After 244 Years, Encyclopaedia Britannica Is Going Out Of Print

After 244 Years, Encyclopaedia Britannica Stops the Presses (New York Times, Mar 13, 2012):

After 244 years, the Encyclopaedia Britannica is going out of print.

Those coolly authoritative, gold-lettered reference books that were once sold door-to-door by a fleet of traveling salesmen and displayed as proud fixtures in American homes will be discontinued, company executives said.

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Jan van Helsing: Geheimgesellschaften 3 – Krieg der Freimaurer

Recommended book (… so far only available in German):

– Amazon.de: Geheimgesellschaften 3. Krieg der Freimaurer

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CIA Censors 9/11 Book

Flashback:

Architects & Engineers: Solving The Mystery Of WTC 7

Operation Dark Heart: Book Burning by Obama Administration


CIA censors 9/11 book (RT, edited: 29 August, 2011):

One former FBI agent is finding out firsthand that freedom of speech isn’t something guaranteed to every American. Colleagues at the CIA are keeping him from printing some of his own personal accounts in an upcoming book about the 9/11 attacks.

In his upcoming book “The Black Banners: The Inside Story of 9/11 and the War Against Al Qaeda,” Ali H. Soufan wants to write that the Central Intelligence Agency could have had a chance at keeping the September 11 terror attacks from happening. Soufan says that the CIA knew about two of the hijackers involved in the al-Qaeda plot, and while that information might have been of great interest to the FBI, the Central Intelligence Agency withheld the crucial information.

Specifically, Soufan says that the CIA had detailed information on 9/11 hijacker Abu Zubaydah as early as January 2000 but neglected to act on it.

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America’s Nazi Secret: An Insider’s History

Amazon.com: America’s Nazi Secret: An Insider’s History

Amazon.de: America’s Nazi Secret: An Insider’s History

Product Description

Fully revised and expanded, this stirring account reveals how the U.S. government permitted the illegal entry of Nazis into North America in the years following World War II. This extraordinary investigation exposes the secret section of the State Department that began, starting in 1948 and unbeknownst to Congress and the public until recently, to hire members of the puppet wartime government of Belarus—a region of the Soviet Union occupied by Nazi Germany. A former Justice Department investigator uncovered this stunning story in the files of several government agencies, and it is now available with a chapter previously banned from release by authorities and a foreword and afterword with recently declassified materials.

About the Author

John Loftus is a former U.S. government prosecutor, a former Army intelligence officer, and the author of numerous books, including The Belarus Secret; The Secret War Against the Jews; Unholy Trinity: How the Vatican’s Nazi Networks Betrayed Western Intelligence to the Soviets; and Unholy Trinity: The Vatican, the Nazis, and the Swiss Banks. He has appeared regularly as a media commentator on ABC National Radio and Fox News. He lives in St. Petersburg,  Florida.

UK: Pensioners are burning books to keep warm

Hard-up pensioners have resorted to buying books from charity shops and burning them to keep warm.

pensioners-are-burning-books-to-keep-warm

Volunteers have reported that ‘a large number’ of elderly customers are snapping up hardbacks as cheap fuel for their fires and stoves.

Temperatures this week are forecast to plummet as low as -13ºC in the Scottish Highlands, with the mercury falling to -6ºC in London, -5ºC in Birmingham and -7ºC in Manchester as one of the coldest winters in years continues to bite.

Workers at one charity shop in Swansea, in south Wales, described how the most vulnerable shoppers were seeking out thick books such as encyclopaedias for a few pence because they were cheaper than coal.

One assistant said: ‘Book burning seems terribly wrong but we have to get rid of unsold stock for pennies and some of the pensioners say the books make ideal slow-burning fuel for fires and stoves.

A lot of them buy up large hardback volumes so they can stick them in the fire to last all night.’

A 500g book can sell for as little as 5p, while a 20kg bag of coal costs £5.

Since January 2008, gas bills have risen 40 per cent and electricity prices 20 per cent, although people over 60 are entitled to a winter fuel allowance of between £125 and £400.

Read moreUK: Pensioners are burning books to keep warm

Amazon deletes George Orwell’s ‘1984’ and ‘Animal Farm’ from Kindle e-book readers

Some E-Books Are More Equal Than Others

1984
A screen shot from Amazon.com The MobileReference edition of the novel, “Nineteen Eighty-four,” by George Orwell that was deleted from Kindle e-book readers by Amazon.com.

EDITOR’S NOTE | 8:41 p.m. The Times published an article explaining that the Orwell books were unauthorized editions that Amazon removed from its Kindle store. However, Amazon said it would not automatically remove purchased copies of Kindle books if a similar situation arose in the future.

This morning, hundreds of Amazon Kindle owners awoke to discover that books by a certain famous author had mysteriously disappeared from their e-book readers. These were books that they had bought and paid for-thought they owned.

But no, apparently the publisher changed its mind about offering an electronic edition, and apparently Amazon, whose business lives and dies by publisher happiness, caved. It electronically deleted all books by this author from people’s Kindles and credited their accounts for the price.

This is ugly for all kinds of reasons. Amazon says that this sort of thing is “rare,” but that it can happen at all is unsettling; we’ve been taught to believe that e-books are, you know, just like books, only better. Already, we’ve learned that they’re not really like books, in that once we’re finished reading them, we can’t resell or even donate them. But now we learn that all sales may not even be final.

As one of my readers noted, it’s like Barnes & Noble sneaking into our homes in the middle of the night, taking some books that we’ve been reading off our nightstands, and leaving us a check on the coffee table.

You want to know the best part? The juicy, plump, dripping irony?

The author who was the victim of this Big Brotherish plot was none other than George Orwell. And the books were “1984” and “Animal Farm.”

Scary.

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J. K. Rowling Must Register as a Potential Pedophile

surveillance

In a stunningly misguided program implemented by the British government, all children’s book authors who visit schools must register with a national database intended to protect children from pedophiles, and they must pay a fee to do so. Beginning October 12, 2009, the Vetting and Barring Scheme (VBS) will require that all adults who work with children, including authors such as J.K. Rowling and Philip Pullman if they make special visits to schools, will be required to register with the database for a fee of £64 ($105).

The Independent reports that as a result, several well-known authors will boycott schools in protest of the requirement. Philip Pullman, Anne Fine, Anthony Horowitz, Michael Morpurgo, and Quentin Blake have all publicly stated that they object to having their names listed in the database. Pullman, author of the popular fantasy trilogy His Dark Materials, called the policy “corrosive and poisonous to every kind of healthy social interaction.” He eloquently adds, “This reinforces the culture of suspicion, fear and mistrust that underlies a great deal of present-day society. It teaches children that they should regard every adult as a potential murderer or rapist.” Anne Fine, the former Children’s Laureate for the U.K. and author of over 50 children’s books, labelled the requirement “government idiocy.” “When it [the VBS] becomes essential, I shall continue to work only in foreign schools, where sanity prevails,” she said. “The whole idea of vetting an adult who visits many schools, but each only for a day, and then always in the presence of other adults, is deeply offensive. Our children will become further impoverished by this tiresome and ill-considered scheme, and yet another gulf will be created between young people and the rest of society.”

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The New Book Banning

Children’s books burn, courtesy of the federal government.

It’s hard to believe, but true: under a law Congress passed last year aimed at regulating hazards in children’s products, the federal government has now advised that children’s books published before 1985 should not be considered safe and may in many cases be unlawful to sell or distribute. Merchants, thrift stores, and booksellers may be at risk if they sell older volumes, or even give them away, without first subjecting them to testing-at prohibitive expense. Many used-book sellers, consignment stores, Goodwill outlets, and the like have accordingly begun to refuse new donations of pre-1985 volumes, yank existing ones off their shelves, and in some cases discard them en masse.

The problem is the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA), passed by Congress last summer after the panic over lead paint on toys from China. Among its other provisions, CPSIA imposed tough new limits on lead in any products intended for use by children aged 12 or under, and made those limits retroactive: that is, goods manufactured before the law passed cannot be sold on the used market (even in garage sales or on eBay) if they don’t conform. The law has hit thrift stores particularly hard, since many children’s products have long included lead-containing (if harmless) components: zippers, snaps, and clasps on garments and backpacks; skateboards, bicycles, and countless other products containing metal alloy; rhinestones and beads in decorations; and so forth. Combine this measure with a new ban (also retroactive) on playthings and child-care articles that contain plastic-softening chemicals known as phthalates, and suddenly tens of millions of commonly encountered children’s items have become unlawful to resell, presumably destined for landfills when their owners discard them. Penalties under the law are strict and can include $100,000 fines and prison time, regardless of whether any child is harmed.

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