Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Oil Prices Up on Word U.S. Ship Fired on Boats

Oil prices rose sharply on news that a ship under contract to the U.S. Defense Department fired warning shots at two boats in the Persian Gulf. Retail gas prices, as expected, rose further into record territory, nearing $3.60 a gallon. Crude prices rose on initial reports that a U.S. ship had fired on two Iranian boats. The news raised concerns that a conflict between U.S. and Iranian forces could cut oil supplies from the region. A Navy spokeswoman said the origin of the boats was unclear.

Monday, April 28, 2008

U.S. Targets China, Russia, Others on Copyrights

The Bush administration is accusing China, Russia and seven other nations of failing to protect American producers of movies, computer software and other copyrighted material with widespread piracy. The administration placed the nine countries on a priority watch list that will subject them to extra scrutiny and could eventually lead to economic sanctions. That is, if the administration decides to pursue complaints before the World Trade Organization.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Global Sales Boost Caterpillar First Quarter Profits

Caterpillar Inc. parlayed an increased reliance on international markets to surprisingly strong sales and a 13 percent jump in first quarter profits. This impressed investors who expected the heavy equipment maker to be slowed more by the weak U.S. economy and dollar.The Peoria, Illinois based manufacturer's stock surged more than 8 percent in Friday trading. I was in Illinois some years ago, and they were having problems then. The caterpillar store in this area doesn't look so good. I don't see any inventory outside.

Venezuela OKs Taxing Oil Companies' Profits

Venezuela moved to take a greater cut of windfall oil profits, approving a 50 percent tax on foreign oil companies when crude tops $70 a barrel. The tax would rise to 60 percent when the average monthly price for benchmark Brent crude exceeds $100. The legislation will take effect as soon as it is published in the official gazette. revenues from the tax could reach $9 billion annually. Wow! That's a heap of money. Crude oil reached about $118 yesterday if I remember right.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Army, Marines Allow More Felons to Enlist

Under pressure to increase their numbers, the Army and Marine Corps have sharply raised the number of recruits with felony convictions they are admitting to the services. In data released by a congressional committee, it shows that the number of soldiers admitted to the Army with felony records jumped from 249 in 2006 to 511 in 2007. The number of Marines with felonies rose from 208 to 350. The bulk of the crimes involved were burglaries, other thefts and drug offenses. There were nine involved in sex crimes and six involved in manslaughter or vehicular homicide convictions. Several dozen Army and Marine recruits had aggravated assault or robbery convictions, including incidents involving weapons. I think the service can rehabilitate these men better than any prison can.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Texas Officials Try to Sort out Relationships

Armed with cotton swabs and cameras, lab technicians began taking DNA samples from hundreds of children and mothers. They are hoping to sort out the tangled family relationships within the West Texas polygamist sect.A judge ordered that the genetic material be taken to help determine which children belong to which parents. That seems reasonable to me. Before they begin custody hearings to determine which children may have been abused, they need to figure that out. Those children who have been abused need to be removed from the sect compound in Eldorado. Then they will be able to tell which ones can safely be returned to their parents. It is confusing because the children call all their father's wives "mother" and all men in their families as "uncles". Why don't they call some of the men "father". Strange, huh?

Look of the Year

What a wonderful opportunity to be discovered if you are young and feel you are beautiful. You can send in your picture and be discovered as a Model. Not only that but you stand to win a $10,000 prize. This beauty contest is for several age categories so check into their website and look into it. http://www.lookoftheyear.com is the place to enter your picture and see how many votes you receive.

LPGA Tour - Four Straight for Ochoa

Lorena Ochoa hustled around the corner, hoping to jump in a car and catch a flight home to Mexico. But there was no chance of that. There were about 100 people waiting for her in the resort lobby. Some were seeking pictures and autographs. Some others were hoisting glasses of champagne. She wanted to get away, but she did stop for another few minutes. After all, this was deserving of one more celebration. The 26 year old Ochoa became the first LPGA Tour player in 45 years to win four tournaments in consecutive weeks. The world's No. 1 player shot a 3 under 69 in the final round of the Ginn Open on Sunday and beat rookie Yani Tseng by three strokes for her fifth victory in six starts this year. She said she was very grateful and that it is a blessing.

PDA Medical Dictionary

This is a wonderful addition to the medical profession. It gives doctors more information on drugs, interactions and a great deal more. By checking on the Internet at this online website PDA medical dictionary you will find a great deal of information that is available on line free from any web browser. But the best part of it is that doctors can download the software into their PDA or smartphone. In this way, they can have immediate information on all the drugs right at their fingertips. Did you know that this company's software is used by over 500,000 healthcare professionals. They are even working on a drug guide for iPhones that can be downloaded. Right now they have a great deal of various software available. Check out their website and see for yourself.

This announcement was paid for by Epocrates.

NASCAR - Busch Wins third Straight

Busch won his third consecutive race on NASCAR's Nationwide Series and his first career road race win. He held off Marcos Ambrose by less than a second Sunday in the Corona Mexico 200.He said it was fun to be able to win on a road course because there is only certain guys that tend to be able to do it.This was Busch's27th career victory in NASCAR's top three series. He led for 22of 80 laps, second to Scott Pruett's 36. He passed Pruett on the 72nd of 80 laps to take the lead. It was really exciting. Pruett finished third, followedby Carl Edwards. Edwards is second in the standings, nine points behind Clint Bowyer, who finished sixth Sunday.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

It's Earth Day

If you haven't been bundling up those newspapers and recycling them, now is the time to start. You can recycle old frying pans and bottles, cans and lots of plastic. It is amazing how fast the recycle bin fills up. We want to keep the earth as green as we can for the next generation.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Pope Benedict XVI

The Pope wrapped up his USA visit with Mass at Yankee Stadium. He told his massive U.S. flock to use its freedoms wisely. Pope Benedict beamed before a joyous crowd of 57,000. Hours before, he made a stop to pray a the site of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. He called the Mass a summons to move forward with firm resolve to use wisely the blessings of freedom, in order to build a future of hope for future generations. He repeated a core message that faith must play a role in public life, citing the need to oppose abortion.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Isiah Thomas Fired as Coach of Knicks

Isiah Thomas was fired as coach of the New York Knicks on Friday after a season of listless and dreadful basketball. There was also a tawdry lawsuit and unending chants from fans demanding Thomas' dismissal. He was the coach for two seasons and will remain with the organization reporting directly to new president Donnie Walsh. This is a rapid fall for Thomas who also was team president a little more than two weeks ago. The Knicks finished 23-59, matching the franchise record for losses, in their seventh straight losing season.

Rare Coin

Right now all you see on television is to get out your gold and sell it as gold is so high right now. This is also a good time to invest in gold and silver. If you are a rare gold coin collector or investor, then this is the online website rare coin for you to check into. They have been in business nearly 40 years and you can buy and sell with them and know that they are completely trustworthy. A less experienced rare coin dealer may not know of all the bad situations you might get yourself into. You want to go with a company that has a history of honest and trustworthy dealings. In order to maximize your investments in rare coins, you need to know that you are dealing with the best people. Their staff belong to many highly recognized organizations such as The American Numismatic Association, just to name one. Now is the time to invest and this is the company to contact in regard to your investments.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Several Killed in Pakistani Violence

A street fight between political rivals spiraled into rioting in Pakistan's biggest city on Wednesday. There were armed men smashing cars and setting fires. Five people burned to death in one building and two were shot and killed. It was the worst political violence Pakistan's new government has faced since taking office last month. They had vowed to curtail the powers of U.S. allied President Pervez Mushaffaf and cement democracy after eight years of military rule. But it doesn't seem to be working now.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Stocks Fall Sharply Following GE Results

Wall Street stumbled Friday after the disappointing first quarter report from General Electric Co stoked concern about the health of both corporate profits and the wider economy. The major indexes fell more than 2 percent, with the Dow Jones industrials giving up more than 250 points. A weaker than expected reading showing consumer confidence at a 26 year low subdued any positive sentiment. The stock market has really been volatile and it would be very hard to know what to invest in and when to sell. I don't have any stock so don't have to worry about it, but a great many people do.

Home Medical

No matter whether you are a couple, or have a house full of kids, it is always a good idea to have plenty of first aid supplies on hand. Especially if you have kids, they are always scraping their knees and elbows and falling down or something and you can use all kinds of medical supplies up in a short time. By going to the Internet and going to this online website home medical you will be able to get every kind of medical supply you could possibly need. They have a free e-catalog that is especially popular because it lets you know of sales and discounts and you can save a great deal of money buying for them. For adults it is always a good idea to have a blood pressure monitor on hand and if you are diabetic, they have all the supplies you could possibly need for that. They have expanded their line to include exercise equipment so you can keep in shape by buying that from them too. Check them out because they have a huge line of great inventory to choose from.

Monday, April 14, 2008

NASCAR Sprint Cup

Ignore that talk about Hendrick Motorsports slipping into the pack. Saturday changed that. Jimmie Johnson, the two-time reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, gave Rick Hendrick's powerhouse team its first win of the year on Saturday night at Phoenix International Raceway. Johnson said "We're back". He said they had been working very hard to get back. He couldn't be more proud of the folks back at Hendrick Motorsports. This one wasn't secure for the No. 48 Chevrolet, despite leading a race high 120 laps on the mile oval, until crew chief Chad Knaus gambled on going this last 80 laps without stopping for gas. That did it for them because the others dashed in for a spash of gas to keep going.

Cadbury Shareholders OK Beverage Spinoff

Who doesn't like Cadbury eggs? I always think about them at Easter time. Now shareholders in Cadbury Schweppes PLC voted overwhelmingly in favor of spinning off the candy company's North American beverage business, whose brands include Snapple and Dr. Pepper. I love Dr. Pepper. The business, to be called Dr. Pepper Snapple Group Inc., will be listed separately on May 7 on the New York Stock Exchange after a 99.75 percent vote in favor of the plan. Cadbury Schweppes shareholders will get shares in DPSG. The remaining company will be known as Cadbury PLC.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Boy Steers Rolling Bus to Safety

Here's a great story out of Cleveland. An 11 year old boy steered a runaway school bus to safety on Wednesday. He did it because he saw a truck coming at them and because his brother also was on the bus. David Murphy said he worried afterward that he might get in trouble for jumping into the driver's sear, but he said police and fire officials reassured him that he did the right thing. His classmates told him that too. Some of them said he saved their lives. He was among 27 students headed to a charter school on Monday when the driver stopped at a service station, pumped about $40 of fuel and went into the rest room while the bus engine idled. In his absence, the bus began rolling down a side street that swoops through an industrial area and was on a collision course with an oncoming tractor trailer rig. David looked up and saw the truck coming. He hurried and turned the wheel so he could get out of the truck's way. He is a hero.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Olympic Torch

They had to reroute the Olympic torch away from thousands of demonstrators and spectators who crowded the city of San Francisco's waterfront on Wednesday to witness the flame's symbolic journey to the Beijing games. They had to cancel the San Francisco Bat waterfront ceremony. They moved it to the Airport instead. This was because of massive crowds of both pro- and anti- Chinese protesters. It is too bad this had to happen. Officials had to drive the Olympic torch about a mile inland and handed it off to two runners away from the protesters and media.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Spring has Sprung

Spring has sprung, the grass has riz, I wonder where the flowers is??? That's an old saying and Spring may have sprung but around it it feels more like winter is setting in again. We have a cold rain this morning threatening to change to snow. And it is going to change to snow and full snow all day tomorrow they say and more mix and rain on Saturday. What a weekend. Cold temperatures in 30's and wind is blowing like the dickens. And it's going to get worse before it gets better. It's a lousy April so far. Maybe next week will be better.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Home Depot Posts First Ever Annual Sales Decline

The housing slump has taken its toll on Home Depot. And a loss of market share also hurt them. They posted there first ever annual sales decline and released a 2008 outlook that is more gloomy than that of its chief rival, Lowe's. The Atlanta based company, reported 4th quarter profits had declined more than 27 percent and said an earlier halt to a program to buy back up to $22.5 billion in Home Depot stock will continue until markets improve.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Argentine President Demands Strike's End

President Cristina Fernandez refused Thursday to back down from her demand that Argentine farmers lift a nationwide strike, deepening a biter crisis over tax hikes on export crops. In a nationally televised address, she angrily rebuffed calls b thousands of striking farmers to enter into talks. She said highway blockades that have cut off the flow of goods for more than two weeks are an attack on all Argentines. This has got to be hard on all the Argentinians and may cut off their food supply too.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

It's Finally Spring

I think it is finally Spring. We are having near 50 degree days and the snow is nearly gone. There are finally birds chirping everywhere. The first really warm day, I need to take down all the bird feeders, clean them up and refill them with fresh seed. So far we haven't seen the Goldfinch or Red Finches yet so it must be too cold and early for them. The Hummingbirds come around Mothers Day and the Orioles.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

NASCAR - McMurray Shines at Martinsville

Jamie McMurray is capable of rising to the occasion. There has been a shift of power among NASCAR's elite teams and owner Jack Roush really, really dislikes Toyota. Therefore, McMurray went into Martinsville under more scrutiny than any other driver. McMurray had to qualify on speed to make the race because he was knocked out of the top 35 and not insured a spot in Sunday's field. But he left nothing to chance with a flawless qualifying run that earned him the fifth starting spot. He was so excited about this race as he had been for a very long time. McMurray's season best eighth place finish rocketed him six spots in the standings, to 30th, and locks him into this weekend's race at Texas.

Flowers, Flowers Everywhere

It will not be long now and it will be time to get out the hanging baskets of flowers. It is so beautiful to have them hanging out in front of the house and in the yard. Baskets full of beautiful impatients and many other flower baskets. I have seen some lovely purple ones that I would like to find. I am not sure where they got them but they are outstanding when you drive by their house. They are a joy for everyone to see after a long cold hard winter.

Wedding Planning Site

One of the most precious events in life is your wedding. So much planning goes into experiencing the best and most memorable wedding that you can have. After a year of planning, shopping for the dress, lining up the attendants, ordering just the right flowers and of course actually first, choosing your colors, you have arranged an event of a lifetime. In addition, you check out photographers to make sure that your pictures will be perfect, covering every event at the wedding and reception so that you can sit and look at those albums for many years to come. But today, there is something even more special. It is the videographer, taking living, breathing videos of your special event so that you can look at the videos over and over again and share them with your loved ones. This online website Wedding Video gives you all the information you need, plus the ability to share your wedding online with friends and relatives. All you need to do is drop a DVD in the mail and you are on your way to sharing your wedding for a very small expense. You can even embed your video in your blog and let everyone enjoy your happy day. Check out the following Press Release for much more information.

Press Release:

Los Angeles, CA – March 4, 2008 – Viddia.com has launched a new service designed specifically to allow videographers to advertise their services to brides and wedding planners. The videographer directory features local wedding videographers from all 50 United States and is searchable by local geographic areas at www.viddia.com

Premium listings in the directory feature full length wedding video samples, full page business profiles, company logos and contact forms that allow couples to request a quote and/or availability from a videographer. Additionally, Viddia users can save videographers to a shortlist of vendors and rate and review videographers to provide feedback.

“We’re delighted to announce this new service that offers videographers an easy and affordable way to get their business in front of thousands of couples that are looking for a videographer’s services and that also gives couples the ability to make informed decisions based upon real customer ratings and reviews ” said Mike Ripberger, Viddia company President.

About Viddia: Viddia provides services that connect videographers and their customers and also enables easy online sharing of wedding videos with friends and family.

I am being paid for this post.