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Hollywood: Break the Movie Industry

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Dr. K: Sony Made the Wrong Decision to Pull ‘The Interview’

On Thursday’s Special Report, Charles Krauthammer said Sony Pictures made a bad choice to scrap the release of The Interview.

 “I think this is not sort of rocket science, Sony made exactly the wrong decision. What you do is…you put it out on the Internet for free. So it’s a gesture, but also it doubly screws over Pyongyang.”

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Watch ABC for Apple TV updated with the ability to watch most recent episodes for all users

Originally posted on 9to5Mac:

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ABC issued an update to its Watch ABC channel on the Apple TV today. The channel now allows all users to watch the latest episodes of their favorite shows, without the need to login through a cable provider, as was previously required.

Of course, you won’t be able to jump in and start watching the newest episode the day after it airs. As was the case with the previous version of the channel, episodes are only made available one week after they’ve aired.

The update also introduces a new continuous play mode similar to the one found on the Netflix channel, and a new design that puts the latest episodes of popular shows front-and-center. The full press release detailing the changes is included below.

You should start seeing the updated Watch ABC channel on your Apple TV once it downloads and applies the automatic update over the air.

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Police bust pair accused of dealing marijuana from front door to all ages

Originally posted on Q13 FOX News:

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VANCOUVER, Wash. (KPTV) — Two people in a Vancouver home were dealing marijuana through a slot in the front door to anyone who inquired, regardless of age, according to police.

Over the past several weeks, Vancouver detectives have been conducting an investigation into the suspected manufacturing and distribution of marijuana from a home at 13326 N.E. 39th St.

Detectives said they observed multiple teenagers approach the home, go to the front door and then leave shortly thereafter.

Undercover officers were also able to purchase pot at the home on two occasions as part of the investigation, according to police.

Neighbors said they knew what was going on at the house.

“Everyone knows what the neighbors had; you could smell it,” neighbor Tim Chadwick said. “I’ve had quite a few kids come here knocking on the door asking and then we say, ‘You’ve got the wrong house.'”

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Neighbors said…

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‘Did you tingle?’ Chris Matthews feels that old thrill at WH Christmas party [photo]; Update: Tweet deleted

Originally posted on Twitchy:

Tingles all the way!

https://twitter.com/hardball_chris/status/545687037341622272

(Hey, where’d it go? See our update below.)

Isn’t that precious?

It always does.

Time for a Chris-mas carol rewrite:

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[VIDEO] NASA Satellite Sees Holiday Lights Shine Bright from Space

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[VIDEO] Tokyo Christmas Lights


Illuminated Choirbook: 1436 Consecration of Florence’s Santa Maria del Fiore

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The New Criterion


BREAKING: Paramount Bans Showing ‘Team America’

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Three movie theaters say Paramount Pictures has ordered them not to show Team America: World Police one day after Sony Pictures surrendered to cyberterrorists and pulled The Interview. The famous Alamo Drafthouse in Texas, Capitol Theater in Cleveland, and Plaza Atlanta in Atlanta said they would screen the movie instead of The Interview but Paramount has ordered them to stop. (No reason was apparently given and Paramount hasn’t spoken.) Team America of course features Kim’s father, Kim Jong-Il, as a singing marionette.

In 2004, North Korea demanded Team America be banned in the Czech Republic….(read more)

The Daily Beast


[PHOTO] Miles Davis

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Rock Star: Rolling Stone Cover Boy Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Appears in Federal Court Today

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Dzhokhar  appeared in court under heavy security Thursday ahead of his trial next month for the bombing of the Boston Marathon, telling the judge he was satisfied with his lawyers.

Tsarnaev, wearing gray pants, a black sweater-vest and a tie, was led in handcuffs into a federal courthouse in Boston for a pretrial hearing. It was his first appearance since July 2013.

Tsarnaev

Asked by the judge whether he had been kept up to speed on the court proceedings, Tsarnaev answered: “Yes, Your Honor.” Asked whether his lawyers were representing him adequately, he said, “They are.” Read the rest of this entry »


New York Post Cover: ‘America Smokes a Cuban’, ‘Kim Jong WON’ Dec 18, 2014

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Dan Henninger’s Cuckoo Bananas Update

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Democrats: the new stupid party of American politics

Dan Henninger writes: A constant of political life has been that there is only one “stupid party” in America—the Republican Party. Then one day you get out of bed, look out the window and what do you see? Democrats. The Democrats are turning themselves into the new stupid party of American politics.

In the liberal pundits’ telling, Republicans are the party of the yahoo heartland, the anti-abortion religious right and the anti-government tea party. The stupid party.

“Sen. Warren’s fiery ‘middle-class’ speeches are normal politics. But the activist left’s political compulsions are producing a lot of stuff that isn’t close to normal. It is craziness at the political margins, and like weeds, it is occupying the party’s public personality.”

Of course this is a caricature. Besides, none of this bad-mouthing matters unless too many average voters conclude that a weird political fringe now represents the party’s core.

Which brings us to the Draft Elizabeth Warren movement.

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“Many traditional liberals still consider themselves JFK or Clinton Democrats. But that party is gone. The party’s presumptive nominee, Hillary Clinton, is going to be transformed into a Warren Democrat, the party’s future.”

Last week more than 300 former Obama staffers signed an open letter urging the famous Harvard Law School professor to run in 2016. Days earlier, two big progressive groups, MoveOn.org and Democracy for America, also pressed the first-term Massachusetts senator to seek the party’s presidential nomination.

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“The implicit logic of the Draft Warren movement is that after eight years of the Obama presidency, the American people want to move . . . further left.”

However intriguing that proposition, the real problem for the political pros behind Draft Warren or even the Ready for Hillary super PAC is that the Democratic left’s high-publicity wing insists on doing stupid things in public that turn off more voters than they turn on.

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The most publicized media story of recent times is the discredited Rolling Stone article about an alleged fraternity gang rape at the University of Virginia. For the media itself, the big story here was the magazine’s poor journalistic practices. But most people don’t care about that. What they saw until the story began to unravel was due process turned upside down—the fraternity judged guilty until proven innocent. Read the rest of this entry »


Bells Ring in Havana, Anger Erupts in Miami

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Havana (CNN) — Church bells rang out Wednesday afternoon in Havana, marking a major moment in history — Cuba and the United States are renewing diplomatic relations after decades of ice-cold tension.

Word of the massive change was met with passionate opinions and some protests in the United States. And tearful celebrations erupted in the streets of the island after President Raul Castro announced the news in a televised address.

“With the main obstacle for the re-establishment of diplomatic relations eliminated, the only unknown is the next step. Is the Cuban government planning another move to return to a position of force vis-a-vis the U.S. government? Or are all the cards on the table this time, before the weary eyes of a population that anticipates that the Castro regime will also win the next move.”

– Yoani Sanchez, a well-known Cuban blogger

But there was uncertainty and some anger amid the joy.

Dissident Cuban blogger Yusnaby Perez tweeted that his neighbor asked him whether a change in U.S.-Cuban trade relations would mean that he could finally afford to buy meat.

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Other dissidents worried that their concerns will now be overlooked.

Yoani Sanchez, a well-known Cuban blogger, decried what she described as a carefully plotted victory for the Castro regime in the swap of detained U.S. contractor Alan Gross for Cuban spies imprisoned in America. Read the rest of this entry »


Rich Lowry: ‘Even if you oppose the isolation of Cuba, this is not a good trade’

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Rich Lowry writes: …His surprise unilateral change in the U.S. posture toward the Castro dictatorship came without even the pretense of serious promises by the Cubans to reform their kleptocratic, totalitarian rule.

The trade of Alan Gross, the American aid worker jailed in Cuba for the offense of trying to help Jewish Cubans get on the Internet, for three Cuban spies is understandable (we also got back one of our spies, and Cuba released several dozen political prisoners as a sweetener).

“If tourism were the key to empowering and eventually liberating the Cuban people, the country would be a robust democracy by now. About a million Canadian tourists go to Cuba every year. In total, more than 2 million tourists visit annually, and yet the Castro regime is still standing.”

The rest of Obama’s sweeping revisions — diplomatic relations and the loosening of every economic sanction he can plausibly change on his own — are freely granted, no questions asked. It is quid with no pro quo. Even if you oppose the isolation of Cuba, this is not a good trade.

After waiting out 10 other U.S. presidents, the Castro regime finally hit the jackpot in Obama, whose beliefs about our Cuba policy probably don’t differ much from those of the average black-turtleneck-clad graduate student in Latin American studies.

“The Cuba embargo is condemned as a relic of the Cold War. But the root of the matter is the Cuban regime that is itself a relic, an inhuman jackboot left over from the era when people actually professed to believe in workers’ paradises.”

Every dictator around the world must be waiting anxiously for a call or a postcard from Obama. The leader of the free world comes bearing gifts and understanding. He is willing to overlook human-rights abuses. And his idea of burnishing his legacy is to clinch deals with his country’s enemies. Read the rest of this entry »


Bureau 121: Defector Says North Korea is Running a Vast Hacker Network

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SEOUL, South Korea — A defector who once worked as a computer expert for Pyongyang says North Korea is running a vast network of hackers committing cyber warfare against the perceived enemies of the Stalinist state.

“Raising cyber agents is fairly cheap. The world has the wrong view of the North Korean state. With that incorrect world view, North Korea was able to increase its ability to launch cyberattacks.”

Jang Se-yul, who defected from North Korea seven years ago, told CNN that he thinks there are 1,800 cyber warriors in the agency in place around the world, but he says even the agents themselves don’t know how many operatives work for the secretive group, labeled Bureau 121.

The South Korean government thinks Bureau 121 is the agency at the heart of the cyberattacks that North Korea conducts against foreign countries, a government official who requested to be anonymous told CNN on Thursday.

“This silent war, the cyber war, has already begun without a single bullet fired.”

An unknown number of agents and operatives work with Bureau 121, the official said, adding that South Korean intelligence thinks the group is responsible for the “Dark Seoul” hacks on South Korean banks and media companies in March and June 2013. Read the rest of this entry »


Brave Clerk Fights Off Armed Robber with Unregulated Full-Metal Napkin Dispenser

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Washington State Legislature to Introduce Metal Napkin Dispenser Control Act to Establish Guidelines for Napkin Dispenser Background Checks, Regulate Production and Ownership of Defensive Full-Metal Napkin Dispensers

BURLINGTON, Wash. — Cops are on the hunt for a serial armed robber and police say his last target was a clerk inside the Lafeen’s Donut shop on November 30.

But thanks to a brave store clerk police now have a clear view of the suspect’s face.crime-fighter

Investigators think the same man is responsible for robberies stretching from Burlington to Bellingham.

“It just makes me mad,” said clerk Sara Mora, “It makes me angry.”

Mora was working in the back of the store when she heard a customer walk in.

But when she saw a man guy holding a gun, she did exactly as she was told.

“Right when he flashes his gun I’m like, whoa,” she said. “This is the end of me, my life ends right here.”

The thief made Sara empty the register. But when the suspect turned to cut the phone lines, Sara made her move and armed herself with a metal napkin dispenser.

During the struggle Sara pulled down the suspect’s hood. Investigators said the image of the man captured on video is their best chance to identify the suspect.

“It gives us a very description of who we’re looking for,” said Officer Jed Cates of the Burlington Police Department. “He’s obviously shown that he’s willing to do it, this has occurred 4 times in Bellingham.”

Investigators believe the suspect is responsible for other armed robberies in Bellingham; several were also captured on surveillance video. Read the rest of this entry »


Americans send $2 billion a year to Cuba

Originally posted on Q13 FOX News:

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — Trade with Cuba has been blocked for decades, but nearly $2 billion was sent to Cubans last year from within the United States.

Most of it came from Cuban-Americans sending money home to their families. But now, anyone in the U.S. can send up to $8,000 a year to just about anybody in Cuba, as the Obama Administration eases restrictions with the Communist country.

“You can really see the impact this money is having on the island,” said Alana Tummino, director at the Americas Society and Council of the Americas.

[van id=”world/2014/12/17/nr-intv-smith-cuba-relations.cnn”]

The money is often going to small, private businesses.

Yes, even though Cuba is a Communist country, it has moved towards a more private economy in recent years.

There are now close to 500,000 people with state-issued private business licenses for everything from restaurants, to nail salons, to coffee shops and mechanics, Tummino said.

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If ‘The Interview’ were a prestige pic, how would this have gone?

Originally posted on Inside Movies:

[ew_image url=”http://img2.timeinc.net/ew/i/2014/12/17/the-interview-james-franco_612x380.jpg” credit=”Ed Araquel” align=”left”]

No one is arguing that The Interview is a great film—or, having talked to some people who have seen it, even a good film. But over the past few weeks, it has stumbled into being a capital-I Important Film in spite of itself—one people should have the option to see in a theater, on its usual release day, like any other film that isn’t causing an international incident.

But how would the conversation around The Interview have been different if Seth Rogen and James Franco’s movie were a prestige pic? If it were more like Hotel Rwanda or The Killing Fields and less like Pineapple Express or This is the End? If it were the equivalent of eating your cultural vegetables and not taking down a bacon cheeseburger with fries, would Sony and theater chains have defended it more?

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Apple looking for London-based ‘Apple Pay Intern’ to help expand service into Europe

Originally posted on 9to5Mac:

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A new UK job listing posted on Apple’s website and uncovered by iClarified indicates that the company is planning to expands its payment service into Europe and elsewhere. It shouldn’t come as a big surprise that Apple wants to put its iPhone 6-based payment system into as many hands worldwide as possible, but this is one of the first indications of a move in that direction.

The intern will be part of a new London-based team that will help roll the product out across Europe, the Middle East, India, and Asia. Specifically the intern will be responsible for handling contracts and non-disclosure agreements between Apple and third-parties like banks and retailers.

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