Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Sex rehab for sexual addiction: What is it, and how does it work?

With all the celebrities that have admitted themselves into ‘sex rehab’ centers recently, you might be curious about what goes on there. How does sex rehab work? Is it effective, or is this just an excuse to ask others for forgiveness? You might even scoff at the idea that someone needs to enter a sex rehab center. Perhaps you believe all they really need to do is come clean and stop cheating on their significant other, or choose to live a single life so as to not hurt others with lies and increased exposure to sexually transmitted diseases. This article serves to explain what sexual rehabilitation or ‘sex rehab’ is, and how a person with a sexual addiction might benefit from this form of treatment.

Treatment for sexual addiction tends to focus on two main areas:

1) Separating the addict from opportunities to continue harmful sexual patterns of behavior, much in the same way drug addicts need to be separated from their drug-filled lifestyle. This is why inpatient or residential treatment is often the suggested setting. An inpatient setting provides a controlled setting, which aims to eliminate opportunities for compulsive behavior.

2) Utilization of a safe, therapeutic setting with trained professionals to help individuals begin to face the guilt, shame and depression that is common amongst sexual addicts.

Sexual rehabilitation centers may vary in the variety of psychological treatment modalities they provide, but this list contains a broad overview of therapeutic strategies that have proven to be effective at helping people overcome sexual addiction.

12-Step Programs. Sexaholics Anonymous (SA) is a 12 step program which utilizes principles similar to those used in other addiction programs, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA.) However, unlike AA, where the goal is complete abstinence from all alcohol, SA pursues abstinence only from compulsive, destructive sexual behavior. By admitting powerlessness over their addiction, seeking the help of God or a higher power, working the 12 different steps, seeking a sponsor and attending meetings consistently, many addicts have been able to regain intimacy in their personal relationships.

Cognitive-Behavior Therapy (CBT).
This form of therapy helps people to examine the relationship between their thoughts, feelings and behaviors as they relate to their addictive patterns. By targeting the triggers and reinforcers that perpetuate the addictive pattern, people can begin to short-circuit the process and make healthy changes. Treatment can include teaching addicts therapeutic tools such as thought stopping, behavioral substitution, and thought record keeping, as a means to prevent the relapse of addictive patterns.

Interpersonal Therapy. Traditional "talk therapy" or counseling with an individual therapist can be helpful in providing a space for individuals to sort through past experiences that shaped addictive behavior, as well as manage mood symptoms, increase the ability to cope with stressors, and learn healthier lifestyle patterns and behaviors.

Group Therapy
Group therapy typically consists mental health professional(s) facilitating a group of people that engage in dialogue around addiction issues, and learn from related psychoeducational materials. A group environment is thought to enable people to learn from others’ experiences, strengths and relapses. It is also an ideal setting for people to learn through the confrontation of denial and rationalizations common among addicts in various stages of their rehabilitation.

Recent developments in the literature suggest that certain psychotropic medications (antidepressants) may prove to be useful for many people in managing sexual addiction. In addition to treating mood symptoms common among sex addicts, these medications may have some benefit in reducing sexual obsessions and ruminations.

This article was composed by Dr. Christina Villarreal, Clinical Psychologist in Oakland, CA


2 The National Council on Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity - and
3 Defense Security Services -
4 Patrick Carnes (1991). Don't call it love: Recovery from sexual addiction, (New York: Bantam, pp. 22-23, 30-34).
5 Michael Herkov, Ph.D., Mark S. Gold, M.D., and Drew W. Edwards, M.S., Feb 2001

YouTube is down again as of 5:01 PM PST

For some reason, and for the second time in less than a week, the top video sharing and distribution site is down again.

As of 5:01 PM PSY a "Http/1.1 Service Unavailable" note appeared when one tries to go to

YouTube went down last Thursday morning, but the matter was quickly resolved.

There's no word via email by YouTube on this. This also happens to be the day when YouTube was installing a major make-over to its video pages, including Zennie62.

Stay tuned.

Sandra Bullock news: Jesse James Nazi Picture is out

In the latest update in the Sandra Bullock and Jesse James cheating scandal, we can report this Sandra Bullock news: the Jesse James Nazi Picture is out.

The photo that was long rumored to exist – one of Bullock's husband Jesse James in Nazi gear and giving the salute – has surfaced at and US Weekly.

For those of you who need a backstory, the quick version is that Jesse James allegedly had affairs with as many as five women: Michelle "Bombshell" McGee, Melissa Smith, Brigitte Daguerre, and a fourth and fifth woman, both who declined to identify themselves at this time.

But the photo, which this blogger had hoped did not exist, does, even though it took a week for TMZ to produce it.

The guess is they didn't want to be caught in another hoax. But the photo, which is two years old according to TMZ, shows Jesse James wearing a Waffen SS visor and striking the "sieg heil" salute. There's also a german model airplane next to him. Where it was taken, TMZ does not know.

What the hell was Jesse James thinking?

Stay tuned.

French version:

Mindy Lawton and Jamie Jungers, Tiger Woods mistresses, in Vanity Fair

Related searches: loredana jolie ferriolo, vanity fair, vanity, vanity fair tiger woods, daily mail showbiz

Mindy Lawton 
Now that Tiger Woods, the World's Greatest Golfer, has made a public apology for his 12 or 14 mistresses and affairs, and gave a five-minute interview to ESPN and The Golf Channel, it seems Tiger Woods' mistresses are surfacing to fill-in the blanks created in Tiger's statements.

But statements by Mindy Lawton and Jamie Jungers, Tiger Woods Mistress Number 6 and Number 4 respectively, are a doozy.

In his Golf Channel interview, Tiger Woods claimed that...

"It was all me. I'm the one who did it. I'm the one who acted the way I acted. No one knew what was going on when it was going on. I'm sure if more people would have known in my inner circle, they would have stopped it or tried to put a stop to it. But I kept it all to myself."

But Mindy Lawton and Jamie Jungers are to be believed, and there's no reason to think not, Tiger Woods is not telling the truth. According to Vanity Fair, and a preview of an article by Mark Seal, Mindy Lawton says that when the National Enquirer approached her regarding her affair (an event mentioned last December in this space), Tiger Woods directed Lawton to call his agent IMG's Mark Steinberg who said "We'll take care of it."

Jamie Jungers told Vanity Fair that she would schedule meetup with Tiger Woods through Byron Bell, Woods, childhood friend and the President of Tiger Woods Design.

Beyond that, what Mark Seal writes is essentially a rehash of a lot of information about Tiger woods mistresses that appeared in blogs, like Zennie62. The info on Tiger Woods gambling habits has been mentioned before, but in a whisper.

What Vanity Fair's Seal does is take all of the history - well, most of it - and put it into one complete article. The revelation that Tiger Woods' agent and managers were essentially involved in the maintenance of his affairs is new and damaging.

Can't help but wonder what Tiger Woods Wife Elin Nordegren thinks of all of this.

Ricky Martin coming out as gay: 6 stages for understanding the emotional process

After years of fighting off rumors about his sexuality, Latin singer Ricky Martin has finally just posted the following message on his official Web site, coming out and telling the world he is gay.

"Today is my day, this is my time, and this is my moment. These years in silence and reflection made me stronger and reminded me that acceptance has to come from within and that this kind of truth gives me the power to conquer emotions I didn't even know existed ... I am proud to say that I am a fortunate homosexual man. I am very blessed to be who I am," he wrote.

Coming out as gay, lesbian bisexual or transgendered is a process that for many, is experienced in stages of change. While there are different models and theories about coming out, the six-step process (The Model of Homosexuality Identity Formation) was created by psychological theorist Vivienne Cass in 1979 and is still an accepted model for understanding the experience. While many will not experience these steps in a linear course, the following steps capture essential components of the coming out process. These steps are not necessarily mutually exclusive, and can be experienced simultaneously. For example other theorists have said that it is not uncommon for people go back and forth in their sexual identity development.

Step One: Identity Confusion
"Who am I?" is the major question in this step. People in this stage of the coming out process start to notice their attraction to same-sex people and really question what it means. Am I gay? Am I a lesbian? Am I transgendered? Am I bisexual? Within this stage there may be a denial of inner feelings as a person continues to see themselves as a member of the mainstream, heterosexual population. Some may consider their behaviors as ‘just experimenting’. Some people in this stage might keep emotional involvement separate from their sexual activity; others may choose to have deeply emotional relationships that are non-sexual.

Step Two: Identity Comparison
At this stage, a person may try to find an explanation for why they are having the feelings they are experiencing. "Maybe I am gay. Or maybe I'm bisexual." Feelings of isolation & alienation are common in this stage. A person might wonder "Is this a phase?" "Am I only attracted to this one same sex person, or is this going to be a permanent trend?"

Step Three: Identity Tolerance
In this stage, a person might begin to accept identifying as gay, lesbian or transgendered or bisexual. Some might come to terms with some parts of being gay, but not fully embrace it. For example, one might accept participating in sexual activity with a woman and consider it okay, but may not be ready to identity as lesbian or bisexual in public, leading a ‘double life.’ Or a man may come to accept that he has fallen in love with another man, but considers this an isolated situation. At this stage, it is common for people to seek out a gay/lesbian/bi-sexual community or social group as a way to explore or experience identifying with other people of the same sexual orientation as a means for support.

Step Four: Identity Acceptance
In this stage a person has begun to accept, rather than just tolerate their sexual identity. People often begin forming friendships with other gay, lesbian, transgendered or bisexual people. Many begin to realize that being lesbian or bisexual is acceptable, and that their life can and will be happy and fulfilling. At this stage, it is common to begin coming out to a few trusted individuals.

Step Five: Identity Pride
People who are in this stage feel a sense of pride of their sexual orientation, and feel comfortable interacting in gay communities. They start coming out to others in their lives, by making their sexual orientation publicly known. It’s also common for people to feel angry and resentful about the lack of legal and social rights that gay and lesbian people experience. Some people may get involved in gay and lesbian activism. Others may feel the need to isolate.

Step Six: Identity Synthesis
In this stage, a person’s sexual orientation is integrated into their whole identity. For many, this includes a holistic view of the self and people often feel equally comfortable in straight and gay, lesbian, transgendered or bi-sexual environments.

This article was composed by Dr. Christina Villarreal, Clinical Psychologist in Oakland, CA

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Sandra Bullock news: Jesse James in rehab at Arizona's Sierra Tucson

In this follow-up to the earlier blog post on Sandra Bullock's husband Jesse James, we learn the real reason Jesse James was driving to Arizona when a California Highway Patrol Officer stopped him for driving his tinted-window Mercedez Benz without a front license plate: it was to save his marriage by checking into a rehab clinic called Sierra Tuscon, according to

The trouble is, Sierra Tucson appears to have violated state and federal law in sharing information on Jesse James.

The Sierra Tuscon website reports that the organization provides...

..individualized treatment for the following addictions, mental health issues, and chronic pain: Coexisting Disorders, Trauma & Abuse, Depression, Sexual Addiction/Compulsivity Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, Eating Disorders, Drug Addiction, Alcohol Addiction, Anxiety/Panic Disorders, Bipolar Disorder, Pain Management..

Let's hope Jesse James is getting quality care. In October of 2009, Sierra Tuscon was fined $3,500 for discharging a patient with "a history of psychosis" and harboring "suicidal thoughts." In fairness, Sierra Tuscon said it responded "swiftly" to the matter last year.

TMZ reports that it called Sierra Tuscon and...

and spoke with a therapist, who told us Jesse was at the facility and in fact had a 6 PM treatment.

If this is the case, Sierra Tucson has violated its own privacy and confidentiality statements, which read as follows:

Sierra Tucson respects the privacy of its users. Sierra Tucson does not sell, rent, or loan any identifiable information regarding its customers or website visitors to any third party. Any information you give us is held with the utmost care and will not be used in ways for which you have not consented.


Sierra Tucson's commitment to each patient's confidentiality is ensured by our legal responsibility as mandated by state and federal law (including 42 CFR Part 2). Each staff member is dedicated to upholding these standards in all communications and records. Staff, patients, family members, and visitors all sign a confidentiality statement and agree to keep all knowledge or information of Sierra Tucson staff, patients, and family members confidential at all times. We go to great lengths to protect the anonymity of everyone who enters Sierra Tucson.

"We go to great lengths to protect the anonymity of everyone who enters Sierra Tucson."

Really? OK. Someone at Sierra Tucson just violated state and federal law in giving TMZ the information the news site reported.

Stay tuned.

Sandra Bullock news: Jesse James mistress number five?

The story of Oscar-winner Sandra Bullock and her husband Jesse James has taken a new twist. Unbelievably and sadly, has just issued a shocking blog post 20 minutes ago that it's on alert for an alleged fifth mistress of Jesse James to reveal herself.

A source told the online rival publication that the woman has been "consulting attorneys and PR the past few days", and may make a public appearance this week.

Looking to make money from her association with Jesse James, the woman has reportedly been turned down (yeah!) by several PR representatives. RadarOnline explains that the story's "White Power" element is just not for them.

But even with that, the question is, does this alleged fifth mistresses have some kind of white supremacist angle too? Hopefully, for Jesse James, who's reportedly trying to save his marriage, mistresses number four and five turn out to be nothing more than hot air, and that only Michelle "Bombshell" McGee has the Nazi-bikini photos.

Stay tuned.

Santonio Holmes criminal case closed; Mills called Holmes N-word?

The criminal case against Pittsburgh Steelers Wide Receiver Santonio Holmes is closed. Now, in what is just a completely whacked episode, there are reports that Holmes accuser of a March 7th assault, Anshoenoe Mills, called Holmes the N-word, then was later seen by a police officer "smiling and rubbing Holmes' face" after she talked to Orlando Police.

Mills claimed Holmes threw a bottle at her, but until today there were no reports why a bottle would have been thrown. The whole argument was reportedly started over a VIP seat in the establishment.

According to and, the police report has it that the off-duty officer on the scene at Club Rain in Orlando talked to both Holmes and Anshoenoe Mills outside the club and was told two completely opposing stories. What's weird is after the two stories were told and Mills declined to file charges, Orlando police filed charges against Holmes anyway.

Profootballtalk reports this part of the police report raises a lot of questions:

"This officer observed Mills smiling and rubbing Holmes face just moments after walking off together," the report continued. "Five minutes later the two returned and Mills advised this officer that they had resolved the matter and that she did not wish to press charges or get Holmes into any trouble. Mills had a small abrasion that was less than 1/4' [''] over her right eye. She refused medical attention. Mills wrote a sworn written statement in which she declined to prosecute."

Moreover Santonio Holmes has claimed that it was someone else who threw a bottle at Mills, not him. According to, which reports the N-word matter, Holmes says that Mills started the entire incident by grabbing his wrist and calling him the N-word.

It's a case of he said, she said, racism either real or imagined, perhaps cocktail consumption, and an Orlando police report that may not have been filed in a timely manner. Moreover, Anshoenoe Mills is black, but contrary to the view of some in American society, there are blacks like this blogger who will not stand for being called the N-word by anyone, regardless of color.

Mills does not help her case, criminal or civil, with this profile post on Black Planet:

Here's a little information about Anshonae Ashley. Im very optimistic and love to try new things. My favorite food is spaghetti. I love animals. I love to laugh...its good for the soul. I love to eat, but hate to gain weight. I am originally from Jacksonville, but I live in Orlando for school. I attend the University of Central Florida. Im majoring in Forensic Science with a minor in Chemistry. I have two beautiful poodles. I dont want to grow up. Im an adrenaline junky. My personality is contagious. I never stop smiling. I laugh when no one is laughing. I hate being called Ann or Shonae. Im not usually a b*tch, but i can be. Nothing annoys me more than lame people. So if you are lame...please..go to another page. I love money. I love to live. I love to love. I'd love being done with this sh*t! if you want to know more about me (bullsh*t aside) ask! Oh and one more thing...if you don't have anything to offer me the time and don't send me any messages. If you can't handle probably can't handle this!!!

Regardless of the outcome of the civil case, this is one area where Santonio Holmes could have avoided being The Angry Black Guy in arguing with Mills, found his inner Frank Sinatra (especially since it was Oscar Sunday), defended a woman who was the apparent target of a flying bottle, and just let the lady have the VIP seat.  One would think he's got enough money such that it wouldn't matter, but this proves money can't buy happiness.

Oakland A's Stadium News: Field of Schemes wrong, as usual

The news that Major League Baseball's "blue-ribbon" committee or "Gang of three" is set to recommend the Oakland Athletics Baseball Organization move to San Jose from Oakland apparently upset some unknown blogger at the website Field of Schemes, which wrongly assumes that every sports stadium deal is a bad one. This blogger figured why not have some fun and give Field of Schemes some Internet traffic light at the same time.

Field of Schemes writes:

That Selig's Gang of Three would recommend San Jose as an A's destination, if true, wouldn't be surprising, given its further-ahead stadium deal and relatively untapped market

Writing that the San Jose Market Area is "relatively untapped" proves Field of Schemes doesn't know the San Francisco Bay Area, the San Francisco Giants Market Area, or is just plain confused. I'd select the last one, because then the Field of Schemes blogger writes...

..the bigger question remains what price Selig will make A's owner Lew Wolff have to pay to the San Francisco Giants if he wants to get a deal done.

At least the blogger over there realized perhaps half way through his blog as he was writing it, it seems, that San Jose is part of the Giants fan base and an area where Giants season ticket holders live.

And that contradicts the assertion that the San Jose Market is "untapped." It's more complicated than that. According to one study written over 15 years ago and I read while I worked as Economic Advisor to the Mayor of Oakland in 1997, 47 percent of the San Francisco Giants' fan base comes from San Jose and Santa Clara county. Moving the Oakland Athletics closer to San Jose doesn't mean people will dump their Giants season tickets; it means Oakland season ticket holders would have a new place to go.

The change would be in discretionary spending for residents in the San Jose area, because now going to a baseball game would be a bit easier to do. But after what I calculated as a three-year novelty period as I was creating my Oakland Baseball Simworld (which is used in sports management school programs), spending would drop to normal levels and if the economic unemployment rate did not decrease to around 6 percent, the new stadium would be in big trouble.

Where the San Francisco Giants would be harmed by the Oakland A's is in sponsorship revenue it could capture from that region.

But the main issue is the San Francisco Bay Area is really one big metropolitan area. In the previous blog on this, I was explaining how baseball really is a World export industry, but in the case of the Oakland A's, their marketing effort does not reflect that. I'm not surprised the Field of Schemes blogger spent so much time being snarky that he forgot to think about what he was writing, let alone understand my point.

Stay tuned....This is fun.

Sandra Bullock update: Jesse James reportedly working to save marriage

From the "We hope this is true" file, comes news that Sandra Bullock's husband Jesse James is reportedly working to save their marriage, according to The report came as part of a larger blog post on James being involved in a CHP (California Highway Patrol) stop. "Law enforcement sources" told TMZ that James was pulled over last Friday, outside of Blythe, California on Highway 10, after James was driving a black Mercedes without a license plate and with tinted windows.

(Now, what's going on in Jesse James' head to do that? James, who makes motorcycles, should have some idea that he would be a target for the CHP driving like that.)

The source explained that Jesse James talked about his marital problems for about 15 minutes and said that he was "heading to Arizona to save his marriage". The CHP officer let Jesse James drive on with a warning.

Hopefully, James is successful in trying to work things out with Sandra Bullock. At least here's hoping so. I know the vast majority of people polled want to see her divorce Jesse James, but marriage is for better or worse, then you most on together.

This is "worse", let's hope they get over it.

Kiana Kim latest Howard Stern Playboy Bunny guest

Just in time for Baseball season, Kiana Kim is the latest Howard Stern Playboy Bunny guest. But who's Kiana Kim? She's MLB legend Pete Rose's girlfriend. Yep. Rose (the Major League Baseball all time leader with 4,256 hits, 3,562 games played, 14,053 at-bats, and 10,328 outs) personally escorted Kim to Howard Stern's show, presumably to protect her from whatever crass statement Stern might issue.

Pete Rose, 68, has dated Kim, 29, since 2009. Wow, that's a 49 year difference, or more years than this blogger's age.

Reportedly, Pete Rose talked about his banishment from Major League Baseball and being held out of the Baseball Hall of Fame because of his gambling issues. Two months ago, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig did not say if and when Pete Rose would be reinstated to baseball when Dan Patrick pressed him on the issue on Patrick's show.

As for Kiana Kim, she's one of Playboy's Sexy 100 of 2009, but the wish in this corner is that Howard Stern would have Gabourey Sidibe from Precious on his show and say nice things about her.

Stay tuned.

Oakland A's Stadium News: MLB to reject Oakland for San Jose

According to a source Monday evening, Major League Baseball (MLB) is set to report that their MLB Baseball Stadium Commission formed to evaluate the Oakland A's stadium situation is going to recommend to MLB Commissioner Bud Selig that the Oakland A's move to San Jose.

The news came too late in the night Monday to check with appropriate key players for their reaction, but it's far to say one person who will not be pleased is Oakland City Attorney John Russo, who has openly said he's considering a lawsuit against both the Athletics and the City of San Jose.

The reasons why MLB would pick San Jose over Oakland will be listed in the report set to be released within three days (unless MLB elects to delay the release of the report after this blog post). But the array of information required and the template that information fits in is not complex or vast. One can guess that San Jose has a more complete stadium development plan. But if Major League Baseball even uses the term "marketing" or "ticket sales" as a San Jose advantage in the report then the stadium committee itself doesn't know what it's talking about.

Let's be more clear. If the stadium committee mentions that San Jose, which is just 30 miles from Oakland and in a smaller population center of the Bay Area (Oakland's at the center of the 3 million population East Bay), but still in The San Francisco Bay Area, and competing with the SF Giants Fan base for ticket revenue, is better for selling tickets, then this blogger will assert that Major League Baseball itself does not understand marketing a stadium product in the 21st Century.

The Oakland A's fan base is really Worldwide. It just hasn't been tapped by the Oakland A's. The Athletics best marketing partnerships are with air travel agents, airlines, convention and visitors bureaus, and hotels. Getting tourists to make baseball-special trips and taking advantage of business travelers who will want to go to MLB rivalry games is the base for ticket sales. It's as important as local sales. Luxury boxes should be considered as right for a national market, where people in Boston can buy part of an Oakland luxury box for Red Sox games. Multiply that approach times the teams in Major League Baseball the A's will play and there's a submarket to go after.

The Oakland A's don't do this. I should be able to go online and find A's ticket sales in several different languages, but I can't. So the problem is 20th Century marketing in a 21st Century World. If the MLB Committee shows that in their evaluation report, they just weren't worth putting together in the first place. Or maybe they were just formed to rubber stamp the idea of moving to San Jose.

The Commissioner would say, as he did earlier this month, that the commission gathered a lot of information. But if their initial questions are wrongheaded, then it doesn't matter how much data they collect: the decision will be the wrong one.

Stay tuned.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Sandra Bullock and The Academy Awards: preparing for the 2011 Oscars

Related searches: 2011 Oscars, AMPAS, Academy Awards, Bullock Oscar, The Blind Side, Michael Oher, Ravens NFL, Brigitte Daguerre, Melissa Smith, Michelle McGee, Bombshell McGee, Jesse James mistresses, Jesse James affairs, Sandra Bullock news and updates

So much has been written about Sandra Bullock and Jesse James, that the glow of Sandra Bullock's 2010 Oscar win has been diminished.

It's time to end that state of affairs.

Sandra Bullock achieved mega-stardom with her win for Best Actress in a Leading Role in the 82nd Academy Awards. At this point, it's appropriate to look back at that event, and also forward to the 2011 Oscars.

Sandra Bullock's path to the 2010 Oscars was set first, by an ever improving body of work that saw Bullock receive first major critical acclaim for her role as "Lucy" in While You Were Slepping, and then in Miss Congeniality, Crash, and The Proposal. By 2009 Sandra Bullock was an established star, and finally had a film vehicle that would give her the Oscar she deserved.

It was an outstanding performance as Leigh Anne Tuohy, the tough-minded, determined guardian of (Baltimore Ravens Offensive Tackle) Michael Oher in the movie The Blind Side, based on the book of the same name by Michael Lewis that was that vehicle. In all Sandra Bullock was nominated eight times and won awards four time, including the Academy Award for Best Actress. While the early favorite was Bullock's friend and rival Meryl Streep for Julia & Julia, Bullock's Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe wins made winning The Oscar a forgone conclusion.

On March 7th, 2010, it happened. Sandra Bullock received a standing ovation as she rose to accept the award after hearing her name called by Sean Penn. In her speech Bullock was modest and took time to thank the actresses competing against her....

Did I really earn this or did I just wear you all down? I would like to thank the Academy for allowing me in the last month to have the most incredible ride with rooms full of artists that I see tonight and that I've worked with before and I hope to work with in the future, who inspire me and blaze trails for us. Four of them that I've fallen deeply in love with I share this night with and I share this award with.

Gabby, I love you so much. You are exquisite. You are beyond words to me. Carey, your grace and your elegance and your beauty and your talent makes me sick. Helen, I feel like we are family through family and I don't have the words to express just what I think of you. And Meryl, you know what I think of you and you are such a good kisser.

Here's the video of Sandra Bullock's acceptance speech:

After her win at The Oscars, Bullock talked about getting back to normal:

All of this sets the stage for the 2011 Oscars, where Sandra Bullock will almost certainly be asked to preset.

As for the 2011 Oscars, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has announced these key dates for the 83rd Annual Academy Awards:

Saturday, November 13, 2010: Governors Awards presentation
Wednesday, December 1, 2010: Official Screen Credits forms due
Monday, December 27, 2010: Nominations ballots mailed
Friday, January 14, 2011: Nominations polls close 5 p.m. PT
Tuesday, January 25, 2011: Nominations announced 5:30 a.m. PT, Samuel Goldwyn Theater
Wednesday, February 2, 2011: Final ballots mailed
Monday, February 7, 2011: Nominees Luncheon
Saturday, February 12, 2011: Scientific and Technical Awards presentation
Tuesday, February 22, 2011: Final polls close 5 p.m. PT
Sunday, February 27, 2011: 83rd Annual Academy Awards presentation

As the AMPAS list reports, The 2011 Oscars will be held Sunday, February 27, 2011. I look forward to seeing Sandra Bullock there, and here's toward a new effort to restore her well-deserved luster in the face of a personal tragedy played before the World.

Erykah Badu window seat video uncut: Badu naked, gets shot; why?

There's no question but that Erykah Badu's managed to capture the Zeitgeist with Erykah Badu Window Seat Video Uncut if only for one day, but the thinking here is it's going to be for another three, especially since Badu's managed to piss off the City of Dallas for making it there without a permit.

Erykah Badu Window Seat Video Uncut has started talk because it channels the JFK Assassination in Dallas. But what was left out of the discussion was that Erykah Badu herself strips naked and is shot in the video, which is below:

While there may have been a deliberate attempt to upset people by generating the question "Why focus on a presidential assassination?", it's not clear that was the actual intent of the video. Apparently what Erykah Badu is trying to say is she's shedding her skin to be who she is, but society has a way of trying to destroy anyone who would seek to be who they are outside the cultural bounds assembled for them.

The end result is assassination.

What's interesting about her take, which I don't agree with, is that it comes at a time when self-expression has found its outlet in New Media. Anyone can quickly express who they are via video, blogs, websites, and podcasts. Moreover, they can do it safely. Just look at what Erykah Badu herself has done with Erykah Badu Window Seat Video Uncut.

But the real story is how Erykah Badu cracked the Internet marketing code by producing a video that in some way touches the sensibilities of American culture and makes us think.

The question is will the City of Dallas attempt to press charges, or just leave Erykah Badu alone.

I hope Dallas has better things to do.

Ricky Martin dice que es gay, pero su no es gran cosa para nadie

For the English version, click here.

Ricky Martin dijo al mundo que oye es gay y si bien no es gran cosa en este rincón, de Ricky Martin salen causó revuelo, y consiguió algo tan excitado que dejó el enlace al sitio web incorrecto de su cuenta de Twitter!

El cantante latino Ricky Martin, quien ganó fama mundial por su canción Livin 'La Vida Loca utilizado su cuenta de Twitter para arruinar la noticia de que que contiene un enlace a una página de su sitio web Bueno, el sitio que dirigió a los seguidores no está funcionando a partir de 4:17 PM PST. Lo que surge es "Bad Request (Invalid Hostname)".

Después de curiosear, era evidente que el enlace al sitio web de Ricky Martin tiene en su cuenta de Twitter no es la correcta. Ahora, es

Según la agencia Associated Press, Ricky Martin, que es de 38 años, decidió que no quería guardar secretos en el armario. Pero, ¿qué armario? Francamente, este blogger se sorprendió al saber de Ricky Martin era recta. Sí, Ricky Martin, tiene dos hijos y las mujeres les gusta ver que se mueva, pero Martin activado en mi "tiempo cada Gaydar 'Yo lo vi. Así que no sorprende aquí.

¿Qué aficionados Ricky Martin parece? Había 303 comentarios en su página web, aquí una muestra:

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:53 — libracolo
Ricky - Your friends will always be your friends, your family will always be your family, the people who genuinely respect you as a father and an artist could care less who you are sleeping with. Continue to live your life with the same amount of dignity and pride you have done so far and let the naysayers and the haters burn in hell. It's not my place to judge your lifestyle, I love your music, and your humanitarian service, and the rest is your personal business. You have just as much right to love anyone you please (man or woman) as the next person. Never feel ashamed!

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:55 — gloriaelizabeth
Ricky no importa tu sexualidad, te seguiré amando toda mi vida como le he hecho desde que era una niña, y lo haré toda mi vida, estás siempre en mi corazón y seguirás en el, no importa lo que pase, es un amor verdadero que nada lo puede apagar, eres un hombre incleíble, hermoso, bondadoso, exitoso, lo demas no importa, siempre te amaré, y contarás con mi apoyo. que dios te bendiga.besos y abrazos con todo mi amor.

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:52 — aleennyc
Hi. Congratulations on finally freeing yourself from the ball and chain that living a closeted life is. The load off your shoulders must be monumental. you are now free to pursue hapiness in the fullest of ways. i hope you will continue to give us more of the wonderful music you have given us over the years. Best to you and yours.

Algunos comentaristas piensan Ricky Martin será salpicado con "los fallos y las críticas", como escribió una persona, pero en este día y en este momento realmente no creo que la decisión de Martin de salir tiene tanto impacto como lo hubiera lo había hecho en la década de 1990. Mientras que Ricky Martin no va más "de Adam Lambert" y actuar como el chico gay enojado, está bien.

Francamente, me siento aliviada. Yo no tengo a ponerme celosa cuando las mujeres hablan de Ricky Martin se mueve más! Ricky Martin hará bien, la conclusión es que él es feliz.

Ricky Martin says he's gay, but its no big deal to anyone

Ricky Martin told the World that hey's gay and while it's no big deal in this corner, Ricky Martin's coming out caused a stir, and got him so excited he put down the wrong website link from his Twitter account!

Latin singer Ricky Martin who gained Worldwide fame for his song Livin' La Vida Loca used his Twitter account to blast the news that which contained a link to a page on his website Well, the site he directed followers to is not working as of 4:17 PM PST. What comes up is "Bad Request (Invalid Hostname)."

After poking around , it was apparent that the website link Ricky Martin has on his twitter account is the wrong one. Now, it's

According to the Associated Press, Ricky Martin, who's 38, decided he didn't want to keep any secrets in the closet. But what closet? Frankly this blogger was surprised to learn Ricky Martin was straight. Yeah, Ricky Martin has two kids and women love to see him move, but Martin activated on my "Gaydar' every time I saw him. So no surprises here.

What do Ricky Martin fans think? There were 303 comments on his website; here's a sample:

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:53 — libracolo
Ricky - Your friends will always be your friends, your family will always be your family, the people who genuinely respect you as a father and an artist could care less who you are sleeping with. Continue to live your life with the same amount of dignity and pride you have done so far and let the naysayers and the haters burn in hell. It's not my place to judge your lifestyle, I love your music, and your humanitarian service, and the rest is your personal business. You have just as much right to love anyone you please (man or woman) as the next person. Never feel ashamed!

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:55 — gloriaelizabeth
Ricky no importa tu sexualidad, te seguiré amando toda mi vida como le he hecho desde que era una niña, y lo haré toda mi vida, estás siempre en mi corazón y seguirás en el, no importa lo que pase, es un amor verdadero que nada lo puede apagar, eres un hombre incleíble, hermoso, bondadoso, exitoso, lo demas no importa, siempre te amaré, y contarás con mi apoyo. que dios te bendiga.besos y abrazos con todo mi amor.

Mon, 03/29/2010 - 18:52 — aleennyc
Hi. Congratulations on finally freeing yourself from the ball and chain that living a closeted life is. The load off your shoulders must be monumental. you are now free to pursue hapiness in the fullest of ways. i hope you will continue to give us more of the wonderful music you have given us over the years. Best to you and yours.

Some commenters think Ricky Martin will be peppered with "judgements and criticism" as one person wrote, but in this day and at this time I really don't think Martin's decision to come out has as much impact as it would have had he done it in the 1990s. As long as Ricky Martin doesn't go "Adam Lambert" and act like the Angry Gay Guy he's OK.

Frankly, I'm relieved. I don't have to get jealous when women talk about Ricky Martin's moves any more! Ricky Martin will do alright; the bottom line is that he's happy.

Sandra Bullock seeks divorce from Jesse James - again

Related searches: Brigitte Daguerre, Melissa Smith, Michelle McGee, Bombshell McGee, Jesse James mistresses, Jesse James affairs, Sandra Bullock news and updates

Pop Eater and The Vancouver Sun, and are reporting that Sandra Bullock is headed home to California and to seek a divorce from her husband Jesse James.

This Sandra Bullock rumor has been active for about 10 days now, and the first wave of Internet chatter withstood Bullock's publicist's attempt to drive it down. Sandra Bullock's publicist was not available to confirm or deny the fresh rumor as of 12:17 PM PST Monday.

Pop Eater's Rob Shuter reports that Sandra Bullock is returning to LA "to confront Jesse," setting up expectations of a heavyweight championship fight. Shuter blogs that a friend of Bullock's told him that her marriage is over and it's "impossible" for them to get back together.

What's confusing is Pop Eater reports that Bullock is flying back to California from Texas, whereas RadarOnline has it that Bullock's "camping out" at her Hollywood Hills home, which is not far from Cameron Diaz.

Putting it all together, Bullock reportedly moved out of the home she shared with Jesse James, is staying in the other home she bought for $1.485 million in 2001 (So it's worth a lot more now), but has been in Austin, Texas where RadarOnline claims she "owns a slew of businesses" in Austin, Texas, and has returned to Los Angeles to, as Pop Eater puts it, seek a divorce and confront Jesse James.

The last part is doubtful. But the fact is Jesse James has been linked to four alleged mistresses: Melissa Smith, Brigitte Daguerre, an alleged Mistress 4 who's represented by Gloria Allred, and the Nazi-bikini-wearing Michelle "Bombshell" McGee.

Stay tuned. There's more...

Miley Cyrus getting out of music and Twitter a big mistake

Related searches: Miley Cyrus, Twitter, The Last Song, Hanna Montana, Party in The USA, Teen Choice Awards

Teen pop mega-star Miley Cyrus announced she was getting out of music and before that she cut her Twitter account. Miley Crus has said she only wants to do movies, but someone needs to tell her she's not yet big enough or good enough as an actress to command the kind of per-fllm dollars on the level of a Julia Roberts or Anne Hathaway.

Music and Twitter have been Miley Cyrus' one-two punch to stardom. Everything Miley's enjoyed has come more from her music and her frankly sexually-charged marketing of it than even Hanna Montana. Giving that up, while may be a joyous idea to some, is a bad business move.

Miley Cyrus needs two or three more really blockbuster albums before she should call it a day for music. From that Cyrus had one incredible breakout marketing period that ended last fall. When Miley was "cooking" the media was eating up her tweets for breakfast and it seemed almost anything with her name on it moved off the shelves. And her controversial stripper pole dance at the Teen Choice Awards was edgy, daring, and something too much beyond her years, but it really got her into the mainstream spotlight.

All of Miley Cyrus success was caused by music and Twitter and far more than Hanna Montana. The process of people being able to buy and replay sounds and retweet tweets every day serves as instant marketing for Miley. When people get tired of the music inventory that's out there, that's it, because Cyrus' song inventory's not a large one. She has Party in The USA and that's about it for hits.

The only way Miley Cyrus is going to even maintain the massive PR buzz that helped her get to where she is today is by following the Paris Hilton strategy: being at every party, dating a bunch of guys, and having a sex tape. Baser? Yes. Simple? Of course. Effective? Yep.

But Miley Cyrus talent is in music. She should stick to it and work on getting better at it.

Moscow Russia subway bombing causes BART and DC Metro alerts

The suicide bombing in Moscow that killed 38 people during the morning rush hour and was allegedly done by female suicide bombers representing "a terrorist group from the North Caucasus region" according to Alexander Bortnikov of the russian Federal Security Service as reported by CNN.

The suicide bombing in Moscow has put the industrialized World on high alert; in America, BART, the Bay Area Rapid Transit System that serves The San Francisco Bay Area, and the DC Metro subway system that serves the Washington DC region are the focus of heightened security efforts.

Washington DC Metro police are conducting random inspections of stations and rail yards and BART Spokesperson Linton Johnson explained that BART police have taken similar alert actions. "BART has long been a part of Bay Area Counter-terrorism efforts", Johnson said this morning. Johnson says that BART riders don't have to worry about their safety. Indeed, BART has maintained a campaign of making sure riders also served as the "eyes and ears" of the system. "We have 3,000 employees and 300,000 riders, so the extra eyes and ears help us," Johnson said.

If you see any strange and potentially dangerous activity on BART, call (877) 679-7000, extension 7040. On DC Metro the number is 1-888-919-CRIME.

City of Oakland should make statement against racism

The City of Oakland, California's post-World War II history has been one of deep racial diversity and integration. Racist actions were few and far between but that's changing and it's happened in fits and starts over the last six years. This blogger has been in Oakland since 1974.

Never in less than a year (pay attention to that) have there been incidents like racist statements against Martin Luther King Day written on the bathroom walls of an establishment like Cafe Van Kleef in downtown Oakland, or even worse, a Swastika painted on the same Greek Orthodox Cathedral that serves as the home of the annual Greek Festival, an event I love to attend, or Yoshi's in Oakland making a jazz compilation of performers at the club without a single black jazz performer in it.

Something's going on. I personally think Oakland has been invaded by the "New Oaklander": the person who's only lived in Oakland as much as 10 years, from 2000 to 2010 at best, and does not know or really care about Oakland's proud racial history. This has produced an ugly pattern I was actually talking with a friend about who's very involved in local politics and is a business owner.

He observed that blacks and whites in North Oakland don't seem to mix. When he goes to a meeting on crime it's almost all white; when he' in the community he will see someone black. People who are active in North Oakland don't seem to have friends who are of color and by that he means black (and he's white). This is his observation. It's a view he shared as we were sitting down at Merritt Station Cafe next to Lake Merritt, and we both noticed the pattern and shared our views.

What covers this problem is the flip side and that's Oakland's open diversity. It's here and wonderfully out in the open, but so much so it masks a reality that blacks, whites, Asians, and Latinos don't mix as well as they did when the late Lionel Wilson was Mayor of Oakland.

Mayor Wilson set the tone: his was an interracial marriage. Mayor Wilson's wife Dorothy was white and had a wonderful zest for life such that she would dance in the Safeway Grocery Store on College Avenue at night. I know because I saw her do it. It was hilarious.

That Oakland was such that the Black Film Makers Hall of Fame was not just an African American event, it was for everyone. Todays Oakland is racially divided such that there are events like The Crucible which seems to be all white or events in The Fruitvale that are all Latino or restaurants like Flora that are mostly white where Pican on Broadway is mostly black.

(And one wonders why I'm such a fan of The Lake Chalet Restaurant. The owners are new to Oakland, but they do "get" Oakland.)

The point is that Oakland's quietly become racially divided. It didn't just happen. It started just over six years ago. And I wrote about the way patrons of color were treated at certain new bars that opened up. Bars that catered to a young white kind of punk and grunge crowd. But fortunately, the bar owners listened and the climate has improved greatly.

And that's the point. We're at the stage in our society where statements and policies against racism must be made. We can't go on with the idea that diversity and racial integration "just happen"; we have to make them happen.

Oakland's not for burning, but in the 21st Century Oaklanders must keep racial and ethnic intolerance from doing so. The City of Oakland should not just pass a resolution against racism but have a campaign to inform the world in an inexpensive way that racism is not tolerated.


City emails signatures and literature should have a simple statement that Oakland's a hate-free city. The City of Oakland's website should have a section page that lists fines and jail punishment for hate crimes. Finally, a video statement by not just the Mayor, but each Oakland councilmember and anyone else who wants to make one should be up at YouTube channel devoted just to this issue in Oakland. And Oakland should have a week that is devoted to "mixing" - people deliberately going to places and events produced by folks who don't look like them. Oakland bloggers should point to racist actions as a matter of course, to expose and report them.

Perhaps you have other ideas, but thinking of what can be done without spending money. We need to do something to stop racist acts like that done to the Greek Orthodox Cathedral.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Nada Prouty should be pardoned by President Obama

Related searches: Nada Prouty, CBS News, 60 minutes, Bush Administration arab, Hezbollah, terrorist group, American Patriot, Captain America

Nada Prouty, ex-FBI agent and CIA covert terrorism officer, was featured on CBS News 60 minutes, Sunday. Nada Prouty is no one to mess with. Prouty can effectively operate an assault rifle, had one of the nations highest security clearances, worked while pregnant, speak several languages including Arabic, saved American lives, and by all appearances is an American Patriot, and the real-life Captain America.

In this CBS video, Nada Prouty explains her case, and how she helped apprehend the mastermind of the hijacking of Pan Am flight 73. Proty got his confession and now he's spending 160 years in jail.

Watch CBS News Videos Online

But a 2007 Bush Administration effort to stop terrorist financing led investigators to Michigan, and a Lebanese-American restaurant owner named Talal Chahine, who happened to be Nada Prouty's brother in law. Then, prosecutors found a photo of Chahine with a spritual leader connected to Hezbollah, so the charge from Detroit prosecutors was that Nada Prouty saw classified documents about the terrorist group Hezbollah.

Prouty said she had little to do with Talal Chahine, and considered him "a womanizer who was cheating on her sister." But even with that, prosecutors stuck with a weak case based on classified documents that according to CBS News, were never produced. In other words, because the prosecutors said the documents were classified, they claimed they could not show them. Which is a weird trick to get around the appearance that they actually had no evidence to back their claim.

But determined to "get something" they kept digging, and what the "Detroit prosecutors" then found was that 18 years earlier, Nada Prouty was party in what's commonly called a "green card" marriage.

But somehow - for some reason - what's all too common was used to paint Nada Prouty as a person plotting to enter America as an illegal alien and pass secrets to terrorist groups; the same groups that have people Nady Prouty has apprehended or in some cases killed in defense of her country.

It's an obvious case of over-zealous prosecutors trying to connect un-connectable dots in Nada Prouty's past. If the U.S. Government went around looking at the marriages of every foreign born American citizen, and then finding those marriages to be "green card" associated and looking the current occupations of those persons, they could make a case, albeit a spurious one, for filing thousands of charges.

In Nada Prouty's case the CIA cleared her of any wrongdoing. Still Prouty pled guilty because, as she told 60 minutes, she was literally spent into a corner. The legal fees were too much for her to bear. CBS News reports that under pressure, Prouty:

...agreed to waive the 10-year statute of limitations on immigration fraud and plead guilty to two felonies related to the sham marriage. She also pled guilty to one misdemeanor count of unauthorized use of an FBI computer, a charge she now denies.

With all of this, where are American Conservatives to defend Nada Prodty? Well, being alarmist, idiotic, and ill-informed, that's where. By now it's logical to suspect the involvement of Michelle Malkin, who would be defending Nada Prouty if her name were Nathan Pride. But no.

Instead we get what in 2007 was Malkin's ill-informed blog rant, which fails to report any of the made-for-movie efforts this American Patriot has done in defense of America. Nada Prouty's Syrian-Lebanese background are the perfect target for Malkin's anglophilic blogging tendencies. But interestingly, Malkin backed off any further attacks on Nada Prody after 2007.

Well, the week is young.

And then we have Debbie Schlussel, who makes brazen accusations without looking at the case and brags about making up the name Jihad Jane for Nada Prouty in 2007 and in what has to be one of the most intellectually sloppy columns ever written in the New York Post.

Debbie Schlussel continues her baseless attacks in a new blog post not in the New York Post. Debbie Schlussel writes:

This woman is anything but an American patriot. She’s part of an Islamic terrorist gang who infiltrated this country at the highest levels and financed our enemies to the tune of tens of millions of dollars. It’s beyond nauseating that “60 Minutes” would take her side, fall for her BS.

("This woman?" Interesting.)

Since Nady Prouty is not part of "an Islamic terrorist gang" we can't take Debbie Schlussel's blog entry as anything more than mindless ranting by someone who, as an attorney, should know better.

Conservative Couch Potato blogging aside, President Obama should order Nada Prouty's case to be reopened at the very least, and should the investigation confirm what the CIA has already stated, that Nada's innocent, all charged dropped.

Then President Obama should pardon Nada Prouty. It would be a fitting apology for how she has been treated as well as all of the efforts she has taken to defend America.

Defintely, stay tuned.

President Obama surprise visit to Afghanistan shows resolve

Fresh from his Health Care Reform victory, President Barack Obama has found his sea legs and is apparently intent on keeping his promise of getting the U.S. out of Afghanistan by July 2011. Obama's surprise visit to Afghanistan took everyone aback, but it was necessary. All along Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai was identified as the one obstacle to successfully meeting this deadline.

The ability to trust Hamid Karzai has long been an issue in the Afghanistan war political theater. Karsai. Allegations of corruption and narco-terrorism have plagued Karsai's regime, and very nearly cost him the presidency in January of this year.

Still Obama elected to back Karsai and essentially give him another chance. While from all accounts the process of curbing the Taliban has gone well, it was Kasai's recent meeting with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and the insults to U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates over U.S. war occupation that followed, that raised eyebrows in America.

The Iranian leader Ahmadinejad said "We do not see the presence of foreign military forces in Afghanistan as a solution for peace in Afghanistan." It was unwise for Karzai to so openly meet with Ahmadinejad and not quickly denounce his Anti-Western statements, but Karzai plays fire with American allies. Obama's mission was the right call.

Oakland Marathon success means Oakland needs sports commission

Just a brief take on the Oakland Marathon and Oakland Running Festival held on this lovely weekend in Oakland and before the video's up in this space. First, congratulations to Race Director Gene Brtalik, who was a one-man band, meeting with officials, politicians, the media and people, even making sure that cups of water were filled for runners.

Regardless of who is named, Gene Brtalik of Corrigan Sports, and newly-minted Oaklander, made the Oakland Running Festival not just a reality, but a smoothly-running event.

What's annoying was the TV coverage by ABC Channel 7, who on Sunday afternoon ran a brief but oh-so-insulting clip that featured an unfortunately disabled and down-on-his-luck African American man saying that he essentially thought something bad was going on but saw something good, the event.

Then Channel 7 ran a story about another crime committed in Oakland - East Oakland.  Channel 7 didn't bother to talk to anyone else at the Oakland Marathon who was having a good time, African American, and obviously doing OK. Perhaps they will change this by the Sunday 10 PM news, but as of this writing what they did was to misrepresent Oakland.

The reality was that many Oaklanders and a lot of people from as far away as Denver, Colorado entered the Oakland Marathon and proved what I've said and tried to show for years: that Oakland needs a sports commission to follow on the Oakland-Alameda County Sports Commission I created in 1999, and to form the organizational seat for our bid for the 2005 Super Bowl.

The Oakland Marathon, like other large sports events in Oakland (the NBA All-Star game and the NCAA Elite Elight of 2006) happened by accident. (In the case of the All Star game it happened just because Oakland finished the rebuilt Oracle Arena. In the case of The NCAA Elite Eight, it was then-USF Athletic Director Bill Hogan who led the bid process; the City of Oakland had little to do with it.) Had Gene Brtalik not come to Oakland, the Oakland Marathon would not have happened. An Oakland Sports Commission can place Oakland in annual competition for events as well as house the intellectual and fiscal ability to stage the Oakland Marathon yet again.

While Oakland has a special events office, it's not focused on bidding for sports events. Indeed, Oakland's not a member of the National Association of Sports Commissions; it was after this blogger created the Oakland-Alameda County Sports Commission. But after my resignation from the City of Oakland in 2001, their was no effort to keep it going.

The Oakland Marathon's success should not surprise anyone and Channel 7's take was irresponsible and racist. What should surprise is that Oakland has no formal organization to draw, produce, and promote sports events.

Stay tuned.

Baylor University falls to Duke University; now Duke v. West Virginia

Related searches: baylor, duke university, where is baylor university located at, waco texas, duke

Coach Mike Krzyzewski leads the Blue Devils
It wasn't the greatest game but it did have the nation on the edge of its collective seat. Baylor University falls to Duke University 78 to 71 in the NCAA Elite Eight game played at Reliant Stadium in Houston. Now, it's Duke playing West Virginia for the right to go on to the NCAA Final Four in Indianapolis, Indiana one week from Monday.

Even though Baylor lost, it had its chances to win. But the main difference was Baylor's lack of discipline versus Duke's almost android-like mix of efficiency and emotion. Adept ball handling, offensive rebounds and second shots, and smooth threes made up for Duke's spotty defense. Eventually Duke seemed to wear down and frustrated Baylor.

Finally, the last three minutes and 36 seconds decided the game, but for this blogger it wasn't Duke overcoming its shooting slump, or Nolan Smith's threes, or their 18-5 second-half scoring run, but one play that ssealed the deal for Duke and drew curtains for Baylor.

It was Baylor's Quincy Acy rushing in to play enforcer after Duke's Jon Scheyer swung an elbow that looked like it connected with LaceDarius Dunn. Dunn could have got his SAG card with just a fall to the court, but he kept fighting for the ball; Acy rushed in and got Baylor the foul that should have went against Duke's Scheyer.

Baylor's lack of discipline was evident.

After the near-bench-clearing incident, Baylor was never the same, and Duke cruised to its eventual win. Now, Duke takes on West Virginia in a game that has the Blue Devil's giving 2 points to the Mountaineers.

Congratulations to Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski, who once again heads to the NCAA Final Four. While the lat time Duke was in this position was 2004, it's the 11th trip and seems like just yesterday even as wave after wave of improved NCAA basketball program has come and gone, there's Duke - always at least competitive.

Stay tuned.

Jean Quan for Oakland Mayor kickoff draws 200 supporters

Oakland Councilmember and candidate for Mayor of Oakland Jean Quan held her kickoff event Saturday at "Humanist Hall" one block from Broadway Auto Row (or what's left of it after the economic downturn).

The event was a rousing and surprising success.

Surprising to this blogger because of not just the number of people who came but the range of people from the perspective of well-known Oaklanders, like Assemblyman Sandre Swanson, Assemblywomen Mary Hayashi, and longtime Lakeshore Business representative and politico Pam Drake, a number of people from the Oakland School Board and the education community, and a lot of new Oaklanders.

The idea that Councilmember Jean Quan would lose votes to Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan always seemed silly in this corner, and because Kaplan's relatively new to Oakland, doesn't have the history of working with Oakland's school system, and is young. That was confirmed Saturday.

Quan's event was more like a "Jean-fest" with a Latino rap group opening it, and a group that made a song about Jean after the event wound up. Councilmember-emeritus Dick Spees was present and really showed a level of support that rivaled the young people in the audience when he led a chant for Quan. Spees was having a lot of fun.

There's a part two for this blog entry which will include the video, but it was important to report Jean's success. My only reservation is that Jean simply must develop a thicker skin when it comes to media criticism. The frank fact is many people in the room didn't care what Chip Johnson wrote about Jean or me for that matter, and probably didn't have it on their mind until she mentioned it to them and to me in the video.

The other problem was the few number of African Americans in the room. Swanson and others aside, the ranks were mostly white, Asian, and Latino - it's not enough to say "some blacks were there." What this says is Quan's not reaching the young African Americans who are politically involved in Oakland. That could be a weakness but right now, there's only Mayor Dellums to exploit that, and he's done an awful job of it. Running a stelth campaign for Mayor will not help.

If Jean can improve in those areas, she will be even more successful in the Oakland Mayor's Race. Indeed, she could beat Don Perata. I state that because Quan's got a great foundation of grass roots supporters and enough energy to fuel an election win.

Still, the Oakland Mayor's Race is still weak such that a name person like Van Jones or Robert Bobb could walk in and be the game changer. But the clock's ticking and Councilmember Quan's building support by the day. With that, the real star-in-the-making is Libby Schaaf, who's running for Jean's current seat in District 4. Her event's this Wednesday.

Stay tuned.

Sarah Palin says reload to Tea Party movement, blames media

Only Sarah Palin, who's chance of being President of the United States is a lot of Hot Air, can get away with using a term like "reload" on her Facebook page and to fire up the Tea Party movement, and then blame the media for it. The bottom line is Sarah Palin creates her own PR mess that becomes new online and television content about her, which Palin then turns into even more content about her by blaming the media. In this case, here's her tweet from her Twitter account @SarahPalinUSA:

Commonsense Conservatives & lovers of America: "Don't Retreat, Instead - RELOAD!" Pls see my Facebook page.

"lovers of America"? In other words, if I think like Sarah Palin then I love America, right? Then she uses the term in capital letters - which in Internet style is like yelling - RELOAD. Considering Sarah Palin's love of using guns to hunt, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to get the violent message. She could have picked another term. Sarah Palin could have thought to chose her words carefully, but that's not Sarah.

It would be great if Sarah Palin would think before she writes or talks, but if she did she would lose all the content juice she's created about herself. Once again Palin falls up rather than down after doing something less than smart. Amazing. There's no question that the Lord has blessed her, but one wonders if she appreciates it.

The answer will be in how far she goes in her haphazard way.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Impact of Health Care Reform on Mental Health Treatment

Congratulations to President Obama and Congress for the historic passage of the health care reform legislation, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590), along with the Health Care and Education Affordability Reconciliation Act of 2010 (HR 4872) which makes improvements to the Senate bill. The reforms should provide quality, affordable health care to nearly all Americans for the first time in our nation's history.

So what does this mean for mental health care? As a Clinical Psychologist in private practice for the past 3 years, I have seen many patients struggle to afford the psychological treatment they needed for their mental health. When I first began my practice in 2007, essentially all of my patients were paying for therapy out of pocket, or without the help of their insurance benefits. In the Bay Area, the average cost is $150 per therapy hour, with some therapists allowing a sliding scale fee for therapy. My patients’ average length of treatment is approximately 4 months of weekly therapy, with some coming in for brief, specific types of treatment, and others choosing to engage in long term treatment for 2 years or more. While many of these patients have health insurance, their insurance benefits frequently do not cover their psychotherapy because their mental health diagnosis is not considered parity. (see What The California Mental Health Parity Law Means: AB 88.) Further, in the face of many job loses and the rapid decline of the American economy in recent times, many patients found themselves no longer able to afford to pay for psychotherapy out of pocket.

"These reforms will allow Americans to achieve full health and recovery through significant investments in expanded health care access, including mental health, substance use, rehabilitation and prevention services, as well as collaborative care and chronic care management," said Laurel Stine, director of federal relations at the - The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law. "This is particularly notable given that four of the ten leading causes of disability in the United States are mental disorders and 87 percent of Americans cite lack of insurance coverage as the top reason for not seeking mental health services," Stine added.

"Furthermore, these reforms are truly significant triumphs in the integration of mental health in health care," said Stine. "Building upon the recent congressional victory of mental health parity in 2008, millions of Americans will have parity benefits and the guarantee of mental health coverage and will not live in fear of being denied coverage due to a pre-existing condition, such as a mental disorder."

Only time will tell to what extent the health care reform will significantly influence the management of mental health problems in the United States. However, this appears to be a step in the right direction in addressing the dilemma of untreated mental illness in this country.

This article was composed by Christina Villarreal, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist in Oakland, CA

Sarah Palin gets reality show; political career in the tank

With her new reality TV Show, Sarah Palin's Alaska, Sarah Palin officially kissed her political career goodbye. Once a favorite as the possible Republican nominee for the 2012 Presidential Race, Sarah Palin's star fell when she lost the voting at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in February, gaining just seven percent of the vote, and way behind Rep. Ron Paul's 31 percent, and Mitt Romney's 22 percent.

But Sarah Palin was never really interested in being POTUS; Sarah wants to be known. Famous. Rich. Palin smartly - yes, smartly - cashed in on the spotlight she was thrown into after what initially seemed to be an angry reaction to first, being the whipping girl of the Republican Party after GOP Presidential Candidate Senator John McCain's loss to now-President Barack Obama in 2008, then being cast as sort of a pop-culture sex-symbol of buffoonery, Sarah Palin found her sea-legs as a Fox News Commentator and worked more in the direction of TV personality than future elected official.

The problem Palin created for herself is the vast array of recorded statements that may seem harmless today, but would come back to destroy her run for president, if she decided to do that. Sarah Palin did not know Africa was a continent and that was widely reported by Fox News:

And there are other examples of Sarah Palin's lack of knoweledge that would be thrown right back in her face if she ran for president.

But Sarah Palin the reality TV show star is real. She's going to make a lot of money from it and gain even more fame, but viewers will also watch to see if Palin makes any other stupid comment. Sorry to say, but that's the reputation she's carved for herself.

Stay tuned.

Sandra Bullock and Jesse James: Tim McGraw supports Bullock

Related searches: Brigitte Daguerre, Melissa Smith, Michelle McGee, Bombshell McGee, Jesse James mistresses, Jesse James affairs, Sandra Bullock news and updates

This Sandra Bullock and Jesse James update: Country Music Super Star Tim McGraw, who also played Bullock's husband in The Blind Side, offered words of support and encouragement in the wake of the news that Jesse James allegedly had affairs with as many as four women, from Michelle "Bombshell" McGee to Melissa Smith and Brigitte Daguerre, and another woman, not named as of this writing.

According to People Magazine and Entertainment Tonight in Canada, Tim McGraw said he had not reached out to Sandra Bullock, but "You know, she's got a lot on her plate. I just wish her nothing but the best." McGraw said Sandra Bullock was tough and "I'm not that tough."

Not many people are.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Tennessee v. Ohio State one for the ages, but no-foul-call a problem

The Tennessee Volunteers upset the Ohio State Buckeyes in a classic, down-to-the-wire 76-73 NCAA Tournament game that had the full attention of the crowd at The Royal Exchange in San Francisco (especially since the home region St. Mary's Gaels were being blown out by Baylor and eventually lost 72 to 49.

The Tennessee v. Ohio State game was great, but what's bothersome is the way it ended - the last shot. That foul not called. The one ESPN doesn't mention in its recap. The one that's the talk of every forum on the game. It's no way to end a game, and it's no wonder Ohio State's Evan Turner walked off the court without shaking anyone's hand.

It's a non-call that will be talked about or dismissed for years. But it's over. Tennessee beat Ohio State to be part of the NCAA Elite Eight.

Stay tuned.

Jesse James mistresses pictures new hot search - why?

The new never-ending story of Sandra Bullock and Jesse James is undoubtedly a sad one but it's ever sadder still with the new demand for photos of all four alleged mistresses, Melissa Smith, Brigitte Daguerre, an alleged Mistress 4 who's represented by Gloria Allred, and the Nazi-bikini-wearing Michelle "Bombshell" McGee. (Yes, the line has been used before here.)

Of all the so-called mistresses, none of them are as attractive as Jesse James' wife, Sandra Bullock, so the demand for pictures is a bit unfortunate, not to mention questionable.

Tatoos all over the body look like permanent dirt to this blogger; to each his or her own is certainly the rule here, but let's get serious. Sandra Bullock's a hot, successful, powerful woman without tatoos.

Jesse James allegedly cheating on Bullock is awful, but to do so with a group of women that combined can't even can't hold a candle to Sandra Bullock is an insult to Bullock let alone American celebrity culture.

Why can't he have an affair with some hot female Hollywood studio exec?  They do exist, you know?  Someone who could help Jesse get more high-dollar roles for his wife, Sandra Bullock.    Now that's called thinking with both parts of the body.

That Jesse James is associated with this crew is almost an assault on the senses. Hopefully none of these stories is true, but if they are, why select women who aren't as accomplished as Sandra Bullock?

OK, Brigitte Daguerre lacks the tats and isn't a stripper. Yeah! But she still doesn't look as good as Sandra Bullock, openly claims to have slept with Jesse James, and isn't a studio exec, so no points there. Plus, Brigitte Daguerre says she's kept 195 text messages allegedly from Jesse James.

But how do we really know the texts are from Jesse James? All James has to do is say "That's not my number" and her story's toast.

Unless Daguerre has a voicemail she saved. You know, like the one Jamie Grubbs saved from Tiger Woods. No record of that as of this writing.

Stay tuned.

The psychological impact of being in the spotlight: the emotional struggle of celebrities

Most of us imagine feeling happy and content should we ever achieve the wealth, fame and notoriety associated with being a celebrity. However, the experience of being a person who is highly visible in the media can take a tremendous toll on one’s psychological functioning. Even the most grounded actors, musicians, professional athletes, and high-ranking officials are vulnerable to the deleterious effects of being in the media spotlight. In his research, Jib Fowles, author of Star Struck: Celebrity Performers and the American Public (Smithsonian Institute Press), found that the average age of death for celebrities overall, was 58, compared to an average of 72 years for other Americans. His findings also revealed that celebrities are almost four times more likely to kill themselves than the average American. This article serves to explore the negative psychological impact of being in the media spotlight, which leads many celebrities to struggle emotionally.

As you read the following points, consider which celebrities have exhibited these traits to their own detriment.

No privacy. Everything celebrities do is publicized for the world to see, discuss, and mock. We love reading about the gaffes and gossip of the rich and famous, the more embarrassing, the better. A celebrity’s natural response to this level of intense scrutiny is increased self-consciousness and paranoia. Many celebrities, particularly those in the political arena, grow weary of the unrealistic standards they are held to, and begin to feel resentful of the limitations of being in the public spotlight. They may “act out” in response to feeling suffocated by their carefully constructed public image. Self-destructive, acting out behaviors often include unsavory sexual appetites, scandalous liaisons, volatile outbursts, or other destructive patterns such as uncontrolled substance use. Exposure of their behaviors by the media can lead to overwhelming feelings of shame when their public image is destroyed.

Lost sense of self. Many celebrities feel unable to assert their individuality in a media world fraught with stereotypes. As the media and fans develop a false perception of a celebrity (which is often one-dimensional) a celebrity begins to lose track of the multi-faceted aspects of their own personality. This causes them to make choices that no longer reflect their true self, which further compromises their sense of identity. Over time, they feel increasingly isolated and alone and have difficulty trusting others.

Loss of challenges. The experience of reaching the pinnacle of your goals and realizing it’s not as fulfilling as you think can be disconcerting. You’ve landed your dream job and begin settling in after your first big break…at first it’s exhilarating, but then you eventually wonder, “Is this all there is?” When a celebrity begins to feel they have nothing left to strive for – i.e. they’ve “made it”, suddenly they are left struggling to fill that empty emotional space with something even more thrilling or risqué. Often celebrities turn to taking increasingly bigger and more dangerous risks, as a way to regain a sense of challenge.

Imposter syndrome. Some celebrities are bewildered by their fame, knowing that they are far from perfect. The feeling of being an imposter occurs when people don’t feel they deserve their success. Celebrities may also fear being discovered, i.e. that the public will find out that they’re not as talented, intelligent, or attractive as they are portrayed in the media. They become keenly aware that their fans have idealized them in a way that is impossible to match in real life. Consequently, celebrities can begin to feel their gifts are no longer enough, leaving them with a sense of inadequacy.

Quest for media spotlight immortality. Many celebrities fear their fame is fleeting, which leads them to constantly obsess about losing the attention of their fans and the media. After a celebrity’s fame peaks, it is often a brutal ride downward as they garner less attention from others. The loss of the spotlight can leave people feeling bereft of purpose and importance. As a result celebrities often become desperate to regain notoriety and in doing so, become prone to buffoonery. In the wake of this loss, they often turn to self-destructive behaviors as a means to cope with overwhelming feelings of failure.

This article was composed by Christina Villarrreal, Ph.D., Clinical Psychologist in Oakland, CA