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Archive for February 17, 2011

Video purporting to show the first minute of the attack on protesters in Manama, Bahrain

February 17, 2011 Comments off
Categories: Bahrain Tags: , ,

New York Overdue For an Earthquake

February 17, 2011 Comments off

New York City could start shaking any minute now.

Won-Young Kim, who runs the seismographic network for the Northeast at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, said the city is well overdue for a big earthquake.

From Metro New York:

The last big quake to hit New York City was a 5.3-magnitude tremor in 1884 that happened at sea in between Brooklyn and Sandy Hook. While no one was killed, buildings were damaged.

Kim said the city is likely to experience a big earthquake every 100 years or so.

“It can happen anytime soon,” Kim said. “We can expect it any minute, we just don’t know when and where.”

New York has never experienced a magnitude 6 or 7 earthquake, which are the most dangerous. But magnitude 5 quakes could topple brick buildings and chimneys.

Seismologist John Armbruster said a magnitude 5 quake that happened now would be more devastating than the one that happened in 1884.

The USDA Says Americans Need More Sugar…and More GMOs

February 17, 2011 Comments off

By Josh Corn

Sugar BeetThe U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is worried about an impending nationwide sugar shortage. This is the reason, officials said last week, that they gave farmers the green light to plant Monsanto’s previously outlawed genetically engineered Roundup Ready sugar beets. Currently, 30% of the world’s sugar is produced from beets.

Ironically enough, the USDA just weeks ago released its latest set of dietary guidelines for Americans, which place stronger emphasis on the importance of reducing calorie consumption and avoiding things like trans fats, refined flours — and added sugars.

“The 2010 Dietary Guidelines are being released at a time when the majority of adults and 1 in 3 children is overweight or obese and this is a crisis that we can no longer ignore,” said USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack in an official press release.

So in light of this crisis and these new recommendations, why is the Read more…

NASA: Huge Solar Flare Jamming Radio And Satellite Signals, Could Affect Electric Grid, Bright Auroras Expected

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According to NASA, a large solar eruption triggered a giant geomagnetic storm that has disturbed radio communications and could disrupt electrical power grids, radio and satellite communication in the next days

The calm before the storm. Three CMEs are enroute, all a part of the Radio Blackout events on February 13, 14, and 15 (UTC). The last of the three seems to be the fastest and may catch both of the forerunners about mid to late day tomorrow, February 17. Watch this space for updates on the impending — G2, possibly periods of G3 — geomagnetic storming.
Watch Today’s Space Weather for the most recent activity.

This is a composite image of the Sun at the moment of the X2.2 flare. Image courtesy of SDO

(NASA)

Credit: NASA/SDO

A strong wave of charged plasma particles emanating from the Jupiter-sized sun spot, the most powerful seen in four years, has already disrupted radio communication in southern China.

Solar Activity Forecast:  Read more…

WikiLeaks Cables: Repression Has Effectively Limited Libyans’ Vision for Reform

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By Kevin Gosztola

opednews.com

Libyans are mobilizing for a “Day of Rage” today on February 17. Protesters in the early afternoon, according to a member of the Libyan Youth Movement, were reported to be moving to the Security Headquarters in Benghazi. The protests are said to be gaining numbers and are headed for Maydan al Shajara once more, a location that had been the site of gunfire and petrol bombs.

The same individual also reports shortages of medical supplies at Al Bayda hospital and urges international health organizations to help out. And the movement member shared reports of people in Benghazi managed to chase away “pro-government Gaddafi thugs” by throwing rocks at them.

Many in Libya believed ahead of the “Day of Rage” that the Gaddafi regime was planning to threaten Libyans with live fire and the targeting of family members if they participated in anti-government protests. Also, it was reported that Gaddafi was having government employees go protest at pro-Gaddafi rallies, and, if they refused, they would be fired.

Cables released on Libya provide context for the protests that are Read more…

More than 2,000 new weather records set in the US last week

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newsnet5.com

Record event reports for Monday, February 7th, 2011 through Sunday, February 13th, 2011. (Hamweather.com)

By: Mark Johnson

CLEVELAND – Wow. Last week was a busy week for weather records across the United States.

From Monday, February 7, 2011 through Sunday, February 13, 2011, 2,219 new records were set. The majority were for cold temperatures and snowfall. Out of the 2,200 records, 655 were for new record low temperatures; 590 were for new record low high temperatures for a particular day; 573 new records were set for daily snowfall.

Only 66 new record high temperatures were measured last week.

The Fed is Wrong About Commodity Prices

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Author: David Weinstein

I imagine he has to say it, but Bernanke is wrong when he says US monetary policy has nothing to do with international commodity prices. At the height of the Egyptian crisis, which was partly driven by rising food prices, Bernanke couldn’t say, “Oh yea, US policy economic policy is part of the problem in Egypt.” This attitude, however, is both prevalent and respected, and it’s largely wrong.

First of all, commodities as a group are not commoditized – they are not all the same. For instance, the amount of gold in the world is largely fixed relative to annual gold production. Along with its historical position as a store a value, Gold’s consistent volume about ground is a primary reason for its currency-like quality; i.e. almost entirely driven by overall liquidity. Corn production, on the other hand can vary greatly from year to year given the amount of land devoted to it and the weather. Oil is somewhere in the middle because production can vary, but the worlds known reserves are relatively fixed. The resulting differences in price volatility have been studied ad nauseam and are most simply articulated by the so-called ‘cob-web model’ (see chart below).

Very simply put: Read more…

Gorbachev Warns of Egypt-Style Russian Revolt

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By GREGORY L. WHITE

wsj.com

MOSCOW—Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev said he is “ashamed” with the way Russia is run today and warned the Kremlin could face an Egypt-style uprising.

Nearly two decades after his reforms led to the collapse of the Soviet Union, Mr. Gorbachev denounced Russia’s “ruling class” as “rich and dissolute,” in an interview published Wednesday in Novaya Gazeta, the opposition newspaper of which he is part-owner. “I’m ashamed for us and for the country,” he said.

He lambasted the Kremlin for eroding the free media and elections that he introduced in the 1980s, and warned that its grip on power could be threatened.

“If things continue the way they are, I think the probability of the Egyptian scenario will grow,” he said in a separate radio interview released Tuesday, referring to the popular rebellion that ousted longtime President Hosni Mubarak last week. “Here it could end even more Read more…

New North Korean Space Launch Site Appears Completed

February 17, 2011 Comments off

Steve Herman

voanews.com

Image taken from the Ikonos satellite, January 10, 2011 

Photo: GeoEye and Globalsecurity.org

Image taken from the Ikonos satellite, January 10, 2011

New satellite imagery seen by VOA News shows North Korea has completed a launch tower at its second missile launch facility, in the country’s northwest.  Intelligence analysts in the United States and South Korea are keeping a close eye on the facility, near Tongchang-dong.

The site is seen as a critical element in Pyongyang’s quest to build a missile capable of delivering a nuclear weapon across the Pacific.

The satellite pictures were taken during the past month. Most significantly, the photographs reveal Read more…

FBI: 100 Percent Chance of WMD Attack

February 17, 2011 Comments off

By Ronald Kessler
Newsmax

The probability that the U.S. will be hit with a weapons of mass destruction attack at some point is 100 percent, Dr. Vahid Majidi, the FBI’s assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate, tells Newsmax. 

Such an attack could be launched by foreign terrorists, lone wolves who are terrorists, or even by criminal elements, Majidi says. It would most likely employ chemical, biological, or radiological weapons rather than a nuclear device.

As it is, Majidi says, American intelligence picks up hundreds of reports each year of foreign terrorists obtaining WMD. When American forces invaded Afghanistan, they found that al-Qaida was working on Read more…
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