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National Business Development Manager
with minimum seven years experience and
current book of business. Strategically located throughout
US in various targeted industries.
Click Here for more info.

Western Equipment Finance, a subsidiary of Western State Bank
established in 1901, solicits originations throughout the US and
provides funding solutions for a wide range of industries

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Salvation Army Kettle Donors
  Classified Ads---Syndicator
   Placard---Leasing is Like Living with a Girl
    Classified Ads---Help Wanted
The List---November
 Fallout from CMC Continues in Nevada Federal Court
  by Tom McCurrin
    Loose Ends: E.A.R./HL Leasing/NorVergence/Brican America
    Operation Lease Fleece/Allied Health Care Services
Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
 Tax indemnity in “true leases”
  Top Stories December 20--22
   Lake Charles, Louisiana Adopt-a-Dog
Special Year’s Best Edition
  By Fernando F. Croce
    Classified ads—Credit

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (collection)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months

     6.6% of elderly people in US major depression
      SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer
   Sports Briefs---
     Football Poem
      California Nuts Briefs---
        "Gimme that Wine"
   This Day in American History
      Daily Puzzle
        Weather, USA or specific area
          Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release” and was not written by Leasing News nor information verified, but from the source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “by line.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer. It is considered “bias” as it is the writer’s viewpoint.



Salvation Army Kettle Donors




Andrew Bender
Edward Castagna
John Caulfield
Dale Davis
Gary DiLillo
John Enyart
Barbara Griffith
Shawn Halladay
Randy Haug
Ken Kelly
Sam Khedkar
Dale Kluga
Bruce Kropschot
Fred Kuhnen
Allan Levine
Bruce Lurie
Patrick McCarthy
David Maslyk
Jim Misener
Kevin Nash
Gerald Oestreich
Klaus Pache
Susan Robert
Gary Saulter
David Silverman
Ivan Somyk
Jason Spates
Jerry Sprole
Robert Teichman
Beckham Thomas
Curtis Webster
Rick Wilbur
Bruce Winter
Rosanne Wilson

There were anonymous donors, as well as recognition should
be given to John Caulfield who matched the $1,000 goal
by adding another $1,000.



Hugh Swandel

Thank you very much.
Kit Menkin


Classified Ads---Syndicator


Overland Park, KS
Top Syndicator from single deal to portfolios. 20+ yrs exp.
Available for contract work or full time position.
Nationwide contacts.

All “free” categories “job wanted” ads:

((Please Click on Bulletin Board to learn more information))
(Leasing News provides this ad “gratis” as a means
to help support the growth of Lease Police)






Leasing Industry Help Wanted

Carlsbad, California

Vendor Account Manager

- Strong background w/emphasis application-only marketplace
- Commission Only and Results Oriented Sales Professional
- Relationships in place to provide immediate opportunities
- Vendor marketing and program development experience

Documentation/Funding Coordinator
Coordination of all documents with the Lessee and Vendor, Insurance, Vendors Invoices, Title Processing,
and Equipment Deliveries.

Experience with Vision and -- big plus



Interviewing Leasing Professionals With Proven Track Record and Established Book of Business.
Envision Provides: 1) Monthly Base Salary 2) Established Funding Sources 3) Fun Working Environment 4) Full Benefits (Health Insurance, 401k)
5) Aggressive Commission Structure.
Resumes To:
Contact: Stephanie Cruz (949) 225-1740

Envision Capital Group is dedicated to providing the best in class products and service to our employees, customers, vendors and partners in the small and middle ticket commercial finance industry. With over 50 years of combined experience we have the knowledge, skills, abilities and relationships to help you reach your goals.


National Business Development Manager
with minimum seven years experience and
current book of business. Strategically located throughout
US in various targeted industries.
Click Here for more info.

Western Equipment Finance, a subsidiary of Western State Bank
established in 1901, solicits originations throughout the US and
provides funding solutions for a wide range of industries

For information on placing a help wanted ad, please click here:

Please see our Job Wanted section for possible new employees.


The List---November

--- Mergers, Acquisitions & Changes
"The Good, the Bad and the Ugly"-

Navitas Lease Corp. dba Navitas Leasing, Ponte Verde Beach, FL. (RLC Leasing Division, Columbia, South Carolina (11/11) Obtains California Finance Lender license. (11/11) Blue Mountain invests $22 million. Also reports $50 million expansion of its credit facility with Wells Fargo Capital Finance.

Puget Leasing, Bellevue, WA (11/11) May close and bank with it. Also appeals decision to pay prevailing attorney fees.

Pawnee Leasing, Fort Collins, Colorado (11/11) “...posted another successive quarter of growth in its portfolio, which now exceeds US $125 million for the first time. Net charge-offs during the quarter were also modest at US $1.1 million, contributing to the strong results."

Element Financial, Toronto, Canada (11/11) Steve Hudson says "Now's the Time!" Plans major expansion, including more business in USA.

First American Equipment Finance, Fairport, NY (11/11) William “Bill” Verhelle, CEO, First American Equipment Finance, past president of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association, goes against the trend to build his company's business. He has been consolidating his offices to his Fairport, New York office, and in addition, a plan to add more employees with his company’s approach that has been bringing them success using Cisco's Show and Share and other internet/software programs.

LEAF Financial, Philadelphia, PA (11/11) LEAF Commercial takes over LEAF Financial.

Alphabetical List:

Chronological List:


Fallout from CMC Continues in Nevada Federal Court
by Tom McCurrin

The collapse of Commercial Money Center (“CMC”) has spawned millions of dollars of losses and attorney fees in the last ten years. Most of the litigation, as between the sureties which wrote performance bonds, and the lender-investors, which pumped millions of dollars into CMC, have been litigated in an Ohio District Court where all the litigation was coordinated.

The Ohio Court transferred one of the cases, between the FDIC (Receiver for NetBank) and Safeco Insurance, was transferred to Nevada for final disposition.

In FDIC v. Safeco, 2011 WL 4834305 (D.Nev 2011), Safeco wrote performance bonds for the leases, and many of the leases, Safeco claimed were phony. Safeco, unwilling to honor the bonds, refused to pay. The FDIC, as Receiver for the failed NetBank, sued Safeco under its performance bonds, and brought a Summary Judgment against Safeco on a multiple count Complaint for Bad Faith.

Under the applicable law, which was oddly Georgia because NetBank was located there, in order to prevail on bad faith against an insurer, the insured must place the insurer on notice of the claim prior to filing suit. It was conceded that the FDIC did not do so, and the Court quickly disposed of that claim.

The FDIC also brought a claim for the Breach of the Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing, a claim remarkably similar to Bad Faith, and again, the Court concluded that since the FDIC didn’t give Safeco a heads up, the FDIC couldn’t maintain the claim, and the Court dismissed this count as well.

This routine decision is hardly the death knell of this action, and is merely dispositive of some of the tort claim whereby the FDIC could have obtained punitive damages against Safeco. It should be noted that in the Ohio litigation, the sureties have not fared very well, and most have cut deals with the lender investors, or in some cases the Bankruptcy Trustee. Given the fact that the claim of the FDIC is now cut down to actual size, this decision may provide an impetus to settlement of that claim.

Insofar as an analysis of the decision, at the risk of stating the obvious, insurers and bond sureties are notorious for denying claims, and when the lender investors underwrote these sub-prime leases for investment purposes, they relied heavily upon the strength of sureties’ strength and failed to adequately investigate the underlying lease pools, CMC’s principals and its licensing status. In short, the investment pools were approved based mainly on the strength of the sureties, and the investor lenders certainly missed their mark relying on the willingness of the Surety to perform.

From a procedural analysis, any bad faith claim by an equipment lessor against a Surety must be preceded by a demand, which was not done here, for unexplained reasons.

Tom McCurnin
Barton, Klugman & Oetting
350 South Grand Ave.
Suite 2200
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Direct Phone: (213) 617-6129
Cell (213) 268-8291
Fax: (213) 625-1832

Visit our Web Site at:

FDIC Case:

Previous Articles by Tom McCurnin:

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Gary DiLillo, President 440.871.0555 or



Loose Ends: E.A.R./HL Leasing/NorVergence/Brican America
Operation Lease Fleece/Allied Health Care Services

This came from Don Blody, now at Madison Capital, questioning tax returns and a search by Leasing News discovered the Greyhound fraud connection.

The various cases involving Sheldon Player and Equipment Acquisition Finance continue, and while his estranged wife Dorothy Malone has declared bankruptcy, he has not, and a recent event regarding gambling debts, winnings, have resulted in another case involving the IRS and the trustee regarding amounts paid that the trustee considers overpayment and due the creditors of the bankruptcy.

In the meantime, Player is still a player. There are casinos in Nevada where Sheldon Player is still able to play from Winnemucca to Wendover, Nevada and others, but perhaps not Las Vegas as the Equipment Acquisition Resource Bankruptcy Trustee is seeking money from various casinos when he gambled.

The trustees are still seeking $1.785 million from Wynn casinos, $471,000 from the Rio, $236,500 from the Luxor, and $30,000 from Harrah's.

Equipment Acquisition Resources from October 2005 to October 2009 sent 21 checks to Wynn totaling almost $1.8 million so Player, Malone, Anstett or others personally could allegedly engage in gambling and gaming activities at one or more of the Wynn casinos. Wynn attorneys claim the money was not the property of Equipment Acquisition Resources, but rather was compensation to its executives Player, Malone and Anstett.

There are other casinos, according to court documents, $4.3 million in payments to the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Ind., $584,000 in payments to the Ameristar Casino in East Chicago, Ind., and $30,000 to the Palms hotel-casino in Las Vegas. That Sheldon is still playing may be verified when the FBI picked him up for questioning at the Denver, Colorado airport and he had just returned by private Casino plan with $900,000 cash in a large duffle bag.

In the company bankruptcy proceedings whatever equipment existed has been sold, as well as rooms of equipment in various stages also deposed. Those who were asked to take a bid describe it as equipment on top of equipment with dirt and dust everywhere. And while there are some open ends, the IRS case seems to be the major event.

The FBI has not filed a case, although Player has served time in jail for the Greyhound fraud, and also be on probation. Readers ask why ex-con Player is not in jail, and is out spending money, enjoying life.

Evidently he knows how to play his cards, as the story about his actions began in Leasing News May 2, 2007.

Previous Stories:

John Otto

These were originally questions from investors brought to Leasing News concerning American Express Leasing contracts.

Leasing News reported HL Leasing President Dan Ramirez and Chief Financial Officer Andy Fernandez were found guilty in a trial before a jury in Fresno, where they were ordered to pay $46.5 million to 1,200 victims.

Kathleen Otto, the late John Otto's wife, even though accounting was done at their home, was not found guilty by the jury, as reportedly they did not find evidence that her actions caused any financial harm to the victims.

However Ara Jabagchourian, principal, Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy, LLP, Burlingame, California believes she could be held liable under the theory she was a shareholder of the three companies Otto had founded that reportedly defrauded the victims.

After winning the case against the president and CFO, Jabagchourian filed a brief basically to try and tie either Kathleen Otto as an individual or as the trustee for the family trust into the case, which the judge is considering and will make a ruling. He then will seek assets available.

In the meantime, many of the victims have not been able to file for loses as they claim it has not been determined a Ponzi scheme, although others on the blog say they have filed losses, one stated: and received "... over a 550K lost I received approximately $123K back from the IRS. It did take them a long time to finally send a check but I did get it with no further documents required."

There are those who lost their house, their retirement, and have gone back to work, moved in with their children, and others whose lives have been changed as dramatically due to the money they invested and appear will never see again.

This story began May 11, 2009.

Previous Stories:


Salzano to go to Trial January 23

These originally were complaints to Leasing News from NorVergence lessees.

NorVergence was forced into Chapter 11 on June 30, 2004, but was soon converted into a Chapter 7 on July 14, 2004 and assigned to Judge Rosemary Gambardella, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of New Jersey. There are over 1100 queries, plus, as other reports are included in various queries, and the case is being wound up.

Here is one of the latest: “Application for Compensation for Porzio, Bromberg & Newman, P.C., as Special Litigation Counsel to Charles M. Forman, Chapter 7 Trustee, Special Counsel, period: 11/1/2006 to 8/31/2008, fee: $1,529,871.00, expenses: $56,085.51”

The founder of NorVergence Thomas Salzano is scheduled for trial January 23, 2012 in Lake Charles Louisiana by the Attorney General's Office in conjunction with the local DA.

Calcasieu County District Attorney John DeRosier told KPLC News, "The 11,000 plus victims around the country and the total amount of money that they have lost through this scheme is in excess of $300 million and nobody was doing anything about it. Now, they come to Calcasieu Parish and that's where we draw the line. We're not afraid to go after a complicated case. I think that it is a legitimate case of fraud."

Assistant Attorney General David Caldwell told KPCL other states and the Federal Trade Commission has taken civil action against Salzano but Louisiana is the first to pursue a criminal case."

“We are the ONLY state or federal agency to have followed this through. We had a total of five victims in Louisiana out of 13,000. For the only individual business owner in our state we obtained FULL restitution from LIBERTY bank in an amount over 160k, and in order to do that we filed criminal charges for filing false public records in Shreveport Louisiana. We were the only agency to have obtained those results on behalf of its citizens. We've been busting our butts on this case, have run up against everything you can think of that would delay getting this case done, and we're still fighting. The wheels of justice turn slow, but that's not our fault. I can't make other states or federal agencies fall in line."

This story began June 29, 2004.

Previous Stories:

This was brought to Leasing News attention by Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP, of Lease Police.

"It appears Brican may be in the process of trying to sell parts of its lease portfolio and in doing an investigation, found NCMIC Finance Corporation dba Professional Solutions Financial Services (PSFS), Clive, Iowa has a claim against Brican for $38 million involving 1672 leases. It appears very similar to the NorVergence situation but in this case the seller of the equipment in this case specifically provided the lessee with a letter to make lease payments in certain situations, unknown to PSFS, according to the complaint."

Brican America, Miami, Florida filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy July 13, 2010. It does not appear concluded. A 370 Fraud or Truth-In-Lending was filed August 12, 2010 with several attorneys representing hundreds of clients in the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida. Many motions with exhibits and depositions.

This story began October 5, 2009

Previous stories:

Operation Lease Fleece


This story came from an FBI Press Release.

The latest has former Capital Werks employee Houshang Jangi sentenced on December 14, 2011 "Pay special assessment $100, all fines waived. Committed on the Single-Count Information to Bureau of Prisons for 15 months. Supervised release for three years under the terms and conditions of US Probation Office and General Order 05-02. Bond is exonerated upon surrender. It is further ordered that the defendant surrender himself to the institution designated by the Bureau of Prisons on or before 12:00 noon on February 13, 2012. Defendant advised of his right to appeal. (dg) "

"Information" was filed as to Houshang Jangi January 6, 2010." He was not one of the originally 23 arrested. There were over 30 eventually charged, and allegedly the case is considered “active."

This story began November 9, 2007

Previous Stories:

This started from Bernie Boettigheimer, CLP, who was looking for information regarding Charles K. Schwartz from a complaint he was slow in payments.

Charles K. Schwartz, 58, Allied Health Care Service Founder and President Charles K. Schwartz sentenced 16 years and three months in prison, plus three years of supervised release, and ordered Schwartz to pay $80 million in restitution for fraud, as wells to forfeit $75 million ( he filed bankruptcy before pleading guilty). He is now at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.

Bruce Donner, owner of Donner Medical Marketing, Inc. pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud before U.S. District Judge Susan D. Wigenton in Newark federal court. Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 11, 2012.

This story began February 19, 2010.


John Kenny Receivables Management

• End of Lease Negotiations & Enforcement
• Fraud Investigation
• Credit Investigations
• Asset Searches
• Skip-tracing
• Third-party Commercial Collections

The Solution to Your Credit & Accounts Receivable Needs 
John Kenny
315-866-1167 |

(Leasing News provides this ad as a trade for investigations
and background information provided by John Kenny)



Leasing 102
by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP

Tax indemnity in “true leases”

In “true leasing” the Lessor usually reduces the Lessee’s payment amount by the value of the accelerated depreciation (MACRS) or the value of the current stimulus depreciation. However, you must follow the guidelines for a “true lease” or these tax advantages will be disallowed. That means taken away!

How do you protect yourself if your yield is reduced accordingly? It is called tax indemnity:

This Agreement is entered into on the basis that Lessor shall be the owner of the Equipment for federal and state income tax purposes and entitled to such deductions, credits, and other benefits as are provided an owner of personal property, including but not limited to the maximum Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System deductions ("depreciation") for the MACRS Property Class life under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 ("Code"); and interest paid or accrued with respect to any loan made to or assumed by Lessor or its assigns to finance the purchase of the Equipment (collectively referred to herein as the "Tax Benefits").

If, with respect to any item of Equipment, Lessor or its assigns shall not have or shall lose the right to claim all or any portion of the Tax Benefits or if all or any portion of the Tax Benefits shall be disallowed or recaptured (hereinafter referred to as "Tax Benefit Loss") due to the acts or omission of Lessee, then the following provisions shall be applicable:

a. Payment by Lessee: Subject to the exceptions set forth below, Lessee shall, within thirty (30) days after written notice from Lessor that a Tax Benefit Loss has occurred, pay to Lessor at Lessor's option, either a lump-sum payment or an increase to the remaining monthly payments due under the Equipment Schedule in an amount which, after taking into account the effects of interest, penalties, and additional taxes payable by Lessor as a result of the Tax Benefit Loss and the receipt of payment hereunder, will cause Lessor's net effective after-tax return over the term of the Equipment Schedule to equal the net effective after-tax return which would have been available if Lessor had been entitled to the utilization of all Tax Benefits.

b. Date of Loss: For purposes hereof a Tax Benefit Loss shall occur upon the earliest of (i) the payment by Lessor to the Internal Revenue Service or the applicable state revenue office of the tax increase resulting from such Tax Benefit Loss, or (ii) the adjustment of the tax return of Lessor to reflect such Tax Benefit Loss.

c. Limitation on Loss: Notwithstanding the foregoing, Lessor shall not be entitled to a payment hereunder on account of any Tax Benefit Loss directly attributable to any other following: (i) any act on the part of Lessor which causes a Tax Benefit Loss; (ii) the failure of Lessor to have sufficient taxable income or tax liability to utilize such Tax Benefits; or, (iii) the happening of any other event with respect to Lessor (such as disqualifying change in Lessor's business or characterization of Lessor as a personal holding company) which causes a Tax Benefit Loss.

d. Owner: This Section is expressly made for the benefit of, and shall be enforceable by Lessor, any person, firm corporation, or other entity to which Lessor transfers title to all or a portion of the Equipment and their successors and assigns (collectively, the "Owner"). For the purpose hereof, the term "Owner" shall include an affiliated group (within the meaning of the Code) of which a person or entity is a member for any year in which a consolidated income tax return is filed for such affiliated group. Lessee shall indemnify and hold harmless any such Owner from any Tax Benefit Loss on the same terms and to the same extent as it would have indemnified Lessor and held Lessor harmless as if said Owner were the Lessor hereunder. All of Lessor's rights and privileges arising from the indemnities contained herein shall survive the expiration or other termination of this Agreement.

As you can see it is a lot of language that must be inserted into your lease agreement if you plan to offer true leasing. In addition to the MACRS depreciation or any allowed depreciation benefits you have the additional risk of the tax rate (34%-35%) or any state tax rate being changed during the term of the lease so you need a corporate tax “rate” indemnity.

The corporate tax rate prior to 1981 was 46% and with the concern over the current deficit it would not be inconceivable to see the tax rate being changed.

In “true leasing”--- in the past the value of the tax benefits played a big part in commercial equipment leasing because if the lessee can expense the rents instead of taking depreciation and interest then they can control both the speed of the deduction and the term. For instance the term of depreciation, in normal times, for data processing equipment is five years. A lot of lessee’s prefer to expense it over three years and put the depreciation “burden” on the Lessor. In this case the rent payment will go up slightly because the revenue stream (lease payments) will be higher than the allowable depreciation, causing the tax burden on the Lessor to be higher. However, the lessee gets a higher tax deduction and at 35% the savings are better than the increase in the payment.

There is a lot to learn about true leasing and the shift back to this type of leasing will put a lot of pressure on lessor’s to get up to speed quickly on the rules and requirements.

Mr. Terry Winders, CLP, has been a teacher, consultant, expert witness for the leasing industry for thirty-five years and can be reached at or 502-649-0448

He invites your questions and queries.

Previous #102 Columns:


(This ad is a “trade” for the writing of this column. Opinions
contained in the column are those of Mr. Terry Winders, CLP)


Top Stories December 20--22

Here are the top ten sorties opened by readers:

(1) Jules & Associates Attorney "Cease & Desist Demand"
by Christopher Menkin, Editor/Publisher

(2) Crit DeMent Surprise Happy Holiday Greetings

(3) U.S. Bank buys $700 million credit portfolio from BofA

(4) Leasing 102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLP
Not the End of the Leasing World”
--Compensation in 2012

(5) Equipment Lessor Saved by Exculpatory Language
by Tom McCurrin

(6) New Hires--Promotions

(7) Tom Brady mansion almost done

(8) At Last! Positive News Equipment Leasing & Finance 2012
Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation Forecast

(9) Paying Down Your 30 year Mortgage vs. Refi News Center_link_1

(10) Uh-Oh! More on Dwolla "Instant Transfer"



Special Year’s Best Edition
By Fernando F. Croce

Christmas has seen some excellent new films being released, and several were reviewed earlier. They may make the list of the Best of 2011. Here is a list, in alphabetical order, of some of the greatest movies released before this period in 2011. Several are already “On Demand” or down loadable and available also from Netflix.

Tree of Life

Cave of Forgotten Dreams: A tireless cinematic explorer, legendary German director Werner Herzog takes viewers on another journey with this entrancing documentary. Gaining exclusive access into the Chauvet caves in the south of France, Herzog takes his cameras into rocky formations and wall drawings dating back to 30,000 years ago. The result is an eye-filling tour of humanity’s earliest remains, with a 3-D presentation that tests the format’s visual possibilities rather than just relying on its spectacle.

Certified Copy: Shooting his first film outside his native Iran, Abbas Kiarostami comes up with a haunting and utterly unique date movie. The story takes place between an English novelist (William Shimell) and a French antique shop owner (Juliette Binoche) who meet in Tuscany. Spending an afternoon together, the two strangers share stories as their personal backgrounds gradually come to the fore. Half stylish jigsaw and half perceptive romantic comedy, this is a must for film lovers.

Hugo: Though Martin Scorsese would seem like an unlikely choice to direct a children's picture, this lovely fantasy is not only one of the year's most enchanting films, but also Scorsese’s most affecting film in years. Set in 1930s Paris and following the adventures of a 12-year-old orphan as he seeks clues about his family and learns about the value of cinema from one of its forgotten pioneers, this is a heartfelt valentine to movies that enchants from beginning to end.

J. Edgar: Clint Eastwood continues to surprise from behind the camera with this engrossing biopic on controversial political figure J. Edgar Hoover, strongly played by Leonardo DiCaprio. Skillfully hop scotching from the 1920s to the 1960s, the movie follows Hoover as he almost single-handedly founds the CIA by tenaciously going after those he felt were a threat to the nation and introducing scientific methods such as fingerprints into police investigations. An absorbing combination of taut drama and history lesson.

Meek’s Cutoff: Set in 1845, this remarkable Western follows a group of settlers who end up separated from their caravan and lost in the Oregon desert. As they become more restless after coming upon an enigmatic native, can they find the way back home, or will their journey continue going in circles? Working with an exceptional cast that Michelle Williams, Reichardt envisions an Old West that’s both naturalistic and stylized, and utterly unforgettable.

Poetry: Veteran Korean actress Yun Jeong-hie delivers an astounding performance as an elderly widow who works as a maid and tries to hang on to her private space as cultural changes take place around her. To pass the time she enrolls in a writing class, and the fulfillment she gets from poems gives her life a newfound meaning. Complications arise, however, resulting in a sometimes painful but ultimately powerful journey from director Lee Chang-dong.

Road to Nowhere: After an almost twenty-year long absence, cult director Monte Hellman returns to the big screen with a tantalizing, enigmatic thriller. Set behind the scenes of a movie production, it weaves together a series of plot strands that evocatively mingle real world and the cinematic world, reality and fantasy. Though it may sound confusing, yet Hellman keeps things light touch by stressing the story's deadpan humor and melancholy poetry.

Take Shelter: Michael Shannon gives an unsettling performance as a small-town husband and father whose recurring nightmares about a deadly approaching storm begin to crumble the security he feels with his wife (Jessica Chastain) and small daughter. Is it all only in his head, or is there a real threat coming their way? Working expertly with mood and atmosphere, writer-director Jeff Nichols offers a one-of-a-kind blend of thriller, drama and everyday anxiety

The Tree of Life: The brilliant and legendarily reclusive director Terrence Malick offers a visually astounding, profoundly moving story of spiritual turmoil and redemption with perhaps his most personal work yet. Alternating with revolutionary freedom between visions of cosmic creation, alienation in a modern-day city and childhood freedom in a small Texas neighborhood in the 1950s (featuring Brad Pitt in a towering performance), it makes for challenging but unforgettable, soul-stirring viewing.

Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives: The title is just the first unique thing about this marvelous Thai fantasy. The uncle of the title is an aging farmer who, while on his deathbed, receives a visit from his ghostly wife and son, who have come to prepare him for the next world. The plot suggests a horror movie, but director Apichatpong Weerasethakul instead offers a warm and funny look at the fluidity of spirituality and fate that’s both sophisticated and immediately accessible.


Lake Charles, Lousiana -- Adopt-a-Dog


Breed: Catahoula Leopard Dog/Australian Shepherd Mix
Color: Merle
Age: Adult
Size: Large 61-100 lbs (28-45 kg)
Sex: Male

"I am already neutered, housetrained, up to date with shots, good with kids, good with dogs, and good with cats.

Harlee's Story...


"Hi everyone! My name is Harlee! I am approximately 6 years young and I am a Catahoula/Aussie mix. I am a good sized boy, weighing around 75lbs, but I am very gentle and kind. My foster Mom always tells me what a handsome boy I am.

"I am very calm and easy going guy. I am housetrained, crate trained, know how to sit and I am not at all destructive. I get along really well with other dogs and I don't mind the kitties in my foster home either. I LOVE children more than anything! All ages and sizes! The more kids around me, the happier I am! I really love teenagers, they really seem to enjoy spending time with me.

"I am already neutered, have had all my vaccines and tested negative for heartworms. I have been kept on monthly preventatives for heartworms, fleas and ticks to keep me healthy. I promise I would make you a wonderful companion for years to come, please don't make me wait much longer for the family I want so badly.

"Adopt me today! My adoption fee is $50.00 to cover the cost of my veterinary care. My adoption fee has been lowered thanks to a kind donation in hopes of me finding my forever home even sooner. Please visit the All Creatures Rescue website to fill out an adoption application."

Contact This Rescue Group...
Rescue Group: All Creatures Rescue
Pet ID #: 20072
Contact: Kathleen Roush
Let 'em know you saw "Harlee" on!
Address: Lake Charles, LA

Adopt-a-Pet by Leasing Co. State/City

Adopt a Pet




Classified ads—Credit

Retrieve/verify a corporation and personal tax information (1040, 1120, 1065) electronically directly from the source. Results delivered in 24-48 hours. 678-393-1988 Scott or

Leasing Industry Outsourcing Classified ads:



SparkPeople--Live Healthier and Longer

6.6% of elderly people in US major depression




Sports Briefs----

Heat Hand Celtics Second Loss

San Francisco 49ers release wide receiver Braylon Edwards



Football Poems

Silver Lining To The Clouds Of Doubt

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you're trudging seems all up hill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest if you must, but don't you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don't give up though the pace seems slow-
You might succeed with one last blow.

Often the goal is nearer than
It seems to be to a faltering man.
Often the struggler has given up,
When he might have captured the victor's cup.
And he learned too late, when night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out.
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This Day in History

      1722--Birthday of Elizabeth Lucas Pinckney . Left to manage her father's three plantations in the Carolinas when he was called back to Antigua as military lieutenant general. Not only did she experiment with various crops trying to produce one that would increase the plantations' income - plantations being agricultural businesses, not family farms - she developed a method whereby the touchy indigo plant could be raised in the harsher Carolina climate. The English government was enthusiastic and subsidized its growing as the U.S. government would later subsidize tobacco. Export reached in excess of one million pounds and was a major income source for the entire region. After her marriage, she developed a method for growing silkworms in the Charleston area and manufacturing silk. As a widow she would return to her family's plantations and manage them - successfully, as usual. Two of her sons were prominent in the new United States politics. Her first shipment of 17 pounds of indigo dye caused a furor in London as merchants found it equal to the dye from the French colonies. The English Parliament gave the South Carolina growers a subsidy. France made it a major crime to export indigo seeds but it was too late. Then ELP did the most unusual thing ... and perhaps the most feminist thing: she distributed the seeds from her crop to any colonist planter who wanted them instead of keeping the magic seeds to herself for her other gain. Within five years, the 17 pounds of dye had increased to 40,000 pounds. This output increased in time and became a major source of income for the fledgling United States that desperately needed cash. President George Washington served as one of the pallbearers at her funeral.
    1732 -- The Pennsylvania Gazette carried the first known advertisement for the first issue of Poor Richard's Almanack by Richard Saunders (Benjamin Franklin) for the year 1733. The advertisement promised "many pleasant and witty verses, jests and sayings . . . new fashions, games for kisses . . . men and melons . . . breakfast in bed, &c." America 's most famous almanac, Poor Richard's was published through the year 1758 and has been imitated many times since. From The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin: "In 1732 I first publish'd my Almanack, under the name of Richard Saunders; it was continu'd by me about twenty-five years, commonly call'd Poor Richard's Almanack. I endeavor'd to make it both entertaining and useful, and it accordingly came to be in such demand, that I reap'd considerable profit from it, vending annually near ten thousand. And observing that it was generally read, scarce any neighborhood in the province being without it, I consider'd it as a proper vehicle for conveying instruction among the common people, who bought scarcely any other books; I therefore filled all the little spaces that occurr'd between the remarkable days in the calendar with proverbial sentences, chiefly such as inculcated industry and frugality, as the means of procuring wealth, and thereby securing virtue; it being more difficult for a man in want, to act always honestly, as, to use here one of those proverbs, it is hard for an empty sack to stand upright."
    1793 - Thomas Paine is arrested in France for treason. Though the charges against him were never detailed, he had been tried in absentia on December 26 and convicted. Before moving to France, Paine was an instrumental figure in the American Revolution as the author of Common Sense, writings used by George Washington to inspire the American troops. Paine moved to Paris to become involved with the French Revolution, but the chaotic political climate turned against him, and he was arrested and jailed for crimes against the country. While in prison, he continued to work on The Age of Reason and began an affair with actress Muriel Alette, who had been sentenced to death for being the mistress of a nobleman. Paine's imprisonment in France caused a general uproar in America and future President James Monroe used all of his diplomatic connections to get Paine released in November 1794. Ironically, it wasn't long before Paine came to be despised in the United States, as well. After The Age of Reason was published, he was called an anti-Christ, and his reputation was ruined. Thomas Paine died a poor man in 1809 in New York.
    1832- The first vice-president of the United States to resign was the famous John C. Calhoun, who had served as vice-president of the US under two presidents (John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson ) Mar 4-1825-December 28,1832). Finding himself in growing disagreement with President Jackson, he resigned the office of vice president to fill the vacancy in the Senate caused by the resignation of Robert Young Hayne, senator from South Carolina . He spent most of his subsequent political life as a US Senator from South Carolina , a strong states right and pro-slavery, where he felt he was more effective than being a vice-president under a man he “despised.” advocate.
    1832- In Missouri , St. Louis Academy (founded in 1818) was chartered as St. Louis University . It was the first Catholic university established in the U.S. west of the Allegheny Mountains .
    1837- John A. Pitts and Hiram Abial Pitts of Winthrop, ME, received a patent for a “ machine for threshing or cleaning grain” employing steam. the machine separated grain from the straw and chaff.
    1839 - The third storm in two weeks hit the northeastern U.S. It brought two more feet of snow to Hartford, CT, and Worcester, MA. Whole gales swept the coast causing many wrecks
    1846- Iowa becomes 29 th state. The 29th state's name is derived from an American Indian word meaning ‘the beautiful land'. It is widely thought that Iowa 's nickname, the Hawkeye State , is in honor of Black Hawk, the famous Indian chief who led the Sauk and Fox tribes against the Iowa area settlers in the Black Hawk War of 1832. Iowa City was the first capital of Iowa . 11 years later, Des Moines , the state's largest city, became the permanent capital. The Iowa state bird is the eastern goldfinch, the state flower, the wild rose, and the state motto: “Our liberties we prize and our rights we will maintain.”
    1848- Gaslight was turned on in the White House. James Knox Polk was the president.
    1851- The Young Men's Christian Association was organized in the United States in Boston , MA . It was patented after a similar organization started in London on June 6, 1844. The first gymnasium was opened in New York City in 1869, and in the same year, the first separate boys' department was opened in Salem , MA . The first YMCA branch for African-American members was organized in Washington , DC , in 1853 by Anthony Bowen and Jerome Johnson, who served respectively as president and secretary.
    1856-(Thomas) Woodrow Wilson, 28 th president of the US was born at Staunton , Virginia . Twice elected president (1912 and 1916,) it was Wilson who said, “The world must be made safe for democracy, “as he asked the Congress to declare war on Germany , April 2, 1917. His first wife, Ellen, died August 6, 1914, and married Edith Bolling Galt, December 18, 1915. He suffered a paralytic stroke, September 16, 1919, never regaining his health. There were many speculations about who (possibly Mrs. Wilson?) was running the government during his illness. His second term of office ended March 3, 1921, and he died at Washington , DC , Feb. 3, 1924. Wilson was the last president to be born in Virginia , the state where the most presidents of the US were from: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, Zachary Taylor and Woodrow Wilson.
    1867- David Groesbeck and Company, a member of the New York Stock Exchange, became the first stock brokerage to use a telegraph ticker. It was installed by the Gold and Stock Telegraph Company, New York City , on a lease of $6 a week from Daniel Drew, who also provided maintenance. It is considered the first “maintenance lease” in America . ( no option to purchase).
    1869-Labor Day was inaugurated by the Knights of Labor, a workers' organization formed in Philadelphia , PA. the first states to declare Labor Day a state holiday were Oregon , In February 1887; Colorado , in March 1887; and New York , in May 1887. The annual nationwide observance of Labor Day was sponsored by the American Federation of Labor, which resolved in convention at Chicago, IL, On October 7, 1884, “ that the first Monday in September be set aside as a laborer's national holiday.” On June 28, 1894, Congress designed the first Monday in September a legal holiday for federal employees and for the District of Columbia . The first Labor Day parade was held in New York City on September 5, 1882, under the auspices of the Central Labor Union. It featured musical bans and 10,000marchers who carried placards reading “ Less Work and More Pay,” “Less Hours, More Pay.” “Labor Pays All Taxes, “ “Labor creates All Wealth,” “To the Workers Should Belong the Wealth,” and “The Laborer Must Receive and Enjoy the Full Fruit of his Labor.”
    1881- Jess Willard, Boxer born at Pottawatomie County , KS . The towering Willard, 6' 6 ¼” tall, took the heavyweight title from Jack Johnson in a fight oat Havana , Cuba on April 5, 1915. He defended his title only once in four years and then lost it to Jack Dempsey on July 4, 19191. Died at Los Angeles , CA. December 15, 1968.
    1891- Thomas Alva Edison of Menlo Park , New Jersey , received a patent for a “means of transmitting signals electrically.” In the patent, he stated that “signaling between distant points can be carried on by induction without the use of wires connecting such distant points.” Marconi in 1894 experimented with hertzian waves to communicate wireless telegraph and Nathan Stubblefield, claimed he invented it earlier
    1897 - The temperature at Dayville , OR , hit 81 degrees to establish a state record for December
    1903—Pianist/composer Earl “Fatha” Hines Birthday
    1903-Birthday of , Fanny "Bobbie" Rosenfeld - celebrated Canadian track and field athlete, named Canada 's woman athlete of the half-century. In the 1928 Olympics, she won a silver and gold. She excelled in almost every sport from hockey to softball and did it on her own since there were no coaches for women at the time. She became a sports columnist.
    1905-- legendary jazz pianist Earl (Fatha) Hines was born in Pittsburgh. Hines, whose complex rhythms influenced musicians for five decades, began his career in the 1920's. Jazz took a revolutionary turn in that decade because of the recordings he made, both as a solo artist and with Louis Armstrong's Hot Five combo. In the 1930's and '40s, Hines led his own big band, and among those he helped to stardom were Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughan, Charlie Parker and Billy Eckstine. A forgotten figure in the 1950's, he reappeared in the following decade for concerts and recordings, even turning up on rock guitarist Ry Cooder's album "Paradise and Lunch." Earl Hines died of a heart attack at his home in Oakland, California, on April 22nd, 1983.
    1908- Otto Zachow and William Besserdick of Clintonville , WI obtained a patent for a four wheel brake for cars, calling it a “power applying mechanism”, quickly adopted by the car industry who were employing a hand brake against one wheel..
    1912- guitarist Billy Markel born Baltimore , MD
    1921--Singer/Band Leader/Disc Jockey/Musician/Politician Johnny Otis was born in Vallejo , California . I listed to him with "Willie and the Hand Jive" as a disc jockey as I grew up in West Los Angeles , California , saw many of his small and large bank performances, the last at the San Jose Fairmont Hotel. He is a painter/sculptor, and still plays music and appears as on radio every Saturday.
    1924 - Iowa experienced it coldest December morning of record. Morning lows averaged 25 degrees below zero for the 104 weather stations across the state
    1924-- rhythm-and-blues bandleader and singer Johnny Otis was born in Vallejo, California. His first big hit was "Willie and the Hand Jive" in 1958, but he had begun recording in the late 1940's. Otis was also responsible for discovering such artists as Little Esther Phillips, Jackie Wilson, Little Willie John and Hank Ballard. He had a hit radio show in Los Angeles in the late 1950's and 1960's, and kept his band going, moving to Sebastopol, California (Santa Rosa area) where he paints to this day. 
    1932---Birthday of actress Nichelle Nichols, first black woman regularly featured on a weekly TV show, activist of great force in NASA's first recruitment drive of minorities and women, but better known to Trekkies as Uhura of the Star Trek series, Whoopi Goldberg in the eulogy of Star Trek originator Gene Roddenberry's funeral with whom Nichols had been lovers said that 25 years earlier she was a kid from the projects who saw Uhura as "The only vision of black people in the future," autobiography Beyond Uhura: Star Trek and Other Memories (1995).
B. 12-28-1934, Maggie Smith, British screen 
    1938- Ziggy Elman cuts “Fralich in Swing.”
    1938---Birthday of Charles Neville (The Neville Brothers) 
    1940- Herb Jefferies cuts “Flamingo” with Duke Ellington Band, Chicago
    1944- Leonard Bernstein scores his first big hit when his musical On the Town, featuring the song "New York, New York," opens on Broadway. 
    1945- The US Congress officially recognized the Pledge of Allegiance and urged its frequent recitation in America 's schools. The pledge was composed in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister. At the time, Bellamy, was chairman of a committee of state school superintendents of education, and several public schools adopted his pledge that year as part of the Columbus Day quadricentennial celebration that year. In 1955, the Knights of Columbus persuaded Congress to add the words “under God” to the pledge.
    1949- 1949--Top Hits
I Can Dream, Can't I? - The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra (vocal: Jack Leonard)
A Dreamer's Holiday - Perry Como
Dear Hearts and Gentle People - Bing Crosby
Mule Train - Tennessee Ernie Ford
    1952- The Sonotone Corporation, Elmsford , NY , offered for sale a hearing aid using transistors. It weighed 3.5 ounces and was three inches long.
    1954-Denzel Washington actor ("St. Elsewhere," Glory, Malcolm X), born Mount Vernon , NY .
    1955 - Anchorage , AK , was buried under 17.7 inches of snow in 24 hours, a record for that location.     1958 - Albuquerque , NM , received 14.2 inches of snow to establish a 24 hour record.
    1957--Top Hits
Jailhouse Rock - Elvis Presley
At the Hop - Danny & the Juniors
Great Balls of Fire - Jerry Lee Lewis
My Special Angel - Bobby Helms
    1957-- "At the Hop" by Danny and the Juniors reached the top of the U-S charts. The song by the Philadelphia street-corner group was originally called "Do the Bop," but the title and lyrics were changed at the suggestion of Dick Clark. 
    1958-- Chipmunks (Alvin, Simon & Theodore with David Seville) hit #1
    1959-- Frankie Avalon's "Why" hits #1 
    1961-The first airline to carry 100 million passengers was American Airlines, New York City, which selected pioneering aviator Lieutenant General James Harold Doolittle, chairman of the board of Space Technology Laboratories, Los Angeles, as the national symbol of the 100,000,000 th passenger and presented him with a crystal bowl this day.
    1963-The single "Dominique" and its companion LP "The Singing Nun" top the Billboard singles chart and album chart respectively. So far, the 45 has sold over 700,000 copies and the LP, 670,000.
    1963-A quartet from Minneapolis, Minnesota who called themselves The Trashmen saw their first release, "Surfin' Bird", enter the Billboard Hot 100 where it would reach #4 during the first week of February, next year. The song is a combination of two R&B hits by The Rivingtons: "Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow" and "The Bird's the Word".
    1963--- The magazine The New Yorker publishes an interview with Beatles manager Brian Epstein in their "Talk of the Town" column about the band's upcoming Ed Sullivan gig -- the first major press the group has received in the US.
    1964--- Trumpeter Hugh Masekela is a featured guest on CBS-TV's game show To Tell the Truth.
    1965--Top Hits
Over and Over - The Dave Clark Five
I Got You (I Feel Good) - James Brown
The Sounds of Silence - Simon & Garfunkel
Buckaroo - Buck Owens & The Buckaroos
    1967-- Muriel Siebert pays $445,000 plus $7515 initiation fee to become the first woman to own a seat on the New York Stock Exchange.
    1968 - The (double) album named "The Beatles" (called by most, "The White Album") was #1 in the U.S. It was the Beatles' first album on their own Apple label and was #1 for nine weeks. The tracks: "Back in the U.S.S.R.", "Dear Prudence", "Glass Onion", "Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da", "Wild Honey Pie", "The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill", "While My Guitar Gently Weeps", "Happiness is a Warm Gun", "Martha My Dear", "I'm So Tired", "Blackbird", "Piggies", "Rocky Raccoon", "Don't Pass Me By", "Why Don't We Do It in the Road", "I Will", "Julia", "Birthday", "Yer Blues", "Mother Nature's Son", "Everybody's Got Something to Hide Except for Me and My Monkey", "Sexy Sadie", "Helter Skelter", "Long, Long, Long", "Revolution I", "Honey Pie", "Savoy Truffle", "Cry Baby Cry", "Revolution 9", and "Good Night".
    1968-The Doors' "Touch Me" is released. With a guitar intro strongly influenced by The Four Seasons' "C'mon Marianne", the song would reach #3 on the Billboard Hot 100, #1 in Canada, #10 in Australia.
    1968- The first major rock concert on the East Coast, the Miami Pop Festival, takes place, a three-day affair featuring Chuck Berry, Marvin Gaye, The Turtles, Joni Mitchell, Procol Harum, Steppenwolf, Canned Heat, Iron Butterfly, The McCoys, Fleetwood Mac, The Box Tops, Three Dog Night, Pacific Gas and Electric, and The Grateful Dead.
    1973--Top Hits
The Most Beautiful Girl - Charlie Rich
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road - Elton John
Time in a Bottle - Jim Croce
If We Make It Through December - Merle Haggard
    1974-- Helen Reddy's "Angie Baby" hits #1
    1978- Ohio State University football coach Woody Hayes punched a player from Clemson University during Clemson's 19-15 victory in the Gator Bowl. Hayes was upset that the Buckeyes were losing, but OSU official were upset, too. They fired Hayes for the incident.
    1978--- 30th hat trick in Islander history (Mike Bossy
    1981-The first child born in the United States through in vitro fertilization was Elizabeth Jordan Carr, born at Norfolk Hospital , Norfolk , VA.
    1981--Top Hits
Physical - Olivia Newton-John
Waiting for a Girl like You - Foreigner
Let's Groove - Earth, Wind & Fire
Love in the First Degree – Alabama
   1981-Warner Brothers Records, which includes Elektra and Asylum, follows the lead of RCA and raises its price for 45 rpm singles to $1.99.
    1984---Singer Michael Jackson won a record eight Grammy Awards at the presentation ceremony in Los Angeles. But he lost the best song award to "Every Breath You Take," written by Sting for the Police. Jackson's Pepsi commercial - the one in which he was injured when his hair caught fire - premiered that day on MTV.
    1987 - A winter storm produced heavy snow in the Upper Mississippi Valley and the Upper Great Lakes Region. Up to twenty inches of snow buried southern Minnesota , and 20 to 40 mph northwesterly winds produced snow drifts six feet high, and reduced visibilities to near zero at times in blowing snow. There were a thousand traffic accidents in Michigan during the storm, resulting in thirty-five injuries.
    1989--Top Hits
Another Day in Paradise - Phil Collins
Don't Know Much - Linda Ronstadt (featuring Aaron Neville)
Rhythm Nation - Janet Jackson
A Woman in Love - Ronnie Milsap
    1996 - Canadian singer Alanis Morissette won four major Grammy Awards, including album of the year and rock album of the year for "Jagged Little Pill." She also picked up trophies for best rock song and best female rock vocal performance, both for her single "You Oughta Know." Canadians picked up a total of 11 Grammys, including two by Joni Mitchell for her album "Turbulent Indigo." Faith Hill won the best country album Grammy for "The Woman in Me."
    2003 - A severe snow storm hit northern California and southern Oregon. As much as 2 feet of snow fell along Interstate 5 closing a 150-mile stretch of the interstate, stranding hundreds of travelers. Winds from the storm caused power outages to more than 200,000 customers in California and Oregon. One man died of a heart attack after helping other drivers.
     2004 - Los Angeles (downtown) broke a daily rainfall record for the month of December (5.55 inches). This was the third wettest calendar day in Los Angeles since records began in 1877.




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