Friday, August 12, 2011
Social Security and Medicare are not entitlement programs. Both are insurance plans paid for by its participants. Medicaid, on the other hand is welfare. People on welfare do not contribute to the program. Welfare was originally designed to assist people who fall on hard times through “no fault of their own”. Most of today’s welfare recipients, however, make a conscious choice to go on the public dole. A young couple would be foolish to get married and lose all the benefits a single mother can obtain. Now you know how those welfare mothers can afford G-4 cell phones, custom nails and newer model cars. The ticket to getting free housing, food, clothing, shelter and healthcare is being single and getting pregnant. Abusive boyfriends and or the fathers come along for the free ride.
Medicaid accounts for 25% of most State budgets and matched by the Federal Government who collects State revenues to pay its share. In other words, State governments now spend approximately 50% of their entire budgets on dead beat non-producing citizens. Single unwed mothers get the bulk of these “entitlements” for simply practicing unprotected sex and having multiple births with numerous men. In fact, China and hard working American taxpayers are paying the bills for unwed mothers and their offspring. Biological fathers rarely are made to pay child support.
40% of all births in the United States are to unwed mothers. Florida’s rate is 43%. 73% of black babies are born to single unwed mothers. 85% of all prison inmates come from single unwed mothers. 50% of all children attending public schools get subsidized breakfasts. China had it right when it recently admonished us for our social welfare programs. We have become a third rate debtor nation.
A guest article.
She admitted two charges of sexually touching a female aged under 16, one count of sexual assault by penetration and engaging in sexual activity with the girl while in a position of trust.
The offences happened over a seven month period between December 2005 and July 2006.
Geography teacher Harrison of Rendlesham near Woodbridge, Suffolk, sobbed throughout the hearing at Ipswich Crown Court.
Judge David Goodin told her that a prison sentence could not be ruled out. She was bailed for reports and will be sentenced on September 2.
Richard Atchley, defending, said: "This is an unusual and sad case. This does not necessarily mean a custodial sentence."
Harrison also taught at Otley College, an agricultural training centre near Ipswich after leaving her school in Colchester.
She was suspended from her job as director of progression at Suffolk One after being arrested and resigned on July 20 the day before she was due to face disciplinary proceedings. (more)
The oversight was an expensive one that has the family fuming, reports CBS 2’s Sean Hennessey.
“I don’t have to be traumatized like this. Nobody should have to be traumatized,” Suri Steinberger said.
Suri and Peter Steinberger are livid after what they call an over-reaction by customs agents at Newark Liberty Airport. They were told they had violated a federal crime — forgetting about an apple, a tomato and three cucumbers in their son’s backpack.
“For me it was like, you know, what you see on TV. I thought I was going to get handcuffed, they have my kids. So I just started to cry,” Suri Steinberger said.
The run-in with Customs agents happened Thursday at the end of a long trip from Israel. Suri packed the vegetables as snack for her boys.
“Let them eat it on the plane instead of eating garbage,” Suri said. (more)
The drunken JetBlue passenger who treated a sleeping 11-year-old girl like his personal potty is a member of the US Ski Team who refused to apologize yesterday for the high-altitude humiliation.
Robert "Sandy" Vietze, 18, is among the 75 most elite skiers in the nation -- but he may have blown his chance to compete in the 2014 Winter Games in Russia.
His name was bumped from the team's developmental roster yesterday afternoon, although officials refused to comment about his status.
The leaky loser expressed no remorse outside his family's palatial Vermont home, where he ignored questions about the incident and showed no interest in apologizing to his victim.
"We have no comment, nothing to say," snapped Vietze's mother, Abigail, as they hauled luggage and ski equipment from a gray BMW.
Vietze had taken the red-eye flight from Portland, Ore., to JFK Wednesday on his way home from a weeklong training camp with the US Ski Team at Mount Hood in Oregon.
It was lousy luck for his young victim, who was flying with her sister and cancer-stricken father on a trip to see her grandmother on eastern Long Island for the first time since his diagnosis.
Soon after takeoff, Vietze stumbled from his seat five rows behind the child and emptied his bladder onto the girl, who was briefly left alone while her dad and sister were in restrooms.
"I was drunk, and I did not realize I was pissing on her leg," the 6-foot-4, 195-pound Vietze later told cops, according to law-enforcement sources.
The girl's father, a Stage 4 cancer patient, caught Vietze midstream and tried to wipe him out.
"F- -k that kid. I don't want him near my family!" he yelled. (more)
Sometimes we wonder if a category for "complete fools" isn't in order...
The Rockford Register Star reports that city officials and ComEd crews have already removed more than a third of the targeted streetlights.
Alderman Linda McNeely says some residents are unhappy with the plan. She says they're complaining that it is too dark to see anything when they come home at night.
Marcy Leach is Rockford's engineering operations manager, and she says the city spent hundreds of hours determining which lights to remove to make sure adequate light remains.
Leach says the Public Works Department is working with the Rockford police to make sure safety is maintained. (source)
But after building more than 170 F-22 Raptors and a handful of F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, not a single one is available for service. The Air Force currently has zero flyable stealth fighters. None.
The vaunted F-22 has been grounded with a possible faulty oxygen system since May. Production of the last few Raptors is even on hold, because the jets can’t fly from the factory.
Last week, test flights for the newer F-35 were suspended, too, because of a valve problem in the plane’s integrated power package. It’s the third time this year that JSFs have been forbidden to fly. Ground tests have resumed, and flight tests may resume as early as next week. Then again, they may not.
Yesterday, the U.S. military committed to spending another $535 million to buy 38 more Joint Strike Fighters — a family of stealth jets that are supposed to become the multipurpose, affordable workhorses of tomorrow’s fleet. Ninety percent of America’s combat aviation power is eventually supposed to come from the jets’ three variants.
But the jets have been anything but cheap. The current cost for the JSF program is $382 billion and rising for more than 2,400 aircraft. No wonder just about every major deficit reduction plan scales back the JSF effort in some way.
And, at the moment, they’re not producing any combat power, either. (more)
Chief Constable Andy Trotter of the British Transport Police said the sophisticated software was being used to help find those suspected of being involved in the worst unrest London has seen in a generation.
But he cautioned that facial recognition makes up only a fraction of the police force's efforts, saying tips have mostly come from traditional sources, such as still images captured from closed circuit cameras, pictures gathered by officers, footage shot by police helicopters or images snapped by members of the public. One department was driving around a large video screen displaying images of suspects.
"There's a mass of evidence out there," Trotter said in a telephone interview. "The public are so enraged that people who wouldn't normally come forward are helping us - especially when they see their neighbors are coming back with brand new TVs."
Prime Minister David Cameron acknowledged Thursday that police were overwhelmed by rioting that began over the weekend in London and spread across the country over four days. Mobs of youths looted stores, set buildings aflame and attacked police officers and other people - a chaotic and humbling scene for a city a year away from hosting the Olympic Games. (more)
The middle class 'rioters' revealed: The millionaire's daughter, the aspiring musician and the organic chef all in the dock
The goods were allegedly found in a car being driven by Miss Johnson after a branch of Comet in Charlton, south-east London, was raided.
Bexleyheath magistrates heard that a 'public order kit' of balaclava, gloves and a bandana was also found in the car.
Miss Johnson attended St Olave's Grammar School in Orpington, Kent, the fourth best performing state school in the country, after transferring from its sister school Newstead Wood.
She achieved A*s in French, English literature, classical civilisation and geography A-levels, and is now studying English and Italian at Exeter University.
Her parents, Robert and Lindsay Johnson, live in a large detached farmhouse in Orpington. It has extensive grounds and a tennis court. They sold their previous house, near Greenwich, for £930,000 in 2006.
Miss Johnson's parents, who supported her in court, run Avongate, a direct marketing company.
Her father is a businessman with directorships in several companies. He was a director in a company that took over the Daily Sport and Sunday Sport newspapers in 2007. (more)
Under the current Illinois Safe Haven Law parents can relinquish unharmed newborns up to 30 days old at hospitals, emergency medical care facilities, police or fire stations. The law Quinn signed Thursday now includes college or university police stations and Illinois State Police district headquarters.
University of Illinois at Chicago police lieutenant Tony Brown suggested the idea.
“We serve a population that is often immature and inexperienced and they make decisions that are often not the best decision and they make them quickly sometimes,” Brown said.
State officials say 64 newborns have been relinquished at safe havens in Illinois since 2001. Statistics show 44 percent of unplanned pregnancies occur between the ages of 18 and 24. That's why college police stations were included in the safe haven list. (more)
West Allis police said Thursday the teen was arrested late Wednesday. The Milwaukee teen was booked on suspicion of attempted robbery and robbery. Police recommend that he face additional penalties for hate crimes.
Police say the teen told investigators whites were chosen because he considered them "easy targets."
On opening night of the fair last week, 31 people were arrested and at least 11 people were hurt. The West Allis Police Department has said race was a factor in the 11 violent incidents it's investigating. (more)
The committee’s oversight field hearing, scheduled for August 17 at 9:00 a.m. at the Maui Beach Hotel, will focus on “Strengthening Self-Sufficiency: Overcoming Barriers to Economic Development in Native Communities.”
Rick Manning from Americans for Limited Government, which first discovered the hearing, told TheDC it’s unbelievable that Hill staffers talking about fiscal responsibility would waste money on a trip to Maui.
“It’s outrageous that Senate Democrats have so little respect for the American taxpayer that in the same month they buried our credit rating, they’re heading to Hawaii to celebrate,” Manning said. (more)
Police in Spring Hill arrested a local music teacher Thursday morning after he was caught engaging in a sex act with a doll outside a local elementary school.
Officers were called to Allendale Elementary School on Prescott Way in Spring Hill amid reports of a white male with a duffle bag under a bridge on school property. The bridge provides access to the school from the main road.
Spring Hill police told Nashville's News 2 the responding officer witnessed the man, identified as 56-year-old Daniel Torroll, performing sex acts on a child-like doll police later discovered he'd cut holes into.
The officer reported the man was naked and in a location where he could be seen by people driving up to the school.
"I happened to be there I didn't know it was school property. I wouldn't be there if I knew it was school property," Torroll told Nashville's News 2.
Authorities took Torroll into custody and charged him with public indecency, a misdemeanor.
He was issued a citation and ordered to stay off school property. He was not booked into the Williamson County jail.
According to Torroll, he suffers from an attention deficit disorder which he says affects his inability to resist certain sexual impulses, though none of which involve children.
"[Police] came here and looked [through my home]. There was nothing here. There was no child porn. I have two kids myself," he said. (more)
Illinois officials sent a letter to more than 600 funeral directors around the state to let them know there's no money for funerals for individuals on public assistance.
"We got that letter," said Jonathon Szykowny, owner and director of Szykowny Funeral Home. "I'm extremely upset by it. ... I would be very concerned that during extreme economic times that some families can't provide the necessary funds to bury their loved ones. Sometimes God doesn't call during the best economic times and families can't afford to pay for a funeral and need help"
In the past, the state has reserved about $13 million to help pay for an estimated 12,000 funerals for individuals who relied on public aid. Participating funeral homes were allotted $1,100 for funerals and $552 for the burial. (more)
It's putting a lot of strain on the Public Works Department.
"If we don't have replacements, we'll probably barricade them and secure the holes to make it as safe as possible," said Steve Craig with Tumwater Public Works.
The grates are heavy enough that it's likely at least a two-man job.
"The reports are that they are wearing orange safety vests like construction workers would wear and really you wouldn't think twice about it," Craig said. The men may have been driving a light blue older Chevy or Ford style pickup.
The thieves might be aiming to recycle the grates for money, but local recyclers say there is no way they would accept storm grates. And even so, they're not worth that much.
"Normally we have a 1,000 pound minimum before we pay," said Tom Grywusiewicz with South Sound Recycling. "It usually starts at about $200 a ton."
Each grate weighs about 110 pounds. That would make it worth about $11.
Anyone with information about the thefts is asked to call the Tumwater Police Department or 911. (source)
Sgt. Jody Tittle said police were called to a residence around 8:25 a.m. on reports that the family's black Labrador retriever had the hand in its mouth.
Police searched with the assistance of Border Patrol search dogs for about 21/2 hours before coming upon the body of a man near a canal.
Tittle said the body appeared to have been there two to three weeks, and that the man's clothing had paperwork leading officials to believe he was an immigrant.
Tittle said police were reaching out to the Mexican consulate for help identifying the body.
The case was being treated as a homicide pending an autopsy, Tittle said.
He said the body was found along a rural route that led back about a mile to the Rio Grande. (source)
What, you didn’t hear about this incident in the media? For those of you that need more proof that journalism is dead, read on.
Monday was another beautiful day for a mainstream media cover-up in Chicago. But it would not have been complete without a picnic-basket full of hypocrisy from our very own U.S. Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois.
You may remember Dick.
He’s the Senator that hysterically compared the treatment of the Gitmo detainees to Nazis, Soviet gulags, and Pol Pot. While calling for an end to “hateful” rhetoric, he’s the one who wrongfully pointed his crooked finger at the Tea Party Movement and Gov. Sarah Palin, blaming them for the Tucson massacre and the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Recently, he’s the one that, hypocritically, accused the Tea Party Republicans of “political extortion” in the debt ceiling debate. (more)
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary index of consumer sentiment slumped to 54.9 from 63.7 the prior month. The gauge was projected to decline to 62, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey.
The biggest one-week slump in stocks since 2008 and the threat of default on the nation’s debt may have exacerbated consumers’ concerns as unemployment hovers above 9 percent and companies are hesitant to hire. Rising pessimism poses a risk household spending will cool further, hindering a recovery that Federal Reserve policy makers said this week was already advancing “considerably slower” than projected.
“The mood is very depressed,” said Chris Christopher, an economist at IHS Global Insight Inc. in Lexington, Massachusetts. “Consumers are very fatigued and very uncertain. In the short term, people are going to pull back on spending.” (more)
The agreement calls for $2.4 trillion in spending cuts over ten years. A bipartisan committee was tasked with coming up with another $1.5 trillion in cuts by November.
Considering that the 2011 deficit will be over $1.4 trillion, and the national debt is over $14 trillion, these cuts, if ever realized, are modest, to say the least.
Obama hailed this compromise as “an important first step.” Many others saw it as the latest example of the growing financial and political paralysis of the United States. The budget deal merely curbs runaway government spending; it does not reduce it.
As of now, it appears that the heaviest cuts would fall on the social services Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. In other words, the poor and elderly are to bear the brunt of budget reductions. More guns, less butter.
Fifty million Americans rely on Medicaid for health care; 44 million Americans rely on government food assistance.
Not surprisingly, America’s left is fuming with indignation. The right is crowing. (more)
Dynamic, optimistic, high-tech South Korea is flying at Mach 9: it reminds me of Japan 25 years ago.
The other 24 million Koreans in the northern part of this divided nation are in deep trouble. Many go hungry or subsist on the verge of starvation, victims of the whims of their bizarre Communist monarchy.
In 1950, North Korea, backed by the Soviet Union and, later, China, invaded US-occupied South Korea. Three years of bitter fighting, in which over 2.5 million Korean civilians died, resulted in a stalemate.
An armistice stopped the fighting on the 38th parallel, but the two Koreas and Americans remain on hair trigger alert. A Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) bisects the peninsula: on either side, 750,000 North Korean soldiers face 500,000 South Korean, backed by 37,000 US troops.
Tension on the DMZ is electric. North and South Korea troops glare at one another from fortified field works and observation posts. The world’s thickest minefields and high anti-tank walls extend from coast to coast.
I was warned that even pointing at the North Koreans could trigger a firefight that might lead to full-scale war. (more)
New models, such as Apple’s top-selling iPhone and the Samsung Galaxy S2, offer sophisticated “third-generation” (3G) technology to allow access to high speed networks, email and the internet, but the new Ofcom study found that starting and completing calls made from rural areas was better on older 2G phones. These devices, called feature phones rather than smartphones, allow more internal space for aerials.
Ofcom found that “in the more rural areas that the phones were tested, the feature/entry-level phones generally returned somewhat better performance than smartphones for call completion and call setup.”
The regulator suggested that “This may be due to the reduced complexity of antenna on these devices and 2G phones not having issues in switching between 2G and 3G networks.”
Quality of sound was found to be the same between devices, however. Ofcom carried out its research to assess whether consumers were being properly informed about mobile network coverage. It found that, while individual phone companies provided valuable network maps, just three out of every ten consumers consulted them. The regulator wants to encourage shops to inform customers about coverage when they’re buying mobile phones, and it also wants different networks to standardise their information so that consumers can compare services across providers.
Ofcom’s comparison of 2G and 3G handsets aimed to examine whether coverage maps were accurate across different devices. The regulator found that “performance differences are likely in practice to be modest, and not necessarily a factor that consumers should base their choice of phone on”.
Overall, Ofcom found that mobile networks were making progress at addressing areas of poor-coverage both in rural areas and in buildings. The regulator added, however, that there were a number of areas where commercial organisations were unlikely to be able to justify making sufficient investment to seriously improve coverage. (more)
Here’s what the Americans would have done different.
1. The public would have fought back more aggressively. America has a tradition of self-reliance that extends even to the sphere of criminal justice. When the 1992 riots broke out in Los Angeles, the Korean community didn’t flee: they set up barricades and shot looters. Here in Britain that spirit of individual autonomy has long been surrendered to the state. It makes a mockery of routine calls by Conservative politicians for people to tackle vandals and thieves by themselves. What unarmed man would be foolish enough to do that? Britain needs a National Rife Association.
2. A leading Republican presidential contender would have advocated martial law and the summary execution of everyone wearing a hoodie. This riot has exposed how the British Right-wing isn’t very Right-wing these days. Apart from crypto-Rambo MEP Roger Helmer, who asked that rioters be “shot on sight”, Conservatives have been reduced to mumbling epithets about law and order. The sight of Boris Johnson waving a broom with all the conviction of a man who isn’t quite sure what a broom is, was pitiful. The contemporary Tory Party, stripped of its inner-Tebbit, lacks the words to bring catharsis to the British middle-class. We need someone to say what we’re all thinking right now: “Like the Roman… Get on your bike… and U-turn if you want to!” (more)
The word “West” used to have a meaning. It described common goals and values, the dignity of democracy and justice over tyranny and despotism. Now it seems to be a thing of the past. There is no longer a West, and those who would like to use the word ‑ along with Europe and the United States in the same sentence ‑ should just hold their breath. By any definition, America is no longer a Western nation.
The US is a country where the system of government has fallen firmly into the hands of the elite. An unruly and aggressive militarism set in motion two costly wars in the past 10 years. Society is not only divided socially and politically, in its ideological blindness the nation is moving even farther away from the core of democracy. It is losing its ability to compromise.
America has changed. It has drifted away from the West.
The country’s social disintegration is breathtaking. Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz recently described the phenomenon. The richest one percent of Americans claim one-quarter of the country’s total income for themselves ‑ 25 years ago that figure was 12 percent. It also possesses 40 percent of total wealth, up from 33 percent 25 years ago. Stiglitz claims that in many countries in the so-called Third World, the income gap between the poor and rich has been reduced. In the United States, it has grown. (more)
Northern Bank, which operates in Northern Ireland, is offering the loans subject to affordability, although borrowers do not have to belong to a special group, such as professionals who can expect to earn high salaries in future, in order to be considered.
The bank does not offer mortgages in other parts of the UK.
Previously, buyers without a deposit normally had to rely on help from parents via a guarantee.
With “guarantor” mortgages, the home loan is effectively underwritten by the parents. So if you fell behind with monthly payments, this means that they would be obliged to pay.
The advantage of such schemes is that parents don’t have to stump up cash sums upfront and it can enable you to borrow more. But if you run into financial problems, this can affect your parents’ ability to get credit and potentially put their home at risk. Your parents would need to have sufficient income and/or equity in their home to be an effective guarantor, so not all first-time buyers would be able to obtain one of these mortgages. (more)
It was a challenge indeed, but we succeeded. Here are the results:
Shonola Smith, 22, Aspiring glamour girl, 22, jailed for six months after getting caught looting Croydon Argos store - 12th Aug 2011
As magistrates and police work tirelessly to track down and punish those who were involved in the rioting, one pretty model is already facing the consequences.
Shonola Smith, 22, from South Norwood, South London, sobbed as she was jailed for six months after admitting trying to steal from an Argos store in Croydon.
The model was caught outside the store and arrested on the spot, along with her sister, Alicia, and their 22-year-old friend Donness Bissessar.
Police stormed the building in Church Street after youths smashed the shop's front during the widespread destruction in Croydon on Monday night.
The 'remorseful' threesome pleaded guilty to entering the store with intent to steal at Croydon magistrates’ court today. Read More
Sesame Street pair Bert and Ernie 'will not marry' -- What's this? Someone is actually standing up to an agenda? Amazing!
Campaigners say the best friends should marry as a way to encourage tolerance of gay people.
Nearly 7,000 have signed the petition, with more than 3,000 joining a Bert and Ernie Get Married Facebook page.
A statement from the show's makers said: "They remain puppets and do not have a sexual orientation."
But they conceded that the pair are "male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics".
The confirmed bachelors have lived together for 40 years and sleep in the same bedroom, albeit in single beds.
"Bert and Ernie are best friends," the statement from Sesame Workshop added. "They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves.
The online petition states: "We are not asking that Sesame Street do anything crude or disrespectful," adding, "It can be done in a tasteful way. Let us teach tolerance of those that are different." (more)
Syria's state-run SANA news agency reported that government troops were fighting armed gangs in the embattled northwest province of Idlib, an acknowledgement by President Bashar al-Assad's government of military operations that human rights groups allege have resulted in the killings of civilians.
At least one woman was killed in clashes between demonstrators and Syrian forces, who rolled into Khan Sheikhoun at dawn with tanks and armored personnel carriers, according to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which cited reports from opposition activists in the city.
The identities of the opposition activists were withheld by the rights group at their request out of concerns for their safety.
And in the nearby city of Hama, where military units withdrew earlier this week, busloads of plainclothes security forces opened fire to break up anti-government protests after Friday prayers at local mosques, an opposition activist there told CNN. There were reports of casualties, but their number or severity was unknown, he said. (more)
The explosion occurred early in the morning in a part of the pipeline that is in Turkish territory near the border with Iran, the news agency said.
The explosion could cause a halt in gas exports to Turkey for up to three days, the agency reported.
Authorities did not know what caused the blast but firefighters were able to extinguish the fire that came after the explosion. (more)
Saying the "free flow of information" can sometimes be a problem, Cameron's government has summoned those two social-networking sites, as well as Research In Motion, makers of the BlackBerry, for a meeting to discuss their roles during the violent outbreaks.
"Everyone watching these horrific actions will be struck by how they were organized via social media," Cameron said Thursday during an address to Parliament. "Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill. And when people are using social media for violence, we need to stop them."
Cameron said that government officials are working with authorities "to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services when we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality."
More than 1,200 people have been arrested nationwide, Cameron told lawmakers. One estimate found that UK retailers lost more than than £100 million ($161 million) in stolen goods and property damage over four nights of rioting. (more)
More violence was reported in Hama, the scene of a prolonged military assault in the central city, launched at the start of August, as the holy month of Ramadan began.
Activists said troops opened fire on the first large demonstrations held in Hama since the 10-day incursion left a trail of destruction and killed as many as 200 people.
Two youths were killed Friday near al-Tawhid and al-Sahaba mosques in northern residential neighbourhoods of Hama.
At least one protester was killed in Homs, another central city located southeast of Hama.
Activists said one man was shot dead and others were wounded in the Damascus suburb of Saqba after early morning prayers.
They said a woman was killed early Friday after tanks and soldiers launched an assault in Khan Sheikhon in the northern province of Idlib.
Troops also opened fire on thousands of protesters in the eastern city of Deir el-Zour as people were leaving two mosques, according to activists. There was no immediate word on casualties in Deir el-Zour.
Tens of thousands of protesters flooded streets across the country in a strong show of defiance against Assad's regime.
Friday has become the main day for demonstrations in Syria, despite the near-certainty of a government crackdown with bullets and tear gas. (more)
Officials hope the cover will keep radioactive materials that have already leaked from spreading, prevent rainwater seepage and offer a barrier from possible leaks or blasts in the future.
The tent is being erected to provide a temporary replacement for the No. 1 reactor's outer housing shell, which was destroyed in an explosion caused by high pressure the day after Japan's deadly earthquake and tsunami on March 11.
Construction of the tent and its foundation began this week, Koji Watanabe, a spokesman for the power utility, said Friday.
The work couldn't begin until now because the location was too dangerous for workers to operate in.
The tent is made up of airtight polyester. It will stand 54 metres tall and stretch 47 metres in length. It is held up by a metal frame.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. officials have struggled to come up with ways to mitigate the dangers from the plant since the disaster struck five months ago, sending reactors into meltdowns, releasing radiative particles into the environment and causing the world's world nuclear crisis since Chornobyl in 1986. (more)
Authorities in Kunming began searching out the copycats after pictures of one convincing replica were circulated on the web.
An early search found five fake stores, two of which were shut down for trading without a licence.
Now, according to Chinese trade officials, 22 have been found unlawfully using Apple's brand and logo.
The investigation into unauthorised Apple stores in Kunming was brought about when an American living in the city published a blog post describing a visit to one such shop.
Describing it as a "beautiful ripoff", BirdAbroad revealed how far the owners had gone to copy the decor and ambience of a real Apple store.
Staff also wore the same colour T-shirts as real Apple staffers, and sported lanyards of the same design.
The blog post was widely shared around the world and prompted Chinese trade officials in Kunming to take action.
The Administration for Industry and Commerce in Kunming said its investigation had unveiled a slew of stores violating Apple's registered trademarks. (more)
Until now Western sanctions have been ineffective in preventing Assad's violent crackdown on protestors in the last six months. However, the influence of neighboring Turkey and Saudi Arabia is greater than the West, and opens the possibility of damaging diplomatic, economic and even military action.
Yet Assad's increasing international and regional isolation was far from inevitable, and is one of a growing list of miscalculations by his regime that is bringing about its own destruction.
For months Syria's security forces, under the command of Assad's relentless brother, Maher has cracked down with relative impunity while the Arab states and Turkey have said little or remained silent. Assad's strategy appeared to be to suppress demonstrations while cynically keeping casualties to a "manageable" level, rarely crossing 100 deaths on the worst days. (more)
The European Securities and Markets Authority, which is the European version of the Securities and Exchange Commission, said France, Italy, Spain and Belgium have all "decided to impose or extend existing short-selling bans in their respective countries."
"They have done so either to restrict the benefits that can be achieved from spreading false rumors or to achieve a regulatory level playing field, given the close interlinkage between some EU markets," the authority said in a statement.
Short selling occurs when brokers borrow shares and sell them with an expectation of making money on the shares' decline in value. France and Spain announced that their short-selling bans will last for 15 days, and could be extended, if deemed necessary. (more)
The Prime Minister said that “everyone watching these horrific actions will be stuck by how they were organised via social media. Free flow of information can be used for good. But it can also be used for ill.”
He said that he has asked the police if they need new powers, and that Government is “working with the police, the intelligence services and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these websites and services".
The Home Secretary later told Parliament that she will convene a meeting with the police and representatives from the social media industries to to discuss how to improve the technological and related legal capability of the police. They will discuss "whether and how we should be able to stop people communicating via these websites and services", she said.
David Lammy, the MP for Tottenham, had called for BBM to be suspended so that rioters, many of whom were using the free service, would be prevented from planning further attacks.
The police have also made a number of arrests after people made statements on Facebook that were allegedly inciting illegal behaviour. (more)
Equity analysts at Standard & Poor's, the credit rating agency, said that the problem with the European banking system is that it is "not aligned to the single currency area" and that larger banks with operations across the region were likely to replace smaller single country-focused lenders.
"We envisage that banks operating on a more EU-wide basis, alongside an ECB with appropriate powers, would be an important part of a sustainable euro project," said Tony Silverman, a financial analyst at S&P.
"This may mean peripheral countries should not necessarily expect to have their own domestic banks," he added.
Mr Silverman points out that about 50pc of eurozone deposits lent through the European Central Bank and the interbank market are to banks that have loans in excess of their deposits, adding there is a "conspicuous" absence of banks that are net lenders to the market.
"We would question whether this is sustainable and indeed to what extent such funding can meaningfully be regarded as temporary," said Mr Silverman. (more)
Economists said the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), meeting for the first time since its "QE2" asset purchase program ended in June, had few options to overcome stagnating growth and the growing pessimism that sent stock markets on their deepest plunge since the crisis of 2008.
Also under the dark shadows of the eurozone debt crisis, Fed chairman Ben Bernanke and his team will be challenged to shore up confidence in what they have repeatedly called a "recovery" that looks less and less like one.
They were also under international pressure to strengthen the US fiscal balance, four days after Standard & Poor's stunned the country with its first-ever ratings downgrade.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Tuesday called on "relevant nations" to put their economies in order.
China "demands that relevant nations take concrete and responsible fiscal and monetary policies to trim their fiscal deficits and resolve their debt problems... to maintain global investor confidence," Wen told a cabinet meeting.
US officials are already fending off suggestions of a "double-dip" recession, two years after the 19-month "Great Recession" ended in June 2009.
But analysts say the economy in the second half of the year will remain weak, with Goldman Sachs estimating a one-in-three chance of returning to negative growth, after a one percent growth in the first half. (more)
The trade surplus -- a major point of tension for China's key trade partners, the United States and Europe -- was well in excess of June's $22.27 billion.
Analysts said the figures, which also outstripped a Dow Jones forecast of $26.00 billion based on a poll of economists, would add further pressure on Beijing to allow the yuan to appreciate.
China's major trading partners have long complained that the yuan is deliberately undervalued to give Chinese exporters an unfair advantage.
"The expansion of Chinas structural surplus will certainly add more pressure for RMB appreciation," said Alistair Thornton, a Beijing-based China analyst at IHS Global Insight. (more)
Although most municipal issuers are “well insulated from shock,” Moody’s said there are some governments that could be weakened in a volatile market environment.
However, the agency does not anticipate widespread defaults, but opened the door to possible downgrades, although not by more than one level, Reuters reported.
“We expect that the vast majority of these issuers could successfully manage through a period of diminished market access and tight liquidity without facing a severe deterioration in their credit,” Moody’s said in a statement.
Moody’s managing director Timothy Blake said “most municipal issuers are somewhat weaker than they were prior to the last major market disruption” and that is why “some may face significant stress if hostile market conditions emerge.” (more)
Alain Le Roy highlighted the "overwhelming good" that UN peacekeepers have brought to troublespots from Haiti to Ivory Coast, East Timor and Sudan, while also acknowledging some bad and ugly cases.
"I think there will be more instability in the world," he said. "We are not the ones asking for an increased number of troops -- never."
Conflicting pressures on the UN missions were evident during an interview with Le Roy from the New York office he leaves this week.
On one side of the building was a demonstration by Sudanese calling for UN intervention in the troubled state of South Kordofan. On the other, Haitians demanded an end to the UN "occupation force" in their impoverished nation. (more)
The gap widened 4.4 percent to $53.1 billion from $50.8 billion in the prior month, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. The deficit exceeded all estimates in a Bloomberg News survey of economists in which the median was $48 billion. Exports declined the most since January 2009.
U.S. shipments of capital equipment and industrial supplies fell in June, which may reflect the start of a cooling in the global economy. Some companies like Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) remain optimistic that demand for American-made goods will be sustained, helped in part by a weaker dollar.
“The real weakness was in exports and that’s consistent with slower growth in the rest of the world,” said Jay Bryson, a global economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina. “The contribution of exports is going to be a little more shaky” in terms of growth, he said.
Deficit estimates of 74 economists surveyed by Bloomberg ranged from $42.5 billion to $51 billion. The Commerce Department revised the May shortfall from a previously reported $50.2 billion. (more)
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits fell 7,000 to a seasonally adjusted 395,000, the Labor Department said on Thursday, the lowest level since the week ended April 2. That was below economists' expectations for a reading of 400,000.
"This could suggest that labor markets aren't rapidly deteriorating, even if it still doesn't shed much light on what's happening on the hiring side of the equation," said Sean Incremona, an economist at 4CAST in New York.
But the optimism generated by the claims report was dampened somewhat by a surprise widening in the trade deficit in June. The June trade deficit jumped to $53.1 billion, the largest since October 2008, from $50.8 billion in May.
The wider trade shortfall could cause second-quarter's 1.3 percent annual growth pace to be revised lower.
U.S. stock index futures pared losses on the claims data, while the dollar extended gains against the euro. (more)
While technically he is paying for his estimated $50,000 a week rental of the 28-acre beachfront Blue Heron Farm in woodsy Chilmark, the dozens of U.S. Secret Service agents, communications officials, top aides, drivers, and U.S. Coast Guard personnel with him will be covered by taxpayers as with every other presidential vacation.[Get your Whispers on your iPad--subscribe to U.S. News Weekly.]
His 11-day stay will require the Coast Guard to keep ships floating near Obama's farm, a presidential helicopter and jet at the ready and security agents on 24-hour duty. Armored SUVs dubbed "war wagons" have been flown in to carry the presidential family around the island. It was the same way when former President George H.W. Bush visited Kennebunkport, Maine and Bill Clinton visited Martha's Vineyard during their presidencies. [See political cartoons about President Obama.]
Typically, say former White House officials, the collection of aides is smaller for a summer vacation than for an official trip. And the motorcade is cut in half, to about 20 cars. What's more, the press corps will be smaller, though they largely pay for themselves.
Obama's vacation comes at an awkward time because of the economic turmoil roiling the nation and Wall Street. Surveys show that a growing number of Americans can't afford even small vacations. (more)
Not only that, but in a triumph of feminism, a lot of them are girls. Even the "disabled" (according to the British benefits system) seem to have miraculously overcome their infirmities to dash out and steal a few TVs.
Congratulations, Britain! You've barbarized your citizenry, without regard to race, gender or physical handicap!
With a welfare system far more advanced than the United States, the British have achieved the remarkable result of turning entire communities of ancestral British people into tattooed, drunken brutes.
I guess we now have the proof of what conservatives have been saying since forever: Looting is a result of liberal welfare policies. And Britain is in the end stages of the welfare state.
In 2008, a 9-year-old British girl, Shannon Matthews, disappeared on her way home from a school trip. The media leapt on the case -- only to discover that Shannon was one of seven children her mother, Karen, had produced with five different men.
The first of these serial sperm-donors explained: "Karen just goes from one bloke to the next, uses them to have a kid, grabs all the child benefits and moves on."
Poor little Shannon eventually turned up at the home of one of her many step-uncles -- whose ex-wife, by the way, was the mother of six children with three different fathers. (more)
The motive and circumstances surrounding the attacks that have resulted in numerous arrests around the country are being investigated -- and law enforcement officials in at least one city are looking into a possible racial component to the crimes.
Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, who recently imposed a stricter curfew in response to the city's latest attack, addressed black youths directly from the pulpit of his church on Sunday, reportedly saying, “You have damaged your own race.”
"If you want …anybody else to respect you and not be afraid when they see you walking down the street, then leave the innocent people who are walking down the street minding their own damn business. Leave them alone," Nutter told a mostly black congregation at Mount Carmel Baptist Church in West Philadelphia, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. (more)