Friday, October 30, 2009

In the News: Oct-30

Wordle: In the News: Oct-30

Obama lifts U.S. entry ban for those with HIV - 30 Oct 2009 at 1:44pm - President Obama said Friday the U.S. will overturn a 20-year-old U.S. travel ban against people with HIV early next year.

Ottawa's Omar Khadr legal costs top $1.3M: report - 30 Oct 2009 at 2:21pm - The Canadian government has spent more than $1.3 million in its legal fight against Omar Khadr, according to a published report Friday.

White House backs Clinton's Pakistan remarks - 30 Oct 2009 at 1:18pm - WASHINGTON -- The White House is standing behind Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's blunt suggestion that Pakistani officials know where top terrorists are hiding.

Intelligence spending rises again to $49.8 billion - 30 Oct 2009 at 11:15am - WASHINGTON -- U.S. spy agencies spent $49.8 billion in fiscal year 2009, $2 billion more than in 2008 and the second such multibillion-dollar increase in as many years.

Thought for the day:
Idealism is fine, but as it approaches reality the cost becomes prohibitive. -William F. Buckley Jr.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

In the News: Oct-29

Wordle: In the News: Oct-29

Feds: Chinese drywall reports still inconclusive - 29 Oct 2009 at 2:41pm - WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Federal studies released Thursday cannot yet definitively link imported Chinese drywall to health problems or corrosion of pipes and wires that thousands of U.S. homeowners have been reporting for nearly a year.

House unveils $894 billion healthcare bill - 29 Oct 2009 at 2:36pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives unveiled a broad healthcare overhaul on Thursday that would transform the insurance market, create a government-run insurance plan and levy new taxes on the rich.

Obama restores private intel board's key power - 29 Oct 2009 at 11:59am - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has restored an independent intelligence advisory board's authority to tell the attorney general if it thinks an intelligence agency has broken the law.

Recession unofficially ends as economy grows 3.5 percent - 29 Oct 2009 at 9:22am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. economy grew in the third quarter for the first time in a year, beating market expectations, as consumer spending and new home-building rebounded, signaling the end of the worst recession in 70 years.

U.N. condemns Cuba embargo by U.S. - 29 Oct 2009 at 7:59am - The United States found itself up against virtually the entire world Wednesday as country after country at the United Nations denounced the nearly 50-year-old trade embargo against Cuba, which the island government says is as strong as ever under President Barack Obama.

Iran wants big changes to draft atom deal with powers - 29 Oct 2009 at 7:22am - TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran will seek major revisions to a U.N.-draft nuclear fuel deal, including shipping abroad its low-enriched uranium (LEU) in stages rather than all at once, a pro-government newspaper reported on Thursday.

Obama considering scaled-down Afghan war plan - 29 Oct 2009 at 6:47am - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama is considering a scaled-down version of the war plan advanced by his top Afghanistan commander, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, U.S. officials say.

Thought for the day:
An economist is an expert who will know tommorrow why the things he predicted yesterday didn't happen today. -Laurence J. Peter (1919 - 1988)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

In the News: Oct-28

Wordle: In the News: Oct-28

House Democrats prepare to unveil health bill - 28 Oct 2009 at 1:56pm - House Democrats have all but finalized a sweeping health care bill that would reshape the medical system, requiring nearly everyone to purchase coverage and creating a new government insurance plan for the middle class.

New home sales drop, durable goods orders up - 28 Oct 2009 at 2:03pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Sales of new U.S. homes unexpectedly tumbled in September, their first drop in six months, underscoring the hazards to an economic recovery even as businesses appeared to be stepping up investment.

Military suicides rise in 2008 - 28 Oct 2009 at 8:49am - More Canadian soldiers killed themselves in 2008 than the year before, but the overall suicide rate has remained steady throughout the war in Afghanistan, says a military study.

Thought for the day:
Now and then an innocent man is sent to the legislature. -Kin Hubbard (1868 - 1930)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

In the News: Oct-27

Wordle: In the News: Oct-27

Cuomo sets healthcare reimbursement reform - 27 Oct 2009 at 12:38pm - NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday the creation of a nationwide database to help set health care reimbursement rates, benefiting patients who use doctors outside their insurers' networks and capping an industrywide probe.

Eight U.S. troops killed in Afghan bomb attacks - 27 Oct 2009 at 10:28am - KABUL (Reuters) - Eight U.S. service members working for the NATO-led force and one Afghan civilian were killed in multiple bomb attacks in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday, the alliance said in a statement.

Thought for the day:
Censorship, like charity, should begin at home; but, unlike charity, it should end there. -Clare Booth Luce (1903 - 1987)

Monday, October 26, 2009

In the News: Oct-26

Wordle: In the News: Oct-26

Gates: injured troops face too much bureaucracy - 26 Oct 2009 at 2:18pm - WASHINGTON -- Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Monday that troops injured in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan continue to face too many bureaucratic hurdles.

Report: FBI not reviewing all of its evidence - 26 Oct 2009 at 1:42pm - WASHINGTON -- An inspector general has found the FBI is still not reviewing reams of evidence collected in counterterrorism cases, and still needs more translators.

Kerry: US can't narrow Afghanistan mission - 26 Oct 2009 at 1:14pm - WASHINGTON -- Sen. John Kerry warns that a major U.S. troop pullout could trigger civil war in Afghanistan, adding that a small-scale counterterror campaign is not an alternative to the broader military campaign under way.

3 DEA agents killed in Afghan crash - 26 Oct 2009 at 10:44am - WASHINGTON -- A U.S. official says three Drug Enforcement Administration agents were killed Monday when a U.S. military helicopter went down in the west of Afghanistan.

Thought for the day:
The worst sin toward our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them: that's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

In the News: Oct-15

Wordle: In the News: Oct-15

Republicans fail to block transfer of detainees - 15 Oct 2009 at 1:36pm - WASHINGTON -- Republicans in the House have lost a bid to block the transfer of any detainees held at the Guantanamo Bay prison to the United States.

Arctic to be ice-free in summer in 20 years: scientist - 15 Oct 2009 at 8:52am - LONDON (Reuters) - Global warming will leave the Arctic Ocean ice-free during the summer within 20 years, raising sea levels and harming wildlife such as seals and polar bears, a leading British polar scientist said on Thursday.

Khadr's family ties to al-Qaeda worry U.S.: UN official - 15 Oct 2009 at 7:30am - A top UN official says the United States is leery of freeing Canadian Omar Khadr from Guantanamo Bay for fear he will return to al-Qaeda once he is released.

Thought for the day:
If you can't bite, don't show your teeth. -Yiddish Proverb

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

In the News: Oct-14

Wordle: In the News: Oct-14

VA to ease way for vets to get stress disability - 14 Oct 2009 at 2:34pm - WASHINGTON -- Female soldiers and others serving in dangerous roles behind the front lines in Iraq and Afghanistan have long complained it was hard to prove their combat experience when applying for disability for post-traumatic stress disorder.

Math tests: Fourth-grader progress stalls - 14 Oct 2009 at 12:11pm - WASHINGTON -- After two decades of slow and steady progress in math, U.S. fourth-graders made no improvement over 2007, according to nationwide test scores released Wednesday.

Afghan mission chief wants more U.S. troops - 14 Oct 2009 at 11:45am - The top military commander in Afghanistan is expected to tell U.S. President Barack Obama that up to 80,000 more troops should be deployed to the war-torn country.

Abu Ghraib appeal centers on military confusion - 14 Oct 2009 at 11:32am - WASHINGTON -- A female soldier who was photographed at Abu Ghraib prison giving a smiling "thumbs-up" beside a pyramid of naked detainees says she hopes her appeal to the military's highest court will exonerate all whose reputations were tarnished by the scandal.

Iraq puts 2004-08 death toll at over 85,000 - 14 Oct 2009 at 10:03am - Iraq says 85,694 people lost their lives in the country's violence from 2004-08, the first official report by the government on the death toll since the war began with the United States invasion.

N.B. police change stun-gun policy - 14 Oct 2009 at 8:02am - New Brunswick police forces are adopting new guidelines on using stun guns that call for officers not to aim for the chest.

Brown confirms Afghan troops boost - 14 Oct 2009 at 9:20am - British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced that he will be sending 500 more troops to Afghanistan.

Thought(s) for the day:
You can only be young once. But you can always be immature. -Dave Barry (1947 - )
My fellow Americans, I am pleased to tell you I just signed legislation which outlaws Russia forever. The bombing begins in five minutes. -Ronald Reagan (1911 - 2004)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

In the News: Oct-13

Wordle: In the News: Oct-13

Pentagon: recruiting last year was best since 1973 - 13 Oct 2009 at 2:26pm - WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon says it has just finished the best recruiting year since the all-volunteer military was established in 1973.

Palestinians souring on Obama: document - 13 Oct 2009 at 2:17pm - An internal document circulating among members of the party of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the hopes they had placed in U.S. President Barack Obama "have evaporated."

Lawyers seek order to release Kuwaiti at Guantanamo - 13 Oct 2009 at 12:15pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Lawyers for a Kuwaiti held at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, Tuesday asked the judge who ordered him freed to force the Obama administration to release him.

NY top court to consider gay marriage benefits - 13 Oct 2009 at 6:41am - ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York's top court is set to hear arguments against providing government benefits to same sex couples married in Canada or other jurisdictions where such marriages are legal.

US wants bunker-buster fast, denies Iran is reason - 13 Oct 2009 at 6:35am - WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon is speeding up delivery of a colossal bomb designed to destroy hidden weapons bunkers buried underground and shielded by 10,000 pounds of reinforced concrete.

Thought for the day:
The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern. Every class is unfit to govern. -Lord Acton, Letter to Mary Gladstone, 1881

Friday, October 02, 2009

In the News: Oct-02

Wordle: In the News: Oct-02

U.S. Sept non-farm payrolls fall, jobless rate up - 2 Oct 2009 at 9:16am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. employers cut a deeper-than-expected 263,000 jobs in September, lifting the unemployment rate to 9.8 percent, according to a government report on Friday that fueled fears the weak labor market could undermine economic recovery.

Iran nuclear talks with U.S. and allies eases tension - 2 Oct 2009 at 6:13am - GENEVA (Reuters) - Talks between Iran and six major powers over Tehran's nuclear program on Thursday opened the door to improved relations as Iran agreed to allow U.N. inspectors into a newly disclosed uranium enrichment plant.

Thought for the day:
Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society. -Mark Twain (1835 - 1910))

Thursday, October 01, 2009

In the News: Oct-01

Wordle: In the News: Oct-01

Iraq says Sept. civilian deaths lowest since war began - 1 Oct 2009 at 12:19pm - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The number of civilians killed in Iraq in September fell to 125, the lowest level since the 2003 U.S. invasion, according to figures from Iraq's Health Ministry released on Thursday.

Judge orders release of Cheney interview with FBI - 1 Oct 2009 at 11:37am - WASHINGTON -- A federal judge ruled Thursday that the FBI must publicly reveal much of its interview with former Vice President Dick Cheney during the investigation into who leaked the identity of a CIA operative.

Council split complicates Obama's Afghan decision - 1 Oct 2009 at 9:46am - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama is confronting a split among his closest advisers on Afghanistan, reflecting divisions in his own party over whether to send in thousands more U.S. troops and complicating his efforts to adopt a war policy he can sell to a public grown weary of the 8-year-old conflict.

EPA aims to cut emissions at factories, power plants - 1 Oct 2009 at 7:42am - For the first time, the federal government plans to restrict greenhouse-gas emissions from factories, power plants and other industrial facilities under a proposal revealed Wednesday. The proposed rule requires new facilities and those undergoing major maintenance to limit their greenhouse-gas emissions using the "best available" technology. That might include energy-efficiency steps or equipment under development to capture greenhouse gases and funnel them into storage.

Provide details on Taliban, Pakistan tells U.S - 1 Oct 2009 at 7:24am - ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - The United States should provide information about top militants in Pakistan, a government minister said on Thursday, as Washington stepped up pressure on Islamabad to go after Taliban leaders.

At least 6 Afghan civilians die in airstrike - 1 Oct 2009 at 7:04am - An airstrike on a compound in southwestern Afghanistan killed at least six civilians, a local tribal leader said Thursday, after the U.S. military reported that ground forces were coming under fire from inside the residence and called in aircraft. Civilian deaths have been a source of friction between President Hamid Karzai and U.S. military commanders and have infuriated many ordinary Afghans, who claim international soldiers use heavy-handed tactics.

Funny headline of the day: "U.S. demands concrete steps from Iran"

Thought for the day:
The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread. -Anatole France (1844 - 1924)