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August 6-8, 2012 Headlines: Aly’s Olympic Solute to slain Israelis, Pres pushes tax cut for some, ‘n’ Balling for $

Jewish gal shows up IOC with a gold salute to Munich 11

Jewish-American gymnast Aly Raisman wins Olympic gold-medal floor routine, Reuters

New York Post  Tues, Aug 7 2012

It wasn’t a gloved-fist salute from the medal stand, but Jewish-American gymnast Aly Raisman made quite a statement yesterday by winning a gold medal and invoking the memory of the Israeli athletes killed 40 years ago in Munich. Raisman finished first in the women’s floor exercise, but she deserves to have another medal draped around her neck for having the chutzpah to face the world and do what needed to be done and say what needed to be said. At the same Olympic Games where bigoted organizers stubbornly refuse to honor the slain athletes with a moment of silence, 18-year-old Raisman loudly shocked observers first by winning, then by paying her own tribute to 11 sportsmen who died long before she was born.

Obama favors cutting Olympians’ tax bill

CNN (blog)   Mon, Aug 6 2012

These Olympians owe thousands in taxes

(CNN) – When the U.S. Olympic team add to its medal count, it’s not just the fans and Olympians who celebrate. So does the IRS. That’s because the U.S. Olympic Committee awards each medalist with a cash prize – $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver, and $10,000 for bronze – money that the U.S. government has always considered taxable income. But the White House on Monday said President Obama favors a proposed bill that would keep Uncle Sam’s hands off Olympic earnings. “The president believes that we should support efforts . . . to ensure that we are doing everything we can to honor and support our Olympic athletes who have volunteered to represent our nation at the Olympic Games,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters…referencing legislation proposed by Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio that would exempt the cash awards associated with Olympic medals.

Barack Obama to fundraise with basketball game featuring Michael Jordan and Carmelo Anthony

President Barack Obama has Michael Jordan, Carmelo Anthony and other basketball stars committed to a fundraising event. (Saul Loeb:Getty Images)   Tues, Aug 7 2012

Barack Obama is about to get a boost in his fundraising efforts from a number of big names in the basketball world. According to a report Tuesday afternoon from, citing a campaign e-mail, the president will hold an “Obama Classic” basketball game as a fundraiser. Among those scheduled to participate are Michael Jordan, Carmelo Anthony, Kyrie Irving, Patrick Ewing, Alonzo Mourning and Sheryl Swoops.

President or bust: Candidate Mitt Romney meets Harry Caray statue at Chicago Fundraiser

Yahoo! Sports (blog)  Wed, Aug 8 2012

Witth the current occupant of the White House also being a fervent supporter of the Chicago White Sox (no matter what it said on Facebook recently), it makes sense that Republican candidate Mitt Romney would seek the sprawling Chicago Cubs vote. To that end, Romney visited Harry Caray’s restaurant Tuesday to raise campaign funds and to rub, eh, shoulders with the inspiration for the business, Hall of Fame broadcaster Harry Caray. Or at least Harry’s bust.

Holy Cow! Mitt Romney & Harry Caray, Getty

No Olympic medal for Ann Romney’s horse Rafalca

Washington Post   Tues, Aug 7 2012

In Tuesday’s Olympic dressage event at Greenwich Park, Rafalca, the 15-year-old mare part-owned by Mitt and Ann Romney, received an individual score of 69.302, which is too low to qualify for the highlight of dressage competitions — Thursday’s Grand Prix Freestyle — meaning the Romneys’ horse is out of medal contention.

Major League Baseball, the New York Mets and New York City unveil the official logo of the 2013 All-Star Game   Tues, Aug 7 2012

FLUSHING, NY – Major League Baseball, the New York Mets and New York City today unveiled the official logo of the 2013 All-Star Game, which will be played at Citi Field on Tuesday, July 16th…”Major League Baseball hit a home run when they chose to hold the 2013 All-Star Game in New York City,” said Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. “Incorporating our city’s iconic skyline into the logo highlights that the game will be played on the world’s biggest stage.”

N.J. officials unfazed by lawsuit against plan for sports betting   Tues, Aug 7 2012

Four major professional leagues and the NCAA sued New Jersey on Tuesday, saying that Trenton’s plan to allow betting on athletic competition poses a threat to the integrity of their games. But an array of powerful figures in the state — including the governor and a leading Democratic state senator — shrugged off the lawsuit, saying that a legal battle had been anticipated. “Listen, there’s a federal law that was passed that restricts the states that can participate in sports gambling to just four,” Governor Christie said at a State House press conference. “We believe that law is unconstitutional.”

New York senator, governor announce plans to keep Bills in Buffalo   Wed, Aug 8 2012

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday announced the appointment of a sports expert to advise the state in its efforts to secure the Buffalo Bills‘ future in western New York. Sen. Charles Schumer, meantime, said he has asked the National Football League for changes in a stadium renovation loan program that he said would advance the same goal. The moves come as negotiations are under way between the Bills and Erie County and New York state to extend the Bills’ lease at Ralph Wilson Stadium in suburban Buffalo. The current deal expires in July 2013.

Knicks links: Assistant Secretary of State drops Jeremy Lin’s name in Taipei

The Star-Ledger –   Mon, Aug 6 2012

Diplomats are regular people (I don’t know any, but that seems reasonable to say) so it’s not a complete surprise that Jose W. Fernandez, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, discussed Jeremy Lin with Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou in an official visit on Monday.According to a post by Kelven Huang and Sofia Wu on the Focus Taiwan Channel’s website, Fernandez, a native New Yorker, said he regretted Lin’s move from the Knicks to the Houston Rockets and added his hope that the California native would return to the Big Apple to finish his career.

Former mayor named head of sports authority

Northwest News and Tribune   Wed, Aug 8 2012

PLANT CITY — A former mayor who helped find a new tenant for the Plant City Stadium complex has been named chairman of the Tampa Sports Authority. Randy Larson, 57, said he looks forward to his year leading the authority, which manages Raymond James Stadium and three Tampa golf courses and is the landlord for George Steinbrenner Field and the Forum. His goal: to make the venues “accessible to the most people,” he said.

August 3-4, 2012 Headlines: Presidential Gymnastics, Rafalca places 13, ‘n’ Obama avoids date/land in the middle of one

Obama and Romney’s political gymnastics

Washington Post  Fri, Aug 3 2012

At NBC, to say we have Olympics fever is an understatement. For a few short weeks every four years, the Games overtake the presidential campaign as the more compelling news event. But competing in the Olympics and running for the White House have some things in common…Let’s use a sport that’s popular and one that, if President Obama and Mitt Romney actually tried it, would surely entertain audiences more than your typical stump speech: women’s gymnastics. Let the games begin!

Obama to US Olympic team: ‘Your country could not be prouder’

The Hill (blog)   Fri, Aug 3 2012

President Obama stepped away from election-year battles to praise America’s athletes who are competing in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, telling them “your country could not be prouder of you.” In his weekly address, Obama said the competitors showed the nation that “for all our differences, we’re Americans first” and that their efforts had “brought us all together this week.”

Ann Romney ‘thrilled’ by horse’s performance in Olympics

Los Angeles Times   Thurs, Aug 2 2012

Ann Romney stayed behind in London to watch her trainer, Jan Ebeling, and Rafalca, the mare she co-owns, compete in the dressage ring Thursday. Ebeling and Rafalca, part of the U.S. Olympic Equestrian team, finished 13th in their first test — the individual grand prix competition — with a score of 70.243%. The Los Angeles Times’ Helene Elliott reported that Romney pronounced herself “thrilled to death with the performance.”

German rower leaves London after reported ties to neo-Nazis surface

Yahoo! Sports  Fri, Aug 3 2012

Nadja Drygalla, a German rower who already competed at the Olympics, is on her way home from London a bit earlier than she intended. Drygalla decided to leave the Games after reports surfaced that she is connected to a neo-Nazi group in Germany. Drygalla’s boyfriend is reportedly a leader of the Rostock National Socialists, a group German intelligence describes as neo-Nazi and racist.

Picture of Obama holding baseball bat angers Turkish political circles

New York Daily News   Sat, Aug 4 2012

Barack Obama’s publicity team were thrown a curve ball this week when a photo of the president holding a baseball bat intended to promote friendship with an important ally did just the opposite. Speaking with Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan on Monday about the escalating crisis in Syria, Obama was photographed holding a baseball bat signed by legendary player Hank Aaron. In the shot, the president looks relaxed and contemplative. But some Turkish leaders didn’t seem to think so. “The photo reveals from whom our Prime Minister receives orders to rule the country,” Metin Lutfi Baydar, an opposition politician for Turkey’s Republican People’s Party (CHP) party, said in a statement. Another CHP leader, party vice president Umut Oran, called the picture “an implicit insult to Turkey and its citizens” in Parliament, Reuters reports.

Obama Clears a Baseball Hall of Fame Coin

Wall Street Journal   Fri, Aug 3 2012

Despite earlier criticism from the White House, President Barack Obama signed a bill to mint new coins honoring the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y…H.R. 2527, the “National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coin Act.” The measure, calling upon the Treasury Department to mint new coins honoring the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. was sponsored by Rep. Richard Hanna, a New York Republican whose district includes the Hall of Fame. A companion Senate bill was sponsored by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.).

Virginia Gov discusses deal to move Redskins’ camp   Sat, Aug 4 2012

ASHBURN, Va. — Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell says the Washington Redskins have chosen four sites in Richmond at which they hope to hold their training camp next year. McDonnell, speaking at the Redskins’ “Fan Appreciation Day” at Redskins Park, said executives will make on-site assessments next week. In June, McDonnell announced a financial package that would relocate the team’s three weeks of training camp each summer from Ashburn to the state capital in exchange for public funding in renovating their year-round facility. The package includes a $4 million investment by the state and $2 million from Loudoun County, as well as $400,000 from the city of Richmond to fund capital improvements at the eventual training camp site. The Redskins estimate the cost of renovations to their facility, which opened in 1992, at $30 million.

Rex Ryan avoids debate with Obama

Newsday  Fri, Aug 3 2012

CORTLAND, N.Y. — The media sat in stunned silence, unsure of what to make of the dead air. Reporters anxiously had been awaiting a Rex Ryan comeback, certain the Jets‘ coach had stayed up all night crafting witty one-liners. But when pressed Friday for a reaction to President Barack Obama‘s negative stance on the Tim Tebow trade, he surprisingly bit his tongue. “The president of the greatest country there is, and he’s talking about the New York football team,” Ryan said with a smile. “I’ll say this, I respect President Obama. And I respect the fact that this is his opinion.”

Serena Williams and Condoleezza Rice among the unexpected football fans in `My Team’ campaign

Newser   Fri, Aug 3 2012

Football fans will soon be pulling out their jerseys, but a few have gotten a jump on the season: Serena Williams, Melania Trump and Condoleezza Rice are among the NFL fans who’ll be appearing in ads promoting team-themed apparel and gear next week in a campaign called “It’s My Team.”

August 1-2, 2012 Headlines: Penn get statesman oversight, Phelps Gold ‘n’ Proposed Medal tax cut

NCAA tabs former Sen. George Mitchell as PSU integrity monitor

Former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell, D-Maine, AP Photo:Dennis Cook

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review  Wed, Aug 1 2012

STATE COLLEGE — Former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell will serve as the independent athletics integrity monitor at Penn State University for the NCAA. The NCAA announced Mitchell’s five-year appointment on Wednesday…Mitchell will evaluate Penn State’s compliance with the agency’s sanctions and the integrity agreement with the NCAA and Big Ten. College sports’ governing body says Mitchell will have “broad access to campus, personnel and records” and make any recommendations necessary for Penn State to comply with its requirements.

Michael Phelps’ Twitter Gets Tweets From Obama, Pele, Lil Wayne

Huffington Post   Wed, Aug 1 2012

LONDON (Reuters) – In 2008, the congratulations came by telephone: “If you can handle eight gold medals, you can handle anything,” then U.S. President George W. Bush told Michael Phelps after he swept the board at the Beijing Olympics. It was a sign of the times that just four years later, at the so-called Twitter Games, it was via the social media site that dozens of friends, musicians, sports celebrities and even the U.S. President showered Phelps with good wishes after he became the most decorated Olympic athlete of all time.”Congrats to Michael Phelps for breaking the all-time Olympic medal record. You’ve made your country proud. – bo,” Obama, who tweets as @BarackObama, wrote. Messages from Obama are often written by his team, but the initials identify the rare messages that come directly from the president. Phelps was quick to respond: “Thank you Mr. President!! It’s an honor representing the #USA !! The best country in the world!!”

Rubio proposes Olympic tax loophole (blog)   Wed, Aug 1 2012

It’s doubtful that, say, Michael Phelps needs a tax break, but Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., announced Wednesday he was introducing the Olympic Tax Elimination Act, which would exempt U.S. Olympic medal winners from paying taxes on their medals.  His office notes that Olympians who win medals also receive honorariums: cash payments of $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver and $10,000 for bronze. We’re checking with the IRS to determine whether there’s a special tax for Olympians, or whether it all gets taxed as income. And whether the winners of the Nobel Prize, for example, also face similar taxes. Rubio’s spokesman said that Americans for Tax Reform, headed by Grover Norquist, brought the idea to the senator’s attention.

First fan: Russian President Vladimir Putin, a black belt, takes in Olympic judo

Washington Post  Thurs, Aug 2 2012

LONDON — He clenched his fists at times, leaned back nervously at others. And when his compatriots won Olympic gold, he leaped from his seat and thrust his arms skyward. A common fan reaction — from an uncommon fan. Vladimir Putin was one thrilled Russian president on Thursday. The longtime judo enthusiast had a VIP seat to watch Tagir Khaibulaev win the 100-kilogram gold medal. When the match ended, Putin led the celebration

Ann Romney’s horse fails to win dressage but avoids offending British

The Guardian   Thurs, Aug 2 2012

Rafalca, the horse owned by Ann Romney, competes in London 2012

Rafalca, owned by Mrs Mitt Romney, was impeccably behaved and well received by Olympic equestrians in Greenwich

New era of sports diplomacy

Politico   Thurs, Aug 2 2012

The State Department, like the rest of America, has its eyes fixed on the London Olympics. But officials there aren’t just rooting for Team USA — they’re also looking for new recruits. Today’s gold medalists, after all, are tomorrow’s sports diplomats. The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has been sending renowned Olympic coaches and athletes, including Michelle Kwan, Evan Lysacek, Kate Markgraf and Misty May-Treanor, around the globe as part of its SportsUnited initiative, which aims to strengthen ties with other countries by teaching sports to underserved youth.

President Obama doesn’t endorse Jets’ QB situation

USA TODAY   Thurs, Aug 2 2012

(CNN)–It’s still a mystery why President Barack Obama was holding a baseball bat during his telephone conversation with Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan

Obama was a guest on 97.1 The Fan in Columbus, Ohio, on Thursday and offered his thoughts on the tenuous situation between Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow. “I gotta tell you, I don’t like the idea of a quarterback controversy at the start of a season,” Obama said, via the New York Daily News. “So if I was a Jets fan, I’d be pretty nervous. Sanchez is not Tom Brady yet, but he led them to the playoffs two years in a row. I think Tim Tebow seems to be a wonderful young man, and he’s got just a great winning attitude. He really steps up when things count.”

Racing presidents continue Olympic tributes with fencing

Washington Post (blog)  Thurs, Aug 2 2012

The racing presidents are continuing with their Olympic tributes. Tuesday it was race walking. Last night, fencing. It was Teddy’s race to lose as it was essentially a one-man contest with sword-bearing presidents as obstacles. Abe and George were easy targets, but Tom is apparently a fencing novice opposite of novice. It’s a little surprising that George, a former general, isn’t better with a sword.

Joe Biden adds to list of Nats’ high-powered visitors

Washington Post (blog)  Thurs, Aug 2 2012

The VP, with principal owners Debra Lerner Cohen and Ed Cohen. Photos via the Nationals

Nats Park seems to be a popular destination for government heavyweights. Vice President Joe Biden’s visit

President Obama’s campaign will host a basketball themed fund-raiser at Chelsea Piers

Capital New York  Thurs, Aug 2 2012

President Obama’s campaign will host a basketball themed fund-raiser at Chelsea Piers later this month. “Please join basketball’s greatest super stars and shoot some hoops to benefit the Obama Campaign in New York City,” says an invitation for the event on August 22. Tickets are $250 for an autograph session; for $5,000 a parent and child get a “shoot around skills session” with the players.

July 19, 2012 Headlines: Go Army, Olympic moment of silence endorsed, ‘n’ DNC “Sorry Mrs. Romney…”

House Says Military Can Keep NASCAR Sponsorships

ABC News Thu, 19 Jul 2012 05:48 AM PDT

It was another NASCAR race to the finish, but it wasn’t at the track.  It was on Capitol Hill, where in these economically tough times some members of Congress didn’t think it was a smart idea for the military to be spending millions on professional sports sponsorships as a recruiting tool…Late Thursday night, in a close 216 to 202 vote,  the House of Representatives struck down a bipartisan amendment that would have cut $72 million from next year’s $608 billion defense spending bill slated for professional sports sponsorships used to help with military recruiting.  The military services sponsor a wide range of professional sports, including bass fishing tournaments and the Ultimate Fighting Championship, but it was the National Guard’s sponsorship of Earnhardt’s car that drew all the attention

DNC Apologizes to Ann Romney For Horsing Around

The New York Observer Thu, 19 Jul 2012 06:32 AM PDT

DNC spokesman Brad Woodhouse told ABC News yesterday that he was sorry if new ads hitting Mitt Romney on his refusal to release his tax returns offended Ann Romney. The ads in question featured Ms. Romney’s dancing dressage horse, Rafalca, which is headed to the London Olympics. In the ads, the DNC uses footage of the prancing horse to make the claim Mr. Romney is “dancing around the issues” of his taxes and personal finances. “Our use of the Romneys’ dressage horse was not meant to offend Mrs. Romney in any way, and we regret it if it did,”

Obama backs Olympics moment of silence for Israelis killed at Munich Games

Yahoo! News Thu, 19 Jul 2012 11:17 AM PDT

President Barack Obama strongly supports holding a formal moment of silence at the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in tribute to 11 Israeli athletes and coaches killed by Palestinian extremists at the 1972 games in Munich, the White House said Thursday. “We absolutely support the campaign for a moment of silence at the Olympics to honor the Israeli athletes killed in Munich,” National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor told Yahoo News by email.

Mayor hangs onto her NBA dream: If you build it, they will come

Las Vegas Sun  Sun, 15 Jul 2012

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman has a perfect view of Las Vegas’ future. A balcony adjacent to Goodman’s seventh-floor office at City Hall yields a panoramic view of Symphony Park, where a proposed downtown arena could be constructed to highlight the 61-acre city neighborhood…In her mind’s eye, however, the building has been constructed. And, since the charismatic leader is dreaming her own dream, the arena is packed with locals and tourists enjoying a night of NBA action featuring a Las Vegas team. Isn’t it fun to dream — the Las Vegas Kings or Las Vegas Hornets, right? “That is the beauty of Las Vegas,” she said. “We are forever creative and forever reinventing ourselves.”

July 18, 2012 Headlines: Romney & the Pres moving towards the Olympics, Armstrong’s anti doping lobbying, ‘n’ Nets arrive

Mitt Romney Hopes Olympic Appearance Will Serve as a Distraction

U.S. News & World Report   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

When Mitt Romney travels to the Olympics in London next week, he is hoping for a round of positive media coverage of the strong leadership he provided in rescuing the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics in 2002. But he will be walking a tightrope because his Democratic critics will use the occasion to ridicule him and attempt to undermine his case…Romney ran the Winter Olympics in 2002 and has been underscoring his stewardship to show that he has experience in repairing broken institutions.

Dems Hit Romney For ‘Dancing Horse’ Rafalca

ABC News   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

For the second time in the 2012 campaign, Democrats are attacking presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney with mocking references to one of his family pets. A new web video by the Democratic National Committee slams Romney for “dancing around the issues” while featuring footage of his Olympics-bound “dancing horse” Rafalca.

Armstrong’s foundation mounts lobbying campaign

Austin American-Statesman   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison — pictured in 2002 with Lance Armstrong, center, and then-Sen. Joe Biden Rick McKay:2002 Cox News Service

WASHINGTON — The foundation created by seven-time Tour de France cycling champion Lance Armstrong has mounted a lobbying campaign on Capitol Hill in an effort to counter accusations by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency that Armstrong took performance-enhancing drugs throughout much of his career.

City plans bid on 2018 Super Bowl

Indianapolis Business Journal   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

City and state officials announced Wednesday morning that the city of Indianapolis will bid to host the Super Bowl in 2018.

”I have four words for you: ‘Let’s do it again,’ Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said at a press conference at Lucas Oil Stadium.

FIFA picks ex-US attorney as corruption prosecutor

Contra Costa Times  Tues, 17 Jul 2012

ZURICH—FIFA appointed former United States attorney Michael J. Garcia on Tuesday as lead prosecutor to investigate allegations of corruption in world soccer. One of Garcia’s first tasks will be to inspect a Swiss court document on a World Cup kickbacks scandal to evaluate the behavior of FIFA president Sepp Blatter and other senior officials in the affair. “He will have not only to write, but the duty to have this case analyzed on ethic, moral matters and then to report back to the executive committee,” Blatter said at a news conference.

Sports Teams to Share Green Success Stories at the White House

Natural Resources Defense Council   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

President Obama loves basketball, but that’s not the reason why the reigning NBA champions, the Miami Heat, are invited to the White House tomorrow. Representatives from the Heat, as well as other professional sports teams, including the Pittsburgh Pirates, Seattle Mariners, Philadelphia Eagles, Portland Trailblazers, Saint Louis Cardinals, and others, are headed to Washington to discuss a game plan they all have in common–how to run a greener, more sustainable business.  Across the country, more than 100 major league sports teams have embraced NRDC’s Greening Advisor, a customized online resource designed to help sports teams find ways to green their operations through strategies like energy efficiency, waste reduction, and sustainable procurement policies. Through the Advisor, NRDC has helped spark tremendous change in the way sports teams operate.

Obama honors Baylor women’s hoops

Obama hosts Baylor Lady Bears

Fox Sports Wed, 18 Jul 2012 13:06 PM PDT

Smiling from her wheelchair, a 10-year-old girl with a rare disorder watched from the front row at the White House as President Barack Obama congratulated her beloved Baylor University’s women’s basketball team on winning this year’s NCAA championship…President Barack Obama is honoring Baylor’s undefeated women’s basketball team, calling the NCAA champions a ”dominant” team that scored more points than any team in women’s college basketball history.

Even Barack Obama Thinks Anthony Davis’ Unibrow Is Funny

Obama Thinks Anthony Davis’ Unibrow Is Funny

BuzzFeed   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

Watching the most powerful man in the world tease a clearly star-stuck NBA rookie is my new favorite thing ever….Nowhere is this more obvious than in his interaction with Anthony Davis. From the moment he sees the rookie, the president is busting his balls. “What are y’all doing with this rookie? Is he carrying the bags?” When Kobe makes a joke about the team making Davis shave his trademark unibrow if he doesn’t carry the bags, Obama couldn’t look more delighted.

Background on Local Officials Joining First Lady Michelle Obama at Let’s Move (press release)  Tues, 17 Jul 2012

Washington – Tomorrow in Philadelphia, First Lady Michelle Obama will join Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as well as local elected officials from across the country to announce public and private sector commitments to get our kids healthier as part of her Let’s Move! initiative to solve the problem of childhood obesity within a generation. The First Lady will be joined by leaders from across the country who are working to make their communities healthier.

Borough President Markowitz welcomes Nets back court to Brooklyn

Brooklyn Daily Wed, 18 Jul 2012

Looking ahead for a sweet season- Brooklynettes Christina, Jessica, and Ericka were in fine form on Friday when they served up some Junior’s cheesecake to celebrate the Brooklyn Nets backcourt. Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Brooklyn’s new all-stars are finally here! Joe Johnson and Deron Williams — both multiple NBA all-stars — were given a borough-wide welcome on Friday, amid roaring cheers from Brooklynites, the Brooklynettes carrying a giant Junior’s cheesecake.

How the Iraq war nearly ended London’s Olympic dream

Sydney Morning Herald   Wed, 18 Jul 2012

Sir Craig Reedie recounts the phone call like it was yesterday. It took place in May 2003, less than two months after bombs had begun falling on Baghdad and George W Bush and Tony Blair set about de-throning Saddam Hussein.

On the other end of the line was Tessa Jowell, Britain’s then Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and what she told Reedie was not exactly what he wanted to hear. Jowell was tasked with securing cabinet approval for a London entry in the 2012 Olympic Games race but with the nation’s focus squarely on combat in the Gulf, she was struggling to get the topic on the agenda for the following day’s cabinet meeting. By this time the coalition forces had taken the Iraqi capital – Saddam was not yet captured – but debate was already raging about the legitimacy of the invasion and its political and geopolitical implications.

Bidding buddies … Princess Anne and Sir Craig Reedie in Singapore in 2005 when London was awarded the Olympics. Photo- Bazuki Muhammad

July 8, 2012 Headlines: Dressage, Mrs. Romney’s MS therapy

US Election 2012: Ann Romney’s Olympics dressage hopes for Rafalca and Jan Ebelin

Jan Ebeling riding Rafalca Photo- Jennifer Wenzel/Icon SMI

Daily Telegraph Sat, 07 Jul 2012 09:30 AM PDT

Ann Romney plans to cheer on her horse Rafalca and rider Jan Ebeling in Olympics dressage after crediting his horse riding therapy with the remission of her multiple sclerosis.

For Ann Romney, horse riding started as a therapy and distraction from the pain of the multiple sclerosis with which she was diagnosed 14 years ago. At first, she could spend just a minute or two in the saddle before the discomfort became too much. But since those agonising early days, she has made remarkable progress under the tutelage of Jan Ebeling, a German-born equestrian and instructor in the arcane sport of dressage.

June 10, 2012 Headlines: Mayor Sellers moonlights as NBA commentator ‘n’ Ann Romney’s horse headed to London?

Brad Sellers previews the NBA Finals (Video)

Former NBA Center and Mayor of Warrensville Heights Brad Sellers

News Channel 5 Cleveland Sun, 10 Jun 2012 22:18 PM PDT

CLEVELAND – While serving as the mayor of Warrensville Heights takes up a lot of his time, former NBA center Brad Sellers still finds some time to talk NBA basketball. Will LeBron James win his first ring with the Miami Heat or can Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder cause LeBron to come up short in the Finals for the second year in a row. Sellers previews the NBA Finals and also shares his thoughts on what the Cavaliers should do with their four picks in the upcoming NBA Draft on the June 10, 2012 edition of the Ford Sports Sunday.

Ann Romney’s Horse Places 3rd in Olympic Qualifying

ABC News Sun, 10 Jun 2012 18:09 PM PDT

Ann Romney’s dressage trainer Jan Ebeling and the horse they co-own, Rafalca, came in third this weekend at the United States Equestrian Federation National Dressage Championships in Gladstone, N.J. This competition, which will continue next weekend, also serves as an Olympics qualifying event for the U.S. Dressage Team for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Romney is avidly involved in the expensive world of dressage, sometimes known as “horse ballet,” and credits horseback riding for almost eliminating her symptoms from multiple sclerosis, which she was diagnosed with in 1998.