At a time when many thought that news out of the Gulf of Mexico couldn’t get any worse, BP announced today that the oil in the Gulf needs to be changed every six months.
“The oil will need to be changed every six months or every 15,000 lies,” said the BP spokesman. “Whatever comes sooner.”
Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Britain in September is expected to leave taxpayers with a bill of more than £20m, as the amount set aside by the Government appears to fall far short of the true costs.
Officials have complained that the "open-ended" budget for the four-day visit is spiralling out of control, as experts reassess critical requirements, mainly security at the large-scale public events to be attended by the Pontiff. The emerging problems with a commitment that the coalition inherited leaves ministers facing the prospect of having to plough millions more into a one-off event while being forced to make savage cuts across public services.
The Catholic Church in the UK was forced to rethink key elements of the visit, such as policing costs and security considerations last month. It is believed that the church, which originally expected to pay some £7m towards the visit, has so far managed to raise less than £6m.
This week the food and nutrition pills industries are complaining. They like to make health claims about their products, which often turn out to be unsupported by the evidence. Regulating that mess would be tedious, the kind of project enjoyed by the EU. Enter Nutrition and Health Claims Regulation in 2006.
Since then member states have submitted thousands of health claims for manufacturers about cranberries, fish oil and every magical ingredient you can think of. This week it turned out that 900 have been examined so far, of which 80% have been rejected.
“The regulation is killing this industry and the job losses are already being felt,” Ioannis Misopoulos, the head of the International Probiotics Association, told the BBC. Even “established claims like cranberry for urinary tract health” are being rejected, say pill company PowerHealth, adding: “There will be no information on packs for the consumer to assess what the product is supposed to do.” SlimFast, that great British institution, may have to change its name, according to the same report. All complain that the bar for evidence is being set too high.
I decided to read some adjudications. These are available in full on the EU website.
We just witnessed justice on steroids. Ten Russian “spies”—even if we still don’t know what they were spying on or why—were brought to court, copped a plea, and were on their way out of the country by midnight.
The wheels of justice move quickly when governments want them to. Wam, bam, thank you ma’am.
When a crisis is looming—in foreign affairs or even potential embarrassment for a country in the spotlight, Courts jump to; cases are rapidly disposed of and the wrath of the law is felt with dispatch.
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center says it received 336,655 fraud complaints last year related to financial losses of $560 million, double the dollar amount reported the year before.”
Instead of “all deliberate speed” (to use a civil rights era phrase), there is no deliberate speed in going after this financial crime wave. Yes, the FBI rounded up low-level mortgage fraudsters but did not go after the firms that securitized the bogus mortgages or insured them.
Instead you get cases like this one reported by Business Insider,
“Robert Miller, a former lawyer for the SEC (and also a former money manager) deserves a prize for his performance in court the other day.
He just escaped a potential 20-year prison sentence by telling the judge that he used to be a “fearful, self-loathing suicidal alcoholic,” says the Wall Street Journal. He was just too drunk to realize that he was participating in a fraud.
Since the Deepwater Horizon well exploded April 20, BP has paid fewer than half of the claims filed in six states, including Mississippi.
The oil giant had received 103,013 claims as of Saturday and had paid 48,795 of them at a cost of nearly $163 million. Mississippi residents and businesses filed 11,535 claims, and 5,088 had been paid. In this state BP has paid out nearly $16 million.
The company says its intent is to pay all legitimate claims. However, BP officials said there are delays if the company has to wait for documentation from people and businesses filing claims. Once it has the right paperwork, it takes between five and eight days to get a check.
Kindra Arnesen is the wife of a Gulf fisherman and she’s been kicking butt on exposing BP abuses. In this latest news, she’s discovered that BP is claiming is that if fishermen choose not to take part in the oil spill cleanup, BP will consider that as potential income declined and deduct it from their claims.
Kindra has previously talked about the serious health problems manifesting in those who have taken part in the cleanup.
In other words, if you didn’t want to risk your health and expose yourself to their toxic waste, you’re going to suffer financially as a result. But doesn’t BP have a pretty sunflower logo?
Asteroid Lutetia has been revealed as a battered world of many craters. ESA’s Rosetta mission has returned the first close-up images of the asteroid showing it is most probably a primitive survivor from the violent birth of the Solar System.
The flyby was a spectacular success with Rosetta performing faultlessly. Closest approach took place at 18:10 CEST, at a distance of 3162 km.
The images show that Lutetia is heavily cratered, having suffered many impacts during its 4.5 billion years of existence. As Rosetta drew close, a giant bowl-shaped depression stretching across much of the asteroid rotated into view. The images confirm that Lutetia is an elongated body, with its longest side around 130km.
Nelson Mandela’s grandson says the former South African president has been put under "extreme pressure" by Fifa to attend Sunday’s World Cup final.
Mandla Mandela said the engagement would be "strenuous" for a man who turns 92 next week.
Nelson Mandela cancelled plans to attend the opening ceremony after his great-granddaughter died in a car crash the night before the tournament.
Fifa head Sepp Blatter has said it will be "wonderful" if Mr Mandela attends.