Lawyers pressing the case of the Australian teenager charged with marijuana possession in Indonesia have requested he be given a three month sentence. It is up to the judge whether he accepts the sentence or not. It remains unclear where the teen might spend that sentence if it is handed down.
‘Big Tobacco’ has promised to take the Federal Government to the High Court after its world-first plain cigarette packing laws passed the Senate yesterday. The laws will start six months later than originally planned in December 2012. British American Tobacco Australia said it would start legal proceedings once plain packaging becomes law, arguing it is unconstitutional to remove its trademarks and other intellectual property without compensation. The laws require all smoke packets, no matter the brand, to be sold in the same olive green packet with large health warnings and graphic images.
The British Medical Journal, which first exposed the fraud of Dr Andrew Wakefield and his now proven bogus 1998 study linking the Measles Mumps Rubella (MMR) vaccine to the onset of autism, has called on British parliament to launch an inquiry into that reports 12 co-authors if the University College London (UCL) does not begin its own independent probe. Dr Andrew Wakefield and another co-author John Walker-Smith were struck off the medical registry for their efforts but the editor of the British Medical Journal says the other researchers need to be looked at too. In a letter to Andrew Miller, who chairs the Commons Science and Technology Committee, BMJ editor Fiona Godlee says if UCL does not immediately launch an independent probe, MPs must step in. “This is not a call to debate whether MMR causes autism – science has asked that question and answered it,” she writes. “We need to know what happened in this inglorious chapter in medicine. Institutional misconduct is too important to be left to the institutions themselves,” she said. Here’s the myth busting cheat sheet we ran on vaccines if you missed it.
The Australian International Pilots Association (AIPA) has gone to the Federal Court arguing the decision by Fair Work Australia to end all industrial action at Qantas wrongfully banned its members who never went on strike. Pilots did wear red in protest and use aircraft announcement systems to plead their case to captive passengers – which caused complaints – but lawyers argued their action had not caused a dollar of lost revenue for Qantas or any impact on the national economy. They said the decision to ban its members from further action, even while negotiations with Qantas continued, was against their rights.
Take a break, check out this bumper Week in Pics. There are some seriously stunning photos in here:
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Kutcher, the man with 8 million Twitter followers, made an honest booboo this week when he took to the social networking site to defend sacked Penn State coach Joe Paterno. He tweeted: “How do you fire Jo Pa? #insult #noclass as a hawkeye fan I find it in poor taste.” Kutcher didn’t realise the coach was sacked in relation to a child sex abuse scandal at the school and apologised before taking a ‘vow of silence’ until he could work out how to deal with the avalanche of abuse he copped. He tweeted: “Didn’t have full story. #admitwhenYoumakemistake.”
Well, we can all dream a little. This exceedingly rare ‘sun-drop diamond’ was unearthed in South Africa last year and, refined even further into the shape of a pear, is going under the hammer. It’s 110.3 carats and has the highest colour grading of its type. MM Team chip in? I’ll spot us $5.
Australians will pause for a minute’s silence at 11am today to remember the war fallen. Originally called Armistice Day after the signing of one before World War I ended, it was renamed Remembrance Day after World War II and is now a day used to remember fallen soldiers from all conflicts. It also happens to be the day (11/11/11) where in the 11th hour, at the 11th minute and 11 seconds it’ll very briefly be 11/11/11 11:11:11.