Cal physicists make a radio 10,000 times thinner than a human hair

Physicists at UC Berkeley say they have produced the world’s smallest radio out of a single carbon nanotube that is 10,000 times thinner than a human hair.

Professor Alex Zettl led a team that developed the minuscule filament, which can be tuned to receive AM or FM transmissions.

The first song it played? “Layla” by Derek & the Dominos. Eric Clapton’s unmistakable guitar riff can be heard on a scratchy recording of the nanoradio’s output posted by Zettl online.

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Cheney Pursuing Nuclear Ambitions of His Own

By Jason Leopold
    t r u t h o u t | Report    Monday 05 November 2007

    While Dick Cheney has been talking tough over the years about Iran’s alleged nuclear activities, the vice president has been quietly pursuing nuclear ambitions of his own.

    For more than two years, Cheney and a relatively unknown administration official, Deputy Energy Secretary Clay Sell, have been regularly visiting the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to ensure agency officials rewrite regulatory policies and bypass public hearings in order to streamline the licensing process for energy companies that have filed applications to build new nuclear power reactors, as well as applications for new nuclear facilities that are expected to be filed by other companies in the months ahead, longtime NRC officials said.

    Before being sworn in as deputy energy secretary in March 2005, Sell, a lawyer whose roots extend to Bush’s home state of Texas, was a White House lobbyist working on energy issues. He had also participated in secret meetings with Cheney’s Energy Task Force.

    In April, Sell and Cheney had both met with NRC officials to sign off on the final regulatory policies related to new nuclear reactors. Following the meeting, Sell had alerted a group of energy companies they could begin to take advantage of the faster application process, NRC officials said.

    NRC officials said that Cheney has expressed a desire to see applications for nuclear reactor projects approved by the NRC when he and Bush leave the White House in January 2009.

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Defense contract award protested

The winning firm had an unfair advantage due to Bush administration links, say companies in complaints to GAO.

By Walter F. Roche Jr., Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
October 26, 2007

WASHINGTON — A Defense Department medical services contract worth up to $790 million was awarded last month to a Wisconsin-based company three months after it hired a former Bush administration appointee who had supervised military health programs at the Pentagon for the last six years.

William Winkenwerder Jr., assistant secretary of Defense for health affairs from 2001 until April, joined Logistics Health Inc. as a director and consultant in June. The firm beat out two other bidders with proposals that ranged from $80 million to $100 million less, records show. Under the new contract, Logistics Health will provide immunizations and physical and dental exams for reservists and National Guard members.

Logistics Health of LaCrosse, Wis., is headed by another ex-official of the Bush administration — former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson.

“They stacked the deck,” said Fran Lessans, president of Passport Health, one of the losing bidders. Her Baltimore-based firm lost despite a bid projected over five years to cost nearly $100 million less than Logistics Health’s winning proposal.

“It was wired. There is no doubt in my mind,” Lessans said of the Defense procurement process.

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Defense contract award protested

The winning firm had an unfair advantage due to Bush administration links, say companies in complaints to GAO.

By Walter F. Roche Jr., Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
October 26, 2007

WASHINGTON — A Defense Department medical services contract worth up to $790 million was awarded last month to a Wisconsin-based company three months after it hired a former Bush administration appointee who had supervised military health programs at the Pentagon for the last six years.

William Winkenwerder Jr., assistant secretary of Defense for health affairs from 2001 until April, joined Logistics Health Inc. as a director and consultant in June. The firm beat out two other bidders with proposals that ranged from $80 million to $100 million less, records show. Under the new contract, Logistics Health will provide immunizations and physical and dental exams for reservists and National Guard members.

Logistics Health of LaCrosse, Wis., is headed by another ex-official of the Bush administration — former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson.

“They stacked the deck,” said Fran Lessans, president of Passport Health, one of the losing bidders. Her Baltimore-based firm lost despite a bid projected over five years to cost nearly $100 million less than Logistics Health’s winning proposal.

“It was wired. There is no doubt in my mind,” Lessans said of the Defense procurement process.

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Our sentiments exactly.

Coroner says hero James Zadroga didn’t die from WTC dust

NEW YORK – He became the face of post-Sept. 11 illness after his death in early 2006, galvanizing lawmakers and health care advocates to lobby for research and treatment for thousands who breathed the debris-filled air at ground zero.

James Zadroga, the 34-year-old retired police detective who died of respiratory failure after working hundreds of hours at the World Trade Center site, was often cited by those advocates as a “sentinel case” – the first health-related casualty linked to ground zero, suggesting there would be more to follow.

The city’s medical examiner stunned that community this week in a letter declaring that Zadroga’s death had nothing to do with the toxic air he breathed while working at ground zero.

Rejecting another medical examiner’s autopsy, New York City Chief Medical Examiner Charles Hirsch said in a letter to Zadroga’s family that his death was not caused by exposure to trade center dust.

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‘Many in the US Military Think Bush and Cheney Are Out of Control’

Ya thunk?!!

In an interview with SPIEGEL ONLINE, the Amsterdam-based military historian Gabriel Kolko talks about the prospect of war with Iran and argues that many in the US military now view the White House as being ‘out of control.’

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad watches a military parade in Tehran, Iran, in September 2007. Tension between Tehran and Washington has been rising.

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DPA

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad watches a military parade in Tehran, Iran, in September 2007. Tension between Tehran and Washington has been rising.

SPIEGEL ONLINE: Mr. Kolko, editorials in US papers like the Wall Street Journal, the Weekly Standard and the National Review are pushing for military action against Iran. How does the leadership in the US military view such a conflict?Gabriel Kolko: The American military is stretched to the limit. They are losing both wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Everything is being sacrificed for these wars: money, equipment in Asia, American military power globally, etc. Where and how can they fight yet another? The Pentagon is short of money for procurement, and that is what so many people in the military bureaucracy live for. The situation will be far worse in the event of a war with Iran.

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