Monthly Archives: August 2012

If You’re Not Convinced That Romney Can Save The Economy, Look Who He Might Pick For Fed Chair

via Business Insider: 


While the rest of the world deteriorates, the U.S. remains a pillar of economic strength.

Greg Mankiw

And the reason for this, believe it or not, is the massive deficits that have been run by DC, replenishing the private sector with cash. Despite incredible gridlock, and a party that’s been devoted to cutting spending, the fact of the matter is that the U.S. has not embraced the austerity wave that’s gripped much of the world.

The economy is still fragile, and we need these deficits to continue, which is one reason to think that Mitt Romney would be the better candidate for the economy.

He’s pretty much given up on any pretense of balancing the budget while offering broad tax cuts. What’s more, a Romney White House would make the Congressional GOP forget about cutting spending, and revert to their old ways under Bush (austerity is purely an out-of-power concept).

But that’s not the only reason to like Romney!

Dylan Matthews at The Washington Post’s Wonkblog looks at the three frontrunners to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed chair (Romney said last week that he won’t renominate Bernanke).

One of the names is Greg Mankiw, the well-known Harvard economist who is one of Mitt Romney’s main economic advisors.

As Matthews explains, Mankiw has advocated policies that would make Bernanke blush.

You want to see the Fed stimulate spending? Check this out

In an op-ed last year, he sympathized with Fed critics calling for the bank to allow its inflation target to double from 2 to 4 percent to spur growth, but argued that that policy was politically untenable. Instead, he proposed keeping the 2 percent target but making it a “level” target, meaning that if one goes under 2 percent inflation one year, the Fed will promote inflation of over 2 percent the next year. That would imply a considerably looser Fed policy regime than the one currently in place, one that could be achieved either through additional asset buys (that is, quantitative easing) or other, less traditional policies.

And Mankiw has expressed an interest in those less-traditional policies as well. In another piece, he cheekily suggested implementing a 10 percent negative interest rate on cash by invalidating all paper currency whose serial numbers have a certain final digit. The effect would be that 10 percent of all money would be wiped out, spurring people to spend it or keep it in banks that offer higher, but still negative, returns. In a follow-up post, he argued that a negative interest rate of about 1 percent is appropriate.

As economist David Beckworth has argued, Mankiw has all-but endorsed the controversial notion of targeting nominal GDP, which goes under the category of “unusual unusual” Fed actions.

So if you figure that Romney is the deficits candidate, and surmise that his Fed chair would be a man willing to go pedal to the metal to juice the economy, the case for his candidacy as the stimulus choice is pretty clear.


Herman Cain’s Interview On The Daily Show Last Night Was Just As Wonderful As You Would Expect

via Business Insider: 

Former Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain appeared on The Daily Show last night with Jon Stewart, as The Daily Show continued its “Road to Jeb Bush 2016” at the convention.

Stewart and Cain talked Romney’s likability problems, Cain’s enthusiastic, enduring support, and a poll that found Mitt Romney getting zero percent of the Black vote.

Cain had a particularly defiant response to the poll question.

“First, I am not a zero,” he said. “But secondly, the polls are inaccurate in my opinion, based upon anecdotal evidence, based upon people that I know.”



Paul Ryan’s Speech Proves The New Political Truth: It’s Fine To Lie

via Business Insider: 

There was once a time when lying in a political speech–and getting called out on it by the media–was shameful or embarrassing.

Not anymore.

Now, says Jeff Greenfield, the veteran political analyst and Yahoo News columnist, the media is held in such low regard by Americans that getting called out for lying merely serves to confirm a widespread belief that the “liberal media” has an axe to grind against conservative politicians.

As a result, the whoppers that dominated Republican VP candidate Paul Ryan’s convention speech last night will likely not hurt the candidate’s standing with Republican voters, says Greenfield. Rather, they’ll reinforce the right-wing view that the media is “in the tank” for President Obama.

For those who do care about the truth, though, it’s worth noting that even FOX News described Ryan’s speech as “deceiving.” (The FOX columnist, Sally Kohn, also called the speech “dazzling” and “distracting.” And Ryan did have some wonderful lines, especially one about how the job market is so bad that today’s college graduates have nothing to do but go home to their parents houses and lie on their beds staring at “fading posters” of Obama.)

The descriptions of the speech from other observers, meanwhile, ranged from “factually shaky” to “fibs” to “lies.”

What facts in particular were observers up in arms about?

Well, for starters, there were once again the claims that Obamacare cuts $716 billion of benefits from Medicare and that Paul Ryan wants to preserve Medicare. The truth is that Obamacare reduces payments to hospitals and doctors by $716 billion, not benefits.* Also, far from preserving Medicare, after a 10-year grace period, Romney and Ryan want to radically change it.

Then Ryan blamed S&P’s downgrade of US debt on Obama, when S&P explained explicitly that its downgrade was the result of Congressional Republicans–Ryan included–threatening to cause the country to default.

Then Ryan accused Obama of lying to voters in his home state by promising to keep a GMplant open for “hundreds of years” after he was elected, only to have it closed in the first year. The truth is that GM announced that it was closing the plant before Obama took office.

And so on.

Jeff Greenfield says that none of this will matter to voters, who will just blame the media and its silly “fact-checkers.”  And he’s presumably right.

But it’s worth noting that Ryan’s distortions came only one day after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie promised the country that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan were leaders who were bold and brave enough to give America the “hard truths” that it so desperately needs to hear (and we do desperately need to hear them).

There were certainly some truths in Ryan’s speech–unemployment, for example, is much higher at this point in the recovery than President Obama said it would be–but there were also some lies.

* This is America, so of course there are many smart folks on both sides. I’ve heard from some smart Ryan defenders who argue strenuously that he did not lie about Medicare or anything else. In the case of Medicare, they say the $716B will reduce benefits because hospitals will opt out of Medicare. That’s possible. The reason I called the statement a lie is that I think the point of both the speech and the ad is to convey the message that Obamacare actually cuts $716B of benefits, which it doesn’t. But there are probably ways in which every word of Ryan’s speech could be interpreted as factually correct.


Author Wants Romney to Repay Polygamist Great Granddad’s 130-Year-Old Debt

via Yahoo: 


Author Judith Freeman wants $25,000 from Mitt Romney since, as she wrote in The Los Angeles Review of Books,in the 1880s her great grandfather, William Flake paid for Miles Romney’s bail when they were both locked up for polygamy. “Miles P. Romney skipped out on his bail, fleeing across the border into Mexico with his three wives, Hannah, Annie, and Catharine, and their children,” Freeman wrote in the Review over the weekend. “He left my great-grandfather [William] Flake holding the bag. Flake, on the other hand, was eventually sent to the Yuma Territorial Prison where he served out a six-month sentence for polygamy,” she added. Of course one of the big (answerable) questions is after 130 years, why does Freeman, author of a Raymond Chandler biography and three other novels, want the money now and not earlier. And, of course, Mitt Romney coming from a family of bill-skipping, law-ducking polygamists, isn’t exactly what the Republicans want floating out there right around convention time. She writes: 

I’ve done some calculation, and $1,000 from the 1880s would today be worth about $25,000, not counting interest (and since I’m not a smart enough to figure up the interest, I’m willing to let that part slide). Because William Jordan Flake has about 15,000 descendants living at the moment, I realize I’ll have to divide up the money should Romney do the right thing and write out that check.

However, I want to assure Mitt that I’m more than happy to be the disperser of the funds and I guarantee that all the Flakes of the world will get their fair share the moment he does the right thing.

The Romney camp hasn’t yet released a statement, nor have they paid Freeman the $25,000 she’s asking.

Charlie Sheen’s ‘Anger Management’ Picked Up for 90 More Episodes at FX

via Hollywood Reporter: 

Anger Management Denise Richards Charlie Sheen - H 2012

UPDATED: The Lionsgate-produced series has triggered a back order, with production resuming in September and new episodes to start airing in January.

FX is staying in business with Charlie Sheen.

After a 10-episode summer run, Sheen’s comeback comedy,Anger Management, has been granted a 90-episode order. Production will resume Sept. 24, with new episodes premiering in January. The show’s writing staff has been back at work since early July.

As part of the net’s pact with Lionsgate, the Sheen vehicle had to hit a certain undisclosed ratings threshold over the course of its run to move forward with 90 more episodes. During its first nine weeks on the air, the comedy delivered 4.53 million total viewers and 2.5 million in the coveted 18-49 demo. The final weeks took a substantial hit, likely impacted by the Olympics.

FX Networks GM John Landgraf told reporters gathered for the Television Critics Association’s semi-annual press tour in late July that the odds were “overwhelmingly” in the series’ favor, noting that he was pleased creatively and commercially with the effort. He urged critics, who have been less enthusiastic, to consider assessing the series more like comparable multicamera entries (Mike & Molly,Two and a Half Men) than typical FX fare (Louie, Wilfred).

“We set a very high ratings bar that included some additional hurdles for Anger Management to earn its back-90 order, and the series met and exceed those metrics,” said FX Networks executive vp Chuck Saftler at the time of the Wednesday renewal. “[Showrunner] Bruce Helford has created a sitcom that works extremely well in our pre-10 p.m. programming lineup. Charlie Sheen and the entire cast did an amazing job in the first 10 episodes, which were produced in a very tight window. I have no doubt that the producers and cast will be able to pull off the Herculean task of producing 90 episodes over the next two years.”

The half-hour show, which co-stars Selma Blair and Shawnee Smith, proved a boon for both the network and studio before it even premiered. While FX brass have kept mum on details, sources say Anger has sold at the highest CPM rates FX has seen for a first-year series. The studio, which with subsidiary Debmar-Mercury will begin peddling Anger to stations for a fall 2014 syndication debut, has sold the series in Canada, Latin America, Germany, Scandinavia and Australia, among other territories, for roughly $600,000 an episode, more than what established sitcom hits Seinfeld and Sheen’s own Two and a Half Men commanded out of the gate.

As the series embarks on its back 90, Martin Sheen will reprise his role as Charlie’s father on the show. The elder Sheen, who has turned up in one episode already, is expected to appear in some 20 of the 90 episodes, says sources, though execs involved insist that it won’t become “the Charlie and Martin Show.” As Landgraf sees it, the addition will make the series more of a “multigenerational family comedy,” much as Two and a Half Men once was with Sheen at the helm.

Management, the brainchild of Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer, hails from distributors Mort Marcus and Ira Bernstein, co-presidents of Santa Monica-based Debmar-Mercury; Lionsgate Television; Revolution’s Joe Roth; Sheen manager Mark Burg‘s production company, Evolution Management; and Robert Maron.

The Vermont town where restaurants add 18 percent to the bill for anyone who speaks French because ‘foreigners are bad tippers’

via Daily Mail:

Burlington, Vermont, has had an influx of French Canadians from Quebec

In Burlington, Vermont, there seems to be an 18 percent surcharge for speaking French.

Some waiters in the New England tourist town have begun adding a mandatory tip onto the bill of foreign diners.

Restaurant owners say it’s their solution to an influx of French-speaking Canadians from Quebec who are extraordinarily bad tippers — sometimes leaving just $1 or a few cents tip on $50 or $100 tabs.

Splash at the BoathouseDiscrimination? Splash at the Boathouse is one of the restaurants in Burlington, Vermont, where servers add a mandatory 18 percent tip to French-speaking diners’ tabs

At least one Vermont resident, who grew up in France, says the new rules are discrimination and they might be illegal. She has been slapped with an automatic 18 percent gratuity three times because she often speaks friends to her friends during dinner.

Restaurant owners say there’s no policy in place to include mandatory tip on diners from Canada and other countries. They claim they have left the decision up to individual waiters and waitresses.

However, the practice is so common, servers refer to it as the ‘Queeb tax’ — after the Quebecois who inspired it, Seven Days, a Vermont news site, reports.

The Asiana Noodle Shop is one restaurant where foreigners are likely to be hit with an 18 percent gratuity included on their bill .

Owner Sandy Kong told ABC News that she was tired of her waitresses getting bad tips.

‘But some Canadians come in, they spend like $100 or $150 and they leave the wait staff maybe a $1 tip,’ she said. ‘It happens pretty often. I realize that the Canadians think it’s discrimination, but on all the receipts it’s printed out on bottom: “We suggest an 18 or 20 percent tip.”‘

Visitors: The city of Burlington has been encouraging tourists from Quebec to visit Vermont and spend their moneyVisitors: The city of Burlington has been encouraging tourists from Quebec to visit Vermont and spend their money

Ms Kong, who was born in Hong Kong, said other foreigners are often lousy at leaving money for the wait staff.

‘Asians do it also. But it seems that Canadians tip the worst,’ she said.

Anne-Marie Humbert, who lives in a nearby town in Vermont, first noticed the practice when she had dinner with her husband at Splash at the Boat House on Burlington.

The two spent their dinner speaking French to each mother. Ms Humbert was born and raised in France, but has lived in the United States for 30 years.

When the bill came, it looked too steep, until she realized the waitress had included an 18 percent tip on top of the total for the meal.

Ms Humbert protested and the server removed the surcharge. Ms Humbert says she left a 15 percent tip.

The policies are discrimination, Ms Humbert says, because waiters are targeting anyone who they assume isn’t American.

The problem likely arises from a cultural difference. In Canada and most countries, tipping 10 to 15 percent is customary, though many restaurants automatically include a gratuity on the bill.

Waiters in Vermont make just $4.10 an hour without tips.


GOP OKs platform barring abortions, gay marriage

via Yahoo News: 


Bradley Thompson, production manager for the Republican National Convention, left, proposes to his girlfriend Laura Bowman, a production coordinator, on the stage of the convention hall, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Bradley Thompson, production manager for the Republican National Convention, left, proposes to his girlfriend Laura Bowman, a production coordinator, on the stage of the convention hall, Wednesday, Aug. 29

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Republicans emphatically approved a toughly worded party platform at their national convention Tuesday that would ban all abortions and gay marriages, reshape Medicare into a voucher-like program and cut taxes to energize the economy and create jobs.

The document opens by warning that while the American Dream has long been of equal opportunity for everyone, “Today that American Dream is at risk.” It pledges that the GOP will “begin anew, with profound changes in the way government operates; the way it budgets, taxes and regulates.”

Both parties routinely approve platforms at their conventions every four years, meant to encapsulate their principles and goals. Much of their details are customarily ignored when it comes to actually governing.

Even so, a poll by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center found more people interested in the GOP platform than in the upcoming acceptance speeches by presidential candidate Mitt Romney and his running mate, Paul Ryan. The survey found that 52 percent said they were interested in learning about the Republican platform, compared to 44 percent interested in Romney’s speech and 46 percent interested in Ryan’s.

“This ambitious blueprint projects a sea change in the way that government works,” said Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, who led the party’s platform committee. “It offers a solution for workers without jobs, families without savings and neighborhoods without hope.”

Democrats lambasted the platform and immediately sought to tie it to Romney, who has differed from some of its details. For instance, he has said he would allow abortions in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is threatened.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who is among several Democrats in Tampa trying to get their party’s views heard, called the platform’s stances on abortion and immigration “draconian” and “extreme” and blamed Romney. “What you have seen from him is that he does one thing, he says another,” Villaraigosa said. “He has taken one position after another, time and again you know, and you can’t have it both ways.”

Here are key elements of the Republican platform:


It states that the best jobs program is economic growth. “We do not offer yet another made-in-Washington package of subsidies and spending to create temporary or artificial jobs.”



The GOP pledges to reform the tax code to make it easier for businesses to generate more capital and create more jobs.



“We reject the use of taxation to redistribute income, fund unnecessary or ineffective programs or foster the crony capitalism that corrupts both politicians and corporations.”

It says a Republican administration would extend the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003, pending reform of the tax code. It says the party would strive to eliminate taxes on interest, dividends and capital gains altogether for lower- and middle-income taxpayers. It also would work to repeal the estate tax and the alternative minimum tax.

The party backs constitutional amendments to balance the federal budget and require a super majority for any tax increases.



The platform affirms the rights of states and the federal government not to recognize same-sex marriage. It backs a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.



“Voter fraud is a political poison,” the platform says. It praises legislation to require photo identification for voting and to prevent election fraud.



The party says it opposes legislation intended to restrict Second Amendment rights by limiting the capacity of clips or magazines or otherwise restoring the assault weapons ban passed during the Clinton presidency.



The party states that “the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed.” It opposes using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or to fund organizations that perform or advocate abortions. It says the party will not fund or subsidize health care that includes abortion coverage.



The party is committed to domestic energy independence and an “all-of-the-above” energy policy, backing the exploration and development of the Outer Continental Shelf and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. It criticizes the Obama administration for picking winners and losers in the energy sector and expresses support for new coal-fired plants that will be low-cost, environmentally responsible and efficient.

It adds: “We will end the EPA’s war on coal and encourage the increased safe development in all regions of the nation’s coal resources.” It calls on Congress to prohibit the EPA from moving forward with new greenhouse gas regulations “that will harm the nation’s economy and threaten millions of jobs over the next quarter century.”



The platform pledges to move both Medicare and Medicaid away from “the current unsustainable defined-benefit entitlement model to a fiscally sound defined-contribution model.” It supports a Medicare transition to a premium-support model with an income-adjusted contribution toward a health plan of the enrollee’s choice. Age eligibility in Medicare must be made more realistic in light of longer life spans.

Medicaid services for low income people would be transformed into a block grant program in which the states would be given the flexibility to determine the best programs for their residents.



The platform makes clear that “we oppose any form of amnesty for those who, by intentionally violating the law, disadvantage those who have obeyed it.” It demands that the Justice Department halt lawsuits against Arizona, Alabama and other states that have enacted tough measures against illegal immigrants. It says federal funding should be denied to universities that provide in-state tuition rates to illegal immigrants. It advocates making English the official national language.



It states that a Republican president on his first day in office would use his waiver authority to halt progress in carrying out the health care act pushed through by President Barack Obama and that Republican victories in November would guarantee that the act is never implemented. It proposes a Republican plan based on improving health care quality and lowering costs and a system that promotes the free market and gives consumers more choice.



Republicans support consumer choice, including home schooling, local innovations such as single-sex classes, full-day school hours and year-round schools. It says Republicans renew their call for replacing family planning programs for teens “with abstinence education which teaches abstinence until marriage as the responsible and respected standard of behavior.”



The platform says Republicans are “the party of peace through strength” and support the concept of American exceptionalism — “the conviction that our country holds a unique place and role in human history.” It criticizes the current administration for its weak positions toward such countries as North Korea, China and Iran and its reductions in military spending. The Republican national military strategy “restores as a principal objective the deterrence using the full spectrum of our military capabilities.”

Tom Hanks ‘wasted fan’ photo goes viral

via Digital Spy: 


Tom Hanks has appeared in a series of humorous photos that have gone viral.

The Hollywood actor posed for a couple of photos with a fan in a restaurant, with the young man pretending to be drunk and slumped on his shoulder.

Tom Hanks 'wasted fan' photo

The fan also appears face down in his pizza, while Hanks looks on confused.

Hanks plays along with the gag, laughing and pointing as the man pretends to be asleep on his shoulder, having taken the star’s glasses.

The photos have been viewed over four million times since they were uploaded to Imgur earlier this week.

A post on Reddit linking to the photos read: “My friend met Tom Hanks, stole his glasses and pretended to be wasted.”

Tom Hanks 'wasted fan' photo

It is currently unclear who the fan is, or where the photo was taken, but Hanks has recently been on vacation in Fargo, North Dakota, with his wife Rita Wilson.

Tom Hanks recently announced plans to produce a new film about the assassination of John F Kennedy.

The actor will next be seen opposite Halle Berry in Cloud Atlas, to be released on October 26.

First look: Snooki leaves hospital with her baby boy Lorenzo… who has a lush head of hair just like his mom

Via Daily Mail: 



Giving birth to your first child is a moment the majority of parents treasure of the rest of their lives.

And luckily, or perhaps not, Jersey Shore star Snooki has had the second she welcomed son Lorenzo into the world immortalised on film forever.

Instead of opting for a private birth, the 24-year-old reality star invited MTV cameras into the labour room to film the intimate moment.

Protective mother: Snooki was spotted leaving the hospital in a wheelchair while clutching on to her baby son LorenzoProtective mother: Snooki was spotted leaving the hospital in a wheelchair while clutching on to her baby son Lorenzo

Smile for the camera: MTV crew members were on hand to capture Snooki's journey every step of the waySmile for the camera: MTV crew members were on hand to capture Snooki’s journey every step of the way


And while they were kicked out shortly before little Lorenzo made his first appearance, Snooki’s fiance Jionni captured the entire birth on camera for an upcoming episode of Jersey Shore spin-off show Snooki & JWOWW.

A source told RadarOnline: ‘Viewers will see Snooki in labor and the camera crew was kicked out as she was about to give birth. However, Snooki’s fiance, Jionni LaValle, was using a personal camcorder and he carried on filming.

‘Lorenzo was ready for his proud parents to show him off to the world and was filmed hours after the birth. It was done very tastefully and with respect to Snooki and other patients at the New Jersey hospital.’

Embracing motherhood: Snooki told her Twitter fans that she's loving breastfeeding her son Embracing motherhood: Snooki told her Twitter fans that she’s loving breastfeeding her son

Snooki was spotted leaving hospital yesterday – two days after giving birth to her son.

The star, wearing a bright pink spotted dress, was wheeled out of the St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New Jersey, with her little bundle of joy in her arms.

The sighing came as Snooki today tweeted the first snap of herself since giving birth in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Reformed party girl: The star has described herself as an 'old lady' Reformed party girl: The star has described herself as an ‘old lady’


New life awaits: Snooki has said life after labour isn't very 'glamorous'New life awaits: Snooki has said life after labour isn’t very ‘glamorous’


Bright! Snooki's pink-trimmed motor was spotted parked up outside the hospitalBright! Snooki’s pink-trimmed motor was spotted parked up outside the hospital


The 24-year-old was snuggled up in a leopard print blanket – and she also shared a picture inside her little man’s nursery, which features his name spelled out over his leopard print changing table, captioning it: ‘My world.’


She added: ‘Lorenzo is even cuter today. I’m so lucky.’

It also seems Snooki has had a change of heart about breastfeeding.

After expressing her concerns about it just months before giving birth – she shared today how she loves nursing baby Lorenzo.

She's coming home: Snooki's belongings were seen being wheeled out of St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New JerseyShe’s coming home: Snooki’s belongings were seen being wheeled out of St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New Jersey


'I'm legit an old lady': New mother Snooki snuggles up in leopard print robe in first picture since giving birth‘I’m legit an old lady’: New mother Snooki snuggles up in leopard print robe in first picture since giving birth


Sneak peek: The reality star also shared a snap inside baby Lorenzo's nurserySneak peek: The reality star also shared a snap inside baby Lorenzo’s nursery


The revelation came after one fan asked her on Twitter: ‘Are you nursing? If so shout it out proud!’

Snooki duly replied: ‘I love nursing my little man!’

Back in June the MTV star told Good Morning America that she was nervous about the idea of breastfeeding.

‘I’m just scared. My friend did and she said it was so painful…but I definitely want to pump because it’s the best nutrients for the baby.

But somewhat apprehensively she added: ‘It’s kind of like you’re a cow and you’re just milking.’

But since giving birth over the weekend to her son, 24-year-old Snooki, real name Nicole Polizzi, has had a change of heart.

‘All the pain and anxiety is so worth it. Xoxo,’ she went on.

Fan: Snooki also revealed she is enjoying nursing her little man after initially expressing fears over breastfeedingFan: Snooki also revealed she is enjoying nursing her little man after initially expressing fears over breastfeeding


Earlier Snooki shared a picture of herself on Twitter, writing: ‘Snuggled up in my leopard print robe. I’m legit an old lady. Rockin the diapers with that old lady gangsta lean.’

Snooki had managed to glue on her huge fake eyelashes, apply eye make-up and brush her hair into her trademark beehive, however.

‘Hardly any sleep but SO worth it!’ the diminutive Guidette added, although she has also found plenty of time to update her Twitter page since the birth.

She has not yet posted any photos of the newborn as she has probably negotiated a lucrative deal for a first look at the tot with a magazine.

‘I am SO IN LOVE with my son Lorenzo Dominic! I had my little man last night, healthy at 6lbs! HE’S MY WORLD!’ Snooki said on Sunday.

An eye for detail: Fans asked 'did you rock your lashes during the birth? Lol' An eye for detail: Fans asked ‘did you rock your lashes during the birth? Lol’

Polizzi and fiance Jionni LaValle had their their first child shortly before 3am on Sunday at St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, New Jersey.

A Polizzi representative told MTV: ‘The world just got another Guido! Lorenzo Dominic LaValle has entered the world weighing 6 pounds, 5 ounces. Nicole, Jionni and Enzo are doing great!’

Snooki took a break from tweeting during the birth, but was soon back updating her fans saying: ‘Post birth isn’t so comfy and glamorous. But my son is FABULOUS.’

Delivery!: A large wooden stork was hammered into the front lawn with an announcement of Snooki and Jionni's new baby, Lorenzo. Delivery!: A large wooden stork was hammered into the front lawn with an announcement of Snooki and Jionni’s new baby, Lorenzo.


Home sweet home: The house of Snooki's fiance, Jionni LaValle.Home sweet home: The house of Snooki’s fiance, Jionni LaValle.

The happy couple: Snooki and Jionni back in JulyThe happy couple: Snooki and Jionni back in July

200-year-old ‘monster larva’ mystery solved

via Fox News: 


Monster Larva.jpg

For nearly two centuries, scientists have pulled so-called “monster larva” from the guts of fish and wondered what these thick-bodied creatures looked like as grown-ups. Now one biologist believes he has finally matched the larva with its adult counterpart.

“It’s very exciting to have solved a nearly 200-year-old conundrum,” Keith Crandall, a biology professor at George Washington University, said in a statement.

Drawing from genetic evidence, Crandall reported in the journal Ecology and Evolution this month that the larva, Cerataspis monstrosa, is actually a baby version of the deep-water aristeid shrimp known as Plesiopenaeus armatus.


‘It’s very exciting to have solved a nearly 200-year-old conundrum.’

– Biology professor Keith Crandall


Making this match-up between the baby and adult forms was not as easy as finding a larger version of the larva. In fact, the two couldn’t look more different, the researchers said. C. monstrosa has a thick body covered in armor with “exceptional horn ornamentation,” the researchers write.

Yellowfin and blackfin tuna and dolphins prefer this “monstrous and misshapen animal,” as the larva was called, for prey — and it was in these predators’ gut contents that scientists had encountered the monster larvae.

Its adult form, Plesiopenaeus, which calls the deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean home, looks more like a lobster.

Scientists began to suspect a link between the two in the 19th century.

“Because previous studies suggested an affinity between Cerataspis and penaeoid shrimp, and more specifically the family Aristeidae, we sampled heavily within these groups,” Crandall explained. His lab had been collecting crustacean DNA information for several years, providing a database to compare the Cerataspis DNA and make the link. They found a 99.96 percent match between the sequences of five genes for both organisms.