Headline News

  • 307,000 veterans died awaiting Veterans Affairs health care, report says

    (CNN)Hundreds of thousands of veterans listed in the Department of Veterans Affairs enrollment system may have died before their applications for care were processed, according to a report issued Wednesday. The VA’s inspector general found that out of about 800,000 records stalled in the agency’s system for managing health care enrollment, there were more than 307,000 records that belonged to veterans who had died months or years in the past. The inspector general said due to limitations in the system’s data, the number of records did not necessarily represent veterans actively seeking enrollment in VA health care. In a response to a request by the House Committee on Veterans Affairs’ to investigate a whistleblower’s allegations of mismanagement at the VA’s Health Eligibility Center, the inspector general also found VA staffers incorrectly marked unprocessed applications and may have deleted 10,000 or more records in the last five years. In one case, a veteran who applied for …

    September 3, 2015 9:22 am


  • DCCC Targets 18 House Republicans in Labor Day Digital Campaign

    By Emily Cahn Posted at 5 a.m. today 0 Tweet Rep. Ben Ray Luján is chairman of the DCCC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo) The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will begin a digital ad campaign over the Labor Day weekend, hitting 18 GOP incumbents on labor issues such as increasing the minimum wage and overtime rules. The paid digital ad campaign will run on Twitter, and are geo-targeted to voters in these 18 contests Democrats are hoping to pick up in 2016. They are designed like coupons “good for one sellout on issues that matter to working families.” Many of the Republicans on the receiving end of the DCCC ad campaign are in districts rated competitive by the Rothenberg Gonzales Political Report/Roll Call. Some are noticeably absent from the target list, such as Reps. John Katko of New York and Will Hurd of Texas — two members in races rated a Tossup. The 18 members Democrats are going after in the digital campaign are: …

    September 3, 2015 7:21 am


  • Twitter could name its new CEO today

    After a three-month long search, Twitter is finally expected to appoint a new CEO on Thursday. Twitter’s board is meeting Thursday, at which it will likely discuss its options for the company’s next CEO. Though there’s no guarantee that a decision will be made, urgency is building as shares continue to freefall. Twitter’s stock has sunk 22% since Dick Costolo stepped down as CEO in July after holding the position for five years. Twitter co-founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey took over as interim CEO, while the company started its search for a new leader. Dorsey has been floated as a potential candidate to head the company permanently. But as he is also acting CEO of mobile payments company Square, many argue it would spread Twitter’s leadership too thin. Adam Bain, Twitter’s president of global revenue, is rumored to be another internal option. Twitter’s board of directors enlisted the help of an outside executive search …

    September 3, 2015 8:21 am


  • PHOTO: Dolphins’ Suh emerges from ocean to give QBs nightmares

    Aug 11, 2015; Davie, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins defense tackle Ndamukong Suh (93) during training camp at Doctors Hospital Training Facility. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports We’re just one week away from the start of the NFL regular season as teams and fans prepare for Week 1. The Miami Dolphins kick off their season against the Washington Redskins on Sunday, Sept. 13, where Ndamukong Suh will make his team debut. Before he gets the chance to wreak havoc on the Redskins’ offensive line, he’ll be terrifying readers with his front page photo for the Miami Herald’s football preview section. Whether Suh is actually standing in the Atlantic Ocean or not is unclear, but it’s terrifying, nonetheless. That’s what Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins will see in his face early and often next Sunday as he’ll be doing his best to elude Suh all game long. For now, Cousins should probably shy away from looking at …

    September 3, 2015 9:23 am

World News

  • Migrants refuse to leave Hungary train

    Scuffles have broken out west of the Hungarian capital, Budapest, after police tried to force migrants off a train at a refugee camp. Amid chaotic scenes, police ordered journalists from the area at Bicske, declaring it an “operation zone”. The train had left Budapest hours after police let migrants into the railway station following a two-day stand-off. Meanwhile, there have been sharp disagreements among European leaders over how to deal with the crisis. Follow our live updates In Brussels, Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban described the situation as a “German problem” as Germany was where those arriving in the EU “would like to go”. But European Council President Donald Tusk said at least 100,000 refugees should be distributed across EU states. Earlier on Thursday, migrants who had been camped outside Budapest’s Keleti railway station surged on to the platforms as soon as police withdrew. Image copyright Reuters Image caption Migrants tried to cram into carriages …

    September 3, 2015 9:23 am


  • Apple admits it has ‘homework to do’ to improve Apple Music

    Apple has “a bit of homework to be done” to improve its Apple Music streaming service, the company’s international iTunes boss has said. Apple Music launched in June as a rival to Spotify and while it has been praised for its curated playlists it has been criticised over its user interface and bugs affecting people’s existing iTunes libraries. “There’s a lot of work going into making the product better. Our focus is on editorial and playlists, and obviously we have teams all around the world working on that, but we’re also adding features and cleaning up certain things,” Oliver Schusser, vice president, iTunes International, told the Guardian. Related: Apple Music interview: ‘Algorithms can’t do it alone – you need a human touch’ “Apple Music Connect is growing big-time with more and more artists connecting to their fans, but we still have a bit of homework to be done for the rest of the year.” Asked …

    September 3, 2015 7:41 am


  • New research confirms lack of sleep connected to getting sick

    Scientists have long associated sufficient sleep with good health. Now they’ve confirmed it. In 2009, Carnegie Mellon University’s Sheldon Cohen found for the first time that insufficient sleep is associated with a greater likelihood of catching a cold. To do this, Cohen, who has spent years exploring psychological factors contributing to illness, assessed participants self-reported sleep duration and efficiency levels and then exposed them to a common cold virus. Now, Cohen, the Robert E. Doherty University Professor of Psychology in the Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and researchers from UC San Francisco and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center have confirmed that insufficient sleep is connected to an increased chance of getting sick. Published in the journal Sleep, the researchers used objective sleep measures to show that people who sleep six hours a night or less are more than four times more likely to catch a cold, compared to those who sleep more …

    September 3, 2015 6:41 am


  • Novartis launches first U.S. ‘biosimilar’ drug at 15 percent discount

    LONDON/ZURICH Novartis kicked off a new era in U.S. medicine on Thursday with the launch of the first “biosimilar” copy of a biotechnology drug approved in the United States, at a discount of 15 percent to the original. The Swiss drugmaker’s generics unit Sandoz said Zarxio, its form of Amgen’s white blood cell-boosting product Neupogen, would increase access to an important treatment by offering a “high-quality, more affordable version”. U.S. biotech group Amgen had tried to stop the sale of Zarxio, also known as filgrastim-sndz, but the Washington-based appeals court rejected its attempt to block the launch. The potential for copycats to take business from original biotech drug brands is increasingly grabbing investors’ attention, although uncertainties remain as to how quickly so-called biosimilars will win business. Biosimilars have been on the market in Europe since 2006. However, the U.S. regulatory pathway for biosimilars, which are made in living cells and can never be exact replicas …

    September 3, 2015 7:01 am


  • Party Animal Scott Disick Takes A Break From The Clubs And Hangs With His Oldest Son

    Posted on Thu Sep 3rd, 2015 7:00am PDT       By X17 Staff Is Scott Disick slowly creeping his way back into the Kardashian family? After partying his butt off for the last few weeks while estranged partner Kourtney Kardashian watched the couple’s three kids, Scott finally got back to daddy duty on Wednesday when we snapped him out with his oldest son Mason. Last weekend LD partied with Kylie Jenner and her boyfriend Tyga at 1 OAK, and according to People, Disick “looked to be on his best behavior,” rather than flirting with a bevy of beautiful women. Rumor has it Kourt is open to taking him back, but maybe he should stop hitting the clubs before he tries to convince her that he’s ready to be a responsible partner? Or is using Kylie to get back in Kourt’s good graces part of the strategy?   SEE THE GALLERY Scott Disick Bonds With Son Mason Stories from …

    September 3, 2015 9:22 am


  • Will migrants flooding Europe embrace Western values?

    Back when I was in school, I performed a scientific experiment in which I poured a liquid of one color into a beaker that contained liquid of a different color. At first the liquid in the beaker was diluted, but as I kept pouring, the poured liquid eventually overtook the liquid in the beaker, creating an entirely new substance. That’s what is happening in Europe as thousands of migrants flee their home countries, seeking refuge in the European Union. Germany, alone, is expected to have received 800,000 migrants by the end of the year, four times last year’s number. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has suspended the EU’s Dublin Regulation for Syrian migrants. Under the rule, writes The Telegraph, “…migrants can only apply for asylum in the first EU member state they enter, and face deportation if they try to apply in another. But Germany … has now ordered its officers to process applications from Syrians …

    September 3, 2015 10:02 am

Odd News

  • Australian sheep is unofficially the world’s woolliest

    SYDNEY Around 40 kilograms (88 lb) of wool has been sheared from a sheep found near Australia’s capital, the RSPCA said on Thursday, making him unofficially the world’s woolliest. The animal, named Chris by his rescuers, was discovered on the northern outskirts of Canberra on Wednesday and was said to be struggling to walk under the weight of his coat. Tammy Ven Dange, chief executive of RSPCA ACT, the Canberra division of the animal charity, estimated Chris had more than five years of wool on him and likely little contact with humans. The 40.2 kilos of wool removed from Chris mean that he was unofficially the carrier of the world’s heaviest fleece, possibly shattering the current record set by New Zealand sheep Big Ben, found to be carrying nearly 29 kilograms of wool in 2014. Big Ben dethroned fellow Kiwi, Shrek, who gained national celebrity in his home nation, meeting then Prime Minister Helen Clark …

    September 3, 2015 3:00 am