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breaking news


Cheaper version of Viagra will hit the market soon

Published: Thursday, December 07, 2017 @ 8:53 PM

5 things to know about Viagra Pfizer Inc. release the drug in 1998 to help men with erectile dysfunction. It works by increasing the blood flow to the penis. Side effects may include flushing, upset stomach, and muscle aches. More than 62 million men across the globe have used the blue pill. Pfizer will offer a generic version for the first time in Dec. 2017.

Pfizer Inc.’s Viagra is about to face tougher competition, because many drug makers will soon be introducing generic alternatives to the popular erectile dysfunction pill.

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The company’s patent-protected monopoly will expire Monday, leaving room for other businesses to create other versions of the $65 blue capsule. 

One includes Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc., which will begin offering a pill Dec. 11. The price has not been disclosed. However, the AP reported that several more companies are set to release generics next summer, which could lower the price by up to 90 percent. 

But Pfizer is staying in the fight. “We believe that the story for Viagra isn’t done,” Jim Sage, president of U.S. brands for Pfizer Essential Health, told the AP.

That’s why the corporation is launching a generic pill this month, too, in an attempt to reduce potential losses when other brands become available. It will be half the price of the original.

The company also announced a subscription service for Viagra, available in January, which will include discounts and an online home delivery program for both insured and uninsured men. 

Since it launched in 1998, 62 million men across the globe have used Viagra, transforming the way people think about the once-private medical condition. It also introduced another option for men aside from penile injections and implants.

(Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Sage said Pfizer is now looking forward to a “new chapter.” Want to learn more about the transition? Read more at AP. 

Texas judge interrupts jury, says God told him defendant is not guilty

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 2:44 PM

Texas Judge Says God Told Him Defendant is Not Guilty

Comal County judge said God told him to intervene in jury deliberations to sway jurors to return a not guilty verdict in the trial of a Buda woman accused of trafficking a teen girl for sex.

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Judge Jack Robison apologized to jurors for the interruption but defended his actions by telling them, “When God tells me I gotta do something, I gotta do it,” according to the Herald-Zeitung, in New Braunfels.

The jury went against the judge’s wishes, finding Gloria Romero-Perez guilty of continuous trafficking of a person and later sentenced her to 25 years in prison. They found her not guilty of a separate charge of sale or purchase of a child.

Robison, who also presides in Hays County, did not respond to a message left with his court coordinator, Steve Thomas, who said the case is pending.

The Herald-Zeitung reported that Robison recused himself before the trial’s sentencing phase and was replaced by Judge Gary Steele. The defendant’s attorney asked for a mistrial but was denied.

Robison’s actions could trigger an investigation from the State Commission on Judicial Conduct, which has disciplined Robison in the past.

In 2011, the commission slapped Robison with a private reprimand for improperly jailing a Caldwell County grandfather who had called him a fool for a ruling Robison made in a child custody case involving the man’s granddaughter.

The reprimand, the commission’s harshest form of rebuke, said Robison “exceeded the scope of his authority and failed to comply with the law” by jailing the man for contempt of court without a hearing or advance notice of the charge.

Police: Maine man punches himself in face to avoid sobriety test 

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 11:17 AM

Brian Fogg was arrested on Jan. 13.
Waldo County Jail.
Brian Fogg was arrested on Jan. 13.(Waldo County Jail.)

Police have accused a Maine man of punching himself several times in the face to avoid a Breathalyzer test, The Bangor Daily News reported.

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Police suspected Brian Fogg, 27, of Belfast, to be intoxicated when they were called to a residence on Jan. 13 and found Fogg’s vehicle stuck in a ditch, police said. Belfast police said Fogg and a homeowner had gotten into an argument, and Fogg allegedly struck and dented the homeowner’s car.

After Fogg failed a sobriety test, police took him to jail and attempted to give him a Breathalyzer test, the Daily News reported.

As officers were explaining the testing process, Fogg allegedly punched himself in the face several times, the Daily News reported.

Belfast Detective Sgt. Gerry Lincoln said that Fogg “took that option (punching himself), which wasn’t one of the ones we gave to him.” 

He added that because people had option of declining to take a Breathalzyer test, it was unusual for someone to injure himself to avoid it.“We took that as a refusal to take the test,” Lincoln told the Daily News.

Fogg was charged with operating under the influence anyway, in addition to criminal mischief and falsifying physical evidence. He was released on bail, police said.

NFL championship games 2018: What time, what channel, odds for Jags vs. Patriots and Vikings vs. Eagles

Published: Saturday, January 20, 2018 @ 11:15 AM

The Most Memorable Super Bowl Halftime Performances

We are one day out from “Championship Sunday,” where the teams who will play in the Super Bowl will be determined.
The Minnesota Vikings will take on the Philadelphia Eagles for the NFC Championship, while the New England Patriots play the Jacksonville Jaguars for the AFC title.

If the Vikings win, they will be the first team to ever play in the Super Bowl at their home stadium. If Philadelphia wins, it will be the first time in the team’s history.

If New England wins the AFC Conference championship, no one will be surprised. It will be the Pats 10th trip to the big game. If the Jaguars win, a lot of people will be surprised – New England is currently favored by 7.5 points.

Here’s a look at what time the games kickoff on Sunday, what channel, where they are livestreamed and the latest odds.

The AFC Championship Game

Jacksonville (12-6) at New England (14-3)

What time: 3:05 p.m. ET

What channel: CBS will broadcast the game

Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.

LivestreamCBSSports.com According to CBS, “you can stream via desktop, the CBS Sports App on iOS and Android tablets as well as on Roku, Apple TV, tvOS, Amazon Fire TV, Xbox One, Chromecast and Windows 10 devices.”

Weather at game time via NFLWeather: 42 degrees, skies overcast;  with winds west at 2 mph 

Line: New England -7.5

The NFC Championship Game

Minnesota (14-3) at Philadelphia (14-3)

What time: 6:40 p.m. ET

What channel: Fox is broadcasting the game

Where: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Penn.

LivestreamFox Sports Go

Weather at game time via NFLWeather: 44 degrees, skies overcast, with winds SSW at 3 mph

Line: Minnesota -3 

Super Bowl LII

When: Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018

Who: The winners of the two championship games

Where: U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, Minn.

Halftime entertainer: Justin Timberlake will headline the Pepsi Super Bowl LII Halftime Show

What time: 6:30 p.m. ET 

What channel: NBC will broadcast the game 

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady warms up during an NFL football practice, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, in Foxborough, Mass. The Patriots host the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC championship on Sunday in Foxborough.(AP Photo/Bill Sikes)

Government shutdown: What will close; will you get your Social Security check; what will happen to SNAP, WIC

Published: Thursday, January 18, 2018 @ 12:35 PM

What You Need to Know: Government Shutdown

Update: While the House passed legislation on Thursday to fund government  services, the Senate on Friday failed to vote on a continuing resolution that would keep the government up and running. With no bill to fund the government, non-essential services have been shutdown. 

Below is the original story that explains what will happen now that the government has been shut down.

The fight over a border wall, the fate of nearly 800,000 DACA recipients, and the wrangling over the funding of an insurance program for children could force a U.S. government shutdown after midnight on Friday if Congress does not pass legislation that would keep the government running.

While negotiations on a temporary spending bill, called a continuing resolution, are ongoing, House Republican leaders said late Wednesday that  they lacked the votes to prevent a shutdown, but that they are pressing members to back Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, (R-Wisconsin), on the  temporary spending bill.

“I think it passes,” Republican Study Committee Chairman Mark Walker, (R-North Carolina), told reporters on Wednesday. “I don’t think it’s overwhelming, but I think it passes.”

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What would happen if no bill is passed and the government “shuts down?” Here’s what to expect:

First, a government shutdown doesn’t mean the government completely shuts down. Employees and services deemed “essential” would remain in place. About half of the federal employee workforce, however, could be furloughed – sent home without pay.

Government agencies would shut down because of the lack of a bill that funds services those agencies provide. What Congress will be considering Thursday night and Friday is a continuing resolution, a way to temporarily fund the government.

What is a continuing resolution?
A continuing resolution, or “CR,” is legislation that funds government operations at the current spending level. In normal years, a bill that funds government operations is signed by Oct. 1, which is the end of the fiscal year. That didn’t happen this year.

CRs can fund the government for days, weeks or months. The CR that could be considered Thursday would fund the government through Feb. 16.

Here is a list of services and how they would be affected if a CR is not passed by Friday night:
Air travel
Air travel would not be affected as federal air traffic controllers would remain on the job and Transportation Security Administration screeners would remain in place.
Federal court
For about two weeks, federal courts would continue operating normally. After that time, the judiciary would have to furlough employees not considered essential.
Food safety
The Food and Drug Administration would handle high-risk recalls. Most routine safety inspections would be halted.
Health
Patients in the National Institutes of Health would continue to be treated. New patients would not be accepted until a funding bill is in place.
International travel 
You could still get a passport and visa applications would still be processed by the State Department. Fees collected when someone applies for a visa or a passport fund those services.
Loans 
The Federal Housing Administration, the agency that guarantees about 30 percent of all American home mortgages, wouldn't be able to underwrite or approve any new loans during a shutdown, causing a delay for those using one of those loans to purchase a home. 
The mail
You would still get mail, as the U.S. Postal Service is not funded by taxpayer dollars for everyday operations.
Military
Active-duty military personnel would stay on duty, but their paychecks would be delayed.
National parks
All national parks would be closed, as would the Smithsonian museums. Visitors in overnight campgrounds in national parks would be given 48 hours to make alternate arrangements and leave the park.
School lunches, SNAP and WIC
School breakfasts and lunches funded by the federal government would not be affected. The Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, or WIC, could be affected. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, which used to be called the Food Stamp Program, would continue to be funded and SNAP benefits would continue to be distributed. But several smaller feeding programs would not have the money to operate.
Science
The National Weather Service would keep forecasting weather.
Social Security
Social Security, Medicare and unemployment benefits would be paid, but new applications for those payments could be delayed. 
Veterans services
Most services offered through the Department of Veterans Affairs would continue.

Sources: The Associated Press; Politicothe Congressional Research Service