Thursday, November 29, 2012

Angry rich white men

Who think they should be entitled to run the country.

Mitt Romney:

It Gets Worse for Mitt Romney as He is Named the Least Influential Person of 2012
Romney’s lasting legacy isn’t that he was at the helm when the Republican Party finally crashed and burned on a national scale. This honestly wasn’t Romney’s fault. It doesn’t matter who the Republicans might have nominated, they would have lost in 2012. (Having a party platform that alienates women, African-Americans, Latinos, and young voters tends to have that sort of impact on the electoral bottom line.) Mitt Romney’s lasting legacy is that he confirmed to the rest of America what it had long suspected. Those old, rich, conservative white guys who are looking to buy elections view the rest of the country with contempt. When these men say they want their country back, they really mean that they think they are entitled to run the show. Women belong in the kitchen. Young people should stop being lazy and get a job. African Americans are invisible, and Latinos are criminals who should be prosecuted and/or (self) deported. Naming Mitt Romney the least influential person of 2012 isn’t kicking a man when he is down. It is telling the truth about a presidential nominee who had done so little, yet felt entitled to so much.
Top Romney Adviser Brags About Losing Poor, Minority Voters To Obama

John McCain and his attack on Susan Rice:
John McCain sounded awfully chastened yesterday. Gone was the bluster of doing “everything in my power to block” Susan Rice from a position she has yet to be nominated for. He didn’t question her competence. The rage gave way to this Sunday morning walkback: “I think she deserves the ability and the opportunity to explain herself and her position, just as she said. But, she’s not the problem. The problem is the president of the United States.” 
I doubt McCain is done being an angry, bitter man who still hasn’t forgiven Rice for her attack on him during the 2008 presidential campaign. But someone must have told him that trashing an accomplished, relatively young woman of color who wasn’t even remotely responsible for what happened in Benghazi is just not a good look these days. Maybe McCain underestimated how many people had Rice’s back, from the Congressional Black Caucus to the president himself — just as his fellow party members had underestimated the power of the voting bloc they commanded on Nov. 6.
And another variation:
4. Because McCain is being a jackass—and Obama is sick of it. Arguably more than any other national figure, the senior senator from Arizona is driven in every aspect of his public behavior by personal pique. In the wake of the 2000 Republican nomination fight, when he believed Bush and his campaign had defeated him by nefarious means, McCain lunged to the center and became one of the sharpest thorns in the side of the new president from his own party. In the wake of the 2008 election, when he was soundly thumped by a Democratic challenger whom he regarded as a neophyte and a pretender whose experience and valor were no match for his own, McCain immediately shed all traces of mavericky independence and became one of Obama’s fiercest critics from the right. Now into McCain’s crosshairs has come Rice, who routinely stripped the bark off him four years ago as one of Obama’s most quotable surrogates. (“His tendency is to shoot first and ask questions later; it is dangerous, and we can’t afford four more years of this reckless foreign policy” is just one vintage example of the form.) No one who knows McCain believes he has forgotten these brickbats or that they are not a substantial part of what is motivating him now. Nor does anyone close to Obama not suspect that, after four years of McCain’s truculence, he’s had quite enough of it, thanks, and is indeed sorta spoiling for a fight.

Pastafarians unite!

Cats in heaven....

Cat heaven: A town in Japan.

How much does a penny cost?  To carry in your car?  To pick up off the ground?

Fascinating blog I found.

Go back!

I hope this helps a kid feeling oppressed and hopeless:

Oh no.  This wonderful duet has apparently been tied to the horrid book '50 Shades of Crap'... listen to it before it's melded forever to that movie/book/garbage.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Monday meandering about the net...

bed bugs.

Answering the silly question anti-evolutionists ask.

This is too cute.

Paul Krugman warns us about the current 'Republican brain':
What was Mr. Rubio’s complaint about science teaching? That it might undermine children’s faith in what their parents told them to believe. And right there you have the modern G.O.P.’s attitude, not just toward biology, but toward everything: If evidence seems to contradict faith, suppress the evidence. 
The most obvious example other than evolution is man-made climate change. As the evidence for a warming planet becomes ever stronger — and ever scarier — the G.O.P. has buried deeper into denial, into assertions that the whole thing is a hoax concocted by a vast conspiracy of scientists. And this denial has been accompanied by frantic efforts to silence and punish anyone reporting the inconvenient facts. But the same phenomenon is visible in many other fields. The most recent demonstration came in the matter of election polls. Coming into the recent election, state-level polling clearly pointed to an Obama victory — yet more or less the whole Republican Party refused to acknowledge this reality. Instead, pundits and politicians alike fiercely denied the numbers and personally attacked anyone pointing out the obvious; the demonizing of The Times’s Nate Silver, in particular, was remarkable to behold.
Not conservative enough, obviously.

Friday, November 23, 2012

No way...

Is anyone going to get me to go to the mall... nope. Update 11/25: This pic is appropriate for the season.

Monday, November 19, 2012

From nice to nasty.

Mr. Rogers.

Temple Grandin.

Your nose may save your legs.

Barefoot college.

Prepping for disaster.

Catholicism and women.

Israelis, the new Nazis:
"Israel was born out of Jewish Terrorism" Tzipi Livnis Father was a Terrorist" Astonishing claims in the House of Parliament. SIR Gerald Kaufman, the veteran Labour MP, yesterday compared the actions of Israeli troops in Gaza to the Nazis who forced his family to flee Poland. During a Commons debate on the fighting in Gaza, he urged the government to impose an arms embargo on Israel. Sir Gerald, who was brought up as an orthodox Jew and Zionist, said: "My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town a German soldier shot her dead in her bed. "My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza. The present Israeli government ruthlessly and cynically exploits the continuing guilt from gentiles over the slaughter of Jews in the Holocaust as justification for their murder of Palestinians." He said the claim that many of the Palestinian victims were militants "was the reply of the Nazi" and added: "I suppose the Jews fighting for their lives in the Warsaw ghetto could have been dismissed as militants." He accused the Israeli government of seeking "conquest" and added: " They are not simply war criminals, they are fools."

Saturday, November 17, 2012

From sex to bombs...

Interesting take on the latest sex scandal.

Lee Atwater's Southern Strategy.

McCain is still sore he isn't president.

Run away, run away!!

The perils of being a woman online.

Did Anonymous save the election by blocking Rove's hacking minions?

Verdun, France has a Forbidden Forest filled with 12 million unexploded bombs from WWI.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Usual Thursday....

First the parrots...They are plotting to take over the world!

What can happen to women denied abortions.

Scary muslim pictures.

Mass shooting for the last 30 years... brought to you by the NRA, the gun companies, and a cowardly Congress.

High Fructose Corn Syrup... apparently not even related to corn anymore:
While “trans-fat free” and “no MSG” are widely misused in the food world, nothing seems to come close to the ultra popular “natural.” With no definitive guidance from the FDA as to the meaning of the term, food manufactures slap it on products with abandon. Author and blogger Bruce Bradley, a 15-year veteran of the food product marketing world, says, “There is no FDA definition of ‘Natural,’ and in that vacuum, processed food companies have filled the void with their own, self-serving interpretations.” As an example, Bradley cites high fructose corn syrup, which he describes as “anything but natural…the result of an extraordinarily intensive process involving a series of enzymatic and chemical reactions. In fact, as one pro-HFCS group states, ‘the corn undergoes so much processing, and the products of the processes are so removed from corn that there is no detectable corn DNA present in HFCS.’” As the litigation lingers on, it will hopefully have the side effect of informing all those still clueless shoppers out there that what they see advertised about a food may bear little or no relationship to what they actually get – and in that way, can and will “benefit the public” after all.
Belly buttons.

Doggies and video game dragons.

Teaching girls to become engineers.

Monday, November 12, 2012

But... it's too simple and involves math...

Robert Reich on Facebook:
I hope the President starts negotiations over deficit reduction from the strongest possible position. After all, he won the election. 
The consensus (Simpson-Bowles, Congressional Budget Office, Republican leaders, White House) is we need to cut the deficit by $4 trillion over the next ten years. 
Here's how. 
First, raise taxes on the rich -- who are now richer than they've ever been, and taking home a larger share of total income and wealth than in over 80 years. 
Sixty years ago, Americans earning over $1 million in today's dollars paid 55.2 percent of it in income taxes, after taking all deductions and credits. If they were taxed at that rate now, they'd pay at least $80 billion more annually -- which would reduce the budget deficit by about $1 trillion over the next decade. That's a quarter of the $4 trillion in deficit reduction right there. 
A 2% surtax on the wealth of the richest one-half of 1 percent would bring in another $750 billion over the decade. A one-half of 1 percent tax on financial transactions would bring in an additional $250 billion over the decade. 
Add all this up and we get $2 trillion over ten years -- fully half of the deficit-reduction goal. Raise the capital gains rate to match the rate on ordinary income, and cap the mortgage interest deduction and tax-free employer health care at $20,000 a year, and that's another $500 billion over ten years. Bottom line: $2.5 trillion in additional revenue, and that's not including spending cuts. 
Now, for spending cuts: Cut military spending by 10 percent and we save over $500 billion. Eliminate special tax subsidies to oil and gas, price supports to big agriculture, subsidies for ethanol, tax breaks and research subsidies for Big Pharma, and indirect subsidies to the biggest banks on Wall Street, and we save close to another $1 trillion over ten years. 
Bingo: $4 trillion -- without raising taxes on the middle class, without cutting Social Security or Medicare and Medicaid, without cutting education or infrastructure, without reducing programs for the poor. 
Are you with me?

Friday, November 09, 2012

Don't give in to blackmail, Mr. President.

Paul Krugman:
So what should he do? Just say no, and go over the cliff if necessary. 
It’s worth pointing out that the fiscal cliff isn’t really a cliff. It’s not like the debt-ceiling confrontation, where terrible things might well have happened right away if the deadline had been missed. This time, nothing very bad will happen to the economy if agreement isn’t reached until a few weeks or even a few months into 2013. So there’s time to bargain. 
More important, however, is the point that a stalemate would hurt Republican backers, corporate donors in particular, every bit as much as it hurt the rest of the country. As the risk of severe economic damage grew, Republicans would face intense pressure to cut a deal after all. 
Meanwhile, the president is in a far stronger position than in previous confrontations. I don’t place much stock in talk of “mandates,” but Mr. Obama did win re-election with a populist campaign, so he can plausibly claim that Republicans are defying the will of the American people. And he just won his big election and is, therefore, far better placed than before to weather any political blowback from economic troubles — especially when it would be so obvious that these troubles were being deliberately inflicted by the G.O.P. in a last-ditch attempt to defend the privileges of the 1 percent. 
Most of all, standing up to hostage-taking is the right thing to do for the health of America’s political system. 
So stand your ground, Mr. President, and don’t give in to threats. No deal is better than a bad deal.

Thursday, November 08, 2012


Well, THAT was a lot of kerfuffle.  Can we have some peace and quiet for a bit now?

Monday, November 05, 2012

Sandy vs Katrina

Krugman states the obvious:
The point is that after Katrina the government seemed to have no idea what it was doing; this time it did. And that’s no accident: the federal government’s ability to respond effectively to disaster always collapses when antigovernment Republicans hold the White House, and always recovers when Democrats take it back. 
Consider, in particular, the history of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 
Under President George H. W. Bush, FEMA became a dumping ground for unqualified political hacks. Faced with a major test in the form of Hurricane Andrew in 1992, the agency failed completely. 
Then Bill Clinton came in, put FEMA under professional management, and saw the agency’s reputation restored. Given this experience, you might have expected George W. Bush to preserve Mr. Clinton’s gains. But no: he appointed his campaign manager, Joe Allbaugh, to head the agency, and Mr. Allbaugh immediately signaled his intention both to devolve disaster relief to the state and local level and to downgrade the whole effort, declaring, “Expectations of when the federal government should be involved and the degree of involvement may have ballooned beyond what is an appropriate level.” After Mr. Allbaugh left for the private sector, he was replaced with Michael “heckuva job” Brown, and the rest is history. 
Like Mr. Clinton, President Obama restored FEMA’s professionalism, effectiveness, and reputation. But would Mitt Romney destroy the agency again? Yes, he would. As everyone now knows — despite the Romney campaign’s efforts to Etch A Sketch the issue away — during the primary Mr. Romney used language almost identical to Mr. Allbaugh’s, declaring that disaster relief should be turned back to the states and to the private sector. 
The best line on this, I have to admit, comes from Stephen Colbert: “Who better to respond to what’s going on inside its own borders than the state whose infrastructure has just been swept out to sea?” 
Look, Republicans love to quote Ronald Reagan’s old joke that the most dangerous words you can hear are “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” Of course they’ll do their best, whenever they’re in power, to destroy an agency whose job is to say exactly that. And yes, it’s hypocritical that the right-wing news media are now attacking Mr. Obama for, they say, not helping enough people.

One more term....

Sung to the music of Les Miserables.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Algae? I think we could manage that....

Biofuel breakthrough: Quick cook method turns algae into oil
ANN ARBOR—It looks like Mother Nature was wasting her time with a multimillion-year process to produce crude oil. Michigan Engineering researchers can "pressure-cook" algae for as little as a minute and transform an unprecedented 65 percent of the green slime into biocrude. "We're trying to mimic the process in nature that forms crude oil with marine organisms," said Phil Savage, an Arthur F. Thurnau professor and a professor of chemical engineering at the University of Michigan.