January 26, 2013 |
DIABALY, Mali - The militants came with gifts of dates, milk, peanuts, cookies and plastic prayer beads, extolling Islam and promising townspeople they wouldn't hurt them. They took over houses, unloaded truckloads of ammunition, food and water and ordered families not to run away. They took down the national flag from the school and replaced it with a black Islamic flag. They blasted the concrete cross off a church. They wore turbans covering their faces like masks, but spoke gently, promising to pay for any damage they caused.
January 25, 2013 |
The jihadists stoning women to death in Mali and taking hostages in Algeria are harbingers of much worse to come. Osama bin Laden may be dead, but Al Qaeda in Africa now threatens an area twice the size of Germany. Mali is just one country in the Sahel, a million square miles of arid and semi-arid countryside stretching from the Atlantic to the Red Sea. The region has always been subject to episodes of starvation and brutal tribal conflicts, and things are now deteriorating further.
January 17, 2013 |
If we truly are what we eat, then please, please, don't let me be the Cheesecake Factory's bistro shrimp pasta dish. Nor, for that matter, IHOP's country-fried steak and eggs combo, Johnny Rockets' bacon cheddar double burger, Uno Chicago Grill's deep-dish macaroni and three-cheese dish, Smoothie King's Peanut Power Plus Grape Smoothie or Maggiano's Little Italy's chocolate zuccotto cake. Why? Well, start with this: The Cheesecake Factory dish, which you wouldn't think would be too unhealthful -- crispy battered shrimp, mushrooms, tomato, arugula and basil-garlic-lemon cream sauce -- comes in at a whopping 3,120 calories and 89 grams of saturated fat. Wanna wash it down with that Smoothie King smoothie?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 8, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - A combative Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday declared that "the prison crisis is over in California" and demanded an end to years of intervention by federal judges and expensive edicts designed to reduce crowding and improve inmate healthcare. "At some point, the job's done," Brown said at a Capitol news conference before catching a plane for Los Angeles, where he repeated the message. "We spent billions of dollars" complying with the court orders, the governor said. "It is now time to return control of our prison system to California.
December 22, 2012 |
Fly over northeastern Minnesota with "Sky Dan" and you'd see a moose. One time, he spotted 15 of them during an hour flight. The pilot was so confident, he even offered those on his aerial tours a money-back guarantee. "If you didn't see a moose, you didn't pay," Dan Anderson, 49, said. No longer. Anderson stopped providing refunds to customers in 2008. He was handing back too much money. PHOTOS: Rescued animals -- Boots, Feisty and more The state's iconic moose population has been mysteriously declining for years, a drop-off that pushed the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources this month to propose labeling moose a species of "special concern.
December 21, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - The pace of the nation's population growth inched higher this year for the first time since 2006, boosted by a larger number of immigrants amid improving U.S. prospects. In its annual state population estimates, the Census Bureau said Thursday that there were 313.9 million people in the United States on July 1. That is up 2.3 million from a year earlier, a growth rate of 0.75%. Although that pace is still very slow by historical standards, it nonetheless marks a tiny increase after several years of declines, in which the growth rate had fallen to a level not seen since the 1930s.
December 19, 2012
For too long in the Philippine Congress, the priorities of the Roman Catholic Church took precedence over what most Filipinos wanted - and needed. Finally, after 14 years of debate and delay, lawmakers passed a bill that will provide free or subsidized birth control to poor people as well as require sex education in schools and mandate training in family planning for community health workers. Even though 80% of the nation's population is Catholic, birth control has long been available to those who want it - as long as they could pay. Contraception has been out of reach for most of the poor, though.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 14, 2012 |
California's population has grown to 37.8 million, continuing the state's trend of slowing but steady growth - about 1% annually - over the last decade, according to new population estimates released by the state Department of Finance. The population increased by 256,000 people since July 2011, a growth rate of 0.7%. It's roughly the same growth rate as last year, but some experts pointed to an uptick in the number of people moving in and out of California and between counties as a sign of economic recovery.
December 10, 2012 |
There is good and bad news for women. They still face various forms of discrimination including earning less than their male counterparts, but they will have some measure of revenge by having a better chance to live longer, according to the Census Bureau. In a report released Monday, the Census Bureau notes that for every 100 women who live to be at least 100 years old, there are just 20.7 men who have reached the same goal. The figures are based on the 2010 Census that counted 53,364 people ages 100 and older in the United States.
December 4, 2012 |
After three years of analysis, a team of federal scientists has come up with a list of the greatest threats to the survival of reef-building corals. And it has ranked the proximate threats, weighing into decades of scientific debate over the biggest culprit that's devastating coral reefs around the world. The ranking comes with a proviso, one that raises a topic that most coral reef biologists avoid out of fear of a backlash. “The ultimate factor for each of these proximate threats, excepting natural physical damage and changes in isolation, is growth in human population and consumption of natural resources,” reads the intro to the chart above.