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littlewolf

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Member since: Sat Aug 28, 2010, 10:23 AM
Number of posts: 3,027

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some good news .. boy missing for 13 years found safe.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/alabama-boy-found-safe-after-going-missing-13-years-ago/ar-BBmRuNi?ocid=ansmsnnews11

An Alabama teenager who disappeared 13 years ago was found safe in Ohio on Nov. 1, Fox 8 News in Cleveland reports.
Julian Hernandez, now 18, was reported missing by his mother in Aug. 2002, after being allegedly abducted from the city of Birmingham by his non-custodial father Bobby Hernandez.
Thirteen years later, when the young Hernandez was attempting to apply to college, he realized that his Social Security number did not match his name, District Attorney Brandon Falls, of Alabama's Jefferson County, told local TV station WVTM.
Hernandez and a school counselor then learned that he was on the database of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the station says.

Congress just doesn't get it. more robo collection calls coming.

https://theintercept.com/2015/10/28/boehnerland-lobbyists-win-right-to-bombard-student-borrowers-with-robocalls/

Deep inside the 114-page budget deal that passed the House Wednesday, legislative leaders tucked in a provision that will free debt collectors to bombard student loan borrowers with unlimited robocall and automated text messages where it hurts most — on their mobile devices — even when they are asked to stop.
The change is a major victory for the debt collections industry, which has retained a small army of lawyers and lobbyists for years to weaken the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, the law that protects people from unwanted robocalls and prerecorded messages.
It’s also a big win for the small network of lobbyists within outgoing Speaker John Boehner’s inner circle, a cadre nicknamed “Boehnerland” by D.C insiders.

snip

Marc Lampkin, Boehner’s former general counsel and close personal friend, is a lobbyist with Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, a law firm that has led the charge on Capitol Hill and with the Federal Communications Commission requesting liability exemptions from the TCPA on behalf of student loan servicing giant Nelnet. Barry Jackson, Boehner’s chief of staff for nearly 12 years, also works at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck.
Records show that Brownstein met with FCC officials over half a dozen times this year to ask for the exemptions. The firm also collected at least $220,000 from Nelnet to lobby Congress on the issue.
As the Huffington Post’s Shahien Nasirpour reported, “The measure in the potential budget deal (Section 301) would amend existing law to allow companies to use auto-dialers when they call borrowers’ cell phones — even when federal student loan borrowers haven’t consented to them, and even if the borrowers will be charged for them.” (bold added by me)

snip

President Barack Obama also supports changing the law to allow more automated calls by debt collectors.
Consumer advocates are livid that congressional leaders, including Boehner, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate leaders, would agree to such a deal.
“Robocalls continue to be one of the top consumer complaints, and the overly broad provision in the budget bill would only make things worse,” said Christine Hines, legislative director of the National Association of Consumer Advocates. “It’s a handout to the student loan and debt collection industries and it would roll back consumer protections against unsolicited and unwanted prerecorded calls.”

snip

Other critics note that Nelnet has abused debt collection practices in the past, including one case in which a student who had never taken out a loan was harassed with 80 unwanted calls.
Lawmakers also used the debt ceiling as a maneuver to give legislative handouts to special interests last year. The so-called CRomnibus deal included $120 million in tanks that the Pentagon specifically asked Congress to stop requesting.


FDA approves first virus will kill cancer cells.

http://www.wired.com/2015/10/fda-approves-first-virus-will-kill-cancer-cells/

BY THE NUMBERS, the newest FDA-approved treatment for skin cancer doesn’t seem a real game changer. A $65,000 course of treatment extends melanoma patients’ lives by less than four and a half months, on average—and that result is barely statistically significant.

snip

It’s how the new drug—Imlygic, made by the biotechnology company Amgen—works that has the oncology world so worked up. Imlygic is a virus—alive and infectious, the first to get a stamp of approval in the US for its ability to attack cancer cells. It opens a whole new front in the fight against cancer, which has the sneaky habit of coming back after chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery. “It is a totally new class of weapons that we can now use,” says Antonio Chiocca, a neurosurgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. And the armory could be bigger, because coming up right behind Imlygic are over a dozen clinical trials for more anti-cancer viruses.

snip

Imlygic itself is a reengineered version of the herpesvirus—the one that causes cold sores. To administer the drug, oncologists inject a massive dose—millions of viruses—directly into the skin tumor. Herpesvirus also prefers to infect cancer cells, busting them into bits. “The immune system sees all the debris,” says Chiocca. “This makes the immune system wake up and say, ‘Hey, there’s something going on here. Let’s check it out.’” So it’s a two-fer: Notionally, Imlygic attacks the tumor directly, and helps stimulate the patient’s own immune system into joining the fight.

snip

What the data do show, though, is that Imlygic isn’t that great a drug by itself. In trials it extended survival time by 4.4 months and shrunk tumors for at least six months in 16 percent of patients. That’s not terribly effective (though its side effects—flu-like symptoms—are downright mild compared to most chemotherapy). It does show promise in combination with other drugs called checkpoint inhibitors, which inhibit the molecules that inhibit—so basically, stimulate—the immune system. One small trial of 19 patients with Imlygic and a checkpoint inhibitor called Yervoy found a response for half of the patients. “I think these combination approaches are where the real action is going to happen the future,” Bell says.


alot more at the link.

cancer sucks.

well I am a little late to the revolution but I am getting there.

have replaced most of my light bulbs ( Incandescent )
with LED bulbs still have a few that haven't burned out yet
but they will be replaced when they go.

I never used the curly ones … never liked em. they didn't seem
to last as long as advertised.

we lost a lot of good jobs making light bulbs .. many of them union jobs.

I like these LED ones better.


x posted from NC forum: is the GOP planning on changing the state retirement plan?


I guess the GOP wants to lose this next election. changing the state retirement plan.



House Democratic Leader Larry Hall called a press conference Thursday to tell reporters that a Republican “secret society” is planning sweeping changes to the state employee retirement system.
Hall said he’s heard that legislative leaders plan to switch to a defined contribution retirement system, either as part of the state budget deal or a separate bill this session.
But both House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger said Thursday that the claims aren’t true.

“People have been talking for years about changing the retirement system to a defined contribution as opposed to a defined benefit plan,” Berger told The News & Observer shortly after Hall’s press conference. “I think people probably are still talking about that, but there’s nothing in the budget about that. I don’t see anything happening this session about it.”
Moore also said no changes are afoot. “The House wanted to maintain the current system we have, and there will be no change to that this year,” he told reporters.

State employees currently have a defined benefit plan that calculates retirement benefits based on their years of employment and their salary. A defined contribution plan – common in the private sector – would make set contributions for each employee to an investment fund, with benefits that vary based on how well the investment fund performs. Examples of defined contribution plans are 401(k) plans in which a portion of the employees’ contributions are matched by the employer.
A switch to defined contribution could reduce the state’s retirement costs, but it could also mean less generous benefits for retirees.


not sure if this is believable … this Dem could be just stirring the pot. getting some press on something that
isn't there.
when I worked for DOC this "rumor" made its way around every couple of years no matter if it was
Dems or GOP running things …

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/politics-government/article34711191.html#storylink=cpy

I guess the GOP wants to lose this next election. changing the state retirement plan.


House Democratic Leader Larry Hall called a press conference Thursday to tell reporters that a Republican “secret society” is planning sweeping changes to the state employee retirement system.
Hall said he’s heard that legislative leaders plan to switch to a defined contribution retirement system, either as part of the state budget deal or a separate bill this session.
But both House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger said Thursday that the claims aren’t true.

“People have been talking for years about changing the retirement system to a defined contribution as opposed to a defined benefit plan,” Berger told The News & Observer shortly after Hall’s press conference. “I think people probably are still talking about that, but there’s nothing in the budget about that. I don’t see anything happening this session about it.”
Moore also said no changes are afoot. “The House wanted to maintain the current system we have, and there will be no change to that this year,” he told reporters.

State employees currently have a defined benefit plan that calculates retirement benefits based on their years of employment and their salary. A defined contribution plan – common in the private sector – would make set contributions for each employee to an investment fund, with benefits that vary based on how well the investment fund performs. Examples of defined contribution plans are 401(k) plans in which a portion of the employees’ contributions are matched by the employer.
A switch to defined contribution could reduce the state’s retirement costs, but it could also mean less generous benefits for retirees.


not sure if this is believable … this Dem could be just stirring the pot. getting some press on something that
isn't there.
when I worked for DOC this "rumor" made its way around every couple of years no matter if it was
Dems or GOP running things …

Read more here: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/politics-government/article34711191.html#storylink=cpy

French Court upholds Monsanto conviction.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/companies/french-court-confirms-monsanto-guilty-of-chemical-poisoning/ar-AAe9zQY?ocid=iehp&ocid=ansmsnmoney11

A French court upheld on Thursday a 2012 ruling in which Monsanto was found guilty of chemical poisoning of a French farmer, who says he suffered neurological problems after inhaling the U.S. company's Lasso weed killer.
The decision by an appeal court in Lyon, southeast France, confirmed the initial judgment, the first such case heard in court in France, that ruled Monsanto was "responsible" for the intoxication and ordered the company to "fully compensate" grain grower Paul Francois.

Monsanto's lawyer said the U.S. biotech company would now take the case to France's highest appeal court.
Francois, who says he suffered memory loss, headaches and stammering after inhaling Monsanto's Lasso in 2004, blames the agri-business giant for not providing adequate warnings on the product label.

Lasso, a pre-emergent soil-applied herbicide that has been used since the 1960s to control grasses and broadleaf weeds in farm fields, was banned in France in 2007 after the product had already been withdrawn in other countries such as Canada, Belgium and Britain.
Monsanto phased out of Lasso in the United States several years ago for commercial reasons, its spokesman in France said.
Though it once was a top-selling herbicide, it gradually lost popularity, and critics say several studies have shown links to a range of health problems.

more at the link

10 year old girl gets bitten by shark, pulls 6 year old friend to safety.

http://www.news4jax.com/news/girl-bitten-by-shark-pulls-friend-to-safety/34843102

Kaley Szarmack said she was in waist deep water about 3:30 Wednesday afternoon near 25th Avenue South when a shark tore into her leg.
Rescuers rushed her to Wolfson Children's Hospital, where she underwent surgery and received 90 stitches to close the wound.
I spoke with Kaley in her hospital room Friday morning. She's a tough kid and has a good sense of humor. She had some pretty deep cuts in her leg, but firefighters were able to stop the bleeding at the beach.

snip

Kaley said she's feeling better every day.
She said after the shark bit her, she ran to shore but then noticed her 6-year-old friend was still in the water, so she got back out there and pulled the girl in. Kaley said she just did what she had to do.
“I thought it was like a crab or something holding onto me, and then I turned around and you could see the back of it thrashing,” Kaley said. “I was like, 'Oh my gosh, that's a shark!' So we all ran in and that little 6-year-old, she wasn't fast enough. She is very skinny, too -- shouldn't have a lot of meat or anything on her. So I was like, 'Oh gosh.' So it kind of freaked me out.
“I wasn't really paying attention to my leg then, so I ran out. She wasn't too far out, but it was close enough to where I probably could have gotten her, so I went and grabbed her, and I ran her up to the beach.”

snip

I asked her if she's planning on going back in the ocean after she's better and out of the hospital.
“I am sure of it,” Kaley said. “It's just my favorite thing to do.”
Dr. George Burgess, one of the world's top shark experts, said, looking at Kaley's wound, it appears the shark that bit her was probably no more than 4 feet long. He's not sure of the species, because the shark didn't leave any teeth behind. Burgess said he plans to follow up with Kaley to learn more about what happened.





I can not imagine this.

thousands of fish die off after hugh blast in China.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/thousands-of-dead-fish-wash-up-on-tianjin’s-shores-a-week-after-the-blasts/ar-BBlXmXA?ocid=ansmsnnews11

gee I wonder what was in those buildings?


Thousands of dead fish have washed up on the shores of the northern Chinese city of Tianjin, eight days after a series of deadly explosions at a warehouse killed at least 114 people, injured hundreds more, and left 69 people, mainly firefighters, still missing.
Photos shared on social media have racked up thousands of views since Thursday and show large numbers of dead fish gathered on the banks of the Haihe River, about four miles from the blast site, reports the state-run newspaper China Daily.

snip

The huge die-off of fish has led residents to worry that toxic chemicals from the blast could have contaminated the waters around the city—the world's tenth largest port.
Chinese authorities have confirmed that the warehouse at the center of the blast stored about 40 different hazardous chemicals—among them were 700 tons of highly-toxic sodium cyanide, the New York Times reports.
But local environmental officials said they found no toxic levels of cyanide in the water where the dead fish appeared, although they were still investigating the precise cause of the mass deaths.
Den Xiaowen, director of the Tianjin Environmental Monitoring Center, said it was not unusual to see large quantities of dead fish in summer.
"When the temperature rises, oxygen will evaporate and fish may die of hypoxia," he said at a press conference Thursday.

snip

Authorities announced Thursday that eight out of 42 water-quality monitoring sites set up around the blast zone detected excessive levels of cyanide, with one site exceeding 356 times the normal level. Clean-up teams have set up quarantined zones to block the cyanide-tainted water and were still working to decontaminate the area, reports the state-linked Global Times.

saw this and thought it was neat.

http://www.gocomics.com/working-daze

Roy and his wife are uber geeks. and die hard trekies ( and star wars, dr who etc)
but Bernie is winning over the geeks as well …..
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