transparency, and accountability to the process.
Wed, 20 Mar 2013 22:33
Quarterly Critical Infrastructure Partnership Advisory Council Membership Update.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the establishment of the Critical Infrastructure Partnership Advisory Council (CIPAC) in a Federal Register Notice (71 FR 14930-14933) dated March 24, 2006, which identified the purpose of CIPAC, as well as its membership. This notice provides: (i) Quarterly CIPAC membership updates; (ii) instructions on how the public can obtain the CIPAC membership roster and other information on the council; and (iii) information on recently completed CIPAC meetings.
Larry May, Designated Federal Officer, Critical Infrastructure Partnership Advisory Council, Sector Outreach and Programs Division, Office of Infrastructure Protection, National Protection and Programs Directorate, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, 245 Murray Lane, Mail Stop 0607, Arlington, VA 20598-0607; by telephone: (703) 603-5070; or via email at: CIPAC@dhs.gov. Responsible DHS Official: Larry May, Designated Federal Officer for the CIPAC.
Purpose and Activity: The CIPAC facilitates interaction between government officials and representatives of the community of owners and/or operators for each of the critical infrastructure sectors defined by Presidential Policy Directive (PPD) 21 and identified in the National Infrastructure Protection Plan. The scope of activities covered by the CIPAC includes planning; coordinating among government and critical infrastructure owner and operator security partners; implementing security program initiatives; conducting operational activities related to critical infrastructure protection security measures, incident response, recovery, and infrastructure resilience; reconstituting critical infrastructure assets and systems for both manmade as well as naturally occurring events; and sharing threat, vulnerability, risk mitigation, and infrastructure continuity information.
Organizational Structure: CIPAC members are organized into 16 critical infrastructure sectors. Each of these sectors has a government coordinating council (GCC) whose membership includes (i) a lead Federal agency that is defined as the Sector-Specific Agency; (ii) all relevant Federal, state, local, tribal, and/or territorial government agencies (or their representative bodies) whose mission interests also involve the scope of the CIPAC activates for that particular sector; and (iii) a sector coordinating council (SCC) whose membership includes critical infrastructure owners and/or operators or their representative trade associations.
CIPAC Membership: CIPAC Membership may include:
(i) Critical Infrastructure owner and/or operator members of their respective sector's DHS-recognized Sector Coordinating Council, including their representative trade or equivalent organizations as determined by the sector;
(ii) Federal, state, local, and tribal governmental entities comprising the members of the GCC for each sector, including their representative trade or equivalent organizations.
CIPAC membership is organizational. Multiple individuals may participate in CIPAC activities on behalf of a member as long as member representatives are not Federally registered lobbyists.
CIPAC Membership Roster and Council Information: The current roster of CIPAC members is published on the CIPAC Web site (http://www.dhs.gov/cipac) and is updated as the CIPAC membership changes. Members of the public may visit the CIPAC Web site at any time to view current CIPAC membership as well as the current and historic list of CIPAC meetings and agendas.
Dated: March 8, 2013.
Designated Federal Officer for the CIPAC.
[FR Doc. 2013-06298 Filed 3-18-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 9110-9P-P
Wed, 20 Mar 2013 21:03
LONDON -- Even cyberwar has rules, and one group of experts is putting out a manual to prove it.
Their handbook, due to be published later this week, applies the practice of international law to the world of electronic warfare in an effort to show how hospitals, civilians and neutral nations can be protected in an information-age fight.
"Everyone was seeing the Internet as the `Wild, Wild West,'" U.S. Naval War College Professor Michael Schmitt, the manual's editor, said in an interview before its official release. "What they had forgotten is that international law applies to cyberweapons like it applies to any other weapons."
The Tallinn Manual -- named for the Estonian capital where it was compiled -- was created at the behest of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence, a NATO think tank. It takes existing rules on battlefield behavior, such as the 1868 St. Petersburg Declaration and the 1949 Geneva Convention, to the Internet, occasionally in unexpected ways.
Marco Roscini, who teaches international law at London's University of Westminster, described the manual as a first-of-its-kind attempt to show that the laws of war -- some of which date back to the 19th century -- were flexible enough to accommodate the new realities of online conflict.
The 282-page handbook has no official standing, but Roscini predicted that it would be an important reference as military lawyers across the world increasingly grapple with what to do about electronic attacks.
"I'm sure it will be quite influential," he said.
The manual's central premise is that war doesn't stop being war just because it happens online. Hacking a dam's controls to release its reservoir into a river valley can have the same effect as breaching it with explosives, its authors argue.
Legally speaking, a cyberattack that sparks a fire at a military base is indistinguishable from an attack that uses an incendiary shell.
The humanitarian protections don't disappear online either. Medical computers get the same protection that brick-and-mortar hospitals do. The personal data related to prisoners of war has to be kept safe in the same way that the prisoners themselves are -- for example by having the information stored separately from military servers that might be subject to attack.
Cyberwar can lead to cyberwar crimes, the manual warned. Launching an attack from a neutral nation's computer network is forbidden in much the same way that hostile armies aren't allowed to march through a neutral country's territory. Shutting down the Internet in an occupied area in retaliation for a rebel cyberattack could fall afoul of international prohibitions on collective punishment.
The experts behind the manual -- two dozen officers, academics, and researchers drawn mainly from NATO states -- didn't always agree on how traditional rules applied in a cyberwar.
Self-defense was a thorny issue. International law generally allows nations to strike first if they spot enemy soldiers about to pour across the border, but how could that be applied to a world in which attacks can happen at the click of a mouse?
Other aspects of international law seemed obsolete -- or at least in need of an upgrade -- in the electronic context.
Soldiers are generally supposed to wear uniforms and carry their arms openly, for example, but what relevance could such a requirement have when they are hacking into distant targets from air-conditioned office buildings?
The law also forbids attacks on "civilian objects," but the authors were divided as to whether the word "object" could be interpreted to mean "data." So that may leave a legal loophole for a military attack that erases valuable civilian data, such as a nation's voter registration records.
The Tallinn Manual: http://www.ccdcoe.org/249.html
(C) Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 07:58
21 March 2013Last updated at07:34 ETA surreptitious scan of the entire internet has revealed millions of printers, webcams and set-top boxes protected only by default passwords.
An anonymous researcher used more than 420,000 of these insecure devices to test the security and responsiveness of other gadgets, in a nine-month survey.
Using custom-written code, they sent out more than four trillion messages.
The net's current addressing scheme accommodates about 4.2 billion devices. Only 1.3 billion addresses responded.
The number of addresses responding was a surprise as the pool of addresses for that scheme has run dry. As a result, the net is currently going through a transition to a new scheme that has a vastly larger pool of addresses available.
The scan found half a million printers, more than one million webcams and lots of other devices, including set-top boxes and modems, that still used the password installed in the factory, letting almost anyone take over that piece of hardware. Often the password was an easy to guess word such as "root" or "admin".
"Whenever you think, 'That shouldn't be on the internet, but will probably be found a few times,' it's there a few hundred thousand times," wrote the un-named researcher in a paper documenting their work.
HD Moore, who carried out a similar survey in 2012, told the Ars Technica news website the results looked "pretty accurate".
He added he had seen malicious hackers exploiting the security failings of these devices to run criminal networks known as botnets that are used to send out spam, mount phishing attacks and bombard websites with deluges of data.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 07:48
A landmark document created at the request of NATO has proposed a set of rules for how international cyberwarfare should be conducted. Written by 20 experts in conjunction with the International Committee of the Red Cross and the US Cyber Command, the Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare analyzes the rules of conventional war and applies them to state-sponsored cyberattacks.
Unsurprisingly, the manual advises that attacks must avoid targets such as hospitals, dams, and nuclear power stations in order to minimize civilian casualties, but also makes some bold statements regarding retaliatory conduct. According to the manual's authors, it's acceptable to retaliate against cyberattacks with traditional weapons when a state can prove the attack lead to death or severe property damage. It also says that hackers who perpetrate attacks are legitimate targets for a counterstrike.
"There's plenty of law that applies to cyberspace."
Project leader Professor Michael Schmitt, the Chairman of the International Law Department at the United States Naval War College, tells The Guardian that countries "can only use force when you reach the level of armed conflict," explaining that in most cases the appropriate response to a cyberattack would be digital retaliation. "Everyone talks about cyberspace as though it's the wild west," says Schmitt, "we discovered that there's plenty of law that applies to cyberspace."
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 04:16
The Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare, written at the invitation of the Centre by an independent'International Group of Experts', is the result of a three-year effort to examine how extant international law norms apply to this 'new' form of warfare. The Tallinn Manual pays particular attention to the jus ad bellum, the international law governing the resort to force by States as an instrument of their national policy, and the jus in bello, the international law regulating the conduct of armed conflict (also labelled the law of war, the law of armed conflict, or international humanitarian law). Related bodies of international law, such as the law of State responsibility and the law of the sea, are dealt within the context of these topics.
The Tallinn Manual is not an official document, but instead an expression of opinions of a group of independent experts acting solely in their personal capacity. It does not represent the views of the Centre, our Sponsoring Nations, or NATO. It is also not meant to reflect NATO doctrine. Nor does it reflect the position of any organization or State represented by observers.
The Tallinn Manual is available in both paper and electronic copies from Cambridge University Press ((C) Cambridge University Press 2013). We have also made the book available for reading and research below.
We also recommend reading Professor Michael N. Schmitt's article "International Law in Cyberspace: The Koh Speech and Tallinn Manual Juxtaposed", published in the Harvard International Law Journal.
Open publication - Free publishing - More cyber
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 07:26
Washington (dpa) - The U.S. State Department Wednesday offered separate 5-million-dollar rewards for information on either of two U.S. citizens who were said to be members of the radical Islamist al-Shabab militia in Somalia.
The two men are Omar Shafik Hammami, formerly of Alabama, and Jehad Serwan Mostafa, formerly of California.
Hammami, 28, moved to Somalia in 2006, where he has served as a military commander and propaganda rap artist, the U.S. State Department said. He was indicted in the U.S. federal court in Alabama in 2009 on charges of providing support to terrorists.
Hammami is on the FBI's most wanted terrorist list and has used the aliases Abu Mansour al-Amriki and Farouk.
Mostafa, age about 30, left for Somalia in 2005 and was indicted on similar charges to those of Hammami in California in 2009. He has used the aliases Ahmed Gurey, Anwar al-Amriki, and Emir Anwar, the State Department said.
The United States classifies al-Shabab as a terrorist organization, and says it is a threat to U.S. national security interests and stability in East Africa.
Al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for a series of bomb attacks in Somalia since 2006. The U.S. says the group is to blame for the deaths of thousands of citizens, peace activists, international aid workers and journalists.
In recent months, the Islamist rebels have been on the back-foot, ceding ground in central and southern Somalia to government forces and African Union troops. But they have still managed to stage attacks in key locations and maintain control over vast rural areas.
Somalia was plunged into chaos two decades ago. Last year a proper government was formed in a United Nations-backed attempt to bring stability to the Horn of Africa nation.
(C) Copyright 2013 Deutsche Presse-Agentur. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 07:48
GovTrack's Bill SummaryWe don't have a summary available yet.
Library of Congress SummaryThe summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
No summary available.
House Republican Conference SummaryThe summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.
No summary available.
House Democratic Caucus SummaryThe House Democratic Caucus does not provide summaries of bills.
So, yes, we display the House Republican Conference's summaries when available even if we do not have a Democratic summary available. That's because we feel it is better to give you as much information as possible, even if we cannot provide every viewpoint.
We'll be looking for a source of summaries from the other side in the meanwhile.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 08:11
Nick Clegg said the whole point of the Leveson design was 'to avoid heavy-handed state regulation and government going in with both boots and imposing things'. Photograph: Barcroft Media
Nick Clegg has appealed to newspapers to join the new system of press regulation, saying he hoped they would accept that it was one of self-regulation with incentives.
The deputy prime minister said some in the industry had reacted in a "slightly melodramatic" way to the proposals, which were agreed in parliament on Monday.
Speaking on LBC radio, he said: "Of course I understand how passions run strong on this subject but I do hope, as the dust settles, people will see that what we adhered to across parties and with an overwhelming majority in parliament is the basic design of Leveson of self-regulation with incentives."
It was the first time Clegg had commented since parliament backed a royal charter, exemplary damages and a proposal to underpin the charter by a form of statute. Large sections of the newspaper industry have indicated that they are unlikely to co-operate, leaving parliament and the coalition with a dilemma over how to respond.
The Liberal Democrat leader said: "The whole point of the Leveson design is to avoid heavy-handed state regulation and government going in with both boots and imposing things. The aim was to create a system of incentives, and those incentives are: for those newspapers who don't participate in the system the courts will be able to impose exemplary costs and damages." He described this as a "pounds and pence incentive".
He denied that the late-night meeting in Ed Miliband's office on Sunday attended by members of Hacked Off '' but not the press '' was a critical moment in the talks. The presence of the campaign group for victims of press intrusion, Oliver Letwin, Clegg and Miliband has led to claims that the media were excluded from the decisive summit.
He said the meeting "had focused on technical legal definitions of what represented exemplary damages. It dealt with a tiny, tiny piece of the jigsaw '' how you define exemplary damages. It was about filling in one piece of the canvas."
He said there had been many other meetings with the newspaper industry, including a large number that Hacked Off had not attended.
He said: "The central and only point that was remaining late on being discussed on Sunday night '' and by the way I left before midnight '' was this highly technical and legalistic argument of the wording on exemplary damages.
"If this was the great papal conclave where everything was resolved from top to bottom then of course everyone should be there or frankly no one should be there '' neither the press nor Hacked Off."
He said he did not know who had asked Hacked Off to the meeting.
Clegg said the old regulatory system under the Press Complaints Commission "had descended into a complete farce because the newspapers that got into trouble was judge and jury on itself".
"In some senses they have reacted in a slightly melodramatic manner. The model of Leveson to which we adhere remains self-regulation, but self-regulation that you can believe in.
"We are not imposing regulations on the press; we are saying the press set up a self-regulation system but that body is checked every two or three years to ensure it is really independent of the press and is a system that can help innocent people who have been unjustifiably bullied and intimidated so they have a recourse."
Tue, 19 Mar 2013 07:24
Protests from industry as David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband agree to create powerful regulator in late-night talks
The press regulation deal has left much of the newspaper industry dismayed. Photograph: Paul Hackett/Reuters
A shellshocked newspaper industry was struggling to come to terms with a sudden all-party agreement to create a powerful new press regulator designed to prevent a repeat of the phone-hacking scandal.
The independent regulator will have powers to impose fines and demand prominent corrections, and courts will be allowed to impose exemplary damages on newspapers that fail to join the body.
All three party leaders hailed the "historic" deal, sealed in extraordinary late-night talks on Sunday in the office of the Labour leader Ed Miliband after months of wrangling, but many of the country's leading newspaper publishers were ominously wary.
Some Conservative MPs accused David Cameron of running up the white flag and the former Tory cabinet minister Peter Lilley urged newspapers to boycott the new system '' an option being actively considered by some media groups.
The newspapers are furious that Cameron's policy adviser, the Cabinet Office minister Oliver Letwin, sealed the deal at 2.30am on Monday morning in Miliband's office, accompanied by Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg and four members of the victims' group Hacked Off.
No 10 was forced to say that Cameron had not been asleep in the early hours and that the critical aspects of the deal had been settled the previous afternoon in face-to-face talks between Clegg and Cameron.
Under the deal, the newspaper industry has lost its power to veto appointments to the body that will replace the Press Complaints Commission, the previous regulator discredited by its failure to investigate phone hacking by leading newspapers.
David Cameron urged the newspaper industry to sign up quickly to the agreement by setting up the new regulator. "It is a neat solution. It is not a panacea," he said.
Quoting the Labour MP Gerald Kaufman, the prime minister said: "It is closing time in the last chance saloon. This replaces a failed regulatory system with one that will work because it has some real independence at its heart and is going to be properly overseen without allowing parliament to endlessly interfere." But he stressed that the new royal charter only sets up the body to recognise the regulator, and it remains a voluntary choice for the industry to decide whether to set up the system of independent regulation.
If newspapers refuse to co-operate with the regulator, or set up a body that is not accepted by the new recognition panel, they will be more liable to exemplary damages in the event that they recklessly publish inaccurate stories.
In a statement, Associated Newspapers, News International, the Telegraph Media Group and the Express's publishers, Northern & Shell, said they would be taking "high-level legal advice" before deciding if they could join the new watchdog. The deal, they said, raised several deeply contentious issues.
"No representative of the newspaper and magazine industry had any involvement in, or indeed any knowledge of, the cross-party talks on press regulation that took place on Sunday night," they said. "We have only late this afternoon seen the royal charter that the political parties have agreed between themselves and, more pertinently, the recognition criteria, early drafts of which contained several deeply contentious issues which have not yet been resolved with the industry."
Downing Street sought to reassure small-scale web-based news providers and blogs that they would not be required to co-operate with the new regulatory system. No 10 said bloggers, tweeters, news aggregators and social networking sites such as Facebook or Twitter, as well as special interest titles, would be excluded, but there was concern that a workable definition of these would be difficult to come up with.
Cameron switched from a stance of defiance last Thursday to apparent capitulation on a range of points over the weekend.
Major parts of the newspaper industry have issues with the statute that would be laid down to guarantee that no change could be made to the royal charter, along with worries over the proposals to empower the regulator to force apologies. They are also strongly opposed to the notion that, for the first time, people from outside the industry would be involved in drawing up the newspaper code of practice, a code that has been widely praised and has been adapted by regulators in other countries.
"This is a political deal between the three parties and Hacked Off. It is not a deal with the newspapers," said one senior executive in one newspaper group.
Associated Newspapers, News International and the Telegraph Media Group had been exploring the possibility of boycotting the government-sanctioned regulator and setting up their own body if they believed it could threaten freedom of the press.
This is still "very much a live discussion", said one source. "Nobody is threatening it, or saying we will do it, but we won't be making a decision before we have had high-level legal advice," said the insider, who claimed that the existence of a "no change" statute to guarantee that the royal charter could not be amended by the privy council still opened the door to political interference.
Alan Rusbridger, the Guardian's editor-in-chief, gave a cautious welcome to the deal. He said: "We welcome the fact that there has been cross-party agreement. The regulatory settlement is by and large a fair one, with compromises on all sides. We retain grave reservations about the proposed legislation on exemplary damages. The agreed terms are not ideal but after two years of inquiry and debate we finally have the prospect of what the public wants - a robust regulator that is independent of both press and politics. It's a big improvement on what went before."
A second senior executive said the industry had already been advised that the proposal that the regulatory body could force newspapers into making apologies it did not agree would be illegal, as it would be contrary to article 10 of the European convention of human rights which protects freedom of speech. The editor of the Independent, Chris Blackhurst, said the proposed regulator "isn't perfect, but neither is it terrible", and said he did not think it would threaten journalism at his paper.
Views hardened within larger newspaper groups as the implications of a deal began to sink in, with Tim Jotischky, the deputy editor of the Telegraph, tweeting late on Monday: "We can never lecture a Mugabe or a Putin on freedom of expression again. Quite an achievement for Hacked Off et al."
The Newspaper Society condemned the deal for placing what it said was a "crippling burden" on the UK's 1,100 local newspapers. Adrian Jeakings, president of the society and chief executive of Archant, one of the biggest local newspaper publishers, said the political deal "completely ignores the Leveson recommendations on the local press" and opened an arbitration system that could affect the viability of local papers.
The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) '' representing 57 member states '' warned that the new regulator could threaten freedom of expression in the UK. Dunja Mijatovic, the OSCE's representative on freedom of the media,urged Britain not to sacrifice its tradition of press self-regulation, which was regarded around the world as best practice.
"A government-established regulatory body, regardless of how independent it is intended to be, could pose a threat to media freedom," she said, adding that the phone-hacking scandal was a "criminal issue" which was being dealt with through prosecutions in the criminal courts. "This should not be used as an excuse to rein in all print media," she said.
Clegg's office rounded on Cameron, saying: "If it looks chaotic that Letwin was meeting members of Hacked Off in Ed Miliband's office at 2am to discuss press regulation, that is because it was chaotic. It is chaotic because the prime minister walked out of the talks unilaterally on Thursday rather than sitting down and having sensible discussions. We have ended up where we hoped, and expected."
Harriet Harman, the shadow culture secretary and Labour's lead negotiator, hailed the concessions extracted from Cameron since last week. She said: "What changed after Thursday is we got free arbitration, with a small narrowing of the route into arbitration, to reassure the regional press, we got the direction of apologies and corrections, we got abandonment of the veto on the appointment to the board of the regulator, and there is a role for working journalists in the writing of the code. We also got them to accept the amendment tabled by Lord Wilf Stevenson entrenching the Royal Charter for the press. We have been storming along."
She also defended Labour's insistence on staying close to campaigners saying: "Hacked Off gave the victims of press intrusion a support network of protection to the victims '' people that have been previously isolated and frightened. Hacked Off allowed them no longer to be victims, but agents for change. We have had hour after hour after hour of meetings with them to make sure we are all moving together. When you are working with people from outside Westminster you have to do politics in a completely different way."
(C) Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved.
Tue, 19 Mar 2013 07:22
On 18 March 2013, the deputy editor of the Telegraph, tweeted: "We can never again lecture a Mugabe or a Putin on freedom of expression."The UK parliament (some of whom are allegedly "a bunch of child abusers and fascists") has agreed to the setting up of a powerful new press regulator designed to prevent the public from learning that some of our leaders may be "a bunch of child abusers and fascists."The independent regulator (expected to be run by the CIA and its friends) will have powers to impose fines and demand prominent corrections, and courts will be allowed to impose exemplary damages on newspapers that fail to join the body.All three party leaders hailed the 'historic' deal, sealed in the office of the Labour leader Ed Miliband, whose father was a Polish-Jewish-Marxist.
LetwinThe deal was sealed by Prime Minister David Cameron's policy adviser, the Cabinet Office minister Oliver Letwin, a Jewish gentleman who has worked for the Rothschilds.
The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) - representing 57 member states - warned that the new regulator could threaten freedom of expression in the UK.Newspapers bridle at 'historic' deal on press regulation
Of course, the CIA and its friends already control the key position in the UK media.
In 1995, the actor Hugh Grant was arrested for soliciting prostitute Divine Brown.One of those who campaigned for stricter regulation of the press is the actor Hugh Grant.
"The press should now take revenge and never print one single word about Hugh Grant, his movies, his life, his friends or anything else. No matter how much he begs for the publicity he craves when it suits him. Just say No!"- stevie-boy , Angeles-City, Philippines, 19/3/2013 05:27
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.
Tue, 19 Mar 2013 09:05
Tesco workers are being made to wear electronic armbands that managers can use to grade how hard they are working.
A former staff member has claimed employees are given marks based on how efficiently they work in a bid to improve productivity and can be called in front of management if they take unscheduled toilet breaks.
The armbands are worn by warehouse staff and forklift drivers, who use them to scan the stock they collect from supermarket distribution points and send it out for delivery. Tesco said the armbands are used to improve efficiency and save its staff from having to carry around pens and paper to keep track of deliveries. But the device is also being used to keep an eye on employees' work rates, the ex-staff member said.
The former employee said the device provided an order to collect from the warehouse and a set amount of time to complete it. If workers met that target, they were awarded a 100 per cent score, but that would rise to 200 per cent if they worked twice as quickly. The score would fall if they did not meet the target.
If, however, workers did not log a break when they went to the toilet, the score would be ''surprisingly lower'', according to the former staff member, who did not want to be named but worked in an Irish branch of Tesco. He said that some would be called before management if they were not deemed to be working hard enough.
''The guys who made the scores were sweating buckets and throwing stuff around the place,'' he said. He said the devices put staff under huge pressure and many of his colleagues using them in Ireland were eastern Europeans, with limited English. He said lunch breaks did not result in staff being marked down. Tesco confirmed that the devices were also in use across its UK stores.
Tesco in Ireland told the Irish Independent that a ''break'' function could be used to register genuine stoppages and around 25 minutes had been allowed per day for that. But any other time would be monitored.
A Tesco spokesman told The Independent: ''Arm-mounted terminals are a working aid and at no time are they used to monitor colleagues while on their breaks. They make it easier for our colleagues to carry out their role as they don't need to carry paperwork around the distribution centre.''
According to one expert, the laws surrounding surveillance at work give employers a lot of liberty. But Peter Daly, a solicitor at Bindmans LLP, added that firms risked possible lawsuits if employees felt they were being discriminated against.
He said: ''There is not a huge problem with surveillance itself as far as the law is concerned, the issue is the data that is taken from it. In principle, there is nothing stopping you watching what your members of staff do; huge numbers of workplaces keep their CCTV footage for a long time, for example.
''With this information, there is a question about how it is stored, what it is stored for and whether people can understand it. If this is personal information, then the subjects are entitled to receive it under the Data Protection Act. Employers should be careful'... because it could potentially be disclosed in a discrimination claim.''
Read More: Here
Thanks for responding to the email I sent a week or so ago. I'm in the middle of listening to the March 17th No Agenda show and I heard you and John talking about Cymbalta. I was put on Cymbalta a few years ago for pain that comes from being hit by a car while walking across the street back in '02. It didn't seem to do anything for my pain, but I did notice that after the 30 days or so it supposedly takes to kick in, I started feeling incredibly sad all the time, and crying for no reason. It was insane. What was worse, however, was that I blacked out once because of it and started (according to my girlfriend at the time) running around the house smashing things and then I fell on the floor out cold. She told me when she asked me what I took when I dropped to the floor and apparently I said "werewolves and vampires." I stopped taking it the next day.
Another thing they try to use to stop pain (though that's not what it was developed for) is Lyrica. I was put on that too and the first day I took it, it gave me a Gran Mal Seizure. I don't have a history of seizures and haven't had one since I stopped taking it, yet they don't mention a risk of seizures in the material or commercials. Crazy.
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 04:20
Rinviato il voto sulla tassadi solidariet . Banche chiusefino a giovedÂ
Per fare un paragone, ¬ come se in Italia si trattasse di trovare in due giorni 2000 miliardi per salvare le banche. Per tappare un buco del sistema bancario da 17 miliardi - somma pari al prodotto interno lordo del paese, che vale lo 0,2% del Pil dell'Ue - Cipro ha ottenuto un piano da 10 miliardi ai partner europei, il problema ¬ che quasi 6 miliardi verranno prelevati dai conti correnti bancari. Una mossa disperata che ha gettato l'isola di Afrodite nel marasma. E rischia di mettere in moto una nuova tempesta finanziaria in tutta Eurolandia. Noi italiani ci siamo gi passati. Era la notte tra il 9 e il 10 luglio del 1992, quando l'allora presidente del Consiglio Giuliano Amato decretÓ un prelievo sui conti correnti bancari del 6 per mille. facile immaginare lo shock che ha prodotto nella Repubblica di Cipro l'annuncio di un prelievo che arriva al 6,75% sui depositi fino a 100mila euro, e del 9,9% su quelli di consistenza superiore. In cambio, teoricamente, si riceveranno azioni delle banche salvate, a valere sui proventi futuri (ma ancora tutti da realizzare) dei giacimenti di gas da poco scoperti in mare. E gi contesi dalla vicina Turchia.
La misura - il prelievo di solidariet >> - era stata ventilata e mille volte smentita nei giorni precedenti; cosÂ pare che tra mercoledÂ e venerdÂ siano stati prelevati 4,5 miliardi dai conti bancari. E in queste ore infuria la polemica: i giornali e la rete lanciano accuse verso personaggi vicini alla Presidenza della Repubblica e al governo. Avrebbero saputo prima del provvedimento, mettendo in salvo i loro patrimoni. Non sar vero ma ¬ verosimile. Per tutti gli altri non c'¬ stato nulla da fare: anche se sabato e domenica in tantissimi si sono messi in fila ai bancomat per sottrarre al prelievo di solidariet >> quanto piÕ possibile, l'operazione si ¬ rivelata inutile. Il governo ha fatto sapere che il prelievo sar calcolato sulle somme depositate alla mezzanotte di venerdÂ. Nel weekend e ieri (giornata festiva per la fede ortodossa, primo giorno di Quaresima) banche e uffici sono rimasti chiusi, anche se i bancomat erano stati ricaricati>>. Tutti attendono con il fiato sospeso la riapertura delle banche, che al momento ¬ rinviata a giovedÂ.
Dopo la caduta del muro di Berlino Lefkosia (che in occidente chiamiamo Nicosia) ¬ l'unica capitale del pianeta divisa in due. La citt e l'isola di Cipro continuano a essere divise tra uno stato membro dell'Unione europea e dell'eurozona (anche se irrimediabilmente mediterraneo e in collasso finanziario) e la Repubblica turco cipriota del nord, riconosciuta solo dalla Turchia.
Per anni al Nord si stentava, vivacchiando dei magri aiuti finanziari erogati da Ankara; al Sud invece si ¬ sviluppata una potente economia basata sulla finanza. Merito>> del collasso del Libano, che travolto dalle guerre e dalle tensioni ha ceduto a Cipro il ruolo di magnete di tutti gli affari (leciti e, soprattutto, illeciti come il riciclaggio). Dopo la fine dell'Unione Sovietica Cipro ¬ diventata sempre piÕ un centro dove i nuovi ricchi russi (soprattutto i possessori di ricchezze di provenienza dubbia) depositavano i loro soldi. Secondo le stime di Forbes>>, sui 170 miliardi di asset e i 70 miliardi di depositi accumulati nelle banche cipriote, 19 miliardi sono di imprese russe; 12 sono risorse delle banche russe; gli investitori privati detengono dagli 8 ai 35 miliardi. Si comprende la rabbia espressa ieri da Vladimir Putin per quella che in larga parte ¬ una tassa sui russi>>. Il guaio ¬ che molti di questi depositi sono stati investiti dalle banche cipriote nei posti sbagliati. Come i titoli del debito greco, che hanno aperto voragini nei conti delle banche dell'isola.
Il governo conservatore di Nicos Anastasiadis, privo di maggioranza parlamentare anche se uscito vincitore dalle elezioni del 23 febbraio scorso, ha dovuto chiedere aiuto all'Europa. Che lo ha concesso. A condizioni draconiane. Aspettando la riapertura delle banche, in queste ore a Nicosia il governo cerca di trovare una maggioranza per far approvare dal Parlamento l'impopolarissimo provvedimento, che comprende anche un aumento della tassa sulle imprese, finora bassissima. Il voto viene rinviato in continuazione nella speranza di rendere piÕ digeribile la stangata: si parla di esentare dal prelievo i conti sotto i 20mila euro, o comunque renderlo piÕ progressivo abbassando l'aliquota per i meno ricchi>> e alzandola per i ricchissimi. Ma c'¬ il timore il combinato disposto del crack bancario e del prelievo rappresenti il colpo di grazia per il fu miracolo economico cipriota. Sono i tedeschi che, per ragioni di concorrenza, che ci hanno imposto tutto questo - dicono nei caff¬ del centro - come piazza finanziaria ormai siamo finiti>>. Si rischia la fuga dei capitali. Ma la vera paura ¬ quella di fare la fina della vicina Grecia: sacrifici e stangate a ripetizione e sempre piÕ drastici. Ma sempre piÕ inutili.
We Italians, we've been through. It was the night between 9 and 10 July 1992, when the then Prime Minister Giuliano Amato decreed a levy on bank accounts of six per thousand. It is easy to imagine the shock that produced in the Republic of Cyprus, the announcement of a levy which comes to 6.75% on deposits up to â¬ 100 thousand, and 9.9% of those of higher consistency. In return, theoretically, you will receive shares of banks saved, valid on future earnings (but yet to be realized) gas fields recently discovered in the sea. And now contested by neighboring Turkey.-
Thu, 21 Mar 2013 04:48
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During a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, President Obama lectured NBC chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd for asking too many questions: "Chuck, how many do you got? Do you guys do this in the Israeli press? You say you get one question and then you add like five?...You see how the young lady from Channel One, she had one question, she was very well behaved, Chuck?...I mean, you're just incorrigible."
Perhaps it was the content of Todd's questions, rather than the number, that the President objected to: "I want to follow up a little bit on the peace process....you said you weren't going to let this slip to your second term. We're in your second term with the Mideast peace process. What went wrong? Why are we further away from a two-state solution?... what do you believe went wrong? Did you push Israel too hard? What do you wish you would have done differently?"
More in the cross-post on the MRC's NewsBusters blog.
Wed, 20 Mar 2013 16:19
While CNN, ABC, CBS, and NBC all ignored Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) connecting sequester cuts to a training exercise disaster that killed seven Marines, MSNBC reported his shocking statement and noted the outrage from Marine Corps officials.
Wed, 20 Mar 2013 12:05
The anthrax vaccine has been given to more than 1 million adults in the military. But no one knows how well it would work in children.
Randy Davey/Reuters/LandovThe anthrax vaccine has been given to more than 1 million adults in the military. But no one knows how well it would work in children.
Randy Davey/Reuters/LandovA controversial government proposal to test the anthrax vaccine in children would be unethical without first conducting much more research, a presidential commission concluded Tuesday.
"The federal government would have to take multiple steps before anthrax vaccine trials with children could be ethically considered," Amy Gutmann, who chairs the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues, tells Shots. "It would not be ethical to do it today."
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius asked the 13-member commission to review the possible medical experiment after critics raised questions about whether it would be ethical. They questioned whether the risks of the testing were necessary given that an anthrax attack may never happen.
"This assignment was one of the most difficult that any bioethics commission has been given," Gutmann says.
Anthrax has long been considered one of the most likely weapons a bioterrorist might use. It's relatively easy to make and spew over a large area. And the toxins produced by anthrax spores can be deadly, especially if inhaled.
"We want to make sure we're taking care of the kids," says Daniel Fagbuyi of the Children's National Medical Center, who chaired a federal panel that started the push to study the anthrax vaccine in kids.
The vaccine's been given to more than 1 million adults in the military, but no one knows how well it would work in children.
"We want to know what we're doing to them. Does this really work? And how does it work? What's the body's immune response to it? Those are the types of things that we need to glean," Fagbuyi says.
But other experts are skeptical. They wonder whether it's worth exposing kids to the vaccine for a theoretical risk, which means they won't directly benefit. So Sebelius asked the commission to vet the proposal.
"There is something to be gained by going ahead with research on children. There is a common good to be gained in being prepared," Gutmann says.
But Gutmann says that has to be weighed against an important principle.
"We have a long-standing ethical requirement in this country that children not be used merely as means for the public good," Gutmann says.
So after holding hearings and picking apart the scientific and ethical nuances, the commission outlined a series of steps researchers would have to take before any testing on children would be ethical.
Those steps would have to include research to convincingly show that children would face no more than "minimal risk." Gutmann defines that as the "level that a child routinely encounters in daily life for a medical check-up that poses absolutely no substantial risk or threat to the child."
In addition to modeling and testing in animals, the commission said researchers should first try testing the vaccine in younger adults. If that goes OK, they might try studying the vaccine on the oldest kids and work their way down very slowly to the youngest.
Other experts praised the commission's conclusions.
"We can overreact to the threat of bioterrorism and other terrorist attacks," says Lawrence Gostin of Georgetown University. "When we really don't know whether, when or if we will get any kind of an attack, it seems to me that we really do need to have very rigorous ethical safeguards," Gostin says.
But those pushing for the testing, like Fagbuyi, are disappointed. He's worried what might happen if there's an attack while we're waiting. Parents will be frantic but doctors won't know what to tell them about how well the vaccine works or whether it's safe.
"During a time of an emergency when there's enough chaos going on and discord, is that the time we really want to be explaining that, 'Well, we don't have all the evidence at this time, and we could have done this earlier, and we did not'?"
The Department of Health and Human Services, which will make the final decision about whether to move forward with the testing, issued a statement saying officials would review the commission's report.
Wed, 20 Mar 2013 11:58
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Thu, 21 Mar 2013 05:20
Bernanke on the benefits of being too big to fail.
"It's hard to calculate exactly how big of a subsidy we're giving the banks. And I certainly never meant to imply to Senator Warren that the issue is solved and gone. It is not solved and gone. I agree with her 100 percent. Too big to fail is still a major problem."
Highlight clip from yesterday's press conference.
Here's the Bloomberg story that Bernanke mentions: