Sunday, April 14, 2013

Northern Lights could be visible in Ohio and other parts of the north east! The lights are expected to be visible about 8 p.m.!

The Ohio Valley may experience a different kind of light show Saturday night.
According to, a solar flare that happened about 2 a.m. Thursday morning may create a spectacular display of northern lights Saturday evening. The Ohio Valley also happens to be in the “Good” to “Fair” viewing area according to the website.
States listed in the “Good” viewing area include New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia and parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, Connecticut, Road Island and New York including New York City.

The lights are expected to be visible about 8 p.m. however, there is a possibility the lights will deviate for up to seven hours, according to AccuWeather.
Dazzling Northern Lights Anticipated Tonight
A solar flare that occurred around 2 a.m. Thursday morning may create a spectacular display of northern lights Saturday evening. The midlevel flare had a long duration and was directed at Earth. According to Astronomer Hunter Outten, who stated that this flare was “impressive”, these are the best conditions for seeing a direct effect on our planet. On the Kp index, the flare has been categorized at 6 to 8. This is a scale for measuring the intensity of a a geomagnetic storm. The 6 to 8 rating means that the effects of the radiation will have a greater reach.

Northern Lights Video

Madoff Contacts Congress: 'JPM Was Complicit In My Crime'

JPM knew all about my Ponzi.
Madoff sends info on Ponzi-complicit banks to Congress.
Start watching at 55 seconds.  Bernie keeps banging the drum, this time with a letter from prison sent to Marketwatch editors, after already reaching out to CNBC and Fox Biz in the past 60 days.
Bernard Madoff, speaking out from prison, says the banks knew of his Ponzi scheme all along.  The perpetrator of a history-making $50 billion Ponzi scheme wrote in a letter to MarketWatch from jail that he is now telling government committees the story.
Madoff: “From my first interview to the media I have said that ‘the banks must have known,’ and were complicit and contributing to my crime.”
In the emailed letter, he pointed to J.P. Morgan, Bank of New York, HSBC and Citigroup as having access to information about his scam.  He added that other banks also knew.
Madoff wrote that “the trustee seems unwilling to act on my offer” to help and is therefore “offering this information to the appropriate governmental committees in the hope that this information will prove helpful in future regulation of the appropriate institutions.”
The House Financial Services Committee and the Senate Banking Committee had no immediate comment on whether they had received information from Madoff.  A spokesman for the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency declined to comment.
Madoff’s comments come as prosecutors are looking at whether J.P. Morgan failed to fully alert authorities to suspicions about Madoff’s finances, according to a report in the New York Times on Wednesday.
J.P. Morgan is reportedly also embroiled in a squabble with regulators over a government probe into the institution’s relationship with Madoff.  According to a January report by Reuters, the OCC, J.P. Morgan’s chief regulator, has been unable to obtain documents it requested from the bank in connection with an investigation into its relationship with Madoff.
The report cites a letter from Treasury Department Inspector General Eric Thorson to J.P. Morgan’s general counsel, Stephen Cutler, saying the OCC has been unable to obtain what it is seeking.  Madoff had an account at J.P. Morgan Chase that he used to transfer funds between offices.

Earlier tonight:

NYT: JPMorgan Faces Multiple Criminal Investigations

More detail is here:

Madoff Emails CNBC From Prison, Accuses JPM Of Fraud

Bailed-Out Banks Using Government Aid To Pay Back Government Loans

H7N9 – 4 more infected – Chinese scientists say virus mutating 8 times faster than normal, faster than any virus except HIV

First few days is was 1 new infection a day, then is was 2 a day, then 3 now its 4. Projected infected by day 20 – 100,000
Ninth H7N9 Death Raises Concerns
Mr. Han, female, 35-year-old, Chuzhou South Qiao District residents, the onset of March 15, March 20 into the treatment of Jiangsu Nanjing , March 31 was officially confirmed human cases of infection with the H7N9 avian flu. 14:30 today, patients Mr. Han died after rescue invalid
The above translation describes the death of the third confirmed H7N9 case (35F – A/Anhui/1/2013) who was in critical condition when announced.  The death increases the total to 9.  Earlier today 4 additional confirmed cases were announced, increasing that total to 28.  WHO issued an update today which tallied 24 cases and 7 deaths.  Media reports had indicated one case (4M) had recovered.  That was was previously characterized as mild.  The recovery would be the first for a confirmed case and would lower the case fatality rate to 90%.

H7N9 bird flu may mutate 8 times faster than regular flu, study finds
The new bird flu could be mutating up to eight times faster than an average flu virus around a protein that binds it to humans, a team of research scientists in Shenzhen says.
Dr He Jiankui, an associate professor at South University of Science and Technology of China, said yesterday that the authorities should be alarmed by the results of their research and step up monitoring and control efforts to prevent a possible pandemic.

China to vaccinate 90,000 pigeons against bird flu
Chinese colonel says latest bird flu virus is U.S. biological weapon
A Chinese Air Force officer on Saturday accused the U.S. government of creating the new strain of bird flu now afflicting parts of China as a biological warfare attack.

From 2011 on the ostrich media:
Scientists are concerned about a man-made, highly virulent and contagious form of H5N1.
Fouchier explained it took only five mutations for the virus to become extremely contagious. The ferrets infected with the new virus died. Ferrets are often used in flu virus research, experts say, because viruses multiply in these animals in ways similar to humans.
Global outbreak map:


David Stockman: ‘Fed Is A Serial Bubble Machine For The Top 1%. We’ve Been Robbed By The Fed’

CHART – Inflation Adjusted Gold Price (1970-2011)

Ron Paul On Drones, Kill Lists, Bernanke And Gold

Peter Schiff: Gold will be many multiples higher once the printing presses stop

Peter Schiff: The Real Fiscal Cliff Is Dollar Crisis! Buy Gold! Buy Silver! Own Real Things!!!

 APRIL 10, 2013
Video: Gold Outlook

Fox News "Tokyo is a target" propaganda

Will Voters Forgive Obama for Cutting Social Security?

Information Clearinghouse – by William Greider
President Obama has riled loyal Democrats by tossing Social Security onto the table in his poker game with Republicans. Not to worry. I think I know how this story ends. A year from now, when the 2014 congressional campaigns are hot underway, Republicans will be running against Obama-the-slasher and promising to protect Social Security from the bloodthirsty Democrats.
By then, having lost on his too-cute strategy, the president will be reduced to lamely reassuring old folks. Really, he didn’t actually intend to cut their benefits, really he didn’t. It was just a ploy to get tightwad conservatives to give in a little on tax increases. Republicans can pull out the videotapes in which Obama and team explain their high-minded purpose—sacrificing the Democratic party’s sacred honor in order to get Republicans to play nice.  
Forget about that. House Speaker John Boehner promptly brushed off Obama’s gambit. If the president wants to whack Social Security, Boehner suggested he can do it, but don’t expect the GOP to collaborate in such a plot. “If the president believes these modest entitlement savings are needed to shore up these programs, there is no reason they should be held hostage for more tax hikes,” Boehner said.
The president set this trap himself; now Boehner will spring it on him. Does Obama not remember how Democrats lost control of the House back in 2010? The party got very little credit for enacting health care reform because the Republicans had already demonized the accomplishment as a threat to the much-beloved program of Medicare. The rightwingers promised to save Medicare from bloodthirsty Democrats by repealing Obama’s new reform program. This was all a ridiculous lie, of course, but the White House declined to call out the liars. Instead, Obama responded with flowers. This time, he is taking Republicans out to diinner.
So here is what I expect to happen. The elaborate and confusing charade of deficit politics will continue through this year and next—both parties solemnly seeking to shrink the swollen federal deficits—and distracting Washington from the real economic threat of stagnation or worse. At the end of the day, Social Security will not be cut. Nor will much else be accomplished, for good or for ill. Yes, the two parties may eventually approve some grandiose budget resolutions—official promises to cut spending drastically. But that process is usually a charade in itself with a long-established history of fiction and fantasy.
These budget promises do not become real until Congress authorizes projects and appropriates the money. The appropriators have the real power and they can change the numbers and designs and whatever else they wish. Depending on how senators and representatives feel at the time, they can embrace the promises and cut specific spending or totally ignore whatever the budget resolution had promised the public.
This is why I expect Social Security to survive the onslaught. When it gets to the money roll calls this year and next, individual members of Congress will have to swallow some big lies in order to vote for cutting Social Security benefits. First, of course, the cost-of-living gimmicks Obama has proposed will not shave a penny off the federal deficits or debt. That is because the Social Security benefits are not paid by the federal budget. They are drawn from the Social Security Trust Fund—the money paid in by working people every payday. People know this is their money, not some government handout.
So who gets tell the folks that their FiCA deductions were a joke—only an accounting fiction? The financial problems facing Social Security are easily fixed (as Obama himself has said) and are actually 30 years away. When the Congressional Budget Office is required to “score” Obama’s so-called cost-of-living reform, it will be compelled to announce that whacking the old folks contributes not a penny to reducing the federal government’s deficits.
In fact, there is an even bigger lie concealed by the fiscal scolds and ignored by witless media, too. Again and again, self-righteous critics have portrayed Social Security as the profligate monster borrowing from the Treasury and sucking the life out of federal government.
Guess what? It’s the other way around. The federal government borrows from Social Security. The Treasury has been borrowing from the Social Security Trust Fund for 30 years, and the debt to Social Security beneficiaries now totals nearly $3 trillion. The day is approaching when that money will be needed for its original purpose: paying Social Security benefits to the working people who contributed to the fund.
That is the real crisis that makes the financial barons and their media collaborators so anxious to cut Social Security benefits. They would like to get out of repaying the debt—that is, giving the money back to the people who earned it. The only way to do this is cut the benefits—over and over again. Count on it. If the president and Congress succeed in this malicious scheme, they will come back again and again to cut more and more. If the politicians join this sordid conspiracy, voters should come after them with pitchforks and torches.
How much will elected progressives budge on Obama’s scheme? Read John Nichols’s analysis.

Fatal Payback for Organizing, Mother Says

     GULFPORT, Miss. (CN) - A worker trying to unionize an unsafe workplace was dragged into a conveyor and killed when the plant intentionally left him unattended inside and failed to lock the equipment, his mother claims in court.
     Cynthia Hebert sued Omega Protein, ACE American Insurance Co., and ESIS Inc., in Federal Court, seeking damages for the death of her son, Christopher Allen Hebert.
     She claims Omega "engaged in intentional conduct designed to bring about injury, or death, to Christopher."
     In the years before he died, Chris Hebert tried to unionize the workers at the unsafe plant, which met "harsh resistance" from management, his mother says in the complaint.
     Christopher died on April 9, 2012, at Omega Protein's Moss Point, Miss. fish-processing plant, according to the complaint.
     Houston-based Omega Protein produces omega-3 fish oil and fish meal.
     Hebert, 24, had worked at the plant for three years, according to WLOX-TV of Biloxi.
     While working in the maintenance department, he reported to his supervisors "what he believed to be unreasonably unsafe and dangerous working conditions," but management failed to act, according to the complaint.
     "Upon information and belief, because Christopher's reports of unsafe and dangerous work conditions were not acted upon by Omega Protein, Christopher began to discuss with other employees and management the need to unionize the workers at the Moss Point facility," his mom says in the complaint. "Christopher began the process of unionization by having the employees sign a petition. Christopher believed that unionization of the employees at the Moss Point facility would help to improve the working conditions and eliminate the unsafe and unreasonable dangerous conditions there. Based upon information and belief, Christopher's efforts to unionize the employees of Omega Protein were met with harsh resistance from the management at Omega Protein. Based on information and belief, Christopher was harassed by the management of Omega Protein for his unionization efforts.
     "On April 9, 2012, Christopher reported to work at the Moss Point facility. After arriving at work, he was directed by supervisor Wayne Gray to weld the seams of a newly installed hopper that released fish products into a single screw conveyor at its base. At that time, supervisor Gray assigned an employee to be Christopher's safety watchperson. This new 'safety' watchperson was not the same watchperson Christopher partnered with normally. At the time Christopher began his work, the single screw conveyor equipment remained energized and operational. At the time Christopher began his work, Christopher was unaware that the single screw conveyor was energized and operational. The single screw conveyor was not locked out or otherwise prevented from operating. While Christopher was inside the single screw conveyor, his safety watchperson left without notifying Christopher. After the safety watchperson left, another employee was directed by an Omega Protein supervisor to turn on the single screw conveyor.
     "When the single screw conveyor was activated, Christopher was dragged into the machinery feet first. Christopher began screaming for help as the machine dragged him in. Other employees heard Christopher's screams and arrived at Christopher's location. Christopher's last words were 'I'm dead!' Christopher died of massive blood loss.
     "Based upon information and belief, defendant Omega Protein intentionally chose not to have lockout equipment and safety rules for the single screw conveyor which killed Christopher. Based on information and belief, defendant Omega Protein intentionally left Christopher unattended in the energized and operational single screw conveyor without a safety watchperson. Based upon information and belief, defendant Omega Protein, by and through its employees, engaged in intentional conduct designed to bring about injury, or death, to Christopher."
     Hebert's mother claims that ACE and ESIS, which provided workers' compensation insurance to Omega Protein, failed to inspect the plant and implement machinery safety rules.
     Omega Protein did not have its own safety rules, and relied on the insurers to design and implement them, according to the complaint.
     Hebert's family seeks compensatory and punitive damages for wrongful death, pain and suffering, negligence, and breach of contract.
     It is represented by David Harris Jr. with the Corban Gunn Van Cleave Law Firm of Biloxi.
     Omega Protein did not return a request for comment.  

Nazi-era reparations debate back with a bang

A longstanding debate over whether Germany owes Greece reparations stemming from the 1941-44 nazi occupation re-emerged today in an international ministerial spat.
In early 2010 then prime minister George Papandreou said that while the issue of German World War II reparations had not been definitively resolved, Athens would not raise it during talks to tackle the country's debt crisis.
But late last year Greece's government ordered a special committee at the state accounting office to investigate whether Germany still owes war reparations.
The committee finished the secret report last month.
German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble snapped on Thursday that Greece should focus on reforming its economy and that the issue of war reparations had been definitively closed years ago.
"I consider such comments irresponsible," he said.
Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos retorted that the reparations issue was one for international law to determine.
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Greece unemployment hits record high

The jobless rate in Greece has almost tripled since 2009 [AFP]

New data shows that over 27 percent of Greeks are jobless, a rate that has tripled since debt crisis struck in 2009. 

Greece's unemployment rate reached a new record of 27.2 percent in January, new data has showed, reflecting the depth of the country's recession after years of austerity imposed under its international bailout.
The latest figure rose from a revised 25.7 percent in December, the country's statistics service ELSTAT said on Thursday.
The jobless rate has almost tripled since the country's debt crisis emerged in 2009, and was more than twice the eurozone's average unemployment reading of 12 percent.
"The first quarter will remain tough amid the deep recession, despite an improvement in the previous two months due to seasonal hirings," said Nikos Magginas, an economist at commercial Greek lender National Bank.
Unemployment among youth aged between 15 and 24 stood at 59.3 percent in January, up from 51 percent in the same month in 2012.
Greece's economy is in its sixth year of recession, battered by tax hikes and spending cuts demanded by its European Union and International Monetary Fund lenders.
The economy is expected to shrink 4.5 percent this year.
The high jobless rate is keeping Greeks pessimistic about their economic prospects.