Archive for April, 2011

Message and Notice from the President on the Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Syria

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Release Time: 
For Immediate Release

Dear Mr. Speaker:    (Dear Mr. President:)

Section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. 1622(d), provides for the automatic termination of a national emergency, unless, prior to the anniversary date of its declaration, the President publishes in the Federal Register and transmits to the Congress a notice stating that the emergency is to continue in effect beyond the anniversary date.  In accordance with this provision, I have sent to the Federal Register for publication the enclosed notice stating that the national emergency with respect to the actions of the Government of Syria declared in Executive Order 13338 of May 11, 2004, and relied upon for additional steps taken in Executive Order 13399 of April 25, 2006, and Executive Order 13460 of February 13, 2008, is to continue in effect beyond May 11, 2011.

The Syrian government has reduced the number of foreign fighters bound for Iraq — although the fighters have still created serious problems there — but its actions and policies, including continuing support for terrorist organizations, damaging the Lebanese government's ability to function, and pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and missile programs, pose a continuing unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.  For these reasons, I have determined that it is necessary to continue in effect the national emergency declared with respect to this threat and to maintain in force the sanctions to address this national emergency.  In addition, the United States condemns the use of violence against peacefully demonstrating citizens in Syria, and calls on the Syrian government to respect human rights and to forge a credible path to a future of greater freedom, democracy, opportunity, and justice.  As we have communicated to the Syrian government directly, the United States will consider changes in the policies and actions of the Government of Syria in determining whether to continue or terminate this national emergency in the future.

                        Sincerely,

                        BARACK OBAMA

 

      On May 11, 2004, pursuant to his authority under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, 50 U.S.C. 1701-1706, and the Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2003, Public Law 108-175, the President issued Executive Order 13338, in which he declared a national emergency with respect to the actions of the Government of Syria.  To deal with this national emergency, Executive Order 13338 authorized the blocking of property of certain persons and prohibited the exportation or reexportation of certain goods to Syria.  On April 25, 2006, and February 13, 2008, the President issued Executive Order 13399 and Executive Order 13460, respectively, to take additional steps with respect to this national emergency.

      The President took these actions to deal with the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States constituted by the actions of the Government of Syria in supporting terrorism, maintaining its then-existing occupation of Lebanon, pursuing weapons of mass destruction and missile programs, and undermining U.S. and international efforts with respect to the stabilization and reconstruction of Iraq.

      The Syrian government has reduced the number of foreign fighters bound for Iraq — although the fighters have still created serious problems there — but its actions and policies, including continuing support for terrorist organizations, damaging the Lebanese government's ability to function, and pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and missile programs, continue to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States.  As a result, the national emergency declared on May 11, 2004, and the measures adopted on that date, on April 25, 2006, in Executive Order 13399, and on February 13, 2008, in Executive Order 13460, to deal with that emergency must continue in effect beyond May 11, 2011.  Therefore, in accordance with section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. 1622(d), I am continuing for 1 year the national emergency declared with respect to certain actions of the Government of Syria.  In addition, the United States condemns the use of violence against peacefully demonstrating citizens in Syria, and calls on the Syrian government to respect human rights and to forge a credible path to a future of greater freedom, democracy, opportunity, and justice.  The United States will consider changes in the policies and actions of the Government of Syria in determining whether to continue or terminate this national emergency in the future and would welcome progress by the Government of Syria on these matters.  This notice shall be published in the Federal Register and transmitted to the Congress.

        BARACK OBAMA

THE WHITE HOUSE,
April 29, 2011.

Source: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/04/29/message-and-notice-president-continuation-national-emergency-respect-syr

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Watch UFC 129 online tonight! ‘St. Pierre vs Shields’ live stream/PPV details

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

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Katy Perry’s Australian Purr Perfume Launch

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Adding to the slew of celebrity-fronted scents, Katy Perry launched her new “Purr” fragrance in Melbourne, Australia earlier today (April 30).

The “E.T.” singer looked radiant as she posed with her cat-shaped perfume bottle, wearing a shiny black and purple dress and black peep toe Christian Louboutin pumps.

Meanwhile, Katy, who is married to British funnyman Russell Brand, has just filed suit against Australia’s “NW” magazine after they printed a claim that the she was involved in an “intimate relationship” with record producer Benny Blanco.

Perry filed legal papers against the publication earlier this week, which read, “By reason of the publication of the article the plaintiff (Perry) has been gravely injured in her reputation and feelings (and) has suffered distress, embarrassment and humiliation.”

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Tom Hanks Says His College Years Inspired ‘Larry Crowne’

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

‘I was in junior college because it was my only option,’ actor tells MTV News.
By Eric Ditzian


Tom Hanks with Julia Roberts in “Larry Crowne”
Photo: Universal Pictures

The first time Tom Hanks stepped behind the camera on a big-screen production, he captured a story set in the early 1960s, a period he had lived through as a preteen. But the particulars of “That Thing You Do!” — a rock band that rides a hit song to fame but can’t follow through on their initial promise — couldn’t have been further from Hanks’ California childhood.

His second directorial effort, however, was inspired by events from his past, even if it does not seem so at first glance. In “Larry Crowne” — the upcoming comedy he also co-wrote and in which he stars with Julia Roberts — Hanks plays the title character, a guy fired from his job at a big-box retail store and forced to go back to college, where he meets a professor named Mercy Tainot (played by Roberts). But as Hanks told MTV News as part of our Summer Movie Preview week, he actually relates to his character’s plight.

“My first years in college were much like Larry’s,” he told us. “I was in junior college because it was my only option — if I didn’t enroll right after high school I would have had no path to any future. Two years in junior college became the jumping-off point for everything that came later and I think this was the same for others — not just kids out of high school, but guys back from Vietnam, wives going back to school after their kids were older, and folks who were looking to change their lives for the better.”

While the genesis of the film came from Hanks’ early college years, he enlisted Nia Vardalos, whose “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” he’d produced in 2002, to collaborate on the script.

“Nia and I talk all the time and laugh constantly, and I wanted a woman’s voice to be a part of the movie, since Mercy Tainot is in a comparable life situation as Larry,” Hanks explained. “Nia worked exclusively on the screenplay, based on meetings she and I had, for a number of drafts. Then the script sat in a drawer for a couple of years. I then worked exclusively on the screenplay through the complete production. The story evolved through both of us, though, and what I was shooting for was built up with every draft.”

Roberts and Hanks have worked together before, on the political drama “Charlie Wilson’s War,” but they hadn’t shared the screen on lighter material. He does, though, see a connection between that earlier film and “Larry Crowne” in that “we were playing real people in real circumstances.” Similarities aside, Hanks simply knew Roberts was the perfect person for the role.

“Julia is Mercy Tainot — funny, wicked intelligent, driven and not one to suffer fools at all,” he said. “But make no mistake of Julia’s ability to find what is funny in a scene smack up against what is authentic.”

For all the comedic elements of the film, there is a dramatic arc for both characters. Larry, for instance, essentially has to reinvent himself in middle age. And if Hanks had to refashion his own life, he joked that he’d strike out in a rather unexpected direction: “I’d go for the Iggy Pop look and gravitas.”

Check out everything we’ve got on “Larry Crowne.”

For breaking news, celebrity columns, humor and more — updated around the clock — visit MTVMoviesBlog.com.

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Interview with Rick Broadbent

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

MotoGPBlog was lucky enough to catch up with Rick Broadbent, Times journalist and author of Ring of Fire. You can also read our review of his book, and while you’re there, pick up your copy though our Amazon store – see links at the end of the articles.

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ET Flashback ’99: Britney Spears

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Britney Spears is making headlines with her new album, Femme Fatale, and we have the pop superstar when she was just 17!

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HTC ThunderBolt poised for an update?

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Android Central

Remember that HTC ThunderBolt ROM that leaked out a few days ago? Looks like Verizon’s getting ready to push it (or something close to it?), as Android Central Forums member jim302 spotted that the release notes have been posted in the usual place and the build numbers match up. Here’s the changelog:

Web Browsing and Data Access

  • Enhanced data connectivity when accessing the Verizon 3G network

Email and Messaging

  •  SMS and MMS messages are stored properly in the Messaging
  • Application (Inbox, Sent, etc.).

Additional Device Features

  • Timing for device activation has been improved.
  • “Backup Assistant” is correctly displayed in the Application menu.
  • Stability improvements for data centric applications such as
  • Facebook, KAYAK, Yahoo! Mail, My Verizon and more.
  • Accurate location is displayed when accessing the Weather Widget
  • Quickly load GPS updates for Google Maps and VZ Navigator™.

Look for it to push out, oh, any time now, we suppose.

Source: Verizon (pdf); via: Android Central Forums

Edit: Tweaked the story and headline a tad.

HTC ThunderBolt poised for an update? posted originally by Android Central

Sponsored by Android Cases and Accessories


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Dana White UFC 129 scrum: The prez talks Fedor-Hendo, Diaz and Cain/Jones injuries

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

The UFC officially opened for business today in Toronto with the final prefight press conference. After a 50-minute presser, Dana White stuck around to lend clarity to some of the bigger stories around MMA.

- Jon Jones’ hand injury will probably keep him out six months. Earlier today, the Jones Camp answered allegations of ducking the fight against Rashad Evans.

- White confirmed that Nick Diaz’s Strikeforce contract allows him to box, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he will. White plans on meeting with him after UFC 129 to figure things out.

- During the press conference, Jake Shields confirmed that his trainer Cesar Gracie is not in Toronto this week. Visa issues prevented Gracie from entering the country (43:30 mark).

- White said Royce Gracie is pressing him to face Matt Hughes at UFC in Rio in August. He’s very hesitant to make the fight. Gracie was present at the presser and White said he was going to meet with the legend shortly.

- According to MMAjunkie, Jason Miller was recently signed by the UFC because as White said, "he was banned from fighting on Showtime and CBS." Matchmaker Joe Silva wanted him, so they signed the MMA veteran. This from USA Today:

"Mayhem, he’s banished from CBS for life. In my opinion, he was a guy that was put into a position — first of all, we control what happens inside that Octagon; the fighters do not. In our organization, you don’t see melees break out in huge fights. And you see what happens when somebody does cross the line and does stuff like that," White said.

"I think Mayhem was put in a bad position. And I don’t know — I haven’t talked to Mayhem about this; this is just what I believe, in conversations I’ve had with Joe Silva."

- White said Strikeforce is working on a fight between Fedor Emelianenko and Dan Henderson. He has zero involvement in the negotiations. UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta has taken the lead on trying to put that match together.

- White said he’s disappointed with the ratings for Season 13 of "The Ultimate Fighter," but blames the time slot. White isn’t happy that Spike bumped TUF up to 9 p.m. ET and put "Coal" at 10. He said TUF is battling some big-time programming on television in that time slot.

- He expects Cain Velasquez back in October. He could’ve returned earlier but suffered a setback in his recovery from a shoulder injury. Brock Lesnar and Junior dos Santos square off in June with the winner expected to battle Velasquez in the fall for the UFC heavyweight title.

- White is confident that the UFC 129 setup is better than the recent mega-fights featuring Manny Pacquiao at Cowboys Stadium. He also said the promotion is considering opening more seats to add to the current 55,000 seat configuration (1:07:30 mark).

Some presser info courtesy of Yahoo!’s Kevin Iole and MMAjunkie’s John Morgan.

You can watch UFC 129 on PPV (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) right here on Yahoo! Sports.

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Swedish File Sharers Get Religious About Stealing

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

Missionary Church of Kopimism

Swedish philosophy student Isaac Gerson thinks that file sharing is sacred. The 19-year-old leader of the Missionary Church of Kopimism believes that stealing and sharing are signs of appreciation, and has compared closed-source software to slavery. Last year, Sweden rejected the church’s application to be recognized as a religion, but Gerson isn’t giving up so easily. He’ll be reapplying after meeting with government officials.

Swedish File Sharers Get Religious About Stealing originally appeared on Switched on Mon, 11 Apr 2011 17:15:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Source: http://www.switched.com/2011/04/11/missionary-church-kopimism-takes-file-sharing-religious/

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Futuristic Pod Carriage Would Make a Royal Wedding Worth Checking Out

Saturday, April 30th, 2011

There was a royal wedding today? You don’t say!
I’m not too much for pomp, circumstance, or royalty, but if the princely couple came out in this carriage, I think I might actually care (a little).
Reza Esmaeeli, a London-based designer and architect, sought to throw out the traditional, old-fashioned carriage the royal couple rode in and [...]

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