New York - Former NBC top executive Jeff Zucker was named Thursday as president of CNN Worldwide, heading up the news media operation as it seeks to adapt to new technology platforms. Zucker will start in January as head of the 23 news and information businesses including the CNN news channel, CNN International and CNN.com, parent company Time Warner said in a statement. (Snip) The announcement came after CNN´s viewer ratings hit their lowest levels in two decades, behind Fox News Channel and MSNBC. Zucker stepped down as head of NBC Universal after the merger
If Susan E. Rice becomes Secretary of State, she might have to recuse herself from one of the first and most controversial decisions she would face: the Keystone XL oil pipeline permit. The reason: Rice and her husband are major shareholders in the pipeline company as well as a variety of Canadian companies that are involved in exploiting the oil sands region of Alberta, which would feed the Keystone XL and benefit from a new outlet.
With pen and gavel, the U.N.’s International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Hague last week redrew the maritime map between Colombia and Nicaragua—doubling Nicaragua’s exclusive economic zone in the Caribbean Sea by 100,000 sq km (38,600 sq mi). But the ICJ may have doubled Nicaragua’s trouble as well, not just because Colombia heatedly rejects the ruling—this week Colombian warships defiantly continue to ply Nicaragua’s newly acquired maritime territory—but because the decision hands the small, impoverished Central American nation more water than it can likely swallow, creating potential new tensions in the pond of the Americas.
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) slammed the door Thursday morning on Democratic demands to raise tax rates on families earning more than $250,000 per year. “We’re insisting on keeping tax rates where they are, first and foremost, to protect jobs and because we don’t think government needs the money in the first place,” McConnell said on the Senate floor. “The problem, as I’ve said, is that Washington spends too much. But if more revenue is the price that Democrats want to exact, then we should at least agree to do it in a way that doesn’t cost jobs
House Speaker John Boehner, clearly frustrated after a closed-door meeting with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, said President Obama´s money man offered no "specific" plan for averting the looming end-of-year fiscal crisis, adding: "This is not a game." "First, despite the claims that the president supports a balanced approach, Democrats have yet to get serious about real spending cuts," the Ohio Republican said. "And secondly, no substantive progress has been made in the talks between the White House and the House over the last two weeks." Obama dispatched Geithner and White House Legislative Director Rob Nabors to meet separately
We’ve heard different accounts and different timelines concerning the attack at Benghazi. What exactly happened? First, people must understand that the compound that was attacked was situated in a somewhat rural area and was not a consulate, but a rented villa, or a residential structure. The residence was the primary building, and what has been referred to as the annex was located about 1800 feet away as the crow flies, but just over a mile to travel by road. And again, visible security was not present as the compound was the headquarters for a covert operation.
Two decades have passed since nightclub entertainer and blond bombshell Gennifer Flowers stepped before cameras and announced she had a 12-year affair with then-Gov. Bill Clinton, joining a roster of attractive women who reported similar dalliances, wanted and unwanted. Miss Flowers has stepped forward once again to reveal that in 2005, Mr. Clinton offered to come visit her once again.
Tipper. Update on the lady who used to be the once was, formerly, previous wife of Al Gore, who used to be the once was, formerly, previous VP of the US. Living far from glorious friendly Washington, she’s in Santa Barbara. Now happy. Dating a photographer. But the split’s civilized. She sees Al, they speak, even recently vacationed together. It’s just that they don’t anymore want to live together. Al, meanwhile, has made a crateload. Fat with cash. Fat with investments. And with nothing overwhelming to stress him, also fat with fat.
Ludovic Mohammed Zahed is braced for controversy, maybe even worse. A gay Muslim and an expert on the Koran, Zahed plans to open Europe´s first gay-friendly mosque in Paris at the end of this month. He calls it a place of shelter as well as a place of worship. "We need to have a safe space for people who do not feel comfortable and at ease in normal mosques," Zahed told ABC News. "There are transgender people who fear aggression, women who do not want to wear head scarf or sit in the back of the mosque.
White House Dossier´s Keith Koffler reports on what could be a very touchy Christmas vacation: President Obama is reportedly scheduled to be vacationing in Hawaii on January 2, the date billions in spending cuts – and untold consequences for the economy – will kick in if a deal is not reached on the “fiscal cliff.” According to the Hawaii Reporter, residents who live in the area of Oahu where Obama and his family vacation have been told that the usual restrictions on their movements during an Obama stay will be in place for 21 days,
The Guantanamo Bay detention centre could be closed and the 166 inmates could be sent to prisons in the US, according to a new government report. "This report demonstrates that if the political will exists, we could finally close Guantanamo without imperilling our national security," said Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Senate Intelligence Committee chairwoman who released the recommendations. The Government Accountability Office study shows that US prisons already hold 373 prisoners convicted of terrorism in 98 facilities across the country. "As far as I know, there hasn´t been a single security problem reported
Former President George H.W. Bush remains in a Houston hospital, where he has been for seven days as doctors battle a lingering cough that has drawn concern, officials said Thursday. Bush, 88, has bronchitis, but his condition is not considered life threatening, said his chief of staff, Jean Becker. "President Bush is in the hospital," Becker said. "We have kept this quiet out of respect for him." Bush has been in and out of Methodist Hospital for a few weeks, and was most recently admitted the day after Thanksgiving, she said.
Who within the Obama administration deleted mention of "terrorism" and "al-Qaeda" from the CIA´s talking points on the deadly Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. mission in Benghazi? It isn´t the only unanswered question in the wake of the tragedy, but it´s proven to be one of the most confounding. The question was first raised 12 days ago when former CIA Director General David Petraeus told members of Congress that his original talking points cleared for public dissemination included the likely involvement by terrorists and an al-Qaeda affiliate.
Michael Oren is Israel’s ambassador to the United States. What makes better headlines? Is it numbing figures such as the 8,000 Palestinian rockets fired at Israel since it unilaterally withdrew from Gaza in 2005, and the 42.5?percent of Israeli children living near the Gaza border who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder? Or is it high-resolution images of bombed-out buildings in Gaza and emotional stories of bereaved Palestinians? The last, obviously, as demonstrated by much of the media coverage of Israel’s recent operation against Hamas. But that answer raises a more fundamental question: Which stories best serve the terrorists’ interest?
A federal appeals court issued an injunction on Wednesday that temporarily blocks President Barack Obama’s Department of Health and Human Services from implementing Obamacare’s contraception mandate. The mandate requires employers to provide their employees with health care plans that include coverage for contraceptives, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs. Missouri business owner Frank O’Brien, who employs 87 people at O’Brien Industrial Holdings, alleged in the lawsuit that led to the injunction that the mandate unconstitutionally infringes on his religious beliefs. On its website, the company says its mission is “to make our labor a pleasing offering
With graduation approaching this spring, Jessica McSweeney has a sinking feeling. A senior Human Development major at Cornell University, she has completed her required science and writing classes and looks forward to traveling this summer. But one thing stands between the 21-year-old Ms. McSweeney and her diploma: three lengths in the school´s 25-yard swimming pool. Cornell students must take the plunge in order to graduate, either by passing a swim test or enrolling in a beginner´s swim class. Ms. McSweeney, who hasn´t been in a pool much since grade school, is less than lukewarm on the tradition.
WASHINGTON, ? The Benghazi coverup makes Watergate look like child´s play. The White House is refuting testimony by former CIA Director David Petraeus to Congress saying the administration didn’t make any changes in its early talking points about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, to downplay the role of terrorists. This sounds something akin to the Watergate cover-up in 1970s, but there is one notable difference: In Benghazi we have four murdered Americans. The Watergate scandal was a political scandal in the 1970s, the result of a June 1972 break-in at the Democratic National Committee
Talks between the White House and GOP leaders in the House of Representatives are on everyone´s mind and solutions and ideas are coming fast and thick from many corners of Washington. But CNN thinks it has the way to fix it all: raise the gas tax. Dishonestly portraying "some experts" as offering a new fix to the fiscal cliff, CNN explored the idea of hiking the federal gas tax because, author Steve Hargreaves says, the current 18.4 cents per gallon is "not enough." "As lawmakers race to negotiate a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff,"
Sandra Fluke´s 15 minutes of fame aren´t over quite yet. The nation´s foremost expert on free birth control will be part of The Hollywood Reporter´s Women in Entertainment Breakfast to be held Dec. 5. Fluke, who became one of President Barack Obama´s War on Women surrogates, will address a crowd to include fellow honored guests Mindy Kaling and Kerry Washington. The breakfast, which will take place Dec. 5 at the Beverly Hills Hotel, will coincide with the launch of THR´s annual list of the Top 100 Most Powerful Women in Entertainment, which hits stands the same day.
The New York Times reports that union organizers are trying to convince fast food workers to unionize. The effort is being led by New York Communities for Change which is the name of the reorganized and rebranded former ACORN office in Brooklyn. “I feel I deserve $15 an hour,” said Linda Archer, 59 a McDonalds cashier. “I work very hard.” Archer currently earns $8 an hour and averages 24 hours a week. In 2010, an ACORN spokesman confirmed to the New York Post that New York Communities for Change, “has many of the same board members as ACORN,
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), in reference to negotiations over the fiscal cliff and taxes, said the “the election was held, the people have spoken,” suggesting that Americans support tax hikes for the “people at the high end.” In an appearance on NPR’s All Things Considered, to be aired Wednesday evening, Pelosi was asked about Congress’ need to address the quickly approaching fiscal cliff. “This is just a decision. There’s no mystery, there’s no new factors that are going to enter into the situation,” Pelosi said.
In an op-ed in Monday’s Wall Street Journal, liberal political analyst Juan Williams observed that Republicans have lost more power in the Senate and decides that the GOP has only itself to blame for its defeat because, as in 2010, the party allowed conservatives and the Tea Party to prevail. Williams writes: The curious reality is that party activists who cry out for more conservative voices in Washington are pushing Republicans in the Senate into political irrelevance. Under pressure from the right, the GOP has nominated candidates with little or no appeal to moderate voters.
Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) says, “corporations control the patterns of thinking” in the United States and that the Bill of Rights to the Constitution should be amended so that the government is given the power to restrict freedom of speech. "We need a constitutional amendment to allow the legislature to control the so-called free speech rights of corporations," said Johnson. “These corporations, along with the people they support, other millionaires who they’re putting into office, are stealing your government. They’re stealing the government and the U.S. Supreme Court was a big enabler with the Citizens United case,”
Much of the conservative world seems shocked that the RNC is constrained from doing anything about voter fraud. The left wing blogosphere is laughing at everyone who didn’t know this already. To me, it’s old old news – sort of like the abolition of poll taxes. In fact, the abolition of poll taxes in 1964 is closer in time to the consent decree that the RNC entered with the DNC in 1982 than we are today distant from that same 1982 consent decree. Simply, under the terms of the order, the RNC cannot engage in ballot
A New York police officer´s spontaneous act of kindness has captured the praise of hundreds of thousands of people across the internet. A tourist from Arizona captured a heartwarming photo of Lawrence Deprimo kneeling down to give a barefoot homeless man a pair of winter boots on a cold night earlier this month. The NYPD posted the photo on its Facebook page, an effort to show the softer side of the nation´s largest police force. Nearly 300,000 people have ´liked´ the photo online. Another 65,000 people have shared it.
The City of Brotherly Love, not content with a federal court decision ordering it to leave the kerchief-wearing, square knot-tying tykes alone, is back in court. As anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock will recall, the city has been trying to evict the Cradle of Liberty Chapter of the Boy Scouts for a number of years, after failing to ‘convince’ them to drop a national policy that precludes openly gay members. The city has been stymied at every legal turn, losing at both the state and federal levels. But they’re not finished yet.