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Citigroup Warns Customers It May Refuse To Allow Withdrawals "Effective April 1, 2010, we reserve the right to require (7) days advance notice before permitting a withdrawal from all checking accounts. While we do not currently exercise this right and have not exercised it in the past, we are required by law to notify you of this change," Citigroup said on statements received by customers all over the country. (Business Insider)
Accused Christmas Bomber Listened to Music, Slept "Well, I mean, it was a threat, of course, it was a threat because initially, he was trying to blow up the plane but he didn't succeed. I mainly treat him this way because of how he reacted towards what he was doing. And what his actions told me on the plane was that he was in over his head, and that he didn't exactly know what he was doing would entail." (National Public Radio)
Citigroup Stock Proving Irresistible to Hedge Funds “The sum of the parts is worth less than each individual part,” said Garnick. “It is easier for investors to assign value to a company if it is broken up into its many component parts. In this market environment people are starting to reward single business unit companies.” (Bloomberg)
Global Weirding Is Here Therefore, climate experts can’t leave themselves vulnerable by citing non-peer-reviewed research or failing to respond to legitimate questions, some of which happened with both the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. (New York Times)
In Supreme Court Ruling on Campaign Finance, the Public Dissents Memo to the Supreme Court: President Obama isn’t the only one who’s annoyed.
Obama raised eyebrows at his State of the Union address last month by criticizing the high court’s ruling throwing out limits on corporate spending in political campaigns. Turns out he’s got company: Our latest ABC News/Washington Post poll finds that 80 percent of Americans likewise oppose the ruling, including 65 percent who “strongly” oppose it, an unusually high intensity of sentiment.
Seventy-two percent, moreover, support the idea of a legislative workaround to try to reinstate the limits the court lifted.
The bipartisan nature of these views is striking in these largely partisan times. The court’s ruling is opposed, respectively, by 76, 81 and 85 percent of Republicans, independents and Democrats; and by 73, 85 and 86 percent of conservatives, moderates and liberals. Majorities in all these groups, ranging from 58 to 73 percent, not only oppose the ruling but feel strongly about it. (ABC)
Another IPCC Error: Antarctic Sea Ice Increase Underestimated by 50% Several errors have been recently uncovered in the 4th Assessment Report (AR4) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). These include problems with Himalayan glaciers, African agriculture, Amazon rainforests, Dutch geography, and attribution of damages from extreme weather events. More seem to turn up daily. Most of these errors stem from the IPCC’s reliance on non-peer reviewed sources. - This rate of increase is nearly twice as great as the value given in the AR4 (from its non-peer-reviewed source).
So, the peer reviewed literature, both extant at the time of the AR4 as well as published since the release of the AR4, shows that there has been a significant increase in the extent of sea ice around Antarctica since the time of the first satellite observations observed in the late 1970s. And yet the AR4 somehow “assessed” the evidence and determined not only that the increase was only half the rate established in the peer-reviewed literature, but also that it was statistically insignificant as well. And thus, the increase in sea ice in the Antarctic was downplayed in preference to highlighting the observed decline in sea ice in the Arctic.
It is little wonder why, considering that the AR4 found that “Sea ice is projected to shrink in both the Arctic and Antarctic under all SRES scenarios.” (World Climate Report)
Cannabis Science Announces Preliminary Results of Its Survey of Cannabis Use By Veterans and Others With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) "Listen to What Our Veterans Are Telling Us" Cannabis Science Inc. (NASD OTCBB: CBIS), an emerging pharmaceutical cannabis company, is reviewing interim results of its survey from over 1400 people, US military veterans and others who responded to our PTSD survey. The survey is still available for a limited time online on the www.cannabisscience.com website for all those who still wish to participate.
The survey was designed and conducted by Mitch Earleywine, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology at the State University of New York (Albany). Dr Earleywine is also a member of the Cannabis Science Inc. Scientific Advisory Board. The survey results will be made public as soon as the study has been completed.
Dr. Robert Melamede, Cannabis Science President and CEO, observed, "It is clear that many veterans are already using herbal cannabis to self-medicate to relieve the symptoms of PTSD. Consequently, there is a clear need for standardized, FDA approved, oral cannabis products which can, and should be, provided to veterans and others who can benefit from its use. Medical cannabis has far fewer and milder side effects than most currently prescribed pharmaceutical products do. We are working hard to have one or more products ready for FDA clinical trials as soon as possible." (Cannabis Science)
Climategate U-turn as scientist at centre of row admits: There has been no global warming since 1995 Data for vital 'hockey stick graph' has gone missing ~ There has been no global warming since 1995 ~ Warming periods have happened before ~ but NOT due to man-made changes - The academic at the centre of the 'Climategate' affair, whose raw data is crucial to the theory of climate change, has admitted that he has trouble 'keeping track' of the information.
Colleagues say that the reason Professor Phil Jones has refused Freedom of Information requests is that he may have actually lost the relevant papers.
Professor Jones told the BBC yesterday there was truth in the observations of colleagues that he lacked organisational skills, that his office was swamped with piles of paper and that his record keeping is 'not as good as it should be'.
The data is crucial to the famous 'hockey stick graph' used by climate change advocates to support the theory. - Professor Jones departed from this consensus when he said: 'There is much debate over whether the Medieval Warm Period was global in extent or not. The MWP is most clearly expressed in parts of North America, the North Atlantic and Europe and parts of Asia.
'For it to be global in extent, the MWP would need to be seen clearly in more records from the tropical regions and the Southern hemisphere. There are very few palaeoclimatic records for these latter two regions.
'Of course, if the MWP was shown to be global in extent and as warm or warmer than today, then obviously the late 20th Century warmth would not be unprecedented. On the other hand, if the MWP was global, but was less warm than today, then the current warmth would be unprecedented.' (UK Daily Mail)
Obama Making Plans to Use Executive Power “We are reviewing a list of presidential executive orders and directives to get the job done across a front of issues,” said Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff. - The use of executive authority during times of legislative inertia is hardly new; former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush turned to such powers at various moments in their presidencies, and Mr. Emanuel was in the thick of carrying out the strategy during his days as a top official in the Clinton White House. (New York Times)
Lobbyists for cap and trade face daunting task The U.S. Senate's stalled climate bill is getting a last big push from an unlikely ally -- a group of energy companies who say a carbon market will help them get financing for the next generation of energy production. (Reuters)
Has the IPCC outlived its usefulness? With Elisabeth Rosenthal’s page-one story in the New York Times yesterday, it’s possible that the American press may finally start to examine the controversies that have erupted over the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and its head, Rajendra Pachauri. One can only hope. (CE Journal)
Attempted bombing of Flight 253: Terror Suspect Kept Visa to Avoid Tipping off Larger Investigation The State Department didn't revoke the visa of foiled terrorism suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab because federal counterterrorism officials had begged off revocation, a top State Department official revealed Wednesday.
Patrick F. Kennedy, an undersecretary for management at the State Department, said Abdulmutallab's visa wasn't taken away because intelligence officials asked his agency not to deny a visa to the suspected terrorist over concerns that a denial would've foiled a larger investigation into al-Qaida threats against the United States. (Global Research)
Skeptics Find Fault With U.N. Climate Panel “This is not about whether this is a good person or a good cause; it’s about the integrity of the scientific process,” Dr. Pielke said, adding: “This has become so polarized, it’s like you must be in cahoots with the bad guys if you are at all negative about Pachauri.” (New York Times)
Opinion: Deep Oil, Deep Power and Deep Pockets Is oil running out or not and is Peak Oil a true phenomenon? In this article I examine the dubious reasons for the promotion of The Peak Oil myth and the interplay between power, profit and money. - Evidence for the Russia Oil Formation Theory also abounds. Off the coast of New Orleans -- in the South Eugene oil fields is an example. Several of these wells -- in 300 ft of water -- were found to be refilling themselves with oil. Further investigation showed that they were refilling from below and not from the sides or above. (Digital Journal)
Secret summit of top bankers World's top bankers fly in to meet at secret location trouble on the horizon - Organised by the Bank for International Settlements last year, the two-day talks are shrouded in secrecy with high-level security believed to have been invoked by law enforcement agencies. (News.au.com)
MSP airport security: Whole-body scanners are likely, but not everyone's on board Congressional hearings continued Wednesday into a dramatic overhaul of the nation's airport security system, which could see the metal detectors at airports across the country replaced by far more costly whole-body imaging scanners designed to see below clothing and which many say would have stopped the attempted Christmas Day underwear bomber before he stepped onto a plane (Minn Post)
Driver’s Licenses for the Internet? -- Today’s idea: Let’s have “driver’s licenses” for the Internet to counter online fraud, hackers and espionage, a Microsoft executive suggests. Maybe on your busy junket to the World Economic Forum in Davos last week you missed the panel where Craig Mundie, Microsoft’s chief research and technology officer, offered up the Internet licensing proposal above. Barbara Kiviat of the Curious Capitalist blog was there, and summarizes the idea thusly:
What Mundie is proposing is to impose authentication. He draws an analogy to automobile use. If you want to drive a car, you have to have a license (not to mention an inspection, insurance, etc.). If you do something bad with that car, like break a law, there is the chance that you will lose your license and be prevented from driving in the future. In other words, there is a legal and social process for imposing discipline. Mundie imagines three tiers of Internet I.D.: one for people, one for machines and one for programs (which often act as proxies for the other two). (New York Times)
A "Balanced Approach" to Drug Control? Despite trumpeting a "balanced and comprehensive drug strategy," President Obama's White House Drug Czar's office announced this week that it is continuing the nearly two-to-one budget disparity that heavily favors spending on law enforcement and punishment over public health strategies like treatment and prevention. (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition)
Intel chief: Al-Qaida likely to attempt attack National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair said with changes made since the Dec. 25 attack, U.S. intelligence would he able to identify and stop someone like the Detroit bomber before he got on the plane. But he warned a more careful and skilled would-be terrorist might not be detected. (Comcast)
Obama grows the drug war, with enforcement a clear priority The budget places America's drug war spending at $15.5 billion for fiscal year 2011; an increase of 3.5 percent over FY 2010. That figure reflects a 5.2 percent increase in overall enforcement funding, growing from $9.7 billion in FY 2010 to $9.9 billion in FY 2011. Addiction treatment and preventative measures, however, are budgeted at $5.6 billion for FY 2011, an increase from $5.2 billion in FY 2010. (The Raw Story)
US cyber security 'under threat' Malicious cyber activity is occurring on an unprecedented scale with extraordinary sophistication." That is what America's top intelligence official, Dennis Blair has told the US congress. (UK Channel 4)
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