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Issue 62 - Hoax-Slayer Newsletter

Issue 62: June 2006

This month in Hoax-Slayer:
Ashley Flores Hoax Email

Click here to access the stand-alone version of the Ashley Flores article



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Cruise Control Hydroplane Warning

The email forward shown below warns that drivers should not use cruise control in the rain. The message claims that using cruise control can actually cause the vehicle to accelerate through the air if it hits standing water and hydroplanes (aquaplanes). While the core claim (don't use cruise control in wet conditions) is valid, the message seriously mangles the facts and is therefore misleading and overly alarmist.

Certainly, using your vehicle's cruise control in wet or icy conditions can be dangerous - but not for the reasons outlined in this warning message. It almost goes without saying that aquaplaning can occur regardless of whether cruise control is engaged or not. Aquaplaning occurs when a tyre's grooves cannot remove water quickly enough and the tyre therefore loses contact with the road surface and skims across the top of the standing water. Car accidents often happen as a result of aquaplaning, but in many cases this is due to poorly maintained vehicles, driver inattention or poor road conditions and has nothing at all to do with cruise control.

That said, if cruise control is engaged when aquaplaning occurs, the driver's subsequent reaction could make the encounter worse than it may have otherwise been. For example, the driver may hit the brake heavily to disengage cruise control and this could lock up the wheels completely. Furthermore, drivers often move their feet away from the pedals when cruise control is engaged and they may also be a little less attentive than normal. In an aquaplaning situation the small delay caused by these factors could equate to the difference between a safe recovery and a serious accident. Also, an inattentive driver could hit the accelerator instead of the brake to disengage cruise control, and this could of course speed up the vehicle and lead to loss of control.

However, the claim in the message that cruise control itself can actually make the vehicle accelerate and fly through the air in a hydroplaning situation is dubious at best. A CarPoint Australia article that debunks the claims in the email notes:
This is the key that makes a nonsense of the email. Modern cars take their speedo reading from the driveshaft or transmission. This means the cruise control bases its responses on the speed of the driven wheels, not the car itself. This is an important distinction and fail safe position.

If the driven wheels skid because they lose grip, the spinning wheels will cause the speedo to show a higher reading which will force the cruise control to release the throttle faster than most drivers. Regardless of whether the car itself slows down or speeds up, the cruise control will always reduce the throttle no matter what until the driven wheels slow down back to the pre-set speed.

If the wheels continue to slip under this scenario, this will always leave the car travelling more slowly relative to the road, not faster as described in the email.

This finding is confirmed by the RAA's Technical Manager Mark Borlace, who explains:
"Should the car's tyres break traction with the road, such as in an aquaplane situation, the increase in wheel speed would be sensed and the cruise control system would then reduce the amount of throttle and maintain the set speed."

"Additionally, cruise control systems are deactivated as soon as the brake is applied. As braking is usually an automatic reaction in most emergency situations, the scenario of cruise control causing an increase in vehicle speed is highly unlikely."

Thus, there is no inherent factor in the cruise control mechanism itself that could lead to a hydroplaning vehicle speeding up and flying through the air.

Like many email "warnings" there is no way of verifying if the event described in the message actually occurred or was simply added to drive home the core points. The version included here is set in Australia. However, other versions with virtually identical wording have featured US place names. This duplication implies that, at least for later versions of the message, the perpetrator is not relating an actual incident he or she has experienced but has simply altered an existing message to fit local conditions.

The bottom line? Using cruise control in wet conditions certainly can be dangerous but it will NOT cause your vehicle to speed up and fly through the air. Engaging cruise control in any road situation that is less than optimal is ill-advised. Such road situations include not only wet and rainy conditions , but also icy roads, high traffic, poor visibility and rough, narrow, hilly or excessively bendy roads. However, do we really need an unverified and factually dubious email forward to make us aware of such factors? I would hope that not using cruise control in wet or other potentially dangerous conditions would simply be common sense for any responsible driver.



For an in depth technical analysis of this issue, see:
Cruise Control and Aquaplaning: the facts

An example of the email:
NEVER KNEW THIS BEFORE

I wonder how many people know about this?

A 36-year-old female had an accident several weeks ago and totalled her car. A resident of Wollongong, NSW, she was travelling between Wollongong & Sydney. It was raining, though not excessively, when her car suddenly began to hydroplane and literally flew through the air.

She was not seriously injured but very stunned at the sudden occurrence!

When she explained to the policeman what had happened, he told her something that every driver should know - NEVER DRIVE IN THE RAIN WITH YOUR CRUISE CONTROL ON. She had thought she was being cautious by setting the cruise control and maintaining a safe consistent speed in the rain. But the policeman told her that if the cruise control is on and your car begins to hydroplane -- when your tyres lose contact with the pavement, your car will accelerate to a higher rate of speed and you take off like an airplane. She told the policeman that was exactly what had occurred.

The policeman estimated her car was actually travelling through the air At 10 to 15 kms per hour faster than the speed set on the cruise control.

The policeman said this warning should be listed, on the driver's seat sun-visor - NEVER USE THE CRUISE CONTROL WHEN THE PAVEMENT IS WET OR ICY, along with the airbag warning. We tell our teenagers to set the cruise control and drive a safe speed - but we don't tell them to use the cruise control only when the road is dry.

The only person the accident victim found, who knew this (besides the policeman), was a man who had had a similar accident, totalled his car and sustained severe injuries. If you send this to 15 people and only one of them doesn't know about this, then it was all worth it. You might have saved a life


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Question From eBay Member Phishing Scam

Online auction site eBay has consistently been a target for phishing scammers. Scammers have used a number of ruses in order to coerce victims into providing sensitive personal information on fraudulent, look-a-like websites.

One trick scammers are currently using is to send out emails that masquerade as questions from eBay members. The emails are designed to look like official eBay messages complete with eBay logos and formatting.

The messages ask recipients about an item for sale on eBay or rudely accuse them of not sending a purchased item as promised. Thus, unwary recipients may be tricked into clicking the "Respond Now" link in the fake email. The link opens a bogus website that looks very similar to the genuine eBay login page. Login details and other personal information that victims enter into forms on this bogus website can then be harvested by scammers.

If you receive any unsolicited emails from eBay or other institutions that ask you to click an included hyperlink and provide sensitive personal information, then you should view the message with the utmost suspicion. Legitimate institutions are unlikely to request information from customers in this way. Be very cautious of clicking on a link in an unsolicited email in order to access the website of a bank or other institution that may be the target of scammers. The safest method is to manually enter the URL of the institution's website into your browser's address bar.

Read more information about phishing scams

An example of the scam email:
Text of scam message:

Question from eBay Member -- Respond Now

eBay sent this message on behalf of an eBay member via My Messages. Responses sent using email will not reach the eBay member. Use the Respond Now button below to respond to this message.

I've sent you the money for the laptop and I have not receive any item from you! You are an (expletive removed) who tricked me! If you don't Respond Now and explain me what happen' I will contact eBay to report you and I also go to the police! I am waiting your Respond Now !You have to know I am not so stupid as you think!!!

eBay Scam Email

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Software Review: Registry Mechanic

The Windows Registry is one of the most important components of your computer's operating system. The registry is a vast central database that is used to store a great deal of critical information about installed applications, hardware settings, user preferences and a lot more.

When you make Control Panel changes, alter system policies, adjust file associations, or tweak user settings, information about your changes is likely to be stored in the Windows Registry. Also, when you install or uninstall software or add hardware devices, the registry will usually be modified during the process. The registry's job is to store this very complex and varied array of data in one place so that it can be readily accessed by your computer system as required. Thus, the Windows Registry is vital for the efficient operation of your computer.

Unfortunately, the very complexity of the registry means that it tends to develop errors and inconsistencies and become more and more bloated over time. Remnants can be left in the registry when you uninstall software. Spyware or other malicious programs may insert entries into your registry without your knowledge. Unused drivers may add unnecessary clutter to the registry.

Registry problems can lead to system crashes, sudden freezes, and sluggish performance. A poorly maintained registry can severely degrade the overall performance of your computer. Thus, keeping your registry clean and efficient should be an important aspect of your regular computer maintenance schedule.

Thankfully, there is a terrific program available that can make the job of maintaining your registry very simple. The award-winning Registry Mechanic from PC Tools cleans and optimizes your registry with just a few mouse clicks. Registry Mechanic repairs invalid registry entries, removes orphaned references, scans for invalid program shortcuts and optimizes the registry by compacting wasted space. For added safety, the program makes back-ups of any registry changes just in case problems occur.

An outstanding feature of this program is that it is very easy to use, even for those new to computing. Like other PC Tools software, Registry Mechanic has an elegant and intuitive user interface and clear and comprehensive help files.

I regularly use Registry Mechanic on my system and have found that it is very stable software, and does a superlative job of maintaining my registry in optimal condition. I view Registry Mechanic as a vital addition to my collection of computer maintenance and security tools and I am proud to be an affiliate for this product.

If your goal is to proactively avoid computer problems and keep your Windows system running at peak efficiency, then I highly recommend that you purchase and regularly use Registry Mechanic.

Purchase Registry Mechanic

Read more information about Registry Mechanic

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Mold in Pancake Mix Warning

The "Dear Abby" article included below was first published in various newspapers during April 2006 and is now circulating via email and online.

Although the experience of the 14-year-old child described in the message has not been verified, the core information is factual. Mold that can form in old pancake mix and other foodstuffs can indeed cause a serious allergic reaction. As the message claims, in one documented case, a 19-year-old man died of anaphylaxis after eating pancakes made from an old pancake mix that contained mold.

Thus, the warning is valid. Moreover, it should be noted that mold forms on many different types of food, not just pancake mix. As well as causing allergic reactions, mold can sometimes produce poisonous substances called "mycotoxins," that can cause illness. Also, "root" threads of mould can penetrate deep into the food and may be difficult to see. Dangerous mold related substances might be present throughout the food, even when mold is only visible on the surface.

Pancake mix and similar products that have been stored for some time should be thoroughly examined before use and consumers should take careful note of use-by dates. Since mould spores can be transported via air, water, or insects, this is especially true if the food has been stored in a non-airtight container or a packet that has been previously opened. Mix that seems a little dubious should be discarded, as the risk of allergic reactions or illness is not worth the few cents saved. Also, if food seems to have an unexpected or unusual taste (or if children complain that it "tastes funny"), consumers should thoroughly re-examine the food before eating any more.

The United States Food Safety Inspection Service has published a fact sheet that provides more information about molds and food safety.

References:
An unusual case of anaphylaxis. Mold in pancake mix.
Molds On Food: Are They Dangerous?

An example of the message:
IMPORTANT FYI.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE READ THIS. ESPECIALLY ALL YOU PANCAKE LOVERS. THANKS.

DEAR ABBY:

I recently made a batch of pancakes for my healthy 14-year-old son, using a mix that was in our pantry. He said that they tasted "funny," but ate them anyway. About 10 minutes later, he began having difficulty breathing and his lips began turning purple. I gave him his allergy pill, had him sit on the sofa and told him to relax. He was wheezing while inhaling and exhaling. My husband, a volunteer firefighter and EMT, heated up some water, and we had my son lean over the water so the steam could clear his chest and sinuses. Soon, his breathing became more regular and his lips returned to a more normal color. We checked the date on the box of pancake mix and, to my dismay, found it was very outdated. As a reference librarian at an academic institution, I have the ability to search through many research databases. I did just that, and found an article the next day that mentioned a 19-year-old male DYING after eating pancakes made with outdated mix. Apparently, the mold that forms in old pancake mix can be toxic! When we told our friends about my son's close call, we were surprised at the number of people who mentioned that they should check their own pancake mix since they don't use it often, or they had purchased it some time ago. With so many people shopping at warehouse-type stores and buying large sizes of pancake mix, I hope your readers will take the time to check the expiration date on their boxes. Also, beware of outdated cake, brownie and cookie mixes.

PASS IT ON!!!!


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Nicotine in Tim Hortons Coffee Hoax

This foolish piece of scaremongering has now been circulating for several years. During 2006, a new version began hitting email in-boxes.

The message claims that Canadian coffee and doughnut chain, Tim Hortons, adds nicotine to its coffee and that patrons have suffered serious health problems as a result. However, these claims are totally unfounded. Tim Hortons does not add nicotine to its coffee nor has it ever done so.

Tim Hortons denies the rumour in a statement on its website:
Tim Hortons would like to clearly state that there is absolutely NO nicotine or MSG in our coffee. Tim Hortons coffee has NO ADDITIVES whatsoever. It is made only from a blend of the highest quality premium Arabica beans from several different coffee growing countries.
Furthermore, a 2004 investigation by CBC News confirmed the Tim Hortons statement. CBC had samples of Tim Hortons coffee independently tested. These tests revealed that Tim Hortons coffee had no measurable amount of nicotine. They also revealed that Tim Hortons coffee generally has less caffeine than that sold by Second Cup or Starbucks.

In any case, Canada's food products regulator, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, certainly does not allow nicotine to be added to foods. The agency has defined a list of substances that are allowed to be added to food, and, not surprisingly, nicotine is not among them.

The message advises recipients that they might soon see this information on the news. However, there is no logic to this claim. If Tim Hortons was really adding a dangerous substance such as nicotine to its coffee, it would already be a major news story. The mainstream media would certainly not sit back and let such a sensational story travel solely by way of a poorly written email forward.

Thus, this bogus warning has absolutely no basis in fact and it should not be forwarded.

References:
Tim Hortons Website
Tim Hortons: Is there nicotine or MSG in Tim Hortons coffee?
CBC News: Disclosure - PROGRAM ARCHIVES - 2004
Nicotine Test Results (pdf)
Caffeine Test Results (pdf)
Canadian Food Inspection Agency
CFIA: List of Food Additives (Scroll down page)

An example of the hoax email:
Tim horton's THIS IS INTERESTING!!!!! Please Read

I'm not sure if this is true or not...but if it is, you'll certainly be seeing this in the news someday soon....I quess will just have to wait and see.

Are you a Non- Smoker or Against smoking all together ? Do you ever wonder why you have to have your coffee every morning?

** TIM HORTON'S SHOCKER **

A man from Arkansas came up to Canada for a visit only to find himself in the hospital after a couple of days. Doctor's told him that he had suffered of cardiac arrest. He was allergic to Nicotine. The man did not understand why that would of happened as he does not smoke knowing full well he was allergic to Nicotine. He told the doctor that he had not done anything different while he was on vacation other than having Tim Horton's coffee.

The man then went back to Tim Horton's and asked what was in their coffee.

Tim Horton's refuses to divulge that information. After threatening legalaction, Tim Horton's finally admitted.....

*** THERE IS NICOTINE IN TIM HORTON'S COFFEE

A girl I know was on the patch to quit smoking. After a couple of days she was having chest pains & was rushed to the hospital. The doctor told her that she was on a Nicotine overload. She swore up & down that she had not been smoking. SHE WAS HAVING HER COFFEE EVERY MORNING.

Now imagine a women who quits smoking because she finds out that she is pregnant, but still likes to have her Tim Horton's once in a while.

THIS IS NOT A JOKE, PLEASE PASS THIS ALONG.... YOU MIGHT SEE THIS ON THE NEWS SOON.


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Cocoa Mulch Toxic to Dogs Warning Email

The email forward shown below warns that Cocoa Mulch can be harmful to dogs and relates the story of a dog named Calypso who died after eating the product.

It is true that Cocoa Mulch can contain substances that can harm dogs if ingested in sufficient quantities. Cocoa Mulch is made from the shell of the cocoa bean and is a by-product of chocolate production. Since the mulch is organic in nature, works well, looks good and can give the garden a pleasant chocolaty smell, it is popular with home gardeners. However, cocoa mulch can contain theobromine and caffeine, which are chemicals called methylxanthines that can be harmful to dogs. Dogs that consume cocoa mulch can develop methylxanthine toxicosis, a condition that can result in symptoms similar to canine chocolate poisoning. According to an American Veterinary Medical Association article:
Vomiting and muscle tremors were the most common signs of toxicosis that occurred following ingestion. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the severity of clinical signs increased when larger amounts were ingested. Other signs were tachycardia, hyperactivity, and diarrhea.

One report, published in a 1984 Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association, notes:
A dog, which ingested a lethal quantity of garden mulch made from cacao bean shells, developed severe convulsions and died 17 hours later. Analysis of the stomach contents and the ingested cacao bean shells revealed the presence of lethal amounts of theobromine.

That said, deaths from cocoa mulch poisoning appear to be quite uncommon. Information in the AVMA article notes that there were no 2006 reports of lethal toxicosis due to cocoa mulch ingestion as of late April and, of the 16 mulch related reports fielded in 2004 and 2005, none were fatal.

While the claim that coca mulch can cause canine illness is factual, the particular incident described in the message is unsubstantiated. It seems that the authors of these types of warning messages often have an unfortunate tendency to embellish the core information with anecdotal stories of questionable veracity, perhaps in a misguided attempt to add a human element to their claims. The message does not provide any method of verifying if Calypso did actually die as a result of consuming cocoa mulch or even if she was a real dog. The previously mentioned AVMA article questions the truth of the claims in the message:
The story being circulated about a young dog named Calypso ingesting cocoa bean shell mulch may be true, Dr. Hansen said, but the cause of the dog's death is "highly suspect." The statement that she vomited a few times is consistent with such poisoning, but not the absence of other clinical signs until the next day, when the dog is said to have had a single seizure during her morning walk and died instantly.

"A big problem from the perspective of a toxicologist and a veterinary clinician is that if you have poisoning from methylxanthines, you get a progression of signs — vomiting, diarrhea, more vomiting, trembling, the heart rate kicks up, then it may progress to seizures if the dose is exceptionally high, with death being uncommon," Dr. Hansen said. "A necropsy would have likely shown that Calypso had an underlying condition that caused her death."

Also, it should be noted that the level of methylxanthines is not the same in all cocoa mulches. The AVMA article notes that current processing technology may result in lower chemical residues. There are a number of companies that distribute the product and at least one, Mirana, claims that its mulch contains no detectable amount of theobromine and is "Pet Safe". Another claims to have sold millions of bags of cocoa mulch and never had a single report about a dog getting seriously ill from eating the product.

Nonetheless, although the truth of Calypso's story may be somewhat questionable, dog owners should take heed of the message's warning. If you have a dog, especially one that is not fussy about what it eats (not an uncommon characteristic among our canine friends), it would be wise to avoid the use of cocoa mulch, or at least keep a close eye on Rover's garden forays.

References:
Danger to dogs from cocoa bean mulch put in perspective
Cacao bean shell poisoning in a dog.
Mirana: Testimonials
Mirana: PET SAFE
Pets and Cocoa Mulch Facts
ASPCA: Animal Poison Control Center: Cocoa Bean Mulch

An example of the email:
Please read and be cautious while gardening. Also pass it on to your pet lover friends.

URGENT info for pet owners......

Yesterday, one of our clients experienced a tragedy and wanted me to pass a special message along to all of my dog loving friends and family. I was hoping you could forward this to your contact list.

My client was the doting owner of two young lab/golden retriever mixes. Over the weekend, they purchased Cocoa Mulch from Target to use in their garden. They loved the way it smelled and it was advertised to keep cats away from their garden. They set the bag in their yard. Their dog Calypso, decided that the mulch smelled good enough to eat so she broke into it and devoured a large helping. She vomited a few times which was typical of her when she would get into something she shouldn't?t have gotten in to. She was not acting lethargic in any way. The next day, Mom woke up and took Calypso out for her morning walk. Half way through the walk, she had a seizure and died instantly. Although the mulch had NO warnings printed on the label, upon further investigation on the company's website, this product is HIGHLY toxic to dogs. Denise (Calypso's mom) wanted me to pass this information along so no one had to experience the same tragedy she went through.

In Loving Memory of Calypso.

Cocoa Mulch is manufactured by Hershey's, and they claim that "It is true that studies have shown that 50% of the dogs that eat Cocoa Mulch can suffer physical harm to a variety of degrees (depending on each individual dog). However, 98% of all dogs won't eat it."


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Computer Tip: Create Pre-Addressed Email Shortcuts

If you often need to send email to the same people, you can create handy email shortcuts that might make the job a little quicker.

Clicking on one of your email shortcuts will open your default email program with a new email already addressed to your chosen recipient (or recipients). You can even expand the functionality of your shortcuts by including an email subject, part of the message body and more.

Here's how:
  1. Right-click an open area of the Windows desktop and select "New".

  2. In the "New" submenu, click on "Shortcut". The "Create Shortcut" window will appear.

  3. In the field labelled "Type the location of the item", enter "mailto:" immediately followed by the email address you would like to use. The following screen shot displays an example.

    Create Email Shortcut

  4. Click "Next" and give your new shortcut a suitable name:

    Finish Email Shortcut

  5. Click "Finish".

The shortcut should now appear on your desktop. Clicking the shortcut should open up your email program with a new email already addressed to your chosen recipient. For even faster access, you can drag the shortcut to the Quick Launch bar.

The above instructions describe how to create a basic email shortcut. However, you can also add more to your mailto: line in order to expand the functionality of your email shortcuts:

Multiple recipients:
Separate the email addresses with commas like this -
mailto:example@example.com,example2@example.com,tester@xample.com.au

Add a Subject:
You can set the email subject line for your shortcut like this -
mailto:example@example.com?subject=Daily Joke

Add Text to the body:
You can add text to the body of the email like this:
mailto: example@example.com?subject=Daily Joke &body=Here is today's joke!

If necessary, use "&20" to add spaces between words.
Use "%0A" to add lines between paragraphs in your body.

You can try different combinations of the above to suit your requirements. Only one question mark is required after the email address even if several options are used.

Notes:
The basic mailto: shortcut should work with most common email clients. However, if you use web based email rather than an email program on your computer, the shortcuts may not work. Results for some of the more advanced shortcut options may also vary depending on the email client used and other factors.

If you use Windows XP, you can check out many more computer tips on my XP Tips website.

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Pascua Lama Mine Email Petition

The proposed mining operation described in described in the following email petition is real and there are indeed significant environmental concerns about the impact of the project. As the message states, international gold mining company Barrick Gold Corporation is responsible for the project. According to information on the Mining Watch website,
Pascua Lama is a mining project consisting of the open-pit exploitation of a deposit of gold, silver and copper ore and its processing to produce doré (gold and silver) and copper concentrate.

The deposit is located high in the Andes on the Chilean-Argentinean border, about 150 kilometres to the south-east of the city of Vallenar in the Commune of Alto del Carmen, Province of Huasco, III Region of Chile."

A May 2006 Reuters article notes that the project is "on track for final approval by the Chilean government despite environmental and community opposition."

There has been long standing opposition to the Pascua Lama project. As stated in the message, there are serious concerns about the environmental impact of removing the glaciers as well as potential contamination caused by chemicals used in the mining process. A 2005 Mining Watch article notes that:
The lack of relevant technical expertise in removing glaciers implies an irreversible environmental impact. What is certain is that the three affected glaciers would suffer an environmental impact.

While the concerns are real, the message tends to overstate the issues somewhat. While cyanide and other chemicals may potentially pollute water supplies, the message's claim that their use "will permanently contaminate the 2 rivers so they will never again be fit for human or animal consumption" is likely to be an exaggeration of the potential damage. The size and scope of the damage caused by removing the glaciers may also be exaggerated.

According to a 2005 article on decanter.com:
Vincent Borg, vice president of corporate communications at Barrick in Canada, told decanter.com 'glacier experts' had defined the icefields in question as 'ice reservoirs or icefields'.

'Regardless of what the experts call them, Barrick is committed to their preservation and conservation. We will move only 5 acres of ice and it is a straightforward procedure that has been proven in the past to conserve the ice. The ice in question only affects about 3-4% of the ice in the Valley so it is not an amount that some sensationalists would like to make it appear,' he said.

On the issue of use of toxic chemicals such as cyanide he said, 'Cyanide is used worldwide and can be safely used in many industrial applications. Mining comprises only 13% of cyanide use.'

However, in spite of these exaggerations and the somewhat hollow assurances from the company, the environmental concerns about the project are very real. In my opinion, the project should be shelved, at least until the true environmental impact of the mine can be effectively ascertained by independent observers.

That said, an email petition is probably not a particularly effective way to register opposition to the project. There are serious problems with email petitions of this nature that, in my opinion, can render them largely ineffective. Concerned recipients may well be better off fighting against the project by lobbying politicians directly, raising community awareness on the issues and/or joining an environmental group.

References:
Barrick Gold Corporation
Mining Watch: Pascua Lama Background
Barrick says Pascua Lama on track
Barrick Gold Faces Determined Opposition at Pascua Lama and Veladero
Are Email Petitions Useful?

An example of the petition email:
Dear friends who care about our earth. Judge for yourself if you want To Take action. In the Valle de San Felix, the purest water in Chile runs From 2 rivers, fed by 2 glaciers. Water is a most precious resource, and Wars Will be fought for it. Indigenous farmers use the water, there is no Unemployment, and they provide the second largest source of income for The Area. Under the glaciers has been found a huge deposit of gold, silver And Other minerals. To get at these, it would be necessary to break, to Destroy The glaciers - something never conceived of in the history of the world

And to make 2 huge holes, each as big as a whole mountain, one for Extraction and one for the mine's rubbish tip.

The project is called PASCUA LAMA. The company is called Barrick Gold. The Operation is planned by a multi-national company, one of whose members Is George Bush Senior. The Chilean Government has approved the project to Start This year, 2006. The only reason it hasn't started yet is because the Farmers have got a temporary stay of execution. If they destroy the Glaciers, they will not just destroy the source of specially pure Water, but They will permanently contaminate the 2 rivers so they will never again Be Fit for human or animal consumption because of the use of cyanide and Sulphuric acid in the extraction process. Every last gramme of gold Will go Abroad to the multinational company and not one will be left with the People Whose land it is. They will only be left with the poisoned water and The Resulting illnesses.

The farmers have been fighting a long time for their land, but have Been Forbidden to make a TV appeal by a ban from the Ministry of the Interior. Their only hope now of putting brakes on this project is to get help From International justice. The world must know what is happening in Chile. The Only place to start changing the world is from here. We ask you to Circulate This message amongst your friends in the following way. Please copy This Text, paste it into a new email adding your signature and send it to Everyone in your address book. Please will the 100th person to receive And Sign the petition send it to noapascualama@yahoo.ca to be forwarded to The Chilean government.

--------------------------------------------------

No to Pascua Lama Open-cast mine in the Andean Cordillera on the Chilean-Argentine frontier.

We ask the Chilean Government not to authorize the Pascua Lama project To Protect the whole of 3 glaciers, the purity of the water of the San Felix Valley and El Transito, the quality of the agricultural land of the Region Of Atacama, the quality of life of the Diaguita people and of the whole Population of the region.

Signature, City, Country [List of names and details removed]

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Hoax-Slayer Humour: Worst Joke Ever!!

Enjoy a good laugh?
Read my review of the "That's Comedy! Joke Book":
--------------

This joke is so bad that its actually quite funny! Its a good one to annoy relatives and friends with.Smile

Two prawns, Justin and Christian, are hanging out one day complaining about the sharks that keep coming and trying to eat them, making them live in fear. Justin says to Christian "I'm so sick of this, man, I wish I was a shark so I didn't have to live like this anymore". Just then a magical cod turns up and grants his wish.

Christian swims away terrified of Justin the shark. After a couple of weeks Justin becomes really lonely because all his friends are scared of him and he thinks, "Man, I wish I was the way I used to be". Just then he sees the magic cod and asks to be turned back into a prawn, the cod obliges.

Justin is stoked and goes swimming back to his old buddy Christian's house to tell him the good news. He knocks on the door and yells "Christian come see! It's Justin".

Christian calls back "No! You'll eat me, you ferocious shark".

Justin calls back "No that was the old me. I've changed. I've seen cod. I'm a prawn again Christian..."

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The Hoax_Slayer Newsletter is published by:
Brett M.Christensen
Queensland, Australia
All Rights Reserved
©Brett M. Christensen, 2008
Questions or Comments