Sunday, September 14, 2008



Tree Hugger -
Following on the heels of a recently published study in the journal Nature Geoscience, which estimated that Arctic permafrost could hold 60% more organic carbon than previously thought, a team of scientists from Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation has found that the planet's permafrost layers -- comprising an area that covers a fifth of Earth's land mass -- store twice as much methane and carbon dioxide as previously believed. . . Release of even a fraction could greatly increase future temperature rise While he said it was too early to start making dire predictions about future melting rates, Pep Canadell, a CSIRO atmospheric scientist who co-authored the paper, warned that: “With temperatures in the higher latitudes estimated to rise by as much as eight degrees by the end of this century, the world could experience a major melt of large tracts of permafrost in Canada, Russia, Alaska, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Greenland”.


SF Chronicle
- Third-party political activist Peter Camejo, a perennial candidate for state and national office who helped pioneer the financial market niche of socially responsible investments, died Saturday. He was 68. Mr. Camejo, who had been battling a recurrence of lymphoma, died at home in Folsom (Sacramento County). He helped found the California Green Party in 1991 and ran three times for governor of California. He also ran as independent Ralph Nader's vice presidential running mate in the 2004 presidential election in which President Bush won a second term. In 1976 he ran for president as the Socialist Workers Party candidate. Mr. Camejo described himself as a watermelon - red on the inside, green on the outside



Wisconsin State Journal
- Saying illegal Wisconsin votes could sway the presidential election, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen has sued the state elections agency to force ineligible voters off the rolls. But election experts warned that if the Justice Department lawsuit is successful, eligible voters could be disenfranchised and the state could face a post-election ballot-counting frenzy similar to Florida's after the 2000 presidential race. "You shouldn't penalize the voter because you've got mistakes in your database," said Dan Tokaji, an election law expert at Ohio State University. "That's the absolute worst thing to do." The suit filed in Dane County Circuit Court on Wednesday is believed to be the only one of its kind in the country, according to Tokaji and other national election experts.


Daily Mail, UK - David Miliband was subjected to an astonishing four-letter tirade from his Russian counterpart at the height of the Georgia crisis. The Foreign Secretary received the undiplomatic tongue-lashing over the telephone after expressing the EU's anger with the Kremlin. . . At one point Sergei Lavrov, the colourful Russian foreign minister, became so incensed that he reportedly barked: 'Who the f*** are you to lecture me?' Mr Lavrov, who is seen as the fearsome face of Russia's new aggressive foreign policy, objected to what he believed was Mr Miliband's condescending tone. He used full-strength industrial language to suggest to the Foreign Secretary that he knew little, if anything, of Russia's history - perhaps unaware that Mr Miliband's grandfather Samuel served in the Red Army and his father Ralph was a leading Marxist theoretician. Such was the repeated use of the F-word that it was difficult to draft a readable note of the exchange, according to one insider who has seen the transcript. A Whitehall source said: 'It was effing this and effing that. It was not what you would call diplomatic language. It was rather shocking."

Leaders of the Association of Professional Flight Attendants, which represents some 19,000 workers including American Airlines flight attendants, asked American Airline's management this week to consider adding filters to its in-flight Wi-Fi access to prevent passengers from viewing porn and other inappropriate Web sites while in-flight. A union representative told Bloomberg News that attendants and passengers have raised "a lot of complaints" over the issue. American Airlines is one of several airlines testing in-flight Internet access as a way to lure more passengers. American has been offering the service on a limited basis since August 20th on some flights between New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, and between New York and Miami. The cost of the service on cross-country flights is $12.95, and it's $9.95 on the New York to Miami route. . . Given that people are packed onto planes literally elbow to elbow, it's often hard not to at least glance at the laptop screen of the person sitting next to you. But airlines have not banned people from reading pornographic magazines or watching their own DVDs on flights. And it's just as easy for someone to view a DVD of an adult video on a laptop or flip through Hustler as it is to surf porn Web sites.


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