Battlefield 3's Physical Warfare DLC Now Available for Everyone

PS3 owners of Battlefield 3 have probably been toying around with these goodies for a while now but the Physical Warfare pack’s items are now available to players of the remaining two platforms, Xbox 360 and PC.

The Physical Warfare pack gives players the Type 88, the DAO-12 shotgun, flechette ammo for said shotgun, and a flash suppressor for the SKS sniper rifle. The DLC was originally a pre-order exclusive, along with the Return to Karkland DLC, but true to DICE’s earlier promise, the Physical Warfare pack was eventually going to become free for everyone at a later date. In other words, this stuff was a timed exclusive and that exclusivity has now worn off.

Of course, by now, you’ve probably leveled up enough to make experimenting with these weapons a moot point with other high level weapons. Still, free stuff is free stuff, right?

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Professor’s Computer Calls It For Obama 99.98% Of Time ; Last Debate A Stir In The 13Th Following The Money Numbers Game Campaign Trails Heading To The Wire Enough Is Enough

Sunday News Lancaster, PA November 2, 2008 | Helen Colwell Adams Computer science professor Dr. J. Brian Adams isn’t taking any chances on his presidential vote simulations.

Last time we reported the outcome of Adams’ model, he was running his numbers 500,000 times to see which candidate was most likely to win, based on state-by-state polls in early October.

His final predictions, based on polls in the last week, involved 50 million tests.

Not bad, considering in the last presidential election in 2004, the total number of votes cast was 126 million.

“By running the model what appears to be an exorbitant number of times, I hoped to account for any possible outcome that might occur even a small number of times,” Adams (no relation) said. see here easton express times

But there doesn’t seem to be much doubt of the outcome, at least according to Adams’ simulation.

“While the number of possible outcomes is very large, the result is always the same,” he said. “Sen. [Barack] Obama receives 270 or more electoral votes 99.98 percent of the time.” Candidates need 270 electoral votes for victory.

Statistically – Adams’ specialty – there’s a 95 percent chance that Obama, the Democrat, will get between 303 and 381 electoral votes.

Republican John McCain, the Arizona senator, still has a path to Electoral College victory, Adams, a Democrat, said, but it’s a narrow one.

“It would require his taking back Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia, Missouri and Pennsylvania, while at the same time not losing any of his current predicted wins,” Adams said. He rates 17 states as “strongly McCain” and five leaning toward McCain.

But “currently, Indiana, Montana, Georgia and even Arizona are no longer sure things in the McCain column,” Adams said.

Obama has 19 states strongly in his column and nine, including Pennsylvania, leaning his way. Missouri is the only toss-up.

Adams, who teaches math and computer science at Franklin & Marshall College, developed his model to try to predict the race – a tricky feat because of the Electoral College factor. He subtracts the margin of error from the lead of the candidates in each state to figure out which states are strongly for a candidate and which are leaning his way. Then he feeds the numbers into a computer, repeatedly, to see what happens on a hypothetical election day.

Poll numbers are a moving target, of course. But while polls can change, he said, “I would be careful of making too much of this possibility. They change, but the amount of change that would be necessary [for the outcome to change] would be amazing.” Political animals might want to check out the state auditor general debate airing at 3 p.m. today on the PCN cable channel (C- SPAN for Pennsylvania government nerds). The League of Women Voters debate, which took place Tuesday, Oct. 28, at the University of Pennsylvania, was the only meeting of incumbent Democrat Jack Wagner, Republican Chet Beiler and Libertarian Betsy Summers.

Beiler, the former county GOP chairman, said Friday that he has been endorsed by the Harrisburg Patriot-News and the Scranton Times- Tribune. “Wherever I’m actually interviewed, they endorse me,” he said wryly.

Beiler’s campaign has started a “Check Chet” program as part of its election-day strategy; poll workers are asked to hand each voter a bright yellow Beiler flier encouraging them to “Check Chet” on the ballot. There’s a video about the system under the “Volunteer” button on Beiler’s Web site,

Wagner, who’s running for a second term, has been touting his own endorsements by the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Easton Express- Times, the Erie Times-News, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, among other papers.

The weirdly quiet 13th state Senate district race began to heat up last week, as write-in candidate Bill Neff challenged Republican Lloyd Smucker to return campaign donations from people connected to companies that “conducted direct business with West Lampeter Township while Smucker served as a township supervisor.” Smucker, who joined the supervisor board in 2005, resigned the post over the summer to concentrate on his campaign to replace the retiring Sen. Gib E. Armstrong.

“During the primary, Lloyd Smucker decimated [Republican] candidate Paul Thibault, accusing him of taking questionable donations from developer Dale High,” Neff said in a press release. Thibault, a former county commissioner, had not been in office for eight years.

“I was confused as to why this was ever wrong,” Neff added. “There was no current working relationship.” Using that line of argument, Smucker “has accepted donations from several individuals associated with companies who were either bidding on projects, engaged in executing projects, seeking work or providing services while Lloyd served as a township supervisor. This would appear to be an obvious conflict of interest,” Neff said.

Jason Ercole, Smucker’s campaign consultant, responded: “While Lloyd continues to talk about his positive record of creating jobs and never raising property taxes, it is clear that Mr. Neff – who lost in the primary but refuses to accept the decision of the voters – is so desperate to win he will say anything.

“Mr. Neff’s claims are untrue and baseless, and a simple review of the records proves this. Mr. Neff is attacking Mr. Smucker for contracts he never voted on, committees he was not a member of and business that was voted on before he even became a supervisor.” Neff cited $6,000 in contributions from members of the family that owns Kinsley Construction, which Neff said has been awarded a $1.1 million contract with West Lampeter. The vote came shortly after Smucker said he was resigning; Smucker did not vote on the contract.

Neff also said Smucker should return $5,000 from High because High Industries has done “various projects in West Lampeter Township,” although it does not appear any occurred during Smucker’s term; $500 from Peter Egan, president of Caldwell, Heckles & Egan, which is working on the new Lampeter-Strasburg YMCA, of which Smucker was capital campaign chairman; $500 from George Rettew, owner of Rettew & Associates, which has provided services to the township; and $1,000 from Marlin Thomas, chairman of Willow Valley Associates, and $500 from Blaise Holzbauer, manager of Willow Valley Resort, because Willow Valley “has ongoing work in West Lampeter whose approvals come before the board of supervisors.” Campaign finance reports – the last reports due before Nov. 4 had a filing deadline of Oct. 24 – are trickling onto the state elections bureau’s Web site.

Oddly, it’s easier to find the 24-hour reports than the full filings.

State law requires that donations of $500 or more received after the last deadline before an election must be reported within 24 hours.

So while Beiler’s and Wagner’s latest formal reports aren’t yet up on the state Web site, the 24-hour reports show that Beiler has collected $9,500 since Oct. 20, while Wagner has taken in $28,500.

Which pales next to Smucker, who has reported $91,000 so far since the close of the last filing cycle on Oct. 20. That figures includes $50,000 from the candidate, $25,000 from Friends of Joe Scarnati (the state Senate president pro tem), $5,000 from Friends of Dom Pileggi (the Senate majority leader) and $5,000 from the Campaign for Pennsylvania’s Future, of Media.

Urdaneta reported $22,763, including $19,763 from himself and $3,000 from the York County Democrats.

Before the deadline, Smucker reported receiving $39,149 in donations from Sept. 15 to Oct. 20, spending $11,568 and having $37,867 in reserve – not counting the late contributions.

Neff, the independent, reported $2,350 in donations from Sept. 15 to Oct. 20 and $11,423 in expenses. He had a deficit of $21,221 at the end of the reporting period.

Urdaneta’s full report wasn’t available Saturday, but campaign manager Alan Silverman said the candidate raised about $50,000, spent about $35,000 and had about $15,000 left as of Oct. 20.

Full reports weren’t online yet for state Rep. Dave Hickernell, R- 98th District, or for his opponent, Democrat Dan Stephenson. But Hickernell reported a $1,000 late contribution from the Exelon PAC.

As the cliche goes, the only poll that matters is on election day – meaning the key to victory is turning out voters.

Democrats are projecting “Democratic turnout of over 70 percent, a Republican turnout in the low 70s and an independent turnout below 60 percent,” county Democratic Chairman Bruce Beardsley said. here easton express times

Republicans are hoping to match the numbers they posted in 2004, when they racked up more than 144,000 votes – and a 70,000-vote plurality – for President George W. Bush.

“That was probably the best of all worlds,” county Republican Chairman Dave Dumeyer said. “I can’t conceive it’s going to be quite that good” this year.

But, he said, “We’re not throwing in the towel.” Beardsley’s prediction: “The margin in the presidential race in Lancaster County will be substantially lower than in 2004 and low enough to prevent a Republican victory statewide.

“Other local races will be closer than ever. Watch for a stunner in the 13th.” John Murphy, the independent candidate in the 16th Congressional District, announced last week that he has been endorsed by independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader.

Earlier, Murphy got the backing of former U.S. senator and presidential candidate Mike Gravel.

Murphy represents Nader in the Pennsylvania Ballot Access Coalition, which works for fairer laws allowing independent and minor-party candidates to be listed on the ballot.

Rep. Hickernell recently listed organizations that have endorsed his bid for a fourth term from the northwestern county district.

FARMER, the political action committee of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, has named Hickernell a “Supporter of Agriculture,” and the National Federation of Independent Business has named him a “Guardian of Small Business.” The Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, the National Rifle Association’s Political Victory Fund, the Pennsylvania Chamber of Commerce & Industry and the Harrisburg Regional Chamber all have endorsed him.

The county Republican committee said last week that voters who need transportation Tuesday can call Republican headquarters for a lift. GOP Express is a driving service offered to supporters of the Republican ticket who are unable to drive or walk to the polls from 7a.m.-8 p.m. Call 392-4165 before or on election day. Rides are offered to any precinct in Lancaster County.

Meanwhile, county Democrats will hold a pre-election rally at 7 p.m. today at Democratic campaign headquarters, 151 N. Queen St., for the presidential ticket, congressional candidate Bruce Slater, Senate nominee Urdaneta, 96th state House district Rep. Mike Sturla and 98th House candidate Stephenson.

Do you know where to vote? New polling places were approved by the county board of elections this election season in Akron, Columbia, East Earl Township, West Lampeter Township, Manheim Township, Lancaster city and West Donegal Township.

The most up-to-date list of polls I’ve found is linked on the county Democrats’ Web site, directions. Or call the county elections board, 299-8293.

Even pundits get tired of campaigns … when they drag on for two years.

Franklin & Marshall College’s Dr. G. Terry Madonna, who has been omnipresent during the interminable presidential slog, confessed Friday that he’s ready for the campaign to be over.

He said the length of the campaign contributes to the ugliness that invariably develops, as it has toward the end of this silly season.

The answer: Shorter campaigns.

“One year is more than enough,” he said.

Amen, brother.

Helen Colwell Adams