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India scrambles to avoid Olympic ban for corruption

India’s sports chiefs began last-ditch efforts to prevent the country from being suspended from the Olympic movement, but stuck to their stand of electing tainted officials. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) executive board, which meets in Lausanne on December 4 and 5, will decide if India should be suspended for…

Tough talk, no answers as U.S. ‘fiscal cliff’ looms

A sense of deja vu gripped Washington Monday as Democrats and Republicans locked in who-blinks-first brinkmanship over taxes and spending, with pundits warning of economic chaos unless a deal is struck. The White House will not budge on tax hikes and Republicans call the president’s opening gambit ridiculous, but without…

Women sidelined in family films and primetime TV, says study

A study of top-grossing family films, prime-time TV shows and children’s TV shows showed the persisting gender gaps in entertainment media, according to a study conducted by researchers at the University of Southern California and published by the Geena Davis Institute on Gender and Media, reported Mother Jones. They broke…

Anti-Nazi protest in Hungary after politician calls for screening Jews

Thousands of anti-Nazi protestors attended a rally in Budapest after a Hungarian politician suggested that Jews should be screened because they pose a security threat, reported the Associated Press. Martin Gyongyosi, vice-chair of the foreign affairs committee in Hungary’s legislature, said the government needed “to assess … how many people…

Mexico’s new prez signs five-point pact with opposition parties

A day after taking office, President Enrique Pena Nieto signed a pact with rivals Sunday to strengthen democracy, in what could be a bold break with his party’s bad old days. The “Pact for Mexico” was agreed after hard bargaining among Pena Nieto’s Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), the conservative National…

Biogas created by waste fuels Nepal’s tree regrowth

While forests in Nepal have been shrinking for years, between 2007 and 2010 trees in the South Asian country of 27 million inhabitants began to grow again, reported Al Jazeera English. Biogas has been credited with the shift, as roughly 250,000 Nepalese now use the fuel. Biogas is created by…

Israel withholds tax revenue from Palestinians after UN move

After Palestine’s successful bid to become a non-member observer of the Untied Nations, Israel is withholding $120 million in tax revenue it collected for the Palestinian Authority, reported Newsy. Israel is claiming it will use the money to pay for Palestinian debt to the country, but now the Palestinian Authority…

Artificial brain passes basic IQ test

An artificial brain created by neuroscientists at the Unviersity of Waterloo in Canada can pass a basic IQ test according to researchers, reported ExtremeTech. The Semantic Pointer Architecture Unified Network — SPAUN — contains 2.5 million simulated neurons. It can complete eight different tasks, and an attached arm can even…

As ban nears, Calif. bear hunters take final trips with dogs

The sun is up, first rays streaming through the canopy, and the two hunters pause to inspect tracks – big, dusty imprints with five toes – on the forest floor. They move on, boots crunching twigs as they climb a ridge. “What you reckon the chances we’ll get one?” asks…

Harris-Perry guest: ‘Underlying civil war’ will ‘break out’ among GOP in 2016

On MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry on Sunday, the host “begged for forgiveness” for already beginning speculation on the 2016 GOP race for president as her roundtable of guests speculated on which Republicans would take a shot at the open seat. Harris-Perry threw out a range of possibilities, from second-timers like Rick…

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