Saturday, December 31, 2011

Vt. set to reopen last highway destroyed by Irene (AP)

MONTPELIER, Vt. ? After the hauling of hundreds of thousands of tons of rock and tens of thousands of man-hours on heavy equipment, Vermont is ready to celebrate the completion of a Herculean task and the biggest single engineering challenge following the flooding from the remnants of Hurricane Irene: the reopening of the last state highway washed out by the storm.

Just in time for the new year, and four months after the storm hit, Vermont officials are planning to mark the reopening of Route 107 between Bethel and Stockbridge. The state highway is the last to reopen after being closed by flooding.

The ceremony Thursday at the Stockbridge Central School marks the completion of a huge undertaking in the state's recovery, but much remains to be done as dozens are still struggling to rebuild their homes and their lives. The state is just totaling up the bill, and the Legislature is preparing to deal with a variety of Irene-induced, long-term challenges.

But it was the repairing of Route 107 that posed one of the biggest challenges following the storm that left a dozen towns cut off from the outside world for days, damaged or destroyed more than 500 miles of roads and 200 bridges, killed six and reshaped much of the low-lying countryside.

The stretch of highway between Bethel and Stockbridge is one of the state's major east-west arteries, and sections of the highway were part of the riverbank where the road and the White River pass through a narrow cut in the Green Mountains. Irene's run through Vermont on Aug. 28 funneled record volumes of water through that narrow pass where it slammed the riverbanks and, eventually, tore them to pieces.

"All of a sudden the road ended and then we were looking at river and mud and what used to be huge sheets of asphalt that had shifted into the river," said Maine Army National Guard Capt. Norman Stickney, of Gardiner, who arrived five days after the storm to begin rebuilding. "It was like something fell from the sky and completely crushed all of the asphalt and scooped it away and dumped it into the river."

Irene tore Vermont apart. The downtowns of communities as far apart as Whitingham in southern Vermont to Waterbury, just west of Montpelier, were flooded to levels not seen since the state's epic flood of 1927.

The remnants of Irene forced the state to abandon, at least for now, much of its office complex In Waterbury, which was damaged by the storm, and the administration of Gov. Peter Shumlin is now making plans to find a new place for the patients who had been at the State Hospital ? part of the Waterbury office complex.

"In the last four months, Vermont has made remarkable progress in repairing and rebuilding damaged infrastructure," said Neale Lunderville, the state's specially appointed chief recovery officer. "We have made strong progress to assist individuals and families who have been affected by Irene, but in both cases there will still be much to do as part of the ongoing recovery."

Lunderville said it would be years before much of Vermont and many Vermont families are back to what he calls "a new normal."

"If we want to have a robust recovery and one that brings us back to a place where we are stronger, smarter and safer than before Irene, we have to continue to remember what Irene did and what we need to do to recover from that," Lunderville said. "It's going to take a concerted effort and ongoing attention at high levels in order for us to have a really strong recovery."

In the three-mile section of road that was hardest hit, about 4,000 feet of Route 107 road was completely gone, said Vermont Transportation Agency Engineer Eric Foster, who oversaw the rebuilding of the highway. A job that would normally take two years was done in 119 days after the first work crews ? the soldiers from the Maine National Guard and other states ? arrived.

In addition to the guard, it took two contractors, 250,000 tons of rock, at least 20,000 hours of heavy equipment time, 7,500 feet of guardrail, 38 culverts and 46 companies over 16 weeks to repair the highway, according to information provided by the Vermont Transportation Agency.

The biggest challenge was getting the rocks and other fill material to Bethel. A special "rock train" was used to bring fill from distant quarries before it was unloaded a couple of miles from the work site. The train saved an estimated 6,600 truck trips and 55,000 gallons of diesel fuel.

In other parts of the state, officials have said some of the repairs, done on the fly to get traffic moving again, might have to be redone. That's not the case for Route 107.

The roadway was built with layers of different sized rock and the banks sloped to withstand another Irene, said Glenn Cairns, of the Windham, N.H., contractor George Cairns and Sons, which brought its specialized equipment ? excavators and dump trucks that are up to twice the size of those usually found on Vermont highway projects.

It's designed to withstand another "Irene, plus two feet," said Foster.

Both Stickney and Cairn said they were amazed by how grateful Vermonters were despite the challenges they faced.

"Even though these people, their lives were turned upside down, they were friendly," Cairns said. "They really didn't mind sitting in traffic waiting for us ? the hardship that they went through and everybody was just thankful and waved and smiled.

"They went through a lot. I could understand how they could be bitter, `why isn't my road back together,' but I've got to say the people were just extremely friendly and welcoming."


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Friday, December 30, 2011

Italy raises $14 billion at much lower rates (AP)

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ROME (AP) ? Italy saw investors more willing to part with their cash Wednesday as it raised euro10.7 billion ($14 billion) in a pair of auctions, a sign that market jitters may be easing as the country presses ahead with its austerity measures.

The lower rates Italy had to pay are the first post-Christmas test of sentiment in the markets over the debt crisis that has engulfed the 17 countries that use the euro, and may be a signal that some of last week's massive injection of money into the European banking system from the European Central Bank may be filtering through into government bonds.

The scale of the falls in Italy's funding costs were dramatic and helped the country's benchmark ten-year bond yield in the markets ease further below the 7 percent level, widely considered to be unsustainable in the long-run.

The Bank of Italy said the average yield on its euro9 billion ($11.8 billion) six-month bill offering was 3.251 percent, half the 6.504 percent rate it had to pay at the equivalent auction last month. And an auction of two-year bonds, which raised euro1.732 billion ($2.3 billion), also saw the yield fall to 4.853 percent from 7.814 percent last month.

Italy is the eurozone's third-largest economy and is considered too big to save under the eurozone's current bailout funds. Markets have grown fearful over the past few months that Italy will find it difficult to pay off its massive debts, which stand at around euro1.9 trillion ($2.5 trillion).

A further test of investors' appetite for Italian debt will come Thursday when the country offers more bonds, that could potentially raise a similar amount to Wednesday's offerings.

"Today's result sends a positive signal ahead of tomorrow three-year and ten-year auction," said Luca Cazzulani, deputy head of fixed income strategy at Unicredit.

Mario Monti, the country's new premier, got parliamentary approval last week for more spending cuts and tax increases intended to save the country from financial disaster. One of the most controversial aspects of the austerity package is reform of Italy's bloated pension system.

Later Wednesday, Monti is to chair a Cabinet meeting on a second wave of measures designed to boost Italy's anemic economy, which is expected to enter into recession in the first quarter of the new year.

The market responded positively to the auctions, with Italian shares outperforming their peers in Europe ? the main FTSE MIB index was up 0.9 percent by lunchtime ? and the yield on the country's 10-year bond back down at 6.75 percent. On Tuesday, the yield had spiked over 7 percent ? a level that is considered unsustainable in the long run and eventually forced Greece, Ireland and Portugal to seek outside financial help.

The lower borrowing costs appeared a consequence of increased confidence that Monti's efforts will keep the country's finances on a sustainable path.

Demand for the bonds could also have been supported as well by a large infusion of credit to eurozone banks last week from the European Central Bank. There has been speculation that the stronger banks might use the cheap, long-term loans ? on which the current interest rate is 1 percent ? to purchase government bonds that carry higher interest rates and profit from the difference.

That could support both government and bank finances. But it would run contrary to efforts by many banks to lower their exposure to bonds issued by heavily indebted governments.


AP Business Writer David McHugh contributed from Frankfurt, Germany.


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Russian court may ban Hare Krishna text (AP)

MOSCOW ? A Russian court is to decide Wednesday whether a religious text central to the global Hare Krishna movement is "extremist' and should be banned, in a case that has angered Hindus around the world and highlights the continuing challenges for minority religions in Russia.

Prosecutors in the Siberian city of Tomsk have argued that the Russian translation of "Bhagavad Gita As It Is" promotes "social discord" and hatred toward nonbelievers. The text is a combination of the Bhagavad Gita, one of Hinduism's holiest scriptures, and commentary by A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, founder of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness that is often called the Hare Krishna movement.

The prosecutors are asking the court to include the book on the Federal List of Extremist Materials, which bans more than 1,000 texts including Adolf Hitler's "Mein Kampf" and books distributed by the Jehovah's Witness and Scientology movements.

Yuri Pleshkov, a spokesman for the group in Russia, said the book in question has existed in Russia for 25 years and has never inspired violence or extremist activity.

"On the contrary, this book teaches humane attitude towards all living beings," Pleshkov said.

The trial follows this year's ban on the construction of a Hare Krishna village in Tomsk and is based on an assessment by professors at Tomsk University, who concluded that "Bhagavad Gita As It Is" includes strong language against nonbelievers and promotes religious hatred and discrimination on the basis of gender, race, nationality and language.

The trial began in June and was scheduled to conclude on Dec. 19, just after Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's two-day visit to Russia. That day protesters gathered outside the Russian consulate in Kolkata, and the speaker of India's lower house of parliament adjourned the body for several hours after members began shouting in anger over the proposed ban.

Officials in Tomsk agreed to hear further testimony from experts and the Russian ombudsman for human rights and postponed the court decision until Wednesday.

Indian officials last week appealed to high-level Russian authorities to intervene.

The Bhagavad Gita "is not merely a religious text, but one of the defining treatises of Indian thought," said Indian Ambassador to Russia Ajai Malhotra in a statement. "The Bhagavad Gita has circulated freely across the world for centuries and there is not a single instance of it having encouraged extremism."

The Foreign Ministry insisted that the Tomsk court is not taking issue with core Hindu scripture itself, but rather with the author's commentary and poor translation in "Bhagavad Gita As It Is."

"I would like to emphasize that this is not about 'Bhagavad Gita,' a religious philosophical poem, which forms part of the great Indian epic Mahabharata and is one of the most famous pieces of the ancient Hindu literature," ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said at a briefing in Moscow on Thursday, adding that the book was first published in Russian in 1788.

Still, followers of the Hare Krishna movement in Russia see the proposed ban as a result of continued intolerance of minority religions by the Russian Orthodox Church. Pleshkov estimates there are at least 150,000 Hare Krishna devotees in Russia.

"The current problem is, above all, the misuse of the law on combating extremism," Pleshkov said. "It is used to search for enemies where they can not even be defined."

In 2005 a Russian Orthodox archbishop asked the mayor of Moscow to ban the construction of a proposed Hare Krishna temple, calling the Hindu deity Krishna "an evil demon, the personified power of hell opposing God," according to Interfax. The temple was later allowed in a Moscow suburb.


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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Video: Porsche Police Cars on Parade in Qatar

Porsche, Qatar, Videos ? By Lawrence on December 28, 2011 at 11:26 am ? No Comments

Porsche Police Cars on Parade in Qatar

We stumbled across a video today showing a procession of Porsche Panamera and Cayenne police cars in the sovereign Arab state of Qatar celebrating the 2011 Qatar National Day. We?re not sure whether these are all real police cars but it seems perfectly plausible. Qatar is a known investor in both Porsche and it?s parent company the Volkswagen group.

Every December 18th, Qatar celebrates their National Day in commemoration of the historic day in 1878 when Shaikh Jasim, the founder of the State of Qatar, succeeded his father, Shaikh Muhammad Bin Thani, as the ruler and led the country toward unity. December 18th is the day they remember how their national unity was achieved, and this impressive parade was part of it.


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Al-Qaida in Iraq says it was behind Baghdad blasts (AP)

BAGHDAD ? An al-Qaida front group in Iraq has claimed responsibility for the wave of attacks that ripped through markets, cafes and government buildings in Baghdad on a single day last week, killing 69 people and raising new worries about the country's path.

The coordinated attacks struck a dozen mostly Shiite neighborhoods on Thursday in the first major bloodshed since U.S. troops completed a full withdrawal this month after nearly nine years of war. They also coincided with a government crisis that has again strained ties between Iraq's Sunnis and Shiites to the breaking point, tearing at the same fault line that nearly pushed Iraq into all-out civil war several years ago.

The claim of responsibility made no mention of the U.S. withdrawal. Instead, it focused its rage on the country's Shiite-dominated leadership, which Sunni insurgents have battled since it came to power as a result of the U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.

"The series of special invasions (was) launched ... to support the weak Sunnis in the prisons of the apostates and to retaliate for the captives who were executed," said the statement in the name of the Islamic State of Iraq.

According to the SITE Intelligence Group, a U.S.-based organization that monitors jihadist Web traffic, the claim of responsibility was posted late Monday on militant websites.

The group said the attacks were proof that they "know where and when to strike and the mujahedeen will never stand with their hands tied while the pernicious Iranian project shows its ugly face."

The remark was in reference to accusations by Sunni militants that Iraq's Shiite-dominated government has allied itself too closely with neighboring Shiite power Iran, a bitter enemy of Iraq under the regime of Saddam Hussein.

The Baghdad military spokesman, Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi, said al-Qaida in Iraq ? no longer focused on fighting U.S. forces ? is hoping to take advantage of the current political tension to re-ignite sectarian warfare.

"It has become a clear scheme to draw Iraq into a sectarian war again," al-Moussawi said. "Al-Qaida in Iraq played a major role in 2005 and 2006 in pushing the county into a civil war and they succeeded."

On Tuesday morning, a car bomb exploded near a police station in the town of Hawija, 150 miles (240 kilometers) north of Baghdad, killing two civilians and injuring another, said Kirkuk police commander Brig. Gen. Sarhad Qadir.

U.S. and some Iraqi officials have warned of a resurgence of Sunni and Shiite militants and an increase in violence after the U.S. troop withdrawal.

Along with the security challenge, Iraq is facing an increase in political tension as Iraq's Shiite prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, is engaged in a showdown with the top Sunni political leader in the country.

Al-Maliki's government has issued an arrest warrant for Sunni Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi on charges that he ran hit squads against government officials.

Al-Hashemi has denied the charges and said they are politically motivated.


Associated Press writer Qassim Abdul-Zahra contributed to this report.


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Europe Factors-Shares set to rise ahead of Italian debt sale

Thu Dec 29, 2011 2:26am EST

PARIS, Dec 29 (Reuters) - European stock index futures point to a higher open on Thursday, with stocks set to reverse some of the previous session's losses and revive their year-end rally ahead of a key bond auction in Italy.	    By 0721 GMT, futures for Euro STOXX 50, for  Germany's DAX  and for France's CAC were up 0.4-0.7 percent.	     Italy plans to sell up to 8.5 billion euros of bonds, including new tranches of its three-year and 10-year benchmarks, in its first long-term debt sale since ECB's huge three-year funding operation last week.	     Italian bond yields are expected to retreat from recent record highs at the auction, which would signal the ECB move has managed to ease market pressure, but analysts doubted whether the ECB measures and domestic progress on reform would be enough to see Italy smoothly over its refinancing hurdles from January to April, when some 91 billion euros of its bonds come due. 	     The euro zone's blue chip Euro STOXX 50 index dropped 1.5 percent on Wednesday, halting its year-end rally and breaking below its 50-day moving average, sending a bearish technical signal.	     The drop in euro zone equities mirrored a sharp fall in the euro currency , which hit a near one-year low against the dollar, hurt by fresh concerns over the region's debt crisis as well as last-minute adjustments to hedging strategies, IG Markets dealer Chris Weston said.	     "Whilst most of the moves in the euro have been attributed to the ever ballooning balance sheet of the ECB, yesterday was the last day of the year for U.S. corporates to hedge before year-end given the time needed for settlement, so the strength in the U.S. dollar and subsequent weakness in the British pound and the euro would have largely been influenced by that."	     Despite the recent massive liquidity injection by the European Central Bank, banks still appear to distrust each other and prefer to deposit their money at the ECB's overnight facility than lend to each other. Latest figures show banks deposited 452 billion euros ($591 billion) at the central bank. Emergency overnight borrowing also remained high at above 6 billion euros.	     MARKET SNAPSHOT AT 0711 GMT                                                                           LAST  PCT CHG   NET CHG     S&P 500                              1,249.64  -1.25 %    -15.79     NIKKEI                               8,398.89  -0.29 %    -24.73     MSCI ASIA EX-JP                        457.68  -0.25 %     -1.14     EUR/USD                                1.2939   0.02 %    0.0003     USD/JPY                                 77.69  -0.31 %   -0.2400     10-YR US TSY YLD                        1.928       --      0.01     10-YR BUND YLD                          1.896       --     -0.01     SPOT GOLD                           $1,548.81  -0.41 %    -$6.38     US CRUDE                               $99.36      0 %      0.00  	     	     Wall St ends 5-day rally on renewed euro-zone concerns    	     GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian stocks inch lower, euro extends drop 	     Nikkei falls, market tense ahead of Italian bond sale     	     FOREX-Euro hits 10-year low vs yen, stops add to losses   	     Gold wallows near 3-month low; Italy bond sale eyed       	     Copper drops as firm dollar weighs; Italy bond sale eyed  	     Brent oil steadies above $107, dollar weighs              	     	     COMPANY NEWS:	     	     PETROPLUS  	     France's government on Wednesday offered embattled Swiss refiner Petroplus help in its talk with lenders as the firm neared a stoppage of its plants in five European countries due to a lack of crude while an angry trade union called for their nationalisation.	     	     EDF 	     Italy market regulator Consob is unlikely to call on the French state-controlled power company to offer minority shareholders in Edison a higher price than the one it offered core Italian investors to win control of Italy's No.2 utility, market operators said on Wednesday.	     	     RWE  	     The utility generated more power from lignite this year than in 2010 and margins from carbon emissions rights have improved, which could help soften the blow from Germany's move to exit nuclear power, Boersen-Zeitung reported, citing company sources.	     	     INTESA SANPAOLO  	     Investment banking in Italy will see selective mergers and acquisitions, bank capital hikes and a pick-up in corporate bonds in 2012, after slower activity in the last six months, the head of investment banking at Intesa's unit Banca IMI said in an interview. 	     	     ATLANTIA  	     Italy's government is considering a toll-road fee increase of 1.8 percent from January, a government source said on Wednesday. 	     	     BANCA POPOLARE DELL'EMILIA ROMAGNA  	     The bank has signed a definitive contract for the sale of its mutual fund business run under the Optima brand to the cooperative bank-owned Arca SGR, it said on Wednesday without giving a price. 	 	     CARMAKERS  	     South Korean carmaker Hyundai Motor aims to boost its market share in Europe to 5 percent by 2015 from 3 percent now, the South Korean carmaker's deputy European chief Allan Rushforth told a German newspaper.  	     	     CONTINENTAL AG  	    The automotive supplier expects business to remain strong through the end of the first quarter, bolstered by demand in the United States and in Asia, its chief executive told a German newspaper.


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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pro Football Hall of Fame Toddler Buddies T-Shirt

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Prepare your little fan for future NFL? stardom with this Pro Football Hall of Fame? toddler Buddies t-shirt. This adorable tee features a football graphic screenprinted on the chest with Hall of Fame text.

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SW PA man jailed after shooting wife over Facebook time

WASHINGTON, Pa. (AP) ? A southwestern Pennsylvania man has been jailed on attempted homicide and other charges for allegedly trying to shoot his wife because he believes she spends too much time on the Facebook social networking site.

Fifty-one-year-old Harry Hibbs Jr., of Eighty-Four, remained jailed Monday unable to post $500,000 bail set by a judge after his arrest on Christmas Eve.

North Strabane Township police say there were two children in the home at the time, and that Hibbs' wife was holding one of them ? a 2-year-old ? when he pushed her to the ground and hit her in the head with a gun. Police say Hibbs then tried to shoot the woman, but the gun malfunctioned.

Online court records don't list an attorney for Hibbs, who is also charged with assault and reckless endangerment.


?2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Ameeee_1D: Someone pretty please tell me if Im on twitter for android or mobile twitter?

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Asian shares steady in thin holiday trade, U.S. market eyed (Reuters)

TOKYO (Reuters) ? Asian shares were steady on Tuesday in thin volume as investors took to the sidelines before U.S. markets reopen later in the day from a long weekend and data which could offer clues over growth prospects in the world's largest economy.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) was nearly flat for a second day in a row, while Japan's Nikkei stock average (.N225) opened down 0.43 percent.

The euro was steady around $1.3050, staying well above its 11-month trough of $1.2945 hit earlier this month.

European and some Asian markets, including Hong Kong and Australia, were closed on Tuesday.

"Shares are expected to drift sideways as passive interests prevail in typical year-end fashion, and as many stock markets were closed for the holidays yesterday, providing no dynamic whatsoever," said Lee Kyung-soo, an analyst at Shinyoung Securities.

On Monday, when more markets were closed, Japanese and Indian stocks outperformed the rest of Asia in thin trade, with sentiment partly lifted by signs of U.S. economic recovery.

U.S. holiday season sales were expected to rise 3.8 percent to a record $469.1 billion, the National Retail Federation said, slower than last year's growth but stronger than its preseason forecast.

The potential brisk sales could reinforce emerging views the U.S. economy is strengthening fundamentally, and follows recent data showing improvement the labout market. The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits hit a 3-1/2-year low in the week shortly before Christmas while consumer sentiment scaled a six-month high in December.

Investors will be looking for more positive signs from data this week, including the S&P Case-Shiller house price index for October and consumer confidence for December.

Sentiment has been underpinned by solid performances in U.S. equities, and strong data this week could help global markets end the year in positive tone.

The broad Standard & Poor's 500 Index (.SPX) broke through its 200-day moving average after a four-day rally lifted stocks to bring the index into positive territory, and the Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI) rose to its highest in five months on Friday.

Persistent worries about progress in resolving the euro zone debt crisis could dampen sentiment when European markets reopen later in the week.

Bank of Japan minutes for its November 15-16 meeting showed on Tuesday BOJ board members were worried that unstable global financial markets were affecting Japan's markets to some extent.

(Additional reporting by Joonhee Yu in Seoul; Editing by Ron Popeski)


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Monday, December 26, 2011

Cleburne family killed in Mexico robbery spree



Posted on December 24, 2011 at 9:55 PM

Updated yesterday at 10:21 PM

CLEBURNE ? A Cleburne mother and two daughters have been killed in a series of attacks on buses in northern Mexico. Maria Hartsell, 39, and her daughters Karla Hartsell, 19, and Cristina Hartsell, 13, were among the seven people who lost their lives.

?I can?t sleep at night,? said Hartsell?s mother-in-law Margaret Schneider of Cleburne. ?I shut my eyes and I see them.?

Schneider says Hartsell ? who is a U.S. citizen ? was traveling with her four children to visit family members for the holidays in the region known as Huasteca. A group of five gunmen attacked three buses in Mexico?s Gulf Coast state of Veracruz on Thursday in what authorities described as a violent robbery spree.

Soldiers apparently killed the gunmen later.

Schneider said Hartsell?s other daughter Angie was also shot, but her condition is unknown. She said another grandchild, Mike Hartsell, 10, survived, but told her he watched the gunmen murder his mother and sister after killing the bus driver.

?Little Mike told me? they turned around and came back and shot her (his mother) in the head with the gun and they shot Karla,? Schneider said. ?He said he knew that his mom and Karla were dead.?

Schneider said Hartsell worked in the cafeteria at Cleburne?s Santa Fe Elementary School.

The U.S. Consulate has urged Americans to ?exercise caution? when traveling to Veracruz, and to ?avoid intercity road travel at night.?

While the specific area where the Thursday attacks occurred is not frequented by foreign travelers, other parts of the Huasteca? ? a hilly, verdant area on the Gulf coast? ? are popular among Mexican tourists and some foreigners.

The attack occurred near the border with the state of Tamaulipas, an area that has been the scene of bloody battles between the Zetas and Gulf drug cartels. According to some estimates, more than 40,000 people have been killed over the past five years in Mexico?s ongoing drug war.

Schneider said she begged her daughter-in-law not to take the trip.

?I told her not to go to Mexico. I just kept repeating it,? Schneider said. ?Why did they have to lose their life? It?s just senseless.?



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GALAXY BLING @ Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom Denver 1-12-2012




Born and raised in Los Angeles, CA, ChrisB aka Chris Brown was immersed in West Coast flavor since day one. Drawn to music and art from an early age, Chris grew up with an instrument in his hands. Although new to production, his obsessive musical passion is palpable in the deep and sensual soundscapes he meticulously weaves. Boldly exploring vast melodic realms full of hypnotic textures and a heavy dose of emotionally-resonant
driving bass, ChrisB?s high energy live performances never fail to inspire.

__________________________________________________ _________________


(TreeThugger, FRESH2Death)

With over 10 years of DJing and 2 years of Producing experience, the last several years have catapulted Greg Fisk to be a staple and innovator in the Denver/Boulder electronic music scene. Having played shows from Arizona to Tennessee, Texas to Illinois, and all throughout his home base of Colorado, Fisk knows a thing or two about getting crowds amped. His originally produced tracks use synth-driven, experimental hip hop style?s, which takes the listener on a journey of sound innovation and musical mysteriousness. Cascading and blending the likes of Glitch-Hop, Electro, Whomp, Dubstep, and Crunk, Fisk has something up his sleeve for every environment, emotion, and entity his mind can conceive of. Fisk is continually pushing the limits of live music manipulation and strives to keep every live performance unique, fresh, and most importantly ?Head Noddin?.
__________________________________________________ _________________

Intergalactic Fantasy Safari

Intergalactic Fantasy Safari is the brainchild of MADELINE and Synthetic Dialect, both based in Denver CO. IFS is both a performance and production force, with live performances featuring them at the helm and enhanced through performers and interchangeable live musicians.
Synthetic Dialect is both a producer and dj that incorporates various music styles and sounds into his music, with bass always being a driving element. His passion with music began at a young age, and many years of vocal and guitar experience expanded his love for music. A founding member of Intergalactic Fantasy Safari with MADELINE, he strives to bring creativity and originality into music and live performances combining elements of dubstep, glitch-hop, and his own unique brand of sound.
Formerly known as Fetish Dolly, MADELINE is originally from Massachusetts. She threw her first party with Dj Venom @ Club Hell in Providence, RI in 2005 and never stopped since. Moved to NYC to promote at The infamous LIMELIGHT. Then found herself in Denver where she started playing out at burningman and Apogea on systems such as BASSCOACH. She has toured Europe playing in Amsterdam, London, Rome & Athens as well as most of the United states. Here to bring you bass.

(MADELINE, Synthetic Dialect, Ben E. King)

__________________________________________________ ________________


Skyless is Caleb Arrants, an electronic producer from Denver, Colorado who produces bass-centric music with elements of glitch-hop, dubstep, drum n? bass, soul and other genres. Originating in the talent heavy music scene of Denver, Skyless creates a unique electronic style with no limits to appeal to all listeners. Skyless creates live environments full of emotion and energy with melodic progressions but heavy basslines to keep the crowd on their feet.
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BIO comming soon.

__________________________________________________ ________________

Cervantes Ballroom

$12 for under 21
Free for 21+ before 10pm

Purchase Tickets Here:


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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Recall Roundup: Oil Filter Problems in Some Nissan and Infiniti Large Cars/SUVs/Vans

Nissan is recalling some Infiniti and Nissan models to fix a weak bolt between the oil filter and cooler that could result in an oil leak and/or a seized engine.

The Problem: Nissan is recalling some models that have weak bolts connecting the engine oil filter and engine oil cooler. If the bolt breaks at the point where it attaches to the filter, the engine oil will leak out, and if the oil level drops too low, the engine could seize. The problem was found on some 2011 Infiniti FX sport-utility vehicle and 2012 M sedan, as well as the 2011-2012 Pathfinder and Xterra SUVs, the 2012 Frontier pickup truck, and the 2012 Nissan NV van. The affected models were made at some point between June and October of this year.

The Fix: Nissan will contact owners of the affected models and replace the weak bolt with a stronger one. Because all of these cars are still under warranty, the recall is at no cost to the owner. The recall is scheduled to start some time mid-January 2012, but owners can call Nissan directly at 1-800-647-7261 with any questions.

Number of Vehicles Potentially Affected: 14,718 vehicles; 30 Infiniti FXs, 92 Infiniti Ms, 6820 Nissan Frontiers, 3194 Nissan Xterras, 3023 Nissan Pathfinders, and 1554 Nissan NVs.

Source: NHTSA


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Flacco leads Ravens to 20-14 win over Browns (AP)

BALTIMORE ? Joe Flacco threw two touchdown passes, and the Baltimore Ravens beat the Cleveland Browns 20-14 on Saturday to move one step closer to winning the AFC North.

Ray Rice ran for 87 yards and caught a TD pass for the Ravens (11-4), who led 17-0 at halftime and held on against the bumbling Browns. Baltimore completed its first unbeaten season at home (8-0).

The Ravens would win the AFC North by defeating Cincinnati on the road next week. That would also give them a first-round bye and a home playoff game.

Josh Cribbs had a career-high 84-yard punt return for Cleveland (4-11). But the Browns generated very little offense and were victimized by questionable play calling, bad clock management and untimely penalties in their fifth straight loss.


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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Top-Performing U.S.-Listed Chinese Stocks (Dec 22, 2011)

Below are the latest top-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stocks. International Ltd (NASDAQ:DATE) is the best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 11.8% on the day. DATE's upside potential is 136.3% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $15.22. It is trading at 40.0% of its 52-week high of $16.12, and 17.1% above its 52-week low of $5.50. E Commerce China Dangdang Inc (ADR) (NYSE:DANG) is the second best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 9.6% on the day. DANG's upside potential is 110.9% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $9.83. It is trading at 12.8% of its 52-week high of $36.40, and 13.4% above its 52-week low of $4.11. LDK Solar Co., Ltd (ADR) (NYSE:LDK) is the third best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 7.8% on the day. LDK's upside potential is -14.5% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $4.48. It is trading at 35.0% of its 52-week high of $14.97, and 105.5% above its 52-week low of $2.55. Home Inns & Hotels Management Inc. (ADR) (NASDAQ:HMIN) is the fourth best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 7.2% on the day. HMIN's upside potential is 72.7% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $47.69. It is trading at 61.5% of its 52-week high of $44.86, and 25.0% above its 52-week low of $22.09. VanceInfo Technologies Inc.(ADR) (NYSE:VIT) is the fifth best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 6.0% on the day. VIT's upside potential is 102.0% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $18.24. It is trading at 23.8% of its 52-week high of $37.99, and 45.9% above its 52-week low of $6.19. Trina Solar Limited (ADR) (NYSE:TSL) is the sixth best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 5.9% on the day. TSL's upside potential is 76.8% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $13.07. It is trading at 23.8% of its 52-week high of $31.08, and 40.0% above its 52-week low of $5.28. AsiaInfo-Linkage, Inc. (NASDAQ:ASIA) is the seventh best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 5.8% on the day. ASIA's upside potential is 147.0% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $17.44. It is trading at 30.8% of its 52-week high of $22.91, and 13.7% above its 52-week low of $6.21. International, Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:CTRP) is the eighth best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 5.8% on the day. CTRP's upside potential is 86.0% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $44.30. It is trading at 47.1% of its 52-week high of $50.57, and 6.7% above its 52-week low of $22.33. Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:STP) is the ninth best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 5.3% on the day. STP's upside potential is 84.7% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $4.43. It is trading at 22.2% of its 52-week high of $10.83, and 41.2% above its 52-week low of $1.70. Focus Media Holding Limited (ADR) (NASDAQ:FMCN) is the 10th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 5.0% on the day. FMCN's upside potential is 91.3% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $40.23. It is trading at 56.0% of its 52-week high of $37.58, and 139.2% above its 52-week low of $8.79. Simcere Pharmaceutical Group (ADR) (NYSE:SCR) is the 11th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 4.9% on the day. SCR's upside potential is 26.8% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $9.98. It is trading at 57.2% of its 52-week high of $13.75, and 10.5% above its 52-week low of $7.12. Inc. (NASDAQ:SOHU) is the 12th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 4.8% on the day. SOHU's upside potential is 54.0% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $78.38. It is trading at 46.5% of its 52-week high of $109.37, and 12.1% above its 52-week low of $45.40. 7 DAYS GROUP HOLDINGS LIMITED(ADR) (NYSE:SVN) is the 13th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 4.7% on the day. SVN's upside potential is 108.1% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $24.03. It is trading at 48.1% of its 52-week high of $24.00, and 5.9% above its 52-week low of $10.91. ReneSola Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:SOL) is the 14th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 4.1% on the day. SOL's upside potential is 61.6% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $2.86. It is trading at 13.4% of its 52-week high of $13.25, and 22.1% above its 52-week low of $1.45. China Lodging Group, Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ:HTHT) is the 15th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 4.0% on the day. HTHT's upside potential is 62.4% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $21.82. It is trading at 54.9% of its 52-week high of $24.47, and 11.9% above its 52-week low of $12.00. JA Solar Holdings Co., Ltd. (ADR) (NASDAQ:JASO) is the 16th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 3.8% on the day. JASO's upside potential is 127.8% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $3.14. It is trading at 16.1% of its 52-week high of $8.57, and 14.0% above its 52-week low of $1.21. Renren Inc (NYSE:RENN) is the 17th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 3.7% on the day. RENN's upside potential is 124.1% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $7.62. It is trading at 14.2% of its 52-week high of $24.00, and 5.9% above its 52-week low of $3.21. iSoftStone Holdings Ltd (ADR) (NYSE:ISS) is the 18th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 3.6% on the day. ISS's upside potential is 104.0% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $17.20. It is trading at 37.3% of its 52-week high of $22.63, and 48.9% above its 52-week low of $5.66. New Oriental Education & Tech Grp (ADR) (NYSE:EDU) is the 19th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 3.4% on the day. EDU's upside potential is 47.7% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $35.30. It is trading at 68.7% of its 52-week high of $34.77, and 15.9% above its 52-week low of $20.61. 51job, Inc. (ADR) (NASDAQ:JOBS) is the 20th best-performing U.S.-listed Chinese stock on Dec. 22. It was up 3.2% on the day. JOBS's upside potential is 46.8% based on brokerage analysts' average target price of $64.50. It is trading at 63.0% of its 52-week high of $69.80, and 20.0% above its 52-week low of $36.62.


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Friday, December 23, 2011

What the GOP Can Learn from Its Own Mistakes (ContributorNetwork)

With the Iowa caucus now less than two weeks away, the formerly wide field of Republican presidential candidates is narrowing further. Early frontrunners, such as Rep. Michele Bachmann, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and businessman Herman Cain, have all taken a nosedive in recent public opinion polls. As is usually the case with politicians, the candidates' own boneheaded blunders caused their fall from grace.

What lessons can the GOP learn from these "don't-ever-do-that-again" mistakes?

Don't take sexual harassment lightly.

Herman Cain found out the hard way that simply waving away allegations of sexual harassment can be fatal to a presidential campaign. The former Godfather's Pizza executive surged in the polls this fall, capturing the hearts and minds of conservatives with his confident speeches and his "9-9-9" tax plan. Then came the women. Five of them to be exact, all stepping forward with stories of Cain's inappropriate sexual behavior and extramarital affairs.

Cain's claimed they were all lying, even after the women produced a paper trail of phone records, text messages, and alleged hush money payments. The voters weren't buying it, however, and Cain's campaign came to an abrupt and embarrassing end Dec. 3. Aw, shucky ducky.

Don't keep repeating the same mistakes.

Of all the hopefuls for the GOP nomination, Michele Bachmann has earned the most four-Pinocchio ratings from the Washington Post for her tendency to keep on repeating statements that have already been proven incorrect. Bachmann's assertions that the HPV vaccine is a "dangerous drug," that "the Congressional Budget Office said Obamacare will kill 800,000 jobs," and that the president's health care plan is "socialized medicine," were all debunked months ago. Yet she continued to repeat these claims, refusing to admit she goofed.

By early fall, Bachmann's staffers, campaign donors, and supporters began to depart her campaign in droves. Recent polls show her tied for tenth place in New Hampshire, falling from second place back in June.

Don't forget to bring your cheat sheet to the podium.

It was the "oops" heard 'round the world. At the CNBC presidential debate, Rick Perry's campaign imploded right before our very eyes. When asked to name which government agencies he would eliminate as president, Perry seemed to experience a case of brain lock. As the world watched in astonishment, Perry stumbled and fumbled for 50 seconds struggling to name the departments of Commerce, Education, and Energy.

Realizing he'd just tanked his own campaign, Perry told reporters after the debate: "I'm glad I had my boots on because I really stepped in it tonight."

Don't underestimate the underdog.

Until recently, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas was the guy GOP party establishment types and the mainstream media shunned, ridiculed, or completely overlooked. So invisible was Paul at the televised debates, The Daily Show's Jon Stewart incredulously asked, "how did Ron Paul become the 13th floor in a hotel?" But now he's become the candidate that's impossible to ignore. In the latest Iowa State/Gazette/KCRG survey released Wednesday, Paul has skyrocketed to first place, sailing past Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney and inducing a code red panic within his own party.

This is Dr. Paul's third try for the presidency, having run as a Libertarian in 1988 and as a Republican in 2008. And if his recent surge in the Iowa and New Hampshire polls is any indication, the third time might just be the charm.


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Where did New Hanover High School play football and baseball before Legion Stadium?

Bellamy Park

Public school girls prepare to dance around a May Pole in Bellamy Park, located on South 17th Street between Dawson and Wooster streets in Wilmington. (Undated photo from the Louis T. Moore Collection at the New Hanover County Public Library)

This question took some serious digging. As it turns out, records for high school football and baseball games in the 1920s and 1930s are pretty sketchy. Legion Stadium was built in the 1930s, but the North Carolina State Athletic Association has records of sanctioned interscholastic events back into the 1910s and 1920s.

From at least the late ?20s until the mid-30s, New Hanover played football and baseball at Bellamy Park, the former home of the Wilmington Pirates. Bellamy Park was along 17th street between Dawson and Wooster streets ? near the current location of the StarNews office at 1003 S. 17th St., Wilmington [Map this]. Prior to the late 1920s, things become more murky as records are hard to come by. There is at least some evidence that the New Hanover High School Wildcats played baseball at Robert Strange Park along Eighth Street between Ann and Castle streets. It?s the current site of the Fit for Fun Center and several softball fields. Again, records are pretty tough to find for this period as the Morning Star?s 10-inch sports column was filled mainly with Major League Baseball standings and box scores.

By that mid-1930s, the Wilmington Morning Star had an extensive sports section and was moving toward more local content. In 1935, excitement was high after the New Hanover Wildcats opened the season with a resounding victory against Whiteville, but local sportswriters said the Wildcats needed to improve their blocking.

User-contributed question by:
Carey Sasser


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South Korean president urges stability in NKorea (AP)

SEOUL, South Korea ? South Korean President Lee Myung-bak is urging stability in North Korea and says his country's front-line troops remain on alert.

South Korea put its troops on high alert Monday after the death of Kim Jong Il. The presidential Blue House says Lee made the comments Thursday in a meeting with lawmakers.

All signs out of North Korea suggest the transition of power to Kim Jong Il's son is going smoothly. U.S. and South Korean officials are seeing no unusual troop movements and no buildup around the heavily fortified border.

Pentagon press secretary George Little said that as of Wednesday the U.S. military has not seen any unusual military movements by the North Koreans.


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Monday, December 19, 2011

Sniping pits old foes, new allies: France, Britain (AP)

PARIS ? France and Britain escalated an unusual bout of sniping Friday, as Prime Minister David Cameron took a swipe at religious freedoms in France while the French finance minister criticized the U.K. economy.

The latest cross-Channel squabbling ? triggered in part over a tense European Union summit last week ? bared efforts to win political points at home at a time when the financial crisis has pinched both governments.

The rabble-rousing also comes despite the lockstep military effort between the two countries in the NATO-led air campaign that helped spell the end of Moammar Gadhafi's longtime reign in Libya.

France and Britain, rivals for centuries, have been strong ? if at times uncomfortable ? allies since the 20th century. As western Europe's top military powers, they cooperate closely on defense and were joint pillars of the NATO-led air campaign that helped spell the end of Moammar Gadhafi's reign in Libya.

Friday's war of words got going as French Finance Minister Francois Baroin sought to deflect investor fears across the Channel to Britain, hours after the national statistics agency predicted France will slide into recession.

"We would prefer to be French right now than British, in terms of the economy," Baroin told Europe-1 radio.

Echoing comments from several top French officials this week, Baroin suggested ratings agencies should be paying more attention to Britain: "The economic situation of Britain is worrying today."

With French presidential and legislative elections on tap next spring, President Nicolas Sarkozy's conservatives have been on the defensive in recent weeks amid rumblings that France ? the eurozone's No. 2 economy after Germany ? may soon face a credit-rating downgrade.

Late Friday, Fitch ratings agency said it was keeping France's credit grade at Triple-A, but was revising its outlook on French sovereign debt to negative, from stable.

In Brussels last week, Cameron was the only European Union leader out of 27 to refuse to consider a new treaty that would impose tougher controls on state budgets to avert wider financial crisis. His decision left him isolated.

But in Britain, Cameron has been praised by many for his decision to hardball his European allies over their fiscal pact ? and some opinion polls show his governing Conservative Party winning a clear boost from the tough stance.

In a speech on religion in Oxford, Cameron appeared to take a swipe at France, switching focus from the economy to tolerance for minorities in the two countries. "Many people tell me it is much easier to be Jewish or Muslim here in Britain than it is in a secular country like France," Cameron said.

Britain's deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, leader of the pro-European Liberal Democrats who opposed Cameron's move to snub the European pact, urged French Prime Minister Francois Fillon to end the sniping from Paris.

During a trip to Brazil on Thursday, Fillon ? whose wife Penelope is Welsh ? acknowledged to reporters that France's debt was too high, before pointing to "our British friends who are even more indebted than we are."

"For the moment, the ratings agencies don't seem to notice," he said.

Clegg's office said Fillon had called him from Brazil to say that "it had not been his intention to call into question" Britain's credit rating.

Meanwhile, Clegg told Fillon that the recent remarks by some French officials about the British economy were "simply unacceptable and that steps should be taken to calm the rhetoric," the statement said.

Late Thursday, French statistics agency Insee forecast that the country's economy would shrink this quarter and next amid a worsening outlook for the whole 17-nation eurozone. Insee predicted the economy would contract 0.2 percent in the fourth quarter and 0.1 percent in the first quarter of 2012, and forecast renewed but weak growth in the second quarter.


David Stringer in London contributed to this report.


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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Elusive Higgs boson particle running out of hiding places

Today's announcement was highly anticipated by both the physics community and the public, with speculation running rampant in the days leading up to it that the elusive particle may have finally been found.

This story was updated at 9:55 a.m. EST.

Skip to next paragraph

Physicists are closer than ever to hunting down the elusive Higgs boson particle, the missing piece of the governing theory of the universe's tiniest building blocks.

Scientists at the world's largest particle accelerator, the?Large Hadron Collider?at the European Organization for Nuclear Research?(CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland, announced today (Dec. 13) that they'd narrowed down the list of possible hiding spots for the Higgs, (sometimes called the God particle) and even see some indications that they're hot on its trail.

"I think we are getting very close," said Vivek Sharma, a physicist at the University of California, San Diego, and the leader of the Higgs search at LHC's CMS experiment. "We may be getting the first tantalizing hints, but it's a whiff, it's a smell, it's not quite the whole thing."

Today's announcement was highly anticipated by both the physics community and the public, with?speculation running rampant?in the days leading up to it that the elusive particle may have finally been found. Though the news is not the final answer some were hoping for, the progress is a significant, exciting step, physicists say. [Top 5 Implications of Finding the Higgs Boson]

"It's something really extraordinary and I think we can be all proud of this," said CERN physicist Fabiola Gianotti, spokesperson for the LHC's ATLAS experiment, during a public seminar announcing the results today.

Experts outside the LHC collaborations agreed.

"These are really tough experiments, and it's just really impressive what they're doing," Harvard University theoretical physicist Lisa Randall told LiveScience.

Origin of mass

The?Higgs boson?is thought to be tied to a field (the Higgs field) that is responsible for giving all other particles their mass. Ironically, physicists don't have a specific prediction for the mass of?the Higgs boson?itself, so they must search a wide range of possible masses for signs of the particle.

Based on data collected at LHC's CMS and ATLAS experiments, researchers said they are now able to narrow down the Higgs' mass to a small range, and exclude a wide swath of possibilities.

"With the data from this year we've ruled out a lot of masses, and now we're just left with this tiny window, in this region that is probably the most interesting," said Jonas Strandberg, a researcher at CERN working on the ATLAS experiment.

The researchers have now cornered the Higgs mass in the range between 115 and 130 gigaelectronvolts (GeV).For comparison, a proton weighs 1 GeV. Outside that range, the scientists are more than 95 percent confident that the Higgs cannot exist.

Within that range, the ATLAS findings show some indications of a possible signal from the Higgs boson around 125 GeV, though the data are not strong enough for scientists to make a claim with the level of confidence they require for a true?discovery.

The CMS experiment also showed preliminary indications of a signal around that spot.

"The excess is most compatible with a Standard Model Higgs in the vicinity of 124 GeV and below, but the statistical significance is not large enough to say anything conclusive," CMS experiment spokesperson Guido Tonelli said in a statement. "As of today what we see is consistent either with a background fluctuation or with the presence of the boson. Refined analyses and additional data delivered in 2012 by this magnificent machine will definitely give an answer."

Proceed with caution

Ultimately, scientists said they were excited by the LHC's findings so far, but that it's too soon to celebrate.

"Please be prudent," said CERN director general Rolf-Dieter Heuer. "We have not found it yet, we have not excluded it yet. Stay tuned."

The fact that the independent studies conducted by ATLAS and CMS appear to be pointing in the same direction is particularly promising, experts said.

"Based on the predicted size of the signal, the experiments may have their first glimpse of a positive signal," University of Chicago physicist Jim Pilcher wrote in an email to LiveScience. "It is especially important to compare the results of two independent experiments to help reduce statistical fluctuations and experimental biases."

But it shouldn't be much longer before scientists can be sure?if the Higgs exists, and if so, how much mass it has.

"We know we must be getting close," Strandberg told LiveScience. "All we need is a little bit more data. I think the data we take in 2012 should be able to really give a definitive answer if the Higgs boson exists."

Underground explosions

The Large Hadron Collider is a 17-mile (27-kilometer) loop buried underneath France and Switzerland, run by CERN, based in Geneva.

Inside this loop, protons traveling near the speed of light collide head-on, and release huge amounts of energy in powerful explosions.

This energy then coalesces into new particles, some of which are exotic, hard-to-find species like the Higgs. The Higgs quickly decays into other particle products, which are then sensed by the detectors inside ATLAS and CMS. [6 Exotic Particles Explained]

The new results are based on data accumulated over 500 trillion proton-proton collisions inside the LHC.

Big payoff

The Higgs boson and its related Higgs field were predicted in 1964 by physicist Peter Higgs and his colleagues. Though the Higgs mechanism is the best explanation for why particles have mass, it can't be trusted until its major prediction ? the Higgs boson ? is found. [Infographic: The Higgs Boson]

"It would be a major discovery, absolutely," said Randall, who is the author of a recent book covering the Higgs and other particle mysteries called "Knocking on Heaven's Door: How Physics and Scientific Thinking Illuminate the Universe and the Modern World" (Ecco, 2011). "We've known about the Higgs mechanism for years, but we don't know if it's right."

The discovery of the Higgs would offer final credence to the idea and its originators.

"If it is found there are several people who are going to get a?Nobel prize," said Vivek Sharma, a physicist at the University of California, San Diego, and the leader of the Higgs search at LHC's CMS experiment.

You can follow LiveScience senior writer Clara Moskowitz on Twitter @ClaraMoskowitz. Follow LiveScience for the latest in science news and discoveries on Twitter?@livescience?and on?Facebook.


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Courting conservatives, Newt Gingrich again says he would crack down on judges (Star Tribune)

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