Mittwoch, 10. Januar 2007

Save Our Seafood Action Alert: Stop Toxic Mercury Pollution

The battle over the Corps' nasty Regional General Permit proposal in Mississippi

Kucinich Plan For Iraq: Withdrawal And Restoring Our Republic


Informant: EASTMAN


Kucinich Plan For Iraq: Withdrawal And Restoring Our Republic

From Supreme Law Firm

My Adventures in Psychopharmacology


Informant: rafeswhiterose

Step It Up: Author Bill McKibben calls for an April 14 national rally demanding action on climate change

A Brilliant Heat Stroke

Author Bill McKibben calls for an April 14 national rally demanding action on climate change. He calls it Step It Up.

Bringing in new dealers doesn't change the odds at Casino de Bush

Just Shuffling The Deck

In this make-or-break year, can environmentalists unite around a simple agenda for saving the world?

Harmonizing Shades Of Green

Using The War To Win

by David Corn,

What do McCain and Edwards have in common? Their spins of the war could make them presidential nominees.

Pelosi: "We Will Not Be Swiftboated on These Issues"

"Democrats oppose the escalation. Senator Reid and I signed a letter to that effect to the president last week," said Pelosi, on a 35-minute call with leading Progressive bloggers. "And we're making a very strong differentiation between supporting our troops, which we do - those in the field now - and giving a blank check to the president for an escalation of the war."

Raptors, Robots, and Rods From God: The Nightmare Weaponry of Our Future

We are not winning the war on terrorism (and would not be even if we knew what victory looked like) or the war in Iraq. Our track record in Afghanistan, as well as in the allied "war" on drugs, is hardly better. Yet the Pentagon is hard at work, spending your money, planning and preparing for future conflicts of every imaginable sort.

With Iraq Speech, Bush to Pull Away From His Generals

Pentagon insiders say members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff have long opposed the increase in troops and are only grudgingly going along with the plan because they have been promised that the military escalation will be matched by renewed political and economic efforts in Iraq.


Brooding Prince's Soliloquy

Robert Scheer writes: "To surge or not to surge, that is the question. As our prince proposes, once again, to take arms against a sea of troubles, he responds not to the disaster that he has visited upon Iraq, but rather embraces a desperate strategy for salvaging what remains of his reign."

Hooked on Drug Money

Dean Baker writes: "It's payback time, as the lobbyists say in Washington. One of the key planks in the Democrats' election platform was changing the Medicare drug benefit by allowing Medicare to negotiate lower prices with the pharmaceutical industry. While this may not have been as important to their victory as the war, voters were outraged by the Medicare drug bill approved by the Republican Congress. The benefit was designed to enrich the pharmaceutical and insurance industries at the expense of taxpayers and beneficiaries."

Terror gegen mutmaßlichen Terrorismus

In Somalia nutzt die Bush-Regierung die Situation, mit Luftangriffen mutmaßliche al-Qaida-Terroristen zu liquidieren, tötet aber dabei wieder Zivilisten und riskiert, Somalia zu einem neuen Afghanistan und Irak zu machen.

Der Nuklearindustrie verpflichtete Politiker instrumentalisieren den russischen Ölstreit um Stimmung gegen den Atomausstieg zu machen

Uran in den Tank?


"Eine weltweite, perfekt organisierte Kampagne"

Are the dead porpoises on Scottish beaches more evidence of global warming?

Informant: binstock


By Rob Dunn, Ph. D.
Seed Magazine
January 7, 2007

Human habitation has been, and is increasingly, playing a direct role not only in the extinction of species, but in their evolution. By our own actions, we may be accompanied into the future by ever more diverse pests and pathogens, and may leave behind what we value most -- elephants, tigers, and others of the earth's great megabeasts.

Evolution is often thought of as a slow process relative to our life spans, one that we have played no part in. We imagine it to have occurred in the far distant past. Until recently, the study of big evolutionary changes has rested on an examination of fossil remains and molecular evidence of the deep past. But, from a biological perspective, we can see that evolution is actually happening now and more quickly than we had previously assumed. Moreover, the new centers of evolution are neither tropical forests nor east African lakes but, instead, those habitats and resources most closely allied with us -- our human habitats and ourselves.

First, some context. A consideration of previous periods of speciation suggests that the evolution of new species occurs most rapidly in big habitats with lots of resources. Where are those habitats now? In the last five thousand years the earth has gone from a place dominated by forests and grasslands to one dominated by humans, agriculture, and cities. The Atlantic forest of Brazil, for example, fragmented and dwindling, is unlikely to be an important source of new species in the future. The Amazon and a few other large native habitats may still be important, but less so than they have been historically. Due to our destruction of habitat, we have already extinguished hundreds of birds and mammal species, not to mention the other multitudes. As it stands, up to 95 percent of all the terrestrial world is actively managed for human uses.

The world, as we have rendered it, is now chiefly comprised of our crops, the consumers of those crops (including we humans), our own pathogens at the top of the food chain, and, on the bottom, as it were, the decomposers of our waste. These groups now account for the vast majority of the living matter on earth.

More than half of the species on earth are parasites and, for a subset of those parasites, we represent a tremendous and growing resource. Humans are now six and a half billion strong and those billions represent pounds of resources for needy parasites. We are bodies full of unexploited niches (along with a number of exploited ones). As we expand our numbers, we are expanding evolutionary possibilities for microbes that can live on us and in us. At the same time, we are introducing new selection pressures which are working to speed the evolution of those microbes. We are covered in antibiotics, antimicrobials -- anti-everything -- which exert strong selection for the evolution of resistant and more virulent forms. We have seen, in the last 60 years, bacteria, protists, helminthes and other parasites all independently, and frequently, evolve resistance to our anti-parasite treatments. In addition, we are witnessing the origin of new human pathogens, such as HIV, either when pathogens switch hosts to take advantage of the resource humans represent, or through the divergence of human pathogens.

If the lesson that parasites offer is insufficiently clear, we can turn to our commensals, the rodents, fruit flies, lice, and doves of the world for an even clearer picture of our recent past and perhaps future. As we spread and our cultures change, we have affected not only our microbes but actually caused the speciation of our commensals. We know, for example, that house mice evolved a commensal relationship with humans early in our history and since then, as they spread with us around the globe and adapted to new habitats, have speciated into no fewer than seven species. Drosophila melanogaster (the common fruit fly) appears to have evolved from a forest species in Africa and also moved with us as we've migrated. It is no longer capable of breeding with the populations from which it apparently originated and this in relatively few human generations. The list goes on. Rats and mice that we have introduced to islands, via our ocean-going vessels, have evolved traits over just a few hundred years which ultimately allow them to take better advantage of island resources.

Where we have industrialized agriculture, weeds have evolved to chemically mimic our crops to avoid the herbicide. Insect pests have evolved resistance to DDT and to the pesticides that have followed. We have countered with genetically engineered crops. Already there are insect species resistant to the defenses of those crops. When we add new species of crops, insects in turn rapidly switch to those. Even our most degraded landscapes offer possibilities. Many independent plant lineages have evolved tolerance to heavy metal pollutants. Insects have, in response, evolved resistance to the heavy metals those plants sequester in their leaves.

The more we look at the world around us, the more it seems to be evolving at our hand, albeit without our meaning it to. As we inadvertently introduce thousands of species to new habitats, species evolve. In some of the most detailed studies to date, researchers in Australia have shown that the poisonous cane toad, which was introduced by humans from Central America, has exerted a selective pressure on the local snakes, killing those that eat cane toads. Now, apparently, since the cane toads' introduction, because snakes with bigger mouths ate cane toads, died, and passed on no genes, at least one species of snake has evolved a smaller mouth. Those are the ones that have survived.

What we must begin to come to terms with is that we may be seeing the beginning of a new adaptive radiation, a new burgeoning of life -- but it is not necessarily the one we might hope for. The big creatures we value so highly -- indeed treasure -- will not be able to regain a stronghold in the face of our encroachments. Indeed, they breed, and so evolve, more slowly than the species mentioned here. Instead, the small will inherit the earth, if it is not already theirs. The evolutionary future is pathogens, pests and guests, at least as we have currently written the story.

Wallace and Darwin met opposition when they revealed their theory of natural selection. Today, such opposition, has been "born again" as it were in the form of creation science or intelligent design. But whether one "believes" or does not believe in evolution, individuals go on mating and dying. Through time, some genes are favored and others are not. The new forms that have evolved in our anthropogenic landscapes don't care if we believe in them.

If you want a more bucolic version of the ecological future, consult a paleontologist. The paleontologists look further into the future to a time when the great evolutionary opportunities are not agricultural habitats, but are, instead, vast forests -- to a time when the seas are again filled with large species -- to a time when new large vertebrates roam new kinds of plains. They look forward in time to a world more interesting to us than our present evolutionary future. The paleontologists can do all this because they begin their discussions of future evolution with the statement, "once humans go extinct."

Rob R. Dunn is an assistant professor in the department of zoology at North Carolina State University in Raleigh.

Informant: NHNE

EU: Climate change will transform the face of the continent

Informant: binstock

Weniger Elektrosmog als vor 50 Jahren?


Dreiste Datenfälschung in der Mobilfunk-Forschung

Bush Lifts Oil-Drill Ban in Alaska's Bristol Bay

Informant: binstock


President Bush Lifts Ban on Oil Drilling in Fragile Alaska Waters

Agency Affirms Human Influence on Climate

Informant: binstock

Phone mast to be removed

Peterborough Evening Telegraph - Peterborough, England, UK

MOBILE phone operator Hutchison 3G has been ordered to pull down one of its masts in Peterborough...>

GM Grapevines & Toxic Wines

America Turns Its Back on Death Penalty

Informant: Julien Ball




Schreiben von SSK v. 22.12.2006 an LEV Saarbrücken

s. pdf Anlage

Der Mast muss weg!

Bush to Face Street Protests Over Iraq Escalation Plan

The Bush administration's plan to beef up the US military presence in Iraq is likely to create a new wave of protests across the United States in the coming days. As Bush is expected to announce his plans Wednesday to send approximately 20,000 more troops to Iraq, anti-war groups say they will hold rallies and sit-ins in dozens of cities across the nation to press the US Congress to thwart any troop escalation.

Iraq: The Way Back

"We are stuck in hell in Iraq, and everyone knows it. Even those whose only response is to go in deeper - with 'a new approach' - in this 'grave and deteriorating' situation," writes Bill Scheurer. "Yet, there is a way out of hell. A way back from the collective Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that led us astray after September 11, to return to our truer and better selves."

Three Thousand Plus One

John Cory writes: "President Bush will unleash the latest formula of folly in Iraq: the 'surge' doctrine, embroidered with a theme of 'sacrifice.' Voices of the dead scream in silent sorrow, and the world watches aghast at the fiery failure. And yet, the man-child king demands one more chance. The coming speech matters little and cannot hide the bloody lies and deception that have taken a toll on America."

Mystery as thousands of birds fall from sky

A classic imperial predicament

Boston Globe
by H.D.S. Greenway


Were Saddam Hussein's flawed trial and disgusting death just further examples of incompetence, or were they symptoms of a deeper dilemma? What did the incident tell us about America in Iraq and the problems of trying to impose democracy by force? One has to wonder how even a star-crossed administration such as George W. Bush's and his Iraqi allies could have turned one of the world's most cruel and despicable dictators into a stoic martyr-hero, facing death calmly in the face of an officially sanctioned lynching by Shi'ite militiamen? After all, the Americans had had physical custody of Saddam for nearly three years. Was it just another bumble that led them to hand him over so quickly to such an undignified death?

Hope for a unified Iraq died with Saddam

Frontiers of Freedom
by Greg C. Reeson


No sooner had the grainy cell phone video of Saddam Hussein's execution been broadcast across on the Internet than angry mobs began to fill the streets of Iraq, protesting not only the hurried nature of the act, but the manner in which it was conducted. Both objections are crucial to understanding the reality of Iraq today, a reality that was made glaringly obvious by the scene in Saddam's death chamber: sectarian divides have widened to a point where the idea of a unified Iraq with a representative government is no longer realistic...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp


Saddam Hussein rushed to the gallows

War brings an Iraq even worse than a dictatorship

by Saritha Prabhu


Two things we've been hearing a lot after Saddam Hussein's execution are, 'the world is a better place without him' and 'Iraq is better off without him.' Is that really so? These are two very moot points. Let's examine the report card. He was, undeniably, a very bad man who killed, tortured, terrorized his own people, waged regional wars and was a general nuisance to the world body. But, on the plus side, he held together the fractious elements of his country in what was probably the only way -- with an iron fist; he was secular and was actually a bulwark against Islamic radicalism; women and Christians enjoyed some freedoms during his time. What's more, from the point of view of ordinary Iraqis, Saddam's Iraq had the markers of 'normal' life -- garbage was picked up, electricity was on, children could go to school safely, you had a job, could attend weddings and funerals, go downtown to a kebab restaurant...

Reconciliation is easier said than done

Christian Science Monitor
by Jeffrey Shaffer


Mr. Hussein was definitely a murderous tyrant who deserved to be held accountable for his crimes, but it will be bitterly ironic if his death creates a new divide within a population that’s supposed to be pulling itself together. Reconciliation is often a crucial factor in the process of building and maintaining a nation. In a perfect world, justice and reconciliation would work together to resolve collective grievances and break cycles of recrimination. I doubt that the crude video of Hussein’s hanging will encourage a spirit of national unity in Iraq. And people who taunt a condemned man on the gallows have crossed the line that separates justice from revenge...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

The REAL ID Act is in REAL trouble, it must be repealed

Numbers plus

Free Market News Network
by Jim Babka


I just learned some exciting things during a conference call with one our coalitions. The REAL ID Act is in REAL trouble. We're going to have a lot more details to share, probably later this month, but let's add to the trouble by sending the new Congress another blast on this one. ... We strongly believe this is a law that must be repealed. We also believe it can be. The new Congress hasn't heard from us yet on this one. So let's make the first noise they hear on this issue a LOUD ONE...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

The end? But we're still here

Strike the Root
by Log from Blammo


In my opinion, the vast majority of evil acts committed on this planet are not born out of malice, but from the mistaken impression that a small wrong can create a greater good. A little bit of theft can allow us to feed the hungry and shelter the homeless -- we shall call it 'tax.' A little bit of murder can allow us to make everyone else safe from killings -- we shall call it 'war.' A little bit of fraud can allow us to stimulate the economy to greater glory -- we shall call it 'standard accounting practices,' or perhaps 'fractional reserve banking.' The tax-collectors, soldiers, and number-crunchers -- or at least many of them -- believe they are actually doing the world a favor. They must believe that their means justify some end, otherwise they could not continue to pursue those means with a clear conscience...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

The hell that is Iraq

by James T. Phillips


Except for his abbreviated prayers, cut short when he dropped through the small trapdoor on the floor of the gallows, Saddam Hussein's last words -- a retort to a taunt -- were spot on: The hell that is Iraq. Hundreds of thousands of innocents have been killed in the bloodbath that has washed over Iraq since the American-led invasion in March of 2003. Thousands of willing war fighters have also died while cleansing the desert sands of insurgents, terrorists, women, and children. The figurative purgatory that was Iraq when Saddam ruled with an iron fist has become, under the thumb of George W. Bush, a literal hell on earth...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

When mayors play principal

Cato Institute
by Adam B. Schaeffer


Mayors of big cities across the country are lining up to take control of dysfunctional urban school systems. Test scores in city school districts have hit rock bottom and buildings are crumbling, while spending has soared to new heights. Washington D.C.'s new mayor Adrian M. Fenty is the latest up to bat, releasing his plan for mayoral control of the local school system last Wednesday. Chances are that Fenty will modestly improve a situation that would be difficult to make worse -- just like the big-stick mayors he'd like to emulate in Chicago, Boston, and New York. But while a dictator may make the trains run on time, only a free society can create an excellent and diverse school system...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Soldier sentenced to nine months for Iraq murders

Winchester Herald Chronicle


A 101st Airborne Division soldier who had been charged with murder in the deaths of three Iraqi detainees pleaded guilty Tuesday to a lesser charge of aggravated assault with a dangerous weapon and was sentenced to nine months in military jail. Spc. Juston R. Graber, 21, is accused with three others from the division's 187th Infantry Regiment of killing detainees during a raid of a suspected al-Qaida stronghold near Samarra, about 60 miles north of Baghdad...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

New wave of troops set for Iraq

Chico Enterprise Record


The first of up to 20,000 additional U.S. troops will move into Iraq by month's end under President Bush's new war plan, a senior defense official said Tuesday. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pledged to hold a vote on the increase, which many Democrats oppose. Details of a gradual military buildup emerged a day before Bush's planned speech to the nation, in which he also will propose a bit over $1 billion to shore up the country's battered economy and create jobs, said a second U.S. official...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Life at America's Bottom Wage

A glimpse into the lives of people who live at bottom-rung pay rates illustrates why, to supporters of the change, the minimum wage is long overdue for a raise. But it also reveals that such a boost isn't a one-step solution for the challenges that face America's poorest workers.

UN Official: Warming Leadership Needed

The chief of the United Nations' effort against climate change said Monday there is widespread recognition of the seriousness of global warming, but a lack of leadership has created a sense of helplessness.

Why the Bush "Surge" Won't Work

Most top US military officials - even members of George W. Bush's administration such as National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley - did not recommend a "surge" or escalation of troops into Iraq when they were interviewed by the Iraq Study Group last fall, says group member Leon Panetta, a former White House chief of staff under Bill Clinton. Instead of a surge - which the president plans to announce in a speech to the nation tomorrow - these officials recommended at the time that more US advisers be embedded in Iraqi units, Panetta says. That later led the bipartisan commission co-chaired by James Baker and Lee Hamilton to come to the same conclusion.

Murtha Takes Aim at Abu Ghraib

Few chapters in the US involvement in Iraq have angered Representative John Murtha more than the treatment of prisoners at Abu Ghraib. It was a major reason the Pennsylvania Democrat helped Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) add anti-torture language to the Defense Department budget in the last Congress.

Forever Gitmo?

"Will we always have Gitmo?" asks William Fisher. "Will it always be the 800-pound gorilla in the room? This week, the world marks the fifth anniversary of the arrival of the first detainees at the US naval facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. And still a growing number of people and organizations - from military officers to religious leaders to legal scholars to human rights groups - continue to label the prison a black hole of injustice and demand that it be closed."

Introduction of the Habeas Corpus Restoration Act of 2007

Introduction of the Habeas Corpus Restoration Act of 2007 (S.
185), by Sens. Specter and Leahy, January 4:

Informant: rafeswhiterose

Beneath the waves, a crisis is building

Environment Writer

When marine scientist John Reed began exploring the ocean floor off Cape Canaveral in 1975, he found towers of coral thousands of years old, teeming with grouper and black sea bass.

Returning to the spot 25 years later, the treasures that once amazed Reed were gone. In their place? Fields of rubble.

Today, though parts of the Oculina coral reefs between Daytona Beach and Fort Pierce have been protected for 20 years, much has been obliterated. And the destructive bottom trawling for shrimp and fish that's blamed for the damage still may happen on some areas of the reef.

"There's basically no federal restriction, even in this day and age, prohibiting a bottom trawler from rolling over a healthy reef and it's just ludicrous," said Reed, a senior scientist at Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution in Fort Pierce. "It's like saying, 'Oh, you can go clearcut a redwood forest.' "

In one pass, a heavy trawl may destroy delicate corals hundreds of years old, leaving thousands of tiny animals like shrimp and worms homeless and ruining the chance of successful fishing there anytime soon.

Such trawling may be trashing coral reefs worldwide, just one example of a host of ailments plaguing the world's oceans. Gleaming beauty and salty breezes still lure those who would swim, sail and fish, but the ocean's ancient image as an everlasting resource is an illusion.

"The oceans are not the pristine place people think they are," said Peter Anderson, director of Whitney Lab at Marineland. "It's staggering what we've done. For generations now we thought the oceans were a bottomless pit and they're not."

Both playground and economic backbone for coastal counties like Volusia and Flagler, healthy oceans mean safe swimming, fruitful fishing and tourist cash. The reefs, spawning grounds for countless fish species, are one measure of whether that backbone stays strong.

And with more than half the nation's population living on the coast, the strain shows.

Pressured by fishing, shipping traffic, cruise boats, a warming climate and pollution, the oceans have been overfished and polluted before being fully explored or understood.

Whales, birds and other sea life wash on to beaches, tangled in deadly debris or battered by ships. Scientists find human diseases such as herpes viruses and traces of human drugs and pollutants in their blood.


No longer do fishing boats heave under the weight of a day's catch of prize-worthy beauties. Up to 90 percent of the world's big fish, like marlin and tuna, have vanished. Fishing villages no longer thrive, their fishermen turning to other jobs as they have in Oak Hill.

Jellyfish, algae and seaweed, once held in check by balanced ecosystems, run rampant in what scientists call the "rise of slime."

Instead of flocking to the sea, tourists avoid bacteria-laden waves and toxic algae blooms, as they did in Southwest Florida last year. Such blooms cost the country an estimated $75 million a year.

Even miles from shore, the human footprint that lined the ocean with condominiums and highways leaves its heavy tread. Six-pack wrappers and bottles bob beside turtles and cavorting dolphins.


Scientists and those who live off the sea are optimistic the tide can be turned. But they wonder if there will be enough resolve and money for things like mapping the entire Oculina Bank, which may go as far north as St. Augustine.

They're encouraged by improvements seen since large areas of the bank were closed to fishing.

Fish numbers dropped dramatically when areas of Oculina coral were "annihilated," said Christopher Koenig, a Florida State University professor. But black sea bass, grouper and other fish seem to be returning.


Researchers are pleased state and federal officials now patrol the closed areas.

On a sunny morning in August, the Coast Guard cutter Shrike set out on a routine patrol of the Oculina. The crew spotted more than a dozen shrimp boats anchored just a couple of miles outside one area closed to shrimping and most kinds of fishing.

Boarding one boat, the Guardsmen checked the overnight track. The Oculina was marked on the global positioning system with a "big purple line" and the shrimpers hadn't crossed it. Other boats have and been heavily fined.

The National Marine Fisheries Service requires tracking beacons on big fishing vessels.

But delicate coral that took hundreds of years to grow won't be quickly restored.


Other reefs around the world face similar threats and are being overtaken by seaweed that thrives in water polluted with stormwater runoff and sewage. This year for the first time, two corals were listed as endangered species and the Oculina Bank's ivory tree coral was listed as a species of concern.

Brian Lapointe, a Harbor Branch scientist, found septic tanks seeping into coastal waters of the Florida Keys 25 years ago. At Looe Key, a popular snorkeling spot, he found levels of two fertilizer ingredients, ammonium nitrate and phosphate, rose more than 100 percent in 10 years in the 1990s. Such increases -- from fertilizers, pesticides and bacteria -- occur worldwide, he said, and the ocean can't dilute it all.

Scott Kraus sees the impacts of pollution on sea life in his work as vice president of research with the New England Aquarium. "People don't take the potential problems we're creating for (the ocean) seriously, because we've been dumping for years and thinking it was infinite," Kraus said.


The clamoring of scientists worldwide has drawn attention to the ocean crisis, with state and national ocean commissions calling for sweeping changes.

The fisheries service, for example, expects to create a series of Marine Protected Areas off the Southeast coast in March. The areas, including one between Jacksonville and Ormond Beach, would close key locations to fishing to give fish somewhere to feed and breed unmolested.

Many fishermen question more restrictions. To Paul Nelson, Jr. a lifelong local fisherman, it seems unconstitutional to close the ocean to a family trying to make a living as his has done for generations.

But ocean advocates say state and federal agencies must do more to ensure the ocean maintains its status as playground and economic backbone.

"We're very fortunate to have them in our backyard," Reed said, "but we also need to take the responsibility to protect them for future generations of mankind forever."


The ocean crisis: what's to blame?

The independent Pew Oceans Commission and the federal U.S. Ocean Commission studied the ocean crisis and in 2003 and 2004 blamed:

· Overexploited fisheries

· Lack of U.S. leadership on international ocean and coastal issues

· Dwindling U.S. investment in ocean and coastal research

· Inadequate funding for government oversight at every level

· No coherent ocean policy, fragmented laws, confusing jurisdictions

· A lack of federal support for emerging initiatives

What should be done?

In March, the U.S. Senate asked the group to come up with a top 10 list of actions, delivered to the Senate in June. They included:

· Adopt a national ocean policy.

· Reauthorize and improve Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, which sets procedures and limits for U.S. and foreign fishing in U.S. waters.

· Follow the United Nations convention on the Law of the Sea, which governs and regulates activities on, over and under the world's oceans.

· Establish an ocean trust fund for improved management and understanding of ocean and coastal resources; the group estimates up to $5 billion a year is needed.

· Increase funding for ocean and coastal programs, including research.

· Establish the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in law and work with the administration to improve coordination among federal agencies.

· Manage ocean resources by regional ecosystems rather than state by state.

· Begin an improved nationwide system of buoys for ocean observations.

How can you help?

DON'T LITTER: Discard trash and fishing line in containers. About 80 percent of ocean trash comes from land, mostly fast-food wrappers and plastic bags, bottles and cups.

NEVER RELEASE BALLOONS: Thousands of animals die each year from swallowing balloons. Jellyfish-eating creatures -- leatherback turtles, ocean sun fish and others -- get confused by the balloons, eat them and die.

PICK UP A PEN: Write your lawmakers at the state or federal level to ask for stronger protections for the Oculina Bank and better fishing regulations.

CURB YOUR PETS: Bag dog and cat feces and dispose of them in the trash. Don't flush cat litter down the toilet. Sewage treatment doesn't remove parasites that can harm sea otters and dolphins.

DON'T FLUSH MEDICINES OR SOLVENTS: Throw away unused pharmaceuticals, perfumes, industrial chemicals or solvents. Don't dispose of them in the toilet or down the sink. Sewage treatment doesn't remove many chemicals and dissolved drugs that can poison sea life.

MINIMIZE FERTILIZER USE: Don't apply before rainstorms. Don't use a hose to remove spills or residue from sidewalks and driveways. Sweep it up and put it in the trash.

DISCARD CHEMICALS PROPERLY: Dispose of household toxins at hazardous-waste collection centers. Recycle used motor oil and transmission fluid. When possible, use nontoxic substitutes.

COLLECT CAR-WASH RUNOFF: Don't wash cars in streets or driveways. Instead, park on lawns or go to a carwash that collects the runoff.

AVOID OVER-WATERING: Use drip irrigation whenever possible and adjust sprinklers to minimize over-spraying. Plant native plants that need less water.

PLANT A TREE: Trees slow runoff and absorb carbon dioxide and other nutrients that, otherwise, end up in the ocean.

USE ALTERNATIVE TRANSPORTATION: Consider walking, riding a bike or taking mass transit to shop or to work. Tailpipes pollute the ocean as well as the air.

SOURCES: Los Angeles Times; News-Journal researchGlossary

Terms to know to help navigate our oceans:

TRAWLING: dragging a large, baglike net by boat along the bottom of a fishing bank

OVERFISHING: to fish a body of water or geographic region to excess, depleting the stock of fish

ECOSYSTEM: a community of animals, plants and bacteria interrelated together with its physical and chemical environment

CUTTER: a small, armed, engine-powered ship used by the U.S. Coast Guard for patrol duty

AMMONIUM NITRATE: colorless, crystalline salt used in some explosives, as fertilizer, and in rocket fuel; can cause dangerous acidity in water

ENTEROCOCCUS: bacteria normally present in the intestinal tract; is used as an indicator of water quality

FECAL COLIFORM: consisting of feces, normally found in the colon; used as an indicator of disease bacteria in water

HIGH SEAS: waters beyond 200 miles of a nation's shore

DDT: powerful insecticide usually effective on contact; its use is restricted by law because of damaging environmental effects

SOURCES: Webster's New World College Dictionary; News-Journal research

Informant: binstock

There aren't many of the majestic right whales left

January 07, 2007

The Wrong Stuff

There aren't many of the majestic right whales left

Environment Writer

Belly up and floating, the right whale found last weekend near Brunswick, Ga., died brutally, shredded by a propeller.

[foto] The Florida Times-Union/Bob Mack Biologists and others examine the head of a male right whale that was found dead off the Georgia coast near Jekyll Island on Dec. 30 and was towed to Fernandina Beach. Lacerations on the whale's head and lip suggest a boat propeller may have contributed to its death. Researchers who towed it to shore counted 20 deep cuts along its 41-foot-long body. They also found a skin pattern on its head that told them it was a calf they knew, born two years ago to a mother named Columbine. He was the fifth right whale in 2006 to die as a result of human contact.

Such deaths, scientists say, happen too often as the whales cope with increasing boat traffic in a busy Atlantic Ocean. The size and number of freighters and cruise boats has grown exponentially in 20 years.

The vessels are just one danger lurking in a changing ocean. The whales have plastic in their stomachs and contaminants like DDT in their blood. And they get tangled in fishing gear. Once researchers watched helplessly as a right whale mother tried to cradle her dying baby, ensnared in fishing gear, to keep it afloat.


"They sort of embody so many of the issues facing the ocean, just by all the things they're dealing with as individual animals," said Amy Knowlton, a research scientist with the New England Aquarium in Boston.

Right whale watchers have had their own frustrating experiences with whale deaths and entanglement in Volusia and Flagler counties, where the whales migrate offshore each winter. Two dead right whales have washed onto the beach in Flagler County since 1997, and last December rescuers tried to help a right whale spotted off Volusia with both flippers tangled in fishing gear.

For those who see live whales frolicking offshore, it's exciting, said Joy Hampp, coordinator of Marineland's volunteer right whale watching project, which reported 41 whale sightings in 2005.

But, Hampp said, it can be distressing to think, "Wow, I might be seeing one of the last of the species if we're not successful in conserving them."

For a while, it seemed the whales had a chance. Hunting was banned in
1935. But, the population has hovered at fewer than 400 and may be as low as 300. Scientists say the whales could be extinct within 100 to 200 years, less if struck with a catastrophic disease.

The future of the whales rests on a tiny fraction of the group: breeding females. Knowlton said saving just two a year could turn the population around.


But a whale's migration might be compared to a pregnant woman trying to cross major highways on foot on her way to a delivery room. Seven of the country's 15 busiest ports are found along the migration route between Maine and Florida.

Nearly 70 whales have been killed by collisions or fishing gear since
1970. In 2005, the scientists begged the National Marine Fisheries Service to do something to stop the deaths. The fisheries service responded with proposed rules to slow freighters and expects to release a final rule in the spring, said spokeswoman Connie Barclay.

The shipping industry is protesting the proposal to slow boats over 65 feet to as low as 10 knots within 30 nautical miles of ports along the Eastern seaboard.

The World Shipping Council, in comments to the service, said it supports rerouting ships and tracking whales so ships can steer clear of the animals. But the council questioned why the Navy and boats less than 65 feet are exempt and said the service doesn't have evidence that slowing boats down would prevent whales from getting hit. The opposite may be true, the council wrote, because slower ships are harder to maneuver and not as noisy as a ship running at higher speeds.

The council estimates the rule could cost the industry more than $50 million a year.

Scientists like the proposed rules, although they wish the process would move faster and question why the Navy is exempt.

"The shipping companies and everyone concerned about the economic impact of slowing ships are complaining, but the fact of the matter is they are killing a couple of whales a year," said Scott Kraus, vice president of research at the New England Aquarium. "If you can slow the ships down, you can save the whales, as long as the reproduction doesn't fail."


Researchers find it difficult to single out one reason for the low reproduction. The lack of available food may be one cause, said whale expert Michael Moore with the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Massachusetts. Pollution, pesticides, fertilizers and even noise may contribute. The chemicals feed natural algae and bacteria that give off toxins that kill marine mammals.

Because they don't understand the causes, it's worrisome.

"If there's something we're doing that's creating the reproductive failure and we don't know what it is, we're going to continue to do it," Kraus said. "The whales may be the most visible charismatic consequence, but, if it's affecting right whales, it's affecting other things along the way, and that's what we should be paying attention to."


Informant: binstock

Bush's Escalation Provokes Constitutional Crisis and Progressive Mobilization

Watchdog wins release of National Reconnaissance Office documents

BP Ignores Warnings About Potential Leaks in Caspian Pipeline

"The BTC pipeline is strategically important to the West as a new source of much-needed oil,'' says John Dingell, chairman of the U.S. Congress's Energy and Commerce Committee.

From Information Clearing House

After five years of torture, Bisher is slowly slipping into madness

False allegations from MI5 put my clients in Guantánamo Bay and the British government has failed them abysmally.,,1985727,00.html

From Information Clearing House

Number of Guantanamo Bay hunger strikers double

The number of Guantanamo Bay detainees participating in a hunger strike has more than doubled since a month ago to 11, including five who are being force-fed, the US military said.

From Information Clearing House

Man granted U.S. residency after decades-long battle over El Salvador death squad allegations

A man denied citizenship because of charges that he tortured and murdered people as part of a death squad in Latin America has been granted permanent residence in the United States.

From Information Clearing House

US names state-owned Iranian bank as weapons proliferator

The US Treasury Department listed the Iranian state-owned Bank "Sepah" as a proliferator of weapons of mass destruction, and said a ban on all transactions between the bank and US businesses is in effect.

From Information Clearing House

U.S. cautions China over reported multibillion dollar gas deal with Iran

The United States has urged China to reconsider a reported multibillion dollar (euro) natural gas deal with Iran amid international efforts to sanction Tehran for its nuclear programs, a U.S. Embassy spokeswoman said Tuesday.

From Information Clearing House

UN makes $60m Iraq refugee appeal

One in eight of Iraqis have now left their homes, with up to 50,000 people leaving each month, the UNHCR said.

From Information Clearing House

Oliver North says Bush plan 'eerily like Vietnam escalation'

Oliver North doesn't support the President's plan to for 20,000 additional ground troops in Iraq. 0'Reilly quips that North is aligning himself with Nancy Pelosi.

Most say no to Iraq buildup

Those surveyed oppose the idea of increased troop levels by 61%-36%. Approval of the job Bush is doing in Iraq has sunk to 26%, a record low.

From Information Clearing House


Ollie North, voice of reason on Iraq

Mother Jones
by Jonathan Stein


Ollie North said on Fox News yesterday that in a recent trip to Iraq, 'not one' service member he interviewed said that the solution in Iraq is more American boots on the ground, and that 'nearly all' suggested 'just the opposite.' See video at Think Progress. An American public already doubting President Bush's plan to send 20,000 more troops to Iraq -- 3/4ths disapprove of the President's decision making, and half say we've lost regardless of how many troops we send -- has reason to doubt it further...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

Troop surge could affect Guard

Top U.S. military officials have concluded that such a buildup would require them to reverse Pentagon policy and send the Army's National Guard and reserve units on lengthy second tours in Iraq, defense officials said Monday.

From Information Clearing House

U.S. Targeted Assassination in Somalia, Many Civilians Reported Killed

Audio Interview with Salim Lone

Reports have also emerged that suggest U.S. Special Forces and CIA paramilitary teams are now directly embedded with Ethiopian forces in Somalia. Earlier this year, the CIA was accused of backing a group of Somali warlords.

More Than 50 Killed By U.S. Gunships In Somalia

The boom of rocket-propelled grenade fire echoed through Mogadishu city center and touched off a two-minute gunfight. Hot spent shells clinked in the streets as residents ran for cover. At least one person was hurt, Mogadishu hospital officials said.

US Somali air attack kills at least 27

"My four-year-old boy was killed in the strike," Mohamed Mahmud Burale told the BBC from the area. Local MP Abdulkadir Haji Mohamoud Dhagane told the BBC that 27 people, mostly civilians, had been killed near Afmadow.

Salim Lone: Destabilizing The Horn

Clan warlords, who terrorized Somalia until they were driven out by the Islamists, and who were put back in power by the U.S.-backed and -trained Ethiopian army, have begun carving up the country once again.

From Information Clearing House


Somalia: US continues aerial incursions



Attack helicopters strafed suspected al-Qaida fighters in southern Somalia on Tuesday, witnesses said, following two days of airstrikes by U.S. forces -- the first U.S. offensives in the African country since 18 American soldiers were killed here in 1993. In Washington, a U.S. intelligence official said American forces killed five to 10 people in an attack on one target in southern Somalia believed to be associated with al-Qaida...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp


New US Strikes Hit Sites in Somalia: Government Source

US forces hit four locations in new air strikes in Somalia on Wednesday as criticism mounted over Washington's military intervention.


Neocons are backing the same warlords that slaughtered US troops in 1993

Privatisierung und Gegenkämpfe: Public-Private- Partnership

Zauberformel PPP

„Im Kontext der Ausgliederung und Privatisierung öffentlicher Dienstleistungen geistern bereits seit einiger Zeit die Begriffe »Öffentlich-Private-Partnerschaften« (ÖPP) oder neudeutsch »Public-private-Partnership« (PPP) durch die Öffentlichkeit. Der folgende Beitrag gibt am Beispiel des staatlichen Hochbaus, genauer: des Schulbaus, einen kurzen Einblick in dieses Thema…“ Artikel von Uli Maaz über Privatisierung durch Partnerschaft im Bildungsbereich

Aus: LabourNet, 10. Januar 2007


Privatisierung und Gegenkämpfe > Public-Private-Partnership

Forfaitierung mit Einredeverzicht. Wie der Staat bei "Public Private Partnership" (PPP) heimlich alle Risiken übernimmt und sich zusätzlich verschuldet

Artikel von Werner Rügemer in Freitag vom 7.9.07

Fallstricke für Kommunen bei PPP. Werner Rügemer: »Forfaitierung mit Einredeverzicht« birgt auf Jahrzehnte hin große Risiken

„In Mülheim an der Ruhr wird am Sonntag über ein Bürgerbegehren gegen Öffentlich-Private Partnerschaften (ÖPP) abgestimmt. ÖPP-Projekte stellen entgegen der Darstellung mancher Kommunalpolitiker auch für die öffentlichen Haushalte ein hohes Risiko dar, sagt Wolfgang Rügemer, Dozent an der Uni Köln und Vorsitzender von Business Crime Control, einer Organisation gegen Wirtschaftsverbrechen. Mit ihm sprach Rolf-Henning Hintze…“ Interview im ND vom 08.09.07

Privatisierung und Widerstand allgemein > Bürgerentscheid gegen Privatisierung in Mülheim

Bürgerentscheid gescheitert. Den Privatisierungsgegnern fehlten 2768 Ja-Stimmen. SPD-Chef Esser fordert größere Transparenz bei PPP-Projekten.

„Glück gehabt. Beim gestrigen Bürgerentscheid zur Privatisierung kamen Stadtverwaltung und das Parteienbündnis aus SPD, CDU und FDP mit zwei blauen Augen davon. Der Entscheid scheiterte nicht daran, dass mehr Privatisierungsbefürworter als -kritiker zur Wahlurne schritten, sondern am verfehlten Quorum. Damit ein Bürgerentscheid gültig wird, müssen mindestens 20 Prozent der Wahlberechtigten mit Ja stimmen, das wären 27 065 Stimmen: Diese Messlatte verfehlte die Initiative "Mülheim bleibt unser" um 2,05 Prozent bzw. um 2768 Stimmen. Abgegeben wurden 33 014 Stimmen. Die Wahlbeteiligung lag somit bei 24,40 Prozent. Für Privatisierung und somit mit Nein stimmten 8652 Wahlberechtigte, das sind lediglich 8,65 Prozent. Für die SPD sind die Befürworter eine "schweigende Mehrheit"…“ So berichtet wahrhaft neutrale Presse, hier in Form der NRZ online vom 10. September 2007 – im Moment aber die einzige Meldung…

»Verschuldung wird zementiert«. Bürgerentscheid in Mülheim zu Verbot von Privatisierungen.

Interview von Rolf-Henning Hintze mit Lothar Reinhard, Fraktionsvorsitzender der Mülheimer Bürger-Initiativen (MBI) im Stadtrat der Ruhrgebietsstadt, in junge Welt vom 08.09.2007

Aus: LabourNet, 10. September 2007


Privatisierung: Kostenfalle für das Gemeinwesen?

„Privat Public Partnership' (PPP) - das englische Schlagwort bedeutet nichts anderes als eine Partnerschaft zwischen privaten und öffentlichen Trägern. Gemeint sind damit also Kooperationen zwischen dem Staat - meist Kommunen, Landkreisen oder Gemeinden - und privaten Investoren. In der Praxis funktioniert das meist so: Der private Träger übernimmt beispielsweise Dienstleistungen oder auch Gebäude-Sanierungen, die eine Gemeinde oder Kommune früher selbst erledigt hat. Dafür bezahlt der Staat den Investor. Die öffentlichen Hände hoffen, dadurch Geld zu sparen. Weil die Summen, die sie an den Investor zahlen, geringer sind als die Kosten, die sie aufbringen müssten, um den Auftrag selbst zu erledigen. So weit die Idee. Doch sparen die Kooperationen wirklich Kosten? Und wenn nicht: Wer hat das Nachsehen? Plusminus hat sich mehrere PPPs genauer angeschaut und nachgehakt…“ Video zur Plusminus-Sendung (SR, 14. Oktober 2008 im Ersten)

Aus: LabourNet, 16. Oktober 2008

U.S. v. 1LT Ehren K. Watada Trial

U.S. v. 1LT Ehren K. Watada Pre-Trial Hearing January 4, 2007


Watada hearing - testimony worth listening to

This testimony is from the heaing regarding LT WATADA. His trial is on 2/ 5/ 2007. please visit

Darrell Anderson (purple heart, '04) and Chanan Suarez-Diaz (listen to what he is saying.)

Dennis Kyne

Thanks to Ryan Tompkins, many thanks.

Listen to the song that is telling the same story. here
Ain't Going Back Again - Peace Machine #28

Dennis Kyne
Support the Truth

Antiwar Movement Launches National Surge of Opposition to War Escalation

100+ Groups Call on Congress to Oppose High-Level Radioactive Waste Dumping Plan in Ohio

When the Weatherman Plays Dumb

The Headless Horseman of the Apocalypse

How the World Will See the Surge

Ominous Signs of a Wider War

Jane Bright: Letter From the Heart

It’s Time for an American Surge To Stop the Bush War in Iraq

Latin American Elites More Doubtful of US

How Richest Fuel Global Warming but Poorest Suffer Most from It

US Somali Air Strikes 'Kill Many'


They never learn
by Justin Raimondo


The series of blunders and willful miscalculations that led to our present predicament in Iraq are now being replicated in Somalia, where a rather large U.S. footprint is being stamped into the hard Somali soil. Well, it isn't a footprint, quite yet, but rather a series of bomb craters, where the lives of 'many' civilians, according to news reports, have been summarily ended. U.S. bombing raids, ostensibly aimed at al-Qaeda fighters supposedly hidden among native Islamic militias, have succeeded in killing scores, albeit none of the three dudes we are allegedly after. ... Oh well, it's just another day in Washington's 'war on terrorism'...

Informant: Thomas L. Knapp

On Guantanamo Prison Camp's Fifth Birthday, New Pressure to Shut It Down

Bruce Springsteen: "Bring 'em Home"


US steps up economic war against Iran

Informant: jensenmk

From ufpj-news

Bush Surge Aimed at Securing Iraqi Oil

If Bush Talks And Nobody Listens, Does He Make a Sound?

Damning the disabled: on the minimum wage


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