aixAix en ProvencehansenkopljarPSG HandPSG Handball The 23rd round of the LNH with Aix welcoming PSG Handball. The hosts were hopeful they could make small surprise considering PSG Handball’s not that great form in recent weeks. After the first half it seemed like they are still in play, with PSG only having 16-13 at the break. But in the second half, the Paris capital players stormed the goal of Aix. They scored huge 24 goals, while only conceding 11 goals, putting the final score at 40:24 in their favour. PSG Handball are now trailing three points behind Dunkerque, with only three rounds left in the league. ← Previous Story BUNDESLIGA RACE: THW Kiel and RNL with easy wins Next Story → BUNDESLIGA: Flensburg loses to HSV Hamburg, a setback in title race
6HC Motor Zaporoże400498:1080 ← Previous Story Kiel destroy Metalurg – La Rioja win thriller against Zagreb Next Story → Martin Dolk stops Barcelona in TREFOR Arena! 2Pick Szeged4301121:1126 4Kadetten Schaffhausen4112100:1133 3AaB Aalborg Handbold4211102:975 1Vive Tauron Kielce4400128:1118 Polish champions Vive Tauron Kielce celebrate important victory in the Round 4 of the EHF CL Champions League. Team of Talant Dujshebaev won in France against Dunkerque 28:25 and came closer to the first place in the group.Dunkerque HB – Vive Tauron Kielce 25:28 (12:14)Dunkerque: Gerard, Annotel – Afgour 1, Butto 5/3, Causse, Emonet 6/3, Grocaut, Guillard, Joumel, Lamon 3, Mokrani 1, Nagy 6, Paczkowski 1, Pejović, Soudry, Touati 2.Vive: Szmal, Sego – Aquinagalde 3/1, Bielecki 7/1, Chrapkowski 1, Cupić 4, Jachlewski, Jurecki 3, Lijewski 5, Musa, Reichmann 1, Strlek 2, Tkaczyk 2, Zorman.Danish Aalborg have won the points in Ukraine with the same result against Motor – 28:25, while PICK Szeged had outstanding leader, Slovenian playmaker, Dean Bombac (11 goals) in win over Kadetten Schaffhausen – 34:24.STANDINGS: 5Dunkerque HB410392:1002
Arpad Sterbik, Danijel Saric, Mirko Basic, Andrey Lavrov, Marin Sego, Enid Tahirovic, Nikola Blazicko, Mirko Alilovic, Nebojsa Grahovac, are some of the names who will attend the fifth International Handball Goalkeeper’s Camp in Makarska and Tucepi next summer! Unique handball event which is taking place on beautiful Adriatic coast in Croatia since 2010, from June 17-23 will be a place of gathering the TOP handball goalkeeper, coaches and young goalies, which want to learn something new and meet their idols.– Our capacities are almost full. We are already thinking to prolonge Camp for one more week. We built a strong brand in the recent years linked with the TOP goalkeepers, talented goalkeeper, great accomodation and easy-going day on sunny beaches in Tucepi and Makarska – says the Camp director Mario Caljkusic.Some of the names from previous editions were Thierry Omeyer, Kasper Hvidt, Dejan Peric, etc…APPLYFor the fifth Camp anniversary, organizers preparing Charity match which will be played during the Event. Some of the ex and existing TOP stars will come to play as Davor Dominikovic, Patrik Čavar, Stefan Kretzchmar, Ratko Nikolic, etc…. handball goalkeepershandball goalkeepers camphandball makarska ← Previous Story Strong tournament for generation 1996: The third “Handball is my future” in Bugojno Next Story → 23rd European Handball Festival – EUROFEST in Slovenia with over 160 teams
1.Rhein-Neckar121200347:25424 12.Gummersbach11425294:30810 5.Kiel11803324:28316 4.HSG Wetzlar12813320:30317 Fuchse Berlin24 – 27Kiel Hamburg28 – 29Rhein-Neckar 8.Fuchse Berlin11533319:28613 MT Melsungen29 – 22Bergischer Gummersbach31 – 27Goppingen 13.Lemgo12327316:3638 7.Goppingen11704292:25714 STANDINGS: 2.Flensburg-H.12912355:29719 3.MT Melsungen11821319:27018 9.SC Magdeburg12525327:33312 16.HBW Balingen-Weilstetten11209292:3314 dkb bundesliga HSG Wetzlar32 – 21HBW Balingen-Weilstetten TVB Stuttgart33 – 33N-Lübbecke 18.N-Lübbecke120210309:3652 Leipzig36 – 31Eisenach 11.Hannover-Burgdorf12444323:33212 15.Eisenach12219316:3935 Lemgo34 – 34Hannover-Burgdorf 14.TVB Stuttgart13139344:3975 Flensburg-H.33 – 30SC Magdeburg THW Kiel extended their Championship hopes by beating Fucshe Berlin in Max Schmelling 27:24. However, Rhein Neckar Lowen kept the distance on six points by winning tough battle in Hamburg 29:28. TUS Lubbecke are still only team without a win in DKB Bundesliga, but Goran Suton boys won the second point in a row in Stutgart after -7 on the half-time.MT Melsungen continued with fantastic results this season – beating Bergischer 29:22.RESULTS – ROUND 12: 6.Hamburg12714350:31615 17.Bergischer122010298:3504 10.Leipzig11524298:30512 ← Previous Story VIDEO: Crazy welcome party in Cairo Next Story → DHB Cup: Kiel against Flensburg for F4 spot!
Lino Cervar made an unexpected thing in the finish of Croatia – Belarus 25:23 match at Arena Zagreb. The Croatian national team coach dragged Belarussian right back Artur Karvatski for T-shirt in the last attack of the rivals, which could bring them a point against home team.Cervar was asked by journalists after the match about the accident, but he didn’t want to put a lot of attention of it:It wasn’t serious, I was running a lot around the line and contact wasn’t intended – said Cervar. ← Previous Story Croatia win thriller against Belarus Next Story → “Something moves in world of handball” – Talk with Dragan Djukic EHF EURO 2018Lino Cervar
“Yes, I have smoked crack cocaine,” Ford told reporters outside his office. “Am I an addict? No. Have I tried it? Probably in one of my drunken stupors,” he added.(Mayor Rob Ford says he will not resign after admitting to smoking crack. Pic: PA Images: Aaron Vincent Elkaim)Ford said he believed the incident happened “about a year ago,” but admitted: “I don’t know exactly.”“I’ve made mistakes. All I can do now is apologize and move on,” he said. “It is what it is.”Following his admission, Ford rushed back into his office, without commenting on his political future.He had until today steadfastly denied the drug allegations, rebuffed calls for his resignation and vowed to run for re-election next year.The 90-second clip at the center of the scandal has caused an uproar since its existence was first reported in May.The daily Toronto Star and American gossip website Gawker said they had seen the footage, which reportedly showed a man resembling Ford lolling back in a chair in a room, inhaling from what appeared to be a glass crack pipe.But after Gawker raised more than $200,000 in an online campaign to buy the video, it said it was told by its unnamed source that the video was “gone.”Last week, Toronto police chief Bill Blair said technicians had salvaged the deleted video and other data from a hard drive seized in an investigation of the mayor’s longtime friend Alexander Lisi for extortion, related to Lisi’s attempts to recover the video.“I want everyone in the city to see the tape”Ford and his lawyer meanwhile have called on police to release the video, but Blair declined, saying it was evidence in a criminal case now before the courts.“I want everyone in the city to see the tape… I want to see the state I was in,” Ford said Tuesday.Earlier, Ford’s brother Doug, who is also a Toronto city councillor, called for Blair to step aside over comments he had made last week about the video.(Pickets outside a studio where Rob Ford was talking on a radio show at the weekend. Pic: Mark Birch/PA Images)During a press conference last Thursday, Blair confirmed that the mayor appeared in the video and added that he was “disappointed.”“In my opinion, with the chief’s comments the other day, we have the most political police chief I’ve ever seen. The police chief believes he’s the judge, the jury and the executioner,” Doug Ford told a televised press conference.“It’s unacceptable, his comments,” he said. “He’s definitely stepped over the line.”“The chief shouldn’t have come out and made the comments while he was wearing the police chief’s uniform, about his personal opinions about the mayor.”Blair responded: “I’m not going to respond to any personal attacks. We’re going to continue to do our job.”Read: Toronto police say they have video of ‘Mayor with crack pipe’ >Read: Mayor of Toronto beats Hulk Hogan at arm wrestling >© – AFP THE MAYOR OF Toronto has admitted that he once smoked crack, months after a video allegedly showing him taking the drug surfaced and sparked calls for his resignation.Mayor Rob Ford, 44, however denied he was an addict, in comments that marked a stunning turnaround following repeated steadfast denials of the explosive drug allegations.
A 50-YEAR-OLD MAN has died and two other people have been injured in a collision involving a car and two motorbikes in Wicklow this afternoon.The crash happened at Ballinastoe near Roundwood at around 1.50pm today when the motorbike the victim was driving collided with a car.The man was pronounced dead at the scene and his body has been removed to St Columcille’s Hospital for a post mortem.The driver of the car and a second motorcyclist were both taken to St Vincent’s Hospital to be treated for their injuries, which are not believed to be life-threatening.The R755 is currently closed while forensic investigators carry out an examination of the scene.Gardaí have appealed for any witnesses to the fatal collision to contact Wicklow Garda Station on 0404 – 60140 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.
BY NOW, THE PRESENTS have all been opened, the correct batteries have been located and inserted, and the wrapping paper disposed of properly (or saved for next Christmas, if you’re that guy).No doubt you’re delighted with your Christmas present haul, but will you ever be as happy and grateful as this crowd? Probably not.This guy who’s over the moon with his PS3 Source: Jalani PattersonThis dad who can’t believe his son got him tickets to the game Source: Daniel BuckhannanThis little girl who loses it over Hannah Montana tickets Source: kjj1985This little boy who wails like a banshee when he gets his Nintendo 64 Source: raw64lifeThis mum who gets a gift of her daughter’s scan photo and realises she’s going to be a grandmother Source: TheAverageGuy42This One Direction fan who just got tickets to see Harry Styles in the flesh Source: Dawn LeahyThese sisters who are overcome with joy when they see their new puppy Source: John McNamaraAnd this girl who realises the ringing gift bag contains an iPhone Source: Rachael KernDad films his kids coming downstairs every Christmas for 25 years>We hope the victim of this Christmas prank is feeling suitably festive>
IRISH PEOPLE ARE known for their wit.While we’re not really known for sticking to a few words, Irish humour actually comes across pretty well in 140 characters or less.Here, in no particular order, are the funniest Irish people on Twitter.DISCLAIMER! If you’re miffed you or your favourite didn’t make an appearance, don’t worry. Leave anyone we left out in the comments to give them the love you reckon they deserve.Damien Owens – @OwensDamienDamien Owens has written novels and for TV. He also writes funny tweets about his family and current affairs.John Brennan – @ActingAnEejitJohn specialises in whimsy, renaming everyday objects with touch-of-bizarre pun genius.Megan Nolan – @MegarooooFormer stand-up comedian Megan Nolan tweets about her everyday life, the pains of work, and opinions on the inane television programmes she watches on Netflix.Damon Blake – @BlakingPointDamon is a writer, producer and stand-up comedian who tweets observational funnies.Astonishing Sod – @AstonishingSodOff-beat observations, charming nonsense and parody accounts, in equal measure.Carol Tobin – @CarolGertrudeCarol is a stand-up and TV writer with a perfectly observed and brilliantly dour outlook on Irish life. A must-follow.Amy O’Connor – @amyohconnorO’Connor mostly tweets about pop culture and the media, with occasional mentions of the Waterford blaa. She is very funny.Regular Laserhawk – @isitlukeA small Irish introduction to the amazingly funny Weird Twitter, for those not familiar.Colm Tobin – @colmtobinAn Irish Twitter humourist heavyweight.Mark O’Connell – @mrkocnnllMark is a journalist and author, who provides sharp tweets on culture, books and politics – as well as whatever oddities catch his eye. Roxanna Nic Liam – @RoxyNLRoxanna is a comedian and actress, now living in London. In her own words, she is a bleedin’ animal.Alan Maguire – @Alan_MaguireThe man behind @YourRTEGuide, tweeting on Irish current affairs, the media and everything in between. Rumoured to be the nicest man on Twitter.Louise Bruton – @luberachiLouise, also behind @LeglessInDublin, tweets her dry take on pop music, celebrities and her everyday life.Jen Ronan – @JayRowSecretly wishes she lived in a cartoon.Patrick Brennan – @Pat_BrenDescribes himself as “a future failed author”.Baz – @bazlyonsYour daily dose of sarcasm.Colin Chadwick – @colinchadwickGag-heavy, with brilliant one-liners and wry observations wrapped up in puns.Tara Flynn – @TaraFlynnYou’ll recognise this Irish actress from her brilliant YouTube videos. She’s also great on Twitter, serving up her jokes with a hefty side of well-observed political satire. Source: journal-fionaMaia Dunphy – @MaiaDunphyTV producer, broadcaster, writer, good tweeter. How does it all fit on her business card? Source: journal-fionaTwisted Doodles – @twisteddoodlesIrish-focused jokes through lovely cartoons. Just what you want.Your RTE Guide – @YourRTEGuideAnd although we’ve sung their praises many times before, there’s no denying that this parody of the RTE Guide is one of the best Irish humour accounts going.Did we leave anyone out? Let us know in the comments. Read: 11 Instagram accounts sure to make you drool>Read: 5 must-follow Irish parody Twitter accounts>
A BROOCH BELIEVED to have been looted by Vikings over a millennium ago has been found in the storeroom of a London museum.The treasure, a gold disc brooch, dates back to the eighth or ninth century. Its existence was only discovered recently.A lump of soil dug up at a Viking burial site in Norway was acquired by the British Museum in 1891, with the brooch buried deep inside.British Museum curator and Viking expert Barry Ager said his eye was caught by some metal sticking out of the soil and asked for it to be x-rayed, calling the discovery a ‘staggering find’.He told The Observer that it ‘shows the contact between the British Isles and Norway in the Viking period’.It had been buried in the grave of a prominent Viking woman and is believed to have been looted and brought back to Norway.Ager says that the craft shown in making the brooch was ‘very fine’.The British Museum found the brooch in preparing for a major Viking artefact display, which begins in March.Read: €27m in silver recovered from WWII shipwreck off Galway’s coastRead: Illegal treasure-hunters targeted by metal detector guidelines
(Youtube/Associated Press)Ahmad Jarba, the head of the opposition Syrian National Coalition, called on the regime to “immediately” sign a deal reached at the last peace conference in Geneva in 2012 setting out “the transfer of powers from Assad, including for the army and security, to a transition government.”He said that would be “the preamble to Bashar al-Assad’s resignation and his trial alongside all the criminals of his regime.”‘Terrorist crimes in Syria’Syrian state television broadcast Jarba’s speech in a split screen alongside footage of death and destruction under the heading “Terrorist Crimes in Syria”.Leading a series of sharp US accusations against the Syrian regime, Secretary of State John Kerry insisted Assad cannot be part of any transitional government.“There is no way, not possible in the imagination, that the man who has led the brutal response to his own people could regain legitimacy to govern,” Kerry said.US officials also slammed the Syrian delegation for its incendiary remarks and claims of improved aid access as “laughable”.John Kerry points his finger at a press conference during the Syrian peace talks in Montreux, Switzerland. (Pic: AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)Damascus ‘chose inflammatory rhetoric’“Instead of laying out a positive vision for the future of Syria that is diverse, inclusive and respectful of the rights of all, the Syrian regime chose inflammatory rhetoric,” US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.Expectations are very low for a major breakthrough at the conference, but diplomats gathered here believe that simply bringing the two sides together for the first time is a mark of some progress and could be an important first step.Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned the talks will “not be simple, they will not be quick” but urged both sides to seize a “historic opportunity”.About 40 nations and international groups were gathered, but no direct talks are expected until possibly Friday, when opposition and regime delegations will meet in Geneva for negotiations that officials have said could last seven to 10 days.The UN-Arab League envoy for Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, told the closing press conference he would meet on Thursday with both sides to discuss the next step in negotiations.Children of followers of the banned Islamic-oriented Hizb Al-Tahrir, stand behind a banner that reads in Arabic “we will stay here, you go to Geneva”. (Pic: AP Photo/Mohammad Hannon)“Tomorrow I am going to meet them separately and see how best we can move forward,” Brahimi said.“Do we go straight into one room and start discussing or do we talk a little bit more separately?… I don’t know yet.”Erupting after the regime cracked down on protests inspired by the Arab Spring, the civil war has claimed more than 130,000 lives and forced millions from the homes.Recent months have seen the conflict settle into a brutal stalemate — with the death toll rising but neither side making decisive gains.© – AFP 2014Column: Can new peace negotiations end Syria’s three-year nightmare? >Read: War crimes report accuses Syria of torture and 11,000 executions > THE BIGGEST PUSH yet to end Syria’s bloodshed was marked by fiery exchanges as the warring sides and global powers clashed over President Bashar al-Assad’s fate at a UN peace conference.After a day of formal speeches set to be followed this week by talks involving the two sides, UN leader Ban Ki-moon urged Syria’s regime and opposition to finally work together to end the bloodshed.“Our purpose was to send a message to the two Syrian delegations and to the Syrian people that the world wants an urgent end to the conflict,” Ban said in a closing press conference at the talks in the Swiss town of Montreux.“Enough is enough, the time has to come to negotiate,” Ban said. “We must seize this fragile chance.”But official statements made by the delegations today gave no hint of compromise, as the two sides met on the shores of Lake Geneva for the first time since the start of the conflict in March 2011.Branding the opposition “traitors” and foreign agents, Syrian officials insisted Assad will not give up power, while the opposition said he must step down and face trial.“Assad will not go,” Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zohbi said on the sidelines of the conference.Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem wasted no time firing a broadside at the opposition in his opening speech, which went on long beyond the allotted time of less than 10 minutes, forcing Ban to repeatedly ask him to wrap it up.“They (the opposition) claim to represent the Syrian people. If you want to speak in the name of the Syrian people, you should not be traitors to the Syrian people, agents in the pay of enemies of the Syrian people,” Muallem said.
She said that her decision to run in Dublin was influenced by her previous experience as a Green Party councillor on Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council between 2004 and 2008.Childers cited the impact of sitting MEP Marian Harkin and previously Pat Cox as examples of independents providing effective representation.She said that one of the issues she will be campaigning on are “writing off the €34 billion bankers’ gambling debts debt unfairly foisted on citizens”.Read: Junior Minister Brian Hayes is running for Europe‘It’s not personal’: Senator challenging Phil Prendergast for Labour MEP nominationEmer Costello: Single-party FG government would have implemented Greek-like austerity “Dublin needs a strong independent, who is prepared to challenge the old established party thinking,” Childers said in a statement announcing her candidacy.“As an independent I can represent people without being stuck in the past, and stuck with the mistakes of the past – like the old establishment parties.” INDEPENDENT MEP NESSA Childers has opted to run in Dublin in an effort to retain her seat in the European Parliament.The decision means that Childers will be challenging her former Labour Party colleague Emer Costello with three seats available in the capital.Having quit Labour last year and with the constituency of Ireland East abolished, Childers faced a choice between running in Dublin or in the expanded four-seat Ireland South, which included parts of her current base.Her decision to run in the capital is likely to pose challenge for Labour to retain the seat in a constituency where Fine Gael, whose favoured candidate Brian Hayes will announce later on Wednesday, is likely to take at least one seat.Fianna Fáil’s Mary Fitzpatrick, Sinn Féin’s Lynn Boylan, Labour’s Costello, the Socialist Party’s Paul Murphy, the Greens’ Eamon Ryan, and high-profile independents, possibly including Peter Mathews, will be battling it out for the other two seats.
Quite simply when we buy Irish, our euro stays local and in Ireland – and when we buy imported brands or shop in international outlets a significant portion of our euro is immediately shipped overseas. When we shop locally in family owned firms we are making a positive contribution to our community and by extension to the nation as a whole. When spent in our communities our hard earned euro support and create new, local jobs and enable indigenous Irish businesses to in turn support our communities, charities and sports clubs. In this way each of us can add significantly to where we live and work, and can help to create vibrant, thriving villages, towns and cities. It poses the question; while it is legal to export profits, is it morally acceptable? This debate has already been played out in the UK around taxation and perhaps Ireland would benefit from a similar type of debate. The retail sector is a case in point. What level of profit is being exported by the overseas owned grocery chains and why, in the age of transparency, is there very limited transparency in this sector? The Musgrave Group – which is owned and headquartered in Ireland and operates the SuperValu, Centra and Superquinn brands – publishes its profits. If we are to truly understand the impact of buying Irish we should fully understand what the international retailers do with our money, specifically whether it is reinvested in Ireland or shipped overseas to corporate HQ.The knock-on impact of our spending We know that a strong sense of goodwill exists towards the concept of ‘buying Irish’. Research released by Bord Bia in 2011 found that 85 per cent of shoppers were loyal, or conditionally loyal, towards Irish brands. The recent horsemeat controversy has underlined the need for greater understanding of where our food comes from. The issue has shown the effectiveness of Ireland’s food traceability standards and system in that a European wide issue was only brought to light by the Food Safety Authority of Ireland. By considering these issues, we can ensure the quality of our food and that our hard earned euro remain within the country to the benefit of the national economy. THE CALL TO ‘shop local’ is a well-worn mantra that has been preached extensively over the past number of years. As consumers we have been repeatedly told that we should, wherever possible, spend locally. Shopping local and buying Irish ensures the quality of our food and keeps our hard-earned euro within the country and our communities. We must look for value for our spend, but also give consideration to the knock on impact of that spend. The influential Blueprint for Ireland’s Recovery report puts small to medium size enterprises (SMEs) at the frontline of economic recovery. The good news is that by being discerning with our money each of us can play a vitally important part in supporting SMEs and by extension, help to kick-start our national economy. Every euro that we spend on an indigenous product or service has a much more widespread impact than simply benefiting the immediate seller. That spend is distributed among the local producer, the delivery service provider, the shop worker, the shop cleaner and a host of other local businesses and services working together in their community. As the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies study reveals, local businesses invest three times more back into the local economy compared to corporate chains. These statistics indicate that a significant opportunity exists within the indigenous retail sector to generate local spend that would have a powerful impact on our local communities and the economy as a whole. Buying just two more Irish-produced products on each shopping trip equates to a €300 million opportunity for the Irish economy according to Love Irish Food. Similarly, Guaranteed Irish tells us that a typical Irish household spends on average €16 a week on Guaranteed Irish products. By spending €4 more per week on Irish products or services shoppers have the power to create 6,000 jobs.The horsemeat scandal and food traceability The ripple effect of shopping locally should also not be underestimated. The Business Alliance for Local Living Economies reveals that for every €1 spent at a local business, 45 cent is reinvested locally. In contrast, for every €1 spent at a corporate chain, just 15 cent is put back into the local economy. Where does the differential go – overseas, to be reinvested into the national economy of the corporate grocery chain, rather than here in Ireland where it is needed? The economic situation that we find ourselves in can often seem overwhelming, involving astronomical sums. However, every problem or challenge is overcome in small steps. Each of us can make a positive difference and a strong contribution to our recovery by simply practicing savvy shopping. By doing so, our hard-to-come-by euro will remain here at home protecting and generating Irish jobs and enriching our communities, rather than being shipped overseas for the benefit of other countries.Seán Kelly is the Fine Gael MEP for Ireland South. He tweets at @SeanKellyMEP.
THE UNITED STATES was braced for $85 billion (€65 billion) in budget cuts due to hit later today in a self-inflicted wound brought on by deep ideological antipathy between President Barack Obama and Republicans.The cuts, which could cost a million jobs, will slice public services and threaten an economy that is already barely growing, and arrive with both sides agreeing on only one thing — that the other is to blame.The hit to military and domestic spending, known as the sequester, was never supposed to happen, but was rather a doomsday device seen as so punishing that rival lawmakers would be forced to find a better compromise to cut the deficit.But such is the dysfunction in gridlocked Washington that neither side tried very hard to get a deal, with Obama calling for tax revenue hikes on the wealthy and corporations — a demand Republicans flatly refused.“Instead of closing a single tax loophole that benefits the well-off and well-connected, (Republicans) chose to cut vital services for children, seniors, our men and women in uniform and their families,” Obama said.“They voted to let the entire burden of deficit reduction fall squarely on the middle class,” said the president, who has mounted a campaign-style blitz to leverage public opinion against Republicans on the issue.Last-ditch effortObama is required by law to order the budget sequester by 11.59 pm (4.59am GMT) tonight, and the cuts are all due to be made by the end of the year unless a political deal can be reached.He has called top Republican and Democratic leaders to the White House for a last-ditch effort to bridge the gaps on Friday, but few people in Washington believe the meeting is much more than a photo-op.Republicans, who lost a showdown on raising tax rates on the rich late last year, have refused to accept any revenue raises — part of the “balanced” solution, also involving targeted spending cuts, that the president wants.“We’ve laid our cards on the table,” Republican House speaker John Boehner said, explaining why his chamber would take no further action until the Democrat-controlled Senate does.John Cornyn, the number two Senate Republican, said Obama and Democrats had overstated “apocalyptic predictions” of the impact of the sequester.“They are predicting a disaster that will not occur,” Cornyn said.The White House yesterday admitted it would take time for the full impact of the sequester to be felt, as government workers get furlough notices and services, like education for special needs kids, are put at risk.“You cannot responsibly cut $85 billion out of the budget in seven months without having … dramatic effects on the defense industry and civilian workers, on our national security readiness, on teachers,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said.Going through the motions yesterday, senators failed to advance two bills — one Democratic, one Republican — to avert the sequester.Mandatory furloughThe best hope for a deal now lies in the parallel negotiations on a new bill to cover funding for government operations for fiscal year 2013 that must be completed by the end of March.That bill may be the top focus of talks between Obama, Boehner, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and the top Senate and House Democrats Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in the Oval Office today.The White House has warned that the indiscriminate cuts are written into law in such a way that their impact cannot be alleviated.It warns that 800,000 civilian employees of the Defense Department will go on a mandatory furlough one day a week and the navy will trim voyages. The deployment of a second aircraft carrier to the Gulf has been canceled.About 70,000 children less than five years old will be cut from the Head Start preschool program, resulting in the elimination of 14,000 teaching positions. Services for special needs kids will also take a hit.Authorities warn that average wait times for passengers at US immigration will increase by 30-50 percent and may exceed four hours during peak times.Security lines will also grow longer as the Transportation Security Administration enacts a hiring freeze, eliminates overtime and furloughs 50,000 employees.The National Institutes of Health and other federally-funded scientists will have to delay or halt research and the Food and Drug Administration will conduct 2,100 fewer inspections, escalating the risk of food-borne illnesses.The Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington estimates that one million jobs could be lost, and the Congressional Budget Office predicts growth could slip 0.7 per cent.- © AFP, 2013Videos: Obama pledges to reignite economy, fix immigration, fight gun crime
TRADE UNIONS have claimed that the health of Irish healthcare workers has been put at risk by Ireland’s failure to implement an EU directive on the use of medical needles.The ‘Sharps Directive’ bans the practice of ‘recapping’ for medical needles, and also requires improved safety precautions and safer working procedures for healthcare workers who deal with such needles.Specifically, it requires the use of devices where the needle is retracted or shielded – meaning a needlepoint should not be exposed until it is immediately used.The Irish Congress of Trade Unions says member states were due to adopt the directive by today – the eve of International Nurses Day.ICTU’s legal affairs officer Esther Lynch said needlestick injuries among healthcare workers were ‘notoriously’ unreported – and that workers were injured anywhere between 1,000 and 6,000 times a year.A 2011 report by the INMO found that one in three nurses had suffered needlestick injuries – a phenomenon which, Lynch said, illustrated how dangerous exposed needles were.“A sharp contaminated by infected blood can transmit more than 20 diseases including hepatitis B, C and HIV,” she said.“Victims of needle stick injuries often suffer many months of anguish and uncertainty as they await results. There are also significant health effects associated with post injury prophylactic medications and treatment.”ICTU has called on jobs minister Richard Bruton to implement Irish laws, giving legal effect to the EU directive, without delay.“The Health & Safety Committee of Congress is recommending the establishment of Needlestick & Sharps injury prevention committees to oversee the implementation of the Directive,” Lynch said.“These committees should include representatives from all levels, employers and unions including health and safety representatives, occupational health, risk management, purchasing, housekeeping, infection control, employee education and training.”Read: INMO chief dismisses ‘man who cried wolf’ suggestions on strike action
Source: SkyMediaHub via YouTubeAGNES BROWN IS one popular woman. She’s big in Ireland, big in Australia, big in Canada, and soon to be on the big screen.You probably already know the story – Irish comedian Brendan O’Carroll created the curlers-and-cardigan wearing Agnes Brown back in the early 1990s, bringing her to the stage, radio, books, and films.She was even played by Anjelica Houston in a 1999 rom-com based on O’Carroll’s book The Mammy.On the TV show Mrs Brown’s Boys, Agnes Brown is a forceful Irish matriarch, full of crude wise-cracks and naughty winks. She doesn’t self-censor, she’s salty and a salt-of-the-earth Dubliner, and she doesn’t give a hoot if you don’t like her.She doesn’t just appeal to those with Irish mammies – the sitcom was the most-watched show on BBC last Christmas Day. Clearly, the lady has international appeal. Source: PA Archive/Press Association ImagesAnother side to AgnesThose who only know Mrs Brown’s Boys from its current small-screen incarnation might be surprised to hear that there’s more depth to Brown than they realise.O’Carroll’s own family history intersects with Brown’s story, and a new exhibition at the Little Museum of Dublin looks not only at the comedian’s heritage, but how he created his character Agnes Brown.“Our goal was to engage people who have never even heard of Mrs Brown,” said the curator of the exhibition, Kimberley Foy.That’s why there’s so much focus on Brendan’s parents, whose stories reveal much about Dublin in the middle of the last century. We wanted to make a chapter of social history as well as a backstage tour.O’Carroll left school in Dublin at the age of 12 and worked as a waiter, disco manager, milkman, pirate radio DJ and decorator before finding fame.What’s striking is that the roots for his creation of Mrs Brown are in Ireland’s social and political history: the War of Independence, the traders of Moore Street, and growing up in a house full of women. Brendan O’Carroll and his mum, MaureenStanding up for the working classAs curator, once Foy started digging and doing a little research into O’Carroll’s background, she discovered that he “had a fantastically interesting family story”.His mother Maureen was a former nun who went on to become a Labour TD and then the equivalent to the consumer watchdog of her day.“It’s interesting how his own mother would have railed against prescribed roles in her time – she did not agree that the place of women was the home,” said Foy. “She found a role for herself in the public eye fighting for social justice.”“She stood up for the working class people.”She was involved in a particular case where she barged into the premises of Bachelor’s peas with members of an Garda Siochána with a warrant, because she suspected some of the peas were substandard. She wasn’t afraid of anyone.The exhibition also looks at O’Carroll’s father Gerard’s family, and his grandfather’s involvement in the War of Independence.‘Moore St gave birth to Mrs Brown’ Source: Hulton Archive“She didn’t come out of nowhere,” said Foy of Agnes Brown. “She’s inspired by these very hardworking women who traded on the streets, Moore St in particular.”Brown is as much a product of working-class Dublin as she is O’Carroll’s imagination, but as a character she’s like looking in a funhouse mirror: you can see where things are normal, but parts are distended or rendered unrecognisable.And it’s this over-the-top characterisation, the sexual innuendo, the filthy jokes and nudges and winks that appeal to a broad audience.Viewers might not want to be her, they might not have a mammy exactly like her, but appreciate her uncensored opinions and ability to knee-slap her way out of a situation.This is also what those who don’t like Mrs Brown’s Boys roll their eyes at – the puerile humour, the lowest common denominator situations, the staged silliness of it all.But there’s a lot of depth to that character “that maybe people don’t appreciate” said Foy. By examining Mrs Brown’s story, we also delve into Dublin’s history and cultural heritage.Dublin is this sort of unassuming major character in Mrs Brown’s Boys – Dublin gave birth to Mrs Brown’s Boys, Moore St gave birth to Mrs Brown. There’s so much there than people give her credit for or give [O’Carroll] credit for.Agnes is tough, but she’s also a loving mother.“Even though she’s a Dublin mammy, and an Irish mammy, and fits into a very particular idea we have in Dublin about what mammies are, she’s a universal mammy,” said Foy.Why is Mrs Brown’s Boys so popular?Writer and producer Colm Tobin hasn’t watched a lot of Mrs Brown’s Boys, but has seen his opinion of the sitcom change over the years.“I used to really despise it when it came on air first – it just felt like an embarrassing throw back to the 70′s. I just didn’t get it,” he told TheJournal.ie. “I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why it was so popular in the UK.”It was when he saw the positive experiences other people had of the show that he began to change his mind.I guess it was when I was at home at Christmas around older members of the family that I realised how much joy it brought to a lot of people and that it has pretty broad family appeal.“I guess the ratings don’t lie – people aren’t being forced to watch it at gunpoint (as far as I know),” he added.Where does Mrs Brown’s Boys fit into the comedy world? “My feeling on it is that there’s room for lots of different types of comedy in TV, from the obscure critically acclaimed stuff that sweeps the boards at The Comedy Awards to the really broad hit-them-over-the-head-with-a-hammer stuff like Mrs Brown’s,” observed Tobin.He thinks that for a long time broadcasters forgot to cater for the latter “and commissioned stuff like The Office that, though clearly brilliant, isn’t something you might want to sit down and watch after a day working in, say, a call centre”.While he would personally prefer to see more shows like Limmy’s Show or Hunderby being made, he thinks national broadcasters “still have a duty to entertain the masses, as it were, and I don’t think these two things are mutually exclusive”.So fair play to Brendan O’ Carroll. How many squillion Brits tune in at Christmas?What our readers think about Mrs Brown’s BoysWe asked on Twitter what our readers think of the show – here’s what they said: Source: Richard Drumm via Twitter Source: Eleanor via Twtitter Source: Baz Moran via Twitter Source: James Keating via Twitter Source: Tom Doorley via Twitter Source: Joe Joe via Twitter Source: Roisin Burke via Twitter Source: Gav Reilly via TwitterProduced with assistance from Brendan O’Carroll and Universal Pictures International Ireland, Mrs Brown D’Exhibition runs until July 20th. Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie opens on June 27th. Read: There’s a Romanian version of Mrs Brown’s Boys called Auntie Flowers>Read: Here’s the first trailer for the Mrs Brown’s Boys movie>Read: Mrs Brown’s Boys the most watched programme in the UK on Christmas Day>
Nintendo’s 3DS isn’t going to be available until March 27th, but if you are worried about the hot new device selling out before you get your hands on one, you can pre-order today.The 3DS is available in two colors (blue and black) from all the usual suspects, so hop on over to Amazon, Target, Game Stop, or Walmart and yoiu can lock one (or more) down. There has been one unsubstantiated hint at a Wii-like shortage, but it was for the Japanese market. It could happen though, especially if Nintendo enjoyed the buzz around the Wii’s scarcity and wants to give it another try this time around.The 3DS is selling for just about $250 every where you look, so don’t expect any discounts. The one seller with a slight advantage seems to be Walmart, who has it priced at $249.00 and includes a free case.The “Bonus Flex Case”, pictured below, doesn’t look very attractive, but it should get the job done.And the links…Amazon – 3DS in aqua blueAmazon – 3DS in blackGameStop – 3DS in blueGameStop – 3DS in blackTarget – 3DS in blueTarget – 3DS in blackWalmart – 3DS with free case
Your iPad isn’t the only one of your Apple gadgets that can have a bambo case, now your MacBook can as well.The Silva case is available for both the 13 and 15 inch models of the laptop, and is lined with wool felt to keep everything inside safe and sound. It also features a leather strap, but, best of all, is made completely from sustainable bamboo.AdChoices广告“Bamboo is one of the fastest-growing plants on Earth,” Silva’s site reads. “Unlike trees, all bamboo plants have the potential to grow to a full height and girth, in a single growing season of three to four months. This helps minimize our dependency on our forests therefore making bamboo a truly ‘green’ product.”The hand made cases can be purchased here for $179.99.Via Wired
If you’ve ever had a procedure done using an endoscope, you can agree that it’s not the most pleasant experience. A trip to an otolaryngologist, also known as the ear, nose and throat doctor, can result in a tiny tube with a camera on the end being inserted through your nose and down to your throat. This procedure is nothing compared to the work endoscopes do in such fields as cardiology and in robotic surgery. Thanks to the world’s smallest video camera, things might be getting a little easier.Developed by Medigus, a medical tech company based in Omer, Israel, the new camera is just 0.99mm in diameter, which is smaller than a grain of salt. The camera will be an asset for delicate procedures in the areas mentioned above, as well as in gastroenterology, orthopedics, gynecology, robotic surgery, and let’s just add urology in there for good measure.AdChoices广告The silicone-based video camera is actually pretty inexpensive, which means it can easily be disposed. When a product is manufactured and sold in such large amounts, it results in the costs being low enough to make them disposable, which means no messy cleanup for the nurses. There will also be a reusable version for those earth-friendly doctors who prefer not to dispose of unnecessary materials.The camera has a 0.66mm by 0.66mm CMOS sensor, which gives it a 45,000-pixel resolution. In actuality, that’s just under one-twentieth of a megapixel, so the resolution is not actually that great. Still, it gets the job done, and there’s always room for improvement.According to a press release from Medigus, the “global miniature camera market for disposable endoscopic devices” in 2011 is said to be at 4 million units, and will be at 7 million units in 2015. Clearly, there’s a market for these products.Medigus will be shipping sample cams in the next few weeks to companies in the U.S. and Japan that make cardiology devices. There’s no word on the pricing yet, but we’re curious as to what “cheap” means in the endoscopic field.Via Yahoo! News
Sony’s E3 press conference started with an apology for the events surrounding the massive PSN hack that Sony suffered in April and essentially spent the entirety of May trying to fix. Sony’s security problems are ongoing, but if it weighed on the minds of execs on stage, you wouldn’t know it – Sony’s presser is all about the games, and there are plenty of great-looking titles to go around.AdChoices广告The GamesThe event started off with a beautiful 3D highlight reel of some of Sony’s most popular properties, after which they dove right into the biggest sequels to hit the console this year. Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception saw some demo time, and Sony spent a little time talking about the upcoming multiplayer demo of Uncharted 3, scheduled to start on July 28th. If you’re not interested in the demo, the game will be out on November 1st.Resistance 3 also got some airtime, and Sony announced they would bundle the game with the Sharpshooter and the PlayStation Move (as well as a PS Eye camera and Navigation Controller) for $150, which will give you the full motion-control experience while playing the game.We also got to take a peek at Bioshock: Infinite, which won’t be a PlayStation 3 exclusive, but certainly looks good–we haven’t heard much about the game recently, so even a short look at what the upcoming game will look like is a welcome one.3DSony is also betting that 3D is the future of interactive gaming. They’re going to the extent of launching a PlayStation-branded 3D HDTV. The new 24-inch 3D display, manufactured by Sony of course, along with a pair of 3D glasses, HDMI cables to connect it all, and a copy of Resistance 3 in 3D will set you back $500. If you want to play with friends, you’ll have to drop another $70 for each additional pair of glasses.Once all of your friends have glasses, you can each look at the display and each of you sees a full-screen version of your game. This allows Sony to avoid split-screening for multiplayer. This feature will be unique to Sony’s 3D HDTVs.PS VitaAlso unveiled at the show is the new PlayStation Vita, the replacement for the PSP, previously known as the NGP (Next Generation Portable.) The PS Vita will come in WiFi and 3G flavors and be an exclusive to AT&T’s network, which elicited more than a few boos from the audience. The Vita will also sport six-axis controls, dual thumbsticks, dual-touchpads (the screen on the front is a touchpad, and there’s a touch-sensitive pad on the rear of the device,) and both front-facing and rear cameras for augmented reality games.Sony also showed off an Uncharted game built for the PS Vita called Uncharted: Golden Abyss, and a Diablo-like 3rd person swords-and-sorcery game called Ruin. Sony used Ruin to demo Sony’s new cloud storage system for game states, and how a player can game on their PS Vita, save their game, and pick up immediately where they left off on their PS3 at home.We also got a peek at a new Modnation Racers game for the PS Vita, as well as a new version of Little Big Planet. Both games were shown primarily as as a way to demo the cross-platform functionality between the handheld and the PlayStation 3, and how gamers will have all of the content creation tools they’re used to on the PS3 on the PS Vita. The upcoming Wipeout 2048 will allow PS Vita gamers to play online, live, against PS3 gamers.Yoshinori Ono, of Capcom Japan, took the stage to share the news that there’ll be a version of Street Fighter x Tekken for the PS Vita. Bonus: Cole from inFAMOUS and inFAMOUS 2 will be in the game, complete with all of his electric abilities and attacks. The PS3 version of Street Fighter x Tekken will is on the show floor, available to play at E3.Sony concluded the event with a promo reel full of upcoming PS Vita titles, and announcing that the WiFi model will be $249.99, while the 3G model will be $299.99. Both models will be available just in time for the holiday shopping season this year.