Friday, March 27, 2015

Talent agency wants Matt McConaughey speaking fee secret

HOUSTON — A celebrity booking agency has told the Texas attorney general’s office it is not all right, all right, all right to make public how much the University of Houston is paying actor Matthew McConaughey to speak at the school’s May 15 commencement ceremony. The university has declined to release the information because its […]

Grateful Oklahomans salvage belongings after killer storm

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. — Oklahomans salvaged soggy belongings Thursday after the Plains’ first tornado outbreak of 2015, expressing gratitude that casualties were low but understanding that nature’s next punch could be far worse. One person died and dozens of people were injured when tornadoes hit parts of the Oklahoma City and Tulsa areas during Wednesday’s […]

Fact Check: Myths in the political roar over Common Core

ATLANTA — In the political uproar over Common Core, various myths are peddled as fact. Do the learning standards really mean the federal government is serving as a “national school board,” as Sen. Marco Rubio says? That’s hard to square with the reality that the standards were developed by governors and state education leaders. Should leaders “repeal […]

US: Chicago-area cousins planned US terrorist attack

CHICAGO — An Illinois Army National Guard soldier vowed to bring “the flames of war to the heart” of America if he was unable to get to the Middle East to join the Islamic State group, and his cousin bragged he could kill up to 150 people in a terrorist attack in the U.S., federal […]

Report: Teen says mom killed her siblings found in freezer

DETROIT — A teenager told authorities that her mother killed two siblings and forced her to put one of the bodies in the freezer of their Detroit home where both were found by an eviction crew. Details of death and extreme abuse emerged Thursday as Mitchelle Blair appeared in court, two days after the bodies […]

House OKs bipartisan Medicare doctor bill; fate up to Senate

WASHINGTON — In uncommon bipartisan harmony, the House approved a $214 billion bill on Thursday permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts, moving Congress closer to resolving a problem that has plagued it for years. The lopsided 392-37 vote shifted pressure onto the Senate, where its prospects have brightened as Democrats have muffled their criticism and President […]

Frustration permeates college contract negotiations

FAIRFIELD — Contract negotiations between faculty and administration at Solano Community College continued this week but with a divisive edge to the ongoing meetings with a mediator. Both sides said there was small positive “movement” toward agreement Tuesday but both sides also expressed frustration with the length of time it was taking to come to an […]

Fairfield police log: March 24, 2015

12:13 a.m. — Drunken driving, 2000 block of NORTH TEXAS STREET 12:30 a.m. — Battery, 1800 block of SAN ANSELMO STREET 2:24 a.m. — Vehicle theft, 200 block of TOKAY COURT 2:32 a.m. — Battery, WASHINGTON STREET 6:11 a.m. — Vehicle theft, 100 block of TABOR AVENUE 6:15 a.m. — Vehicle burglary, 3000 block of NORTH TEXAS STREET 6:17 a.m. — Vehicle […]

Vacaville adds FBI checks for job seekers

VACAVILLE — FBI criminal history reviews should be added for job applicants, the City Council agreed Tuesday after the staff noted potential risks in using only state California Department of Justice criminal histories for people who have lived outside the state. The state justice department reports only arrests and prosecutions in California, Dawn Leonardini, director […]

Man accused in Super Bowl Sunday sexual assault to stand trial

FAIRFIELD — A Vacaville woman who started drinking heavily on Super Bowl Sunday with her husband and friends at a Vacaville bar took the witness stand Tuesday to recount blacking out and then waking up in the hospital. The woman was testifying against Miguel A. Garcia, who she does not remember encountering as she was […]

PI drops restraining order request against police detective

FAIRFIELD — A local private investigator has ended his effort to get a restraining order against a Fairfield police officer. Eugene Borghello, who had been scheduled to be in court Wednesday for a hearing on the restraining order, got into a gruff exchange of words with Detective Steve Trojanowski Jr. in a courthouse hallway in December during […]

US anti-drugs work in Colombia uses cancer-linked herbicide

BOGOTA, Colombia — New labeling on the world’s most popular weed killer as a likely cause of cancer is raising more questions for an aerial spraying program in Colombia that underpins U.S.-financed efforts to wipe out cocaine crops. The International Agency for Research on Cancer, a French-based research arm of the World Health Organization, on Thursday […]

Lee Kuan Yew, founder of modern Singapore, dies at 91

SINGAPORE — Lee Kuan Yew, who founded modern Singapore and was both feared for his authoritarian tactics and admired for turning the city-state into one of the world’s richest nations, died Monday, the government said. He was 91. Lee was admitted to Singapore General Hospital on Feb. 5 for severe pneumonia and was later put on […]

UN envoy: Yemen is being pushed ‘to the edge of civil war’

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. special envoy for Yemen warned an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council on Sunday that events appear to be leading the Arab country “to the edge of civil war” and urged all parties to step back from the brink and resolve the conflict peacefully. Jamal Benomar stressed repeatedly in a […]

In battle for coffee pod market, it’s Keurig vs. recyclables

LINCOLN — One measure of how heated the environmental battle has become over coffee giant Keurig Green Mountain’s $5 billion-a-year plastic pods is how often the company’s opponents use galactic comparisons. Keurig, the single-serve coffee industry’s leader, produced enough plastic coffee pods last year to circle the earth more than 10 times, according to one analyst’s […]

Horoscopes: March 21, 2015

We are still riding high on the bright energy of the new moon, the total solar eclipse and the spring equinox of yesterday, with the Aries moon leading the way with the energy of a rambunctious child. Everything is a wonder seen through new eyes. “In the springtime, the only pretty ring time, when birds […]

Men named Richard respond to those who make fun of their nickname

Dear Annie: I read the letter from “Richard,” who was named for a hero of World War II, but whose nickname (“Dick”) elicits snickers. My name is Richard, and my friends call me Dick. I’m 79 and 6-foot-4. I was football captain in high school, played at university, and spent four years as a military […]


CHRISTMAS COMPETITION — THE BEST ENTRIES There was a larger entry than usual for my Christmas Competition. Interestingly, the majority erred slightly in the declarer-play problem. They correctly went for either a 3-2 club split or the diamond finesse, but omitted to cash the club ace first, which gains when either opponent has a singleton […]

In early states, Bush walks tightrope with conservatives

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — Jeb Bush is betting his political future these days on the hope that pragmatism will trump conservative hostility in 2016. Fresh off his first public tours of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, the Republican White House prospect has settled on an early approach for dealing with skeptics on the right, casting himself as […]

6-year-old heart patient’s shooting death rattles St. Louis

ST. LOUIS — Marcus Johnson Jr.’s parents figured a sunny day at the park was just what their son needed while recovering from heart surgery. Instead, the outing turned deadly when the 6-year-old was shot in the chest in an attack the parents said stemmed from a traffic dispute. A funeral for their boy was […]

Toddler survives near-drowning after 101 minutes of CPR

In a survival story his doctors call extraordinary, a 22-month-old Pennsylvania boy whose lifeless body was pulled from an icy creek was revived after an hour and 41 minutes of CPR and has suffered virtually no lingering effects. Gardell Martin came home from the hospital on Sunday, and his doctors said Thursday he has made […]

Records: Woman accused of taking baby said she was pregnant

LONGMONT, Colo. — A Colorado woman accused of cutting open the belly of a pregnant woman and removing her unborn baby from her womb had told her family she was expecting a baby boy and had arranged to meet her husband for a pre-natal appointment on Wednesday, the same day of the attack, according to […]

FBI agent: Tsarnaev’s computer contained extremist materials

BOSTON — Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev had a variety of extremist materials on his computer, including an issue of the al-Qaida magazine Inspire with an article entitled “Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom,” an FBI agent testified Thursday. Tsarnaev, 21, faces the possibility of the death penalty in the 2013 attack, […]

Man sentenced in online threat case tied to larger debate

SEATTLE — A Washington man who posted Facebook comments threatening a former Ferguson, Missouri, police officer will avoid prison but has been ordered to stay off social media sites in a case that is part of a broader legal debate about when social media rants go beyond hyperbole and become a crime. Before U.S. District […]

House, Senate panels adopt balanced-budget plans

WASHINGTON — Republicans in Congress advanced balanced-budget plans bristling with cuts in Medicaid and other benefit programs Thursday, determined to make a down payment on last fall’s campaign promise to erase deficits by the end of the decade. Last-minute maneuvering to match Pentagon spending levels requested by President Barack Obama consumed GOP lawmakers in both […]