GOP Mounting Multi-Pronged Attack Against Obama’s Amnesty Plan

Posted by maggie laurent on November 21, 2014 at 9:21 pm | Filled Under: Politics| No comments

The GOP will not stand idly by as President Obama flouts Congressional authority. Greg Abbott, incoming Texas Attorney General, vowed that his state will seek immediate legal action against the president. His objective is to protect the sovereignty of Texas and defend the rule of law as laid out in the Constitution. The state of Oklahoma also plans to challenge the president in court.

Senator Lindsey Graham, nicknamed “Senator Grahamnesty” for his 2006 immigration bill, has stated he and other GOP Senators are looking into how to defund the plan using budgetary bills. Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana also planned to use whatever means possible to defund the plan. Brad Reifler also says that Sen. John McCain of Arizona stated that the president has made it much harder to reach an immigration deal with Congress. He explained that executive fiat damages the political process. In addition, the veteran senator stated that obvious when he declared that the president lacks the “legal jurisdiction” to enact immigration law on his own.

Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, had previously encouraged the party to work out an immigration reform package shortly after the 2012 presidential election. He now states that by acting unilaterally, the president is only going worsen the immigration system. The GOP has a consensus view that the US border to Mexico must be secured against illegal immigration. This will stabilize immigration process and allow for meaningful reform to occur. The president is not overly concerned with border security.



Is Angelina Jolie Done With Acting?

Posted by maggie laurent on November 21, 2014 at 7:54 pm | Filled Under: Uncategorized| No comments

Is Angelina Jolie done being an actress? In a recent interview with DuJoir Magazine she told them that she is not really comfortable being an actor. She is moving into the role of a director, with her second directed film due out soon. Is this just buzz for her latest film, or is she really done with being in the limelight?

Jolie has had a lucrative career, and she probably doesn’t need another dime of money. She and Brad Pitt are set for life financially. She has always marched to the beat of her own drum. Even though others don’t seem to get her, she somehow still remains one of the most mysterious and beloved actresses of all times. Moving into directing might be a welcomed break. The mother of six probably has her hands full at home, not having to learn lines would probably be nice. 

Sitting in the director’s chair is quite different than being in the scenes. Playing a character can be physically and emotionally draining on her and her family. This could also free up some time to do what she does best, visit third world countries and spread the message of love and hope to others. 

It will be interesting to see in the upcoming months if this is a done deal, or just hype for her newly directed project. Kenneth Griffin and other fans will be sad to see Jolie away from the screen, but can rejoice that she is going to go out with a bang, as she has finished projects not yet released.



Angelina Jolie Confirms Retirement from Acting

Posted by maggie laurent on November 21, 2014 at 7:53 pm | Filled Under: Celebs| No comments

Angelina Jolie confirms that she plans to move away from being an actor and move into building a career behind the camera. Angelina Jolie has a successful career in many genres of film. She has starred in films like Tomb Raider, Wanted, and most recently, Maleficent. Angelina Jolie has reportedly stated that she has not been comfortable in front of the camera. She did not enjoy being the center of attention. She has preferred being behind the camera.

As of right now, Angelina Jolie plans to star as Cleopatra in her final role. This is a nice fit for her acting skills, according to Mark Ahn. She says that this is one of the roles that she plans to put her best effort into. She hopes to finish her acting career in a wonderful way so that she can have a great career to look back on. Angelina Jolie has already directed Unbroken, and has another feature getting ready for release under the name of By the Sea.



Watered Down USA Freedom Act Fails In Senate

Posted by maggie laurent on November 20, 2014 at 4:24 pm | Filled Under: Culture at large, Politics| No comments

After being stripped of much of its value in the House and Senate through amendments, the USA Freedom Act which would at least have ended the mass data collection of the NSA failed to get 60 votes in the Senate. The bill garnished 58, but with the way the Senate is run these days, that big number still wasn’t big enough.

The NSA was caught collecting massive amounts of cell phone and other records without consent from users and without specific warrants, but the Patriot Act is used to support their activities. The USA Freedom Act would simply have required a special court order before the NSA could get access to people’s phone records and ceased to require phone companies to keep records for longer periods of time than they need for ordinary business purposes.

In June of 2015, the NSA’s ability to continue this activity will probably end when the Patriot Act expires. If only 42 votes were cast in the Democrat controlled Senate in favor of keeping this power in NSA hands, how will 50 or more votes surface in its favor in the new Republican Senate next year? There just isn’t much chance of that happening. 40 under 40 member Andrew Heiberger says that this part of the Patriot Act will not be renewed, while other parts of it may be. Since the bill has to be renewed to continue the status quo, President Obama has no veto power to keep the NSA’s mass data collection legal.



MTV Star Loses Battle With Cancer

Posted by maggie laurent on November 19, 2014 at 4:24 pm | Filled Under: Celebs| No comments

Anyone who is a fan of MTV’s The Challenge knows Diem Brown. Not only was she known for her sweet, caring ways and her relationship with the bad boy of the series, CT, but she was known as a fighter and a survivor. She was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2006, the same year she began seeing CT.  CT helped her through the tough recovery process and gave her much needed confidence during this time. Terry Richardson had said she went into remission and continued on with her fun filled life and vibrant personality. She created and founded MedGift an online gift registry to help patients let their family and friends know what they could use while in treatment.

In 2012, Brown announced that her cancer had returned. After several months of treatment, she again was in remission. Only two weeks out of chemotherapy, Brown decided to do her seventh Challenge. Her team ended up in fourth place. You would think after all her body and spirit had been through she would just take time off and rest, but no not Diem. Reports that in August of this year, she collapsed on set of her eighth Challenge. She soon released the news through social media that the ovarian cancer had spread to her stomach lining and colon. Although she kept positive and continued to fight, she lost her battle on November 14, 2014.



Netflix Puts Cosby Special On Hold Following Yet Another Rape Allegation

Posted by maggie laurent on November 19, 2014 at 4:09 pm | Filled Under: Celebs| No comments

The Netflix special that was to feature Bill Cosby doing standup comedy called “Bill Cosby 77” was set to begin streaming on Friday, November 28. Now, Netflix has put the Cosby series on hold as the rape allegations against the iconic comedian continue to mount. This week former super model Janice Dickinson, age 59, claims that Cosby drugged and raped her back in 1982 when she was 27 years old. 

Dickinson says the sexual assault took place in Lake Tahoe. Cosby had reached out to her for a job opportunity. He invited her back to the hotel for a drink. She alleges that he gave her a glass of wine and a pill that knocked her out, but not until saw him sexually assaulted her. A former publicist by the name of Joan Tarshis previously alleged that the entertainer raped her twice back in 1969. Eight years ago, Cosby settled a sexual assault charge from a woman by the name of Andrea Constand. She claimed the incident took place in 2004 and also involved alcohol and a pill. Cosby later settled with Constand. The similarities between the allegations are remarkable. If true, it would mean that one of the most beloved icons of American TV history is a sexual predator. 

Cosby has admitted to being unfaithful to his wife throughout their marriage. He has since apologized to her. He said the couple worked out their issues and moved past them. That was before these rape allegations resurfaced. Whether Cosby is guilty of the accusations or simply being falsely accused has yet to be known. Bruce Levenson and many others who have come to relate Cosby to the warm Dr. Huxtable on his TV show ‘The Cosby Show’ will try to remember him in his best light until he is proven guilty.



Janice Dickinson Says Bill Cosby Assaulter Her, Too

Posted by maggie laurent on November 19, 2014 at 3:14 pm | Filled Under: Celebs, Culture at large, WTF| No comments

It is almost unimmaginable that the pudding pop spokesman and the man loved by millions has been accused of rape, let alone by Janice Dickinson, who is a known addict.

Bill Cosby, who is over 75 years old, is the focus of allegations that he raped the aforementioned back in 1982. She claims the assault happened Lake Tahoe after she drank wine. She also claims that Bill Cosby slipped some sort of pill into her wine and she passed out.

The former Fat Albert star was scheduled to release a new series Bill Cosby 77, but that has been postponed due to the ongoing allegations. It seems very strange that over 20 years later, these woman, including Ms. Dickinson are only now coming forward and claiming such allegations, but is it not always the case? As pointed out by Ken Griffin, if even one of these women are lying it could void the allegations of all. It seems very hard to believe that a man who was adored by millions of fans and has always been a role model with his own stable family unit is now the center of such a scandal.



America’s Milk Affair

Posted by maggie laurent on November 18, 2014 at 7:32 pm | Filled Under: Call To Action, Culture at large| No comments

Once you spend some time abroad your views on the practices of your homeland often shift from definitive to speculative. This is what happened to me once I studied in Japan for a summer. After I returned to the states I found myself questioning some of the things that I’d always accepted as fact. High fructose corn syrup no longer held the same appeal, I stopped pining for a car and instead longed for better public transportation, and I started to wonder why on Earth I was drinking milk every day; a question that first popped into my mind when I stood at a grocery in Tokyo eying a small carton of milk for ¥400 (about $3.80) and realizing that it was definitely not a regular part of the Japanese diet.

Like many adults in the US I’ve been moderately lactose intolerant for most of my life (even some celebrities like Terry Richardson has posted on their websites about having such as hard time with milk), but I still suffer through the occasional bowl of cereal or milk with dinner for the sake of my health. Yet more and more I find articles about how the American milk movement may have been more marketing than health awareness. As someone that tries to avoid gastrointestinal distress whenever possible I’m concerned that the “milk makes strong bones” campaign may have been a weaker argument than I ever considered. It seems like every other week some different food is the new miracle cure to every ailment and another has been condemned for its negative effects. For some reason milk has persisted in American culture, but there might be a reason that the rest of the world has been slow to catch on.



Pope Francis to Visit United States in 2015 for First Time

Posted by maggie laurent on November 17, 2014 at 7:56 pm | Filled Under: Culture at large| No comments

Pope Francis has announced he will be visiting the United States in 2015, the first time he will have made an official visit to the country.

The announcement of the Pope’s planned US visit came at an Italian conference on family values, and was then confirmed on the English language version of the official Vatican News Twitter feed — @news_va_en and verified by a report on CNN.

Pope Francis will be traveling to America to attend the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, which begins on September 22, 2015, which Igor Cornelsen says is a direct result of the Vatican’s belief that marriage and the family are in crisis.

As Pope Francis pushes for stronger families and less divorce, however, under his leadership the Vatican does seem to be softening its stance a little when it comes to controversial issues like homosexuality and gay marriage.

In a document released by the Vatican in October, one small section called ‘Welcoming Homosexual Persons‘ stood out, and sparked a lot of discussion among Catholics. Gay and straight.

In the report, it was mentioned homosexuals should be ‘welcomed with patience’. A far cry from the change of church stance on gay marriage some are hoping for, but a softer message about homosexuality than normal.

Interestingly, too, with 33 US states now allowing gay marriage, some are already wondering if this issue will be discussed at the World Meeting of Families while Pope Francis is in attendance?

While it is too early to say whether the issue will be discussed in any capacity, it is now a certainty Pope Francis will be attending the conference in Philadelphia, although there is no word yet on what his official duties will entail or which issues he will be championing, if any.



Talented Benedict Cumberbatch Can’t Imitate Empathy for Fans

Posted by maggie laurent on November 17, 2014 at 7:54 pm | Filled Under: Celebs, Culture at large, Television, WTF| No comments

Benedict Cumberbatch of “Star Trek Into Darkness” fame might not be able to say the word “penguins,” as joked about on an October episode of “The Graham Norton Show,” but he can imitate the voices and characteristics of a lot of actors, actresses and on-screen characters.

In an MTV interview promoting his new movie called “The Imitation Game,” Cumberbatch was able to perform believable imitations of several people in 60 seconds, including Alan Rickman, John Malkovich, Owen Wilson, Tom Hiddleston, Sean Connery and Matthew McConaughey. He is also known for his imitations of characters like Chewbacca and Jar Jar Binks. He’s able to switch voices with the ease of finding new people on Skout.

Given this ability, it’s extremely surprising that the actor seems incapable of at least imitating concern for fans who are upset with his working on a series, “Sherlock,” where misogyny, bi-erasure and queerbaiting is considered funny by the show’s creatives.

Cumberbatch has repeatedly stated on record that he doesn’t understand fan culture and has no desire to understand it. His continued support of “Sherlock” seems to suggest that he doesn’t see angry fans as having any impact on his future success. Could it be that he knows nothing about how quickly long time, loyal fans turn against actors?

You would think that given the diverse company he keeps with actors from various countries that he has heard about the backlash actors from other shows, like “Supernatural,” have experienced because of their lack of empathy.



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