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Nov 20

U.S. February budget deficit is largest on record

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U.S. February budget deficit is largest on record
Posted on Tuesday, November 20, 2018 in Uncategorized

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The U.S. Treasury Department reported the government posted a monthly budget deficit of US$222.5 billion in February, the largest monthly deficit ever recorded. The February deficit, announced on Thursday, outstripped the February revenue gain of $110 billion.

The report comes at a time when the White House and both national political parties are under extreme pressure to reduce the deficit as well as the total U.S. debt. There is no agreement on how to reduce spending and increase government revenue, and both Democratic and Republican measures have been voted down.

Factors contributing to the February 2011 deficit compared to that of February 2010 included a 69% reduction in corporate tax receipts, and an increase of 29% in interest payments due on the U.S. debt. The government also spent more than in the previous February on entitlement programs, including an increase of 11% on Medicare. Government measures, such as an extension of unemployment insurance benefits, cuts in the payroll tax and some business tax reductions also contributed to the deficit.

The White House has predicted that the U.S. budget deficit will reach $1.6 trillion this year and then fall to $1.1 trillion in 2012. Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner, has warned that by April 15 of this year, the U.S. is likely to reach its $14.3 trillion borrowing limit.

Nov 20

US federal judge and Florida judge clash over Scientology wrongful death case

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US federal judge and Florida judge clash over Scientology wrongful death case
Posted on Tuesday, November 20, 2018 in Uncategorized

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A United States federal court judge and Florida state court judge are enmeshed in a conflict against each other regarding a wrongful death lawsuit involving Scientology.

A federal judge for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Steven Douglas Merryday, ordered Pinellas County Senior Circuit Judge Robert E. Beach not to intervene regarding appearance of an attorney in a federal court case involving Scientology. Lawyer Kennan Dandar is representing the estate of Kyle Thomas Brennan in a wrongful death claim against the Scientology organization.

The suit asserts that members of the Scientology organization, including the father of Brennan, removed access to the deceased’s anti-depression medication, and provided him with means to utilize a loaded gun. Brennan had been staying with his father for a week prior to his death. Police in Clearwater, Florida investigated the 2007 death of Brennan, and determined it was a suicide. Kyle Brennan was himself not a member of Scientology. The lawsuit, filed in 2009, was filed by Brennan’s mother on behalf of her son’s estate. Named as defendants in the lawsuit include the Scientology organization, its subdivision the Flag Service Organization, twin sister of Scientology leader David Miscavige – Denise Gentile, and her husband Gerald Gentile.

Attorney Dandar had previously represented the estate of Lisa McPherson in a separate civil wrongful death claim against the Scientology organization. After being under the care of members of the Scientology organization for 17 days, McPherson died in Clearwater in 1995. The wrongful death suit claimed that Scientology officials permitted McPherson to deteriorate to a dehydrated state, where her condition was such that she did not have the energy to fend off cockroaches from biting her skin.

Scientology management settled the McPherson wrongful death case in 2004; lawyers representing the organization stated the settlement included a confidential arrangement with Dandar to never again represent clients in lawsuits against Scientology entities. The settlement included an agreement that both sides would never speak again about the case; California lawyer Ford Greene commented, “The church bought silence.” The Scientology organization had also filed a countersuit against the estate of Lisa McPherson, and named Dandar a party to that lawsuit. The organization claimed Dandar had inappropriately tried to add the head of Scientology David Miscavige as a party to the wrongful death lawsuit.

I’m stuck in the middle of two courts.

Scientology legal representatives requested Judge Beach to see to it that Dandar abide by the secret settlement agreement, and Beach subsequently issued an order in June 2009 that Dandar be removed from the Brennan wrongful death case. Dandar faced sanctions from Judge Beach including suspension of Dandar’s license to practice law, a US$130,000 judgement to be given to the Scientology organization, and a fine of $1,000 per day. Judge Beach ruled that all money from the sanctions imposed against Dandar – were to go directly to the Scientology organization. The Tampa Tribune noted that Judge Breach made his ruling, “in an inexplicably closed hearing from which Beach tossed a St. Petersburg Times reporter”.

Faced with these possible sanctions, Dandar filed an “involuntary” motion to withdraw from the Brennan wrongful death case in federal court, but Judge Merryday denied this request. Dandar stated to The Tampa Tribune, “I’m stuck in the middle of two courts.”

D. Wallace Pope, a lawyer for the Scientology organization, stated that he wished to show evidence regarding the settlement in the McPherson wrongful death case. However, Judge Merryday emphasized his main issue was determining whether or not Dandar was being penalized for obeying the federal court’s order denying his request to be withdrawn from the Brennan wrongful death case. Judge Merryday stated he would prevent the Scientology organization along with Judge Beach from punishing Dandar for representing his client in US federal court. Merryday stated Beach had attempted to usurp control outside of his jurisdiction, thereby “aggressively” interferring with the US federal court process through imposing sanctions on Dandar.

Merryday has served as a US federal judge based in Tampa, Florida since 1992. The St. Petersburg Times noted that Judge Merryday, “has presided over some of the region’s most noteworthy cases.” Judge Merryday’s court order creating an injunction against Beach was 29-pages long, and criticized the “stunning severity” of Beach’s sanctions imposed on Dandar. Merryday explained that the federal court needed to “act in defense of the (federal) court’s jurisdiction”, due to Beach’s actions. Referencing Judge Beach, Merryday wrote in his court order, “A judge should not undertake, directly or indirectly, overtly or through a surrogate, to compel an act by another judge, especially in a different jurisdiction.”

Judge Merryday stated to Scientology lawyers, “have forced my hand on this issue.” Merryday stated to Scientology lawyer, Robert Potter, “I don’t like being put in this position. When people start to squeeze, other people can squeeze back.” Potter asked him to seal the proceedings from public view, and Judge Merryday responded, “I’m not going to be entering any seals unless I see a lawful reason, and I can’t even see the beginning of a reason”. Merryday stated he would not allow his court to be influenced by “some circuit judge somewhere who appears for all I can tell to have sealed something for some unknown reason”.

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Judge Beach responded to Judge Merryday’s injunction which “permanently enjoined” him from imposing sanctions on Dandar, by filing a motion on Thursday in federal court in Tampa. Beach asked Merryday to rescind his order so that he may recuse himself from acting as a judge on the Scientology case related to Dandar. Beach’s motion argued that he was denied due process because he was not given notice by Merryday of the hearing which occurred before Merryday issued his ruling. In addition, Beach asserted Merryday did not have power to issue the ruling restricting him from sanctioning Dandar, because Beach was not a party to the Brennan wrongful death case, and Merryday lacked authority to restrict powers of a judge from outside his federal court jurisdiction. In response, Judge Merryday has scheduled a hearing for October 12 in federal court to hear state court judge Beach.

Martin Errorl Rice is an attorney in St. Petersburg, Florida who represented Beach in the motion before the US federal court. Rice stated his client’s motivation in requesting the ruling by Judge Merryday be rescinded was to allow Beach to recuse from the Scientology case. Rice told the St. Petersburg Times that his client’s conflict with the US federal court has “cast kind of a cloud” over Beach’s position in the Scientology case.

Stetson University College of Law constitutional law professor Michael Allen analyzed the clash between the US judge and Florida judge for The Tampa Tribune. Allen observed that it was “very, very rare” for a US federal judge to order a state judge. He noted that a 1793 federal law contravenes such orders – except in “extraordinarily narrow” cases where the federal judges are permitted to create rulings in order to safeguard the jurisdiction of their federal court proceedings.

Nov 19

At least fifteen dead after landslide in Indonesia

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At least fifteen dead after landslide in Indonesia
Posted on Monday, November 19, 2018 in Uncategorized

Thursday, February 25, 2010

At least fifteen people have been killed as the result of a landslide which occurred in Indonesia on Tuesday. According to BBC News Online, at least sixteen were killed. It is thought that up to seventy people were killed as a result of the landslide, which occurred in a village near to the city of Bandung.

At one point, villagers attempted to dig out surviving victims from the rocks and mud by using their bare hands, as rescue efforts were suspended temporarily due to heavy rain, before recommencing after lifting equipment arrived. At least sixteen dead bodies have been recovered by Wednesday. Roughly five hundred people are contributing to the search and rescue.

Priyadi Kardono, spokesperson for the Disaster Management Agency, stated: “We’ve found fifteen bodies so far and estimate that there are up to 70 people still missing.” He also commented that fifteen other people had been injured, of which two have been hospitalised.

Nov 16

NCAA Football: Grambling State legend Eddie Robinson dies

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NCAA Football: Grambling State legend Eddie Robinson dies
Posted on Friday, November 16, 2018 in Uncategorized

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Former Grambling State head coach Eddie Robinson died Tuesday night, after a lengthy fight with Alzheimer’s disease. Robinson was diagnosed with the disease in 1997, and spent the last year in a nursing home.

Eddie Robinson was one of the giants in coaching. He was a great football coach and person who made tremendous contributions to our profession. He made a positive impact on the lives of thousands of young people. He was a great ambassador for Grambling and represented his school with pride, class and commitment

Robinson passed, not long after being admitted to Lincoln General Hospital in Ruston, La., as reported by former Grambling State quarterback and Super Bowl MVP, Doug Williams. Williams added, “He’d been fighting that battle for a long time, It was one of the many he fought in his lifetime. We all know it’s coming. But that’s Eddie Robinson. Eddie Robinson is not supposed to go. But when you look back at it, there’s lot of joy in it too. I don’t think none of us have to worry about where he’s going to be from now on. He is a gate keeper.”

The following is a statement from Ms. Doris Robinson, wife of Eddie Robinson: “The many expressions of support, sympathy, and gratitude that we have received from all over the country have been overwhelming. I truly appreciate each and every person, so many of whom we have never met, who has said such kind and inspiring words about Eddie, his legacy, and our family. Our love and admiration for Eddie were unyielding, as was Eddie’s for his immediate family and his extended Grambling family. Eddie was the consummate husband, father, teacher, leader, role model, and, most of all, the greatest of Americans. Words cannot express the loneliness that I will feel without my beloved Eddie. However, I realize, and the immediate family realizes, the greatness that Eddie contributed to our society. He will forever fill our hearts, minds, and souls.”

Robinson’s career highlights included 57 years as head coach at Grambling State University, 408 victories, 45 winning seasons, 17 Southwestern Conference Championships, and over 200 players sent into the NFL. Funeral services will be held on Wednesday, April 11, beginning at 11:00 a.m. in the Assembly Center on the campus of Grambling State University (across from Robinson Stadium). Internment will be at Memorial Gardens in Grambling, La.

Nov 16
0

Florida wins BCS National Championship Game over Oklahoma

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Florida wins BCS National Championship Game over Oklahoma
Posted on Friday, November 16, 2018 in Uncategorized

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Florida Gators defeated the Oklahoma Sooners by a score of 24 to 14 last night’s FedEx BCS National Championship Game to win the Division I title of the National Collegiate Athletic Association‘s American college football league. Florida, ranked Number 1 in the nation, were led by Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Tim Tebow. “I promised the guys that I would go out and play with all my heart. I was so motivated tonight,” said Tebow. They were matched up against a Number 2 ranked Oklahoma team with a powerful offense, including this year’s Heisman Trophy winner, quarterback Sam Bradford. The game took place at a sold-out Dolphin Stadium in Miami, as a stadium record 78,468 fans attended the match.

Both team’s defensed dominated each others’ offenses in the first half, forcing a 7 to 7 score when halftime came against a Florida offense that averaged 54 points a game and an Oklahoma offense that averaged 40 points. In total, both team’s defenses had 4 interceptions, 2 for Florida and 2 for Oklahoma. Florida’s defense stopped Oklahoma twice during a goal line stand, stopping them on a fourth-down rush once, and a forced interception out of the hands of Oklahoma wide receiver Juaquin Iglesias by Florida’s Ahmad Black.

On the offensive side of the ball, Florida was led by Tebow. Although throwing 2 interceptions, Tebow completed 18 put of 30 passes for 2 touchdowns, as well as rushed 22 times for over 100 yards. Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford helped the Sooners offense through the air, completing 26 out of 41 passes for 256 yards and 2 passing touchdowns, but also throwing two interceptions. In the fourth quarter, Tebow completed a key 4-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver David Nelson, making the score 24 to 14 and putting the game out of reach for Oklahoma.

Some college fans believe that Florida did not rightly win the national championship, though. Fans of the Utah Utes believed that their undefeated team should have at least earned a spot in the game against Oklahoma or Florida’s one-loss teams. Fans of the USC Trojans and the Texas Longhorns also believed that the teams could have earned a spot in the game, due to their similar records. On the matter, Florida head coach Urban Meyer said “This is one of the best teams in college football history. Let someone else worry about all that. The Gators are No.1.”

On the game, Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops commented “In the end, I’ll be glad to try again next year. If that’s the biggest burden I have to bear in my life, I’m a pretty lucky guy.” Tim Tebow, in a post-game interview, said “I was already motivated for a national championship game. But you know, there was some trash talking going on, and it just gets me going during the game.” In a losing effort, Sam Bradford commented “In the first half, we had opportunities that we didn’t take advantage of. In the second half, when we needed to make the plays, we just couldn’t do it.”

Nov 15
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Non-profit ACORN plans to shut down

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Non-profit ACORN plans to shut down
Posted on Thursday, November 15, 2018 in Uncategorized

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

File:ACORN logo.png

The US community organizing group Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) will end its operations due to dwindling funds. The group said in a statement that it would close most of its field offices by April 1.

The heads of the organization said in a joint statement that “ACORN’s members have a great deal to be proud of—from promoting homeownership to helping rebuild New Orleans, from raising wages to winning safer streets, from training community leaders to promoting voter participation—ACORN members have worked hard to create stronger communities, a more inclusive democracy, and a more just nation.”

The group, founded in 1970, played a prominent role in the 2008 US presidential elections, as it conducted many voter registration drives and fundraising for then-Senator Barack Obama, among other Democratic candidates. The organization first became scrutinized during the 2006 mid-term elections, when some of its employees were accused of voter fraud. Matters got worse in 2009 after an undercover video revealed two of its employees giving advice on how to set up a prostitution ring and commit tax fraud.

Nov 14
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Protect Your Company’s Property &Amp; Secrets With Business Security In Sedalia

Posted on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 in Security

byAlma Abell

Protecting your company during the night could save you a lot of time, money and headaches. Not only are there thieves out there who are looking to steal anything of value, but there are corporate spies and other desperate people. Some may be in your employ and would love to steal your ideas or products and sell them as their own. The first step in protecting your hard earned company is the installation of Security Systems in Pettis County. A simple security system can protect the building from the more common attempts of theft such as break-ins and acts of vandalism like broken windows.

Higher security requirements demand a team of experts dedicated to Business Security in Sedalia, and companies like Nightwatch Security and Telephone, LLC make certain the best professionals are always available. These experts can take your requirements, your property’s unique layout and the needs of your staff and create a system that is designed for your specific security concerns. For example, if your company has certain areas that only specific employees are allowed into, these experts could design a key card system to restrict that access. Once that system is in place, you would have authority over who possesses entry cards and control over when those cards are removed from the system.

Other security options include video surveillance systems, security recordings and even still photo snapshots to monitor the flow of traffic. Video and picture surveillance creates a physical record of who comes and goes, which provides your company another key to controlling any secrets your business may need to protect. However, not all Business Security in Sedalia is about protecting secrets. Some security concerns are put in place to protect the employees and visitors in the area.

For example, many hospitals have secure rooms that require specific combinations or pass cards for entry. These rooms could be labs where important tests are being run or lounge areas for specific personnel. Blocking these rooms allows the hospital to keep the general public at bay. This protection keeps the employees from being bothered while keeping any unnecessary people away from important equipment.

Nov 14
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Publishers seek injunction against Google Print

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Publishers seek injunction against Google Print
Posted on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 in Uncategorized

Thursday, October 20, 2005

A number of publishers represented by the trade union group Association of American Publishers (AAP) filed an injuction in U.S. District Court in New York on Wednesday to stop Google from moving forward with plans for its Print Library Project.

The current situation between the publishing industry and Google requires that copyright holders notify the search engine if they do not want works to appear on the internet in full by November 1. Where requests by copyright holders exist, the search result will display only a snippet of the text and a link to where users can buy a hard copy. Google denies it is violating U.S. copyright law.

Negotiations broke down when Google rejected a proposal by AAP to use ISBN.

Parties to the injunction want to implement a system where a listing of permissible works and books is populated by the discretion of the publisher or author. By default, all other copyrighted content would be excluded.

Google offers this explanation of how Google Print works:

Just do a search on the Google Print homepage. When we find a book whose content contains a match for your search terms, we’ll link to it in your search results. Click a book title and you’ll see the page of the book that has your search terms, along with other information about the book and “Buy this Book” links to online bookstores (you can view the entirety of public domain books or, for books under copyright, just a few pages or in some cases, only the title’s bibliographic data and brief snippets). You can also search for more information within that specific book and find nearby libraries that have it.

Plaintiffs involved in the case are McGraw-Hill, Pearson PLC, Penguin Group, Simon & Schuster, Inc. and John Wiley & Sons. Recovery of court costs are being sought, but no punitive damages.

Nov 13
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Oil leaking container ship might cause environmental catastrophe

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Oil leaking container ship might cause environmental catastrophe
Posted on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 in Uncategorized

Sunday, January 21, 2007

In the United Kingdom, an anti-pollution operation is under way after the stricken ship MSC Napoli started to leak dangerous heavy fuel oil.

The heavy fuel oil that is leaking from the beached Italian ship is extremely dangerous for the environment. Fear of pollution increased after the ship was further damaged during storms last Thursday. MSC Napoli was beached by Devon coastguards after it suffered heavy structual damage in the gale force storms of Thursday, 18 January 2007, that wreaked havoc across Northern Europe. The ship, which contains 160 containers of hazardous chemical substances, is listing at 35 degrees.

The entire 26-man crew was rescued by navy helicopters Thursday after severe gales. Cracks were found on both sides of the ship, but the current oil leak was not expected.

Around 2,400 containers were carried by the 62,000 tonne ship, some of which contain potentially dangerous hazardous chemicals.

The Coastguards have reported that up to 200 of the containers carrying materials such as perfume and battery acid are loose from the ship and they are looking for missing containers. South African stainless steel producer Columbus Stainless confirmed on Friday that there was at least 1,000 tonnes of nickel on board MSC Napoli.

A hole in the ship flooded the engine room and there’s now fears that the ship will break up. Saturday MSC Napoli was towed to Portland when a ”structural failure” forced the salvage team to beach it. As the storms have continued MSC Napoli has been further damaged.

The authorities have warned people about the pollution, which already has reached the beaches at Devon, but many want to see it on their own. Police have closed Branscombe Beach as more than 20 containers have broken up scattering their contents along the beach.

Sky News reported Sunday that the costs of the accident might be very high as thousands of pounds worth of BMW motorbikes, car parts, empty oak barrels and perfume might get lost in flooding containers.

Nov 13
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Zimbabwe submits to popular pressure: foreign currencies now legal tender

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Zimbabwe submits to popular pressure: foreign currencies now legal tender
Posted on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 in Uncategorized

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Zimbabwe has decided to abandon its currency, the Zimbabwean dollar, in favour of other currencies.

Acting Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa announced today that Zimbabweans will be allowed to make transactions in other currencies along with the local currency. “In line with the prevailing practices by the general public, [the] government is therefore allowing the use of multiple foreign currencies for business transactions alongside the Zimbabwean dollar,” he said, adding that the Zimbabwean dollar will not be removed from circulation and would be used alongside other currencies.

This decision comes during the current period of hyperinflation, which has massively devalued the Zimbabwean dollar. Banknotes up to $100 trillion have been printed, despite the removal of ten zeroes from the currency last summer to try to make transactions easier. The official inflation rate, last updated in July 2008, was 231,000,000% a year, although independent estimates place the number as high as 6.5×10108, or 6.5 quindecillion novemdecillion, percent.

Up to now, only vendors with licenses were legally able to accept foreign currencies, although the practice was widespread — private businesses altogether refuse to accept the unstable Zimbabwean dollar.

Large sections of the workforce, including teachers and doctors, have gone on strike because hyperinflation rapidly renders their wages worthless. Representative groups said salaries, now measured in trillions of dollars, are insufficient to pay for even the bus fare to work.

Zimbabwe also faces other crises, including a cholera epidemic that has claimed the lives of over 3,000 people, according to statistics from the World Health Organisation.

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