Headline News

  • Obama to name Sally Yates as pick for deputy attorney general


    HONOLULU (Reuters) – President Barack Obama is expected to announce on Monday that Attorney Sally Yates will be his nominee for deputy attorney general, the No. 2 position at the Justice Department, a U.S. official said. Yates currently serves as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia where she has made a name for herself by prosecuting several high-profile cases. She is known as a close ally of outgoing U.S. Attorney Eric Holder’s Justice Department. If confirmed by Congress, Yates will replace outgoing Deputy Attorney General James Cole who is leaving to take a job with Pepsi Co. The choice of Yates signals that little may change at the Justice Department after Holder leaves the post. Yates currently serves on Holder’s advisory committee of U.S. attorneys under the leadership of Loretta Lynch, Obama’s pick to be the next attorney general. “Their very effective partnership leading the U.S. attorney community will be taken to a …

    December 21, 2014 4:52 pm
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Politics

  • Young Cuban-American groups emerge as Obama allies


    MIAMI (Reuters) – For a handful of Cuban-Americans, President Barack Obama’s new Cuba policy wasn’t much of a shocker. For months, they quietly advised the White House in hopes of shaping a new policy towards the communist-run nation. “A lot of what the president announced is what we, and others in Miami, have been doing for a long time,” said Felice Gorordo, co-founder of Roots of Hope, a non-partisan group of Cuban-American university students and young professionals. Their mission: closer contact with the island to build mutual understanding – a point of view that’s often at odds with their parents and grandparents. But they offer much more than policy advice. Obama is counting on this organization, and others like them, to help pave the way for his new policy that includes measures from promoting private sector entrepreneurship, to modernizing the island’s telecommunications infrastructure and restoring access to U.S. banking services. “There is a clear understanding …

    December 21, 2014 4:12 pm
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Stocks

  • Meet the world’s No. 1 dealer in Guinness art


      Robert Lloyd, a New York antique dealer, holds an unusual distinction: He is the world’s largest dealer of Guinness advertising art. He has bought hundreds of paintings, once lost to obscurity in a London archive, that were original renderings of iconic Guinness posters displayed in pubs and college dorm rooms. The paintings are by the English artist John Gilroy, who died in 1985. Gilroy worked for S.H. Benson, an advertising agency that held the Guinness account from 1929 until the late 1960s. Gilroy designed thousands of posters for the beer giant’s ad campaigns. Lloyd, the antique dealer, came upon his Guinness obsession somewhat accidentally. Nearly five years ago, he was at an antique show in Florida when he stumbled on a few of the original Guinness paintings. Lloyd bought what the dealer had on hand but was thirsty for more. He went to London to see the rest of the paintings — and wasted …

    December 21, 2014 5:13 pm
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Sports

  • Marseille tops Lille to extend lead


    Marseille, France (SportsNetwork.com) – Ligue 1 leaders Marseille extended their lead atop the table to three points on Sunday with a 2-1 win over Lille at the Stade Velodrome. Coming off a 1-0 loss to Monaco in league play last time out, the Marseille hoped to find its winning formula against Lille and create some breathing space in the table following PSG’s draw with Montpellier on Saturday. The home side grabbed the lead after 32 minutes thanks to an own goal from Lille’s Nolan Roux, but Lille found an equalizer in the 61st minute through Idrissa Gana Gueye. The goal seemed to give Lille a boost and the carried the play for the next few minutes, but Marseille grabbed the winner in the 69th minute through a tally from Michy Batshuay. The result sees Marseille extend its lead to three points over PSG, while Lille remains in 13th place in the table with 21 points …

    December 21, 2014 5:13 pm
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World News

  • Oil price fall ‘not Opec’s fault’


    21 December 2014 Last updated at 20:54 Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said falling prices were not good for the country, but would help stimulate global economic growth Oil-rich Gulf states have vowed not to cut crude production, blaming speculators and producers outside the Opec group for tumbling prices. Saudi Arabia’s Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said “the spread of misleading information and speculation” had contributed to the 40% price fall. Speaking in Abu Dhabi, he also dismissed claims of a Saudi plot to push prices down for political goals. Ministers from Kuwait and the UAE also said there were no plans to cut output. Mr Naimi said that if producer countries outside Opec wanted to restrict output, “they are welcome”. “We are not going to cut, certainly Saudi Arabia is not going to cut.” Kuwait’s Oil Minister Ali al-Omair said Opec did not need to cut production and would not consider an emergency meeting. …

    December 21, 2014 4:53 pm
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Technology

  • Madonna: I did not say, ‘Hey, here’s my music, and it’s finished.’ It was theft


    Madonna has defended her description of the leak of 13 unfinished demos from her forthcoming album as “a form of terrorism” and “artistic rape”. Speaking to The Guardian on Sunday, the singer said she was “living in a state of terror” following the leak, adding that there was “a big possibility” they were the result of her personal computer being hacked. “Obviously there is a person, or a group of people behind this that were essentially terrorising me. I don’t want to sound alarming, but certainly that’s how I felt. It’s one thing if someone comes into your house and steals a painting off your wall: that’s also a violation, but, your work, as an artist, that’s devastating. I’m an artistic person, I’m very expressive. I’m sorry if words alarm people, but that’s what it felt like. It was not a consensual agreement. I did not say ‘hey, here’s my music, and it’s finished.’ It …

    December 21, 2014 4:33 pm
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Science

  • In one aspect of vision, computers catch up to primate brain


    For decades, neuroscientists have been trying to design computer networks that can mimic visual skills such as recognizing objects, which the human brain does very accurately and quickly. Until now, no computer model has been able to match the primate brain at visual object recognition during a brief glance. However, a new study from MIT neuroscientists has found that one of the latest generation of these so-called “deep neural networks” matches the primate brain. Because these networks are based on neuroscientists’ current understanding of how the brain performs object recognition, the success of the latest networks suggest that neuroscientists have a fairly accurate grasp of how object recognition works, says James DiCarlo, a professor of neuroscience and head of MIT’s Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and the senior author of a paper describing the study in the Dec. 11 issue of the journal PLoS Computational Biology. “The fact that the models predict the neural …

    December 21, 2014 4:34 pm
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Health

  • U.S. FDA approves AbbVie all-oral hepatitis C treatment


    (Reuters) – U.S. health regulators on Friday approved AbbVie’s all-oral treatment for hepatitis C, providing the first competition for Gilead Sciences huge selling and expensive medicine for the liver-destroying virus. The AbbVie regimen consists of four different anti-viral drugs to be taken as three pills in the morning and one in the evening. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the regimen, which will be sold under the brand name Viekira Pak, for patients with genotype 1 form of the virus, the most common type of hepatitis C and the most difficult to treat. Gilead’s Sovaldi, which was approved a year ago, had been selling at the rate of about $3 billion per quarter due to huge pent up demand. Sovaldi is now combined with another Gilead drug and sold as Harvoni, which is taken as one pill once a day for 12 weeks at a cost of about $94,500. Some patients can take it …

    December 21, 2014 4:32 pm
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Entertainment

  • Kesha Keeps Her Cool At The Airport


    Posted on Sun Dec 21st, 2014 9:00am PDT       By X17 Staff Kesha departed from Los Angeles International Airport on Saturday afternoon, and while she was in good spirits, she didn’t seem to want to talk about her sexual battery lawsuit against former producer Dr. Luke. The 27-year-old singer has been keeping a low profile since filing suit against Luke (nee Lukasz Gottwald) in October, but just last month he filed a lawsuit against Kesha’s attorney Mark Geragos over a series of defamatory tweets. When Lady Gaga revealed in an interview that she had been a victim of sexual assault, Geragos posted a number of inappropriate messages and alleged that Luke was the perp. The summons, which was filed in New York City, reads, “Through the publication of these ‘tweets,’ [Geragos] unambiguously and crassly asserted that [Dr. Luke] was the ‘rapist’ who sexually assaulted Lady Gaga.” In her lawsuit, Kesha claims that Luke has “sexually, physically, verbally …

    December 21, 2014 4:12 pm
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Editorial

  • Last minute Christmas shopping: Five things to avoid


    FILE — Nov. 28, 2014: A man dressed as Santa Claus greets shoppers outside the J.C. Penney store at the Glendale Galleria shopping mall in Glendale, Calif. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes) This weekend millions of Americans will take to the mall to get last-minute gifts for their loved ones. They will pour through the already-picked-over selections to try and find “the gift.” For those of you who are forced into the mall this weekend: I’m sorry. Here are five things to avoid as we enter the final shopping days before Christmas.   1. Believe the best bargains are found if you wait until the last minute. While it’s true, retailers are starting their after-Christmas sales earlier than ever – just as the Christmas shopping season starts before you get to Thanksgiving dessert – seasoned shoppers know (1) value and (2) bargain do not mean the same thing.  We all know just because something is cheap doesn’t mean …

    December 20, 2014 4:21 pm
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Odd News

  • Captive orangutan has human right to freedom, Argentine court rules


    BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) – An orangutan held in an Argentine zoo can be freed and transferred to a sanctuary after a court recognized the ape as a “non-human person” unlawfully deprived of its freedom, local media reported on Sunday. Animal rights campaigners filed a habeas corpus petition – a document more typically used to challenge the legality of a person’s detention or imprisonment – in November on behalf of Sandra, a 29-year-old Sumatran orangutan at the Buenos Aires zoo. In a landmark ruling that could pave the way for more lawsuits, the Association of Officials and Lawyers for Animal Rights (AFADA) argued the ape had sufficient cognitive functions and should not be treated as an object. The court agreed Sandra, born into captivity in Germany before being transferred to Argentina two decades ago, deserved the basic rights of a “non-human person.” “This opens the way not only for other Great Apes, but also for other …

    December 21, 2014 4:33 pm
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