Saturday, June 30, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 10:15 pm
"A US company is taking plastics recycling to another level – turning them back into the oil they were made from, and gas.

All that is needed, claims Global Resource Corporation (GRC), is a finely tuned microwave and – hey presto! – a mix of materials that were made from oil can be reduced back to oil and combustible gas (and a few leftovers).

Key to GRC’s process is a machine that uses 1200 different frequencies within the microwave range, which act on specific hydrocarbon materials. As the material is zapped at the appropriate wavelength, part of the hydrocarbons that make up the plastic and rubber in the material are broken down into diesel oil and combustible gas.

GRC's machine is called the Hawk-10. Its smaller incarnations look just like an industrial microwave with bits of machinery attached to it. Larger versions resemble a concrete mixer."

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 2:09 pm
"The publication of an anthology of works, composed on paper cups by detainees, provides a harrowing insight into the torments and fading hopes of prisoners. Leonard Doyle reports."

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Monday, June 25, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 4:34 pm
by Barton Gellman and Jo Becker

"Just past the Oval Office, in the private dining room overlooking the South Lawn, Vice President Cheney joined President Bush at a round parquet table they shared once a week. Cheney brought a four-page text, written in strict secrecy by his lawyer. He carried it back out with him after lunch.

In less than an hour, the document traversed a West Wing circuit that gave its words the power of command. It changed hands four times, according to witnesses, with emphatic instructions to bypass staff review. When it returned to the Oval Office, in a blue portfolio embossed with the presidential seal, Bush pulled a felt-tip pen from his pocket and signed without sitting down. Almost no one else had seen the text.

Cheney's proposal had become a military order from the commander in chief. Foreign terrorism suspects held by the United States were stripped of access to any court -- civilian or military, domestic or foreign. They could be confined indefinitely without charges and would be tried, if at all, in closed "military commissions."

"What the hell just happened?" Secretary of State Colin L. Powell demanded, a witness said, when CNN announced the order that evening, Nov. 13, 2001. National security adviser Condoleezza Rice, incensed, sent an aide to find out. Even witnesses to the Oval Office signing said they did not know the vice president had played any part."

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posted by @netwurker at 11:55 am
"THE young men who collected trolleys at three Centro shopping centres in and around Albury were always good for a cheery hello and a chat.

One day in late May they were not there, and the story of instant dismissal, shipped-in replacements and the unending search for lowest-cost services by Australia's largest retailers exposes deep social and economic forces changing Australia.

The 20 trolley boys who were summarily dismissed by a Melbourne labour-hire company, Xidis Pty Ltd, trading as Effective Supermarket Solutions, are among those least able to defend themselves from such forces.

Some got their jobs through a community organisation, Personnel Employment, that places mentally and physically handicapped people into work.

They are, said the director of the Office of Workplace Services, Nicholas Wilson, "the most vulnerable of the vulnerable"."

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posted by @netwurker at 8:09 am
By Washington correspondent Michael Rowland

"The US plans to send some of the detainees held at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba to a new jail in Afghanistan but denies it is on the verge of closing the detention centre.

Senior Bush administration officials have told US media outlets that the Government is nearing a decision to close Guantanamo Bay, because of concern about the damage it is doing to America's international reputation.

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino is denying any action is imminent but has again spoken of the President's desire to shut down the unpopular facility.

"The United States should not be the world's jailers - those are his words," he said."


Wednesday, June 20, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 4:31 pm
"The Federal Opposition has demanded that Attorney-General Philip Ruddock explains claims that a secret taxpayer-funded political unit is operating out of his Sydney ministerial office.

Three Labor frontbenchers tried to move a motion to force Mr Ruddock to explain the unit in Parliament this morning.

Labor's Anthony Albanese said he wanted to know details of the alleged unit's funding and staffing arrangements.

The Government used its numbers to vote the motion down."

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Saturday, June 16, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 8:21 am
"At the Gas and Oil Exposition in Calgary this week, Exxon Mobil executive Florian Osenberg told a rapt audience that the ongoing climate change crisis is no big deal because the dead people can provide "more feedstock."

In a rousing speech for 300 oilmen and oilwomen with partner Shepard Wolff, the executive reassured the crowd that, even if billions die from expected climate-change-related disasters, the industry will continue to prosper. The oil companies could "keep fuel flowing," said the execs, by turning all the dead people into oil.

Wolff "described the technology used to render human flesh into a new Exxon oil product called Vivoleum," according to a press release about the event. "3-D animations of the process brought it to life" and candles were lit in honor of an Exxon Mobil janitor who was the first to undergo the process. The speakers were quickly removed from the stage when it was learned, via a final video testimonial from the deceased, that the candles were the janitor.

Wolff defended his actions for waiting reporters, saying, "150,000 people already die from climate-change related effects every year. That's only going to go up - maybe way, way up. Will it all go to waste? That would be cruel." Calgary cops soon arrived, but could find nothing wrong as long as "the executives" agreed to leave the premises.

The executives being the Yes Men, of course. The Yes Men are two guys who impersonate executives from unlovable corporations, get their fake selves invited to speak at conferences, and embarrass the hell out of their targets. You can learn more at And don't forget to check out these hysterical pictures of the speech." —BRIAN FAIRBANKS

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Tuesday, June 05, 2007
posted by @netwurker at 8:33 pm
"The Bush administration has released a directive called the National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive. The directive released on May 9th, 2007 has gone almost unnoticed by the mainstream and alternative media. This is understandable considering the huge Ron Paul and immigration news but this story is equally as huge. In this directive, Bush declares that in the event of a “Catastrophic Emergency” the President will be entrusted with leading the activities to ensure constitutional government. The language in this directive would in effect make the President a dictator in the case of such an emergency."

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posted by @netwurker at 7:53 pm
"Chavs are the foot soldiers of corporate consumerism. They wear branded kit, congregate around halls of bland consumerism – shopping centers, cinemas, fast food outlets – and target anyone who stands out. Their chief weapon is not surprise, but a volley of inarticulate abuse and violence backed up by safety in numbers. Though they suffer from a dearth of so many intangibles in their young lives, one thing they do not know is real material poverty. They own expensive sports gear, expensive mobiles, watch Murdoch satellite channels on large flatscreen TVs, and aspire to a souped-up motor with a massive stereo system. They are not so much poor as culturally and imaginatively impoverished, because the main characteristic of Chavs is not social class but an utter lack of hope.

Once upon a time it was possible to grow up with a genuine pride in being working class. As the UK’s manufacturing sector declined, that pride has all but vanished. Shiny trinkets have bought off whole sections of the working class. That Chavs seek the more crass and vulgar ostentations of material wealth is just a refection having been colonized by consumer capitalism. The Chavs are Thatcher’s revenge."