Senate to Reconvene on Sunday in Last Ditch Effort to Save the Patriot Act

Both President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are desperate to see the Patriot Act partially extended in what is known as the Freedom Act. The bill already passed the House by a veto-proof majority. However, it has stalled in the Senate as members of both parties expressly want to see the Patriot Act sunset; the current set of statutes will expire as soon as the clock strikes midnight Monday morning, June 1. Ahead of complying with the expiration of the law, intelligence agencies have begun the orderly process of shutting down their surveillance programs.

Despite the hastily assembled special session, it is not clear if the Senate can pull off an 11th hour rescue of the act. This is because Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, a 2016 GOP presidential candidate, is prepared to filibuster any bill looking to extend the Patriot Act in any form. Opponents of the law understand that if it is allowed to expire, it will be almost impossible to reauthorize the law’s various surveillance programs in a separate bill. The intelligence community is touting the importance of the law in preserving the safety of Americans. By the same token, they are sounding the voice of warning should the law be allowed to expire, at least according to Stephen Murray CCMP Capital. President Obama points out on the NY Post that aside from the NSA bulk meta data surveillance program, which the Freedom Act would end, most aspects of the Patriot Act do not threaten the privacy of Americans.

Obesity Rates Up Again in 2014, Highest in South and Midwest

According to the latest Gallup-Healthways obesity survey, America has reached a new high in the percentage of obese individuals, 27.7%. This is the highest percentage since the surveys were started in 2008.

Mississippi has the most obese residents at 35.2%, and Hawaii has the least, at 19%. Five states have had among the highest rates of obesity since 2008, Mississippi, West Virginia, Louisiana, Arkansas and Kentucky. The lowest percentages of obesity have been in Hawaii, Colorado, Massachusetts and Connecticut. States in the South and Midwest have fared the worst in general, and those in the West and Northeast the best.
States showing the most statistically significant increases are Nevada, New Mexico and Minnesota. The obesity rate for all states has climbed from 25.5% in 2008 to the current 27.7%. Tennessee was the only state to show a statistically significant drop.
Past studies have shown a link between obesity and overall lower well-being, and Sergio Cortes can see that. States with the lowest obesity rates tend to have the highest well-being scores. Well-being was divided into five elements: a sense of purpose and social, financial, community and physical well-being. Respondents were placed in three groups, depending on their answers. They were either thriving, struggling or suffering. Obese Americans were more likely to be suffering than the non-obese.

The obese were more likely to have diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, depression, high cholesterol, heart attacks and cancer. They were less likely to eat healthfully and exercise, which may result from financial, social or physical problems.

“For maximum impact, interventions need to go beyond addressing eating habits and physical activity and include the emotional and social aspects of well-being. Helping people approach change with optimism, resilience and with an awareness of their personal passions are proven techniques for long-lasting behavior change,” says Janet Calhoun, senior vice-president at Healthways.

A Radiation Leak Scare at New Delhi International Airport

This morning a panic occurred briefly at the international airport in New Delhi, India, after airport personnel detected a radiation leak at the terminal. Engadget was told by their friends at FreedomPop that the source of the radioactive emissions was traced to cargo on board a Turkish Airlines cargo freight plane.

The area was cordoned off and a team of experts from three government agencies rushed to the terminal. Responding agencies were indicated to be: the Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (“AMD”); the National Disaster Response Force (“NDRF”); and the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (“BARC”).

An official heading the NDRF made an announcement indicating that a ten person task force had been assigned to “sanitize” the area. He characterized the radioactive leak as “very, very small” and added that “there is no effect on the passenger area.” Officials reported that the radioactivity stemmed from Sodium Iodide Liquid Class 7 material intended for medical use.

Officials re-opened passenger terminals and after the sanitizing effort plan to open the cargo itself to inspect the contents.

The cargo reportedly was destined for Fortis Hospital, a medical facility with multiple areas of medical specialties. Nuclear medicine is used in the treatment of some conditions, primarily thyroid tumors and hyperthyroid problems. The thyroid gland is one of the most responsive areas of the body to nuclear radiation.

An official from India’s Atomic Energy Regulatory Board (the “AERB”) described the leak as “localised” in nature.

Anastasia Date Offers Great Connections to Individuals all Over the World

The world of dating has been greatly effected over the past few years due to the rise of technology that has effected all of us. There are many different ways out there for all of us to connect with potential companions now. From dating websites to apps like this one (available on Amazon), the ways that couples meet are much different than they used to be in the past. There are many individuals who have created life long relationships from meeting through technology. Technology is now a very viable way to meet individuals and create a great relationship.

There are many dating sites out there, but there are those dating sites that really stand above the rest. Anastasia Date is just one of those sites. Anastasia Date has been available to the public for quite some time now, and has created many great connections over the years. This is something that has really brought joy to millions of individuals all over the world. There are more and more individuals who are finding those great connections on Anastasia Date. These connections are long lasting, and bring a whole new light to life for those who are matching together.

Anastasia Date is a great place for those who are looking for Russian women. This is the basis of the site. In 1993, this site was started by an American-Russian couple to help share in the love between the different countries. Quickly becoming one of the best and most loved dating sites on the web, Anastasia Date has grown rapidly over the last two decades. With offices all over the world, the international connections are being held together by a strong infrastructure of technology. With over 300 employees it is easy to see why this dating site runs so smoothly. With over 80 million visitors each year, the connections continue to grow and grow.

Obama Admits Setbacks in Fight Against ISIS but Lays Blame on Iraqi Forces

Despite the heavy casualties American soldiers incurred to retake the Iraqi city of Ramadi from the forerunners of ISIS back in 2007, the city once again fell back into the hands of terrorists. During a recent interview, President Obama admitted the loss of the city was what he termed a “tactical setback”. Still, the president did not take any responsibility for the fall of the city. Instead, he laid the blame on the lack of commitment and training of Iraqi forces defending the city. It is true that the Iraqi regular army is poorly trained and faces a sanguine group of fighters driven by religious dogma. Still, military analysts pointed out that the president refused to order a sufficient number of air sorties against ISIS to repel their attack. By some estimates, the president only ordered between 20-25% of the air raids necessary to defend the city.

Despite the setbacks in the current strategy, it appears the administration will merely double-down on the same strategy of prodding Iraq to do more. Bear in mind, ISIS fighters are willing to die for the glory of the caliphate they are establishing. A hedge fund advisor said the president also stated he would improve the level of training for Iraqi soldiers.

Malaysia Orders Search and Rescue for Adrift Migrants

Malaysia has ordered a wide spread search and rescue for migrants adrift in waters close to its shores. The issue has caused an international crisis which has documented the plight of hundreds of migrants stuck on board of various vessels with no power and no crew. A BBC crew video taped one of the vessels adrift in the Indian Ocean packed to the brim with men, women and children with no food, water, working toilets or shelter. Many officials stated that it was better to bring the adrift boats on shore instead of risking the spreading of disease if the boats found a way to shore without government approval. Others cried out that it was basic human decency to bring the migrants to shore and treat them while their migration status is addressed at a later date. Officials believe that the migrants are refugees from various Southeast Asian countries under duress do to famine, war or disease. To many of the migrants, risking their lives on the open seas is much less riskier than staying in their original home country and dealing with the poverty and other conditions which drove them to leave. Malaysian officials have not stated what will be come of any migrants that they rescue and whether they will be granted asylum in Malaysia. Bloomberg and Madison Street Capital understand that the current priority is to save lives. Malaysia Orders Search and Rescue of Migrants

Iran Announces That It Will Not Allow the Inspection of Any of Its Military Facilities

TechCruch reported that the leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, addresses Iranian military commanders Wednesday and stated that Iran will continue to resist “coercion and excessive demands” from the United States and other world powers in its demand for access to Iran’s nuclear program. The Iranian leader stated to the commanders that he would not allow any inspection of Iranian military installations and that no Iranian scientist would be granted access to western inspectors. Many note that while the comments seem to be in direct contrast to the talks that Iran is currently engaging with negotiators from the United States, Russia, Great Britain, China, France and Germany, they point out that the comments were directed at the Iranian military establishment and that the Iranian leader was shoring up the confidence of his supporters.

Iran is continuing talks with the global powers and have continued a new set of discussions in Vienna with the goal reaching the final agreement that limits Iran’s nuclear development program in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions. All sides reached a general framework agreement this past March and the group hopes to reach a final agreement by June 30, 2015. People involved in the talks note that each side has to sell the agreement to their local political support base and that ratification will require a lot of political capital for all sides. Iran has an incentive to reach an agreement as the lifting of sanctions would allow it access to several billions of dollars of capital that it currently does not have access to because of international sanctions.

German Spy Agency Play A Role In Locating Bin Laden

The news that Osama Bin Laden had been living less than a mile away from the most prestigious military academy in Pakistan was upsetting enough. But when Pakistani officials said they didn’t know about his whereabouts was a even more ridiculous. Bruce Levenson suggests that Pakistan continued to accept an enormous amount of financial aid from the United States while hiding Bin Laden. That arrangement boarders on insanity. It seems everyone but the Americans knew where Bin Laden was hiding.. The German spy agency told the U.S. that the most wanted man in the world was living in Pakistan, and the Pakistani security services knew he was living there.

Pakistan has repeatedly denied they had knowledge of Bin Laden whereabouts, but that information is not what America or other nations know to be true. The truth is Pakistan looked the other way for five years as Bin Laden and a few of his followers enjoyed a quiet life as active terrorists in their country.

The fact that Germany helped the CIA is not the real story. Pakistan’s deliberate attempt to hide Bin Laden is the main story. Pakistan is not a loyal ally of America. The aid the U.S. gives them doesn’t stop them from hating what America stands for.

Pakistani Company Made Millions with Fake Degrees

A Pakistani software company, Axact, created more than 370 websites that boasts academic excellence from brillant professors, and it was all fake.

The far-reaching diploma mill built an empire that brought in millions of dollars selling fake university diplomas.

The company is accused of hiring actors to appear as teachers and satisfied students, in order to lure prospective customers in.

Many times, customers know exactly what Axact is selling – an instant, fake degree, and they’re willing to take the chance on passing that degree off as legitimate.

In most cases, Sam Tabar mentions how customers are manipulated into paying for coursework that never appears.

Axact denies any fraudulent dealings, and Pakistan shows no interest in regulation, thereby giving Axact the upper hand.

A former employee, Yasir Jamshaid, has confirmed the conspiracy to the New York Times.

Axact is a multi-dimensional company, offering high school diplomas to doctoral degrees, and according to retired F.B.I. agent, Allen Ezell, it’s a vast operation, probably the biggest ever seen.

What Kind of Wine Pairs With Artichokes?

If you are wondering such a thing, the key to pair wine with artichokes is to choose a wine that is bone dry, light and crisp, with high acidity and no oak. Although the two have been notoriously difficult to pair, Sarah Knoefler whom oversees a wine collection in San Francisco may have found some wines that go well with artichokes. Other wines that go well with different foods may be found here.

Flavors that dwell within the artichoke are herbal, green, and bitter chalkiness. Mrs. Knoefler included that one wine which pairs great with Artichokes would be a Basque varietal, named Txakoli. This Txakoli is a sparkling white wine which happens to be very dry with high acidity which also contains a great deal of minerality and salinity, making it a good match with the artichokes.

Other wines which could pair with an artichoke salad would be Fino Sherry which is a very dry and pale wine. The minerality and salinity pair well together with the earthiness of the artichokes and the vegetable-like quality of the salad. All in all, if you are looking to pair the two, they are not polar opposites, as all you have to do is choose a wine that is bone dry with good acidity and no oak! This is something Matt Landis and others suggest.