Author Archives: chessNwine
via Deadspin.com – Very ballsy piece of reporting here
Notre Dame’s Manti Te’o, the stories said, played this season under a terrible burden. A Mormon linebacker who led his Catholic school’s football program back to glory, Te’o was whipsawed between personal tragedies along the way. In the span of six hours in September, as Sports Illustrated told it, Te’o learned first of the death of his grandmother, Annette Santiago, and then of the death of his girlfriend, Lennay Kekua.
Kekua, 22 years old, had been in a serious car accident in California, and then had been diagnosed with leukemia. SI‘s Pete Thamel described how Te’o would phone her in her hospital room and stay on the line with her as he slept through the night. “Her relatives told him that at her lowest points, as she fought to emerge from a coma, her breathing rate would increase at the sound of his voice,” Thamel wrote.
Upon receiving the news of the two deaths, Te’o went out and led the Fighting Irish to a 20-3 upset of Michigan State, racking up 12 tackles. It was heartbreaking and inspirational. Te’o would appear on ESPN’s College GameDay to talk about the letters Kekua had written him during her illness. He would send a heartfelt letter to the parents of a sick child, discussing his experience with disease and grief. The South Bend Tribune wrote an article describing the young couple’s fairytale meeting—she, a Stanford student; he, a Notre Dame star—after a football game outside Palo Alto.
Did you enjoy the uplifiting story, the tale of a man who responded to adversity by becoming one of the top players of the game? If so, stop reading.
Manti Te’o did lose his grandmother this past fall. Annette Santiago died on Sept. 11, 2012, at the age of 72, according to Social Security Administration records in Nexis. But there is no SSA record there of the death of Lennay Marie Kekua, that day or any other. Her passing, recounted so many times in the national media, produces no obituary or funeral announcement in Nexis, and no mention in the Stanford student newspaper.
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via Washington Monthly
The untold story of how the administration tried to stand up to big agricultural companies on behalf of independent farmers, and lost.
By Lina Khan
In May 2010, Garry Staples left his chicken farm in Steele, Alabama, to take part in a historic hearing in Normal, an hour and a half away.
The decision to go wasn’t easy. The big processing companies that farmers rely on for their livelihood had made it known that even attending one of these hearings, much less speaking out at one, could mean trouble. For a chicken farmer, that’s no trivial thing. Getting on a processing company’s bad side can deal a serious blow to a farmer’s income—and even lose him the farm entirely. Still, Staples, a former Special Forces commander, and a number of other farmers decided to risk it. Many felt it was their only chance to talk directly to some of the highest-ranking officials in the country, including Attorney General Eric Holder and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, about the abusive practices now common in their industry. It was a chance, finally, to get some relief.
Staples and other farmers described a system that is worse in certain respects than sharecropping. It works like this: to do business nowadays, most chicken farmers need to contract with a processing company. The company delivers them feed and chicks, which farmers raise into full-size birds. The same company then buys those same birds back when they are full grown. The problem is that the big processing company is usually the only game in town. So it can—and usually does—call all the shots, dictating everything from what facilities a farmer builds on his farm to the price he receives for his full-size chickens.
in West Kendall, Florida, a suburb of Miami
Sandy Gas Woes Continue: People Trading Gas For Sex On Craigslist
via CBS NEWS LOCAL
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - How far would go to get gas?
Long gas station lines and empty gas pumps have plagued drivers across New York and New Jersey since Superstorm Sandy slammed into the East Coast last Monday, leaving a gas shortage across the region.
Stories of price gouging and fights at gas stations have also been commonplace. But now it seems people — men in particular — are finding new ways to take advantage of gas-seeking Tri-State residents: Sex.
The Honey Badger won’t be making an appearance for LSU this fall.
Mathieu was one of the top playmakers for the Tigers during last year’s undefeated regular season and adopted the Honey Badger moniker as part of his flashy style.
He shined on both defense and kick returns on his way to finishing fifth in the voting for the Heisman Trophy.
Mathieu was suspended for one game against Auburn last season for an undisclosed violation of team rules. Media reports indicated Mathieu failed a drug test.
You’re looking at a recent photo of Eagle Stadium, in Allen, Texas, a northern suburb of Dallas. The stadium, three years in the works, will seat 18,000 when it opens later this month. It’s got two luxury suites, a pro-quality press box, a 3,400-square-foot HD video scoreboard—and tickets will be just $10 a game for the all-bleacher seating. This is Texas football.
According to Fox Sports Southwest, Eagle Stadium is only the fifth-largest high school field in the state, though that includes an MLS arena, two 1930s WPA projects, and Memorial Stadium in Mesquite, which is shared by five schools. So actual single-purpose prep stadiums don’t get any bigger or nicer than this one.
TOKYO (AP) — A new report says the world’s appetite for beer hit a new high last year, with China leading the way.
The report released Wednesday by the research arm of a major Japanese brewery said it was the 27th consecutive year that beer production marked an increase. It attributed the rise to robust demand in Asia and developing countries.
Pizza chain Papa Johns told shareholders that President Obama’s health care law will cost consumers more on their pizza.
On a conference call last week, CEO and founder John Schnatter (a Mitt Romney supporter and fundraiser) said the health care law’s changes — set to go into effect in 2014 — will result in higher costs for the company — which they vowed to pass onto consumers.
“Our best estimate is that the Obamacare will cost 11 to 14 cents per pizza, or 15 to 20 cents per order from a corporate basis,” Schnatter said.
“We’re not supportive of Obamacare, like most businesses in our industry. But our business model and unit economics are about as ideal as you can get for a food company to absorb Obamacare,” he said.
Fiona McLaren, 59, had kept an old painting in her Scottish farmhouse for decades. She reportedly didn’t think much of the painting, which had been given to her as a gift by her father. But after she finally decided to have the painting appraised, some experts are speculating that it may in fact be a 500-year-old painting by Leonardo da Vinci and potentially worth more than $150 million.
“I showed it to him [auctioneer Harry Robertson] and he was staggered, speechless save for a sigh of exclamation,” said Ms. McLaren, according to The People.
The Daily Mail says the painting may be of Mary Magdalene holding a young child. The painting is now undergoing further analysis by experts at the Cambridge University and the Hamilton Kerr Institute, who will attempt to uncover its exact age and origins.
Bolt won his second straight Olympic gold medal in the 100 meters with an Olympic-record time of 9.63 seconds.
Bolt joined American Carl Lewis as the only men to repeat in the 100 meters. Fellow Jamaican Yohan Blake took the silver, while American Justin Gatlin took bronze.
OAK CREEK, Wis. (AP) — An unidentified gunman killed six people at a Sikh temple in suburban Milwaukee on Sunday in a rampage that left terrified congregants hiding in closets and others texting friends outside for help. The suspect was killed outside the temple in a shootout with police officers.
Police called the attack an act of domestic terrorism, but did not provide any details about the gunman or suggest a possible motive. Oak Creek Police Chief John Edwards did not say whether he specifically targeted the Sikh community.
DROPS Battery Charges
Cuba Gooding Jr. just caught a huge break after allegedly pushing a female bartender in New Orleans this week — the bartender has decided to drop her battery charges against the actor.
TMZ broke the story … an arrest warrant was issued for Cuba for allegedly roughing up the bartender at The Old Absinthe House on Bourbon Street early Tuesday morning when she asked him to leave.
The bartender told police Cuba had grown irate at several bar patrons for taking his photo … and that’s when she told him to take a hike.
Cuba met with police officials yesterday and the arrest warrant was revoked — but he was issued a summons to appear in court to answer to the allegations.
Lucky for Cuba, it now looks like he’ll get off scot-free — because bar managers at the Old Absinthe have released a statement, saying the bartender involved in the dispute has decided not to press charges.
There may be more than 83 million fake users on Facebook, the giant social network has revealed.
Duplicate accounts, people who have an account in addition to a principal account, make up 4.8 percent of the “fake” accounts, as of June 30, 2012.
There are also “user-misclassified accounts” (2.4 percent) — pet accounts or a personal profile for business — and “undesirable accounts” (1.5 percent) that are intended for spamming, etc.
Fake users are a huge concern to Facebook because it generates a majority of its revenue from advertising. BBC.com says Facebook is coming under increased scrutiny over the worth of its advertising model which promotes the gathering of “likes” from users.
click here for definition of “glory hole”
No new QE…and stocks are down. Hawkish?
For immediate release
Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June suggests that economic activity decelerated somewhat over the first half of this year. Growth in employment has been slow in recent months, and the unemployment rate remains elevated. Business fixed investment has continued to advance. Household spending has been rising at a somewhat slower pace than earlier in the year. Despite some further signs of improvement, the housing sector remains depressed. Inflation has declined since earlier this year, mainly reflecting lower prices of crude oil and gasoline, and longer-term inflation expectations have remained stable.
Consistent with its statutory mandate, the Committee seeks to foster maximum employment and price stability. The Committee expects economic growth to remain moderate over coming quarters and then to pick up very gradually. Consequently, the Committee anticipates that the unemployment rate will decline only slowly toward levels that it judges to be consistent with its dual mandate. Furthermore, strains in global financial markets continue to pose significant downside risks to the economic outlook. The Committee anticipates that inflation over the medium term will run at or below the rate that it judges most consistent with its dual mandate.
To support a stronger economic recovery and to help ensure that inflation, over time, is at the rate most consistent with its dual mandate, the Committee expects to maintain a highly accommodative stance for monetary policy. In particular, the Committee decided today to keep the target range for the federal funds rate at 0 to 1/4 percent and currently anticipates that economic conditions–including low rates of resource utilization and a subdued outlook for inflation over the medium run--are likely to warrant exceptionally low levels for the federal funds rate at least through late 2014.
The Committee also decided to continue through the end of the year its program to extend the average maturity of its holdings of securities as announced in June, and it is maintaining its existing policy of reinvesting principal payments from its holdings of agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities in agency mortgage-backed securities. The Committee will closely monitor incoming information on economic and financial developments and will provide additional accommodation as needed to promote a stronger economic recovery and sustained improvement in labor market conditions in a context of price stability.
Voting for the FOMC monetary policy action were: Ben S. Bernanke, Chairman; William C. Dudley, Vice Chairman; Elizabeth A. Duke; Dennis P. Lockhart; Sandra Pianalto; Jerome H. Powell; Sarah Bloom Raskin; Jeremy C. Stein; Daniel K. Tarullo; John C. Williams; and Janet L. Yellen. Voting against the action was Jeffrey M. Lacker, who preferred to omit the description of the time period over which economic conditions are likely to warrant an exceptionally low level of the federal funds rate.