Week In Pop Culture With Videos. September 22, 2011 Including News, Tech, Entertainment. This Week In Pop Culture History.

Week Of September 22, 2011 In Pop Culture, News & More.

Compiled By Gary West @ www.mrpopculture.com

In The News –

Strapped to a gurney in Georgia’s death chamber, Troy Davis (Mr. Pop Video) lifted his head and declared one last time that he did not kill police officer Mark MacPhail. Just a few feet away behind a glass window, MacPhail’s son and brother watched in silence. Outside the prison, a crowd of more than 500 demonstrators cried, hugged, prayed and held candles. They represented hundreds of thousands of supporters worldwide who took up the anti-death penalty cause as Davis’ final days ticked away. “I am innocent,” Davis said moments before he was executed Wednesday night.(Sept21) “All I can ask … is that you look deeper into this case so that you really can finally see the truth. I ask my family and friends to continue to fight this fight.”

(Mr. Pop Video) A white supremacist gang member was executed Wednesday (Sept21) evening for the infamous dragging death slaying of a black man. James Byrd Jr., 49, was chained to the back of a pickup truck and pulled whip-like to his death along a bumpy asphalt road in one of the most grisly hate crime murders in recent Texas history. Lawrence Russell Brewer, 44, was asked if he had any final words, to which he replied: “No. I have no final statement.” A single tear hung on the edge of his right eye.

A U.S. man is suing Starbucks Coffee Co after his 5-year-old daughter allegedly found a video camera pointed at the toilet in a bathroom in one of their cafes. William Yockey, of Virginia, is asking for $1 million in the civil suit on four counts, including breach of privacy, his lawyer, Hank Schlosberg, told Reuters on Tuesday. Yockey and his daughter went into a Starbucks in downtown Washington to use the restroom during an April sightseeing trip, he said. After using the unisex toilet, the girl discovered a digital video camera hidden in the U-shaped drain pipe under the sink. The camera was aimed at the toilet and recording, Schlosberg said.

The number of people applying for unemployment benefits fell last week, though the decline isn’t enough to signal improvement in the job market. Weekly applications dropped by 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 423,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The four-week average, a less volatile figure, rose slightly for the fifth straight week to 421,000.

Hewlett-Packard Co.’s decision to fire CEO Leo Apotheker after just 11 months and replace him with former eBay chief Meg Whitman is another dizzying turn of the executive merry-go-round at a company whose leadership issues are straining a sprawling technology empire.

Swapping Apotheker, who has now been ousted from two high-profile CEO jobs in two years, for Whitman is a decision designed to stem investor fury over a series of questionable strategy moves

U.S. Stocks are falling as recession fears and global selling take them to new yearly lows. Shares were on track for their fifth straight day of declines and their worst weekly losses since 2008. Finance ministers from of the world’s leading economies pledged early Friday to take whatever steps are necessary to calm the markets. The statement did little to stem the selling.

Another Republican slug fest – this one in Orlando on Thursday. As usual – Mitt Romney and Rick Perry went at it – with their smug smiles and all.

Vladimir Putin said Saturday he’ll run for Russia’s presidency in 2012, almost certainly ensuring he’ll retake the office he previously held and likely foreshadowing years more of a strongman rule that many in the West have called a retreat from democracy. If Putin wins two presidential terms in a row, he will have been atop the Russian hierarchy for almost a quarter-century.

A six-ton NASA science satellite pierced the atmosphere over the Pacific Ocean and fell back to Earth, the U.S. space agency said on Saturday, but it was not yet known where the remains landed. NASA said its decommissioned Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite, which took an unpredictable course as it tumbled through the upper atmosphere, fell to Earth sometime between 11:23 p.m. EDT on Friday and 1:09 a.m. EDT on Saturday.

UBS chief executive Oswald Gruebel has resigned over a $2.3 billion rogue trading loss, the bank said Saturday. The move ends days of speculation about whether Gruebel could retain his position following the latest scandal to hit Switzerland’s biggest bank.

A millionaire developer who lived in the same central Florida neighborhood as Tiger Woods and other celebrities was convicted Saturday of murdering his wife in their mansion. The six jurors deliberated more than 12 hours over two days before finding Bob Ward guilty of second-degree murder. The two-week trial took place in the same courthouse where the Casey Anthony case was tried this summer. Ward was stoic as the verdict was read. Before the verdict, he hugged his two college-aged daughters as the women wept. He faces up to life in prison when he’s sentenced in November.

Libyan revolutionary authorities say they have discovered a mass grave containing the remains of 1,270 inmates killed by the regime of Moammar Gadhafi in a 1996 prison massacre. The site was found near Tripoli’s Abu Salim prison, where the victims were killed on June 26, 1996, after protesting conditions at the facility.

President Barack Obama is on the road selling his jobs plan — and his re-election hopes — to plugged-in networkers in Silicon Valley and around the country. He was to appear Monday at a town hall-style event hosted by the career-focused social networking site LinkedIn to pitch his nearly $450 billion jobs proposal as he travels through California scooping up campaign cash.

(Mr. Pop Video) Boeing’s long-awaited dream machine became a commercial reality on Sunday when the lightweight plastic-composites 787 Dreamliner was formally delivered to its first Japanese customer. Boeing says the revolutionary carbon fiber design will hand 20 percent fuel savings to airlines struggling to avoid a new recession, and give passengers a more comfortable ride with better cabin air and large electronically dimmable windows. The first $200 million aircraft was handed over to Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways three years behind schedule after persistent delays that cost Boeing billions of dollars.

A new survey shows that the average cost of employer-sponsored health insurance surged this year, snapping a trend toward moderate growth, but experts say increases may slow again in 2012. A study by the Kaiser Family Foundation says annual premiums for family coverage climbed 9 percent compared to 2010, when they rose only 3 percent.

Greece’s international debt inspectors will return to Athens on Thursday after they suspended their review of the country’s finances early this month amid talk of budget shortfalls. European Commission spokesman Amadeu Altafaj Tardio said the decision to go back to Athens “follows recent announcements by the Greek authorities concerning fiscal consolidation measures that constitute an important” development.

President Obama is encouraging students to work hard in their classes, saying the country is counting on them. Obama was scheduled to speak Wednesday afternoon at Washington’s Benjamin Banneker Academic High School. His back-to-school address will be televised live and carried online. In his prepared remarks, Obama urges students to pursue an education after high school and says that in tough economic times, the country needs their ideas and passion. “Whether we fall behind or race ahead in the coming years is up to you,” he says.

A man was arrested Wednesday (Sept 28) and accused of plotting an assault on the Pentagon and U.S. Capitol using remote-controlled aircraft armed with explosives — the latest of several terrorism cases to spring from federal sting operations. Rezwan Ferdaus was arrested in Framingham, Massachusetts, after undercover federal agents delivered materials he had allegedly requested, including grenades, six machine guns and what he believed was 24 pounds of C-4 explosive. Federal officials said the public was never in danger from the explosives, which it said were always under control and closely monitored.

In a significant new blow to al-Qaida, U.S. airstrikes in Yemen on Friday(Sept 30) killed Anwar al-Awlaki, an American militant cleric who became a prominent figure in the terror network’s most dangerous branch, using his fluent English and Internet savvy to draw recruits for attacks in the United States. The strike was the biggest U.S. success in hitting al-Qaida’s leadership since the May killing of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan. But it raises questions that other strikes did not: Al-Awlaki was an American citizen who has not been charged with any crime. Civil liberties groups have questioned the government’s authority to kill an American without trial.

Federal agents on Thursday raided a Boeing plant that makes military helicopters in a Philadelphia suburb and charged more than three dozen people with distributing or trying to get prescription drugs, among them powerful painkillers. The arrests were made by the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration at the 5,400-employee plant in Ridley Park, where workers build aircraft including the H-47 Chinook helicopter and the V-22 Osprey. The plant is part of Boeing’s Defense, Space and Security unit.

Tech News –

(video www.mrpopculture.com/Facebook) Facebook f8 – as founder Mark Zuckerberg rolled out new features including a personal timeline. In his keynote speech at f8, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg unveiled new ways for users to share information — and for content creators to gather fresh intel on what is beings shared. Facebook is expanding its vocabulary beyond “Like” to add verbs: Users will soon be able to “watch” a movie or “read” a book. Facebook also unveiled changes to the permissions process users go through when they install new apps. The new version will let users control in more detail what information their apps share with others.

According to a new study from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, 31% of American adults prefer text messages to phone calls. An additional 14% said the contact method they prefer depends on the situation. To put this in perspective, most Americans (but just barely: 53%) still generally prefer to get voice calls rather than text messages. Also, Pew notes that 4% of cell owners do not make or receive any voice calls on an average day. And 27% of cell owners do not use text messaging, even occasionally.

Kindle – The maker of the world’s most popular e-book reader is rumored to be announcing a color, touch-screen tablet device called the “Kindle Fire,” that claims to have seen the gadget. Here are the Kindle Fire’s specs: 7-inch color screen, compared to 6-inch for current Kindles

– Wi-Fi only (no 3G version)

– Touch-screen navigation

– Glowing LED screen instead of paper-like e-ink

– Android operating system

– Hits stores in November

– Current Kindle will remain on sale

MoboTap, the creator of the popular Dolphin Browser for Android and iPhone, has unleashed a browser for the iPad. The app, Dolphin Browser HD, contains all of the gesture control features that have made it a hit on the Android platform. Drawing a “<” will take you back a page, and drawing a “>” will take you forward. Users can also create their own gestures and shortcuts to access their favorite websites or launch browser commands. (We suggest “M” for Mashable.) The iPad app also includes Dolphin Webzine, the browser’s Flipboard-style system for reading web content, tabbing browsing, a URL bar that predicts what website you’re going to type, and a speed dial for accessing favorite websites with a quick tap. Users can access their bookmarks by swiping from left-to-right or their open tabs by swiping right-to-left.

Entertainment news –

(Mr. Pop Video) Big-voiced R&B diva Vesta Williams, perhaps best-known for her 1980s hits “Don’t Blow A Good Thing” and “Congratulations,” has been found dead of a possible drug overdose in a Southern California hotel room, coroner’s investigators said Friday. She was 53. Williams was found dead at 6:15 p.m. Thursday in an El Segundo hotel room, Los Angeles County coroner’s Capt. John Kades (KAY’-dihs) said.

More than two years after Michael Jackson went into cardiac arrest at his mansion, the doctor accused of responsibility for his death went on trial on Tuesday.

Jackson’s parents, Joe and Katherine, his sisters, Janet and La Toya, and other family members arrived at the Los Angeles court, where dozens of media and fans holding pictures of the dead “Thriller” singer, sunflowers, and placards saying “Justice for Michael” gathered outside. Dr. Conrad Murray’s trial is expected to give the public a glimpse into the King of Pop’s final days as he rehearsed for a series of concerts aimed at restoring a career shattered by a 2005 child molestation trial, despite his acquittal. The trial, which is being televised live in the United States, is expected to last four to six weeks.

Top albums this week –

21 – Adele

Own the Night – Lady Antebellum

Tha Carter IV – Lil Wayne

Staind – Staind

1 – The Beatles

Halfway To Heaven – Brantley Gilbert

Watch The Throne – Jay Z Kanye West

A Dramatic Turn of Events – Dream Theater

Dead Throne – The Devil Wears Prada

Hot hits this week –

Someone Like You – Adele

Moves Like Jagger – Maroon 5 fea. Christina Aguilera

Party Rock Anthem – LMFAO fea. Lauren Bennett & GoonRock

Pumped Up Kicks – Foster the People

(Mr. Pop Video) Stereo Hearts – Gym Class Heroes fea. Adam Levine

Lighters – Bad Meets Evil fea. Bruno Mars

Super Bass – Nicki Minaj

You and I – Lady Gaga

Cheers (Drink To That) – Rihanna

You Make Me Feel… – Cobra Starship

Give Me Everything – Pitbull fea. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer

How to Love – Lil Wayne

Good Life – OneRepublic

Without You – David Guetta fea. Usher

Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)- Katy Perry

Paradise – Coldplay

In The Dark – Dev

I Wanna Go – Britney Spears

Tonight Tonight – Hot Chelle Rae

Rolling In the Deep – Adele

Headlines – Drake

I’m On One – DJ Khaled fea. Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

If I Die Young – The Band Perry

At the movies –

The Lion King

Moneyball (1st week $20.6 million)

Dolphin Tale (1st week $20.3 million)

Abduction (1st week $11.2 million)

Contagion

Drive

The Help

Straw Dogs

I Don’t Know How She Does It

The Debt

Top TV –

1. NFL Football: New Orleans at Green Bay NBC
2. NFL Football: Dallas at N.Y. Jets NBC
3. NFL Thursday Pre-Kick NBC
4. Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick NBC
5. Football Night in America NBC
6. NFL Kickoff 2011 NBC
7. America’s Got Talent” (Wednesday) NBC
8. 9/11: 10 Years Later CBS
9. America’s Got Talent” (Tuesday) NBC
10. NCIS CBS
11. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
12. The O.T. FOX
13. 60 Minutes CBS
14. Big Brother 13″ (Wednesday) CBS
15. NCIS: Los Angeles” (Tuesday CBS
16. Big Brother 13″ (Thursday) CBS
17. Dateline NBC” (Friday) NBC
18. The Big Bang Theory CBS
19. Football Night in America NBC
20. Criminal Minds CBS

Pop Culture Internet History. Web Sites and Facebook Pages Still With Us, Although Their Authors Have Passed-On.

Mr. Pop Culture – I admit, it can be a little creepy – but it’s an increasing by-product of the Internet and the times. Websites and Facebook pages, among others – still alive, although their authors/owners have passed on.

www.claycoleshow.com

Clay Cole was a New York pop culture icon – someone Baby Boomers adored. And, he was a great guy. I had the pleasure of interviewing him October 2010. Clay passed away suddenly the first week of December, 2010.

MrPopCulture Report/Clay Cole Interview – October 2010.

Clay’s wonderful website is stuck on December 2010 – Christmas music and all. He updated it almost daily – until his untimely death.

Do you have stories of someone who passed, whose website or social pages live on??

Gary West – www.mrpopculture.com

Week In Review With Videos – July 1, 2011. News, Pop Culture, Tech, TV, Entertainment. Lady Gaga Slams Critics… Casey Anthony Aquitted…

Week In Review – Week Of July 1, 2011

Compiled By Gary West @ www.mrpopculture.com

In The News -

Former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn was released without bail on Friday(July1) after a dramatic court hearing where the sexual assault case against him appeared to shift in his favor. Strauss-Kahn, who smiled as he walked out of court, still faces felony charges of attempted rape and sexual assault over the alleged attack on a hotel maid in New York. His lawyers said they will seek to have the charges dismissed but the judge said prosecutors were continuing to investigate.

A day after stepping down as CIA director, Leon Panetta was sworn in Friday as secretary of defense. (Mr. Pop Video) He began settling into the job by telling members of the military and their families they are “at the top of my agenda.” He was meeting later with his civilian staff and then with the chiefs of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force. He planned to have lunch with Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs. A spokesman, Doug Wilson, said Panetta intends to work at maintaining close relations with the military at all levels.

Minnesota Government Shutdown – Minnesota lawmakers headed home for a long holiday weekend, bracing for likely public anger as some of them meet constituents for the first time since a failure to reach a budget agreement forced a government shutdown.The reception they get starting Saturday, and during 4th of July parades around the state, could go a long way toward determining how long the shutdown lasts. Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton and GOP leaders had no plans for new talks before Tuesday, five full days after the shutdown started. Minnesota’s second shutdown in six years was striking much deeper than a partial 2005 shutdown. It took state parks and rest stops off line, closed horse tracks and made it impossible to get a fishing license. But it also was hitting the state’s most vulnerable, ending reading services for the blind, silencing a help line for the elderly and stopping child care subsidies for the poor.

The outgoing U.S. commander in Afghanistan marked his last Fourth of July in uniform by speaking to American troops during a re-enlistment ceremony in the south of the country. Gen. David Petraeus, who was recently confirmed as the next director of the CIA, told the 235 troops re-enlisting in Kandahar province that they have achieved progress on the battlefield but that “much work remains” to be done in Afghanistan. “You raised your right hand and said ‘Send me,’ and today you raised your right hand again and said ‘Send me again, if needed,’” he told the soldiers on America’s 235th birthday.

Newly confirmed Defense Secretary Leon Panetta marked his first Fourth of July by making calls to troops serving abroad, the Defense Department said Monday.

Six forward-deployed U.S. service members began their Independence Day with telephone calls from Panetta, who reached out to convey his thanks and support for their service, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs Doug Wilson said. Panetta, who was sworn in as the nation’s 23rd defense secretary on Friday, spoke by phone with service members deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq and Bahrain. The six individuals, representative of America’s men and women in uniform who are away from their families, come from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Army National Guard. Panetta told them how proud he was of their service and emphasized his commitment to fight for them and their families as they are fighting for their country, Wilson said. He told them he looks forward to meeting them during his travels as secretary.

(Mr. Pop Video) A Florida jury has acquitted Casey Anthony of murdering her 2-year-old daughter Caylee. Anthony began crying when the jury’s verdict was read Tuesday after more than 10 hours of deliberations. She hugged her attorney afterward, and a prosecutor shook his head in disbelief. She could have received a death sentence if she had been convicted of first-degree murder. She was found guilty of lying to investigators. Judge Belvin Perry will sentence her Thursday. She could receive up to a year in jail for each count.

President Barack Obama kicked off his first Twitter town hall with — what else? — a tweet. Using a laptop set up on a podium in the East Room of the White House, Obama typed this message: “In order to reduce the deficit, what costs would you cut and what investments would you keep?” The tweet set the tone for the town hall focused on jobs and the economy, and hosted by Twitter, the social media service. The White House sees social media as an opportunity for the president to interact with Americans directly, particularly the younger and more tech-savvy part of the electorate, as his re-election campaign ramps up.

The Obama administration must stop enforcing the ban that prevents gay men and women from serving openly in the U.S. military, a federal appeals court ruled on Wednesday. President Barack Obama last year signed a landmark law repealing the policy that forced gays to keep their sexual orientation secret if they want to be in the military. The Pentagon has been in the process of writing rules for the new policy.

A female grizzly bear attacked and killed a man who encountered the bruin and her cubs while he was hiking with his wife on Wednesday in Yellowstone National Park, park officials said. The fatal mauling occurred about a mile and a half from the start of the Wapiti Lake trail, and another group of hikers nearby heard the victim’s wife crying out for help and used a cell phone to call park rangers for assistance. A National Park Service statement said the couple had inadvertently surprised the mother grizzly and her cubs, and in “an attempt to defend a perceived threat to her cubs, the bear attacked and fatally wounded the man.”

Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee signed into law a bill that would require voters to show identification at the polls in 2012, with a photo required before casting a ballot in 2014, his office announced on Wednesday. “Having reflected a great deal on the issue, I believe that requiring identification at the polling place is a reasonable request to ensure the accuracy and integrity of our elections,” Chafee, an Independent, said in a statement.

A judge sentenced Casey Anthony on Thursday(July7) to four years for lying to investigators but says she could go free in late July or early August because she has already served nearly three years in jail and has had good behavior.  While acquitted of killing and abusing her 2-year-old daughter Caylee, Anthony was convicted of four counts of lying to detectives trying to find her daughter in July 2008. She lied to them about working at the Universal Studios theme park, about leaving her daughter with a non-existent nanny named Zanny, about leaving the girl with friends and about receiving a phone call from her. She’ll be released from jail July 13.

New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week, government data showed on Thursday, but distortions associated with the holiday weekend and a government shutdown in one state made it difficult to get a clear view of the labor market. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 418,000, the Labor Department said.

A gunman opened fire in two separate Michigan homes Thursday(July7), killing seven people, including a child, before leading police on a high-speed chase through downtown Grand Rapids, authorities said. Within hours, dozens of officers with guns drawn had cordoned off a neighborhood near a small lake in the northern part of the city and shut down nearby Interstate 96. State police believed they had the man surrounded but warned residents to stay in their homes. The manhunt began after four people were found dead in one Grand Rapids home and three were found in another across town. Mayor George Heartwell said police were seeking 34-year-old Rodrick Shonte Dantzler.

Flash Mobs – BAD TREND – The headlines from Chicago these days are about “flash mobs” — dozens of young thugs attacking people and cleaning out stores in broad daylight…

  • 15 people storm a couple of city buses, making off with the passengers’ mobile phones and iPods
  • More than 20 young men attack a guy parking his scooter near the downtown campus of Northwestern University. “It was boom, like a swarm of insects,” the victim recalled. They took his phone

Up to 50 people storm a drugstore in the Magnificent Mile shopping district, cleaning out the shelves of merchandise, overwhelming any security that tried to respond

Similar stories of “flash mobs” — often coordinating their attacks via cell phone — come from Washington, D.C.; Venice Beach, California; Philadelphia; and St. Paul, Minn. The trend is building pace at a time when many cities are cutting back their police departments.

Tech News –

Twitter posts way up – As we reach the halfway point of 2011, users of the microblogging service now post 200 million tweets a day, Twitter announced. That’s up from 65 million tweets a day a year ago. Even in little 140-character bites, that’s a lot of verbiage. Twitter offers some context on this: Assuming the average tweet is 25 words, that means that “every day, the world writes the equivalent of a 10 million-page book” — or 8,163 copies of Leo Tolstoy’s epic novel “War and Peace.”

A federal judge has denied Google’s request to dismiss several lawsuits accusing the company of illegally collecting private information from open Wi-Fi networks. The ruling, filed in California court Wednesday, is a setback for Google as it tries to put its “Street View” debacle behind it. In May 2010, Google admitted that the cars it uses to capture images for the “Street View” map feature accidentally collected about 600 gigabytes of data from unencrypted Wi-Fi networks in more than 30 countries. Google, based in Mountain View, Calif., apologized in a blog post and called the data collection “a mistake” Google also said that it never used the data and would work to dispose of it as quickly as possible.But several lawsuits hit a few months later, accusing Google violations of state and federal wiretap laws. The complaints have been consolidated into one case seeking class-action status. In Google’s motion to dismiss, the company maintained that the data collection wasn’t illegal because open Wi-Fi networks are “readily accessible to the general public.”

(Mr. Pop Video) Hackers apparently broke into the FoxNews.com’s Twitter feed for political news early Monday and used it to announce — falsely — that President Barack Obama had been assassinated. Obama was “shot twice at a Ross’ restaurant in Iowa while campaigning. RIP Obama, best regards to the Obama family,” read one of several Twitter messages posted on @FoxNewsPolitics early Monday. “We wish @joebiden the best of luck as our new President of the United States. In such a time of madness, there’s light at the end of tunnel,” the last in the series of tweets said later. An article on FoxNews.com confirmed the hack.

This week, Verizon Wireless, the nation’s second-largest wireless carrier, caps the amount of data downloads allowed under its $30-a-month wireless broadband plan; it will also unveil more costly options for users with big appetites for digital data. The changes will affect only new customers. Customers who now have unlimited data plans, or who sign with Verizon today, will be able to continue paying a flat fee for all the data they wish to download. Verizon follows the country’s number one carrier, AT&T Inc., which did away with unlimited data plans last year. The smallest of the nation’s top four cellular companies, T-Mobile USA, still offers an unlimited service, but the company dramatically slows down data transfers for heavy users – in effect, imposing a speed limit instead of a usage quota. Of the top wireless companies, only Sprint Nextel  still offers unlimited data plans.

Facebook will add Skype video chat to its pages, aiming to spice up the appeal of the world’s No. 1 Internet social networking service while fending off increased competition from Google The agreement, announced by Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg at the company’s Palo Alto, California, headquarters on Wednesday, deepens the company’s cooperation with Microsoft Corp, which is in the process of buying Skype to build up its web presence. Zuckerberg said Facebook has hit a record 750 million users. The new service, rolling out from Wednesday, could be a huge boost for Skype, which currently has about 145 million regular users.

Sports –

(Mr. Pop Video) A man attending a Texas Rangers game with his young son died after falling out of the stands and about 20 feet to the ground while trying to catch a baseball tossed his way Thursday night, the Rangers and Arlington fire officials said. Arlington Fire Department officials in a statement that another fan nearby tried unsuccessfully to grab the man to keep him from falling. They said the victim’s son did not fall. “We had a very tragic accident tonight and one of our fans lost their life reaching over the rail trying to get a ball,” team president Nolan Ryan said. “As an organization, and as our team members and our staff, we’re very heavy-hearted about this, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family.” The accident in Texas occurred in the second inning after Oakland’s Conor Jackson hit a foul ball that ricocheted into left field. Josh Hamilton, the reigning AL MVP, retrieved the ball and tossed it into the stands. Replays on Oakland’s television broadcast show the man reaching for the ball and apparently catching it before tumbling.

Entertainment news –

Patricia Arquette and Thomas Jane are officially single. The couple’s divorce was finalized in Los Angeles. The two, who wed in 2006, will share joint custody of their 8-year-old daughter, Harlow.

Passing – Anna Massey, the member of an acting dynasty whose roles ranged from lonely spinsters to Margaret Thatcher, has died. She was 73. Massey died Saturday after a battle with cancer, with her husband and son at her side, her agent Pippa Markham said Monday.

Mr. Pop Culture/Lady GagaLady Gaga slams critics who accuse her of “[using] the gay community to sell records.” That’s “one of the most ridiculous statements anyone can make about me,” the 25-year-old pop star says. “I would say the top thing I think about every single day of my life, other than my fans, loving the music, and my family being healthy, is social justice and equality.” Gaga (real name: Stefani Germanotta) put her money where her mouth was in a recent controversy with Target. The retailer was planning to sell a special edition of her Born This Way album, but members of the LGBT community were outraged at the deal when Target contributed thousands in cash and in-kind goods to a PAC that supported antigay candidate Tom Emmer in his failed 2010 run for governor of Minnesota. After the incident, Gaga met with the company’s “entire executive staff” and shortly thereafter canceled the deal.

Comedy Central set to roast Charlie Sheen – “You could say I’ve been providing kindling for this Roast for a while,” 45-year-old Sheen says of the special, airing Sept. 19. “It’s time to light it up. It’s going to be epic.”

(Mr. Pop Video) A man arrested outside Paris Hilton’s coastal home was charged Tuesday with disobeying a court order to stay away from the socialite. Sheriff’s deputies arrested James Rainford on Monday, the third-time in less than a year that the 36-year-old has been jailed for trying to meet Hilton. Rainford is expected to be arraigned Tuesday afternoon on the misdemeanor charge. He is being held on $20,000 bail and jail records do not indicate whether he has an attorney. Authorities said Rainford was arrested Monday after paparazzi who were outside Hilton’s home recognized him.

Hot hits this week In 2011 –

Rolling In The Deep – Adele

Give Me Everything- Pitbull fea. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer

PartyRockAnthem – LMFAO fea. lauren Bennett & GoonRock

Super Bass – Nicki Minaj

Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.) – Katy Perry

E.T. – Katy Perry (Mr. Pop Video)

The Edge of Glory – Lady Gaga

Moves Like Jagger – Maroon 5 fea. Christina Aguilera

The Lazy Song – Bruno Mars

How To Love – Lil Wayne

The Show Goes On – Lupe Fiasco

Dirt Road Anthem – Jason Aldean

Just Can’t Get Enough – The Black Eyed Peas

Honey Bee – Blake Shelton

Tonight Tonight – Hot Chelle Rae

On The Floor – Jennifer Lopez

Don’t Wanna Go Home – Jaseon Derulo

Till The World Ends – Britney Spears

Good Life – OneRepublic

I’m On One – DJ Khaled fea. Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

Who Says – Selena Gomez & The Scene

Motivation – Kelly Rowland fea. Lil Wayne

Look At Me Now – Chris Brown fea. Lil Wayne & Busta Rhymes

Knee Deep – Zac Brown Band fea. Jimmy Buffet

Roll Up – Wiz Khalifa

At the movies this week in 2011 –

Transformers: Dark of the Moon (1st week $97.4 million)

Cars 2

Bad Teacher

Larry Crowne – (1st week $13 million)

Monte Carlo (1st week $7.6 million)

Super 8

Green Lantern

Mr. Popper’s Penguins

Bridesmaids

Midnight In Paris

X-Men: First Class

Week In Review With Videos. June 22 2011 In Pop Culture, News, Tech, Entertainment, Music And Television

Week Of June 22, 2011.

Compiled By Gary West @ www.mrpopculture.com

In The News

The Federal Reserve said Wednesday it would again maintain its key interest rate near zero as the pace of the US economic recovery was more sluggish than expected. “The economic recovery is continuing at a moderate pace, though somewhat more slowly than the committee expected,” the policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee said after a two-day meeting.

President Barack Obama, in a widely anticipated speech tonight, announced a brisk drawdown of 33,000 U.S. forces from Afghanistan by the end of next summer, and called more broadly for the U.S. to assume a more pragmatic approach to international interventions in order to focus on economic recovery and nation-building at home.”We are a nation whose strength abroad has been anchored in opportunity for our citizens at home,” Obama said in the brief twelve minute speech from the White House East Room. “Over the last decade, we have spent a trillion dollars on war, at a time of rising debt and hard economic times. Now, we must invest in America’s greatest resource — our people.”

A magnitude-6.7 earthquake rattled northeast Japan on Thursday morning, the U.S. Geological Survey reported. It was the same area of the Pacific where a massive magnitude 9 quake hit on March 11, triggering a deadly tsunami. At least 23,000 people were killed or left missing in those disasters, which destroyed hundreds of homes, offices and factories in northeastern Japan. The Japan Meteorological Agency issued a tsunami warning for Iwate Prefecture after the quake, but canceled it about an hour later.

Sirens wailed across Minot Wednesday as the swollen Souris River overtopped levees five hours ahead of a looming evacuation deadline, setting in motion what is expected to be the worst flooding to hit the North Dakota city in four decades.  The warning was followed by an announcement saying, “All residents must evacuate, Zones 1 through 9,” prompting the last of nearly 11,000 Minot residents to leave their homes for a second time in a month.

The International Energy Agency will release 60 million barrels of oil from strategic government stockpiles held by industrialized consumer nations in a bid to push down oil prices, the 28-member group announced on Thursday. The announcement comes after OPEC failed to raise production at a meeting on June 8 and despite assurances from OPEC’s biggest producer Saudi Arabia that it would lift supplies unilaterally. “Greater tightness in the oil market threatens to undermine the fragile global economic recovery,” the IEA said.

The House refused to vote President Barack Obama the authority for U.S. military operations against Libya on Friday but stopped short of cutting off funds for the mission, a mixed message reminiscent of congressional unease on Vietnam and more recent wars.

In a repudiation of the commander in chief, the House voted overwhelmingly against a resolution that would have favored letting the mission continue for one year while barring U.S. ground forces, a resolution the president said he would welcome.

Governor Andrew Cuomo made same-sex marriages legal (Mr. Pop Culture Video) in New York on Friday(June24), a key victory for gay rights ahead of the 2012 presidential and congressional elections. New York will become the sixth and most populous U.S. state to allow gay marriage. State senators voted 33-29 on Friday evening to approve marriage equality legislation and Cuomo, a Democrat who had introduced the measure, signed it into law. “This vote today will send a message across the country. This is the way to go, the time to do it is now, and it is achievable; it’s no longer a dream or an aspiration. I think you’re going to see a rapid evolution,” Cuomo, who is in his first year of office, told a news conference. “We reached a new level of social justice,” he said.

An asteroid the size of a tour bus flies past Earth today (June 27) so closely it was beneath some of the planet’s satellites. The rock, named asteroid 2011 MD  zoomed by just 7,500 miles (12,000 km) above the planet, making a sharp turn forced by Earth’s gravity before winging off into space again. The flyby will occur at about 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT). There was no risk of an impact, NASA scientists said. The space rock, estimated to be between 29 to 98 feet (9 to 30 meters) wide, was too small to survive a plunge through our atmosphere anyway. An asteroid this size, if it were mostly stony, would break apart and burn up before hitting the surface. Iron-heavy space rocks are better at surviving the fiery entry, however.

Riot police fired tear gas at youths hurling rocks and petrol bombs near the Greek finance ministry Tuesday, trying to quell the anger unleashed during mass protests and a general strike as parliament debated new cost-cutting measures. The latest austerity measures must pass in two parliamentary votes Wednesday and Thursday if Greece is to receive another batch of bailout funds to see it beyond the middle of next month. If the votes don’t pass, Greece could become the first eurozone nation to default on its debts, sending shock waves through the global economy.

Greece’s parliament approved deeply unpopular austerity measures despite worsening street violence on Wednesday(June29), in a vote vital to secure international aid and prevent the euro zone’s first sovereign debt default. Lawmakers passed a five-year package of spending cuts, tax rises and state asset sales by a comfortable margin of 155 votes to 138 in a roll-call vote, handing a victory to embattled Prime Minister George Papandreou. “We must avoid the country’s collapse at all costs. Now is not the time to step back,” the Socialist premier told lawmakers just before the vote.

An appeals court on Wednesday upheld President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare law that requires Americans to buy insurance as constitutional, a victory for the White House. The Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, based in Cincinnati, said the “minimum coverage provision is a valid exercise of legislative power by Congress under the Commerce Clause” of the U.S. Constitution.

In a blunt challenge to Republicans in Congress, President Barack Obama insisted Wednesday that elimination of selected tax breaks for oil companies and the super-wealthy must be included in any deficit reduction plan.”You stay here. Let’s get it done,” he all-but-lectured lawmakers, holding open the possibility of keeping Congress in Washington unless there is significant progress by week’s end on a deal to cut deficits, raise the $14.3 trillion debt limit and avert a threatened financial crisis.

President Barack Obama on Thursday(June30) honored outgoing Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ four decades of service (Mr. Pop Video), including the past 4 1/2 years in charge of the Pentagon, by surprising him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. It’s the highest honor a president can give a civilian. “I can think of no better way to express the gratitude of the nation to Bob Gates than with a very special recognition,” Obama said as he asked Gates to step forward to receive the award.

The Senate abandoned plans for a July 4 break as time dwindled for lawmakers to strike a compromise on avoiding a government default and reducing mammoth federal deficits. In a challenge to President Barack Obama, the chamber’s top Republican invited him to the Capitol to discuss the impasse with GOP lawmakers. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., announced the scheduling change Thursday, a day after President Barack Obama prodded lawmakers to act swiftly to extend the government’s ability to borrow money. The Senate had been scheduled to take a week’s break but instead will meet beginning Tuesday.

Sports –

The Los Angeles Dodgers filed for bankruptcy protection in the latest skirmish of a running feud between Dodger owner Frank McCourt and Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig. McCourt said he had lined up $150 million in debtor-in-possession financing so he could keep control of the team during bankruptcy proceedings. The decision to file bankruptcy was taken ”to protect the franchise financially and provide a path that will enable the club to consummate a media transaction and capitalize the team,” McCourt said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times.

Tech News –

The hacker group LulzSec has alarmed police in Arizona this week after releasing sensitive information about officers. The group said they posted the information in response to Arizona’s controversial immigration law. “We are releasing hundreds of private intelligence bulletins, training manuals, personal email correspondence, names, phone numbers, addresses and passwords belonging to Arizona law enforcement,” the group said in a statement. “We are targeting AZDPS (Arizona Department of Public Safety) specifically because we are against SB 1070 and the racial profiling anti-immigrant police state that is Arizona.”

Nine months after the launch of New Twitter, the social media company is letting users know that the old version of Twitter will be completely eliminated “very, very soon.” The old version of Twitter always asked users to switch to the new version of Twitter, but today the message was changed, and it’s more urgent. “You will automatically be upgraded to New Twitter very, very soon,” the top of old Twitter now reads. The color of the top bar has also been changed to yellow as an alert to users. We’re not sure what Twitter means by “very,very soon” — it could be days or even weeks until Twitter flips the switch (we’ve emailed the Twitter for comment). However, it’s clear that Twitter is finally ready to eliminate the old version of Twitter altogether and bring everybody into the new design.

The Supreme Court on Monday(June 27) refused to let California clamp down on the sale or rental of violent video games to children, saying governments lack authority to “restrict the ideas to which children may be exposed” despite complaints that the popular and fast-changing technology allows the young to simulate acts of brutality. On a 7-2 vote, the high court upheld a federal appeals court decision to throw out California’s ban on the sale or rental of violent video games to minors. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Sacramento had ruled that the law violated minors’ rights under the First Amendment, and the high court agreed.

Three of Twitter’s key developers– Biz Stone, Evan Williams and Jason Goldman — are launching a new venture. “Our plan is to develop new projects and work on solving big problems aligned along a simple mission statement: The Obvious Corporation develops systems that help people work together to improve the world,” Stone wrote Tuesday in a blog post announcing their plans. The move is the latest musical-chairs shuffle at Twitter, which is undergoing as the five-year-old venture matures from a startup to a tech industry power player.

Google on Tuesday unveiled Google+, yet another attempt by the search giant to overcome its past miscues in the social networking space. More people visit Google’s network of websites than Facebook each month, but Facebook is killing the search company in categories that advertisers care most about: Time spent and pages viewed. Users spent 62% more time on Facebook than on Google last month, and viewed more than twice the number of pages on Facebook as they did on Google, according to comScore.

In the latest of a recent slew of antitrust complaints filed against Google, French search company 1plusV said Tuesday it would seek $423 million in damages from the American search giant. 1plusV, which makes a host of niche search engines for French speakers, said the sum it is seeking equals the amount of business it lost because of Google’s alleged anticompetitive business practices. This would be the largest such claim against Google in Europe. The French company claims Google blacklisted 30 of its search engines from its search results from 2007 to 2010. Though 1plusV said some have recently been “white-listed,” the company believes it suffered irreparable damage.

Google has launched a new, mysterious service called What Do You Love. It’s a simple search box box, similar to the one on Google’s homepage, but it returns results from over 20 different Google services, including Google Translate, Trends, YouTube, Maps, Groups etc. The results are presented in little boxes which can, in some cases, be expanded by clicking on the icon in the lower right corner; if you need even more results, you can always click the button in the upper right corner of the box and go directly to the chosen service.

Media –

MSNBC has suspended political analyst and Time magazine writer Mark Halperin indefinitely over a remark he made about President Obama Thursday morning. “Mark Halperin’s comments this morning were completely inappropriate and unacceptable,” said MSNBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines in a statement. “We apologize to the President, the White House and all of our viewers. We strive for a high level of discourse and comments like these have no place on our air.” Appearing on “Morning Joe” this morning, Halperin, senior political analyst at Time and MSNBC and co-author of the 2008 election opus “Game Change,” sought to characterize the president’s demeanor at a press briefing the previous day. Are we on the seven-second delay?” Halperin asked. “We have it. We can use it. Go for it. Let’s see what happens,” co-anchor Joe Scarborough replied. “I thought he was a dick yesterday,” Halperin replied, sending the hosts into a brief moment of panic. Halperin apologized later on in the show and issued his own mea culpa hours later via MSNBC.

Entertainment news –

U.S. Marshals arrested Don Lapre (Mr. Pop Video) in Tempe, Arizona, after he failed to appear in court on fraud charges linked to his vitamin business. Earlier this month, Lapre, of Phoenix, was indicted by a federal grand jury, which charged that his business, Greatest Vitamin in the World, signed up 226,794 people and promised them money for selling vitamins and recruiting others to the business. In the end, prosecutors say, investors and customers spent nearly $51.8 million, but received just $6.4 million in commissions. Between 2004 and 2007, they say, Lapre himself took in at least $2.2 million from the business. The self-proclaimed infomercial king was charged with 41 counts of conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud, promotional money laundering and transactional money laundering. He has acknowledged that he “did not have the perfect company,” but denied breaking the law.

Passing – Peter Falk, the stage and movie actor who became identified as the squinty, rumpled detective in “Columbo,” which spanned 30 years in prime-time television and established one of the most iconic characters in movie police work, has died. He was 83. Falk died Thursday in his Beverly Hills home, according to a statement released Friday by family friend Larry Larson.

Veteran US comedian Jerry Lewis has had to cancel a sell-out Sydney tour after collapsing from exhaustion as he prepared to take the stage, promoters said Saturday. The 85-year-old was due to perform before a packed house in western Sydney Friday night to raise money for muscular dystrophy but the event was called off at the last minute after he fell ill. Lewis has cancelled the remainder of his Sydney tour to rest and will return to the stage on Thursday for a Melbourne performance if his health permits.

Neal Patrick Harris The 38-year-old How I Met Your Mother star tweeted Saturday that he and partner David Birtka are planning to say “I do” now that gay marriage is legal in New York! “David and I did propose to each other, but over five years ago!” he explained. “We’ve been wearing engagement rings for ages, waiting for an available. date.”

BET Awards – Steve Harvey was recognized for his humanitarian work at the BET Awards. Patti Labelle also accepted a special honor at Sunday’s ceremony; Gladys Knight presented her with the Lifetime Achievement Award. The night’s leading nominee, , Chris Brown collected four awards in all. The 21-year-old singer won a pair of prizes early in the show and two fan-voted awards at the end of the ceremony. Brown was named best male R&B artist and won best collaboration for his song “Look At Me Now” with Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes.

Michael Jackson’s iconic red and black leather jacket from his “Thriller” video sold for $1.8 million in an online auction. Julien’s Auctions, which oversaw the bidding, announced that Milton Verret of Austin, Texas, bought the jacket and plans to display it in the city’s Dell Children’s Hospital.

Mexican pop singer Paulina Rubio (Mr. Pop Video)  is charged in Miami with refusing to comply with police officers after a traffic accident. According to an arrest report, Rubio’s BMW collided with another car Saturday near Miami’s Little Havana. When asked to get out of her car, Rubio allegedly refused, cursed at an officer and said she was nervous and that “all of you Miami cops are abusive.” The officer placed Rubio in handcuffs. The report states that Rubio screamed for help and threat ened to call her attorney. Police say Rubio eventually calmed down and apologized. She is charged with refusing to obey a lawful command, obstruction of justice and disorderly conduct.

The military-backed government of Myanmar has deported Hollywood actress Michelle Yeoh, who stars as pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in an upcoming movie, officials said Tuesday. The Malaysian actress arrived in the country’s main city, Yangon, on June 22 and was deported the same day because she was on a blacklist, a government official said. The official, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the press, did not say why Yeoh was on the list. But Myanmar’s repressive government has routinely rejected visa requests of journalists and perceived critics for years.

Marries – America Ferrera  and longtime boyfriend Ryan Piers Williams are married, her rep confirms.

Lindsay Lohan gets released from home detention on Wednesday(June29) after spending 35 days at her Los Angeles apartment for stealing a gold necklace, authorities said.A private company that handles monitoring equipment for home detention inmates removed the electronic ankle bracelet from the “Mean Girls” star on Wednesday morning, said Steve Whitmore, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Department.Lohan was sentenced in May to 120 days in jail, but the 24 year-old actress qualified for a shorter period of house arrest under programs for nonviolent offenders and to reduce overcrowding in Los Angeles jails.

A man convicted of attempting to burglarize Paris Hilton’s home has been sentenced to two years in state prison. City News Service reported that Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Kellogg also recommended during Wednesday’s hearing that Nathan Lee Parada undergo mental health counseling. A jury took less than an hour in April to convict the 32-year-old of felony attempted residential burglary for trying to break into Hilton’s house in August. The socialite testified during Parada’s trial about being awoken early Aug. 24 to the sound of Parada banging on Hilton’s window with a knife. Parada told a detective he planned to steal as much as he could carry and move to a deserted island.

Goodbye Glenn Beck – as he bid adieu to Fox News on Thursday, as the controversial host prepares to launch his own network. However, there were no tears from Beck, who instead promised his fans he would help fix the country and even poked fun at his own persona.”I’m the only host who is supposedly the most dangerous person in America because of my influence and the least influential person in America because my ratings are supposedly declining,” the 47-year-old said on his show. Nevertheless, Beck thanked Fox News chief Roger Ailes, the man who canceled him, during his farewell show Thursday(June30).

Music news –

Rhinestone Cowboy” singer Glen Campbell (Mr. Pop Video) says he is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, and has recorded one last album as a farewell to his fans. Campbell, 75, had been suffering from short-term memory loss for years, but the terminal Alzheimer’s diagnosis only came six months ago, according to an interview published in People magazine on Wednesday. “I still love making music,” he was quoted as saying. “And I still love performing for my fans. I’d like to thank them for sticking with me through thick and thin.”

Top albums this week in 2011 –

Hell: The Sequel – Bad Meets Evil

21 – Adele

Dream With me – Jackie Evancho

Born this Way – Lady Gaga

My Kinda Party – Jason Alean

All Things Bright and Beautiful – Owl City

15 Minutes: Fame… Can You… Barry Maniloww

Pieces of Me – Ledisi

This Is Country Music – Brad Paisley

NOW 38

The Book of Mormon – Original Broadway Cast

Wasting Light – Foo Fighters

Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

Teenage Dream – Katy Perry

Set The World On Fire – Black Veil Brides

NOW That’s What I Call Country

Journey’s Greatest Hits

Ronnie Dunn

Speak Now – Taylor Swift

Codes and Keys – Death Cab For Cutie

Ukulele Songs – Eddie Vedder

Nothing But The Best – Frank Sinatra

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

All 6’s & 7’s – Tech N9ne

At the movies –

Cars 2 (1st week $68 million)

Bad Teacher (1st week $31 million)

Green Lantern

Super 8

Mr. Popper’s Penguins

X-Men: First Class

The Hangover Part II

Bridesmaids

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Midnight in Paris

Kung Fu Panda 2

Top TV – (See Mr. Pop Video)

1. America’s Got Talent” (Wednesday) NBC
2. America’s Got Talent” (Tuesday) NBC
3. The Voice NBC
4. America’s Got Talent” (Wednesday) NBC NBC
5. The Voice Results Show NBC
6. NCIS CBS
7. NCIS: Los Angeles CBS
8. The Mentalist CBS
9. Copa Oro 2011 Soccer: U.S. vs. Mexico
10. The Bachelorette ABC
11. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS
12. Wipeout” (Thursday) ABC
13. The Big Bang Theory CBS
14. 60 Minutes CBS
15. Expedition Impossible ABC
16. Copa Oro 2011 Soccer: Honduras vs. Mexico
17. So You Think You Can Dance” (Thursday) FOX
18. Criminal Minds CBS
19. So You Think You Can Dance” (Wednesday) FOX
20. America’s Got Talent” (Monday) NBC

Week Of May 22-31 2011 In Pop Culture, News, Tech, Entertainment (With Videos)

A Complete Look At The Week Of May 22-May 31 In Pop Culture, News, Tech, Entertainment And More.

Compiled By Gary West @ www.mrpopculture.com

In The News -

Seventeen bombs exploded Sunday within hours of one another in Baghdad, killing at least 19 people and wounding more than 80, Iraqi authorities said. The bombings came the same day Britain wrapped up its military mission in Iraq, leaving a predominantly American military presence that is expected to disappear by the end of the year under a U.S.-Iraqi security pact that requires U.S. troops to withdraw from the country. The blasts Sunday were the latest in a spate in recent weeks that have raised concerns about Iraq’s ability to protect itself. Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said he plans to meet with Iraqi political leaders this month to discuss whether to request U.S. troops remain in Iraq beyond the Jan. 1, 2012, withdrawal deadline.

The Los Angeles police chief says a tip from a parole officer led to the arrest of one of the suspects in the attack on a San Francisco Giants fan outside Dodger Stadium after the rival teams’ season opener. At an afternoon news conference at the stadium, Chief Charlie Beck said the man detained early Sunday is believed to be the “main aggressor” in the March 31 beating that left Bryan Stow with brain damage.

Spanish cyclist Xavier Tondo (Video) was killed in a freak accident on Monday in which he was crushed between his car and a garage door at a ski resort in southern Spain, a police source said. Tondo, 32, was in his car about to leave the garage of an apartment building of the Sierra Nevada resort Monday morning to continue training for the Tour de France. For reasons that remain unclear, he got out of the vehicle and became trapped between his car and the automatic door of the garage, a police source in the nearby city of Granada said.

A massive tornado that tore a 6-mile path across southwestern Missouri killed at least  123 with 750 people injured and many more missing, authorities said on Tuesday. Iit slammed into the city of Joplin, ripping into a hospital, crushing cars like soda cans and leaving a forest of splintered tree trunks behind where entire neighborhoods once stood. Authorities warned that the death toll could climb as search and rescue workers continued their efforts. Their task was made more miserable as a new thunderstorm with strong winds, heavy rain pelted part of the city with quarter-sized hail.

Violent thunderstorms mrpopvideo here roared across middle America on Tuesday(May24), killing six people in two states, with several tornadoes touching down in Oklahoma and high winds pounding rural Kansas. The high-powered storms arrived as forecast, just two days after a massive tornado tore through the southwest Missouri town of Joplin and killed 122 people.

Regulators launched one of the biggest ever crackdowns on oil price manipulation on Tuesday, suing two well-known traders and two trading firms owned by Norwegian billionaire John Fredriksen for allegedly making $50 million by squeezing markets in 2008. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said traders James Dyer of Oklahoma’s Parnon Energy, and Nick Wildgoose of Europe-based Arcadia Energy, amassed large physical positions at a key U.S. trading hub to create the impression of tight supplies that would boost oil prices. Later they dumped those barrels back onto the market, causing prices to crash and racking up profits from short positions they had accrued in futures markets, the suit said. “Defendants conducted a manipulative cycle, driving the price of WTI (crude) to artificial highs and then back down, to make unlawful profits,” the lawsuit filed in New York said.

Elizabeth Smart says she was thrilled with the two life sentences given to the man who kidnapped her from the bedroom of her Utah home nearly nine years ago. Smart said at a news conference Wednesday after the hearing that she fully believes defendant David Brian Mitchell knew exactly what he was doing when he abducted and raped her, despite arguments by his lawyers for years that he was mentally incompetent to stand trial.

Fierce fighting among apparent rival drug gangs in western Mexico bloodied one highway with 28 dead, while in a nearby state more than 700 people huddled in shelters after fleeing villages that had become battlegrounds. The violence, which appeared to be unrelated, escalated Wednesday(May25) in the western states of Nayarit and Michoacan, where drug cartels have been warring for territory.

Gen. Ratko Mladic, the brutal Bosnian Serb general suspected of leading the bloody massacre of 8,000 Muslim men and boys, was arrested in an early morning raid Thursday in Serbia after more than a decade hiding from genocide charges, the country’s president said. The arrest 16 years after Mladic was indicted by the U.N. war crimes tribunal could be a jolt for Serbia’s lagging efforts to join the European Union.

Yemen – More than 40 Yemenis were killed in pitched street battles in the capital on Thursday as fighting aimed at ending President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s three-decade-long rule threatened to ignite civil war.

The Supreme Court upheld an Arizona law Thursday that penalizes businesses for hiring workers who are in the United States illegally, rejecting arguments that states have no role in immigration matters. By a 5-3 vote, the court said that federal immigration law gives states the authority to impose sanctions on employers who hire unauthorized workers. The ruling cheered supporters of tougher immigration laws who said it would encourage states to take new steps, especially in the employment area.

Egypt lifted a four-year-old blockade on the Gaza Strip’s main link to the outside world Saturday(May28), bringing relief to the crowded territory’s 1.5 million Palestinians but deepening a rift with Israel since the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak earlier this year.

The Egyptian move will allow thousands of Gazans to move freely in and out of the area — heightening Israeli fears that militants and weapons could easily reach its doorstep.

Seven more people were confirmed dead over the last 24 hours, bringing the number of fatalities from the powerful Joplin tornado to 139, the city confirmed on Saturday(May28).

The tornado, already the deadliest single twister in the United States since 1947, injured more than 900 people, though officials said that figure could be higher because some people did not go to hospitals.

Archaeologists recovered the first anchor from what’s believed to be the wreck of the pirate Blackbeard’s flagship off the North Carolina coast Friday, a move that might change plans about how to save the rest of the almost 300-year-old artifacts from the central part of the ship.

A massive and unprecedented outbreak of bacterial infections linked to contaminated vegetables claimed two more lives in Europe on Tuesday, driving the death toll to 16. The number of sick rose to more than 1,150 people in at least eight nations. Nearly 400 people in Germany were battling a severe and potentially fatal version of the infection that attacks the kidneys. A U.S. expert said doctors had never seen so many cases of the condition, hemolytic uremic syndrome, tied to a foodborne illness outbreak before.

The Illinois House of Representatives on Monday passed a gambling expansion bill that would bring a casino to Chicago. The measure passed by a vote of 65-50. New Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel supports having a casino in the city and urged the state’s Senate to “act swiftly to pass this bill.”

House Republicans dealt defeat to their own proposal for a $2.4 trillion increase in the nation’s debt limit Tuesday, a political gambit designed to reinforce a demand for spending cuts to accompany any increase in government borrowing. The vote was lopsided, with just 97 in favor of the measure and 318 against. House Democrats accused the GOP of political demagoguery, while the Obama administration maneuvered to avoid taking sides — or giving offense to majority Republicans.

Passing – Former Texas Governor Bill Clements, who was the state’s first Republican governor since Reconstruction when he took office in 1979, has died at the age of 94. His family said in a statement that he died after a brief hospital stay surrounded by his wife, daughter, and numerous family members. He had been ill for several months, the statement said. Clements, who served two terms as governor, from 1979 to 1983 and from 1987 to 1991, was remembered by current Governor Rick Perry as “the father of the modern day Republican party” in the state.

Sports –

Hall of Fame catcher Gary Carter has a brain tumor that “appears to be malignant”, doctors at Duke University Medical Center said on Friday. The 11-times All-Star was diagnosed with four brain tumors in Florida last week and had biopsies done on one of them at Duke University in North Carolina earlier on Friday.

With the NFL lockout in full swing, John Elway must really be bored. Somehow Elway — the Denver Broncos vice president and Hall-of-Fame quarterback — became aware of the Fort Collins, Colo., punk band “Elway,” and decided he’s just not cool with the group using his surname. The Broncos legend’s lawyer has requested that the band change its name, but stopped short of suing or issuing a cease and desist order.

NFL quarterback Tony Romo and girlfriend Candice Crawford got hitched at Arlington Hall in Dallas, Texas on Saturday evening. Over 600 guests were invited to the nuptials.

Wins The Indy 500 – The race car sponsored by Justin Timberlake’s’s William Rast clothing line won the Indy 500 in Indianapolis, Indiana on Sunday.”What a Memorial Day weekend!” the singer-actor tweeted. “The William Rast car just won the Indy 500!” The car, driven by racing veteran Dan Wheldon, beat out 32 other drivers for the coveted Borg-Warner Trophy.

Tech news –

Yahoo is rolling out an upgraded version of its e-mail service to its 284 million users. The revamped service, which will become available to users in the coming weeks, will be twice as fast as previous versions and integrate more seamlessly with social networks. “This latest version of Yahoo! Mail is faster, safer, easier to use, and offers a seamless experience across PC, mobile and tablet devices,” said David McDowell, a director of product management for the company.  Users of the new service will be able to respond instantly to messages from Facebook from their inbox while sharing notifications from Twitter, Facebook and Zynga via a new Updates tab.

A computer security researcher has found a flaw in Microsoft Corp’s widely used Internet Explorer browser that he said could let hackers steal credentials to access FaceBook, Twitter and other websites. He calls the technique “cookiejacking.” “Any website. Any cookie. Limit is just your imagination,” said Rosario Valotta, an independent Internet security researcher based in Italy. Hackers can exploit the flaw to access a data file stored inside the browser known as a “cookie,” which holds the login name and password to a web account, Valotta said via email. Once a hacker has that cookie, he or she can use it to access the same site, said Valotta, who calls the technique “cookiejacking.”

Calling the case a “brazen and outrageous fraud,” Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg urged a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit by a New York man claiming he owns a huge stake in the social networking website. In a filing Thursday with the U.S. District Court in Buffalo, New York, Facebook Inc and Zuckerberg said the lawsuit by Paul Ceglia is based on a “doctored contract and fabricated evidence.” They also called the plaintiff “an inveterate scam artist whose misconduct extends across decades and borders.” Ceglia, a wood pellet salesman from Wellsville, New York, has contended that he contracted in 2003 for 50 percent of Zuckerberg’s interest in what became Facebook. Facebook is privately held, but analysts have said it could be worth $70 billion should it go public, perhaps in 2012. Forbes magazine in March estimated Zuckerberg’s net worth at $13.5 billion.

Apple has confirmed maybe the worst kept secret in Silicon Valley: It’s been working on a cloud service, and will announce it at the June 6 Worldwide Developers Conference. So now we know annual developer’s conference will unveil “iCloud®, Apple’s upcoming cloud services offering,” but we don’t know yet what it is, or what exactly will reside at the domain name it may have bought for $4.5 million in April.

Intel plans to unveil something called “Ultrabook” – a slim laptop that will run on its second-generation core chips. Look for it later this year.

iCloud could be the mythical iTunes streaming service, a possibility that is looking increasingly likely now that Apple has most of the major record labels signed up for it, in a space pioneered by Amazon and Google, which has no such deals. Or it could be Apple’s version of DropBox, the amazing sync and storage service that currently glues together the whole iOS ecosystem along with its desktop service.

PayPal is suing Google for allegedly stealing its employees and trade secrets that may have led to the launch of Google’s mobile payment service. The 28-page lawsuit, filed in a superior court in San Jose, Calif., late Thursday, accuses Google) and two former PayPal employees who now work at Google of implementing PayPal’s confidential trade secrets related to mobile payment technology. This as Former PayPal employees Stephanie Tilenius and Osama Bedier announce the launch of Google Wallet in New York, Thursday.

Entertainment News –

Lady Gaga fans were delighted Monday to learn that they could download her new album, Born This Way, from Amazon for a mere $.99 — until, of course, technical difficulties set in. Downloads of the album are delayed, leaving folks unable to get the entire album immediately upon purchase. Amazon issued the following statement: “Amazon is experiencing high volume and downloads are delayed. If customers order today, they will get the full Lady Gaga, Born This Way album for $0.99. Thanks for your patience.”

The animated series starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a superhero is officially on hold. The companies behind “The Governator” (see mrpopvideo) said Friday they have stopped working on the budding franchise that Schwarzenegger helped announce to much fanfare in Cannes, France, last month. “In light of recent events, A Squared Entertainment, POW, Stan Lee Comics, and Archie Comics, have halted production” on the project, the companies said in a written statement. There is no word when or if production on the planned TV series, comic book, movie and video game will resume. “The Governator” is to star Schwarzenegger as a superhero living a double life: A family man and former governor who secretly fights global villainy and modern-day disasters alongside a team of hip teenagers.

Joseph Brooks, the Academy Award-winning songwriter of “You Light Up My Life” who was awaiting trial on charges of sexually assaulting more than a dozen women, was found dead Sunday of an apparent suicide in his Manhattan apartment, police said. Brooks, 73, was discovered in his Upper East Side apartment around 12:30 p.m. by a friend with whom he had planned to have lunch, police spokesman Paul Browne said. It was not immediately clear how long his body had been there. Brooks’ death comes five months after his son was arrested in an unrelated, high-profile case. The son is charged with murdering his girlfriend, whose body was found in December in an overflowing bathtub at a swank hotel in SoHo.

“Planet of the Apes” actress and former model Estella Warren was arrested after a late-night crash that led to her allegedly assaulting a police officer then trying to flee from custody, officials said Tuesday. Warren was driving down Harper Avenue near West Hollywood when she crashed into three parked cars, Los Angeles police Officer Sarah Faden said. Someone heard the noise of the crashes and came to see what was going on. That person called police then pursued Warren when it was clear she wasn’t going to stop and leave her information, Faden said.

Justin Bieber had an amazing night at the 2011 Billboard Music Awards that included six awards –and a kiss from Selena Gomez. (mrpopvideohere) The 17-year-old singing sensation took home a slew of awards at the Las Vegas awards show, including Digital Artist of the Year, Top New Artist and the Fan Favorite award and before be took to the stage to accept his New Artist award, he planted a kiss on Selena who he was sitting with him in the audience. On stage, he didn’t thank Selena specifically, but gave shout outs to “my whole family, [talent manager] Scooter Braun, Usher – basically everyone who helped me get out of my hometown and live my dream.”

Lindsay Lohan’s father has pleaded not guilty to attacking his ex-girlfriend during an argument earlier this year in California. Michael Lohan entered the plea to misdemeanor domestic violence battery Monday in Beverly Hills. He was arrested in March after his ex-girlfriend, Kate Major, accused him of abusing her and preventing her from calling 911.

Passing – Phyllis Avery, who played the wife of Ray Milland in 75 episodes of the 1953-55 CBS comedy “Meet Mr. McNulty,” died May 19 of heart failure at her home in Los Angeles. She was 88. In “McNulty” (later called “The Ray Milland Show”), Milland played a professor at a college for girls, with Avery as his wife, Peggy. During her 50-year career, the petite blonde also co-starred in the 1960-62 CBS soap opera “The Clear Horizon” and on such shows as “Peter Gunn,” “Have Gun — Will Travel,” “The Rifleman,” “The Millionaire,” “Rawhide” and “Perry Mason.”

Passing – Longtime CNBC anchor Mark Haines (in mrpopvideohere) has died Wednesday. He was 65. He died unexpectedly at his home Tuesday night, according to CNBC, which did not offer a cause of death.

Goodbye Oprah – Oprah Winfey signed off her long-running talk show, Wednesday(May25) in an emotional hour that featured just one guest: Winfrey herself. Surrounded by 300 audience members and celeb pals like Maria Shriver, Gayle King and Winfrey’s longtime beau, Stedman Graham, the host, 57, described her talk show exit as “all sweet, no bitter.” “There are no words to match this moment,” Winfrey said in the show’s opening moments. “This show has been going on for 4561 days of my life.” Later, the host recalled her early days on the Chicago-based series, sans a stylist and publicist. “[I had] just a Jheri Curl and a bad fur coat,” she joked.

Actress Lindsay Lohan turned herself in to Los Angeles jail authorities early on Thursday and has begun serving a sentence for jewelry theft under house arrest, officials said. Lohan, 24, turned up at a Los Angeles jail at 5 am on Thursday, according to official records.

Left-leaning Ed Schultz has been suspended from MSNBC for referring to fellow host Laura Ingraham as a “right-wing slut” and “talk slut” on his syndicated show Tuesday. In a statement released Wednesday, the cable channel said: “MSNBC management met with Ed Schultz this afternoon and accepted his offer to take one week of unpaid leave for the remarks he made yesterday on his radio program. Ed will address these remarks on his show tonight, and immediately following begin his leave. Remarks of this nature are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.”

An appeals court on Friday(May 27) refused to reconsider music producer  Phil Spector’s appeal of his murder conviction, saying there was overwhelming evidence of his guilt. The California 2nd District Court of Appeal panel acknowledged it did not consider an issue that defense lawyers now say was critical to his conviction. The panel blamed the lawyers for failing to sufficiently brief the point and said they had no obligation to consider it.

Amercian Idol Season #10 Winner – Beam Him Up – Scotty McCreery! Runner up is Lauren Alainia. 122 million votes were cast.

Lady Gaga and Rihanna – (Friday May 27) kIcked off summer music on Friday with two morning concerts in New York City. Mama Monster and her Little Monsters stormed Central Park for a concert on “Good Morning America.” Meanwhile, Rihanna did her thing for the “Today” show over at Rockefeller Plaza.

Passing – Jeff Conaway, who starred in the sitcom “Taxi,” played swaggering Kenickie in the movie musical “Grease” and publicly battled drug and alcohol addiction on “Celebrity Rehab,” died Friday. He was 60. The actor was taken off life support Thursday and died Friday morning at Encino Tarzana Medical Center, according to one of his managers, Kathryn Boole.

Chart-topping hip-hop star Sean Kingston remained hospitalized in intensive care on Monday, a day after his personal watercraft hit a bridge in Miami Beach, a spokesman for his record label said. Kingston, 21, and a female passenger were injured when the watercraft hit the Palm Island Bridge early Sunday evening. They were plucked from the water by a passing boater. The extent of their injuries was not known.

The former “Brady Bunch” middle child and the first “America’s Next Top Model” have gone their separate ways. After five years together, Christopher Knight (53), and Adrianne Curry, 28, have called it quits… on their five-year anniversary. “After starting a relationship with what seemed to be irreconcilable differences, the couple has reached a period where those differences are no longer appreciated. The decision was mutually reached after it became clear to both that some perspective was needed in order to assess their unique union. Not unlike all marriages, work must be put in,” the couple’s manager said in a statement.

Pollstar TOP 20 CONCERT TOURS

1. (1) Bon Jovi; $2,465,286; $103.09. (Bon Jovi Video)

2. (2) Lady Gaga; $1,722,078; $96.77.

3. (3) Rod Stewart / Stevie Nicks; $1,455,243; $107.14.

4. (5) Elton John; $1,140,460; $95.44.

5. (4) Kenny Chesney; $1,127,293; $68.41.

6. (6) George Strait / Reba / Lee Ann Womack; $1,021,356; $74.72.

7. (7) Sugarland; $422,677; $48.27.

8. (8) Kid Rock; $409,670; $42.10.

9. (9) Jeff Dunham; $314,902; $47.70.

10. (10) Rain — A Tribute To The Beatles; $287,710; $68.18.

11. (New) Kem; $223,169; $58.80.

12. (13) James Taylor; $222,444; $76.33.

13. (11) Yanni; $221,929; $69.36.

14. (12) Avenged Sevenfold; $219,807; $36.13.

15. (15) Robert Plant And The Band Of Joy; $204,870; $63.80.

16. (14) “Music As A Weapon Tour” / Korn / Disturbed; $201,696; $47.59.

17. (16) Heart; $189,283; $70.29.

18. (17) Tiesto; $188,718; $58.52.

19. (18) Sarah McLachlan; $187,445; $62.03.

20. (19) “Riverdance”; $169,351; $58.22.

Top albums this week –

21 – Adele

NOW 38

Holding Onto Strings Better Left To Fray – Seether

Hot Sauce Committee Part Two – Beastie Boys

Turtleneck & Chain – The Lonely Island

Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

Helplessness Blues – Fleet Foxes

Never Say Ever: The Remixes – Justin Bieber

Rome – Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi

Love? – Jennifer Lopez

II Volo – II Volo

Lovestrong. Chrstina Peri

Give Till It’s Gone – Ben Harper

Michael Grimm – Michael Grimm

Lemonade Mouth – soundtrack

19 – Adele

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

The Way It Was – Parachute

Wasting Light – Foo Fighters

Disc-Overy – Tinie Tempah

F.A.M.E. – Chris Brown

My World 2.0

In Your Dreams – Stevie Nicks

Teenage Dream – Katy Perry

At the movies –

The Hangover Part II (1st week $103 million)

Kung Fu Panda 2 (1st week $60 million)

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides – (1st week $90 million)

Bridesmaids

Thor

Fast Five

Priest

Rio

Jumping The Broom

Something Borrowed

Water For Elephants

Tyler Perrys  Madea’s Big Happy Family

Soul Surfer

Tangled

Best Of Bachman, Turner Overdrive (Best Of B.T.O.). When Was It Originally Released? Pop Culture Music History.

Mr. Pop Culture -

Canada gave us some terrific music  – and BTO was right up there with the best of them

If you grew up in the 1970′s and listened to top-40 or album oriented radio – you loved Bachman, Turner Overdrive – with Randy Bachman and company. Their rock music was catchy and infectuous with hits such as “Takin’ Care Of Business,” “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet” and “Let It Ride.” Simply great stuff. I loved these guys and we couldn’t wait for their greatest hits to be released.

It finally came as Mercury records released “The Best Of BTO (So Far)” back in August of 1976. If you don’t have it, get it. Or download their hits. Don’t forget “Hey You” and “Roll On Down The Highway.”

BTW – The last single for BTO was from that same time – summer of 1976 with “Gimmie Your Money Please.” Not a big charter – but – just in case you wanted to know.

Gary West – www.mrpopculture.com

Bin Laden Gone – Let’s Go Back To The Week Of September 8, 2001 When It All Really Began. This Week In Pop History.

Week of September 8, 2001. Compiled by Gary West @www.mrpopculture.com

Some thirteen current and former Miami police officers are accused by U.S. authorities of shooting unarmed people and then conspiring to cover it up by planting evidence.

On Saturday Night Live – Christopher Walken and musical guest Weezer.

First Lady Laura Bush opens the first National Book Festival in Washington – hailing it as an “exciting chapter for American book lovers.”

The nation’s unemployment is up to a four-year high of 4.9%.

—————————————————————————

At 8:45am September 11 – American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston with 92 aboard crashes into the north tower of the World Trade Center in New York. The flight was supposed to terminate in Los Angeles.

At 9:08am – United Airlines Flight 175 – which was supposed to be heading to Los Angeles from Boston – crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center. News reports now speculate it could be a terrorist attack.

At 9:41am – American Airlines Flight 77, which took off from Dulles International Airport – also heading towards Los Angeles takes the original flight path, but somewhere past Pittsburgh, PA, begins to head back east and crashes into the Pentagon at 9:41am. 64 people were on board.

As millions watch on television – people from both towers jump from their floors to doom. Both towers eventually collapse and thousands are feared dead in the worst-ever attack on U.S. soil.

At 10:00am – Flight 93 which originated from Newark NJ and was headed to San  Francisco with 45 people on board, turns back east – past Pittsburgh PA, and crashes. Apparently – passengers were on to the hijackers and helped bring the plane down.

President Bush vows that Americans will respond with a “quiet unyielding anger” to the terrorist attacks on the nation. He pledged to retaliate against not just the masterminds, but also the foreign nations that harbor them.

Attacks – U.S. intelligence agencies say evidence “strongly points” to the network of cells run by terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden and headquartered in Afghanistan.

President Bush declares that the terrorist attacks in Washington and New York were “acts of war” and vows that the U.S. “will use all our resources to conquer this enemy.”

President Bush warned Americans of a long, hard war against terrorism. The Defense Department recommends the mobilization of thousands of reservists and orders an aircraft carrier battle group to remain near the Arabian Sea.

The Federal Aviation Administration has temporarily banned mail and cargo from all passenger flights. Mail will have to be delivered from the ground and the post office is scrambling.

U.S. stock markets will remain closed until at least Monday – the longest break in trading since before WWII. But, just before the terrorist events, the stock market was off some 17.3% from the beginning of the year.

By the end of the week – the skies are eerily silent as there is nothing flying – commercial or private. Everything’s grounded.

Technology – (just before 9/11) – another .com bites the dust as wine.com says goodbye.

Sports –

Shut Down – Baseball and football as The NFL and MLB call off all games this week because of the terrorist attacks.

Music news –

Another KROQ (Los Angeles) DJ is on MTV – his name is Ted Ramone (Stryker). He’ll be hosting an MTV game show called “Who Knows the Band.” He follows former KROQ DJ’s Kennedy and Carson Daley into bigger exposure.

Earlier in the week – A Michael Jackson comeback concern at Madison Square Garden and later – a big party for Jackson on Tavern on the Green.  Jackson was seen escorting his friend Elizabeth Taylor to her seat. He reunited with his brothers and it was one heck of a concert.

Needless to say – all concerts are put on hold, including Madonna’s “Drowned World Tour.”

Entertainment news –

Warner Brothers announces it will postpone indefinitely the October 5 release of “Collateral Damage” starring Arnold Schwarzenegger because it’s terrorism themed.

Television news

Oprah Winfrey’s season kickoff will focus on “Dr Phil’s Get Real Challenge,” a five-day seminar conducted by life strategist Dr. Phil McGaw, who is a frequent guest on Winfrey’s program.

ABC and CBS announce plans to broadcast all of this season’s prime-time dramas and comedies in high-def. So far – well under a half million homes have HDTV access. . Separately – so far, some 200 of the 1,600 U.S. TV stations have begun digital broadcasting since the transition from analog to digital began in 1997, when the federal government gave each station up to five years to launch a digital channel.

At the movies –

The Musketeer

Two Can Play That game

Jeepers Creepers

Rock star

The Others

Rush Hour 2

American Pie 2

Rat Race

The Princess Diaries

This Week In History… A Complete Look At The Week Of January 8, 2011.

From The www.mrpopculture and www.mrpophistory week-by-week sites. A complete look at the week of January 8, 2011 in news, trends and pop culture…

Week of January 8, 2011

TUCSON, Ariz. – Rep. Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona was shot in the head Saturday when an assailant opened fire outside a grocery store during a meeting with constituents, killing at least five people and wounding several others in a rampage that rattled the nation. Giffords was among at least 10 people wounded, and the hospital said her outlook was “optimistic” and that she was responding to commands from doctors despite having a bullet go through her head. The hospital said a 9-year-old child was among the dead, and a U.S. Marshal said a federal judge was also fatally shot in the attack.

Mexico’s drug violence -, 27 people killed in less than a day, including 14 men whose bodies were found with their heads chopped off at a shopping center. Acapulco has seen fierce turf wars between drug gangs, and the bloodshed is scaring some vacationers away even though little of the violence happens in tourist areas. The 14 headless bodies, and a 15th intact corpse, were found by police on a street outside a shopping center accompanied by written warnings from a drug cartel, authorities said.

Doctors said Monday that Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ brain remains swollen, but the pressure isn’t increasing — a good sign for the congresswoman’s recovery. Neurosurgeon Dr. Michael Lemole of Tucson’s University Medical Center said Giffords’ condition two days after surgery for a gunshot wound to the head remains stable. He said that swelling from such an injury typically peaks around the third day, so doctors “can breathe a collective sigh of relief” after that.

A 22-year-old man described as a social outcast with wild beliefs steeped in mistrust faces a federal court hearing Monday on charges he tried to assassinate Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in a Tucson shooting rampage that left six people dead. A military official in Washington said Jared Loughner was rejected from the Army in 2008 because he failed a drug test. The official spoke Monday on condition of anonymity because privacy laws prevent the military from disclosing such information about an individual’s application.

President Barack Obama has presided over a national moment of silence for severely injured Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the people who were killed during an assassination attempt against her. On the White House South Lawn, Obama was joined by first lady Michelle Obama and White House staff members on a cold morning. The moment was marked at the U.S. Capitol and elsewhere around a nation still coming to grips with the tragedy.

For weeks, the flooding in eastern Australia has been a slow-motion disaster, with drenching rain devastating wide swaths of farmland and small towns. Now, rivers are rising in Brisbane, the country’s third-largest city, forcing people to flee both suburbs and skyscrapers.

Flooding that has unfolded since late November across the waterlogged state of Queensland turned suddenly violent Monday, with a cloudburst sending a raging torrent down the Lockyer Valley west of Brisbane. Hundreds had to be rescued by helicopter Tuesday.

Democratic Illinois lawmakers beat a looming deadline and approved a 66 percent income tax increase in a desperate bid to end the state’s crippling budget crisis. Legislative leaders rushed early Wednesday to pass the politically risky plan before a new General Assembly was sworn in at noon, taking a slice out of the Democratic majority and removing lame-duck lawmakers willing to support the tax before leaving office.

The second major snow storm of the winter season pelted the Northeast with about 8 inches of snow on Wednesday, snarling traffic and canceling flights, but it was not enough to suspend school in New York City. The National Weather Service reported snow on the ground in 49 of the 50 states — only Florida was spared — and much of the South was still battling icy conditions that made roads dangerous and led to several traffic deaths.

A Las Vegas judge has spared senior ACORN executive Amy Adele Busefink jail time for her role in a notorious voter fraud conspiracy. Judge Donald Mosley sentenced Busefink to two years imprisonment but suspended the jail time provided that she abides by the terms of her probation. She was also fined a total of $4,000 and ordered to perform 100 hours of community service. Prosecutors had argued for a fine of just $1,000. Voter fraud, sometimes called electoral fraud, is a blanket term encompassing a host of election-related improprieties.

Brazil’s Worst-Ever disaster – Summer rains sent tons of red mud and torrents of water rushing down mountainsides in towns outside Rio, enveloping homes of rich and poor alike and killing at least 500 people. Some survivors clung to trees to escape the water and landslides. Rescuers used heavy machinery, shovels and bare hands to dig through debris in a search for survivors Wednesday. It was not immediately clear how many people were rescued. At least 50 remained missing, and officials feared that figure would rise.

TUCSON, Ariz. – President Obama exhorted Americans to refrain from partisan bickering and urged the country to embrace the idealistic vision of democracy held by 9-year-old Christina Taylor Green, the youngest Arizona shooting victim and an aspiring politician who is set to be buried Thursday in the first of half-a-dozen funerals. Speaking to an arena audience of about 14,000 and even more in a nearby football stadium and at homes across the country, Obama drew on themes of unity, patriotism and heroism as he tried to help the nation make sense of a tragedy that unfolded as citizens were exercising their most basic of rights, meeting with their congresswoman.

Steven Vego heard a pop in the rear of his Southern California home and went outside to investigate. His son and wife followed in what turned out to be a tragic decision. The three were electrocuted Friday, one after the other as the wife and son attempted rescues, each coming in contact with a 12,000-volt power line that had fallen over in their backyard, authorities said. San Bernardino firefighters arrived to find the three bodies, but it was too dangerous to free them, fire spokesman Jason Serrano said. A utility company finally cut the power.

Serving as California governor cost Arnold Schwarzenegger at least $200 million, the bodybuilding star turned actor and politician told a newspaper in his native Austria, insisting ‘it was more than worth it.” Counting expenses and lost income from acting in Hollywood films, “in all it is probably more than $200 million,” he told Krone when asked how much his two terms in Sacramento had cost.

Sports – Auburn’s first BCS Championship and the second college football national championship in school history came down to a simple twist of fate. Michael Dyer’s spinning, twisting recovery from an apparent tackle produced a game-changing 37-yard run late in the fourth quarter, and then he made an almost identical play to give the Tigers the ball inside the 1-yard line and set up Wes Bynum’s 19-yard field goal as time expired, giving Auburn a thrilling 22-19 victory over Oregon in the BCS Championship Game on Monday at University of Phoenix Stadium.

NFL Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor avoided jail on Thursday by pleading guilty to two misdemeanor charges stemming from his May arrest on rape and prostitution charges. The former New York Giants great will serve six years probation as part of the agreement, which saw him plead guilty to sexual misconduct and patronizing a prostitute. He will have to register as a sex offender. In court, Taylor admitted to having sex with a prostitute who ended up being a 16-year-old runaway. “She told me she was 19,” he said.

Technology –

Motorola Mobility’s Xoom tablet computer powered by new “Honeycomb” software from Google was crowned the best gadget at the giant Consumer Electronics Show (CES) on Saturday. Along with being declared the top creation at the dazzling gadget extravaganza, Xoom was also honored as the best of the scores of tablets introduced here as fresh competitors in a market dominated by Apple IPads.

Verizon Wireless, the top U.S. mobile provider, plans on Tuesday to unveil a version of the Apple iPhone for its service and will kick off sales of the device a few weeks later, a source told Reuters. Verizon Wireless will offer the iPhone to its customers under its existing wireless service price plans, said the source, who asked not to be named as the plan has not yet been announced.

News Corp’s MySpace is laying off nearly half its staff, setting the stage for a sale of the former Internet social networking leader as is it refocuses as an entertainment site. The restructuring affects about 500 employees, or 47 percent of the company, and comes after weeks of speculation on technology blogs about the cuts.

iPad will soon have a Paper feature to be announced by Steve Jobs and Rupert Murdoch. The two men will make the announcement later this month. Jobs and Murdoch will appear together at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, at a launch event, rumoured to be scheduled for January 19. Murdoch has called his iPad newspaper his “number one most exciting project” in recent months, with the paper set to have a core full-time editorial staff based out of offices in New York and Los Angeles.

The child-abduction alert system used by law enforcement, broadcasters and transportation departments is now available on Facebook. AMBER Alerts have previously been available to many users via their local law enforcement Facebook pages. But now, Facebook users can receive the announcements directly from state AMBER Alert pages, by choosing which state’s alerts they want to see. The District of Columbia and the U.S. Territories also each have an alert page.

Verizon Wireless said it will begin selling Apple’s iPhone early next month, ending AT&T’s four-year run as the phone’s exclusive carrier. ” Existing Verizon customers will be able to pre-order the phone beginning Feb. 3. The phone will launch in Apple and Verizon stores online on Feb. 10, according to Verizon Wireless CEO Dan Mead. Verizon customers eligible for “new every two” upgrades will be able to use those upgrade credits toward an iPhone.

New Facebook Profiles…  Starting (January 13) all accounts will be upgraded to the new profile. The new Facebook profiles feature a revamped interface, as well as easy access to photos of the user. The profiles also offer more details about work and education information, while letting users put friends into distinct categories, list various interests, and fill out a nifty new “about me” user summary.

Computer history for $400? An IBM computer won the practice round on popular TV quiz show Jeopardy! against two top contestants, showing artificial intelligence has come a long way in simulating how humans think. “We have created a computer system which has the ability to understand natural human language, which is a very difficult thing for a computer to do,” said John Kelly, the director of IBM Research. The emotion was left to the audience as Watson, the contestant, beat out two of Jeopardy’s most winningest champions, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter, by $1,000.  The machine, named Watson after legendary International Business Machines Machines president Thomas Watson, is a showcase of the company’s computing expertise and research in advanced science.

Entertainment news –

Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian have been sued for $75 million in debit card damages — and they didn’t even slap down the plastic themselves. The sisters, along with mom Kris Jenner, are being sued by The Revenue Resource Group for breach of contract after they pulled out of promotional duties stemming from the launch of their branded prepaid debit card.

Another Awards Show! – MTV Comedy Central have announced The Comedy Awards, an event honoring the industry’s top writers, directors, actors and stand-up comedians.

“This historic, one-night-only celebration will honor [those] who provided the laugh track to our lives this past year: the pioneers who pushed boundaries; the TV shows that we rushed home for; the movies that are etched into our collective pop-culture memory; the stand-up comedians and the viral videos that make us laugh every day.”

Oscar-winning actor Michael Douglas, who revealed in August that he had throat cancer, said on Monday that his tumor is gone and chances are good he has beaten cancer. In an interview with U.S. morning news and talk show “Today,” Douglas told co-host Matt Lauer, “I feel good, relieved.

The Ohio homeless man whose smooth broadcaster voice made him an Internet sensation was questioned by police after he and his daughter got into a heated argument at a hotel during a trip to Hollywood to appear on “Dr. Phil” and “Entertainment Tonight.” “I don’t know how loud they were,” Officer Catherine Massey said, but the argument around 9 p.m. Monday at the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel & Spa led to a disturbance report. “It was minor. Both parties were angry but there were no signs of visible abuse,” Massey said Tuesday. She said Ted Williams and his daughter “were brought in, calmed down, talked to and released” and she did not know the nature of the argument.

Pop singer Shakira and her boyfriend of almost 11 years, Antonio de la Rue, have split, the singer announced on her blog. “Since August 2010, we made a mutual decision to take time apart from our romantic relationship. Throughout this time we have continued to work together hand in hand, have remained close and have kept the details absolutely private until now,” she wrote.

Dr Drew gets a daytime TV talker – with a new daily, half-hour CW show. The program — slated to air next fall — will focus on people dealing with conflicts in their lives, including relationship and addiction issues. Pinsky and a panel of experts — ranging from celebrities to people in the medical field — will attempt to help the show’s guests with their problems.

Justin Bieber (16) will return to CSI for an upcoming episode, CBS announced Tuesday.  Bieber will reprise the role of Jason McCann, a troubled boy whose brother was killed in the Season 11 premiere. Jason returns when he calls Nick (George Eads)) to alert him that he’s in imminent danger.

Conan O’Brien says he got a phone call from David Letterman over the holidays. The CBS host wanted to make sure a year of late-night TV turmoil hadn’t created a rift between them. O’Brien told reporters Wednesday that he and Letterman have “always been good. I said he didn’t owe me a phone call, but I appreciated it.” O’Brien wouldn’t be so receptive to a call from Jay Leno, who preceded and replaced him as “Tonight” show host. He says the reason is no mystery, noting, “We all know the story.”

Passing – David Nelson, who starred on his parents’ popular television show “The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet,” has died, a family spokesman said. He was 74. Nelson, who was battling complications of colon cancer, died Tuesday at his Los Angeles home, said family spokesman and longtime Hollywood publicist Dale Olson.

Actor Peter Fonda was part of a real-life mystery on Hollywood’s famed Sunset Boulevard on Wednesday. The Oscar-nominated actor (brother to Jane and son of the late Henry Fonda), 70, discovered a dead body inside a car parked on the famed street. Fonda found the deceased driver slumped over in the front seat and called 911.

Ted Williams, the 53-year-old former homeless man with the golden voice, is heading to rehab after having a one-on-one with Dr. Phil, the psychologist said in a statement. “If Ted is ever going to get better, he’s got to be honest with himself and admit he’s addicted to drugs and alcohol,” the statement said. Williams taped segments with his family members that will air Wednesday and Thursday. During the discussion, he admitted to drinking — an addiction he suffered in the past. The Brooklyn native began drinking and using drugs in 1996 and as a result, he lost his radio job and his home. Earlier this week, he said he’s been sober for two years.

King’s Speech” Golden Globe nominee Colin Firth now has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The British actor unveiled his sidewalk shrine Thursday in front of the Pig ‘N Whistle pub on Hollywood Boulevard. It’s the 2,429th star dedicated on the avenue of dreams.

Mark Harmon is America’s favorite TV star, according to a recent Harris Poll. Years after he played on St. Elsewhere and Chicago Hope, the 59-year-old NCIS star jumped seven spots from last year to beat out the reigning No. 1, Oprah Winfrey (who now ties at No. 2 with House’s Hugh Laurie).Of the 2,331 adults polled, more men said Harmon is their favorite, while women said Winfrey.

Paris Hilton’s life will be on display in a new Oxygen TV reality TV series. The cable channel said Thursday that “The World According to Paris” will debut this spring. An Oxygen executive described the series as “for real,” detailing the “highs” of the socialite turning 30 and her relationships.

Passing – John Dye, best known as the angel of death Andrew on “Touched By An Angel,” has died. He was 47. star Jesse Eisenberg will host the final Saturday Night Live of January, NBC announced Friday.

Music Passing – Trish Keenan, the lead singer of the British electronic pop music group Broadcast, has died, according to her record label. She was 42. She died from complications with pneumonia after battling the illness for two weeks in intensive care.

Following in the footsteps of Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce, Gwen Stefani has announced that she will be the next face of cosmetics giant L’Oreal Paris. “I can’t believe I get to be one of the L’Oreal Paris girls,” said the singer. “I love playing dress up, on stage or shooting videos, it’s always been one of my favorite parts of being in a band. And to get to work with such a modern, talented group of people is really exciting.”

Saturday Night Live – Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network),who’s nominated for a Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award for his portrayal of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, will host the Jan. 29 episode. He will be joined by musical guest Nicki Minaj.

Top Albums This Week In 2011:

Speak Now – Taylor Swift

Tron: Legacy Soundtrack

Pink Friday – Nicki Minaj

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

Loud – Rihanna

Recovery – Eminem

My Beautiful Dark Twisted Father – Kanye West

Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

My Kinda Party – Jason Aldean

Teenage Dream – Katy Perry

Country Strong Soundtrack

A Merry Little Christmas – Lady Antebellum

Love Letter – R. Kelly

The Beginning – The Black Eyed Peas

Brothers – The Black Keys

Born Free – Kid Rock

Need You Know – Lady Antebellum

Best Night Of My Life – Jamie Foxx

No Mercy – T.J.

Greatest Hits So Far!!! – P!nk

Glee, The Music: Season Two

Calling All Hearts – Keyshia Cole

Michael – Michael Jackson

No Boys Allowed – Keri Hilson

I Am Not A Human Being – Lil Wayne

Lungs – Florence + The Machine

At the movies –

True Grit

Little Fockers

Season of the Witch (1st week $10.6 million)

TRON: Legacy

Black Swan

Country Strong

The Fighter

Yogi Bear

The King’s Speech

Tangled

The Chronicles of Narmia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Gulliver’s Travels

Top TV Shows –

1. NFL Playoff Game 2: Jets at Indianapolis NBC
2. NFL Playoff Bridge (between Games 1 and 2) NBC
3. NFL Playoff Prekick (Game 2) NBC
4. NFL Wildcard Post-Game (Sunday) FOX
5. Two and a Half Men CBS
6. The Mentalist CBS
7. CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS
8. The Big Bang Theory CBS
9. Desperate Housewives ABC
10. The Simpsons FOX
11. Mike & Molly CBS
12. CSI: Miami CBS
13. Modern Family ABC
14. Undercover Boss CBS
15. Wipeout ABC
16. Grey’s Anatomy ABC
17. Hawaii Five-O CBS
18. (Bleep) My Dad Says CBS
19. Law & Order: SVU NBC
20. 60 Minutes

This Week In History as compiled by Gary West of www.mrpopculture.com and www.mrpophistory.com.

Mr. Pop Culture Report – New Facebook Profiles Begin… Another “Awards” Ceremony – The Media Already Has A Ton Of Them… Dr Phil Is Capitalizing On That (Once) Homeless Radio Announcer… Top Albums This Week In Pop History… This Radio Talent Doesn’t Dig The Ted Williams Hoopla… Oh, And – There Are Now (Two) Ted Williams’ In Pop Culture History. Remember The Other One?

The Game Is On As New Facebook Profiles… Starting (January 13) all accounts will be upgraded to the new profile. The new Facebook profiles feature a revamped interface, as well as easy access to photos of the user. The profiles also offer more details about work and education information, while letting users put friends into distinct categories, list various interests, and fill out a nifty new “about me” user summary.

Another Awards Show! – MTV Comedy Central have announced The Comedy Awards, an event honoring the industry’s top writers, directors, actors and stand-up comedians. “This historic, one-night-only celebration will honor [those] who provided the laugh track to our lives this past year: the pioneers who pushed boundaries; the TV shows that we rushed home for; the movies that are etched into our collective pop-culture memory; the stand-up comedians and the viral videos that make us laugh every day.”

Ted Williams, the 53-year-old former homeless man with the golden voice, is heading to rehab after having a one-on-one with Dr. Phil, the psychologist said in a statement. “If Ted is ever going to get better, he’s got to be honest with himself and admit he’s addicted to drugs and alcohol,” the statement said. Williams taped segments with his family members that will air Wednesday and Thursday. During the discussion, he admitted to drinking — an addiction he suffered in the past. The Brooklyn native began drinking and using drugs in 1996 and as a result, he lost his radio job and his home. Earlier this week, he said he’s been sober for two years.

Top Albums This Week In 2011:

Speak Now – Taylor Swift

Tron: Legacy Soundtrack

Pink Friday – Nicki Minaj

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

Loud – Rihanna

Recovery – Eminem

Dan Ingram, legendary NY Voice Over and DJ,  Doesn’t Dig The Ted Williams Stuff… A letter to the Ken Levine Blog:

I feel used and conned by all the sob-sister P.R. crap about the poor scab VO guy who is selling his rather resonant voice because he’s an ex junkie and an ex lush. I know at least fifty thoroughly qualified VO men and women who have never been hooked on drugs or anything else who are having difficulty making a living wage doing VO work as honorable Union members. They all know from their endeavors how fickle, thoughtless and downright cruel the VO business can be. I know that I do, especially lately.

I wish him success when he hits the bricks like the rest of us. And success under a Union contract.

In solidarity,
Dan Ingram

Speaking of Ted Williams, here’s a picture of the other one – the baseball legend!

Gary West – www.mrpopculture.com  or if you prefer   www.mrpophistory.com