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What Is Isn’t But Is
- Congo Government Allegedly Shuts Off Internet Service to Squash Protests
The government of the Republic of the Congo has apparently cut access to the main internet service provider in the midst of widespread protests, according to an internet monitoring firm.
Congo Telecom, or Congotel, the incumbent fixed line provider, went completely dark on Tuesday, according to Dyn, a company that monitors global internet connectivity.
The outage comes as the government reportedly ordered a crackdown on protests in the capital of Brazzaville. People were protesting against a referendum that would allow the current president to be eligible for a new term. According to news reports, the government cut all communications ahead of the protests.
Doug Madory, a researcher at Dyn, told Motherboard that the country is not completely offline, since some providers that rely on satellites are still working, according to Dyn’s data. Airtel Congo, another ISP, also went offline on Monday, Madory said.
The outage, Madory added, is likely affecting a large swath of the population given that Congo Telecom “likely [has] the biggest market share in terms of customers” in the country.
- GCHQ handed new smartphone-hacking legal powers
Spy agencies in Britain will be given the explicit right to hack into smartphones and computers as part of a new law being introduced by the Conservative government.
Security services MI5, MI6 and GCHQ can already access electronic devices by exploiting software security vulnerabilities, but the legal foundation for the practice is under scrutiny.
New powers laid out in the Investigatory Powers Bill, due to be introduced in Parliament next month, will give spies a solid legal basis for hacking into computer systems, according to the Times.
The revelation has sparked criticism from human rights group Liberty, which accuses the government of giving spy agencies “unlimited potential” to act against citizens.
The bill, which was announced in the Queens’ Speech following the general election, is likely to include the new Snooper’s Charter, according to privacy campaigners at the Open Rights Group.
- Icelandic Bankers Are Not Too Big To Jail: Face 74 Years In Prison As US Bankers Bask In Bailouts
As TheAntiMedia’s Claire Bernish exclaims, you could ice skate in Hell sooner than see the United States follow in Iceland’s footsteps with this move: the 26th banker was just sentenced to prison for a combined 74 years between them — each of them jailed for their roles in the 2008 economic collapse.
Five top bankers from Iceland’s two largest banks — Landsbankinn and Kaupþing — were found guilty of embezzlement, market manipulation, and breach of fiduciary duties. Though the country’s maximum penalty for financial crimes currently stands at six years, the Supreme Court is currently hearing arguments to extend the limit. Most of those convicted have so far been sentenced to between two and five years.
- Israel must withdraw all settlers or face ICC, says UN report
Israel must withdraw all settlers from the West Bank or potentially face a case at the international criminal court (ICC) for serious violations of international law, says a report by a United Nations agency that was immediately dismissed in Jerusalem as “counterproductive and unfortunate”.
All settlement activity in occupied territory must cease “without preconditions” and Israel “must immediately initiate a process of withdrawal of all settlers”, said the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC). Israel, it said, was in violation of article 49 of the fourth Geneva convention, which forbids the transfer of civilian populations to occupied territory.
The settlements were “leading to a creeping annexation that prevents the establishment of a contiguous and viable Palestinian state and undermines the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination,” it said.
The UNHRC report broadly restated international consensus on the illegality of Israeli settlements. But its conclusions are likely to bolster the Palestinians following their admission last November to the UN as a non-member state, which potentially gives them recourse to the ICC.
- New FBI Report Debunks Mythical “War on Police”
Throughout the United States, Americans believe there is a “war on police.” A recent survey found 58% of Americans agree with this sentiment. A new, privately-funded billboard campaign hijacks the “Black Lives Matter” moniker to read “Blue Lives Matter,” highlighting powerful pushback from law enforcement sympathizers against activists.
The FBI’s 2014 report, Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted (LEOKA), released this week, appears to support the notion that police officers are in danger and unduly targeted. The number of officers killed by individuals committing “felonious acts” jumped from 27 in 2013 to 51 last year, and police apologists are all but guaranteed to point to this increase as proof their concerns are justified. A deeper examination of the data, however, reveals that police are not only safe, but still running rampant in their liberal use of violence against the citizens they allegedly serve.
- Bombshell Ruling — Feds Have to Keep their Dirty Hands Off Legal Medical Pot Shops
In a landmark decision on this week, a federal court found that the federal government has no standing to block the legal operation of medical cannabis dispensaries, provided they comply with state laws.
The decision was a direct result of a congressional act last December, in which Congress cut off federal funding for the prosecution of cannabis clubs, provided they were operating within current state law.
The landmark decision came in the case of Lynette Shaw, who ironically opened the first licensed medical marijuana dispensary in the United States. Her dispensary was ultimately raided and shut down by the DEA in 2011.
Shaw has been in court over 100 times fighting the legality of the closure since her dispensary was shuttered, according to NBC. The decision by U.S. Judge Charles Breyer ended the long-running battle she has been engaged in with the federal government.
Judge Breyer ruled that the congressional decision to cut off funding for the prosecution of medical cannabis clubs took precedence over the Department of Justice, thus meaning that a federal injunction in place against Shaw and her dispensary had no legal standing.
- Climate Science Turned Monster
Promoters of ‘official’ climate, which is defined as the works of the UN IPCC, are desperate. Twenty of them, including Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) members like Kevin Trenberth, asked the Obama administration to file Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) charges against climate deniers. All but two of the twenty are at Universities, and the two are career bureaucrats associated with the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR). They all live off the public purse, but somehow in the weird world of climate science that is untainted money. The RICO charge is ad hominem, not about the science. If Virtually all the research funding for global warming comes from government and goes to those supporting the unproven hypothesis. There is no comparison between the amounts of government money going to the ‘official’ side of the science and that going to skeptics.
Their RICO charge is so ridiculous it hardly warrants a response, but it does require scientific perspective. It is important to note that none of the authors of the academic peer reviewed papers and books, they claim provide the evidence for their charge, signed the letter. It is likely that most, if not all of them or their institutes, receive funding from a government beyond their academic or government salaries.
The RICO charge is a particularly nasty form of ad hominem attack. By applying it in the global warming case, it tries to make criminals out of people doing their job properly. The real criminal part of their enterprise is that skeptics are doing what scientists are supposed to do, that is disproving the AGW hypothesis. They accuse these properly named scientific skeptics of performing the scientific method, either through ignorance of the method or to silence them. The twenty, like the IPCC and its supporters, directly or indirectly thwart the scientific method by accepting the hypothesis as proven. They then deflect or ignore overwhelming evidence that the hypothesis is wrong including failed predictions (projections). They consistently refuse to consider the null hypothesis.
The attack is not surprising because the IPCC created a monster and were driven to keep it alive. Once you create the monster it becomes uncontrollable and even if it becomes a threat to society, the creator will resist its destruction; worse, you have to keep feeding the monster and will take extreme measures if necessary. This inevitability is the moral message of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.
- Miranda Devine: Perth electrical engineer’s discovery will change climate change debate
A MATHEMATICAL discovery by Perth-based electrical engineer Dr David Evans may change everything about the climate debate, on the eve of the UN climate change conference in Paris next month.
A former climate modeller for the Government’s Australian Greenhouse Office, with six degrees in applied mathematics, Dr Evans has unpacked the architecture of the basic climate model which underpins all climate science.
He has found that, while the underlying physics of the model is correct, it had been applied incorrectly.
He has fixed two errors and the new corrected model finds the climate’s sensitivity to carbon dioxide (CO2) is much lower than was thought.
It turns out the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has over-estimated future global warming by as much as 10 times, he says.
“Yes, CO2 has an effect, but it’s about a fifth or tenth of what the IPCC says it is. CO2 is not driving the climate; it caused less than 20 per cent of the global warming in the last few decades”.
Dr Evans says his discovery “ought to change the world”.
“But the political obstacles are massive,” he said.
His discovery explains why none of the climate models used by the IPCC reflect the evidence of recorded temperatures. The models have failed to predict the pause in global warming which has been going on for 18 years and counting.
“The model architecture was wrong,” he says. “Carbon dioxide causes only minor warming. The climate is largely driven by factors outside our control.”
- Ice sheets may be more resilient than thought, say Stanford scientists
Sea level rise poses one of the biggest threats to human systems in a globally warming world, potentially causing trillions of dollars’ worth of damages to flooded cities around the world. As surface temperatures rise, ice sheets are melting at record rates and sea levels are rising.
But there may be some good news amid the worry. Sea levels may not rise as high as assumed.
To predict sea level changes, scientists look to Earth’s distant past, when climate conditions were similar to today, and investigate how the planet’s ice sheets responded then to warmer temperatures brought on by increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
In a recently published study in the journal Geology, PhD students Matthew Winnick and Jeremy Caves at Stanford School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences explored these very old conditions and found that sea level might not have risen as much as previously thought – and thus may not rise as fast as predicted now.
- This is why media coverage of climate debate has been corrupted
News journalists are being bribed by the United Nations and the Oxfam charity to write scare stories about climate change ahead of the global climate treaty negotiations in Paris later this year.
Details of the bribes – which take the form of ego-boosting “awards”, global travel in CO2 generating airliners and financial payments – are contained in a news release just published by the UNDP today, an organisation headed by former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark.
Journalists’ codes of ethics prohibit being induced to give favourable coverage, but those rules have increasingly been ignored in recent years by the use of backdoor mechanisms like funding journalism “awards” as a means of generating content and rewarding propaganda-writers.
New Zealand’s major media, like the TV3 network, have frequently covered climate stories in the Pacific with the financial “assistance” of lobby groups like Oxfam and Greenpeace.
The full text of the news release follows:
- The Worst Nuclear Disaster in US History That You’ve Never Heard About
The United States government deliberately hid “the worst nuclear disaster in U.S. history,” according to some experts and an in-depth investigation by NBC4 Southern California. Whistleblowers have also come forward to expose the little-known catastrophe, which occurred north of Los Angeles in 1959 and leaked over 300 times the allowable amount of radiation into surrounding neighborhoods. That contamination may now linked to up to a 60% increase in certain cancers in the area, but the government still refuses to acknowledge its colossal mistake.
The ongoing tragedy was driven by America’s darkest demons, from dogmatic militarism to aggressive corporatism, and ongoing government and corporate efforts to cover-up the disaster are nothing short of staggering.
In 1947 — two years after the United States dropped nuclear bombs on Japan — the North American Aviation corporation opened a 2,800 acre nuclear test site in Ventura County, just miles from the San Fernando and Simi Valleys — two adjacent valleys located north and northwest of the city of Los Angeles. North American Aviation amassed power during World War II, when it produced more aircraft than any other company and flexed its muscles as an early and powerful player in America’s emerging military-industrial complex. One of its expansions came in the form of building the Santa Susana Field Lab (SSFL), where researchers would perform top-secret nuclear tests involving rocket engineering, missiles, and nuclear energy and power.
- Court refuses to block Obama climate rule
A federal appeals court declined requests Wednesday to block the Obama administration’s landmark climate rule for power plants.
In a short, two-paragraph order filed just after 5 p.m., the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that West Virginia, more than a dozen other states and a coal-mining company do not qualify for a judicial stay that would stop the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from implementing the regulation until the litigation is complete.
The three-judge panel ordered that the petitions be denied “because petitioners have not satisfied the stringent standards that apply to petitions for extraordinary writs that seek to stay agency action.It’s the first major loss for the conservative states since President Obama announced the final version of the regulation in early August. It seeks a 32 percent slash in the power sector’s carbon emissions by 2030.
The ruling means the states will have to wait until the EPA publishes the final rule in the Federal Register, which it plans to do by the end of October, to file a lawsuit against it and ask for a judicial stay.
- Federal appeals court boots challenge to EPA emissions rules
A federal appeals court dismissed a lawsuit on Tuesday challenging the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to set limits on carbon-dioxide emissions.
The three-judge U.S. Court of Appeals panel in Washington, D.C., ruled that the petition for review brought by Murray Energy Corp., Peabody Energy Corp., and attorneys general in 12 states including Kentucky was premature because the EPA has only proposed a rule on greenhouse gas emissions.
”They want us to do something that they candidly acknowledge we have never done before: review the legality of a proposed rule,” U.S. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh wrote in the opinion. “But a proposed rule is just a proposal.
“In justiciable cases, this Court has authority to review the legality of final agency rules. We do not have authority to review proposed agency rules. In short, we deny the petitions for review and the petition for a writ of prohibition because the complained-of agency action is not final.”
- State of West Virginia, et al. v. EPA, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, No. 15-1277
- Emergency Petition for Extraordinary Relief by State of West Virginia, et al (8-13-2015)
- Emergency Motion for Consolidation and Expedited Treatment by State of West Virginia, et al. (8-13-2015)
- Order denying emergency motion to consolidate (8-19-2015)
- Order requiring EPA to respond to Emergency Petition in 7 days (8-24-15)
- NGO Motion and Response in Opposition to Emergency Petition (8-31-2015)
- EPA’s Response in Opposition to Emergency Petition (8-31-2015)
- Reply by State of West Virginia, et al (9-4-2015)
- Order denying extraordinary petition (9-9-2015)
- EPA to Start Labeling Monsanto’s Roundup as Being Carcinogenic
The EPA’s office of environmental health hazard assessment in California issued a ‘notice of intent’ to label Monsanto’s famous weed herbicide Roundup to have Glyphosate which can cause cancer.
Following the WHO cancer research division’s report of ingredients known to cause cancer, EPA decided to officially put a key ingredient of the popular Monsanto’s Roundup on a list of chemicals hazardous to human health.
Under a classification of Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, any chemicals that threaten human life require a business to provide a “clear and reasonable” warning label before exposing individuals to a chemical on the list.
After the Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) In March classified glyphosate as being “probably” carcinogenic to humans, Monsanto launched a campaign to dispute that claim. Being the key component of one of their best selling products since 1974, agrochemical giant dismissed accusations arguing that there is no proof Glyphosate is linked to a cancer.
Glyphosate, is a broad-spectrum herbicide used to kill weeds, especially annual broadleaf weeds and grasses known to compete with commercial crops.
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- The people know that they have created this farce and financed it with their own taxes (consent), but they would rather knuckle under than be the hypocrite.Factor VI – Cattle
Those who will not use their brains are no better off than those who have no brains, and so this mindless school of jelly-fish, father, mother, son, and daughter, become useful beasts of burden or trainers of the same.
- Mr. Rothschild’s Energy Discovery
What Mr. Rothschild  had discovered was the basic principle of power, influence, and control over people as applied to economics. That principle is “when you assume the appearance of power, people soon give it to you.”
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