Nov 302015

First UN Environment Program chief organized Rio Earth Summit in 1992

The Associated Press Posted: Nov 28, 2015 2:49 PM ETLast Updated: Nov 29, 2015 9:46 AM ET

Maurice Strong responds to a question at UN headquarters in New York in 2003. Strong has died at 86.

Maurice Strong responds to a question at UN headquarters in New York in 2003. Strong has died at 86. (Richard Drew/Associated Press)


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Maurice Strong, whose work helped lead to the landmark climate summit that begins in Paris on Monday, has died at 86, the head of the UN’s environmental agency said Saturday.

“Strong will forever be remembered for placing the environment on the international agenda and at the heart of development,” Achim Steiner, executive director of the UN Environment Program, said in a statement Saturday.

The statement did not provide details of Strong’s death.

Manitoba-born Strong, the first UNEP chief, organized the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, which led to the launch of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.       go to link

Nov 202015

Tracking the slow motion trainwreck of Obamacare has become one of our preferred hobbies: below is just a random sample of headlines covering just the most recent tribulations of the “we have to pass it to find out what’s in it” Unaffordable Care Act:

But the most surprising article we wrote was our explanation from three weeks ago explaining why “Your Health Insurance Premiums Are About To Go Through The Roof” showing that even insurance companies have been unable to earn a profit under Obamacare, as shown in the following chart:


This was a stunning revelation because, after all, the Affordable Care Act was largely drafted by the insurance industry itself, and if for whatever reason, it itself was unable to capitalize on Obamacare, then it has truly been a disaster.

Today we got confirmation of this when none other than the U.S.’s biggest health insurer, UnitedHealth, cut its 2015 earnings forecast with a warning that it was considering pulling out of Obamacare, just one month after saying it would expand its presence in the program.

According to Bloomberg, “UnitedHealth Group would scale back marketing efforts for plans it’s selling this year under the Affordable Care Act, and may quit the business entirely in 2017 because it has proven to be more costly than expected.

This was precisely what we cautioned on November 2.       GO TO LINK

Nov 152015

The G20 10th summit takes place in Antalya, Turkey, on November 15-16, 2015, bringing together the G20 member states as well as Azerbaijan, Spain, Malaysia, Senegal, Singapore and Zimbabwe.

Leaders of the Group of Twenty (G20) have gathered in Antalya, Turkey, to discuss global economy issues and ways to boost global growth. The refugee crisis and the fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State are also expected to be on the agenda.

France’s President Francois Hollande was unable to attend the summit as he’s currently dealing with the aftermath of a violent terrorist attack which took place in Paris on November 13. Argentine President Cristina Kirchner was also unable to attend the event due to the elections in her country.

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Nov 152015

Intelligence officials have reported that a Syrian passport belonging to one of the eight terrorists who carried out the Paris attacks was a fake, which was made in Turkey and then used for passage through Europe.

A Syrian passport bearing the name ‘Ahmad Almohammad,’ found on the body of one of the eight terrorists who carried out the Paris attacks, appears to be a fake. The jihadist obtained it in Turkey, intelligence officials reported.According to some reports, two Syrian passports were found on the bodies of two of the terrorists, but Paris police sources say they were both fakes.

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Nov 152015

PARIS (Sputnik) — The upcoming 2015 UN Climate Conference in Paris (COP21) will not be canceled in the wake of deadly attacks that hit the French capital, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Saturday.

From November 30 to December 11, France is scheduled to host and chair the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. The event is expected to result in the signing of a global agreement on climate change, introducing a legally binding and universal strategy on the issue.”No, no, no, no, no, the COP21 must take place. It will be held in conditions of high security, since it is absolutely necessary for the conference to combat climate change. Of course, it will take place,” Fabius told reporters.

On Friday evening, the deadly attacks occurred in Paris at seven different locations, including the Bataclan concert hall and the Stade de France stadium. They took the lives of at least 127 people and injured several hundreds.

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Nov 132015

Western imperialist powers have no scruples about violating sovereignty of developing countries and destroying nation-states, Venezuelan journalist Manuel Taibo notes, adding that Russia and China offer a beacon of hope for nations which seek to sustain their independence.

The modern neocolonial strategy adopted by leading capitalist powers and multinational corporations is aimed at extracting the resources of developing nations, Venezuelan journalist and writer Manuel Taibo underscores, adding that Washington uses “treacherous techniques” to pursue their interests, in particular military actions against regimes that refuse to bow before US political elite.

“These processes lead the US’s ruling elite to put the selfish interests of industrial-military circles over the interests of all mankind, and even over their own people,” Taibo writes in his article for Aporrea.

“It becomes more evident day by day that the Washington’s elite keep moving along the militaristic line, they are looking outwards, searching for new countries and nations to impose its hegemony on,” the journalist emphasizes.Taibo pointed out that, in the Middle East, US war planners are trying to drive a wedge between different religious groups and nation-states by triggering a severe sectarian strife. US policymakers are using various tools to pressure nations into submission including military actions against undesirable regimes, economic sanctions and debt pressure.

According to the Venezuelan journalist, a strikingly similar situation could be observed in Latin America, Africa, Southeast Asia and South Asia, as well in the small states of the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

“Now that is the real face of the new global paradigm,” the journalist stresses, adding that “everything else that comes along with these actions is simply an

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Nov 122015

Bollywood stars and businessmen in India are calling for a diamond, worn by Britain’s Queen Mother, first at the coronation of her husband King George VI and then at Queen Elizabeth’s coronation, to be returned to India.

The group called “Mountain of Light” after the stone, have instructed British lawyers to begin legal proceedings in London’s High Court for the return of the Koh-i-Noor diamond.

They claim the 105-carat diamond mined in India around 800 years ago was stolen “under dubious circumstances” and are demanding the British government give it back.

The stone is “one of many artefacts taken from India under dubious circumstances,” said David de Souza from India’s leisure group Titos. Speaking to London’s Sunday Telegraph, de Souza added:

“Colonization did not only rob our people of wealth, it destroyed the country’s psyche itself. It brutalized society, traces of which linger on today in the form of mass poverty, lack of education and a host of other factors.”

The diamond was given to Queen Victoria by the last ruler of the Sikhs, Duleep Singh, following the British annexe of the Punjab in 1849. The Marquess of Dalhousie, the British governor-general, arranged for it to be presented to the reigning Queen and Duleep Singh traveled to Britain in 1850 with the stone, handing it to Queen Victoria

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Nov 122015

Serious harm has been inflicted on detainees in Afghanistan, as they appear to have been subjected to physical and psychological abuse by US-led international forces in the country, a report from the International Criminal Court reveals.

The latest report from the ICC’s Office of the Prosecutor stems from several investigations into crimes committed by all sides of the conflict in Afghanistan since 2003, but reports issued in earlier years have been much more reserved in their allegations and assessments of harm, Reuters reported.

“The infliction of ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’… would have caused serious physical and psychological injury,” the report reads.

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