Thursday, May 20, 2010

VIDEO: Jay-Z, Billionaire Nets owner & The Mayor talk business

Pharrell might own the Billionaire Boys Club clothing rights, but it’s Jay-Z who has actually made his way into the New York billionaires breakfast club. Hova, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, billionaire developer Bruce Ratner, and NJ Nets majority owner Mikhail Prokhorov all met for breakfast at Gracie Mansion.

One can only imagine the types of conversations they were having. For some reason I don’t think it was about the new Roc Nation earphones though. Pics after the jump…

Now, New York Times In Flap Over Blumenthal's Vietnam Comments

How quickly things can change. Earlier this week, the New York Times ran a bombshell article, which revealed that Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has misstated his military record. During a filmed presentation (and on other ocassions), Blumenthal said that he served in Vietnam, but he never did.

The article created quite a stir. Democratic politicians, however, continue to support Blumenthal, and the controversy might not cost him the upcoming senate election.

The New York Times, however, is now receiving criticism. Apparently, the New York Times failed to disclose potentially exculpatory statements by Blumenthal from the same taped speech in which he falsely stated that he served in Vietnam. During the taped speech, Blumental said that he served during Vietnam in the Marine Corp. reserves; later, however, he referenced his service in Vietnam. The New York Times only presented the most damaging statement.

It is unclear why Blumenthal would make potentially contradictory statements during the same speech (perhaps he truly misspoke). It is equally baffling that the New York Times would eliminate such an important part of the speech.

The New York Times, however, has defended its failure to present the entire context, stating that the earlier portion of the speech is not necessarily exculpatory ("during" does not exclude "in"). To some extent, this is true, but readers should have had the opportunity to evaluate the entire context of the story -- not simply the most damning parts.
Posted by Darren Lenard Hutchinson

Bret Michaels Suffers a Stroke

Jason LaVeris/FilmMagicUs Magazine Bret Michaels has suffered what doctors call a "warning stroke," or a transient ischemic attack, according to his Web site.

The rocker, 47 -- who is still recovering from a brain hemorrhage -- was "readmitted to the hospital this week after suffering numbness on the left side of his body, predominately his face and hands," according to a statement posted on his site.

While undergoing tests -- including an MRI and CT scan -- doctors also discovered he has a hole in his heart.

The news is " Bret and his family," says his neurosurgeon, Dr. Joseph Zabramski. Michaels has two daughters, Raine, 10, and Jorja, 5, with ex girlfriend Kristi Lynn Gibson.

Continues Dr. Zabramski, "The good news is that it is operable and treatable and we think we may have diagnosed the problem that caused the...warning stroke; however we feel it is highly unlikely this is connected to the brain hemorrhage he suffered just a few weeks earlier. Once again, it is great that he quickly reacted to the severe numbness and got to the hospital immediately."

Dr. Zabramski adds, "I realize Bret wants to make a full recovery so that he can be active with his family, attempt to attend the finale of Celebrity Apprentice and especially get back on the road to continue making music. Without a doubt he is very determined to get healthy and make a 100 percent recovery.

"Medically speaking it is a fantastic attitude both mentally and physically for him to have. However, Bret's brain and body are not quite 100 percent yet, especially with the hole found in his heart."

Video Bret on Oprah

Says his rep Janna Elias, "Bret wants everyone to know he cannot thank you enough for all of the well wishes, prayers and good vibes you have sent his way. Even though these last few months have been tough on him and his family, especially this most recent setback, he is in good spirits, great medical hands and is positive and hopeful that everything is going to be OK. He is up, walking, talking, continuing his daily rehab and very happy to be alive but he has made it clear he is sick and tired of being in the hospital and is ready to rock again."

Mexican President Opposes Arizona's SB 1070 on Visit to Capitol Hill -- Others Question His Logic

As the Justice Department continues its examination of Arizona’s newest immigration law, Mexican President Felipe Calderón echoed his country’s sentiment on the immigration issue in the U.S. today during a news conference with President Obama.

Calderón told Obama yesterday, according to the Washington Post, that his country will “retain our firm rejection to criminalize migration” and “oppose firmly” the application of the Arizona law to law-abiding citizens in the United States.

An El Paso news station, KTSM, reported on Calderón’s comments on Arizona’s immigration law earlier this month, examining Mexico’s own harsh immigration policies. No one can doubt that Mexico has, in many ways, stricter policies on both legal and illegal immigrants that the U.S., but Calderón’s comments resonate with the opinions of the people of his country.

Just last Sunday in Mexico City, a concert with Mexican and Latin American musicians and bands organized by Mexico City’s government and dedicated to protesting Arizona’s SB 1070 — “Jóvenes Prepa Sí por la dignidad: Todos somos Arizona” (Students for Dignity: We Are All Arizona) — brought together nearly 50,000 people.

Other Mexican officials have also spoken out against Arizona’s law, including Secretary of Foreign Affairs Patricia Espinosa Cantellano. Later this month, a group of Mexican senators from the country’s three major parities will travel to Phoenix to discuss the state law with U.S. senators and immigrant advocacy groups.

According to the Washington Post, Calderón “said the United States and Mexico face a choice between moving forward or returning to ‘mutual recrimination, which has been so useless and so damaging in previous times.’”

Mexico’s outspoken opposition to Arizona’s SB 1070 has invited some questions about whether any other country has a right to criticize the U.S. for a domestic policy issue. “I just think it’s inappropriate to be a visitor in the United States or to another country,” Rep. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told the Dallas Morning News, “and to go in and criticize the domestic laws of that country.”

Others — even some opposed to SB 1070 — were protesting the Mexican president’s visit. Union members from United Steelworkers and the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) cited the Mexican government’s violations of workers’ rights during his visit today. AFL-CIO’s Los Angeles County Executive Secretary Maria Elena Durazo said: “Just because a politician is defending immigrant workers in this country does not mean we will excuse him for fighting against workers rights in Mexico.”

Maddow Digs In On Charges Rand Paul Would Have Opposed Civil Rights Act

Since last Tuesday, it’s been morning after week for Kentucky Senate Republican candidate Rand Paul. While he recorded interviews at NPR and The O’Reilly Factor today, he didn’t waste any time booking himself for the toughest interview he could find. Tonight, that interview was on The Rachel Maddow Show. Don’t be deceived by the lack of shouting– this was by far the most heated exchange of the night across cable news.

It wasn’t the first time Paul was on the program– in fact, he had announced his candidate for Kentucky Senate on The Rachel Maddow Show months before. But last night’s interview was almost like a science experiment: put two of the most ideologically pure people in the politi-media world together to challenge each other on one of the issues they each care about the most. For Paul, that issue is the rights of the individual and the danger of the federal government stepping over them. For Rachel Maddow, the issue is institutional discrimination and the moral obligation to abolish it. That, at least, is how each one of them saw the respective problems and successes of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which Paul had been coming under attack for allegedly opposing.

by Frances Martel

Judge issues warrant for Lindsay Lohan's arrest

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — A judge issued a warrant Thursday for Lindsay Lohan's arrest after the actress missed a mandatory hearing, and authorities say she could be arrested at the airport when she returns from the Cannes Film Festival. Bail was set at $100,000.

Lohan didn't seem too worried Thursday morning. The 23-year-old actress was partying on a yacht in the French Riviera until the wee hours, says celebrity photographer Phil Ramey, who posted the photos on his website

Lohan was due in court for a progress report on her probation stemming from two arrests in 2007. Her attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley, said Lohan's passport was stolen while in Cannes and she was unable to return to Los Angeles in time for Thursday's hearing.

"She did, in fact, have airline tickets," Holley told the judge. "From our standpoint, there is a valid reason for her not being here today."

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