Friday, April 17, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
AUSTIN, Texas -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry fired up an anti-tax "tea party" Wednesday with his stance against the federal government and for states' rights as some in his U.S. flag-waving audience shouted, "Secede!"
An animated Perry told the crowd at Austin City Hall -- one of three tea parties he was attending across the state -- that officials in Washington have abandoned the country's founding principles of limited government. He said the federal government is strangling Americans with taxation, spending and debt.
Perry repeated his running theme that Texas' economy is in relatively good shape compared with other states and with the "federal budget mess." Many in the crowd held signs deriding President Barack Obama and the $786 billion federal economic stimulus package.
CONCORD, N.H. — A committee of the New Hampshire State Senate plunged Wednesday into the escalating debate over same-sex marriage, hearing hours of discordant testimony on whether the state should become the fifth to allow it.
The state's House of Representatives narrowly approved a bill last month that would legalize marriage for same-sex couples, and the public hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee came on the heels of victories for same-sex marriage in Iowa and Vermont. But with the full Senate preparing to vote on the measure as soon as next week, its chances remain uncertain.
With Gov. David A. Paterson set to introduce a same-sex marriage bill to state lawmakers Thursday, activists differ on whether the effort from an unpopular executive will help the cause of marriage equality.
The issue will hinge on whether Paterson and his allies can win the votes of enough Republican state senators to offset opposition from conservative Democrats such as Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. of the Bronx.
Alan Van Cappelle, executive director of Empire State Pride Agenda, a gay-rights group, didn't directly answer questions about whether failure in the Senate following Paterson's high-profile support would constitute a setback for the same-sex marriage movement. "We are closer than people think, but we're not there yet," Van Cappelle said.
After Vermont and Iowa legalized gay marriage this month, New York could add to the momentum or halt it, said Suffolk County Legis. Jon Cooper (D-Lloyd Harbor).
"It doesn't make sense to bring it to a vote and have it fail," said Cooper, who has plans to marry his longtime partner in Connecticut on April 29. "It could potentially have national implications - the opponents of same-sex marriage could say even in liberal New York, this couldn't pass."
It is not my business. It is not your business. It is not society's business. It is the business of the two adults, men, women, man & woman, and that's the end of it.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
HAVANA, April 15 (Xinhua) -- The decision by the U.S. government to change its strategy and lift some restrictions on Cuba have aroused multiple reactions in the island, among which there are hopes of a start to the end of the decades-old economic blockade.
On Easter Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama lifted restrictions on travel and money transfers to Cuba, opening a crack in a 47-year-old embargo against Havana.
Obama also authorized U.S. telecommunication firms to open up investments in Cuba, as well as to hire radio and television satellite services for people in the Caribbean nation.
The new measures overturned the policy imposed in 2004 by the Bush White House. The "Transition Plan toward a Free Cuba," also know as Plan Bush, limited money remittances from Cuban Americans to their families to 300 U.S. dollars every quarter, and visits to the island once every three years with each lasting no longer than14 days.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Marilyn Chambers, the angelic-looking, blue-eyed blond who symbolized purity while selling laundry detergent then went on to become one of the first mainstream porn superstars, died Sunday in her Los Angeles home. She was 56.
The Westport, Conn.-born actress was found by her 17-year-old daughter, McKenna Marie Taylor.An autopsy will be done but no foul play is suspected.