Feb 082016
 

Right wing nut jobs never cease to amaze me with the things they say and do.  And this past week is no exception.  Next week will likely be the same.  Of course the number of absurdities reported is limited do to space constraints.

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Fox Newsian has not heard of any anti-Muslim hate crimes, therefore they don’t happen.

To no one's surprise, the intrepid reporters at Fox News did not like the fact that President Obama visited a mosque any more than Marco Rubio did. On Tuesday, “The Five” hosts wondered why in the world the president found that necessary. Co-host Juan Williams mentioned the fact that hate crimes against Muslims have been on the rise since the Paris and San Bernardino attacks. Really? Eric Bolling and Kimberly Guilfoyle responded. It’s kind of amazing how much you can not know just by refusing to know it.

The conversation went like this:

Guilfoyle: I think that Christians are being driven out of the Middle East in droves, being raped and tortured, murdered. Religious Christian sites and churches not being allowed to be rebuilt. What is the president doing to stand for them? Instead every time he gives one of these speeches we hear a little excerpt from the book of Obama of how Christians should be living their life and that Muslim is a religion of peace. Show me the evidence.

Williams: The challenge at the moment has to do with the spike in attacks, hate crimes against Muslims in the United States. And don't forget you've had Donald Trump say we should ban….

Bolling: Are there a lot of hate crimes against Muslims in the United States? Because I haven't heard of any.

Guilfoyle: Where are the numbers for that?

Well, the numbers are to hard to find, of course. We could suggest Guilfoyle and Bolling check out this Washington Post article about a five-fold increase in attacks on Muslims since 9/11.

They won’t, but you can.

"Muslim is a religion"?  Oh really?  And I thought Muslims were people and Islam was a religion.  Silly me (said dripping with sarcasm)!  These obviously ignorant Faux Noise "newsians" could also reference the Huff Post which is tracking hate crimes against Muslims during 2016.  Additionally, I thought Obama was the POTUS for every American, which of course includes Muslim Americans.  Divisive my ass!  So tell me, is it wilful ignorance or are they just that stupid?

This is the third of 5 right wing absurdities this week.  Click through for the other four.

 

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Jan 282016
 

This morning, when I awakened, I found that the elevator is now working, so the dreaded task is now done, and I’m pooped.  Unfortunately, now I’m too sore and tired to make half a dozen meals, which was today’s chore.  My helper friend has disappeared again as she sometimes does.  She was supposed to be here Tuesday and did not show up, and I have been unable to reach her since.  That’s frustrating!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 5:19 (average 7:00).  To do it click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: Millions of Americans are expressing their resentment and outrage at being put in the appalling position of siding with the Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, a state of affairs that many are calling “intolerable.”

“Never in a million years did I envision a situation where I would be on the same side as Megyn Kelly,” Tracy Klugian, of Butte, Montana, said. “Now that I find myself in just such a situation, let me say this: it’s horrible. Truly horrible.”

“Putting people through the ordeal of siding with Megyn Kelly could be the worst thing Donald Trump has done in this campaign,” Jervis Kentwell, of Norwalk, Connecticut, said. “I know he thinks he’s invulnerable or whatever, but it’s hard to see him recovering from this.”

Andy is so right! I may sue Hateful Hairball over the pain and suffering it has caused me.

From Daily Kos: The latest massive offense the Obama administration has done to Wall Street is to come up with a rule telling financial services companies that their first duty is to their clients. That’s such an offensive requirement, Republicans in Congress have even been trying to derail it. Because nothing should stand in the way of profits for Wall Street, including the nest eggs of senior citizens. To prove how awful the whole idea is, American International Group Inc. (AIG)  decided they had to sell off, admitting that if they can’t screw old people out of money, then why bother?

"It’s a business we are not the best owner of, particularly in the light of potential Department of Labor rules," [CEO Peter] Hancock said Tuesday in a conference call updating investors on AIG’s strategy. "With the new DOL rules, that was a big factor in thinking whether this was better owned by somebody independent of us." […]

Hancock said the broker-dealer network earned about $40 million in 2014, yet consumed a "disproportionate amount" of AIG’s compliance cost.

Considering that the taxpayers of America loaned AIG over $67 billion in TARP funds to keep them out of bankruptcy, their attitude that they don’t want to play, unless they are allowed to rip-off seniors can best be described as Republican.

From Alternet: A series of exposés released this week shed further light on an often-overlooked form of war profiteering: charity organizations that raise millions of dollars under the auspices of serving wounded military veterans, only to inappropriately spend those funds.

Specifically, the Wounded Warrior Project is under the microscope, with a New York Times investigation finding that the well-heeled organization has spent “millions a year on travel, dinners, hotels and conferences that often seemed more lavish than appropriate.”

Such spending is no small matter, notes journalist David Philipps, as the charity “has evolved into a fund-raising giant, taking in more than $372 million in 2015 alone—largely through small donations from people over 65.” In fact, according to Philipps, the group is the largest and most rapidly-expanding organization in the country.

I’ve been emotionally tempted to give to them on a couple of occasions. I’m glad that I didn’t. Isn’t it a shame that Republicans have infested secular charities and are just as corrupt as they have been for ages in pseudo-Christian charities?

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Jan 222016
 

I have another busy day today.  My shower-aide just left, leaving me smelling like a rose.  PT is coming at 9:00 and OT at 10:00, so they will have come and gone by the time I get this posted.  Arvilla (PT) is bringing a cane to see if it will give me sufficient stability to aid in transfers, when I’m out and don’t have my walker for transfers.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today;s took me 3:24 (average 5:10).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Ted Nugent may have totally broken the law and called for the lynching of a sitting president and (possible) future sitting president. [Fascist criminal delinked]

Our unholy rotten soulless criminal America destroying government killed 4 Americans in Banghazi. Period! What sort of chimpass punk would deny security, turn down 61 requests for security, then tell US forces to STAND DOWN when they were ready to kickass on the allapukes & save American lives! Obama & Clinton, thats who. They should be tried for treason & hung. Our entire fkdup gvt must be cleansed asap.

Can’t you feel what Republicans call love?!!?

From Media Matters: Fox News has devoted roughly three hours to promoting the release of Michael Bay’s 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, a movie about the 2012 attacks on diplomatic facilities in Libya, praising the film, repeatedly characterizing the movie as a threat to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, and hyping several debunked myths about the Benghazi terror attacks. More than half of the network’s 32 segments focused on falsehoods about the State Department and Obama administration’s responses to the attacks, and nearly 60 percent of the segments linked the movie to Clinton’s 2016 bid for the White House.

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No matter how many times the lies are debunked, The Republican Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise, refuses to let this go.

From NY Times: In a significant victory for President Obama, a federal appeals panel on Thursday rejected an effort by 27 states and dozens of corporations and industry groups to block the administration’s signature regulation on emissions from coal-fired power plants while a lawsuit moves through the courts.

The rule, issued last summer by the Environmental Protection Agency, is at the heart of Mr. Obama’s efforts to tackle climate change. It would require each state to significantly cut greenhouse gas pollution from electric power plants, the nation’s largest source of such emissions.

Once fully in place, the regulation — which would cut emissions from existing power plants by 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030 — could transform the electricity system, closing hundreds of heavily polluting coal-fired plants and sharply increasing production of wind and solar powers.

But the 27 states, many of which have economies that rely on coal mining or coal-fired power, have sued the administration to kill the plan. The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit set June 2 to hear arguments in that case, although it is widely expected to be ultimately decided by the Supreme Court, most likely in 2017.

Won’t it be wonderful, if a Democratic President can replace a Republican Injustice on SCROTUS by 2017?

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Jan 162016
 
furies

Just one thing this week which seems to me to call for the efforts of the Greek Furies (Erinyes) to come and deal with. Just as a reminder, though no one really knows how many there were supposed to be, the three names we have are Alecto, Megaera, and Tisiphone. These roughly translate as "unceasing," "grudging," and "vengeful destruction."


The thing is, ladies, this guy lives just the up the street and around the corner from me.  (OK, the "street" is I-25 and the "corner" is the interchange with I-70, but he's still in my state.)  His name is Jerry Sonnenberg.       

He is in a position of authority, to which he was elected by the people who live around him.  (Many of them voted to "secede" from the state a while ago.  Maybe you could chase them all into Kansas.  Not everyone there, just those who voted for him, would be fine.)

Recently our President gave a speech about putting some reatrictions on guns – I know you don't need them for your work, but I'm sure you know what they are.  They kill people.  That's what they are made to do is kill people.  Unless they are killing animals.  They are not like swords and spears; they kill from a distance; sometimes a very long distance.  And they aren't limited to killing one person at a time.  Some can kill many prople with just one motion.  And people here have been using them to do just that.  A little over three years ago, one person used a few of them to kill six adults and 20 tiny children in their achool. 

When our President referred to that incident, he had tears in his eyes.  The tears that this Sonnenberg person wants to use as gun oil to lubricate his rifle.

Our President is a humble man.  He doesn'r grab publicity for a lot of the things he does.  So it's possible, maybe even likely, that this Sonnenberg person didn't know this about him.  But when he went to Sandy Hook after those 26 deaths, this is what he did, as described by an eyewirness:

 

I went downstairs to greet President Obama when he arrived, and I provided an overview of the situation. “Two families per classroom … The first is … and their child was … The second is … and their child was … We’ll tell you the rest as you go.”

The president took a deep breath and steeled himself, and went into the first classroom. And what happened next I’ll never forget.

Person after person received an engulfing hug from our commander in chief. He’d say, “Tell me about your son. … Tell me about your daughter,” and then hold pictures of the lost beloved as their parents described favorite foods, television shows, and the sound of their laughter. For the younger siblings of those who had passed away—many of them two, three, or four years old, too young to understand it all—the president would grab them and toss them, laughing, up into the air, and then hand them a box of White House M&M’s, which were always kept close at hand. In each room, I saw his eyes water, but he did not break.

And then the entire scene would repeat—for hours. Over and over and over again, through well over a hundred relatives of the fallen, each one equally broken, wrecked by the loss. After each classroom, we would go back into those fluorescent hallways and walk through the names of the coming families, and then the president would dive back in, like a soldier returning to a tour of duty in a worthy but wearing war. We spent what felt like a lifetime in those classrooms, and every single person received the same tender treatment. The same hugs. The same looks, directly in their eyes. The same sincere offer of support and prayer.

I would say our President earned every tear that was shed during that speech.  I would speak differently about this Sonnenberg person.  But I will let Amy Runyon-Harms, the director of the group Progress Now Colorado, say it for me instead: 

"Thanks to Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg, the right wing’s boundless contempt for the President is now an insult to the victims he wept for.  Sen. Sonnenberg is a disgrace to the Colorado Senate, and to the victims and survivors of mass shootings that have occurred in our state,  We want President Obama and all victims of gun violence to know that Jerry Sonnenberg does not speak for Colorado.”

Alecto, Megaera, Tisiphone – I don't care which of you takes this guy on, or if you all want to share the job.  Just – get him out of here.  Thanks.

The offensive photo has been removed from the story; but I had seen it and found a copy.  I thought the Erinyes needed to see it.  The photo of ammosexual Sonnenberg handling his – ahem – is from the story.  Amy Runyon-Harms is better looking; her photo is a publicity still from PBS.

The Erinyes and I will be back with more new material when we can.  See you then.

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Jan 132016
 

Last night I watch President Barack Obama give his eighth and last State of the Union address.  I only noticed one actual lie.  He said it would be a short speech.  He appeared more interested in establishing legacy than lining up support for a progressive agenda.  It was an excellent speech! However, he was, in my opinion. far too conciliatory toward Republicans.  Rather that calling the extreme partisanship in Washington his failure. he should have made it clear that even when he gives far too much, it is never enough to satisfy Republican demands.  Even when he gives them what they ask for, they reject it and demand more.  The blame for extreme partisanship rests totally with the Republican Party.  I have the complete video and a transcript for you.  Lets start with some highlights:

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I’m going to give you my totally-biased, unvarnished impression of the State of the Union address in one sentence: I will never see another President as gifted as this one in my lifetime, and he will be missed.

And hey, when Kim Davis’ only comment about the speech was that "it was good," then you know he must have done something right. But give it time, and the spinners and haters will have you believing he cast a spell on everyone that only they can break. Before they do that, here are my favorite moments. The entire speech is at the top of the page, and my quotes are from the transcript as released ahead of the speech.

The central theme: "But such progress is not inevitable. It is the result of choices we make together. And we face such choices right now. Will we respond to the changes of our time with fear, turning inward as a nation, and turning against each other as a people? Or will we face the future with confidence in who we are, what we stand for, and the incredible things we can do together?"

Perfect framing, contrasting the fearmongering of the Republican field with a more confident, hopeful outlook of what the future can be.

The real reason we’re anxious : "Anyone claiming that America’s economy is in decline is peddling fiction. What is true – and the reason that a lot of Americans feel anxious – is that the economy has been changing in profound ways, changes that started long before the Great Recession hit and haven’t let up. "

I thought he did an excellent job of addressing the anxiety that many still do feel, even if many probably won’t have ears to hear.

Calling out deniers: "Sixty years ago, when the Russians beat us into space, we didn’t deny Sputnik was up there. We didn’t argue about the science, or shrink our research and development budget. We built a space program almost overnight, and twelve years later, we were walking on the moon. "

I wanted to give that first line a standing ovation, but he didn’t stop with that… [emphasis original]

Inserted from <Crooks and Liars>

Click through for more great high points.

If you missed toe speech  or want to review, here’s the complete video.

Or if you prefer, here is the transcript of Obama’s 2016 SOTU address.

You know what I think.  What say you?

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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.

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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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Dec 312015
 

Today is the last day, before I start mistyping dates again.  I’m waiting for the grocery store to deliver in the next 3.5 hours.  The rental bed company should be here between Noon and 1:00 PM.  The company delivering my own hospital bed should be here shortly after 2:00 PM.  This is today’s only article, mostly because I’m busier than a Republican stealing poor children’s food.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:15 (average 5:31).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Upworthy: This short interactive film, titled "Act in Paris," immerses the viewer in a 360° tour of Alaska’s gorgeous melting glaciers.

Don’t worry — you don’t need one of those big clunky virtual reality helmets or Google Cardboard or any other extra-fancy tech to enjoy the experience.

As with all YouTube 360 videos, you can use the directional buttons on the screen or the arrow keys on your keyboard to guide your way around the glacier while you listen to the mellow tone of Leto’s voice.

 

While outdated, this presentation was too powerful not to share.

From Daily Kos: On June 20, 1979, solar panels were installed on the roof of the White House. It was the first time any president had done so, back when solar energy was just a concept. John Wihbey with Yale’s Climate Connections writes:

"For President Jimmy Carter, it had been nearly three years of tough fighting for clean energy. After a long rollout of green tax credits, the creation of a nascent Energy Department, and a pledge to conduct the “moral equivalent of war” (at the time, spoofed by critics as “MEOW”) against an energy crisis, Carter had built up scars. And there would be more to come. He had had battles with Congress and with his political enemies over green issues. But he had some victories, too, and this day brought one more, a small moment of symbolism."

According to President Carter, the solar energy had, “the power of the sun to enrich our lives as we move away from our crippling dependence on foreign oil.”

And who took them down? It was Saint Ronnie Ray Gun!!

From Alternet: In the nearly seven years since President Obama ordered Guantánamo’s closure, Republicans have blocked him at every turn. Now a new report sheds light on another obstacle in Obama’s way: his own Pentagon. According to Reuters, military brass have imposed bureaucratic hurdles to keep prisoners locked up and prevent foreign governments from taking them in. Scores of prisoners cleared for release have remained imprisoned for years as a result. We are joined by two guests: Charles Levinson, the Reuters reporter who broke this story, and Omar Farah, the lawyer for a Yemeni prisoner who was cleared for release five years ago but remains behind bars due to Pentagon interference.

 

Haven’t lefties been blaming Obama for this for too long?

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Dec 072015
 

Because I expect a very busy day today, preparing to return home on Wednesday, this is my only article today.

Religious Ecstasy:

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Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: Moments after its conclusion on Sunday night, President Obama’s speech about combating ISIS came under heavy criticism from people with zero better ideas.

The President’s proposals, ranging from coalition air strikes against ISIS to beefing up intelligence about potential terrorists, were blasted for being “nothing new,” with the harshest criticism coming from people with nothing new.

“I was incredibly frustrated hearing the President say he would destroy ISIS,” New Jersey Governor Chris Christie told CNN. “ISIS needs to be obliterated.”

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz shared Christie’s scathing assessment of Obama’s speech. “The President seems to think that ISIS will go away just by us bombing them,” Cruz said. “If I am President, I will bomb them so hard that will feel like they have been triple-bombed.”

Andy is reporting straight news again. 😉

From YouTube:

 

Click here for a transcript of Obama’s speech.  Your thoughts?

From NY Times: The international climate change negotiations entering their second and final week encompass a vast and complicated array of political, economic and legal questions. But at bottom, the talks boil down to two issues: trust and money.

In this global forum, no one questions the established science that greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels are warming the planet — or that both developed and developing economies must all eventually lower their greenhouse emissions to stave off a future that could wreak havoc on the world’s safety and economic stability.

In a major breakthrough, 184 governments have already submitted plans detailing how they will cut their domestic emissions after 2020.

Those pledges are expected to make up the core of a new accord, which could be signed next weekend. The agreement is also expected to require countries to return to the table at least once every 10 years with even more stringent emissions reduction pledges.

But can those governments be trusted to do what they say they will do?

Republicans are committing sedition to make the international community believe that the US cannot be trusted to keep our word.

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64 years later, the Republican Party is repeating the attack.

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Nov 102015
 

I’m still in considerable pain and hoping the donor site heals soon.  I’m in a wheelchair and have taken a lap around the unit chasing nurses.  I’m still to slow to ketch one, dang it!! Disappointed smile

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: On “ABC This Week,” Bernie was asked if he thought his agreements with Clinton outweighed his disagreements.

“Well, that’s — well, the answer is yes and no,” Sanders responded. “Yes, we do agree on a number of issues, and by the way, on her worst day, Hillary Clinton will be an infinitely better candidate and President than the Republican candidate on his best day.”

“But having said that, we have very significant differences and the key difference is I see a nation in which we have a grotesque level of income and wealth inequality,” 

Bernie is as right about this, as he is about virtually everything else. The very worst Democrats are infinitely better than the very best Republicans.

From NY Times: A Senate security officer stepped out of the December chill last year and delivered envelopes marked “Top Secret” to the Pentagon, the C.I.A., the State Department and the Justice Department. Inside each packet was a disc containing a 6,700-page classified report on the C.I.A.’s secret prison program and a letter from Senator Dianne Feinstein, urging officials to read the report to ensure that the lessons were not lost to time.

Today, those discs sit untouched in vaults across Washington, still in their original envelopes. The F.B.I. has not retrieved a copy held for it in the Justice Department’s safe. State Department officials, who locked up their copy and marked it “Congressional Record — Do Not Open, Do Not Access” as soon as it arrived, have not read it either.

Nearly a year after the Senate released a declassified 500-page summary of the report, the fate of the entire document remains in limbo, the subject of battles in the courts and in Congress. Until those disputes are resolved, the Justice Department has prohibited officials from the government agencies that possess it from even opening the report, effectively keeping the people in charge of America’s counterterrorism future from reading about its past. There is also the possibility that the documents could remain locked in a Senate vault for good.

In a letter to Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch last week, Ms. Feinstein, a California Democrat, said the Justice Department was preventing the government from “learning from the mistakes of the past to ensure that they are not repeated.”

The Elephant in this room is that, if DOJ goes after Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and the other Republican war criminals for their atrocities, little else will get done in the resulting Republican gridlock. Nevertheless, we have no moral authority as a nation, as long as Republicans keep getting away with war crimes!

from The Washington Post: The Obama administration will ask the Supreme Court to overturn a lower court injunction that has held up a new program that potentially would shield up to 5 million undocumented immigrants from deportation. The decision to take the case to the high court comes a day after a federal appeals panel ruled against the administration, keeping the new program on hold nearly a year after President Obama announced it.

“The Department of Justice remains committed to taking steps that will resolve the immigration litigation as quickly as possible,” said Patrick Rodenbush, a spokesman for the agency. “The Department disagrees with the Fifth Circuit’s adverse ruling and intends to seek further review from the Supreme Court of the United States. “

Administration officials said they hope the court will take the case in the spring and issue a ruling by June, which, if favorable, could allow the program to begin in the summer, with just months left in Obama’s term. Republican presidential candidates have said they would dismantle the program, adding urgency to the administration’s efforts to get it started.

Obama may well be making a mistake to put their fate in the hands ok SS Scalito, KKK Kennedy, Teabag Thomas, Republican Roberts, and worst of all, Schtupidenfuhrer Scalia, the five Injustices of SCROTUS, Republican Constitutional VD.

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Nov 072015
 

It has poured rain all day and tonight/tomorrow is supposed to be very heavy rain and wind.  Time to button up under the blankets with the fur babes.  I was teaching today and had the most delightful surprise . . . as I was leaving, my little Simon, who is 18 moths old, grabbed my legs in a big hug and said "I love you".  Oh my, didn't that just bring tears to my eyes!  I guess this is what it feels like to be a grandma! (I never had childrren of my own)  Tomorrow, their mother is going to a dinner at the church so I volunteered to watch the kids.  We're having pizza for dinner which I know they all like.  Sure beats cooking!

Puzzle — Today’s took me 3:13 (average 4:54). To do it, click here. How did you do? For those that don't know, we always do the 48 piece classic.

Short Takes

Alternet — John Oliver's "Last Week Tonight" is far and away the most refreshing thing on late-night TV. While other shows center around round-table chats and celebrity interviews, Oliver uses his massive platform to highlight overlooked but important political issues. Recently, he told CBS that his focus was "absurd public policies." 

By highlighting the absurdities of American institutions, he milks the injustice for a laugh while drawing the attention of millions of viewers to the issue. It's a brilliant combination that, when it fires on all cylinders, makes for great comedy and sometimes even triggers reforms. 

Here are his seven best segments. 

1. Net Neutrality 

Arguably Oliver's breakout hit, this segment masterfully dissected the knotty issue of net neutrality and its effect on free speech. Oliver explained why creating a two-tiered Internet was unfair, and even recruited the Internet's "vile commenters" to spam the FCC's website, which was taking public comment at the time. As a result, the website crashed and FCC Chair Tom Wheeler had to hilariously insist to the public that he "wasn't a dingo." 

Click through for the other 6 videos of John Oliver monologues which average 15 minutes each.  But each one is focused on different aspects of American life.  John is funny as usual.

The New Yorker — New reports indicating that Ben Carson might not have actually stabbed anyone during his youth have sent the retired neurosurgeon plummeting in the latest Republican Presidential polls.

Carson supporters, reeling from the news that their candidate’s past might have been devoid of stabbing, have deserted his candidacy in droves, suggesting that Republican voters viewed Carson’s stabbing as a key part of his résumé.

Indeed, a recent University of Minnesota poll showed that a full third of Carson supporters singled out “his stabbing experience” as a top reason for supporting him for the nation’s highest office.

But Andy, on the other hand, he tried to redeem himself by lying about being offered a scholarship to West Point. Click through for the rest.

Mother Jones — On Friday, President Obama announced his administration's decision to reject the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline, after seven years of intense deliberation over the pipeline's potential environmental risks. The announcement is widely viewed as a major victory for environmentalists and is sure to further burnish the president's legacy in combating climate change.

Click through to read Obama's speech.  And here is the Canadian government reaction as reported by the CBC.  As noted, the federal NDP were against the Keystone XL, but the Alberta NDP government of course was for it. Personally, I was not in favour of the pipeline, particularly the route that could affect the Ogallala Aquifer.  Oil companies do not have a good record with spills, on both sides of the border.

My Universe — Chillin'!

This pretty kitty is ready for his close-up.

Yeah Weekend cat

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Nov 062015
 

I spent the entire day working on my new computer.  I have barely scratched the surface.  They removed the bandages from my leg.  The pain was severe, but they were pleased with the results.  However, I am not returning to Vibra.  It turns out that I’m making too much progress for them.  I will be taken to a skilled nursing rehabilitation facility, anytime between Monday and ???.  I love the superior healing, but dislike the uncertainty.

I could not be more pleased that Obama put the kibosh on Keystone XL.  I plan to watch the Democratic Forum on my computer, as Legacy’s TV system does not include MSNBC.

Thanks and hugs!

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Oct 232015
 

Well, it seems that I have come down with a cold, sore throat and flu.  Just getting this Open Thread done has been an exercise in "write some, sleep a lot" and repeat.  I am not a happy camper. Tomorrow, Nameless will be producing the Open Thread which is so good!  I'll be back on Sunday.

Puzzle — Today’s took me 3:52 (average 6:42). To do it, click here. Diamonds are not necessarily a girl's best friend!

Short Takes 

Alternet — After Trey Gowdy called for proper decorum to be observed — then promptly broke it himself when he went directly after “Democrats” on the committee for performing a “lousy” investigation during his opening statement — ranking minority member of the House Select Committee on Benghazi Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) ripped into his Republican colleagues with an opening statement that painstakingly laid out clear evidence that this latest investigation into the attacks in Benghazi is a political charade meant to undercut Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

Hear "A visibly upset Rachel Maddow slammed House Republicans on Thursday for their handling of the Benghazi commission investigation, calling it a first for congressional probes of its kind."

Unfortunately, I can not embed the Rachel Maddow piece so you'll have to click on "Hear".  She certainly shows a historical perspective, and also the Republicans for what they are . . . a partisan band of maurading thugs! And isn't it just like a Republican to 'do as I say, not as I do'.

Mother Jones — Donald Trump loves to tweet about how climate change is a hoax, especially when he personally feels cold. Because, you know, if global warming is really real, then it will never be cold anywhere ever again. (Just kidding. Winter is still a thing.)

He was at it again on Monday, tweeting that since it was "really cold outside," we "could use a big fat dose of global warming!" Sick burn, Donald!

I wonder what this bloviating blowhard would say to anyone standing beside him who dared say they were warm when he was cold?  He has a total disregard for science.  And I haven't even mentioned Hurricane Patricia, a category 5 storm, which is bearing down on SW Mexico with one-minute sustained winds of up to 325 kilometres an hour, the strongest on record, according to meteorological officials.  Not only that, but the storm is expected to affect Texas.  This from the CBC

Hurricane Center spokesman Dennis Feltgen said Patricia also poses problems for Texas. Forecast models indicate that after the storm breaks up over land, remnants of its tropical moisture will likely combine with and contribute to heavy rainfall that is already soaking Texas independently of the hurricane, he said.

A flash flood watch is in effect through Sunday morning for the Dallas area, Austin and San Antonio, while a coastal flood warning was in effect through Friday night in Corpus Christi. Galveston was under a coastal flood advisory until Saturday night.

And tell us again Trump how global warming and climate change don't exist.  What a putz!  Please keep the people affected by this montrous hurricane in your thoughts and prayers.

The Guardian — Those hoping for a U-turn in Canada’s climate change policy after Stephen Harper’s crushing defeat are in for a reality check.

Trudeau has repudiated Harper’s vision of Canada as an “energy superpower”, promised to reverse devastating cuts to government science budgets, and fix the country’s reputation as a carbon bully in international climate negotiations.

But it would be a mistake to see Trudeau or the Liberals as climate champions. In his victory speech on Monday, there was no mention of climate change, and he was criticised for being vague on the issue during campaigning. 

This from a CBC article 

"I indicated to Mr. Obama that I felt it was important that Canada demonstrates a level of positive engagement on the environmental file on the international stage.

"I look forward to demonstrating that we have a Canadian government now that understands the way to build a strong economy is to protect and defend our environment at the same time."

It is hard to know exactly where Canada's new Prime Minister designate will fall on climate change. The Guardian makes one point that won't endear Trudeau to the environmental crowd, while the CBC shows a different side.  It will be 'hold his feet to the fire' time. 

My Universe

This is sooooooooo true!  

In my house, there is a steady parade behind me.  I had to give up shutting the door because otherwise, my three would make their own kitty door!

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