Monday, May 31, 2010

48.5 hours, or slightly more than two full days a week playing games

NEW YORK - APRIL 17: XBox 360 video games are ...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
According to “Gamer Segmentation 2010,” the most recent report from market research company The NPD Group, the “extreme gamers” segment, which represents four percent of the total U.S. gaming population, spend 48.5 hours, or slightly more than two full days a week playing games. Overall, U.S. gamers ages two and older spend 13 hours per week playing games, up from 12.3 hours in 2009, the report found.

When looking at the number of hours gamers spend per week playing video games, hours spent playing both console and PC games showed a marked increase over last year's study, with console games increasing nine percent and PC games increasing six percent. The number of hours gamers spent playing portable games saw a decline of 16 percent. The average age of gamers increased slightly over last year from 31 years of age in the 2009 study to 32 years in this year’s study, the report found. NPD said avid PC gamers and offline PC gamers, comprising 11 percent and 8 percent of the gaming population, respectively, are the oldest segments with an average age for both of 42 years.


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Friday, May 28, 2010

Two arrested for pushing software on Craigslist

Image representing Craigslist as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBaseA joint investigation between the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) and the Software & Information Industry Alliance has led to the arrests of two men pushing pirated software on Craigslist.
According to the alliance (SIIA), Duong Tran, 29, and Huy Nguyen, 27, were arrested May 25 after a nine-month investigation. The duo is accused of manufacturing and distributing thousands of pieces of counterfeit software, including pirated versions of software from Adobe Systems, Rosetta Stone and Autodesk.


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Thursday, May 27, 2010

The lack of regulatory consistency across Europe

Main meeting room of the European Commission i...Image via Wikipedia
The lack of regulatory consistency across Europe means that businesses and consumers are paying higher prices than necessary and that new telecommunications services are being held back, warns the European Commission.

The EC released on Tuesday the 15th version of its annual report on progress in the European Union’s electronic communications market. It found that telecom regulation across the region remains nationally focused, with regulators often procrastinating over the introduction of EU laws.
Because of this, the key to growth in the telecom market, particularly for the creation of next-generation broadband networks, lies in consistent enforcement of legislation across Europe, according to the report.


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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Your driving habits

Image representing Jabra as depicted in CrunchBaseImage via CrunchBase
What are people doing on the road while they're driving? The most common activities include texting, eating, changing clothes, using a GPS navigator, yelling at other drivers, and (blush) engaging in sexual acts. Bluetooth headset maker Jabra recently created a six-country survey to find out just how bad our driving habits are. Here are some findings:

•29% of respondents admitted to having kissed others while driving, whereas a smaller, but surprising, number (15%) said they have performed sex or other sexual acts while driving

•28% confirmed they have sent text messages while driving

•13% reported they have applied makeup

•12% admitted to having written or read emails

•10% reported reading newspapers or magazines

•5% confessed to having played video games, and another 5% say that they have shaved while behind the wheel
Check out Jabra's Drive Responsibly site to learn more about the survey results


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Congress could retroactively impose a higher liability cap on BP

An oiled bird from Oil Spill in San Francisco ...Image via Wikipedia
The Justice Department said on Tuesday that Congress could retroactively impose a higher liability cap on BP to pay for the damage from its growing oil spill, and the company would likely lose if it challenged the higher cap in court.
Current law imposes a $75 million liability cap on economic damage. Since the BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico in late April, legislation has been introduced in Congress to raise the cap to $10 billion.
“Our view is that there is a strong chance to defeat any (legal challenge) if Congress were to lift the caps,” U.S. Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli told a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the oil spill.
“I believe that we have a system in dire need of repair,” Jeff Bingaman, the panel’s Democratic chairman, said about the current oil spill liability law.
Some lawmakers and legal experts have questioned whether Congress could make the higher liability cap apply to the BP accident. BP has said it would pay all legitimate claims and was not bound by the existing cap.
Perrelli told the committee the government had strong arguments to defeat anyone challenging any retroactively imposed cap.


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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

government needs BP's deepwater technology

The government needs BP's deepwater technology to try to shut off the gushing seabed Gulf of Mexico oil well but has brought its own experts into the battle to contain the catastrophic spill, a White House official said on Tuesday.

Carol Browner, adviser on Energy and Climate Change to President Barack Obama, said the administration was bringing all its resources to bear to the marathon effort to halt what is threatening to be the worst ever U.S. oil spill.
Browner told TV networks that top scientists called in by the government were working with BP's experts on the next bid, scheduled to start early Wednesday, to cap the mile- deep undersea well. This will be an attempted "top kill" -- the pumping of heavy drilling fluids into the well to try to halt its pressurized flow, after which cement can be injected in.
"We all want this to work ... we want this thing shut down," Browner told CNN.
Obama faces a backlash of public anger and frustration over the leaking well, which BP engineers and government officials have failed to control so far.
Shares in BP fell 4 percent on Tuesday, mirroring a fall for European oil and gas stocks and a drop in the FTSE 100 index of British blue-chips.
The disaster has wiped around 25 percent, almost $50 billion, off the company's market value since the April 20 rig explosion that triggered the oil spill and unleashed an environmental and economic calamity on the U.S. Gulf Coast.


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Monday, May 24, 2010

Citrix released an early version of a client virtualization system

KDE 4 Current version: 4.4 Older versions: 4.0...Image via Wikipedia
Citrix System Inc. is borrowing a page from Apple and pitching its new desktop virtualization product, in part, as one of the building blocks to a lifestyle change, at least for corporate employees.

Citrix Wednesday released an early version of a client virtualization system, XenClient, which will run virtual machines on a laptop without an installed operating system, or on bare metal.
A continuous network connection isn't needed and the software will sync up with the servers and backup files once connections are made. System administrators manage clients centrally.
The virtual machine contains the operating system and applications. A user can deploy multiple virtual machines on a client. In exchange, their employers gets to deploy virtual machine on the laptop that is dedicated for work and isolated from a personal system, also running in a virtual environment, on the same laptop.


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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Website solutions

eComTechnology is a decade old ecommerce company with a diverse range of products and services, including a very secure and reliable multi-currency platform for credit card processing, market leading fraud minimization systems and premium support services for the sustainable future.

eComTechnology is privately owned, managed and is a leading provider of Onshore & Offshore credit card processing services to businesses. We are able to work with not only traditional or retail businesses, but high risk and high volume businesses as well. The company's founder is a trusted, well established Professional specializing in Banking, Finance, International Business and Merchant Account Credit Card Services. We provide credit & debit card processing, and stored value card programs Onshore ( USA & CANADA ) as well as Offshore (Internationally).


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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Sixty percent of respondents to a Sophos poll say they are considering quitting Facebook

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
Sixty percent of respondents to a Sophos poll say they are considering quitting Facebook due to privacy fears. For businesses concerned about employee behavior and security, it is important to have a policy in place to govern behavior on social networks.

A poll by Sophos, discussed by Senior Technology Consultant Graham Cluley May 19, demonstrated that the level of public dissatisfaction with Facebook privacy policies may be reaching a boiling point.
Of roughly 1,600 people surveyed, 60 percent said it is either "highly likely" or "possible" that they will leave Facebook due to concerns over privacy. Just 24 percent said they either wouldn't leave or it is "not likely." The remaining 16 percent of the respondents had already left the site.
Sophos acknowledged that the poll isn't scientific, but if it is taken at face value, Facebook has its work cut out for it. In response to user complaints, the social networking site has already announced plans to simplify its privacy settings, possibly as early as the week of May 24.


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Friday, May 21, 2010

Website management at eComTechnology

Very soon now Google will require your site to function at certain speeds and maintain a level of activity or it will simply fall off their search engine listings, same as listings on the stock market. Putting your website on the Internet is the easy part. Who can manage it, Static web sites go stale and that causes traffic to drop off. Regular maintenance will keep a website active in search engines and accessed by potential customers, even without adding new content. Website Management is not only important, it is now more than ever critical with new website requirements for search engines to even stay listed in the search engines. Very soon now Google will require your site to function a certain speeds and maintain a level of activity or it will simply fall off their search engine listings.
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Thursday, May 20, 2010

The U.S. government on Thursday accused energy giant BP of falling short

The U.S. government on Thursday accused energy giant BP of falling short in the information it has provided about the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, in a clear sign of Washington's growing frustration with BP's handling of the spiraling environmental disaster.

"In responding to this oil spill, it is critical that all actions be conducted in a transparent manner, with all data and information related to the spill readily available to the United States government and the American people," Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson said in a letter.
The officials said in a letter to BP CEO Tony Hayward that despite claims by BP was making efforts to keep the public and the government informed, "those efforts, to date, have fallen short in both their scope and effectiveness."
The statement followed allegations earlier in the day that BP has engaged in a "cover-up" about the extent of the damage and the amount of crude flowing unchecked from its ruptured well in the Gulf of Mexico.
BP Plc said on Thursday it siphoning 5,000 barrels (210,000 gallons/795,000 litters) per day of oil, from 3,000 barrels a day previously.


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consumers prefer conducting business with smaller, local companies

Image representing WebVisible as depicted in C...Image via CrunchBase
A survey by online marketer WebVisible finds many consumers prefer conducting business with smaller, local companies due to lower prices, better quality of goods and the more personal nature of service.
The term “Main Street” has become code for all that is right in America – especially in an election year – but it is a nebulous term when used to describe the economics of smaller, local businesses that makes consumers spend their money there instead of a larger chain. A survey by local online marketing specialist WebVisibile found more than four out of five consumers – 83 percent – choose to patronize a small, local independent business over a larger chain, and their top three reasons for doing so speak to values that have long characterized small business.
Support for the community, convenient location and more personalized service were the top three reasons consumers shop with small to medium-size businesses (SMBs), the survey found: Just 17 percent of American consumers say they don’t choose to patronize a small business over a larger chain. The survey was conducted April 28-30 to help kick off National Small Business Week, which begins May 23. In conjunction with Chicago market researcher Synovate eNation, WebVisible asked 1,000 Americans what makes them choose to patronize a small, local, independent business over a larger chain. Respondents were asked to rank seven possible reasons in order of importance.


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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

High Risk Credit Card Processing at Ecomtechnology

High Risk Credit Card Processing


eComTechnology is a eCommerce company with a diverse range of products and services, including a very secure and reliable multi-currency platform for credit card processing, market leading fraud minimization systems and premium support services for the sustainable future.

Herbal Supplements, Nutraceuticals, Financial Consulting, Calling Cards, Phone Cards, VOIP, Telecommunications, High Volume, Telemarketing, Escort Merchants, Dating, eBook & Software, Event Tickets,Prepaid Debit Cards, Offshore.

Asia,United States, Canada or based in Europe inquire or apply onsite today at eComTechnology and in most cases you can be processing in less than 5 days through your own virtual terminal or gateway.

Merchant Accounts for Credit Card Processing


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The U.S. Minerals Management Service, which grants offshore drilling permits, set aside safety regulations

Minerals Management Service sealImage via Wikipedia
The U.S. Minerals Management Service, which grants offshore drilling permits, set aside safety regulations for oil exploration in parts of the Gulf of Mexico, environmental groups alleged in a lawsuit on Tuesday.

In a 2008 notice to oil companies with drilling leases off the coasts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama -- areas now threatened by the spill from the BP Deepwater Horizon rig -- the agency known as MMS waived requirements for documentation on what would be done in case of a blowout or a "worst-case scenario" spill, the lawsuit said.
The suit, filed on behalf of the Sierra Club and the Gulf Restoration Network by the environmental law firm Earthjustice, comes on the heels of more than 100 other lawsuits spawned by the spill. This federal suit seeks to reverse what it called an illegal waiver of safety regulations. The waiver was granted in 2008 and extends through 2013, according to a copy of the MMS notice to the oil firms obtained by Earthjustice.
As the latest in a series of environmental legal actions stemming from the BP spill, the suit names Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Assistant Interior Secretary Wilma Lewis and MMS Director Elizabeth Birnbaum as plaintiffs.


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Facebook May 18 launched 0.facebook.com

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
Facebook May 18 launched 0.facebook.com, which lets users update their status, view their News Feed, like or comment on posts, send and reply to messages, or write on their friends' Wall just as they do on Facebook.com or the company's m.facebook.com mobile Website. However, unlike the mobile Website, Facebook has worked with some 50 mobile operators to make sure 0.facebook.com won't rack up data charges. As such, photos are a click away.

Facebook May 18 launched 0.facebook.com, a new mobile version of the social network that is built for speed and supported by more than 50 mobile operators with no data charges for consumers.
"When using the mobile Internet, people around the world face two main challenges -- sometimes the experience is too slow to be fun and the cost of data plans and understanding them can be daunting," said Sid Murlidhar, a program manager for Facebook Mobile, in a blog post.

We have designed 0.facebook.com to help solve these two barriers and we hope that even more people will discover the mobile Internet with Facebook as a result.
0.facebook.com lets users update their status, view their News Feed, like or comment on posts, send and reply to messages, or write on their friends' Wall just as they do on Facebook.com or the company's m.facebook.com mobile Website.


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Monday, May 17, 2010

YouTube is five years old

Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...Image via CrunchBase
It's been five years since YouTube launched in beta, and the world's most popular video-streaming site is celebrating its birthday with a little bit of well-deserved gloating. At the Official YouTube Blog, the site notes that it has crossed the two-billion-views-per-day mark, a number that is "nearly double the prime-time audience of all three major U.S. television networks combined."

YouTube is also commemorating the milestone with the launch of its Five Year channel. The channel spotlights "people from all over describing how YouTube has changed or shaped their lives." Interested parties are encouraged to add their own stories to the mix.
The site also features the input of "luminaries," such as Conan O'Brien, Vint Cerf, and Katie Couric, showcasing their favorite videos from the past five years.


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Sunday, May 16, 2010

Atlantis final mission

The April 12 launch at Pad 39A of STS-1, just ...Image via Wikipedia
NASA's space shuttle Atlantis  heading out on the final mission of its 25-year career.

Atlantis and its six-man crew launched into orbit from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The shuttle, on a 12-day mission to bring supplies and spare parts to the International Space Station, entered orbit within nine minutes after liftoff.
NASA had predicted that the shuttle had a 70% chance of clear weather and the spacecraft launched into clear blue skies.
On its 32nd mission, Atlantis will ferry an 11,000-pound Russian-built mini research module to the station, along with new batteries for the facility's solar array, a spare communications dish antenna and scientific experiments.


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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Google voice

Google May 14 began rolling out its Google Voice phone management application to students, the search engine said. While the company is targeting college students with this new offer, a Google spokesperson told eWEEK any user with the .edu domain suffix may submit their e-mail address to procure an invite from the company. Google acquired Gizmo5 last year and is expected to take those assets and turn Google Voice into a Web calling service such as Skype. Google also expects to offer Google Voice to the enterprise through its Google Apps suite.
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Friday, May 14, 2010

Facebook tightens security as it deals with the continuing fallout over changes

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase
Facebook tightens security as it deals with the continuing fallout over changes to its privacy settings.

Amid a controversy about privacy, Facebook unveiled new security features designed to protect user accounts.
"Over the last few weeks, we've been testing a new feature that allows you to approve the devices you commonly use to log in and then to be notified whenever your account is accessed from a device you haven't approved," Lev Popov, a software engineer on Facebook's site integrity team, wrote Facebook's blog. To try out the feature, users can go to the Account Settings page and select the option to receive notifications for log-ins from new devices. "When you log in, you'll be asked to name and save the various devices you use to access Facebook.
"For example, you can save your home computer, your school or work computer, and your mobile phone. Once you've done this, whenever someone logs in to your account from a device not on this list, we'll ask the person to name the device," Popov wrote.


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Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Anti-Phishing Working Group attributed 66 percent of the phishing attacks

The Anti-Phishing Working Group attributed 66 percent of the phishing attacks in the last six months of 2009 to a single cyber-gang known as Avalanche. The crew is suspected to be a successor to the notorious Rock Phish gang of years past.

New research from the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) ties a single crime syndicate to more than 60 percent of the phishing attacks in the second half of 2009.
According to the report (PDF), a cyber-gang known as Avalanche was responsible for 66 percent of all phishing attacks during the last six months of 2009 and successfully targeted some 40 banks and online service providers. Also hit were vulnerable or non-responsive domain name registrars and registries. Besides phishing, the group also used its infrastructure to push the notorious Zeus Trojan.
"Avalanche's impact was unprecedented," said Greg Aaron, director of key account management and domain security at Afilias and co-author of the study, in a statement. "This one criminal group was responsible for two-thirds of the world's phishing, and also combined it with sophisticated crimeware distribution. The losses by banks and individual Internet users were staggering."


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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Canada’s newest cellphone company is about to show its hand

Bell InternetImage via Wikipedia
Canada’s newest cellphone company is about to show its hand after months of keeping its pricing and launch date a closely guarded secret.

Wireless startup Mobilicity will reveal plans this week to begin operating by early June, a source close to the company said, and a cornerstone of the company’s offensive will be an aggressively priced unlimited talk, text, long-distance and data package for $65.
Mobilicity’s strategy is to use its unlimited long-distance package to lure home-phone subscribers in big cities to ditch their landline with BCE Inc.’s Bell Canada, Telus Corp. and Rogers Communications Inc. Large providers do not usually price aggressively on wireless or offer unlimited packages, since their subscriber bases are so large that even slight adjustments can result in millions of lost revenue.


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Monday, May 10, 2010

Retina-X Studios has released Mobile Spy for the Apple iPad

Apple Inc - Photo from my iBookImage by Farid Iqbal via Flickr
Retina-X Studios has released Mobile Spy for the Apple iPad, and is pitching it as a way for businesses to keep an eye on employee use of the device. Parents can also use the software to monitor their child's activity, the company said.

A company has developed commercial spyware for the Apple iPad that allows employers to silently view e-mail, Web activity and other information of employees even after their histories are deleted.
Retina-X Studios announced availability of the technology, known as Mobile Spy for the Apple iPad, last week. The software runs on any jailbroken device, and is also available for Google Android, BlackBerry, Apple iPhone, Windows Mobile and Symbian OS devices.
The company is pitching the system as a way to help businesses enforce their acceptable use policy on company-owned devices, as well as a means for consumers to back up their own personal activity or monitor their children’s use of the device.


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Sunday, May 09, 2010

Borders Group Inc said on Friday that it is taking pre-orders for the Kobo eReader

Image representing nook as depicted in CrunchBaseImage via CrunchBase
Borders Group Inc said on Friday that it is taking pre-orders for the Kobo eReader, which will arrive in customers' homes starting on June 17, and plans to launch its eBook store in June.

Borders also said it plans to designate "Area-e" shops inside its stores to sell the Kobo eReader and other eReading devices starting in August.
The Kobo eReader, priced at $149.99, will join the space that has been dominated by Amazon.com Inc's Kindle. Borders' larger rival Barnes & Noble Inc is already selling its Nook e-reader and Apple Inc recently entered the fray with its more expensive iPad and has already sold more than 1 million of those devices.
he Kobo eReader, which will be preloaded with 100 classic books, will start arriving in customers' homes starting on June 17, Borders said.
The Borders eBook store will have more than 1 million titles, which shoppers will be able to buy through its web site as well as via free apps available for the iPhone, Blackberry, Android, iPad and computers.
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Saturday, May 08, 2010

Ice-like crystals have clogged with the containment dome

Title: Offshore Description: Offshore platform...Image via Wikipedia
Ice-like crystals have clogged with the containment dome that's supposed to collect most of the oil gushing from a damaged pipe in the Gulf of Mexico.


The company lowered the structure to the sea floor Friday evening and began to place it over the source of the environmentally devastating leak.

Since then, a "large volume of hydrates," material similar to ice crystals, has formed inside the box, Suttles said Saturday.

The hydrates — which are formed when gas combines with water under certain pressure and temperatures — have plugged an area at the top of the dome's interior.

"As we've stressed numerous times this particular operation has never been done at this depth, and we also shared that the big technical challenge was with hydrate formation," Suttles said.

"A large volume of hydrates formed inside the top of the dome, requiring us to move the dome to the side of the leak point. The dome is currently sitting on the seabed while we evaluate options to deal with the hydrate issue."

BP will spend the next two days to troubleshoot the problem, he added, and is still looking at other ways to control and ultimately stop the flow. BP is also continuing to drill a relief well to reduce the pressure from the blown-out well.
The cofferdam is designed to trap the oil gushing out of one of two leaks from the undersea well and suck it up — like a vacuum — to a tanker on the water's surface.

The structure, which looks something like a milk carton, is seven metres long, four metres wide and 12 metres tall, with a dome-like roof inside it.

Oil giant BP, which is in charge of the cleanup, hopes it will collect as much as 85 per cent of the almost 800,000 litres of crude that have been gushing out of the well daily for the last two weeks.

The leak is one of three that opened after the Deepwater Horizon oil rig leased by the multinational petroleum company exploded April 20, killing 11 people. The rig sank two days later 80 kilometres off the coast of Louisiana.


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Friday, May 07, 2010

Sarah Palin is backing Carly Fiorina

Former Alaska governor and one-time vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is backing Carly Fiorina, the ex-HP CEO, for the GOP U.S. Senate nomination. Palin praised Fiorina’s business resume and conservative views, and said she was the Republicans’ best bet for unseating Democratic incumbent Barbara Boxer.

Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina is getting the backing of Sarah Palin in her bid for a U.S. Senate seat in California.
In a statement released May 6, and further in comments on her Facebook page, Palin, the former Alaska governor and GOP vice presidential candidate, praised Fiorina’s business resume and her conservative political positions. Palin said that Fiorina gave the Republicans the best change to unseat incumbent Democrat Barbara Boxer.
“Please consider that Carly is the conservative who has the potential to beat California’s liberal senator, Barbara Boxer, in November,” Palin said in her release. “I’m a huge proponent of contested primaries, so I’m glad to see the contest in California’s GOP, but I support Carly as she fights through a tough primary against a liberal member of the GOP who seems to bear almost no difference to Boxer, one of the most leftwing members of the Senate.”
That “liberal member of the GOP” is Tom Campbell, a former Republican Congressman who at one time was running for governor—against former eBay CEO Meg Whitman—but switched to the Senate campaign in January.


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Ontario won't stop double-ending

Ontario moves to tighten rules around real estate agents 'double-ending,' but won't ban the practice If legislation is pa...