The Upshot
  • John GoodmanJohn Goodman, polo tycoon

    John Goodman (not the actor) has been ordered to pay $46 million to the parents of a 23-year-old man, Scott Wilson, whom Goodman killed while driving under the influence.

    The case made headlines because Goodman, the founder of the International Polo Club Palm Beach, attempted to avoid paying the settlement by legally adopting his 42-year-old girlfriend, Heather Hutchins, as his daughter. Prosecuting lawyers argued that Goodman, the heir of an air conditioning fortune, was attempting to shield his substantial assets. The adoption entitled Hutchins to a third of his children's $300 million trust. Lawyers for Goodman's two biological children filed a lawsuit in response to their father's actions.

    Of course, there is also a criminal case. Goodman faces up to 30 years in prison for manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident. He was found guilty last month, but Goodman's legal team is currently seeking a new trial for its client. The team alleges jury misconduct and claims that an

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  • For marijuana users, 4/20 is code for the day to openly celebrate the illegal drug.

    Click image for more photos

    Searches on "420" have been lighting up on Yahoo! and in the twitterverse, with "4/20" and "Mary Jane Day" becoming trending topics.

    In Austin, Texas, Willie Nelson (a famous fan of the herb) will help unveil a statue of himself at, you guessed it, 4:20 p.m.

    At the University of Colorado at Boulder, the college is in a less celebratory mood. Officials will be putting a stop to the annual 4/20 rally that has  involved 10,000 celebrants descending on the campus and lighting up.

    The higher institution of learning has a reputation for being the top party school in the country, and no more so on 4/20, when people assemble to demand the legalization of the drug.

    The university spokesman Bronson Hilliard told the Associated Press, "We don't consider this a protest. We consider this people smoking pot in the sunshine," adding, "This is a gathering of people engaging in an illegal

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  • The scandal surrounding the president's Secret Service advance team  in Cartagena, Colombia, which allegedly patronized prostitutes, is growing: There is word that more agents will retire. And some racy photos of one escort were surfaced by the New York Daily News.

    Eleven agents and 10 members of the military allegedly consorted with escorts the night before the president's arrival for the Summit of the Americas. As a result, the Secret Service is seeking to fire one supervisor tied to the incident. Another is retiring, and a third will be allowed to retire.

    More resignations are expected soon, according to Rep. Pete King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. King said, "It is our understanding the resignations could come today or tomorrow."

    Because the prostitutes were required to leave their identification with the hotel where the agents were staying, 20 or 21 women have been identified with the scandal, including one woman who, as reported by the New York Times, was

    Read More »from Secret Service escort scandal: More details emerge


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