Friday, November 27, 2009

R&B star Chris Brown to be interviewed on '20/20'

NEW YORK — ABC says Chris Brown will appear on its "20/20" newsmagazine Dec. 11.

In what's billed as an in-depth interview, the singer will discuss his assault of ex-girlfriend and recording superstar Rihanna in February. He is on probation for the beating.

Robin Roberts, anchor of ABC's "Good Morning America," conducts the interview. It was taped last weekend.

ABC spokesman Jeffrey Schneider says clips may also air on "Good Morning America." He says Brown will not perform live.

Brown is scheduled to release his album "Graffiti" on Dec. 8. He has previously spoken about the attack on MTV News and "Larry King Live."

Rihanna was interviewed this month by ABC's Diane Sawyer.

Cross-Examining the Climate Change Scammers

A trial lawyer reading through the hacked emails from the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) will immediately, almost unconsciously, begin generating a list of questions he would love to ask the authors if he were able to face them on the witness stand and under oath. The beauty of the adversarial process is how cross-examination tests and challenges the other side’s position – precisely what the emails indisputably show the CRU and its allies in the climate change scam have gone to shocking lengths to avoid.

There are several lines of examination that come immediately to mind. We can rest assured that it will never happen – as the emails show, the last thing they want to do is be in a position where they have to explain themselves. But certainly asking leading climate change cheerleader Phil Jones about his email describing his use of a “trick” to describe the manipulation of observed temperature data to “hide the decline” in order to achieve the desired result would be amusing:

* So, Dr. Jones, when you used the word “trick,” you really meant that it was not a “trick” at all but a valid, scientifically recognized process of data interpretation?
* Can you identify another instance in your experience where a scientist described his valid, scientifically recognized process of data interpretation with a term commonly used to describe a hoax, scam or fraud?
* And when you wrote the words “hide the decline,” is it now your testimony that when you used the word “hiding,” you were not actually “hiding” anything, and moreover, though you used the word “decline,” there was no “decline” in temperatures to be hidden in the first place?
* So, if I understand your explanation, it is that you commonly use language in your communications which means precisely the opposite of the meaning that you are seeking to communicate?
* And if an email from those who disagree with your findings – who you call “deniers” or “skeptics” – were to be made public that described their use of a “trick” to “hide the increase” in temperatures, would you find this to be of no great import because scientists commonly describe their processes as “tricks” and that their act of “hiding the increase” must be purely benign based on the manner of usage you describe?
* So, is it only proponents of man-made global warming that habitually use words and phrases that mean precisely the opposite of their common usage to describe their work?

But, as delightful as it would be to pick at particular instances of the activists’ admissions of fraud and their lame attempts to explain them away, there’s really one question that needs to be asked. In fact, if Al Gore would ever expose himself to the questions of anyone beyond the most credulous climate change sycophants, someone ought to ask it of him:

Mr. Gore, would you be happy if tomorrow you were to see irrefutable scientific evidence that mankind’s activities are not causing the Earth to warm?

A normal person would answer with a resounding, “Yes!” A normal person would be relieved that not only is our planet safe, but that we need not spend trillions of dollars and forfeit our most basic freedoms in pursuit of remedies for the bugbear of climate change.

But do you think for a second Al Gore would say, “Yes”? Do you think any of the global warming suckers would? Get real.

Understand you would not get an express, “No.” He would probably just deny the validity of the question (“We know climate change is real so that will never happen”). But after 15 years of examining witnesses, I have a rule of thumb. Any answer to a question that is not an unambiguous “Yes” is really a “No.”

And to those invested (ideologically, professionally and financially) in man-made climate change, the answer would be “No.” But contrary evidence would make no difference regardless. Al Gore and his ilk would not be shaken in the least by contrary scientific findings because the climate change scam is not driven by science. It is a campaign driven by the end the believers seek – an agenda of political, economic and social control. The science is simply a convenient means to that end. In fact, climate change belief is the opposite of science. It is a faith, a pagan religion complete with infallible doctrines, ritual sacrifices and even heretics who must be burned at the (so far) figurative stake.

A basic concept in the scientific method is falsifiability, the idea that a scientific hypothesis can be disproven through evidence. If a hypothesis cannot ever be falsified, then to believe it requires an act of faith. Therefore, if the climate change hypothesis is truly based upon science, with the production of satisfactory evidence it could be disproven. And this leads to one final question for the climate change believers:

Mr. Gore, if presented with irrefutable scientific evidence that the man-made climate change hypothesis is incorrect, would you accept it?

Of course, believing that Mr. Gore would answer with an unambiguous “Yes” would itself require an enormous leap of faith.

NYC mayor spent a record $102M to win a 3rd term

NEW YORK — Mayor Michael Bloomberg spent at least $102 million to narrowly win a third term, breaking his previous records for the most expensive self-financed political bid in U.S. history, according to a report released Friday by his campaign.

The report shows $18.6 million was spent from Oct. 20 through Thursday, including millions on last-minute television advertising.

Bloomberg, the wealthiest man in New York, has a fortune estimated by Forbes magazine to be $17.5 billion. He did not take donations and was allowed by law to spend whatever he wanted as long as he filed expense reports.

By contrast, his challenger William Thompson Jr. will probably have spent $9 million on his first mayoral bid when all the bills have been paid. Thompson relied on donations and matching funds. His filing is expected Monday.

Bloomberg had been widely predicted to win easily over his Democrat rival. But his push to overturn the city's term limits law so he could run again turned off voters, along with the struggling economy, and Thompson came within 50,000 votes of unseating him. Bloomberg won by about 5 percentage points, which means each point cost roughly $20 million.

"While vastly outspent, Bill Thompson's campaign ran a very close race because it focused on issues that New Yorkers most cared about, mainly that working New Yorkers are struggling to get by and are being squeezed out of the city," a spokesman for Thompson said.

Bloomberg, who made his fortune by founding the media company Bloomberg LP, has said the margin doesn't matter. "Nobody's going to remember two days later how much you won by. They're only going to remember who's going to be mayor for the next four years."

The next report will be out Jan. 15. His overall spending will probably rise even more after he hands out bonuses to his campaign workers. After his 2005 win, he rewarded salaried staffers with checks totaling more than $1 million for his top advisers, and hundreds of thousands more to other workers.

Bloomberg was first elected in 2001 by just a three-point margin, and he spent a record $74 million. In his re-election bid in 2005, he stomped his Democratic opponent by nearly 20 points and outspent himself by about $11 million, shelling out a whopping $85.1 million.

Twenty-two dead, 54 hurt in Russia train crash: reports

At least 22 people were killed and 54 injured Friday when a train travelling between the Russian capital Moscow and Saint Petersburg derailed, possibly as a result of an attack, Russian media reported.

Four wagons of the Nevski Express linking the two cities came off the tracks late on Friday evening in the Novgorod region, a railways official told the Ria-Novosti news agency.

Russia's state-run Itar-Tass news agency quoted the emergencies ministry and a railway official as saying that 22 people were dead and 54 others injured.

A unnamed security official was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying that a one metre-diametre (three feet wide) crater was found near the scene of the disaster.

"Witnesses say they heard a loud bang before the accident. This could be proof of an attack," the source said.

A railways official also told Itar-Tass that "an attack is one of the possibilities" being looked at by the police.

In 2007, a bomb on the same line derailed a train, injuring 60 passengers, with Chechen separatist or ultra-nationalist groups suspected.

Russian media said emergency services had been rushed to the scene of the crash, with most of the injured evacuated to local hospitals.

Snoop Dogg Wants Oprah’s Talk Show

Snoop Dogg wants to step into Oprah Winfrey’s shoes.

The ‘Signs’ rapper claims he is the ideal candidate to take over from the legendary talk show host when she stops making her self-titled programme in 2010.

He said, “I’m trying to proposition the networks right now. If you’re wanting a nice, black, exciting young male who wants to turn the TV world right up – get at me.

“I heard Oprah Winfrey is leaving and there’s nobody who can do what Oprah did but, ahem – hello! Hello!”

Snoop would also make his talk show a family affair.

He added, “I can bring my wife on so we can have the women and the men on there discussing things.”

Snoop’s previous TV experience started in 2002 with his MTV sketch show ‘Doggy Fizzle Televizzle’, and also includes his own reality show ‘Snoop Dogg’s Fatherhood’ and appearances in movies including ‘Old School’ and ‘Starsky and Hutch’.

He has also previously directed two pornographic movies ‘Snoop Dogg’s Doggystyle’ and ‘Snoop Dogg’s Hustlaz: Diary of a Pimp’.

Roethlisberger Expects To Play, But Steelers Need Backup Quarterback Plan

Pittsburgh, PA (AHN) – Ben Roethlisberger is back with the first team unit in practice and expects to play for the Steelers Sunday in Baltimore.

The star quarterback suffered a blow to the head in Sunday’s loss to Kansas City and Thursday was his first full day of practice after the “mild concussion.”

Third-string quarterback Dennis Dixon practiced Wednesday because backup quarterback Charlie Batch had surgery on his broken left wrist.

Batch was injured Sunday as well when he came in for Roethlisberger.

The Steelers looked at veteran quarterbacks Patrick Ramsey and Todd Bouman Thursday. Pittsburgh is preparing for the 5-5 Ravens.

There is no timetable for how long Batch will be out.

Ramsey was released by the Titans last month and Bouman last played last season for the Ravens

Police chief: Woods' wife helped after accident

A local police chief in Florida says Tiger Woods' wife used a golf club to smash out the back window and helped get the golfer out of the car.

Windermere Police Chief Daniel Saylor told The Associated Press on Friday that Elin Nordegren told officers she was in the house when she heard the accident and came outside. Saylor says officers found Woods laying in the street with his wife hovering over him.

Police say Woods hit a fire hydrant and part of a tree early Friday. Saylor says Woods was in and out of consciousness when his officers arrived.

Saylor says Woods had cuts on his lips and blood in his mouth. He says his officers gave him first aid until fire rescue came about 10 minutes later.

Saylor says his officers do not believe alcohol was involved.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

Tiger Woods sustained facial cuts in a minor car accident early Friday when his SUV hit a fire hydrant and a neighbor's tree as he was leaving his mansion in a gated waterfront community near Orlando, Fla.

The Florida Highway Patrol said the 33-year-old PGA Tour star was alone in his 2009 Cadillac when he pulled out of his driveway at 2:25 a.m.

The patrol reported Woods' injuries as serious, although Woods spokesman Glenn Greenspan said the golfer was treated at a hospital and released in good condition. Windermere mayor Gary Bruhn said police from the village were among the first on the scene and saw Woods with cuts on his face.

The patrol said alcohol was not involved, although the accident remains under investigation and charges could be filed.

Left unanswered was where Woods was going at that hour. Greenspan and agent Mark Steinberg said there would be no comment beyond the short statement of the accident on Woods' Web site.

Woods, coming off a two-week trip to China and Australia earlier this month, is host of the Chevron World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif., which starts Thursday. He is scheduled to have his press conference Tuesday afternoon at Sherwood Country Club. Steinberg said he did not know if Woods planned to play next week.

The accident report was not released until nearly 12 hours after Woods was injured. Patrol spokesman Kim Montes said injuries are considered serious if they require more than minor medical attention.

Montes said air bags in the SUV did not deploy.

Investigators still have not had a chance to speak to golf's No. 1 player, but when they do, "we will ask him everything," Montes said. "We just haven't had a chance to do so because he was being medically treated."

Montes said charges could be filed if there was a clear traffic violation, although troopers still do not know what caused Woods' SUV to hit the hydrant and the tree.

Woods' $2.4 million home is part of the exclusive Isleworth subdivision near Orlando, a community set on an Arnold Palmer-designed golf course and a chain of small lakes. The neighborhood, which is fortified with high brick walls and has its own security force, is home to CEOs and other sports stars such as the NBA's Shaquille O'Neal.

The Orlando Sentinel reported that an orange and white barricade sat on top of a hole in front of Woods' home. About 10 feet away, there was a tire track near an oak tree in his neighbor's yard. The tree had a few scuff marks but was largely unscathed.

Woods, who has won 82 times around the world and 14 majors, attended the Stanford-Cal football game, where he tossed the coin at the start of the game and was inducted into Stanford's sports Hall of Fame at halftime.

He won six times this year after missing eight months recovering from reconstructive surgery on his left knee. Even though he failed to win a major, Woods said he considered this a successful year because he did not know how his knee would respond.