Headline News

  • Safety measures ordered for failed oil pipeline in California


    LOS ANGELES Owners of an oil pipeline that burst in California this week must take numerous corrective measures, including an in-depth analysis of factors contributing to the spill and a plan to fix any flaws found, before they can restart the line, U.S. safety officials said on Friday. The corrective action order issued on Thursday by the U.S. Transportation Department’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Administration, or PHMSA, is not regarded as a disciplinary enforcement sanction against the company, Plains All American Pipeline LP (PAA.N), officials said. But it requires a detailed and lengthy list of actions before the oil line resumes operations, starting with removal of the failed pipe for metallurgical and mechanical tests, purging the line of remaining petroleum and an independent review of inspection results, past and present. It also mandates a “root-cause analysis” that explores not only the direct cause of the spill but “every contributing factor” that may have played a …

    May 22, 2015 9:17 pm
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Politics

  • Senate tries to bridge gaps on domestic surveillance


    WASHINGTON The chairman of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee released a proposal meant to bridge divides among lawmakers on how to handle the June 1 expiration of domestic spying programs, with no clear outcome in sight late on Friday. Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina announced his bill as lawmakers tried to figure out how to handle the expiration of certain provisions of the USA Patriot Act that let spy agencies sweep up millions of Americans’ telephone records. Although Republicans control both the Senate and the House of Representatives, the two chambers were at an impasse, provoking a rebuke from the White House. Spokesman Josh Earnest accused some senators of “playing chicken” with civil liberties and national security. The White House wants the Senate to join the House in passing another bill, the USA Freedom Act, which would end the bulk collection of so-called telephone metadata and replace it with a more targeted system. …

    May 22, 2015 8:16 pm
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Stocks

  • China’s richest man bet his company’s shares would fall


    Turns out China’s richest man upped his bet that shares of his solar company would take a tumble — just five days before a massive crash. Li Hejun increased his short position by 796 million shares in Hanergy Thin Film Solar on May 18, according to a stock exchange filing on May 18. He also purchased an additional 26.4 million shares at an average of HK$7.28 ($0.94) — roughly what the shares were trading at that day. Investors taking a short position borrow shares to sell, betting they’ll turn a profit by buying back the shares once prices drop. This revelation about Li’s holdings only raises more questions around what exactly happened to Hanergy. On Wednesday, shares crashed 47% in just over an hour, before trading was halted. The company’s market value tumbled by $19 billion, and Li, who held over 80% of the company, was estimated to have lost as much as $15 billion, …

    May 22, 2015 9:17 pm
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Sports

  • Lehman leads Montgomerie, Henninger by one at Senior PGA


    Tom Lehman took advantage of some gentler conditions late in the day at the difficult French Lick Resort course to post a 67 and take a one-stroke lead at the halfway mark of the Senior PGA Championship on Friday. Lehman posted five birdies in the back nine after a challenging wind died down to reach four-under-par 140, one shot better than defending champion Colin Montgomerie of Scotland (69) and American Brian Henninger (67) at French Lick, Indiana. Another stroke back at 142 was Mexico’s Esteban Toledo (68), with first-round leader Massy Kuramoto of Japan three shots off the pace after posting an even-par 72 for 143. Kuramoto, who won 30 tournaments on the Japan Golf Tour and who is the chairman of the PGA of Japan, was the only player to shoot under par in the opening round. But after a sky-high scoring average of 77.69 in the first round, scores improved by more than …

    May 22, 2015 9:17 pm
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World News

  • Baghdad halts Ramadi refugee flow


    The authorities in Baghdad have closed a key bridge, stopping refugees fleeing the city of Ramadi from entering the Iraqi capital. More than 40,000 people have left Ramadi since its capture by Islamic State militants earlier this week. It is not clear why Bzebiz bridge was closed, though there have been concerns that militants could mingle with the displaced and infiltrate the capital. Bzebiz is seen as the one safe crossing to Baghdad from Anbar province. The United Nations World Food Program said it was send food aid into the province. About 25,000 received emergency assistance on Thursday and supplies for another 15,000 were on their way, the WFP said. IS are reported to be pressing eastwards from Ramadi down the Euphrates Valley towards Habbaniya where pro-government forces are massing for a proposed counter-attack on Ramadi. If they take Habbaniya, IS will be close to linking up directly with Falluja, a city close to Baghdad …

    May 22, 2015 9:17 pm
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Technology

  • Amazon to begin paying corporation tax on UK retail sales


    Amazon has become the first technology company to abandon controversial corporate structures that divert sales and profits away from UK in the face of a clampdown imposed by George Osborne. From the start of this month the online retailer has started booking its sales through the UK, meaning resulting profits will be taxed by HMRC. The group made $8.3bn (£5.3bn) of worldwide sales from British online shoppers but for 11 years all these internet transactions have been booked in Luxembourg. A spokesman said Amazon was “now recording retail sales made to customers in the UK through the UK branch. Previously, these sales were recorded in Luxembourg”. The move will allow Amazon to avoid being caught by chancellor George Osborne’s new diverted profits tax, which came into law from April. It imposes a punitive 25% tax on groups deemed to be artificially routing profits overseas. Amazon had for years denied that its UK corporate structures were …

    May 22, 2015 7:36 pm
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Science

  • Why Honest People Do Dishonest Things


    Every day we are bombarded with temptations — to cheat on our diets, to spend instead of save our paychecks, to tell little white lies. It can be exhausting to have to continually remind ourselves that, long-term, we want to be upstanding people, so we shouldn’t make tempting but unethical short-term decisions. But what if simply thinking about dishonesty could make it easier for us to behave ethically? This novel possibility comes from a set of studies published May 22 in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, which demonstrate that anticipating temptation decreases the likelihood of a person engaging in poor behavior. In this set of studies, lead researcher Oliver Sheldon, a specialist in organizational behavior at Rutgers University, and co-author Ayelet Fishbach, a social psychologist at the University of Chicago, set out to understand the factors that influence self-control in ethical decision-making. The results suggest “a potential solution to curb dishonesty,” according to Francesca …

    May 22, 2015 7:57 pm
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Health

  • Amgen ends partnership with AstraZeneca on psoriasis drug


    Amgen Inc said it will terminate a collaboration with AstraZeneca Plc to develop a psoriasis drug after it observed suicidal thoughts in the subjects of a trial. Amgen said such safety concerns would likely result in a restrictive label that could limit the number of patients using the late-stage experimental drug, brodalumab. The company needs drugs like brodalumab at a time when many of its drugs face competition from cheaper copies, RBC Capital Markets analyst Michael Yee said. Although returning a late-stage drug does not have a major impact, it highlights incremental risks for Amgen, he said. Brodalumab belongs to a class of drugs called IL-17 inhibitors that work by blocking a signaling pathway that plays a key role in inducing and promoting inflammatory diseases. Two late-stage studies evaluating the drug for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis were started in 2014. It was also being tested for treatment of other inflammatory conditions like psoriasis and …

    May 22, 2015 8:17 pm
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Entertainment

  • 7 Things we learned from Hillary Clinton’s emails


    In an effort to maintain transparency in wake of the controversy, the State Department released about 300 of Clinton’s 30,000 emails that she had turned over on Friday. More emails will be made public, this is only the first round, according to CNN, and the communication offers insight into Clinton’s handling of the 2012 attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi. Today, at approximately 12:30pm, @StateDept will make publicly available online 296 emails from former Secretary Clinton’s email account. — Department of State (@StateDept) May 22, 2015 The emails we release today do not change the essential facts or our understanding of the events before, during, or after the attacks. — Department of State (@StateDept) May 22, 2015 While the emails seem to be mostly all business and politics, the exchanges also gave us a little glimpse of Clinton’s personality and her day-to-day life. More: Roseanne Barr explains why she doesn’t care for Hillary Clinton …

    May 22, 2015 8:37 pm
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Editorial

  • Hillary Clinton, Bill de Blasio and the false god of American politics


    If you visit Mount Olympus, you will see scores of crumbling statues to false gods once worshipped by ancient Greeks. The same is true in Rome, where statues of political gods, notably those named Caesar, lay in ruins. We are more sophisticated today. Moderns don’t bow to Zeus. Many of us, though, put our faith in the false god of politics, despite its track record of not being able to achieve all of the things we project upon it. The late comedian George Carlin may have put the blame for this where it belongs: “Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.” In order to accurately judge an idea, policy, or individual “stupid,” one must first have a standard by which stupid can be measured. Moderns don’t bow to Zeus. Many of us, though, put our faith in the false god of politics, despite its track record of not being able to achieve …

    May 22, 2015 8:37 pm
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Odd News

  • Milwaukee man pronounced dead, then moves and breathes


    First responders preparing to take the body of a Milwaukee man pronounced dead to the morgue got a jolt when the man suddenly began moving and noticeably breathing, authorities said on Friday. They had gone to the 46-year-old man’s high-rise building on Tuesday after his worried girlfriend called for assistance, saying she had not heard from him for two days, according to a medical examiner’s report. When they arrived at his apartment, they found him cold, pale and rigid at the foot of his bed, the report said. They did not try to resuscitate him. About 50 minutes later, the medical examiner arrived and notified the man’s family of his death. As the examiner readied the body to be taken to the morgue, the man began to move his left arm and right leg, the report said. Paramedics took the man, who has not been identified, to a nearby hospital, where he was admitted to …

    May 22, 2015 11:52 am
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