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Sherman A1

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Gender: Male
Current location: U.S.
Member since: Sat May 13, 2006, 07:37 AM
Number of posts: 34,098

Journal Archives

In Response To High Profile Case, McCaskill Drafting Legislation On Sexual Assault In Military

As many as 19,000 service members are sexually assaulted each year. A small fraction of those cases -- around 2,500 a year -- are actually reported, and a much smaller fraction are prosecuted.

The Senate Armed Services held a hearing on sexual assaults in the military, following a high profile case in which Lt. Col. James Wilkerson was convicted by a military jury of "abusive sexual contact." After the trial and conviction, a Lieutenant General dismissed the charges, without having to provide an explanation.

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill has said that the appearances of this case are devastating to other victims of sexual assault in the military, and that it appears as though "somebody (was) taking care of one of their guys."

In response, McCaskill has announced she is drafting legislation to change the Uniform Code of Military Justice to prohibit commanders from nullifying a guilty verdict by a jury, and would require a written justification for commuting or lessening a sentence.


Editorial: Missouri Senate blames unions for economic woes. Oh, please.

For those of you wondering who could possibly be blamed for the moribund economy all of us in Missouri and the nation suffered through in recent years, worry not.

The Missouri Senate has found the culprit. It’s public employees.

It’s those absurdly high-paid teachers, nurses, janitors, secretaries, pothole fixers and home health care workers.

Early Tuesday morning, while some of those workers were helping roll over your grandma or grandpa at the nursing home so they didn’t get bed sores, the Republicans who lead the state Senate set things right. They gave initial approval to a bill that will make it a little harder for the unions that represent those public employees to collect fees that might be used to elect thoughtful people to elected office.


Mo. Senate panel votes to end renters' tax break

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Despite pleas from the poor not to do so, a Senate budget panel voted Tuesday to do away with a longtime tax break for low-income seniors and disabled residents who live in rented homes.

The legislation backed by Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon and Republican Senate leaders would eliminate a tax credit for about 104,000 low-income renters while leaving it in place for a slightly larger pool of homeowners. The $57 million in savings from the abolished tax break would be redirected to mental health care, nursing homes and home-based health and living services that could benefit the disabled and seniors.

The bill, which now goes to the full Senate, would implement a recommendation from a tax-credit review commission appointed by Nixon. That panel said the income tax break, which is intended to partially offset local property taxes, is not as necessary for renters because there is not enough evidence that landlords pass on the full cost of property taxes to renters.

But recipients of the tax break testified Tuesday that it helps them pay for utilities, medical bills, clothing and other daily living expenses.


Four Arrested After Gun Incident At Normandy High School

WELLSTON, MO. (KTVI) – The mother of a Normandy High School student saw people exchanging guns in the school parking lot Tuesday afternoon, according to the Wellston Police Department.

Four people, who were inside two vehicles, were arrested and police said they found two guns in the vehicles.

“We are not sure what the plan was, but we believe something bad could have happened,” Wellston Police Department Sgt. Marvin Berry said.

At least two of them are Normandy students.


Twinkies Due on Shelves by Summer as $410 Million Bid OK'd

Twinkies and other Hostess snacks could be back on shelves by this summer after a successful $410 million bid for the business.

The winning bid is a joint venture by private equity firms Apollo Global Management (APO) and Metropoulos & Co. A statement from Dean Metropoulos, founder of one of the firms, confirmed they are the winning bidder.

"Our family is thrilled to have the opportunity to reestablish these iconic brands with new creative marketing ideas and renewed sales efforts and investment," said Metropoulos. "We look forward to having America's favorite snacks back on the shelf by this summer. We are also ecstatic to bring jobs back to many cities across the country."

The bankruptcy court had been set to have an auction among qualified bidders on Thursday, but Hostess notified the court late Monday that no other qualified bids had been submitted. That means the $410 million bid wins by default with no further approval of the court being required.


Weak economy to depress oil demand throughout 2013: IEA

LONDON (Reuters) - Global oil demand is set to be depressed by weak economic growth throughout 2013 while soaring U.S. oil production gives consumers a perfect cushion to withstand most supply outages, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Wednesday.

"The oil producing world today is in the midst of a once in a generation transition of far reaching consequences," the IEA, which coordinates energy policies of major consuming nations, said.

"Rarely has the market's ability to withstand crisis been so tested as in the two years since the start of the so called Arab Spring. Yet the market seems to have taken it all - civil uprisings, terrorist attacks, natural disasters, production outages, trade embargoes - in its stride," it added.

The IEA expects non OPEC supply to grow by 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2013 to 54.5 million bpd led by North American booming shale oil output.


So will pump prices come down?

IPhone Eyed by Small Carriers Backing Unlocked Devices

Small wireless carriers see a new path to scoring users of Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iPhone and other popular handsets: the legalization of unlocking mobile devices.

Regional and rural wireless providers are backing several bills in Congress that would let consumers unlock mobile phones and tablet computers without carriers’ permission. Big phone companies often land exclusive rights to offer the hottest devices, and U.S. rules currently prohibit altering software to let new phones from one carrier to work on other networks.

“Smaller carriers have a very difficult time getting access to smartphones and handsets,” said Steven Berry, president of the Competitive Carriers Association, which represents such companies as U.S. Cellular Corp. (USM) and Bluegrass Cellular. “The unlocking is one way the consumer can make the decision that I can try someone else who has better coverage in the area where I live or play.”

The Washington-based trade group is seeking to undo a Library of Congress decision, backed by largest U.S. mobile providers Verizon Wireless and AT&T Inc. (T), barring consumers from unlocking their handsets without their carrier’s approval. The rules change, which took effect Jan. 26, reversed an earlier exemption under copyright law.


Pentagon weapons-maker finds method for cheap, clean water

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A defense contractor better known for building jet fighters and lethal missiles says it has found a way to slash the amount of energy needed to remove salt from seawater, potentially making it vastly cheaper to produce clean water at a time when scarcity has become a global security issue.

The process, officials and engineers at Lockheed Martin Corp say, would enable filter manufacturers to produce thin carbon membranes with regular holes about a nanometer in size that are large enough to allow water to pass through but small enough to block the molecules of salt in seawater. A nanometer is a billionth of a meter.

Because the sheets of pure carbon known as graphene are so thin - just one atom in thickness - it takes much less energy to push the seawater through the filter with the force required to separate the salt from the water, they said.

The development could spare underdeveloped countries from having to build exotic, expensive pumping stations needed in plants that use a desalination process called reverse osmosis.


Celebrate World Plumbing Day - March 11

World Plumbing Day is an international event on March 11 initiated by the World Plumbing Council celebrating the important role plumbing plays in the health and safety of modern society.

The aftermath of 2010’s devastating earthquake in Haiti and the 2011 tsunami in Japan reveals how easy it is to take for granted the availability of safe drinking water and sufficient sanitation systems — until those systems cease to function properly. History shows that great leaps in humankind’s advancement — both physically and socially — have been tied to advances in plumbing technology.

The safety and abundance of drinking water is, of course, a concern for most people all over the world, but what is not often emphasized is the work the plumbing industry contributes every day to alleviate these concerns. We would like your help in bringing a better understanding of the largely misunderstood role plumbers play in keeping folks safe and healthy each and every day.

We look forward to seeing your participation in this worthwhile event. Below is an important message from WPC Chairman GP Russ Chaney.


Hostess creditor, PE firms show interest in Twinkies brand: NY Post

(Reuters) - Hostess Brands Inc creditor Silver Point Capital and hedge fund Hurst Capital have expressed interest in buying Hostess's snack cake brands, including Twinkies, the New York Post reported.

Silver Point Capital sent a letter to Hostess's bankers in the last few days expressing interest in buying all or part of the business, the Post said, citing a source. (http://r.reuters.com/jut56t)

Hurst Capital, which said in November it wanted to buy Hostess's business, has formed a partnership with other private-equity firms to make an offer, the Post said.

Hostess received permission late last year from a U.S. bankruptcy court to wind down its business and liquidate its assets after 82 years.

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