November 2011 Archives

Stalemate Over Budget Talk But Time Ticks

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Members of a joint committee found themselves on Sunday that it would be difficult to break the stalemate over $1.2 trillion federal budget deficit deals by the deadline, criticizing each other for their stubbornness about taxation and entitlement spending.

While Democrats said that Republicans had little willingness to compromise on new taxes for revenues, Republican Rep. Jeb Hensarling of Texas, co-chairman of the committee, countered Democrats by saying that the stalemate continued because of the Democrat's inflexibility to accept reduction in Medicare and Social Security, the New York Times said.

The New York Times mentions this to clarify what disputes between Republican and Democrats and frame the conflicts between them over the deficit-reduction talk. The New York Times, illustrates how divided the committee is by quoting members' words from talks on TV.

While the New York Times pays attention to conflicts, the Los Angeles Times look at what kind of deals members have offered in the bipartisan talk.

The Republican had $640 billion a debt-reduction plan on the table. The Los Angeles Times reported. The offer would contain $542 billion spending cut and $98 billion savings generated by lowering interest payments on the national debts.

The Los Angeles Times said that Sen. Democrat John F. Kerry of Massachusetts said Democrats offered $4 trillion reductions on important programs that would likely to stir anger in public.

The New York Time said that the Congressional Budget Office estimated that automatic spending cut would result in 7.8 percent budget cut in domestic programs and 10 percent cut in defense program that considered to be the largest cut if the committee cannot reach the deal.

Peaceful Protesters were arrested in Minnesota

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11 protesters were arrested Thursday for impeding traffic on a bridge near the University of Minnesota.
The protest took place on the bridge at 10th Avenue to demand some actions for jobs and racial equality, the Pioneer Express reported.
Sgt, Bill Palmer said protest organizers notified the police when and where the protest would take place so that the protester anticipated the likelihood of the arrest, according to the Pioneer Express.
at least 30 university students participated in the protest, but there is no information that students were arrested, the Minnesota Daily reported.
The Minnesota Daily said that in the Thursday's afternoon, students, organizers and citizens repeated loudly their agendas, such as an affordable tuition, no cutting spending on education and corporations' avarice, at Northrop Plaza.
Pioneer Express identified that there were at least 40 people and said protesters cried "Up with people" and down with greed."
The Minnesota Daily reported that one of the protesters gathered at Northrop Plaza was holding an American flag that put corporations'' trademarks instead of stars.
The protest on the bridge lasted no more than 30 minutes, The Minnesota Daily said.

Fire Destroyed Commercial Building

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A south Minneapolis commercial building collapsed Thursday morning because of a fire.
Firefighters came to the building around 5:30 a.m. after a Metro Transit bus driver notified the fire, the Star Tribune reported.
The fire in the commercial building North American Carrousel Co. on 27th Street and 28th Avenue spread and emitted other chemicals so that firefighters struggled with getting inside, reported. said that a spokeswoman for Centerpoint Energy said the cause of the fire was believed to be natural gas.
The company has dedicated to games and rides for renaissance festivals nationwide, according to myFOX9.
Due to Thursday's cold temperature, the building destroyed by the fire gave shiny surface caused by ice, and as firefighters continued to melt down the ice, only visible inventory was huge body of a horse, according to the Star Tribune.

Wall Steet Protesters Never Give Up

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While Zuccotti Park regained peace after Wall Street protesters were evicted, The Wall Street protesters planned Thursday new demonstrations.
Even though police retained barricades to prevent protesters from conducting more aggressive protests on Wall Street and Zuccotti Park, they would plan to start protests on Wall Street and to meet in the park again, the Wall Street Journal reported.
City officials said that it would cost $3 million to keep police present to maintain safety at Zuccotti Park a month if protesters conduct demonstration in the park, the New York Time reported.
The New York Times said that Marc La Vorgna, a spokesman for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said barricades was once removed two weeks ago but reinstalled because of concerns that protesters might show up again.
Wall Street Journal said protesters at the park were aggressive. On Wednesday, police arrested 29-year-old Bronx man Nkrumah Tinsley on charge of uttering threats in a violent way.
The Wall Street Journal said that anti-rich movement on Wall Street has had impact on Wall Street and a few areas like Zuccotti Park, but has not impeded commuters and city's operations.

London respond to Zuccotti Park incident

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London city officials said Tuesday that anti-capitalist protesters living in camps outside St. Paul's Cathedral would face legal actions that would result in removing the camps.

Authorities in the cathedral and the City of London Corporation, the London city governing body, initiated legal actions that postponed two weeks ago and denied that the actions were not motivated by eviction taken place in Zuccotti Park where Occupy Wall Street protesters camped, the Washington Post reported.

What motivated authorities to restart the legal actions were unclear but the decisions might be made under necessity of bringing back to normal that is shared by opponents of Occupy Wall Street, according to the New York Times.

Stimulated by the news about Zuccotti Park eviction and restart of legal actions, London protesters marched outside U.S. embassy to protest violent actions taken place at Occupy Wall Street and to request a meeting with an ambassador, Time reported.

The Washington Post said the London protest started on Oct. 15, and the failure to solve the protest led to resignations of both cathedral's dean and senior priest.

200 protesters lived in tents near the cathedral, and having oatmeal and a cup of coffee became routine for many of those, New York Times said.

Gold is not here, but in Asian-Pacific

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The United States and eight Asian-Pacific nations reached Saturday a broad agreement that would facilitate liberalization of trade among the countries.

The agreement is called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). It is designed to remove tariffs to facilitate free-trade between the United States and Asian-Pacific countries.

One of the focal points in the agreement that media frame is a relationship between the United States and China. While the United States attempted to attract Asian-Pacific nations by saying that the United States would keep its economic primacy, President Hu Jintao competed the vision by saying that China would transform into an innovative country that has potential and capital, the Washington Post reported.

The Washing Post said that China must abide by rules, but does not clearly mention what the rules are, but the New York Times reported what rules the United States asked China to follow. It said that Obama said China would have to adjust their currency rate accordingly and improve intellectual property rights.

While both companies mainly focus on China, The New York Times features different angles. It said that the agreement is important for the United States in term of political debates and 2012 re-election because GOP presidential candidates have criticized Obama through bashing economic relationship between the United States and China. Also, in the meeting, security concerns about Iran's nuclear program rose.

On the other hand, the Wall Street Journal deals with what the agreement means to Japan, which is not covered by the Washington Post and the New York Times. The agreement is beneficial for export-oriented countries like Japan because the pact would facilitate competition in the sector of electronics and auto companies, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Liberation of trade does not necessarily mean that it generates benefits for Japan. Japanese opponents of TPP said that liberation of trade would have impacts on agriculture and universal health insurance, the Wall Street Journal reported.

However, the Wall Street Journal shows to what extent agriculture contributes to the economy. It said that Agriculture only occupies 1.4 percent of the economy while manufactures occupy 20 percents. It costs $60 billion for the Japanese government to protect farmers from overseas agricultural products through tariffs and other policies.

Go Big, Germany.

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Meanwhile Greece and Italy, members of the European Unions, passes austerity measures to overcome economic crisis, Germany, the largest economy in Europe, decided Friday that they would pursue more spending.

Germany would borrow €26.1 billion ($35.5 billion) next year, which is nearly 16 percent increase as compare with borrowing this year, Bloomberg reported.

Despite an economic slowdown, Germany can focus on spending thanks to its own domestic policies and an economic stability. In term of growth of gross domestic product, Germany would see nearly 1 percent growth, which is 2 percent lower than this year, but Germany has maintained 7 percent unemployment rate and increased revenue from taxation, privatizations and labor cost cut from public sectors, the Wall Street Journal reported.

German government would use the borrowing to improve infrastructures and invest in efficient energy technology that the government has allocated €26.9 billion, according to Bloomberg.

Chancellor Angela Merkel would include several social programs in order to gain political trusts among constituencies. Those social programs would be a subsidy for parents and minimum wages that she once opposed, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Bloomberg said the Germany would spend up to nearly €307 billion in 2012, which is same amount as 2011.

Not all about watching who wins and loses

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In the middle of a notable Penn State Jon Paterno's scandal of sexual abuse, a Saturday college football game between Penn State and Nebraska came as unusual.

It was the striking moment that both team gathered in the middle of the field, kneed and listened to Nebraska running back coach Ron Brown's short speech, The Washington Post reported.

Even though Paterno's scandal came to the public, not all fun was disappointed by it. Thousands of students came to the stadium with an appearance that was alike Paterno and greeted the quarterback coach and Joe's son Jay Paterno when he came out from a bus, according to the New York Times.

Besides the support for the Jon Paterno, people who came to the stadium also could observe supports for prevention for child abuse. The stadium covered with blue, which is a symbolic color for prevention for child-abuse, and more than $20,000 was donated for the prevention, according to the Washington Post.

A solo protest was happening outside the stadium. A 34-year-old Penn State graduate John Matko, standing near an entrance gate, protested because he could not stand that children were abused, The New York Times reported.

Joe Paterno had dedicated himself to Penn State as head coach since 1965, and it was for the first time for Penn State that they played a game without him, the New York Times reported.

The stronger cannot always prey upon the weaker

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The Badgers gained triumph over the Gopher by 3-1 on Friday night at the Kohl Center in Madison, taking all goals in the second period with tight defense.

Minnesota Daily said the key point of the game would be which defense is better because both team only had five chances to shot in the first period.

However, in the second period, the game moved in favor of the Badgers. The team's first and third goals were attributed to the Gopher's defense breakdown, StarTribune said. The Badgers brought game to 3-0 only on eight shots.

Defense battle came to the third period again. Minnesota daily said the Gopher broke up the shutout by 3-1 thanks to Jake Hansen, but there were several opportunities to score more in the period.

StarTribune said the Gopher has ranked national No. 1 hockey team in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) series that scores 4.8 goals per game, and the Badgers was out of the rank.

Gophers coach Don Lucia said that the game was to some extent boring, and the game was lacking with contact, StarTribune reported.

Christopher & Banks Corp Friday made a decision that it would close its retail stores up to 100 nationwide to increase profits, which would affect 1,000 of its workers.

The company's sales declined five percent, and it struggled with a loss of $13 million between April and August, Minnesota Public Radio news reported.

Looking at the company's management biannually, the company, even though it increased its profit up to $3.8 million, has suffered from the loss of $ 11.1 million, according to the StarTribune.

StarTribune said the decision came within two weeks after a hedge fund Southpoint Capital Advisors gained a nearly 5.6 percent, or 2 million, share of the apparel company in market. Christopher & Banks Corp would have to bear additional $5 million to $7 million losses for severance payment and termination of leases.

MPR said the apparel company has not decided to which stores would be closed, but the closures will end before February 2012.

Greek parties are unified to overcome the economic crisis

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Greek leaders agreed Sunday to form a new unified government after the resignation of Prime Minister George Papandreou.

The Sacramento Bee reported that the unified government is a traditional government, but does not define a traditional government.

The New York Times does not say that the unified government is traditional. It said that the current Greek party system was a product of a civil war between right and left in late 1940s and increased political ideological gap between left and right. The two-party system had continued for more than 40 years after the end of military dictatorship, but Sunday' decision would take Greek to uncharted waters.

The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times deal with who is going to lead the new government. They say that Lucas Papademos, a former governor in the Bank of Greece and a former vice president in European Central Bank, is believed to be a possible leader.

The Wall Street Journal said that Papandreou said that he has considered Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos as a temporary prime minister in the unified government.

The Los Angeles Times, using an anonymous source, said that besides Papademos, European ombudsman Nikiforso Diamantouros and independent deputy Elsa Papadimitriou are other possible candidates of leaders of the news government, but I wonder using the source is appropriate when the news is really sensitive.

The New York Times, the Sacramento Bee and the Los Angeles Times focus on conflicts between the Panhellenic Socialist Movement and the New Democracy party, reactions from both leaders and background of how the unified government emerged.

However, the Wall Street Journal reports what the unified government means for the Greek future. It said that if Venizelos is in charge of forming the new government, he would urge Parliament to approve the bailout program by creditors.

Military attack killed Alfronso Cano, 63-year-old leader of a left-group called FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia), Friday.

His real name is Guillermo Leon Saenz who was born in Bogota, Colombia, in 1948 and dedicated himself to studying anthropology and law at a well-known university located in the capital, the BBC News reported.

The FARC was a peasant army inspired by communism and aimed at diminishing a gap between rich and poor, Reuters reported.

According to Reuters, during his university life, he expanded his interests in political theory and history and became the leader of the Communist Party's youth group,

BBC News said his friend from the university said that Cano leaned to the FARC as he realized that military power was a key factor of overturning capitalism. The BBC News said that he used Alfonso Cano as his name when he joined in the group.

What he did in the group was that he held peace talk in Venezuela in 1991 and Mexico in 1992, but both failed, the Washington Post said. Cano became leader of the FARC after the FARC's leader Manuel "Sureshot" Marulanda died in 2008.

The Washington Post reported that Cano had been convicted 12 times and 142 warrant of arrest for crimes related to kidnapping, homicide and rebellion.

A well-known urologist David C. Utz who worked at the Mayo Clinic died 87 on Oct.30 at his home in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Dr. Utz was an internationally recognized urologist because he incorporated various techniques in urologic surgeon and facilitated ideas of uro-oncological, the Post-Bulletin reported.

The Star Tribune reported that former president Ronald Reagan, members of Supreme Court and some celebrities came to Dr. Utz for surgeons.

He earned his international reputation not only through introducing the concepts and various techniques but also through his publications. The Post-Bulletin said that he published more than 140 of medical literature and dealt with nearly 30 abstracts and editorials, so that he was invited to medical centers as a visiting professor all over the world

According to the Star Tribune, one of the biggest achievements during his life would be that he operated a prostate surgery that any doctor never attempted, which created the bedrocks of the world's largest database of prostate surgery.

Sound effect maker Tom Keith died 64.

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64-year-old St.Paul native Tom Keith, well-known for a radio sound effect maker, died of a heart attack Oct. 30 at his Woodbury home.

According to the Star Tribune, Garrison Keillor, who had known Keith for more than 30 years, said that Keith, a week later he finish his last performance at St.Paul's Fitzgerald Theater on Oct. 22, dealt with shortness of breath but postponed going to see a doctor.

The Pioneer Express said that , Dale Connelly, who co-hosted "Morning Show" with Keith, said that he noticed Oct.27 that Keith' breath was not right when they held a workshop at St. Olaf College.

Tim Russell, who had worked with Keith in a show called "Prairie Home Companion," said that Keith was so skilled at making sound effects with objects and rare a job that it would be hard to replace, the Pioneer Express reported.

He was born in West St. Paul and pursued his career in broad casting companies after he finished serving the Marines for four years and graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1972, the Star Tribune reported.

Hillary Clinton's mother Dorothy Rodham died Tuesday.

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Dorothy Rodham, a mother of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, died at 92 Tuesday in Washington.

Clinton said that Rodham dedicated herself to teaching her children the importance of having determination and calmness and to encouraging them to be more intellectual, the New York Times reported.

Rodham was born in Chicago on June 4,1919, but eight years later, Rodham and her young sister were send to their grandparents who lived in California after their parents divorced in 1927, the Chicago Tribune said. Rodham, mistreated by her grandparents, lived in another family as a nanny and attended Alhambra high school.

According to the New York Times, Rodham returned to Chicago because her mother's new husband promised that she would pay Rodham's tuitions for college to live, but Rodham noticed that her mother wanted to keep her as a housekeeper. it is reported by the New York Times that she married Hugh Ellsworth Rodham and gave birth in suburban of Chicago where they moved in.

President Obama said that Rodham would be satisfied with her life because she could see her daughter engaging in a honorable position in the United States, the Chicago Tribune reported.

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