Where to Look For the Best Black Friday Deals

We’re just several days before Black Friday’s amazing deals. This is the high time to get ready to take advantage of the best Black Friday deals and knowing where to look for them is what could make the day a complete success…or a frustrating failure.

In 2012, Black Friday starts early. Based on the schedules retailers announced, you’re going to have to make a run for it. Most likely still stuffed from all that Thanksgiving Day dinner you’ll be waiting in line for Target and Walmart to open doors earlier for Black Friday. So, it’s best you know what deals to look for to make the most of the holiday time.

First of all you need to know the opening hours for Black Friday. It’s earlier this year, so be sure you’re planning your discount shopping accordingly. Kmart, Sears, Target, Old Navy, Toys ‘R’ Us and Walmart will open stores on Thanksgiving Day according to a chart on the Deal News website.

Be sure you know beforehand what kind of deals Black Friday has to offer. Expert Black Friday websites warn that some deals are not as great as they look. For instance TVs and cameras have better prices in February, while buying toys on Black Friday won’t save you as much money as Christmas discount deals will.

If you’re planning a trip to the Toys ‘R’ Us stores on Black Friday, the retailer is giving away $30 goody bags with products by Disney, Crayola and Lego. But only the first 200 people in line will be that lucky. Target opens at 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day and has buster specials set for 4 a.m.

When it comes to electronics on Black Friday, the general advice is to check the actual discounts thoroughly, since you might find a better price at a different retailer. For instance, Walmart is selling a refurb Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7” 8GB Android tablet for $150 and it also throws in free shipping. Deal News writes it’s the “lowest total price we’ve seen for this tablet. (It’s also $49 under the lowest total price we could find for a new one).

Sandy Brings Stack Of WWII Love Letters On the NJ Beach

It seems silver linings are not just for clouds, but for hurricanes also. This is what Kathleen Mullen, a resident of Atlantic Highlands, N.J., must have said to herself when she discovered a stack of WWII love letters on the New Jersey Beach.

Superstorm Sandy has made it almost impossible for East Coast residents to enjoy their everyday lives. Kathleen Mullen decided to take a walk on the beach on Friday morning to clear her mind of the problems that have been troubling her ever since the hurricane hit her home. She suddenly noticed a stack of old love letters tied with a pink ribbon amidst the ruins that Sandy left behind.

Mullen told reporters at ABC that she assumed the papers were love letters because they were tied with a pink ribbon. Her suppositions turned out to be true when she took a closer look at them. It appears the letters have been written during WWII, more precisely between 1942 and 1947. Dorothy Fallon of Rumson, N.J., and Lynn Farnham of Vermont were the two lovers who signed the letters.

Driven by a strong feeling of curiosity and by a powerful desire to discover the owners of the WWII love letters, Mullen took to the Internet to solve the mystery. She first wrote a post about the stack of letters on Facebook, then on Craigslist and eventually resorted to the website Findagrave. According to the information provided by the website, Lynn Farnham died in 1992 and was buried in New Jersey, but her niece, Shelly Farnham-Hilber, was still alive and lived in Virginia.

Farnham-Hilber was equally thrilled about the discovery that Mullen had made. She told the press that the stack of WWII love letters was like a “genealogical gold mine”. She further revealed that Lynn Farnham, her uncle, served in WWII as a soldier at Pearl Harbor. The two lovers reunited after the war and had two children.

Walmart Employees Plan Walkout On Black Friday

While they are making huge efforts to attract customers with their early Black Friday deals, Walmart didn’t do much to please their employees. The latter plan to hold a walkout on Black Friday to give voice to their discontents, Fox News relates.

Walmart has always been one of the most appreciated retailers in the United States. Not according to the people who work there, however. Employees decided to boycott this year’s Black Friday by organizing a protest against the small wages and poor working conditions they are offered.

Rosetta Brown, one of the protest organizers, was very excited that the number of protesters has increased this year. She believes their initiative is supported by everyone, including those who will not be able to join the protest on Black Friday.

Walmart spokesperson, Kory Lundberg claims that the protests are clear examples of unfair competition. She put forward the hypothesis according to which the protests represent a publicity campaign aimed at damaging Walmart’s reputation. Customers and associates will no longer take into consideration Walmart’s deals if the protests continue, the spokesperson explained. She further blamed the United Food and Commercial Workers Union for the organization of the protests.

Numerous Walmart stores in Chicago and 43 other states will be assaulted by protesters on Thanksgiving Day. The message they are all trying to convey: workers need better pay and benefits. Black Friday was chosen as the perfect day for the Walmart walkout because employees are constrained to work 24 hours during this time of the year without any benefits.

While some employees are unsatisfied with the working conditions that the company offers, others don’t seem to have a problem with Walmart’s administration. Optimistic workers were, in fact, glad to work during Thanksgiving Day because it will be easier for them to deal with the large masses of customers. In spite of all the protests and debates, many shoppers plan to visit Walmart on Thanksgiving Day because they can sleep in on Friday.

Petraeus’ Shirtless Photo, A “Joke”, Says FBI Investigator

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – According to the FBI agent conducting the investigation on David Petraeus’ case, the shirtless photo that he sent to his colleagues was a joke. Frederick Humphries further revealed that the image was not sent only to Jill Kelley, but also to other colleagues working in the FBI.

Frederick Humphries released his first interview in relation to David Petraeus’ case which he has been investigating for the past five months. He declared that the shirtless photo he took after a day of Swat training was sent in 2010 as a joke, but it was interpreted as a sexually charged message due to the recent sex scandal between David Petraeus and biographer Paula Broadwell.

Jill Kelley was one of the recipients of the photo, so “Agent Shirtless” as he is now known among his colleagues wanted to put an end to all the press speculations by presenting his side of the story. He stated that Jill asked him to take a look at the harassing emails she received from another woman and they eventually discovered that Petraeus was having an affair with Broadwell.

Several other agents hurried to testify that Humphries has nothing to do with the recent scandal and that he is in fact a good professional. Andrew Hamilton has had the chance of working with Humphries during the “millennium bomber” case which took place many years ago. He told the press that Humphries was selected because he was a “top-notch” operative who could speak French fluently.

According to Hamilton, the “millennium bomber” case took several years to solve, so he and Humphries spent a lot of time together. Despite the jokes he might have made, “Agent Shirtless” has always been “through and honest” making the other agents feel lucky to have him on their team.

Alfred Humphries decided to surprise his colleagues in 2010 by sending them a funny image of himself. The agent had just completed a day of Swat training and thought it would be nice to take a picture with the two bullet-ridden target dummies that looked very much like him. The joke was highly appreciated back then, but it was closely analysed after David Petraeus’ affair was discovered five months ago.

John McCain Misses Classified Briefing To Slam Obama Over Libya Attack

John McCain was supposed to attend a classified briefing on Wednesday, but he missed it because he was too busy slamming Obama over his belated response to the Libyan attack. The senator, who was expected to respond to various questions related to the Benghazi attack as a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, chose to skip the meeting, the Inquisitr informs.

Officials from the State Department, the Pentagon, the CIA and the National Counterterrorism Center organized a three-hour briefing on Wednesday in order to put together the missing pieces of the Libyan attack on September 11. John McCain was supposed to attend the briefing as a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. He, nevertheless, chose to spend the three hours investigating the White House’s response to the Benghazi attack instead of taking part in the briefing.

The senator declared that it was impossible for him to meet the officials as a result of a “scheduling conflict”. He was replaced by the other members of the committee who were forced to answer various questions about the situation. McCain considered that criticizing the White House’s response to the attack was much more important than the briefing itself.

He first voiced his dissatisfactions during a recent press conference. John McCain declared back then that he finds it very odd that there are still many unanswered questions even though two months have gone by since the Benghazi attack. Although he promised to observe the recommendations that the administration will make, McCain thinks the Congress should conduct its own investigation about the attack.

Some analysts have stated that McCain might have found the answers he was looking for during the Wednesday’s briefing. Susan Collins, on the other hand, claims the meeting was too shallow to help the committee solve the problem they are now facing with. Despite this, he doesn’t agree with McCain’s decision to form a new committee because the Senate and the Intelligence Committees are already taking care of the matter.

BP Agrees To $4.5 Billion Settlement Over 2010 Oil Spill

Two years after the Gulf of Mexico damaging oil spill, pleads guilty for 11 deaths. This Thursday, BP announced it has agreed to a $4.5 billion settlement with the U.S. government over the 2010 oil spill.

The $4.5 billion settlement includes the biggest criminal penalty in the nation’s history but we wonder what else was taken of a list that includes manslaughter charges and lying to the Congress. It’s also not even close if you ask environmental groups and it’s also not the end of penalties.

“We believe this resolution is in the best interest of BP and its shareholders” said BP chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg. “It removes two significant legal risks and allows us to vigorously defend the company against the remaining civil claims” he added about the $4.5 billion settlement.

Since the 2010 oil spill, BP has changed management hoping it will be enough to convince investors everything is fine. Yet, two years haven’t been enough, as the $4.5 billion settlement is something everybody agrees is not enough. It also raises questions about the other charges that were dropped off the list for a certain price.

The $4.5 billion settlement features payments worth $2.4 billion for the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, $350 million to the National Academy of Sciences and $500 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The settlement has BP pleading guilty for the oil spin and 11 felony charges of misconduct and neglect. BP is also agreed to play guilty for lying to the Congress about how much oil actually spilled.

“With these unprecedented criminal penalties assessed, I urge the Obama administration to be equally aggressive in securing civil monies that can help save our Louisiana coast” argued Louisiana Senator David Vitter. “I certainly hope they didn’t trade any of those monies away just to nail this criminal scalp to the wall” he added.

The BP deal has already drawn a lot of criticism from environmental groups. “This fine amounts to a rounding error for a corporation the size of BP” reacted Greenpeace. 

And families of people who died during the Golf Mexico oil spill agree the settlement and charges are not exactly helding someone accountable for what happened. “It just bothers me so bad when I see the commercials on TV and they brag about how the Gulf is back, but they never say anything about the 11 lives that were lost” said Nelda Winslette of Yorktown Texas. “They want us to forget about it, but they don’t know what they’ve done to the families that lost someone”.

NYC Nanny Accused Of Killing Two Children

Reuters reports that a nanny from New York City is accused of killing two children who were found death in their parents’ apartment in Manhattan. Yoselyn Ortega was charged with two counts of first and second degree murder by a grand jury in New York City.

Marina Krim returned to her home in the Upper West Side on October 25 and found the lifeless bodies of her children Lucia, 6, and her brother, Leo, 2, in the bathtub. Yoselyn Ortega, the nanny who was supposed to take care of the children, attempted to kill herself in front of Krim; she was rescued and is now under police surveillance at the hospital.

The 50-year-old woman was arrested 10 days ago after police officers, who interviewed her in the hospital room, agreed that she should be indicted on murder charges. Investigators still haven’t managed to determine what might have pushed Ortega to act the way she did, but they will continue to search the house for further evidence.

The Krims never suspected Ortega could be capable of murder. The latter had been working for them for two years and was a close friend of the family. In fact, she lived with her son and sister near her employers’ apartment and constantly displayed an irreproachable behavior. She gained her U.S. citizenship more than a decade ago, so the Krims had no reason to suspect her of murder when they agreed to hire her.

On the day of the killing, Marina was supposed to meet Ortega and her two children at a local dance studio. She returned home and asked the doorman if the nanny left the house because the lights were out. When she entered the house, she found the two children in the bathroom and later on, encountered Ortega. The father, Kevin Krim was returning home from a business trip at the time of the killing.

Waffle House CEO Investigated For Sexual Harassment

Based on a recent report published by Fox News, Waffle House CEO, Joe W. Rogers Jr. is currently being investigated for sexual harassment after one of his former employees’ accused him of forcing her to have sex with him. The executive claims the woman is only trying to blackmail him and he refuses to become a victim of extortion.

Joe W. Rogers Jr. has always had a good reputation as the chief executive of the restaurant chain Waffle House. The recent accusations, however, that were brought against him by a former employee might have irrevocably stained his name. The woman filed a complaint at the Atlanta Police Department stating that Rogers forced her to have sex with him in order to maintain her job.

According to the former employee, the sexual harassment went on for more than 10 years, from 2003 until June 2012. She tried to protest against Rogers’ demands, but she desperately needed her job, so she agreed to have sex with him.

Rogers, on the other hand, claims the woman is not telling the truth. He acknowledged the fact that she used to be his housekeeper for the past ten years, but denied all the accusations that she brought against him.

According to his statement, in the past eight years, Rogers went from being single to being separated and eventually re-married to his current wife. He admitted that during this period of time he had infrequent intercourses with his former housekeeper, but they all took place with the woman’s consent.

As a matter of fact, she left her job as a housekeeper in 2008 and was rehired later on as the manager of the house until last June when she quit her job. Soon after her departure, the woman sent Rogers a letter informing him of all the accusations that she plans to bring against him in court. Rogers and his legal representative have not been intimidated by the woman’s allegations. They claim they have enough evidence to support their case and prove that the former housekeeper is only trying to get millions of dollars from her employer.

Employees Not Happy Black Friday Starts Earlier This Year

Whereas some of you (most of you) have been waiting for Black Friday anxiously for almost a year, employees kind of dread it. And since Black Friday starts earlier this year and store employees are not that happy.

Since data said this year’s Black Friday wasn’t going to be as profitable as that of 2011, retailers found a way to increase their odds for better revenue. Starting the holiday season with a good push does wonders for executives’ well-being. In the meanwhile, starting Black Friday on 8 or 9 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day has employees complaining this is taking too far.

You know when a company is in trouble the minute employees start complaining about it. This time it’s not just Walmart or Target, it’s this whole Black Friday thing that has become the highlight of the Thanksgiving Day. It was once all about having time with family and eating turkey but now it’s about catching the best Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals and the best place in line waiting for the Walmart grand opening.

A Target employee says opening earlier for Black Friday is pushing it too far, even for her and the other staff that love working for the company. CNN writes about Casey St. Clair, a Target employee, who has started a petition on Change.org to cancel the plan to open the store on Thanksgiving Day.

“It shouldn’t have to be a rushed affair, slipping in to eat some turkey and taking a piece of pie for the road” the Target employee says. “It’s one of few days retail employees get to spend with their families, but at this point there’s no time to see family” she told CNN in a phone interview.

St. Clair explains her anger with Black Friday starting early isn’t directed at people who are waiting for the discounts, but with retailers that keep pushing the opening time earlier and earlier each year. “My issue is that Target and other retailers have done something they have never done before in opening on Thanksgiving” she adds. “My anger is aimed at the loss of a day that, up until now, was considered important enough for only the most essential services to open”.

Could Macy’s Dump Trump For Online Petition?

Macy’s could be forced to dump Donald Trump if many more people sign the online petition asking the retailer to stop commercializing the real estate mogul’s products. Nearly 500,000 people have signed the petition, so far and their number could get even bigger in the following days, ABC News informs.

Donald Trump showed no signs of anxiety when he was first notified that people have created an online petition asking Macy’s to stop commercializing his products. His confidence diminished in the past days as the number of people signing the “Dump Trump” petition grew significantly. Although he expected millions of Twitter followers to offer him support, Trump was taken aback by the 500,000 signatures, some of them belonging to well-known celebrities.

Singer Cher was among the first celebrities to react against Trump’s comments. On Sunday, she posted a message on her Twitter account calling the real estate mogul a “racist cretin” wearing a “rug”. In her opinion, the American business man was only looking to get some “cheap press” through his comments and he managed to do it due to people’s attention. The singer was more worried, however, about the fact that Macy’s considers Trump the right man to represent them and their products. As a consequence, she was glad to see that 30-year-old lawyer Angelo Carusone decided to make an online petition against Donald.

Carusone told the press that he was particularly disturbed by one of Macy’s ads in which there is a reference to Trump’s comment claiming that Obama was not born in America. He believes most people who signed the petition were just as upset as he was to see that Macy’s would lower themselves to Trump’s negative remarks. It is unclear for the moment whether the giant retailer will eventually “dump Trump”, but Carusone is glad his petition gave lots of people the possibility to voice their grievance.

Donald Trump was quick to respond to Cher’s Twitter comment. He replied that he is not wearing a “rug” and ironically promised the singer not to say a word about the failed plastic surgeries she suffered in the past. He continued to stir people’s fury by writing on Tuesday that his fragrance “Success” is “flying off the shelves @Macys”.

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