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November 11, 2006

Toronto and Rockettes kick into the records book

Toronto and Rockettes kick into the records book

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

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Starting at 5:00 a.m., nearly two-thousand Torontonians started gathering to kick up their heels.

A promotion for The Rockettes Radio City Christmas Spectacular, which will be playing in Toronto throughout the holiday season, a chorus line of either 1,681 or 1,715 Toronto residents was formed. To break the record, the group successfully danced for five minutes non-stop.

The media has had conflicting reports about the number of kickers. The events organizers, Citytv program Breakfast Television, reported 1,249, while the Canadian Press suggested 1,681, and the Toronto Star counted 1,715. No matter the number, it beat the previous record of 1,151.

Carey Low of Guinness certified the record, and says it is very likely the record attempt will be included in the next publication of the Guinness World Records book.

Among those participating were Toronto mayoral candidate Steven LeDrew, 71-year-old Jack McKay and 72-year-old Dorothy McKay, both tap dancers, and Mississauga-resident Suresh Joachim, who personally holds 21 other Guinness records. Participant Jeanette Heller, 95-years-old, is the oldest living Rockette.

The record’s official title is “Longest Single Line of Dancers”.

Rockettes do 800 high kicks during every show, sometimes performing four shows a day.

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McCain shows interest in 2008 run to become American President

McCain shows interest in 2008 run to become American President

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

John McCain

John McCain, a prominent U.S. Senator from Arizona will launch a 2008 exploratory committee next week, said Republican Party officials. According to an official, McCain has already opened a bank account for the committee.

Aides to McCain say the senator will discuss whether to seek the presidency with his family over the Christmas holiday, and make a final decision thereafter. This decision was later disputed by a McCain advisor, but later evidence showed that McCain in fact has opened a bank account for an exploratory committee.

McCain’s team is exploring office space in Virginia, hiring staff and building infrastructure in key early-primary states such as Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

In addition, Joe Biden, a US Senator confirmed he will seek the Democratic 2008 Presidential Nomination and will probably hire a Exploratory committee early next year. Russ Feingold, a US Senator from Wisconsin who had previously been suspected to run has denied interest in the nomination saying he wants to continue his work in the US senate.

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Mayawati denies calling Muslims fanatics

Filed under: Archived,Asia,India — admin @ 5:00 am

Mayawati denies calling Muslims fanatics

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

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Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) leader Mayawati called for a press conference and denied that she had called all Muslims “fanatics”, following protests by Indian Muslims against her remark. She had been quoted as saying

Muslim voters general tilt towards fanatics. That is why I told BSP voters to even vote for BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) since we were not contesting (the recently concluded) civic elections in the state.

Maywati went on to claim that Muslims in the town of Meerut supported “fanatics”.

Her comments led to protestors in Meerut taking to the street and burning effigies of the leader. Some hours later, a “visibly jittery” Mayawati told journalists that her comments had been taken out of context, stating that:

Some TV channels have been projecting that I have referred to Muslims in general as fanatics but that is not true. All I said was that I asked my party supporters to vote for the strongest candidate against the wife of minister Haji Yaqoob Quraishi because he was trying to vitiate the atmosphere by fuelling fanaticism. In the Lucknow Mayor’s poll we transferred our BSP vote to the Muslim nominee of the Congress because the independent whom we had extended support got sold to Mulayam (Singh Yadav) and we were determined to ensure the defeat of the Samajwadi Party. I have always considered Muslims as a part of Bahujan Samaj.

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IEA warns: bleak future for the World without more energy investment

IEA warns: bleak future for the World without more energy investment

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

Climate change

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The International Energy Agency (IEA) issued a warning that the World faces an insecure, dirty and expensive future unless the rate of investment in energy supplies is increased substantially.

In real terms, investment in oil and gas production has not increased significantly in the last five years, but demand has continued to rise. This has been despite oil and gas prices of between four and five times the 2002 levels. If no action is taken, demand will increase by over 50% between 2006 and 2030.

Coal is now cheaper than gas and nuclear is cheaper than both, in some cases even ignoring carbon tax effects. The continued rise in energy prices should make investment on the supply side more attractive.

These are among the findings of the “World Energy Outlook – 2006” report by IEA published this week in London.

Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday November 7, 2006, IEA Executive Director Claude Mandil said “WEO 2006 identifies under-investment in new energy supply as a real risk.” He said “We don’t see how we can avoid [nuclear power] if we want a sustainable long-term future.”

To secure the supply/demand position, IEA calls for investment in energy-supply infrastructure of over $20 trillion in real terms over 2005-2030 to ensure that the World moves into a “Cleaner, Cleverer and More Competitive Energy Future.”

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First person infected with Bird Flu in China has clean bill of health

Filed under: Archived,Avian Flu,China,Disease,Health,Influenza,World — admin @ 5:00 am

First person infected with Bird Flu in China has clean bill of health

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

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The first person to become infected with the Avian Flu or Bird Flu virus in China has been declared healthy after being infected one year ago.

Doctors say that He Junyao, 10-years-old, who was infected on October 18, 2005 is healthy and all his body functions are “normal.”

“[His] body functions are all normal” and the illness “has not affected the boy’s growth,” said Doctor Jiang Yaohui of the Hunan Provincial Children’s Hospital. Yaohui also stated that the quick and “proper treatment” the boy had received was the reason that he survived.

The boy has been granted free medical check-ups until his eighteenth birthday.

At least 19 people have become ill from the illness in China and at least 14 of those have died.

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Belinda Emmett, wife of Rove McManus, dies

Filed under: Archived,Australia — admin @ 5:00 am

Belinda Emmett, wife of Rove McManus, dies

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

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32-year-old Belinda Emmett, Rove McManus’s wife, died this morning in St Vincent hospital, Sydney, Australia due to cancer. Ms Emmett’s family said in a statement: “It is with great sadness we advise that Belinda Emmett’s battle with cancer has ended.”

Because of her death, with Rove McManus, or more correctly John McManus, and other family at her side, Rove has cancelled next Tuesdays Rove Live show. A statement on Network Ten, which airs Rove Live, said: “Ten will give Rove the time he needs away from the show and any support we can during this very sad time.”

“Belinda passed away just after dawn this morning at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney with her family and husband by her side. However the hospital will not divulge how long she was being treated for at the hospital. A spokesman for the hospital said: “As you can imagine, they are very distressed.”

When Ms Emmett was 24-years-old in 1998, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Successful surgery removed a malignant tumour, radiotherapy followed for a total of six weeks. Then, in 2001, Ms Emmett was diagnosed with secondary bone cancer.

“Network Ten notes with great sadness Belinda Emmett’s passing this morning. Our heartfelt sympathies are with Rove McManus and the Emmett and McManus families. We add our support to the call for media and members of the public to respect Rove’s privacy.”

TV station, Seven, where Ms Emmett worked as an actor also showed their support saying: “Our deepest sympathy is extended to Belinda’s family who have supported her through this illness. During Belinda’s time on Home and Away and All Saints, she made many long-lasting friendships. Her acting ability and her warmth made her a joy to work with and her spirit will be remembered.”

The Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, said their family is saddened by the news of hearing that Ms Emmett had passed away. “She fought a very courageous battle against cancer,” said Mr Howard, “On behalf of Janette and myself, I extend my deepest sympathies to her husband, Rove McManus, and her family and friends.”

The leader of the opposition, Kim Beazley, said that their family had also passed on their sympathy to the Emmett and McManus families. “This is truly sad news which I think will affect all Australians,” Mr Beazley said, “The tenderness and care in their relationship (Rove and Belinda) through their adversity, I think, has been an inspiration to many many Australians.”

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Reports: North Korean officials may meet with United States officials in New York

Reports: North Korean officials may meet with United States officials in New York

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

Reports have surfaced that officials from North Korea may meet with officials from the United States in New York City to talk about the sanctions against North Korea and other problems between the two countries. The meeting may take place sometime next week and is aimed at getting 6-party talks, regarding North Korea’s nuclear program, back on track.

Despite the reports by media sources, The White House in Washington D.C. has denied that any plans of the sort exist.

“[We] are not aware of any plans for a meeting,” said a spokesman for the White House, Tony Fratto.

Officials at the State Department refused to comment on the reports.

“I cannot comment on the reports,” said a spokesman for the State Department, Kurtis Cooper.

On October 31, 2006, officials from the U.S. met with North Korean officials in Beijing, China which led the North Koreans to agree to return to 6-party talks regarding North Korea’s nuclear program.

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Massive hurricane spotted on Saturn

Massive hurricane spotted on Saturn – Wikinews, the free news source

Massive hurricane spotted on Saturn

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

These images of Saturn’s south pole, taken by two different instruments on Cassini, show the hurricane-like storm swirling

NASA’s Cassini Spacecraft has captured images of a massive hurricane on the planet Saturn. The storm is located on Saturn’s south pole. This type of event has never been observed on another planet except for Earth.

“It looks like a hurricane, but it doesn’t behave like a hurricane. Whatever it is, we’re going to focus on the eye of this storm and find out why it’s there,” said Doctor Andrew Ingersoll, a member of Cassini’s imaging team at the California Institute of Technology located in Pasadena.

The storm is approximately 5,000 miles across or roughly two-thirds the diameter of Earth and is stationary. The winds in the storm, which are blowing clockwise are reaching about 350 miles per hour and two spiral arms of clouds are extending from the center of the storm. Scientists say that the storm’s clouds are anywhere between three to five times taller and larger than any clouds found on Earth.

It is not known what has caused the storm to form.

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Liverpool City Council audit produces 43 recommendations

Liverpool City Council audit produces 43 recommendations

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

An investigation by KPMG into contracts by Liverpool City Council produced 43 recommendations, relating to council joint ventures Liverpool Direct with British Telecom and Liverpool Enterprise with Enterprise plc.

The recommendations include reducing the informal contact between Council staff and those of the contractors, limits on the time between members of staff leaving the council and joining the contractors.

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