Friday, December 31, 2010
To mark the end of 2010 president-style, White House Photographer Pete Souza posted an album of his favorite...
Posted by Richelieu at 12:19 PM
"The inability to pivot in 2010 to a single-minded focus on jobs was a by-product of what one senior aide called "dysfunction" between Emanuel, Summers, and Axelrod. Rahm had always admired Larry, but he was becoming exasperated with his failure to give him a jobs plan he could sell. 'Week after week, Rahm would say, 'Let's explore this' or 'How about that?' and Larry would slow-walk everything,' recalled one senior advisor. 'He basically doesn't believe in the government helping small business'."
"The most popular provision of Dodd-Frank almost didn't happen. In late 2009 Elizabeth Warren learned that a proposed bureau of consumer financial protection had been dropped from the bill. She went to the White House to object, and the bureau, to the dismay of predatory lenders, was reinstated."
"An old friend compared him [Clinton] to a big puppy dog who just needed some attention to be happy and helpful."
"Clinton felt better disposed toward his 1992 opponent, George H.W. Bush... one senior aide described Bush as a 'father figure' to Clinton, who never knew his natural father..."
Posted by Richelieu at 1:38 AM
Oprah laid bare: Chat show queen goes make-up free for cameras - and even lets them film her in the bath
By JODY THOMPSON
Last updated at 1:23 PM on 30th December 2010
Last updated at 1:23 PM on 30th December 2010
She's become a billionaire off the back of persuading her celebrity guests to bare all - now Oprah Winfrey has let the cameras into her life for an uncensored view of her life behind closed doors.
Appearing without make-up and even in the bath, the chat show queen is even caught when she is 'so drugged' on painkillers after an operation, by her own admission, she 'couldn't even stand up.'
Oprah, 56, explained that she was on 'percocet and valium' after having a colonoscopy, and only stumbled into the meeting she never usually attends because she was so out of it.
Scroll down to watch video...
Au naturel: Oprah Winfrey allows her camera crew to film her first thing in the morning minus her usual glam make-up
Tub love: Oprah even allows the documentary crew to film her as she takes a bath
Glam: Oprah with partner Stedman Graham earlier this month
In scenes that might surprise some fans, she says: 'The drugs are wonderful - it's a sedation vacation. You're somewhat in, somewhat out.'
The star explained she decided to let the cameras go in behind the scenes for the first time to mark the 25th - and last - season of her chat show, which starts on 1 January on her own new television station, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
She called it 'an uncensored look into the private world of our show' run by the 'hardest working people in television - in showiness, in fact.'
Oprah adds: 'Documentary film crews will capture the real life drama of ending a show that's really been our lives.'
It shows her first thing in the morning being chauffeured away from her home in Chicago to a nearby park to go running with her spaniel Sadie.
Of the launch of her new network OWN and ending her chat show, she said: 'It feels very electrifying, it feels very exciting. It's going to be bittersweet of course but it's going to be good.'
She also jokes of the team that work on her show: 'They really are the best. They're my family and like every family....well, you know.'
'Drug vacation': The star said the painkillers she had to take after a colonoscopy left her so out of it she 'couldn't even stand up'
Rehearsals: The cameras follow Oprah and her team make the 25th - and final - season of her chat show
Tired: Oprah will be hoping the behind-the-scenes show which launches her new cable channel OWN won't be yawn-inducing
The richest self-made woman in America and the world's first black billionaire, it's the first time Oprah has ever turned the cameras on herself in such a way.
The show premieres on January 1 on OWN, formerly the Discovery Health Network. It broadcasts to a potential 85 million homes in the U.S.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1342753/Oprah-laid-bare-Chat-queen-goes-make-free-cameras--lets-film-bath.html#ixzz19fTRoZjz
Posted by Richelieu at 1:24 AM
Posted by Richelieu at 1:19 AM
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
LONDON, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- An opera inspired by the life of former South African first lady Winnie Mandela is to open at the State Theatre in Pretoria this April, the BBC said.
Believed to be the first opera fully composed and orchestrated in the country, the work about the anti-apartheid activist will feature lyrics in English and Xhosa.
Featuring a 60-piece orchestra performing western and traditional African music, the opera by composer and musician Bongani Ndodana-Breen and filmmaker Warren Wilensky is to open April 28, the BBC said.
Posted by Richelieu at 5:35 PM
29 December 10 13:28 ET
The leader of the South African Communist Party has accused poultry manufacturers of racism.
Blade Nzimande said that the poultry industry was selling "rotten" meat to black people.
He said chicken past its best-before date was being recycled - thawed, washed and injected with flavouring - then sold to shops in black townships.
A spokesman for the poultry industry admitted the practice takes place, but said it was both safe and legal.
The meat is removed from major chains of supermarkets and is re-distributed to spaza shops - smaller, family-run shops which serve black communities - and independent wholesalers.
"I can tell you now that more than 80% of ordinary black South Africans, they get their food from the spaza shops which means that you are actually selling rotten meat to black people," Blade Nzimande said.
"We just find this deeply offensive and racist, frankly."
A spokesman for the poultry industry agreed that the process of recycling chicken did take place, but said it was legal and that all manufacturers guaranteed the safety of their products.
"There's nothing racist about this process," Kevin Lovell told the BBC's Martin Plaut.
He added that the chickens were tested and certified by the producers before being sent out again and that these standards were actually higher than those required by the department of health.
But he also accepted that re-worked chicken did not go on sale in major supermarkets, which served the country's wealthier suburbs.
According to the South African Press Assocation, Mr Nzimande has called for an enquiry into the practice.
Posted by Richelieu at 5:34 PM
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
AP – Immacula Antenor holds a photo her son, Jonas Antenor Tuesday Dec. 28, 2010 in Miami. Jonas Angtenor, …
Video:5 dead in apparent carbon monoxide poisoning
By JENNIFER KAY, Associated Press – 41 mins ago
MIAMI – Five young men who died of carbon monoxide poisoning in a South Florida motel room were constant companions who acted like brothers and even went shoe shopping together before Christmas so they all would have the same pair, relatives said Tuesday.
They were celebrating a birthday Sunday night when they were overcome by carbon monoxide from a car they left running in a garage under their Hialeah motel room, police said. The teens' friends told police that the car was having engine trouble, and they had probably left it running so that they wouldn't get stuck with a car that wouldn't start, police spokesman Carl Zogby said.
Authorities identified the dead as Juchen C. Martial, 19; Peterson Nazon, 17; Jonas Antenor, 17; Jean Pierre Ferdinand, 16; and Evans Charles, 19. All lived within blocks of each other in Miami's Little Haiti neighborhood.
The group rented the room Sunday around 9 p.m. to celebrate Martial's 19th birthday.
"On the 5 o'clock news I saw the same car his friend drove. I could not believe it," Immacula Nazon said Tuesday.
Martial's family had celebrated his birthday on Christmas Day and had gone to church on Sunday, and they didn't know he was going out later that evening, said his aunt, Magalie Martial.
Juchen Martial was the oldest grandchild in a close-knit, traditional Haitian family, she said. He was finishing high school and working part-time at a Wendy's, but he still was expected to meet a curfew every night.
The other teens found at the motel weren't people they had seen at their home before, she said.
Martial's grandmother was shocked to find he wasn't home when she returned from work late Sunday. When she called him, he told her, "I went to a little party. I'll be right back," Magalie Martial said.
They didn't hear from him again.
"Juchen and a bunch of friends died in a hotel, which we did not know about," Magalie Martial said. "That's what hurts the family."
Nazon's family said they had seen one of the teens driving the car just before Christmas. When the car showed up in news reports after the five bodies were found Monday, Nazon's mother knew something was wrong. She had been calling her youngest child's phone all morning, but he never answered.
Immacula Antenor came to the Nazons' home to share their grief, but she found it hard to talk about her son, Jonas. She softly described the group as "good boys," and both women shrugged at the idea of them throwing a party in a hotel room.
Nazon and Antenor had not told their mothers much about their plans, except to ask to borrow some cash. Martial was "a sweet boy, not a bad boy," and there was no reason to worry, said Nazon's mother, also named Immacula.
"Five people came to celebrate a birthday," she said. "Now they're victims."
The medical examiner determined Tuesday that the teens died from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning, police said.
A maid called authorities Monday after looking through a window and seeing that the young men were unconscious.
In a 911 call, the maid described a strong smell of gasoline — "It's a terrible stench," she said. The maid told the emergency dispatcher in Spanish that she opened the door, called out "hello" and got no response.
"They're all there, and they don't respond," she said. "They're sprawled on the floor. I haven't wanted to touch them. I'm scared."
The group's car was found running in a closed garage underneath the room. A door to a staircase up to the room had been left open, and high levels of carbon monoxide were found inside, Zogby said.
No drugs or alcohol were found in the room, and there was no sign of foul play. Two of the teens were found lying on the bed, and the others were seated on the floor with bags of fast food on their outstretched legs, Zogby said. If they had been watching the coin-operated television, the minutes had run out by the time authorities found them.
"They looked like they were relaxing," he said.
The teens went shoe shopping together over the Christmas weekend so each would have the same pair, said Nazon's sister, 22-year-old Patricia.
She said she warned her brother that if one of the group got into trouble, they all would, because they were always together.
"He didn't listen to me. Now he probably thinks, I should have listened to my sister and stayed home," she said.
"There are other ways to celebrate your birthday. If they hadn't gone to the hotel they'd still be alive. Just stay home and get a cake, you know."
Posted by Richelieu at 9:33 PM