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Comey friend: Here’s what the fired FBI director will — and won’t — reveal in Senate hearing

Comey friend: Here’s what the fired FBI director will — and won’t — reveal in Senate hearingJames Comey’s friend Benjamin Wittes, who made headlines last week when he talked and wrote about Comey, made further comments in an interview today.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 3:50 PM

Teenagers Who Stole Car And Killed 6-Year-Old Boy Charged With Capital Murder

Teenagers Who Stole Car And Killed 6-Year-Old Boy Charged With Capital MurderProsecutors could seek the death penalty in the case.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 11:34 AM

Iran shrugs off Trump threats, missile tests to carry on

Iran shrugs off Trump threats, missile tests to carry  onIran's newly re-elected President Hassan Rouhani ridiculed US strategy in the Middle East, dismissing Donald Trump's summit with Arab leaders as "just a show" and insisting that missile tests will continue. Know that while there is a technical need to conduct missile tests, we will do so and we will ask the permission of no one," Rouhani told reporters in Tehran. "Iran must never be allowed to possess a nuclear weapon -- never ever -- and must cease its deadly funding, training and equipping of terrorists and militias," Trump said in Jerusalem.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 10:45 AM

China warns Taiwan of continued lockout from WHO assembly

China warns Taiwan of continued lockout from WHO assemblyGENEVA (AP) — China's health minister has all but slammed the door on any more participation for Taiwan at the World Health Organization's annual assembly until the island's government accepts the "One China" principle.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 4:03 PM

Flynn will reportedly invoke the Fifth Amendment, not comply with Senate intelligence committee subpoena

Flynn will reportedly invoke the Fifth Amendment, not comply with Senate intelligence committee subpoenaFormer national security adviser Michael Flynn will invoke the Fifth Amendment and not comply with a subpoena from the Senate intelligence committee, a source told AP. Flynn had previously sought immunity from Congress. Campaigning last September, then-presidential candidate Donald Trump made claims about the Fifth Amendment and Hillary Clinton, saying, “the Mob takes the Fifth. If you’re innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?”




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 2:41 PM

Deadly blast at Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England

Deadly blast at Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, EnglandAt least 19 people were killed and more than 50 injured in an explosion at the end of a concert by U.S. singer Ariana Grande in the English city of Manchester on Monday and two U.S. officials said a suicide bomber was suspected.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 10:31 PM

American Doctor, 50, Dies While Trying to Climb Mount Everest

American Doctor, 50, Dies While Trying to Climb Mount EverestTwo years ago, Dr. Roland Yearwood from Alabama, survived an avalanche while climbing Everest.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 8:59 AM

Shelby unveils Super Snake F-150 Pickup with $96,880 price tag

Shelby unveils Super Snake F-150 Pickup with $96,880 price tagAfter all, Shelby is wholly synonymous with the legendary Mustang. Not only has the F-Series been America's favorite truck range for four decades now, the full-size, light-duty F-150 is the biggest-selling vehicle in the United States.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 8:35 AM

Newfound ‘alien megastructure’ star leaves scientists baffled

Newfound ‘alien megastructure’ star leaves scientists baffled

You're forgiven if the name KIC 8462852 doesn't ring a bell. It's a far-off object, thought to be a star, which was only just discovered in late 2015, but it's already managed to totally confuse researchers in its extremely brief stint on the scientific stage. The star has continually exhibited extremely odd behavior, and has been repeatedly observed experiencing huge dips in brightness that don't seem to have any readily available explanation. Now, the star has been spotted performing the same dimming trick as it has in the past, and scientists are throwing out some extremely wild theories. 

KIC 8462852, otherwise known as "Tabby's Star" or "Boyajian's Star" depending on where you look, was caught in the act this past weekend, dimming in brightness by about three percent, which is a large enough change to be easily detected. Normally, the dimming of a star at regular intervals would indicate the presence of a planet in orbit, but there doesn't seem to be any pattern to the of dimming exhibited by KIC 8462852.

Researchers have thrown forth many possible explanations, including other, non-planetary celestial bodies passing in front of the star which are obscuring our line of sight, such as comets, and even the possibility that whatever is floating around the star isn't a naturally-occurring object at all, but instead a massive alien structure. As the research and observations continue, scientists around the globe are hoping that spectral readings will give them a clue as to what, if anything, passed in front of the star. Whatever the object happens to be, it's an exciting time for sky-gazers.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 8:00 PM

Dianne Feinstein: ‘Comey is in no way a nut job’

Dianne Feinstein: ‘Comey is in no way a nut job’Sen. Dianne Feinstein responded to reports that President Trump called former FBI Director James Comey a “nut job” on Sunday: “This is a horrible thing for a president to say.”




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 12:43 PM

Neo-Nazi Connected To Double Murder Arrested After FBI Finds Explosive Materials

Neo-Nazi Connected To Double Murder Arrested After FBI Finds Explosive MaterialsFBI agents found chemicals used to make explosives, Nazi propaganda and a framed picture of the Oklahoma City bomber.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 2:51 PM

Trump budget poised to slash healthcare for poor, other programs

Trump budget poised to slash healthcare for poor, other programsBy Roberta Rampton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House is set to release President Donald Trump's first full budget on Tuesday, a plan that will include a cut of more than $800 billion from the Medicaid program for the poor and reductions in other social spending. The Medicaid cuts were part of a Republican healthcare bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives in early May, which aims to gut the Obama administration's 2010 law that expanded insurance coverage and the government-run Medicaid program. Trump's initial budget outline for discretionary spending received a tepid response from Congress, which controls the purse strings, and, ultimately, government spending.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 2:38 PM

Mother from Peru granted stay from deportation

Mother from Peru granted stay from deportationDENVER (AP) — A mother of two children who sought sanctuary at a Quaker meeting house in Denver to avoid U.S. immigration authorities has been granted a temporary stay from deportation.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 3:48 PM

58,000 Haitians facing deportation get US extension

58,000 Haitians facing deportation get US extensionMore than 58,000 Haitians who stayed in the United States with a special protected status since a catastrophic 2010 earthquake will be allowed to stay another six months, the Department of Homeland Security said Monday. The Haitians were facing orders to return home from July 23 if the department did not renew their so-called Temporary Protected Status, granted after a magnitude 7 earthquake destroyed much of the capital Port-au-Prince on January 12, 2010. Activists had been hoping for a longer extension -- as much as 18 months -- and warned that six months is not long enough for destitute Haiti to prepare for an influx of more than 50,000 people.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 2:14 PM

Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh Carving Found in Looting Hole

Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh Carving Found in Looting HoleEgyptian authorities say they caught looters digging up an ancient stone block carved with an image of a pharaoh. In the city of Abydos, antiquities authorities say they were inspecting an old two-story, mud-brick house when they found that the owner had excavated a hole in the floor. The block was at the bottom of the hole, about 13 feet (4 meters) below the floor, according to an announcement from the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 7:41 AM

Babysitter Charged After Children, 9 and 6 Years Old, Take Her Car And Crash It

Babysitter Charged After Children, 9 and 6 Years Old, Take Her Car And Crash ItThey also found drugs in the car.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 4:09 PM

2018 Volvo XC60: First Drive

2018 Volvo XC60: First DriveThe first member of Volvo's new 60 series has some big shoes to fill, but having the latest semi-autonomous technologies might just make it the safest and most comfortable family car you can buy.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 1:32 PM

'Alt-right' leader loses gym membership after confrontation

'Alt-right' leader loses gym membership after confrontationA leading figure in the "alt-right" movement had his gym membership revoked after a Georgetown University professor confronted him during a workout and called him a neo-Nazi.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 1:16 PM

California Democratic party chairman says 'F*** Donald Trump' in speech

California Democratic party chairman says 'F*** Donald Trump' in speechOutgoing boss John Burton, described by the Los Angeles Times as “a fixture in state Democratic politics for half a century”, grinned as supporters on stage at the party's convention joined him in the gesture. The party's leaders blasted alleged ties to Russia among Mr Trump's associates and presented California as the epicentre of liberal resistance to the President. “The world, literally the world, is counting on all of you, counting on California to reject Trump's deception and destructiveness,” said Lt Gov Gavin Newsom, who is among a crowded field of Democrats running for governor next year.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 8:55 AM

New Details About Aaron Hernandez's Prison Time Emerge

New Details About Aaron Hernandez's Prison Time EmergeHernandez was found dead in his prison cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Massachusetts, April 19.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 2:31 AM

Medicaid cuts coming in Trump budget: Washington Post

Medicaid cuts coming in Trump budget: Washington PostU.S. President Donald Trump's budget proposal, set to be unveiled on Tuesday, will include cuts to Medicaid and propose changes to other assistance programs for low-income citizens, the Washington Post reported on Sunday. The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A Republican healthcare bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives in early May seeks to overhaul the national healthcare system and cut more than $800 billion over the next 10 years from Medicaid, the government health insurance program for the poor and disabled.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 7:15 PM

Justin Trudeau runs past group of prom goers, stops for the ultimate selfie

Justin Trudeau runs past group of prom goers, stops for the ultimate selfieA group of Canadian teenagers got the surprise of their lives while celebrating their prom on Friday when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau jogged past them and then stopped for a selfie.  SEE ALSO: Canada's Justin Trudeau cuddles with baby pandas Trudeau was jogging around the Stanley Park Seawall in Vancouver, British Columbia when he stumbled upon a group of teens dressed up for prom. Adam Scotti — Trudeau's official photographer — captured the moment he ran past the group and posted a series of images in an Instagram gallery. "I always love to watch people's faces as they realise who just ran past, often several paces after he has passed," wrote Scotti on Instagram.  Prom season in #Vancouver pic.twitter.com/pgLUqdkgjd — Adam Scotti  (@AdamScotti) May 20, 2017 Thankfully, it looks like the teens caught Trudeau just in time. They managed to get a selfie with the prime minister, and their prom photographer shared the shot on Instagram.  #VCProm2017 A post shared by Cam Corrado (@crrdo) on May 20, 2017 at 12:33pm PDT That'll be one for the photo album. WATCH: The ultimate hipster bike has arrived, packing a flexible frame that lets you drift




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 5:33 AM

Fresh Venezuela clashes after man set alight

Fresh Venezuela clashes after man set alightDoctors rallied in Venezuela Monday in the latest street protests against President Nicolas Maduro, as a young man lay in hospital after being set on fire by an angry crowd. Three people were killed in violent riots in late president Hugo Chavez's home state of Barinas, bringing the death toll to 51 as the unrest entered its eighth week, the public prosecution service said. An AFP reporter saw demonstrators burn a government office and a police car in the western town of Barinas in the state of the same name.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 9:59 PM

8 Secrets That'll Save You Serious Money At Target

8 Secrets That'll Save You Serious Money At TargetThese tricks will help you cut your grocery bill in half.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 1:21 PM

Police: Man slays neo-Nazi roommates over Islam disrespect

Police: Man slays neo-Nazi roommates over Islam disrespectA Florida man told police he killed his two roommates because they were neo-Nazis who disrespected his recent conversion to Islam, and investigators found bomb-making materials and Nazi propaganda after he led them to the bodies.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 10:10 PM

First US customer gets keys to Lamborghini Centenario

First US customer gets keys to Lamborghini CentenarioOn a sliding scale, collecting a new minivan is probably towards the lower end of excitement levels, while something like a new luxury SUV is probably a lot higher up the scale. The manufacturer has promised all the Centenario's other US buyers will get their cars before the end of this year. The Lamborghini Centenario is a special model produced by the legendary Italian supercar builder to celebrate the 100th birthday of its founder, Ferruccio Lamborghini.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 6:11 AM

Ford Motors' CEO Mark Fields Ousted

Ford Motors' CEO Mark Fields OustedFormer Steelcase chief Jim Hackett, head of Ford Smart Mobility LLC Subsidiary, will replace Fields.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 4:33 AM

Turkey's ruling party elects President Erdogan as leader

Turkey's ruling party elects President Erdogan as leaderISTANBUL (AP) — President Recep Tayyip Erdogan returned as leader of Turkey's ruling party Sunday, pushing back criticism that his tenure has curtailed freedoms and polarized the country as he vowed to serve the nation and combat terror.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 2:07 PM

Parents Arrested After Allegedly Forcing 5-Year-Old To Drink Mouthwash Because He Was Thirsty

Parents Arrested After Allegedly Forcing 5-Year-Old To Drink Mouthwash Because He Was ThirstyTheir kids were reportedly abused all the time.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 1:02 PM

President Mike Pence? Dems should be 'careful what they wish for', experts say

President Mike Pence? Dems should be 'careful what they wish for', experts say‘Mike Pence actually walks the walk’ when it comes to social conservatism, says an analyst. Visitors to officialmikepence.com discover an elaborate spoof website for “Mike Pence: the 46th president of the United States”. If yes, click here.” (It links to hell.com.) A campaign logo refers to Pence and his running mate Christ with crosses and stars.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 7:00 AM

Gambian authorities seize ex-president Jammeh's bank accounts

Gambian authorities seize ex-president Jammeh's bank accountsGambian authorities have seized assets including 86 bank accounts and 131 properties linked to former president Yahya Jammeh, an official said on Monday, as an investigation into the veteran ruler's wealth gathers pace. The new government has accused Jammeh of massive fraud including siphoning off public money during his 22-year rule that ended in election defeat and disgraced exile in Equatorial Guinea in January. Jammeh has been out of contact since leaving for exile and his associates no longer respond to journalists' queries about the accusations against him.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 4:01 PM

Breathtaking photography series showcases beauty of night sky in areas with no light pollution

Breathtaking photography series showcases beauty of night sky in areas with no light pollutionTwo photographers have made a set of images exploring the magnificent night skies still found in North American and the grave threat of light pollution.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 1:26 PM

Philippines' Duterte heads to Russia in blow to US

Philippines' Duterte heads to Russia in blow to USPhilippine President Rodrigo Duterte flew to Russia on Monday to meet his hero, seek arms and steer his nation's foreign policy further away from longtime ally the United States. The five-day trip will cement a dramatic improvement in relations with Russia since Duterte came to power last year and began unravelling his country's decades-long alliances with the United States, which he accuses of hypocrisy and bullying. "Russia must cease to be at the margins of Philippine diplomacy.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 5:16 AM

Big game hunter crushed to death by falling elephant that was fatally shot

Big game hunter crushed to death by falling elephant that was fatally shotTheunis Botha, a trophy hunter, died Friday in Zimbabwe.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 12:26 PM

Everything points to Apple launching new MacBooks next month

Everything points to Apple launching new MacBooks next monthApple will unveil the next big thing for its various software operating systems at WWDC 2017, including iOS 11 and the next macOS major update. But the iPhone maker is also tipped to launch a variety of new products at the show, including the Siri speaker, a 10.5-inch iPad Pro, and new MacBooks. A new report says that Apple is indeed expected to launch new laptops this quarter, and there’s reason to be excited. In a new research note to customers, TrendForce said that notebooks are having a little moment, again. Shipments for the first quarter of the year grew by 6.1% compared to last year, totaling around 37.81 million. That’s a 15.6% decline from the Christmas quarter, but still an impressive result for the period. Apple placed fifth in TrendForce's top, with 3.4 million MacBook laptops shipped during the period — that marks a 15.8% decline compared to the December quarter, but a 15.4% increase compared to last year. TrendForce quotes the MacBook Pro with TouchBar as the device that contributed significantly to the overall shipments. Similarly, the researchers believe the 12-inch MacBook will help Apple ship 10% more laptops in the second quarter of this year than last year. That’s because Apple reportedly plans to launch a new version of the 12-inch MacBook that will feature a new processor. The report notes that promotional pricing for some older models might also be in order. A previous report said that Apple will update the MacBook Pro as well, even if it only launched a new model in late 2016. TrendForce makes no mention of other MacBook updates for the quarter.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 4:09 PM

7 Burning ‘Agents Of SHIELD’ Questions For Season 5

7 Burning ‘Agents Of SHIELD’ Questions For Season 5“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” Season 5 has so many questions to answer about Coulson and the team.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 4:36 PM

3 years after coup, Thailand sees sporadic, unnerving unrest

3 years after coup, Thailand sees sporadic, unnerving unrestBANGKOK (AP) — Three years after military leaders overthrew a democratically elected government in Thailand, the country is sputtering economically, watched closely for its crackdown on political freedom and still the site of sporadic but unnerving unrest.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 9:11 AM

Woman Arrested After Allegedly Macing Employees At Fast-Food Chain Over Stale French Fries

Woman Arrested After Allegedly Macing Employees At Fast-Food Chain Over Stale French FriesA manager was also hit in the face.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 10:54 AM

Saudi Arabia's foreign minister borrows Donald Trump's 'drain the swamp' slogan

Saudi Arabia's foreign minister borrows Donald Trump's 'drain the swamp' sloganSaudi Arabia's foreign minister has borrowed a familiar slogan from Donald Trump to say his country's alliance with the United States would help "drain the swamp" of extremism. Speaking alongside US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Adel al-Jubeir called for an end to antagonism between the US and Saudi Arabia.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 7:06 AM

All The Details About Pippa's Extraordinary Wedding Cake

All The Details About Pippa's Extraordinary Wedding CakeIt sounds absolutely incredible.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 1:20 PM

Over 100 students walked out of a commencement speech in protest of VP Mike Pence

Over 100 students walked out of a commencement speech in protest of VP Mike PenceVice President Mike Pence's commencement address to the University of Notre Dame Class of 2017 didn't go as smoothly as he probably would have liked it to, thanks to protesters who walked out as the vice president began his remarks.  The protest, which was organized by the University of Notre Dame student activist coalition We StaND For, saw over 100 students walking out of the commencement ceremony on Sunday afternoon to a few boos and a few cheers.  SEE ALSO: The most memorable protest signs from Trump's first 100 days With 100+ participants #WalkoutND was a wonderful success. Thank you all for the support! — We StaND For (@WeStandForND) May 21, 2017 According to the Indy Star, students had been planning this act of resistance for weeks, and knew they would not be able to re-enter the ceremony after they left. Following their exit, students gathered and celebrated their graduation outside of the Notre Dame Stadium.  Protesters also lined the streets near the stadium before the ceremony, according to South Bend Tribune, in support of the students.  Those who participated in the walk-out (including audience members) also received support from the folks behind this year's Women's March.  We are so proud of the @NotreDame students who staged #WalkoutND during @VP's commencement speech in protest of the admin's harmful policies — Women's March (@womensmarch) May 21, 2017 “During his time as governor of the state of Indiana and now as a Vice-President, Pence has targeted the civil rights protections of members of LBGT+ community, rejected the Syrian refugee resettlement program, supported an unconstitutional ban of religious minorities, and fought against sanctuary cities,” We StaND For said in a statement provided to conservative website Townhall. “All of these policies have marginalized our vulnerable sisters and brothers for their religion, skin color, or sexual orientation.” Pence has yet to comment on the protest itself.  UPDATE: May 21, 2017, 6:11 p.m. EDT Vice President Mike Pence's press secretary issued a statement on Twitter about Sunday's walk out. "Of 3,200 graduates less than 100 left VP's speech about freedom of speech, expression & thought," Marc Lotter wrote, "but many don't focus on the 97% who stayed." Of 3,200 graduates less than 100 left @VP's speech about freedom of speech, expression & thought, but many don't focus on the 97% who stayed https://t.co/mZNOEN6Xaj — Marc Lotter (@VPPressSec) May 21, 2017 WATCH: Researchers have invented conductive ink used to print solar panels




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 12:36 PM

EU warns France and Spain on deficits, clears Portugal

EU warns France and Spain on deficits, clears PortugalThe EU on Monday kept France and Spain on notice for excessive public spending, but absolved bailed-out Portugal after it stayed within the bloc's deficit limit for the first time since 2007. The European Commission, giving its opinions as part of its annual assessment of EU national budgets, also singled out Italy for running a worryingly high public debt. It said Portugal had left the commission's so-called excessive deficit procedure, becoming the first bailed-out nation from the eurozone debt crisis to fall back into the bloc's economic good graces.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 6:19 AM

Towering Rock Once Hidden Beneath Earth Seen from Space

Towering Rock Once Hidden Beneath Earth Seen from SpaceIt's no wonder this abrupt landform is the center of a Navajo legend involving a giant bird that turned to stone — it's impossible to look at the sheer cliffs without wondering what created them. A new view of Shiprock from space offers a few hints. Leading toward the rugged rock formation in San Juan County is a dark dike, a part of the volcano that created the 1,969-foot-tall (600 meters) cliff formation.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 9:11 AM

Echo Dot, Amazon’s most affordable Alexa speaker, has never been cheaper than it is today

Echo Dot, Amazon’s most affordable Alexa speaker, has never been cheaper than it is today

Amazon's various hardware products go on sale from time to time, but the company often gives shoppers an opportunity to save even more money by purchasing refurbished devices. For example, the $180 Amazon Echo can be had for $135 right now if you buy a refurbished model. Amazon's refurbs are fully protected by warranties, so you really have nothing to lose — and right now there's a sale going on refurbished Echo Dots that drops the device to its lowest price ever. Normally available for a $5 discount, Amazon slashed another $7 off the price of the Echo Dot refurb today. That brings the cost down to just $37.99, which is the lowest price ever.

Here are some key details from Amazon's Echo Dot product page:

  • A Certified Refurbished Echo Dot is refurbished, tested, and certified to look and work like new
  • Echo Dot (2nd Generation) is a hands-free, voice-controlled device that uses Alexa to play music, control smart home devices, make calls, send and receive messages, provide information, read the news, set alarms, read audiobooks from Audible, and more
  • Connects to speakers or headphones through Bluetooth or 3.5 mm stereo cable to play music from Amazon Music, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and TuneIn
  • Introducing Alexa calling and messaging, a new way to be together with family and friends. Just ask Alexa to call or message anyone with an Echo, Echo Dot, or the Alexa App.
  • Controls lights, fans, switches, thermostats, garage doors, sprinklers, locks, and more with compatible connected devices from WeMo, Philips Hue, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, ecobee, and others
  • Hears you from across the room with 7 far-field microphones for hands-free control, even in noisy environments or while playing music
  • Includes a built-in speaker so it can work on its own as a smart alarm clock in the bedroom, an assistant in the kitchen, or anywhere you might want a voice-controlled computer; Amazon Echo is not required to use Echo Dot
  • Always getting smarter and adding new features, plus thousands of skills like Uber, Domino's, and more




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 10:56 AM

Witness key in white Tennessee officer shooting of black man

Witness key in white Tennessee officer shooting of black manNASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Stefanie Fry had finished her lunch break at home and was getting ready to drive back to work in February when she saw two people run by in her rearview mirror.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 5:26 AM

Body identified as missing Duke student

Body identified as missing Duke studentAuthorities said they have found the body of a Duke University student who had been missing for nearly a week.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 11:19 AM

$400 billion price tag for California single-payer bill

$400 billion price tag for California single-payer billSACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A California bill that would eliminate health insurance companies and provide government-funded health coverage for everyone in the state would cost $400 billion and require significant tax increases, legislative analysts said Monday.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 7:05 PM

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus: The final performance

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus: The final performanceWith laughter, hugs and tears — and the requisite death-defying stunts — the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus received its final standing ovation Sunday night as it performed its last show. “We are, forevermore, the Greatest Show on Earth,” boomed Johnathan Lee Iverson, who has been the ringmaster since 1999. It was an emotional 2 1/2 hours for those who worked on the circus.




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 10:03 AM

Trump's Former Ally Roger Stone Slams President Over Saudi Visit

Trump's Former Ally Roger Stone Slams President Over Saudi VisitPresident Donald Trump's former ally, Roger Stone, condemned Trump in a series of tweets Saturday for accepting Saudi Arabia's highest civilian honor.




POSTED MAY 21, 2017 3:08 AM

Sherpas show how the human body can thrive in extreme environments

Sherpas show how the human body can thrive in extreme environmentsMount Everest is a grueling, deadly place for many adventurers. Beyond the steep terrain, bone-chilling temperatures, and fierce weather, the air is so thin that your body can begin to shut down. That is, unless you're a Sherpa. Members of the Nepalese ethnic group have evolved over generations to withstand the oxygen-deprived atmosphere high in the Himalayas, a new study found.  SEE ALSO: Now you can climb Mount Everest in VR Sherpas are, biologically speaking, extremely efficient at producing the energy they need to reach such heights, even where oxygen is scarce, according to research published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.  Their cells are akin to fuel-efficient cars that can travel farther on less fuel. A porter fetches the ladders to help fix the route for climbers attempting to reach the summit of Mount Everest.Image: Tashi Sherpa/AP/REX/ShutterstockScientists say the findings not only help explain Sherpas' mountain-climbing prowess — they may also lead to new ways of treating oxygen deficiencies, called "hypoxia," in hospital patients. "By understanding how Sherpas are able to survive with low levels of oxygen, we can get clues to help us identify those at greatest risk in [intensive care units] and inform the development of better treatments to help in their recovery," Michael Grocott, a co-author of the study and professor at the University of Southampton in England, said in a press release.  Grocott is the chair of Xtreme Everest, a 10-year-old initiative by doctors, nurses, and scientists to study how our bodies respond to the extreme altitude on Mount Everest. Their ultimate goal is to improve outcomes for critically ill patients. With a 29,029-foot-high peak, Everest is the world's highest mountain. Everest Base Camp is around 17,600 feet, which is plenty high enough to sicken unadjusted visitors. An aerial photograph of Everest Base Camp.Image: Paula Bronstein/Getty ImagesAt those altitudes, where oxygen is scarce, the body is forced to work overtime to make sure the brain and body receive enough oxygen to function. Often, the body will produce more red blood cells, which carry blood to our organs and thicken the blood. As a result, blood flows more slowly and blood vessels are prone to tightening, which can cause dangerous build-up of fluid in the lungs and other risks. Mountain climbers can combat this by bringing oxygen supplies and ascending slowly, giving their bodies time to adjust. Sherpas, however, don't need such a boost.  Previous studies have shown that Sherpas produce fewer red blood cells at higher altitudes. They also produce higher levels of nitric oxide, a chemical that opens blood vessels and keeps blood flowing, which in turn gives them more energy to climb. Sherpas' remarkable physical skills, along with their local expertise, have made them the go-to guides and porters for international expeditions. It's an imperfect arrangement, however. Nepalese guides in recent years have protested poor pay and unsafe working conditions, and in 2014, they went on strike after 16 colleagues were killed in an avalanche. People attend a prayer service in New York City for Sherpa victims of the April 18, 2014, avalanche on Mt. Everest.Image: eric thayer/Getty ImagesFor Monday's study, a research team led by scientists at the University of Cambridge followed 15 Sherpas and 10 "lowlanders" — researchers living in non-high altitude areas — as they gradually ascended to the base camp. The lowlanders took samples, including blood and muscle biopsies, at three different times: in London, for the baseline measurement; upon arrival to base camp; and after two months working at base camp.  They compared those samples to those of the Sherpas, all of whom lived in relatively low-lying areas, and none of whom were "elite" high-altitude climbers. Sherpas' baseline measurements were taken in Kathmandu, Nepal. At baseline, Sherpas' mitochondria — the parts of human cells that respire to generate energy — were already more efficient at using oxygen to produce ATP than those of lowlanders, the samples revealed. ATP, or molecule adenosine triphosphate, is the energy that powers our bodies. A porter walks with a massive load towards Everest Base Camp near Lobuche, Nepal.Image: Tashi Sherpa/AP/REX/ShutterstockSherpas' measurements hardly changed once they reached the base camp, suggesting they were born with such biological traits. Lowlanders, meanwhile, saw their measurements change as their bodies acclimatized and began to mimic the Sherpas'. After two months at camp, Sherpas also produced more phosphocreatine, an energy reserve that acts as a buffer to help muscles contract when no ATP is available. Lowlanders, by contrast, saw their phosphocreatine levels crash.  And, unlike lowlanders, Sherpas did not experience a rapid increase in free radicals, which are molecules created by a lack of oxygen that can potentially damage cells and tissues. "Sherpas have spent thousands of years living at high altitudes, so it should be unsurprising that they have adapted to become more efficient at using oxygen and generating energy," Andrew Murray, the study's senior author and a senior lecturer at the University of Cambridge, said in the press release.  "When those of us from lower-lying countries spend time at high altitude, our bodies adapt to some extent to become more 'Sherpa-like', but we are no match for their efficiency," he said. WATCH: Drone captures breathtaking footage of Norwegian mountains




POSTED MAY 22, 2017 5:49 PM

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