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Twitter must give user info in WikiLeaks probe

March 12, 2011 Comments off

hosted.ap.org

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — A federal magistrate ruled Friday that prosecutors can demand Twitter account information of certain users in their criminal probe into the disclosure of classified documents on WikiLeaks.

The prosecutors’ reasons for seeking the records remain secret and it’s unknown how important they are to the investigation of the largest leak ever of classified American documents.

The Twitter users argued that the government was on a fishing expedition that amounted to an unconstitutional violation of their freedoms of speech and association.

But in a ruling issued Friday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Theresa Carroll Buchanan said the government’s request was reasonable and did nothing to hamper the Twitter users’ free speech Read more…

Japan may have hours to prevent nuclear meltdown

March 12, 2011 Comments off

reuters.com

The Fukushima nuclear plant in Fukushima prefecture in northeastern Japan is pictured in a 2008 file photo. REUTERS/KYODO/FilesThe Fukushima nuclear plant in Fukushima prefecture in northeastern Japan is pictured in a 2008 file photo.

 

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Japanese officials may only have hours to cool reactors that have been disabled by Friday’s massive earthquake and tsunami or face a nuclear meltdown.

Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) (9501.T) is racing to cool down the reactor core after a highly unusual “station blackout” — the total loss of power necessary to keep water circulating through the plant to prevent overheating.

Daiichi Units 1, 2 and 3 reactors shut down automatically at 2:46 p.m. local time due to the earthquake. But about an hour later, the on-site diesel back-up generators also shut, leaving the reactors without Read more…

Google to run US Commerce Department?

March 12, 2011 Comments off

rt.com

Rumor has it US President Barack Obama may name Google CEO Eric Schmidt as the next US Secretary of Commerce.

According to sources close to the matter, who expressed the search is still preliminary; the US president is considering both Schmidt and Pfizer CEO Jeffrey Kindler.

Obama has actively considered non academic and political elites to fill roles in his administration, including past executives from JPMorgan Chase and Read more…

Richard Lehmann: China May Corner Gold Market

March 12, 2011 1 comment

moneynews

China has likely begun a campaign to convert its dollars to gold that could end up with the nation cornering the gold market, says Richard Lehmann, editor of the Forbes/Lehmann Income Security Investor newsletter.

China is alarmed about potential weakness for the dollar, he says in an interview with Steve Forbes.

So “I’m concerned that basically China is probably already on a program to diversify the dollar into gold. I don’t think they want any other fiat currencies or want to minimize that amount.”

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Gold bars

If China buys enough gold, at some point it can simply dictate the price, Lehmann says. And it has the means to do so, given that Chinese currency reserves total almost $3 trillion, and the world’s gold supply is now worth about $5 trillion, he says.

So China could “in one stroke, basically take control of the gold market and tie the dollar to gold so that effectively, if every six months the dollar deteriorates 5 percent, they can just upgrade the stated price at which they wanted to buy gold and thereby upgrade and up-value their gold reserves, but also keep the dollar in check.”

With plenty of other investors buying gold too, many experts expect it to continue rising. Richard Russell, author of the Dow Theory newsletter, says in a commentary obtained by King World News that the precious metal may reach $6,000 an ounce.

US could tap oil stockpiles as prices rise: Obama

March 12, 2011 Comments off

WASHINGTON (AFP) – President Barack Obama on Friday said he had “tee-ed up” moves to tap emergency US oil stockpiles, as Middle East violence pushed up gas prices for hard-hit US consumers.

Trying to tamp down concern that oil prices will continue to rise on Middle East unrest, Obama said he was willing to make a rare move to open the strategic reserve, but not yet.

“We are going to try to do everything we can” to stabilize the market, Obama said.

“Everybody should know that should the situation demand it, we are prepared to tap the significant stockpile of oil that we have in the strategic petroleum reserve.”

 

With Americans struggling with Read more…

The Power of the Supermoon?

March 12, 2011 1 comment

accuweather.com

As I have mentioned here, on ABCnews.com (see the story by clicking here) and to people I had talked with about the supermoon, I was neutral, not a believer or non-believer in the power of the supermoon. Notice I say Read more…

Gates Foundation Invests $10 Million in Vaccines Developer

March 12, 2011 Comments off

bloomberg.com

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation invested $10 million in Liquidia Technologies, a closely held biotechnology company developing vaccines, as part of a $400 million initiative to fund activities to help poorer countries.

Liquidia is developing a seasonal flu vaccine and has an agreement with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative to use its technology to work on new malaria vaccines, the Research Triangle Park, North Carolina-based company said today in an e- mailed statement. The $400 million program provides low-interest loans, loan guarantees and equity investments to help finance organizations that meet the group’s focus areas.

Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) Chairman and co-founder Bill Gates, in his 2010 annual foundation letter, highlighted the need for a malaria vaccine to eradicate the disease, calling it “the highest-risk malaria work we fund.” The foundation has supplied $13.8 billion in global health funding since 1994, according to its website.

“Funding innovation is a key to addressing the unmet health needs of the world’s poorest people,” Doug Holtzman, deputy director for the foundation’s infectious diseases team, said in the statement. “This unique investment partnership will help us advance vaccine development as part of our commitment to help research, develop and deliver vaccines for the world’s poorest countries.”

Details About India and China’s Plans to Stockpile Crude Oil

March 12, 2011 Comments off

Energy expert Matt Badiali writes in DailyWealth that plans out of China and India to create strategic oil reserves of their own could put a floor under the price of oil for years to come:

China and India are faced with the same dilemma the U.S. faced in 1973. Neither country has enough petroleum to keep its citizens rolling for long. Both are exposed to a dangerous, economy-killing oil shock. And both are starting to build and fill strategic petroleum reserves of their own. They have no choice but to buy oil like crazy at these levels.

China has about 102 million barrels already in reserve. It plans to add another 168 million barrels of storage starting this year. It will finish its planned 500 million barrel reserve – equal to three months of imports – by 2020. To hit that mark, China will need about Read more…

Categories: China, India, Oil Tags: , , , ,

Utah Legislature backs gold as legal tender

March 12, 2011 Comments off

sltrib.com

The Senate gave final approval Thursday to a bill taking the first step to recognize gold and silver as legal tender in the state.

It voted 16-7 to pass HB317, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature.

The measure would recognize as legal tender gold and silver coins issued by the federal government — not just their face value, but also their value in gold and silver or to a collector.

It would not require anyone to accept them, however, but make it an option. It also would exempt sales of such coins from capital gains tax. It also would order the state to study whether Utah should establish an alternative form of legal tender, such as one backed by silver and gold.

“It will put some pressure on the federal government. That’s the goal here because Read more…

Saudi Arabian security forces quell ‘day of rage’ protests

March 12, 2011 Comments off

guardian.co.uk

Saudi Saudi policemen form a check point near the site where a demonstration was expected to take place in Riyadh on Friday. Photograph: Hassan Ammar/AP

Saudi security forces came out in strength in Riyadh on a “day of rage” organised by pro-democracy campaigners who managed only small demonstrations in the eastern provinces.

Expectations that the unrest sweeping the Arab world in the last few weeks would spread to its most conservative kingdom appeared to have been dashed by pre-emptive security measures and stern official warnings against any protests.

Far larger demonstrations rocked Yemen, where tens of thousands of pro and anti-government protesters took to the streets as President Ali Abdullah Saleh struggled to maintain his grip.

Clashes broke out in Read more…