The Richard Nixon school of ballet and the arts / I'm extremely disappointed in your recent behavior« on: January 09, 2012, 04:11:14 am »
What's your excuse?
Urgh, this is what I hate about PD.com, it is the only site in existence where a perfectly good spam thread can be misused for high quality discussions. I hate you all.
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WASHINGTON — Nearly four years after the federal government began a string of investigations and criminal prosecutions against Blackwater Worldwide personnel accused of murder and other violent crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, the cases are beginning to fall apart, burdened by a legal obstacle of the government’s own making.
In the most recent and closely watched case, the Justice Department on Monday said that it would not seek murder charges against Andrew J. Moonen, a Blackwater armorer accused of killing a guard assigned to an Iraqi vice president on Dec. 24, 2006. Justice officials said that they were abandoning the case after an investigation that began in early 2007, and included trips to Baghdad by federal prosecutors and F.B.I. agents to interview Iraqi witnesses.
The government’s decision to drop the Moonen case follows a series of failures by prosecutors around the country in cases aimed at former personnel of Blackwater, which is now known as Xe Services. In September, a Virginia jury was unable to reach a verdict in the murder trial of two former Blackwater guards accused of killing two Afghan civilians. Late last year, charges were dismissed against five former Blackwater guards who had been indicted on manslaughter and related weapons charges in a September 2007 shooting incident in Nisour Square in Baghdad, in which 17 Iraqi civilians were killed.
NEW YORK – Frito-Lay hopes to quiet complaints about its noisy SunChips bags by switching out the biodegradable bags for the old packaging on most flavors.
The company is switching back to original packaging, which is made of a type of plastic, for five of the six varieties of the chips. It will keep the biodegradable bags for its sixth variety, its original plain flavor. That's its second best-selling, after Harvest Cheddar.
Stony Brook University officials are proposing to slash spending on Stony Brook Southampton, effectively reducing operations at the 81-acre Shinnecock Hills campus to two buildings and pulling the plug on most of the programs offered there, in order to save money, according to local politicians.
The proposal comes just four years after Stony Brook University purchased the campus for $35 million from Long Island University, and invested tens of millions of dollars in an effort to transform it into a center for sustainability and environmental studies.
In a closed meeting at the Stony Brook University’s main campus on Tuesday afternoon, Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. discussed the proposal with New York State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr., State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle and U.S. Representative Tim Bishop, according to Mr. Thiele and Mr. LaValle.
Mr. Thiele, who along with Mr. LaValle was instrumental in convincing the state to provide the money to acquire the college, described Stony Brook University’s expected announcement as a “breach of faith.” In the same press release issued Tuesday evening, Mr. Thiele said Stony Book University officials “are taking the substantial goodwill created by Stony Brook on the East End in the last five years and flushing it down the toilet.”
As per the proposal, the Shinnecock Hills campus will remain open, but will no longer house students starting this fall, and the academic programs offered there would be reduced to marine sciences and a graduate degree in writing, according to Mr. Thiele. The campus currently offers nine undergraduate majors, along with the graduate degree in writing.
The 500 students who currently attend the satellite campus, which is operated as a quasi-seperate entity from the main campus, would probably be absorbed into the main campus, according to Mr. Thiele.
Mr, Thiele also said that most of the facilities at the campus, including the library, student center and dormitories, would be shuttered under the current plan.
Immediately after the meeting, Mr. Thiele said he expected Stony Brook University officials to announce that their decision is final within the next 24 to 48 hours.
“I was left with no indication that they intended to consider other alternatives,” Mr. Thiele said.
Representatives from Stony Brook University, as well as Mary Pearl, the dean and administrative vice president of Stony Brook Southampton, could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday evening.
Stony Brook University underwent a change of leadership this summer, when Dr. Stanley, formerly the vice chancellor for research and a professor of molecular microbiology at Washington University in St. Louis, took the reins from Shirley Strum Kenny, who retired after 15 years of service. Stony Brook Southampton was purchased under Dr. Kenny’s leadership.
In the last 18 months, New York State has handed down more than $500 million in cuts to the State University of New York System, $33 million of which have been passed on to Stony Brook University, according to Mr. LaValle, who also spoke out against the proposal to make drastic cuts at Stony Brook Southampton.
Mr. Thiele said that Stony Brook University estimates it will save $6 million per year by cutting back programs offered at Stony Brook Southampton.
Five years ago, Long Island University, the original owners of the campus, were proposing to close the college and sell the land to developers. An outcry from the community, and the help of local politicians, thwarted that sale and set the stage for Stony Brook’s acquisition of the campus.