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November 23rd, 2009
09:51 PM ET

CNN Hero Roy Foster: Stand Down House

CNN Heroes

Roy Foster's facility, Stand Down House, has helped about 900 male veterans since 2000.

Roy Foster's facility, Stand Down House, has helped about 900 male veterans since 2000.

Following a faint trail through a dense patch of woods in Florida's Palm Beach County, Roy Foster is a man on a mission.

Foster, 53, is searching for homeless veterans - and he knows where to look.

Whether in a vacant lot behind a supermarket or a small clearing off the highway, homeless vets aren't that hard to find: One in three homeless adults has served in the military, and more than 150,000 veterans nationwide are homeless on any given night, according to the Veterans Administration.

Working with the sheriff's homeless outreach unit, Foster finds vets camped in tents or makeshift lean-tos, where he delivers a message: There's help for you if you want it.

"For our heroes to be living in [these] conditions, it's totally unacceptable," said Foster.

Since 2000, approximately 900 veterans have found life-changing help at Foster's facility, Stand Down House. Named for the military command that gives troops time to rest after arduous duty, the program provides homeless male vets food, shelter and a safe place to recover, as well as the tools to conquer their personal problems.

Find out more about Foster’s organization.

Read More...


Filed under: 360° Radar • CNN Heroes
November 23rd, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 11/23/09

Tonight on 360°, could a government panel's guidelines influence the law over what would be covered in the Senate health care reform bill? We're keeping them honest on Capitol Hill. Plus, former Vice President Dick Cheney speaks out against the 9/11 terror trials in New York. And, a bank robbery suspect is arrested by cops. And wait till you see what was caught on tape as he was handcuffed.

Want to know what else we're covering? Read EVENING BUZZ

Scroll down to join the live chat during the program. It's your chance to share your thoughts on tonight's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules.

Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book")
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (there's no need to yell)
3) Use your real name (first name only is fine)
4) No links
5) Watch your language (keep it G-rated; PG at worst - and that includes $#&*)


Filed under: Live Blog • T1
November 23rd, 2009
08:57 PM ET

$600 million spent to influence health care debate

Jennifer Liberto
CNNMoney.com senior writer

The price tag to influence the health care debate in the halls of Congress has surpassed $600 million and is fast becoming a legislative record breaker.

Reaching beyond the half-billion mark, the total spent on lobbyists, television ads and political donations is enough to pay the insurance tab for about 45,000 families a year.

A third of that spending, $200 million, was raised and spent just in the past few months, as Congress has been more thoroughly ensconced in policy debates about public insurance options and taxpayer-funded abortions.

Senate Democrats are expected to unveil their official health care bill as soon as Wednesday, and debate it in December and vote by the year's end.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Economy • Health Care
November 23rd, 2009
08:54 PM ET

Crib recall: 2.1 million deemed unsafe

Drop-side cribs have been recalled by the thousands this year due to hardware malfunctions that could cause infants to be wedged between the mattress and crib wall.

Drop-side cribs have been recalled by the thousands this year due to hardware malfunctions that could cause infants to be wedged between the mattress and crib wall.

Aaron Smith and Ben Rooney
CNNMoney.com staff writers

The federal agency in charge of product safety announced the recall of 2.1 million cribs Monday, citing defective hardware that can cause toddlers and infants to suffocate.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said parents should immediately stop using Stork Craft drop-side cribs, which are made by Stork Craft Manufacturing Inc., of British Columbia, Canada.

About 1.2 million of the cribs have been distributed in the United States and 968,000 units distributed in Canada.

The recall includes about 147,000 Stork Craft drop-side cribs with the Fisher-Price logo, the CPSC said.

Keep Reading...


Filed under: Economy • Parenting
November 23rd, 2009
07:15 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Awake for 23 Years, Not in a 'Coma'

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

Imagine for 23 years, being trapped in a paralyzed body with no way to talk with your family and friends, who think you are in coma and then a persistent vegetative state. However, you can hear everything. You hear the doctors and nurses at your bedside. You also hear your family when they visit. You can feel their touch, but you can't talk. You can't let them know you love them. You can't even weep over your father's death when you're told the awful news.

That was the reality and nightmare for Rom Houben, now 46.

He was forced into a world of silence after a car accident in 1983.

Tonight, 360° M.D. Sanjay Gupta, who's a neurosurgeon, has the facts on this startling case. It seems to be more common that many people think.

Also tonight, we're Keeping them Honest on Capitol Hill.  Could the recommendations from a government health panel that most women wait until the age of 50 to get mammograms  find their way into law?

Just last week you may recall Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius spoke about the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a 16-member panel assembled by the agency, which made the recommendation.

"They do not set federal policy and they don't determine what services are covered by the federal government," Sebelius said.

"Keep doing what you have been doing for years - talk to your doctor about your individual history, ask questions, and make the decision that is right for you," she added.

But will the panel actually get to set federal policy, after all? We'll show you what we uncovered tonight on 360°.

We've have a remarkable panel of women who will be on the program tonight to weigh in on the debate over health care. You'll hear from Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina, who's slamming the mammogram guidelines. She's a breast cancer survivor and wonders if she'd be alive today if she followed those recommendations. Feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem, who's also a cancer survivor,  and  Dr. Bernadine Healy, the former head of the National Institutes of Health, will  also be on 360°.

Join us for these stories and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET. See you then!


Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
November 23rd, 2009
05:22 PM ET

Terrorism trial may point way for 9/11 cases

During about five years of detention at Guantánamo, Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani says he was confined in harsh conditions, abused during interrogation and denied a lawyer.

During about five years of detention at Guantánamo, Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani says he was confined in harsh conditions, abused during interrogation and denied a lawyer.

Benjamin Weiser
The New York Times

Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani, suspected of being a Qaeda terrorist, was captured in Pakistan in 2004, held in secret prisons run by the C.I.A. and then moved to the naval base at Guantánamo Bay. During about five years of detention, he says, he was confined in harsh conditions, abused during interrogation and denied a lawyer.

Since the spring, Mr. Ghailani has also been a defendant in federal court in Manhattan, the first Guantánamo detainee to be moved to the civilian courts.

From the moment the Obama administration announced that it would seek to try Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the professed planner of 9/11, and other Guantánamo detainees in the same federal court, the wisdom of the decision has been debated. Critics of the move have worried that government secrets will leak, that evidence won through harsh tactics could lead to dismissals, or that a trial would be used as a platform to spew hate.

Read More...


Filed under: Guantanomo Bay
November 23rd, 2009
05:08 PM ET

Post-Pizza

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed reportedly confessed to being the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks after being waterboarded.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed reportedly confessed to being the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks after being waterboarded.

Jeffrey Toobin | BIO
CNN Senior Analyst
The New Yorker

Sometime in the next few months, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four confederates will be indicted in Manhattan federal court, and the case will arrive at a turning point: the designation of the judge who will preside over their trial. The selection is usually made by a draw from a wheel in the office of the court clerk, but prosecutors have also been known to try to game the system by telling the clerk that a new case is factually related to an older one that had been presided over by a favored judge. In any event, the judicial assignment is sure to be daunting and lengthy. There will be no shortage of advice for the putative Lance Ito of Ground Zero, but the winner of this particular derby might be well advised to pay a visit to Pierre N. Leval.

“I’ve had the same mailing address for almost my whole career,” Leval said the other day in his chambers, on Pearl Street. A former Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District courthouse, Leval, who is seventy-three, was named to the federal trial bench by Jimmy Carter in 1977 and to the court of appeals by Bill Clinton in 1993. He took senior status, with a reduced caseload, in 2002, but he continues to hear cases as a judge on the Second Circuit. Still, for all those years around Foley Square, he is best known for presiding over one of the most consequential trials in federal history: the Pizza Connection case.

The trial concerned a diaspora of Sicilian heroin entrepreneurs who operated out of various slice-and-Coke emporiums in locations ranging from Queens to rural Illinois. (Al Dente’s, in Forest Hills, remains open, under new management.) “The problem in the case was that the government didn’t have a lot of actual heroin to show the jury,” Leval said. “So the case was mostly a series of wiretaps of phone calls where the callers talked about heroin, and then F.B.I. agents testifying about how they followed the defendants around from place to place. Most of the time, it was boring.” He added, “People also got murdered from time to time in that case.”

Read More...


Filed under: 360° Radar
November 23rd, 2009
04:37 PM ET

Documents: The Senate Health Care Bill

AC360°

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid unveiled the Senate Democrat's proposal for health care reform last week entitled the "Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act."

With analysis from the Congressional Budget Office it is estimated the bill will extend coverage to 30 million Americans who are currently uninsured and cost approximately $849 billion over the next 10 years while still reducing projected budget deficits by $127 billion.

Read the full contents of the Senate's proposal


Filed under: Health Care
November 23rd, 2009
04:33 PM ET

Jorge Munoz: An Angel in Queens

At around 9:30 each night, relief comes in the form of Jorge Munoz's white pickup truck, filled with hot food, coffee and hot chocolate.

Jorge Munoz estimates he has served more than 70,000 free meals since 2004.

Jorge Munoz estimates he has served more than 70,000 free meals since 2004.

CNN Heroes

Every day, unemployed men gather under the elevated 7 train in Jackson Heights, Queens. Many of them are homeless. All of them are hungry.

At around 9:30 each night, relief comes in the form of Jorge Munoz's white pickup truck, filled with hot food, coffee and hot chocolate.

The men eagerly accept containers of chicken and rice from Munoz, devouring the food on the spot. Quiet gratitude radiates from the crowd.

For many, this is their only hot meal of the day; for some, it's the first food they've eaten since last night. Vote now for the CNN Hero of the Year

"I thank God for touching that man's heart," says Eduardo, one of the regulars.

Learn more about Jorge Munoz's organization here...


Filed under: CNN Heroes
November 23rd, 2009
04:17 PM ET

Beat 360° 11/23/09

Ready for today's Beat 360°? Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption and our staff will join in too. Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite! Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:

Fergie and Alex Rodriguez attend a game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions! Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

Staff:

Steve Brusk

"Wait a minute! Is that Jeter on the Jumbotron?!?"

Viewer:

Kevin Haggith, Toronto

"Rodriguez is ecstatic when the usual hot dog and beer combo at the game was replaced with bottled water and a side order of black eyed peas instead."
_________________________________________________________________________________ Beat 360° Challenge


Filed under: Beat 360° • T1
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