Report urges Kenya to ban plastic bags

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Report urges Kenya to ban plastic bags
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Wednesday, March 9, 2005File:Plastic bag stock sized.jpg

They are cheap, useful, and very plentiful, and that is exactly the problem, according to researchers. A report issued on Feb. 23 by a cadre of environment and economics researchers suggested that Kenya should ban the common plastic bag that one gets at the checkout counter of grocery stores, and place a levy on other plastic bags, all to combat the country’s environmental problems stemming from the bags’ popularity.

Posted on March 19th 2019 in Uncategorized

2006 “Stolenwealth” Games to confront Commonwealth Games in Melbourne

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2006 “Stolenwealth” Games to confront Commonwealth Games in Melbourne
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Friday, March 3, 2006

The possibility of large-scale protests in the face of the 3,000 journalists covering the Melbourne 2006 Commonwealth Games, has event organisers and the Government worried.

The group “Black GST” – which represents Indigenous Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty – are planning demonstrations at prominent Games events unless the Government agrees to a range of demands including an end to Aboriginal genocide, Aboriginal Sovereignty and the signing of a treaty.

The Black GST say they hope the focus of the world’s media will draw attention to the plight of indigenous Australians during the Games. Organisers say supporters are converging from across Australia and from overseas. Organisers say up to 20,000 people may take part in talks, rallies, colourful protests and many cultural festivities designed to pressure the Federal Government on Indigeneous rights issues. They want the Government to provide a temporary campsite for the supporters, saying “organised chaos was better than disorganised chaos.”

The 2006 Stolenwealth Games convergence, described by organisers as the “cultural festival of the 2006 Commonwealth Games,” was virtually opened on March 2nd with the launch of the official “Stolenwealth Games” website. Scoop Independent News and Perth Indymedia reported that the launch was held at Federation Square in Melbourne. The site contents were projected via wireless laptop by the Stolenwealth Games General Manager, and a tour of the website was given on the big screen. He said “overwhelming amusement was the response from the audience.” The group say permanent access points to the website are being set up at public internet facilities across Victoria during the coming weeks.

“Interest in the Stolenwealth Games is building all over the world and this fresh, exciting and contemporary site will draw in people from Stolenwealth Nations around the globe to find out about the latest news and events,” said a Stolenwealth Games spokesperson. “We have been getting many requests from around the world wanting to know about the Stolenwealth Games. We have provided many ways that individuals and organisations can support the campaign by spreading the word.”

The Victorian Traditional Owner Land Justice Group (VTOLJG) which represents the first nation groups of Victoria, has announced its support to boycott the 2006 Commonwealth Games until the Government “recognises Traditional Owner rights.” The group asserts that culture has been misappropriated in preparation for the Games.

Organisers of the campaign say they welcome the formal support from the Traditional Owners. “While some seek to divide and discredit Indigenous Australia, this support is further evidence that the Aboriginal people are united in opposition to the ongoing criminal genocide that is being perpetrated against the Aboriginal people” said Black GST supporter and Aboriginal Elder, Robbie Thorpe.

“We now have endorsement from the VTOLJG and the Aboriginal Tent Embassy for the aims and objectives of the Campaign and we are looking forward to hosting all indigenous and non-indigenous supporters from across Australia in March,” he said. The Black GST group have said “the convergence will be held as a peaceful, family-focussed demonstration against genocide, and for the restoration of sovereignty and the negotiations towards a Treaty.”

But the campaign has received flak in mainstream media, such as Melbourne’s Herald Sun, who wrote: “the proposal to allow BlackGST to set up an Aboriginal tent embassy at a site well away from the Commonwealth Games will be interpreted by some as the State Government caving in to a radical protest group. A major concern for the Government… is to protect the event from disruption… no chances should be taken…”

The Black GST has been planning the convergence for months, calling for Aboriginal people and their supporters to converge on Melbourne. The Melbourne-based Indigenous rights group have called on thousands of people concerned about the plight of indigenous Australians to converge on Melbourne during the Games, which they have dubbed “the Stolenwealth Games”. But the choice of Kings Domain has made conflict almost inevitable, as the area is one of the areas gazetted by the State Government as a “Games management zone”.

Under the Commonwealth Games Arrangements Act, any area gazetted as a management zone is subject to a range of specific laws – including bans on protesting, creating a disturbance and other activities. The protest bans will be in effect at different times and places, and offenders can be arrested. A spokeswoman for the Black GST, which advocates peaceful protest, said the site had been chosen because it was close to where the Queen will stay on March 15. “We figured that she is only in Melbourne for 27 hours or something like that so we thought we would make it easy for her to come next door and see us,” she said. “We are a very open, welcoming group, so she will be welcome to come and join us.”

Kings Domain is the burial site for 38 indigenous forefathers of Victoria. Black GST elder, Targan, said trade union groups have offered to install infrastructure at the site. The group initially worked with the State Government to find a suitable camp site, but the relationship broke down when the Government failed to meet a deadline imposed by the protesters. “While we are disappointed the ministers were not able to meet deadline on our request, we thank them for their constructive approach towards negotiations and the open-door policy exercised,” said Targan.

A spokesman for Games Minister Justin Madden said the Government was still investigating other sites. Victoria Police Games security commander Brendan Bannan said he was not convinced the Black GST represented the views of most indigenous people. “We are dealing with the Aboriginal community and they don’t seem to support it at all … the wider Aboriginal community don’t support disruption to the Games at all,” he said.

The Government was told that Black GST supporters would camp in Fitzroy Gardens and other city parks should it fail to nominate a site. A spokesman for Aboriginal Affairs Minister Gavan Jennings said the Government was taking the issue seriously, but had not been able to finalise a campsite before the deadline.

Under special Games laws, people protesting or causing a disturbance in “Games management zones” can be arrested and fined. While prominent public spaces such as Federation Square, Birrarung Marr, Albert Park and the Alexandra Gardens fall under the legislation, such tough anti-protest laws cannot be enforced in the nearby Fitzroy Gardens.

Games chairman Ron Walker has urged the group to choose another date for its protest march through the city, which is currently planned to coincide with the opening ceremony on March 15. The group believes that an opportunity to gain attention for indigenous issues was lost at the Sydney Olympics and has vowed to make a highly visible presence at the Games.

The Black GST said the Australian Aboriginal Tent Embassy’s sacred flame, burning over many years at the Canberra site will be carried to Melbourne before the Games, and its arrival would mark the opening of the protest camp from where a march will proceed to the MCG before the Opening Ceremony.

Black GST claims supporters from all over Australia, including three busloads from the West Australian Land Council, will gather in Melbourne during the Games for peaceful protests.

Aboriginal Affairs Minister Gavin Jennings had offered Victoria Park to the protesters. Victoria Park, former home of Collingwood Football Club, where one of the strongest statements of Aboriginal pride, when St Kilda star Nicky Winmar in 1993 raised his jumper and pointed to his bare chest after racial taunts from the Collingwood crowd.

Black GST, which has labelled the Games the Stolenwealth Games, said the State Government had failed to find a suitable venue. Black GST may encourage protesters to camp in prominent parks such as Fitzroy Gardens and Treasury Gardens. Graffiti supporting the action has also appeared in central Melbourne.

Melbourne City councillor Fraser Brindley has offered his home to the Black GST organisers. “I offered my home up to people who are organising visitors to come to the Games,” he said. Cr Brindley will be overseas when the Commonwealth Games are held and has offered the free accommodation at his flat at Parkville. He said he agreed with the protesters’ view that treaties needed to be signed with indigenous Australians. “I’m offering it up to the indigenous people who are coming to remind Her Majesty that her Empire took this land from them,” said Cr Brindlley. Nationals leader Peter Ryan said: “This extremist group has no part in the Australian community.” Melbourne councillor Peter Clarke said the actions were embarrassing and that he would try to discourage him. “It’s not in the spirit of the Games,” he said.

Aboriginal elder, Targan, said the possibility of securing Victoria Park was delightfully ironic. “There’s a lot of irony going on,” Targan, 53, a PhD student at Melbourne University, said. “GST stands for Genocide, Sovereignty and Treaty. We want the genocide of our people to stop; we want some sovereignty over traditional land, certainly how it is used, and we want a treaty with the government,” Targan said.

Posted on March 19th 2019 in Uncategorized

SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule docks with International Space Station

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SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule docks with International Space Station
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Tuesday, March 5, 2019

On Sunday, the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule successfully docked with the International Space Station in orbit around the Earth. Although the Crew Dragon was carrying only cargo and a mannequin equipped with sensors, this was the first time since the retirement of the space shuttles in 2011 a United States spacecraft capable of carrying humans has made it to the station.

Most of the docking process was automatic by the capsule, though the crew of the ISS were able to send the capsule commands to perform simple movements. Previous SpaceX pods have relied on the station’s own robotic arm apparatus to take hold of them.

At 2:49 a.m. local time (7:49 a.m. UTC) on Saturday morning, the Crew Dragon was launched via a Falcon 9 rocket from the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida in the southeastern United States.

Crew Dragon has enough room for seven people but on this occasion carried only a mannequin, nicknamed “Ripley” for Sigourney Weaver’s character in the film Alien. The Crew Dragon is scheduled to remain at the station during the week and return to Earth on Friday.

Bill Gerstenmaier of NASA spoke of the collaboration between his agency and SpaceX: “It’s fun working with a new partner that approaches the problem in a slightly different way. They don’t carry the same background that we did in NASA, and they don’t approach the design exactly the same way we do. […] And that’s cool. I mean, that’s really neat.”

“To be frank I’m a little emotionally exhausted because that was super stressful. But it worked — so far,” SpaceX founder Elon Musk told the press after the launch. “We have to dock to the station, and we have to come back, but so far it’s worked. […] We’ve passed some of the riskiest items.”

The short-term goal of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program is to restore NASA’s ability to send humans into orbit, which it has been unable to do since retiring the space shuttles in 2011. Longer term, according to NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine, the goal is to render space accessible to many customers and, through commercial competition, do so at a lower cost than the space shuttle missions, which ran about US$1.5 billion apiece. Currently, NASA pays for Russian spacecraft to carry living people, at roughly US$80 million per astronaut.

NASA has selected two astronauts, Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken, for Crew Dragon’s first manned mission, which NASA said might take place this summer.

The Boeing airframe company is also collaborating with NASA on human-crewable spacecraft and its Starliner craft is scheduled to undergo flight test this spring. NASA’s contract with Boeing is currently valued at US$4.2 billion. The contract with SpaceX is valued at US$2.6 billion.

Last year, SpaceX tested its Falcon Heavy rocket by launching company founder Elon Musk’s personal Tesla convertible into space.

Posted on March 18th 2019 in Uncategorized

Cisco sues Apple for iPhone trademark

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Cisco sues Apple for iPhone trademark
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Friday, January 12, 2007

The iPhone only made its appearance as a prototype and there have been controversies aroused.

The dispute has come up between the manufacturer of the iPhone (which was resented on Wednesday for the first time) – Apple Inc. – and a leader in network and communication systems, based in San JoseCisco. The company claims to possess the trademark for iPhone, and moreover, that it sells devices under the same brand through one of its divisions.

This became the reason for Cisco to file a lawsuit against Apple Inc. so that the latter would stop selling the device.

Cisco states that it has received the trademark in 2000, when the company overtook Infogear Technology Corp., which took place in 1996.

The Vice President and general counsel of the company, Mark Chandler, explained that there was no doubt about the excitement of the new device from Apple, but they should not use a trademark, which belongs to Cisco.

The iPhone developed by Cisco is a device which allows users to make phone calls over the voice over Internet protocol (VoIP).

Posted on March 18th 2019 in Uncategorized

Landfill named after comedian John Cleese

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Landfill named after comedian John Cleese
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Monday, May 21, 2007

In an unofficial move by contractor, Roy Harding, a rubbish tip has been named after comedian John Cleese, dubbed “Mt. Cleese” in Palmerston North, New Zealand.

The naming came after Mr Cleese visited Palmerston North last year and described it as a great place to go to commit suicide, claiming it was the “suicide capital of New Zealand”. He also stated that they were glad to leave after their performance at the Regent on Broadway was over. Mr Harding says it is just to get back at Mr Cleese.

Official signage is now being ordered after city councillors said they thought it was good idea. “People just smile and leave it there,” Chris Pepper, waste and water manager, said.

John Clarke (aka Fred Dagg), entertainer, suggested that the Awapuni Landfill be named after Mr Cleese after the comments arose in a podcast on his website. However, Mr Clarke’s suggestion was slightly different, choosing the name, “John Cleese Memorial Tip…All manner of crap happily recycled.”

The slightly bare tip, now being used as a waste minimisation centre, is being prepared for a large delivery of compost.

John Cleese is most famous for his parts in Monty Python and Fawlty Towers television shows as well as various movies including A Fish Called Wanda.

Posted on March 18th 2019 in Uncategorized

Wikinews interviews Joe Schriner, Independent U.S. presidential candidate

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Wikinews interviews Joe Schriner, Independent U.S. presidential candidate
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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Journalist, counselor, painter, and US 2012 Presidential candidate Joe Schriner of Cleveland, Ohio took some time to discuss his campaign with Wikinews in an interview.

Schriner previously ran for president in 2000, 2004, and 2008, but failed to gain much traction in the races. He announced his candidacy for the 2012 race immediately following the 2008 election. Schriner refers to himself as the “Average Joe” candidate, and advocates a pro-life and pro-environmentalist platform. He has been the subject of numerous newspaper articles, and has published public policy papers exploring solutions to American issues.

Wikinews reporter William Saturn? talks with Schriner and discusses his campaign.

Posted on March 18th 2019 in Uncategorized

Ralph Nader calls out Democrats for financial bailout

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Ralph Nader calls out Democrats for financial bailout
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 Correction — Aug 2, 2010 Nader referred to the 1999 repeal of the 1933 Glass-Steagal Act. The Wikinews article omitted the word “repeal” from the account of Nader’s speech. 

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Independent U.S. presidential candidate Ralph Nader had harsh words for the Democrats who engineered yesterday’s passage of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, a bailout of the U.S. financial system. At a campaign stop in Waterbury, Connecticut on Saturday, Nader said that Democrats passed up a chance to enact re-regulation of the financial system and instead gave Wall Street everything it wanted.

According to Nader, Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), Representative Barney Frank (D-MA), and other Democrats considered but rejected measures such as a tax on transactions of derivatives (a “speculation tax”) because of their financial ties to Wall Street and its lobbyists. He said that Representative Chris Murphy (D-CT), who represents Waterbury, had “become a toady” of Nancy Pelosi. He drew enthusiastic applause by calling Murphy “a dynamic fraud”, and referred to Senator Joe Lieberman as “the Hermaphrodite of American Politics”. For Murphy and Representative Chris Shays (R-CT), Nader said, supporting the bailout despite the opposition of constituents was a “profile in betrayal”. Because there were no public hearings where taxpayers and experts could weigh in on the bailout, Nader characterized it as a return to “taxation without representation“—under “King George IV” 225 years after the 13 colonies were taxed under King George III.

Asked about causes of the financial crisis, Nader pointed to the deregulation of the financial sector with the 1999 Glass-Steagall Act and further deregulation in 2000, as well as the rise of overly complex financial derivatives. He outlined a four-part reform plan:

  1. Re-regulation of financial markets
  2. Increasing shareholder control of corporations
  3. Taxpayer equity as part of any bailout, as in the 1979 bailout of Chrysler Corporation
  4. Making speculators pay by enacting a 0.1% tax on derivatives transactions (which Nader said will amount to over $500 trillion this year)

Regarding the equity warrants included in the passed bailout, Nader relayed word from an unnamed source that Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson had told Wall Street executives “don’t worry, it’s not enforceable”.

Nader told reporters that he had abandoned the Green Party because “Greens are not disciplined, and they’re not mature”, and also lack the fund-raising capabilities to break into mainstream political discussions. “They bicker and bicker,” he said, pushing out their best people. However, he endorsed several local Green Party candidates, including Chris Murphy’s opponent Harold Burbank.

The virtual media blackout for third party campaigns by national newspapers and networks has been a source of continual frustration for the Nader campaign, as well as the campaigns of Libertarian Bob Barr and Green Cynthia McKinney and the post-campaign activities of Republican Ron Paul. According to Nader, reporters tell him that editors of national media are “very bigoted against third party and independent candidacies”. Even journalists for taxpayer-supported media, such as National Public Radio‘s Terry Gross and the Public Broadcasting Service‘s Jim Lehrer, have shut him out during this campaign. Debates, he lamented, are controlled by corporate interests through the Commission on Presidential Debates.

Nader spoke to a supportive crowd of about 60 people and his campaign raised over $2000 at the event, their third visit to Waterbury. The event took place in the former building of a closed-down bank.

Posted on March 18th 2019 in Uncategorized

Wikinews Shorts: September 29, 2010

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Wikinews Shorts: September 29, 2010
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A compilation of brief news reports for Wednesday, September 29, 2010.

Posted on March 17th 2019 in Uncategorized

News briefs:June 18, 2006

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News briefs:June 18, 2006
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The time is 22:00 (UTC) on June 18th, 2006, and this is Audio Wikinews News Briefs.

Contents

  • 1 Headlines
    • 1.1 Author claims Al Qaeda planned to gas New York’s subway system
    • 1.2 Legality of NSW traffic and parking fines to be tested in court
    • 1.3 Croatia and Japan share point in Group F
    • 1.4 Brazil beat Australia with two second half goals in Group F
    • 1.5 Romania lose 62-14 to France in rugby
    • 1.6 Argentina defeat Wales 45-27 in rugby
    • 1.7 South Africa defeat Scotland in second rugby test
  • 2 Closing statements
Posted on March 16th 2019 in Uncategorized

California teamsters picket Orange County transit system in contract dispute

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California teamsters picket Orange County transit system in contract dispute
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Sunday, July 8, 2007

In an ongoing labor dispute from May of this year in California, United States, Teamsters Local 952, which represents the Orange County Transportation Authority‘s 1,200 coach operators, went on strike at 12:35 a.m. (0035 hrs) PDT Saturday morning after a cooling-off period declared by State Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger expired.

Sanctioned picket lines have been formed outside Authority facilities in Garden Grove, Anaheim, and Santa Ana. About 200,000 regular passengers are affected.

Major sticking points in the negotiation appear to be related to cost-of-living increases and pension funding allocations. The strike was declared after the Authority’s bargaining agent said he lacked authority to approve a union counter proposal, which he said had to be taken before the OCTA’s board of directors, who will not be available to meet until Monday the 9th at the earliest.

Posted on March 16th 2019 in Uncategorized