Pass The Robin Hood Tax: Small Change For Banks, Big Change For The Community   : Information Clearing House


Douglas Fairbanks as Robin Hood; a screenshot ...
Douglas Fairbanks as Robin Hood; a screenshot from the 1922 United Artists film Robin Hood. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Pass The Robin Hood Tax: Small Change For Banks, Big Change For The Community   : Information Clearing House.

The Robin Hood Tax campaign is calling for a tax of less than half of 1% on Wall Street transactions that could generate hundreds of billions of dollars each year.

A Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street will provide funding to kickstart the economy and get America back on its feet by creating jobs and strengthening public services like health care, education and infrastructure at home while tackling AIDS, global health, poverty and climate challenges around the world

Click Here To Send Jamie Dimon a Message From Robin Hood

Jamie Dimon received a pay package of $23 million last year as C.E.O. of J.P. Morgan Chase. Dimon is about to receive a flood of emails from Robin Hood, announcing the launch of a new campaign with a huge coalition behind it. Send him one more right now!

Video Posted June 19, 2012

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McDonalds forced to disclose all chemical ingredients on food sold in Russia


McDonalds forced to disclose all chemical ingredients on food sold in Russia viaMcDonalds forced to disclose all chemical ingredients on food sold in Russia.

Russian consumer rights‘ group recently filed a lawsuit against McDonald’s at Moscow’s Tverskoy Court. The consumer groups involved in the suit say that McDonald’s milkshakes are falsely named because they contain little milk.

McDonald’s shakes don’t deserve to be called milkshakes

Analysis of milkshakes sold at McDonald’s outlets in Russia revealed the beverages contained more vegetable oil than dairy product. Experts at the Institute of Laboratory of Nutrition, say that by Russian law these drinks can be called „milk-containing“ but cannot be labeled as „milk“. Consumer rights advocate Mikhail Anshakov, says that the „McMilkshake“ is falsely named, „They do not list the ingredients of their products which is a strict requirement for organizations of the type they are registered as in Russia. Moreover, their products contain excessive amounts of several ingredients, which is why the product name is insufficient.“

Representatives of the Consumer Rights Protection Society (CRPS) charge that by „concealing the content“ of its products McDonald’s misleads consumers. „You might be able to get away with this type of fraud in America, but not Russia“ said Yogi Protovokov of Moscow. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit do not seek any money from McDonald’s, but want the company to redesign the packaging of their products to reveal the ingredients in its menu items, rather than simply listing the calories, protein, fat and carbohydrates. Altering product packaging would entail a multi-million dollar expense to the fast food purveyor.

Taxes and ingredient lists

The current lawsuit hinges in part on another Russian court ruling last year. McDonald’s won its case against the Moscow territorial division of the Federal Tax Service. That case concluded with a judge determining that McDonald’s in Russia is not a restaurant but company which sells food products as a store. The result of the suit seemed favorable to McDonalds at the time, resulting in a 10 percent rather than 18 percent Value Added Tax.

However, by Russian law, a store which sells food products which it also manufactures must provide accurate information regarding the ingredients in its food, as well as any biologically active supplements and the presence of the GMOs, as well as the date and place of the food’s manufacturing. Russian law also stipulates that a food store must provide information on the product packaging about the potential effects of its food for people with conditions and certain diseases.

Consumer watchdog groups in Russia say McDonald’s wants to have it both ways, gaining the tax benefits of being classified as a store, while not fulfilling the obligations such a status incurs according to Russian law. The CPRS website explained the need for the suit, saying „The McDonald’s restaurant chain deliberately violates the Russian consumer rights legislation, profiting twice from the privileged situation created by Moscow’s Arbitration Court decision.“

McDonald’s representatives claim not to have received notice of the lawsuit and it was also absent in the court’s database, according to an official statement sent to The Moscow News. But personnel at the Tverskoi court confirmed to the Russian business newspaper Vedomosti that the lawsuit has been filed. Some Russian legal experts say it will be difficult for the consumer group to win its case against McDonald’s, pointing out that the milkshakes in question are produced using a technology certified by the Russian branch of Europe’s biggest milk product manufacturer Ehrmann.

The new lawsuit comes on the heels of a year of both expansion and litigation for McDonald’s in Russia, where it has operated since 1990. In 2011, the company opened 40 new restaurants in Russia. They also faced lawsuits from customers. In one case, a man who won $50 damages plus the cost of his sandwich after getting food poisoning from consuming a Big Mac. In another suit, in which a St. Petersburg man received $3,500 to cover dental expenses for the broken tooth he got when the salad he ordered at McDonald’s contained a stone.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/034810_McDonalds_ingredients_Russia.html#ixzz1kvLYshKk

http://rt.com/business/news/mcrussia-milkshake-revelation-885/

The state of Florida is trying to make it illegal to film or


The face of citizen journalism is changing rapidly with new
technology.

That’s a really good thing if you’re a citizen trying to expose
corruption and abuse, or if you’re just trying to become more
informed. It’s not so good for people trying to keep their dirty
secrets.

Legislators to the rescue!

The state of Florida is trying to make it illegal to film or
photograph farms in order to stem the tide of exposure of animal
cruelty in Big Agra factory farms.

Apparently, they’re not concerned the conditions and abuses these
animals suffer, they’re concerned about us and our cameras exposing
it…

Video:

http://www.brasschecktv.com/page/6524.html

3,5 Mill. Homeless & 18,5 Mill. Vacant Homes in the US


3.5 Million Homeless and 18.5 Million Vacant Homes in the US

Diane Sweet
occupyamerica.crooksandliars.com / Sott.net
2011-12-30 11:38:00

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The National Economic and Social Rights Initiative along with Amnesty International are asking the U.S. to step up its efforts to address the foreclosure crisis, including by giving serious consideration to the growing call for a foreclosure moratorium and other forms of relief for those at risk, and establishing a housing finance system that fulfills human rights obligations.

New government census reports have revealed disturbing information that details the cold, hard numbers of Americans who have been deeply affected by the state of our economy, and bank foreclosure practices:

In the last few days, the U.S. government census figures have revealed that 1 in 2 Americans have fallen into poverty or are struggling to live on low incomes. And we know that the financial hardships faced by our neighbors, colleagues, and others in our communities will be all the more acutely felt over the holiday season.

Along with poverty and low incomes, the foreclosure rate has created its own crisis situation as the number of families removed from their homes has skyrocketed.

Since 2007, banks have foreclosed around eight million homes. It is estimated that another eight to ten million homes will be foreclosed before the financial crisis is over. This approach to resolving one part of the financial crisis means many, many families are living without adequate and secure housing. In addition, approximately 3.5 million people in the U.S. are homeless, many of them veterans. It is worth noting that, at the same time, there are 18.5 million vacant homes in the country.

The stark realities that persist mean that millions of families will be facing the holidays in temporary homes, or homes under threat, and far too many children will be wishing for an end to the uncertainty and distress their family is facing rather than an Xbox or Barbie doll.

Housing is a basic human need and a fundamental human right. Yet every day in the United States, banks are foreclosing on more than 10,000 mortgages and ordering evictions of individuals and families residing in foreclosed homes. The U.S. government’s steps to address the foreclosure crisis to date have been partial at best.

The depth and severity of the foreclosure crisis is a clear illustration of the urgent need for the U.S. government to put in place a system that respects, protects and fulfills human rights, including the right to housing. This includes implementing real protections to ensure that other actors, such as financial institutions, do not undermine or abuse human rights.

There is a link available at the Amnesty International website for anyone who is interested and would like to join the call on the Obama administration and Congress to urgently step up efforts to address the foreclosure crisis, including by seriously considering the growing call for a foreclosure moratorium and other forms of relief, and establishing a housing finance system that fulfills human rights obligations.

Ticking Greenhouse Gas Time Bomb: Melting Permafrost | Common Dreams


Ticking Greenhouse Gas Time Bomb: Melting Permafrost | Common Dreams.

Ticking Greenhouse Gas Time Bomb: Melting Permafrost

by Seth Borenstein

WASHINGTON – Massive amounts of greenhouse gases trapped below thawing permafrost will likely seep into the air over the next several decades, accelerating and amplifying global warming, scientists warn.

Those heat-trapping gases under the frozen Arctic ground may be a bigger factor in global warming than the cutting down of forests, and a scenario that climate scientists hadn’t quite accounted for, according to a group of permafrost experts. The gases won’t contribute as much as pollution from power plants, cars, trucks and planes, though.

The permafrost scientists predict that over the next three decades a total of about 45 billion metric tons of carbon from methane and carbon dioxide will seep into the atmosphere when permafrost thaws during summers. That’s about the same amount of heat-trapping gas the world spews during five years of burning coal, gas and other fossil fuels

And the picture is even more alarming for the end of the century. The scientists calculate that about than 300 billion metric tons of carbon will belch from the thawing Earth from now until 2100.

Adding in that gas means that warming would happen „20 to 30 percent faster than from fossil fuel emissions alone,“ said Edward Schuur of the University of Florida. „You are significantly speeding things up by releasing this carbon.“

Usually the first few to several inches of permafrost thaw in the summer, but scientists are now looking at up to 10 feet of soft unfrozen ground because of warmer temperatures, he said. The gases come from decaying plants that have been stuck below frozen ground for millennia.

Schuur and 40 other scientists in the Permafrost Carbon Research Network met this summer and jointly wrote up their findings, which were published in the journal Nature on Wednesday.

„The survey provides an important warning that global climate warming is likely to be worse than expected,“ said Jay Zwally, a NASA polar scientist who wasn’t part of the study. „Arctic permafrost has been like a wild card.“

When the Nobel Prize-winning panel of climate scientists issued its last full report in 2007, it didn’t even factor in trapped methane and carbon dioxide from beneath the permafrost. Diplomats are meeting this week in South Africa to find ways of curbing human-made climate change.

Schuur and others said increasing amounts of greenhouse gas are seeping out of permafrost each year. Some is methane, which is 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide in trapping heat.

In a recent video, University of Alaska Fairbanks professor Katey Walter Anthony, a study co-author, is shown setting leaking methane gas on fire with flames shooting far above her head. …

Read more there:

Police Cracking Down on Media at OWS Video


http://youtu.be/PQHDk75oChI

Police cracking down on media at Occupy Wall Street :  Not only are police cracking down on the Occupy movement protesters but also on journalist. According to some reporters police have denied them access to cover the Occupy movement. In New York reporters with NYPD press passes are being physically removed from the scene and some even arrested. RT producer Lucy Kafanov is back in NYC to give us the latest.

 Arundhati Roy :  We Are Fighting For Justice


 Arundhati Roy :  We Are Fighting For Justice :  Information Clearing House.

The Right To Dream
We Are Fighting For Justice

“Pity the nation that has to silence its writers for speaking their minds… Pity the nation that needs to jail those who ask for justice while communal killers, mass murderers, corporate scamsters, looters, rapists and those who prey on the poorest of the poor, roam free.” – Arundhati Roy

By Arundhati Roy

November 18, 2011 „Information Clearing House“ — „The People’s University“  – Held at Judson Memorial Church 11/16/11 –

 

Tuesday morning, the police cleared Zuccotti Park, but today the people are back. The police should know that this protest is not a battle for territory. We’re not fighting for the right to occupy a park here or there. We are fighting for justice. Justice, not just for the people of the United States, but for everybody.

What you have achieved since September 17th, when the Occupy movement began in the United States, is to introduce a new imagination, a new political language into the heart of empire. You have reintroduced the right to dream into a system that tried to turn everybody into zombies mesmerized into equating mindless consumerism with happiness and fulfillment.

As a writer, let me tell you, this is an immense achievement. And I cannot thank you enough.

We were talking about justice. Today, as we speak, the army of the United States is waging a war of occupation in Iraq and Afghanistan. US drones are killing civilians in Pakistan and beyond. Tens of thousands of US troops and death squads are moving into Africa. If spending trillions of dollars of your money to administer occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan is not enough, a war against Iran is being talked up.

Ever since the Great Depression, the manufacture of weapons and the export of war have been key ways in which the United States has stimulated its economy. Just recently, under President Obama, the United States made a $60 billion arms deal with Saudi Arabia – moderate Muslims, right? It hopes to sell thousands of bunker busters to the UAE. It has sold $5 billion-worth of military aircraft to my country, India, which has more poor people than all the poorest countries of Africa put together. All these wars, from the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to Vietnam, Korea, Latin America, have claimed millions of lives – all of them fought to secure the „American way of life“.

Today, we know that the „American way of life“ – the model that the rest of the world is meant to aspire towards – has resulted in 400 people owning the wealth of half of the population of the United States. It has meant thousands of people being turned out of their homes and their jobs while the US government bailed out banks and corporations – American International Group (AIG) alone was given $182 billion.

The Indian government worships US economic policy. As a result of 20 years of the free market economy, today, 100 of India’s richest people own assets worth one-quarter of the country’s GDP while more than 80% of the people live on less than 50 cents a day; 250,000 farmers, driven into a spiral of death, have committed suicide. We call this progress, and now think of ourselves as a superpower. Like you, we are well-qualified: we have nuclear bombs and obscene inequality.

The good news is that people have had enough and are not going to take it any more. The Occupy movement has joined thousands of other resistance movements all over the world in which the poorest of people are standing up and stopping the richest corporations in their tracks. Few of us dreamed that we would see you, the people of the United States on our side, trying to do this in the heart of Empire. I don’t know how to communicate the enormity of what this means.

They (the 1%) say that we don’t have demands… perhaps they don’t know, that our anger alone would be enough to destroy them. But here are some things – a few „pre-revolutionary“ thoughts I had – for us to think about together:

We want to put a lid on this system that manufactures inequality. We want to put a cap on the unfettered accumulation of wealth and property by individuals as well as corporations. As „cap-ists“ and „lid-ites“, we demand:

• An end to cross-ownership in businesses. For example, weapons manufacturers cannot own TV stations; mining corporations cannot run newspapers; business houses cannot fund universities; drug companies cannot control public health funds.

• Two, natural resources and essential infrastructure – water supply, electricity, health, and education – cannot be privatized.

• Three, everybody must have the right to shelter, education and healthcare.

• Four, the children of the rich cannot inherit their parents‘ wealth.

This struggle has re-awakened our imagination. Somewhere along the way, capitalism reduced the idea of justice to mean just „human rights“, and the idea of dreaming of equality became blasphemous. We are not fighting to just tinker with reforming a system that needs to be replaced.

As a cap-ist and a lid-ite, I salute your struggle.

Salaam and Zindabad.

Arundhati Roy won the Booker prize in 1997 for her novel, The God of Small Things. Her non-fiction work includes An Ordinary Person’s Guide to Empire, Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers, and Broken Republic. An impassioned critic of neo-imperialism, military occupations, and violent models of economic ‘development’, Roy was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in 2004.  Her consistent exposure of the Indian state’s repressive policies has led to her being variously labelled a seditionist, secessionist, Maoist and unpatriotic troublemaker.

New Analyses Show …


Made using figures reported in "OGJ 200/1...
Image via Wikipedia

New Analyses Show Oil and Gas Industry Is Inflating the Job-Creating Potential of 

Shale Gas Development




Food & Water Watch Study Shows One Job Claim Exaggerated by 900 Percent – all rights there –

WASHINGTON – November 15 – Will the oil and gas industry create 1 million new jobs for Americans, as its latest advertisement claims? The American Petroleum Institute and major oil and gas corporations are spending millions to convince Americans that with unrestricted access to natural resources, they can lift us from our economic slump in part by fracking our nation’s shale gas reserves. But Exposing the Oil and Gas Industry’s False Jobs Promise for Shale Gas Development, a new set of analyses released today by the national consumer advocacy organization Food & Water Watch, finds that the oil and gas industry is exaggerating the capacity of shale gas development to generate jobs and economic opportunity for Americans, in one case exaggerating projected job creation by 900 percent.

“The oil and gas industry has tried to stand on three legs, claiming that shale gas is good for the environment, good for American energy security and good for the economy. The first two legs have already been kicked out, and our new analysis kicks out the third,” said Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter. “They have no legs left to stand on.”

A 2011 report by the Public Policy Institute of New York State (PPINYS) claimed that by 2018, developing 500 new shale gas wells each year in five counties in New York would create 62,620 jobs. Food & Water Watch closely examined the PPINYS report and found it riddled with flaws; in fact, the economic forecasting model that PPINYS used actually only supported a claim of 6,656 jobs. PPINYS inflated the job-creation potential of shale gas development by almost 900 percent. According to Food & Water Watch, even the corrected PPINYS jobs projection is overly optimistic because it fails to account for negative effects that shale gas development would have on other key parts of the economy, such as agriculture and tourism.

Exposing the Oil and Gas Industry’s False Jobs Promise for Shale Gas Development examines employment data, revealing that opening up five counties in the southern tier of New York to shale gas development can be expected to generate a net gain in employment of only about 2 jobs per well. This calculation, derived from data on actual employment, is in stark contrast with the forecast of 125 jobs per well in the PPINYS report. According to Food & Water Watch, an employment gain of just 2 jobs per shale gas well does not justify the inevitable costs to public health, public infrastructure and the environment that the industry would bring to New York.

Across the United States, shale gas development has generated a barrage of costly consequences:

-To date, over 1,000 cases of drinking water contamination have been reported near shale gas development sites around the U.S.

-In 2008, a fracking wastewater pit in Colorado leaked 1.6 million gallons of fluids, some of which contaminated the Colorado River.

-In Wise County, Texas, properties with fracking wells have lost 75 percent of their value.

-In 2009, Pennsylvania regulators ordered the Cabot Oil and Gas Corporation to cease all fracking in Dimock, Pa., after three spills at one well within a week polluted a wetland and endangered fish in a local creek. The spills leaked 8,420 gallons of fluids that contained potential carcinogens. The state fined the company $240,000, and it cost more than $10 million to deliver potable water to the affected homes. A legal battle has now ensued over who should be responsible for providing Dimock residents with clean water.

-Scientists have found that 25 percent of the hundreds of chemicals used in fracking can cause cancer, 37 percent can disrupt the endocrine system and 40 to 50 percent can affect the nervous, immune and cardiovascular systems.

-Fracking wells in Pennsylvania, a state with many active sites, are expected to create 19 million gallons of wastewater this year, yet many municipal treatment plants lack the capacity to treat fracking wastewater in part because it often contains radioactive elements.

Many of the flaws in the PPINYS report come from a series of studies led by Timothy Considine of the University of Wyoming. His series of studies have informed many evaluations of the economic potential of shale gas development by policymakers, including the U.S. Department of Energy’s Shale Gas Subcommittee.

The industry’s jobs projections are used to make the case for deregulation, but the oil and gas companies’ recent record tells a different story. According to a report released in September by Congressman Ed Markey (D-Ma.), ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP, Shell and ConocoPhillips, all involved in shale gas development, paid their executives a total of nearly $220 million and recorded $73 billion in profits in 2010. However, the Big 5 oil companies reduced their global workforce by a combined 4,400 employees that same year.

“While President Obama’s recent move to delay his decision on the Keystone XL Pipeline is a sign that his administration is attuned to public concern about the negative effects of tar sands, we hope he will not replace it with shale gas development,” said Hauter. “The oil and gas industry has exploited our economic woes to promote shale gas, yet actual employment data shows that it is not a cure-all for our nation’s economic challenges; the money to be made from shale gas development will mostly just benefit oil and gas executives.”

Exposing the Oil and Gas Industry’s False Jobs Promise for Shale Gas Development is available here.

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Food & Water Watch is a nonprofit consumer organization that works to ensure clean water and safe food. We challenge the corporate control and abuse of our food and water resources by empowering people to take action and by transforming the public consciousness about what we eat and drink.

News: Fukushima Fallout Fears over Japan Farms etc.


Temperature predictions from some climate mode...
Image via Wikipedia

Fukushima fallout fears over Japan farms:
New research has found that radioactive material in parts of north-eastern Japan exceeds levels considered safe for farming   

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15691571

 

Frozen Planet won’t be shown in the U.S. as viewers don’t believe in global warming:    

An episode of the BBC’s Frozen Planet documentary series that looks at climate change has been scrapped in the U.S., where many are hostile to the idea of global warming.   

http://bit.ly/vDoq9T

 

Court order allows Occupy Wall St. protesters back: –    

Hundreds of police officers in riot gear raided Zuccotti Park early Tuesday, evicting dozens of Occupy Wall Street protesters from what has become the epicenter of the worldwide movement protesting corporate greed and economic inequality.   

http://bit.ly/v7gZa5

 

Police Clear Occupy Oakland Encampment, but Protesters Return:  Protesters returned to a downtown plaza Monday evening, after hundreds of police officers raided the Occupy Oakland encampment there early Monday, arresting 33 people and flattening tents.   

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/15/us/police-raid-occupy-oakland-camp.html