Paleontologists reaffirm the cause of dino extinction

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Paleontologists reaffirm the cause of dino extinction

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A group of 41 paleontologists and researchers reaffirmed the cause of dinosaur extinction. The research team concluded that a giant asteroid killed dinosaurs over 65 million years ago. The asteroid crashed into Yucatán, Mexico creating the Chicxulub crater. Their report was published Friday in the academic journal Science.

In 1980, Louis Alvarez and son, Walter, had published a paper stating that an asteroid had killed the dinosaurs. The Chicxulub crater was also discovered in Mexico at approximately that same time, therefore the theory gained scientific acceptance. More recent explanations of the cause of dinosaur’s extinction included that perhaps volcanic eruptions on Deccan traps or multiple asteroid crashes ended the dinosaurs’ existence.

The team performed chemical analyses of soil and fossil samples, where a high concentration of iridium (which is commonly found in asteroids and meteors) was found, which dated back to the approximate time of the asteroid crash.

The asteroid measured approximately 7.5 miles wide, and hit with an impact of one billion times the force of the Hiroshima atomic bomb. The impact would have immediately killed all animals and plant life within the radius of half of a continent. With such an impact, debris would have flown into the air and then fallen back into the atmosphere with the force of a ballistic missile.

The crash of this asteroid into the earth would have also caused the equivalent of the heat of ten noonday suns, which would have burned the skin or feathers of dinosaurs, and created wildfires on any plant life which had survived to that point. The crash would have also triggered massive earthquakes and tsunamis, possibly causing parts of continents to fall into the ocean.

The area of Yucatán which the asteroid struck had also been rich in sulfur, which was blasted out of the earth and into the sky, where it would have mixed with water vapors, creating clouds that rained sulfuric acid, and which would block out the sun for approximately a decade.

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Chicxulub crater Image: NASA.

Gravity map of Chicxulub crater Image: NASA.

Impact of the Chicxulub crater Image: NASA.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Paleontologists_reaffirm_the_cause_of_dino_extinction&oldid=3853452”

GitHub blocks public access to youtube-dl after RIAA issues DMCA notice

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GitHub blocks public access to youtube-dl after RIAA issues DMCA notice
This article mentions the Wikimedia Foundation, one of its projects, or people related to it. Wikinews is a project of the Wikimedia Foundation.

Monday, October 26, 2020

On Friday, code hosting and sharing website GitHub blocked the public access to youtube-dl, a software which can download videos from the internet via the command-line. The blockade came after GitHub received a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) take-down notice from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). After stripping the metadata from the notice, GitHub published the take-down notice on their site.

Initially started in July 2008 by Ricardo Garcia, youtube-dl is a script written in Python which can download videos from multiple websites including YouTube, LiveLeak and Vimeo. youtube-dl is a FLOSS software and is under public domain. Currently, the repository on GitHub is locked for viewers other than maintainers of the project.

RIAA’s DMCA notice alleged the script’s purpose of existence was to “circumvent the technological protection measures used by authorized streaming services such as YouTube” and “reproduce and distribute music videos and sound recordings owned by our member companies without authorization for such use”.

youtube-dl has multiple unit tests in its source code, which test whether the software works in different circumstances or not. Some of the tests include checking if the script can download Creative Commons licensed videos, videos which did not have square pixels, videos with no age restriction, “offensive to some audiences” per YouTube community and age-restricted videos. One of the tests included the URL of some copyrighted songs. Citing this test, RIAA’s take-down notice claimed “comments in the youtube-dl source code make clear that the source code was designed and is marketed for the purpose of circumventing YouTube’s technological measures”.

RIAA’s notice published by GitHub alleged violation of 17 U.S. Code § 1201 Circumvention of copyright protection systems which says “No person shall circumvent a technological measure that effectively controls access to a work protected under this title”. RIAA listed a number of forks of youtube-dl and requested GitHub via the notice they all be made inaccessible.

The notice did not list any incident of anyone using youtube-dl to download or share copyrighted material, nor mention any damages that actually occurred. Unremarked by the notice, YouTube allows videos to be licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license. When a copyright holder chooses to release their work, be it a photograph, a video, or audio, under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license, they allow everyone to freely own, share or modify the work as long as the reusers properly attribute the author of the work. YouTube also hosts many audio and video recordings in the public domain which can be used for any purpose without any restrictions.

youtube-dl is used by thousands of people around the world. Multiple Creative Commons-licensed and public domain videos on Wikimedia Commons are uploaded via a tool called video2commons, which relies on youtube-dl to download media. youtube-dl also lets users download videos from LiveLeak — a video-sharing platform for citizen journalism. Videos downloaded using youtube-dl are also used for the purpose of fair use, or for evidence.

youtube-dl comes with a small JavaScript interpreter where it acts as a web-browser would behave while receiving video data from the server. The script has “extractors” for various websites to handle videos from different sources. Whenever something is displayed on the user’s screen, the device has a copy of that content. Web browsers “download” data while surfing the web, though most of it is not persistent on the device. It is possible to download copyrighted photos by using a web-browser. The way the world wide web works, there are no technological prevention measures to prevent recording and sharing of content such as RIAA talks about in the notice. Photos and texts can be downloaded by taking screenshots, videos by screen recording tools, and audio by recording on a tape if not an audio recording software.

Multiple users expressed their disappointment on Twitter and Internet Relay Chat. One of the users said “this is yet another example of why we should use git as it was intended, as a distributed network, rather than rely on one single proprietary server”. Git is decentralised version-tracking software which is used by a large number of software companies and projects. It is possible to host one’s own git server for software development. While Microsoft’s GitHub is a centralised git server, development of software using git does not require a GitHub account.

Soon after the public access to the repository was locked, multiple users started sharing the source code via self-hosted git servers, Tor sites and via the Torrent protocol leading to a Streisand effect. Streisand effect is when a measure to censor information causes further spread of that information. The binary files of the software are still available on its website for users to download. Some people came up with esoteric ways to share the source code, by converting the compressed code into photographs and providing shell commands to convert to the source code.

GitHub’s DMCA repository, where the takedown notice was published for public viewing, was subject to contant vandalism from multiple GitHub users. One user submitted a pull request, merging the source code of youtube-dl along with the DMCA repository. This enabled users to view youtube-dl’s source code from within the DMCA repository, provided they know the commit id.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation said on Twitter “Youtube-dl is a legitimate tool with a world of a lawful uses. Demanding its removal from Github is a disappointing and counterproductive move by the RIAA.” Richard Stallman, the founder of the Free Software Foundation, has been highly critical of DRM (digital rights management, the subject of the DMCA) for many years now.

Wikinews reached out to Sergey M?, one of the maintainers of youtube-dl script, however Sergey said he “won’t give any comments at this time”. Later, he shared an update on the IRC channel. Sergey said, “they require complete removal of so called YouTube’s rolling cipher implementation […] GitHub requires in order to reinstate the repo […] under this conditions I could reinstate it in Saturday/Sunday already but this is an unsatisfactory outcome”. He also said, “I can’t guarantee whether [or] not we will bend over them considering the situation with @phihag [Philipp Hagemeister] but we’ll see soon what we can do in order to keep the max we have and mitigate potential legal issues at the same time”.

EFF is yet to respond to Wikinews queries. Wikinews also reached out to Philipp Hagemeister, a former maintainer and contributor of the youtube-dl project to discuss this takedown.

When did you get to know about the takedown notice and what were your initial reactions?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) I saw the takedown notice along with anyone else, on reddit. Since I am no longer involved with the youtube-dl project (except for occasional contributions, my maintainership ended in 2016), I don’t know any details.

((RS)) Does YouTube implement DRM for videos not under Creative Commons license, and if so, how does youtube-dl bypass it? Could you please elaborate the procedure?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) YouTube implements DRM for YouTube Movies. youtube-dl does not support those.

YouTube has multiple non-DRM video delivery protocols. I’m not up to date about specifics; my last dabbling in this was in 2015.

One of these protocols is described here. YouTube uses JavaScript to compute parts of the URLs. youtube-dl executes this JavaScript, just like a web browser.

((WN)) Could you also explain in brief how youtube-dl functions, and how the maintainers had intended it to be used?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) youtube-dl downloads and plays videos and music, just like any other web browser, from over 1000 different services. Its uses are varied: It enables video playback on many devices (e.g. Raspberry Pi) where the video services don’t work properly, it makes high-quality video playable for people with a bad or no Internet connection, it enables disabled users to use tools to play videos, and it is used for archival and research.

((WN)) What do you think of the DMCA notice?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) I think it is not warranted because youtube-dl is entirely legal. As the DMCA notice has no effect for me personally, I’m not really the right person to address it.

((WN)) Why were the copyrighted tests in the source code? Could they be replaced?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) I’m not sure why, but my guess is that users requested support for these videos and thus they were added as test cases. They can be removed trivially, without losing any function of youtube-dl.

((WN)) Are you aware Electronic Frontier Foundation said it was a “disappointing and counterproductive move”? What do you think should be the next steps?

((Philipp Hagemeister)) Yes, and I concur. I’m no longer involved in the project. If I were, I would probably just remove the test cases, block these music videos (RIAA is not worth the trouble for me, that can be done by other projects), and get the project back online.I understand people who think differently.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=GitHub_blocks_public_access_to_youtube-dl_after_RIAA_issues_DMCA_notice&oldid=4598392”

Companies That Provide Title And Closing Services Are Invaluable

byadmin

Purchasing a home places a lot of items on your “to do” list and one of the most important is to choose a title and closing company. Title companies go back as far as the home has been in existence to make sure the title is clean, which makes title and closing services very valuable indeed. After all, no one wants to find out on the day of his or her closing that there is a problem with the title such as undocumented owners or liens that haven’t been paid. Working with a title company discloses all this information, which makes it easier to decide what to do next.

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Title Companies Do Extensive Research

Companies that provide title and closing services do extensive research into the home’s title and also prepare the paperwork for closing so that nothing is left undone. Whether the problem is missing heirs, some type of fraud, will misrepresentation, or mistakes that were made when the documents were recorded, these companies will catch it and even offer advice on what your next step should be. They enable you to have peace of mind going into your closing so that there are no surprises in later years.

Don’t Go it Alone

Not using a title company is only asking for trouble but using one allows you to feel good when nothing suspicious turns up. Companies such as Prestige Title work with owners of all types of properties and their thorough work means that you do not have to worry about being held liable if there is a problem because it will be cand performs all the duties that all reputable title companies do. Furthermore, their comprehensive title and closing services ensure that you will be completely prepared for your home’s closing, enabling you to relax until that important day. For more information visit prtitle.com. You can also join them on Google+ for more updates!

Asian countries call for global currency

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Asian countries call for global currency

Monday, April 6, 2009

Leaders and central banks in Russia, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Kazakhstan have called for an international currency system.

Speaking on April 1 in advance of the G-20 summit in London, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev argued that the international finance system needed a “new construction” including “new currency systems”, saying that such a new system could be the purpose of a revamped IMF and World Bank. The IMF was originally founded in 1946 as the overseer of the Bretton Woods system, which from its founding until the 1970s tied the western world’s currencies to the US Dollar, which was in turn backed by gold. Russia’s proposal was for the new currency to serve as a reserve currency, one which would take the place of the dollar, euro, and other heavily-traded currencies as an international standard of exchange.

Medvedev’s comments are a reversal of Russian position from a lukewarm response following a looser outline for a worldwide currency by Kazakhstani president Nursultan Nazarbayev. On March 11, Nazarbayev suggested the establishment of the “acmetal”, a portmanteau of “acme” and “capital“, as a reserve currency replacing the ruble in international transactions, first for Central Asia and then worldwide. 1999 Economics Nobel laureate Robert Mundell, speaking to the Daily Telegraph, endorsed the idea, saying “It would be a very good idea if the G-20 took that idea up in London”.

2001 Nobel economics prize winner Joseph Stiglitz, meanwhile, said the new currency could come about quickly if it was based on an expansion of the IMF’s already established system of Special Drawing Rights, units of exchange used by the IMF which already have some of the features of currency. Stiglitz argued that, as the US dollar has become the standard global reserve currency, it has inadvertently created a system which hurts the world economy. “It’s a net transfer, in a sense, to the United States of foreign aid,” he argued, reasoning that when other countries purchase US dollars in order to use them on international markets (such as for the buying and selling of petroleum), they effectively give the US a zero-interest loan — sometimes at times when they can least afford it. Stiglitz made his comments as head of a United Nations panel of economists giving recommendations to address the global financial crisis.

In the weeks leading up to the G-20 conference, the People’s Republic of China also began discussing a new system for reserve currencies. In a March 23 speech, Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People’s Bank of China, endorsed a new reserve currency, saying “the desirable goal of reforming the international monetary system, therefore, is to create an international reserve currency that is disconnected from individual nations and is able to remain stable in the long run, thus removing the inherent deficiencies caused by using credit-based national currencies.” Zhou went on to endorse the expansion of the SDR system in the long-term creation of a reserve currency government by the IMF. While Zhou did not mention the US dollar specifically, analysis by Qu Hongbin, chief China economist for HSBC, for the Financial Times said that the speech “is a clear sign that China, as the largest holder of US dollar financial assets, is concerned about the potential inflationary risk of the US Federal Reserve printing money”.

China holds $740 billion as assets; inflation in the US economy, which has been low in recent years, would directly cause those assets to lose value.

While the Chinese government has engaged in currency swaps with several other growing economies, such as South Korea, Argentina, Malaysia and Indonesia, the Chinese Yuan cannot be used itself as a reserve currency as it cannot be freely traded on the global market.

The Chinese-Russian proposal was not entered onto the agenda at the G-20 meeting itself. Nonetheless, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said that the G-20 was open to considering the proposal if and when a detailed one is presented. United States President Barack Obama, meanwhile, endorsed the continuation of dollar supremacy, saying that the US dollar is “extraordinarily strong” and arguing that its strength was the result of the intrinsic stability of the United States economic and political system; US treasury secretary Timothy Geithner had, the week before, made comments that while he supported an expansion in the SDR mechanism he rejected the idea of a global currency. Rather than change the role of SDRs, the G-20 meeting instead added $250 billion in support to the fund backing SDRs.

After the G-20 conference ended on Thursday, Malaysia’s The Star BizWeek reported that the central banks of Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand had endorsed the Chinese proposal. All three countries have close economic ties with China and suffered heavily from the collapse of their currencies in the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis; the sudden growth in the value of the US dollar relative to those countries’ native currencies sharply increased debt in Southeast Asia’s economies, leading to a wave of bankruptcies.

International reaction from other economies has been mixed and guarded. Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, President of Brazil, said that the currency proposal was important to discuss but did not give extensive comment. And while UPI reports that India supported the SDR proposal at the G-20 conference, the Indian Press Trust quotes Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as saying last month, “It is too early to talk about common currency.”

Calls for an independent global reserve currency are not new. In 1944, John Maynard Keynes proposed the “bancor“, a unit like the SDR supported by a basket of commodities. Keynes’ idea was rejected and the US dollar took the equivalent role under the Bretton Woods system. Keynes proposed that the bancor system would be reinforced by a tax on participating countries’ current accounts, the difference between their exports and their imports, in order to encourage balanced trade. Meanwhile, monetary unions have become more popular since the end of the gold standard, with most of the European Union now trading the euro, and several countries outside the EU using it as a de facto currency; five West African countries adopting the eco at the end of this year; and the African Union planning to introduce the afro in 2028. Proposals for a North American currency union based around the so-called “amero” have been frequently discussed as the focus of conspiracy theories in the United States, but none of the US, Canada or Mexico have actively pursued the establishment of any such monetary union, however the dollar is the currency of several Latin American countries.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Asian_countries_call_for_global_currency&oldid=4580125”

British newspaper makes House of Lords bribery claims

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British newspaper makes House of Lords bribery claims
April 18th, 2021 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Sunday, January 25, 2009

An investigation by the Sunday Times newspaper has made allegations of bribery against four members of the House of Lords, Britain’s unelected upper legislative body.

The paper says it has secretly made recordings of Lord Truscott admitting to making a recent energy bill more favourable to a client who markets “smart” electricity meters.

The Sunday Times also alleges that Lord Taylor of Blackburn had claimed to have made changes to a bill to help Experian, a credit reference agency. The paper adds that Lords Moonie and Snape had agreed to take payments from undercover journalists.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Baroness Royall of Blaisdon, the Leader of the House of Lords, issued a statement saying “I am deeply concerned about these allegations. I have spoken to the members who are the subject of them and I shall be pursuing these matters with the utmost vigour”.

The AFP news agency notes that the Lords’ Code of Conduct requires that members “must never accept any financial inducement as an incentive or reward for exercising parliamentary influence”. The Sunday Times says that there have been “persistent rumours” that lobbyists have switched to concentrating on the Lords rather than the Commons because “MPs are under greater scrutiny”.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=British_newspaper_makes_House_of_Lords_bribery_claims&oldid=1799768”

Surprise demolition of partially collapsed building in Buffalo, New York met with opposition

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Surprise demolition of partially collapsed building in Buffalo, New York met with opposition
April 17th, 2021 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Buffalo, New York —Wikinews has learned that, in a surprising turn of events, the city of Buffalo located in New York, has ordered and begun an emergency demolition on a three story 19th century stable which partially collapsed on Wednesday June 11 causing at least five homes to be evacuated. Residents are not happy, and despite the short notice of the demolition, nearly 30 people showed up to protest it. Demolition was not supposed to begin until Monday June 16.

At about 2:30 p.m. (eastern time) on June 13, demolition crew arrived at the stable located at 428 Jersey Avenue and began to unload heavy equipment which will be used to demolish the building. This came as a surprise to residents, as demolition was not supposed to start until Monday June 16.

During the early afternoon hours on June 11, the Buffalo Fire Department was called to scene after residents called 9-1-1 stating that part of the building had collapsed. Material from the building fell into the yards of at least three neighboring houses. Some of the bricks landed inside the building, while some fell into the yards of some houses behind homes on Richmond Avenue, leaving a ‘V’ shape.

At about 3:30 p.m. crews began to demolish a small portion of the stable located behind Joe Murray’s home, a resident who lives behind a portion of the building on Jersey and Richmond avenues. While demolition was taking place, the section collapsed into Murray’s backyard, prompting a call to police. Some residents who own home surrounding the building were inside Murray’s house holding a neighborhood meeting when demolition began. No one was injured when the section collapsed.

“[The building] can come down any minute,” stated Donna Berry of the Buffalo Police Department who also added that when police arrived on scene, they immediately put a stop to demolition, fearing the safety of surrounding residents and pedestrians.

“So many [of the] people [living around the building] are at risk, it makes me want to cry,” added Berry.

Police, local politicians and area residents are concerned that demolition crews and the city are not taking the proper precautions to ensure the safety of residents during demolition.

“[There is] no protection for neighbors. [This is] appalling and beyond negligence,” stated Tim Tielman, Executive Director of the Campaign for Buffalo who was referring to the negligence of the demolition crew.

“[In order to stop demolition] citizens must demonstrate direct harm to themselves,” added Tielman.

The city’s preservation board held an emergency meeting on Thursday to discuss the issue. Wikinews has learned that the owner of the building, Bob Freudenheim, gave the city permission to demolish the building because he would not be “rehabilitating the building anytime soon.” Freudenheim was part-owner of the Hotel Lenox at 140 North Street in Buffalo and was also an advocate to stop the Elmwood Village Hotel from being built on the corners of Forest and Elmwood Avenues in 2006 and 2007, which Wikinews extensively covered. He also financially supported a lawsuit in an attempt to stop the hotel from being built. Though it is not known exactly how long Freudenheim has owned the stable, Wikinews has learned that he was the owner while fighting to stop the hotel from being built.

Tielman states that he was in contact with Freudenheim this morning. Tielman states that Freudenheim “is not spending a dime” to have the building renovated. Tielman states that Freudenheim has offered to sell the building to any interested party for only one US dollar, but that he “flip flops [his decision] constantly,” sometimes wanting hundreds of thousands of dollars for the building. Wikinews has attempted to contact Freudenheim, but so far has been unsuccessful.

City building inspectors were also on scene evaluating the building and ensuring the safety of residents. Donald Grezebielucina states that “some people are on notice to vacate their properties”, but also stated that no other precautions were being taken other than placing “tires and scaffolding” onto the side of 430 Jersey, which sits less than eight feet from the buildings East side.

“The gas has been shut off in case we lost the building, so there would be no explosions or anything like that. It’s so unstable, the structural integrity is gone. The chemical composite of the trusses has changed dramatically and dry rotted. There are three vehicles in the basement which totally disappeared,” stated Grezebielucina to the press while protesters yelled “save our building, save our neighborhood.”

Wikinews has also learned that local residents have consulted a lawyer regarding the issue, and hope to petition the New York State Supreme court to issue an injunction to stop demolition. They states that Freudenheim should be “100% responsible” for his actions, and many are afraid that once the building is demolished, Freudenheim’s charges of neglect will be abolished. Freudenheim is facing housing violations for neglecting the building. Though residents are fighting, Tielman states that “an injunction is unlikely.”

“We had a letter of violation against him. He was supposed to have started work to stabilize the brick this Monday. We all hope this building could be saved. But we’ve got five houses evacuated and we cannot tolerate any further delay. We’ve got to get people back into their homes in a safe condition,” said Richard Tobe, Commissioner of the city’s Permit and Inspection Services.

Demolition is set to resume at 8:00 a.m.in the morning of Saturday June 14.

Mike Lombardo, the Commissioner for the Buffalo Fire Department, believes that the building was built in 1812 or 1814, making it nearly 200 years old. It is one of only three stables still standing in the city.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Surprise_demolition_of_partially_collapsed_building_in_Buffalo,_New_York_met_with_opposition&oldid=771930”

Ways To Cut Down On Heating Costs In Maple Grove

April 17th, 2021 in Pipes | No Comments

byAlma Abell

The summer has been hot and long, so almost everyone is ready for the hint of winter that is now in the air. Glistening snow is starting to pile up on the once lush green landscapes, and the heating costs are about to soar through the roof. While winter is a great time to cuddle up in front of the fire and enjoy the snow falling outside, Heating in Maple Grove can take a toll on your wallet. Here are some simple tips to help reduce your heating bills this winter.The first thing you will want to do is call in Sabre Heating, Plumbing and Air Conditioning to check out your old furnace for you. Even new furnaces need to be maintained, but an older furnace can send your electric bills through the roof. Change the filters on your furnace on a regular basis and have the furnace often, not just for your electric bill, but for the safety of your family as well.Make sure that your attic is well-insulated. Heat rises and if your attic is drafty, then your heat, and your money, are going right out the roof of your home. Make sure to check your basement, baseboards, and crawl spaces for holes, cracks, or anywhere that the heat can escape from your home.Heat often escapes from the windows in your home, if you don’t weatherproof them properly. Make sure to caulk and weather strip any areas on your windows that heat can escape through. It is estimated that you can save up to 30 percent more on your electric bills by just weatherproofing your windows.Close off rooms that you don’t use, and cook at home. Not only does cooking at home save you money that you would spend eating out, baking also warms up your home, making cooking at home a double benefit.Saving on your heating bill isn’t as hard as it may seem, if you follow the tips above. There are many other tips for Heating in Maple Grove and controlling those high heating costs. Make sure to have your furnace maintained and the rest will fall into place.

English court jails policeman over insurance fraud

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English court jails policeman over insurance fraud
April 16th, 2021 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A court in England, UK has jailed a policeman for ten months after he was convicted of defrauding his car insurance company.

Police Constable Simon Hood, 43, arranged for a friend who dealt in scrap metal to dispose of his Audi TT, then claimed it had been stolen.

Hood had been disappointed with the car’s value when he tried to sell it two years after its purchase in 2008. He arranged for friend Peter Marsh, 41, to drive the vehicle to his scrapyard in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. Marsh then dismantled the vehicle with the intent of disposing of it, but parts were later found wrapped in bubblewrap at Ace Tyre and Exhaust Centre.

Marsh picked up the TT from outside nearby Gorleston police station. Records show mobile phone conversations between the conspirators that day in March, both before and after the vehicle was reported stolen. The pair denied wrongdoing but were convicted of conspiring to commit insurance fraud after trial.

The fraud was uncovered after Hood told former girlfriend Suzanne Coates of the scheme. It was alleged before Norwich Crown Court that he had confessed to her in an effort to resume their relationship. Coates said that after the pseudotheft, Hood told her “he didn’t want to look for it. He said it would be like looking for a needle in a haystack, which I thought was a bit strange.”

You knew throughout your career that policemen that get involved in serious dishonesty get sent to prison

Shortly afterwards Hood suggested they should become a couple once more, she said; she challenged his version of events regarding the car: “He said he did it but I couldn’t tell anyone. He said he did it with Peter. Peter had a key and took the car away and it was going to be taken to bits and got rid of so it was never found.”

Hood was defended by Michael Clare and Marsh by Richard Potts. Both lawyers told the court that their clients had already suffered as a result of the action in mitigation before sentencing. Clare said Hood had resigned from the police after fifteen years of otherwise good service and risked losing his pension. “It is not a case where his position as a police officer was used in order to facilitate the fraud,” he pointed out. “His career is in ruins.” Hood is now pursuing a career in plumbing.

Potts defended Marsh by saying that he, too, had already suffered from his actions. His own insurers are refusing to renew their contract with him when it expires and his bank withdrew its overdraft facility. His business employs 21 people and Potts cited Marsh’s sponsorship of Great Yarmouth In Bloom as amongst evidence he supported his local community.

Judge Alasdair Darroch told Marsh that he did accept the man was attempting to help his friend. He sentenced Marsh to six months imprisonment, suspended for two years and ordered to carry out 250 hours of community service. He was more critical of Hood:

“As a police officer you know the highest possible standards are demanded by the public. You have let down the force. You knew throughout your career that policemen that get involved in serious dishonesty get sent to prison.”

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=English_court_jails_policeman_over_insurance_fraud&oldid=4459597”

Kennedy Center names 2007 honors recipients

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Kennedy Center names 2007 honors recipients
April 16th, 2021 in Uncategorized | No Comments

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Kennedy Center announced that its 30th presentation of the Kennedy Center Honors would go to pianist Leon Fleisher, comedian Steve Martin, singer Diana Ross, director Martin Scorsese and musician Brian Wilson. The Center was opened to the public in 1971 and was envisioned as part of the National Cultural Center Act, which mandated that the independent, privately-funded institution would present a wide variety of both classical and contemporary performances, commission the creation of new artistic works, and undertake a variety of educational missions to increase awareness of the arts.

In a statement, Kennedy Center Chairman Stephen A. Schwarzman said that “with their extraordinary talent, creativity and perseverance, the five 2007 honorees have transformed the way we, as Americans, see, hear and feel the performing arts.”

Fleisher, 79, a member of the Peabody Institute‘s music faculty, is a pianist who lost use of his right hand in 1965 due to a neurological condition. He became an accomplished musician and conductor through the use of his left hand. At 67, he regained the use of his right hand. With the advent of Botox therapy, he was once more able to undertake two-hand performances in 2004, his first in four decades. “I’m very gratified by the fact that it’s an apolitical honor,” Fleisher said. “It is given by colleagues and professional people who are aware of what [an artist] has done, so it really is apolitical — and that much more of an honor.”

Martin, 62, a comedian who has written books and essays in addition to his acting and stand-up comedy career, rose to fame during his work on the American television program Saturday Night Live in the 1970’s. Schwarzman praised his work as that of a “renaissance comic whose talents wipe out the boundaries between artistic disciplines.” Martin responded to the honor saying, “I am grateful to the Kennedy Center for finally alleviating in me years of covetousness and trophy envy.”

Ross, 63, was a product of Detroit‘s Brewster-Douglass Projects when as a teeager she and friends Mary Wilson and Florence Ballardis formed The Supremes, a ground-breaking Motown act. She portrayed singer Billie Holiday in the 1972 film Lady Sings the Blues, which earned her an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe award. “Diana Ross’ singular, instantly recognizable voice has spread romance and joy throughout the world,” said Schwarzman. Ross said she was “taken aback. It is a huge, huge honor and I am excited to be in this class of people.”

Scorsese, 64, is one of the most accomplished directors the United States ever produced, whose work includes Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, GoodFellas, Cape Fear, The Last Temptation of Christ and The Departed, for which he won a 2006 Academy Award for Best Director after being nominated eight times. Scorsese said, “I’m very honored to be receiving this recognition from the Kennedy Center and proud to be joining the company of the very distinguished individuals who have received this honor in years past.”

Wilson, 65, along with his brothers Dennis and Carl, formed the Beach Boys in 1961. They had a series of hits that included “Surfin’ U.S.A.” and “Wouldn’t It Be Nice.” Their 1966 album Pet Sounds is considered one of the most influential recordings in American music. “This is something so unexpected and I feel extremely fortunate to be in the company of such great artists,” said Wilson, who is currently on tour.

The Kennedy Center’s board of trustees is responsible for selecting honorees for “lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts.” Previous honorees, including Elton John and Steven Spielberg, also submitted recommendations. A wide variety of people were under consideration, including Emanuel Ax, Evgeny Kissin, Renee Fleming, Laurence Fishburne, Francis Ford Coppola, Melissa Etheridge and Kenny Chesney.

President Bush and first lady Laura Bush will attend the center’s presentation at its opera house on December 2, 2007, which will broadcast on December 26 on CBS.

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High Altitude Breads

April 15th, 2021 in Custom Kitchens | No Comments

By Dennis Weaver

Can you make bread and buns in the mountains?

We got a call from California this week, I can make great bread in L.A. but at my cabin in Montana, it doesnt turn out so well.

We would like to help. This summer, you might find yourself at a cabin or in an RV high in the mountains. That doesnt mean you cant enjoy great bread.

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Yeast products are not as sensitive to altitude as chemically leavened products. We have worked with yeasted breads at almost 11,000 feet in the Rockies. The trick is realizing that you are working with living creatures and giving them the culture that they need to thrive ina warm, moist environment. In a healthy culture, yeast organisms feed on the sugars and starches in the dough, multiply rapidly, and expel carbon dioxide gases that make the dough rise. If the dough is not moist enough, it will take much longer for the dough to rise. Yeast organisms are very sensitive to temperature. If the dough is too cool, the yeast organisms do not multiply as rapidly and produce less gas.

The recipe that works so well for you on the coast may not work so well in the Rockies. But it may not be the altitude; it may be the humidity. In a humid location, unsealed flour absorbs moisture; in a dry climate, that same flour dries out. If you add the same amount of water to flour in both locations, the dough in the humid climate will be much moister. But the solution is simple: add enough water that the dough is soft and moist.

At higher altitudes, your kitchen may be cooler than it is at home. A few degrees difference in temperature will make a substantial difference in the time it takes your dough to rise. Compensate by taking advantage of the warmest spot in the kitchen. (At 11,000 feet in the Rockies, we had to move a tent to the warmest spot we could find, banking the tent into the sun.)

There are some other tricks that you can deploy to help that yeast along. A little extra sugar will feed the yeast and speed growth. An extra teaspoon per loaf will do and probably wont make a noticeable difference in your recipe. Salt retards yeast growth. If you cut the amount of salt in a recipe by 1/2 teaspoon per loaf, you will speed the yeast along.

Be patient, be willing to experiment a little, and be cognizant of the yeast culture and youll soon have perfect bread at any altitude.

About the Author: Dennis Weaver is a baker, a recipe designer, and a writer. He has written many baking guides and

How to Bake,

a comprehensive baking and reference e-book–available free at

The Prepared Pantry

which sells baking and cooking supplies and has a free online baking library.

Source:

isnare.com

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