April 29, 2010

Arizona's strict immigration law faces tough tests

Posted: 04:00 AM ET



As the furor against Arizona's strict new immigration law escalates, immigrant advocates are preparing to move the fight to the courtroom, where their legal challenges have sunk other high-profile laws against illegal migrants.

The Los Angeles attorney who successfully challenged Texas and California efforts to bar illegal migrants from public services said this week that the Arizona law was similarly doomed because it unconstitutionally attempts to usurp federal jurisdiction to regulate immigration and could violate guarantees of equal protection with selective enforcement against certain ethnic groups.

The law makes it a state crime for illegal migrants to be in Arizona and requires police to check for evidence of legal status.

"The Arizona law is doomed to the dustpan of other unconstitutional efforts by local government to regulate immigration, which is a uniquely federal function," said Peter Schey, president of the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law in Los Angeles.

But the attorney who helped write the Arizona law said he carefully crafted the measure to avoid those constitutional issues. Kris Kobach, a University of Missouri-Kansas City law professor who handled immigration law and border security under U.S. Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft during the Bush administration, said the law does not seek to regulate immigration but merely adds state penalties for what are already federal crimes.

Under the legal doctrine of "concurrent enforcement," he said, states are allowed to ban what is already prohibited by federal law. As an example, he said, the courts have upheld efforts by California, Arizona and other states to enact sanctions against employers who hire illegal migrants.


Filed under: immigration

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April 28, 2010

LKL Exclusive – To the Class of 2010 Graduates

Posted: 06:00 PM ET

Ellyn Spragins is a speaker and author whose new book What I Know Now About Success: Letters from Extraordinary Women to Their Younger Selves was published on April 27th.

Dear Class of 2010 Graduates,

Soon, commencement speakers are going to hold sway over the advice racket. So I’m sneaking mine in now, just before the tsunami of entertaining, clichéd, quotable, original, soporific and lively guidance crashes over your caps and gowns.

I’m pretty sure you won’t hear this anywhere else. First, it’s advice designed specifically for women who want to succeed. It’s not PC to say that success is different for women than for men. But after interviewing 33 highly successful women, such as fashion icon Diane von Furstenberg, makeup artist Trish McEvoy, Food Network star Paula Deen and personal finance guru Suze Orman, on what they wish they’d known about success, I think it is. Also, my advice isn’t socially acceptable. Your mom would not approve. At least not in public. But here it is:

Be selfish. One of the key messages accomplished women wanted to give their younger selves: Don’t put your friends’, boss’s, husband’s and children’s happiness so far ahead of your own that you neglect your dreams.

Be bad. Attention members of the Good Girls Club: This is for you. You follow the rules, get good grades and wait to be noticed for it. Highly successful women know that “being good” usually means adhering to someone else’s idea of what you should be–or could be.

Be dyslexic. In their quest for perfection, many young women have an overdeveloped ability to dwell on their weaknesses. But superstars who struggled with learning, such as Shark Tank judge Barbara Corcoran, cosmetics entrepreneur Bobbi Brown and Ambassador Nancy Brinker, discovered, often painfully, that it was critically important to focus on their strengths. What about their potentially crippling weakness? Meh. They found a way around—or found someone else to do what they couldn’t.

Study your gut. Credentials be damned! It was surprising how many smart, talented successes wished their younger selves had followed their instincts or listened to and trusted their gut. Not a single woman counseled, “Do more number crunching” or “Get more advanced degrees.” Since no one has probably taught you how to hear your gut, you’ll have to teach yourself. Then you’ll need to honor its messages by acting on them.

Don’t be men in pink. Male culture still rules at most American companies for the simple reason that men shaped them and men, in the vast majority of cases, still run them. So it’s remarkably easy for women to absorb the prevailing—i.e. male—definitions of successful behavior and leadership in their work. Fine, if they fit. But many of the gifted women I talked to had to buck the customary testosterone-tinged corporate culture to lay claim to their own authentic leadership. “Don’t be men in pink” means: Resist being recruited by motivations and goals that don’t truly speak to your heart.

Ladies, congratulations and may real success be yours.

Gentlemen, I wish you the best as well.


Ellyn Spragins

Filed under: LKL Web Exclusive

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Crime writer Aphrodite Jones on Michael Jackson’s death

Posted: 04:26 PM ET

Best-selling true crime writer Aphrodite Jones has been covering Michael Jackson for years.  On her TV program, True Crime with Aphrodite Jones, she has set out to prove that the allegations of child abuse and the fallout from his criminal trial were as responsible for his death last year as the drugs he was taking.

True Crime with Aphrodite Jones: Michael Jackson airs Thursday, April 29th on Investigation Discovery.  Jones spoke to the LKL Blog about her thoughts on the Jackson case.  The interview has been edited for clarity and content.

LKL Blog: You’ve spent years looking at Michael Jackson, his legal troubles and the man that he was.  In terms of connecting the dots for your program, tell me a little about what you learned.

Aphrodite Jones: I think what I learned is that we really forgot, while Michael Jackson was alive, that he was a human being.  We made him into a caricature.  The interesting for me is that nobody after the acquittal of Michael Jackson turned around and said, “gee, wait a minute, we reported only what we could to dig up dirt and never considered that this man has no place to turn now.”  Frankly, the media ran after him harder after the acquittal.  

It all got turned around on Jackson, in a big way.  I think people don’t realize – when Mihcael Jackson did anything, like the baby-dangling incident, it was blown out of such proportion because everybody made him out to be a freak.

LKL Blog: There’s no denying his talent but he was such a polarizing person.  People just wanted to know every detail – why do you think people had that kind of reaction to him?

Jones: First of all, Michael Jackson broke the color barrier.  And he did it in such a way, with his music, with his friendships and later with his vitiligo.  Here’s someone whose life was dedicated to not looking at races, being of only one color.  His music united the world.  He went to every country in the world with his music.  If his music landed there, he usually went.  And he embraced people of every culture.  Not many entertainers when you think about that really have that kind of stronghold or embrace of people in China, people in Singapore, people in Thailand.  My book [Michael Jackson Conspiracy] has been translated around the world.  In Japan, China, Taiwan, France, Italy, all over Europe.

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Filed under: LKL Web Exclusive • Michael Jackson

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Peter, Paul and Mary's Last Soaring Song

Posted: 02:58 PM ET


By Quinn Brown
LKL Producer

It's hard to understate the importance and impact of folk music.  What started with Woody Guthrie and then was popularized by New York's Greenwich Village scene in the ‘60’s (and its luminaries including Pete Seeger, Karen Dalton, and Bob Dylan), echoes to this day with any artist that picks up an instrument and sings something besides "baby, please don't go."

Folk music is defiant, topical, rousing, poetic.  Its influence reached the likes of Johnny Cash, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Marley, The Beatles, Public Enemy, Iggy Pop, Joni Mitchell, Bono, and countless others.

As pervasive as the music is, it may never have reached the masses if not for Peter Yarrow, Noel "Paul" Stookey and Mary Travers - Peter, Paul and Mary.  For those who could not handle the lo-fi recordings of Guthrie or the aural snarl of Dylan, the folk trio was more than just palatable.  Their three-part harmony was a symphony of voice (and a lone acoustic guitar).  And the masses took notice.

So it is fitting that the last testament of the folk legends ("Where Have All the Flowers Gone", "Puff the Magic Dragon", "Leaving on a Jet Plane") is Peter, Paul and Mary with Symphony Orchestra:  The Prague Sessions (Rhino Records).  Over their five-decade career, the group performed with an orchestra around 30 times and, as Yarrow says, "Those were special to Mary.  She had a strong feeling about those concerts."

Mary Travers passed away September 16, 2009 due to complications from chemotherapy for treatment of leukemia.  The trio and longtime collaborator Robert DeCormier spent the final years of Travers' life compiling 14 live stage performances and enlisting the Czech Symphony orchestra to bring her final dream to fruition.  The result is a record of soaring sounds– voices and strings that swell to the point where the songs aren't folk so much as they are hymns.  "This feels like the last page of the photo album.  It's honoring Mary and the importance of the music we shared," says Stookey.

Peter Yarrow and Paul Stookey sat down with CNN to discuss the symphony project, Mary Travers' impact on their lives and her final days, and performing as a duo.

LKL Blog: The origins of the new album went back many years?

Peter: It was a part of our history as an extension. There was a part of our history that had not been shared. It was very special to Mary and to all of us because there was a certain kind of musical exhilaration and passion in our performances when we would perform with the symphony orchestra. These arrangements, which were done by Bob DeCormier, were the closest to it–with my objective mind making the comparison–like Puccini wrote the score. It's just characterization between the orchestra and the singers. And that gives you another sense of the dimension and the passion because it’s really well written. If it's not, it's really wrong because with folk music it has to be really right for it to work in the context with being united as you sing.

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Filed under: Entertainment • LKL Web Exclusive • Music • Paul and Mary

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LKL 25: Red meat, gin & Julia Child

Posted: 01:36 PM ET

It’s Larry King Live’s 25th anniversary and we want to share with you some of our LKL memories, what it’s like to work on the program and our favorite moments of the past 25 years of history-making television.  During the next few weeks, we’ll be posting blogs from Larry’s staffers as we count down to the program’s 25th anniversary week, beginning May 31st.  

Let us know what you think and don’t forget to rate YOUR favorite moments and enter our sweepstakes for a chance to win a trip to Los Angeles to meet Larry in person!

By LKL Senior Editorial Producer Carol Buckland

As Senior Editorial Producer for Larry King Live, it’s my responsibility (and privilege) to pre-interview most of the guests who appear on the show.  It’s a dream job.  If there’s such a thing as a Ph.D. in learning about interesting individuals, this is the best place in the world to earn it.

The list of people I’ve pre-interviewed for LKL over the years now includes hundreds of names.  Each conversation has been special.  While I value all of them, the most memorable for me was the first time I had an opportunity to speak with Julia Child.

I am not a person who impresses easily.  I can honestly say I’ve kept my cool while speaking with world leaders, A-list movie stars, best-selling authors, business moguls and intellectual powerhouses who – if their I.Q. points could be transmuted into degrees of temperature – would be able to boil water with their brains. 

But talking with Julia Child?  Gushing fan girl does not begin to describe my attitude as I approached my first pre-interview with her in December of 2000.  I mean, I grew up watching The French Chef on PBS.  I cooked (with varying degrees of success) out of her books.  I laughed myself sick at Dan Aykroyd’s impersonation of her on Saturday Night Live.  She was a role model to me.  An…idol.

I knew seven days ahead of time when I would be speaking with Julia Child.  Also aware of the pending pre-interview were every single member of my family, all my work colleagues, 99.9% of my friends, my dentist, my doorman, the produce guy at my local supermarket and just about anyone to whom I happened to speak in the week leading up to the big phone call.

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Filed under: LKL 25

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Michael Moore on LKL last night – weighs in on immigration/tea parties!

Posted: 12:35 PM ET
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His Own Words: Jesse James Reacts to Divorce Filing

Posted: 11:20 AM ET


"My whole life has been full of hard decisions.

"The decision to let my wife end our marriage, and continue the adoption of Louis on her own, has been the hardest. The love I have for Louis cannot be put to words. Not having him around to love and to hold has left a huge hole in my heart.

"Sandy is the love of my life, but considering the pain and devastation I have caused her, it would be selfish to not let her go. Right now it is time for me to beat this addiction that has taken two of the things I love the most in life.

"I have always taken great pride in proving people wrong. That time has come once again to show that I am not what everyone says I am. I know in my heart that I can be the best father possible to my four children, and the mate Sandy deserves, and realize that this is an incredible mountain to climb. But I believe that the steps I have taken in the last 30 days are the foundation for making this happen. The lifelong commitment I am making is what being a real husband and father is all about.

"I ask that you please do not judge Sandy for the things I have done. She has done no wrong. She played no part in any of this. She has been an amazing wife, mother, and best friend, for the over 6 years we have been together."


Do you think Jesse James deserves a second chance?

Filed under: Entertainment

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Sandra Bullock adopts a boy; People magazine has the exclusive!!

Posted: 08:05 AM ET

Via People

In public, Sandra Bullock has been through the best and worst of times this year – from winning her first Oscar to enduring the breakup of her marriage. In private, she was quietly keeping a joyful secret – his name is Louis, and he is her newborn son.

Bullock reveals exclusively in the new issue of PEOPLE that she is the proud mother of Louis Bardo Bullock, a 3½-month-old boy, born in New Orleans. "It's like he's always been a part of our lives," Bullock, 45, says. She and husband Jesse James, 41, began the adoption process four years ago and brought Louis home in January but decided to keep the news to themselves until after the Oscars. Their close friends and family – including James's children Sunny, 6, Jesse Jr., 12, and Chandler, 15 – were essential in keeping the adoption a secret.

Then, just 10 days after the March 7 Oscars, Bullock and James separated following reports James had cheated. Bullock says she is now adopting as a single parent.


Filed under: Adoption • Hollywood • Sandra Bullock

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Tonight on Larry King Live!

Posted: 06:00 AM ET

Donald & Melania Trump in a rare joint interview!

Go inside one of America’s most famous families! Take a rare peek at a life of privilege with the Trumps!

Plus, “The Donald” weighs in on Bret Michaels, Sandra Bullock and more!

Filed under: Entertainment

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