Conservative energy and climate change minister Matthew Hancock has taken £18,000 from a key backer of the UK’s leading climate sceptic lobby group, the Guardian can disclose.
According to official records, Hancock has accepted five donations over the years from City currency manager Neil Record, who has given money to the Global Warming Policy Foundation, and is on the board of its campaigning arm.
Asked whether Hancock had ever discussed energy policy with Record and declared the link to the Department for Energy and Climate Change, a spokeswoman for the minister said: “All donations are declared publicly and proper process followed.”
So there are proper procedures when you want to buy a UK politician…
While French authorities continued investigating how the TV5Monde network had 11 of its stations’ signals interrupted the night before, one of its staffers proved just how likely a basic password theft might have led to the incident.
In an interview with French news program 13 Heures, TV5Monde reporter David Delos unwittingly revealed at least one password for the station’s social media presence. That’s because he was filmed in front of a staffer’s desk—which was smothered in sticky notes and taped index cards that were covered in account usernames and passwords.
The researchers point out that Facebook’s “social plug-ins” — which other sites frequently use — tracked users who didn’t use the plug-ins, were not logged in to Facebook, and who did not even have a Facebook account. In its response post, Facebook conceded that “a bug” affected “a few” users and would be fixed.
The “bug” is that they got caught.
A bill introduced in the Texas House of Representatives would make it illegal for private citizens to record police within 25 feet.
House Bill 2918, introduced by state Rep. Jason Villalba (R-Dallas) on Tuesday, would make the offense a misdemeanor. Citizens who are armed would not be permitted to record police activity within 100 feet of an officer, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Only representatives of radio or TV organizations that hold an FCC license, newspapers and magazines would have the right to record police.
Between the time when he shot and killed Scott early Saturday morning and when charges were filed, Slager — using the both the police department and his attorney — was able to provide his “version” of the events. He appeared well on his way to avoiding charges and pinning the blame on Scott.
Agents on the 2,000 mile-U.S. border have wrestled with these smuggling techniques for decades, seemingly unable to stop the northward flow of drugs and southward flow of dollars and guns. But the amount of one drug — marijuana — seems to have finally fallen. U.S. Border Patrol has been seizing steadily smaller quantities of the drug, from 2.5 million pounds in 2011 to 1.9 million pounds in 2014. Mexico’s army has noted an even steeper decline, confiscating 664 tons of cannabis in 2014, a drop of 32% compared to year before.
This fall appears to have little to do with law enforcement, however, and all to do with the wave of U.S. marijuana legalization. The votes by Colorado and Washington State to legalize marijuana in 2012, followed by Alaska, Oregon and D.C. last year have created a budding industry. U.S. growers produce gourmet products with exotic names such as White Widow, Golden Goat and Oaktown Crippler as opposed to the bog-standard Mexican “mota.” American dispensaries even label their drugs, showing how strong they are, measured in THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, the main psychoactive ingredient), and grade their mix of sativa, which gets people stoned in a psychedelic way and indica, which has a more knock-out effect.
A new report by ThinkProgress.com unearthed disturbing figures when it came to the number of police-related deaths that occurred in America in the month of March alone.
Just last month, in the 31 days of March, police in the United States killed more people than the UK did in the entire 20th century. In fact, it was twice as many; police in the UK only killed 52 people during that 100 year period.
According to the report by ThinkProgess, in March alone, 111 people died during police encounters — 36 more than the previous month.
This high number in March increased the average for police killings from every 8.5 hours, to nearly 1 police killing every 6.5 hours in the US.
China, whose population is 4 and 1/2 times the size of the United States, recorded 12 killings by law enforcement officers in 2014.
On average, US police kill people at a rate 70 times higher than any of the other first world countries as they “protect and serve” the American citizens.
A white police officer in North Charleston, S.C., was charged with murder on Tuesday after a video surfaced showing him shooting in the back and killing an apparently unarmed black man while the man ran away.
The officer, Michael T. Slager, 33, said he had feared for his life because the man had taken his stun gun in a scuffle after a traffic stop on Saturday. A video, however, shows the officer firing eight times as the man, Walter L. Scott, 50, fled. The North Charleston mayor announced the state charges at a news conference Tuesday evening.
If House Bill 2258 is signed into law by Gov. Sam Brownback (R) this week, Kansas families receiving government assistance will no longer be able to use those funds to visit swimming pools, see movies, go gambling or get tattoos on the state’s dime.
Those are just a few of the restrictions contained within the measure that promises to tighten regulations on how poor families spend their government aid.
State Sen. Michael O’Donnell, a Wichita Republican who has advocated for the bill, said the legislation is designed to pressure those receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families to spend “more responsibly.”
If only movie tickets where the biggest problem poor people have… time and time again research shows that if you give poor people more responsibility, the vast majority of them will rise to the occasion. Perhaps we should look again at negative income tax…
and that was in 1968…
Unfortunately, that’s politically impossible today..
“If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.” -Lyndon B. Johnson
The salient fact of American politics is that there are fifty to seventy million voters each of who will volunteer to live, with his family, in a cardboard box under an overpass, and cook sparrows on an old curtain rod, if someone would only guarantee that the black, gay, Hispanic, liberal, whatever, in the next box over doesn’t even have a curtain rod, or a sparrow to put on it.
Vani Hari, AKA the Food Babe, has amassed a loyal following in her Food Babe Army. The recent subject of profiles and interviews in the New York Times, the New York Post and New York Magazine, Hari implores her soldiers to petition food companies to change their formulas. She’s also written a bestselling book telling you that you can change your life in 21 days by “breaking free of the hidden toxins in your life.” She and her army are out to change the world.
She’s also utterly full of shit.
Q&A with the pilot
I don’t know how these morons are checking this, but when I try their feedback link at the bottom of the page to tell them I get into an endless loop: “please sign in, ok thanks verify that this information on you is still correct, oh you think it is correct, fine, now please sign in….”
This could be an April Fools’ joke. But it isn’t.
In what can only be described as an ironic twist, the Indian Journal of Dermatology is retracting a paper that presents guidelines on plagiarism for…wait for it…
Over the years we have seen various illustrations of the educational importance of piracy in developing countries. When the e-book portal Library.nu was shut down, for instance, we were contacted by a United Nations worker in Kenya, who voiced his disappointment.
“I am very concerned about the recent injunction against library.nu. The site was particularly useful for people like me working in Nairobi, a city that has no more than four bookshops with nothing but bestsellers,” the UN worker informed TF at the time.
In an effort to determine how piracy affects literacy and the spread of knowledge, the African Governance and Development Institute conducted an in-depth study comparing piracy and human development data from 11 African countries.
The findings, presented in a paper titled “The Impact of Software Piracy on Inclusive Human Development: Evidence from Africa” show that “software piracy increases literacy”.
“Adoption of tight IPRs regimes may negatively affect human development by diminishing the literacy rate and restricting diffusion of knowledge,” the authors write.
The four ill-fated programs were all intended to address a key vulnerability in U.S. defenses: If an enemy launched decoys along with real missiles, U.S. radars could be fooled, causing rocket-interceptors to be fired at the wrong objects — and increasing the risk that actual warheads would slip through.
In addition to SBX, the programs were:
• The Airborne Laser, envisioned as a fleet of converted Boeing 747s that would fire laser beams to destroy enemy missiles soon after launch, before they could release decoys.
It turned out that the lasers could not be fired over sufficient distances, so the planes would have to fly within or near an enemy’s borders continuously. That would leave the 747s all but defenseless against antiaircraft missiles. The program was canceled in 2012, after a decade of testing.
The cost: $5.3 billion.
• The Kinetic Energy Interceptor, a rocket designed to be fired from land or sea to destroy enemy missiles during their early stage of flight. The interceptor was too long to fit on Navy ships, and on land, it would have to be positioned so close to its target that it would be vulnerable to attack. The program was killed in 2009, after six years of development.
The cost: $1.7 billion.
• The Multiple Kill Vehicle, a cluster of miniature interceptors that would destroy enemy missiles along with any decoys. In 2007 and 2008, the Missile Defense Agency trumpeted it as a “transformational program” and a cost-effective “force multiplier.” After four years of development, the agency’s contractors had not conducted a single test flight, and the program was shelved.
The cost: nearly $700 million.
These expensive flops stem in part from a climate of anxiety after Sept. 11, 2001, heightened by warnings from defense hawks that North Korea and Iran were close to developing long-range missiles capable of reaching the United States.
President George W. Bush, in 2002, ordered an urgent effort to field a homeland missile defense system within two years. In their rush to make that deadline, Missile Defense Agency officials latched onto exotic, unproven concepts without doing a rigorous analysis of their cost and feasibility.
Henry A. Obering III, a retired director of the Missile Defense Agency, said any unfulfilled expectations for SBX and the other projects were the fault of the Obama administration and Congress — for not doubling down with more spending.
Okay, I slept late, so I missed it guys… Did Jesus see his shadow this morning?
You may not have heard of Baotou, but the mines and factories here help to keep our modern lives ticking. It is one of the world’s biggest suppliers of “rare earth” minerals. These elements can be found in everything from magnets in wind turbines and electric car motors, to the electronic guts of smartphones and flatscreen TVs. In 2009 China produced 95% of the world’s supply of these elements, and it’s estimated that the Bayan Obo mines just north of Baotou contain 70% of the world’s reserves. But, as we would discover, at what cost?
Space is the place. Again.
And SoundCloud is now a place you can find sounds from the US government space agency, NASA. In addition to the requisite vocal clips (“Houston, we’ve had a problem” and “The Eagle has landed”), you get a lot more. There are rocket sounds, the chirps of satellites and equipment, lightning on Jupiter, interstellar plasma and radio emissions. And in one nod to humanity, and not just American humanity, there’s the Soviet satellite Sputnik (among many projects that are international in nature).
That’s one small dubstep for…nah, too easy.
“I think it’s important we have a sense of perspective,” Cotton said. “In Iran they hang you for the crime of being gay.”
The Department of Defense has spent $66 billion since 2002 rebuilding Afghanistan. But amazingly, it can’t account for $45 billion of that money. That’s billion with a B.
The auditing office in charge of overseeing the reconstruction of Afghanistan has asked the Pentagon for a full account of where those funds have been spent. Twice. But the Pentagon told the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) that doing so simply wasn’t feasible. They may as well have just returned the request with a ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.