Barack Obama acknowledged today that time had run out to secure a legally binding climate deal at the Copenhagen summit in December and threw his support behind plans to delay a formal pact until next year at the earliest.
During a hastily convened meeting in Singapore, the US president supported a Danish plan to salvage something from next month's meeting by aiming to make it a first-stage series of commitments rather than an all-encompassing protocol.
The awarding of development rights over the huge West Qurna oilfield in southern Iraq to Exxon-Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell last Thursday once again underscores the criminal character of the continuing US-led occupation. As the direct result of the Iraq war, major American and other transnational energy conglomerates are now gaining control over some the largest oilfields in the world.
From the independentAid commitment dropped from Queen's Speech
Brown's pledge to prevent future governments cutting overseas aid will appear as a draft bill only
By Jane Merrick and Brian Brady
By Jane Merrick and Brian Brady
Power is measured by four criteria: the number of people whom the person exerts power over; the financial resources that the person controls, with a country’s gross domestic product used for heads of state; the number of spheres in which the person is influential; and the extent to which the person exercises his power.
Every phone call, text message, email and website visit made by Britons is to be stored for a year and will be available for monitoring by government bodies.
All telecoms companies and internet service providers will be required by British law to keep a record of every customer's personal communications, showing who they have contacted, when and where, as well as the websites they have visited.
Despite public opposition, 653 public bodies will have access to the data, including police, local councils, the ambulance service, fire authorities and even prison governors.
John Pilger: Peace awards & Obama's wars .....
US President Barack Obama, winner of the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, is planning another war to add to his impressive record.
In Afghanistan, his agents routinely extinguish wedding parties, farmers and construction workers with weapons such as the innovative Hellfire missile, which sucks the air out of your lungs.
The United Nations has said 338,000 Afghan infants are dying under the Obama-led alliance, which permits only US$29 per head annually to be spent on medical care.
What followed was the humiliation of Bryan and his literal interpretation of the Bible as he sought to argue the historical truth of Genesis. That Adam and Eve were really the first humans to walk the Earth just 6000 years ago; that 2300 years before Christ, all living things - apart from those saved by Noah - were wiped from the planet, and that Jonah was swallowed by a big fish.
From my perspective, Bryan's most damning words were: ''I believe in creation as there told, and if I am not able to explain it, I will accept it."
from Crikey .....
Rupert Murdoch has had a lot to say lately about the internet, and how a modern media mogul might milk it for corporate gain.
Paywalls appear to be a key to the Sun King's strategic thinking, restrictions around content to squeeze micro-payments from an eager readership. We already have one right here at News Corp, Murdoch enthuses.
"We have it already with the Wall Street Journal. We have a wall, but it's not right to the ceiling. You can get, usually, the first paragraph from any story -- but if you're not a paying subscriber to WSJ.com all you get is a paragraph and a subscription form."
From the first moment it was clear that the decisive test would come in the battle of the settlements.
It may seem that this is a marginal matter. If peace is to be achieved within two years, as Obama's people assure us, why worry about another few houses in the settlements that will be dismantled anyway? So there will be a few thousand settlers more to resettle. Big deal.
But the freezing of the settlements has an importance far beyond its practical effect. To return to the metaphor of the Palestinian lawyer: "We are negotiating the division of a pizza, and in the meantime, Israel is eating the pizza."
Our own little hillary, Maxine McKew has been at it again. On this week's Q&A, Miss rata-tat-tat had lots of words but little to say .... In one of the greatest cons perpetrated on the Australian electorate, Maxine was credited with having knocked-off old rattus in the last feral election .... truth is, of course, that even Hannibal Lecter could have blitzed the little fella; Maxine was just collecting the prize on behalf of the party .....
America celebrates Columbus Day, even though Columbus and American settlers killed, enslaved and pushed indigenous peoples off land they lived on. Tragically, indigenous peoples have been nearly wiped out of existence and pushed to the furthest margins of our culture that revels in amnesia. Main St., mainstream American culture does not expect Native Americans to celebrate Columbus, nor care nor know nor imagine if they do or not. Native Americans are not a demographic population Hallmark cares to account for.
THE Chaser funnyman Julian Morrow has urged the ABC not to give in to the ''short-term hysteria of media outrage'' because it risks damaging its independence and integrity.
Delivering the Andrew Olle Media Lecture last night, Morrow said he was not sorry for people offended by the ''make a realistic wish'' sketch that led to the comedy group's being taken off air for two weeks.