And we wanted to go further: the plan argues that in the process of fundamentally changing our country to make it green, we also have a once-in-a-century opportunity to make it fairer. We could redress terrible incorrects done to indigenous peoples; radically reduce economic, racial and gender inequalities; eliminate legal double the criteria for immigrant workers; and create a whole lot of stable, well-paying tasks. In very un-Canadian fashion, we even dared to hope that the manifesto might become a model for similar broad-based confederations in other countries.
The text we came up with was unabashedly radical, and it went on to be endorsed by more than 100 organisations. An array of Canadian celebrities also added their names: Leonard Cohen, Donald Sutherland and Ellen Page, among others.
Our first challenge was what to call it. We wanted to convey the necessity of achieving speed, since as Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the UN framework convention on climate change, said recently: Where capital goes in the next five years will decide what kind of world we have.
One suggestion was The Leap. And yes, we worried about inevitable comparings to Mao Zedongs disastrous Great Leap Forward. But what ultimately tip-off the balance in its favour was when we realised that 2016 is a leap year.
It wasnt just good timing, we supposed, but a powerful analogy. After all, we periodically add an extra day to our calendars because if we didnt, the seasons would gradually fall out of alignment and eventually the seasons would go wacky. Imaging New Yorkers doing their Christmas shopping in T-shirts( oh right, that happened ).
It was Julius Caesar, in 46 BC, who decided to bring the 365 -day solar calendar to the Romans, throwing in that extra day every four years. He wasnt known as a humble man, but even a dictator in perpetuity realised that it was easier to change regulations written by other humen than it is to change the laws of nature.
Thats a lesson worth re-learning and fast. Like the Romans with their failing calendar, we find ourselves trapped within multiple failing systems: economic, political, even spiritual. And all these system failings have put humanity on a collision course with countries around the world, which warms and writhes the more we refuse to recognise its limits.
With this in mind, the manifesto not only calls for a rapid change to 100% renewable electricity, it insists that these new energy projects should be democratically controlled and that indigenous peoples should be first to receive public is supportive of their own clean energy projects. So should communities currently dealing with heavy health the health effects of polluting industrial activity.
To pay for all this, we called for dramatic changes to how public revenues are collected and spent, from an end to fossil fuel subsidies, and higher royalty rates on fossil fuel extraction, to cuts in military spending. And those are just a few of its 15 demands.
The plan captured the imagination of many Canadians. Burned out by decades of the struggle against what they dont want tar sands pipelines, explosion petroleum develops, draconian security bills they seized on the chance to rally around a vision for the world they actually wishes to. On leap day later this month, there will be sessions, teach-ins and other events across the country, all of them pushing our new government to adopt a holistic approach to the twin crisis of climate change and inequality.
Two millennia ago, Julius Caesar realised that there was something even more powerful than his empire: the planets revolution around the sunlight. Today, we need a different kind of solar revolution, one that doesnt only change how we generate our power, but also who benefits.
Heres the good news: we have the momentum to make that leap from the recent victories against Keystone XL and Shells Arctic drilling, to the surprising strength of Bernie Sanders presidential campaign.
So take a minute or two to be considered the extra day at the end of this month. Its a reminder that people can indeed are working together to change a failing decide of rules. The the statutes of nature , not so much.
Then lets make this 2016 the year we started to bridge the chasm between what is, and what must be. Lets make it the year we started to leap.
The Leap Manifesto, along with a listing of its original signatories, can be read in 10 languages here. To find out about leap year activities visit leapyear2 016. org. On Friday 5 February, Naomi Klein is co-hosting a leap year-themed Google hangout with Bill McKibben of 350. org, Asad Rehman of Friends of the Earth and others. Register here.
Earlier this week, we reported onan endlessly creepy puzzle video that was confounding and unsettling everyone who watched it. In the working day since, the narrative has grown far strangerbut the identity of the person responsible for the threatening messages remains as clouded as ever.
The video, which spread quickly across YouTube and was allegedly discovered on a DVD on a park bench in Spain, contains a apparently endless number of puzzles, both obvious and obscure. Numerous interested parties have been working to unearth the mysteries held within, and several bits of new information have emerged.
Perhaps most disturbing revelation of all is that the Morse code puzzle, which was translated into RED LIPSLIKE TENTH, has been discovered to be an anagrams of KILL THE PRESIDENT. This, coupled with the previously discovered hidden GPS coordinates of the White House, paints a vivid menace.
The disturbing video clip hid images in its audio track that could only be decoded with advanced software. The photos, which included a woman being strangled, a disemboweled body, and other graphic scenes, have been traced to various sources on the Internet.
One of the embedded photos is from a horror movie called The Bunny Game , another is from a German film called Slasher , and a third is an actual crime-scene photo showing a victim of Albert DeSalvo, better known as the Boston Strangler. While all of the photos are disturbing , none of them originated with the video itself. This should offer a little bit of relief to those speculate that the clip came from a serial murderer showcasing his crimes.
As for the source of the video, one apparently promising result comes from a cached version of a now-defunct website. The blog for Triton TV, a University of California, San Diego film group, indicated a screencap of the disturbing video along with a title and description written solely in binary code. The Daily Dot reached out to Triton TV only to discover that the blog in question had been hacked only weeks prior. Whoever brought down the site chose to upload whatever creepy YouTube videos they could find, seemingly at random, in its endeavour to troll people.
Another result also failed to pan out when one Parker Wright, whose name was on one of the accounts that uploaded the video, was mistaken for another Parker Wright.
Amateur sleuths had closely watched the Twitter account of Parker J. Wright, expecting it to yield new information. The Daily Dot reached out to him to see if he participated in the video, but he was just as disturbed by it as everyone else and promptly denied any association with it or its creators.
@MikeWehner A bunch of people are tweeting me about it. No I was not involved in that video in any way.
Not all results have led to dead end. Some serious digging brought confirmation of the place where the video was shooting. The derelict building shown in the video is the Zofiwka Sanatorium located in Otwock, Poland. The now-abandoned build was once a mental-health facility.
Photoblogger Miniwycieczkicaptured an image in 2013 from a room in the facility that appears almost identical to the images seen in the video.
A more recent photo, whichSzary Burekcaptured in April2 015, also shows the room, and this time it includes all of the subtle details visible in the video clip, including the graffiti that appears as the video progresses.
There’s little doubt that this is the building in the video. Devoted that it is abandoned, it’s impossible to know who might have decided to use it as a backdrop for their unsettling puzzle.
The dates of the photos confirm that the video was generated sometime between November 2013 and April 2015. The video was first considered online on May 9, 2015.
The tech blog that most recently acquired the video, GadgetZZ, used to say the disc it received received from Poland, but the uploader of the original YouTube copy, AETBX, maintained that it was found on a park bench in Spain.
Hundreds of people continue to investigate new results and post their findings on Reddit.
Experts from 15 countries tell regulation needed to prevent vulnerable patients pursuing unproven and potentially deadly treatments
Medical and legal experts from around the world have unified to call for more stringent regulation of stem cell therapies to prevent people pursuing unproven and potentially deadly treatments overseas.
In a perspective piece for the US journal Science Translational Medicine, 15 experts from countries including the UK, the US, Canada, Belgium, Italy and Japan wrote that national efforts alone would not be enough to counter an industry offering unproven therapies to vulnerable patients.
Stem cell-based interventions are classified under diverse and potentially incompatible national regulatory frameworks, the authors wrote.
Approaches for international regulation not only need to develop consistent regulations over the commercialisation of medical practices and products but also need to give them teeth by developing cross-border partnerships for compliance.
Stem cells found in bone marrow and umbilical cord blood have long been used to successfully treat blood cancers including leukaemia and some immune illness. But those are among the few proven therapies. Legitimate and ethics-approved clinical trials by academic centres are also resulting, investigating the potential of stem cells to treat a wider range of diseases.
But some physicians are directly offering to the general public stem cell treatments for illness still under clinical trial or for which no evidence exists and for which the safety and efficacy is as yet unproven.
Deaths as a result of stem cell treatments have already resulted. In 2013 Sheila Drysdale died in a New South Wales nursing home after undergoing an unproven liposuction stem-cell therapy at a western Sydney clinic. Following Drysldales death, her doctor, Ralph Bright, gave a statement to police in which he claimed that stem-cell therapy could improve comorbidities and that stem cells could move from joints to other parts of the body to improve illnes in distant sites including lungs and brain, vision, mentation and pain.
In his report into Drysdales death, the coroner Hugh Dillon wrote that he could not say what motivated Dr Bright to perform this unproven, dubious procedure on Sheila Drysdale.
But regardless of his motivating, Dr Brights performance as a medical practitioner was, for the reasons outlined above, poor and resulted in Sheila Drysdales death.
The Medical Council of NSW investigated Bright and placed a number of restrictions on his right to practise. Bright is still authorised to practise stem cell therapy for patients with osteoarthritis or who are taking part in research studies approved by an ethics committee. He is also still allowed to treat patients returning for remaining injections of stored cells.
In 2013 a Queensland woman, Kellie van Meurs, died when she travelled to Russia to undergo stem-cell treatment for a rare neurological disorder. She died of a heart attack as a result.
Australias drug regulator, the Therapeutic Goods Administration, last year sought feedback on the regulation of autologous stem-cell therapies but is yet to publish those submissions. A TGA spokeswoman said the Administration was still examining the options for changes to the legislation to reflect public and industry opinions. The TGA currently considers autologous therapies, which involve treating someone with their own tissue or cells, to be a therapeutic good and, hence, does not govern them. Stem cells used for medical practise and therapeutic purposes are covered by different regulatory frameworks.
Associate Professor Megan Munsie, a University of Melbourne stem cell scientist and a co-author of the paper, said: The notion that stem cells are magical holds court in the community, along with this idea the advances in treatment are being held up by red tape.
Unethical health practitioners exploited this, she said, along with the vulnerability of patients with difficult-to-treat or incurable conditions.
There is a precedent for international regulation of this industry because regulations already exist around narcotics the way they are manufactured, she said.
This could be extended to the regulation to the stem cell and tissue-based therapies. This international stance would then force or foster stronger local regulations.
There have been successful endeavors by scientists to push back against unscrupulous physicians. In Italy scientists and regulators highlighted the unproven yet government-subsidised treatments being offered by the entrepreneur Davide Vannoni and fought to stop him. He was convicted of criminal charges but the sentence was subsequently suspended.
( CNN) After President-elect Donald Trump’s recent victory, some of his supporters celebrated by flying Confederate battle flags from pickup trucks and waving them at rallies.
But Trump’s victory may mark the resurgence of the Old South in another more sinister route: The return of “racial amnesia.”
That’s what some historians are saying as they watch a familiar storyline emerge. Trump’s triumph is now being roundly described as a insurrection by white working-class voters; racism, sexism and religious intolerance had little, if anything, to do with it.
Adam Buxtons life-affirming, jingle-packed ramble chats with his celebrity guests are a constant delight. In this two-parter, the multi-talented Ayoade went into everything from the height of pillows to the reaction to his notoriously awkward interview with Krishnan Guru-Murthy. As funny as the pod is, you are able to learn a lot, too from Buxtons honest discussions of sorrow when his dad died to how upsetting Sara Pascoe finds it when people make clicky sticky noises with their mouths.
Other lessons from this podcast Louis Theroux does a fine rendition of Yes Sir, I Can Boogie. Ellie Violet Bramley