Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Somewhere in the Oxymoron Hall Of Fame a new star is born, given that it's an extreme challenge to pack three into a five word phrase.
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
When will this f*ng crap ever end? I'm old and I vividly remember those days of being tormented for being fat (a road down which society appears to be heading). Fortunately, I discovered the bully solution without having to use a weapon. Other times, people do not. Again, where is the adult intervention in all this? Are people afraid of being jumped on by Little Johnny or Janey's parents? Probably. But at some point society will have to quit biting its collective tongue and call poor parenting and bullying what it is-- completely unacceptable.
'This is a group that I would classify as neither a militia or a Christian group,' said Michael Lackomar, a member of the Southeast Michigan Volunteer Militia. 'They're really a fringe group outside of anything we do.
'They're more of a private army or a terrorist organization or really just a criminal organization...'"
Monday, March 29, 2010
Maybe there is hope for the Republican Party.
This is no longer about political dissent. It is about storm trooper sound bites, and hate. This isn't the kind of honest debate on which our system of government has been built. It is vile, back-alley fighting, getting worse by the day, with no end in sight. People say that opposition to all Presidents, even the most unpopular white ones, sounds like this. No, it doesn't..."
"...But in the hours after Democrats approved the sweeping legislation, a GOP counter-narrative emerged, fed by David Frum, a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush.
It was the Republican Party that made the big mistake, Frum argued, by losing its grand bet that unified opposition to Obamacare could prevent the measure from becoming law. "Conservatives and Republicans today suffered their most crushing legislative defeat since the 1960s. It's hard to exaggerate the magnitude of the disaster," Frum wrote on his Web site, FrumForum.com, in a column that Democrats quickly pounced on to highlight division in the Republican ranks. While Republicans may win a short-term benefit in the form of more seats in Congress after November, Frum argued, that will be little compensation for the enactment of a liberal policy objective that could last generations and will be difficult if not impossible to repeal..."
Sunday, March 28, 2010
In fact, the current surge of anger — and the accompanying rise in right-wing extremism — predates the entire health care debate. The first signs were the shrieks of “traitor” and “off with his head” at Palin rallies as Obama’s election became more likely in October 2008. Those passions have spiraled ever since — from Gov. Rick Perry’s kowtowing to secessionists at a Tea Party rally in Texas to the gratuitous brandishing of assault weapons at Obama health care rallies last summer to “You lie!” piercing the president’s address to Congress last fall like an ominous shot.
If Obama’s first legislative priority had been immigration or financial reform or climate change, we would have seen the same trajectory. The conjunction of a black president and a female speaker of the House — topped off by a wise Latina on the Supreme Court and a powerful gay Congressional committee chairman — would sow fears of disenfranchisement among a dwindling and threatened minority in the country no matter what policies were in play. It’s not happenstance that Frank, Lewis and Cleaver — none of them major Democratic players in the health care push — received a major share of last weekend’s abuse. When you hear demonstrators chant the slogan “Take our country back!,” these are the people they want to take the country back from.
Now that Frum is the right wing's victim, rather than its enforcer, he's easy to sympathize with. But it seems that the fundamental problem is more in the idea that conservatism has to be a monolith at all times. For a movement that has become obsessed with warding off the evils of socialism, the right wing does dearly love a purge."
The GOP will be angry.
Saturday, March 27, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
"Dark flow" is no fluke, suggests a new study that strengthens the case for unknown, unseen "structures" lurking on the outskirts of creation.
In 2008 scientists reported the discovery of hundreds of galaxy clusters streaming in the same direction at more than 2.2 million miles (3.6 million kilometers) an hour.
This mysterious motion can't be explained by current models for distribution of mass in the universe. So the researchers made the controversial suggestion that the clusters are being tugged on by the gravity of matter outside the known universe..."
If it is outside our Universe, then we need a new definition of "universe," among other things--like a 500 point IQ boost to wrap our collective minds around this subject.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
"...Between the the and the bigotry, you give me and the rest of the left wing of this nation comfort in your hour of pain.
You can spin your,viciousness and terrorism anyway you want to, but the simple truth is, you're nothing but a bunch of pantywaist little girls who lost your Barbie dolls because Mommy and Daddy decided to teach you a lesson, and gave her to the nice girl down the street who has very little to begin with.
Instead of viewing this as an act of Christian kindness, you choose to view it through a lens of entitlement. Instead of accepting the consequences of running this nation into the ground by supporting a dimwit conservative who wholeheartedly embraced a conservative agenda until even that low-level moron realized how much damage he had caused this once-great and powerful nation, you choose now to have some sort of "uprising," believing your positions of entitlement in the mainstream media and in low-levels of power will protect you..."
The number of valid signatures reported by Los Angeles County, submitted minutes before Wednesday's 5 p.m. deadline, put the measure well beyond the 433,971 it needed to be certified. Supporters turned in 694,248 signatures, collecting them in every county except Alpine. County election officials estimated that 523,531 were valid..."
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
The health bill President Barack Obama signed into law Tuesday requires that restaurant chains post calorie counts for all the food items they sell. The law covers any chain with at least 20 outlets, amounting to more than 200,000 restaurants nationwide..."
Well, that is at least one good thing in this bill.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called it insulting to the United States earlier this month that the Jewish state announced new construction on disputed land while Vice President Joe Biden was visiting. Not only did the Israeli declaration seem designed to torpedo indirect peace talks with the Palestinians, which the United States had just painstakingly arranged, but it came during a trip by the highest-ranking member of the Obama administration yet to visit the country.
Then the United Kingdom lost patience with Israel, expelling a diplomat after a British investigation concluded that the Jewish state had almost certainly faked British passports as part of a plot to kill a Hamas weapons merchant.
British Foreign Secretary David Miliband on Tuesday called the apparent forgery intolerable, saying that such a move coming from an ally 'only adds insult to injury.'
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Because it isn't about 'universal health care.' It's about controlling women, period. It's about sticking your nose in other people's business. It's about pushing your religious beliefs on everyone else because voices in your head tell you your Jesus is The One -- even though your Jesus never said one single solitary word in any of the four gospels of the Bible about abortion or fertilized eggs being human. You've just gone and made it up about 'life beginning at conception.' Jesus never said that. The little voice in your head said that, the same little voice that wants your grubby paws on women's uteruses. You need help. Please get some help and leave the rest of us alone, Mr. Stupak and friends..."
Another threw money at the man, first one bill and then another, and said contemptuously, “I’ll pay for this guy. Here you go. Start a pot...”"
Monday, March 22, 2010
Tea Party leaders, livid over the passage of health care reform on Sunday night, say their next step will be to turn from fighting the bill to running the people who voted for it out of Congress..."
Gee, I guess they're scared of losing all those Republican votes they were planning on getting in November. I'm sure if they had voted against Obamacare, the GOP would have lined up in obedient droves to vote for a Democrat over a Republican. So how long of a memory do you suppose the Independents, you know, the swing voters have? Were they were 100% against the bill, or were they split 60/40 or something? Maybe something important will happen between now and November. Who knows?
Among 50 U.S. cities studied for their vulnerability to cybercrime, Seattle came out on top as the riskiest place, followed by Boston, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco, according to the report 'Norton's Top 10 Riskiest Online Cities,' released Monday.
In an effort to study and rank the nation's riskiest cities for cybercrime, Symantec partnered with research firm Sperling's BestPlaces. The two companies used their own internal research and also checked out key facts and figures on each city, including the number of malware attacks, the number of spam zombies, the number of infected computers, the levels of Internet access, and the number of Wi-Fi hotspots..."
Sunday, March 21, 2010
I can just hear the anti-choice crowd now. “Why should we pay for something that’s going to offend our consciences?” Jeez, I dunno. Why do I have to pay for faith based initiatives? How about we pass a separate bill that requires all of the religious people out there to write separate checks to cover church based charities that discriminate against the gay community or actively practice discrimination in their church hierarchy? That kind of crap really frosts my crockies and offends my conscience down to the quick but I still have to pay for it. There is no little box on the tax return form that says, “Would you like to make a donation to faith based initiatives? Or war in Iraq? Or TARP?” No, all of the stupid laws and bills and war resolutions that have passed in the past decade because it was possible to fool most of the people enough of the time have cost me and my cohort and we have had very little choice in the matter. A Republican dictator president wielded his veto pen like it was a baton and threatened to use it with relish. We just had to go along with it..."
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
'Now this is unseemly, exploitative, an 11-year-old boy being forced to tell his story all over just to benefit the Democrat Party and Barack Obama …And, I would say this to Marcelas Owens : 'Well, your mom would still have died, because Obamacare doesn't kick in until 2014.''
Beck, on the pro-reform group that brought Marcelas to Washington, DC to talk about health care:
'That's the George Soros-funded Obama-approved group fighting for health care…Since all of the groups are so concerned and involved now, may I ask where were you when Marcelas' mother was vomiting blood?'"
A new Fox News poll asked that question, and the answer could be bad news for incumbents this fall..."
...and since most incumbents are Democrats, then Fox's pollees want to chuck the Dems. Now that's a big surprise.
In March 2007 the US media giant filed a $1bn lawsuit against Google, alleging the video-sharing site was responsible for Viacom-owned clips posted to YouTube.
Now, in the latest soap opera-like twist, YouTube chief counsel Zahavah Levine has claimed that Viacom hired firms to upload its videos to the Google-owned site to help bolster its copyright violation allegations..."
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Well, Mr. Obama, you can't say you weren't warned about trying to coddle the enemy.
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
...all which makes the surrender of Dennis Kucinich far less important.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Ok. I'm already freaked out. For more, click on the link.
Let the crying (and television commercials) begin.
"By JOHN BOEHNER
AND MITCH MCCONNELL
A little over a year ago, when President Obama first took up health-care reform, Republicans reached out to him in the hopes of working together on solutions that would lower health-care costs for families and small businesses. A bipartisan bill focused on lower costs could have been sent to the president's desk last year, and it would have received the support of the American people..."
No, this is not satire lifted from The Onion.
I'll let the people who don't have to get to work right now write the response (I'm thinking fish and rain barrels here).
Monday, March 15, 2010
"...Beck apologized recently for wasting his audience’s time following a hilariously absurd and demented interview with disgraced tickling enthusiast and former Congressman Eric Massa. But not to worry, he’s back to whatever passes for normal now.
FOX’s “news” operation didn’t show restraint or a desire for fact-checking while helping pump damaging, and false stories about the Clintons into the media churn, with the Vince Foster conspiracy theory still holding a strong showing behind the JFK assassination.
And it’s not as if Beck makes money for the network. He’s a loss leader (here’s a partial list of companies that have pulled their ads, despite Beck’s strong ratings). There are rumblings that Rupert Murdoch’s children are fed up with the drama surrounding FOX News’s foolishness, but you can bet that as long as daddy Rupert is in charge and Roger Ailes continues to draw breath nothing will change..."
That's a good thing. Yes, Obama would rather have dinner with his wife than with, say, John Boehner. Wouldn't you? (With your own spouse, I mean; you don't get to choose dinner with Michelle.) I'm glad to have a president for whom family values isn't just a slogan -- and a president who cares about policy..."
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Once again, I find myself sounding the alarm that the latest vision of education reform is deeply flawed. But this time my warning carries a personal rebuke. For much of the last two decades, I was among those who jumped aboard the choice and accountability bandwagon. Choice and accountability, I believed, would offer a chance for poor children to escape failing schools. Testing and accountability, I thought, would cast sunshine on low-performing schools and lead to improvement. It all seemed to make sense, even if there was little empirical evidence, just promise and hope.
Today there is empirical evidence, and it shows clearly that choice, competition and accountability as education reform levers are not working. But with confidence bordering on recklessness, the Obama administration is plunging ahead, pushing an aggressive program of school reform -- codified in its signature Race to the Top program -- that relies on the power of incentives and competition. This approach may well make schools worse, not better..."
Saturday, March 13, 2010
In the abandoned mines and sandstones of the Midwest, compressed-air storage ventures are trying to convert the intermittent motions of the air into the kind of steady power that could displace coal.
Compressed-air energy storage plants use compressors to store electricity generated when it’s not needed. The air, pumped into large underground formations, is like a spring that’s been squeezed and when it’s needed, it can deliver a large percentage of the energy that it received.
The first and only such plant in the United States went online in 1991, and though the technology didn’t take off, it did prove that it worked. And now, combining cheap wind energy and compressed-air storage could create a potent new force in the electricity markets..."
And you expected something different?
Why blow $500 to $830 on a device that may not be what you expect?..."
The last time I trusted Apple they screwed me for $2000, which would be a bunch in today's money. Oh, yeah. "Apple II Forever!" .
So is it just a ruse? Are they waiting for the power moment, when everything will all of a sudden become a life and death issue entangled with abortion and gay rights?
Friday, March 12, 2010
Thursday, March 11, 2010
House GOP imposes sweeping earmark ban - On Politics: Covering the US Congress, Governors, and the 2010 Election - USATODAY.com: "House Republicans today agreed to a sweeping moratorium on all funding requests for pet projects, known as earmarks.
The move, approved in a closed-door meeting, is an escalation of efforts by Democrats and Republicans to claim the higher ground on ethics in advance of November's midterm congressional elections.."
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Note to Verizon, et.al.: you start screwing with the Silent Majority and things could become very bad for you.
Glen Greenwald had a bit to say on the matter, too:
"...What makes Roberts' petty, self-absorbed grievance all the more striking is that this is what judges do all the time. It's the essence of the judicial branch. Federal judges are basically absolute tyrants who rule over their courtroom and those in it with virtually no restraints. They can and do scold, criticize, berate, mock, humiliate and threaten anyone who appears before their little fiefdoms -- parties, defendants, lawyers, witnesses, audience members -- and not merely "decorum," but the force of law (in the form of contempt citations or other penalties), compels the target to sit silently and not respond. In fact, lawyers can be, and have been, punished just for publicly criticizing a judge..."
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
At how many G's?
Unlike you I have learned the lessons of Nuremberg. Unlike you I remember and understand the historical precedent of governments run by dictators and thugs–Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot. While George Bush is not a criminal on par with those scum, he still engaged in practices that, no matter how noble his intention, presented a direct threat to our system of government and the principle that the government is limited in what it can do to individuals..."
Some Democrats, buoyed by what they see as a public-relations boost from Republican Sen. Jim Bunning's recent legislative blockade, want to change that. Filibusters, holds and other roadblocks shouldn't be bloodless affairs, they say; if Republicans want to hold up action, they should stay on the Senate floor and make their case..."
Go ahead, GOP. Incite a few more lunatics into domestic violence.
If you’ve followed politics for more than one election cycle, you’d immediately catch the hypocrisy involved here.
Back in 2005, when Republicans were in control of the Senate and the presidency, Democrats repeatedly used the filibuster to block extremely Christian right-wing judges.
Republicans complained and initiated what Democrats called “the nuclear option,” an attempt to end the filibuster and require only 51 votes instead of 60 to confirm these judicial nominees.
Notorious right-wing Christian leader James Dobson said about eliminating the filibuster: “The future of democracy and ordered liberty actually depends on the outcome of this struggle.” That’s right, Republicans and far-right wingers were claiming that eliminating it was essential to saving democracy..."
Monday, March 08, 2010
Average retail gasoline prices, continuing a surge that started last month, have now matched their 2010 high on the way to prices that many analysts believe will top $3 per gallon this spring..."
It all sounds good until you consider the source.
The campaign will essentially put an enforcement stick behind the carrot of the administration's $4.35 billion Race to the Top program, which holds out the promise of extra federal funding if states revamp their education policies. While Race to the Top will reward school reforms, the civil-rights push will emphasize the potential to punish offending schools..."
Sunday, March 07, 2010
Insurance companies are the real winners in Obamacare. Their objections to the plan have been coy and tepid because insurance company executives know that Obamacare’s forced mandates will not only fill their coffers — the companies anticipate at least $500 billion revenue in the next 10 years..."
Saturday, March 06, 2010
That's because it's impossible to know. No one knows, yet both sides are trying to convince us they have the facts..."
Friday, March 05, 2010
The answer, of course, is that bipartisanship is now a foolish dream. How can the parties agree on policy when they have utterly different visions of how the economy works, when one party feels for the unemployed, while the other weeps over affluent victims of the “death tax”?
Which brings us to the central political issue right now: health care reform. If Congress enacts reform in the next few weeks — and the odds are growing that it will — it will do so without any Republican votes. Some people will decry this, insisting that President Obama should have tried harder to gain bipartisan support. But that isn’t going to happen, on health care or anything else, for years to come.
Someday, somehow, we as a nation will once again find ourselves living on the same planet. But for now, we aren’t. And that’s just the way it is."
With Artificial Photosynthesis, A Bottle of Water Could Produce Enough Energy To Power A House | Popular Science "...One of the interesting side effects of last year's stimulus bill was $400 million in funding for ARPA-E, the civilian, energy-focused cousin of DARPA. And in this week's first ever ARPA-E conference, MIT chemist Dan Nocera showed how well he put that stimulus money to use by highlighting his new photosynthetic process. Using a special catalyst, the process splits water into oxygen and hydrogen fuel efficiently enough to power a home using only sunlight and a bottle of water..."
Thursday, March 04, 2010
It was unclear, however, if the Arctic emissions of methane gas were new or had been going on unnoticed for centuries -- since before the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century led to wide use of fossil fuels that are blamed for climate change..."
The deceased? Internet Explorer 6..."
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
I am a First Amendment freak 99% of the time, but this, I think is a one percent case.
But I have to take issue with her description of Obama's political stance. He is not and never has been a Leftist and/or a Progressive. This is pure right wing propaganda. Obama has always been a loyal corporatist tool and it is an insult to leftists and progressives everywhere to call him one.
In fact, Obama's great mistake was in not being leftist enough: had he pushed through 'socialized' medecine (i.e., Single Payer, Medicare Part E or even the Nose of the Camel Under the Tent - the Public Option), had he told the banksters after TARP I, 'Sorry folks, you already got $800 billion, there's no more in the kitty for you.' Had he nationalized the banks and put a moratorium on foreclosures, had he started a massive infrastructure repair program creating a million or two new jobs...
then you might have been able to legitimately call him a leftist and/or progressive and the right wing Randites and Paultards could froth at the mouth with good reason.
But no, Lady de Rothschild, Obama is no more leftist than George W. Bush was - in fact he's exactly like GWB and that's what pisses me off because I and a few others knew what he was two years ago. I'm glad you were with us but very sorry to hear that you apparently didn't understand why."
I Told You So - Page 1 - The Daily Beast: "...The health-care summit vividly demonstrated Mr. Obama’s fake bipartisanship. When he was a candidate, we celebrated when he said, “We are not red or blue states. We are the United States of America.” But candidate Obama had no record of bipartisan behavior. Ironically, the one time that Obama entered into a bipartisan effort was with, of all people, John McCain. He reached across the aisle to draft ethics reform legislation with Senator McCain. But when Obama returned to the Democratic establishment with a bill that did not meet their favor, he backed away fast. It was candidate McCain who had worked productively and regularly with Democrats, like with Russ Feingold on campaign-finance reform and Ted Kennedy on immigration. The record told me more than the rhetoric about which candidate would honestly respect the other side and reach across the aisle to find the best solutions for America..."
President Obama proclaims his plan (whatever it finally is) to be 'reform.' But from what I can see, it would merely feed, at taxpayer expense, 30 million currently 'uncovered' people into a wasteful system that doesn't have either the price-signaling power of a marketplace or the sweeping overview and control of a state-run bureacracy..." (sic).
I hate this. I've always like Rangel for his calls to draft everyone and make the rich and privileged share the burden of defending this country, instead of just hiring the help.
Not being a fan of anything really, really overpriced (like any Apple product, any telephone, or anything with the name Adobe on it), I'm not sure this is the consumer's friend, but the idea, like many from TiVo, is terrific. Ok. Looking for something political now.
Tuesday, March 02, 2010
Further proof that the Republican Party's 'big tent' has become a bughouse."
Monday, March 01, 2010
Braly's words are a reminder of the most important unasked question in the entire healthcare debate: What do we need insurance companies for, anyway?..."
'I, for one, genuinely wish that the climate crisis were an illusion,' Gore wrote in an op-ed piece in The New York Times.
'But unfortunately, the reality of the danger we are courting has not been changed by the discovery of at least two mistakes' in reports by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change..."