Feb 052016
 

TGIF!!  I did not get the sleep I needed yesterday, because my helper friend came a day late.  We washed my hospital bed sheets and made the bed.  I need her help, because there is one corner where I cannot place the fritted sheet.  There is no room to get close enough in my chair.  That took up most of my afternoon nap time.  Then I watched the debate, and I won’t take today off, because it may be the last time Bernie and Hillary debate head to head. so I have to report on it.  Jeannie (Shower-Aide) has come and gone.  Arvilla (PT) was due in fifteen minutes  (now gone), and Tracey (OT) comes right after Arvilla!  When I finish blogging, I’m going to hide!  TGIF!!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:29 (average 5:54).  To do it, click here. How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The Jeff Merkley Channel:

Merkley: Stop the wave of dark money in politics

 

Amen Jeff!!  He’s one of the reasons that Oregon leads the way!

From The New Yorker: In a feat that some observers called nothing short of miraculous, the embattled pharmaceuticals C.E.O. Martin Shkreli single-handedly made the American people side with Congress on Thursday morning.

According to polls taken after his appearance before the despised legislative body, Shkreli’s smug, smirking, and utterly douchey performance had the effect of temporarily transforming members of Congress into marginally sympathetic figures.

The University of Minnesota’s Opinion Research Institute, which tracks the American people’s attitudes toward the legislative branch, said that after Shkreli’s appearance Congress’s approval rating surged from eleven per cent to fourteen per cent.

Well the guy is an asshole (syn, Republican), but frankly, I think Andy has been smokin' that Wacky tobbacky. The only thing that could make Congress more popular is a Democratic majority!

From FAIR.org: A few months ago, I raised concerns about Washington Post food columnist Tamar Haspel (FAIR.org, 10/28/15) after she admitted taking money from agribusiness interest groups that she covers.

I pointed out that her columns are biased in favor of those industry groups, particularly on the topic of GMOs, even though her column is presented to readers as an unbiased effort to find middle ground in debates about our food system.

My article was met with crickets of silence from Haspel, her Post editor Joe Yonan and the band of biotech promoters who prolifically praise Haspel on Twitter. I figured that, soon enough, Haspel might write another column that would warrant raising the concerns another notch up the pole. She didn’t disappoint.

In her January column (Washington Post, 1/26/16), Haspel offered an investigation (“the surprising truth”) about the food movement—without speaking to anyone in the food movement—concluding that there isn’t much of a food movement after all, and most people don’t really care about labeling genetically engineered foods (GMOs).

Her sources? A two-year-old survey, another survey conducted by a food-industry front group, and consumer research by the agrichemical industry’s public relations firm.  [emphasis original]

Busted!! GMOs must be contained where grown and labeled for consumers. Click though for the rest of this extensive exposé.

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Feb 032016
 

Today is another relatively busy day.  I have a grocery delivery coming to put away, volunteer editing to do, meals to prepare, and my helper friend coming to help me wash and change the sheets on my hospital bed.  I did managed to get a full night’s sleep last night, and I needed it.  I still feel tired today.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:42 (average 5:11).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Upworthy: Take a minute to celebrate and discover these 25 black "firsts" from the last 25 years.

1. First African-American woman to win the Academy Award for Best Actress: Halle Berry (2002)

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It’s Black History Month. I shared the first Black “first” listed. Click through for the other twenty-four.

From NY Times: The state-appointed emergency manager of the Detroit Public Schools, who had also managed the city of Flint and oversaw its decision to draw its water from the Flint River, resigned on Tuesday, the day before a congressional committee hearing in Washington on Flint’s water.

Michelle Zdrodowski, a spokeswoman for Detroit Public Schools, said the manager, Darnell Earley, had declined to testify before a panel investigating the widespread contamination of Flint’s tap water after the city switched its water source, which led to elevated blood lead levels throughout the city.

On Tuesday evening, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee issued a subpoena for Mr. Earley to testify on Wednesday, but his lawyer, A. Scott Bolden, said Mr. Earley would not be able to appear.

I’m glad this Republican race-traitor lost his job. Rachel Maddow explains why the Republican House hearings are just a smoke screen to protect Sturmbannführer Snyder. 

I bet a fiver against a donut that the goose-stepping, sham committee will blame it on Obama or Hillary.

From Crooks and Liars: Rand Paul, the libertarian-minded freshman senator who was once viewed as a formidable presidential contender, is suspending his White House bid on Wednesday, several sources close to Paul told CNN.

 

I was happy to see that the Clown Car had barfed Upchuck Huck. I’m equally happy to see that it puked Idiot, Son of Idiot, Named after Idiot!

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Feb 012016
 

On a scale of one to ten, today is a brutally busy day.  I have a heavy load of  personal tasks, like preparing my grocery order, editing a letter to the Governor for the President of our volunteer organization, arranging my lift ride for next Monday’s Podiatry appointment, and routine cooking and cleaning.  In addition, I had to compose a new poll, collect all the data and make all the graphics for tomorrow’s Monthly Report, and am writing today’s articles.  On top of that, I’m trying to keep track of the Iowa Caucuses.  The winners I predict in Iowa are Bernie and Hateful Hairball.,

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:04 (average 5:54).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: On a May 19 CNN broadcast with Blitzer, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders unveiled a plan to eliminate college tuition by taxing Wall Street speculation.

Sounds pretty simple and straight forward doesn’t it?  Yet, Blitzer just couldn’t wrap his mind around it…..  watch……https://www.youtube.com/…

 

That’s why Bernie is the one!

From NY Times: …Voters on the ideological edges, who dominate both parties in Iowa, have made Senator Bernie Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, and Donald J. Trump and Mr. Cruz, whose views are anathema to Republican leadership, the standard-bearers of the left and the right.

Iowa’s left can be as right as Iowa’s right is wrong. We’ll see tonight.

From Think Progress: An important but little-discussed aspect of American elections is the built-in advantage that Republicans have in the nation’s gubernatorial races.

The reason why is simple. Turnout is far higher in years when there’s a presidential election, and that boost in turnout is predominantly reflected in minorities and young people, constituencies that tend to vote Democratic. Conversely, turnout is typically over 20 points lower during midterm elections, with far fewer minorities and young people going to the polls. But just nine states have gubernatorial elections that exclusively coincide with presidential votes, whereas 34 states vote for governor during midterm elections. (Five states vote in odd-numbered years and the remaining two elect their governor every two years.)

This bias towards midterm elections is a contributing reason why swing states that twice voted for President Obama, such as Florida, Wisconsin, and Ohio, also elected Republicans during the last two gubernatorial races.

But one of those purple states could soon shift its gubernatorial elections to presidential years: Michigan.

According to the Detroit Free Press, an unidentified group of Democrats and independents are considering a ballot initiative to move gubernatorial races by two years so as to line up with presidential elections. Other statewide races, such as those for attorney general and secretary of state, would also be moved. If the initiative comes together and is passed by voters this year, the elections could shift as soon as 2020.

This may be the end of Sturmbannführer Snyder, if he isn’t in a prison cell first.  However, we need to get this on ballot measures all over the country.,

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Jan 252016
 

Yesterday I basked in the glory of the holy light fro, the blessed and beneficent Ellipsoid Orb.  It promises to be a busy week, but much less so than next month.  I have more scheduling to do today.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:32 (average 5:08).  To do better would have risked cannibalism.  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

0124Broncos20-Patriots18

A nail-biter between excellent teams.  Phew!!!  Denver’s D was brilliant!

Short Takes:

From YouTube (H/T Pat B): Yosemite Sarah Palin

Laugh Bag Alert!!

 

Sam might sue the videographer for defamation of character!

From The New Yorker: One day after Donald Trump claimed that he could shoot people on New York’s Fifth Avenue and not lose support, a leading member of the random-shooting community complained that the billionaire’s random-shooting plan lacks specifics.

Harland Dorrinson, who heads the largest association of random shooters in the nation, said that Trump’s Fifth Avenue plan “lacked many of the key ingredients necessary for a credible random shooting.”

“There’s no weapons cache, no twisted manifesto to be found later by authorities,” Dorrinson said. “To anyone in the random-shooting world, Trump’s plan fails on so many levels.”

Andy is too right, There are so many demented crazies in the rabid Republican base, anxious to do it on their idols’ behalf, that Republican candidates have no reason to commit their own random shootings.  But one never knows for sure.

From FAIR.org: Great Britain won’t actually ban Donald Trump from the country but Parliament did spend time taking seriously what was called Trump’s “poisonous, corrosive” effect on public discourse. At the same time, actors, writers and others, including Harry Belafonte, Eve Ensler and Noam Chomsky, launched a Stop Hate Dump Trump campaign, that included serving notice to media that they “are accountable for normalizing Trump’s extremism by treating it as entertainment, by giving it inordinate and unequal air time and by refusing to investigate, interrogate or condemn it appropriately.”

For some journalists, this might provoke questions: Reporters can’t ignore public figures, but is there daylight between covering news of a person and providing them a near-constant, legitimizing megaphone?

For media executives, though, the main question seems to be: What time does the bank open?

I’m thinking of a report from December by Lee Fang at The Intercept (12/10/15), about how, with visions of campaign ad dollars sparkling in his eye, CBS chief executive Les Moonves cheered on Trump’s candidacy at an investor presentation: “The more they spend, the better it is for us, and: Go Donald! Keep getting out there!

This was after Trump’s comments about Mexico sending rapists to the US and his call for Muslim Americans to have to “register” with the government.,, [emphasis added]

This is what Republicans deceptively call “The Librul media”,

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Jan 132016
 

Yesterday was a busy day . . . I took my mother to a specialist doctor which was a 4 hour affair (including transport) for her, and then I had a Family Council meeting at her care facility.  I did not arrive home until 22:30.  I was "exhaustipated"!  Since I was so late and so tired, I did not finish the Open Thread.  I just fed the furbabies and myself, then slept instead.  Today was another 2.5 hours of physio therapy including 30 minutes of bike riding.  Somebody made a comment about me being saddle sore because I often ride for a half hour.  No problem — it's a recumbent bike so very comfortable and better for the knees.

Short Take

Politico — The Supreme Court appeared ready Monday to bar public-sector unions from collecting "fair-share" fees from non-members, a move that could deal a political blow to Democrats by reducing union membership drastically and draining union coffers.

At oral arguments in a case brought by California public school teachers who object to the requirement, the court's conservative wing appeared deeply skeptical of a 1977 high court decision upholding the constitutionality of such fees.  

Under current law, public employees covered by union contracts may opt out of paying any fees toward the political activity of their union. But states may pass laws that require those dissenting members to pay a fee to cover their portion of collective bargaining costs. Such provisions, on the books in about two dozen states, are being challenged in the case by Rebecca Friedrichs and eight other California teachers.

The fair-share or "agency" fee is widely seen as a compromise between the First Amendment rights of public employees who may not wish to join a union and the material interest of the unions, which are required by law to bargain on behalf of all members of a given unit, regardless of membership status.

Now that arguments have been heard, we'll have to wait to see how SCOTUS rules.  Just playing devil's advocate a bit, what if the unions were required to only bargain on behalf of its members, and all non union members had to individually bargain for their wages/benefits etc?  Certainly the employer is not going to want to negotiate with a lot of different people due to the time and costs involved.  The settlements are likely to be smaller.  So, can Friedrichs logically say she would negotiate her contract and come out as well or better than she would have paying the agency fee?
 

Think Progress — Sue Berkowitz, director of the South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center, which advocates for low-income residents, told ThinkProgress that poverty is a huge issue in her state, largely a result of conservative policies that have been tested and proven ineffective.

“I don’t expect them to touch on anything that is realistic,” she said about the event.

Berkowitz pointed out that the summit is being held in a city with the highest number of diabetic related amputations in the country. Overall, South Carolina’s poverty rate is ranked ninth highestin the nation, with more than 860,000 people living below the poverty line in 2013. The state alsoranks seventh in the percentage of people living in poverty areas. Twenty-seven percent of the state’s children live in poverty and 25 percent live in a food-insecure household, putting it in 45th place in the nation for the well-being of its children.  

“To take SNAP and start talking about things like block granting and making it a work program is just not understanding what’s going on with the low-income community,” Berkowitz said. “At least if you want to get rid of these programs, talk about them honestly. Talk about why you’re doing it and don’t make it look like you’re doing something compassionate and helping people out of their misery. Because the only way we help people out of the misery of poverty is to ensure they’ll have living wages or living stipends to allow them to afford the things that they need.”

The only ones that the Republicans will help are themselves and the 1%.  As Berkowitz says, "At least if you want to get rid of these programs, talk about them honestly."   Honesty is not in the Republican lexicon.

The Nation On a brisk November 13 night in Paris, armed gunmen killed 130 people and shocked the world. Global media snapped into full focus, covering the attack with a frequency and depth unmatched by coverage of any terrorist attack since the Charlie Hebdo shooting in Paris earlier that year. Just hours earlier, in Beirut and Baghdad, terrorist attacks had claimed the lives of dozens. In Lebanon and Iraq, many were equally shocked, not simply by these attacks, but by what they perceived as a comparable lack of media attention to them. That week marked one crescendo in critiques on media institutions for allegedly covering terrorism more often and more in depth when it occurs in Western countries than when it occurs in non-Western ones.

Is the media creating, or at least substantially contribuuting to the climate of fear in the West with its lopsided coverage of terrorist attacks?

My Universe — 

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Nannies to a new born pitbull rejected by its mother.

 

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Jan 102016
 

Yesterday turned out to be pretty busy.  I did some paperwork.  My helper friend came and we took a trip to the instant teller machine three blocks away, did laundry and cooked six meals,  I now have 12 suppers that need only be thawed and reheated.  Then i meditated on the Orb!  May the holy Ellipsoid Orb bless your team on this high holy day.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:02 (average 4:54).  To do it, click here,  How did you do?

Pat A: I forwarded your responses to her.  Here is her reply:

Oh TC – this made me cry – you are all so wonderful!  Thank you so much – may God bless you for your kindness!!!

I hope to be back to PP in the next few weeks some time.  I hope my sister will come to help me here for a while now that she has retired – she offered nearly a year ago to come for two weeks, and actually came last Autumn for three days (but very welcome for all that) – she has never suffered from long term ill health, so has loads of energy.  She promised to be back in the New Year to do the remaining days she had promised … which would have been before now, so I hope still, but am not holding my breath!  Her offers of help have, looking back over the years, about a one in twenty chance of being fulfilled… still, onwards and upwards, and I must do what I can when I can, and she set me some tasks before she left and I am still plodding away at them! 

I also discovered ancient Victorian mould the day before yesterday under wallpaper in my living room, so I must (having allergic asthma) get rid of it ASAP – it will take me at least all week to do this as I can only do a small amount every couple of days, but I am very determined.  I had wondered for years where the slight smell of mould came from as none was visible – now I know (plaster put on the wall cutting through the Victorian plaster [with mould] when I had the damp course done many years ago has not a trace of mould on it, so the mould on the Victorian plaster is truly ancient).  Vinegar, tea tree oil, a multifibre cloth and/or a sharp scraper, a very good face mask, Futuro splints for my osteoporitic wrists, and a LOT of elbow grease are doing wonders – but it is a long job and will take one week or perhaps (please not!) even two weeks.   Prayers for my safety would be most appreciated as I do fall a bit!  (Nicky M would know if I had an accident – we speak/email daily).

Hugs and prayers and blessings

Pat

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos (classic: 2/2015): Walmarts are everywhere. They take up tons of space. Superbowl space. They sell everything, they succeed where mom-and-pop businesses fail—and sometimes, they shut down. What happens when a huge edifice, parking lot, highway exit closes in a place? Well, in McAllen, Texas:

They transformed it into the largest single-floor public library in America.

It’s not often that I have an opportunity to post about Texans doing something right.

From The New Yorker: Last month, reporters at the Las Vegas Review-Journal undertook a remarkable investigation into the secret identity of the buyer of their own newspaper. The paper had changed hands in early December for the wildly inflated price of a hundred and forty million dollars; New Media Investment Group (formerly GateHouse Media), which had purchased the paper only months earlier, reported flipping it for an estimated sixty-nine-per-cent profit. Six days after the sale was announced, on December 16th, Review-Journal reporters revealed that the acquiring company, News + Media Capital Group, which had been represented in the sale by an executive named Michael Schroeder, was in fact controlled by members of Sheldon Adelson’s family—and that, as many had suspected, the money had originated with the casino magnate himself. “My money that the children have with which to buy the newspaper is their inheritance,” Adelson told the Macau Daily Times. He said that he wasn’t directly involved with the purchase, and wasn’t interested in owning a newspaper.

Adelson is a keen participant in the U.S. political process and a mega-donor to Republican candidates, having spent, at minimum, ninety-eight million dollars in political contributions in the 2012 cycle, not counting dark-money contributions. He also owns an Israeli tabloid, Israel Hayom (Israel Today), which is brazen in its support of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s hard-line positions on Palestinian rights and other issues. To many observers, Adelson’s background, combined with the initial attempt to keep his family’s ownership interest in the Review-Journal secret, does not augur well for the future editorial independence of the paper, which was founded in 1909 and has a circulation of about a hundred and sixty-five thousand, the largest in Nevada. But the response from inside the paper demonstrated that, even for a determined billionaire and his family, it may not be so easy to gain control of a newspaper.

This is tragic for Nevada residents. The change will be gradual, but within a year or two the paper will be positioned far to the right of the Republican Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise.

From NY Times: Hillary Clinton has released an aggressive new attack ad, fanning fears about the main Republican presidential candidates to make the point that she, and no other Democrat, “can stop them.”

 

I disagree with Hillary, in part. She correctly describes the Republican threat, and she could defeat a Republican candidate. However, she is not the only Democrat who could. Bernie can too, and he is a better choice for the poor and middle classes.

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Jan 062016
 

It has been a record physiotherapy day.  I did 50 minutes of bike riding and 40 reps of 5 resistance exercises on top of ultrasound, traction and chiropractic.  Three hours work which left me with low blood sugars and tired.  But all is well.  As soon as I am done here, I have a date with an ice pack and my favourite chair!

Huffington Post — Brandon Nichols knows first hand what it's like to get poisoned by mercury.

"I got mercury poisoning two or three times," he told CBC news. "I got some serious headaches."

The University of British Columbia grad student had been in South America, researching small scale gold mining operations in Ecuador and their use of mercury.

Mercury is widely used by the miners because it bonds with gold, allowing it be more easily separated from the ore hauled out of countless mines dotting the countryside.

The widespread use of the toxic liquid metal is creating a long lasting environmental hazard that starts with ore processing and travels all the way up the food chain. But much of it is hidden in remote corners of the developing world so it's receiving little attention.

Click through for more on an environmental catastrophe that we hear little about, but which we can reduce.

Alternet — While U.S. politics has a long history of nasty elections and ugly fights, it is now fair to say that Donald Trump wins the award for the most polarizing and offensive top-ranked candidate in our nation’s history. Put simply, he’s an asshole.  And so are his supporters.  That story has been covered, so I won’t rehash it here.  Instead the question that I want to ask is how his divisive bigotry is affecting the rest of us.

Trump’s politics are not just based on bigotry; they are based on hostility. They are founded on a winner-take-all strategy that characterizes anyone who disagrees with Trump as a loser.  It’s a politics of bullying and bluster.  But the problem is that bullying becomes the defining political discourse.

Republicans notoriously refer to Obama as a very divisive person, which is a lie in my view.  If we measure divisiveness by how often Republicans don't get their own way, then I suppose Obama is divisive, but that is not how it is measured.  Obama, although not perfect, tries to put people first which is anathema to Republicans, who delight in building up the rich and corporations.  "Divisive asshole" is the perfect name for Trump.  And the fact that so many people believe his fearmongering, while the MSM delight in promoting all his bullshit which provided titillation to "the masses", is abhorrent.

Politicususa — The Massachusetts Senator crystallized the issue by calling out Republicans for working for the NRA instead of the people, “If the Republican Party would rather work for the NRA than the American people and if they won’t do their jobs to keep our children safe, then somebody else has to step up.”

“And that’s why I strongly support President Obama’s actions to use the existing laws on the books to reduce background check loopholes, to increase mental health treatment and reporting and to improve enforcement of our gun laws,” she clarified, carefully using the phrase “existing laws on the books” to counter Republican claims that the President doesn’t have this authority. 

Go Lizzie!

My Universe — 

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beautiful day

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Jan 062016
 

Yesterday was a zoo.  I practiced walking (with a walker) for PT.  The RN took my vitals and checked both stumpy and my remaining foot.  I took a shower with the bath-aide.  I have soft fur and smell wonderful.  I thought I might be bashful, but necessity trumps nekkidness,  I ordered groceries.  The sheets came, and I made the bed.  It took two hours.  When my helper friend arrived, my bed making was not up to her standards, so she remade it, swept and mopped the floor, moved a couple things to make them accessible to me, and helped empty the fridge, until she couldn’t eat anymore.  Today will be lighter.  I have a grocery delivery coming.  I have a social worker coming top help me set a strategy to get a permanent bath aide, after home health services expires.  My helper-friend may come again.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:12 (average 4:59).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Tales:

From The New Yorker: Two days after their team completed a losing season for the fifteenth time in seventeen years, a consortium of Cleveland Browns fans has formally applied to relocate the N.F.L. franchise to Los Angeles.

Unlike other teams vying to move to L.A., such as the St. Louis Rams, the San Diego Chargers, and the Oakland Raiders, the Browns’ application is believed to be the only one submitted entirely by fans.

Andy may be reporting straight news again.

From Daily KosRead it and weep, Republicans. And while you’re at it, absolutely run on a rehashed version of George W. Bush’s economic policies.

0106Emp

Consider also that under Bush, the Democrats worked to boost the economy, while under Obama, the Republicans worked to sabotage it.

From FAIR.org: …Lesson One: Social Security and Medicare Are Not Unfair to the Young…

Lesson Two: The Affordable Care Act Redistributes from the Healthy to the Less Healthy, not the Young to the Old…

Lesson Three: Our Children Will Only Be Hurt by the Debt Because the Washington Post and Other Elite Types Will Use it As An Excuse to Cut Necessary Spending…

Lesson Four: We Hand Our Children a Whole Economy, Not Just Government Debt…

Lesson Five: Global Warming Threatens the Planet, but It Is the Fault of the Rich, not Older Generations… [emphasis original]

Click through for a fascinating article anout how media are trying to brainwash youth to blame seniors for the world’s ills, instead of the 0.1%.

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Jan 032016
 

Here in Portland, we have a winter weather warning with snow forecast.  It’s currently 27°, so it’s a perfect day for worship at the Church of the Ellipsoid Orb and watching Viv kick my kitty butt at fantasy football.  I hope you are all enjoying the last day of your holiday weekend.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:10 (average 4:54).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos (classic: 11/2015): It’s as bad as many of us feared.  In spite of the "happy talk" of "oh, his son will be running it and he’s different," "Rupert wouldn’t destroy an asset like Nat Geo," etc., today the axe fell.

The memo went out, and November 3rd 2015 came to the National Geographic office. This was the day in which Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox took over National Geographic. The management of National Geographic sent out an email telling its staff, all of its staff, all to report to their headquarters, and wait by their phones. This pulled back every person who was in the field, every photographer, every reporter, even those on vacation had to show up on this fateful day.

As these phones rang, one by one National Geographic let go the award-winning staff, and the venerable institution was no more.

The name now belongs to Rupert Murdoch, and he has plans for it. The CEO of National Geographic Society, Greg Knell, tried to claim back in September that “there won’t be an [editorial] turn in a direction that is different from the National Geographic heritage.” Murdoch’s move today only served to prove Knell’s words hollow, with hundreds of talented people now served their pink slips. And with the recognition that Murdoch’s other enterprises do not reflect the standards held by National Geographic, and with Murdoch’s history of changing the editorial direction of purchased properties, today’s move indicates that we can expect a similar shift for National Geographic.

Another treasure has been trashed by Murdoch.

From The New Yorker: Just minutes after the Somali-based Al Qaeda affiliate Shabaab group released a propaganda video featuring a clip of Donald Trump, the Republican Presidential front-runner boasted that the video would be the highest-rated terror video of all time.

Within an hour of the video’s appearance, Trump took to Twitter to crow about his role in the jihadist promo, and tweaked his G.O.P. rivals for failing to be chosen by Shabaab.

Andy, it’s not just the Hairball of Hatred, The Republican Party has been the best recruiting tool that Al Qaeda and the Daesh have ever had.

From NY Times: Senator Bernie Sanders’s presidential campaign raised more than $33 million in the final three months of 2015, as his wide base of small-amount donors enabled him to come within $4 million of the amount raised by Hillary Clinton, his rival for the Democratic nomination, his campaign said Saturday.

Mr. Sanders, a senator from Vermont, has now raised $73 million for his nomination fight, his aides said in a news release.

The campaign said more than one million individual donors had made more than 2.5 million contributions, passing President Obama’s previous record of about 2.2 million for the number of individual donations, which was set at the end of 2011.

“This people-powered campaign is revolutionizing American politics,” Jeff Weaver, Mr. Sanders’s campaign manager, said in a news release accompanying the release of the figures.

I’m quite surprised that Bernie’s mostly people fundraising is so close to Hillary’s mostly corporate fundraising. Sadly neither comes close to the secret support for the Clown Car from the 0.1% and giant corporations, both domestic and foreign.

Cartoon:

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If you’re forgotten, Mooseolini is aka Bloody Bullseye Barbie, Drill Baby Dingbat, and Tundra Twit (similar to Squatch’s favorite).

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Dec 302015
 

I am completely swamped.  Yesterday I had hour long visits from Home Health PT, OT, and RN, and a two hour visit from my PC repair guy.  Today I have to schedule doctor visits.  Tomorrow I have the bed rental company coming to take down the hospital bed I’ve been renting before 2 PM, a grocery delivery coming before 2 PM, and the bed setup company coming to install my own hospital bed.  Let’s npt even talk about year end financial; record keeping and blog maintenance.  I am comp[let5ely swamped.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:24 (average 4:51).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

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Fantasy Football Report:

Here’s the playoff picture in our own fantasy football league.

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Contrast to Patty Monster and Jack for making it to the championship game.

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: In an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, Bernie Sanders made some salient points with regard to the unprecedented amount of coverage that the media has given to Donald Trump since he announced his campaign for the GOP nomination for president.

 

Bernie’s points are spot-on. It’s difficult to find stories that don’t involve the Hairball.

From NY Times: The hedge fund magnates Daniel S. Loeb, Louis Moore Bacon and Steven A. Cohen have much in common. They have managed billions of dollars in capital, earning vast fortunes. They have invested large sums in art — and millions more in political candidates.

Moreover, each has exploited an esoteric tax loophole that saved them millions in taxes. The trick? Route the money to Bermuda and back.

With inequality at its highest levels in nearly a century and public debate rising over whether the government should respond to it through higher taxes on the wealthy, the very richest Americans have financed a sophisticated and astonishingly effective apparatus for shielding their fortunes. Some call it the “income defense industry,” consisting of a high-priced phalanx of lawyers, estate planners, lobbyists and anti-tax activists who exploit and defend a dizzying array of tax maneuvers, virtually none of them available to taxpayers of more modest means.

When Republicans lie that Democrats want to raise YOUR taxes, they are assuming that YOU are a member of the 0.1%.

From Alternet: Campbell Brown Hired Transphobic, Sexist, Racially Insensitive Writer To "Fact-Check" Education Policy Reporting

This summer, teachers union opponent and former journalist Campbell Brown launched a "non-profit, non-partisan news site about education," called The Seventy Four. In spite of the site’s stated mission [Republican propaganda delinked] to combat "misinformation and political spin" with "investigation, expertise, and experience," Brown hired Eric Owens, [Republican propaganda delinked] who has a long history of attacks on students and teachers, to write for the site. Owens has a long history of attacking and mocking teachers and students with transphobic [Republican propaganda delinked], sexist [Republican propaganda delinked], victim-blaming [Republican propaganda delinked], and racially insensitive [Republican propaganda delinked]  rhetoric as the education editor at the Daily Caller.

This is just the fifth of five worst Republican media stories about education. Click through doe the other four.

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Dec 032015
 

Yesterday I had a difficult day.  PT was working me on fall recovery techniques.  I was able to get back up to stationary objects, but when I tried a one person assist from ground to wheelchair, I found that I lack the physical strength to lift myself without being able to support more weight with my arms.  I tried so hard that I strained the knee on my good leg in the process, but it’s almost better today.

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: According to his 2nd ex-wife Robert Luis Dear, the accused Colorado Planned Parenthood murderer, was a violently abusive extreme right-wing neo-Christian anti-abortion zealot end-timer who after committing an act of rape believed every thing vile he did would ultimately be “forgiven” by God.

Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian politicians and pundits, the blood is on your hands!

From NY Times: …Democrats, including President Obama, emphasize the need to address America’s problems with guns. Republicans talk about the need to address mental health. Both are right.

First, guns, the central issue: We need a new public health approach based not on eliminating guns (that simply won’t happen in a land awash with 300 million guns) but on reducing the carnage they cause.

We routinely construct policies that reduce the toll of deadly products around us. That’s what we do with cars (driver’s licenses, seatbelts, guardrails). It’s what we do with swimming pools (fences, childproof gates, pool covers). It’s what we do with toy guns (orange tips).

It’s what we should do with real guns.

I reference this Republican hack only to demonstrate how biased he is..  Kristof is twisting some crucial facts in his article. First, while Republicans SAY we need to address mental health needs, they keep slashing the spending on mental health. Only Democrats are actually trying to address those needs. Second Republicans are blocking all attempts by Democrats to treat guns as a public health problem.

From Upworthy: Ironically, the rate of Arctic melting has essentially snowballed — the factors add up exponentially, and the effects get bigger and bigger and bigger (even as the snow itself disappears). So while yes, there are still winters and it still gets cold, the ecosystem is disastrously out of balance, and it’s only getting worse.

But fear not! There’s still hope!

Or maybe do fear a little bit, if that’s the kind of motivation that you need to make sustainable environmental changes in your life or to urge President Obama to take action before it gets too late. Because we seriously need to do something — and fast.

Here’s a little more information, courtesy of National Geographic.

The need us deadly serious. Please join me in signing the NDRC petition, supporting green initiatives, and reducing your own carbon footprint as much as possible.

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Nov 242015
 

For some time I have been complaining that television media are helping the Republican Party and their allies, the Daesh, sow fear in Americans’ hearts for political gain.  However, I have seldom seen such blatant bigotry as I did from CNN’s Carol Costello, as she tried to put words in a mayor’s mouth.

1124CostelloIs everyone as tired as I am of the media’s pants-wetting about Muslims? You’d think we were living back in the McCarthy era when the Commies were all coming to get us and our best friends might have been — shiver — Commies.

Meanwhile, media ignores the brownshirt behavior of our Republican candidates, pretending they’re just engaging in the normal rhetoric of the day. Because Muslims can be scary to them. Scarier than Donald Trump doing his impression of Hitler’s political beginnings.

CNN’s Carol Costello just came right out with it during this segment with Hamtramck mayor Karen Majewski….

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I felt sorry for Costello over the pronunciation of the mayor’s name, but I was appalled at her many attempts to coax Majewski into admitting fear for the evil Muslims in her city.  On the other hand, Mayor Majewski was a superb example of how Americans should be acting.  Major kudos to her.

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