April 26, 2009

Man dies after being swept into river

An urban explorer died Sunday after exploring a tunnel and being swept into the Mississippi River near the Lake Street bridge in St. Paul, reported the Star Tribune.

Ian William Talty, 30, of Woodbury, died despite an intense rescue attempt by St. Paul police officer and several students from the nearby University of St. Thomas, said St. Paul Fire Marshal Steve Zaccard, reported the Star Tribune.

"He was a good dad," Nicole Talty, Ian's wife, said Sunday reported Kare-11 TV. She said her husband always went out on Sunday mornings and always brought home "amazing" pictures.

Talty and his companion, Nicholas Breid, were exploring and photographing the bluffside tunnel when it filled with rainwater during a thunderstorm.

Bried, 29, swam to shore and survived, and was reported to have no injuries. Talty's cries for help were heard by the St. Thomas rowing club, who immediately called 911.

Three University of St. Thomas students then jumped into a boat with a member of the Minneapolis rowing club and went out onto the river to search for Talty, and were soon joined by a St. Paul police officer in a boat, according to the Star Tribune.

They found Talty's body some 500 yards south down river.

"We've been preaching for years to stay out of the caves and tunnels along the Mississippi," Zaccard said. He also said carbon monoxide poisoning is a potential threat too. "The message is to stay out of the tunnels and caves," he said

Chrysler wins union concessions

The United Auto Workers said Sunday that they had reached a tenative agreement over concessions in their contract with Chrysler LLC, CNN reported on Sunday.

The union said in a statement that an agreement had been made between Chrysler, Fiat, and the Treasury Department. The move represents an important step for the automanufacturer in avoiding bankruptcy.

The union said the deal includes modifications to the their 2007 collective bargaining agreement and the trust program dedicated to retiree health benefits, although they did not specify them, reported CNN.

This helps Chrysler move closer to making an alliance with Italy's Fiat Group, crucial to their survival. They had to meet the thursday deadline to gain concessions from their unions and debtholders, reported the Star Tribune.

"We commend the UAW's leadership for their endless determination and perseverance in reaching this tentative agreement especially during these unprecedented economic circumstances that plague the automotive industry," Al Iacobelli, Chrysler's chief labor negotiator and vice president of employee relations, said in a statement, reported CNN.

Chrysler still has two critical deals to make by the deadline, reported CNN.

CNN: http://money.cnn.com/2009/04/26/autos/chrysler/index.htm
Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/business/43748167.html?elr=KArksLckD8EQDUoaEyqyP4O:DW3ckUiD3aPc:_Yyc:aUac8HEaDiaMDCinchO7DU

World 'well prepared' for virus

A top UN Chief said Sunday that the international community is more than prepared for the potential threat of the new swine flu virus, reported the BBC.

While the UN warned that the outbreak could become an epidemic, Dr. Keiji Fukuda said the world stocks of anti-virals are high after years of preparing for bird flu, reported the BBC.

Canada became the newest country to announce cases of the flu, alongside 80 deaths in Mexico and 20 cases in the U.S, according to the BBC.

U.S. health officials declared a public health emergency on Sunday because of the rising cases of the swine flu, as investigators attempt to figure out its path, reported the New York Times.

“We are seeing more cases of swine flu,” Dr. Richard Besser, acting director of the Centers for Disease Control, said in a news conference in Washington, reported the New York Times.. “We expect to see more cases of swine flu. As we continue to look for cases, I expect we’re going to find them.”

Currently, there are no deaths from the swine flue in the U.S., and only one confirmed infected person has been hospitalized, officials said, reported the New York Times.

Airports in Asia and Latin America have begun screening passengers for symptoms of the virus, reported the BBC.

According to the BBC, there are no vaccines for the new strain as of yet, but there are anitviral medications that can be used to treat severe cases.

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8019566.stm
New York TImes: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/27/world/27flu.html?_r=1&ref=world

Vikings fill multiple needs with first-round draft picks

The Minnesota Vikings chose Percy Harvin, a wide receiver from Florida, at No. 22 in the NFL Draft on Saturday, reported the Star Tribune.

They also chose offensive tackle Phil Loadholt with the 54th pick in the second round. The former Oklahoma player will join Bryant McKinnie at 6 foot 8, 330-plus pound tackle to give the Vikings one of the biggests set of tackles in the NFL, according to the Pioneer Press.

Coach Brad Childress and player personnel vice president Rick Spielman both believe their first draft day could not have gone any better, reported the Pioneer Press.

Harvin was one of the most explosive playmakers in college football last season, and by many considered to be a top-10 pick. Although there were issues around his character and behavior that concerned many teams, the Vikings believe in Harvin, reported the Pioneer Press.

"We felt comfortable enough that he was just too explosive of a playmaker and too hard to pass up where we were picking," Spielman said, according to the Pioneer Press.

With the first day moves, the Vikings not only fill their two most important needs, but they also land a player capable of scoring touchdowns and selling tickets, reported the Pioneer Press.

Loadholt, a sound choice and addition to the team, will have every opportunity to compete for a starting position, while Harvin is expected to step in and be a major threat right away, reported the Star Tribune.

"He's going to really help our team, and we're looking forward to it," Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said. "We have to strike when the iron is hot, and I think now is the time to do it. We're very happy to be able to pick [him] at this time."

Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/sports/vikings/43702287.html?page=2&c=y
Pioneer Press: http://www.twincities.com/ci_12230306?source=most_viewed

Police in riot gear respond to Dinkytown block party

Hundreds of students became disorderly Saturday night at a block party in Dinkytown near the University of Minnesota campus, bringing police in riot gear to subdue the fray, reported the Star Tribune.

Six people were arrested as police used tear gas, pepper spray, and foam bullets to disperse a massive crowd that had gathered on 7th Street and between 14th and 13th Avenues SE where at bonfire had been started in the street, according to the Star Tribune.

“This is a lot of drunk college students that are taking advantage of a good situation,” Garcia said about Spring Jam, reported the Minnesota Daily. “I think they might have gotten the message tonight.”

Students say the block party was associated with the University of Minnesota's Spring Jam celebrations, reported the Pioneer Press.

The crowd grew to over 500 people throughout the night with more than 60 officers responding to the call, reported the Star Tribune.

After their initial arrival and attempt at dispersing the crowd, the students responded by throwing beer bottles and rocks at the police, reported the Minnesota Daily.

No serious injuries were reported, according to the Pioneer Press.

“Usually when that many people get together, something stupid is going to happen,” Erik Donley, a resident of the 1400 block of Seventh St., said.

Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/local/43707982.html?elr=KArksLckD8EQDUoaEyqyP4O:DW3ckUiD3aPc:_Yyc:aUnciaec8O7EyUsl
Pioneer Press: http://www.twincities.com/allheadlines/ci_12232644
Minnesota Daily: http://www.mndaily.com/2009/04/26/students-riot-dinkytown

April 20, 2009

Analysis: Records/CAR

I dont really understand this topic or how to know to analyze this. I dont think we talked about this in class. And the www.nicar.org website, I cant find the 'Extra! Extra!' link. Im unsure of how to do this.

April 19, 2009

Former C.I.A. chief criticizes Obama

Former C.I.A. Chief Gen. Michael V. Hayden, director during the last two years of the recent Bush Administration, heavily criticized President Barack Obama on Sunday for his release of four Bush-era memos, reported the New York Times.

Hayden said the release of the memos, which detailed intense interrogation practices, would hinder the C.I.A.'s ability to pursue terrorists in the future.

"What we have described for our enemies in the midst of a war are the outer limits that any American would ever go to in terms of interrogating an al Qaeda terrorist. That's very valuable information," Hayden said during an appearance on "Fox News Sunday, reported CNN.

The memos discussed harsh techniques such as waterboarding from 2002 to 2005. In 2008, Hayden told a congressional committee that the practice had been dropped in 2006 and was likely done illegally when it had been, according the New York Times.

The Obama administration outlawed harsh interrogations early in their administration and ordered the C.I.A.’s secret prisons closed on his second day in office. President Barack Obama had said that the practice of so-called “enhanced interrogation techniques” amounted to a dark chapter in American history, reported the New York Times.

"By taking [certain] techniques off the table, we have made it more difficult -- in a whole host of circumstances I can imagine -- for CIA officers to defend the nation," Hayden said.

New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/20/us/politics/20CIA.html?ref=us
CNN: http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/19/cia.torture.chief/index.html

Hemisphere's leaders see signs of hope

The leader's of the western hemisphere's nations concluded a two day summit Sunday, under the excitement of the new the American president, reported the New York Times.

After years of disagreement and difficulty with the U.S., the summit meeting declared a time of new and better relations in the region, reported the New York Times.

The BBC reported that the summit ended on a positive note, despite disagreement on a joint declaration and issues with the U.S. such as the exclusion of Cuba from the meeting.

“There was a spirit of good will that went way beyond the wildest dreams of any one of us,” Patrick Manning, the prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago, said Sunday, reported the New York Times.

President Barack Obama said that the summit signified a new start to U.S. relations with its neighbors and that he saw positive signs with Cuba and Venezuela, reported the BBC.

Leaders from both Brazil and Venezuela said they hoped for better interactions with the U.S., as Brazilian President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva said he saw "potential positive signs" between the US and Cuba and Venezuela, according to the BBC.

"We have a different focus obviously, but we are willing, we have the political will to work together," Reuters news agency reported Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as saying, according to the BBC.

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/8007305.stm
New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/20/world/americas/20prexy.html?hpw

Italy agrees to take in migrants

Italy agreed on Sunday to take in 140 migrants off the deck of a Turkish-owned cargo ship that had rescued them in the Mediterranean Sea, reported the New York Times.

The acceptance ends a four day diplomatic stand-off between Italy and Malta. Rome had intially said that ship was in Matlese search and rescue area and that they should take them in, according to the BBC.

Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said Italy was taking in the migrants for "humanitarian reasons", reported the BBC. Frattini made sure to insist the actions did not set a precedent.

“Malta should have taken them in,” Mr. Frattini was quoted as saying on state television, according to The Associated Press, reported the New York Times.

The migrants were initially rescued off the coast of the Italian island of Lampedusa after their boats got into trouble because of rough seas, reported the BBC.

“Thank God, thank God, the situation is now resolved,” said Laura Boldrini, a spokeswoman in Rome for the commissioner’s office, reported the New York Times.

The New York Times also reports that one woman aboard, who was pregnant, died. All of the migrants had traveled from Africa.

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8007379.stm
New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/20/world/europe/20migrants.html?_r=1&ref=world

St. Paul woman victim of stolen car crash

Shoua Vang of St. Paul died Saturday night after her car collided with a stolen vehicle at the Larpeunter Avenue exit off Interstate-35E in St. Paul, reported the Star Tribune.

Vang, 48, was hit by a suspect fleeing Roseville Police in a stolen Chrysler just after 7 p.m. She was taken to Regions Hospital where she was pronounced dead upon arriving, reported the Pioneer Press.

Vang's male companion, who was in the car with her, was listed as in the serious condition. The suspect and an 8-year-old boy riding with him had only minor injuries, according to the Star Tribune.

Tito Fonzio Campbell, 33, of Roseville, was arrested at the scene of the accident, according to Roseville police. He is being held on suspicion of criminal vehicular homicide.

Roseville Police said they had called off their chase of the suspect and had not been pursuing him before the crash occured, according to the Pioneer Press.

Authorities estimated that Campbell was driving 90 miles per hour on Hwy. 36 when he crashed into Vang.

After spotting the stolen Chrysler 300M, a police officer put on his lights and pursued the vehicle, when it started to drive recklessly. At that point, "the officer immediately discontinued the pursuit due to the suspect's aggressive and dangerous driving," according to Roseville police, reported the Pioneer Press.

Campbell has extensive criminal history, such as convictions for carrying a pistol without a permit, attempted robbery and driving after revocation, according to the Pioneer Press.

Pioneer Press: http://www.twincities.com/allheadlines/ci_12175227
Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/local/43252917.html?elr=KArksLckD8EQDUoaEyqyP4O:DW3ckUiD3aPc:_Yyc:aUUsZ

Perkins pitches Twins to win

Minnesota Twins pitcher Glenn Perkins led the team to a 3-1 victory at the Metrodome Sunday against the Los Angeles Angels, reported the Star Tribune.

Perkins helped the Twins cap a three-game series sweep of the Angels even a big bruise on his thigh after being hit by Bobby Adreu's line drive, reported the Pioneer Press.

The ball hit Perkins at more than 100-mph, bouncing of his leg and to third baseman Brendan Harris who was able to pick it up and throw Adreu out at first base.

After walking around the mound gingerly, Perkins pitched and completed 8 innings, allowing only 1 run and four hits, according to the Star Tribune.

"Trying to get them to hit my pitches, and they weren't able to do it," Perkins said, reported the Star Tribune. "That's what I try to do every time: Be efficient and get deep into a game, and right now it's working out."

After losing three out of four games in Toronto, the Twins now look confident with Boston and Cleveland ahead on the schedule, reported the Pioneer Press.

"I came down and sat next to (Francisco Liriano) after the third inning. I struck three guys out on sliders, and I said, 'Man, I feel like I'm you now, Frankie — get to two strikes and you just keep throwing sliders until they swing and miss,' " Perkins said, according to the Pioneer Press. "And he goes, 'Works, man.' "

Perkins is now 1-1 and the Twins 7-7, a game out of first place in the AL Central Division.

Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/sports/twins/43251907.html?elr=KArksLckD8EQDUoaEyqyP4O:DW3ckUiD3aPc:_Yyc:aUycaEacyU
Pioneer Press: http://www.twincities.com/allheadlines/ci_12178783?nclick_check=1

April 11, 2009

Analysis: Diversity

Analysis: Diversity
A Google Whiz Searches for His Place on Earth (New York Times)

This is story done by the New York Times about a young Indian immigrant expert engineer who lives, works and is a key member Google engineering team in America, but who is forced to live in Canada because his wife is not being granted an American work visa. Its a piece in their section of the newest immigrants and their impact. I think this piece moves past and beyond stereotype profoundly. Without blatantly stating it, the story is definitely siding on the side of Sanjay (the immigrant) and the problems with the visa extensions by the government. It also seemed to transcend stereotypes by making clear his exceptional ability and skill. If anything,it emphasized the absurdity of any kind of discrimination or stereotype. It discussed moreso the issues with him and his wife having such difficulties and focusing on the issue of why they weren't being treated like anyone else. The story detailed several things I didnt know much about, such as the policy and difficulting of getting the work visas and permission to be in America, especially for such capable people, and the importance of foreign born people to the technology industry, and many industries. The article did this mostly through facts and data on the growing number and scale of importance of immigrants and foreign born persons to industries and the economy. "Google and other big companies say the Chinese, Indian, Russian and other immigrant technologists have transformed the industry, creating wealth and jobs." Overall, I though this peice exemplified a good diversity story.

New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/12/business/12immig.html?hp

Somali pirates seize boat with crew of 16

Somali pirates hijacked a tugboat Saturday with a crew of 16 in the Gulf of Aden, reported the BBC.

The pirates seized the Italian tugboat with 10 Italians on board while focus still remains on the American catpain Richard Phillips who is being held by pirates on a lifeboat flanked by naval warships, reported the New York Times.

The BBC reported that the pirates holding Philips have warned that using force to resuce the captain would result in 'disaster'.

"This incident shows the pirates are becoming more daring and violent,"Andrew Mwangura, of the Mombasa-based East African Seafarers’ Assistance Programme, told Reuters in a telephone interview, reported the New York Times.

The American captain is being held hundres of miles of the Somali coast by four pirates as U.S. and other naval ships make their way to the area.

In other developments, a frenchman and two pirates were killed Friday in a French rescue operation for another vessel captured off the Somalia coast. The BBC reports that four others, including a child, were freed from the yacht.

Reports from the US say the pirates are demanding a $2 million ransom for his safe release.

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/7994980.stm
NY Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/12/world/africa/12somalia.html?hp

April 10, 2009

Obama Sees ‘Glimmers of Hope’ for the Economy

President Barack Obama said Friday that he sees 'glimmers of hope' of in the U.S. economy, reported the BBC.

Obama spoke after a meeting with his top economic advisers, and along with hope, he cautioned that the economic system is still under a 'severe strain', reported the BBC.

“You will be seeing additional actions by the administration,” Obama said after the meeting Friday, reported the New York Times.

The BBC reports that Obama said he and his team had discussed the stability of the financial system, the housing market and their plans to help clear the bank's books of bad assets.

The New York Times reported that there were indications of growing tension between the Obama administration and the nation's banks over the next steps of financial rescue.

"If we stick with it, if we don't flinch in the face of some difficulties, then I feel absolutely convinced that we are going to get this economy back on track,"Obama said, reported the BBC.

Obama referenced the increase in loans to small businesses, tax cut checks being distributed, and the new infrastructure and energy projects being started a signs of hope for the economy, according to the BBC.

"We still have a lot of work to do, and over the next several weeks you'll be seeing additional actions by the administration," Obama said.

BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7994186.stm
NY Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/11/business/economy/11bank.html?_r=1&hp

Eagan man charged in vicious Burnsville stabbings

An Eagan man was charged Friday with assault and attempted murder in connection with stabbings of a Burnsville man and woman earlier this week, reported the Star Tribune.

The Dakota County attorney's office charged Taylor Pass, 18, with stabbing a woman multiple times in the chest and a man in the neck and back at a townhome in Burnsville Tuesday night, reported the Pioneer Press.

The teen faces two counts of attempted murder, one count of first-degree assault, and two counts of second degree assault. Possible motives remain unclear at the moment, according to the Pioneer Press.

Pass' bail was set at $500,000 without conditions, or $250,000 with various conditions: he refrain from drug and alcohol use and that he avoid the town home where the crime took place, reported the Pioneer Press.

The Star Tribune reports that the criminal complaint says that Pass broke his knife when he stabbed the man and woman, and then proceeded to get another one and continue attacking them.

Tina SanRoman, 35, and Odai Al-Refo, 24, were identified as the victims. SanRoman is in critical condition and Al-Refo is in stable condition at Hennepin County Medical Center, reported the Star Tribune.

"Their status is still fluid, your honor," said Assistant County Attorney Shirley Leko, according to the Pioneer Press. "They're in very grave condition at this point."

The Pioneer Press reports that SanRoman and Al-Refo were acquainted with Pass, who Savage Police apprehended within 20 minutes of the stabbings.

Pass is being held at the Dakota County Jail in Hastings. May 4 is set for his next court date.

Pioneer Press: http://www.twincities.com/allheadlines/ci_12115826
Star Tribune: http://www.startribune.com/local/42805982.html?elr=KArksLckD8EQDUoaEyqyP4O:DW3ckUiD3aPc:_Yyc:aUUs