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President Obama’s health care law ruled unconstitutional

A federal judge declared the foundation of President Barack Obama’s health care law unconstitutional Monday, ruling that the government cannot require Americans to purchase insurance. The case is expected to end up at the Supreme Court.

In his order, U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson said he will allow the law to remain in effect while appeals are heard, meaning there is unlikely to be any immediate impact on other provisions that have already taken effect. The insurance coverage mandate is not scheduled to begin until 2014.

Geminid meteor shower 2010

The Geminid meteor shower for 2010 peaks overnight Monday with what promises to be a spectacular show for sky watchers who find themselves under clear, dark skies with an unobstructed view of the horizon.

By some estimates, the Geminid meteor shower – so named because they appear to the observer to be emanating from the constellation Gemini – could yield up to 120 shooting stars an hour for those watching under ideal viewing conditions between midnight and dawn Tuesday.

Ukraine to open Chernobyl area to tourists in 2011

Ukraine – Want a better understanding of the world’s worst nuclear disaster? Come tour the Chernobyl nuclear power plant.

Beginning next year, Ukraine plans to open up the sealed zone around the Chernobyl reactor to visitors who wish to learn more about the tragedy that occurred nearly a quarter of a century ago, the Emergency Situations Ministry said Monday.

Chernobyl’s reactor No. 4 exploded on April 26, 1986, spewing radiation over a large swath of northern Europe. Hundreds of thousands of people were resettled from areas contaminated with radiation fallout in Ukraine, Belarus and Russia. Related health problems still persist.