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American disc jockey “DJ AM” dies at 36 of suspected drug overdose

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The American celebrity disc jockey Adam “DJ AM” Goldstein has been found dead in his apartment in Manhattan, New York. The cause of death is suspected to be a drug overdose. Goldstein was found dead by paramedics at 5:20 pm. Drug paraphernalia was found at his apartment, but the star had claimed to be clean for years after an addiction to crack cocaine.

Goldstein was a disc jockey at some of Hollywood’s most exclusive clubs and parties. He became a celebrity in his own right after relationships with actress Mandy Moore and the daughter of Lionel Richie, Nicole.

The disc jockey escaped death in September 2008 after he was involved in a plane crash that killed four people. Former drummer for rock band Blink-182, Travis Barker was also injured in the plane crash.

Several members of the Hollywood community released statements about Goldstein’s death. Television host Maria Menounos said “So horrible. In shock” and blogger Perez Hilton wrote on his Twitter page saying “He survived a deadly plane crash and now THIS, I can’t stop crying”.

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G8 Summit debates Middle-east crisis, WTO trade talks

Monday, July 17, 2006

The leaders of the Group of Eight (G8) nations met over the weekend in St. Petersburg in Russia for the 32nd G8 Summit, held under Russia’s presidency, to discuss the ongoing Israel-Lebanon crisis, the stalled world trade talks and other issues. They also met with other world leaders, the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and World Trade Organisation chief Pascal Lamy.

Contents

  • 1 Israel-Lebanon crisis
    • 1.1 G8 Statement on the crisis
    • 1.2 Summit leaders express differing opinions
    • 1.3 Call for UN action
    • 1.4 Reactions from the Middle-east
  • 2 WTO Trade talks
  • 3 Assistance to Africa and other issues
  • 4 External links
  • 5 Related news
  • 6 Sources
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US unemployment rate reaches 9.8%

Friday, October 2, 2009

Companies in the United States are shedding more jobs, pushing the country’s unemployment rate to a 26-year high of 9.8%.

The US Labor Department said on Friday that employers cut 263,000 jobs in September, with companies in the service industries — including banks, restaurants and retailers — hit especially hard. This is the 21st consecutive month of job losses in the country.

The United States has now lost 7.2 million jobs since the recession officially began in December 2007. The new data has sparked fears that unemployment could threaten an economic recovery. Top US officials have warned that any recovery would be slow and uneven, and some have predicted the unemployment rate will top 10% before the situation improves.

“Continued household deleveraging and rising unemployment may weigh more on consumption than forecast, and accelerating corporate and commercial property defaults could slow the improvement in financial conditions,” read a report by the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook, predicting that unemployment will average 10.1% by next year and not go back down to five percent until 2014.

Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Economy.com, said that “it’s a very fragile and tentative recovery. Policy makers need to do more.”

“The number came in weaker than expected. We saw a lot of artificial involvement by the government to prop up the markets, and now that that is starting to end, the private sector isn’t yet showing signs of life,” said Kevin Caron, a market strategist for Stifel, Nicolaus & Co.

Also on Thursday, the US Commerce Department said factory orders fell for the first time in five months, dropping eight-tenths of a percent in August. Orders for durable goods — items intended to last several years (including everything from appliances to airliners) — fell 2.6%, the largest drop since January of this year.

The US government has been spending billions of dollars — part of a $787 billion stimulus package — to help spark economic growth. There have been some signs the economy is improving.

The Commerce Department said on Thursday that spending on home construction jumped in August for its biggest increase in 16 years. A real estate trade group, the National Association of Realtors, said pending sales of previously owned homes rose more than 12 percent in August, compared to August 2008.

A separate Commerce Department report said that consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of US economic activity, rose at its fastest pace in nearly eight years, jumping 1.3 percent in August.

Other reports have provided cause for concern. A banking industry trade group said Thursday the number of US consumers making late payments, or failing to make payments, on loans and credit cards is on the rise. A survey by a business group, the Institute for Supply Management, Thursday showed US manufacturing grew in September, but at a slower pace than in August when manufacturing increased for the first time in a year and a half.

Stock markets reacted negatively to the reports. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 41 points in early trading, reaching a level of 9467. This follows a drop of 203 points on Thursday, its largest loss in a single day since July. The London FTSE index fell 55 points, or 1.1%, to reach 4993 points by 15.00 local time.

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John Constable painting location mystery solved after 195 years

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The mystery of the location of a viewpoint used by English painter John Constable has been solved, after nearly 200 years. The Stour Valley and Dedham Church was painted in Suffolk, England, between 1814 and 1815, but changes to the landscape meant that the spot he chose was not known, despite the best efforts of historians and art experts.

Now the puzzle has been answered. Martin Atkinson, who works for the National Trust as property manager for East Suffolk, used clues from the painting and looked at old maps to track down the viewpoint. Trees had grown, a hedgerow had been planted and boundaries had moved or disappeared, but Atkinson eventually worked out where Constable had stood. He said, “When I discovered that I had worked out the location where Constable painted this particular masterpiece, I couldn’t believe it. All the pieces of the jigsaw finally fitted together.”

Atkinson used an 1817 map of East Bergholt, where Constable grew up, as a reference point, but found that the view would have changed not long after the painting was completed. “The foreground didn’t fit at all, it was quite unusual as we know Constable painted it in the open air so he would have been standing in the scene. The hedgerow in his work no longer exists and there’s another hedgerow that runs across the scene today which wasn’t there. When you stand on the road on which he would have stood, and use the oak tree as a reference point, you see the same view. It’s great to see where an old master stood – and be inspired by the same view,” he said.

Suffolk, where Constable painted many of his finest paintings, is often called “Constable country”. Most, but not all, of the locations that Constable depicted are known. The picture is now housed in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.

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Kara Tointon and Artem Chigvintsev win UK Strictly Come Dancing

Monday, December 20, 2010

British actress Kara Tointon and her Russian dance partner Artem Chigvintsev have become the winners of the latest series of the BBC Television programme Strictly Come Dancing. The pair won the dancing show on Saturday, leaving British television presenter Matt Baker and his Kazakhstani dance partner Aliona Vilani in second place.

It’s just the most special thing that I’ve ever achieved.

Bookmakers had considered this dancing duo to be the most likely to win the series. Meanwhile, Australian actress Pamela Stephenson finished in third place along with her British dance partner, James Jordan. It was ultimately a public vote that determined the results.

Upon winning, Tointon proclaimed: “It’s just the most special thing that I’ve ever achieved.” In reference to Chigvintsev, she exclaimed: “I want to thank this man, he’s been absolutely wonderful.” Talking about the experience, she commented: “I’ve met the most fantastic friends in my life and this has been the most special experience for me.” Chigvintsev then declared to Tointon: “You’re amazing.” Baker described the dancing pair as “worthy winners, without any doubt”, saying: “If I was at home I’d be voting for you, too.”

Earlier in the final programme, Tointon and Chigvintsev had danced to the tune of Cry Me a River; the dance received the acclaim of the judges. “I would kill to be able to dance like that, I thought it was amazing,” Craig Revel Horwood exclaimed. Alesha Dixon commented: “I’m quite sad that that is the last dance we are going to see you do”. In reference to the pair, she added: “Together you are first class.” Bruno Tonioli remarked: “You danced to a level that we hardly ever see here. Whatever happens, this was incredible.”

Bruno Tonioli described Matt Baker as “very dashing and elegant”. Len Goodman believed that he was “an excellent ballroom dancer”. At one point, Palema Stephenson received a perfect score of 40 from the four judges for her Viennese Waltz. Tonioli branded the dance as “simply brilliant”. Revel Horwood used the word “remarkable” to describe that performance.

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California’s SB 1 Bill Originators’ and Supporters Turn Against Bill

Sunday, September 4, 2005

Changes to California’s SB 1 Bill have forced many of the bill’s strongest supporters, including Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, to oppose it. Governor Schwarzenegger is now expected to veto the bill.

The bill sought to provide incentives for businesses and individuals to install rooftop solar panels, in a manner similar to existing programs in Washington and Oregon. Under pressure from the electrician’s union, the bill was amended to require that installation be done by licensed electricians and that “prevailing wages” be paid for all commercial solar work done in the state.

Existing solar contractors were originally among the bill’s strongest supporters but now oppose it due to the changes. This comes despite the fact that they would be, under a grandfather clause, granted an exception to the new requirements for an electrician’s license. Future solar specialists would be required to also be licensed electricians.

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Historic gym the site of Benet Academy, Illinois victory over Oswego

Monday, January 18, 2010

Benet Academy Redwings 40 34 Oswego Panthers

The Benet Academy Redwings boys basketball team defeated the Oswego High School Panthers 40–34 Saturday night at Benet’s historic Alumni Gym. 

Located at Lisle, Illinois, United States, the gymnasium is home to Benet’s winning streak of 102 consecutive home games. The statewide record lasted from November 26, 1975 until January 24, 1987, when Naperville North High School defeated the Redwings 47–46. Benet also achieved 96 consecutive victories in the Western Suburban Catholic Conference at that time. 

The school continued to use the facility, colloquially referred to as the “Old Gym” or the “Small Gym”, until the end of the 1994 season, when a newer athletic center was built on campus. It wasn’t until the late 1990’s when then-coach Marty Gaughan decided to play one game per year in the Alumni Gym to remind the school of its history. “There is just an electricity, and you feel it when you are in there,” said Gaughan, who coached the team from the 1989–1990 season to the 2007–2008 season. 

This tradition continued until the 2006–2007 season, when the Redwings played against long-time rival St. Francis High School. Renovations prevented the gym from being used for athletic events over the past two seasons. This game was Benet coach Gene Heidkamp’s first opportunity to coach in the older gym. “So much history and winning has taken place there, which makes it so special. It is something the entire school community is excited about,” said Heidkamp. 

Saturday’s game was played at the Alumni Gym at the request of Oswego assistant coach Jim Bagley. He wanted his son, senior forward Chris Bagley, to experience the same atmosphere he had as he played for Benet in the 1978–1979 season. Greg Kwiatkowski was also Jim Bagley’s teammate in Benet, and his son, Joe Kwiatkowski, was in the Panthers’ starting lineup as well. “Two of us who played at Benet together and now our son’s play on [Oswego] together and for them to have a chance to play where we played is going to be a great night and great experience,” said the senior Bagley. 

Alumni Gym apparently still had its charm in the second half for the Redwings, whose 15–17 score at halftime worsened into an 11-point deficit in the third quarter. Benet fell behind with a score of 21–29 at the start of the fourth quarter. From that point, the Redwings’ defense began to kick in. Oswego could make only 2 of its 13 field goals in the third quarter. Benet’s offense also gained momentum as center Frank Kaminsky scored all of his 9 points in the fourth quarter. A shot by senior Mike Runger brought the score to 31–31, and two consecutive driving layups by David Sobolewski gave Benet the lead that would last for the rest of the game. 

“We hit a dry spell there, but let’s give credit where credit is due. Defense wins games and they are the best defensive team we’ve faced all year,” said Oswego coach Kevin Schnable.

Benet’s Matt Parisi led his team with 15 points, and Sobolewski scored 12. Oswego’s Andrew Ziemnik also scored 12. 

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Grandmother of Barack Obama dies at 86

Monday, November 3, 2008

Madelyn Dunham, the maternal grandmother of United States 2008 presidential candidate Barack Obama, has died of cancer at 86, just one day before the election.

Dunham, who was born in Peru, Kansas in 1922, helped to raise Obama from the age of 10. She lived in Honolulu, Hawaii for most of her life, where she died peacefully in her apartment shortly before midnight local time.

She was the cornerstone of our family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility.

“It is with great sadness that we announce that our grandmother, Madelyn Dunham, has died peacefully after a battle with cancer. She was the cornerstone of our family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility,” said Obama and his sister Maya Soetoro-Ng in a joint statement to the press.

During his acceptance speech for Democratic presidential nominee he noted her with the words, “She’s the one who put off buying a new car or a new dress for herself so that I could have a better life… She poured everything she had into me.”

Obama took time out from his presidential campaign in October to visit her at her bedside a week before she died.

Obama’s opponent John McCain also issued a statement saying his “thoughts and prayers go out” to Obama and his family.

“We offer our deepest condolences to Barack Obama and his family as they grieve the loss of their beloved grandmother. Our thoughts and prayers go out to them as they remember and celebrate the life of someone who had such a profound impact in their lives,” said McCain in a statement to the press.

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Former Trump advisor, Paul Manafort, receives second sentence in U.S. Federal Court

Friday, March 15, 2019

A former advisor for U.S. President Donald Trump was sentenced in U.S. Federal Court on Wednesday. Paul Manafort was sentenced by Judge Amy Berman Jackson to 73 months in federal prison and to also pay financial restitution to the Internal Revenue Service in the amount of US$6.16 million.

Manafort’s charges involved unregistered foreign lobbying and witness tampering. Judge Jackson clarified in the proceedings that her sentencing decisions were not connected to or impacted by the sentence Manafort received in a separate case for which Manafort was sentenced last week. However, as part of her admonition, Judge Jackson stated, “Saying I’m sorry I got caught is not an inspiring plea for leniency.”

In last week’s action, another federal judge sentenced Manafort to a 47 month prison term. After his conviction in that case last summer, Manafort agreed to help with Robert Mueller’s investigation. However, some months later, the judge in that case determined Manafort had lied and violated that deal. That conviction was related to Manafort’s lobbying business.

In 2018, while preparing for his first trial, Manafort was kept in solitary confinement at least 23 hours per day. In that trial, he faced 18 counts of fraud pertaining to his financial reporting for his pay while working on a foreign campaign in Ukraine.

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Militants bomb Gaziantep, Turkey police headquarters

Monday, May 2, 2016

A car bomb detonated at police headquarters in Gaziantep, Turkey yesterday morning killed two police officers and injured more than twenty other people. The governor’s office said nineteen of the injured were police officers. Police said they suspect an alleged Daesh (ISIL) militant of responsibility for the attack.

Turkish media reported two police officers, Yusuf Evrin and Serdar ?akir, spotted the bomb in the vehicle as the driver approached the building. The officers opened fire on the driver before the bomb exploded.

This follows another suicide bombing in Istanbul four days earlier that wounded several people, and three other militant attacks this year in Turkish cities populated with high numbers of tourists. Daesh have not claimed responsibility for any of these attacks.

Turkish police claim to have found evidence linking the suspect to Daesh and conducted a raid on his home. They took the suspect’s father in for questioning and DNA testing, in an attempt to confirm the bomber’s identity.

The US-led coalition against Daesh, of which Turkey is a member, carried out airstrikes in Syria last Thursday. Gaziantep is near the Syrian border and a city official estimated to news website The Conversation the area harbors as many as 400,000 Syrian refugees. Suspected Daesh militants amongst them have recently been subjected to police raids.

Foreign travel advisories are warning tourists of an increased threat of terrorist attacks in Turkey.

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