Sunderland eying £6.5m French striker after shocking Premier League start

first_img1 French striker Sebastien Haller. Sunderland are lining up a move for Utrecht’s £6.5million-rated hitman Sebastien Haller.The French striker only arrived in Holland from Auxerre in January but caught the eye with 11 Eredivisie goals in just 17 appearances.That form attracted the attention of Brentford but the trail went cold when the Championship side discovered Utrecht’s asking price, according to reports.But now Sunderland are going to have a crack at bringing him to England as manager Dick Advocaat bids to revitalise his team, who are bottom having lost their opening two Premier League games.Sources in Holland have revealed that the manager sent scouts to watch Haller in action for Utrecht against Heerenveen at the weekend, during which the 21-year-old scored in a 1-1 draw.It was the striker’s third goal in two games this season and now Advocaat is ready to make his move.last_img read more

Liverpool and Tottenham striker target hints at Bayer Leverkusen exit

first_img1 German striker Stefan Kiessling has put Liverpool and Tottenham on red alert by revealing he may leave Bayer Leverkusen.The towering frontman has scored 19 goals in each of the last two seasons but he has been demoted to the bench this year following the arrival of Javier Hernandez.Former Manchester United forward Hernandez joined Leverkusen from Old Trafford in the summer and with 15 goals in his last 12 games, he has kept Kiessling out of the side.Kiessling is in his tenth season at Leverkusen and would be open to staying, but admits he may have to leave in search of first-team football.Liverpool and Tottenham both scouted the 31-year-old in the summer and may now make a January swoop for him.“I’ve got to be honest and say we’ll have to see,” Kiessling told Sky Sport Deutschland . “I’ve given it some thought and I will keep thinking about it.“The situation is that of course I would like to be playing – I’ve been here for 10 years and love this club and everybody knows how happy I am here.“I’ve got a pretty good relationship with the fans and of course also with the club. I love playing here and I love this club, and it’s overall a very, very difficult situation for me and everybody knows this.” Bayer Leverkusen striker Stefan Kiessling last_img read more

Factory-order drop biggest in 7 months

first_imgA recession is often defined as two consecutive quarters of falling economic output. In other news, the Labor Department said the number of newly laid off workers filing claims for unemployment benefits shot up by 16,000 to 317,000. It was the largest one-week rise in four months. While the increase was bigger than had been expected, analysts said it followed two weeks in which claims had fallen, leaving the weekly number little changed over the past month. Department analysts said that the two-day auto strike involving General Motors Corp. did not appear to have a significant impact on the claims figures last week, according to preliminary information from the states. Analysts believe the unemployment rate probably rose in September to 4.7 percent, from 4.6 percent in August, although they are expecting that businesses added 100,000 jobs to their payrolls. That would be an improvement from the net loss of 4,000 jobs in August, the first monthly job loss in four years. The employment data for September were to be released on Friday. Wall Street had a quiet session on Thursday as traders anxiously awaited the September unemployment report, which they believe will provide the Federal Reserve with key data in making its decision on whether to cut interest rates further. The Dow Jones industrial average edged up 6.26 points to close at 13,974.31. After the release of the surprisingly bad jobs report for August, the Fed decided to cut a key interest rate for the first time in four years – by one-half of a percentage point, which was larger than expected.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREChargers go winless in AFC West with season-ending loss in Kansas CityIn a troublesome sign, business demand for nondefense capital goods excluding aircraft – considered a good gauge for investment plans – dropped 0.5 percent in August. This decline was blamed partly on greater caution among businesses in the face of the credit crunch, which caused the stock market’s turbulence in the late summer. The drop in factory orders included big declines in two industries affected by troubles in the housing market. Demand for home appliances fell 7.2 percent and orders for furniture slipped 4.4 percent. Some economists are worried that the steepest housing slump in 16 years and the biggest credit crunch in nearly a decade could push the country into a full-blown recession. But other analysts believe the economy will muddle through without a downturn. “The numbers look soft, but not recession-soft,” said David Wyss, chief economist at Standard & Poor’s in New York. He said overall economic growth probably slowed to about 2.7 percent in the just-completed July through September quarter and will slow to about 1.5 percent in the final three months of the year. WASHINGTON – Orders to factories fell in August by the largest amount in seven months, reflecting weakness across a wide swath of manufacturing as the turbulent financial market made businesses more cautious. The Commerce Department said orders dropped by 3.3 percent in August, even worse than the expected 2.8 percent decline. It was the biggest setback since orders fell 4.2 percent in January. Demand for commercial aircraft fell 39.9 percent, leading the decline. Orders also were weak for other industries, from autos and home appliances to industrial machinery and steel. Orders for durable goods, which are items expected to last at least three years, fell by 4.9 percent. Demand for nondurable goods, such as food, clothing and gasoline, declined 1.6 percent. last_img read more

Music industry victorious in file-share case

first_img“We don’t know what happened,” Toder told jurors. “All we know is that Jammie Thomas didn’t do this.” Gabriel called that defense “misdirection, red herrings, smoke and mirrors.” He told jurors a verdict against Thomas would send a message to other illegal downloaders. “I only ask that you consider that the need for deterrence here is great,” he said. Copyright law sets a damage range of $750 to $30,000 per infringement, or up to $150,000 if the violation was “willful.” Jurors ruled that Thomas’s infringement was willful but awarded damages of $9,250 per song; Gabriel said they did not explain to attorneys afterward how they reached that amount. Thomas, of Brainerd, works for the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe’s Department of Natural Resources. Before the verdict, an official with an industry trade group said he was surprised it had taken so long for one of the industry’s lawsuits against individual downloaders to come to trial. Illegal downloads have “become business as usual, nobody really thinks about it,” said Cary Sherman, president of the Recording Industry Association of America, which coordinates the lawsuits. “This case has put it back in the news. Win or lose, people will understand that we are out there trying to protect our rights.” Thomas’ testimony was complicated by the fact that she had replaced her computer’s hard drive after the sharing was alleged to have taken place – and later than she said in a deposition before trial. The hard drive in question was not presented at trial by either party, though Thomas used her new one to show the jury how fast it copies songs from CDs. That was an effort to counter an industry witness’s assertion that the songs on the old drive got there too fast to have come from CDs she owned – and therefore must have been downloaded illegally.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREChargers go winless in AFC West with season-ending loss in Kansas CityIn the first such lawsuit to go to trial, the record companies accused Thomas of downloading the songs without permission and offering them online through a Kazaa file-sharing account. Thomas denied wrongdoing and testified that she didn’t have a Kazaa account. Record companies have filed some 26,000 lawsuits since 2003 over file-sharing, which has hurt sales because it allows people to get music for free instead of paying for recordings in stores. Many other defendants have settled by paying the companies a few thousand dollars. The RIAA says the lawsuits have mitigated illegal sharing, even though music file-sharing is rising overall. The group says the number of households that have used file-sharing programs to download music has risen from 6.9 million monthly in April 2003, before the lawsuits began, to 7.8 million in March 2007. During the three-day trial, the record companies presented evidence they said showed the copyrighted songs were offered by a Kazaa user under the name “tereastarr.” Their witnesses, including officials from an Internet provider and a security firm, testified that the Internet address used by “tereastarr” belonged to Thomas. Toder said in his closing that the companies never proved “Jammie Thomas, a human being, got on her keyboard and sent out these things.” DULUTH, Minn. – The recording industry won a key fight Thursday against illegal music downloading when a federal jury found that a Minnesota woman shared copyrighted music online and levied $222,000 in damages against her. The jury ordered Jammie Thomas, 30, to pay the six record companies that sued her $9,250 for each of 24 songs they focused on in the case. They had alleged she shared 1,702 songs online in violation of their copyrights. Thomas and her attorney, Brian Toder, declined comment as they left the courthouse. Jurors also left without commenting. “This does send a message, I hope, that downloading and distributing our recordings is not OK,” said Richard Gabriel, the lead attorney for the music companies. last_img read more

Man bites another man’s ear

first_imgLANCASTER – It wasn’t Mike Tyson nor did it occur in the boxing ring, but cops today were looking for a man who bit off part of another man’s ear. The crime occurred last night in the 43000 block of 27th Street East, said sheriff’s Sgt. Brian Dunn of the Lancaster Station. The victim, whose name was unavailable, told deputies that a named suspect “had bit his ear off, then spit it back at him after a short struggle …” he said. The suspect was identified as 37-year-old Gregory Jordan of Lancaster. It was unclear what provoked the attack. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.The victim was hospitalized, Dunn said. The lower half of his ear was not found, he said. Deputies arrested a woman who helped Jordan evade arrest, Dunn said. Her name was unavailable. The incident is reminiscent of the time in 1997 when boxer Mike Tyson bit off a part of Evander Holyfield’s ear during a rematch bout. Tyson said he did it to retaliate against Holyfield who he accused of repeatedly and intentionally headbutting him. For the latest news and observations on crime in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, check out the Daily News’ crime blog by clicking here.last_img read more

Prayer network on a mission to save Hollywood’s celebuwrecks

first_img“We tell people, `If you’re angry at a TV show or you’re switching channels because of content, stop and pray for the people on the show,”‘ said Karen Covell, HPN’s founder. “If you really believe in God and you believe God has a transforming power, then leave it up to him.” The group, which is co-hosting a 700-person prayer breakfast in Beverly Hills on Friday, is part of a larger movement among Christians who feel that Hollywood may be the best vehicle for reaching the uninitiated, said Robert Johnston, a professor of theology and culture at Fuller Seminary in Pasadena. A megastar who turns his or her life around and gives the credit to God could have a tremendous influence on today’s younger generations, he said. “The prayer network is the equivalent and perhaps more important than praying for our president,” Johnston said. “Just as churches have traditionally prayed for leaders, now we recognize that one of our primary sources of leadership is the entertainment industry.” Hollywood insiders, however, say most stars probably don’t want any divine intervention – and they question the logic of praying for A-list celebrities when there are more pressing issues such as world hunger, poverty and war. “This kind of attitude comes off as very sanctimonious and a bit creepy, frankly,” said longtime celebrity publicist Michael Levine. “I have been to some born-again Christian events that are every bit as discomforting to me as Tommy Lee at his worst.” That attitude hasn’t fazed the Hollywood Prayer Network. “It’s this higher need. If I were asked not to, what would I do? I don’t know if I could turn off this compassion that I feel,” said member Terri Renfro. “I’m called to do this, so I do.” Hundreds of people have signed up for the Incognito Prayer Network, an informal list that allows members to pray for a celebrity of their choosing – or for one assigned to them. The group also hands out stickers for remote controls that read “Pray For This Show,” takes prayer walks on studio lots and sells red plastic bracelets stamped with the Hollywood ZIP code, 90028. Spears is at the top of prayer requests these days, Covell said, but celebrities don’t have to be on the brink of a meltdown to get a little religious TLC. Some members pray for their favorite actors, for a star who seems lonely or for someone who’s had a string of box office flops. “People will pull me aside at church and say, `I really have a heart for Jennifer Aniston or whoever, but I feel weird praying for them because I don’t know them,”‘ said Covell, who herself is a TV producer. “I say, `No, no, pray for them.’ It’s like a gift for them that they don’t even know they’re getting.” A publicist for Spears’ label, Jive Records, did not return an e-mail requesting comment. A Hilton publicist also did not respond to a request for comment. Renfro said she’s currently praying for Spears, but has prayed in the past for Robert Downey Jr. and Robin Williams – both of whom have battled addictions. Renfro, who belongs to a nondenominational church near San Francisco, puts Post-It notes on her computer to remind her to pray, but sometimes it’s hard to forget when her celebrity is nonstop tabloid fodder. She recalled a day she prayed for Downey and then later found out he had been arrested. “It was one of those cases where the Holy Spirit prompted me,” she said. Renfro, 49, also volunteers for the network’s new Kids Prayer Calender. She targets a different child or teen star for prayer each day of the month. Some are well-known (Miley Cyrus, Dakota Fanning, Daniel Radcliffe) but others, like pint-sized Rachel Covey of Disney’s “Enchanted,” are just entering the business. The goal is to swaddle these budding stars in prayer before they become the next Spears or Lindsay Lohan, she said. “Some of them are little, little teeny kids,” said Renfro, who labels them “Ones2Watch” on the prayer calendar. “It doesn’t really matter if I think they’ll be somebody big, because there’s a value in praying for anybody who comes across this industry.” That’s wisdom Michael Gordon takes to heart. The 46-year-old actor, whose stage name is Michael Dean, signed up for a prayer mentor with the network a year ago after struggling to squeeze endless auditions – and rejections – around his day job at FedEx. The support from his prayer partner, an analyst with J.P. Morgan in Denver, has given Gordon the confidence to push ahead and even reveal his faith to some of his acting peers. “When I think about biblical examples, those are the kinds of people that Jesus hung out with,” said Gordon. “He was with the lepers and the blind and the poor and the outcast and, it’s like, here I am, I’m dealing with those types of people and I have the opportunity to be a positive influence in their lives.” For news and observations about crime in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley, check out the Daily News’ crime blog by clicking here.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Anyone who thinks Britney Spears’ best days are behind should know this – she does have a prayer. The celebuwreck, who has been struggling to get custody of her kids while launching a comeback, is the top prayer-getter at the Hollywood Prayer Network, a group of more than 5,000 Christians who pray for stars instead of writing them off as lost causes. The network recently passed a Bible to socialite Paris Hilton and plans to pass one to Spears later this month. It also picks up-and-coming child stars for its monthly Kids Prayer Calendar and pairs hundreds of mentors with struggling actors – the kind more likely to take your order in a restaurant than appear on your television. Members of the network, which has chapters in 16 U.S. cities and eight countries, see Hollywood as the 21st century’s largest mission field, a powerful industry that can be used to sow the seeds of an international cultural and religious revival. last_img

Intersection to be named ‘I Love Lucy Square’

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The late comedian Lucille Ball and the owner of Lucy’s El Adobe Cafe will be recognized for their contributions to Hollywood today with the renaming of an intersection to “I Love Lucy Square.” Ball and Lucy Casado will share the honor at the intersection of Melrose Avenue and Plymouth Boulevard near Paramount Studios. It was there, in 1951, that Ball and her husband, Desi Arnaz, started Desilu Productions. Lucy’s El Adobe Cafe is a popular campaign stop for local and national politicians. It is also the restaurant where former California Gov. Jerry Brown, now the state’s attorney general, first met singer Linda Ronstadt in the 1970s. Councilman Tom LaBonge will unveil the square’s new sign during an afternoon ceremony. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre last_img read more

Boxer blocking former Rep. Rogan nomination to federal judiciary

first_imgWASHINGTON – Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer is blocking the nomination of former GOP Rep. James E. Rogan to the federal bench, citing his lead role in the impeachment of former President Bill Clinton as one of her concerns. Her stance is angering Rogan allies who contend that Boxer is reneging on her support for a bipartisan commission set up in California that recommends judicial nominees to the White House. Boxer disputes that. “Congressman Rogan was one of the most enthusiastic backers of impeachment – he thought President Clinton had committed high crimes and misdemeanors. The Senate certainly disagreed with that conclusion, as did Sen. Boxer,” said Boxer’s spokeswoman Natalie Ravitz. Boxer also believes that Rogan’s strongly conservative positions on gun control, abortion and other issues make him “out of step with California,” Ravitz said. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat Kings Rogan, who’s currently a state Superior Court judge in Orange County appointed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, served in the House from 1997-2001 and was one of the managers of impeachment proceedings against Clinton in 1998. He declined comment. “Out of respect for the Senate and its process, I just don’t have any comment on this,” he said. Rogan left Congress after losing to Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Pasadena, in an $11 million contest that was the most expensive House race in history. Rogan then served for several years as director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. President Bush nominated Rogan a year ago to a seat on the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, and renominated him in January when the new Democratic-controlled Congress convened. However, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., has a policy of not advancing judicial nominees who don’t have the support of their home-state senators, and neither Boxer nor Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., has committed to supporting Rogan, according to committee spokeswoman Erica Chabot. Boxer declared her opposition in a statement Thursday while Feinstein has not yet taken a position. After Bush took office, Feinstein and Boxer set up a Judicial Advisory Commission with the White House that recommends nominees to fill federal judicial vacancies in California. The group is referred to as the Parsky Commission because members are appointed by Feinstein, Boxer and Gerry Parsky, a top Bush adviser in California. Rogan was recommended by the Parsky Commission. Although Boxer denies it, Rogan’s former campaign manager, Jason Roe, said Boxer was consulted in advance and didn’t object. “Those of us who have watched this process take place have expected the participants to live up to the commitment they made. Why Sen. Boxer would have done that for seven years and suddenly changed course confuses everyone that’s observed this,” Roe said. “If she’s got an ax to grind, that’s what the hearing is for,” Roe added. Judicial nominees get hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Ravitz contended that Boxer has never supported Rogan and never told anyone she did. “When the Parsky Commission was set up in 2001, Sen. Boxer said it was her hope and expectation that the process would result in ‘highly qualified, moderate judicial candidates.’ Over the years, the process has worked beautifully,” Ravitz said. “This time we disagree.” White House spokesman Trey Bohn declined to comment beyond encouraging support for Rogan. “Judge Rogan enjoys broad bipartisan support and we urge the Senate to confirm him,” said Bohn. Parsky did not immediately return a call.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Patients not informed about breast reconstruction

first_imgMost doctors don’t talk about breast reconstruction with women before cancer surgery, depriving them of key information that can sway their decision about whether to have the whole breast or just a lump removed, new research suggests. Only one-third of the roughly 1,200 women in the study said surgeons discussed cosmetic remedies with them in advance. When the topic did come up, women were four times more likely to choose the more drastic operation, mastectomy. That could be because they liked the breast reconstruction options, which include implants that are not available for fixing odd-shaped defects left after lumpectomies. But mastectomies can be a dubious choice because breast-conserving lumpectomies usually suffice. “Our point is not to say that one decision is better than another, but that women need to know all their options,” said Dr. Amy Alderman, the University of Michigan plastic surgeon who led the study. “There are positives and negatives to both. We shouldn’t be paternalistic and tell patients, `This is what you need.”‘ AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhicker: Clemson demonstrates that it’s tough to knock out the champDr. H. Kim Lyerly, a breast surgeon and director of Duke University’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, agreed. “This is an important issue,” he said. “We clearly need to be better at it.” The study is published online today by the journal Cancer and will be in the Feb. 1 issue. It is the second report in recent days to call attention to the often-neglected cosmetic consequences of cancer surgery. Studies at last week’s San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium highlighted some of these, including the limited options for millions of women left with dimpled or cratered breasts after lumpectomies. Doctors say the latest study, done in more than 100 hospitals in the Detroit and Los Angeles areas, may overstate the doctor-patient communication problem, but they acknowledge that one exists. “I would bet that we have been so obsessed with treatment that this quality-of-life issue is one that we just haven’t focused on,” said Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society. Breast cancer is the most common major cancer in American women. More than 178,000 new cases are expected this year in the U.S., and more than 1 million worldwide. For cancer that has not widely spread, most women have a lumpectomy, but some need or prefer a mastectomy. Alderman studied whether knowing about breast reconstruction swayed which treatment women chose. Researchers surveyed 1,178 women three months after breast cancer surgery, from 2001 to 2003. Two-thirds said reconstruction never came up in discussions with general surgeons before their operations. Younger women were more likely to have had this talk than older ones (the average age was 56 for those who did versus 61 for those who did not). More educated women also were more likely to discuss it. Who brought up the topic – patient or doctor – was not asked. The National Cancer Institute paid for the study. Women who see breast specialists rather than general surgeons may be more apt to get plastic surgery consultations, Lyerly said. Many women want to conserve breast tissue, and a surgeon must make sure that medical issues are not outweighed by body image concerns. “If we provide too much information, that’s also not the more effective way of communicating either,” he said. “It could be that they’re so fixed on other issues that two sentences on breast reconstruction totally was not heard.” However, treatment guidelines do not spell out what doctors should say and when, so “this study is likely to get some traction,” Brawley said. Dr. Sameer Patel, a reconstructive surgeon at the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, said some doctors are too focused on the medical part of the decision about what operation to have. “They’re trying to take care of the cancer, and that (cosmetic impact) takes a back seat,” he said. Debbie Horwitz, 35, of Raleigh, N.C., encountered that attitude three years ago, when she found a cancerous lump. Her mother had died of breast cancer and her grandmother also had the disease, so when tests showed she had a mutated gene raising her risk of future tumors, she had a double mastectomy.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

LAUSD says it will give Chick audits

first_imgLos Angeles Unified officials said Friday that they will comply with City Controller Laura Chick’s Public Records Act request for district audits. Glenn Gritzner, special assistant to Superintendent Roy Romer, said the school district hopes to compile the thousands of pages within two weeks. “We’re going to give her everything she asked for in her request as soon as we can,” Gritzner said. “It’s going to take a lot of work to get these documents together.” Under the Public Records Act, the district could charge 25 cents for the first page and 10 cents for subsequent pages, but Gritzner said it’s not planning on asking her to pay. State law gives the district 10 working days to comply with such a request, but agencies often seek more time. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson Chick said she’s upset with the district’s slow response to her request, filed Dec. 26. “It is disappointing that the school district continues to play silly games,” she said. “Unfortunately it denigrates what we are trying to do here which is all about improving public education for our children. They keep saying they want transparency, but do everything they can to prevent it.” last_img read more