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Daughter of late actor Paul Walker sues Porsche over fatal crash

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The daughter of late actor Paul Walker, who died in the fiery crash of a Porsche sports car in California two years ago, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the car company in Los Angeles on Monday, court records show.

Meadow Walker claimed in the complaint that the automaker skimped on safety features for the vehicle, which could have either prevented the crash entirely or at least kept Walker alive.

Paul Walker was a passenger in the 2005 Porsche Carrera GT driven by Roger Rodas, who lost control of the vehicle before it careened into trees and a utility pole in Santa Clarita, northwest of Los Angeles, killing both men in November 2013.

The suit said Porsche AG knew the car model had a “history of instability and control issues” and added that the seat belts were designed such that in a crash, the shoulder belt anchor would be pulled along with the rear engine compartment while the seat anchor would remain in place.

“This snapped Walker’s torso back with thousands of pounds of force, thereby breaking his ribs and pelvis, flattening his seat and trapping him in a supine position, where he remained alive until the vehicle erupted into flames one minute and twenty seconds later,” the filing said.

“Absent these defects in the Porsche Carrera GT, Paul Walker would be alive today,” the complaint added, citing the seat belt design and other issues.

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Porsche could not be immediately reached for comment on Monday. But attorneys for the German car company said in April that Rodas was to blame for the crash following a lawsuit filed by his widow against the company’s North American unit last year.

Attorneys for the company had then denied that the car had any defects.

Walker’s death at the age of 40 led to a temporary halt in production of “Fast & Furious 7”, the latest movie in the successful series about illegal street racing that helped popularize his career.

The Los Angeles Times has reported that the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol found that unsafe speeds were to blame for the crash, not mechanical problems. The newspaper said investigators made the determination after consulting with technicians from Porsche.

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How Teach for America evolved into an arm of the charter school movement

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When the Walton Family Foundation announced in 2013 that it was donating $20 million to Teach For America to recruit and train nearly 4,000 teachers for low-income schools, its press release did not reveal the unusual terms for the grant.

Documents obtained by ProPublica show that the foundation, a staunch supporter of school choice and Teach For America’s largest private funder, was paying $4,000 for every teacher placed in a traditional public school — and $6,000 for every one placed in a charter school. The two-year grant was directed at nine cities where charter schools were sprouting up, including New Orleans; Memphis, Tennessee; and Los Angeles.

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Quantum physics experiment shows Heisenberg was right about uncertainty — in a certain sense

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The word uncertainty is used a lot in quantum mechanics. One school of thought is that this means there’s something out there in the world that we are uncertain about. But most physicists believe nature itself is uncertain.

Intrinsic uncertainty was central to the way German physicist Werner Heisenberg, one of the originators of modern quantum mechanics, presented the theory.

He put forward the Uncertainty Principle that showed we can never know all the properties of a particle at the same time.

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Why do conservatives hate Oberlin College so much?

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When I was an undergraduate at Oberlin in the mid-Aughts, there was a student in my class year who was obsessed with 19th-century British Royal Naval culture. Every Friday evening, he would host a sing-along in a dorm lounge, for which he would bring xeroxes of historical sea shanty lyrics and pass them around so that we could sing along, waving our glasses of “grog.” This was a semi-established event — he had distributed flyers around campus advertising the weekly British Royal Naval sea-shanty singalong and grog-drinking event, which would extend late into the night. Though he was not a resident of the dorm where it took place, he was welcomed into the lounge by its members, and became a fixture of sorts.Like many well-endowed liberal arts schools in rural areas, Oberlin College functions as a sort of de facto social welfare state, and is designed to encourage and cultivate one’s passions, even if they are not strictly academic. Thus, after writing up a proposal for the student-run activities board, the same student, the British Royal Navy culture guy, was able to plan, organize and execute a ticketed Royal Naval Ball, held in the atrium of the science center. The event featured 20 dishes of authentic British era-appropriate cuisine, cooked by student chefs, several courses of wine and port, and a violinist present to play period-specific music. The whole affair culminated with a traditional, British partner line dance — its sole inauthenticity the fact that we didn’t pay attention to our dance partners’ genders the way the Brits would have.
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