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Greek Civil Servants Strike Against Latest Austerity Measures

Public services shut down in Greece on Wednesday when thousands of civil servants walked off their jobs in a 24-hour strike against the government’s latest austerity measures.  Prime Minister George Papandreou announced plans this week to trim pensions and reduce salaries for 30,000 civil servants that would then ultimately be let go. Schools, multi-level governmental operations, and courts closed when members of the two major unions began the strike, and more than 400 flights from the Athens International Airport were cancelled.  Train and ferry services were stopped, and hospitals were reported to be running on emergency staff only. Greece has been reliant on international aid since accepting a $157 billion dollar bailout in May 2010 to stave off bankruptcy.  A second bailout worth $155 billion was approved in July. The European Union, the … Read entire article »

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Hormonal Contraception Increases HIV Risk, New Study Reports

A new study published this week in The Lancet Infectious Diseases, shows some disturbing data about the contraception used by women in the eastern and southern areas of Africa, and the increased risk that these women then have to becoming infected with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus or H.I.V. as it is more commonly known. This is the virus which causes AIDS, Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. It seems that for women being given a hormone shot every three months, their risk of becoming infected with H.I.V. appears to double, and not only that, but for those women who have the shot but are H.I.V. positive, then their male partners are two times as likely to be infected … Read entire article »

Chaz Bono Spared Again On Dancing With The Stars

It came as a shock to many, but once again Chaz Bono and partner Lacey Schwimmer who were bottom of the points board on Dancing With The Stars again this week with only 18 points, escaped elimination on Tuesday night. On Tuesday night the bottom three couples were Carson Kressley and partner Anna Trebunskaya, Hope Solo with her partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Kristin Cavallari and her dancing partner Mark Ballas. The final result was one that not many expected, as it was Kristin Cavallari that was sent home, a move which stunned head judge Len Goodman, and this led to his remark about it being crazy, which in turn led to booing from the audience. There have … Read entire article »

New York’s Wall Street “Zombie” Movement Growing As Seven Hundred Arrested

Seven hundred protesters were arrested on the Brooklyn Bridge in New York over the weekend as the Occupy Wall Street demonstration continued to gain attention in North America. The leaderless protests began three weeks ago with a handful of college students camping out in Zuccotti Park, a plaza near New York’s financial center. The students were speaking out against a variety of causes, including corporate greed, social inequity, and global climate change. The number of protesters grew, and the first mass arrest of about 100 people took place on September 24 after protesters marched out of the Financial District into other … Read entire article »

HTC Is To Secure Data With A Fix As Soon As Possible

HTC, which was formerly the High Tech Computer Corporation, is  based in Taiwan and manufactures smartphones, but right now it is working on a fix to some of its Android handsets which are flawed and could allow apps of a malicious nature to obtain data such as account details, email addresses and location. Trevor Eckhart discovered the issue last week, and contacted HTC, who have investigated and realize that they need to develop a fix for this as soon as possible. The company has said that they do not know of any situations where data has been accessed maliciously, but agree that the threat is there. As soon as the problem has been fixed, and tested … Read entire article »

Canadian Ralph Steinman Wins Nobel Prize But Dies before It Is Announced

The Nobel Prize in Medicine was awarded on Monday to three scientists who have helped to discover how the immune system works. The three recipients are Bruce A. Beutler of Scripps Research Institute, of La Jolla, California, Jules A. Hoffmann, of the Institute for Molecular Cell Biology in Strasbourg, France, and Ralph M. Steinman of Rockefeller University in New York City. However, Steinman died of pancreatic cancer just a few days ago, something that the scientists at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden who chose the winners on behalf of the Nobel Foundation did not know when they reached their decision. This caused some problems since the rules stipulate that the recipients must be alive. After some research, … Read entire article »

Hole In Arctic Ozone Larger Than Ever Before

The ozone layer over the Northern Hemisphere is offering less protection than ever before, the journal Nature reports in the issue published on 2 October.  Researchers discovered that the hole that developed over the Arctic this year was about two million square kilometers in size, similar to the hole that appears each spring over the Antarctic. The ozone layer was discovered in 1913.  It is located in the stratosphere, between 10 to 20 miles above the Earth’s surface, where it absorbs most of the sun’s high frequency ultraviolet light.  Holes in the ozone layer are thought to expose people below to greater levels of cancer and cataract-causing UV radiation.  Nature’s study shows that people in Norway, … Read entire article »

Don Lapre Found Dead In Jail Cell Just Days Before Fraud Trial To Begin

The death of Don Lapre is being investigated after he was discovered dead in his jail cell in Florence, Arizona, on Sunday. Suicide is suspected, as he has tried to commit suicide at least once before. Lapre was due to attend his trial for fraud this week. Don Lapre, who was 47, dropped out of high school, and became involved in multilevel marketing. In the early to mid 1990s he ran infomercials, and in 1992 began broadcasting “The Making Money Show with Don Lapre”. His company sold products such as “The Greatest Vitamin in the World” as well as the “Making Money Package”, but his business plans were found not to work for many people, and … Read entire article »

Denmark Adds Tax To Unhealthy Fatty Foods

In an effort to curb unhealthy eating, several countries are adding taxes to foods which contain too much sugar, or, in the case of Denmark’s new tax, too much fat. Hungary introduced a tax last month for fatty foods, and those high in sugar or in salt, and on 1 October, Denmark added their tax, in an effort to reduce the amount of fat consumed in an effort to reduce cardiovascular disease. Butter and milk products are now taxed, along with pizzas, oils  and pre-cooked foods. According to Ole Linnet Juul who is the food director at Denmark’s Confederation of Industries, the tax which has been introduced is based on the amount of fat used in making … Read entire article »

Britain And France Warn Against Travel To Somalia And Kenyan Border

The kidnapping of a disabled Frenchwoman by Somali gunmen has resulted in Britain and France issuing travel warnings against travel to or in Somalia, and even travel within 150 km of the borders of Somalia. Great care should be taken at all times in the border areas between Somalia and Kenya. On Sunday, local officials confirmed that a French woman, Marie Didieu, is already in Somalia, having been kidnapped on Saturday by Somali gunmen from her home which is in Ras Gitau in Manda, east Kenya on the archipelago of Lamu. There is great concern because this is the second kidnapping in a month in this area of Kenya. The British Foreign & Commonwealth Office, FCO, had … Read entire article »

Some Banks To Charge Monthly Fee For Debit Card Use In U.S.

Some banks in the United States, including the Bank of America, which is the biggest lender in the U.S. based on assets, have announced plans, or intend to do so soon, to charge a monthly fee, for some of their debit cards. The fees being mentioned are in the $3 to $5 per customer per month per card. The banks are trying to find ways to make up for the limit that has been mandated  after the Federal Reserve issued rules which have capped what are known as swipe fees. Beginning 1 October, swipe fees are capped at 21 cents, with an additional 0.05 per cent of each transaction, and a 1 cent adjustment related to … Read entire article »

Kraft Recalls Some Velveeta Products Voluntarily In The U.S.

A voluntary recall was issued by Kraft Foods Global, Inc. on Friday for some Velveeta Shells and Cheese products which could contain small pieces of thin wire bristle. This announcement, from the world’s second largest food company is not because of any complaints about the products, but simply as a precautionary measure. The products under scrutiny are identifiable by their “best when used by” dates which are on the bottom of the packages. The products were manufactured in Champaign, Illinois as well as Lakeville Minnesota, but have been distributed to stores throughout the United States, but the recall does not affect Canada. as these products have not been shipped there. If you find that you have any … Read entire article »

Clifford Olson, Serial Killer Is Dead, Corrections Canada Announced Friday

Correction Services Canada made the announcement that many have been waiting to hear for a long time, that Canada’s serial killer Clifford Olson is dead. The relatives of Olson’s victims are now relieved that he is dead, Olson dying on Friday of natural causes, terminal cancer, at the age of 71. At the time of his death, he was a patient in the Health Care Centre of the Archambault Institution in Ste-Anne-des-Plaines, Que. Clifford Olson made the news in 1982 when he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting and killing 11 children, both boys and girls between the ages of 9 and 17 in British Columbia, Canada between November 1980 and July 1981. He was sentenced to … Read entire article »

Despite Shaky Sales, Hybrids Here To Stay

Toyota is expanding its hybrid Prius line to include both bigger and smaller models.  The new Prius V was designed for greater storage space in its larger rear hatch, and the soon-to-arrive Prius C will be a smaller version for city drivers.  There is a trend in the hybrid market towards providing more options for potential customers.  For instance, in 2009 there were 17 hybrid models on the market, and at the start of 2011 there were 30. But these expansions come in the hope of securing a larger market, rather than in response to an already present demand.  “When you look at sales, you have to say that hybrids have not been accepted,” said Scott … Read entire article »

Listeria Now Found In Romaine Lettuce As Number Of Deaths Rises

Cartons of bagged romaine lettuce, over 2,000 of them, have now been recalled after the lettuce tested positive for the listeria bacteria. Although there have been no reports of illness connected to the lettuce, True Leaf Farms of Salinas, California have recalled lettuce that was shipped on 12 and 13 September, and had a best before date of 29 September. The product had been sent to food distributors in many other states. Since the best before date has now passed for the lettuce, this should not add to the number of cases which have affected people in many different states due to contaminated cantaloupe. Listeria has sickened many, but the source of the outbreak has not been … Read entire article »

Last Chance For NBA Labor Talks

It is now two years since labor negotiations first began between NBA  union leaders and league officials, and time is running out with this year’s 82-game regular season of basketball on the line.  A meeting today in New York is expected to be one of the last opportunities for a deal to be made between the two parties.  “I’m focused on let’s get the two committees in and see whether they can either have a season or not have a season,” said NBA commissioner David Stern. The NBA lockout has been in position for 92 days, with owners claiming to have lost more than $300 million last season.  Owners are demanding shorter contracts, reduced maximum salaries … Read entire article »

FBI Arrest Boeing Workers At Ridley Park, Pa

It was announced by the FBI at a news conference on Thursday that they have made 37 arrests in connection with prescription drugs being distributed and used by some workers at the Boeing military aircraft plant at Ridley Park outside Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. Of those arrested on Thursday morning all but one are or were at one time Boeing employees. The Ridley Park plant employs over 5,000 workers, and the majority of those arrested were connected to the production area of this plant. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Philapelphia, 23 people were charged with the illegal distribution of prescription drugs. These drugs included Oxycontin and Actiq used to kill pain, as well as Xanax … Read entire article »

Twitter Study Finds We Are Happiest In The Morning

Twitter, one of the biggest social media sites in the world, has been the focus of a study that shows that people’s moods worsen throughout the day. Over a 2-year period, a group of Cornell University researchers set out to observe the attitudes and mentalities of 2.4 million users in 84 countries. The study, which is published Friday in the Journal of Science, showed that factors such as the amount of daylight, sleep and work all had key roles in affecting the participant’s emotions, such as alertness, distress, anger, and enthusiasm. The results, which looked at the positiveness levels of the participant’s tweets, showed that the majority of tweets were the least positive at the beginning of … Read entire article »