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  • Congressman Kennedy Alleges 'Quid Pro Quo' for Access to White House

    Access to the Obama White House is in direct correlation to the amount of money donated to the president's reelection effort and the Democratic party, the New York Times reports today.

    The Times reports: "those who donated the most to Mr. Obama and the Democratic Party since he started running for president were far more likely to visit the White House than others. Among donors who gave $30,000 or less, about 20 percent visited the White House, according to a New York Times analysis that matched names in the visitor logs with donor records. But among those who donated $100,000 or more, the figure rises to about 75 percent. Approximately two-thirds of the president’s top fund-raisers in the 2008 campaign visited the White House at least once, some of them numerous times."

    But the most explosive allegation in the news story comes from former Democratic congressman Patrick Kennedy, son of the late Ted Kenney, who calls what the Obama White House is doing "quid pro quo."

    Patrick J. Kennedy, the former representative from Rhode Island, who donated $35,800 to an Obama re-election fund last fall while seeking administration support for a nonprofit venture, said contributions were simply a part of “how this business works.”

    “If you want to call it ‘quid pro quo,’ fine,” he said. “At the end of the day, I want to make sure I do my part.”

    Kim Kardashian posts behind the scenes snaps of seductive lingerie shoot

    The 31-year-old reality star posted behind-the-scenes images of herself clad in the retro undergarments from a Cosmopolitan UK lingerie shoot on Instagram and linked them to her Twitter account.

    In one shot Kim is seen pouting into the camera wearing just a feather-embellished basque with her hair tumbling down around her shoulders.

    In another snap the TV personality appeared to be channelling French actress Brigitte Bardot, one of the most iconic sex symbols of the 1960's.

    Kim - who is now dating 34-year-old rapper Kanye West - recently shed 10lbs in 10 days for a family trip to the Dominican Republic.

    The E! star went gluten, dairy and sugar free and used Sunfare's 1,300 calorie-a-day meal, according to Us Weekly.

    Bruce's issue is apparently not with Kanye, but at the way Kim so quickly falls for people, as displayed in her whirlwind relationship with now estranged husband Kris Humphries.

    Meanwhile her 56-year-old mother couldn’t be happier about the pairing – which was revealed to the world when Kim and Kanye were spotted enjoying a cinema date together – particularly in the wake of Kim’s impending divorce from NBA star Humphries.
    Read more:

    Comedienne Sarah Silverman supports pro-choice debate

    Comedienne Sarah Silverman joined America's current War on Women yesterday after she tweeted a hoax before-and-after abortion photo.

    Reigniting the women's rights movement via Twitter, the 41-year-old wrote: 'Got a quickie aborsh in case R v W gets overturned.'

    The controversial comment captioned two photos of Miss Silverman made to look like she was pregnant before getting an abortion - and quickly divided opinion.

    While she caused a wave of support from hundreds of people voicing liberal pro-choice beliefs, she also drew criticism for her 'insensitivity' for a subject that is 'no laughing matter'.

    And many people are applauding the high profile personality for using her trademark sarcasm to directly comment on the possibility the Roe vs Wade decision may be overturned in the U.S.

    Roe vs Wade was a landmark decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on the issue of abortion.

    The Court ruled on January 22, 1973, in favour of a woman's right to have an abortion in the early stages of pregnancy.

    However Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has vowed to work to reverse Roe vs Wade, leaving the issue up to individual states to decide, and then eventually the Supreme Court.

    On the decision's anniversary, January 22, 2012, Mr Romney said: 'Today, we recommit ourselves to reversing that decision'.
    Standing ovation: Many are applauding the comedienne for using her trademark sarcasm to directly comment on the possibility the Roe vs Wade decision may be overturned in the U.S.

    Standing ovation: Many are applauding the comedienne for using her trademark sarcasm to directly comment on the possibility the Roe vs Wade decision may be overturned in the U.S.

    He continued: 'People of both political parties know that more than a million abortions a year cannot be squared with the good heart of America.'

    Reshaping national politics, the Roe vs Wade divided much of the U.S. into pro-choice and pro-life stances, with abortion previously banned in two-thirds of states, and an estimated 1.2million women a year resorting to illegal, often dangerous back-alley abortions.

    Now, 39 years later, conservative lawmakers are making unprecedented moves toward overturning the Roe vs Wade decision during this year's election race.

    A number of Republican-controlled states are currently hoping to pass The Personhood Act, giving legal personhood rights to embryos from the moment of fertilisation. The bill would see the ban of abortion extend to cases of rape, incest, and also when the mother's life is in danger.

    Ohio also amended the 'heartbeat' bill two days ago. If passed, it would equate child homicide to the abortion of a fetus with a detectable heartbeat.

    Read more

    10 causes of the Titanic tragedy

    The "unsinkable" Titanic was sunk by an iceberg, but there are other reasons why the tragedy that occurred 100 years ago this month was as tragic as it was. Even a century later, the case of the Titanic illustrates how technological failures often result from a succession of omissions, missteps and bad luck rather than one big mess-up.

    "No one thing sent the Titanic to the bottom of the North Atlantic," Richard Corfield writes in a Physics World retrospective on the disaster that caused 1,514 deaths on April 14-15, 1912. "Rather, the ship was ensnared by a perfect storm of circumstances that conspired her to her doom. Such a chain is familiar to those who study disasters — it is called an 'event cascade.'"

    The iceberg that the Titanic struck on its way from Southampton to New York is No. 1 on a top-10 list of circumstances. Here are nine other suggested circumstances from Corfield's article and other sources:

    Climate caused more icebergs: Weather conditions in the North Atlantic were particularly conducive for corralling icebergs at the intersection of the Labrador Current and the Gulf Stream, due to warmer-than-usual waters in the Gulf Stream, Richard Norris of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography told Physics World. "Oceanographically, the upshot of that was that icebergs, sea ice and growlers were concentrated in the very position where the collision happened," Norris said.

    Tides sent icebergs southward: Last month, astronomers at Texas State University at San Marcos noted that the sun, the moon and Earth were aligned in such a way that could have led to unusually high tides in January 1912. They speculated that the tides could have dislodged icebergs that were stuck in the Labrador Sea, sending more of them toward the waters traversed by the Titanic a couple of months later.

    The ship was going too fast: Many Titanicologists have said that the ship's captain, Edward J. Smith, was aiming to better the crossing time of the Olympic, the Titanic's older sibling in the White Star fleet. For some, the fact that the Titanic was sailing full speed ahead despite concerns about icebergs was Smith's biggest misstep. "Simply put, Titanic was traveling way too fast in an area known to contain ice; that's the bottom line," says Mark Nichol, webmaster for the Titanic and Other White Star Ships website.

    Iceberg warnings went unheeded: The Titanic received multiple warnings about icefields in the North Atlantic over the wireless, but Corfield notes that the last and most specific warning was not passed along by senior radio operator Jack Phillips to Captain Smith, apparently because it didn't carry the prefix "MSG" (Masters' Service Gram). That would have required a personal acknowledgment from the captain. "Phillips interpreted it as non-urgent and returned to sending passenger messages to the receiver on shore at Cape Race, Newfoundland, before it went out of range," Corfield writes.

    Pippa will ski in 56-mile marathon for charity

    A few weeks ago I came across a donation page on a very well-known charity fundraising website that appeared to belong to Pippa. It showed that she’d be braving the freezing cold temperatures in the Swedish mountains to ski in a 56-mile marathon, all in the name of charity. I was unsure what to do with the information, reasoning that if Pippa wanted it publicised, she’d have her ways and methods of getting the word out there. And if it was meant to be private, she probably didn’t want me writing about it, especially as things I write often get republished (the perils of having journalists following me on Twitter, hehehe) Anyway, now I’m happy to share this information as I’ve seen an article about Pippa’s charity ski trip in The Express newspaper. pippa middleton to raise money for charity in ski marathon
    About Pippa’s charity ski challenge:

    Pippa is competing in the Vasaloppet next Saturday with her brother James. The 56 mile ski-marathon is the world’s longest cross-country ski race that runs annually. It looks like a gruelling challenge and we wish Pippa the best of luck!
    The charity:

    The siblings are raising money for ‘Magic Breakfast’, a small charity that fights child hunger through breakfasts clubs. They deliver free breakfasts to thousands of state primary school children in the UK. You can read more about the charity and what they do by clicking here.

    Today, @OnRoyalToes (a photographer on Twitter) posted an image of Pippa from a Sunday newspaper running this story. In the picture, Pippa appears to be wearing skis, but I am unsure if this is a new picture, or cropped out of an older image (I recall seeing lots of pictures of Pippa with Will and Kate skiing in 2007/2008.) I believe it is an older image becase as Julie from our Facebook page mentions, that looks like one of Will’s Royal Protection Officers in the background. I will try and get this clarified. It may well be be a new image from @OnRoyalToes! I’ll let you know if I find out!

    Singer Robin Gibb of Bee Gees fame in coma

    Singer Robin Gibb, a founding member of the disco-era hit machine the Bee Gees, is in a coma after contracting pneumonia, his official website said on Saturday.

    A spokesman for the 62-year-old, who has been battling cancer, was not immediately available to comment on reports in the British media that Gibb had been surrounded by close family in a London hospital and may have only days to live.

    "Sadly the reports are true that Robin has contracted pneumonia and is in a coma," a statement on www.robingibb.com said.

    "We are all hoping and praying that he will pull through."

    The website has been closed down temporarily.

    An unnamed family friend told the Sun newspaper: "He has kept so positive and always believed he could beat this. Sadly, it looks like he has developed pneumonia, which is very bad in his situation."

    The tabloid said that Gibb's wife Dwina, sons Spencer and Robin-John, daughter Melissa and brother Barry were keeping a bedside vigil.

    In February, Gibb announced he had made a "spectacular" recovery from cancer, but in late March he underwent further surgery on his intestines.

    He was forced to cancel all engagements, including the world premiere earlier this month of his first classical work, co-written with Robin-John, called "The Titanic Requiem."

    Malin Akerman Ape-Covered Topless In Maxim Pictorial

    We do so dig funny hottie girl Malin Akerman. Something about that deadly combo of a girl who can make you laugh in between non-stop rounds of imagining her nekkid in your bunkbed giggling as you try desperately to find her happy spots.

    Okay, so it's mostly my personal dream, but I'm sticking with it so long as Malin Akerman keeps producing new rounds of visual delights, as in her covered topless pictorial for the upcoming edition of Maxim magazine.

    Razzle-dazzle and she-damn, Malin is looking super extra fine these days.

    Kendall Jenner Bikini Pictures of Forever Hot

    Whoa, need to be careful about what is said here of these bikini photos Kendall Jenner herself shared on her website. For although Kendall is more mature than most girls twice her age, definitely richer, more professionally involved, driving a Range Rover or Mercedes, depending on the day of the week, jetting around the world, and, as a Kardashian, responsible for pimping the shizz out of shizz for money to feed the family kitty, she is but an innocent teen girl, just trying to make her way quietly through life. Well, kinda sorta.

    In these Sinisha Nisevic shot photographs for the Frenchie periodical, Flavor magazine, Kendall shows precisely why though she's already a good earner for the family, her life remains in constant peril from her older, chunkier, shorter half-sisters who must see her as an obvious threat to their narcissistic queendoms.
    If Kendall can make it to her 18th birthday, then things are going to get really awesome, and we're taking off the censorship gloves.

    Motorola Droid 2 Gets a Bug Fixing Software Update

    Surprise surprise! Motorola and Verizon have started rolling out a new software update for the old and forgotten, Droid 2. While a new software update is definitely good news, Droid 2 owners should not get their hopes too high about an Ice Cream Sandwich update. The software update does not bring any new features, but does fix some bugs and beefs up the security of your handset.

    Below is the full change-log of the update via Android Police -:

    Device Features
    + Device is enabled with the Wireless Alerting System.
    + A Google Security Patch has been added to improve security level.
    + Fixed issue where the device may power ON without user interaction.
    + Adjusted camera settings will be saved, even after the device is powered down.
    + Resolved possible device resets while playing music.
    + Reduced Out of Memory errors.

    Email, Messaging & Data
    + Improved ability to access and receive Gmail messages when the Mobile Hotspot is turned on.
    + Addressed error that replicated thumbnails in message threads.

    Applications & Widgets
    + WAV files can be played from Visual Voice Mail.
    + Purchased ringtones are now able to be downloaded, saved and used where appropriate.

    Teachers Are Facing Death Threats And Rape Accusations From Pupils Online

    Teachers are facing death threats, abuse and allegations of serious crimes by pupils and parents through social networking sites, a poll suggests.

    One was even told her throat would be slit, while another was accused of being a rapist.

    Online abuse of teachers is widespread, with more than two-fifths (42%) of those questioned saying they had been a victim of it, a survey by the NASUWT teaching union has found.

    Of those, more than three-fifths (61.2%) said a pupil had written an insulting comment about them on a social networking or internet site, while more than a third (38.1%) said a student had made comments about their competence or performance as a teacher.

    And nearly one in 10 (9.1%) said they had faced allegations that they behaved inappropriately with pupils.

    One teacher told the survey that a student had posted that they were going to "slit my throat", while a second said a pupil had written "my English teacher should actually die" and a third said a student had posted that a teacher "is a rapist".

    Another teacher had faced claims that they were unable to do their job and should be sacked. The teacher told the survey there had been "lies about me: saying inappropriate things to pupils, insulting pupils, having sexually absurd behaviours. Generally defaming and insulting me, spreading rumours about me throughout the school."

    In some of these cases, action was taken against those responsible.

    The poll, which questioned 1,522 teachers, found that the majority of pupils responsible (60%) were aged between 11 and 16, although some teachers reported comments by primary schoolchildren.

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