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Member since: Fri Nov 12, 2004, 08:39 AM
Number of posts: 45,783

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Matt Bors TOON: Chelsea Manning

Alternet Link: http://www.alternet.org/comics/matt-bors-chelsea-manning

Higher CO2 Harming All Marine Life From Corals and Clams to Fish (Researchers)

Source: Bloomberg

Higher CO2 Harms All Marine Life From Corals and Clams to Fish

By Alex Morales
August 25, 2013 1:00 PM EDT

Rising levels of carbon dioxide are harming all forms of marine life because the oceans are acidifying as they absorb the gas, German researchers found.

Mollusks, corals and a class of creatures called echinoderms that includes starfish and sea urchins are the worst affected by the uptake of CO2 by the seas, according to a study today in the journal Nature Climate Change by researchers at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Bremerhaven. The gas forms carbonic acid when it dissolves in the oceans, lowering their pH level.

Creatures that show negative effects from acidification include commercial species such as oysters and cod. Given the pace at which carbon-dioxide emissions are growing, human emissions threaten to trigger extinctions at a faster pace than die-outs millions of years ago, according to the researchers.

“There is a danger that we’re pushing things too fast and too hard toward an evolutionary crisis,” Hans-Otto Poertner, one of the authors, said in a phone interview. “In the past, these crises have taken much longer to develop.”

The research will be fed into the United Nations’ most detailed study into the science of climate change, which is being published in three parts and an overall summary by the end of 2014, and is designed to inform international climate treaty negotiations. Today’s study will be input for the second part of that report, by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, due to be published at the end of March. The first part is scheduled for publication on Sept. 27.

Read more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-08-25/higher-co2-harms-all-marine-life-from-corals-and-clams-to-fish.html

Research: Indiscriminate Surveillance Fosters Distrust, Conformity and Mediocrity


Indiscriminate surveillance fosters distrust, conformity and mediocrity: research

By Chris Chambers, The Guardian
Monday, August 26, 2013 7:27 EDT

Recent disclosures about the scope of government surveillance are staggering. We now know that the UK’s Tempora program records huge volumes of private communications, including – as standard – our emails, social networking activity, internet histories, and telephone calls. Much of this data is then shared with the US National Security Agency, which operates its own (formerly) clandestine surveillance operation. Similar programs are believed to operate in Russia, China, India, and throughout several European countries. While pundits have argued vigorously about the merits and drawbacks of such programs, the voice of science has remained relatively quiet. This is despite the fact that science, alone, can lay claim to a wealth of empirical evidence on the psychological effects of surveillance. Studying that evidence leads to a clear conclusion and a warning: indiscriminate intelligence-gathering presents a grave risk to our mental health, productivity, social cohesion, and ultimately our future.

Surveillance impairs mental health and performance

For more than 15 years we’ve known that surveillance leads to heightened levels of stress, fatigue and anxiety. In the workplace it also reduces performance and our sense of personal control. A government that engages in mass surveillance cannot claim to value the wellbeing or productivity of its citizens.

Surveillance promotes distrust between the public and the state

People will trust an authority to the extent that it is seen to behave in their interest and trust them in return. Research suggests that people tolerate limited surveillance provided they believe their security is being bought with someone else’s liberty. The moment it becomes clear that they are in fact trading their own liberty, the social contract is broken. Violating this trust changes the definition of “us” and “them” in a way that can be dangerous for a democratic authority – suddenly, most of the population stands in opposition to their own government.


TOM TOMORROW: Snowden & Manning On Parallel Earth!

Daily Kos Link: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/08/26/1233713/-Parallel-Earth

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Obama Receives 'Detailed Review of a Range of Potential Options' Regarding Syria

Source: Reuters

@BreakingNews: White House: Obama receives 'detailed review of a range of potential options' regarding Syria - @Reuters http://t.co/DfbrEoFA2r

Obama gets 'detailed review' of Syria options, speaks with UK's Cameron

Source: Reuters - Sat, 24 Aug 2013 09:26 PM

WASHINGTON, Aug 24 (Reuters) - President Barack Obama received a "detailed review of a range of potential options" from his top advisers on Saturday on how the United States and its allies could respond to an alleged chemical weapons attack by the Syrian government, the White House said.

Obama also spoke with British Prime Minister David Cameron about Syria and agreed to consult about "potential responses by the international community," the White House said.

The White House did not provide details about what options were under consideration, and gave no indication about Obama's timeline for making a decision on the issue. (Reporting by Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton; Editing by Peter Cooney)

Read more: http://www.trust.org/item/20130824212043-2ua4u

Snowden Suspected Of Covering Electronic Tracks

Source: Associated Press

@AP: AP: NSA having difficulty finding out what Snowden stole because officials suspect he covered digital trail: http://t.co/osdo4QJVBA -JM


— Aug. 24 3:30 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government's efforts to determine which highly classified materials leaker Edward Snowden took from the National Security Agency have been frustrated by Snowden's sophisticated efforts to cover his digital trail by deleting or bypassing electronic logs, government officials told The Associated Press. Such logs would have showed what information Snowden viewed or downloaded.

The government's forensic investigation is wrestling with Snowden's apparent ability to defeat safeguards established to monitor and deter people looking at information without proper permission, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss the sensitive developments publicly.

The disclosure undermines the Obama administration's assurances to Congress and the public that the NSA surveillance programs can't be abused because its spying systems are so aggressively monitored and audited for oversight purposes: If Snowden could defeat the NSA's own tripwires and internal burglar alarms, how many other employees or contractors could do the same?

In July, nearly two months after Snowden's earliest disclosures, NSA Director Keith Alexander declined to say whether he had a good idea of what Snowden had downloaded or how many NSA files Snowden had taken with him, noting an ongoing criminal investigation.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/snowden-suspected-covering-electronic-tracks

Pearl Jam 'Mind Your Manners' Video

Pearl Jam Unleash Explosive 'Mind Your Manners' Video

AUGUST 23, 2013 2:20 PM

Pearl Jam take the title of their October 15th album Lightning Bolt quite literally in their new video for "Mind Your Manners," the LP's first single. The chaotic clip, directed by Danny Clinch, features the band performing before a screen projecting all kind of disasters — lightning bolts, bombs, environmental crises. Some of the animated imagery recalls their 1998 "Do the Evolution" video, though "Mind Your Manners" alludes to tragedies like September 11th, global warming and Hurricane Sandy while Eddie Vedder expresses his frustrations, singing, "Tried my patience/Patience tried."

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/videos/pearl-jam-unleash-explosive-mind-your-manners-video-

Breaking: U.S. Soldier Who Massacred Afghan Villagers Sentenced to Life W/out Possibility of Parole

Source: Associated Press


— Aug. 23 2:19 PM ED

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. (AP) — A military jury has sentenced a U.S. soldier who massacred 16 Afghan civilians last year to life in prison without a chance of parole.

The decision came Friday in the case against Staff Sgt. Robert Bales who pleaded guilty in June in a deal to avoid the death penalty for one of the worst atrocities of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Bales took the witness stand Thursday and apologized for the pre-dawn attack in March 2012, describing it as an act of cowardice.

Bales, a father of two from Lake Tapps, Wash., was serving his fourth combat deployment when he left his outpost at Camp Belambay, in Kandahar province, in the middle of the night to attack two villages.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/us-soldier-apologizes-massacre-16-afghans

Transgender Woman Dies After Assault in NYC

Source: Associated Press

— Aug. 23 1:29 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Hate crimes task force detectives were investigating Friday the death of a transgender woman who was assaulted last week on a New York City street and later died.

The victim, 21-year-old Islan Nettles, died Thursday, five days after she was attacked. The medical examiner's office will determine a cause of death.

It was the latest in a spate of bias attacks this year in New York. Sixty-eight have been reported, from yelled slurs to the May killing of a 32-year-old gay man in Greenwich Village. Police stepped up patrols this summer in response.

- snip -

Nettles and a friend, another transgender woman, were out Saturday evening in Harlem when they ran into a group of men, and one pounced, punching Nettles in the face, police said. But a witness who spoke to authorities initially did not mention any anti-gay remarks, and the suspect, 20-year-old Paris Wilson, was arrested on an assault charge.

After the attack, Nettles was hospitalized, slipped into a coma and later died.

The witness eventually told detectives about the anti-gay remarks, and the hate crimes task force took over the investigation. Detectives are looking whether the suspect had propositioned Nettles. Upgraded charges are possible following the medical examiner's ruling, police said. It wasn't clear whether Wilson had an attorney and his number was not listed.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/transgender-woman-dies-after-assault-nyc

Breaking: Army psychiatrist convicted of murder for Fort Hood shooting, now eligible for death

Source: Associated Press

@AP: BREAKING: Army psychiatrist convicted of murder for Fort Hood shooting, now eligible for death penalty. -SS


— Aug. 23 1:44 PM EDT

FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) — Army Maj. Nidal Hasan was convicted Friday in the 2009 shooting rampage at Fort Hood, a shocking assault against American troops at home by one of their own who said he opened fire on fellow soldiers to protect Muslim insurgents abroad.

The Army psychiatrist acknowledged carrying out the attack in a crowded waiting room where unarmed troops were making final preparations to deploy to Afghanistan and Iraq. Thirteen people were killed and more than 30 wounded.

Because Hasan never denied his actions, the court-martial was always less about a conviction than it was about ensuring he received the death penalty. From the beginning of the case, the federal government has sought to execute Hasan, believing that any sentence short of a lethal injection would deprive the military and the families of the dead of the justice they have sought for nearly four years.

A jury of 13 high-ranking military officers reached a unanimous guilty verdict in about seven hours. Hasan had no visible reaction as the verdict was read. In the next phase of the trial, they must all agree to give Hasan the death penalty before he can be sent to the military's death row, which has just five other prisoners. If they do not agree, the 42-year-old could spend the rest of his life in prison.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/jury-fort-hood-rampage-resume-deliberations
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