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Lawsuit: City, MTA are no help in $20M Gowanus Canal powerhouse cleanup
Two philanthropies working to convert the old powerhouse on Brooklyn’s infamously polluted Gowanus Canal into an art center say they’ve spent $20 million cleaning the site of toxins — and claim in a lawsuit that the city and Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which contaminated the site, haven’t chipped in a penny. BRT Powerhouse LLP and Gemini...
One quarterback remaining stands above rest in NFL playoffs
Patrick Mahomes took a backseat to Lamar Jackson’s magic carpet ride through the regular season. On conference championship Sunday, however, Jackson will be watching while Mahomes will be the marquee attraction, the one we watch hoping to see something we have never seen before from a quarterback, chasing his first Super Bowl championship as Chiefs...
Sophomore Ramel Lloyd is becoming Taft's latest elite guard prospect
Taft's Ramel Lloyd scores 30 points in win over El Camino Real while St. John Bosco defeats Mater Dei in a Trinity League showdown.
Southern Section announces playoff divisions for Spring 2020 sports
The CIF Southern Section announced on Friday playoff divisions for the Spring 2020 seasons.
Fantasy football: Take a shot on these four players this weekend
Key NFL championship weekend picks you should consider for FanDuel and DraftKings contests: Aaron Rodgers QB, Packers, at 49ers (FanDuel $8,000/DraftKings $6,100) Sure, he has the toughest matchup, but he also is the most accomplished of all the QBs remaining, and he is projected to be the least-owned among them this weekend. Derrick Henry RB,...
Lawsuits against former Brooklyn prosecutor who wiretapped cop, colleague settled
A disgraced former Brooklyn prosecutor who did time in federal prison for running illegal wiretaps to spy on a love interest at the NYPD and a colleague has settled lawsuits that her two targets filed against her. Tara Lenich, who used to supervise the violent criminal enterprises bureau at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, tearfully...
A 14-year-old girl was kidnapped by three men and used Snapchat to alert her friends, police say
According to the developers of Snapchat, friends on the app can choose to share their locations with one another if the app is open.
Tucker Carlson: Democrats want US to be more like California -- the state that's driving residents away
Tucker Carlson continued to take on the homeless crisis Friday night, this time tying it to the 2020 presidential election and asking viewers what kind of impact the election will have on the United States.
What we know about the deadly avalanche at the Alpine Meadows ski resort
One person is dead and another seriously injured after an avalanche at Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows ski resort. Here's what we know.
President Trump: Virginia Proves Again Democrats 'Will Take Your Guns'
On January 17, 2020, President Donald Trump pointed to the gun control situation in Virginia, noting that it proves once more the Democrats "will take your guns" if voted into office.
House Democrats Release Documents Corroborating Lev Parnas' Claims He Worked With Devin Nunes Aide
House Democrats released a fresh batch of evidence for the Trump impeachment trial Friday, highlighted by text messages between Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas and an aide to Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.).
Republicans trying to ignore the many things we've learned since Trump was impeached
The big news closing the week was the unveiling of President Donald Trump's impeachment defense team and the release of more documents related to Lev Parnas, the indicted associate of Rudy Giuliani. And we'll have more on that in a moment.
Musk's SpaceX to simulate rocket failure in final astronaut capsule test
Elon Musk's SpaceX is gearing up to destroy one of its own rockets on Saturday to test a crucial emergency abort system on an unmanned astronaut capsule, the company's final milestone test before flying NASA astronauts from U.S. soil.
New Jeffrey Epstein accuser says he molested her at 13, told her to wear children’s underwear
A woman claiming she was Jeffrey Epstein’s “first-known victim” says she was sexually abused by the now-dead pedophile — who called himself her “Godfather” — when she was 13 years old. Jane Doe met Epstein and his friend, Ghislaine Maxwell, in the summer of 1994 at Michigan’s Interlochen Arts Camp, where she was in voice...
Eric Trump: Reports that Joe's brother 'leveraged' family name show 'the Bidens are a business'
Reports that Joe Biden's brother "leveraged" the family name for personal gain, coming months after similar allegations against the former vice president's son Hunter, are proof the famous Delaware family is "a business," Eric Trump said Friday.
4 killed, 1 wounded in Utah shooting
Four people were shot to death in a residence in Grantsville, Utah, Friday night, according to police.
Hernandez: Damaged by its scandals, MLB faces an even bigger threat that it can't control
From the sublime to the ridiculous: MLB commissioner is releasing official denials of unsubstantiated allegations started by unverified social media accounts.
'90 Day Fiancé' star faces charges of abusing his ex
Relationships are complicated, especially under the glare of cameras. Not to mention felony charges.        
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Rangers look like ‘different’ team with deadline decisions looming
David Quinn looked directly at a few members of the media who have followed his Rangers all season, and the coach succinctly made his point. “You guys have watched — we do look different, right?” he said. “We do look different.” This was immediately after Quinn’s club beat the Islanders for a second straight time,...
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Holman Jenkins: The Comey coverup unravels
Even Adam Schiff has acknowledged that James Comey’s actions in 2016 may represent the most important and significant Russian influence on the election.
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Yang's wife, Evelyn, says she was sexually assaulted by her doctor during pregnancy
Presidential candidate Andrew Yang’s wife, Evelyn Yang, claims she was sexually assaulted by her OBGYN while she was pregnant with her first son
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Four teachers sue Delta Air Lines over California fuel dump
At a news conference, the teachers described the fuel as drizzling down like raindrops with "overwhelming" fumes.
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Lemon: African Americans won't vote for 'both sides' party
CNN's Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon discuss President Trump's relationship with black voters. According to a new Washington Post-Ipsos poll, 83% of African Americans believe that Trump is racist.
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Titans’ Logan Ryan on playing for Joe Judge, free agency, Tyreek Hill rebuttal
Titans cornerback Logan Ryan, a Voorhees, N.J., native and former Rutgers star, huddles with Steve Serby before Sunday’s AFC Championship game against the Chiefs. Q: You’ve had a career year. What are your thoughts on your upcoming free agency? A: Excited. I’m part of a player rep here, and players have fought for free agency,...
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Cassius Winston breaks assists record in Michigan State's 67-55 win over Wisconsin
Cassius Winston's alley-oop to Xavier Tillman gave him 817 career assists, breaking the record held by Mateen Cleaves        
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DeAndre Jordan injury forcing Nets to get ‘creative’
DeAndre Jordan will not need surgery for his dislocated middle finger and is expected to be reevaluated next week. Jordan did not return following the first half of Wednesday’s 117-106 loss at Philadelphia after having his finger reset on the sidelines. The big man previously suffered a right knee contusion in the loss to the...
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Florida Woman Fined $53,000 for Feeding Alligators and Vultures Behind House
And that wasn't the only wildlife drawn to her property by her nightly feedings.
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In spite of this week's storm, Northern California's seasonal precipitation remains below normal
Precipitation in key Northern California watersheds continues to hover below normal, even after a recent cold storm dropped heavy snow
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Cuomo: Trump believes power should be abused
CNN's Chris Cuomo takes a closer look at President Trump's views on corruption.
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Spotify may buy The Ringer. Here’s why that makes sense.
Ringer CEO and founder Bill Simmons at a Vanity Fair conference in 2015 | Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for Vanity Fair Spotify thinks podcasting could be really big. Bill Simmons built a podcast empire, and now he could cash in. Last year, Spotify made a splash when it bought a series of podcasting companies. Now it may be at it again: The company is in conversations to buy The Ringer, the podcast-centric startup founded by sports media entrepreneur Bill Simmons. Spotify, which spent about $400 million in 2019 by acquiring three podcasting companies — Gimlet Media, Anchor FM, and Parcast — has had talks with Simmons that date back at least as far as October 2019, according to people familiar with discussions. It’s not clear how advanced the talks are now; Spotify may also be interested in buying other podcast companies. If a Spotify-Ringer deal happens, it would signal that Spotify thinks the podcast deals it did last year were money well-spent, and that podcasting will be an important part of the music company’s future. What it wouldn’t indicate is what would happen to The Ringers’ popular sports and culture podcasts, which are currently available for free on every platform, including Apple’s dominant Podcast app. It’s a decent bet, though, that Spotify would at least be interested in getting Simmons’ group to create more Spotify-exclusive podcasts, like the “Hottest Take” series it started making for Spotify last September. The Wall Street Journal first reported on the talks. Reps for Spotify and The Ringer declined to comment; Simmons hasn’t responded to a request for comment. (Vox Media, which owns Recode, has a commercial relationship with The Ringer.) There’s some basic logic to a would-be deal: Last year Spotify announced that podcasting would become an important part of its business, and it has been making moves to both push its own, exclusive podcasts, as well as to promote podcasts in general. And while The Ringer has a web publishing operation, and has made forays into videos and TV shows, the bulk of its revenue comes from podcasting. Last year, the Journal reported that the company was generating more than $15 million a year from podcasts. Simmons has been immersed in podcasting since 2007, when he was a rising star at Disney’s ESPN unit. After ESPN let him go in 2015, Simmons started his own site. HBO initially backed the site, and it also hired him to create a short-lived TV show he hosted, along with other programming. Simmons has never disclosed if he has other investors. Simmons has talked about selling his company before. Last year he discussed a sale with AT&T’s WarnerMedia, proposing a price around $100 million, according to a source familiar with discussions. WarnerMedia was already working with Simmons via its HBO unit; it also owns Turner, the TV network that owns Bleacher Report, a digital sports publisher it acquired in 2012. Talks between WarnerMedia and Simmons stopped before news that Spotify was buying Gimlet broke. Since Spotify embarked on its podcast buying spree, lots of podcast-related businesses have imagined that their value has increased, so it’s quite possible that Simmons feel the same. Spotify has said it wants to invest in podcasts for several reasons. It thinks Spotify users who listen to podcasts are more likely to pay for a premium version of Spotify, and less likely to stop using the service. Spotify also wants to use podcasting to build up its advertising business; earlier this month, it announced plans to provide ad targeting for podcast advertisers using Spotify listeners’ demographics and behavior. That’s the data marketers already use for standard Web ads — using the same tech that tells advertisers whether you looked at slippers on Zappos, or which website you visited before you got to — but hasn’t been widely available for podcast advertisers. If it delivers, the conventional ad business believes, a lot more ad dollars would come into the industry. Podcasting is growing fast, but it is still a niche business compared to the rest of the ad world. Last year, Edison Research estimated that 32 percent of the people in the US over age 12 — that’s 90 million people — listened to a podcast each month. That’s up from 11 percent a decade ago. But advertisers usually take a while to follow users. Podcasting advertising is supposed to generate more than $860 million this year and $1 billion in 2021. But the rest of digital advertising brings in well more than $107 billion in the US. And Spotify believes it can get better economics from podcasting than it does from the music labels who are responsible for the overwhelming majority of its business. Eventually - and theoretically — if podcasting becomes big enough — Spotify’s overall margins could improve, and that could convince Wall Street that Spotify is more valuable. Up until now, Apple has dominated podcasting, primarily because of the popularity of its iOS operating system, which features a built-in podcasting app. But while Apple’s media chief Eddy Cue, who likes Simmons, would likely be unhappy to see Spotify lock up his company and podcasts in an exclusive deal — if that’s what it ended up doing — I would be surprised if he made a counter-offer. That’s because Apple executives say they don’t view podcasting as a business and aren’t likely to change their perspective soon: Right now, podcasting is overwhelmingly an ad-based business that’s free to users. And Apple does very little in the ad business, and has staked out a pro-privacy, anti-ad targeting position. Unless Apple’s theology changes — which is very unlikely — or consumers show a willingness to pay for podcasts, instead of listening to free, ad-supported ones, Apple is unlikely to think podcasting will be a business it wants to participate in. That said, Apple has been expanding its modest podcasting team (Apple recently hired a Vox Media employee who specialized in podcast promotion), and wants to promote podcast consumption on its platform. Apple has also talked to podcast companies about making a handful of exclusive podcasts, but so far those seem limited to companion podcasts for other Apple projects, like its Apple TV shows. Worth noting: The Spotify-Ringer talks are happening at the same time that sports media startup Barstool Sports may be sold to Penn National, a regional gambling company. Probably coincidental: Both The Ringer and Barstool are led by men who started blogging about Boston sports.
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Charlie Hurt: 'Dyed-in-the-wool Communist' Bernie Sanders getting played by the Democratic Party bosses
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., is once again getting the short end of the stick from Democratic Party leaders, Fox News contributor Charlie Hurt said Friday on "Hannity."
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Ex-con hedgie Boaz Manor charged in $30M bitcoin fraud scheme
A convicted hedge-fund swindler assumed a fake name and donned a disguise to lure investors into a $30 million bitcoin fraud in New York that spanned two years, the feds alleged on Friday. Boaz Manor — a 46-year-old entrepreneur who got a four-year prison sentence in Canada in 2010 after misappropriating more than $100 million...
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Elliott: Nathan Chen, Alysia Liu look to take safe route to World Championship berths
Nathan Chen and Alysa Liu probably won't need to push themselves too hard in the U.S. Figure Skating Championships to make it to the World Championships.
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Ted Lieu: 'Obnoxious' Trump Should Apologize to Military Leaders
Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA) said on Friday's broadcast of MSNBC's "Hardball" that President Donald Trump should apologize to the military leaders, referencing reported remarks from Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and Carol Leonnig’s new book, "A Very Stable Genius."
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Anti-abortion group announces $52 million budget to reelect Trump and anti-abortion Senate majority
A major anti-abortion group announced on Friday a $52 million budget in battleground states to reelect President Donald Trump and an anti-abortion Senate majority in 2020.
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Alleged serial bank robber sprung by New York bail law turns himself in
An alleged serial bank robber in New York whose repeated heists cast light on a new bail-reform law unexpectedly turned himself into authorities Friday.
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NYC congestion pricing tolls must be set in public, says open government expert
The board that will recommend congestion pricing tolls to enter Midtown must deliberate in public and not behind closed doors, the state Committee on Open Government has ruled. The MTA last fall claimed the Traffic Mobility Review Board is not covered by the Open Meetings Law, and therefore its meetings are not open to the...
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Charlie Hunnam would ‘star opposite’ Meghan Markle if the roles were ‘good’ for the both of them
If Meghan Markle ever decides to return to acting, she might already have a co-star. 
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CDC: Season’s Flu Vaccine ‘Mismatch’ for Main Strain Hitting Children
The flu season is far from over, yet a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states this season’s vaccine for the flu strain primarily affecting children is only a 58 percent match.
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Sean Hannity: Lev Parnas feeds into Democrats' 'psychotic anti-Trump rage'
Sean Hannity took on Democrats agains Friday night, criticizing their efforts before next week's likely Senate trial.
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Amsterdam to Buy Debts of Young Adults In Order to Help Them Get Jobs and Pursue Higher Education
A program is expected to start in February in Amsterdam which will purchase the debts of young people and help them obtain higher education and employment.
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A timeline of Oprah Winfrey's involvement with the Russell Simmons documentary
When Oprah Winfrey signed on to produce a documentary about Russell Simmons' accusers, no one expected what would transpire. Here's a timeline of those events.
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State Democrats stay the course on bail reform law despite outrage
The state’s new bail law is emptying out the city’s jails and putting unrepentant inmates back on the streets, but officials appear loathe to roll back any of the reforms. Department of Correction statistics show there were a total of 5,569 people in city jails on Thursday, a 19% drop from the 6,877 counted on...
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'Babylon Bee' CEO: 'How funny is it that CNN is coming after us for spreading disinformation?'
The CEO of The Babylon Bee, a popular self-described "Christian News Satire" website that often pokes fun at political figures, responded Friday to liberal media critics who want it out of business.
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Diego Ferriera plans on showing off jiu-jitsu game vs. Anthony Pettis at UFC 246
Diego Ferreira is looking to show a different side of his game vs. Anthony Pettis at UFC 246.        Related StoriesUFC 246 ceremonial weigh-in faceoffs video: Fighters meet up one final timeConor McGregor in one word: What UFC fighters think of 'The Notorious'Who ya got?! Fighter predictions for Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone at UFC 246 
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Supreme Court to Decide Whether Electoral College Members Are Bound by Their State's Popular Vote
Two cases, brought by electors in Colorado and Washington, will be heard to determine a verdict.
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Secret to the Lakers' success in the first half of the season is hardly a secret
From players on the roster to their coaches and observers, there is a general consensus about this Lakers team. They really like each other.
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Dershowitz plays down role on Trump impeachment team
Dershowitz said he will serve in a “limited” capacity and will not be a part of the president’s tactical strategic team.
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