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    News Round-Up: December 2, 2013

    Monday, December 2nd, 2013

    Amazon leads the way in the ultimate futuristic shopping experience; friends, family, and fans mourn the tragic deaths of Paul Walker and Roger Rodas; and a train flies off the tracks in the Bronx. Meanwhile, Tom Daley and Maria Bello both proudly come out about their homosexuality.

    -Sandy + Maura

     

    CRUCIAL

    Amazon testing delivery by drone, CEO Bezos sayshttp://rtvote.com/1htdgaD
    Awesome, futuristic tech AND the perfect online shopping experience? If Amazon can pull this off, then “bravo!”. The commerce company’s CEO, Jeff Bezos, said they are testing the delivery of packages using drones. The idea is to have small, unmanned aircrafts, dubbed octocopters, pick up packages at Amazon’s fulfillment centers and then deliver them to customers 30 minutes or less after they hit the “Buy” button. The service will be called Prime Air, and Bezos estimates it will take off in as little as three or four years.

    LA coroner can’t ID Paul Walker’s bodyhttp://rtvote.com/1fZuVXa
    Rest in peace, Paul and Roger. Our hearts and condolences go out to their friends and family. Paul Walker, 40, and Roger Rodas, 38, passed away Saturday in a tragic car accident. The friends took a Porsche out for a test-run after Rodas’s employees said there was something wrong with the stalling vehicle. While troubleshooting the car, it crashed and was so badly engulfed in flames that the coroner cannot ID Paul’s body without his dental records.

    New York train derails; “gravel came flying up,” survivor says,http://rtvote.com/IoLRIi
    A train derailed in the Bronx Sunday morning, killing four and injuring at least 67. About 150 people were on board, and many are traumatized from the violent incident. The train came off the tracks, twisted, and turned rubble and smoke into the passenger cars.

    Walmart’s Black Friday Going About As Badly As You’d Expect,http://rtvote.com/1fZDeC4
    People need to chill. It’s always sad to hear about people assaulting one another… but when they’re doing so over a discounted television, that’s when you know there’s something wrong. The Instagram videos in this article display some of the aggression that played out in Walmart stores during BlackFriday. And, believe it or not, they weren’t limited to just one Walmart!

    Obama’s solution helps bring peace to military conflict,http://rtvote.com/18VcyhK
    A new White House policy, which went into effect on November 15, allows the undocumented spouses, children, and parents of military personnel to be “paroled” into the United States. Once paroled, these relatives will be able to apply for green cards without having to first return to their home countries. Military officials approve the policy because they say it lessens the stress that combat personnel may experience when trying to balance serving their country and helping their relatives navigate the immigration system.

     

    CULTURAL

    Paul Walker’s Daughter Meadow “Still in Shock” Over Actor’s Death: How the 15-Year-Old Is Coping, http://rtvote.com/IFXwTj

    Tom Daley Comes Out in Video Revealing He Is in Gay Relationship,http://rtvote.com/1k2fKtq

    Maria Bello is Gay: Actress Reveals Longtime Relationship With a Woman, Writes That She Considers Herself a “Whatever,” http://rtvote.com/1c79SuD

    Zac Efron Skateboards in L.A. – See the First Pic Since Actor Broke His Jaw,http://rtvote.com/1jcztsO

    sandywu
    Bio:

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: November 13, 2013

    Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

    A popular Washington Post columnist and India’s top policeman find themselves in boiling hot water after making some controversial remarks (on separate topics); Haiyan’s survivors are struggling to get food and water, despite international aid; and Healthcare.gov will probably not reach its November 30th deadline. Meanwhile, Zac Efron broke his jaw (ouch), and a Beyonce fan dishes on trying out one of Queen Bey’s scary-intense diets.

    -Sandy + Maura

     

    CRUCIAL 

    India’s Top Policeman Draws Fire With Rape Remarkhttp://rtvote.com/HTOr97
    Someone please nominate this man for the Stupidest Comment of the Year award. At a conference about illegal sports betting and gambling, India’s Central Bureau of Investigation chief Ranjit Sinha said that if the state could not stop gambling, then it could at least make some revenue by legalizing it. He then proceeded to say, ‘If you cannot enforce the ban on betting, it is like saying, “If you can’t prevent rape, you enjoy it.” Activists are outraged, seeing as this man is in charge of several rape investigations and that protests in India have grown rapidly since the fatal gang rape of a student this past year.

    Controversy over Richard Cohen’s comments on the de Blasio family,http://rtvote.com/HY7r5z
    Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen, 72, has been under intense scrutiny for his Tuesday column, which sounds a lot like Cohen has something against interracial marriages and homosexuals. Cohen insists that he was not expressing his personal views, but those of Tea Party conservatives. As news outlets continue to condemn him, Cohen’s boss at the Post defends one of his most popular columnists.

    Lawlessness, damage leave Filipinos strugglinghttp://rtvote.com/19kpb1l
    Food and water are still struggling to reach the typhoon’s survivors as roads and ports are destroyed, and trucks have no fuel to run on. Mobs of people have begun looting warehouses for food. Even though massive amounts of supplies have arrived on nearby islands and parts of Leyte, they cannot be moved into the city in large amounts. Most Filipinos have been left homeless, and the city of Tacloban will be without power for three months.

    Troubled HeathCare.gov unlikely to work fully by end of November,http://rtvote.com/1buISII
    It doesn’t look like HeathCare.gov will be ready by the end of November, like the Obama administration has promised. Software problems seem to be more difficult to resolve than expected. Government workers and technical contractors have advised people to use other means to enroll in healthcare plans so the website is not overburdened.

    Ryan Ferguson Update: Mo. man jailed for nearly 10 years released,http://rtvote.com/HRksyj
    Ryan Ferguson, 29, was released from custody after being jailed for almost ten years for a crime he claims he did not commit. Originally convicted in 2005 for the murder of Columbia Daily Tribune sports editor Kent Heitholt, an appeals court threw out the conviction last week because Boone County prosecutors violated federal law by failing to share several pieces of evidence that pointed to Ferguson’s innocence in 2005.

     

    CULTURAL

    Zac Efron’s Broken Jaw: “He’s Going to Be OK,” Says Pal Michael B. Jordan,http://rtvote.com/1hG0t5U

    Demi Lovato: People Would Be “Shocked” to Hear My Drug and Alcohol Abuse Stories, http://rtvote.com/1dqhDhQ

    Beyonce Fan Tries Singer’s Diet, Loses 10 Pounds in 10 Days,http://rtvote.com/1bDQAP0

    Alec Baldwin’s Alleged Stalker Genevieve Sabourin Gets 30 Days in Jail for Courtroom Interruptions, http://rtvote.com/1aTEYe2

    sandywu
    Bio:

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com



    News Round-Up: October 30, 2013

    Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

    HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius apologizes at a hearing; retired Justice Sandra Day O’Connor officiates a gay marriage ceremony; and a wine shortage hits the world (oh, say it ain’t so). Meanwhile, Chris Brown returns to rehab, and Ashton Kutcher expands his ever-growing resumé with Lenovo.

    -Sandy + Maura
     

    CRUCIAL

    Health chief Sebelius apologizes for botched websitehttp://rtvote.com/1gciabr
    At today’s hearing with the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Kathleen Sebelius, the Health and Human Services Secretary, formally apologized for the technical problems Healthcare.gov has been experiencing. More Republicans are calling for her resignation, and the panel intensely scrutinized Sebelius and the sub par performance of the healthcare website. The Obama administration has vowed to fix these issues by the end of November.

    After Retired Justice O’Connor Performs Their Wedding, Gay Couple Celebrates “Wonderful Day”,http://rtvote.com/1gcl146
    Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor officiated the wedding of Jeff Trammell and Stuart Serkin. She is the second official of the High Court to have officiated a gay marriage ceremony; the first was current Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Once considered a conservative justice, O’Connor was nominated to the bench by President Reagan and retired in 2006.

    Thirsty? There’s a global wine shortagehttp://rtvote.com/1h0vXmS
    Brace yourselves. There’s a wine shortage in the world. Global production fell by more than 5% last year, the lowest it’s been since the 1960s, while demand continues to increase. The main cause for the decrease in production was bad weather in France and Argentina. The French consume the most wine, followed by Americans and then the Chinese. Although the U.S. wine making industry is growing, don’t expect global wine production to improve anytime soon.

    Brazilian Footballer’s Decapitated Head Reportedly Sent to Wife by Drug Lordshttp://rtvote.com/1gcpnZ6
    Former pro Brazilian soccer player Joao Rodrigo Silva Santos was kidnapped and decapitated by suspected drug traffickers in Rio de Janeiro. His head was sent to his wife’s residence on the morning of October 29. Police are unsure why Santos was targeted. Brazilian soccer is often linked to gang activity.

    Baylor students seek to remove gay ban from student codehttp://rtvote.com/1h0AMfN
    The student senate of Baylor University, a private Baptist school, voted to propose that university officials remove “homosexual acts” from the school’s sexual misconduct code. The proposal will go on to the Baylor University Board of Regents for review. Seems like a win for progress and equality? Not quite. One Baylor student says this rewording does not mean they are advocating homosexuality; they are simply not pinpointing homosexuals anymore: “It is saying homosexual acts are wrong but heterosexual acts committed outside of marriage are also wrong.”
     

    PUNDITS

    Joanne Bamberger discusses how certain voting models are compromising the rights of married or divorced women in “Voter ID laws threaten women’s rights,” http://rtvote.com/1gcv2hO

    Sally Kohn explains why losing your current healthcare plan under Obamacare is not something to cry over in “A canceled health plan is a good thing,” http://rtvote.com/1f482P4

     
    CULTURAL

    Chris Brown Kisses Karrueche Tran Before Heading to Rehab, http://rtvote.com/1f48cWG

    Kristin Cavallari Pregnant with Baby No. 2, http://rtvote.com/1h0PUtI

    Former Full House Child Star Blake McIver Now a Sexy Go-Go Dancer, http://rtvote.com/1h0Qec0

    Ashton Kutcher Hired as a Product Engineer to Help Design Tablets for Lenovo, http://rtvote.com/1f48Lj7

    sandywu
    Bio:

    Email the author at: blog(at)rockthevote.com