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Member since: Fri Nov 12, 2004, 07:39 AM
Number of posts: 44,861

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From George Takei's Facebook Page: First Image from Mars Rover Curiosity


BREAKING NEWS: NASA’s Curiosity Rover Touches Down on Mars

Source: NBC News San Diego

"We are wheels down on Mars."

NASA's Curiosity rover scores touchdown on Mars

After 8 months of flight, spacecraft survives '7 minutes of terror' and lands safely

By Alan Boyle
Science editor
NBC News
updated 4 minutes ago

PASADENA, Calif. — After eight years of planning and eight months of interplanetary travel, NASA's Mars Science Laboratory pulled off a touchdown of Super Bowl proportions, all by itself.

The spacecraft plunged through Mars' atmosphere, fired up a rocket-powered platform and lowered the car-sized, 1-ton Curiosity rover to its landing spot in 96-mile-wide (154-kilometer-wide) Gale Crater. Then the platform flew off to its own crash landing, while Curiosity sent out a text message basically saying, "I made it!"

That message was relayed by the orbiting Mars Odyssey satellite back to Earth. A radio telescope in Australia picked up the message and sent it here to NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. When the blips of data appeared on the screens at JPL's mission control, the room erupted in cheers and hugs.

Because of the light-travel time between Mars and Earth, throngs of scientists and engineers — along with millions who were monitoring the action via television and the Internet — celebrated Curiosity's landing 14 minutes after it actually occurred.

Read more: http://www.nbcnews.com

(H/T: Image courtesy of DUer pokerfan)


"Touchdown Confirmed. We're Safe on Mars."

Watching live on the NASA cable channel.

"We are wheels down on Mars."

"Continuing to receive telemetry from Curiosity."

"We've got images coming down."


New York Times Reports 7 Dead in WI Shooting

Via their mobile feed.

Tens of Thousands Evacuated as High Winds Threaten Music Fest (Lollopalooza)

Source: Reuters

Tens of thousands evacuated as high winds threaten music fest

By Karen Brooks

Sat Aug 4, 2012 6:17pm EDT

(Reuters) - The Lollapalooza music festival in Chicago was suspended and tens of thousands of fans were evacuated to shelters on Saturday as the city braced for dangerous storms with high winds, organizers said.

Organizers were working with emergency management officials to determine if the event could resume on Saturday. The three-day music festival is scheduled to end on Sunday evening.

"Our first priority is always the safety of our fans, staff and artists," said Shelby Meade, communications director for C3 Presents, the promoter behind Lollapalooza. "We regret having to suspend any show but safety always comes first."

The National Weather Service office in Romeoville, Illinois, which covers Chicago, recorded wind gusts up to 55 miles per hour on Saturday and had reports of gusts up to 70 mph, some measured, some estimated, said meteorologist Ben Deubelbeiss.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE8730O420120804?irpc=932

City Declines to Defend Sued Officer (Pepper-Sprayed OWS Protesters)

Source: Wall Street Journal

City Declines to Defend Sued Officer

August 2, 2012, 8:55 p.m. ET


New York City has distanced itself from a high-ranking police official accused of firing pepper spray at Occupy Wall Street protesters, taking the unusual step of declining to defend him in a civil lawsuit over the incident.

The decision means Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna also could be personally liable for financial damages that may arise out of the suit, said lawyers familiar with similar civil-rights claims.

The 29-year veteran has asked a judge to reverse the city. "He wasn't doing this as Anthony Bologna, mister. He was doing this as Anthony Bologna, deputy inspector, NYPD," said his lawyer.

Read more: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443866404577565341948999820.html

"The level of hatred, unfounded fear and misinformed people was astoundingly sad."


Right-Wing Chick-fil-A "Appreciation Day" Round-Up: Intolerance On Display

- snip -

Gay and lesbian employees of Chick-fil-A had perhaps the most disheartening reaction to the day. An Alabama gay staffer named Andrew described the day as “hater appreciation day,” calling it “very, very depressing.” A gay employee at the company’s headquarters in Atlanta heard a customer say, “I’m so glad you don’t support the queers, I can eat in peace.” Another in Colorado had customers telling him, “I support your company, because your company hates the gays.” Many report experiencing homophobia not just from customers, but from fellow employees as well.

The Media Cries Fowl

Unfortunately, much of the media coverage yesterday was simply an open display of anti-gay views without much to rebut them. Still, there were a few notable highlights. For example, Fox News’ Shep Smith, who supports marriage equality, made a quick jab at Huckabee, pointing out that it was “National Badminton Day,” so “forget National Day of Intolerance, let’s just stay with Badminton.”

Journalist Mark Krzos of The News-Press in Fort Myers, Florida, wrote on Facebook that covering Chick-fil-A yesterday was incredibly disheartening:

"I have never felt so alien in my own country as I did today while covering the restaurant’s supporters. The level of hatred, unfounded fear and misinformed people was astoundingly sad. I can’t even print some of the things people said."


Siegelman Lawyer Asks for Leniency in New Sentence

Source: Associated Press

Siegelman lawyer asks for leniency in new sentence
BOB JOHNSON, Associated Press
Updated 04:30 p.m., Wednesday, August 1, 2012

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — An attorney for former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman has asked a federal judge not to send Siegelman back to prison on Friday, though Siegelman has written supporters to say he may be returning there for a lengthy stay.

U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller originally sentenced Siegelman to more than seven years in prison for his 2006 conviction for bribery and other charges in a government corruption case.

Fuller is resentencing Siegelman because a federal appeals court dropped two of the charges.

Siegelman and former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy were convicted of what prosecutors said was a scheme for Siegelman to appoint Scrushy to an important hospital regulatory board in exchange for Scrushy arranging $500,000 in contributions to Siegelman's campaign for a statewide lottery for education.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Siegelman-lawyer-asks-for-leniency-in-new-sentence-3755128.php

Spain's Judge Garzon Says U.S. Secretly Working to Have Wikileaks Founder Tried There

Source: Associated Press

Spain's Judge Garzon says United States secretly working to have Wikileaks founder tried there


MADRID - A controversial Spanish judge criticized the U.S. investigation into WikiLeaks on Wednesday, saying that the grand jury process which could lead to charges being filed against the secret-spilling site's founder is undemocratic.

Baltasar Garzon, a human rights lawyer best known for indicting former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet in 1998, recently agreed to act as an international co-ordinator for Julian Assange, the embattled WikiLeaks founder.

"A democratic country can't operate with its back to a person who is suspected of very serious crimes that could deprive him of liberty for a long time," Garzon told reporters. "The United States should make it known what it is doing so that Mr. Assange can stand up for his rights. We don't know what we are facing."

A Virginia grand jury is studying evidence that might lead to charges being filed against Assange for WikiLeaks' mass disclosure of hundreds of thousands of secret U.S. documents — including a quarter of a million State Department cables whose publication rocked Washington. The grand jury has been investigating the matter for more than a year and could continue for months or even years longer. Witnesses have been called, though the identities of most are unknown.

Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/touch/news/story.html?id=7024384

‘Pepper Spray Cop’ Loses His Job

Source: Sacramento Bee

‘Pepper Spray Cop’ loses his job

By Arturo Garcia
Wednesday, August 1, 2012 10:11 EDT

The infamous “Pepper Spray Cop” who attracted widespread criticism toward a California college last year is off the beat permanently, The Sacramento Bee reports.

A spokesperson for the University of California-Davis, where John Pike was captured pepper-spraying a group of seated protesters last November, said Pike was no longer employed with the school as of Tuesday, but did not specify whether Pike was fired or if he resigned, citing campus privacy rules.

Pike and his supervisor, campus police chief Annette Spicuzza, had been on paid administrative leave since the Nov. 18 incident. Spicuzza resigned in April, saying she did not want it to become a “defining moment” in her career. According to The Bee, Pike’s 2010 salary was reportedly just over $110,000.

“This whole time we were paying him, and he’s just sitting on his ass?” one student asked KOVR-TV.

Read more: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/08/01/pepper-spray-cop-loses-his-job/
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