Vacationing Obama Gets Temp Press Secretary

Vacationing Obama gets temp press secretary – and we care because . . . he’s from Buffalo!  Bill Burton is a Buffalo native and on the fast track in Washington.

VINEYARD HAVEN, Mass. (AP) – With a broad grin and aw-shucks approach, Bill Burton is a marked contrast with his boss, the always ready-for-battle White House press secretary Robert Gibbs.

While Gibbs comes off as combative and hot, Burton is low-key and self-deprecating. He always seems ready to smile.

Describing how Obama was spending his vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, Burton joked Tuesday, “This will probably get me fired, but I know that Valerie (Jarrett, a senior presidential adviser) did not do so well in Scrabble against the president.”

For two weeks, Burton is standing in for the vacationing Gibbs, serving as the public face of the White House. That’s allowed Burton to gain stature on one of the key indices in Washington: proximity to power.

Just 33 years old, the Buffalo, N.Y., native has already worked in three presidential campaigns and on Capitol Hill. He’s seen as a top contender to be White House press secretary if Gibbs moves on. Burton – like Obama, the son of a black father and white mother – appears to be the first African-American to take the podium and speak on behalf of the president.

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Deli Meat Only Sold At Walmart Recalled

Have you shopped at Walmart recently?  Picked up any grocery items?  How about a Marketside Grab and Go deli sandwich?  If you did you most likely didn’t have any adverse reaction but according to a news report the ham and swiss, Italian hero, roast beef and cheddar as well as smokehouse hero were all affected by a harmful bacteria.

About 380,000 pounds of Buffalo-made deli meat sold only at Walmart has been voluntarily recalled after a sample tested positive for harmful bacteria.

A sample of Zemco roast beef, analyzed by the Georgia Department of Agriculture, tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes. That bacteria can cause Listeriosis, which leads to fever, muscle aches and nausea.

Zemco Industries, a Perry Street company owned by Tyson Foods, distributed the affected meat to Walmart, which then used it to make its Marketside Grab and Go deli sandwiches. Most of the sandwiches have already been eaten without incident, a spokesman for Tyson said. Though no illnesses have been reported, Zemco recalled the remaining product as a precaution.

None of the meat was sold in retail packages or at Walmart deli counters.

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Digital Devices Deprive Brain of Needed Downtime


When you are on the go, go, go you know you need some down time to let your body revive.  Guess what?  Your brain needs down time too.  Too much digital input can really over work your brain.

Technology makes the tiniest windows of time entertaining, and potentially productive. But scientists point to an unanticipated side effect: when people keep their brains busy with digital input, they are forfeiting downtime that could allow them to better learn and remember information, or come up with new ideas.

At the University of California, San Francisco, scientists have found that when rats have a new experience, like exploring an unfamiliar area, their brains show new patterns of activity. But only when the rats take a break from their exploration do they process those patterns in a way that seems to create a persistent memory of the experience.

The researchers suspect that the findings also apply to how humans learn.

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U.S. Rejected Hen Vaccine Despite British Success

Vaccine for hens against salmonella, the bacteria that tainted eggs and caused thousands of cases of illness.

They say hindsight is 20/20.  The Brits made a decision a decade ago that resulted in the threat of getting salmonella from infected eggs virtually impossible.   Britain began vaccinating their hens against the bacteria years ago and that simple but decisive step virtually wiped out the health threat.

When American regulators created new egg safety rules that went into effect last month, they declared that there was not enough evidence to conclude that vaccinating hens against salmonella would prevent people from getting sick. The Food and Drug Administration decided not to mandate vaccination of hens — a precaution that would cost less than a penny per a dozen eggs.

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PALADINO TO LAZIO: Stand Up and Debate, or Drop Out

Career politician Lazio won’t give Republicans a debate

(BUFFALO, NY) - Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino, a Republican candidate for Governor of New York, today called again on his opponent Rick Lazio to confirm the NY1/YNN debate on August 30th in Syracuse. But Paladino also upped the ante and urged Lazio to give Republicans the debate they deserve or drop out of the race.

“Clearly, Rick Lazio is too frightened to appear at a public one-on-one debate with me,” Paladino said. “Maybe Rick can’t face the voters because he has so many smudges on his lifelong record as a career politician.”

“Not only did Rick take a fat Wall Street bonus of $1.6 million from TARP-financed JP Morgan Bank, but he likely took the bonus for trying to rig the bids on a government program,” Paladino said, referring to a blockbuster Village Voice expose on Lazio’s dealings as a lobbyist for JP Morgan. (READ HERE:  The Village Voice)

“If his TARP bonus didn’t come from his corrupt Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation deal, where did he earn the money – another bid-rigging gambit?” Paldino asked. “New York taxpayers deserve to know.”

“Rick also appears to have put extra effort into grabbing the retirement savings of millions of Americans to steer it into mortgage-backed securities invented by one of his largest donors, Lewis Ranieri,” Paladino said. “If I had done that and then been investigated for bid rigging, I’d be afraid to face the voters, too.”

According to the Village Voice, multiple federal investigations into Lazio’s backroom dealings with Charles Millard, former head of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, were dropped only because the deal was scuttled to fend off investigators. Lazio, who is still a registered lobbyist today, declared his campaign for governor just days after running from his money-making gambit and likely escaping prosecution.

“Lazio the Lobbyist’s campaign is failing and New York’s Republicans are calling for a debate on the issues,” said Paladino, who has never debated in his life. “If Rick Lazio can’t stand the heat now he needs to get out of this race because he’ll never find the guts to confront Andrew Cuomo.”

Carl Paladino, a successful Western New York real estate developer and attorney, is a Republican candidate for Governor of New York. He and Tom Ognibene, candidate for Lieutenant Governor, petitioned their way into the Republican Primary and canvassed to create a new Taxpayers ballot line.

For more information on where Carl Paladino stands on the issues, please visit

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Higgins Hails New York State Education Funding Award

New York Receives Nearly $700 Million in Race to the Top Competition

Today, the Department of Education announced that New York State is among the 10 winners receiving a Race to the Top grant totaling nearly $700 million in federal education funding to the state, made available through funds from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.   Of the second round winners, New York scored second only to Massachusetts.

“One of the best investments that we can make in our community’s development is in the classroom with our future leaders,” said Congressman Higgins.  “By raising the bar to education standards, we are taking monumental steps to true education reform.  With these unprecedented levels of federal education funds, we are making significant progress to make those goals a reality for New York.”

New York State will receive over $696 million to help advance the Regents reform agenda through 27 projects over four grant years. Half of the funds will go towards participating local education agencies to support implementation of the program, and the other half will go towards improving educators and directly supporting new curriculum models, standards, assessments, teacher and principal preparation and professional development, and the statewide student data system.

New York State’s Race to the Top application incorporates reforms made possible by state legislation enacted earlier this year. These include:

  • Establishing a new teacher and principal evaluation system that makes student achievement data a substantial component of how educators are assessed and supported;
  • Raising New York’s charter school cap from 200 to 460 and enhancing charter school accountability and transparency; 
  • Enabling school districts to enter into  contracts with Educational Partnership Organizations (the term for non-profit Education Management Organizations in New York State) for the management of their persistently lowest-achieving schools and schools under registration review;
  • Appropriating $20.4 million in capital funds to the State Education Department to implement its longitudinal data system.

Through funding from the Recovery Act, the $4.35 billion Race to the Top Fund is an unprecedented federal investment in reform, with $4 billion for statewide reform grants and $350 million to support states working together to improve the quality of their assessments. The Race to the Top state competition is designed to reward states that are leading the way in comprehensive, coherent, statewide education reform across four key areas:

  1. Adopting standards and assessments that prepare students to succeed in college and the workplace;
  2. Building data systems that measure student growth and success, and inform teachers and principals how to improve instruction;
  3. Recruiting, developing, rewarding, and retaining effective teachers and principals, especially where they are needed most; and
  4. Turning around their lowest-performing schools.

Including both Phase 1 and Phase 2 winners, 11 states and the District of Columbia have now been awarded money to invest in groundbreaking education reforms that will directly impact 13.6 million students and 980,000 teachers in 25,000 schools across the country.

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Seneca County Switches Support To Carl Paladino

(BUFFALO, NY) - The Seneca County Republican Committee and Chairman Ken Padgett announced today their endorsement of Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino for Governor of New York. Seneca County is the latest of many county GOP groups switching their support to Carl Paladino.

The Seneca County Republican Committee voted Monday night to endorse Paladino on the eve of a campaign event for the candidate in Seneca County on Tuesday.

“Republicans across New York are talking, and Carl’s campaign is catching fire with many of my colleagues in Party leadership,” Chairman Padgett said. “Carl is proposing new ideas to help solve our State’s worst problems while his opponents duck the issues.”

“We are particularly disappointed in Rick Lazio for denying Republicans across New York State the debate we deserve,” Chairman Padgett said.

“Under Chairman Padgett, the Seneca GOP organization has delivered time and time again for candidates and I am deeply thankful, honored and humbled by the County Republicans’ support today,” Paladino said. “Seneca County is an important piece of the puzzle we are putting together as we drive toward victory in the Republican Primary.”

Padgett joins several Republican county committee chairs endorsing Carl Paladino, including Mike Norris of Niagara County, Cherl Heary of Cayuga County, Richard Siebert of Genesee County, Ed Morgan of Orleans County, and Nick Langworthy of Erie County. Announcements of other GOP leadership endorsements are imminent.

Carl Paladino, a successful Western New York real estate developer and attorney, is a Republican candidate for Governor of New York. He and Tom Ognibene, candidate for Lieutenant Governor, petitioned their way into the Republican Primary and canvassed to create a new Taxpayers ballot line.

For more information on where Carl Paladino stands on the issues, please visit

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Hacker’s Arrest Offers Glimpse Into Crime in Russia

A video on the Web site of the hacker known as BadB promotes credit card fraud. He was arrested this month in France.

Why do so many computer hackers live and work in Russia?  How about the fact that their police type folks are reticent to pursue criminals, and I’m being kind.

On the Internet, he was known as BadB, a disembodied criminal flitting from one server to another selling stolen credit card numbers despite being pursued by the United States Secret Service.

And in real life, he was nearly as untouchable — because he lived in Russia.

Law enforcement groups in Russia have been reluctant to pursue these talented authors of Internet fraud, for reasons, security experts say, of incompetence, corruption or national pride. In this environment, BadB’s network arose as “one of the most sophisticated organizations of online financial criminals in the world,” according to a statement issued by Michael P. Merritt, the assistant director of investigations for the Secret Service, which pursues counterfeiting and some electronic financial fraud.

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Lazio Falling

Carl Paladino

It’s less than a month before Primary Day in New York and GOP conven tion-endorsed gubernatorial candidate Rick Lazio is rapidly losing ground to challenger Carl Paladino of Buffalo.

According to the latest Siena College poll, Lazio’s 20-point lead over the gadfly businessman, registered a month ago, has shrunk to 13 points, 43-30.

And in recent days Paladino has been endorsed by several upstate GOP county chairmen and such elected officials as Assemblywoman Jane Corwin of Niagara.

Yes, there’s a regional element to some of this — Paladino is something of a hero in the Buffalo area — but that alone can’t explain why Lazio, who’s been around New York politics in one form or another for more than 20 years, can scarcely break 40 percent support from his party.

Maybe it’s because Paladino talks about issues relevant to people.

Read more in the New York Post

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Paladino Is Thinking Out Of The Box To Find Workable Solutions

 Carl Paladino

A New York reporter attacked Carl Paladino in print for what he believed Mr. Paladino said and meant during a speech.  What he failed to do was ask questions of Mr. Paladino personally.  This is poor reporting.

It is easy to misconstrue what someone says when they are giving a speech, especially if you have your mind already set on what the speaker is going to say.  As the Republican  Primary gets closer the media will try to show Carl Palidino as a man whose ideas aren’t workable and that his opponent’s, who doesn’t come to our part of  New York, plan is practical.

We the people of WNY need to elect someone who knows the real problems of our area.  Mr. Paladino may have propsed some plans which need refinement but he is an intellent man who can modify them.

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