Jun 302015
 

I feel exhausted.  My COPD is flaring up severely.  Every time I try to sleep, coughing prevents it.  Today I have an all MSNBC Short Takes section for you., and a second article.  Tomorrow is a grocery delivery day.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:52 (average 4:55).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Fantasy Football Recruiting:

We still need two new players for Lefty Blog Friends, our fantasy football league.  How about you?  For more information, click here.

Short Takes:

From MSNBC: GOP candidates resist gay marriage

Republican presidential hopefuls vow to continue the fight against marriage equality despite the Supreme Court’s ruling. Ed Schultz, Rep. Mark Pocan, Mike Rogers and Tobias Wolff talk it out.

 

Hypocrites all! Mike Rogers had it right: "It looks like sheer InsaniTEA." Retention elections for SCROTUS, Republican Constitutional VD, is a terrible idea. I would support however term limits for both Democratic Justices and Republican Injustices.

From MSNBC: Who is burning black churches?

The FBI and ATF are now helping investigate a string of fires at black churches in the South since the massacre in Charleston, at least three of which are being investigated as arson, prompting #WhoIsBurningBlackChurches to trend nationally on Twitter.

 

Chris didn’t quite come out and say what he is thinking. I did. See my cartoon below.

From MSNBC: Top tier GOP candidate Trump dealt blow to business for Mexico remarks

Rachel Maddow reviews the latest developments in the crowded Republican 2016 primary field, including Donald Trump polling in second place nationally but suffering for his remarks about Mexican immigrants, with NBC now severing ties with him.

 

Kudos to NBC. Nobody has ever deserves to get fired more than Hairball does. But I want him on that debate stage to give the clown car a flat tire. I hope PIGnocchio is indicted before the debates begin, Morfan has him perfectly pegged.

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0630Cartoon

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Jun 222015
 

Outside there is a huge racket as the maintenance people are working on my side of the building this week.  I’m not complaining, but I do hate being blasted out of a cat nap, after sleeping poorly, and if I want to do any solar basking, I’m likely to get drenched while walking out of range.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

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

Fantasy Football Recruiting:

We still need two new players for Lefty Blog Friends, our fantasy football league.  How about you?  For more information, click here.

Short Takes:

From Robert Reich: #11. WHY MEDICARE ISN’T THE PROBEM; IT’S THE SOLUTION

 

The Reich on the left pulled a fast one on me and came up with number 11, but true to form, our Reich is right, and the Reich in the right, the Republican Reich, is wrong. I could not find this on MoveOn, so please click through to Robert Reich, and share it from there.

From Daily Kos (classic: 1/2013): A reporter for NPR discovered a strange new light (see circled area above) where there used to be only North Dakota grassland.  The light is produced by a massive 15,000 square mile area of fracking natural gas flareoffs produced by over 150 companies who have determined that it’s cheaper to burn-off about 29% of the natural gas that is produced by their oil wells.  

The current levels of burning gas from the field inject two million tons of carbon dioxide into the air each year which is the equivalent amount of pollution caused by 2.5 million cars.  The flares produce carbon oxides, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide and particulates.

The burnoff is equivalent to 30% of the total U.S. natural gas production. Currently, there is no legislation that requires fracking companies to recapture the natural gas they produce through fracking, although it’s only slightly more expensive to recapture the natural gas.  Most of the companies have obtained government permission for the flare-offs with annual renewals.  The industry argues that until the wells are completed it’s too expensive to recapture the natural gas. 

NASA image acquired April 18 - October 23, 2012

This image of the United States of America at night is a composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi NPP satellite in April and October 2012. The image was made possible by the new satellite’s “day-night band” of the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS), which detects light in a range of wavelengths from green to near-infrared and uses filtering techniques to observe dim signals such as city lights, gas flares, auroras, wildfires, and reflected moonlight.

“Nighttime light is the most interesting data that I’ve had a chance to work with,” says Chris Elvidge, who leads the Earth Observation Group at NOAA’s National Geophysical Data Center. “I’m always amazed at what city light images show us about human activity.” His research group has been approached by scientists seeking to model the distribution of carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels and to monitor the activity of commercial fishing fleets. Biologists have examined how urban growth has fragmented animal habitat. Elvidge even learned once of a study of dictatorships in various parts of the world and how nighttime lights had a tendency to expand in the dictator’s hometown or province.

Named for satellite meteorology pioneer Verner Suomi, NPP flies over any given point on Earth's surface twice each day at roughly 1:30 a.m. and p.m. The polar-orbiting satellite flies 824 kilometers (512 miles) above the surface, sending its data once per orbit to a ground station in Svalbard, Norway, and continuously to local direct broadcast users distributed around the world. Suomi NPP is managed by NASA with operational support from NOAA and its Joint Polar Satellite System, which manages the satellite's ground system.

NASA Earth Observatory image by Robert Simmon, using Suomi NPP VIIRS data provided courtesy of Chris Elvidge (NOAA National Geophysical Data Center). Suomi NPP is the result of a partnership between NASA, NOAA, and the Department of Defense. Caption by Mike Carlowicz.

Instrument: Suomi NPP - VIIRS 

Credit: <b><a href="http://www.earthobservatory.nasa.gov/" rel="nofollow"> NASA Earth Observatory</a></b>

<b>Click here to view all of the <a href="http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/NightLights/" rel="nofollow"> Earth at Night 2012 images </a></b>

<b>Click here to <a href="http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/NaturalHazards/view.php?id=79800 " rel="nofollow"> read more </a> about this image </b> 

<b><a href="http://www.nasa.gov/audience/formedia/features/MP_Photo_Guidelines.html"rel="nofollow">NASA image use policy.</a></b>

<b><a href="http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/home/index.html" rel="nofollow">NASA Goddard Space Flight Center</a></b> enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission.

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What a bunch of mother frackers!! Since this is visible from outer space, at least aliens touring the solar system will know that the earth is not a safe place to land, without having to risk being gunned down by a Republican Ammosexuals.

From NY Times: The leader of a white supremacist group that has been linked to Dylann Roof, the suspect in the murder of nine African-Americans in a Charleston, S.C., church last week, has donated tens of thousands of dollars to Republican campaigns, including those of 2016 presidential contenders such as Ted Cruz, Rick Santorum and Rand Paul, records show.

"Uranus Inspector" said he’ll return the money, and I suspect that "Idiot, Son of Idiot, Named after Idiot" and "Frothmeister" will both do likewise, although none had any objection to taking money, in the first place, from an organization widely known as White Supremacist and listed as such by SPLC. They will get the money funneled back into their campaigns through white supremacist Republicans that haven’t been caught killing anyone recently.  Click through for more Republicans in thrall to murderous white supremacists.

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Jun 092015
 

Once upon a time, Dorothy wanted nothing more that to be returned to her home and family in Kansas.  But that was before Sam Brownback and his sidekick Kris Kobach, aka KoBIATCH made Kansas a Republican Reich.  Now Dorothy says, “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore”, and even Toto wants out!

0609Kansas

On Thursday, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed a bill that threatens the entire state’s judiciary with destruction if it rules against a law he favors. Brownback has spent much of his tenure attempting to curb the state supreme court and consolidate power in the executive branch. Thursday’s startling maneuver suggests the deeply conservative governor has no compunction about simply obliterating separation of powers when another branch of government gets in his way.

The Kansas trouble started in 2014, when the state supreme court ruled that the disparity between school funding in rich and poor districts violated the state constitution. The justices ordered the legislature to fix the problem. Soon after, the legislature passed an administrative law that stripped the supreme court of its authority to appoint local chief judges and set district court budgets. (Instead, district court judges—who are often quite conservative—were allowed to elect their own chief judge.)

Arriving shortly after the school funding ruling, this law was widely seen as a retaliation against the court—and a warning. In their first ruling, the justices stopped short of declaring that the school system as a whole was constitutionally underfunded. But the court acknowledged that it would one day answer that question. And if the justices mandate more school funding, the legislature will have to raise taxes, a step few legislators are eager to take.

The administrative law, then, was likely an effort to scare the court out of issuing a dramatic ruling in favor of greater school funding…

Inserted from <Slate>

Rachel Maddow has this story and discusses the new powers he gave to Kris KoBIATCH with Dave Helling.

Although Toto is just a dawg, I don’t blame him one bit.  This cat would want out too!

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Jun 092015
 

When the weatherman said that today would be about 10° cooler, he lied, so before I actually post this article, I will have returned from kitty solar basking.  I’m certainly blessed that I don’t have to be out and about today, but I am tired, because we had another fire alarm in the wee hours that trashed my sleep.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

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

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Mitch McConnell, the guy who was going to make the Senate work again and prove that Republicans can govern. When it comes to filling judicial vacancies, he’s choosing not to.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Thursday that he doesn’t expect to confirm any of Obama’s circuit court nominees for the remainder of his time in office, a blow to White House efforts to fill empty federal court seats despite working with a Republican-controlled Senate.

In an interview with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt, McConnell was asked about judicial confirmations.

"So far, the only judges we’ve confirmed have been federal district judges that have been signed off on by Republican senators," McConnell said. Asked if he expects that to be the case through 2016, McConnell said, "I think that’s highly likely, yeah."

We have never seen such extreme examples of incompetence to govern as today’s Republican Party keep demonstrating.

From NY Times: Community leaders in Cleveland, distrustful of the criminal justice system, said Monday that they would not wait for prosecutors to decide whether to file charges against the police officers involved in the fatal shooting of 12-year-old Tamir Rice last year. Instead, they will invoke a seldom-used Ohio law and go directly to a judge to request murder charges against the officers.

The highly unusual move is the latest sign that some African-Americans in Cleveland and around the country have lost confidence in a system that they see as too quick to side with police officers accused of using excessive force against blacks.

Why are black community leaders so distrustful? Could it possibly be because police continue to murder innocent black people with impunity? I wish the black community leaders success in their strife for justice.

From Desmoines Register: When just one Iowan showed up to Rick Santorum’s 2 p.m. campaign stop at a restaurant here Monday, the winner of the 2012 Iowa caucuses made a quick decision: Might as well order lunch.

That’s one more Iowan than the King of Froth deserves!

Cartoon:

0609Cartoon

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Jun 012015
 

Another month has arrived and it promises to be a very busy one.  I’ve decided not to do a Monthly Report for May.  Activity was a little down, which was not surprising between volunteer work and medical mayhem.  I’m still feeling very tired out.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:15 (average 4:19).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From NY Times: A mere 240 people live in the rural northeast Iowa town of Kensett, so when more than 300 crowded into the community center on Saturday night to hear Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, many driving 50 miles, the cellphones of Democratic leaders statewide began to buzz…

…The first evidence that Mrs. Clinton could face a credible challenge in the Iowa presidential caucuses appeared late last week in the form of overflow crowds at Mr. Sanders’s first swing through that state since declaring his candidacy for the Democratic nomination. He drew 700 people to an event on Thursday night in Davenport, for instance — the largest rally in the state for any single candidate this campaign season, and far more than the 50 people who attended a rally there on Saturday with former Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland.

Considering Iowa’s record of picking losers, I’m not sure whether this is a good sign for Bernie or not.

From The New Yorker: The National Security Agency is compensating for the expiration of its power to collect the American people’s personal information by logging on to Facebook, the agency confirmed on Monday.

The director of the N.S.A., Admiral Michael S. Rogers, said that when parts of the Patriot Act expired at midnight on Sunday, intelligence analysts immediately stopped collecting mountains of phone metadata and started reading billions of Facebook updates instead.

“From a surveillance point of view, the transition has been seamless,” Rogers said.

While the N.S.A. has monitored Facebook in the past, it is now spending twenty-four hours a day sifting through billions of baby pictures, pet videos, and photographs of recently enjoyed food to detect possible threats to the United States.

“Those status updates contain everything we want to know,” Rogers said.  “In many cases, a good deal more than we want to know.”

Dang! Andy has documented the death of privacy!!

From Right Wing Watch: Former Pennsylvania senator and GOP presidential hopeful Rick Santorum said yesterday at a campaign stop in Iowa that he worries “about anti-government rhetoric,” according to a local paper and to Washington Post reporter James Hohmann, who tweeted about the remark:

Really? The Santorum we know has spent the entire Obama presidency stoking mistrust of the federal government. Here are just fifteen examples, in no particular order, of Santorum’s anti-government rhetoric in the past few years.

Barf Bag Alert!! Santorum Bag Alert!

 

This article has a bunch of video and audio clips of Rich "Google my name" Santorum spewing anti-government froth. Click through, if you can stomach it.

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May 262015
 

Tomorrow morning, I’ll be leaving for a prison volunteer trip to Salem, and I will not return until Friday afternoon.  Therefore, for the next three days, expect an Open Thread at most, and more likely, just a personal update.  Let me wish you an excellent week, in advance.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:01 (average 5:58).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: In the aftermath of Irish voters legalizing gay marriage, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has used his emergency powers to ban all Irish products from the state.

The sweeping trade sanctions will prevent popular Irish products, such as Jameson whiskey and Guinness Extra Stout, from being sold in Louisiana.

Jindal explained that breaking off trade with Ireland was necessary to protect the sanctity of marriage in Louisiana.

Andy has exposed a Republican disaster. Without Jameson, Agent Orange will be incapable of visiting Louisiana.

From NY Times: They are only four words in a 900-page law: “established by the state.”

But it is in the ambiguity of those four words in the Affordable Care Act that opponents found a path to challenge the law, all the way to the Supreme Court.

How those words became the most contentious part of President Obama’s signature domestic accomplishment has been a mystery. Who wrote them, and why? Were they really intended, as the plaintiffs in King v. Burwell claim, to make the tax subsidies in the law available only in states that established their own health insurance marketplaces, and not in the three dozen states with federal exchanges?

The answer, from interviews with more than two dozen Democrats and Republicans involved in writing the law, is that the words were a product of shifting politics and a sloppy merging of different versions. Some described the words as “inadvertent,” “inartful” or “a drafting error.” But none supported the contention of the plaintiffs, who are from Virginia.

By now most Republican politicians realize that, if the fascist five Injustices of SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) invalidate Obamacare, it will be a disaster for the Republican Party. However, they were so effective at brainwashing rabid sheeple to hate it, that they now have to live in fear of their own base.

From Washington Post: You may not have realized it, but a large cohort of Americans did something brave this month. For years — in some cases, decades — these lonely, marginalized souls had repressed their shameful feelings, hiding them from the world.

Then May came along, and they finally decided to come out of the closet.

As liberals.

That’s right: A large chunk of Americans recently decided to come out as “liberal” — socially liberal, to be specific. As a result, for the first time on record, self-proclaimed social liberals are no longer outnumbered by their conservative counterparts.

That’s according to a new Gallup poll that finds the shares of American adults considering themselves “socially liberal” and “socially conservative” each total 31 percent. (The remaining respondents either called their views “moderate” or had no opinion.) Gallup has been tracking these categories since 1999, and the latest numbers simultaneously signify the highest share ever recorded for liberals and the lowest recorded for conservatives.

I’m one, and I was admitting it when it was still a very dirty word. What shocks me is the 31% that are still goose stepping to the drum beat of Republican hate.

Cartoon:

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How Republicans celebrated Memorial Day.

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May 242015
 

I suppose the most positive thing I can say this morning, is that I have had no more surprises.  Nevertheless, my tasks seem endless, so I’ll be brief.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:04 (average 5:15).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: The soon to be officially announced presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, from Vermont, and former MN Republican Congresswoman, Michele Bachmann, from Uranus, were guests on The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer. The show aired just before President Obama addressed the nation with his 2014 State Of The Union Speech. Sanders discussed issues that included income equality, minimum wage, education, social security, jobs creation, corporate wealth and tax evasion. Bachmann, a known liar (documented by Politifact), read from the repetitive Right-Wing, Koch-Sucking Declaration of Co-Dependance, while interjecting something about ‘Australia.’ She stuck to the GOP script and was completely unyielding to a mature, courteous, and educated debate.

Batshit Bag Alert!!

One key lie Batshit B attempted is that the lack of jobs is due to years of Obama’s "failed policies". What has stalled the recovery is years of Republican obstruction, sabotage and sedition. Bernie 1 – Tag Team Blitzer & Batshit B 0.

Another from Daily Kos: Yesterday we covered Pastor Matt Makela, the anti-gay Michigan pastor who was outed on Grindr.

Today a young man and his mother have stepped forward with their own story about Pastor Matt Makela. Tyler Kish was a teenage boy struggling to come to terms with his sexuality and sought counsel from Pastor Makela. His advice nearly caused Tyler to commit suicide:

"If he was going to go to hell for being gay then he might as well go to hell by committing suicide," Jennifer Kish said, regarding what Makela told her son.

He didn’t stop there:

Jennifer Kish said the pastor also became vocal on social media about how he felt her son being gay was wrong and that as a parent she shouldn’t support him.

I have zero problem with Pastor Mark Makela being gay. However, I support outing him and causing him to lose his job to stop his hate-filled behavior, as a Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christian hypocrite, from harming more parishioners.

From NY Times: After vigorous debate and intense last-minute pressure by Republican leaders, the Senate on Saturday rejected legislation that would curb the federal government’s bulk collection of phone records…

…The Senate will reconvene on May 31 to try again. But any extension is far from certain to get approval from the House, which is in recess until June 1, with at least one member threatening to block it.

Help keep the good news good. Harass your Senators.

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