Other Sources

Journalist Veronique Robert dies of Mosul blast wounds

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 10:28am
France Television says Robert died from wounds suffered in a landmine blast that killed two of her colleagues in Mosul.

Gargash: Gulf states don't seek Qatar 'regime change'

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:51am
UAE minister also says if demands are not met the 'alternative is not escalation', but the 'parting of ways'.

WATCH: CNN host confronts Jill Stein over why she met with Putin in Russia — and she blames the Democrats

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:41am
Appearing on CNN Saturday morning, Green Party candidate Jill Stein gave a rambling explanation for why she met Russian President Vladimir Putin before the election saying no one cared about it until after former Secretary Hillary Clinton lost the 2016 election. Speaking with host Michael Smerconish...

How Israel gains from Egypt-Saudi Red Sea islands deal

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:34am
Tel Aviv could use diplomatic capital gained in its approval of Tiran and Sanafir deal for support on Palestinian issue.

New Zealand 30-15 Lions: Tourists need to be more physical - Warren Gatland

BBC News - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:24am
The British and Irish Lions need to be "more physical" after the opening Test defeat by New Zealand, says head coach Warren Gatland.

Federal Judge orders Ivanka Trump to testify over ‘knockoff’ shoe design

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:15am
Senior White House aide Ivanka Trump has been ordered to testify in a lawsuit with an Italian shoemaker. U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled Friday against lawyers for the first daughter who had sought to shield her from being deposed in the case, the Associated Press reported. Aquazzura Ita...

Meet Gaza's youngest bird hunter

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 9:10am
Eleven-year-old Nasser Taeimah has risked Israeli fire in order to hone his craft.

Vietnam's imperiled bloggers

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:58am
We examine the government's attempts to silence the country's bloggers.

Creationist Ken Ham blames atheists and ‘fake news’ for failing Ark Encounter theme park

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:53am
The organization behind a tax-payer subsidized “replica” of Noah’s Ark in Kentucky is blaming atheists for tax-payers getting fleeced by the project. Creationist Ken Ham built the $92 million Ark Encounter project in Williamstown, Kentucky. The “dismal failure” of the p...

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop website ridiculed again

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:34am
The Oscar-winning actress Gwyneth Paltrow’s brainchild, the lifestyle website Goop, is usually known for its controversial health advice like vaginal steaming and this time too, it is drawing negative attention for its wellness stickers. The stickers allegedly contain materials used in NASA sp...

Charlie Sheen sued by ex-girlfriend over HIV status

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:25am
Charlie Sheen was sued by his ex-girlfriend on Thursday for exposing her to HIV by having unprotected sex without telling her he was HIV positive. This was not the first time Sheen has been sued over his HIV positive status. Sheen, who consistently maintained to be the highest paid person on televis...

How is Canada legalizing marijuana?

The Raw Story - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:23am
Next year Canada will hit a high no other G7 country has reached: legalizing marijuana as a recreational drug. Fulfilling a campaign promise, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party passed a bill easing restrictions in March—the drug has been available for specialized medical use from di...

New Zealand 30-15 British and Irish Lions: World champions rise to land knockout blow

BBC News - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:18am
For a moment, the Lions seemed to have New Zealand on the ropes - but then reality overcame hype, writes Tom Fordyce.

Saudi-led demands not 'reasonable or actionable': Qatar

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 8:02am
Qatar is reviewing the document issued by Saudi-led bloc of Arab countries and preparing 'an appropriate response'.

Why Grenfell Tower Burned: Regulators Put Cost Before Safety

World News (NY Times) - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 7:53am
The incineration of the 24-story London high rise, the deadliest fire in Britain in more than a century, was rooted in a regulatory breakdown.

South Korea Leader Hopes for Unified Olympic Team With the North

World News (NY Times) - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 7:31am
If the North and the South form a team for the Winter Games next year, it would be a major milestone in inter-Korean relations.

Grenfell tragedy exposes UK media's shortfall

Al Jazeera - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 7:30am
Is the mainstream media any better at dealing with marginalised communities than government are?

Immigration Moves Front and Center in Italy’s Local Elections

World News (NY Times) - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 3:41am
Parties and politicians took a tougher stance ahead voting on Sunday, from Lampedusa in the south to Lake Como, where the Swiss border beckons migrants.

Trump’s attack on a Fair Internet Threatens Free Speech

Informed Comment - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 3:18am

By Corynne McSherry | Electronic Frontier Foundation | – –

Several US senators spoke out this week on the importance of net neutrality to innovation and free speech. They are right. The Internet has become our public square, our newspaper, our megaphone. The Federal Communications Commission is trying to turn it in something more akin to commercial cable TV, and we all have to work together to stop it.

What makes the Internet revolutionary is the ability of every user to create news and culture and participate in conversations with people all across the globe. Mass consumption of entertainment products may be big business and may even help drive adoption, but it’s not new and empowering like the opportunity to participate in speech on an infinite variety of topics. As the Supreme Court recently observed, Internet platforms “can provide perhaps the most powerful mechanism available to a private citizen to make his or her voice heard.” Seven in ten American adults regularly use at least one Internet social networking service. Facebook alone has more than 1.79 billion monthly active users around the world. Twitter has over 310 million monthly active users who publish more than 500 million tweets each day. Instagram has over 600 million monthly users who upload over 95 million photos every day. Snapchat has over 100 million daily users who send and watch over 10 billion videos per day. And that’s just a small sampling of the commercial Internet platforms many of us use everyday. Millions more log into sites like Wikipedia, the Internet Archive, news outlets, government services and local libraries to access a wealth of information and culture.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai is threatening to eliminate net neutrality protections altogether by dismantling the legal structure on which they depend

Most importantly, the Internet has played an increasingly vital role in political expression and organizing. Conservative activists from around the country coalesced over various social networking platforms to form the Tea Party movement. The Black Lives Matter movement used Twitter to help spark a national conversation on racial inequality. The Standing Rock Sioux used Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube to galvanize national support for their protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline and its threat to their drinking water. Earlier this year organizers used Facebook and Twitter to share information, plan events, and motivate participation in the Women’s March.

What does this have to do with net neutrality? Simple: all of these services depend the existence of open communications protocols that let us innovate without having to ask permission from any company or government.

The Internet was built on the simple but powerful idea that while you may need to pay a service provider for Internet access, that provider doesn’t get to shape what you access – or who has access to you. Anyone who wants to offer a new Internet service can, without paying extra fees to any provider. Users, in turn, can make their own choices about which services they want to use – including the next Twitter/Facebook/Snapchat that’s being created in someone’s basement right now.

In 2014, that powerful idea motivated millions of Internet users to band together and demand that the FCC enact clear, legally sound rules to prevent broadband providers from taking advantage of their power as gatekeepers to engage in unfair practices like paid prioritization, blocking, and other forms of data discrimination. We know that such practices could transform this extraordinary engine for civic discourse into something more like cable TV, where providers and content owners bargain over what content will be available at full speed and what will be throttled.

In 2015, the FCC answered our call and adopted the Open Internet Order to protect net neutrality. In 2016, the DC Circuit Court of Appeal upheld it – in contrast to the efforts of prior FCCs that operated on shaky legal theories. But the new FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai, wants to reverse course. He’s calling on the public to comment on whether we even need open Internet rules in the first place, and threatening to eliminate net neutrality protections altogether by dismantling the legal structure on which they depend, despite widespread public support for those protections and despite the fact that net neutrality has been the rule of the Internet from its inception, backed by a combination of legal requirements and cultural norms that are now in danger of being eliminated.

We can’t let that happen. We still have an open Internet that lets us make ourselves heard, so Let’s Make. Ourselves. Heard. The millions of Internet users who fought for Net Neutrality in 2014, and the millions more who have been mobilized in the intervening years, need to send a simple message to Chairman Pai and his backers in Congress and the Trump Administration: Don’t let big cable mess with our Internet.

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Related video added by Juan Cole:

Net Neutrality II: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)

Green France: Macron bans Fracking and welcomes US renewables Scientists fleeing Trump

Informed Comment - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 - 2:58am

By Juan Cole | (Informed Comment) | – –

The French government wants to steal increasingly unemployed US green energy scientists, who are being systematically defunded by the Trump administration.

After Trump pulled out of the Paris accords, Macron addressed US professionals:

“To all scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, responsible citizens who were disappointed by the decision of the president of the United States, I want to say that they will find in France a second homeland . . . I call on them: come and work here with us. To work together on concrete solutions for our climate, our environment. I can assure you, France will not give up the fight.”

At the same time, the Macron government has ambitious plans to make France a green energy powerhouse and major research hub, in hopes of capturing the trillions of dollars the renewables sector will generate. In short, who will invent the next inexpensive and efficient solar panel? The US, France or China? Whoever does will make a killing.

At the same time, French environment minister Nicolas Hulot (an actual environmentalist) announced that he France will ban any new fracking or exploration for oil, gas or coal on French soil. Now that’s what it is like to belong to a country not run by the CEO of Exxon Mobil.

France has a relatively low carbon footprint because 78% of its electricity is generated by some 58 nuclear power plants. Many of these plants are aging, however, and Macron will close a lot, reducing the nuclear share of electricity production to 50% only a few years from now (2025) Likewise, the French government hopes to see all coal plants in the country closed by 2022!

Macron and Hulot want to make up the shortfall with greater energy efficiency (many French buildings don’t have insulation), by encouraging 10% of work days to be telecommuting from home, and by making a massive push for wind and solar energy.

French wind power grew 7% last year, but the plan is for that pace to pick up substantially through government policy. It is now toward 5% of French electricity production.

France wants to build 2 gigawatts worth of small-scale solar installations.

France currently gets 11% of its electricity from renewables, but wants that proportion to be 23% by 2023– more than doubling in 5 years. France has applied to the EU to add 17 gigawatts of clean power over the next 7 years at a cost of $1.1 billion.

France is about to embark on the kind of “energy switch” Germany has long devoted itself to, with massive consequences for French society, science,engineering and the economy. The twentieth century was cruel to French military defenses, but this is a war where France will proudly be in the forefront, and winning, perhaps more than the fossil-fuel addicted US.


Related video:

Construction of PV power plant in Cestas, France

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