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Exploding boobs and other exciting news stories [l]

Jordan's boobs 'may explode' in jungle
Medics have warned that Jordan's breasts could explode if leeches get to suck them in the jungle.

The model is planning to strip off on I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here.

But doctors claim that would be one of the most perilous things she could do.

They say if leeches attach themselves to her 34FF bosoms, they will become inflamed and grow even larger, reports the Daily Star.

A doctor told the paper: "She would need to be treated quickly if she was bitten on her chest. I dread to think what would happen if her breasts started swelling. There is a danger they might explode."

Jordan and the other nine contestants have flown out from Heathrow en route for the camp in Australia's Gold Coast rainforest.

She has said she can hardly wait to get into the jungle with ex-pop star Peter Andre, claiming: "I used to fancy him when I was younger."

But Andre, who has been living in Cyprus for several years, said he had never heard of her until a few days ago.

Meanwhile, the model has reportedly used her fee for the programme to buy a £120,000 Bentley convertible. The Sun claims she put her reported £100,000 towards the car.

From Ananova:
http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_858213.html?menu=news.quirkies


Infiltration of files seen as extensive
Senate panel's GOP staff pried on Democrats

By Charlie Savage, Globe Staff, 1/22/2004

WASHINGTON -- Republican staff members of the US Senate Judiciary Commitee infiltrated opposition computer files for a year, monitoring secret strategy memos and periodically passing on copies to the media, Senate officials told The Globe.

From the spring of 2002 until at least April 2003, members of the GOP committee staff exploited a computer glitch that allowed them to access restricted Democratic communications without a password. Trolling through hundreds of memos, they were able to read talking points and accounts of private meetings discussing which judicial nominees Democrats would fight -- and with what tactics.

The office of Senate Sergeant-at-Arms William Pickle has already launched an investigation into how excerpts from 15 Democratic memos showed up in the pages of the conservative-leaning newspapers and were posted to a website last November.

With the help of forensic computer experts from General Dynamics and the US Secret Service, his office has interviewed about 120 people to date and seized more than half a dozen computers -- including four Judiciary servers, one server from the office of Senate majority leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, and several desktop hard drives.

But the scope of both the intrusions and the likely disclosures is now known to have been far more extensive than the November incident, staffers and others familiar with the investigation say.

The revelation comes as the battle of judicial nominees is reaching a new level of intensity. Last week, President Bush used his recess power to appoint Judge Charles Pickering to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, bypassing a Democratic filibuster that blocked a vote on his nomination for a year because of concerns over his civil rights record.

Democrats now claim their private memos formed the basis for a February 2003 column by conservative pundit Robert Novak that revealed plans pushed by Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, to filibuster certain judicial nominees. Novak is also at the center of an investigation into who leaked the identity of a CIA agent whose husband contradicted a Bush administration claim about Iraqi nuclear programs.

Citing "internal Senate sources," Novak's column described closed-door Democratic meetings about how to handle nominees.

Its details and direct quotes from Democrats -- characterizing former nominee Miguel Estrada as a "stealth right-wing zealot" and describing the GOP agenda as an "assembly line" for right-wing nominees -- are contained in talking points and meeting accounts from the Democratic files now known to have been compromised.

Novak declined to confirm or deny whether his column was based on these files.

"They're welcome to think anything they want," he said. "As has been demonstrated, I don't reveal my sources."

As the extent to which Democratic communications were monitored came into sharper focus, Republicans yesterday offered a new defense. They said that in the summer of 2002, their computer technician informed his Democratic counterpart of the glitch, but Democrats did nothing to fix the problem.

Other staffers, however, denied that the Democrats were told anything about it before November 2003.

The emerging scope of the GOP surveillance of confidential Democratic files represents a major escalation in partisan warfare over judicial appointments. The bitter fight traces back to 1987, when Democrats torpedoed Robert Bork's nomination to the Supreme Court. In the 1990s, Republicans blocked many of President Clinton's nominees. Since President Bush took office, those roles have been reversed.

Against that backdrop, both sides have something to gain and lose from the investigation into the computer files. For Democrats, the scandal highlights GOP dirty tricks that could result in ethics complaints to the Senate and the Washington Bar -- or even criminal charges under computer intrusion laws.

"They had an obligation to tell each of the people whose files they were intruding upon -- assuming it was an accident -- that that was going on so those people could protect themselves," said one Senate staffer. "To keep on getting these files is just beyond the pale."

But for Republicans, the scandal also keeps attention on the memo contents, which demonstrate the influence of liberal interest groups in choosing which nominees Democratic senators would filibuster. Other revelations from the memos include Democrats' race-based characterization of Estrada as "especially dangerous, because . . . he is Latino," which they feared would make him difficult to block from a later promotion to the Supreme Court.

And, at the request of the NAACP, the Democrats delayed any hearings for the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals until after it heard a landmark affirmative action case -- though a memo noted that staffers "are a little concerned about the propriety of scheduling hearings based on the resolution of a particular case."

After the contents of those memos were made public in The Wall Street Journal editorial pages and The Washington Times, Judiciary Chairman Orrin Hatch, Republican of Utah, made a preliminary inquiry and described himself as "mortified that this improper, unethical and simply unacceptable breach of confidential files may have occurred on my watch."

Hatch also confirmed that "at least one current member of the Judiciary Committee staff had improperly accessed at least some of the documents referenced in media reports." He did not name the staffer, who he said was being placed on leave and who sources said has since resigned, although he had apparently already announced plans to return to school later this year.

Officials familiar with the investigation identified that person as a legislative staff assistant whose name was removed from a list of Judiciary Committee staff in the most recent update of a Capitol Hill directory. The staff member's home number has been disconnected and he could not be reached for comment.

Hatch also said that a "former member of the Judiciary staff may have been involved." Many news reports have subsequently identified that person as Manuel Miranda, who formerly worked in the Judiciary Committee office and now is the chief judicial nominee adviser in the Senate majority leader's office. His computer hard drive name was stamped on an e-mail from the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League that was posted along with the Democratic Senate staff communications.

Reached at home, Miranda said he is on paternity leave; Frist's office said he is on leave "pending the results of the investigation" -- he denied that any of the handwritten comments on the memos were by his hand and said he did not distribute the memos to the media. He also argued that the only wrongdoing was on the part of the Democrats -- both for the content of their memos, and for their negligence in placing them where they could be seen.

"There appears to have been no hacking, no stealing, and no violation of any Senate rule," Miranda said. "Stealing assumes a property right and there is no property right to a government document. . . . These documents are not covered under the Senate disclosure rule because they are not official business and, to the extent they were disclosed, they were disclosed inadvertently by negligent [Democratic] staff."

Whether the memos are ultimately deemed to be official business will be a central issue in any criminal case that could result. Unauthorized access of such material could be punishable by up to a year in prison -- or, at the least, sanction under a Senate non-disclosure rule.

The computer glitch dates to 2001, when Democrats took control of the Senate after the defection from the GOP of Senator Jim Jeffords, Independent of Vermont.

A technician hired by the new judiciary chairman, Patrick Leahy, Democrat of Vermont, apparently made a mistake that allowed anyone to access newly created accounts on a Judiciary Committee server shared by both parties -- even though the accounts were supposed to restrict access only to those with the right password.

From Boston.com:
http://www.boston.com/news/nation/articles/2004/01/22/infiltration_of_files_seen_as_extensive/


The Electric Version

Now, Mayor Bloomberg is trying to face the city's fears about the issue... but didn't have much of an answer about what could be done to prevent electrocutions, saying "I'm not an engineer, we'll have to see what we can do." However, Dahl astutely pointed out that Bloomberg actually did graduate from Johns Hopkins with a degree in engineering; further examination shows it was a degree in electrical engineering. Mayor Bloomberg, we're watching you.

Excerpted from Gothamist:
http://www.gothamist.com/archives/2004/01/22/the_electric_version.php

Winglike Design Unveiled for WTC Transit Hub
By DAVID DUNLAP
Published: January 22, 2004

Two counterpoised glass wings — bent as if to offer shelter, soaring as if to offer hope, as long as a city block and capable of movement on their own — will crown the permanent World Trade Center PATH terminal designed by Santiago Calatrava.

The design of the terminal, which will sit astride a network of passageways linking commuter trains, ferry boats, 14 subway lines and perhaps even an AirTrain station, was unveiled this morning by Gov. George E. Pataki, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which will build the $2 billion project.

"Today we unveil the design of downtown's new PATH station and we imagine that future generations will look at this building as a true record of our lives today as we rebuild our city," Mr. Bloomberg said. "What will they see in Santiago Calatrava's thrilling work? They'll see creativity in design, and strength in construction. They'll see confidence in our investment in a stunning gateway to what will always be the financial capital of the world. They'll see a seamless connection to the PATH train, city subways, and ultimately, to our regional airports. And they'll see optimism a building appearing to take flight — just like the neighborhood it serves."

Although the PATH terminal is the third major element of the trade center redevelopment project — in many ways, quite literally its heart — the design almost burst on the civic consciousness, since work has proceeded quietly, with none of the discordant prelude that accompanied Freedom Tower and the memorial, "Reflecting Absence."

"This is the Port Authority's gift to New York City," Mr. Calatrava, who is widely regarded as the world's leading designer of lyrical transportation structures, said today. "It will be a lamp of hope in the middle of Lower Manhattan, creating an unbroken line of natural light from the platforms to the sky."

His partners in the PATH project are the STV Group and DMJM & Harris.

The Port Authority embraced the idea of creating a generous space. Indeed, the project may be criticized for extravagance, since there is a functioning $323 million temporary PATH station.

In the permanent station, which might begin serving passengers in 2006 and be completed by 2009, the most striking element above ground would be curving, winglike canopies. They would run the length of the oblong glass-and-steel shell that is to serve as an enormous skylight over the terminal concourse. They would also extend over the plazas created to the northeast and southwest of the terminal building.

At the apogee of their arcs, the wings would rise more than 100 feet into the air. Given the size of the block — bounded by Church Street and the re-established Fulton, Greenwich and Dey Streets — they would apparently be more than 350 feet long.

Even more striking, the wings could pivot aside to create an opening to the sky along the main axis of the terminal. This would allow the concourse to be ventilated naturally; a pleasant amenity on a spring day, a necessity in case of fire.

This slow-motion but kinetic architectural gesture unmistakably bears the Calatrava signature. A canopy at his Valencia Science Center in Spain, for example, opens and closes like an eyelid. The roof of the Kuwait Pavilion for the 1992 World's Fair in Seville was composed of fingerlike segments that could be opened to expose it to the sky.

The bold, sweeping curves of the PATH terminal canopies bring to mind several of Mr. Calatrava's recent projects, like the Milwaukee Art Museum expansion and the opera house at Santa Cruz de Tenerife in the Canary Islands. But they might also remind some viewers of Jorn Utzon's Sydney Opera House or Eero Saarinen's T.W.A. Flight Center at Kennedy International Airport or the glass wall planned by David M. Childs of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill as part of the proposed expansion of Pennsylvania Station.

Mr. Calatrava has made it plain since last fall that he views the terminal as far more than a commuter rail station. "It is like the heart to the body," he said in an interview on Wednesday, "pulsing people in and out."

And some hint of the airy design unveiled today could be gleaned from Mr. Calatrava's statement that "we are building with light."

Certainly, there is a premium to be paid for architecture of this quality, which the Port Authority acknowledged without ascribing a specific cost.

"I just don't think you can say because we've hired Calatrava, it's going to cost 15 to 20 percent more," Joseph J. Seymour, executive director of the Port Authority, said on Wednesday. "We want to create for downtown a grand point of entry, a place that's not only a transportation hub but also a great piece of architecture, because that also defines an area.

"Great cities really demand great public spaces," Mr. Seymour said.

The above-ground PATH terminal structure would occupy part of the area set aside for the Wedge of Light plaza in the master plan for the site by Studio Daniel Libeskind. The lines of the wedge, Mr. Libeskind has explained, are defined by the angle of the sun at 8:46 a.m. and 10:28 a.m. on Sept. 11: the beginning of the 2001 attack and the collapse of the second tower.

These angles have apparently been preserved and incorporated into Mr. Calatrava's design, which sits obliquely on the block. Mr. Calatrava said on Wednesday that he found the Wedge of Light a "beautiful idea" and one of the strongest symbolic features of the plan.

"I am working fully with the master plan," Mr. Calatrava said, "and using it as inspiration."

For his part, Mr. Libeskind, who has fought on several other fronts to protect his overall concept, said today that Mr. Calatrava had embraced and improved the plan.

"I have to say that Santiago Calatrava's interpretation of the Wedge of Light is a brilliant one," Mr. Libeskind said today. "It's an inspiring one because it takes the master plan and contributes even a greater significance to the spaces that an architect of his caliber can do."

Speaking about the design on Wednesday, Mr. Libeskind said: "I was very moved when he showed me the direction for the station, which not only is reinforcing the Wedge of Light but creating something wonderful as a civic building."

"He understood the musical quality of the whole plan," Mr. Libeskind said.

Mr. Calatrava, too, used musical terms to describe the place of the terminal within an ascending spiral of office skyscrapers that reaches its peak at Freedom Tower. The terminal will sit between a 62-story building and a 65-story building.

Rather than compete with a crescendo, Mr. Calatrava said, he envisioned the terminal as a pause. "Part of the music that is very important is the silent moment," he said. "El silencio es tambien musica."

From the NYTimes:
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/22/nyregion/22CND-PATH.html
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