Headline News

  • Parole or not? Jury to decide fate of ex-Las Vegas firefighter in wife murder-for-hire slaying


    LAS VEGAS –  A jury that found a former Las Vegas firefighter guilty of murder and conspiracy for hiring an ex-convict to kill his estranged wife is convening again to decide if he’ll ever have a chance to get out of prison. George Miguel Tiaffay had no visible reaction as the verdict was read Thursday in Clark County District Court. The 43-year-old former high school valedictorian, U.S. Military Academy graduate and 10-year firefighter was found guilty of all seven charges — murder, conspiracy, burglary and robbery charges with weapon enhancements — in the September 2012 slaying of Shauna Tiaffay. George Tiaffay was returned in custody to the Clark County jail, where he has been in custody since crashing his pickup truck as police closed in to arrest him in October 2012. Judge Eric Johnson told the jurors they still need to determine Tiaffay’s sentence, and members will reconvene Friday. The death penalty isn’t under consideration, …

    September 4, 2015 4:26 am
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Politics

  • Biden says cannot say yet whether he will mount White House run


    ATLANTA U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said on Thursday he is still trying to determine whether he has the emotional energy to mount a White House bid in 2016 but cannot say yet whether he will. In his first extensive public comments about a possible run for the Democratic presidential nomination, Biden said, “I can’t look you straight in the eye now and say I know I can do it.” Biden, 72, has been huddling with advisers for weeks to determine whether he will challenge Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton, who has seen her favorability ratings plummet over her use of a private email server while working as the nation’s top diplomat. “The most relevant factor in my decision is whether my family and I have the emotional energy to run,” Biden, who lost his son, Beau, to cancer earlier this year, said in response to a question. “The factor is, can I do it?” he …

    September 4, 2015 3:25 am
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Stocks

  • Kickstarter campaign that needed $20,000 got $9 million


    Hiral Sanghavi needed $20,000 on Kickstarter to fund his BauBax travel jacket. He smashed that target and raised a whopping $9 million. The crowdfunding campaign for the jacket with 15 built-in features was launched on July 7. Sanghavi had 58 days to meet the goal, but got there in just five hours. The jacket quickly became the most-funded clothing campaign “not just on Kickstarter but in the history of crowdfunding,” said Sanghavi. It wasn’t only the most-funded clothing campaign. The BauBax jacket drive, which ended Thursday, also became Kickstarter’s fourth-most funded campaign ever after the two Pebble Smart Watches and the multi-purpose Coolest Cooler box. Related: This jacket does 15 things “I knew we had a great idea, that we’d maybe get a million or two, but never $9 million,” said Sanghavi. The travel jacket comes in four styles and is designed with multiple hidden functions to make commuting more comfortable and hands-free. Those include …

    September 4, 2015 4:26 am
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Sports

  • Work to do for Michigan at quarterback, Utah feeling better


    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Michigan brought back its former star quarterback Jim Harbaugh to resurrect the program and hopefully improve the position he used to play. The nation found out there’s work to be done in Ann Arbor after the Wolverines lost 24-17 to Utah on Thursday night. On the opposite sideline, Utah hoped its four-year starting quarterback would take the next step and show some consistency. The Utes called it a night feeling much better and more confident in Travis Wilson. Harbaugh kept his plans for a starter secret throughout the offseason and it was Iowa transfer Jake Rudock who stepped under center for the season opener. Rudock was known at Iowa as a game manager – someone who isn’t lighting the world on fire, but also not turning the ball over. He threw three picks against Utah after throwing five in 12 games last year. Rudock finished 27 for 43 with 279 yards …

    September 4, 2015 4:26 am
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World News

  • IS ‘blows up Palmyra tower tombs’


    Image copyright Reuters Image caption Syria’s antiquities chief did not say which of Palmyra’s many funerary towers were destroyed Jihadist militants from Islamic State (IS) have blown up three funerary towers at the ancient city of Palmyra, Syria’s antiquities chief has said. Maamoun Abdul Karim told the AFP news agency that “the best preserved and most beautiful” had been destroyed. The multi-storey sandstone monuments, standing outside the city walls in an area known as the Valley of the Tombs, belonged to rich Palmyrene families. Their demolition comes only days after IS blew up Palmyra’s two main temples. The group, which captured the Unesco World Heritage site from government forces in May, has previously destroyed two Islamic shrines near Palmyra, which they described as “manifestations of polytheism”.

    September 4, 2015 4:26 am
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Technology

  • Meltdown-Proof Nuclear Reactors Get a Safety Check in Europe


    Molten salt reactors like this one, built at Oak Ridge, could be operating by the early 2020s. For years nuclear scientists have talked about a revival of molten salt reactors, which are powered by a liquid fuel rather than solid fuel rods, that will help spark the long-awaited “nuclear renaissance.” Recent developments indicate that this alternative nuclear power technology is finally making gradual progress toward commercialization. A consortium of research institutes and universities working under the aegis of the European Commission, including the Technology University of Delft (TU Delft), in the Netherlands, France’s National Center for Scientific Research, and the Commission’s Joint Research Center, in Brussels, in August embarked on a four-year research program designed to demonstrate the safety benefits of molten salt reactors. Called “Safety Assessment of the Molten Salt Fast Reactor,” or Samofar, the effort will lead to the building of a prototype reactor in the early 2020s if all goes as planned. …

    September 4, 2015 3:45 am
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Science

  • Not on my watch: Chimp swats film crew’s drone


    Related images(click to enlarge) Cool. Calm. And oh, so calculated. That’s how a chimpanzee living in the Royal Burgers’ Zoo in the Netherlands set out to swat an aerial drone that was filming her group. In an article in the journal Primates published by Springer, Jan van Hooff and Bas Lukkenaar explain it as yet another example of chimpanzees’ make-do attitude to using whatever is on hand as tools. The incident happened earlier this year, on 10 April, when a Dutch television crew was filming at the zoo in Arnhem. The idea was to use a drone to film the chimpanzees in their compound from different close-up angles. The drone already caught the chimpanzees’ attention during a practice run. Some grabbed willow twigs off the ground, while four animals took these along when they climbed up scaffolding where the drone was hovering. This behavior is not frequently observed among these chimps. Filming started when the …

    September 4, 2015 2:45 am
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Health

  • More Evidence Weight-Loss Surgery Helps Fight Type 2 Diabetes


    THURSDAY, Sept. 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Prior research has suggested that weight-loss surgery might help people rid themselves of type 2 diabetes, and a new study finds that the effect might be long-lasting. “This is a very important study because it’s the first randomized trial comparing bariatric surgery to medical treatment of diabetes with five years of follow-up,” said Dr. Philip Schauer, who directs the Bariatric and Metabolic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. Schauer was not involved in the new British study, which was led by Dr. Francesco Rubino of King’s College London. Rubino’s team tracked five-year outcomes for 53 obese patients with type 2 diabetes. The patients were randomly selected to undergo either one of two types of weight-loss surgery, or just to continue with conventional drug therapy to help control their diabetes. The study found that half of the 38 weight-loss surgery patients maintained diabetes remission, compared with none of the 15 …

    September 4, 2015 3:05 am
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Entertainment

  • Tom Brady Wins Deflategate Case, Four-Game Suspension Thrown Out


    Posted on Thu Sep 3rd, 2015 7:55am PDT       By X17 Staff Victory! Tom Brady just scored a huge win in the now infamous Deflategate case, with a federal judge throwing out his four game suspension. The quarterback must be thrilled! The league suspended Brady after concluding that he and two New England Patriots equipment managers deflated footballs before the AFC championship game in January. Basically, they thought he was a big ‘ol cheater! Gisele’s husband denies that he did anything wrong, and apparently the court agrees. The athlete is now eligible to play in seven days. This is good news for his wife! Maybe she can stop threatening him with divorce now! Poll   Stories from around the Web

    September 4, 2015 3:25 am
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Editorial

  • EXCLUSIVE: Kentucky Clerk: ‘This is a fight worth fighting’


    UPDATE: A federal judge has ordered a defiant Kentucky clerk to jail after she refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. U.S. District Judge David Bunning told Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis she would be jailed until she complied with his order to issue the licenses. Davis said “thank you” before she was led out of the courtroom by a U.S. marshal. She was not in handcuffs. Bunning also warned deputy clerks around the state that they could suffer the same fate should they refuse to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. Davis has refused to issue marriages licenses for two months since the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. She argues that her Christian faith should exempt her from signing the licenses. I’m very steadfast in what I believe. I don’t leave my conscience and my Christian soul out in my vehicle and come in here and pretend to be something I’m not. It’s …

    September 4, 2015 2:05 am
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Odd News

  • Pope makes surprise visit to Rome optician for new eyeglasses


    ROME Pope Francis slipped out of the Vatican on Thursday evening to make a surprise visit to a Rome optician’s shop to get a new pair of eyeglasses, insisting that his old frames be re-used and that he would pay for them. Francis was driven to Ottica Spiezia on Rome’s fancy Via del Babuino in the small Ford Focus car he normally uses, drawing a large crowd of curious tourists and Romans outside, footage on Italian television showed. The shop owner, Alessandro Spiezia, who has made eyeglasses for the pope before but always delivered them to the Vatican though aides, said he did not know that the pope would come to the shop himself. “He had told me to use the old frames again because he did not want to spend much money and insisted on paying for them,” Spiezia said on Italian television. The pope arrived with one of his secretaries and a driver …

    September 3, 2015 7:04 pm
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