On February 29, Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, penned a post celebrating the 100th closure of a coal-fueled power plant: Chicago's Crawford plant. He also boasts that the group's efforts have prevented 166 new coal-fueled power plants.
Power plants throughout the country are being closed because of onerous regulations being mandated by the EPA.
Not only are the EPA regulations aggressive, they are also invasive. The EPA wants a specific technology that will cost the ratepayers ten times more than similar technologies.
On March 2, the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver denied the request to put the new regulations on hold while the appeal is being considered.
Environmental groups believe the consumers have been "getting a free ride because the cost of electricity from these plants is artificially low."
With the Administration's permission, the environmentalists have a stranglehold on American energy policy. They are not apt to delay implementation. The EPA is pushing these regulations now because if President Obama does not get reelected, the Republican president will delay indefinitely or repeal the regulations altogether. The big question is who is selling the "specific technology" the EPA is demanding? I'd start with a list of OfA, DNC and Obama 2012 bundlers and work from there...
[Dawn] At least 145 people are missing and "presumed dead" after an avalanche hit a village in Afghanistan's northeastern Badakhshan province last week, the United Nations ...boodling on the grand scale... said Saturday.
Afghan officials had earlier Saturday put the corpse count from the March 4 series of avalanches in Badakhshan's Shekay district at 56.
The UN said an avalanche in the area claimed 50 lives and warned of severe flooding over coming weeks due to melting snow.
Afghanistan's harshest winter in 15 years has claimed scores of lives, with the avalanches taking the toll to more than 90 in Badakhshan alone, according to officials.
"Access to Dispay village is possible only by road from neighbouring Tajikistan but has been severely hampered by snow-blocked roads", said UN's Office of the Humanitarian Coordinator for Afghanistan in a statement.
"Helicopter access is not possible as there is a high risk of triggering further avalanches."The Geneva-based Agha Khan Foundation, the UN Food Programme and the US embassy have donated food and medicines to the affected families.
"This tragedy is likely to be one of many in the near future. Heavy snows will result not just in avalanches but also, in a few weeks' time, severe flooding in many parts of the country", said Humanitarian Coordinator, Michael Keating.
For the sake of the children, one would want their mother to be the legal wife, and the career woman to legally be the mistress.
Clearly these women have not thought this through. While I am not a lawyer, it seems to me the career woman/Nth wife/legal mistress will be turning over her income to support another woman's kids, and getting no legal protections whatsoever, just for the opportunity to have a religiously sanctioned occasional bed partner.
In fact, wasn't that essentially the situation for the woman honour-killed with the daughters of the second wife up in Canada?
BALASORE: The DRDO is likely to conduct the much-awaited crucial test of submarine launched ballistic missile (SLBM) K-15 from an underwater platform off Andhra Pradesh coast on Sunday.
The test was rescheduled from March 4 as the communication alignment could not take place properly due to high tide in the sea. As part of the coordinated mission, the missile will be test-fired from a pontoon (replica of a submarine) positioned nearly 20 feet undersea.
An official said the cables for communication between the pontoon and a ship (makeshift control room) could not be laid due to heavy current in the sea and high tide on full moon day.
The DRDO has, in fact, prepared for twin trials of this indigenously built nuclear capable missile. The second missile will be test-fired within seven days of the trial of the first one.
The test seems crucial for India since the missile could not be tested last year even after a series of attempts. A scheduled test was deferred several times due to technical glitches in the missile system.
The DRDO is eyeing for the success of the missile as only Russia, the USA, France, UK and China have been successful in firing nuclear tipped missiles from air, land and undersea.
Having a strike range of about 700 km, the K-15 missile is 10 metres in length and a metre in diameter. Its launch weight is about 10 tonnes. After its induction, the missile will equip the country's first nuclear-powered submarine ANS Arihant.
A scientist said K-15 combines aspects of both cruise and ballistic missiles, which use multiple-stage rockets to exit the atmosphere and re-enter in a parabolic trajectory.
[Dawn] The Human Rights Commission of Pakistain (HRCP) on Saturday expressed its concern over reports of forced conversion and marriage of Hindu girls in Sindh -- 'on average 25 cases a month' -- and urged the authorities concerned to ensure protection to the minorities.
HRCP vice chairperson Amarnath Motumal and council members Prof Badar Soomro, Inder Ahuja and Asad Iqbal Butt told journalists at a presser that the culprits were benefiting from loopholes in the existing laws.
They called for enactment of new comprehensive laws in order to restore the sense of security in the community.
Relatives of four girls who were allegedly kidnapped recently -- Rinkle Kumari, Dr Lata Kumari, Asha Mohandas and Bharti Naraindas -- also appeared before the media and complained that the police extended to them no help while the subordinate judiciary did not appear helpful either.
"The culprits are well-armed and enjoy the support of influential religious people," they said.
The HRCP activists stressed that the police should register an FIR as soon as the parents or relatives of kidnap victims approached them with a complaint. "If a kidnapped adult girl is recovered and produced in court, she should be sent to Darul Amman immediately for a period equal to her captivity, or for at least one month, before she is asked to record her first statement. Then she should be asked to decide whether she wants to go with her parents/relatives or with alleged kidnapper/s," they said. However, there's more than one way to stuff a chicken... they added, if the kidnapped girl was a minor, she should immediately be reunited with her parents.
The HRCP activists said that there could be no objection if anyone embraced Islam of their own accord, but such a person should be at liberty to meet his or her parents and satisfy them that it was not a forced decision.
"But in the case of the four girls, they were not allowed to meet their parents anymore and this proves that they are under pressure," they argued.
Speaking about the growing menace of kidnappings, forced marriages and forced conversions, they said that Hindus now tended to marry off their girls as soon as they reached adulthood or migrate to some other country.
The rights activists deplored that even President Asif Ali President Ten Percent Zardari ... sticky-fingered husband of the late Benazir Bhutto ... 's orders about the recovery of kidnapped Hindu girls were not being followed by the law-enforcement agencies.
"The state must fulfil its primary responsibility of protecting the citizens' right to live, and follow and profess their religion," they stressed.
Prof Soomro told the media that it was strange that Hindus converting to Islam were almost always maidens of tender years and not elderly people.
Rinkle Kumari's father, Nandlal, who is a schoolteacher, narrated his ordeal after the disappearance of his daughter. He said he was driven from pillar to post when he approached the police to lodge an FIR of her kidnapping. Finally when the FIR was registered, he alleged, he had to face harassment as the court area was surrounded by heavily armed religious activists. He alleged that the court acted in haste and handed over his daughter to the police and eventually allowed her to go with her 'kidnapper'.
"My wife and other daughters were not allowed to meet Rinkle."
Dr Lata Kumari's father, Dr Ramesh Kumar, a resident of Jacobabad, said that his daughter had been to Bloody Karachi ...formerly the capital of Pakistain, now merely its most important port and financial center. It may be the largest city in the world, with a population of 18 million, most of whom hate each other and many of whom are armed and dangerous... in connection with her advanced studies when she was kidnapped by a man, said to be a judge's son.
A resident of Lyari, Naraindas, a driver, said his daughter, Bharti, used to go to an industrial home in the neighbourhood to learn sewing and embroidery. She was kidnapped by a son of a policeman, he alleged. He said that Bharti was a minor -- born in
1996 -- and could not have a freewell marriage.
Ramesh Kumar, a relative of 16-year-old girl Asha Mohandas, who hails from Jacobabad, said she used to go to a beauty parlour for training. He alleged that she was kidnapped from the parlour.
[Dawn] RAWALPINDI: A mother seeking police help in arresting the killers of her two daughters fell victim to the brutality of police here on Saturday.
Talking to news hounds, Shahjehan Begum alleged that her daughters Saima Naz and Saira Naz were killed and another was injured by one Asad in a hostel in the limits Civil Lines police on June 20, 2011.
She said she filed a murder case with the Civil Lines police but the killer was still on the lam.
"Today I along with my daughter Sobia and a relative Sher Khan tried to meet CM Shahbaz Sharif and request him to provide me justice, but SHO Raja Shakeel jugged us in a room and tortured us," she said.
The police jugged the complainants in a room built at Gate number 1 for security guards and freed them after the chief minister left the venue.
Ms Shahjehan alleged that the killer was being protected by some influential people in the city. The chief minister reportedly took notice of the incident and directed the RPO to arrest the killer and submit a report to his office. Besides, he also invited Ms Shahjahan to the chief minister office in Lahore.
i m sure this lady will never get the justice becaz one of pml n leader is providing the shelter to the killer and his family.i think sahbaz shareef the khadme ala should resign on this falure. Shame on u pml n leaders.
[Daily Nation (Kenya)] The number of professed Catholics in the world has grown by 15 million, thanks to increases in Africa and Asia, the Vatican said Saturday, unveiling the latest edition of its yearbook. Wonder how the Episcopalians are doing?
The conservative branch is doing well, with many American congregations choosing to move from Western bishoprics to African ones in addition to conversions in Africa and elsewhere. The liberal branch is shrinking, as I understand it.
Giving figures for 2010, the Vatican said the faithful now totalled 1.196 billion, keeping pace with world population growth, but numbers had fallen off in Europe and Latin America.
The greatest proportion of Catholics was still in Latin America at 28.34 per cent, down from 28.54 per cent in 2009, followed by Europe with 23.83 per cent against 24.05.
The Church gained ground in Africa, where its congregations rose from 15.15 to 15.55 per cent and in Southeast Asia, up from 10.41 to 10.87 per cent.
The percentage of baptised Catholics in the world remained stable at 17.5, according to the yearbook presented to Pope Benedict XVI by Vatican number two, Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone and his deputy Angelo Becciu.
Numbers of priests also rose in Africa and Asia, by 1,695 and 761 respectively, but fell by 905 in Europe.
Similarly, seminarians training to be priests increased by 14.2 per cent in Africa, 13 per cent in Asia and 12.3 per cent in the Pacific regions, but were down 10.4 per cent in Europe and 1.1 per cent in the Americas.
The us Episcopal church is withering, but the world Anglican church is growing by leaps and bounds, especially in Africa, where blacks are discarding Islam and becoming Anglicans in such numbers that Riyadh is scared to death.
But some of the African Anglican Bishops and Archbishops are becoming as powerful as princes.
Their timing was superb as well, with the schism among US Episcopalians and Anglicans. When the liberals drove the conservatives out, they joined "African missionary" Anglican churches, which are sending huge amounts of money to Africa.
Right when they needed it to pay for their explosive growth.
Internet spies triggered a security scare at Nato and in Britain after creating a fake Facebook account of its most senior commander to harvest personal details from his high-level friends.
Chinese hackers are thought to have been behind the plot, which saw a bogus page set up in the name of James Stavridis, Nato's Supreme Allied Commander.
Among those caught up in the scam included top brass in the British military and MoD officials, who unwittingly accepted false 'friend requests' from the account.
This, in turn, gave the hackers access to a mine of information, including e-mail addresses, names of family members, their movements and possibly even phone numbers, which could result in blackmail attempts.
It could also lead to the hackers trying to crack passwords on classified files as personal information may have been used on encrypted systems, it was reported by The Sunday Telegraph.
While it is highly unlikely any sensitive information would have been left on the social networking site by Nato staff, the incident is deeply embarrassing.
Nato was told of the account late last year and got it taken down by Facebook.
In this day and age - of electronic governmental monitoring of personal activity, electronic payments and rampant identity theft - anyone who puts personal information on the internet is mildly retarded. Frankly, it's astonishing that an information sieve like Facebook has gotten so many individuals to cough up their personal details, and in so doing, attained a multi-billion dollar stock valuation. In future, I look forward to a company-ending class action lawsuit against this house of cards as a result of tens of thousands of Facebook dupes having their credit ruined by information thieves. Too bad the founders will have gotten their pound of flesh from deluded investors by then.
Sarah "Sally" Hemings (Charles City County, Virginia, circa 1773 -- Charlottesville, Virginia, 1835) was an enslaved woman of mixed race owned by President Thomas Jefferson through his wife's inheritance.