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Member since: Sat Aug 28, 2010, 11:23 AM
Number of posts: 3,170

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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.


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.


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.


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.”


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.


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.


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.


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.


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 …..

I can't breath - please don't kill me - Dallas PD kills a man seeking help.


DALLAS – James Hutcheson has many questions about why his brother died in a deadly scuffle in the Dallas County jail lobby.
His latest question: Why did the sheriff's department wait so long to put six staff members involved in the incident on restricted duty?
"You would think that would have happened on day one," he said. "I don't understand. It's like the whole thing it's been nothing but a cover up."


James Hutcheson, his mother, and his brother's wife spoke out during an emotional press conference Friday, demanding the release of video surveillance footage from the fatal confrontation on August 1.
Dallas County Sheriff's Office officials have yet to respond to a request to explain why there was lag time in putting those involved in the confrontation with Joseph Hutcheson on restricted duty, but clearly pressure is beginning to build on Sheriff Lupe Valdez.
News 8 has learned that several members of the LBGT community have reached out to one of the civil right activists involved in the protests and ask that he back off of criticizing the sheriff. Valdez is the first openly-gay elected sheriff in the state.
Hutcheson's brother, Joseph, ran into the jail lobby on Aug. 1, screaming for help. Sheriff's officials say his behavior was erratic and strange, so they restrained and handcuffed the unarmed man.


But witnesses interviewed by News 8 that day say the deputies stepped over the line.
"They had him on the ground trying to get him handcuffed," said April Berryhill, a witness. "They got him handcuffed, and one of the jailers had his knee blocking [Joseph Hutcheson's] airway. In between the breaths, the man is going, 'I can't breathe. I'm sorry. Please don't kill me.' Then you didn't hear anything from him anymore."
Berryhill says Joseph Hutcheson turned blue and urinated on himself. At one point, she approached an officer, telling him that it didn't look like Joseph Hutcheson was breathing.
"He said, 'Oh, he's faking it,'" Berryhill said, adding that it took about 20 minutes before medical assistance was provided.


Joseph Hutcheson's brother says that knowing that he died on a jail lobby floor just breaks his heart. The family believes that Joseph was having a medical emergency. They say the night before he had gone to Parkland Hospital because he was having chest pains. It is not clear if he was seen by medical staff.
The sheriff's department has refused to release footage of the incident, saying it would taint witnesses who they have yet to interview.
James Hutcheson questions why they would still need to be interviewing people. He questions why they would not have gathered witnesses up that day and interviewed them immediately.

more at the link ….
sounds like the cover up in in full mode to protect
the guilty.

also WTF does the sheriff's sexual orientation have to do with anything?
because the sheriff is gay , they get a pass?

Lovely Zimmerman in the news again.

I am not sure this is going to end well ….


seems he is teaming up the anti muslim zone gun shop owner.

my prediction based upon what I saw last night

Trump / Cruz

I might be wrong … I have been wrong before.
but I think it could go that way.

whats for Dinner Tuesday Aug 3

Ok I will start … mostly cuz my wife turned out such a wonderful meal.
had spaghetti squash with meat sauce using sweet Italian sausage
sans casing.
with a slice of garlic bread. OMG it was sooo good .

has someone in SF been watching "naked gun" ? LOL


(CNN)Janitors everywhere are rejoicing.
San Francisco city officials are implementing a new "pee-proof" paint around the city to combat the persistent problem of public urination.
Public Works crews have painted 10 walls in the city with a special UV-coated, urine-repellent paint, according to CNN affiliate KPIX.
Public Works Director Mohammed Nuru was inspired by a project in Hamburg, Germany, where walls in a night club district were coated with the liquid-repellent paint.

If an offender tries to urinate on a wall coated with the super hydrophobic paint, the urine, instead of running down the wall, will spray back at the person relieving himself, potentially hitting his clothes or shoes.
Public urination has been a chronic issue in San Francisco for a long time. In 2002, the city passed legislation banning public urination and imposing a $50 to $100 fine for offenders, but the ban has had little to no impact on the problem.
Since the beginning of January, Public Works has had about 375 requests to steam clean urine from various areas in the city. The hope is that the new "pee-proof" paint will help quell some of the city's hottest urinating zones.

more at the link
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