Oct 152014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 177.  Today is a Prison Volunteer day, so I’m writing early in the morning to complete my articles before I leave.  I’ll be returning home late this evening and will have missed sleep time.  The plan is to crash when I get home and upload the articles whenever I wake up, but since tomorrow is a grocery delivery day, don’t be surprised if I have nothing for Thursday.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:06 (average 5:04).  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:

6Scores

Standings:

6Standings

I got Sasquatched in the last minute of the last game. :-(

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: But looking back at all Republicans have done, they seem to have achieved one goal really well: convince Americans making just enough that if only those with not enough had less, they’d be doing much better. Put another way, they’ve trained a certain segment of the population to kick downwards. Instead of looking at a system that makes it difficult to survive, instead of looking at the portion of the population that keeps getting richer and richer, instead of looking at how many hundreds and even thousands of times those above them make than everyone else…they look at the people just below them, getting poorer and poorer. Republicans have instilled such a level of contempt in people for unskilled laborers and the poor, that they do the work of justifying paying them less than enough to survive for the party.

Bear in mind, we’re not talking about people who don’t work; we’re not talking about people who earn a lousy living, but a living. We’re talking about people who work hard, and do not earn enough for the basic necessities. And as far as Republicans are concerned, this is good enough: the unskilled laborer’s comfort, standard-of-life, independence, self-respect, health and ultimately life are worthy of only disdain. He is a failure by virtue of being unskilled, and as such deserves contempt. A cheap Big Mac is more important than the person making it being able to afford to pay his rent and put food on the table after working 40 hours a week.

This article does an excellent job of going on to explain how Republicans use lies to convince fools to act and vote against their own interest. Click through for the rest.

From NY Times: Against a backdrop of growing impatience across Europe with Israeli policy, Britain’s Parliament overwhelmingly passed a nonbinding resolution Monday night to give diplomatic recognition to a Palestinian state. The vote was a symbolic but potent indication of how public opinion has shifted since the breakdown of American-sponsored peace negotiations and the conflict in Gaza this summer.

Though the outcome of the 274-to-12 parliamentary vote was not binding on the British government, the debate was the latest evidence of how support for Israeli policies, even among staunch allies of Israel, is giving way to more calibrated positions and in some cases frustrated expressions of opposition to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s stance toward the Palestinians.

Kudos to the UK for calling out Butcher Ben. I bet our own Pat A had something to do with this. :-)

From Upworthy: So, yeah. Beer is kind of amazing.

 

This video got me wondering why all that beer consumption did not spur any evolution in Bubba Bagger, who continues his devolution toward the swamp. Then it hit me, just like yeast is the ingredient needed to make beer, Bubba has a missing ingredient. Brain cells. ;-)

Cartoon:

1015Cartoon

Vintage 10/2011

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Oct 122014
 

Last night I saw a Care2 Article by Cal.  Since the pink ribbons started polluting US charity again, I’ve been considering a repost of an article I wrote 2 1/2 years ago, and seeing Cal’s lit the fire.  Thanks Cal.  It’s important how Komen’s political duplicity disqualifies them as an authentic charity.  I originally published the following on 2/3/2012.

The decision to defund Planned Parenthood by Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure is especially hurtful to poor women, who have no health services other than Planned Parenthood.  I am convinced that they are not being honest about their claimed reason, and that their real reason is to support the ongoing Republican vendetta against Planned Parenthood.  I fully support aid for breast cancer screenings for women, and am happy to tell you that there is a way we can support breast cancer screenings for all women, but leave the Komen foundation to their political intrigues.

3komen

Tuesday's news that Susan G. Komen for the Cure is ending funding it provided to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screenings has led to increased scrutiny of Komen's staff, which—as I reported previously—includes a federal lobbyist who pledged to defund Planned Parenthood while campaigning for governor of Georgia.

Komen's founder is pretty conservative, too. Komen CEO Nancy G. Brinker, who founded the foundation in memory of a sister who died from breast cancer, was the chief protocol officer for the United States from 2007 to 2009 under the George W. Bush administration, and before that served as his ambassador to Hungary.

Brinker is also a major Republican donor, and has given more than $175,000 to Republican candidates and the Republican National Committee since 1990, according to donor data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics. Her late husband, Norman Brinker, was the chairman of Brinker International Restaurants, which owns the chains Chili's, Maggiano's, and Macaroni Grill. Norman Brinker gave more than $440,000 to Republicans between 1990 and his death in 2009

Inserted from <Mother Jones>

Komen’s supposed reason for this is that Planned Parenthood is under a Congressional investigation, and they do not fund organizations under investigation, they say.  Well that investigation was called by one lone congressman, Cliff Stearns (R-FL).  He has done nothing to follow it up.  Furthermore, Penn State is involved in a serious criminal investigation, but Komen still funds Penn State’s Hershey Medical Center.  That’s why I discount their claim.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) criticized Komen on the House floor.

3plannedparenthoodspending

97% of what Planned Parenthood does has nothing whatsoever to do with abortion, but if you oppose abortion, the contraception that Planned Parenthood provides prevents dozens of abortions every day.  I wanted to help.  I spoke to Charles Nilme at the Columbia Willamette office of Planned Parenthood, here in Portland, and donated $20.  That’s a tiny donation, but I’m quite poor.  I asked Charles, if I could target that donation to breast cancer screening, and he told me that I could.

Therefore, we all can support breast cancer screening for women without contributing to Komen’s agenda that opposes women’s rights.  We can donate to Planned Parenthood directly and tell them how we want it used.  I did, and I hope you will too.  You can donate online to Planned Parenthood, or get the telephone number of your local center there.

Rachel Maddow interviewed Congresswoman Diana DeGette on this topic.  Let me leave you with their thoughts.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

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Oct 112014
 

Everywhere you turn you hear bad news about the economy.  According to conventional wisdom, we are spending like there is no tomorrow and running up record budget deficits.  In the process, we arwe destroying the economy.  Is this true?  What’s really going on?  Shhhh!  It’s a secret!

1011Deficit

What if they balanced the budget and nobody knew or cared?

O.K., the federal budget hasn’t actually been balanced. But the Congressional Budget Office has tallied up the totals for fiscal 2014, which ran through the end of September, and reports that the deficit plunge of the past several years continues. You still hear politicians ranting about “trillion dollar deficits,” but last year’s deficit was less than half-a-trillion dollars — or, a more meaningful number, just 2.8 percent of G.D.P. — and it’s still falling.

So where are the ticker-tape parades? For that matter, where are the front-page news reports? After all, talk about the evils of deficits and the grave fiscal danger facing America dominated Washington for years. Shouldn’t we be making a big deal of the fact that the alleged crisis is over?

Well, we aren’t, and once you understand why, you also understand what fiscal hysteria was really about.

First, ordinary Americans aren’t celebrating the deficit’s decline because they don’t know about it… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

Click thr4ough to read how Paul Krugman continues to explain how the media focuses on bad news and ignores good news.  Of course that’s true. If it bleeds, it leads.  However, another dynamic is at work here., as Rachel Maddox explains.

Naturally!  The media is parroting Republican lies!  But part of the fault lies with Democrats.  Those of you who also worship the Holy Ellipsoid Orb are familiar with the Iggy Shuffle and other End Zone Celebrations.  Here’s what I mean.

Democrats need Bodacious Barack, Hot Stuff Harry, and Fancy Nancy to get together, spike the ball, and do a good old fashioned end zone dance.  Republicans have us outclassed at this.  They blow their own horn to claim that their most egregious failures are spectacular successes, while we actually have successes and keep quite.

It’s been a secret too long.

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Oct 112014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 173.  I spent the entire morning researching, and doing paperwork in for my prison volunteer work.  I did take a half hour off to bask in the sun, although there was not much.  If I play this right, I’ll have time for a nap.  If not, I’ll be playing roulette with a keyboard face plant.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:23 (average 5:02).  To do it click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Media Matters: Fox News used doctored video of an interview with President Obama to claim his description of briefings he received on the night of the Benghazi attack contrasts with former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s. In reality, their accounts are consistent.

Panetta discussed the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi during a September 7 interview [Faux Noise delinked] with Fox News host Bill O’Reilly. The Factor — and subsequently the October 8 edition of Fox & Friends — exploited the interview to revive the debunked claim that Obama didn’t describe the Benghazi attacks as terrorism and conclude "the administration did not want to talk about terror." To make their point, each program featured a clip of the president’s interview with O’Reilly in February in which the Fox host asked the president about the "terror" designation. The clip egregiously omits Obama’s response to the dialogue, in which the president explicitly says, "When somebody is attacking our compound … that’s an act of terror, which is how I characterized it the day after it happened."

Barf Bag Alert!!

 

Brain-washed sheeple have a warped view of this issue, because what Obama REALLY said landed on the cutting room floor of the Republican Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise.

From Daily Kos: There are good cops and then there is an unknown NYPD officer who blatantly robs a man at his birthday party:

Lamard Joye was celebrating his 35th birthday with friends last month near a basketball court in Coney Island, Brooklyn. At some point, the police arrived and stopped a friend of his.

From several feet away, Mr. Joye objected. What happened next is now under investigation by the Brooklyn district attorney’s office, which is in possession of a cellphone video of the ensuing confrontation.

The video of the encounter, on Sept. 16 at around 12:20 a.m., shows a police officer steering Mr. Joye against a chain-link fence to pat him down. “Look,” Mr. Joye says. “Look, you see this? Look.” The police officer reaches into Mr. Joye’s pocket, removes what appears to be a folded stack of bills and steps back.

 

This is no the video with the article. That could not be embedded, but this video is enhanced. This proves that Brooklyn has at least one Republican.

From The New Yorker: As the mystery surrounding the absence of dictator Kim Jong-un deepens, the North Korean government on Wednesday issued an official statement reassuring its citizens that it had “a deep bench of brutal madmen.”

While it offered no comment about the status of Kim, the statement from the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) emphasized that “making North Korea an authoritarian horror-drome is not the achievement of one man; it has been and will always be a team effort.”

Andy should tell them not to worry. Our Republican Party can lend them dozens of experienced leaders, who are just as brutal, and just as crazy.

Cartoon:

1011Cartoon

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Oct 072014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 169.  I took the regular bus to my Cat Scan.  Since I was actually there less than half an hour, the upside is that it took me 3 – 4 hours less than the Lift Bus would have.  The downside is that I had to walk about 1.75 miles in places where there was no shade.  I took water, but I’m quite worn out.  Fortunately I did research before I left, so you get a full Open Thread.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:03 (average 4:59),  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From NY Times: In its campaign across northern Syria and Iraq, the jihadist group Islamic State has been using ammunition from the United States and other countries that have been supporting the regional security forces fighting the group, according to new field data gathered by a private arms-tracking organization.

The data, part of a larger sample of captured arms and cartridges in Syria and Iraq, carries an implicit warning for policy makers and advocates of intervention.

It suggests that ammunition transferred into Syria and Iraq to help stabilize governments has instead passed from the governments to the jihadists, helping to fuel the Islamic State’s rise and persistent combat power. Rifle cartridges from the United States, the sample shows, have played a significant role.

I’ve heard many ask, of late, why we don’t just give weapons to the people fighting ISIL and let them deal with it. This is the reason.

From Think Progress: New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R) argued on Sunday that President Obama has declared war against ISIS in Iraq and Syria in order to help Democrats win the midterm elections in November and expressed concern that he would abandon the fight in the new year.

Is that a load of RS (fouler than BS) or what? Throughout his presidency, Obama has been more willing to use military force than most anticipated.

From Right Wing Watch:

Last month, a number of Americans joined anti-gay and anti-abortion-rights activists from around the world at a Kremlin-backed conference on “Large Families and the Future of Humanity” in Moscow. The conference was originally organized under the name of the Illinois-based World Congress of Families, but WCF “suspended” its planning of the event after Russia seized part of Ukraine…then the event went ahead as planned with only nominal changes. Two WCF officials, Don Feder and Larry Jacobs, attended the conference officially in their personal capacities, and Feder gave a speech on how the sexual revolution will make the human race extinct.

Despite doing it on the sneak, Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians are still offering fool support for Vladimir "GOP Pootie" Putin (R-RU) in his Republican campaign of hatred against gay people.  This is also sedition.

Cartoon:

1007CartoonTCCatScan

For a mere four bits…
I’ll sniff your nose and your toes…
I’ll sniff your eye and your thigh…
I’ll sniff your lip and your hip…

Where else can you get such a thorough Cat Scan for fifty cents?

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Oct 032014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 165.  I’m about to leave for my physical, and will finish filling out this section after I return, so you can have more than just a Personal Update.

All things considered, except for Lady Vampira’s drilling, the trip was pretty painless.  Nevertheless, I’m feeling quite tired and am ready for some extra sleep.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:49 (average 4:24).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: This clip of Rep. Cory Gardner from from Denver’s KDVR TV is nothing short of amazing because he spends nearly two minutes trying to claim that legislation that he co-sponsored—the federal personhood bill—does not exist:

In the video, Gardner repeatedly claims that "there is no such thing as a federal personhood bill" when KDVR’s Eli Stokols asks him to explain why he was willing to flip-flop on his support for Colorado’s personhood measure but not the federal bill.

It’s a convenient answer for Gardner because by denying the existence of federal personhood legislation, he doesn’t have to explain why he supports it while claiming to oppose a state-level measure that does the same thing. The only problem is that it’s a transparently and utterly ridiculous claim.

Barf Bag Alert!

 

I’m amazes this was aired at a local Fox station. No way would it have ever been shown on the Republican Reichsministry of propaganda, Faux Noise. This Republican is doing what Republicans virtually always do when called to account for his verifiable behavior. He is lying.

From The New Yorker: Iraq’s new Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, has cancelled a scheduled visit to the White House, citing “concerns about the security situation there.”

Speaking to reporters in Baghdad on Wednesday, Abadi said that he had been looking forward to visiting the White House but that recent reports had “given me the willies.”

“They really need to get on top of things there,” he said. “Until they do, I’m better off staying in Iraq.”…

Can you blame him, Andy? The White House just isn’t a safe place to visit, let alone live there.

From TPM: Nate Silver acknowledged that he was doing something a little unusual in a Sept. 17 blog post when he called out fellow forecaster Sam Wang of Princeton University. But it also appears to have been the culmination of a long-simmering — if largely under-the-radar — feud.

"I don’t like to call out other forecasters by name unless I have something positive to say about them — and we think most of the other models out there are pretty great," Silver wrote. But he then labeled Wang’s model "wrong" and provided a detailed argument (with footnotes) to explain why he thought so.

And it didn’t stop there. Periodically over the last week or so, Silver has continued to take shots on Twitter at Wang’s forecasting model, which has consistently been more optimistic about Democratic odds of keeping the Senate than Silver’s (or any other forecaster).

I doubt that Silver would be taking such umbrage, if Wang’s model had not outperformed his own in the last three national elections.

Cartoon:

1003CartoonTCA1C

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Sep 232014
 

Every week, Republicans join a competition to see who can say the most outlandish things, and in the process, every week they push the envelope on just how totally vile InsaniTEA can become.  I trust that you will believe it, when I tell you that last week was no exception.

John Boehner: The unemployed are just sitting around, not wanting to work.

BoehnerLiarThe House Speaker expressed his deeply thought out views about the unemployed this week during a speech to the American Enterprise Institute. They’re lazy bums, he said, in a nutshell. And yeah, it’s Obama’s fault. Boehner’s words:

“This idea that has been born, maybe out of the economy over the last couple years, that you know, I really don’t have to work. I don’t really want to do this. I think I’d rather just sit around.”

That last bit is where Boehner is channeling unemployed people’s thoughts.

He then held himself up as a shining example of someone who always worked so hard, but this was back when hard work was valued in America: “If you wanted something you worked for it,” Boehner said. “Trust me, I did it all.”

Where oh where is John Boehner of tomorrow? Is he sitting on his couch thinking, nah, I don’t feel like working.

Question: Does John Boehner know any unemployed people? Where is he getting this pseudo-insight? How is he getting inside their heads and reading their thoughts?

Answer: He doesn’t. And he can’t…

Inserted from <AlterNet>

Note that this is the very same John “Agent Orange” Boehner that just packed up the Congress, that was already setting records for fewest days worked, and took the entire month of October off.  This is just the very least offensive one of five totally vile Republican moments from last week alone.  Click through for the other four.

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