February 7th, 2006

Chris Keeley

Long-Beaked Echidnas, a primitive egg-laying mammal that is little known

Lost world discovered in Papua

An international team of scientists have discovered what they are calling a "lost World" in the Papua province of eastern Indonesia. The researchers, led by Conservation International, found twenty new frog species, four new butterfly species, and many other marvelous animals and plants living in an isolated jungle. It's absolutely thrilling that there are still pockets of this planet teeming with unknown life.
Birdofparadise
From the Conservation International press release:
“It’s as close to the Garden of Eden as you’re going to find on Earth,” marveled Bruce Beehler, vice president of CI’s Melanesia Center for Biodiversity Conservation and a co-leader of the expedition. “The first bird we saw at our camp was a new species. Large mammals that have been hunted to near extinction elsewhere were here in abundance. We were able to simply pick up two Long-Beaked Echidnas, a primitive egg-laying mammal that is little known.”

The discoveries solved one major ornithological mystery – the location of the homeland of Berlepsch’s Six-Wired Bird of Paradise (seen here). First described in the late 19th century through specimens collected by indigenous hunters from an unknown location on New Guinea, the species had been the focus of several subsequent expeditions that failed to find it.

On the second day of the recent month-long expedition, amazed scientists watched as a male Berlepsch’s bird of paradise performed a mating dance for an attending female in the field camp. This was the first time a live male of the species had been observed by Western scientists, and proved that the Foja Mountains was the species’ true home.
Link to Conservation International press release, Link to New York Times article (Thanks, John Parres!)
Chris Keeley

Sales of hepatitis C treatments in the United States are now about $1 billion, Mr. Boger said. But i

February 7, 2006
Market Place

Hoping a Small Sample May Signal a Cure

Joshua Boger might have finally found his billion-dollar molecule.

Mr. Boger, the brash founder and chief executive of Vertex Pharmaceuticals, was profiled, along with his company, in a 1994 book "The Billion-Dollar Molecule: One Company's Quest for the Perfect Drug." But the drug discussed in the book never made it to market, and after more than 16 years in business and losses totaling about $1 billion, Vertex has still not hit it big.

Now, though, the company's hopes, and its stock price, are soaring because of a drug to treat hepatitis C, a liver-destroying virus that infects about three million Americans, kills 10,000 of them a year and is the leading reason for liver transplants in this country.

 

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Chris Keeley

Mr. Durst testified that he panicked, carving up Mr. Black's body until he was "swimming in blood."

February 7, 2006

Durst Cuts Ties to Family in Return for $65 Million

WHITE PLAINS, Feb. 6 — Robert A. Durst, the real estate scion acquitted of murder in Texas despite admitting that he carved up his 71-year-old neighbor, cut the last ties to his family and 10 Manhattan skyscrapers on Monday in return for a payout of about $65 million.

Mr. Durst, long estranged from his family, agreed in Westchester County Surrogate's Court to settle a lawsuit he had brought against the Durst family trusts and the trustees: his younger brother Douglas; a cousin, Jonathan; and a lawyer, Richard Siegler. The value of the settlement was described in court as "blank," but people on both sides of the dispute said Mr. Durst would get more than $60 million.

 

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Chris Keeley

A Trillion Little Pieces

February 7, 2006
Editorial

A Trillion Little Pieces

President Bush's $2.77 trillion budget is fiction masquerading as fact, a governmental version of the made-up memoirs that have been denounced up and down the continent lately. The spending proposal is built around the pretense that the same House and Senate that are set to consider a record deficit of $423 billion will now impose a virtual freeze on everything other than Pentagon and homeland security outlays. The budget writers even fantasized an end to Social Security's lump-sum death benefit — a whopping $255 per recipient — as if Congress would dare to do something so heartless and easy to exploit in an election year.

 

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Chris Keeley

Mr. Williams was one of the first black leaders to use the cold war to embarrass the United States i

Outspoken and Feared but Largely Forgotten </nyt_headline>
 
they broadcast a music and commentary show from Havana, "Radio Free Dixie," which was heard as far away as New York and Los Angeles and throughout the South. The topics included race riots and Vietnam, accompanied by jazz and the songs of Nina Simone and others in the protest tradition.
Chris Keeley

s destined to be remixed as a dance tune. The beat is heavy, and Zinner switches between robust meta

POSITIVE ATTITUDE
by SASHA FRERE-JONES
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ new album.
Issue of 2006-02-13 and 20
Posted 2006-02-06

In July of 2004, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, a rock trio from New York City, opened for Devo, the new-wave group, in a show at the band shell in Central Park. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ 2003 début album, “Fever to Tell,” had gone gold, a considerable achievement for a noisy and idiosyncratic band that lacks a bass player and has a sound that is sometimes thin and spiky. The group had sold half a million records, in part because the video for “Maps,” a stirring love song that is as close as the band gets to a ballad, had become a staple on MTV2.

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