Oct 242014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 186.  I’m rushing to get this finished before I leave for my volunteer work in prison.

The Victims Impact meeting went very well, and my presentation was well received.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:05 (average 4:48).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

1023-Broncos35-Chargers21

As penance for missing it, I must say 513 Hail Peytons. :-)

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Republican Gov. John Kasich got a lot of attention on Monday for acknowledging reality when he said that Obamacare repeal is "not gonna happen." Then he went even deeper, saying that the "political or ideological" opposition to Obamacare—and, in particular, Medicaid expansion—doesn’t "hold water against real flesh and blood, and real improvements in people’s lives." Two thoughts spring to mind reading that. Either John Kasich has given up any presidential aspirations or Kasich is seeing a shift in his party away from Obamacare insanity.

As it turns out, it’s neither of those things, because Kasich immediately "clarified" his position.

"I don’t back Obamacare. I never have. I want it to be repealed," he told The Washington Post in a telephone interview. "If the House and the Senate [are Republican-controlled] and we have a Republican president, Obamacare will be repealed flat out. Flat out. And it will be replaced."

So much for "real improvements in people’s lives." But that’s not the best part. He goes full McConnell in his backtracking talk with Politico.

Even when one acknowledges the need to feign sanity, the need to suck … nevermind … for money requires that they goosestep first.

From NY Times: Four former Blackwater Worldwide security guards were convicted and immediately jailed Wednesday for their roles in a deadly 2007 shooting in Baghdad’s Nisour Square that marked a bloody nadir in America’s war in Iraq.

A jury in Federal District Court found that the deaths of 17 Iraqis in the shooting, which began when a convoy of the guards suddenly began firing in a crowded intersection, was not a battlefield tragedy, but the result of a criminal act.

The justice here, although commendable, is incomplete, as long as the company exists in any form. Because it became known as the Republican Gestapo, it changed it’s name to Xe and then to Academi. as it remains as part of Constellis Holdings.

From Upworthy:

She’s already America’s sweetheart, and now she’s won an award for her anti-bullying work. As someone who was bullied herself, Julia Roberts can really relate to the teens she works with.

 

Kudos to Julia. And she’s right. It’s wrong to stand by and do nothing. But even worse, the Republican Party demands that bullying LGBT people is part of their right to religious expression.  How hateful!

Cartoon:

1024Cartoon

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Oct 232014
 

Republicans refuse to accept the inevitable when they have lost on an issue.  This is especially true of bigoted hate mongers.  Now the issue of whether a state may nullify a federal law was decided in the civil war.  Now North Carolina wants to extend the power to nullify to individual government employees.

1023gay-hate-signSince marriage equality’s arrival in North Carolina this month, at least two magistrates have resigned from their roles in the state judicial system to avoid having to officiate marriages for same-sex couples. This week, Senate Leader Phil Berger (R) said he will introduce legislation that allows officiants [sic] to refuse to perform marriages that violate their religious beliefs.

According to Berger, who is continuing to fight the marriage equality ruling with House Speaker and Senate candidate Thom Tillis (R), “The court’s expansion of the freedoms of some should not violate the well-recognized constitutional rights of others.” He doesn’t believe complying with marriage equality should “require our state employees to compromise their core religious beliefs and First Amendment rights in order to protect their livelihoods.”

In his resignation letter, Rockingham County Magistrate John Kallam, Jr. said that he believes marrying same-sex couples “would desecrate a holy Institution established by God Himself.” Swain County Magistrate Judge Gilbert Breedlove said that he resigned because performing a same-sex marriage “was just something I couldn’t do because of my religious beliefs.” According to his reading of the Bible, “marriage is between a man and a wife; any other type of sexual activity other than that is what is defined as fornication.”… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <Think Progress>

When it comes to Judge Breedlove, I disagree completely with his beliefs, but I respect his right to have his beliefs.  However, his job is performing a service, and same sex couples are Constitutionally guaranteed the right to have that service performed.  If he cannot do that job without violating his beliefs, he was absolutely right to resign.  I respect that.

On the other hand, Berger is trying to say that the right to freedom of religion congers the right to demy the rights of others, and it just does not work that way.

Leviticus 25:44 gives me the right to possess slaves as long as they are purchased from a neighboring country.  Now if Berger is right, than I get to exercise my right to own a Canadian, but sadly,  Canadians have the right not to be held as slaves, so I must sadly accept that their right to freedom supersedes my religious right to own one.  Dang!!

A political party, whose politicians would confer the right to violate the rights of the others is not fit to govern.

Get Out the VOTE!!!

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Oct 192014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 181.  I’m sorry about yesterday.  I just ran out of gas and had to recharge.  Tomorrow is a holy day in the Church of the Ellipsoid Ord.  My Broncos’ have the featured Sunday night service with the the Fortyniners.  I’m glad it’s at home.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:11 (average 4:40).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Right now, income inequality is the highest it’s been in our society since 1928. A lucky few in America make billions, while millions of others struggle just to get by. Nowhere is this gap more apparent than in the 4,100 plus Walmart stores across the country. Rob Walton and his family have amassed an empire of riches, and they built it on the backs of the working poor. The consequences of such skewed earning potential – where the family on top is worth $150 billion while their employees earn less than $25,000 per year – are significant and unsustainable.

As the nation’s largest employer, with $15 billion in profits annually, Walmart can afford to pay their employees a livable wage. Instead, they choose to manipulate schedules and hours to pay the majority of their workers abysmal wages. Sandra Sok, who works in Phoenix Walmart Store #5331 is a perfect example. After eight years of service to the company, she still struggles for enough work and income to make ends meet. She pleads with management every week for additional shifts because the 30 hours she is usually scheduled for simply aren’t enough. Sandra’s done her part to help Walmart succeed – she deserves more than poverty pay in return.

Many workers like Sandra are forced to rely on food stamps, health care assistance and other taxpayer-funded programs to get by. So while the Walton family alone has as much wealth as 43% of American families combined, the American people still have to pick up the tab for the Walton’s appalling business practices. And it’s not cheap: Walmart is estimated to cost the taxpayers $6.2 billion annually through public assistance costs, with expenses ranging between $3,015 and $5,815 per worker. All the while, Walmart and the Waltons are taking $8 billion a year in tax breaks that subsidize their low-wage business – and add to their profits. It is estimated that the family has avoided paying $3 billion in taxes by using special trusts to dodge estate taxes.

It’s time to end this charade and shut down the Walmart scam.

Click through for more. If you must enter Wal-fart, go to leave methane, not money.

From Upworthy: I come from a Caribbean immigrant household. Even with all the advances gay rights have made in America in the last few years, my family is still pretty much stuck in 1950. There are, of course, a few exceptions — shoutout to my sister Loree!

After watching this clip and hearing the crazy things this family says, this scenario playing out in the lives of every gay person with a less-than-accepting family would be a beautiful, absurd, and hilarious step forward.

That’s hilarious, but I can see it happening.

From TPM: The Supreme Court has rejected an emergency appeal from the Justice Department and civil rights groups who were trying to prevent the Texas voter ID law from being enforced in the November election. As you’ll recall, a district judge found the law to be unconstitutional last week because it intentionally discriminated against minority voters. But the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and now the Supreme Court have blocked that ruling from going into effect while appeals are pending. That clears the way for Texas to enforce the law in the upcoming election.

You’ve got it fight. A District Judge has ruled that this law is racist. It INTENTIONALLY discriminates against minority voters. But the Fascist Five Injustices from SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) say, go ahead and discriminate, as long as it’s on appeal.

Cartoon:

1019Cartoon

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Oct 142014
 

Some people do a very thorough job of representing the false gospel lies, hate, and greed that Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians (the polar opposites of authentic Christians) inflict on America.  Even more through is former governor and current bullshitologist for the Republican Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise, Mike Huckabee, aka Upchuck Huck.  Here is his latest.

1014huckabeeMike Huckabee is still in the throes of last week’s hissy fit over the Supreme Court’s decision to allow lower court rulings on gay marriage stand.

This offends his delicate sensibilities because liberty to Huckabee means we should all live just the way he says we should, because he is the Dictator of All Morality and Human Behavior.

Yes, that’s sarcasm. But in his latest rant above, he suggests that the entire country needs to revisit their civics lessons to understand that the Supreme Court’s ruling just means we should all rise up and override it somehow. He would like all his fellow haters to "grow a spine."…

…In my civics classes, I learned that voters accept or reject positions of candidates and the voters’ verdict determines the outcome of elections. What some Republicans are coming to understand is that when they exclude gays, or women, or make hate the centerpiece of their candidacy, they lose. As a result, they can either leave politics altogether or adjust their positions according to the will of the majority of those they represent.

This is why Mike Huckabee is not president, nor was he the nominee in 2008, much to his chagrin…

Inserted from <Crooks and Liars>

Barf Bag Alert!!!

 

Upchuck Huck cares nothing for the Constitution, as he would ignore the rights it guarantees all Americans. Have you ever seen such an extreme example of projection? He casts the Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian minority as the majority, while claiming that the minority that opposes equality is the majority. We’ve seen this tactic before. Russia experienced a left wing socialist Revolution in 1914. In 1917 a group of right wing totalitarians under Lenin staged a military coup. Although they were the minority, they called themselves Bolsheviks (majority) and called the majority socialists Mensheviks (minority). They established a right wing dictatorship, even though them maintained the surface appearance of communism. The propaganda employed by those who would establish Republican rule by the few has not changed much in the last 100 years.

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Oct 102014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 172.  I took an hour of sun-basking this afternoon.  Before long there will be only Oregon liquid sunshine.  It’s as minor Holy Day in the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb.  My Broncos’ service is not until Sunday, but tonight’s game should be a good one.  It’s almost nap time.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:14 (average 5:00).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Upworthy: G. Yamazawa takes you back to his childhood to share an important lesson he learned.

 

Very well said by an authentic Buddhist!

From AlterNet: Gay Marriage Will Of Course Lead To Polygamy: Right-wing radio host and activist Erick Erickson predicted [Wing-nut delinked] that “all the people now saying polygamy is different from gay marriage will be polygamy’s chief advocates within the decade.”

Isn’t it ironic that the people actually practicing polygamy are part of the Republican fringe? This is just one of ten crazy Republican Responses to expanding marriage equality. Click through for the other nine.

From TPM: Republican senators are calling on House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) to attach spending limits to an Obamacare program in a bill that must pass in the lame-duck session to keep the federal government open.

The strategy carries echoes of the 2013 government shutdown fight waged by the GOP over defunding Obamacare, although with smaller ambitions this time.

Fourteen conservative senators, led by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), wrote a letter to Boehner on Wednesday calling on him to use the continuing resolution — which must be enacted by Dec. 11 to avert a shutdown — to prohibit "unappropriated and unauthorized funds" under a market stability mechanism in Obamacare known as risk corridors. The program collects funds from insurers who enroll healthier patients and pays insurers who enroll sicker patients.

Even though some will try to appear reasonable and conciliatory for the election, you know that after the voting is done Republicans will still be seditious saboteurs.

Cartoon: (Barf Bag Alert!!)

1010Cartoon

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Oct 082014
 

One might think that the Injustices of SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) to have turned left to hear Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian hate mongers scream and wail.  Has SCOTUS turned librul?  Even though it’s a good thing that hundreds of same-sex couples are now free to marry, fairness and integrity have nothing to do with this non-decision.

USA SUPREME COURT DOMAThe Supreme Court on Monday let stand appeals court rulings allowing same-sex marriage in five states, a major surprise that could signal the inevitability of the right of same-sex marriage nationwide.

The development cleared the way for same-sex marriages in Indiana, Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin. Gay and lesbian couples started getting married in those states within hours.

The decision to let the appeals court rulings stand, which came without explanation in a series of brief orders, will have an enormous practical effect and may indicate a point of no return for the Supreme Court.

Most immediately, the Supreme Court’s move increased the number of states allowing same-sex marriage to 24, along with the District of Columbia, up from 19. Within weeks legal ripples from the decision could expand same-sex marriage to 30 states.

That means nearly two-thirds of same-sex couples in the United States will soon live in states where they can marry, according to the Williams Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

The problem SCROUTS has on this issue is that the Fascist Five Injustices are only four.  Kennedy tends to lean the other way.  Had the court agreed to hear one of those cases, there is a good chance that they would have set a precedent in favor of gay marriage.  On the other hand, this non description kicks the can down the road.  If, God forbid, a Republican wins the presidency in 2016, we may see another Scalia replace a moderate.  Also, the non decision keeps other forms of discrimination against LGBT people legal, as Lawrence O’Donnell and his guests explain.

Those who cannot watch MSNBC video can see this on YouTube.

SCROTUS did not take up a case, because, unable to win, they ducked a decision that would have legalized equality and outlawed all discrimination against LGBT people.  In addition, they stirred up the rabid Republican base into a frenzy of hate just four weeks before the elections.

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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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