Sep 182014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow day 150.  I’m waiting for my groceries to arrive.  I plugged in my notebook, which I have not used since the last time I overnighted in Salem.  Fortunately I timed a Windows Update, so that’s done.  It took over two hours just to download the updates.  Then I updated my AV software, my security software, my password manager three browsers and several other utilities.  Fortunately I was able to do research while a lot of that was going on.  Tomorrow’s main chore is reconfiguring the email client to the new HSP settings.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:24 (average 6:05).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: In what Secretary of State John Kerry described as a significant foreign-policy coup, the U.S. claimed, on Tuesday, that it had successfully located a moderate Syrian rebel.

Though Kerry did not elaborate on how the U.S. did so, he said that locating the rebel was “the culmination of a months-long effort.”

The Secretary of State said that the Syrian had been appropriately vetted and was deemed “moderately rebellious.”

“He definitely seems to be the sort of gentleman we can work with,” Kerry said, adding that several millions of dollars would be spent arming and training the rebel in the days and weeks ahead.

Kerry said that the government’s successful identification of a moderate Syrian rebel was a major victory that should silence critics of the U.S.’s strategy in Iraq and Syria.

Hmmmmm, Andy… I don’t see it working, unless he has a friend.

From NY Times: President Obama’s top military adviser said Tuesday that he would recommend deploying United States forces in ground operations against Islamic extremists in Iraq if airstrikes proved insufficient, opening the door to a riskier, more expansive American combat role than the president has publicly outlined.

Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that while he was confident that an American-led coalition would defeat the Islamic State, he would not foreclose the possibility of asking Mr. Obama to send American troops to fight the militants on the ground — something Mr. Obama has ruled out.

This is not the scandal Republicans claim it is, nor does it indicate what Obama actually would decide. Asking a general about the use of troops is like asking a carpenter about the use of a hammer.

From Upworthy: Vicky Beeching is an artist, broadcaster, and theologian. And this, on Channel 4 news, was her first TV interview after coming out. She’s now speaking at the Gay Christian Network and continuing to share her beliefs about being Christian and gay.

Semi-Barf Bag Alert!

 

Scott Lively is a leader of The Family and C Street. He is lying about Uganda. He organized C Street Republican Senators and Representatives to help draft legislation to execute gay people there, apparently intending it as a test for future implementation here, when they have dominion.  Lively is putting on a far less rabid public face than his actual practices indicate.  There was only one Christian in that discussion, Vicky.

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Sep 122014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow, day 144.  I’m still quite tired after my prison trip and busy day yesterday, so I’m relaxing today and cooking a cross rib roast, before the heat sets in.  I thought I had PT tomorrow, but I was mistaken.  It’s not until next week. :-)

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:37 (average 6:26).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Crooks and Liars: Shameless Sean is at it again. In these days of stress before the November midterms, he’s ramped up the hate and the tea party rhetoric to a dull roar. But you know what you can’t hear over the din? Sean’s voice telling viewers that he has a business relationship with folks he’s interviewing on his television show.

You may recall that Hannity, Rush Limbaugh and other right-wing radio hosts (like Mark Levin) are beneficiaries of wingnut welfare. Organizations like FreedomWorks, Americans for Prosperity, and the Tea Party Patriots prop up Hannity et al in order to keep the messaging machine fed with plenty of fresh hate.

So be it. The problem is, you don’t get to receive wingnut welfare on the radio side and then interview your benefactor on the cable side without some disclosure of the business relationship, which Hannity ‘forgot’ to do, thereby making (even bigger) liars of Fox News…

Barf Bag Alert!!!

 

Making bigger liars of Faux Noise is like making infinity further away. This is Republican Propaganda at it’s worth, paid for by the 0.1%

From AlterNet: A Republican state senator in Georgia sparked a dispute with a pastor in his district after complaining about early voting being implemented in a predominantly African-American neighborhood,  the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“I would prefer more educated voters than a greater increase in the number of voters,” state Sen. Fran Millar (R) wrote  on his Facebook page. [GOPig delinked] “If you don’t believe this is an efort [sic] to maximize Democratic votes pure and simple, then you are not a realist. This is a partisan stunt and I hope it can be stopped.”

The exact opposite is true. This Republican wants to make it more difficult for informed voters to get to the polls, because they will vote against his party. Disenfranchising voters is the partisan stunt!  Get out the vote!!

From Right Wing Watch: One of the very first posts we ever wrote about the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer highlighted a column he wrote calling for Muslims to be banned from serving in the military. That was nearly five years ago and now Fischer is finally getting around to calling for atheists to be banned from serving in the U.S. armed forces as well.

Responding to a situation [pseudo-Christian delinked] in which an airman was denied his request to re-enlist in the Air Force because he refuses to take an oath containing the phrase "so help me God," Fischer asserts [pseudo-Christian delinked] that atheists should be prohibited from serving in all braches of the military because "there is no place in the United States military for those who do not believe in the Creator who is the source of every single one of our fundamental human and civil rights"…

If only Christians get to serve in the military, then Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians need not apply.

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Aug 072014
 

I trust you already know that, for the first time since Vietnam, a General officer has been killed in a war zone.  From all accounts Major General Harold J Greene was an excellent, dedicated commander.  I ask that you join me in condolences, thoughts ands prayers for his family, his friends, his troops and all who loved him.

0807GenGreeneFor the first time since Vietnam, a United States Army general was killed in an overseas conflict on Tuesday when an Afghan soldier opened fire on senior American officers at a military training academy.

The slain officer, Maj. Gen. Harold J. Greene, was the highest-ranking member of the NATO-led coalition killed in the Afghanistan war, and his death punctuated the problems vexing the Americans as they try to wind down the 13-year-old conflict, contending with a political crisis that has threatened to splinter the Afghan government and leave it unable to fend off the Taliban.

The general was among a group of senior American and Afghan officers making a routine visit to Afghanistan’s premier military academy on the outskirts of Kabul when an Afghan soldier sprayed the officers with bullets from the window of a nearby building, hitting at least 15 before he was killed.

Though American officials said General Greene was not believed to have been specifically targeted, his violent death at the hands of an Afghan soldier, not an insurgent, was a reminder of the dangers faced by even the highest-ranking, and best protected, officers in Afghanistan… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <NY Times>

No doubt he shall be mourned my many.

I’m sad to report that only minutes after hearing of this I also heard Republicans using the occasion to fault Obama and call for a continuation of the US occupation of Afghanistan.  Thy are saying this proves that we have not yet defeated Al Qaeda in Afghanistan.  How absurd!

There is no evidence at all of any association between the attacker and Al Qaeda.  He attacked us because we are foreign and occupying his country.  The Afghan people have a history of driving out foreign occupiers for thousands of years.  There is one way to stop the attacks.  Leave their country.  In the 19th and early e0th centuries, the British learned that lesson the hard way.  In the 20th century, so did the Russians.  In the 21st century, we are learning it, but not quickly enough.  If leaving Afghanistan were a bad idea, Republicans would not oppose it.

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May 262014
 

Memorial Day

I won’t wish you a happy Memorial Day.  There’s nothing at all happy about remembering mostly young men and women, who who have sacrificed their lives in the service of this nation.  Honoring them is a solemn occasion.  I add to their number two students from Jackson State, four students from Kent State, and others who were killed opposing war, whose deaths were covered-up.  Their service is equally worthy of honor.

Although I have opposed the wars in my lifetime, I fully believe that while hating the war, we must cherish the warriors.  Politicians, and we who elect them, are at fault for criminal wars, not the soldiers.

While some Veterans groups try to use this holiday to focus our attention on them, but this is not their day.  We have Veterans Day to honor their service, but let me close with a message for veterans this Memorial Day: Thank you for being good enough at your job that you came back, and in so doing, saved us the pain of honoring your loss.

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Jan 172014
 

I’m writing for tomorrow and running late, because I overslept by several hours.  That’s a good thing.  I’m not going to push myself to return to full time blogging for a week, because I have to spend two nights in Salem next week for prison volunteer work and our annual organizational meeting for it.  While I’m slightly improved, I want make sure I don’t knock myself back down before then.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:55 (average 4:25).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From MSNBC: Hope fades for long-term unemployed

 

International readers, try Googling this in a day or two. I could not find it anywhere else. Jeff Merkley and Oregon are leading the way against Republican class warfare.

From NY Times: The Air Force said on Wednesday that 34 officers responsible for launching the nation’s nuclear missiles had been suspended, and their security clearances revoked, for cheating on monthly proficiency tests that assess their knowledge of how to operate the warheads.

At a news conference, Deborah Lee James, the secretary of the Air Force, said the officers, at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana, either knew about or took part in texting answers to the routine monthly tests.

Eleven Air Force officers — including two accused in the Malmstrom cheating scandal, as well as one other nuclear missile officer — have also been the focus of suspicion in an illegal drugs investigation, defense officials said.

Although the Air Force has been plagued in recent years by scandals, the current revelations are particularly alarming because they involve America’s nuclear arsenal, where errors could be catastrophic.

One of Obama’s biggest mistakes has been to leave Bush’s Republican officials in most key positions involving military oversight. The military needs higher quality oversight, especially since the Bush Regime purged the competent officers who opposed his military fiascos, resulting in a military leadership culture in which extreme ideology trumps even minimal ability. Clearly it’s long past time to clean house.

From Right Wing Watch: Far-right columnist Erik Rush has come to believe that efforts to impeach and remove President Obama from office are unlikely to succeed, so he is now is calling on “military personnel” to “lend their support to an effort by Congress to remove the president through methods other than impeachment.”

In a WorldNetDaily column [World Nut Daily delinked] today, Rush doesn’t specify the extra-constitutional means he hopes to use to oust Obama, but he does regret that such a move is “less likely than it otherwise might have been given the widespread purge that has taken place within the military.”

Previously, Rush has called for Obama’s ouster “by any means necessary,” and repeatedly advocated executing the president.  [emphasis added”]

The Republican Party has an endless supply of seditionists ready to commit treason, and the party leadership refuses to denounce their efforts. Some Republican members of Congress even attend their functions.

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Oct 082013
 

RepublicansOnParade3

Here is the thirty-first article in our Republicans on Parade series, featuring individuals who personify what the Republican Party has become. Today’s honoree is Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian TV host Rick Joyner, for proposing treason in the form of a major Second Amendment solution.

8JoynerRick Joyner, one of the leading lights of the Christian Dominionist movement, recently told his television audience that democracy has failed in America [seditionist delinked], and that the nation’s only hope, in light of the looming “tyranny” of the Obama administration, is “a military takeover – martial law.

Said Joyner: “There’s no way our Republic can last much longer. It may not last through Obama’s second term. There are a lot of people who feel that it can’t. That there are forces right now that are seeking to undermine and to destroy the Republic. There’s almost a glib and almost a joyful disregard of the Constitution and belittling of the Constitution. We can’t make it without that. It’s our foundation, our moorings. We’re headed for serious tyranny…

“I think we’ve been used in some wonderful and powerful ways by God. We’ve been one of the most generous nations in history. We’ve done so much good. And that’s why I appeal to the Lord: ‘Don’t let us be totally destroyed, please raise up those who will save us!’ And as I’ve started telling friends for a long time, no election is going to get the right person in there that’s going to restore us, because the system is so broken, so undermined right now, the whole system.

I believe our only hope is a military takeover – martial law.”… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <SPLC>

SPLC had video of this in a companion article, but Joyner pulled it, claiming © infringement to hide from responsibility for what he said, although he litters the web with his other screeds.  David Pakman has an out-take, however.

Joyner, a self-proclaimed TEAbagger, claims to be supporting the Constitution, but ignores the constitutional mandate that we elect our officials.  But Joyner says that he has the right to overthrow those elected officials by force.  For him to make that statement is sedition.  If he actually staged an attempted coup using US military units, it would be treason, because a military attack on the nation is a state of war.  If nothing else, this illustrates how important it is to keep Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians from infiltrating our military and brainwashing our troops, as they are trying to do now.

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Aug 012013
 

As I write for day 49, It’s only 79° at my desk, but that will change, because the forecast is 85° (add 15° in my ‘breezeway’), and the humidity is 77%.  This the first time I have ever seen a forecast for “dry thunderstorms”.  I received what appears to be good news on my apartment.  I’m approved and first on the list on the 17th, when the woman from county, supposedly with the rubber stamp, returns.  I’ll believe it completely when I have a rent receipt in hand, but it looks good.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:14 (average 4:32).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: Responding to Pope Francis’s suggestion that the Pope is not capable of judging gays, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia contacted the Vatican today to say that he would be “more than happy” to help the Pontiff do so.

“If he’s having trouble judging homosexuals, well, then I’m his man,” Scalia told reporters after making his offer. “I have over a quarter century of professional experience.”

I’m sure he would get lots of help from Teabag Thomas.

From Me (data from Wikipedia):  Where does our money go.  This is the longest Short Take (vertically) to date.

1RedStatesTake

Most donor states are blue. Most moocher states are red.

From NY Times: A military judge on Tuesday found Pfc. Bradley Manning not guilty of “aiding the enemy” for his release of hundreds of thousands of military and diplomatic documents to WikiLeaks for publication on the Internet, rejecting the government’s unprecedented effort to bring such a charge in a leak case.

But the judge in the court-martial, Col. Denise R. Lind, convicted Private Manning of six counts of violating the Espionage Act of 1917 and most of the other crimes he was charged with. He faces a theoretical maximum sentence of 136 years in prison, although legal experts said the actual term was likely to be much shorter.

It has always been my position, along with that of Henry David Thoreau, author of Civil Disobedience, that when one breaks the law in an act of civil disobedience, willingness to accept the punishment for so doing is what underlines the integrity of the act. That and more separates Manning’s heroism  from Snowden’s behavior.  I’m pleased that Bradley Manning was acquitted of the most serious charges against him, which were not justified in my opinion. I salute Bradley Manning and hope that the actual term of his sentence is short, the shorter the better, with full credit for time served.

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