Category Archives: News

Casey Anthony Not Done Yet

Apparently for all of those people (and there are millions) thinking that Casey Anthony got off way too easy after being accused of killing her own daughter, there’s some comforting news on the horizon. In a rare turn of events, Anthony may have to actually pay for admitting that she lied to authorities and not in further jail time, either, but in cold hard cash.

Tim Miller is even angrier than most over the outcome of the Anthony case, which saw her ultimately evade all responsibility over the death of her daughter Caylee. Miller is not a family member, or even a prosecutor, but the founder of Equusearch, the company that was charged with finding the minor alive.

Miller claims that Anthony knew her daughter was dead the entire time that his company spent upwards of $100,000 trying to find her. He reasonably believes that she lied to him in the summer of 2008 when he personally visited her house to assure her that her daughter would be found, just like she lied to federal investigators (the only crime she was actually convicted of).

The Equusearch owner isn’t just seeking the money that his company lost, however. Instead he’s also after the peace of mind lost by the families that he feels his company could have been helping instead of searching for a child he claims Casey Anthony already knew was dead. But before you think this seems far-fetched, its been reported that Anthony has been offered up to and over $1 million to appear on The Jerry Springer Show, among others. So if she’s going to be dealt that kind of money simply to face the nation, I think it only seems reasonable that Miller get his money back (though I truly hope the money does end up in the hands of the families whose loved ones were lost while time was wasted looking for the already-deceased Caylee Anthony).

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Accused Pedophile Allowed to watch Pornography in Jail

Troubling news recently broke for people who think that the laws are a little too lenient for pedophiles. Through an absolute terrible loophole in the law, a man accused of child molestation and of pedaling child pornography is actually being allowed to view his own child pornography tapes while in a Tacoma, Washington, Prison.

The accused, Weldon Marc Gilbert, is now free to watch his collection of over 200 child pornography videos from the jail in which he is imprisoned. The loophole allows to the man to watch as many hours of the video as he needs to because he is acting as his own attorney. Under the law, because Gilbert is representing himself, he must be allowed to view the evidence pertaining to his defense. In this twisted case, this evidence is actually the child pornography found in his home that he (allegedly) produced.

Gilbert is not only charged with pedaling child pornography but the former pilot is also accused of luring children with alcohol and other bribes into his Washington home to abuse them physically and mentally. And while he can not watch the videos alone, and an investigator is with him at all times in a room monitored by jail guards, I can’t imagine that Gilbert is really getting any work done at all, but indulging himself in his sick fantasies.

This is simply another instance in which a sick, sad man is taking advantage of the American legal system for his own benefit. If there’s any consolation in this story, it’s that Gilbert will likely be too enthralled with his past disturbing actions to prepare an adequate defense, and that his victims will get swift justice. Enjoy your loophole for now Gilbert, because if there’s any justice in the world you’ll soon be getting what’s coming to you on the inside of a Washington penitentiary.

Tricky Dick’s Moon Rock Found

Coleman Anderson, best known for his role as one of the first captains to be featured on Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch, is creating news in Seattle, despite now residing all the way in Corpus Christi, Texas. Anderson, who was also a Seattle businessman, is being accused by the state of Alaska of theft, but that’s not even the unique part of the story.

The real tale dates back to over 37 years ago, when investigating the remnants of an arson fire that tore through the Alaska Transportation Museum in Anchorage in 1973, Anderson came across a plaque that he claims was garbage. Instead, the plaque was actually the remains of a moon rock, presented to the state of Alaska by then-President Richard Nixon after the safe return of the Apollo 11 trip back from the moon in 1969.

Anderson, maintaining the plaque was left out to be tossed into a landfill, took it for his own, and only recently acknowledged that he had possession of the rock (one of only 230 in the world) in a lawsuit against the state of Alaska that he’s filed in an attempt to keep what he’s been in possession of for 37 years. Though it seems pretty mundane, the fact is that people are offering up to $5 million for such moon rocks on the black market, so the offense of stealing one can be pretty serious.

The 55-year old Anderson is claiming that at the very least he needs to be reimbursed for the time, effort and personal finance that he’s put into restoring the plaque itself. And while it hasn’t been verified, the plaque is said by former NASA investigator Joe Gutheinz to be the real deal. The bad news for Anderson, though, is that the state of Alaska, led by Gutheinz, who’s now an attorney in Houston, has filed a counterclaim not only asking for the return of the moon rock, but also damages for Anderson’s holding of the rock for so long.

Anderson’s attorney, the Seattle-based Daniel Harris, isn’t about to give up without a fight, though, claiming that the state of Alaska never so much as filed a report on the missing rock. The case may take quite awhile to come to a resolution, but in the meantime Anderson should relish holding on to the rock for as long as he can. Not only will a loss mean he must give up the rock, but having to pay damages for taking it would just add insult to injury. Best of luck Coleman, you’ve got quite the battle in front of you.

51 States?

Though it’s certainly not the first time that someone has suggested secession, the latest proposal, coming from Riverside (Ca.) County Supervisor Jeff Stone, could be the most ridiculous. Stone is now suggesting that 13 counties secede from the state of California and form the state of…South California. Okay, so while the name may not be too impressive, the idea is actually carrying some weight with local residents.

Stone’s proposal is aimed directly at democratic lawmakers, whose “liberal agenda,” as he calls it, is ruining the state government by overfunding the wrong programs, resulting in tax hikes and corporations leaving the state. One such example, Stone explains, came when bans on plastic bags spread to Los Angeles, effectively eliminating jobs when three companies were forced to close as a direct result. This illustrates why Stone has left Los Angeles off his list, but he went on to explain it further.

“The last thing I want to do is create a state that’s a carbon copy of what we have now,” Stone said when defending his decision to not include Los Angeles. Stone went on to state that to emulate the democratic legislature in Sacramento, or create another version of the same California that he is apparently fed up with is unacceptable and not the point of this proposal at all.

So what do those serving in real government positions think about Stone’s plan? Well, that its not only far-fetched, but ultimately stupid.

“It’s a supremely ridiculous waste of everybody’s time,” Gil Duran, a spokesperson for California’s current Democratic governor Jerry Brown, said, adding to the consensus that seems to be following this push for statehood.

Still, with California being one of the many states not meeting their state budgets, the scariest part of this whole suggestion may just be that somehow it could eventually gain momentum with voters.

Netflix Changes

This morning while checking my Facebook feed I saw that my older brother was very unhappy with Netflix. I figured it would be one of two things… Either “Justin Bieber: Never Say Never” still wasn’t available for rental or his subscription fee increased. Turns out it was the latter of the two.

Like many other people my brother has the unlimited DVD rental-unlimited streaming combo subscription. A plan which had an incredibly attractive price of just $9.99. That price is now gone, and a new pricing scheme has been released from the company.

The cheapest plan available was and still is $4.99 per month. That subscription allows two DVD rentals monthly. Unlimited DVDs is now an option (one at a time) for $7.99 which is the same price as unlimited streaming. So, add those two together and you get $15.98 for the unlimited plan. See why big brother is so angry? That’s a 37.5% increase for nothing being added to his plan.

Will this change hurt Netflix? Probably not… The stock is up today, they still have the best selection of available DVD rentals, and the new price isn’t absurdly high. Streaming all those movies to their millions of subscribers is quite the cost and licensing fees increase as more and more people join their service. It was only a matter of time before such a change occurred.

Hopefully my brother doesn’t cancel his plan… I’ve been mooching off that for over a year now and the streaming service is clutch for my lazy Sunday’s.

New List Highlights Most Hyped Cities

For all those who have ever said jokingly that the “South will rise again,” a new list put out by Forbes Magazine may prove that to be the truth.

The good folks at Forbes, known for their in-depth analysis of not just how to make money, but where it’s easiest to find the opportunity to make, have put out a new list that projects what cities might become this generation’s “boom-towns.” Not so surprisingly, many of the largest cities (including those in the Northeast) didn’t make the cut. But what’s alarming to some, and comforting to others, is that the list is dominated by Southern cities. In fact, of the top ten listings, only one isn’t found in the traditional boundaries of the American South. But even this one, Phoenix, Arizona, is not Northern by any means.

The judging this year was based on many categories that cities in the American South are known for. For example, low cost of living, including great pricing on larger homes and land, lead the way for many economists. But other factors, such as the influx in immigration to cities like Austin, Texas and Raleigh, North Carolina (numbers 1 and 2 on the list) reflect the spread of culture not widely associated with the Southland.

More surprisingly still, is that cities like Nashville (No. 3), Houston (No. 4) and San Antonio (No. 5) are not only experiencing cultural infusions but creative ones as well as many educated professionals, including everything from artists to professors, are finding better pay and opportunities in these cities. They are venturing out from traditional hotspots like San Francisco (which fell into the low 40’s) and New York (dropping to 35) and claiming their places early. Even a city as culturally diverse as Los Angeles fell extremely far, to number 47 in the latest rankings, because of the largest decrease in children’s population in the country, as well as the tightening of government regulations on businesses.

Don’t be too concerned, though, if you’re not ready to buy into the whole Nashville as a powerful metropolis in the next coming years. Don’t think, either, that you can’t make a name for yourself in a town like Chicago (tied with Los Angeles for 47th overall). But do keep in mind where the economic flow seems to be spreading so that when people emerge from the South rich and educated, you’re not so shocked.

Visit Washington! (But You Didn’t Hear It From Them)

Have you ever wanted to visit the state of Washington? Perhaps you wanted to catch a Mariners game, or drive on out to Mount Rainer. Maybe you even wanted to cruise on up to Puget Sound, or enjoy one of the numerous state parks that are scattered all across the Washington frontier. These all seem like great choices for a vacation destinations, until you realize that after today you’ll be planning any of these vacations by yourself.

That’s right, to rectify the current state budget crisis, the Washington state government has one-upped states like New York that have cut the funding for promoting tourism by completely doing away with all funding. The state’s current tourism expenses have dropped from over $7 million to only $2 million in recent years, which may not seem like much until you realize what else would have been cut instead.

I applaud the effort here because it means that instead of tuition hikes and health-care cuts, the state’s actually risking money out of its own pocket to keep its current residents happy. In fact, tourism accounts for $15.2 billion of the state’s annual revenue, it’s fourth largest market. This means that the risk is pretty steep, but the reality is that this keeps money in the pockets of Washington’s residents for even longer, which is quite a feat in today’s economy. Hopefully our national government, and even our own home states will also take a long hard look at the sacrifices that the government of Washington appears to be making here just to keep a little bit of money in the pockets of its residents.

Don’t worry, though, the state has set up a program so that its tourism website will still be functional, and popular recreational facilities will be staffed. But don’t expect to see any commercials advertising for you to come visit anytime soon.