четверг, 15 марта 2012 г.

US consumer spending dips, savings rate surges

Frugal U.S. consumers trimmed spending in April _ although by less than expected _ as rising unemployment kept pocketbooks in check and motivated Americans to save.

With income growth far outpacing spending, Americans' personal savings rate zoomed to 5.7 percent, the highest since February 1995, the Commerce Department reported Monday.

Consumer spending dipped 0.1 percent in April. That was slightly less than the 0.2 percent reduction economists were expecting, although it marked the second straight month that consumers cut back. The pullback came after a burst of buying at the start of the year as shoppers took advantage of deeply discounted merchandise …

Steps to better hoofing

Who else but a woman could dance backward while wearing highheels? That's how current Texas Gov. Ann Richards began her speechat the 1988 Democratic National Convention. Apparently she's nevergotten a load of Prince, but her comment is well-taken. There'smore to the art of pas de deux than dancing backward.

Our expert panel came up with these tips to help you show offon the dance floor:

1. "When doing the waltz, a gentleman should always lightlycradle his partner's waist with one hand. With his other hand, heshould gently press the palm of one hand into hers. There's nogroping going on. Not on the dance floor anyway." (Leslie Dodson)

2. "Ladies …

NY agency admits errors in underweight tot's death

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City children's welfare agency says its involvement in the case of a 4-year-old girl who was severely underweight when she died last month was woefully inadequate.

The Administration for Children's Services released its preliminary report Tuesday in the case of Marchella Pierce. The report says Marchella weighed 18 pounds when she died Sept. 2 and …

Fan malfunction may have sparked Pa. forge fire

Fire officials in western Pennsylvania say a malfunctioning fan may have been responsible for the blaze that destroyed a historic metal forge that made ashtrays for the ill-fated German airship the Hindenburg.

Fire chief Jeff Badger of the Grove City Volunteer Fire Department says the blaze started at about 1:30 p.m. Saturday in the workshop at the Wendell August Forge, where …

среда, 14 марта 2012 г.

Melvin I. Klein

Melvin I. Klein, 72, retired owner of a West Fullerton printingcompany, died Sunday in St. Francis Hospital, Evanston.

The Skokie resident owned Klein Printing, 3035 W. Fullerton,before retiring five years ago. His son Ralph is president of thecompany, which specializes in printing for charitable organizations.

Mr. Klein was born in the Albany Park area. He graduated fromVon Steuben High School and attended college for two years beforeWorld War II began.

While serving as an Army officer during the war, he oversaw thebuilding of the first Allied bridge across the Rhine River. For hiswork, he was given the Silver Star.

After his discharge, Mr. …

Four black musicians featured prominently

Four black musicians were simultaneously in the spotlight in recent days -- two with the Boston Lyric Opera and two with the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra.

The freshest news came in the Opera's production of Rossini's popular "Barber of Seville," which enjoyed a seven-performance run at the Shubert Theatre. Here the Count Almaviva eventually wins the hand of Rosina, the ward of the over-protective Dr. Bartolo, who raises one obstacle after another.

The role of the Count was entrusted to black tenor Lawrence Brownlee, making his Boston debut. It was easy to understand why he won the 2001 Metropolitan Opera National Auditions.

Though he is of short stature, his voice is …

English Football Results

Results Sunday in English football (home teams listed first):

Premier League

Portsmouth 2, Tottenham 0

Greear will challenge Webster for court seat

Dan Greear, the Republican lawyer who nearly unseated AttorneyGeneral Darrell McGraw, announced Thursday he will challengeDemocrat Carrie Webster for her new spot on the Kanawha CountyCircuit Court.

Webster, whom Gov. Joe Manchin on Wednesday named to replaceJudge Irene Berger on the court, has not yet taken her seat on thebench. Berger left last month for a lifetime seat on a federaldistrict court. Webster will have to run in 2010 to keep the seatand fill the remainder of Berger's unexpired term.

In an announcement of his intention to run, Greear said Webster,one of Kanawha County's representatives in the state House ofDelegates and the current chairwoman of the …

Mental Health Crisis Strains New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS - Mental health problems soared after Hurricane Katrina, just as the city's ability to handle them plummeted, creating a crisis so acute that police officers say they take some disturbed people to a destination of last resort - jail.

Because of the storm damage, only two of New Orleans' 11 hospitals are fully functioning. What's more, one of the closed facilities is the sprawling Charity Hospital, which police officers had relied on to drop off people at any hour.

"You knew they were safe. You knew they would get the care they needed. You don't know either of those things now," said James Arey, a psychologist who commands the police crisis negotiation team. …

Bilodeau takes dual moguls, Kearney wins women's

Alexandre Bilodeau capped a perfect weekend by winning the men's dual moguls, and Hannah Kearney topped the women's event at a World Cup freestyle meet on Saturday,

Bilodeau, who led a Canadian podium sweep in the individual moguls Friday, beat Guilbaut Colas of France in the men's final to close in on the moguls title.

It was the third straight win in moguls _ individual or dual _ for the 21-year-old Bilodeau, who won another World Cup event last weekend at West Vancouver, British Columbia.

Maxime Gingras, another Canadian, beat Sho Kashima of the United States for third place.

With the win, Bilodeau moved to 590 points atop the …

Scoping it out: The observation deck is now open

Flipping through the news pages, clicking through the channels,taking on the jerks and looking at life's quirks:

Linda MacLennan is a sparkling presence on the Channel 2 news at10 p.m., but I wish she would learn to drop that Canadian way ofpronouncing the "ou" sound.

Every time she says "The `Soath' Side of Chicago," I cringe.

All right Linda, what's the sound you make when you stub yourtoe - it's not "oach," it's "ouch," right?

So, whenever you have to say "south" or "about," just think ofstubbing your toe.

If those kids on the ABC-TV show "Head of the Class" are sosmart, how come they can't get out of high school?

Here's a …

Bush: Terror War 'Calling of Generation'

WASHINGTON - Five years after the worst terror attack in U.S. history, President Bush said Monday night the war against terrorism is "the calling of our generation" and urged Americans to put aside differences and fight to victory.

"America did not ask for this war, and every American wishes it were over," Bush said. "The war is not over - and it will not be over until either we or the extremists emerge victorious."

Bush, in a prime time address from the Oval Office, staunchly defended the war in Iraq even though he acknowledged that Saddam Hussein was not responsible for the 9/11 attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.

He said Saddam's regime, while lacking …

Nepal pro-monarchy party protests in capital city

Thousands of supporters of Nepal's deposed king blocked the main government offices in the capital city and clashed with police Tuesday to demand a referendum on restoring the monarchy and the country's status as a Hindu state.

Supporters of National Democratic Party Nepal, the only group to openly support the monarchy, gathered in the heart of Katmandu and blocked roads leading to Singhadurbar, the complex that houses key government offices including the prime minister's office.

The supporters briefly scuffled with police who were trying to remove them from the area where protests are banned by the government. No major injuries were reported in the scuffle.

Katmandu Police Chief Ganesh Chetri said police have detained a few protesters but did not give more details.

Bharat Rayamajhi, a spokesman for the party, claimed nearly 200 supporters have been detained and several were injured in the scuffle with police.

The party had enforced a general strike in Katmandu on Monday that shut down transportation, schools and markets.

It was the first time the royalist party has been able to organize a general strike. It has maintained a low profile since the centuries-old monarchy was abolished in 2008 and the king dethroned. Nepal was also declared a secular state at the same time.

Pro-democracy protests in 2006 forced then-King Gyanendra to give up his authoritarian rule and restore democracy. The king was stripped of power and Nepal was declared a republic two years later.

Nepal still suffers from political instability nearly four years later. A new constitution is supposed to be written by May 2010, but the main political parties are struggling to agree on a new document.

Betancourt's ex is new French envoy to Costa Rica

The ex-husband of former guerrilla-held hostage Ingrid Betancourt is France's new ambassador to Costa Rica.

Fabrice Delloye campaigned for his ex-wife's release during the six years she was held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC.

A dual French-Colombian citizen, Betancourt was running for Colombia's presidency when she was captured. She was freed in July when military agents posing as aid workers helicoptered 15 hostages to freedom without a shot being fired.

Delloye and Betancourt were married from 1981 to 1990 and have two children.

Delloye presented his credentials to Costa Rica's government Thursday. He has held diplomatic posts in Colombia, Ecuador, the Dominican Republic and Canada.

вторник, 13 марта 2012 г.

Clinton to end campaign Saturday at noon

Hillary Rodham Clinton will end her presidential campaign Saturday at an event in Washington.

She will thank supporters and formally endorse rival Barack Obama, who clinched the nomination on Tuesday.

The campaign said in a statement Friday that the event will take place at noon at the National Building Museum.

The former first lady is expected to urge Democrats to unite behind Obama and help him defeat Republican John McCain in November.

Clinton and Obama met privately at the home of California Sen. Dianne Feinstein Thursday night to discuss the campaign going forward.

All England Club disputes Dokic

WIMBLEDON, England - Jelena Dokic ripped Wimbledon officials lastweek, claiming she had to take a taxi to the courts when thetournament failed to pick her up at her hotel.

"If you can't organize something like that, you can't run atournament," she said.

The Yugoslav tennis player said she arrived just minutes beforeher match on Saturday, a victory over Barbara Schett.

Dokic lost to Lindsay Davenport in a fourth-round match Monday.

Wimbledon officials on Tuesday disputed her story.

"After our investigation, we conclude there is no record of herhaving made a booking," All England Club chief executive ChrisGorringe said.

The club also said Dokic was on the grounds just minutes afterher noon practice time and was photographed by a fan more than anhour before her match.

An All England Club spokesman said the club would not take actionagainst the 18-year-old Yugoslav.

"It was decided the club would not make a deal of it," clubspokesman Johnny Perkins said.

Dokic and her father, Damir, have been surrounded by controversythe last several years.

* n n

BAD TENNIS: British tennis is so bad that the government isstepping in with plans to improve things.

Fred Perry in 1936 is the last British man to win Wimbledon, andthe last woman champion was Virginia Wade in 1977. Tim Henman wasthe only surviving player in the quarterfinals. All the Britishwomen were out early last week.

Britain's new sports minister Richard Caborn is promising about$1.12 million in new funding to state and private schools to promotethe game.

"There are 140,000 youngsters playing competitively in France andonly 18,000 here," he said. "If we don't build the base, you don'tget the success."

* n n

GOOD FOR TENNIS: Venus and Serena Williams are controversial, butLindsay Davenport believes they are good for tennis.

"They've been probably the best thing that's happened to tennis,"she said. "Everything that they say or even that dad (Richard) says... you guys have a heart attack about and write it all over theplace.

"They give us so much exposure. They create all this drama forthe sport. ... I think people are so intrigued that it's stillhelping the women's game tremendously."

US official says no plans to extend travel warning for Americans in Europe

LONDON (AP) — US official says no plans to extend travel warning for Americans in Europe.

BBC Natural History Festival

With the BBC's Bristol-based Natural History Unit now in its 47thyear, the city has, for a long time, been in a unique position as acentre for natural history. Therefore, it's definitely not too soonfor a celebration of the pioneering work that has been done withinthe city.

This Saturday (May 31), the BBC are holding their first BristolNatural History Festival at various venues on the harbourside.Thefestival's organiser, Sarah Pitt, who produced Highgrove: A Prince'sLegacy - recently screened on BBC2 - explained the inspiration behindit: "People at the BBC were hearing that Bristolians were proud ofhaving the Natural History Unit here, but were complaining that theydidn't know anything about it. We thought it would be a greatopportunity." The BBC Natural History Unit in Bristol has beenrunning for 46 years, often working alongside the highly respectednatural history and zoological departments at Bristol University.Consequently, they now have a huge library of work and research,which is a massive resource for anyone interested in natural history.

This Saturday's event will be a chance to make use of theseresources and meet some of the producers behind some of the BBC'sgroundbreaking programmes.

"The festival is a bit of an experiment, " Sarah admits."We'venever done it before, so ifpeople do come along we can do it nextyear.Yet, it's a great opportunity to meet the natural history team -they are quite welcome to grab a producer and let them know what theythink." The Watershed is holding various screenings of past BBCprogrammes, plus talks from producers and a chance to meetdocumentary teams.At 1pm cinema 2 will be showing some of the bestmoments from Bill Oddie's Wild In Your Garden series which startedthis week and is filmed in Bristol.The production team will be doinga session as part of the festival talking about their work on theprogramme.

The festival is free, but the Watershed is the only venue where aticket is required for talks where numbers are limited.Tickets willbe available from the Watershed foyer an hour before each talk, andwill be issued on a firstcome, first-served basis.

Talks include Keith Scholey, former head of the Natural HistoryUnit, looking back over nearly 50 years of wildlife television, andthe makers of The Abyss and The Abyss 2 revealing how they filmed inthe depths of the ocean.

Meanwhile, the L-Shed will be providing a more family-orientatedday with a dedicated children's area - face painting, creepycrawliesfrom Bristol Zoo etc - and various exhibits from local wildlifegroups who are continually active in preserving Bristol's naturalwildlife.

At 3.45pm Radio Bristol will be hosting a panel of experts, whowill attempt to answer all of your natural history queries anddilemmas.

If all that isn't enough, the IMAX Theatre will be screening Bugs3D and SOS Planet 3D throughout the day, and the Radio BristolOrchestra will be belting out animal-themed music across MillenniumSquare, from 12noon until 2pm.

Visit www.bbc.co.uk/bristol for a full programme of events, orpick up a leaflet from BBC reception on Whiteladies Road.

Defense minister: France eyes bigger Afghan role

France is considering whether to send more special forces, aircraft or firepower for NATO's fight against the Taliban and their al-Qaida allies in Afghanistan, the French defense minister said Tuesday.

Herve Morin told lawmakers the special forces could be sent to gather intelligence but not to fight, adding that any decision would ultimately rest with French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Morin and Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner faced questions Tuesday before a parliamentary panel as part of an examination by French leaders of the circumstances of an ambush by insurgents east of Kabul last week that left 10 French soldiers dead. The incident sparked debate in France about its role in the war-battered country.

Despite recent polls suggesting the majority of French people favor a pullout from the troubled Central Asian nation, the two ministers emphasized the necessity of staying the course in Afghanistan.

Sarkozy _ speaking at a separate event before members of the regiment that lost eight soldiers in last week's attack _ said France's status as a major player on the international stage depends on its continued participation in the NATO mission in Afghanistan.

"I say it with force: By abandoning the Afghan people to their bad luck and their tormentors, by abandoning out democratic allies and our responsibilities as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, we would be in a way abandoning the security of the French people and our status as a great power," Sarkozy said during his visit to the southern town of Castres, where the hard-hit regiment was based.

"The combat that they are leading in Afghanistan is a just combat, a combat that we must not lose," Sarkozy said.

Morin said during the parliamentary question-and-answer session that recent Taliban attacks were aimed more at spooking the West than regaining territory.

"For them, the goal is ... to hit our spirits, to cut our forces off from the support of public opinion, to sow doubts in Western public opinion so that certain countries leave," he told the lawmakers.

Morin said the Taliban are changing tactics, moving from suicide bombings to well-planned ambushes _ which he called "every soldier's dread." He said he would soon present Sarkozy with a string of proposals aimed at responding to the changing tactics.

Possible proposals include the deployment of more special forces, drone aircraft, greater firepower or more helicopters, he said.

Still, Morin acknowledged that even beefed-up equipment would not guarantee the safety of French troops on the ground in Afghanistan.

"It's not because you have extra drones or helicopters that you'll avoid that Talibans who are hidden in the mountains appear and decide to launch an operation," Morin told lawmakers.

He advocated the deployment of special forces to help in intelligence-gathering, as "In such zones, human intelligence is more important than technical intelligence."

Currently, French special forces in Afghanistan are involved only in the training of Afghan troops.

France has been part of the U.S.-led military operation in Afghanistan since its inception in 2001, when the alliance toppled the Taliban regime after the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States. France has 2,600 troops on Afghan soil and another 700 in support roles in the region. NATO has about 50,000 troops in the country.

___

Associated Press writers Laurent Pirot in Castres, France, and Jamey Keaten and Jenny Barchfield in Paris contributed to this report.

Medicamentos Biosimilares: la Seguridad de los Pacientes Debe Ser lo Primero

Sobre Salud

Aproximadamente 70 millones de ciudadanos estadounidenses tienen artritis. Se trata de uno de los problemas cr�nicos de salud m�s frecuentes del pa�s, que aparece en m�s de 100 variedades. Tampoco afecta �nicamente a la gente de edad avanzada: de hecho, dos tercios de los artr�ticos tienen menos de 65 a�os de edad, y 300,000 de ellos son ni�os. Ninguna otra enfermedad ocasiona m�s discapacidades entre los estadounidenses de m�s de 15 a�os de edad.

Los pacientes como yo, que sufren de artritis, buscan desesperadamente ayuda. Si bien por ahora no hay curas, s� existen varios tratamientos altamente eficaces, que mejoran significativamente la calidad de vida. Entre ellos, los m�s prometedores corresponden a una clase de medicamentos denominados medicamentos biol�gicos. Se est�n tratando con �xito el c�ncer, la enfermedad de Crohn, la esclerosis m�ltiple y otras afecciones, anteriormente consideradas intratables, mediante medicamentos biol�gicos. Asimismo, dichos medicamentos ofrecen un enorme potencial para enfrentar otras enfermedades en el futuro.

Los que vivimos con el dolor y la fatiga cr�nica ocasionados por la artritis, los medicamentos biol�gicos representan un peque�o milagro. Sin embargo, fabricarlos no es f�cil ni econ�mico.

Como se los fabrica a partir de prote�nas y otros compuestos complicados, los medicamentos biol�gicos son mucho m�s complejos que los medicamentos convencionales, basados en mol�culas peque�as, t�picamente recetados por los m�dicos. Asimismo, a diferencia de los medicamentos convencionales, que se elaboran en el laboratorio en base a sustancias qu�micas comunes calentadas en vasos de precipitaci�n, los medicamentos biol�gicos crecen en organismos vivos, en c�lulas de plantas o animales.

Los medicamentos biol�gicos son tan complicados, que es imposible reproducirlos en forma id�ntica. Como cada mol�cula de medicamento biol�gico contiene una gran cantidad de �tomos, la posibilidad de que se produzcan desviaciones estructurales dentro de un mismo lote de medicamentos es considerable. Por ejemplo, es posible que los pacientes con artritis noten leves diferencias en el efecto de cada dosis del medicamento biol�gico que est�n tomando, a pesar de que, te�ricamente, todas las dosis sean iguales.

Actualmente existe un movimiento tendiente a permitir la venta de versiones m�s econ�micas, pero similares, de medicamentos biol�gicos, denominados medicamentos "biosimilares" ["follow-ons"], que responde al prop�sito de contribuir a reducir los costos de la atenci�n de la salud. Si bien se trata de una buena idea, es importante que los legisladores procedan con prudencia, para no arriesgar la seguridad de millones de pacientes.

El medicamento biol�gico que yo tomo actualmente fue aprobado por la Administraci�n de alimentos y medicamentos (Food and Drug Administration - FDA) despu�s de somet�rselo durante varios a�os a pruebas independientes para determinar su seguridad. Sin embargo, algunas de las propuestas tendientes a regular los medicamentos biosimilares no exigen la realizaci�n de ninguna prueba independiente para establecer la seguridad de los nuevos productos. Esta situaci�n podr�a producir consecuencias desastrosas.

Si dos dosis diferentes del mismo medicamento biol�gico de marca pueden arrojar una diferencia notable en su efioacia, imaginen la magnitud de las posibles variaciones en los medicamentos biosimilares, cuyo proceso de fabricaci�n puede ser totalmente diferente del que se aplica al medicamento original.

La idea de tomar un medicamento biosimilar inexacto o no comprobado puede resultar aterradora para aquellos que necesitan medicamentos biol�gicos. Una peque�a variaci�n en el medicamento biol�gico podr�a afectar en forma dram�tica un sistema inmunitario que ya se encuentra comprometido, exponiendo al paciente al peligro de quedar discapacitado o a�n peor.

Adem�s, algunas de las propuestas actuales proponen una clasificaci�n que considerar�a a los medicamentos biosimilares y los medicamentos biol�gicos originales como "intercambiables". Por otra parte, es probable que las aseguradoras decidan cubrir �nicamente los medicamentos biosimilares, que suelen ser m�s econ�micos que los originales.

En el campo de la medicina, no existe una soluci�n �nica para todos. Si el paciente no responde a la administraci�n de un medicamento biosimilar, no se le debe negar el acceso al producto que ha demostrado surtir efecto. Este factor es particularmente importante para los pacientes que sufren de artritis, porque la demora en administrarles un medicamento eficaz puede ocasionar problemas graves.

Desde luego, esto no significa que Washington deber�a prohibir los medicamentos biosimilares. Los mismos podr�an resultar tan �tiles y econ�micos como las versiones gen�ricas de los medicamentos convencionales.

Pero es fundamental que el Congreso establezca un marco reglamentario para los medicamentos biosimilares que exija la comprobaci�n de su seguridad y eficacia, con el objeto de garantizar en primer lugar la seguridad del paciente. Adem�s, los legisladores deber�an establecer normas para la cobertura ofrecida por las aseguradoras, de modo tal que no se les niegue a los pacientes un tratamiento eficaz en base a consideraciones de costo.

Los medicamentos biol�gicos representan un peque�o milagro para aquellos entre nosotros que sufrimos de artritis, porque nos permiten disfrutar de la vida, libres de dolores agonizantes. Al promulgar reglamentos sensatos para los medicamentos biosimilares, que consideren en primer t�rmino la seguridad de los pacientes, los legisladores podr�an preservar la promesa de los medicamentos biol�gicos para los artr�ticos, y para millones de otros pacientes con enfermedades susceptibles de ser tratadas o a�n curadas con los medicamentos biol�gicos.

[Author Affiliation]

Karen Vicari es la directora ejecutiva de Cure Arthritis Now! (�Curemos la artritis ya!), una organizaci�n sin fines de lucro en defensa de los pacientes artr�ticos.

Wet spring, lack of entries among thorns for rose show: ; Organizers decide to go on with event

DAILY MAIL

Dick and Janet Hanlon say this isn't the best spring for theirroses, but they'll have 10 to 15 blooms to enter in the CharlestonRose Society's annual show Sunday at the University of Charleston.The wet, dreary and cool spring threatened to cancel the show.

понедельник, 12 марта 2012 г.

(null)

The striking Writers Guild of America said Thursday it has signed interim deals with The Film Department and Intermedia Film.

Patric M. Verrone, president of the guild's West Coast branch, said the companies recognize the importance of an agreement that fairly compensates writers. No details of the deals were released.

Other deals allowing writers to go back to work have been reached with independent production companies such as Marvel, RKO Productions and United Artists.

Intermedia's film library includes "The Hunting Party" and "Breach." Former Miramax Films executives founded The Film Department last year.

The writers guild, on strike since Nov. 5, is in informal talks with studio bosses to reach an agreement on a long-term contract and end a costly three-month walkout.

Redknapp to face July trial on tax evasion charges

LONDON (AP) — Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp will go on trial in July on charges of tax evasion dating from his time in charge of Portsmouth.

Redknapp and his former Portsmouth chairman Milan Mandaric will face charges at Southwark Crown Court in south London on allegations that Mandaric paid Redknapp a total $295,000 via a Monaco bank account.

Redknapp, who ended a second spell in charge of Portsmouth in 2008, is charged with two counts of cheating the government of an estimated 40,000 pounds ($64,000).

The pair were charged last year following an inquiry involving City of London Police and the government's Revenue and Customs department.

American League Standings

W L Pct GB
Boston 46 29 .613 _
New York 43 32 .573 3
Tampa Bay 42 35 .545 5
Toronto 41 36 .532 6
Baltimore 34 41 .453 12
Central Division
W L Pct GB
Detroit 42 33 .560 _
Minnesota 39 38 .506 4
Chicago 37 37 .500 4 1/2
Kansas City 32 42 .432 9 1/2
Cleveland 31 46 .403 12
West Division
W L Pct GB
Los Angeles 41 32 .562 _
Texas 40 34 .541 1 1/2
Seattle 38 36 .514 3 1/2
Oakland 31 43 .419 10 1/2
___
Saturday's Games
Philadelphia 10, Toronto 0
St. Louis 5, Minnesota 3
Boston 1, Atlanta 0
L.A. Angels 2, Arizona 1
Chicago White Sox 8, Chicago Cubs 7
Houston 8, Detroit 1
Pittsburgh 6, Kansas City 2
Cincinnati 7, Cleveland 3
Baltimore 6, Washington 3
Tampa Bay 3, Florida 2
N.Y. Yankees 5, N.Y. Mets 0
San Diego 7, Texas 3
Colorado 11, Oakland 9
Seattle 5, L.A. Dodgers 1
Sunday's Games
Cincinnati 8, Cleveland 1
Philadelphia 5, Toronto 4
Atlanta 2, Boston 1
Kansas City 3, Pittsburgh 2
Washington 5, Baltimore 3
Tampa Bay 5, Florida 2
Detroit 4, Houston 3
Chicago White Sox 6, Chicago Cubs 0
Minnesota 6, St. Louis 2
Colorado 3, Oakland 1
L.A. Angels 12, Arizona 8
Seattle 4, L.A. Dodgers 2
N.Y. Yankees 4, N.Y. Mets 2
San Diego 2, Texas 0
Monday's Games
Boston at Baltimore, 7:05 p.m.
Chicago White Sox at Cleveland, 7:05 p.m.
Tampa Bay at Toronto, 7:07 p.m.
L.A. Angels at Texas, 8:05 p.m.
Minnesota at Kansas City, 8:10 p.m.
Detroit at Oakland, 10:05 p.m.
Tuesday's Games
Seattle at N.Y. Yankees, 7:05 p.m.
Boston at Baltimore, 7:05 p.m.
Chicago White Sox at Cleveland, 7:05 p.m.
Tampa Bay at Toronto, 7:07 p.m.
L.A. Angels at Texas, 8:05 p.m.
Minnesota at Kansas City, 8:10 p.m.
Detroit at Oakland, 10:05 p.m.

Pr companies toast merger

Two of Bristol's largest public relations agencies have mergedwith Strategy Communications having been bought for an undisclosedsum by Harrison Cowley.

The company will trade under the Harrison Cowley name with jointfee income of GBP1.5 million and an outstanding client portfolio andemploying 28 people.

Harrison Cowley's South West operation will be led by Ian Muir,founder of Strategy Communications.

He said: "This merger gives us the critical mass to furtherenhance our specialist business-to-business, consumer, property andpublic sector marketing support, creating a service offering that israrely found outside London."

Bristol, the city in which Harrison Cowley was founded in the1960s, will now be home to one of the strongest teams in the nationalHarrison Cowley group.

Harrison Cowley's new South West region client base will nowinclude Business West, the Bristol Alliance, Crest Nicholson, HaysPersonnel, Knight Frank, Land Securities, Land Rover, Lloyds TSB,Solomon Hare, and Westinghouse. No jobs will be lost.

Kwik Save sales lift SUPERMARKET group Somerfield reported a saleslift for its Kwik Save brand after showing signs of benefiting from astore refit programme.

The Bristol-based group, which acquired the business in 1998, saidlike-for-like sales at Kwik Save grew one per cent in the 24 weeks toApril 24, compared to a one per cent decline seen over the previous28 weeks.

At Somerfield-branded stores, like-for-like sales were 1.8 percent higher for the last half-year period, slightly down on the rateof 2.2per cent seen prior to that.

The boost comes after the group embarked on a major refurbishment.One-third of the group's 601 Somerfield stores have so far beensubject to refits, while around 70 Kwik Save shops out of 649 havebeen given a new look.

Unite are upbeat GEOFFREY Maddrell, chairman of Bristol-basedstudent accommodation provider the Unite Group has given an upbeatforecast for the future at its annual general meeting.

Mr Maddrell said first quarter performance was on track, with like-for-like reservations up 2.3 per cent and applications from thehigher education sector up 3.1 per cent. He said there was everyconfidence to build upon its position as the UK's leading provider ofstudent accommodation.

The firm, which expects to be providing more than 30,000 bedsprofitably within 18 months, is to develop and operate a 1,162-bed,GBP45 million student village in Sheffield with investment bankLehman Brothers.

Many Budget Digest requests go unfunded, Lawmakers asked for about three times amount available

Lawmakers asked the state's fabled Budget Digest to fund at least$100 million worth of projects and programs, but they'll likely endup with less than a third of that to divvy up.

Now meeting in an interim session, legislators must parcel outavailable funding before July 1, the start of the budget year. Untilthe process concludes, probably during next month's interim meeting,it is impossible to predict exactly what will be spent.

But it's clear that cuts in the overall budget will hinder digestspending.

Many of those 39 budget lines have been reduced in the 2003-04budget, which will grow by only $36 million over the current yeardespite soaring payments for pensions, health care and insurancecosts.

The current budget, for instance, allotted $4.5 million forcenters and programs in the Bureau of Senior Services. That wasparceled out in the Budget Digest to more than 80 aging-relatedefforts across the state. Next year's budget reduces that line itemby $600,000, meaning some of those programs will come up empty.

Another example: this year's digest spent $1.4 million on morethan 300 fairs and festivals, about a third of that through theDepartment of Agriculture, a traditional source. The 2003-04 budgethas no funds for that line item, meaning all fair spending will haveto come through the Division of Culture and History.

"Legislators are either deaf or blind," said AgricultureCommissioner Gus Douglass. "They didn't include me when they movedall of these moneys out of the department. It was just a slam-bangdecision."

The budget cuts did not stop lawmakers from seeking funding formost of these fairs and festivals in the new digest. Requests forsuch items total at least $1.6 million.

The overall tally of more than 2,000 requests submitted bylawmakers easily exceeds $100 million, but they often overlap.

No fewer than 27 legislators, for instance, each requested $5,000for the "Alliance for West Virginia Champion Communities," an AlumCreek-based community action group.

Staff for Senate Finance Chairman Walt Helmick, D-Pocahontas, havebeen able to eliminate duplicate requests from that chamber to arriveat a $69 million price tag. Lincoln County hosts the largest share ofBudget Digest requests on the Senate's roster, at $5.8 million.

Facing requests from 100 delegates, House staff have yet to crunchtheir numbers. A review of those requests shows at least $30 millionworth of projects not on the Senate's list.

Hardy County, for instance, is earmarked for only $5,000 on theSenate's list of requests. The county is home to House FinanceChairman Harold Michael, a Democrat, whose own requests total $4.2million. Requests from Michael and other Hardy delegates total atleast $1 million.

An analysis of the 2002-03 Budget Digest identified a home countyfor all but 29 of the more than 1,700 projects listed for funding.Perhaps not surprisingly, projects based in Kanawha County got thelargest share, about $2.3 million.

But that sum amounts to less than $12 per resident. Hardy County,by contrast, received nearly $111 for each of its residents.Pendleton County, also part of Michael's district, saw $134 perperson, the most of any county.

Funding earmarked for nearby Hampshire County totaled $1.7million, or $86 per person. But House Education Chairman JerryMezzatesta, D-Hampshire, said the digest often lists funding alreadydedicated in the regular budget bill.

Of the county's 2002-03 funding, $808,275 was allotted to itsBoard of Education. But the budget had already allotted that amountto the county's Potomac Center for developmentally challengedchildren. The same is true for much of the education-related spendingfound in the Budget Digest, Mezzatesta said.

"In actuality, most of the money is already spent," he said.

Hepatitis B Knowledge, Testing and Vaccination Levels in Chinese Immigrants to British Columbia, Canada

ABSTRACT

Background: Little is known about hepatitis B (HBV) and liver cancer control in Chinese in Canada. Liver cancer, a significant health problem in Asia, is preventable and can be controlled through HBV blood testing, vaccination, and community education about HBV.

Objective: The overall goal was to increase HBV testing and vaccination in Chinese adult Canadians. The objective was to present findings on HBV testing, vaccination and knowledge in Chinese immigrants.

Methods: 504 randomly selected Chinese adult immigrants residing in Vancouver responded to the survey which examined HBV blood testing and vaccination practices, HBV knowledge levels and socio-demographic characteristics. Face-to-face interviews were conducted in Cantonese, Mandarin, or English.

Results: 57% of participants reported that they had received HBV blood testing, 38% had been vaccinated, and 6% were known HBV carriers. There were gender differences, with lower rates of testing and vaccination, and higher chronic carrier rates, among men. Over 80% knew that HBV can be spread by asymptomatic persons and can cause cirrhosis and liver cancer. However, confusion existed about the routes of HBV transmission.

Interpretation: A sizeable proportion of Chinese adult immigrants in Vancouver have not been tested or vaccinated for HBV. Knowledge level, especially about routes of HBV transmission, was low. This is a concern, given that chronic HBV infection is the most common cause of liver cancer in Asian North Americans. To improve knowledge, reduce risk of infection and the burden of chronic infection and its sequelae in immigrant populations, continuing educational efforts are needed.

MeSH terms: Hepatitis B; liver neoplasms; health knowledge, attitudes, practices; asian continental ancestry group; emigration and immigration

Asians, one of the fastest growing and most culturally diverse minority populations in Canada, has Chinese as the largest subgroup. In 2001, approximately 1,100,000 ethnic Chinese were living in Canada,1 the majority being foreign-born. Little is known about disease prevention behaviour and cancer control in the Chinese population.2

In many Asian countries, liver cancer, a preventable disease, is the most common cancer.1 s In North America, it occurs more frequently among Chinese than the general population,6,7 and among Asian-born as compared to North American-born Chinese.8 This excess risk is attributed to high rates of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection combined with low levels of HBV vaccination.3-5 HBV infection is endemic in most Asian countries.9 Between 30% and 50% of Chinese immigrants to North America have serologic evidence of past HBV infection.10,11 In Canada, approximately 250,000 persons are estimated to be infected with HBV, 70% being immigrants from foreign countries.12

A significant proportion of HBV-infected persons become chronic carriers, potentially infectious to others and at considerable risk of liver cancer, chronic active hepatitis and cirrhosis.3,13,14 Chronic HBV infection is attributed to be the most common underlying cause of liver cancer in Asian North American populations.10 Chronic carriers may benefit from antiviral therapy and regular surveillance to detect early liver cancer,12 and should take precautions to avoid infecting others.15-18

There have been several recent reports on HBV-related knowledge and behaviour in Korean19 and Vietnamese20-22 immigrants, but not in Chinese immigrants. Potential strategies for controlling HBV infection among Asian populations in Canada include the routine testing of immigrants, vaccinating immigrants who have never been exposed to HBV, and educating communities about the routes of HBV transmission.14 Provincial guidelines recommend HBV testing in persons at high risk of HBV infection, including immigrants from regions with high HBV endemic rates, and those who are not immune.23

We are not aware of any national data addressing HBV knowledge and behaviour among Chinese Canadians. Health education programs for this population should be based on a thorough understanding of knowledge, beliefs, and practices.24 We conducted a needs assessment survey of Chinese adult Canadians in Vancouver, British Columbia from April to September, 2005. The objective of this paper is to present findings on HBV blood testing, vaccination and knowledge for Chinese adult immigrants to Canada.

METHOD

Study group and survey procedures

A Community Advisory Committee was formed to advise the research team throughout the study and included 4 representatives from Chinese organizations serving Cantonese- and Mandarin-speaking communities in Vancouver and 3 physicians knowledgeable about HBV and liver cancer.

Households were randomly selected for interview from 10 east Vancouver postal code areas with high proportions of Chinese residents. Chinese households were identified using the 2004 electronic Vancouver telephone book and 178 Chinese surnames common in BC.25 A total of 1,500 households were selected and mailed introductory letters (in traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, and English) with a calendar as a small incentive. The letter explained the purpose of the study, how the household was selected, and invited Chinese adults between the ages of 20 and 64 years to participate.

Each household was subsequently approached by a trained trilingual Chinese interviewer in order to identify eligible adults and to conduct the interview in the language of choice. Individuals were eligible if they were Chinese (regardless of country of origin); aged 20 to 64 years; and able to speak Cantonese, Mandarin, or English. If there was more than one eligible adult in the household, the interviewer selected the eldest. Interviewers made at least five door-to-door attempts at contacting each household, including daytime, evening, and weekend attempts. Participants were offered $20 as a token of appreciation. Interviewers and participants were gender matched (Figure 1).

For this paper, the analysis was restricted to Chinese adults born outside of North America.

Survey instrument

The survey questionnaire was developed in English, incorporating findings from 40 qualitative interviews of Chinese men and women,26 and then translated into Cantonese and Mandarin. It was pretested with four Chinese adults (a Cantonese- and Mandarin-speaker of each gender) and modified where necessary by the research team. The questionnaire contained six sections (health care, health information, HBV history, HBV knowledge, heart disease, socio-demographics) and took on average 45 minutes to complete. Relevant questions are shown in Appendix 1.

The project was approved by the Research Ethics Board at the University of British Columbia.

Data analysis

Logistic regression models were used to compare the demographic characteristics of respondents who did and did not report a previous HBV test as well as those who did and did not report vaccination, adjusting for age. Since there was a significant difference in HBV testing rates between men and women, all comparisons were done stratified by gender, by including an interaction term in the regression model between a factor of interest and gender. The age adjustment was made because male respondents were slightly younger than female respondents.

RESULTS

Study group

The final study group included 504 individuals (217 men and 287 women), with an overall response rate of 59% (Table I). 366 (73%) respondents completed the survey in Cantonese, 102 (20%) in Mandarin, and 36 (7%) in English.

The majority of respondents were currently married (84%), with at least 12 years of education (67%), with less than 20 years of residence in North America (62%), fluent in English (65%), and born in China (55%) (Table II).

Hepatitis B testing and vaccination

Two hundred and eighty-seven (57%) persons indicated they had received a HBV blood test, and 191 (38%) indicated they had been vaccinated against hepatitis B. HBV testing was significantly less common in men as compared to women (p=0.01, Table II). Also, HBV testing and vaccination were significantly more common at younger ages (men-vaccinated, p=0.002; women-tested, p=0.0006) (Table III).

The proportions of participants reporting they had been tested and vaccinated, tested but not vaccinated, vaccinated but not tested, and neither tested nor vaccinated were 20%, 30%, 14%, and 35%, respectively, for men, and 33%, 29%, 8%, and 30%, respectively, for women. Of those indicating that they had been tested, 73% of the men, and 76% of the women, reported that their blood test was done in North America. Likewise, of those indicating that they had been vaccinated, 57% of the men, and 73% of the women, reported they had received their shots in North America. Fourteen (7%) men and 14 (5%) women reported that a doctor had told them that they were hepatitis B carriers. Of these 28 carriers, 3, 10 and 15 were ages 20-34 years, 35-49 years and 50-64 years, respectively.

HBV testing was associated with higher education in women (p=0.01), and shorter length of time in North America in both men (p=0.02) and women (p=0.003). Vaccination was not associated with any demographic factor other than age (Table II).

Hepatitis B knowledge

Finally, hepatitis B knowledge was assessed after age adjustment and most respondents knew that HBV can cause cirrhosis (83%) and liver cancer (81%), and can be spread by someone who looks healthy (80%) (Table IV). Few persons knew that HBV was not spread by sharing eating utensils ( 11 %) or eating food prepared by an infected person (24%). In general, the scores were similar for men and women. However, fewer women than men knew that HBV was more easily spread than AIDS (p=0.0001) and could be spread during sexual intercourse (p=0.003). Fewer men than women knew that HBV was not spread by eating food prepared by an infected person (p<0.0001).

DISCUSSION

We found that slightly more than one half of Chinese adult immigrants to Vancouver reported being tested for HBV, with higher proportions in women than men (most likely due to prenatal testing) and at younger ages. Blood testing was associated with higher education and more recent arrival in North America for both genders. This latter finding may be due to HBV testing campaigns in Asia which are lacking in North America. However, most testing was reported as being done in North America. Perhaps there is greater attention given to recent immigrants for HBV testing rather than longer-term residents who are still at risk.

Slightly more men than women reported that their doctor had told them that they were HBV carriers. The higher carrier rate in men cannot be explained by age differences between genders because men in our sample tended to be younger than women, which would suggest more testing and vaccination. The gender difference may actually be greater because fewer men received testing and hence knew their carrier status.

The literature suggests that between 5% and 15% of ethnic Chinese are chronic carriers, compared to less than 1 % of the general Canadian population.10,11,15,27 This is consistent with our findings, as only about one half of the survey participants reported that they had been tested for HBV and hence might know their carrier status.

Regarding vaccination, only slightly over one third of respondents reported being vaccinated for HBV. Again, the proportion was lower in men than women, with fewer vaccinations being done in North America for men. The gender difference may suggest a higher HBV infection in men, which is consistent with the higher carrier rate, as vaccination is not recommended in these cases. Vaccination was associated with younger age in men. Although the numbers of respondents were small, HBV testing and vaccination rates were highest among immigrants from Taiwan. Taiwan, Hong Kong and Singapore have led the world in universal childhood HBV vaccination programs.2" We also found that about 10% of respondents had been vaccinated without testing, with higher percentages in men than women. Some of these persons who have been vaccinated without testing may be carriers who would benefit from surveillance for liver cancer and antiviral medication.16

Regarding knowledge about HBV infection, most knew that it was associated with cirrhosis and liver cancer. However, we identified some important gaps in knowledge. Many respondents did not know how the disease was transmitted. Few recognized that it was not a food-borne disease, especially the men. This would suggest that many Chinese immigrants may be confusing hepatitis B with other communicable diseases such as hepatitis A. Also, less than one half knew that a person can be infected with HBV disease for life.

Our study has several strengths. We used population-based sampling methods and administered the survey in person in the language of choice. However, our study also has several limitations. Specifically, respondents were recruited in one lowerincome geographic area, which may not be representative of all Chinese in Vancouver; only households with listed telephone numbers were eligible; individuals of Chinese descent who spoke a language/dialect other than Cantonese, Mandarin, or English were excluded; and a proportion of households were unreachable or refused to participate. Vaccination rates may in fact be higher if the non-responders were younger persons, as childhood HBV vaccination programs have been operational in Asia, beginning with Taiwan in 1984.'9 Differential response rates between genders may also suggest that younger men were less likely to be interviewed, which could introduce bias in the gender comparisons. Finally, we did not attempt medical records verification of self-reported HBV testing and vaccination.

Caution has to be exercised in interpreting the reported statistical significance levels. We did not report multiple-comparisonadjusted p-values, as we believe the interpretation of p-values depends on a priori scientific plausibility of each factor. Rather, we reported the numeric values of the p-values so that readers could interpret the results according to their own a priori beliefs on the scientific plausibility of each factor's association.

Our research group is currently conducting a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the impact of a multi-faceted outreach worker intervention (home visit by an outreach worker, a video, and a pamphlet) on hepatitis B knowledge and testing levels among Chinese Canadians. We are also conducting a group-randomized controlled trial to evaluate a hepatitis B educational curriculum for Chinese Canadian immigrants attending English as a second Language classes. Our findings confirm the need for continued efforts to develop and implement targeted educational campaigns to reduce the high burden of chronic hepatitis B infection and liver cancer in Chinese immigrants.

[Sidebar]

R�SUM�

Contexte : On sait peu de choses sur le virus de l'h�patite B (VHB) et la lutte contre le cancer du foie clans la population chinoise du Canada. Le cancer du foie, un important probl�me de sant� en Asie, est une maladie �vitable que l'on peut contr�ler par le d�pistage du VHB clans le sang, par la vaccination et par la sensibilisation communautaire au VHB.

Objectif : La finalit� de l'�tude �tait d'accro�tre le d�pistage du VHB et la vaccination anti-VHB chez les adultes canadiens d'origine chinoise. Son objectif �tait de pr�senter les constatations sur le d�pistage, la vaccination et les connaissances sur le VHB aux immigrants chinois.

M�thode : Cinq cent quatre (504) immigrants chinois adultes s�lectionn�s au hasard habitant � Vancouver ont r�pondu � notre questionnaire, qui portait sur les pratiques de d�pistage sanguin du VHB et de vaccination anti-VHB, les niveaux de connaissances du VHB et les caract�ristiques sociod�mographiques des r�pondants. Des entretiens en personne ont �t� men�s en cantonais, en mandarin ou en anglais.

R�sultats : Cinquante-sept p. cent (57 %) des participants ont dit avoir subi un test de d�pistage sanguin du VHB, 38 % ont dit avoir �t� vaccin�s, et 6 % �taient des porteurs connus du VHB. Nous avons constat� certaines diff�rences entre les sexes : chez les hommes, les taux de d�pistage et de vaccination �taient plus faibles, et les taux de portage chronique plus �lev�s. Plus de 80 % des r�pondants savaient que le VHB peut �tre propag� par des porteurs asymptomatiques, et qu'il peut causer une cirrhose et le cancer du foie. Il r�gnait toutefois une certaine confusion quant aux voies de transmission du virus.

Interpr�tation : Une proportion appr�ciable d'immigrants adultes d'origine chinoise vivant � Vancouver n'avait ni subi un test de d�pistage, ni �t� vaccin�e contre le VHB. Le niveau de connaissances, surtout sur les voies de transmission du virus, �tait faible. C'est une situation pr�occupante, car l'infection chronique � VHB est la cause la plus commune du cancer du foie chez les Nord-Am�ricains d'origine asiatique. Pour am�liorer les connaissances, r�duire les risques d'infection et all�ger le fardeau de l'infection chronique et de ses s�quelles dans les populations immigrantes, il faut poursuivre les efforts de sensibilisation.

[Reference]

REFERENCES

1. Statistics Canada. Population by selected ethnic origins, by provinces and territories (2001 Census). Available online at: http://www40.statcan.ca/101/cst01/demo26a.htm?sdi=chinese (Accessed July 2, 2006).

2. Jenkins CNH, Kagawa-Singer M. Cancer. In: Zane NW, Takeuchi DK, Young KN (Eds.), Confronting Critical Health Issues of Asian and Pacific Islander Americans. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1994.

3. Di Bisceglie AM, Rustgi VK, Hoofnagle JH, Dusheiko GM, Lotze MT. NIH conference: Hepatocellular carcinoma. Ann Intern Med 1988; 108:390-401.

4. Euler GL. Asian and Pacific Islander child hepatitis B vaccination catch-up: Why now is the best time. Asian Am Pacific IsIJ Health 1997:5:40-45.

5. London WT, McGlynn KA. Liver cancer. In: Scottenfeld D, Fraumeni JF (Eds.), Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1996.

6. Perkins CI, Morris CR, Wright WE, Young JL. Cancer incidence and mortality in California by detailed race/ethnicity, 1988-1992. Sacramento, CA: California Department of Health Services, 1995.

7. Miller BA. Racial/ethnic patterns of cancer in the United States, 1988-1992. Bethesda, MD: National Cancer Institute, 1996.

8. Rosenblatt KA, Weiss NS, Schwartz SM. Liver cancer in Asian migrants to the United States and their descendants. Cancer Cause Control 1996:7:345-50.

9. Nguyen MH, Keeffe EB. Chronic hepatitis B and hepatitis C in Asian Americans. Rev Gasrroenterol Dis 2003:3:125-34.

10. Merican I, Guan R, Amarapuka D, Alexander MJ, Chutaputti A, Chien RN, et al. Chronic hepatitis B virus infection in Asian countries. J Gastroenterol Hefatol 2000; 15:1356-61.

11. Walker PF, Jaranson J. Refugee and immigrant health care. Med CUn North Am 1999:83:1103-20.

12. Sherman M, Bain V, Villeneuve JP, Myers RP, Cooper C, Martin S, et al. The management of chronic viral hepatitis: A Canadian Consensus Conference 2004. Can J Gastroenterol 2004:18:715-28.

13. Hwang SJ, Tong MJ, Lai PPC, Ko ES, Co RL, Chien D, et al. Evaluation of hepatitis B and C viral markers: Clinical significance in Asian and Caucasian patients with hepatocellular carcinoma in the United States of America. J Castro Hep 1996:11:949-54.

14. Jenkins CNH, Buu C, Berger W, Son DT. Liver carcinoma prevention among Asian Pacific Islanders. Cancer 2001 ;91:252-56.

15. Tong MJ, Hwang SJ. Hepatitis B virus infection in Asian Americans. Gastroenterol Clinics N Am 1994:23:523-36.

16. Malik AH, Lee WM. Chronic hepatitis B virus infection: Treatment strategies for the next millennium. Ann Intern Med 2000; 132:723-31.

17. Lin OS, Keefle E. Current treatment strategies for chronic hepatitis B and C. Annti Rev Med 2001;52:29-49.

18. Lok A, McMahon B. Chronic hepatitis B. Hepatol 2001;34:1225-41.

19. Choe JH. Chan N, Do HH, Woodall E, Lim E, Taylor VM. Hepatitis B and liver cancer beliefs among Korean immigrants in Western Washington. Cancer 2005;104:2955-58.

20. Taylor VM, Yasui Y, Burke N, Choe JH, Acorda E, Jackson JC. Hepatitis B knowledge and testing among Vietnamese-American women. Ethn Dis 2005;15:761-67.

21. Taylor VM, Yasui Y, Burke N, Nguyen T, Chen A, Acorda E, et al. Hepatitis B testing among Vietnamese American men. Cancer Detect Prev 2004;28:170-77.

22. Burke NJ, Jackson JC, Thai HC, Stackhouse F, Nguyen T, Chen A, Taylor VM. 'Honoring tradition, accepting new ways': Development of a hepatitis B control intervention for Vietnamese immigrants. Ethm Health 2004;9:153-69.

23. BC Health Services Guidelines and Protocols Advisory Committee 2005. Viral Hepatitis Testing. Available online at: www.healthservices.gov. be. ca/msp/protoguides/gps/vihep.pdf (Accessed July 2, 2006).

24. Hubbell FA, Chavez LR, Mishra SI, Magana JR, Burciaga Valdez R. From ethnography to intervention: Developing a breast cancer control program for Latinas. Natl Cancer inst Monogr 1995:109-15.

25. Hislop TG, Schwartz SM, Taylor VM, Pineda M, Tu S, Teh C, et al. Identification of Chinese subjects for etiological and cancer control research: Description of sampling methods based upon surnames. North American Association of Central Cancer Registries Annual Meeting, New Orleans, 15-20 April 2000, p. 87.

26. Chen H, Tu SP, Teh C, Yip MP, Choe JH, Hislop TG, et al. Lay beliefs about hepatitis among North American Chinese: Implications for hepatitis prevention. J Community Health 2006;31:94-112.

27. Centers for Disease Control. Screening for hepatitis B virus infection among refugees arriving in the United States. MMWR 1991;45:784-86.

28. Farrell GC, Liaw YF. Towards consensus on the control of chronic hepatitis and hepatitis C in the Asia-Pacific region. J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2000;15:1-2.

29. Chen DS, Hsu NH, Sung JL, Hsu TC, Hsu ST, Kuo YT, et al. A mass vaccination program in Taiwan against hepatitis B virus infection in infants of hepatitis B surface antigen-carrier mothers. JAMA 1987;257:2597-603.

Received: March 14, 2006

Accepted: July 14, 2006

[Author Affiliation]

T. Gregory Hislop, MDCM1,2

Chong Teh, PhD1

Angeline Low, PhD1

Lin Li, MD, MS3

Shin-Ping Tu, MD, MPH4

Yutaka Yasui, PhD5

Vicky M. Taylor, MD, MPH3,6

[Author Affiliation]

La traduction du r�sum� se trouve � la fin de l'article.

1. Cancer Control Research, BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver, BC

2. Department of Health Care and Epidemiology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

3. Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington, USA

4. Department of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle

5. Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB

6. Department of Health Services, University of Washington

Correspondence and reprint requests: Dr. T. Gregory Hislop, K2-109, 675 West 10th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5Z 1L3, Tel: 604-675-8060 Fax: 604-675-8180, E-mail: ghislop@bccrc.ca

Acknowledgements: We thank the study participants, the Vancouver interviewers, and the members of the Vancouver community advisors coalition: I. Chan (Canadian Cancer Society), A. Cheung (S.U.C.C.E.S.S.), Dr. M. Jung (Chinese Canadian Medical Society), G. Mumick (Vancouver Coastal Health), Dr. C. Yang (Taiwanese Canadian Cultural Society), Dr. E. Yoshida (BC Hepatitis Programme), and Dr. M. Yu (Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Vancouver).

Sources of funding: This work was supported by the US National Cancer Institute (grant number CA113663). Y. Yasui was partially supported by the Canada Research Chair Program.

Bush implores US Congress to act to rescue markets

President George W. Bush on Tuesday tried to reassure the United States that Congress will pass a plan to save the sinking U.S. economy even as no clear path existed for that to happen. He warned of painful, lasting damage for millions of people if lawmakers do not get moving.

"The reality is that we are in an urgent situation, and the consequences will grow worse each day if we do not act," Bush said.

The reality for the president, though, was that he has diminishing influence over the events unfolding around him.

He spoke one day after the House of Representatives jolted Washington, Wall Street and the watching world by rejecting a $700 billion economic bailout package. The bill had been painstakingly negotiated by leaders of both parties with the administration, and hailed by Bush as an "extraordinary agreement." Then it failed anyway.

The vote was close, 228-205, but two-thirds of the members from the president's own party rejected it. The defeat sent stocks plummeting, and the underlying problem remains unfixed: lending remains frozen because the financial system is choking on its own debt, the result of bad mortgages.

In Bush's favor, Congress agrees on the need to take some action, perhaps a revived version of the bill that died in the House.

"I assure our citizens _ and citizens around the world _ that this is not the end of the legislative process," Bush said during a four-minute statement on the financial crisis. Alluding to the messy fate of the bill, Bush downplayed the importance of exactly how a deal gets done.

"What matters," he said, "is that we get a law."

Without getting specific, the White House signaled a willingness to go along with changes to the bill, provided they address the problem in the financial markets and produce votes for passage. Congress was on break Tuesday for the Jewish New Year, but behind-the-scenes negotiations carried on.

In a joint letter to Bush on Tuesday, the leader of the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid welcomed the president's statement and promised to work with Republicans on a bipartisan bill "without further delay."

The two men who want Bush's job, Republican Sen. John McCain and Democratic Sen. Barack Obama, both telephoned the president. White House spokesman Tony Fratto said the two presidential contenders each offered ideas on what to do next, and reaffirmed that the crisis must be fixed.

Meanwhile, Bush's words marked the ninth straight day he has commented on the economic meltdown in some form. That includes a rare prime-time address to the nation last week, his most high-profile effort to win over lawmakers and a frustrated, confused public.

Yet the president has much working against him: low public approval, waning time in office, and a Congress that has shown it will act on its own terms _ particularly in an election year when constituents are hammering lawmakers' offices with angry comments about rescuing financial institutions.

Bush keeps canceling travel plans to stay in Washington and work on a deal. Fratto said Bush intends to do that "for as long as it takes to get this done."

Less clear was how much it was helping. Asked whether Bush's ability to influence others had disappeared, Fratto said: "I think there has always been far too much made of any one president's powers of persuasion on an issue."

He said the White House has won its share of policy battles, too, and that its focus remains on getting a solution in place.

White House officials say the huge plunge in the stock market on Monday, the day the House bill failed, may end up helping by swaying some lawmakers. Bush cited the falling market of a sign of what could come, warning that the economic damage will be "painful and lasting."

"For the financial security of every American," Bush said, "Congress must act."

среда, 7 марта 2012 г.

For Openers ...

No other sport ushers in a season with the fanfare of baseball'sOpening Day. Baseball isn't even the favorite sport of the SundayDrive, but we admit there's something special about that first day.The symbolism of summer's approach can't be dismissed.

So we've decided to take a look at some memorable home openers forthe White Sox and Cubs. The Sox host the Cleveland Indians tonight,and the Cubs host the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday.

ON THE RECORD WITH ...

KAHLID KANNOUCHI

He's one of the top distance runners in the world and a four-timewinner of the LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon. A two-time world-recordholder in the marathon, Khannouchi, 34, had a mile to go last year inthe Shamrock Shuffle -- which is an 8K race in the Loop -- beforedropping out with an injury to his left foot. He's back in Chicago tocompete in the Shuffle today.

How's the foot? It's much better. I feel like I'm completelyrecovered. I'm fully trained, so I'm ready to compete.

You went through tough times treating the foot.

I went to 10 different countries to find out what's wrong. Then Iended up going to New Jersey to a doctor recommended by [racedirector] Carey Pinkowski, and Dr. John Connors helped me. Iunderwent minor surgery, and I'm using special orthotics. It took awhile to get acclimated. The problem was an inflammation of differenttissue. I had a problem with biomechanics, and that made it worse.

Why do you want to compete in the Shamrock Shuffle? Because lastyear I dropped out. And this is three weeks before the [London]marathon. I'm bored with training, and I didn't want to traveloverseas. This is a good 8K race, and it will be my last race beforeLondon. Plus, there's a good atmosphere and a lot of excitement. Over25,000 people ran the race last year, and I'm expecting that manyagain this year. Hopefully, we'll get lucky with the weather.

This is the last race before London on April 23. You broke theworld record there in 2002, and you will be facing perhaps thetoughest marathon field ever. Are you ready? I'm ready. You have tohave a very good day. I hope we can have good weather. But I'm readyto compete.

Your last marathon was in Chicago in 2004. How did you staymotivated during your inactivity? Sometimes it was very hard to staymotivated. But when you love something, and you love to compete,that's a good motivation. When you see people performing, you want tocompete.

HITS

BOB ARUM: Top Rank's top guy pulls a coup by signing TomZbikowski. The least experienced name on the June 10 card is the topdraw for the pay-per-view event.

JIM LARRANAGA: He's become a history teacher of sorts as peoplesuddenly are looking up the background of George Mason.

LeBron James: Has his team in the playoffs. Following blueprint togreatness one step at a time.

MAKING A LIST

TIGHT SPOT

The NBA's latest apparel fad is wearing tights.

Players say they help keep muscles warm.

So much for old-school toughness. The NBA will try to ban themnext season. Marcus Camby said it best: "I ain't wearing nopantyhose."

Kobe Bryant

Lakers

It's hard to imagine his muscles would have a chance to cool offwith how much he shoots.

Vince Carter

Nets

One thing you need to do while wearing tights is bring someserious game. Carter and the Nets are doing just that.

Lebron James

Cavaliers

Stock prices for tights must have soared once he squeezed into apair.

Jerry Stackhouse

Mavericks

He is considered the first player to model the tights. But whywould other players want to follow his lead?

MISSES

BUD SELIG: It's too late to clean things up. This now looks like awitch hunt, and the racial implications are unavoidable. You couldhave done something sooner.

Trib co.: Bud Light Bleachers? Wow. How long before the seventh-

inning stretch is sold to a sponsor?

Bill Wirtz: Closing in on Hawks franchise record for losses. Nowins. No fans. No optimism for the future. Can't wait for nextseason.

TALKIN' TRASH

"I think you can win championships at Indiana." --Kelvin sampson,during his introductory news conference in Bloomington, Ind. "I couldhave helped them win 20 more games to get into the playoffs."

--Tim Thomas, making a claim about the Bulls that GM John Paxsoncalled "delusional"

WHITE SOX Opening Day record: 54-51 uHome openers: 55-50

Last year April 4, 2005: The championship season started with a 1-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians. Mark Buehrle (right) outdueledJake Westbrook, yielding just two hits and striking out five in eightinnings to pick up the win. Shingo Takatsu notched the save.

The game lasted just 1 hour, 51 minutes. Paul Konerko led off theseventh with a double and advanced on Jermaine Dye's fly. AaronRowand hit a bouncer to Jhonny Peralta that took a bad hop, allowingKonerko to score the decisive run. Lucky hop? Maybe. But it certainlywas an omen of things to come.

BEST April 14, 1910: Frank Smith fired a one-hitter, and the WhiteSox defeated the St. Louis Browns 3-0 at South Side Park III. Smithwas a colorful character in Sox history, throwing two no-hitters andwinning 20 games twice. According to thebaseballpage.com, Smithbattled alcoholism and abandoned the Sox during the 1908 pennant raceafter a feud with manager Fielder Jones. Smith returned, but on thefinal day of the season, Jones pitched Doc White instead of a restedSmith and lost the game and the pennant to Detroit.

Worst April 18, 1991: Nice way to christen the new ballpark. TheDetroit Tigers handed it to the White Sox 16-0 at new Comiskey Park.The Sox won their first six games that season and were 6-1 when theygot blown out. Jack McDowell (left), who's tied with Billy Pierce forthe most Opening Day wins in Sox history at three, took the loss,giving up six earned runs in 2* innings. Frank Tanana went thedistance, yielding just seven hits, including two to Robin Ventura.

Most memorable April 16, 1940: There has been only one no-hitterthrown on Opening Day, and it happened at old Comiskey Park when theCleveland Indians' Bob Feller earned a 1-0 victory. Game-timetemperature was 35 degrees, and the 21-year-old Feller was working ontwo days of rest after pitching an exhibition game. Hall of FamerLuke Appling fouled off 15 pitches during one at-bat before beingretired. The Sox loaded the bases in the second, and Indians managerOssie Vitt had someone warming up, but Feller pitched out of the jam.

CUBS Opening Day record: 72-56-2 u Home openers 75-52-2

Last year April 8, 2005: Cubs fans might want to avoid readingthis recap. LaTroy Hawkins blew a one-run lead with two outs in theninth, and the Milwaukee Brewers pulled out a 6-3 victory in 12

innings. Kerry Wood threw 104 pitches in 5* innings despitelimited duty in Cactus League play because of inflammation in histhrowing shoulder. Corey Patterson was booed after striking out forthe third time. "Not a very good home opener," Dusty Baker said.

BEST April 6, 1971: How about this for a pitching duel? FergieJenkins picked up a 2-1 complete-game victory over the St. LouisCardinals in 10 innings, striking out seven without giving up a walk.Bob Gibson took the loss after also going the distance. BillyWilliams ended it with a homer. Some Cubs fans will mention TuffyRhodes hitting three homers off Dwight Gooden on

April 4, 1994, as the best opener, but it's not even close. A Hallof Fame slugger deciding a duel between two Hall of Fame pitchers isthe easy choice.

Worst April 12, 2004: So much for cleansing the palate after theplayoff collapse and Bartman game in '03. The Pittsburgh Pirates wona 13-2 rout as Greg Maddux

returned to Wrigley as a Cub and walked five, hit a batter andgave up eight hits and six runs in 3* innings. Bill Murray threw outthe first pitch, and he sailed one high over the backstop. Madduxwasn't much better. Kris Benson picked up the win.

MOST MEMORABLE

April 3, 1998: Forget the game itself, which the Cubs won 6-2 overthe Montreal Expos. The moment was defined by the Cubs taking thefield for the first time after Harry Caray's death, and Dutchie sang"Take Me Out to the Ball Game" to a packed house during the seventh-inning stretch. Afterward, she hugged grandson Chip, who was in hisfirst season in the Cubs' booth. Steve Stone reportedly was so chokedup that he

couldn't speak for several minutes. Hundreds of white and blueballoons were released as "Amazing Grace" played on the loudspeaker.

Chafee wins race in Rhode Island; Moderate Republican didn't even vote for Bush in 2004

Moderate Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, who hasbucked President Bush on tax cuts and the war in Iraq, defeated aconservative challenger Tuesday in a contest crucial to the largerfight for control of Congress.

With 72 percent of precincts reporting, Chafee was declared thewinner with 25,728 votes, or 55 percent, to Cranston Mayor SteveLaffey's 20,750 votes, or 45 percent.

The last big day of primaries before the November elections alsobrought intriguing Democratic contests for Senate in Maryland and aHouse seat in Minnesota. In all, nine states and the District ofColumbia voted, with the other states including Arizona, Delaware,New Hampshire, New York, Vermont and Wisconsin.

In New York, frontrunning Democrats swept aside primarychallengers - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton trounced an anti-warcandidate in her re-election bid, Attorney General Eliot Spitzercrushed his opposition for the Democratic nod for governor, andAndrew Cuomo easily won the party nomination for attorney general.

In Rhode Island, the importance of holding onto a GOP Senate seatbrought Laura Bush and the GOP establishment to campaign aroundChafee - even though he was the only Republican to vote against theresolution to use force against Iraq and he opposed the president'stax cuts. Chafee did not even vote for Bush in 2004 - instead writingin his father, George H.W. Bush.

With 18 percent of precincts reporting in Maryland for theDemocratic nomination for Senate, 20-year Rep. Ben Cardin was leadingKweisi Mfume, former head of the NAACP, with 44 percent of the voteto Mfume's 35 percent. Democratic Sen. Paul Sarbanes has announcedhis retirement.

The winner will face GOP Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who - if he won -would be the lone black Republican in the Senate.

In New York, Clinton beat challenger Jonathan Tasini with morethan 80 percent of the vote. She will face former Yonkers Mayor JohnSpencer.

Spitzer defeated Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi with more than80 percent of the vote. He will face GOP candidate John Faso, aformer legislative leader, in the fall.

District of Columbia voters choose City Council member Adrian M.Fenty in the mayoral primary. In heavily Democratic Washington, theprimary is tantamount to the general election.

In Vermont, Rep. Bernie Sanders won the Democratic nomination forSenate. Sanders, who plans to run as an independent, aims to win theseat of retiring Sen. James Jeffords, the Senate's lone independent.Three Republicans sought the GOP nomination, with businessman RichardTarrant leading in early returns.

Copyright 2003 by Telegraph-Herald, All rights Reserved.

Chafee wins race in Rhode Island; Moderate Republican didn't even vote for Bush in 2004

Moderate Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island, who hasbucked President Bush on tax cuts and the war in Iraq, defeated aconservative challenger Tuesday in a contest crucial to the largerfight for control of Congress.

With 72 percent of precincts reporting, Chafee was declared thewinner with 25,728 votes, or 55 percent, to Cranston Mayor SteveLaffey's 20,750 votes, or 45 percent.

The last big day of primaries before the November elections alsobrought intriguing Democratic contests for Senate in Maryland and aHouse seat in Minnesota. In all, nine states and the District ofColumbia voted, with the other states including Arizona, Delaware,New Hampshire, New York, Vermont and Wisconsin.

In New York, frontrunning Democrats swept aside primarychallengers - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton trounced an anti-warcandidate in her re-election bid, Attorney General Eliot Spitzercrushed his opposition for the Democratic nod for governor, andAndrew Cuomo easily won the party nomination for attorney general.

In Rhode Island, the importance of holding onto a GOP Senate seatbrought Laura Bush and the GOP establishment to campaign aroundChafee - even though he was the only Republican to vote against theresolution to use force against Iraq and he opposed the president'stax cuts. Chafee did not even vote for Bush in 2004 - instead writingin his father, George H.W. Bush.

With 18 percent of precincts reporting in Maryland for theDemocratic nomination for Senate, 20-year Rep. Ben Cardin was leadingKweisi Mfume, former head of the NAACP, with 44 percent of the voteto Mfume's 35 percent. Democratic Sen. Paul Sarbanes has announcedhis retirement.

The winner will face GOP Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who - if he won -would be the lone black Republican in the Senate.

In New York, Clinton beat challenger Jonathan Tasini with morethan 80 percent of the vote. She will face former Yonkers Mayor JohnSpencer.

Spitzer defeated Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi with more than80 percent of the vote. He will face GOP candidate John Faso, aformer legislative leader, in the fall.

District of Columbia voters choose City Council member Adrian M.Fenty in the mayoral primary. In heavily Democratic Washington, theprimary is tantamount to the general election.

In Vermont, Rep. Bernie Sanders won the Democratic nomination forSenate. Sanders, who plans to run as an independent, aims to win theseat of retiring Sen. James Jeffords, the Senate's lone independent.Three Republicans sought the GOP nomination, with businessman RichardTarrant leading in early returns.

Copyright 2003 by Telegraph-Herald, All rights Reserved.

Greece slams IMF, EU debt inspectors

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — An indignant Greece slammed EU and International Monetary Fund inspectors overseeing its efforts to reform its debt-crippled economy, accusing them Saturday of overstepping their role and interfering in Greece's internal affairs.

In an unusually harshly worded pre-dawn statement, government spokesman Giorgos Petalotis called the behavior of the inspectors at a Friday news conference unacceptable.

"We have needs, but we also have limits. And we do not negotiate the limits of our dignity with anyone," Petalotis said. "We take orders only from the Greek people."

It was the first time the government has publicly struck back at the IMF and the European Union, which rescued Greece from bankruptcy but at a price that many Greeks consider too harsh.

The IMF, the European Central Bank and the European Commission delegation said Greece must privatize €50 billion ($68 billion) in state assets and speed up structural reforms in the next few months to keep the country's troubled finances afloat. The IMF representative also said some of the frequent demonstrations against the Greek government's reforms were being carried out by groups angry at losing their "unfair advantages and privileges."

Friday's news conference led to quick outrage in sections of the Greek media, with one TV anchor describing the remarks as "unacceptable." But there was no government reaction until Petalotis' statement was issued shortly before 2 a.m.

"We asked them to help and we are fully honoring our commitments. But we didn't ask for anyone to intervene in our country's internal affairs," Petalotis said, adding the government would make clear that "everyone must understand their role."

Prime Minister George Papandreou expressed his dismay at the comments to IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn in a phone call Saturday, according to his office. The statement said Strauss-Kahn had called Papandreou, and that the prime minister had conveyed his government's message "regarding the unacceptable behavior" of the delegation.

The statement said "Strauss-Kahn expressed his understanding for the spirit of the prime minister's remarks and his respect toward the Greek government and the Greek people."

Papandreou's office said later in the day that the prime minister had also spoken with EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn by telephone, but did not disclose details of the discussion.

The opposition conservative party, however, struck back at the Socialist government, saying it was "too late for false tears," and that the government's "post-midnight theatrical performance is a farce."

Greece's economy is under strict supervision as part of a €110 billion ($149 billion) bailout loan package from the IMF and the other European Union countries that use the euro — funds that saved Greece from defaulting on its mountain of debt last May.

In return, the government has been pushing through stringent and unpopular reforms, cutting public sector salaries and pensions, increasing taxes and overhauling labor laws. The austerity program has prompted labor unions to stage a series of strikes and demonstrations.

Batches of the loan are released every quarter, before which representatives from the IMF, the EC and the ECB visit Athens to review progress.

On Friday, the representatives, dubbed the 'troika,' said Greece must privatize €50 billion ($68 billion) in state assets — seven times larger than a target set only three months ago — and speed up structural reforms.

IMF mission chief Poul Thomsen scoffed at a suggestion that Greece might sell its ancient monuments to raise money, but argued "the mismanagement of public property is a major source of waste" in Greece.

He also said Greece's long-term reforms were being "fiercely tested by vested interests" like truck drivers and pharmacists who work in closed industries the government was trying to open up.

"I'm not surprised that these groups are protesting but I'm also convinced ... that the Greek population see it for what it is: an attempt to preserve their unfair advantages and privileges," he said.

Greek national debt is set to exceed 150 percent of GDP this year.

Privatization targets are likely to include state companies not listed on the stock market and the development of public land, including Olympic facilities that have languished since the Athens Games in 2004. Greece will seek €15 billion ($20 billion) in privatization and real estate development this year alone, according to Finance Ministry officials.

Petalotis said the government had frequently spoken of the need to better utilize state property, but stressed that any such program would have to be done transparently and "in no case means the sale of public land."

"It is equally obvious that only the Greek government is able to take these decisions," he said.

___

Derek Gatopoulos and Demetris Nellas contributed to this report.

вторник, 6 марта 2012 г.

The Zeitgeist Checklist BY DANA MILBANK

A FOUL WHIFF OF FREEDOM

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

1Middle East. Something is spreading in the region, and it isn'tdemocracy. White House blames Iran and Syria for Hezbollah raid intoIsrael, which bombs Beirut airport, Lebanese bases and TV station.While Israel also fights Hamas in Gaza and rockets reach Haifa,President Bush vows to send Iran's nuke program to the SecurityCouncil. Does a regional apocalypse loom? Oil: $78 a barrel. Gas:Fuhgedaboudit.

CRUEL: MORE UNUSUAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

2War on Terrorism. Bush's moves to give Geneva Convention rightsto terrorism detainees and to subject his warrantless wiretappingprogram to court review are seen on the Hill as major caves.Meantime, judicial nomination of Pentagon counsel William Haynesfounders over his role in torture memos. Has Congress found itsnerve? Don't count on it: A forum at the center-right AmericanEnterprise Institute finds that Congress is at its wimpiest and mostdysfunctional in more than a century.

NEXT TIME WE'LL REALLY, REALLY MEAN IT

Last week: 1 Weeks on list: 3

3North Korea. Kim Jong Il appears to have called the U.S. bluffsuccessfully. The United States and Japan pushed for a resolutionwith teeth -- but China and Russia agree to sign on only afterremoving mandatory sanctions for noncompliance.

ALL TERRORISM IS LOCAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

4Homeland Security. India blames Kashmir rebels for bombs ontrains in Mumbai (ne Bombay), but Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York andWashington, taking no chances, step up mass-transit security. SenateRepublicans join the Bush administration in concluding N.Y. and D.C.are not in harm's way: The chamber knocks down an attempt to restore$750 million in anti-terrorism money taken from the two for the likesof Omaha. Internal review finds DHS thinks a mule festival, ice-cream parlor and kangaroo conservation center are all criticalterrorism targets.

HE'S NO JUDY MILLER

Last week: 4 Weeks on list: 3

5Scandal. Bob Novak, whose column about Valerie Plame and JoeWilson started the CIA leak case, confesses that he outed his sourcesto Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. Further indictments areunlikely -- but Wilson tries to keep hope alive by filing a lawsuitagainst Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

CRIME EMERGENCY

Last week: 2 Weeks on list: 3

6Iraq. In observance of a visit by Defense Secretary DonaldRumsfeld, the sectarian violence spreads to horrendous new levels, asscores are killed in one of the bloodiest weeks yet. Iraqi PrimeMinister Nouri al-Maliki announces a trip to Washington later thismonth, but we have our own problems: Police Chief Charles Ramseydeclares a "crime emergency" because of 14 killings this month androbberies on the Mall.

CHILLING EFFECT

Last week: 7 Weeks on list: 2

7Democrats. Court gives Congress -- not to mention Rep. WilliamJefferson (D-La.) -- the cold shoulder, deciding it was okay forthe administration to search Jefferson's office after $90,000 inalleged bribe money was found in his freezer. Bad for House GOPleadership's balance-of-power claims; good for GOP midterm campaigns.

TUBES AND TRUCKS

Last week: 9 Weeks on list: 2

8Technology. The tech world is fascinated by Chris Anderson's book"The Long Tail" about how Internet retailers are spurring a revivalof niche products. But Washington, sans Al Gore, isn't so savvy. TheHouse votes to crack down on online gambling. And Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) announces at a hearing that the Internet is "not a big truck"but a "series of tubes." Further, he discloses, "an Internet was sentby my staff at 10 o'clock in the morning on Friday and I got ityesterday."

NOW WHERE IS THAT VETO STAMP?

Last week: 8 Weeks on list: 3

9Culture wars. Bush has been in office for 51/2 years withoutvetoing a single piece of legislation. But he has threatened to vetolegislation that would expand federal support for stem-cell research.The House has already passed a bill defying Bush, and the Senate willtake it up this week after overcoming reluctance to debate a socialissue that favors Democrats.

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Last week: 6 Weeks on list: 3

10Economy. Stocks plunge over oil fears, while Bush gets littlecredit for a bullish budget forecast. Everybody plays down thecrowing after economists friendly to Bush call a lower deficitforecast the result of earlier inflated forecasts. A reminder thatMedicare and Social Security are going bust comes in paragraph 31 ofBush's 39-paragraph East Room speech.

The Zeitgeist Checklist BY DANA MILBANK

A FOUL WHIFF OF FREEDOM

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

1Middle East. Something is spreading in the region, and it isn'tdemocracy. White House blames Iran and Syria for Hezbollah raid intoIsrael, which bombs Beirut airport, Lebanese bases and TV station.While Israel also fights Hamas in Gaza and rockets reach Haifa,President Bush vows to send Iran's nuke program to the SecurityCouncil. Does a regional apocalypse loom? Oil: $78 a barrel. Gas:Fuhgedaboudit.

CRUEL: MORE UNUSUAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

2War on Terrorism. Bush's moves to give Geneva Convention rightsto terrorism detainees and to subject his warrantless wiretappingprogram to court review are seen on the Hill as major caves.Meantime, judicial nomination of Pentagon counsel William Haynesfounders over his role in torture memos. Has Congress found itsnerve? Don't count on it: A forum at the center-right AmericanEnterprise Institute finds that Congress is at its wimpiest and mostdysfunctional in more than a century.

NEXT TIME WE'LL REALLY, REALLY MEAN IT

Last week: 1 Weeks on list: 3

3North Korea. Kim Jong Il appears to have called the U.S. bluffsuccessfully. The United States and Japan pushed for a resolutionwith teeth -- but China and Russia agree to sign on only afterremoving mandatory sanctions for noncompliance.

ALL TERRORISM IS LOCAL

Last week: -- Weeks on list: 1

4Homeland Security. India blames Kashmir rebels for bombs ontrains in Mumbai (ne Bombay), but Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York andWashington, taking no chances, step up mass-transit security. SenateRepublicans join the Bush administration in concluding N.Y. and D.C.are not in harm's way: The chamber knocks down an attempt to restore$750 million in anti-terrorism money taken from the two for the likesof Omaha. Internal review finds DHS thinks a mule festival, ice-cream parlor and kangaroo conservation center are all criticalterrorism targets.

HE'S NO JUDY MILLER

Last week: 4 Weeks on list: 3

5Scandal. Bob Novak, whose column about Valerie Plame and JoeWilson started the CIA leak case, confesses that he outed his sourcesto Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. Further indictments areunlikely -- but Wilson tries to keep hope alive by filing a lawsuitagainst Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby.

CRIME EMERGENCY

Last week: 2 Weeks on list: 3

6Iraq. In observance of a visit by Defense Secretary DonaldRumsfeld, the sectarian violence spreads to horrendous new levels, asscores are killed in one of the bloodiest weeks yet. Iraqi PrimeMinister Nouri al-Maliki announces a trip to Washington later thismonth, but we have our own problems: Police Chief Charles Ramseydeclares a "crime emergency" because of 14 killings this month androbberies on the Mall.

CHILLING EFFECT

Last week: 7 Weeks on list: 2

7Democrats. Court gives Congress -- not to mention Rep. WilliamJefferson (D-La.) -- the cold shoulder, deciding it was okay forthe administration to search Jefferson's office after $90,000 inalleged bribe money was found in his freezer. Bad for House GOPleadership's balance-of-power claims; good for GOP midterm campaigns.

TUBES AND TRUCKS

Last week: 9 Weeks on list: 2

8Technology. The tech world is fascinated by Chris Anderson's book"The Long Tail" about how Internet retailers are spurring a revivalof niche products. But Washington, sans Al Gore, isn't so savvy. TheHouse votes to crack down on online gambling. And Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) announces at a hearing that the Internet is "not a big truck"but a "series of tubes." Further, he discloses, "an Internet was sentby my staff at 10 o'clock in the morning on Friday and I got ityesterday."

NOW WHERE IS THAT VETO STAMP?

Last week: 8 Weeks on list: 3

9Culture wars. Bush has been in office for 51/2 years withoutvetoing a single piece of legislation. But he has threatened to vetolegislation that would expand federal support for stem-cell research.The House has already passed a bill defying Bush, and the Senate willtake it up this week after overcoming reluctance to debate a socialissue that favors Democrats.

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Last week: 6 Weeks on list: 3

10Economy. Stocks plunge over oil fears, while Bush gets littlecredit for a bullish budget forecast. Everybody plays down thecrowing after economists friendly to Bush call a lower deficitforecast the result of earlier inflated forecasts. A reminder thatMedicare and Social Security are going bust comes in paragraph 31 ofBush's 39-paragraph East Room speech.