Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Home foreclosures number is still going up

This is not good for real estate business.

LOS ANGELES - The number of foreclosure filings reported in the U.S. last month more than doubled versus August 2006 and jumped 36 percent from July, a trend that signals many homeowners are increasingly unable to make timely payments on their mortgages or sell their homes amid a national housing slump.

A total of 243,947 foreclosure filings were reported in August, up 115 percent from 113,300 in the same month a year ago, Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac Inc. said Tuesday.

There were 179,599 foreclosure filings reported in July.

Read the entire news here.


Monday, September 17, 2007

War is all about global oil supply--Greenspan

Alan Greenspan admitted that the war is all aobut global oil supply and the ouster of Saddam is crucial for oil security.

Greenspan: Ouster Of Hussein Crucial For Oil Security

Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve chairman, said in an interview that the removal of Saddam Hussein had been "essential" to secure world oil supplies, a point he emphasized to the White House in private conversations before the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Greenspan, who was the country's top voice on monetary policy at the time Bush decided to go to war in Iraq, has refrained from extensive public comment on it until now, but he made the striking comment in a new memoir out today that "the Iraq War is largely about oil." In the interview, he clarified that sentence in his 531-page book, saying that while securing global oil supplies was "not the administration's motive," he had presented the White House with the case for why removing Hussein was important for the global economy.

Read the entire news here.


O.J. Simpson in the News Again for Alleged Robbery

He claimed he just wanted to get his belongings back.

O.J. Simpson Is Charged In Alleged Robbery

Las Vegas police arrested O.J. Simpson yesterday and charged the former football star with six felony counts in connection with an alleged hotel-room robbery, placing Simpson in his most serious legal jeopardy since his acquittal on double murder charges in 1995.

Simpson, 60, was arrested yesterday morning, three days after two sports-memorabilia dealers told police that Simpson and five other men burst into their room at the Palace Station Hotel and Casino, several of them brandishing guns, and seized various mementos, including several items autographed by the NFL Hall of Famer.

Read the entire news from Washington Post.


Friday, August 31, 2007

Five Year Old Kid drives car because the mother is drunk

See this CNN Video about a five year old toddler who drove their car home because the mother is intoxicated.

Kid driver

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Strong Earthquake Strikes Indonesia

An undersea earthquake with a 6.3 magnitude jolted Indonesia's eastern Moluccas chain on Sunday, but there were no immediate reports of any deaths or damage, a meteorological agency official said.

The epicenter of the quake lay in the sea at a depth of 64 miles, and 220 kilometers northwest of the town of Saumlaki in the Moluccas, Setiyono, an analyst with the meteorology and geophysics agency, said.

He said no tsunami warning had been issued.

Source: MSNBC


Saturday, June 30, 2007

Crackdown on Officials with Mistresses

I hope this will be adopted by other countries.

BEIJING (Reuters) - China plans to sack all officials found to have secretly "kept and supported" mistresses, in a move aimed at raising social morals, state media reported on Friday.

The step hardens up previous policy.

"It is a misunderstanding that officials who have mistresses would only be sacked when the situation is serious," the Beijing News quoted a Ministry of Personnel spokesman as saying.

Mistresses and "second wives" are common among government officials and businessmen in China, and Chinese media have said the financial pressures of keeping mistresses have driven some officials to seek money through bribes or abuse of power.

Corrupt officials are a major cause of public outrage in China, and the country's Communist rulers have warned that if graft is not checked it could threaten the party's grip on power.

The ministry said it had studied the issue and found it "necessary to make a clarification and emphasis" on the punishment for officials who supported mistresses.

"The morality of government officials shown in their management or power operation... directly affects the moral level of the whole society," the spokesman was quoted as saying.

"Therefore, officials should set up good examples, and abide by social morality rules."

Last year, a Chinese vice admiral was jailed for life on embezzlement charges after one of his many mistresses blew the whistle on him when he refused to give in to her demand for money.


Thursday, June 28, 2007

Airplane Crashed into a building in Africa

JOHANNESBURG - An Angolan TAAG Boeing 737 crashed in the northern city of M'banza Congo on Thursday, killing at least six people and injuring others, Angola's ANGOP news agency said.

The airplane was carrying 78 passengers and was en route from Luanda to M'Banza Congo, which is in northern Angola near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The agency said the plane lost control upon landing and crashed into a building, destroying it. It said a number of severely injured passengers were taken to hospital for treatment.

Source: MSNBC


Thursday, May 24, 2007

Trade Secrets are Trade Secrets

Trade secrets are trade secrets. Steal it and you will be convicted when caught.

The excerpt of the news:

ATLANTA - A federal judge ignored a former Coca-Cola secretary’s tearful plea for mercy Wednesday and sentenced her to eight years in prison for conspiring to steal trade secrets from the world’s largest beverage maker.

U.S. District Judge J. Owen Forrester told Joya Williams, 42, that he was giving her a longer sentence than recommended by federal prosecutors and sentencing guidelines because, “This is the kind of offense that cannot be tolerated in our society.”

Williams had faced up to 10 years in prison on the single conspiracy charge in a failed scheme to sell Coke’s trade secrets to rival Pepsi for at least $1.5 million.


Monday, April 23, 2007

Boris Yeltsin, 76

Yeltsin died Monday at 76, a Kremlin official announced. The Interfax news agency quoted an unidentified medical source as saying that he died of heart failure.

Like Peter the Great, the 18th-century czar he once mentioned as his model, Yeltsin was no towering democrat. In launching a war against the breakaway southern region of Chechnya in 1994, he was responsible for the violent deaths of more Russian citizens than any Kremlin leader since Joseph Stalin. As president, he tolerated -- even authorized -- the excesses of a system in some ways as corrupt and morally adrift as the one it replaced.


Friday, April 13, 2007

Employers are checking online personal information

This news is for people who are posting personal information online and discussing
their problems in their work in their blogs.

Want a job? Clean up your Web act
By Tim Ferguson, Special to CNET News.com

Employers are increasingly checking out online personal information about candidates when making recruitment decisions.

Net reputations built up through online activities--such as blogging, posting videos to YouTube, or using social networks such as Facebook and MySpace.com--can have a significant effect when applying for a job, according to a report from business social network Viadeo.

According to the research, released March 28, one in five employers finds information about candidates on the Internet, and 59 percent of those said it influences recruitment decisions.

A fourth of human resources decision makers said they had rejected candidates based on personal information found online. Most people, however, remain unaware of the effect their Net reputation can have on their job prospects.


Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Diabetic Mr. Universe Tussled with the Police

Diabetic Mr. Universe suspected to be drunk, tussled withh the police

A reigning Mr. Universe was charged Tuesday with resisting arrest and assault on a police officer after a scuffle at a Redwood City movie theater in which police mistakenly thought the diabetic bodybuilder was drunk as he was slipping into insulin shock.

Doug Burns faces up to a year in county jail if convicted in an incident that has drawn sharp criticism from some diabetes experts who believe officers overreacted to a medical situation.

"Doug is the consummate gentleman," said Jeff Hitchcock, founder of Children With Diabetes, an educational support group that helps families of children with diabetes. "The treatment he received by the police is outrageous."

A Redwood City Police Department spokesman defended the officers.

"It's unfortunate that this event occurred, but I think the officers acted properly in the circumstances that they were faced with," police Capt. Chris Cesena said. "Our personnel were not given enough time to assess Mr. Burn's personal condition."

Officers were called to Century 20 theater in downtown Redwood City at about 7:30 p.m. Sunday after a security guard, believing the disoriented Burns was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, escorted him outside, police said. When two officers arrived, the powerfully built Burns, 43, allegedly pushed one and then assumed a "fighting stance," police said.

One officer used pepper spray in an attempt to subdue Burns but with no effect. Both officers then wrestled Burns to the ground and needed three more officers, who arrived as backup, to handcuff him, police said. During the scuffle, Burns suffered small cuts to his nose and forehead, while one officer received a small cut to his finger and another officer suffered an arm injury and was placed on medical leave, Cesena said.

Burns, a Redwood City father of three, is the 2006-07 Natural Mr. Universe, the winner of a competition that stresses bodybuilding without the use of performance-enhancing drugs. He often speaks publicly about his diabetes to raise awareness of the disease.

He disputed the police version of the incident, saying: "That story is completely out of line."

Burns, diagnosed with diabetes at age 7, said he realized his blood sugar was low shortly after entering the theater. Burns tried to make his way to the snack counter on the second floor but began losing his vision. Burns said he wasn't able to stand properly as a security guard escorted him down the theater escalator.

"The last recollection I have is leaning against the security guard as he's bringing me out and perspiring a lot," Burns said. "To say that I confronted them in a fighting stance? I couldn't even stand up. I couldn't see."

Burns said he remembers nothing outside the theater, and the first time he recalls seeing police officers was as they stood over him while a paramedic treated him.

Prosecutors decided to file the misdemeanor charges against Burns based on the police reports, Chief Deputy District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said. He pointed to a case several years ago in which the district attorney's office charged a man in a fatal car crash but later dropped the charges after medical evidence showed he had been in a diabetic coma at the time.

"As we read the police reports, we're not seeing a similar thing here," Wagstaffe said. "If (Burns) ultimately presents us with information to that effect -- that he was unconscious of what had occurred -- then we will consider it."

Diabetics suffering from low blood sugar levels -- or hypoglycemia -- often become confused and experience blurry or double vision, nervousness, irritability or even aggression, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

"They closely mimic drunkenness," Hitchcock said. "The presumption that someone is drunk when they are behaving that way is a bad assumption."

They can become desperate in their movements as they attempt to get sugar-rich foods while their body is simultaneously shutting down, said Dr. Joseph Prendergast, a veteran Redwood City endocrinologist.

"People get very anxious because they are seeking some help," Prendergast said. "It happens to wives, it happens to kids who have known dad for years, and it also happens at snack food counters in theaters."

Cesena said the officers had no way of knowing Burns was diabetic or slipping into insulin shock until after he was arrested. They did not notice whether Burns had a MedicAlert bracelet or any other indication he was diabetic, he said. Burns said he was not sure whether he had his MedicAlert bracelet on at the time.

After Burns was cuffed, police called medics to treat him for the pepper spray, and he told them he was diabetic and suffering from low blood sugar, Cesena said. Burns was taken to San Mateo Medical Center for treatment. He was cited on the misdemeanors and was released without being booked into jail, police said.

He is scheduled to be arraigned May 2, and prosecutors will not seek to have bail set in the case, Wagstaffe said.


Monday, February 05, 2007

Korean Business Tycoon Convicted for High Profile Corruption

Ordinary people would look for reasons why rich and successful people would embezzle large amount of cash. How are they going to be caught when they control the whole organization?

This news article about Hyundai Motor Co. Chairman Mong-Koo explained the what, the why and what now of the beleaguered business tycoon.

Hyundai Motor Co. Chairman Chung Mong-koo, handed a surprise three-year jail term for high-profile corruption, won't be donning prison garb anytime soon and for now remains in control of the troubled, yet expanding automaker.

Chung, convicted Monday for embezzling the equivalent of more than $100 million in company funds and other charges, plans to appeal the ruling, a process expected to take from six months to two years. He will be free during that time to run the company.

He must use that window of opportunity, analysts say, to reform an organization beset by woes ranging from its authoritarian management structure, chronic labor troubles, and the need to better compete in overseas markets with more harmonious Japanese competitors.

"Mr. Chung has to make the management system change," said Yong Dae-in, an auto industry analyst at Goodmorning Shinhan Securities in Seoul, emphasizing it must become more decentralized and less dependent on him.

The weakness of Hyundai's top-down operating style came into focus in April when Chung was arrested, jailed and grilled by prosecutors for two months before being allowed back into the boardroom following release on bail.

During that time the company, along with affiliate Kia Motors Corp., floundered as decisions related to overseas plants were delayed and problems with its strike-prone labor union festered.

Read the entire story here.


Sunday, January 21, 2007

Malaysian Flooding

Bayi who is from Malaysia sent me these pictures of flooding in his country.

1. Businesses are closed

2. They use banca for means of transportation within the city.

3. Streets are deep in water so only small boats can ferry people.

4. Even the main roads are gone.

5. They're lucky if the water is only knee deep high.

6. Vehicles caught in raging water have to be pushed or towed.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Google Millionaires retiring

When you become millionaire what are you going to do? Work until your retirement age?
Retire and set up a business? Go back to school?

The millionaires that the legendary company Google have decided to cash in their millions and put up their own. This news article from San Francisco Chronicle tells us what the old timers in Google did.

O Googlers, where art thou?
Some employees found instant riches in the Internet search company's initial public offering -- affording them the luxury of pursuing new dreams

Who in their right mind would leave a job at Google Inc., a company legendary for pampering workers with free annual ski trips and gourmet food?

Well, it turns out plenty of people do. And many of them are some of the Web giant's earliest employees.

Extremely wealthy from stock options that soared in value, 100 of Google's first 300 workers have quietly resigned to go to law school, help poor shopkeepers get loans or simply to live the good life. Although hardly a mass exodus, the numbers are adding up, scattering what some employees considered their second families.

For Google, the departures present a new hurdle. Enticing as many old-timers to stay as possible is a priority because, with each farewell party, a piece of the company's institutional knowledge and culture is lost.

"We take a lot of time and care, in particular with our old-timers," said Stacy Sullivan, Google's human resources director. "It's so important that we are paying attention to whether they're being challenged."

What's happened to Google following its blockbuster initial public offering in 2004 echoes several of technology's other titans, such as Yahoo Inc., eBay Inc. and Microsoft Corp. But because of Google's celebrity and generous perks, the question remained whether the pattern would play out again.

Google's initial public offering immediately minted more than 900 millionaires at the company, by one estimate. Even many rank-and-file employees became instantly wealthy. The total has grown over time as its shares have catapulted in value.

Financial freedom gave the former Googlers in this article wide latitude in deciding what to do with their lives. The reasons for leaving are many: Alack of new challenges, ambivalence about the company's growth and a desire for a career change are just a few.

But virtually all of the former Googlers fondly recall helping build what is now the most popular search engine, particular during the early years when they felt like they had a big impact and employees knew all their colleagues' names. Those cheery memories, however, are mixed with flashbacks of late nights at the office, spending Valentine's dinner in the company cafeteria and strife.


Saturday, January 06, 2007

Embryo Bank -bank for designer babies

We have all sorts of banks, thrift banks, commercial banks, blood banks and other banks where an item can be stored and withdrawn. Here comes embryo bank.

Excerpt of the news from Washington Post

'Embryo Bank' Stirs Ethics Fears
Firm Lets Clients Pick Among Fertilized Eggs

A Texas company has started producing batches of ready-made embryos that single women and infertile couples can order after reviewing detailed information about the race, education, appearance, personality and other characteristics of the egg and sperm donors.

The Abraham Center of Life LLC of San Antonio, the first commercial dealer making embryos in advance for unspecified recipients, was created to help make it easier and more affordable for clients to have babies that match their preferences, according to its founder.

"We're just trying to help people have babies," said Jennalee Ryan, who arranged for an egg donor to start medical treatments to produce a second batch of embryos this week. "For me, that's what this is all about: helping make babies."

But the embryo brokerage, which calls itself "the world's first human embryo bank," raises alarm among some fertility experts and bioethicists, who say the service marks another disturbing step toward commercialization of human reproduction and "designer babies."