Anthrocon 2007 draws thousands to Pittsburgh for furry weekend

April 16, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 1:03 am

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — Local caterers get ready for big business, as almost three thousand fans converge on the David L. Lawrence Convention Center over the Independence Day weekend for the world’s largest ever furry convention, Anthrocon 2007.

Many hope to renew acquaintances, or meet new friends. Others look to buy from dealers and artists, or show off new artwork or costumes. Some attend to make money, or even learn a thing or two. But one thing unites them: They’re all there to have fun.


  • 1 Costly expansion
  • 2 Programming and entertainment
  • 3 Audience
  • 4 Art show and dealers
  • 5 Charity and volunteers
  • 6 Local impact
  • 7 Related news
  • 8 Sources

Freak wave rocks luxury liner–4 hurt

April 14, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 1:15 am

Sunday, April 17, 2005

The Norwegian Dawn, a 965-foot-long luxury vessel, was struck by “a freak wave that caused two windows to break in two different cabins,” the owners, Norwegian Cruise Line, said in a statement. It changed course, docking in Charleston late Saturday afternoon instead of completing its planned travel to New York.

The wave, estimated at 7-stories-high, flooded 62 cabins and injured 4 passengers with cuts and bruises. Company spokeswoman Susan Robison said the wave reached to deck 10.

The hull was damaged but the vessel was not in any trouble, according to the Coast Guard, and the safety of the ship “was in no way compromised by this incident.” Passengers were told to don their flotation jackets anyway.

The ship left New York last Sunday on a week-long round-trip cruise to and from the Bahamas.



in Uncategorized @ 1:04 am


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Ukraine opposition candidate Yushchenko is suffering from a Dioxin intoxication, doctors say


in Uncategorized @ 1:01 am

Saturday, December 11, 2004

VIENNA –Doctors from the Rudolfinerhaus clinic in Vienna say “there is no doubt” Ukrainian opposition leader Victor Yushchenko was poisoned with Dioxin.

Yushchenko’s body had about 1,000 times more than the normal concentration of the toxin. It is unknown if there were any other poisons in his system.

Although it has not yet been proven that the poisoning was deliberate, doctors suspect it was. “We suspect a cause triggered by a third party,” said Michael Zimpfer, head doctor at the Rudolfinerhaus clinic. He suggested the poison may have been administered orally, through food or drink.

Today’s announcements are a follow-up of an earlier press conference, where Dr. Korpan that there were three hypotheses under consideration, one of them involving dioxin. He did not reveal what the other two hypotheses were. Dr. Michael Zimpfer, director of the Rudolfinerhaus clinic emphasized that time there was no proof yet to specify the substance causing the illness.

Yushchenko left Kiev on Friday (2004-10-12) for further examination in Vienna. When Yushchenko fell ill on October 6th, Ukrainian doctors had initially diagnosed food poisoning, leading to speculation that he had been poisoned deliberately. The illness has disfigured Yushchenko’s body and face which doctors say could take up to two years to heal.

He fell seriously ill on the September 6th, during his presidential campaign. Yushchenko was taken to the Rudolfinerhaus clinic of Vienna, where he stayed for four days under Dr. Korpan’s care. He was diagnosed with “acute pancreatitis, accompanied by interstitial edematous changes.” These symptoms were said to be due to “a serious viral infection and chemical substances which are not normally found in food products” as his campaign officials put it. In laymans terms, he developed an infection in the pancreas and got a bad skin condition that disfigured his face with cysts and lesions. The skin condition has similarities with the chloracne associated with dioxin posioning according to a British toxicologist John Henry.

Earlier, doctor Nikolai Korpan of Rudolfinerhaus clinic confirmed today that the illness of Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko was caused by an attempt to kill him.

  • Ukraine political crisis – Wikinews’ special coverage portal

Wikinews interviews Frank Moore, independent candidate for US President

April 10, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 1:05 am

Saturday, March 1, 2008

While nearly all coverage of the 2008 Presidential election has focused on the Democratic and Republican candidates, the race for the White House also includes independents and third party candidates. These parties represent a variety of views that may not be acknowledged by the major party platforms.

Wikinews has impartially reached out to these candidates, throughout the campaign. We now interview independent Presidential candidate Frank Moore, a performance artist.

Coalition ups ante on Australian school tax rebates

April 4, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:05 am

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott has pledged private school relief if the Liberal/National coalition wins the upcoming federal election. The pledge came in response to the Australian Labor Party leader, and current Prime Minister, Julia Gillard proposing a uniform and school equipment tax break expansion.

Abbott’s proposal includes an offer of tax rebates for sending a child to a private school. For students in primary school, prep to grade 6, the rebate will rise to $500 Australian a year per student and families will be then able to claim 50% rebate up to $1000.

“We are expanding the rebate so it can be claimed for school fees and also for other educational costs such as tuition and special educational costs for children with, for instance, dyslexia,” Abbott said at a press conference in Brisbane.

Before the election was called, Gillard had aimed to pledge $220 million over four years to expand the current tax breaks to cover refunds each worth $390 for primary school uniforms and $779 for high school uniforms, as well as refunds for other school equipment like texts books and computers.

“We all know that uniforms can be an expensive part of sending kids to school, but this change, along with the existing refund for textbooks and computers, will help families with that cost,” stated Gillard.

An opposition spokesperson claimed that the “obvious flaw in Labor’s policy is that it only applies to stationery, computer expenses and uniforms […] You know as a parent that you need help for a whole range of expenses. Extra teachers for children with dyslexia or the costs of doing music and all the other expenses like excursions and so forth.”

The expansion is expected to cost $760 million in total and one that Abbott claims needs to happen as “cost of living pressures tend to be greatest when your kids are at school”.

Unusual Background Checks From Temecula To Timbuktu}

April 3, 2019 0

in Earthmoving Equipment @ 2:25 am




Ive been doing background checks for a living since 1994 and shortly thereafter started doing international checks. Over the years I have had many unusual requests for information about people and companies as well as many unusual results of our searches. Some of the requests were unusual and some of the results are tragic. I write this to give you an insight to the interesting, unusual and sometimes humorous work that I do.

Here are a few of my favorite stories.

The Oxford PhD.

A longtime client asked us to check an existing young employee who was being promoted and transferred within the company. This employee was required to update her vital info on an application form. On the form she indicated that she had a PhD in international human resources from Oxford University THE Oxford in the UK. The employer thought that it was odd that she didnt mention that when she applied for a $7 hr. ad sales job two years earlier. The client asked us to check it out.

They faxed over the info and I took a look at the application and within a few seconds I knew that the applicant was lying. I called the client and told them that I would save them the price of an international check, I know shes lying. I said. How can you tell? they asked. Because she said that she attended Lady Margaret Hall (college) at Oxford and she spelled Margaret wrong. Anyone with a PhD from Oxford wouldnt spell the name of the college wrong. Of course we went through the motions and called Oxford and we found that LMH doesnt offer human resource degrees. She should have picked another college at Oxford to lie about. Think about this one. She already had the promotion, and she still lied.

The Nanny From Uganda

This one happened just recently. A woman from New York called and asked if we could do a criminal check on a man from Uganda that she was planning to hire as a nanny for her infant child. I asked her, Why? She asked me what I meant by why? I told her, Why on earth would you hire someone from a place where there is no rule of law, where any criminal check I could obtain is not worth the paper it is written on and where this person is from a region of the world that is the home of AIDS. What are you thinking? I asked. I was being polite. I really thought she was out of her mind. Now, I know that what I said was not politically correct, but it is the truth. She said, Maybe youre right. I got the feeling that I was the first sensible, practical person that she had spoken to on the subject. I should have charged her for the avuncular advice instead of the criminal check, but hey, Im a nice guy.

The Pool Digger

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A fellow from a local pool company ordered a check on an employee that he had already hired and put to work digging pools with a backhoe. At the time, our office was in Temecula, California and the new employee was digging pools in Palm Springs which is about two hours away. It took a couple of days to get the hand searched records from Utah where the worker had previously lived and to our astonishment the employee was wanted for escaping from jail in a rural county in Utah. He was also a registered sex offender in Utah. It is important to note that this happened in 1995 before we were using the internet. Everything was done by phone and fax and was much slower.

I called the client right away with the big news. Now normally, we provide the information and it is the clients responsibility to act on it. I offered to figure out what the client should do with this dangerous employee. I asked an assistant of mine if her husband, who was a Riverside County Deputy Sheriff, could drive to Palm Springs and arrest him. We found out that it doesnt work that way. They have to serve a warrant from the jurisdiction in Utah and that could take days. I thought the deputy could get an extra credit or something for arresting a wanted bad guy. I guess I watch too much TV.

I then called the District Attorneys office in rural Utah, but there was no answer to my call. I then called the Sheriffs office in that Utah County and talked to the Sheriff. (Think Andy of Mayberry here.) I told him that I called the DAs office, but there was no answer. He told me that they were all out fishing. I asked him if he knew the pool digger and he said that he did. I said, Well come and get him. Hes in Palm Springs. Ill get the address for you. To which he replied, We dont want him. If hes in Palm Springs he ain’t bothering anybody here. You cant do that, I said. The hell I cant, he said. He then proceeded to tell me that they were a small county and that the extradition would take a mountain of paperwork, (which he was not inclined to do) then they would have to send someone to California to pick-up the prisoner, haul his sorry a** back to Utah then the county would have to pay to keep him in jail for the next few years. In fact, he was doing the county a big favor and saving them a bundle of money by not getting him.

Meanwhile my client, the pool company, is in a panic. Remember that this is before we were on the internet. I got directory assistance and found the Utah Countys only bail bondsman. I called and asked if they were looking for this pool digger. They were. The bail bondsman in Utah asked for the address where the pool digger was working and said, Well have some guys pick him up in about 2 hours.

I cant tell you how many times that the story above has been instructional to me. It is the epitome of government vs. private sector. Government moves glacially slow at great expense with mountains of paperwork, while the private sector gets the job done better, faster, cheaper.

The Wanted Murderer

We did a criminal check for a client that hired dozens of people per month. The client operated a call center and we quickly learned that for some reason telemarketers have a disproportionate amount of criminal records compared to the general population. Imagine that.

The record came back for an applicant that we were checking and low and behold, the person was wanted in Los Angeles County for murder. I called the client right away to inform her. She said that it was odd that I called at that moment because he, the applicant, was waiting in the outer office to see her. She was truly afraid.

I called the police in her town and explained the situation and they told me to tell the client that it would take a while to process the warrant; that she should stall him and let him go home, thinking that he would start work in a couple of days and that they would arrest him at home over the weekend so as not to put anyone in danger at the clients office. By the way; the police had to ask me for the mans address so they could go and arrest him.

The Ballistic Nurse

This happened on the day of the bloody glove in the OJ Simpson trial, June 15, 1995, a day I will always remember.

We were background checking a nurse for a hospital in Southern California. The LA County Superior Court sent us wrong criminal information on the criminal search. They did a name search, but did not cross check date of birth or Social Security number and reported that the subject of our criminal check was a drug dealing prostitute who had several arrests and convictions. We subsequently reported this wrong information to our client. (FYI: this is the only documented case of my company making a mistake in a criminal history report.) When the nurse applicant had her offer of employment rescinded she went ballistic. The client later told me that he was screaming, ranting, raving, cursing and threatening lawsuits on everyone.

We immediately reinvestigated the records and quickly found the error. Still, even though we were wrong, the client did not want to hire the nurse. She had shown her true colors by ranting and raving and screaming. She had been escorted out by security and in no uncertain terms, they didnt want her in the hospital ever again. The client asked us if there wasnt something else we could find to give them legal terms to rescind her offer of employment. We dug a little deeper and found that she had in fact stretched her record of employment to cover a 90 day employment at another hospital where she was fired. Because she lied by omission on her application the offer was rescinded.


Let me say first off that I have always wanted to do a background check in Timbuktu just so that I could truthfully say that we have checked out people everywhere from Temecula to Timbuktu. This happened just a couple of weeks ago and prompted the writing of this article. A gentleman emailed and asked if we could check out a person and his company in Timbuktu, Mali in West Africa.

If you are not familiar with Timbuktu, it is a real place on the south west edge of the Sahara Desert and surely one of the most remote places on earth. Think French Foreign Legion desert outpost with camel caravans passing through. I read somewhere that it recently boasted of 400 telephones and 2 internet lines. Wow!

I told the client that since we have never done anything in Mali that I would have to check and see what is available and how long it would take, etc. I am one of the few experts in the USA on international background checks. People contact me all the time asking how to get records from far away places. When, even I cant figure out how to get records from somewhere I call the local US embassy in that country. We can usually figure things out from there.

I cant say anything more specific about this case, but I can say that we were surprisingly able to get quality information quickly and uncovered another West African internet scam involving gold dust and probably saved the client tens of thousands of dollars.

The Good Looker

One client ordered a criminal and a credit check on each new employee. We did a check on a new employee and about a month later that employee called me and said that she was the new Human Resources Director. She was going over the policies and procedures and wanted to ask me about background checks. She asked me if doing a credit report was worth the cost and What can you really tell from a credit report?

I said, Let me tell you about you. I was doing this purely by memory from her report a month earlier. I said, You are single, approximately 31 years old, you are a college graduate, you are from New England originally, you live in a rented condo, you drive a modestly priced Toyota or Nissan and you are good looking. She said, Now wait a minute how can you tell all that? I explained that most of it was educated guessing on my part, but I saw no spouse listed, I saw student loans, a SS# that started with 1, auto loans and the numbers on her address told me that she lived in a condo. What about the good looking part? she asked, Theres no way you can tell that from a credit report. I said that I noticed that she had a credit card with a $1000 line of credit at Victorias Secret and I know that, as a rule, ugly women dont shop there; therefore you must be good looking.

Kit Fremin is the owner and founder of Background Check International. Since 1994 BCI has served clients as varied as: the LA Times, Department of Defense, Mars, Inc., the UN, the NTSB and Calvary Chapels nationwide. His website is: and he can be e-mailed at

Article Source:

UNUSUAL BACKGROUND CHECKS From Temecula to Timbuktu}

UK study reveals smoking could shorten men’s lives by 10–15 years

April 2, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:01 am

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A study carried out in the United Kingdom revealed that the life expectancy for men could be reduced by 10–15 years after the age of 50 due to smoking.

The British Medical Journal carried out a study over a time period of 38 years in the United Kingdom which examined the health of 19,000 men aged 40–69. They were examined between 1967–1970. After tracing the history of the men, the survey revealed that smoking, high blood pressure and high cholesterol reduced the life expectancy of men by 10–15 years after they reached the age of 50. The research was published on the BMJ‘s website on Friday.

The researchers from the University of Oxford in England were focussing on smoking, high blood pressure and cholesterol due to the fact that they are the main cardiovascular risk factors. Dr. Robert Clarke from the university said: “We’ve shown that men at age 50 who smoke, have high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels can expect to survive to 74 years of age, while those who have none of these risk factors can expect to live until 83. It is precisely this kind of very prolonged follow-up study that is necessary to get these results — that modest differences in heart risk factors can accurately predict significant differences in life expectancy.”

“The results give people another way of looking at heart disease risk factors that can be understood more readily. If you stop smoking or take measures to deal with high blood pressure or body weight, it will translate into increased life expectancy.”


April 1, 2019 0

in Uncategorized @ 2:24 am

This is the category for Education.

Refresh this list to see the latest articles.

  • 23 June 2018: Algeria blocks internet across nation to prevent cheating in diploma exams
  • 19 May 2018: Principal, teacher arrested for allegedly whipping two students late for school in Ayetoro, Nigeria
  • 25 April 2018: India: Jammu and Kashmir government orders private tuitions to shut down for 90 days
  • 26 January 2018: United States: Two dead in Kentucky high school shooting
  • 20 October 2017: Arrangement of light receptors in the eye may cause dyslexia, scientists say
  • 21 January 2016: Detroit teachers stage sickout to protest working conditions as Obama visits
  • 28 October 2015: Time magazine names Ahmed Mohamed to ‘Most Influential Teens of 2015’
  • 23 October 2015: Masked man kills two in sword attack at Swedish school
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  • 22 September 2015: Texas student Ahmed Mohamed inspires social movement

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British soldier jailed for 10 years for spying for Iran


in Uncategorized @ 2:06 am

Friday, November 28, 2008

An Iranian-born British soldier has been jailed for ten years after being convicted of “communicating information useful to an enemy”. Forty-five year-old Daniel James from Brighton had been the personal translator for the head of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, General Sir David Richards.

After joining the Territorial Army, Britain’s army reserve, James was sent to Afghanistan in May 2006. He was arrested in December 2006, two months after he made contact with Colonel Mohammed Hossein Heydari, an Iranian military attaché in Kabul. The court heard allegations that James believed he had been denied promotion because of racism and jealousy, and also that he had debts of £25,000 and had mortgages on four properties in Brighton.

The jury at London’s Central Criminal Court was unable to agree on verdicts on two other charges under the Official Secrets Act, relating to his possession of sensitive documents on a USB memory stick, and a second of misconduct in a public office.

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