Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Jackie Evancho : YouTube talent is Susan Boyle of 2010

It's hard to believe it until you see her, but Jackie Evancho's a 10-year old Opera soprano from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania who sounds like someone much older. You have to look and listen twice, and then again a third time, to believe what you're seeing and hearing. This YouTube talent that is Jackie Evancho is the Susan Boyle of 2010.

Why Susan Boyle?

Because like Susan Boyle, Jackie Evancho delivers the unexpected. Once again, we're wowed by someone who doesn't look like they can do what they do. Even Howie Mandel said that people could not believe it was Jackie Evancho doing the singing for Jackie Evancho. But it was.

The only place Jackie Evancho falls just short of being the exact match of Susan Boyle is that she's singing Opera. If the 10-year old were singing "Somewhere Over The Rainbow," the Internet would explode in response to her.

Still, let's see what happens over the next few days as Jackie Evancho advances in America's Got Talent.

Bank of America and Wells Fargo gouging - Jerry Brown should step in

California Attorney General Jerry Brown should look into this. According to The Associated Press via The Huffington Post, Wells Fargo was ordered to pay $205 million to its customers as part of a successful class-action lawsuit.

What Wells Fargo was doing was allowing debit purchases to go through when a customer's account was overdrawn. But Bank of America has the same practice, and this blogger experienced it after a client bounced a check.

What Bank of America does is pile on one payment when you're overdrawn, thus triggering another overdraft charge and making more money from it. Then, when the non-paid vendor tries to collect again, the Bank of America issues a second overdraft charge!

My sources in and out of Bank of America have confirmed this problem. In other words, Bank of America has practiced the same process Wells Fargo was accused of and is now ordered to pay its customers back to settle.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup accused Wells Fargo of profiteering

According to the AP, U.S. District Judge William Alsup, who's in the Northern District Court of California in San Francisco, accused Wells Fargo of profiteering, specifically "Internal bank memos and e-mails leave no doubt that, overdraft revenue being a big profit center, the bank's dominant, indeed sole, motive was to maximize the number of overdrafts."

In this blogger's experience with his Bank of America account, there were as many as not one, but three overdraft penalties drawn in one day, and four in two days, separated by the weekend, from two vendors!

What should happen is simple: one overdraft penalty for one charge unpaid. That's it. Bank of America should be the focus of California Attorney General Jerry Brown's gaze, and sooner rather than later.

Steve Slater and his dramatic exit by Nikky Raney

Steve Slater's name has been in the news and all over headlines for the past couple days for quitting his job as a flight attendant after arguing with a rude passenger. Slater decided to slide down JetBlue's plane emergency chute.

Slater was sent to jail for his dramatic exit which also doubled as his resignation from his job as a flight attendant. Some people are calling Slater a hero, but it's hard to understand how causing a scene publicly can be considered heroic behavior.

According to police reports, he cursed out a passenger, grabbed a few beers, abandoned the plane using its emergency chute, then called it a day.

That doesn't sound like heroic behavior.

Let's see what new information comes out within the next few days.

Paris Hilton's Partying Caught Up to Her Gut

Paris Hilton has grown a gut! Paris's party ways this summer have caught up to her and she proves - for once - that she is truly human! She wears a tight dress that shows off how much of a pauch belly she has. The Daily Mail agrees:

And it appears as though her month of hard partying may be wreaking havoc on Paris' figure, as despite being stick thin, the tight dress showed off an unfortunately obvious paunch, likely the result of the magnums of champagne she was seen downing on holiday.

I cannot believe Paris or even her people let her step out looking like that! Paris could pass for being a few months pregnant with how much her gut sticks outs. That or she's got bad bloat because she is starving herself! What do you think it is - beer belly or bloat? Oh, she would never drink beer, I meant champagne gut! Only us mere mortals would get beer gut!

Victoria Beckham Pregnancy Rumors Swirl by Tina Musial

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 29:  Victoria Bec...Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Victoria Beckham is the latest high profile star to fall to the pregnancy rumors. Some people are so sure of this pregnancy - like Famous Magazine in Australia - that they are running the news on the cover of their magazine! With the Beckham's - Victoria and superstar soccer player husband David - suing several tabloids for false stories, you'd think that Famous must have a credible source in order to even think about a cover with this topic!

Posh and Becks are expanding their family. Romeo, Brooklyn and Cruz will have either a brother or sister, Posh must be wishing for a little girl by now! It's a new beginning for the couple, this week we reveal the pact that saved their marriage.

Victoria and David's youngest is already five or six years old. I wonder how they would feel about another sibling? We'll wait until some pictures emerge of Victoria looking heavy until we decide if we think she is truly pregnant or not. She's so thin, it won't take long to notice. What's your guess as to her pregnancy status?
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Isiah Thomas NBA or Misogynist Club? by Suzannah B. Troy

Isiah Thomas does not belong in the NBA but on my blog misogynistNYC. Too many women in NYC know what it is to endure a hostile environment and also be lied and trashed about.

Been there, endured that and my loyal blog readers on my main blog read my line "New Yorkers threshold for corruption is higher than our tallest sky scrapers."  Well the same for misogynist, hateful, hostile, down right creepy unwanted sexual behavior towards women and way too young girls.

The USA has a long way too go with regard to acceptable treatment of it's women.  Sadly compared to other countries we are light years ahead. I have nine letters published in The New York Times and they are hard to find.  You have to go The New York Times website, put my name in the search engine and than hit since 1851, I know I look great for my age and than hit advance search.

Here is my letter on Women and Porn.  Many years ago I made up the term "geo-sexual politics" and it means we women have come a long way but we still ain't equal.  For Mae West lovers check out the double entendre I snuck into that letter!

Could the NBA be called the Misogynist Club?  Yes.  I am blocking out the name of the Knick player that coerced a young intern to give him oral sex and she did not want to do it.  I really can't remember his name and I thought he should be punished and censured.  What a disgusting guy.  His behavior was exposed in the entire scandal that broke when the Isiah Thomas scandal broke.  I do not go to basketball games anymore.  I would never buy a Knick anything.  I don't want to support a club that is so abusive and exploitive of women.

Oakland Mayor's Race: SEIU 1021 endorsement meeting's clumsy start

The Oakland Mayor's Race is not without its share of groups who think they can influence the race by excluding certain candidates. The Oakland SEIU 1021 Union Organization is just one of them.

As this is written, the Oakland SEIU 1021 is about to hold its interviews of candidates for the Oakland Mayor's Race. From many conversations held Tuesday, it appears the SEIU finally got its act together and contacted all of the candidates, instead of just three: Former State Senator Don Perata, and Oakland Councilmembers Jean Quan and Rebecca Kaplan (District Four and At-Large, respectively.)

Now, from the information communicated to this blogger, the SEIU's talking to more than just the three, although as of this writing the Joe Tuman for Mayor campaign was left out of the SEIU process.

UPDATE: a text from the Joe Tuman Campaign explains that after "several phone calls" they were invited for later tonight.

In all, it was an awful state of affairs punctuated by this email letter to Ariana Casanova, the event organizer with the Oakland SEIU from the "Friends of Terrance Candell for Mayor" campaign (paragraphs broken by this blogger):

Dr. Terrance Candell calls out other candidates 

Dear Ariana,

You met with our candidate on February 3rd, 2010. Other unions have met with him and are close to endorsement. How, then, can you act as if he does not exist. Our constituents within your union have told us that you intended to discriminate against Terence Candell. We hope that this is not evidence of that. Our campaign never received any notice of Wednesday's interviews of Oakland Mayoral Candidates.

We assume that means that we will be allowed participation without having to render advance questions, since you never advanced them to us. Do not misunderstand. Our candidate is the frontrunner in this race. The rest just have KTVU, who has ignored him since he paid them $10,000 for airtime for his campaign.

Dr. Candell was the first Oakland Mayoral Candidate on the ballot. Don MacCleay and Greg Harland are also on the ballot. Terence Candell has a regular show on local Channel 78 Comcast. You might want to check that out. Your membership deserves a chance to hear him.

We understand that you don't like him. However, you cannot deceive the people and your membership by denying him due process. That is very unprofessional.

Dyra - Campaign Chair

Friends of Candell

Green Party Candidate Don Macleay was also not contacted, so he sent this email to Ariana:

I am also asking to attend and particpate requesting the SEIU 1021 endorsment in the Mayor's race.

Please let me know how to proceed.
Is there a questionaire?
What time should we arrive?
What else should I know or do?

Don Macleay

Who's Ariana Casanova?

Ariana Casanova's an organizer with the Oakland SEIU and an activist involved in several issues from the Nik Nak Liquor Store to protests against banks during the financial crisis, and who this blogger called three times without a single return phone call. I've never seen or met Ariana Casanova and I had a lot of questions for her after my conversations.

According to several sources, Ariana Casanova's not shy about telling Oakland Mayor's Race candidates if they're even worth paying attention to. The woman with the cool-sounding name allegedly told one candidate he needed to raise $325,000 and that he should not even try because he was not going to win.

That unguarded view is what started the problem where candidates were excluded.

When this space got word of the problem, a text was sent to Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan who was set to participate in the SEIU event. The text communicated the intention of exposing the SEIU game playing and encouraged her to back out.

After a time, the problem, at least for Dr. Terrance Candell, was solved. He's part of the SEIU process as is Don Macleay.

Oakland Mayor's Race candidate Greg Harland, who doesn't want union backing, said he rejected the SEIU's last minute invitation.

However it turns out, if the SEIU handled its interview process the way it's explained here, and by all accounts this is accurate, their final recommendation for the Oakland Mayor's Race is not worth paying attention to. That's also true for The League of Women Voters.

Stay tuned.

Fox News popularity explained by Nikky Raney

After writing a 26 page long research paper about Fox News' conservative bias for my college English Composition class it's simple to explain why Fox News is known as the "most popular" or "most watched" news station.

Doing the research paper involved actually watching programs such as The O'Reilly Factor and viewing segments on the show. Along with comparing the headlines and online content of Fox News as opposed to CNN's online content.

Instead of posting the 26 page long paper - this post will just be a simply explanation as to why Fox News gets the most views.

Fox News is the only news source of its kind. Fox News is where all the conservatives go to watch their news primarily. Fox News viewership is primarily white older males on the conservative sides.

On the opposite side of the spectrum there are news stations such as CNN, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, etc. All the aforementioned stations are not conservative. Some may argue that the stations are not unbiased and objective - and most will say that most those stations lean to the left.

So, there is ONE station that leans to the right, but many stations that seem to lean toward the left.

The people who enjoy the news that leans to the left are all going to go to each of those stations. So all of those "left leaning" stations are competing for the views of those who watch those stations.

Fox News has no competition when it comes to news that leans far to the right and is sensationalistic. Now, conservatives and liberals alike will skim and view a variety of news stations and liberals will sometimes watch Fox and conservatives will watch CNN - but the majority of conservatives stick to Fox News. There are not a bunch of conservative news stations fighting for viewership of the conservatives.

The other news stations ARE competing for those viewers.

So. Let's say there are 50 conservatives and 50 liberals. All 50 conservatives are going to watch Fox News, but 20 liberals might watch CNN, another 20 might watch MSNBC, and 10 of them might watch CBS.

In that case the reason that Fox News is getting the most viewers is because it is the only station of its kind.

Now, there is much more that can be said about Fox News. Lots of time and research has gone into explaining and proving the conservative bias of Fox News, but for now that is all that needs to be explained.

Image taken from

"I firmly believe that respect is a lot more important, and a lot greater, than popularity."-- Julius Erving

Steven Slater: in poll, 60 percent think Slater's a hero

Steven Slater 
Former JetBlue Flight Attendant Steven Slater may have lost his job, and shown the worst behavior of a stewart in history, but he's considered a hero by many. In fact, the Zennie62 Poll revealed that almost 60 percent of 472 voters polled online as of this writing think he's a hero.

That's right, a hero.

One Zennie62 poll commenter wrote:

Did you see that mark on his forehead? Then being accosted by that passenger. I hear it cost him 25,000 for deploying that escape ramp. There was no real harm done,he lost his job.Let it go,lesson learned.

Of the now, 480 votes (the poll results change every minute), 57.92 percent think Steven Slater's a hero, 21.04 percent think he should have kept his cool, 12.71 percent blame JetBlue's working conditions, but think Slater should have kept his cool, 6.25 percent think he endangered lives, and 2.08 percent think he should have not taken the job in the first place.

Slater jumped ship

Steve Slater got into an argument with a passenger over an overhead bag that fell out of the bin hit him on the head. After the passenger called him names, he fired back with some of his own, then got on the PA system and said he had enough, went into the galley and got a beer, then activated the emergency chute, slid down it, went home and screwed his partner. When the police came, Slater was caught in the act.

Too funny.

Now, Slater's out of jail and a Facebook page has been put up to help raise money for his defense. This space disagrees with NewsOne, but can see understand the frustration with uncivil passengers. Still, here's the Facebook page: Steven Slater Facebook.

What do you think about Steven Slater? Take my poll:

create a free poll on

Steven Slater - why Jet Blue former flight attendant was wrong

Busy Lufthansa flight-attendants in kitchenImage via Wikipedia
Flight Attendants are the ones we count on 
Unless JetBlue CEO David Barger has a change of heart, his flight attendant Steven Slater is out of a job.

And while Slater may be richer from it, what's disturbing is that his act of total self-absorbtion is being hailed and celebrated around the country.

Not here.

When you're assigned an exit row seat, the flight attendant asks you if you take responsibility for opening the door and going through the safety steps necessary if the plane gets into some kind of water accident. I always answer "yes" with gusto.

The job of a flight attendant is to answer the call with gusto on every flight. Yes, I understand that packed planes, cut budgets, and the unraveling of social civility have taken their toll on you, but it's far better to make that a union issue than to do what Steven Slater did: jump ship.

What Steven Slater did was all about Steven Slater and no one else. If that's the message flight attendants want to send, it's a sad year and decade for air travel.

What do you think about Steven Slater? Take my poll:

create a free poll on

Lindsay Lohan's Judge Quits Case by Tina Musial

This mugshot is found from http://www.perezhil...Image via Wikipedia

Lindsay Lohan's presiding Judge Marsha Revel couldn't take the heat any more. Judge Revel removed herself from Lindsay Lohan's case allegedly because of some backroom phone calls the lawyers did not approve of. These lawyers met with Judge Revel on Friday to discuss the improprieties - but she just now vacated the case.

Now, what exactly didn't the lawyers approve of? According to TMZ:

We're told one of the issues -- Judge Revel took it upon herself to make contact with people from the Morningside Recovery rehab facility and then selected Morningside, even though it was not on the list of recommended facilities by her own court-appointed experts. Ultimately, Lindsay's lawyer convinced Judge Revel to send LiLo to UCLA. But the issue was raised on Friday.
Should it really matter that the judge made phone calls? She was checking around, getting background info on Lindsay Lohan. the lawyers should know that the judges do not follow gossip blogs, therefore she had to scoop out some info elsewhere!

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JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater quits - take Zennie62 poll

Steven Slater, who literally jumped from his job as a flight attendant at JetBlue Flight Attendant, is a hero to some people, and a goat to others, including me.  He's also out of jail, now and said to be pondering his next move.

As a constant passenger, this blogger and other travelers rely on flight attendants to keep their cool. Steven Slater didn't do that at all. He lost it and jumped out.

Keith Olbermann's right that Steven Slater will get his own reality show, and great, but what does this say for how flight attendants will be regarded in the future?

What do you think about Steven Slater? Take my poll:

create a free poll on

Cardinals Reds fight - Phillips vs. Molina

Yadier MolinaImage via Wikipedia
Yadier Molina 

A stupid brawl broke out between Brandon Phillips and Yadier Molina during the St. Louis Cardinals vs. Cincinnati Reds MLB game. What was a jawing match at first, turned into a full on brawl involving several players on both sides.

Johnny Cueto used his cleats to hit someone; not cool, to say the least.

Eventually, both managers Dusty Baker and Tony La Russa were ejected from the game.

But I've got to say, this blog post by St. Louis Today's Bernie Miklasz was just plain dumb. What's this guy want, blood lust. He blogs:

Of course, Molina stood up against the Reds' disturber of the peace, Brandon Phillips, in the bottom of the first Tuesday. Phillips, being an obvious phony, tapped Molina on the shin guards as he approached the plate for his first at-bat. Hold on now: if you "hate" all of the Cardinals, and if you have called all of them "little bitches," then why would you try to buddy up to Molina there? What kind of chicken manure move is that? After he dropped hate speech and borderline homophobic slurs on Molina and his 24 teammates, Phillips had a sudden urge to play nice?

Unbelievable. Talk about people who like to see stupid fights. Man!

Oakland City Council Race: Libby Schaaf files papers for run

Libby Schaaf, who's constant attention to detail and hard work ethic has earned her California Attorney General Jerry Brown's endorsement, officially filed her paper work to run for the Oakland City Council District Four Seat on Tuesday.

Even before Libby filed the papers, she managed to raise over $76,000. This space supports Libby Schaaf for City Council District Four Seat.

The question is, did the other candidates file their papers?  If not, then the field of challengers will have been reduced and we will know who the competitors finally are.

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - any black people in it?

Ok, this space, having just written a cool blog post on how the movie Scott Pilgrim vs. The World signaled a rebirth of comic books, was internally compelled to ask this question: Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: will it have any black people in it?

The concern comes from this video blogger being in the position, yet again, of being excited about a "geek culture movie" that dominated Comic Con 2010, then getting caught up in the hype, only to realize that the movie has no one in it that's black.

After awhile, that's grows tiresome and here's the point where that "awhile" has past.

I've not yet seen Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, but I plan to, and I'm bringing my "Blackometer" with me. That's my patented device for determining how many blacks are in a movie in roles that count.

In other words, were the star, in this case Michael Cera, who plays Scott Pilgrim, has a speaking moment with them. You know, something beyond a high-five where the black person's not doing something identified as a "black thing" but in this case, a "geek thing" like, well, doing what the rest of the characters who are Scott Pilgrim's friends do. In other words, being one of them.

Now before you tell me that the Asian girl who's 17 was written in the comic book, please, they can take liberties in other areas, and they have done so with parts of the story, too.

But I'm getting ahead of myself here. What started this pattern of thought was a cast photo from Scott Pilgrim vs. The World that was all white, save for the one Asian girl. Ouch.

I've made my point; I've got my Blackometer at the ready: it can read zero, one, two, or three. Let's hope Scott Pilgrim vs. The World's three or off the scale.

Stay tuned.