Feb 062015
 

Day 93.  I slept in, which is good.  I needed it.  This afternoon my building is having a community meeting in which management will be going over the steps they are going to start talking to help us recycle and lower our carbon footprint.  While that may see like a pain in the ass, I’m glad they care.  You folks back east had betted get ready for some nasty weather.  Although it has been unseasonably warm here, it’s been raining nonstop for over a day and is forecast to continue for two – three more.  When that mixes from cold air out of Canada, watch out!!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today;s took me 2:59 (average 4:14).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Florida Attorney Steve Medina has been working on a case, pro bono, to expose the environmental corruption which has been taking place in Tallahassee and Putnam County, Florida.

Tons of toxic waste is being dumped into St. Johns River, daily, by the Koch Brothers company, Georgia-Pacific. Aspects of the deal allowing Georgia Pacific to massively assault the environment, were misleading, sometimes illegal, and unbeknownst to the local citizens. Florida Governor Rick Scott and former Governor (and Republican presidential hopeful), Jeb Bush, are also involved.

Click through for the dirty details. Those four are peas in a pod.

From Reuters: A senior Israeli official suggested on Friday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had been misled into thinking an invitation to address the U.S. Congress on Iran next month was fully supported by the Democrats.

Netanyahu was invited by the Republican speaker of the house, John Boehner, to address Congress on March 3, an invitation Boehner originally described as bipartisan.

The move angered the White House, which is upset about the event coming two weeks before Israeli elections and the fact that Netanyahu, who has a testy relationship with President Obama, is expected to be critical of U.S. policy on Iran.

I don’t doubt that Agent Orange lied. After all, his mouth was open, and there was no inflow of whiskey. However, if Butcher Ben were truly concerned, he would cancel the trip. He says he has no such plans.

From Right Wing Watch: Creationist leader Ken Ham is incensed that the state of Kentucky is supposedly abridging his organization’s “fundamental rights” by declining to provide around $18 million in tax incentives to his Noah’s Ark theme park. The park is a planned addition to Ham’s Creation Museum and is intended to be, according to Ham, “one of the greatest evangelist outreaches of our day.”

Since Ham’s group plans to discriminate on the basis of religion in its hiring practices, it is no surprise that it won’t get public funds. But Ham claims that he has a “right” to receive taxpayer money and has filed a lawsuit [pseudo-Christians delinked] against Kentucky, insisting that his organization, Answers in Genesis, is the real victim of discrimination.

He took his case to “Washington Watch” [pseudo-Christians delinked] yesterday, where he told host Tony Perkins that Kentucky’s decision somehow violates his organization’s right to the freedom of speech: “Anyone who wants to have freedom of speech in this nation, freedom of religion, free exercise of religion, needs to stand with us as we do this because that is what we are standing for.”

In short this Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian is saying that failure to fund his attempt to proselytize others in a manner that violates the US Constitution violates his freedom of speech and freedom of religion. He is free to spread the Republican gospel of greed, lies and hate to his heart’s content, and I defend his right to do so. But, if government pays for it, that violates our rights.

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Feb 012015
 

Day 88.  I’m rushing to get my articles written and posted before services begin on this highest holy day in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb.  Your sacrament will be served by Chickens and Cheats.  I’ve already collected all the data I’ll needed for tomorrow’s Monthly Report, so I’ve been working my kitty butt off all morning.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:18 (average 5:41).  To do it click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: “If I could conceive that the general government might ever be so administered as to render the liberty of conscience insecure, I beg you will be persuaded, that no one would be more zealous than myself to establish effectual barriers against the horrors of spiritual tyranny, and every species of religious persecution.”

- George Washington, letter to the United Baptist Chamber of Virginia (1789)

This is just one statement by one of our founding fathers that contradicts the lies we hear from Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians, as they attempt to overcome the separation of church and state out founding father had the wisdom to incorporate into our Bill of Rights. Click through for a bunch more.

From NY Times: If this state had an official color, it would most certainly be red. Football fans here don scarlet sweatshirts each game day, red meat is a dietary staple and, for decades, Republican presidential candidates filled Nebraska’s borders on the electoral map with their party’s hue.

But in 2008, a Nebraska quirk injected a drop of blue into that sea of red, in the form of a single, lonely electoral vote for the Democratic presidential candidate.

Nebraska is one of just two states, along with Maine, that do not award all their electoral voters to the statewide winner. And that meant that in 2008, Barack Obama picked up an electoral vote from the congressional district around Omaha, even as Senator John McCain trounced him across the rest of the state.

One electoral vote — out of five in Nebraska and 538 nationally — might seem trivial, but Republicans do not see it that way. It was the first time since Lyndon B. Johnson beat Barry Goldwater in 1964, when Mr. Obama was a toddler, that the state awarded any votes to a Democrat.

So this year, a longstanding proposal to change the state’s Electoral College system to winner-take-all may finally reach the Republican governor’s desk, amid a renewed push by conservative lawmakers hoping to have new rules in place for the 2016 presidential election.

I don’t have a problem with this, but I will point out the hypocrisy that in states like California that are blue in Presidential elections, Republicans are trying to do the exact opposite and split the electoral delegation.  I prefer it not be split, because split delegations would allow Republicans to Gerrymander the electoral college.

From LA Times: TransCanada Corp., the Canadian company behind the Keystone XL pipeline, filed eminent domain proceedings against an estimated 90 Nebraska landowners Tuesday to secure the right to build the controversial project across their property.

How impolite of them!! We need to build a border fence to defend ourselves from these illegal TransCanada immigrants, until Canadians defeat Harper, and Canuckistan becomes Canada again. ;-)

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Jan 292015
 

It’s day 85, and it’s turning into a very busy day.  I am not a fan or supporter of Comcast, but for my building, I have two choices for broadband, that or my current provider Clear.  Clear has been purchased by Sprint, and they just raised their prices.  In addition, their service has dropped off.  I used to get 7 Megabits consistently, and now I’m getting 5 on a good day.  As much as I hate to do it, I can actually save money with Comcast and get 120 Megabit service.  I’m waiting for the installer to come.  That means that two of my five main email addresses will change, and I’ll have to inform a lot of suppliers.

It’s in.  Damn it’s fast!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 5:09 (average 5:34).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: The "Anti-Commandeering" Rule: In 1997, by a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court, created an "anti-commandeering" rule, which bans Congress from ordering state officials to carry out federal duties. The case was brought by two county sheriffs, who did not want to do background checks for firearm sales as ordered by the Brady Act. The new rule led to holes in the database that would allow persons prone to violence, like the killer in the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting, to get firearms. Stevens notes that the "anti-commandeering" rule could also cripple other Congressional acts, from routine administration of federal programs to emergency responses to national catastrophes or acts of terror. His fix adds four words (in bold below) to the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause:

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges and other public officials in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

This is just one of six proposed Constitutional Amendments written by retired Supreme Court Justice, John Paul Stevens, to help fix the damage done to America by the Fascist Five Republican Injustices of SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD). Click through for the other five.

From The New Yorker: In a historic Oval Office ceremony on Thursday morning, President Barack Obama signed an executive order closing Congress, effective immediately.

The President said that the move would dramatically increase the efficiency of the federal government, noting how much he had accomplished since he stopped working with Congress in November.

Additionally, he said, the elimination of Congress would result in annual savings of more than five billion dollars, which Obama said would be refunded to American taxpayers.

Acknowledging that “some sticklers” would argue that the Constitution calls for three branches of government, the President said, “All this order does is reduce that number by one.”

The initial public reaction to the President’s decision appeared to be overwhelmingly positive, as news of the executive order sent his approval rating soaring to seventy-nine percent.

Bad, Andy!! Bad!! How dare you tease us with such a beautiful idea?!!?

From NBC: U.S. regulators on Thursday raised the standard for high-speed Internet, voting that only connections with download speeds of 25 megabits per second or faster will qualify as broadband. The Federal Communications Commission’s previous definition of broadband was a download speed of at least 4 Mbps. The change, opposed by Internet service providers and Republican FCC commissioners, means nearly a fifth of Americans and more than half of those living in rural areas now lack access to high-speed Internet. The change is not expected to immediately influence how competitive the FCC formally views the broadband market. But it could give the agency more of a bully pulpit to push Internet service providers to increase connection speeds and support competitors formed by municipalities.

Excellent idea.  This article is what set me off.

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Jan 212015
 

The Republican Party have been yard at work undermining over a century’s progress toward ensuring basic Constitutional rights to all Americans.  They have attacked the rights of racial minorities, women, LGTP people, seniors, students, and more.  Few have been more helpful in this regard than the Fascist Five Injustices of SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD).  Here they go again!

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Two days after celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s birth, the Supreme Court will consider weakening a federal housing discrimination law passed in the wake of his death.

The showdown over the Fair Housing Act of 1968 has been anticipated for several years — eagerly by conservatives who say the law has gone too far, anxiously by civil rights groups who fear it will be rolled back.

The facts of the case — involving a decision by Dallas officials to make most federal low-income housing vouchers available in poor, minority neighborhoods — are less important than the potential nationwide impact. If the court rules as expected, housing discrimination cases would be tougher to win from coast to coast.

Two earlier housing discrimination lawsuits from Minnesota and New Jersey were withdrawn or settled just before reaching the high court — in one case at the urging of the Obama administration, which is aligned with the civil rights community. They fear what most court-watchers predict: that five justices are poised to weaken the law, just as they did the Voting Rights Act in 2013…

Inserted from <USA Today>

Rachel Maddow put the story in context.

I fully agree with Rachel’s analysis. The Fascist Five Republican Injustices of SCROTUS went out of their way to hear this case, because they want to gut civil rights protections.  Bye Bye Fair Housing!

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Oct 092014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 171.  Store to Door is coming with groceries, and I have lots of cleaning to do to prepare.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:44 (average 5:28).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: An Ohio man has become infected with misinformation about the Ebola virus through casual contact with cable news, the Centers for Disease Control has confirmed.

Tracy Klugian, thirty-one, briefly came into contact with alarmist Ebola hearsay during a visit to the Akron-Canton airport, where a CNN report about Ebola was showing on one of the televisions in the airport bar. “Mr. Klugian is believed to have been exposed to cable news for no more than ten minutes, but long enough to become infected,” a spokesman for the C.D.C. said. “Within an hour, he was showing signs of believing that an Ebola outbreak in the United States was inevitable and unstoppable.”

Once Klugian’s condition was apparent, the Ohio man was rushed to a public library and given a seventh-grade biology textbook, at which point he “started to stabilize,” the spokesman said.

Andy has a point. It’s a good thing the man was not exposed to the Republican Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise. His brain would not have survived long enough to reach the library emergency room.

From Daily Kos: Ellen Bogan was rolling down U.S. 27 in Union County, Indiana when she was pulled over for a traffic violation. The state trooper let her off with a warning, but not before asking some bizarrely unprofessional questions:

Did she have a home church?

Did she accept Jesus Christ as her savior?

Ellen said she felt helpless to leave the traffic stop, even after the warning had been issued:

"The police officer is representing the government … so that means, as a representative, this person, while on duty, while engaged in official action, is basically overstepping and is trying to establish religion."

Bogan, who lives in Huntington, said Hamilton asked her about her faith multiple times during the traffic stop. Because he was a trooper and his police car was still parked behind hers, she said she felt she could not leave or refuse questioning.

"The whole time, his lights were on," Bogan said. "I had no reason to believe I could just pull away at that point, even though I had my warning."

This Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian abused his authority, violated her Constitutional rights, and should be criminally indicted and blacklisted from service as a police officer everywhere.

From NY Times: Just weeks before elections that will decide control of the Senate and crucial governors’ races, a cascade of court rulings about voting rules, issued by judges with an increasingly partisan edge, are sowing confusion and changing voting procedures with the potential to affect outcomes in some states.

Last week, a day before voting was scheduled to begin in Ohio, the United States Supreme Court split, 5 to 4, to uphold a cut in early voting in the state by one week; the five Republican appointees voted in favor and the four Democratic appointees against. Cases from North Carolina and Wisconsin are also before the court, with decisions expected shortly, while others are proceeding in Texas and Arkansas.

The legal fights are over laws that Republican-led state governments passed in recent years to more tightly regulate voting, in the name of preventing fraud.

Since virtually all actual documented cases of so-called voter fraud have been Republicans getting caught while trying to prove they could get away with it, it is clear that the Republican courts, especially SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) are helping their fellow fascists. Note how the Fascist Five Injustices used the Gay Marriage non-decision to distract us from their efforts to help the Republican Party steal elections. Get Out the VOTE!!

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Oct 042014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 166.  I’m pretty tired, because I had to be up early for an O2 delivery.  After it came, I took an hour break and sat outside in the sun.  Before long the webbing between my toes will grow back for the Oregon winter, and I’ll forget what the sun is.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:55 (average 4:58).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: …Dear white racists and your fragile fee-fees:

Relax, I’m white, too. Look, I can do the secret handshake and nudge-nudge, wink-wink. Lemme whitesplain something to you, fellow white men: no one buys your bullshit.

That’s because your bullshit runs like this: For historically- and presently-oppressed black people to be treated decently, they must carefully avoid doing anything that could be remotely twisted into behaving like a white racist, even if you’re squinting and looking at it from five hundred meters away in a thick fog. Because that would be racist, and therefore hypocritical, and if that’s the case, they deserve to continue to be oppressed.

Here’s the thing you thick-headed assholes totally fail to get: NO ONE DESERVES TO BE OPPRESSED, PERIOD. You can talk all you want about how it’s okay for black people to be mistreated if— but get this, there is no "if". It’s not okay, ever. That’s why we call it mistreatment. Your error is to think that it’s ever justified, and your active misdeed is to constantly search for a justification. Black people, collectively, are not guilty of anything. In fact, a basic principle of civil society is that we reject the notion of collective guilt.

Some individual black people, like individual white people, have done bad things, and in those cases, may deserve judicial punishments. But even those people don’t deserve mistreatment from some random white guy on the street. And black people in general don’t owe anyone anything as a prerequisite for being treated decently. No one does…

Click Through for the rest of this excellent piece, which should begin, "Dear Republicans."

From NY Times: The Supreme Court on Thursday added 11 cases to its docket, including ones on redistricting, judicial elections and discrimination in housing and employment.

The court, which will return to the bench on Monday, took no action on seven petitions urging it to hear cases on same-sex marriage. The cases it did agree to hear will be argued this winter and are likely to be decided by the end of June.

The court will continue to add cases in coming weeks and remains likely to accept one or more same-sex marriage cases.

Click through for more info on the cases that SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) have decided to here. They will have ample opportunities to further undermine the Constitution, democracy and human rights.

From Bill Moyers: We’re still posting a new chart on the current state of income inequality every day over the next week. Yesterday’s looked at how the top 1 percent of Americans have captured half of all income.

Today, let’s talk taxes. In the past few years, we’ve heard a lot about overtaxed “job creators” and freeloading “takers.” But consider this: As the income rates for the wealthiest have plunged, their incomes have shot up.

1004happy-returns

You can’t argue with those numbers. We need all three branches of government to BEGIN to undo the damage, and 2016 has all the earmarks of being a banner year. But first, we need to survive 2014. Get out the VOTE!!

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I was nine at the time, but I knew to be afraid from the way my family and neighbors reacted to the news.

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Aug 192014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 120.  My COPD is still severe, and I have pain in my lower back.  I’m hoping against hope that it isn’t another kidney stone.  Just in case, I’m super-hydrating.  (That worked)

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:01 (average 4:24).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: Last week’s indictment of Texas Governor Rick Perry has sparked widespread bipartisan support for the concept of sending politicians to prison for ninety-nine years.

While Americans are divided about the merits of the specific charges levelled against Perry, there is near-unanimous agreement that imprisoning politicians for ninety-nine years is an idea worth exploring further, a poll released on Monday indicates.

According to the poll, eighty-seven per cent of voters from both parties agreed that sending politicians to prison for such a lengthy period would “solve a lot of problems” and “make the country safer.”

LOL Andy. Welcome back! I frequently tell my guys in prison that they made a bad career choice, when the did not opt to be elected criminals, as opposed to convicted ones.

From Vox: Missouri Governor Jay Nixon on Monday ordered the state’s National Guard to Ferguson to help contain rising tensions and violence over the shooting of unarmed black teen Michael Brown.

The announcement came after the St. Louis suburb endured another night of violence as several agitators, whom Brown’s family and other protest leaders condemned, engaged in shootings, hurled Molotov cocktails, and vandalized various businesses. Security officials reported at least three injuries, although none were police officers.

"These violent acts are a disservice to the family of Michael Brown and his memory"

"Tonight, a day of hope, prayers, and peaceful protests was marred by the violent criminal acts of an organized and growing number of individuals, many from outside the community and state, whose actions are putting the residents and businesses of Ferguson at risk," Nixon said in a statement. "These violent acts are a disservice to the family of Michael Brown and his memory, and to the people of this community who yearn for justice to be served, and to feel safe in their own homes."

A lot of people don’t realize what’s really going on here. We are dealing with two distinct groups. First there are protestors. They are essentially peaceful, and we were moving rapidly toward a resolution, thanks to State Police Captain Ron Johnson, until they were enraged by incendiary statements from the Ferguson Police Chief and the St. Louis County DA, who sabotaged an improving situation. I think that was intentional, and intended to provoke violence to distract from the criminal behavior by police.  The protestors are so angry that they refuse to disband. Second, there are the looters and anarchists. Virtually all of them are not local. They do not care about the issues the demonstrators care about. They are there to commit crimes. I only hope that the National Guard will respond to each group separately and appropriately. My own experience with the Guard in the 1960s has stained the streets of several Eastern and Midwest cities with my blood, as I demonstrated peacefully, so my hope is not high.

From Right Wing Watch: This, weekend Christian Post blogger Michael Bresciani pointed out [pseudo-Christian delinked] the real culprit for terrorist attacks: gay people.

Bresciani writes that LGBT “perversion” is bringing the world “in danger of judgment” and, in fact, “these judgments have already begun and terrorism is part of it.”

Bresciani adds that evolution and the separation of church and state, which he claims is the invention of Satan, are also responsible for inciting divine punishment.

Simply put, this Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian is claiming that God is punishing us all, because we don’t hate gay people, believe pseudo-science and allow the unconstitutional choice of Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christianity as the state religion.

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