Headline News

  • Group defends honoring Montana judge rebuked over teen rape case


    (Reuters) – A Montana bar association on Friday defended its controversial decision to honor a former judge who was censured for suggesting that a 14-year-old girl was partly to blame for her rape by a teacher whom the judge sentenced to just 31 days. The board of the Yellowstone Area Bar Association, a private organization of attorneys in the Billings area, said it voted to present retired state District Judge G. Todd Baugh with a lifetime achievement award for his decades of service. “While we recognize that Judge Baugh made a very public mistake … we feel his more than 30 years of service to our community and our profession is worthy of recognition,” the board said in a statement. News that Baugh was to be honored galvanized women’s rights activists whose protests over Baugh’s courtroom remarks and his sentencing of the rape defendant led to his reprimand in July by the Montana Supreme Court. Hundreds …

    April 24, 2015 8:37 pm
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Politics

  • FEC decision may allow more foreign money in U.S. votes, critics say


    NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Federal Election Commission has declined to investigate the funding of a campaign to defeat a Los Angeles County ballot initiative by an international conglomerate, raising fears among campaign finance reform advocates that foreign funds may flood into U.S. elections. The 2012 ballot initiative required adult film stars to wear condoms while filming movies. After the initiative passed, a California HIV-AIDS advocacy group filed a complaint charging that $327,000 in donations made by two pornography distributors tied to Manwin International SARL, a global pornography and advertising firm, violated the Federal Election Campaign Act, which prohibits foreign nationals from donating to U.S. campaigns.  The FEC’s three Democratic commissioners, including Chairwoman Ann Ravel, voted to investigate the source of the funds and assess whether or not to fine the California committee that opposed the ballot measure for accepting the funds, according to documents released on Thursday. But the FEC’s three Republican commissioners voted …

    April 24, 2015 8:16 pm
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Stocks

  • Bruce Jenner interview: ‘Yes, for all intents and purposes, I’m a woman.’


    After weeks of promos, predictions and magazine covers, Bruce Jenner finally spoke publicly on Friday. And viewers of ABC’s exclusive Diane Sawyer interview with the former Olympian, and current reality TV star, didn’t have to wait long before Jenner addressed the highly anticipated subject. Speaking of himself in the third person, the 65-year-old Jenner said: “Bruce Jenner has always been confused with my gender identity.” “I’m me. … I’m a person. I’m not stuck in anybody’s body.” Jenner then loosened his hair, pulling it out of a pony tail. “Yes for all intents and purposes, I’m a woman,” he told Sawyer early in the interview. At another point, Jenner said: “My brain is much more female than it is male,” adding that he has all the “male parts.” Jenner’s comments confirmed what had been widely assumed: that Jenner was ready speak for the first time about undergoing a male-to-female transition. As far as sexuality, Jenner …

    April 24, 2015 8:37 pm
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Sports

  • Logano grabs pole at Richmond


    Richmond, VA (SportsNetwork.com) – Joey Logano will start on the pole for Saturday night’s Toyota Owners 400 after topping Denny Hamlin in qualifying at Richmond International Raceway. Logano, who won the spring race at Richmond one year ago, made a lap around this 0.75-mile oval at 127.071 mph during Friday’s final round in qualifying to claim his Sprint Cup Series-leading third pole of the season. It was also his 11th career pole in the series. Last Sunday at Bristol, Logano finished 40th — the first time he had placed outside the top-10 this season — after he was involved in an early-race accident with his Team Penske teammate Brad Keselowski. Logano, the driver of the No. 22 Ford for Penske, won the Feb. 22 Daytona 500 and then captured the pole at Atlanta one week later. He also started first in last month’s race at Martinsville. “The guys did a great job getting us faster …

    April 24, 2015 8:37 pm
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World News

  • ‘Twin’ tumour found in woman’s head


    Doctors in California have removed a tumour they have described as an “embryologic twin” deep inside the brain of a young woman. Yamini Karanam, 26, a PhD student in Indiana, had been experiencing difficulties with drowsiness, reading and concentration. The discovery was made when doctors performed a newly-developed form of surgery to remove the tumour. The growth, known as a teratoma, had bone and hair. Ms Karanam, a student at Indiana University, jokingly described the tumour to KNBC, a California TV station, as her “evil twin sister who’s been torturing me for the past 26 years”. The tumour was found in Ms Karanam’s corpus callosum. “This tumour was smack in the middle of that, so extremely deep in the brain,” Dr Hrayr Shahinian told the BBC. It was not until after she awoke from surgery that she realised the details of her condition. Ms Karanam told the BBC that her reaction to the news was …

    April 24, 2015 8:37 pm
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Technology

  • Facebook’s Sandberg says she identifies with Ellen Pao


    Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said she and many women can identify with Ellen Pao, who lost her high-profile sex discrimination lawsuit against a storied Silicon Valley venture capital firm. “I thought what was so interesting about the trial is that so many women, not just in technology, but across industries, saw their own experiences there,” Sandberg said during an interview with Bloomberg Television Thursday at the Virgin’s Disruptors event in San Francisco. Sandberg’s first public comments about the landmark trial came on the same day Pao’s legal team said they were “considering” a proposal by Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers that it would waive nearly $1 million in legal costs — if Pao agreed not to appeal her loss. Pao, the current interim CEO of social-networking and news site Reddit, sued for $16 million in lost wages and potential earnings against former employer Kleiner Perkins, which fired her in 2012. Pao said she sued …

    April 24, 2015 7:36 pm
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Science

  • Diabetes drug found in freshwater is a potential cause of intersex fish


    Related images(click to enlarge) A medication commonly taken for Type II diabetes, which is being found in freshwater systems worldwide, has been shown to cause intersex in fish -male fish that produce eggs. A study by Rebecca Klaper at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee determined exposure to the diabetes medicine metformin causes physical changes in male fish exposed to doses similar to the amount in wastewater effluent. In addition to intersex conditions, fish exposed to metformin were smaller in size than those not exposed, said Klaper, a professor in UWM’s School of Freshwater Sciences. The study, co-authored by Nicholas Niemuth, a researcher in Klaper’s lab, was recently published in the journal Chemosphere. Because intersex fish are particularly prevalent downstream from wastewater treatment plants, many studies have investigated the effect of hormones from birth control pills, Klaper said. Initially, the results of her study seemed surprising since metformin is not a hormone and it targets blood sugar …

    April 24, 2015 7:56 pm
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Health

  • Feeling grateful may improve health for heart failure patients


    (Reuters Health) – Feeling grateful may help heart failure patients heal both physically and emotionally, say U.S. researchers. Gratitude was linked to better sleep and mood, as well as lower levels of inflammation in people coping with heart failure in a California study. Lead author Paul Mills said in an email that previous studies have focused on the benefits of spirituality in general, and have tied it to a better quality of life and better physical health. Mills, who works in the departments of public health and psychiatry at the University of California, San Diego, decided to narrow this focus. He and his research team were inspired by the link between gratitude and the heart in language, such as the expression “a grateful heart,” he told Reuters Health. “We wanted to examine gratitude in a population that has been challenged in terms of their cardiac health,” said Mills, who is also affiliated with the Chopra …

    April 24, 2015 8:17 pm
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Entertainment

  • Elizabeth Olsen: Why nudity is a risk worth taking


    That seems to be an important boundary in the world of entertainment, since nudity provides some vital moments for characters in film. After all, what would Basic Instinct be without Sharon Stone’s open-legged interview scene? And Brokeback Mountain wouldn’t have been Brokeback Mountain if Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger hadn’t been willing to go for it. More: The Olsen twins scoff at haters for “uneducated perspective” Actress Elizabeth Olsen understands the significance of this decision. In fact, it’s something she’s clearly thought a lot about. In a new interview with Net-A-Porter’s digital magazine, The Edit, Olsen says she was inspired by the careers of leading ladies like Kate Winslet and Cate Blanchett, who have both taken some risky roles. “I remember watching Holy Smoke and thinking that it was so reassuring to see a young Kate doing something that was so bold in so many ways,” Olsen explained. “I thought to myself, ‘OK, so it …

    April 24, 2015 6:56 pm
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Editorial

  • Message to an unknown pregnant woman


    FILE — Aug. 20, 2014: A horse grazes on a pasture near Sehnde, northern Germany, at sunrise. (AP Photo/dpa,Julian Stratenschulte) This week I took advantage of a beautiful afternoon and went for a walk with my 11-year-old son. We left our car in a parking lot and sauntered from one end of our small town to the other and back again. We had a terrific time. But let’s be honest, any adventure that begins with ice cream, ends with tacos and features a visit to Radio Shack is a blockbuster hit. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT Not long after we began doubling back to our car, my son noticed something unusual in the gravel near some hibernating train tracks that slice through town. I couldn’t help but say a silent prayer for this woman – whomever she might be. He stopped to poke it with a stick and I continued moving along. When I looked over my shoulder and invited …

    April 24, 2015 8:17 pm
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Odd News

  • Woman who hit Venezuela leader with mango rewarded with new home


    CARACAS (Reuters) – A woman who bashed President Nicolas Maduro on the head with a mango has been promised a new house for her troubles in a surreal tropical tale that has gone viral in Venezuela. The 52-year-old president was driving a bus through a crowd last weekend in the central state of Aragua when someone in the crowd tossed the fruit at him. “It says: ‘If you can, call me’,” the former bus driver said later during the week, as he displayed the fruit with a name and phone number scrawled on it on television. “Marleny Olivo had a problem with her house. (Officials) called her. She was scared. She couldn’t believe it was true. … I’ve approved an apartment for you, Marleny, as part of the ‘Grand Venezuelan Housing Mission’,” he added, vowing to eat the mango. Venezuela’s ever ebullient cybersphere did not miss a beat, with the president’s populist gesture drawing admiration …

    April 24, 2015 7:56 pm
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