Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Ashton Kutcher Fights Security Guy at Stagecoach Festival

Source: http://www.thehollywoodgossip.com/2013/04/ashton-kutcher-fights-security-guy-at-stagecoach-festival/

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Herbalife says results will prove Ackman wrong

By Lisa Baertlein

(Reuters) - Herbalife Ltd posted surprisingly strong quarterly earnings and raised its full-year profit forecast on Monday, putting pressure on high-profile investor Bill Ackman, who is betting against the nutritional products company.

Ackman's Pershing Square Capital has a $1 billion bet against the "multi-level marketer" whose weight loss products are sold through a network of independent individuals. In recent months Ackman has called the Los Angeles-based company "a pyramid scheme" and predicted that its shares will eventually be worthless.

Herbalife executives, who have been befriended by hedge fund titan Carl Icahn, told Reuters that the company's global growth speaks for itself.

"The proof is in the results. Ultimately people will realize that Bill Ackman's reckless bet is based on an unfounded hypothesis," Herbalife President Des Walsh told Reuters in an interview.

"The resilience of our customer base and our distributor base will continue to show that he's wrong and dead wrong," Walsh said.


Herbalife's first quarter net income grew to $118.9 million, or $1.10 per share, in the first quarter, compared with $108.2 million, or 88 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding a hit from the devaluation of Venezuela's currency and expenses related to defending the company from criticism by Ackman and other high-profile investors, the company earned $1.27 a share during the quarter - 20 cents more than the average of analysts' estimates compiled by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Net sales rose 17 percent to $1.1 billion.

Based on those results, Herbalife raised its 2013 forecast for adjusted earnings per share to a range of $4.60 to $4.80 from $4.45 to $4.65 previously.

Herbalife shares, which have been volatile due to the debate over its future, slipped 0.9 percent to $38.42 in extended trading. The shares plummeted from about $45 to about $25 at the time of Ackman's attack in December.

Icahn, another closely watched investor, rushed to the firm's defense - taking a stake and putting two representatives on the Herbalife board in February.

But the company also disclosed in February that its operations have been the subject of an inquiry by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's Division of Enforcement since late last year.

It was later discovered that a senior KPMG auditor for Herbalife was leaking nonpublic information about the company in exchange for money, forcing the firm to resign from Herbalife's service.

(Reporting by Martinne Geller in New York and Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; Editing by Richard Chang)

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/herbalife-posts-higher-profit-raises-2013-forecast-203118592.html

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Follow the Money

One of the truest things ever written about politics is something that renowned Yale political scientist Edward Tufte wrote in his 1978 classic, Political Control of the Economy: ?When you think economics, think elections; when you think elections, think economics.? One way or another, the state and direction of the U.S. economy strongly affects the political debate and the contours of national elections.

When the economy is good and improving, voters typically have one mind-set; when it is bad and getting worse, voters are in a different state of mind. When Americans feel they?re getting ahead economically, that?s one thing; when they feel they are either falling behind or just can?t get ahead, they view things?including their political leaders?very differently.

In recent months, economists have been watching the state and direction of the economy very closely, looking for signs that the softness felt about this time in 2010, 2011, and 2012 will occur again. In each case, the first few months of the year started out reasonably strong, but then around April, May, and into June, growth slowed appreciably before picking up again for the rest of the year. In each of the past three years, the reasons the economy slowed in the spring and regained momentum later in the summer differed. And although the economy improved a good bit in the second half of each year, coming out of what economist Sid Jones refers to as ?the longest, deepest, and most diffused? economic downturn since the Great Depression, what this economy needs is four or five consecutive years of strong growth. These fits and starts aren?t helping things. Simply put, Americans in the bottom three-quarters of income groups suffered enormously during the downturn, and even though that period is over, they are not having any fun yet.

To be sure, central banks around the world have been pumping money into their economies at a furious rate over the past few years, and, as a result, the U.S. stock market is doing great, investors are finally getting back into the market, the housing sector is at last coming back to life, and people are starting to buy houses again. Clearly, our economy is doing better than most on the other side of the Atlantic. Economists were further encouraged last week when unemployment claims hit the second-lowest level in five years.

One can focus exclusively on the good news in the U.S. economy, but the fact is, for each piece of favorable news another one is pointing in the opposite direction, and that is what is making some economists a little nervous. For example, economists are scrutinizing corporate reports and forecasting slower earnings, and businesses are showing caution by borrowing less and slowing down certain kinds of spending. That?s obviously not good for an economy trying to break completely free from a sustained downturn. While Monday?s Bureau of Economic Analysis report showed that consumer spending increased by a bit more than expected, personal income came in lower than forecast. Real disposable personal income, which had dropped sharply (by 4 percent) in January, picked up a bit (seven-tenths of 1 percent) in February, but gained only two-tenths of a point in the March report. After inflation and taxes, since the first of this year, improvement in personal income has been running well behind its pace for most of last year, and there has been less improvement than the general pace for most of the past three years.

While the slowdown in government spending, particularly with budget sequestration in place, is having a pronounced positive effect on the federal budget deficit, the decreased level of government spending is offsetting private-sector spending to some extent, again slowing the economy when it needs to be growing. In other words, something good is happening?deficits are dropping?but at the cost of dragging down the economy and further delaying a complete recovery.

How all of this fits into next year?s midterm elections is unknowable at this point, but voters who are cranky about not getting ahead think differently than those who are feeling more comfortable and hopeful about the future?and cranky voters are more likely to punish than reward. We don?t have a sense yet what the zeitgeist will be next year, what people will be thinking and worried about, or whom they will be grateful to or mad at. In a period of divided government and in the absence of a partisan wave, an improving economy might well result in more of a typical, all-politics-is-local election, the kind we haven?t seen since 2004. Economic uncertainty or despair, on the other hand, might make for a more turbulent political environment, with voters more likely to lash out if provoked by one side or the other. In short, we don?t know what voters are telling us yet, but it?s wise to listen very carefully.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/money-193341072.html

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Austerity is hurting our health, say researchers

By Kate Kelland

LONDON (Reuters) - Austerity is having a devastating effect on health in Europe and North America, driving suicide, depression and infectious diseases and reducing access to medicines and care, researchers said on Monday.

Detailing a decade of research, Oxford University political economist David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu, an assistant professor of medicine and an epidemiologist at Stanford University, said their findings show austerity is seriously bad for health.

In a book to be published this week, the researchers say more than 10,000 suicides and up to a million cases of depression have been diagnosed during what they call the "Great Recession" and its accompanying austerity across Europe and North America.

In Greece, moves like cutting HIV prevention budgets have coincided with rates of the AIDS-causing virus rising by more than 200 percent since 2011 - driven in part by increasing drug abuse in the context of a 50 percent youth unemployment rate.

Greece also experienced its first malaria outbreak in decades following budget cuts to mosquito-spraying programs.

And more than five million Americans have lost access to healthcare during the latest recession, they argue, while in Britain, some 10,000 families have been pushed into homelessness by the government's austerity budget.

"Our politicians need to take into account the serious - and in some cases profound - health consequences of economic choices," said David Stuckler, a senior researcher at Oxford University and co-author The Body Economic: Why Austerity Kills

"The harms we have found include HIV and malaria outbreaks, shortages of essential medicines, lost healthcare access, and an avoidable epidemic of alcohol abuse, depression and suicide," he said in a statement. "Austerity is having a devastating effect."

Previous studies by Stuckler published in journals such as The Lancet and the British Medical Journal have linked rising suicide rates in some parts of Europe to biting austerity measures, and found HIV epidemics to be spreading amid cutbacks in services to vulnerable people.

But Stuckler and Basu said negative public health effects are not inevitable, even during the worst economic disasters.

Using data from the Great Depression of the 1930s, to post-communist Russia and from some examples of the current economic downturn, they say financial crises can be prevented from becoming epidemics - if governments respond effectively.

As an example, they say, Sweden's active labor market programs helped the numbers of suicides to fall there during its recession, a big rise in unemployment. Neighboring countries with no such programs saw large increases in suicides.

And during the 1930s depression in the United States, each extra $100 of relief spending from the American New Deal led to about 20 fewer deaths per 1,000 births, four fewer suicides per 100,000 people and 18 fewer pneumonia deaths per 100,000 people.

"Ultimately what we show is that worsening health is not an inevitable consequence of economic recessions. It's a political choice," Basu said in the statement.

(Reporting by Kate Kelland; Editing by Stephen Powell)

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/austerity-hurting-health-researchers-231119361.html

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Holocaust survivors, veterans gather at DC museum

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Elderly survivors of the Holocaust and the veterans who helped liberate them are gathering for what could be their last big reunion at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Some 1,000 survivors and World War II vets are coming together with President Bill Clinton and Elie Wiesel, a Holocaust activist and writer, on Monday when the museum marks its 20th anniversary. Organizers chose not to wait for the 25th milestone because many survivors and vets may not be alive in another five years.

Clinton and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wiesel, who both dedicated the museum at its opening in 1993, will deliver keynote speeches. On Sunday night, the museum presented its highest honor to World War II veterans who ended the Holocaust. Susan Eisenhower accepted the award on behalf of her grandfather, U.S. Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, and all veterans of the era.

The museum also launched a campaign to raise $540 million by 2018 to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive and to combat anti-Semitism, Holocaust denial and contemporary genocide. It has already secured gifts totaling $258.7 million. The campaign will double the size of the museum's endowment by its 25th anniversary. Also, a $15 million gift from Holocaust survivors David and Fela Shapell will help build a new Collections and Conservation Center.

Museum Director Sara Bloomfield said organizers wanted to show Holocaust survivors, veterans and rescuers the effort will continue to honor the memory of 6 million murdered Jews, in part by saving lives and preventing genocide in the future.

"We felt it was important, while that generation is still with us in fairly substantial numbers, to bring them together," Bloomfield said, "to not only honor them, but in their presence make a commitment to them that not only this institution but the people we reach will carry forward this legacy."

The museum continues collecting objects, photographs and other evidence of the Holocaust from survivors, veterans and archives located as far away as China and Argentina. Curators expect the collection to double in size over the next decade.

This week, the museum is opening a special, long-term exhibit titled "Some Were Neighbors: Collaboration and Complicity During the Holocaust." It includes interviews with perpetrators that have never been shown before, as well as details of mass killings in the former Soviet Union that were only uncovered in more recent years.

Curator Susan Bachrach said the exhibit and its research challenge the idea that the Holocaust was primarily about Hitler and other Nazi leaders. Surveys at the museum show that's what most visitors believe.

"That's very comforting to people, because it puts distance between the visitors and who was involved," Bachrach said.

So, the museum set out to look at ordinary people who looked on and were complicit in the killing and persecution of millions of Jews through greed, a desire for career advancement, peer pressure or other factors. It examines influences "beyond hatred and anti-Semitism," Bachrach said.

Focusing only on fanatical Nazis would be a serious misunderstanding of the Holocaust, Bloomfield said.

"The Holocaust wouldn't have been possible, first of all, without enormous indifference throughout Germany and German-occupied Europe, but also thousands of people who were, say, just doing their jobs," she said, such as a tax official who collected special taxes levied against Jews.

In an opening film, some survivors recall being turned over to Nazi authorities in front of witnesses who did nothing. "The whole town was assembled ... looking at the Jews leaving," one survivor recalls.

Steven Fenves was a boy at the time. He recalled how in 1944, Hungary, allied with Nazi Germany, forced his family out of their apartment. The family was deported to Auschwitz, where Fenves' mother was gassed.

"One of the nastiest memories I have is going on that journey and people were lined up, up the stairs, up to the door of the apartment, waiting to ransack whatever we left behind, cursing at us, yelling at us, spitting at us as we left," he said in an interview with the museum.

The museum located images of bystanders looking on as Jews were detained, humiliated and taken away.

Non-Jews were also punished for violating German policies against the mixing of ethnic groups. For the first time, the museum is showing striking, rare footage of a ritualistic shaming of a Polish girl and a German boy for having a relationship. They are marched through the streets of a town in Poland, where the film was located in an attic. Dozens of people look on as Nazi officers cut the hair of the two teenagers. They are forced to look at their nearly bald heads in a mirror before their hair is burned.

"It's hard not to focus on the cruelty that's being perpetrated on this young couple," Bachrach said. "But what we really want people to look at ... is all the other people who are standing around watching this."

Other items displayed include dozens of bullets excavated from the site of a mass grave in former Soviet territory and registration cards from city offices in Western and Southern Europe labeling people with a "J'' for Jew.

The federally funded museum's theme for its 20th anniversary is "Never Again: What You Do Matters." The museum devotes part of its work and research to stopping current and preventing future genocides. A study released by the museum last month found that the longer the current conflict in Syria continues, the greater the danger that mass sectarian violence results in genocide.

Much more is still being learned about the Holocaust, as well, Bloomfield said. The museum is compiling an encyclopedia of all incarceration sites throughout Europe. When the project began, scholars expected to list 10,000 such sites. Now the number stands at 42,000.

The museum opened in 1993 as a living memorial to the Holocaust to inspire people worldwide to prevent genocide. A presidential commission called for such a museum in 1979. Since opening, it has counted more than 30 million visitors. The museum also provides resources for survivors. It has partnered with Ancestry.com to begin making the museum's 170 million documents searchable online through the World Memory Project.




Follow Brett Zongker on Twitter at https://twitter.com/DCArtBeat .

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/holocaust-survivors-veterans-gather-dc-135050784.html

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Academic Excellence and St. Stephen's College: A response by ...

This is a guest post by THANE RICHARD

I recently read an article in Kafila ? more like an angry, reflective rant ? written by some students from St. Stephen?s College in Delhi. ?To quickly summarize, the piece criticized the draconian views of the Principal of St. Stephen?s College regarding curfews on women?s dormitories and his stymying of his students? democratic ideals of discussion, protest, and open criticism. ?More broadly, though, the article?s writers seemed to be speaking about the larger stagnant institution of Indian higher education, overseen by a class of rigid administrators represented by this sexist and bigoted Principal, as described by the students. ?The students? frustration was palpable in the text and their story felt to me like a perfect example of what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. ?Except Indian students are not an unstoppable force. ?Not even close.

In 2007 I was a student at St. Stephen?s College for seven months as part of a study abroad program offered by my home institution, Brown University. ?In as many ways as possible, I tried to become a Stephanian: I joined the football (soccer) team, acted in a school play written and directed by an Indian peer, performed in the school talent show, was a member of the Honors Economics Society, and went to several student events on and off campus. ?More importantly, though, I was a frequenter of the school?s cafe and enjoyed endless chai?s and butter toasts with my Indian peers under the monotonous relief of the fans spinning overhead. ?Most of my friends were 3rd years, like me, and all of them were obviously very bright. I was curious about what their plans were after they graduated. ?With only a few exceptions, they were planning on pursuing second undergraduate degrees at foreign universities.

?Wait, what?! You are studying here for three years just so you can go do it again for four more years?? ?I could not grasp the logic of this. ?What changed my understanding was when I started taking classes at St. Stephen?s College. ?Except for one, they were horrible.

This was not an isolated incident ? all my fellow exchange students (6 from Brown University and even more from Rutgers University in the next apartment block) concurred that the academics were a joke compared to what we were used to back home. ?In one economic history class the professor would enter the room, take attendance, open his notebook, and begin reading. ?He would read his notes word for word while we, his students, copied these notes word for word until the bell sounded. ?Next class he would find the spot where the bell had interrupted him, like a storyteller reading to children and trying to recall where he had last put down the story. ?He would even pause slightly at the end of a long sentence to give us enough time to finish writing before he moved on. ?And this was only when he decided to show up ? many times I arrived on campus to find class abruptly canceled. ?Classmates exchanged cell phone numbers and created phone trees just to circulate word of a canceled class. ?I got a text almost daily about one of my classes. ?My foreigner peers had many similar experiences.

I would sit in class and think to myself ?Can you just photocopy your notebook and give me the notes so I can spend my time doing something less completely useless?? ?I refused to participate. ?Instead, I sat at my desk writing letters to friends.

If it were not for the fact that attendance counted towards my marks, I would have never showed up at all. ?There was no need. ?I calculated the minimum attendance required not to fail, hit that target square on, and still got excellent grades. ?In one political science class the only requirements for the entire period between August and December were two papers, each 2500 words. ?I wrote more intense papers in my U.S. public High School in a month. ?Readings were required but how can this be enforced when there is no discussion that makes students accountable for coming to class prepared? ?The only questions I heard asked during my classes were about whether the material being covered that day would be on the exam. ?Remember, this is not any regular liberal arts college ? St. Stephen?s College is regarded as one of, if not the best, college in India.

The best learning experience I had was hundreds of miles from campus with four other students and one professor on a trek to Kedarnath during October break . ?We had multi-day conversations spanning morality, faith, and history. ?During one memorable overnight bus ride our professor told us the entire Mahabharata epic from memory while we leaned over seats or squatted in the aisle to be closer to the campfire of his voice while the rest of the bus dozed around us. ?The thirst in these students was there and this professor exemplified passionate teaching, but the system is broken. ?Bearing in mind the richness of India?s intellectual tradition, my entire study abroad experience in India, from an academic standpoint, was an enormous disappointment.

To pause for a moment, here is the problem with me talking about this topic: right now many Indians reading this are starting to feel defensive. ??Nationalist? is a term I have heard as a self-description as they defend Mother India from the bigoted, criticizing foreigner. ?They focus on me rather than the problem. ?I have had people de-friend me on Facebook and walk out on meals because I politely expressed an opinion on politics or history that went against the publicly consented ?Indian opinion.? ?For a nation that prides itself on the 17 languages printed on its currency, I am greeted with remarkable intolerance. ?Even after living in India for close to three years, attending an Indian college, working for an Indian company, founding an Indian company, paying taxes in India, and making India my home, I am not Indian enough to speak my mind. ?But in a nation that rivals all others in the breadth of its human diversity, who is Indian enough? ?Because if loyalty and a feeling of patriotism were the barometers for ?Indianness,? rather than skin color or a government document, then I would easily be a dual US-Indian citizen. ?This Indian defensiveness is false nationalism. ?It is not a stance that cares about India, it is one that cares about what others think of India, which is not nationalism. ?That is narcissism.

My voice should be drowned out by the millions around me who are disappointed with how they have been short-changed by the Indian government ? their government. ?Education is one of the most poignant examples of this and serves as great dinner conversation amongst the elite:??The Indian education system is lost in the past and failing India.? Everyone at the table nods, mumbles their concurrence, and cites the most recent Economist article or PricewaterhouseCooper study on the matter in order to masquerade as informed.

?Yes, how sad.?

?Yes, how terrible.?

?Yes, India must fix this.?

Yet amongst my fellow Indian education alumni I mostly hear a deafening silence when it comes to action. ?What is remarkable is that all students in India know what I am talking about. ?They know and are coping: Indian students are taking their useless Indian liberal arts degrees and going abroad to get real ones that signify a real education. ?A real education being one that challenges the intellect and questions paradigms, not one of rote memorization and conformity. ?Or, as was the case with my Indian friends at Brown, they skip India altogether. ?Sure, I took some unimpressive classes at Brown and no curriculum is perfect, but Indian students should be demanding more. ?Much more.

The article I read by the Stephenian students was a step, but too little of one and in the wrong direction. ?Dorm curfews? ?The students of St. Stephen?s College need to dig deeper and question why they are in those dorms in the first place. ?Griping about the loss of their democratic rights in school? ?Wake up, students have no recognized rights. ?If they did, then their right to an education would be respected, but the status quo says otherwise. ?How dare they discuss it, says the system.

To provide another anecdote, I used to interview Indian students applying to Brown University. ?While the Admissions Office says this forms a small component of the application relative to other factors like grades, activities, test scores, and essays, they nevertheless like to arrange an alumni interview whenever they can. ?The purpose is to be conversational and get a sense for the human who is obscured by the very impersonal scores and grades; it is not meant to be an interrogation. ?The applicant is also encouraged to ask me questions and learn more about Brown. ?In all the interviews I did, only one applicant truly inspired me to write a glowing review of our encounter. ?Similarly, I constantly get asked by Indian parents what the secret is to getting in to schools like Brown. ?I have even been hired by a few parents to consult for them and assist their son or daughter in the application process.

What consistently struck me about these students was their (and their parents?) cookie cutter attempts to craft the perfect applicant. ?That in itself was not remarkable ? High School students all over the US do this ? but what I found different was the lack of depth. ?The students spent hours at tutorials to ace the Board Exams and maybe had an activity outside of the classroom here and there, but there was nothing, except in that one outstanding student, that provided an outlet for their personality to shine through. ?I particularly focused on helping the students with their essays (I never wrote for them, only edited) and coaxed them to describe why they had done some activity or loved some class. ?Dead stares and long telephone pauses ensued. ?There seemed to be no spark ? no inquisitive magnetism pulling them towards exploring the unknown. ?I was teleported back to the economic history class I took at St. Stephen?s and I felt like the professor: these students would look up from their notebooks at me and want to know what to copy next. ?These students were adapting to be seen as the best within a broken system ? it was an overwhelmingly depressing epiphany.

In my opinion, the students of India have two choices: either let the government sort itself out or take ownership of the problem themselves. ?Mass protest against the inertia of regressive forces is an atavistic trait in young Indians. ?Indeed, modern India was born out of such actions. ?Moreover, many of the cultural revolutions throughout history have had students waving the banners. ?What I find inspiring about St. Stephen?s students writing the article I referenced at the beginning is that they have the most to lose in this fight and are starting to fight anyway.

Fact: every student at St. Stephen?s is part of India?s elite. ?While there is a reservation system for the admission of scheduled castes and others residing at the bottom of India?s socio-economic pyramid, once every student at St. Stephen?s enrolls they become a member of the elite, irrespective of background. ?With that name stamped on their diploma, the world becomes easier because they are part of ?the club.? ?For example, an idiot who graduates from Harvard and learned nothing probably has an easier chance of getting a great job than the genius from an unheard of college. ?Sad but mostly true. ?The same can be said with respect to the Ivy League, Oxford and Cambridge, and elite schools all over the world. ?It would be easy for St. Stephen?s students to not challenge the system and continue to move down the conveyor belt because, relative to other schools, their actual education matters less; the name and reputation of the school relieves some of the weight that the student?s intellect would otherwise have to carry.

The opposite side of this same coin, though, is the upside St. Stephen?s students could reap. ?St. Stephen?s students also have the most to gain from change. ?Because St. Stephen?s College is such a great school, it can attract great names and create a great curriculum. ?Imagine if my teachers had actually taught their classes? ?Whoa. ?Instead of just the promise and illusion of an amazing liberal arts education, St. Stephen?s students would get that education. ?If the end is knowledge, then St. Stephen?s students win big.

We are entering a year of politics and elections. ?With elections comes the possibility of change. ?The most troubling line in the student?s article was in reference to the ?wielding of disproportionate power by the Principle,? which was:??Education in India awaits a rescue from the hands of such figures.?

Who, may I ask, do you hope to be your rescuers? ?Your representatives in government? ?Your parents? The characters from Rang De Basanti??There is a window available if only there existed the resolve and determination within India?s students to seize it, which remains to be seen. ?One lesson that no college is very good at teaching is that in life you should not expect others to fight your battles for you. ?While higher education is a public good and has champions in the private and public world, students are the ultimate stakeholders. ?If the students at St. Stephen?s College want to practice the potent words that they wrote in Kafila, then it is time to stand up and be counted. ?If not, the only people who suffer will be themselves.

In addition to being an endless victim of name/place confusion when living in Mumbai, Thane is a journalist and editor currently calling the road his home. ?You can follow him @ThaneRichard

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Source: http://kafila.org/2013/04/30/academic-excellence-and-st-stephens-college-a-response-by-thane-richard/

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Court rejects Alabama appeal over immigration law

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) ? An attorney for the Montgomery-based Southern Poverty Law Center says he's not surprised the U.S. Supreme Court has turned down a request to revive portions of Alabama's immigration law.

Supreme Court justices on Monday upheld a federal appeals court ruling that blocked parts of the law. SPLC attorney Sam Brooke says lower courts have already said immigration reform is a function of the federal government and not the states.

Brooke says he hopes the ruling will motivate Congress to seek meaningful reform.

Justice Antonin Scalia voted to hear the appeal. A spokeswoman for Attorney General Luther Strange, Joy Patterson, says Scalia's vote is a sign that once additional courts have considered the issue, the Supreme Court will grant review.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/court-rejects-alabama-appeal-over-immigration-law-135154358.html

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Marathon Detroit refinery fire began during tank fueling: filing

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Marathon Petroleum Corp's reported a Saturday night fire broke out in a sour water tank at its 106,000 barrel per day (bpd) Detroit refinery, while the tank was being fueled, according to a notice filed with the U.S. National Response Center.

Marathon declined to discuss operations at the refinery on Sunday. On Saturday, Marathon said there were no injuries due to the blaze and the refinery continued to operate normally.

The cause of the fire is unknown, according to the notice, which became available to the public on Sunday.

Sour water is wastewater from the refining process. Pollutants have to be stripped out of it before the water can be reused or sent to an outside wastewater system.

Marathon reported the sour water tank involved in the fire contained ammonia, hydrogen sulfide and sulfur dioxide.

The fire was extinguished about two hours after it broke out.

(Reporting by Erwin Seba;editing by Sofina Mirza-Reid)

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/marathon-detroit-refinery-fire-began-during-tank-fueling-212636173.html

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Midwest Classic Auto Sales Selects Carsforsale.com? to Develop ...

Carsforsale.com has teamed up with Midwest Classic Auto Sales in Jasper, Indiana to launch a new dealer website, mobile site, dealership inventory listings and a platform of additional marketing tools.

Sioux Falls, SD (PRWEB) April 28, 2013

Carsforsale.com dealer website designers are proud to launch an automotive website for Midwest Classic Auto Sales. This website features cars, trucks and SUV inventory for sale in an easy-to-navigate format. In this day and age, with consumers doing the majority of auto shopping before they visit a dealership, it is vital to have a website that provides the consumer with the information they need.

Midwest Classic Auto Sales in Jasper also has a vast array of marketing solutions offered to them via the Carsforsale.com dealer system. The dealer system offers social media tools, template posting systems, Web positioning and search engine optimization, wholesale networking, customer relationship tools, data reporting and more.

In business since 1999, Carsforsale.com offers great opportunity to grow Midwest Classic Auto Sales' sales strategies, with millions of visitors viewing their inventory portal each month. This paired with dealer inventory postings on Evansville, Indiana FreeClassifieds.com, an exclusive automotive partner with Carsforsale.com, extends the dealer reach into further online consumer resources.

"Dealer sales and website development are at the core of what we do at Carsforsale.com. We are excited to have Midwest Classic Auto Sales partner with us," said Carsforsale.com?s Sean Coffman.

About Midwest Classic Auto Sales:
Midwest Classic Auto Sales is located in Jasper, Indiana. Midwest Classic Auto Sales' inventory can be found on Carsforsale.com.

About Carsforsale.com:
Carsforsale.com created in 1999 and headquartered in Sioux Falls, SD, is one of the fastest-growing and most popular auto classified websites. Carsforsale.com offers a fast and effective way to connect buyers with sellers of used cars. Carsforsale.com reaches millions of unique visitors each month and is a privately held company.

For the original version on PRWeb visit: http://www.prweb.com/releases/prweb2013/4/prweb10677434.htm

Source: http://www.virtual-strategy.com/2013/04/28/midwest-classic-auto-sales-selects-carsforsalecom%C2%AE-develop-dealer-marketing-solutions

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The Weirdest Thing on the Internet Tonight: Modin

Like running out of gas on the final lap, spiking the ball on the one yard line after a Hail Mary, or catching the game-winning run sleeping on his lead at third, there is no worse feeling than losing on account of a premature celebration. The same goes for robo-bums fighting over a battery?you've got to plug in before doing the touchdown dance lest you wind up just as dead as your opponent.

Source: http://gizmodo.com/the-weirdest-thing-on-the-internet-tonight-modin-484467735

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Molecular role of gene linked to blood vessel formation uncovered

Apr. 29, 2013 ? University of North Carolina researchers have discovered that disrupting a gene that acts as a regulatory switch to turn on other genes can keep blood vessels from forming and developing properly.

Further study of this gene -- a "transcription factor" called CASZ1 -- may uncover a regulatory network that influences the development of cardiovascular disease. A number of other studies have already shown a genetic link between mutations in CASZ1 and hypertension.

The UNC research, which was carried out in a frog model as well as human cells, will be published April 29, 2013, in the journal Developmental Cell.

"There has been a lot of interest in studying the vasculature because of its role in a wide range of disease states, as well as human development. But there are very few transcription factors that are known to affect the vasculature. To find a new one is quite unique, and then to be able to link it up to a known network of vascular development is surprising and encouraging," said senior study author Frank Conlon, PhD, an associate professor of genetics in the UNC School of Medicine.

During vascular development, specialized cells coalesce into three-dimensional "cords" that then hollow out to provide a path for transporting blood throughout the body. This process involves the complex coordination of molecular entities like growth factors and signaling molecules, defects that have been associated with human illnesses such as cancer, stroke, and atherosclerosis.

Conlon has long been interested in understanding how these various molecular players come together in the cardiovascular system. In 2008, his laboratory showed that a gene called CASZ1 is involved in the development of heart muscle. In this study, he and his colleagues decided to look for its role in the development of blood vessels.

Marta S. Charpentier and Kathleen S. Christine, lead authors of the study and graduate students in Conlon's laboratory, removed CASZ1 from frog embryos and looked to see how its absence affected the development of the vasculature. Without CASZ1, the frogs failed to form branched and functional blood vessels. When they removed the CASZ1 gene from cultured human cells, Charpentier and Christine saw similar defects: the cells did not sprout or branch correctly due to their inability to maintain proper adhesions with the surrounding extracellular matrix.

"If you take out CASZ1, these cultured human cells try to migrate by sending out these filopodia or little feet, but what happens is it is like someone nails down the back end of those growing vessels. They try to move and keep getting thinner and thinner, and like an elastic band it gets to be too much and just snaps back. It appears to cause an adhesion defect that makes the cells too sticky to form normal vessels," said Conlon.

CASZ1 is a transcription factor, a master switch that controls when and where other genes are expressed. Therefore, Charpentier and Christine did a series of experiments to explore CASZ1's influence on a known vascular network, involving other genes called Egfl7 and RhoA. When Charpentier and Christine added the Egfl7 gene to her CASZ1-depleted cells, the defect in blood vessel formation went away, suggesting that the two genes are connected. They then showed that CASZ1 directly acts on the Egfl7 gene, and that this activity in turn activates the RhoA gene, which is known to be required for cellular behaviors associated with adhesion and migration.

Transcription factors themselves are so essential that they are generally considered to be "undruggable," but the researchers say that further studies into how specific transcription factors work and the targets they control could eventually lead to new drug candidates.

"Egfl7 is a therapeutic target of interest, because companies such as Genentech are already working on it for cancer therapy," said Charpentier. "Figuring out how it is regulated is important not just for understanding the biology of it, but also for discovering targets that could trigger the development of innovative therapeutic strategies for cardiovascular disease."

The research was a collaboration between the Conlon, Taylor, and Bautch labs at the McAllister Heart Institute at UNC and was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the American Heart Association. Study co-authors from UNC were Nirav M. Amin, PhD; Kerry M. Dorr; Erich J. Kushner, PhD; Victoria L. Bautch, PhD; and Joan M. Taylor, PhD.

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The above story is reprinted from materials provided by University of North Carolina School of Medicine, via Newswise.

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Journal Reference:

  1. Marta?S. Charpentier, Kathleen?S. Christine, Nirav?M. Amin, Kerry?M. Dorr, Erich?J. Kushner, Victoria?L. Bautch, Joan?M. Taylor, Frank?L. Conlon. CASZ1 Promotes Vascular Assembly and Morphogenesis through the Direct Regulation of an EGFL7/RhoA-Mediated Pathway. Developmental Cell, 2013; 25 (2): 132 DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2013.03.003

Note: If no author is given, the source is cited instead.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of ScienceDaily or its staff.

Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/health_medicine/genes/~3/fPFRSP7gyI8/130429125512.htm

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The integrated prom was a whopping success (Americablog)

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Pattern seen in alleged chemical arms use in Syria

FILE - In this Tuesday March 19, 2013 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian victim who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan al-Assal village according to SANA, receives treatment by doctors, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. The purported instances in which chemical weapons have been used in Syria have been relatively small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq. That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks and definitive proof remains elusive. Analysts say the answer could lie in the past the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response. (AP Photo/SANA, File)

FILE - In this Tuesday March 19, 2013 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian victim who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan al-Assal village according to SANA, receives treatment by doctors, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. The purported instances in which chemical weapons have been used in Syria have been relatively small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq. That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks and definitive proof remains elusive. Analysts say the answer could lie in the past the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response. (AP Photo/SANA, File)

FILE - In this Tuesday, March 19, 2013 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian victim who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan al-Assal village according to SANA, receives treatment by doctors, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. The purported instances in which chemical weapons have been used in Syria have been relatively small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq. That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks and definitive proof remains elusive. Analysts say the answer could lie in the past the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response. (AP Photo/SANA, File)

FILE - In this Tuesday March 19, 2013 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, a Syrian victim who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan al-Assal village according to SANA, receives treatment by doctors, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. The purported instances in which chemical weapons have been used in Syria have been relatively small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq. That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks and definitive proof remains elusive. Analysts say the answer could lie in the past the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response. (AP Photo/SANA, File)

FILE - In this Tuesday March 19, 2013 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, Syrian victims who suffered an alleged chemical attack at Khan al-Assal village according to SANA, receive serum treatments, at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria. The purported instances in which chemical weapons have been used in Syria have been relatively small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq. That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks and definitive proof remains elusive. Analysts say the answer could lie in the past the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response. (AP Photo/SANA, File)

(AP) ? The instances in which chemical weapons are alleged to have been used in Syria were purportedly small in scale: nothing along the lines of Saddam Hussein's 1988 attack in Kurdish Iraq that killed thousands.

That raises the question of who would stand to gain as President Bashar Assad's regime and the opposition trade blame for the alleged attacks, and proof remains elusive.

Analysts say the answer could lie in the past ? the regime has a pattern of gradually introducing a weapon to the conflict to test the international community's response.

The U.S. said last week that intelligence indicates the Syrian military has likely used sarin, a deadly nerve agent, on at least two occasions in the civil war, echoing similar assessments from Israel, France and Britain. Syria's rebels accuse the regime of firing chemical weapons on at least four occasions, while the government denies the charges and says opposition fighters have used chemical agents in a bid to frame it.

But using chemical weapons to try to force foreign intervention would be a huge gamble for the opposition, and one that could easily backfire. It would undoubtedly taint the rebellion in the eyes of the international community and seriously strain its credibility.

Mustafa Alani, an analyst at the Gulf Research Center in Geneva, said it would also be difficult for the rebels to successfully employ chemical agents.

"It's very difficult to weaponize chemical weapons," he said. "It needs a special warhead, for the artillery a special fuse."

In the chaos of Syria's civil war, pinning down definitive proof on the alleged use of weapons of mass destruction is a tricky task with high stakes. President Barack Obama has said any use of chemical arms ? or the transfer of stockpiles to terrorists ? would cross a "red line" and carry "enormous consequences."

Already, the White House's announcement that the Syrian regime appears to have used chemical arms has ratcheted up the pressure on Obama to move forcefully. He has sought to temper expectations of a quick U.S. response, saying too little is known about the alleged attacks to take action now.

Analysts suggest that a limited introduction of the weapons, with little ostensible military gain, could be an attempt by the Syrian government to test the West's resolve while retaining the veil of plausible deniability. This approach would also allow foreign powers eager to avoid a costly intervention in Syria to remain on the sidelines, while at the same time opening the door for the regime to use the weapons down the road.

"If it's testing the water, and we're going to turn a blind eye, it could be used widely, repeatedly," Alani said. "If you are silent once, you will be silent twice."

The slow introduction of a weapon to gauge the West's response fits a pattern of behavior the Assad regime has demonstrated since the uprising began in March 2011, according to Joseph Holliday, a Syria analyst at the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War.

When largely peaceful protesters initially took to the streets, the regime responded with small arms fire and a wave of arrests. As the government ramped up its violent crackdown, the opposition began to take up arms in late 2011, prompting yet another escalation in force by the regime.

In early 2012, government troops began using heavy weapons, first in a relatively restrained manner on military targets.

"Once they could confirm that there wasn't going to be a major reaction from the West, they were able to expand the use of artillery," Holliday said.

By the summer of 2012, government troops were pounding rebellious neighborhoods with tank fire, field cannons and mortars, but the rebellion was stronger than ever, prompting Assad to turn to his air force, and the regime's MiG fighter jets and helicopter gunships began to strike military targets in rural areas.

After the government was satisfied that the international community wasn't going to impose a no-fly zone like NATO did in Libya, Assad unleashed the full might of his air power, and warplanes have been indiscriminately bombing rebel-held areas since.

"It all fits the pattern of being able to do this incrementally," Holliday said.

"It's been important for the regime to introduce these capabilities as gradually as possible so that they don't trip the international community's red lines," he added. "I think this is basically a modus operandi that the Assad regime has established and tested with the United States, and confirmed that it works, and he's using it again with chemical weapons."

Syria has never confirmed it even has chemical weapons. But it is believed to possess substantial stockpiles of mustard gas and a range of nerve agents, including sarin, a highly toxic substance that can suffocate its victims by paralyzing muscles around their lungs.

Concern rose last summer when then-Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi told a news conference that Damascus would only use chemical or biological weapons in case of foreign attack, not against its own people. The ministry then tried to blur the issue, saying it had never acknowledged having such arms.

Weapons of mass destruction are generally viewed as a deterrent against foreign attack, and their use a sign of desperation. But Assad appears far from desperate at the moment, and in fact is operating from a position of relative strength.

While much of northern Syria has fallen to the rebels, the government's hold on Damascus is firm and its forces have been on the offensive in the capital's suburbs and in the countryside near the border with Lebanon. In the northwest, regime troops recently opened up a key supply road to soldiers fighting in the embattled city of Aleppo.

Two of the alleged attacks the Syrian opposition blames on the regime took place in and around Aleppo: one in Khan al-Assal west of the city on March 19, and another in the contested Shiekh Maqsoud neighborhood on April 13. The other alleged instances were in the central city of Homs on Dec. 23 and in the village of Otaybah outside Damascus on March 19.

It is not clear exactly how many people died in those attacks because of the scarcity of credible information. The Syrian government seals off areas it controls to journalists and outside observers, making details of the attacks sketchy. But reports from anti-Assad activists and the government provide a basic outline.

Opposition activists have posted videos and pictures online of alleged victims of the attacks foaming at the mouth or with blister burns ? symptoms consistent with chemical weapons attacks, but also other munitions. The Syrian state news agency, after one attack it blamed on rebels, published photos of casualties, including children. None showed signs of physical injuries.

Both sides in the civil war, which has already killed more than 70,000 people, have tried to use the issue to sway international opinion.

Rebels have been clamoring for more robust international action against the Assad regime. At a recent gathering in Turkey of the rebellion's international supporters, the opposition political leadership demanded drone strikes on regime targets and the imposition of a no-fly zone, and it reiterated calls for transfers of heavier weapons to its fighters.

The regime has seized on the opposition's demands for outside support to bolster its argument that rebels may have used chemical weapons to frame the government and precipitate foreign intervention.

In December, after rebels captured a chlorine factory in Aleppo, the government warned the opposition could be planning a chemical attack to frame the regime. To back up its assertions, the state news agency pointed to internet videos that purported to show regime opponents experimenting with poisons on mice and rabbits.

In the video, a masked man mixes gases in a glass box containing two rabbits. About a minute later, the animals start to spasm and then collapse. A narrator then says, "This is what will happen to you, Assad supporters." The origin of the video was not known.

Alani dismissed the possibility of the rebels, including Islamic extremist groups among the most powerful opposition fighting factions, carrying out a chlorine attack.

He noted that al-Qaida militants used chlorine on at least two occasions in Iraq in the cities of Ramadi and Fallujah, but abandoned the practice because "the impact of the chlorine was far less than conventional explosives."


Follow Ryan Lucas on Twitter at www.twitter.com/relucasz

Associated Press

Source: http://hosted2.ap.org/APDEFAULT/cae69a7523db45408eeb2b3a98c0c9c5/Article_2013-04-28-Syria-Chemical%20Weapons/id-21c5bf35c82b4a83bbe9643a62a1f943

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Missy Elliott likes literature classes (Unqualified Offerings)

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More bombing victims leave Boston hospitals

BOSTON (AP) ? Boston hospitals say the number of patients being treated for injuries sustained in the marathon bombing continues to drop, two weeks after the attack that killed three and hurt more than 260.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center said Sunday morning that it has six patients with bombing injuries, down from more than 20 immediately following the April 15 attack.

All six are in good or fair condition.

Nine victims are still at Brigham and Women's Hospital, down from 36 after the bombing. Seven are in good condition.

As Massachusetts General Hospital, six bombing victims remain hospitalized Sunday, with one in serious condition. The hospital has treated 31 bombing victims.

In all, 26 hospitals have treated people injured in the bombing.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/more-bombing-victims-leave-boston-hospitals-150709620.html

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Sunday, April 28, 2013

FAA: Air traffic system soon at full operation

NEW YORK (AP) ? The Federal Aviation Administration said that the U.S. air traffic system will resume normal operations by Sunday evening after lawmakers rushed a bill through Congress allowing the agency to withdraw furloughs of air traffic controllers and other workers.

The FAA said Saturday that it has suspended all employee furloughs and that traffic facilities will begin returning to regular staffing levels over the next 24 hours. The furloughs were fallout from the $85 billion in automatic-across-the-board spending cuts this spring.

The furloughs started to hit air traffic controllers this past week, causing flight delays that left thousands of travelers frustrated and furious. Planes were forced to take off and land less frequently, so as not to overload the remaining controllers on duty.

The FAA had no choice but to cut $637 million as its share of $85 billion in automatic, government-wide spending cuts that must be achieved by the end of the federal budget year on Sept. 30.

Flight delays piled up across the country Sunday and Monday of this week as the FAA kept planes on the ground because there weren't enough controllers to monitor busy air corridors. Cascading delays held up flights at some of nation's busiest airports, including New York, Baltimore and Washington. Delta Air Lines canceled about 90 flights Monday because of worries about delays. Just about every passenger was rebooked on another Delta flight within a couple of hours. Air travel was smoother Tuesday.

Things could have been worse. A lot of people who had planned to fly this week changed their plans when they heard that air travel might be difficult, according to longtime aviation consultant Daniel Kasper of Compass Lexicon.

"Essentially what happened from an airline's perspective is that people who were going to travel didn't travel," he said. But canceled flights likely led to lost revenue for airlines. Even if they didn't have to incur some of costs of fueling up planes and getting them off the ground, crews that were already scheduled to work still had to paid.

"One week isn't going to kill them, but had it gone on much longer, it would have been a significant hit on their revenues and profits," Kasper said.

The challenges this week probably cost airlines less than disruptions from a typical winter storm, said John F. Thomas, an aviation consultant with L.E.K. Consulting.

"I think the fact that it got resolved this week has minimized the cost as it was more the inconvenience factor," Thomas said.

The budget cuts at the FAA were required under a law enacted two years ago as the government was approaching its debt limit. Democrats were in favor of raising the debt limit without strings attached so as not to provoke an economic crisis, but Republicans insisted on substantial cuts in exchange. The compromise was to require that every government "program, project and activity" ? with some exceptions, like Medicare ? be cut equally.

The FAA had reduced the work schedules of nearly all of its 47,000 employees by one day every two weeks, including 15,000 air traffic controllers, as well as thousands of air traffic supervisors, managers and technicians who keep airport towers and radar facility equipment working. That amounted to a 10 percent cut in hours and pay.

Republicans accused the Obama administration of forcing the furloughs to raise public pressure on Congress to roll back the budget cuts. Critics of the FAA insist the agency could have reduce its budget in other ways that would not have inconvenience travelers including diverting money from other accounts, such as those devoted to research, commercial space transportation and modernization of the air traffic control computers.

President Barack Obama chided lawmakers Saturday over their fix for widespread flight delays, deeming it an irresponsible way to govern, dubbing it a "Band-Aid" and a quick fix, rather than a lasting solution to the spending cuts known as the sequester.

"Republicans claimed victory when the sequester first took effect, and now they've decided it was a bad idea all along," Obama said, singling out the GOP even though the bill passed with overwhelming Democratic support in both chambers.

He scolded lawmakers for helping the Federal Aviation Administration while doing nothing to replace other cuts that he said harm federal employees, unemployed workers and preschoolers in Head Start.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/faa-air-traffic-system-soon-full-operation-172947164.html

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Why the Anatomy Lab Remains a Fixture of Medicine

NEW YORK ? For hundreds of years, physicians have been dissecting the dead to learn about the inner workings of the human body.

While the subject matter itself hasn't changed much, the study of anatomy has been steadily advancing ? both in terms of the tools available to clinicians and the ways in which educators and students approach the material. Yet amidst these changes, there's no replacement for the hands-on experience of the anatomy lab, physicians say.

Many people think the purpose of the anatomy lab is for students to simply learn the nomenclature for the parts of the body, said Todd Olson, an anatomist at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. This is certainly part of the purpose ? "anatomy is the foundation for the language of medicine: the language health-care professionals use for communicating about patients," Olson said. But it's not the only reason. [Image Gallery: The Oddities of Human Anatomy]?

One of the most valuable aspects of the anatomy lab experience is gaining an appreciation of human variability, Olson said. "I've been teaching and studying anatomy for over 40 years, and I've never seen a live or dead person that looks like an anatomy book, because every picture in an anatomy book identifies the 'average' condition," he said. "But none of us are 100 percent average." These differences include those between the old and young, between men and women, and from person to person.

Whereas the anatomy lab remains a cornerstone of medical education, other parts of medical teaching have changed in recent years. As the amount of medical knowledge grows ? for instance, with vast advances in medical imaging ? medical curriculums must grow to keep pace, which ultimately means less time for each concept. Many medical schools have reduced the amount of time spent in the anatomy lab, and some even provide predissected cadavers (called prosections) so students don't have to spend time doing it themselves.

Technology plays an increasing role in the lab these days, too. At NYU School of Medicine, for example, students use a digital 3D software program called the BioDigital Human as a complement to their manual dissections. Technology can be helpful in anatomy education, Olson said, but it?s not going to replace dissection. "Dissection is something that is very real. It is happening to the remains of a once-human being, it is not something that is easily replicated on a computer screen." [Ready for Med School? Test Your Body Smarts]

Also in recent years, anatomy educators have pushed to focus on only the most clinically relevant aspects of anatomy ? what doctors will use in the real world. Rather than having medical students learn every structure in the human body, it's more important they learn about how different parts relate to medical conditions, Olson said. The American Association of Clinical Anatomists, of which Olson was the past president, was founded in order "to bring together anatomy educators around the country who are part of this revolution in how anatomy is presented to health-care professionals," he said.

Hands-on clinical experience

At most medical schools, students take an introductory gross anatomy course in their first year. But at Einstein College of Medicine, some students return to the lab several years later, during their medical residency. Einstein runs an anatomy lab for residents in the physical rehabilitation program of nearby Montefiore Hospital ? a kind of refresher course, as well as a chance for residents to augment their clinical experience.

"I think more and more schools and hospitals are realizing that they want to add this kind of additional education for residents," course director Sherry Downie, a professor of clinical anatomy and structural biology at Einstein, told LiveScience.

During the course, the residents study the musculoskeletal system of six major body areas: wrist and hand; shoulder; head and neck; lumbar spine; hip; and knee and ankle. They spend several sessions reviewing the basic anatomy, and then they have a chance to practice clinical tests on medical student volunteers acting as patients. This allows the residents to see how the various body systems function in living humans, then go back to the cadavers to gain an internal view of the relevant body parts.

For example, the resident might want to test for carpal tunnel syndrome, a painful condition caused by a pinched nerve in the wrist. The resident could perform "Phalen's maneuver," a diagnostic test for this condition, on the living volunteer patient, and then look at the nerves themselves on a cadaver. "We'll see something in our patients and we'll say, 'Why is this happening?' We'll go straight to that organ or that joint and we'll inspect it on the cadaver and find out what's going on," said third-year Montefiore resident Antigone Argyriou, one of the students in the anatomy course.

In the clinic, you can see that patients are in pain, but you can't see what's going on underneath the skin, Argyriou said. Having the cadavers is "like having X-ray vision," she said, "because then you can see the physics and see exactly why the pathology is painful."

The course also gives the residents a refresher of their basic anatomy knowledge. "I haven't dissected since medical school, and that was years ago, so it's nice to come back here and see it all over again now that I have a better understanding of it," Argyriou said.

The anatomy lab experience is very different as a resident than as a first-year medical student. First-year students are mostly focused on identifying structures from their textbook, whereas residents are interested in how the anatomy has clinical value, said fourth-year resident Sugym Kim.

For Kim and other residents who are returning for their third or fourth year, the lab is also a valuable teaching opportunity. It helps the junior residents understand why they're learning the anatomy, and how a musculoskeletal exam works, Kim said. And like Olson, he doesn't see the course going out of style:

"Anatomy is the basic foundation of medical science," Kim said. "It's just a basic, fundamental course you can't avoid or substitute with anything else."

Follow?Tanya Lewis?on?Twitter?and?Google+.?Follow us?@livescience,?Facebook?&?Google+. Original article on?LiveScience.com.

Copyright 2013 LiveScience, a TechMediaNetwork company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/why-anatomy-lab-remains-fixture-medicine-133546774.html

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Fire breaks out at collapsed factory in Bangladesh

SAVAR, Bangladesh (AP) -- A fire broke out late Sunday in the wreckage of the garment factory that collapsed last week in Bangladesh, with smoke pouring from the piles of shattered concrete and some of the rescue efforts forced to stop.

The fire came four days after the collapse, as rescuers were trying to free a woman they found trapped in the rubble. The flames broke out when sparks were generated by those rescuers trying to cut through a steel rod to reach the woman, said a volunteer rescuer, Syed Al-Amin Roman. At least three rescue workers were injured in the fire, he said.

Rescuers have retreated from the part of the wreckage where the fire erupted, but were still trying to reach any possible survivors in other parts of the destroyed eight-story building.

Firefighters were frantically hosing down the flames.

"Hopefully we will be able to control it," said Brig. Gen. Mohammed Siddiqul Alam Shikder, who is overseeing rescue operations.

It wasn't immediately clear what happened to the trapped woman.

The fire came hours after the owner of the illegally-constructed building was captured Sunday at a border crossing with India.

Mohammed Sohel Rana was arrested in Benapole in western Bangladesh, just as he was about to flee into India's West Bengal state, said Jahangir Kabir Nanak, junior minister for local government. Rana was brought back by helicopter to the capital Dhaka where he faced charges of negligence.

Rana's capture brought cheers and applause when it was announced on a loudspeaker at the site of the collapsed building in the Dhaka suburb of Savar.

At least 377 people are confirmed to have died in the Wednesday collapse. Three of the building's floors were built illegally. The death toll is expected to rise but it is already the deadliest tragedy to hit Bangladesh's garment industry, which is worth $20 billion annually and is a mainstay of the economy. The collapse and previous disasters in garment factories have focused attention on the poor working conditions of workers who toil for as little as $38 a month to produce clothing for top international brands.

Bangladesh's garment industry was the third largest in the world in 2011, after China and Italy, having grown rapidly in the past decade. The country's minimum wage is the equivalent of about $38 a month.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/fire-breaks-collapsed-factory-bangladesh-165955376.html

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North Korea Says It Will Indict An American Citizen For Alleged Hostile Acts Against Country

PYONGYANG, North Korea ? North Korea said Saturday it will soon put a detained American on trial for allegedly trying to overthrow the government, further complicating already fraught relations between Pyongyang and Washington.

The indictment of Kenneth Bae comes in the middle of something of a lull after weeks of war threats and other provocative acts by North Korea against the U.S. and South Korea. It has expressed rage over U.N. sanctions over a February nuclear test and ongoing U.S.-South Korean military drills, though analysts say Pyongyang's motive is to get its Korean War foes to negotiate on its own terms.

Bae, identified in North Korean state media by his Korean name, Pae Jun Ho, is a tour operator of Korean descent who was arrested after arriving with a tour on Nov. 3 in Rason, a special economic zone bordering China and Russia.

He is the sixth American detained in North Korea since 2009. The other Americans were eventually deported or released after high-profile diplomatic interventions, including some involving former Presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. Analysts say the North will likely soon hand Bae a harsh punishment to use him as a bargaining chip in possible negotiations with the United States.

"The preliminary inquiry into crimes committed by American citizen Pae Jun Ho closed," the official Korean Central News Agency said in a brief report. "In the process of investigation he admitted that he committed crimes aimed to topple the DPRK with hostility toward it. His crimes were proved by evidence."

DPRK is the acronym for the North's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

Under North Korea's criminal code, terrorist acts include murdering, kidnapping and injuring the country's citizens can lead to a death sentence or life in jail.

North Korea and the United States fought the 1950-53 Korean War and still don't have diplomatic relations. The Swedish Embassy in Pyongyang represents the United States.

KCNA didn't say when Bae's trial will take place or what the charges were.

North Korea's state media and the U.S. government have made little information about Bae public.

But his friends, colleagues and South Korean activists specializing in North Korea affairs said Bae is a Christian missionary based in a Chinese border town who frequently made trips to North Korea to feed orphans there. It is not known whether he tried to evangelize while in North Korea.

Officially, North Korea guarantees freedom of religion. In practice, authorities crack down on Christians, who are seen as Western-influenced threats to the government. The distribution of Bibles and secret prayer services can mean banishment to a labor camp or execution, defectors from the country have said.

In 2009, American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee were arrested and sentenced to 12 years of hard labor for trespassing and unspecified hostile acts. They were freed later that year after former President Bill Clinton visited Pyongyang to negotiate their release.


Associated Press reporter Sam Kim contributed from Seoul, South Korea.

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Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/26/north-korea-indict-american_n_3167485.html

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