Archive | October, 2013

Obama cites early setbacks of Mass. health law

31 Oct

BOSTON (AP) — President Barack Obama chose the site where Massachusetts’ health care system became law to promote his signature health insurance program, arguing that the state plan also faced initial setbacks and low enrollment but in time gained popularity and became a success.

“All the parade of horribles, the worst predictions about health care reform in Massachusetts never came true,” he said. “They’re the same arguments that you’re hearing now.”

The Massachusetts’ law provided the model for the federal health insurance overhaul. Obama spoke in Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall, where Massachusetts Republican Gov. Mitt Romney was joined by the late Democratic Sen. Ted Kennedy to sign the state’s 2006 health care overhaul bill.

The president pointed to benefits already available under the 3-year-old health care law, including ending discrimination against children with pre-existing conditions and permission to keep young people on their parents’ insurance plans until they turn 26.

But he conceded the troubled launch of the open enrollment period that began Oct. 1.

“I am not happy about it,” he said.

Underscoring the president’s challenge, the HealthCare.gov website was down, because of technical difficulties, during his remarks. Republicans say the current computer dysfunction is more reason to repeal the law, and they’re pressing Obama administration officials for an explanation.

Obama also tried to clarify the most recent controversy surrounding the law — the wave of cancellation notices hitting small businesses and individuals who buy their own insurance. Obama repeatedly had vowed that people who liked their insurance would be able to keep it.

The cancellation notices apply to people whose plans changed after the law was implemented or don’t meet new coverage requirements. The president said those changes ensure that all Americans are able to get quality coverage.

He said that because of government subsidies, most people who must get new policies will pay less than they do now. But he acknowledged that “a fraction of Americans with higher incomes” will likely pay more.

Romney took issue with Obama’s characterization of the Massachusetts health care law. In a statement, he said “had President Obama actually learned the lessons of Massachusetts health care, millions of Americans would not lose the insurance they were promised they could keep, millions more would not see their premiums skyrocket and the installation of the program would not have been a frustrating embarrassment.” During the 2012 presidential campaign, Romney had pledged to work for the repeal of Obama’s health care law if elected.

Obama, who lived in Boston while a student at Harvard University, was in town for a World Series game day, but his spokesman said he didn’t plan to make a side trip to Fenway Park, mindful of the impact his security entourage has on the public.

While in Boston, Obama also spoke at a fundraiser for House Democrats, where about 60 people dined on Spanish-influenced fare, followed by Red Sox cookies honoring the World Series game being played in town the same night.

Invoking the school shooting in nearby Connecticut and the Boston Marathon bombing, Obama said it had been a “challenging year.” He said he had hoped the tragedies would presage a new spirit of cooperation in Congress, but Americans got obstruction, instead.

“However low people’s estimations were of Washington before the shutdown,” Obama said, “they’re lower now.”

___

Associated Press writer Steve LeBlanc in Boston contributed to this report.

___

Follow Nedra Pickler on Twitter at https://twitter.com/nedrapickler

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-cites-early-setbacks-mass-health-law-224529968–finance.html
Related Topics: Ariel Castro  

There’s no free lunch, but there could be a ‘free’ Windows

30 Oct

There’s a lot of talk today that operating systems want to be free, perhaps thanks mainly to Apple’s marketing of its free upgrade to its latest versons of OS X, iLife, and iWork. InfoWorld’s Paul Venezia recently wrote, “Relying on income generated by selling an operating system of any type is becoming a fool’s game, and woe be unto them who miss the signs.” Give the OS away, just like Apple is supposedly doing. Eliminate the OS as a for-cost item. Make your money from the hardware and services.

Microsoft has been thinking this way, too. In July, in a letter to all Microsoft employees, CEO Steve Ballmer wrote, “the form and delivery of our value will shift to devices and services versus packaged software.” Consider the Surface tablet: You purchase the device with its Windows RT OS and Office 2013 included. Consider the Xbox: You purchase the game system complete with its operating system. Mobile devices too: You purchase the device with an OS already on it. There’s no extra cost in any of those cases.

[ The InfoWorld deathmatch review: Windows 8.1 vs. OS X Mavericks. | 10 excellent new features in Windows Server 2012 R2 | For quick, smart takes on the news you’ll be talking about, check out InfoWorld TechBrief — subscribe today. ]

Still, I’m baffled as to why people think the OS should be free. Because Apple is perceived as giving away its software for free? Sorry, but you are paying for that OS. It’s part of the hardware cost, just as it is when you buy a new PC. Yes, the OS X Mavericks upgrade is free, but so is Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 upgrade. Yes, Apple is making more upgrades free of charge to more previous OS X versions than Microsoft is doing for Windows users. But that’s a matter of degree, based on the fact its business isn’t based on software sales but on hardware and service sales.

Apple is making a lot of hay on its free upgrades, overstating the case in an effective PR move. At the Apple event last week Mac chief Craig Federighi said “the days of spending hundreds of dollars to get the most from your computer are gone.” Ha! At the same event, Apple announced the $2,999 Mac Pro. Thank goodness we aren’t paying for the OS or iWork, because that would really hurt! Come on, people! Let’s not be naive about things being “free.”

Giving away iWork is a sign of desperation for Apple, though giving away something nobody wants or uses in the enterprise could be a brilliant move — it may shift some people from Office if they find they can do what they want with the free iWork on their Macs. On the other hand, Apple reduced the feature set in OS X’s iWork to be compatible with its less-capable iOS and Web versions, so perhaps “brilliant” is an overstatement.

Microsoft is not (yet) a hardware-and-software company the way Apple is, so it can’t give away Windows 8 to XP and Vista users as Apple can give Mavericks to Lion and Mountain Lion users — and never mind that Mavericks is a minor upgrade to those OSes, whereas Windows 8 is a huge shift. Microsoft certainly cannot give away Office, a core business for it, as Apple can give away iWork, a minor business for it. Yet Microsoft is basically on the same page as Apple for the long term, as Ballmer said and as the free Windows 8.1 upgrade and inclusion of Office on Windows RT systems show.

Remember, something has to pay for the development costs, and whether that cost is buried in hardware or spread across hardware, software, and services doesn’t really matter at the end of the day. You’ll pay the same for it however it is allocated.

It’s likely that Windows and Office will end up being free because they’ll be offered as an Office 365 subscription, where their cost is included in the subscription. The new game is to treat software as a subscription — Windows, Office, Xbox, Exchange, SharePoint, and Lync — rather than as a discrete purchase. That’s how we will see a world where Windows is “free.”

This story, “There’s no free lunch, but there could be a ‘free’ Windows,” was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Read more of J. Peter Bruzzese’s Enterprise Windows blog and follow the latest developments in Windows at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

Source: http://www.infoworld.com/d/microsoft-windows/theres-no-free-lunch-there-could-be-free-windows-229743?source=rss_infoworld_top_stories_
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Results of the SAFE-PCI trial presented at TCT 2013

30 Oct

Results of the SAFE-PCI trial presented at TCT 2013

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PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

29-Oct-2013

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Contact: Judy Romero
jromero@crf.org
Cardiovascular Research Foundation

Novel study finds using radial versus femoral access during cardiac catheterization may have benefits in women

SAN FRANCISCO, CA October 29, 2013 A clinical trial conducted exclusively in women suggests that an initial strategy of using the radial artery in the arm as the entry point for cardiac catheterization or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in women has potential for reducing bleeding complications. SAFE-PCI for Women is the first registry-based randomized trial in the United States and the first multicenter trial comparing radial with femoral access in the U.S., and its primary findings were presented today at the 25th annual Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) scientific symposium. Sponsored by the Cardiovascular Research Foundation (CRF), TCT is the world’s premier educational meeting specializing in interventional cardiovascular medicine.

Women are at particular risk for bleeding and vascular complications after PCI. While a transradial approach can potentially reduce these complications, this technique has never been prospectively studied in women. Women also have smaller radial arteries than men making radial PCI potentially more challenging.

The SAFE-PCI for Women Trial randomized 1,787 women undergoing elective PCI, urgent PCI or diagnostic catheterization with possible PCI to either a radial or femoral approach. In a novel approach designed to minimize trial costs, the trial used prospectively gathered data collection instruments based upon the existing National Cardiovascular Research Infrastructure (NCRI), a clinical trial infrastructure created through collaboration between the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the American College of Cardiology, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. It was also built on the NCDR CathPCI Registry, the largest ongoing PCI registry in the world.

The primary efficacy endpoint was bleeding (BARC Types 2, 3 or 5) or vascular complications requiring intervention within 72 hours post-procedure or at hospital discharge, whichever came first. The primary feasibility endpoint was procedural failure defined as the inability to complete the PCI from the assigned access site.

After 1,120 patients had been randomized, 446 of whom had undergone PCI, review of data by the Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) showed that the primary efficacy event rate was markedly lower than expected. The DSMB recommended termination of the trial because the trial was unlikely to show a difference at the planned sample size. No harm was noted in either arm; therefore, the Steering Committee voted to continue the study until enrollment in a quality-of-life sub study was complete.

A total of 1,787 patients were randomized (893 to radial access, 894 to femoral access), 691 of those who underwent PCI (345 radial access and 346 femoral access). In the PCI group, bleeding and complication rates were 1.2 percent in the radial group compared to 2.9 percent in the femoral group (p=0.12). When assessing the overall cohort of randomized patients (those receiving both diagnostic procedures alone as well as those receiving PCI), bleeding and complication rates were 0.6 percent vs. 1.7 percent (p=0.03). The overall procedural failure rate was 6.7 percent in the radial group and 1.9 percent in the femoral group (p

“The SAFE-PCI for Women trial represents several ‘firsts.’ It is the first randomized trial of interventional strategies in women, the first multicenter randomized trial comparing radial with femoral access in the United States, and the first registry-based randomized trial in the U.S. The treatment benefit of radial access over femoral access was larger than expected (~60 percent) in both the PCI group and total randomized cohorts,” said lead investigator Sunil V. Rao, MD. Dr. Rao is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University Medical Center.

“Findings suggest that an initial strategy of radial access is reasonable and may be preferred in women, with the recognition that a proportion of patients will require bailout to femoral access,” Dr. Rao added.

“As the first registry-based randomized trial in the United States, the SAFE-PCI for Women trial demonstrates a new paradigm shift for conducting efficient practical clinical trials using the National Cardiovascular Research Infrastructure. This trial construct is a promising approach for future clinical investigations.”

###

The SAFE-PCI for Women trial was funded by a consortium of academic, industry, and government entities including Abbott Vascular, ACIST Medical, Eli Lilly, Guerbet, Medtronic, Terumo Medical, The Medicines Company, the FDA Office of Women’s Health, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. Dr. Rao reported being a consultant for AstraZeneca and The Medicines Company.


About CRF and TCT


The Cardiovascular Research Foundation (CRF) is an independent, academically focused nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the survival and quality of life for people with cardiovascular disease through research and education. Since its inception in 1991, CRF has played a major role in realizing dramatic improvements in the lives of countless numbers of patients by establishing the safe use of new technologies and therapies in interventional cardiovascular medicine. CRF is the sponsor of the Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) scientific symposium. Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, TCT is the world’s premier educational meeting specializing in interventional cardiovascular medicine. For more information, visit http://www.crf.org and http://www.tctconference.com.




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Results of the SAFE-PCI trial presented at TCT 2013

[ Back to EurekAlert! ]

PUBLIC RELEASE DATE:

29-Oct-2013

[

| E-mail

]


Share Share

Contact: Judy Romero
jromero@crf.org
Cardiovascular Research Foundation

Novel study finds using radial versus femoral access during cardiac catheterization may have benefits in women

SAN FRANCISCO, CA October 29, 2013 A clinical trial conducted exclusively in women suggests that an initial strategy of using the radial artery in the arm as the entry point for cardiac catheterization or percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) in women has potential for reducing bleeding complications. SAFE-PCI for Women is the first registry-based randomized trial in the United States and the first multicenter trial comparing radial with femoral access in the U.S., and its primary findings were presented today at the 25th annual Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) scientific symposium. Sponsored by the Cardiovascular Research Foundation (CRF), TCT is the world’s premier educational meeting specializing in interventional cardiovascular medicine.

Women are at particular risk for bleeding and vascular complications after PCI. While a transradial approach can potentially reduce these complications, this technique has never been prospectively studied in women. Women also have smaller radial arteries than men making radial PCI potentially more challenging.

The SAFE-PCI for Women Trial randomized 1,787 women undergoing elective PCI, urgent PCI or diagnostic catheterization with possible PCI to either a radial or femoral approach. In a novel approach designed to minimize trial costs, the trial used prospectively gathered data collection instruments based upon the existing National Cardiovascular Research Infrastructure (NCRI), a clinical trial infrastructure created through collaboration between the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the American College of Cardiology, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. It was also built on the NCDR CathPCI Registry, the largest ongoing PCI registry in the world.

The primary efficacy endpoint was bleeding (BARC Types 2, 3 or 5) or vascular complications requiring intervention within 72 hours post-procedure or at hospital discharge, whichever came first. The primary feasibility endpoint was procedural failure defined as the inability to complete the PCI from the assigned access site.

After 1,120 patients had been randomized, 446 of whom had undergone PCI, review of data by the Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) showed that the primary efficacy event rate was markedly lower than expected. The DSMB recommended termination of the trial because the trial was unlikely to show a difference at the planned sample size. No harm was noted in either arm; therefore, the Steering Committee voted to continue the study until enrollment in a quality-of-life sub study was complete.

A total of 1,787 patients were randomized (893 to radial access, 894 to femoral access), 691 of those who underwent PCI (345 radial access and 346 femoral access). In the PCI group, bleeding and complication rates were 1.2 percent in the radial group compared to 2.9 percent in the femoral group (p=0.12). When assessing the overall cohort of randomized patients (those receiving both diagnostic procedures alone as well as those receiving PCI), bleeding and complication rates were 0.6 percent vs. 1.7 percent (p=0.03). The overall procedural failure rate was 6.7 percent in the radial group and 1.9 percent in the femoral group (p

“The SAFE-PCI for Women trial represents several ‘firsts.’ It is the first randomized trial of interventional strategies in women, the first multicenter randomized trial comparing radial with femoral access in the United States, and the first registry-based randomized trial in the U.S. The treatment benefit of radial access over femoral access was larger than expected (~60 percent) in both the PCI group and total randomized cohorts,” said lead investigator Sunil V. Rao, MD. Dr. Rao is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University Medical Center.

“Findings suggest that an initial strategy of radial access is reasonable and may be preferred in women, with the recognition that a proportion of patients will require bailout to femoral access,” Dr. Rao added.

“As the first registry-based randomized trial in the United States, the SAFE-PCI for Women trial demonstrates a new paradigm shift for conducting efficient practical clinical trials using the National Cardiovascular Research Infrastructure. This trial construct is a promising approach for future clinical investigations.”

###

The SAFE-PCI for Women trial was funded by a consortium of academic, industry, and government entities including Abbott Vascular, ACIST Medical, Eli Lilly, Guerbet, Medtronic, Terumo Medical, The Medicines Company, the FDA Office of Women’s Health, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. Dr. Rao reported being a consultant for AstraZeneca and The Medicines Company.


About CRF and TCT


The Cardiovascular Research Foundation (CRF) is an independent, academically focused nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the survival and quality of life for people with cardiovascular disease through research and education. Since its inception in 1991, CRF has played a major role in realizing dramatic improvements in the lives of countless numbers of patients by establishing the safe use of new technologies and therapies in interventional cardiovascular medicine. CRF is the sponsor of the Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics (TCT) scientific symposium. Celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, TCT is the world’s premier educational meeting specializing in interventional cardiovascular medicine. For more information, visit http://www.crf.org and http://www.tctconference.com.




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AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert! system.

Source: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2013-10/crf-rot102913.php
Related Topics: roger federer   true blood  

This flame is made of pure water

29 Oct

This flame is made of pure water

Scientists have invented a new low-cost method to create a safe welding flame using water as its only fuel. Called the Safeflame, the device splits water in oxygen and hydrogen, recombining them both outside of the torch’s mouth to create fire. And the only byproduct is water.

Read more…

    

Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/Ekpg9hzOrRs/@jesusdiaz
Category: jennette mccurdy   lesean mccoy   monday night football   mila kunis   The White Queen  

Gomes lifts Red Sox over Cards 4-2, evens WS 2-all

28 Oct

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Jonny Gomes arrived at Busch Stadium expecting to watch Game 4 of the World Series from the Red Sox dugout. Halfway through batting practice, Boston’s plans changed.

“All I fought for in this year of mine is just the opportunity,” Gomes said. “So when my number is called, I’m stepping up. I’m not dodging any situation.”

Shane Victorino couldn’t shake his bad back. With the Red Sox trailing St. Louis by two games to one in the World Series, Gomes was going to start in left field.

“Came out to the dugout, looked up the lineup card, and now you’re going to have to protect David Ortiz,” Gomes would say later. “Good luck with all of that.”

Good luck, indeed.

Gomes hit a tiebreaking, three-run homer off reliever Seth Maness in the sixth inning, and the Red Sox beat the Cardinals 4-2 Sunday night to even the Series and ensure it will end back at Boston’s Fenway Park.

“He’s been one of our leaders in the clubhouse,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “His importance to this team goes above and beyond the numbers that he puts up.”

Now 32 and with his fifth major league organization, Gomes has never been an All-Star, never won a Gold Glove. He has a .244 career average in 11 major league seasons but does have some pop — 149 career home runs.

His path to the big leagues was unusual. In an interview published by weei.com in June, Gomes said “I’ve almost died five times” and the recounted the incidents. A candle and lighter set his sleeping bag on fire during his freshman year in high school; a car crash that sent him to a hospital the following year and killed one of his friends; he nearly was shot during a camping trip in his senior year; he had a heart attack on Christmas Eve 2002; and then he encountered with a wolf.

Gomes made his big league debut for Tampa Bay at Yankee Stadium the following September and stayed with the franchise until 2008. But he was left off the postseason roster that year. In the World Series for the first time, he entered Sunday in a terrible slump: 5 for 40 (.125) with two RBIs in his postseason career, including 0 for 9 in this Series.

While Victorino’s back started stiffening Saturday, the Flyin’ Hawaiian planned to play.

“When I met with Shane today, he said, ‘Yeah, put me in there. I’ll find a way to get ready to start the game,'” Farrell said. “As we went through the other work, it became obvious he wasn’t capable. And you know what, it turns out that his replacement is the difference in this one tonight with a three-run homer.”

Gomes helped Boston get started in the fifth when he followed David Ortiz’s leadoff double with a 10-pitch walk that wore down starter Lance Lynn, who had faced the minimum 12 batters through the first four innings.

Stephen Drew’s sacrifice fly tied the score 1-all, erasing a deficit created when center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury’s third-inning error advanced Matt Carpenter into scoring position for Carlos Beltran’s RBI single.

David Ortiz, who is 8 for 11 (.727) in the Series after a three-hit night, was Boston’s leader, smacking his hands together and screaming at teammates to get going when he pulled into second base on his double. Then, after the fifth inning, he huddled the Red Sox for a pep talk in the dugout.

“Let’s loosen up and let’s try to play baseball the way we normally do,” Ortiz remembered telling them. “I know we are a better team than what we had shown. Sometimes you get to this stage and you try to overdo things, and it doesn’t work that way.”

Message heard.

“It was like 24 kindergartners looking up at their teacher,” Gomes said, “He got everyone’s attention, and we looked him right in the eyes. That message was pretty powerful.”

Not long after, Gomes’ drive put Boston ahead 4-1.

With adrenaline taking over, Gomes spiked an arm through the air as he rounded first base, yelled and banged his chest with his right fist twice. Teammates tugged on Gomes’ beard for good luck when he got back to the dugout, including a two-handed pull by Mike Napoli.

“I’d probably screw it up or mess it up if I tried to put it in words,” Gomes said. “What’s going on inside here is pretty special, magical. There’s so many people and so many mentors and so many messages and so many helping paths and helping ways for me to get here, that there’s a lot more than what I could bring individually. And then I step into the box in the World Series and I’m all alone. There’s some people out there that need to get praised, and hopefully they take their two cents that they put into my career at some point, and I’m grateful for that.”

NOTES: A night after the first postseason game to end on an obstruction call, there was another milestone: the first to end on a pickoff. Koji Uehara caught pinch-runner Kolten Wong off first with Beltran at the plate. … Felix Doubront got the win with 2 2-3 innings of one-hit relief. … John Lackey, the Game 2 loser and Boston’s probable Game 6 starter, pitched the eighth for his first relief appearance in nine years, overcoming a two-base throwing error by third baseman Xander Bogaerts — Boston’s seventh error of the Series — and a wild pitch. … Lance Lynn was the hard-luck loser, leaving with the score tied and two on for Maness, who allowed Gomes’ homer on his fifth pitch. … Wong tweeted after the game “All i want to say is i’m sorry #CardinalNation I go out every day playing this game as hard as I can and leaving everything on the field.”

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/gomes-lifts-red-sox-over-cards-4-2-082107393–spt.html
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Jay-Z defends deal with store accused of profiling

27 Oct

NEW YORK (AP) — Jay-Z — under increasing pressure to back out of a collaboration with the luxury store Barneys New York after it was accused of racially profiling two black customers — said Saturday he’s being unfairly “demonized” for just waiting to hear all of the facts.

The rap mogul made his first statement about the controversy in a posting on his website. He has come under fire for remaining silent as news surfaced this week that two young black people said they were profiled by Barneys after they purchased expensive items from their Manhattan store.

An online petition and Twitter messages from fans have been circulating this week, calling on the star to bow out of his upcoming partnership with Barneys for the holiday season, which will have the store selling items by top designers, inspired by Jay-Z, with some of the proceeds going to his charity. He is also working with the store to create its artistic holiday window display.

But Jay-Z — whose real name is Shawn Carter — defended himself, saying that he hasn’t spoken about it because he’s still trying to figure out exactly what happened.

“I move and speak based on facts and not emotion,” the statement said. “I haven’t made any comments because I am waiting on facts and the outcome of a meeting between community leaders and Barneys. Why am I being demonized, denounced and thrown on the cover of a newspaper for not speaking immediately?” he said, referring to local newspaper headlines.

The two Barneys customers, Trayon Christian and Kayla Phillips, said this week they were detained by police after making expensive purchases.

Christian sued Barneys, saying he was accused of fraud after using his debit card to buy a $349 Ferragamo belt in April. Philips filed a notice of claim saying she would sue after she was stopped by detectives outside the store when she bought a $2,500 Celine handbag in February.

As the criticism grew, Barneys said Thursday it had retained a civil rights expert to help review its procedures. The CEO of Barneys, Mark Lee, offered his “sincere regret and deepest apologies.”

Kirsten John Foy, an official with the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, said he would meet with Barneys officials on Tuesday to discuss the racial profiling allegations.

Jay-Z — who rose from a life of crime in Brooklyn to become one of the most heralded rappers and one of entertainment’s biggest superstars — has in the past called for a boycott of labels perceived to be racist, and has become more political in recent years, from speaking out about the killing of black teenager Trayvon Martin to campaigning for President Barack Obama.

Jay-Z said in this case, he’s still trying to find out what happened —which is why he was silent.

“The negligent, erroneous reports and attacks on my character, intentions and the spirit of this collaboration have forced me into a statement I didn’t want to make without the full facts,” he added.

He also dismissed reports that he would profit from the collaboration. He said he’s “not making a dime” from working with Barneys. Instead, his Shawn Carter Foundation, which provides college scholarships to economically challenged students, will get 25 percent of all sales from the collaboration.

“This money is going to help individuals facing socio-economic hardships to help further their education at institutions of higher learning,” he said. “My idea was born out of creativity and charity… not profit.”

He also said that “making a decision prematurely to pull out of this project wouldn’t hurt Barneys or Shawn Carter but all the people that stand a chance at higher education,” he said. “I have been working with my team ever since the situation was brought to my attention to get to the bottom of these incidents and at the same time find a solution that doesn’t harm all those that stand to benefit from this collaboration.”

Jay-Z said he understood what it felt like to be racially profiled — but also didn’t want to jump to unfair conclusions.

“I am against discrimination of any kind but if I make snap judgments, no matter who it’s towards, aren’t I committing the same sin as someone who profiles?” he asked. “I am no stranger to being profiled and I truly empathize with anyone that has been put in that position. Hopefully this brings forth a dialogue to effect real change.”

Earlier Saturday, Sharpton held a rally at his National Action Network headquarters in Harlem, saying black New Yorkers should put shopping at Barneys “on hold” if the retailer’s response is inadequate.

But it is not the only retailer accused of racially profiling its customers.

Some Sharpton supporters who attended Saturday’s rally said they had been profiled in other stores, too. Shane Lee, 51, said he went to the high-end store Bergdorf Goodman to buy shirts last year and the sales staff would not assist him.

“Instead of helping me, they were staring at me,” said Lee, who is black. “I felt so uncomfortable that I just left.”

A Bergdorf Goodman official did not return a call seeking comment Saturday.

On Friday, Rob Brown, a black actor on the HBO series “Treme” said he was stop because of his race while shopping at Macy’s flagship Manhattan store. Brown said in his lawsuit that he was detained nearly an hour by police June 8 after employees contacted authorities about possible credit card fraud.

Macy’s didn’t comment on the litigation but said in a statement it was investigating.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/jay-z-defends-deal-store-accused-profiling-223751712–finance.html
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Dealing With The Diplomatic Damage Of Leaks

26 Oct

This week The Guardian reported that the U.S. tapped German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s private cellphone. Weekend Edition Saturday host Scott Simon speaks with P.J. Crowley, former U.S. assistant secretary of state for public affairs, about the Obama administration’s response to the new NSA leaks.

Source: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=240954495&ft=1&f=1014
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