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Saturday, Aug 29th

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Government unveils new system for auto safety ratings

Government unveils new system for auto safety ratingsFederal safety officials unveiled a more comprehensive crash rating system for vehicles that for the first time evaluates how women fare in accidents by using female crash dummies and takes into account side pole crashes and crash-prevention technology such as electronic stability control.

The Transportation Department and its National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it would now issue an "overall vehicle score" that combines the results of a frontal crash test, side crash tests and rollover resistance tests. It compares the results with the average risk of injury and potential for vehicle rollover of other vehicles.

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U.S. counter-terrorism agents still hamstrung by data-sharing failures

US Counter Terrorism CenterCounter-terrorism analysts still lack the data-search tools that might have kept a bomb-wearing Al Qaeda operative from boarding a Detroit-bound airliner nine months ago, and probably won't have them any time soon, U.S. officials acknowledge.

At the same time, officials say the terrorist threat against the U.S. is becoming more complex, with a greater risk from home-grown militants whose low profiles makes sophisticated intelligence analysis more important than ever.

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Schwarzenegger signs bill reducing offense for marijuana possession

marijuanaGov. Arnold Schwarzenegger opposes Proposition 19, which would legalize the recreational use of marijuana, but he offered a consolation Thursday by signing a bill that would downgrade possession of an ounce or less from a misdemeanor to an infraction.

SB 1449 was written by state Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), who said it will keep marijuana-related cases from going to court-clogging jury trials, although the penalty would remain a fine of up to $100 but no jail time.

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Anger as a Private Company Takes Over Libraries

Private Company Takes Over LibrariesA private company in Maryland has taken over public libraries in ailing cities in California, Oregon, Tennessee and Texas, growing into the country’s fifth-largest library system. Now the company, Library Systems & Services, has been hired for the first time to run a system in a relatively healthy city, setting off an intense and often acrimonious debate about the role of outsourcing in a ravaged economy.

A $4 million deal to run the three libraries here is a chance for the company to demonstrate that a dose of private management can be good for communities, whatever their financial situation.

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'Pulpit Freedom Sunday' to Defy IRS

http://abcnews.go.com/US/definat-pastors-irs/story?id=11726610Nearly 100 pastors across the country planned to take part in Pulpit Freedom Sunday, an in-your-face challenge Sunday to what the government says can and cannot be said in church.

The pastors, along with the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based nonprofit Alliance Defense Fund, are reacting to a law stating that churches are not allowed to support politicians from the pulpit, according to the ADF.

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FBI raids war protesters' homes

The FBI raided the homes of five political activists and an office Friday in Minneapolis as part of an investigation into possible links between local anti-war activists and terrorist groups in Colombia and the Middle East.

An FBI spokesman said agents were "seeking evidence related to an ongoing Joint Terrorism Task Force investigation into activities concerning the material support of terrorism."

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Florida ban on gay adoption is illegal: court

 More Reuters Results for: "gay adoption florida"      * Florida ban on gay adoption is illegal: court       2:36pm EDT      * Gay couples as fit to adopt as heterosexuals: study       Fri, Sep 25 2009      * Obama must work for compromise in US culture war       Mon, Jan 19 2009      * ANALYSIS-Obama must work for compromise in US culture war       Sat, Jan 17 2009   Read     1. U.S. Nuclear Weapons Have Been Compromised by Unidentified Aerial Objects       PR Newswire 15 Sep 2010       1    2. Paris Hilton leaves Japan after questioning | Video       11:27am EDT       2    3. Wall Street drops as Adobe and Microsoft weigh       2:19pm EDT       3    4. "Baywatch" star Hasselhoff first "Dancing" victim       9:14am EDT       4    5. Study finds iPhone owners want to switch to Verizon       8:04am EDT       5  Shared     1. Wind could have parted Red Sea for Moses: report       21 Sep 2010       1    2. Titanic sunk by steering mistake, author says       11:50am EDT       2    3. Obesity rates remain 'disturbingly high'       21 Sep 2010       3    4. Pictures of the month: August       31 Aug 2010       4    5. Mayor, officials arrested in California pay scandal       2:12pm EDT       5  Watched      *       Soros: Gold       Soros: Gold "not safe" Wed, Sep 15 2010     *       Hilton detained; Gaga rallies       Hilton detained; Gaga rallies Tue, Sep 21 2010     *       White House's Summers to step down       White House's Summers to step down Tue, Sep 21 2010  NYSE and AMEX quotes delayed by at least 20 minutes. NASDAQ delayed by at least 15 minutes. For a complete list of exchanges and delays, please click here. Broker Center Special Advertising Feature Trade Free for 30 Days Click Here  Florida ban on gay adoption is illegal: courtThere is no rational reason to prohibit all homosexuals from adopting children, a Florida appeals court said on Wednesday in a ruling that upheld a gay man's adoption of two young boys. Florida is the only remaining U.S. state to expressly ban adoption by gay men and women without exception, the ruling noted.

A lower court found in 2008 that the ban violated the state constitution's guarantee of equal treatment. It allowed the plaintiff, a gay man named Frank Martin Gill, to adopt two boys -- half-brothers he had been raising as foster children since 2004.

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