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Dateline: Week Of June 8, 2011 In News, Pop Culture, Tech News & Fascinating Facts

In The News -

Two Air Force Reserve cadets were taken to a hospital by ambulance and 75 others by bus after a lightning strike Wednesday at a southern Mississippi military training base, a spokeswoman said. Air Force Reserve cadets from around the country were at the Joint Forces Training Center for two weeks of work, said Army National Guard Maj. Deidre Musgrave. All were responsive and stable after the lightning hit about 2 p.m., she said. Forrest County emergency operations director Terry Steed told a National Weather Service forecaster that nobody was directly hit when lightning hit a power pole near tents. All were taken to hospitals as a precaution, said Mike Edmonston, a senior meteorologist in Jackson.

Arizona Brush Fire - Tucson's power company warned it may have to impose rolling blackouts if the giant fire in the eastern part of the state knocks out two big transmission lines that provide much of the city's energy supply. Tucson Electric said on its website the Wallow Fire in the White Mountains of eastern Arizona was threatening two 345-kilovolt (kV) lines and could reach the grasslands near its 1,200-megawatt Springerville coal-fired power plant. The growing fire, which has already forced the evacuation of several communities, is burning across more than 389,000 acres in a dense, mountainous, fuel-rich forest thick with ponderosa pine, aspen pine and Douglas fir. Tucson Electric does not expect its lattice steel transmission towers to burn, but noted thick, billowing smoke from the fire could create an alternate path for electric current and cause the lines to short circuit. Springerville is located in Apache County in eastern Arizona near the New Mexico border. The 1,643-megawatt San Juan coal-fired plant is located in San Juan County in northwest New Mexico across the border from Apache County in Arizona. It is operated by PNM Resources' Public Service Co of New Mexico unit.

More than 1,700 Syrians have fled to Turkey to escape a feared army crackdown, officials said on Thursday(June9), in another sign that President Bashar al-Assad's struggle with protesters is disturbing Syria's neighbors. With international concern growing over Syria's repression of pro-democracy protests, Britain, France, Germany and Portugal have asked the U.N. Security Council to condemn Assad. However, veto-holding Russia has said it opposes any such council measure. World powers have shown no appetite for any Libya-style military intervention in Syria, which has so far shrugged off sanctions and verbal reprimands.

Alabama's governor on Thursday signed a tough new illegal immigration crackdown that contains provisions requiring public schools to determine students' immigration status and making it a crime to knowingly give an illegal immigrant a ride. The bill also allows police to arrest anyone suspected of being an illegal immigrant if they're stopped for any other reason. Alabama employers also are now required to use a federal system called E-Verify to determine if new workers are in the country legally. The entire top echelon of Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign resigned on Thursday, a stunning mass exodus that left his bid for the Republican nomination in tatters. Rick Tyler, the former U.S. House speaker's spokesman, said that he, campaign manager Rob Johnson and senior strategists had all quit, along with aides in the early primary and caucus states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

A third day of unseasonable heat blistered the eastern half of the country Thursday, making tornado cleanup miserable in Massachusetts and sending country music fans in Tennessee to hospitals, while the surge in demand for energy knocked out power to sections of downtown Detroit. Cooling centers opened in Chicago, Memphis, Tenn., Newark, N.J., and other cities as a refuge for those without air conditioning. In New Jersey, records of 102 degrees were recorded at the Newark and Atlantic City airports, beating their respective previous records of 99 degrees and 98 degrees set in 2008. The temperature also reached 102 degrees at Ronald Reagan National Airport near Washington, matching a record set in 1874. Philadelphia hit 99 degrees, one degree higher than a record set in 1933.

President Obama says people need to be patient about the economic recovery and that training workers for manufacturing jobs will help with the turnaround. The recession didn't happen overnight and won't end that way, either, the president said Saturday in his weekly radio and online address. "It's going to take time," Obama said. Recent polling found broad disapproval with Obama's handling of the economy as the 2012 presidential election takes shape. It reached 59 percent in a Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Just hours after three leading Democrats called on him to resign, Rep. Anthony Weiner announced he will take a leave of absence from Congress and enter a treatment program.

nancy pelosi picture news june 2011Saturday began with a major blow to Weiner's chances for survival, as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Democratic National Committee chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Rep. Steve Israel, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, all issued statements urging Weiner to leave Congress.

More Arizona Brush Fire - More than 1,000 firefighters converged on this village in the Gila National Forest on Saturday as a massive wildfire that scorched eastern Arizona moved to a quarter mile from the New Mexico border. With the winds picking up, temperatures rising and humidity low, the National Weather Service issued a Red Flag Warning for this sparsely populated corner of the state, indicating grave fire danger. "Everything is ripe for a perfect storm," Fire Information Officer Sean Johnson told the press.

Passes - Prince Khalid bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the eldest child of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, has died, state media reported Saturday. He was 54.

London Slut Walk - Thousands of women took part in a so-called Slut Walk in London on Saturday, insisting that they should be able to wear as much or as little as they like without facing sexual harassment by men. The colourful march saw most people wearing everyday clothing but some wore provocative outfits as they marched on London's central Trafalgar Square. Slut Walk was first held in Toronto earlier this year after a police officer caused outrage by stating that "women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimised" during a speech to university students.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc has lost its appeal of most of a $187.6 million verdict for Pennsylvania hourly workers who accused the world's largest retailer of denying them meal and rest breaks. A three-judge panel of the Superior Court of Pennsylvania on Friday said there was sufficient evidence for Philadelphia jurors in 2006 to conclude that Wal-Mart's practices violated state wage and hour laws. It also said Wal-Mart's own internal review uncovered violations regarding "off-the-clock" work. The case was brought on behalf of about 187,000 current and former Wal-Mart workers in Pennsylvania from 1998 to 2006. They contended that the Bentonville, Arkansas-based company's engaged in improper practices to enhance productivity, boost profit and cut costs.

Republican President Contenders debate in New Hampshire with the likes of Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain and Tim Pawlenty. CNN’s John King moderated.

Sports News - June 8, 2011 -

NBA Champs – as the Dallas Mavericks defeat The Miami Heat in Game 6!

Tech News June 8, 2011 -

Facebook's computer systems will soon be able to recognize familiar faces. Facebook is making changes to the process for tagging friends in photos uploaded to the social network, the company announced on Tuesday. Starting in a few weeks, the system will scan all images posted to Facebook and suggest the names of people who appear in the frame. Last year, Facebook began rolling the facial-recogniton feature out to a test group. Facebook's more than 500 million users have been automatically included in the database, but the company is allowing each person to choose whether to be identified by toggling a pane in the account's privacy settings. The option is called "suggest photos of me to friends" within the "customize settings" page.

"Fruit Ninja," the simple but addictive mobile game that has lived among the top 10 iPhone apps (trailing only "Angry Birds" in popularity) since it debuted last spring is coming to Kinect, Microsoft's motion-control system for the Xbox. And these stealthy martial artists are launching an assault on "FarmVille" soon, too, with plans for Facebook app. The moves mark a new phase in the rise of social gaming, which has brought in millions of nontraditional gamers (i.e. younger, older and female players) via Facebook and mobile phones. Compare this crowd with traditional gamers who tend to play games on living room consoles such as the Xbox or PlayStation.

Facebook Users In U.S. Down - According to statistics from Inside Facebook Gold analytics service — which gets its information from Facebook’s advertising tool — new Facebook users totaled 11.8 million people in May — an impressive number by any stretch of the imagination. But that compares to the 13.9 million who joined in April, and an average of about 20 million in the 12 months prior. This drop is primarily due to a plunge in registered users in the US. The number of US Facebook users fell from 155.2 million to 149.4 million during the month of May alone. That’s nearly 6 million people who decided they no longer need to stay connected through the service, and is the first time Facebook has lost users in the last year. Worldwide – about 700 million are hooked-in to Facebook.

Entertainment News June 8, 2011 -

"Today" show co-anchor meredith viera leaves today show june 2011Meredith Vieira ended her five-year run hosting the popular morning show on Wednesday, and although it was her decision to leave, her exit was a little more emotional than she had expected.

Laurence Fishburne is leaving his starring role on TV forensic investigation drama "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" after a little more than two seasons, Hollywood publications reported on Wednesday. Fishburne, 49, who plays former pathologist Dr. Raymond Langston on the worldwide hit, has opted not to renew his contract when the show returns in September for its 12th season, said Deadline Hollywood and The Hollywood Reporter. The Emmy- and Tony award-winning actor joined the cast in the middle of the 2008-09 season as a replacement for original headliner William Peterson.

Passing – Leonard Stern producer, writer and director who helped create The Honeymooners died Tuesday of heart failure. He was 88. A New York native, Stern got his start in Hollywood in the '50s writing film screenplays, including Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion, The Jazz Singer and the Jack Lemmon film Three for the Show. His career shifted to TV, and he began writing for Jackie Gleason Show.Stern went on to help Gleason create The Honeymooners in 1955 and wrote 14 episodes for the classic sitcom. He created three more series: I’m Dickens… He’s Fenster, He & She and The Governor and J.J.

ja rule headed to prison photo image june 2011Ja Rule headed to prison Wednesday for up to two years in a gun case, bidding a stoic but upbeat farewell-for-now to family and fans at a New York courthouse. The multiplatinum-selling rapper and actor — whose gravelly voice, thuggish tough talk and duets with R&B divas made him one of rap's stars in the early 2000s — signed autographs for fans on his way to be sentenced. He pleaded guilty in December to attempted criminal weapon possession; the case stemmed from gun found in his luxury sports car in July 2007.

Nielsen says the final Oprah Winfrey show drew 16 million viewers

In 1965, The Beatles famously played Shea Stadium, but they never made it just one bridge over - from Queens to the Bronx and to the most famous baseball park in America - Yankee Stadium. All that is finally about to change. "You're on tour again, July 15th, Yankee Stadium," Access Hollywood's Billy Bush said to Sir Paul as the rock legend sat down to promote the fifth anniversary of The Beatles "Love" in Las Vegas and his new tour.

American Idol Season 5 runner-up Katharine McPhee has inked a new recording contract with Columbia Records. The contract comes as part of a deal between Columbia Records and NBC to release the soundtrack for McPhee's upcoming TV series, Smash. Set to premiere midseason on NBC, Smash is a drama that follows the making of a Broadway musical about Marilyn Monroe. McPhee appears in this, her first scripted series, as one of the musical's stars.

In the never-ending search for licensing opportunities to exploit, iconic southern rockers Lynyrd Skynyrd will serve as the theme of a new restaurant set to open this fall at the Excalibur Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.A full menu for Lynyrd Skynyrd BBQ & Beer has yet to revealed, but count on a generous helping of daily requests for "Freebird." The eatery's philosophy, according to a statement, "will quite simply be to rock the house. As guests walk in they will immediately be transported to a setting reminiscent of Hell House, the ram-shackled structure in the backwoods of Jacksonville (Fla.) where the Skynyrd sound originated."

ice t svu news june 2011Ice-T has signed a two-year deal to remain on Law & Order:SVU. "I've just locked in my new SVU deal," the rapper-actor tweeted Friday. "So I'll officially be back for the next 2 years at least. DONE."

Pop queen Lady Gaga concluded a huge European gay rights march in Rome on Saturday night with a rousing call to governments to defend gay rights. "Today and every day we fight for freedom. We fight for justice. We beckon for compassion, understanding and above all we want full equality now," she shouted to a crowd of several hundred thousand people at the Italian capital's ancient Circus Maximus.

Seriously Ill - Clarence Clemons,(69) the saxophone player in Bruce Springsteen’s's E Street Band, has suffered a stroke, according to a pair of media reports on Sunday.

Tony Awards - The current critical and commercial darling of Broadway, The Book of Mormon, unsurprisingly reigned supreme at Sunday night's Tony Awards, taking home nine trophies including Best Musical. Its creators, South Park’s Trey Parker and Matt Stone, as well as their collaborator, Avenue Q's Robert Lopez, snagged the honor for Best Book of a Musical.On the drama side, War Horse won Best Play among its five honors. The acclaimed redo of Larry Kramer's AIDS tale The Normal Heart won Best Revival of a Play, while Anything Goes was named Best Revival of a Musical.

Passing - Laura Ziskin, the producer behind the blockbuster Spider-Man films, Julia Roberts' star-making turn in Pretty Woman plus As Good As It Gets, Fight Club, No Way Out and other classics, died in her L.A. home on Sunday evening, a rep for Sony Pictures confirmed. She was 61 and died of breast cancer.

Top Music Albums - June 8, 2011 –

21 – Adele

Codes and Keys – Death Cab for Cutie

Ukulele Songs – Eddie Vedder

Born this Way – Lady Gaga

Circuital – My Morning Jacket

This Is Country Music – Brad Paisley

My Kinda Party – Jason Aldean

NOW 38

Speed of Darkness – Flogging Molly

Glee, The Music: Season Two

mumford sons news trivia music june 2011Sigh No More – Mumford & Sons

Lemonade Mouth – Soundtrack

Mayback Music Group Presents

Doo-Wops & Hooligans – Bruno Mars

Teenage Dreem – Katy Perry

Holding Onto Strings Better Left To Fray – Seether

Love? – Jennifer Lopez

Angel & Chanelle – Trin-i-tee 5:7

You Get What You Give – Zac Brown Band


Speak Now – Taylor Swift

Loud – Rihanna

Torches – Foster The People

Top TV Shows/listings/tv guide - June 8, 2011 –


NBA Finals: Dallas vs. Miami



NBA Finals: Miami vs. Dallas



America's Got Talent" (Tuesday)



NBA Finals: Dallas vs. Miami



The Voice






NCIS: Los Angeles



60 Minutes



The Mentalist



So You Think You Can Dance" (Wednesday)



So You Think You Can Dance" (Thursday)



CSI: Crime Scene Investigation



The Big Bang Theory



The Bachelorette



Criminal Minds



Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition






Blue Bloods" (Wednesday)






Rules of Engagement


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