Enron executives Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling found guilty

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 23-03-2019

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A jury in Houston found Former Enron Corp. CEOs Kenneth L. Lay and Jeffrey K. Skilling guilty of 6 kinds of white-collar crime on May 25. Lay was convicted of all ten counts against him, while Skilling was convicted of only nineteen of the charged twenty-eight counts. The variety of charges on which both men were convicted was astonishing; conspiracy, wire fraud, false statements to banks and auditors, and others. Both men now face many years in prison.

Outside the courtroom, Skilling continued to proclaim his innocence. “Obviously, I’m disappointed, but that’s the way the system works,” Skilling said after the verdict. He is expected to appeal. Lay did not immediately speak to reporters outside the courtroom.

The verdict was reached on the sixth day of deliberations after a four-month-long trial and brings to a close the first of the wave of accounting scandals earlier in the decade. The verdict also represents another major victory for the government, which has successfully prosecuted a number of high-profile executives involved in accounting scandals, as well as obtained sixteen guilty pleas from former Enron executives.

Sentencing has been set for September 11, 2006. U.S. District Judge Sim Lake ordered Lay to post a $5 million bond and surrender his passport before leaving the courtroom.

Wikinews investigates Wikipedia usage by U.S. Senate staff members

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 23-03-2019

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Staff members of the offices of United States Senators, using Senate-linked IP addresses, have been editing Wikipedia, a free online encyclopedia that allows its users to edit its content. In some cases, they have removed facts from the articles.

Using the public history of edits on Wikipedia, Wikinews reporters collected every Senate IP address from which Wikipedia edits had been made as of February 3, then examined where the IPs came from and the edits that were made from computers connected at those addresses. IP, or Internet Protocol, addresses are unique numbers electronic devices use to communicate with each other on an individual basis.

The investigation showed the vast majority of edits from Senate IPs were beneficial and helpful to Wikipedia. Examples include the creation of the articles on Click Back America, which organizes students to promote microfinance in the developing world, and Washington’s Tomb, which was designed to hold the body of first U.S. President George Washington within the White House Capitol building; and significantly expanding the article on closed sessions of the United States Senate in November. Dozens of small corrections have been made to grammar, spelling, or small facts — many of them related to the Senate.

Senators’ staff members have sometimes had to fight to correct inaccuracies. An edit to Jay Rockefeller‘s article by his staff removed information which may have been biased or untrue. The staff member who edited said, “Apologies, I was new to using Wikipedia, and I didn’t fully realize the workings of the website,” after other users continuously reinserted the information. The staffer removed the suspect paragraphs 12 times until another Wikipedia user finally removed the information. Four days later, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales got involved.

The Senators’ offices were contacted about this article, but no response was received before press time.

Staffers in the offices of Senator Joe Biden, who, according to his changed Wikipedia biography, “announced in mid-June 2005 that he will seek the Democratic Presidential nomination in 2008 if he believes his message and vision for the country resonate with Americans,” removed a paragraph about a 1996 plagiarism scandal, as well as changing the section regarding a possible 2008 candidacy to read very positively. A second staffer toned down and removed information about other plagiarism issues as well. The same addresses from Biden’s office edited the article on Hamas, which has recently won a majority in the Palestinian Legislative Council, and is listed as a terrorist organization by Australia, Canada, the European Union, Israel, and the United States, to give its first two paragraphs a more biased stance by removing information about its social welfare programs.

References, citations, and descriptions of Conrad Burns’ use of the word “ragheads” were removed from Wikipedia’s article, as was mention of legislation, co-sponsored by Burns, that would reduce Native American tribal sovereignty. These were replaced by a paragraph titled “A Voice for the Farmer”. The citations supported the discussion of Senator Burns’s legislative record regarding tribal sovereignty.

The staffers of Senator Norm Coleman changed a description of Coleman as a liberal Democrat in college to an “activist Democrat,” and then to “an active college student.” They removed references to Coleman’s voting record during his first year of Congress, which lined up with President Bush 98% of the time, which cited Congressional Quarterly. They also removed a reference to Coleman being persuaded by Karl Rove to run for senator instead of governor in 2002.

“When you put ‘edia’ in there, it makes it sound as if this is a benign, objective piece of information,” said Erich Mische, Senator Coleman’s Chief of Staff, to the Associated Press. Mr. Mische admitted the Senator’s office had made the edits, and he would take responsibility for removal of the sentence about the voting record. “That probably should have stayed in there.”

“It appears to be a major rewrite of the article to make it more favorable. If they’re trying to edit in such a way to change the public record, that’s a problem,” Jimmy Wales said to the Associated Press about the incident.

According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press, “Coleman’s decision to run for senator, rather than governor, was sealed during a walk with President Bush in the White House’s Rose Garden,” rather than Karl Rove. Rove had actually persuaded the former House majority leader of Minnesota and current governor, Tim Pawlenty, not to challenge Norm Coleman in the Senate elections. Still, other portions of the edit removed references to Karl Rove entirely, and their citations, while accentuating the positive side of several issues, including changing “a budget bill that cut funding from a number of programs” to “a deficit-reduction bill.”

The California block of Senate IP addresses made several edits to the Dianne Feinstein article, removing reference to her membership in the Trilateral Commission and to her net worth, with husband Richard C. Blum, but also adding an extensive list of awards.

Even more problematic than the edits to the article about Dianne Feinstein, however, were those made to the article about her husband. References to a 1992 fine for failing to disclose Mr. Blum had guaranteed her campaign loans were removed, along with citations, and a paragraph regarding a conflict of interest debate from 1997 when Mr. Blum had invested millions of dollars in Chinese businesses when Ms. Feinstein was campaigning in the Senate to lift trade sanctions against the country. Mr. Blum later announced he would donate all profits from his Chinese investments to charity.

The staffers of Senator Tom Harkin removed a paragraph relating to Harkin’s having falsely claimed to have flown combat missions over North Vietnam, and his subsequent recantation after inquiries by the Wall Street Journal and Barry Goldwater. Another paragraph removed related to a supposed pro-Israeli stance.

Wikinews reporters also discovered that a handful of miscellaneous vandalism edits had been made to some Senators’ articles. Vandalized articles included those of Tom Coburn and Harry Reid. The edits to Reid’s were made three times, while the Coburn vandalism was made two times, after it had been restored to a prior version. An edit to an article about a controversy over Senator Rick Santorum’s statements about Constitutional rights to privacy with regards to sexual acts, seemingly coming from Rick Santorum’s staff members, removed a reference to an effort to redefine Santorum’s last name as a neologism meaning “the frothy mixture of lube and fecal matter that is sometimes the byproduct of anal sex.”

President Bush to limit congressional oversight in PATRIOT amendment act

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 22-03-2019

Sunday, April 2, 2006

President Bush signed the “USA PATRIOT Act Additional Reauthorizing Amendments Act of 2006” into law. In the signing statement, Bush averred that he could withhold information about the administration’s controversial use of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act powers and National Security Letters if he deemed that they impaired foreign relations, national security, the deliberative processes of the Executive, or the performance of the Executive’s constitutional duties. Lawmakers and Legal experts have questioned the president’s authority to contravene the Congress’s intent in such a way.

The Patriot Act reauthorisation bill specifically mandates the Inspector General of the Department of Justice to audit the administration’s use of investigative authority granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and National Security Letters and requires these audits to be submitted for congressional review.

In the signing statement, President Bush wrote “The executive branch shall construe the provisions of H.R. 3199 that call for furnishing information to entities outside the executive branch, such as sections 106A and 119, in a manner consistent with the President’s constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch and to withhold information the disclosure of which could impair foreign relations, national security, the deliberative processes of the Executive, or the performance of the Executive’s constitutional duties.”

This follows on the heels of the signing of the congressional ban on torture issued in January of this year, when the President declared that he would view the interrogation limits in the context of his broader powers to protect national security. A senior white house official told a Boston Globe reporter that “Of course the president has the obligation to follow this law, [but] he also has the obligation to defend and protect the country as the commander in chief, and he will have to square those two responsibilities in each case.” The official added “We are not expecting that those two responsibilities will come into conflict, but it’s possible that they will.”

Lawmakers tried to get a handle on President Bush’s use of signing statements in 2003, by passing a Justice Department spending bill that required the department to inform Congress whenever the administration decided to ignore a legislative provision on constitutional grounds.

Bush signed the bill, but issued a statement asserting his right to ignore the notification requirement.

Elmwood Village Hotel proposal in Buffalo, N.Y. withdrawn

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 21-03-2019

Buffalo, N.Y. Hotel Proposal Controversy
Recent Developments
  • “120 year-old documents threaten development on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, November 21, 2006
  • “Proposal for Buffalo, N.Y. hotel reportedly dead: parcels for sale “by owner”” — Wikinews, November 16, 2006
  • “Contract to buy properties on site of Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal extended” — Wikinews, October 2, 2006
  • “Court date “as needed” for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal” — Wikinews, August 14, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing for lawsuit against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal rescheduled” — Wikinews, July 26, 2006
  • “Elmwood Village Hotel proposal in Buffalo, N.Y. withdrawn” — Wikinews, July 13, 2006
  • “Preliminary hearing against Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal delayed” — Wikinews, June 2, 2006
Original Story
  • “Hotel development proposal could displace Buffalo, NY business owners” — Wikinews, February 17, 2006

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Buffalo, New York —According to the developer Savarino Construction Services Corporation, the proposed Elmwood Village Hotel which would be placed on the corner of Elmwood and Forest Avenues in Buffalo, New York has been withdrawn from the city’s Planning Board and Common Council and will undergo a “do over”; however, Eva Hassett, Vice President of Savarino says that the proposal will be resubmitted, from scratch by the end of next week.

The hotel would require the demolition of at least five properties, 1109-1121 Elmwood and would cause the closure of several businesses. Already, two businesses, Skunk Tail Glass and Six Nations Native American Gift Shop have relocated, outside the Elmwood Strip. Don apparel, H.O.D. Tattoo and Mondo Video still remain on Elmwood; however, Mondo Video is planning on moving to a new location. The hotel will be 72 rooms and will cost at least 7 million dollars to build.

“We’re lovers, not fighters. Our energies should be spent on developing a really wonderful project, not wasted in court. We’ll start over with a clean slate and take as much time as necessary to hear people out and end up with a very positive project for the neighborhood,” said President of Savarino Construction, Sam Savarino.

The hotel will not undergo any major changes in its design says Savarino. “We would anticipate little if any physical change to the plans.” He also alleges that the issues with the hotel were not with the design or the proposal and also says that the hotel is still right for the intersection.

“The perceived problem was with the process, not the proposal itself. We believe this is the right thing to do on that corner,” added Savarino.

According to the Buffalo News, the projects resubmission is aimed to “shed the lawsuits” against the proposal. The Buffalo News also claims that the Common Council members are all still “in favor of the project.” The proposal was unanimously passed by the council on March 21, 2006.

Attorney Arthur J. Giacalone who represents the plaintiffs, Nancy Pollina and Patricia Morris, who operate Don Apparel (a vintage clothing and collectibles shop at 1119 Elmwood Avenue), Angeline Genovese and Evelyn Bencinich, owners of residences on Granger Place which abut the rear of the proposed site, Nina Freudenheim, a resident of nearby Penhurst Park, and Sandra Girage, the owner of a two-family residence on Forest Avenue less than a hundred feet from the proposed hotel’s sole entrance and exit driveway, says that the hotel proposal was “inappropriately rushed,” but some council members disagree. Defendants in the lawsuit against the hotel are, Buffalo’s Common Council and Planning Board, Mayor of Buffalo, Byron W. Brown, Savarino Construction Services Corporation, Hans J. Mobius and his son Hans S. Mobius owners of the properties at stake, Pano Georgiadis, owner of Pano’s Restaurant on Elmwood, and Cendant Corporation, the parent company of Wyndham Hotels, which will be, according to Savarino, the hotel operator. Attorney David State is representing the city, Planning Board, Mayor Byron Brown and the Common Council.

“I don’t think it was a rush job,” said Dominic J. Bonifacio Jr., the council’s Majority Leader.He also alleges that the only way to make “it [the hotel] a better project and ease the concerns of some neighbors would be to find a way to provide more parking.”

In an exclusive phone interview with Wikinews, Giacalone states that the lawsuit against the hotel and the city “will not be moved [withdrawn] unless the Common Council resins their [prior] decisions in passing the proposal.” Giacalone also says that Savarino has yet to submit any new plans for the proposal to the city. He also says that he “still plans to represent all plaintiffs” if they wish to continue with the suit and the use of his services.

Giacalone rescheduled the preliminary hearing which is “still in place” for July 27, 2006. When asked if the properties are still owned by Mobius, Giacalone replied “yes” and that according to attorney Bob Knoer, the Lawyer representing Hans Mobius, the owner of the properties that could be demolished, there is “no contract between Savarino” and that Mobius “plans to put the properties back on the market.” Mobius has not returned phone calls or e-mails and has not yet commented on the situation or the proposal itself. The city denies these claims.

In an exclusive phone interview by Wikinews, area councilman Joseph Golombek states that the reason for the resubmission of the proposal was due to “a mistake in the Planning process” and that none of the council members have “indicated that they have changed their opinions on the hotel” and still remain in favor of the project.

“I still think the Hotel is a good idea for that part of Elmwood. For Elmwood to stay strong and vibrant it must continue to grow and adapt to change. It is a different community than it was twenty years ago and will be different in another twenty years. The opponents of the Hotel have the opportunity to challenge it and are doing that. Even though I disagree with them I am glad there is a safety mechanism for people who disagree with government. We need to keep moving forward,” added Golombek.

Supporters of the hotel proposal are planning on holding a rally to support the new development. WNYmedia.net claims that the first rally will be held to support the hotel proposal on July 17, 2006 at 5:00 p.m. on Elmwood and Forest, on the site of the proposed location. According to WNYmedia.net they “are tired of the anti development crowd in Western New York.” They also blast opponents of the hotel proposal calling them “bananas” and “nimbys.” People opposed to the hotel proposal are planning on “counter attacking” with their own protest on the same day and time.

==Sources==

This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

One year on: Egyptians mark anniversary of protests that toppled Mubarak

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 21-03-2019

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Across Egypt hundreds of thousands have taken to the streets for the day, marking exactly one year since the outbreak of protests leading to 83-year-old longstanding ruler Hosni Mubarak’s downfall. The country’s decades-long emergency rule was partially lifted this week; meanwhile, a possible economic meltdown looms and a newly-elected parliament held their first meeting on Monday.

Despite the new parliament, military rule introduced following Mubarak’s fall last spring remains. Echoing the demands from a year ago, some protesters are demanding the military relinquish power; there are doubts an elected civilian leader will be permitted to replace the army.

The brief unity against Mubarak has since fragmented, with Secularists and Islamists marking the revolution’s anniversary splitting to opposing sides of Cairo’s famed Tahrir Square and chanting at each other. Initial demonstrations last year were mainly from young secularists; now, Islamic parties hold most of the new parliament’s seats — the country’s first democratic one in six decades.

Salafis hold 25% of the seats and 47% are held by the Muslim Brotherhood, which brought supporters to Cairo for the anniversary. Tahrir Square alone contained tens of thousands of people, some witnesses putting the crowd at 150,000 strong. It’s the largest number on the streets since the revolution.

Military rulers planned celebrations including pyrotechnics, commemorative coins, and air displays. The Supreme Council of Armed Forces took power after last year’s February 11 resignation of Mubarak.

Alaa al-Aswani, a pro-democracy activist writing in al-Masry al-Youm, said: “We must take to the streets on Wednesday, not to celebrate a revolution which has not achieved its goals, but to demonstrate peacefully our determination to achieve the objectives of the revolution,” — to “live in dignity, bring about justice, try the killers of the martyrs and achieve a minimum social justice”

Alexandria in the north and the eastern port city of Suez also saw large gatherings. It was bitter fighting in Suez led to the first of the revolution’s 850 casualties in ousting Mubarak. “We didn’t come out to celebrate. We came out to protest against the military council and to tell it to leave power immediately and hand over power to civilians,” said protestor Mohamed Ismail.

“Martyrs, sleep and rest. We will complete the struggle,” chanted crowds in Alexandria, a reference to the 850 ‘martyrs of the revolution’. No convictions are in yet although Mubarak is on trial. Photos of the dead were displayed in Tahrir Square. Young Tahrir chanters went with “Down with military rule” and “Revolution until victory, revolution in all of Egypt’s streets”.

If the protestors demanding the military leave power get their way, the Islamists celebrating election victory face a variety of challenges. For now, Field Marshall Mohamed Hussein Tantawi — whose career featured twenty years as defence minister under Mubarak — rules the nation and promises to cede power following presidential elections this year.

The economy is troubled and unemployment is up since Mubarak left. With tourism and foreign investment greatly lower than usual, budget and payment deficits are up — with the Central Bank eating into its reserves in a bid to keep the Egyptian pound from losing too much value.

Last week the nation sought US$3.2 billion from the International Monetary Fund. The IMF insists upon funding also being secured from other donors, and strong support from Egypt’s leaders. IMF estimates say the money could be handed over in a few months — whereas Egypt wanted it in a matter of weeks.

The country has managed to bolster trade with the United States and Jordan. Amr Abul Ata, Egyptian ambassador to the fellow Middle-East state, told The Jordan Times in an interview for the anniversary that trade between the nations increased in 2011, and he expects another increase this year. This despite insurgent attacks reducing Egyptian gas production — alongside electricity the main export to Jordan. Jordan exports foodstuffs to Egypt and has just signed a deal increasing the prices it pays for gas. 2011 trade between the countries was worth US$1 billion.

The anniversary also saw a new trade deal with the US, signed by foreign trade and industry minister Mahmoud Eisa and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk. President Barack Obama promises work to improve U.S. investment in, and trade with, nations changing political systems after the Arab Spring. Details remain to be agreed, but various proposals include US assistance for Egyptian small and medium enterprises. Both nations intend subjecting plans to ministerial scrutiny.

The U.S. hailed “several historic milestones in its transition to democracy” within a matter of days of Egypt’s revolution. This despite U.S.-Egypt ties being close during Mubarak’s rule.

US$1 billion in grants has been received already from Qatar and Saudi Arabia but army rulers refused to take loans from Gulf nations despite offers-in-principle coming from nations including Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and United Arab Emirates. Foreign aid has trickled in; no money at all has been sent from G8 nations, despite the G8 Deauville Partnership earmarking US$20 billion for Arab Spring nations.

A total of US$7 billion was promised from the Gulf. The United Kingdom pledged to split £110 million between Egypt and Arab Spring initiator Tunisia. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development says G8 money should start arriving in June, when the presidential election is scheduled.

The African Development Bank approved US$1.5 billion in loans whilst Mubarak still held power but, despite discussions since last March, no further funding has been agreed. The IMF offered a cheap loan six months ago, but was turned away. Foreign investment last year fell from US$6 billion to $375 million.

Rights, justice and public order remain contentious issues. Tantawi lifted the state of emergency on Tuesday, a day before the revolution’s anniversary, but left it in place to deal with the exception of ‘thuggery’. “This is not a real cancellation of the state of emergency,” said Islamist Wasat Party MP Essam Sultan. “The proper law designates the ending of the state of emergency completely or enforcing it completely, nothing in between.”

The same day, Amnesty International released a report on its efforts to establish basic human rights and end the death penalty in the country. Despite sending a ten-point manifesto to all 54 political parties, only the Egyptian Social Democratic Party (of the Egyptian Bloc liberals) and the left-wing Popular Socialist Alliance Party signed up. Measures included religious freedom, help to the impoverished, and rights for women. Elections did see a handful of women win seats in the new parliament.

The largest parliamentary group is the Freedom and Justice Party of the Muslim Brotherhood, who Amnesty say did not respond. Oral assurances on all but female rights and abolition of the death penalty were given by Al-Nour, the Salafist runners-up in the elections, but no written declaration or signature.

“We challenge the new parliament to use the opportunity of drafting the new constitution to guarantee all of these rights for all people in Egypt. The cornerstone must be non-discrimination and gender equality,” said Amnesty, noting that the first seven points were less contentious amongst the twelve responding parties. There was general agreement for free speech, free assembly, fair trials, investigating Mubarak’s 30-year rule for atrocities, and lifting the state of emergency. A more mixed response was given to ensuring no discrimination against LGBT individuals, whilst two parties claimed reports of Coptic Christian persecution are exaggerated.

Mubarak himself is a prominent contender for the death penalty, currently on trial for the killings of protesters. The five-man prosecution team are also seeking death for six senior police officers and the chief of security in the same case. Corruption offences are also being tried, with Gamal Mubarak and Alaa Mubarak accused alongside their father Hosni.

The prosecution case has been hampered by changes in witness testimony and there are complaints of Interior Ministry obstruction in producing evidence. Tantawi has testified in a closed hearing that Mubarak never ordered protesters shot.

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Hisham Talaat Moustafa, an ex-MP and real estate billionaire, is another death penalty candidate. He, alongside Ahmed Sukkari, was initially sentenced to death for the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Lebanese pop star Suzanne Tamim. A new trial was granted on procedural grounds and he is now serving a fifteen-year term for paying Sukkari US$2 million to slit 30-year-old’s Tamim’s throat in Dubai. Her assassin was caught when police followed him back to his hotel and found a shirt stained with her blood; he was in custody within two hours of the murder.

The court of appeals is now set to hear another trial for both men after the convictions were once more ruled unsound.

A military crackdown took place last November, the morning after a major protest, and sparking off days of violence. Egypt was wary of a repeat this week, with police and military massed near Tahrir Square whilst volunteers manned checkpoints into the square itself.

The military has pardoned and released at least 2,000 prisoners jailed following military trials, prominently including a blogger imprisoned for defaming the army and deemed troublesome for supporting Israel. 26-year-old Maikel Nabil was given a three year sentence in April. He has been on hunger strike alleging abuse at the hands of his captors. He wants normalised relations with Israel. Thousands have now left Tora prison in Cairo.

Saturn moon Enceladus may have salty ocean

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 21-03-2019

Thursday, June 23, 2011

NASA’s Cassini–Huygens spacecraft has discovered evidence for a large-scale saltwater reservoir beneath the icy crust of Saturn’s moon Enceladus. The data came from the spacecraft’s direct analysis of salt-rich ice grains close to the jets ejected from the moon. The study has been published in this week’s edition of the journal Nature.

Data from Cassini’s cosmic dust analyzer show the grains expelled from fissures, known as tiger stripes, are relatively small and usually low in salt far away from the moon. Closer to the moon’s surface, Cassini found that relatively large grains rich with sodium and potassium dominate the plumes. The salt-rich particles have an “ocean-like” composition and indicate that most, if not all, of the expelled ice and water vapor comes from the evaporation of liquid salt-water. When water freezes, the salt is squeezed out, leaving pure water ice behind.

Cassini’s ultraviolet imaging spectrograph also recently obtained complementary results that support the presence of a subsurface ocean. A team of Cassini researchers led by Candice Hansen of the Planetary Science Institute in Tucson, Arizona, measured gas shooting out of distinct jets originating in the moon’s south polar region at five to eight times the speed of sound, several times faster than previously measured. These observations of distinct jets, from a 2010 flyby, are consistent with results showing a difference in composition of ice grains close to the moon’s surface and those that made it out to the E ring, the outermost ring that gets its material primarily from Enceladean jets. If the plumes emanated from ice, they should have very little salt in them.

“There currently is no plausible way to produce a steady outflow of salt-rich grains from solid ice across all the tiger stripes other than salt water under Enceladus’s icy surface,” said Frank Postberg, a Cassini team scientist at the University of Heidelberg in Germany.

The data suggests a layer of water between the moon’s rocky core and its icy mantle, possibly as deep as about 50 miles (80 kilometers) beneath the surface. As this water washes against the rocks, it dissolves salt compounds and rises through fractures in the overlying ice to form reserves nearer the surface. If the outermost layer cracks open, the decrease in pressure from these reserves to space causes a plume to shoot out. Roughly 400 pounds (200 kilograms) of water vapor is lost every second in the plumes, with smaller amounts being lost as ice grains. The team calculates the water reserves must have large evaporating surfaces, or they would freeze easily and stop the plumes.

“We imagine that between the ice and the ice core there is an ocean of depth and this is somehow connected to the surface reservoir,” added Postberg.

The Cassini mission discovered Enceladus’ water-vapor and ice jets in 2005. In 2009, scientists working with the cosmic dust analyzer examined some sodium salts found in ice grains of Saturn’s E ring but the link to subsurface salt water was not definitive. The new paper analyzes three Enceladus flybys in 2008 and 2009 with the same instrument, focusing on the composition of freshly ejected plume grains. In 2008, Cassini discovered a high “density of volatile gases, water vapor, carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide, as well as organic materials, some 20 times denser than expected” in geysers erupting from the moon. The icy particles hit the detector target at speeds between 15,000 and 39,000 MPH (23,000 and 63,000 KPH), vaporizing instantly. Electrical fields inside the cosmic dust analyzer separated the various constituents of the impact cloud.

“Enceladus has got warmth, water and organic chemicals, some of the essential building blocks needed for life,” said Dennis Matson in 2008, Cassini project scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

“This finding is a crucial new piece of evidence showing that environmental conditions favorable to the emergence of life can be sustained on icy bodies orbiting gas giant planets,” said Nicolas Altobelli, the European Space Agency’s project scientist for Cassini.

“If there is water in such an unexpected place, it leaves possibility for the rest of the universe,” said Postberg.

Mb2 712 Crm 2016 Customisation And Configuration Practice Test

Filed Under (Financial Services) by XpvB79 on 19-03-2019

MB2-712 CRM 2016 Customisation and Configuration practice test

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Protesters turn their backs on Australian PM

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 19-03-2019

Friday, May 25, 2007

Protesters in the Central Western New South Wales city of Bathurst gave Australian Prime Minister John Howard a cold reception as he arrived for a Liberal Party luncheon in the city.

Around 200 unionists and university students gathered to protest the Howard government’s new industrial relations regime called Workchoices, the lack of funding for higher education and the introduction of Voluntary Student Unionism.

Protesters claimed that the Howard government had ignored rural and regional Australia. Daniel Walton, the community campaign co-ordinator for Macquarie Your Rights at Work told Wikinews that Mr Howard was only interested in Bathurst after it had been moved to a marginal seat.

“In the 11 years Howard has been Prime Minister not once has he visited Bathurst”, he said.

“Now Bathurst is in the seat of Macquarie, which is seen as a marginal electorate, Mr Howard is suddenly interested in the city”.

The strongly blue-collar cities of Bathurst and Lithgow were relocated to the Macquarie electorate, previously considered a safe Liberal seat after an electorate redistribution.

Mr Howard was in Bathurst campaigning for the re-election of Kerry Bartlett and was a special guest at an invite-only Liberal Party fundraiser costing AUD$95 per person. The luncheon was attended by 400 members of Bathurst’s business community.

Unionists responded by offering a $0.95 “worker’s lunch” across the street.

Before the luncheon, Mr Howard held a community morning tea at the Mount Panorama motor racing circuit, promising funding of $10 million to investigate planning, engineering and environmental issues surrounding the construction of an expressway over the Blue Mountains following the Bells Line of Road route. Mr Howard said this funding was contingent upon the NSW government matching the federal government’s contribution and would be available under Auslink II from 2009.

Prior to the Prime Minister’s arrival at the luncheon, protesters called those attending the luncheon “Chumps”, booing at and calling MP Kerry Bartlett a “loser” when he walked outside. Unionists also chanted slogans such as “Workers united, we’ll never be defeated” and “Johnie Howard is a twerp, he wants to take our rights at work”.

As Howard arrived at the luncheon, protesters held up their placards and turned their backs on Mr Howard, claiming to be doing the same as his government had done to ordinary workers.

Michael Foggarty from the Public Service Association said while big business could afford luxuries such as a $95 lunch, workers were struggling.

“They might be able to afford $95 for lunch, but when you have workers on as low as $13 an hour that is a lot of money, ordinary workers are struggling under Workchoices”, he told Wikinews.

Mr Foggarty added that rising interest rates and petrol prices were having an impact on working families.

Giving a speech at the luncheon, Mr Howard said those wishing to dismantle the government’s industrial relations reforms were rolling back a “major economic reform”. Mr Howard said both Workchoices and the removal of unfair dismissal laws had reduced unemployment and generated prosperity.

Church of Scientology: ‘”Anonymous’ will be stopped”

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 18-03-2019

Monday, February 4, 2008

Claiming that “actions are being taken”, a person replying to emails to the Church of Scientology has responded exclusively to Wikinews regarding the recent attacks on their web sites from the nebulous “Anonymous” group. In an effort to get the Church’s side of the story, Wikinews freelance journalist Brian McNeil located a contact address, knowledge@lrh.org. A “Laetitia” responded, ignoring a detailed list of questions that would have given information on the damage inflicted on the Church and action taken. Instead non-specific comments about how the Church is handling the issue were given. She first started by asking if Wikinews was “part of Anonymous or are you pro-Scientology?”

“Activities of Anonymous have been reported to the Authorities and actions are being taken. Their activities are illegal and we do not approve of them. At the same time, our main work is to improve the environment, make people more able and spiritually aware. … yes, we are taking action,” said Laetitia.

‘Anonymous’ first came to public attention when the group launched denial-of-service attacks against the Church’s website, following the Church’s attempts to remove a promotional video featuring Scientologist Tom Cruise from YouTube. Although YouTube is complying with the requests to remove the video, other sites such as Gawker.com have stated that they will continue hosting the video.

Fielding expert opinions on the Church’s response, Wikinews turned to Andreas Heldal-Lund, the creator of the Operation Clambake project, as well as a former Scientologist who wished to remain anonymous.

“I believe strongly in freedom of speech and, living in the best country in the world, I came to the conclusion that I had to help protest this cult. To me CoS [Church of Scientology] was then, and still is, a fascistic organization and a real threat to our democratic principles,” said Andreas Heldal-Lund, the creator of Operation Clambake.

“The strategy was to disarm the cult; if they took down something I linked to, I had made preparations to link to another copy or host it myself. The more they resisted it the more attention we got, the more the information was spread and the more people got involved. It felt like a cat and mouse game for many years. What for me started as a weekend stunt grew far beyond my initial scope and Operation Clambake became the site most critics linked and referred to,” added Heldal-Lund.

Heldal-Lund states that the effort of the Church to remove criticism of its organization from the web is failing.

“The cult ‘Orgs’ are ‘dead’. Recruiting in most western countries where they once experienced a healthy organic growth is very hard. All their most secret documents are spread beyond recall and easily available for anybody interested. More people than we ever dreamed now know about Scientology and at least that it ‘smells fishy’. All the information we once fought day and night to protect is now easily available for free and on the top of Google. The cult has even given up threatening us,” added Heldal-Lund who also said that there are “no major lawsuits ongoing or pending” against Operation Clambake.

“We are taking action, Anonymous will be handled and stopped, but not to the detriment of us stopping all community outreach activities. We’ve had people throw attacks at us in the past as they do not agree with the betterment of people. History is strewn with such people who start wars, wreak havoc etc. and they never continue to exist in the long run as their purpose is one of destruction. That’s a statistical and historical fact,” stated Laetitia.

Laetitia had earlier stated that Wikinews was not allowed to use the quotes that they provided saying they, “have a problem with [Wikinews] quoting this. You are writing on a help website and it isn’t the right source for the “Scientology opinion,” but later acknowledged that the inquiries were of a press nature stating, “you have made it clear [that you are a journalist] and I appreciate you being upfront on the matter.”

An expert evaluation on the e-mails by a former Church member and expert on the religion reveals that Laetitia may have slipped, providing information that she may not have been authorized to provide.

“The person you were speaking to was from the ‘Planetary Dissemination Org’ (PDO), a unit within the Sea Org responsible for promoting Scientology to new recruits which is responsible for Scientology’s websites. Most probably, the person that you were talking to did not have permission to talk to the press, which is why the person got edgy when publication was talked about. Judging by the way she responded, I am of the opinion that she felt that Wikinews was ‘PTS’ [Potential Trouble Source] as a result of being connected to whoever Scientology believes ‘Anonymous’ is, thus was attempting to handle Wikinews’ suppressive tendencies that they believe would occur as a result. It is also interesting to note that she followed a Scientology training document entitled ‘BTB 10 DEC 1969 REPORTER TRs’,” said the expert who wishes to remain totally anonymous.

“‘Then using different questions, the PRO [Public Relations Officer] gives ‘no answers’. The trick is to appear to answer the question by giving generalized statements in simple terms so that the reporter doesn’t realize his question hasn’t been answered’. Aside from being an obvious filibuster, it also shows she has been trained to deal with reporters,” added the expert who also said that the question the Church asked Wikinews: ‘Are you part of Anonymous or are you pro-Scientology’, “I find this particularly interesting as an example of Scientological for-or-against logic. In other words, if you aren’t pro-Scientology, the writer reasoned, you must be a member of Anonymous because you wouldn’t be writing to her.”

As the war between the Internet and Scientology rages on, the owner of 711chan.org says that he is prepared to “re-enter the CoS scene”, and respond to The Regime, a hacker group which attempted to shut down 711chan using keylogging to gain an administrator password to 711chan. Prior to the site coming back online this morning, Plasma, the owner and operator of 711chan.org, had this to say;

“The g00ns, one of our allies, are working on getting “The Regime” and told us to get right back into the CoS scene — which means as soon as 711chan is back online, we will be re-entering raid mode.” Also, despite earlier claims and suspicions that The Regime might have been hired by or be part of the Church of Scientology, Plasma told Wikinews that The Regime “are not part of the Church. g00ns [organization] have a long history with ‘immortal’, and what ‘immortal’ is trying to do is get at g00ns by using 711chan. It’s nothing against us.”

The website came back online this morning, and already over 18,000 posts have been made on its functioning imageboards. The owners have, via a message posted on the homepage of the site, promised to restore the other boards in the coming weeks dependent on which boards the users would like to see revived. One Anonymous user of the site had this to say about the revival, “711 is patched up and ready to take it’s place among the Legion.”

Worldwide protests have been scheduled by ‘Anonymous’ to take place against the Church on February 10, 2008. There are expected to be at least 217 protests taking place on the 10th at Church headquarters around the globe.

In a poll conducted by Wikinews on 816 internet news readers, 80% (660) said that The Internet will win the war against Scientology. 7% (63) said that the Church would win. 8% (66) said neither side will win and 3% (27) didn’t care.

Scientology protest group celebrates founder’s birthday worldwide

Filed Under (Uncategorized) by XpvB79 on 17-03-2019

 Correction — March 19, 2008 The next protest is scheduled for April 12, 2008. The article below states April 18 which is incorrect. 

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Internet group Anonymous today held further protests critical of the Church of Scientology.

The global protests started in Australia where several hundred protesters gathered at different locations for peaceful protests.

In a global speech, the Internet protest movement said Scientology “betrayed the trust of its members, [had] taken their money, their rights, and at times their very lives.” The protesters welcomed the public interest their protests have led to, and claimed they witnessed “an unprecedented flood of Scientologists [joining] us across the world to testify about these abuses.” The group said it would continue with monthly actions.

In a press statement from its European headquarters, Scientology accused the anonymous protesters of “hate speech and hate crimes”, alleging that security measures were necessary because of death threats and bomb threats. This also makes the Church want to “identify members” of the group it brands as “cyber-terrorists”.

Wikinews had correspondents in a number of protest locations to report on the events.

Anonymous states that the next protest is scheduled to take place on April 18, which happens to be the birthday of Suri, the daughter of Tom and Katie Cruise.

Contents

  • 1 Location reports
    • 1.1 Adelaide, Australia
    • 1.2 Atlanta, Georgia
    • 1.3 Austin, Texas
    • 1.4 Boston, Massachusetts
    • 1.5 Brussels, Belgium
    • 1.6 London, England
    • 1.7 Manchester, England
    • 1.8 New York, New York
    • 1.9 Buffalo, New York
    • 1.10 Seattle, Washington
    • 1.11 Sydney, Australia
    • 1.12 Portland, Oregon
  • 2 Related news
  • 3 Sources