Friday, February 6, 2009

Style and Focus News Bites

** Ashley Judd Protest Against Gov. Sarah Palin for Promoting Aerial Killing of Wolves. According to The Huffington Post (, Ashley Judd stars in a new campaign targeted at Sarah Palin's alleged "anti-conservation agenda" and her promotion of the killing of wolves and bears in Alaska.

The group that Judd is working with is the Defenders Action Fund which have a new Website, In a video, Judd condemns Palin for promoting the aerial killing of wolves and even accuses her of suggesting $150 bounties for the severed forelegs of killed wolves. "Now back in Alaska, Palin is again casting aside science and championing the slaughter of wildlife," Judds recites somberly. "Palin even proposed a $150 bounty for the severed foreleg of each killed wolf. And now she is encouraging even more aerial killing. it is time to stop Sarah Palin and stop this senseless savagery."

** As Hotels Struggle for Business, Some Guests Find an Upside to the Struggling Economy. The upside for many guests are: bargain rates, less-crowded hotels and rooms available at the last minute at most popular hotels. Many also are enjoying improved service and special treatment, such as free upgrades to suites or club floors, as hotels roll out the red carpet to try to attract and hold on to customers. However, despite the good fortune of guests, many hotels have laid off workers or decreased their work hours resulting in guests having to wait longer to check in and out, have rooms made up and have cars returned by the valets. Luxury hotels are feeling the biggest decline in service, many travelers who used to stay at luxury hotels "are trading down," staying at less-expensive ones, says Will Marks, an industry analyst for JMP Securities. (USA Today)

** Emma Watson (The Tale of Despereaux and Harry Potter), has decorated and signed a Blue Peter plate for the Blue Peter's Mission Nutrition Appeal. The plate is currently being auction on Ebay (click here for link). The goal of the appeal is to provide meals to over 2 million children worldwide.

** In celebration of Black History Month, Payless ShoeSource Has Launched the Payless Inspiring Possibilities Scholarship Program for Minority Youth. Through the new program, Payless is selling a limited-edition I Believe necklace for only $4 (click picture for better view) in more than 800 stores nationwide and, while supplies last, and will donate 100 percent of the net profits of necklace sales, with a minimum donation of $35,000, to a newly developed scholarship program established with the National Urban League (NUL). This is the first-ever retail partnership for the NUL. Payless said it expects the NUL to distribute a minimum of a dozen $2,500 scholarships to African American and other minority youth through its signature program, Project Ready.

"Youth and education are critical to the future of our nation," said LuAnn Via, president and CEO of Payless. "Our efforts this February are focused on supporting African American and other minority youth with our Payless Inspiring Possibilities Scholarship program. The unique, limited-edition I Believe necklace is available for only $4 -- a price point accessible to so many. Together, we are truly celebrating Black History Month with this fun, fashionable and affordable item and benefiting youth in the process -- providing strong opportunities for higher education and financial support to help make academic dreams come true." For more information on the I Believe necklace or the Payless Inspiring Possibilities Scholarship program, please visit (Press Release)

** Angelina Jolie plea for more freedom to thousands of Burmese refugees that have been locked inside camps for up to 20 years in Thailand. After Jolie's visit to Thailand's Ban Mai Nai Soi refugee center, asked the Thailand government to give approximately 110,000 refugees in the northern part of the country freedom to move around and seek higher education. "I was saddened to meet a 21-year-old woman who was born in a refugee camp, who has never even been out of the camp and is now raising her own child in a camp," Jolie said in a statement. (People magazine)

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