Category Archives: Profiteering

Why Is Google Supporting a Climate-Denying Senator? : Compass

Senator Inhofe is notorious for his climate denial and disgust for clean energy. He regularly repeats misinformation and outright lies about climate science, going so far as to say that carbon pollution and warming temperatures are “beneficial to our economy and our environment” and calling climate change “the greatest hoax perpetuated on the American people.”

(Update: As of Wednesday afternoon, he even took to the Senate floor to mock and rail against the President’s climate action plan!)

Inhofe’s rhetoric doesn’t really mesh with a company whose chairman, Eric Schmidt, recently said, “You can lie about the effects of climate change, but eventually you’ll be seen as a liar.”

Google’s fundraiser for Senator Inhofe comes on the heels of the news that Google also donated $50,000 for a fundraising dinner for the anti-environment Competitive Enterprise Institute. CEI staff also deny climate disruption and the organization receives significant donations from the dirty fuels industry.

Yet Google’s donation to CEI even outdid donations from the Koch brothers!

This is no way for Google to lead on clean energy and climate action. Google’s support of the most outspoken climate denier in the Senate is backwards, out of place, and doesn’t stand with their strong clean energy credibility.

via Why Is Google Supporting a Climate-Denying Senator? : Compass.

House GOP Leaders Consider Splitting Farm Bill

Can’t for life of me figure out why GOP super-conservatives want to make people go hungry so badly. Are they so overcome by what they want to believe, that they can’t see who in their own districts would be hurt?

Billy Shore, the founder and CEO of the anti-hunger group Share Our Strength, says the split would make SNAP vulnerable when many families and children are dependent on it. Around one in seven people used food stamps last year.

“The concern is that (splitting the bill) would make it easier for the Republican leadership to find support for those cuts,” Shore said. “For a program that has worked so well for decades it feels a little short-sighted.”

Farm groups agreed.

Jon Doggett, a lobbyist for the National Corn Growers Association, said that farm groups will continue to need allies as rural areas decrease in population and fewer members of Congress are elected on farm issues. In addition to nutrition advocates, the bill also brings together agriculture and environmental groups who favor conservation measures in the bill that protect environmentally-sensitive farmland.

via House GOP Leaders Consider Splitting Farm Bill.

USDA Meat Inspectors Report Enforcement Actions for Quarter | Food Safety News

Meat inspection important for imports? You betcha! Look at the number of pounds imported in one three month period.

There was a spike in imported meat and poultry arriving in the U.S. during the quarter as 818,658,598 pounds were presented for inspection, up from 690,369,432 from the previous quarter. Likewise, imported egg products reached 2,439,721 pounds, up from 1,876,477 during the earlier period.

via USDA Meat Inspectors Report Enforcement Actions for Quarter | Food Safety News.

Indonesians rescued after days trapped in tree by tigers – Fairy tale

A group of Indonesian men who spent four days trapped up a tree by Sumatran tigers were rescued on Monday when wildlife experts induced the snarling creatures to leave, police said.

The five were dehydrated, hungry and terrified following their ordeal, which began on Thursday when they sought refuge in the forest canopy after an attack by the tigers, which left a sixth man dead.

They were hunting for rare wood used to make incense, but provoked the ire of the critically endangered animals when they accidentally killed a tiger cub in a trap set to catch antelopes and deer for food.

A team of 30 rescuers, including police and soldiers, reached the men deep in the jungle in the north of Sumatra island on Sunday – to find the ravenous tigers still circling the tree.

via Indonesians rescued after days trapped in tree by tigers.

More than likely, I believe, they were trying to capture a tiger and got caught at their own game.

Moscow desires Russian missile shield over the Baltic States – Estonian World

Despite the publicly-declared aspiration to cooperate with the US and NATO, including the area of anti-missile defence, Russia’s main goal remain unchanged; i. e., to avoid the deployment of NATO’s anti-aircraft and anti-missile elements on the territory bordering Russia. Russia suggests to NATO to divide Europe into sectors of anti-missile responsibility,” the report reads.

The report includes a map showing the Baltic States, Finland and large parts of Poland, Sweden and Norway as “a territory covered by Russia’s anti-missile elements.”

The explanation in Russian says that “the deployment of NATO’s anti-missile objects in this territory poses threats to our strategic nuclear capabilities.”

“If this proposal is implemented, the Baltic States and part of the Polish territory would fall under ‘Russia’s responsibility area’; i. e., NATO would have to hand over to this country part of its commitments to ensure security of its member countries, and the Alliance’s actions would be limited in the region. Currently, Russia is actively developing its anti-aircraft and anti-missile system, near the border with NATO. The system is already capable of detecting and destroying air targets several hundred kilometres from the Russian border, including the airspace of NATO member countries,” the document states.

via Moscow desires Russian missile shield over the Baltic States – Estonian World.

Drug-resistant bacteria found in workers at industrial farms | Vaccine News Daily

Drug-resistant bacteria associated with livestock were found in the noses of North Carolina industrial livestock workers, but not in workers handling antibiotic-free livestock, according to a study published on Tuesday in PLOS ONE.

A team of researchers confirmed earlier findings in Iowa by determining that the use of antibiotics in animals resulted in drug-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteria among industrial livestock workers in North Carolina. The team expressed concerns that the livestock-associated bacteria could go from farm workers to hospitals and the community settings, as the bacteria previously did in Europe.

The researchers based the study on interviews and nose swabs collected and analyzed from individuals working at two different types of livestock operations. The scientists tested the S. aureus isolated from nose swabs for resistance to multiple antibiotics.

“This study shows that these livestock-associated strains are present among workers at industrial livestock operations and that these strains are resistant not just to methicillin, but to multiple antibiotics — including antibiotics that are used to treat human infections,” Christopher Heaney, the corresponding author of the study, said.

via Drug-resistant bacteria found in workers at industrial farms | Vaccine News Daily.

IRIN Africa | Analysis: Barclays to cut Somalia’s remittance “lifeline” | Somalia | Economy | Food Security

Profiteering, as always, is the motive. Bank unwilling to spend money to assure regulators it is on up and up!

As a global bank, we must comply with the rules and regulations in all the jurisdictions in which we operate. The risk of financial crime is an important regulatory concern, and we take our responsibilities in relation to this very seriously,” said Daniel Hunter, spokesperson for Barclays.

“It is recognized that some money service businesses don’t have the proper checks in place to spot criminal activity and could unwittingly be facilitating money laundering and terrorist financing.”

via IRIN Africa | Analysis: Barclays to cut Somalia’s remittance “lifeline” | Somalia | Economy | Food Security.

Feds Clear Way for Domestic Horse Slaughter

This is how the President is going to protect wild animals?

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Federal officials cleared the way Friday for a return to domestic horse slaughter, granting a southeastern New Mexico company’s application to convert its cattle facility into a horse processing plant.

In approving Valley Meat Co.’s plans to produce horse meat, Department of Agriculture officials also indicated they would grant similar permits to companies in Iowa and Missouri as early as next week.

With the action, the Roswell, N.M., company becomes the first operation in the nation licensed to process horses into meat since Congress effectively banned the practice seven years ago.

But the company’s attorney said on Friday that he remained skeptical about Valley Meat Co.’s chances of opening any time soon, as the USDA must send an inspector to oversee operations and two animal rights groups have threated lawsuits to block the opening.

“This is very far from over,” attorney Blair Dunn said. “The company is going to plan to begin operating in July. But with the potential lawsuits and the USDA — they have been dragging their feet for a year — so to now believe they are going to start supplying inspectors, we’re not going to hold our breath.”

The company has been fighting for the permit for than a year, sparking an emotional debate over whether horses are livestock or domestic companions.

The decision comes more than six months after Valley Meat Co. sued the USDA, accusing it of intentionally delaying the process because the Obama administration opposes horse slaughter.

The Justice Department moved Friday to dismiss the case. Dunn said he would fight to keep it open until all issues, including attorneys’ fees, are resolved.

via Feds Clear Way for Domestic Horse Slaughter.

Superweeds and Herbicide Use On the Rise | Eat Drink Better

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) herbicide data analyzed in the report, Superweeds: How Biotech Crops Bolster the Pesticide Industry, shows that herbicide use on corn, cotton and soybeans has steadily grown by 26 percent in the years between 2001 and 2010. The widely used glyphosate herbicides, primarily Monsanto’s Roundup Ready line, have become ineffective as the weeds develop stronger resistance due to continuous over-exposure to the chemical. As glyphosate proves to be increasingly ineffective, more farmers are turning to more dangerous herbicides including 2,4-D [aka: Agent Orange]. Use of 2,4-D has increased since glyphosate-resistant crops became widespread, growing 90 percent between 2000 and 2012.

via Superweeds and Herbicide Use On the Rise | Eat Drink Better.

Our Global Warming Noose Is Cinched Tight With Koch Brothers’ Money: Gothamist

The pledge was created in 2008 by the Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity, and those who sign it promise to not spend any money fighting global warming unless that money is “balanced” with tax cuts.

While the pledge began with a marginal following, an energized turnout of conservative voters in the 2010 election swept 85 freshman Republicans into the House. Of those 85 Republicans, 76 signed the Koch pledge as candidates. And 57 of those 76 received campaign contributions from Koch Industries’ political action committee.

With the support of these newly elected Republicans, from 2011 to 2013, Congress passed increasingly smaller budgets for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), attempted to strip the agency of varying regulatory powers and discouraged policies to address climate change across multiple federal agencies, according to the Workshop’s analysis.

Koch puppets have testified before Congress about global warming six times in 2013 alone, most recently on May 7, when Paul Knappenberger of the Cato Institute told the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, “The more we learn, the less responsive it seems that the earth’s average temperature is to human carbon-dioxide emissions.”

via Our Global Warming Noose Is Cinched Tight With Koch Brothers' Money: Gothamist.