21 August

Italy and France draw 1-1; Italy wins FIFA World Cup on penalties

Sunday, July 9, 2006

Italy converted five immaculate penalties to win the 2006 FIFA World Cup after a drawn game and thirty minutes of extra-time in the spectacular arena of the Olympiastadion Berlin, Sunday.

French captain Zinedine Zidane did not help his team when, 20 minutes into extra time, he lost control of his emotions and got a red card after ramming his head into the chest of Italian player Marco Materazzi.

The game was closely contested with the play makers on both sides – Andrea Pirlo and Zidane, on his last game before retirement – not getting much space with which to dominate the play. For Italy and France Gennaro Gattuso and Claude Makelele tackled hard.

However; both creative midfield stars made important contributions to the only goals of the game. Zidane converted a chipped penalty after five minutes while Pirlo’s magnificent corner, a quarter of an hour later, thundered into the net off Marco Materazzi’s head.

Materazzi had previously conceded the penalty when he tapped Florent Malouda on his ankle as he ran past him in the penalty area.

In the first half Italy’s left and right defensive backs Gianluca Zambrotta and Fabio Grosso penetrated down the French flanks. But after the break France came out the strongest. The flow of the game was disrupted when Patrick Viera pulled-up injured and Marcello Lippi made two substitutions on the hour. A deadlock resulted as teams tired and individuals battled for every ball without thinking too hard about constructing team attacks.

Materazzi was never far from the action in the final and though Italy had 55 percent of ball possession was one of the busier players on the pitch. France were slightly more potent offensively with 13 shots – out-shooting the Azzurri by eight attempts.

In Extra Time France came closest to a goal – Zidane, unmarked, headed to goal from 12 yards but was tipped over one-handed by Gianluigi Buffon.

Zidane’s next contribution to the game was not so graceful and appeared to be sparked by the close marking of the ubiquitous Materazzi. After a verbal altercation the 34-year-old turned around and drove his head violently into the Italian’s upper chest.

Materazzi was knocked backwards on the floor but the incident occurred off the ball and was not immediately noticed by the referee or his assistants. Buffon soon ran out of his penalty area to an assistant referee and the game was stopped.

Horacio Elizondo ran to the touchline to consult with officials and returned waving a red card for the violent conduct of Zidane. It is likely FIFA used information from fourth and fifth official to confirm the decision. However FIFA denied video evidence claims alleged by France team’s coach Raymond Domenech[1].

The headbutt and red card was Zidane’s last action in football as he had said he would retire after the tournament.

A penalty shootout was necessary to decide the winner. Eight shots went in; David Trezeguet missed the one that mattered. His shot hit the crossbar and unlike Zidane’s penalty in the first half, bounced down inches the wrong side of the goal line.

While Zidane was hanging his boots up Marco Materazzi scored Italy’s third. Grosso, who in the second round had won a last minute penalty against Australia, powered in the fifth to give Italy the cup.

The only goal Marcello Lippi’s Italy conceded during free play in the tournament proved to be an own goal from Cristian Zaccardo against the United States of America.

Italy captain Fabio Cannavaro, on the occasion of his 100th cap, was instrumental in their defensive achievement. Amid wild scenes of joy on the pitch he jumped onto the podium and lifted the trophy, the fourth of Italy’s history.

Post match celebrations

Following the match the streets and plazas of Italy were filled with celebrating fans, with flags waving from thousands of cars and motorbikes.


  • 1 Final
  • 2 Penalties
  • 3 Formations
    • 3.1 France
    • 3.2 Italy
  • 4 Officials
  • 5 Related news
  • 6 Sources
21 August

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20 August

RU486 Abortion pill hearings begin in Australia

Friday, February 3, 2006

An Australian Senate inquiry into the abortion pill “RU486” has started public hearings in Melbourne. A controversial conscience vote on the issue to overturn laws which prohibit Australian women’s access to the drug, will be held in Federal parliament on February 9.

The Senate committee is considering a bill to remove ministerial control of the abortifacient drug Mifepristone – or RU486. Health Minister Tony Abbott says the issue of whether to allow women access to the drug “is one of principle.” Abbott, who is against abortion, insists he is the right person to control the drug’s use in Australia.

Besides its use internationally as an “abortion pill”, there may also be a small chance that it may help treat various other medical disorders including prostate cancer, breast cancer, and inoperable brain tumours amongst other conditions. Mifepristone is effectively banned in Australia, with Minister Abbott controlling whether it is made available.

The bill, sponsored by a group of female senators and MPs, would hand Mr Abbott’s powers over to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) – the body that controls all other pharmaceutical drugs in Australia. The bill seeks to have the TGA determine the drug’s availability and not the Health Minister.

Democrats Leader Lyn Allison, said she was “cautiously confident” the parliament will overturn the current arrangements when the conscience vote takes place. “Those who are in favour of the bill are saying this is a choice that ought to be available to women and that on the basis of the studies that have been done overseas it is at least as safe as surgical termination,” Senator Allison said.

Reproductive Choice Australia (RCA)say that medicine is placed at the whim of politics, saying that over 80% of Australians are pro-choice. A national survey found 87% of women aged 18 to 49 support a woman’s right to choose.

RU486 is available in much of western Europe and North America, but was effectively banned in Australia under laws initiated by now-retired pro-life senator Brian Harradine.

Christine Read, medical director of family planning group FPA Health, said Misoprostol, also known as Cytotec, is across the world to invoke contractions to expel the fetus after a woman had taken RU486. “It is used extensively in obstetrics and gynaecology for termination of pregnancy and to induce labour, so it’s used in the medical management of miscarriage,” Dr Read said.

Dr Sharman Stone, said yesterday the issue was not about Misoprostol, but rather that “the TGA should make the decision about any drugs – that is its job. Any other conversations about other drugs are simply irrelevant to this argument,” Dr Stone said.

Family First senator Steve Fielding says lifting a ban on RU486 would pave the way for do-it-yourself home abortions. “RU486 is different to other drugs in that it is an abortion drug which could see do-it-yourself home abortions,” he said in a statement. “The question is, should policy be made by bureaucrats or our elected leaders?

Senator Fielding claims Australians are worried about the high number of abortions in Australia, as reflected in submissions received by the Senate committee.

On Monday the committee will move to Sydney for a final day of hearings.

20 August

French National assembly to approve copyright bill

Monday, March 20, 2006

The French National Assembly is to adopt a bill, known as DADVSI (« Droits d’Auteurs et Droits Voisins de la Société de l’Information », “author’s right and related rights in the information society”), tomorrow. This bill reforms the French code of intellectual property (CPI) and other laws, mostly in order to implement the 2001 European directive on copyright.

The directive mandates legal protections of Digital rights management (DRM) measures against circumvention. DRMs are “digital locks” that prevent users from freely copying or playing contents, in order to enforce the copyright of the authors, artists, publishers and producers. The initial draft of the bill, proposed by Minister of Culture Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres, made circumvention of DRMs, or even facilitation thereof, a felony (délit), with a maximal penalty of 3 years in prison and/or a €300,000 fine as with counterfeiting. Since DRMs, circumvention and facilitations were not legally defined, it was feared that the law would effectively prevent competitors from creating players, especially based on free software, compatible with major systems such as Apple’s iPod or Microsoft’s Windows Media Player — or even to prevent the creation of any free software capable of loading files with DRM capabilities, that is, potentially most future text, audio or video file formats.

The initial draft also conserved the threat of a counterfeiting felony conviction for those exchanging copyrighted files on the Internet. This was judged to be unfairly repressive and unrealistic. In France, it is commonplace for Internet users to have broadband up to 16 megabits per second in cheaply priced (€30 a month or lower) ADSL packages, often comprising VoIP phone and television ; millions of users, especially the young, are believed to use peer-to-peer file sharing software. Lawmakers, from both the majority UMP party and the opposition, found it unwise to turn millions of citizens into potential felons. As a consequence, the Minister proposed a “gradual” scheme where mere downloading of one file would be punishable by a €38 fine, which was adopted as an amendment. It remains to be seen how the law will be enforced.

With respects to DRMs, lawmakers from both the majority UMP party, the centrist Union for French democracy and the opposition adopted amendments that make it compulsory for publishers of DRM-encumbered content to give the specifications to whomever would like to implement a compatible player. This proposal was decried by some US news sources as targeting Apple Computer’s iTunes system, tied to the iPod players. It is yet unknown, though, if these amendments would apply to companies that choose not to claim the new special protection awarded to DRMs by the law, which enable them to sue those who implement software meant to circumvent their protections.

Lawmakers also expressed concerns that the proposed law would weaken existing legal exceptions to copyright, especially the right for users to make copies of copyrighted files for private use (CPI L122-5).

The lawmaking process was quite a bumpy one. In December, lawmakers adopted a surprise amendment that would legalize peer-to-peer sharing as “private copy”, much to the dismay of the Minister of Culture. The amendment, proposed by a bipartisan coalition of majority UMP and opposition lawmakers, was the first in a series that would have established a system known as the “global license” through which Internet users would have paid a flat fee in exchange for an authorization to use peer-to-peer services. The fees collected would be redistributed to authors and performers. In March, the Minister tried to withdraw article 1 of the law, which was the one that was amended to his dislike, but the next day he had to reintroduce it because withdrawing it may have been unconstitutional. The Assembly then voted the article down and adopted an Article 1 “bis”, essentially an amended version of article 1 without the legalization of peer-to-peer sharing.

The law, initially presented as an uncontroversial, technical text, soon became a hot topic. Some lawmakers, both from the opposition and the majority, decried intense lobbying by the entertainment industry. Some amendments were nicknamed the “Vivendi Universal amendment”, from the name of a major entertainment company that some lawmakers and commentators claim has inspired them. UMP lawmakers such as Bernard Carayon denounced pressures and even blackmail from some powerful lobbies.

The Assembly will very probably adopt the bill on March 21, despite the opposition of some UMP, UDF and opposition lawmakers. The bill will then be sent to the French Senate for further amendment and approval. Since the government declared the bill to be urgent, it is probably that after examination by the Senate, the bill will be sent to a mixed Assembly/Senate commission for harmonization, then finally voted. Given that some UMP and opposition lawmakers have voiced concerns about the constitutionality of some episodes of the lawmaking process, it is likely that the bill will get sent to the Constitutional Council for constitutional review. Finally, president Jacques Chirac is likely to sign it into law.

20 August

The Raveonettes on love, death, desire and war

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

“We’re only two days in and we’re already fucking tired,” says Sune Rose Wagner to David Shankbone as he walks into the dressing room at the Bowery Ballroom. Wagner and Sharin Foo comprise the Raveonettes, a group made for “nostalgists who long for Everly Brothers 45’s and diner jukeboxes, the Raveonettes tweak “American Graffiti”-era rock with fuzzed-out surf-guitar riffs,” said The New York Times. They recently left Columbia and signed with Fierce Panda because they felt constrained by their Columbia contract: “The major label system sometimes doesn’t allow for outside “help” to get involved, meaning that we don’t get to choose who we wanna work with. That can be a pretty terrible thing and bad things will surely come of it,” said the band on their MySpace site. Originally from Denmark, both musicians live in the United States now.

Their first EP, Chain Gang of Love, was a critical and commercial success. “Few albums provoke such amazing imagery,” said the BBC. “Pretty in Black is virtually fuzz-free,” said Rolling Stone of their next album, “highlighting the exquisite detail in the Raveonettes’ gift for pastiche: the prowling, garage-surf guitars in Love in a Trashcan; the ghost dance of Red Tan, wrapped in Phil Spector-style sleigh bells.” Of their current album, Lust Lust Lust, set to be released on November 5th (although Amazon says March 4, 2008), Sune told NME that, “There are a lot of songs that deal with desire, restlessness and the tough choices you have to make sometimes.” Fans can hear some of the new material at MySpace.com/TheRaveonettes.

Below is Wikinews reporter David Shankbone’s interview with Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo.


  • 1 On influences
  • 2 On America
  • 3 On death
  • 4 On war
  • 5 On love
  • 6 On themselves
  • 7 On touring
  • 8 On metaphysics
  • 9 Sources
19 August

Retirement Overview}

Retirement – Overview


Elsa Thomas

Retirement can be best defined as a phase in life when one person stops working completely. Depending upon the situation one is faced with a person can retire partially, what is known as semi-retire and work for a lesser hours. At the same time there is the option of voluntary retirement systems too that individuals opt for. Planning post retirement has become a necessity in todays day and age. The most important reason being the uncertainty that is attached to life. As a result you would come across so many brands coming up with retire planning and retirement schemes for people to invest. The other reason being that people want to be engaged in some sort of work even when they are not working full time.

Fast Facts about Retirement

Let us have a look at some of the fast facts that are associated with retirement. We have listed down the same for you:-

1. There are people who choose to retire at a given age and time. This is true for both public as well as private enterprises.

2. On the other hand, there are few who asked to retire keeping in mind their ailments and other allied health conditions.

3. In majority of the countries the concept of retirement is rather very recent. This was introduced in the 19th and 20th century.

4. In early years, the lack of pension deals and low life expectancy meant that most employees or workers would have to carry on with their services until death.

5. The first country that introduced this concept of retirement is Germany.

Retirement Basics

These days Retirement is very common globally. Most of countries have come up with programs and systems by which they can offer pensions to employees when they retire in their old age. This might be sponsored by the state or the employer. In todays day and age, retirement along with pension payments is taken as a right that workers deserve. In most of the western countries the right is even added in the national constitution.

Retirement Hobbies

Most people cultivate retirement hobbies. The idea is to spend the non-working days in some sort of activity and fulfillment. One can travel places post retirement, but some sort of activity is required to keep life going. The most popular retire hobbies or activities that senior citizens find interest in are:-

1. Gardening

2. Pottery

3. Music

4. Teaching

5. Handicrafts

6. Painting

7. Origami

Retirement Planning is concerned with health and financial stability through investment plans, insurance, healthcare policies and lots more. Planning for retirement, a little prior is necessary to make your retired years meaningful and free of worry.


Article Source:

Retirement – Overview}

19 August

Doctor robbed, car-jacked and locked in boot while car set alight

Monday, March 19, 2007

A 34 year old obstetrician from Forestville on Sydney’s Northern Beaches has escaped after he was robbed, car-jacked and locked in the boot (trunk) of his BMW, which was set alight. Police say the doctor was locked in the boot while his car was set alight, but was allowed to escape before flames engulfed the vehicle.

The Doctor was believed to have been heading to The Mater Hospital in North Sydney when he was waiting at the intersection of West and Falcon Streets in Chatswood around 3:15AM AEDT when a small red sedan with two men claiming to be police officers signalled him to stop. After crossing the intersection, the doctor stopped his car at the side of the road.

The doctor was then approached by the two men and when he asked to see identification, one man grabbed the keys from his car’s ignition before they both pulled the doctor out of his vehicle, hit him in the stomach with a hammer and stole his mobile phone and wallet. The robbers also demanded his key and credit cards along with their access codes before locking him in the boot.

Police allege that the men drove to several locations to withdraw cash and buy things before driving to Carisbook Street in Linley Point at around 4 a.m. local time where they set the car alight with the doctor still in the boot.

Crime Manager of the Harbourside Local Area Command, Detective Inspector Houlahan said that the doctor then “heard a click in the boot area and he heard someone call out: ‘Get out of the car'”

“When he pushed the boot up he found his car engulfed in flames.”

Det. Insp. Houlahan said the doctor told police he did not unlock the boot himself, and it appeared the man’s captors unlocked it before fleeing.

Det Insp Houlahan said that the doctor appeared to be “very distraught” and tired after the ordeal, and wanted to get home and see his wife and two young daughters.

He could only provide police with a vague description of his captors, but said the men were both Caucasian males aged in their 20s, and that one of them was about six feet tall (183cm) with short blond hair and medium build said Det. Insp. Houlahan.

18 August

Delta Blues wins 2006 Melbourne Cup

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

The Japanese owned Delta Blues ridden by Iwata Yasunari has won the AU$5.1 million 2006 Melbourne Cup. Trainer Katsuhiko Sumii also achieved the Quinella winning bet with stablemate Pop Rock, ridden by Damien Oliver, placing second in the race. Maybe Better came in at third, with Zipping posting a fourth place finish. Pre-race favourite Yeates missed the start, finishing seventh.

After the race, jockey Iwata joyfully shouted “Very happy, very happy. My biggest winner ever.”

Zabeat was the last finisher in a 23-horse field that was reduced in number after the early morning scratching from the race of Efficient with leg soreness.

Australians bet over $50 million dollars on the race, with Delta Blues paying $17.50 for the win, which made it the first horse from Japan to have won the race in the 145 year history of the Melbourne Cup.

17 August

US Secretary Rice responds to European enquiries on alleged CIA prisons

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

The United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has begun to address concerns raised by the EU, the Council of Europe, and several member countries about the CIA’s detention practices upon her arrival in Germany for a European tour that began Tuesday.

“As a matter of US policy, the United States’ obligations under the U.N. Convention Against Torture, which prohibits, of course, cruel and inhumane and degrading treatment, those obligations extend to US personnel wherever they are, whether they are in the United States or outside the United States,” said Rice, speaking from the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Wednesday.

Media reports and Human Rights groups have alleged that the CIA transported renditioned prisoners through European countries, which could violate European laws and the sovereignty of countries involved. Secretary Rice claimed that the United States has respected the sovereignty of other countries, and that it has not transported detainees from one country to another for the purpose of interrogation using torture, and has not transported anyone to a country when we believe he will be tortured.

“We consider the captured members of Al-Qaeda and its affiliates to be unlawful combatants who may be held, in accordance with the law of war, to keep them from killing innocents. We must treat them in accordance with our laws, which reflect the values of the American people. We must question them to gather potentially significant, life-saving, intelligence. We must bring terrorists to justice wherever possible,” Rice told reporters before she left from Andrews Air Force base on Monday.

Rice said that European nations should realize that interrogations of terrorist suspects have produced information that has saved European lives. However, Secretary Rice provided no specific cases.

“Secretary Rice made extra-legal rendition sound like just another form of extradition. In fact, it’s a form of kidnapping and ‘disappearing’ someone entirely outside the law,” said Tom Malinowski, a Human Rights Watch official in Washington.

The CIA practice known as “extraordinary rendition” is used to interrogate terrorist suspects outside the U.S., where they are not subject to American legal protection.

“Kidnapping a foreign national for the purpose of detaining and interrogating him outside the law is contrary to American values,” said Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on the Khalid El-Masri case. “Our government has acted as if it is above the law. We go to court today to reaffirm that the rule of law is central to our identity as a nation.”

The ACLU feels the government has to be held to account over “extraordinary rendition”.

17 August

Microsoft to buy back US$40 B of its stock over 5 years

Friday, July 21, 2006

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT, HKSE:4338) has announced plans to buy back US$40 billion of its stock between now and 2011.

(All further figures in this article are in U.S. Dollars.)

Microsoft, the world’s largest maker of computer software, will make a tender offer to repurchase $20 billion of its own stock by August 17, and will purchase another $20 billion by 2011. This is in addition to a previous $30 billion stock buyback offer it completed two years ago.

The company plans to accept offers in the form of a modified Dutch or “reverse auction”, and based on those offers for stock, come up with a price no less than $22.50 and no more than $24.75, that allows it to buy up to about 8.1% of the common shares outstanding, up to either 808,080,808 shares, or $20 billion. The company stated that it will not purchase shares below a price stipulated by a shareholder, and in some cases, may actually purchase shares at prices above a shareholder’s indication under the terms of the modified Dutch auction. Prior to the announcement, Microsoft shares were trading at $22.75, with the announcement causing share prices to rise $1.32, or 5.8%, to $24.17.

Microsoft has been criticized in the past for “sitting on” huge reserves of cash without making additional purchases of companies or technology.

The company expects to sell more units of its Xbox 360 game console, which currently is unprofitable, helping to shore up weaker earnings from its Office flagship software package, of which a new version is not expected until sometime next year.

On July 20 the company said profit for the year will be $1.43 to $1.47 a share, an increase from an April forecast of $1.36 to $1.41. For the quarter ending September, expected profit will be 30-32c/share on revenue of between $10.6-$10.8 billion. For fiscal 2006, earnings were 11% higher than the previous year, at $12.6 billion on revenues of $44.28 billion, or $1.20 per share. In the year-ago quarter, Microsoft reported net income of $3.70 billion, with legal expenses of 5 cents per share plus tax benefits of 9 cents per share. This produced a net income of 34 cents per share for the quarter, opposed to the 31 cents which would have occurred without the tax benefits. For the previous fiscal year, income was $12.25 billion on revenue of $39.79 billion, or $1.13 per share.

Microsoft held an audio web-cast at 2:30 p.m. PDT (5:30 p.m. EDT) July 20 with Chris Liddell, senior vice president and chief financial officer, Frank Brod, corporate vice president and chief accounting officer, and Colleen Healy, general manager of Investor Relations. The session may be accessed at the Microsoft website. The web-cast will be available for replay through the close of business on July 20, 2007.

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