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Member since: Tue Nov 9, 2004, 11:55 PM
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Journal Archives

Fallout evacuees to sue for damages

Source: JIJI

Residents forced to flee from fallout ejected by the Fukushima No. 1 power plant meltdowns plan to sue the government and plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co. in 14 district courts across the country, it was learned Sunday.

Similar suits filed by 1,278 evacuees are already pending at 11 district courts, lawyer Motomitsu Nakagawa said.

As the third anniversary of the disaster approaches, the central government is trying to dismiss the suits, claiming the blackout-induced meltdowns at the aging and poorly protected power plant were unforeseeable.


Read more: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/03/02/national/fallout-evacuees-to-sue-for-damages/

Astronaut Leroy Chiao Opens Up About His 2005 UFO Sighting

Source: Huffington Post

In 2005, astronaut Leroy Chiao was commander of the International Space Station for six and a half months. During a spacewalk with cosmonaut Salizhan Sharipov, the two were installing navigation antennas. They were 230 miles above Earth, traveling at over 17,000 miles per hour, when something unusual caught Chiao's eye.

"I saw some lights that seemed to be in a line and it was almost like an upside-down check mark, and I saw them fly by and thought it was awfully strange," Chiao told The Huffington Post.

Chiao's fellow spacewalker, Sharipov, hadn't seen the lights because he was facing the opposite direction.

This experience, recreated in the above video (and still image below), launches "NASA's Unexplained Files," one of several programs presented as part of Science Channel's week-long "Are We Alone?" series, beginning March 2.


Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/02/nasa-unexplained-files-are-we-alone-science-channel_n_4880334.html

Rachel Maddow: A nuclear weapons strategy that’s stuck in the past


A nuclear weapons strategy that’s stuck in the past

By Rachel Maddow, Published: February 28


How is it, though, that we’re cutting all those things yet keeping the full complement of 1970s-era nuclear missiles in silos in Wyoming, North Dakota and Montana?

Like the drunk general said, those intercontinental missiles are an operationally deployed nuclear force. They’re not in silos for storage; they are ready to fly. But do we really believe the general’s drunken boast that those hair-trigger missiles are saving the world from war every day? Even if there is a scenario in which a threat to the United States is best handled by us firing off hundreds of nuclear weapons, B-2 bombers and Trident submarines could handily launch such weapons at any attacker on the planet who is kind enough to provide us with a return address. As Vladi­mir Putin considers his options in Crimea, do we really think he feels his decisions are constrained by our nuclear weapons . . . but not the ones on U.S. military planes or submarines, only the ones underground in Montana?


Although no one has had to prevent an accidental missile launch by parking an armored vehicle on top of the silo doors since the 1980s (true story), we’re just not doing a great job handling the responsibility of those Minuteman 3s. And we’re not so much failing as succumbing to inevitability: In the absence of any realistic mission in which those missiles would be used, maintaining morale and 100 percent error-free rigor over decades is an almost existentially impossible challenge.

The real failure here is political: Civilian decision-makers need to make the call about the overall U.S. security strategy and the prioritization of military spending. At a time of cuts and reorganization, when hard decisions must be made about what to save and what to let go, continuing to throw billions of dollars down those silos is a failure of accountability and a failure to be realistic about what kind of wars we might conceivably fight in the future.

Initial reporting on the Pentagon’s proposed cuts described the goal of “a military capable of defeating any adversary, but too small for protracted foreign occupations.” After years of Iraq and Afghanistan, we don’t want protracted foreign occupations anymore, so we’re planning for a military future without them. Unless someone wants or expects an exchange of hundreds of nuclear-tipped land-based intercontinental missiles with Russia in our future, it is nonsense for us to keep planning for that, decade after decade, at such high cost and with so much risk.

Over 30% of 3/11 kids hit by PTSD

Source: JIJI, Kyodo

More than 30 percent of children caught up in the March 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami that heavily damaged Tohoku’s coastline are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, a health ministry survey says.

The survey covered 198 children in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures aged 3 to 5 at the time of the disasters, which ravaged all three. They were interviewed by psychiatrists from September 2012 to June 2013.

“Those children grew up to be able to express their fears of the disaster or their grief at losing friends,” said Takeo Fujiwara, a researcher at the National Center for Child Health and Development.

According to the survey, 33.8 percent of the children exhibited PTSD symptoms, including sleeping disorders and flashbacks. That was much higher than the 3.7 percent logged for children from the Kansai prefecture of Mie, who were surveyed for comparison.


Read more: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/03/02/national/over-30-of-311-kids-hit-by-ptsd/

Abe's Cabinet to pursue revision of 10 laws in collective defense push

Source: Kyodo

The government plans to ask the Diet for approval this fall to revise more than 10 laws to enable Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense, a government source said.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Cabinet plans to focus on amending existing legislation, rather than attempting to draft new overarching laws spelling out the basic principles of the major change he is seeking in national security policy, the source said Saturday.

Abe is expected to make a final decision on whether to lift the self-imposed ban on collective self-defense before the Diet closes for the summer on June 22.


But as part of his drive to alter the nation’s defensive posture, Abe has said Cabinet approval alone will be enough to change the government’s current interpretation of the pacifist Constitution, raising concern across party lines that he is making light of Diet debate.


Read more: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/03/02/national/abes-cabinet-to-pursue-revision-of-10-laws-in-collective-defense-push/

Hundreds rally in Japan against dropped Fukushima crisis charges

Source: Voice of Russia

Hundreds rallied Saturday in Tokyo to protest a decision by prosecutors to drop charges over the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns, meaning no one has been indicted, let alone punished, nearly three years after a calamity ruled “man-made.”


“There are many victims of the accident, but no one” has been charged, chief rally organiser Ruiko Muto, 61, told the protesters, displaying a photo of the village of Kawauchi, which fell inside the no-go zone designated by the government around the stricken power plant.

“We are determined to keep telling our experiences as victims to pursue the truth of the disaster, and we want to avoid a repeat in the future,” she said.


Some 15,000 people whose homes or farms were doused with radioactive materials from the crippled No. 1 plant filed a criminal complaint in 2012 against central government and Tepco officials. However, prosecutors last September decided not to charge any of them with negligence.


Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_03_02/Hundreds-rally-in-Japan-against-dropped-Fukushima-crisis-charges-9248/

Low Vitamin D Slows Serotonin Production, May Impact Autism


Low Vitamin D Slows Serotonin Production, May Impact Autism
By Rick Nauert PhD Senior News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on February 27, 2014

A new study demonstrates the way in which Vitamin D may influence social behavior associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Rhonda Patrick, Ph.D., and Bruce Ames, Ph.D., of Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute (CHORI) showed that serotonin, oxytocin, and vasopressin, three brain hormones that affect social behavior, are all activated by the vitamin D hormone.

Autism, which is characterized by abnormal social behavior, has previously been linked to low levels of serotonin in the brain and to low vitamin D levels, but no mechanism has linked the two until now.


According to researchers, the proposed pathway explains many of the known, but previously not understood, facts about autism including:

- the “serotonin anomaly” low levels of serotonin in the brain and high levels in the blood of autistic children;

- the preponderance of male over female autistic children: estrogen, a similar steroid hormone, can also boost the brain levels of serotonin in girls;

- the presence of autoimmune antibodies to the fetal brain in the mothers of autistic children: vitamin D regulates the production of regulatory T-cells via repression of TPH1.


The most recent National Health and Examination survey reports that greater than 70 percent of U.S. population does not meet this requirement and that adequate vitamin D levels have plummeted over the last couple of decades.


The study suggests dietary intervention with vitamin D, tryptophan, and omega 3 fatty acids would boost brain serotonin concentrations and help prevent and possibly ameliorate some of the symptoms associated with ASD without side effects.


Researchers believe vitamin D levels should be routinely measured in everyone and should become a standard procedure in prenatal care.

Church is out on the street in Gangjeong Jeju

Published on Feb 18, 2014

The Catholic Church in Gangjeong on Jeju Island is a street church.

The daily life & peace Mass is served everyday from 11 am to noon. Even in rainy days or stormy days, in deep snow or under the scorching sun, the Mass continues with priests, nuns, peace defenders, villagers and citizens from all over Korea.

While the construction for a massive naval base is going on, and the naval base has been tearing apart the once peaceful community of Gangjeong village, we don't give up fighting and praying everyday for peace and social justice.

The police interrupt the life & peace Gangjeong Mass by forcefully moving the people sideways. People of Gangjeong desparately waiting for Pope Francis to come to Jeju Island during his visit to South Korea in August 2014.

"I prefer a church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security."
- Pope Francis

recorded at the scene by Joyakgol, Feb 17, 2014.

Oliver Stone visited last August:

Friday, August 02, 2013


He is without a doubt the biggest name to yet arrive on Jeju Island to support the non-violent struggle against the Navy base.

I am particularly moved by his gesture to visit the prison to meet Professor Yang who was a leading film critic in Korea and has surely seen many of Stone's films over the years. I can only imagine what this visit will do to lift Yang's spirits. You can watch my all-time favorite Jeju video where Yang is interviewed on Gureombi rock before the Navy began blasting the sacred coast. See it here

Oliver Stone graciously agreed to be interviewed for Regis Tremblay's new documentary film called The Ghosts of Jeju. He is using his celebrity to help people's movements all over the world which speaks well of him.


Apple's Tim Cook picks a fight with climate change deniers

Source: CNN

Tells shareholders who oppose Apple's sustainability efforts to "get out of the stock."

Of the roomful of investors and journalists who heard Apple CEO Tim Cook lose his southern cool during the Q&A portion of the company's annual stockholders meeting Friday, The Mac Observer's Brian Chaffin tells it best:


Mr. Cook didn't directly answer that question, but instead focused on the second question: the NCPPR representative asked Mr. Cook to commit right then and there to doing only those things that were profitable.

What ensued was the only time I can recall seeing Tim Cook angry, and he categorically rejected the worldview behind the NCPPR's advocacy. He said that there are many things Apple does because they are right and just, and that a return on investment (ROI) was not the primary consideration on such issues.

"When we work on making our devices accessible by the blind," he said, "I don't consider the bloody ROI." He said that the same thing about environmental issues, worker safety, and other areas where Apple is a leader.

As evidenced by the use of "bloody" in his response—the closest thing to public profanity I've ever seen from Mr. Cook–it was clear that he was quite angry. His body language changed, his face contracted, and he spoke in rapid fire sentences compared to the usual metered and controlled way he speaks.

He didn't stop there, however, as he looked directly at the NCPPR representative and said, "If you want me to do things only for ROI reasons, you should get out of this stock."


Read more: http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2014/03/01/apple-cook-shareholders-sustainability/

Jeju Protest Update: Episode #5 The Spirit of Gangjeong

Via http://space4peace.blogspot.com/2014/03/jeju-protest-update.html

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