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Sherman A1

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Gender: Male
Current location: U.S.
Member since: Sat May 13, 2006, 07:37 AM
Number of posts: 38,958

Journal Archives

Netflix to increase subscription prices

The streaming video company said Monday that it planned to increase subscription prices for new customers by one or two dollars a month within the next few months. Existing subscribers will be able to continue at their current rate "for a generous time period," Netflix (NFLX) said.

U.S. streaming subscribers currently pay $7.99 a month, a plan introduced back in 2010. The company raised monthly fees for new subscribers in Ireland by one euro back in January, a change that it said had "limited impact."

"If we want to continue to expand, to do more great original content... we have to eventually increase prices a little bit," Netflix (NFLX) CEO Reed Hastings said in a conference call with analysts Monday.

The news came as part of Netflix's first-quarter earnings announcement. Shares surged 6.6% in after-hours trading Monday, after another quarter of strong subscription growth and earnings that came in ahead of analyst expectations.


UAW drops NLRB case to organize Volkswagen

The United Auto Workers has dropped its challenge of a vote to organize workers at Volkswagen's only U.S. plant that went against the union.

The National Labor Relations Board was set to start a hearing Monday on the UAW's complaint that Republican politicians improperly interfered before the Feb. 14 vote at the Chattanooga, Tenn. plant, which the union lost 712 to 626.

But the union issued a statement Monday saying it was dropping its appeal because fighting the election through the NLRB could have dragged on for years.

"The UAW is ready to put February's tainted election in the rear-view mirror," said UAW President Bob King in a statement.


Zoo Museum Board member's company wins Science Center contract

ST. LOUIS • The St. Louis Science Center has awarded a building design contract worth tens of thousands of dollars to a board member of the regional Zoo-Museum District, which sends the Science Center $10 million a year in tax money.

Pat Whitaker, founder and chairman of the area design and architecture firm Arcturis, publicly disclosed Monday that Arcturis had won a contract to design a $1.2 million to $2.5 million pavilion at the center. Whitaker said the team would earn 10 percent of that, and Arcturis’ share should be $45,000 to $100,000.

Other Zoo-Museum District directors immediately denounced Whitaker’s dual role and questioned why she hadn’t recused herself from a vote last month setting the preliminary tax rate for the Science Center. Some called on her to step down.

“If you knew you had a bid out, to me that’s a conflict right there,” said board member Gloria Wessels. “It invites a lack of public trust in the eyes of the taxpayer.”


Looks like a conflict of interest to me, but just my opinion.

Remembering Bloody Ludlow – One Hundred Years On

On the morning of April 20, 1914, agents of the Baldwin-Felts detective agency along with Colorado national guardsmen massed on a ridge overlooking a tent city of hundreds of coal miners and their families that occupied the plain below – roughly a half mile from the village of Ludlow, Colorado. They came armed, with some men on horseback but with others setting up machine gun positions able to sweep over the encampment. Inside the thin cotton tents some 1200 men, women and children stirred and began their day as they had throughout the preceding months. during one of the coldest Colorado winters in recent memory.

The miners and their families had been living in the tents since John D. Rockefeller’s Colorado Coal and Fuel company along with 2 other coal operators had thrown them out of company houses in September of the previous fall. The companies had refused the demands of the miners and a strike/lockout had begun. The coal companies had hoped the brutal cold and isolation of the winter would break the striker’s resolve and end the confrontation.

Throughout the cold months, there had been skirmishes, with the Baldwin-Felts agents firing shots into the camp, wounding and on occasion killing strikers. With the arrival of spring, it became apparent that the miners and their families would be able to hold out for much longer, perhaps indefinitely.

The morning had begun with the strike’s organizer, Louis Tikas, being lured out of the camp to a meeting with the militia’s leader on the pretext of negotiating the release of two men who were supposedly wanted by authorities Tikas, who had dealt with the captain many times before, sensed something amiss during the meeting and cut it short, rushing back to his people in the tent city. As he returned, the Baldwin-Felts agents opened fire, sending a terrifying hail of soft-point bullets ripping through the fabric of the tents. So began the bloodiest and deadliest labor battle America has ever seen.


Whole Foods store to convert waste to fertilizer

Whole Foods Market’s store in Bellevue, Wash., is expected to announce an agreement to deploy a new processor that turns food waste into organic fertilizer to be sold to farmers and consumers.

The WISErg Harvester unit, a composter built by Redmond, Wash,-based WISErg, is to be installed at a Whole Foods’ store in Bellevue, Wash., in early May. The unit will enable the store to reduce food waste in a sustainable way, and provide data reports to help the store better manage perishable inventory, WISErg said.

In addition to recycling food scraps, reducing waste and decreasing shrinkage, the store will sell WISErganic organic liquid fertilizer.

“Our partnership with WISErg is another example of our commitment to the community and the environment,” Dena Hastings, regional green mission specialist for Whole Foods, said in a statement. “We can help to create a virtuous circle of food consumption and production, with nearby growers using organic fertilizer made from food scraps that originate in our store.”

Read More: http://supermarketnews.com/sustainability/whole-foods-store-convert-waste-fertilizer-video#ixzz2zbGUSD85

Chicago Unions Divided Over Emanuel’s Move To Gut Pensions

Faced with a debt crisis eerily reminiscent of Detroit’s financial straits, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel now wants to slash retirement benefits for city workers, who have already seen their pension funds erode from decades of mismanagement and delayed payments.

Because the state government has control over Chicago public worker pensions, Emanuel’s first fund-cutting measures have surfaced in the form of proposed legislation. Last week, Emanuel announced a proposal to cut city employee retirement funds; longtime House Speaker Mike Madigan (D-Chicago) then wrote it into Senate Bill 1922.

And on Tuesday, the Illinois legislature passed that bill, which calls for a combination of raised revenue streams and benefit cuts to ensure that the city’s retirement system for municipal employees and laborers—just 35 percent funded today—will be 90 percent funded by 2055. The proposal would affect the pensions of 56,000 city workers affiliated with 31 different unions.

Despite the hit to their members’ pensions, 28 out of those 31 unions support the bill.


Extremists in Missouri House narrowly vote to send paycheck deception bill to Senate

Jefferson City – Despite overwhelming testimony about its negative consequences, extremists in the Missouri House voted to send HB1617, a paycheck deception measure, to the Senate by a narrow margin of 83 to 69.

The bill is similar to SB29, which was vetoed by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon last year. Unlike last year’s version, however, this bill contains ballot referral language to put the measure on the August ballot. Just as in last year’s legislation, HB1617 seeks to shut hardworking public workers – with the exception of first responders such as police and fire fighters –out of the political process – and to take away their voice on the job.

Sponsored by Rep. Holly Rehder (R-Sikeston), HB 1617 would require public sector workers to give annual written permission for union dues to be taken out of their paychecks.

The bill would also require similar approval for unions to spend worker fees on political activities.


Chikungunya, A highly infectious, mosquito borne disease may soon arrive in US

When Clare Rourke woke up one morning last March with a sore toe, she didn’t worry too much about it. Rourke, her husband and their three daughters were living in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, for a few months as part of a family year abroad. She and her husband had traveled widely, through India, the Middle East and South America, and had never been seriously ill. And they took necessary precautions, making sure everyone in the family received the recommended vaccinations.

But by the middle of that day, Rourke was sicker than she’d ever been. “I hurt in so many places — my feet, hand, wrists, ankles, elbows, knees,” she says now. “I actually remember thinking that I just might die.” Her joints were so swollen, hot and painful that she couldn’t rest her elbows on the bed. Her fever rose to 104. “I felt like something was attacking me and I was seriously losing the fight,” she says. That night, two of her daughters also became achy and feverish, and within a few days all three had rashes on their hands, legs and arms. They were infected with chikungunya, a virus originally from Central Africa.

The virus, transmitted by mosquito bites, was rampaging through Rourke’s village as part of an outbreak that has stretched across the Indian Ocean, India and Southeast Asia since 2005. Now, it is roaring through the Western Hemisphere. In December 2013, the first locally transmitted case of chikungunya in the Americas was identified on the Caribbean island of St. Martin. As of mid-April, more than 25,000 cases had been reported across the region, from the Dominican Republic down to French Guiana, on the north coast of South America.

Public health officials suspect the virus may already be in Puerto Rico, and they predict it will make the leap to the continental United States within months. “There’s nothing to stop this outbreak from continuing to spread,” says Lyle Petersen, director of the division of vector-borne diseases of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The virus is likely to escalate this summer, when the Caribbean rainy season sets in and mosquito populations climb. Chikungunya seems poised to join a handful of tropical diseases — including dengue, Chagas’ disease and West Nile — that are spreading across the southern United States.


Airlines Brace for New Rules on Pilot Rest Periods

New federal regulations governing pilot rest time and consecutive hours of flight took effect Saturday, leading airlines to brace for a potential increase in delays and cancellations, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Pilots must have a minimum of 10 hours to rest between each shift, and eight of those hours must be uninterrupted sleep. Before, pilots could spend that time showering, eating or commuting between the airport and hotel.

Pilots will be limited to flying no more than eight or nine hours, depending on when their shift starts, and each week must have 30 consecutive hours of rest.

Regional pilots, who often have a more demanding schedule and tend to fly shorter segments at odd hours of day and night, have a "sliding-scale" of maximum hours and can be set as low as nine hours a day, a considerable drop from the previous max of 14.


Navy Okays Changes to Submariner's Sleep Patterns

With no sunlight to set day apart from night on a submarine, the U.S. Navy for decades has staggered sailors' working hours on schedules with little resemblance to life above the ocean's surface.

Research by a Navy laboratory in Groton, Conn. is now leading to changes for the undersea fleet. Military scientists concluded submarine sailors, who traditionally begin a new workday every 18 hours, show less fatigue on a 24-hour schedule, and the Navy has endorsed the findings for any skippers who want to make the switch.

The first submarine to try the new schedule on a full deployment was the USS Scranton, led by Cmdr. Seth Burton, a cancer survivor. He said the illness he experienced as a junior officer helped convince him of the health benefits of keeping a sleep pattern in line with the body's natural rhythm.

"I know that there's lots of medical side effects to just not having a good, regular sleep pattern," said Burton, 41, of Huntsville, Ala.

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