Insurance company to 9-month-old boy: Too expensive to keep you alive
2017-10-18 20:55:06 UTC
A 9-month-old boy with an aggressive brain tumor received a letter from his family’s insurance company explaining that treating the cancer would be too expensive and therefore “not medically necessary.”
‘Dear Connor Richardson,” the letter said, according to The Daily Beast, “As HIP Health Plan of New York, we try hard to provide you with access to quality health care services that meet your needs. When we decide to deny coverage for treatment or service, we want to make sure you know why.”
Connor’s father — retired NYPD officer Wayne Richardson — told The Daily Beast’s Michael Daly that at 7 months old, his son had a frightening cry...
Mugabe’s wife sued a man for not delivering a $1.35 million wedding anniversary ring
2017-10-18 16:52:27 UTC
HARARE (Reuters) - Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s wife Grace has sued a Belgium-based businessman for failing to deliver a $1.35 million ring she ordered for a wedding anniversary, state media reported on Wednesday.
Grace, 52, an influential figure in Mugabe’s ruling ZANU-PF party and seen as a potential successor to her husband, is nicknamed “Gucci Grace” for her reputed dedication to shopping.
But she and her 93-year-old husband have kept their assets under wraps despite frequent local private media reports on Grace buying properties in Zimbabwe and South Africa.
The Herald, a government-controlled newspaper, reported that...
Scientists Detect Light From Gravitational Wave
2017-10-16 19:27:03 UTC
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (Reuters) - When neutron stars collide: Scientists in Europe and the U.S. have for the first time detected gravitational waves, the ripples in space and time predicted by Albert Einstein, at the same time as light from the same cosmic event, according to research published on Monday.
The waves, caused by the collision of two neutron stars some 130 million years ago, were first detected in August by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatories, known as LIGO, in Washington state and Louisiana as well as at a third detector, named Virgo, in Italy.
<blockquote>Two seconds later, observatories across earth a...
Thousands Flee California Fires, Death Toll Rise to 41
2017-10-16 19:20:16 UTC
SANTA ROSA, Calif. (Reuters) - Firefighters began gaining ground on wildfires that killed at least 41 people in the past week, the deadliest blazes in California’s history, as winds eased and searchers combed charred ruins for more victims with hundreds still missing.
The most destructive Northern California fires were more than half contained by Monday, and tens of thousands of residents who had fled the flames in hard-hit Sonoma County were allowed to return to their homes north of San Francisco.
More than 5,700 structures were destroyed by more than a dozen wildfires that ignited a week ago and consumed an area larger than New Yor...
Columbus Day Celebrates the Explorer's Crimes Against Humanity
2017-10-09 20:25:51 UTC
Every October, grateful Americans get a day off work to, ostensively, celebrate the life of explorer Christopher Columbus. The current President of the United States Donald Trump said in his proclamation:
"The permanent arrival of Europeans to the Americas was a transformative event that undeniably and fundamentally changed the course of human history and set the stage for the development of our great Nation. Therefore, on Columbus Day, we honor the skilled navigator and man of faith."
<blockquote><h2>Who is Christopher Columbus?</h2>Christopher Columbus was an Italian explorer who set sail for America on 12 October, 1492. Th...
Trump's Nationalistic America Sees Anti-Fascist Movement Rising
2017-10-07 07:30:08 UTC
On the day that Donald Trump was inaugurated as the US president in January, the white supremacist Richard Spencer was giving an interview to a television reporter on the streets of Washington, DC. He was midsentence when a black-clad figure rushed up and punched him in the face.
Spencer fell from the camera's frame. The attacker — hooded and with a scarf pulled over his face — made a safe retreat. This incident on Trump's first day in office was a sign of things to come.
<blockquote><img alt="White_man" src="/system/images/20020/original/White_man.jpg?1479172969" />
Racist, fascist and other far-right groups in the United States ...
McCain Does Not Support New GOP Obamacare Repeal
2017-09-22 18:56:09 UTC
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Senator John McCain said on Friday that he would vote against a new Republican bill to dismantle Obamacare if it is brought onto the Senate floor next week, in a new setback for the proposal.
“I cannot in good conscience vote for the Graham-Cassidy proposal,” McCain said in a statement about the bill sponsored by Senators Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy. McCain said he could not support the bill not knowing how much it would cost and how it would affect insurance coverage, adding that he believed both parties could do better if they work together on legislation.
Reporting by Susan Cornwell; Editing by Mary...
California protects immigrants and resists Trump by becoming a 'Sanctuary State'
2017-09-16 18:43:59 UTC
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) - California lawmakers voted to become a sanctuary state, tussled over hot-button environmental issues and urged other states to refuse to cooperate with President Donald Trump’s Election Integrity Commission as their legislative year ended early on Saturday.
The majority Democratic lawmakers headed back to their districts having positioned the state in opposition to conservative policies proposed by the Republican-dominated U.S. Congress and President Donald Trump on immigration, the environment and other issues.
“It’s a purposeful positioning,” said political analyst Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, a senior fello...
Bluetooth bugs bedevil billions of android devices
2017-09-13 17:45:53 UTC
More than 5.3 billion devices with Bluetooth signals are at risk of a malware attack newly identified by an internet of things security company.
If you're not keeping count, that's most of the estimated 8.2 billion devices that use Bluetooth, which allows for our gadgets to connect and communicate wirelessly. Nearly every connected device out there has Bluetooth capability. Your phones, laptops, speakers, car entertainment systems -- the list goes on and on to even the most mundane gadgets.
Because those devices can connect to others effortlessly, Bluetooth has left an open attack point for hackers, according to researchers at Armis ...
Nation Weather Service Takes Active Role in Preparing for Disasters
2017-09-13 14:26:49 UTC
COLLEGE PARK, Md.—“I woke up Friday night with a dream that it had missed the peninsula,” said Bill Lapenta, the director of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction.
We sat looking at a screen that showed Hurricane Irma’s long journey across the Atlantic Ocean. Another monitor showed a live satellite feed of the cyclone, the hurricane a splotch of rainbow data, its eye coming closer and closer to the Florida mainland. Across the room, Jim Cantore shouted through the television that Irma was about to make landfall.
Senator McCain: 'Every life has to end one way or another'
2017-09-11 16:41:17 UTC
Sen. John McCain opened up about his battle with brain cancer on Sunday, adding it to the list of other near-fatal encounters he's faced.
“I’m facing a challenge," the Arizona Republican said on CNN's "State of the Union." "But I’ve faced other challenges, and I’m very confident about getting through this one as well.”
href="http://www.politico.com/story/2017/09/10/john-mccain-brain-cancer-242535">BY IAN KULLGREN of Politico</strong></a><hr>
In his first nationally televised interview since his diagnosis in July, McCain discussed with CNN's Jake Tapper some of the details of his battle against glioblastoma, an ag...
This Weather is Not Normal
2017-09-07 17:23:06 UTC
The days leading up to Hurricane Harvey’s landfall in Texas last week were some of the most nerve-wracking in meteorological history. Forecasters watched helplessly as a true monster storm—one that would eventually become the most extreme rain event in recorded American history—moved toward Houston, the country’s fourth-largest city. They gave the most dire warnings they could, developing new colors for maps to show unprecedented intensity, and using more hyperbolic language than ever before. But there was no avoiding the mass devastation. Homes were destroyed. At least 60 people died. The flooding has not even fully receded, and now forec...
Pope Francis Consulted Psychoanalyst in the 1970's
2017-09-01 16:34:23 UTC
PARIS (Reuters) - Pope Francis saw a Jewish psychoanalyst once a week for six months during the 1970s and found the experience beneficial, the pontiff was quoted as saying in a new book.
“For six months, I went to her once a week to shed light on certain things,” the Argentine pontiff said in a series of interviews with French sociologist Dominique Wolton, extracts from which were published by Le Figaro on Friday.
“She was very good, very professional ... but she always remained in her proper place,” the 80-year-old said, adding he was aged 42 at the time. “She helped me a lot.”
The excerpts released did not name the psychoanalyst...
Mayor of storm-ravaged Houston announces nighttime curfew
2017-08-30 06:05:01 UTC
HOUSTON (Reuters) - The storm turning slowly in the Gulf of Mexico has brought catastrophic flooding to Texas, killing at least 13 people and paralyzing Houston, America's fourth most populous city.
With damage expected to run well into the tens of billions of dollars, it will rank among the costliest U.S. natural disasters.
City officials readied temporary housing for about 19,000 people, with thousands more expected to flee as flooding entered its fourth day and space ran out in cramped shelters.
By Tuesday morning, nearly 50,000 homes had suffered flood damage, Texas officials said, and the tally will climb.
Houston Mayor S...
Merkel stands by decision to open Germany's borders to refugees
2017-08-27 19:50:20 UTC
BERLIN (Reuters) - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she has no regrets about her 2015 decision to open the country’s borders to hundreds of thousands of refugees and added she will not be deterred from campaigning by angry hecklers.
In an interview with the Welt am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday, Merkel denied she had made any mistakes with her open-door policy even though the arrival of a million refugees over the last two years from Syria and Iraq opened deep rifts in her conservative party and depressed its support.
Four weeks before the Sept. 24 election, an Emnid opinion poll on Sunday showed Merkel’s conservatives would win 38...
Houston flooded as Texas battles 'unprecedented' weather
2017-08-27 19:18:10 UTC
HOUSTON, Texas (Reuters) - Emergency crews raced to pull people from cars and homes as flood waters rose across southeast Texas on Sunday, rescuing more than 1,000 people around Houston as Tropical Storm Harvey pounded the region.
Harvey came ashore late Friday as the most powerful hurricane to hit Texas in more than 50 years and has killed at least two people. The death toll is expected to rise as the storm lashes the U.S. state for days, triggering more floods, tidal surges and tornadoes.
Harvey has caused chest-deep flooding on some streets in Houston as rivers and channels overflow their banks. After up to 30 inches (76 cms) of r...
Ukraine's Tuberculosis Problem Concerns Europe
2017-08-25 18:43:12 UTC
ODESSA, Ukraine — In the Ukrainian tourist destination of Odessa, a port on the Black Sea, holidaymakers mingle with internally displaced people from the country’s war-torn east, local Roma, students, and economic migrants from Central Asia and the Caucasus, Africa and Asia.
Yet the air carries something less healthy than sea breezes: tuberculosis.
Odessa has the highest rate of TB in Ukraine, with 110 cases per 100,000 people in 2016, and rising fast. Closely linked with migration, instability and poverty, controlling this airborne disease takes on additional urgency this year as Ukraine seeks to integrate into Europe thanks to a ne...
Whole Foods' Competitors Fear Amazon Price Cuts
2017-08-25 06:36:18 UTC
(Reuters) - Amazon said it will cut prices on a range of popular goods as it completes its acquisition of Whole Foods Market, sending shares of rival grocers tumbling on fears that brutal market share battles will intensify.
Amazon’s $13.7 billion purchase of Whole Foods, which will be completed on Monday, has been hanging over a brick-and-mortar retail sector unsure of how to respond to the world’s biggest online retailer.
Shares of Kroger Co, the biggest U.S. supermarket operator, closed down 8 percent, while Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the biggest U.S. food seller, closed down 2 percent.
Amazon also said it will start selling Whole Fo...
Debate over Trump's Mental Health Takes Off
2017-08-24 19:15:37 UTC
When Republican Sen. Bob Corker said last week that President Trump hasn't "been able to demonstrate the stability" needed for success and recommended he "move way beyond himself," it was news mostly because Corker has been one of Trump's key supporters in Congress.
Then James Clapper, who served in top intelligence jobs under former Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Wednesday morning questioned Trump's "fitness to be in this office" and said he was worried about the president's access to the nuclear codes. Clapper, who had a long military career, is a close friend and longtime colleague of Trump's Defense Secretary, Jim Mat...
Aretha Franklin announced to return to her hometown of Detroit
2017-08-19 21:21:55 UTC
Aretha Franklin, who has reigned as the Queen of Soul for some 50 years, has announced plans to return to her hometown of Detroit and open a nightclub.
The chart-toping Motown legend will not have to travel far: she currently lives in a suburb near the Motor City that gave birth to her musical career in the 1960s.
The 75-year-old told the Detroit Free Press newspaper she wanted to open a nightclub in downtown Detroit during her retirement where she would occasionally perform.
"From time to time I would sing," said the voice behind such iconic hits as the feminist-tinged "Respect" and "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman."
Boston: Non-Violent March to Condemn White Nationalism
2017-08-19 21:53:07 UTC
BOSTON (Reuters) - Thousands of people in Boston protested a "Free Speech" rally featuring right-wing speakers on Saturday, with hundreds of police mobilized to prevent a recurrence of violence that left a woman dead at a Virginia white-supremacist protest last week.
In historic Boston Common park alone, hundreds of protesters who believe the event could become a platform for racist propaganda dwarfed the few dozen rally participants.
<blockquote><img alt="Boston-_non-violent_march_to_condemn_white_nationalism" src="/system/images/21146/original/Boston-_Non-Violent_March_to_Condemn_White_Nationalism.jpg?1503178513" /><strong><i>
Roman Polanski remained a fugitive from justice
2017-08-19 06:16:51 UTC
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A Los Angeles judge on Friday rejected a request by the woman who was raped by director Roman Polanski 40 years ago to have the criminal case against him dismissed.
Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon ruled that Polanski remained a fugitive from justice and that the court could not dismiss a case "merely because it would be in the victim's best interest."
The ruling follows the first appearance in June in the case by Samantha Geimer, who was 13 years old when Polanski sexually assaulted her in Los Angeles in 1977.
The director, who admitted raping Geimer, spent 42 days in pre-trial custody. He then fled the U...
World leader called Trump's words "monstrosities"
2017-08-17 02:54:36 UTC
International leaders criticized US President Trump after he said multiple parties were to blame for violence at neo-Nazi marches in the US. In Germany, a leading politician called the president's words "monstrosities."
At home and abroad, US President Donald Trump has been condemned for blaming "both sides" for the deadly violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, and for saying some "fine people" took part in a rally where violence left one person dead over the weekend.
In Germany, politicians expressed their shock at seeing people carrying flags with swastikas and chanting anti-Semitic slurs.
"We should not tolerate the monstrositi...
Premiums would rise 20% if Trump stops federal pay for health care
2017-08-15 19:45:50 UTC
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Premiums for many would rise 20 percent in 2018 if Trump stops federal payments to health insurers, a nonpartisan congressional office said on Tuesday.
The Congressional Budget Office also found that terminating the payments would mean that 5 percent of Americans would live in areas that do not have an insurer in the individual market in 2018. However, the agency estimated that more insurers would participate by 2020 because they will have observed how the markets work without the payments and most people would be able to purchase insurance.
The CBO's assessment echoes concerns raised by insurers over the past ...
Victim of Neo-Nazi White Nationalists Wept for Social Justice
2017-08-14 07:13:23 UTC
(Reuters) - Heather Heyer came to downtown Charlottesville with her friends to make a stand against white nationalists who converged on the Virginia college town to demand the city keep a statue honoring a Confederate war hero, her boss said on Sunday.
The 32-year-old paralegal wanted to send a clear message to the neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan sympathizers who planned to stage one of the largest far-right rallies in recent U.S. history that people abhor their views in the city where she was born, he said.
But her decision to join counter-protesters on Saturday resulted in tragedy when James Alex Fields Jr., a 20-year-old Neo-Nazi from ...