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Paul E Ester

Profile Information

Member since: Tue Jan 13, 2009, 12:46 PM
Number of posts: 952

About Me

When I clicked this thread, I said to myself, \"I wonder who said the inevitable stupid thing.- You did not disappoint.\" - WilliamPitt Hmmm. Interesting…nt - SidDithers What the hell is going on here, anyway? -Hekate This is one of the most hilarious threads I have read on DU… - defacto7 \"That has got to be the stupidest thing I have ever read on DU.\" - AsahinaKimi

Journal Archives

Starbucks CEO to opponents of same sex marriage if you don't like it "sell your shares of Starbucks"

The CEO of Starbucks defended his support of same-sex marriage at the company’s annual meeting in Seattle. Starbucks came out in favor last year of Washington’s referendum legalizing same-sex marriage. Opponents of that measure vowed to make Starbuck’s pay, and the National Organization for Marriage launched a boycott of Starbucks.

At the company’s annual meeting Wednesday, shareholder Tom Strobhar suggested that the boycott had indeed bled the company of value.

“In the first fill quarter after this boycott was announced, our sales and our earrings — shall we say politely — were a bit disappointing,” he said
.

CEO Howard Schultz shot back that the decision to back gay marriage was not about the bottom line, but about respecting diversity. He said the company had delivered a healthy return last year, boycott or no.

“If you feel, respectfully, that you can get a higher return than the 38 percent you got last year, it’s a free country. You can sell your shares of Starbucks and buy shares in another company. Thank you very much,” he said, to loud applause from the audience.



http://kplu.org/post/schultz-defends-starbucks-support-same-sex-marriage
Audio at the link.

Apple Says Data Centers Now Use 100% Renewable Energy


In its environmental update, Apple said a 100-acre solar farm next to its largest data center, in Maiden, North Carolina, became fully operational in December.
Apple Inc. (AAPL) now uses only renewable energy sources to power its data centers, the iPhone maker said in an updated report on its environmental policies.

The company’s data centers now run on energy sources such as solar, wind and geothermal, instead of coal or other fossil fuels, Apple said on its website. The centers house server computers that store and distribute songs, applications and other content from services such as iTunes, iMessage and iCloud.

A year ago, Apple was targeted by Greenpeace International, which ranked Apple 12th out of 14 large technology companies in a report called “How Clean Is Your Cloud?” The environmental group, which held protests at Apple’s offices in Cupertino, California, charged Apple with relying on electricity from coal plants and gave Apple a grade of no better than D in the four categories it tracked.
In its environmental update, Apple said a 100-acre solar farm next to its largest data center, in Maiden, North Carolina, became fully operational in December. With the solar array and a large installation of fuel cells, which convert biogases into energy, Apple said it met a goal of generating 60 percent of the energy for the data center on-site.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-03-21/apple-says-data-centers-now-use-100-renewable-energy.html

Terrorist Designations of Ansar al-Dine

The Department of State has designated Ansar al-Dine (AAD) as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist entity under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. As a result of the designation, U.S. persons are prohibited from knowingly providing material support or resources to AAD, and all property subject to U.S. jurisdiction in which AAD has any interest is blocked and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with the organization or to its benefit.

AAD has also been listed by the United Nations 1267/1989 al-Qa’ida Sanctions Committee. The UN listing requires all member states to implement an assets freeze, a travel ban, and an arms embargo against AAD. The UN action demonstrates international resolve to eliminate AAD’s violent activities in Mali and the surrounding region.

Ansar al-Dine is an organization operating in Mali which cooperates closely with al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), a designated Foreign Terrorist Organization. AAD was created in late 2011 after AAD’s leader, Iyad ag Ghali, failed in an attempt to take over a secular Tuareg organization due to his extremist views. Ghali was designated by the Department of State under E.O. 13224 on February 26, 2013.

AAD has received support from AQIM since its inception in late 2011, and continues to maintain close ties to the group. AAD has received backing from AQIM in its fight against Malian and French forces, most notably in the capture of the Malian towns of Agulhok, Tessalit, Kidal, Gao, and Timbuktu, between January and April 2012. In AAD’s March 2012 attack against the town of Aguelhok, the group executed 82 Malian soldiers and kidnapped 30 more. Before the French intervention in January 2013, Malian citizens in towns under AAD’s control who did not comply with AAD’s laws faced harassment, torture, or execution.

http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2013/03/206493.htm

Washington cops working to ‘desensitize’ drug dogs to marijuana smell

Police in Washington state are working to retrain their drug-sniffing dogs so that they’re less likely to alert when they smell marijuana.

The retraining is part of the state’s law enforcement reforms following November’s voter-backed legalization measure, which will ultimately require police to notify judges as to whether a drug dog used to obtain probable cause for a search has been trained to comply with state law.

“Moving forward, it makes most sense not to train dogs to alert to marijuana as that would likely lead to unwarranted investigatory detentions of people who are not breaking any law,” Alison Holcomb, drug policy director for the American Civil Liberties Union, told KOMO News on Wednesday.


http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/03/21/washington-cops-working-to-desensitize-drug-dogs-to-marijuana-smell/

Marine with concealed carry permit stops man from beating woman

A Wisconsin Marine Corps veteran used a concealed weapon to stop a man on the street from nearly kicking his ex-girlfriend to death on Tuesday.

Charlie Blackmore was driving home from work at 4:00 am when he spotted the woman on the ground being kicked in the head and stomach by her much larger ex-boyfriend.

The Marine veteran said he jumped out of his car and ran over to shake off the suspect

‘I said “stop” and he starts coming towards me and that’s when I drew on him. He started getting closer and I said “get down on the ground,”’ Blackmore told Fox 6 in Milwaukee, noting that Wisconsin’s concealed carry law allowed him to do so.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2294546/Marine-concealed-carry-permit-stops-man-beating-woman.html

Indiana Pastor Gets 12 Years For Sexual Relationship With Teen Parishioner (video of assault)


he former pastor of a northwest Indiana megachurch on Wednesday was sentenced to 12 years in prison for having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old parishioner.

Last summer, Schaap, 55, was fired from First Baptist Church of Hammond, the 40,000-member congregation of which he had led for 11 years. Upon his firing, Schaap admitted that he had a sexual relationship with the young member of his church.

In court Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Rudy Lozano told Schaap the sex crimes were serious in that they were "dealing with the treasures that are most important to us - our children," the Northwest Indiana Times reports.

The 12-year prison sentence for Schaap was two years longer than the sentence recommended by prosecutors, according to Reuters, and also includes five years of supervised release.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/20/jack-schaap-sentenced-ind_n_2918139.html
Ok not the assault just one of many.

The Dalai Lama, a sordid history of Nazi Mentors and forgiving Fascists

Forgive Pinochet, says Dalai Lama

and

Dalai Lama’s Nazi Friends

As depressing as it may be for the Nobel peace prize winner’s followers, there has been continuous contact between the Dalai Lama and the far right wing and former national socialists (Nazis). His close friendship with his German mentor, Heinrich Harrer has become the most well-known of these. It caused a small scandal in 1997-1998 when, after years of research, the Austrian journalist, Gerald Lehner, succeeded in making public Harrer’s “brown-shirt” (i.e., German fascist) past, which the latter had been able to keep secret for many years. Harrer is not just anybody. He is one of the best-known international authors and has sold over four million books in 57 languages (mostly about Tibet and the Fourteenth Dalai Lama).


http://zenbuddhism.tribe.net/thread/4597a19e-c253-4589-acf7-9f8a98965c2d

President Obama - I’m confident in declaring that our alliance is eternal, it is forever


President Peres, Prime Minister Netanyahu, and most of all, to the people of Israel, thank you for this incredibly warm welcome. This is my third visit to Israel so let me just say tov lihiyot shuv ba'aretz. (Applause.)

I’m so honored to be here as you prepare to celebrate the 65th anniversary of a free and independent State of Israel. Yet I know that in stepping foot on this land, I walk with you on the historic homeland of the Jewish people.

More than 3,000 years ago, the Jewish people lived here, tended the land here, prayed to God here. And after centuries of exile and persecution, unparalleled in the history of man, the founding of the Jewish State of Israel was a rebirth, a redemption unlike any in history.

Today, the sons of Abraham and the daughters of Sarah are fulfilling the dream of the ages -- to be “masters of their own fate” in “their own sovereign state.” And just as we have for these past 65 years, the United States is proud to stand with you as your strongest ally and your greatest friend.

As I begin my second term as President, Israel is the first stop on my first foreign trip. This is no accident. Across this region the winds of change bring both promise and peril. So I see this visit as an opportunity to reaffirm the unbreakable bonds between our nations, to restate America’s unwavering commitment to Israel’s security, and to speak directly to the people of Israel and to your neighbors.

I want to begin right now, by answering a question that is sometimes asked about our relationship -- why? Why does the United States stand so strongly, so firmly with the State of Israel? And the answer is simple. We stand together because we share a common story -- patriots determined “to be a free people in our land,” pioneers who forged a nation, heroes who sacrificed to preserve our freedom, and immigrants from every corner of the world who renew constantly our diverse societies.

We stand together because we are democracies. For as noisy and messy as it may be, we know that democracy is the greatest form of government ever devised by man.

We stand together because it makes us more prosperous. Our trade and investment create jobs for both our peoples. Our partnerships in science and medicine and health bring us closer to new cures, harness new energy and have helped transform us into high-tech hubs of our global economy.

We stand together because we share a commitment to helping our fellow human beings around the world. When the earth shakes and the floods come, our doctors and rescuers reach out to help. When people are suffering, from Africa to Asia, we partner to fight disease and overcome hunger.

And we stand together because peace must come to the Holy Land. For even as we are clear-eyed about the difficulty, we will never lose sight of the vision of an Israel at peace with its neighbors.

So as I begin this visit, let me say as clearly as I can --the United States of America stands with the State of Israel because it is in our fundamental national security interest to stand with Israel. It makes us both stronger. It makes us both more prosperous. And it makes the world a better place. (Applause.)

That’s why the United States was the very first nation to recognize the State of Israel 65 years ago. That’s why the Star of David and the Stars and Stripes fly together today. And that is why I’m confident in declaring that our alliance is eternal, it is forever – lanetzach.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/03/19/remarks-president-obama-arrival-ceremony

Israel to dig up tree given by Obama..


Ynet is reporting that by order of the Agriculture Ministry, the magnolia tree brought from the US by the president and planted by Obama and Peres earlier this afternoon is being dug up. Really.

Plants cannot be brought in from abroad “without undergoing a check” by the ministry, the report quotes the bureaucrats as saying. If this were April 1, we’d assume this was a wind-up.


http://www.timesofisrael.com/obama-set-to-meet-with-peres-in-jerusalem/
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/20/obama-gift-israel-dug-up

Wishing President Obama continued luck on his trip.

Grocery chains announce refusal to sell engineered salmon - Frankenfish


A size comparison of an AquAdvantageAE Salmon (background) vs. a non-transgenic Atlantic salmon sibling (foreground) of the same age. (AquaBounty Technologies)

A genetically engineered salmon nearing approval by the Food and Drug Administration, after waiting 17 years, will not reach some store shelves.

A coalition of environmental and consumer groups announced Wednesday that they have secured promises from several U.S. grocery chains that they will not carry the fish. These include Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Aldi, and PCC Natural Markets in Washington state. Most of the biggest supermarket chains are not participating.

Having lost the battle last November over California’s Prop. 37 initiative to require labeling of genetically engineered foods, activists are applying pressure now via retailers. It’s not such a tough sell, as genetically engineered food polls very poorly with the public and Prop. 37 was defeated only after food companies spent millions to bury it.


http://blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2013/03/19/grocery-chains-announce-refusal-to-sell-engineered-salmon/
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