Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Poet / publisher Paul Foreman dies. | Haggard & Halloo Publications

paulPaul Foreman, a native of Granbury, Texas, and a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, began his literary career in the winter of 1970 with the publication of Hyperion, a poetry journal co-edited with his wife, poet Foster Robertson, and friend Judy Hogan. In 1971, Foreman, a writer himself, founded Thorp Springs Press (TSP) in Berkeley to provide an outlet for unpublished writers. While Foreman welcomed unsolicited submissions, he sought contributions from writers he admired and respected that might otherwise never make it into print. Foreman initially focused on publishing poetry, fiction, and drama, but over time branched out to publish essays, historical correspondence, and translations. As a Texan, Foreman championed the work of Texas writers and their unique literary sensibilities.

During TSP?s two decades of operation, Foreman relied upon a community of friends and acquaintances from California, Texas, and across the country. This network of authors, small press publishers, and magazine editors helped him sell TSP books to independent bookstores, advertise TSP publications, and discover new writers outside the San Francisco Bay area. Foreman?s dedication to this community lead to his involvement with COSMEP, the Committee of Small Magazine Editors and Publishers, a formal organization of small presses. Foreman presided as Chair of the Committee from September 1978 to late 1979.

Foreman?s biggest success as a publisher came in 1974 with the publication of The Grassman: a Novel by California writer Len Fulton. (Fulton continues to operate his own press, Dustbooks, which publishes The International Directory of Little Magazines and Small Presses as well as other small press publications.) Other notable TSP titles include The New Populism by 1976 Presidential candidate Fred R. Harris, Goliah: a Utopian Essay by Jack London, Letters from the Hill Country: the Correspondence between Rebekah and Lyndon Baines Johnson, and Foreman?s own Sugarland.

In 1976, Foreman made several attempts to get funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and applied to the federal government to declare TSP a non-profit organization. While the press eventually received several thousand dollars from both state and federal agencies, non-profit status was never granted. TSP remained in Berkeley until the spring of 1978 when Foreman and family moved to Austin, Texas. In 1979, Foreman opened the Brazos Book Shop which carried mostly small press publications. In Austin, Foreman continued his involvement in the small press community, staging poetry readings, organizing workshops, and speaking about his work as a writer and small press publisher.

After publishing nearly 100 books and journals, Foreman closed the Brazos Book Shop, and TSP ceased operations during the early 1990s.





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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

humus arbores: candida carnation: Biology Syllabus ? So What

If you?re encountered with biology syllabus assessment in that case he/she really needs to fully grasp the exact objectives to make sure that he/she are able to comprehend the objective. There are 3 well-known objectives concerning learning the field of biology which generally are to have practical knowledge with understanding, ability to actually deal with important information and resolve issues in conjunction with learning experimental skillsets as well as inspections.

The actual Biology Syllabus entails of scientific phenomena specifics hence these particular 3 important objectives are crucial for the main assessment procedure. A few other reasons for assessment are to be capable of making predictions, address issues, manipulate data and locate ideal sources to get knowledge acquisition.

19 December 2012 | Reference and Education


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More Than Meets the Eye About Death, Dying, and Afterlife: Moving ...

?When an event occurs?such as the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut--that gets nationwide attention, it creates a huge, negative pool of energy in the collective consciousness of humanity. People respond with all kinds of emotions form anger at the perpetrator to sympathy for the victims.?

When the media focuses on the perpetrator of a hideous crime it activates the darkness in the minds of others who have considered doing something to gain public attention. No wonder we have similar events cropping up within weeks of such a calamity.

The day after the shooting in Connecticut, an empath friend of mine asked if I was doing okay. She hoped that I wasn?t being sucked in by the energy of grief that was engulfing the nation and being pumped by the media. I assured her that while I had compassion for the families who had lost loved ones in that shooting, I was not overcome with sorrow. It may sound callous or aloof to admit such a thing, but I know that every soul agrees to play a role at an unconscious level and brings about the circumstances it is involved in. So even if children?s bodies and earth lives were destroyed, their forever wise souls were not victims. Perhaps the lesson was part of that soul?s development plan; or the soul of a loved one affected by the tragedy may have learned something valuable from the experience. I?ve learned that it is not wise to intervene in this soul-awakening process.

If I were to add my grief to a situation like this, it would not bring back one of those dear children or adults who died that day. It would make me miserable because I?m sending my energy out where it doesn?t belong. I would be sticking my nose in someone else?s business, but it would not comfort the families. In fact, it would only intensify and prolong their grief. In my book, More Than Meets the Eye, I mentioned how our grieving affects the soul of the departed and keeps them around family members in the Earth plane. If a soul stays too long after departing the body, it can miss its opportunity to crossover. Thus, it can become Earthbound unless someone shows it the way to the light.

So what can we do when something hits the media and garners negative public attention like this? ?Let the dead bury the dead,? as Jesus said.

  1. Send a beam of light and love to the grieving families and the departed souls
  2. Send uplifting cards or letters to the families?anything that will create a lighter feeling surrounding the situation
  3. If you know the family, reach out to them with a meal or other kind gesture.
  4. Envision a portal of light for the departed souls to enter where they can cross over into a blissful afterlife?
  5. Refrain from watching the media coverage and rehashing of the event?
  6. Send a beam of light and love to others who are in darkness or are considering enacting violent crimes against others.?
  7. Pray or meditate on world peace! Studies have shown repeatedly that when a large group of people pray, meditate, or direct their collective energy toward one purpose it has a huge effect. When a group of yogis gathered in Washington to meditate on a mantra the crime rate in that area went down as much as 24.6 percent. ?
?It will make a difference not only in how you feel, it will help souls move on, ease the grief of the families involved, and lessen the possibility of other crimes that tend to follow. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
For more information, you might enjoy reading my book,?More Than Meets the Eye True Stories about Death, Dying, and Afterlife.?Purchase paperback on It's also on Amazon as an e-book for those who have Kindle or Sony Readers. The audio book is now available!


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Over the fiscal cliff: Soft landing or dizzy dive?

President Barack Obama waves as he leaves the podium after speaking about the fiscal cliff in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Friday, Dec. 21, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

President Barack Obama waves as he leaves the podium after speaking about the fiscal cliff in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Friday, Dec. 21, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, speaks to reporters about the fiscal cliff negotiations at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Dec. 21, 2012. Hopes for avoiding the "fiscal cliff" that threatens the U.S. economy fell Friday after fighting among congressional Republicans cast doubt on whether any deal reached with President Barack Obama could win approval ahead of automatic tax increases and deep spending cuts kick in Jan. 1. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, center, departs, with reporters nearby after a House Republicans meeting on Capitol Hill, Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012 in Washington. Confronted with a revolt among the rank and file, House Republicans abruptly put off a vote Thursday night on legislation allowing tax rates to rise for households earning $1 million and up.(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(AP) ? Efforts to save the nation from going over a year-end "fiscal cliff" were in disarray as lawmakers fled the Capitol for their Christmas break. "God only knows" how a deal can be reached now, House Speaker John Boehner declared.

President Barack Obama, on his way out of town himself, insisted a bargain could still be struck before Dec. 31. "Call me a hopeless optimist," he said.

A look at why it's so hard for Republicans and Democrats to compromise on urgent matters of taxes and spending, and what happens if they fail to meet their deadline:



Partly by fate, partly by design, some scary fiscal forces come together at the start of 2013 unless Congress and Obama act to stop them. They include:

? Some $536 billion in tax increases, touching nearly all Americans, because various federal tax cuts and breaks expire at year's end.

? About $110 billion in spending cuts divided equally between the military and most other federal departments. That's about 8 percent of their annual budgets, 9 percent for the Pentagon.

Hitting the national economy with that double whammy of tax increases and spending cuts is what's called going over the "fiscal cliff." If allowed to unfold over 2013, it would lead to recession, a big jump in unemployment and financial market turmoil, economists predict.



If New Year's Day arrives without a deal, the nation shouldn't plunge onto the shoals of recession immediately. There still might be time to engineer a soft landing.

So long as lawmakers and the president appear to be working toward agreement, the tax hikes and spending cuts could mostly be held at bay for a few weeks. Then they could be retroactively repealed once a deal was reached.

The big wild card is the stock market and the nation's financial confidence: Would traders start to panic if Washington appeared unable to reach accord? Would worried consumers and businesses sharply reduce their spending? In what could be a preview, stock prices around the world dropped Friday after House Republican leaders' plan for addressing the fiscal cliff collapsed.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has warned lawmakers that the economy is already suffering from the uncertainty and they shouldn't risk making it worse by blowing past their deadline.



If negotiations between Obama and Congress collapse completely, 2013 looks like a rocky year.

Taxes would jump $2,400 on average for families with incomes of $50,000 to $75,000, according to a study by the non-partisan Tax Policy Center. Because consumers would get less of their paychecks to spend, businesses and jobs would suffer.

At the same time, Americans would feel cuts in government services; some federal workers would be furloughed or laid off, and companies would lose government business. The nation would lose up to 3.4 million jobs, the Congressional Budget Office predicts.

"The consequences of that would be felt by everybody," Bernanke says.



Much of the disagreement surrounds the George W. Bush-era income tax cuts, and whether those rates should be allowed to rise for the nation's wealthiest taxpayers. Both political parties say they want to protect the middle-class from tax increases.

Several tax breaks begun in 2009 to stimulate the economy by aiding low- and middle-income families are also set to expire Jan. 1. The alternative minimum tax would expand to catch 28 million more taxpayers, with an average increase of $3,700 a year. Taxes on investments would rise, too. More deaths would be covered by the federal estate tax, and the rate climbs from 35 percent to 55 percent. Some corporate tax breaks would end.

The temporary Social Security payroll tax cut also is due to expire. That tax break for most Americans seems likely to end even if a fiscal cliff deal is reached, now that Obama has backed down from his call to prolong it as an economic stimulus.



If the nation goes over the fiscal cliff, budget cuts of 8 or 9 percent would hit most of the federal government, touching all sorts of things from agriculture to law enforcement and the military to weather forecasting. A few areas, such as Social Security benefits, Veterans Affairs and some programs for the poor, are exempt.



All sorts of stuff could get wrapped up in the fiscal cliff deal-making. A sampling:

? Some 2 million jobless Americans may lose their federal unemployment aid. Obama wants to continue the benefits extension as part of the deal; Republicans say it's too costly.

? Social Security recipients might see their checks grow more slowly. As part of a possible deal, Obama and Republican leaders want to change the way cost-of-living adjustments are calculated, which would mean smaller checks over the years for retirees who get Social Security, veterans' benefits or government pensions.

? The price of milk could double. If Congress doesn't provide a fix for expiring dairy price supports before Jan. 1, milk-drinking families could feel the pinch. One scenario is to attach a farm bill extension to the fiscal cliff legislation ? if a compromise is reached in time.

? Millions of taxpayers who want to file their 2012 returns before mid-March will be held up while they wait to see if Congress comes through with a deal to stop the alternative minimum tax from hitting more people.



In theory, Congress and Obama could just say no to the fiscal cliff, by extending all the tax cuts and overturning the automatic spending reductions in current law. But both Republicans and Democrats agree it's time to take steps to put the nation on a path away from a future of crippling debt.

Indeed, the automatic spending cuts set for January were created as a last-ditch effort to force Congress to deal with the debt problem.

If Washington bypassed the fiscal cliff, the next crisis would be just around the corner, in late February or early March, when the government reaches a $16.4 trillion ceiling on the amount of money it can borrow.

Boehner says Republicans won't go along with raising the limit on government borrowing unless the increase is matched by spending cuts to help attack the long-term debt problem. Failing to raise the debt ceiling could lead to a first-ever U.S. default that would roil the financial markets and shake worldwide confidence in the United States.

To avoid that scenario, Obama and Boehner are trying to wrap a debt limit agreement into the fiscal cliff negotiations.



They're at loggerheads over some big questions.

Obama says any deal must include higher taxes for the wealthiest Americans. Many House Republicans oppose raising anyone's tax rates. Boehner tried to get the House to vote for higher taxes only on incomes above $1 million but dropped the effort when it became clear he didn't have the votes.

Republicans also insist on deeper spending cuts than Democrats want to make. And they want to bring the nation's long-term debt under control by significantly curtailing the growth of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security ? changes that many Democrats oppose.

Obama, meanwhile, wants more temporary economic "stimulus" spending to help speed up a sluggish recovery. Republicans say the nation can't afford it.



Seems like they could just make nice, shake hands and split their differences, right?

But there's a reason neither side wants to give ground. The two parties represent a divided and inconsistent America. True, Obama just won re-election. But voters also chose a Republican majority in the House.

Republican and Democrats alike say they are doing what the voters back home want.

Neither side has a clear advantage in public opinion. In an Associated Press-GfK poll, 43 percent said they trust the Democrats more to manage the federal budget deficit and 40 percent preferred the Republicans. There's a similar split on who's more trusted with taxes.

About half of Americans support higher taxes for the wealthy, the poll says, and about 10 percent want tax increases all around. Still, almost half say cutting government services, not raising taxes, should be the main focus of lawmakers as they try to balance the budget.

When asked about specific budget cuts being discussed in Washington, few Americans express support for them.



Time for deal-making is short, thanks to the holiday and congressional calendars. Some key dates for averting the fiscal cliff:

? Lawmakers aren't expected to return to the Capitol until after Christmas, leaving less than a week to vote on a compromise before year's end.

? Obama and his family also left town for a Christmas vacation in Hawaii. The president said because the fiscal cliff was still unresolved, he would return to Washington this week.

? If lawmakers reach Dec. 31 without a deal, some economists worry that the financial markets might swoon.

? The current Congress is in session only through noon Eastern time on Jan. 3. After that, a newly elected Congress with 13 new senators and 82 new House members would inherit the problem.


Associated Press writers Jim Kuhnhenn, Alan Fram and Andrew Taylor and Director of Polling Jennifer Agiesta contributed to this report.


Follow Connie Cass on Twitter:

Associated Press


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NY surfer who survived Sandy drowns in Puerto Rico

(AP) ? The Belle Harbor section of the Rockaways in New York where so many heroes emerged during Superstorm Sandy has lost one of them to a tragic surfing death in Puerto Rico.

Friends of 23-year-old Dylan Smith and his family expressed sorrow Monday that someone who saved so many lives during the October storm could lose his own on vacation. A local funeral parlor said funeral arrangements were being made.

The New York City lifeguard was widely praised after the storm for using his surfboard to move several Queens neighbors endangered by high water and a fire to safety.

Smith's body was found floating Sunday morning near his surfboard in waters off Maria's Beach in the western Puerto Rican community of Rincon. The town's beaches attract surfers from across the world.

Associated Press


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Monday, December 24, 2012

Telepresence robots let employees 'beam' into work

PALO ALTO, Calif. (AP) ? Engineer Dallas Goecker attends meetings, jokes with colleagues and roams the office building just like other employees at his company in Silicon Valley.

But Goecker isn't in California. He's more than 2,300 miles away, working at home in Seymour, Indiana.

It's all made possible by the Beam ? a mobile video-conferencing machine that he can drive around his company's offices and workshops in Palo Alto. The five-foot-tall device, topped with a large video screen, gives him a physical presence that makes him and his colleagues feel like he's actually there.

"This gives you that casual interaction that you're used to at work," Goecker said, speaking on a Beam. "I'm sitting in my desk area with everybody else. I'm part of their conversations and their socializing."

Suitable Technologies, which makes the Beam, is now one of more than a dozen companies that sell so-called telepresence robots. These remote-controlled machines are equipped with video cameras, speakers, microphones and wheels that allow users to see, hear, talk and "walk" in faraway locations.

More and more employees are working remotely, thanks to computers, smartphones, email, instant messaging and video-conferencing. But those technologies are no substitute for actually being in the office, where casual face-to-face conversations allow for easy collaboration and camaraderie.

Telepresence-robot makers are trying to bridge that gap with wheeled machines ? controlled over wireless Internet connections ? that give remote workers a physical presence in the workplace.

These robotic stand-ins are still a long way from going mainstream, with only a small number of organizations starting to use them. The machines can be expensive, difficult to navigate or even get stuck if they venture into areas with poor Internet connectivity. Stairs can be lethal, and non-techies might find them too strange to use regularly.

"There are still a lot of questions, but I think the potential is really great," said Pamela Hinds, co-director of Stanford University's Center on Work, Technology, & Organization. "I don't think face-to-face is going away, but the question is, how much face-to-face can be replaced by this technology?"

Technology watchers say these machines ? sometimes called remote presence devices ? could be used for many purposes. They could let managers inspect overseas factories, salespeople greet store customers, family members check on elderly relatives or art lovers to tour foreign museums.

Some physicians are already seeing patients in remote hospitals with the RP-VITA robot co-developed by Santa-Barbara, Calif.,-based InTouch Health and iRobot, the Bedford, Mass.,-based maker of the Roomba vacuum.

The global market for telepresence robots is projected to reach $13 billion by 2017, said Philip Solis, research director for emerging technologies at ABI Research.

The robots have attracted the attention of Russian venture capitalist Dimitry Grishin, who runs a $25 million fund that invests in early-stage robotics companies.

"It's difficult to predict how big it will be, but I definitely see a lot of opportunity," Grishin said. "Eventually it can be in each home and each office."

His Grishin Robotics fund recently invested $250,000 in a startup called Double Robotics. The Sunnyvale, Calif.,-company started selling a Segway-like device called the Double that holds an Apple iPad, which has a built-in video-conferencing system called FaceTime. The Double can be controlled remotely from an iPad or iPhone.

So far, Double Robotics has sold more than 800 units that cost $1,999 each, said co-founder Mark DeVidts.

The Beam got its start as a side project at Willow Garage, a robotics company in Menlo Park where Goecker worked as an engineer.

A few years ago, he moved back to his native Indiana to raise his family, but he found it difficult to collaborate with engineering colleagues using existing video-conferencing systems.

"I was struggling with really being part of the team," Goecker said. "They were doing all sorts of wonderful things with robotics. It was hard for me to participate."

So Goecker and his colleagues created their own telepresence robot. The result: the Beam and a new company to develop and market it.

At $16,000 each, the Beam isn't cheap. But Suitable Technologies says it was designed with features that make "pilots" and "locals" feel the remote worker is physically in the room: powerful speakers, highly sensitive microphones and robust wireless connectivity.

The company began shipping Beams last month, mostly to tech companies with widely dispersed engineering teams, officials said.

"Being there in person is really complicated ? commuting there, flying there, all the different ways people have to get there. Beam allows you to be there without all that hassle," said CEO Scott Hassan, beaming in from his office at Willow Garage in nearby Menlo Park.

Not surprisingly, Suitable Technologies has fully embraced the Beam as a workplace tool. On any given day, up to half of its 25 employees "beam" into work, with employees on Beams sitting next to their flesh-and-blood colleagues and even joining them for lunch in the cafeteria.

Software engineer Josh Faust beams in daily from Hawaii, where he moved to surf, and plans to spend the winter hitting the slopes in Lake Tahoe. He can't play ping-pong or eat the free, catered lunches in Palo Alto, but he otherwise feels like he's part of the team.

"I'm trying to figure out where exactly I want to live. This allows me to do that without any of the instability of trying to find a different job," Faust said, speaking on a Beam from Kaanapali, Hawaii. "It's pretty amazing."


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Friday, December 14, 2012

Eva Herzigov? Expecting Third Child

Eva Herzigov? is five months pregnant with her third child, her agency Storm Models confirms.


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Asian shares mixed after China data, "fiscal cliff" weighs

TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian shares were mixed on Friday with a pick-up in China's manufacturing sector lending support but worries over the progress of U.S. budget talks to avert the "fiscal cliff" weighing on investor sentiment.

European shares were expected to start higher, with financial spreadbetters predicting London's FTSE 100, Paris's CAC-40 and Frankfurt's DAX will open as much as 0.3 percent higher. A 0.3 percent gain in U.S. stock futures hinted at a firm Wall Street open.

A deteriorating business sentiment survey and expectations that the Bank of Japan will ease policy further to support the weak economy next week pushed the yen to a near 9-month low against the dollar and an 8-month low against the euro, helping Japanese equities wipe out earlier losses.

China shares outperformed Asian peers after the HSBC flash purchasing managers' index for December hit a 14-month high of 50.9, the fifth straight monthly gain, showing growth in China's vast manufacturing sector picked up and underlined a brighter outlook for the economy in coming months.

The private survey followed recent positive data suggesting Chinese economic activity has gained some momentum in the fourth quarter after it slowed for seven consecutive quarters.

A state-backed think tank has also forecast China's GDP growth next year at around 8 percent -- above the likely government target -- while calling for an expansion in the central government's fiscal deficit to offset an uncertain external environment.

The Shanghai Composite Index soared 4 percent while Hong Kong shares rose 0.8 percent to a 16-month peak.

"We're seeing positive PMI, industrial data and they are all pointing to the direction of an economic recovery," said Sijin Cheng, a commodities analyst at Barclays Capital. "The underlying demand is going to improve gradually."

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was little changed, hovering near 16-month highs which it had hit successively since December 5. The index was set to end the week up 1.4 percent.

Australian shares ended flat, giving up earlier gains as investors remained wary of the stalled U.S. budget talks.

A seven-day rally in world shares came to a halt and commodity prices slipped on Thursday after negotiations over the U.S. "fiscal cliff" hit a wall.

President Barack Obama and House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner held a "frank" face-to-face meeting late on Thursday in an effort to break an impasse in talks to avert the "fiscal cliff" of some $600 billion of tax hikes and spending cuts scheduled to start in January.

"With the end of the year coming up, I can't see anybody taking any significant positions ahead of this political unknown (the fiscal cliff)," the trader added.

Failure to avert the "fiscal cliff" could derail the struggling U.S. economic recovery and also snuff out encouraging signs emerging from China, the world's second-largest economy after the United States.

"You're not going to get a solution that will be a 100 percent, but it may be a third or a quarter. It will be something a bit hard to reduce the deficit, but they'll get a good vote on it which will make it a good rosy story -- the U.S. is not interested in can-kickers any more," said Jonathan Barratt, chief executive of Barratt's Bulletin, a Sydney-based commodity research firm.


In the world's third-largest economy, big Japanese manufacturers' sentiment worsened in the three months to December, a Bank of Japan's quarterly tankan survey showed on Friday, hurting an economy already seen to be in a mild recession.

The data will help reinforce market expectations for the Japanese central bank to further ease monetary policy.

The yen fell as low as 83.95 against the dollar. The euro stood at 109.83 yen, its highest in more than eight months and looked set to end the week up over 3 percent on the yen.

Japan's Nikkei share average turned up 0.1 percent, rebounding from earlier declines.

Japan's conservative Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) is on track for a stunning victory in Sunday's election, gaining momentum to pressure the BOJ for more forceful easing.

"The market is growing confident the next government will be one of the most aggressive about easing that you could think of," said a trader at a Japanese bank.

Oil prices rebounded from Thursday's fall after Chinese manufacturing data raised hopes for firmer demand, with U.S. crude futures rising 0.8 percent to $86.54 a barrel and Brent adding 0.4 percent to $108.39.

Spot gold steadied near $1,696 an ounce after tumbling 1 percent the previous session to push prices below $1,700 for the first time this week. Gold was set for a third weekly decline as funds liquidate positions to lock in profit for the year.

Sluggish stocks weighed on Asian credit markets, keeping the spreads on the iTraxx Asia ex-Japan investment-grade index barely changed from Thursday.

(Additional reporting by Hideyuki Sano in Tokyo, Florence Tan and Melanie Burton in Singapore; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)


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Thursday, December 13, 2012

Mourners gather at funeral for Chiefs' Belcher

DIX HILLS, N.Y. (AP) ? Jovan Belcher was remembered Wednesday for the accomplishments of a life that ended so suddenly and violently.

Several hundred mourners gathered for the Kansas City Chiefs linebacker's funeral near his hometown on Long Island. The 25-year-old Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend on Dec. 1, then drove to the Chiefs' practice facility and committed suicide in front of team officials.

At Upper Room Christian Church on Wednesday, relatives wore black - and red, the Chiefs' color. Pastor Dawn Mixon shared that Belcher's mother, Cheryl Shepherd, described him as a "humble, kind young man." He had a soft spot for children and loved cartoons.

"We may not understand the reasons why we are here or understand what caused this tragedy," Mixon said.

At a celebration of Belcher's life, there were hints of the way it ended. A photo slide show played on a large screen above the stage, with images from Belcher's childhood through his football careers at nearby West Babylon High School and the University of Maine.

Then appeared the words "In loving memory of" Belcher and Kasandra Perkins, the mother of his 3-month-old daughter. After a series of pictures of Perkins and baby Zoey came the message, "Keep this little girl in your prayers."

"The legacy we pass on to her will be good," said his uncle, Davin Miles.

Next to an open casket were collages of photos and mementos from Belcher's playing career. An array of flowers spelled out W.B. for his high school.

Chiefs players and staff attended a memorial service for Belcher in Kansas City last week. His locker at their practice facility had been left intact after his death ? his helmet, pads, laundry and shoes still sitting there the way he left them. As the Chiefs returned from an off day Wednesday, it had finally been cleaned out.

On a Saturday morning, the day before the team's game against the Carolina Panthers, Belcher shot the 22-year-old Perkins multiple times at their home. Police said Belcher and Perkins previously had been arguing.

Belcher then drove to Arrowhead Stadium, where he thanked coach Romeo Crennel and general manager Scott Pioli for all they'd done for him. As police arrived, Belcher slipped behind a car and put the gun to his head.

His path to becoming an NFL starter had been an unlikely one. Belcher did not play in college football's top division, and he wasn't drafted. But he made the Chiefs, becoming a full-time starter in 2010.

Bishop Stephanie Green described Belcher as "a man who did some awesome things ? while other young men his age were out hustling, slinging and doing other things, he chose an education."


AP Sports Writer Dave Skretta in Kansas City, Mo., contributed to this report.


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Tuesday, December 11, 2012

In court papers US alleges HSBC allowed prohibited transactions with Iran, Libya, others

WASHINGTON - The Justice Department says the British bank HSBC violated the Bank Secrecy Act in connection with the laundering of money from narcotics drug traffickers in Mexico.

In court papers filed Tuesday, the federal government said the case against HSBC is related to the laundering of proceeds from narcotics trafficking via the Black Market Peso Exchange ? a method by which money launderers convert cash narcotics dollars into Colombian pesos.

The government also alleges that HSBC intentionally allowed prohibited transactions with Iran, Libya, Sudan and Burma. The bank also facilitated transactions with Cuba in violation of the Trading With the Enemy Act, according to the documents.

The documents in federal court in Brooklyn say the prohibited transactions with Iran, Libya, Sudan and Burma took place from 2001 through 2006.

The government's allegations come as HSBC says it has agreed to pay $1.9 billion to settle the U.S. money-laundering probe. The move avoids a legal battle that could further savage the bank's reputation and undermine confidence in the global banking system.


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Caltech wizards develop terahertz-radiating chips, eye homeland security and 'touchless gaming' applications

Caltech wizards develop terahertzradiating chips, eye homeland security and 'touchless gaming' applications

A duo of electrical engineers (or mad scientists, if you prefer) at the California Institute of Technology have developed chips that could very well end up in the next James Bond movie. Or, you know, real life. The newfangled chips are capable of generating and radiating "high-frequency electromagnetic waves, called terahertz (THz) waves, that fall into a largely untapped region of the electromagnetic spectrum." They can penetrate a host of materials without the ionizing damage of X-rays, and apparently, can be integrated into small, handheld devices. The university is already dreaming of potential applications -- everything from homeland security to wireless communications to health care, and even touchless gaming. In theory, this kind of work would eventually lead to noninvasive cancer diagnosis as well. The technobabble can be seen in full at the source link.

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Source: Caltech


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FTSE falls as Italian woes hit banks

LONDON (Reuters) -The FTSE 100 index edged lower on Monday, led by financial stocks which fell on worries over Italy's economy after the country's prime minister said he would resign.

Traders had mixed views over whether the fall would be temporary, with some still expecting a traditional year-end rally, while others backed selling equities in case the stock market fell further.

The blue-chip FTSE 100 was down by 0.3 percent, or 17.63 points lower, at 5,896.77 points by around midday, halting a three-week rally, with the index having risen more than 5 percent from a low of around 5,600 points in mid-November.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti said on Saturday that he would resign after the 2013 budget is approved, increasing political uncertainty in the heavily indebted country and probably bringing forward elections to February.

Hartmann Capital trader Basil Petrides said the uncertain outlook meant investors should book profits on the back of recent gains on equities, with the FTSE 100 up around 6 percent so far since the start of 2012.

"If you've got profit on the table, it should be banked. At the moment, I have a short-term negative bias. The market could gently trickle lower," he said.

Banks and insurers, which are exposed to the euro zone's debt crisis due to their sovereign bond holdings, were among the worst-performing sectors, and Petrides said he had "short" positions out on that sector to bet on further falls.

The FTSE 350 banking index was down by 0.8 percent, with HSBC accounting for much of the FTSE 100's fall as it slipped 0.7 percent.

Worries over a deterioration in the euro zone crisis also hit insurers, with Aviva falling 2.5 percent to make it the worst-performing FTSE 100 stock.

"I am 'short' on Barclays and Aviva," said Petrides.


Securequity sales trader Jawaid Afsar had a more positive outlook, expecting the market to have the year-end rally it traditionally experiences, despite the problems in Italy.

The FTSE 100 is also trading above the 50-day and 200-day simple moving average levels, which lie at around 5,800 points and 5,700 points, respectively, and which is often used as a sign by technical traders that the index could rise further.

Oriel Securities strategist Darren Winder said UK miners could be on track for a strong 2013, and Afsar also backed buying shares in that sector.

Afsar added he was considering buying shares in Barclays following the dip in the bank's share price. He said he could buy the stock at around the 240-245 pence level, with Barclays down 1 percent on Monday at around 249 pence.

Afsar said fund managers would still look to put money into shares ahead of the year-end, with stocks offering better returns via dividend payments than cash or sovereign bonds, where returns have suffered due to interest rates at historic lows.

"There are a lot of fund managers who are underweight on equities, and they'll be looking to put their money to work," he said.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Louise Heavens)


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donards Site - Internet and Businesses Online: SEO Article ...

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Friday, December 7, 2012

Rains again halt Nelson Mandela golf event

Published: Dec. 7, 2012 at 6:13 AM

DURBAN, South Africa, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- Heavy rains and lightning Friday in South Africa caused another postponement of first-round play at the European Tour's Nelson Mandela Championship.

The event is the first on the 2012-13 European PGA Tour calendar.

Rains Thursday led organizers to delay the first round but more than an inch of rain fell on the Royal Durban course early Friday, leaving it unplayable.

"The further overnight rain -- around 30mm -- and a huge thunderstorm has obviously set us back a long way now," said European Tour Tournament Director Mikael Eriksson.

"Every fairway is almost completely underwater now ... ."

Course officials were moving in pumps to try to clear numerous areas of standing water.

Eriksson said the first round was rescheduled to begin at 6:30 a.m. Saturday. Organizers didn't say whether the event would be reduced from 72 holes but with the European Tour in South Africa for next week's Alfred Dunhill Championship, the Durban tournament could be extended to Monday.


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Shoe Carnival paying special, quarterly dividends

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) -- Shoe Carnival Inc. said Friday that its board approved the payment of a special cash dividend of $1 per share and a quarterly cash dividend of 5 cents.

The Evansville, Ind.-based footwear and accessories company said the dividends will be paid on Dec. 28 to shareholders of record as of Dec. 17.

Shoe Carnival is the latest company to move up its quarterly payout or issue a special end-of-year payment to protect investors from potentially having to pay higher taxes on dividend income starting in January.

Many companies are reviewing their dividend policies now that it appears investors could soon pay higher taxes. Since 2003 investors have paid a maximum 15 percent on dividend income. But that historically low rate will expire in January unless Congress and President Barack Obama reach a compromise on taxes and government spending.

As it stands, dividends will be taxed as ordinary income in 2013, the same as wages, so rates will go up depending on which income bracket a taxpayer is in. For the highest earners, the dividend rate would jump to 43.4 percent.

Shoe Carnival shares rose 10 cents to $22 in morning trading Friday. They peaked at $24.66 on Aug. 23 over the past year. They fell as low as $14.97 last December.

The company operates 352 stores in 32 states and Puerto Rico,


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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Saturday, November 10, 2012

A MotherHood Experience: Sears Portrait Studio Experience

It's hard to believe we are already in the midst of November, only two more months left until the new year! We are already thinking ahead for the upcoming holiday season including decorating ideas, thinking up holiday feasts, gift giving ideas, sending out annual greeting cards and of course family holiday photos!

We all know holiday photo shoots are a great way to make new memories and share them with family and friends in an ever lasting professional photo - we just haven't ever had them done before!

This year will be our first holiday photo shoot and we are super excited to be having them done courtesy of Sears Canada! Sears Canada invited us to make a lasting memory with our family in the Sears Portrait Studio! I admit, we really should have done more of these sooner.

Holiday shopping

Now, before heading off to get our smiles on we needed to dress the kids up a little. As cute as they already are, holiday portraits are all the cuter with the proper attire. We decided to head on into our local Sears location and take advantage of the Sears kids clothing sale! I had posted about it previously via Facebook and Twitter!

Everything dress wear was on sale from Baby to Teen, for 25% off so we were able to dress both kids for less! Sears Canada has lovely dresses in a wide variety of colours and styles for girls and cute, stylish outfits and simple shirt-tie sets for boys. From casual to more fancy, it was hard to decide what to buy for our two little munchkins. Although we were tempted to go fancy (little guy found a really cute shirt and tie set) we decided to go with a dressy-casual look for the kids. Our daughter chose a nice dress and our son a sweater with new jeans to match. They can also wear these outfits after the holidays too!

The photo shoot

Sears Portrait Studio makes it easy to book an appointment online, by phone or even just walk-in for us busy on the go moms! I booked our appointment for a Sunday morning, but unfortunately it was re booked to next week so please, stay tuned for an update including our family photos!

This will be our first time at a professional photo shoot as I said, everyone is excited (some of us may be anxious) and can't wait to share with all of you! Our kids are used to having their pictures taken by us being a little older but for those of you with babies and younger kids who can't sit still or you're afraid won't co operate, the photographers at Sears Portrait Studios are known to be great at helping get the perfect smiles from your little ones! The best photos are always ones when you are relaxed and yourselves.

Our holiday photo session comes with 10 photo cards to share with family and friends, those are going to make a nice finishing touch to our holiday gifts this year!

Keep up to date with everything Sears Canada by following @SearsCa on Twitter and liking the Sears Canada Facebook page! You can also find great promotions and sales online at!?

The Giveaway

We want you to make ever lasting memories this holiday season with Sears Canada Portrait Studio. One lucky Canadian AME reader has the chance to win their very own FREE portrait session (voucher) courtesy of Sears Canada and MomCentral Canada! Not only that but winner will also receive a SECOND FREE portrait session (voucher) to share with family and friends!?

Giveaway open to CANADIAN residents only. Entering this giveaway on multiple blogs is OK but you can only win the prize once! Ends November 23rd, 2012! GOOD LUCK!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Posted by AME in participation with Sears The Baby's Room Ambassador program with Mom Central Canada. Special perks are received in affiliation with this group which do not reflect the overall opinions and comments on this blog which are those of the author. Giveaway prize provided by MomCentral Canada.?


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Home Based Business University - Internet Radio

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    A look at Syrian president's statements on crisis

    President Bashar Assad has rarely deviated from his statements on the crisis in Syria since it began nearly 20 months ago. Here is a look at his latest remarks, in an interview shown Friday by broadcaster Russia Today:

    ? "We do not have a civil war."

    Assad has insisted the revolt against his rule is the work of what he calls foreign terrorists ? hostile countries and extremists who want to destroy Syria.

    The uprising began with months of protests by ordinary citizens that turned violent after repeated attacks by security forces. On July 15, the International committee of the Red Cross said it considers the conflict to be a full-blown civil war. That term allows parties involved to use appropriate force to achieve their aims under international humanitarian law.

    ? "I can tell (you) that in weeks we can finish everything."

    Assad has said his military would be able to restore calm quickly ? but only if foreign countries immediately stop sending weapons and aid to the rebels.

    Foreign countries, including nations in the West, Europe and the Gulf, do support the opposition, although most have said they won't arm the rebels out of fear the weapons could fall into the wrong hands. Weapons are being smuggled in, however, although the rebels say they are only getting light arms that cannot turn the tide against the regime's far superior firepower.

    ? "I think that the cost of foreign invasion of Syria, if it happened, would be greater than the whole world can afford."

    Assad has warned against foreign military intervention before, saying any attempt to meddle in the crisis would cause the entire region to burn.

    The conflict does have the potential to suck in neighboring countries because Syria has a web of allegiances to powerful forces, including Iran and the Shiite militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon. But world powers have shown no appetite for military intervention, and even Assad acknowledges it's an unlikely scenario.

    ? "We are the last bastion of secularism, stability and coexistence in the region."

    Syria is too wracked by conflict to be seen as a bastion of stability and coexistence, but it's true that the country has pushed a secular identity in the past. In many ways, it was a strategy to hold together the country's fragile jigsaw puzzle of Sunnis, Shiites, Alawites, Christians, Kurds, Druse, Circassians, Armenians and others.

    Sectarian violence is widely feared, and in a worst-case scenario, the country could descend into warfare among religious sects. The Assad regime is dominated by the Alawite minority, an offshoot of Shiite Islam, but the country is overwhelmingly Sunni Muslim. The uprising already has brought sectarian tensions to the surface.


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    November 9, 2012 - Posted by imarieswancullen | 100K - 150K, All Human, Canon, Complete, Daddy/DILFward, Doc/Paramedicward, Drama, EdwardxBella, Family, Friendship, HEA, Humour, IMarieSwanC TBR List, Jerkward, Momella, Multi-Chapter, Playboyward, Rated-M, Romance, Smut/Lemons, Sweetward, Teacher/Professorella | anhanninen, Fanfiction, Rec, Twilight

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    Friday, November 9, 2012

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