Saturday, March 23, 2013

March 23

This is the list of Senators, Republican and Democratic who voted to endorse Keystone. No photos, no satirical meme. Just the names. Time to call them out....again.
Congressional Switchboard: 202-224-3121. 24 hours 7 days per week

Alexander (R-TN)
Ayotte (R-NH)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Baucus (D-MT)
Begich (D-AK)
Bennet (D-CO)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Burr (R-NC)
Carper (D-DE)
Casey (D-PA)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coats (R-IN)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Coons (D-DE)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
Cruz (R-TX)
Donnelly (D-IN)
Enzi (R-WY)
Fischer (R-NE)
Flake (R-AZ)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hagan (D-NC)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heitkamp (D-ND)
Heller (R-NV)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Johnson (D-SD)
Johnson (R-WI)
Kirk (R-IL)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lee (R-UT)
Manchin (D-WV)
McCain (R-AZ)
McCaskill (D-MO)
McConnell (R-KY)
Moran (R-KS)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-FL)
Paul (R-KY)
Portman (R-OH)
Pryor (D-AR)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rubio (R-FL)
Scott (R-SC)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Tester (D-MT)
Thune (R-SD)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)
Warner (D-VA)
Wicker (R-MS)

'Senate's Big Oil Benefactors' Slammed for Keystone XL Vote - 10 KXL amendment co-sponsors took $8 million from fossil fuel industry



Am I the only one who's enjoying Bibi Netanyahu's obvious discomfort during Obama's visit? The latest is what I'm sure was an ugly call with Turkey's PM, where Netanyahu apologized for the 2010 flotilla raid that killed some Turks. But, overall, the news I've seen has been a mash note to Obama.Here's an example from Haartez:

Obama's visit is a royal visit of love, says Ari Shavit, referencing the poem by Israel Pincas. Here the president displayed in his actions a heart yearning for peace, with perhaps a touch of naivete, while his speech in Jerusalem served as a softly admonishing wake-up call for Israelis to enact a promising future.

Sometimes it takes someone from the outside, says Yossi Verter, to tell it like it is. [...]

After Obama's visit, it will be more difficult for his rivals to claim that he has Israel's worst interests at heart, says Chemi Shalev. [...]

Haaretz is not Bibi's paper, but it's pretty clear that Bibi is the guy who came at the king and missed, and there's some making up to do. Realistically, Obama is highly constrained by the pro-Israel lobby, but there's a hint of truth in this Onion piece: Netanyahu, the leader of a state that is completely dependent on our money, was a fool to gamble on Romney, and the Israeli reaction to Obama's visit makes him look even more foolish.


Would someone please ask Bill O'Reilly about the connection between duckies, bunnies, eggs, and Jesus on the cross?

Bill O'Reilly has an angry about the "War on Easter":

After declaring victory in the War on Christmas, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly had another budding battle to discuss: the War on Easter.

O'Reilly takes wars on various holidays quite seriously. Before Christmas last year, O'Reilly invited an atheist leader onto his program, called him a fascist, and argued that Christianity is not a religion but a philosophy.

Like he described during his segments about the War on Christmas, O'Reilly said that "secular progressives" were "running wild" with Obama as president, and were trying to "diminish any kind of religion."

O'Reilly listed five public schools he said are replacing the word "Easter" with the word "Spring." The school are reportedly hosting "Spring Egg Hunts."

"I know it's stupid, you know it's stupid," O'Reilly said. He added that secular progressives were trying to marginalize Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny as an attempt to "set the stage for an entirely secular society, like they have in Scandinavia."

Conservative pundit Laura Ingraham joined O'Reilly on the segment. "I think you're onto something," she said.

Later, O'Reilly laid out his course of action if he were president and dealing with a War on Easter. "You know what I would do if I were president? I'd name the [school] districts we just named here and say 'Knock it off.' Respect Easter. Easter's a good thing. You don't have to believe in Jesus. The kids like it. It's not a spring egg. It's an Easter egg," he said.

I wonder if anyone told Bill O'Reilly that what he's doing is defending pagan symbols? Has anyone ever asked him what duckies and bunnies and eggs have to do with the crucifixion and resurrection? Does he think the risen Jesus was eating Cadbury Cream Eggs while waiting to emerge from the tomb? Or biting the ears off of hollow chocolate bunnies? Does he really want to defend a holiday the name of which is derived from that of aGermanic pagan goddess? Is he aware that the bunnies he's defending from those evil secular humanists were symbols of the pagan spring festival because they, well, fuck like bunnies and reproduce like rabbits? And that eggs are a symbol of fertility? And that what he's really defending is a pagan fertility rite? Yes, the Christians, just as they did with Christmas, decided when they ripped off the pagan Equinox festival, that the eggs and related fertility symbols really represented the resurrection of Christ. But that didn't happen until much, much later.

So what I say is Let the Pagan Symbols fly! Decorate the schools eith eggs and duckies and bunnies! Celebrate the equinox far and wide! Just don't tell Bill O'Reilly that what he's defending is a bunch of Wiccans and Druids.


New York City Cop Testifies That He Was Told To Target Young Black Men

Health Insurers Threaten To Increase Premiums, Even As Profits Soar

Yesterday we brought you the fun news of a state of Utah elementary school art contest with the awesome theme Where Would WE Be Without Oil, Gas and Mining, in honor of — wait for it — Earth Day!

(In case you were wondering, no: the state of Utah was not going for a Nothing But Flowers utopia horrifying dystopia, but rather wanted its schoolchildren to focus on the benefits to humanity — AND THE ENVIRONMENT — wrought by the oil, gas and mining companies. We will repeat: IN HONOR OF EARTH DAY.)

Since we are not Utah elementary school students, and none of you Utahnkers made your grade-school children available as an art-laundering front, we decided to hold our branch of the contest here. Did you deliver? What do you think?

Keep reading:

So, yes, a lawyer in the Dominican Republic says that a mystery man named Carlos who purported to rep The Daily Caller offered him $5,000 to help to find women who would say that Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) paid them for sex. But … he also claims three other media outlets —Telemundo, Univision, CNN Espanol — also enlisted him to help find such women. And he tells Univision, on camera, that he can't remember who from that network contacted him. Straining credulity much?

Alas, this still doesn't augur very well for The Daily Caller. The same lawyer figured prominently in its original story on Menendez's purported sexual escapades, as a lawyer for the women who was present for their interviews with The Daily Caller.


North Dakota Passes Unconstitutional Ban On All Abortions

North Dakota Republicans widened the War on Women today by passing a ban on all abortions, among other things, by declaring that fertilized eggs are people too.

North Dakota lawmakers voted on Friday afternoon to pass a "personhood" abortion ban, which would endow fertilized eggs with all the rights of U.S. citizens and effectively outlaw abortion. The measure, which passed the Senate last month, passed the House by a 57-35 vote and will now head to Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple's desk.

The personhood ban will have far-reaching consequences even beyond abortion care, since it will charge doctors who damage embryos with criminal negligence. Doctors in the state say it will also prevent them from performingin vitro fertilization, and some medical professionals have vowed to leave the state if it is signed into law.

As others have pointed out, this will also ban the Plan B "morning after" pill and other forms of birth control.

No word on whether or not the state lawmakers who voted for the bill put on a smile while casting their votes.


Suspect in Colorado Official Shooting Was White Supremacist

On the day the state of Colorado was poised to enact new gun control laws, the head of the state Department of Corrections, Tom Clements, was shot dead in his home from an unknown assailant.

A man driving a vehicle that matched witness descriptions of the vehicle driven by the man who shot Clements lead police on a high-speed chase yesterday which resulted in his death. Police are now investigating the man as a suspect in the murder.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has a detailed profile of the suspect who, evidently, has ties to white supremacists.

The apparent suspect was identified in several reports as Evan Spencer Ebel, a 28-year-old Denver parolee who was shot to death Thursday after first wounding a North Texas sheriff's deputy and then crashing his car during a chase that reached speeds of over 100 mph. Officials told the Post and other Colorado news outlets that the Cadillac Ebel was driving is similar to a car that was described by witnesses as waiting outside Clements home for about a half hour before the official was murdered.

Ebel was identified as a member of the 211 Crew, also known as the Aryan Alliance, a particularly vicious regional white supremacist prison gang whose size has been estimated at somewhere between several hundred and a thousand members, all in Colorado. [...]

The 211 Crew may be most infamous for two of its members, Jeremiah Barnum and Nathan Thill, two men who were convicted of charges related to the 1997 bus-stop murder of Senegalese immigrant Oumar Dia. Dia was murdered, Thill once said, because he was "wearing the enemy's uniform" — his black skin. [...]

The 211 Crew is known for its paramilitary structure, with members using titles like major, captain and lieutenant, and for elaborate verbal and written codes that all members are required to learn.

The reason we need gun control in America is because of men like this. Because the very real threat of being shot by a white madman on a personal crusade is much greater than the imagined threat of being lorded over by the U.N. or some other unspecified oppressor. And a proper, universal background check system would prevent convicted barbarians from picking up a gun on a whim.

No, such a system would not prevent all crimes or all shootings, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't do what we can to stop some of them. And the good news is some states are adopting universal background checks on their own while similar legislation remains alive and breathing in the Senate.

Considering that it's been 14 years since Columbine and that Colorado just enacted new gun control laws, it's quite obvious that any meaningful change is going to take a great deal of time. And a few more massacres like the Aurora theater shooting.


This is disgusting:

The National Rifle Association came under fire late Thursday from members of a gun-control advocacy group in Newtown, Conn., after reports surfaced of Newtown residents receiving robocalls and pro-gun postcards from the NRA.

The advocacy group, the Newtown Action Alliance, posted a Facebook message Thursday about the calls, prompting responses from people who said they'd received communications from the NRA and were upset by them.

"I received one of these," Newtown resident Christopher Wenis wrote on Facebook Thursday afternoon. "I was insulted and offended." Wenis told The Huffington Post in an interview Friday night that in the 36 hours since he first posted his response, he received two more robocalls from the NRA, one later on Thursday night and one Friday evening.

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