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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 17, 1997, New Braunfels, Texas HeraldZeitung o Friday October 5A World mourns loss of bestselling author James Michener Associated Press Writer AUSTIN Literary and humanitarian admirers are offering great praise for renowned author James A Michcner The prolific writer and generous donor to the arts and education died Thursday at his home of kidney failure He was 90 Jim Michener was Americas said Harold Evans president and publisher of the Random House Trade Publishing Group He enlightened millions of people around the globe with the fruits of his labor during his stunning 50year writing I career We will miss Michener guided millions of readers from the South Pacific to the fringes of space in more than 40 giant bestselling novels His death came less than a week after he ordered doctors to disconnect him from life sustaining dialysis treatments His loss will be great not only to the literary scene but to the many colleges he has nurtured through the years and the many thousands of people who feel he is their said longtime friend and assistant John Kings Micheners tjeralded writing career began in his midlife with Tales of the South The book written during his tour of duty with the Navy in World War II won the Pulitzer Prize in 1948 and was the basis for South a longrunning Broadway musical and later a motion picture Michener then spent decades wandering the globe from Japan and Korea to Hungary Hawaii Afghanistan Spain South Africa Colorado Israel Chesapeake Bay Poland Texas Alaska and the Caribbean He wrote historicalgeographic blockbusters living in and absorbing the culture of the places of which he wrote His books argued for universal ideals religious and racial tolerance hard work and self reliance Im not a Michener once said of his writing There are a whole lot of things Im not good at Im not hard in dialogue I dont have that wonderful crispness I dont think Im good at psychology But what I can do is put a good narrative together and hold the readers Judge Public access should be determined by rule AUSTIN AP Public access to court administrative records including judges telephone calls should be determined by the Texas Supreme Court with advice from a panel with a majority of judges Chief Justice Thomas Phillips says As you know many believe that the current debate over access to court operational records arose more from political than legal Philips said in a letter to a state senator Regardless of what prompted the issue however we recognize our obligation to develop legitimate processes to enhance open Phillips a Republican wrote to Sen Jeff Wentworth RSan Antonio Phillips said he would ask the 22 member Texas Judicial Council to begin looking into the matter Oct 30 Phillips is chairman of the council which includes 12 judges four lawmakers three people appointed because they are lawyers and three nonlawyers News Briefs Giuliani challenges lineHem veto WASHINGTON AP New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani challenged the constitutionality of the presidential lineitem veto on Thursday in a federal lawsuit seeking to keep New York from Medicaid funds President Clintons August veto unfairly targets the city and the state of New Giuliani said The suit was filed in District Court here Even as the law came under fresh legal challenge Clinton used it yet again on Thursday striking an million fiveyear benefits provision for federal workers from a Treasury Department spending bill Traveling in South America Clinton called the provision hastily conceived and wasteful The first president to have the power Clinton has now exercised the lineitem veto 55 times in three months The 1996 law enables him to cancel specific projects and programs or from spending bills and from certain tax bills Trade dispute enters 11th hour WASHINGTON AP A long simmering trade dispute escalated into a tense standoff as the United States made ports off limits to Japanese cargo ships beginning Friday unless llthhour negotiations are successful The Federal Maritime Commission voted Thursday to direct the Coast Guard to impose the ban on entry and to have the Customs Service detain any Japanese ships already in ports However Commission Chairman Howard Creel said the orders would not be carried out until late Friday to give negotiators from both countries more time to resolve the dispute The commission acted after receiving word from Japanese shipping companies they did not plan to pay an estimated million in fines it had levied The fines the first trade sanctions levied against Japan in a decade were imposed after the two couhjries were unable to reach a deal toguarantee freer access by American shipping companies to Japanese ports A ban on Japanese ships entering harbors would have an enormous impact on trade between the worlds two biggest economies affecting billions of dollars worth of productsgoing both ways Japanese ships also transport goods on their return voyages to Japan Woman gives birth after frozen egg implants ATLANTA AP In what may be the first such case in the United States a Georgia woman gave birth after being implanted with eggs that From all angles HeraldZeitung photo by Michael Darnall Glen Holloway tries to catch a big one at the Comal River Wednesday afternoon He had a little luck by catching a 3Inch fish earlier Texas suit against tobacco industry delayed again AUSTIN AP The latest delay of Texas billion lawsuit against the tobacco industry wont affect the states strategy a spokesman for state Attorney General Dan Morales says Jury selection was scheduled for Oct 27 in Texarkana in the lawsuit against eight tobacco companies and three trade groups to recover money the state says has been spent on Medicaid for treating tobaccorelated illnesses But District Judge David Folsom of Texarkana ordered a postponement on Thursday because of personal health He didnt elaborate but The Dallas Morning News reported today that Folsom told attorneys he has prostate cancer and needs time to schedule treatments A call Thursday to Folsoms court was not returned As far as the merits of the case or anything else it has no impact on our said Ward Tisdale a spokesman for the attorney generals office It has no impact on our strategy or anything else We are ready to Tisdale said The judge said he plans to remain in charge of the massive case and would continue to handle paperwork and issue pretrial rulings according to lawyers on both sides had been frozen Up to now doctors have been able to produce pregnancies from frozen embryos that is eggs fertilized with sperm and then frozen but eggs alone were considered too fragile to freeze The latest feat which has been t achieved only spbradicaHy elsewhere around the world could give women some new reproductive options and sidestep some of the ethical objections to testtube fertilization This stretches the reproductive field as far as you can envision it right said Dr Joe Massey co founder of Reproductive Biology Associates the Atlanta clinic that accomplished the feat The same clinic in 1993 produced the first baby using sperm injected directly into a womans egg Gore praises TV show Ellen BEVERLY HILLS Calif AP Vice President Al Gore praised Hollywood on Thursday for producing the openly lesbian TV character saying she forced Americans to look at sexual orientation in a more open His remarks were reminiscent of Vice President Dan Quayle who denounced TV character Murphy Brown for having a child out of wedlock But Gore sided with the entertainment industry on the more recent popculture controversy The title character in ABCs sitcom Ellen told her friends and family last season that she was gay The stars show comedian Ellen DeGeneres made her homosexuality public about the same time The episode in which Ellen revealed her lesbianism was highly rated although the network was hit with some protests This month DeGeneres angrily objected to ABCs decision to place a warning advisory on an episode in which her character pal ieech to the Holly wood Radio and Television Society Gore singled out TV shows and characters for their contribution to society Seniors state join to combat telemarketing fraud AUSTIN AP Senior citizens and state officials are launching a new effort to combat fraudulent telemarketers with Attorney General Dan Morales calling the crime one of the most alarming trends nationwide against the elderly Morales and volunteers from senior citizen groups began making calls to warn elderly Texans about the threat and give them tips on how to recognize scams and resist hard sell pitches In response the group Seniors Against FraudTexas on Thursday launched Operation Fight Back which used a reverse boiler room at an Austin senior center to make warning calls to potential victims Their message was simple beware you may be a fraud target The coalition Morales and Southwestern Bell offered several suggestions to senior citizens Just say no thanks and hang up Dont give credit card numbers or bank account information over the phone to any business you havent previously determined to be legitimate Ask callers to mail information about the product or service Ignore now or never deals Sharp cleared of retaliation charges AUSTIN AP A federal jury cleared Comptroller John Sharp and Whitehead of allegations that they fired a state employee in retaliation for publicly criticizing them After four hours of deliberation jurors in District Court dismissed the allegations Whitehead said the suit was filed to cast a shadow on her tenure as state treasurer and to embarrass Sharp who is a Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor Graphic designer Stephen Bright 39 claimed a letter he wrote to several Texas newspapers cost him his job and that the firing violated his right to free speech Bright said he received a fair trial and was starting to believe after hearing all the testimony that state officials didnt act maliciously The Deals are Better 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