- Signs of the Times Archive for Mon, 09 Jul 2007 -

Sections on today's Signs Page:

SOTT Focus
Transmarginal Inhibition

Laura Knight-Jadczyk and
2007-07-08 08:19:00

Wow! It's been almost three weeks since I have written anything for my blog or SOTT! How time does fly! But, that doesn't mean that I haven't been writing; as it happens, I have. Not only am I working on the research for my upcoming book, "The Horns of Moses," I have been working on our Cassiopedia project. After finishing the latest entry on Transmarginal Inhibition as researched by Ivan Pavlov, I thought that it was important enough to bring it to wider attention.
Pavlov demonstrated that when Transmarginal Inhibition began to take over a condition similar to hysteria manifested. In states of fear and excitement, normally sensible human beings will accept the most wildly improbably suggestions.

Once you read this information, I think that you will agree with me that this is the process that has been used on the global masses for quite some time, with a peak of stress inducement on September 11, 2001. You will also understand why so many people have been hoodwinked. (By the way, you won't find this kind of in-depth information on such subjects on Wikipedia!)

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Signs Economic Commentary for 9 July 2007

Donald Hunt
Signs of the Times
2007-07-09 10:08:00

Oil prices rose last week and the dollar fell against the euro, ending close to historic lows. Hedge funds keep falling prey to the subprime mortgage mess. Yet the U.S. stock market rose and mainstream commentators were looking at halfway decent jobs numbers for June as a sign that all is well with the economy. The only way that could possibly be true would be if the housing drop has bottomed out. As we will see, the chances of that are slim.

So, what went wrong? And what is coming next?

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Best of the Web
Making Gaza "Scream"

Stephen Lendman
S J Lendman Blog
2007-07-09 14:07:00

Palestinian girl in tears after watching her family die after Israel bombs a beach

Making Gaza "scream" is the same kind of scheme the Nixon administration planned for Chile after social democrat Salvador Allende won a plurality of the votes in September, 1970. Before the Chilean Congress confirmed him as president in October, an infamous Nixon CIA Director Richard Helms handwritten note read: "One in 10 chance perhaps, but save Chile!...not concerned with risks involved...$10,000,000 available, more if necessary...make the economy 'scream.' " By it, he meant saving the country from a socially responsible leader, like Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, using his nation's wealth equitably and not just for its privileged elites. "Scream" it did through Nixon's "soft line" scheme "to do all within our power to condemn Chile and Chileans to utmost deprivation and poverty," in the words of his Chilean ambassador Edward Korry.

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"They Have Destroyed Everything": Terms of Debate on Iraq

Chris Floyd
Empire Burlesque
2007-07-09 12:39:00

Death everywhere, death every day, nothing but death and the stench of death and the never-ending agony of the aftermath of death. This is the true and only meaningful context of all the punditry and political posturing around the "issue" of Iraq. While the White House maneuvers to "buy time" for the president and provide "political cover" for continuing the war - and the Democrats make plans to float some "proposals" on "beginning to redeploy some forces" - the cry of an Iraqi grandfather whose entire family was murdered in the bombing at Amerli rips like a knife to the heart of the matter:
"We were wiped out mercilessly, and we blame the Americans, the Iraqi government, the criminals and all the politicians who brought us catastrophe and destruction. They have destroyed everything with their sectarianism and politics."

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Anthrax Coverup: A Government Insider Speaks Out

Steve Watson
2007-07-09 00:11:00

Is it possible that the anthrax attacks were launched from within our own government? A former Bush 1 advisor thinks it is.

Francis A. Boyle, an international law expert who worked under the first Bush Administration as a bioweapons advisor in the 1980s, has said that he is convinced the October 2001 anthrax attacks that killed five people were perpetrated and covered up by criminal elements of the U.S. government. The motive: to foment a police state by killing off and intimidating opposition to post-9/11 legislation such as the USA PATRIOT Act and the later Military Commissions Act.

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U.S. News
Who Runs the CIA? Intelligence Mercenaries for Hire

R.J. Hillhouse
Washington Post
2007-07-08 16:09:00

Red alert: Our national security is being outsourced.

The most intriguing secrets of the "war on terror" have nothing to do with al-Qaeda and its fellow travelers. They're about the mammoth private spying industry that all but runs U.S. intelligence operations today.

Surprised? No wonder. In April, Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell was poised to publicize a year-long examination of outsourcing by U.S. intelligence agencies. But the report was inexplicably delayed -- and suddenly classified a national secret. What McConnell doesn't want you to know is that the private spy industry has succeeded where no foreign government has: It has penetrated the CIA and is running the show.

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The Show Must Go On! White House again to defy Congress on attorney firings

Peter Baker
2007-07-08 15:09:00

The White House has decided to defy Congress in its latest demand for information regarding the dismissal of nine U.S. attorneys, sources familiar with the decision said Saturday. Such an action would escalate the constitutional struggle and propel it closer to a court showdown.

Senate and House committees have directed President Bush to provide by Monday a detailed justification of his executive privilege claims and a full accounting of documents he is withholding. But White House counsel Fred Fielding plans to tell lawmakers that he has already provided the legal basis for the claims and will not provide a log of withheld documents, the sources said.

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U.S. seen as No. 1 threat to world peace

Daniel Dombey and Stanley Pignal
LA Times
2007-07-09 13:01:00

Europeans consistently regard the United States as the biggest threat to world stability, a poll reveals.

A survey carried out in June by Harris Research for the Financial Times shows that 32% of respondents in five European countries regard the United States as a bigger threat than any other state.

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11-Year-Old Leads Alabama Police On Chase While Drunk

Nicole King
2007-07-09 08:12:00

Police thought they had a felon on their hands when a driver led them on an 8-mile chase up to 100 mph, but found that the car was driven by an 11-year-old girl. Alabama police say the girl was also drunk.

The girl was slightly injured in the crash. She's charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, speeding, leaving the scene of an accident and reckless endangerment.

Police say the chase began around 10 p.m. when a patrol officer saw the car speeding along the highway. The girl sped up when the officer tried to pull the car over. She also sideswiped another car during the chase, before rolling the car.

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Libby 'spared jail to avoid implicating others'

Peter Walker
2007-07-09 06:39:00

George Bush could have spared the former White House aide Lewis "Scooter" Libby from jail to avoid him implicating others in the administration, a Democratic congressman investigating the affair claimed yesterday.

Comment: No way, really?! How is this possible? The current U.S. administration is one of the finest, most honest and peace loving administrations ever!...Hmm, wait a second and let us check our records. Apparently we were talking about some other alternate reality. In this reality, the U.S. administration is in fact a dictatorship

The White House immediately dismissed the allegation - made by John Conyers, the chairman of the House of Representatives judiciary committee - as "ridiculous and baseless".

Last week, Mr Bush intervened to commute the two and a half year jail sentence given to Mr Libby for lying and obstructing an investigation into the leak of a CIA officer's identity.

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70 Year Old Woman Beaten, Arrested for Having a Dry Lawn

Julie Espinosa
Salt Lake Tribune
2007-07-09 06:03:00

Two days after Independence Day, 70-year-old Betty Perry experienced an ordeal she said shouldn't be happening in America.

The retired military and U.S. government employee answered the door at her home Friday morning to talk with a police officer about her bone-dry lawn and ended up getting arrested and suffering a bloody nose.

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UK & Euro-Asian News
Russia Accuses US of Building 'New Berlin Wall'

2007-07-08 15:53:00

A senior Russian government minister accused the United States on Sunday of building a "new Berlin wall" with its plans for a missile defence system in Central Europe that have infuriated Moscow.


"They are trying to push us into knocking heads with Europe... in order to create a new dividing line, a new Berlin Wall," first deputy prime minister Sergei Ivanov said in an interview on state-run Rossiya television.

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Dutch government warns company to cease work on illegal Wall

John Smith
2007-07-09 15:17:00

Maxime Verhagen, the Dutch Foreign Minister, has recently warned a Dutch company to cease all involvement in the construction of the illegal Israeli Wall that is currently in the process of confiscating many hundreds-of-thousands of Dunums of Palestinian-owned land for its construction.

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Liar, Liar, pants on fire!!! - More Al-Qaeda propaganda from The Times

Larisa Alexandrovna
2007-07-08 14:25:00

David Leppard continues to embarrass the Times of London in the same way that Judith Miller will forever be an embarrassment to the NYT. For his latest propaganda piece, Leppard breathlessly reports the propaganda handed him, despite UK officials on the record saying the exact opposite:

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UK: Wartime code breaker and leading geneticist die in motorway crash

Peter Stebbings
Daily Mail
2007-07-09 10:36:00

An academic who was instrumental in breaking enemy codes during the Second World War has died in a car crash.

Professor Donald Michie, 84, was killed when his vehicle left the M11 as he travelled home to London from Cambridge.

His ex- wife Dame Anne McLaren, also a respected academic, was in the car with him and also died.

Witnesses said that the pair's black Fiat Punto left the motorway, plunged down an embankment and hit a tree. Professor Michie worked at Bletchley Park, the Buckinghamshire base where scientists deciphered German war codes between 1942 and 1945.

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Three patsies found guilty over July 21 bomb plot

Peter Walker and agencies
The Guardian
2007-07-09 10:21:00

Three men were today found guilty of an extremist Islamist plot to detonate bombs on tube trains and a bus in London on July 21 2005.

Comment: The timing of this verdict is perfect and is likely to make the average reader think that the recent 'terror plots' were for real.

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Diana: Fiat driver 'shot in the head'

Martin Evans
Daily Express
2007-07-09 10:28:00

THE paparazzi photographer at the centre of investigations into Princess Diana's death died with two bullet holes in his head, it is claimed.

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Around the World
Richard Neville asks: Is this man a psychopath?

richard Neville
2007-07-09 11:25:00

U.S. General Dan McNeill, Commander of NATO's forces in Afghanistan,

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Workers say pesticides made them sterile

2007-07-09 11:11:00

Los Angeles - The pesticide was designed to kill worms infesting the roots of banana trees on Latin American plantations. But at least 5,000 agricultural workers from Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and Panama have filed five lawsuits in this country claiming they were left sterile after being exposed in the 1970s to the pesticide known as DBCP.

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Big Brother
New York plans 3,000 surveillance cameras to fight terror, traffic... and to keep a close eye on you

2007-07-09 14:14:00

New York - London's so-called "ring of steel" has prompted New York City to seek to expand its own anti-terror surveillance camera programme to the economic belly in lower Manhattan, news reports said Monday. Provided anti-terror funding will be obtained, up to 3,000 surveillance cameras should be installed in the large area comprising Wall Street and the World Trade Center, which is being reconstructed from the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

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By and for the greedy: BSA announces $1 million reward for piracy snitches

Ken Fisher
Ars Technica
2007-07-09 08:18:00

Do you work for a business that's pirating software for its own internal use? If so, you could be in for a windfall if you report it to the Business Software Alliance (BSA) in time. The BSA announced today that they are increasing their reward ceiling for accurate piracy reports to a big, fat $1,000,000. The increased reward amount is a special promotion which will be accompanied by radio and online ad campaigns; it will expire after October. After that, the reward returns to its regularly scheduled payload of $200,000.

Why the big bucks? The BSA believes that $1,000,000 might make even the most timid person don the daring cape of the whistleblower. "Businesses often have a million excuses for having unlicensed software on office computers. BSA is now offering up to a million dollars for employees who turn them in," said Jenny Blank, director of enforcement for BSA, in a statement.

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Judges OK warrantless monitoring of Web use - Privacy rules don't apply to Internet messages

Bob Egelko
2007-07-07 00:42:00

Federal agents do not need a search warrant to monitor a suspect's computer use and determine the e-mail addresses and Web pages the suspect is contacting, a federal appeals court ruled Friday.

In a drug case from San Diego County, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco likened computer surveillance to the "pen register" devices that officers use to pinpoint the phone numbers a suspect dials, without listening to the phone calls themselves.

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Chinese city bans anonymous web postings

2007-07-07 21:12:00

A Chinese city plans to ban anonymous online postings after Internet users successfully campaigned to stop completion of a chemical factory.

The ban mandates Internet users must provide proof of their real identify when posting messages on more than 100,000 Web sites registered in Xiamen, the Times of London reported Saturday.

City officials acted after thousands of residents rallied each other through cell phone text messages and Internet blogs to march on the site of a $14 million chemical plant. Construction since has been stopped pending an investigation into environmental concerns, the Times reported.

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Axis of Evil
Fidel Castro: The Killing Machine - Reflections from a Target of the CIA

Fidel Castro
2007-07-09 15:22:00

It was announced that the CIA would be declassifying hundreds of pages on illegal actions that included plans to eliminate the leaders of foreign governments. Suddenly the publication is halted and it is delayed one day. No coherent explanation was given. Perhaps someone in the White House looked over the material.

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Powell tries to wash his hands of the war he helped start

Sarah Baxter
Times Online
2007-07-09 12:44:00

THE former American secretary of state Colin Powell has revealed that he spent 2½ hours vainly trying to persuade President George W Bush not to invade Iraq and believes today's conflict cannot be resolved by US forces.

"I tried to avoid this war," Powell said at the Aspen Ideas Festival in Colorado. "I took him through the consequences of going into an Arab country and becoming the occupiers."

Comment: And then Powell went to the UN and told blatant lies in order to justify the invasion.

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Cheney "Fixes" Libby, Cons America and Thwarts Justice

William Hughes
Baltimore IMC
2007-07-08 10:08:00

Lewis "Scooter" Libby is not going to a federal prison for 30 months, or even for one day. His boss, Vice President Dick Cheney, made sure of that. U.S. District Court Judge, the Hon. Reggie B. Walton, had ruled that the Neocon, a crony of another prime architect of the Iraqi War, Paul Wolfowitz, deserved serious jail time for lying to a Grand Jury and the FBI. (1) The purpose of Libby's crimes was to cover up Cheney's scheme to smear the Iraqi War critic, Ambassador Joe Wilson. Cheney nodded and President George W. Bush winked -- Libby's prison time was commuted. What a sordid business! This is the same Bush-Cheney Gang that lied the country into the Iraqi War. (2) They decreed, without just cause, that a sovereign nation of 27 million souls should die! Over 655,000 of its citizens have perished. (3) As of today, that unlawful conflict has also cost the lives of 3601 brave Americans troops. Now, the gang's kingpin, Bush, insists that a 30 month prison sentence for one of its lying lackeys, Libby, is "excessive." What an obscenity!

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Propaganda Alert! Republican rebellion over Iraq escalates

Andrew Ward
Financial Times
2007-07-09 03:23:00

The Republican rebellion against the war in Iraq widened over the weekend as more of the party's senators voiced dissent from President George W. Bush's strategy.

Republican unity on Iraq has shattered in recent weeks, amid mounting pessimism about the ability of US forces to bring stability to the country.

Comment: It should be clear by now to anyone with more than a couple of functioning brain cells that bringing 'stability to the country' was never part of the plan.

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Hillary's Bizarre History of the Iraq War: Blame the Puppet

Saul Landau
2007-07-08 22:28:00

Hillary Clinton blamed the Iraqi government for failure to make progress. "The American military has succeeded," she declared to a stunned public. "They got rid of Saddam Hussein, they gave the Iraqis a chance for free and fair elections. It is the Iraqi government which has failed to make the tough decisions that are important for their own people," she said, unable to finish her sentence because of a chorus of boos. ("Take Back America" conference, June 13, Washington, DC) The other leading candidates (Obama and Edwards) blamed Bush and stood strongly for rapid withdrawal of US troops

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Those So-Called Oil Contracts in Iraq

2007-07-08 22:18:00

So-called "oil contracts" have been on the table of the Iraqi Parliament for months, and the fluff of lies printed about them in U..S. media is nauseating.

Every report I have been able to find in the general media has been long on inferences and short on facts. The result is that the average American knows nothing about them, and even those of us who try to follow important policy matters cannot find out more than the simple assertion that there are such things as Production Sharing Agreements, and that their signing is one of the "benchmarks" the US has put up as a requirement for our withdrawal of military forces.

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Middle East Madness
Two of the largest rivers of the region run through Iraq, so why are Iraqis desperate for lack of water?

Ali al-Fadhily
2007-07-09 17:46:00

The average household in Iraq now gets two hours of electricity a day. About 70 percent of Iraqis have no access to safe drinking water, and only 19 percent have sewage access, according to the World Health Organisation.

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Layla Anwar: Short Bedtime Stories...

Layla Anwar
An Arab Woman Blues
2007-07-08 14:52:00

Iraqi female artist, Yaqeen Al-Dulaimi

I would have really liked to sing you a bedtime lullaby. Alas, it is simply not possible. And in most likelihood, my voice will keep you very awake. Surely, I do not want to be a cause for your insomnia.

So am offering you a few short stories to lull you into unconsciousness, into a deep catatonic sleep...(not that you really need it.) But just in case you are losing sleep over the ongoing Iraqi genocide.

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Tearing Down the Ghetto Walls

Tony Sayegh
Palestinian Pundit
2007-07-09 14:30:00

Yesterday I listened to Dr. Mona El-Farra from Gaza speak in person about the abysmal human conditions in the Gaza Strip as a result of the genocidal total blockade which has been in effect for more than a year now. This blockade is entering a more intensified and dangerous phase, since in addition to USrael, the EU, most Arab regimes and in particular Egypt, the Palestinian Karzai is now aggressively urging the continued closure of the Rafah crossing which is the only outlet the Gaza Strip has left to the outside world.

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Blackwater manager blamed for 2004 massacre of mercenaries in Fallujah

Joseph Neff
News & Observer
2007-07-09 14:14:00

When four Blackwater USA security guards were ambushed and massacred in Fallujah in 2004, graphic images showed the world exactly what happened: four men killed, their bodies burned and dragged through the streets. A chanting mob hung two mutilated corpses from a bridge.

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Israeli-Russian billionaire to unveil new party

2007-07-09 11:19:00

JERUSALEM - Israeli-Russian billionaire Arkady Gaydamak announced on Monday he was setting up a new political party with the aim of toppling Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's unpopular government.

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Iran media accused of trying to oust president

Robert Tait
The Guardian
2007-07-09 10:45:00

Allies of Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, have accused the media of trying to depose him in a "creeping coup", raising fears of a fresh clampdown on opposition newspapers and websites.

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The Loan Gunmen
Yen Falls to Record Low Against Euro

Agnes Lovasz and Kosuke Goto
2007-07-09 14:45:00

The yen fell to a record low against the euro as stocks in Asia and Europe climbed, luring Japanese investors to overseas assets.

The Japanese yen slid against the nine most-actively traded currencies as indexes of Australian and Hong Kong shares rose to all-time highs and a gauge of Thai equities was at its strongest in 10 years. National benchmarks of stocks gained in all 18 western European markets except Spain.

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Subprime Losses May Be $52 Billion, Credit Suisse Says

Neil Unmack and Sebastian Boyd
2007-07-09 10:38:00

Credit Suisse Group said losses for investors in bonds backed by U.S. subprime mortgages may total $52 billion, the low end of estimates as analysts try to determine the fallout from rising delinquency rates and foreclosures.

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The Crashing U.S. Economy Held Hostage

Richard Cook
Global Research
2007-07-07 09:53:00

Remember when the U.S. was the world's greatest industrial democracy? Barely thirty years ago the output of our producing economy and the skills of our workforce led the world.

What happened? It's hard to believe that in the space of a generation our character and capabilities just collapsed as, for example, did our steel and automobile industries and our family farming. What then are the causes of the decline?

Here's how I would put it today: our economy is on an artificial life-support system, a barely-breathing hostage in a lunatic asylum. That asylum is the U.S. and world financial systems which are on the verge of collapse.

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The Living Planet
California has driest 'rainy season' on record

Agence France-Presse
2007-07-09 15:06:00

Los Angeles suffered through the driest rainy season on record in 2007, marking the least amount of precipitation here in the 130 years rainfall has been measured, weather officials said Sunday.

There were just 8.15 centimeters (3.2 inches) of rain in Los Angeles between January 1 and June 30 -- barely a fifth of the annual average rainfall of 38.3 centimeters (15 inches). "This was the driest rain season ever in downtown Los Angeles and at many other locations in southwestern California," the National Weather Service said in a statement. Most California rains fall in the first half of the year, particularly between January and March. The National Weather Service began compiling precipitation statistics in 1877. Los Angeles residents saw very heavy rains from late 2005 into early 2006, but officials warned that water rationing is possible by next winter if drought conditions persist.

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Dozens of wildfires ravage West

Associated Press
2007-07-09 13:10:00

Overnight rain and cooler temperatures slowed a South Dakota wildfire, as other fires blackened the landscape in California, Utah, Nevada, Washington, Colorado, Montana and Oregon.


Many of the fires were started by lightning and fueled by dry conditions, made worse by a heat wave that sizzled across the western United States last week.

The South Dakota fire had raced out of a canyon, destroyed 27 houses and killed a homeowner who went back to try to save his belongings, a top fire official said early Monday.

The change in weather gave firefighters a chance to shore up their fire lines, though conditions could shift again for the worse, state wildland fire coordinator Joe Lowe told crews at a morning briefing held in light rain.

"This fire is not over yet," he cautioned. "This fire could come back to life again."

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UK: Tornado hits Flintshire, 'once in 80 year event'

Flintshire Standard
2007-07-09 12:05:00

Flintshire is experiencing the kind of freak weather seen only once in a lifetime, including a spectacular tornado.

©Rick Matthews
A tornado over the Mostyn/Ffynnongroyw area at noon on July 8.

This photograph - taken by Leader photographer Rick Matthews from Hilbre Island - shows the tornado over the Mostyn/Ffynnongroyw area at noon yesterday (July 8).

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2 billion Chinese mice overrun lake area

2007-07-09 10:48:00

People living in communities surrounding a large shallow lake have been overrun by field mice after floodwaters drove the rodents out of islands on the lake, state media reported Monday.

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Australia: Climate change reduces Queensland's bat numbers

Queensland University of Technology
2007-07-09 10:07:00

A central eastern Queensland mine has turned up bat fossils which show climate change has had a negative impact on the state's bat population.

Queensland University of Technology (QUT) PhD student Sandrine Martinez is currently sifting through what is the largest and best record of the state's southern most bat population from the late Pleistocene Epoch (beginning two million years ago and ending approximately 10,000 years ago).

The fossil deposits were uncovered by mining operations at Mt Etna, near Rockhampton.

They contain a succession of bat remains ranging from the late Pleistocene Epoch to the present and span the transition from full tropical rainforest habitats to the more arid environment that currently characterises the Mt Etna region.

Ms Martinez will compare information obtained from fossil data to the bat communities that still occur in the Mt Etna caves.

"What I've found so far is an overall decrease in species richness - today the Mt Etna caves are inhabited by five species of bat (excluding fruit bats) while in the late Pleistocene there were at least eight," Ms Martinez said.

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Some 100 dead as floods hit China

RIA Novosti
2007-07-09 09:03:00

At least 94 people have died and 25 have been reported missing as the result of flooding in seven Chinese provinces, the Xinhua news agency said Monday.

More than 16 million people live in the affected areas, and authorities have evacuated more than 500,000. The western provinces of Jiangsu, Anhui, Henan, Hubei, Sichuan, Chongqing and Shaanxi were hit hardest.

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Health & Wellness
Flashback: Parkinson's Disease: Nicotine Could Help; Pesticides Harm

Science Daily
2007-04-06 18:13:00

The Parkinson's Institute recently announced new findings concerning the role of environmental factors in the development of Parkinson's disease.

Highlights of the research include:

The role of pesticides (eg. Paraquat and Dieldrin) as potential risk factors for Parkinson's disease, a role suggested by both epidemiological statistics and laboratory evidence.

The threat of toxic agents to damage neurons by causing the accumulation of harmful proteins.

Intraneuronal protein aggregates as markers of Parkinson's pathology, based on work carried out at The Parkinson's Institute indicating that these aggregates could be formed as a consequence of toxic exposure.

The importance of targeting a specific protein, alpha-synuclein, in order to achieve neuroprotection in Parkinson's
The role of inflammation in the development of Parkinson's disease and the possibility that anti-inflammatory drugs could be beneficial to patients.

The possibility that nicotine may act as a neuroprotective agent.

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Flashback: Researchers Light Up for Nicotine, the Wonder Drug

Marty Graham
2007-06-21 08:07:00

Smoking may be bad for you, but researchers and biotech companies are quietly developing pharmaceuticals that are decidedly good for brains, bowels, blood vessels and even immune systems -- and they're inspired by tobacco's deadly active ingredient: nicotine.

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Study finds smoking wards off Parkinson's disease

2007-07-09 17:43:00

There is more evidence to back up a long-standing theory that smokers are less likely to develop Parkinson's disease than people who do not use tobacco products, researchers reported on Monday.

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Three Perth children killed by flu-bacteria combo

2007-07-08 16:04:00

Three Perth children who died within 24 hours of falling ill had contracted a combination of a flu strain and a pneumonia-causing bacterial infection, the West Australian Health Department says.

The department's Communicable Disease Control director Dr Paul Van Buynder said all three children were under the age of five.

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Pioneering treatment for brain cancer gets Swiss approval

2007-07-09 13:58:00

LONDON - An experimental treatment for brain cancer has won approval for commercial use in Switzerland, its London-listed US maker, Northwest Biotherapeutics, Inc., announced on Monday.

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Pumpkin: A fairytale end to insulin injections?

2007-07-09 10:01:00

Compounds found in pumpkin could potentially replace or at least drastically reduce the daily insulin injections that so many diabetics currently have to endure. Recent research reveals that pumpkin extract promotes regeneration of damaged pancreatic cells in diabetic rats, boosting levels of insulin-producing beta cells and insulin in the blood, reports Lisa Richards in Chemistry & Industry, the magazine of the SCI.

A group, led by Tao Xia of the East China Normal University, found that diabetic rats fed the extract had only 5% less plasma insulin and 8% fewer insulin-positive (beta) cells compared to normal healthy rats (Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, 87(9) 1753-7 2007).

Xia says: 'pumpkin extract is potentially a very good product for pre-diabetic persons, as well as those who have already developed diabetes.' He adds that although insulin injections will probably always be necessary for these patients, pumpkin extract could drastically reduce the amount of insulin they need to take.

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Science & Technology
NASA's Oft-Delayed Asteroid Mission Pushed to September

Tariq Malik
2007-07-08 09:26:00

For the third time in two days, NASA postponed the launch of its asteroid-bound Dawn probe Saturday, with liftoff now slated for no earlier than September.

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New Shock Absorbent Material - Heralded As Super Hero Suit

Lain S. Bruce
Sunday Herald
2007-07-09 00:32:00

Its rock-hard surface can take a full-on assault from a baseball bat, yet remains flexible enough to allow you to kick, leap and roll with perfect ease. Crafted from cutting-edge science, its unique molecular structure means that while providing armoured protection against crude concrete and even barbed wire, it remains light enough to allow you to run at high speed.

It sounds like the stuff of Batman comics - but the superhero suit is here.

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Our Haunted Planet
30 years later: new details on UFO case released

Tom Bourton
BBC Wales news website
2007-07-05 08:17:00

Thirty years ago, a corner of south west Wales was caught up in a "flap" - a wave of sightings in an area - that became known as The Broad Haven Triangle.

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Don't Panic! Lighten Up!
Paris Tourist Day: Parisians urged to be nice

Adam Sage
The Times
2007-07-09 10:10:00

The tourist lost near the Place de l'Opéra in Paris asked a newspaper vendor for help. "Where's Starbucks?" she said in halting English.

"No idea," he replied in French with a bad-tempered shrug - even though he knew perfectly well that the nearest Starbucks coffee shop was only 50 metres away.

Today, however, his attitude will be different - or so tourist officials hope.

They are launching the first Paris Tourist Day, when they will encourage residents of the French capital to be polite, welcoming and helpful, at least for 24 hours.

Hundreds of thousands of brochures will be distributed to waiters, taxi drivers and other professionals calling on them to shed their long-standing reputation for arrogance and brusqueness. The Paris Tourist Office has also produced a charter in French and English with what it describes as commitments for Parisians and holidaymakers.

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Ninety-year-old Italian climbs 3,000-meter mountain, sets record

RIA Novosti
2007-07-09 09:04:00

Italian Piero Paci, who turns 90 this October, has successfully climbed a 3,000-meter (9,000-foot) mountain, setting a Guinness record, witnesses said.

The elderly mountaineer reached the top of Gran Sasso, at an altitude of 2,914 meters (8,742 feet), without assistance. His son and daughter accompanied him during the climb.

Another long-lived Italian, Giovanni Viglione, 100, recently took a test for a new driver's license. He also studies at a local university where he enjoys taking watercolor classes.

A third, still-employed 100-year-old, asked about the secret of his longevity, said: "I get up at 6:00 a.m. every morning, drink a glass of red wine and go to work. When I feel hungry, I eat a big portion of pasta that my daughter-in-law cooks for me. "

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7 7 7 7 7

Associated Press
2007-07-09 00:13:00

CHIPPEWA FALLS, Wis. - Jack Allen Falkner is one lucky baby.

The son of Dan and Leslie Falkner was born July 7, 2007, considered by many the luckiest day of the century.

But Jack's luck didn't stop there. The infant weighed in at 7 pounds, 7 ounces, at St. Joseph's Hospital in Chippewa Falls.

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Them Dogs are Barking: German man's smelly feet trigger police raid

2007-07-08 21:06:00

German police broke into a darkened flat fearing they would find a dead body after neighbours complained of a nasty smell seeping out onto the staircase.

The shutters of the apartment had been closed for more than a week and the post-box was filled with uncollected mail.

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