Election 2014: Rise of independents scrambles the math

Kansas, South Dakota, Alaska, and Maine all feature major independent candidates in statewide races, wreaking havoc with the usual political order. American voters are also moving away from the two main parties. 

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Canada’s Parliament Hill reopens following Wednesday shooting

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadians returned to the grounds of their parliament building on Saturday, three days after a homegrown radical rushed in armed with a rifle after shooting dead a soldier in the second attack on the country's military at home in a week.

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Study: 23 British jihadis have already died in Syria, Iraq

British Islamists are dying at a rate of one every three weeks, according to a study published by Kings College in London.

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ISIL pounded as Iraqi and Kurd forces advance

Peshmerga and Iraqi forces say they have retaken key areas of in Iraq's north and south, supported by 22 US air strikes.

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Football clockwatch: Premier League updates and latest news live!

Its half time in all four Premier League games. Theres only one goalless game, at Anfield where the home side reckon they should have had at least one penalty, possibly two (Sterling also having been fouled in the box at some point).

Crystal Palace have a penalty! Pocognolis the offender, coming across as Bolasie enters the penalty area on the right edge and taking his legs. Jedinak sends the keeper the wrong way.

Liverpools Adam Lallana is taken out in the penalty area, but doesnt get a penalty, and at the other end theres a good run down the right and a pull-back to Livermore, whose shot is weak and saved.

Neil Warnock has just blown his nose with a hankerchief. Thats proper old school that is. You dont see a lot of hankies these days.

Stokes Ryan Shawcross gets booked for changing his boots without leaving the pitch.

Penalty shout for Palace! Zaha, an absolute penalty-winning machine in his first spell at the club, goes down in the penalty area. It looks like someone did clip his ankles there, but the referee is unimpressed.

Now the Saints are in the lead! From a free-kick the balls worked into the box, an initial effort hits the post and rebounds to Mané, who sends it into the other side of the goal!

At Sunderland, Cazorla has a fine shot from 25 yards that screams across goal and not far wide.

Ooooh! Then the corner is pulled back to Schneiderlin, who shoots over when well placed!

At Southampton, Tadic cuts in from the right and lashes in a low shot towards the near post thats tipped wide.

A horror show! Wes Brown has the ball, just inside his own half, no trouble in sight. But then he tries to hook it back to his goalkeeper, totally mishits it hardly hits it at all, to be frank and Sánchez pounces, runs clear and then chips the onrushing keeper from a foot inside the penalty area.

In response to Ash Khan who would like news of a Liverpool victory, I recommend he turns off the radio, writes Duncan Smith. I can recommend a number of amateur fantasy fiction websites for him though.

At Anfield, an obviously-recovered Can launches into a strong run from the halfway line, but once he reaches the edge of the area he overhits his pass to Balotelli.



Oooooh! And at the Hawthorns Gardner tests the keeper with a long-range rocket, before Dorrans, I think, shoots over from the corner!

Everyones surrounding the referee at the Stadium of Light, and Gus Poyets looking aghast. Whats he done? Looks like Rodwell flew into a challenge two-footed, but hes still on the pitch so the referee cant have been too harsh.

Palace send in a free-kick, from which Foster tips over a headed effort. And when the corner drops to Hangeland he clips it into the net while falling over!

Thanks to all the eagle-eyed readers who spotted that Arsenal arent actually playing Southampton today. Sunderland are the glum-looking outfit, obviously.

My wifes in labour at the hospital here in Australia, where its 1am, writes Ash Khan. Shes just asked me to turn off the live audio commentary even though I said the sounds of a Liverpool victory might be the perfect way to welcome our son. So now Im stuck with you!

Turn the radio back on and tell her not to be so selfish. If that doesnt work, Ill be glad to help.

The balls cleared off the line at Anfield! Lovren with the headed effort, from a Gerrard corner, but Elmohamady is on the post and heads clear.

Sunderland have a decent shot from the edge of the area, but it fizzes a yard wide.

Arsenal are not yet beating a rather glum Sunderland, though Gibbs has had an extremely optimistic 40-yard volleyed attempt that went 20 yards wide. And also a bit high.

Liverpools Emre Can is receiving lengthy treatment, just a few minutes in, though hes able to walk of the pitch unaided so I expect hell be back in action shortly.

Aggressive caps-lock usage of the day:


And theyre off! Except Southampton v Stoke, which is about to start, a couple of minutes late.

Approximately 40 seconds until kick-off. Deep breath now.

Oi, someone wake that kid up, some chap wants to take its photo.

Its all over at Upton Park, and West Hams insanely points-profitable start to the season continues.

95: IT'S ALL OVER! WEST HAM WIN AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Theyre going to have five minutes of stoppage time at West Ham. Still 2-1.

Theo Walcotts on Arsenals bench today, and could make his first appearance since January. Here he is getting off a coach.

Here are Gus Poyets pre-match thoughts. Réveillère is on the bench and thus in line for a debut at some point.

Yes, its been a long week. Its been different. Its been not the usual one. But now we want to play the game. The sooner we play the game the better for the players. Its been difficult for us in the past few years to beat Arsenal here. They know how to play against Sunderland, so we need to do things a little bit different today.

Quite the finish at Upton Park, where West Ham are 2-1 up against Manchester City with eight minutes plus stoppage time to play, and City attacking relentlessly. Scott Murray has the details here.

All the Premier League teams are right here. If you particularly want to know whos playing elsewhere, I take requests.

Liverpool: Mignolet, Manquillo, Skrtel, Lovren, Moreno, Allen, Gerrard, Can, Sterling, Balotelli, Lallana. Subs: Brad Jones, Toure, Lambert, Markovic, Johnson, Henderson, Coutinho.
Hull: Jakupovic, Bruce, Davies, Chester, Elmohamady, Huddlestone, Diame, Livermore, Brady, Ben Arfa, Hernandez. Subs: Watson, Rosenior, Meyler, McShane, Aluko, Ramirez, Quinn.
Referee: Neil Swarbrick.

Sadio Mane was the only Southampton change from the side that demolished Sunderland last weekend. The Senegal winger replaced Shane Long for the visit of Stoke, who made two alterations at St Marys. Former Southampton player Mark Hughes brought in Geoff Cameron and Jonathan Walters in place of Stephen Ireland and Mame Biram Diouf.

Theo Walcott returned to the Arsenal bench as his nine-month injury lay-off came to an end at Sunderland. The England international was a surprise inclusion in the matchday squad after recovering from a knee problem, although Arsene Wenger made only two changes to the XI which started in the Champions League at Anderlecht in midweek, with Mikel Arteta and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replacing the suspended Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey, who was also named among the substitutes. Sunderland head coach Gus Poyet resisted the temptation to make wholesale changes after last weekends 8-0 drubbing at Southampton, with only Jordi Gomez and Connor Wickham making way for Jack Rodwell and Adam Johnson.

Goalkeeper Ben Foster returned for West Brom for Saturdays game against Crystal Palace, having missed Mondays 2-2 draw with Manchester United with a calf injury. Seven-goal Saido Berahino started up front for the in-form Baggies, with 10million record signing Brown Ideye again on the bench after recovering from an ankle injury. Palace boss Neil Warnock made three changes from last weekends 2-1 defeat to Chelsea as Wilfried Zaha, Adrian Mariappa and Marouane Chamakh replaced Jason Puncheon, James McArthur and the suspended Damien Delaney.

Hello world!

Just the four top-flight 3pm kick-offs today, but as ever a packed schedule outside the Premier League, with Middlesbrough v Watford, which pits second against third in the Championship, probably the most eye-catching of the games elsewhere.

Continue reading...

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Take it or leaf it: Sayed Kashua falls for the charms of autumn

In Israel, autumn was accursed and for the Palestinian people, it has traumatic connotations. But in the U.S., it's a very different season.

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An Israeli classic lost in translation – to the stage

A new theatrical version of a cult Israeli movie - Ephraim Kishon's 'Blaumilch Canal' - fails to inspire and simply doesn't capture the magic of the original.

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On eve of poll, Ukraine leader seeks support for pro-Europe course

KIEV (Reuters) - President Petro Poroshenko called on Ukrainians on Saturday to elect a majority on Sunday that would see through a pro-Europe, reform agenda and break with the Soviet past.

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Obama stresses ‘facts, not fear’ in public response to Ebola in the US

  • We have to be guided by the science, president says
  • Woman in New Jersey tests negative but remains in isolation
Continue reading...

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Ebola medical worker quarantined in New Jersey tests negative for virus

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A medical worker in New Jersey quarantined after arriving at an airport after treating Ebola victims in West Africa has tested negative for the virus, the state's health department said on Saturday.

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