"While this is obviously very unfortunate, the financial reality of the situation may leave us no choice," O'Hagan wrote.
Pack It On
Speaking of playing hardball, American Airlines came under fire this week for its policy of charging Iraq-war bound soldiers for their extra bags. The airline says it has an agreement with the military to waive extra bag fees and that soldiers are reimbursed for the extra charges. But that isn't sitting well with some soldiers or veterans groups who note that soldiers are still forced to fork over their cash as they make ready for a difficult trip to a war zone. It also puts the onus on soldiers to seek reimbursement from the military as they busy themselves with other things in Iraq, like not getting killed by an IED. Upfront isn't sure why American Airlines, if it's willing to waive the fee for the military, doesn't just give soldiers a free pass.
Is there an epidemic of soldier impersonators out there trying to get discounts on movie tickets and all-you-can-eat buffets? We doubt it, and you can't help but think this akin to when electronics manufacturers try to lure you in with "mail in rebates," knowing full well that a certain percentage of folks will forget to mail it in, or send it in late, allowing them, the manufacturers, to pocket the difference.
Full of truthiness.Edwards' Love Child
American Airlines isn't the only one scrambling for explanations this week. Long simmering allegations of infidelity caught up with one-time presidential hopeful John Edwards this week. The Carolina Senator who was on the short list of potential running mates for Barack Obama publicly admitted this week that he had an affair with a woman who shot several web videos for his primary campaign last year. The woman, Rielle Hunter, approached Edwards in a bar and although she had almost no video production experience managed to land a spot on his campaign team. His political action committee paid her $114,00 to produce the spots that appeared on his campaign website. The National Enquirer - yeah, that one - began reporting on the allegations last year, but the story was largely ignored by the mainstream media, probably because Edwards who had vehemently denied the charges dropped out of the race relatively early compared to Obama and Hillary Clinton. When asked why he had lied about the relationship, Edwards said that the details of the initial story, which surfaced back in October were "95 percent wrong." So he was only lying about five percent. In other words, when he completely lied he was being "mostly truthful." In Bush speak, there was a lot of "truthiness" to what he said. This is the kind of shit that would make Bill Clinton blush.
However, the story became harder to ignore when Hunter gave birth recently to a baby with an unidentified father. Edwards says he is not the child's father and has offered to take a paternity test, but was recently spotted at Hunter's hotel room to meet with her after the birth. Hunter meanwhile refuses to push a paternity test on the first term senator. Can you say quid pro quo?
Pundits have already started piling on, suggesting that paternity will be clear once we can see the child's hair, or at least the bill for the kid's first haircut.