রবিবার, ৩০ জুন, ২০১৩

YouView adds popular UKTV channels and launches Android app

On demand TV service YouView is to add popular UKTV channels Dave,?Yesterday?and?Really to its?catch-up services this summer.

The three UKTV channels are currently available to watch online and on iOS devices, but will arrive alongside the likes of BBC iPlayer, ITV Player and 4oD in the on-demand section of the YouView library.

The agreement marks the first time UKTV has offered a catch-up service that is purpose-built for TV.

UKTV's home of witty banter, Dave will be the first of its free-to-air channels to launch a seven day catch-up service in July with programming accessible through a Dave-branded on demand portal and through YouView's scroll back programme guide.

This is the first time that UKTV will provide a service to viewers directly through YouView and hit shows such as Dara O Briain: School of Hard Sums, Ross Noble Freewheeling, Dave Gorman Modern Life is Goodish, Alexander Armstrong's Big Ask, Storage Hunters, Lizard Lick Towing, and Russell Howard's Good News will be available to all YouView customers.

YouView also announced today that their app for Android is out now allowing you to record the latest telly from your phone and tablet - from anywhere in the world.?

The Android app is free, and shows you TV listings for the next 7 days, with a Now and Next episode guide across all channels.?Those with phones and tablets running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean should also be able to make use of TalkBack to set recordings with your voice.

Whether your Android phone or tablet is connected to WiFi or 3G/4G, you'll be able to access the remote record feature.?

Source: http://www.vodprofessional.com/news/2q2013/youview-adds-popular-uktv-channels-and-launches-android-app/

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শুক্রবার, ২৮ জুন, ২০১৩

Hernandez headed back to court day after arrest

ATTLEBORO, Mass. (AP) ? Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez will be back in court for a bail review hearing, a day after he was charged with murder.

A spokesman for the Bristol County sheriff says the 23-year-old Hernandez will be in a Fall River court Thursday afternoon.

A judge ordered Hernandez held without bail on Wednesday on a charge of murder and five weapons counts.

Hernandez is accused in what a prosecutor called the execution-style shooting of Odin Lloyd, a friend and a semi-pro football player. Prosecutors say Hernandez was upset that Lloyd had talked to certain people at a nightclub.

Hernandez's lawyer called the case against his client circumstantial.

Hernandez was arrested Wednesday morning and cut by the Patriots less than two hours later.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/hernandez-headed-back-court-day-arrest-132419602.html

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মঙ্গলবার, ২৫ জুন, ২০১৩

Sugar solution makes tissues see-through

June 23, 2013 ? Japanese researchers have developed a new sugar and water-based solution that turns tissues transparent in just three days, without disrupting the shape and chemical nature of the samples. Combined with fluorescence microscopy, this technique enabled them to obtain detailed images of a mouse brain at an unprecedented resolution.

The team from the RIKEN Center for Developmental biology reports their finding today in Nature Neuroscience.

Over the past few years, teams in the USA and Japan have reported a number of techniques to make biological samples transparent, that have enabled researchers to look deep down into biological structures like the brain.

"However, these clearing techniques have limitations because they induce chemical and morphological damage to the sample and require time-consuming procedures," explains Dr. Takeshi Imai, who led the study.

SeeDB, an aqueous fructose solution that Dr. Imai developed with colleagues Drs. Meng-Tsen Ke and Satoshi Fujimoto, overcomes these limitations.

Using SeeDB, the researchers were able to make mouse embryos and brains transparent in just three days, without damaging the fine structures of the samples, or the fluorescent dyes they had injected in them. They could then visualize the neuronal circuitry inside a mouse brain, at the whole-brain scale, under a customized fluorescence microscope without making mechanical sections through the brain.

They describe the detailed wiring patterns of commissural fibers connecting the right and left hemispheres of the cerebral cortex, in three dimensions, for the first time.

Dr. Imai and colleagues report that they were also able to visualize in three dimensions the wiring of mitral cells in the olfactory bulb, which is involved the detection of smells, at single-fiber resolution.

"Because SeeDB is inexpensive, quick, easy and safe to use, and requires no special equipment, it will prove useful for a broad range of studies, including the study of neuronal circuits in human samples," explain the authors.

Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/top_news/top_science/~3/4Wo5sA_hYKA/130623144947.htm

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Blackhawks rally to win Stanley Cup

BOSTON (AP) ? An NHL-record unbeaten streak to start the lockout-shortened season.

Three straight victories to clinch the title.

From beginning to end, the Chicago Blackhawks skated away from the rest of the league.

Bryan Bickell and Dave Bolland scored 17 seconds apart in the final 1:16 and the Blackhawks staged a stunning rally to win Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final 3-2 on Monday night for their second NHL championship in four seasons.

Jonathan Toews returned from injury to add a goal, and Corey Crawford made 23 saves for Chicago in the first final round between Original Six teams since 1979.

"I still can't believe that finish," Crawford said. "Oh my God, we never quit."

Patrick Kane, whose overtime goal in Game 6 beat Philadelphia to win the 2010 championship, was voted the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoffs MVP.

"It was the best year of my life, just playing with these guys," Kane said.

Toews scored his third goal of the playoffs to tie it for the Blackawks at 4:24 of the second of Game 6 ? exactly two minutes after teammate Andrew Shaw was penalized for roughing.

"In 2010, we didn't really know what we were doing," Toews said. "We just, we played great hockey and we were kind of oblivious to how good we were playing.

" This time around, we know definitely how much work it takes and how much sacrifice it takes to get back here and this is an unbelievable group. We've been through a lot together this year and this is a sweet way to finish it off."

Boston, needing a win to extend the series to a deciding Game 7, came out aggressively and led 1-0 after one period on Chris Kelly's second goal of the playoffs. The Bruins outshot the Blackhawks 12-6 in the first period but the margin dropped to 18-15 through 40 minutes.

Each team got one of its best players back when Toews and Boston alternate captain Patrice Bergeron returned to the lineup after leaving the Blackhawks' 3-1 win with injuries on Saturday.

Toews scored when he got past Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara along the boards in the neutral zone. Chicago's captain skated up the right side and fired a hard shot from the right faceoff dot that beat goalie Tuukka Rask between his pads.

It was Toews' second goal in three games. Of Chicago's last 10 goals, Chara was on the ice for nine.

Boston right wing Jaromir Jagr was shaken up in the first period. He returned for the second but left the bench, and Tyler Seguin replaced him on the second line with left wing Brad Marchand and center Bergeron.

The play that led to Kelly's goal began after a faceoff that rookie defenseman Torey Krug rushed in to tip toward a teammate. The puck went to Daniel Paille, standing about 40 feet on the left. He passed to Seguin, who caught the puck with his right glove in the slot and dropped it.

Seguin then passed to Kelly, who scored his second goal of the playoffs 7:19 into the game.

It came just seven seconds after a whistle stopped a scrum in front of the net that followed an extended period of pressure by the Bruins.

Just two minutes after the goal, Chicago had one of its best chances of the period when Michal Frolik skated in with the puck behind the defense and fired a 15-foot drive from the left, but Rask made the save.

Boston had another solid chance at 12:24 when Milan Lucic took a 15-foot shot from the slot that Crawford stopped.

After having no power plays in Game 5, the Bruins had four failed advantages in the first two periods.

With 4:01 left in the first, Shaw was struck in the face by a puck when it deflected off the shaft of his stick after Boston's Shawn Thornton shot it. He lay on the ice before getting up and skating off slowly.

Toews was on Chicago's first shift of the game. Bergeron had left Game 5 with an undisclosed injury after playing just 49 seconds in the second period.

Five of the last nine Cup finals have gone seven games, including in 2011 when the Bruins overcame a 3-2 series deficit and won their first championship since 1972 by winning Game 6 in Boston and Game 7 in Vancouver.

In 2010, Chicago won its first NHL title since 1961 on Kane's overtime goal. As they did this year, the Blackhawks won Game 5 to take a 3-2 series lead.

This year's finals have been extremely tight, with three of the first five games going to overtime. Chicago won the opener in three overtimes, then Boston won 2-1 in one extra period and 2-0. The Blackhawks regained home-ice advantage with a 6-5 overtime win in a wild Game 4 in Boston before returning home for Saturday night's win.

Teams that have won Game 5 after splitting the first four have won the Cup 15 of 22 times since the best-of-seven format began in 1939. But the loser of Game 5 the past six times has won four championships, including the Bruins against the Canucks.

Last season, the Los Angeles Kings beat the New Jersey Devils in six games. This season, the Blackhawks beat the Kings in five games to reach the Cup finals, clinching the series on Kane's goal in overtime.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/blackhawks-stage-rally-win-stanley-cup-030258977.html

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শনিবার, ২২ জুন, ২০১৩

Painting Project heads to extremes in second phase


Isa B, who says she finds beauty in the least beautiful material things, creates intricate scenes of miniature piles of garbage, such as Dumping Ground 4.

Photograph by: Galerie Dominique Bouffard

MONTREAL - The paintings may be more extreme at Galerie de l?UQAM?s Painting Project than the Extreme Painting exhibitions taking place in 20 of Montreal?s private galleries this summer, but time will tell where the most challenging art will be seen.

Part 2 of UQAM?s Painting Project has opened and the exhibition of single works by 31 artists from across Canada is the closing chapter of a research project meant to catalogue the diversity of concerns and issues that painters are dealing with right now.

The resulting exhibition is didactic and sometimes arid, especially the works grouped under the heading Painting as Subject. Some viewers might wonder why they must endure Justin Stephens?s investigations into the material reality of the painting medium ? a canvas with holes and little more than a scrubbed-paint surface with some bits of debris attached.

But this is what happens when an artist has only one work to represent a lifetime of inquiry. It would help both the artist and the viewer to have some of the information that?s available in the excellent catalogue to be posted near the painting. A private gallery has an eager owner or assistant to discuss the artwork, but visitors to public galleries of contemporary art are usually left on their own.

Curators often say that the contemporary artist wants to elicit an immediate and unfiltered reaction from the viewer, but why handicap the visitor who isn?t educated in the issues and theories of contemporary art?

This is not to denigrate the Painting Project. There is much to enjoy, including Pierre Durette?s fine ink drawing encased in acrylic and fellow Quebecer Anthony Burnham?s trompe l?oeil painting of crumpled sheets of black paper.

Under the heading Figures of Reality, Jack Bishop creates the ambience of coming off a highway at dusk and seeing the familiar gas stations and fast-food restaurants. A Tim Hortons beckons in the twilight.

Hybrid Practices includes an acrylic and resin painting with a long title by DaveandJenn (David Foy and Jennifer Saleik, of Calgary). They painted trees, objects and figures on separate layers of resin, creating an 11-cm-thick painting with 3D depth.

Jeremy Hof applies multiple layers of acrylic paint, then sands through the layers to discover an abstract image multicoloured within a sculptural object.

Hof?s sculpted paintings would fit the Painting as Object theme at Galerie Dominique Bouffard, where seven artists are exhibiting as part of the Extreme Painting series of exhibitions organized by the Contemporary Art Galleries Association.

Nicolas Ranellucci?s canvas sandwiches ooze paint, while Louis Bouvier fills real ice cream cones with swirls of paint straight from the tube.

Pascal Caputo?s portraits contain no figures. Bare canvas represents a figure in its lushly painted environment. Gallery owner Dominique Bouffard said Caputo develops the image on a computer, leaving evidence of his process in the impossibly long file numbers he uses as titles.

The computer also figures in S?bastian Maltais?s portrait Dpi (Dots Per Inch). Half of his subject?s head is rendered as large pixels that resolve themselves at a distance into the other half of the face.

The most intriguing Painting as Object is the agglomeration of sculptural wall pieces created from found objects and paint by Isa B (Isabelle Beaupr?). She uses recycled bits of building materials like concrete, wood and metal ?as an individual builds a house? to construct her sculptural paintings, she writes in her artist?s statement.

In a wall full of Dumping Grounds ? where objects regain some of their value ? she creates the most intricate scenes of miniature piles of garbage, with recognizable objects like a tiny bottle of Prestone antifreeze.

Isa B writes on her blog (isa-b-art.blogspot.com) that she finds beauty in the least beautiful material things.

The Painting Project: A Snapshot of Painting in Canada, Part 2, continues until July 6 at Galerie de l?UQAM, 1400 Berri St. Visit galerie.uqam.ca.

The Painting as Object continues to July 21 at Galerie Dominique Bouffard, 1000 Amherst St., Suite 101. Visit galeriedominiquebouffard.com.

Extreme Painting is a series of exhibitions at 20 private galleries this summer. Information: peintureextreme.com. Extreme Painting vernissages take place Saturday, June 22?at Galerie Laroche/Joncas (larochejoncas.com) and Galerie Lilian Rodriguez (galerielilianrodriguez.com). Exhibitions opened this week at Galerie Simon Blais (galeriesimonblais.com), Beaux-arts des Am?riques (beauxartsdesameriques.com) and Galerie Donald Browne (galeriedonaldbrowne.com).

- - -

Two Concordia winners: Meghan Myres, a student at Concordia University, has won the Albert-Dumouchel prize for printmaking.

The Albert-Dumouchel prize is worth $2,000 in cash and includes a production residency at the Engramme printmaking studio in Quebec City.

?tienne Lafrance, who graduated from Concordia University in 2007 and who is represented by Galerie Dominique Bouffard, has won the Bourse Plein Sud. The $3,000 award, given to an artist with fewer than eight years as a professional, includes an exhibition. Lafrance?s prize was announced at the vernissage for the exhibition of the work of Simon Bilodeau, the 2012 winner.

Simon Bilodeau: Ce qu?il reste du monde continues until July 6 at Plein Sud, 150 de Gentilly St. E., Suite D-0626, Longueuil. Visit plein-sud.org.

- - -

The Montreal Art Centre has created the Global Art League International Exhibition, which opens with a gala dinner on July 19. Artists who join the art league will have two works in the exhibition and a listing on the league?s online gallery. Five artists will share $2,000 in prizes.

The Global Art League International Exhibition runs July 20 to Aug. 20 at the Montreal Art Centre, 1844 William St. Visit globalartleague.com.


? Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette







Source: http://www.montrealgazette.com/entertainment/Painting+Project+heads+extremes+second+phase/8561607/story.html

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Obama nominates Comey to head FBI

WASHINGTON (AP) ? President Barack Obama has named James Comey to be the new FBI director. Comey was the No. 2 Justice Department official under Republican President George W. Bush.

Obama says Comey is a model of "fierce independence and deep integrity."

Comey gained attention for blocking efforts by the Bush White House to reauthorize a no-warrant wiretapping program in 2004.

If confirmed by the Senate, he would replace Robert Mueller and serve a 10-year tenure.

Obama says Mueller displayed a "steady hand and strong leadership" during his time at the head of the FBI.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-nominates-comey-head-fbi-182258647.html

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Spain detains 8 accused of sending fighters to Syria

(Reuters) - Spain arrested eight people in its North African enclave of Ceuta early on Friday on suspicion of recruiting fighters for a branch of al Qaeda in Syria, the Interior Ministry said.

The operation was carried out by police intelligence services and the Spanish Civil Guard, it said.

"The dismantled Spanish-Moroccan network was, according to police investigations, responsible for sending jihadists to groups affiliated with al Qaeda in Syria," the ministry said in a statement. The network sent dozens of people, including minors, from the enclave and other parts of Morocco, the ministry said, adding that some of the recruits had taken part in suicide attacks and others had joined training camps.

The network, based in Ceuta and the Moroccan town of Fnideq, was responsible for recruitment, indoctrination and travel financing, the statement said.

More than 93,000 people have been killed in the two-year-old Syrian conflict that has turned into a confrontation between Shi'ite Iran, which supports President Bashar al-Assad, and Sunni Arab Gulf nations, which back the Syrian rebels.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/spain-detains-8-accused-sending-fighters-syria-110736168.html

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শুক্রবার, ২১ জুন, ২০১৩

Russia's Putin warns state firm managers on performance

Virginia Republican lieutenant governor candidate E. W. Jackson said that the American government has been worse for "the black family" than slavery was during an event on Wednesday to celebrate Juneteenth, the holiday marking the end of slavery. "In 1960 most black children were raised in two parent monogamous families," Jackson said, according to the Virginia Daily Press. "By now, by this time, we only have 20 percent of black children being raised in two-parent monogamous families with a married man and woman raising those children. It wasn't slavery that did that. ...

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/russias-putin-warns-state-firm-managers-performance-114320266.html

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These specs preserve your privacy in a world of cameras (video)


Since surveillance culture is at the top of the news agenda, this new invention from Japan's National Institute of Informatics couldn't be more timely. It's a pair of goggles that blocks facial recognition algorithms and ensures no-one can snap a pic of your mush without your permission. The wearable uses 11 near-infrared LEDs which shine a bright light that's invisible to humans, but will dazzle any passing cameras. Admittedly, the technology is useless for cameras that aren't sensitive to infra-red, which is why the institute is also working on reflective materials that'll work with any imaging sensor -- but that, unfortunately, isn't quite ready for prime-time. Curious as to see it in action? Head on past the break for the video.

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বৃহস্পতিবার, ২০ জুন, ২০১৩

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বুধবার, ১৯ জুন, ২০১৩

Miami avoids elimination, sends NBA Finals to Game 7

MIAMI (AP) ? LeBron James led a title-saving charge, and now his crown will be on the line one more time in Game 7.

James powered Miami to a frantic fourth-quarter rally and overtime escape as the Heat beat the San Antonio Spurs 103-100 Tuesday night to extend the NBA Finals as far as they can go and keep Miami?s repeat chances alive.

Losing his headband but keeping his cool while playing the entire second half and overtime, James finished with 32 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists, making the go-ahead basket with 1:43 remaining in the extra period.

?If we were going to go down tonight, we?re going to go down with me leaving every little bit of energy that I had on the floor,? James said.

Tim Duncan scored 30 points for the Spurs, his most in an NBA Finals game since Game 1 in 2003, but was shut out after the third quarter. He added 17 rebounds.

Game 7 will be here Thursday, the NBA?s first do-or-die game to determine its champion since the Lakers beat the Celtics in 2010.

?They?re the best two words in sports: Game 7,? Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.

The Spurs looked headed to a fifth title in five chances when they built a 13-point lead with under 4 minutes left in the third quarter, then grabbed a five-point edge late in regulation after blowing the lead.

But James hit a 3-pointer and Ray Allen tied it with another. Just 5.2 seconds remained in regulation. The Heat were that close to the edge.

James was just 3 of 12 after three quarters, the Heat trailing by 10 and frustration apparent among the players and panic setting in among the fans.

Nothing to worry. Not with James playing like this.

He finished 11 of 26, even making a steal after his basket had given Miami a 101-100 edge in the OT.

Before that, he was 12 minutes from hearing the familiar criticisms about not being able to get it done, from having to watch a team celebrate on his home floor again.

Then he changed the game and erased that story.

The Heat, who haven?t lost consecutive games since Jan. 8 and 10, had too much defense and way too much James for the Spurs in the final 17 minutes. They are trying to become fourth team to win the final two games at home since the NBA went to the 2-3-2 format for the finals in 1985.

James came in averaging 31.5 points in elimination games, highest in NBA history, according to a stat provided through the NBA by the Elias Sports Bureau.

This wasn?t quite the 45-point performance in Game 6 of last year?s Eastern Conference finals in Boston, but given the higher stakes may go down as more important ? if the Heat follow it with another victory Thursday.

The Heat were in the same place as they were in 2011 at the end of their Big Three?s first season together, coming home from Texas facing a 3-2 deficit in the finals.

This is a different team. And oh, what a different James.

They said they welcomed this challenge, a chance to show they how much mentally tougher they were than the team the Dallas Mavericks easily handled in Game 6 that night.

James made sure they did, looking nothing like the player who was so bad in the fourth quarters during that series.

He was simply unstoppable down the stretch of this one.

Kawhi Leonard had 22 points and 11 rebounds for the Spurs. Tony Parker had 19 points and eight assists, but shot just 6 of 23 from the field.

The Spurs had one final chance down 103-100, but Chris Bosh blocked Danny Green?s 3-pointer from the corner as time expired.

Bosh had said Green wouldn?t get open the way he has all series ? and he didn?t.

Green finished 1 of 5 from behind the arc after going 25 of 38 on 3-pointers (65.8 percent) in the first five games.

The Heat, the NBA?s 66-win powerhouse during the regular season, will be playing a seventh game for the second straight round, having needed to go the distance to beat the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference finals.

?See you in Game 7!? the public address announcer hollered as Heat fans either left with or tossed their usual white T-shirts that hang on chairs in the arena. These read ?First to 16 Wins,? meaning the number of victories it takes to win the championship.

The race will go down to a final day.

The Heat are 13-0 after losses over the last five months, though this was nothing like the previous 12 that had come by an average of nearly 20 points. Nor was it like the previous four games of this series, which had all been blowouts after the Spurs pulled out a four-point victory in Game 1.

San Antonio had an 11-0 run in the first half, then a 13-3 burst in the third quarter for a 71-58 lead, and a final flurry late in regulation that seemed to have them ready to walk off with another title.

Parker?s 3-pointer over James tied it at 89 with 1:27 left. He then came up with a steal, spinning into the lane for a 91-89 lead with 58 seconds to go. Miami coughed it up again and Manu Ginobili made two free throws, and he made another after a third straight Miami turnover to put the Spurs ahead 94-89.

James nailed a 3-pointer with 20 seconds left, and the Heat had one more chance after Leonard made just one to give the Spurs a 95-92 edge. James missed but Bosh got the rebound out to Allen, the league?s career leader in 3-pointers, who made another one from the corner to even it up.

The Spurs went ahead by three again in overtime, but James found a cutting Allen for a basket, then scored himself to put the Heat on top. They clinched it when Bosh blocked San Antonio?s final two shot attempts.

Bosh finished with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Source: http://www.observer-reporter.com/article/20130619/SPORTS04/130619294&source=RSS

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We ignore scientists at our peril | rabble.ca

Please support our coverage of democratic movements and?become a supporting member of?rabble.ca.

It?s happening again. Research confirms agreement among most climate scientists that we are altering the Earth?s climate, mainly by burning fossil fuels. And industrial interests, backed by climate change deniers, pull out every trick to sow doubt and confusion. What will it take for us to start seriously tackling the problem?

For the latest study, investigators led by John Cook at Skeptical Science examined abstracts of 12,000 peer-reviewed papers on climate science. They also received comments from 1,200 scientists, who rated more than 2,100 full studies. In both cases, more than 97 per cent of studies that took a position on the causes of global warming said human activity is a primary factor. Less than one per cent rejected the consensus position. The results are consistent with previous research.

As expected, deniers are out in full force, many employing methods common to those who reject science. Medical scientists Pascal Diethelm and Martin McKee?examined these tactics in the European Journal of Public Health: cherry picking, reference to fake experts, misrepresentation and logical fallacies, impossible expectations of what research can deliver and conspiracy theories. Deniers often rely on talking points spread by a handful of usual suspects, including Christopher Monckton in the U.K., the Heartland Institute and Anthony Watts in the U.S. and Friends of Science and Tom Harris in Canada.

The Alberta-based group was caught several years ago funnelling money ? most from fossil fuel companies ? through a ?Science Education Fund? at the University of Calgary. It was used to create a disinformation campaign and video with Harris, who then worked with PR firm APCO Worldwide and now heads up an organization called (ironically) the International Climate Science Coalition, which rejects the scientific consensus on human-caused climate change. According to Desmog Blog, Friends of Science has misrepresented the recent survey, calling it ?careless incitement of a misinformed and frightened public, when in fact the sun is the main driver of climate change; not human activity or carbon dioxide.?

Another recent misrepresentation concerns research by the U.K. Met Office, which deniers falsely claim shows the Earth hasn?t warmed for 17 years.

Science isn?t perfect, but it?s one of the best tools we have for understanding our place in the cosmos. When people around the world apply rigorous scientific method to study our actions and their impacts on the things that keep us alive and healthy ? clean air, water, soil and biodiverse plants and animals ? we must listen, not just about climate, but about a range of issues.

Many scientists are saying we?re creating serious problems ? but we have solutions. A recent statement, ?Scientists? Consensus on?Maintaining Humanity?s Life Support Systems in the 21st Century?, lists five major challenges: climate disruption, extinctions, loss of ecosystem diversity, pollution, and human population growth and resource consumption.

More than 2,200 have signed, stating, ?As scientists who study the interaction of people with the rest of the biosphere using a wide range of approaches, we agree that the evidence that humans are damaging their ecological life-support systems is overwhelming.?

Some may claim this is ?alarmist?. It is ? because the situation is alarming. It goes on: ?For humanity?s continued health and prosperity, we all ? individuals, businesses, political leaders, religious leaders, scientists, and people in every walk of life ? must work hard to solve these five global problems starting today.?

Many of the proposed solutions have long been advocated by people working in science, the environment and even business: conserving energy and reducing fossil fuel use; better ecosystem management through processes like natural capital evaluation; improved food production and distribution and waste reduction; regulating and preventing pollution; and stabilizing population growth through better education, health care, family-planning services, economic opportunities and women?s rights.

Humanity has changed direction before. When our tools become outdated, we invent new ones. It?s why in many countries, we no longer rely on slavery to maintain economies, we can all vote regardless of race or sex and we enjoy longer and healthier lives than before. Many systems we?ve invented don?t apply to current circumstances. We can and must change the way we act. That requires listening to scientists and those who are working on solutions, and not to the naysayers and deniers who would keep us stalled in a doomed spiral.

Written with contributions from David Suzuki Foundation Communications Manager Ian Hanington.

Learn more at www.davidsuzuki.org.

Source: http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/david-suzuki/2013/06/we-ignore-scientists-our-peril

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Afghan Taliban say they killed 4 U.S. troops

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) ? The Taliban claimed responsibility Wednesday for an attack in Afghanistan that killed four American troops just hours after the insurgent group announced it would hold talks with the U.S. on finding a political solution to ending the nearly 12-year war in the country.

The deadly attack underscores the challenges ahead in trying to end the violence roiling Afghanistan through peace negotiations in Qatar with militants still fighting on the ground.

Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said the insurgents fired two rockets into the Bagram Air Base outside the Afghan capital, Kabul, late on Tuesday. American officials confirmed the base had come under attack by indirect fire ? likely a mortar or rocket ? and that four U.S. troops were killed.

Also Tuesday, five Afghan police officers were killed at a security outpost in Helmand province by apparent Taliban infiltrators ? the latest in a string of so-called "insider attacks" that have shaken the confidence of the nascent Afghan security forces.

The attacks came as the Taliban opened a political office in the Qatari capital of Doha, and announced they were ready for peace talks. The decision was a reversal of months of failed efforts to start negotiations while Taliban militants intensified a campaign targeting urban centers and government installations across Afghanistan.

President Barack Obama cautioned that the peace talks with the Taliban would be neither quick nor easy but that their opening a political office in Doha was an "important first step toward reconciliation" between the Islamic militants and the government of Afghanistan.

In setting up the office, the Taliban said they were willing to use all legal means to end what they called the occupation of Afghanistan ? but did not say they would immediately stop fighting.

American officials said the U.S. and Taliban representatives will hold bilateral meetings in the coming days. Afghan President Hamid Karzai's High Peace Council is expected to follow up with its own talks with the Taliban a few days later.

The Taliban announcement followed a milestone handover in Afghanistan earlier Tuesday as Afghan forces formally took the lead from the U.S.-led NATO coalition for security nationwide. It marked a turning point for American and NATO military forces, which will now move entirely into a supporting role.

The handover paves the way for the departure of the majority of coalition forces ? currently numbering about 100,000 troops from 48 countries, including 66,000 Americans ? within 18 months.

The NATO-led force is to be cut in half by the end of the year, and by the end of 2014 all combat troops are to leave and be replaced ? contingent on Afghan governmental approval ? by a smaller force that would be on hand for training and advising.

The U.S. has not yet said how many troops will remain in Afghanistan, but it is thought that it would be a force made up of about 9,000 Americans and 6,000 allies.

Six years ago, Afghan security forces numbered fewer than 40,000, and have grown to about 352,000 today. But questions remain if they are good enough to fight alone.

In the Helmand attack late Tuesday, local official Mohammad Fahim Mosazai said five police officers who had only been on the local force for three months were killed, apparently by five of their fellow officers. He blamed the killings on Taliban infiltrators, and said the suspects escaped with the victims' weapons.

In a similar attack in Helmand a week ago, six policemen were found shot dead at their checkpoint, and there have been several other such incidents in the past year, including officers poisoned while eating.

Taliban insurgents have warned they would infiltrate Afghan security forces to carry out insider attacks.

Overnight in the eastern province of Nangrahar, police ambushed Taliban fighters outside a village in the Surkh Rod district, killing four and capturing two militants. Two police officers were wounded in the fighting, said deputy provincial police chief Masoon Khan Hashimi.


Associated Press writer David Rising contributed to this report from Kabul.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/afghan-taliban-killed-4-us-troops-063613090.html

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Obama warns EU over high youth unemployment

BERLIN (AP) ? President Barack Obama is suggesting Europe may need to adjust its economic policies to tackle high youth unemployment.

Obama said at a news conference in Berlin Wednesday that he has confidence in the eurozone's policies to resolve the 17-nation bloc's debt crisis, but also warned that policymakers must not lead to lose sight "of our main goal, which is to make people's life better."

Unemployment in the eurozone has shot up to a record 12 percent overall. Youth unemployment in Spain and Greece is above 50 percent.

Obama ? speaking alongside German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has championed Europe's focus on budget cuts and structural reforms ? says if youth unemployment goes too high it's necessary to "modulate" the approach to "ensure that we don't just lose a generation."

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-warns-eu-over-high-youth-unemployment-132020300.html

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Use PRISM Break To Reduce Your NSA-Related Paranoia

Use PRISM Break To Reduce Your NSA-Related Paranoia

Okay PRISM. It's enough already. Erosion of privacy! Whatever. Apathy is setting in. But actually we should probably all be putting some thought into what we're doing with our private information. Maybe you're already trying to. But it can feel like the walls have eyes no matter where you go. Prism Break is a guide to opting out.



Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/CvI49UPpLWw/use-prism-break-to-reduce-your-nsa-related-paranoia-514170500

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Adobe's Q2 Earnings Beat Street With $1.011B In Revenue, $0.36 EPS, 700K Paying Creative Cloud Subscribers

adobe-logoAdobe just reported earnings for its second financial quarter of 2013. The company reported revenue of $1.011 billion and non-GAAP operating income of $247.3 for an earnings per share of $0.36 (though diluted GAAP earnings were only $0.15). That's a little bit better than most analysts expected, especially with respect to the company's earnings per share.

Source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/Hv9VjuMwoWk/

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Coal Debt Roundup: Walter Energy Jumps 16%

Shares of metallurgical coal producer Walter Energy made up for some big recent losses Tuesday, jumping more than 16% following news it won?t refinance bank debt.

Walter Energy (WLT) stock closed up $1.93, or 16.5%, to $13.63 Tuesday. Walter stock has fallen 35% over the past month, more than twice the decline of the larger major U.S. coal players. ?Its market value is now near $852 million and more than a quarter of the shares were being sold short as of the end of May. But Morgan Stanley reiterated its $47 price target for Walter on Tuesday.

Another small metallurgical or ?met? coal producer,?James River Coal?(JRCC),?jumped Tuesday, up 9%.?Alpha Natural Resources? (ANR) rose 2.7%?and?Arch Coal?(ACI) ?rose nearly 4%. Shares of Peabody Energy?(BTU), the largest U.S. producer, were up fractionally. Bankrupt Patriot Coal (PCXCQ) rallied 12%.

Coal stocks have underperformed the broader market due to weak demand and prices, especially for met coal used in steel production. With prolonged weakness in the Chinese economy, the prolonged weak cycle is shining a light on some producers? balance sheets. Regarding Walter Energy, Morgan Stanley Analysts Evan L. Kurtz, Alexander S. J. Levy and Marcus Lindberg write that:

Source: http://blogs.barrons.com/stockstowatchtoday/2013/06/18/coal-debt-roundup-walter-energy-jumps-16/?mod=BOLBlog

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Solar plane lands at Washington on journey across U.S.

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Solar plane lands at Washington on journey across U.S.
An airplane entirely powered by the sun landed in Washington on Sunday after a flight from St. Louis, the next-to-last leg of a journey across the United States intended to boost support for clean energy technologies.

Source: Reuters
Posted on: Monday, Jun 17, 2013, 8:12am
Views: 14

Source: http://www.labspaces.net/128648/Solar_plane_lands_at_Washington_on_journey_across_U_S_

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মঙ্গলবার, ১৮ জুন, ২০১৩

Three ways to bring added entertainment to your outdoor experiences

There?s a reason it?s called the ?great? outdoors. Nothing can quite compare with the beauty and majesty of wild places. When summer rolls around, the urge to explore grows for many people, inspiring millions of travelers to camp, hike and tour the country?s natural wonders. Modern outdoor enthusiasts have discovered that technology makes it even more fun to spend time in off-the-beaten-track locations.

The days of canvas tents and campsite boredom are long gone, thanks to tech innovations that are changing the face of outdoor experiences. For example, have you ever wanted to watch a little TV while out on the boat or at the campsite? Maybe kick back with some s?mores and a movie? Today, you truly can do it ? and you?ll get much more than you ever expected.

There are a few ways to bring your favorite programs and movies with you into the outdoors, covering a range in terms of both what you can do with them and where you can use them. These are the key choices to consider before you pack up for your next outdoor adventure:

* Good: A TV or computer with a DVD player is one way to get the movies you want, as well as some TV shows (provided they?re out on DVD). If you don?t mind a limited selection and have the storage capacity to bring along all the titles you or the kids might want, it?s a solid, basic option.

* Better: Being able to pick up free local channels gives you access to the network programs such as The Big Bang Theory, NCIS and The Voice, plus local news that will keep you up to date on regional happenings and the all-important weather forecast. But you?ll need the right antenna. The RAYZAR Amped HD antenna from Winegard Co. has the strength to pull signals from 50 miles away. Even if you?re deep in the wilderness, you can still get news, entertainment and a great picture. It?s easy to set up, portable and is designed for use indoors only ? perfect for RVs, boats and campers.

* Best: For the ultimate range in entertainment, a satellite TV antenna is the optimal choice. The CarryOut Anser, also made by Winegard, works with both DISH and DirecTV subscriptions, giving you access to a vast array of programming such as Duck Dynasty, Sports Center and more. With this system you can either use your satellite receiver from home or get DISH pay as you go programming and pay for only 30 days of programming at a time with no contracts or subscriptions. The portable antenna sets up outdoors quickly and can be used on multiple TVs at once, so everyone can enjoy different shows and movies at the same time.

For the ultimate in outdoor fun, whether you?re camping, traveling, boating or tailgating, don?t count technology out of the equation. With the convenience and fun that these outdoor TV-watching options can offer, they might just be the must-haves on your packing list for years to come. For more information, go to www.winegard.com.

Source: http://www.lifeandleisurenj.com/technology/three-ways-to-bring-added-entertainment-to-your-outdoor-experiences.html

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Testosterone improves verbal learning and memory in postmenopausal women

June 17, 2013 ? Postmenopausal women had better improvement in verbal learning and memory after receiving treatment with testosterone gel, compared with women who received sham treatment with a placebo, a new study found.

Results were presented Monday at The Endocrine Society's 95th Annual Meeting in San Francisco.

"This is the first large, placebo-controlled study of the effects of testosterone on mental skills in postmenopausal women who are not on estrogen therapy," said principal investigator Susan Davis, MBBS (MD), PhD, of Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. "Our study has confirmed our similar findings from two smaller studies in postmenopausal women and suggests that testosterone therapy may protect women against cognitive decline after menopause."

Menopause has been linked with memory decline because of a decrease in levels of the protective hormone estrogen. Yet testosterone also is an important hormone in women because it has a role in sexual desire, bone density and energy while improving mood. In men, studies have shown that testosterone replacement has favorable effects on brain function.

In this new, investigator-initiated study, the Australian researchers randomly assigned 92 healthy postmenopausal women, ages 55 to 65, who were not receiving estrogen therapy, to receive one of two treatments for 26 weeks. The treatments were a testosterone gel (LibiGel, BioSante Pharmaceuticals) applied daily to the upper arm, or a placebo, an identical-appearing gel containing none of the medication. Neither the study participants nor the investigators were aware of which gel the women received.

Before treatment and at 12 and 26 weeks of treatment, subjects underwent comprehensive testing of their cognitive function (mental skills) using a computer-based battery of tests designed for people with normal brain function (CogState). Ninety women completed the study. The investigators found no cognitive differences between groups before the start of treatment.

After 26 weeks, the women who received testosterone therapy had a statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in verbal learning and memory -- how well they recalled words from a list, Davis reported. The average test score for the testosterone-treated group was 1.6 points greater than that of the placebo group. No differences between the groups were evident for any other cognitive test.

Women receiving testosterone therapy reported no major side effects related to the gel. Their testosterone levels increased with treatment but remained in the normal female range.

Although further study is needed in more women, Davis said the results are important. "There is no effective treatment to date to prevent memory decline in women, who are higher risk of dementia than men," she said.

No testosterone-only product has yet received U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for use in women. BioSante provided the study drug and partial funding for this study but had no control over study design or data analysis. CogState Australia provided computation of the cognitive testing, which the researchers then analyzed. Davis reported receiving funding from the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council as a principal research fellow.

Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/most_popular/~3/IG0C0YWkojA/130617142043.htm

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Global cooling as significant as global warming, study of marine ecosystems during Cretaceous period shows

June 16, 2013 ? A "cold snap" 116 million years ago triggered a similar marine ecosystem crisis to the ones witnessed in the past as a result of global warming, according to research published in Nature Geoscience.

The international study involving experts from the universities of Newcastle, UK, Cologne, Frankfurt and GEOMAR-Kiel, confirms the link between global cooling and a crash in the marine ecosystem during the mid-Cretaceous greenhouse period.

It also quantifies for the first time the amplitude and duration of the temperature change. Analysing the geochemistry and micropaleontology of a marine sediment core taken from the North Atlantic Ocean, the team show that a global temperature drop of up to 5oC resulted in a major shift in the global carbon cycle over a period of 2.5 million years.

Occurring during a time of high tectonic activity that drove the breaking up of the super-continent Pangaea, the research explains how the opening and widening of new ocean basins around Africa, South America and Europe created additional space where large amounts of atmospheric CO2 was fixed by photosynthetic organisms like marine algae. The dead organisms were then buried in the sediments on the sea bed, producing organic, carbon rich shale in these new basins, locking away the carbon that was previously in the atmosphere.

The result of this massive carbon fixing mechanism was a drop in the levels of atmospheric CO2, reducing the greenhouse effect and lowering global temperature.

This period of global cooling came to an end after about 2 million years following the onset of a period of intense local volcanic activity in the Indian Ocean. Producing huge volumes of volcanic gas, carbon that had been removed from the atmosphere when it was locked away in the shale was replaced with CO2 from Earth's interior, re-instating a greenhouse effect which led to warmer climate and an end to the "cold snap."

The research team highlight in this study how global climate is intrinsically linked to processes taking place in Earth's interior at million year time scales. These processes can modify ecospace for marine life, driving evolution.

Current research efforts tend to concentrate on global warming and the impact that a rise of a few degrees might have on past and present day ecosystems. This study shows that if global temperatures swing the other way by a similar amount, the result can be just as severe, at least for marine life.

However, the research team emphasise that the observed changes of the Earth system in the Cretaceous happened over millions of years, rather than decades or centennial, which cannot easily be related to our rapidly changing modern climate conditions.

"As always it's a question of fine balance and scale," explains Thomas Wagner, Professor of Earth Systems Science at Newcastle University, and one of the leaders of this study.

"All earth system processes are operating all the time and at different temporal and spatial scales; but when something upsets the balance -- be it a large scale but long term natural phenomenon or a short and massive change to global greenhouse gases due to anthropogenic activity -- there are multiple, potential knock-on effects on the whole system.

"The trick is to identify and quantify the initial drivers and consequences, which remains an ongoing challenge in climate research."

Source: http://feeds.sciencedaily.com/~r/sciencedaily/top_news/top_science/~3/GltB6_CZYnY/130616155209.htm

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সোমবার, ১৭ জুন, ২০১৩

Hang Up and Listen: The Derecho Finals Edition

Listen to Hang Up and Listen with Stefan Fatsis, Josh Levin, and Mike Pesca by clicking the arrow on the audio player below:

Hang Up and Listen is brought to you by?Stamps.com.?Click on the radio microphone and enter HANGUP to get our $110 bonus offer.

In this week?s episode of?Slate?s sports podcast Hang Up and Listen, Stefan Fatsis, Josh Levin, and Mike Pesca discuss the high quality of the NBA Finals games despite the lopsided final scores. They also talk with Puck Daddy?s Greg Wyshynski about the terrific endings from the first two games of the Stanley Cup Finals and Doc Emrick?s fantastic announcing. Finally, they break down the U.S. Open, where players struggled and the USGA sacrificed revenue to hold the event at the tiny Merion Golf Club.

Here are links to some of the articles and other items mentioned on the show:

Hang Up and Listen?s weekly fescue:

Podcast production and edit by Mike Vuolo. Our intern is Michael Gerber.

Source: http://www.slate.com/articles/podcasts/hang_up_and_listen/2013/06/stanley_cup_overtime_hang_up_and_listen_on_the_close_but_lopsided_nba_finals.html

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Code And Theory Founders Tips For Success - Business Insider

See more Small Business, Big Ideas >>

Brandon Ralph and Dan Gardner met when they were just kids. Then they ended up working together as designers at DraftFCB. Later, in 2001, they launched Code and Theory, a full-service design and advertising firm.

Since then they've worked with clients ranging from Lenny Kravitz to Dr Pepper to The Daily Beast. And despite the adage against starting businesses with friends, Gardner attributes a big part of their success to just that.?

In 12 years, the two have built a company with more than 175 employees across the U.S. and Asia and have designed websites including The Verge, Mashable, and Vogue.?

Watch below to learn some of their tips for company builders looking to get to the next level and keep their thinking fresh and exciting:?


Produced by Daniel Goodman and Kamelia Angelova

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/code-and-theory-founders-tips-for-success-2013-6

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US officials say less than 300 phone numbers were investigated in 2012, data thwarted terrorist plots

With all the coverage of PRSIM and the NSA's data collection have been getting recently, it's no surprise that the US government is eager to rationalize its actions. The crux of the latest defense seems to be that the government isn't using its treasure trove of data very often: according to recently declassified documents, the NSA used the database to investigate less than 300 phone numbers last year. These efforts reportedly prevented terrorist actions in more than 20 countries.

It's a small assurance, but a vague one, and the NSA knows it -- according to the Associated Press, the organization is trying to get the records of these thwarted plots declassified to demonstrate the program's value to concerned citizens. The reveal of such data might be a convincing argument, but disquieting revelations continue to roll out: members of congress are now reporting that the NSA has acknowledged that it does not need court authorization to listen to domestic phone calls. Either way, we're certainly open to more government transparency.


Via: CNET (1), (2)

Source: AP

Source: http://feeds.engadget.com/~r/weblogsinc/engadget/~3/LuktATdFukc/

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School prayer: After-school Good News Club is 'Sunday school on steroids'

The school prayer ban is 50 years old this month. Yet there's more religion on campus than ever. The after-school Good News Club, for example, brings the fourth R? ?? religion ?? that follows a day of reading, writing, and arithmetic at 3,200 public schools.

By Lee Lawrence,?Correspondent / June 16, 2013

School prayer was banned by the Supreme Court 50 years ago this month. This photo, taken three years after the ruling, show first-graders in silent prayer in public school in South Carolina where the "prayer issue" was still left to teachers' discretion.



Once a week, Sanders Elementary School reverberates with religious music and the sound of excited children vying for prizes. After a day of reading, writing, and arithmetic, 30 public school students have gone on to their next class: "Sunday school on steroids," as Lin Harrison describes it.

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This is one of more than 4,000 after-school Good News Club programs in 3,200 public elementary schools nationwide; Mr. Harrison, associate pastor at nearby Orange Hill Baptist Church, is one of some 25,000 GNC volunteer teachers.

Supporters hail the GNC for giving children a message of hope and a moral keel. Children can only attend, they point out, with written parental permission. Critics denounce the GNC for inculcating a conservative and highly judgmental interpretation of Christianity in young, malleable minds.

Many of the arguments echo the deliberations of the Supreme Court when, in 2001, it ruled that a school hosting secular after-school programs must allow GNC entry. While the court decided 8 to 1 against school-sponsored prayer, this decision proved more contentious: The GNC free speech ruling passed 6 to 3.

The decision fueled GNC's phenomenal reach, from 17,000 children in 2001 to 156,000 today.

At issue are the content of GNC teachings and its target audience. The GNC, part of the Missouri-based Child Evangelism Fellowship (CEF), uses a curriculum based on a literal reading of the Bible geared toward young children.

Eric Cernyar is a Colorado patent lawyer who assisted with GNC's legal cases and now denounces its teachings as "emphasizing man's sinful nature, how bad and worthless and deserving of death and punishment we are." The aftereffects, he says, can be shame at the onset of adolescent sexual desire. Add to that "some kind of a failure, and the idea that 'I deserve to die' can percolate up. That happened to me." Now an atheist, he is establishing Intrinsic Dignity, a nonprofit offering school boards model policies he hopes can block GNC access to schools.

"We realize that the message [of sin and redemption] can be somewhat overwhelming," says GNC's Harrison, who appears genuinely pained by Mr. Cernyar's story. "But at the same time we present the other side of it: God loves you ... you can lean on Him in times of trouble." If a kid is being hard on himself, he adds, "we go, 'No, no. Just ask for forgiveness and then trust' " in God's love and forgiveness.

Moises Esteves, CEF vice president for USA Ministries, says that GNC teachers model loving acceptance toward believers and nonbelievers alike ? and spending time with Harrison, it is easy to believe he does. But, Mr. Esteves says, "we are born-again believers" and "the message itself ? not the person, but the message ? begins to be divisive. Do I change it, make it palatable to everybody and in a sense distance myself from the teaching of the Scriptures? My answer to that is no."

This raises the issue of the appropriateness of holding evangelistic programs in elementary schools. Katherine Stewart, author of "The Good News Club: The Christian Right's Stealth Assault on America's Children," maintains that GNC uses "the public school's cloak of authority. Young children can't make a distinction between what happens in their school and what's sponsored by their school. I have a 6-year-old. He believes in the tooth fairy. He'll do anything for a cupcake."

Esteves sees this as a ploy to silence his religious point of view. Manipulating a confession of faith would be counterproductive, he argues, and children can only attend with parental consent: "When they read the name of the organization it does not take a rocket scientist to see we are about evangelizing children."

Disagreement on this extends to other religious groups. Leaders in Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) and Youth Alive say they are thinking of extending their activities to elementary schools. The Jewish Student Union, an Orthodox organization, will not, says director Micah Greenland. "In younger years," he says "children don't have the independence to make decisions for themselves. It is a scary time to try to influence their thinking."

The only thing supporters and critics of the GNC seem to agree on is whether parents should visit the club. Esteves invites them in; Ms. Stewart urges them to attend.

Source: http://rss.csmonitor.com/~r/feeds/csm/~3/hWdjTYJtJjk/School-prayer-After-school-Good-News-Club-is-Sunday-school-on-steroids

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Mandela's wife thanks world for 'love, generosity'

JOHANNESBURG (AP) ? In tweets, songs, telephone calls, cards and more, messages of love have come from across South Africa and the world for 94-year-old Nelson Mandela, giving the family comfort and hope as he remains hospitalized in serious condition with a lung infection, his wife said Monday.

As the anti-apartheid hero spent a 10th day in the hospital, Graca Machel expressed the family's gratitude for the support "from South Africans, Africans across the continent, and thousands more from across the world ... to lighten the burden of anxiety; bringing us love, comfort and hope. "

Machel has already experienced the loss of a husband. Mozambican President Samora Machel, her first husband, died in a plane crash in 1986. Machel and Mandela married in 1998, marking Mandela's third marriage and her second.

People have carried "get well soon" placards outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria where Mandela is being treated. They have prayed for him in churches across this nation of roughly 50 million. Schoolchildren have come to his home in Johannesburg to sing. Even though he was not there to hear them, the voices gave solace to his family.

"The messages have come by letter, by SMS, by phone, by Twitter, by Facebook, by email, cards, flowers and the human voice, in particular the voices of children in schools or singing outside our home," Machel said in a statement. "We have felt the closeness of the world and the deepest meaning of strength and peace."

President Jacob Zuma said Sunday that Mandela remains in serious condition but that his doctors are seeing sustained improvements. Zuma said Mandela is engaging with family during visits.

The leader of South Africa's anti-apartheid movement, Mandela spent 27 years in prison during white racist rule. He is vulnerable to respiratory problems since contracting tuberculosis during his long imprisonment. The bulk of that period was spent on Robben Island off the coast of Cape Town where Mandela and other prisoners toiled in a dusty stone quarry.

He was freed in 1990 and became South Africa's first black president in 1994.

The Nobel Peace Prize laureate divorced his second wife, Winnie, in 1996. However in recent years she has joined him and Machel at family events. Winnie Madikizela-Mandela has been a frequent visitor to Mandela during his latest hospitalization.

This marks Mandela's fourth hospital stay since December.

Mandela "once said: 'What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made in the lives of others,'" Machel said. "I have thought of his words on each occasion the world stood with him, making a difference to him, in his healing."

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/mandelas-wife-thanks-world-love-generosity-081634810.html

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