Headline News

  • Indiana governor unveils $1 billion plan for roads and bridges

    Indiana Governor Mike Pence on Tuesday announced a $1 billion, partly bond-funded, four-year plan to fix roads and bridges. The Republican governor said the money would be in addition to the $3.2 billion the state’s transportation department was already planning to spend on projects over the next five years. “These additional funds will help INDOT make future maintenance and repairs as the interstate system comes of age, and will help ensure that our roads can support the economic and employment growth our state has seen over the last few years,” Pence said in a statement. The plan, which would not require a tax hike, calls for the sale of $240 million of bonds by the triple-A-rated state and $6.5 million in annual savings through 2029 from refinancing outstanding bonds at lower interest rates. Pence said he will ask the legislature to approve $150 million a year in additional funding for roads and bridges in fiscal …

    October 13, 2015 3:53 pm


  • Illinois governor eyes sale of landmark Chicago state building

    CHICAGO Illinois will seek to auction off its main building in Chicago, Governor Bruce Rauner said on Tuesday, adding that the Thompson Center is inefficient and that the sale will save the state money and generate property tax revenue for Chicago. Rauner declined to indicate the market value of the building, which houses 2,000 government workers and which he said will likely be demolished by new owners. Both Chicago and the state of Illinois are mired in financial crisis and the state is currently running without a budget for the fiscal year that began on July 1. The Republican governor who took office in January said the 30-year-old building is noisy, smelly and too expensive to heat and cool given its immense, 16-story atrium. Keeping it would require $100 million for deferred maintenance and repairs, he added. The glass-clad Helmut Jahn-designed building is named after former governor James Thompson. Located on the north end of …

    October 13, 2015 2:52 pm


  • What about Bernie? Supporters say media gives Sanders short shrift

    When Bernie Sanders takes the stage Tuesday night for his first Democratic presidential debate, he’ll be guaranteed something that hasn’t always easy for him to come by: A national audience of millions. Scant media coverage of Sanders’ campaign has been a persistent complaint among some of his supporters. And Sanders himself doesn’t shy away from critiques of what he calls “corporate media.” But the CNN debate in Las Vegas could be a turning point, not just for public perceptions of Sanders but for media attention too. According to Andrew Tyndall, who meticulously tracks the ABC, NBC and CBS evening newscasts, the Sanders campaign has received just two minutes of coverage on the shows since Labor Day. Tyndall said “the overwhelming majority of Democratic coverage” has gone to Hillary Clinton — 26 minutes — with another 6 minutes for Joe Biden, who may or may not enter the race. Tyndall’s data is through October 7. Coverage …

    October 13, 2015 3:33 pm


  • Cox’s breakout game puts him in spotlight

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Sacrificing personal stats for team goals has cost Fletcher Cox individual glory. Maybe not anymore. It’ll be hard for people – i.e. Pro Bowl voters – to ignore Cox after he sacked Drew Brees three times, forced two fumbles and recovered one in Philadelphia’s 39-17 win over New Orleans on Sunday. More from FoxSports ”He’s been a very disruptive force on the defensive line since we’ve been here,” coach Chip Kelly said. ”I think he’s just starting to get noticed what he probably should have gotten before. You go back to last year, and an opponent is talking about going in, getting ready to play us, and they’re talking about Fletcher’s name.” Cox, a first-round pick in 2012, has been the Eagles’ best defensive lineman since he arrived. But he doesn’t rack up big sack numbers in defensive coordinator Bill Davis’ 3-4 scheme. His priority in the two-gap system is to hold up …

    October 13, 2015 3:13 pm

World News

  • Jailed Angolan rapper ‘deteriorating’

    Image copyright Amnesty International Image caption Luaty Beirao, also known as Ikonoklasta, has long called a fairer distribution of Angola’s wealth The condition of popular Angolan rapper and activist Luaty Beirao, who has been on hunger strike for 23 days, is deteriorating, his wife says. Mr Beirao was arrested with 14 others in June for allegedly plotting to oust long-time President Eduardo dos Santos. “I’m very worried about his health and what will happen to him next,” his wife Monica Almeida told the BBC. About 20 people were arrested on Monday in the capital, Luanda, during a vigil calling for the activists’ release. Police surrounded the group as they gathered in a church, holding candles and posters demanding the release of the detainees, who have been held without trial for more than three months now – the maximum allowed under Angolan law, the AFP news agency reports. Africa Live: BBC news updates The rapper, also …

    October 13, 2015 3:53 pm


  • Hillary Clinton’s email server connection was vulnerable to hackers

    The private email server running in Hillary Clinton’s home basement when she was secretary of state was connected to the internet in ways that made it more vulnerable to hackers, according to data and documents reviewed by the Associated Press. Clinton’s server, which handled her personal and State Department correspondence, appeared to allow users to connect openly over the internet to control it remotely, according to detailed records compiled in 2012. Experts said the Microsoft remote desktop service wasn’t intended for such use without additional protective measures, and was the subject of US government and industry warnings at the time over attacks from even low-skilled intruders. Records show that Clinton operated two more devices on her home network in Chappaqua, New York, that also were directly accessible from the internet. One contained similar remote-control software that also has suffered from security vulnerabilities, known as Virtual Network Computing, and the other appeared to be configured to …

    October 13, 2015 3:12 pm


  • Climbing plants disturb carbon storage in tropical forests

    Scientists have discovered that climbing vines are upsetting the carbon balance of tropical forests by crowding out and killing trees. Rainforests play a vital role in the global carbon cycle. We depend on the trees found in these tropical areas to take up some of the carbon dioxide that we are emitting, so not all of our emissions end up in the atmosphere. In a new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and led by Dr Geertje van der Heijden from The University of Nottingham, researchers have found evidence that woody climbing plants — called lianas — are dramatically reducing the carbon uptake and storage of tropical forests by crowding out and killing trees. Carbon cycle Tropical forests store nearly 30 per cent of global carbon and contribute to 40 per cent of the global carbon sink. Lianas have drastically increased in both numbers and bulk in recent decades, and are …

    October 13, 2015 1:52 pm


  • Early Physical Therapy Not a Cure-All for Low Back Pain: Study

    TUESDAY, Oct. 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Early physical therapy provides only modest benefits for low back pain, and the discomfort usually subsides by itself, a new study has found. The study followed more than 200 people with recent-onset low back pain who were randomly assigned to physical therapy or no treatment for the first month after their pain began. Physical therapy included back manipulation and exercise. Early physical therapy produced a modest improvement in the study participants’ ability to function after three months, compared with no physical therapy. However, after a year, no significant difference in function was found between the two groups. And, the participants reported no improvement in pain after one month, three months or one year of therapy, the researchers said. “People with lower back pain tend to get better quickly, and the physical therapy helped them get there a little quicker,” said lead researcher Julie Fritz, a professor of physical …

    October 13, 2015 2:32 pm


  • Justin Bieber’s New Album, Purpose, To Be “Banned In Some Muslim Countries”

    Posted on Tue Oct 13th, 2015 1:00pm PDT       By X17 Staff While everyone here at the X17 offices is a Belieber — not everyone in the outside world appears to be. Justin Bieber’s new album, Purpose, is apparently too controversial for Indonesia and several Middle Eastern countries, which are Muslim. The cover of “Purpose” was released on Friday, which features a bare-chested image of the Biebs. TMZ is reporting that the art has led the album to be banned in Muslim countries because the cover shows him praying and with a cross tattoo. Bieber’s management is reportedly hoping to create some alternate cover images that won’t be offensive to the middle eastern countries that are not predominately Christian, like Bieber. The 21-year-old has recently stepped up his worship and been talking more openly about his love of Jesus Christ, his lord and savior. The “What Do You Mean?” singer told Complex mag, “I just wanna honestly …

    October 13, 2015 3:33 pm


  • The question of miracles: Do angels exist?

    The following column is excerpted from author Eric Metaxas’s book, “Miracles: What They Are, How They Happen, and How They Can Change Your Life” (Plume, October 13, 2015), now available in paperback from Plume. ANGELIC MIRACLES The Bible is filled with stories about angels, but many of us have had our view of angels confused by popular misconceptions about them, the principal of which is that angels do not actually exist anymore than fairies do, or wood nymphs or water sprites. But they do exist and the Bible attests to their existence innumerable times. Related Image Expand / Contract The word “angel” is simply the New Testament Greek word meaning “messenger,” so angels are powerful celestial beings created by God to carry his messages and to otherwise do his bidding. April knew without any doubt that she had experienced a miracle, that an angel had saved her life. In the Bible they are often said …

    October 13, 2015 1:12 pm

Odd News

  • I never sprayed Putin, says Hamilton

    Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton has dismissed as wide of the mark reports that he sprayed Russian President Vladimir Putin with the winner’s champagne after Sunday’s grand prix in Sochi. “I actually didn’t. I didn’t actually spray him. I think there’s a weird picture but I didn’t spray him. I definitely don’t want anything (to happen),” the Mercedes driver told Sky Sports television on Monday with a smile. Hamilton, who flew back home to Britain to join the team’s celebrations after they won their second successive constructors’ championship in Russia, has got into trouble previously for his champagne-spraying antics on the podium. He was criticized and accused of sexist bullying in April for aiming a spray of champagne directly in the face of a Chinese Grand Prix hostess in Shanghai. That incident, highlighted in photographs that showed the woman flinching, triggered condemnation in Britain and Germany as well as on Chinese social media but …

    October 12, 2015 10:07 am