• Antarctic ice shelves rapidly thinning

    A new study led by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego researchers has revealed that the thickness of Antarctica’s floating ice shelves has recently decreased by as much as 18 percent in certain...
  • DNA of ‘an entire nation’ assessed

    DNA of ‘an entire nation’ assessed

    The study was conducted in Iceland The genetic code of “an entire nation” has effectively been deduced, say researchers in Iceland. The feat was performed by combining DNA data with family trees. The team say...
  • Extra Points: Gregory’s red-flagged reality

    (SportsNetwork.com) – Sometimes we all have to jump through a few hoops. As a sportswriter I’ve spent the past 20 years writing about the NFL and many other major-league sports, covering everything from Super Bowls,...

Headline News

  • Bankrupt San Bernardino reveals details of deal with Calpers


    LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The bankrupt California city of San Bernardino revealed on Thursday details of its deal with the state’s public pension system Calpers, in which the retirement fund will be paid in full under the city’s bankruptcy exit plan. San Bernardino announced last year it intended to pay the powerful California Public Employees’ Retirement System in full under its bankruptcy plan, while cutting its bondholder debt. But it had not before revealed details of the deal with Calpers, America’s largest public pension fund with assets of $300 billion. San Bernardino, a city of 205,000 located 65 miles east of Los Angeles, declared bankruptcy in August 2012 with a $45 million deficit. It is one of a handful of municipal bankruptcies, along with Detroit, Michigan and Stockton, California, that has been closely watched by the $3.6 trillion U.S. municipal bond market. Bondholders, public employees and state and local governments want to understand how financially …

    March 26, 2015 5:49 pm
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Politics

  • Boehner, Pelosi show gridlock is not U.S. Congress’s only option


    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Maybe it was the kiss that John Boehner planted on Nancy Pelosi’s cheek that early January day in front of the entire House of Representatives that should have provided a clue. Not long afterward, Boehner, the Republican Speaker of the House, dispatched a top healthcare adviser to a secret meeting with his counterpart working for Pelosi, the Democratic leader. The Boehner aide’s mission, according to a source who asked not to be identified, was to determine whether Pelosi might be willing to collaborate on major legislation. Two months later, after scores of private conversations and hard bargaining, the work by America’s political odd couple bore fruit with a 392-37 House vote to overhaul the Medicare program that delivers healthcare for the elderly and disabled, including fixing for good its troubled formula for paying physicians. Still, the rare example of bipartisan cooperation is unlikely to signal smooth sailing for daunting matters facing Congress …

    March 26, 2015 6:30 pm
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Stocks

  • The big profits of payday lenders may be over


    About twelve million Americans take out payday loans every year. It’s a big — and controversial — business. The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau called these loans “debt traps” and proposed new rules Thursday to curb the industry’s worst practices. Payday loans typically come with interest rates of over 100% — far higher than the 15% to 30% annual interest rates on credit card debt. The stocks of America’s top payday lenders fell sharply in reaction to the news of the additional regulations in the works. EZCorp (EZPW), which owns the EZMoney loan stores, dropped nearly 6% Thursday, and Cash America (CSH), which runs Cash America, Cash Land and Pay Day Advance stores, slipped more than 4%. Related: Online payday lenders charging 700% APRs New rules: Borrowers often have to take out more loans to try to pay back the original loan amount. Under the proposed regulations, payday lenders would have to limit loans to …

    March 26, 2015 4:48 pm
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Sports

  • Extra Points: Gregory’s red-flagged reality


    (SportsNetwork.com) – Sometimes we all have to jump through a few hoops. As a sportswriter I’ve spent the past 20 years writing about the NFL and many other major-league sports, covering everything from Super Bowls, to the NBA Finals, the World Series and major fights in both boxing and UFC. You might think personality tests and Wonderlic-like IQ assessments aren’t really all that germane to my job description but that doesn’t mean I was immune from taking them once my company was bought out and a new corporate master arrived. Because we all have to jump through a few hoops. And that includes University of Nebraska star Randy Gregory. As our society skews more and more liberal, views on smoking pot have certainly eased over the years, especially with the younger generation. At last count 23 states and the District of Columbia have given the green light to treat certain medical conditions with marijuana. Colorado …

    March 26, 2015 5:49 pm
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World News

  • DNA of ‘an entire nation’ assessed


    The study was conducted in Iceland The genetic code of “an entire nation” has effectively been deduced, say researchers in Iceland. The feat was performed by combining DNA data with family trees. The team say they could now find every woman at high-risk of breast cancer “at the touch of a button” and it would be “criminal” not to use the information. The reports, published in the journal Nature Genetics, used the data to make a suite of discoveries including the age of the last common ancestor of men. DNA is passed from one generation to the next. If you knew everything about the DNA of a child and their grandparents, you could figure out a lot about about the DNA of the parents too. The deCODE genetics team has taken the whole genome sequence of 10,000 people and combined it with nation-wide family trees. “By using these tricks we can predict, with substantial accuracy, …

    March 26, 2015 5:50 pm
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Technology

  • Beer wear: Dress made from bacterial fermented brew


    This dress started with a cold one. Nanollose You see the dress. It’s fun, flouncy and bouncy with a fitted top and an exuberant puff of fabric at the bottom. It looks like it came from some young, hip fashion designer. But this dress has a secret. The fabric didn’t come from some high-end store catering to Parisian clothing makers. It came from beer. The Beer Dress is made from fabric produced by a bacterial-fermentation process. Scientist Gary Cass and visual artist Donna Franklin previously collaborated on a fermented-wine dress in 2012. That dress had a distinctive look to it, like it was made from Fruit Roll-Ups. The wine dress looked strange, slightly alien. The Beer Dress looks more like what we recognize as typical fabric, despite its unusual origin. You wouldn’t know where it came from if someone didn’t tell you. The design of the beer dress is inspired by the flower of the …

    March 26, 2015 6:09 pm
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Science

  • Antarctic ice shelves rapidly thinning


    A new study led by Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego researchers has revealed that the thickness of Antarctica’s floating ice shelves has recently decreased by as much as 18 percent in certain areas over nearly two decades, providing new insights on how the Antarctic ice sheet is responding to climate change. Data from nearly two decades of satellite missions have shown that the ice volume decline is accelerating, according to a study published on March 26, 2015, in the journal Science and supported by NASA. Scripps graduate student Fernando Paolo, Scripps glaciologist Helen Amanda Fricker, and oceanographer Laurie Padman of Earth Space Research (a non-profit institute specializing in oceanography research) constructed a new high-resolution record of ice shelf thickness based on satellite radar altimetry missions of the European Space Agency from 1994 to 2012. Merging data from three overlapping missions, the researchers identified changes in ice thickness that took place over more …

    March 26, 2015 6:30 pm
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Health

  • U.S. House okays bipartisan bill to fix Medicare doctor payments


    WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday overwhelmingly approved a bill to permanently repair the formula for reimbursing Medicare physicians, marking a rare bipartisan achievement and sending the issue next to the Senate. The measure drafted and driven forward by Republican House Speaker John Boehner and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi would fix a long-standing problem with how Medicare pays doctors. It would also make adjustments to the health program for seniors. The House vote was 392-37. The Senate may not act until it returns from a two-week recess that starts this weekend. Some senators in both parties had concerns about the bill, but it also had strong support. Democratic President Barack Obama praised the House passage and said he hoped the Senate would approve the measure too, because he wants to sign it. “I called the Speaker, John Boehner, and the Democratic Leader, Nancy Pelosi, and I said, congratulations, this is …

    March 26, 2015 6:30 pm
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Entertainment

  • Teen Mom‘s Adam Lind arrested for the second time in 4 months


    Chelsea Houska’s baby daddy was taken to jail on a bench warrant for failing to show up to court for a December hearing related to a child support case for his other child with ex-girlfriend Taylor Halbur. Halbur alleges that Lind has failed to pay a single dime of his support for the couple’s 1-year-old daughter Paislee, and decided to take him to court. Unfortunately, it appears that Lind didn’t take the case very seriously at all — and now he’s paying the price. “Taylor was tired of Adam not paying child support, and now that Paislee is older, she thought it was about time that Adam step up and pay his part,” a source explained to RadarOnline. Deputy Olson of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office in South Dakota confirmed that Lind was arrested on March 23. “He posted bond and was released from custody,” he said. Of course, the reason Lind missed the Dec. …

    March 26, 2015 4:48 pm
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Editorial

  • 2016 Race: How Republican candidates can help school choice succeed


    Republican presidential aspirants are talking about school choice early and often. Wisconsin governor Scott Walker says, “I believe that we need to give families as many high quality education choices as possible to succeed.” Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal argues, “To oppose school choice is to oppose equal opportunity.” Not to be outdone, provisional front-runner and noted education reform proponent Jeb Bush declares, “Choice rewards success and weeds out stagnation, inefficiency, and failure.” This is a welcome development. Republicans can’t talk seriously about opportunity without addressing education, and parental choice is a powerful lever for tackling school improvement. But school choice is only a start—because choice is only part of a strategy for fighting runaway bureaucracy, creating more great schools, and building a political coalition that can sustain its success. When it comes to improving schools, choice is necessary but insufficient. Parental choice, in the form of charter schooling, school vouchers, tuition tax credits, and education …

    March 26, 2015 6:30 pm
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Odd News

  • Heave, ho: Elephants rescue 18-wheeler stranded on Louisiana road


    NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) – When an 18-wheeler truck became stranded by the side of a Louisiana road, two elephants inside came to the rescue. Sheriff’s deputies in Natchitoches Parish on Tuesday morning received a call about a stuck truck. Upon arriving on the scene, they saw two elephants preventing the vehicle from overturning. The truck’s driver, also an elephant trainer, walked the elephants out of the cargo compartment and directed them to help prop up the vehicle, sheriff’s Captain Tony Moran said in an interview. “It’s creative,” said Moran, who said the responding deputies were “just astonished to see it.” Leaning side-by-side, the elephants pushed with their weight against the truck, the sheriff’s photos showed. The truck was carrying three elephants from Florida. After a stop in New Orleans, they were on their way to a circus near Dallas. The truck had pulled over on an interstate shoulder near Powhatan, Louisiana, about an hour south …

    March 25, 2015 10:21 pm
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