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REVIEW: In FX’s Fargo, the Devil Goes Up to Minnesota

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:58

The best way to begin to describe what Fargo is to start with what it isn’t. The new FX series (premieres April 15) is not a remake of the 1996 Coen brothers movie–though the brothers are executive producers and the Minnesota settings and accents (uffda!) are largely the same. The core story involves a mild-mannered salesman who falls into a life of crime, though it’s not car salesman Jerry Lundegaard but insurance salesman Lester Nygaard (Martin Freeman), and the crime is not the staged kidnapping of his wife but–ah, but we’re getting ahead of ourselves. The best way to describe Fargo is to say what Mark Twain reputedly said about history. It doesn’t repeat, but–dark, off-kilter, and bitingly funny–it rhymes. MoreThe Real History Behind the Game of Thrones “Ward” SystemVIDEO: Best Moments from the 2014 MTV Movie AwardsMen Charged With Toppling Ancient Rock Formation Avoid Jail Time Huffington PostHere's An Updated Tally Of All The People Who Have Ever Died From A Marijuana Overdose Huffington PostPEOPLE Goes Behind-the-Scenes of the Royal Family's Tour People

This Fargo has plenty of callbacks to the original–listen for the reference to “unguent”–and it begins as the movie does, with a disclaimer that the events (here set in 2006) are based on a true story. That story centers on Lester, whom a convincingly accented Freeman plays like Bilbo Baggins’ unhappy, stammering American cousin. He’s 40 and looks 50; he sputters through unpersuasive insurance pitches by day and gets berated by his disappointed wife by night. “Sometimes I tell people you’re dead,” she tells him, and to look at him, who’s to say she’s wrong? Popular Among Subscribers The Rise of Fake Pot Common Core Sparks Parent RevoltChristians and Tyrants

The invisible “Kick Me” sign Lester wears on his back is easily read by his former high-school bully, who runs into Lester one day and picks up where the two left off. The encounter lands Lester in the hospital, where he meets Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton), a soft-spoken stranger who happens to be in town for a contract killing. Malvo offers Lester help, with a side of Darwinian philosophy: “If you don’t stand up, let them know you’re still an ape, deep down where it counts, you’re just going to get washed away.”

Malvo–showrunner-writer Noah Hawley (The Unusuals) had a good old time with the names here–is a hit man by trade, but his real avocation is temptation; he moves through the world moving people to bad acts like a mad scientist of immorality. Thornton, who starred for the Coens in The Man Who Wasn’t There, makes him instantly seductive, impish, and terrifying, the devil with James Lipton’s beard. There’s something otherworldly about him, like a fairytale spirit or Twilight Zone alien sent to Earth to test humanity. (Spoiler alert: humanity is found wanting.)

This being a 10-episode “limited series,” Malvo is just one of the expansions enlarging this Fargo. A second criminal plot involves Stavros Milos (Oliver Platt), a blustering grocery store kingpin being blackmailed. The film role of cop Marge Gunderson is essentially split in two: Molly Solverson (Allison Tolman), a dogged Bemidji deputy frustrated by her deadweight boss Bill Oswalt (Bob Odenkirk); and Gus Grimley (Colin Hanks), a low-ranking Duluth cop trepidatious of what he’ll find when he turns over the rock of this case. And Adam Goldberg and Russell Harvard steal scenes as Mr. Numbers and Mr. Wrench, a thug and his deaf partner who echo Steve Buscemi and Peter Stormare’s mercenaries. (In the four episodes shown to critics, characters played by Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele have not yet been introduced.)

The major weakness–and one it’s getting tiresome to note in drama after drama–it’s the writing of several characters’ wives, who are portrayed as ballbusters, opportunists, or both. In an antihero-TV culture where subcultures of fans have ganged up on the likes of Breaking Bad’s Skyler and Sons of Anarchy’s Tara, trashing them as bitches and buzzkills who get in the protagonists’ way, intentionally or not these characterizations feel like they’re ratifying that attitude. It’s not as if most of the men here are any less caricatured (as in the movie, it’s a stylistic choice and takes a while to adjust to) but there are more of them and they get more screen time to develop. Freeman, to extend the Hobbit analogy, may start off Bilbo-ish, but he grows into a more interesting, guilt-wracked Gollum figure.

As the series itself develops (it was somewhere in episode 3 that I really got on board), all these broad-strokes characters add together into a more complex whole. This Fargo is seriously funny–you need to hear a sputtering Platt yell “Eat a turd! Is my response!” But it’s wrestling with moral questions Biblical in scale. What happens when decent folks are too timid to stand up to evil? Why is brutality so alluring? (With his talk of “predators” and “being a man” Malvo is the voice of everyone who saw Walter White as a hero, taken to a logical extreme.)

Indeed, after a few hours, Fargo feels not just like an adaptation of one Coen brothers movie but many: it has hints of No Country for Old Men, which pitted fallible humans against a seemingly unstoppable evil, and A Serious Man, which asked what it would be like if God were active in our world, an Old Testament God who laid tests and rendered judgment. (Not to mention, Always Sunny’s Glenn Howerton as an ineptly scheming personal trainer is a figure straight out of Burn After Reading.)

FX’s Fargo, shot in Alberta, uses landscapes better than any TV drama since Breaking Bad; its frozen lakes and snowpack vistas and boundless blue skies feel exposed, as if an all-powerful eye is constantly watching. And maybe it is. After a freakish turn of good luck in a flashback, Stavros mutters, “God is real.” The statement is half awe-struck, half terrified. Because if God is real, so is damnation, and it’s as plentiful as the drifting snow.

Categories: Magazines

Ukraine Wants UN Troops in Eastern Cities

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:57

Ukraine’s acting president Oleksandr Turchynov called on the United Nations Monday to send peacekeeping troops to 10 cities in the eastern part of Ukraine that have been occupied by pro-Russian insurgents.

Turchnyov asked Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon to send peacekeepers to coordinate with Ukrainian forces in an “anti-terrorist operation,” the Associated Press reports. Peacekeepers can only be authorized by the UN Security Council, where Russia has veto power.

Russian separatists have been occupying government buildings in the eastern part of Ukraine for the past week, despite the government’s ultimatum that they give up their weapons by Monday morning. That deadline came and went without any pause in the violence, as pro-Russian mobs stormed a police station and a military airport. Turchinov said Monday the offensive could still go ahead, though he sacked the security chief in charge of the operation and suggested in parliament that Ukraine might hold a referendum on its future — a move that could give insurgent regions more autonomy.

Western officials and the Kiev government have accused Russia of stoking the insurgency in the east, and even sending Russian troops to aid the protesters. “This instability was written and choreographed in and by Russia,” said U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power, at a security council meeting on Sunday. EU ministers were due to meet to discuss further sanctions against Russia this week.

The request for peacekeeping forces comes as the the U.S. announced the signing of a $1 billion loan to Ukraine, to help the country get back on the path to prosperity.. The IMF has already agreed to pay between $14 and 18 billion to help prop up Ukraine’s faltering economy, with international assistance from Europe and the U.S. increasing that figure to $27 billion. The country needs as much as $35 billion to pay its bills over the next two years, largely to Russia for gas payments.

A Russian jet made multiple close passes near an American warship Saturday, prompting the USS Donald Cook to issue several radio warnings and escalating tensions in the region. The ship was deployed to the Black Sea following Russia’s takeover of Crimea.

[AP]

 

Categories: Magazines

Kevin Gates Gets Ready to Go Global

RollingStone - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:55
"I don't know what to call what I do" says Kevin Gates of his rise as a leader of Dirty South striver's rap The 28-year-old Baton Rouge Louisiana artist raps sings and harmonizes often alternating between vocal modes within a verse exuding a gritty earthiness that sets him apart from...

Categories: Magazines

Goodnight, Moon: Why the Lunar Lights Will Go Out Tonight

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:51
MoreHow to Watch This Week’s Total Lunar Eclipse

Thanks to the artificial lighting that washes out the glory of the night sky in many parts of the developed world, it’s hard to understand why the ancients were in such awe of the heavens. Step outside at 3:07 a.m. EDT tomorrow, though—assuming the weather is clear—and you’ll see something that almost certainly threw your distant ancestors into a panic. At that moment, the full Moon will complete a transition from its usual silvery white brilliance to an ominous, coppery red. It’s a phenomenon known, with appropriate horror-movie overtones, as the Blood Moon. MoreSpaceX: A Ticket to RideAmericas Get Front-Row Seat For Lunar EclipseMen Charged With Toppling Ancient Rock Formation Avoid Jail Time Huffington PostHere's An Updated Tally Of All The People Who Have Ever Died From A Marijuana Overdose Huffington PostWoman Charged with Murder After 7 Dead Babies Discovered in Her Garage People

What it actually is depends on whom you ask—or asked. The ancient Maya believed it was caused by a cosmic jaguar swallowing the Moon; the Chinese agreed—except that it was three-legged toad doing the swallowing. And then there’s megachurch pastor John Hagee, who insists it’s a sign of a “world-shaking event” right around the corner.

Ask a scientist, though, and you’ll get a more prosaic answer: the Moon, moving on its age-old orbit, will simply pass through the Earth’s shadow. The whole thing takes 78 minutes, and during that time the Moon will look utterly weird. It won’t go entirely dark because sunlight is scattered as it passes through Earth’s atmosphere—the bluer parts of the Sun’s rainbow of colors bouncing every which way (which is why the sky looks blue) and the redder parts streaming right through (which is why the Sun and sky look red at sunrise and sunset). That’s part of it: the other part is that those red rays get bent as they pass through the atmosphere, just as though they were traveling through a lens—and some of those red rays are inclined at such an angle that they fall on the Moon.

Totality—the time when the Moon is completely shadowed—lasts less than an hour and a half. But a subtle darkening will start at 12:54 A.M. EDT, as the leading edge of Earth’s shadow begins to cover the Moon. The full shadow (or maybe it’s the toad) begins to bite at 1:58 A.M. The whole thing is entirely over, with the trailing edge of the shadow leaving the Moon its familiar silvery-white again, at 6:37 A.M. If you miss it all, don’t worry: the whole thing happens again on October 8 of this year, and again on April 4 and September 28 of next year.

This four-fer is known as a tetrad, and there are eight sets of lunar-eclipse tetrads this century: the last was in 2003-2004; the next will be in 2032-2033. (Total lunar eclipses don’t happen every month, or even every year, because the Moon’s orbit is tilted with respect to Earth’s orbit around the Sun. As a result, the Moon usually passes just above or just below Earth’s shadow, and only occasionally goes right through it). So it’s all very scientific—nothing mystical or prophetic about it. Although you might not mention that in St. Louis: it was on the night of a total lunar eclipse back in 2004 that the Red Sox beat the Cardinals in the fourth game to win the World Series for the first time in 86 years.

Categories: Magazines

MERS Death Toll Climbs as Man Killed By Virus in Saudi Arabia

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:38

A foreigner has died of the MERS virus in Saudi Arabia, the country’s health ministry announced Saturday. Eight others, including five health workers, have also been recently infected with MERS, the ministry said.

The nationality of the 45-year-old man who died in the city of Jeddah has not been disclosed, the AFP reports. His death brings Saudi Arabia’s MERS-related fatality count to 68, making it the country most affected by the virus.

The origins of the MERS, or the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, has puzzled scientists, though a February study suggested camels may play a role in spreading it. MERS is related to but more deadly than the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) virus.

The World Health Organization said Friday that it knows of 212 confirmed cases of MERS. 88, or approximately 42%, of those patients have died.

[AFP]

Categories: Magazines

Black Keys Channel Sleepy Psychedelia on New Track 'Turn Blue'

RollingStone - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:37
The Black Keys drop their eighth studio album the Danger Mouse-produced Turn Blue on May 13th and now the blues-rock heavyweights have shared the LP's title track a slow-burning slice of psychedelia "When the music is done and all the lights are low" sings frontman Dan Auerbach over a breezy...

Categories: Magazines

McConnell’s Tea Party Opponent Raises $1.12 Million In First Quarter

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:34

Matt Bevin, the Tea Party candidate challenging Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, announced Monday that he raised $1.12 million from 30,000 donors in the first quarter of 2014.

“As Kentuckians learn the truth about Sen. McConnell’s record of repeatedly caving to President Obama and his long history of votes for bailouts, amnesty, and funding for Obamacare, they have rallied to our campaign,” Bevin, a businessman and first time candidate, said in a statement. “With the help of these grassroots conservatives, we will make history when we win on May 20.”

Though McConnell hasn’t reported his first quarter 2014 numbers yet, he ended 2013 with $10.9 million in cash on hand and had already spent more than $5 million on what will surely end up as one of the most expensive Senate campaigns ever waged. By comparison, Bevin ended 2013 with $523,000 cash on hand, and $600,000 in debt. And despite the strong first quarter fundraising figure, Bevin still trails McConnell in polls by more than 30 points.

But Bevin’s fundraising, on the strength of endorsements from local and national Tea Party groups, shows the Tea Party is not going quietly into the night, despite—or perhaps because of— McConnell’s threat to “crush” Tea Party insurgents this cycle. Tea Party candidates who upset mainstream Republicans are widely believed to have cost the GOP the Senate majority in the 2010 and 2012 cycles.

While Bevin is unlikely to catch McConnell in the polls with 42 days left of campaigning, he can force McConnell to spend more money to defend himself in radio and television ads, money that McConnell would prefer to save for a tough general election against the likely Democratic candidate, Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.

The race is expected to cost more than $100 million in total. And in the end Republicans might have to make a Sophie’s Choice: If, in the final sprint, McConnell is still struggling, do they spend their money to save him, or the Senate majority? As my story on McConnell in this week’s print magazine outlines, Kentucky voters and Senate Republicans both will have to decide: how much is a leader worth?

Categories: Magazines

VIDEO: William and Kate Quash Baby No. 2 Rumors With Wine Tasting

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:34

It seems like Prince George, who made headlines with his first group playdate last week, will have a little more time before he has to share the spotlight with a younger sibling.

Any rumors that Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge were expecting a second child were quashed Sunday when the couple made a visit to a New Zealand vineyard, and Kate enjoyed a glass of wine.

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Judge To Ohio: Recognize Out-of-State Gay Marriage

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:30

(CINCINNATI) — A federal judge has ordered Ohio authorities to recognize the marriages of gay couples performed in other states.

Judge Timothy Black’s ruling on Monday criticized the state’s “ongoing arbitrary discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.”

He says the state’s marriage recognition bans are unconstitutional and unenforceable.

Black’s order doesn’t force Ohio to allow gay marriages to be performed in the state.

The state plans to appeal Black’s ruling, arguing that Ohio has a sovereign right to ban gay marriage, which voters did overwhelmingly in 2004.

Black delayed deciding whether to stay his ruling pending appeal until attorneys on both sides present their arguments on the issue by the end of Tuesday.

Categories: Magazines

Debbie Harry Joins Arcade Fire for 'Heart of Glass' at Coachella

RollingStone - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:20
Arcade Fire closed out Coachella 2014 with a little help from a New Wave icon as Blondie frontwoman Debbie Harry jumped onstage to sing her band's 1978 smash "Heart of Glass" tackling the vocals in messy unison with Régine Chassagne  Blondie A Day in the Life at SXSW Their collaboration isn't seamless littered with...

Categories: Magazines

You Can Now Afford To Buy a Work of Art by Banksy (Sort Of)

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:19

Have you ever dreamed of wading into the lucrative market of cutting-edge art, but lacked the funds to do so? A new art-buying platform called My Art Invest could help you purchase at least a piece of a piece of art. MoreSee Every #Selfie Posted on Instagram in Real Time Fresh Air Sells for $860 a Jar in ChinaMen Charged With Toppling Ancient Rock Formation Avoid Jail Time Huffington PostHere's An Updated Tally Of All The People Who Have Ever Died From A Marijuana Overdose Huffington PostWoman Charged with Murder After 7 Dead Babies Discovered in Her Garage People

The business, which launched an international website last week, is designed to allow art lovers to purchase shares in works by leading contemporary and street artists like Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Katrin Fridriks and more. Popular Among Subscribers The Rise of Fake Pot Common Core Sparks Parent RevoltChristians and Tyrants

My Art Invest founder Tom-David Bastok, a 25-year-old one-time finance student, says that he was inspired to start the business because he wants “to make the art market more democratic.” Speaking to TIME in his newly opened gallery in London’s trendy Shoreditch neighborhood, Bastok says he wants to revolutionize the “elitist” way art has been previously bought and sold. “This is very important for us — that everyone can have access to the art market.”

The system works like this: My Art Invest purchases works by artists — established, as well as rising stars — and lists the pieces on their website. Each work is priced according to its current market value and then divided into shares, which start as low as £5 (~$8) a share. (Prices average around £50 or ~$80 a share, though a share of a Banksy work is around £120 or ~$200.) Customers can either browse the works online or in the gallery and select a piece they’d like to invest in; gallery visitors are even offered iPads to make their purchases on the spot.

Once all the shares of a particular work have sold, investors can either sell their shares on the website’s trading platform or hold on to them as the piece’s worth grows. When a piece’s shares are completely sold and 51% of the shareholders agree, Bastok says, “My Art Invest will resell your shares by selling the entire artwork,” ideally for a significant profit.

The platform seems ideal for those who are eager to invest in the cutting-edge art market they might normally be priced out of, but is it a gamble? In 2011, a Parisian-based company called Art Exchange tried to establish a similiar system, offering buyers shares in high-priced art works. They also offered sellers daily liquidity. Yet the Art Exchange never took off.

Bastok says that My Art Invest differs from other such initiatives because, “we are a middle or a long-term investment, not a quick-shot [investment].” He notes that selling all the shares for a piece and then the artwork itself could take up to five years.

But his business model has already turned a profit for investors. Though My Art Invest has just launched internationally, the platform has been available in France since 2011, which explains why the website has many sold-out pieces such as canvases by Takashi Murakami or skateboards by Damien Hirst. “In three years, all of our artworks have increased in value,” says Bastok proudly, who adds that French customers have seen an average of 30% increase on the value of their shares. According to Reuters, the company previously traded shares on one Jeff Koons sculpture called “Blue Balloon Dog,” which launched with shares priced at $76 each but went on to sell for $277 each.

But what about those people who would like to actually see their art, and not just own it? My Art Invest attempts to address that with the London gallery and Bastok says they’re also planning on expanding with galleries opening in New York, Paris, Miami, Hong Kong and Shanghai within the next five years. What’s more, investors who purchase 25% of the work’s shares are able to keep the work to display in their home for three months — or 25% — of the year.

“If just one person buys the painting and puts it up in his home, no one will see it. But here” — Bastok stops to gesture at the art on the gallery’s walls where pieces like Banksy’s “Heavy Artillery Elephant” and Conor Harrington’s “The Killer Inside Me” hang — “there will be 100 or 200 or 300 people who buy it. And then 100 people will talk about their new artwork.”

Bastok also believes that art shouldn’t simply be a financial investment but a personal one as well. “When you put £1 down on a work, you want to be aware of everything about the artist. In My Art Invest, the biggest point for me is that you have to fall in love with a good investment. So we have to select some good investment [pieces], but you have to fall in love to buy your shares.”

Categories: Magazines

Dutch Teen Reportedly Arrested For Tweeting Threat at American Airlines

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:16

A 14-year-old girl who tweeted a threat at American Airline’s Twitter account on Sunday was arrested Monday, but not at the request of the FBI or the airlines, a Dutch police spokesperson told Business Insider and BNO News.

Dutch police spokeswoman tells BNO News the 14-year-old girl was arrested after their own investigation, not on request of AA or FBI—
Michael van Poppel (@mpoppel) April 14, 2014

It began when a girl named Sarah (her account @GeenDementriax has since been suspended) tweeted, “Hello my name’s Ibrahim and I’m from Afghanistan. I’m part of Al Qaida and on June 1st I’m gonna do something really big bye.”

American Airlines replied: “Sarah, we take these threats very seriously. YOur IP Address and details will be forwarded to security and the FBI.”

Before her account was removed, she tweeted, “omfg I was kidd,” “I’m so sorry I’m scared no,” “I was joking and it was my friend not me, take her IP address,” and “I was kidding pls don’t I’m just a girl pls.” She also tweeted, ““I’m just a fangirl pls I don’t have evil thoughts and plus I’m a white girl.” Wessel Stole, a spokesperson for the Dutch police, told Business Insider:

We’re not in a state that we can communicate any state of charges at this point, we just thought it was necessary to bring this out mostly because of the fact that it caused a great deal of interest on the Internet.

Guess Sarah learned the hard way that tweeting threats is never funny.

We’ve reached out to Dutch police for our own confirmation and will update when we hear back.

Categories: Magazines

House Speaker John Boehner Visits Afghanistan

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:14

Speaker of the House John Boehner visited Afghanistan Monday, the highest-profile visit by an American official since that country’s first round of presidential voting earlier this month.

Boehner and a number of House Republicans met with American forces, as well as Ambassador James Cunningham and General Joseph Dunford, the commander of the International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces in Afghanistan. According to a statement from Boehner’s office, “the delegation sent a strong, unequivocal message that the House of Representatives wants to maintain a right-sized presence in Afghanistan to successfully complete the work that has been done to date, and to honor the sacrifice of thousands of troops and civilians, as well as their families.”

The Republican delegation’s visit comes as U.S. officials weigh how many—if any—American troops to leave in Afghanistan after the end of the year, when U.S. operations there are set to conclude. President Barack Obama has stated a desire to keep some American troops in Afghanistan for counterterrorism and training purposes, but ordered the Pentagon in February to draw up plans for a complete withdrawal from the country, as Afghan President Hamid Karzai refused to sign a Bilateral Security Agreement that would provide legal protections for remaining U.S. troops. However, every frontrunner in the presidential election to replace Karzai has said they would sign the bilateral agreement.

Boehner sought to pay tribute to troops who had fought in Afghanistan since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. “Many Americans have sacrificed to secure these goals, and far too many have made the ultimate sacrifice or suffered life-changing wounds in the past twelve years of fighting,” he said in a statement. “Now, the Afghans are poised to elect a new government for the first time in their history. We must honor the sacrifices of the Americans and Afghans who have given so much to reach this point and continue our work together.”

House Education & Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-MN), Natural Resources Committee Chairman ‘Doc’ Hastings (R-WA), Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI), Rep. Tom Latham (R-IA), Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR), and Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR) accompanied Boehner on the trip, according to the statement.

Obama last visited Afghanistan in May 2012.

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T-Mobile to Nix Overage Charges for All Consumer Plans

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:14

On the heels of its reintroduction of an entry-level monthly data plan with a budget-friendlier price, T-Mobile said Monday that it’ll kill off overage charges on consumer plans entirely, then called on its rivals to follow suit.

Or spin that another way and you’re looking at T-Mobile CEO John Legere doing his usual maverick shtick, throwing down another gauntlet to garner attention, which he’s certainly getting here:

With any big change that’s ever led to any lasting good, somebody’s got to first stand up and point out a wrong. And it doesn’t hurt if that “somebody” is loud enough and brash enough that they’re hard to ignore. I can do that.

Overage charges are what we pay when we go over on voice, data or text quotas, and the amounts can be significant. T-Mobile already moved to mitigate most of them with its Simple Choice plans, so some of it’s symbolic, but nonetheless significant, because it’s not just T-Mobile drawing a line in the sand and quietly going about its business, it’s John Legere digging a trench (there’s no backing up on this now, unless Legere leaves) and taking activist aim at rivals AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.

Yes, activist: Legere just launched a Change.org petition calling on its rivals to “do the same for their customers – because it’s the right thing to do.” In the petition, Legere claims over 20 million U.S. customers were hit with overage charges last year, and that AT&T, Verizon and Sprint pocket a cool $1 billion in overage penalties annually.

“Charging overage fees is a greedy, predatory practice that needs to go,” said Legere in a statement. “Starting in May for bills arriving in June – regardless of whether you’re on Simple Choice, Simple Starter or an older plan, we’re abolishing overages for good. Period.”

What consumer’s going to disagree with firebrand rhetoric that resonates on economic and philosophical levels? T-Mobile’s still the fourth largest carrier in the U.S. with annual revenue of over $20 billion, and you could argue this is as transparent a marketing maneuver as any other, but Legere’s tapping a form of finger-pointing populism (he’s borderline muckraking here) typically reserved for silly-season campaign ads — though there’s nothing silly about defining yourself in strict terms as the anti-overage fees, anti-annual service contract option.

Categories: Magazines

Horror In Nigeria As Blast Kills 71

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 11:01
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Lana Del Rey Returns With “West Coast”: Listen

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 10:57

It’s only right that during the most important music event on the West Coast — the Coachella music festival — pop music’s endlessly polarizing flower child Lana Del Rey debuted a new song inspired by that very place. “West Coast,” the first single from Del Rey’s upcoming album, Ultraviolence, has all the makings of a signature Lana Del Rey tack: brooding, velvety vocals; a few sparse guitar twangs; a continued obsession with America’s most iconic proper nouns; and a video that looks shot on Instagram.

Earlier this month, the leak of a disco-infused Lana Del Rey song, “Meet Me in the Pale Moonlight,” suggested the singer might be injecting her wistful shtick with a dash of Studio 54 glamour, but the only new sonic developments here are the laid-back track’s shifting tempos and windier production, likely courtesy of The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach, with whom she’s collaborating on Ultraviolence. Fans will probably be pleased with the song’s springtime dose of some summertime sadness.

Categories: Magazines

VIDEO: Best Moments from the 2014 MTV Movie Awards

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 10:54

If you didn’t get a chance to watch Sunday’s MTV Movie Awards, you probably shouldn’t ask Grumpy Cat how it went. Although the celebrity feline had a front row seat, she was not impressed by the onstage proceedings:

Here's Grumpy Cat sleeping at the #MTVMovieAwards: http://t.co/kUiaOSzmIY
Josh Lincoln Dickey (@NotoriousJLD) April 14, 2014

For human viewers, however, there were more than enough moments to keep the audience entertained — from Rita Ora ripping off Zac Efron’s shirt to the cast of The Other Woman (Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, Kate Upton, Nicki Minaj) objectifying men onstage.

Take a look at the best moments of the night in the video above.

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Lana Del Rey Shows Off Two Sides of Herself in New Track 'West Coast'

RollingStone - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 10:50
Lana Del Rey shows off two different moody sides of herself in "West Coast" the second original song released since the singer announced her upcoming album Ultraviolence and the first she has confirmed will appear on the LP She cowrote the song with occasional collaborator Rick Nowels and recorded it with...

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Simple Kind of Man: George W. Bush's Post-Presidential Painting Career

RollingStone - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 10:45
The George W Bush Presidential Center sits idly on the campus of Southern Methodist University overlooking a deeply rutted practice field a few tennis courts and a boulevard lined with frat houses Like its namesake the building seems to pride itself in being almost aggressively average; a stack of bricks and...

Categories: Magazines

Burger King China Is Selling a Beverage Called the PooPoo Smoothie

Time - Mon, 04/14/2014 - 10:42

Now that it’s getting warm out, doesn’t a nice cold smoothie sound so nice and appetizing? Probably not a PooPoo smoothie though, right?

Well, that’s the name of Burger King China’s latest cold drink, Kotaku reports. But don’t let the name deceive you. Apparently, the PooPoo smoothie is quite delicious. Its Chinese name is something that roughly translates to “mango ice smoothie with blow up pearls cold beverage” which is a much more accurate description than “PooPoo.”

kotaku.com/poo-poo-smooth…

@anthonytao @francisybea @pabischoff You guys have to try this Poo Poo Smoothie!—
Eric Jou (@FatAsianTechie) April 14, 2014

According to Kotaku:

The PooPoo* Smoothie is pretty much like a Taiwanese Boba Tea. It’s a mango flavored slushie with what tastes like lychee flavored “pulp pearls” on the bottom of the cup. It’s topped off with a swirl of soft serve vanilla ice cream. I asked for chocolate but the staff didn’t get the joke.

That sounds delightful, doesn’t it? But like, naming it the PooPoo smoothie will clearly affect sales in a very negative way. Maybe Burger King’s marketing team should have thought this one through a bit further.

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