TomCat

Nov 272014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 22.  It’s already evening, and I just started cooking, because I slept most of the day.  Yesterday’s CoDA meeting in prison was excellent.  We discussed what it means to be willing to make amends to the people we have harmed.  My guys showed authentic insight, but more than that would violate confidentiality.  I was especially exhausted, because having to meet my ride away from downtown upped my walking total to over two miles.  (Later:  I fell asleep at my desk and just woke up.)

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 6:44 (average 5:30).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Media Matters: Thanksgiving Survival Guide

Don’t let right-wing lies ruin your Thanksgiving dinner.

This year, be ready with the facts.

1127net_neutrality_TGiving

This is just one of twelve fact cards. Click through for the other eleven.

From NY Times: With negotiators nearing an accord on permanent tax breaks for businesses worth $440 billion over 10 years, President Obama rallied Democratic opposition on Tuesday and promised a veto.

“The president would veto the proposed deal because it would provide permanent tax breaks to help well-connected corporations while neglecting working families,” said Jennifer Friedman, a White House spokeswoman.

The deal, negotiated by House Republicans and aides to Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the outgoing majority leader, showed how much power has shifted since the Republican election victories this month. The negotiations fractured Democrats, and separated the Obama administration from Mr. Reid.

So he should. It looks like Leg Hound Harry is back.

Reid-LegHound

From KGW: Hundreds of protesters clashed with police during a rally against the Ferguson ruling Tuesday night.

Seven people were arrested, police said, mostly for interfering with an officer and disorderly conduct. None of them remained in jail Wednesday morning.

 

Needless to say, the news coverage of Portland’s protest was biased.

Cartoon:

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No pardon for this turkey!!

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Nov 262014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, Day 21.  This is my only article.  I have to leave early and meet my ride to prison several miles away to avoid the Ferguson protests.  Tomorrow the cooking begins.

Excellent meeting.  Exhausted.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:24 (average 5:58).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Fantasy Football Report:

Here’s the latest from our own fantasy football league, Lefty Blog Friends.

Scores:

12Scores

That was a last minute shock! :-(

Standings:

12Standings

There are only two weeks left before our playoffs begin.  Can I toast the toester?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: From NPR station KCUR:

Although gay and lesbian couples are getting married in at least 24 Kansas counties, Gov. Sam Brownback won’t allow any state recognition of the unions.

Brownback said Thursday that he won’t offer any of the benefits heterosexual couples get, such as name changes on a driver’s license or employee benefits for gay and lesbian state workers.

“There is still considerable legal ambiguity on the topic of same-sex marriage,” said Eileen Hawley, a Brownback spokeswoman. “Once that ambiguity is gone, the governor will direct state agencies to comply with applicable laws.”

When the Supreme Court refused to extend the temporary stay, he said [pseudo-Christians delinked]:

I swore an oath to support the Constitution of the State of Kansas. I will review this ruling with the attorney general and see how best we continue those efforts.

In other words: Marriage discrimination now, marriage discrimination tomorrow, marriage discrimination forever!

Is it realistic to think he is impeachable? This is the Theocracy that the idiots who elected him want.

From NY Times: Months of anger and frustration, in the end, led only to more anger and frustration.

Shops were looted and burned on Ferguson’s main street. There were smoke bombs, tear gas, thrown rocks and random gunshots. In Ferguson, the aftermath of the shooting death of Michael Brown was almost as bitter and hollow as his killing itself.

Brien Redmon, 31, stood in the cold watching a burning police car and sporadic looting after the announcement that there would be no indictments for Mr. Brown’s death at 18.

While I cannot support rioting, I understand the outrage. Even here, a major demonstration is planned. I lave to leave early and meat my ride to prison five miles away from my home, because the march will be under my window. I almost wish I weren’t going.

From Upworthy: How we treat individuals with disabilities is often colored by how we perceive them and the judgments we make upon first meeting someone with a disability. For this woman, that includes being thought of as a 2-year-old when she’s actually a college student who’s smart as a whip and just happens to have a physical disability. It doesn’t make her less than "normal."

 

One word: Kudos

Cartoon:

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Nov 252014
 

I have several reasons for opposing capital punishment.  One is that killing a defenseless person is the most hypocritical way there is to tell people not to kill.  Another is that nobody is beyond redemption.  Life without possibility of parole protects the public.  One of the men with whom I do volunteer work will never breathe free air, but he’s completely dedicated to helping other prisoners learn mental fitness to help them from making the same mistakes that he committed on the way to becoming a serial killer.  For this reason, I would not favor the death penalty, even for Republican war criminals, who are responsible for more innocent deaths than any death row prisoner.  In addition, far too many innocents have been executed.  Furthermore, there is no way to administer it fairly.  Texas Republicans know the man they want to kill is insane.  But Republicans are the Party of Death.

1125PanettiOn Dec. 3, Texas plans to execute an inmate named Scott Panetti, who was convicted in 1995 for murdering his in-laws with a hunting rifle. There is no question that Mr. Panetti committed the murders. There is also no question that he is severely mentally ill, and has been for decades.

During his capital murder trial, at which he was inexplicably allowed to represent himself, Mr. Panetti dressed in a cowboy suit and attempted to subpoena, among others, John F. Kennedy and Jesus Christ. A standby lawyer said his behavior was “scary” and “trance-like,” and called the trial “a judicial farce.”

It was not an act. Mr. Panetti, now 56, was first diagnosed with schizophrenia when he was 20, and in the years before the murders he was hospitalized several times for delusions and psychotic episodes.

In this respect, he is no different from the estimated 350,000 inmates around the country with mental illness — 10 times the number of people in state psychiatric hospitals. But Mr. Panetti is not just another insane prisoner; his name is synonymous with the Supreme Court’s modern jurisprudence about mental illness on death row. In Panetti v. Quarterman, decided in 2007, the justices held that it is not enough for a defendant simply to be aware that he is going to be executed and why — the previous standard the court had used in permitting the execution of the mentally ill. Rather, he must have a “rational understanding” of why the state plans to kill him.

Noting Mr. Panetti’s “well-documented history of mental illness,” the court held that capital punishment serves no retributive purpose when the defendant’s understanding of crime and punishment is so distorted that it “has little or no relation to the understanding of those concepts shared by the community as a whole.”… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

The Justices did not declare Panetti insane.  They just referred the matter back to the lower court.  Texas courts deferred to Republican blood lust, and unless SCROTUS intervenes, Rick Perry will murder this man on 12/3.  He and the Texas Republican Party are just drooling for more death.

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Nov 252014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 25.  It’s a good thing I did my research early, because, except for a three hour cat nap, I haven’t stopped since 1 AM.  Tomorrow is a prison volunteer day, and Thanksgiving cooking starts Wednesday.  Color me scarce. 

Late (early) Update:

Just woke up.  Ugh!  It looks like Darren Wilson may get away with murder.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:02 (average 4:38).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Koch industries and its subsidiaries are expansive—their holdings include everything from gas stations to pipelines, paper products for everyday use, greeting cards, chemicals used to make materials, and the fabric that makes your clothing.

With an interest in almost everything and status as the number two privately held company in the country–behind Cargill—Koch industries is a behemoth that is hard to avoid.

But knowledge is power and your dollar is your vote. We can become informed purchasers and refuse to support their political agenda by refusing to purchase their wares.

Don’t suck nevermind! Click through to sign the pledge and for a complete list of Koch Brothers Products to boycott.

From VOX: A new poll from finds that 89 percent of Latino voters support President Obama’s executive actions on immigration.

80 percent of Latino voters say they’ll oppose any attempt by Republicans to block Obama’s executive actions

Worryingly for the GOP, that includes 60 percent of Latino Republicans.

I have the same question for Latino Republicans that I have for fay Republicans. Are you a billionaire or a masochist?

From Alternet: Making the Highest Profit Margin in the Corporate World — And Demanding a Tax Cut 

The trading volume on the  Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) reached $1 quadrillion in  notionalvalue [sic] last year. That’s a thousand trillion dollars, about ten times greater than the  world economy.

With the  collection of transfer fees, contract fees, brokerage fees, Globex fees, clearing fees, and surcharges, the company achieved a  profit margin (54%) higher than any of the top 100 companies in the nation from 2008 to 2010, and in the past three years it’s risen to  nearly 60%.

Despite being the most profitable big firm, CME complained that its taxes were too high, and they demanded and received an  $85 million tax break from the State of Illinois. 

This is just one of the seven biggest corporate rip offs of this year. Click through for the other six.

Cartoon:

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What I need!

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Nov 242014
 

Let me begin this with a Hat-Tip to Joanne Dixon.  Even though I’m not using the article she sent me, she’s been hoping I’d cover this story, involving her Senator, for a while now.  For me, it goes much further back.  I was calling for the criminal prosecution of Republican war criminals, during Texas Torquemada’s first term, long before Obama took office.  Anyone who has followed me long term knows that this has been an ongoing issue for me.  One of my pet peeves about the Obama administration has been their failure to pursue this.  Therefore, I feel quite angry that they are now acting to protect Republican war criminals.  I support the Udall plan.

war criminal3White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough met with Senate Democrats Thursday to provide a briefing on President Obama’s immigration plans. But once the immigration talk was over, the meeting reportedly devolved into chaos as an angry lawmaker confronted McDonough over the White House’s foot-dragging and obstruction over releasing the committee’s report on CIA torture.

"It was a vigorous, vigorous and open debate — one of the best and most thorough discussions I’ve been a part of while here," said Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.).

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.), who served as intelligence committee chair before Feinstein, was furious after the meeting, and accused the administration of deliberately stalling the report.

“It’s being slow-walked to death. They’re doing everything they can not to release it," Rockefeller told HuffPost.

war criminal2"It makes a lot of people who did really bad things look really bad, which is the only way not to repeat those mistakes in the future," he continued. "The public has to know about it. They don’t want the public to know about it."

As negotiations continue, Rockefeller said Democrats were thinking creatively about how to resolve the dispute. "We have ideas," he said, adding that reading the report’s executive summary into the record on the Senate floor would probably meet with only limited success. "The question would be how much you could read before they grabbed you and hauled you off."

A question following that is who exactly is going to grab a lawmaker and haul him or her off? A senator on the floor of the chamber is protected by the Constitution. For a sitting senator, the consequences could be severe—loss of committee assignments, of security clearance to have access to classified materials, or even expulsion from Congress. But for an outgoing senator, like Mark Udall, there would be no ramifications… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <Daily Kos>

Go for it, Udall!  We may not realize the hope expressed in the top graphic, but at the very least, I hope it may spur an international response so intense that such heinous criminals as Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Gonzales, Tenet, Feith, Yoo and many more will be unable to set foot outside the US without a permanent trip to The Hague, and they will not ne able to brag about it, as they now do, without prompting sufficient outrage, here in the US, to shame them into silence.

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Nov 242014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 19.  It’s early in the morning, and I plan to finish in time for some intense meditation on the Holy Ellipsoid Orb.  I may be scarce next week as I have a very busy schedule.  Store to Door is closed for Thanksgiving week, so I have a grocery delivery coming from Safeway tomorrow, and I’ll have to stow and put them away.  Tuesday is a prison volunteer day.  Wednesday and Thursday I’ll be cooking up a storm, so I’m not sure how much content I’ll be able to deliver.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:05 (average 5:01).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

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Was that a nail-biter or what!  Wooo Hooo! :-D

Short Takes:

From Upworthy: These guys went across the world because there's a natural wonder that needs saving.

 

Kudos to Upworthy, but nothing is as clickable and shareable as a cat video. Nevertheless, I'd be honored to bring you more #reefreels.

From Right Wing Watch: Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a leader in the anti-immigrant movement, said during his Sunday radio program [fascist delinked] that it’s possible that a Hispanic majority in the U.S. could conduct an “ethnic cleansing.”

Kobach made his remarks in response to a caller who asked, “What happens, if you know your history, when one culture or one race or one religion overwhelms another culture or race?”

Claiming that immigrant rights groups are “calling for the return of the Spanish territory, which could be almost half of the United States,” the caller warned, “When one race or culture overwhelms another culture, they run them out or they kill them. And it’s a bigger issue than just being Democrats. And they know in numbers, once the numbers are so bad, they can pretty much do whatever they want to do.”

Here's the Audio. Barf Bag Alert!!

Kobitch is employing projection. If what he were saying about ethnic cleansing were true, there would be no Anglo communities in Mexico or other Latin American countries when Latino people took over. On the other hand, Republicans are the ones who love to threaten and employ violence when they don't get their way.

From NY Times: GLACIER NATIONAL PARK, Mont. — What will they call this place once the glaciers are gone?

A century ago, this sweep of mountains on the Canadian border boasted some 150 ice sheets, many of them scores of feet thick, plastered across summits and tucked into rocky fissures high above parabolic valleys. Today, perhaps 25 survive.

In 30 years, there may be none.

A warming climate is melting Glacier’s glaciers, an icy retreat that promises to change not just tourists’ vistas, but also the mountains and everything around them.

I found some appropriate video.

I visited Glacier National Park in 1961. I remember my amazement at walking on glaciers in August and my awe at their number and immensity. It's a personal sorrow that most of the places, were I walked on glaciers, are now completely ice free.

Cartoon:

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