Friday, April 19th, 2019 | Author:

Sunday, December 2, 2007

American heavy metal performer Ozzy Osbourne, who became famous as the lead vocalist for Black Sabbath and later as a solo act, has raised more than US$800,000 for The Sharon Osbourne Colon Cancer Program, founded by his spouse Sharon Osbourne at the Cedars Sinai Hospital, by auctioning off personal items.

A number of the items that he auctioned off over the two day period have been seen on his reality TV show The Osbournes, which featured home life with Sharon, Ozzy and their two children. Amongst some of the higher-priced items were a carved walnut Victorian-style custom built pool table which raised $11,250, a painting from Edourad Drouot which fetched $10,500, a pair of Ozzy’s famous round glasses which raised $5,250 and a dog bed given to Sharon by Elton John which sold for $2,375.

Some more famous items were also amongst the 500 lots offered. Ozzy’s black satin coat, complete with bat-wing cape, raised $3,300 and a hand-painted floral cup used regularly on The Osbournes made $1,625. A bronze plaque of a demon’s head that was regularly seen in its position adorning the front door of their house had been expected to go for $800 to $1,200instead raised $8,750. A wire model of the Eiffel Tower from on the kitchen table sold for $10,000, while skull-covered trainers Ozzy had worn reached $2,625. Bidders came from as far away as Germany to buy what they could from his mansion in Beverly Hills, California.

However, three cars included in the auction failed to attract bidders and did not sell. They were a 2006 Bentley Continental Flying Spur, estimated at $160,000 to $180,000, a 2005 Cadillac CTS-V sedan estimated at $30,000 to $40,000 and a 1950 Oldsmobile Futuramic 88 Club Coupe previously owned by author Danielle Steel estimated at $40,000 to $50,000. Sharon had earlier said of the cars “We’re not great car people. They really don’t do a lot for us.

Darren Julien, president of Julien’s Auctions, which organised the two-day sale, said “It did very well. It raised some good money for a very worthy cause.”

“For a celebrity garage sale, it was pretty spectacular.,” he went on. He also commented on the fact that there was fierce competition for the many artworks included. “We had Ozzy fans bidding against these sophisticated fine art buyers, which you don’t see every day. For the most part the metalheads were outbidding the art crowd.”

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Thursday, April 18th, 2019 | Author:

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

A fire has broken out at the Moscow State Institute of State and Corporate Management, a five-story university, claiming at least six lives. More than two dozen are said to be injured.

The fire started around 13:00 (09:00 GMT). Some students and teachers were trapped and had to climb out onto trees, jump four or five stories onto nets held by firefighters, or climb down drainpipes to escape.

Helicopters were called in to evacuate the injured and engage in aerial firefighting activities.

Spokesman for the Emergency Situations Ministry, Viktor Beltsov, said that six died and 30 were treated for smoke inhalation, burns and other injuries. The International Herald Tribune says that seven were killed and 35 injured, although it also quotes its figures from Mr Beltsov.

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Thursday, April 18th, 2019 | Author:

Monday, December 7, 2015

Yesterday, at least seven people including Aden, Yemen governor Jaafar Mohammed Saad died in a car bomb attack on their convoy in the city of Aden, according to local officials. An online claim of responsibility on behalf of militant group ISIS called Saad a “tyrant”.

An online post purportedly from the group claimed they detonated the bomb as Saad’s convoy passed where the car was parked. The post shared photos purporting to show Saad’s vehicle passing the parked car, and the following explosion.

People as much as 10km away reported hearing the explosion, and medics said it left victims’ bodies unrecognizable. Photos supposedly of the attack showed a burning, wrecked car. Aden’s Jumhoriya Hospital treated the victims.

The online statement threatened to “chop off” the “rotten heads” of Yemen’s “infidels”, and said more attacks are coming.

Iran-backed Houthi rebels, who follow Shia Islam, have taken over Yemen’s capital of Sanaa. Until just recently, President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi’s government operated for several months in Saudi Arabia, which has led a coalition involving air strikes against the rebels.

Yemeni fatalities in ISIS-claimed bombings this year number reportedly around 159. Yemeni fatalities since March, when Saudi Arabia’s pro-Hadi airstrikes began, number at least 5,700 according to the United Nations.

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Thursday, April 18th, 2019 | Author:

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A World Health Organisation study published in The Lancet has revealed the main causes of death for people aged 10–24. It has described the majority of these deaths as preventable and suggested solutions to the problems.

97% of the 2.6 million fatalities annually occur in low- and middle-income countries. The age group comprises 1.8 billion people, 30% of the total population. 15% of female deaths were down to “maternal mortality” which included pregnancy complications, unsafe abortions, and mutilation of genitals. Road traffic accidents accounted for 10% of deaths.

6.3% of the deaths were suicides and 6% were down to violence. Tuberculosis and similar lung infections took 10% of the lives and HIV/AIDS killed 5.5%. Most of the deaths were in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. Africa and Southeast Asia were also the only places where male deaths were not above those of females, as much of the maternal mortality occurred there. The data came from 2004.

In developed countries, 32% of the deaths were down to road accidents. “There has long been an assumption that young people are healthy, fit and they don’t die,” explained the report’s lead author, Australian children’s health expert George Patton. He goes on to say “I’ve certainly heard politicians and policy-makers make statements of that kind… Some of these problems, related to emotion, are actually very prominent causes not only of death in adolescence, but health problems later in life.”

The study said safer speed limits, more use of helmets and seatbelts, and better enforcement of drunk driving law could greatly curb the road deaths. Maternal deaths and sexually transmitted disease rates could be cut by sexual education, safe abortion clinics, pregnancy support, HIV testing and treatment, and access to contraceptives.

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Violence and suicide could be reduced by education in life skills and an improved role of parents, the study found. It also sought reduction of availability of poisons, firearms, and other dangerous items. In the case of suicide, the study said more work was needed to help young people recover from acts of violence, sexual assault, and child abuse in both the short and long term. Alcohol access reduction was also requested.

The study was conducted by University College London’s Russell Viner, World Health Organization’s Krishna Bose and George Patton of the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia.

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Wednesday, April 17th, 2019 | Author:

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Despite the hopes of many University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) students, The Onion was not named after their student center. “People always ask questions about where the name The Onion came from,” said President Sean Mills in an interview with David Shankbone, “and when I recently asked Tim Keck, who was one of the founders, he told me the name—I’ve never heard this story about ‘see you at the un-yun’—he said it was literally that his Uncle said he should call it The Onion when he saw him and Chris Johnson eating an onion sandwich. They had literally just cut up the onion and put it on bread.” According to Editorial Manager Chet Clem, their food budget was so low when they started the paper that they were down to white bread and onions.

Long before The Daily Show and The Colbert Report, Heck and Johnson envisioned a publication that would parody the news—and news reporting—when they were students at UW in 1988. Since its inception, The Onion has become a veritable news parody empire, with a print edition, a website that drew 5,000,000 unique visitors in the month of October, personal ads, a 24 hour news network, podcasts, and a recently launched world atlas called Our Dumb World. Al Gore and General Tommy Franks casually rattle off their favorite headlines (Gore’s was when The Onion reported he and Tipper were having the best sex of their lives after his 2000 Electoral College defeat). Many of their writers have gone on to wield great influence on Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert‘s news parody shows.

And we are sorry to break the news to all you amateur headline writers: your submissions do not even get read.

Below is David Shankbone’s interview with Chet Clem and Sean Mills about the news empire that has become The Onion.

Contents

  • 1 How The Onion writes an issue
  • 2 The headlines
  • 3 The features and the columnists
  • 4 The photojournalism
  • 5 What The Onion will not publish
  • 6 Reactions to Onion stories
  • 7 The Presidential Seal
  • 8 The Onion’s readership
  • 9 Future features
  • 10 Handling national tragedies
  • 11 The Onion movie and Onion News Network
  • 12 Relationship with other satirical news programs
  • 13 Unsolicited material
  • 14 Source
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Sunday, April 14th, 2019 | Author:

Tuesday, June 14, 2005File:JacobZuma.jpg

Today at about 1600 UTC/GMT, South African President Thabo Mbeki announced in a special session of parliament that he has taken action he feels is necessary, that is to “release [his deputy president], Jacob Zuma, from his responsibilities as deputy president of the republic and member of the cabinet”.

Zuma was implicated in corruption arising from his relationship with his former financial adviser, Schabir Shaik, who was convicted of corruption and fraud earlier this month. Shaik was found guilty by Durban High Court of two counts of corruption and one of fraud and was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.

The President has called this one of his toughest decisions. Opposition leader of the Democratic Alliance immediately praised the president for holding “principle over politics”, and, while deeply saddened, former president Nelson Mandela supported Mbeki’s decision. Jacob Zuma was the favourite of the ruling African National Congress party to succeed Thabo Mbeki as president.

Following this ordeal, the government of South Africa has reaffirmed its dedication to the reduction and eventual elimination of corruption in all areas of politics.

UPDATE (July 7)

The African National Congress held a meeting of it’s National General Council over the weekend of 2-3 July. Zuma attracted a lot of favourable attention, mostly from people who wished to defeat policy initiatives that included relaxing some of the legal constraints on employers. He was reinstated as ANC deputy president and, in a first for the party, granted a salary (details not revealed). It now appears that Jacob Zuma’s political future is closely tied to that of the “left wing” of the ANC.

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Sunday, April 14th, 2019 | Author:

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A Muslim woman has been killed by her religious apparel during a freak go-cart accident in Port Stephens, Australia. Mariam Dadoun, a 26-year-old mother, was out with her two children and husband enjoying their vacation time. While visiting Port Stephens Go-Karts, the vehicle had twisted her flowing hijab in the wheel’s axle.

Peter Fox of Port Stephens Local Area Command said, “the scarf was pulled across her throat […] from one side of the body to the other side”.

Medical professionals on the scene succeeded in reviving Dadoun. However, she shortly died of severe neck and throat injuries after being airlifted in a Westpac rescue helicopter to the nearby John Hunter Hospital.

The track has since been closed pending further investigation and a lack of proper licensing. The go-cart used in the accident has similarly been taken away for forensic examination by police authorities.

The spokesman of the New South Wales division of WorkCover, an organization tasked with ensuring the safety of amusement devices, commented that, “[Go-carts are] classified as amusement devices that have to be registered for safety purposes”. One go-cart on the property was found to lack proper guarding while the other had not been certified for use.

Sharon and Scott Taylor were waiting in line with their children at the time. Scott said that the injuries were clearly severe as the paramedics began helping her. He added, “Her clothing had wrapped around her neck”. “The cart hit the wall and stopped and she was just slumped over,” remarked Sharon.

Dadoun was the mother of two children, aged six and four. According to her aunt, she was a devoted caregiver and had been always willing to help others. More specifically, she remarked, “If anyone needed help, she wouldn’t say no. She did a lot for everybody – for her friends, her family, her relatives.” Strongly said, “You can’t describe Mariam. She was the best.”

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Sunday, April 14th, 2019 | Author:

Sunday, December 13, 2015

This article is a featured article. It is considered one of the best works of the Wikinews community. See Wikinews:Featured articles for more information.

Macomb, New York Councilman Steve Burke took some time to speak with Wikinews about his campaign for the U.S. Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential nomination.

Burke, an insurance adjuster and farmer, was elected councilman in Brookhaven, New York in 1979. He left the town after being accused and found not guilty of bribery in the 1980s. Since 1987 he has served as Macomb councilman off-and-on and currently holds the post. From 1993 to 1996 and 1999 to 2002 he worked as chairman of the Democratic Party of St. Lawrence County, New York. Among his many political campaigns, Burke unsuccessfully sought the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination in 1992 and recently attempted to run for U.S. Congress in 2014 but too many of his ballot petition signatures were found invalid. Burke filed with the Federal Election Commission to run for president in the 2016 election on September 18, 2015 and has qualified for the first-in-the-nation New Hampshire Primary.

With Wikinews reporter William S. Saturn?, Burke discusses his political background, his 2016 presidential campaign, and his policy proposals.

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Wednesday, April 03rd, 2019 | Author:

Friday, May 16, 2008

Controversy has arisen over the reported presence of blue asbestos on the MV Freewinds, a cruise ship owned by the Church of Scientology. According to the Saint Martin newspaper The Daily Herald and the shipping news journal Lloyd’s List, the Freewinds was sealed in April and local public health officials on the Caribbean island of Curaçao where the ship is docked began an investigation into the presence of asbestos dust on the ship. Former Scientologist Lawrence Woodcraft supervised work on the ship in 1987, and attested to the presence of blue asbestos on the Freewinds in an affidavit posted to the Internet in 2001. Woodcraft, a licensed architect by profession, gave a statement to Wikinews and commented on the recent events.

According to The Daily Herald, the Freewinds was in the process of being renovated by the Curaçao Drydock Company. The article states that samples taken from paneling in the ship were sent to the Netherlands, where an analysis revealed that they “contained significant levels of blue asbestos”. An employee of the Curaçao Drydock Company told Radar Online in an April 30 article that the Freewinds has been docked and sealed, and confirmed that an article about asbestos ran in the local paper.

Lloyd’s List reported that work on the interior of the Freewinds was suspended on April 27 after health inspectors found traces of blue asbestos on the ship. According to Lloyd’s List, Frank Esser, Curaçao Drydock Company’s interim director, joined Curaçao’s head of the department of labor affairs Christiene van der Biezen along with the head of the local health department Tico Ras and two inspectors in an April 25 inspection of the ship. “We are sending someone so that they can tell us what happened, where it came from, since when it has been there,” said Panama Maritime Authority’s director of merchant marine Alfonso Castillero in a statement to Lloyd’s List.

The Church of Scientology purchased the ship, then known as the Bohème, in 1987, through an organization called Flag Ship Trust. After being renovated and refitted, it was put into service in June 1988. The ship is used by the Church of Scientology for advanced Scientology training in “Operating Thetan” levels, as well as for spiritual retreats for its members. Curaçao has been the ship’s homeport since it was purchased by the Church of Scientology.

According to his 2001 statement, Lawrence Woodcraft had been an architect in London, England since 1975, and joined Scientology’s elite “Sea Organization” (Sea Org) in 1986. He wrote that he was asked by the Sea Org to work on the Freewinds in 1987, and during his work on the ship “noticed a powdery blue fibrous substance approximately 1 ½” thick between the paint and the steel wall,” which he believed to be asbestos. He also discovered what he thought was blue asbestos in other parts of the ship, and reported his findings to Church of Scientology executives. Woodcraft discussed his experiences in a 2001 interview published online by the Lisa McPherson Trust, a now-defunct organization which was critical of the Church of Scientology.

The Freewinds regularly inspects the air quality on board and always meets or exceeds US standards.

Church of Scientology spokeswoman Karin Pouw responded to Radar Online about the asbestos reports, in an email published in an article in Radar on May 1. “The Freewinds regularly inspects the air quality on board and always meets or exceeds US standards,” said Pouw. She stated that two inspections performed in April “confirmed that the air quality is safe,” and asserted that the inspections revealed the Freewinds satisfies standards set by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the U.S. Clean Air Act.

Pouw told Radar that “The Freewinds will be completing its refit on schedule.” The Church of Scientology-affiliated organization Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR) had been planning a cruise aboard the Freewinds scheduled for May 8, but according to Radar an individual who called the booking number for the cruise received a message that the cruise had been delayed due to ongoing work on the ship. Citing an article in the Netherlands Antilles newspaper Amigoe, Radar reported on May 6 that a team from the United States and supervised by an independent bureau from the Netherlands traveled to Curaçao in order to remove asbestos from the Freewinds.

…if the Church of Scientology claims to have removed the blue asbestos, I just don’t see how, it’s everywhere. You would first have to remove all the pipes, plumbing, a/c ducts, electrical wiring etc. etc. just a maze of stuff.

“I stand by everything I wrote in my 2001 affidavit,” said Lawrence Woodcraft in an exclusive statement given to Wikinews. Woodcraft went on to state: “I would also comment that if the Church of Scientology claims to have removed the blue asbestos, I just don’t see how, it’s everywhere. You would first have to remove all the pipes, plumbing, a/c ducts, electrical wiring etc. etc. just a maze of stuff. Also panelling as well, basically strip the ship back to a steel hull. Also blue asbestos is sprayed onto the outer walls and then covered in paint. It’s in every nook and cranny.”

Many Scientologist celebrities have spent time aboard the Freewinds, including Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, John Travolta, Kelly Preston, Chick Corea, Lisa Marie Presley, Catherine Bell, Kate Ceberano, and Juliette Lewis. Now magazine reported that Tom Cruise has been urged to seek medical attention regarding potential asbestos exposure, however a representative for Cruise stated he has “absolutely no knowledge” of the recent asbestos controversy. Cruise, Holmes, Travolta and Preston have celebrated birthdays and other events on the Freewinds.

There is not now and never has been a situation of asbestos exposure on the Freewinds.

In a May 15 statement to the United Kingdom daily newspaper Metro, a representative for the Church of Scientology said that “There is not now and never has been a situation of asbestos exposure on the Freewinds.” The Asbestos and Mesothelioma Center notes that agencies have recommended anyone who has spent time on the Freewinds consult with their physician to determine if possible asbestos exposure may have affected their health.

Raw blue asbestos is the most hazardous form of asbestos, and has been banned in the United Kingdom since 1970. Blue asbestos fibers are very narrow and thus easily inhaled, and are a major cause of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a form of cancer which can develop in the lining of the lungs and chest cavity, the lining of the abdominal cavity, or the pericardium sac surrounding the heart. The cancer is incurable, and can manifest over 40 years after the initial exposure to asbestos.

“This is the most dangerous type of asbestos because the fibres are smaller than the white asbestos and can penetrate the lung more easily,” said toxicologist Dr. Chris Coggins in a statement published in OK! Magazine. Dr. Coggins went on to note that “Once diagnosed with mesothelioma, the victim has six months to a year to live. It gradually reduces lung function until the victim is no longer able to breathe and dies.”

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Monday, April 01st, 2019 | Author:

Monday, October 24, 2016

On Friday, a network of diverse Internet-connected devices targeted the Dyn domain registration service provider. It took down Dyn clients, including several popular websites such as Twitter, Netflix, Spotify, Reddit, New York Times, and Wired.

The attack involved targeting Dyn’s domain name system servers with a large volume of requests, rendering it incapable of serving replies to legitimate requests — a DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack. Users’ browsers and other clients sent requests to Dyn to resolve the respective web sites’ domain names to an IP, but did not get a reply within the time required.

The first attack started at about 7am local time (UTC-4) and was resolved in two hours. A second attack started at mid-day, and a third attack started at about 4pm local time. Tens of millions of malicious request sources were observed, interfering with legitimate Dyn traffic.

The reports noted the malicious devices included internet-connected devices — not only servers and desktops, but also webcams, digital video recorders, routers — referred to as the Internet of Things.

On Friday evening Dyn said a security company Flashpoint and a cloud services provider Akamai identified symptoms of malware Mirai participating in the attacks. The malware infects the devices by brute forcing their passwords. This strategy may work as a consequence of users’ negligence towards password security of stationary devices, which the users do not directly interact with in their everyday life while leaving them exposed to the Internet.

Matthew Prince, the CEO of an Internet infrastructure company Cloudflare said it’s a known issue, “There’s nothing really new about [this type of DDoS attack]. We’ve seen them for at least the last three years, they tend to be difficult to stop”.

Public release of Mirai source code was announced at Hackforums on September 30.

Dyn’s corporate headquarters are in New Hampshire.

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