Italian historian Professor Sergio Luzzatto has discovered documents including a letter from a pharmacist who arranged carbolic acid for Pio. Professor Luzzatto suggests in Padre Pio: Miracle and Politics in a Secular Age that it was the corrosive acid that caused the bleeding on the saint's hands. He also said many had expressed doubts and suggested the Vatican only canonised Pio – real name Francesco Forgione – because of public pressure. "Human beings – and particularly the most fragile among them – will still need to look at figures such as Padre Pio to get, if not miracles, then at least consolation and hope," Professor Luzzatto said, according the the Sun.The Catholic Anti-Defamation League dismissed the new claims by reminding everybody that "papal infallibility" makes it impossible to wrongly name someone to be a saint. So there!
According to the Congressional Budget Office, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has been more beneficial for the economy than previous estimates indicated, and the lingering effects of it can still be seen more than one year after it ended.
The economy would have been in much worse shape without the 2009 stimulus—-which increased employment in the third quarter of this year by as many as 3.3 million full-time jobs, according to a report by the Congressional Budget Office. [...]
The CBO figures released Tuesday estimate that the stimulus package raised the gross domestic product this past quarter by 0.3 percent to 1.9 percent.
The CBO report provided a broad range of the estimated number of full-time jobs created because of the stimulus – from a low of 500,000 to a high of 3.3 million jobs. [...]
The effects of the stimulus are fading after having peaked in the first half of 2010, the report noted.
However, the CBO estimates that the stimulus will raise GDP by 0.1 percent to 0.8 percent next year and employment by 200,000 to 1.1 million jobs.
As we now know, the economy was in far worse shape when President Obama took office than anyone had anticipated. And because of our collective underestimate, the stimulus package passed in 2009 was smaller than it should have been.
With that said however, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (stimulus), is still stimulating the economy more than one year after its expiration in early 2010.
The stimulus was not a failure.
The Pat Robertson teevee show has been desegregated, apparently by force, and now allows a Negress interviewer to interview "her kind" (Condoleezza Rice). What are the mysterious black people up to, this Thanksgiving? The hip-hop? Smokin' crack? Crunking? Voodoo? Hankering for the Original Constitution days when they were slaves? No, worse. They are eating bizarre food dishes and claiming it's part of American Thanksgiving. Pat Robertson is aghast. READ MORE »
'Tis the season to donate to charitable organizations that don't promote bigotry against our LGBT friends.
Lots more pepper spray reviews on Amazon.
"Despite Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly's assurance that this harmless vegetable mist is a "food product", I found it wholly unsuitable for eating. It caused an extraordinarily painful burning sensation in the mucous membranes of my upper respiratory tract and the tissue surrounding my eyes, resulting temporary blindness which lasted from 15-30 minutes, inflammation of the skin which lasted from 45 to 60 minutes, and upper body spasms which forced me to bend forward in fits of uncontrollable coughing that made it difficult to breathe or speak for between 3 and 15 minutes. While there are many pleasurable ways to ingest fruits of the genus Capsicum, a nice New Mexico-style green Chile sauce on a stuffed sopaipilla for example, I found this product unsatisfactory."
The obstacle is not technology nor money; it's politics. Specifically, repugs who prefer the earth turn to charcoal tomorrow rather than cut carbon emissions by a microgram. "The gap between where greenhouse gas emissions are headed and where they need to be for climate targets can be bridged cheaply, says a UN report. It says that if sectors such as energy, farming, forestry and transport all cut emissions by feasible amounts, global warming can be kept below 2C. But countries' current pledges are not enough to meet the 2C target. The report, Bridging the Emissions Gap, comes shortly before this year's UN climate summit opens in South Africa. The United Nations Environment Programme (Unep) combined analyses from 28 research centres around the world, looking both at projections of future emissions growth and at what can be achieved in different sectors. Nothing revolutionary is needed, they conclude, if every sector makes its appropriate cuts. And the cost would be small. "At the beginning, the reductions are cost-neutral - or you can gain because they include things like energy efficiency that save fuel costs," said Joseph Alcamo, Unep's chief scientist. "We didn't find that any technological breakthroughs were needed to close the gap." '
Give thanks to those who have earned it
I am sick and fucking tired of people publicly "thanking" a non-existent invisible sky wizard for positive events brought about by the hard work and intelligence of actual, living, adult human beings.
This Thanksgiving, let's try to direct our thanks to those who are actually responsible.
Thankful for the food in front of you? Thank the farmers who grew and raised it, the taxpayers who subsidize those farmers, the illegal immigrants who slave - literally - to harvest it, the truck drivers who transport it, the grocers who sell it, and the people at the table who bought it, prepared it, cooked it and served it.
Thankful for your health and that of your family and friends? Thank the doctors, nurses and technicians who keep you healthy. Thank modern medical science, which is brought to us by poorly-paid researchers at public universities supported by tax dollars paid primarily by the 99 percent, and hardly at all by millionaires and billionaires.
Thankful for your job? Thank the taxpayers who fund the economic stimulus of government spending that supports our economy and is the only thing that actually does, in reality, create jobs.
Thankful for the technology that makes your life easier and all the cool toys it provides, from smartphones to the cloud to live streaming? Thank government agency DARPA, which really did invent the Internet (with support from congressman Al Gore).
Thankful for your home? Thank the skilled and probably unionized workers who built it, and the thousands of public employees - also probably unionized - who provide water and electricity to your home, maintain the roads around your home, and protect your home from fire, floods and criminals.
Thankful for your children? Thank the teachers and principals and janitors who toil thanklessly in the public school system to produce worthy citizens.
Thankful for your elderly parents? Thank Social Security and Medicare, and the many public employees providing services to the aged, from Meals on Wheels to nursing home inspections.
Thankful for the end of the Iraq war and the return of our troops? Thank President Barack Obama.
Thankful to live in the Greatest Nation in the History of the World? Thank the protesters, the rebels, the nonconformists, the communists, the pacifists, the socialists, the Black Panthers, the feminists, the gays, the atheists and every other despised activist who fought to fix what was wrong with this country, and who still fight every day.
There is no invisible sky wizard dropping presents on your head like so much birdshit. Everything you have, everything you've done, is the result of action by actual human beings, including yourself.
Today, the Associated Press (AP) has a story where it estimates the costs of police securing for the various ongoing protest occupations across the country. The AP roughly estimates that these occupations over two months in eighteen major cities cost taxpayers $13 million. Right-wing media outlets are already using this number to claim that the protests are too costly to maintain.
But the AP piece does not provide the neccessary context to put this number into perspective. $13 million for policing of ongoing protests all over the country for two months is not a particularly large sum. For example, the 2004 Republican National Committee protests, which lasted for a single week and took place in a single location, cost $50 million to secure. A small tea party rally in November 2010 that attracted only a few dozen people cost $14,000, paid for by official congressional money.
The cost of securing these protests against economic inequality and political corruption also pales in comparison to one large figure: the wealth destroyed by Wall Street's recession. The recession caused by Wall Street's misdeeds destroyed $50 trillion of wealth globally by 2009, $20 trillion of that wealth in the United States alone. ThinkProgress has assembled the following chart to visualize these comparative costs:
None of this invalidates a discussion about the costs of securing the protests, but it does put it in context. Additionally, if the Associated Press wants to probe the costs of the demonstrations, it might also ask why police are using such expensive and heavy-handed tactics against demonstrators.
Illinois Republicans Bravely Propose To Secede From Chicago
Two brave Illinois GOP state legislators are so sick of Chicago's gays and liberals and their gay liberal mayor and its gay $532 billion economy and its gay St. Patrick's Day Parade that they have finally just proposed the obvious: wall the damn place off, and let everyone else in Illinois form their own state. Chicago will get to keep everything that is currently located there, and the freedom-loving hillbillies will get to keep the other 16% of the state's $630 billion economy and the state prisons. (PSSST, TAKE THE DEAL, CHICAGO.) Because, why not? Illinois is America's "microcosm," so what better place to finally give up on "America" as a place where competing viewpoints work to coexist and just hold this experiment already?
Reps. Bill Mitchell and Adam Brown claim their downstate constituents "are tired of Chicago dictating its views to the rest of us," through democracy and the votes of the state legislature, like Stalinist Russia. Hm, so who would they rather resemble?
Rep. Mitchell brought up the state of Indiana multiple times Tuesday morning and said that he would like Illinois to become more like its neighbor to the east. "Take a look at Indiana. Their population is similar to the new Illinois we are proposing. But there are some fundamental differences between Indiana and Illinois as it exists now: Indiana doesn't have a budget deficit; they haven't raised taxes to pay for more government spending; they have a lower unemployment rate than Illinois. And what's the biggest difference? Indiana doesn't have Chicago."
Oh look! History just popped a strange cherry, it's the first time "someone genuinely wishes he lived in Indiana." [WANDtv.com]