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Gender: Male
Hometown: America's Finest City
Current location: District 50
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 9,635

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Kimberly Sue Endicott, tourist in Uganda, rescued from kidnappers, authorities say

Source: LA Times

An Orange County woman and her driver who were kidnapped at gunpoint by a group of men in a Uganda national park last week have been rescued from their captors, authorities said Sunday.

Kimberly Sue Endicott, 56, an aesthetician from Costa Mesa, and her driver, Congolese national Jean-Paul Mirenge Remezo, were rescued by security services, the Ugandan government tweeted. No other details about their rescue were available.

Their kidnappers had demanded a $500,000 ransom for their release.

Endicott was traveling in a car on an evening game drive with Remezo and two other tourists in the national park on Tuesday when four men held them at gunpoint. The other tourists, an elderly couple, escaped, but the gunmen took Endicott and Remezo, said Uganda deputy police spokeswoman Polly Namaye.

Read more: https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-kimberly-endicott-kidnapped-uganda-rescued-20190407-story.html

I believe I read previously that she ignored recommendations by authorities to hire guards for her excursion. She's fortunate to have been rescued.

Germany Demands Apology After Trump Claims Father Was Born There

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—German Chancellor Angela Merkel demanded that Donald Trump issue a “complete and sincere apology” to the German people, after Trump claimed incorrectly, on Tuesday, that his father was born in Germany.

“Of the many insulting things that Donald Trump could say to the German people, alleging that his father was born here is by far the most hurtful,” she said. “He must take it back at once.”

Merkel said that Germany would consider breaking off diplomatic relations with the U.S. immediately if Trump did not acknowledge “that his father was born somewhere else.”

Despite widely available evidence that Trump’s father, Fred Trump, was born in the Bronx, the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, stuck by Trump’s story on Tuesday afternoon. “The President is proud that his father was born in a great foreign country like Germany, and not in a bad foreign country like Puerto Rico,” she said.


How Rupert Murdoch's Empire of Influence Remade the World

Rupert Murdoch was lying on the floor of his cabin, unable to move. It was January 2018, and Murdoch and his fourth wife, Jerry Hall, were spending the holidays cruising the Caribbean on his elder son Lachlan’s yacht. Lachlan had personally overseen the design of the 140-foot sloop — named Sarissa after a long and especially dangerous spear used by the armies of ancient Macedonia — ensuring that it would be suitable for family vacations while also remaining competitive in superyacht regattas. The cockpit could be transformed into a swimming pool. The ceiling in the children’s cabin became an illuminated facsimile of the nighttime sky, with separate switches for the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. A detachable board for practicing rock climbing, a passion of Lachlan’s, could be set up on the deck. But it was not the easiest environment for an 86-year-old man to negotiate. Murdoch tripped on his way to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

Murdoch had fallen a couple of other times in recent years, once on the stairs while exiting a stage, another time on a carpet in a San Francisco hotel. The family prevented word from getting out on both occasions, but the incidents were concerning. This one seemed far more serious. Murdoch was stretchered off the Sarissa and flown to a hospital in Los Angeles. The doctors quickly spotted broken vertebrae, which required immediate surgery, as well as a spinal hematoma, increasing the risk of paralysis or even death. Hall called his adult children in a panic, urging them to come to California prepared to make peace with their father.

Few private citizens have ever been more central to the state of world affairs than the man lying in that hospital bed, awaiting his children’s arrival. As the head of a sprawling global media empire, he commanded multiple television networks, a global news service, a major publishing house and a Hollywood movie studio. His newspapers and television networks had been instrumental in amplifying the nativist revolt that was reshaping governments not just in the United States but also across the planet. His 24-hour news-and-opinion network, the Fox News Channel, had by then fused with President Trump and his base of hard-core supporters, giving Murdoch an unparalleled degree of influence over the world’s most powerful democracy. In Britain, his London-based tabloid, The Sun, had recently led the historic Brexit crusade to drive the country out of the European Union — and, in the chaos that ensued, helped deliver Theresa May to 10 Downing Street. In Australia, where Murdoch’s power is most undiluted, his outlets had led an effort to repeal the country’s carbon tax — a first for any nation — and pushed out a series of prime ministers whose agenda didn’t comport with his own. And he was in the midst of the biggest deal of his life: Only a few weeks before his fall on Lachlan’s yacht, he shook hands on a London rooftop with Robert A. Iger, the chief executive of the Walt Disney Company, consummating a preliminary agreement to sell his TV and film studio, 21st Century Fox, to Disney for $52.4 billion. But control of this sprawling empire was suddenly up in the air.

The four grown children had differing claims to the throne. The 61-year-old Prudence, the only child of Murdoch’s first marriage, to the Australian model Patricia Booker (whom he divorced in 1965), lived in Sydney and London and kept some distance from the family business. But the three children from Murdoch’s second marriage, to Anna Mann (whom he divorced in 1999), had spent at least parts of their lives jockeying to succeed their father. Elisabeth (50), Lachlan (47) and James (46) all grew up in the business. As children, they sat around the family’s breakfast table on Fifth Avenue, listening to their father’s tutorials on the morning papers: how the articles were selected and laid out, how many ad pages there were. All of them had imagined that his ever-growing company might one day belong to them. As friends of the Murdochs liked to say, Murdoch didn’t raise children; he raised future media moguls.


Tucker Carlson Challenges Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez To A Date

WASHINGTON—Inviting the young, outspoken Democrat to settle things once and for all, Tucker Carlson concluded a taping of Tucker Carlson Tonight Monday by challenging Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) to a date.

“You talk a pretty big game on Twitter, but let’s see how well your pie-in-the-sky ideas hold up when you finally have the guts to join me for a romantic dinner. Date me, coward!” said Carlson in a fiery rebuke of Ocasio-Cortez’s far-left policy proposals, repeated attacks on the Trump administration, and overall refusal to meet him one-on-one for a spirited yet civil exchange of ideas while splitting a bottle of shiraz.

“Hey, little Sandy, I hope you’re listening, because no one is going to take you seriously until you finally agree to date me. I’m not kidding. Any time, any place—maybe that new ramen place in Georgetown. If you want, we can even bring a camera crew and put it up on national television for everyone to see. But you’re probably too scared, aren’t you? Pathetic.”

Tucker Carlson ended the broadcast by angrily listing his cell phone number in case Ocasio-Cortez decided to “grow a pair.”


"Fox & Friends" Blames Obama for Creating Additional Mexicos

NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—After praising Donald J. Trump, on Sunday, for cutting aid to “three Mexican countries,” the cast of “Fox & Friends” blamed former President Barack Obama for creating additional Mexicos during his tenure in the White House.

“When Barack Obama took office, there was only one Mexico,” the host Ed Henry said. “He allowed these additional Mexicos to develop.”

Henry’s co-host Jedediah Bila agreed that the problem of multiple Mexicos was Obama’s fault. “It was bad enough having one Mexico without Obama going out and creating a bunch of new ones,” she said, noting that there had been a three-hundred-per-cent increase in the number of Mexicos on Obama’s watch.

The third host, Pete Hegseth, praised Trump for doing everything in his power to “reduce the number of Obama’s Mexicos.” “Everyone agrees that there are way too many Mexicos right now,” he said.

Later in the day, the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said that, after watching “Fox & Friends,” President Trump was committed to finding out “just how many Mexicos there are,” and that he had put the Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, in charge of counting them.


Report: Phasing out fossil fuels could save 3.6 million lives per year

Switching from fossil fuels to renewables could save 3.6 million lives each year, while slowing climate change, according to research by scientists at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and other international science centers.

Their findings, published March 25 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, point to substantial health benefits that could accompany efforts to cut carbon emissions. Those include reduced deaths from illnesses linked to air pollution as well as increased rainfall in drought-prone areas of the world.

“We want to make the planet carbon neutral, so the nice thing about that is it will get rid of the air pollution,” as well, said Veerabhadran Ramanathan, a co-author of the study and professor of atmospheric science at Scripps.

Ramanathan proposed the recent study to colleagues, including researcher Jos Lelieveld of the Max Planck Institute in Germany, scientists at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and researchers at institutions in Cyprus and Canada.


The 'Jexodus' of Jews switching parties isn't what the GOP is hoping for

To the organizers of Jexodus, the movement to lure Jews away from the Democratic Party and over to the GOP, I have good news and bad news.

The good news: There is a Jexodus! Jews, including many prominent intellectuals, have been bolting their longtime party en masse.

The bad news: The party they are leaving is the GOP.

Ever since the GOP rolled over and became the Party of Trump, normally stalwart Republican Jews have made it clear they can no longer abide what their party has become. The list includes Max Boot, Jennifer Rubin, Bill Kristol, David Frum, David Brooks and Bret Stephens.


Justice Department warns film academy to preserve Netflix's Oscar eligibility

Source: LA Times

The U.S. Justice Department has warned the motion picture academy to chill when it comes to Netflix and any new Oscar eligibility rules.

Makan Delrahim, the assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s antitrust division, sent a letter to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences CEO Dawn Hudson warning that potential rule changes limiting the eligibility of Netflix movies in Oscar competition might violate antitrust law.

“In the event that the Academy — an association that includes multiple competitors in its membership — establishes certain eligibility requirements for the Oscars that eliminate competition without procompetitive justification, such conduct may raise antitrust concerns,” Delrahim wrote Hudson, in the March 21 letter first obtained by Variety.

“We’ve received a letter from the Dept. of Justice and have responded accordingly,” an academy spokesperson said in an email to The Times. “The Academy’s Board of Governors will meet on April 23 for its annual awards rules meeting, where all branches submit possible updates for consideration.”

Read more: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/la-et-mn-justice-department-oscars-netflix-20190402-story.html

Why should the Justice Department get in the middle of this?

California's in an exceptional earthquake drought. When will it end?

California is in an earthquake drought.

It has been almost five years since the state experienced its last earthquake of magnitude 6 or stronger — in Napa. Southern California felt its last big quake on Easter Sunday 2010, and that shaker was actually centered across the border, causing the most damage in Mexicali.

Experts know this calm period will eventually end, with destructive results. They just don’t know when this well-documented geological pattern will shift.

“Earthquake rates are quite variable: We have a decade or two where we don’t have many earthquakes, and people expect that’s what California is always like,” said Elizabeth Cochran, seismologist with the U.S. Geological Survey. Eventually, “we’re going to dramatically see a change in earthquake rates.”


Mick Jagger to undergo heart surgery

Source: CNN

Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger is set to undergo heart surgery this week, a source close to the band tells CNN.

The source said the surgery is to replace a valve in his heart.

A representative for Jagger declined further comment to CNN.

The news comes three days after The Rolling Stones postponed their North American tour that was set to kick off on April 20 in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/02/entertainment/mick-jagger-heart-surgery/index.html

Any heart surgery is serious stuff.
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