Patt Morrison for April 19, 2010

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The fallout from the Securities & Exchange Commission enforcement case against Goldman Sachs continued over the weekend with more revelations about how Goldman allegedly bet against its own mortgage funds, turning huge profits on the record losses of the housing market. While more light was shed on the complicated “Abacus” scheme that Goldman created with a hedge fund, Goldman itself went on the defensive questioning the timing of the fraud case. The implication, which was also carefully expressed by some Republican members of Congress, was that there were more politics than regulation at work when the SEC announced it was going after Goldman, big boost to the effort to overhaul financial regulation. From fraud to synthetic collateralized debt obligations to mid-term elections—the intrigue over Goldman Sachs and the legacy of our financial industry collapse is sure to grow larger.
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There have been countless earthquakes around the globe. Now the volcanic eruption in Iceland leads many to wonder if California could be next. California is better known for its earthquakes, but there are volcanoes around, like Mammoth Mountain. Patt talks to a geologist to find out whether or not an eruption is in sight.
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Paula Deen’s Savannah Style

America loves success stories. The more tribulation you overcome, the more America tends to embrace you, no matter how odd the circumstances. No where does this ring truer than that of celebrity chef Paula Deen. Paula is well known for her Southern dishes and flavor, but that is literally the topping on a cake of dysfunction. Paula’s parents died when she was 19 and she developed agoraphobia, rendering incapable of even leaving her house. But like any great chef, when life handed her lemons, she mixed it with butter. She developed her eccentric style of food creation while she was housebound. She parlayed all that experience and talent into restaurants, a dessert line, and a couple of TV shows with the Food Network. In her new book, "Paula Deen's Savannah Style" the fabulous Chef takes readers on a pictorial tour of her beloved Savannah giving them a sneak peak at her house, her friend’s houses and her favorite places around the town.
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Remember back in 1994, when then-Republican-hopeful Newt Gingrich drafted a “Contract with America,” identifying specific pieces of legislation that Republicans could pass if only the American people would entrust them with control of the House? It worked then, and now, as mid-term elections near, Republicans are looking at recycling an old page out of the play book, only they’re divided on how much detail to commit to. House Minority Whip Eric Cantor wants a document like the last one—a laundry list of legislation, whereas Congressmen like Kevin McCarthy—who is leading the effort to draft the contract—thinks that much specificity smacks of the backroom deals the GOP accuses Democrats of making. Patt talks with Republicans on all sides of the issue about what the American people want from the Republican Party come November.
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Betting on Hollywood

No really, you may be able to bet on the success or failure of big studio releases. Will Iron Man II flop or set box office records? You be the judge but be prepared to throw down some cash. The Commodities Futures Trading Commission just gave the “green light” to two companies, including Cantor Fitzgerald, that are seeking to establish futures trading on box-office performance. But hold on a minute says some in the industry, this may help reduce the financial risk associated with marketing and releasing these films but what about the obvious potential for conflicts of interest and insider trading? That has some lawmakers and industry heavyweights concerned including the MPAA (representing 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Universal Studios and Disney Studios), the DGA, the International Alliance of Theatrical State Employees and the Independent Film and Television Alliance. So, what’s the likelihood of this moving forward? Want to bet?
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Carol Burnett & Tim Conway, together again

One of the most beloved entertainers in America, Carol Burnett struck a chord with audiences for five decades. She was the first woman to host her own comedy variety show, the spectacularly popular The Carol Burnett Show, and to date, she has been nominated for twenty-three Emmys. She joins Patt with her new book “This Time Together,” chock-full of anecdotes about her time on the show and her work with comedy and cultural greats from Johnny Carson, Beverly Sills, Julie Andrews, Lucille Ball, James Stewart, Ray Charles, Harvey Korman, and of course, Tim Conway, who joins Patt and Carol to reminisce.
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