March 24, 2014 |
Talk about a "poverty trap"! The phrase was recently used by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul D. Ryan, R-Wisc., to suggest that the nation's panoply of programs to aid low-income households was keeping them from rising into the middle class. Wal-Mart's annual report , issued late last week, puts a different spin on things. Buried within the long list of risk factors disclosed to its shareholders--that is, factors "outside our control" that could materially affect financial performance--are these: " changes in the amount of payments made under the Supplement Nutrition Assistance Plan and other public assistance plans, (and)
March 22, 2014 |
In youth-obsessed Hollywood, the idea of aging, even if it's like fine wine, may seem hard to swallow. But there may be something to that analogy. Since the virtues of red wine have been extolled for years - the antioxidants are said to prevent heart disease - why not try to harness those powers in anti-aging skin care products? Many beauty brands have done just that, among them Caudalíe, a 19-year-old Parisian company that opened its first West Coast outpost, a boutique in Venice, this month.
March 17, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - Factories heated up last month, unexpectedly posting their biggest output gains since last summer and helping overall industrial production reverse a weather-related January decline, the Federal Reserve said Monday. Manufacturing output surged 0.8% in February, nearly wiping out a 0.9% drop the previous month that the Fed said resulted from extreme winter weather that hit much of the country. The jump was the largest since August and exceeded analyst expectations for a 0.3% increase.
March 17, 2014 |
The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission last week voted to prohibit Tesla from selling its electric vehicles directly to consumers, a decision endorsed by the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers and Gov. Chris Christie. New Jersey is the third state, after Texas and Arizona, to block Tesla from direct sales, all under the guise of protecting consumers. Some free market. Of course, auto dealers prefer an arrangement in which they have exclusive rights to sell a certain manufacturer's product.
March 14, 2014 |
When you shop for food, are you thinking of your devotion to the environment or to animal welfare? Do your primary concerns involve allergies or genetically modified (GMO) ingredients? Even as the federal government is working to simplify food labels, manufacturers and marketers are increasingly adding icons to appeal to shoppers' priorities. Those efforts were front and center at the mammoth Natural Products Expo West, held last week at the Anaheim Convention Center, where tens of thousands of convention-goers examined thousands of products, ranging from those invented in home kitchens to items produced by major companies.
March 14, 2014 |
Controversy of one kind or another has dogged "Porgy and Bess" since its Broadway premiere in 1935. Just the fact that George Gershwin's first real stab at grand opera debuted on Broadway rather than the Metropolitan Opera, which had initially commissioned the work, encapsulates two of the work's main fault lines: the debate over whether it's a musical or an opera or something in between, and the matter of its African American cast, which necessitated...
March 13, 2014 |
There's barely anything in the grocery store getting more grief from nutrition advocates these days than soda. But that hasn't stopped hearty entrepreneurs from showing off some new ones at the recent Natural Products Expo West, held at the Anaheim Convention Center. We tasted several delicious sodas, most of them lower in sugar -- and higher in price -- than mainstream bubblies. The flavors are generally a little more sophisticated, with lots of herbs and lighter tastes. “Soda isn't going away,” says Steve Hersh, who owns the New York company Gus (for Grown-Up Soda)
March 13, 2014 |
SACRAMENTO - Eager to attack more hazardous household products, state officials went public Thursday with a first list of consumer products that might need to be reformulated or pulled from retailers' shelves altogether. As part of its unfolding "green chemistry" program, the state Department of Toxic Substances Control identified three groups of goods as priority candidates for action. The first ones contain hazardous compounds with unfamiliar chemical names that could pose dangers to people or the environment, officials said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 2014
Abby Singer Production manager dies at 96 Abby Singer, 96, a famed production manager whose name became synonymous for the next-to-last shot of the day, died Thursday in Los Angeles, according to his daughter, Jo Anne Singer. He had cancer. The Harlem-born Abner E. Singer was a longtime production manager and assistant director who worked primarily in television from the 1950s through the '90s. He became famous for his efficient habit of preparing a crew for an impending move to the next scene by calling out the second-to-last shot.