The Lookout
  • Top 5 video moments from the BP oil disaster

    This summer's BP oil disaster was historic in both its scale and duration. But it was also a source of riveting public discussion, much of it captured on video that received lots of buzz. Here are, in our opinion, five of the more memorable video moments of the spill:

    1. Rep. Charlie Melancon breaks down: Melancon -- whose district covers many of the coastal Louisiana parishes hit hardest by the spill -- broke down during a House Energy subcommittee meeting on May 27 while talking about the damage the spill has caused:

    2. Rep. Anh "Joseph" Cao suggests BP officials should commit suicide: At a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on the BP oil spill, Cao -- another Louisiana congressman whose constituent's lives were disrupted by the spill -- spelled out to BP America President Lamar McKay the Japanese tradition of harakiri, while advising members of the BP brass consider the practice. Ritual suicide, the congressman explained, permitted disgraced  high-ranking public figures 

    Read More »from Top 5 video moments from the BP oil disaster
  • AP071107177611Conservative Christian talk show host and one-time presidential candidate Pat Robertson said on his influential show "The 700 Club" this week that locking people up for possessing marijuana is "ruining young people."

    In a segment about faith-based rehabilitation for prisoners, Robertson criticized the vote-getting "tough on crime" ethos of politicians, saying the prison system is not working and locking people up is not the answer. He then specifically singled out mandatory minimum sentences for possessing marijuana as a major source of the problem.

    "We're locking up people that take a couple puffs of marijuana and next thing they know they've got 10 years," he said. "We've got to take a look at what we're considering crimes. I'm not exactly for the use of drugs, don't get me wrong. I just believe that criminalizing marijuana, criminalizing the possession of a few ounces of pot -- that kind of thing -- it's costing us a fortune and it's ruining young people.

    "Young people go in as youths, they come out as hardened criminals and it's not a good thing."

    The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world. This graph shows how the percentage of prisoners skyrocketed since the early 20th century.

    Read More »from Pat Robertson: Pot possession shouldn’t be a crime
  • Fannie and Freddie heart foreclosure mills

    foreclosures 17-39-35We've told you about how big banks like Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo used "foreclosure-mill" law firms -- known for cutting corners on paperwork, or worse -- to help speed struggling borrowers from their homes, in some cases improperly. A task force of all 50 state attorneys general is currently probing the issue.

    But a lengthy Washington Post report makes clear that the problem wasn't limited to the private lenders. Government-backed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac hired law firms that used those same practices. In fact, they hired the very same Florida-based lawyer, David J. Stern, who we named the poster boy for shady foreclosure practices.

    Asked in a 2000 deposition why Fannie Mae had brought in Stern's firm, despite clear evidence of red flags, Fannie Mae associate general counsel Susan Reid replied: "We felt that timelines and the time it took to foreclose on a piece of property ... could be improved." With "every month" she said, "we're losing money."

    Read More »from Fannie and Freddie heart foreclosure mills


(3,627 Stories)

Follow Yahoo! News