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October 5th, 2009
04:23 PM ET

Documents: New court docs from the Erin Andrews stalker case

AC360 

ESPN reporter Erin Andrews was allegedly stalked by a man who posted nude videos of her on the Internet.

ESPN reporter Erin Andrews was allegedly stalked by a man who posted nude videos of her on the Internet.

Recently released court documents involving ESPN reporter Erin Andrews and alleged stalker Michael Barrett:

Michael Barrett complaint
Search Warrant
Search Warrant Affidavit


Filed under: 360° Radar
October 5th, 2009
03:23 PM ET
October 5th, 2009
02:52 PM ET

Interactive: Heroes and zeroes of the fallout

David Ellis
CNNMoney.com

Key financial firms received a wide range of assistance during the past year. Click here and scroll over their stocks. You’ll find few winners – and plenty of losers.


Filed under: 360° Radar • Economy • Finance
October 5th, 2009
02:39 PM ET

Financial Dispatch: Bailout cop says govt. set 'unrealistic expectations'

Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, shown here in 2008

Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, shown here in 2008

Andrew Torgan
CNN Financial News Producer

One year after the Troubled Asset Relief Program was signed into law, the TARP’s top cop says federal officials weren't entirely honest with the public about the health of the first nine financial firms that got bailouts.

Bailout Special Inspector General Neil Barofsky says in an audit that Treasury Dept. officials painted an overly rosy picture, creating “unrealistic expectations,” when they called the first bailout banks “healthy” institutions that would be able to lend more with government help.

Separately, the new audit looks into charges that government officials strong-armed Bank of America into completing its planned purchase of Merrill Lynch, even as BofA worried about mounting losses at Merrill in late 2008. Further, the report looks into whether officials pressured BofA to conceal those losses from shareholders.

Barofsky's office was created by the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, which established the $700 billion federal bailout program. This audit is the fourth completed so far by the watchdog in recent months, but the first that looked at how banks said they used their bailout dollars.

Greenspan says unemployment will top 10%

Former Fed Chief Alan Greenspan over the weekend joined the chorus of politicians and pundits who say unemployment will top 10%, even though he believes the U.S. economy will grow more than expected in the third quarter.

Greenspan told ABC’s “This Week” that he expects 3% growth in the third quarter, up from the 2.5% he previously predicted. However, he said that the “pretty awful” September employment report released Friday showed the jobless rate continued to climb.

A slowing or halt in job losses is different than reversing the rise in unemployment, Greenspan noted, adding that the nation's unemployment rate - currently 9.8% - is “going to penetrate the 10% barrier before heading down.”

That prediction matches previous comments by President Barack Obama and others who say that unemployment is a lagging indicator in an economic recovery.

“Gourmet” gone… “Cookie” crumbles…

“Gourmet” magazine, which has amassed a devoted following over nearly 70 years of publication, will be shut down, publisher Condé Nast said.

The magazine, introduced in 1940, is expected to close by the end of the year.

“Gourmet,” which has nearly 1 million subscribers, fell victim to a decline in magazine advertising and followed a companywide review of magazines. 

In addition to “Gourmet,” Condé Nast said it was also shuttering parenting magazine “Cookie” and two wedding magazines, “Elegant Bride” and “Modern Bride.”

Follow the money… on Twitter: @AndrewTorganCNN


Filed under: Andrew Torgan • Bailout Turmoil • Economy • Finance
October 5th, 2009
11:18 AM ET

Too sick for comprehensive health insurance?

Randi Kaye
CNN AC360° correspondent

Forty-five-year-old Nancy Pessler is too sick to work full time. Instead, she has turned fighting her insurance company into a full-time job. Pessler, who lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, is one of so many Americans falling through the cracks in the health care debate.

She was diagnosed in 2003 with a rare disease known as "mixed connective tissue disease" which is combination of lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and a few others all wrapped into one. Pessler wakes up every day feeling like she has the flu. "My immune system is in the tank," she told CNN. Because of this, she says, she's too fatigued to work full time. And that's why she finds herself in this predicament.

She's too sick to work full time, so she can't get full comprehensive health coverage from an employer. And she can't get an individual comprehensive health coverage either because of what insurance companies view as her "pre-existing condition." Pessler says she spends hours on the phone battling to get her bills paid, and she's going broke in the process. "First, you're on hold for about 20, 30 minutes. Then after you get off being on hold you get a representative ... they'll get back in touch with you or call another person or transfer you to another person ... it's quite an ordeal," says Pessler.

Pessler had COBRA, the government plan that allows former employees to continue to pay for their previous employer's insurance out of their own pocket, with the same benefits, for 18 months. Once it ran out, she says her insurance company, Anthem Insurance, only offered her a plan which didn't cover anything related to her "pre-existing condition." She says, "I feel the system has failed me ... I've paid into Social Security, Medicare, disability. It leaves me hopeless. I feel like there's no solution for my situation."

Keep Reading...


Filed under: 360° Radar • Health Care • Randi Kaye
October 5th, 2009
10:58 AM ET
October 5th, 2009
10:56 AM ET

Obama's mistakes are a warning sign

President Obama personally appealed to IOC members for the 2016 summer Olympic Games to be in Chicago.

President Obama personally appealed to IOC members for the 2016 summer Olympic Games to be in Chicago.

Julian E. Zelizer
CNN

During the past few months, two events have revealed a side of President Obama that we knew little about. First came his remark in July when he said at a press conference that the police who arrested Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates had acted "stupidly."

The unrehearsed remark triggered controversy right at a time when Democrats needed to focus public attention on health care.

And last week, at a climactic moment for the health care debate in the Senate, Obama suddenly went to make a personal pitch for holding the 2016 Summer Olympics in Chicago, Illinois.

When the International Olympic Committee said no to the president's hometown in the first round of voting, and then gave the event to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Obama suffered an embarrassing defeat. The late-night comedians and his political foes were predictably chomping at the bit.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Barack Obama • Julian E. Zelizer
October 5th, 2009
10:39 AM ET

The Butt Bomber in ‘Rectum Gate’

Saudi Arabia's Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, head of counterterrorism, was slightly injured in August.

Saudi Arabia's Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, head of counterterrorism, was slightly injured in August.

Arsalan Iftikhar
AC360° Contributor
Founder, TheMuslimGuy.com

In the most recently ‘absurd’ story on terrorism that I have heard in quite a long time, the would-be assassin of Saudi Arabia’s Prince Mohammed bin Nayef (head of Saudi Arabia’s counterterrorism efforts) apparently decided to hide his bomb in his underwear, apparently believing that cultural taboos would prevent a search in that part of his body, according to a Saudi government official close to the investigation.

According to CNN, the prince was slightly injured when the bomb exploded in the August 2009 attack a few months ago. Several news reports this week have said that the assailant had hidden the bomb inside of his own RECTUM, but according to the Saudi official, the government assessment discounted those reports, based on various factors.

Even so…Are you serious?

Terrorists are now literally sticking bombs up their own asses to blow people up?

Wow…

Read More...


Filed under: Arsalan Iftikhar • Terrorism
October 5th, 2009
10:31 AM ET

Dear President Obama #259: Under the harvest moon

Reporter's Note: President Obama is from Illinois, where I used to work on farms as a kid. I’m not sure what he’ll do after his Presidency, but I like to think I’ll always have my corn-growing skills to fall back on, should the letter writing business dry up.

Tom Foreman | Bio
AC360° Correspondent

Dear Mr. President,

Did you see that absolutely marvelous Harvest Moon this weekend? I was driving one of my daughters and her friends to Georgetown for dinner right before the Homecoming Dance, and it appeared at the end of the roadway. Really magnificent.

Most Americans don’t think much of the Harvest Moon, or frankly even the harvest, these days. I’ve driven past soybean fields with urban colleagues, and when I’ve mentioned something about the crop they’ve looked at me as if I’ve sprouted horns and starting flicking flies with my tail. Not to disparage too much, but they’ll prattle on for ten minutes about the virtues of free-range chicken, and often I’m pretty sure they’ve never spent any time among any actual chickens on any kind of range, free or otherwise.

A hundred years ago, about a third of our countrymen were farmers. (Some estimates are much higher…) In those days, even the people who were not directly involved in farming had grandparents, uncles, aunts, or cousins who worked on farms. In other words, almost every family knew a fair bit about farming, if only by osmosis. These days, not so much. Only around two percent of Americans farm. The rest of us live on the food they produce in blissful ignorance of how it actually made it to our tables. Seriously, have you ever stood in a grocery store aisle and just asked yourself: Where the heck did all this come from?

FULL POST

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