George Clooney To Hedge Fund Honcho Daniel Loeb: Stop Spreading Fear At Sony


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George Clooney, who yesterday sent his Smokehouse Pictures partner Grant Heslov to Hollywood to show Sony and Fox a first cut of their Oscar-season period film The Monuments Men, has spent most of his career navigating the challenge of making provocative movies at studios obsessed with tentpoles. While he’s won Oscars — the latest the Best Picture prize he shared with Heslov and producer-director Ben Affleck for Argo — Clooney is also the guy who kept a photo of himself as Batman prominently displayed on his office wall, as a cautionary reminder of what can happen when you make movies solely for commercial reasons. Continue reading

Smaller Unions Complain Of White House Cold Shoulder

A new labor liaison. And complaints about the Christmas Card list.

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WASHINGTON — A reshuffling in the White House’s labor operation has prompted complaints from some smaller labor unions that the Obama Administration’s hand-in-glove relationship with big labor hasn’t extended to all of its brethren.

“The responsiveness of the White House in the last four years has left some of us unsatisfied including myself, but we’re very hopeful,” said Larry Hanley, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union, which represents public train and bus riders around North America. “I’m not clear though whether it was the person in that position or the inability of the person in that position to get the attention of the senior staff and the president that caused problems in the past. But there have been difficulties making things happen.” Continue reading

Simpson wins small parole victory on some charges


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CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — O.J. Simpson won a small victory Wednesday in his bid for freedom as Nevada granted him parole on some of his convictions in a 2008 kidnapping and armed robbery involving the holdup of two sports memorabilia dealers at a Las Vegas hotel room.

But the decision doesn’t mean Simpson will be leaving prison anytime soon. Because he was convicted on multiple charges, Simpson still faces at least four more years in prison on sentences that were ordered to run consecutively Continue reading

Why Boeing Is Buying Up Older 747s


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Auto dealers have long been willing to take an old clunker off a potential buyer’s hands in order to clinch a sale of a shiny new model. Now airplane makers are following suit. Boeing (BA) is acquiring previous versions of the 747 from airlines ordering its new, tough-to-sell 747-8. Of the 19 older 747s that have changed hands so far this year, Boeing has snapped up seven, according to data compiled by Ascend Online Fleets. That makes it the biggest buyer of the used jets in 2013. Continue reading

Dead people gave nearly $600K to campaigns since 2009

By: Fredreka Schouten and Christopher Schnaars

Article Reprintdead people donating

WASHINGTON — The dead can’t vote, but they can give money to politicians.

Thirty-two people listed on federal campaign records as “deceased” have contributed more than $586,000 to congressional and presidential candidates and political parties since Jan. 1, 2009, according to a USA TODAY analysis of Federal Election Commission filings. Continue reading