Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The general appears to be doing very much better.

While testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee, General David Petraeus, head of the U.S. Central Command, passed out briefly while answering a question from Senator John McCain from Arizona.

While answering the question, Petraeus slumped over in mid-sentence and the hearing was immediately suspended while several people rushed over from the table to help him. Shortly after, Gen. Petraeus regained consciousness and walked from the hearing room under his own power.

The chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Michigan Senator Carl Levin said the general “appears to be doing very much better.” The senator also said that Petraeus was eating and may have been dehydrated, and that the hearing might resume. Petraeus was testifying on the Afghanistan War.

After a short time, Petraeus returned from the room he was in, smiling and sipping from a cup. Though the hearing was resumed briefly, given the circumstances, Levin postponed the hearing until Wednesday. As the hearing closed, McCain called the general one of the “nation’s heroes” and also said “we’re glad you have recovered and look forward to seeing you again tomorrow.” As Levin sounded the gavel that closed the hearing for the day, applause broke out.

Some people have speculated that Petraeus passed out because of McCain’s questions, as the General slumped over while answering McCain. However, later General Petraeus said “It wasn’t Sen. McCain’s questions. I just got dehydrated.”



Tuesday, January 30, 2018

On Sunday, female ice hockey players from North and South Korea joined one another for a training session before the upcoming Winter Olympics. Players from the two Koreas are to compete together as a united team for the events hosted in Pyeongchang, South Korea, which are scheduled to start on February 9; Seoul’s Unification Ministry said. The cross-border gesture is part of diplomatic efforts to ease tensions on the divided Korean Peninsula and the team was approved by the International Olympic Committee.

The International Olympic Committee selected Pyeongchang in 2011 to host the event, marking South Korea’s first opportunity since the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. The earlier event was marred by violence as North Korea had bombed a South Korean flight several months prior, killing over 100 and boycotted the event. Inter-Korean relations have changed considerably in the ensuing thirty years, including the two sending unified teams for table tennis and youth football in other non-Olympic competitions.

The announcement that the two countries would compete together was a stated goal of South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Last year, he announced the proposal and the two nations went into discussion this month. After two weeks, they made the announcement to field a consolidated 35-strong team of ice hockey players and have joint skiing exercises with both team coaches involved.

According to Yonhap News Agency estimates, about 80% of South Koreans support dialogue, but the move to have a joint team has been controversial. Over 10,000 South Korean citizens sent a petition to South Korean President Moon opposing the union and a group of North Korean defectors held a protest at the South Korean National Assembly on January 24, tearing apart photos of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un. Public support for eventual reunification of the Korean peninsula has waned in recent years, with the younger generation more skeptical of the possibility.



Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Dan McCreary is running for the Progressive Conservative in the Ontario provincial election, in the Brant riding. Wikinews’ Nick Moreau interviewed him regarding his values, his experience, and his campaign.

Stay tuned for further interviews; every candidate from every party is eligible, and will be contacted. Expect interviews from Liberals, Progressive Conservatives, New Democratic Party members, Ontario Greens, as well as members from the Family Coalition, Freedom, Communist, Libertarian, and Confederation of Regions parties, as well as independents.



Saturday, August 23, 2008

London, Ontario is the latest in a string of Canadian cities to have acted on increasing public demand to ban bottled water. On Monday, the decision to eliminate bottled water sales in city-run facilities was passed by London’s city council with a vote of 15-3 in favour. The move was driven by a desire to reduce waste and shipping, have a lower impact on the environment and promote tap water as a cheap and safe alternative.

London’s new restrictions will be implemented over the next several months in buildings that are already equipped with water fountains. Bottled water will still be permitted at many city-run events, such as upcoming summer festivals. Privately-owned retailers will not be affected by the ban.

Other cities, such as Vancouver, Ottawa and Kitchener, that are already engaged in debate on the issue, may now be watching London carefully for how the ban plays out. Other areas have already begun to phone London with questions on the details of its new regulations. Toronto has begun taking a look at bottled water packaging as part of its waste diversion strategy, and its public school board is looking into the possibility of a total restriction on bottled water sales.

In recent years, an awareness of the energy that is required to manufacture, transport and recycle the product has spread nation-wide. Proponents of the ban point to the fact that it can produce as much as 150 times the volume of greenhouse gas when producing bottled water as compared to supplying the same volume of tap water. They also point out that the water that goes into bottled water products is not inspected as frequently as tap water in Canadian cities.

Some have taken this cause to heart more than others, such as British Environment Minister Phil Woolas, who called the use of bottled water “morally unacceptable.” Restaurant critic Giles Coren of The Times of London criticizes those who use the product as “the new smokers.”

Canada’s beverage industry has come down with criticism on the increasing opposition to bottled water. Spokesman Scott Tabachnick for Coca-Cola Co., which produces Dasani brand bottled water, commented on the convenience of the product: “It’s hard to bring your kitchen sink with you.”

It’s hard to bring your kitchen sink with you.

Vancouver City Councillor Tim Stevenson thinks that bottled water’s time has come and gone: “Bottled water companies have had a fabulous ride on an unnecessary fad.” Vancouver officials are still determining how bottled water restrictions, which have been voted for by the City Council, can be phased in.

Next month, the city is planning to initiate a marketing campaign encouraging Vancouver residents to choose tap water and to remember to carry reusable drinking containers whenever possible.

Renowned environmental activist Dr. David Suzuki has praised London’s decision, saying that it represents a turning point for people’s perceptions on the issue: “I’m really delighted that London has done this because it really makes us focus on some fundamental issues.” He hopes that someday people will “look at anyone who hauls out a bottle of water and say, ‘What the hell’s wrong with you?'”



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Friday, June 13, 2008

A long-awaited apology from the Canadian government to the country’s native population was overshadowed on Wednesday by remarks made by Canadian Member of Parliament (MP) Pierre Poilievre. The government had announced that the historic statement was to take place on Wednesday, June 11, but prior to the actual apology, Poilievre spoke on a noon-hour radio program and made remarks that were ‘hurtful’ to natives, as the MP later admitted.

The apology, which took place as planned, involved Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper offering his regrets, on behalf of the government, for decades of racial discrimination towards natives in residential schools. These schools were operated during the 19th and 20th centuries by churches and funded by a branch of the federal government. The First Nations native children in the residential school system were forced to assimilate into non-native culture, were at times victims of physical and/or sexual abuse, and were exposed to poor sanitation and a lack of medical care.

Unfortunately, Poilievre’s remarks caused more media attention than did the apology itself. In the radio show, the MP expressed his doubts about the value of compensating natives for what happened in residential schools. Natives are being given a cash settlement as part of the government’s recognition of the schools’ wrongdoings.

“Now, along with this apology, comes another $4 billion in compensation for those who partook in the residential schools over those years,” Poilievre remarked. Many have pointed to his casual use of the word partook in his statement, which was not the case for many students, who were forced into the system.

The Conservative MP has now apologised for his comments. Yesterday, in the Canadian House of Commons, he spoke: “Yesterday on a day when the House and all Canadians were celebrating a new beginning, I made remarks that were hurtful and wrong.” He added, “I accept responsibility for them and I apologize.”

While Harper has tried to mitigate the situation by explaining that Poilievre has apologised to national aboriginal groups, the Liberal opposition party is calling the MP a “national embarrassment”.

There have been repeated calls for the MP to step down from his position. Liberal leader Stéphane Dion suspects that other Conservatives think similarly, asking, “who of the others think like him?”



Sunday, January 27, 2008

Viktor Schreckengost, the father of industrial design and creator of the Jazz Bowl, an iconic piece of Jazz Age art designed for Eleanor Roosevelt during his association with Cowan Pottery died yesterday. He was 101.

Schreckengost was born on June 26, 1906 in Sebring, Ohio, United States.

Schreckengost’s peers included the far more famous designers Raymond Loewy and Norman Bel Geddes.

In 2000, the Cleveland Museum of Art curated the first ever retrospective of Schreckengost’s work. Stunning in scope, the exhibition included sculpture, pottery, dinnerware, drawings, and paintings.



Wednesday, March 23, 2005

A bill passed by India’s Parliament put an end to the manufacture of many cheap generic drugs copied from products protected by foreign company patents. A Patents Amendment Bill (2005) has been condemned by foreign aid groups who expect a significant rise in drug costs as a result of the bill.

Drug compounds in India were previously not protected by patents, meaning that research and developement costs borne by the originating manufacturers were avoided by generic drug producers. The new bill “will move India toward the patent mainstream and support and encourage innovation and investment in research and development in India,” said Ranjit Sahani, managing director of Novartis India.

As the world’s fourth-largest manufacturer of drugs by volume, the pharmaceutical industry in India is valued at US$5 billion – but ranks as only 13th by value, reflecting the low costs to consumers of the products. “Because India is one of the world’s biggest producers of generic drugs, this law will have a severe knock-on effect on many developing countries which depend on imported generic drugs from India,” said Samar Verma, regional policy adviser at Oxfam International.

Around half of African, Asian and Latin American HIV patients needing anti-retroviral drugs rely on low-cost drugs from India, which are sold at one twentieth the price of similar drugs produced in the West.

More than 90 per cent of drugs listed as essentials in India are either unpatented or expired. Drugs patented before 1995 — when the World Trade Organization [WTO] set a 10 year deadline to enact protection — will not be eligible under the bill.

Some degree of protection was mandated by WTO in order for India to have greater access to international markets. Opposers of the bill say it goes too far.

The Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights [TRIPS], under WTO, allows developing countries to not provide patent protection for uses of known drugs, new dosages and formulations, or combinations of known drugs.



Sunday, November 6, 2016

The following is the sixth and final edition of a monthly series chronicling the U.S. 2016 presidential election. It features original material compiled throughout the previous month after an overview of the month’s biggest stories.

In this month’s edition on the campaign trail: the Free & Equal Foundation holds a presidential debate with three little-known candidates; three additional candidates give their final pleas to voters; and past Wikinews interviewees provide their electoral predictions ahead of the November 8 election.

Contents

  • 1 Summary
  • 2 Free & Equal Debate
  • 3 Final pleas
  • 4 Predictions
  • 5 Related articles
  • 6 Sources


Sunday, January 27, 2008

Viktor Schreckengost, the father of industrial design and creator of the Jazz Bowl, an iconic piece of Jazz Age art designed for Eleanor Roosevelt during his association with Cowan Pottery died yesterday. He was 101.

Schreckengost was born on June 26, 1906 in Sebring, Ohio, United States.

Schreckengost’s peers included the far more famous designers Raymond Loewy and Norman Bel Geddes.

In 2000, the Cleveland Museum of Art curated the first ever retrospective of Schreckengost’s work. Stunning in scope, the exhibition included sculpture, pottery, dinnerware, drawings, and paintings.



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