OBAMA OUTLINES IMMIGRATION REFORM PROPOSALS: President Obama yesterday (January 29th) outlined his proposals for immigration reform, as he praised a bipartisan Senate plan announced a day earlier that's similar, but left key details unresolved. Both
proposals contain a path to citizenship for people now in the country illegally, call for tighter security at the borders, crack down on businesses that hire illegal immigrants, and streamline the legal immigration system. Even as he praised the Senate proposal, however, Obama warned that the debate would be difficult, and pledged to send his own legislation to Capitol Hill if lawmakers don't act quickly. One of the key differences between the two plans is that the senators' proposal would make a path to citizenship contingent on first securing the borders and improving the tracking of people in the
seek visas under the same rules that govern other family immigration.
pyrotechnics display is believed to have started the fire by igniting flammable insulating foam on the ceiling knowingly used flares meant for outdoor use because they were cheaper. Inspector Marcelo Arigony, whose cousin died in the fire, said the outdoor flares cost just $1.25 each, while an indoor flare cost $35. Conditions in the Kiss nightclub contributed to the high death toll, including a malfunctioning fire extinguisher, the lack of either an alarm or a
sprinkler system, being packed over capacity with people, and the availability of only one working exit.
JUDGE OKAYS $4 BILLION CRIMINAL SETTLEMENT IN BP
lying to Congress about the size of the spill, and pay a record $4 billion in penalties. While that decision closes the criminal case, the federal government still has civil claims against BP, and the company could have to pay billions more for environmental damage from the spill. A series of investigations have blamed the disaster on time-saving, cost-cutting decisions by BP and its partners on the offshore well.
SENATE APPROVES KERRY AS SECRETARY OF STATE: The Senate approved John Kerry, one of their own, yesterday (January 29th) to be President Obama's new secretary of state
on a 94-3 vote, replacing Hillary Clinton, whose last day will be Friday. Those voting against Kerry, the Democratic senior senator from
the past four years. The 69-year-old Kerry, a decorated Vietnam War veteran, served in the Senate for 28 years, and was the Democrats' presidential nominee in 2004. He's expected to be sworn in this week.
allegedly shot and killed a 22-year-old Cuban immigrant who mistakenly pulled into his driveway because of incorrect
SOLDIER WHO LOST
Brendan Marrocco of
POLL: TWO-THIRDS OF AMERICANS SUPPORT WOMEN IN COMBAT: A poll conducted after Defense Secretary Leon Panetta lifted a longtime ban on women serving in front-line combat units last Thursday (January 24th) found that two-thirds of Americans support
the decision. Sixty-six percent of those surveyed by the
APPLE TRADEMARKS DESIGN OF ITS STORES: Apple has trademarked the minimalist design and layout of its stores, with the description of the trademarks granted including, quote, "a clear glass storefront surrounded by a paneled facade" and an "oblong table with stools . . . set below video screens flush mounted on the back wall." The company had originally filed its request for this type of trademark protection on the interiors of its stores -- known as "trade dress" -- in May 2010, and it was just granted on January 22nd. In 2003,
Apple was granted a design patent on the floating glass staircases featured in many of its retail stores.
CHECK IT OUT:
Americans get sick from food poisoning each year -- roughly one in six of us -- and 3,000 of those people die. About one in five of the illnesses are linked to leafy green vegetables, more than any other type of food, and nearly half were attributed to produce in general, adding in fruits and other vegetables. However, the CDC emphasized that the report shouldn't be seen as discouraging people from eating fruits and vegetables, instead they repeated the frequent
advice to wash those foods or cook them thoroughly before eating.
books make it illegal for couples to live together without getting married. However, one of them, Virginia, may soon be changing that, as state officials are considering a bill that would rescind the law. The Washington Post reports that Virginia's law, which dates to the 1800s, states that it's illegal for, quote, "any persons, not married to each other, [to] lewdly and
lasciviously associate and cohabit together," although it hasn't been enforced for decades.
he'll retire after the Super Bowl, declined to directly address the charge in any detail Tuesday. He said, "I've been in this business 17 years, and nobody has ever got up with me every morning and trained with me. Every test I've ever took in the NFL -- there's never been a question of if I ever even thought about using anything. So to even entertain stupidity like that..."
NEW DOPING ACCUSATIONS AGAINST A-ROD: Alex Rodriguez is in the middle of a doping investigation once again, after a
29th) that the New York Yankees third-baseman and baseball's highest-paid star was among several players listed in the records of a
Rodriguez, who is out for at least the first half of the season with a hip injury, denied
the charges, with a publicist releasing a statement that said, "The news report about a purported relationship between Alex Rodriguez and Anthony Bosch are not true. He was not Mr. Bosch's patient, he was never treated by him and he was never advised by him. The purported documents referenced in the story -- at least as they relate to Alex Rodriguez -- are not legitimate." Major League Baseball said they are investigating. After denying doping for years, A-Rod admitted in 2009 that he had used performance-enhancing drugs from 2001
to 2003, after a Sports Illustrated report said he'd tested positive for two steroids in
TOOL MEMBER REPORTEDLY INJURED IN SCOOTER CRASH: An unidentified
member of Tool recently crashed his Vespa scooter on an icy road, suffering serious injuries and delaying work on the music for the band's long-awaited next album. According to Loudwire, the musician sustained several broken ribs and a dislocated shoulder in the
crash, forcing the band to push back writing sessions for the band's follow-up to 2006's 10,000 Days.
The incident was described in detail in a post at the band's website earlier this
week, with the webmaster writing, "Because of the physical nature of the
musical instrument involved, 9 DAYS of jamming were lost, although I'm happy to
report that the person involved is recovering nicely, so much so, in fact, that
writing sessions resumed last Monday (January 21), despite it being a holiday
SICK PUPPIES HAVE MORE
TOURING, EVEN ALBUM POSSIBLE, SAYS EX-KORN GUITARIST: With Korn and ex-guitarist Brian "Head" Welch reuniting for four shows this spring and summer -- two in Germany, one in the U.S. and one in England -- the next question is whether a full tour or a new album together is possible. Welch told Rolling Stone, "We're going slow. We're hanging out when I've got time, but I've got my album out, and they're busy doing their stuff. But I'd say anything is possible right now."
Welch added, "For people to see this, I think it's just really uplifting. I never thought it would happen, and I'm not sure they did either. The fans just love it, because a lot of the fans back in the day were like, suicidal, and from broken homes and abuse. They looked up to us like their family. And to see their family split up was hard on them. To get it put back together, there is a joy around the people who care about it."
EARLY EDDIE VEDDER DEMOS SURFACE ONLINE: A collection of early songs demoed by
singer Eddie Vedder before he got the call to join Pearl Jam has surfaced online thanks to Antiquiet. The 13-track collection contains material recorded between 1988 and 1989. Some of the songs feature Vedder performing by himself, while others are recorded with Bad Radio, the band that Vedder was playing with in San Diego before heading to Seattle to join the group that was first called Mookie Blaylock and eventually turned into Pearl Jam.
CHECK IT OUT: Listen to Eddie Vedder's rare early demos at http://www.antiquiet.com/news/2013/01/eddie-vedder-1989-demos/
BARBARA WALTERS RELEASED FROM HOSPITAL: Barbara Walters has been released from the hospital after recovering from a nasty fall over inauguration weekend and
then a case of chicken pox.
'ENTOURAGE' MOVIE OFFICIALLY A GO: Warner Bros. has given the go ahead to Entourage creator Doug Ellin to direct a movie sequel to the hit HBO series. The television show ran for eight seasons but ended in 2011.
MANTI TE'O'S PRANKSTER IS GAY: Dr. Phil appeared on Today to offer a glimpse of his recent interview with the man behind Manti Te'o's dead girlfriend hoax, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo. According to Phil, Ronaiah said that he had real feelings for Te'o while pretending to be a girl
and then admitted to being gay. Apparently Ronaiah later backtracked on his admission and said he was confused.
anecdotes and life lessons, the book will be a unique and engaging experience from one of today's most talented and beloved stars"
commemorate the departing sitcom 30 Rock with an ice cream flavor inspired by the show. The flavor was originally slated to hit stores in the spring but has been moved up to coincide with the show's series finale which airs this week.
'MALCOLM IN THE MIDDLE' STARS REUNITING: Bryan Cranston is reuniting with his Malcolm in the Middle co-star Jane Kaczmarek on Breaking Bad. Jane tweeted, "Yes,
it's true... I will indeed be on Breaking Bad. Can't wait for you all to see it. Congrats to Bryan Cranston for his win (at the Screen Actors Guild Awards)"
NBC ORDERS SEQUEL TO '
drama pilot Wonderland. The show is set in a modern-day Wonderland and centers on
JASON LONDON ARRESTED IN ARIZONA: Dazed and Confused actor Jason London was arrested in Scottsdale, Arizona on Sunday morning after being beaten to a pulp outside of a bar where allegedly assaulted a bouncer. On his way to the station, Jason reportedly cursed out the officers and pooped his pants out of revenge.
of naked people including shots of Margera trying to hydrate himself by drinking his own urine.
CRISS ANGEL OFFERING REWARD FOR STOLEN DOG: Magician Criss Angel is offering a reward of $5,000 for the return of his stolen Yorkshire Terrier. The dog was stolen from a
fun with the paparazzi as they were leaving Madeo restaurant in
SCANDALOUS ITEMS FOUND IN FORMER ‘PENTHOUSE’ FOUNDER’S STORGAE UNIT: Hedge funder Jeremy Frommer hit the jackpot when he decided to buy up some unclaimed storage lockers in
According Page Six, the space housed unpublished nude photos of Madonna, Lauren Hutton, and a young Arnold Schwarzenegger allegedly engaged in a sex act. Jeremy also found correspondence between Guccione and people like Dick Cheney, the Unabomber, and a woman who claimed to be Fidel Castro's lover. There were also personal files detailing the
publisher's decision to print the nude photos of Vanessa Williams which ended up costing her the Miss America crown.
NOT WATCHING THE GAME? ACTIVITIES THAT
1) Go to the theater. Broadway shows tend to be less expensive on Super Bowl night. For example, ticket prices to Wicked's 7 p.m. performance in New York City on Feb. 3 start at $79 through Stub Hub compared to $256 for the following Sunday night. (Cheaper tickets are available for other days of the week.) But-- prices may drop as game day draws nigh.
2) Hit the slopes. We don't have exact figures, but if the past is any guide, Super Bowl Sunday is prime time for skiing. In 2011 people who purchased lift tickets for this day through Liftopia saved an average of 40 percent compared to the average savings of 32 percent for mid-week lift tickets. Keep tabs on such deals as you scout around for Super Bowl alternatives. Obviously, the offers vary by location and in an unusual twist may also be determined by the fate of competing teams. For instance, Feb. 3 lift ticket prices at
3) Take-out from the nearest chain restaurant. In previous years several chain establishments' Super Bowl alternative has involved offering tasty treats for cheap. Papa John's, for example, gave out $45 gift cards every 45 seconds and sold large pizzas for $10 each during Super Bowl 2011. Many national restaurant chains have also used game day to promote a new product. In 2011 Pizza Hut publicized the "Big Dipper": $12 for 24 strips of pizza and four cups of tomato sauce for dipping.
4) Eat local. Super Bowl alternatives also include alternatives to fast food, including good deals at neighborhood joints. At Carnivale in
$15 gift certificate during this year's Super Bowl weekend. This is a smart idea considering that Super Bowl Sunday tends to be one of the least busy nights of the year for sit-down restaurants. During game time Open Table -- the restaurant reservation site -- fills about half the seats of a typical Sunday night. So use the day as an opportunity to dine somewhere you haven't been able to get into.
5) Fly (almost) anywhere. Airfare for flights in early February tend to be inexpensive, making a cheap getaway the perfect Super Bowl alternative -- unless you're eyeing Las Vegas (the partying capital of the Super Bowl) or New Orleans (the location of the game itself). Last year Jet Blue priced all drinks -- including beer, wine and spirits -- at $1 and gave out free Snyder's Buffalo Wing Pretzels on flights scheduled during the game. Bonus: Flying as a Super
Bowl alternative means fewer passengers and more space to spread out.
ELEVEN BIZARRE FACEBOOK APPS (Mashable):
1) "God Wants You to Know." Expect Facebook messages from God, in the form of small motivations and encouragement. However, it doesn't help that "God's word" is sandwiched between slots ads. Users can also request prayers from others using the app and give prayers to those asking for support.
2) "Pot Farm." This game is essentially FarmVille on marijuana. Though it's intended for ages 21 and up, the game's description invites users to be part of "the other 'green' movement." The goal is to grow cash crops -- with names like "Grandaddy Purple," "Sour Diesel" and "Alaska Thunderfudk" -- and sell your "stash" for gold coins.
3) "Hemp Tycoon." If Pot Farm isn't your cup of herbal tea, check out a similar game called Hemp Tycoon. Users control a hemp leaf character with legs. The goal is to select exotic seeds, grow different plants and produce products like hemp tea and hemp ice cream. You can even send them as gifts to your Facebook friends.
4) "myPill." This app features a daily alarm that reminds users to take their birth control pills.
5) "Cat StickerZ." Cat lovers can collect and trade stickers, and vote on "the web's most fabulous cats."
6) "Amateur Surgeon." This Adult Swim game challenges users to help Alan Probe, founder of the "Bleed Everywhere" chain of illegal hospitals. The goal is to help Probe set up the place and staff whoever is available -- a user doesn't actually need to be qualified on any medical level. And yes, it's as sketchy as it sounds.
7) "Foldify." This iPad-only app allows users to turn their Facebook friends (and more) into 3D figures. Draw your friends or use existing photos as guides, then share with other users or print and actually fold the figures.
8) "Love Percentage." The concept is simple: a generator tells you exactly how much you're in love today. However, there is no explanation for what this percentage took into consideration. Judging by the comments on this app, most Facebook users are in love somewhere around 90% on any given day.
9) "How Attractive?" Another generator app, How Attractive? provides users with a daily percentage of how attractive they are. Similar to the love app, it's a mystery where the number actually originates. Interestingly, more than 10,000 people are actually using the app, and nearly 50,000 people have liked it.
10) "Pass A Joint." This explanation says it all. Earn rewards for each joint you roll or smoke. Your actions unlock new types of joints for you and your friends. You can also refine your skill in joint-rolling, if you desire.
11) "Status Shuffle." At a loss for something funny or profound to say on Facebook? This app will generate messages for you. It's filled with all of the face-palming quotes and jokes you'd normally see on your news feed.
STUDY SAYS AMERICANS
good" according to a new study. For the study, scientists prompted a group of Stanford students to think about either independence or interdependence and then gave them a difficult word puzzle to solve. Later, they gave the participants a physical challenge. They found that "chronically independent European Americans" fared much worse when primed to think about interdependence while completeing the tasks. For the Asian-American students,
both the indepedence-loving American culture and the more communally based East-Asian culture, meant that they found thinking about either value set equally motivating. The study was published in Psychological Science. (PopSci)
FEMALE NAMES THAT
extinct soon are: Blanch, Myrtle, Agatha, Gertrude, and Marge. (StyleBlazer)
GOING ON VACATION IS GOOD FOR YOUR HEALTH: New research from British tour operator Kuoni, and the UK's largest healthcare charity, Nuffield Health, says you should take all of your vacation days each year - for you health. The study compared key health markers
of people who went on vacation versus those who did not take vacation. It was found that the average blood pressure of those on vacation dropped by six-percent, while those who did not take vacation experience a blood pressure increase of two-percent over the same period. The sleep quality of vacationers improved by 17-percent while that of non-vacationers worsened by 14-percent. The study also found that vacationers recover from stress faster, improving
their scores on a stress-resiliance test by 29-percent, while non-vacations saw a 71-percent drop in their stress-resiliance test scores. (Daily Mail)
SOME SUPER BOWL SURVEY STATS: Century 21 Real Estate surveyed nearly three-thousand people about Super Bowl, and found that a whopping 88-percent think home is the best place to watch the game. 52-percent of those surveyed said the key to having a successful Super Bowl party is having a TV that is the proper size and resolution, and
26-percent of men said that "being able to control instant replay with DVR" was a main reason watching at home was best. Also, it really is all about the game and the commercials - only six-percent of social-media-users surveyed said they plan to chat with friends via social media about the cheerleaders. (Mashable)
29 SUPER BOWL SNACKS YOU CAN MAKE IN A SLOW COOKER: http://tinyurl.com/bh929ut