Saturday, March 04, 2006
Man acquitted in case of alleged rape captured on video
Saturday March 04, 2006
CHICAGO (AP) A man accused of taking part in a videotaped rape of a teenager has been acquitted, a spokeswoman for the state's attorney's office said.
Adrian Missbrenner, 20, was cleared Friday by Cook County jurors of sexual assault and child pornography charges.
Missbrenner was one of four men charged in the assault of a woman who is now 20. The video, made in 2002, reportedly shows two men having sex with her and a third writing obscenities on her legs and thighs with a felt-tipped marker.
Missbrenner surrendered to U.S. authorities in Serbia last May after disappearing for eight months.
``It's been a long struggle. But we're happy to have our son back,'' his father, Damir, told reporters outside the courtroom...........................
but remember this, he DID testify in part:
Rape trial: 'Girl was passing out'
March 3, 2006
BY DAN ROZEK Staff Reporter
In his first statement to investigators, Adrian Missbrenner said he had consensual sex with a 16-year-old Naperville girl, but acknowledged she was so drunk she began "passing out'' during the December 2002 encounter, a Cook County prosecutor testified Thursday............
becuase of the holyland cross flyin' across the country like dorothy o' kansas dominos pizza posting on this very blog and the blog of the lovely and talented rex kramer, danger seeker over to the spurious george blog i am going to tell ALL of you how to make pizza dough so you don't have to eat the fast food shite out there and as a bonus i'll include a little secret as well. plus it's a GOOD family project
3 c flour-i like to use UNBLEACHED WHITE (if you use whole wheat, make sure you use at least one c of white flour too and you may need a tad more water)
1 c water
1/2 t salt
2 T olive oil plus more for oiling your pizza pan
1 t sugar or honey or maple syrup or sweetner of your choice (may be omitted but it does help the yeast proof)
1 to 2 T yeast (or 1 pack of yeast. NOT nutritional yeast by the way)
to 1/2 cup of the WARM water (it can't be boiling or the yeast will die and it can't be too cold or the yeast won't grow) add the yeast and the sweetner. after about five minutes stir in 1 or 2 T of the flour
meanwhile toss flour into a large bowl along with the salt (if you want to add herbs like rosemary or dill or whatever you like you may do so now. it does end up tasting SO GOOD)
after the yeast/flour mixture has grown toss that into your flour bowl along with the other 1/2 c of water. add the oil. mix with your HANDS until it forms a ball. on floured surface slap that dough around for awhile (at the VERY least three minutes). clean the mixing bowl (doesn't have to be thorough. just use a paper towel). rub a bit more olive oil in the bowl and place dough in it. cover with a damp towel or plastic wrap and put aside in a warmish place for about an hour. after an hour punch down and form into the pizza pie shape of your choice. it CAN be a rectangle you know it doesn't have to be square (if you don't have a pizza stone, OIL the pan you're using for the dough). i let mine rise again for about 1/2 hour before topping it, but you don't have to. you can top it and let it rise OR you can top it and bake it right away. this dough will make one large pizza or two smaller ones.
SECRET: if you make a bigger batch, you can separate the dough into single pizza servings toss in an oiled plastic bag and freeze it for use later. let defrost in the oiled bag then shape and either let rise and top or just top it after you shape it.
you can bake it at 400 or 450 for anywhere between 8 minutes and 15 depending upon the thickness of your dough, your oven, your toppings. it's up to YOU to make sure it doesn't burn.
oh and this basic recipe makes a damn good loaf of bread too.
Friday, March 03, 2006
New Florida town would restrict abortion
Domino's founder building community around Catholic university
NAPLES, Florida (AP) -- If Domino's Pizza founder Thomas S. Monaghan has his way, a new town being built in Florida will be governed according to strict Roman Catholic principles, with no place to get an abortion, pornography or birth control.
The pizza magnate is bankrolling the project with at least $250 million and calls it "God's will."
Civil libertarians say the plan is unconstitutional and are threatening to sue.
The town of Ave Maria is being constructed around Ave Maria University, the first Catholic university to be built in the United States in about 40 years. Both are set to open next year about 25 miles east of Naples in southwestern Florida.
The town and the university, developed in partnership with the Barron Collier Co., an agricultural and real estate business, will be set on 5,000 acres with a European-inspired town center, a massive church and what planners call the largest crucifix in the nation, at nearly 65 feet tall. Monaghan envisions 11,000 homes and 20,000 residents.....
(and i wonder instead of building the LARGEST crucifix in the nation, why not donate that money to some catholic orphanage or educational program or catholic soup kitchen (there's a damn fine one in hartford - mercy shelter)
and by the way, if it seems like i am PROMOTING abortion - i am NOT. it is MY right as a woman in the united states to have one or not. it's also ALL OF MY SISTER'S RIGHTS
go check it out at the lovely and talented neil shakespeare's joint
western shoshone nation vs the government
the shoshones want 'fair' resolution in court. FAIR? FAIR? c'mon that AIN'T gonna happen
'Western Shoshone said they are denied fair resolution in U.S. courts. '
Western Shoshone urge probe of human rights violations
C Indian Country Today January 27, 2006. All Rights Reserved http://www.indiancountry.com/
ELKO, Nev. - While the United States fails to respond to the United Nations inquiry into violations of human rights of Western Shoshone, supporters have surpassed an original goal of 10,000 signatures to maintain pressure on the government to answer for the harassment of Shoshone people.
''We've got a fight on our hands,'' Western Shoshone Carrie Dann told Indian Country Today, encouraging the United Nations to increase pressure on the United States to uphold the rights of indigenous peoples.
''This is supposed to be democracy?'' Dann asked and described the United States' manipulation of laws that affect American Indians.
''What is democracy? Is democracy destroying the rights of the indigenous people? We don't see any democracy where indigenous people are concerned.''
The United States missed a year-end deadline to answer questions from the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination concerning violations of Western Shoshone human rights and their right to ancestral lands.
The committee issued a list of 10 questions the government failed to answer by Dec. 31. The questions follow a request for urgent action, which, if accepted, would allow the committee to open an investigation into U.S. conduct regarding land issues and the treatment of indigenous people.
Julie Ann Fishel, land recognition program director for the Western Shoshone Defense Project, said Western Shoshone elders see pressure from the United Nations as the only solution; the petition reveals the support of the people.
''It tells the United States the Western Shoshone are not going away,'' Fishel told ICT. ''We will seek out every opportunity and forum to press this issue.''
Fishel said Western Shoshone rights are a fundamental human rights issue that affects all of civil society in the United States. Further, Western Shoshone hope pressure from the United Nations will increase awareness of indigenous rights as a mainstream issue.
Dann and Fishel were interviewed by telephone in Miami, where they are participating in the Seventh Tribal Sovereignty Symposium, ''Sovereignty and Sustainable Development of Indigenous Peoples.''
Siegfried Wiessner, professor of international law and constitutional law at the St. Thomas University School of Law in Miami, said the recognition of indigenous rights worldwide has made tremendous progress.
''There has been a remarkable resurgence of indigenous rights,'' Wiessner told ICT.
Indigenous rights of self-governance, recognition of autonomy and the execution of treaties are progressing worldwide. Indigenous peoples are transcending borders and coming together as never before to communicate, and the mass media is helping advance indigenous rights, he said.
''Indigenous people are coming together because this is the air they breathe, the land where they live.''
Western Shoshone plan to travel in a delegation to Geneva, Switzerland, in March to meet with UNCERD members and present their case and the petition.
The petition states that the U.S. government is violating the rights of the Western Shoshone to ancestral lands - rights recognized by the Treaty of Ruby Valley of 1863. The lands in question cover 60 million acres stretching across Nevada, Idaho, Utah and California.
The United States, without Western Shoshone consent, has allowed gold mining and military testing of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons on their ancestral lands. Further, Western Shoshone said they are denied fair resolution in U.S. courts. .........
US Fails to Respond to UN Request; Western Shoshone Petition for Public Support
.....The Western Shoshone have now launched a nationwide petition calling on the UN Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, or CERD, to act immediately to address the human rights violations the Western Shoshone have long endured..............
.....“This isn’t just about Indians. It’s about everybody,” added Fishel. “It’s about land, clean water, clean air, and protection of significant areas. This is about not allowing the US government to place corporate interests before human rights and environmental concerns.”............
and a few words from ONE OF MY ALL TIME FAVORITE MUSIC MAKERS (yeah, i know she's an aquired taste but i LOVE HER) buffy sainte marie:
(and she is not shoshone she is cree)
.........She disappeared suddenly from the mainstream American airwaves during the Lyndon Johnson years. As part of a blacklist which affected Eartha Kitt, Taj Mahal and a host of other outspoken performers, her name was included on White House stationery as among those whose music "deserved to be suppressed". In Indian country and abroad, however, her fame only grew. She continued to appear at countless grassroots concerts, AIM events and other activist benefits. She made 17 albums of her music, three of her own television specials, spent five years on Sesame Street, scored movies, helped to found Canada's 'Music of Aboriginal Canada' JUNO category, raised a son, earned a Ph.D. in Fine Arts, taught Digital Music as adjunct professor at several colleges, and won an Academy Award Oscar for the song "Up Where We Belong"..........
my country tis of thy people you're dying
Now that your big eyes have finally opened,
Now that you're wondering how must they feel,
Meaning them that you've chased across America's movie screens.
Now that you're wondering how can it be real
That the ones you've called colorful, noble and proudIn your school propaganda
They starve in their splendor?
You've asked for my comment
I simply will render:
My country 'tis of thy people you're dying.
Now that the longhouses breed superstition
You force us to send our toddlers away
To your schools where they're taught to despise their traditions.
You forbid them their languages,
then further say
That American history really began
When Columbus set sail out of Europe,
That the nation of leeches that conquered this land
Are the biggest and bravest and boldest and best.
And yet where in your history books is the tale
Of the genocide basic to this country's birth,
Of the preachers who lied,
how the Bill of Rights failed,
How a nation of patriots returned to their earth?
And where will it tell of the Liberty Bell
As it rang with a thud O'er Kinzua mud,
And of brave Uncle Sam in Alaska this year?
My country 'tis of thy people you're dying.
Hear how the bargain was made for the West:
With her shivering children in zero degrees,
Blankets for your land, so the treaties attest,
Oh well, blankets for land is a bargain indeed,
And the blankets were those Uncle Sam had collected
From smallpox-diseased dying soldiers that day.
And the tribes were wiped out and the history books censored,
A hundred years of your statesmen have felt it's better this way
.And yet a few of the conquered have somehow survived,
Their blood runs the redder though genes have paled.
From the Grand Canyon's caverns to craven sad hills
The wounded, the losers, the robbed sing their tale.
From Los Angeles County to upstate New York
The white nation fattens while others grow lean;
Oh the tricked and evicted they know what I mean.
My country 'tis of thy people you're dying.
The past it just crumbled,
the future just threatens;
Our life blood shut up in your chemical tanks
.And now here you come, bill of sale in your hands
And surprise in your eyes that we're lacking in thanks
For the blessings of civilization you've brought us,
The lessons you've taught us, the ruin you've wrought us --Oh see what our trust in America's brought us.
My country 'tis of thy people you're dying.
Now that the pride of the sires receives charity,
Now that we're harmless and safe behind laws,
Now that my life's to be known as your "heritage,"
Now that even the graves have been robbed,
Now that our own chosen way is a novelty --Hands on our hearts we salute you your victory,
Choke on your blue white and scarlet hypocrisy
Pitying the blindness that you've never seen
That the eagles of war whose wings lent you glory
They were never no more than carrion crows,
Pushed the wrens from their nest, stole their eggs, changed their story;
The mockingbird sings it, it's all that he knows.
"Ah what can I do?" say a powerless few
With a lump in your throat and a tear in your eye --
Can't you see that their poverty's profiting you.
My country 'tis of thy people you're dying.
buffy, walk the old way heyo ha heya
no, it's NOT the fact bushwhacked lied. that stopped bothering me long ago. i know the whole administration lies (not to say that left leaning ones don't but there is a MIGHTY big difference between an under the table hummer and more than 2,000 of our sons and daughters lives being lost and i'm not even talking about katrina yet). they lie ALL of the time. they f**k up ALL of the time. they make BIG lies too. in reading some of the right leaning blogs yesterday, i saw some of them saying we (we being the ones with brains and a heart i guess) keep dragging out the OLD KATRINA WARHORSE. how it happened MONTHS ago and it's not relevant any more. we (again, we being the ones with brains and a heart i guess) have NOTHING else to pick on so we're bringing this "OLD" chestnut up again. honeys i have PLENTY to pick on believe me. this is but JUST one and it's way MORE important than a little white stained blue dress
do the bloggers in question know there are still about 2,000 MISSING from katrina? do they know goddess knows how many are STILL DISPLACED, HOMELESS, JOBLESS, SCHOOL LESS? do they know how EMPTY these people must feel? how f**king ABANDONED they must feel?
from media matters
Reporting on Bush pre-Katrina briefing, NY Times, Wash. Post, USA Today entirely forgot Bush claim that no one anticipated levee breaches
Summary: On March 2, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today reported on newly released video footage and transcripts documenting how, on the day before Hurricane Katrina made landfall, President Bush was warned -- and expressed concern -- about the possibility that the levees in New Orleans would be breached by the storm. But none of these reports mentioned that these new tapes further contradict the claim Bush made on ABC's Good Morning America several days after the storm hit that "I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees." which was debunked even at the time.
By contrast, a March 2 Associated Press report noted that, contrary to Bush's claim that the levee breaches were completely unexpected, "the transcripts and video show there was plenty of talk about that possibility -- and Bush was worried too." A March 2 Los Angeles Times article also suggested that the new footage conflicts with Bush's claim that the levee breaches were unanticipated................
i'm wondering why the chief of police was at the site to begin with but that is neither here nor there. nothing has been proven yet, but holy cow batman, what IF this was for real? what sorts of people ARE there running around in charge of OUR well being? this is a lawsuit, why isn't it a CRIMINAL charge i'm wondering???
March 3, 2006
Suit Accuses a Police Chief of Blocking CPR
By ADAM LIPTAK
Billy Snead was furiously trying to save the life of a friend having a heart attack on a West Virginia roadside in June when the police chief arrived. The chief, Mr. Snead recalled yesterday, ordered him to stop.
The chief, Robert K. Bowman of the small town of Welch, told Mr. Snead that his friend, red-faced and gasping for breath, had the virus that causes AIDS, according to a lawsuit filed yesterday. Chief Bowman grabbed Mr. Snead's shoulder, the suit says, pulling him away from his friend, Claude Green Jr.
Mr. Snead resisted, saying he was having success. Trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation, Mr. Snead tried to continue pressing and then pounding on Mr. Green's chest.
"Every time I'd do it, he'd take a breath," Mr. Snead said of Mr. Green yesterday.
But the chief was adamant, Mr. Snead said. "He just come over and told me to get off of him," Mr. Snead said.
Mr. Green, who was 43, died at Welch Community Hospital less than an hour later. Chief Bowman, the suit said, did nothing to help Mr. Green but did tell ambulance workers and hospital personnel that Mr. Green was positive for H.I.V.
As it happened, the suit says, that was false. Mr. Green was gay, but he did not have the virus, according to the suit, filed in federal court in Bluefield, W.Va.
In the suit, Mr. Green's estate, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, accused Chief Bowman and the town of Welch of violating Mr. Green's civil rights and causing his death.
The Associated Press quoted Chief Bowman as calling the accusations lies. He said that he called an ambulance and that Mr. Green was taken to the hospital in "no more than nine minutes."......
the WHOLE sky was faintly streaked with pink. i have never seen it like that. large chunks were darker pink (as you can see from the pictures) but i couldn't capture the whole effect. it only lasted a short while. i was lucky enough to see it. then it snowed late morning into the evening. i was out and about and it just made me feel so goofy for some reason or another. all in all it was a GREAT day
(of course the babes are cathy on the right and erin on the left)
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Judge Tries To Force Victim To Watch Alleged Rape Tape
After Outrage, Judge Changes Mind
UPDATED: 6:52 am EST March 2, 2006
CHICAGO -- A judge decided Wednesday not to force a woman to watch a videotape of two men having sex with her as a 16-year-old, a key piece of evidence in the trial of a man accused of raping her.
On Tuesday, Cook County Circuit Judge Kerry Kennedy had threatened to charge the Naperville woman with contempt of court for refusing to watch the tape, a move that drew outrage from victims' groups and Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
In Wednesday's ruling, Kennedy said defense attorneys could cross-examine the woman without her watching the 20-minute video, said Cook County's State's Attorney's spokeswoman Marcy Jensen. Kennedy ruled the tape can be shown after the woman, now 20, has testified and left the courtroom.
Kaethe Morris Hoffer, a private attorney working with the woman, said Kennedy made the about-face after realizing he had "no legs to stand on" legally...........
Dobson says Alito sent thank-you note for backing his nomination
By Colleen Slevin, Associated Press Writer March 1, 2006
DENVER --Focus on the Family founder James Dobson said Wednesday that new Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito sent him a letter thanking him and his radio listeners for their support during his Senate confirmation hearings.
Alito wrote that "the prayers of so many people from around the country were a palpable and powerful force. As long as I serve on the Supreme Court, I will keep in mind the trust that has been placed in me," Dobson said on his radio broadcast.
Supreme Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg said Alito's note was in response to a letter Dobson sent congratulating him on his confirmation. She said his pledge to "keep in mind the trust that has been placed in me" was included in many replies he wrote to congratulatory letters.
David Yalof, a political science professor at the University of Connecticut and the author of a book on Supreme Court vacancies, said Alito's letter did not appear to violate ethical standards.
"I think it's a very carefully worded letter, and I don't think any of it crosses the line," he said. "As long as Alito didn't (say) there is any obligation or debt owed, I don't think it is a violation of judicial canon."
Americans United for Separation of Church and State called the letter "grossly inappropriate."......
Bush Is Warned on Katrina in Video
Footage of a briefing full of dire predictions renews criticism of the government's response.
By Nicole Gaouette Times Staff Writer March 2, 2006
WASHINGTON — Newly released video footage taken just hours before Hurricane Katrina battered the Gulf Coast shows that federal officials delivered stark warnings to President Bush and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff that the storm could lead to massive loss of life."We are fully prepared," Bush responded.While the information in the video has been public for months, and was the subject of hearings and reports by Congress and the White House, the footage is giving new life to charges that the administration was detached and unresponsive in the face of one of the nation's worst natural disasters.The edited video, released by Associated Press, shows Max Mayfield, director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, briefing state and federal officials — including Chertoff and Michael D. Brown, then director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency — on Aug. 28. Bush was at his Texas ranch and participated by videophone. Mayfield tells the officials he wants "to make it absolutely clear to everyone that there is potential for large loss of life … in the coastal areas from the storm surge," and emphasizes that there is a "very, very grave concern" about the ability of the levees that separated Lake Pontchartrain from New Orleans to stand up against the storm..........
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Tucked away in the Bush administration’s recent budget is a proposal that has alarmed scientists and environmentalists. Under the plan, the Environmental Protection Agency will shut down its network of libraries serving the public and its own staff scientists.
In addition, the agency will discontinue its electronic catalog, “which tracks tens of thousands of unique documents and research studies that are available nowhere else,” reports Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility.
The agency library’s $2.5 million budget will be cut by $2 million. That includes the $500,000 budget for the EPA Headquarters library and its electronic catalog which allows users to search for documents through the entire EPA library network........................
CBS Radio Inc. Files Suit Against Howard Stern and Related Parties for Multiple Breaches of Contract, Misappropriation and Unjust Enrichment
Tuesday February 28, 5:00 pm ET
NEW YORK, Feb. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- CBS Radio today announced that it has filed suit against Howard Stern, his company One Twelve, Inc., his agent Don Buchwald, his agent's firm Don Buchwald & Associates, Inc. and Sirius Satellite Radio, Inc.
The lawsuit is for compensatory and punitive damages for multiple breaches of contract, fraud, unjust enrichment, and misappropriation of CBS Radio's broadcast time. It further seeks damages from Sirius Satellite Radio, Inc. for unfair competition and tortious interference with Stern's CBS contract.
The 43-page complaint charges:
* Howard Stern repeatedly and willfully breached his written contract
with CBS Radio over the last 22 months of that contract,
misappropriated millions of dollars worth of CBS Radio airtime for his
own financial benefit, and fraudulently concealed his interest in
hundreds of millions of dollars of Sirius stock while promoting it on
* That on or about January 9, 2006, Sirius paid over 34 million shares of
stock, valued at approximately $220 million, to Stern and his agent
because Sirius exceeded by the end of 2005 certain subscriber targets
that were set in the Sirius-Stern contract. The complaint alleges that
the Sirius-Stern contract provided that Stern was to receive this stock
payment in 2010, but it had an acceleration provision that allowed
Stern to receive the compensation as early as January 2006 if these
subscriber targets were met. All of Stern's actions for which he
received this expedited compensation occurred during the time that
Stern was under exclusive contract with CBS Radio, when the Sirius
payment terms to Stern were kept secret...........
US seeks funds to build prisons in Iraq
By Sue PlemingTue Feb 28, 7:08 PM ET
The U.S. State Department is winding down its $20 billion reconstruction program in Iraq and the only new rebuilding money in its latest budget request is for prisons, officials said on Tuesday.
State Department Iraq coordinator James Jeffrey told reporters he was asking Congress for $100 million for prisons but no other big building projects were in the pipeline for the department's 2006 supplemental and 2007 budget requests for Iraq, which total just over $4 billion.
"This is the one bit of construction we will be doing -- $100 million for additional bed capacity for the Iraqi legal system," he said.
Eventually, the Iraqis would take more detainees now in U.S. custody and more space was needed, Jeffrey said, adding that money would also be set aside to increase the number of prosecutors and "corrections advisers."
"We have another program to continue support, protection and hardening of facilities and such for the judges who are exposing their lives," he said............
.........Congress has so far allocated just over $20 billion for Iraqi reconstruction in a program that put much of its early focus on giant electricity and water projects. Many of those were later scaled back and funds diverted to training Iraq's security forces to tackle the insurgency.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was grilled by Congress this month over the rebuilding program in Iraq, where water, sewer and electricity services are worse than they were before the U.S. invasion despite the billions of dollars the United States has poured into those sectors.
The Bush administration came under heavy criticism for handing out giant contracts to U.S. firms with close government ties like oil services company Halliburton, which was once run by Vice President Dick Cheney................
on a personal note, i don't know how much more of this (corporate WEAK) i can take. i end up all messed up after reading all of this and reading all of the other blogs as well (and i'm not even the one going through any of this shite-geeze what a damn grrrl i am). i am very simple minded. i cannot understand why the world has to be this way. i just can't. power and money? that's not a good excuse in my book
How Western companies are selling their souls for a piece of the massive Chinese market
..............Today, China employs approximately 30,000 cyber-police to monitor Web traffic and postings from the country's roughly 111 million Internet users. Writing articles "incompatible with the mainstream ideology" is prohibited. Posting messages that "damage the reputation of the state" can get you arrested. And publishing anything deemed to be a state secret can carry the death penalty. The list of banned websites now stands at 500,000 and growing.
Even with the full weight of the Communist regime behind it, the censorship effort would have been futile without equipment and know-how supplied by Western vendors like Cisco Systems Inc., SunMicrosystems Inc. and Nortel Networks Corp. And with the world's three dominant Internet companies -- Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft -- in a blind rush for a piece of China's spectacular wealth, Beijing has found all the willing accomplices it needs to strip the Internet of its anonymity, its freedom, and to turn it into yet another tool of repression. Google and Microsoft have recently launched Chinese versions of their Internet software that block access to topics that offend China's ruling party, such as democracy and Tibet. Yahoo recently handed over a Chinese journalist to authorities after he posted information critical of the government on an Internet message board..................
SHAME ON YOU YAHOO SHAME SHAME SHAME
............But the questions of human rights and corporate ethics in China go far beyond a single industry and a handful of companies. China's emergence as an industrial and commercial power represents the biggest economic revolution in a generation, and in the rush to invest, critics say Western business is selling its soul, one ugly compromise at a time. This month, T. Kumar, Amnesty International's advocacy director for the Asia Pacific region, testified before the U.S. congressional human rights caucus, urging lawmakers to rein in big business before any more principles are sacrificed. "In the pursuit of new and lucrative markets, these IT companies are contributing to human rights violations," Kumar said. "Unless strong action is taken, this type of practice will not only increase, but is likely to move into other areas, which will lead to disastrous impacts on the Chinese people."..........
this is rather dry but it does have a lot of good links and information.
Defining Corporate Complicity in Human Rights Abuses by Bill Baue
Business and Human Rights Seminar report maps the landscape of corporate complicity in human rights abuses, and addresses the dichotomy of mandatory laws versus voluntary codes. SocialFunds.com -- Researching and clarifying corporate complicity in human rights abuses is one of five mandates charged to Harvard Professor John Ruggie in a July 2005 appointment as Special Representative of the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General on Human Rights and Transnational Corporations. Helping move this agenda forward in London in December 2005 was the convening of the third annual Business & Human Rights Seminar, organized by the steering committee made up of Amnesty International, Business Leaders Initiative on Human Rights, One World Trust, The Prince of Wales International Business Leaders Forum, Respect, and TwentyFifty Limited. Last week saw the release of a report summarizing the proceedings entitled Exploring Responsibility and Complicity, the theme of the event. .... ......... The Alien Tort Claims Act ( ATCA) case referred to was brought by 15 Burmese villagers alleging that Unocal (ticker: UCL) commissioned Burmese soldiers to protect its Yadana gas pipeline knowing they committed murder, rape, and forced labor. "That ruling stated that complicity involved three things: practical assistance being given to the perpetrator; assistance having a substantial effect on the commission of the criminal act, and finally the knowledge criterion." "But the decision was vacated because the parties settled the dispute, and so it has no current legal standing," ............. ..............Other Seminar participants advanced different modes of defining corporate complicity in human rights abuses, using actual incidents to illustrate the dynamic. For example, Amnesty International Secretary General Irene Khan cited the cases of Yahoo (YHOO) revealing the identity of journalist Shi Tao to Chinese authorities, and Chevron (CVX) quelling a protest by calling on Nigerian Joint Task Force soldiers, who killed one demonstrator. "[T]hese are two cases where the state clearly had the primary responsibility and obligation to protect human rights, but it also shows the kind of complicity issues we are talking about, when a company itself does not commit an abuse, but benefits from an abuse committed by someone else, remains silent in the face of the abuse, or assists, aids and abets the state in committing abuse," Ms. Khan said. .................
anyway, i wanted to make the yorick scarf on knitty.com for a friend
i didn't have the right yarn (i ordered it and just got it as a matter of fact, but could NOT find it when i started this project) so i substituted. i didn't have the right sized needles so i substituted (two sizes bigger, but with this project it really shouldn't matter) those as well.
according to the article accompanying the yorick directions, white and off white yarns may NOT felt very well or at all. so i had no idea if this was going to work or not. so i finished knitting and started fulling by hand in the sink. it wasn't working. not only wasn't it working BUT it started stretching out and getting bigger and bigger. i had nothing to lose so i grabbed a pillow case, tossed my yorick in and threw it in the wash. hot water - then a cold rinse. when the cycle was through (ONE cycle mind you) this is what i found:
this is what it is SUPPOSED to look like:
it's a wee bit smaller than it's supposed to be! i have felted a ton of things in my day, but i have not seen something felt like this in ONE wash cycle! the yarn IS pretty cool though. fuzzy and THICK.
oh and the BEST part is, when i took the scarf out of the wash, it somehow had tied itself in a knot at one point. how that happened is BEYOND me. THAT PART DID NOT FELT.
i cannot throw it in the wash again as it is already too small so i came up with what i think is a brilliant idea! i'm going to knit two patches with black skulls knit right in them. felt those and sew them onto the scarf where it didn't felt! we'll see how it comes out. of course i am starting a new scarf for my friend. i am using EVEN BIGGER NEEDLES (hoping it won't shrink as much as the first one i made) BUT the yarn that the directions call for
click on the link at the bottom of this posting for some of the pictures.
Ala. Paper Publishes Civil Rights Photos
Feb 27, 10:45 AM (ET)
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Dozens of never before released photos from the civil rights era came to light this weekend after an intern discovered them buried in an equipment closet at the Birmingham News.
The photos had been in a box marked: "Keep. Do Not Sell." But at the time they were taken, the newspaper didn't want to draw attention to the racial discord of the 1950s and 1960s, news photographers from the period said.
"The editors thought if you didn't publish it, much of this would go away," said Ed Jones, 81, a photographer at The News from 1942 to 1987. "Associated Press kept on wanting pictures, and The News would be slow on letting them have them, so they flooded the town with photographers."
On Sunday, the photos finally went to print in a special eight-page section called "Unseen. Unforgotten." Others are on the newspaper's Web site at .http://www.al.com/unseen ....................
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
NEIL BUSH (AND HIS FAMILY)
Buried By History
The Bush Empire
only ONE man (as far as i can determine) reported this on the national news. it was reported ONCE and we never heard ANOTHER PEEP
HINCKLEY: HIT MAN FOR THE SHADOW GOVERNMENT?
...........John Chancellor, eyebrows raised, informed the viewers of NBC Nightly News that the brother of the man who tried to kill the president was acquainted with the son of the man who would have become president if the attack had been successful. As a matter of fact, Chancellor said in a bewildered tone, Scott Hinckley and Neil Bush had been scheduled to have dinner together at the home of the vice president's son the very next night.
And, of course, the engagement had been canceled. . . Then a peculiar thing happened: The story vanished. To this day, it has never been reported in the New York Times, Washington Post or many other metropolitan newspapers, never again mentioned by any of the television news networks, ......................
Dennis Weaver, 81, Sidekick on 'Gunsmoke,' Dies
of course he was MUCH more than a sidekick on gunsmoke.........
............1982, with his wife and some friends, he founded an organization called Love Is Feeding Everyone, which fed more than 100,000 people in Los Angeles each week. In 1993, he and his wife founded a nonprofit group called the Institute of Ecolonomics — a word Mr. Weaver coined from combining ecology and economics — to find solutions to environmental problems. In 2003 the institute created a "Drive to Survive" campaign in which Mr. Weaver led a fleet of alterative-fuel vehicles on a cross-country tour to Washington to raise awareness about reducing the country's dependence on oil.
Since 1990, Mr. Weaver and his wife had lived in an earthship: an almost 10,000-square-foot, solar-powered home in Ridgway constructed from about 3,000 recycled tires and 300,000 tin and aluminum cans. ................
Dennis Weaver, 81, Dies in Ridgway
........Off-screen, Weaver served as president of the Screen Actors Guild; a vegetarian, he was an activist for environmental and charitable causes. He served as president of Love Is Feeding Everyone, feeding 150,000 needy people a week in Los Angeles County, and later founded the Institute of Ecolonomics, which sought solutions to economic and environmental problems.
He spoke everywhere from the United Nations to the U.S. Congress, as well as to college students and schoolchildren about fighting pollution.Weaver’s “Earthship” home was probably the most visible of Weaver’s crusades. He and his wife, Gerry, built the solar-powered Colorado dwelling out of recycled tires and cans. The thick walls helped keep the inside temperature even year-round..........
....2003, Weaver embarked on the “Drive to Survive,” leading a fleet of alternative-fueled vehicles on a cross-country whistle-stop tour, from California to Washington, D.C., to increase awareness of the need to reduce our nation’s dependence on oil. He had, just recently, joined forces with singer Willie Nelson to promote the development and use of farmer-grown biodiesel as a viable alternative fuel.
Weaver’s Institute of Ecolonomics continues to operate, and has established curricula used in U.S. universities, under the leadership of Peter LaVaute, of Ecosense Solutions www.ecosensesolutions.com), and Rob Wood, of Missouri Southern State University (www.ecolonomics.org)................
the following is just the VERY BEGINNING of an extensive report by amnesty usa (link on the title above)
chevon in nigeria:
"It is like paradise and hell. They have everything. We have nothing. They throw our petitions in the dustbin. They are the cause of all our problems. If we protest, they send soldiers. They sign agreements with us and then ignore us. We have graduates going hungry, without jobs. And they bring people from Lagos to work here." – Eghare W.O. Ojhogar, Chief of the Ugborodo community, one of whose members died during a protest at Chevron Nigeria’s Escravos oil terminal where demonstrators were assaulted and injured by the security forces on 4 February 2005.1
"At around 10am the soldiers arrived in 15 gunboats. There were about 100 of them. They started pouring petrol on houses. I could not count the number of firebombs used; there were too many. They fired with big guns, but no teargas was used. Two- to three-year-olds and the old ones stayed in their houses, and 12-year-old Lucky was shot dead."
L.D.I. Orumiegha-Bari, Chairman of the Council of Chiefs, following an armed forces raid on the town of Odioma, 19 February 2005, in which at least 17 people died.
“Our health has been damaged seriously by the contamination caused by Texaco. Many people in our community now have red stains on their skin and others have been vomiting and fainting. Some little children have died because their parents did not know they should not drink the river water.”
Excerpt: Affidavit of the Secoya tribe given by Elias Piaguaie -Aguinda, et al v. Texaco Inc. - Case # 93-CV-7527.
.......Over the past four decades, a succession of U.S. petroleum companies including Texaco (now owned by Chevron Corporation), Occidental Petroleum, ARCO, and Maxus Energy Corporation, among others, have come to Ecuador in search of oil. Environmental and human rights defenders claim that these companies have left behind a trail of destruction, posing a serious danger to people’s survival............
.............Texaco intentionally dumped more than 19 billion gallons of toxic wastewaters into the region and was responsible for 16.8 million gallons of crude oil spilling from the main pipeline into the forest. By comparison, the infamous Exxon Valdez tanker disaster in 1989 spilled 10.8 million gallons off the coast of Alaska. The report alleges that these actions contaminated both the soil and the groundwater of the communities in the area and will continue to threaten the economic and cultural bases of Indigenous peoples' survival....................
.........On 4 February 2005, soldiers from the Joint Task Force fired on protesters at the Escravos oil terminal on the Delta State coast. One demonstrator, Bawo Ajeboghuku, was shot and later died from his injuries, and at least 30 others were injured, some of them seriously, by blows from rifle butts and other weapons. Security personnel were said to have fired first tear gas, then live ammunition, to disperse between two and three hundred demonstrators from Ugborodo, a small community of the Itsekiri ethnic group, who had entered the high-security facility at first light. Chevron Nigeria, which operates the terminal, said that 11 employees and security officers received minor injuries. The industry-strength boundary fence was cut in five places, and windows and helicopter windscreens were smashed. It was several hours before the injured protesters reached a hospital, a lengthy boat journey away. Neither the security forces nor Chevron Nigeria provided adequate medical care or assistance to transport the injured. The protest was over a Memorandum of Understanding signed by Ugborodo community representatives and Chevron Nigeria in 2002. The Ugborodo protesters said that Chevron Nigeria had not provided the jobs and development projects promised in return for a "non-disruptive operating environment". Until October 2005, Amnesty International had received no information suggesting that a thorough or independent inquiry − to establish what happened, who was injured and who was responsible − has been carried out by the federal government or by Chevron Nigeria. The company said it could not control the actions of the security forces in any way, and did not indicate taking any immediate steps to avoid a recurrence of such a case. 1.3 Death and devastation by gunboat At least 17 people were reported to have been killed and two women raped when members of the Joint Task Force raided the community of Odioma on the Bayelsa State coast in gunboats and other vessels. The attack on 19 February 2005 was ostensibly to arrest members of an armed vigilante group suspected of killing four local councillors and eight others earlier that month. The suspects were not captured but, over a period of a few days, 80 per cent of the homes in Odioma were razed, most of them near the waterfront. Two of those killed, Balasanyun Omieh, a woman said to be 105 years old, and two-year-old Inikio Omieye, burned to death. Three people were reportedly shot dead. Many inhabitants fled the violence and did not return. Over 100 of them have not been able to return. The roots of the violence lay in a dispute between communities, all part of the Ijaw ethnic group, for control of land planned for oil exploration by Shell Nigeria since 1998. Shell Nigeria had identified the landowners as the Obioku and Nembe- Bassambiri communities, but withdrew from the area in January 2005 when it became aware that Odioma disputed its ownership. Members of the vigilante group in Odioma suspected of the killing earlier that month were reported to have been recruited by a subcontractor of Shell Nigeria to be responsible for security in the area, despite their alleged record of criminality. Shell is not known to have expressed concern about the attack on the people of Odioma or their continuing destitution. A Judicial Commission of Inquiry appointed by the State Governor to investigate...................
there really isn't much i can add here. i'm a human being. the powers that be obviously are NOT human. this is OUR earth, they are OUR people. whatever happens EFFECTS ALL OF US ONE WAY OR ANOTHER. i've said it before and i'll say it again. i KNOW these people (the powers that be people that is) have families. have wives and husbands and children and grandchildren. do they NOT want a SAFE EARTH for them? do they not want ALL people treated like they want their families treated? how do they sleep at night? i sure as shite don't know but i DO know i only sleep two or three hours a night............
HOW CAN THEY POSSIBLY PROFESS TO BELIEVE IN A GOD?
Monday, February 27, 2006
.............Although these companies have publicly condemned and expressed outrage at the use of child slavery, they admit their ongoing purchase of Ivory Coast cocoa. Another major player in the cocoa industry is Nestle. Nestle recently made waves in the U.K. by introducing the first line of fair trade coffee from a major roaster in that country. But their continued refusal to extend a fair price to cocoa farmers and their children underlines the shallowness of their commitment.
As one of the largest chocolate manufacturers in the world and the third largest buyer of cocoa from the Ivory Coast, Nestle bears responsible for eliminating slave and child labor from the chocolate production processes. With processing, storage and export facilities throughout the Ivory Coast, Nestle is well aware of the tragically unjust labor practices taking place on the farms with which it continues to do business. The enormity of Nestle's profits (over $65 billion in annual sales) and its leveraged position in the food industry underline the company's culpability and capability to ensure a fair wage and fair labor practices.
Mars, Hershey's and Nestle argue that it would be impossible for them to control the labor practices of their suppliers, but a number of other large corporations have exemplified this possibility. These companies include Clif Bar, Cloud Nine, Dagoba Organic Chocolate, Denman Island Chocolate, Divine, Gardners Candies, Green and Black's, Kailua Candy Company, Koppers Chocolate, L.A. Burdick Chocolates, Montezuma's Chocolates, Newman's Own Organics, Omanhene Cocoa Bean Company, Rapunzel Pure Organics and The Endangered Species Chocolate Company..........
Ports Deal to Get Broader Security Review
By TED BRIDIS, Associated Press Writer 2 hours, 49 minutes ago
The Bush administration said Sunday it will accept an extraordinary offer by a United Arab Emirates-based company to submit to a second — and broader — U.S. review of potential security risks in its deal to take over significant operations at six leading American ports. The plan averts an impending political showdown.
The Treasury Department said in a statement it will promptly begin the review once the company formally files a request for one. It said the same government panel that earlier investigated the deal but found no reason for national security concerns will reconsider it.
In six pages of documents sent earlier in the day to the White House, Dubai-based DP World asked for a 45-day investigation of plans to run shipping terminals in New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.
The announcement means the White House likely won't face a revolt by fellow Republicans when lawmakers return Monday from a weeklong break. A united Republican Party can assert that its leaders — both in Congress and at the White House — have taken additional steps to protect national security.
In a statement Sunday, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., said he will recommend that the Senate wait for results of the broader review before acting on legislation to delay or block the deal. Frist said he anticipates oversight hearings to continue to examine the agreement and its implications on maritime security...........
why don't we put HALLIBURTON in charge of our ports???????? let's just further open our pockets to them. why this continues to go on with most of us being silent is beyond my comprehension.
Army to pay Halliburton unit most of disputed costs
02/26/2006 @ 10:36 pm Filed by RAW STORY
A disputed no-bid contract in Iraq which Pentagon auditors determined contained "excessive" charges will be paid for almost in full by the Army, according to a story set for the front page of Monday's New York Times, RAW STORY has learned.
Excerpts from the article written by James Glanz:
The Army has decided to reimburse a Halliburton subsidiary for nearly all of its costs on a disputed $2.41 billion no-bid contract to deliver fuel and repair oil equipment in Iraq, even though the Pentagon's own auditors had identified more than $250 million in charges as potentially excessive or unjustified.....................
do you know where your chocolate comes from? no? well perhaps from now on every time you buy something with cocoa in it, you’ll think twice about who is gathering up that cocoa and why. i do hope you also think twice about which corporation to buy it from as well
this (in part) is from the international labor rights fund
Tell Nestle to Stop buying Child Made Cocoa
Nestle & Cocoa
Nestle USA is a part of Nestle SA in Vevey, Switzerland -- the world's largest food company and also the subject of one of the world's longest running boycotts. For over twenty years Nestle has faced continued pressure from consumers to end its agressive and irresonsible promotion of infant formula - a policy that has cost the lives of over 1.5 million infants around the world. But Nestle's irresponsible attitude towards children doesn't end there. As a leading exporter of cocoa from the Ivory Coast, Nestle has also been implicated in the ongoing abuse and torture of child cocoa laborers……..
………International Labor Rights Fund has also filed a lawsuit in 2005 against Nestle, Cargil and ADM on behalf of Malian children who were trafficked from Mali into the Ivory Coast and forced to work twelve to fourteen hours a day with no pay, little food and sleep, and frequent beatings………..
this is in part from the milwaukee journal sentinel yes, it was a 2001 article but suit was brought forth in 2005. as far as i know, ALL of these companies are STILL abusing humans (and who knows about animals and the earth)
ADM plant makes Milwaukee a key site in chocolate business
By TOM DAYKIN
of the Journal Sentinel staff
Last Updated: June 23, 2001
The fruits of African slave labor might be found in Milwaukee, home of cocoa processor ADM Cocoa.
ADM Cocoa, a subsidiary of Decatur, Ill.-based agribusiness conglomerate Archer Daniels Midland Co., operates a cocoa processing plant at 12500 W. Carmen Ave., on Milwaukee's far northwest side.
Like other U.S. and European cocoa processors, ADM Cocoa uses cocoa beans from the Ivory Coast, in West Africa, as a raw ingredient to make chocolate. An investigation by Knight Ridder News Service has revealed that some cocoa beans are harvested in the Ivory Coast by child slave labor, and are mixed with beans harvested legitimately before being sold to chocolate makers.
U.S. chocolate makers at first said they weren't aware that slaves - mostly preteen and teenage boys - were used to harvest cocoa beans purchased in Africa. After Knight Ridder began inquiring about the use of slaves on Ivory Coast cocoa farms, however, the Vienna, Va.-based Chocolate Manufacturers Association in late April acknowledged that a problem might exist and said it strongly condemned "these practices wherever they may occur."…………..
and this - please note some changes ‘don’t have to occur until 2008’. 2008? DO NOT BUY CHOCOLATE from companies that use forced labor or child labor. YOU DON’T NEED IT THAT BADLY
ADM targeted in lawsuit alleging forced labor in cocoa farming
By Amy Hoak
DECATUR -- Willy Wonka may be having a fine time at the box office this summer, but real life chocolate makers have a federal lawsuit on their hands.
One of them resides in our back yard.
Archer Daniels Midland Co. is one of three companies named in a federal lawsuit that alleges the industry's involvement in the trafficking, torture and forced labor of children who cultivate and harvest cocoa beans. Nestle and Cargill Inc. also are named in the lawsuit filed earlier this month in Federal District Court in Los Angeles.
The lawsuit was filed by the Washington, D.C.-based International Labor Rights Fund on behalf of children who were trafficked from Mali into the Ivory Coast and forced to work 12- to 14-hour days, according to the fund's news release. The children allegedly received no pay, little food or sleep and frequent beatings.
It also was filed in the wake of the chocolate industry's missed July 1 federal deadline to develop standards for monitoring and certifying African suppliers, an attempt to keep tabs on the labor practices of cocoa farming operations.
ADM's response: These changes take time.
"The effort to obtain accurate information regarding labor conditions in the West African cocoa sector and to respond appropriately is complicated and difficult and will take the cooperation of many interested parties over an extended period of time," ADM said in a statement posted on its Web site.
"Plans for investigating and addressing labor concerns must be informed by the local culture, beliefs, economics and infrastructure."
In the release, ADM also noted that since 2001, more than 1,000 farmers attended training programs for co-operatives in Cote d'Ivoire. ADM personnel trained them on topics of cocoa quality, child labor, working conditions and HIV/AIDS awareness.
The industry's efforts weren't enough for San Francisco-based Global Exchange, which joined the lawsuit under California's unfair business practice law. The organization alleges no effective steps have been taken to address the child labor problem and, further, that companies have led the public to believe otherwise.
But the response from industry was enough for U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and Rep. Eliot Engel, D-New York. The two developed the Harkin-Engel Protocol in 2001 to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. When the July
2005 deadline for certification standards was missed, the two expressed disappointment coupled with a willingness to allow industry more time to address the problem.
Under the Protocol, the industry now is expected to roll out a certification system, which includes monitoring, data analysis, reporting and activities to address the worst forms of child labor -- aggressively in Cote d'Ivoire and Ghana -- by July 2008. Support for programs to improve conditions in the farming communities is also expected.
here is a great reference source CHOCOLATE AND SLAVERY: CHILD LABOR IN COTE D'IVOIRE
and from the global exchange
Harkin-Engel Protocol on Chocolate and Child Slavery Expires on July 1
Human Rights Groups Say the Chocolate Industry Broke Its Promise to Eradicate Illegal Child Labor from Chocolate Production; Call for Legislation
June 30, 2005
CONTACT: Jamie Guzzi, Global Exchange, 415-575-5538, cell 415-505-7427
Natacha Thys, ILRF, 202-347-4100 ext.110
San Francisco, CA -- July 1, 2005 will mark the expiration of the Harkin-Engel Protocol, a voluntary protocol agreed to by the chocolate industry to ensure U.S. chocolate products aren't made using illegal child labor. Eyewitness reports from the field confirm that the industry has failed to fulfill its promise to monitor and certify by July 2005 that the cocoa it imports is not made by forced child labor. Thus, Global Exchange, an international human rights group based in San Francisco, and the International Labor Rights Fund, an advocacy organization based in Washington, DC, are calling on the US government to step in and end the use of illegal child labor by the U.S. chocolate industry………..
here is a partial listing of SLAVERY FREE CHOCOLATE SOURCES
SLAVERY FREE CHOCOLATE
To Support Slave-free and Fair Trade Chocolate
The human rights group Global Exchange is launching a "Fair Trade Cocoa" campaign this Valentine's Day to get the slave labor out of your chocolate. See globalexchange.org/cocoa for more information.
Also, Steven Millman of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology sent letters to over 200 chocolate companies, asking if they used cocoa which might be tainted with child slave labor. He posted their responses, and his list of best chocolate companies at RadicalThought.org.
Here's a short (incomplete) list of companies known to sell slavery-free chocolate and cocoa products:
Dagoba Organic Chocolate
Denman Island Chocolate
Green and Black's
Kailua Candy Company
L.A. Burdick Chocolates
Newman's Own Organics
Omanhene Cocoa Bean Company
Rapunzel Pure Organics
The Endangered Species Chocolate Company
Note: No organic beans are produced in Ivory Coast, but an organic label is no guarantee that the product is slave-free. Newman's Own, however, is both. Newman's Own contracts with Costa Rica producers who are closely monitored to comply with labor laws and organic standards.
(Source: Food Revolution, by John Robbins)