After government testing showed that scores of consumer products carrying the Energy Star label did not deserve the listing, a wave of class-action lawsuits was filed against the companies that manufacture the products.
Now, at least one major manufacturer wants Congress to ban the lawsuits and is threatening to withdraw from Energy Star, an Environmental Protection Agency program, unless it gets its way.
“By eliminating consumers’ access to the civil justice system, corporations will not be held accountable in court for swindling customers,” said Sarah Jones, a spokeswoman for the trial lawyers’ organization, the American Association for Justice.
Malaysia Airlines re-routed a Kuala Lumpur-to-London flight over Syrian airspace on Sunday after its usual route over Ukraine was closed, flight tracking data showed on Monday.
Flightradar24 posted a flight map on its Twitter account on Monday showing the change in the flight’s route.
In 1991 Steve Jobs’ company commissioned an head-to-head programming competition to show how much faster and easier it was to program a NeXT computer vs a Sun workstation. The NeXT operating system went on to be the foundation for Apple’s Macintosh OS-X about a decade later.
This week the Australian government announced what seems to be an extraordinary piece of legislation.
Spies who leak sensitive information will face tough new penalties of up to 10 years’ jail and internet firms could be forced to store customers’ data for up to two years under sweeping national security reforms…
To appreciate the impact of policies designed to curtail the dissemination of disclosures, it is useful to actually go to the evidence. A few months ago, Alex Marthews and Catherine Tucker provided that evidence in this paper…
One thing is more certain, this adjustment is suggesting that moves like this one for the Australian government may be actually upsetting more citizens than they think and that might well add up in terms of votes. I’m sure that will be of interest to politicians who think supporting this legislation is innocuous.
For twenty years, the belief that the sex provision was a monkey wrench that unintentionally became part of the machine was the conventional wisdom about Title VII. But when scholars—including Michael Gold, Carl Brauer, Cynthia Deitch, Jo Freeman, and Robert Bird—dug into the archives they not only learned that the real story of the sex amendment was quite different; they essentially uncovered an alternative history of women’s rights.
Rich people vote their self-interest in every single election. Why don’t poor people?
It was bad enough that the alleged rape took place in the sanctity of a mosque, and that the accused man was a mullah who invoked the familiar defense that it had been consensual sex.
But the victim was only 10 years old. And there was more: The authorities said her family members openly planned to carry out an “honor killing” in the case — against the young girl. The mullah offered to marry his victim instead.
This past week, the awful matter became even worse. On Tuesday, local policemen removed the girl from the shelter that had given her refuge and returned her to her family, despite complaints from women’s activists that she was likely to be killed.
Sara Hellwege, a pro-life nurse, applied for a job at Tampa Family Health Centers (in Florida) this past April. TFHC is a Title X clinic, meaning they’re all about things like family planning, contraception, and birth control.
So when Hellwege mentioned her affiliation with the “American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists” in her resume, the interviewer (Chad Lindsey) asked her if that would be a problem since, you know, conservative Christians + birth control = crazytown.
Hellwege said she couldn’t prescribe birth control since, in her unscientific mind, it caused abortions. Lindsey, knowing that all of the job openings involved prescribing birth control, told her there were no other positions available and that there was no reason to proceed with the interview process.
So she’s suing him.
I repeat: She’s suing him because he’s not hiring her for a job she refuses to do.
Russian separatists have been doing things at the crash site that without respect, inhumane, and without precedent. I’m appalled. I have no words.
This picture is one that has accompanied many stories about this.
And although I have no kind words for the separatists right now, it must be said this is unfair. Here‘s what really happened when that picture was taken.
U.S. communications increasingly travel across U.S. borders — or are stored beyond them. For example, the Google and Yahoo e-mail systems rely on networks of “mirror” servers located throughout the world. An e-mail from New York to New Jersey is likely to wind up on servers in Brazil, Japan and Britain. The same is true for most purely domestic communications.
Executive Order 12333 contains nothing to prevent the NSA from collecting and storing all such communications — content as well as metadata — provided that such collection occurs outside the United States in the course of a lawful foreign intelligence investigation. No warrant or court approval is required, and such collection never need be reported to Congress. None of the reforms that Obama announced earlier this year will affect such collection.
A child was excluded from a school trip celebrating 100 per cent attendance because she’d missed one day – to go to her mum’s funeral.
Little Maddie Stevens, 11, was left confused and angry after staff at St Giles’ Junior School in Bedworth refused to let her go to Frankie & Benny’s restaurant with her friends on Tuesday.
Maddie’s mum Gail died of breast cancer in January this year, after a two-year battle with the disease.
The grieving youngster’s dad Andy, a finance manager, said: “It’s just so insensitive after everything she has been through.
“Maddie has been absolutely amazing since her mum died. She took only one day off to go the funeral, because we wanted to keep things as normal for her as we could. But even if she’d taken a week off I’d be saying this.
“She got very upset when Gail passed away and at the funeral, but she’s just tried to get on with things.
When the Telegraph contacted St Giles’ Junior School, a spokesperson said: “Following concerns raised, the rewarding of pupils for 100 per cent attendance has been withdrawn.”
Let unsaid in that response “and that’s her fault!”. Bunch of insensitive idiots.
American blues guitarist and singer Johnny Winter died Wednesday in a hotel room in Switzerland, his representative said Thursday. He was 70.
“His wife, family and bandmates are all saddened by the loss of their loved one and one of the world’s finest guitarists,” his spokeswoman, Lori Haynes, said.
Winter was in Zurich, Switzerland, as part of a tour of Europe, although he was scheduled to return to the United States for shows later in July, according to his official Facebook page.
Winter first gained national attention when Rolling Stone magazine featured the the Texas music scene in a December 1968 cover story. It captioned his photo: “Johnny Winter, Albino Bluesman.” The article said guitarist Mike Bloomfield considered the young Winter the “best white blues guitarist he had ever heard.”
Rolling Stone now ranks Winter 63rd on its list of 100 greatest guitarists.
A Pittsburgh pastor who wrote a not-quite-bestselling book about his successful struggle to become a former gay has been arrested for …..
There are two contexts in which this story can be analyzed: 1) the futility of trying to use the courts to attack or quash negative reviews and 2) European courts’ increasingly bold attempts to blunt the impact of or censor specific search results that are perceived to cause harm (whether or not the information at issue is truthful or factual).
On the first point the restaurant has gained much more unwanted attention for itself through the action and subsequent coverage. I wouldn’t be surprised now if it went out of business. However, the food and service appear to be mediocre; so perhaps it’s inevitable anyway.
On the second matter, I’m sure the BBC coverage fails to elucidate some of the nuances of the case but the judge’s actions and decision appear to me to be pretty outrageous. I could perhaps understand the decision if the review were totally defamatory and not supported by the weight of opinion from other sources. But it seems very consistent with other reviews.
The only “crime” here, then, was ranking too high in search results.
The United Nations’ leading health agency, the World Health Organization, has called on countries around the world to end the criminalisation of people who use drugs. The call was made in a report published this month that looked at policy responses for dealing with HIV among key populations – men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, people in prisons and other closed settings, sex workers and transgender people. The WHO’s unambiguous recommendation is clearly grounded in concerns for public health and human rights. Whilst the call is made in the context of the policy response to HIV specifically, it clearly has broader ramifications, specifically including drug use other than injecting.
In the report, the WHO says:
- “Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize injection and other use of drugs and, thereby, reduce incarceration.
- Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize the use of clean needles and syringes (and that permit NSPs[needle and syringe programs]) and that legalize OST [opiate substitution treatment] for people who are opioid-dependent.
- Countries should ban compulsory treatment for people who use and/or inject drugs ”
The report also highlights Portugal’s success in decriminalising personal drug possession and treating drug use as a health, rather than a criminal justice, issue.
The 175th Wing, Maryland Air National Guard, located at Warfield Air National Guard Base, Baltimore, Maryland, intends to issue a Request for Proposal (RFP) to award a single firm fixed-price contract for Construction of a CYBER/ISR Facility. Project to be LEEDR Silver Certified. Construction services will consist of the construction of a new CYBER/ISR Facility. The purpose of this facility is to house a Network Warfare Group and ISR Squadron. The Cyber mission includes a set of capabilities, expertise to enable the cyber operational need for an always-on, net-speed awareness and integrated operational response with global reach. It enables operators to drive upstream in pursuit of cyber adversaries, and is informed 24/7 by intelligence and all-source information
Let’s get real, how many guardsmen speak Farsi, Chinese, Russian, Swahili or Hindi?
How many know anything about NZ, Australia, GB or Canada worth knowing in a cyber context.
So who does that leave for adversaries?
Right. You and me.
Председатель Верховного совета самопровозглашенной Донецкой народной республики Денис Пушилин отправлен в отставку по собственному желанию. Об этом сообщает «Интерфакс» со ссылкой на Владимира Маковича, вице-спикера парламента ДНР.
По словам Маковича, Пушилин в настоящее время находится в Москве.
«Он прислал на мое имя письмо с просьбой об уходе с занимаемой должности по собственному желанию. На сессии совета этот вопрос был поставлен на голосование. Депутаты поддержали отставку Пушилина», — рассказал Макович.
Rats off a sinking ship.
As a veteran of the aerospace industry, I’m very familiar with layoff notices. During the almost-decade I spent working for Boeing, I survived probably a dozen major reductions in force, and they all had two things in common: a plainly stated promise of an open and transparent process and a hilariously terrible lack of actual transparency.
Well, congratulations to Satya Nadella and the Microsoft HR and communications teams, because you’re stealing from the best—or maybe you all took the same course in corporate doubletalk and truthiness as part of your MBA programs. Microsoft this morning announced far and away the largest round of layoffs in its history, and Nadella’s e-mail drips with that familiar mixture of faux sympathy and non-information that is so typical of carefully managed corporate communication.
There’s a name for this kind of uninformative spin-talk: it’s known as “ducking and fucking.”
This, sadly, is not a Microsoft-specific issue; it’s standard all across not just the tech industry but essentially every large American company.
The first sentence of any story sets the tone—and look at the robo-sentence the Microsoft layoff notification e-mail starts off with:
Last week in my email to you I synthesized our strategic direction as a productivity and platform company.
Leading off with a sentence like this immediately creates distance between the reader and the speaker—the kind of distance necessary to dehumanize both parties so that the big blow to come hurts less. The corporate-speak continues with creaky euphemism after creaky euphemism, including using the phrase “workforce realignment” instead of simply saying “staff reduction” or “layoff.” People and corporations both use euphemisms to cloak unpleasantness; however, it’s much more honest and personal to simply speak the unadorned truth when dealing with people’s livelihoods. “We’re going to realign our work force” might sound a lot better than “we’re firing 18,000 people,” but the latter more properly informs employees that jobs are going to be lost and lives are going to be affected.
“synthesizing a strategic direction”, right? If you were up until that minute the person responsible for corporate strategic direction, that is the very last thing you care about. Because it has instantly become completely irrelevant to you. Forever. So, yeah, great way to start.
and don’t get me started on how you talk about Microsoft’s strategy is focused on productivity and our desire to help people “do more” and then listing XBox as an example.
On a flight back to New York I read Level 3’s assessment of the latest round of the Netflix vs Internet Provider debacle.
The summarized version is that basically Netflix is slow because Verizon refuses to add capacity to peer with Level 3. Fixing the situation would cost Verizon on the order of a few thousand (that’s right thousand) dollars. Level 3 is even willing to foot the bill. But Verizon refuses.
Ukraine’s intelligence agency, the State Security Service, known as the SBU, just released what it said was audio from intercepted phone calls between separatist rebels and Russian military intelligence officers on Thursday, in which they appeared to acknowledge shooting down a civilian plane.
LOVEINT: On his first day of work, NSA employee spied on ex-girlfriend
New letter from NSA oversight to senator details 12 instances of obvious abuse.
Edward Snowden has revealed that he witnessed “numerous instances” of National Security Agency (NSA) employees passing around nude photos that were intercepted “in the course of their daily work.”
Makes you wonder how many of those pictures were for underage girls… but then again, if those teens don’t want the NSA looking at their nude photos they just shouldn’t have become terrorists, right?
About 100 of the 298 people killed in the Malaysia Airlines crash were heading to Melbourne for a major AIDS conference, conference attendees have been told.
Delegates at a pre-conference in Sydney were told on Friday morning that about 100 medical researchers, health workers and activists were on the plane that went down near the Russia-Ukraine border, including former International AIDS Society president Joep Lange.
Want a glimpse of how companies can shift their profits among countries in a way that reduces their tax liabilities? Here’s the dreaded “Double Irish Dutch Sandwich”…
Best of all, it’s surprisingly legal and affordable and, as long as you have oodles of money, you have the motive, means and opportunity.