Headline News

  • Two-thirds of Americans want U.S. to back global climate deal: NYT/CBS poll

    PARIS Two-thirds of Americans think the United States should join a legally binding global climate change agreement, a poll by CBS News and the New York Times released on Monday said. But the poll, conducted between Nov. 18 and Nov. 22, showed Americans were divided on what domestic measures the United States should take to curb greenhouse gas emissions. The poll showed 63 percent of Americans favored regulations to cut carbon emissions from power plants, while 31 percent opposed them. The public was split on whether the United States should restrict drilling for oil and gas on public lands, with 49 percent in favor and 45 percent opposed. Far fewer of those polled supported any new taxes on electricity or gasoline use. The show of public support comes as the United States tries to play a leadership role in securing a global climate agreement in Paris over the next two weeks of negotiations. here (Reporting …

    November 30, 2015 8:57 am


  • Gubernatorial Races to Watch in 2016

    By Eli Yokley Posted at 5 a.m. today 0 Tweet Democrats in North Carolina are hoping McCrory has overplayed his hand. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images File Photo) Despite Democrats’ surprising victory last week in Louisiana — where state Rep. John Bel Edwards beat Republican Sen. David Vitter in the runoff –  they hold only 18 gubernatorial seats, compared to the 31 held by Republican governors. Next year, Democrats will defend eight seats, including ones in targeted U.S. Senate battle grounds such as Missouri and New Hampshire, while Republicans will defend four.  Missouri: With incumbent Democrat Jay Nixon on his way out, Republicans believe one of their top pickup opportunities is in Missouri, where the chief executive’s office has been held by Democrats for all but four of the past 22 years. Democrats have mostly solidified behind Attorney General Chris Koster, but for Republicans, the race has already been brutal. State Auditor Tom Schweich, killed himself in February, just weeks after …

    November 30, 2015 6:37 am


  • Japan’s pensioners lost $64 billion as stocks fell

    China’s summer market meltdown has claimed another victim — Japanese pensioners. Japan’s government pension fund — the world’s largest — lost $64 billion in the three months to September 30, and much of that was due to crashing share prices in China. Global stocks tumbled in August and September, driven by the crash in Chinese markets. Volatility remained as concerns grew over a wider economic slowdown. The Japanese fund’s value fell 5.6% to 135 trillion yen ($1.1 trillion), according to a report released Monday. The fund’s holdings of Japanese stocks lost nearly 8%, while its international stock holdings tumbled 11%. Japan has the oldest population in the world — more than a quarter of people are over 65, and nearly 30,000 turned 100 last year. Saving in the government pension fund is mandatory for all Japanese, and investment managers face growing pressure to generate higher returns for the rapidly aging population. In 2014, the fund …

    November 30, 2015 7:17 am


  • Neymar, Ronaldo & Messi up for award

    Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Neymar make up the three-man shortlist for the Ballon d’Or – the award given to the world footballer of the year. It is the eighth consecutive year that Real Madrid’s Ronaldo and Barcelona’s Messi have been on the shortlist. Mark Sampson is in contention for Fifa’s women’s football world coach of the year after guiding England to third place at the World Cup. Please turn on JavaScript. Media requires JavaScript to play. Ballon d’Or 2014: Cristiano Ronaldo named world’s best player The winners will be announced at a gala in Zurich on 11 January. Ronaldo has been named the world’s best footballer for the past two years, ending Messi’s four-year hold on an award regarded as the game’s most prestigious individual accolade. The three contenders were chosen from a 23-man list that also included Wales and Real Madrid attacker Gareth Bale. A first for Neymar It is the first time …

    November 30, 2015 8:57 am

World News

  • DR Congo rebel raid ‘kills 38’

    At least 38 people have died in a town in the east of the Democratic Republic Congo after a rebel attack, a local civil society group says. Fifteen civilians and one UN peacekeeper are among the dead. UN General Jean Baillaud said it was suspected that the attack was carried out by a Ugandan Islamist group, the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF). The ADF has been based in north-east DR Congo after being pushed out of Uganda. Africa Live: BBC news updates Activists who have spoken to witnesses tell a gruesome story of around 40 attackers entering the town of Eringeti on Sunday and killing indiscriminately, including inside the clinic, reports the BBC Maud Jullien in DR Congo. They also blocked the town’s military base and a position of the UN peacekeeping mission, while others looted shops and the clinic. They then left in the middle of the night, having raided and burned down a large …

    November 30, 2015 8:58 am


  • Blackberry to ‘exit’ Pakistan in 2016

    Image copyright AP Image caption Blackberry launched the Priv Android smartphone in early November Phone-maker Blackberry is to stop operating in Pakistan at the end of 2015 because of government requests to monitor customer data. The Pakistani government wanted to be able to monitor every message and email sent via its phones, it said. In a blogpost, it said it had decided to “exit the market altogether” over the row. It said Pakistan’s demand was not to do with public safety but a request for “unfettered access”. Slow decline In July, Pakistan’s Telecommunications Authority told Blackberry the servers underpinning its messaging business would no longer be allowed to operate in the country, citing “security reasons”. Marty Beard, chief operating officer at Blackberry, said the “truth” of the matter was Pakistan had wanted to look at all the traffic passing across its messaging servers but the phone company would not “comply with that sort of directive”. …

    November 30, 2015 6:57 am


  • Graphene microphone outperforms traditional nickel and offers ultrasonic reach

    Related images(click to enlarge) Scientists have developed a graphene based microphone nearly 32 times more sensitive than microphones of standard nickel-based construction. The researchers, based at the University of Belgrade, Serbia, created a vibrating membrane – the part of a condenser microphone which converts the sound to a current – from graphene, and were able to show up to 15 dB higher sensitivity compared to a commercial microphone, at frequencies up to 11 kHz. The results are published today, 27th November 2015, in the journal 2D Materials. “We wanted to show that graphene, although a relatively new material, has potential for real world applications” explains Marko Spasenovic, an author of the paper. “Given its light weight, high mechanical strength and flexibility, graphene just begs to be used as an acoustic membrane material.” The graphene membrane, approximately 60 layers thick, was grown on a nickel foil using chemical vapour deposition, to ensure consistent quality across all …

    November 30, 2015 5:36 am


  • British lawmakers call for sugar tax to tackle childhood obesity

    LONDON British lawmakers urged the government on Monday to introduce tough measures, including a tax on sugary drinks and controls on price promotions for “unhealthy food and drink”, to try to tackle childhood obesity. Parliament’s Health Committee said there was “clear evidence that measures to improve the food environment” must be used to tackle obesity, treatment of which costs the state-run health service 5.1 billion pounds ($7.65 billion) every year. In its report, the committee said there should be strong controls on price promotions of unhealthy food and drink and a sugary drinks tax on full sugar drinks, with all proceeds targeted to help those children at greatest risk of obesity. It also said there should be tougher controls on the marketing and advertising of such food and drink and that labels should show sugar content in teaspoons, among other measures. “One third of children leaving primary school are overweight or obese, and the most …

    November 30, 2015 6:17 am


  • Newlyweds Mary-Kate Olsen & Olivier Sarkozy Reportedly Clashed Over Complicated Prenuptial Agreement

    Mary-Kate Olsen and investment banker Olivier Sarkozy wed in an intimate ceremony over the weekend, and prior to tying the knot the pair reportedly clashed over their prenuptial agreement. Prior to their walk down the aisle, the pair’s pals worried that the contract would derail their wedding, reports the National Enquirer. An insider revealed: “It’s turning into a real headache. There are 20 pages of ‘kid’ clauses alone!” Financial issues were also a big deal, according to the tabloid. “Olivier’s got money — but nothing like Mary-Kate. They’re having trouble preserving his pride while protecting her assets.” It seems reasonable that the pair would sign a prenup — Olsen, 29, and her twin sister Ashley run a successful fashion empire worth a reported $900 million, so it makes sense the former “Full House” actress would like to protect her assets. However, the Enquirer also reported that Mary-Kate and Olivier were “hoping for a Hamptons wedding next summer” while instead they …

    November 30, 2015 8:37 am


  • Confronting bullies on the world stage: How to deal with Russia and China

                                                      A bully is someone who exploits weakness; identifies the meek and mild; and does not pick on strength.  A bully will cull the meek or mild from the herd, isolate them, and force their own will for self-centered reasons.  If confronted from a position of strength; or confidence; or firmness; or a staunch, formidable defense, a bully will back down.  Over the last few years, it is safe to say, President Vladimir Putin, has been such a bully in Crimea, Ukraine and now Syria.  The events of this past week, clearly demonstrate Russia is playing by its own rules in Syria.  That SU-24 was not striking ISIS targets.  It was tasked to support Mr. Putin’s personal agenda of continued support to the Assad regime.  Flying into Turkish airspace cost them …

    November 27, 2015 4:39 pm

Odd News

  • Intruder dies in California chimney after homeowner lights fire

    A suspected burglar who attempted to enter a California home through the chimney died on Saturday after the homeowner lit a fire without realizing anyone was inside, police said. The man appeared to have climbed into the chimney during the night while the owner was away and then became stuck, according to the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office. After the owner of the home in Huron lit a fire in his fireplace Saturday afternoon, he heard a man yelling inside the chimney as the house filled with smoke, the sheriff’s office said in a statement. The homeowner tried to extinguish the flames, but firefighters who dismantled the chimney during a rescue effort found the suspect dead inside, the sheriff’s office said. The deceased man’s identity and cause of death have not been determined, Lieutenant Brandon Pursell of the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office said by phone on Sunday. (Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Chris Reese)

    November 29, 2015 5:51 pm