Nov 13 2010

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 Myanmar’s Suu Kyi ‘on cusp of freedom’


Fri Nov 12, 11:48 am ET

YANGON (AFP) – Myanmar’s democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi is on the verge of being freed from house arrest, officials in the military-ruled country said on Friday as hundreds of her supporters gathered in anticipation.

Security was stepped up in Yangon, where Suu Kyi remained confined to her crumbling lakeside mansion, with police vehicles patrolling the city.

The Nobel Peace Prize winner, locked up for most of the past two decades, is still seen as the biggest threat to the junta, but her freedom appears to be a price it is willing to pay to deflect criticism of recent elections.

2 Iraq power-sharing deal frayed as Maliki named PM

by Prashant Rao, AFP

1 hr 34 mins ago

BAGHDAD (AFP) – A power-sharing pact that saw Nuri al-Maliki named to a second term as Iraq’s premier looked frayed on Friday, as claims the deal was broken hours after being sealed caused disarray in parliament.

A dramatic walk-out by a group of 60 MPs from the Sunni-backed bloc of former premier Iyad Allawi underscored the fragility of the deal, which seeks to finally end the country’s political impasse eight months after elections.

As part of the accord, brokered during three days of intense talks, President Jalal Talabani, re-elected by MPs, named Maliki as prime minister on Thursday evening.

3 China-US spat hobbles G20 push on world economy

by Jitendra Joshi, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 12:26 pm ET

SEOUL (AFP) – G20 leaders vowed on Friday to avoid currency manipulation and trade protectionism, but bad blood between China and the United States blocked deeper progress in rebalancing the skewed global economy.

After a stormy two-day summit, the leaders of the world’s biggest rich and emerging economies agreed in a declaration to craft “indicative guidelines” to reorient imbalanced trade between surplus and deficit nations.

Due to Chinese-led resistance to binding trade targets, that was far less ambitious than sought by the United States as the world’s richest power nurses a hangover from its worst recession since the 1930s.

4 Medvedev says he knew about double agent

by Anna Smolchenko, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 12:19 pm ET

SEOUL (AFP) – President Dmitry Medvedev confirmed Friday that a Moscow double agent helped Washington crack a major Russian spy ring that sparked the worst espionage row between the two countries since the Cold War.

Medvedev conceded that Russia would have to draw lessons from the fiasco but dismissed talk that it was time to start firing officials over the case — an increasingly popular sentiment in disgruntled Moscow.

“To me, what Kommersant said was not news. I knew about it the day it happened, with all its attributes and accessories,” Medvedev said at the G20 summit in South Korea’s capital when asked about the respected daily’s report.

5 Russia’s quarterly growth slows sharply due to drought

by Dmitry Zaks, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 1:03 pm ET

MOSCOW (AFP) – Russia met analysts’ expectations on Friday as it reported a 2.7 percent annual third-quarter growth rate hampered by a record drought that hurt both output and consumer demand.

The Federal State Statistics Service said in a preliminary report that growth had slowed from the 5.2-percent recorded on an annual basis in the second quarter of 2010.

Russia has penciled in a 4.0-percent figure for the year.

6 Formula One driver Hamilton happy with his pace

by Tim Collings, AFP

2 hrs 33 mins ago

ABU DHABI (AFP) – Briton Lewis Hamilton said he felt delighted with his pace and form as he topped the times ahead of his three rival title contenders in Friday’s practice for Sunday’s showdown Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The 25-year-old Englishman needs to win Sunday’s 55-lap race at the Yas Marina circuit and hope current leader Fernando Alonso of Spain fails to score if he has any chance of winning a second title.

The 2008 champion also needs the two Red Bull drivers to fail to make impressions in the race if he is to sweep to glory in unexpected fashion.

7 Red Bull F1 bosses want ‘free for all’ finale


Fri Nov 12, 9:32 am ET

ABU DHABI (AFP) – Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has made clear that his team’s warring world title contenders will not only be free from team orders in Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, but will be encouraged to treat it as a “free for all” as they battle for the championship.

Horner, the team principal and manager, who is strictly controlled by instructions from the team’s owner Dietrich Mateschitz, said on Friday that both Australian Mark Webber and German Sebastian Vettel will be “free to race as aggressively as they want” in Sunday’s season finale.

The pair are in a fight for the title with current leader, Spaniard Fernando Alonso, of Ferrari and Briton Lewis Hamilton of McLaren, who has only a slim and distant hope of success. Alonso leads Webber by eight points and Vettel by 15. Hamilton is 24 points adrift.

8 Latest Harry Potter whets appetite for finale

by Loic Vennin, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 3:34 am ET

LONDON (AFP) – Critics mostly applauded the latest “dark and despairing” Harry Potter film just hours after its young stars were contemplating their future at its world premiere in London.

“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One” is the first of two movies based on the seventh and final book by J. K. Rowling, and its premiere was an emotional event for its stars who have literally grown up on set.

Although early reviews praise the film’s shift to the dark side, most are left feeling that it is merely an appetiser for the series finale next July.

9 ‘Breakthrough’ ceremony opens Asian Games

by Peter Stebbings, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 12:47 pm ET

GUANGZHOU, China (AFP) – The 16th Asian Games officially opened on Friday in the southern Chinese metropolis of Guangzhou with a “breakthrough” ceremony that organisers hope will linger long in the memory.

In a departure from the standard openings, Guangzhou, China’s third-biggest city, held the traditional curtain raiser on a boat-shaped island in the middle of the Pearl River instead of in a stadium.

The extravaganza ignited a huge security sweep to protect national leaders including Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, with forces mounting a land, sea and air operation that brought parts of the city of over 10 million to a standstill.

10 EU heavyweights move to calm bond markets

by Judith Evans, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 8:56 am ET

SEOUL (AFP) – EU heavyweights Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Spain issued a joint declaration Friday insisting that bond market jitters over a future bailout fund were misplaced, as Ireland suffers a debt crisis.

“Any new (bailout) mechanism would only come into effect after mid-2013 with no impact whatsoever on the current arrangements,” the five countries’ finance ministers said in the declaration, issued at a G20 summit in Seoul.

EU leaders agreed last month to design a permanent plan of aid and penalties for eurozone countries facing fiscal ruin, to replace a current crisis response fund when it expires in 2013.

11 McIntosh boosts New Zealand in India cricket Test

by Abhaya Srivastava, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 8:05 am ET

HYDERABAD, India (AFP) – Opener Tim McIntosh struck a fine 102 to steer New Zealand to 258-4 on the first day of the second Test against India on Friday.

The left-hander hit 10 fours and a six during his nearly seven-hour innings before being bowled by Zaheer Khan in the penultimate over of the day at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium, hosting its first Test.

McIntosh added 147 runs with Martin Guptill (85) for the second wicket and 55 for the third with Ross Taylor (24) to steady the New Zealand boat after the early dismissal of opener Brendon McCullum.

12 Bomb stokes fears Islamists expanding in Pakistan

by Hasan Mansoor, AFP

Fri Nov 12, 7:56 am ET

KARACHI (AFP) – Pakistan on Friday accused Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked bombers of attacking police in Karachi, stoking fears that Islamist networks are expanding their fight in the country’s economic capital.

Gunmen rode up to the Crime Investigations Department (CID), used to detain terror suspects, on Thursday evening, exchanged fire with police and detonated a truck packed with explosives.

The attack killed up to 18 people and damaged the building in Karachi’s most fortified downtown area, near government buildings, the US Consulate, five-star hotels frequented by Westerners and high-rise company offices.

13 Ireland in aid talks with EU, rescue likely: sources

By Jan Strupczewski and Padraic Halpin, Reuters

1 hr 51 mins ago

BRUSSELS/DUBLIN (Reuters) – Ireland is in talks to receive emergency funding from the European Union and is likely to become the second euro zone country after Greece to obtain an international rescue, official sources said on Friday.

Irish borrowing costs have shot to record highs this week because of concern about the country’s ability to reduce a public debt burden swollen by bank bailouts, and worries that private bond holders could be forced to shoulder part of the costs of any bailout by taking “haircuts” on their holdings.

Government officials in Dublin have denied repeatedly that they plan to tap EU funds, and an Irish finance ministry spokesman said after the Reuters story was published that there were “no talks on an application for emergency funding from the European Union.”

14 G20 closes ranks but skims over toughest tasks

By Alex Richardson and David Ljunggren, Reuters

1 hr 14 mins ago

SEOUL (Reuters) – G20 leaders closed ranks on Friday and agreed to a watered-down commitment to watch out for dangerous imbalances, yet offered investors little proof the world was any safer from economic catastrophe.

After an acrimonious start, developed and emerging nations agreed at a summit in Seoul to set vague “indicative guidelines” for measuring imbalances between their multi-speed economies. But they called a timeout to let tempers cool and left the details to be discussed in the first half of 2011.

European leaders broke away for their own mini gathering in the middle of the summit to discuss a deepening credit crisis in Ireland. Euro zone sources said Ireland is in talks to receive emergency funding from the European Union, in an apparent deja-vu of Greece six months ago.

15 Obama, Republicans set for "lame-duck" tax test

By Thomas Ferraro, Retuers

Fri Nov 12, 11:33 am ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A wrangle over extending tax cuts for millions of Americans will be the first major test of whether President Barack Obama and resurgent Republicans can work together to fix the U.S. economy.

In the wake of the November 2 election in which Republicans won control in the House of Representatives, Obama and the Republicans must thrash out a deal or tax rates for everyone will rise in January.

The debate over taxes is likely to dominate the “lame-duck” session in Congress starting on Monday, so called because the shift in power brought by last week’s elections is not reflected until the new members take up their seats in January.

16 Report cautions Obama on high cost of Afghan war

By David Alexander, Reuters

2 hrs 38 mins ago

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – An independent task force cautioned President Barack Obama on Friday about the high cost of the Afghanistan war and said he should consider a narrow military mission if his December review finds the current strategy is not working.

The 25-member task force, led by former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and former national security adviser Samuel Berger, said it saw “hopeful signs” in Afghanistan, such as improved training of security forces, but other trends were less encouraging.

“The cloudy picture and high costs raise the question of whether the United States should now downsize its ambitions and reduce its military presence in Afghanistan,” the task force said in a 98-page report.

17 GM has orders for $60 billion in stock: sources

By Clare Baldwin and Soyoung Kim, Reuters

25 mins ago

NEW YORK (Reuters) – General Motors Co’s landmark initial public offering has already garnered $60 billion in orders, six times the amount it had planned to raise, in a sign of healthy investor interest for the massive automaker that was in desperate straits just over a year ago.

The robust demand for shares in GM, the American industrial icon which filed for bankruptcy in June 2009, underscores growing investor confidence that the auto industry has come through the punishing downturn of the past two years with sharply lower costs and higher profit potential.

The landmark IPO will likely price around the top end of the $26 to $29 per share range and the full overallotment option — additional shares underwriters can sell to help stabilize the stock after it begins trading — will likely be exercised, three people familiar with the matter said.

18 Special Report: The two lives of Angela Merkel

By Andreas Rinke and Stephen Brown, Reuters

Fri Nov 12, 6:59 am ET

BERLIN (Reuters) – German conservative party headquarters is rocking. To the heavy thud of AC/DC, hundreds of young party members throng the foyer of Konrad Adenauer House in Berlin waving posters and talking over the music.

Music over, they listen with rapt attention and regular applause to Germany’s most popular politician — approval rating a record 74 percent — speak about passion and leadership. With Germany taking on a more assured and outspoken role in Europe, its economy moving into what the economy minister has called an “XL recovery”, and no national elections to worry about for three years, there’s every reason for Angela Merkel’s government to bask in the glow of success.

Unfortunately for the German chancellor, neither she nor her Christian Democratic Party (CDU) is the object of the chants and adulation at this rally of young conservatives on a Saturday afternoon in October. Instead, the calls — “KT! KT! KT!” — refer to Merkel’s debonair 38-year-old defense minister from the CDU’s smaller, more conservative Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union (CSU). “KT” is Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg — or to give him his full dues, Karl Theodor Maria Nikolaus Johann Jacob Philipp Franz Joseph Sylvester, Baron von und zu Guttenberg. Pictures of Guttenberg and his wife Stephanie, the great-great-granddaughter of the “Iron Chancellor” Otto von Bismarck — architect of German unification in the 19th century — frequently decorate the covers of newspapers and magazines.

19 South Korea upbeat on resolving U.S. trade deal soon

By Jack Kim, Reuters

Fri Nov 12, 7:10 am ET

SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korean officials struck an upbeat note on Friday that discussions to iron out U.S. concerns about a free trade deal they signed three years ago would conclude soon despite missing a deadline set by their leaders.

But there was also concern that outstanding differences on the autos and beef trade that hampered progress on the deal could take months, if not another several years, to resolve.

“I can tell you … that the differences have been narrowed through the tireless discussion at various levels, and we are very hopeful of resuming talks and reaching a mutually agreeable resolution within the next few weeks,” South Korea’s ambassador to the United States, Han Duk-soo, told Reuters.

20 Private banks keep hiring as rich get richer

By Tommy Wilkes, Reuters

Fri Nov 12, 6:02 am ET

LONDON (Reuters) – Private banks will sharply expand headcount in coming years to capitalize on the growing number of wealthy individuals in Asia, dismissing concerns that aggressive hiring is out of sync with a tentative recovery in revenues.

Hiring sprees this year have taken some firms beyond their pre-crisis staffing levels, as banks believe growth in Asia, and robust revenues elsewhere, will support the expansion.

Citi for instance plans to add between 100 and 200 senior staff to its private bank over the next few years, Dena Brumpton, chief operating officer at its private bank, told Reuters.

21 Rumors swirl in Myanmar over Suu Kyi release

By Aung Hla Tun, Reuters

Fri Nov 12, 9:00 am ET

YANGON (Reuters) – Rumor and speculation about the imminent release of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi swept across Myanmar on Friday but there was no word from the country’s secretive military rulers about whether she would be freed.

Web boards and foreign news media went into overdrive amid a flurry of Rumors that the charismatic leader of Myanmar’s fight against dictatorship was set to walk free on Friday or when her latest period of house arrest term expires a day later.

Reports quoted government insiders, state officials and well-connected sources as saying the country’s reclusive leader, Senior General Than Shwe, had signed an order for her release.

22 G20 sees small window to seal WTO Doha deal in 2011

By Jonathan Lynn, Reuters

Fri Nov 12, 9:47 am ET

GENEVA (Reuters) – Leaders of the G20 rich and emerging economies called on Friday for intensified efforts to complete the long-running Doha round of global trade talks, saying next year offers a narrow window of opportunity.

The endorsement by the G20 summit of 2011 as a target date, even if not an explicit one, marks an optimistic return to the practice of summits setting deadlines for the Doha talks, launched nine years ago this Sunday.

Each one has been missed, starting with the original target of January 1, 2005. But this time may be different.

23 Ireland says surge in borrowing costs "very serious"

By Carmel Crimmins, Reuters

Thu Nov 11, 10:14 am ET

DUBLIN (Reuters) – Ireland warned on Thursday that a surge in its borrowing costs to record highs had become “very serious” and the EU said it was ready to act should the humbled former “Celtic Tiger” require a rescue from its euro partners.

European officials said they were monitoring developments in Ireland closely but denied for a second day running that Dublin was seeking financial aid, in an ominous echo of the rhetoric that preceded an EU/IMF bailout of Greece six months ago.

Unlike Greece, Ireland is fully funded through the middle of next year, meaning a liquidity crisis is not imminent.

24 G-20 refuses to back US push on China’s currency

By VIJAY JOSHI, Associated Press

1 hr 5 mins ago

SEOUL, South Korea – Leaders of 20 major economies on Friday refused to back a U.S. push to make China boost its currency’s value, keeping alive a dispute that raises fears of a global trade war amid criticism that cheap Chinese exports are costing American jobs.

A joint statement issued by the leaders including President Barack Obama and China’s Hu Jintao tried to recreate the unity that was evident when the Group of 20 rich and developing nations held its first summit two years ago during the global financial meltdown.

But deep divisions, especially over the U.S.-China currency dispute, left G-20 officials negotiating all night to draft a watered-down statement for the leaders to endorse.

25 Murkowski camp says she’s heading for re-election

By BECKY BOHRER, Associated Press

1 hr 7 mins ago

JUNEAU, Alaska – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s campaign declared she’s headed for re-election, saying rival Joe Miller’s unverified voter fraud claims and frivolous challenges of write-in ballots are pointing to his desperation.

Murkowski, whose hopes for another term hinge on her winning a write-in effort, undisputedly held 89.8 percent of that vote with 45,132 ballots counted so far. That’s enough for her campaign to feel she’s poised to win, in spite of thousands of outstanding ballots yet to be uncounted and a pending legal case.

Another 9.5 percent of write-in ballots were challenged, though most of those were counted toward Murkowski’s tally – coming on objections over misspellings or penmanship.

26 Vigil held for Myanmar pro-democracy leader

Associated Press

1 hr 8 mins ago

YANGON, Myanmar – Supporters of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi held a vigil on the eve of Saturday’s expiration of her house arrest order, hoping to see the Nobel Peace Prize laureate taste freedom for the first time in seven years.

While scores of people who gathered near her home were disappointed that she was not given an early release Friday night, colleagues said an order to set her free had already been signed by Myanmar’s ruling generals. Some 200 people has come earlier when rumors of her impending release were at their height.

Adding to the expectant atmosphere was a sharply stepped-up security presence in Yangon: truckloads of riot police, cruising and parked – a familiar sight to city residents during times of political tension.

27 AP Exclusive: Suspect turns case against priest


51 mins ago

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Will Lynch is looking for justice in an unusual way. Charged with savagely beating the priest he says molested him as a child, he plans to try to use his trial to publicly shame the Rev. Jerold Lindner in court and call attention to clergy abuse.

Law experts say he faces an uphill battle. But priest abuse victims are cheering him on and offering to donate to his defense fund. Several dozen supporters marched and waved signs Friday outside the Northern California courthouse where he was arraigned on an assault charge.

“Somebody needs to be a face for this abuse and I’m prepared to put myself on the line,” Lynch told The Associated Press in the first interview since his arrest last month. “There’s nothing they can take from me that they haven’t already taken.”

28 Pot o’ Gold: Family’s old vase fetches $83 million

By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press

1 hr 10 mins ago

LONDON – A Chinese vase that sat, little-noticed, in a suburban London home has become one of the most expensive artworks ever sold, evidence that China’s sizzling art market shows no signs of cooling down.

The 18th-century porcelain vase, sold by a family clearing out a deceased relative’s house, went to a Chinese buyer for 51.6 million pounds ($83 million) – more than 40 times the pre-sale estimate and a record for a Chinese work of art.

For Peter Bainbridge, a small independent auctioneer who specializes in house clearance sales, Thursday’s result was an extremely pleasant shock.

29 Obama sees progress in measured steps, no home run

By BEN FELLER, AP White House Correspondent

31 mins ago

YOKOHAMA, Japan – A defensive President Barack Obama claimed progress Friday in a round of global economic talks that exposed discord over U.S. policy and doubts about American influence. Not every summit can be a game-changer, he said.

“Instead of hitting home runs, sometimes we’re going to hit singles,” the president said. “But they’re really important singles.”

Obama pointed to a consensus by 20 powerhouse and emerging economies on plans for a balanced economy, with the makings of a system to track and prevent unhealthy trade deficits and surpluses, an initiative that lacks enforcement.

30 Doctors brace for possible big Medicare pay cuts


1 hr 16 mins ago

WASHINGTON – Breast cancer surgeon Kathryn Wagner has posted a warning in her waiting room about a different sort of risk to patients’ health: She’ll stop taking new Medicare cases if Congress allows looming cuts in doctors’ pay to go through.

The scheduled cuts – the result of a failed system set up years ago to control costs – have raised alarms that real damage to Medicare could result if the lame-duck Congress winds up in a partisan standoff and fails to act by Dec. 1. That’s when an initial 23 percent reduction would hit.

Neither Democrats nor newly empowered Republicans want the sudden cuts, but there’s no consensus on how to stave them off. The debate over high deficits complicates matters, since every penny going to make doctors whole will probably have to come from cuts elsewhere. A reprieve of a few months may be the likeliest outcome. That may not reassure doctors.

31 Obama lauds ‘inclusive’ Iraq govt amid frictions

By BUSHRA JUHI, Associated Press

Fri Nov 12, 12:46 pm ET

BAGHDAD – President Barack Obama praised Iraqi moves to form an “inclusive” government on Friday, but the two-day-old deal was already looking fragile after Sunni lawmakers walked out of parliament, clouding the possibilities for working with Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

Members of the Sunni-backed Iraqiya bloc have accused al-Maliki’s Shiite coalition of breaking promises under the deal, which aimed to overcome an eight-month deadlock and allow the creation of a new Iraqi government.

Jaber al-Jaberi, an Iraqiya lawmaker from the Sunni stronghold of Ramadi, said members of the bloc were meeting to decide whether to boycott the next session of parliament, which was scheduled for Saturday.

32 NFL, manufacturers agree there’s no perfect helmet

By HOWARD FENDRICH, AP Pro Football Writer

1 hr 12 mins ago

As Philadelphia Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson prepared to return last weekend from his second concussion in less than a year, he was given a special, new helmet. While he hoped to be better protected, the helmet’s maker certainly wouldn’t – and couldn’t – guarantee Jackson will be completely safe from brain injuries.

The truth is, no helmet can provide that sort of absolute protection in the NFL, where there’s an average of 1 1/2 to two concussions in each game.

In a series of interviews with The Associated Press, representatives of the NFL, its players’ union and the four equipment companies that make every helmet worn in the league all agreed there’s no football helmet – in production or on drawing boards – that can eliminate concussions. And there might never be one.

33 Airbus says bearing box failed in Rolls engine

By JANE WARDELL, Associated Press

Fri Nov 12, 1:40 pm ET

LONDON – An Airbus executive said Friday that Rolls-Royce has identified a faulty bearing box as the cause of the oil leak problem implicated in the midair disintegration of an engine on one of the world’s largest airliners, an Australian newspaper reported.

Airbus Chief Operating Officer John Leahy told reporters in Sydney that Rolls-Royce had at some point fixed the bearing box on newer versions of the massive Trent 900 engine, a model designed for the massive A380 superjumbo. He said Rolls was now fixing it on older versions. The Herald Sun reported his comments on its website.

His comments did not address why Rolls-Royce had not fixed the bearing box in older versions of the engine.

34 Innocence Project: Overhaul death penalty laws

By MICHAEL GRACZYK, Associated Press

36 mins ago

HOUSTON – The execution of a Texas man whose plea for DNA testing was ignored shows procedures and laws covering capital punishment need to be changed, a leading anti-death penalty lawyer said Friday.

Innocence Project co-founder Barry Scheck said the execution of convicted murderer Claude Jones 10 years ago took place only because then-Gov. George W. Bush wasn’t told by his legal team that Jones’ lawyer was seeking DNA testing on a piece of hair used to convict him.

“I have great hopes that when President Bush reviews this case he will acknowledge what I think is obvious here, and that is that he was blindsided, he was misled, and he would have granted that DNA test to Claude Jones and everything would have been different for Claude Jones.”

35 Witness: Cop said looters ‘deserved to be shot’

By MICHAEL KUNZELMAN, Associated Press

29 mins ago

NEW ORLEANS – A former New Orleans police officer on trial for gunning down a man outside a strip mall in Hurricane Katrina’s aftermath said after the shooting that looters are “animals” who “deserved to be shot,” a fellow officer testified Friday.

The former officer, David Warren, is charged with fatally shooting 31-year-old Henry Glover before two other officers allegedly burned his body in a car. Prosecutors say Glover wasn’t armed and didn’t pose a threat, but Warren’s lawyers say he thought Glover was a looter reaching for a weapon when he shot him.

Alec Brown, a former officer who left the force in 2008, testified that he and Warren argued about looters while patrolling after the 2005 hurricane. Brown said he defended people taking food, while Warren said looters “were all animals and they deserved to be shot, and that they were all destroying the city.”

36 G-20 fallout: Trade barriers, tensions could rise

By PAUL WISEMAN, AP Economics Writer

37 mins ago

WASHINGTON – The world’s most important economies are going home to look after themselves. They left their summit without any meaningful agreement, finding it ever harder to cooperate and more likely to erect trade barriers to protect their own interests.

The Group of 20 meeting of leading rich and developing nations ended Friday in South Korea with no solutions to longstanding tensions over trade and currency, and with the cooperation of the 2008 financial crisis now a distant memory.

The U.S. couldn’t persuade other countries to pressure China to stop manipulating its currency or limit their own trade surpluses and deficits. The Americans faced charges of doing some currency manipulation of their own by pumping $600 billion into their economy.

37 Asian Games begin amid light, water and flames

By JOHN PYE, AP Sports Writer

Fri Nov 12, 1:53 pm ET

GUANGZHOU, China – China promised another spectacular opening, and it delivered.

A festival of fireworks and pageantry on the Pearl River on Friday marked the start of the Asian Games, two years after the dazzling start to the Beijing Olympics. Athletes were ferried on 45 boats to an island venue shaped like a ship’s bow for an extravaganza of light, water and flames.

More than 10,000 athletes from 45 countries or territories are competing in 42 sports in Guangzhou, a southern city that long served as China’s window to the world. The world’s second-biggest multisports event starts Saturday and ends Nov. 27.

38 Buick brings back Regal name

By ANN M. JOB, For The Associated Press

Fri Nov 12, 10:11 am ET

Buick’s reputation as a premium American brand takes a new turn with the new-for-2011 Regal midsize sedan.

The five-passenger car that wears the well-known Regal name this year is nothing like the old Regals. Gone are the six-cylinder engines, the wallowy ride and the senior citizen styling.

The 2011 Regal – the first Regal in U.S. showrooms since 2004 – is attractive and modern, powered by four-cylinder engines, and it rides and handles with composure not traditionally expected of a Buick.

39 AWOL soldier returns on Veterans Day

By KRISTIN M. HALL, Associated Press

Fri Nov 12, 8:16 am ET

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – AWOL soldier Jeff Hanks said he walked away from the Army in the middle of a deployment to Afghanistan because his problems with anxiety and stress from combat have been ignored. On Veterans Day, he returned to face the consequences.

The 30-year-old Army infantryman said he has suffered post-traumatic stress disorder since his 2008 tour in Iraq. He tried to seek treatment at Fort Campbell, Ky., last month during his mid-tour leave from Afghanistan. He said when his commanders failed to help and told him he would have to immediately go back, he instead went home to North Carolina.

The specialist could face less-than-honorable discharge or jail after turning himself in Thursday at Fort Campbell.

40 Transgender people find their voice at NC school

By MARTHA WAGGONER, Associated Press

Fri Nov 12, 7:00 am ET

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Nicole Hatch had spent six figures on her transition from a male to a female, including flying to Thailand for sexual reassignment surgery and spending at least $20,000 on facial hair removal.

But her voice still gave her away – callers would refer to her as “sir” when she answered the phone.

So Hatch came to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where speech pathologists teach transgender people how to speak like the people of the sex they’re becoming or have become.

41 Action, not talk: Deficit panel pushes Dems, GOP


Fri Nov 12, 2:17 am ET

WASHINGTON – The leaders of the deficit commission are baldly calling out the budget myths of both political parties, challenging lawmakers to engage in the “adult conversation” they say they want.

Their plan – mixing painful cuts to Social Security and Medicare with big tax increases – has no chance of enactment as written, certainly not as a whole. But the commission’s high profile will make it harder for Republicans and Democrats to simply keep reciting their tax and spending talking points without acknowledging the real sacrifices that progress against government deficits would demand.

It’s time for both conservatives and liberals to “put up or shut up,” says Jon Cowan, head of the centrist-Democratic group Third Way, which praised the bold new proposals and urged politicians to show courage. Republicans failed to produce their often-promised deficit reductions when they controlled the government, Cowan said, and Democrats refuse to acknowledge that entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare must be trimmed.

42 Obama spotlights failure of UN reform

By EDITH M. LEDERER, Associated Press

Thu Nov 11, 7:30 pm ET

UNITED NATIONS – President Barack Obama’s support for India’s bid for permanent membership on the U.N. Security Council put the spotlight on the failure of the United Nations to reform its most powerful body.

Despite widespread agreement that the Security Council needs to reflect the 21st century world – not the international power structure after World War II – the 192-member General Assembly has been unable for three decades to agree on a reform proposal.

The gridlock was evident during a debate Thursday: Supporters of three rival proposals to reform the council showed no signs of budging.

43 Champion elm Herbie to be sold in artful pieces

By DAVID SHARP, Associated Press

Thu Nov 11, 5:46 pm ET

YARMOUTH, Maine – In life, New England’s champion elm tree, nicknamed Herbie, stretched more than 100 feet skyward, towering over its neighbors and becoming a local landmark.

Nearly 10 months after being dismantled by chain saw, the majestic tree has been reincarnated by artisans into a variety of items including a stunning electric guitar. The custom guitar, along with baseball bats, upscale furniture and other keepsakes, will be auctioned off Saturday to benefit the Yarmouth tree trust.

“It’s mindboggling how much has been done with it,” said Jan Ames Santerre, senior planner with the Maine Forest Service, one of the sponsors in The Herbie Project.


  1. ek hornbeck
  2. TMC

    every time I’d start something I’d get interrupted with another phone call or crisis. I go so little done. I was just happy to be home by 4:30.

    The Medicare cuts will just shift patients to ER’s which is more expensive and mostly the least appropriate place to seek treatment for chronic illness. Congress needs to ask ER doctors and hospital administrators what happens to a patient that comes in with a chronic illness that can’t be treated in the ER and costs that it incurs. It is a terrible waste of resources and doesn’t do a damn thing to solve the problem for the patient

  3. Cold Blue Steel

    It looks like Prop 203 (medical marijuana) has finally taken the lead and might pass after all.

    The wingnuts must be going crazy.

    We passed similar measures twice before, only to have the legislature overturn the will of the voters. That might happen again with RWNJ majorities recently elected.

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