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Rob Gilmore

Dancing with the Stars: Season 16 Cast Desperate For Attention

ABC Announces ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Season 16 Cast

We all know that ending up on Dancing with the Stars is the last nail in the coffin of fame, so let’s see what careers are ending with this year’s season.  The announcement was made exclusively on Good Morning America, and the headliners include music legend Wyonna Judd, former “Idol” finalist Kellie Pickler, reality TV star Lisa Vanderpump and NFL star Jacoby Jones, according to ABC News.

“This is something I said I would never do, said Wyonna Judd to ABC News, “They’ve asked me for six years.  I’m trying to get back to my original weight of 8 lbs, 15 oz. because it’s the year of doing things that you’re scared of.” 

Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman, professional boxer Victor Ortiz, and figure skating legend Dorothy Hamill will also appear on the program. 

In case you didn’t recognize many of this season’s names, here’s a run-down.  Raisman became a household name as part of the “Fierce Five” at last year’s Summer Olympics in London, where she took home a gold medal for her performance.  Professional boxer Victor Ortiz is a former welterweight champion, and Dorothy Hamill is best known for winning the 1976 Olympic gold medal in figure skating.    

Comedians Andy Dick and D.L. Hughley, “General Hospital” star Ingo Rademacher and Disney star Zendaya Coleman are some of the biggest stars in the lineup.  Actor, producer, director and musician, Andy Dick, fronts his own comedy band and is known for appearing in a number of Hollywood blockbusters. 

D.L. Hughley rose to fame on the much-loved sitcom, “The Hughleys,” and later became a television personality and political pundit.  Ingo Rademacher is best known for his longtime role as Jasper on General Hospital, and Zendaya Coleman was an actress, singer and dancer on Disney’s hit show, “Shake It Up.” 

The new season premieres with a two-hour episode Monday, March 18 at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on ABC.  The couple with the lowest combined scores and public votes for their performances will be sent home.

Robin Roberts Returns to GMA, after Six Months Fighting Rare Blood Condition

Robin Roberts, popular morning news anchor, is returning to ABC News

Robin Roberts, the popular morning news anchor for ABC’s Good Morning America, is back to work and all smiles, after spending six months in recovery after receiving a life-saving bone marrow transplant from her sister.  The President and First Lady both took time to welcome back Robin Roberts in a taped message aired just after 7 a.m. last Wednesday morning. 

ABC began the inaugural episode with a tight closeup of Roberts, who said, “I have been waiting 174 days to say this: ‘Good Morning America.’”  Roberts had not hosted an episode of GMA since Aug. 30, when she left to begin treatment for MDS, according to The Huffington Post.  MDS is a rare bone marrow disease that she contracted as a result of her successful fight against cancer. 

The speed of Robin’s recovery is, by no means, certain and her continued recovery is contingent upon how well her newly revamped immune system copes with the outside world.  GMA is the no. 1 morning news program in the country, a title it only recently won from NBC, and much of the show’s success has been attributed to Robin Roberts. 

In her absence, GMA held onto the top spot, but ABC isn’t taking its good fortune for granted.  ABC aired a video that showed all GMA employees getting flu shots and their set, dressing rooms and offices being cleaned thoroughly to lessen the likelihood that Roberts contracts an infection. 

Obama said he’s happy Roberts is “back doing what you do best,” according to the Daily News.  Mrs. Obama added that she is “looking forward” to a sit down interview with Roberts Friday. 

Roberts’s procedure and recovery are followed by an unusually grueling work schedule over the next couple weeks.  The popular news anchor taped an interview with the First Lady Friday. 

Robert’s doctors also appeared on the program, warning that they will not permit her to work if she is not feeling well.  “I don’t care who the interview is with,” one of her doctor’s said. “If you’re not well enough, you’re not going.” 

Surgeon General, C. Everett Koop, Dies at 96

America’s Most Popular Doctor Dies Peacefully at 96

Top doc of the United States and famous for that goofy beard, Dr. C. Everett Koop, widely regarded as the most influential Surgeon General in American history, died Monday at his home in Hanover, N.H., according to the New York Times.  He made it to 96, thanks, presumably in part, to not smoking. 

Koop, who served as Surgeon General from 1981 until 1989, is widely known for his fight against smoking.  He revived the traditional uniform of the Surgeon General and is most known for speaking in public against the dangers of smoking cigarettes. 

At the time of his appointment by Ronald Reagan, 33 percent of Americans smoked cigarettes.  By the time of his departure, that number had dropped to 26 percent, according to the New York Times.  By 1987, 40 states had restricted smoking in public places, 33 had banned it on public conveyances and 17 had banned it in offices and other work sites. 

“Smokers are 10 times more likely to develop lung cancer than nonsmokers, two times more likely to develop heart disease.  Smoking a pack a day takes six years off a person’s life,” he once said. 

Dr. Koop was also known for pushing the government to take a stronger stand against AIDS, a position that gained him criticism from his fellow Christians and conservatives.  Despite his moral opposition to abortion, he refused to use his office to fight against it.

Dr. Koop played a major role in educating the American people about AIDS.  Though he felt the United States had been slow to face the crisis, he was happy when HIV, the virus that causes AIDS was discovered and when a blood test was developed to detect the disease, according to the New York Times. 

His greatest failure, in his eyes, was not convincing President Reagan or his successor, President Bush, in making healthcare available to more Americans. 

Funeral arrangements are planned for 10:30 a.m. March 9 at the First Congregational Church in Woodstock, NH.
 

Elisa Lam Body Found in Hotel Water Tank

Foul Play Suspected after Body of Missing Woman Found in Hotel Water Tank

The Body of Elisa Lam was found Tuesday inside the water tank of an historic downtown Los Angeles hotel, according to CBS News.  Health officials immediately issued a do-not-drink order, fearing fecal contamination of Cecil Hotel’s water supply.

Though contamination is unlikely, said officials, hotel staff and guests should exercise extreme caution.  The Cecil Hotel relocated guests in 27 rooms to a different hotel Wednesday, but 11 rooms remained filled.  Guests in those rooms were required to sign a waiver acknowledging that they were aware of the health risks and were provided bottled water for drinking.

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health is analyzing the water, according to Terrance Powell, a director coordinating the department’s response.  The announcement contradicts a previous statement that the water is safe, according to CBS News.  Results of the testing are expected to be released early Thursday.

Water for the Cecil Hotel is stored in four tanks on the roof of the hotel.  Lam’s body was discovered in one of those four tanks, according to CBS News.

“Our biggest concern is going to be fecal contamination because of the body in the water,” Powell said.  The water is used regularly for cooking, cleaning and providing water to hotel guests.  A coffee shop in the hotel will remain closed and was told to sanitize its equipment before reopening.

The LAPD is calling Lam’s death suspicious, and the coroner will determine her cause of death after an autopsy.  A maintenance worker originally found Lam’s body after hotel guests complained of low water pressure. 

Before she died, Lam was spotted on video surveillance inside an elevator, frantically pushing buttons, and sticking her head out the doors at each floor, as she looked in both directions.  There are no video cameras on the roof of the hotel, so hotel staff are unsure how she got there.  She was later found in the water tank. 

The hotel has four water tanks on its roof; each is 4 feet tall, 4.5 feet wide and holds at least 1,000 gallons of water pumped up from city pipes, according to CBS News.  Lam’s body was found Tuesday morning in one of those water tanks.  It was three quarters full of water.
 

Apple Attacked: Hackers's Next Victim in Wave of Security Breaches

Hackers Access Apple Computers by Java Security Breach

If any company knows how to handle hackers, it’s Apple, the latest victim of a network breach, as confirmed by ABC News this afternoon. 

Similar to how Facebook was attacked last month, a small number of employee computers were attacked.  No sensitive data left the network.

“Apple has identified malware which infected a limited number of Mac systems through vulnerability in the Java plug-in for browsers,” Apple said in a statement. “The malware was employed in an attack against Apple and other companies, and was spread through a website for software developers.”

No data was stolen, according to a report by ABC News.  Much like the Facebook case last month, hackers were only able to access a small number of Apple employee’s computers.  Apple isolated them from its network.

Both attacks used the same vulnerability in Java, the software used to show much content on the internet, according to ABC News.  The Department of Homeland Security released a warning last month to computer users to disable the software in their browsers.

“To protect Mac users who have installed Java, today we are releasing an updated Java malware removal tool that will check Mac systems and remove this malware if found,” Apple said today.

Apple computers do not come with Java installed.  If an Apple user does not activate the software within 35 days, Apple’s operating system will disable the software. 

Facebook also reported Friday that it was “targeted in a sophisticated attack,” according to ABC News.  Facebook said that there was no evidence that user information was stolen, as if our Facebook data isn’t free for the whole world to steal anyways!

With so many security breaches over the past few months, be sure to stay safe on the vast swaths of the internet, people.  Keep your software up to date, including your operating systems, programs and virus software.  And pay attention to technology news, so that you remain aware of any future security breaches.

Rumors Swirl: Xbox 720 Announcement Soon

With Rumors Swirling, Xbox 720 Announcement Imminent

Techies from coast-to-coast are going to have a riot over this one.  Word on the street is that Microsoft will be releasing the next version of its popular Xbox line, the Xbox 720, around Christmas 2013, with an announcement as early as June.  With so many rumors swirling about this hotly anticipated new product, here’s a run down of the latest and juiciest new rumors.

Techradar is reporting that the new version of the Xbox will contain a revision of AMD’s 7000 series graphics, which is based on its 28nm Graphics Core Next (GCN) Southern Islands tech. 

Anonymous sources have said that the graphics arrangement will be like two PC’s taped together, according to Techradar.  The two GPUs in the Xbox 720 will not be structured as they are in a normal computer, according to the sources.  In any typical household computer, the chips work separately to perform different tasks simultaneously.  It’s possible that they could be used together to generate 3D images.  Each chip would generate different angles of a scene to produce the 3D effect.

Kotaku is also reporting that the new Xbox will allow users to play multiple games simultaneously, however that works.  The device will require game installation and will also require brand new controllers, due to improvements in wireless technology that make the old ones obsolete. 

Xbox World also reported that the Xbox 720 will feature a 16-core CPU, providing the device impressive power for 3D graphics rendering.  Rumors also speculate that the new version of the Xbox will fall behind the Play Station 4 on specs, with the PS4 featuring twice as much RAM. 

Kotaku also says that Microsoft may make an official announcement about the product this June, when Larry Hryb, the programming director for Xbox, is scheduled to deliver a presentation at this year’s E3.  Until then, rumors abound, folks.

What do you think the new Xbox will feature?  Post below!

Lil Wayne’s Fat Mouth: “I F–ked Chris Bosh’s Wife”

Lil Wayne Says He Had Sex with Chris Bosh’s Girlfriend

Lil’ Wayne is once again proving that he should restrict his lovely views on love, sports and politics to the confines of music lyrics.  The Daily News reports that during a performance in Houston last Sunday night, Weezy claims that he slept with the wife of Miami Heat player, Chris Bosh. 

F—k LeBron, f—k She-Wade, f—k Chris Bosh, f—k all of them ni—as, man,” Lil Wayne told the crowd, according to MTV.  Lil Wayne then gleefully added, “And, and, and I f—ked Chris Bosh’s wife.” 

The Daily News reports that Adrienne, Bosh’s girlfriend, later responded to Wayne’s comments by retweeting a few messages:

“Some people attack those who have the peace and joy they wish they had! Pay them no mind! Live your dream, strut and wave, said Gabrielle Union, who is sating Wade.

Weezy’s rant was likely inspired by an incident that took place last week when Lil Wayne claims that he was kicked out during a Heat-Lakers game in Miami. 

Reports state that he was thrown out after making a gun gesture at another fan during the game, a reaction that Weezy, an avid Lakers fan, clearly feels was unjustified.  He still blames the Heat for the incident.  Don’t count on the rapper growing up anytime soon. 

As if this reporter’s opinions of Weezy aren’t clear enough, what do you think of the popular rap artist?  Post your comments below!

Pucker-Up: Super-Gonorrhea Just in Time for Valentine’s Day

Super-Bug on its Way to USA

Watch out, kids.  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention is warning that Neisseria gonorrhoeae, the bacteria responsible for the sexually transmitted infection, gonorrhea, has become resistant to many antibiotics since the 1930s, according to ABC News.  The bacterium is baffling medical personal, as the disease continues to morph into what they have called multidrug- resistant gonorrhea. 
Lab studies have shown that cephalsporins, the current class of antibiotics to treat gonorrhea, have become increasingly ineffective at treating the disease in countries like Japan, France and Spain.  In 2011 two cases in which gonorrhea treatment failed among heterosexual men were reported in Norway, and a new resistant form of the bacteria was found from a female sex worker in Japan, according to the New York Times.
Gonorrhea is the second most common infectious disease in the United States. In 2011, more than 300,000 cases of gonorrhea were reported, according to ABC News.
If this trend continues, the CDC recently warned, the United States could see the emergence of the super-bug.  To help delay its arrival, the CDC has adjusted treatment guidelines for the disease.  They are now recommending that an injectable form of cephalosporin be combined with an oral antibiotic.
Dr. Lindsey Satterwhite, an epidemiologist in the CDC’s Division of STD Prevention, recommends safer sexual practices.  “Wear a condom correctly, think about abstinence, practice monogamy, and get appropriate screening if you’re at high risk,” she told an ABC News reporter.
These preventative measures are especially important for people between the ages 15-24, according to the CDC, because they are responsible for 50 percent of new STIs.  An estimated 20 million people are diagnosed each year in the U.S.; treating these infections costs U.S. healthcare companies nearly $16 billion in direct medical expenditures.
You heard it from the good doctor, folks.  What’s the best way to avoid contracting this dangerous- and quite costly- disease?  Keep the snake in his cage.

Cars for College Kids

Affordable Automobiles at the Chicago Auto Show

College students and recent graduates seldom think about buying new cars.  As if managing loads of homework, extracurricular activities and the mere semblance of a social life weren’t enough, buying a brand new car just doesn’t enter the college mind. 

What if someone told you that there were affordable new cars for college students? Sure, these commuter wagons aren’t going to get you 0-60 in four seconds flat.  Speeds in the triple digits might shake the tires off, and word is that the ladies aren’t impressed by a steel box on wheels.  But if you’re looking for a vehicle to get you around town, to and from classes and back and forth from your internship, there are affordable cars out there. 

The Chicago Auto Show, and car shows generally, can be thought of as big showrooms, designed to introduce buying customers to a brand’s latest and greatest automobiles.  A variety of interactive exhibits and activities keep kids and adults entertained, but there main purpose is to generate enthusiasm about the coming year’s newest cars. 

Take the Ford Focus, for example.  Ford is offering a $500 discount for college students or recent graduates. “Right now, the Focus has an automatic discount of $2,000, so that’s an additional $2,500 a college kid could got off the car,” said Bill Ozug, a Ford salesman for Lakeshore Motors, a Chicago-area Ford, Toyota and Scion dealership.

With a starting price at $16,200, the Ford Focus is well within the affordable range for a young person in college or recently graduated- and hopefully employed.  With an automatic transmission for an additional $1,095, its mileage rating is a respectable 26 mpg city and 36 highway.

“You can go in with a Ford with some decent features, but it’s going to price you in at the low 20s.  If you’re going to spend that kind of money, you might as well go with an entry level Civic,” said Nick Hanna, a Chicago-area Honda salesman.  The Civic starts at $17,965, with the automatic coming in at $18,765.  Standard features impressively include a rearview camera, Bluetooth HandsFreeLink and a USB audio interface.  A fully-loaded Civic will cost just over $25,000.

Cars weren’t the only cool feature on display at some automakers.  At Chrysler, visitors had the opportunity to take a ride in a Jeep of their choosing around a small course, a dirt road with a steep hill and a series of tightly packed bumps, meant to show off Jeep’s four wheeling muscle.  “The coolest part was going down the hill. She [the driver] didn’t put her foot on the break or anything, said Zach Drakert, an auto show patron from Kenosha.

If classic cars are more your thing, the Chicago Auto Show invited the Illinois Camaro Club, the oldest club of its kind in Illinois, to display five of their most prized cars, spanning decades of Chevy Camaro history.  “We wanted to choose cars that would catch your eye, want you to take pictures, want you to see, want you to ask questions, and that’s what we did, from a pro touring first generation to a reborn fifth generation that produces more than 600 horsepower,” said Rich Hanck, a member of the club. 

The first ever diesel-powered domestic vehicle was unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show.  Starting at just $26,995, which is great for a diesel car, the new Chevy Cruze Diesel produces a fuel economy rating of 42 mpg highway and 36 city.  “The car is environmentally friendly.  It has greater than 90% less nitrogen oxide emissions and it even produces 25% less emissions than a gasoline engine,” said Sara Holden, a Chevrolet product specialist. 

To withstand the rigors of high compression, diesel engines are built more ruggedly than gasoline engines, and as a result, tend to last much longer, sometimes even twice as long, according to Deanne Sclar, contributing author of Auto Repair for Dummies, 2nd Edition.  If you’re looking for a vehicle to last you upwards of a decade, without any major repairs before 300,000 miles, a diesel might just be your best bet.  The Chevy Cruze diesel will be available starting summer 2013. 

At this year’s Chicago Auto Show, the most popular foreign and domestic automakers are finally providing the financially strapped a few pretty attractive options.  But if a new car costing upwards of $15,000 is still breaking the bank, the used car market is always a reluctant last resort. 

Autotrader.com, Ebay, and Craigslist are great places to conduct your search.  Just be sure to do your research on the seller.  There’s nothing worse than dealing with someone who is unreliable or difficult to contact. 

And finally, be patient and persevere; your dream car will come to you.

Chris Dorner Posts Facebook Manifesto, then Kills Cop and Two Civilians

Accused Cop-Killer Chris Dorner Posted Facebook Manifesto before Rampage

It looks like Chris Dorner, former LAPD officer and accused cop killer, has joined the list of crazies who just can’t resist the urge to publish their deepest, creepiest thoughts in manifesto form. 

Chris Dorner is accused of killing one cop and two civilians, in a rampage that began Sunday, injuring two more officers along the way.  A former Los Angeles policeman and Navy reservist, Dorner posted an 11,000 word manifesto to his Facebook page before embarking on the rampage.  He blamed the LAPD for wrongfully firing him and promised to seek revenge on those responsible for his anguish. 

After first trying to steal a boat at a yacht club near San Diego and escape to Mexico, he abandoned the attempted theft after the propeller of the yacht got stuck in rope.  Police believe he then headed to Riverside, where he allegedly shot two police officers.

“[This is an] extremely tense situation,” Lopez said to an ABC News Reporter. “We call this a manhunt. We approach it cautiously because of the propensity of what has already happened.”

Dorner is accused of shooting two officers who were sitting in their patrol car at a red light.  He allegedly used a rifle to fire through their windshield, killing one officer and injuring the other.  The injured officer is expected to make a full recovery.

Police say Dorner shot at four officers overnight and hit three of them, one in Corona, Calif. and the two in Riverside.  In the manifesto published online, Dorner names 12 individuals, along wit their families.  The LAPD says that it has deployed 40 protective details to protect named officers and their families. 

The LAPD is using the manifesto posted to Facebook to predict some of Dorner’s next moves.  Dorner claims local law enforcement will have difficulty tracking him down because of his familiarity with police tactics. 

“The person we suspect of doing this is mobile, and with California’s interstate highway system, every hour that goes by that’s another 60 or 70 or 80 miles or greater circumference, it is a very wide net,” Chief of Police Sergio Diaz of the Riverside police department said to ABC News.