Heavy Snow Pummels West Central United States, Forces Road Closures

Up to 30 inches of snow was forecast to drop in parts of the Black Hills region of western South Dakota from the storm, the National Weather Service said. “It’s not normal this time of year, but it is not unheard of,” said Cory Martin, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in North Platte, Nebraska. “But this amount of snow for an October storm is on the higher end.” Heavy rain, golf-ball sized hail and winds of 60 to 70 miles per hour were forecast later Friday in Oklahoma along with severe storms in Kansas, the National Weather Service said. The National Weather Service, which is running on a reduced staff because of the federal government shutdown, issued blizzard and severe winter storm warnings across the Upper Plains through Saturday morning. The Black Hills of South Dakota had seen up to 19.5 inches of snow on Friday morning and up to 10 inches had fallen in Wyoming, the National Weather Service said. The heavy snow had caused some power outages in the Casper, Wyoming area. South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard ordered state offices closed in the Black Hills and six counties in the southwestern part of the state and said further closures are possible. Interstate 90 was closed for about a 220 mile stretch from Sturgis, South Dakota, to Sheridan in northeastern Wyoming, according to transportation departments in both states. The National Weather Service was forecasting from 8 to 18 inches of snow in northeast Wyoming and the western South Dakota plains, and 18-30 inches in the highest regions of the Black Hills and up to a foot of snow in Nebraska. (Additional reporting by Heide Brandes; Editing by David Bailey and Diane Craft)

Report: United to open 787 base in Los Angeles

With a population in the region of 311,592,000, the United States is also the third most populous country in the world. Almost 79% of the entire American population lives in urban areas, with New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston and Phoenix constituting the five most populous cities in the country. While the United States is a diverse nation, the majority of Americans are descended from European immigrants; African Americans are the largest minority group, followed by Asian Americans. The United States is a federation of fifty states and one federal district: Washington, District of Colombia. Forty-eight of the fifty states make up the contiguous United States, with Alaska, though still part of the North American continent, separated from the lower forty-eight by Canada. The fiftieth state, and the most recent addition to the union, is Hawaii, a chain of islands located in the Pacific Ocean. The United States also possesses five major unincorporated overseas territories: Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands in the Caribbean, and American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands in the Pacific. Politically, the current two-party system has encouraged the rise of the most extreme candidates, taking rational moderates out of the national conversation and giving too much power to extremists in both parties. Much of the problem is actually institutional in nature: for example, the way the primaries system works means that independent voters in a lot of states are essentially unrepresented in choosing the two candidates who appear on the general election ballot. As a result, each party spits out more extreme candidates than would be elected if every eligible voter chose their top two preferences. A second problem relates to the gerrymandering of electoral districts, on the House side at least. Once you start playing with electoral boundaries for political gain, you are more likely to be challenged by someone who is even more liberal, or conservative, than you are.

The United States: mapping a political system

Following the emotional screening, the audience gave team members and Jorja Fox a standing ovation as they approached the stage to answer questions at a special Q&A session. The movie shows the intricacies and planning involved for such a large-scale mission, but also includes exciting action-packed footage that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats as they watch the rescue unfold. Although it took eight years to secure the law banning circus animals in Bolivia, the film shows that dedication and perseverance can result in a huge triumph for animals. When asked if there was ever any wavering and thought of giving up, Tim Phillips gave a resounding No! There was no way we were walking away from any of the animals once we were there on the ground. Of course endeavors of this magnitude require a great deal of money to finance costs for travel to the circuses, trucks to transport the lions, habitat and cage building costs, etc. Fortunately, Bob Barker funded the operation in Bolivia, but money is needed to rescue circus animals in other countries. It is only through the generosity of donors that this operation can be repeated in both Colombia and Peru, who have also passed laws banning circus animals. To donate for more rescue efforts, checks can be sent to ADI, 6100 Wilshire Blvd, #1150, Los Angeles, CA 90048. Donations can also be made online, where you can learn more about the film and the lion rescue, on the Lion Ark movie website . For those that cannot afford to donate, there are other ways to help. Volunteers are needed to educate people about the cause, hand out literature, volunteer at events, and pressure your congressman. As Jan Creamer says, It doesnt matter if you have already written once, already spoken to them once.

Premiere of ‘Lion Ark’ in United States a huge success (Video)

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“In August, we told you that we believe this amount of flying warrants a west coast 787 base to reliably support our network. We have decided that LAX is the right location for this 787 base.” United’s trans-Pacific Dreamliner routes from the West Coast include flights from LAX to Shanghai and Tokyo Narita and soon-to-launch 787 routes between Seattle and Tokyo, San Francisco and Osaka and San Francisco and Chengdu, China . Also in western United States, United offers a trans-Pacific flight to Tokyo out of its Denver hub. A United Airlines Boeing 787 takes off for Chicago from Houston Intercontinental Airport on Nov. 4, 2012, with more than 200 customers on board. This was the inaugural commercial flight for the United Airlines aircraft. Eric Kayne, Houston Chronicle, via AP Even at 5:54 a.m., there was a festive air at the departure gate for United’s inaugural 787 flight. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY United spokesman Rahsaan Johnson speaks to a group of journalists traveling on United’s inaugural 787 flight. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com United CEO Jeff Smisek, back row center, stands with crew members before the first flight of the airline’s Boeing 787 aircraft. Eric Kayne, Houston Chronicle, via AP Passengers have a little fun before boarding the first Dreamliner to fly paying customers within the United States. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com The chances of getting an upgrade weren’t good for United’s inaugural 787 flight. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com Customers on United’s inaugural 787 flight were treated to snacks before the flight, including special Dreamliner cookies. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com For the first time, a departure board shows United preparing to board paying customers on a 787 flight. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com Thomas Moore, a customer on United’s 787 inaugural flight, also has flown on the world’s first passenger flights of the 747 and the Airbus A380 as evidenced by this self-made plaque. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com United’s Dreamliner at the gate. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY And the boarding for the Dreamliner flight begins … Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY A United gate agent takes a boarding pass from one of the first customers to board the Dreamliner. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY The crew for United’s inaugural Dreamliner flight poses for a photo before departing Houston. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com Capt. Cliff Pittman speaks to the media in Houston before the flight to Chicago. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com A United Airlines Boeing 787 is prepared for take-off. Eric Kayne, Houston Chronicle, via AP Media begin filtering into the economy section ahead of United’s inaugural 787 flight. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com A United Airlines Boeing 787 takes off from Houston Intercontinental Airport. Eric Kayne, Houston Chronicle, via AP A view out the window during United’s first “revenue” Dreamliner flight. Scott Shatzer, for USA TODAY Departure for the Dreamliner from Houston. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY Passenger Gregg Martin poses for a picture in his business-class seat as United CEO Jeff Smisek talks to a TV crew during United’s inaugural Dreamliner flight. Courtesy of Today in the Sky reader Kris Van Cleave United CEO Jeff Smisek, for the record, sat in the bulkhead row of coach. Courtesy of Today in the Sky reader Kris Van Cleave Those on board United’s inaugural Dreamliner flight got a souvenir kit, including a certificate indicating their spot on the historic trip. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com United offered free champagne in all cabins to help celebrate its long-awaited 787 debut. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com The interior of the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Nam Y. Huh, AP A video screen on the back of a seat. Nam Y. Huh, AP Sleeping quarters for the flight crew. Eric Kayne, Houston Chronicle, via AP Passenger Sean Oliver of Washington, D.C., was one of several passengers sporting a special 787 T-shirt for the occasion. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY Breakfast on United’s inaugural flight which departed Houston at 7:20 a.m. featured two meal options for business-class passengers: cereal and fruit or an egg muffin. Courtesy of Chris Sloan, Airchive.com A view of the economy section and Boeing’s cabin design on United’s first revenue Dreamliner flight. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY A throng of media greets United’s inaugural Dreamliner flight as it arrives in Chicago. Scott Shatzer for USA TODAY A United Airlines flight crew monitors instruments in the cockpit of the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner after the plane arrived at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Nam Y. Huh, AP United Airlines’ first Dreamliner flight receives a ceremonial water-cannon salute after landing in Chicago. Nam Y.