Friday, July 31, 2009

The President Highlights Health Insurance Consumer Protections

Speaking to North Carolinians at a town hall in Raleigh, the President made clear why health reform will benefit all American: "if you’ve got health insurance, then the reform we’re proposing will also help you because it will provide you more stability and more security. Because the truth is we have a system today that works well for the insurance industry, but it doesn’t work well for you." We all know the horror stories, which is why the health insurance consumer protections that are part of reform are so important.
At the town hall, the President outlined these core principles:
Let me be specific. We will stop insurance companies from denying you coverage because of your medical history. (Applause.) I've told this story before -- I will never forget watching my own mother, as she fought cancer in her final days, worrying about whether her insurer would claim her illness was a preexisting condition so they could wiggle out of paying for her coverage. How many of you have worried about the same thing? (Applause.) A lot of people have gone through this. Many of you have been denied insurance or heard of someone who was denied insurance because they got -- had a preexisting condition. That will no longer be allowed with reform. (Applause.) We won't allow that. (Applause.) We won't allow that.
With reform, insurance companies will have to abide by a yearly cap on how much you can be charged for your out-of-pocket expenses. No one in America should go broke because of an illness. (Applause.)
We will require insurance companies to cover routine checkups and preventive care, like mammograms and colonoscopies -- (applause) -- eye and foot exams for diabetics, so we can avoid chronic illnesses that cost not only lives, but money. (Applause.)
No longer will insurance companies be allowed to drop or water down coverage for someone who's become seriously ill. That's not right, it's not fair. (Applause.) We will stop insurance companies from placing arbitrary caps on the coverage you can receive in a given year or in a lifetime. (Applause.)
So my point is, whether or not you have health insurance right now, the reforms we seek will bring stability and security that you don't have today -- reforms that will become more urgent and more urgent with each passing year.
So, in the end, the debate about reform boils down to a choice between two approaches. The first is projected to double your health care costs over the next decade, make millions more Americans uninsured, bankrupt state and federal governments, and allow insurance companies to run roughshod over consumers. That's one option. That's called the status quo. That's what we have right now.
I want everybody to understand this. If we do nothing, I can almost guarantee you your premiums will double over the next 10 years because that's what they did over the last 10 years. It will go up three times faster than your wages, so a bigger and bigger chunk of your paycheck will be going into health insurance. It will eat into the possibility of you getting a raise on your job because your employer is going to be looking and saying, I can't afford to give you a raise because my health care costs just went up 10, 20, 30 percent. And Medicare, which seniors rely on, is going to become more and more vulnerable. On current projections, Medicare will be in the red in less than 10 years.
So that's the status quo. When everybody goes around saying, why is Obama taking on health care -- that's the answer. That's one option. I don't like that option. You shouldn't either. (Applause.) That plan doesn't sound too good. That's the health care system we have right now.
You can read more about the President’s eight health insurance consumer protections here, and figure out how reform will directly affect you and your family.

Thursday, July 30, 2009


Location and accessibility

Kuakata is located at the southern most tip of the country facing the Bay of Bengal, in the sea-queen district of Patuakhali. It is situated about 71 km south of the Patuakhali District. It is accessible by road , water or air transport from Dhaka upto Barisal. Then one may travel by road or water to Kuakata. The beach is about 18 km long and 3 km width elongated east-westward from where sun-rise and sun-set is visible.

Existing facilities

Latachapli and Tangragiri reserved forests in the Kolapara Thana, Gangamoti reserve and Khajura reserve on the east and western part of the beach respectively are bestowed with natural mangrove species like keora, gewa, baen, kankra, goran, hental, goalpata and numbers of wild animals like wild boar, deer, monkey and different types of birds.

Shima Buddist Tample and Rakhaine culture at Kuakata are the added spots of tourism. This place is a real amusing land for local and foreign nature loving tourists.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Traveling With Disabilities

Individual countries have their own standards of accessibility for disabled travelers. Some countries have nondiscrimination laws that help to protect travelers with disabilities, while other countries do not. Preparation before you go can help ensure that your planned destination will be accessible, safe and enjoyable. Travelers with disabilities should review the Department of Transportation pamphlets New Horizons for the Air Traveler with a Disability and Plane Talk: Facts for Passengers With Disabilities . Both of these publications are available at the Department of Transportation’s website In addition, travelers with disabilities should review the information contained in the section above entitled Planning Your Trip: Learn About the Places You Will Visit, consider the following tips, and discuss the trip with a physician:

  • Research in advance: Learn about planned stops and ask questions about services available. Consider the level of health care available, as well as local transportation needs to and from the airport, luggage assistance, and whether other help will be needed to leave the airport terminal. When making reservations, inform the travel agent or carrier of your disability and the equipment you use, and, if necessary, request a wheelchair be brought to the gate upon arrival and any other assistance needed while flying and at the airport. In all cases, ask that your needs and requests be documented as part of the reservation, and take down the name of the agent. That way, if there is a problem, you may be able to quickly show that you are entitled to the service you requested.

  • Seek medical advice: Talk to your physician about the activities you have planned and your general physical condition, any immunizations that might be needed, and medications, whether prescription or over the counter, that you might need for your trip. Carry a letter from your attending physician, describing your medical condition and any prescription medications, including the generic names of prescribed drugs.

  • Your medications: If you take prescription medication, make sure you have enough to last the duration of the trip, including extra medicine in case you are delayed. Pack your medication in your carry-on bag, since checked baggage is occasionally lost. Always carry your prescriptions in their labeled containers, not in a pill pack.

  • Documentation of immunizations: Take with you proper documentation of immunizations.

  • Health and Evacuation Insurance: Make sure you have adequate health insurance coverage while abroad, including coverage of medical evacuation (not covered by most domestic policies). Note that U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs do not provide payment for medical services outside the United States.

  • Service dogs: Some countries have restrictions on service dogs. If you intend to travel with a service dog, be sure to check on possible restrictions with the embassy or consulate of each country you will visit. (This and other country information may be found on each country’s Country Specific Information at If service dogs are permitted, learn about quarantine or vaccination requirements. Find out what documents are needed, including international health certificates and rabies inoculation certificates, and if the documents need to be translated. Talk with your vet about tips for traveling with a dog, and how travel will affect the animal. You may also want to ensure that hotels will accommodate your service dog, and that there will be an adequate area for the dog to relieve itself.

  • Maintenance on equipment: Have a maintenance check done on any equipment you will take with you, to ensure that everything is in working order before you leave. You may want to research the availability of wheelchair and medical equipment providers in the areas you plan to visit.

  • Carry written plans: Carry with you your written itinerary and directions of where you wish to go. These can be shown to people who might be able to help you if you are lost. Another useful tool is a point-and-conversation guide.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

10 Tips to healthy eating and physical activity for you

  1. Start your day with breakfast.
    Breakfast fills your "empty tank" to get you going after a long night without food. And it can help you do better in school. Easy to prepare breakfasts include cold cereal with fruit and low-fat milk, whole-wheat toast with peanut butter, yogurt with fruit, whole-grain waffles or even last night's pizza!

  2. Get Moving!
    It's easy to fit physical activities into your daily routine. Walk, bike or jog to see friends. Take a 10-minute activity break every hour while you read, do homework or watch TV. Climb stairs instead of taking an escalator or elevator. Try to do these things for a total of 30 minutes every day.

  3. Snack smart.
    Snacks are a great way to refuel. Choose snacks from different food groups - a glass of low-fat milk and a few graham crackers, an apple or celery sticks with peanut butter and raisins, or some dry cereal. If you eat smart at other meals, cookies, chips and candy are OK for occasional snacking.

  4. Work up a sweat.
    Vigorous work-outs - when you're breathing hard and sweating - help your heart pump better, give you more energy and help you look and feel best. Start with a warm-up that stretches your muscles. Include 20 minutes of aerobic activity, such as running, jogging, or dancing. Follow-up with activities that help make you stronger such as push-ups or lifting weights. Then cool-down with more stretching and deep breathing.

  5. Balance your food choices - don't eat too much of any one thing.
    You don't have to give up foods like hamburgers, french fries and ice cream to eat healthy. You just have to be smart about how often and how much of them you eat. Your body needs nutrients like protein, carbohydrates, fat and many different vitamins and minerals such as vitamins C and A, iron and calcium from a variety of foods. Balancing food choices from the Food Guide Pyramid and checking out the Nutrition Facts Panel on food labels will help you get all these nutrients.

  6. Get fit with friends or family.
    Being active is much more fun with friends or family. Encourage others to join you and plan one special physical activity event, like a bike ride or hiking, with a group each week.

  7. Eat more grains, fruits and vegetables.
    These foods give you carbohydrates for energy, plus vitamins, minerals and fiber. Besides, they taste good! Try breads such as whole-wheat, bagels and pita. Spaghetti and oatmeal are also in the grain group.
    Bananas, strawberries and melons are some great tasting fruits. Try vegetables raw, on a sandwich or salad.

  8. Join in physical activities at school.
    Whether you take a physical education class or do other physical activities at school, such as intramural sports, structures activities are a sure way to feel good, look good and stay physically fit.

  9. Foods aren't good or bad.
    A healthy eating style is like a puzzle with many parts. Each part -- or food -- is different. Some foods may have more fat, sugar or salt while others may have more vitamins or fiber. There is a place for all these foods. What makes a diet good or bad is how foods fit together. Balancing your choices is important. Fit in a higher-fat food, like pepperoni pizza, at dinner by choosing lower-fat foods at other meals. And don't forget about moderation. If two pieces of pizza fill you up, you don't need a third.

  10. Make healthy eating and physical activities fun!
    Take advantage of physical activities you and your friends enjoy doing together and eat the foods you like. Be adventurous - try new sports, games and other activities as well as new foods. You'll grow stronger, play longer, and look and feel better! Set realistic goals - don't try changing too much at once.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Distribution and Systematics of White -Tailed - Eagle

This large eagle breeds in northern Europe and northern Asia. The largest population in Europe is found along the coast of Norway. The World population in 2008 stands at only 9,000 - 11,000 pairs. They are mostly resident, only the northernmost birds such as the eastern Scandinavian and Siberian population migrating south in winter.

Small disjunct resident populations occur in southwesternmost Greenland and western Iceland. The former has been proposed as a distinct subspecies groenlandicus based on their very large size and body proportions. However, the species is now considered monotypic and the size variation is clinal according to Bergmann's Rule. A recent genetic study of mitochondrial DNA is consistent with this idea. Greenlandic white-tailed eagles are, on evolutionary time scales, a relatively recently founded population that has not yet accumulated a lot of unique genetic characteristics. However, the population appears to be demographically isolated and deserves special protection.

The White-tailed Eagle forms a species pair with the Bald Eagle. These diverged from other sea eagles at the beginning of the early Miocene (c. 10 mya) at the latest, possibly (if the most ancient fossil record is correctly assigned to this genus) as early as the early or middle Oligocene, about 28 mya ago.

As in other sea-eagle species pairs, this one consists of a white-headed (the Bald Eagle) and a tan-headed species. They probably diverged in the North Pacific, spreading westwards into Eurasia and eastwards into North America. Like the third northern species, Steller's Sea Eagle, they have yellow talons, beaks, and eyes in adults.

Friday, July 17, 2009

IBM aspires for a Battery breach

Willing to place itself at the front of technology considered critical to transportation's future, Big Blue is throwing its mass behind batteries. On June 23, IBM announced a mass effort to increase the performance of rechargeable batteries by a factor of ten. The plan is to design batteries that will make it possible for electric vehicles to travel 200 to 300 kilometers on a single charge, up from 50 to 100 miles currently. "We would like to see if we can find a very different battery technology," says Chandrasekhar "Spike" Narayan, who supervises the Science & Technology Organization at IBM Research's Almaden lab in San Jose , Calif. To do that, IBM is leading a group that will create batteries using a combination of lithium and oxygen rather than the potentially flammable lithium-ion mix that now dominates advanced customer electronics and early electric-vehicle batteries. The new batteries could be used to store energy in electric grids as well.

IBM is also willing to reclaim U.S. leadership in battery tech from Asia . While a lot of of the original advance for the batteries that power today's laptop computers and cell phones happened in the U.S. , those batteries now come mainly from Japan and Korea . Industry leaders have called for just this kind of concentrated effort along with concern that the U.S. will miss out on one of the most key technology shifts in history, the switch from gasoline to electricity as the primary power source for light vehicles. The struggle is that the U.S. will trade its current dependence on the Middle East for oil with a new dependence on Asia for vehicle batteries. Battery technology would describe the future, and if we don't act quickly it will go to China and Japan .

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Europe on the edge

Don't know. What I do know is that Europe is not yet an economy. The Common Market still has uncommunal flaws. This programme sets out to discover why they are feeling the heat (or the chill of depression) on the fringes of Europe the Baltic states, in Central Europe , in Greece and Spain and Ireland . After they entered the EU, these countries boomed and bloomed, flush with European catch-up money and inward investment, But not now. They are in deep trouble, whether or not they are inside or outside the Eurozone. And that gets me back to the interesting question of what this thing called Europe actually is.The clever young British think tanker Mark Leonard moved on to the idea of Europe after he'd put forward the idea of Cool Britannia in the early days of Tony Blair's Britain . Mark Leonard (who grew up in Brussels ) wrote a book "Why Europe will run the 21 century", with the counter-intuitive proposition that it does not really matter what Europe is..what matters is what people think it is.

He says that this is the only supra natural bloc he can think of which has had outside nations queuing up to join. Most such country groupings have been formed by war or conquest. Not Europe . In other words, Europe is an idea rather than a political association. If strong national governments can translate European policy into national legislation, then the vagueness of the European parliament does not matter too much. Think of Europe (says Mark Leonard) as a sort of series of transparent overlays. Some countries may join up for economic reason; some to stop a European war ever breaking out again. Some may want the embrace of a single currency among them and their neighbours, but others find their own currencies impossible to renounce. Some want to join NATO, some do not.

Sounds chaotic, but the chaos doesn't really matter. Europe is not what politicians think it is, a continent looking for a national anthem. It's a club of members who can subscribe to the membership plan they want : no to a Europe defence policy, yes to the euro, yes to a common passport.Judged by conventional expectations of how countries ought to behave, this is disconcerting. Mark Leonard sort of says that the uncomfortableness of the European idea is one of its hidden strengths, Other countries want to be in for all kinds of reasons, rather than for one great big reason. Europe is what you want it to be.Nevertheless, the idea of Europe is under some severe strains at the moment. Particularly in question is the idea that one interest rate decided by the Central Bank of Euroland in Frankfurt is suitable for the non-existent Europe-as-a-whole economy. "One interest rates does not only not fit all," says the economist Maya Bhandari at Lombard Street Research in the City of London, "One interest rate does not fit anyone."

The European Central Bank kept interest rates high by German standards over the past ten years because its members were deeply worried about incipient inflation. But what were high interest rates for the Germans were pretty low for many other countries with more buoyant economies: so joining the Euro unleashed an orgy of low interest rate borrowing and lending in places such as Ireland , fuelling the enormous Irish property boom. Same in Spain ..and in Hungary, where homebuyers seeking low interest rates rushed into Euro denominated loans because the forint carried such high interest rates by comparison. To say nothing of Ic eland, where foreign money rushed in to take advantage of relatively sky-high Icelandic interest rates, and the banks embarked on an absolute orgy of lending and investment abroad on their own account. The rest is history, and unpleasant. Except that experts in the Euro land countries still exist that on balance the agony of currently being in the Europe does not overwhelm the long term advantage of stability. Except that some thinking people in Iceland are now clamouring to get Iceland into the EU and the Euro, despite the threat to Iceland 's individualistic fishing policy.

source : bbc news

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Goldman Sachs sees bumper profit


Less volatility in stock markets, rises in global share prices and involvement in many firms' rights issues and takeovers had boosted profits, it said. The bank said it had set aside $6.65bn for pay and bonuses in the quarter - an average of $226,000 per employee. Goldman has recently paid off $10bn of government loans it had taken as part of a government bail-out programme. Its results include a one-off charge of $426m related to the repayment of its government loan under the Troubled Asset Relief Programme (Tarp).

Record revenues

Some have raised questions over whether it is right that a bank make such profits and pay hefty bonuses so soon after receiving government loans. But analyst William Smith, of Smith Asset Management said: "Goldman should be celebrated, not demonised." "Things are very fragile but they manage to make money in all environments, which is what you're supposed to do," he added. Goldman's chief financial officer David Viniar said: "We are helping the economy to recover". Goldman reported record net revenues of $13.8bn - about 47% higher than it generated in the preceding three months.

Meanwhile, staff remuneration figures takes the bank's average payout per employee for the first half of the year to $384,000. However, bonuses are not actually finalised until the end of the year - and the figure which is paid out reflects performance over 12 months, it said. Analysts had already predicted that the annual payout in 2009 for its staff could be nearly $18bn - or an average of more than $600,000 per person.

Share rises

Six months ago, Goldman reported its first quarterly loss since going public in 1999, after being battered by the economic crisis. But it then surprised Wall Street by reporting a $1.8bn profit for the first three months of the year, despite the financial crisis. And the bank said it had benefitted from higher volumes of trading in shares, while seeing record revenues from currency and commodities trading during the second quarter. It also gained from several firms raising funds from shareholders through rights issues. Revenues from underwriting - where the bank agrees to buy any shares not taken up by investors in return for a fee - rose 21%. And its lack of exposure to the weak consumer retail markets, had also helped.

"While markets remain fragile and we recognise the challenges the broader economy faces, our second quarter results reflected the combination of improving financial market conditions and a deep and diverse client franchise," said chief executive Lloyd Blankfein. Its share price, while still well off its highs, has gained about 75% in 2009. Goldman paid $771m in dividends to holders of its preferential shares. The $3.44bn net profit compares with $2.1bn in the three months to May 2008, when it had a different reporting schedule.

source bbc news