Aug 282015
 

Barring a surprise that has not been forecast, I have a whole week of sub-80°s days, and I can’t wait for the building to bleed off the heat.  Today through Sunday are minor holy days in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb.  For one evening I’ll have to give up my solidarity with the LGBT community, because on Saturday my Broncos are having a service with the 69ers, a team notorious for wise receivers and very tight ends. Winking smile The game will not be televised live here, because the networks are showing only the damn Seachickens, as usual.  I will get to see the game later, though.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:02 (average 4:19).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: In another entry in the 2016 annals of "If Trump’s doing it, me too," Ted Cruz went after Fox News host Megyn Kelly after she dared to ask him a question on whether he would deport citizen children born in the U.S. to undocumented immigrants. Nick Gass reports:

When Kelly pressed the Texas senator on what he would do as president, Cruz said that he’s “not playing the game” and declined to answer the question.

“What would President Cruz do? Do American citizen children of two illegal immigrants, who are born here, the children, get deported under a President Cruz?” Kelly asked.

Donald Trump, she said, “has answered that question explicitly.”

“Megyn, I get that that’s the question you want to ask,” Cruz said. “That’s also the question every mainstream media liberal journalist wants to ask.”

Asked whether it is an unfair question, Cruz said that it is “a distraction” from solving the issue.

“You know, it’s also the question that Barack Obama wants to focus on,” Cruz retorted.

Megyn Kelly? Mainstream?!? Liberal?!!? Bwaha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!

From NY Times: President Obama came to this once-stricken city on Thursday to make a case for his entire presidency: that when disaster strikes, the federal government should help not only to rescue the stranded but also to rebuild better and fairer than before.

“The project of rebuilding here wasn’t just to restore the city as it had been,” Mr. Obama said to several hundred people at a new community center in the once-devastated Lower Ninth Ward. “It was to build a city as it should be — a city where everyone, no matter what they look like, how much money they’ve got, where they come from, where they’re born, has a chance to make it.”

The president explicitly linked New Orleans’s recovery from Hurricane Katrina, which struck 10 years ago this month, to the nation’s recovery from the 2008 recession. “That’s the story of New Orleans, but that’s also the story of America,” he said.

Frankly, I think Obama was wrong to pay lip service to the New Orleans recovery, because the recovery aid has been unfairly targeted to whites by Republican state officials. Obama should have called them out for that.

From Media Matters: CNN political commentator Jeffrey Lord attacked Univision anchor Jorge Ramos for playing the "race card" even though he is a "blue-eyed, light-skinned … European Mexican." Lord also connected Ramos to Virginia shooter Vester Lee Flanagan II and alleged Charleston shooter Dylann Roof, claiming they all engaged in "dividing the country by race."

Ramos is an American, and every day CNN is looking more like Faux Noise Lite.

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Aug 272015
 

Because tasks here have given me a very late start, and because the news seems dominated by only two stories, I’m going to take an easy day and make this the todays only article, so I will not be sending links today on Care2.  After today we have several day’s of cool weather and forecast, and we may have something called “rain”, whatever that is.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:44 (average 4:15).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Beth Clarkson has extensively studied voting patterns in Kansas and noted several troubling statistical anomalies, ones that always benefited Republican candidates. She pressed for further transparency and was consistently rebuffed. She decided to sue Secretary of State Kris Kobach and Sedgwick County Elections Commissioner Tabitha Lehman:

While it is well-recognized that smaller, rural precincts tend to lean Republican, statisticians have been unable to explain the consistent pattern favoring Republicans that trends upward as the number of votes cast in a precinct or other voting unit goes up. In primaries, the favored candidate appears to always be the Republican establishment candidate, above a tea party challenger. And the upward trend for Republicans occurs once a voting unit reaches roughly 500 votes.

“This is not just an anomaly that occurred in one place,” Clarkson said. “It is a pattern that has occurred repeatedly in elections across the United States.”

The pattern could be voter fraud or a demographic trend that has not been picked up by extensive polling, she said.

She wants to look over the hard copies to check the error rate. You’d think in America, the heart of democracy, this would be a fairly simple request. But, no. Last night, Kris Kobach asked a judge to block the release:

In areas where Republicans control voting machines with no paper trail, such statistical anomalies are especially common nationwide, and they always favor the Republican candidate. At times, to ensure a Republican win, they even count more votes than a precinct has voters. So the reason Kobitch wants to block the release is obvious.

From Vox: America is an exceptional country when it comes to guns. It’s one of the few countries in which the right to bear arms is constitutionally protected, and presidential candidates in other nations don’t cook bacon with guns. But America’s relationship with guns is unique in another crucial way: Among developed nations, the US is far and away the most violent — in large part due to the easy access many Americans have to firearms. These charts and maps show what that violence looks like compared with the rest of the world, why it happens, and why it’s such a tough problem to fix.

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The article has 17 excellent maps and charts. I shared 1. Click through for the other 16.

From Raw Story: One of the Kentucky county clerks who is defying court orders to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples said his religious faith requires him to notify LGBT people that they’re going to Hell…

…He argued that the U.S. Supreme Court lacked the authority to overturn Kentucky laws that were approved by a majority of voters — and he said he was willing to become a martyr over this “travesty.”

“Our law says ‘one man and one woman’ and that is what I held my hand up and took an oath to and that is what I expected,” Davis said. “If it takes it, I will go to jail over — if it takes my life, I will die for because I believe I owe that to the people that fought so I can have the freedom that I have. I owe that to them today, and you do, we all do. They fought and died so we could have this freedom and I’m going to fight and die for my kids and your kids can keep it.”  [emphasis added]

If this Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian is willing to die for his assumed right to harass LGBT couples, he certainly has my permission to do so. Smile with tongue out

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Aug 252015
 

After the stresses of the last few days, I am feeling quite tired.  Tomorrow is a grocery delivery day, and I have some extra cleaning to do for that.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today's took me 3:21 (average 4:37).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: They don’t pay taxes. They circumvent our laws. They get free stuff from the government. They are America’s billionaires, and many would like to see them gone.

According to a new survey by the University of Minnesota’s Opinion Research Institute, the American people hold the nation’s billionaires in lower esteem than ever before, and a majority would like to see new laws enacted to deport them.

“They come here, take thousands of our jobs, and export them overseas,” one respondent said, in an opinion echoed by many others in the survey.

“They are part of a shadow economy that sucks billions of dollars out of the United States every year and puts it in Switzerland and the Caymans,” another said.

Images of hedge-fund managers arriving via helicopter in the Hamptons this summer have only reinforced the impression that authorities have turned a blind eye to their movements.

“Many of these people should be in prison, and the government is looking the other way,” one respondent said.

Stirring even more controversy is the billionaires’ practice of having babies in the United States and using the nation’s porous estate-tax laws to pass down untold wealth to the next generation.

“They should leave and take their children with them,” one respondent said.

At times, Andy makes a brilliant suggestion. This is one of those times. Lets start with the nevermind brothers.

From Daily Kos: "Ted Cruz Criticizes Carter Day After Wrenching Talk on Cancer," says the Bloomberg headline, and so we are obliged to take another rubbernecking glance at the most repellent man in politics.

A day after Jimmy Carter appeared on national television to talk about the cancer that's ravaging his body, Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz criticized the former president's administration in a speech in Iowa.

"I think where we are today is very, very much like the late 1970s," the senator from Texas said on the Des Moines Register's political soapbox stage at the Iowa State Fair.

"I think the parallels between this administration and the Carter administration are uncanny: same failed domestic policies, same misery, stagnation and malaise, same feckless and naïve foreign policy," Cruz said. "In fact, the exact same countries—Russia and Iran—openly laughing and mocking at the president of the United States."

Uranus Inspector could not be further from the truth. The real similarities are that Carter and Obama both are decent men, doing their best, and were sabotaged by Republicans. Republicans even made a secret deal with Iran, giving them better terms on the hostage release, in return for KEEPING OUR HOSTAGE CITIZENS CAPTIVE, so they could win the election. I think that covering up proof of which individuals committed this treason is one of the reasons that Republicans oppose the Iran deal now.

From MoveOn: If you have friends who’ve been tricked, duped, or bamboozled by the war lobby into opposing the Iran nuclear deal, share this new ad with them from our friends at Americans United for Change:

 

Please click through to share this wherever you can.

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…then buy my bridge from me!

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Aug 202015
 

At 8:00 AM the temperature outside is 64° and the forecast high is 75°.  Unfortunately  the hallways here are still in the 90°s.  It will take a couple days for the building to cool.  Today, tomorrow and Saturday are minor holy days in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb, as it’s the second week of preseason.  My Broncos’ service against Big Oil is Saturday evening, but it won’t be televised here.  I can see the service on Sunday morning.  May the blessed light of the holy Orb shine upon your team, unless you like Houston.  Winking smile I have my credit card, so I have bills to pay.  In summary, I’m pooped,

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:39 (average 5:05).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: In May, Missouri House Speaker John Diehl resigned after revelations he had a "sexually charged relationship" with a college freshman who was interning in a Missouri Capitol internship program. He was, of course, one of those "family values" conservatives.

A mere two months later, Missouri Senator Paul Levota abruptly resigned after revelations he sexually harassed two female interns.

Now the Missouri Republicans are scrambling to come up with a new internship policy. Rather than focusing on getting their own members to behave professionally with young staffers, as they would in any business setting, the Missouri GOP seems hellbent on reeling in those interns who cause so much trouble. Among their recommendations? Stricter dress codes for interns:

When Republicans commit crimes, the Party has a standard solution: blame the victims. This shows just how hypocritical so-called "Republican Family Values" are.

From The New Yorker: Eager to shore up their pro-life credentials, several Republican Presidential candidates used campaign appearances on Wednesday to assert that the babies of undocumented workers have the right to be born and then immediately deported.

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee sounded that theme in a campaign appearance in Des Moines, telling his audience, “We must vigilantly safeguard the life of the unborn, and, as soon it is no longer unborn, make sure that it leaves and takes its illegal parents with it.”

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker concurred, telling a crowd in Iowa City, “Every life is precious, and we must protect that life before marching it to the border twenty-four hours later, at the very most.”

Perhaps the most evangelical invocation of the right to life came from Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), campaigning in Cedar Rapids. “Every baby is a creation of God Almighty, and as Jesus is my savior, every baby has the right to live,” he said. “Just not here.”

Dang Andy! Considering the things thsy do say, it’s damn hard to believe that they did not actually say these things. I get they sue you for idea © violation.

From TPM: A Boston man allegedly told police that he beat and urinated on a homeless man early Wednesday because the man was Hispanic, citing real estate mogul Donald Trump’s comments on undocumented immigrants as justification for the attack.

In response, the Republican presidential candidate said that "it would be a shame" if his anti-immigrant campaign rhetoric inspired the beating. He immediately pivoted from the mild condemnation to praising his "passionate" supporters’ commitment to restoring America to greatness.

Now Hairball has an indirect victim, but he probably won’t be satisfied, until he has a famous victim, like his heroine, Bloody Bullseye Barbie, has Gabby Giffords.

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Aug 182015
 

I arose early this morning to do some cooking, before the sun came up, so I don’t have to turn on hot things on a 100°+ day.  I have some volunteer work to do, but I’m extremely tired and hope to hunker-down as soon as Store to Door calls to take my grocery order.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:18 (average 5:22).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: This man cannot be president.

I am not exaggerating what happened here.

If a mother was going to give up her child for adoption, the conservative legislature–supported and signed by one Jeb Bush– she was required to PUBLISH HER ENTIRE SEXUAL HISTORY in a major newspaper.

The idea behind it was… actually, I don’t know what the hell the idea was except to publically shame the woman.  (Publically shaming unwed mothers, by the way, is something JEB! actually loudly and proudly called on people to do.)

All I know is that it passed under our wacko bird GOP legislature.

It was called the Scarlet Letter law.

Click through for more. When it comes to misogynist "slut shaming", Strike Three is worse than Rush Limbarf.

From Common Dreams: The Nebraska chapter of the ACLU is threatening to sue one of the state’s public school districts over its invocation, for the first time in decades, of a McCarthy-era state law that requires employees to sign an oath of "love and devotion" to the United States.

Dating back to 1951, the law requires "all persons engaged in teaching in the public schools of the State of Nebraska and all other employees paid from public school funds" to sign the pledge of loyalty. The oath includes the following language (emphasis added):

I acknowledge it to be my duty to inculcate in the hearts and minds of all pupils in my care, so far as it is in my power to do, (1) an understanding of the United States Constitution and of the Constitution of Nebraska, (2) a knowledge of the history of the nation and of the sacrifices that have been made in order that it might achieve its present greatness, (3) a love and devotion to the policies and institutions that have made America the finest country in the world in which to live, and (4) opposition to all organizations and activities that would destroy our present form of government.

While on the books for over half a century, this year is the first time in recent decades that public school administrators have asked teachers to sign the pledge.

Of course it is unconstitutional, but when you stop and think about it, this thing could cut both ways. If applied literally, rather than mythically, teachers would be swearing opposition to SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD).

From Right Wing Watch: Yesterday, WorldNetDaily editor Joseph Farah wrote that he is always surprised when he gets accused “of being an apocalyptic doomsdayer” because, after all, people who believe in climate science are “the real doomsdayers in our world.”

The very same day, WorldNetDaily published an article claiming that this September will see a huge, cataclysmic event, a prediction that touched on the “blood moon” prophecy that the far-right outlet has been promoting for years. (Farah once starred in a WorldNetDaily movie about how blood moons signal the Last Days, and took offense when President Obama made a joke about Rep. Michele Bachmann’s claim that his presidency ushered in the End Times).

And just a few days ago, WorldNetDaily also posted this column, “Foreshocks of Armageddon,” which seems to contradict everything Farah just said by alleging that the Rapture and emergence of the Antichrist are just around the corner… [multiple links to World Nut Daily delinked]

What hypocrites! Earth to Republicans! Earth to Republicans!! Hello?!!? Is there anyone with a working brain in that bubble machine of yours? No? I thought not!!

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Aug 112015
 

I’m in a huge rush to get my articles written and posted in time to take a nap before going to prison to do volunteer work.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:24 (average 4:38).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Josten Bundy found himself before Judge Randall Rogers in an east Texas courtroom to face a misdemeanor charge stemming from a fight he got into with the ex-boyfriend of his girlfriend, Elizabeth Jaynes. With Elizabeth by his side, the judge asked Bundy if "she was worth it" and then put him on probation with bizarre stipulations:

“I said, well to be honest, sir, I was raised with four sisters and if any man was talking to a woman like that,” recalled Bundy,  “I’d probably do the same thing.”

Judge Rogers asked Bundy if he was married to Jaynes and then said, “You know, as a part of my probation, you’re going to have to marry her…within 30 days.”

That’s right. Judge Rogers forced the young couple to get married, which they did. Bundy was fearful the jail sentence would cost him his job and the couple had previously talked about getting married…..in the future. Judge Randall also forced Bundy to get counseling and write Bible verses.

Rogers should be defrocked and disbarred for 1st Amendment violations against Bundy and 8th Amendment violations against Janes.

From Alternet: Informed readers are well aware that US police have the dubious reputation of killing lots of civilians, compared to other countries. The War on Drugs provides much of the basis for this abomination…

…The Free Thought Project constantly reports on senseless, unjustified murders carried out by police, in the attempt to bring accountability to law enforcement run amok. Here are 10 of the most outrageous excuses police have used for killing unarmed people during the last year.

“He was walking with a purpose.” Officer Vanessa Miller killed Ryan Bollinger, 28, after witnessing him “dancing in the street” during a traffic stop. After a low-speed chase, Bollinger exited the vehicle and was “walking with a purpose” toward Miller, who then shot him from inside the car through the rolled-up window.

I’ve shared just one and ten examples of excuses made by police after they murdered innocent victims. Click through for the other nine.

From Democrats Unite: If I wrote that “Bernie Sanders admits to being a socialist,” nobody reading it would need an explanation of the word “admits.” “Socialist” is as dirty a word in US politics as “racist” or “bigot.” And for lots of voters, it’s probably even more of a deal-breaker. When a Republican really wants to insult President Obama, for example, he or she calls him a socialist.

The thing is — as the video below makes clear — America is already a socialist country, but just quietly, and only for the rich and for corporations. So the insult “socialist” only seems to really apply to things we ask the government to do for the rest of us.

 

In a word, Amen.

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This is humor.  It is NOT s suggestion to do violence against Republicans.

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Aug 022015
 

Yesterday it reached 97°.  Today will be almost as hot.  We may have a couple of temperate days Wednesday and Thursday.  I’m staying heat hunkered.  I would love to have a nice rain storm, but this Republican-climate summer appears locked in.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:06 (average 4:51).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Just a few short weeks ago, the Kochs and the Republican party were in what one Republican operative said was an "all-out war" over who would control the party going forward. The Kochs have been systematically putting a ground force in place across the nation to build their own extremely sophisticated database, one that they would allow Republican candidates to use (excepting Trump). This alarmed the RNC because all that valuable information was not being held by them. That and the whole thing about how "it’s very dangerous and wrong to allow a group of very strong, well-financed individuals who have no accountability to anyone to have control over who gets access to the data when, why and how," in the words of Katie Walsh, the RNC’s chief of staff.

But now it looks like the RNC has given up the fight.

Since then, the rhetoric has ratcheted down. Last week, i360 [the Koch data arm] and Data Trust [the RNC group] signed a deal to share data for the 2016 cycle.

"I do think there’s a value to making sure we’re all working together to ensure that we’re doing things efficiently and effectively. We appreciate everything the Kochs are doing, and it’s a huge help," Walsh told The Washington Post. "But at the end of the day, our focus is making sure that the voter file and the field staff are ready for the nominee to come in." […]

The RMC wanted to BE those “very strong, well financed individuals who have no accountability to anyone”, but now it’s official. The entire Republican Party is sucking nevermind.

From NY Times: Ken Paxton, the Republican attorney general of Texas and a former state legislator, has been indicted by a grand jury on charges of securities fraud and of failing to register with the state securities board, officials said.

The grand jury in the northern Dallas suburb of McKinney handed up a three-count indictment against Mr. Paxton on Tuesday, the officials said. The indictment is to be unsealed on Monday, when Mr. Paxton is expected to turn himself in to the authorities at the Collin County Jail.

The charges — two counts of first-degree securities fraud and one count of third-degree failure to register — are tied to Mr. Paxton’s work soliciting clients and investors for two companies while he was a member of the Texas House of Representatives, before he was elected attorney general in November.

What could be more natural for Republicans than to put one of their fellow criminals in charge of prosecuting lawbreakers.

From The Hill: President Obama is looking to cement his legacy on climate change.

His administration will finalize sweeping new regulations on power plants on Monday, which is sure to spark a fight with Republicans in Congress.

In a video released early Sunday, Obama called the plan "the biggest, most important step we’ve ever taken to combat climate change."

 

Kudos to Obama. Because this will hit the Koch Brothers right in the wallet, expect the entire Republican Party to become so frantic that a WA-A-A-A-A-Ambulance will be needed.

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