Headline News

  • Marshals reviewing procedures after inmate escapes Virginia hospital, overpowers private guard


    ANNANDALE, Va. –  Federal marshals are reviewing security procedures after an inmate receiving treatment at a hospital overpowered a private guard, took her gun and set off a frenzied manhunt that included two carjackings. U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District of Virginia Bobby Mathieson said Tuesday that the escape by 42-year-old Wossen Assaye from Inova Fairfax Hospital prompted questions about why two guards assigned to him were insufficient to prevent his escape. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT He said he believes two people should be enough to guard a prisoner. Assaye was charged earlier this month as the “Bicycle Bandit,” accused of robbing a dozen banks in northern Virginia and sometimes fleeing on two wheels. Authorities say he was in the hospital after attempting suicide at the jail. He was loose for nine hours Tuesday before being re-arrested.

    April 1, 2015 4:18 am
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Politics

  • U.S. expects Congress to pass fast-track trade bill within next month


    SINGAPORE (Reuters) – The United States expects the trade promotion authority (TPA) legislation, which is seen as an important step to speed free trade deals, will be passed by the Congress over the next month, a U.S. official said on Wednesday. “We believe that the votes are there to move forward,” Catherine Novelli, U.S. under secretary of state for economic growth, energy and the environment, told reporters in Singapore. “We do expect it to be passed soon, within the next month or so.” The TPA legislation allows U.S. lawmakers to set objectives for trade deals in exchange for a yes-or-no vote. Delays in finalising the legislation are casting a cloud over a 12-nation trade pact many thought was near completion, officials close to the negotiations told Reuters last month. Novelli said she expects negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal to be concluded in a relatively short time. TPP would link a dozen Asia-Pacific economies …

    April 1, 2015 3:38 am
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Stocks

  • Amazon Dash: Never run out of toilet paper again


    Amazon wants to make ordering its products as easy as a click of a button — literally. On Tuesday, the country’s largest e-commerce company announced its new product, Dash. It’s a small Wi-Fi enabled button that lets users add products to their Amazon (AMZN, Tech30) shopping cart with one click. Each product has its own designated button, which can be stuck or hung on appliances, cabinets, and anywhere you might want a physical reminder to buy every day necessities. Users receive an alert on their phones once an item is added, so they can change or cancel orders before they’re placed. Amazon Prime members can request an invitation to receive the free device starting Tuesday. It’s unclear when the product will start shipping or how much it will cost for non-Prime subscribers. Among the products you can order through Dash are Bounty paper towels and napkins, Clorox disinfecting wipes, Izze sparkling juice, Cottonelle toilet paper, …

    April 1, 2015 3:58 am
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Sports

  • NZ lose pre-America’s Cup regatta, to challenge decision


    (Reuters) – New Zealand’s America’s Cup challenge suffered another blow on Wednesday with organizers of the next event in Bermuda cancelling a pre-America’s Cup challenger regatta in Auckland that had been seen as crucial to funding of the team. Team New Zealand head Grant Dalton said his organization would appeal the decision to strip Auckland of the event, which would have seen all of the competing syndicates racing in New Zealand shortly before the main regatta in Bermuda in 2017. The America’s Cup Event Authority had said earlier that the majority of the six syndicates had agreed to reduce the size of the boat from the previously agreed AC62 foiling catamarans to the smaller AC45 in order to cut costs. The teams had also voted to concentrate all of the racing in Bermuda, the ACEA said in a statement. Team New Zealand and Italian challengers Luna Rossa have protested at the decision to reduce the …

    April 1, 2015 4:18 am
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World News

  • Intruders raid Turkey AKP office


    Two intruders have entered a district office of the Turkish governing AK Party in Istanbul. The men, who are reported to be armed, burst into the office in the Kartal district on Wednesday morning. Turkish TV broadcast footage of one of the men flying a flag from a window of the building. The incident comes a day after a prosecutor and two gunmen who took him hostage in Istanbul were killed in a shootout with security forces.

    April 1, 2015 4:18 am
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Technology

  • Ori and the Blind Forest review: "a challenging and beautiful journey"


    At first sight you may think that something so beautiful couldn’t possibly have substance. Ori and the Blind Forest is so lovingly drawn, so full of light and colour, so deeply layered with scenic detail, that you suspect the developers will want to take you by the hand to ensure you see it all. To the credit of Moon Studios, the opposite is true. This game may be beautiful, but it is also deadly. Mixing interactive sequences and memory vignettes, the Ghibli-inspired opening sequence introduces us to the eponymous forest spirit Ori and her bear-like caregiver before tearing them apart. The rich artistic style conspires against the player: hazards are not exaggerated and obvious but blend in like natural features, and you’ll likely end up stumbling into a cluster of deadly spiky growths as you stumble into a nettle patch in the garden of your childhood home. From the start precision and attention to detail …

    April 1, 2015 3:17 am
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Science

  • Using Twitter to probe political polarization


    Related images(click to enlarge) We’d like to believe that our opinions are nuanced, balanced, high-minded, wise and above all, unique, but alas they are not — or so says Twitter. Most often, those we engage with on the popular social media site are like-minded, and the ensuing electronic maelstrom of 140-character missives most often serves to reinforce, pulling us and them further along in the direction we were already trending toward — so that at the end of the day, we all tweet to the converted. All that sound and fury can signify something, however: researchers at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid in Spain have recently developed a model to detect the extent to which a conversation on Twitter — and thus the actual offline argument and political climate — is polarized. According to the researchers, a group is “perfectly polarized” on a given topic when it has been divided into two groups of the same …

    April 1, 2015 3:38 am
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Health

  • Five U.S. health workers released after Ebola monitoring in Nebraska


    (Reuters) – Five U.S. healthcare workers who underwent monitoring at a Nebraska medical center after possible exposure to the Ebola virus in West Africa have completed their quarantine periods and were symptom-free, the hospital said on Tuesday. The workers underwent monitoring for 21 days at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha after participating in a mission to Sierra Leone where a colleague tested positive for Ebola. Four of the individuals have since left the area and the fifth, who had an unrelated cardiac issue while jogging near the facility over the weekend, has been discharged and would soon leave the city, the hospital said on its Twitter account. More than 10,300 people have died in West Africa over the last year from the worst detected outbreak of Ebola, which has plagued Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, World Health Organization figures show. (Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Editing by Hugh Lawson)

    April 1, 2015 3:38 am
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Entertainment

  • Keira Knightley asks the most important questions on behalf of women in film


    More: Why Keira Knightley said no to airbrushing Whether she’s going topless for the sake of showing her gorgeously unPhotoshopped body or opening up about her struggles with neuroses, the actress isn’t afraid to get candid about important issues affecting people today. But maybe most significant is her vocalization of the need for a serious equality movement within the film industry. More: Celebrity baby calendar 2015 “I don’t know what happened through the ’80s, ’90s, and ’00s that took feminism off the table, that made it something that women weren’t supposed to identify with and were supposed to be ashamed of,” Knightley said in a recent interview for Violet magazine. “Feminism is about the fight for equality between the sexes, with equal respect, equal pay, and equal opportunity. At the moment we are still a long way off that.” The actress also added in a few spot-on questions about what we’re not seeing enough of in …

    April 1, 2015 3:58 am
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Editorial

  • How do you solve a problem like the Clintons?


    Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks at an event hosted by the Center for American Progress (CAP) and the America Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), Monday, March 23, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais) This being the 50th anniversary of the film “The Sound of Music,” please permit me a poor adaptation of a few of its song lyrics, which fit in nicely with our current political climate. How do you solve a problem like the Clintons? Their incessant vacuuming of cash and skirting (no pun intended) of laws and regulations would place lesser mortals in danger of prison, yet the Clintons walk free, their money-making careers booming. ADVERTISEMENT ADVERTISEMENT “Dough, we fear, we need more, dear ‘Ray,’ the name of a Clinton foe Me, a name that fits myself Fah, as far from law I run So, I say when bending laws La, a shrug to follow so …

    March 31, 2015 7:35 pm
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Odd News

  • Painting in Dutch royal collection was Nazi loot: official report


    AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – The Dutch Royal Family owns a painting by a Dutch master that was looted during by the Nazis during Germany’s occupation of the Netherlands in World War Two, according to a report published on Tuesday. “One painting was found where there were indications of involuntary loss of possession during the German occupation,” the government said in a statement after an inquiry commissioned by the Royal Family that examined tens of thousands of paintings in the Royal Collection. Officials had contacted the heirs of the original owner, who was not named, to arrange the return of “The Hague Forest with a View of Huis ten Bosch Palace”, by the 17th century painter Joris van der Haagen. The work was bought for the Royal Collection by Queen Juliana, grandmother of reigning King Willem-Alexander. The inquiry found that another painting in the collection, “Landscape with St. Hubert”, whose provenance had been regarded as doubtful, was …

    March 31, 2015 11:29 am
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