Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


Purveyor's Journal
Purveyor's Journal
January 28, 2013

Russian FM Calls For Iran And The West To Stop Behaving ‘Like Children’ On Nuclear Talks

Source: Associated Press

OSCOW — Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Monday that Iran and the West should stop behaving “like little children” and agree on where to hold talks on Tehran’s nuclear program that were supposed to take place this month.

“We think the essence of our talks is far more important than the atmosphere of any given town,” Lavrov said at a news conference. “We hope that common sense will prevail and we will stop being capricious like little children.”

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi on Monday blamed the West for the holdup over the venue, striking back at the European Union, which last week accused Tehran of willfully delaying new nuclear talks with the six world powers by changing venues and using other stalling tactics.

Monday’s statements by Salehi and Lavrov suggest no headway has been made on Iran’s proposal of Egypt as the site to renew dialogue, more than six months since the last round ended in stalemate.

Read more: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/iranian-foreign-minister-says-disputes-with-west-over-venue-snag-bid-to-restart-nuclear-talks/2013/01/28/b5463602-692e-11e2-9a0b-db931670f35d_story.html

January 28, 2013

FACT CHECK: The Stretched Case Against Chuck Hagel

WASHINGTON — Republican-leaning groups opposing President Barack Obama's choice of Chuck Hagel to head the Defense Department have let loose a barrage of claims about the former GOP senator.

They say he endorses automatic cuts to the defense budget, that he wants to decimate the nation's nuclear arsenal, that his membership on the board of a major company that had a Pentagon contract is a conflict of interest that he's ignoring.

A look at Hagel's record suggests many of the contentions are overblown.

In statements and attack ads, the groups have sought to undermine Hagel's nomination in the weeks leading up to his confirmation hearing on Thursday before the Senate Armed Services Committee. His opponents face a tough challenge as Democrats have begun to rally around the president's choice, and the party has the majority votes to confirm the former two-term Nebraska senator, barring surprises.



January 28, 2013

Ford, Nissan, Daimler Agree To ‘Unique’ 3-Way Agreement To Launch First Affordable Fuel Cell Auto...

Source: Auto World News

Ford Motor Company, Nissan Motor Co., and Daimler AG have agreed to a three-way agreement to "accelerate the commercialization" of fuel cell electric vehicles. The companies released a joint press release to announce the news.

The companies are hoping to jointly develop common a fuel cell electric vehicle system while still reducing investment costs associated with the engineering of the technology Ford stated. The three companies will invest equally towards the project.

"Fuel cell electric vehicles are the obvious next step to complement today's battery electric vehicles as our industry embraces more sustainable transportation," said Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Member of the Board of Directors and Executive Vice President of Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., supervising Research and Development in the press release. "We look forward to a future where we can answer many customer needs by adding FCEVs on top of battery EVs within the zero-emission lineup."

Their FCEVs have each logged over 10 million km in test driver around the globe and in all kinds of diverse conditions. The companies plan to develop a common fuel cell stack and fuel cell system that can then be used by each respective company to launch separately branded FCEVs, which also don't produce CO2 while the vehicle is in drive.

Read more: http://www.autoworldnews.com/articles/3053/20130128/ford-nissan-daimler-ag-agree-unique-three-way-agreement-launch-first-affordable-fuel-cell-electric-vehicle-2017.htm

January 28, 2013

Israel Approves Plan To Transfer Some Bedouin Arabs; Rights Group Calls Plan 'Racist'

Published January 28, 2013 Associated Press

JERUSALEM – An Israeli government statement says the Cabinet has approved a plan to recognize some unauthorized Bedouin Arab encampments and move others to urban areas.
A leading rights group criticized the program.

About 30,000 Bedouins live in shantytowns in Israel's Negev desert. Bedouin say they've owned the land for decades, but Israel contests that. It's concerned about unauthorized Bedouin building in that area.

The Association for Civil Rights in Israel called the plan "racist." It charged Monday that Israel would displace Bedouin citizens while promoting new communities for Jews.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/01/28/israel-approves-plan-to-transfer-some-bedouin-arabs-rights-group-calls-plan/#ixzz2JJBMAvJb

January 28, 2013

JC Penney Brings Back The Big Discounts It Ditched Last Year In A Bid To Woo Back Shoppers

J.C. Penney is bringing back sales.

The struggling department store chain this week will begin adding back some of the hundreds of sales it ditched last year in hopes of luring shoppers who were turned off when the discounts disappeared, CEO Ron Johnson told The Associated Press.

Penney also plans to add price tags or signs for more than half of its merchandise to show customers how much they're saving by shopping at the chain — a strategy used by a few other retailers. For store branded items such as Arizona, Penney will show comparison prices from competitors.

The moves are a reversal for Penney on the eve of the one-year anniversary when it vowed to almost completely get rid of the sales that Americans covet but that cut into a store's profits. The idea was to offer everyday low prices that customers could count on rather than the nearly 600 fleeting discounts, coupons and sales it once offered.

The bold plan has been closely watched by others in the retail industry, which commonly offers deep discounts to draw shoppers. But so far the experiment has served as a cautionary tale of how difficult it is to change shoppers' habits: Penney next month is expected to report its fourth consecutive quarter of big sales drops and profit losses. After losing more than half of its value, Penney stock is trading at about $19. And the company's credit ratings are in junk status.



January 28, 2013

35,000 More NYC-Area Buildings In Flood Zones

NEW YORK (AP) -- Twice as many homes and businesses in and near the city would be in flood zones under new maps that may force more property-owners to buy flood insurance, complicate post-Superstorm Sandy rebuilding for some and confront others with the choice of building higher or paying considerably more for insurance.

The revised maps released by the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Monday are preliminary, but they will likely become a basis for changes to building laws and insurance requirements in coming years.

They represent one of the first concrete signals of how officials will carry out vows to rebuild smarter after Sandy and what that will mean for property owners. While a roughly two-year review is expected before new maps become official, New York City is planning short-term steps to encourage owners of Sandy-damaged properties to rebuild in the meantime.

And those who already have flood insurance could pay substantially more for it if their properties sit below the new flood levels. Under changes to the federal flood insurance program last year, owners of a $250,000 home with a ground floor three feet below the flood level would pay $9,500 a year, compared with $1,410 for a house at the flood line, according to FEMA, which administers the flood program. The increases are to be phased in over five years for existing buildings, after new maps are formally adopted.



January 28, 2013

Tight Inventory Slows US Pending Home Sales

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A measure of Americans who signed contracts to buy homes fell last month after reaching a 2 ½-year high in November. Sales were held back by a limited supply of available homes.

The National Association of Realtors said Monday that its seasonally adjusted index for pending home sales dropped 4.3 percent in December from November to 101.7. That's still 6.9 percent higher than a year ago.

The decline signals that sales of previously occupied homes may cool off in the coming months. There's generally a one- to two-month lag between a signed contract and a completed sale.

Still, the broader trend in home sales remains solid. Completed sales of previously occupied homes rose last year to their highest level in five years, one of many signs of recovery in the housing market last year. And the Realtors' group forecasts that sales will rise 9 percent this year, as the recovery strengthens. Other economists have similar forecasts.



January 28, 2013

Sept. 11 Defense Seeks Torture Evidence at Cuba Hearing

By David Glovin - Jan 28, 2013
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four others accused in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks returned to a military courtroom as their lawyers seek permission to collect evidence that some were tortured.

Among the legal issues to be raised before a military judge at the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is whether the defense will gain access to documents indicating that defendants were tortured while in U.S. custody. In October, during the first round of pretrial hearings, Mohammed used the proceedings to accuse the U.S. government of killing millions of people and employing torture “under the name of national security.”

James Connell, an attorney for Ali Abdul Aziz Ali, a defendant who is a nephew of Mohammed accused of helping finance the hijackers, said at a press conference in Cuba yesterday the men may be able to exclude some government evidence at trial if they can show it was derived from torture. The men, who face a possible death sentence if found guilty, may also use evidence of torture to seek reduced sentences.

This week’s proceedings are “the first step toward finding what happened in the torture of these men,” Connell said.

Mohammed was silent this morning as his lead attorney, David Nevin, requested permission for another lawyer, Gary Sowards, to join his defense team. That led the judge to ask whether he could appoint an additional lawyer without Mohammed’s express consent.



January 28, 2013

Gasoline Advances as Hess Says Shutting Port Reading Refinery

By Barbara Powell - Jan 28, 2013
Gasoline rose to the highest level since October after Hess Corp. (HES) said it will shut the Port Reading, New Jersey, refinery at the end of February.

Futures rose the most since Dec. 26 as Hess said it plans to sell its terminal network and leave the refinery business. The network includes 28 million barrels of storage at 19 terminals on the East Coast. The 70,000-barrel-a-day refinery’s fluid catalytic cracker makes gasoline and components for blending heating oil.

“Hess consists mainly of a cat cracker that produces approximately 50,000 barrels a day of gasoline that supplies the Northeast,” said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates LLC in Houston. “Its shutdown will particularly impact summer supplies.”

Gasoline for February delivery rose 6.17 cents, or 2.1 percent, to $2.971 a gallon at 11:30 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Earlier, it reached $2.9411, the highest intraday level since Oct. 12. Volume was more than double the 100-day average for the time of day.



January 28, 2013

Egypt Protests Flare for Fifth Day as Opposition Rejects Talks

By With assistance from Ola Galal - Jan 28, 2013
Clashes flared for a fifth day in Egypt, killing one person, while a main opposition bloc rejected calls for dialogue with President Mohamed Mursi hours after he instituted a state of emergency in three restive provinces.

More demonstrations are expected today to mark the anniversary of the bloodiest day in the 2011 uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak in 2011. About 50 people have died in clashes since Jan. 25, in what Mursi described as unacceptable attacks on civilians and state installations. Transgressors, he warned in a late-night address, would be dealt with firmly.

A second mass funeral in two days in Port Said and clashes between police firing tear gas at rock-throwing protesters in central Cairo clouded Mursi’s call for a national dialogue with the opposition. His critics say he has reneged on pledges, is intent solely on cementing Islamist rule in the nation and has failed to revive the economy. The Egyptian pound , with the currency having shed 7 percent in a month.

Nobel Laureate Mohamed ElBaradei, one of the opposition’s leaders, said Mursi’s offer for talks wasn’t objective and refused to take part in them unless conditions are met. He was joined by former presidential candidates Amre Moussa and Hamdeen Sabahi in rejecting talks.



Profile Information

Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 29,876

Journal Entries

Latest Discussions»Purveyor's Journal