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Obama's Energy Secretary Pick Outed For "Significant Conflicts of Interest" in MIT's Fracking Study

Watch the full interview with Kevin Connor on Democracy Now! at http://owl.li/jrpKC. President Obama's pick to become the nation's next secretary of energy i...
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Watch the full interview with Kevin Connor on Democracy Now! athttp://owl.li/jrpKC. President Obama's pick to become the nation's next secretary of energy is drawing criticism for his deep ties to the fossil fuel, fracking and nuclear industries. MIT nuclear physicist Ernest Moniz has served on advisory boards for oil giant BP and General Electric, and was a trustee of the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center, a Saudi Aramco-backed nonprofit organization. In 2011, Moniz was the chief author of an influential study for MIT on the future of natural gas. According to a new report by the Public Accountability Initiative, Moniz failed to disclose that he had taken a lucrative position at a pro-drilling firm called ICF International just days before a key natural gas "fracking" study was released.

AMY GOODMAN: Kevin Connor, I wanted to turn to a 2011 press conference at the MIT Energy Initiative, where Ernest Moniz introduced the study now under contention, "The Future of Natural Gas." In his opening remarks, Professor Moniz emphasized the report's independent of its sponsors and advisers.

ERNEST MONIZ: I do want to emphasize a disclaimer, if you like, that while their advice was absolutely critical, they are not responsible for the recommendations and the findings. We have not asked for endorsement. We asked for their advice; we received it. But the results, then, are our responsibility.

AMY GOODMAN: Later in the presentation, co-chair Anthony Meggs introduces the MIT report's findings, saying environmental impacts associated with fracking are, "challenging but manageable." However, Meggs failed to disclose he had joined the gas company Talisman Energy prior to the release of the study.

ANTHONY MEGGS: ... messages are very simple. First of all, there's a lot of gas in the world, at very modest cost. As you will see, gas is still, globally speaking, a very young industry with a bright future ahead of it. Secondly, and perhaps obviously at this stage, although not so obvious when we started three years ago, shale gas is transformative for the economy of the United States, North America, for the gas industry, in particular, and potentially on a global scale. Thirdly, the environmental impacts of shale development, widely discussed and hotly debated, are—and we use these words carefully—challenging but manageable.

AMY GOODMAN: Kevin Connor, your response?

KEVIN CONNOR: It's absolutely outrageous for the Energy Initiative, for Moniz and MIT to pretend this is independent of industry, well, first of all, given the fact that the sponsors of the report are all, you know, industry organizations and companies like Chesapeake Energy. Moniz was attempting to say that it was somehow insulated from the influence of these gas companies, when in fact authors of the study, such as Moniz and Meggs, were—had industry positions at the time.

Meggs's quote there is particularly insidious, the fact that he is saying that fracking is safe for the environment, when he had actually joined Talisman Energy, a gas company, one of the most active frackers in the Marcellus Shale, a month before the study was released. So he is speaking to a roomful of journalists there, presenting a report designed to influence policy, and not disclosing that he is on the industry payroll. That is perhaps the last person in that room who should be presenting that finding or having anything to do with authoring that kind of report. And yet MIT and Moniz thought it was appropriate to put that spokesperson forward. So, it just goes to the fact that MIT was really sort of presenting an industry brochure here with a lot of pro-gas, industry advocacy talking points, and not revealing that there were significant conflicts of interest here.

JUSTIN ELLIOTT: Yeah, I mean, one thing to note is, Ernest Moniz is getting a confirmation hearing next month, and as part of that, he has to release a personal financial disclosure, and also, at some point later, he'll have to—an ethics agreement will become public. So we should actually learn more about his current and recent involvement in these companies and possibly also stock holdings and that sort of thing, so it should be interesting. I think this story isn't over yet.

Democracy Now!, is an independent global news hour that airs weekdays on 1,100+ TV and radio stations Monday through Friday.

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Open Letter to #Nestlé by @yasminemotarjemi #FoodSafety #Suisse #Justice #Swiss

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join this FB page please :in order to support the fight for dignity and justice of Yasmine against Nestlé : https://www.facebook.com/justiceforyasmine

Open Letter by 
Yasmine Motarjemi , Former Corporate Food Safety Manager (2000-2010), Assistant Vice President
to
Mr Peter Brabeck-Letmathe
Chairman of the Board of Directors
Nestlé, S.A
55 Avenue Nestlé
CH-1800 Vevey

"Nyon, 4th Septembre 2010
Dear Mr Chairman,
I was your Corporate Food Safety Manager from 2000 to 2010. I write to you today for two reasons: 
first, to share with you my concerns regarding a culture and management practices in Nestlé, which 
undermine food safety; and, second, to inform you of my personal experiences while attempting to
improve the situation.
I long nourished the hope that you would be interested in meeting the person responsible for dealing 
with everyday problems of the Company in an area as important as the safety of Nestlé products. 
However, to my regret we have never had the opportunity to meet and discuss the food safety 
situation in the Company. As both corporate-level management of food safety and my professional 
status deteriorated to the point of being unacceptable, I was compelled to report my concerns to 
Management with the expectation that a fair evaluation of the situation would be undertaken. In 
the event, my efforts were in vain. 
Mr Chairman, I always found listening to your speeches a source of motivation and inspiration. 
Moreover, Nestlé Policies and Management Principles portray a model Company, with the most 
laudable corporate values. A glance at the Company building, offices and facilities is enough to make 
any outsider believe that this is an ideal working environment. 
However, after only a short time, I was profoundly disappointed at how people are managed, the 
discrepancies between your public statements and the private deeds of managers; between the 
Company’s policies and management principles and actual practices; and between the proclaimed 
values and the prevailing fear culture (including mobbing and intimidation) that managers nourished. 
I was particularly saddened by the growing realisation that Management was not only aware of this 
situation but that it was also fully accepted by the very people who should have been, in fact, the inhouse guardians of policy compliance.I failed to see the flawless execution of policy that you promoted in your speeches. Didn’t you state 
that the management of food quality and safety depends on the quality of management? What can 
be said about food safety management when the members of Management themselves do not 
respect Company policies and principles? 
If I dared challenge the Company’s food safety and human resource practices I can assure you that it 
was not out of disrespect. On the contrary, it was because of my loyalty to the Company, my 
colleagues and the consumers we served. It was also because for me the safety of our products and 
respect for our colleagues were non-negotiable values. Involving staff in building a better company 
unavoidably includes exposing shortcomings. But surely it is better to receive timely feedback from 
within than to be publicly embarrassed later by failures.
You have often expressed your commitment to food safety. Please allow me to share with you my 
own vision in this regard. Over and above the technical and scientific aspects, the foundation of 
good food safety management is an equitable system of people management that is based on 
professionalism, fairness, objectivity, open-mindedness, respect for staff and, most importantly, for 
their dignity. I regret to say that I failed to see this approach implemented at the Nestlé Head Office. 
My own situation is a case in point. 
On several occasions I reported – first to members of Management and then, in November 2009, to 
Mr Paul Bulcke – serious shortcomings in food safety management, the professional difficulties I 
faced, and the shameful treatment that I experienced in Nestlé. I hoped that I would be given the 
opportunity to provide a full and accurate account of events during the period 2005-2010. In 
response, my contract was terminated with no opportunity to provide details of my experience. 
Nevertheless, I am prepared to meet with you, at your convenience, to share my observations on 
practices in Nestlé and their eventual repercussions on Nestlé’s reputation and consumers. I would 
also hope to use this opportunity to identify an equitable solution for my personal difficult situation, another consequence of the past events in Nestlé" 
source : http://www.rts.ch/info/3989665.html/BINARY/Mr+CEO.pdf
more here (in french) http://www.rts.ch/info/economie/3988696-une-ex-responsable-de-la-securite-alimentaire-depose-plainte-contre-nestle.html
more again (in french) 
more (in german ) : http://www.handelszeitung.ch/unternehmen/nestle-im-keim-erstickt

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In Break with Tradition, New British Surveillance Chief is an Intel Outsider

In Break with Tradition, New British Surveillance Chief is an Intel Outsider | News in english | Scoop.it
The United Kingdom's global surveillance agency is getting a new leader. But in a move widely seen as an attempt to bring the organization to heel following months of embarrassing leaks about its operations, the new director is a political operative who is more James Carville than James Bond.
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Can nutrition experts be independent if they get $25,000 per annum from #Nestle? - The Times of India

Can nutrition experts be independent if they get $25,000 per annum from #Nestle? - The Times of India | News in english | Scoop.it
Nestle admits that it does offer to pay members of its Creating Shared Value (CSV) Council $25,000 per annum. This has raised question about the effectiveness of the conflict of interest policy of the medical journal Lancet, given that two of the lead authors of its series on Maternal and Child Nutrition were members of Nestle’s Creating Shared Value Advisory.
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Children of War: 50%+ Afghan kids starving - YouTube

Afghanistan's former foreign minister currently leads the race to become the next president. The vote count should be completed by Thursday, but early result...
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The brave women fighting bigotry in Libya

The brave women fighting bigotry in Libya | News in english | Scoop.it
Once in a while, amid the destruction, kidnappings, murder and mayhem that is engulfing Libya, a brave voice emerges to give us hope that maybe there could be light at the end of the long, dark tun...
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Yemen becomes front line in US drone war

Yemen becomes front line in US drone war | News in english | Scoop.it
While recent months have seen less US drone attacks in South Asia, deadly strikes are raining down on a daily basis in Yemen
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The New 1% isn't just the Rich, it is the Spoiled Oligarch Heirs (Krugman)

The New 1% isn't just the Rich, it is the Spoiled Oligarch Heirs (Krugman) | News in english | Scoop.it
Bill Moyers interviews Paul Krugman Blurb:
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CIA torture architect breaks silence to defend 'enhanced interrogation'

CIA torture architect breaks silence to defend 'enhanced interrogation' | News in english | Scoop.it
CIA torture architect breaks silence to defend 'enhanced interrogation':
The psychologist regarded as the architect of the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" program has broken a seven-year silence to defend the use of torture techniques against al-Qaida terror suspects in the wake of the 9/11 attacks.
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Ukraine Jew registration hoax traced

Ukraine Jew registration hoax traced | News in english | Scoop.it
Ukraine Jew registration hoax traced:
Email intercepts that included the original copies of anti-Semitic leaflets distributed in Eastern Ukraine have now been shown to be part of an elaborate false flag hoax to sabotage recent US-Russian talks.
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U.S. ground troops going to Poland, defense minister says

U.S. ground troops going to Poland, defense minister says | News in english | Scoop.it
U.S. ground troops going to Poland, defense minister says:
Poland and the United States will announce next week the deployment of U.S. ground forces to Poland as part of an expansion of NATO presence in Central and Eastern Europe in response to events in Ukraine. That was the word from Poland's defense minister, Tomasz Siemoniak,
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Wall Street Deregulation Pushed by Clinton Advisers, Documents Reveal

Wall Street Deregulation Pushed by Clinton Advisers, Documents Reveal | News in english | Scoop.it
Wall Street Deregulation Pushed by Clinton Advisers, Documents Reveal

 

By Dan Roberts

 

Previously restricted papers reveal attempts to rush president to support act, later blamed for deepening banking crisis.
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The Strangelove Effect » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

The Strangelove Effect » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names | News in english | Scoop.it
John Pilger on how we are hoodwinked into accepting a new World War.
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The Ukraine Imbroglio and the Decline of the American Empire » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

The Ukraine Imbroglio and the Decline of the American Empire » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names | News in english | Scoop.it
The Ukraine Imbroglio and the Decline of the American Empire
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The Decline of the American EmpireArno J. Mayer in a CounterPunch Special Report reflects on the wages of "immoderate greatness".
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Saudi spy chief removal may not change U.S. ties -- or end his career

Saudi spy chief removal may not change U.S. ties -- or end his career | News in english | Scoop.it
Prince Bandar bin Sultan's replacement last week as Saudi Arabia's intelligence chief has fueled speculation about a shift in the monarchy’s shaky relations with the United States and its position toward the Syrian conflict — not to mention about the prince's political future.
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Why Putin Isn't Worried About Sanctions

Why Putin Isn't Worried About Sanctions | News in english | Scoop.it
Global energy actors seem to be tripping over themselves to make Putin feel secure. By Steven LeVine
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The SEC's just been caught colluding with the banks it's supposed to regulate

The SEC's just been caught colluding with the banks it's supposed to regulate | News in english | Scoop.it
The Securities and Exchange Commission let Goldman Sachs and other banks off the hook for illegal marketing of complicated debt products. But the real scandal is a secret deal to pretend the fines were much tougher than they really were.
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Tomgram: Engelhardt, Knowledge Is Crime | TomDispatch

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Knowledge Is Crime | TomDispatch | News in english | Scoop.it

Too Big to Jail?
Why Kidnapping, Torture, Assassination, and Perjury Are No Longer Crimes in Washington 
By Tom Engelhardt

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Im Tirtzu founder joins Liberman’s party | +972 Magazine

Im Tirtzu founder joins Liberman’s party | +972 Magazine | News in english | Scoop.it
Head of the movement that once threatened to sue Wikipedia for describing it as ‘right-wing,’ takes a senior position in one of Israel’s most right-wing parties. Ronen Shoval, co-founder of the Im Tirtzu movement, has…
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Out of control: Fukushima manager admits to ‘embarrassing failure’

Out of control: Fukushima manager admits to ‘embarrassing failure’ | News in english | Scoop.it
RT | The manager of the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant has admitted not having full control of the facility.
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73% of today's #UK students will still be paying off their tuition fees in their 50s

73% of today's #UK  students will still be paying off their tuition fees in their 50s | News in english | Scoop.it
Three out of four of today’s students will reach their 50s still owing debts from university of around £30,000, according to a major study published today.
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Documentary reveals US Air Force unit recruits gamers to kill with drones in Pakistan

Documentary reveals US Air Force unit recruits gamers to kill with drones in Pakistan | News in english | Scoop.it
A new documentary by Norwegian filmmaker Tonje Hessen Schei called "Drone which premiered in Europe on April 15", reveals that regular US Air Force Unit from Nevada took part in CIA assassination pro
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Putin makes overture to incoming NATO chief - Xinhua | English.news.cn

Putin makes overture to incoming NATO chief - Xinhua | English.news.cn | News in english | Scoop.it
Putin makes overture to incoming NATO chief:
President Vladimir Putin on Saturday lauded incoming NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, in sharp contrast to his recent comments on the bloc's outgoing chief. "We (Putin and Stoltenberg) have very warm relations, including personal relations," he said in a local television interview, adding Stoltenberg "is a very serious and responsible man."
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Philip Giraldi: Monied Interests Almost Always Win ( bout Sheldon Adelson )

Monied Interests Almost Always Win

 

By Philip Giraldi

 

Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson epitomizes the corruption that money brings.
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Whatever Happened to Minding Our Own Business? » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

Whatever Happened to Minding Our Own Business? » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names | News in english | Scoop.it
 
Renee Parsons investigates the State Department's overseas contingency operation.
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White-Washing White Terrorism » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names

White-Washing White Terrorism » CounterPunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names | News in english | Scoop.it
 
Ajamu Baraka on white supremacy and the Jewish Community Center Shootings.
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Edward Snowden : Vladimir Putin Must Be Called To Account On Surveillance Just Like Obama

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