Web Net Info
   
Weather Contact Us Shoppers Guide Newspaper Links Governments Polls Domain Registration

  School Board Home Page

     The School System has this main web site as a portal to all the other schools.  The left side of the front page contains buttons with the names of each school.  The buttons link to the web site of each school (i.e.. East Jefferson High School).  

     The web site is data base driven.  Each area has its own built-in editor to upload information, including pictures and graphics.  Each page has its own privacy user code.  The site provides full online user instructions.  Anyone with Microsoft Word experience can easily make additions and changes to all parts of the web site.

     This area can be used for any message or data.  The news below is optional, however it offers another reason for people to come to the web site.

     The right side of the front page can be used for placing advertisements.  Ads in this area, along with those below the web site title banner, are sold based on the number of people who visit the web site. 

     The "Shopper's Guide" section -- An online "yellow pages."

      The top area of the web site can accommodate as many informational pages as you may need.  Examples are the Superintendent Page, Budget, and Calendar of Events above. 

Older News Archivescom0116
NEWS   FRIDAY, DECEMBER  19, 2014   NEWS

Sony’s Surrender Will Strengthen Hackers
Sony’s shock decision to scrap the Dec. 25 release of its controversial movie “The Interview” will strengthen hackers, experts warn, fueling debilitating cyberattacks on other high-profile firms. Still reeling from a crippling Nov. 24 hack, Sony Pictures Entertainment announced Wednesday that it had canceled “The Interview’s” Christmas Day release after a number of movie chains said that they would not show the film. “The Interview,” which pokes fun at North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, is believed to have prompted last month’s devastating attack on the studio and subsequent threats to movie theaters. Sony’s shock decision to scrap the Dec. 25 release of its controversial movie “The Interview” will strengthen hackers, experts warn, fueling debilitating cyberattacks on other high-profile firms. Fox News

Rand Paul Breaks With Rubio And Bush Over Cuba
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is the latest potential presidential candidate to weigh in on policy changes to Cuba and the libertarian leaning Republican's position splits from other Republicans who are also considering a presidential run. Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo "just hasn't worked" and normalizing relations with the island nation is "probably a good idea." "If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn't seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship," he said. Potential challengers, Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio, both of Florida, denounced President Barack Obama's decision to open diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas also slammed the deal. MSNBC

Government Regulations Hamper Hiring, Economic Growth
American manufacturers are longing to invest and create new jobs to fuel American growth but are being held back by costly regulations coming from Washington and uncertainty about what lies ahead, the head of the nation’s biggest manufacturing trade group said. National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons said the regulatory burden that amounts to a $2.02 trillion charge on the U.S. economy was built up over several presidencies and by both parties, but Obama administration policies on taxes, health care and ozone and carbon emissions have only added to the problem. Washington Times

Rand Paul Breaks With Rubio And Bush Over Cuba
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is the latest potential presidential candidate to weigh in on policy changes to Cuba and the libertarian leaning Republican's position splits from other Republicans who are also considering a presidential run. Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo "just hasn't worked" and normalizing relations with the island nation is "probably a good idea." "If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn't seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship," he said. Potential challengers, Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio, both of Florida, denounced President Barack Obama's decision to open diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas also slammed the deal. MSNBC

Government Regulations Hamper Hiring, Economic Growth
American manufacturers are longing to invest and create new jobs to fuel American growth but are being held back by costly regulations coming from Washington and uncertainty about what lies ahead, the head of the nation’s biggest manufacturing trade group said. National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons said the regulatory burden that amounts to a $2.02 trillion charge on the U.S. economy was built up over several presidencies and by both parties, but Obama administration policies on taxes, health care and ozone and carbon emissions have only added to the problem. Washington Times

Oil-Led Slump Spurring Fastest Investor Exit From Commodities Since 2008
Investors are exiting commodities at the fastest pace in six years, betting a slump in prices isn’t over as corn, oil and gold drop close to their cost of production. Open interest in raw-material futures and options is down 6.5 percent since June, heading for the biggest second-half slump since 2008, exchange data show. U.S. exchange-traded products tracking metals, energy and agriculture saw net withdrawals of $169.4 million in 2014, marking the first two-year slump since the funds were created a decade ago. Commodities are under pressure from many sides. Collapsing oil prices are driving bearish sentiment because energy is used to produce or deliver almost everything, according to Societe Generale SA. Low inflation and higher interest rates create an “ugly scenario” for gold, says Bank of America Corp. And weaker currencies in countries that produce everything from soybeans to iron ore mean supplies will continue to climb, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. predicts. Bloomberg

Secret Service Needs Outsider As Leader
An external review of the Secret Service says the next director should be hired from outside the insular agency. The Homeland Security Department released an executive summary of the assessment on Thursday. The review was led by four former officials, two who served under President Barack Obama and two from the administration of former President George W. Bush. It was launched after a security breach at the White House in September. Many of the recommendations have been made in previous reviews of the agency but not carried out. The panel says some recommendations date back to the Warren Commission, which investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Las Vegas Sun

THANK YOU FOR VISITING OUR WEB PORTAL.  PLEASE TELL A FRIEND.

Government Regulations Hamper Hiring, Economic Growth
American manufacturers are longing to invest and create new jobs to fuel American growth but are being held back by costly regulations coming from Washington and uncertainty about what lies ahead, the head of the nation’s biggest manufacturing trade group said. National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons said the regulatory burden that amounts to a $2.02 trillion charge on the U.S. economy was built up over several presidencies and by both parties, but Obama administration policies on taxes, health care and ozone and carbon emissions have only added to the problem. Washington Time

High Schoolers Wise Up About Social Media When Applying For Colleges
High schoolers are increasingly aware that those embarrassing Facebook posts or tweets could cost them a shot at getting into their dream college. The test prep company Kaplan found that only 16 percent of the 403 colleges surveyed found anything troubling in the social media posts they viewed -- a drop from 50 percent a year ago. That decline comes as the survey found more colleges are factoring social media into the application process: 35 percent in the latest survey compared to only 9 percent six years ago. CBS

Fed Grants Banks Two-Year Delay of Volcker Ban On Private Funds
Banks got a reprieve from the Volcker Rule that will let them hold onto billions of dollars in private-equity investments for at least two more years. The Federal Reserve granted the delay today after banks said selling the stakes quickly might force them to accept discount prices. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. has $7 billion invested in private equity, while Morgan Stanley has $2.5 billion, according to securities filings. The extension to July 2017 will let the banks get out of their investments “in an orderly manner,” the Fed said in its order. It will “reduce the potential disruptive effects that significant divestitures of covered funds could have on markets,” the order said. Bloomberg

Nigerian Extremists Kill 35, Kidnap 185 In Raid
Islamic extremists killed 35 people and kidnapped at least 185 in an attack near the town where nearly 300 schoolgirls were taken hostage in April, witnesses said Thursday. In Sunday night's attack on the village of Gumburi, most of the kidnapped were young women, children, and members of a civilian defense group fighting Boko Haram, according to residents, a security official, and a local government officer. Teenager Aji Ibrahim said he was lucky to escape into the bushes. "No doubt they were Boko Haram members because they were chanting 'Allahu akbar' [God is great] while shooting at people and torching houses," he said. Philadelphia Inquirer

De Blasio ‘Thinks He’s Running A F–ing Revolution’: PBA Chief
Mayor de Blasio acts more like the leader of “a f-?-king revolution” than a city, police-union President Pat Lynch said at a recent delegate meeting. “He is not running the City of New York. He thinks he’s running a f-?-king revolution,” said Lynch, head of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, during the private gathering in Queens last Friday. Lynch, who was secretly recorded, also all but ordered a rule-book slowdown, according to the seven-minute tape obtained by Capital New York. “If we won’t get support when we do our jobs .?.?. then we’re going to do it the way they want it,” Lynch said. “Let me be perfectly clear: We will use extreme discretion in every encounter.” NY Post

Two More Air-Bag Accidents On Undelivered Boeing Jets Have Workers Concerned
Two new seat-belt air-bag accidents on Boeing airplanes being prepared for delivery have raised safety concerns among workers after an air bag incident last month killed a worker. Last month, a passenger-seat air-bag inflator accidentally discharged during installation inside a 777 jet on the Everett flight line, injuring two people, one of whom later died of head injuries. No one was seriously hurt Saturday when an air bag deployed while workers from seat supplier Zodiac Aerospace were troubleshooting the system on a business-class seat inside a 787 Dreamliner for Etihad Airways of Abu Dhabi. Boeing spokesman Wilson Chow confirmed that there have been three air-bag incidents, but had information about only two of them. Seattle Times

Americans Skeptical Of Commercial Drones
Americans are skeptical that the benefits of the heralded drone revolution will outweigh the risks to privacy and safety, although a majority approve of using small, unmanned aircraft for dangerous jobs or in remote areas, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll. By a 2-1 margin, those who had an opinion opposed using drones for commercial purposes. Only 21 percent favored commercial use of drones, compared with 43 percent opposed. Another 35 percent were in the middle. With a few narrow exceptions, the Federal Aviation Administration prohibits commercial use of drones but is about to propose regulations that will broaden the use of small ones. It may be two or three years before the rules take effect, but once they do thousands are expected to buzz U.S. skies. Tampa Tribune

After Big Rally, Stocks Eye New Record Highs
The biggest two-day rally in three years has the Dow and S&P 500 within reach of new highs, just two days after being 5% off their Dec. 5 peak. What a difference two days makes. At the close of trading Tuesday, at what now looks like the peak of the stock market’s recent pessimism, both the Dow Jones industrial average and the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index were both sitting 5% below their respective Dec. 5 all-time closing highs. At the time, fear was in the air on Wall Street. There was talk of West Texas Intermediate crude tumbling as far as $40 a barrel and a possible currency crisis in Russia ushering in yet another financial crisis. Those worries pressed down on the market like a heavy weight. USAToday

German Researchers Discover A Flaw That Could Let Anyone Listen To Your Cell Calls.
German researchers have discovered security flaws that could let hackers, spies and criminals listen to private phone calls and intercept text messages on a potentially massive scale – even when cellular networks are using the most advanced encryption now available. The flaws, to be reported at a hacker conference in Hamburg this month, are the latest evidence of widespread insecurity on SS7, the global network that allows the world’s cellular carriers to route calls, texts and other services to each other. Experts say it’s increasingly clear that SS7, first designed in the 1980s, is riddled with serious vulnerabilities that undermine the privacy of the world’s billions of cellular customers. German researchers have discovered security flaws that could let hackers, spies and criminals listen to private phone calls and intercept text messages on a potentially massive scale – even when cellular networks are using the most advanced encryption now available. Washington Post

Half Of Dr. Oz’s Medical Advice Is Baseless Or Wrong
It’s not hard to understand what makes Dr. Oz so popular. Called “America’s doctor,” syndicated talk-show host Mehmet Oz speaks in a way anyone can understand. Medicine may be complex. But with Dr. Oz, clad in scrubs and crooning to millions of viewers about “miracles” and “revolutionary” breakthroughs, it’s often not. He somehow makes it fun. And people can’t get enough. “I haven’t seen a doctor in eight years,” the New Yorker quoted one viewer telling Oz. “I’m scared. You’re the only one I trust.” But is that trust misplaced? Or has Oz, who often peddles miracle cures for weight loss and other maladies, mortgaged medical veracity for entertainment value? Washington Post

‘Barack Obama, Formerly Of Somerville’ Wishes Gov. Deval Patrick Well On Live Radio
 “Barack Obama, formerly of Somerville” called in WGBH’s “Ask the Governor” segment to offer good wishes to outgoing Gov. Deval Patrick on Thursday. As they normally do on the segment, the governor and hosts Jim Braude and Margery Eagan took calls from the public. “Governor, this is Barack Obama, formerly of Somerville,” the caller, confirmed as President Obama, said. “I’ve got a few complaints about service in and around the neighborhood, but I’ve moved down South since that time.” “You’re kidding, Mr. President. Who is this impersonator? You’re very good,” Patrick said. Boston Globe

Britain Moves Closer To Allowing Women In Combat
Britain's defense minister said Friday that women should be allowed to serve in front-line army combat units, and he hopes the first will be joining within two years.
Defense Secretary Michael Fallon said roles in the armed forces "should be determined by ability and not gender." Fallon said he had ordered an 18-month review of the physical demands of combat and combat training to make sure female soldiers will not suffer long-term detrimental effects to their health. "I hope that, following further work on our training regimes and equipment, we can open up combat roles to women in 2016," he said. Houston Chronicle

In Spite Of Asia Advance, European Stocks Steady
European markets were largely subdued Friday, a day after a big rally in the wake of the U.S. Federal Reserve's reassurance it was in no hurry to hike interest rates. But shares of Sony Corp. dropped as a hacking scandal rocked its American movies unit. KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, Germany's DAX was down 0.6 percent 9,758 while the CAC-40 in France fell 0.5 percent to 4,228. The FTSE 100 index was 0.5 percent higher at 6,497. Wall Street was poised for a solid opening with Dow futures and the broader S&P 500 futures up 0.3 percent. RISK TURNAROUND: At the start of the week, investors were concerned by falling oil prices and what they said about the state of the world economy. The ensuing collapse in the value of the ruble also added to the cautious tone. However, since Wednesday, market optimism has recovered. Atlanta Journal

CERN Nuclear Physics Lab Admits Pakistan
The world's top particle physics lab has admitted Pakistan as an associate member. Rolf Heuer, director general of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, known as CERN, says he signed a document Friday in Islamabad in the presence of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that admits Pakistan if the government ratifies the associate membership. Heuer said in a statement Friday that Pakistan has been "a strong participant" in CERN research since the 1990s and bringing nations together in a peaceful quest for knowledge and education is an important part of the lab's mission. San Diego Union

Chrysler To Recall About 257K Ram Pickup Trucks
Chrysler is recalling nearly 257,000 older Ram pickup trucks because the rear axle can seize or the drive shaft can fall off. The recall covers Ram 1500 pickups from the 2005 model year. Chrysler says in documents posted Friday by U.S. safety regulators that the rear-axle pinion nut can come loose. That can cause problems that make the trucks spin out of control. The recall comes after an investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that began in June. The agency found 15 complaints, including seven drivers who reported that the wheels locked at speeds over 50 miles per hour. At the time, no crashes or injuries were reported. Charlotte Observer

Most States Unprepared To Handle Infectious Disease Outbreaks
Most states are not prepared to handle outbreaks of severe infectious diseases, according to a new report by the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “Outbreaks: Protecting Americans from Infectious Diseases” found that half the states and the District of Columbia scored five or lower out of a possible 10 on measures related to the prevention, diagnosis, detection and response to disease outbreaks. Maryland, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Vermont and Virginia led all states, each scoring eight out of 10. California, Delaware, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin were next, scoring seven out of 10. Kansas City Star

Family: We’ve Heard Nothing Of Man Hailed As Superspy For U.S. In Cuba
The family of a Cuban man believed to be Washington’s superspy in Havana says he has disappeared from prison without a trace — and if he was really flown to the United States as part of Wednesday’s historic rapprochement between Washington and Havana, they wish somebody would pick up a phone and let them know. “We are desperate because there is no official information,” said a distressed Odessa Trujillo by telephone from Havana on Thursday afternoon. “We don’t know if he arrived in the United States. The uncertainty is affecting us, we are older people.” Her 51-year-old son, Rolando Sarraff, is widely believed to be the spy that National Intelligence Director James Clapper called “the most highly valued intelligence asset on Cuban soil in American history,” who was released Wednesday in a spy swap at the heart of Wednesday’s historic announcement that Washington and Havana will resume diplomatic relations that ruptured five decades ago. Miami Herald

Democratic Lawmakers Warn Against Investment Rules In Trade Pacts
Some Democratic lawmakers have urged the U.S. administration to exclude foreign investment protections from major free trade agreements, warning they might undermine buffers against future financial crises and hurt public support for trade deals. Rules allowing foreign companies to sue host governments for unfair treatment have become contentious after recent high-profile cases, such as tobacco company Phillip Morris's challenge to Australia's plain packaging laws for cigarettes.
Senator Elizabeth Warren, a staunch advocate for tougher scrutiny of Wall Street, said such rules would expose "critical" U.S. financial regulations to challenge and dissuade policymakers from writing rules that impact foreign banks. Reuters

Gallons Of Water To End Drought
Eleven trillion gallons — that's the amount of water that NASA scientists say would be needed to replenish key California river basins in what they're calling the first-ever estimate of the water necessary to end an episode of drought. That 11 trillion gallons is the deficit in normal seasonal levels that NASA said a team found earlier this year in the Sacramento and San Joaquin river basins, using Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites. The GRACE data, presented Tuesday at the American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco, showed those river basins losing about 4 trillion gallons per year — more than state residents use annually, NASA said. MSNBC

White House Threatens ‘Proportional’ Response To North Korea Cyberattacks
The White House said Thursday that President Obama’s national-security team is considering a “proportional response” to the cyberattack on Sony Pictures, but stopped short of publicly blaming North Korea for the attack. “This is a matter that is still under investigation,” said White House press secretary Josh Earnest. “Before we start publicly speculating about a response, it’s appropriate that we allow the investigation to move forward.” He said Mr. Obama’s national-security advisers are “considering a range of options” in response to the attack, but are also mindful of “important strategic considerations.” Washington Times

Obama: Jeb Bush Has ‘Every Right’ to Run for President in 2016
President Obama says he “loves” the Bush family personally and that former Florida governor and possible 2016 presidential candidate Jeb Bush has “every right” to run in 2016. But he made sure to praise his former secretary of state as well, adding that Hillary Clinton would make an “excellent president.” “The Bush family, I love personally,” Obama told ABC “World News Tonight” anchor David Muir in an exclusive interview. “They are good people. Jeb's father, George H.W. has been here many times, in some cases with Jeb. And they are a great family, wonderful people. Obviously I have a lot of disagreements with Jeb and his brother on policy. But I think they have every right to do what they think is best.” ABC

 WE ACKNOWLEDGE AND THANK ALL OUR SOURCES FOR THEIR CONTRIBUTIONS IN MAKING US AMERICA'S NUMBER ONE NEWS & INFORMATION PORTAL.

Congress Again Buys Abrams Tanks The Army Doesn't Want
The new defense spending bill includes $120 million for tanks that the Army has repeatedly said it doesn't want. For three years, the Army in numerous Congressional hearings has pushed a plan that essentially would have suspended tank building and upgrades in the U.S. for the first time since World War II. The Army suggested that production lines could be kept open through foreign sales. Each time, Congress has pushed back. Last week, Congress won again in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015. Fox News

Watch Out World: North Korea Deep Into Cyber Warfare
North Korea is one of the world's poorest countries, seen as well behind most everyone when it comes to most technologies and much more. Hacking may not be one of them. Scant resources or not, a defector who once worked as a computer expert for the North Korean government says that it has a vast network of hackers devoted to cyberwarfare against perceived enemies of the Stalinist state. Jang Se-yul, who defected from North Korea seven years ago, told CNN that he thinks there are 1,800 cyberwarriors in the agency stationed around the world. But he says even the agents themselves don't know how many others work for the secretive group, called Bureau 121, whose mission is to "conduct cyberattacks against overseas and enemy states." CNN

The Debilitating Outbreak Sweeping The Americas
Its name means "bending over in pain." It has no treatment or vaccine. Its symptoms resemble Dengue fever. And it has infected more than 1 million people -- 155 of them fatally -- since spreading to the Americas one year ago. The mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus has long been diagnosed in travelers returning from countries in Asia and Africa, where the disease is widespread. But in December 2013, the first people infected by mosquitoes local to the region were reported on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin. This was the first outbreak of the debilitating disease in the Western Hemisphere, health officials said. CNN

After Obama’s Shift On Cuba, Some Say Iran Should Be Next
Shortly after President Obama announced his sweeping policy shift on Cuba, proponents of engagement with Iran said Tehran should get the same treatment. In a series of tweets, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) and its president, Trita Parsi, highlighted various remarks Obama made in his televised noon announcement and asked why they should not also apply to Iran. “What Obama has now courageously done on Cuba, he should also do on Iran,” tweeted Parsi. “The last 2 years of Obama’s presidency might just become the most exciting ones ...” “Just like with Cuba, positive movement on Iran can happen when President’s free from domestic restraints. And it will happen.” CNS News

Obama's Flight Expenses Alone Over $1.1 Million For CA Fundraising In October
President Barack Obama’s fundraising trips in October to cities in California cost taxpayers a total of $1,176,120.90 in flight expenses alone, according to records obtained from the U.S. Department of the Air Force by the investigative group Judicial Watch. “On October 9, Obama attended a fundraiser party hosted by Hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow in Los Angeles,” states Judicial Watch. “He also attended a closed-door ‘roundtable’ fundraiser at the home of restaurateur Michael Chow. A second event shielded from the public was scheduled for October 11 in San Francisco.” Judicial Watch submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Department of the Air Force on Oct.  20, 2014 and received the records on Dec. 8, 2014. They showed that the transportation for Obama to Los Angeles on Oct. 9 for the Gwyneth Paltrow fundraiser cost taxpayers $1,011,051.30 and the transportation to San Francisco on Oct. 10 for the secret fundraiser cost taxpayers $165,069.60. CNS News

Ford Expands Takata Driver-Side Air Bag Recall In U.S.
Ford Motor Co on Thursday expanded the recall of older-model Mustang cars that have driver-side Takata air bags with inflators, to include about 502,500 vehicles.
Ford was one of five automakers asked by U.S. regulator National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last month to expand a recall of vehicles with possibly defective driver-side Takata Corp air bags beyond a limited area with high humidity. Takata has said that extended exposure to high humidity could cause the inflators to malfunction, causing metal shrapnel to be launched at vehicle occupants when these air bags inflate. Reuters

Rand Paul Breaks With Rubio And Bush Over Cuba
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is the latest potential presidential candidate to weigh in on policy changes to Cuba and the libertarian leaning Republican's position splits from other Republicans who are also considering a presidential run. Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo "just hasn't worked" and normalizing relations with the island nation is "probably a good idea." "If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn't seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship," he said. Potential challengers, Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio, both of Florida, denounced President Barack Obama's decision to open diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas also slammed the deal. MSNBC

A Post-Election Flurry: Obama Tests His Powers
President Barack Obama is using a streak of recent activism to shake up the governing status quo and create a new normal for his successors. Obama has taken aggressive steps on immigration, Internet access, climate change and Cuba. With them, he is laying down a foundation that while fragile and subject to change is defining how he enters the final two years of his presidency and what he leaves for the next White House occupant. Aides and advisers say that even if Obama's actions can be undone, he is giving the public a taste of change that would be difficult to reverse. His actions have also exposed cracks in the Republican Party, particularly on immigration and his new Cuba outreach. Las Vegas Sun

Congress Again Buys Abrams Tanks The Army Doesn't Want
The new defense spending bill includes $120 million for tanks that the Army has repeatedly said it doesn't want. For three years, the Army in numerous Congressional hearings has pushed a plan that essentially would have suspended tank building and upgrades in the U.S. for the first time since World War II. The Army suggested that production lines could be kept open through foreign sales. Each time, Congress has pushed back. Last week, Congress won again in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015. Fox News

Watch Out World: North Korea Deep Into Cyber Warfare
North Korea is one of the world's poorest countries, seen as well behind most everyone when it comes to most technologies and much more. Hacking may not be one of them. Scant resources or not, a defector who once worked as a computer expert for the North Korean government says that it has a vast network of hackers devoted to cyberwarfare against perceived enemies of the Stalinist state. Jang Se-yul, who defected from North Korea seven years ago, told CNN that he thinks there are 1,800 cyberwarriors in the agency stationed around the world. But he says even the agents themselves don't know how many others work for the secretive group, called Bureau 121, whose mission is to "conduct cyberattacks against overseas and enemy states." CNN

The Debilitating Outbreak Sweeping The Americas
Its name means "bending over in pain." It has no treatment or vaccine. Its symptoms resemble Dengue fever. And it has infected more than 1 million people -- 155 of them fatally -- since spreading to the Americas one year ago. The mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus has long been diagnosed in travelers returning from countries in Asia and Africa, where the disease is widespread. But in December 2013, the first people infected by mosquitoes local to the region were reported on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin. This was the first outbreak of the debilitating disease in the Western Hemisphere, health officials said. CNN

After Obama’s Shift On Cuba, Some Say Iran Should Be Next
Shortly after President Obama announced his sweeping policy shift on Cuba, proponents of engagement with Iran said Tehran should get the same treatment. In a series of tweets, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) and its president, Trita Parsi, highlighted various remarks Obama made in his televised noon announcement and asked why they should not also apply to Iran. “What Obama has now courageously done on Cuba, he should also do on Iran,” tweeted Parsi. “The last 2 years of Obama’s presidency might just become the most exciting ones ...” “Just like with Cuba, positive movement on Iran can happen when President’s free from domestic restraints. And it will happen.” CNS News

Obama's Flight Expenses Alone Over $1.1 Million For CA Fundraising In October
President Barack Obama’s fundraising trips in October to cities in California cost taxpayers a total of $1,176,120.90 in flight expenses alone, according to records obtained from the U.S. Department of the Air Force by the investigative group Judicial Watch. “On October 9, Obama attended a fundraiser party hosted by Hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow in Los Angeles,” states Judicial Watch. “He also attended a closed-door ‘roundtable’ fundraiser at the home of restaurateur Michael Chow. A second event shielded from the public was scheduled for October 11 in San Francisco.” Judicial Watch submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Department of the Air Force on Oct.  20, 2014 and received the records on Dec. 8, 2014. They showed that the transportation for Obama to Los Angeles on Oct. 9 for the Gwyneth Paltrow fundraiser cost taxpayers $1,011,051.30 and the transportation to San Francisco on Oct. 10 for the secret fundraiser cost taxpayers $165,069.60. CNS News

Ford Expands Takata Driver-Side Air Bag Recall In U.S.
Ford Motor Co on Thursday expanded the recall of older-model Mustang cars that have driver-side Takata air bags with inflators, to include about 502,500 vehicles.
Ford was one of five automakers asked by U.S. regulator National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last month to expand a recall of vehicles with possibly defective driver-side Takata Corp air bags beyond a limited area with high humidity. Takata has said that extended exposure to high humidity could cause the inflators to malfunction, causing metal shrapnel to be launched at vehicle occupants when these air bags inflate. Reuters

The Debilitating Outbreak Sweeping The Americas
Its name means "bending over in pain." It has no treatment or vaccine. Its symptoms resemble Dengue fever. And it has infected more than 1 million people -- 155 of them fatally -- since spreading to the Americas one year ago. The mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus has long been diagnosed in travelers returning from countries in Asia and Africa, where the disease is widespread. But in December 2013, the first people infected by mosquitoes local to the region were reported on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin. This was the first outbreak of the debilitating disease in the Western Hemisphere, health officials said. CNN

After Obama’s Shift On Cuba, Some Say Iran Should Be Next
Shortly after President Obama announced his sweeping policy shift on Cuba, proponents of engagement with Iran said Tehran should get the same treatment. In a series of tweets, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) and its president, Trita Parsi, highlighted various remarks Obama made in his televised noon announcement and asked why they should not also apply to Iran. “What Obama has now courageously done on Cuba, he should also do on Iran,” tweeted Parsi. “The last 2 years of Obama’s presidency might just become the most exciting ones ...” “Just like with Cuba, positive movement on Iran can happen when President’s free from domestic restraints. And it will happen.” CNS News

Obama's Flight Expenses Alone Over $1.1 Million For CA Fundraising In October
President Barack Obama’s fundraising trips in October to cities in California cost taxpayers a total of $1,176,120.90 in flight expenses alone, according to records obtained from the U.S. Department of the Air Force by the investigative group Judicial Watch. “On October 9, Obama attended a fundraiser party hosted by Hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow in Los Angeles,” states Judicial Watch. “He also attended a closed-door ‘roundtable’ fundraiser at the home of restaurateur Michael Chow. A second event shielded from the public was scheduled for October 11 in San Francisco.” Judicial Watch submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the Department of the Air Force on Oct.  20, 2014 and received the records on Dec. 8, 2014. They showed that the transportation for Obama to Los Angeles on Oct. 9 for the Gwyneth Paltrow fundraiser cost taxpayers $1,011,051.30 and the transportation to San Francisco on Oct. 10 for the secret fundraiser cost taxpayers $165,069.60. CNS News

Ford Expands Takata Driver-Side Air Bag Recall In U.S.
Ford Motor Co on Thursday expanded the recall of older-model Mustang cars that have driver-side Takata air bags with inflators, to include about 502,500 vehicles.
Ford was one of five automakers asked by U.S. regulator National Highway Traffic Safety Administration last month to expand a recall of vehicles with possibly defective driver-side Takata Corp air bags beyond a limited area with high humidity. Takata has said that extended exposure to high humidity could cause the inflators to malfunction, causing metal shrapnel to be launched at vehicle occupants when these air bags inflate. Reuters

Rand Paul Breaks With Rubio And Bush Over Cuba
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is the latest potential presidential candidate to weigh in on policy changes to Cuba and the libertarian leaning Republican's position splits from other Republicans who are also considering a presidential run. Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo "just hasn't worked" and normalizing relations with the island nation is "probably a good idea." "If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn't seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship," he said. Potential challengers, Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio, both of Florida, denounced President Barack Obama's decision to open diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas also slammed the deal. MSNBC

A Post-Election Flurry: Obama Tests His Powers
President Barack Obama is using a streak of recent activism to shake up the governing status quo and create a new normal for his successors. Obama has taken aggressive steps on immigration, Internet access, climate change and Cuba. With them, he is laying down a foundation that while fragile and subject to change is defining how he enters the final two years of his presidency and what he leaves for the next White House occupant. Aides and advisers say that even if Obama's actions can be undone, he is giving the public a taste of change that would be difficult to reverse. His actions have also exposed cracks in the Republican Party, particularly on immigration and his new Cuba outreach. Las Vegas Sun

ATTENTION TALK SHOW HOSTS:We are honored that many radio talk show hosts use our Web Portal for their "show prep."  We would appreciate your occasional mention of our site to your audience.  Thanks!

Rand Paul Breaks With Rubio And Bush Over Cuba
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul is the latest potential presidential candidate to weigh in on policy changes to Cuba and the libertarian leaning Republican's position splits from other Republicans who are also considering a presidential run. Paul told Tom Roten of News Talk 800 in West Virginia that the 50-year embargo "just hasn't worked" and normalizing relations with the island nation is "probably a good idea." "If the goal is regime change, it sure doesn't seem to be working and probably it punishes the people more than the regime because the regime can blame the embargo for hardship," he said. Potential challengers, Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio, both of Florida, denounced President Barack Obama's decision to open diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas also slammed the deal. MSNBC

A Post-Election Flurry: Obama Tests His Powers
President Barack Obama is using a streak of recent activism to shake up the governing status quo and create a new normal for his successors. Obama has taken aggressive steps on immigration, Internet access, climate change and Cuba. With them, he is laying down a foundation that while fragile and subject to change is defining how he enters the final two years of his presidency and what he leaves for the next White House occupant. Aides and advisers say that even if Obama's actions can be undone, he is giving the public a taste of change that would be difficult to reverse. His actions have also exposed cracks in the Republican Party, particularly on immigration and his new Cuba outreach. Las Vegas Sun

Congress Again Buys Abrams Tanks The Army Doesn't Want
The new defense spending bill includes $120 million for tanks that the Army has repeatedly said it doesn't want. For three years, the Army in numerous Congressional hearings has pushed a plan that essentially would have suspended tank building and upgrades in the U.S. for the first time since World War II. The Army suggested that production lines could be kept open through foreign sales. Each time, Congress has pushed back. Last week, Congress won again in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2015. Fox News

Watch Out World: North Korea Deep Into Cyber Warfare
North Korea is one of the world's poorest countries, seen as well behind most everyone when it comes to most technologies and much more. Hacking may not be one of them. Scant resources or not, a defector who once worked as a computer expert for the North Korean government says that it has a vast network of hackers devoted to cyberwarfare against perceived enemies of the Stalinist state. Jang Se-yul, who defected from North Korea seven years ago, told CNN that he thinks there are 1,800 cyberwarriors in the agency stationed around the world. But he says even the agents themselves don't know how many others work for the secretive group, called Bureau 121, whose mission is to "conduct cyberattacks against overseas and enemy states." CNN

Iran To Conduct 'Massive' Military Exercise
Iran will conduct a large-scale military exercise in the south of the country beginning Dec. 25, a senior Iranian military commander announced Thursday. The seven-day war game, codenamed "Mohammad Rasolallah," will involve the Army, Navy, Air Force, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and the Basij (Volunteer) Force, Army Brig. Gen. Abdolrahim Mousavi told reporters. "New weapons and tactics will be tested and evaluated in the war games," he added. Navy Commander Rear Adm. Habibollah Sayyari said tests would include assessing the capability of Iran's "surface-to-surface, surface-to-sea, surface-to-air and air-to-surface missiles." UPI

World Leaders Hail U.S.-Cuba Deal As Overdue
The historic announcement normalizing diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba was praised by governments around the world Thursday.
Joint declarations by President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro on Wednesday proclaimed the start of a mutual effort to abandon what Obama called a "rigid and outdated policy" of Cuban isolation. The normalization is expected to lead to improved trade and visitation between the two countries, hostile to one another for over 50 years, although a U.S. embargo remains in place. UPI

US: We Won't Support Palestinian UNSC Resolution On An Israeli Withdrawal
The US on Thursday said it plans to veto a Palestinian UN Security Council resolution setting a three-year timetable for Israel and its security forces to withdraw from the West Bank. “We have seen the draft. It is not something we would support,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters. “We think others feel the same and are calling for further consultations. The Palestinians understand that. You may have also seen [Palestinian Authority] President [Mahmoud] Abbas speak to this earlier today.... They support continued consultations and they are not pushing for a vote on this now.” Jerusalem Post

Israel Dismisses Palestinian Peace Deal Plan As 'Gimmick'
Isreal says a Palestinian effort to set a three-year deadline for it to end its occupation of Palestinian territories is a "gimmick". A draft resolution, submitted by Jordan to the UN Security Council, also calls for a peace accord within a year. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that without Israel's consent, nothing would change. Jordan has indicated it will not seek a quick vote, opening the way for further discussion. The US - which has vetoed previous resolutions it considers hostile to its ally Israel - said on Thursday it would not support the move. BBC

Mount Sinjar: Islamic State Siege Broken
Kurdish forces in northern Iraq are claiming their biggest victory yet against Islamic State (IS) militants. They say they have broken the IS siege of Mount Sinjar, where thousands of Yazidis and other displaced Iraqis have been trapped since August. IS controls a swathe of Iraq and Syria, where it has declared a caliphate. Meanwhile, the Pentagon's most senior officer says US air strikes have killed several high-ranking IS military leaders in Iraq. The Kurdish offensive against IS forces besieging Mount Sinjar began early on Wednesday with the most intensive round of air strikes yet by US and coalition forces - 45 in all. BBC

US Backed Talks Between Jihadi Clerics And Isis In Effort To Save Hostage’s Life
US counter-terrorism officials backed a high-stakes negotiation involving two of the world’s most prominent jihadi clerics as well as former Guantánamo detainees in an attempt to save the life of an American hostage held by Islamic State, the Guardian can reveal. Emails seen by the Guardian show how tentative talks with the spiritual leadership of Isis to secure the release of Abdul-Rahman (Peter) Kassig began in mid-October and ran for several weeks, with the knowledge of the FBI.
Kassig – who converted to Islam while imprisoned for more than a year – was the most recent western hostage to be killed by Isis. The jihadi group announced his death on 16 November with a typically grisly video. Guardian

President Obama Signs Bill Authorizing Sanctions Against Venezuela
President Barack Obama has signed legislation into law allowing him to sanction Venezuelan government officials who were involved in a crackdown on anti-government protesters. The bill authorizes sanctions that would freeze the assets of and ban visas for anyone accused of carrying out acts of violence or violating the human rights of those opposing the South American nation’s socialist government. Last summer, the State Department imposed a travel ban on Venezuelan officials who were accused of abuses during street protests that left dozens of people dead. Guardian

EU Court Rules That Fatness 'Can Constitute A Disability’
Fatness "can constitute a disability" for the purposes of European Union equality at work legislation, Europe's highest court has ruled. The judgment means British companies will be required to treat obese workers as "disabled", providing them with larger seats, special parking spaces and other facilities. “Obesity can constitute a ‘disability’ within the meaning of the Employment Equality Directive,” the European Court of Justice ruled. “While no general principle of EU law prohibits, in itself, discrimination on grounds of obesity, that condition falls within the concept of ‘disability’ where, under particular conditions, it hinders the full and effective participation of the person concerned in professional life on an equal basis with other workers.” Telegraph

Republicans Threaten To Stop US Embassy Opening In Cuba
The backlash against a deal for the United States to reopen its embassy in Havana and thaw its relations with Cuba is underway in Florida, where Republicans are threatening to use their control of the Senate to sabotage the plans. President Barack Obama announced on Wednesday that he was ending America’s five-decade policy of isolating Cuba and that he hoped to reinstate full diplomatic relations with the communist island “in the coming months”. While the President’s political opponents are unable to stop him from formally restoring US ties with its communist neighbour, they can throw up practical hurdles to slow down or even derail the détente. Telegraph

UN Launches Appeal For Life-Saving Aid To Millions Of Syrians, Support To Host Communities
As Syria’s war rages on into its fifth year, the needs for food, shelter and medicine are astronomical, several United Nations agencies said today as they launched a major appeal, requesting over $8.4 billion to help nearly 18 million people in Syria and throughout the region. Presented to donors at a meeting in Berlin, the 2015 appeal incorporates, for the first time, development aspects in addition to the life-saving humanitarian needs of over 12 million displaced people inside Syria, and the millions of Syrian refugees scattered throughout the region and the countries that host them. UN News

UN Officials Urge Reforms, Fight Against Drug Trade To Ensure Country’s Security
As Afghanistan builds upon recent political developments, including the formation of a unity government, the country’s authorities and the international community must not ignore the immense challenges that lie ahead, from simmering insecurity to an escalating drug crisis, two senior United Nations officials declared today during their briefing to the Security Council. “The upsurge in insurgent violence and concomitant increase in civilian casualties, the deepening budgetary shortfall, and delays in critical government appointments remind us that tackling these challenges will require collective determination and renewed focus,” Special Representative of the Secretary-General and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), Nicholas Haysom told the 15-member Council. “The Afghan people deserve nothing less.” UN News

ABC Online  Canada National Post  Daily Telegraph  The Observer Wired News Xinhua News
 

Show Archives
Commentary
Web Net Info
Web Net Info
info@jpschools.com