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by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:22:50 PM EST
France24 - Series of deadly blasts rock Bangkok
AFP - A series of grenade attacks rocked central Bangkok on Thursday, killing one person and injuring more than 50, including foreigners, amid a tense standoff between groups of rival protesters.
Five grenades were fired into a crowd in the capital's business district, said army spokesman Sunsern Kaewkumnerd, where pro-government demonstrators were facing off with their rival "Red Shirts".
One Thai woman died, according to a local hospital, after the grenades hit the mass of pro-government supporters. Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva immediately called an emergency meeting with security officials.
Ambulances rushed to the scene to load up bloodied victims after the blasts sent relaxed and cheerful pro-government crowds fleeing from the area, home to dozens of corporate towers and a notorious red-light district.
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:37:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The army doesn't plan to break up the protest at night because it would be too dangerous, army spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd told reporters after the blast. Earlier he warned protesters that "time is running out" and said the military was waiting for "an appropriate time" to reclaim the area.

"We will try to make sure the area is secure so nobody can launch any more grenades," government spokesman Panitan Wattanayagorn said by phone. "This is not a normal peaceful protest."

About 14,000 people rallied in the demonstration site, where they set up showers next to the Four Seasons Hotel and slept under advertisements for Prada and Louis Vuitton. The protesters, who are demanding new elections, have cordoned off an area roughly the size of New York's Central Park with bamboo barricades.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.
by Cat on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 08:57:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - India urban size to double, could face 'chaos': report

AFP - India's city population will nearly double to close to 600 million people by 2030, requiring huge investment to avoid urban "chaos", a report by global consultancy McKinsey warned Thursday.

India must invest 1.2 trillion dollars for core urban infrastructure in its cities over the next 20 years, equivalent to 134 dollars per capita a year, the report said -- almost eight times current spending in per capita terms.

"The need for change is urgent. India's current approach to urbanization is likely to result in urban gridlock and chaos," said Ireena Vittal, one of the report's authors

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:40:22 PM EST
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France24 - In Haiti, schools lure back students with a free daily meal

AFP - The meal doesn't look like much, rice, a few vegetables and a little bit of meat, but for the Haitian school children who receive it for free, it is reason enough to come to class.

By 10:30 am on a Wednesday, the smell of chicken stock wafts through the Rosalie Javoukey school, located in a neighborhood of Haiti's devastated capital Port-au-Prince.

In the shade of a three-story building scheduled for demolition, women bustle about, doling food onto metal and plastic plates on huge tables set up in between white Unicef tents.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:40:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - PM certain Aqaba rockets were not fired from Jordinian soil

AFP - Two military-grade rockets struck Jordan early on Thursday, one slamming into an empty warehouse in Aqaba and the other splashing into the Red Sea near the Israeli border, a security official said.

"The preliminary investigation determined that the explosion in the (Red Sea) port of Aqaba on Thursday morning was due to a Katyusha rocket," the security official said, citing sources close to investigators.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:45:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - Seoul believes North Korea torpedoed navy ship

AFP - South Korea's military believes that a North Korean submarine launched a torpedo attack to sink a South Korean warship last month near their disputed sea border, the Yonhap news agency said Thursday.

The assessment was reported to the office of President Lee Myung-Bak and the defence ministry immediately after the ship sank last month, an unnamed senior military source told Yonhap.

"It's our military intelligence's assessment that North Korean submarines attacked the ship with a heavy torpedo," the source said, adding that the subs were armed with torpedoes with 200-kilogram (440-pound) warheads.

by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:46:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
France24 - US warns Syria after suspected missile transfer to Hezbollah
REUTERS - US President Barack Obama's administration has warned that "all options" are on the table if Syria supplied Scud missiles to Hezbollah but defended its pursuit of dialogue with Damascus.
Israel believes that Syria has supplied Hezbollah with the ballistic missiles, which could dramatically increase the Lebanese Shiite militia's ability to attack the Jewish state.
Jeffrey Feltman, the assistant secretary of state for the Middle East, said Wednesday the United States would have "really, really serious concern" if Syria had delivered such high-grade weapons to Hezbollah.
by In Wales (inwales aaat eurotrib.com) on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 12:47:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Strike at University of Puerto Rico...
This may likely be of little or no interest to anybody but me.  However, with our local police riot squad deployed and the students just finished decreeing a continuation of what was supposed to have been a 48 hour stoppage, the stage is set for anything to happen.  If there is a bloody clash, this will become international news (in which case you can say you first learned of it from yours truly):

English Facebook link (unfortunately not updated)

Unknown blog note (in English but somewhat alarmist)

The most reliable and up-to-date source is this (unfortunately in Spanish)

"Beware of the man who does not talk, and the dog that does not bark." Cheyenne

by maracatu on Thu Apr 22nd, 2010 at 07:40:00 PM EST
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Don't stop writing.

On a planet where a world war can conflagrate when a primpy prince of a 3rd rate country gets killed by a lone-anarchist and millions of people die in trenches...and all this just over 90 years ago...

...it is important to be able to gather as much data as possible.

Good luck. Have clean bandages and good lawyers available.

Never underestimate their intelligence, always underestimate their knowledge.

Frank Delaney ~ Ireland

by siegestate (siegestate or beyondwarispeace.com) on Fri Apr 23rd, 2010 at 08:22:53 AM EST
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Exclusive: WellPoint routinely targets breast cancer patients | Reuters

(Reuters) - Shortly after they were diagnosed with breast cancer, each of the women learned that her health insurance had been canceled. There was Yenny Hsu, who lived and worked in Los Angeles. And there was Patricia Reilling, a successful art gallery owner and interior designer from Louisville, Kentucky.

U.S.  |  Health  |  Healthcare Reform

Neither of these women knew about the other. But besides their similar narratives, they had something else in common: Their health insurance carriers were subsidiaries of WellPoint, which has 33.7 million policyholders -- more than any other health insurance company in the United States.

The women paid their premiums on time. Before they fell ill, neither had any problems with their insurance. Initially, they believed their policies had been canceled by mistake.

They had no idea that WellPoint was using a computer algorithm that automatically targeted them and every other policyholder recently diagnosed with breast cancer. The software triggered an immediate fraud investigation, as the company searched for some pretext to drop their policies, according to government regulators and investigators.

Once the women were singled out, they say, the insurer then canceled their policies based on either erroneous or flimsy information. WellPoint declined to comment on the women's specific cases without a signed waiver from them, citing privacy laws.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Apr 23rd, 2010 at 05:28:11 AM EST
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That's uncannily and almost unexpectedly like - a death panel.
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Apr 23rd, 2010 at 08:08:15 AM EST
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but its privatised so its ok,

dont yew kno nuffink?

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.

by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Fri Apr 23rd, 2010 at 08:14:19 AM EST
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re: "The software triggered an immediate fraud investigation"

Insurance production and marketing is regluated in and by each of the several states. Definitions of "fraud" as pertains to enforceability of the contract differentiate obligations of the counterparties, issuer and insured. In some respects the Patient Protection and Affordability Act seeks to unify formally states' statutes by affirming federal authority and establishing minimum standards of liability according to USC.

In general,

Insured may not...
knowingly present an insurer documentation or communication in support of a claim that contains false or misleading information concerning a matter material to a claim or an insurance application

Issuer may not...
misrepresent pertinent facts or policy provisions that relate to a claim or coverage at issue or in dispute. Fraudulent acts are

  • knowingly fail to return to an insured money or premiums paid for a policy not ultimately provided
  • knowingly make a false statement in reference to any insurance application
  • willfully collect as an insurance premium a sum in excess of the premium applicable to the insurance
  • misappropriate or withhold unreasonably funds received that represent premiums or benefits
  • act as an insurance producer, broker, or adjuster without appropriate license
  • place insurance with an insurer not regulated by the state
  • refuse an order by a state commissioner to produce for examination all policies and other documentation evidencing the insurance and premium amounts paid

"Unfair discrimination" is illegal but not necessarily a fraudulent act: It is illegal to discriminate unfairly between individuals of the same class and life expectancy for the rates charged, dividends, other benefits payable, and any other condition of life insurance or life annuity contract.

To be "fair," issuer's treatment of one is applicable to all individuals of the same class and life expectancy.


Diversity is the key to economic and political evolution.

by Cat on Fri Apr 23rd, 2010 at 09:32:57 AM EST
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