Sunday, August 28, 2011

4th period: First Current Event Assignment, due 9/2

The topic for this week's assignment is your choice. Please refrain from using sports or entertainment articles. Make sure to use a current and reputable source and find something that interests you. Your post should adhere to the following format:

-Your name/class period
-Title of article/author
-Source/date of article
-URL (your classmates will be able to copy and paste this in order to see your article)

Paragraph #1:
-Summary of article (minimum of 5 sentences that detail who/what, when, where, why significant) 

Paragraph #2:
-Reflection/Opinion (minimum of 3 sentences)
-supporting facts/personal experiences
-relate the current event to what we've been studying in class (if applicable--this will only apply on the weeks where specific topics are assigned)
-pose questions/concerns about the event

Hint: I strongly encourage you to type your current event response into a google/word doc first. You can then copy/paste your assignment into blogger. This will enable you to check your spelling/grammar and also prevent losing your work in the event of a computer error. Blogger is NOT perfect and has been known to crash mid sentence. Remember that you can always e-mail me your assignment if you are having trouble with blogger.

Have fun finding an interesting current event and I cannot wait to read about your discoveries! :)


  1. Nate M./ Pd. 4
    Title: The Old Guard carries on in all kinds of weather, including hurricanes
    Author: Ed Payne
    Date: August 30, 2011 12:25 p.m. EDT

    The US Army's 3rd US Infantry Regiment (Old Guard) at the Tomb of the Unknown at Arlington National Cemetery has posted watch every second for 63 years. They were not going to have a hurricane get in the way of their tradition. Members of the Old Guard earned new admiration this week for showing their dedication during Hurricane Irene.

    This to me sounds like the motto "This we will defend" or "Army Strong". The Old Guard showed pure determination in keeping vigil of the tomb while a hurricane passes through the capital with driving sheets of rain. If that was me right now I wouldn't last a moment outside.

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  3. Anna Baynes Period 4
    Scientist Man Bioterror Front Lines Post-9/11
    Marcus Wohlsen
    Herald Tribune, Friday, August 26, 2011

    After 9/11, Tom Slezak was ordered to call his team and get on a plane to move from Livermore, California to go to Andrews Air Force Base in Washington, DC. There they have been working on ways to help prevent poisonous gases from contaminating the airs of the United States. There is now a device that will alert the government if there are any unknown pathogens in the air. This way they can evacuate the area and prevent further injuries. This device is set up in 30 cities and covers 80% of the US population. These devices suck in the air through filter and test for pathogens. This device may be tested now that the 10th anniversary of 9/11 is coming up.

    I didn’t realize that someone could potentially put poisonous gas into the air. It is cool that they could invent a device that detects poisonous gases and could protect the people of the United States. I am glad these scientists have found a solution to keep the United States safe. I hope our town is protected. Even though I grew up after 9/11 I still do not think about terrorism much and the fact that we could be attacked. I would like to know what kinds of gasses it could detect and what the devices look like. However, this information is not let out to the public so terrorists cannot avoid or destroy the devices.

  4. Jill McLeod; Period 4
    Facebook Pays $40,000 to Bug Spotters
    Laurie Segall
    CNN; Tuesday, August 30, 2011

    Three weeks ago, Facebook launched a new program that allowed professional and amateur computer hackers to track down any “bugs” or viruses that would be dangerous to the site. If a hacker reports something and it checks out they could get paid a minimum of $500, and they have already paid hackers $40,000 this week alone. One very effective report received $5,000 and one reporter was given $7,000 for six different potential threats. Already hackers from 16 countries have contributed their computer knowledge to this program, and Facebook promises that they will not take any legal action towards those who report any bugs. Facebook claims that this new program will also help them tap into the combined knowledge of the sites 750 million users.

    It’s good to know Facebook recognizes that there are smart people out there who don’t work for them. This program seems to be very successful even after only three weeks in effect. It makes me wonder if Facebook will consider using the knowledge of some people to improve the site in different ways. Getting your account hacked is a total bummer so it’s assuring to know that there are lots of people making sure that stuff doesn’t happen.

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  6. Garrett Young-Wright: Period 4
    Coral Could Hold Key to Sunscreen Pill
    By Michelle Roberts
    BBC News: August 30, 2011

    At the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, scientists from the King's College London in the United Kingdom studied a special type of coral called Acropora coral, to see if a synthetic duplicate(because the coral is endangered) of it could be placed in a tablet and sold as a sunscreen pill. Dr. Paul Long led the expedition to the coral reef, saying that the contents will first be put into a lotion and tested and that a pill will hopefully come after that. The experiment is being done because Dr. Long knew that the coral was making a compound that was protecting itself from the sun's rays in the tropical weather, but didn't know how to harvest it, until now. Dr. Long also says that "fish that feed on the coral also benefit from this sunscreen protection." In addition, Dr. Long feels that something like this could be used for agriculture to make more UV resistant plants.

    I think that a sunscreen tablet would be a great idea. Since I don't tan and really only burn, I always need to have suncscreen on when the sun is out strong, but I don't like the greasy feeling on my hands or the sharp pain whenever it gets in my eye. A tablet form of sunscreen would be perfect for someone like me and for many others. Hopefully the research that Dr. Long and his team are doing ends up creating a pill of sorts, and that it will be sold commercially.

  7. Alex Adams/ Period 4
    Title: “Gadhafi son Saif al-Islam vows ‘victory soon’”/Written by: Nic Robertson
    Source: Article Date: 8/31/11
    Today in Libya, Moammar Gadhafi’s son, Saif al-Islam called into a Libyan news station to discuss the recent developments of the civil war. He told the news reporter that he would not negotiate with the rebels; he would only negotiate with a “real” government. He went on to say that the rebels were actually foreign troops, and that any Libyan rebels had been threatened by NATO to fight. These announcements come as rebel forces march from Tripoli toward Gadhafi’s hometown, Sirte. Gadhafi assures that there will be no surrender, only martyr or victory. These events are important because it is the lead up to the end of the Gadhafi regime, and the liberation of the Libyan people.

    After reading this article, I believe that Gadhafi and the loyalists are about to collapse. He’s spreading propaganda in a last ditch attempt to win back the support of the country. The most obvious example of his true intentions is when Gadhafi told the press that NATO was forcing Libyans to fight or else they would rape their women.

  8. Iran Says Cheap “Made in China” Qurans Full of Typos

    Iran is trying to save money by buying Qurans from China and it is not working how they had hoped. Supposedly the brand new copies are littered with typos. The books are made cheap and sold expensive said an official. He also suggested for the company to stop further shipments to Iran. China has now been accused of seafood with putrefying bacteria, toys with lead fake eggs and messed up Qurans.

    I think that with china messing up lately on so many things that people are going to stop manufacturing there sooner or later. I also think that it is hilarious that China messed up on a holy book. Finally I think this is an interesting article and is defiantly worth reading.

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  10. Caroline Stanton 4th period
    Kosovan admits killing 2 US airmen in Germany 8/31/11

    A Kosovan man: Arid Uka just now admitted on Wednesday to killing two innocent U.S. airmen at the Frankfurt Airport in Germany back in March. He is being charged with three counts of attempted murder along with two counts of murder, for the killings of Nicholas J. Alden and Zachary R. Cuddeback. Uka told the judge that he was influenced by Islamic radical websites saying that they “Motivated him.” Germany has experienced terrorist attacks (Not usually from Islamic extremists.) but never at the Frankfurt airport. This includes the 2007 planned attack at the air force base in Ramstein, Germany. He waited at the airport to confirm there was a bus coming that was headed to Afghanistan; he then made his strike to the people on the bus.

    This story is especially important now with the tenth anniversary of 9/11 coming up. This ties into what we are talking about in class because being a good citizen is reporting crimes, someone could have reported Arid Uka’s suspicious behavior. This story was interesting to me because I have been to the Frankfurt Airport actually not long after this had happened.

  11. Annie Wilcosky- Period 4
    Miners rescued from flooded illegal Chinese pit-no stated author
    BBC News, August 30, 2011

    In north- eastern China, nineteen coal miners have recently been rescued after a week of being trapped underground in an illegal mine. The miners first became trapped when they reportedly drilled into an already flooded shaft by mistake. As China relies on coal for approximately 70% of its energy needs, the industry is extremely important. However, China's mining industry is the most dangerous in the world, with over 2,600 miners killed in 2009 alone. Many workers in illegal mines have little training, and are migrant workers. The recent rescue of nineteen miners in Heilongjian province was largely successful, but three are still missing and one died in the accident. The rescue occurred after a 920 ft. pipe was drilled into the mine to provide fresh air; noises were heard through the pipe which restored hope that the miners were still alive.

    This article states that there have been several instances of illegal mining related accidents in the past few years alone. Although the government shut down over 1,000 illegal pits last year in order to improve safety standards, the existence of unauthorized mines is a continuing problem in China. Jobs in mines attract immigrants in the country who are in need of money to provide for their families and themselves; however, what they get is limited training in one of the world's most dangerous professions. I believe that the Chinese government should attempt to regulate the mining industry more thoroughly. Mining can be deadly, especially if the mine in question is being run illegally; safety protocol and procedure is almost certainly not being followed as strictly as would be expected in a normal mine. Unsafe mining is a problem affecting many people, and the government should take more initiative to curtail the practice.

  12. Maddie Mesaros
    Period: 4
    Title: Iraqis mourn victims of Baghdad mosque attack
    Author: USA Today
    Source: USA Today
    Date: August 28, 2011

    This article is just another thing that’s wrong overseas. There was another bombing and it was during the holy Muslim month of Ramadan. 200 people were gathered in the sacred mosque praying when the bomb went off. Security in the mosque is extremely high, especially during Ramadan, so they believe how the suicide bomber got in was getting help from a highly trusted worker at the mosque. Confused immediately spread around the mosque. People mourned as the death count increased. 29 people were dead and 38 people injured.
    Reading this I was both surprised and saddened. What surprised me is that they think that now the bombings are between the Sunni and Shiite Muslims. Obviously what was depressing was the fact that 29 people, possibly more, lost their lives. Mosque guards didn’t suspect the bomber because his hand was broken and bandaged. The head of Sunni Endowment said that this was the first time this kind of a security breach occurred and everyone is extremely shocked. What I don’t understand is why does there always have to be bombs going off? In the article it says it started between the Sunnis and the Shiites when the Sunnis bombed a Shiite mosque in 2006, but my question is why?

  13. Casey Molina/period 4
    Infant skull surgery success for Raleigh boy/Allen Mask, M.D.
    WRAL news/ 08/31/11

    Today a two-year-old boy named Colt Jackson is finally free of his deformities. Colt is one of the babies born each year with Craniosynostosis, a skull deformity in which the tissue connecting the two skull bones fuses too early during childhood development. This fusing can put pressure on the brain and cause the head and skull to have an abnormal shape and ridges. Colt received a pioneering treatment at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. This endoscopic procedure allowed him to heal more quickly, but required him to wear a helmet in order to shape his skull. Colt wore a helmet for fifteen months and was allowed to take it off in January. The experimental procedure used to treat Colt’s Craniosytosis is now available at Duke University Hospital. His Family urges other parents of babies with Craniosynostosis to request this treatment plan. Thanks to this new technology Colt Jackson has recovered from surgery with a perfectly normal skull.
    I think it is amazing that new technologies are being developed to help correct deformities early in development. Deformities can be social hindrances especially for children and it is wonderful that the Jacksons were able to give Colt this treatment. However would it be more beneficial if our scientific research was focused more on problems which affect a larger number of people? Studies surrounding things like cancer and HIV AIDs are indeed much more common and it is important that other diseases/ diagnoses be represented, but why do we not have a cure for HIV? Scientists are developing many new cures for diseases but it seems like the larger problems are too tough to crack. I believe that scientific research for larger problems is taking place, yet I am not sure that it is enough. With an increased pool of scientists and doctors working for a single common cause and an increased amount of collaboration between Universities, developing cures for old diseases may be possible. Would something like finding a cure for cancer or a more effective solution to America’s growing obesity problem be more beneficial in the long run?

  14. Desaree' Johnson / 4th
    20-yr-old College Student Swept Away By Hurricane Irene / Nancy Grace / August 29th

    The death toll has gotten larger and larger each day from people killed by Hurricane Irene . There was a 20 year old girl named Celena J Sylvestri who got added to the death toll . This young girl was on her way to her boyfriend's house when the flooding came it . The wind was so strong that it knocked her off the road and into the Salem River in New Jersey . She had frantically called 911 saying she was up to her neck in water but by the time the police came , it was too late and they couldn't find her . She was only 1 month way from getting her associates degree in music education major .

    I feel very upset about this . I know that this incident is probably hard for her family to deal with and especially her boyfriend since she was headed to him when she died . Her family are doing good efforts to keep her in rememeberance and they even put a memorial fund together for her called the Celena J Sylvestri Fund and the proceeds are going to benefit the music education .

  15. Charles Wang/4th Period
    Oklahoma City fires force more evacuations, highway closure/CNN Wire Staff
    CNN/August 31

    Two large brush fires were started on Tuesday in Oklahoma. Since its start, it has burned through nearly fifteen square miles. These fires caused many families to evacuate and even a closing of a major highway. These fires closed over a forty mile section of Interstate 44 between Oklahoma City and Tulsa. These fires were caused by the severe drought that is currently in Oklahoma.

    I feel that the people are going to have a really hard time living in the places affected by drought. The droughts may have been caused by global warming and many people have to pay the price for it. The people will not be able to live easy because a highway is closed and many families are forced to leave because of the potential danger. I am concerned about how much the fire will spread because there is currently a drought in Oklahoma. The fire will take a lot of water to put out which can increase the price of water in the state by a lot.

  16. Sean Dawson
    4th period
    Gaddafi said to be in desert town: Libyan military by Samia Nakhoul

    In Tripoli, Muammar Gaddafi has been missing. The Tripoli military operations leaders have stated that he is hiding in a desert town called Bani Walid. Along with him are his son Saif al-Islam and intelligence chief Abdullah al-Senussi. They left three days after Tripoli fell a week ago. They are talking to people of Bani Walid, trying to find out if that is where he is hiding, but they have not responded. They do not want to attack Bani Walid though, because many of their brigades in Benghazi and Zintan are from Bani Walid. The war in Libya will go on until Gaddafi is captured or killed.
    This situation is a lot like Bin Laden’s. Both were hiding because they knew they were wanted. Some people are pro-Gaddafi, but I am completely against him. Although I do wonder, if he is killed, will Libya really turn around?

  17. Jayson Williams
    4th Period
    Rebels Extend Deadline as Qaddafi Says He’ll Resist By: By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK and RICK GLADSTONE
    Sep. 1st 2011 New York Times

    Tripoli, Libya Muammar Gaddafi and his followers are being ordered to surrender. However he and his leaders have decided to not give up. An Arabic news station reported Gaddafi's message to his followers, "Let there be a long fight and let Libya be engulfed in flames." Another one of his quotes was, "We will not give up. We are not women. We will continue fighting." Since the invasion of Tripoli last month, Gaddafi has been a fugitive.
    During this time the Libyans have been going through many troubling times. Their ruler has torn their country apart. It has to be extremely hard for the Libyan people to go through a war stricken country. It also has to be really hard to choose a side when you're in the same country.

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  19. Colin Bergey / Period 7
    Progress made against Texas wildfire, but new blazes erupt / Jim Spellman
    CNN / September 1, 2011

    Firefighters in northern Texas have been making good progress fighting a recent Texas wildfire. Unfortunately, new fires have begun because of the continuous dry conditions. The fire in Palo Pinto County has burned over 6200 acres of land, only 100 miles away from Dallas. So far the fires have destroyed forty homes and nine RVs. The 17 new fires that have recently started have burned a collective total of over 4,146 acres. This is the worst fire season in the history of Texas because of the ongoing record drought. It is also due to the jet stream blocking cool air from the north and sucking in hot, tropical air from the south and dumping it over Texas. If the jet stream weakens next week, a tropical storm may be able to move in and help put out all these fires. This is important because fires in Texas have burned over 3.5 million acres since last November.

    This is terrible that Texas has so many destructive fires throughout the year. 3.5 million acres is an incredible amount of land. The fire season there is very long and everyone runs the risk of a fire near where they live. This is somewhat concerning to me because I have cousins that live in Texas.

  20. Nakeisha Revels/4th
    Exit the King/Alan Deutschman
    In Newsweek Magazine/August 29, 2011

    Steven Jobs announce to the world last week that he would step down as chief executive officer of Apple. Steven has been with Apple since 1997 and has increase Apple’s shares to a stunning 110-fold. After falling from $53-$14 in shares and losing $247 million, he came up with a better idea, the iPod, which was the “an age of digital lifestyle” he said in a speech. The iPod sold great but the biggest breakthrough was the iTunes Store that arrived in April 2003. iTunes Store had the most astonishing streak in the history of modern business.

    I am very happy about this. He has enough money to step down and let somebody else take his place and he’s 56 years old, so he had the right to retire. I know it’s hard on Apple because my mom is about to retire and people are already saying that they are going to miss her. The company will continue to go with the advice and ideas he gave them and create even more incredible technology we use today.

  21. Gabrielle Pura period 4
    Malaria Mosquito Population Dropping In Many Parts of Africa, Nobody Is Sure Why
    Christian Nordqvist
    Medical News Today; August 31, 2011

    Over the past few years, including today, some parts of sub- Saharan Africa are noticing that the amount of mosquitoes have decreased leaving everyone left curious as to why. Along with the mosquito rates dropping, the spread of malaria has also subsided. So far in the investigations of the decrease, scientists believe the drop is either due to climate changes, the mosquitoes being ill, or because they might come back bringing a stronger wave of malaria. They also believe that the mosquito nets that have been provided to some of the Africans are taking affect on the mosquitoes. Fortunately, this situation has led the Africans in the sub- Saharan part of Africa safe. It is to their benefit that most do not have to encounter malaria, which is one of the major causes of death among children.

    I find this news article interesting because of the many African’s that are surviving through the break in malaria. On the other hand, since scientists do not know when the mosquitoes will be coming back, it will be an unfortunate event for the Africans once again to be contacted with malaria. Another interesting fact that was stated in the article is how the immunity towards the mosquito parasite may have decreased in some people or has still never developed. Therefore, if they were to be contacted with malaria, their body would have a difficult time trying to fight it and the pain would be more severe. My major concern and question about the sudden disappearance is when the mosquitoes come back, will they spread a version of malaria stronger than the current one to the Africans?

  22. Connor Smith 4th period
    Apple Suppliers Causing Environmental Problems, Chinese Group Says
    By David Barboza
    New York Times, September 1st, 2011

    There has been a newfound wave of controversy over the legitimacy of Apple’s claim to being a green company. Recent investigations have led a Chinese environmental group to believe that some of Apple’s Chinese suppliers have been improperly disposing of waste, and even endangering the workers of their factories. This is a bold claim, since Apple has been portrayed as an environmentally friendly company for many years. The Chinese environmental group also claims that there have been an increasing amount of work related accidents in their factories. Apple spokesmen have denied the allegations that they have not been enforcing the highest waste disposal standards, and rejected the idea that they are not handling themselves responsibly.

    I found this article interesting because Apple has consistently claimed that they are an environmentally friendly company. They have also been notoriously depicted as a company that revolutionized the amount of power and resources that traditional computer technology required. If the claims made by this environmentalist group is true, I think all the company’s work towards energy and resource conservation could be considered redundant.

  23. Shelby Casabura 4th period
    Analysis: Battle for Libya not quite over
    By Nic Robertson and Tim Lister, CNN
    September 1, 2011

    Ten days ago the rebels stormed Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi's forces didn’t resist the rebels and it seemed then the war going on for 6 months was over. With constant gun battle the rebels had seemed to have beaten Gadhafi. Even after ten days the future for the country seems unclear with the relief of being liberated from the ruler Gadhafi. With one of there problems fixed they have the issue of water shortage. The water mains are supposed to still be under control of the pro-Gadhafi forces these troops have purposely restrained the flow into the city which gets water to 605 of the cities residents. United states forces said they are tying to repair the mains and bring back the water to the city the date is unknown when this could be finished. Lucky supplies from charities are being brought into the country of course bringing water, medical supplies, and food.

    After reading this article you can see how hard everyone had fought to get rid of Gadhafi. Even with Gadhafi his affects on the country still remain. Even his supporters haven’t given up yet. The country seems to be making all the right steps to undo what Gadhafi has done to his people. Even with the incoming efforts going on it will be a long time to fix the country. I have hope for the country to start fresh and forget about Gadhafi.

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  25. Justine Lockhart 4th period
    Vermont's misery continues as flooding isolates communities
    By: Ed Payne

    The recent hurricane, "Hurricane Irene" drastically effected the east coast, especially up north such as in Vermont. So much was destroyed in this small, northern state--bridges, homes, property, businesses, and memorable landmarks. The flooding caused from the intense hurricane damaged 263 roads and bridges and three people in Vermont were reported dead. Vermont has never seen worse flooding in their state until "Irene". With so many roads and bridges damaged and flooded, people in Vermont have been isolated. However, help is already on it's way, Obama recently signed a disaster declaration. This declaration allows federal aid to help people in Vermont rebuild their state--and their heartbroken lives.

    The hurricane really didn't effect the piedmont region of North Carolina that much, it just gave us some rain and a lot of wind, so it was shocking to see how much damage it has done to Vermont. In fact other states are recovering from Hurricane Irene. My aunt and uncle live in Massachusetts and there was a lot of flooding and damage done to their small farm town as well. I'm glad that their is federal aid helping Vermont though, it must be devastating to have your state destroyed.

  26. Casey Mickunas
    4th Period
    By:Neil MacFarquhar and Neil MacFarquhar

    An Israeli naval blockade of Gaza was a legal blockade, but also the way they stopped and boarded blockade runners was unnecessary. The UN was called into action because the Israeli blockade was stopping Gaza-bound ships from travelling into Gaza waters. One of six ships seized by Israeli was commandeered by Israeli commandos while it was sailing under the Turkish flag. The Israeli militants treated the crew of the ships unfairly and killed eight Turks and one American of Turkish descent. This was significant because it created a barrier between Turkey and Israel.

    I wonder if this blockade was necessarily at all. I also think it was not right for the Israeli commandos to seize a ship sailing under the Turkish flag, and then treat the crew so ruthlessly. I do not think that Israel apology to Turkey was good and that Israel should have done what Turkey asked for them to do.

  27. Jutsus Heizer
    7th period
    Title:No U.S. troops killed in Iraq for first month since invasion
    By Richard Allen Greene,
    Source: CNN Justus Heizer
    August 30th

    Since 2003 we have lost 4,464 soldiers in Iraq since the invasion started. In August of 2011 none of our soldiers were killed. Even after we declared the combat operations to be ended, 56 soldiers were killed while out there. If you look at Afghanistan and the total deaths in August then you will see that there were 66 deaths in August and that there is a very large difference from absolutely nothing. Now soldiers are training in Iraq to be able to fight better, to be stronger, and to be better skilled. One instance in Afghanistan August 6th 30 soldiers died due to one helicopter crash. January 1st, 2012 is there deadline to withdraw from Iraq.
    When I read this i was very happy to hear that we went a whole month without anymore deaths of American soldiers in Iraq. Im also very happy to know that we will be pulling most of our troops out of Iraq the 1st of January. The united states wants to keep some soldiers to stay so that they could be trained to fight there. In my opinion that is a good idea because you get to train in terrible conditions so it will make you more prepared and also if something were to happen such as more fights or killings then the troops would be there for support. I was also very saddened by hearing that Afghanistan is having more more and more deaths. I think that they are trying to do what they did last year by taking soldiers out who have been through the rough and tough and bring in a ton more soldiers to become better and more skilled.

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  29. Diego Lewis, 4th Period
    Mars Rover Discovery Elates NASA by Kenneth Chang
    New York Times, Sept. 1

    Recently, the space robot Opportunity has found a certain rock that has excited many scientists at NASA. The robot entered the Endeavour Crater, and found a rock containing high levels of zinc and bromine. This suggests that the rock was formed with thermal energy and water. This was reported last Thursday by NASA scientists. This is important because this is another clue suggesting that Mars has or has had water, which is the key to extraterrestrial life.

    I personally find this to be very interesting. It said in the article that the rover has so far driven 30 miles, while it was only designed to drive for less than one mile. That is really impressive, and it is good to see that NASA will still be doing research in outer space. I want to know if they are planning on launching more rovers like this to do research on Mars, and where the rock they found came from. It may have come from an asteroid, which is even more exciting, because that means there might be life somewhere else in space.

  30. Samantha Joy Straughan
    “Choosing death can be like birth”-Elizabeth Landau
    August 30th, 2011 CNN

    “Choosing death can be like birth”-Elizabeth Landau is an extremely controversial article. Should a terminally ill patient have the chose to speed up death? The article follows the family of James Powell, a man who decided to end his life with lethal medication rather then a natural death. Powell had worked with Oregan’s Death with Dignity Act so that fatal patients may be “put out of their misery” quicker. This specific topic is just as about as controversial as things such as abortion, cloning, etc. With the votes being about half-and-half as to weather or not this act is morally right. For many people pro the act, it isn’t like a suicide option for them as much as being able to die comfortably, quick and painless. Although on the other side of the argument, there are people who believe that this is assisted suicide and that it makes killing and acceptable part of medical practice. There are many requirements that go into this act though, such as you must be at least 18 years of age and given the maximum of 6 months to live.
    When it comes to my personal opinion of this article it’s really hard for me not to be slightly biases towards the pro-choice side. My grandfather currently has stage 4 esophagus cancer and is given a few more weeks at best. When I visit him I see him struggle to eat, sleep, even talk. You can see that his in an immense amount of physical pain, and when you really love someone you hate seeing them like that and wish you could do anything to help them hurry on their way. Unfortunately that also proposes the question, are you truly comfortable knowing your loved one has the option to put drugs in their body to reduce their time on this earth? Due to the uncertainty I have about this method, I don’t think I would be able to include myself in a vote that addressed this matter in particular until I wasn’t directly in the moment with a relative.

  31. Eli Grobin, 4th Period
    "No one fears Obama" by Roland Martin
    September 2, 2011

    This article basically says that obama isn't being a real tough president. That he kind of lets his opposition walk all over him. It points out how Obama crumbled during the debt debate and that he seemed to be trying to please the Republicans more than he wants to help the American people. The article pointed out that when Obama tryed to get the banks to help fix the economic crisis they just told him to give them money and he did. To no help of the economy. It also seems like this is the reason that Speaker John Boehner just told the President "no" to meeting.
    I think that this article has a lot of truth to it. Obama is not as powerful as some other Presidents have been. The congress is doing what it wants regardless of what Obama has to say on the issue. In the past Presidents have been the people congresses go to for advice. Obama has not exerted the presidential muscle he needs to and the lack of it has gotten in the way of him completing his agenda. I really think this article has a lot of truth to it and I hope Obama becomes a little more feared so that people will listen to him.

  32. Sam Williams period 4
    Democrats urge Obama to 'Go Big' with Jobs Package
    Mara Liasson
    NPR September 2, 2011
    Obama has called for a joint meeting of Congress. He is expected to propose a jobs bill to the House and Senate. Recently, Obama has been trying to gather bipartisan support for his bills. Many Democrats are urging him to stop compromising and propose a bill that Democrats favor. Democrats tell Obama that he should be tough on a bill to regain his reputation as a strong leader and gather public support.

    I picked this article because it is important to know what is going on in the government. A jobs bill is needed. If it is used as a tool to gain support for Obama among Democrats by fixing his reputation, than it is not being used to fix the economy. IF Democrats think they can push through a bill by themselves without Republican support then they should but refusing to work with Republicans to fix the economy to make themselves appear strong before the election is not going to fix anything.

  33. Laura Buczek/4th Period
    Irene floods: Supplies airlifted to Vermont towns/BBC
    BBC News/August 30th, 2011

    Hurricane Irene tore through the East Coast last week beginning on August 20th, killing 42 people in 12 different states. In Vermont, the hurricane blocked over 200 roads and forced rescue efforts into 13 different towns. This caused the largest flood since 1927, however the flood wasn’t the only damage caused by Irene, power outages and fallen trees were scattered among the towns in Vermont. Vermont’s National Guard troops worked very efficiently to bring in food, water, and various emergency supplies to people in need. Supplies were either brought in by trucks or airlifted; this helped the people of Vermont get through one of the toughest natural disasters in history for the state. Hurricane Irene affected not only Vermont, but other states such as North Carolina, New Jersey, Connecticut, and New York and the damage will cost billions of dollars.

    Although this hurricane was fairly small compared to others that have occurred, it will still cost many states a lot of money to pay for the damage. Especially in Vermont, the damage was so severe that emergency supplies had to be airlifted to survivors; this was a very important and helpful procedure in helping people get through all the damage. The fact that National Guard Troops came in helped a lot and got the state of Vermont one step closer to recovering from damage. The effects of this hurricane are definitely something that should receive help and thankfully that was able to happen.