INS hassles Honduran hurricane victims?

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Hondurans stranded in the US when a devastating hurricane blasted their homeland’s coast last October were supposed to have gotten the small compensation of being allowed to live and work in the US for 18 months, thanks to a presidential order. But the Immigration and Naturalization Service is only adding to the Hondurans’ troubles, two national advocacy groups charge. According to a federal class action lawsuit recently filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, the INS has “consistently delayed or denied work authorization in direct violation of federal law” to thousands of qualifying Hondurans.…


LA brings Net to city’s homeless

Nov. 18

Whether it comes from a public terminal in the Los Angeles Central Library or a shelter, Internet access has become a boon to some homeless in the City of Angels, reports the LA TIMES. Virtual reality removes the stigma of homelessness in job searches, or, for the more web-savvy, online entrepreneurism.

One man got himself electronically accepted to Cal State with a generous financial aid package. Another set up a successful business selling bicycle parts online. To find out more about starting from scratch on the Web, follow the link below.…


Killer thrifting

Nov. 17

You’re in your favorite Salvation Army store, eyeing that fine pre-owned polyester pantsuit. You’re thinking you’re going to save a few bucks and cop a cool low-cost look. Little do you realize you could be making a fatal mistake.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that most of the thousands of secondhand shops across the U.S. are selling items that have been recalled or banned for posing potentially lethal safety hazards. Electrocuting hairdryers, fire-starting floor lamps and kid-killing cribs are among the prime offenders. Watch out also for bad bean bag chairs and, of course, lawn darts. Moral: Buy retail.


Banjo frog: Miracle worker or wildlife killer?

Nov. 16

New Zealand officials are trying to eradicate what may be — according to at least one researcher — a unique treatment for cancer, SCOOP’s John Howard reports.

Officials from New Zealand’s Ministry of Agriculture and Department of Conservation are on the hunt for the Australian eastern banjo frog — an unwelcome invader that authorities want to eliminate because, they say, it poses a serious threat to the country’s wildlife.

But Paul Wabnitz, a South Australian chemistry researcher, says the frogs possess an abundance of rare, cancer-fighting chemicals in their skin. Known as peptides, the chemicals are currently being investigated by the Anti-Cancer Institute in Washington D.C.

“The number of commercially viable compounds we’ve been able to find [in this frog’s skin] is amazing,” Wabnitz said.


Israel’s media wars turn deadly

Nov. 15

You think the media conglomerates in America are bad … try Israel. In the race to secure subscribers for their competing newspapers, staffers at Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel’s biggest paper, and its rival Ma’ariv, have been charged with planting wiretaps to spy on one another, according to the CANADIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION. And that was when they were playing nice.

Ofer Nimrodi (his real name), publisher of Ma’ariv is now being investigated for conspiracy to murder executives at two other Israeli newspapers. The petulant publisher’s alleged tactics to stymie police investigators have been equally unsubtle: Nimrodi is also charged with conspiring to kill a police witness, has put one of the cops on his own payroll, and has even been videotaped eating pages from his police file while in custody.…


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