Apr 192015
 

I had another night with little sleep, due to street noise.  Therefore I want to get my articles written quickly, before I run out of gas.  80° highs are forecast today and tomorrow.  I guess this means I’ll be complaining about freezing weather in June.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:06 (average 4:10).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Upworthy: A real-life moment of unequal pay turns into a beautiful discussion of hard work, pressure, appreciating yourself, and … BASKETBALL.

 

Kudos! Why is it that guns and money evoke the most violent responses? The people making them are Republicans. That’s why! Her only mistake is that she should have been petting a CAT!

From Daily Kos: Sen. Ted Cruz goes full LaPierre:

"The 2nd Amendment to the Constitution isn’t for just protecting hunting rights, and it’s not only to safeguard your right to target practice. It is a Constitutional right to protect your children, your family, your home, our lives, and to serve as the ultimate check against governmental tyranny — for the protection of liberty," Cruz wrote to supporters in a fundraising email on Thursday, under the subject line "2nd Amendment against tyranny."

This "insurrectionist" argument, as Second Amendment expert and UCLA law professor Adam Winkler calls it, is popular among passionate gun owners and members of the National Rifle Association.

Second Amendment solutions are being championed by Republican candidates again.

From Alternet: Men’s rights blogger: Women with short hair should be monitored by the authorities.

Men’s rights nutjob Roosh V,  who blogs under the moniker “Pick Up Artist,” always has extremely helpful suggestions for women. He thinks women would take more responsibility for themselves if rape on private property was decriminalized, for starters. Thanks, Roosh! Or should we call you Mr. V? How exactly decriminalizing rape would help women is kind of murky.

This week, the Rooshter made an even more bizarre suggestion for how law enforcement should occupy their time, now that they’ve been freed up from all that pesky rape stuff. The authorities should be alerted when women cut their hair short. This, he says, is an act of self harm. Worse still, it hurts men (the group Roosh actually purports to care about). When women cut their hair short, they are trying to appear less fertile and therefore less attractive to men, he reasons.

Here it is from the horse’s (ass) mouth:

“If a woman cuts her hair to a short length, or shaves it outright in a Skrillex haircut, we can now confidently say that she is making herself appear less fertile, less beautiful, and less healthy. A woman cutting off healthy hair is one step away from literal cutting of her skin with a sharp object, because both behaviors denote a likely mental illness where the woman presents herself to society as more damaged than her genetic condition would indicate, suggesting that she has suffered environmental damage that has reduced her overall fitness. She must be monitored by state authorities so she doesn’t continue to hurt herself.”

Stupefying, no?

This is just the last of five Republican lunacies from last week alone. Click through for the other four.

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Unlike years past, I have not been able to find Republicans celebrating bombing the Murrah building with open-carry demonstrations this year.

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Apr 142015
 

When I dug into my corporate reporting for my volunteer group, I discovered I have until mid-May to get that done, so I decided to blog instead, in addition to delving into the mess I need to tackle for grocery delivery day tomorrow.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:38 (average 4:30).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: South Carolina wants to be able to continue to ban gays and lesbians from marrying each other. They want to do that so much that they filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court that they should continue to be able to do so. In it, they make an "originalist" argument that if the Constitution is read just as its drafters understood it, gays can be discriminated against because women can be discriminated against. Mark Joseph Stern at Slate has all the crazy.

Here’s the gist of South Carolina’s fascinatingly sexist argument. The state wants to prove that the 14th Amendment—which guarantees "equal protection of the laws" to every "person"—was not intended to displace state marriage laws. And what did those laws look like at the time? One major feature: In many states, married women were not permitted to own property or enter into contracts and had no legal existence apart from their husbands. According to South Carolina, the framers of the 14th Amendment explicitly preserved the rights of states to deprive married women of the ability to function independently from her husband. This right to deprive married women of basic liberties, South Carolina argues, is enshrined in the 10th Amendment and is not at all undercut by the 14th Amendment’s guarantee of equality.

Were SCROTUS (Republican Constitutional VD) to agree with this brief, not only would gays become the subjects of continued discrimination, but also, "barefoot and pregnant" laws would sweep those states, where Republicans have complete control.

From The New Yorker: Hillary Clinton has followed up the official announcement of her candidacy with a new campaign ad featuring nothing but kittens.

The sixty-second spot stars an assortment of kittens—tabbies, calicoes, Siamese, and a dozen other breeds—in a variety of adorable vignettes.

At various points in the advertisement, the kittens are shown playing in a sock drawer, tangled up in yarn, and chasing a duckling.

Clinton herself appears only in the final seconds of the ad, saying merely, “Hi. I’m Hillary.”

Andy, I certainly hope my kitty cousins are not exploited in such a shameful manner. Wouldn’t it be better to portray the kittens using Republicans as a cat box? I might get in on that action myself!!

From NY Times: One by one, four former Blackwater security contractors wearing blue jumpsuits and leg irons stood before a federal judge on Monday and spoke publicly for the first time since a deadly 2007 shooting in Iraq.

The men had been among several private American security guards who fired into Baghdad’s crowded Nisour Square on Sept. 16, 2007, and last October they were convicted of killing 14 unarmed Iraqis in what prosecutors called a wartime atrocity. Yet on Monday, as they awaited sentences that they knew would send them to prison for most if not all of their lives, they defiantly asserted their innocence…

…The judge, Royce C. Lamberth, strongly disagreed, sentencing Mr. Slatten to life in prison and handing 30-year sentences to the three others.

My only regret is that the top war criminals, Bush and Cheney, were not sentenced with them.

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Mar 132015
 

I have a cold or the flu.  I’m running a fever and have nasal congestion in addition to severe COPD.  I got it from chilling myself outside a bureaucrat’s office.  On the other had, it could just be what I get for turning 67 on Friday the  13th.  Obviously, this is today’s only article.  Some of the material is slightly outdated, but, as bad as I feel, it’s the best I can do.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:22 (average 4:52).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From The New Yorker: Stating that “their continuing hostilities are a threat to world peace,” Iran has offered to mediate talks between congressional Republicans and President Obama.

Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, made the offer one day after Iran received what he called a “worrisome letter” from Republican leaders, which suggested to him that “the relationship between Republicans and Obama has deteriorated dangerously.”

“Tensions between these two historic enemies have been high in recent years, but we believe they are now at a boiling point,” Khamenei said. “As a result, Iran feels it must offer itself as a peacemaker.”

He said that his nation was the “logical choice” to jumpstart negotiations between Obama and the Republicans because “it has become clear that both sides currently talk more to Iran than to each other.”

He invited Obama and the Republicans to meet in Tehran to hash out their differences and called on world powers to force the two bitter foes to the bargaining table, adding, “It is time to stop the madness.”

I’m afraid it won’t work Andy. Some terrorists are just too far gone for Iran to be able to help.

From Media Matters: Sean Hannity lectured criminal defense and civil rights attorney Tamara Holder about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s impact on women’s issues, telling Holder, "let me educate you."…

…Hannity’s lecturing became so egregious, his female producer challenged him, asking if he was treating Holder this way because she is a woman:

 

If women follow the advice Hannity is giving, they will have nothing to do with him.

From Daily Kos: Six years too late, media call congressional Republicans ‘traitors’

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Now Republicans are claiming they were just being "cheeky". That’s the truth, if the cheeks in question are the ones, between which their heads are inserted.

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Mar 032015
 

It’s already turning into one of those weeks, where I get to put two pounds of you know what in a one pound bag.  I won’t be covering the Butcher Bibi Show until tomorrow, as I have had insufficient time to research it.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:39 (average 4:42),  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From NBC: The execution of the only woman on Georgia’s death row was postponed late Monday because of a problem with the lethal-injection drugs. Kelly Gissendaner was waiting to hear if the U.S. Supreme Court would halt her execution when the Georgia Department of Corrections called it off about 11 p.m.

"Prior to the execution, the drugs were sent to an independent lab for testing of potency," the agency said. "The drugs fell within the acceptable testing limits."

But, officials said, in the hours leading up to the execution, the chemicals appeared cloudy.

This only a temporary reprieve from this barbaric state-sponsored murder.

From The New Yorker: On the eve of the Israeli Prime Minister’s address to Congress, House Speaker John Boehner used a joint press conference to praise Benjamin Netanyahu, calling him “our closest and most important ally in the fight against President Obama.”

“Even as the President threatens us with provocative acts, Prime Minister Netanyahu’s support for us has been unwavering,” Boehner said. “He understands what many of us have long known: that peace with this enemy can only be achieved through total victory.”

Netanyahu had equally high praise for Boehner, saying that “no one has been more steadfast and dedicated in the struggle against your President.”

“This foe is not to be trusted or appeased,” Netanyahu said. “Your resolute refusal to find any common ground with him whatsoever has earned my undying respect.”

As the press conference drew to a conclusion, Boehner appeared to fight back tears as he called Netanyahu “a brother in arms” in the ongoing hostilities with Obama.

Of course neither actually said that, but Andy seems to have X-Ray vision to see between their ears.

From Upworthy: When extreme belief systems are allowed to dictate our laws, it’s not difficult to end up in this kind of situation.

 

Republican Supply-side pseudo-Christians azre fighting to make the US like the Philippines and El Salvador. Kudos to the Center for Reproductive Rights.

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Mar 012015
 

I’m running late today, because I had to collect all the data and prepare the graphics for tomorrow’s Monthly Report.  My helper did not show up yesterday either.  She probably had to work.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:29 (average 5:48).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: The pension woes in NJ are, to a great extent, the result of past governors’ actions, but IMO Christie owned it as of his 2011 law/union negotiation package (that he is trying to renege on this year).

His argument that "I don’t have to abid by my own agreement because my own agreement is unconstitutional!!!  Ha, ha, suck it, ya liberal union pensioners, gotta pay for dem tax cuts!" is a pretty bizarre argument for a lawyer/ex state’s attorney to make.

I don’t think it is going to fly. How’d you like this guy as your President?

Christie gets schooled by judge

In January, attorneys for the state argued that Christie could not make full payments because the 2011 law was violated a debt limitation clause and an appropriations clause in the state constitution.

But in today’s ruling, Jacobson said Christie "now takes the unusual position in this court of claiming that this legislative contractual guarantee, which embodied significant reforms for which he took substantial credit with great national fanfare, violates the New Jersey constitution."

Jacobson also ruled that the state must reimburse the unions for legal costs.

It’s a shame that they can’t charge PIGnocchio with the legal fees, instead of the NJ taxpayers.

From USA Today: Rand Paul won a high-profile straw poll for a third straight year Saturday, capping an annual conservative conference at which delegates argued about how to turn their ideas into a presidential victory in 2016.

The Kentucky senator carried 25.7% in the Conservative Political Action Conference poll, while Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker finished second with 21.4% — a closer-than-expected tally in this early test of political strength among conservative Republican activists.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, finished third with 11.5%, followed closely by retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson with 11.4%.

Former Florida governor Jeb Bush — perhaps the most criticized candidate at this conservative conclave — finished fifth at 8.3%.

Other potential presidential candidates — including Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, and Rick Perry — had less than 4% in the straw poll. Paul also won CPAC contests in 2013 and 2014.

This about what I’d expect from CPUKE. What a foul collection od sold souls they are!

From Right Wing Watch:

An anti-abortion panel at CPAC this afternoon was clearly gunning for a spot on the main stage next year. Americans United for Life President Charmaine Yoest, Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, and Darla St. Martin, co-executive director of the National Right to Life Committee, made the case that their movement is winning and that they can fill a room with activists.

Dannenfelser started the discussion by declaring that "abortion-centered feminism is dead."

The three credited their carefully formulated, incremental strategy that has brought them a slew of state-level victories cutting back on abortion access and pushing narrowly-tailored abortion bans meant to push back on Roe v. Wade in the courts while winning public opinion to their side.

I think these dress wearing Republicans are unworthy to be called women.

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Feb 232015
 

I’m pretty buried with preparing my grocery list for this week, housework, and getting ready for my volunteer day in prison on Thursday.  My mail-order pharmacy got back to me.  They admitted that they were at fault, apologized for my inconvenience, have removed the charge for the wrong medication, and are not charging me for the correct medication, which they mailed this morning.  They exceeded my expectations.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:12 (average 5:11).  To do it, click here.  How dod you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: Why would anyone vote Republican? Well, here are 10 reasons.

1. You are a bigot

It’s true that not all Republicans are bigots. But if you ARE a bigot, the Republican party will be much more your group than the Democratic party. Remember that there are lots of ways to be a bigot: You could be a racist, a homophobe, an Islamophobe, or lots of other things.

2. You like eating, drinking and breathing poison.

Many Republicans are calling for or voting for shrinking or eliminating agencies that protect us against poison. They seem to think that the corporations will do the right thing, without any pressure from the government. Uh huh. Read The Jungle.  Look at the way Monsanto is hiding facts about Round Up. Look at food safety and outbreaks of E. Coli. 

Corporations exist to make money. They will do so any way they can. The government needs to stop them from doing so in ways that hurt people.

3. You think the rich don’t have enough money

The idea that giving more money to rich people (via tax breaks) will help poor people is nonsensical and has been shown wrong time and again in history. Huge tax breaks for the rich (a la George Bush) don’t work.

These aye just the top three. Click through for the other seven.

From NY Times: It was a memorable political ad [Barf Bag Alert!!]: Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin spoke directly into the camera in a 30-second spot last fall and called abortion an “agonizing” decision. He described himself as pro-life but, borrowing the language of the abortion rights movement, pointed to legislation he signed that leaves “the final decision to a woman and her doctor.”

That language was gone when Mr. Walker met privately with Iowa Republicans in a hotel conference room last month, according to a person who attended the meeting. There, he highlighted his early support for a “personhood amendment,” which defines life as beginning at conception and would effectively prohibit all abortions and some methods of birth control.

Mr. Walker has quickly vaulted into the top tier of likely Republican candidates in the presidential race, surging on the reputation he earned by taking on labor unions and surviving a bitter recall election in a swing state.

Was the Fartfuhrer of Fitzwalkerstan lying in that political ad last fall? Was he lying to Iowa Republicans? Has he ever told the truth?

From Crooks and Liars: Unlike CNN’s Gloria Borger who brought Paul Wolfowitz on this Sunday for some Republican rehab, MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry took former governor and GOP 2016 presidential candidate Jeb Bush to task for seeking advice from the former Deputy Secretary of Defense and reminded us of the fact that he was wrong about just about everything when he was working for Bush’s brother.

 

MHP and I have something in common. I also slammed Strike Three for tapping Wrong Way Wolfie.

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Feb 152015
 

I’ll be brief today, because I have pants-load of chores to complete.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:18 (average 4:55).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos: For Katrina Shealy, being South Carolina’s only female state senator means facing some unique challenges. The main one seems to be fellow state senator Tom Corbin.

That’s when Corbin – no stranger to making bizarre statements –  is said to have begun needling his lone female colleague regarding her gender.

“I see it only took me two years to get you wearing shoes,” Corbin told [State Sen. Katrina Shealy], who was elected in 2012 as a petition candidate.

This was apparently an oblique barefoot and pregnant reference, and a staffer notes that "he makes comments like that all the time."

At one point in the conversation – which quickly escalated into a confrontation – Shealy is said to have angrily asked Corbin where he “got off” attacking women. […]

“Well, you know God created man first,” Corbin said, reportedly smirking at Shealy.  “Then he took the rib out of man to make woman.  And you know, a rib is a lesser cut of meat.”

He was lying when he said he wanted her wearing shoes.

From CBS: The Democratic Party has decided to hold its 2016 presidential nominating convention in Philadelphia.

"In addition to their commitment to a seamless and safe convention, Philadelphia’s deep rooted place in American history provides a perfect setting for this special gathering," DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said in a statement. "I cannot wait to join Democrats across the country to celebrate our shared values, lay out a Democratic vision for the future, and support our nominee."

Because of this choice, expect a mass exodus of hookers from Pennsylvania to Ohio, where the "family values" Republicans are holding their convention.

From Think Progress: A Mississippi state lawmaker said he opposed putting more money into elementary schools because he came from a town where “all the blacks are getting food stamps and what I call ‘welfare crazy checks.’ They don’t work.”

In an interview with the Clarion-Ledger regarding education funding, state Rep. Gene Alday (R) stated his opposition to a push to increase funding to improve elementary school reading scores. Alday implied that increasing education funding for children in black families would be pointless.

This is how the Republican Party Reaches out to African Americans.

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