Vladimir Putin admits he's a bit of a fibber:
Russian President Vladimir Putin told a Russian journalist that many of his most picturesque media appearances — shooting a tranquilizer dart into a tiger who appeared about to pounce; tagging a wounded snow leopard; and, just this week, wearing a feathery white suit to pilot a glider to guide a group of cranes south for the winter — were staged.
Politicians cozy up to Scientology:
Three U.S. congressmen and a top-level government official attended the opening of the Church of Scientology’s National Office in Washington, D.C., Thursday ... [Republican Congressman Dan Burton and Democratic Congressman Danny Davis] lauded the church’s efforts in pushing Congress to pass legislation targeted toward child medication and the criminal justice system. [Liz Gibson, Senior Program Manager at the Federal Emergency Management Agency] praised the disaster relief the Church of Scientology has provided in times of crisis.
Chicago CIA sting nets an 18-year-old, first-time jihadi.
Bill Saletan gives angry zealots a good talking-to.
US pulls personnel from Tunisia and Yemen.
The Obama administration expects this nonsense could go on for a while:
“The reality is the Middle East is going to be turbulent for the foreseeable future and beyond that,” said Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations and a former State Department official in the Bush administration. “It’s going to present the United States with any number of difficult choices. It’s also going to be frustrating, because in most instances our interests are likely to be greater than our influence.”
Don Philip really was "bullied" into coming out on the X Factor.
Royal boobies make the rounds.
Nathan Schaefer is named executive director of Empire State Pride Agenda; elucidates first priority:
With an album coming out next week, Aimee Mann talks about the state of the arts.
“We must pass the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act,” or GENDA, he said in a video message posted on the Pride Agenda’s website at the time his appointment was announced on September 15. “That’s our next victory.” He noted that polls have shown that more than three-quarters of New Yorkers support the principles underlying GENDA.
... Schaefer most recently served as the director of public policy at the Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), the city’s oldest and largest AIDS services and advocacy group. He also worked in Washington for the AIDS Alliance for Children, Youth, and Families, a group established in 1994 that does both advocacy and partnership-building work.
Jamie Kuntz, North Dakota Football Player Kicked Off Team for Being Gay, Talks About Life Since Being Outed: VIDEO
Earlier this week I posted about Jamie Kuntz, a North Dakota college football player who was kicked off his team after teammates saw him kissing his boyfriend in a press box at an away game.
Kuntz sits down with SB Nation's Amy K. Nelson for his first on-camera interview to talk about the incident and what his life has been like since he was outed. Nelson also talks to his mom, the school's athletic director Stu Engen, people in Jamie's town, and some of his teammates.
Many of them are frustrated, upset with what they perceive as an attack on the school, and an unfair labeling of it as a homophobic place.
'I'm friends with Jamie,' said Trevon Money, a defensive end, "but you came here to play football. You didn't come here to do other things in the crowd." Spending 48 hours in the middle of a political, emotional and media firestorm, I got a glimpse into what happens when an athlete is outed in small-town North Dakota, and how not only the community reacts, but how the world watches.
Watch Nelson's excellent piece, AFTER THE JUMP...
Since Innocence of Muslims improbably became the most talked-about film in the world, Roberts has understandably been "laying low."
Until the release of Innocence of Muslims, the 65-year-old Roberts has had an unremarkable career as a small-time director and editor. His directing credits include some softcore porn from the 70s and 80s like 1977's Young Lady Chatterly, The Sexpert and The Happy Hooker Goes to Hollywood, third of the Happy Hooker trilogy. (It's probably no coincidence that the cast included at least two porn stars, or that Innocence of Muslims contains a graphic scene of Muhammed performing oral sex on a woman.) Roberts tried to break into action in 1991 with Karate Cop: "John Travis is the last honest cop in a future dominated by terroristic martial-arts gangs who fight gladiator-style in arenas."
Roberts is more accomplished as a film editor, with 28 editing credits, including the 2003 Johnny Knoxville/Christina Applegate vehicle Grand Theft Parsons. In the mid-2000s, he ran a digital post-production facility called Genesis Post-Production according to a press release for a documentary about Burning Man where he's credited as producer.
Perhaps you don't need to hear another version of Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" again, but do. Just one more. AFTER THE JUMP, find a gorgeous, and -- maybe this is just me -- somehow melancholic, fully orchestral, end-of-summer take on the season's infectingest, saccharinest hit.
From the NY Daily News:
Colin Britt and Arianne Abela arranged a full-on orchestral rendition of the song replete with glockenspiels, violas and violins.
"Like everyone, I have heard this song a lot for the entire summer," Britt told the Daily News. "And I, like everyone—whether they want to admit it or not—have the guilty pleasure of enjoying it."
Britt got an idea to record a version from the string riff that appears during each chorus ... The arrangers sent invitations to classically trained musicians near New Haven, Conn. to perform a pop song, but didn't tell them the specific song until they arrived.
Sixty-some-odd musicians showed up. They dubbed themselves the 3Penny Chorus and Orchestra, and they rocked.
Jerome Corsi, a slavering paranoiac who could be mistaken for a serious journalist only in the bizarro universe of World Net Daily, became famous for insisting that Barack Obama is a secret foreigner. The stance became difficult to maintain after the president released his long-form birth certificate last year, and Corsi had to find a new schtick. Which he did. Barack Obama, Corsi has discovered, is a secret gay.
This is the sort of thing Rachel Maddow loves. No need to invent crazy rightwing strawmen with guys like Corsi roaming the web. AFTER THE JUMP, see Maddow's gleeful discussion of Corsi's ... theory? hypothesis? fantasy? What's the word, here?
Paul Ryan, Rand Paul, Ollie North, Jim DeMint, Tony Perkins, Mike Huckabee, Steve King, Michele Bachmann, and Kirk Cameron all spoke yesterday at the Family Research Council's Values Voter Summit (where, if the VVS's twitterfeed has it right, someone named Star Parker just suggested President Barack Obama's popularity among young people might lead to something like Mao's Cultural Revolution). Rick Santorum shall be speaking presently. The VVS's talks haven't yet made it to the web; the blooper-reel's nowhere near compiled; and yet already the industrious Democrats at DemRapidResponse have addressed the summit with an ad.
Take a look AFTER THE JUMP ...