South Carolina sheriff refuses to lower flag for Mandela
Mon, 09 Dec 2013 18:41:34 -0500
The U.S. flag flew high outside a sheriff's office in South Carolina on Monday in defiance of an order from President Barack Obama to lower all flags in memory of the late South African leader Nelson Mandela. Pickens County Sheriff Rick Clark said he believed the lowering of the flag to half-staff was a tribute that should be reserved for U.S. citizens. "To show a sign of respect for what Nelson Mandela's done, I have no problem with lowering it in South Africa, in their country," Clark told a local television station. "But in our country, it should be the people, in my opinion, who have sacrificed for our country." On Friday, the sheriff's flag flew at half-staff in honor of a South Carolina law enforcement officer who was killed in the line of duty and it remained lowered through Pearl Harbor Day on Saturday.
U.S. Korean War veteran released by North says made 'confession' under duress
Mon, 09 Dec 2013 20:59:41 -0500
By Alex Dobuzinskis LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - An elderly U.S. Korean War veteran released from detention in North Korea said on Monday a videotaped "confession" he made was given under duress and that he believed he may have been held in a misunderstanding over his interest in the war. Merrill Newman, 85, said in a statement that he was kept under guard in a North Korean hotel during a detention that lasted over a month, and that his interrogator told him he would be sentenced to jail for 15 years if he did not cooperate. Newman, who was a U.S. special forces soldier during the 1950-53 Korean War and worked with guerrillas fighting behind the lines against the communists in the north, was pulled off a flight on October 26 as he was about to leave the reclusive East Asian nation at the end of a tourist visit. The California native was held for crimes North Korea said he committed during the war, when he was a lieutenant with a U.S. Army unit nicknamed the "White Tigers," serving as an adviser to a group of partisans who fought deep behind enemy lines.
Google bus blocked in San Francisco gentrification protest
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 00:31:06 -0500
By Sarah McBride SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A Google Inc commuter bus was blocked in San Francisco's Mission district for about a half hour Monday morning, highlighting many residents' growing concern that an influx of affluent technology workers is driving up costs in the city. "San Francisco, not for sale" and "Stop evictions now" numbered among the slogans yellow-vested protesters chanted as they surrounded the double-decker bus. Google's offices are in Mountain View, about 34 miles away from the incident. The protest, organized by an advocacy group called Heart of the City, took aim at private commuter buses which whisk thousands of employees from stops around San Francisco to jobs at technology companies south of the city such as Apple Inc, Facebook Inc and Google.
Congress renews undetectable gun ban just in time
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 03:16:19 -0500
WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress' easy renewal of an expiring ban on undetectable plastic guns belies the larger reality that one year after the horrific school shooting in Newtown, Conn., major new firearms restrictions have little chance of enactment anytime soon.
Local leaders planning for climate effects
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 03:16:01 -0500
WASHINGTON (AP) — When it comes to climate change, local officials have a message for Washington: Lead or get out of the way.
Tech firms vie to protect personal data, profits
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 03:10:46 -0500
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Even as Silicon Valley speaks out against the U.S. government's surveillance methods, technology companies are turning a handsome profit by mining personal data and peering into people's online habits.
Mass. special congressional race heading to wire
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 03:05:21 -0500
BOSTON (AP) — The candidates seeking to fill Edward Markey's old seat in the U.S. House are making their final appeals to voters in the Massachusetts' 5th Congressional District.
Guilty verdict in California city corruption trial
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 02:44:14 -0500
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A former official in the Los Angeles suburb of Bell was convicted of corruption Monday in a case that drove the city to the brink of bankruptcy.
18 LA sheriff's officials charged in jail probe
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 02:36:22 -0500
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Roughly three years ago, a man referred to in a federal indictment as "Visitor LF" went to Men's Central Jail to discuss his inability to visit his brother there. Instead, a Los Angeles County Sheriff's deputy allegedly handcuffed him, took him to a break room with no windows or public access, and threw him against a refrigerator.
Pa. students' robotic arm can make you stronger
Tue, 10 Dec 2013 02:18:06 -0500
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Need a hand lifting something? A robotic device invented by University of Pennsylvania engineering students can help its wearer carry an additional 40 pounds.