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20 July 2005

Campos e Cunha resigns

Governo: Sócrates propõe a Sampaio exoneração do ministro das Finanças

Lisboa, 20 Jul (Lusa) - O primeiro-ministro solicitou hoje ao Presidente da República a exoneração do ministro de Estado e das Finanças, Campos e Cunha, a pedido deste, por motivos pessoais, familiares e cansaço, disse à Agência Lusa fonte oficial. De acordo com a mesma fonte, o primeiro-ministro, José Sócrates, "no mesmo momento", propôs ao Presidente da República, Jorge Sampaio, a nomeação de Fernando Teixeira dos Santos como ministro de Estado e das Finanças".

Fernando Teixeira dos Santos presida actualmente à Comissão de Mercados e Valores Mobiliários (CMVM), foi secretário de Estado dos governos socialistas de António Guterres e é professor universitário.


(Translated Version)
Prime Minister Sócrates asks State President Sampaio accept the resignation of the minister of the Finances

The Prime Minister, today requested that the President of the Republic accept the resignation of the minister of the Finances, Campos e Cunha, for reasons of a personal nature, family and fatigue, according to an official source. This same source also added that the Prime Minister, Jose Sócrates, "at the same time" proposed the nomination of Fernando Teixeira Dos Santos as minister of Finances to the President of the Republic, Jorge Sampaio.

Fernando Teixeira Dos Santos currently presides over the bourse authority(CMVM). He was the secretary of State in the socialist governments of António Guterres and is also a university professor.

Fernando Teixeira dos Santos is the next Minister of Finances

Is it time to open the wallet? Is the Socialist Goverment worried it's going to lose the next municipal elections?

Portugal to have a new Minister of Finances

Seems like the strain of having to take unpopular measures and a growing divide between the Minister of Finances Campos e Cunha and the Prime Minister Socrates have led to the resignation of the Minister of Finances. Seems like the game of musical chairs hasn't ended yet. How long will we continue to be governed by inept politicians?

18 July 2005

Terrorist's "Get out of Jail Free" card.

Germany Frees Terror Suspect From Prison

An al-Qaida suspect was freed Monday after the country's high court blocked his extradition to Spain, ruling that a European Union-wide arrest warrant - heralded as a key step in the fight against terrorism - does not yet comply with German law. The ruling comes as European governments are scrambling to enact legislation following the deadly bombings in London. It also deals a blow to the EU's post-Sept. 11 counterterrorism plans and highlights the difficulties Europe faces in rushing through anti-terror laws frowned upon by the courts and at times angrily contested by civil libertarians. The Karlsruhe-based Federal Constitutional Court released Mamoun Darkazanli, who has German and Syrian citizenship, after deciding that Germany's version of the European arrest warrant introduced last August violates the country's constitution and a suspect's basic rights.

Darkazanli is among 41 suspects, including Osama bin Laden, indicted by Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzon, who has been investigating the al-Qaida terror network. He faces up to 12 years in a Spanish prison if convicted of membership in a terrorist organization. Darkazanli, 46, appears in a 1999 wedding video with two of the three Sept. 11, 2001 suicide pilots - Marwan al-Shehhi and Ziad Jarrah - who lived and studied in Hamburg along with lead hijacker Mohamed Atta. The United States has labeled Darkazanli's Hamburg-based trading company a front for terrorism. He appeared on U.S. suspect lists after Sept. 11, but has denied any links to bin Laden or the attacks. Specifically, the German court said the country's legislature failed to provide a mechanism for appeal when making the EU legislation national law, and also had not gone far enough in considering suspects' fundamental rights.

(Guardian Unlimited)

This is how you win the war on terrorism...

Portugal and Iran explore trade ties.

Iran, Portugal stress investments, Trade ties

Head of Iran Chamber of Commerce Industries and Mines (ICCIM) and Advisor to Portuguese Commerce Minister Skopiro explored expansion of industrial and trade ties in Lisbon, according to IRNA. Ali Naghi Khamoushi said that 75% of Iran's trade ties with European nations. "Portugal is absent in this, but today's signing of agreement for a joint Iran-Portugal Trade Council grounds are paved to boost trade exchange." He referred to the suitable geographical location of Iran which has access to the Middle East and Central Asian markets with a population of over 400 mln people. He also called for signing agreements on removing double taxatioan on trade and finance, promotion and support of joint investments and trade, and reducing customs tariffs, as well as cooperation in banking and shipping. The Portuguese official said that Lisbon is keen on exploring new markets for joint investments and trade and supports the proposed joint trade council. He added that Portuguese investors have welcomed closer relations with their Iranian counterparts and are interested in greater presence in Middle East and Central Asia region. The Iranian delegation also visited 'Porto' the second industrialized city in the country and met with several local official industrialists and traders.


Portugal wins Rugby Sevens Final.

Portugal retain Euro sevens crown

Portugal defeated Russia 28-26 in a pulsating climax to the Grand Final of the 2005 FIRA European Sevens in Moscow to retain the trophy they have won for the last three years. Spain won the Plate with a 25-14 win over Germany, whilst Lithuania claimed the Bowl. Portugal topped their group on day one, recording four victories and a 7-7 draw, against Italy. In Pool B, Russia delighted the home fans with five wins out of five, including a 33-7 victory over France. They followed that up on day two by defeating Italy 17-0 in the Cup semi finals, whilst Portugal beat France 22-7


Well done Lads. Pity that the local media aren't giving this the atention it deserves.

17 July 2005

Gravity doughnut promises time machine

Time present and time past

This is where Amos Ori from Technion, the Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, comes in. He says that according to Einstein's theories, space can be twisted enough to create a local gravity field that looks like a doughnut of some arbitrary size. The gravitational field lines circle around the outside of this doughnut, so that space and time are both tightly curved back on themselves. Crucially, this does away with the need for any hypothetical exotic matter.

Although it is difficult to describe what this would look or be like in real life, Ori says the mathematics reveal that every period of time between when the doughnut was created and the present moment would be somewhere in the vacuum inside the doughnut. All you need to do is work out how to get there.In theory, it should be possible to travel back to any point in time after the time machine was built, reports Ori in Physical Review Letters. One slight snag is that he has not worked out how to generate the gravitational doughnut, although he has some ideas. "It's wild speculation, but you may need to move large masses rapidly in a circular motion," Ori says.

One step closer to opening Pandora's box.

Table-top Fusion?

Is bubble fusion back?

Physicists at Purdue University in Indiana claim to have found new evidence for nuclear fusion in a tabletop device. Yiban Xu and Adam Butt say that firing sound waves into a beaker of deuterated acetone that has been "seeded" with neutrons produces tritium and further neutrons through the process of fusion. Known as "bubble fusion", the phenomenon met with widespread scepticism when it was first reported in 2002. The new results are likely to be just as controversial.

Yiban Xu and Adam ButtSonoluminescence describes the process whereby bubbles in a liquid emit tiny flashes of light when they are forced to expand and collapse by sound waves. Some physicists believe that the pressures and temperatures inside the collapsing bubbles could be high enough to initiate nuclear reactions. If achieved, such fusion could lead to a new clean energy source.

I need one of these toys...

It´s all in the genes...

Scientists Find 'Hangover Gene'
This mutation is no party, Japanese team say

Many hangover sufferers looking for someone or something to blame can now point the finger at their own genes, according to a new study. Mutations in a specific gene inactivate a key enzyme and slow the elimination of acetaldehyde -- the first product of alcohol metabolism -- from the body, say Japanese researchers reporting in the July issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

Their study of 326 Japanese female and male workers found that those with a mutated, inactive form of aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) -- an enzyme that plays an important role in the elimination of alcohol-induced acetaldehyde -- are more susceptible to hangovers and facial flushing when they drink. This mutated form of ALDH is called ALDH2. People with the inactive form of ALDH2 needed to drink "significantly less" than those with active ALDH2 to trigger hangover, study corresponding author Masako Yokoyama, of the Mitsukoshi Health and Welfare Foundation, said in a prepared statement.
(HealthDay News)

When can we expect the anti-hangover pill?