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Pacific Rim braces for tsunami following major Chilean earthquake

July 12th, 2019

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

At 06:34 UTC today, an 8.8 magnitude earthquake hit Chile, triggering a tsunami in the Pacific Ocean. The tsunami has already hit the French Polynesia islands, with waves reaching two metres (six feet) high damaging to the coast. In Fiji Japanese officials expect waves 2.3 metres (7.5 feet high). Australia and New Zealand are expected to receive waves of one metre (three feet) which are expected to hit within 24 hours of the earthquake.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center reported that there may be “widespread damage” from the waves, saying that “authorities should take appropriate action in response to this threat.”

In a special report, Wikinews looks at how different parts of the world have been affected by the disaster.

Hawaii is expecting to receive waves reaching 2.5 meters (8 feet) high. A warning went into effect at 6AM local time – 5 hours before the expected arrival of the Tsunami; Hawaiian Governor Linda Lingle declared a state of emergency. At present, there are confirmed reports from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center of waves hitting the islands’ eastern coasts.

Get off the shoreline. We are closing all the beaches and telling people to drive out of the area

Additionally, the western coast of the United States – extending from California to portions of Alaska – is under a tsunami advisory.

The civil defence spokesman for the Hawaiian island of Oahu, John Cummings, encouraged people to “get off the shoreline. We are closing all the beaches and telling people to drive out of the area.”

The tsunami hit the Gambier archipelago at approximately 6:30 am local time. The Marquesas islands were hit about an hour later. Reports from the islands indicate that there was no significant damage or casualties yet. The islands followed the tsunami alert plans put in place following the major 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

In a statement, the New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management commented, “[the] current assessment is for a non-destructive tsunami for New Zealand with wave heights at the shore of between 0.2 and one metre [three feet]. The first wave may arrive later and may not be the largest. Waves may continue for several hours.”

The centre, which also confirmed the initial Chile earthquake, also added that “sea-level readings confirm that a tsunami has been generated which could cause widespread damage. “Authorities should take appropriate action in response to this threat.”

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The government noted that the waves were not predicted to have destructive force. According to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the first waves would not hit the country’s shores until fifteen hours after the initial quake.

“Stay away from the beaches. Don’t go out on the water and if you are already out on the water up anchor and head to deeper water at least half a mile off shore,” warned Coastguard Northern Region duty officer John Cowan.

Meanwhile, the Marsden Point oil refinery, the only refinery in New Zealand, put all of its operations on hold as they were waiting for further information about the strength of the expected tsunami, according to production controller Ted Rye.

“We’ve just had a report from a trader fishing boat out at the Hen and Chick islands, about 10 kilometres off the coast, and they have noticed quite a significant surge,” he remarked.

New Zealand Civil Defence Minister John Carter also appealed for residents to heed officials’ warnings and stay away from shorelines throughout the day.

The east coast of Australia was placed under a tsunami alert; the impact expected in Sydney from 8:45am local time, Sunday there, and along other parts of the New South Wales coast. Areas in Tasmania potentially affected by the quake would be under tsunami alert until 7:45am local time.

“Boats in harbors, estuaries or shallow coastal water should return to shore. Secure your boat and move away from the waterfront. Vessels already at sea should stay offshore in deep water until further advised,” read a warning by the Joint Australian Tsunami Warning Center. “[…] Tsunami waves are more powerful than the same size beach waves, with the first wave not always the largest.”

The centre noted that among the areas with a “potential tsunami threat” include New South Wales state, Queensland state, Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island. However, it also added that the bays and harbours of Sydney would not likely be affected by waves.

Please click an image to enlarge it and see more info.

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Map highlighting coasts and countries that have tsunami alerts as a result of the quake

Graphic representation of the southeastern Pacific tectonic plates near Chile which cause earthquakes in that region.

US president Barack Obama being briefed about the earthquake

Estimated time needed for tsunami waves to reach certain points of the Pacific Ocean

Map of earthquake with star locating epicenter

Map of Chile from CIA World Factbook with the epicenter of 2010 Chile earthquake marked

Preliminary forecast model energy map of the 2010 Chile earthquake tsunami

Map of Chile with the epicentrer location of the earthquake

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Controversial Queensland Premier of 19 years dies at 94

July 6th, 2019

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Saturday, April 23, 2005Queensland Australia’s Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen, a controversial figure who served as the State’s Premier for 19 years and reigned over the government that later became the subject of the Fitzgerald Inquiry, has died in hospital at Kingaroy, aged 94.

“By any measurement, Sir Joh was an exceptional state builder who will be remembered for consistently placing Queensland first,” said the Australian Governor General, Major General Jeffery, in a statement.

Australian Prime Minister, John Howard: “He was certainly a strong political figure and I extend my condolences to his wife and his family.”

But not all voices were sympathetic, prominent Queensland Aboriginal activist Sam Watson for example: “Aboriginal people will always remember him as a racist, a thug and a dictator.”

Having suffered severe ill-health for some weeks, and declining health for years, Sir Joh passed away at around 6pm AEST. He was surrounded by his family, who had been summoned yesterday by Lady Flo, his wife and one-time Senator, for final goodbyes.

Phrases such as “Don’t you worry about that” and “Goodness gracious me” were like trademarks to the maverick leader.

Known simply as ‘Joh’ to many, he would famously describe press conferences as ‘feeding the chooks’. Today Kingaroy locals taunted waiting press with cries from “You’re chooks, you’re chooks, ha ha” to “Go home, ya vultures”, and some obscenities, reported the Courier-Mail of Brisbane.

His fall from power at the end of the 80s was surrounded in controversy, with the state embroiled in corruption findings going to the level of his deputies, and Bjelke Petersen’s claims of ignorance coming under challenge with charges of perjury. The case was never heard due to a controversial hung jury: the foreman of the jury, Luke Shaw, had been an office-bearer of the Young Nationals — an arm of Bjelke Petersen’s National Party — as well as a member of a group calling themselves ‘Friends of Joh’.

Having had his start in life as a peanut farmer in remote Kingaroy, the former Premier was fit up until the very end, but palsy was paralyzing his muscles and organs, to which he eventually succumbed.

“Throughout his life Sir Joh combined enormous energy, vision and an immense capacity for hard work, most especially during his 19-year term as Premier of Queensland,” the Governor General said.

“What looked to us to be huge risks at the time turned out to be nation building,” said Bob Katter, a former minister of Joh’s Government, who credited Sir Joh with starting the Queensland coal, aluminum and tourism industries.

He is also remembered for dismantling many of the State’s unions, and for a somewhat totalitarian and heavy handed style of keeping control.

Under Joh, street protests were banned and Special Branch monitored extensively those the authoritarian leader saw as subversives, measures prompting Queenslander, Australian Civil Liberties Council, Terry O’Gorman, to comment Sir Joh was “the most appalling premier Queensland has ever had in terms of civil liberties and human rights”.

Joh was also influential in the famous case of the Dismissal by the Governor General of then-Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, in 1975.

In his last years as Premier, he had taken his cause to the nation’s capital, with the “Joh for PM” campaign. But this distraction has been credited with the downfall of his government, with corruption investigations at last being conducted by his stand-in, Bill Gunn.

The body of Sir Joh, who was of Lutheran faith, is to be buried at Bethany, the family property near Kingaroy.

Unsolicited quotes from ordinary Australians, many ex-Queenslanders seeking refuge in southern states, on hearing the news:

“Outrageous bastard! Oh God! That was polite!” — “Karen”

“Guilty as Hell. And that’s where he is now.” — “Michael”

“Yay! Good riddence to bad rubbish” — “Liza”

“The dictator is gone our time 2 sing” — “John. H.”

“Yeah he took a while — about 90 f*cking years overdue!” — “Hose Man”

“The pope an joh at least somethin going right” — “Helen”

“Corrupt f*cking sh*teating Bible-bashing f*ckw*t is dead. And thank f*ck. I haven’t been so happy since September 11!” — “Greg”

“I don’t drink but I’ll be having a red whilst dancing on his grave.” — “Cellest”

“Ding dong the d*ck is dead!” — anon.

“Yeahhh!!! Fucking finally” — “Leo”

“It’s a great day today the Rednecks are silent a great victory has been won” — “Zenner”

This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
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Cambridge Planning Board approves new science building at Harvard

July 6th, 2019

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Monday, February 28, 2005

Cambridge, Massachusetts —The planning board of Cambridge, Massachusetts voted in unanimous approval of Harvard University‘s plan to build a 410,000 ft² (38 090 m²) science center at 24 Oxford Street, according to the local newspapers, the Harvard Crimson and the Cambridge Chronicle. More than half of the space in the building will be constructed underground.

The Northwest Science Building, as it will be called, will house the laboratories of roughly 30 Harvard science faculty members, as well as a chilled water plant and an electrical substation. The building was designed by Craig Hartman, an architect in the San Francisco office of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, who also completed Harvard University Master Plan in 2002, according to the firm’s website. Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill also designed such notable buildings as Chicago‘s Sears Tower and the recently completed international terminal at the San Francisco airport.

The vote to approve the plan occurred at the February 15, 2005, meeting of the Cambridge Planning Board at the City Hall Annex, 344 Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge. In what the Harvard Crimson called a “departure from the norm,” there were no comments from residents at the hearing. The Crimson reported that the Harvard officials at the meeting took this as “a signal that the community was well-informed about the project prior to the presentation.” The sign advertising the hearing can be seen at right.

In related news, the Director of Urban Design for Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill’s New York office, Vishaan Chakrabarti, will be speaking at the Harvard Graduate School of Design on March 1, 2005.

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Cleveland, Ohio clinic performs US’s first face transplant

July 5th, 2019

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

A team of eight transplant surgeons in Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, USA, led by reconstructive surgeon Dr. Maria Siemionow, age 58, have successfully performed the first almost total face transplant in the US, and the fourth globally, on a woman so horribly disfigured due to trauma, that cost her an eye. Two weeks ago Dr. Siemionow, in a 23-hour marathon surgery, replaced 80 percent of her face, by transplanting or grafting bone, nerve, blood vessels, muscles and skin harvested from a female donor’s cadaver.

The Clinic surgeons, in Wednesday’s news conference, described the details of the transplant but upon request, the team did not publish her name, age and cause of injury nor the donor’s identity. The patient’s family desired the reason for her transplant to remain confidential. The Los Angeles Times reported that the patient “had no upper jaw, nose, cheeks or lower eyelids and was unable to eat, talk, smile, smell or breathe on her own.” The clinic’s dermatology and plastic surgery chair, Francis Papay, described the nine hours phase of the procedure: “We transferred the skin, all the facial muscles in the upper face and mid-face, the upper lip, all of the nose, most of the sinuses around the nose, the upper jaw including the teeth, the facial nerve.” Thereafter, another team spent three hours sewing the woman’s blood vessels to that of the donor’s face to restore blood circulation, making the graft a success.

The New York Times reported that “three partial face transplants have been performed since 2005, two in France and one in China, all using facial tissue from a dead donor with permission from their families.” “Only the forehead, upper eyelids, lower lip, lower teeth and jaw are hers, the rest of her face comes from a cadaver; she could not eat on her own or breathe without a hole in her windpipe. About 77 square inches of tissue were transplanted from the donor,” it further described the details of the medical marvel. The patient, however, must take lifetime immunosuppressive drugs, also called antirejection drugs, which do not guarantee success. The transplant team said that in case of failure, it would replace the part with a skin graft taken from her own body.

Dr. Bohdan Pomahac, a Brigham and Women’s Hospital surgeon praised the recent medical development. “There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Leading bioethicist Arthur Caplan of the University of Pennsylvania withheld judgment on the Cleveland transplant amid grave concerns on the post-operation results. “The biggest ethical problem is dealing with failure — if your face rejects. It would be a living hell. If your face is falling off and you can’t eat and you can’t breathe and you’re suffering in a terrible manner that can’t be reversed, you need to put on the table assistance in dying. There are patients who can benefit tremendously from this. It’s great that it happened,” he said.

Dr Alex Clarke, of the Royal Free Hospital had praised the Clinic for its contribution to medicine. “It is a real step forward for people who have severe disfigurement and this operation has been done by a team who have really prepared and worked towards this for a number of years. These transplants have proven that the technical difficulties can be overcome and psychologically the patients are doing well. They have all have reacted positively and have begun to do things they were not able to before. All the things people thought were barriers to this kind of operations have been overcome,” she said.

The first partial face transplant surgery on a living human was performed on Isabelle Dinoire on November 27 2005, when she was 38, by Professor Bernard Devauchelle, assisted by Professor Jean-Michel Dubernard in Amiens, France. Her Labrador dog mauled her in May 2005. A triangle of face tissue including the nose and mouth was taken from a brain-dead female donor and grafted onto the patient. Scientists elsewhere have performed scalp and ear transplants. However, the claim is the first for a mouth and nose transplant. Experts say the mouth and nose are the most difficult parts of the face to transplant.

In 2004, the same Cleveland Clinic, became the first institution to approve this surgery and test it on cadavers. In October 2006, surgeon Peter Butler at London‘s Royal Free Hospital in the UK was given permission by the NHS ethics board to carry out a full face transplant. His team will select four adult patients (children cannot be selected due to concerns over consent), with operations being carried out at six month intervals. In March 2008, the treatment of 30-year-old neurofibromatosis victim Pascal Coler of France ended after having received what his doctors call the worlds first successful full face transplant.

Ethical concerns, psychological impact, problems relating to immunosuppression and consequences of technical failure have prevented teams from performing face transplant operations in the past, even though it has been technically possible to carry out such procedures for years.

Mr Iain Hutchison, of Barts and the London Hospital, warned of several problems with face transplants, such as blood vessels in the donated tissue clotting and immunosuppressants failing or increasing the patient’s risk of cancer. He also pointed out ethical issues with the fact that the procedure requires a “beating heart donor”. The transplant is carried out while the donor is brain dead, but still alive by use of a ventilator.

According to Stephen Wigmore, chair of British Transplantation Society’s ethics committee, it is unknown to what extent facial expressions will function in the long term. He said that it is not certain whether a patient could be left worse off in the case of a face transplant failing.

Mr Michael Earley, a member of the Royal College of Surgeon‘s facial transplantation working party, commented that if successful, the transplant would be “a major breakthrough in facial reconstruction” and “a major step forward for the facially disfigured.”

In Wednesday’s conference, Siemionow said “we know that there are so many patients there in their homes where they are hiding from society because they are afraid to walk to the grocery stores, they are afraid to go the the street.” “Our patient was called names and was humiliated. We very much hope that for this very special group of patients there is a hope that someday they will be able to go comfortably from their houses and enjoy the things we take for granted,” she added.

In response to the medical breakthrough, a British medical group led by Royal Free Hospital’s lead surgeon Dr Peter Butler, said they will finish the world’s first full face transplant within a year. “We hope to make an announcement about a full-face operation in the next 12 months. This latest operation shows how facial transplantation can help a particular group of the most severely facially injured people. These are people who would otherwise live a terrible twilight life, shut away from public gaze,” he said.

UN aid convoys face increasing attacks in Darfur

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UN aid convoys face increasing attacks in Darfur

July 5th, 2019

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Friday, July 27, 2007

The United Nations (UN) World Food Programme (WFP) raised concerns about a dramatic escalation in attacks on food aid convoys by armed bandits in the Darfur region of Sudan. WFP says the attacks constrain its ability to feed the more than two million people in the area receiving aid.

Negotiations over a UN Security Council resolution authorising a joint UN-African Union security force for the region continue but full deployment could take up to a year.

“In the last two weeks, nine food convoys have been attacked by gunmen across Darfur,” said Kenro Oshidari, WFP Sudan Representative. “WFP staff and contractors are being stopped at gunpoint, dragged out of their vehicles and robbed with alarming frequency,” he said.

“These abhorrent attacks, which target the very people who are trying to help the most vulnerable in Darfur, must be brought under control,” he added.

A WFP official told Wikinews that the attacks and robberies have occurred in all regions of Darfur, and that the blame can’t be ascribed to a particular group. “Frequently the bandits are wearing uniforms but often in one group of bandits there may be more than one uniform. Thus, we are not pointing fingers at any one group.” said Emilia Casella, WFP Spokesperson for Sudan. “We are calling on all parties to respect the neutrality of humanitarian convoys and their drivers, who are delivering food to civilians who are victims of the conflict.”

“On July 20, a convoy traveling on the Tawilla-Kaura road in North Darfur was stopped by 16 armed men. The drivers were forced out of their vehicles and the robbers demanded 5 Sudanese pounds from each (roughly equivalent to US$2.50). Those who could not pay were beaten. Similar incidents have happened on the same road in the past two weeks.”

According to WFP, in 2007 so far, 18 WFP convoys have been attacked – “shot at, looted, drivers robbed and/or injured”. Four vehicles were stopped and the drivers and passengers robbed. Six vehicles were stolen, where the gunmen drove away with the WFP staff members still inside, though they were later released. “There were no major physical injuries, but naturally such experiences are very traumatic,” said Casella. “These incidents have occurred in all three of the Darfurs, in areas controlled by various groups or the government.”

In the week of July 15-21, there were five incidents in South Darfur, during which a total of seven trucks were looted of approximately 10.5 tonnes of food assistance.

The Darfur operation is the WFP’s largest humanitarian mission, with about 790 staff working to feed more than two million people every month.

The WFP indicated that it has been difficult to hire and retain the commercial trucking companies used to move food and supplies throughout the region due to the risks involved in the service. WFP Public Affairs Officer in Washington D.C. Jennifer Parmelee told Wikinews that “hiring reliable transport in other insecure environments, [such as] Afghanistan and Somalia, is extremely challenging.”

Air service is employed for remote locations and where delivery by road has become too dangerous.

Parmelee told Wikinews that the “increasing insecurity will almost certainly further constrain [WFP’s] ability to operate in Darfur – it already has.” WFP Spokesperson for Sudan, Emilia Casella, indicated that “humanitarian access is likely to be increasingly difficult due to insecurity.” However, the situation has not prevented all aid delivery. “Despite insecurity and access problems, WFP food assistance reached about 2.6 million people in Darfur last month,” said Casella.

A UN resolution on the deployment of a hybrid African Union (AU) and UN force of 26,000 troops is working its way through the UN. Britain and France presented revisions to the draft, which dropped a threat of “further measures” against Sudan for obstructing peace efforts, though Sudan’s ambassador, Abdalmahmood Abdalhaleem, has objected to the revisions.

A deadline of December 31 exists to transfer authority in Sudan’s Darfur region from the AU to the proposed AU-UN force. Full deployment of all 26,000 troops would take up to one year.

The draft resolution would allow the use of force to protect the mission’s personnel and humanitarian workers and would “protect civilians under threat of physical violence”.

Jennifer Parmelee of the WFP suggests that the deployment of the hybrid force under such a mandate would be a positive development in the aid agency’s ability to carry out their humanitarian assistance. “Sure an expanded AU/UN peacekeeping force would help.” said Parmelee. “As it is, AU is stretched very very thin, and…is unable to accompany most of our convoys.”

According to WFP, there are approximately 12,000 humanitarian workers in Darfur, which is a drop in numbers even though the need for aid workers has increased.

Riot at Guantanamo Bay detention camp

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Riot at Guantanamo Bay detention camp

July 5th, 2019

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Saturday, May 20, 2006

Inmates at Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba have attacked guards with fan blades and other makeshift weapons. Rear Admiral Harry Harris, the commander of Joint Task Force Guantanamo says some detainees were injured in “the most violent outbreak” at the facility since it was opened in 2002.

Officers fired rubber bullets at the detainees after the guards were attacked with “broken light fixtures, fan blades” and other improvised weapons. Rear Admiral Harris says, “minimum force was used to quell the disturbance”.

The New York Times reports that a riot-control unit with batons and shields quelled Thursday’s disturbance. Another episode involved two other groups of inmates who tore apart their quarters and attacked guards.

Military officials said the detainees’ actions were designed to draw attention to the plight of the terror suspects detained indefinitely in “Gitmo”. Rear Admiral Harris, said that a prisoner was pretending to hang himself to lure the guards into the room. “The detainees had slickened the floor of their block with faeces, urine and soapy water in an attempt to trick the guards,” he said. “They then assaulted the guards with broken light fixtures, fan blades and bits of metal.”

The guards used pepper spray and blasted the detainees with several shots from a shotgun, firing rubber balls during the five-minute fight. No guards were hurt, but six inmates were treated for “minor injuries,” he said.

Colonel Mike Bumgarner said guards shot five rounds of “nonlethal” pellets from a 12-gauge shotgun, and a rubber grenade from an M-203 launcher. He said rioting then broke out in two other blocks of Camp Four when around 50 detainees damaged their quarters and made weapons to attack the guards. Colonel Bumgarner said it took an hour to bring the disturbances under control. He says the six detainees received minor injuries.

A military spokesman said 60 of the detainees were later transferred to more secure areas of the camp. Colonel Bumgarner says “detainees were jumping out of the beds on top of the guards” and some guards were knocked to the floor. “Frankly we were losing the fight at that point,” he said. “This illustrates to me the dangerous nature of the men we have detained here,” Rear Admiral Harris told reporters in a teleconference.

Earlier in the day, two other detainees attempted suicide by overdosing on hoarded prescription drugs. Guantanamo officials said there have been 41 suicide attempts by 25 detainees and no deaths since the camp opened in January 2002. Defense lawyers contend the figure is higher.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Committee Against Torture has called on the United States to shut down Guantanamo and close any other “secret prisons” it operates. The UN declared the indefinite detention of suspects without charge a “violation of the UN Convention Against Torture.”

“The State party should cease to detain any person at Guantanamo Bay and close this detention facility, permit access by the detainees to judicial process or release them as soon as possible,” the committee said. They called on the US to “ensure that no one is detained in any secret detention facility under its de facto effective control”.

Collectors Wondering Where To Get Tiny Bottles Of Liquor For Their Personal Collection

July 5th, 2019

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Originally produced for the airline and hotel industry miniature bottles of liquor has been gaining popularity as collectible items.

As alcohol retailers slowly start to phase out these small bottles of liquor, in favour of slightly larger medium sized bottles, the rarity factory has begun to increase causing the collectible factor to rise significantly as well.

Travellers are quite familiar with these cool little alcoholic vessels often given out freely on a plane or in a hotel room. They are the perfect size for those who just want a taste or sample of their favourite alcoholic beverage in a convenient container a fraction of the size of the original.

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Many people frequently don’t even attempt to open the bottle as they want to retain the colourful liquid contents within which add to the overall aesthetic appeal of the bottle itself. They will take it home and display it on their shelf or in their custom display case. Some even have a mini-bar in their kitchen specifically designed for these mini bottles. As you can clearly see, these are avid collectors who simply like to admire their favourite brands of drinks instead of just drinking them and then discarding the bottle afterwards.

Even though properly license alcohol establishments began selling them as sample bottles to both regular consumers and collectors alike they have slowly started to shift away from these miniature sizes in favour of slightly large bottles labelled as “medium-sized”. One obvious reason is so that they can obtain a higher profit margin for a larger bottle and reduce their overall manufacturing costs of producing numerous smaller bottles. As a result, for those brands that still produce them they have become much more limited in production runs and therefore many of them have become rarer.

In fact, some have chosen either to stop manufacturing those sizes altogether while others only include them on the full size bottles as a free attachment. This means that for collectors it is harder and harder to simply find them on store shelves as standalones without having to spend the extra cash to pay for the full size bottle as well.

Tiny bottles of liquor have become so popular over the years that there have been sites and forums dedicated solely to exchanging information on them. Many of the people who visit these sites often ask the question of where to get miniature bottles of liquor of various brands from different countries. Fortunately, there are many previous generations of collectors who are willing to part with their rare or vintage small bottles of liquor and sell them on various independent retail sites. This allows the collector to find almost any brand that they want from any country in the world.

Article Source: sooperarticles.com/food-drinks-articles/wine-spirit-articles/collectors-wondering-where-get-tiny-bottles-liquor-their-personal-collection-381702.html

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Visit Tiny Bottles of Liquor for more information.Author: Tony Tracy

Wikinews Shorts: December 9, 2008

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Wikinews Shorts: December 9, 2008

July 5th, 2019

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A compilation of brief news reports for Tuesday, December 9, 2008.

Contents

  • 1 US media group Tribune files for bankruptcy protection
  • 2 Quebec votes in general election
  • 3 Bailout for US automakers nears agreement
 Contribute to Wikinews by expanding these briefs or add a new one.

The United States media group Tribune Company has filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday as it struggled to sort out its US$13 billion debt. It is the second-largest newspaper publisher in the United States, responsible for the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, among others.

The firm has been hit hard by the industry-wide slump in newspaper advert revenues this year. Sam Zell, the billionaire who owns Tribune, took out large loans in order to buy the firm back in June of 2007.

The United States Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection law states that a company can continue trading whilst it sorts out its finances.

Sources


 This story has updates See Quebec’s Liberal premier Jean Charest wins third term 

The Quebec general election is underway in the Canadian province of Quebec. Premier Jean Charest called the elections, saying he needed a majority to guide Quebec through a period of economic difficulties caused by the worldwide financial crisis.

Polls indicate that the Charest may obtain a majority, with support for his Quebec Liberal Party increasing to 45%, while support for the Parti Québécois remains at around 30%.

The polls will close at 01:00 GMT (20:00 local time), and the results will probably come in soon after that.

Sources


The United States government is reportedly close to an agreement for a US$15 billion bailout plan for the country’s three largest auto firms.

According to a draft obtained by the Associated Press, the deal would give loans to Detroit‘s struggling Big Three automobile manufacturersFord, General Motors, and Chrysler — but under the condition that the auto industry restructures itself to survive. Another condition is that the incumbent US President, George W. Bush, would appoint an overseer to supervise the effort.

Analysts suggest that the agreement could be signed into law by the end of this week.

Sources


New edition of Canada’s Food Guide released

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New edition of Canada’s Food Guide released

July 1st, 2019

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Thursday, February 8, 2007

A new version of Canada’s Food Guide was announced by Canadian Health Minister Tony Clement on Feb. 5, 2007. The guide has helped Canadians with healthy eating habits since 1942 but was last updated in 1992. It is the Canadian government’s most-requested publication after income tax forms.

Changes to the Food Guide include:

  • a first-time recommendation to include a small amount of unsaturated fat in regular diets;
  • physical activity to complement healthy eating;
  • advice for some people to take vitamin supplements;
  • an advisory to limit foods with excess salt, sugar, fat and calories, which is considered an unprecedented caution regarding junk food.
Examples of the Food Guide’s four groups (clockwise from top left): vegetables and fruit, grain products, meat and its alternatives, milk and its alternatives

A Carrier Heat Pump Offers Several Benefits For Your Home

June 21st, 2019

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byAlma Abell

An increasing number of people are switching to electric vehicles because they aren’t as fossil fuel-dependent as traditional cars are. The same trend is happening in the HVAC industry, with more homeowners and business owners opting for heat pumps. A Carrier Heat Pump is particularly known for its high quality and ability to save you on your utility bill each month.

Benefits

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The Carrier Heat Pump provides cost savings because the more you use the pump, which runs on electricity, the less you have to use your home’s gas furnace. You can choose from a wide variety of pumps. For instance, a packaged heat pump essentially packs all of the advantages of an efficient cooling unit, heating unit and strong fan coil into one unit. A ductless one is ideal for those whose homes don’t have existing ductwork or those who need to cool and seasonally heat a room added to the home.

Other Options

You percent government tax credit; the tax credit helps you to recoup a portion of your pump installment costs.

How It Works

Heat pumps produce cool air in the summer or even year-round in warmer climates, and they effectively reverse their operation during cooler seasons to provide warm air for your house. A Carrier Heat Pump not only heats and cools your home but also dehumidifies—yet another perk of this highly rated product. The right company will show you how your system works and answer any questions you may have. With a quality heating and cooling system, you can be confident that your entire family will remain comfortable in every season in the years ahead.

Contact R.A. Heating & Air Conditioning for outstanding products and services in Wisconsin. To learn more about how the company can make your home more comfortable, visit raheating.com.

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