Monday, February 27, 2012

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Rutgers suicide trial: Do you really have the facts?

Jurors are now being chosen in the high-profile case of a Rutgers student who committed suicide after his roommate allegedly used a webcam to spy on his gay encounter. NBC's Kerry Sanders reports.

By Kerry Sanders, NBC News correspondent

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. ? Not far from Rutgers University, all eyes have turned to a second-floor courtroom where ?cyberbullying? has taken center stage.

The hateful ugliness of bullying that has gone from the schoolyard to the Internet would, at first glance, seem to be on trial.

Talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres was one of many who drew attention to the case on a national level when the story first broke. She took a serious break on her usually light-hearted show to discuss something close to her heart. She told the nation: Tyler Clementi ?was outed as being gay on the Internet and he killed himself."

That is true, but it?s also wrong.

The details of what you think you know about 18-year-old Clementi?s suicide and the facts are likely oceans apart.

Here are some of the alleged facts and what we actually?know.

Clementi, a Rutgers freshman, jumped to his death Sept. 22, 2010, from the George Washington Bridge after his college roommate, Dahrun Ravi, set up a webcam and peeked into his room while he was with another man.

All true.

But was it criminal?

?No,? Ravi says through his lawyer.

Clementi was outed by his roommate.

Not so clear.

While he had not made his sexual preferences public among those in his dormitory, Clementi had recently started to come out to his parents and brother. And he had revealed, to at least one man, the one he was with, that he was gay.

Nineteen-year-old Ravi and others watched as Clementi and an unnamed man shared intimate moments.

Witnesses will testify that is true.

Ravi?s secret webcam captured X-rated footage, and that it was then posted on the Internet for everyone to see.

Not true. If it were, prosecutors would have a pretty easy case. ?Jurors, I now call your attention to exhibit A. Clerk, please play the video!?

Jury pool shrinks in Rutgers webcam spying case

But that won?t happen, because there are no recordings. No videotapes. No digital files.

And that detail, say experts, is what makes this case a challenge.

In a multicount indictment, Ravi is charged with ?invasion of privacy? and ?bias intimidation.?

The defense will suggest the ?invasion of privacy? in this case was nothing more than a college prank, something akin to a scene from the movie ?American Pie.?

In June 2010 photo provided by the Ridgewood Patch, Tyler Clementi, left, hugs a fellow student during his 2010 graduation from Ridgewood High School in Ridgewood, N.J.

The ?bias intimidation? is legal language that means Ravi allegedly chose to do this to his roommate Clementi because Clementi was gay (therein lies the ?bias?).

An exhaustive analysis of the legal case is detailed in a recent New Yorker magazine article.

But for Clementi?s family, the tragedy is about more than courtroom drama.

No apology
In a wide-ranging interview with his parents, Jane Clementi told me that when she thinks about her son?s death, she wonders why she hasn?t heard an apology.?

?We haven't heard any regret or remorse or thought that he [Ravi] realized the consequences of his actions at all,? his mother said.

I asked her, ?And you'd like that??

?I don't know that I need that to move on.? But it certainly would help in the healing process.?

Ravi has not apologized.

He?s not talking, but legal experts say he may not have apologized simply because in court it would haunt him as an admission of guilt.

Or it may be that he believes he has done no wrong, and in his view, no one can say if the webcam influenced Clementi?s decision to jump to his death.

Clementi left no suicide note.

Joe Clementi, Tyler?s father, says that despite what others may want to believe, when he steps back and looks at his son?s death as unemotionally as a grieving father can, he wants to but cannot conclude there is a clear ?cause and effect.?

I asked his father why he thinks his son, as his life was crashing around him, didn?t reach out to ask him for help.

?I think he was trying to be a man, trying to grow up and face his own problems and situations,? Joe Clementi said. ?And I don't know why he didn't come to me and, you know, get me involved. That's one disappointment that I had.?

Not going to be easy
It?s clear, outside the courtroom, that some believe Ravi is guilty of causing Clementi?s death.

?Frankly I think Dahrun Ravi should be charged with more than just invasion of privacy, which is essentially calling him a ?Peeping Tom,?? said Steven Goldstein with Garden State Equality, a gay rights group. ?In my view, Dahrun Ravi should be charged with manslaughter.?

Tyler?s older brother James says he plans to be in court every day once a jury is chosen.

James is also gay. He wrote about his brother?s death in Out Magazine.

He and his brother had discussed their sexuality, but James says it was almost in passing.

As Ravi maintains his innocence and fights the charges, James Clementi is worried about some of the details of the case:

  • That what was seen on the webcam was two men kissing, and not an X-rated encounter.
  • That no recorded video exists and nothing was posted online.
  • That Clementi?s suicide won?t even be mentioned at trial.

?I'm not intimidated by his [Ravi?s] confidence, if he has it,? James Clementi said. ?I think that justice will be found in the courts.?

And then he paused for a moment and said, ?It's not going to be an easy process, of course.?



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Practical Tips For Planning Safaris - Travel - EzineMark

Going on safaris is not like any other vacation. You will be travelling to a distant location so you need to put a lot of thought in your planning stage to make sure that you have a hassle-free vacation. You have spent your hard-earned money to pay for your safaris so you have to make sure that everything is well planned before you hop on that plane.

After making your final booking for your safaris, it is best to ask for a detailed itinerary and other important information from your safari booking agency so you have a clear idea on what to expect once you get to your destination. One of the important things that you should ask about is the expected climate on your destination at the time of your safari. Knowing what type of climate to expect will be very useful in helping you decide which type of clothing to pack for your safaris. If you are going on safaris where the climate is expected to be cold then you should have the sense to pack thick clothing to protect you from the cold.

It does not make sense to pack clothes for both warm and cold climates because it is important to always pack lightly for safaris. You should only bring clothes that are appropriate for the climate in your destination.

When packing clothes for safaris, you should also make it a point to only pack articles of clothing that will be appropriate for the activities that you will be doing while on vacation. If you will be doing a lot of walking then you need comfortable clothes as well as sturdy hiking shoes. It is also best to ask from your safari booking agency regarding any formal events during safaris. Some safaris have formal dinners or dances in the evenings so you should know about these formal activities so you can pack the appropriate formal clothes.

It is also wise to pack a swimsuit because you never know when you might get a chance to go swimming at a beach or pool while on safari. A swim suit is a small piece of clothing so you can just tuck it into your suitcase.

One of the important things that you should never forget when preparing for safaris is your medications and vaccinations. Before you go on safaris, it is best to protect yourself by going to your family doctor for vaccinations. Your doctor will be able to advice you on the kind of vaccinations that you need to have before your Safari. You should also prepare your medications because you might have a problem finding a pharmacy that can dispense the same kind of medicine that you are currently taking.


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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Are We Women Responsible For Our Own Smaller Earnings? | Baby ...

As an advocate for financial literacy, some might be expecting me to discuss the stock market or share stories of riches gained in real estate or mining, but today?s subject is one that?s personal to me, and which will give you an insight into why five years ago, I started offering support to women who want financial independence.

I have touched on responsibility for women?s lower earning before, including discussing it passionately from my soap-box, but only now am I getting close to discussing the whole kit?n'caboodle. I recognise there?s still more for me to find out and comprehend ? I relish what?s yet to come, because the full picture will assist genuine equality for women in the area of income, as well as helping women generate their own riches, sans guilt and other internal turmoil.

I don?t describe myself as a women?s activist or a feminist, but I do feel us women have been victims too long: too many of us are poor; we take an unjustified portion of the financial hits; frequently make good deficiencies; and often find ourselves saying ?I can?t?. So ? it?s time for us to say enough excuses; enough denials; enough self-blame; and enough justifications!

Many of you reading this will know that management roles are still being given mainly to men, and that women are often in lower status jobs and earning less ? which adds up to retiring poor. Yes, women still do the majority of the family- and child-care, employers can be reluctant to offer flexible working options and discrimination still exists. However, we can take control in certain areas: getting better at negotiating, being more assertive, and feeling confident enough to think that we deserve financial success.

In most cultures, women are conditioned to put others? needs before our own and to think that our primary worth comes through our relationships with others. We are told that this is being ?nice? and that it makes us likeable, or good mothers or spouses. There can be a range of punishments when we step outside the allotted roles.

In general, women have been shown to have an external focus when making decisions, taking account of a whole group of people and surrounding conditions. Whereas men have a tendency to be driven by internal goals and status. So it could be said that women?s strengths can make us potentially better managers and leaders than men! I?m not saying that either one approach is right; for one thing, different approaches lead to diverse outcomes.

It pains me to say it, but we women can be our own worst enemies. We sometimes forget to aid each other in ascending the career ladder or attaining wealth goals. It can be all matey-matey when we?re all in the same boat, but when one of us starts moving upwards, that support can evaporate.

Some women resent others who seem able to transcend all the internal and external barriers, and leave them to sink or swim. In our society, women who really go for it, promoting themselves and gaining influence and power, are often labelled as unfeminine or even bitchy ? while men are lauded for doing the same thing. Given the huge amount of social conditioning, it?s not surprising that small numbers of women decide to do this; it can be a lonely furrow to plough. Men have had several hundred years to hone their business networking skills and many men feel rightly comfortable generating wealth and being open about their success. In my experience, most women do not feel comfortable with these things.

So, we women who want financial success need to step up to the plate and be different. We need to find a way round any fear we might feel and take action anyway. We need to challenge assumptions of what?s ?nice? or ?feminine?, we need to be bold and be willing to celebrate our success.

I say that accepting less pay is not an option ? who?s with me?

80% of women die without a partner around, and 75% of them die in poverty.

Do we want to end this cycle? Then let?s acknowledge our skills, our entitlement and our power ? act on this in your own life today.

I love receiving your feedback ? did I push your buttons? Am I wrong? Add your thoughts below or email me at Let?s make the change we want to see.

?Bye for now,


Caroline Banhidy is CEO of Smart Womens? Money and a keen advocate for women taking responsibility for the outcomes in their lives, including financial independence. She believes that your relationship with money is a direct reflection of your relationship with yourself, so sort your finances out and the rest will follow!

You can learn more at

Also, get your free copy of ?The 7 Biggest Mistakes Women make with Money and How to Avoid Them? here:

Change your life today. Give meaning to your money and start living the life of your dreams.


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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Latest On How Whitney Houston Died: Surprise! It's Drugs - The ...

[Ed. Note: This has to be the most awkward set of file photos to be released in the wake of Whitney's death, so of course we ran them. In a way, it's what Whitney would've wanted. Mostly because she drank a lot. - SW]

Despite early reports suggesting an accidental drowning, TMZ reports Whitney Houston?s family have been officially informed the cause of death is drug and alcohol related which, let?s be honest, probably isn?t going to cause any of them to clutch their pearls except maybe Dionne who should?ve seen it coming:

Whitney Houston?s family was told by L.A. County Coroner officials ? the singer did not die from drowning, but rather from what appears to be a combination of Xanax and other prescription drugs mixed with alcohol ? this according to family sources.
We?re told Coroner?s officials informed the family there was not enough water in Whitney?s lungs to lead to the conclusion that she drowned.
Our sources say the family was told Whitney may well have died before her head became submerged.

So now that drowning?s been ruled out, I guess we can let Aquaman off the hook even though he?s still a gill-faced junkie whose half-porpoise son cries each night for a father that?s never home. In the meantime, probably my favorite Whitney story of the past 24 hours, has to be LA Times reporter Gerrick Kennedy who went on TODAY this morning and tried to act like he noticed something ?off? about Whitney hours before her death. Via Mediaite:

Kennedy reported that, ?though Houston greeted people with a warm smile, she appeared disheveled in mismatched clothes and hair that was dripping wet with either sweat or water.?
The visibly bloated singer displayed erratic behavior throughout the afternoon ? flailing her hands frenetically as she spoke to Brandy and Monica, skipping around the ballroom in a child-like fashion and wandering aimlessly about the lobby. It was mentioned by a Grammy staffer that security personnel received calls of the singer doing handstands by the pool.
After leaving rehearsals, Houston returned to the ballroom ? with her teenage daughter Bobbi Kristina in tow ? as camera crews set up for interviews. The singer smelled of alcohol and cigarettes. A Grammy staffer said that during the interviews with Brandy, Monica and Clive, Houston was dancing just off camera to make the singers and Davis laugh. Grammy personnel expressed concern that she?d be caught on camera, and that reporters would write about her behavior.

So basically this guy saw Whitney Houston acting exactly like Whitney Houston hours before her death and that passes for dramatic insight on morning television? Jesus. I get that audience has a median age of 63, but I?m pretty sure most of them already suspected drugs because old people are notoriously racist. But in a cute, hilarious way, so go easy on them.

Photos: Bauer-Griffin, Pacific Coast News


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Russian hot springs point to rocky origins for life

Continue reading page |1 |2

It's a question that strikes at the very heart of one of the deepest mysteries in the universe: how did life begin on Earth? New evidence challenges the widespread view that it all kicked off in the oceans, around deep-sea hydrothermal vents.

Instead, hot springs on land, similar to the "warm little pond" favoured by Charles Darwin, may be a better fit for the cradle of life.

The controversial new theory suggests the search for extraterrestrial life must go beyond a hunt for alien oceans (see Land ho! The search for ET, below).

Life appeared sometime before 3.8 billion years ago, towards the end of a turbulent phase in our planet's early history dubbed Hadean Earth. Exactly where and how this happened is still a mystery. The first fossils are about 3.4 billion years old, and all we know about life's very first stages comes from chemical signatures in rocks.

This hasn't stopped endless speculation. Conventional wisdom has it that hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor offered an ideal chemical environment for the earliest life. Deep, dark oceans would also have protected the delicate cells from the harmful ultraviolet light that bathed early Earth before the ozone layer formed.

Case closed? Not quite. Armen Mulkidjanian at the University of Osnabru?ck in Germany says there is a fundamental problem with the ocean floor hypothesis: salt. The cytoplasm found inside all cells contains much more potassium than sodium. Mulkidjanian thinks that chemistry reflects the chemistry of the water life first appeared in, yet salty seawater is sodium-rich and potassium-poor.

"The ancient sea contained the wrong balance of sodium and potassium for the origin of cells," says Mulkidjanian. Now, after extensive field studies, he claims to have found the one place on Earth where that balance is right: in the thermal springs of Kamchatka in far-east Siberia. Mulkidjanian found that puddles condensing from the hydrothermal vapour at Siberia's Mutnovsky thermal springs are potassium-rich, just like cell cytoplasm (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073.pnas.1117774109). Life first appeared in similar pools, says Mulkidjanian.

And while early life would have been damaged if over-exposed to UVs, Mulkidjanian's theory solves another puzzle. Most evolutionary biologists agree that life at this stage would have been little more than floating strands of DNA and RNA. The nucleotides that make up DNA and RNA are all surprisingly stable when exposed to UV light, suggesting they evolved in an environment where UV exposure weeded out all but the most photostable molecules. "You don't get UV light around deep-sea vents," says Mulkidjanian.

"I do not think the oceans were a favourable environment for the origin of life ? freshwater ponds seem more favourable," says Nobel laureate Jack Szostak at Harvard University, a key player in the field. "Freshwater ponds have lower salt concentrations, which would allow for fatty acid based membranes to form."

While Darwin's warm little ponds appear to be coming back in vogue, this is a highly polarised field of research and many origin-of-life researchers are not convinced. Nick Lane at University College London disputes the claims that the first cells couldn't cope with life in sodium-rich water. Early cells could have actively pumped out sodium ions, he says. "This is exactly what many methanogens and acetogens do," he points out, referring to microbes that are thought to be among the earliest cellular life forms. This, says Lane, is good evidence that the earliest living cells did indeed actively pump out sodium ions.

Carrine Blank, a geologist at the University of Montana in Missoula says life was unlikely to survive on land 3.8 billion years ago, at a time when meteorites were pummelling Earth. Mulkidjanian counters that some geologists now question whether the late heavy bombardment, as it is known, really happened at that time (Elements, DOI: 10.2113/gselements.5.1.23).

Others contacted by New Scientist labelled Mulkidjanian's ideas absurd and declined to comment. Undoubtedly, most researchers still favour the sea as the cradle of life. Still, Mulkidjanian is not alone in looking for a land-based alternative.

Paul Knauth, a geologist at Arizona State University in Tempe, also thinks life may not have begun in the sea ? which he says has ramifications for the search for extraterrestrial life. He has analysed the oxygen isotopes in the silica-rich rocks deposited early in Earth's history, from which you can work out temperatures at the time the rocks formed. He says that the entire planet was much hotter than anyone suspected ? surface temperatures of 50 to 80 0C may have been common. The seas were also twice as salty as today, because so-called "evaporitic" deposits - which locked away vast quantities of salt - had not begun to form. "The early ocean was a deathtrap of hot salty water," he says. "I like the idea of a non-marine origin."

Then there is the fossil evidence. Although the fossil record doesn't capture events at the origin of life, it does record some slightly later chapters in life's history, which origin-of-life researchers "ignore at their peril", according to Martin Brasier at the University of Oxford. Last year Brasier unearthed the oldest fossils so far: 3.43-billion-year-old bacteria. He found them in Australia, in non-marine rocks that formed on a beach. "I am coming round to the opinion that we may be wrong about the ocean as the mother of life," says Brasier.

Continue reading page |1 |2

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Philips 418210 Dimmable AmbientLED 4-Watt MR16 Indoor Spot Light

Philips AmbientLED Energy Saving 4-Watt MR16 flood light is ideal for use in kitchens, dining rooms and living rooms. It provides a soft, white light and is perfect for general light or accent lighting to highlight your decor. Fully dimmable, this GU10, twist and lock base flood light replaces your current 35-Watt halogen MR16, saving you up to 82.25 in energy costs.Philips AmbientLED Energy Saving MR16 flood light can be used in the following fixtures: Track light Open recessed fixtures Personalize your home with stylish accent or ambient lighting.Philips advanced LED bulbs can enhance your home with bright, white light, while reducing your carbon footprint and your electric bill. The elegant design provides increased life when compared to less-efficient incandescent and are ideal for decorative fixtures, table lamps and recessed lighting.See what light can do for your home.Philips LED lighting can improve ambience, energy-efficiency and comfort in your home while delivering performance you can count on. Switching to higher efficiency LED lighting can help reduce your electric bill, preserve our environment and create the perfect lighting for your home.Lower operating costs means reduced energy bills.Longer life reduces the hassle of replacing bulbs so often.Better for the environment because they reduce greenhouse gases and shrink your carbon footprint.Easy to use because they are designed in traditional bulb shapes and fit easily into existing fixtures.With bulb shapes available in PARs, R, MR16 spots and floods, A-shapes, candles and specialty bulbs, Philips? family of LED light bulbs offer a wide range of solutions for household applications. Instant-on with quiet operationWill not fade fabrics or colorsMercury-freeMany types are dimmableContemporary designs A simple switch can make a difference in the home and environment.

  • Philips 4-Watt Ambient LED Energy Saving MR16 flood light can replace your 35-Watt halogen MR16, saving you up to 82.25 in energy costs
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Equipment: The Reebok I-run Fitness Treadmill Machine Evaluation ...

Having gyms generally staying harshly neon-lit, sweaty, airless boxes, blaring music by MTV, is it virtually any wonder that although most people will join them utilizing every intention of following working out for health along with fitness, they soon fall out? Accidental injuries may result if people are not careful incase one uses an incorrect kind of devices. Experts advise all-around crunches utilising these balls. If your whole gym plan truly doesn?t fascinate you, then you?re definitely a superb candidate for planning a home health and fitness centre. If you?re either configuring a home gym maybe a commercial gym, whether the hardware is new as well as used is connected with small relevance when the used fitness equipment is within a good, safe working purchase. Most workout trainers strengthen top and lower system, although some provide just lower system exercise. This quick-start functions will encourage the user to change the quality of resistance as one exercise to advance you to ultimately a new amount.

Drag ups are the most intense exercises globally, and the only equipment they want are pull upward bars. Make certain while you buying treadmill stylish good quality or not and it?s also in good situation or not and contains warranty. But beware while you get exactly that which you pay for with regards to these products. For nearly everybody, a few standards would straight away springs to mind. To stay informed about this type connected with competition we as individuals really need to focus more for our body?s health and fitness. Having said that, not all people are able to a inversion table pair of dumbbells. Each and every fitness enthusiast likes to get his control and legs on equipment from which he can derive the uppermost level of benefit. About 6, 000 open settings and parks own exercise equipment which might be accessed by lots of people, and in Sydney, over 50 percent from the parks have weather-proof, ultra-modern exercise accessories.

You don?t wish to be wrestling to help the flexibility of your exercise equipment apparel, instead of a mans. This bench handily detaches pertaining to power rack accessibility. Resulting from less hard function and easy everyday life increased fat plus cholesterol among people which can be the root cause for some health problems plus diseases. The particular manufacturers have to ensure the equipments are created to meet the desired need from the customer and ought to take special need for innovating things a more recent level. You possibly can learn about the online learning course, prices, ease of use and also benefits to often be had. Since some of us can quickly receive bored doing the exact same routine, choose home equipment that will let you do a number of exercises on it again.

Before you actually go, don?t forget to read simple things this TRX fitness review that post about a TRX bonus code for 2010. Health hails from fitness and fitness is manufactured by using equipment, right? Treadmills, exercise bikes, and elliptical trainers are the most common choices for cardio workouts and are fantastic for building aerobic exercise endurance and are simplified as well. If cost is actually a factor you might find that the adjustable dumbells are more expensive so it may be better to select the other variety. By knowing relating to totally different well-being equipments, you?ll by simply no means go not fit with any health equipments acquire. If you won?t want that to occur, you must to begin with recognize your fitness needs after which it plan and plan your fitness strategy. T think about the machine as a powerful appliance; view it as insurance for the rest in the world.


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Fashion, Philanthropy and Figure Skating? Vera Wang Is the Woman of the Week

For her stunning style and continued charity work Vera Wang is the iVillage woman of the week


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Grammys honor Houston, celebrate 'fallen sister' (AP)

The Grammy Awards was transformed into a Whitney Houston memorial, where attendees celebrated the pop star and the show hurriedly assembled a last-minute tribute.

Sunday night's ceremony, just a day after Houston was found dead in her Beverly Hills hotel room, began with the tone of a wake, where the music industry family honored one of its biggest stars and a six-time Grammy winner.

"We've had a death in our family," said host LL Cool J shortly after Bruce Springsteen opened the show by singing, with obvious poignancy, his new single, "We Take of Our Own."

Cool J led the crowd in a prayer for music's "fallen sister," as the Staples Center crowd bowed their heads. He declared the night one to "celebrate and remember," and played a clip of Houston performing "I Will Always Love You" from the 1994 Grammys.

Later in the show, Jennifer Hudson, the actress and "American Idol" finalist, was to perform a tribute to the 48-year-old Houston. That her death came so soon before the CBS broadcast meant "a full-blown tribute" wasn't possible, said Grammy show producer Ken Ehrlich.

With just hours to prepare a fitting tribute, the Grammys had to act quickly.

"Musicians, by nature, improvise," said Neil Portnow, president of the Recording Academy, on the red carpet before the show. Portnow said the tribute was the result of hours of frantic phone calls in the aftermath of Houston's death.

The vibe of the awards was altered from merely a flashy awards party. Houston had been expected to perform at the pre-awards gala Saturday night thrown by music impresario Clive Davis.

"Whenever there's tragedy, family pulls together ? and this is my family," said producer Jimmy Jam. "There's going to a little bit of everything tonight, and that's how the emotions should be."

"I'm glad we're all together to grieve together," said Bonnie Raitt.

For those who were particularly close to Houston, the evening was a difficult one. Just days before, on Thursday, R&B singer Kelly Price performed a duet of "Yes, Jesus Loves Me" with Houston at a pre-Grammy celebration ? Houston's last performance.

"I'm here," said an emotional Price, a friend and a frequent collaborator with Houston. "She gave the genre of R&B music a gift that can never be denied."

Heartfelt reaction came across genres.

"Few people will ever touch the world as much as Whitney Houston," said country star Billy Ray Cyrus.

Musicians who grew up in the 1980s recognized the loss a soundtrack to their youth. R&B singer Ledisi burst into a warm, impromptu rendition of Houston's "How Will I Know" on the red carpet.

"It's a very somber tone tonight at the Grammys because we lost our hero," R&B singer Kelly Rowland told E! "My heart is heavy."

The Grammys were far from alone in honoring Houston. Reaction continued to pour in on social media. BET, MTV and VH1 ran tributes to the singer Sunday. Oprah Winfrey said she would remember Houston in a two-hour tribute Thursday on the Oprah Winfrey Network.


Global Entertainment and Lifestyles Editor Alicia Quarles contributed to this report from Los Angeles.


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Monday, February 13, 2012

Arabs end Syrian mission, seek joint UN force (Reuters)

CAIRO (Reuters) ? Arab states sought to regain momentum to end bloodshed in Syria with a call on Sunday for a joint U.N.-Arab peacekeeping force and renewed efforts to build international support by hosting a meeting of Arabs and Western powers later this month.

Syrian swiftly rejected the latest Arab League resolution that called for supporting the Syrian opposition which has been demanding an end to the rule of President Bashar al-Assad, who has sent tanks and troops to quash 11 months of protests.

Arab ministers met in Cairo to revive their diplomatic efforts that hit the buffers when Russia and China vetoed a U.N. resolution that was based on a Western-backed Arab peace plan.

As part of those efforts, Tunisia said it would host the first meeting on February 24 of a "Friends of Syria" contact group made up of Arab and other states and backed by Western powers.

"How long will we stay as onlookers to what is happening to the brotherly Syrian people, and how much longer will we grant the Syrian regime one period after another so it can commit more massacres against its people?" Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal asked ministers at the start of the League session.

"At our meeting today I call for decisive measures, after the failure of the half-solutions," he said.

The League resolution said Arabs would scrap a monitoring mission which they sent to Syria in late December but which was criticized by Syria's opposition as ineffective from the outset. It also faced internal dissent and logistical problems.

The Sudanese general leading the observers quit on Sunday.

"I won't work one more time in the framework of the Arab League," General Mohammed al-Dabi, whose appointment had been criticized because of Sudan's own rights record, told Reuters.

"I performed my job with full integrity and transparency but I won't work here again as the situation is skewed," he added.

In place of the Arab team, the League called for the U.N. Security Council to issue a resolution setting up a joint U.N.-Arab peacekeeping mission to go to Syria.

League chief Nabil Elaraby floated the idea last week but it drew only a lukewarm support from diplomats at the United Nations. The United States and Germany said they were studying it.

An Arab diplomat last week compared such a mission to the U.N.-Africa Union military force UNAMID sent to Sudan's Darfur region. U.N. officials and Western delegations have criticized UNAMID as ineffective, partly because it is a joint operation.


The League called for "opening communication channels with the Syrian opposition and providing all forms of political and material support to it," and urged the opposition to unite. One League official said "material" was intended to mean financial.

Syria's ambassador to the League rejected the League resolution "completely," Syria's state news agency reported. He said Syria, which has been suspended from the League, would not accept any resolution decided in its absence.

Lebanon, a neighbor which was long dominated by Syria, and Algeria voiced reservations, Egypt's state news agency said.

The League resolution said violence against civilians in Syria had violated international law and "perpetrators deserve punishment." It also reaffirmed a call for Arabs to implement economic sanctions on Syria and decided on ending diplomatic cooperation with Damascus.

Analysts and diplomats say sanctions that Arabs agreed to impose last year had limited impact so far because Iraq and other neighbors have not implemented them.

Although the ministers lent their support to the opposition, the resolution did not recognize the opposition.

Tunisian Foreign Minister Rafik Ben Abdessalem told reporters that recognizing the Syrian National Council was "premature and requires the opposition get unified."

Ben Abdessalem also announced that Tunisia would host the meeting of "Friends of Syria," a plan proposed by France and the United States after Russia and China used their veto.

Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani said the new forum would provide "a good opportunity to try to create a clear international direction to help the Syrian people to exit the crisis."

Gulf states, which have led action on Syria, said last week they were recalling their ambassadors from Syria and expelling Syria's envoys. Libya and Tunisia, both countries where popular revolts toppled autocratic rulers last year, have done the same.

Diplomats at the United Nations said Saudi Arabia had circulated a new draft resolution backing the Arab plan for the General Assembly, rather than the Security Council, to consider. Assembly resolutions are non-binding but cannot be vetoed.

However, Riyadh denied on Sunday reports that it had formally presented the resolution to the assembly.

The League resolution expressed the "disappointment towards the Russia and Chinese stance which used a veto against supporting the Arab peace plan."

Egypt's news agency said Elaraby had proposed appointing former Jordanian minister and U.N. envoy to Libya, Abdel Elah al-Khatib, as the League's special envoy to Syria. But a source in the meeting said Khatib's name was not put forward.

(Additional reporting by Tom Perry, Tamim Elyan and Omar Fahmy; Writing by Edmund Blair; Editing by Myra MacDonald)


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Financial lobby in holding pattern (Politico)

See you in 2013, Congress.

That may as well be the financial lobby?s message to federal lawmakers this year as banks and investment houses acknowledge they?ve largely written off 2012 as lost for affecting major policy priorities such as undoing Wall Street reform or torpedoing the nascent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Continue Reading

The punt is thanks in large part to a bitterly divided Congress that isn?t much interested in or able to push through most changes either sweeping or incremental. Something like passing the Dodd-Frank bill, or undoing it, for that matter, seems as unlikely today as it was possible just two years ago.

?Everyone in town is hiring a lot more lawyers than lobbyists,? said Richard Hunt, president of the Consumer Bankers Association. ?Anything we would like to get done will either be vetoed by the president or not get through the Senate. There?s nothing big going on in Congress.?

That doesn?t mean there isn?t government influence action afoot this year: Regulatory agencies, not Congress, are instead taking a more leading role.

The Securities and Exchange Commission, which is tasked with making rules for Wall Street reform legislation, is a prime example.

A flurry of action has also taken place early this year at the SEC, Federal Reserve, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency surrounding the so-called Volcker rule, which puts limits on how banks may trade their own funds in an attempt to slow investments in potentially risky products, such as securities and derivatives.

In December, the government extended the period during which industry and public advocates could comment on the proposed framework for the limitations? implementation. That comment period ends this week after attracting significant attention.

Other less explosive agenda items, such as the disclosure ratio between chief executive and rank-and-file employee pay, also remain in the regulatory mix.

As for congressional lobbying, it?s hardly going away.

There are relatively minor legislative battles in the offing ? a transaction tax for financial firms and measures to strengthen cybersecurity are examples.

But two industry lobbyists likened activity there to a sports team in the midst of a rebuilding year in which the goal isn?t so much to win a championship as it is to build a foundation for future successes.


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Column: What happened to Tiger on Sunday? (AP)

The pretenders were as obedient as ever and folded early, just like they always seemed to when Tiger Woods was in his prime.

Still mostly ahead of him was a course he knew well, one where he once rewrote the record books. Beside him was a player he knew well, a guy who used to always look for an excuse to blink.

It was the perfect opportunity to put more than two years of misery behind him. The perfect time to make the statement that, yes, he was finally back.

Unfortunately, there's nothing perfect about Tiger Woods anymore.

He used to threaten to make history every time he teed off. Now he just makes excuses, and they all sound the same.

He says he's at peace with himself, and that may well be true. Put him in a red shirt on Sunday, though, and the demons seem to all come back.

It happened last time out in Abu Dhabi, when a mop-haired Englishman who had won only one time in his career stared him down in the final round. It happened again on Sunday at Pebble Beach, where he seemed to be trying so hard not to fail that he gave himself no chance to succeed.

Phil Mickelson blew by him like Woods was playing in the pro-am instead of teeing it up with the big boys. Things got so bad you almost wanted him to move up to the forward tees, where at least his amateur partner Tony Romo was finding some success.

He walked up the 18th fairway to the cheers everyone expected when the day began. But they were for Mickelson, who had walked ahead of him after stiffing a wedge to the final green.

It got worse. Mickelson was already in the hole for his final round 64 when Woods lipped out one final short putt for a big, fat 75. He could have ? make that should have ? putted out before Mickelson to avoid the final embarrassment, but Woods never really practiced the proper etiquette for finishing out of contention.

For what seems like forever now we've been asking what's wrong with Tiger. Now the question becomes what's wrong with Tiger on Sunday?

The record books will show he lost by nine shots in a tournament he trailed by four on the final day. Even worse, he was thrashed by Mickelson, his playing partner, by a stunning 11 shots.

Say what you will about his game getting so much better that he has been in contention in his four more recent tournaments. This would have never happened to the Tiger Woods of old.

He didn't always win on Sundays, even if it seemed that way. But he was never blown out the way Mickelson disposed of him on a course where he was once untouchable.

"Anything I tried to do wasn't working," Woods said. "What was frustrating was I had a chance, all I had to do was get off to a good, solid start today and I didn't do that."

Actually, the start wasn't all that bad. It was the middle, where Woods missed two short putts in a row and made three bogeys in a row that destroyed what little chance he had left. By then his body language had conceded defeat, even if he hadn't.

To put his round in perspective, only four of the 68 players who teed off on the final day shot worse. On a day Pebble Beach was there for the taking, Woods got taken.

And then the excuses began.

"I didn't hit it as bad as the score indicated, but I putted awful," he said. "I just could not see my lines. I couldn't get comfortable."

For those keeping score at home, he hasn't won a real tournament (I don't count the 18-man invitational he hosts and won in December, though Woods does) in 27 months; hasn't won on the PGA Tour in 29 months. It's been nearly four years since he won his last major at Torrey Pines, and he's now 36 with a history of knee issues.

That doesn't mean he's not going to win again. He surely will, because he's still immensely talented. But those wins will come sporadically instead of in bunches, the way they used to.

The majors will be more problematic. Woods might still win a Masters or two, if only because he knows where to play every shot, every putt, at Augusta National. He might pick up a stray British Open or maybe a PGA Championship, assuming that he can get himself to believe once again that he becomes invincible when he puts on his Sunday red.

The majors are how Woods keeps score, and right now Jack Nicklaus is still ahead 18-14. It was almost a foregone conclusion after the U.S. Open in 2008 that he would catch Nicklaus, but my guess now is he never will.

His personal issues and constant swing tinkering threw him a curve ball that will be tough to recover from. But it's more his putting now, with his nerves betraying him on short putts that were always gimmes in his prime. That happens to golfers as they age, and it's happening to even the great Tiger Woods.

The golf season is well underway, with Los Angeles next week the last tournament on the West Coast swing. The Masters awaits less than two months from now, and it's entirely conceivable his winless streak will be even longer by then.

Tiger Woods in red on Sunday used to mean something.

Now he's become just another player, wearing another color.


Tim Dahlberg is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at tdahlberg(at) or


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Big Pot Of Chicken Soup?just LikeMom Use To Make!

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The basis of a good soup is usually a good stock. Once you know how to make a good stock, you can use it for an almost endless variety of soups. This is a recipe I use for chicken stock that's easy to make, and tastes delicious ...


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Sunday, February 12, 2012

Putin's rivals face pressure, biased coverage (AP)

MOSCOW ? European election observers say that presidential hopefuls running against Prime Minister Vladimir Putin face "biased" reports by Kremlin-controlled media and constant government pressure.

Tiny Cox, who heads the Council of Europe mission to Russia, said Saturday that all four candidates complain that Putin's government is using its "administrative resources" to influence voters, while Russian television extensively covers Putin's activities.

The candidates are Communist Party chief Gennady Zyuganov, ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky, socialist Just Russia leader Sergei Mironov and billionaire tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov.

Other politicians have been denied registration in the race on technicalities.

Despite recent opposition rallies, Putin seems certain to win the March 4 vote.


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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Goal setting tips can be a necessary element of enhancing a sense ...

This article can show you how to get your ex back ten

Find out what for you to do with ourselves. This won?t indicate that you want to pre-plan the whole personal life ahead. Look into the upcoming 5 years. When so you should end up being? So what does your daily life seem like? Should you review this unique perspective you may move at a distance any tiers and discover the best quality thing to do to build the places you end up being.

Speak with those people that boost anyone. View how much mantras construct y adhere to to help improve their personal unique plus points and also work towards their personal unique weak spots. Use the procedures when principles not to mention adhere to these individuals with case in point. Utilize other?s potency to increase your personal.

The moment goal setting techniques, it?s important to depend on oneself. You happen to be fantastic someone, that you are special, that you are robust not to mention have the ability. Please don?t take note on just what exactly many people should tell you, you?re victorious. You will slip, nevertheless, you can aquire back off. Never let any person remain decrease, it is.

For those who have a hefty, outwardly not possible mission, destroy the software on to more palatable pieces. Undertaking an incredible mission in a short time can easily turn out to be difficult. Preferably, destroy be sure you?re on to as much minimal, hassle-free jobs as they can be. Then simply, give attention to carrying out every some of those jobs. Pretty soon, your current minimal campaigns will prove to add further up, helping you to attain any greater mission.

Placed a good not to mention probable mission to concentrate on. In a self improvement perspective, you might want to established some sort of short-term mission probable within a few years and then a long-term mission for those path you desire your daily life to ultimately. Regardless of whether any desired goals tend to be certified or simply unique, creating a undoubtedly outlined final result assists you to established an improvement schedule.

By far the most very important route to help your cerebral perspective not to mention a sense of intention can be to depend on one thing bigger than oneself. Find one thing (a reason, a goal, some sort of religious beliefs, or anything else.) which will movements anyone. You have got to depend on this unique innate value in this produce boost the local tissue; if you should engage in actually for yourself, you are upset. Discover one thing you think found in not to mention throw oneself on it.

Helping to make displays can assist you to uncover quiet. Being aware requires to be completed can assist you to ease a considerable amount of stress and anxiety once you defintely won?t be spending some looking to try to remember everything you wished to let that happen day of the week. This assists someone to seem like there is a schedule not to mention figure out what one can anticipate during the day that produces personal life reduced frenzied.

Whenever the relationship is no longer working available the same manner you would intended, it can be time frame for something different. Dictate your upcoming not to mention make moves you will have always aspired to undertake. To illustrate, should you have thought of for a airline ticket worker, or even server within a highly-priced fine dining, consequently do this. Giving oneself any handle to develop a modify will certainly instantly try to help your frame of mind, you are surprised.

Analyze any bodily meaning compass. When men or women seem outside the whole set of let-downs regarding personal life, possible tips in their real personal self. The majority of people obtain they are really bold, open, depend on criminal justice additionally, the potential benefits to self-sacrifice. Annoyance, stress and anxiety in addition to other behavior are inclined to put on surface of much of our real design, decreasing us all for you to lower than you can easily end up being. Get back with ourselves with enjoyable not to mention telling move from the overwhelmed psychologically and mentally . tiers.

Will you play the game a guitar for a activity? Which audio would you enjoy studying? Music and songs could be the speech from the angels and extremely how to win an ex back good for the internal. Studying songs or simply enjoying audio can be quite ?instrumental? within your process of recovery. Consider studying audio, not to mention feel calming that provide the software.

There are actually basic steps ways for you to accomplishment. The initial one is using path, as the 2nd is understanding where vacation spot is placed. The 3rd secret is learning should you to become self-sufficient. Latest, tighten up if your event requests someone to. Lastly, increase the speed of when you might for you to to build closer any desired goals. 6, total everything you commence. At last, you?ll want to replicate has a tendency to ways to be certain sustained accomplishment.

?Can?t? actually within your vocab. Take versus each other these days. Any time frame you consider anyone ?can?t? make moves, be sure to think of six purposes why you can?t simply, after which you can try to remember Really Could!! It will take more at the start to build would once this concept, but also from the final, you should ask yourself engage ever considered anyone weren?t able to.

In order for you any hopes for being real truth, cause them to be any desired goals. Visualizing one thing makes it much simpler to collapse the parts which will makeup foundation any area. If you will get to perfect the software, you can create something the software arise. By inviting oneself by designing any hopes inside solid desired goals, you may see oneself with a cutting edge submit personal life very fast.

Consult with some sort of hair stylist! There are some factors of transferring the graphic you want to express in your house personal life or simply to team members. All the flamboyant garments globally are not going to replace a horrible hair style or simply pattern. Hairdressers tend to be educated to provide try to cut and design you must supply you with the image confidence many people want to end that you are able.

Goal setting tips is actually a very important step up gaining better a sense of path not to mention intention in everyday life. Major depression shuts found in you simply while you depart from some sort of asphalt program and then a flabergasted quest for desired goals. Select one thing crucial to you together with focus on the software from the second anyone stand up each morning. This will help your natural health insurance and bring about some sort of more comfortable state of mind.


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Six Greater Kansas City Area Organizations to Provide Green Jobs ...

Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) is supporting six organizations in the Kansas City region to provide workforce development training programs in energy efficiency, water conservation and deconstruction through the EnergyWorks KC program.

EnergyWorks KC is the result of a $20 million grant received by the city of Kansas City, Mo., to transform the energy retrofit market for residential, commercial, industrial and institutional buildings. Initially, the program targets seven neighborhoods, with the ultimate goal of reaching the metropolitan area. As part of this effort, MARC is developing a green jobs pipeline to provide residents of the target areas with a career path for green job opportunities, from training to certification to employment. Residents will receive the necessary training and skills for energy retrofit careers, to work on EnergyWorks KC projects and other green job opportunities.

Below is an overview of the seven projects funded by MARC with support from the city of Kansas City, Mo.

Metropolitan Energy Center?will directly train or augment training workers in energy conservation including:

Commercial Energy Auditors, Weatherization Installation Contractors and Weatherization Installation Workers,

Deconstruction Workers, Recycling and Reclamation Workers, Hazardous Materials Removal Workers, Asbestos Abatement Workers, Lead Abatement Workers, and Environmental Compliance Inspectors.

Metropolitan Energy Center will work with:

a) unemployed or underemployed individuals seeking work in energy-related fields;

b) incumbent workers seeking additional credentials to advance in their careers; and

c) independent contractors or other businesses seeking additional credentials

Johnson County Community College

Johnson County Community College will provide green job training to JCCC students and help establish a green jobs pipeline in the metro area?s hospitality industry through the Sustainable Hospitality Internship program for seven interns. Program interns will help increase restaurants? energy efficiency and water conservation.

A stipend to each participating restaurant will help them implement building energy efficiency and/or water conservation measures on their prioritized project recommendation list. Examples include lighting retrofits, low-flow water fixtures, energy-efficient upgrades to hoods or other equipment, etc.

Kansas City Kansas Community College

Kansas City Kansas Community College will provide a Construction Green-Up training program to prepare unskilled and low-income individuals for employment in a construction ?green job,? with a focus on deconstruction training, which is defined as the selective dismantlement or removal of materials from buildings before, or instead of demolition. The curriculum has been designed around six modules or skill areas: Occupational Safety and Health certification; Lead Renovator, Repair and Painting certification; Forklift Operation certification; Deconstruction and Salvageable Material Training; Business and Entrepreneurship Workshop; and Essential Employability Skills and Career Placement.

University of Central Missouri

The University of Central Missouri will provide two training programs that are a part of the National Energy Retrofit Institute program ? Retrofit Brokers (RB) training and Residential Energy Client Service Coordinators (RECSC) training. The Retrofit Broker training will focus on underemployed real estate professionals who will provide direct energy awareness education to property owner. RECSC training will target unemployed individuals who can provide customer service for property owners wanting to explore energy efficiency.

Metropolitan Community College

MCC will train up to 35 individual contractors/laborers in abatement and deconstruction and offer small business development training to 12 new and small businesses. The program will implement an On-the-Job Training program to place up to 32 residents trained in abatement and deconstruction into jobs with contractors for the KCMOPD East Patrol Division and Regional Crime Lab?s $57 million development project on a 20-acre campus between 26th?27th Streets and Brooklyn?Prospect Avenues. Sixty-six structures, mostly residential, will be demolished and the city hopes to employ local companies hiring local residents to abate the properties and deconstruct using principles of materials remediation to reduce the amount of waste deposited in landfills.

Full Employment Council

FEC will develop a Green KC Careers Training Initiative to increase the number of individuals trained and placed in deconstruction, water conservation and building energy efficiency. The program model will provide ?green jobs? certifications based on work experience and energy-efficiency classroom training combined with internships. FEC will also develop a Web page designed as a one-stop ?green? career employment and training resource guide, providing information to customers regarding the Green KC Careers Initiative. It will function as a ?hot spot? for job seekers to obtain information on jobs and training and will provide employers with on-the-job training information, program guidelines, steps to submitting job listings and contact information.


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Thursday, February 9, 2012

HQ: To Do lets you quickly create simple, stylish task lists for iPhone

What it lacks in depth or features, HQ: To Do makes up for in speed, style, and simplicity. For those interested in getting things done, it’s a good place to


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Obama team returning money tied to casino owner

(AP) ? President Barack Obama's campaign is returning about $200,000 in contributions collected by family members of a Mexican casino owner who fled the U.S. after facing drug and fraud charges.

The Obama campaign said Monday it had decided to return the donations arranged by Chicago brothers Carlos Cardona and Alberto Rojas Cardona, who had begun raising money for the campaign and the Democratic National Committee last year.

The New York Times reported late Monday that the fundraisers are the brothers of casino owner Juan Jose Rojas Cardona, who skipped bail in Iowa in 1994 and has since been linked to violence and corruption in Mexico.

The campaign said it refunded the money raised by family members after the newspaper asked about the brothers' fundraising role. Obama campaign officials said they were identifying donations bundled by other people connected to Cardona, expected to be about $100,000, and would return those funds as well.

"On the basis of the questions that have been raised, we will return the contributions from these individuals and from any other donors they brought to the campaign," said Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt.

The newspaper reported that Gordon Fischer, a lawyer and the former chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party, had sought a pardon for Juan Jose Rojas Cardona from Iowa Gov. Chet Culver, a Democrat, but it was not granted.

Associated Press


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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

World News - US eyes humanitarian aid for Syrian people, White ...

Syrian forces continued their brutal assault in the city of Homs as Russia's foreign minister held talks with President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus. ITN's Paul Davies reports.

By NBC News, and news services

Updated at 3 p.m. ET: The White House is considering?providing humanitarian aid to the Syrian people, even while it ramps up?pressure on the?President Bashar Assad's government,?Reuters reported on Tuesday.

"We are going to continue to work with international allies ... to put the pressure required,'' White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters, reiterating that?the Obama administration was not weighing the prospects of arming anti-government forces seeking to topple Assad.

But without offering details, he said: "We are exploring the possibilty of providing humanitarian aid to Syrians.''

Updated at 12:40 a.m. ET: Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov urges Syrian President Bashar Assad to move ahead with reforms during his visit to?Damascus Tuesday.

"Necessary reforms must be implemented in order to address legitimate demands of the people striving for a better life," Lavrov tells Assad in their talks, according to Russian state-run news agency ITAR-Tass. "It's clear that efforts to stop the violence should be accompanied by the beginning of dialogue among the political forces."

Assad replies that Syria is "determined" to hold a national dialogue with the opposition and independent figures and that his?government is "ready to cooperate with any effort that boosts stability in Syria," according to the state news agency SANA.

?Updated at 9:15 a.m. ET: Gulf Arab countries announced they were recalling their ambassadors from Damascus and expelling Syrian envoys in response to worsening violence in Syria.

The move came after thousands of Syrians cheered the arrival of Russia's foreign minister as he arrived in Damascus, and the government resumed a fierce attack on a city at the center of protests.

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, current head of the council, announces that the GCC states have decided to withdraw all their ambassadors from Syria and also demand that all ambassadors of the Syrian regime in its lands leave immediately,'' a statement
from the Gulf Cooperation Council said.

The six-member GCC includes Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Original story: Thousands of Syrians waving Russian flags cheered Russia's foreign minister as he arrived in Damascus as a city at the center of protests against President Bashar Assad's regime came under renewed bombardment on Tuesday.

Regime forces stepped up an assault on the flashpoint city of Homs, using tanks and machine guns in a push to recover rebel-held districts, The Associated Press reported.

The United States has closed its embassy in Syria amid violent unrest, and international pressure is mounting on Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad to stop his bloody crackdown on a popular uprising in the country. NBC's Ayman Mohyeldin reports.

As dawn broke, gunfire was reported in Homs where the opposition Syrian National Council said dozens of people were killed on Monday and activists claimed 200 died in shelling over the weekend, The Guardian reported.

Syrian authorities denied firing on houses but said their forces killed "tens of terrorists" in Homs on Monday, the newspaper added.

More than 5,400 people have been killed in Syria since the uprising began in March, the U.N. said early last month. Hundreds more are believe to have been killed since then, but the U.N. says the chaos in the country has made it impossible to cross-check the figures.

Syria has blocked access to trouble spots and prevented independent reporting, making it nearly impossible to verify accounts from either side. The Assad regime says terrorists acting out a foreign conspiracy to destabilize the country are behind the uprising, not people seeking to transform the authoritarian regime.

The United States has closed its embassy in Syria amid violent unrest, and international pressure is mounting on Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad to stop his bloody crackdown on a popular uprising in the country. NBC's Ayman Mohyeldin reports.

US shutters embassy in Syria, withdraws staff

On Monday, troops shelled a makeshift medical clinic and residential areas, killing nearly 70 people, activists told The AP. More than a dozen others were reported killed elsewhere.

Meanwhile, German investigators said they had arrested two men?on allegations they were spying on Syrian opposition groups in Germany. The two men, named as Mahmoud El A., 47, and Akram O., had been under surveillance by Germany's domestic intelligence agency and would be brought before a judge on Wednesday, NBC News reported.

The Federal Prosecutors' Office said Tuesday some 70 police officers searched the suspects' apartments and those of six alleged

'Thank you Russia and China'
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's visit for talks with the embattled president comes days after Syrian allies Russia and China vetoed a Western- and Arab-backed resolution at the United Nations that would have condemned the Assad regime's crackdown on dissent and calling on him to transfer some of his powers to his deputy. The Syrian government had rejected the Arab plan as intervention in Syria's internal affairs.

Stringer / Reuters

A man inspects an armored vehicle damaged during clashes between President Bashar Assad's forces and the Free Syrian Army in Homs on Saturday.

Live footage from the capital showed Lavrov's convoy snaking its way along the Mazzeh boulevard among a sea of Assad supporters who turned up to express gratitude for Moscow's supportive stance. The foreign minister and Russia's foreign intelligence chief Mikhail Fradkov were headed to the presidential palace to meet with Assad.

"Thank you Russia and China" read one banner that had the photos of both Assad and the Russian president. Many stood under rain carrying Syrian flags as well as the red, blue and white Russian banner and balloons.

Hillary Clinton lambastes 'travesty' of UN veto on Syria

Lavrov on Monday said Western condemnation of Russia's veto of the UN Security Council resolution on Saturday bordered on "hysteria."

Ongoing violence and a worsening security situation has been further complicated by Russia and China's decision to block a U.N Security Council resolution on Syria. NBC's Ayman Mohyeldin reports.

Russia is Syria's main supplier of arms and the port of Tartus is home to Russia's only Mediterranean naval base, the BBC reported.

NBC News, staff and The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The way to take care of hemroids | New Health and Fitness ...

New Health And Fitness.Org - Health Information You Can Use

There are a number of available remedies for hemorrhoids such as a change in diet and increase in fluids, specialized bathing solutions or simple over the counter ointments. Surgery is rare and only used for very severe cases. This article can help you to understand the causes, and to find effective relief measures for hemorrhoids when they do occur.

Organic olive oil can be a home treatment you can try regarding hemorrhoid treatment method. Organic olive oil, since odd as it can look, is acknowledged for its capability to decrease inflammation as well as lowering scratching due to piles. Just use organic olive oil for the external hemroids, nevertheless. This product is definitely certainly not designed for inside utilize.

To be able to ameliorate the soreness associated with hemroids, get rid of some lbs! Piles discomfort may be made worse by simply carrying unwanted weight. Belly pressure from extra weight can cause stress with your rectal veins. An excellent weight loss plan for somebody suffering from hemorrhoids comes with plenty of foods high in fiber. Prevent having laxatives to shed pounds or even take care of the piles.

Digestive tract gasoline can cause hemorrhoid pain, so do not eat meals that causes fuel. The strain about the anus due to passing petrol may possibly irritate your current hemroids. Keeping away from gas-causing foods is always recommended.

A primary reason for hemorrhoid flare-ups will be overexerting muscle groups in the region from the sphincter. Should you suffer from repeating piles, know about precisely how challenging you might be placing those muscles.

To help with swelling and also discomfort from hemorrhoids, utilize grape seedling gas. It may help destroy problematic vein bacterial infections and reduce blood loss.

There are many easy and effective ways to prevent recurring hemorrhoids. When you have to defecate, don?t ignore it. When you hold in the urge to defecate, your body reabsorbs some of the moisture in your stool. This makes your stool harder so that you have to strain when you?re ready to release it. Straining worsens hemorrhoids, and should be avoided.

If you suffer from hemorrhoids, it is helpful to use a sitz bath after every bowel movement. This will help to reduce any itchiness and irritation that can occur after having a bowel movement. After the bath is complete, you want to pat dry the anal area instead of rubbing it.

If however you experience the pain involving hemorrhoids, you might consider using a stool conditioner often. Don?t press tough for any digestive tract movement. Driving could cause soreness, discomfort and further complications down the road.

A good way to lower your likelihood of developing external hemroids is always to apply far better bathroom health. By way of example, utilize moistened, flushable towelettes soon after every intestinal movements; these kind of wipes can be obtained essentially grocers which enable it to be kept in the toilet. Additionally, purchase soft make-up that is certainly textured and doesn?t abandon pieces of paper at the rear of.

Since the above write-up features talked about, plenty of outstanding treatments throughout controlling piles ache exist. Do not forget that surgical treatment is often an alternative, if you fail to take control of your problem any longer. Being aware what might cause hemorrhoids, as well as your skill to prevent these people, may help alleviate your own enduring.

Learn more about hemorrhoids home remedy. Stop by Joe Barton?s site where you can find out all about Hemorrhoid Removal and what it can do for you.

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