Gotta Watch: Strange prom fashion
April 19th, 2011
07:16 PM ET

Gotta Watch: Strange prom fashion

It's that time of year again, prom season. While many are rushing out to buy the perfect outfit, others are taking a more creative route. They are designing their own prom outfits, and the materials they are using may surprise you.

Prom is as sweet as candy - literally – A Wisconsin mom thought it would be a good idea to design her daughter's prom dress out of Starburst wrappers. The entire creation took a total of six years to produce. The crafty mom also made a matching vest, shoes and handbag with the same material.

FULL POST

April 19th, 2011
06:36 PM ET

Tornado cuts college's semester short

Damage from a tornado last weekend has forced Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina, to cancel the rest of the semester, the school announced.

No one on campus was seriously injured, but dormitory rooms and the Willie E. Gary Student Center, where meals are served, were devastated. Windows and roofs were damaged in other buildings, and trees were toppled and lines were down all over campus, the school said in a press release.

"While we exist to educate these young men and women, our first priority is their safety and well-being," Shaw President Dr. Irma McClaurin said in a written statement aired by CNN affiliate WNCN. "With this widespread damage, we could not resume operations in time to continue classes over the next two weeks."

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Natural Disasters • North Carolina • Tornadoes • Weather
April 19th, 2011
06:20 PM ET

Officials: Plane carrying first lady got too close to military C-17

A plane carrying Michelle Obama had to abort its landing on Monday after it came too close to a military C-17 cargo plane, according to a senior administration official and the Federal Aviation Administration.

The planes were three miles apart, when they are supposed to be five miles apart, the official told CNN. The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating what went wrong, as it is believed to be an air traffic controller mistake.

The White House does not believe the first lady's life was ever in danger, the senior official said.

The FAA said in a statement controllers at Andrews Air Force Base instructed an incoming Boeing 737 to perform a "go around" "because the plane did not have the required amount of separation" behind the military plane. The FAA is investigating. "The aircraft were never in any danger," the agency said.

FULL STORY
Post by:
Filed under: Michelle Obama
April 19th, 2011
05:33 PM ET

WikiLeaks suspect sent to Fort Leavenworth, defense official says

U.S. Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, suspected of leaking classified information to the WikiLeaks website, is being moved is being moved to the Joint Regional Correctional Facility at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, a defense official told CNN.

Manning, 23, had been held at Quantico Marine Base in Virginia. He is awaiting a decision on whether he will face a court martial.

Post by:
Filed under: Military • WikiLeaks
Dow up 51 points; gold sets record
Johnson & Johnson was the Dow's top performer on Tuesday, with shares rising more than 3%.
April 19th, 2011
05:15 PM ET

Dow up 51 points; gold sets record

Some highlights from the day's business news:

Dow bolstered by J&J earnings

Stocks staged a modest advance Tuesday, following a sharp selloff on Monday, as investors' attention turned to corporate earnings and the latest housing reports.

"The market continues to focus more broadly on earnings, which so far this season have been mixed," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist with Avalon Partners.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 51 points, or 0.4%; the S&P 500 gained 5 points, or 0.4%, and the Nasdaq Composite added 4 point, or 0.1%.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Business • Economy
Overheard on CNN.com: Readers praise Arizona governor for vetoing 'birther bill'
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer says the 'birther bill' would create 'significant new problems' for Arizona.
April 19th, 2011
05:11 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Readers praise Arizona governor for vetoing 'birther bill'

Comment of the day: "I don't care if he was born on Mars. I think he's a great man and a great president." – oldjovian

"A bridge too far"

Late Monday, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer squashed the so-called “birther bill” that would have required President Barack Obama and other presidential candidates to prove they were born in the United States before their names could have been placed on the state ballot. The bill got approval in the Arizona state House last week, but with Brewer’s veto the bill will not become law unless legislators vote to override it.

CNN.com readers condemned the "birther bill," but many others simply supported Brewer’s decision. whiteraven said, "Good call, Gov Brewer." jw456 said, "Wow. Good for her." Irrawadi said, “As crazy as this woman is, her stock just went up; a statesman-like decision confronting hidden racist agenda guised as constitutional protections. Kudos to you Ms. Brewer!" msacks said, "Wow, Brewer made a rational, reasoned decision, based on forethought over future consequences of a law. It's .... surreal."

Many commenters believe that the "birther" issue is race-related. CEL1 said, "Interesting that after more than 200 years, we elect a black man as president and suddenly people want candidates to prove where they were born." CdnJim said, "This is only an issue because of the President's skin color. It's that simple." Retired3 said, "If there was anything at all

about Obama's birth certificate, don't you think the Republicans would have found out during the 2008 campaign! This argument is so racist." But RazirRiely said, "Nevermind that he has a very NON-AMERICAN sounding name, right?"

Readers also commented on how the "birther" issue could affect the Republican Party: Bgrngod said, "The GOP has got to do everything they can to cast aside this whole Birther thing. It will only drag them down for the election. Kind of like all those 'Hang 'em!' comments did in 2008. Either distance yourselves from this nonsense, or suffer the consequences." Spidey13 said, "As a Republican, I am sickened by what the party has become: It has reduced itself to a racist-tinged knee-jerk reactionary institution whose sole bent is discrediting President Obama, without offering any solutions to any of the SERIOUS economic problems facing the nation."

FULL POST

April 19th, 2011
12:41 PM ET

18 years ago, David Koresh called CNN

Sundays are usually slow in the news business. But there are exceptions.

February 28, 1993, was one of them.

Around 12:45 p.m., CNN national weekend editor Dave Schechter was overseeing the network's national desk when a young assignment editor stood up with his hand over a phone receiver. "I've got someone on the line who says they're in Waco," he announced to his boss. "I'm not sure but I think I heard a gunshot."

A few seconds later, the call dropped.

"All I knew was that someone called from somewhere in Texas about something," Schechter said. "Keep in mind, this is an age before Google. We can't just go online, plug in Texas and see what might be going on. And I couldn't just ring someone's cell phone. We had none of that."

Few outside of the Central Texas town had heard of the Branch Davidians, or their leader David Koresh. The Waco newspaper had only days before published a series called "The Sinful Messiah" about Koresh and his odd followers living in a country compound. And on February 28, the Associated Press had not yet moved a word about the gun battle that had erupted that morning between the Davidians and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives which left several dead on both sides. Koresh had been shot in the side.

Read about Davidians whose relatives died at the compound but still believe Koresh is the messiah

Schechter called CNN's Dallas bureau chief Tony Clark. The correspondent knew about the newspaper stories, and gave Schechter a rundown: Koresh was a charismatic leader of a fundamental off-shoot of the Seventh Day Adventist Church who preached that the Bible foretold the end times. Federal agents had been watching the Davidians for some time, suspecting them of stockpiling military-style weapons with the intention of building an "Army for God."

Watch how the story of the Waco siege began

Clark was dispatched to Waco.

Around 2:30, another call came into CNN. This time Schechter picked up. It was Steve Schneider, David Koresh's right-hand man.

"He was shouting, 'There are women and children in here and they're shooting at us!'" Schechter remembers. "He wanted to talk and tell us everything was going on. Schneider was saying there were people inside (the Davidian compound) and some have weapons. Koresh was wounded.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Branch Davidians • Texas
Branson giving Caribbean island to lemurs
Ring-tailed lemurs are shown at Germany's Hagenbeck Zoo earlier this year.
April 19th, 2011
12:25 PM ET

Branson giving Caribbean island to lemurs

British billionaire Richard Branson plans to turn over one of his Caribbean islands to lemurs.

Well, perhaps not the whole island, but Branson wants to establish a colony of the endangered primates on Moskito Island, one of two private isles he owns in the British Virgin Islands, according to news reports.

Branson, whose Virgin group covers businesses from airlines to music to casinos, told the BBC last week that illegal logging in Madgascar, which he says has increased since a coup two years ago, threatens lemur populations on that island, the only place in the world the animals live in the wild.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Animals • Lemurs • Richard Branson
Tuesday's intriguing people
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal says he would sign a bill requiring presidential candidates to prove they were born in the U.S.
April 19th, 2011
10:53 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Gov. Bobby Jindal

The same day that Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer announced she'd veto that state's "birther bill," her counterpart in Louisiana said he would sign similar legislation into law. According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune, the Louisiana bill requires candidates to qualify for a federal election in that state by providing an original or certified copy of a birth certificate. "I don't purport to be a 'birther,'" said the bill's co-author, Rep. Alan Seabaugh of Shreveport. "This is from the standpoint of cleaning up an area of the law where there appears to be a gap."

Grete Waitz

On Monday, the running world marveled at the performance of 29-year-old Kenyan George Mutai  for his record-setting time of 2:03.02 at the Boston Marathon. Tuesday morning that same community, and much of the world, is remembering Grete Waitz. In 1978, Waitz ran her first New York City Marathon, and shattered the existing women's world record by two minutes (2:32.30). The Norwegian went on to win eight more New York City Marathons. Her image appears on the current New York Marathon medals and many consider her the greatest champion the event has ever had. Waitz died of cancer this morning in Oslo, Norway, the Washington Post reported. She was 57.

Dan Glick

The former Newsweek correspondent and veteran independent journalist used his blog Monday to defend "Three Cups of Tea" author Greg Mortenson, whose truthfulness was called into question in an online article by Jon Krakauer and a "60 Minutes" segment Sunday night.

Glick said he witnessed Mortenson's hands-on work with his Central Asia Institute in Pakistan and Afghanistan in 1998. On Monday, Glick called Krakauer's article, "Three Cups of Deceit", an online assassination of the controversial writer/humanitarian. Glick also charged that the "60 Minutes" segment lacked "basic elements of fairness, balance, perspective, insight and context."

Mortenson has likely blurred the lines of reality in his book, Glick acknowledged. Also, Mortenson is "probably ill-suited to run a $20 million-a-year nonprofit," Glick wrote. Yet Mortenson's "bridge building" to the Islamic world has been immeasurable, he wrote. Mortenson's travels to and investment in the isolated region, as well as his awareness campaigns, have done much more good than harm, Glick said. "The same cannot be said for a lot of NGOs doing development work around the world, " he added,  "much less our military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan."

Don Most, Anson Williams, Marion Ross and Erin Moran

The four supporting cast members of the TV program "Happy Days" charge that the show's owner, CBS, has failed to pay royalties on merchandising items bearing their likenesses since the show's 1974 debut. A CNN/CNNMoney.com investigation reveals that the cast members - along with the estate of the late actor Tom Bosley - have not received payment for such items, particularly casino slot machines developed in 2008. "Someone came up to me and said, 'You must be cleaning up on those casinos,'" Ross said, describing how she first learned of the games. "He said, 'If you get five Marions, you get the jackpot."'

Look! Look! A new Seuss book!
A new book of Dr. Seuss stories will be published in September, Random House says.
April 19th, 2011
09:36 AM ET

Look! Look! A new Seuss book!

We're really not trying to be obtuse, but there's another book coming from Dr. Seuss. You could read it in a house. You could read it with a mouse.

We'll stop there. You get the idea.

"The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories by Dr. Seuss" will hit store shelves in September, according to publisher Random House Inc.

The seven stories have been published before, but never in book form. They appeared in magazines in 1950 and 1951, the publisher says.

Seuss scholar Charles D. Cohen tracked down the stories, whose fantastical illustrations will have more vibrant colors in the book than were possible in the 1950s magazines, according to Random House.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Art • Literature
Tuesday's live video events
April 19th, 2011
07:52 AM ET

Tuesday's live video events

Watch CNN.com Live for continuing coverage on the battle over government spending.

Today's programming highlights...

10:30 am ET - Obama deficit town hall - President Obama travels to a community college in Annandale, Virginia, to discuss his plans for bringing down the deficit.

CNN.com Live is your home for breaking news as it happens.


Filed under: Barack Obama • Budget • Economy • On CNN.com today • Politics • U.S. • Virginia
Report: China stealth fighter makes second test flight
China's J-20 stealth fighter appears on a runway in Chengdu in January.
April 19th, 2011
07:29 AM ET

Report: China stealth fighter makes second test flight

China has had a second test flight of its J-20 stealth fighter jet, according to a report from the government-owned newspaper Global Times.

Under the headline "Mystery jet 'flies' again," the paper cited witness accounts that the jet flew Sunday in Chengdu as part of celebrations of the 60th anniversary of China's aviation industry.

The flight lasted almost an hour and a half, an unnamed witness told Global Times.

"The J-20 made several passes and waggled its wings (rolling the plane first to one side then to the other) to salute the crowd near the airfield," Global Times quotes the witness as saying.

FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: China • Military • World
On the Radar: McDonald's hiring, more strong storms, Sheen's lawsuit
McDonald's has openings for 50,000 jobs in the U.S.
April 19th, 2011
06:55 AM ET

On the Radar: McDonald's hiring, more strong storms, Sheen's lawsuit

50,000 jobs: McDonald's is looking to hire as many as 50,000 people today as part of its National Hiring Day promotion.

Jobs are available at both the corporate and restaurant levels. Job-seekers can go to the company's website or check at local franchises to find positions.

"I'm hopeful to bring in at least a dozen [new employees] if not more," said Robert Hughes, owner of four McDonald's franchises in eastern Pennsylvania, told CNN affiliate WFMZ. "Sales across the country and then regionally are doing so well that we have that need to be hiring more people."

In the Houston, Texas, area, McDonald's is looking to add 1,500 employees, CNN affiliate KHOU reports.

"At McDonalds, we believe our employees do incredible things. If you have a desire for a career, and a passion for quality, you should see what McDonald’s offers," Kimberly Kelley Elizondo, a McDonald’s owner-operator in the Houston area told KHOU.

The burger chain has more than 32,000 restaurants and 1.7 million employees worldwide.

Severe weather: Another round of severe storms on Tuesday could strike Oklahoma, one of the states hit by a  wave of violent weather last week, forecasters say.

CNN's Weather Center in Atlanta described the risk of severe weather as moderate. This time the forecast for severe weather is focused on the Midwest instead of the South, where 45 people perished in a swath of extreme storms, including tornadoes, last week.

The areas facing a moderate risk of tornadoes and high winds on Tuesday extends from the Midwest to the Ohio River Valley.  Also included are the cities of Tulsa, St. Louis and Indianapolis.

The threat of heavy storms is predicted to diminish in those areas on Wednesday morning, but the Northeast could experience isolated outbreaks of severe storms later in the day.

Sheen lawsuit: Charlie Sheen's $100 million lawsuit against his former employer is scheduled to come to a Los Angeles courtroom Tuesday.

But for those looking for the headline-grabbing actor, Sheen is expected to miss the hearing.  His "Violent Torpedo of Truth" tour has him in Washington D.C. Tuesday night.

The lawsuit was filed in March and names Warner Bros. Television and Chuck Lorre, the creator of "Two and a Half Men." Sheen is seeking punitive damages and recovery of unpaid wages in the lawsuit that alleges intentional interference with contractual relations and breach of contract, among other contentions.

In addition to Sheen, 9th Step Productions - a corporation formed by Sheen to contract out his acting services on the series - also is a plaintiff in the lawsuit.

Post by: ,
Filed under: Charlie Sheen • Economy • Fast Food • Jobs • Labor • Showbiz • Weather