Pamphlet… “Death Penalty for Homosexuals is Prescribed in the Bible” by Peter J. Peters…
Book by C.A. Weisman “Who Is Esau-Edom”
1 MW E-Cat Cold Fusion Device Test Successful
On October 28, 2011, Andrea Rossi demonstrated his 1 megawatt E-Cat system to his first customer, who had engineers/scientists on hand to test/validate its performance. Due to a glitch, it provided 479 kW of continuous power for 5.5 hours during the self-sustained mode.
Here I am with Andrea Ross after the test of the 1 MW E-Cat plant in the background.
I am seeking a business relationship with Andrea Rossi.
My trip was sponsored by Farlie Paynter of Canada, as well as by Mike Spitzauer, CEO of Green Power Inc (GPI), the Waste-to-Diesel Fuel company in Pasco, Washington.
By Sterling D. Allan (who was present), with Hank Mills
Pure Energy Systems News
Well, the big day has come and gone. Andrea Rossi’s one-megawatt-capable E-Cat cold fusion device has been tested in Bologna, Italy; and the unknown customer, who ran the test, is apparently happy.
There were some issues, so it couldn’t be run at full power in self-looped mode, but what it did do was plenty impressive.
It ran for 5.5 hours producing 479 kW, while in self-looped mode. That means no substantial external energy was required to make it run, because it kept itself running, even while producing an excess of nearly half a megawatt. Rossi explained the reasons for this in the presentation he gave, which I videotaped and will be posting later.
That’s half the rated capacity, but it is still a major accomplishment for the device that was completed earlier this week — the first of its kind on the planet.
Early in the day with a glitch showing up, Rossi said that they had to make a decision about whether to go for 1 MW output, not in self-sustain mode, or with self-sustain mode at a lower power level. The customer opted to go for the self-sustain mode. Nothing was said about the prospects of a follow-up test, though I would imagine that the customer will be running many tests to understand this gadget they have purchased, and that information will be conveyed to Rossi.
When I asked him during the Q&A session if the customer was satisfied with the test, Rossi responded, “Yes, I think they are satisfied.”
Here is a brief video excerpt highlight from Rossi during his 1-hour reading of the public report from the customer, followed by a question and answer session. I recorded the entire presentation, and we’ll post that tomorrow, hopefully along with a transcription. Half the time was in Italian, as he would address each item in Italian as well as English.
In this excerpt, Rossi responds to the question, “So, is this a breakthrough?”
Here’s a transcription of the excerpt video:
Mister [Paolo] Soglia has asked me if I think that the test of today is a breakthrough. I think yes, because I think today we have seen enough. No more small five or ten kilowatt units, but now we have overcame the difficulties connected with the basic engineering to make something that…. You know, to go in self sustain mode and make 400 [actually 479] kilowatt hours per hour… To understand that this is a breakthrough…
You can also think that hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to try to have a COP [coefficient of performance] of 1.1 with nuclear fusion. Today we have made a theoretically endless COP making 470 kilowatt hour per hour of completely free energy, free of fuel. Yes, I think this is a breakthrough.
Of course this is the first step, but it is a very important first step….
Early this year Andrea Rossi announced his plans to construct and test the world’s first one megawatt cold fusion plant. The plant would utilize his E-Cat (Energy Catalyzer) technology that utilizes tiny quantities of nickel powder and hydrogen gas as fuel, while producing large amounts of energy in the form of heat. Importantly, the energy is produced without emitting any pollution, utilizing any radioactive materials, or producing any nuclear waste. Simply put, the E-Cat offers the world a source of cheap, safe, and clean energy. Although the exact plans for the launch of the technology were adjusted a few times throughout the course of this year, October 28th, 2011 was settled on for the date of the official test of the one megawatt plant by the first customer.
These first plants will cost around $2,000 per kilowatt to build one at a time, but once they are mass produced, Rossi expects the price to drop to around $100 per kilowatt installed.
Attendance at this test was limited for several reasons. First, the customer does not wish to be known at this time, nor to have its test engineers/scientists identified. I did not inadvertently discover the customer’s identify, nor did I try to find out. I gave that group their space and did not probe. Second, the device is a nuclear device, and the regulations for a public demonstration are extremely stringent; so by making the event private, and only bringing one or two at a time to see it was a way to get around the safety requirements.
Most of us (around 30 guests total) arrived between 9 and 10 am; and by around 11 am, Rossi began taking people back to see the device while it was in operation, in self-sustained mode. Here’s a video I shot, with Rossi’s permission, during my 2-3 minute chance to see the unit during operation:
A neighboring facility, coincidentally, is named “Rossi”, which is a common name in Italy.
Here I am with Mats Lewan and other Swedish associates.
Here I am with Peter Svensson from the AP
Professor Levi, who was Rossi’s right-hand man today, will be heading the Bologna research on the E-Cat.
Power for start-up (resistive coils that provided heat to the reaction chambers) was provided by the large and loud genset (was making all the noise) you see that is nearly as large as the small shipping container in which the 1 MW E-Cat plant was arranged. Once the reaction chambers got up to temperature, they were maintained by the heat produced by the reaction. I’m not sure why they kept the generator running after that, but I would guess it was for back-up or safety. I’m sure the engineers testing the system made sure what the power levels were at all times.
There were 100 E-Cat modules, each with 3 reaction chambers in them, for a total of 300 reaction chambers. An additional 20 or so units had been installed on the top of the shipping container, compared to the earlier photos and videos we had seen. Steam was produced by the units and exited through the back in the bottom of the two pipes. The steam was not put to use to run a load but the heat was dumped via two radiators, distilled, and circulated back into the system. When looking inside the plant, I noticed that one of the E-Cat units had a little steam escaping from the front of it.
The top pipe in the back, which was closed, was for emergency cool-down, if needed.
Each unit was run independently through a computerized control. The input and output temperature readings were recorded by computer, and the data will be provided to us probably later this evening or tomorrow morning. When I went by there, I think the input was measuring 19 C, and the output was 109 C.
Radiation measurements were taken by Dr. Bianchini David, from the University of Bologna. He said no extraneous radiation was detected at any time emanating from the reaction chambers, or from the piping, or from the water tanks, or in the vicinity of the apparatus. Apparently, gamma radiation is produced during the reaction, which is shielded by water, iron, lead, and a final coating on the apparatus. David said that he has not measured gamma radiation from the device, because he has not had access to the reaction chamber while it has been unshielded.
None of the units were taken apart following this test, as was the one back on the October 6 test. I asked Rossi whether any radio frequencies were used in the test, and he said “no”.
I would estimate that there were about 12 people assisting with the test arrangement, including: 3-4 security guards, 1 caterer, 2 receptionists who checked to make sure everyone was invited and wore the required badges, 3-4 engineers helping take measurements, Foccardi was helping take guests 1-2 at a time back to see the unit.
I especially enjoyed mingling with the other guests, including: Mats Lewan from NyTeknik; Irene Zreick from Focus.it; Peter Svensson, Technology Writer for the Associated Press, NY, who told me that the reason the mainstream press hasn’t been covering this is because Rossi has been very picky about who he lets in; Enrico Billi, a nuclear physicist and friend of Rossi’s, who is presently living in China and helping to open doors there for this technology; Professor Christos Stremmenos, from the University of Bologna, who told me all about his theory of how the technology works; Pierre Clauzon, nuclear engineering professor from France, who told me about several theoretical physicists trying to understand cold fusion in general and the E-Cat in particular; Uzikova Irina, a nuclear plant designer from Russia; Stefan Heglesson, representing a Swedish interest in the technology; Loris Ferrari, Associate Professor of Condensed Matter Physics from the University of Bologna, who will be one of the five professors to do the two year test of the E-Cat, which hopefully will be funded as a result of today’s test. They will study both the “how” and the “why” of the technology.
Mats and I agreed to post our stories at the same time. Peter was going to go first, having been given an exclusive by Rossi, but it’s going to be a few days before he gets the necessary info and editorial approvals before he’s able to run a story in the Associated Press.
Probably the biggest opening for skeptics will be the continually running genset that is probably rated for 500 kW (my guess), and appears to have been connected by cables to the E-Cat. “Where’s the mystery?” So knock yourselves out, skeptics. It’s the customer who has to be happy, and apparently this one was satisfied that those cables were not contributing to the 470 kW output during self-sustaining mode.
Here’s a video where Rossi talks to us briefly following the test, saying that a report will come shortly; and giving us the reason for why we couldn’t go back during the test except 1-2 at a time.
And here’s a video of a couple of 1 MW generators that were in the room where we were hanging out, which were from an earlier project Rossi was involved with, running on biofuel.
# # #
This story is also published at BeforeItsNews.
Update… Alleged history of suppression of cold fusion…
The History of MIT’s Blatant Suppression of Cold Fusion
A stunning report written by the late Eugene Mallove details the efforts of professors, researchers, and even the former President of MIT to squash cold fusion at all costs. If you have any doubt that Pons and Fleischmann had enemies desperately trying to discredit them, this article will erase it!
By Hank Mills with Sterling D. Allan Pure Energy Systems News December 27, 2011
Due to the fact that commercially-ready cold fusion technologies like Andrea Rossi’s E-Cat (Energy Catalyzer) exist and can produce kilowatts of power, I’m not too interested in previous systems from years ago that could only produce a couple watts of power (or less). However, I am very interested in the events that took place immediately after the birth of Cold Fusion in 1989, when Pons and Fleischmann announced the existence of their technology to the world. Although cold fusion systems at the time were not ready for the market place, they proved the effect was real — a fact the establishment could not allow the public to accept.
Immediately after the announcement was made, the “mainstream” scientific community went on the attack. The late Eugene Mallove was in the middle of it, being employed at MIT in the news office — before resigning in protest of the institution’s misconduct. In a featured article for Infinite Energy Magazine, Mallove detailed exactly what took place that led to his resignation, and the depth of hatred that many professors at MIT had for Pons and Fleischmann’s work. The article titled, “MIT and Cold Fusion: A Special Report” also looks at how the replication performed by the institution’s Plasma Fusion Center actually did produce positive results, how data from the experiment was altered by unknown individuals at least twice, and how the hot fusion scientists in charge of such tests were far too biased to conduct proper research.
The article is the most detailed piece of documentation I have ever seen in regards to the early years of the war against cold fusion. If you think the suppression Pons and Fleischmann faced was bad, you don’t have a clue until you have read this article.
To start with, those in charge of the replication attempt were members of the MIT Plasma Fusion Center. Their work with hot fusion Tokamak brought the university many millions of dollars in funding from the government, and maintained their job security. If cold fusion were to be accepted as a real phenomenon, it could have made hot fusion research appear to be near worthless.
The question in the minds of representatives in Washington, DC would have been, “Why should the taxpayers finance the construction of giant reactors to experiment with hot fusion reactions that produce nuclear waste and lethal amounts of radioactivity, when cold fusion research only requires a small fraction of the funding, while producing no waste and little radioactivity?”
In the minds of the MIT professors, such as MIT Plasma Fusion Center Director Ronald R. Parker, that question could never be allowed to cross the minds of those that paid for their employment. So in an effort to belittle cold fusion research so no one would take it serious, the members of his department (including some scientists from others) took every opportunity they could to attack Pons and Fleischmann. For example, consider how…
A funeral party or “Wake for Cold Fusion” was held by the Plasma Fusion Center, before their replication test of Pons and Fleischmann’s setup was even complete. They held another such party afterwards.
Mugs belittling cold fusion were given out by Ron Parker, the head of the MIT hot fusion research group, who was supposed to be doing serious research to determine if cold fusion was a reality or not. The mugs read, “The Utah University: Department of Fusion Confusion” and had mocking instructions for cold fusion on the back.
Ron Parker would use the test results to discredit cold fusion, while at a celebration of the death of cold fusion stated to Eugene Mallove (after being shown evidence in support for cold fusion) stated that the data from the MIT replication was “worthless.”
How examination of the data from MIT’s replication showed obvious evidence of tampering. In fact, the corrected data showed excess heat. Yet it was still used to discredit cold fusion research for many years.
How the former President of MIT, Charles Vest, refused to order an investigation into how the Plasma Fusion Center handled the replication, and their obviously unscientific behavior — such as partying for the death of something instead of doing unbiased research. Even worse, years later he signed onto a Department of Energy report stating that cold fusion did not deserve funding for research, yet hot fusion deserved millions of additional dollars and was a “bargain.”
Conflicts of interest were ignored from the very start. For example, those who had the strongest need for cold fusion to be proven not to work (hot fusion scientists), were tasked with the replication of the effect. It would be like giving a cigarette company the order to conduct a study on the reality of lung cancer, or the lumber industry the job of determining the usefulness of industrial hemp. What the hot fusion scientists were going to say was obvious!
How some scientists were so closed minded they stated that if cold fusion was real, Pons and Fleischmann should be dead from radiation poisoning. In addition, some scientists went so far as to personally attack them. In one case, a scientist stated that even if a thousand tests showed excess heat, that the results would not vindicate Pons and Fleischmann.
“Words to Eat”
MIT Professor Ronald George Ballinger may hold the all time record for making a foolish statement against cold fusion. He wrote in 1991:
“It would not matter to me if a thousand other investigations were to subsequently perform experiments that see excess heat. These results may all be correct, but it would be an insult to these investigators to connect them with Pons and Fleischmann.”
Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of the article is how Ronald R. Parker and Ronald G. Ballinger had a phone call with Nick Tate of the Boston Herald in 1989. They were talking to him about a potential story about cold fusion, hoping that he would write a hit piece. In their conversation, which is transcribed in the article, Parker uses the fraud word in his description of their work. He also talks about how he is setting up another “blast” against cold fusion with Bob Bazell, a reporter with NBC.
When Tate reported in the Boston Herald on May 1 that the MIT scientists had called Pons and Fleishmann’s work a “possible fraud” and “scientific schlock”, Pons and Fleishmann were viciously attacked at the meeting of the American Physical Society. In a retrospective piece written in 1991, Tate asserted that: “Some say those comments set the tone for the national criticism of the Utah work that followed.”
Meanwhile, when Tate’s article in the Boston Herald revealed that Parker had described Pons and Fleishmann’s work as being a “possible fraud” and “scientific schlock”, Parker rushed to deny he had made such statements. Probably, he realized that in his rush to discredit cold fusion he had crossed the line, and committed slander. In order to avoid possible legal repercussions, in a media advisory from the MIT News Office, Parker specifically denied making such assertions to Tate during their telephone conversation. However, Tate had recorded the phone call, and therefore had rock solid evidence that Parker had made those statements. Years later, Tate allowed Eugene Mallove to listen to the recording, which revealed the truth about what was said. It was too late, the damage to cold fusion’s reputation was done.
In summary, Mallove’s article paints a damning picture of MIT scientists and professors hell-bent on discrediting cold fusion. Out of desperation to protect hot fusion research, they went so far as to tell blatant lies, alter data, hurl personal insults, conduct celebrations of the “death” of cold fusion, and organize journalists to write hit pieces to try and dismiss Pons and Fleischmann’s work in the public eye. Then the leadership of MIT turned away and ignored the misconduct and potentially criminal behavior, even when they were specifically alerted to it. Years later, these same individuals (working in other positions with the DOE and DOD) continued to promote the idea that cold fusion was “garbage.”
If you want to know the TRUTH about why it has taken twenty plus years for a commercial cold fusion technology to be developed, you should read this article. It is a tragedy beyond measure that an institution like MIT would allow such inappropriate behavior. Everyone involved has blood on their hands from all the people on this planet that have died due to the suppression of this technology. Literally, due to their suppression of cold fusion, children have needlessly starved, millions have suffered dehydration due to a lack of clean water, the environment has been trashed, and the global economy has been almost destroyed.
If the suppression of cold fusion by MIT had never happened, we might not even have an energy crisis today!
And this is but one of many such stories about the suppression saga from 1989.
The suppression from back then has had phenomenal staying power due to the brainwashing that pronounced “cold fusion” to be “junk science,” no matter what, despite thousands of replications worldwide, with several making significant gains toward marketplace viability, and the E-Cat actually reaching the marketplace on October 28 of this year with a 1 MW unit. So now, when people attack Andrea Rossi’s E-Cat, it’s hard to tell whether they are acting as a function of that brainwashing, or as a present-day disinformation agent, or if they have honest misgivings of a scientific basis.
Gratefully, Rossi keeps moving forward despite these negative statements.
A few individuals in the mainstream are coming around and waking up to the reality of cold fusion, like NASA’s Dennis Bushnell who claims cold fusion is the number one most promising alternative energy technology on the planet. However, to protect hot fusion research, protect the status quo, and to keep the public from realizing how the scientific community suppressed cold fusion, he calls the phenomena LENR (Low Energy Nuclear Reactions). In addition, he claims there is no fusion in cold fusion, in order to try and make the technology seem more mundane, and more acceptable.
There were enemies of mankind in 1989 that wanted to prevent the proliferation of cold fusion, and there are still such enemies today. Reading about how cold fusion research was attacked from the very start can help us prepare for attacks from these in the future.
We cannot let greedy, selfish, and power-hungry monsters and their countless minions suppress cold fusion for another twenty years or more. There are too many lives at risk. Simply put, the future of our civilization is at stake.
These are grumblers, malcontents, following their own sinful desires; they are loud-mouthed boasters, showing favoritism to gain advantage…
Wind Turbine Explodes Into Flames
By Nic Halverson December 11, 2011
Nothing is more emblematic of clean, renewable energy than the soothing blades of a wind turbine placidly turning in the breeze. Whenever I encounter a wind farm, I’m instantly calmed, dare I say hypnotized, by the tranquility.
So when one of these gentle green giants catches fire, like it did in the above photo, the image is jarring to say the least. Most jarring is that this seems to happen more than you might think.
Most recently this happened in Androssan, North Ayrshire, Scotland, an area recently hammered by winds up to 160 mph, compliments of a beastly Atlantic storm that clobbered northern parts of the U.K. early this week.
As you can see from this photo, the turbine exploded, spewing large pieces of flaming material on the ground below.
The windfarm’s operator, Infinis of Edinburgh, said the cause of the fire is not yet known and that the incident is under investigation.
It’s not entirely clear what went wrong (normally wind turbines shut down when winds reach 55 mile per hour), so the investigation will likely focus on that mechanism and possibly the gearbox, which controls rotor speed.
“As a standard precautionary measure, all Infinis staff vacate wind farms when wind speeds exceed 55 mph and therefore no one was present on site at the time of the incident,” Infinis explained in a press release.
As well, the site has been disconnected from the electricity grid until further notice.
Better design??? wind generator without the gearbox…
Italy’s borrowing rates fall for 2nd day running
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Italy saw its borrowing rates fall for the second day running as it raised around euro7 billion ($9.2 billion) in a range of auctions Thursday, a further sign that concerns over a default have eased a bit over the past month.
The Bank of Italy said Italy raised euro2.5 billion ($3.3 billion) of ten-year bonds at an average yield of 6.98 percent. That’s lower than the 7.56 percent it had to pay at an equivalent auction last month, when investor concerns over the ability of the country to service its massive debts became particularly acute and effectively prompted a change in government.
However, the country’s borrowing rate on the key 10-year bond remains uncomfortably close to the 7 percent level widely considered to be unsustainable in the long run. Greece, Ireland and Portugal all had to request financial bailouts after their 10-year bond yields pushed above 7 percent.
In the secondary markets, it continues to hover around the 7 percent mark.
Markets had grown fearful over the past few months that Italy will find it difficult to pay off its massive debts, which stand at around euro1.9 trillion ($2.5 trillion). Next year alone, Italy has some euro330 billion ($431 billion) of debt to refinance.
Italy, which is the eurozone’s third-largest economy, also sold euro2.54 billion of 3 year bonds at an average interest rate of 5.62 percent, far lower than the 7.89 percent rate it had to pay last month. It also raised euro803 million in the 7-year auction at a rate of 7.42 percent and euro1.18 billion in nine-year bonds at a yield of 6.7 percent.
Thursday’s results come a day after Italy raised euro10.7 billion in a pair of auctions, again at sharply lower rates than those it was forced to pay just a month ago.
The sharp decline in Italy’s borrowing costs over the past couple of days suggests that commercial banks from the 17 countries that use the euro may have diverted some money they tapped from emergency loans from the European Central Bank last week to buy the bonds of heavily indebted governments.
It may also suggest rising investor confidence in Italy’s recent efforts to reduce its long-term debt through a variety of austerity measures.
Mario Monti, Italy’s new premier, is holding a press conference Thursday and the state of the economy is likely to feature large.
Monti’s technocratic government got parliamentary approval last week for more spending cuts and tax increases intended to save the country from financial disaster. One of the most controversial aspects of the austerity package is reform of Italy’s bloated pension system.
By DAVID McHUGH Dec 29, 8:15 AM (ET)
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) – After a turbulent 2011, the 17 countries that use the euro will be quickly confronted in the new year with major hurdles to solving their government debt crisis, just as the eurozone economy is expected to sink back into recession.
With government finances under pressure as growth wanes, the eurozone will find it even more difficult to shore up shaky banks and reduce the high borrowing costs that threaten Italy and Spain with financial ruin.
As early as the second full week of January, bond auctions in which Italy and Spain need to borrow big chunks of cash will start showing whether the eurozone is finally getting a grip on the 2-year-old crisis that has seen Greece, Ireland and Portugal bailed out.
If the auctions go well and borrowing costs ease, the crisis will ease, lending support for the EU strategy of getting governments to embark on often-savage austerity measures to reduce deficits, along with massive support for the banking system from the European Central Bank.
High rates, on the other hand, would feed fears of a government debt default that could cripple banks, sink the economy and, in the extreme case, destroy the 17-member currency union.
Key events early in the New Year:
– Italy and Spain will seek to borrow heavily in the first quarter at affordable interest costs, starting the second week in January.
– The slowing eurozone economy may slip into or already be in recession, lowering tax revenue and increasing government budget deficits.
– Bailed-out Greece must agree with creditors on a debt writedown that will cut the value of their holdings by 50 percent in an effort to start putting the bankrupt country back on its feet.
The task is for the major players – eurozone governments, the European Union’s executive Commission and the European Central Bank – to convince financial markets that troubled governments can pay their heavy debts and therefore deserve to borrow at affordable interest costs.
Default fears have driven up bond market interest rates and made it more and more expensive for indebted governments to borrow to pay off maturing bonds. That vicious cycle forced Greece, Ireland and Portugal to seek bailout loans from the other eurozone governments and the International Monetary Fund.
A key stress point will be whether Italy can continue to raise money in the markets at affordable rates.
In the first quarter, it has to step up its borrowing to pay off euro72 billion ($94 billion) in bond redemptions and interest payments. Spain, which is expected to sell up to euro25 billion ($33 billion) in new debt, starts a heavy period of auctions on Jan. 12, and Italy begins on Jan. 13.
Overall, Italy has more than euro300 billion ($392 billion) in debt maturing in 2012.
“If Italy manages to auction this debt successfully, then the debt crisis will take a step back from the cliff edge,” said analyst Jane Foley at Rabobank. “If it doesn’t, it could go over the cliff edge. At the end of the day, whatever the nuances and hours of discussion that have gone on about the sovereign debt crisis, it boils down to whether a sovereign can sell its debt in the open market.”
If Italy fails to borrow at affordable rates, the options are few and unattractive. The eurozone’s euro500 billion ($653 billion) in bailout funds – already partly committed to earlier bailouts – would struggle to cover Italy’s financing needs, even if additional help can be found from the IMF. A bigger solution – commonly guaranteed eurobonds – faces German resistance and would take time to implement.
The European Central Bank could use its power to buy large amounts of Italian and Spanish bonds with newly created money – but has so far refused, out of concern that a central bank bailout would remove the incentive for governments to control their spending.
Instead, the bank has focused on pushing credit to banks so they can keep lending to support the economy.
Still, its limited bond purchases have provided essential support to Spain and Italy by helping hold down borrowing costs. And its latest massive infusion of euro489 billion ($639 billion) in cheap, long term loans may help troubled governments borrow, as stronger banks may use some of the money to buy higher-yielding government bonds.
Italy pays an average of about 4.2 percent on its existing stock of euro1.9 trillion in debt, but the crisis has pushed bond yields on the country’s benchmark ten-year bonds to over 7 percent.
Italy’s new government, led by economist Mario Monti, can probably pay rates that high for a while, analysts think. Italy paid much higher interest rates in the 1990s for several years; rates peaked at 14 percent in 1992 but fell gradually to around 4 percent by 1998 as the country shaped up its finances to join the euro at the beginning of 1999.
Italy and Spain’s battle will be even harder if the debt troubles pull the whole eurozone into a recession. Economists at Ernst & Young foresee a mild recession in the first part of the year and only 0.1 percent growth for the year as a whole, with unemployment at 10 percent for several years.
That will make it harder for governments to persuade voters to accept more cutbacks in spending, pensions and government wages while raising taxes.
It’s not clear how long voters in Greece, which will have its fourth straight year of recession next year, will tolerate continuous austerity. Yet the cutbacks are the price of getting the bailout loans that have kept Greece from default.
Meanwhile Greece is striving to get creditors to agree to write down some debt and avoid larger losses in case of a default that is not agreed ahead of time. A euro14.4 billion ($18.8 billion) chunk of debt comes due in March.
Guntram Wolff, deputy director of the Bruegel think tank in Brussels, said that governments may get past the early hurdles – only to confront a souring mood among voters in the second half of the year over continuing cutbacks and sacrifices. New governments in Spain and Italy, currently enjoying political honeymoons, will be pressed to show progress. Greece, with a transitional government and elections expected in April, has seen repeated protests and strikes.
“There will be a point in the summer when people have seen a lot of action from government and no improvement in their living conditions and they will ask, do we have this euro to live with austerity and high unemployment,” he said.
Wolff thinks that the determination of political elites to keep the euro together will win out: “I think it’s going to survive.”
In the mean time, when the many thousands of the multitude were gathered together, insomuch that they trod one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, WHICH IS HYPOCRISY…
FDA draws criticism after U-turn on antibiotics in animal feed
Environmental groups dismayed after agency drops long-held plan to regulate use of human antibiotics fed to healthy animals
By Karen McVeigh guardian.co.uk, Thursday 29 December 2011 11.39 EST
Environmental and consumer groups have condemned the US Food and Drug Administration’s move to renege on its long-held policy to regulate the use of human antibiotics in animal feed.
Last week, the agency quietly announced it was withdrawing its plan to limit the use of antibiotics fed to healthy livestock intended for human consumption.
Critics say the U-turn, which comes amid the FDA’s own stated concerns over food safety, is at odds with its obligations to protect the public.
The groups also criticised the timing of the announcement, which was made during the holiday season and disclosed only in the federal register.
The use of low doses of antibiotics in agricultural animal feed contributes to drug-resistant superbugs, according to food and health experts.
One leading food policy writer described the policy reversal as “pathetic” and “dismaying.”
“It’s dismaying, and obviously something they felt sheepish about, otherwise it wouldn’t have been released this week,” Michael Pollan, author of the Onmivore’s Dilemma and Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual, told the Guardian.
“When Margaret Hamburg became the head of the FDA, she indicated this was a high priority for them and that she realised how much of a problem the profligate use of antibiotics was. She said she was going to treat this issue as if her hair was on fire. This isn’t the way someone acts when their hair is on fire.”
Pollan said there was “no question” that meat could be produced without human antibiotics, as the EU has already banned them.
The FDA first acknowledged in 1977 that the overuse of antibiotics in healthy livestock for growth promotion and disease prevention was unsafe and could promote antibiotic resistant bacteria that could infect people. An advisory committee at the time recommended that the FDA immediately withdraw approval for two drugs, penicillin and tetracycline, for subtherapeutic uses of the drugs in livestock.
Last week, in a statement in the Federal Register, the FDA says it plans instead to allow the industry to self-regulate and “focus its efforts for now on the potential for voluntary reform and the promotion of the judicious use of antimicrobials in the interest of public health”.
The problem, said Pollan, boils down to a lack of political will in the face of powerful industry interests. “There’s a lot of corporate money in politics these days,” he said. “Here you’re going up against not just one powerful industry, but two. This administration has had enough trouble going after individual powerful industries. That they would prevail against two of them joined together was too much to hope for.”
Livestock consume about 80% of the antibiotics sold in the US.
The FDA’s decision comes after a number of high profile meat recalls. In August, 36m lbs of turkey meat were found to have been contaminated with drug-resistant salmonella that caused one death and 76 people to become ill.
When approached by the Guardian, a spokesman for the FDA could not provide anyone for comment.
A statement, taken from the Federal Register, said: “FDA continues to view antimicrobial resistance as a significant public health issue. Today’s action should not be interpreted as a sign that FDA no longer has safety concerns about the use of medically important antibiotics in food-producing animals, or that FDA will not consider re-proposing withdrawal proceedings in the future if necessary.”
But Avinash Kar, an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), described the move as a “step backwards” for the FDA.
Kar believes the move is an attempt to get around a lawsuit filed by the NRDC to force the FDA to withdraw approval for the practice of mixing human antibiotics into animal feed. The lawsuit, filed in May, asked the court to declare that the FDA had violated federal law by failing to withdraw approval of using penicillin and tetracycline in animal feed when animal health is not at stake.
“This action by the FDA is a response to our lawsuit” said Kar. “The findings in 1977 were included in the notice for opportunity for a hearing, and they think they can get around the lawsuit by withdrawing the notices for opportinuties for a hearing. But we will not allow the FDA to ignore public health.”
In response to the FDA’s reliance on voluntary regulations, Kar said: “We don’t believe that the industry will voluntarily regulate itself, because for the last 33 years the approach has been voluntary and the use of antibiotics in livestock has not gone down but – based on estimates – has gone up.”
“The science has only gotten stronger.”
Stephen Roach, of the Food Animals Concern Trust, a group also involved in the lawsuit against the FDA, said he believed the FDA was putting public health at risk.
“It is totally at odds with their mission to protect the public. This month we had a salmonella outbreak in the north-east that was resistant to penicillin and the drug that replaced penicillin, cephalosporin. We are going to continue to have multi-drug resistant salmonella outbreaks and E.coli drug-resistant outbreaks.”
Roach said the use of low doses of antibiotics in animals over a long period of time created the ideal conditions for bacteria to develop drug resistance.
A growing number of scientific and medical institutions have urged action on antibiotic resistance. The World Health Organisation devoted a WHO day to microbial resistance.
In September, several institutions, including the American Medical Association, the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society, wrote a letter to Congress, calling for them to to reiterate the link between antibiotic resistance and the overuse of antibiotics in food animals. Some of the same health groups took ads out in Politico and The Hill.
“Hundreds of scientific studies conducted over four decades have shown that feeding low doses of antibiotics to healthy food animals leads to drug-resistant infections in people,” they wrote in the ad. “In fact, America’s leading medical, scientific and public health organizations have been warning of the danger for years.”
Politicians also expressed dismay at the FDA’s move.
In a statement on her website, Democratic congresswoman Louise Slaughter, the author of the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act (Pamta), a legislative framework aimed at tackling antibiotic resistance, said: “Every year, 100,000 Americans die from bacterial infections acquired in the hospital and this is just the tip of the iceberg. Seventy percent of these infections are resistant to drugs commonly used to treat them. I wonder how many lives could have been saved if these proposals were adopted in 1977 as they should have been.
“We need to get our head out of the sand and start taking public health advice from scientists rather than industry lobbyists.”
Integrity guides decent people, but hypocrisy leads treacherous people to ruin…