January 30th, 2012
12:55 AM ET

Park service to crack down on Occupy DC camps

The National Park Service plans to crack down Monday on what it calls "sleeping activity" at two longstanding camps established by Occupy DC demonstrators in the nation's capital.

The service notified protesters on Friday that they "may be subject to arrest and their property subject to seizure as evidence" if there are evident "camping violations" by around noon Monday.

The notice for those in McPherson Square and nearby Freedom Plaza said that to comply with the federal agency's camping regulations, demonstrators must remove all camping material from the sites and leave one side of all temporary structures open at all times. Authorities describe the purpose of the order as necessary to ensure public health and safety.

The demonstrators say they will defend their sites.

"Participants of Occupy DC at McPherson Square, both sleeping members and non-sleeping members, will defend the public space we have used as our center for activism on this Monday, January 30th," the group's website said. "Occupy DC will peacefully resist this politically motivated attempt to suppress the free speech of the disenfranchised 99%."

On Sunday, a small group of protesters met for about three hours under the statue of Civil War hero Maj. Gen. James McPherson, which is in the middle of the park, to discuss how to respond.

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Filed under: Occupy Wall Street • U.S.
Japan's population to shrink nearly a third by 2060, government estimate says
Japan's population will continue to drop as the graying nation's aging accelerates and the birthrate stays low.
January 30th, 2012
12:07 AM ET

Japan's population to shrink nearly a third by 2060, government estimate says

Japan's population will shrink by a staggering 30% by 2060, according to a new estimate by the country's government.

The current population will shrink from the current level of 128 million to 86.74 million, as the graying nation's aging accelerates and the birthrate continues to stay low.

The Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare's research organization released the data on Monday. The group, called the National Institute of Population and Social Security Research, provides a 50-year demographic forecast every five years.

The institute also projects that people age 65 and older will account for 39.9% of the total population in 2060. In 2010, the elderly accounted for 23% of the population.

The country's average life expectancy dipped in 2011 after the March earthquake and tsunami, which killed approximately 19,000 people.

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Filed under: Japan • World
January 30th, 2012
12:03 AM ET

Former John Edwards aide faces contempt hearing

Andrew Young, a former aide to one-time presidential candidate John Edwards, is scheduled to be back in court Monday to answer allegations that he, along with his wife and attorneys, violated a protective order sealing information in a civil lawsuit filed by Edwards' former mistress, Rielle Hunter.

Hunter filed a motion in Edwards' home state of North Carolina requiring the Youngs and their attorneys to state why they should not be held in criminal contempt of court for allegedly violating the protective order filed in November 2010 by state Superior Court Judge Carl Fox.

Hunter alleges the accused parties provided investigators in a federal corruption probe with documents - including sealed depositions - that were covered under the order. The Youngs' attorneys have said they were following orders from a federal judge.

Superior Court Judge Michael R. Morgan will preside over the contempt matter in Orange County because Fox recused himself from the contempt hearing.

Morgan will determine whether the Youngs and their attorneys should be found in contempt of court.

If convicted, Young and the others could face punishments including 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

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Filed under: Justice • Politics • U.S.
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