Monday, May 31, 2010

Headlines - Monday May 31

Happy Memorial Day.
Watch this
Gulf Coast beachgoers unfazed by oil spill.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Headlines - Sunday May 30

The U.S. military is reviewing options for a unilateral strike in Pakistan in the event that a successful attack on American soil is traced to the country's tribal areas, according to senior military officials.

The United States continues to lead the world in defense spending, according to a new report released Thursday by the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation, a U.S.-based non-partisan research organization.

In fact, the U.S. outspends Russia, the next highest spender, by more than 800 percent. 

In 2008, the most recent year for which figures are available, the U.S. expenditure was 696.3 billion dollars, followed by Russia's 86 billion and China's 83.5 billion. 
Gulf crisis command center guarded by Wackenhut
As in the Wackenhut hazing scandal from Afghanistan. What, wasn't Blackwater available? They're blocking media access as you might expect. This whole transparency thing sounds a little different than the transparency I used to know. Ahhh, modern times where the corporate world calls the shots and runs the show.
There are now photos to match the BP tweets.

Soooo… Now what?

After indicating on Thursday that the top-kill effort was working, then pausing the operation, then resuming it and indicating that it is going as planned on Friday, BP now says that the amount of oil spewing from the well hasn't changed, and there is not guarantee that the procedure is actually working.

"I don't think the amount of oil coming out has changed," BP chief operating officer Doug Suttles said on Saturday. "Just by watching it, we don't believe it's changed."

So we're back to trying to put a hat on the damned thing that will allow BP to salvage the well?  There is absolutely no reason for a public that's tired of being treated like mushrooms... kept in the dark and fed a daily ration of bullshit... to believe this will be any more successful than your last three efforts. So, what happens if this latest scheme doesn't work?    

He estimated that the procedure would take about four days to complete, but if it also fails, it could be several months before BP can finish drilling two relief wells to intersect the runaway well so concrete can be poured into it.

Oh, is that all?  What does that mean to the rest of us then?

As much as 73 million more gallons of oil could contaminate the Gulf of Mexico if the flow continues unabated until August _ the soonest that officials estimate the relief wells can be drilled _ poisoning wildlife, destroying fragile marshlands, closing more fishing grounds and depriving fisherman, resort workers and many others of their livelihoods.

In other words, a minimum of two more months of the same crap that's been going on for 6 weeks already right?

So you people really had nothing... not one god damned thing... ready to deal with this situation that you yourselves were creating when you went into the deep water drilling business?  You're just stumbling around in the fricking dark trying one hit or miss scheme after another hoping that something will work?  Hell, I could do that.

And what about all the other wells in the Gulf?  It's my understanding that there are over 3500 of the damned things out there, many of them drilled by companies with exactly the same regard for the rest of the world exhibited by BP.

How many of them are sitting out there like ticking time bombs just waiting to become major catastrophes themselves?  Does our government even know?  Probably not.  They obviously haven't provided any oversight or exercised any form of control over the companies involved.  They really don't seem to know much at all about anything that's been going on in the Gulf, or anywhere else where private corporations are sucking the resources out of our public lands.

I had been advocating just blowing this sucker up... now I would favor stuffing all the oil company execs and the entire MMS into the damned thing to slow the flow. And THEN blowing it up.  If someone hasn't suggested that yet, consider this a proposal.

In years to come, I predict there will be a lot of scholarly books on the groupthink that took place in the run-up to this disaster, much like the Tompkins books on the Challenger disaster.

In other news, bin Laden states he is professionally envious of BP.

Since corporations are considered persons, how about building a prison large enough to put BP in it?
Covering BP's ASS
The FAA has placed two Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs, a/k/a "no-fly zones") over much of the Gulf of Mexico from the surface to 3,000'. The stated purpose is "DUE TO THE NUMEROUS LOW LEVEL OPERATIONS ASSOCIATED WITH THE DEEPWATER HORIZON."
All aircraft operations are prohibited except those flights authorized by ATC, routine flights supporting offshore oil operations; federal, State, local and military flight operations supporting oil spill recovery and reconstitution efforts; and air medical and law enforcement operations.

What the two TFRs do, of course, is keep aircraft hired by reporters and conservation groups from observing what is going on.

It is clear which side of the picture this Administration is on, and that is
the side of BP. That would have been expected from the Cheney-Chimpy Administration and we all would have been appropriately cynical about it, but this is far, far worse.

So what is the alternative to the Democrats when it comes to looking out for the interests of working people? The Teabaggers are clearly not it; they are an astroturf group for the GOP. The Libertarians are even worse than the GOP.

Who stands up for us? Maybe three senators out of 100: Russ Feingold, Bernie Sanders and Al Franken, perhaps? It's becoming clear that this administration does not.

We are so screwed.
Gulf oil spill shifts attitudes: 51% say drilling risks outweigh benefits.
Jeebus. Only 51%?
click to zoom
Israel: the peaceful nation
Does the phrase "suicidally narcissistic" ring a bell? "Israel says it will not take part in a conference aimed at achieving a nuclear-arms free Middle East, proposed at a UN meeting in New York. Nearly 200 nations, signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), backed plans for the meeting in 2012. In a document agreed at the talks, Israel was singled out for criticism. Israel, which has not signed the NPT, dismissed the document as "deeply flawed" and "hypocritical". "It ignores the realities of the Middle East and the real threats facing the region and the entire world," the Israeli government said in a statement quoted by the AFP news agency."  
Frank Rich: Obama's Katrina? Maybe Worse

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Headlines - Saturday May 29


Maybe if someone shows this to Obama, he'll close the place. And the secret second prison in Bagram where we are still torturing:
Most Guantanamo detainees low-level fighters, task force report says.
The Palin Brand
In the midst of one of the most precipitous political crashes in the Mountain West, Sarah Palin made a mad dash into Boise on Friday, urging the election of a man who had plagiarized his campaign speech from Barack Obama, had been rebuked by the military for misusing the Marine uniform and had called the American territory of Puerto Rico a separate country.

And why not? Vaughn Ward, the Republican congressional candidate from Idaho, has the dubious character trifecta of the Palin brand: bone-headed, defiant and willfully ignorant. When told that Puerto Rico was not a country, he said, "I don't care what you call it."

We just had the 1,000 US death in the Afghanistan war, which is also our longest running war, ever.

So sad. Let's not forget that our long weekend is to remember our heroes — whoever they happen to be — and to remember those who have gone before us.


If you're ever lucky enough to be in Afghanistan, Gunnery Sgt. Benjamin Lepping's left butt cheek has a special surprise… the soldier said. "I decided, 'What could be better than getting a tattoo of the hottest cougar in the Republican Party?'"

And all this time I just thought Mooselini was a butt-head.

(Raw Story)


The start of the cougar season

Happy Memorial Day to Sarah Palin and the troops! (same thing)

Hooray, it's… an ugly Blingee! It depicts America's Fence, keepin' those perverts away from America's Piper Palin, except for the ones that can moondance through the large, large gap. Happy Memorial Day weekend to the troops, as well as regular humans! Everyone walkin' around the beach, stone drunk, no pants, no nothin'…


Money well spent? - Dims pass a $60 BILLION war bill.

Deficit reduction 1 - Dims cut $24 BILLION in healthcare extensions for the unemployed.

Deficit reduction 2 - Dims cut $23 BILLION payout to preserve 100,000 teachers's jobs.

And that is our lesson today about priorities, and how to balance the budget GOP-style, which means on the backs of the poor. Besides, why do we need to educate the cannon fodder?


Liveblogging Obama On The Gulf Coast, Talking About… Let's See… Oil Spill?

Barack Obama is down in Louisiana near the abandoned beaches and marshes soaked in oil and murder. He has a little podium set up near some rocks, protecting him from the oil and mud and dead animals and unemployment. Let's see what he has to say, if he ever talks! We hear that he's going to throw some money at gulf coast people. Hooray!

3:00 — OBAMA'S COMING OUT. It looks so hot out there. Oh good god, he has Charlie Crist on one side, David Vitter on the other. Is it possible for Obama to get out of this situation without a brutal gangbang?

More here. 
But Could Saint Ronald Reagan Possibly Be As Corrupt As Barack Obama?
Watergate x1 billion
Legal, normal political dealing with Sestak made sleazy by Bill Clinton's involvement

A sleestak does look pretty damned sexy dressed up like a Navy Officer!

Ha ha, how'd that "White House investigation" go, Barack? Pretty good, we bet: "It has been suggested that the Administration may have offered Congressman Sestak the position of Secretary of the Navy in the hope that he would accept the offer and abandon a Senate candidacy. This is false." Hooray! But what about the other thing, the part everybody's actually jabbering about? "The White House Chief of Staff enlisted the support of former President Clinton who agreed to raise with Congressman Sestak options of service on a Presidential or other Senior Executive Branch Advisory Board. Congressman Sestak declined the suggested alternatives, remaining committed to his Senate candidacy." Who is reporting this made-up sleaze? Oh, the White House counsel? Okay. MORE »


Who the hell wishes he was Steve Doocy?!

Ha ha, I mean, oh gross! The damn socialist teleprompter strikes again! Or did it...

Fox News anchor Clayton Morris called himself the wrong name Friday -- twice!

Morris was reading the intro to the Fox & Friends web feature, Fox Flash, when he jokingly introduced himself as "Fox & Friends" co-host Steve Doocy.

"Hey there everyone, I'm Steve Doocy, this is your Fox Flash," Morris said.

At the end of the segment, he did it again.

"That's your morning Fox Flash, I'm Steve Doocy," he said.

A Fox News insider says, "It was wishful thinking on Morris' part, and executives didn't find it amusing."

OK, Maybe Gretchen Carlson does. But that's besides the point.



The Grand Old Panderers

Last night, Republican warnings of voting as a block turned out to be bluster. They'd promised a "vigorous defense" of the policy of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, but five Republicans wound up voting for repeal. Rising GOP star Paul Ryan actually sat out the vote, perhaps a signal that Republican house leadership had given up on the idea. And shame on the 26 Democrats who voted against it. Still, the repeal -- conditional though it is -- passed the house 229-168. Sanity prevailed.
Christian Prisons

The struggle toward the creation of a theocratic state continues…

Corrections Concepts Inc.'s effort to establish America's first all-Christian prison in Oklahoma has hit some roadblocks, but it is still continuing to move down the pike.

And while the proposal might still be a pipedream for Bill Robinson, the founder of Corrections Concepts Inc., it appears to be inching ever closer to reality.

Robinson recently told the Tulsa (Oklahoma) World that a bonding company had expressed interest in his project — a private prison administered by Christian officials, attended to by Christian guards, adhering to Christian programming and stocked with Christian prisoners — and that full funding for it depended upon states agreeing to send 285 prisoners to the facility.

Wonderful, except that…

"Tax payers should never be forced to support religious indoctrination," said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. "This scheme is fraught with constitutional problems, and no state should subsidize it."

In the letters to corrections officials, Americans United attorneys — Legal Director Ayesha N. Khan and Staff Attorney Ian Smith — noted that in 2007, a federal appeals court struck down public funding of an evangelical Christian program at an Iowa prison. The Christian prison in Oklahoma, they say, would likely meet the same fate.

"If the Department were to provide funding to Corrections Concepts' prison, indoctrination would be the inevitable result…," Americans United asserted. "And, just as inevitably, the funding of such indoctrination would violate the Constitution."

How about also introducing Muslim prisons, Jewish prisons and prisons for atheists?  And if you're going that route, then why not have prisons for blacks and others for whites?  A Hispanic one would be nice too for all them illegals running around.  Once that is done then prisons could be segregated based on sexual orientation.  A prison for white, gay, Christians sounds appealing.  And here's a novel idea: why not set up prisons based on political affiliation?  I'm sure conservative child rapists would be relieved to know they would never have to shower in the company of filthy libruls.

Sigh.  Another screwed up idea courtesy of the clowns at the Christian Taliban…


Friday, May 28, 2010

Headlines - Friday May 28

Did you plug the hole yet, Daddy?
Here's the Emotional Clip from today's Obamar press conference, where he tries to prove that he is "sufficiently enraged" over this whole oil spill with an anecdote, about how his freaking daughter wakes him up every morning by asking the annoying question, "Did you plug the hole yet, daddy?" Send that gal to military school, is what we came away with. What about Matt Drudge?
One might also imagine her asking, did you stop the wars and drone attacks and torture, Daddy?
Dozens of Italian women who have had relationships with Roman Catholic priests or lay monks have endorsed an open letter to the pope that calls for the abolition of the celibacy rule. The letter, thought by one signatory to be unprecedented, argues that a priest "needs to live with his fellow human beings, experience feelings, love and be loved"
Republicans Demand a Government Takeover and Bailout of the Oil Spill
Bob Cesca

Now that crude has begun to wash upon the shores and wetlands of Republican red states, any superficial bumper sticker griping about socialism has been temporarily forgotten.

That's the bitch about building a party platform around specious, shallow platitudes. They might be effective in terms of rallying the easily-led, low information base, but as soon as practicality steps in, all sloganeering is dropped in lieu of confronting and dealing with reality. Subsequently, these alleged free market state's rights small government anti-regulation southern conservative cardboard standee Republicans continue to demand federal help and socialized taxpayer money. The Republicans are demanding redistributed wealth from Pennsylvania and Vermont and Illinois and New York and Massachusetts with all of its socialist bleeding heart tree-hugging environmental wacko liberals.

However hypocritical the Republicans might be on this, they're ultimately correct. The federal government has a responsibility to protect our economy, our natural resources and our lives from the destruction that's often wrought by irresponsible corporations. Thanks, Republicans, for finally catching up.

The Repugs haven't caught up with jack shit. As soon as this oil mess is off the news cycle they will conveniently forget their moment of sensibility and it'll be back to business as usual.

But for as long as it lasts I am enjoying the irony of them being forced to pop their heads up out of their own ideological muck and mire and draw a nice clean breath of reality.

Infamous singing Senator from Utah, Orrin Hatch, is fed up with people pretending to be heroes (He's looking at you, Richard Blumenthal), and so he is attempting to make a change to the 2005 Stolen Honor Act, which criminalized false claims of military service. Hatch says:

My amendment would add to this existing statute, making false statements regarding participation in combat operations. It appears to me that individuals make these false claims in order to obtain honorariums, employment, elected office or other positions of authority.

If convicted of this misdemeanor offense, the perpetrator could face 6 months in jail and/or a fine. This is the same penalty for falsely obtaining and wearing awards or medals.

To which I can only reply:


Wikipedia entry on Chimpy McStagger


Perspective ...
While not minimizing the BP disaster, nor my sadness at the damage to the environment and the locals' way of life, they sure as hell didn't bitch about the money companies like BP brought in:
... I've been schooled recently that the people of Louisiana love their corrupt politicians and expect them to keep Big Oil happy.

These are the folks who don't want "big government" meddling in their affairs, who don't want the gravy train derailed because of "government regulation", yet they're on every TV show now, bitching about how the government hasn't done enough to help them.

Sorry, but you can't have it both ways.

You can't welcome these corporations with open arms, hearing their promises of employment and money, dancing for joy as the leases were sold, and then cry when they
give you the shaft...

Times Picayune outdoors Editor Bob Marshall put the blame on the backs of Louisiana's elected officials, saying they became boosters for development, not protectors of the public trust. "The shock being expressed by these folks – and many of their constituents – at the terrible environmental gamble that comes with offshore drilling goes beyond preaching caution after the horse is out of the barn. After all, these same groups helped open the barn door, hung a feed bucket around the horse's neck, and then gave it a good slap on the rump to speed it on its way."

Yes, there is plenty of blame to go around. But maybe it goes beyond just the feds, the Louisiana congressional delegation, and other public officials. The state as a whole just might want to take a look in the mirror. Louisiana was seduced by an outside industry full of vast economic promises. The money came in easily and there can be no dispute that many new jobs were created. But when you put the financial tally to paper, has it been worth it? [my ems]


When you deal with the Devil, eventually you have to pay the price (1 ea. Human Soul) and the people of the Gulf Coast are now paying with their souls, on many levels.

By god, we should do all we can to plug the leak and clean up the mess (and put some big shots from BP in jail), but when this is over, the people of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and the others might just want shut the fuck up and let the "big government" do what it has to in order to make certain this never happens again.

I'm sick and tired of all these folks basically saying they don't want to be part of the United States until the shit hits the fan. They don't like the East and West Coast "Liberal Elite" until they're up to their necks in shit, or water, or oil, and then they're the first ones in line with their hands out. They don't want to pay taxes, but they sure as hell want the government to have the wherewithal to dig their ass out of whatever hole they're in.

Yes, I feel horrible for the fishermen, the hoteliers, and all the other folks who've had their lives turned upside down, but it's time they realize that nothing is for free. You might not have to pay for it right away, but the bill will eventually come due. The Gulf states are paying for the easy money and jobs they got when the oil leases were sold. If they don't want this to happen again, they'd better take a hard look at what they're getting before they sign on the dotted line.
Attention, Gulf Coast teabaggers! (especially you, Govs. Jindal and Barbour)
How are those lines of "we don't want anything from the Federal government" and "drill, baby, drill" and "regulations stifle businesses" and "zOMG, socialism" working out for you, now?

Florida panhandle beaches not on top ten list this year.

Gulf Coast hotels are slashing rates to try and hold onto their bookings. Where the oil is coming ashore, the tourists have disappeared.

BP, whether by accident or design, is poisoning the fisherman that have joined the cleanup efforts.

Seafood prices are going up and may go much higher.

Summer home rentals on the Florida gulf coast are down by 80% and nearly a quarter of the Gulf of Mexico is now off-limits to fishermen.

A strong hurricane in the Gulf could blow the oil ashore and well inland.

Yeah, the party of Hoover's mantras "business doesn't need regulation" and "Federal oversight of business stifles innovation" have worked out really well.
Scientists: Newly discovered Gulf oil plume is 22-miles long, six-miles wide.
Finally: Environmental activists campaigning for a halt on Arctic oil exploration welcomed President Barack Obama's decision to halt planned drilling in two regions off the coast of Alaska. Also included in the suspension were drilling projects near Virginia, along with 33 others in the Gulf of Mexico.
He was voted down 18-80: Yesterday, the Senate debated Sen. Russ Feingold's (D-WI) amendment to the war supplemental bill, which called on President Obama to provide a flexible timetable for withdrawal from Afghanistan to Congress. Arguing for the amendment on the floor, Feingold complained that he is "disppointed that" Congress is passing a bill "providing tens of billions of dollars to keep this war going with so little public debate about whether this approach makes any sense." After Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) objected to the Feingold amendment, arguing that it sends the wrong message to the region, Feingold retorted, "The Senator suggests that somehow this sends the wrong message to the region. The real wrong message is that we intend to be there forever."
The business of America is oil
Obama fires lady who ran America's oil industry meth 'n bribery office

What's at the bottom of the Oil Hole, Mommy?

Elizabeth "Liz" Birnbaum, who has run the terrible U.S. Minerals Management Service since last summer, has been fired by mean anti-oil extremist Barack Obama. The federal office is best known for its meth-addict staff in Louisiana and its five-star customer service for the oil industry, which includes filling out all the complicated forms the energy companies need to complete so they can take all the oil from the Earth and then sell it to Americans.


Angry weather caller:


Wisco: BP, Fried Brains, and the three little pigs. 









Echoing what his boss Tony Perkins said in January, today Family Research Council spokestwat Peter Sprigg held a press conference to announce that if DADT were to be repealed, gay soldiers will go on a raping spree.

According to Sprigg, straight soldiers will be too afraid of being accused of "asking for it" to report sexual assaults. He claims that gays in the military already commit three times the number of sexual assaults as heterosexuals, a figure he arrives at by dividing the percentage of same-sex assaults recorded by the military by his (invented) percentage of gay men in the general population, 2.8%. The truth, of course, is that gay men probably constitute far more than 2.8% of the general population and an even higher percentage of the military.

RELATED: Sprigg made no mention of his organization's co-founder, Dr. George Rekers.


You've got to read the hilarious (fake) Twitter feed from BPGlobalPR. It's gold, Jerry! Gold!


According to this, emailing to bitch at your representative is a felony.


This is what the oil spill looks like from space taken by NASA's satellites, Terra and Aqua.


President Obama is speaking at the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery on Memorial Day. Just for clarification, the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery is a veteran's cemetery. It is a price of freedom, and occasionally less noble reasons, that our nation requires many more plots than the ones located at Arlington. If you watch Fox News or read the repugnant Erick Erickson at RedState, you would think Obama was spitting on veterans as they returned from the wars.

"Obama may talk about the government in the first person, but the men and women lying at Arlington know differently. Of course, Obama really doesn't like the military, does he."

Fox News screams;

"Trampling on Tradition?"

What tradition, specifically, the President is trampling on is either not mentioned or directly lied about. Ronald Reagan spoke at West Point on one Memorial Day, and went on one of his famous Santa Barbara ranch vacations on another. George H.W. Bush skipped the ceremony (with Dan Quayle attending in his stead), and George W. Bush missed Arlington in 2001 and 2002.

The President is doing as all Presidents should; he is honoring the sacrifice of veterans on Memorial Day by his attendance and observations at a veteran's cemetery. He has sent his Vice President to lay the traditional wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns, as Presidents Reagan, H.W. Bush, and W. Bush have done. Please note that Bill Clinton is the only one of our presidents in the last 30 years to attend every wreath-laying at Arlington.

This is another repulsive example of conservative attacks that are based on lies…period! Not distortions, or misrepresentations, or contextual distinctions; these are lies!

"Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor." Unless you disagree with his or her politics.


Morford: Thank God you don't live in Oklahoma.


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Headlines - Thursday May 27

click to zoom
Because we have an abundance of money and are not fighting enough wars, it looks like we're getting ready to attack Iran.
Fun fact: Iran is in compliance with ALL U.N. laws, treaties, and in particular has NEVER failed an IAEA inspection. 
Rage Against the Machine Gun

Contractors shipped useless gun parts to the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan ... and still got paid.


Why Sarah Palin talks like a child.


DADT disrespects all soldiers - as does the GOP

One of the things that always strikes me when talking about Republicans is their tremendous disrespect for Americans' intelligence. The lies are transparent -- at times, idiotic. The spin never quite fits the situation very well. The solutions, such as they are, are always either a call to do something that's already failed or merely a gimmick to get reelected. But what really gets me is when their arguments hinge on that belief in your stupidity; i.e., the Democrats' idea will never work because you're too dumb to understand it/too lazy to do it/too committed to being a jerk. Not only does the GOP believe you're stupid, they really don't think you're a very good person. That is, assuming their arguments are presented honestly. Keep reading:
Riding the Holy of Holies to Victory

Tim D'Annunzio
Candidate for Congress

Mr. D'Annunzio,

I'm glad to see you're trouncing your opponent in the Republican primary. Now it's time to finish him off for good. Capitalize on your greatest strength. Force him to campaign against your Christian beliefs.

As far as I know, he's been silent about
your claim that you found Ark of the Covenant in Arizona. Make him address it by doing an ad about it. Even better, employ the Ark as the centerpiece of your immigration strategy. Say you're going to use it like God used it against the Philistines and send all the immigrants packing with a severe case of hemorrhoids in their secret parts.

Do something with your pyramid smashing Greenland prediction too. I know that's a bit harder to do. No Mexican Muslims there, but I think they have Eskimos. They're brown. They're probably Muslim. Do an ad about how you're addressing the Eskimo Muslim terrorism threat by asking God to crush Greenland with a 1000 mile tall pyramid. I bet Sarah Palin would help you out with that.

I know it's a gamble. God might not smite Greenland before the primary, But when he does, you'll be able to write your own ticket. How does "President D'Annunzio" sound to you?

Heterosexually yours,

Gen. JC Christian, patriot


And the American Family Association's (AFA) homophobic Director of Issue Analysis for Government and Public Policy, Bryan Fischer, claims that not only was Adolf Hitler gay, but all of his "Brownshirts" were too: 
A proposed 13-story mosque and Muslim visitors center to be built near the former World Trade Center site has many in the city taking sides. Last night a Manhattan community board endorsed the project over the loud protestations of 9/11 survivors and others.
Some worry that the building will become the focus of future anti-Islam demonstrations and protests, something not appropriate for the planned 9/11 memorial nearby. Other say the mosque will "bridge and heal a divide" between religious factions in New York City.

BP bets on Top Kill. This piece describes the procedure and the potential problems. This dKos analysis speculates that some of the pressure testing has already been done.

Meanwhile, Congress has found out that all was not well at the well before the explosion. Nice that the NY Times is finally reporting on the timeline to the explosion even though 60 Minutes reported this over a week ago.


Oil disaster hearings: BP was under economic pressure to finish job

Chris Granger / The Times-PicayuneMembers of the Deepwater Horizon Joint Investigation team, from left, are: Lt. Robert Butts, USCG; Ross Wheatley, USCG; Capt. Hung Nguyen, USCG; David Dykes, MMS; Jason Mathews, MMS; and John McCarroll, MMS.

It's always about money, whether it's health care reform, our children's education, the incentive for the GOP to avoid smiling at President Obama, and now the lives of 11 crew members, and the prevention of Big Oil disasters:

A member of the federal panel investigating why the Deepwater Horizon exploded April 20 presented evidence Wednesday that BP had wanted to use the rig to drill another well by early March and would have overspent by about $22 million by the time of the accident.

Jason Mathews of the Minerals Management Service said BP applied to use the Deepwater Horizon rig to drill in another oil field on March 8, 43 days before the rig workers, in a rush to finish months of work in the oil field known as Mississippi Canyon 252, removed heavy drilling mud that could have held down explosive natural gas.

Based on earlier testimony that a typical well costs a lease-holder like BP $500,000 a day, Mathews asserted that the company had already overspent by $21 million to $22 million. [...]

It's the first time anyone has tried to quantify the economic pressures that may have led BP to do things like remove the drilling mud before placing a final cement plug or send a subcontractor's team home without performing the most definitive test of the well-cementing job.

Eleven lives were lost. Eleven families are mourning. An exponential number of friends, extended families are, too. But that doesn't matter, so long as BP can recapture some of that oil gush while avoiding an accurate gallon count.

Poor BP and Co. are probably in a tizzy now, what with not having factored in criminal lawyer fees.


Social Consevative Hate.

They actually make it up as they go.  Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association:

So Hitler himself was an active homosexual. And some people wonder, didn't the Germans, didn't the Nazis, persecute homosexuals? And it is true they did; they persecuted effeminate homosexuals. But Hitler recruited around him homosexuals to make up his Stormtroopers, they were his enforcers, they were his thugs. And Hitler discovered that he could not get straight soldiers to be savage and brutal and vicious enough to carry out his orders, but that homosexual solders basically had no limits and the savagery and brutality they were willing to inflict on whomever Hitler sent them after. So he surrounded himself, virtually all of the Stormtroopers, the Browshirts, were male homosexuals.

These people have no shame and their hatred knows no bounds.  There is no need to rebuke trash of this sort except to point out that homosexuals were sent to concentration camps along with Jews and gypsies.

Allow me to state again that the biggest threat facing the United States is not radical Islamic terrorism.  It's the hateful, lying, ignorant scum from within who quote scripture and carry a copy of the Constitution in their pockets – both of which they know not a fucking thing.


The Gulf Disaster - Where is Captain Kirk?

The pressure is mounting on the Obama administration to get this thing fixed.

Five weeks after the beginning of an oil spill in the Gulf Coast, President Obama is poised to announce strengthened, new inspections of offshore drilling on Thursday — a heightened response that his critics say comes too late and with too little force.

Although Obama has responded to the disaster from the start, he has chosen his words carefully in criticizing BP, the oil firm in charge of the site. On Tuesday night, he said at a fundraiser in California that the government needs to "revisit how these oil companies are operating."

Obama will hold a news conference — a rarity so far in his administration — at the White House on Thursday morning to discuss the spill, officials said.

This is a tough one for the President.  His opponents have been relentless in trying to lay the blame his way.  Actually, the criticism is coming from all quarters.  James Carville

"The President of the United States could've come down here, he could've been involved with the families of these 11 people" who died on the rig after an explosion, Carville said on ABC's Good Morning America. "He could be commandeering tankers and making BP bring tankers in and clean this up. They could be deploying people to the coast right now. He could be with the Corps of Engineers and the Coast Guard…doing something about these regulations. These people are crying, they're begging for something down here, and it just looks like he's not involved in this."

"Man, you got to get down here and take control of this! Put somebody in charge of this thing and get this moving! We're about to die down here!"

There is a crisis at hand and it is unsure what more the President can do.  The best scientific minds in the country are trying to devise a means to plug the leak.  That said, perception is everything in politics.  Obama needs to gear up the emotion machine and look more concerned than he has. This is one time when his Mr. Spock-like cool and reasoned approach is not allaying the anger and emotion being felt out there.

Look tough.  Be tough.  And send a clear message that BP and whoever else is responsible for this disaster will get what they deserve.  As someone noted, there are times when Mr. Spock is not enough.  What people need now is to know that their anger is not only justified but that that White House feels exactly the same way…and that requires Obama to display the raw emotion of Captain Kirk.

President Obama playing basketball with Russian kids during Deepwater Horizon disaster.


Bush playing the guitar during Katrina.

Here's a list of things that could be done by the White House regarding this horror.


To be fair to BofA and Citi, it's a mistake that could have happened to anyone who had massive teams of lawyers and accountants. Gosh, some people are such nitpickers. Funny how those two banks were among the hardest hit during the crisis but that was surely a simple coincidence. It could have happened to anyone and was surely an accident since intentional hiding of debt would be a violation of SEC rules. CNBC:

Bank of America and Citigroup incorrectly accounted for billions of dollars in debt over the past three years, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal


Alternet: How Do You Feel About Obama Siding with the Vatican Instead of About a Hundred Thousand U.S. Victims of Pedophile Priests?

I'm slammed on my day job, so invite others to write how it makes you feel to have the President of the United States side with The Vatican instead of hundreds of thousands of crime victims of the pedophile epidemic in the Catholic Church. It was the U.S. Solicitor General, joined by the U.S. State Department and the U.S. Justice Department who filed briefs in favor of The Vatican Friday May 21st, in the lawsuit from Oregon that Jeff Anderson and other plaintiff attorneys are trying to take all the way to the Pope.

Do you agree that the .17 square miles of real estate that is the Vatican is a sovereign nation? That a mall sized pile of cement populated by leaders of a religion, who go out from that nation all over the globe propagating their message, is a sovereign nation?

Like Italy and Germany?

Am I getting this right?

The Office of the U.S. Solicitor General who wrote the amicus brief is headed by Obama's Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan. Hearings confirming Kagan onto the Court are scheduled for June in D.C.


Is there a Sarah Palin vileness/absurdity threshold?


BP: Bringing people together.


The Many Faces of Bubba Jindal – Small Government advocate and noted volcano expert, boy exorcist and LA governor, Bubba Jindal wants Big Government to do something about BP polluting his shoreline. Other GOPers think he is hurting the oil industry.


Eel checks out oil gusher.


Running government like a business.


Stimulus-critic Rick Perry only able to balance his state's budget because of stimulus.

"I am a hypocrite!"

And speaking of the President of Texas, he's writing a new book! It's called Fed Up, and it teaches you how to hate the federal government like a Texan does (i.e., while wearing spurs). A rep from Perry's publisher says that "when [Perry] speaks, millions listen," so this book could inspire a new civil rights movement or even cause a world war between Texas and "the Beltway," depending on how "fed up" people end up getting.

More here:


This is the kind of psycho fucker who would never have made it to induction before Bush broke our military The Army is investigating a Ft. Wainwright soldier (Track Palin, was our first thought, too, but it wasn't him) for posting a video to his Facebook page where he taunts Iraqi children as "future gay terrorists." The children - who are so young they have never known peace - smile and nod and give the soldier a "thumbs-up" sign. Until the older of the two realizes they are being mocked and tells the younger child to put his hand down.

And speaking of psycho fuckers: Conklin Dairy Farms video shows dairy cows being violently abused. 


Gas: It's America's crack!


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Headlines - Wednesday May 26

Nope. The teabaggers STILL aren't gonna like you, Mr. President. You keep trying, though. Maybe next time...

TUCSON, Ariz. - The Obama administration plans to announce Tuesday that it will send as many as 1,200 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border to improve border security, an Arizona congresswoman said.

Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords also said in a statement released Tuesday that President Barack Obama will request $500 million in funding for border security.



This is adorable.


America's collapse briefly stalled by sexytime Obama pic

But where are the WHITE HOUSE CRASHERS???
Terrible oil spills destroying however many states/Gulfs of Mexico? Stock market collapse, again? Who cares, just look at these sexy grownup people dressed all fancy and not having sex affairs with bloggers or whatever.

This photo was taken just before White House Taco Night, which is always on Wednesdays. Wednesday is Taco Night — not like Tuesday is Taco Night, which is the case for Real America. (Actually Real Real America has Taco Night every night, after whatever other fifty pounds of shit they ate while watching the TeeVee for seven hours, because Taco Bell is Open Late(TM) at night.) White House Flickr


On 9/11 Jerry Falwell declared that god was punishing us for abortionists, gays, and feminists. 
Muslim clerics have declared that recent earthquakes is God punishing us for women dressing immodestly.
Pat Robertson said that the Haiti earthquake was God punishing the Haitians for making a "pact with the Devil". 

So I just can't wait to hear what God is punishing us for now!

As an Atheist I feel like I should be able to have an opinion as to what God is punishing us for that is based on our cultural perspective and belief system.

So, speaking in behalf of the Atheist community, the oil spill in the Gulf is because God is punishing us for not having a working shutoff valve at the oil well head. 


"I tend to think she wishes she'd never heard my name. I have become her legacy. Mary Beth Loose Cannon is now looking for a job. She blew her last job busting me.  Karma is so sweet! She's looking for a work while Cheech and I start our second multi-million dollar tour thanks to the publicity she created for us! Thank you Mary Beth - may you find peace and happiness in your search for your soul."  Tommy Chong, gloating that Mary Beth Buchanan, the anti-science, religiously-insane slut who put him in prison for nine months for selling harmless plastic pipes, lost her primary by getting only 33% of the vote Link



Oil soaked birds of a feather.


I guess god wrote the Magna Carta too?



Wisco: The ultimate failure of wedge issue politics.


Louisiana beach

More grim photos are here.



Dan Froomkin
reported this yesterday:

Members of Congress with any inclination to balk at President Obama's massive emergency war-funding request have found their case strengthened by two recent reports that question many of the administration's key premises and assumptions.

The reports from the
Congressional Research Service and Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction raise concerns ranging from the existential to the procedural.

Just for starters, there's the lack of an exit strategy, signs of a slipping timeframe for troop drawdowns and the mixed results thus far of the troop "surge." ...

In his December announcement, Obama declared that the troop surge would enable the U.S. to "seize the initiative, while building the Afghan capacity that can allow for a responsible transition of our forces out of Afghanistan." He said troops would then start coming home in July 2011.

But ... the Congressional Research Service report raises serious doubts about Obama's promised timeframe....

There isn't going to be a drawdown anytime soon. I never believed there would be -- when the president announced his plan and the most reasonable-sounding analysts expressed severe doubts about accomplishing all of his goals in the timeframe, I assumed Obama knew he'd be able to take an incomplete if the efforts fell short and no one would try to stop him -- letting at least one of our wars drag on endlessly is the only thing he's doing as president that isn't being attacked by the right. And that's exactly where we seem to be headed.

Lefties could put millions of bodies in the streets demanding an end to this war and it would accomplish no more than it did in the Bush years with regard to Iraq. Our GOP/Fox News overlords would finally have a visible hippie enemy to punch. If Obama had any thought of withdrawal, the right's theatrical howls of outrage would drag him to the right. Nothing would change.

You know what it would take to finally end this war? America has to elect a Republican president -- and we have to engage in no anti-war protests whatsoever. Just play possum -- then it will be fine to pull out (our president is a Republican, after all, so pulling out won't be considered treason), and there won't seem to be anything to be gained by staying in (no hippies in the streets to punch, so no potential for domestic political gain). It's a bleak prospect, but it may be the only hope we have. (Or, of course, our entire economy could collapse, which might force the issue.)


Your oil dispersant is on its way

And it looks like this.

June marks the beginning of Hurricane Season down South.

What are the odds that a big hurricane comes along shortly and with winds over a hundred and forty miles an hour, picks up a bunch of that black gold, oil ya see, and takes and dumps a metric buttload of an emulsion of oil, water, foam, stuff that will lubricate those squeaky hinges, all over the damn place, From Louisiana to New York.

Once that shit gets picked up by hurricane force winds and is sucked up into the upper atmosphere, we are going to have the biggest can of WD-40 on our hands the world has ever seen.
Water Displacement, Formula Number 40.

90 weight oil, formula one, all over the place.
It's coming, mark my words, it will be raining oil.
Big surprise. The President left the room and the GOPers started trashing him:
President Obama went to Capitol Hill on Tuesday for a rare meeting with Senate Republicans, but the 75-minute session yielded little progress on hot-button topics and left some senators with bruised feelings.

"He needs to take a Valium before he comes in and talks to Republicans," Sen. Pat Roberts (Kan.) told reporters. "He's pretty thin-skinned."

Sen. Sam Brownback (Kan.) described the meeting as "testy," and Sen. John Thune (S.D.) called it a "lively discussion." Others questioned whether the "symbolism" of Obama's approach matched the actions of his Democratic congressional allies.
I'm sure this was another victory for bipartisanship and the Republicans will do whatever they can to make their relationship work.
GOP rallies to protect BP from liability again.
BP CEO walks on oil covered beach, barks orders to media. Video here
Well isn't this fun. The moron tea-sipping CEO of Britishe Petroleumeshire, Tony Hayward, decided to take a Very Serious stroll along the terrifying, ruined oily death-beaches of the Gulf Coast, and then yelled "GET EM OUTTA THERE" at independent media reporters filming the awful, profit-destroying scene. Apparently he only "invited" the cameras for a press conference later, hundreds of yards away, with no oil in sight. Well, sorry to tell you mister fancy Lobsterback queen-fucker, but here in 'Merka we just show up whenever and go nuts.
Foreign agents
Are cardinals, bishops and priests agents of a foreign power? I ask this because the Obama Administration has filed a brief with the Supreme Court arguing that the Vatican is immune from being sued for its child-molesting priests because it is a foreign state.

Then are not at least the cardinals and bishops foreign agents? My understanding is that they are promoted to being bishops and cardinals and assigned to their jobs by the Vatican. The Vatican exercises some degree of oversight, though probably not a terrible amount, as I would suspect that their rules evolved during the days when it took weeks and months to travel from Rome to a far-off place like Scotland. The cardinals also vote in the papal elections.

It would seem to me that the church should not have it both ways; that they are both a foreign power and their hierarchy here are not foreign agents.

But evidently, they've been having it both ways for decades.
This, critics say, is what BP does not want you to see: oil and chemical dispersants swirling together into a toxic soup, forming large plumes under the surface of the water as deep as twenty-five feet, perhaps deeper.

The small droplets of dispersed oil are "capable of passing right into the flesh of fish and birds." "It's absolutely disgusting," Cousteau described. "I think this has got to be one of the most horrible things I've ever seen underwater." Watch it:


Lazy Snowbilly Grifter

Palin bombs at trade show; could her speech scam be finished? 

Hope you liked the free food, slob.

Sleazy grifter Sarah Palin has been raking in the money at various conventions and trade shows, because she became famous in late 2008 when a shameless old man thought she might help his doomed presidential campaign. But Palin's relatively small fan base — maybe 2 million dumb people in a nation of 309 million? — may have spent all the money they have to spend on her idiot shenanigans and shameless embrace of the liberal celebrity lifestyle. Plus, she keeps giving the same stupid "campaign speech" at these events — hardly bothering to even mention the industry that paid her six figures to show up and spew her ignorant nonsense. MORE »


Deepwater Horizon kept oil rig survivors detained until they signed legal documents

Jesus christ.

The workers who survived the awful explosion of the Deepwater Horizon/BP oil rig weren't simply taken back to shore after their harrowing escape and rescue — instead, according to lawyers for the survivors and interviews with The Guardian, they were detained for up to 40 hours at sea, unable to even call their families until they had signed legal documents absolving Deepwater Horizon.

Lawyers say the isolation was deliberate and that Transocean was trying to wear the men down so they would sign statements denying that they had been hurt or that they had witnessed the explosion that destroyed the rig.

The White House just announced that Barack Obama is going to the Gulf on Friday to, who knows, yell at BP. [Guardian/Yahoo News via Cryptogon]


Complacency, greed and rapaciousness are a fatal combination.


h/t Dick:

Oil inspectors took company gifts, watchdog group finds.

So... U.S. flag rank officers, on their own authority, are apparently able to send fully-armed combat troops to invade sovereign nations.  Do you suppose this authority extends to all the nations of the world?  Or are the number of troops they can decide to send a squad, or a division, or maybe a corps?  Would they possibly be restricted in the weapons they are permitted to use...pistols, mortars, howitzers, main battle tanks, 2000 lb.laser-guided bombs dropped from B-2s?

This is a truly fascinating concept. Thanks, Barry.

Sounds like after 60 years of thoughtful, forward-looking diplomacy and countless
billions in aid, we've finally won their hearts and minds. 
Oh, wait.  

                                 Pakistan has teabaggers, too.