Headline News

  • Woman accused of running granddaughter to death to go on trial


    BIRMINGHAM Ala. (Reuters) – An Alabama woman accused of running her 9-year-old granddaughter to death as punishment for eating forbidden chocolates and lying about it was set to go on trial on Monday. Joyce Hardin Garrard, 49, stands accused of forcing Savannah Hardin to run non-stop for three hours in February 2012. Authorities say the girl collapsed, went into seizures and died days later at a Birmingham hospital. Hardin died from dehydration and low sodium, a condition common in marathon runners, Etowah County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Natalie Barton said. Hardin suffered from unspecified medical issues that resulted in frequent doctors visits, according to court documents. Defense attorneys have said that it was the girl’s medical condition, and not the punishment, that caused her death. Hardin’s stepmother, Jessica Mae Hardin, is also charged in the case, with witnessing the punishment and failing to intervene. Defense attorney Dani Bone did not immediately return messages seeking comment. The girl …

    September 22, 2014 6:27 am
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Politics

  • Poll: Davis Holds Large Lead in Top Illinois Contest


    By Emily Cahn Posted at 5 a.m. today 0 Tweet Davis greets a voter at Republican Day during the August Illinois State Fair in Springfield. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo) Freshman Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill., a top Democratic target this cycle, had a 19-point lead over his opponent with six weeks to go until Election Day, according to a poll conducted for his campaign and provided first to CQ Roll Call. Davis led Democratic rival Ann Callis by 55 percent to 36 percent in the survey of the 13th District conducted by the GOP firm Public Opinion Strategies. Just 7 percent of voters were undecided. The poll found atmospherics in the district also are stacked against Callis, making it tougher for her to make up ground in the short amount of time left until the election. President Barack Obama’s approval rating stood at just 38 percent in this Springfield-based seat in his home state. …

    September 22, 2014 5:27 am
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Stocks

  • Gen Xers are poorer than their parents


    Gen Xers may be taking home bigger paychecks than their parents did at the same age, but they haven’t been able to accumulate nearly as much wealth. The typical Gen Xer has only $29,100 in wealth, compared to the $65,200 that their parents had socked away at the same age, according to a new report from the Pew Economic Mobility Project. Wealth includes savings, retirement funds, homes and other investments. “They are on track to be the first in recent history to fall behind previous generations in terms of wealth accumulation, a key indicator of economic security and particularly retirement preparedness,” Diana Elliott, research manager, financial security and mobility, at Pew, said of this generation, born between 1965 and 1980. Researchers compared Gen Xers with their own parents. Only 36% of Gen Xers have exceeded their parents’ net worth. That’s especially telling since three-quarters of Gen Xers are taking home bigger paychecks than their parents …

    September 22, 2014 6:27 am
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Sports

  • All the Americans will be gunning for McIlroy, says Monty


    GLENEAGLES Scotland (Reuters) – World number one Rory McIlroy will have a metaphorical target on his back at this week’s Ryder Cup in the same way Tiger Woods did in his heyday, according to Europe’s triumphant 2010 captain Colin Montgomerie. Montgomerie believes all 12 members of the United States team will relish the chance of claiming McIlroy’s scalp if they are drawn against the British Open and U.S. PGA champion in the foursomes, fourballs or singles matches. “Rory is the one player that America wants to play because they’ve nothing to lose,” the 51-year-old Scot told the Daily Express newspaper on Monday. “It was a bit like that for us against Tiger. When we did draw him we would say ‘Game on, I’ve got a chance here. “If he beats me he’s supposed to beat me, if he doesn’t, well, what a day for me and what a day for the team.” Montgomerie, who also …

    September 22, 2014 6:27 am
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World News

  • Ukraine to pull back artillery


    22 September 2014 Last updated at 12:11 Under a nine-point plan, both sides are to pull heavy artillery back 15km (9.5 miles) Ukraine is preparing to withdraw heavy weaponry away from separatist rebel lines in the east, the military says. The two sides agreed on Saturday to set up a buffer zone in eastern Ukraine, more than a fortnight after a ceasefire came into force. Although the truce is still in place, clashes have continued around the cities of Donetsk and Mariupol. More than 3,000 people have died since fighting broke out in the two regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in April. Under the terms of the nine-point deal agreed in Belarus, both the pro-Russian rebels and Ukrainian forces are to pull back their heavy artillery 15km (9.5 miles) from the line of engagement, creating a 30km buffer zone. Military aircraft are banned from flying over the conflict zone and “foreign mercenaries” are to be …

    September 22, 2014 6:27 am
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Technology

  • Perfectly imperfect silicon chips: the electronic brains that run the world


    The silicon chip in your mobile phone is not perfect because it is a single crystal like diamond, even though it is; nor because it is ultra pure, even though it is. No, it is perfect because it is an orchestrated collection of defects; it is these that give your phone its immense social power. Silicon chips are the electronic brains that run the world. They fly our planes, drive our trains, take care of the washing while we are out, keep us alive in hospital and handle our most intimate conversations. We get all this from a thin sliver of material the size of a postage stamp that was invented in the 20th century when the popularity of the telephone and the radio led to a general enthusiasm for all things electronic. Harnessing electricity to do more complicated things like computation relied then on thermionic valves that were essentially souped-up electric light bulbs. They …

    September 22, 2014 5:27 am
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Science

  • Program predicts placement of chemical tags that control gene activity


    Biochemists working at the University of California, San Diego, have developed a program that predicts the placement of chemical marks that control the activity of genes based on sequences of DNA. They describe their analysis and report results from its application to human embryonic cells in a paper published in Nature Methods online September 21. “All of our cells have the same blueprint, the same DNA, although they serve separate functions,” said John Whitaker, lead author of the report. “Skin cells protect, nerve cells send signals, and these differences emerge because different subsets of genes are active or silent within particular kinds of cells.” These patterns of activity are controlled by modifications of the DNA that do not alter its sequence — chemical tags that influence which genes are read and which are skipped within a particular cell. By comparing sequences with and without epigenomic modification, the researchers identified DNA patterns associated with the changes. …

    September 22, 2014 5:47 am
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Health

  • UK opens first clinic for child victims of female genital mutilation


    LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Britain’s first specialist clinic for child victims of female genital mutilation (FGM) opened in London on Monday as part of a push to eradicate the illegal ritual in the country. The University College Hospital clinic, initially to be held once a month while demand is assessed, will offer medical treatment and psychological help to girls up to 18, who have suffered or may be at risk of FGM – a ritual usually involving the partial or total removal of external genitalia. In its most extreme form the vaginal opening is also sewn up. Gynaecologist Sarah Creighton and paediatrician Deborah Hodes decided to set up the clinic after noticing an increase in young patients with suspected FGM. The clinic will liaise closely with police, social care and community groups and will provide evidence and expert witness statements for court cases. It will also help identify and protect girls at risk. “If …

    September 22, 2014 5:27 am
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Entertainment

  • LeAnn Rimes’ claws have come out: Singer slams tabloids


    LeAnn Rimes and Eddie Cibrian have babies on the brain Rimes took to Twitter on Thursday to address the rumors about her marriage head-on, and while her tweets prove you should not mess with the “Can’t Fight the Moonlight” hit maker, she has also proven to the world that she has a killer sense of humor. In her post, Rimes called out two magazines that suggested she is headed for an expensive divorce and that there is trouble in paradise because the couple want different things when it comes to having kids. A lot of Brandi Glanville and Eddie Cibrian’s marriage was fake According to AOL, Rimes tweeted, “If you combine OK! Magazine and The National Enquirer’s stories that they’re ‘investigating’ this week you get…Eddie doesn’t want to have kids with me so he’s been cheating on me since April we’re headed for that 50 million dollar divorce we were gonna go through almost a …

    September 22, 2014 7:08 am
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Editorial

Odd News

  • Armed with banana, man robs Philadelphia store, slips away on bike


    PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – A man armed with a banana robbed a convenience store in Philadelphia and rode away on a bicycle with cash and cigarettes, a security surveillance tape showed. The suspect strolled into Tejada Grocery and got in line behind another customer at the counter, where individual bananas were available for sale, according to the tape of Tuesday’s robbery, which was released by police on Wednesday. As his turn at the cash register approached, the man stuffed a banana into the pocket of his hoodie and used it to simulate a gun. Police said the man demanded cash and cigarettes. The robber rode then away on a bicycle, surveillance video showed. Authorities, who did not say how much cash was taken, said the suspect was still being sought on Thursday. (Editing by Barbara Goldberg)

    September 20, 2014 12:46 am
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