Wednesday, 28 April 2010
The success of the recent oil auctions in Iraq is creating a windfall for American oil services companies. Schlumberger (SLB), Baker Hughes (BHI), Weatherford (WFT), and Halliburton (HAL) have committed to drilling 2,500-3,000 new wells per year and building new pipeline and shipping terminal infrastructure that could make the country the world's largest oil exporter. The value of these contracts may reach a massive $60 billion over the next six years, and could generate $1 billion in new revenues for each company per year. Two offshore terminals are already under construction, and another two are on the drawing board. If successful, the project will boost the country's oil production from the current 2.5 million barrels a day to 12 million b/d by 2016. Iraq's oil production peaked at 3 million b/d in 1979, and then went to nearly zero after it invaded Iran.
I remember those days well, as I was issued a visa to accompany Saddam's troops to Tehran, only to see it cancelled when the Iranians were able to mount a counter offensive. I still have the dessert camos and telephoto lenses need to cover the desert war, although the pants, regrettably, no longer fit. Iraq's oil industry never recovered. UN sanctions limited the regime to minimal "official" exports that covered humanitarian imports like baby food and drugs. Tanker trucks smuggled out through Jordan what they could, with the proceeds going directly to Saddam's family. When the US invaded, bails of hundred dollar bills were found stashed in private homes, the proceeds of these black market deals. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 21:43
Supporters of climate-change legislation veered into the path of another liberal Senate priority during the weekend. The collision has left the strategy of the global-warming theocracy in pieces, at least for the moment.
Sen. Lindsey Graham, who collaborated with Democrats in crafting the energy-tax bill, bolted for the tall grass on Saturday just before yesterday's planned unveiling of the long-anticipated climate-change measure, which had been dubbed the Kerry-Lieberman-Graham bill. The South Carolina Republican claimed to be upset at Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for pushing ahead with plans for an equally unpopular immigration bill. Mr. Graham called Mr. Reid's sudden decision to advance a bill that would grant legal status to millions of illegals a "cynical political ploy." Read more...
Posted by The Network at 21:41
'When we understand that slide, we'll have won the war:' US generals given baffling PowerPoint presentation to try to explain Afghanistan mess
Its coloured charts, graphs and bullet-points are supposed to make the most incomprehensible data crystal clear.
But even the sharpest military minds in American were left baffled by this PowerPoint slide, a mind-boggling attempt to explain the situation in Afghanistan.
'When we understand that slide, we'll have won the war,' General Stanley McChrystal, the US and NATO force commander, remarked wryly when confronted by the sprawling spaghetti diagram in a briefing . Read more...
Posted by The Network at 21:35
Overview - Washington, Wall Street and their partners in crime, the media, have continued to spread the myths of an economic recovery since late summer 2009.
In response to the propaganda, the stock market has continued to rally. But most individual investors have been left out of this tremendous rally.
Yet, the economic data paints a different picture than the media presents. Make no mistake, we are seeing the early stages of what will written in history books as America’s Second Great Depression, just as I predicted in America’s Financial Apocalypse (2006).
Who are you going to trust? The media and their government hacks who have been wrong over and over, or someone who has been right about virtually everything over the past five years?
Who are you going to trust, people with clear political and financial agendas, or someone with neither? Read more...
Posted by The Network at 20:58
For over a month now, since the farcical conclusion of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference, I have been silent, partly through family commitments abroad in the USA, but also because, in this noisy world, in ‘The Clamour Of The Times’, it is on occasion better to be quiet and contemplative, to observe rather than to comment. And, as an independent academic, it has been fascinating to witness the classical collapse of a Grand Narrative, in which social and philosophical theories are being played out before our gaze. It is like watching the Berlin Wall being torn down, concrete slab by concrete slab, brick by brick, with cracks appearing and widening daily on every face – political, economic, and scientific. Likewise, the bloggers have been swift to cover the crumbling edifice with colourful graffiti, sometimes bitter, at others caustic and witty: The Political And Economic Collapse. Read more..
(Now here's someone that really gets the picture-well worth a read-ukws)
Posted by The Network at 20:50
Today Salem-News reports that a joint experiment by Russia’s National Association for Gene Security and the Institute of Ecological and Evolutional Problems has revealed that hamsters fed genetically modified (GM) foods produce grandchildren that are unable to produce fourth generation offspring.
Scientist Alexei Surov described the experiment, in which they monitored the behavior, weight gain and birthrate of several groups of hamsters. Upon birth of the second generation they noted slower rates of growth and sexual maturity. The next generation was unable to produce.
Genetically modified foods will feed the hungry. I guess that’s one way of putting it.
You could also call it population control. Technically, the final result would be an end to world hunger. They didn’t lie. Who are they? Please refer to my Salem-News story “While We Were Sleeping...GM Food and the Brink of No Return”. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:32
Preparations are underway for a massive show of force in Toronto this Summer as the G20 summit comes to town. Unprecedented levels of security are being undertaken, with one of the largest movie studios in North America being transformed into a giant holding facility for unruly protesters.
Police say they are prepared for huge protests during the summit, scheduled to convene over the weekend of June 26/27.
Toronto law enforcement officials have announced they are “tapping” social network websites to monitor the potential activities of protesters as they gear up for the event. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:30
Global Warming: Another shoe has dropped from the IPCC centipede as scientists in Bangladesh say their country will not disappear below the waves. As usual, the U.N.'s climate charlatans forgot one tiny detail.
It keeps getting worse for the much-discredited Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which seems to have built its collapsing house of climate cards on sand or, more specifically, river sediment.
After fraudulent claims about Himalayan glaciers, African crop harvests and Amazon rain forests, plus a 2007 assessment report based on anecdotal evidence, student term papers and nonpeer-reviewed magazine articles, the panel's doomsday forecast for Bangladesh has been exposed as its latest hoax .Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:27
Posted by The Network at 19:26
The 1995 Chicago heat wave was one of the most brutal weather events the United States has ever experienced. On July 13, the thermostat hit 106 degrees. Many of the city's poor and elderly residents had no air conditioning; many of those who did lost power as blackouts swept the city. Soon, thousands were suffering from dehydration, kidney failure, and respiratory distress. The hospitals were overloaded; the city couldn't cope with the flood of 911 calls. Over the following days, more than 600 people died from heat-related illnesses, with hundreds of bodies temporarily stored in refrigerated meat trucks because the city morgues were full.
The Chicago disaster was the worst heat wave in recent US memory. But if greenhouse gas emissions continue on their current path, health experts say catastrophic heat waves are likely to become far more common. Heat-related deaths in Chicago are expected to quadruple by 2050, up from the current annual average of 182, according to the US Global Change Research Program, a government study. Rising temperatures and accompanying atmospheric changes will alter disease patterns and aggravate all manners of medical conditions, from asthma to respiratory diseases to—believe it or not—kidney stones. In May 2009, the medical journal The Lancet and University College London's Institute for Global Health issued a major report concluding that climate change is the "biggest global health threat of the 21st century." Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:06
A MAN stabbed his landlord 83 times following an argument over rent money before using the bloodstained notes to buy alcohol, a court heard.
Polish immigrant Michal Kalinowski, 22, killed Peter Berkley, 43, at his flat in Abbeystead, Skelmersdale, on November 6 last year.
But he denied murder at Preston crown court yesterday, claiming he picked up the knife in self defence. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:05
Posted by The Network at 19:04
DOVER could be "swamped" by illegal immigrants because of ferocious job cuts by the UK Border Agency.
It has been revealed that all Dover's 24 immigration officer posts will be slashed – despite the team being responsible for almost 40 per cent of all removals in Kent last year.
In a bitter second blow, proposals are also being made to shut down the 60-bed detention centre based at the port. The facility is used to detain offenders before deportation and to hold immigrants awaiting interview.
Furious UKBA officers have launched a campaign against the cuts, which will save the agency more than £1 million a year. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 19:01
I suppose it is the perfect expression of how and why the Labour Party has lost the white working class vote in the last fifteen years; it has only contempt for them. Opposition to immigration - as we know from Neathergate, well before Bigotgate – is seen by Labour has being rooted in a stupid xenophobia; no matter how mildly expressed, anyone who fears we may have let a few too many people into the country is at heart a racist, a bigot. This cat has been out of the bag for a while now, but it is still something the party denies in public. This is why Lord Mandelson was so swift and insistent that Brown had not MEANT that Gillian Duffy was a bigot, he did not really think that at all. But he does think that. They all do. Read more..
Posted by The Network at 18:59
A new government report says global warming could lead to an increase in both cancer and mental illness worldwide, and it calls for more federally funded research to determine how that might happen. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:47
So it’s looking pretty ugly across the pond this morning.
Spreads between the debt of fiscally troubled countries — Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain — are continuing to widen versus German debt, a sign of growing stress. The blowout in Greek vs. German spreads is getting downright comical. On 10-year bonds, it was at more than 1.90 percentage points earlier this morning, with the Greek 10-year yielding just under 12%. All told the spread between Greek and German 10-years is around 850 basis points. Yields on Greek two-year bonds are also soaring. At around 8:30 a.m. Tradeweb was quoting the yield on the Greek two year at more than 22%. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:45
Businessmen and economists are warning the crisis affecting Greece could be coming to Britain unless the next Government takes drastic action to cut the national deficit.
They warned that hedge funds and speculators would pick off weaker European economies “like they did with the banks”, while senior businessman said the party that wins the election had to be on a “war footing” to deal with the scale of the crisis.
A widespread stock market sell-off was triggered yesterday when ratings agency Standard & Poor’s cut Greek debt to junk status, while a downgrade to Portugal reignited worries about a growing eurozone crisis. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:43
The latest line-up from New Scotland Yard’s “most wanted” list, as released on the Metropolitan Police’s website, is a searing indictment of the highly destructive effect of mass immigration into Britain.
Of the top twelve suspects, only two appear to be British and all the rest are a collection of immigrants from the far corners of the globe, wanted for serious offences such as murder, terrorism and fraud. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:41
Holy Cow! Carbon Trading Has Barely Gotten Off The Ground, And There's Already A Huge Financial Scandal In Europe
The news out of Europe is that Deutsche Bank and several others have been raided in a C02 swapping tax evasion scheme.
This is amazing news because the carbon market -- a concept beloved by both banks and environmentalists -- is still nascent.
No, we don't yet know how this is going to play out but really the fact that a market that's barely gotten off the ground is already drawing suspicious of tax evasion is very damning, and suggests that banks can't be trusted if the market ever gets huge
Posted by The Network at 18:40
Spain just got downgraded by S&P. Given that S&P is usually the last to know, it looks like things are only going to get worse for the eurozone giant.
While Spain might seem like another Greece or Portugal, its something far different--and worse. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:38
Spain's debt has been downgraded in a further widening of Europe’s government debt crisis.
The move follows its reductions yesterday of Portugal and Greece, which sent shock waves through world markets. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:36
Airlines could share in a £ 2billion taxpayer-funded compensation bonanza in the wake of the volcanic ash chaos which turned Europe into a six-day no-fly zone.
The European Union has agreed to allow state help for airlines which have complained bitterly that the flight ban has cost them millions.
They will be offered emergency loans and allowed to postpone payments of charges. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 18:03
Yet another Russian scientist believes the Arctic is set for cooling and thus increasing sea ice, this reported in the German version of the Russian online news RIA NOVOSTI (see links below). Scientist Vladimir Sokolov says:
The warming that occurred in the Arctic has swung back to cooling and sea ice that melted over the past years is recovering. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 16:40
As if the Large Combustion Plant Directive isn't doing enough damage, the "colleagues" are now working on a revision to the infamous directive on integrated pollution prevention and control (IPPC), which they are now calling the Industrial Emissions Directive. Read more...
Posted by Corrugated Soundbite at 15:16
The financial crisis that broke out in the United States around the summer of 2007 and crested around the autumn of 2008 had destroyed US$34.4 trillion of wealth globally by March 2009, when the equity markets hit their lowest points.
On October 31, 2007, the total market value of publicly traded companies around the world reached a high of $63 trillion. A year and four months later, by early March 2009, the value had dropped more than half to $28.6 trillion. The lost $34.4 trillion in wealth is more than the 2008 annual gross domestic product (GDP) of the US, the European Union and Japan combined. This wealth deficit effect would take at least a decade to replenish even if these advanced economies were to grow at mid-single digit rate after inflation and only if no double-dip materialized in the markets. At an optimistic compounded annual growth rate of 5%, it would take more than 10 years to replenish the lost wealth in the US economy. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 15:14
Repeats on BBC hit record high as viewers face 13,000 hours of Dad's Army, 'Allo 'Allo and The Good Life
The BBC screened a record level of repeats last year - the equivalent to 530 full days.
Viewers faced 12,724 hours of shows such as Dad's Army, 'Allo 'Allo and The Good Life, as well as films such as Some Like It Hot, Mary Poppins and The Snowman.
The worst culprit was BBC3, which only runs from 7pm to 4am, and had 84 per cent of its programming made up of repeats. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 15:13
A two-year-old boy has been pulled out of a nursery after staff claimed a cheese sandwich his mother made for him broke their 'healthy eating' rules.
Jack Ormisher burst into tears after he opened his packed lunch only for workers to take the sandwich away from him and offer him their own fruit and vegetables.
When the youngster's father went to pick him up from the Westfield Children's Centre, in Pemberton, near Wigan, staff told him if Jack wanted cheese sandwiches they should include lettuce or tomato so it could be classed as a 'snack' rather than 'lunch.'
The rebuke came after the nursery drew up a list of 'healthy eating options' for youngsters which include fruit, vegetables, rice, pasta and potatoes. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 15:11
North Korea has adopted a new war invasion strategy and shifted troop reserves accordingly, according to JoongAng Daily.
The new plan calls for the immediate occupation of part of Seoul, followed by negotiations for a cease-fire. It replaces plans for a Sherman's March-type invasion.
While it could be mere posturing, the plan shows ruthless understanding of the peninsula balance of power. South Korea is too timid to retaliate when attacked. North Korea has a failed economy and wants to move from charity case to parasite. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 13:29
The Greek debt crisis is spreading “like Ebola,” and Europe must act now to protect the stability the financial markets, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
“It’s not a question of the danger of contagion; contagion has already happened,” OECD secretary general Angel Gurria said.
“This is like Ebola. When you realise you have it you have to cut your leg off in order to survive,” he added, saying the crisis is "threatening the stability of the financial system". Read more...
Posted by The Network at 13:26
Each year the world loses an estimated 83 billion tons of soil. What does this mean for food production and what can we do about?
John Jeavons is saving the planet one scoop of applesauce at a time. Jeavons stands at the front of the classroom at Ecology Action, the experimental farm he founded on the side of a mountain above Willits, in Northern California’s Mendocino County. For every tablespoon of food he sucks down his gullet, he scoops up six spoonfuls of dirt, one at a time for dramatic effect, and dumps them into another bowl. It’s a stark message he’s trying to get across to the 35 people who have come from around the country to get a tour of his farm -- simplified, to be sure, but comprehensible: For every unit of food we consume, using the conventional agricultural methods employed in the U.S., six times that amount of topsoil is lost. Since, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the average person eats a ton of food each year, that works out to 12,000 pounds (5,443 kilograms) of topsoil. John Jeavons estimates that using current farming practices we have 40 to 80 years of arable soil left. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 13:20
On November 5, 2009, the FCC released their Consumer Facts on "Wireless Devices and Health Concerns." In this document, the FCC recommends precautions for the use of cell phones.
According to the FCC, “Recent reports by some health and safety interest groups have suggested that wireless device use can be linked to cancer and other illnesses. These questions have become more pressing as more and younger people are using the devices, and for longer periods of time.”
They now recommend the following steps:
•Use an earpiece or headset
•If possible, keep wireless devices away from your body when they are on, mainly by not attaching them to belts or carrying them in pockets
•Use the cell phone speaker to reduce exposure to your head
•Consider texting rather than talking
•Buy a wireless device with lower Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) Source
Posted by The Network at 12:09
Gold dipped to $1,150/oz after lunch in New York before recovering to close with a gain of 0.03%. It has range traded from $1,150/oz to $1,157/oz in late Asian and European trading this morning. Gold is currently trading at $1,155/oz and in euro and GBP terms, at €865/oz and £749/oz respectively. Gold remains near record highs in euros and Swiss francs. Gold in sterling has rallied today by more 2% today as sterling has fallen on hung parliament and UK fiscal deficit concerns. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 12:06
Labour has been accused of inappropriately politicising children as young as three by standing at school gates and handing out party balloons.
Campaigners handed out the Labour-branded helium filled balloons outside several north London primary schools.
Alice McAllister, of Highbury, whose children go to one of the schools, called it "exploitative marketing". Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:42
Even before it became law, Stuart Isbister had a no smoking policy at his small gift shop.
Not that it was much of an issue - in fact he can't recall a customer ever having lit up while browsing his shelves.
Which makes it all the more astonishing that Mr Isbister has just been dragged through the courts by his local council because he failed to display a small no smoking sign.
In a case costing the taxpayer thousands of pounds, he was pursued with the full force of the law by his Labour-run authority - until the action was yesterday thrown out by magistrates.
Posted by The Network at 09:41
Nick Clegg has been accused of hypocrisy after it emerged that he made more than £312,000 profit when he sold his house in Brussels.
The Lib Dem leader received nearly £140,000 from taxpayers for living away from home as an MEP for the East Midlands.
Although he maintains that he did not rely on the expenses to fund the home, the profit he pocketed undermines his insistence that parliamentarians should pay back capital gains they make from state subsidies Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:39
The Government should oppose European laws that will threaten the UK's energy security by closing 14 British power plants by 2016, the CBI has urged.
The business group wants the life of the power plants to be extended until at least 2021, when Britain's new nuclear power stations and more wind farms will have been built.
Member states are due to vote next week on the law, which also reduces the UK's ability to decide for itself how best to meet air pollution targets
The UK is facing a potential energy crisis in the second half of this decade if the old coal and oil-fired stations are shut down to comply with European pollution laws. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:34
Spain's jobless rate topped 20 percent of the workforce in the first quarter, its highest level since 1997, a report said Tuesday, citing figures accidentally released by statistics institute INE ahead of schedule. Skip related content
The number of unemployed jumped by 286,200 during the first three months of the year compared with the final quarter of 2009 to reach 4.61 million or 20.05 percent of the workforce, conservative daily ABC reported Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:24
Yesterday was the day the elephant in the room could be ignored no more. The hugely-respected Institute for Fiscal Studies shattered the silence over the issue no party in this phoney election has had the courage to address...
It gave in frightening detail the spending cuts and tax rises required to reduce Britain's terrifying national debt.
Worst of all - and it is a devastating indictment, because they are actually in power - the IFS says the Labour Party has failed to specify an incredible 87 per cent - or £45.8billion - of its planned cuts Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:23
When you really need something, it's natural to worry about running out of it. Peak oil has been a global preoccupation since the 1970s, and the warnings get louder with each passing year. Environmentalists emphasize the importance of placing limits on consumption of fossil fuels, but haven't been successful in encouraging people to consume less energy—even with the force of law at their backs.
But maybe they're going about it all wrong, looking for solutions in the wrong places. Economists Lucas Bretschger and Sjak Smulders argue that the decisive question isn't to focus directly on preserving the resources we already have. Instead, they ask: “Is it realistic to predict that knowledge accumulation is so powerful as to outweigh the physical limits of physical capital services and the limited substitution possibilities for natural resources?” In other words, can increasing scientific knowledge and technological innovation overcome any limitations to economic growth posed by the depletion of non-renewable resources? Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:18
European sovereign debt crisis worsen and spreads – with Greek two-year bond yields up at 19%, and Portuguese bonds also under attack; latest dose of panic was caused by a decision from S&P to downgrade Greece to junk status; S&P warns that debtors might only recover 30-50% of their investments, a situation of severe default; negotiations with IMF are likely to be completed within the next few days; Trichet and Strauss-Kahn have descended on Berlin for emergency talks with Merkel; Wolfgang Munchau argues that the German chancellor has set out to destroy the eurozone, and is about to succeed; the estimate by market participants about the loans needed to save Greece is rising by the day – and vastly exceeds the most optimistic estimates coming out of the negotiations in Athens; Bloomberg says the on European bonds is about to spin out of control, as markets in Italy and Ireland have also come under attack; Wolfgang Schauble has already handed out draft legislation, but a vote will not be taken until after the May 9 elections in North-Rhine Westphalia; Kathimerini says the Greek has not enough to explain the urgency of the situation to the Greek people; Willem Buiter, meanwhile, argues that the only way out of this mess is for a negotiated restructuring of Greek debt – and the speedy set up of a European Monetary Fund. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:13
The EU commission on Tuesday (27 April) proposed a 2011 budget of €130 billion, an increase of almost six percent compared to the current year, with funds for poor regions, research and economic recovery getting the biggest boost.
"The draft budget adopted today gives Europe and its citizens incentives to develop an economy for the future: research and innovation, sustainability and inclusion are its cornerstones," EU budget commissioner Janusz Lewandowski said. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:11
ATHENS - GREECE was pushed to the brink of a financial abyss and started dragging another eurozone country - Portugal - down with it, fuelling fears of a continent-wide debt meltdown.
Stocks around the world tanked after ratings agency Standard & Poor's on Tuesday downgraded Greek bonds to junk status and downgraded Portugese bonds two notches, showing investors that Greece's financial contagion is spreading. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:07
The Tories and Lib Dems have inexplicably failed to challenge Labour over its curtailment of our freedoms
At the beginning of the campaign a vote for Clegg was disparaged as a vote for Labour; then it was condemned as a vote for the Tories; now it's returned to being a vote for Labour again. One way or another the Lib-Dems are going to be condemned for infidelity after the election, which is why it is essential they remain true to their beliefs during and after the campaign.
What is worrying is the chill that has descended on civil liberties, as though freedom was some minority issue for eccentrics, rather than the oxygen of democracy. The failure of the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats to raise the attack on liberties by the Labour party and so signal its vital importance to the electorate is one of the more depressing aspects of the last few weeks. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 09:06
THE shocking truth about how civil servants have squandered billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money under Labour was exposed last night in a damning Whitehall report.
Britain’s army of pampered mandarins annually run up an £11million bill for taxis, spend £57million on office furniture and £564million on spin doctors.
Consultancy fees have soared to £1.6billion in one year alone for management advisers while the annual information technology bill has hit £5.8billion. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 08:53
Posted by The Network at 08:53
GORDON Brown last night signalled that Labour would carry on pouring taxpayers’ cash into the yawning public-sector pensions black hole, telling nurses’ leaders: “Your pensions are safe with us.”
The Prime Minister, speaking at the Royal College of Nursing annual conference in Bournemouth, said his party was committed to defending final-salary pension schemes for state workers despite a funding deficit many experts estimate to be more than £1trillion.
Mr Brown was given a standing ovation for his speech in which he told the conference that Labour wanted to “fight for the NHS”.
Posted by The Network at 08:51
How could this happen? Former Land Girl honoured by Brown dies after she is left to 'wallow in her own filth' on NHS ward
Her 'loyal and devoted' service as a Land Girl in the Second World War won her praise from Gordon Brown.
But this is the horrifyingly undignified state in which Clara Stokes had to live out her last days on an NHS ward.
Helpless and confused after suffering a stroke, the 84-year-old was left dehydrated, hungry and lying in her own faeces in a hospital bed for six hours. Relatives claim overworked nurses had ignored her. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 08:49
Greece’s fortunes were dealt yet another blow as Standard & Poor’s slashed its credit rating to junk status - BB+ - the first time that has happened to a euro member since the single currency was created, pushing yields on 10-year Greek bonds up to a record 9.73pc.
The credit-rating agency also cut Portugal’s sovereign debt ratings by two notches to A-, as the swirling storm hit the country with full-force.
“We have gone past the point of no return,” said Jacques Cailloux, chief Europe economist at the Royal Bank of Scotland.“There is a complete loss of confidence. The bond markets are in disintegration and it is getting worse every day. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 08:46
The Institute for Fiscal Studies criticised Labour, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats for not being frank with the public about the drastic measures needed to repair the government’s finances.
The institute claimed that the parties have black holes of up to £52 billion in the economic plans they have published as part of the election campaign. Read more...
Posted by The Network at 08:41
MINISTERS were struggling last night to prevent open civil war over Gordon Brown’s leadership as recriminations mounted over Labour’s lacklustre election campaign.
Lord Mandelson was forced to brush aside speculation that he is plotting to line up Foreign Secretary David Miliband as the next leader.
But behind the scenes, Labour insiders were savaging Mr Brown’s leadership. “Gordon is cyanide on the doorstep,” said one candidate while a minister added: “Gordon is Labour’s worst leader ever.”
Posted by The Network at 08:39
NICK Clegg’s enthusiasm to give yet more power to Europe was exposed yesterday in a dossier analysing proposals backed by his party.
The Lib Dem leader, who is now vying to play a key role in the future government of Britain, has backed a string of controversial policies.
They include supporting a common EU asylum policy, giving up the UK’s seat on the United Nations Security Council and sending every home in Britain a pack extolling the virtues of the single currency.
Posted by The Network at 08:36
INVESTORS took a battering yesterday as Greece’s economic meltdown wiped £39billion off the value of the FTSE 100 top shares index.
It fell 2.6 per cent to close at 5603.5 after its biggest one-day dive since last November.
The falls came as credit ratings agency Standard & Poor’s slashed Greece’s sovereign debt to junk status, and sparked worries that debt contagion could sweep across Europe by also downgrading crisis-hit Portugal.
Posted by The Network at 08:32
Authorities last week suspended seasonal flu vaccinations for children under five across Australia, following a high level of bad reactions among children.
In Western Australia, 55 children suffered convulsions after having the vaccination, and almost 200 others suffered fevers and vomiting, chief health officer Dr Tarun Weeramanthri said.
One child is in a serious but stable condition at Princess Margaret Hospital.
Dr Weeramanthri said all states and territories were working to determine how many children had suffered adverse effects so that the national picture was clear.
Posted by The Network at 08:30
The former auxiliary bishop of Sydney blames the absence of women from church life as a catalyst for the sexual abuse crisis enveloping the faith.
Posted by The Network at 08:26
In the past few months, the perennial controversy over psychiatric drug use has been growing considerably more heated. A January study showed a negligible difference between antidepressants and placebos in treating all but the severest cases of depression. The study became the subject of a Newsweek cover story, and the value of psychiatric drugs has recently been debated in the pages of the New Yorker, the New York Times and Salon. Many doctors and patients fiercely defend psychiatric drugs and their ability to improve lives. But others claim their popularity is a warning sign of a dangerously over-medicated culture.
The timing of Robert Whitaker’s "Anatomy of an Epidemic," a comprehensive and highly readable history of psychiatry in the United States, couldn’t be better. An acclaimed mental health journalist and winner of a George Polk Award for his reporting on the psychiatric field, Whitaker draws on 50 years of literature and in-person interviews with patients to answer a simple question: If "wonder drugs" like Prozac are really helping people, why has the number of Americans on government disability due to mental illness skyrocketed from 1.25 million in 1987 to over 4 million today?
Posted by The Network at 08:20
Detainees in a secret Baghdad detention facility were hung upside-down, deprived of air, kicked, whipped, beaten, given electric shocks, and sodomized, Human Rights Watch said today. Iraq should thoroughly investigate and prosecute all government and security officials responsible, Human Rights Watch said.
Human Rights Watch interviewed 42 of the men in the Al Rusafa Detention Center on April 26, 2010. They were among about 300 detainees transferred from the secret facility in the old Muthanna airport in West Baghdad to Al Rusafa into a special block of 19 cage-type cells over the past several weeks, after the existence of the secret prison was revealed.
Posted by The Network at 08:17
The New York Times reported Sunday that American special forces units are operating in and around the Afghan city of Kandahar, assassinating or capturing alleged leaders and militants of the Taliban resistance ahead of the major US-NATO offensive scheduled for June.
Suggestive of the sinister and murderous character of such operations, the Times noted that the “opening salvos of the offensive are being carried out in the shadows”. It reported that “elite” units had been “picking up or picking off insurgent leaders” for the past several weeks
Posted by The Network at 08:14
As Dr. Allen Frances read through the list of proposed changes to psychiatry's bible of mental sickness, alarms started ringing in his own mind.
"I was surprised," the renowned U.S. psychiatrist says, "that the proposals managed to be much worse than my most pessimistic expectations."
By the time he was finished reading, Frances had calculated that the recommendations contained within the first draft for the fifth and latest revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders -- a hugely influential book used daily by doctors worldwide, psychiatry's official classification of all the ways humanity can go "mad"-- could unnecessarily trigger wholesale "epidemics" of mental illness and expose millions more adults and children to potentially harmful psychiatric drugs
Posted by The Network at 08:11
It did not take too long for contagion to spread (one day), smack in the face of EU statements that contagion was no risk. Why the EU would put themselves in a position to look so foolish is beyond me. Here is a series of articles to consider
Posted by The Network at 08:10
In the coming years, I think there is a strong possibility that there is going to be crisis and martial law in the United States and in other nations as well. During such periods, the items you need to survive will become increasingly scarce, especially if the crisis and martial law goes on for an extended period of time.
This article could have well been entitled How to Be a Successful Criminal, because what we are talking about bartering during cisis and/or martial law. In crisis and martial law, bartering of goods will be considered a criminal act. As such, if you barter you will be a participant in the black market (at least in the eyes of the government). Remember, during crisis with martial law, you can be arrested for just about anything.
Posted by The Network at 08:07
The FTSE 100 suffered its biggest one day fall since November amid fears of contagion from Greece's sovereign debt crisis.
Posted by The Network at 08:06
The Pentagon’s controversial plan to hit terrorists half a planet away suffered a setback this weekend, after an experimental hypersonic glider disappeared over the Pacific Ocean.
In its first flight test. the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2) was supposed to be rocket-launched from California to the edge of space. Then the HTV-2 would could screaming back into the atmosphere, maneuvering at twenty times times the speed of sound before landing north of the Kwajalein Atoll, 30 minutes later and 4100 nautical miles away. Thinly wedge-shaped for better lift, equipped with autonomous navigation for more precision, and made of carbon-carbon to withstand the assault of hypersonic flight, the hope was it could fly farther and more accurately at a lower angle of attack than other craft returning to Earth.
Posted by The Network at 08:03
Alex Jones chronicles the emergence of the police state in the West.
This video needs to get out! Why not burn it to a dozen DVDs, hold a viewing party for friends and family who need to wake up, and give away copies for others to do the same?
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