18 April 2009

Hollywood scores win over Pirate Bay

The entertainment industry has won round one in a legal battle against file-sharing hub The Pirate Bay, with guilty verdicts and one-year prison sentences handed down to four men accused of running and financing the popular site.

The defendants vowed to appeal, setting the stage for a lengthy copyright dispute between music and movie corporations and an online swap shop they say has deprived them of billions of dollars in lost revenue.

In Friday's landmark ruling, the Stockholm district court convicted Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Peter Sunde, Fredrik Neij and Carl Lundstrom of helping millions of users illegally download music, movies and computer games.

All four received one-year terms and were ordered to pay damages of 30 million kronor ($A5.0 million) to entertainment companies, including Warner Bros, Sony Music Entertainment, EMI and Columbia Pictures.

"We can't pay and we won't pay," Sunde said in a defiant video clip posted on the Internet. Mockingly, he held up a hand-scribbled "I owe U" note to the camera. "This is as close as you will get to having money from us," Sunde said.

With an estimated 22 million users, The Pirate Bay has become the entertainment industry's enemy No. 1 after successful court actions against file-swapping sites such as Grokster and Kazaa.

Lundstrom helped finance the site while the three other defendants administered it.

Defense lawyers had argued the quartet should be acquitted because The Pirate Bay doesn't host any copyright-protected material (By the SAME TOKEN, Google should also be sued and ordered to pay for pointing to copyright material) . Instead, it provides a forum for its users to download content through so-called torrent files. The technology allows users to transfer parts of a large file from several different users, increasing download speeds.

The court found the defendants guilty of helping users commit copyright violations by providing a Web site with "sophisticated search functions, simple download and storage capabilities, and through the tracker linked to the Web site."

The case focused on dozens of works that the prosecutor said were downloaded illegally. They included songs by the Beatles, Robbie Williams and Coldplay, movies such as Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and computer games including World of Warcraft - Invasion.

Judge Tomas Norstrom told reporters that the site was "commercially driven," which the defendants have denied.

John Kennedy, the head of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, called the verdict good news for anyone "who is making a living or a business from creative activity and who needs to know their rights will be protected by law."

The Pirate Bay had assured users the trial wouldn't affect the site, and it remained operational after the verdict. Authorities temporarily shut it down in May 2006 after seizing servers and computer equipment during raids in several locations in Sweden. But it soon reappeared, running on servers elsewhere.

Andre Rickardsson, a computer expert and former investigator for the Swedish security police, said the ruling could encourage the entertainment industry to threaten Internet operators with lawsuits unless they block access to the site.

File-sharing wouldn't go away, he added, but users would likely turn to more advanced technological tools to hide their activities.

"It's not as if people will turn around and say 'oops, I'll have to stop file-sharing now.' Instead the reaction will be 'oops, what can I do to protect myself from getting caught'."

Sunde's lawyer Peter Althin said he was confident that higher courts would dismiss the case against The Pirate Bay, which he described as a battle between the corporate world and "a generation of young people who want to take part of new technology."

The verdict comes as Europe debates stricter rules to crack down on those who share content illegally on the Internet.

Last week French legislators rejected a plan to cut off the Internet connections of people who illegally download music and films, but the government plans to resurrect the bill for another vote this month.

Opponents said the legislation would represent a Big Brother intrusion on civil liberties, while the European Parliament last month adopted a nonbinding resolution that defines Internet access as an untouchable "fundamental freedom."

Earlier this month, Sweden introduced a new law that makes it easier to prosecute file-sharers because it requires Internet Service Providers to disclose the Internet Protocol-addresses of suspected violators to copyright owners.

The country of 9 million has one of Europe's highest rates of Internet penetration, but has also gained a reputation as a hub for file-sharers.

Statistics from the Netnod Internet Exchange, an organisation measuring Internet traffic in Sweden, suggested that daily online activity dropped more than 40 per cent after the law took effect on April 1.

18 Apr 2009

There could have been NO other decision made.

The "Hollywood Money Making Machine" is owned by FOUR families, and is one of the World's Largest economies.

The "Hollywood Lobby" is SO strong, you CANNOT and WILL NOT win,

as previously mentioned in this blog.

Therefore iiNet's battle will also be futile. See article :

Film studios battle iiNet in court

London cop questioned over G20 death

A London policeman has been questioned on suspicion of manslaughter over a man's death at G20 summit protests this month, after it was found he died of a haemorrhage and not a heart attack.

Ian Tomlinson, 47, was filmed being hit by a police officer with a baton on April 1 minutes before collapsing in London's financial district, the focus of demonstrations against the meeting of world leaders on the economic crisis.

He had not been taking part in the protests, which lasted two days and were marred with spells of violence.

Tomlinson's death raised concerns about the tactics deployed by police to contain the protesters and was followed by scores of complaints alleging police brutality at the demonstrations.

On Friday it was revealed that the results of an initial post-mortem examination which found Tomlinson had suffered a heart attack had been overturned by a second examination conducted by coroner Nat Cary.

"Doctor Cary's opinion is that the cause of death was abdominal haemorrhage. The cause of the haemorrhage remains to be ascertained," said the statement from the coroners' court but released by his family's lawyers.

Moments later the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), the police watchdog, said that an officer suspended after the death of Tomlinson had been questioned under caution.

"Following the initial results of the second post-mortem, a Metropolitan Police officer has been interviewed under caution for the offence of manslaughter as part of an ongoing inquiry into the death of Ian Tomlinson," it said, adding it could not provide further details at this stage.

Tomlinson's step-son Paul King said his family members were feeling stress mixed with anger.

"First we were told that there had been no contact with the police, then we were told that he died of a heart attack," he said.

"Now we know that he was violently assaulted by a police officer and died from internal bleeding. As time goes on we hope that the full truth about how Ian died will be made known.

"We just want the truth and hope that the IPCC do a thorough investigation."

London's Metropolitan Police expressed its "sincere regret" over Tomlinson's death soon afterwards but said it could not comment specifically on the post-mortem findings due to the ongoing probe.

"The Metropolitan Police Service wishes to reiterate its sincere regret in relation to the death of Ian Tomlinson. Our thoughts are with his family, and all those affected by this tragedy," it said.

Meanwhile, London Mayor Boris Johnson urged a "fast and transparent" conclusion to the investigation and said the police deserved "overwhelming support."

Metropolitan Police chief Paul Stephenson called in government inspectors to examine the force's tactics in dealing with mass protests following Tomlinson's death.

Stephenson has also said that footage of clashes will be reviewed to see if any other incidents need to be looked at.

Nearly 150 complaints have been made to the IPCC about officers' behaviour during two days of protests over the G20 London summit on April 2. Around 70 involve claims of excessive force.

The IPCC is also looking into the case of an animal rights activist, Nicola Fisher, who was filmed being slapped across the face and hit with a baton during an altercation with an officer.

17 April 2009

Clinton calls for Cyprus solution soon

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called on rival leaders in Cyprus to seize momentum and reach a solution soon to reunify the divided island, her spokesman says.

Clinton met on Wednesday with Mehmet Ali Talat, leader of breakaway Turkish Cyprus. She met earlier this month in Prague with Markos Kyprianou, foreign minister of the internationally recognised Republic of Cyprus, who will come next week to Washington for further talks.

"She expressed her support for the efforts of both sides to build on the momentum and achieve a solution as soon as possible, which will require courage on all sides," State Department spokesman Robert Wood said on Thursday.

Clinton voiced "her confidence they can meet this challenge," he said.

Talat, who succeeded hardliner Rauf Denktash in 2005, headed to Washington for the talks just days before Turkish Cyprus holds elections. His left-wing Turkish Republican Party has been down in opinion polls.

The State Department said Clinton had a "positive, constructive meeting" with Talat.

"She reaffirmed the support of the United States for a just and lasting settlement that reunifies Cyprus into a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation," Wood said.

Clinton also welcomed the work of the special envoy on Cyprus, former Australian foreign minister Alexander Downer.

Cyprus has been divided along ethnic lines since 1974 when Turkey invaded the island's northern third in response to an Athens-engineered Greek Cypriot coup to unite the island with Greece.

The State Department said Clinton's meeting with Talat did not imply any recognition of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, with which only Ankara maintains diplomatic relations.

ninemsn 17 Apr 2009

So the solution is simple, REMOVE the terrorising occupants.

Just like in the Occupation of Palestine.

Not in anyone's interest ?

Who Profits

16 April 2009

Coca Cola - Deliberate Lies

In late 2008, Coca Cola advertised in the news print in Australia that its product

  • does NOT cause tooth decay, and
  • does NOT make you fat.
  • does NOT contain caffine

After in inquiry by the ACCC, Coca Cola had to retract from its misleading statements
as its products

  • DO cause tooth decay,
  • can contribute to being overweight.
  • DO contain caffine

In the early renditions of the popular drink the formula contained cocaine.

Also "Coke" was known for its properties in cleaning an Australian copper 2c coin to mint condition, the acid that also strips teeth of their enamel.

King Solomons (acid) reign

King Solomon Trujillo I of Telstra, was imported from the colony of the United States of America, with strong links to President Bush, in order to rape the Australian Telco. cash cow by cutting jobs and services to the detriment of the Australian public, shareholders and consumers alike.

What is more concerning that he was allowed to under perform in ALL aspects of the business and receive a large bonus as a reward.

Since King Solomons reign :

  • Telstra shares have fallen
  • 12,000 jobs were axed
  • 5,000 public telephone booths removed
  • information on billing system removed
  • Complaints risen 240%

From an archived Wikipedia article which no longer exists under Solomon's directive:

  • He resigned as CEO of U S West Communications, Inc. just before the company became the subject of a federal criminal probe for overstating nearly a billion dollars in profits. [7] He was not charged by the justice department and has denied any knowledge of accounting irregularities.

See also comments on ZGEEK forum thread:
Dept. of Fail: Sol Trujillo's Telstra legacy

Telstra complaints are up by 240 per cent under CEO Sol Trujillo

CUSTOMER complaints about Telstra's phone service rocketed by a massive 52 per cent in just 90 days, company statistics have revealed.

And over the three-year reign of Telstra boss Sol Trujillo, complaint levels have risen by 241 per cent, figures from the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman show.

Mr Trujillo has been paid about $30 million over the same period, and is to receive a $3 million golden handshake when he steps down in June.

"It's frustrating because you can't get through and when you do no one can tell you anything," Telstra Bigpond customer Michael Murray told The Courier-Mail.

Between October last year and the end of 2008 Telstra received about 236 complaints a day, or nearly 10 an hour, about landline and mobile phone services over the three months, for a total of 21,283.

In the previous three months the phone giant received 14,014 complaints.

Over the same period, complaints about Telstra's Bigpond internet service climbed 65 per cent, from 3382 to 5607.

Mr Murray complained after his internet connection was down for four days last week, calling Telstra "10 to 12 times" asking when the problem would be fixed.

Telstra executive director of corporate complaints Chloe Monroe said the company "acknowledged these are not good results".

She said the company had put more resources into taking customer calls.

Ms Munroe said it would be "drawing a long bow" to see a connection between Mr Trujillo's time at the top and the number of complaints.

news.com.au source 6 Apr 2009

Inbreeding brought down Habsburg dynasty

The Habsburg dynasty, which ruled Spain during the height of its power and influence, may been brought down by genetic disorders caused by inbreeding, according to a new study.

The 174-year dynasty was replaced by the French Bourbons in 1700 when King Charles II died at the age of 39 without offspring.

Spanish researchers computed "the inbreeding coefficient" of the Habsburg kings to conclude that "a high incidence consanguineous marriages", or those between two close relatives, may have caused genetic disorders in Charles II.

Charles was physically and mentally disabled and disfigured, the researchers noted in their study, published in the US Public Library of Science journal PLoS ONE.

According to contemporary writings, he was unable to speak until the age of four, could not walk until the age of eight, and during the last years of his life he barely could stand up and suffered from hallucinations and convulsive episodes, it said.

"It is speculated that the simultaneous occurrence in Charles II of two different genetic disorders: combined pituitary hormone deficiency and distal renal tubular acidosis ... could explain most of the complex clinical profile of this king, including his impotence/infertility which in last instance led to the extinction of the dynasty."

It said that in a bid to maintain the dynasty, the Habsburg kings had "frequently married close relatives in such a way that uncle-niece, first cousins and other consanguineous unions were prevalent."

In total, nine of 11 marriages were "consanguineous unions in a degree of third cousins or closer."

The inbreeding coefficient increased strongly along the Habsburg generations, said the study by researchers at the University of Santiago de Compostela and the Galician Public Foundation for Genomic Medicine.

It noted a coefficent of 0.025 for King Philip I, the founder of the dynasty and who married his niece, Anne of Austria, to 0.254 for Charles II, and said several members of the dynasty had coefficients higher than 0.20.

In addition, it pointed to other evidence that infant and child mortality was very high among the Spanish Habsburgs, far higher that the rates registered for Spanish villages at the time.

"These data suggest that inbreeding depression for infant and child survival could be occurring in the Spanish Habsburg families as a consequence of prolonged consanguineous marriages."

During the Habsburg dynasty, Spain's worldwide empire reached its apogee, controlling territories in the Americas and the Philippines and parts of western Europe.

For that very reason the Royals are referred to a s "Blue Bloods".

The very public face of the Royal Family is under scrutiny here,

BUT in the Financial sector, the Dynasty of the Rothschilds is NEVER publcised. They also suffered because of inbreeding.

In the current British Windsor Family, Prince Charles exhibits the traits of an inbred.

The reason why Princess Diana was brought in is to bring new blood into the gene pool, and once her job was done she could be disposed of.

Pirates in rocket attack revenge on US ship

Somali pirates attacked an American freighter with rockets to "destroy" the ship in revenge for an operation that freed a US captain last weekend, one of their commanders said.

The freighter escaped the attack late on Tuesday, but more vessels have fallen into the hands of marauding Somali bandits. A French warship meanwhile intercepted a pirate "mother ship" and arrested 11 gunmen, the French defence ministry said.

"This attack was the first against our prime target," pirate commander Abdi Garad told AFP of the attack on the Liberty Sun freighter late on Tuesday.

"We intended to destroy this American-flagged ship and the crew on board but unfortunately they narrowly escaped us.

"The aim of this attack was totally different. We were not after a ransom. We also assigned a team with special equipment to chase and destroy any ship flying the American flag in retaliation for the brutal killing of our friends."

In another development on Wednesday, Greece said Somali pirates on Wednesday released the Greek-owned, St Vincent-flagged cargo ship that had been seized with its crew of 24 on March 19.

The Titan was sailing with a load of iron from the Black Sea to South Korea when it was seized. The crew was in good health, the merchant marine ministry in Athens said.

Pirates have taken four ships since losing two battles with US and French forces at the weekend.

Their latest target was the Liberty Sun which was heading for the Kenyan port of Mombasa with international food aid, the owners said.

The USS Bainbridge, which mounted the operation to rescue the captain of US cargo Maersk Alabama, came to the rescue of the Liberty Sun, officials said.

Crew members gave a dramatic account of the attack.

"We are under attack by pirates, we are being hit by rockets. Also bullets," crewman Thomas Urbik told his mother in email messages, CNN television reported.

"We are barricaded in the engine room and so far no one is hurt. [A] rocket penetrated the bulkhead but the hole is small. Small fire, too, but put out."

Urbik said the US Navy escorted the ship to safety. "The navy has showed up we are now under military escort," he wrote.

Garad said the attack was revenge for the weekend operation that freed Maersk Alabama captain Richard Phillips and killed three pirates.

Phillips was taken hostage on a lifeboat after his crew managed to overpower pirates who had hijacked the ship. The crew left Kenya's Mombasa port on Wednesday for home, an airport official told AFP.

The captain was freed in a spectacular Navy Seals operation Sunday which prompted US President Barack Obama to pledge tough action in the fight against piracy.

According to sources close to the pirates, French ships were also prime targets following the weekend rescue of the Tanit yacht in which a hostage and two pirates were killed.

Three Somali pirates arrested during the French military rescue operation were taken to France on Tuesday and put in custody.

On Wednesday, a French warship with an EU anti-piracy force intercepted a pirate "mother ship" and arrested 11 gunmen whom they had been pursuing since the previous day.

"The pirates were sailing a 10m mother ship carrying 17 drums holding 200 litres of fuel each and two assault skiffs," a French defence ministry spokesman said.

French commandos had already launched rescue operations in two previous cases over the past year, killing and capturing pirates.

But pirates were swift to brush off their recent losses and have attacked four more ships since.

"The pirates were sailing a 10m mother ship carrying 17 drums holding 200 litres of fuel each and two assault skiffs," a French defence ministry spokesman said.

At least 17 ships and close to 300 crew are being held by Somali pirates. Ten of the ships have been taken this month.

Experts predicted that pirate attacks and hijackings in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean would continue at a similar rate for at least another two weeks on the back of calm sea conditions.

In a statement, the top UN envoy to Somalia, Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, said robust naval operations "are sending a strong message to the pirates and, more importantly, to their backers who are exploiting the poverty and desperation of their young, unemployed compatriots."

So far Somali pirates have sought to release ships for ransoms and have not killed any hostages. But their attacks have prompted naval powers to deploy ships to patrol pirate-infested waters.

Somalia has gone through close to two decades of war and lawless chaos which have made piracy one of the few viable businesses.

Pirate Bay Trial To Receive Resolution This Week

This week, a Swedish court will decide the fate of the Pirate Bay, the Web site that provides easy access to copyrighted material like movies and music. Until last year, when it filed criminal charges against the four men who operate the file sharing directory, the Swedish government had taken little interest in regulating online piracy, which is rampant in the country. For their part, the defendants claim that they merely provided an index of content and didn't control what other people did with it.

Both sides have now presented their case, and a ruling is due by Friday, The Wall Street Journal reports. The defendants face up to two years in jail, but prosecutors are only asking for sentences of one year. The plaintiffs, big entertainment companies like Warner Bros., EMI Group Ltd. and Sony Corp.'s Columbia Pictures, are also seeking $14.2 million in compensation for lost revenue.

"The case represents the culmination of U.S. attempts to get Sweden to take intellectual-property theft more seriously," the Journal notes. In a 2007 survey, 43% of Swedes said they didn't see anything wrong with downloading entertainment without paying, and they planned to download music during the year. However, under pressure from the U.S. government, Sweden has started taking a tougher stance against piracy. Earlier this month, a new law allowed content companies to obtain names and addresses of individuals suspected of sharing copyrighted material from ISPs, a move that immediately resulted in a 40% drop in total Internet usage in the country, according to a traffic measurement firm.

mediapost.com 14 Apr 2009 article

Maybe the US Government should also take a TOUGH stance on PIRACY

off the coast of SOMALIA, where people are being KILLED !

Downloading a movie / music NEVER killed anyone.

15 April 2009

Student killed in teacher love triangle

Police say the boyfriend of a 48-year-old math teacher killed a high school student after he caught them in her bedroom having an affair.

Officers said on Tuesday that 20-year-old Sixto Balbuena found his girlfriend naked in her bedroom with 18-year-old student, Samuel Valdivia, who was wearing only boxer shorts early Friday.

Balbuena told police he kicked and punched Valdivia "to teach the victim a lesson", and then stabbed him in the side with a kitchen knife. Valdivia died at the hospital.

Balbuena was arrested on a second-degree murder charge.

He did not yet have a lawyer to speak for him.

Investors gutted after maverick walks away with $4.5 million

A maverick entrepreneur has been accused of betraying small investors after cutting a secret deal that netted him $4.5 million dollars but left others facing financial ruin.

Nicholas Bolton, a 27-year-old Melbourne businessman, yesterday won a court case that threatened the existence of Australia’s biggest road tunnel project.

Mr Bolton bought 47 million shares in BrisConnections for one-tenth of a cent each last November, unaware that the shares also required two additional installment payments of $1 per share.

Yesterday, a court ruled that an extraordinary meeting of shareholders to vote on whether BrisConnections could be wound up could go ahead.

But just hours later at the meeting, it emerged that Mr Bolton – whose company Australian Style Investments (ASI) owns 19.9 percent of BrisConnections – had sold his voting rights to another major shareholder, the roadbuilder Thiess-John Holland, for $4.5 million.

If the vote to wind the company up had been successful, both Mr Bolton and the many small investors facing huge installment payments, would have been saved. However Mr Bolton voted against all the resolutions he had proposed in an about-face that stunned investors.

Investor Luciano Giangiordano described it as "a sham".

Another unit holder John Cunningham said he was "disappointed" by both BrisConnections and Mr Bolton. "I feel most of the unit holders have been betrayed," he said.

Mr Bolton did not front the meeting, leaving investors fuming. Some are now threatening a class action against him.

It also emerged that Mr Bolton had instigated the sale of voting rights to Thiess John-Holland.

The builder said in a statement the deal, which began with an approach by Thiess to ASI last Wednesday, had been made to save "a vital piece of infrastructure for the people of Queensland".

"Thiess John Holland took this unprecedented action to seek to ensure the project continued without disruption," it said in a statement, adding the project would create around 10,000 jobs over its life.

The BrisConnections shares bought by Bolton and others are installment receipts. Investors in installment receipts pay a small initial payment when new shares are issued and then pay further installments later, usually within two years.

Mr Bolton has said little since yesterday’s extraordinary meeting but claims he still faces the massive installment payments despite the sale of voting rights.

A Facebook fan page, which had been set up in the weeks leading up to yesterday’s meeting, had today been removed from the social networking website.

The fan page described Mr Bolton as “Dude of Corporate Australia”.

money.ninemsn 15 Apr 2009

Film studios battle iiNet in court

A group of film studios fighting internet provider iiNet for allegedly allowing copyright movies to be illegally shared between customers has been told by the Federal Court to produce more evidence.

The syndicate of studios, headed by Village Roadshow, hopes to prove iiNet not only failed to take steps to stop illegal file-sharing by customers but breached copyright itself by storing and transmitting the data through its system.

The internet provider wanted the claim alleging it had breached copyright struck out, but in the Federal Court in Sydney on Wednesday, Justice Dennis Cowdroy ruled the claim could stay, instead ordering the film companies to provide more supporting information.

"Rather than strike out ... or enter judgment on this issue, the court will require Roadshow to amend the conversion claim to specify exactly what the infringing copies are, how they are created and at least one instance of them," he said in his ruling.

That order constituted a partial victory on a significant issue for iiNet.

Justice Cowdroy also ruled that any hearing on damages be separate to the copyright proceedings relating to the 86 films allegedly infringed.

iiNet failed to limit the implications of the case to those 86 films from the Roadshow's catalogue.

"If Roadshow establishes an infringement of copyright in the 86 films, such finding may provide a basis to extend any injunctive relief to the whole film catalogue," Justice Cowdroy said.

iiNet had also sought to have a claim struck out alleging its users had copied the downloaded films onto DVD to watch and distribute.

The allegation is based on conversations on internet forums about making DVDs from downloaded copies of films, which iiNet says are irrelevant because the people are unidentified and live in different countries with different copyright regimes.

But Justice Cowdroy said: "Such evidence may be sufficient to enable Roadshow to argue that inferences should be drawn that the conduct complained of ... is occurring.

"The court is mindful that if the evidence of Roadshow proves inadequate to satisfy the requisite burden of proof, such claim will fail."

The companies, Village Roadshow, Universal Pictures, Warner Bros Entertainment, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Disney Enterprises and the Seven Network, launched the action against iiNet in November.

Both parties were ordered to pay their own costs.

The matter has been set down for a directions hearing on July 29

ninemsn 15 Apr 2009

The Hollywood Financial Lobby will be successful in it's bid to stop people 'stealing' from them.

The financial purse strings in Hollywood are kept by four families.

14 April 2009

Madonna son has Aussie accent: ex-nanny

Madonna's adopted son has an Aussie accent and is an AFL convert, thanks to his former Australian nanny.

Angela Jacobsen, originally from Melbourne, worked until recently as the carer for David Banda, the boy Madonna adopted from Malawi in 2006.

Ms Jacobsen has told New Idea magazine, on sale from Monday, that David speaks with an Australian accent.

She says she encouraged David's interest in AFL, even teaching him the Hawthorn club song.

"A friend sent David a Hawthorn shirt. Then when (older brother) Rocco saw it, he wanted one, so the club sent a box of goodies out to them," she told the magazine.

"I taught David the club song and he would get on the phone to my brother Brad and say: 'Go the Hawks.'"

Ms Jacobsen, 29, said she was made redundant recently because Madonna needed a French-speaking nanny to care for David, as all her children go to French school.

Working for the pop queen was filled with perks, and Jacobsen said she was treated like family.

"Everyone has this image that working for Madonna is a 24/7 draconian experience.

"But I got weekends off when a weekend nanny replaced me.

"I'd jump on a plane, bus or train and see more of wherever we were in the world."

Jacobsen said she would love to keep in touch with David but doesn't think she'll be allowed to.

She said she may follow in Madonna's footsteps and adopt a child.

"I'd love to adopt a child like him from Malawi."

ninemsn 13 Apr 2009

Irrespective of her fame / fortune, the actions are nothing more that PURE TpT.

Madonna uses the Black baby thing as a PET rather than a human, following the trend in Hollywood.

She does not even take care of herself, but rather pass it on to a nanny.

Woman burnt alive for alleged kidnapping

A woman was burnt alive by a mob in southern Nepal after she was accused of trying to kidnap a toddler, Nepalese media reports said on Monday.

A crowd in Bharatpur village in Dhanusa district, about 250km southeast of the Nepalese capital Kathmandu, on Sunday seized the woman, doused her with petrol and set her on fire after accusing her of trying to kidnap a baby from the village, the independent Kantipur Television said.

The woman, about 35 years old, died instantly, police said. She could not be identified as her body was charred beyond recognition.

Dhanusa in southern Nepal is one of several districts in the region that is plagued by growing lawlessness and violence.

Several armed groups operate in the area, and people have often taken law into their own hands in the absence of state authorities.

Several reports of violence against women have occurred in the district.

Last year, a female journalist, who wrote on violence against women, was stabbed to death in the same district.

The incident was seen as an attempt by organised groups and individuals to silence critics voicing their opposition to violence against women.

14 Apr 2009

What else is one to expect from these Neanderthals.

The entire area should be exterminated from this vermin on the planet.

Union claims prison brawl involved bikie

The NSW Department of Corrective Services misled the public by denying a brawl at a Sydney jail was bikie gang related, the prison officers union says.

The Public Service Association (PSA) said its members were outraged the department had downplayed the Good Friday incident at Parklea prison.

Department of Corrective Services deputy commissioner Ian McLean on Sunday said reports of Notorious gang members attacking a Bandidos member were exaggerated.

He said the fight during Friday's morning muster involved seven prisoners and the victim was not a bikie.

But PSA Prison Officers Vocational Branch chairman Matt Bindley on Tuesday said any suggestion the victim was not a Bandido was "complete and utter nonsense".

Mr Bindley said he'd seen the paperwork showing he was a member of the outlaw motorbike gang.

The department was trying to downplay the incident because it had allowed members of rival bikie gangs to get at each other, he said.

"They are ducking and diving because they've made a mistake in this," he told AAP.

"As a result of their mistake there has been an incident, so I'd say they've got to downplay it to a certain degree."

The incident left one guard with a broken finger and four with cuts and bruises.

A two-hour stop work meeting of prison officers at the jail on Tuesday called on the Department of Corrective Services to give a true and accurate account of what occurred on Friday.

Mr Bindley said prison officers would await the department's response before deciding if further industrial action would be taken.

The PSA and the Department of Corrective Services are at loggerheads over the NSW government's decision to privatise Parklea and Cessnock Jail in the Hunter Valley.

ninemsn 14 Apr 2009

It is quite normal for government institutions to mislead the public.

But it is quite the opposite to admit this.

In this Technological era it is easier to dispel a lot of cover-ups.

Ambulance service apologises to Iredales

The NSW Ambulance Service has given a formal apology to the family of a boy who died after getting lost in the bush, admitting they failed to deal adequately with a series of desperate phone calls from the dying teen.

David Iredale became separated from school friends while on a bushwalk in the Blue Mountains and made a series of calls to 000 begging for help after his third day in the open and 24 hours without water.

But when he told emergency operators he was lost, feeling faint and couldn't walk far, they kept asking him where the nearest street was and what suburb he was in — despite him repeatedly stating that he was lost in the wilderness.

During a coronial enquiry in Sydney, service counsel Michael Windsor SC admitted to theshortcomings of staff, who had failed even to ask the distraught boy's name.

"The Service acknowledges that there was a failure on its part to accurately convey the details of the conversations with David Iredale to police," he said.

"The Service unreservedly apologises to the Iredale family because of the failures."

David's parents, Stephen and Maryanne Iredale, had to leave the room when recordings of David's final moments were played.

In them, he explained he hadn't drunk water "for a long period of time" and in the final calls apologised for forgetting the name of the track he was on — only to be told "don't keep saying that, just tell me where you are".

Search parties eventually found David's body eight days after his death and only 200m from the Mt Solitary walking track he had identified during his earlier phone calls.

David and two of his schoolmates had undertaken their hike in the belief it would count towards a Duke of Edinburgh Award.

ninemsn 14 Apr 2009

This is one of the LARGEST technological FARCES, that ultimately cost a child life.

Telecommunications companies use Tower Triangulation to establish the position of ANY mobile call, and have been doing so for quite some time.

This fact is generally NOT know to the general public.

Politicians and Telecommunications companies CANNOT and WILL NOT admit that mobile telephone technology existed. It is 'marketed' under AGPS, and sold with maps which gives the user the allusion that they are in control.

In this case it has cost the life of an innocent child.

Nine-year-old boy attacked by croc in NT

A nine-year-old boy has become the third person to be attacked by a crocodile in the Northern Territory within a month.

Two earlier attacks claimed the lives of an 11-year-old girl and a 20-year-old man.

The boy, who was fishing at Adelaide River on Easter Sunday when the crocodile lunged at him about 10.30am (CST), managed to escape with only minor injuries.

He received stitches for a puncture wound to his hand at a local medical clinic.

"I believe that the boy was the only one who saw it so no-one knows whether it was a saltie or a freshie, or what size it was," said a police spokeswoman.

"It sounds like a croc just came out of the water and went chomp."

A trap was set in the area almost a month ago after a large saltie, believed to be about five metres, was spotted in the river.

The river is known for it's large population of saltwater crocodiles and is about 114km south of Darwin.

News of the attack comes a day before the NT government is due to release its revised crocodile management plan.

Safari hunting and widespread culling is under consideration, along with the removal of crocodiles from a 50-kilometre zone around Darwin.

Independent Member for Nelson Gerry Wood on Tuesday described the plan as "science fiction, not science".

"You will be doing it for ever and a day," he said.

"I am not against some culling but to have a 50km croc free zone doesn't make any sense, it's not practical and the amount of resources and finances that it would cost would be enormous...

"There has to be an element of common sense as well ... we have to learn to live with them."

Two fatal attacks have sparked debate about the methods to control the NT's crocodile population, recently estimated to be the highest in Australia at more than 80,000.

Last Friday, a man was fatally attacked a day before his 21st birthday while swimming across the Daly River, 150km south of Darwin.

The father of two, who cannot be named for cultural reasons, was swimming across the croc-infested river with his cousin.

A 4.3-metre crocodile believed to be responsible for the attack was destroyed the following day.

The reptile that killed 11-year-old Briony Goodsell last month is still at large.

The little girl was swimming with her sister and two friends when she was dragged under the water by a crocodile at Black Jungle Swamp, in rural Darwin.

ninemsn 14 Apr 2009

Again it is because of human stupidity that the animal kingdom MUST suffer.

The signs are CLEARLY visible and are there for a reason.

Animal Instincts 101 : Crocodile, primitive. Body in water = FOOD !!

As much as this is a 'tragedy / 'accident' the fundamental laws of nature are ignore by the so called 'intelligent' species.

Savvy young heirs give Mexico drug cartels new face

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Shunning the gem-studded pistols and gold chains flaunted by their fathers, a savvy new generation of drug smugglers is moving up the ranks of Mexico's cartels wielding college degrees and keeping low profiles to outsmart police.

The fashionably-dressed sons of two prominent drug bosses were recently arrested in smart Mexico City neighborhoods, suspected of laundering money for the Juarez and Sinaloa cartels while moving seamlessly among the country's elite.

They typify a new wave of leaders of Mexico's warring drug cartels, whose turf wars killed 6,300 people last year. Often the urbane offspring of cartel founders, they bring a clean-cut management style to the murky multibillion dollar enterprise.

"These people are usually better prepared, better educated and very useful for the cartels because they're professionals," said political analyst Jorge Chabat.

"They're harder to identify because they don't look like typical drug traffickers," he said. "You can't detect them by saying 'Oh look, he has a big truck with wide tires and automatic weapons, gold chains, snakeskin boots and a big belt buckle and dark glasses.'"

President Felipe Calderon has put dozens of top traffickers behind bars, along with thousands of low-level hitmen and drug runners, in an army-led war on cartels that has Washington worried about a possible spillover of violence.

For years the classic image of a Mexican drug baron has been of a macho gunslinger who revels in an ostentatious lifestyle of bad taste. But that may be changing.

Vicente Carrillo Leyva, the suave 32-year-old son of legendary drug lord Amado Carrillo Fuentes, was nabbed last week while jogging in a park near his house in the capital's most exclusive district and paraded in front of news cameras in a slick white Abercrombie & Fitch sweatsuit and trendy specs.

His late father was known as the "Lord of the Skies" for flying jets full of cocaine to the United States in the 1990s. A high-living patriarch, when he died he was building himself an extravagant four-level palace in the Mexican border city of Nogales with soaring white domes and a 12-foot exterior wall.

Carrillo Leyva, nicknamed "The Engineer", grew up among a wealthy elite, was educated abroad and enjoyed frequent trips to Europe. He reportedly speaks English and French well and had invested in a high-end boutique selling Versace clothes.

Neighbors said he lived a low-profile life.

"No parties, no noise; these neighbors were very discreet. The young man went out running in the morning and his wife was very nice," a local resident told El Universal newspaper.


Also captured this month, Vicente Zambada, 33, the son of Sinaloa cartel boss Ismael "El Mayo" Zambada, lived a little larger, with luxury cars and five armed body guards.

But in his toned-down outfit of jeans, pressed shirt and jacket, he was undistinguishable from the young professionals who crowd Mexico's upscale bars and restaurants. Read full story here

Reuters 8 Apr 2009

The mass media unfortunately idolises and romatiscises the drug industry.

The authorities are fully aware of the large drug cartels, and it's only the small fry that are uncomfortable, that are usually prosecuted or exterminated. Far too little is done to kerb the drug problem.

Since Politicians, Law Makers and the Police are involved there is a PHENOMENAL amount of money to be made in drugs ($18 Billion in Australia for 2008), which are distributed to the children of the masses.

Pressure to rein in 'corrupt' colleges

THE Federal Government is facing mounting internal pressure to launch a co-ordinated nationwide crackdown on corrupt training colleges that are making millions of dollars a year exploiting foreign students by breaching immigration and education laws.

Senior officials from government departments have told The Age that widespread rackets among private trades colleges are "out of control" and undermining Australia's education, immigration and employment systems.

Complex networks linking unscrupulous private colleges, migration agents, education agents and businesses offering work experience indicated the involvement of organised crime, one official said.

The officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said serious problems existed at several levels: colleges and agents were fleecing students using forged certificates and immigration fraud; government agencies charged with checking the credentials of students entering the country were "lackadaisical"; and some students were complicit in scams aimed at securing permanent residency in Australia.

They said that while individual government departments and agencies were belatedly stepping up efforts to deal with the problem, a unified response from the Commonwealth was being hampered by a lack of co-ordination, confusion over jurisdictions, and a reluctance to upset a lucrative industry.

"It's out of control," one of the officials said. "In the current economic climate … I think people are fairly reticent to try to fiddle with this huge earner in Australia."

International education is a $13.7 billion industry, making it the nation's third largest export after coal and iron. Australia has the highest proportion (19 per cent) of international students of any OECD country. Full story here

The Age 14 Apr 2009

Corrupt Colleges / Universities is really nothing new. Australian learning institutions have been doing this for quite some time. Even with recorded acts it would be difficult to prosecute.

Since the advent of GLOBALISATION (ie. the deliberate breakdown of economic barriers) the market is rife. Universities are prone to discriminate and take in 'foreign' students as the BUY the degrees from the institution.

This move is supported by Politicians, coporations and Law makers are there are HUGE benefits in all aspects ofthe community, including cheap 'slave' labour.

It is NOT in the interest of the ruling hirarchy to stop this kind of behaviour.