Saturday, February 28, 2009

Headlines - Saturday

We're number one, we're number one! Utah leads nation in online porn purchases! 

A study of the online porn purchases nationwide by Harvard Business School uncovered something surprising (or maybe not). Residents of right-wing religious areas purchase more porn than those in liberal areas:

States where a majority of residents agreed with the statement "I have old-fashioned values about family and marriage," bought 3.6 more subscriptions per thousand people than states where a majority disagreed.

Those states that do consume the most porn tend to be more conservative and religious than states with lower levels of consumption, the study finds.

"Some of the people who are most outraged turn out to be consumers of the very things they claimed to be outraged by," [Benjamin Edelman of Harvard Business School] says.

For example, the study found that porn purchases in churchgoing areas declined dramatically on Sundays. And guess which religion appears to be the most porn-obsessed? Yup, Mormons:

The biggest consumer, Utah, averaged 5.47 adult content subscriptions per 1000 home broadband users; Montana bought the least with 1.92 per 1000. "The differences here are not so stark," Edelman says.

Number 10 on the list was West Virginia at 2.94 subscriptions per 1000, while number 41, Michigan, averaged 2.32.

Eight of the top 10 pornography consuming states gave their electoral votes to John McCain in last year's presidential election – Florida and Hawaii were the exceptions. While six out of the lowest 10 favoured Barack Obama.

Wait, there's more:

Residents of 27 states that passed laws banning gay marriages boasted 11% more porn subscribers than states that don't explicitly restrict gay marriage.

To get a better handle on other associations between social attitudes and pornography consumption, Edelman melded his data with a previous study on public attitudes toward religion.

States where a majority of residents agreed with the statement "I have old-fashioned values about family and marriage," bought 3.6 more subscriptions per thousand people than states where a majority disagreed. A similar difference emerged for the statement "AIDS might be God's punishment for immoral sexual behavior."

The study was based on analysis of the ZIP codes of customers of a large online porn emporium.

Congratulations, America! It was too big to fail, but now that it has, you're about to become a 36 percent stakeholder in yet another useless bank. [CNN Money]
Oh, how very racist of you to find this racist!
Brave watermelon mayor will resign
The free speech martyr Dean Grose, a man condemned for finding watermelons the most naturally hilarious garden item of all, will have to resign his mayoralty. Grose rose to national prominence as just the latest of Southern California idiots to circulate some bit of "ha ha, because he's black!" piece of trash and then claim they had no idea they were exploiting racial stereotypes. As of Monday, Grose will resign his position and go to work on a watermelon farm in Hell as part of the president's new spending package. [AP]
funny pictures of cats with captions
Cue the wingnut head explosions - h/t Dick
President Obama delivered to Congress yesterday a $3.6 trillion spending plan that would finance vast new investments in health care, energy independence and education by raising taxes on the oil and gas industry, hedge fund managers, multinational corporations and nearly 3 million of the nation's top earners.

So first Bobby Jindal gave the Republican response to President Obama's speech on Tuesday and sounded EXACTLY like Kenneth the page from "30 Rock". Then Jack McBrayer (aka Kenneth Parcell aka Kenneth the Page) responded to the comparison on a test show for "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon." And now an enterprising t-shirt salesman has created the site "Bobby Kenneth 2012" that serves as the first official platform for a complete 2012 GOP ticket.

Among other things, the site offers a volcano-monitoring game that doesn't work, because as we all know now, volcano monitoring is stupid. And t-shirts with "30 Rock" slogans like "we want to go there" with a picture of the White House. Check it out.


Judd Gregg, who cut and run from a cabinet position because his "conservative principles" wouldn't allow him to support the president's economic policies, personally took home hundreds of thousands of dollars from earmarks.

President Barack Obama's former nominee to become commerce secretary, REPUBLICAN Sen. Judd Gregg, steered taxpayer money to his home state's redevelopment of a former Air Force base even as he and his brother engaged in real estate deals there, an Associated Press investigation found.

Gregg, R-N.H., personally has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in Cyrus Gregg's office projects at the Pease International Tradeport, a Portsmouth business park built at the defunct Pease Air Force Base, once home to nuclear bombers.
Judd Gregg has collected at least $240,017 to $651,801 from his investments there, Senate records show, while helping arrange at least $66 million in federal aid for the former base.
funny pictures of cats with captions
Rarely do we get such naked admissions out of the supposed "thinkers" of the right, but the Doughy Pantload steps right up to the plate and lets fly about his thoughts on Obama's recovery efforts:
I Don't Want To Pay For It

That is, by far, my driving attitude in all of this. I just don't want to pay for it. It's not that I don't want government to do nice things for deserving people [....] It's that I think most of Obama's ideas will not work, will be a waste of money and will hurt the economy. And, flatly, I don't want to pay for it. [....] I will look for every means within the boundaries of the law to minimize what I pay in taxes and I make no apologies for that whatsoever.

Ideas on how to do that are welcome.

Five year olds who've been told to eat their vegetables have come up with better reasoning than this. And seriously, to end with "Ideas on how to do that are welcome"? Comedy gold! Take a good firm stand and then admit you've no idea how to accomplish it! Perfect right-wing reasoning!

So here's the obligatory "shoe's on the other foot" comparison: as the country ratcheted up its rhetoric and preparations for war in Iraq and over a million people filled the Washington Mall, how many demonstrators thought the final, bottom line for their opposition was "I don't want to pay for it"? I thought so.



It seems like every news story involving global warming involves the phrase "faster than previously expected," and this latest bleak update on the accelerating loss of Antarctic ice is no exception.  Too lazy to read the article?  Here is the bleak bit:

A 2007 IPCC report predicted a sea level rise of 7 to 23 inches (18 to 58 centimeters) by the end of the century, which could flood low-lying areas and force millions to flee. The group said an additional 3.9 to 7.8 inches (10 to 20 centimeters) rise was possible if the recent, surprising melting of polar ice sheets continues.

Summerhayes said the rise could be much higher.

"If the west Antarctica sheet collapses, then we're looking at a sea level rise of between 1 meter and 1.5 meters (3 feet, 4 inches to nearly 5 feet)," Summerhayes said.

A fossil footprint left by a human ancestor about 1.5 million years ago in Kenya
What a fantastic discovery. Footprints found on a sandy plain in eastern Africa have been hailed by scientists as the earliest evidence of modern upright walking. The footprints, dated to between 1.51m and 1.53m years ago, were discovered in sedimentary rock at Ileret, Kenya, researchers report in today's edition of the journal Science.

5 years, 9 months, and 26 days after Commander Codpiece gave his famous "Mission accomplished" speech, President Obama gave one at Camp Lejeune in which he announced that the U.S. "combat mission in Iraq will end" by August 31, 2010 - but 50,000 troops will remain.
James Dobson's Focus on the Family spent $600,000 to defeat marriage equality in California, recently laying off approximately 150 staffers. Now Dobson is stepping down as chairman. Maybe he'll focus on wiping out those internet porn subscriptions that conservative christians are so fond of.

The Louisville Courier-Journal has another bombshell about Sen. Jim Bunning, the embattled Republican who is increasingly going rogue in an effort to hold onto his seat:




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