House votes for redone Wall Street Financial Reform Bill…GOP Senator Collins is on board….

They went home from Capital Hill tonight…

The Democrats redid some parts of the Wall Street Financial Reform Bill to

get some GOP votes…

They seem to have gotten Senator Collins back after she balked on the bill on  Monday…

Lets see if they can get to 60 votes in the senate…..

Democratic efforts to overhaul Wall Street inched closer to the finish line on Wednesday as the House approved the legislation and a key Senate Republican announced her support.

The House approved the conference report in a 237-192 vote. Nineteen Democrats voted against the measure, while three Republicans voted for it. No Republicans voted for the House version of the bill.

The three Republicans who voted for the measure were Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.), who is running for the Senate; Rep. Joseph Cao (R-La.), one of the most vulnerable Republicans in Congress; and Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.).

Many of the Democrats who voted against the measure face tough re-election fights this year or are in districts that lean Republican. They included Reps. Rick Boucher (Va.), Bobby Bright (Ala.), Travis Childers (Miss.), Mark Critz (Pa.), Tom Perriello (Va.) and Ike Skelton (Mo.).

Earlier in the day, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) said she would vote for the conference report after House and Senate negotiators reconvened late Tuesday to remove up to $19 billion in new fees on large financial firms.

Still, Senate Democrats said they would need to delay a final vote on the 2,300-page bill until after the July 4 recess. The party has yet to clinch the 60 votes necessary to overcome procedural hurdles, with a handful of crucial Democratic and Republican senators yet to announce how they will vote.

The legislation aims to prevent future taxpayer-funded bailouts; boost regulation over credit cards, mortgages and other products; regulate the $600 trillion derivatives market; and increase oversight of broad financial system risks, among other measures.

Republicans continued to criticize the legislation, arguing that it doesn’t do enough to end the problem of firms that are viewed as “too big to fail,” and remains silent on regulation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two mortgage giants taken over by the government in 2008.

More…..

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More on the Media Battle between Rolling Stone, Michael Hastings and the Veteran War reporters…..

I blogged this a few days ago……

I knew it was gonna get hot….

Here’s more from Politico…..

On the battle between the ‘drop in’s’ from Rolling Stone who think war reporter’s have been seduced and gone over to the other side….

And the war reporters who argue that they have been given a trust after earning their ‘bones’ when they report…and they don’t need the drop in’s to spoil that trust in reporters from the military by breaking the rules in the reporters relationship with the soldiers………

The title page of Michael Hastings' profile on Gen. Stanley McChrystal is pictured. | AP Photo

[ Michael Hastings’ profile on Gen. Stanley McChrystal has prompted a debate on journalistic silence. ]
On one side are bloggers, freelancers and familiar press critics such as New York Times columnist Frank Rich, who say that by not abiding by traditional media conventions Hastings told an essential truth about McChrystal and his aides that beat reporters would never have revealed.

On the other are veteran war correspondents such as Lara Logan and columnists such as David Brooks who say that Hastings betrayed the people he was writing about by unfairly focusing on the banter they use to cope with months of combat rather than the larger truths they have to convey about the war in Afghanistan.

The fight escalated after Hastings’s appearance on CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” where he said he was “positive” that the rest of the media had been protecting McChrystal with a series of “glowing profiles” that helped them preserve access. Logan, CBS News’s chief foreign correspondent, came on minutes later to call this view “insulting and arrogant,” saying that beat reporting involved “an element of trust” that he had betrayed.

Hastings’s Rolling Stone colleague, Matt Taibbi, came back with a piece titled “Lara Logan, You Suck,” which was itself put through the fact-checking wringer by Daily Finance’s Jeff Bercovici.

And so on.

The oxygen for this fight is the ambiguity over just what the ground rules were for Hastings’s reporting – ambiguity that appears to come, at least from the evidence available at the moment, from a collision of two journalistic cultures.

The morning the story broke, Rolling Stone executive editor Eric Bates was on “Morning Joe” stating unequivocally that “they knew when we were on the record.” He later told POLITICO, “We ran everything by them in our fact checking process as we always do. So I think they had a sense of what was coming. But this was all on the record, and they spent a lot of time with our reporter so I think they knew that they had said it.”

Then, days after McChrystal’s ouster, military officials began to come forward anonymously, telling the Washington Post that “many of the sessions were off-the-record and intended to give [Hastings] a sense” of how the team operated. But Rolling Stone’s editors flatly dispute that claim, and the irony of the officials’ own unwillingness to go on the record to make such accusations was widely noted. “A lot of things were said off the record that we didn’t use,” Bates told the Post. “We abided by all the ground rules in every instance.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0610/39254.html#ixzz0sOliNF6K

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Zoe Saldana is engaged……

Well…….

Congratulations to the girl……

This guy is getting a beautiful woman……

She may be a Loser on the big screen, but Zoe Saldana is a winner in love.

The “Losers” star is engaged to her long-time boyfriend Keith Britton,…UsWeekly.com reports.

A source tells the gossip Web site that the 32-year-old Jersey girl “is thrilled” about her upcoming nuptials.

“They’ve been together forever,” the source told UsWeekly.com. “They’re a great couple.”

The 32-year-old “Avatar” star has been quietly dating her boyfriend, the CEO of My Fashion Database, for ten years……Zoe Saldana and Keith Britton are engaged to be married. The duo has been together for 10 years.

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Sen. Brownback steps into the ‘Buy American’ group that back Boeing in the Air Force KC-X Aerial Tanker contract bid…

[ SEN. SAM BROWNBACK said that he hopes to see language requiring the Pentagon to account for roughly $5 billion in subsidies EADS received to develop the Airbus A330, the plane that the EADSs tanker offering is based on. ]

Senator Sam Brownback is piggybacking a recent decission from the world Trade Organiztion that ruled that EADS and Airbus received governmenet substies

to develop the A-330……which originally won the first competition  ( which was throw out ) for the future Air Force Aerial Tanker…..

Like the Marine One contract rollback…

This is all about buy American….

While the whole thing isn’t that simple…..

I still dodn’t understand the basis of the argument….

If the Airbus A-330 is picked it will be built in Alabama…..

The Marine One Chopper would have been built in upstate New York….(the 9 choppers they have where put together there )…

And all by AMERICANS…..

If a Boeing or Sikorsky aircraft is picked on the second go round…..

They will be manufactures in the US…but even those aircraft will have FOREIGN parts in them……

[  An A-330 tanker practices refueling  F-18’s  ]


Brownback wants the Pentagon to factor in the subsidies that were used to develop the A-330 into the cost numbers for the KC-X when the picking is doine for the new tanker……

I don’t get it….

Most of the people going to work in this country every day drive foreign cars….

Made in America….by Americans….

We’re trying to sell F-35’s to a number of countries…

But we don’t want their aircraft here?

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Teagan Goddards Political Dictonary……How good are you?

Political words have the power to confound, obscure, and even inspire. Taegan Goddard’s Political Dictionary takes apart the language of politics to uncover its deeper meanings and broader significance.

Search for more at the Site…..

Sergeant-at-Arms

The U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate each have a sergeant-at-arms, whose job it is to maintain order in the legislative chamber.

In the Senate, the sergeant-at-arms can also be instructed to request the presence of senators if not enough senators are present to meet a quorum.  If the motion to instruct the sergeant-at-arms does not bring in enough senators, the sergeant-at-arms can be instructed to write arrest warrants for all absent senators and is then required to hunt them down and bring them to the floor.

Vote-a-rama

U.S. Senate rules include a special section for consideration of the annual Budget resolution. The Budget is not subject to filibuster, but all amendments must be germane and are voted on consecutively without real debate.

During a vote-a-rama, each amendment is considered and voted on for about 10 minutes until they are finished with all amendments. It’s an exhausting process that many senators have said makes it impossible to know what is actually being considered.

Keith Hennessey: “The vote-a-rama is an unusual cultural institution within the Senate. All 100 Senators are on the floor, in the cloakrooms, or right outside the Senate Chamber for hours and hours upon end. Another 100-ish staff are packed onto tiny staff benches in the rear of the Chamber, one for Republican staff and another for Democratic staff. Everyone is usually exhausted during the vote-a-rama, which comes near the end of an arduous and usually conflict-ridden legislative battle.”

Shivercrats

Shivercrats were a conservative faction of the Texas Democratic Party in the 1950s named for Texas Gov. Allan Shivers (D).

The term was first used in 1952 after Shivers backed Republican Dwight Eisenhower for president over Democrat Adlai Stevenson.

Interestingly, Lyndon B. Johnson initially aligned himself with the Shivercrats as a U.S. Senator but increasingly sided with liberals on domestic policy after becoming president in 1963. Most of the Shivercrats ended up leaving the Democratic party as the liberal-moderate faction took control of the state party after 1970.

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Not again!…..The Woman involved with Al Gore in Oregon has the the stained pants!…and DNA results…..

Al Gore was really pissed at his boss Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky affair…

Now the is a report that a Portland massage theripist that allleges a sexual assault has DNA evidence in gthe form a stain on pants…

The police say they will REOPEN the investigation….

First keeping the stained dress for his old boss…

Now keeping the stained pants for him?

What is this world coming to with politicians?


Police announced that they “will re-open and investigate a Portland massage therapist’s allegations that former Vice President Al Gore sexually assaulted her at a downtown hotel in October 2006,” the Portland Oregonian reports.

Said a Gore spokesman: “Further investigation into this matter will only benefit Mr. Gore.”

The moves comes as the woman told the National Enquirer that she demanded a full police investigation of her complaint. The woman is photographed holding the black pants she wore that night. She’s quoted saying she paid for a DNA analysis…….

More…..

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Space Shuttle Endevour’s last night flight Photo……

From Digg….

astronomy.com Space Shuttle Endeavour lit up a predawn sky above Space Coast with a 4:14 EST launch from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. The shuttle’s last scheduled night launch began a 13-day flight to the International Space Station and the final year of shuttle operations.  ( Feb. 11, 2010 )

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Senate Confirms General Patreaus for the Afghan military campaign…..

Congratulations General !..

It WAS a demotion…

But your country needs you…..

Really …….the guy seems to be the best hope for the Afghan military campaign….

Good Luck!…..

You will need that ….and bit more……

Gen. David H. Petraeus was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate Wednesday as the new Afghan war commander, replacing Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal after his ousterover controversial remarks in a Rolling Stone magazine article.

The 99-0 Senate vote followed aconfirmation hearing Tuesday in which members of the Senate Armed Services Committee praised Petraeus’s leadership of the war in Iraq and lauded him as the nation’s premier warrior-diplomat.

President Obama released a statement expressing gratitude for the swift confirmation. “General Petraeus is a pivotal part of our effort to succeed in Afghanistan – and in our broader effort to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat al Qaeda — and he has my full confidence,” the president said.

Petraeus told the committee members that the Afghan war, which he said is being waged against “an industrial-strength insurgency,” is likely to get worse before it gets better.

“My sense is that the tough fighting will continue,” Petraeus said. “Indeed, it may get more intense.”

Petraeus said he would adhere to McChrystal’s strategy of trying to avoid civilian deaths in Afghanistan, a keystone of the U.S. military’s counterinsurgency approach. But in a nod to U.S. troops who have complained that McChrystaltied their hands by limiting tactics, Petraeus said he would “look very hard” at how directives issued by the former commander were being implemented.

“I will continue the emphasis on reducing the loss of innocent civilian life to an absolute minimum in the course of military operations,” Petraeus said, adding that the rules of engagement for U.S. troops are “fairly standard.”

A separate “tactical directive,” he said, was designed to govern the use of air-launched weapons “because, of course, if you drop a bomb on a house, if you’re not sure who’s in it, you can kill a lot of innocent civilians in a hurry.”

The general said that it is imperative that the directives are implemented uniformly throughout the force, and that “when our troops and our Afghan partners are in a tough spot . . . it’s a moral imperative that we use everything we have to ensure that they get out.”

In addition to discussing his strategy, Petraeus took care, both inside and outside the hearing room, to show how he would try to avoid the rifts among the U.S. military, senior civilian leadership and the Afghan government that in the end led to McChrystal’s undoing.

As he drove to the hearing, for example, Petraeus had his third phone conversation in less than a week with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

Afterward, he flew home to Tampa, where he hosted Vice President Biden and his wife for dinner

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Mariano Rivera…The Yankee’s Best Dam Closer in Baseball

I’m a Mets fan…

But NO ONE can take anything from Mariano Rivera….

As the Mets annoucers have said in the past….

The guy thrown just about one pitch…

The batters know it…

Everybody oin the ball park knows it..

Yea…… he gets a whole lot of people out….

Time and time again…

Just about every game….

Every year…..

“I feel a tremendous load on my shoulders,” Rivera recalled this past March, sitting in front of his locker at the Yankees’ spring-training camp in Tampa, Fla. Rivera was trying to convey something quite different from what that expression normally means. A closer, who generally comes into a game only in the highly pressurized ninth inning to finish off the opponent, must welcome the kind of burden most of us — and even some otherwise very effective pitchers — flee. “I know,” Rivera went on, “I am going to have a good opportunity to pitch.” Closers normally pitch one inning. That night, Rivera navigated his way through a supremely tense ninth inning. And then the 10th. And then, with the score still tied, the 11th. “It was always a battle,” Rivera said. “It was a beautiful game.” In the bottom of the 11th, Yankees third baseman Aaron Boone won the game, and the series, with a home run. And if he hadn’t? “Tell you what,” Rivera said, flashing a most unworshipful grin, “I would have gone out there again.”

In his 16th year with the Yankees, Mariano Rivera, who is 40, has become a kind of living god of baseball. While his regular-season statistics are remarkable, in postseason play, where the pressure is at its highest, he is sui generis. He holds the lowest earned-run average in postseason history (0.74) among pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched. On 30 occasions he has gone more than one inning to record a save; over the same period, all other pitchers combined have done so only a few more times more than Rivera alone. In 2009, when he was thought to be slowing down and yielding his place to the Red Sox phenom Jonathan Papelbon, he pitched 16 innings in postseason play and gave up one run, while extending his career postseason saves record to 39 as the Yankees won the World Series. (Papelbon gave up a two-run lead in the ninth to end the Red Sox’ season in the divisional round against the Angels.) Rivera, when pressed, attributes his gifts to providence; people of a more secular bent say that he combines one of the single greatest pitches baseball has ever seen — his cutter, or cut fastball — with an inner calm, and a focus, no less unusual and no less inimitable.

Read more from a Sunday New York Times Magazine piece…..

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Daniel…..6-Time Wimbledon Champion Roger Federer loses in the Wimbledon Quarterfinals after a disastrous Performance

Hi all!

Tomas Berdych celebrated his win over Roger Federer 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4, in the Wimbledon quarterfinals on Wednesday.

[ Tomas Berdych celebrated his win over Roger Federer 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4, in the Wimbledon quarterfinals on Wednesday ]

IT IS A REAL STUNNER. Probably one of the biggest Sporting Upsets in modern History. 6-Time Swiss Wimbledon Champion Roger Federer lost for ONLY the second time in 7 years at the All England Championships in Wimbledon.

He made easy Unforced Errors and never seemed to get really into this Match. Bottom Line: A disastrous Performance.

The Result: A loss 3:6, 6:3, 1:6, 4:6 against Czech Tomas Berdych.

Federer will never be the Nr. 1 again. His Downturn has just begun.

Daniel G.

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Another recession…or a humdrum recovery?

I vote for a humdrum recovery…..

Here’s somemore people on the question…..

A few economists are saying that we will soon have a second recession. Although I expect the labor market recovery will take years, it will be a recovery nonetheless.

Double-dip recessions have occurred in the past. The severe 1981-2 recession began only a year after the 1980 recession ended. The Great Depression of the 1930s also came in two phases: 1929-33 and 1937-8.

The first phase of this recession seemed to end in 2009, when real gross domestic product and employment stopped falling in the second half of the year. It is certainly possible that in 2010 we will see a quarter in which real G.D.P. falls a bit. Measured G.D.P. increased so sharply at the end of 2009, with hardly any improvement in the labor market, that economists have beensuspicious that real G.D.P. was overstated.

National employment will be lower this month than it was in May, largely because many employees are finished working on the 2010 Census. But a small one-time drop in G.D.P. or layoffs at the Census Bureau should not be confused with a new recession, let alone a return to the economic deterioration we experienced after the summer of 2008.

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Round #2 in New York State’s Budget Battle……

Yea folks….

It’s still going on….

Governor Paterson has vetoed $419 million from thr Legislature’s budget…

The Democrats don’t have the votes to oberide the veto’s …

Since the GOP is siding with the Governor to stop the changes the Democrat’s rewrote into the budget….

And Paterson has probable, in-coming Governor Andrew Cuomo, and the GOP on his side…..

Follow all that?

If you don’t…..

There’s more……

Gov. Paterson is getting help in his budget battle with Democratic leaders from an unlikely ally: the GOP.

Senate Republicans on Tuesday all but ruled out overriding the governor’s threatened budget vetoes – meaning Paterson can trim the pork and extra spending Democrats stuffed into the spending bill.

Senate GOP boss Dean Skelos trashed legislative Democrats for adopting “an irresponsible, unbalanced budget.”

“They should not expect or count on Senate Republicans to bail them out of the mess that they have made of this budget and the damage they are inflicting on taxpayers,” Skelos said.

Without the Republicans, Senate Democrats lack the votes to overturn Paterson’s line-item vetoes.

An angry Paterson already vetoed $419 million in extra school aid the Legislature tried to add to the budget.

And he’s filling up his pen for plenty more. Paterson officials were readying the paperwork for a whopping 6,900 vetoes.

Albany’s dysfunction and pettiness reached new lows yesterday when lawmakers refused to accept Paterson’s nonbudget bills and the Senate refused to hold confirmation votes on political nominees.

“You have to use whatever tools you have to negotiate,” said Democratic Senate chief John Sampson.

But Paterson insisted he’s done horse-trading.

“I’m done talking to legislative leaders,” Paterson told The Associated Press. “I am doing the vetoes. As far as I am concerned, this budget process is over.”

But lawmakers still have to authorize new taxes and revenue raisers to balance the already approved spending plan – a task that could prove contentious.

Two Senate Democrats refused to say if they’d back the proposal if lawmakers can’t cut a deal to allow SUNY and CUNY to set their own tuition rates.

And Paterson still wants an agreement capping property tax increases and creating a contingency plan in case $1 billion in federal Medicaid cash doesn’t come through as anticipated.

Paterson is heading to Washington today to press for the Medicaid funding – a key reason Silver says there is no need for a contingency plan.

“I think it’s wrong of us to go to Washington and say we’d like to have the money, but if we don’t have the money, if you don’t give it to us, we can handle it on our own,” Silver scoffed.

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Lautenberg and Landreiu fight over the Senate Appropriations Security Subcommittee spot….

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.)


Landreiu disagrees with the leadership in favoring handing the sport to NJ senator Frank Lautenberg……

Because Lautenberg retired form the senate so years back…then came back to fill an open spot when Sen. Robert Torricelli (D) got in legal trouble back in New Jersey…

Landreiu is actually senior to him in the Committee…

Inoyue has the ability to make the move regardless…But will have to work a deal with

Landreiu in public….

Lauthenberg will want the spot since he is from New Jersey, and deals with issues concerning the New York/New Jersey  metro area…… one of the prime targets for terrorism in the past……

The good amount of his state residents  live within 25 miles of New York City……..

“This subcommittee is particularly important to New Jersey, which is home to the most at-risk two miles in America for a terrorist attack, and families in my state will never forget the horror of Sept. 11, 2001,” he added.

“I look forward to leading this subcommittee and advancing America’s homeland security infrastructure.”

Other lawmakers are keeping their distance from the battle.

“I don’t know — it’s a leadership decision,” said Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, which has authorizing power over domestic security issues.

The Appropriations Committee’s Homeland Security subcommittee is powerful because it decides how to spend federal money on disasters and to prevent terrorism.

Senate Democrats will reorganize panel seats after the election. Some may gain new chairmen and members depending on which incumbents lose their races.

If Republicans pick up enough seats, the partisan ratios of the panels will change, eliminating Democratic seats.

Inouye will tell Reid who he thinks should be the 12 subcommittee chairmen. Reid will then submit a committee organizing resolution to the Democratic Conference to ratify by a vote.

The conference usually approves the chairmanships and committee memberships proposed by the leader.

Lautenberg could make an appeal to Reid to remain chairman of the Homeland Security subcommittee.

Lautenberg could win a secret vote of his peers because of his length of service. He is a more reliable Democratic vote than Landrieu, so other senators may want to reward him rather than her.

Landrieu will argue that the conference should not forgo the seniority system, a powerful message in the tradition-conscious chamber.

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President Obama meets with Latino Lawmakers on Immigration…..Discuses how to advance a Bill…..

The Dog thinks this is good politiics…

But I’m doubtfull any legislation will be forwarded….

Let alone passed….. till after next year….

The lift is too heavy….

Besides everytime they start talking about the bill …

They send more cops, soliders or fencing to the border…

By the way…….

The Border Patrol enforcemenet chief  has issued a order to the troops

” ordering his agency to focus on deporting criminals and those who pose a national security threat, rather than on pursuing people such as “immediate family members of U.S. citizens” and those caring for children. ”

Lets see that plays……

……Advocates have heard assurances before.

Deepak Bhargava of the Washington-based Center for Community Change was among those who met with the president Monday. In an interview afterward, Bhargava said Obama “was unambiguous about his commitment. The question is whether the actions will match the words over the next few weeks.”

In their hourlong meeting Tuesday, lawmakers and the president debated a strategy for passing a bill in the coming months — no small task given that members are increasingly focused on the upcoming election, and national polls show broad support for Arizona’s strict new immigration law.

With conservatives energized, angry and likely to storm to the polls, Democrats fear they will lose even more seats in Congress than a president’s party typically does at the halfway point in his term.

Voting on an immigration bill in a lame-duck session has some advantages in proponents’ eyes. Outgoing members of Congress would have little reason to fear backing a controversial bill. And those who won might be more likely to support it, since they wouldn’t have to face voters for another two years — when Obama is up for reelection and likely to draw progressives to the polls.

In addition, if Republicans make major gains in November, an immigration overhaul could be impossible in 2011 or 2012.

While running for president, Obama pledged to act on immigration in 2009. That deadline came and went. But Obama won two-thirds of the Latino vote in 2008 and has no wish to alienate a growing constituency.

Raising the issue anew allows Obama to mollify his Latino supporters. But it also puts Republicans in a tough spot. Neither party can afford to write off a Latino community whose influence is growing.

Forcing a vote on immigration would give Republicans a difficult choice: They could vote against the bill and risk antagonizing Latinos, or vote yes and invite the wrath of “tea party” activists and other conservatives opposed to what they view as amnesty for illegal immigrants.

In his private meetings this week, Obama has emphasized that Republicans are the main force blocking a bill.

“He said over and over again the Republican obstruction was the key to preventing this from getting done,” said Eliseo Medina, international executive vice president of the Service Employees International Union, who took part in a meeting with Obama on Monday.

More….

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Wonder Woman gets a DC Comics ‘make over’…..

Wonder Woman in her classic (art by Nicola Scott) and new (art by Jim Lee) looks.

[ Wonder Woman in her classic (art by Nicola Scott) and new (art by Jim Lee) looks. ]

The classic dark haired beauty is being reintroduced after having a contemporary ‘makeover’…..

After 69 years of fighting crime in her trademark red-and-gold bustier and star-studded hip-huggers, Wonder Woman is getting a modern-day makeover.

In the latest issue of the iconic super heroine’s comic book series, which hit stores Wednesday, she is sporting a new, darker, more modern costume that would take away Superman’s super-breath.

“It’s a new contemporary look that matches the storyline of the series,” Dan DiDio, co-Publisher of DC Comics, told the News. “We wanted to reinvigorate a character that has had a [look developed] in the 1940s for the current audience and hopefully attract a new audience.”

More…..

Not bad looking for being 70 tears old……..

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Lebron James is available…..The New York Knicks are interested…..So is Miami and other teams….

Every move the Knicks have made over the last two seasons leads up to midnight on July 1, when two-time NBA MVP LeBron James hits the free agent market.

The young mega star is in the drivers seat…

Money maybe a major consideration….

But so will player chemistry and a chance to get a championship ring…..

The Knicks don’t rate high those categories…..

But they would led in the money spot being in New York…..

Few, if any, reports give the Knicksmuch of a chance, and yet the club’s brain trust remains confident that it can convince James to make the jump to the NBA‘s biggest market.

The Knicks will have their much-anticipated meeting with James Thursday afternoon in Ohio, hours after he finally becomes a free agent at midnight. There is a possibility that the sit-down could take place at James’ mansion in Akron.

The Nets are batting leadoff and will be followed by the Knicks, whose traveling party includes team president Donnie Walsh, head coachMike D’Antoni, Garden chairmanJames Dolan and former player Allan Houston. The Bulls, Clippers, Heat and Cavs have also scheduled meetings with James in Ohio.

The Knicks are fighting long odds in their bid to land James but feel they have several strong selling points –New York City, the flexibility to sign another “max” free agent and enough salary-cap space to add another elite free agent the following summer. The team will also impress upon James that he has a chance to build his brand and establish his legacy by winning in New York.

The tough sell for the Knicks, though, is convincing James that he can win titles in New York. The franchise hasn’t raised a championship banner since 1973, and under Dolan’s ownership, the club has suffered through nine straight losing seasons. Expect several teams, particularly Riley and the Heat, to stress to James that joining the Knicks could be a career killer.

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