Scientists are accusing the BP oil company of using the U.S. courts to attack their calculations of how much oil leaked into the Gulf of Mexico during the Deepwater Horizon drilling disaster.
In a paper published Thursday in the journal Science, researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, in Massachusetts, charge that BP and other corporations damage scientific research when they subpoena documents and correspondence that lead to study conclusions. Richard Camilli, an ocean physicist, engineer and lead author of the paper, claimed that BP was intent on using such correspondence to raise doubts about the spill calculations.
Camilli and his colleagues called for legislation that would shield researchers from litigants who were “seeking to silence scientific inquiry or retribution for publishing independent research findings.”
A federal court in New Orleans is considering a proposed $7.8-billion settlement between BP and Gulf Coast victims of the 2010 oil spill. In preparation for a separate suit brought by the U.S. government, BP sought and obtained thousands of the scientists’ e-mails, as well as other documents, despite the insistence of scientists that the materials were confidential.
At Community Service Help, www.communityservicehelp.com, the brainchild of Adam Young, criminals sentenced to community service get credit for taking classes like algebra and English instead of picking up trash.
The site offers more than 2,500 courses and works with federally recognized charities that have agreed to sponsor offenders’ community service, Young says.
Statistics show a high correlation between crime and lack of education: The less education a person has, the more likely he or she will end up in jail or prison. Once in prison, the more education an inmate receives, the greater the chance he or she will remain free once released.
“The correlation is so dramatic, I can’t understand why we as a nation don’t look for opportunities to provide education to people who’ve already had a brush with the law,” Young says.
This is such a good idea! And it’s a good example of what many are talking about that instead of locking people away, we should be helping criminals by improving their lives and underlying conditions, those elements which are often the cause for the crime. It’s the same idea with treating drug abusers for an illness instead of a crime, as they’re doing in some other countries with much success. And after all, what do you think is more likely to help a delinquent: forcing him to pick up trash, with the underlying message that that’s his role in life, or helping to educate him, with the underlying message that he can improve, grow, and become a productive member of society? All in all, very happy to see this and I hope this program is successful. Could prove to be a real turning point in our justice system. - Ari
“Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales wants to blank out all pages of the online encyclopedia to oppose the pending SOPA anti-piracy bill in the US. Wales, who has asked the Wikipedia community for input on the idea, fears the bill could seriously hurt the Internet and thinks that blanking out Wikipedia will send a strong message to lawmakers.
Later this week, the Senate’s House Judiciary Committee will vote on the “Stop Online Piracy Act” (SOPA).
Supporters of the bill say it’s needed to safeguard the interests of rightsholders who claim their businesses are threatened by online piracy. Those opposing are worried that the unprecedented censorship tools it introduces will take out many websites on baseless or faulty claims of copyright infringement.
Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales belongs to the latter group, and behind the scenes he is mulling plans to blank out all Wikipedia pages in protest against the pending SOPA bill. On Saturday he posted a message on his user page asking the community for input on the idea.
Wales explains that the idea of a ‘self-censorship’ protest is inspired by a campaign the Italian Wikipedia community ran earlier this year.”~TorrentFreak
Funeral directors bring the casket of Troy Davis into the Jonesville Baptist Church before his funeral in Savannah, Ga., Saturday, Oct. 1, 2011. Davis died by lethal injection for the 1989 slaying of off-duty Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail. (AP Photo/Stephen Morton)
This week, the Alabama town of Bay Minette will implement a bizarre and unconstitutional way of keeping minor offenders in check — go to church or go to jail:
Operation Restore Our Community or “ROC”…begins next week. The city judge will either let misdemenor [sic] offenders work off their sentences in jail and pay a fine or go to church every Sunday for a year.
If offenders elect church, they’re allowed to pick the place of worship, but must check in weekly with the pastor and the police department. If the one-year church attendance program is completed successfully, the offender’s case will be dismissed.
TRIPOLI, Libya — As rebel leaders pleaded with their fighters to avoid taking revenge against “brother Libyans,” many rebels were turning their wrath against migrants from sub-Saharan Africa, imprisoning hundreds for the crime of fighting as “mercenaries” for Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi without any evidence except the color of their skin.
“A revolution that inspires racism is not a revolution at all it is merely an evolution of oppression!” - Lupe Fiasco.