31 May

Australian artist Pro Hart dies

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Pro Hart, the self-taught, internationally-acclaimed Australian artist, died at home in Broken Hill on March 28 after family members decided to cease his medication. The 77-year-old had been ill with motor neurone disease. Family members described his passing as peaceful. Hart is a household name in Australia.

Hart’s son, John Hart, says a State funeral is being organised for his father. He says his father lost the ability to paint about six months ago. Pro Hart’s son David today said the funeral for the “brushman of the bush” will be held in the far-western New South Wales mining city of Broken Hill next Tuesday. “It will be held next Tuesday”, he said, “probably in the town’s civic centre.”

Born Kevin Charles Hart in Broken Hill on May 30, 1928, his mining mates nicknamed him ‘Professor’ due to his passion for invention. He started painting “cheeky” pictures on the wooden beams of the mines he worked in. Hart went to few art classes and started painting full-time in 1958.

Since then, he has exhibited all over the world, including London, New York, Paris and Tokyo. He also illustrated several books. Hart’s preoccupation with art began as a teenager on his family’s sheep station near Menindee.

His work hangs in collections all over the world. Agent Amanda Phillips says Hart was one of Australia’s most renowned artists yet his paintings are not in the National Gallery of Australia. “He’s a great Australian, I mean he’s been given an MBE for his services to art, he’s been honoured all around the world, his work hangs in major collections around the world, why isn’t he displayed here in Australia? A spokeswoman for the National Gallery confirmed they had a “very limited collection” of Pro Hart’s works although no paintings.

26 May

Hope fades for families of trapped Mexican miners

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Almost 600 desperate family members and others remained camped outside the Pasta de Conchos coal mine near San Juan de Sabinas, in the northern Mexico state of Coahuila where 65 Mexican miners were trapped by a gas explosion around 2:30 a.m. (0830 GMT) Sunday. Some are threatening to storm the mine while soldiers are trying to keep them calm and rescuers continue to pick through the rock and debris with hand tools, fearing that any power equipment might set off another explosion.

The local newspaper’s headline caused panic by quoting one of over a dozen surviving miners who were close enough to the exits to escape: “They are surely dead,” (La Prensa de Monclova). However, Arturo Vilchis, Civil Protection Director, refused to speculate on the condition of the miners, while Javier de la Fuente, an engineering contractor with mine owner Grupo México S.A. de C.V. also tried to hold out some hope.

The men were each supposed to be carrying oxygen tanks, each with a six hour supply, and there’s some hope that they could reach other oxygen supply tanks, or that some air might be reaching them through the ventilation shafts into which rescuers have been pumping more oxygen since shortly after the explosion.

Juan Rebolledo, vice president of international affairs for Grupo México, assured onlookers that U.S. mining experts were on the way, and officials at the U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration have confirmed that they’ve sent a specialized equipment truck and several mining experts which should arrive at the mine site on Wednesday afternoon.

Meanwhile Consuelo Aguilar, a spokeswoman for the National Miners’ Union, called for an investigation into Grupo México’s responsibility for the disaster. Pedro Camarillo, a federal labor official, said nothing unusual was found during a routine evaluation in early February.

23 May

British 4G mobile spectrum auction underway

Friday, January 25, 2013

The auction for the mobile spectrum capable of carrying 4G mobile broadband services in the United Kingdom got underway on Thursday. The auction process is expected to take several weeks and will take place online. Mobile network operators are expected to roll out services by July.

4G mobile network technology will bring faster downstream speeds than the current 3G connections allowing for data-intensive surfing on the move such as video streaming. Some mobile users have criticised the industry regulator Ofcom for having taken a long time to start rolling out the 4G technology, with the United Kingdom falling behind many other European countries.

EE (Everything Everywhere) launched the UK’s first 4G network in a number of cities last year, however many people complained due to them being the only service provider. The bidders include the current main UK mobile network operators — Vodafone UK, Telefónica UK (O2), Everything Everywhere and Hutchinson 3G (3) — as well as British Telecommunications.

Ed Richards, the Chief Executive of Ofcom, said of the auction: “It will release the essential raw material for the next wave of mobile digital services. This will change the way we consume digital media in both our personal and working lives and deliver significant benefits to millions of consumers and businesses across the country.”

Each bidder is competing with one another to win combinations of the 28 spectrum ‘lots’ available from the 800MHz and 2.6GHz spectrum bands.

23 May

Cleveland, Ohio clinic performs US’s first face transplant

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A team of eight transplant surgeons in Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, USA, led by reconstructive surgeon Dr. Maria Siemionow, age 58, have successfully performed the first almost total face transplant in the US, and the fourth globally, on a woman so horribly disfigured due to trauma, that cost her an eye. Two weeks ago Dr. Siemionow, in a 23-hour marathon surgery, replaced 80 percent of her face, by transplanting or grafting bone, nerve, blood vessels, muscles and skin harvested from a female donor’s cadaver.

The Clinic surgeons, in Wednesday’s news conference, described the details of the transplant but upon request, the team did not publish her name, age and cause of injury nor the donor’s identity. The patient’s family desired the reason for her transplant to remain confidential. The Los Angeles Times reported that the patient “had no upper jaw, nose, cheeks or lower eyelids and was unable to eat, talk, smile, smell or breathe on her own.” The clinic’s dermatology and plastic surgery chair, Francis Papay, described the nine hours phase of the procedure: “We transferred the skin, all the facial muscles in the upper face and mid-face, the upper lip, all of the nose, most of the sinuses around the nose, the upper jaw including the teeth, the facial nerve.” Thereafter, another team spent three hours sewing the woman’s blood vessels to that of the donor’s face to restore blood circulation, making the graft a success.

The New York Times reported that “three partial face transplants have been performed since 2005, two in France and one in China, all using facial tissue from a dead donor with permission from their families.” “Only the forehead, upper eyelids, lower lip, lower teeth and jaw are hers, the rest of her face comes from a cadaver; she could not eat on her own or breathe without a hole in her windpipe. About 77 square inches of tissue were transplanted from the donor,” it further described the details of the medical marvel. The patient, however, must take lifetime immunosuppressive drugs, also called antirejection drugs, which do not guarantee success. The transplant team said that in case of failure, it would replace the part with a skin graft taken from her own body.

Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, a Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgeon praised the recent medical development. “There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Leading bioethicist Arthur Caplan of the University of Pennsylvania withheld judgment on the Cleveland transplant amid grave concerns on the post-operation results. “The biggest ethical problem is dealing with failure — if your face rejects. It would be a living hell. If your face is falling off and you can’t eat and you can’t breathe and you’re suffering in a terrible manner that can’t be reversed, you need to put on the table assistance in dying. There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Dr Alex Clarke, of the Royal Free Hospital had praised the Clinic for its contribution to medicine. “It is a real step forward for people who have severe disfigurement and this operation has been done by a team who have really prepared and worked towards this for a number of years. These transplants have proven that the technical difficulties can be overcome and psychologically the patients are doing well. They have all have reacted positively and have begun to do things they were not able to before. All the things people thought were barriers to this kind of operations have been overcome,” she said.

The first partial face transplant surgery on a living human was performed on Isabelle Dinoire on November 27 2005, when she was 38, by Professor Bernard Devauchelle, assisted by Professor Jean-Michel Dubernard in Amiens, France. Her Labrador dog mauled her in May 2005. A triangle of face tissue including the nose and mouth was taken from a brain-dead female donor and grafted onto the patient. Scientists elsewhere have performed scalp and ear transplants. However, the claim is the first for a mouth and nose transplant. Experts say the mouth and nose are the most difficult parts of the face to transplant.

In 2004, the same Cleveland Clinic, became the first institution to approve this surgery and test it on cadavers. In October 2006, surgeon Peter Butler at London‘s Royal Free Hospital in the UK was given permission by the NHS ethics board to carry out a full face transplant. His team will select four adult patients (children cannot be selected due to concerns over consent), with operations being carried out at six month intervals. In March 2008, the treatment of 30-year-old neurofibromatosis victim Pascal Coler of France ended after having received what his doctors call the worlds first successful full face transplant.

Ethical concerns, psychological impact, problems relating to immunosuppression and consequences of technical failure have prevented teams from performing face transplant operations in the past, even though it has been technically possible to carry out such procedures for years.

Mr Iain Hutchison, of Barts and the London Hospital, warned of several problems with face transplants, such as blood vessels in the donated tissue clotting and immunosuppressants failing or increasing the patient’s risk of cancer. He also pointed out ethical issues with the fact that the procedure requires a “beating heart donor”. The transplant is carried out while the donor is brain dead, but still alive by use of a ventilator.

According to Stephen Wigmore, chair of British Transplantation Society’s ethics committee, it is unknown to what extent facial expressions will function in the long term. He said that it is not certain whether a patient could be left worse off in the case of a face transplant failing.

Mr Michael Earley, a member of the Royal College of Surgeon‘s facial transplantation working party, commented that if successful, the transplant would be “a major breakthrough in facial reconstruction” and “a major step forward for the facially disfigured.”

In Wednesday’s conference, Siemionow said “we know that there are so many patients there in their homes where they are hiding from society because they are afraid to walk to the grocery stores, they are afraid to go the the street.” “Our patient was called names and was humiliated. We very much hope that for this very special group of patients there is a hope that someday they will be able to go comfortably from their houses and enjoy the things we take for granted,” she added.

In response to the medical breakthrough, a British medical group led by Royal Free Hospital’s lead surgeon Dr Peter Butler, said they will finish the world’s first full face transplant within a year. “We hope to make an announcement about a full-face operation in the next 12 months. This latest operation shows how facial transplantation can help a particular group of the most severely facially injured people. These are people who would otherwise live a terrible twilight life, shut away from public gaze,” he said.

21 May

Woman in Buffalo, New York accidentally sets herself on fire

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Buffalo, New York —A woman in Buffalo, New York in the United States is in critical condition tonight at Sisters Of Charity Hospital after she accidentally set herself on fire.

The unnamed elderly woman was receiving oxygen for medical problems in her home and lit a cigarette, and the oxygen coming from her mask facilitated the ignition of her clothing, setting her on fire.

Despite her “severe” burns as described by firefighters on radio communications, she was still able to dial the emergency line in the U.S., 911.

In the U.S. only 4% of all residential fires were reportedly caused by smoking materials in 2002. These fires, however, were responsible for 19% of residential fire fatalities and 9% of injuries. The fatality rate due to smoking is nearly four times higher than the overall residential fire rate; injuries are more than twice as likely. Forty percent of all smoking fires start in the bedroom or living room/family room; in 35% of these fires, bedding or upholstered furniture are the items first ignited.

21 May

Brazilian President Lula met Chavez, military and economic cooperation

Thursday, February 17, 2005

CARACAS, Venezuela –The Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva met the Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on February 14, 2005 in Caracas, Venezuela. Brazil and Venezuela signed agreements of cooperation on many areas. According to the Brazilian government this was a strategical encounteur. This meeting is the first of three meetings that President Lula will have with South American Presidents in three days. The scheduled meetings are with the presidents of: Venezuela (February, 14), Guiana (February, 15) and Suriname (February, 16).

President Lula was accompanied by the following comitiva: the Minister of Development, Industry, and External Trade Luiz Fernando Furlan, the Minister of Finance Antônio Palocci, the Minister of Foreign Relations Celso Amorim, the Minister of Health Humberto Costa, the Minister of Mines and Energy Dilma Roussef, the Minister of Tourism Walfrido Mares Guia, the President of Petrobras José Eduardo Dutra, the President of National Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES) Guido Mantega, the President of Eletrobrás Silas Rondeau Cavalcante Silva and the Special Secretary for Aquaculture and Fisheries José Fritsch. In addition a delegation of executives representing enterprises from Brazil accompanied the President.

The Brazilian Ministry of External Relations told the trip aims the construction of a strategical alliance and commercial integration between both countries. The Brazilian Presidential Advisor Marco Aurélio Garcia said:”With this gesture, Brazil will consolidate one of its major political goals, which is the constitution of a South American community of nations”. He added: “These agreements with Venezuela are strategical. We want this agreement as a model for other agreements in the region.”

According to President Lula the integration of the Latin America is the priority number one of his government. Days before the arrival in Venezuela and commenting about the trip Lula said: “We’re going to do the same thing in Colombia and in other countries in which integration is no longer a campaign speech but part of the way we deal with real things, day to day”.

The integration of the Latin America is the politics repeatedly proposed by Lula during the meetings of the Foro de São Paulo. According to him and the others members of the Foro there must be a integration among all the left parties and governments of Latin America. The union aims to be an alternative and opposing force to the politics and influence of the richest countries, mainly the United States. Among the organizations which are usually participants of the Foro de São Paulo are: Communist Party of Cuba, Colombian Communist Party, Communist Party of Bolivia, Communist Party of Brazil, Workers’ Party, Paraguayan Communist Party, Peruvian Communist Party, Socialist Party of Peru, National Liberation Army, Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front, Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity, Tupamaros.

On December 4, 2001 during the 10th edition of the Foro de São Paulo in Havana Lula said:”A shoal of small fish may mean the finishing of the hungry in our countries, in out continent. We should not think as the History ended on our journey by the Earth. Even it happens just once, or with one gesture, let’s effectively contribute to the improve the life of millions of human beings who live socially excluded by this neoliberal model.”[1]

In Venezuela, once again, he brought out the integration wish: “This is the biggest dream I am carrying, that we can negotiate collectively, not like one country, but like a set of countries so we can do that our people may have the chance to conquer the full citizenship.”

Contents

  • 1 Economic cooperation
  • 2 Military cooperation
  • 3 See also
  • 4 References
19 May

I’ll Have Another wins 2012 Preakness Stakes

Monday, May 21, 2012

The placement for first and second place at the 2012 Preakness Stakes could have been a replay of the Kentucky Derby earlier this month as I’ll Have Another came in first with Bodemeister behind in second. In this race, Creative Cause finished third.

By winning the Kentucky Derby and the 137th Preakness Stakes, I’ll Have Another has a chance at winning the US Triple Crown of thoroughbred horse racing. The final race I’ll Have Another would have to win is the Belmont Stakes, which will be held on June 9.

I’ll Have Another was not favored to win the Preakness Stakes and his odds were set at 3-1. Bodemeister, who was the favorite at 2-1 odds, was the speed horse again as he led the field for most of the race just as he did at the Kentucky Derby. This time, Creative Cause was following close behind in second by the time the field of horses reached the far turn. Just as in the Kentucky Derby, I’ll Have Another pushed faster in the final leg of the race. However, the Preakness Stakes finish was closer with I’ll Have Another squeezing by the pacesetter at the very end to win the race in 1:56.9.

Mexican jockey Mario Gutierrez has won his last four races with I’ll Have Another. He gave I’ll Have Another the credit for the finish, “No one put him in this race. He put himself into the race,” he said. Gutierrez said all he had to do was signal to the horse that it was time to challenge Bodemeister and the horse did the rest.

The winning horse is owned by financier J. Paul Reddam and trained by Doug O’Neill.

The Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland was filled with a crowd of 121,309 to watch the Triple Crown hopeful. The last horse to win the Triple Crown was Affirmed in 1978.

THE HORSES

According to the official Pimlico website, the horses that competed this year in the Preakness Stakes by starting position include:

1. Tiger Walk is owned by Sagamore Farm, trained by Ignacio Correas IV, and was ridden by Ramon A. Dominguez.

2. Teeth of the Dog is owned by J.W. Singer. The thoroughbred is trained by Michael Matz and the jockey was Joe Bravo.

3. Pretension was the winner of the 2012 Canonero II Stakes. The horse is owned by Kidwells Petite Stable, trained by Christopher W. Grove, and was raced by Javier Santiago.

4. Zetterholm is owned by Winter Park Partners, trained by Richard E. Dutrow, Jr., and ridden by Junior Alvarado.

5. Went The Day Well is owned by Team Valor International and is trained by H. Graham Motion. His jockey was John Velazquez. This team won last year’s Kentucky Derby race with Animal Kingdom, and they took Went The Day Well to the 2012 Kentucky Derby.

6. Creative Cause is owned by Heinz Steinmann and trained by Mike Harrington. His jockey was be Joel Rosario. Creative Cause was part of the field at the Kentucky Derby, too.

7. Bodemeister, winner of the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park, is trained by Bob Baffert. He is owned by Zayat Stables and his jockey was Mike Smith.

8. Daddy Nose Best was the winner of the Sunland Derby at Sunland Park and the El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate and raced in the 2012 Kentucky Derby. He is owned by Cathy and Bob Zollars, trained by Steve Asmussen. His jockey was Julien Leparoux.

9. I’ll Have Another was the winner of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. He is owned by financier J. Paul Reddam, trained by Doug O’Neill and ridden by jockey Mario Gutierrez.

10. Optimizer is trained by D. Wayne Lukas, owned by tobacconist Brad Kelley of Bluegrass Hall LLC and ridden by Corey Nakatani. This horse raced also raced in the Kentucky Derby.

11. Cozzetti is trained by Dale Romans and was raced by Jose Lezcano The horse is owned by Albaugh Family Stables.

16 May

Cisco sues Apple for iPhone trademark

Friday, January 12, 2007

The iPhone only made its appearance as a prototype and there have been controversies aroused.

The dispute has come up between the manufacturer of the iPhone (which was resented on Wednesday for the first time) – Apple Inc. – and a leader in network and communication systems, based in San JoseCisco. The company claims to possess the trademark for iPhone, and moreover, that it sells devices under the same brand through one of its divisions.

This became the reason for Cisco to file a lawsuit against Apple Inc. so that the latter would stop selling the device.

Cisco states that it has received the trademark in 2000, when the company overtook Infogear Technology Corp., which took place in 1996.

The Vice President and general counsel of the company, Mark Chandler, explained that there was no doubt about the excitement of the new device from Apple, but they should not use a trademark, which belongs to Cisco.

The iPhone developed by Cisco is a device which allows users to make phone calls over the voice over Internet protocol (VoIP).

16 May

Long-running TV clown marks 50 years since debut

Friday, February 15, 2008

Star of one of the longest-running shows in television history, 79-year-old Chris Wedes is celebrating half a century since he became “Julius Pierpont Patches”.

From 1958 to 1981, CBS affiliate KIRO-TV produced The J.P. Patches Show. The show featured J.P., the Mayor of the City Dump, who lived in a shack with multiple characters visiting. Virtually the entire supporting cast, male and female, human or non-human, was played by the versatile Bob Newman.

The character itself is more than 50 years old.

J. P. Patches was created at NBC-affiliate WTCN by Daryl Laub. When he left for KSTP-TV, also in Minnesota, the character was taken over by Wedes. (Wedes was then an actor, DJ, and kids TV cook.) In 1958, Wedes moved to Seattle, to become the first floor director at KIRO-TV, bringing The J.P. Patches Show with him. (Laub, meanwhile, created T. N. Tatters at another station.) The show aired twice a day for 13 years, and once on Saturdays, for 8 more years just in the morning, and for the final two years only on Saturday morning. In total, an estimated 12,000 shows made the air, all of them live, with next to no budget.

Wedes told the Everett Herald that: “I’m still amazed at the longevity of the character. When I go on appearances, I get hugs, I get tears, I get laughter. The people are so in love with J.P. Patches. I can’t believe it that it has hung on that long.”

Businesses paid Wedes and the station to appear in character at grand openings, appeared at a Boeing Christmas party with an audience of 55,000, and appeared on Darigold milk containers, Sunbeam bread bags, and Dankens ice cream lids. Even still, the image has been licensed for bobble heads and an action figure. The book “J.P. Patches: Northwest Icon” was published in 2002.

While the cartoons were airing, Wedes’ Patches would greet guest children; the waiting list was for a while six months long. Children who stopped by include now-billionaire Bill Gates, and former Washington Governor Gary Locke.

Celebrities appearing on the show included politicians, Olympic medalists, comedian Steve Allen, Burt “Robin” Ward of Batman, folk singer Tiny Tim, actress Debbie Reynolds, oceanographer Jacques Cousteau, and Colonel Harland Sanders, the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken.

Some parents objected to KIRO-TV dropping the national series Captain Kangaroo, three years into its run, to put in Patches.

A minor controversy erupted when a local newspaper photographed Wedes, being taken in an ambulance when involved in a car crash, not of his own fault. The official site reads that “The picture distressed many local children and would remain an embarrassment to the local media if they actually had any shame.”

There are still enough “Patches Pals”, fans of the show, that a statue is planned for Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood. To be completed this summer, the fundraiser is just $55,000 away from the $165,000 needed for the sculpture of Patches with Gertrude, the character’s girlfriend.

They’ve so far donated $110,000 of $165,000 to cast a bronze statue of J.P. Patches and his sidekick Gertrude to be placed in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. More money is still needed for the statue, being made by a Sultan sculptor and completed this summer. Any money raised that isn’t needed for the statue, coordinated by the local chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, goes to the Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center in Seattle; the statue itself will have a slot to collect money for the hospital. Billboards around the region track the fundraising progress.

Wedes was diagnosed in October with a controllable but incurable blood cancer, “acute myeloma“. He had to avoid public appearance until recently, due to the told of dialysis. He made seven county fair appearances in 2007, and 30 other gigs. Newman often joins him to perform, despite have multiple sclerosis for the past 20 years.

The two will appear in “An Evening With JP Patches & Gertrude: The Men Behind The Makeup”, April 5 at The 7th Street Theatre in Hoquiam.

[edit]

15 May

Latham quits as Australian Labor leader

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

AUSTRALIA –Following hospitalisation for pancreatitis and ongoing speculation about his leadership, Mark Latham has resigned from his roles as leader of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) and also the Federal Member for Werriwa. He cited as reasons the media harassment, and a desire to put his family and health first.

Mr Latham became leader of the ALP just over a year ago, on 2 December, 2003, leading the party during the October 2004 federal election. He was hospitalised in the run-up to that election, also for treatment of pancreatitis. Following the defeat of his party, his leadership increasingly came under question.

He fell ill a second time almost simultaneously with last year’s Indian Ocean tsunami disaster. His failure to issue a statement on the tsunami drew criticism from the media and calls for his resignation from within his own party, even after it was revealed that he had been incapacitated at the time.

Mr Latham’s resignation sidesteps the possibility of a leadership challenge by other members of the party and leaves no clear successor.


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