shniad | 1 Sep 01:18 2005

Katrina sends some hedge funds soaring

CNN/Money      August 31, 2005 

Katrina sends some hedge funds soaring

A spike in oil prices netted a hefty profit for some funds.

NEW YORK - Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on New Orleans, but it sent some
investment portfolios sky high. 

Trend-following hedge funds, which trade systematically based on
mathematical models, profited handsomely from the spike in oil. Many of
these funds had long positions in oil – meaning they were betting prices
would continue to rise – before Hurricane Katrina touched down in Louisiana.

Post-hurricane, crude oil prices shot up about $3 a barrel – or $3,000 per
futures contract. While the NYMEX exchange limits funds to 20,000 contracts,
most funds hold between 5,000 to 10,000, according to traders. A fund with
10,000 contracts would have netted a cool $15 million from the $3 spike.

The hurricane, which has killed at least 120 people according to the latest
estimates, hit Louisiana on Monday. Estimates of the insured losses vary
widely, but risk modeling firm Equecat estimated the damages at between $9
billion and $16 billion.

The hurricane damaged refineries, meaning that even if the oil could be
imported, it couldn't be refined.

Katrina forced the closure of more than a tenth of the United States'
(Continue reading)

shniad | 1 Sep 01:28 2005

Katrina's real name

The Boston Globe     August 30, 2005

Katrina's real name

By Ross Gelbspan	

The hurricane that struck Louisiana yesterday was nicknamed Katrina by the
National Weather Service. Its real name is global warming.

When the year began with a two-foot snowfall in Los Angeles, the cause was
global warming.

When 124-mile-an-hour winds shut down nuclear plants in Scandinavia and cut
power to hundreds of thousands of people in Ireland and the United Kingdom,
the driver was global warming.

When a severe drought in the Midwest dropped water levels in the Missouri
River to their lowest on record earlier this summer, the reason was global

In July, when the worst drought on record triggered wildfires in Spain and
Portugal and left water levels in France at their lowest in 30 years, the
explanation was global warming.

When a lethal heat wave in Arizona kept temperatures above 110 degrees and
killed more than 20 people in one week, the culprit was global warming.

And when the Indian city of Bombay (Mumbai) received 37 inches of rain in
one day -- killing 1,000 people and disrupting the lives of 20 million
others -- the villain was global warming.
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james m nordlund | 1 Sep 05:08 2005

Hao. C Dann + WSDP Alerts: FW: CERD Decision about U.S., etc..

Mitakuye Oyasin,  

FW: CERD Decision about the United States
Western Shoshone Defense Project
P.O. Box 211308
Crescent Valley, NV   89821
(775) 468-0230
Fax:  (775) 468-0237

-----Original Message-----
From: Kent Lebsock [mailto:kent <at>] 
Sent: Wednesday, August 31, 2005 8:20 AM
To: kent <at>
Subject: CERD Decision about the United States

The following deals specifically with a decision by CERD relative to
United States discrimination against Indigenous peoples and is a critical
step forward in international reaction to the American abuses both
contemporary and historical.

United Nations calls for U.S. accountability re. Western Shoshone
United Nations calls for U.S. accountability
by: Brenda Norrell / Indian Country Today, Posted: August 29, 2005

GENEVA - A United Nations committee on racial discrimination has asked the
United States to respond to the Western Shoshone appeal for urgent
intervention, regarding the attack on their spiritual and cultural areas
(Continue reading)

Fred Feldman | 1 Sep 06:40 2005

Mayor turns cops loose against New Orleans Blacks (aka "looters")

The New Orleans mayor has ordered police to stop "looting" in a city
which he says will be uninhabitable for at least the next three months,
reports the article below from today's NY Times.  To accomplish this, he
is unleashing the police force -- which has been being used to find
injured survivors -- for action against the city's Black community.

The cops are being given a license to kill, in circumstances in which
the whole Black population of the city has been systematically
criminalized by the media nationally. The campaign to scapegoat the
Black survivors in the ruined city is likely to reach a bloody new
stage? The victims of the catastrophe -- labelled as "the worst in us"
-- are to be sacrificed to the political coverup of the perpetrators of
the catastrophe (who represent, of course, the best we have to offer). 

And in paragraph 9, the Timespeople pause for a moment to ponder a
"paradox" that this whole disaster can yet become a zillion dollar
boondoggle for the capitalists and politicians.  But first, let's kill
some "looters"! Tomorrow is another day. Fred Feldman 

New Orleans, Police Ordered to Stop Looters By ROBERT D. McFADDEN and
RALPH BLUMENTHAL NEW ORLEANS, Aug. 31-Chaos gripped New Orleans on
Wednesday as looters ran wild, food and water supplies dwindled, bodies
floated in the floodwaters, the evacuation of the Superdome began and
officials said there was no choice but to abandon the city devastated by
Hurricane Katrina, perhaps for months. President Bush pledged vast
assistance, but acknowledged, "This recovery will take years." 

For the first time, a New Orleans official suggested the scope of the
death toll. Mayor C. Ray Nagin said the hurricane may have killed
thousands in his city alone, an estimate that, if correct, would make it
(Continue reading)

Fred Feldman | 1 Sep 12:57 2005

AP article signals racist killings by NO cops are underway

Unlike earlier versions on MSNBC, this one characterizes the "looting"
as "increasingly hostile," claims that police are being shot at,
suggests a house to house search or something of the sort for weapons,
while portraying the police as dangerously short of firepower.  So it
sounds like a heavily armed attack on the survivors (aka "looters") in
the Black community is underway and the cops want to maximize their

The cops are in a strong position to get away with murder because of the
isolation of New Orleans and the inability of residents to communicate
with the outside world, except through the media, who are in lockstep
cooperation with the cops.  It is also possible in these circumstances
to fold those killed by cops into the hundreds or thousands of dead
already in the city, or to attribute killings to looters.

A picture of a Black youth being held against a wall by a gun weilding
NO cop appeared briefly on the MSNBC website and then disappeared after
midnight last night.
Fred Feldman
New Orleans mayor orders looting crackdown 
Thousands feared dead from Katrina's wrath; stadium evacuation begins

The Associated Press
Updated: 3:30 a.m. ET Sept. 1, 2005

NEW ORLEANS - Mayor Ray Nagin ordered 1,500 police officers to leave
their search-and-rescue mission Wednesday night and return to the
streets of the beleaguered city to stop looting that has turned
(Continue reading)

james m nordlund | 1 Sep 15:18 2005

Peaceful Tomorrows: Support memorial to Iraqi civilians killed

Support the memorial to Iraqi civilians killed in war 

Volunteers will be helping to build the labyrinth in each city. To help in
your area, email ewo <at>

Upcoming dates:

July 1-4: Philadelphia, PA

July 6-8: Blacksburg, VA

July 20-23: Ann Arbor, MI

September 9-11: Baltimore, MD

September 23-25: Lancaster, PA

Sept. 29 - Oct. 1: Minneapolis, MN

October 6-9: Ithaca, NY

October 10-18: Newark, NJ / New York, NY

Dear Friends,

We are excited to announce that the interactive memorial to Iraqi
civilians killed in war-- a "shoe labyrinth" created by September 11th
Families for Peaceful Tomorrows will now be traveling with the Eyes Wide
Open exhibit to cities across the country. The first stop will be
Philadelphia for the July 4th weekend where we expect more than 15,000
(Continue reading)

Fred Feldman | 1 Sep 15:46 2005

The racist crime of NO grows: police called in to "gain control" of Superdome
Superdome exodus on hold after shots 
Looting worse, more National Guard arrive; storm deaths may be thousands

NBC, MSNBC and news services
Updated: 8:51 a.m. ET Sept. 1, 2005

It is beginning to look like my description on one list last night of
New Orleans as a US "Caracazo," on top of a capitalism-made "natural"
disaster, was less an exaggeration than a little bit ahead of the curve.
The Caracazo was a spontaneous explosion of people suffering from
hunger, misery, and official indifference and brutality  in Caracas in
1989.  Popular outrage against the savage repression that followed
eventually led to the Venezuelan revolution of today.(I am not
predicting whether the outcome of this will be so positive.)

Notice how Gov. Barbour made Wolf Blitzer's mot juste his own, labelling
those who seek to survive or assert their rights in this situation as
"the worst in us," while the authorities take understandable pride in
representing the best.

It looks like the Superdome and eventually the Astrodome are slated to
become Guantanamo West. 
Fred Feldman

NEW ORLEANS - National Guard troops in armored vehicles poured into New
Orleans on Thursday to curb the growing lawlessness that included shots
fired at a helicopter airlifting people out of the Superdome and
carjackings of buses helping with evacuations. 

(Continue reading)

David Mcreynolds | 1 Sep 22:27 2005

New Orleans - the steps that must be taken

All of us have been watching television, transfixed by the reality that one of the great cities of our nation
is gone, drowned in water.

Much of the tragedy along the Gulf Coast could not have been avoided - a hurricane is a hurricane. We
ourselves, at our safe distance,
are slow to grasp the dimensions of what has happened. Bodies floating in the water. People standing on roof
tops waving for help.
I  sit in my air conditioned apartment,  clean water and  ice cubes just a few steps away, and slowly understand
that for
these hundreds of thousands from Mobile to New Orleans there is nowhere to go that is cool, no food safe to
eat, no
water that is safe to drink. No medicine, not even aspirin.

Piled in vast lumps of wreckage are the wedding pictures,  baby pictures, the documents that certify us,
passports, birth records,
financial reports, insurance papers, the knick knacks of every home.  

We want to blame someone and the blame pours in over the internet. Someone even blamed  homosexuals for
causing this - God
destroyed New Orleans because of its immorality. And we blame Bush, and global warming.   Then we want to
blame the blamers
for trying to take political advantage of this tragedy. One man, that I know is conservative, but with whom I
exchange occasional friendly notes,
wrote to demand I take him off my lists, because I was taking political advantage of this tragedy by posting
something from the New Orleans
press, noting this disaster has been in the making for a long time.

Bush didn't cause the hurricane. It  would have been politically advisable for him to cancel his vacation
when it became clear
that Katrina was shaping up to be a disaster, rather than waiting until there were only two days left of his
(Continue reading)

Tom Childs | 2 Sep 00:13 2005

Finally...Bush admits war in Iraq for oil 

War in Iraq
Iraq war keeps oil from terrorists, Bush says 

August 31, 2005


CORONADO, Calif. -- President Bush on Tuesday answered growing anti-war
protests with a fresh reason for American troops to continue fighting in
Iraq: protection of the country's vast oil fields that he said would
otherwise fall under the control of terrorist extremists.

Bush, a onetime oilman, has rejected charges that the war in Iraq is a
struggle to control the nation's vast oil wealth.

But on Tuesday, Bush said the Iraqi oil industry, already suffering
from sabotage and lost revenues, must not fall under the control of
Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida forces in Iraq led by Abu Musab

Compares resolve to FDR's

''If Zarqawi and bin Laden gain control of Iraq, they would create a
new training ground for future terrorist attacks,'' Bush said. ''They'd
seize oil fields to fund their ambitions.''

Appearing at the Naval Air Station North Island to commemorate the
anniversary of the Allies' World War II victory over Japan, Bush
(Continue reading)

shniad | 2 Sep 02:34 2005

How the US got its neoliberal way in Iraq's constitution

How the US got its neoliberal way in Iraq's constitution

The United States' hands-on and far from impartial involvement in the
drafting of Iraq's constitution has ensured that the document is friendly
to big, international business. When Iraqis vote on the draft in October,
essentially they will be deciding whether to control their oil riches or
hand them over to foreign oil companies. 

By Herbert Docena 
Asia Times Online, September 1, 2005

Article 25: "The state shall guarantee the reforming of the Iraqi economy
according to modern economic bases, in a way that ensures complete
investment of its resources, diversifying its sources and encouraging and
developing the private sector."

Article 26:
³The country shall guarantee the encouragement of investments in the
different sectors.²

Article 110:
³The federal government and the governments of the producing regions and
provinces together will draw up the necessary strategic policies to develop
oil and gas wealth to bring the greatest benefit for the Iraqi people,
relying on the most modern techniques of market principles and encouraging

LAST JUNE 30, the Iraqi newspaper Al-Mada published the latest draft of the
(Continue reading)