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Iran demands that IAEA end surveillance of its nuclear program

September 21st, 2018

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Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Shortly after ending its cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the government of Iran has now ordered the IAEA to discontinue some of its surveillance of Iran’s nuclear facilities. Tehran has also asked the agency to remove any and all signage from their nuclear sites by the end of next week.

This is in response to the Saturday resolution by the IAEA to report Iran to the United Nations Security Council, which was made without waiting for the director of the IAEA, Mohamed ElBaradei, chairman of the IAEA, to finish preparing a report on Iran’s civilian (and allegedly military) nuclear programs for the regular IAEA meeting scheduled for March 6. ElBaradei had given Iran until March to answer IAEA questions. By a vote of 27 to three (with five abstentions), and without the information in ElBaradei’s report planned for March 2006, the IAEA recommended that the matter of the Iranian nuclear program be brought before the Security Council.

The recommendation claims that there are serious concerns about Iranian nuclear aims, and the agency does not have confidence that the program is intended solely for civilian or other non-military use. Although the meeting was taken without waiting for ElBaradei’s March report, the recommendation requests ElBaradei to make his report anyway, including a list of “steps Iran needs to take to dispel suspicions about its nuclear ambitions” by March 6.

The IAEA’s resolution calls for Iran to reinstate a freeze on its nuclear programs, consider ending construction of a plutonium-producing heavy water reactor, and to continue allowing the IAEA’s purposes and actions in Iran. However, the council will not implement any further action until ElBaradei makes his full report on March 6.

ElBaradei also reported to the IAEA Monday that Iran would also demand a reduction in the amount of facilities inspections from the agency, and that they would discontinue their agreement to the Additional Protocol of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) if the agency reported Iran to the Security Council. This protocol entitles the IAEA to hold unannounced inspections of facilities, increased surveillance capability, and placing IAEA seals on nuclear equipment.

Other diplomatic ventures are being planned. On February 16, Iranian officials will meet with the Russian government in Moscow to discuss the possibility of Russia enriching uranium for export to Iran in exchange for a halting of its nuclear enrichment program. And Wang Guangya, China’s ambassador to the UN, said Monday that “Even with the adoption of this IAEA resolution, it is the belief of most of the members there that a diplomatic solution is the way out within the framework of the IAEA.”

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Vitamin D deficiency more common, serious, than thought

September 21st, 2018

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Friday, November 2, 2007

Two scientists working at McGill University in Canada, reporting on their research and the research of other scientists, state in Scientific American that Vitamin D may have many uses in the human body besides building strong bones.

According to the scientists, Luz E. Tavera-Mendoza and John H. White, Vitamin D intake may also be beneficial in the prevention of cancer, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, and fighting tuberculosis, influenza and inflammatory bowel disease. The researchers say that there is an emerging “widespread consensus” among experts that a large part of the population has levels of Vitamin D in their bodies that is well below optimal concentrations for health, particularly in temperate regions, due to decreased sunlight and or less time outdoors, and during or just after the winter months. One study indicated that as many as 92% of adolescent girls in Northern Europe may have deficient levels of Vitamin D and 37% have severely deficient levels.

The problem is far worse among African-Americans than Americans with lighter skin. Almost half of African-American women may be seriously Vitamin D deficient, with presumably still another fraction deficient. Furthermore, the authors say researchers at Harvard University and elsewhere believe the FDA minimum recommended daily allowance of Vitamin D is far too low. The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) ranges from 200 to 600 International Units (IU). In fact, the authors themselves take Vitamin D supplements. The first author takes 1000 IU during wintertime and the second author takes 5,000 IU in wintertime. They do caution, however, that there is a level at which Vitamin D becomes toxic.

Similar research has also been recently performed by researchers at the Queensland University of Technology who found that many elderly were likely not getting sufficient Vitamin D due in part to insufficient exposure to the sun.

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Wikinews interviews Australian Statistician Brian Pink

September 21st, 2018

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Monday, April 7, 2008

The Australian Bureau of Statistics is responsible for some of Australia’s largest surveys, including the Census of Population and Housing, held every five years. At its head is the Australian Statistician. The current Statistician, Brian Pink, started in his position on March 5, 2007, following the retirement of predecessor Dennis Trewin. Wikinews recently caught up with Brian Pink to talk with him about his first year in the position, as well as his previous tenure as Government Statistician at Statistics New Zealand, and the state of mathematical education in Australia.

((WikiNews)) : Good afternoon.

Brian Pink: Good afternoon.

((WN)) : And congratulations on spending a year as Australian Statistician.

BP: Yes, it’s gone very quickly. (laughs)
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Seeds placed in Norwegian vault as agricultural ‘insurance policy’

September 21st, 2018

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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a vault containing millions of seeds from all over the world, saw its first deposits on Tuesday. Located 800 kilometers from the North Pole on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, the vault has been referred to by European Commission president José Manuel Barroso as a “frozen Garden of Eden“. It is intended to preserve crop supplies and secure biological diversity in the event of a worldwide disaster.

“The opening of the seed vault marks a historic turning point in safeguarding the world’s crop diversity,” said Cary Fowler, executive director of the Global Crop Diversity Trust which is in charge of collecting the seed samples. The Norwegian government, who owns the bank, built it at a cost of $9.1 million.

At the opening ceremony, 100 million seeds from 268,000 samples were placed inside the vault, where there is room for over 2 billion seeds. Each of the samples originated from a different farm or field, in order to best ensure biological diversity. These crop seeds included such staples as rice, potatoes, barley, lettuce, maize, sorghum, and wheat. No genetically modified crops were included. (Beyond politics they are generally sterile so of no use.)

It is very important for Africa to store seeds here because anything can happen to our national seed banks.

Constructed deep inside a mountain and protected by concrete walls, the “doomsday vault” is designed to withstand earthquakes, nuclear warfare, and floods resulting from global warming. Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg called it an “insurance policy” against such threats.

With air-conditioned temperatures of -18 degrees Celsius, experts say the seeds could last for an entire millennium. Some crops will be able to last longer, like sorghum, which the Global Crop Diversity Trust says can last almost 20 millenniums. Even if the refrigeration system fails, the vaults are expected to stay frozen for 200 years.

The Prime Minister said, “With climate change and other forces threatening the diversity of life that sustains our planet, Norway is proud to be playing a central role in creating a facility capable of protecting what are not just seeds, but the fundamental building blocks of human civilization.” Stoltenberg, along with Kenyan Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai, made the first deposit of rice to the vault.

“It is very important for Africa to store seeds here because anything can happen to our national seed banks,” Maathai said. The vault will operate as a bank, allowing countries to use their deposited seeds free of charge. It will also serve as a backup to the thousands of other seed banks around the world.

“Crop diversity will soon prove to be our most potent and indispensable resource for addressing climate change, water and energy supply constraints and for meeting the food needs of a growing population,” Cary Fowler said.

U.S. manufacturer General Motors seeks bankruptcy protection

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U.S. manufacturer General Motors seeks bankruptcy protection

September 18th, 2018

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Monday, June 1, 2009

United States automobile manufacturing firm General Motors filed for bankruptcy and Chapter 11 protection from its creditors at 12:00 UTC Monday, in a Manhattan, New York federal bankruptcy court. This was the largest bankruptcy filing for a U.S. manufacturing company, and with declared assets of $82.29 billion and a debt of $172.81 billion, and the fourth largest bankruptcy filing in recent U.S. history — after the bankruptcies of Lehman Brothers ($691.06 billion), Washington Mutual ($327.91 billion), and WorldCom ($103.91 billion).

The filing, expected to be the first of many, was for a New York GM affiliate, Chevrolet-Saturn of Harlem Incorporated. Numbered 09-50026, it named GM as a debtor in possession, and was filed before judge Robert Gerber.

GM is to be represented throughout the filing process by Weil Gotshal & Manges, a New York law firm specializing in bankruptcy.

The chief restructuring officer, named in the filing, is to be Al Koch, a managing director at AlixPartners LLP in New York, who will report directly to Fritz Henderson, the Chief Executive Officer of General Motors.

In its bankruptcy petition, GM listed its primary creditors as:

Name Amount owed (USD millions)
Wilmington Trust 22,000
United Auto Workers union (UAW) 20,560
Deutsche Bank 4,440

The amount owed to UAW excludes “approximately $9.4 billion corresponding to the GM Internal VEBA“. USD22,760 millions are owed to bondholders.

Analysts have observed that the effect of the bankruptcy filing on the U.S. economy is not expected to be as major as it once would have been. One such voice, Mark Zandy, an economist at Moody’s Economy.com, commented that “Bankruptcy now is irrelevant in terms of the economic consequence of what’s happening to GM.” Such analysts believe that the economic impact of GM’s problems has already been felt, with its effects on parts suppliers and employment. They also believe that GM’s programme of accelerated payments, and its participation in a U.S. Treasury program to ensure prompt payments to parts manufacturers, will have cushioned the effect of the bankruptcy itself.

Speaking on Bloomberg Radio, David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, stated that the fragility of the parts suppliers, the loss of whom would threaten the entire automobile manufacturing industry, was of more immediate concern than the GM bankruptcy.

Also filing for chapter 11 protection today were Saturn LLC and Saturn Distribution Corporation, subsidiary companies of General Motors.

As a consequence of the bankruptcy, General Motors Corporation (GM.N) was removed from the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and was replaced by Cisco Systems (CSCO.O), these changes scheduled by Dow Jones & Company to take effect from the opening of trading on June 8.

Australian government provides $15.8 million for North Adelaide Technical College

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Australian government provides $15.8 million for North Adelaide Technical College

September 17th, 2018

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Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Australian Minister for Vocational Education and Training, Gary Hardgrave has announced the government will provide AU$15.8 million to establish an Australian Technical College in North Adelaide. The minister said the government was entering into a partnership with the Archdiocese of Adelaide and consortium of industrial and manufacturing companies.

The North Adelaide college will be located in Elizabeth and be operated as an independent non-government school. The college is one of 25 to be established across the country.

Enrolments at the college will begin in 2007 and will offer courses in areas where identified skills shortages exist in the North Adelaide region, specifically – engineering, construction, electronics and cooking.

Mr Hardgrave said that the proposed college had been popular among the North Adelaide business community. “This important initiative has been well received by North Adelaide business and industry, and will help to address skills needs and provide opportunities for those in greatest need, including a lot of Indigenous students in the region,” Mr Hardgrave said.

“The fact that this College is being led by local employers, local government and other key stakeholders, means it will be truly industry and community driven,” he said.

Australian Technical Colleges were established to cater for year 11 and 12 students who wish to do an apprenticeship as part of their school education.

The Australian Education Union has expressed a number of concerns about the model put forward by the government. In a report, they claim that trade facilities at TAFE colleges (operated by state governments) will deteriorate as funding is diverted to the ATCs. The union is also concerned that ATCs are supposed to be selective VET schools. According to the union they will have selective entry and preferential funding. It is feared that teachers will be lured away from schools and TAFE colleges to higher paid positions in ATCs.

The Education Union suggested that the government invest in schools that already offer vocational education programs.

US lawmakers approve bill taxing executive bonuses

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US lawmakers approve bill taxing executive bonuses

September 17th, 2018

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Friday, March 20, 2009

The United States House of Representatives approved a measure on Thursday to impose a heavy tax on bonuses to executives from companies that have been bailed out by the government. The bill was passed by a margin of 328-93.

Under the bill, executives making over US$250,000 a year would be charged a 90% tax on bonuses. The tax would apply to firms that have been given at least $5 billion in aid from the government.

The move comes after recent outrage at American International Group (AIG), which gave out $165 million in bonuses to its top executives after receiving no more than $180 billion in government bailouts. AIG has said that the bonuses had to be given out, as the company was legally required by contract to do so.

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Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House, said that the bill was necessary because of the bad judgment shown by firms who received bailouts from the government.

“We must stabilize the financial system in order to strengthen our economy and create jobs. We must also protect the American taxpayer from executives who would use their companies’ second chances as opportunities for private gain. Because they could not use sound judgment in the use of taxpayer funds, these AIG executives will pay the Treasury in the form of this tax,” said Pelosi to reporters following the House vote.

The Senate is expected to vote upon a similar version of the bill. If approved, the differences between the two versions would have to be bridged before it could be signed into law.

Debt Burdens Are Made Lighter If Court Assistance Is Sought

September 14th, 2018

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By Stewart Wrighter

Most people, who find that they are sinking into a debt pit, will often hide this fact from those around them. They will often try to keep up with their friends and family who have no money worries to speak of. This is often what takes them over the edge and they are face to face with the fact that they may lose everything that they have worked hard for. When people even suspect that the situation is deteriorating, the first thing that they should do is to seek advice from a bankruptcy lawyer. Indeed, there are many of these experts to be found and it is simple to find them by putting the words bankruptcy attorney into a search engine and perusing the results.

We are all aware of how easy it is to spend money. Those odd lunches with the guys, or those regular coffee runs to the local in place often add up to a substantial amount of money over the year. This is all very well, of course, as long as there is money coming in to cover it. However, the tendency these days is to live beyond what we can afford just so that others can see that we have made it.

This I want everything and I want it now attitude has put many people into great problems that they cannot get out of unless there is a definite attitude change. Even kids who are given everything often do not realize the value of money so we are raising a generation which will not be able to manage their own finances for sure.

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Indeed, earlier generations did not have as many problems as ours because they were not usually as affluent as the people are today. The need to cut corners was instilled in them and, consequently, their children, and this seemed to sustain us well into older life. However, over the past couple of decades, the necessity to show off has permeated our society and this is where the problems begin.

Buying that house which stretched the budget to breaking point, or having three cars in the drive, meant that the debt burden was enormous even for those who had a great career. When the economic downturn hit, most people were caught out and did not know how to manage on a much tighter budget for sure.

However, the government realized that a lot of people were caught in the debt trap which meant that they would have to take care of more than the economy could manage. This gave rise to Chapters 7 and 13 which allowed the courts to wipe off or restructure debts so that people could take a breather.

The expert in this particular field knows how to present their cases to the court and will also know about the means testing that goes on too. Armed with this knowledge, most people can climb out of debt slowly but surely and they will probably still have their homes to live in as well.

About the Author: Stewart Wrighter recently spent time researching bankruptcy with the help of a

bankruptcy attorney Dallas

. He hired a

Dallas bankruptcy lawyer

to help with his brothers case.

Source:

isnare.com

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Hewlett-Packard to cut 9,000 jobs in $1 billion restructuring plan

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Hewlett-Packard to cut 9,000 jobs in $1 billion restructuring plan

September 9th, 2018

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Hewlett-Packard (HP) expects to lose 9,000 jobs between now and 2013 in a US$1 billion (£686m) restructuring plan.

The 9,000 jobs losses will be in the enterprise services division, but the company expects to add about 6,000 employees to its sales and delivery teams.

HP commented in a statement, “As a result of productivity gains and automation, HP expects to eliminate roughly 9,000 positions over a multi-year period to reinvest for further growth and to increase shareholder value”

HP will invest in fully automated data centers as it makes operational changes in its Internet technology services business. HP said the restructuring will generate savings of $500–700 million (about €407–571 million) in net savings after reinvestment.

Hewlett-Packard has around 300,000 employees and is the world’s largest technology company by sales. HP is an American multinational information technology corporation headquartered in Palo Alto, California.

Filing Claims Under The Provisions Of Uninsured Motorists/ Underinsured Motorists In Illinois

September 5th, 2018

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By Ed Sneineh

Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage (UM) – Refers to the mandatory coverage that your auto policy provides for you for your bodily injury caused by a hit-and-run driver or an at-fault driver who has no auto liability insurance. The State of Illinois law requires uninsured motorist limits of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident. For additional premium, you may buy higher limits to pay for claims that exceed those amounts.

Uninsured Motorist Property Damage (UM PD): This is an optional coverage. It provides coverage up to a specific amount, to your vehicle, in the even you were hit by someone who is legally insured. Since this is a partial physical damage coverage on your vehicle then you cannot and should not purchase it if you are also getting comprehensive and collision (there will be overlap in coverage.) Some people refer to a liability policy with (UM PD) as Liability Plus insurance.

Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury Insurance (UIM) – This is an optional coverage that provides bodily injury equal to that in the UM, in the event that you are injured in an accident that is not your fault and the other person has insurance, but his/her insurance was not enough to cover all the bodily injuries you sustained. Insurers do not have to offer this coverage at the basic mandatory liability limits of 20,000/40,000. In the even the client chose to have higher limits, the insurer must offer this coverage at the same level of UM.

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That is why getting an affordable auto insurance requires more than just looking for the cheapest quote. The limits on bodily injury for you is in question.

What can you do if you were hit by an uninsured motorist who was at fault in the crash? Can something be done to help you collect damages?

If you have a private policy you should submit a claim to your private insurer and they will help you collect for the damages. In this case you have to pay for the deductible and once your insurance company collects for damages they will refund you for the deductible that you paid.

You can also submit an Illinois Crash Report to the Illinois Department of Transportation Accident Report Office, 3215 Executive Park Drive, Springfield, Illinois 62766, Phone 217-782-4516. In the report you should indicate that the party was uninsured and request that the case be certified to the Secretary of State for suspension under the Safety and Financial Responsibility Law. Once the case is verified and the accident report is certified, the state will suspend the driver’s license of the at-fault uninsured driver and the license plates of the uninsured owner involved in the crash. The suspension will remain in effect until your reach an agreement with the other uninsured motorist about paying for your bodily injury/ property damages, or until other requirements set by statute are met.

Another option is to take a legal action. You can file a court judgment against the uninsured motorist. If the judgment remains unsatisfied for 30 days, you may submit it to the State of Illinois office for suspension. If you need more information please call one of our agents, or contact the State of Illinois, Safety and Financial Responsibility Section, 2701 S. Dirksen Parkway, Springfield, Illinois 62723, phone 217-782-3720.

About the Author: Ed Sneineh is the Founder of Insurance Navy, a chain of agencies in Illinois, providing affordable

auto insurance quotes

in Illinois and Northwest Indiana

Source:

isnare.com

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