lunes, 16 de febrero de 2015


Political tensions in Argentina reached precarious heights on Friday when a prosecutor announced that he would continue investigating cover-up allegations against President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner in a case that his late colleague, Alberto Nisman, had been working on at the time of his mysterious death.The president, Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman and other officials have been named as suspects by the new prosecutor for allegedly trying to whitewash the involvement of a group of Iranians in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, in which 85 people died.
Nisman had filed the original case on January 14, just days before his body was found in his apartment with a fatal gunshot wound to the head. He was due to appear in Congress to explain his charges.
Without mentioning the decision taken by newly appointed prosecutor Gerardo Pollicita, Fernández de Kirchner on Sunday appeared defiant during a national televised address. Her government has repeatedly denied the allegations made by Nisman that the president was trying to reach a grain-for-oil pact with Iran in exchange for impunity against the Iranian officials wanted in the car-bombing attack. Prosecutor Pollicita has not yet called for the president, Timerman or the ruling party deputy Andrés Larroque, among others, to testify in court. Judge Daniel Rafecas, who cut his vacation short after he was assigned the case, may begin the inquiry on Wednesday, when he is scheduled to return to his courtroom. Rafecas may have had time to read the 290-page writ, which the government ordered unsealed following Nisman’s death and posted on the internet. Some officials, including the president, believe that the complaint is inconsistent and may have not been written by Nisman.
Various legal experts consulted by the Buenos Aires daily La Nación have said that it would have been an uphill battle for Nisman to try to prove his cover-up theory in court. Even journalists who have been critical of the government have stated publicly that the complaint is weak and is based mostly on newspaper articles.
But while the opposition is warning of a “serious institutional crisis” and is demanding that justice be served, Pollicita believes there are enough elements to push the case forward.
The Fernández de Kirchner government has tried to link Pollicita with opposition leader Mauricio Macri, the Buenos Aires governor and former president of Boca Juniors Soccer Club, given that the prosecutor held various administrative posts with the team. 
Some legal experts say that it would have been difficult for Nisman to prove his cover-up theory in court
Cabinet secretary Jorge Capitanich has warned that Pollicita’s complaint forms part of a judicial coup against the government.
Argentineans will go to the polls on October 25 to elect a new president. Fernández de Kirchner is barred under the Constitution from running for a third term and only has 10 months left in office. Nevertheless, she and her Cabinet officials have warned of “plots to destabilize” democracy, including staging a possible coup.
The Nisman case has polarized the entire nation. The mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of the 55-year-old prosecutor conjures up painful memories for many Argentineans, who for decades lived under the shadow of contract murders and secret police operations concocted from the Casa Rosada presidential palace.
Many Argentineans doubt that Nisman committed suicide.
A group of prosecutors, judges and other officials announced a silent marchset for Wednesday in Buenos Aires to demand justice for Nisman. The rally has been criticized by some sectors of society.
Two days after Pollicita decided to reactivate the case, the president wrote on her Facebook page: “You know what? We will leave them with their hate, insults, infamy and slander.”

Cristina Fernández Kirchner, President of Argentina

domingo, 15 de febrero de 2015


E.L. James’s sadomasochism-for-soccer-moms bestseller, Fifty Shades of Grey, makes its hugely anticipated big-screen bow this week. Whipped into shape by British artist-turned-filmmaker Sam Taylor-Johnson (Nowhere Boy), it stars relative unknowns Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan as, respectively, the naive literature student and the billionaire control freak who wants her for his sex slave. Expect lashings of lashings.
Based on an only-marginally-less-sensational bestseller (by S. J. Watson),Before I Go to Sleep stars Nicole Kidman as a woman who wakes up every morning in a bedroom she’s never seen, next to a man she doesn’t recognize. And every morning that man (played by Colin Firth) explains, with saint-like patience, that he is her husband and that she was in an accident that has left her unable to retain new memories – each night all her recollections are wiped as she sleeps. Such thankless dedication surely warrants our suspicion and, sure enough, up pops psychologist Mark Strong, who reveals he has been treating her behind her husband’s back and that she is keeping a video diary to keep track of recent events. The two stories don’t tally, so whom she should trust? While you assume most movie characters already know their back stories, here Kidman’s character is as in the dark as you, making you hyper-aware of the gaps in your knowledge. It’s something director Rowan Joffé (son of The Mission director Roland) skillfully exploits to sustain the suspense in this amnesiac thriller that, despite the accumulating plot holes and a bit of a flat wrap-up, is as efficient as it is enjoyable.

Skate secrets

Also out this week, Red Army is producer-director-writer Gabe Polsky’s acclaimed documentary about the all-conquering Soviet ice hockey team during the Cold War. Analyzing the links between sport and politics, the film focuses on the path of Viacheslav Fetisov, one of the first Russians to play in the NHL and a subsequent sports minister in the Putin government.
A slice of independent sci-fi from cinematographer-turned-director William Eubank, The Signal follows three MIT students led off path during a road trip when they’re contacted by a hacker who has already caused havoc by breaching their college’s computer system. But after tracking the culprit to a remote Nevada house, all suddenly goes black, with one of them waking up to find himself being scrupulously interrogated by scientist Laurence Fishburne in an underground government facility.

Cincuenta sombras de Grey
Dakota Jhonson and Jamie Dornan in "Fifty Shades Of Grey"

sábado, 14 de febrero de 2015


(CNN)- The idea is at the foundation of social media channels: Seen something strange? Post it online. The desire to share the unknown, or complex, is a human urge, and no-one knows this better than doctors.
"I'm a very visual learner. Most doctors are ... and we like to talk to each other," explains third-year medical resident Sheryll Shipes of Christus Spohn Hospital Corpus Christi-Memorial, in Texas.
Last year Shipes began using Figure1, a photo-sharing app through which healthcare professionals can share photographs and information about their patients for both learning and diagnosis purposes. "It's now my medical guilty pleasure," she adds.
It may ring alarm bells regarding patient confidentiality but founder Josh Landy, an intensive care specialist at Scarborough Hospital in Toronto, Canada, vows that anonymity, ethics and patient approval are at the core of the technology. He says his objective is the sharing of knowledge.
    "People (already) share cases through text and email," he says.
    As a medic himself Landy understands the need to seek external opinions when treating a variety of patients. One day, when looking around his hospital unit, Landy realized how commonplace this virtual sharing was among his students as their hands were occupied not with stethoscopes, but smartphones. They were in search of a second opinion -- and now they can get third, fourth and fifth opinions in a single click, with his photo-sharing app.
    "We looked at how people are using their smart phones," he explains, having seen many cases being shared between doctors using this medium. "I wanted a way to present all those cases ... to create a global knowledge notebook."

    Feedback from the community

    Launched in May 2013, Figure-1 enables users to take an image, remove any identifying information, and upload the image for feedback from the community of healthcare users accessing the app. Those not uploading use the app as a learning tool to expose them to conditions and symptoms they may not otherwise see. "It's medical education," says Landy.
    In developing the app, Landy ensured anonymity would become standard through the removal of any identifying features, names, numbers or case information when images are uploaded. All images undergo additional verification before becoming publicly available and patients must also give their permission for their photos to be shared.
    Whilst the general public may have interest in medical images, Landy stresses the importance of targeting mainly those working in healthcare. New users are asked for occupational information upon registering and only healthcare professionals can comment or add pictures.
    The app is now available in 19 countries and as of summer 2014 there were 150,000 users, according to Figure-1. The number is expected to be higher today with images in the library being viewed on average 1.5 million times a day. The greatest popularity lies in the continent of origin, with Figure-1 now being used by 30% of U.S. medical students, including Shipes.
    "It's classic medicine, digitized," says Shipes. Having used Figure-1 religiously over the past year, Shipes readily sings its praises after the app helped her diagnose a patient with an unusual skin disorder causing blisters on certain parts of her body. "I uploaded it to Figure-1 and someone told us exactly what it was," she says. The condition turned out to be common to Latin America and Asia but rare in the United States. "We would never have known that one."
    Now Landy hopes word will spread even further. "It's overdue for a tool like this," he concludes. "I'd like to see it everywhere."
    Figure-1 phone view bigger filesizefigure-1 app commentsfigure 1 app brain scan

    viernes, 13 de febrero de 2015

    St. Valentine, The Real Story.

    Flowers, candy, red hearts and romance. That's what Valentine's day is all about, right? Well, maybe not.
    The origin of this holiday for the expression of love really isn't romantic at all -- at least not in the traditional sense. Father Frank O'Gara of Whitefriars Street Church in Dublin, Ireland, tells the real story of the man behind the holiday -- St. Valentine.
    "He was a Roman Priest at a time when there was an emperor called Claudias who persecuted the church at that particular time," Father O'Gara explains. " He also had an edict that prohibited the marriage of young people. This was based on the hypothesis that unmarried soldiers fought better than married soldiers because married soldiers might be afraid of what might happen to them or their wives or families if they died."
    "I think we must bear in mind that it was a very permissive society in which Valentine lived," says Father O'Gara. "Polygamy would have been much more popular than just one woman and one man living together. And yet some of them seemed to be attracted to Christian faith. But obviously the church thought that marriage was very sacred between one man and one woman for their life and that it was to be encouraged. And so it immediately presented the problem to the Christian church of what to do about this."
    "The idea of encouraging them to marry within the Christian church was what Valentine was about. And he secretly married them because of the edict."
    Valentine was eventually caught, imprisoned and tortured for performing marriage ceremonies against command of Emperor Claudius the second. There are legends surrounding Valentine's actions while in prison.
    "One of the men who was to judge him in line with the Roman law at the time was a man called Asterius, whose daughter was blind. He was supposed to have prayed with and healed the young girl with such astonishing effect that Asterius himself became Christian as a result."
    In the year 269 AD, Valentine was sentenced to a three part execution of a beating, stoning, and finally decapitation all because of his stand for Christian marriage. The story goes that the last words he wrote were in a note to Asterius' daughter. He inspired today's romantic missives by signing it, "from your Valentine."
    "What Valentine means to me as a priest," explains Father O'Gara, "is that there comes a time where you have to lay your life upon the line for what you believe. And with the power of the Holy Spirit we can do that -- even to the point of death."
    Valentine's martyrdom has not gone unnoticed by the general public. In fact, Whitefriars Street Church is one of three churches that claim to house the remains of Valentine. Today, many people make the pilgrimage to the church to honor the courage and memory of this Christian saint.
    "Valentine has come to be known as the patron saint of lovers. Before you enter into a Christian marriage you want some sense of God in your life -- some great need of God in your life. And we know, particularly in the modern world, many people are meeting God through his Son, Jesus Christ."
    "If Valentine were here today, he would say to married couples that there comes a time where you're going to have to suffer. It's not going to be easy to maintain your commitment and your vows in marriage. Don't be surprised if the 'gushing' love that you have for someone changes to something less "gushing" but maybe much more mature. And the question is, is that young person ready for that?"
    "So on the day of the marriage they have to take that into context," Father O'Gara says. "Love -- human love and sexuality is wonderful, and blessed by God -- but also the shadow of the cross. That's what Valentine means to me."


    Igualada, Barcelona, after an explosion at a chemical plant sent an orange an emergency plan was lifted in the early hours of Friday morning in toxic cloud over the area.
    Fire crews removed the chemical spillage and transported it to a waste-treatment plant, according to a press release from the Civil Protection authorities in the area. Igualada also deactivated its municipal emergency plan, after 60,000 residents were told to stay in their homes on Thursday due to the cloud, which could have caused respiratory irritation.
    Speaking to Catalunya Ràdio, the Igualada mayor, Marc Castells, said that the incident “looked to have been caused by human error.” The council in the area has opened an investigation to determine the causes of the explosion, which left three people with light injuries.
    Five people had to be treated in the streets of Igualada by medical teams on Thursday – three firefighters and two members of the public. Six people were taken to hospital, and were kept under observation until 8pm before being discharged.
    A total of 21 ground crews and one helicopter crew from the regional fire service were deployed to tackle the incident, as well as 17 crews from the regional Mossos police force, six ambulance units and staff from the Red Cross.

    The chemical cloud over Igualada on Thursday.

    martes, 10 de febrero de 2015


    Police launched raids across Andalusia on Tuesday morning arresting dozens of people including politicians, public workers and businessmen in connection with a fraud scheme that involved phony training courses paid for by the regional government.
    Among those detained by the Economic and Fiscal Crimes Unit (UDEF) are the former Socialist mayor in Jerez de la Frontera, Pilar Sánchez, and a councilor from her same party in Roquetas de Mar.The arrests in this third phase of Operation Edu were carried out in Almería, Cádiz and Málaga provinces. UDEF sources said that 70 to 90 arrest warrants had been issued and will be executed in the coming days.
    Investigators are targeting schools that offered the courses, where as many as a thousand people may have benefited from the alleged scheme, which was in place between 2007 and 2013.
    The focus of the investigation is more than €3 billion that the Andalusian government allotted for vocation training programs over a seven-year-period, according to official sources. UDEF believes that between €20 million and €40 million may have been illegally handed out to people and businesses for classes that never were held.
    Investigators have taken statements from 300 people, most of whose names show up on lists at the Andalusian Employment Service (SAE). In all, around a thousand individuals and firms who benefited from the money handed out by the regional government are under investigation.
    “There are companies that are nothing but cover-ups, created for the express purpose to defraud the government,” said one top police official.
    UDEF agents believe that those who qualified received 75 percent of the grant money from the government, but didn’t collect the remaining 25 percent because they didn’t meet all of the conditions of the agreement.Operation Edu first broke last April when UDEF went public with a complaint filed by Social Security officials over subsidies handed out in 2010 by the Andalusia government for its Professional Occupational Training (FPO) program.
    A second phase broke right before the European Parliamentary elections in May, when allegations surfaced that tens of millions of euros had been embezzled through the phony-training programs. The Andalusian regional government, governed by the Socialist Party, decried the operation as being spearheaded by the Popular Party (PP) as a campaign ploy.
    This third phase and the arrests come just five weeks before March 22 regional elections in Andalusia.

    Training centers that are under investigation received government subsidies to be classes to unemployed people in Andalucía

    lunes, 9 de febrero de 2015


    Juan Carlos Monedero, the co-founder of Spain’s anti-austerity Podemos party and director of the organization’s electoral platform, voluntarily paid €200,000 in income taxes and fines on Thursday to satisfy a debt from €425,150 he earned as a consultant to the governments of Bolivia, Nicaragua, Venezuela and Ecuador, party officials announced last week.
    ources close to Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias explained that Monedero put his tax affairs in order with treasury officials through an agreement “that is more painful for him,” but that also demonstrates “there are no doubts about his willingness” to pay.
    Monedero is asking that the Spanish Tax Agency reimburse him the €70,000 company tax that his consulting firm paid on the same funds in 2013.
    Monedero’s earnings and the contracts he held with various leftist Latin American governments have been the center of controversy over the past few weeks after a story broke that the political science professor had made large sums of money as a consultant in Latin America but never paid income tax on the amounts to Spanish authorities.
    “Under the law, the existence of a voluntary complimentary return implies that no tax fraud existed,” said party officials in a statement, adding that Monedero won’t have to face any new tax penalties. While speaking at a rally last Thursday, Monedero told his supporters that he felt he was being persecuted by Finance Minister Cristóbal Monetero, who publicly questioned his income, and stated that his taxes had been paid.
    I am not scared of you, Montero. All my accounts are in order,” he said.
    In its statement, Podemos said that before Monedero paid the penalty there had been no complaints filed against him by anyone for fraud or administrative violations with a judicial body or the Tax Agency. The party led by Pablo Iglesias maintains that Monedero has complied with all his tax obligations.
    Reports published in other Spanish newspapers, El Mundo and La Vanguardia, state that the government has opened an investigation after Monedero filed a complete tax filing.
    At the end of 2012, Monedero organized a company, Caja de Resistencia Motiva 2 Produccions SL, to bill Latin American government for consulting services that he offered three years before the firm existed.
    Ignacio Ruiz Jarabo, who served as Tax Agency director during the past government of Prime Minister José María Aznar, said in an interview with the SER radio network that Monedero could face some “serious problems” with tax inspectors if they determine he billed governments three years after performing work for them.

    Juan Carlos Monedero, during a conference at a university business school last January. 

    domingo, 8 de febrero de 2015


    New euro coins bearing the image of Spain’s King Felipe VI went into circulation this week. The one-euro and two-euro pieces made their debut nearly eight months after Felipe succeeded his father, the former King Juan Carlos, on June 19 last year.
    The coins bear the 47-year-old king’s profile in a pose similar to that of his father, who has appeared on the Spanish version of the euro coin since the European monetary unit was introduced in 1999. 
    In a statement, the Economy Ministry said the old coins with Juan Carlos’s image would continue to be valid throughout the euro zone but will gradually be replaced.

    Around four million new coins were minted in January after being approved in October.
    Around four million new coins were minted in January after being approved by the ministry’s treasury and financial policy division in October. But part of the delay in putting the new coins into circulation was attributed to the Royal Mint, which had already issued its quota of newly minted currency when the handover of the crown took place last year.
    Felipe assumed the Spanish throne after Juan Carlos stepped down in June following a nearly 39-year reign.
    A special €30 collectors’ coin bearing Felipe's image was issued at the end of 2014.

    One-euro and two-euro coins with the image of King Felipe VI.


    Around 220 motorists had to be rescued from Spanish roads on Wednesday night as low temperatures and snow made driving conditions increasingly dangerous. Hundreds of cars were trapped on the A-67 and N-611 highways between Cantabria and Palencia, in northern Spain. Stranded occupants were rescued by members of the Emergency Military Unit (UME) and the Civil Guard, said a spokesman for the law enforcement agency. Dozens of military mountain vehicles and snowplows were deployed throughout the area, where both roads remained closed to traffic on Thursday morning between the municipalities of Arenas de Iguña (Palencia) and Santillana de Campos (Cantabria). Other national and secondary roads throughout the country experienced traffic cuts while plunging temperatures brought snowfall that left entire villages isolated. Thousands of children stayed home from school on Wednesday and on Thursday morning, 200 families from the Basque province of Bizkaia remained without electricity after power cuts left 5,000 homes in the dark. Some locations recorded temperatures of -15ºC and 40 centimeters of snowfall. Rail services between Asturias and León were suspended for the second day in a row on Thursday, and no alternative road route is available due to the adverse weather conditions, according to rail operator Renfe’s website. Meanwhile, police are investigating whether bad weather was involved in the death of a 49-year-old driver whose car plunged off a 35-meter-high bridge near Santa María de la Alameda, in the Madrid region, at 9.15am on Thursday. The AEMET national weather service is warning that the cold spell will “get worse” on Friday, with temperatures due to hit lows on Saturday and Sunday. Twenty provinces remain on alert for cold weather. Besides the low temperatures, mountain locations are on yellow alert for avalanches – a cross-country skier has already been killed by one in the Pyrenees – and parts of the Mediterranean coast are bracing for waves of up to eight meters. Strong winds of up to 90km/h are expected in northern Andalusia, Aragón and parts of Catalonia and the Valencia region. This is Spain’s first cold snap in three years.

    Heavy snowfall in Cantabria is making road
    travel difficult

    sábado, 7 de febrero de 2015


    Camilla Lisant, a girl of eight years of Manchester, UK, has suggested to her scientific parents a possible cure for one of the most serious diseases in the history of mankind: cancer.

    Lisant Camilla's parents, who have dedicated their lives to the study of cancer, have wondered, out of curiosity, to his eight years as cure the disease. The girl thought for a moment and replied with antibiotics, "As you heal sore throat".

    At first scientists did not pay much attention to the proposed Camilla, but after trying in the laboratory of the University of Manchester, were amazed. A cheap and widely available antibiotics had destroyed malignant cells.

    Research has revealed that four common antibiotics that cost less than $ 0.09 per day, kill stem cells in samples of breast, prostate, lung, ovary, pancreas, skin and brain.

    Although promising, the research so far is limited to laboratory results and must be approved in humans, especially in combination with other treatments.

    viernes, 6 de febrero de 2015


    My name is Nicolas, I´m 14 years old, I live in Lobres (Salobreña) in Spain, and I'm a student at "MEDITERRÁNEO" secondary school in Salobreña (Spain). This is my blog. Later I will talk about interesting news.

    SEE YOU SOON! ;)