Thursday, August 23, 2012

Headlines - Thursday August 23

Americans throw away 40 percent of their food, 20 pounds of food per person per month, according to a new study by the Natural Resources Defense Council: 

Not only does this mean that Americans are throwing out the equivalent of $165 billion each year, but the waste also consumes 25 percent of all freshwater and huge amounts of unnecessary chemicals, energy and land. Most of that uneaten food ends up rotting in landfills. There generates almost 25 percent of U.S. methane emissions.
Todd Akin keeps a photo of Joseph Mengele in his wallet, right next to the photo of his wife and two daughters:

The theory behind Rep. Todd Akin's (R-MO) assertion earlier this week that women who are victims of "legitimate" rape would not get pregnant appears to be based on 1972 research that cites experiments done in Nazi concentration camps, a Missouri newspaper reported on Monday.


Nazis reportedly tested the theory "by selecting women who were about to ovulate and sending them to the gas chambers, only to bring them back after their realistic mock-killing, to see what the effect this had on their ovulatory patterns. An extremely high percentage of these women did not ovulate," the article said.


I'm fucking exhausted by all this Republican stupidity.


Ryan jumps "over the pail" - by digby

Ryan was questioned about his horrendous record on women's rights and abortion yesterday. And he proved what a hot potato it is with his lies, obfuscations and non-denial denials (You can see the whole thing here):

"His statements were outrageous, over the pail. I don't know anybody who would agree with that. Rape is rape period, end of story," Ryan told KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano.

Ryan, like Romney, distanced himself from Akin's remarks, but in Congress, he joined Akin in opposing abortions even when a woman has been raped.

Delano: "Should abortions to be available to women who are raped?"

Ryan: "Well, look, I'm proud of my pro-life record. And I stand by my pro-life record in Congress. It's something I'm proud of. But Mitt Romney is the top of the ticket and Mitt Romney will be president and he will set the policy of the Romney administration."

Despite Ryan's views, Romney says he will allow exceptions for rape and incest. Ryan also seemed to back away from earlier views on types of rape.

Delano: "You sponsored legislation that has the language 'forcible rape.' What is forcible rape as opposed…"

Ryan: "Rape is rape. Rape is rape, period. End of story."

Delano: "So that forcible rape language meant nothing to you at the time?"

Ryan: "Rape is rape and there's no splitting hairs over rape."

As for the president's claim that Romney-Ryan will restrict birth control, Ryan calls that ridiculous.

"Nobody is proposing to deny birth control to anybody," says Ryan.*

First of all, what the hell is "over the pail?" I thought it might be some Wisconsin cow vernacular that I'd never heard, but it doesn't come up on google. Neither does "over the pale." So it would appear that he meant "beyond the pale" which means that Mr Ryan has more in common with his predecessor on the wingnut VP circuit, Sarah Palin, than we realized.

Anyway, that's hardly important compared to everything else he said, which is bullshit. He's obviously running from his clear record as a hard core anti-abortion zealot and these local reporters aren't going to be able to pin him down on it.

But the birth control answer is such a straight up lie that I can hardly believe he didn't start smirking like Beavis and Butthead when he said it. Both he and Romney have promised to shut down Planned Parenthood, they both agree that no insurance plans should be forced to offer it, they are both in favor of allowing "conscience exceptions" to anyone who can't bring themselves to participate in contraceptive evil. Basically, he's saying "sure you sluts can have your birth control --- if you can find it."

Just because he has boyish looks and a winsome smile doesn't mean he isn't a hard-core wingnut crusader with a record to match Todd Akin's. It's going to be interesting to see if the Democrats and their allies are clever enough to successfully hang him --
and the GOP generally -- with it in the eyes of the public.

Ryan, of course, is against the exceptions for rape and incest, but says he'll defer to Romney's views -- which are frankly bizarre in light of the fact that he's in favor of "personhood" which would render any abortion murder. But then he's not exactly known for his philosophical consistency.ip. You can see the whole thing here.


Satan and Muslims and Beck, Oh My! 

Meet Elder Chris Stewart, father of six, husband of a full-time homemaker, Mormon Tabernacle Choir lyricist, priesthood holder, business consultant, and the next Congressman from Utah's Second Congressional District.

Oh, and he's also an author whom many describe as the "Mormon Tim Lehaye," since his novels are set in the end times (before the saints build New Jerusalem in Jackson County, Missouri.)

Here are a couple of examples of his work (
published by Glenn Beck's "Mercury Ink):

From "
Darkness Of This World:"
As Saudi Prince Abdullah al-Raman moves closer to taking over the kingdom's throne and putting the attack into motion, it becomes clear that only a few people have the knowledge and ability to stop him. But will they find the strength to stand up to the Prince and his Master, or will they fail and leave the U.S. and Israel to face the grave consequences?

The war that has been raging since the beginning of time continues toward its final battle. Lucifer and the forces of Darkness have plotted to destroy all that is good in the world—including the United States—by launching an audacious attack that is meant to forever change the balance of power in the world.
From "Son of the Morning:"
The death of the Saudi King has removed the final barrier between peace and chaos. Prince Abdullah al-Raman, a pawn of Lucifer and the Forces of Darkness has taken over the throne and is now in a position to draw Israel and the United States into an unprecedented war.
As much as I like what I see in these short passages, I think Elder Stewart falls a little short in vilifying Islam. Sure, associating Muslims with Lucifer is a good start, but where are the accusations of marxism, furrinerism, and teleprompter use. I worry that Elder Stewart may not have what it takes to serve in Congress.
Krugman: Unethical Commentary, Newsweek Edition
Brace yourself for the "climate change isn't real" week in Tampa. This is where we will have the opportunity to listen to people discuss the benefits of rape, talk about the world being created in seven days and ignoring science. The Republican Convention ought to be another mind numbing event. AFP:
The Arctic ice cap is melting at a startlingly rapid rate and may shrink to its smallest-ever level within weeks as the planet's temperatures rise, US scientists said Tuesday.

Researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder said that the summer ice in the Arctic was already nearing its lowest level recorded, even though the summer melt season is not yet over.

"The numbers are coming in and we are looking at them with a sense of amazement," said Mark Serreze, director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center at the university.

"If the melt were to just suddenly stop today, we would be at the third lowest in the satellite record. We've still got another two weeks of melt to go, so I think we're very likely to set a new record," he told AFP.
Also brace yourself for keynote speaker Chris Christie as he talks about the benefits of austerity days after his state reported the worst unemployment levels in thirty five years.
Meet the NRA's sexist, bigoted, vulgar, birther board member Todd Rathner

Asshole extraordinaire Steve King is concerned about the fact that Iowa State University has multicultural groups, because Multiculturals are nothing but whiny bitches who haven't yet beheld the tremendous blessings in this great society of ours, and they do nothing but complain all the live long day:

I went to the Iowa State website and [...] I typed in "multicultural" and it came back to me, at the time, 59 different multicultural groups listed to operate on campus at Iowa State. It started with Asians and it ended with Zeitgeist, so from A to Z, and most of them were victims' groups, victimology, people that feel sorry for themselves and they're out there recruiting our young people to be part of the group that feels sorry for themselves. [...]

And then, you're brought into a group of people that are–have a grievance against society rather than understand there's a tremendous blessing in this society.

I mean, what the hell, minorities? Steve King is doing the best he can to make you feel welcome! He has yearned for the days when only white dudes who owned property could vote; he thinks dog-fighting is super awesome; he has compared immigrants to dogs; he has pretended that rape victims are an urban legend; and he has claimed that diversity is bullshit and that English should be the official language of these United States.

What more does he have to do to get you to quit bitching about everything all the time? Treat you like a human being or some shit?

You ask for too much!


Jill: They Didn't Build That


National Review: Women 'evolved' to prefer superior rich men like Romney


The middle class is shrinking, and so is its share of America's income and wage growth, according to a new study released Thursday. The study from the Pew Research Center found that the middle class — defined as Americans with incomes between $39,000 and $118,000 — fell backward in income for the first time since the end of World War II, and the number of Americans who fit into that category shrunk from 61 percent in 1971 to just 51 percent in 2011.

The share of income that went to the middle class also fell during the first decade of the 21st century, a 10-year period that featured two damaging recessions, including the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and a major housing crisis. The share of income that went to the wealthiest Americans, however, has grown substantially since 1970, as the Washington Post notes:

In 1970, the share of U.S. income that went to the middle class was 62 percent, while wealthier Americans received just 29 percent. But by 2010, the middle class garnered 45 percent of the nation's income, tying a low first reached in 2006, compared to 46 percent for upper-income Americans.

Since 2000, the median income for America's middle class has fallen from $72,956 to $69,487.

The Pew survey is the latest to note rising income inequality in America as the middle class continues to struggle while the wealthy remain relatively prosperous. Income inequality in the U.S. is now comparable, if not worse, than it is in countries like Ivory Coast and Pakistan, as middle class wages have stagnated. A 2010 Census Bureau study found that incomes for the bottom tier of Americans fell four times faster than they did for the wealthiest after the recession.

The "lost decade" for the middle class corresponds to declining tax rates for the wealthy and a growth in corporate profits. In the last 12 years, incomes for the wealthiest 400 Americans quadrupled even as their tax rates were halved, and executive compensation has grown 127 times faster over the last three decades than worker pay, one study found.


Why Missouri's Students Might Believe Todd Akin's Junk Science


Mitt Romney met Todd Akin doctor John Willke during 2012 campaign

Mitt Romney met John Willke, the doctor credited with popularising Todd Akin's controversial views on rape and abortion, during the current election campaign and told him they agreed on "almost everything," Dr Willke said.



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