Tom Danehy: Tom wonders where the "give 'em hell" version of President Obama has been the last six years (Tucson Weekly)
With all due respect, Mr. President, where the hell have you been for the past six years? And why did you wait this long to shrug off your too-cool persona and stand up for something? I would say that it's about damn time, but it's probably way past damn time. For six excruciating years, we've watched as the Republicans stalled, bluffed, lied, and shirked their responsibility in a desperate bid to make sure that you didn't succeed. Their only agenda was to derail your agenda.
Diana Moskovitz: The Former Basketball Player Who Brought Down Bill Cosby (Deadspin)
Without Andrea Constand, none of this happens. Bill Cosby is still America's No. 1 dad, still beloved for giving us the Huxtables and Fat Albert, still embraced in too many corners of the country for telling young black men to pull up their pants, still selling out arena after arena.
Delia Paunescu: Bill Cosby's massive social media fail (NY Post)
#CosbyMeme quickly devolved into a conversation about rape and rape culture, never quite achieving the cute, wholesome captions Cosby's marketers were likely expecting with that tip-of-the-hat photo.
Colin Boyd: Beating the Drum (Tucson Weekly)
Let's just go ahead and give J.K. Simmons the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in "Whiplash" already.
Andrew Horton: Les Blank's Cinéma Vitalité (Criterion Collection)
What do Cajun and Creole musicians, roasted garlic, New Orleans jazz funerals, gap-toothed women, polka dancing, and Lightnin' Hopkins singing the blues have to do with one another? The answer is simple: they are all subjects of some of the forty documentaries made by Les Blank (1935-2013), a true auteur in every sense, who spent his life capturing intimate and idiosyncratic pictures of passionate individuals and cultures on the peripheries of, mainly American, society. In fact, these beautifully personal films take us beyond what it is to be "American" to a more universal vision of being human.
Christopher Bonanos: "The Strand's Stand: How It Keeps Going in the Age of Amazon" (Vulture)
Why is there still a Strand Book Store?
CLASSIC AUTHORS' AMERICAN HOUSES ON GOOGLE (Shortlist)
You can go and stand slightly awkwardly outside the homes of the author of In Cold Blood, the man who made Moby Dick, the twisted soul who birthed Cthulhu and visit the road of the man who wrote On The Road. Or you could just look at them all on Google Maps and have the whole lot covered in about twenty minutes. Totally your call.
Honest Trailers - Love Actually (YouTube)
David Bruce's Amazon Author Page
David Bruce's Smashwords Page
David Bruce's Blog
David Bruce's Lulu Storefront
David Bruce's Apple iBookstore
David Bruce has approximately 50 Kindle books on Amazon.com.
Michelle in AZ
From The Creator of 'Avery Ant'
from Marc Perkel
Hello Bartcop fans,
As you all know the untimely passing of Terry was unexpected, even by him. We all knew he had cancer but we all thought he had some years left. So some of us who have worked closely with him over the years are scrambling around trying to figure out what to do. My job, among other things, is to establish communications with the Bartcop community and provide email lists and groups for those who might put something together. Those who want to play an active roll in something coming from this, or if you are one of Bart's pillars, should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bart's final wish was to pay off the house mortgage for Mrs. Bart who is overwhelmed and so very grateful for the support she has received. Anyone wanting to make a donation can click on this the yellow donate button on bartcop.com
But - I need you all to help keep this going. This note isn't going to directly reach all of Bart's fans. So if you can repost it on blogs and discussion boards so people can sign up then when we figure out what's next we can let more people know. This list is just over 600 but like to get it up to at least 10,000 pretty quick. So here's the signup link for this email list.
( mailman.bartcop.com/listinfo/bartnews )
from that Mad Cat, JD
In The Chaos Household
Sunny and about 20° warmer than seasonal.
Original Manuscript Visiting New York, Philadelphia
'Alice in Wonderland'
Lewis Carroll's original handwritten, illustrated manuscript for "Alice in Wonderland" will travel to the U.S. to mark its 150th anniversary.
The British Library said Thursday it will loan the book - presented by the author to Alice Liddell, who inspired it - to New York's Morgan Library and Museum and the Rosenbach Museum of the Free Library of Philadelphia next year.
The work, which bears its original title of "Alice's Adventures Under Ground," was bought by an American dealer in 1928 and returned to Britain in 1948.
The British Library also will display the book in late 2015 as part of an exhibition marking 150 years since its 1865 publication.
'Alice in Wonderland'
Auctioning Personal Items
If you've always wanted to have a pair of leather chaps owned by actor Burt Reynolds, you could soon be in luck.
Hundreds of personal items belonging to the Deliverance star will be auctioned off at The Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas next month. Julien's Live auction house is running the event.
The auction's catalog, entitled Property From the Life and Career of Burt Reynolds, lists over 600 items, including such movie memorabilia as a jacket and shirt he wore in Smokey and the Bandit II, a football helmet from The Longest Yard and even a pair of monogrammed boots from 1996's Striptease, for all those diehard Striptease fans out there.
Also on the block: several vehicles, a wide selection of artwork and sports collectibles and even a number of awards, including his 1991 best actor in a comedy Emmy for Evening Shade and 1998 best supporting actor Golden Globe for Boogie Nights.
A trove of ancient bones from gigantic animals discovered in the Colorado mountains is providing scientists with a fascinating look at what happened about 120,000 years ago when the Earth got as warm as it is today.
Evidence left behind by mastodons, mammoths, giant sloths and huge bison - along with insects, plants, pollen and other animals - offers a glimpse at how ancient animal adapted to climate change.
Among their findings: The warmer weather allowed forests to reach about 2,500 feet farther up the mountainside than today's tree line, which is about 11,500 feet above sea level at the Snowmass site. Forests also may have been denser, and smaller trees and grasslands might have been more widespread amid drier conditions.
A team of 47 scientists has been studying material unearthed four years ago near Snowmass, a town just outside Aspen, when a bulldozer was enlarging a reservoir. The researchers published their first big batch of data in the journal Quaternary Research in November.
Future in Question
'Red Band Society'
The writing has been on the wall for some time, but Red Band Society is about to make an exit from Fox's schedule. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that the low-rated hospital drama will not move past its initial order of 13 episodes - at least this season.
Not yet considered a cancelation, network brass are said to remain open to the possibility of a sophomore run. Sources say that Fox expressed interest in more episodes of Red Band Society for this season - it had a young and steady (if small) audience - but producer ABC Studios could not accommodate the network's request for a reduced license fee.
And Red Band Society has ultimately failed to make much of an impression on Wednesday nights. Even with DVR, its latest season average is just a 1.8 rating with adults 18-49 and 5.1 million viewers. The series maintained its slot on the schedule these last two months, thanks in large part to a lack of anything to pull from the bench, but its complete absence from the recently announced midseason schedule was more than conspicuous.
Fox's decision to pull the plug - sorry! - on the current run does not mean that it's out of the picture completely. The end of production comes at the conclusion of the first 13 episodes, nine of which will have aired as of Wednesday night. After the tenth debuts in December, the remaining three will be shelved to air at a later date. Its time slot goes to big swing Empire in January.
'Red Band Society'
Investigators Stole Rare Comic Books
Two Houston-area investigators are accused of stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars in rare comic books while working an embezzlement case.
A Harris County grand jury on Tuesday indicted Dustin Deutsch, 41, with felony theft by a public servant and tampering with evidence, the Houston Chronicle reported. Deutsch and his former partner at the Harris County District Attorney's Office, 39-year-old Lonnie Blevins, are accused of stealing the comics from a storage unit in 2012.
Both men were assigned to investigate attorney Anthony Chiofalo, who stole about $9 million from a crane-manufacturing company. He was sentenced to 40 years in May after pleading guilty to first-degree felony theft of more than $200,000.
Chiofalo bought hundreds of collectibles with the stolen money, including a first-edition Batman comic valued around $900,000 and a baseball helmet signed by former Cincinnati Reds player Pete Rose. The company, discovering the missing funds, alerted authorities.
The FBI said Deutsch had keys to a storage unit that held the vintage comics, and that Deutsch gave the rarities to Blevins, who sold them in Chicago.
A campaign finance investigation is moving forward against an Alaska television reporter who quit her job on-air and vowed to work toward legalizing marijuana.
The Alaska Public Offices Commission wants to know whether Charlo Greene used crowdsourcing funds to advocate for a ballot initiative to legalize recreational pot use. Greene challenged the commission's request for documents.
Alaska Dispatch News reports the commission on Wednesday rejected her objection to a subpoena. That gives the agency the authority to continue the investigation to determine whether money that was spent would trigger reporting requirements.
Greene's legal name is Charlene Egbe. During a live newscast, she revealed herself to be the owner of a medical marijuana business.
Had Accuser's Story Spiked
Bill Cosby testified under oath in 2005 that he gave the National Enquirer an exclusive interview about looming sexual-assault accusations by a Canadian woman against him in exchange for the tabloid spiking a second accuser's story.
Excerpts released Wednesday of Cosby's deposition from a civil lawsuit filed by Andrea Constand quote Cosby as saying he feared the public would believe her sexual-assault accusations if the Enquirer published similar claims by Beth Ferrier. Both women accused Cosby of drugging and molesting them.
"Did you ever think that if Beth Ferrier's story was printed in the National Enquirer, that that would make the public believe that maybe Andrea was also telling the truth?" Cosby was asked.
"Exactly," Cosby replied, according to court motions initially filed under seal and made available from archived federal court records.
"I would give them an exclusive story, my words," Cosby said in the Sept. 29, 2005, deposition. In return, "they would not print the story of - print Beth's story."
Bern Art Museum
A Swiss museum published a list on Thursday of all the art found in the possession of Cornelius Gurlitt, a German recluse whose secret collection included masterpieces looted from their Jewish owners by the Nazis.
The Bern Art Museum was named as sole heir to the collection and on Monday reluctantly accepted the bequest, making clear that it would adopt a policy of total transparency to head off any criticism over its decision to take in the artwork.
Gurlitt's collection of over 1,200 artworks had been hidden away for decades until German tax inspectors stumbled upon it during a raid on his Munich apartment in 2012. A government task force identified three pieces that were indisputably looted by the Nazis which would be returned to the heirs.
Bern Art Museum has said it will not accept any piece which experts believed might have been stolen and by publishing the full list it hopes it might still discover the rightful owners.
The 196-page list published on the museum website catalogues all the works that were found in Gurlitt's flat in Munich and at his house in Salzburg. Among the notable pieces are Henri Matisse's Seated Woman from circa 1924, oriental drawings from Eugene Delacroix and a landscape from Gustave Courbet.
Bern Art Museum
Amnesty Pond For Unwanted Pet Fish
Federal park officials in San Francisco are building an "amnesty pond" for unwanted pet fish - to help keep a beautiful lake free of nonnative fish.
Mountain Lake, on the southern border of the Presidio park, was recently poisoned to kill off invasive species, claiming catfish, bass and more than 850 carp, SFGate reported.
But the Presidio Trust does not want another purge to kill so many fish again, so the group thought of a way to prevent them from showing up in Mountain Lake in the first place.
The problem arose because pet owners had been releasing their unwanted fish in the lake's waters.
That's why the Presidio Trust is building an amnesty pond near the lake to give fish dumpers another option, according to SFGate.
P.D. James took the classic British detective story into tough modern terrain, complete with troubled relationships and brutal violence, and never accepted that crime writing was second-class literature.
James, who has died aged 94, is best known as the creator of sensitive Scotland Yard sleuth Adam Dalgliesh. But her wickedly acute imagination ranged widely, inserting a murder into the mannered world of Jane Austen in "Death Comes to Pemberley" and creating a bleak dystopian future in "The Children of Men."
James told the Associated Press in 2006 that she was drawn to mystery novels because they "tell us more ... about the social mores about the time in which they were written than the more prestigious literature."
Because of the quality and careful structure of her writing - and her elegant, intellectual detective Dalgliesh - she was at first seen as a natural successor to writers like Dorothy L. Sayers, creator of Lord Peter Wimsey, in the between-the-wars "Golden Age" of the mystery novel.
But James' books were strong on character, avoided stereotype and touched on distinctly modern problems including drugs, child abuse, terrorism and nuclear contamination.
Phyllis Dorothy James was born in Oxford on Aug. 3, 1920. Her father was a tax collector and there was not enough money for her to go to college, a fact she always regretted.
Even as a child, she said, she had been interested in death. As a little girl, when someone read "Humpty Dumpty" to her, she asked, "Did he fall or was he pushed?"
But she did not start producing her mysteries until she was nearly 40, and then wrote only early in the morning before going to the civil service job with which she supported her family. Her husband, Connor Bantry White, had returned from World War II mentally broken and remained so until his death in 1964.
James worked as a filing clerk, hospital administrator and in the forensics and criminal justice departments of Britain's Home Office.
Her first novel, "Cover Her Face," was published in 1962 and was an immediate critical success, but she continued to work as a civil servant until 1979.
In 1980, with the publication of her eighth book, "Innocent Blood," her small but loyal following exploded into mass international popularity.
The Crime Writers' Association gave James its Diamond Dagger award in 1987 for lifetime achievement, and in 2005 the National Arts Club honoured her with its Medal of Honor for Literature.
As well as Dalgliesh, James created the female detective Cordelia Gray, protagonist of "An Unsuitable Job for a Woman" and "The Skull Beneath the Skin."
Queen Elizabeth II made her Baroness James of Holland Park in 1991, in recognition of her work as a governor of the BBC, a position she held from 1988 to 1993.
James represented the Conservative Party in the House of Lords, but in many ways she was anything but conservative.
James is survived by two daughters and several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Frank Yablans, a former president of Paramount Pictures in the 1970s who oversaw the release of several groundbreaking pictures, has died.
Yablans died of natural causes Thursday morning at his home in Los Angeles, his son Eddy Yablans told The Associated Press on Thursday. He was 79.
Yablans was president at Paramount when the studio reeled out such well-known hits as "The Godfather," ''Chinatown," ''Paper Moon" and "Murder on the Orient Express."
He later went on to work as chief operating officer at MGM/United Artists and co-wrote the screenplay for "Mommie Dearest," a biopic about movie star Joan Crawford's deeply troubled relationship with her children. Yablans also produced the film.
Yablans, a native of New York, is survived by his three children, four grandchildren and his longtime companion, Nadia Pandolfo.