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Canadian Man Flashes Scanned Passport on iPad to Gain Entry to U.S.

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© The Canadian Press/Graham Hughes
Martin Reisch holds up his iPad displaying his passport in Montreal, Tuesday, January 03, 2012. Mr. Reisch was allowed entry into the United States using a scanned copy of his passport on his iPad.
A Canadian man who forgot his passport at home discovered an unusual tool to help him get through U.S. Customs - his iPad.

Martin Reisch says a border officer let him cross into the United States from Quebec after he presented a scanned copy of his passport on the computer tablet and his driver's licence.

Reisch's entrance into the U.S. without a mandatory, hard copy travel document hints how, in some cases, stricter rules at the thickened American border may still have some flexibility in actual practice.

Canadians have had to present more than just a regular driver's licence at U.S. Customs for the last couple of years.

Reisch said he was about a half-an-hour drive from the Vermont border last week when he realized he had forgotten his passport at home.

He quickly remembered that a scanned copy of the document was stored on his iPad, and instead of turning his car around for the two-hour drive home, he decided to give it a shot.

Pistol

US: Texas Police Kill Armed Eighth Grader in School


A male 15-year-old student was shot and killed by Texas police today when he "brandished" a weapon in the main hallway of his school.

At around 8 a.m., school administrators from Cummings Middle School in Brownsville called 911 and the school went into lockdown.

The Brownsville Police Department responded immediately and "the student engaged the officers and was shot," according to a statement from the Brownsville Independent School District.

Light Saber

US: Montanans Move To Recall Congressional Delegation

Montana residents William Crain, an artist and Stewart Rhodes, an attorney, have launched a petition to recall the state's congressional delegation, Sen. Max Baucus (D), Sen. Jonathan Tester (D) and Rep. Denny Reberg (R) over their vote for the National Defense Authorization Act that explicitly authorized the indefinite detention of terrorism suspects, including American citizens. Montana is one of nine states that has provisions to recall its elected federal officials. Under the Montana Recall Act all state officials in Montana are subject to recall for physical or mental lack of fitness, incompetence, violation of the oath of office, official misconduct, or conviction of a felony offense. The Montana petitions (there is one for each of the three), states the following "reason for recall":

Book

US: Charlton, Massachusetts Library Sends Police To Collect Overdue Books From 5-Year-Old

books
© WBZ-TV
Shannon Benoit reads a book to daughter Hailey.

A Charlton mom says her local library crossed the line when they sent police to collect her daughter's overdue library books.

Her mom says the 5-year-old girl was so afraid that she burst into tears.

Charlton Police Sergeant Dan Dowd stopped by the home of Shannon Benoit to let her know that her daughter had two books several months overdue which needed to be returned or paid for.

V

US, New York: Grand Central Latest Occupy Wall Street Destination; Cops Bust Three in Flash Mob Protesting Defense Act

Obama's signing of National Defense Act target of latest demonstation

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© Mary Altafeer/The Associated Press
Occupy Wall Street activists are dispersed among the rush hour commuters as they form a flash mob at New York's Grand Central, Tuesday.
Three Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested and two others given summonses after converging on Grand Central terminal Tuesday, an MTA spokeswoman said.

The group called a day of action, slamming President Obama's "treasonous" signing of the National Defense Authorization Act on New Year's Eve, according to an OWS spokesman.

A video uploaded to YouTube and posted on Twitter shows the rush hour flash mob.

Demonstrator Lauren DiGioia, 26, is seen being hauled off by four MTA police officers.

DiGioia was collared for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, MTA spokeswoman Marjorie Anders said.

Stormtrooper

US: New York City Police Arrest Another 68 Occupy Wall Street Protesters

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© The Associated Press
Relentless: Occupy Wall Street protesters and New York Police clash over barricades at Zuccotti Park in Manhattan on New Year's Eve
On New Year's Eve New York City police arrested dozens of people, including passersby, during an Occupy Wall Street demonstration in Manhattan.

The arrests came after several hundred protesters assembled in Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan to protest the gross social inequality in the US and the police-state-like handling of their encampment, which was disbanded on the orders New York's billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg on November 15.

Protesters had occupied the small public area in Manhattan's financial district on September 17 to draw attention to the domination of the super-rich in American political and social life.

The occupation and the numerous planned and spontaneous marches that it sponsored were met by escalating police harassment over the course of the next two months. This included resurrecting an old an unused law against covering one's face in public, mass arrests - including over 700 on the Brooklyn Bridge on October 1 - gratuitous pepper spraying, routine kettling of protesters, and the use of special crowd dispersal equipment.

Handcuffs

US: Man Arrested in New York Islamic Center Firebomb Attack

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© The Associated Press
Ray Lazier Lengend, accused of involvement with hurling Molotov cocktails at 5 New York-area sites on New Year's Day, is led out of a police precinct.
A man who confessed to a string of New Year's Day arson attacks at an Islamic cultural center and four other sites where he had personal grievances was arrested on a hate crime charge, police said.

Ray Lazier Lengend, a 40-year-old of Guyanese descent, hurled crude firebombs at the Islamic center in part because he wasn't allowed to use its bathrooms, a law enforcement official said.

Lengend was tracked through a stolen car with Virginia license plates believed to be at the scene of at least two of the attacks Sunday evening on a convenience store, three homes and the cultural center, police said. He was arrested Tuesday on charges including one count of arson as a hate crime, four counts of arson and five counts of criminal possession of a weapon, they said.

Lengend, who lives in Queens, was taken to a hospital for a psychiatric examination Tuesday night. He remained in custody and couldn't be reached for comment. A man who answered a telephone call at Lengend's home said he would not give out any information over the phone and hung up. There was no information on whether Lengend had a lawyer.

Info

Mexican Grand Warlock Predicts Obama Loss in 2012

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© Agence France-Presse
Antonio Vazquez, aka "Brujo Mayor" (Great Witch), the self-appointed Grand Warlock of Mexico, shows cards during a press conference where he spoke of his predictions for 2012, in Mexico City. Mexico's Grand Warlock predicted US President Barack Obama would fail to win re-election and two more Latin American leaders would be diagnosed with cancer, in a traditional New Year's forecast Tuesday.
Mexico's Grand Warlock predicted US President Barack Obama would fail to win re-election and two more Latin American leaders would be diagnosed with cancer, in a traditional New Year's forecast Tuesday.

The Grand Warlock, or "Brujo Mayor" in Spanish, leads a Mexican tradition of "brujeria" or sorcery centered in the southeastern city of Catemaco.

The Grand Warlock, also known as Antonio Vazquez, said that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who claims to have beaten an unspecified cancer, would have a "terrible relapse."

Argentina's President Cristina Kirchner, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, former Brazilian leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and Paraguay's Fernando Lugo have been diagnosed with cancer in recent years.

Chavez suggested last month that the spate of cancer among leftist leaders could be a US plot.

Syringe

Anger Over Secret Drug Trials on Indian Children

Indian medical assistant administers an insulin shot
© AFP
An Indian medical assistant administers an insulin shot to a diabetes patient.
Indian activists have reacted angrily after 12 doctors were fined less than $100 each for conducting secret drug trials on children and patients with learning disabilities.

The Madhya Pradesh state government said the tests had not been cleared by health authorities, and it added that the doctors refused to disclose further details citing patient confidentiality laws.

Anand Rai, a doctor who acted as a whistleblower in the case, told AFP on Tuesday he was angry and frustrated that the scale of the punishment would not deter future illegal trials.

"The Madhya Pradesh government has now slapped a nominal 5,000-rupee ($94) penalty on the 12 government doctors who were involved in the bizarre case," he said. "The penalty was for their failure to inform about the trials."

Alarm Clock

Mayan Calendar Predicts Doomsday in 2012. Or Not


It sure is a good thing that the Mayan calendar says the world is going to end this year -- because at least, after the apocalypse comes on Dec. 21, you won't have to read another word about it.

Or maybe you will. The beginning of 2012 has brought a new flurry of reassurances that the Maya never did predict anything would go wrong this year, and that even if they had, we're probably misreading their calendar anyhow.

"There's no real prophesy that says this is going to be the end of the world," said Christopher Powell, an archeologist who studies Mayan culture, "not from the Mayan ruins, anyway."

At Yahoo News, writer Lisa Hix quoted Bruce Love of the Archaeological Institute of America: "Whatever the significance of the date is, it is significance we are putting on it; it's not the significance the Maya are putting on it. It's not coming from anywhere in the literature or in the Mayan hieroglyphic writing."