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Wikinews interviews Jim Babka, chair of Libertarian organization Downsize DC

Thursday, April 3, 2008

A reporter from Wikinews recently interviewed Jim Babka, chair of Libertarian organization Downsize DC. The organization claims to have arranged for 22,158 people to send a message regarding the “American Freedom Agenda Act” proposed by Ron Paul, in addition to supporting many other laws. The full text of the interview can be found below.

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Amnesty International accuses Israel of “war crimes” in Lebanon

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The human rights organisation Amnesty International has accused Israel of committing war crimes by deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure in Lebanon during the Israel-Lebanon conflict, calling the attacks “indiscriminate and disproportionate”. Israel has rejected the charge.

“The pattern, scope and scale of the attacks makes Israel’s claim that this was ‘collateral damage’, simply not credible,” said Kate Gilmore, of Amnesty International.

Amnesty International cites the magnitude of the destruction caused by Israeli air strikes and artillery bombings, and declarations such as the one made by Israeli Chief of Staff Lt Gen Dan Halutz, that “nothing is safe [in Lebanon], as simple as that”, as evidence that civilians were deliberately targeted.

Israel rejected the accusation, stating that the bombings of civilian areas was justified because Hezbollah uses civilians as “humans shields” : Lebanese infrastructure was “targeted only when that infrastructure was being exploited by the Hezbollah machine, and this is in accordance with the rules of war”, said the Israeli spokesman Mark Regev. “Unlike Hezbollah, we did not deliberately target the Lebanese civilian population”, Mr. Regev said.

Over 1,000 Lebanese, mostly civilians were killed during the fighting, while 161 Israelis, mostly soldiers, were killed by Hezbollah. The Israeli attacks also wounded about 4,000 people, and turned nearly 1 million people, a quarter of the population of Lebanon, into internal refugees.

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Japanese tsunami impacts California coastal town

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The tsunami caused by Japan’s magnitude 8.9 quake on Friday destroyed the commercial fishing harbor of Crescent City, California, a coastal town still recovering from a devastating tsunami in 1964. Although most of the fishing boats were removed in advance, the 198 docking slips that the harbor had provided for boats, enabling the livelihoods of the fishing crews, were lost.

Harbormaster Richard Young said that the harbor is destroyed. “We’re facing not only physical but financial disaster,” he said during a briefing. “Our business activity came to a screeching halt yesterday, and that affects the entire community.” Councilwoman Kelly Schellong said, “This is going to have a trickle-down effect beyond the lost jobs.”

Crescent City’s unemployment rate was 13 percent before Friday’s tsunami destroyed its commerical fishing industry.

The 1964 tsunami that hit Crescent City killed 11, demolished the harbor and heavily damaged large portions of the business district. Although the city subsequently rebuilt, another tsunami again damaged the harbor in 2006. The city was in the midst of reconstructing the harbor when Friday’s tsunami hit. The harbor is surrounded by land and a breakwater built after the 1964 disaster. The tsunami’s huge waves entered through a small opening provided for the entrance and exit of boats.

Lori Dengler, director of the Humboldt Earthquake Education Center, says Friday’s tsunami was one of as many as 38 tsunamis to strike Crescent City within the last 78 years. She calls the city a “tsunami magnet” because of the topography of the ocean floor that contributes to its vulnerability. She also blames the breakwater built after the 1964 tsunami because it traps tsunami waves in the harbor, causing them to boil and churn.

A county supervisor found the view painful on Saturday as she surveyed the wreckage accompanied by state officials. She is hoping they will provide emergency assistance. “We don’t have the financial resources,” she said. “We need money. That’s what it takes to fix things…. Our poor little harbor.”

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bytimothyharvard

Is it time to replace your outdated or worn countertops? If so, you may be in the midst of making the all-important decision about which material you’ll choose to cover those surfaces. While there are certainly many viable options out there, it’s important to take the time to carefully consider the distinct benefits that each of them can provide. If you have yet to consider the Value of having quartz countertops installed in your home , read on to discover four reasons why they make a great choice for any homeowner.

Beautiful

Your countertops account for a large portion of the surface space in your kitchen and bathrooms. This means their designs can affect the overall look and feel of the room. Fortunately, quartz is known for its remarkable beauty and comes in a wide variety of colors, which means you’re sure to find something that matches your preferred style.

Cost-Effective

For many homeowners, cost is an important factor when it comes to choosing countertops for their homes. If you’re keeping an eye on your budget, you should know that quartz countertops in Minneapolis can help you keep costs down. Quartz is generally less costly than granite, which means you can get beautiful countertops for a reasonable price.

Durable

If you’re worried about how long your countertops are going to last, you’ll be happy to know that quartz is one of the most durable countertop materials available. It is just as strong as granite, but homeowners will enjoy the fact that quartz is much less prone to chipping and cracking.

Non-Porous

When you spill wine, juice, or other liquids on a granite surface, you’ll have to worry about it staining the material. In contrast, quartz has the advantage of being a non-porous material. This means that you won’t have to worry about sealing it or be concerned about stains affecting your beautiful countertops.

Good looks, combined with a great price and unmatched durability, make quartz countertops in Minneapolis a smart choice. If you’re ready to experience the beauty of quartz, and learn more about how it can enhance your home, get in touch with the countertop specialists at Granite Unlimited Inc. They’ll be able to conduct a thorough evaluation of your space and help you select the quartz countertop that will best suit your home and allow your style and flair to shine through.

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Australian Parliament hears reply to Budget

Thursday, May 11, 2006

The Australian House of Representatives heard the traditional right-of-reply to the Budget released May 9, from the Australian Labor Party, led by Kim Beazley (Labor, Brand), plus Budget replies from minor parties in the Australian Senate.

While the Budget is politically popular, having as one of its main features significant tax reform, Beazley focused on the omissions in the Budget, such as the failure to address a skills shortage.

Contents

  • 1 Opposition reply
  • 2 Minor parties
    • 2.1 Australian Democrats
  • 3 Australian Greens
  • 4 Family First
  • 5 Sources
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Western Sydney rallies against government’s workplace reforms

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Wikinews Australia has in-depth coverage of this issue: Australian industrial relations legislation, 2005

According to initial estimates by New South Wales police and unions, 30,000 people have rallied at Blacktown Showground in Western Sydney to protest the federal government’s Workchoices workplace reforms. Organisers had expected around 15,000 protesters to attend.

The rally at Blacktown is one of many to be held around Australia today as part of a “National Day of Action” to “protect worker’s rights at work” according to unions.

The Blacktown rally saw masses of truck drivers, construction workers, teachers and police officers carrying banners and flags signalling their discontent at the federal government’s reforms.

Many of the workers were joined by their families, chanting to the federal government “Your workplace changes have to go.”

Speaking to protesters in Western Sydney, John Robertson, secretary of Unions New South Wales said the federal government had stripped away 100 years of worker’s rights.”These laws are direct attacks on hard-working Australians who are trying to pay off a home, provide for their kids’ futures and have a bit of economic security,” Mr Robertson said.

“It’s in the suburbs and regional Australia that the impact of these laws will be felt – stripping away job security, penalty rates, time with family and wage rates.”

The NSW Premier’s department has encouraged state government employees to attend the rallies to show their anger at the workplace reforms. As such, schools are mainly providing supervision today so parents can attend rallies, with many teachers also in attendance.

Employees of Australia Post, a company wholly owned by the federal government, have been warned that unauthorised absences will result in disciplinary action being taken.

Speaking earlier today, Federal Workplace Relations Minister, Kevin Andrews said he expected most workers would not join the protests. “The reality is that most people are not going to do it because they know that we have delivered, as a government, a period of relative prosperity in Australia,” said Mr Andrews.

“Part of the way we have done that has been to have the courage to engage in the reforms so we can meet the challenges of the future.”

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June

21

US President Obama celebrates his first Martin Luther King Jr. Day while in office

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US President Obama celebrates his first Martin Luther King Jr. Day while in office
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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

On Sunday, at a Bapist church originally founded by freed slaves, US President Barack Obama addressed the congregation about the “Dream” of slain civil rights activist Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.—whom Obama credits with paving the way for his 2008 election—and about the importance of hope and faith in his own life.

On Monday, Obama, with his family in tow, served hot lunches at a local Washington soup kitchen—one of several ways America’s first black president planned to pay tribute to the late Dr. King on the federal holiday that honors his legacy and lasting impact upon society.

Later at the White House, Obama will host a gathering consisting of small selected group of African-American seniors and their grandchildren where they will discuss the meaning of the civil rights movement and how it still effects them to this day. Following which, that evening, the Obamas are slated to attend the “Let Freedom Ring” concert at the Kennedy Center. A musical event that will feature gospel artists and choir members from various area churches among other houses of worship.

Another prominent American politician, governor-elect of New Jersey, Chris Christie held a banquet on Monday evening to honor the importance of Dr. King’s message as well. Other commemorations included a march in Seattle where participants rallied for issues in the African-American community.

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June

20

Bodyguard Job Description, Education Requirements And Salary

Bodyguard Job Description, Education Requirements and Salary by Caitlin McGuireHigh-profile individuals rely on professional bodyguards for their security and protection. A bodyguard is not a security guard. At the same time, a security guard is not a bodyguard. They are two different professions.A security guard carry out “low level security” procedures. They provide security at parking lots, shopping centers, or nightclubs. The security level and the risk of people being killed on these places are low. A security guard needs a security license, which can be acquired after completing a basic security course.Also known as close protection officer, a professional bodyguard provides high-level security related to people’s lives that deal with all and any security situation. He is trained in Advanced Weapons Disarming, Anti-Ambush Procedures, and Anti-Terrorism. A professional bodyguard is also taught Immediate Psychology assessment to determine whether the person approaching the client is going to be a threat or not to the client.Job Description and Nature of WorkThe main responsibility of a professional bodyguard is to protect his client from loss of confidential information and serious physical threats like assassination, assault, harassment, kidnapping, and stalking. He is also assigned to assess the security threats to his client and provides necessary security measures.A bodyguard may also perform other duties protection of communication equipments, analysis and assessment of risk, threat and vulnerability, detection of chemicals and explosives, operation of different security measures, as well as mob screening and control. He may also be designate to search certain areas for possible threats and prepare travel routes.Requirements to become a BodyguardBefore you rush out and apply to the next bodyguard job, ask yourself: Do you have at least a high school diploma? Have you attended training that specializes in educating and preparing bodyguards?Generally, a bodyguard must be in perfect physical shape, without pre-existing health conditions. He must have 20/20 vision. A bodyguard must be reliable and trustworthy. He must also have good people skills because the job deals with a lot of people. The psychological state of mind is also important to be able to make quick decisions while protecting your client.A bodyguard who completed a college degree in law enforcement, military or government security intelligence is more likely to get the job. Most bodyguards are former law enforcement or military officers because they have the sufficient training and experience to do the job.Your client’s life is at stake so you will need certain skills for your career as a bodyguard and do a good job. A bodyguard should have broad physical and skills training in strategic defense, use of weapons and firearms, martial arts, first aid and CPR. Driving skills is also an advantage.Salary of a BodyguardThere is no fixed rate for offering bodyguard services, depending on the negotiation between the client and the bodyguard himself. There are other factors that may affect the rate of bodyguards, such as experience, client profile, level of danger, amount of travel required, the range of tasks involved for the position, and others.A bodyguard with 1-4 years of experience may earn from $42,000-$75,000 annually. Obviously, the bodyguards with more experience, skills and training will earn more. An experienced bodyguard may earn as much as $100,000 per year plus bonuses. If you have clients like celebrities, athletes, politicians, and dignitaries, you can ask for higher pay for your service.MyOnlineCriminalJusticeDegree.com is your guide to accredited criminal justice degree programs for Crime Scene Investigation, Police Training, Paralegal Certification, Law Degrees and top online criminal justice schools.Article Source: eArticlesOnline.com

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June

20

Inspectors close Chicago landmark Healthy Food restaurant after finding dead mouse in cooler

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Inspectors close Chicago landmark Healthy Food restaurant after finding dead mouse in cooler
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Saturday, April 2, 2005

Chicago city inspectors closed the landmark Lithuanian restaurant Healthy Food on Thursday, after finding mouse feces on the meat slicer and cutting board, and a dead mouse in the cooler.

The restaurant has operated at 3236 S. Halsted, on the south side of the city in the Bridgeport neighborhood, since the 1930s.

Wikinews reporter David Vasquez placed a call to the restaurant to inquire if they were open. The call was answered by a woman who said, “No, we’re closed. There’s some technical difficulties. I’m sorry. Thank you for calling.” A second phone could be heard ringing in the background.

Streets and Sanitation spokesman Matt Smith told the Chicago Sun-Times, “To reopen, they’re going to have to present us with a revamped game plan for not only rodent control but also housekeeping, they’ll have to make all the corrections that our inspectors point out,” he continued, “and pass a very stringent follow-up inspection.”

Patrons have praised the restaurant’s sauerkraut soup and other dishes over the years. Before it was closed, the restaurant had a lot of traffic from the nearby Cook County Circuit Court. The restaurant was once voted “Best Ethnic Eastern European Restaurant in Chicago”, according to New City.

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June

20

Woman in Buffalo, New York accidentally sets herself on fire

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Woman in Buffalo, New York accidentally sets herself on fire
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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Buffalo, New York —A woman in Buffalo, New York in the United States is in critical condition tonight at Sisters Of Charity Hospital after she accidentally set herself on fire.

The unnamed elderly woman was receiving oxygen for medical problems in her home and lit a cigarette, and the oxygen coming from her mask facilitated the ignition of her clothing, setting her on fire.

Despite her “severe” burns as described by firefighters on radio communications, she was still able to dial the emergency line in the U.S., 911.

In the U.S. only 4% of all residential fires were reportedly caused by smoking materials in 2002. These fires, however, were responsible for 19% of residential fire fatalities and 9% of injuries. The fatality rate due to smoking is nearly four times higher than the overall residential fire rate; injuries are more than twice as likely. Forty percent of all smoking fires start in the bedroom or living room/family room; in 35% of these fires, bedding or upholstered furniture are the items first ignited.

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