Friday, August 23, 2013

August 23

Taking a break again for a while. I just can't bring myself to read the news right now, it's too depressing. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

August 16

Off to the Irish canyons to do some canyoneering for a few days. Talk amongst yourselves!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

August 15

BP Cries Over Spilt Oil, Sues U.S. Government



The Hunger Gains




Two-for-one Happy Hour - Bacardi Lifetime Achievement Winner Peggy Noonan thinks that The Kenyan Usurper should "have the press office issue a release saying his reaction to finding out a rodeo clown was rudely spoofing him, was, "So what?" Say he loves free speech, including inevitably derision directed at him, and he does not wish for the Missouri state fair to fire the guy, and hopes those politicians (unctuously, excessively, embarrassingly) damning the clown and the crowd would pipe down and relax." Because: Healthcare. I'm not kidding. The column is on heath care, but starts with this. (Peggy Noonan's Blog)


ThinkProgress: A top American distance runner dedicated the silver medal he won at the track and field World Championships in Moscow to his gay and lesbian friends, becoming the first athlete to openly defy Russia's new anti-gay law that outlaws "homosexual propaganda." Nick Symmonds won the silver medal in the 800-meters Tuesday, then broke a previous pledge to not speak out against the law while at the championships by telling a Russian news outlet that he had no choice but to say something.

"As much as I can speak out about it, I believe that all humans deserve equality as however God made them," Symmonds told Russia's R-Sport. "Whether you're gay, straight, black, white, we all deserve the same rights. If there's anything I can do to champion the cause and further it, I will, shy of getting arrested."

"I respect Russians' ability to govern their people," he added. "I disagree with their laws. I do have respect for this nation. I disagree with their rules."
According to the report, "Other athletes have pledged to speak out against the law during the Winter Olympics, which open in Sochi in February. Openly gay American figure skater Johnny Weir has said he is willing to get arrested during the Games in Russia, while gay speed skater Blake Skjellerup, who is from New Zealand, has pledged to wear a rainbow pin during competition in Sochi. The IOC said this week that it may punish athletes who speak out against the law during the Olympics for violating its rule against political statements."

I thought that an international incident was inevitable and Symmonds is proving me right. If Russia ignores his "gay propaganda." then that practically guarantees further high profile protests — i.e., the "gayest Olympics ever." If they bust him, they'll endure international condemnation. They really are in a no-win situation here.

No matter what happens, getting the Winter Olympics seems more of a headache than a victory for Russia, since a biggest benefit of being the host country is usually free advertising and boosterism. The image Russia (and any protests) will be broadcasting to the world will not be positive and, in the end, will do them more harm than good. Any company looking to avoid bad PR would be well-advised to have as little to do with Russia as possible.  


The Snowden Effect

Hundreds of disgruntled, unemployed and very bored hackers. What could possibly go wrong?

Army Gen. Keith B. Alexander, the NSA's director, told a cybersecurity conference at Fordham University in New York last week that almost the agency's entire crew of systems administrators is being cut.

"What we're in the process of doing – not fast enough – is reducing our system administrators by about 90 percent," he said in remarks earlier reported by Reuters.

Many of those systems administrators are contractors, like Snowden was before he fled the United States and Booz Allen Hamilton fired him. Instead of the 1,000 systems administrators NSA uses, Alexander wants to move more of the operation to the cyber cloud, called the Intelligence Community's Information Technology Enterprise (ICITE),which relies on a network of computers linked on the Internet.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

August 14

Joe Biden Gun owner


Gian Gentile, a retired Army Colonel who served in Iraq, points out that Iraq was a failure in nation building and we could have exited Afghanistan in 2002 with pretty much the same result:

Yet, even with all this evidence that nation-building operations conducted at gunpoint don't turn out well, some policymakers hold fast to the idea that these kinds of operations are crucial, arguing that we have achieved many of our goals in Iraq and Afghanistan. The purveyors of this notion are deeply attached to a narrative that emerged from analysis of the Vietnam War and took hold during this past decade of American wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This story holds that nation-building wars in foreign lands can be won, as long as the hide-bound conventional armies that fight them then transform themselves, led by "savior generals," into nation-builders. This is the view embraced by popular historian Victor Davis Hanson, who has argued that by the end of 2006, it appeared the war in Iraq was lost, only to be saved by the "maverick savior general, David Petraeus."

Considering the current conditions in Iraq, it is hard to take Hanson seriously. But the narrative is important because it continues to be deployed to convince people that American wars in the troubled spots of the world can be made to work as long as the U.S. military tweaks its tactics under the tutelage of generals like Petraeus.

Gentile's observations are pretty much conventional wisdom among the dirty hippies, but when a war veteran says them, too, at least a few more very serious people will listen.


Arizona Republicans Already Working On 2020 Gerrymander Plan


You might think that after all the foofaraw and fuck-tussling over the birth certificate of Barack Hussein Obama, there's no way in hell that the birther crowd would ever support a candidate who was indisputably born in a totally different country that is not the U.S.A., right?

Don't be silly. Birthers are coming forward to say they just can't get enough of Ted Cruz, who was born in Calgary, British Columbia Alberta, Canada  [Doktor Zoom sucks at geography. This would worry him if "Canada" were a real country] — even though there are like three different countries named right there. But birthers are saying, nahh, man, it's OK, because even though his father was a Cuban citizen, his mom was an American citizen, so it's cool, he's totes American. It's a totally different case from that of the Kenyan Usurper, whose father was Kenyan and whose mother was an American citizen, because Ted Cruz never lived in Indonesia or ate a dog or something argle bargle beagle. READ MORE »


Pat Buchanan is a really big fan of Russia's anti-gay law. I'm sure you're appropriately surprised. - See more at:


Remember Pres. Obama's promise to review NSA domestic surveillance? Yeah, that turned out to be a joke.


6 Ways Rabid Republicans Are Declaring War On America



Apparently it took a serial rapist to convince the Norfolk Police Department that classifying rape allegations as invalid by default is a very bad idea.

According to the Virginian-Pilot, a 22-year-old woman's case prompted Norfolk police chief Mike Goldsmith to update the policy so that officers must now assume rape victims are telling the truth.

The woman reported the attack immediately to police, only to be told, "If we find out that you're lying, this will be a felony charge." Before giving her a medical examination, officers subjected the woman to interrogations during which they said things like, "You're telling us a different story than you told … the other detectives," and "This only happened hours ago. Why can't you remember?" Having had enough, the woman cut off the interview.

The police eventually arrested and charged the attacker for multiple other sexual assaults and felonies, and Goldsmith apologized for mishandling the woman's initial allegations.

Unfortunately, the Norfolk Police Department is not alone today as the University of Southern California stands accused of mislabeling sexual assaults to keep their statistics lower.

Mostov joined with several other USC students in filing a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education against the university over the weekend, alleging violations of the Clery Act, a federal law mandating accurate and timely reporting of crime on campus, including sexual violence. Mostov said she believes her case shows USC's routine failures in responding to sexual assaults and reporting the crimes.

USC is "persistently underreporting sexual battery, sexual assault, and rape in the Annual Clery Security Report by … categorizing instances of 'rape' as 'personal injury,' 'domestic dispute,' and other less serious crimes or non-crimes," the complaint says.

And according to congressman Steve King, this pristine, non-violent civilization of ours will be spoiled if we allow immigrants into the country.


There are so many stories in the news today about guns being accidentally discharged and wounding or killing someone, there's no way I could share them all, but here's a few that caught my attention.

First we have a man shot in the ass by his 3-year-old child.

A man who was target shooting south of Green Valley was shot in the buttocks by his 3-year-old son Monday.

The man, 36, was target shooting in a desert area southeast of Interstate 19, near the Canoa Road exit shortly before 6:30 p.m., said Tom Louis, battalion chief for the Green Valley Fire District. [...]

No information was released about how the child got a hold of the rifle.

We also have a gun safety instructor who shot one of his students in gun safety class. Whoops?

LANCASTER, Ohio — A firearms instructor accidentally shot a student while teaching a gun-safety class on Saturday in Fairfield County to people seeking permits to carry concealed weapons. [...]

Dunlap apparently didn't know that the gun was loaded, Piemonte said — "That's my guess."

The bullet was slowed down by hitting the desk first. It then ricocheted into Piemonte's right arm between his elbow and armpit, he said.

A man in Arizona was killed by his wife as she was handing an inexplicably-loaded shotgun to him.

PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. (AP) – A Prescott Valley man is dead as a result of what police say was an apparently accidental shooting involving a shotgun being handled by his wife.

Police say 56-year-old Gary Wingate was fatally wounded in the torso when the gun discharged as his wife handed it to him at his request.

And in Seattle, a passenger shot a bus driver for asking him to pay his fare.

SEATTLE (AP) — When a 64-year-old transit bus driver saw three people board at the rear of his bus during the Monday morning rush hour in downtown Seattle, he asked them to come up front to pay.

Two did. The third passenger paced back and forth, then hit the driver and shot him twice before running away, acting Seattle Police Chief Jim Pugel said.

The good news is brave men are willing to carry their guns into Starbucks to stand up for your right to accidentally, or purposely, shoot your father, wife, husband, students, or bus driver.


And you thought Anthony Weiner had a 'previous indiscretions' problem…

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah teenager arrested last year in a Columbine-inspired plot to blow up his high school was eliminated in the race Tuesday for mayor of a small Utah city.

Results released by officials Tuesday evening showed 18-year-old Joshua Kyler Hoggan received less than 5 percent of the vote in the primary, preventing him from moving on as a general election candidate on the ballot in the Roy, Utah, mayoral race…

"People should trust me because I have proven one thing: That I am human," Hoggan said in an email before the election to The Associated Press. "I have made mistakes, just like the rest of us. We've all made mistakes in our pasts, and I am no exception."

Hoggan pleaded guilty in 2012 to possession of a weapon of mass destruction. Police said that Hoggan, then 16, and an older classmate at Roy High School spent months plotting an attack inspired by the 1999 Columbine shootings. Hoggan even visited with the Columbine principal about the shootings and security measures.

A classmate tipped authorities to the plot after receiving text messages from Hoggan, who bragged that he planned to steal a plane from a nearby airport. The boy had logged hundreds of hours on a flight simulator program to prepare. His classmate, Dallin Morgan, pleaded guilty to criminal mischief and was given a 105-day jail sentence.

Ritchie, mayor since 2006, said Hoggan had every right to be on the ballot but he questions his motives and whether he's truly rehabilitated. He said many in Roy are still shaken by Hoggan's bombing plan and are perplexed why he's in the race.

"I'm not so sure how sincere he is," said Ritchie, who never met Hoggan. "I think he's in it for the notoriety."…

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

August 13

This is schadenfreudelicious!


Congressman Fear Mongers On Minimum Wage: 'You Guys Wanna Pay $20 For A Hamburger?'


Political Correctness Runs Amok As Decent People Not Amused By Rodeo Clown's Hysterical Blackface Routine


A Tennessee judge has ordered that a baby's name be changed from "Messiah" to "Martin," explaining that There Can Be Only One:

"The word Messiah is a title and it's a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ," Judge [Lu Ann] Ballew said.

The parents had gone to court in a child support case, and could not agree on what the 7-month-old's last name would be. They had not asked for any  help with his first name, which they agreed on. Judge Ballew ruled that the child's name will combine both parents' names, and will be "Martin DeShawn McCullough." The baby's mother intends to appeal, and we support her right to give her child a perfectly awful name, because Freedom. Maybe she should name the kid Freedom? READ MORE »


What if you gave a hate-rally and nobody came? - Iowa's favorite nut (with calves like cantaloupes) Steve King hosted a Stop Amnesty rally and almost no one showed up, except the photographer who snapped the pictures of him addressing, well, almost no one. (Think Progress)


The last word on the amazingly insensitive plan to display open firearms at a Newtown, CT Starbucks -- thwarted by Starbucks themselves -- from the co-founder of Sandy Hook Promise. The event was actually part of a nationwide protest, organized in part by a white nationalist hate group. The gatherings were scheduled to coincide with "Robert E. Lee Day." 


I often say that conservatives never think anything all the way through. They just think until they reach the conclusion they want, then stop thinking before reason screws everything up. Rush Limbaugh proves this by arguing that Christians can't believe in global warming, because only God has the ability to do that sort of damage. If Rush had followed this own thought to its logical conclusion, he'd also have to argue that nuclear weapons are some sort of ridiculous hoax. 


Sen. Ted Cruz's father is as batshit crazy as he is. He may even be farther gone.


If you want to see what a real death panel looks like, just glance at the comments made by ordinary Americans under this ABC News story about a black teen denied a heart transplant because he has bad grades.

A Georgia teenager needs a lifesaving heart transplant, but his family says low grades and trouble with the law have kept him off the transplant list.

Doctors at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston told the family of 15-year-old Anthony Stokes that they won't put him on the transplant list because of his history of "noncompliance," according to ABC's Atlanta affiliate WSBTV. [...]

Anthony has an enlarged heart and has been given six months to live, according to WSBTV.

Here's the thing: I could write a story about a white high school classmate who is on the football team who has been arrested and has bad grades, and the comments I would receive after writing that he has been denied a heart transplant and will die in six months would be that of abject outrage.

Instead, because this is a criminalized 15-year-old black teen with bad grades, you receive comments such as "he shoulda thought about being a hoodlum."

Mother fuckers.

Who needs "government death panels" when ordinary Americans are more than willing to condemn people to death because they might be hoodlums?


Attorney General Eric Holder delivered remarks to the American Bar Association today and he called for an end to mandatory minimum sentencing. He also delivered an harsh critique of the current state of our justice system as a whole.

You can read his full remarks here at the Department of Justice, but this part in particular stands out to me. And it is long overdue.

As the so-called "war on drugs" enters its fifth decade, we need to ask whether it, and the approaches that comprise it, have been truly effective – and build on the Administration's efforts, led by the Office of National Drug Control Policy, to usher in a new approach. And with an outsized, unnecessarily large prison population, we need to ensure that incarceration is used to punish, deter, and rehabilitate – not merely to warehouse and forget.

Today, a vicious cycle of poverty, criminality, and incarceration traps too many Americans and weakens too many communities. And many aspects of our criminal justice system may actually exacerbate these problems, rather than alleviate them.

It's clear – as we come together today – that too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long, and for no truly good law enforcement reason. It's clear, at a basic level, that 20th-century criminal justice solutions are not adequate to overcome our 21st-century challenges. And it is well past time to implement common sense changes that will foster safer communities from coast to coast.


As we come together this morning, this same promise must lead us all to acknowledge that – although incarceration has a significant role to play in our justice system – widespread incarceration at the federal, state, and local levels is both ineffective and unsustainable. It imposes a significant economic burden – totaling $80 billion in 2010 alone – and it comes with human and moral costs that are impossible to calculate.

As a nation, we are coldly efficient in our incarceration efforts. While the entire U.S. population has increased by about a third since 1980, the federal prison population has grown at an astonishing rate – by almost 800 percent. It's still growing – despite the fact that federal prisons are operating at nearly 40 percent above capacity. Even though this country comprises just 5 percent of the world's population, we incarcerate almost a quarter of the world's prisoners. More than 219,000 federal inmates are currently behind bars. Almost half of them are serving time for drug-related crimes, and many have substance use disorders. Nine to 10 million more people cycle through America's local jails each year. And roughly 40 percent of former federal prisoners – and more than 60 percent of former state prisoners – are rearrested or have their supervision revoked within three years after their release, at great cost to American taxpayers and often for technical or minor violations of the terms of their release.

As a society, we pay much too high a price whenever our system fails to deliver outcomes that deter and punish crime, keep us safe, and ensure that those who have paid their debts have the chance to become productive citizens. Right now, unwarranted disparities are far too common. As President Obama said last month, it's time to ask tough questions about how we can strengthen our communities, support young people, and address the fact that young black and Latino men are disproportionately likely to become involved in our criminal justice system – as victims as well as perpetrators.

We also must confront the reality that – once they're in that system – people of color often face harsher punishments than their peers. One deeply troubling report, released in February, indicates that – in recent years – black male offenders have received sentences nearly 20 percent longer than those imposed on white males convicted of similar crimes. This isn't just unacceptable – it is shameful. It's unworthy of our great country, and our great legal tradition. And in response, I have today directed a group of U.S. Attorneys to examine sentencing disparities, and to develop recommendations on how we can address them.

It's going to be ugly — in fact it already is — but it can't be overstated how important this overdue conversation will be. And hold onto your butts, because things are going to become a lot more racist before they get better.


If this story is accurate, it's possible San Diego Mayor Bob Filner has been doing more than just making lewd comments and inappropriately touching women.

SAN DIEGO – As federal, state and local officials investigate Mayor Bob Filner, Team 10 has learned that members of the mayor's security detail have provided information to authorities, regarding the mayor taking different women to a popular downtown San Diego hotel.

Team 10 has also obtained some of the mayor's credit statements that beg the question, was he wining and dining women on the taxpayer's dime? [...]

After some digging, Team 10 obtained some of the mayor's corporate credit card statements from parts of January, February and May of this year, detailing 6 different transactions at the Westgate Plaza Hotel between January 21 and February 7, then two more on May 10 and May 12 for a grand total of $511.06.

Bob Filner is an abhorrent disgrace, and the idea that he may have used taxpayer money to sequester women in a hotel is actually the least disgusting charge against him. Charges which include, among other things, telling his female employees that they should go commando.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

August 8



Legion of Doom

Via Gawker:

Embassy-Closing Terror Plot Uncovered on Al Qaeda Conference Call

For the first time in history, a group of managers were able to sit down and prepare for a major project on a conference call. It's just that all the managers were al Qaeda managers, and the major project was a terrorist attack.

A bizarre story from The Daily Beast, based on clearly targeted leaks from U.S. officials, holds that the communications intercepted by the U.S. government wasn't just any old email or text—it was a full conference call between nearly two dozen representatives from various al Qaeda branches.

"This was like a meeting of the Legion of Doom," one U.S. intelligence officer told The Daily Beast, referring to the coalition of villains featured in the Saturday morning cartoon Super Friends.

In case you were wondering why al Qaeda has thus far been unable to follow up on the spectacularly successful (from their point of view) September 11 attacks, this conference call may provide a critical clue: Perhaps, like many a Silicon Valley wunderkind before them, al Qaeda's senior management team transformed a once-agile organization into a stodgy, hidebound old clunker of a corporation and have since occupied themselves with meetings, PowerPoints and mission / vision statement revisions. Either that or someone droned the shit out of every new project launch leader.

The Gawker article also contains some interesting speculation on why US officials are releasing this information now, why they're willing to reveal intelligence-gathering methods they want to jail Snowden for disclosing, why they're closing down embassies again, etc. Worth a read.


JP Morgan Chase revealed in a regulatory filing Wednesday that the bank faces civil and criminal investigations over its dealing of shoddy mortgage securities that led to the 2008 financial crisis. It was the first time the bank has acknowledged the probe. The filing revealed that U.S. district attorneys have preliminarily concluded JPMorgan flouted federal laws by selling subprime mortgages from 2005-2007. The criminal investigation is in an earlier phase, and it's not the only legal threat the bank faces. Federal prosecutors in Philadelphia are examining whether JPMorgan duped investors into buying worthless securities. All in all, the bank faces scrutiny from eight federal agencies, a state regulator, and two European nations.


JPMorgan is also one of 18 banks that a federal regulator accused of selling troubled loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — the government-controlled mortgage finance giants — without fully disclosing the potential risks. The regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, recently rejected a settlement offer from JPMorgan, the people briefed on the matter said, raising the prospect of a drawn-out legal battle.

In the latest investigations out of California and Philadelphia, federal prosecutors are examining whether JPMorgan ignored evidence of broad flaws among the loans that were ultimately pooled and sold to investors, the people briefed on the matter said. The California investigation is aimed at the mortgage business that JPMorgan inherited after its purchase of Washington Mutual, the people said. It is unclear what prompted the inquiry in Philadelphia.

Facing the onslaught of unwanted attention, JPMorgan has moved to settle some cases. The bank recently struck a $410 million settlement with the nation's top energy regulator, which had accused the bank of devising "manipulative schemes" to transform "money-losing power plants into powerful profit centers."

On Tuesday, Bank of America found itself in the government's cross hairs when the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission accused the bank of defrauding investors by greatly overstating the quality of mortgages backing roughly $850 million in securities. The bank has contested the accusations.


Former Navy Chaplain: Jesus Wants You to 'Sell Your Clothes and Buy a Gun'


Virginia's Right-Wing 'Crisis Pregnancy Centers' Caught On Tape Lying To Women




Chris Christie has released his first wave of campaign ads for the 2016 presidential elections! Oh no wait, no, these are not campaign ads, they are Jersey Shore tourism ads, can't you tell? They are public service ads to promote tourism! Because everybody wants to go to a beach full of Chris Christies. That's why it is totally okay for Christie to spend $4.7 million from Hurricane Sandy relief money with some PR firm called MWW — which happens to be $2 million MORE than another bid — on shameless self-promotion, or, as the always yelling Christie yells it, this selfless effort to promote tourism. These particular ads also cost more because they had Christie starring in themREAD MORE »


NOAA report released yesterday brought more bad news concerning global climate change.

It should be noted that a number of congressmen are currently trying to cut funding for NOAA and increase funding for severe weather warning systems in their home states instead.

Also — here's Senator Tom Harkin dishing harsh reality.

"I'm not naming any names, but one senator got up from a southern state and said, 'Well, you've got to understand that to my people down here, Obama seems like he's exotic,'" Harkin told the newspaper. "That he's just exotic, he doesn't share our values."

Asked if he could name another American era as polarizing as today, Harkin said "Sure — the Civil War."


Wednesday, August 7, 2013

August 7

Republican Congressman Declares That Most People On Food Stamps Deserve To Starve (AUDIO)


Brian Fung, "The NSA is giving your phone records to the DEA. And the DEA is covering it up."

A day after we learned of a draining turf battle between the NSA and other law enforcement agencies over bulk surveillance data, it now appears that those same agencies are working together to cover up when those data get shared.

The Drug Enforcement Administration has been the recipient of multiple tips from the NSA. DEA officials in a highly secret office called the Special Operations Division are assigned to handle these incoming tips, according to Reuters. Tips from the NSA are added to a DEA database that includes "intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records." This is problematic because it appears to break down the barrier between foreign counterterrorism investigations and ordinary domestic criminal investigations.

Because the SOD's work is classified, DEA cases that began as NSA leads can't be seen to have originated from a NSA source.

So what does the DEA do? It makes up the story of how the agency really came to the case in a process known as "parallel construction." …

Of course, we will be piously reminded, if you haven't done anything wrong, you don't have to worry about it. Or, as St. Reagan's Attorney General once said"… [T]he thing is, you don't have many suspects who are innocent of a crime. That's contradictory. If a person is innocent of a crime, then he is not a suspect."


Barack Obama is the hardest-working President in modern American history yet a legislative body that works only 126 days a year criticizes him for taking a vacation?


Why We Should Stop Obsessing Over How Expensive The World's First Test-Tube Hamburger Is


 If the NSA is so omniscient and omnipresent, then how come they didn't catch Bradley Manning three and a half years ago when he was in that chat room with Wikileaks talking about the Afghanistan and Iraq videos he'd given them?


Doctors Prove George W. Bush Has A Heart; Repair It For Him


Oh, this is what passes for priorities? Detroit can't afford road, bridges, pensions, salaries, health care but it CAN afford a half billion dollar hockey arena?




Sometimes you just need to point and laugh (via Benen):

Senate candidate Liz Cheney improperly received a state resident fishing license based on an application with incorrect information, according to Wyoming Game and Fish Department records.

Cheney, who last month announced she will challenge Sen. Mike Enzi in the 2014 Republican primary, received her resident license just 72 days after closing on her Wilson house in May 2012. State law requires residents live in the state 365 consecutive days before they can receive a resident hunting or fishing license, which are cheaper than out-of-state licenses.

Cheney's application also lists her as a 10-year resident of Wyoming.

The Game and Fish records are incorrect, Cheney told the Star-Tribune.

"The clerk must have made a mistake," she said. "I never claimed to be a 10-year resident."

Blaming the clerk is the cherry on top, because it's obvious to everyone who isn't paid to shill for Liz that she was trying to use that license to prove that she's not a carpetbagger. If you think this is a nothingburger, think again: hunting and fishing are huge in Wyoming, and this will dog her until she either loses to Enzi or quits.

Something tells me Mike Enzi has a friend at Game and Fish, which is conducting an "ongoing investigation" into whether Liz is going to get a fine. Lesson one for Liz: real politics is a hell of a lot different from lying for money on Fox News.


GOP threatens CNN, NBC - GOP wants control over what they broadcast Link

Rinse Prettyboy is threatening not to partner with NBC and CNN on future presidential debates 
unless they halt production of recently announced programs about Hillary.

NBC announced in July that the network would air a four-hour miniseries called "Hillary," 
and CNN Films is producing a documentary about her as well.

In letters addressed to NBC and CNN on Aug. 5, Prettyboy warned that RNC members intend 
to vote on a resolution at their party-wide meeting later this month to shut out the networks from 
partnering with the party on Republican primary debates if they do not cancel the programs.

"Out of a sense of fairness and decency and in the interest of the political process and your company's 
reputation, I call on you to cancel this political ad masquerading as an unbiased production," Prettyboy wrote. 
"If you have not agreed to pull this programming prior to August 14, I will seek a binding vote 
of the RNC stating that the committee will neither partner with you in 2016 primary debates 
nor sanction primary debates which you sponsor."

Correct response: "Blow it out your ass, Prettyboy."


Groundwater from the hills above Fukushima is leaking into the basements of the reactor buildings, mixing with irradiated water in those basements, and then leaking into the Pacific. After the usual Tepco cluster fuck, the government is stepping in to help with this plan:

Tepco and the industry ministry have been working since May on a proposal to freeze the soil to prevent groundwater from leaking into the reactor buildings.

Similar technology is used in preventing groundwater flooding in subway construction, but Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Thursday that the vast scale of Tepco's attempt was "unprecedented in the world." [...]

Experts say, however, that maintaining the ground temperatures for months, if not years, would be costly. The plan is to freeze a 1.4 km (nearly one mile) perimeter around the four damaged reactors by drilling shafts into the ground and pumping coolant through them, creating a wall of frozen earth that will block the flow of groundwater into the plant.

This is what the head of the government task force said Monday:

Tepco's "sense of crisis is weak," Mr Kinjo said. "This is why you can't just leave it up to Tepco alone"

"Right now, we have an emergency," he added.

That's perhaps the most eloquent description of Tepco that I've heard so far. Their culture is clearly one of denial–they were in denial about the need for a higher seawall,  as well as during the post-tsunami meltdown, so it's no surprise that their denial has continued during the damage control and cleanup phase.


Can you say hypocrite?



GOP House after ACORN Again - Trouble is, they no longer exist, morans! Link



What is wrong with these people?


What Really Happened to the Dinosaurs?


A rightwing Christian organization falls for kidnapper and rapist Ariel Castro's lies hook, line, and sinker. Castro blamed all his crimes on porn and that was exactly what the anti-porn Institute on Religion and Public Life wanted to hear. The story reminds me of the Christian conservative leader James Dobson's interview of serial killer Ted Bundy. Bundy too blamed everything on a "porn addiction," rather than take responsibility for his actions, and Dobson ate it all up. The religious right seems to love psychopaths, because the psychopath's self-serving lies and excuse-making are exactly what they want to believe. And that does not say good things about the Christian right.


The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against Bank of America today for fraud concerning $850 million in mortgage-backed securities.


It's the August recess and that means it's Town Hall Season. And this is what happens when a Republican representative, in this case Rep. Robert Pittenger (R-NC), descends upon the village and tells the villagers that he is not going to vote for Senator Mike Lee's Obamacare Hostage Act.

Note: This video was edited by a Tea Party group, not a liberal group, to make it more ominous.

The key exchange:

Pittenger: Do you think Harry Reid is going to pass that in the Senate?

Village Rube: It doesn't matter.

Yeah. It doesn't matter. Fuck actually governing. Yeehaw! We should primary Robert Pittenger the next time he's up for reelection. We don't need more RINOs, right? We need someone who will stand up for "conservative values," as the lady in the video said, by holding the entire federal government hostage.

Those two things — conservative values and hostage taking — are more or less synonymous at this point.


More Republican outreach - via Media Matters

Fox News contributor Erick Erickson called Texas State Senator and choice advocate Wendy Davis "Abortion Barbie" after The Weekly Standard attacked her for not responding to a question that linked legal abortion to the crimes of doctor Kermit Gosnell.

Get it? She's blonde. She's skinny. And I want to reduce her to a doll that is typically sold with accessories such as ovens, vacuums, and princess gowns so I'll compare her to a barbie. Because I'm Erick Erickson. Nailed it!

The Weekly Standard reportedly asked Davis to respond to claims that there is "no difference between some types of legal abortion and the crimes of convicted murderer Kermit Gosnell."

Given that the two are not even remotely similar, why should she respond? I probably wouldn't but, if I did, I would say that access to legal abortion will prevent the next Gosnell. And that response would fall on deaf ears.

Whether it's reducing Wendy Davis to an "Abortion Barbie" caricature or encouraging people to slap Hillary in a video game, it's evident that their inner caveman is still controlling most of their actions. Republicans are terrified of strong, popular women in politics who don't conform to their tropes.


The National Rifle Association thinks it's a trespass against the 2nd Amendment to ban bullets containing lead. Lead bullets are totally unnecessary, of course, but the NRA think the ban would discriminate against the constitutional rights of hunters.

The NRA is also targeting zoos. For some reason.

"Anti-lead ammunition groups will not rest until all lead ammunition, and ultimately hunting, is banned," the gun lobby claimed in a Friday press release.

The NRA singled out a law under consideration in California which would require hunters in the Golden State to use lead-free ammunition. Lead free bullets are widely available from top manufacturers, and have not been shown to function any differently than bullets containing the highly toxic element. [...]

Scientists aren't the NRA's only new targets. Nonprofits like the San Diego Zoo and the California Condor Recovery Team are also on the enemies list. The NRA claims these groups "have considerable influence over many legislators and regulators," which they use to "capture" the regulatory agencies and bureaucrats responsible for lead ammunition restrictions.

Yes, the NRA's cheese continues to fall off its cracker.


Is there any difference between this and the latest unhinged rantings of Glenn Greenwald who believes the worldwide terror alert recently issued by the State Department is a political conspiracy?

via ThinkProgress

Fox News responded to the State Department's order for "nonemergency" government personnel to leave Yemen on Tuesday by suggesting that the administration is deliberately leaking intelligence to bolster its public image and distract from other scandals. [...]

"If the White House is revealing secrets, does that sound familiar? They're trying to prosecute a guy in Moscow who revealed some secrets when he was in Hong Kong," Fox's Judge Andrew Napolitano said on 'Fox & Friends' adding, "if the White House is revealing secrets to make the White House look good, the revelation of which tips off or hands to the enemy, that is not good."

According to Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy, it appears that the Obama administration is "working overtime" to distract from ongoing fake scandals, while Greenwald more or less believes the same thing, casting doubt on the idea that any threat exists today.

I know where this is headed, but it isn't going to work. If this story had come about this time next year, it may have had the affect of depressing midterm voter turnout, but as it stands the boy has already cried wolf a dozen times.