Headline News

  • Lawyers call for outside probe of ‘bungled’ Arizona execution


    PHOENIX (Reuters) – Lawyers for an Arizona killer who took two hours to die from a lethal injection demanded an outside review on Thursday of what they called a terribly “bungled” execution that has prompted renewed debate over the death penalty in the United States. The complications in executing convicted double-murderer Joseph Wood on Wednesday in a procedure his lawyers complained was cloaked in secrecy came after two other lethal injections went awry earlier this year in Ohio and Oklahoma. Corrections officials said Wood was never in pain during the execution at a prison southeast of Phoenix, but his lawyers said he struggled for breath for more than 90 minutes. An Arizona Republic reporter who witnessed the execution said the 55-year-old inmate gasped 660 times before falling silent. Attorney Dale Baich called on Arizona to allow an independent investigation of what he called “the most prolonged bungled execution in recent history,” to determine among other …

    July 24, 2014 4:27 pm
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Politics

  • U.S. House panel votes to authorize lawsuit against Obama


    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday took another step toward authorizing a lawsuit against President Barack Obama, claiming he has overstepped his executive powers. In a partisan vote of 7-4, the House Rules Committee approved the legislation, likely setting it up for consideration by the full House next week. The Republican initiative already has spawned a bitter debate with Democrats less than four months before elections that will determine the political control of Congress next year. Any lawsuit likely would take years to wind through federal courts. House Speaker John Boehner wrote in June that Obama’s use of executive orders, including raising the minimum wage for federal contractors and stopping deportations of undocumented youths brought to the United States by their parents, risked giving him a “king-like authority.” But Boehner has tamped down calls from some fellow Republicans who have called for impeachment proceedings against Obama, which would be …

    July 24, 2014 1:45 pm
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Stocks

  • Introducing the $7.76 Big Mac


    Would you pay $7 for a Big Mac? If you took your U.S. dollars to Norway, that’s how deep the exchange rate would set you back. There, a McDonald’s (MCD) Big Mac costs 48 Norwegian kroner, which translates to $7.76 in U.S. dollars. That makes the krone the most “puffed-up currency” in The Economist’s iconic Big Mac index. The magazine created the unofficial economic indicator in 1986 as a lighthearted way to compare currencies and buying power around the world. According to its latest iteration of the index, released Thursday, Norway’s currency is overvalued. There, you pay 62% more than you would in the United States, to get essentially the same product. Related: McDonald’s stands by rotten meat supplier So which country has the cheapest Big Mac? It used to be India with it’s Big Mac substitute, the Maharaja Mac — a chicken sandwich. This year though, Ukraine takes that distinction, as political turmoil depresses …

    July 24, 2014 4:26 pm
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Sports

  • Stanley back in form to set pace in Canada


    (Reuters) – Kyle Stanley has endured a frustrating 2013-14 PGA Tour season with 11 missed cuts in 25 starts but hinted at better things to come as he surged into an early one-shot lead at the Canadian Open in Montreal on Thursday. The 26-year-old American, whose short game has especially let him down this year, produced sparkling form with his putter as he racked up six birdies and a bogey in the opening round to shoot a five-under-par 65 on Royal Montreal’s Blue Course. Though Stanley failed to maintain momentum on his homeward nine after racing to the turn in an electrifying five-under 30, he finished a stroke in front of six players, including his compatriots Nick Watney, Justin Hicks and Troy Merritt. South Korea’s Charlie Wi and Australians Robert Allenby and Greg Chalmers also opened with 66s while American Brandt Snedeker launched his title defense with a 69. Stanley, whose only PGA Tour victory …

    July 24, 2014 4:27 pm
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World News

  • Amazon reports $126m quarterly loss


    24 July 2014 Last updated at 22:19 Amazon has reported a loss of $126m (£74m) in the second quarter and warned that sales could slow in the current quarter. Amazon forecast third quarter sales of between $19.7bn and $21.5bn, which could mean sales growth of as little as 15% – well down on previous quarters. Amazon has traditionally survived on thin profit margins, but investors have been reassured by strong sales growth. But today’s warning over sales has spooked investors. In after hours trading in the US shares slumped by 6%. Amazon has been investing heavily to build up its business, including the launch last month of its first smartphone – the Fire Phone. It has also been developing digital content including computer games and TV shows. Amazon has been spending money on improving its delivery systems which includes expanding Sunday delivery to 18 cities in the United States. Web services Another major cost of …

    July 24, 2014 4:27 pm
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Technology

  • Facebook Saves the Day From Slipping Away


    Facebook this week launched a feature that allows users to save content from their News Feed that they might want to read or watch later. Called “Save,” it is designed help users who may be inundated by links to articles, music clips and videos to separate the wheat from the chaff. “Every day, people find all sorts of interesting items on Facebook that they don’t have time to explore right away,” Jessie Baker, a spokesperson for Facebook, told TechNewsWorld. “Now you can save items that you find on Facebook to check out later when you have more time.” Users who see something intriguing — say, a link to an article, a new restaurant where a friend checked in, or a movie, TV or music clip — now can choose the Save option in a dropdown menu in the upper right-hand corner of a post. Saved content is stored by category within a user’s Facebook account. …

    July 24, 2014 1:45 pm
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Science

  • 3-D image of Paleolithic child’s skull reveals trauma, brain damage


    Related images(click to enlarge) Three-dimensional imaging of a Paleolithic child’s skull reveals potentially violent head trauma that likely lead to brain damage, according to a study published July 23, 2014 in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by Hélène Coqueugniot and colleagues from CNRS — Université de Bordeaux and EPHE. A Paleolithic child that lived ~100 thousand years ago found at Qafzeh in lower Galilee, Israel, was originally thought to have a skull lesion that resulted from a trauma that healed. The child died at about 12-13 years old, but the circumstances surround the child’s death remain mysterious. To better understand the injury, the authors of this study aimed to re-appraise the child’s impact wound using 3D imaging, which allows scientists to better to explore inner bone lesions, to evaluate their impact on soft tissues, and to estimate brain size to reconstruct the events surrounding the skull trauma. 3D reconstruction reveals that the child’s skull fracture …

    July 24, 2014 2:05 pm
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Health

  • CDC resumes tuberculosis lab transfers halted after anthrax mishap


    (Reuters) – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday lifted a moratorium on transfers of inactivated materials from its clinical tuberculosis laboratory, after a bioterror lab mishap last month potentially exposed workers to live anthrax, prompting the halt of transfers from other high-containment labs. The tuberculosis lab, which last year processed more than 500 specimens from around the United States, is the first of the CDC’s high-containment labs to be cleared to resume transfers of biological materials. Its other such labs remain on hold, the CDC said. The CDC also announced on Thursday the members of a new panel of independent experts who will advise CDC’s director, Dr. Thomas Frieden, on safety issues and corrective actions for the agency’s labs. The 11-member panel, scheduled to meet in August, is chaired by Joseph Kanabrocki, a microbiology professor and assistant dean for biosafety at the University of Chicago. Its co-chair is Dr. Kenneth Berns, …

    July 24, 2014 1:45 pm
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Entertainment

  • Taylor Swift Shows Some Skin On A Lunch Date With A Mystery Man


    Posted on Thu Jul 24th, 2014 12:33pm PDT Taylor Swift and an unidentified dude stepped out to lunch in New York City on Thursday, and we doubt this was a hot date (we’re thinking he’s just a friend or a business contact), but she was definitely dressed to impress in a cropped top and short skirt! T. Swizzle wore a pair of bright pink suede pumps and carried a yellow purse, and in addition to flashing us a sweet smile, she made a few funny faces while deep in conversation with her companion. We’re just dying to know what they were talking about! Probably not cats and antiques, but ya never know… In other news, we keep getting photos of Tay Tay leaving the gym, but we never see her in spandex and sneakers. In fact, we didn’t even realize that she was working out until someone at the New York Daily News pointed out …

    July 24, 2014 4:26 pm
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Editorial

  • Too good to be true? Don’t you believe it


    The Burpo family.Jenny Marlowe Marvin of JM-Photoart.com “If it sounds too good to be true . . . it probably is!” We’ve all heard those discouraging words of warning. And all too often our experiences teach us they are right on the money. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT So when something comes along that really is true and really is good, we’re apt to say, “No thanks.” In fact, that’s just what my son, Colton, and I ran into. Colton’s a young man of 15 now, but when he was just age 3, he saw something a lot of people thought was too good to be true. He saw heaven. He survived a life-threatening medical emergency and, once awake, knew things he just couldn’t know. Was he making it up? I like what he says about that: “Three-year-olds don’t lie. Sure you learn to lie later, but you really don’t lie at three. You just talk about what …

    July 24, 2014 1:45 pm
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Odd News

  • Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after critical tweet


    (Story refiled to correct typographical error on third paragraph) (Reuters) – A Minnesota man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent. Duff Watson said he was flying from Denver to Minneapolis on Sunday and tried to board in a spot for frequent flyer privileges he held and take his sons, ages 6 and 9, with him, even though they had a later spot to board the plane. The agent told him that he would have to wait if he wanted to board with his children. Watson replied that he had boarded early with them before and then sent out a tweet that read “RUDEST AGENT IN DENVER. KIMBERLY S. GATE C39. NOT HAPPY @SWA.” Watson told TV broadcaster KARE in Minneapolis on Wednesday that after he boarded, an announcement came over the plane asking his …

    July 24, 2014 2:05 pm
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