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Muslim group pleads for FBI help after family’s home hit with firebomb

The Center for American Islamic Relations (CAIR) issued its second call for a federal investigation on Thursday into the “possible bias motive” of whoever threw a firebomb at a Florida Muslim family’s home in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Nobody was hurt in the incident due to the unknown…

Stephen Baldwin says politics too nasty and then accuses Obama of ‘pimping’

Conservative actor Stephen Baldwin on Thursday complained that politics had become too divisive and extreme, but then accused President Barack Obama “pimping” to pass health care reform. During an interview on CNN, Baldwin reflected on a recent shooting at the Family Research Council headquarters and called for “common-sense, regular-Joe philosophy.”…

UGA student paper staff walk after faculty memo forbids ‘Liable’

The student editor-in-chief and most of the student staff of the University of Georgia’s The Red and Black newspaper resigned en masse on Wednesday, contending that control of the paper was being taken away from students and placed in the hands of non-students. In a statement published by Red and…

Australia winemakers celebrate best vintage in two decades

After years of heatwaves, bush fires and heavy rain, Australia’s wine industry is about to benefit from the best growing conditions for grapes in two decades, experts say. James Halliday, one of the country’s top wine writers, says the weather has been “nigh-on perfect” in South Australia, Victoria and Western…

Judge: U.S. must present evidence against Kim Dotcom before extradition

A New Zealand judge on Thursday upheld a lower court’s decision to give MegaUpload creator Kim Dotcom access to the U.S. government’s evidence against him, enabling the man accused of running the largest criminal copyright operation in history to mount a proper defense at an extradition hearing set for March.…

Hong Kong sex workers complain that police officers push for free services

In a Hong Kong tower block prostitutes in one-room brothels sell themselves for as little as US $40 a time and are often exploited by triad gangsters and abusive clients. But an increasing number of sex workers, particularly migrants from mainland China, are complaining about the behaviour of the police supposed to enforce…

Global demand for gold falls to lowest level in two years

Global demand for gold has fallen to its lowest level in two years owing to less buying in the main markets of India and China, despite rising demand from central banks, the World Gold Council said Thursday. Worldwide demand fell 7.0 percent year-on-year in the second quarter of 2012, down…

Mind over matter: Researchers find karate chop power lies in the brain

Brain power, not brute strength, may explain how karate experts can break bricks with a bare-handed strike, according to scientists who say years of martial arts training alter the organ’s wiring. Researchers in Britain compared the short-range punches of a dozen karate masters to those of 12 physically fit novices…

LGBT rights activist charged with shooting Family Research Council guard

A gay rights activist has been charged with shooting and trying to kill a security guard at the Washington headquarters of a Christian conservative organization, judicial officials said Thursday. Floyd Lee Corkins, a former volunteer with gay advocacy group “The DC Center for the LGBT Community,” faces up to 40…

Romney scolds ‘small minded’ people asking for his tax returns

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Thursday insisted that he had paid more than 13 percent of his income in taxes — or more if donations to the Mormon church are included — over the last 10 years, and accused the people who want to see his returns of…

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