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Archive for December 21, 2017

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Washington – ‘Obamacare’ Surprise: Strong Showing As Nearly 9M Sign Up

December 21, 2017 at 11:30 PM
Washington - In a surprisingly strong show of consumer demand, nearly 9 million people signed up for "Obamacare" next year, as government numbers out Thursday proved predictions of its collapse wrong yet again. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said more than 8.8 million people have signed up in the 39 states served by the federal HealthCare.gov website. That compares to 9.2...

New York – Head Of NYC Public School System Retiring In Coming Months

December 21, 2017 at 11:01 PM
New York - The head of the nation's largest public school system says she will retire in the coming months. Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina (fah-REEN'-yah) said Thursday that she's proud of her four years leading the nation's largest public school system. The school system has 1.1 million students. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Farina's impending retirement at City Hall. He said "people...

Geneva – Online, But Can’t Ditch Paper? You May Be Future-proofing Yourself

December 21, 2017 at 10:41 PM
Geneva - You're on the web, you're in the cloud. But don't neglect good old-fashioned paper. That's the advice from internet pioneer Vint Cerf, who is afraid that all our digital memories could be lost as technology moves on. "People say: 'What should I do about my photographs?' The ones you really care about? Find some really good quality photographic paper and print them, because we know...

Washington – State Department Tells Refugee Agencies To Downsize U.S. Operations

December 21, 2017 at 10:03 PM
Washington - The U.S. State Department has told refugee agencies it will sharply pare back the number of offices across the country authorized to resettle people in 2018 as President Donald Trump cuts the number of refugees allowed into the United States. The announcement was made at a Dec. 1 meeting in Washington with State Department officials and representatives from nine major refugee...

Seoul – 29 Die, 29 Injured In South Korean Building Fire

December 21, 2017 at 09:51 PM
Seoul - South Korea's government on Friday began investigating a fire that tore through an eight-floor building and killed 29 people in the central city of Jecheon in the country's deadliest blaze in nearly a decade. South Korean President Moon Jae-in was planning to visit the scene where police and government agencies, including the national fire agency and forensic service, launched a joint...

Tel Aviv – Bitcoin Fraud Could Be The Next Big Thing For Swindlers In Israel

December 21, 2017 at 09:00 PM
Tel Aviv - Israelis lined up Tuesday afternoon at the newly opened bitcoin exchange in this city to purchase the coveted cryptocurrency. Amid the store’s yellow signage, the customers one by one inserted bank cards into a towering ATM-like machine. Sharply dressed young employees helped them make the necessary online maneuvers to claim their new funds. Guy Maimon, a goateed 22-year-old...

United Nations – Trump Threat To Cut Aid Faces Credibility Test After UN Vote

December 21, 2017 at 08:32 PM
United Nations - After threatening to cut off nations that rebuked him over Jerusalem, President Donald Trump faces a key question about his global credibility: Will he follow through? Most of the world defied the United States on Thursday at the U.N., voting for a resolution that declares Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital to be "null and void." Only a day earlier, Trump had...

Washington – What Households Need To Know About The Tax Bill’s Impact

December 21, 2017 at 08:05 PM
Washington - Federal taxes can be confounding in any typical year. But the Republican-led Congress' mad dash to approve the most sweeping tax overhaul in three decades has left many households unsure of what changes might await them come Jan. 1 and what they should do — if anything — before or after then. Here are some things to know. ___ RATE CHANGE For individuals, the...

Toronto – Succession Doubts Cloud Apotex Future After Jewish Billionaire Owner’s Death

December 21, 2017 at 07:29 PM
Toronto - Canadian pharmaceuticals billionaire Barry Sherman failed to implement a succession plan at his Apotex business before his death last week, two business associates told Reuters, potentially leaving it vulnerable to takeover approaches. The bodies of Sherman, 75, and his wife Honey, 70, were found in their Toronto mansion last week and their deaths are under investigation by Toronto's...

London – British Appeals Court Rules For Transgender Woman Denied Contact With Her Haredi Children

December 21, 2017 at 07:00 PM
London - Britain’s Court of Appeal overturned a lower court ruling ordering a transgender woman not to see her five haredi Orthodox children. The court ruled Wednesday that “the best interests of these children seen in the medium to longer term is in more contact with their father if that can be achieved,” the Jewish Chronicle reported. “So strong are the interests of the children...

New York – In Victory For Trump, Judge Tosses Suit On Foreign Payments

December 21, 2017 at 06:31 PM
New York - Restaurant workers, a hotel event booker and a watchdog group who say President Donald Trump has business conflicts that violate the Constitution cannot sue him, a New York judge ruled Thursday. U.S. District Judge George Daniels said it was too soon for the lawsuit to be considered by the courts, particularly because Congress had not considered the issue. The lawsuit earlier...

Washington – Senators Seek To Stop Expansion Of Airport Facial Scans

December 21, 2017 at 06:00 PM
Washington - U.S. Senators from both major parties on Thursday urged federal authorities to halt planned expansion of a $1 billion airport facial scanning program, saying the technology used to vet travelers on departing international flights at nine airports may not be not accurate enough. Senators Mike Lee, a Utah Republican and Edward Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat, wrote U.S. Department...

Guantanamo Bay – Mattis Is 1st Pentagon Chief To Visit Guantanamo Since 2002

December 21, 2017 at 05:28 PM
Guantanamo Bay - On a rare visit to the home of the U.S. military's prison for terror suspects, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis offered a pep talk Thursday to American troops — and urged them to always be ready for war. "I need you to be at the top of your game," he told an assembly of several hundred troops, citing their roles both as a fighting force and as a positive example to a politically...

Jerusalem – Top US Aid Recipients Ignore White House Threat On UN Vote

December 21, 2017 at 04:56 PM
Jerusalem - Ahead of a dramatic vote at the United Nations on Thursday, the United States made an unprecedented threat to fellow members of the international community: those who vote against President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital risk diplomatic retaliation and losing American financial aid. But when the dust settled, the biggest recipients of American...

Kabul, Afghanistan – Pence Makes Surprise Visit To Afghanistan For War Meetings

December 21, 2017 at 04:22 PM
Kabul, Afghanistan - Cloaked in secrecy, Vice President Mike Pence made an unannounced trip to Afghanistan on Thursday to meet with Afghan leaders and visit U.S. troops, arriving four months after President Donald Trump outlined a new strategy to break the stalemate in America's longest war. Pence's surprise pre-Christmas visit was the first to the war-torn country by either Trump or the vice...

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