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Football / NBC Sports Network Outbids Fox Soccer for EPL Broadcast Rights
« on: October 26, 2012, 07:17:52 PM »

OCTOBER 26, 2012, 6:53 PM
NBC Sports Group Outbids Fox for E.P.L. Rights

Fox Soccer has lost the rights to broadcast English Premier League games in the United States, the latest blow to a channel that once dominated the soccer scene on American television.

Fox and ESPN jointly bid for the three-year contract starting in 2013 to show E.P.L. games, but they appear to have been outbid by the NBC Sports Group, which has been eager to find must-see sports shows for its recently rebranded NBC Sports Network.

Fox has broadcast the E.P.L. in the United States for nearly two decades, growing along with the world's most popular league. ESPN broadcast about 80 of Fox's E.P.L. games each year under license.

But NBC has bid about $85 million a year for the new E.P.L. rights, just under four times more than Fox currently pays for the rights, according to a person with knowledge of the negotiations. Greg Hughes, a spokesman for NBC Sports Group, declined to comment.

If NBCSN wins the E.P.L. rights, which will be announced in the coming days, it would boost their struggling lineup. NBCSN wildly exceeded all its past records during the London Summer Olympics, but it is without any N.H.L. games because of the ongoing lockout. Its other programming includes Major League Soccer, cycling, boxing, college sports, bull-riding, hunting and fishing, as well as a variety of studio shows.

But it does not carry N.F.L games, and the NBC Sports Group chose not to spend lavishly to acquire the rights to Major League Baseball.

Sports Business Daily first reported that Fox and ESPN had been outbid by NBC Universal.

In a statement, Lou D'Ermilio, a spokesman for Fox, said: "We were disappointed to learn today that English Premier League has elected to move forward with a different media partner despite Fox Sports Media Group's aggressive bid."

Fox Soccer still has the rights to broadcast a sizable number of games, including the UEFA Champions League, UEFA's Europa League, the F.A. Cup, the Concacaf Champions League and Gold Cup. Fox also will broadcast the World Cup and Women's World Cup beginning in 2015.

Viewership of E.P.L. games on Fox Soccer peaked in the 2009-10 season at 149,000 viewers. This season, the league's games have averaged 136,000 viewers.

beIN Sport, a new sports network started by Al Jazeera that has aggressively bid for soccer rights, declined to say whether it has bid for the United States rights to the E.P.L.

In August, beIN Sport won the rights to broadcast the top leagues from Spain, Italy and France in the United States, as well as the American national team's World Cup qualifying road games. GolTV lost the rights to La Liga, Spain's top league, and Fox Soccer was outbid for the rights to show Ligue 1 from France and Serie A from Italy.

beIN Sport is available in far fewer households than Fox Soccer, ESPN and NBC Sports Network.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/bEVuELyZ0lU" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/bEVuELyZ0lU</a>

Technical Support / Quick, Hide the BlackBerry... it's too Uncool
« on: October 18, 2012, 01:13:29 PM »
The BlackBerry as Black Sheep


Rachel Crosby speaks about her BlackBerry phone the way someone might speak of an embarrassing relative.

“I’m ashamed of it,” said Ms. Crosby, a Los Angeles sales representative who said she had stopped pulling out her BlackBerry at cocktail parties and conferences. In meetings, she says she hides her BlackBerry beneath her iPad for fear clients will see it and judge her.

The BlackBerry was once proudly carried by the high-powered and the elite, but those who still hold one today say the device has become a magnet for mockery and derision from those with iPhones and the latest Android phones. Research in Motion may still be successful selling BlackBerrys in countries like India and Indonesia, but in the United States the company is clinging to less than 5 percent of the smartphone market — down from a dominating 50 percent just three years ago. The company’s future all depends on a much-delayed new phone coming next year; meanwhile RIM recorded a net loss of $753 million in the first half of the year compared with a profit of more than $1 billion a year earlier.

Among the latest signs of the loss of cachet: One of the first steps Marissa Mayer took as Yahoo’s newly appointed chief executive to remake the company’s stodgy image was to trade in employees’ BlackBerrys for iPhones and Androids. BlackBerrys may still linger in Washington, Wall Street and the legal profession, but in Silicon Valley they are as rare as a necktie.

As the list shrinks of friends who once regularly communicated using BlackBerry’s private messaging service, called BBM, many a BlackBerry owner will not mince words about how they feel about their phone.

“I want to take a bat to it,” Ms. Crosby said, after waiting for her phone’s browser to load for the third minute, only to watch the battery die. “You can’t do anything with it. You’re supposed to, but it’s all a big lie.”

The cultural divide between BlackBerry loyalists and everyone else has only grown more extreme over the last year as companies that previously issued employees BlackBerrys — and only BlackBerrys — have started surrendering to employee demands for iPhones and Android-powered smartphones.

Goldman Sachs recently gave its employees the option to use an iPhone. Covington & Burling, a major law firm, did the same at the urging of associates. Even the White House, which used the BlackBerry for security reasons, recently started supporting the iPhone. (Some staff members suspect that decision was influenced by President Obama, who now prefers his iPad for national security briefings. A spokesman for the White House declined to comment.)

Out in the world, the insults continue. Victoria Gossage, a 28-year-old hedge fund marketer, said she recently attended a work retreat at Piping Rock Club, an upscale country club in Locust Valley, N.Y., and asked the concierge for a phone charger. “First he said, ‘Sure.’ Then he saw my phone and — in this disgusted tone — said, ‘Oh no, no, not for that.’ ”

“You get used to that kind of rejection,” she said.

“BlackBerry users are like Myspace users,” sneers Craig Robert Smith, a Los Angeles musician. “They probably still chat on AOL Instant Messenger.”

BlackBerry outcasts say that, increasingly, they suffer from shame and public humiliation as they watch their counterparts mingle on social networking apps that are not available to them, take higher-resolution photos, and effortlessly navigate streets — and the Internet — with better GPS and faster browsing. More indignity comes in having to outsource tasks like getting directions, booking travel, making restaurant reservations and looking up sports scores to their exasperated iPhone and Android-carting partners, friends and colleagues.

“I feel absolutely helpless,” said Ms. Gossage. “You’re constantly watching people do all these things on their phones and all I have going for me is my family’s group BBM chats.”

Ryan Hutto, a director at a San Francisco health information company, said he frequently depended on others, often his wife, for music playlists, navigation and sports scores. “After two or three questions, people start to get irritated,” Mr. Hutto said.

His wife, Shannon Hutto, says with a sigh: “Anytime we go anywhere, I always have to pull up the map. If we’re searching for a restaurant, I pull up the Yelp app. If we need a reservation, I pull up OpenTable. I kind of feel like his personal assistant.”

Still, a few BlackBerry users say they’re sticking with the device, mainly because of the BlackBerry’s efficient, physical keyboard. “I use my BlackBerry by choice,” said Lance Fenton, a 32-year-old investor who frequently travels and needs to send e-mails from the road. “I can’t type e-mails on touch-screen phones.”

Mr. Fenton said he could not wrap his head around iPhone fever. “I constantly ask people, ‘What is so great about it?’ and they have these nonsensical answers,” he said. “Someone told me I’m missing out on some app that maps their ski runs. I ski four days a year. On the road, I don’t need a ski app.”

RIM’s most recent efforts to hold on to loyal customers, as well as software developers building apps for its next generation of phones scheduled to be available next year, have elicited universal cringes. In a recent promotional video, Alec Saunders, RIM’s vice president for developer relations, is shown belting out a rock song titled “Devs, BlackBerry Is Going to Keep on Loving You,” a riff on the 1981 power ballad by REO Speedwagon “Keep on Loving You.”

“This is the sign of a desperate company,” said Nick Mindel, a 26-year-old investment analyst. “Come on, BlackBerry, I always had some faith, but you just lost a customer. Frankly, I don’t think they can afford to lose many more.”

After eight years with a BlackBerry, Mr. Mindel said he just joined the wait list for the iPhone 5. When it arrives, he said, "I’m considering removing my BlackBerry battery, pouring in cement, and using the BlackBerry as an actual paperweight.”


Entertainment & Culture Discussion / Jamaican Maury... LOL!
« on: September 03, 2012, 10:38:39 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/5eujvwpT-GE&amp;feature=player_embedded" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/5eujvwpT-GE&amp;feature=player_embedded</a>

Entertainment & Culture Discussion / Caribbean Swagga
« on: August 13, 2012, 02:21:30 PM »
LOVE this!!

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/4KjxO22PXy4&amp;feature=colike" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/4KjxO22PXy4&amp;feature=colike</a>

Olympic Discussion / The Official London 2012 Olympics Thread
« on: July 26, 2012, 09:34:04 AM »

I know we have several threads following the activities of TnT athletes at the games already, so this thread is not intended to detract from those other ones, but rather to serve as a repository for all other noteworthy Olympic news and results.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/pRvciUIV0t8&amp;feature=related" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/pRvciUIV0t8&amp;feature=related</a>

This yute juss sick wid it den... and I ent even a skateboarder, but been following his career the last 2-3 years.

General Discussion / SYRE- Bluetooth iPod Nano watch case
« on: June 13, 2012, 07:05:34 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/drrrEjzJLI8" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/drrrEjzJLI8</a>

Cool gadget for those of you who want to incorporate your nano with your workouts.  Anye is a pardna of mine, but aside from that, we need more black folks involved technology. They out in Silicone Valley trying to get their product out, so please share on your FB pages.

P.S. Mods feel free to move after a couple days (if this isn't the right forum for it).

Entertainment & Culture Discussion / Japanese Reggae and Soca Fete
« on: June 06, 2012, 10:51:46 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/eeo53tPO0pA&amp;feature=relmfu" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/eeo53tPO0pA&amp;feature=relmfu</a>

This dude is real kicks...  :rotfl:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/z-NjRtw3SBA" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/z-NjRtw3SBA</a>

**Warning graphic violence**

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/HV0oPI1Nf1k&amp;feature=related" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/HV0oPI1Nf1k&amp;feature=related</a>

‘It gives me gooseflesh’: Remarkable find in South Side attic


Staff Reporter-kjanssen@suntimes.com Last Modified: Mar 11, 2012 03:33AM

Quote from: Suntimes

• First African American to graduate from Harvard, in 1870.

• Appointed professor of Philosophy, University of South Carolina, in 1873.

• Admitted to practice law before Supreme Court of South Carolina, in 1876.

• Made dean of Howard University School of Law, in 1879.

• Helped elect several Republican presidents and in 1896 helped persuade the Republican Party to give an unqualified condemnation of lynching.

• Appointed to work for the foreign service in Vladivostok, Russia, in 1898.

• Awarded the Order of the Double Dragon for his services to China, in 1902.

It wasn’t much more than a ghost house by the time Rufus McDonald got the call.

The front door of the abandoned home near 75th and Sangamon was unlocked and swinging in the wind.

Drug addicts, squatters and stray animals carried away whatever they wanted. Everything that wasn’t termite-infested seemed to have been stolen. Even the copper pipes were gone.

But the scavengers missed something incredible.

Hidden in the attic that McDonald was contracted to clear before the home’s 2009 demolition was a trunk. Inside were the papers of Richard T. Greener, the first African American to graduate from Harvard.

“I didn’t know who he was,” said McDonald, 51. “But as soon as I found out, I knew this was a story that had to be told.”

Historians thought the documents were lost in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake because Greener had passed through at the time. They were astonished to learn in the past week that Greener’s 1870 Harvard diploma — water-damaged but intact — his law license, photos and papers connected to his diplomatic role in Russia and his friendship with President Ulysses S. Grant have survived.

“It gives me gooseflesh,” said Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., who leads Harvard’s W.E.B. DuBois Institute for African-American Research. “Greener was a leading intellectual of his time. It’s a remarkable discovery.”

His graduation blazed a trail for black Harvard intellectuals including Gates’ friend, President Barack Obama, the professor added. “He was the voice before DuBois and the president’s predecessor.”

Declined money on the spot

When McDonald found the steamer trunk in the Englewood attic, he suspected the contents inside were important but wasn’t sure.

The presence of the 1853 book Autographs for Freedom inside added to the intrigue.

Members of his clean-out crew told him to throw the heavy trunk and its contents away.

McDonald knew better.

He packed up the documents in a brown-paper bag and hauled them out of the house, bringing them to a book expert on the North Side.

“Do you know who Richard Greener was?” McDonald was asked. When he told him he didn’t, the expert explained Greener’s importance.

McDonald was offered money for the documents on the spot, but he declined.

He went back to the Englewood home, hoping to retrieve the steamer trunk. By then, however, not only was the trunk gone, so was the entire house. Demolished.

How the documents got to the Englewood attic is a question that might never be answered. Greener lived the final years of his life with cousins in Hyde Park. But there’s no evidence he ever lived in the Englewood home, which is nearly six miles away.

Sadness in personal life

If Greener’s importance as a “black first” and his public roles as a brilliant attorney, scholar, diplomat and orator devoted to racial equality secure his place in history, his private life was tainted by sadness, historians say.

Though Greener was helped by a handful of whites, he was resented by some blacks and was trapped under a glass ceiling that prevented him from becoming a more significant figure, they add. The discovery could encourage a fresh look at his legacy.

Born to the son of a slave in Philadelphia in 1844, he left school at 14 and became a porter at a Boston hotel.

A pair of white businessmen took him under their wing and helped him enroll at Harvard in 1865.

Harvard admitted him as “an experiment,” according to historian Michael Mounter, who wrote a Ph.D. thesis on Greener. Greener initially struggled but eventually thrived. He made allies including U.S. Sen. Charles Sumner and won prizes for public speaking and essays.

In 1873, he was appointed professor of philosophy at the University of South Carolina. He dodged an assassination attempt by a “red shirt” at an 1876 rally, but lost his job a year later when racist Democrats were elected.

Became law school dean

Married to Genevieve Ida Fleet, with whom he had six children, he became dean of Howard University’s law school; worked at the U.S. Treasury and in Republican politics and law in Washington, and befriended President Ulysses S. Grant, whose memorial he helped build.

A friend and sometimes rival of other leading African Americans of his era, including Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington, he wrote in 1879: “The negro has received so many hard knocks, and experienced so little consideration, charity, or justice from those who criticize him, that he has no quarter to give.”

In an 1894 essay he pointedly renamed the “Negro Problem” as “The White Problem.”

Sick of Washington politics, in 1898 he accepted a post from President William McKinley in Vladivostok, Russia. Leaving his family, he took a Japanese common-law wife, Mishi Kawashima, with whom he had three children. He was praised for his efforts as a U.S. agent during the Russo-Japanese war, but he was fired in 1905 after a smear campaign.

From 1909 until his death in 1922 he lived with cousins at 5237 S. Ellis in Chicago. Cut off from both his families, he was likely visited just once in Hyde Park by his daughter Belle da Costa Greene, according to biographer Heidi Ardizzone.

Along with the rest of Greener’s first family, da Costa Greene — the chic director of banker J.P. Morgan’s personal library — changed her last name to pass as white in elite New York society. “Greener had so much intelligence and passion and to see his equally talented children not have their achievements counted as African American must have been heartbreaking,” Ardizzone said.

Da Costa Greene burned her own personal papers before her death in 1950. The discovery of some of her father’s documents in an Englewood attic is “every historian’s dream,” Ardizzone said.

McDonald “is to be commended” for his discovery, Gates added.

Harvard would love documents

Harvard, the DuSable Museum of African American History, the Pierpont Morgan Library, the Black Metropolis Research Consortium and Greener’s granddaughter from his second marriage, Evelyn Bausman, 75, of Connecticut, all are interested in the documents. Bausman called the find “amazing.”

Gates — known for his 2009 “beer summit” on the White House lawn with President Obama and a Cambridge cop who arrested him on his own doorstep — says he would “love to bring the artifacts to Harvard.” He said he would offer “a fair price” but warned McDonald not to expect to get rich.

McDonald’s own education ended when he graduated from Calumet High School. But he says his research into the story behind the documents has made him proud of Greener’s story.

“You have to wonder, if Greener hadn’t graduated from Harvard, would Obama have gone to law school there?” he said. “Would Obama be president?”

Copyright © 2012 — Sun-Times Media, LLC

Trinbago, NBA & World Basketball / NBA All-Star Weekend
« on: February 24, 2012, 08:25:56 PM »
Kicked off tonight with the All-Star Celebrity game... pure niceness.  The game itself was a blowout but I ketch nuff kicks.  Kevin Hart end up winning "MVP", fuh what I dunno, but he sure had me cracking up.  Dude is a straight fool lol.  Near de end ah de game he get heself throw out and try tuh rip off he jersey only to get tangle up in it  :rotfl: :rotfl:  Ah mean, part ah it was all act... but man, what a naturally funny dude.

Other thoughts... Obama let Arne Duncan off de plantation long enough to fly out and look like ah all star tonight.  Man was shooting, dribbling, blocking shots, dishing passes, stealing ball.  Kevin Hart rightly call him up to share in de "award" at the end.

Penny Hardaway still looking young, but de body fat creeping up.  Tim Hardaway game fall apart, Chris Mullins too... but not as much as Nick Anderson.  Man geh fat and cyah buy ah basket from distance.. didn't stop him from trying though. 

Good fun.

Slam Dunk and three-point tomorrow night.

General Discussion / Mountain Biker gets pwned by an Antelope
« on: October 11, 2011, 11:48:52 PM »
...well, by a Hartebees, but same difference

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/S2oymHHyV1M" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/S2oymHHyV1M</a>

Allyuh should really check this out... the stream is 59 minutes long, but very much worth the listen.  Essentially this Trini fella, Collin Warner is wrongly accused of murder in Brooklyn and convicted.  He gets sentenced to 15 years in jail, the judge seemed reluctant to sentence him but had no choice... 15 yrs was the minimum he could give him.  His best friend, Carl King, also a Trini, never gives up on him and teaches himself how to become a criminal investigator, and with the help of an unlikely crew, including the actual murderer and the victim's brother, they eventually get the conviction overturned nearly 20 years later.


Carl King, a self-taught investigator, talks about the murder case he's working on now—one the police think they've already solved. Carl got started in this business after freeing his close friend from prison. He now runs an organization, called Success to Freedom, devoted to helping wrongfully convicted inmates. (2 minutes)


Reporter Anya Bourg tells the story of Carl King's first case, where he's able to accomplish what experienced detectives and lawyers were not. He proves that his friend was innocent. In this first half of the show, we hear the story of the crime. In 1980, Mario Hamilton was gunned down in the street in Brooklyn. A teenager claimed to have seen it happen. With police prompting, he fingered a guy named Collin Warner as the shooter. No matter that everyone in the neighborhood said someone else murdered Hamilton and that Warner had nothing to do with it. And no matter that the teenager hadn't witnessed the murder at all. A jury convicted Warner, and he was sentenced to 15 years to life for killing a man he'd never even heard of. Carl, his childhood friend couldn't let it rest, and started to fight the conviction. He tells everyone he can about the case. He tracks down witnesses. He teaches himself to read court documents. Eventually, he gets a real estate lawyer hooked on the case. (29 minutes)


The story of Collin Warner continues. His friend Carl manages to convince the real shooter and the victim's brother (who watched him die on the sidewalk) to testify on Collin's behalf. After 21 years in prison, Collin goes free. (24 minutes)

Original music for the show by Single Minded Pros

General Discussion / A Revenge Plot So Intricate, the Prosecutors Were Pawns
« on: September 01, 2011, 11:19:48 PM »
July 25, 2011

A Revenge Plot So Intricate, the Prosecutors Were Pawns


Soon after Seemona Sumasar started dating Jerry Ramrattan, she had an inkling that something might be wrong.

He said he was a police detective, but never seemed to go to work. He seemed obsessed with “C.S.I.,” “Law & Order” and other television police dramas.

About a year after he moved into her house in Queens, their relationship soured. One day, he cornered her, taped her mouth and raped her, she said. Mr. Ramrattan was arrested.

But he soon took his revenge, the authorities said. Drawing on his knowledge of police procedure, gleaned from his time as an informer for law enforcement, he accomplished what prosecutors in New York called one of the most elaborate framing plots that they had ever seen.

One night, Ms. Sumasar was pulled over by the police. Before she could speak, detectives slapped handcuffs on her. “You know you did it,” she said one later shouted at her. “Just admit it.”

Ms. Sumasar, a former Morgan Stanley analyst who was running a restaurant, said she had no idea what that meant. Yet suddenly, she was being treated like a brazen criminal. She was charged with carrying out a series of armed robberies, based on what the police said was a wealth of evidence, including credible witness statements and proof that her car was the getaway vehicle.

In her first extensive interview about her ordeal, she recalled sitting in jail, consumed by one thought: “Jerry is behind this.”

But when she insisted to the authorities that he had set her up, they belittled her claims.

Now, though, they concede that Ms. Sumasar was right — an astonishing turn of events that has transformed her case into one of the most bizarre in the city’s recent history.

They released her from jail last December after seven months, acknowledging that the entire case against her had been concocted by Mr. Ramrattan, officials said.

“We prosecute tens of thousands of cases each year, but in the collective memory, no one has ever seen anything like this before,” said Richard A. Brown, the Queens district attorney.

“Few people have the capacity to pull off a master plot of this magnitude to exact revenge,” Mr. Brown said.

Mr. Ramrattan framed Ms. Sumasar because she would not drop the rape charge, prosecutors said.

And so even as Mr. Ramrattan remained free on bail in the rape case, Ms. Sumasar, who had no prior criminal record, was facing up to 25 years in prison.

Despondent, Ms. Sumasar passed her days behind bars scouring the indictments against her for clues that could help prove her innocence, even as news of lurid crimes that she had not committed were splashed in newspapers.

“From the beginning, I said he made it up,” Ms. Sumasar said. “I never thought my life would become a cop film.”

Ms. Sumasar, 36, is bubbly and petite. She never finished college but used her analytical skills to land six-figure jobs on Wall Street. Yet she acknowledged she can be too trusting.

After her arrest, she lost her restaurant franchise and her house in Far Rockaway went into foreclosure. She was separated from her daughter, Chiara, 12.

Ms. Sumasar is now planning lawsuits against the Police Departments in New York City and in Nassau County, the location of one of her purported robberies, over her arrest. Neither agency would comment.

Mr. Ramrattan never worked as a law enforcement officer, prosecutors say, but he often presented himself as a private investigator.

Mr. Ramrattan, who is being held at Rikers Island, appeared this month in a Queens court, where a judge refused a request for bail and set his trial date on the rape and conspiracy charges for Oct. 3. He has pleaded not guilty to both. He and his supporters are now voicing their own theory of the case: Ms. Sumasar framed him.

“My son is innocent, he was set up,” said Shirley Ramrattan, Mr. Ramrattan’s mother.

Mr. Ramrattan’s lawyer, Frank Kelly, said, “Everything about Ms. Sumasar and her associates will come out.”

Some legal experts say Ms. Sumasar’s story shows how the American justice system can be easily manipulated, with the principle of innocent until proven guilty turned on its head.

Prosecutors countered that the web of false evidence presented by Mr. Ramrattan was so detailed they had little reason to doubt it.

But Anthony Grandinette, Ms. Sumasar’s former lawyer, said law enforcement was negligent.

“Why would a tiny woman with no criminal record, who worked 10 years on Wall Street, randomly hold up people at gunpoint at night dressed as a policewoman?” Mr. Grandinette asked.

Ms. Sumasar, the daughter of an Indian taxi company owner from the South American nation of Guyana, was the embodiment of immigrant success.

When Mr. Ramrattan, dressed in a suit and tie, first entered her restaurant in 2006 and introduced himself as a police detective, Ms. Sumasar, a single mother, recalled being impressed.

The two began dating, and Mr. Ramrattan eventually moved into Ms. Sumasar’s house. At first, he seemed attentive, but she grew suspicious of him. He lied constantly, she said.

“I said to Jerry, ‘You tell so many lies, I think you actually believe what you are saying,’ ” Ms. Sumasar said.

Throughout 2008, she said she begged him to leave but he refused.

After Ms. Sumasar said she was attacked, on March 8, 2009, she pressed rape charges against Mr. Ramrattan, who was arrested and released on bail. Soon after, Mr. Ramrattan sent friends to intimidate her, prosecutors said.

They said that when she would not back down, he vowed to put her away.

The key to his scheme, prosecutors said, was to spread fake clues over time, fooling police into believing that all the evidence pointed to Ms. Sumasar.

They said he coached the supposed victims, driving them past Ms. Sumasar’s house so that they could describe her Jeep Grand Cherokee and showing them her photo so they could pick her out of a police lineup.

The setup began in September 2009, prosecutors said. An illegal immigrant from Trinidad told the police that he had been handcuffed and robbed of $700 by an Indian woman who was disguised as a police officer and had a gun, according to court documents.

Prosecutors said Mr. Ramrattan had persuaded the immigrant to lie, telling him that he could receive a special visa for victims of violent crimes.

Six months later, another man said he had been robbed in Nassau County by two police impersonators and described the main aggressor as an Indian woman about Ms. Sumasar’s height. The man said he had managed to take down the first three letters of the Jeep Grand Cherokee’s New York license plate — AJD.

All the while, Ms. Sumasar had a strong alibi, including cell phone records showing that calls were made from her phone at a casino in Connecticut on the day of the robbery.

But Sheryl Anania, executive assistant district attorney in Nassau County, said Ms. Sumasar’s business was foundering, so she appeared to have a motive.

The final fake crime was conjured in May 2010, officials said, when an acquaintance of Mr. Ramrattan said she had been held up by a couple posing as police officers. She said they were driving a Grand Cherokee, but she gave a full Florida license plate number.

She said she heard the pair call each other by name — “Seem” and “Elvis.” Elvis was the nickname of another former boyfriend of Ms. Sumasar, who owned the Jeep.

When the police looked into the Florida plate number, they found that the day after the purported March robbery, the title and the plate for the Cherokee had been transferred from Elvis to Ms. Sumasar’s sister in Florida.

Ms. Sumasar, who holds a Florida driver’s license, had driven the car to Florida to register it. To the police, she seemed to be covering her tracks.

With all the evidence pointing to Ms. Sumasar, the police arrested her. Bail was set at $1 million.

Prosecutors said the scheme unraveled in December 2010 — just weeks before Ms. Sumasar was to go on trial — when an informer told the police that Mr. Ramrattan had staged the plot. The informer gave detectives a number for a cellphone owned by Mr. Ramrattan.

When they checked phone records, they discovered multiple calls to the false witnesses, who confessed to the police. They were charged with perjury.

Today, Ms. Sumasar is trying to rebuild her life.

She checks the Rikers Web site frequently to make sure Mr. Ramrattan has not been released or escaped. She once paid for purchases with cash but now uses only credit cards, so there is a paper trail attesting to her whereabouts.

“From the beginning I was presumed guilty — not innocent,” she said. “I felt like I never had a chance.”

“I can never have faith in justice in this country again.”


General Discussion / 26 Charged in Child Porn Ring in NY
« on: June 17, 2011, 05:20:29 PM »

Cyrus R. Vance, Jr.
District Attorney, New York County

For Immediate ReleaseJune 14, 2011


Defendants Include a Substitute Teacher, an Attorney, and Employees of Child-Themed Businesses

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced criminal charges against 26 individuals for possession of videos and still images depicting child sexual assault. These defendants, all of whom are Manhattan residents, have been primarily charged with Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child and Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child.[1]The arrests follow a 5-month investigation by the Manhattan DA’s Office’s Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau, in conjunction with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations’ Child Exploitation Group.

“These defendants stockpiled images of the brutal rapes and sexual assaults of tens of thousands of real children,” said District Attorney Vance. “These victims were made to engage in physically and psychologically damaging sexual assaults that were recorded and disseminated online, feeding the appetites of pedophiles for more victims. Every time a new image is created, a child is victimized. And every time someone views these images, these children are re-victimized.

“The defendants in these cases traded images of child sexual assault the way that others trade baseball cards,” District Attorney Vance continued. “They were curators of their collections, who carefully labeled, sorted and shared their cache with others. At least one of these defendants showed these graphic images of violent sexual assaults to other children in order to desensitize them. In at least two cases, the defendants expressed a desire to begin sexually assaulting children. This Office’s investigation, led by the Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau and conducted in partnership with ICE, used specialized technology to locate and identify these predators to stop them in their tracks, before their criminal behavior escalated to physical sexual assault. Anyone concerned about criminal activity related to the possession or dissemination of images of child sexual assault in Manhattan is urged to call the District Attorney’s Office’s Child Abuse Hotline at 212-335-4308.”

James T. Hayes, Jr., special agent-in-charge, ICE Homeland Security Investigations in New York, said: “These predators rob children of their youth. One child victimized by a pedophile is one too many. This joint effort with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office is a clear indication of HSI's resolve to seek out those who sexually exploit innocent children.”

Michelle Collins, Vice President of the Exploited Children's Division and Assistant to the President, The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), said: “The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children applauds the Manhattan District Attorney's Office and the New York office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement for their outstanding collaboration during this investigation. The online circulation of these images re-victimizes the children in the photos. Investigations such as this one exemplify law enforcement's commitment to protecting children.”

Parry Aftab, Founder and Director of WiredSafety, said: “Behind every single picture of child pornography there is the pain of a child or infant being brutally raped, molested and tortured. As powerful a medium as the Internet has been for good, it is also a tool used by pedophiles and creeps who feed on the pain of our children. Any child, from any walk of life, can be victimized this way. And once the image is taken, their pain continues every time someone looks at it or watches their video. DA Cyrus Vance and his amazing team, along with the tireless investigators at ICE, have given some children the chance to sleep safely tonight. On behalf of all the children they have saved from torment and all my volunteers at WiredSafety, I would like to thank them from the bottom of my heart. Our New York laws need to be the toughest in the nation. We need to bring them up to date. I will, personally, support DA Vance in his fight to protect all our children in New York, and everywhere form child molester, online and off.”

What Constitutes an Image of Child Sexual Assault?

Under the New York State Penal Law, “sexual performance” refers to any “play, motion picture, photograph or dance … [or] any other visual representation” that includes sexual conduct by a child less than seventeen years of age. “Sexual conduct” refers to actual or simulated sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, sexual beastiality, masturbation, sado-masochistic abuse, or lewd exhibition of the genitals. “Promote” means to procure, manufacture, issue, sell, give, provide, lend, mail, deliver, transfer, transmute, publish, distribute, circulate, disseminate, present, exhibit or advertise, or to offer to agree to do the same.

The defendants in these cases used peer-to-peer technology, akin to that popularly used to swap online music and audio files, to download and share images of child sexual assault. The victims in the images charged in this case are both male and female, and range in age from infants to teenagers.

The District Attorney’s Office will be giving the images collected as part of this investigation to NCMEC, whose Child Victim Identification Program maintains a database of seized content of this kind. This helps prosecutors around the country prove that a real child is depicted in the images, as required by Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition, 535 U.S. 234 (2002), and helps assist law enforcement in locating unidentified child victims.

The Defendants

According to documents filed in court, the defendants reside across the borough of Manhattan and work in a range of professions, some of which placed them in frequent contact with children. JOSHUA RUIZ, 32, who has worked as a substitute teacher in New York City public schools, is charged with Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child and Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, according to documents filed in court. RUIZ downloaded images of child sexual assault and engaged in online discussions about luring children for the purpose of committing a sexual assault.

According to documents filed in court, GLEN BARFIELD, 39, an architect, is charged with Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child and Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child. BARFIELD shared images of child sexual assault with a 16-year-old boy who lived in Canada using an Internet video chat feature.

Several defendants are accused of possessing a vast collection of images of child sexual assault. On May 10, 2011, Manhattan District Attorney’s Office investigators and Homeland Security agents executed a search warrant on the home of MOSHE GERSTEIN, 35, a corporate attorney at a New York law firm. Three computers and an external hard drive containing a collection of approximately 5,000 images of child sexual assault were seized in GERSTEIN’s home. GERSTEIN is charged with Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child and Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, according to his indictment.

Additionally, MIGUEL CARABALLO, 29, a dishwasher at a restaurant that caters to children, was found in possession of hundreds of computer files containing images of child sexual assault following the execution of a search warrant on March 24, 2011. According to documents filed in court, the files in CARABALLO’s computer were sorted according to age, with some folders for children as young as one year old. CARABALLO is charged with Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child and Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child.

Other arrests included STEVEN ROMAN, 30, an employee at a children’s shoe store, SERGIO QUITO, 36, a deli worker, JUAN SANTIAGO, 55, a drug store employee, FERNANDO BLANCO, 36, a security guard, and SEFKET JADADIC, 47, an Upper East Side building superintendent.

The investigation into these cases is continuing.

Assistant District Attorneys Robert Shull, Jessica Troy, Jeffrey Levinson, Lauren Gretina, Heather Buchanan, Anne-Marie Whelan, Eun-Ha Kim, Rachel Ferrari, Jennifer Fromkin, Emily Logue, Jennifer Sculco, Chevon Walker, Malisa Chokshi, Rachana Pathak, Kevin Wilson, Emily Ching, and Child Abuse Unit Chief Robert Hettleman are prosecuting these cases, under the supervision of Cybercrime and Identity Theft Bureau Chief David Szuchman, Special Victims Bureau Chief Audrey Moore, and Executive Assistant District Attorney Karen Friedman-Agnifilo, Chief of the Trial Division. Chief Investigator John Bilich of the District Attorney’s Investigations Bureau and Deputy Chief Investigator for Cybercrime Richard Brittson also provided valuable assistance with the investigation, along with Supervising Investigator Elena Lui and Investigators Lauren Liebhauser, Jonathan Reid, Robert Muldoon. Members of the District Attorney’s Office’s High Technology Analysis Unit, including Director Steven Moran, Senior Analyst Selena Ley, Analysts David Chan, John Forames, Laurence Hayes and Jessica Ho, as well as Analysts Jasmine Mucha, Zach Greenwood, Erin Mulderig, and Abeer Alkhafajee, and Cybercrime & Identity Theft Bureau Administrator Paula Benigno, also assisted with the case.

District Attorney Vance also thanked Special Agent James T. Hayes, Jr. and ICE Homeland Security Investigations for their assistance in the investigation.


The following 17 defendants have been indicted in New York State Supreme Court:


GLEN BARFIELD, D.O.B. 1/19/1972

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, one count
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, 23 counts


New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, four counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, four counts


New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, four counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, four counts


New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, two counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, two counts

BRETT CHARLES, D.O.B. 4/17/1992

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, five counts
Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fourth Degree, a class C felony, one count

ROBERT DILONE, D.O.B. 8/11/1960

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, five counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, five counts


New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, two counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, five counts

BRET KERVEN, D.O.B. 6/7/1992

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

SEFKET JADADIC, D.O.B. 4/28/1964

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, five counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, five counts

ANTONIO METZ, D.O.B. 6/13/1982

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, five counts

SERGIO QUITO, D.O.B. 11/17/1974

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, one count
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

JOSHUA RUIZ, D.O.B. 6/6/1979

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, two counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, two counts

MATTHEW RUNION, D.O.B. 8/16/1976

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

JOHN RYAN, D.O.B. 9/19/1947

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

JUAN SANTIAGO, D.O.B. 8/19/1955

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, 10 counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, 10 counts


New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

RANDALL SMITH, D.O.B. 11/23/1983

New York, NY


Promoting a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class D felony, three counts
Possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child, a class E felony, three counts

The following 8 defendants have been arraigned in Criminal Court in Manhattan:


ERICK AQUINO, D.O.B. 5/2/1990

New York, NY


SHAWN COMIS, D.O.B. 6/09/1988

New York, NY


GERADO MADERA, D.O.B. 11/14/1990

New York, NY


RUDY MENA, D.O.B. 1/24/1993

New York, NY


EDWIN PADRON, D.O.B. 1/25/1966

New York, NY


RADAMES PEREZ, D.O.B. 12/3/1976

New York, NY


STEVEN ROMAN, D.O.B. 3/10/1981

New York, NY


GAVIN TROUCHET, D.O.B. 10/16/1957

New York, NY


This is why I does be frustrated with Trinidad... put all they shit out there for the public to see, instead ah hiding behind "a suspect known to police", or "a highly-regarded corporate lawyer".  Call dey name. Sick f**kers.   

What about Track & Field / Diamond League- New York (June 11th, 2011)
« on: June 07, 2011, 08:20:42 PM »
Ticket already in hand...

Men's 100 m Heat 1






EDWARDS Rae Monzavous- USA


GAY Tyson- USA






Men's 400m




BROWN Christopher- BAH


DESTA Bereket- ETH




PISTORIUS Oscar (aka "Blade Runner")- RSA 






Football / Madness in Mexico: Field intrusion sparks a brawl
« on: May 18, 2011, 09:19:55 AM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/AY5MRvEFUO8&amp;feature=player_embedded" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/AY5MRvEFUO8&amp;feature=player_embedded</a>

Clausura semi-final replay between Morelia and Cruz Azul... with Azul winning the first leg 2-0. Morelia scores three to take a 3-2 lead on aggregrate and mayhem ensues.  A fan runs onto the pitch to shake the Cruz Azul players hand but suffice to say they were not in a celebratory mood and he gets a beatdown.  Somehow one of the Morelia assistants gets in the middle, takes a swipe at a Cruz Azul player and is then attacked by a swarm of Cruz Azul players.

Take a close look at what happens at 1:52... missed it? Check again at 2:44.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/DSrQtDILuq8" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/DSrQtDILuq8</a>

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/gjXMTdTIreI" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/gjXMTdTIreI</a>

Trinbago, NBA & World Basketball / A Woman Among Boys
« on: March 14, 2011, 09:49:45 PM »
Congrats to Coach Ruth Lovelace and the Kangaroos of Boys & Girls HS, my old high school.  Back-to-back New York City Boys Basketball champions, 2010 and 2011.

The Pride and Joy of Bed Stuy!

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/lRaxO9EQbw8&amp;feature=relmfu" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/lRaxO9EQbw8&amp;feature=relmfu</a>

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/erYhfd9iwik" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/erYhfd9iwik</a>

Football / Player sent off for tackling pitch intruder
« on: March 08, 2011, 11:37:41 PM »
March 8, 2011

English Player Gets Red Card for Tackling Streaker


LONDON (AP) — The streaker wore green. The soccer player saw red.

A man wearing nothing but a bright green thong and a curly black wig dashed onto the field during a low-level game in England on Monday. Dorchester player-manager Ashley Vickers ended the intruder's 30-second jaunt with a thudding, neck-high tackle during the 70th minute of the game against Havant & Waterlooville.

Vickers was shown a red card for violent conduct with the score 1-1.

"I'm dumbfounded and speechless," Vickers told local newspaper The Dorset Echo. "My only thought was to get hold of him so we could get on with the game. I managed to grab him and bring him to the ground, and the funny thing was the stewards actually thanked me for it. But the ref decided to send me off and it beggars belief."

Dorchester lost 3-1, a blow to the team's hopes of making the playoffs in England's sixth tier of soccer.

The intruder, meanwhile, was marched out of Westleigh Park and banned from the stadium.

The streaker — whose outfit resembled the "mankini" worn by Sacha Baron Cohen's "Borat" movie character — caused a stir among the 458 spectators by running amok between stunned players. Two officials failed to stop the intruder before Vickers stepped in.

The ejection — automatic for a player who attacks anyone on the field — angered Dorchester's players, who complained in vain to the referee. Two more visiting players ended up being sent off in the final 10 minutes for unrelated incidents, leaving the club with only eight players at the final whistle.

Havant manager Shaun Gale sympathized with Vickers despite acknowledging the referee "stuck to the letter of the law."

"It may have been hijinks and given a few people a laugh but I feel sorry for Ashley Vickers, who thought he was doing the right thing," Gale said. "I spoke to him after the match and he was devastated.

"It is not a rule I knew. Next time a streaker comes onto the pitch, I have told my players to stand back and wait for the authorities to deal with it."

Vickers has three days to appeal the decision. The Football Association is likely to lend a sympathetic ear regarding any punishment.


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/XUtiCXQNJks&amp;feature=player_embedded" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/XUtiCXQNJks&amp;feature=player_embedded</a>

Like Shaggy say "soap opera cyah sweet so"   :D

February 15, 2011

Berlusconi to Face Trial in Under-Age Prostitution Case


ROME — A Milan judge on Tuesday ordered Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to stand trial in April on charges of paying an underage nightclub dancer for sex and of abusing his office to help release her from police custody when she was detained for theft.

The trial is expected to begin April 6, according to a statement released by the judge.

Mr. Berlusconi denies wrongdoing. After the ruling on Tuesday he did not appear at a scheduled news conference in Sicily, where Italy is seeking to stem a flow of more than 5,000 illegal immigrants from Tunisia.

Since prosecutors announced last week that they would call for an expedited trial, saying they had enough evidence to waive preliminary hearings, Mr. Berlusconi has fought back in the news media, accusing the judiciary of a “moral coup” against his leadership.

He said on Monday that he would not step down, and his center-right coalition, which governs with a narrow majority, has stood by him, even as a growing number of Italians are tiring of his leadership. As the crisis wears on no one has ruled out early elections before Mr. Berlusconi’s mandate ends in 2013.

The president of Italy, Giorgio Napolitano, who has the power to dissolve Parliament and call early elections, said on Tuesday that the growing showdown between the executive and the judiciary posed “reasons for anxiety,” Italian news media reported.

On Sunday thousands took to the streets in Italian cities and worldwide in coordinated demonstrations that organizers said were aimed at restoring the dignity of Italian women amid the latest sex scandal and after years in which Mr. Berlusconi has routinely appointed television showgirls to political office.

The judge’s ruling came weeks after prosecutors said they were investigating Mr. Berlusconi on charges that he paid Karima El Mahroug, a nightclub dancer nicknamed Ruby Heart-Stealer, for sex before she turned 18 and abused his office in calling the police to intervene when she was detained in May for theft.


Mr. Berlusconi has said he called the police to avoid “an international diplomatic incident” because he had been told that the Moroccan-born Ms. Mahroug was the niece of Hosni Mubarak, then the president of Egypt.

The age of consent is 14 in Italy and prostitution is legal, but not with someone under the age of 18.

Both Mr. Berlusconi and Ms. Mahroug say they did not have sex, although Ms. Mahroug said the prime minister gave her 7,000 euros the first time she came to his villa for a party last spring. In a television interview last month, she said she had made up “a parallel life,” telling people she was Egyptian, not Moroccan, although she did not reveal whether she had ever claimed to be Mr. Mubarak’s niece.

The trial would not be Mr. Berlusconi’s first. Over the years he has emerged largely unscathed from a dizzying list of legal troubles, including charges of corruption, tax evasion and bribing judges. In each case he was either acquitted on appeal or the statute of limitations ran out.

In the new trial Mr. Berlusconi would not have to appear in court but could do so if he chose.

Piero Longo, a lawyer for Mr. Berlusconi, said in a television interview on Tuesday that the judge’s decision was “exactly what we expected.” Noting that Mr. Berlusconi would be tried before a panel of three female judges, he said: “Great. Women are always appreciated, sometimes even agreeable,” the center-left daily La Repubblica reported.


February 9, 2011

New York Congressman Resigns Over E-Mails


WASHINGTON — Representative Christopher Lee of New York abruptly resigned on Wednesday night after a shirtless photo of himself, which he had e-mailed to a woman, was published on the Internet.

Mr. Lee, a two-term Republican from western New York, notified the House speaker, John A. Boehner, of his decision in a letter on Wednesday afternoon, after the scandal had erupted, according to senior Congressional officials.

Mr. Lee’s office released a statement in which he asked for forgiveness. “I regret the harm that my actions have caused my family, my staff and my constituents,” he wrote. “I deeply and sincerely apologize to them all. I have made profound mistakes and I promise to work as hard as I can to seek their forgiveness.”

The resignation came hours after Gawker, a gossip Web site, published an e-mail exchange that Mr. Lee, who is married and has a son, had with a 34-year-old Maryland woman he had met through Craigslist.

According to Gawker, Mr. Lee, who is 46, replied to a personal ad that the woman had placed in the “Women for Men” section of Craigslist, seeking a financially and emotionally secure man.

“Will someone prove to me not all CL men look like toads?” the woman asked in the ad, using the initials for Craigslist.

Mr. Lee responded to the ad using a Gmail account that Gawker said it had traced to Mr. Lee’s personal Facebook account.

“Hi,” Mr. Lee wrote in the first e-mail. “Hope I’m not a toad.”

“I’m a very fit fun classy guy,” he continued. “Live in Cap Hill area.” He described himself as a 39-year-old lobbyist. He said he was 6 feet tall, weighed 190 pounds, and had blond hair and blue eyes.

“I promise not to disappoint,” he wrote.

After the woman responded flirtatiously, Mr. Lee sent a shirtless photo of himself that he had taken using the camera on his cellphone.

When the woman asked him if he made it a habit to send shirtless photos of himself to women, Mr. Lee responded in another e-mail: “Sorry. Its all I had.”

Gawker said the woman, a government employee who asked not to be identified, eventually stopped contacting Mr. Lee after she searched for his name online and discovered that he was lying about his profession and his age. The woman then sent the e-mails to Gawker.

Mr. Lee’s office did not return telephone calls seeking comment. But before Mr. Lee resigned, Gawker reported that a spokesman for him had responded that the congressman believed his computer had been hacked into.

This is the second time in less than a year that a member of New York’s Congressional delegation has resigned amid personal scandal.

In March, Representative Eric J. Massa, a freshman Democrat from New York, stepped down after the House ethics committee began an investigation into accusations that he had harassed a male aide.

Initially, Mr. Massa, who represented the 29th Congressional District in upstate New York, cited a recurrence of cancer as the reason for his decision to step down. But he eventually acknowledged having an inappropriate exchange with the aide during another staff member’s wedding in January 2010 while the two were sitting at a table.

Mr. Lee won his district in 2008, when he ran for the seat being vacated by Thomas Reynolds, an influential Republican who had announced his retirement.

Mr. Lee ran a family manufacturing business, transforming it from a small machine shop in western New York to a global enterprise.

His resignation opens a seat representing New York’s sprawling 26th Congressional District, a heavily Republican stretch of the state that runs from the western suburbs of Rochester to the northeastern suburbs of Buffalo.

Under New York law, it falls to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to call a special election to find a successor for Mr. Lee.

In Congress, Mr. Lee had a reputation as a social conservative, opposing, for example, a recent measure signed into law that allowed gays to serve openly in the military.


e-disHarmony... or maybe mismatch.com

Cricket Anyone / Three Pakistanis receive 5-year Bans for Match-Fixing
« on: February 10, 2011, 07:39:42 PM »
February 9, 2011

Cricket Scandal Stirs Memories of Baseball's Dark Moments


LONDON — The bans for spot-fixing imposed last weekend on the Pakistan cricketers Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir are far from the end of the matter. It is much likelier that, as Winston Churchill said of the Battle of El Alamein in World War II, they are the end of the beginning.

There now is a judgment, beyond that of the newspaper investigation that first made the accusations, that the players are indeed guilty of modifying their play to guarantee spot bets during a tour of England last summer. Each player has received a ban of at least five years.

Amir, though, has already announced his intention of appealing to international sport’s de facto supreme court, the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland.

“I am innocent, and I was confident they would clear me,” Amir told Reuters upon returning home to Pakistan after receiving the verdict from the International Cricket Council tribunal. “The ban came as a total shock. We are waiting for the I.C.C. to release the detailed judgment of the tribunal, after which we will decide what to do, but we have made up our minds to appeal the ban in the first instance.”

The players and their lawyers have now received those detailed judgments. They have not, though, been generally released because the players are also facing criminal charges in the United Kingdom. The I.C.C. fears that releasing the judgments would prejudice those proceedings, due to begin March 17.

If found guilty, the players could go to prison. There are also, though, serious implications for the I.C.C. The law under which the players are being charged, the “conspiracy to cheat” provision of the 2005 Gaming Act, is untested. While Mervyn Westfield, an Englishman who played for the Essex county club, faces a court appearance after being charged with spot-fixing, he has not been charged with conspiracy. Guilty verdicts against the Pakistan players would reinforce the tribunal findings, but a failure to convict would inevitably undermine them.

And then there is the likelihood of Amir’s seeking to resume his career when his suspension ends. Even if his appeal fails and he serves the full five years of his suspension, he will be only 23 when he regains eligibility.

He is not the only player who would return to sports after being banned. The N.F.L. this season saw the triumphant resurrection of quarterback Michael Vick in his second year since returning to the league. But however ugly Vick’s dog-fighting activities were, they did not directly relate to his involvement in football. Spot-fixing strikes at the sport itself, undermining its integrity.

The closer parallel is with what happened in baseball in 1919. If Amir is able to return in 2015 — the ban is backdated to when he was suspended last September — it will be as if Shoeless Joe Jackson of the Chicago White Sox had been able to return to baseball in 1924, instead of being cast out for life, as he and seven others were for intentionally losing games in the 1919 World Series, known since as the “Black Sox” scandal.

There is little sympathy in cricket for Butt, who had the responsibilities of captaincy, or Asif, a player with a record of disciplinary infractions. But there is some sympathy, with echoes of Shoeless Joe, for Amir.

Like the Chicago fan who asked Jackson to “Say it ain’t so,” the former England captain Nasser Hussain’s response to the first reports of allegations against the Pakistan players was “Please, anybody but the kid.”

There is more than disappointment at a special talent found wanting.

Just as nobody cast Jackson as a ring-leader, there is a widespread feeling that some allowance should be made for Amir’s youth and the likelihood that he was led astray by his seniors. As the former England player Victor Marks wrote last weekend, “Most 18-year-olds, upon entering an international dressing room, simply do as they are told.”

Like Jackson, who batted .375 in the fixed 1919 World Series, Amir clearly was trying most of the time. The day of the fatal no-balls awarded for his overstepping the bowling crease also saw him demolish England’s top order batting by taking six wickets, one of the best-ever performances by a bowler of his age.

None of this means, and nobody is suggesting, that Amir should not have been punished. If five years seemed harsh to some, England captain Andrew Strauss pointed out, “The important thing with any punishment for those sorts of things is that it sends a very strong message to people that might be tempted to do it in the future.”

But what happens once that punishment has been served? Is the player convicted of fixing deemed eternally damned and shunned by the game, or is the possibility of redemption accepted and Amir allowed to return for what could still be a long and prosperous career? Only one thing, to echo yet another baseball saying, is certain: It isn’t over.


General Discussion / Sexual assault captured on film!
« on: January 29, 2011, 08:29:16 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/khwjD-KVQ_Q&amp;feature=player_embedded#" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/khwjD-KVQ_Q&amp;feature=player_embedded#</a>

General Discussion / Abortion Dr. Charged with Murdering Babies
« on: January 19, 2011, 09:47:13 PM »
This is like some Nazi horror clinical trials thing...

Doctor Is Charged in Killing of Newborns

An abortion doctor who served minority and immigrant women in his clinic in Philadelphia was charged with multiple counts of murder on Wednesday in the deaths of a woman and seven newborn babies whose spinal cords had been cut with scissors, the district attorney’s office said.

Prosecutors charged Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 69, with eight counts of murder in the deaths of Karnamaya Mongar, 41, a refugee from Nepal, who received high doses of anesthetic for an illegal late-term abortion performed in 2009 and of seven infants who were born, killed and then disposed of in Dr. Gosnell’s West Philadelphia clinic, the Women’s Medical Society.

Prosecutors laid out their case in a 281-page grand jury document that read like a grisly script. Plastic bags and mineral water bottles holding aborted fetuses were found stashed in Dr. Gosnell’s clinic. Jars containing the severed feet of babies lined a shelf, the Philadelphia district attorney, Seth Williams, said in a statement.

Dr. Gosnell, a family practitioner who was not certified in obstetrics, performed late-term abortions, after 24 weeks, which are illegal, and employed staff members who were not trained medical professionals, including a teenage girl, prosecutors said. Nine of his employees were also charged.

“It is very important to remember that Dr. Gosnell is presumed innocent,” a lawyer for Dr. Gosnell, William J. Brennan, said. “I would hope there is not a rush to judgment and that he has an opportunity to review this very lengthy charging document.”

In the grand jury document, prosecutors called Dr. Gosnell’s clinic “a baby charnel house,” riddled with fetal remains and reeking of cat urine, with furniture and blankets stained with blood. Medical equipment was broken and supplies were reused.

“The real business of the ‘Women’s Medical Society’ was not health, it was profit,” the document stated. It detailed a practice of selling prescription painkillers during the day, and at night, performing abortions for cash for women who could not get them elsewhere because they were too pregnant.

When labor was induced and a baby was born, Dr. Gosnell would kill it by cutting into its neck and severing its spinal cord in a process he referred to as “snipping.” In one case involving a 17-year-old who was 30 weeks pregnant, prosecutors said, Dr. Gosnell induced labor, severed the fetus’s spine and put the body in a shoe box. “The doctor joked that the baby was so big, ‘he could walk me to the bus stop,’ ” the document said.


... should be an interesting next couple months.

General Discussion / WTF Going on in Arizona???
« on: January 08, 2011, 02:18:04 PM »
Congresswoman Giffords Shot in Tucson


Gabrielle Giffords, a congresswoman from Arizona, was shot in the head on Saturday at a public event held at a grocery store in Tucson, her spokesman, C. J. Karamargin, said. Others at the event, including members of her staff, were among the injured.

Her condition was unknown. She was taken to University Medical Center in Tucson, the trauma center for the area, about 10 miles away. Even though NPR and CNN reported that she had been killed, Darci Slater, a hospital spokeswoman, said that Ms. Giffords was in surgery.

CNN quoted a public information officer for the sheriff’s office as saying that 12 people had been injured in all and that the shooting had occurred around 10 a.m. local time.

Dr. Steven Rayle, a former emergency room doctor who now works in a hospice, said that he had witnessed the shootings. He said the congresswoman was standing behind a table outside the Safeway greeting passersby when the gunman approached her from behind, held a gun about a foot from her head and began firing.

. “He must have got off 20 rounds,” he said. Ms. Giffords slumped to the ground and staff members immediately rushed to her aid, Dr. Rayle said.

Dr. Rayle said he performed CPR on some of the victims. He said one of the victims was a young child and appeared to be in critical condition with a gunshot wound.

He said that one of the staffers tackled the gunman and that he and others helped detain the suspect. The doctor described the gunman as a white male in his mid-20s with short hair and “dressed in a shabby manner.”

An employee at a nearby store told CNN that he heard a steady stream of gun fire that appeared sustained and “random.” Shortly after, emergency vehicles filled the parking lot around the grocery story and cordoned off the area.

The shooting occurred at a Safeway supermarket in northwest Tucson as Ms. Giffords hosted an event, called “Congress on Your Corner, to allow members of the 8th Congressional District to meet her individually. She has held several events since first taking office in January 2007. At one such event in 2009, a protester was removed by police when his pistol fell on the supermarket floor.

Last March, her Tucson office was vandalized a few hours after the House vote overhauling the nation’s health care system, the authorities said. Earlier events in Tucson, Oro Valley, Green Valley, Sierra Vista, and Douglas had attracted between 75 and 150 people, according to a statement announcing the event. This was her first event since her re-election to a third term in November.

Ms. Giffords, 40, was interviewed on Fox news on Friday to talk about a bill to cut to congressional salaries by 5 percent.

She married Cmdr. Mark E. Kelly, 46, a NASA astronaut and Navy pilot from New Jersey, in December 2007 at a wedding attended by Robert B. Reich, the former Labor secretary.

Marc Lacey contributed reporting from Tucson.

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Correction: January 8, 2011

An earlier version of this article misstated Gabrielle Giffords's condition. While several news reports had said she had died on the scene, a hospital spokeswoman said that the congresswoman was undergoing surgery.


General Discussion / Come and show off
« on: December 25, 2010, 07:54:31 PM »
Santa GPS musse break because ah still waiting tuh hear reindeer on mih roof.  Anybody get anything cool?

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