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Member since: Fri Nov 12, 2004, 08:39 AM
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NY Group Buys Tesla Property, Plans Science Center

Source: Associated Press


— May. 7 5:33 PM EDT

MINEOLA, N.Y. (AP) — A New York community group that raised $1.3 million in a six-week online fundraising effort has purchased a laboratory once used by visionary scientist Nikola Tesla.

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Tesla was a rival of Thomas Edison who imagined a world of free electricity. He conducted experiments in the early 20th century at his laboratory in Shoreham, about 65 miles east of New York City.

- snip -

Their effort got a jolt of support last summer from Seattle cartoonist Matthew Inman, a Tesla fan who started promoting the fundraising effort on his website, theoatmeal.com.

Within six weeks, more than $1.3 million had been raised from 33,000 donors in the U.S. and 108 countries.

Tesla abandoned the lab in 1917. For many years it was a photo chemical processing plant; in 1993, officials determined that the property's groundwater had been polluted with cadmium and silver. A remediation effort overseen by state environmental regulators was completed last year.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/ny-group-buys-tesla-property-plans-science-center

BREAKING: Delaware State Senate Votes to Become the 11th State to Allow Same-Sex Marriage

Source: Associated Press

Delaware state Senate votes to become 11th state allowing same-sex marriage

Delaware to become 11th state with gay marriage


Delaware will become the 11th state to allow same-sex marriages.

A divided state Senate gave final legislative approval Tuesday to a bill authorizing same-sex marriage after hearing about three hours of debate. The vote sends the bill to Democratic Gov. Jack Markell, who has promised to sign it.

The bill doesn't give same-sex couples any more rights or benefits under Delaware law than they currently have with civil unions. But supporters say same-sex couples deserve the dignity and respect of married couples. They also hope the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down a federal law barring married gay couples from receiving federal benefits.

Opponents, including many Delaware religious leaders, argue same-sex marriage redefines and destroys a centuries-old institution that is a building block of society.

Read more: http://www.newser.com/article/da64mshg0/delaware-state-senate-votes-to-become-11th-state-allowing-same-sex-marriage.html

Ammonium Nitrate Was Cause of Texas Explosion, State Agency Says

Source: Reuters

Ammonium nitrate was cause of Texas explosion, state agency says

Tue May 7, 2013 8:45am EDT

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (Reuters) - Investigators have determined that ammonium nitrate was the cause of the explosion at a West, Texas, fertilizer plant last month that left 14 people dead and some 200 injured, a spokeswoman for the Texas state fire marshal's office said on Tuesday.

"The investigators have been able to narrow down the origin to the fertilizer and seed building on site, and we also know that what caused the explosion was the ammonium nitrate," said Rachel Moreno, a spokeswoman for the Texas State Fire Marshal's Office. "What we don't know is exactly why."

The fire marshal's office has been leading the investigation of the April 17 blast, along with the federal Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agency (ATF).

Ammonium nitrate is a dry fertilizer mixed with other fertilizers such as phosphate and applied to crops to promote growth. It can be combustible under certain conditions, and was used as an ingredient in the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 that left 168 people dead.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE9460GP20130507

PHOTO: Amanda Berry Hugs Her Sister After Being Reunited


Amanda Berry, right, hugs her sister Beth Serrano after being reunited in a Cleveland hospital Monday May 6, 2013. Berry and two other women were found in a house near downtown Cleveland Monday after being missing for about a decade. (AP Photo/Family Handout courtesy WOIO-TV)

Bangladesh Garment Accident Death Toll Passes 700

Source: Associated Press

May 7, 3:12 AM EDT



DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) -- The death toll from last month's collapse of a building housing garment factories in Bangladesh has passed 700, police said Tuesday, as survivors of the country's worst-ever industrial disaster protested for compensation.

The police control room overseeing the recovery operation said the toll reached 705 dead Tuesday afternoon as workers pulled more bodies out of the wreckage of the illegally built eight-story building that housed five garment factories.

The disaster is the worst ever in the garment sector, surpassing the 1911 garment disaster in New York's Triangle Shirtwaist factory, which killed 146 workers, and more recent tragedies such as a 2012 fire that killed about 260 people in Pakistan and one in Bangladesh that killed 112, also in 2012.

Also Tuesday, hundreds of garment workers who survived the April 24 collapse of Rana Plaza blocked a major highway near the accident site in a Dhaka suburb to demand wages and other benefits.

Read more: http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_BANGLADESH_BUILDING_COLLAPSE

60 Minutes Story on Traumatic Brain Injury War Victims Coming On Now


GOP 'Party Animal' Unmasked as Holocaust Revisionist


GOP ‘Party Animal’ unmasked as Holocaust revisionist

By Rory Carroll, The Guardian
Friday, May 3, 2013 18:22 EDT

To those who knew him, or thought they they knew him, he was a cerebral, fun-loving gadfly who hosted boozy gatherings for Hollywood’s political conservatives. David Stein brought right-wing congressmen, celebrities, writers and entertainment industry figures together for shindigs, closed to outsiders, where they could scorn liberals and proclaim their true beliefs.

Over the past five years Stein’s organisation, Republican Party Animals, drew hundreds to regular events in and around Los Angeles, making him a darling of conservative blogs and talkshows. That he made respected documentaries on the Holocaust added intellectual cachet and Jewish support to Stein’s cocktail of politics, irreverence and rock and roll.

There was just one problem. Stein was not who he claimed. His real name can be revealed for the first time publicly – it was known to a close circle of confidants – as David Cole. And under that name he was once a reviled Holocaust revisionist who questioned the existence of Nazi gas chambers. He changed identities in January 1998.

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Some of Stein/Cole’s erstwhile friends are media figures with blogs, newspaper columns and syndicated radio shows. They put a lid on the story. Not a word has been published or broadcast. “When people found out it was, ‘Oh my God, get the fuck away from him.’ There was debate about whether everyone would look guilty by association,” said one entertainment industry artist, a member of Republican Party Animals, who requested anonymity. “The reason we were all so pissed at him is it plays into every horrible stereotype about the right.”


U.S. Officials Say Israel Has Launched Airstrike Against Target in Syria

Source: Associated Press

@AP: BREAKING: U.S. officials say Israel has launched airstrike against target in Syria. -MM

@AP: MORE: U.S. officials say Israel launched an airstrike into Syria, apparently targeting a suspected weapons site: http://t.co/ehIqC9mXAr

— May. 3 10:30 PM EDT
You are here
Home » Israel » Officials: Israel launches airstrike into Syria

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. officials say Israel has launched an airstrike into Syria, apparently targeting a suspected weapons site.

The officials say the strike occurred overnight Thursday into Friday. They say it does not appear that a chemical weapons site was targeted.

One official says the strike appeared to hit a warehouse.

Israel has targeted weapons in the past that it believes are being delivered to the Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah.

Read more: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/officials-israel-launches-airstrike-syria

Pentagon Blames UnitedHealth for Failures Under Contract

Source: Bloomberg

By Kathleen Miller

May 03, 2013 12:00 AM EDT

The Pentagon rebuked UnitedHealth (UNH) Group Inc., the nation’s largest insurer, after military families began experiencing long delays getting medical-care referrals from the company.

The backlogs occurred almost as soon as Minnetonka, Minnesota-based UnitedHealth took over a contract, valued as much as $20.5 billion, from TriWest Healthcare Alliance Corp. It assumed responsibility on April 1 for the western region of the military’s health-care system, known as Tricare.

UnitedHealth’s “failure to meet contractor requirements” has prevented a large number of beneficiaries in one Tricare health plan from obtaining timely access to specialty care, Jonathan Woodson, assistant secretary of defense for health affairs, said in a memo yesterday to other military leaders.

Woodson, calling the situation “extraordinary,” said the Pentagon stepped in to grant a temporary waiver so the plan’s members in the western region could get specialty care without UnitedHealth’s authorization and not incur penalties.

Read more: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-05-03/pentagon-blames-unitedhealth-for-failures-under-contract.html

Guantanamo Camp Burns Through $900,000 a Year Per Inmate

Source: Reuters

Guantanamo camp burns through $900,000 a year per inmate

Fri May 3, 2013 8:30pm EDT

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - It's been dubbed the most expensive prison on Earth and President Barack Obama cited the cost this week as one of many reasons to shut down the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, which burns through some $900,000 per prisoner annually.

The Pentagon estimates it spends about $150 million each year to operate the prison and military court system at the U.S. Naval Base in Cuba, which was set up 11 years ago to house foreign terrorism suspects. With 166 inmates currently in custody, that amounts to an annual cost of $903,614 per prisoner.

By comparison, super-maximum security prisons in the United States spend about $60,000 to $70,000 at most to house their inmates, analysts say. And the average cost across all federal prisons is about $30,000, they say.

The high cost was just one reason Obama cited when he returned this week to an unfulfilled promise to close the prison and said he would try again. Obama also said that the prison, set up under his Republican predecessor George W. Bush and long the target of criticism by rights groups and foreign governments, is a stain on the reputation of the United States.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE94211N20130504
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