Dienstag, 29. August 2006

Independent Verification: Essential Action to Assure Integrity in the Voting Process

Roy Saltman Writes New Paper On Voting Integrity

by Warren Stewart,
VoteTrustUSA - August 22, 2006

Dr. Roy Saltman has submitted a significant paper "Independent Verification: Essential Action to Assure Integrity in the Voting Process" to the National Institute on Standards and Technology on August 22, 2006.

Saltman has worked in the field of election policy and technology for over 30 years. His 1975 report, "Effective Use of Computing Technology in Vote-Tallying" was a seminal work expressing concerns about the accuracy and security of computerized voting systems. His 1988 report, "Accuracy, Integrity and Security in Computerized Vote-Tallying," http://www.votetrustusa.org/pdfs/Saltman/accuracy-saltman.pdf laid the groundwork for the initial efforts of the Federal Election Commissionto develop standards for voting system. After the 2000 Presidential election, the report was widely cited in the media for its statement that "the use of pre-scored punch card ballots should be ended."

In his new paper Saltman observes that the issue of software fraud and error in computerizes voting systems arose in 1969, soon after use of computers in voting began and document control and partial recounting were recommended solutions for systems using ballots. He recommends that independent verification would reduce the fear of fraud, a continuing concern over the more than 200 years of US elections, as well as improving integrity and public confidence in correctness of reported outcomes and evaluates the widely used, current method of providing an audit trail with printouts and notes several disadvantages.


Kathy Dopp
National Election Data Archive Dedicated to Accurately Counting Elections

"Enlighten the people generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like evil spirits at the dawn of day," wrote Thomas Jefferson in 1816.

Ask Anheuser-Busch to STOP promoting Bullfighting

A message from Eleanor

Original Message

Yes, the pictures are graphic!! You shouldn't look if you are squeamish like me! I looked and I won't ever forget! This has to stop. Thanks, Summer, for this great petition!!!

Love, Eleanor

Hi Everyone, Please sign this petition (how could one not?) against bullfighting! Disgusting spectacle - BEWARE - there are graphic photographs so just skip to the signing part really fast!

Love and hugs, Kisses Jessie

Original Message

Please take a moment to sign this petition...

Thank you.


Wanted, Dead or Alive

Auch fünf Jahre nach den Anschlägen vom 11.9. wird Osama bin Laden auf der Fahndungsliste des FBI nicht dieser Tat beschuldigt.


US-Heimatschutz pocht auf Fluggastdaten


Lawyers Will Subpoena Bush White House in Phone Company Spying Case

Two lawyers who brought the first lawsuit against the Bush administration, Verizon and AT&T for illegally examining the phone records of virtually every American citizen will announce today that they are serving subpoenas on the Bush White House and on Verizon.


Watch Out for Voting Day Bugs

Deployment and use of new electronic voting systems technologies on a large scale virtually guarantee big surprises and unintended consequences: sudden system crashes, corrupted data or painfully slow systems. It will be essential this year that jurisdictions have backup and contingency plans that anticipate a wide range of possible failures in their electronic voting systems, including those that occur in the middle of the voting process on Election Day (or days).


Rove Still Holds Influence with GOP Despite Scandal

Supported by the GOP, Karl Rove still holds sway in the Bush administration as a political strategist. After a criminal investigation put Rove under scrutiny for months, he was forced to surrender a key policy role in a move that raised questions about his authority in the White House. Rove has retained his influence over the president.


Representative Jeb Bradley's Portfolio: Invested Interests

"Bradley has voted in a way that makes him look more like a stockholder than an elected representative," writes Ken Silverstein. "For example, he owns nearly $1 million in oil, gas and electric company stock, and has taken over $45,000 in campaign contributions from energy industry PACs. Bradley has consistently voted with energy interests since taking office, often stripping key environmental and consumer protections in the process. It's a textbook case of why there should be some financial threshold at which it becomes mandatory for members of Congress to put their wealth in blind trusts."


The Red Cross has announced a disaster response partnership with Wal-Mart

Disaster Relief - for Profit

Naomi Klein writes, "The Red Cross has just announced a new disaster response partnership with Wal-Mart. When the next hurricane hits, it will be a co-production of Big Aid and Big Box."


Republican Report Hypes Iran Threat

The new report, which was carried out under the auspices of the House Intelligence Committee chairman, Congressman Peter Hoekstra, appears to be designed mainly to cast doubt on estimates by the CIA and the rest of the intelligence community that Iran was unlikely to develop a nuclear weapon until at least 2010.


Is YOUR Technology Toxic?

Some of the hottest names in technology scored the lowest grades in a recent test of environmentally-unfriendly electronics. That’s because some of your favorite tech gadgets are made with toxic chemicals like polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic and brominated flame retardants (BFRs). And when last year’s coolest trend isn’t so cool anymore, tons of tossed out electronics make their way to the developing world, where children dismantle them for scraps, and are exposed to the toxics they contain. It’s time for these companies to cut the chemicals from their products, and create a strong recycling program.

Take Action >> Tell these toxic-tech companies to clean up their act:

Robert Novak and the Perfect Stranger

Jason Leopold reports, "Recent news reports have fingered former deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage as the official who first leaked Plame's employment at the CIA to Novak on July 8, 2003. However, White House political adviser Karl Rove also spoke with Novak that day and told him that Plame was employed by the CIA, according to published reports. What's left unclear, however, by the latest media reports is who was the first administration official to tell Novak about Plame? Armitage or Rove? July 8, 2003, as it turns out, was quite a busy day for some senior White House officials."


Kerry Finally Slams Ken Blackwell - Kerry Revives 2004 Election Allegations

An email sent by Senator John Kerry criticizes GOP Secretary of State Ken Blackwell for his dual role in 2004 as President Bush's honorary Ohio campaign co-chairman and the state's top election official. "He used the power of his state office to try to intimidate Ohioans and suppress the Democratic vote," said Kerry's email.


Slowly Sidling to Iraq's Exit

"By Election Day, how many Republican candidates will have come out against the Iraq war or distanced themselves from the administration's policies?" asks E.J. Dionne. "August 2006 will be remembered as a watershed in the politics of Iraq. It is the month in which a majority of Americans told pollsters that the struggle for Iraq was not connected to the larger war on terrorism. They thus renounced a proposition the administration has pushed relentlessly since it began making the case four years ago to invade Iraq."


Das Ende der Basler Mobilfunk-Charta naht


WATADA WATCH: an appeal for letters and calls to Gen. Dubik


Informant: jensenmk

From ufpj-news



Here is a video and transcript of First Lt. Ehren Watada's very important and moving speech given at the 2006 Veterans For Peace National Convention in Seattle, August 12th - http://www.vfp125.org/watadaspeech.html -

Please take the time to contact Lt. Gen. James Dubik at Fort Lewis and ask him not to court-martial Lt. Watada.

Urgent Action - Tell Fort Lewis: “No court martial!”

Informant: Frank

Climate change in Latin America & Caribbean

http://news.bbc.co.uk/nol/shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/290806_nef_report.pdf [1.7meg]

* * * * excellent graphic on url * * * *

Caribbean 'faces stormier future'

Latin America and the Caribbean face a greater risk of more natural disasters because of environmental degradation and climate change, campaigners warn.

A report by a coalition of environment and aid groups said the region's weather was becoming less predictable and often more extreme.

Evidence showed many areas were more vulnerable because depleted ecosystems were struggling to adapt, they argued.

The groups said efforts to end poverty were being undermined as a result.

The report, Up in Smoke? Latin America and the Caribbean, presented evidence it said showed that the livelihoods of millions of people in the region were at risk, including:

* Increased storm intensity -
* the 2005 hurricane season was "one of the most active and destructive in history" Water shortages -
* changes to glacier melt in the Andes were affecting river flows and threatening water supplies, leading to a greater risk of disputes Illegal logging and deforestation - linked to increased carbon emissions, and leaves area prone to a greater risk of flooding

The report's author, Andrew Simms, from the New Economics Foundation
(Nef), said the findings highlighted how climate change was having an impact on global efforts to eradicate poverty.

"The region has had to deal with highly variable climates for many centuries. It has developed very resilient forms of agriculture based upon high levels of diversity of crops, which are adapted to grow in a wide range of microclimates.

"The danger that now seems to be facing people in the region is that those conditions could become more permanent and more extreme," he said.

Storm brewing

The 2005 Atlantic hurricane season saw an unprecedented 27 tropical storms, 15 of which went on to become hurricanes. The most devastating was Hurricane Katrina, which claimed more than 1,000 lives when it struck the US Gulf coast.

A hurricane is a spinning vortex of winds swirling round a eye of very low pressure Warm, moist air is drawn upwards around the eye Cooler dry air is sucked downwards by the low pressure centre Banks of thunderstorms surround the edges The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa) had predicted that there would be up to nine hurricanes.

For the 2006 season, Noaa's initial forecast predicted 13-16 named storms, four of which would go on to become "major storms".

In August, however, officials revised their forecast, saying that there would be 12-15 named storms. But this was still above the long-term average of 11.

Uncertainty still remains within the scientific community as to whether there is a direct link between human-induced climate change and increased intensity and frequency of tropical storms.

Overlooked research

Commenting on the coalition's report, US climate change researcher Timmons Roberts, from the College of William and Mary, Virginia, warned that overstating the risks could prove to be counterproductive.

"Some points may be exaggerated or so uncertain as to make scientists uneasy about making such claims, especially about future disasters."

But Professor Roberts, who is currently working in the UK, did agree that the risks facing the region were extremely serious.

Diane Liverman, director of the Environmental Change Institute at Oxford University, UK, welcomed the coalition's decision to focus on the region.

"I am sometimes concerned that the understandable focus on African climate and development issues has meant that we haven't paid attention to the millions at risk in other regions of the developing world."

But Professor Liverman, who has studied climate vulnerability in Mexico for the past 20 years, was critical of the report for overlooking research by climate scientists in the region.

"Organisations such as the Inter American Institute for Global Change Research (IAI) and researchers in many universities have done a lot of research on climate and environmental change in the region; little or none of which is referenced or used in the report."

Call for action

The coalition, whose 20 members include Tearfund, Greenpeace and WWF, said there were three main challenges that needed to be addressed:

* stopping and reversing further global warming
* how to live with global warming that cannot be stopped
* the need for a "climate friendly" development framework that delivers an equitable share of natural resources

"Currently, we do not have a meaningful emissions reduction target that will prevent runaway climate change, " Mr Simms said.

"We also do not have an idea of the scale of the resources needed to help developing countries deal with it."

He added: "We must apply a climate test to how the world does business. If we don't then we will probably inadvertently make things much worse."

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2006/08/28 23:13:17 GMT



Up in smoke? Weather patterns in the Caribbean and Latin America are changing

With global warming, weather patterns in the Caribbean and Latin America are changing, becoming less predictable and more extreme. Changes include drought in the Amazon, floods in Haiti, vanishing glaciers in Colombia and increased hurricane activity in Central America, the Caribbean and southern Brazil. People are becoming more vulnerable.

Up in smoke? http://www.neweconomics.org/gen/z_sys_PublicationDetail.aspx?PID=226

Published by The Up in Smoke Coalition.

Informant: binstock

Washington state's glaciers are melting, and that has scientists concerned

By Les Blumenthal

McClatchy Newspapers


WASHINGTON - With more glaciers than any state in the Lower 48, Washington state has emerged as a bellwether for global warming.

The signs are not encouraging.

A national environmental group recently reported that North Cascades and Mount Rainier are among the dozen national parks most susceptible to climate change.

At Mount Rainier, which has more glacial ice than the rest of the Cascades combined and is among the best studied sites in the nation, the area covered by glaciers shrank by more than a fifth from 1913 to 1994, and the volume of the glaciers by almost one-fourth, the National Park Service says. From 1912 to 2001, the Nisqually Glacier on Mount Rainier retreated nearly a mile.

Since the first stirrings of the Industrial Revolution 150 years ago, glaciers in the northern Cascades have shrunk by 40 percent, and the pace is accelerating. The South Cascades Glacier, one of the most studied in the nation, has lost roughly half its mass since 1928.

In the Olympic Mountains, glaciers have lost about one-third of their mass.

"They are the canary in the coal mine," Ed Josberger, the head of the U.S. Geological Survey's ice and climate project in Tacoma, said of the glaciers in Washington state. "They are changing fast, and this is not good."

The state's official climatologist, Philip Mote, agreed.

"Everything is now retreating, and the smaller glaciers are disappearing," said Mote, a research scientist at the University of Washington, who's guarded in attributing the changes directly to global warming but concedes that the evidence is mounting.

Glaciers are affected by two climatic conditions: snowfall, which adds to their mass during the winter, and warm temperatures, which spur melting in the summer. The amount of snow falling in the Northwest is declining, while temperatures are rising.

During the 20th century, Mote said, temperatures in the region rose about
1.5 degrees Fahrenheit. In western Washington state, Mote said, the increase was even greater, roughly 2 degrees.

Despite some heavy snowfalls in the late 1990s - in the winter of 1998-99, Mount Baker recorded a record snowfall of 1,100 inches - the overall trend is negative.

"The decline in snowfall in the Northwest has been the largest in the West, and it is clearly related to temperature," Mote said.

The glaciers in Washington state aren't the only ones retreating. From the Arctic to Peru and from Greenland and Europe to East Africa, there are reports that glaciers are shrinking.

There are exceptions. Glaciers on California's Mount Shasta, at the southern end of the Cascade range, have been growing, Mote said. Recent studies indicate that glaciers also might be growing in the Himalayas and other Asian mountain ranges.

No one is quite sure what causes these anomalies.

"The signature of human influence on climate is pretty clear on the continental scale and the regional scale," Mote said. But when it comes to smaller geographic areas, Mote said, the picture is unclear.

Other scientists are convinced that global warming has caused glaciers to retreat in the Northwest and elsewhere.

"This is what the models predicted," said Joe Reidel, the park geologist for the North Cascades National Park. "They are melting fast. There can be pauses of five or six years, but they are still shrinking rapidly."

Reidel has been studying glaciers in the North Cascades for 15 years. Scientists use everything from ice-penetrating radar to satellite imagery to on-the-ground observations to track the glaciers. They've been methodically studying the South Cascades Glacier for 50 years and observing glacial changes on Mount Rainier since the late 1800s.

"There is no question glaciers are a dramatic indicator of climate," Reidel said.

The National Park Service has been supportive of his research, Reidel said, but it's harder to find more funding through federal grants.

"Money is getting tougher and tougher to come by," he said.

Reidel thinks the glaciers and the Earth's climate might be reaching a tipping point from which there may be no recovery.

There's more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere now than at any time in the past 20 million years, Reidel said. Carbon dioxide, thought to be a key ingredient in global warming, is emitted by burning fossil fuels such as coal or oil, among other things. Research has shown that none of the other warm periods in the past 20 million years had such a high concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, he said.

"It is clear it is human-induced," Reidel said.

Scientists are still trying to determine what changes the Northwest may experience from global warming. But Reidel said it was clear that stream flows would be reduced as the glaciers shrank, affecting the region's extensive system of hydroelectric dams and salmon and other fish.

Reidel said summer flows in one drainage in the North Cascades had dropped by 25 percent; if the glaciers disappear they'll fall by another 20 percent.

"Some reservoirs get 20, 30 and even 40 percent of their water during the summer from glaciers," he said.

Reidel said no one knew for sure whether Washington state's mountain glaciers would disappear eventually.

"Without a doubt, global warming is real," he said. "We need to get past that debate. People are paying attention to what is happening to the glaciers in Washington state. They could change even more rapidly if we reach a certain threshold."


Here are some quick facts on glaciers in Washington state:

-The 25 major glaciers on Mount Rainier collectively form the largest collection of permanent ice on a single U.S. mountain outside Alaska. They cover about 34 square miles or about 1 cubic mile.

-The North Cascades National Park has 318 glaciers, or about 60 percent of the land covered by glaciers in the United States outside Alaska. The park and nearby areas have about 42 square miles of ice.

-Long ago, mile-thick glaciers flowing down from the Olympic Mountains gouged out Puget Sound, isolating the Olympic Peninsula from the mainland. The Olympics have about 18 square miles of ice.

Source: National Resources Defense Council

© 2006 McClatchy Washington Bureau and wire service sources.
All Rights Reserved.

Informant: binstock

Cities in peril as Andean glaciers melt

Ice sheets expected to last centuries could disappear in 25 years, threatening water supplies

John Vidal,
environment editor
Tuesday August 29, 2006
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/story/0,,1860206,00.html

View from the top ... Two images of the Upsala glacier in Argentina show the retreat of the ice (top: 1928; bottom: 2004). Photograph: Greenpeace/Reuters

Andean glaciers are melting so fast that some are expected to disappear within 15-25 years, denying major cities water supplies and putting populations and food supplies at risk in Colombia, Peru, Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador, Argentina and Bolivia.

The Chacaltaya glacier in Bolivia, the source of fresh water for the cities of La Paz and El Alto, is expected to completely melt within 15 years if present trends continue. Mount Huascarán, Peru's most famous mountain, has lost 1,280 hectares (3,163 acres) of ice, around 40% of the area it covered only 30 years ago. The O'Higgins glacier in Chile has shrunk by nine miles in 100 years and Argentina's Upsala glacier is losing
14 metres (46ft) a year.

Although a few glaciers in southern Patagonia are increasing in size, almost all near the tropics are in rapid retreat. Some glaciers in Colombia are now less than 20% of the mass recorded in 1850 and Ecuador could lose half its most important glaciers within 20 years.

The rate of glacier retreat has shocked scientists, says a report on the effects of global warming in Latin America by 20 UK-based environment and development groups who have drawn on national scientific assessments. Their study says climate change is accelerating the deglaciation phenomenon.

"The speeding up of the ... process is a catastrophic danger," says Carmen Felipe, president of Peru's water management institute. In the short term, the president says, it could cause overflows of reservoirs and trigger mudslides, and in the longer term cut water supplies.

According to the Colombian institute of hydrology, back in 1983 the five major glaciers in El Cocuy national park were expected to last at least
300 years, but measurements taken last year suggest that they may all disappear within 25 years. Meanwhile, the ice sheet on the Ecuadorean volcano Cotopaxi and its glacier has shrunk by 30% since 1976.

"The [drastic melt] forces people to farm at higher altitudes to grow their crops, adding to deforestation, which in turn undermines water sources and leads to soil erosion and putting the survival of Andean cultures at risk," says the report by the Working Group on Climate Change and Development, which includes the International Institute for Environment and Development, Christian Aid, Cafod, WWF, Greenpeace and Progressio.

Their report, Up in Smoke, says snow and rainfall patterns in South America and the Caribbean are becoming less predictable and more extreme. "East of the Andes, rainfall has been increasing since about 1970, accompanied by more destructive, sudden deluges. Meanwhile, the last two hurricane seasons in the Caribbean rim have caused $12bn (£6.3bn) damage to countries other than the US. Tropical storms are expected to become more destructive as climate change intensifies. Climate change models predict more rainfall in eastern South America and less in central and southern Chile with a likelihood of greater and opposite extremes. The
2005 drought in the Amazon basin was probably the worst since records began."

Rises in sea level are expected to be especially severe in the region over the next 50 years, with 60 of Latin America's 77 largest cities located on the coast. The first hurricanes have recently hit south of the equator line in Brazil. "The net effect ... is to reduce the capacity of natural ecosystems to act as buffers against extreme weather."

"What we are seeing are many more negative and cumulative impacts. The larger the rate of [climate] change, the more the adverse effects predominate. Climate change is set to turn an already rough ride into an impossible one," says the report, which adds that the impact of climate change is "hugely" magnified by existing environmental abuse.

It proposes that Latin American governments do not repeat the mistakes made by past and present North American and European governments. Several countries in the region are proposing a new generation of mega dams which would displace thousands more people and destroy vast areas of the Brazilian Amazon. The new importance of soya, both as a food and biofuel crop, could also devastate the environment, leading to a battle for land between companies.

Large-scale coal, oil, and copper mining not only threaten fragile environments, says the report, but in some cases can physically endanger remaining glaciers and greatly increase climate changing emissions. "The Pascua Lama project on the borders of Chile and Argentina intends to move three glaciers that cover gold, silver and copper deposits. The glaciers sustain the mountain and valley ecosystems and there are fears that toxic wastes used in the mining will contaminate land and water," says the report.

Yesterday, the groups called on rich countries to urgently reduce greenhouse gas emissions and proposed that Latin America and the Caribbean governments be helped to reduce their vulnerability to extreme weather.

"The only option we have, apart from demanding that developed countries take responsibility for the damages that climate change is causing, is to try to neutralise the adverse impacts that are [already] upon us. It is time to rethink the model of international aid," said Juan Maldonado, former Colombian environment minister and president of the UN convention on biological diversity.


"With each new flood, drought or hurricane in Latin America, precious gains in poverty reduction are lost. Extreme weather is set to cause massive loss of life in developing countries throughout the region. The international community must invest more in helping poor communities cope with the effect of climate change," said Simon Trace, chief executive of Practical Action.

The world's many thousands of glaciers have been stable or in slow retreat for more than 100 years but since around 1980 they have mostly been retreating drastically. The fastest decline is in the Himalayas, the Arctic, the Alps, the Rockies and the tropics. Most glaciologists believe this natural phenomenon is being accelerated by global warming. The effects of glacier melt are expected to be severe. Hundreds of millions of people in Asia and Latin America are dependent on glacier water. A reduction in runoff will affect the ability to irrigate crops and will reduce summer stream flows to keep dams and reservoirs replenished. In Norway, the Alps, and the Pacific north-west, glacier runoff is important for hydropower. If all the ice on the polar icecaps were to melt, the oceans would rise an estimated 70 metres (230ft). But even a small melt will affect coastal life.

Informant: binstock

Cindy Sheehan: Celebrating Irrelevancy!

Cindy Sheehan: "A huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders now. The anti-war movement is strong and thriving and it no longer needs a 'face.' I have been promoted to irrelevancy and am feeling pretty darn good about that accomplishment!"


Totaler Herrschaftsanspruch über Erwerbslose

„Fragwürdige Stellenangebote können sich in ein Regionales Arbeitsvermittlungszentrum (RAV) einschleichen. Die Arbeitsmarkt- und Datenschutzbehörden sind herausgefordert. Evelyne Meinen (Pseudonym) hatte im Aushang ihres RAV ein Stellenangebot der Firma EUTAC (Pseudonym) entdeckt. Sie meldete ihr Interesse an und erhielt umgehend die Aufforderung, ihren Lebenslauf und ihre Arbeitszeugnisse, zusammen mit zwei ausgefüllten Fragebogen, einzusenden. „Erst wenn wir Ihre Antwort erhalten haben, werden wir Sie eventuell zu einem Vorstellungsgsspräch einladen“, dämpfte die Arbeitgeberin gleich allfällige Hoffnungen der Erwerbslosen…“ Artikel aus „Hälfte –Unabhängiger Mediendienst zur Arbeit und zur Erwerbslosigkeit“ vom 21.08.2006 (pdf) http://www.labournet.de/internationales/ch/datendt.pdf

Aus: LabourNet, 29. August 2006

What might Paine have said about Bush?

by Sherwood Ross


Peculiarly, a lot of what American patriot Tom Paine wrote in 1775 about the British Crown seems to apply to President Bush today. ... As historian John Keane wrote in his excellent Tom Paine: A Political Life (Little, Brown and Co.), despots -- as Paine saw them -- plunder 'the pockets and lives of their subjects, since that is the most effective way of raising and feeding armies and making their subjects afraid, obedient, and willing to pay taxes. Wars between despotic states thereby tend to increase rulers' lust for power over their own populations. War, wrote Paine, is 'the art of conquering at home' [original italics].' And so we are, indeed, conquered at home. We live under a regime that can arrest and imprison any of us for as long as it likes, one that denies our privacy, scraps our international treaties, and shreds our Bill of Rights. We been given no honest reason for launching the war on Iraq. The real reason most probably is oil, just as Paine wrote that the reason King George III made war on America was because 'her crime is property'...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Just what is so Christian about Bush?


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Katrina's second crisis

Tom Paine
by Van Jones & James Rucker


Last year, Americans met a massive human tragedy with a massive opening of our homes and our hearts. But as we enter the 12th month of this ongoing crisis in the Gulf Coast, it is clear that charity alone won't do. For too many of those whose lives were uprooted and overturned by Hurricane Katrina, the horrors of those first awful weeks in the fall of 2005 have given way to new fears, new struggles and new displacements. Many are not much better off than they were 12 months ago; some are arguably worse off. They are trying to rebuild their lives, to prevent the loss of their battered homes, to find jobs and to take care of their children. But despite the initial outpouring of support, those who were left behind in August 2005 are being left behind again. This is the second crisis of Katrina. How did it come to this? Why, when our individual actions exemplified such deep empathy and compassion, has our collective response fallen so short? Why, when we did so much as individuals to knit a fabric of community around those who lost everything, do we find our national safety net in such tatters?


After the deluge

In These Times
by Jane Slaughter


'In New Orleans, the history of work in this country over the last 15 years was compressed into six months,' says Saket Soni, an organizer for the New Orleans Worker Justice Coalition, one of several groups reaching out to workers in the post-flood city. To give workers a voice in its reconstruction, he says, the Coalition must somehow bring together new Latino immigrants with displaced New Orleanians, mostly African Americans, who are still struggling to return to the city. Before the levees broke, Latinos made up three percent of New Orleans' population. Today, they’ve risen to 20 percent, as immigrants seeking work in demolition and construction have arrived from other U.S. cities and from south of the border. A study by Tulane University and the University of California, Berkeley found that nearly half the reconstruction workers in the area are Latinos...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

US not ready for disaster

Lakeland Ledger

Their confidence shaken by Katrina, most Americans don't think the nation is ready for another major disaster, a new AP-Ipsos poll finds. Poor people are more likely to fear becoming victims of the next disaster. The survey, conducted one year after the devastating hurricane and with much of New Orleans still in shambles, found diminishing faith in the government's ability to deal with emergencies. It also gave President Bush poor marks for his handling of the storm's aftermath...


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Brown says White House wanted him to lie

The ousted head of the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency says
the White House wanted him to lie about the response to Hurricane


From Information Clearing House

The Americanization of Canada


From Information Clearing House

The End of Iraq: How American Incompetence Created a War Without End


Peter Galbraith discusses his book. He describes his experiences in Iraq, his impressions of the current situation and the leaders in Iraq & the administration.


With thousands of Iraqis killed at hand of US soldiers, only few were charged


A review of military cases has found that the majority of US soldiers who served in Iraq and charged in the deaths of Iraqi civilians have been acquitted, found guilty of relatively minor offenses or given administrative punishments without trials.


From Information Clearing House

Washington is sending a clear message to Iraqis: "We're here to stay"

Bush 'palace' shielded from Iraqi storm

Compliant and subservient: Jimmy Carter's explosive critique of Tony Blair

By John Preston and Melissa Kite

Where's the outrage?

By William Neikirk

U.S. troops have been accused of committing atrocities in Iraq. Americans should care.

Where's the outrage?

By Gary Kamiya

A real antiwar movement would end our Iraq disaster. But the middle class doesn't care enough to protest, so the kids who go to community college will keep dying.


Forgotten Communities, Unmet Promises


Tell President Bush to keep his promises to Katrina and Rita survivors

You can help get residents of the Gulf Coast back on the right track to an equitable recovery. Families cannot rebuild on their own and private initiatives are not enough. The government must do its part to help the region and its most vulnerable people recover.

Contact President Bush and demand that the government keep its promises to help the most vulnerable people affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Click here to view a slideshow of how one family is still living in a FEMA trailer one year later.

Another miserable milestone for Bush's war


'We will combat mast bid'

By Nione Meakin

Protesters in Rose Hill make known their views about a proposed mast last year

Neighbours in Rose Hill, Oxford, have vowed for a third time to fight T-Mobile's plans to put a 10ft phone mast on a green space.

The company was last year refused permission for the mast at the junction of Courtland Road and Rose Hill and an appeal against the city council's decision was also thrown out.

Now it has made another application for permission to site a mast on the spot. Instead of the original green monopole, the mast will look like a telegraph pole and cabinets will be hidden by shrubs.

But resident Alex Tucker, who was involved in last year's campaign against the mast, said neighbours still did not want it in Rose Hill and would launch a new fight.

She added: "This is an area of regeneration where planners and developers are trying to improve the look of the neighbourhood.

"The King of Prussia site is due for redevelopment shortly and when finished, it will greatly enhance the Rose Hill area. The introduction of unsightly clutter on a small green that already has its fair share would be detrimental."

Fellow campaigner Susie Goldacre said: "It would be a step backwards to use the green as a dumping ground for a phone company's commercial hardware. The community intends to protect the neighbourhood and promote improvement."

Gordon Simmons, of T-Mobile, said: "Although an earlier application was refused, the need for network coverage in this part of Oxford remains and the new application addresses the issues raised by planners and the inspector with regard to the earlier application.

"As one of five licensed 3G operators in the UK, we are currently developing our network to deliver new data services to customers and we are required to reach 80 per cent of the population by the end of 2007. This site is intended to provide access to those services in this part of Oxford."

© Copyright 2001-2006 Newsquest Media Group


Hilfe für den Sonderzug!

Das Vorbereitungsplenum der Berlin-Demonstration am 3. Juni 2006 http://www.protest2006.de

Bonn, Göttingen, im August 2006

Jeder EURO hilft uns weiter. Hilfe für den Sonderzug!

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren, liebe Freundinnen und Freunde,

wo ist die Not am größten, wo ist die Hilfe am dringlichsten, wo kann ich am besten helfen? Sicher fragt/en auch Ihr/Sie sich, was angesichts der zunehmenden Repressionen und Verarmungsprogramme für die durch unsere Regierungen an den Rand gedrängten Menschen und deren Notlagen am sinnvollsten zu tun ist. Schließlich kann man nicht jederzeit überall hilfreich sein, und viele von Ihnen/Euch befinden sich gerade selbst in diesen Notlagen.

Unser erfolgreich begonnener Protest und die Arbeit von beteiligten Organisationen sind gefährdet, da immer noch ein Defizit von ca. 11.500 EUR für den Sonderzug besteht!

Der Sonderzug aus Nordrhein-Westfalen nach Berlin war ein wichtiges Symbol für die Mobilisierung zur Demonstration am 3. Juni. Dies gerade im Hinblick darauf, dass viele der Demonstrationsteilnehmer aus NRW selbst von Hartz IV abhängig sind und sich eine Fahrt sonst nicht hätten leisten können. Es gab jedoch trotz eines vorher vorgelegten schriftlichen Angebotes der Eisenbahngesellschaft schwere Probleme, woraufhin ein Anwalt eingeschaltet werden musste: - So wurde der Preis im Angebot für den Sonderzug unerwartet erhöht, und nur durch anwaltliche Hilfe konnte die erneute Vorlage eines, zwar erhöhten, dennoch einigermaßen reellen Angebotes für den Sonderzug überhaupt durchgesetzt werden. Scheinbar hatte die Firma kein Interesse mehr an dem Zustandekommen eines Vertrages. Der Fahrplan wurde ebenfalls nur mit anwaltlicher Hilfe am späten Freitag-Nachmittag zur Verfügung gestellt. Schließlich fuhr der Sonderzug am Samstag, frühmorgens, kurz vor vier Uhr, von Koblenz aus in Richtung Berlin ab. Vielleicht weil noch immer kein Fahrplan vorlag, zeichnete sich im Laufe des Freitags ab, dass viele Menschen, die sich vorher für die Fahrt angemeldet hatten, "absprangen". Der Sonderzug war somit nicht ausgelastet. Eine Stiftung und eine politisch engagierte Privatperson hatten den Sonderzug vorfinanziert, für Euch/Sie. Die Gelder der Stiftung sollten für wichtige Projekte eingesetzt werden, um Hartz-IV-Betroffenen aus ihrer schlimmsten Not zu helfen. Das Geld fehlt jetzt.

Diese Hilfe ist aber unverzichtbar. Ebenso brauchen wir auch für die geplanten Herbstaktionen dringend Geld!

- Die Verschärfungen, Repressalien gegen Arbeitslose nehmen täglich zu.
- Die Entziehung von Rechten wird systematisch ausgeweitet. Hier können nur Organisationen helfen.
- Gemeinsame Protestaktionen zusammen mit den Gewerkschaften sollen im Herbst ausgeweitet werden.

Diese und noch weitere Projekte werden im Vordergrund stehen. Gerade Kinder von Hartz-IV-Betroffenen leiden am schlimmsten unter diesen Zuständen. Jedes 7. Kind in Deutschland lebt inzwischen in Armut. Dies wäre nicht nötig, und unsere Politik muss durch Protest zur Umkehr gezwungen werden. Dies können wir aber nur gewährleisten, wenn die Organisationen, die täglich den Menschen helfen, nicht dadurch geschwächt werden, weil sie keine finanziellen Mittel mehr haben.

Helfen Sie uns bei unserer Arbeit mit Ihrer Spende! Ein EURO ist schon ein wertvoller Beitrag. Wir sind für jede Spende dankbar! Spenden bitte an:

Spendenkonto: Empfängerin: Laura von Wimmersperg, Berliner Sparkasse, BLZ: 100 500 00, Konto: 60 102 191 81, Stichwort "Sonderzug" bitte nicht vergessen!

Edgar Schu, Martin Behrsing

Bildmaterial Presse http://www.erwerbslosenforum.de/images/behrsing.jpg

Weitere Informationen und Kontakt Pressekontakt Erwerbslosen Forum Deutschland
Martin Behrsing
Schickgasse 3
53117 Bonn
Ruf: 0228 2495594
Fax: 01805 039000 3946

After the Deluge: Overcoming Labor Conflicts in New Orleans

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How "Merchant Coal" Is Changing the Face of America

Across the nation, 153 new coal plants are currently proposed, enough to power some 93 million homes. Of those 153 proposals, only 24 intend to adopt technology to limit carbon emissions. Many are speculative "merchant coal" plants, which aim to sell the power - or even the plant itself - to the highest bidder.


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Death to the Incandescent

People are finally starting to take to the streets to protest climate change. But for those who won't or can't do that, there are plenty of other actions you can take now to damp down climate change. On the top of the list, says Kelpie Wilson, is getting rid of grossly inefficient incandescent light bulbs.


Stop the Abuse of Power


Congress may be on recess, but we're not taking a break from the fight to protect the Constitution and the rule of law. This week and in the weeks to come, you have a unique opportunity to make a difference and help keep the pressure on your elected officials. Many senators and representatives are home meeting with and listening to the people they represent, which includes you.

We urge you to meet your lawmakers while they're home this week and ask them to stand up to the Bush administration's ongoing abuses of power. Get started right now with our simple instructions and a list of questions to ask.

President Bush has shown an alarming and reckless disregard for the rule of law. He has directed the National Security Agency to wiretap Americans without a warrant and violated long-standing treaties designed to protect basic human rights. Our federal lawmakers need to hear from people like you that these actions are unacceptable and cannot be allowed to continue.

You can make the case for civil liberties with your elected officials by meeting with them face to face while they're home this week. Ask the tough questions, demand the truth, and hold them and the administration accountable. Lawmakers need to hear from their constituents that America can, and must be, both safe and free.

Already, our courts are rejecting the president's claim to unlimited power. A federal court in Detroit recently found the NSA's warrantless spying program both illegal, and unconstitutional. And the Supreme Court ruled that President Bush's military commissions were illegal. Votes are expected on these issues as soon as Congress returns in September, but it's important that Congress act to protect, and not undermine, the Constitution. Your elected officials must listen and remember that the president cannot act with indifference to Congress or the Constitution.

With pivotal mid-term elections looming, the Republican-controlled Congress will likely push hard for symbolic, divisive votes on bills that will exploit the anniversary of September 11, 2001 and the public's fears, while doing little to actually make anyone safer. The election season is no excuse to rush through legislation that will chip away at the very freedoms and protections that define us as a nation.

Our elected representatives should not legalize warrantless NSA surveillance of Americans without protecting our individual rights and without any meaningful checks on executive power. And lawmakers should not give their blessing to military commissions already rejected by the Supreme Court. Your representative and senators need to hear from you. Please take action online now.

Lawmakers will continue to hear from the ACLU. But while they're home for August recess, we hope they'll hear from you too.

Together, we can stop this president's unprecedented abuse of power. Thank you for standing with us and for the rule of law.


Caroline Fredrickson, ACLU

Caroline Fredrickson Director,
Washington Legislative Office American Civil Liberties Union

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Residents win in phone mast fight

RESIDENTS at Low Stanners in Morpeth have won their battle to prevent a four-storey telephone mast from overshadowing their homes.

Mobile phone giant O2 hoped to erect the 20-metre pole with three antennas at Wellway Garage.

The mast, which would have stood metres from the River Wansbeck, has been rejected by Castle Morpeth Council's planners.

Nearby homeowners at Staithes Lane sent a 40-signature petition to the authority's development services committee to oppose the structure.

They claimed that the mast, four times taller than the garage itself, would become a health hazard for local children.

Isobel Pringle, of Staithes Lane, said at the meeting: "The residents of Low Stanners do not want a 73feet high telephone mast on their doorsteps.

"Some are worried that the value of their homes will drop and we are all concerned because there is still a huge question mark over how these things affect your health.

"And there are no complaints about signals on mobile phones from people who live here so I don't see why this mast is necessary."

She added: "We live amidst trees and rivers, that's Morpeth's motto.

"How can a giant telephone mast next to the river fit into the Government-funded Castles, Woods and Water project?"

Committee member Coun Edward Trevelyan said: "This is a very simple application for us. It is against planning guidelines and would impact on the local area. It must be refused."

An identical application from 02 for a 20-metre pole at Bridge Street was rejected by borough planners earlier this year.

Planning officers will now work with the company to find suitable sites outside the town centre.

Hugh Edmundson, head of the development services department, said: "So far 02 has targeted the town centre which is going to be unsuccessful but there may be more suitable, elevated sites in the outskirts of Morpeth."

Officer Mike McCourt added: "The company has now exhausted all possible sites in the town but still has an obligation to provide its customers with network coverage."

Councillors voted unanimously to reject 02's proposals.

28 August 2006

All rights reserved © 2006 Johnston Press Digital Publishing.


Real wages of US workers falling despite economic ‘growth’


Informant: jensenmk

From ufpj-news

Judge says No to NSA Wiretaps; We Say Yes to Impeachment!

ACTION PAGE: http://www.usalone.com/stacey/pnum306.php

U.S. District Court Judge Anna Taylor struck down the warrantless surveillance program saying it violated the rights to Free Speech and Privacy as well as the Separation of Powers enshrined in the Constitution. While the ruling was immediately appealed by the Bush Administration which wants no restrictions on it's right to act as King of the United States, this is the first time we, as Progressives, have had Federal support for our position.

We must now do something that is very important. While the Congress is on recess, we must flood The Hill with your letters demanding that no law be passed to override the eventual decision of any Court on this Wireless, Warrantless Surveillance Program! This is the beginning of the Road to Impeachment.

Already there are bills on the The Hill that would allow the program to go forward with the most coursory of inspection. These are bills designed to allow the Bush Administration to continue for 2 1/2 more years of King-like powers without the restriction of any Congressional Oversight.

We must not let that happen! If we flood The Hill, to both Republican and Democratic incumbents alike, they will know the depth of our committment. Republican incumbents, in particular, are beginning to distance themselves from The President. A strong showing of opposition now, prior to their Congressional Election, will serve notice to distance themselves even more and change directions.

Join thousands of others who are submitting the action form below and send your words and emotions to Congress! Let them know exactly how you feel on this overwhelmingly important issue. This is, friends, the first break in the wall that the Bush Administration has tried to erect between the Courts and themselves. This is an Impeachable offense. I believe this is the beginning of the end of the Bush Administration. But we must push and push and push some more to make it happen.

Let's make use of this opportunity! Join me in writing your letter with passion and, and encourage everyone else you know to do the same.

ACTION PAGE: http://www.usalone.com/stacey/pnum306.php

This alert is brought to you through the activism of Stacey Tallitsch, running for the U.S. House in the 1st Congressional district, and one of the leading progressive voices in the state of Louisiana. Many of you have already submitted his action page calling for the troops in Iraq to start coming home now, a policy that is more surely correct with every passing state of emergency in Baghdad.

Stacey has been running call to action radio spots in this district , calling for an end of the obstinate occupation of Iraq, a military escapade which has brought nothing but death and destruction to both their country and our own. And he has produced a new one on the impeachment issue. You can hear the new spot on this page.

RADIO SPOT DONATIONS: http://www.usalone.com/stacey/donations.php

Nobody can predict how a particular race will turn out. But we know that the spots we ran on impeachment had tremendous secondary impact, as TWO other groups were inspired to run their own call to action ads on this issue as a result of the investment we made in this action. If you are able to do so, please make whatever donation you can to continue the stand we are taking on issue after issue.

Please take action NOW, so we can win all victories that are supposed to be ours, and forward this message to everyone else you know.

Powered by The People's Email Network
Copyright 2006, Patent pending, All rights reserved


Lulatsch für Großenritte

50 Meter hoher Mobilfunk-Mast kommt ins Gewerbegebiet - Morgen Information

Von Ingrid Jünemann

Baunatal. Franco Fili ist besorgt. Der Betreiber eines Autoreparatur-Betriebs in der Rostocker Straße sieht dem 50 Meter hohen Mobilfunk-Masten, der im südwestlichen Teil der Straße in Großenritte gebaut werden soll, mit sehr gemischten Gefühlen entgegen. Schließlich stehe die Strahlung solcher Antennen weiterhin im Verdacht, gesundheitsschädlich zu sein. Und rundherum gebe es schon genug Mobilfunk-Anlagen. Hätte er das früher gewusst, sagt Fili, "hätte ich hier nicht gebaut".

Warum der Funkmast aufgestellt wird, darüber will die Stadt Baunatal am Mittwoch vor Ort informieren. "Wir wollen das steuern", sagt Herbert Jäger, Leiter des Fachbereichs Bau und Umwelt im Rathaus. Steuern heißt: Mobilfunk-Betreiber dürfen in Außenbereichen sowie Gewerbe- und Industriegebieten Antennen aufstellen, dafür werden reine Wohngebiete und die Umgebung von Schulen, Kindergärten oder Altenheimen zu Tabuzonen erklärt. Ein modellhaftes Vorhaben, auf das viele andere Kommunen mit Interesse schauen.

Das Gewerbegebiet Großenritte gehört danach zu den so genannten Positivstandorten: Grünes Licht für Mobilfunk-Firmen. In dem Quartier arbeiten allerdings nicht nur Menschen, hier gibt es auch Wohnungen. Doch als Mischgebiet für Gewerbe und Wohnen ist laut Stadt nur das Areal nördlich der Rostocker Straße im Übergang zum Neubaugebiet Am obersten Heimbach ausgewiesen. Wohnhäuser stehen außerdem zwischen Kieler Straße und Bahnhofstraße.

Wo jedoch der neue Mast hin soll, "ist Gewerbegebiet", so Jäger. Dieser Standort habe nach geltendem Recht genehmigt werden müssen. Warum das so ist, wollen Stadt, Bauaufsicht des Landkreises, ein Gutachter und der Mobilfunk-Betreiber beim Ortstermin erläutern. Nach dem Wissensstand im Rathaus soll der Antennen-Lulatsch im kommenden Jahr gebaut werden.

An der Dürerstraße in Altenbauna gibt es ebenfalls Sorgen in Sachen Mobilfunk. Eberhard Melzer etwa, der in dem Gebiet südlich des Stadtzentrums lebt, hat überhaupt kein Verständnis dafür, dass kürzlich auf das Hochhaus Dürerstraße 12 eine weitere Antenne kam. Denn da stehen schon mehrere. Auch Melzer fürchtet schädliche Strahlen.

"Das ist ein generell genehmigter Standort", sagt dazu Herbert Jäger. Grund: Der Bereich gehöre zum so genannten Kerngebiet der Stadt, firmiere also nicht als Wohngebiet. Da besitze die Stadt keine Handhabe, weitere Mobilfunk-Anlagen zu verhindern.

Bürgerinformation der Stadt: Mittwoch, 30. August, 17 Uhr, Rostocker Straße 55.




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