February 27th, 2009

(no subject)

Gimmicks We Can Believe In
Obama's budget is still deceptive, just not in ways we're used to.

By John Dickerson

US President elect Barack Obama (R) names Peter Orzag (L) the Director of the Office of Management and Budget. Click image to expand.

All presidential budgets are rife with trap doors, gimmicks, and flim-flammery. This annual budget exercise is like a grand national fish story every president gets to tell: Each administration exaggerates differently, but the basic story is the same.

That said, President Obama's $3.55 trillion budget is different in at least two significant ways. First, it will be held to a higher standard—at the insistence of the administration itself. And second, its gimmicks are designed to make the administration look like it is saving more, not spending less.

Rarely has an administration made such a big deal about its honesty and transparency. Obama said in his speech to Congress on Tuesday, "I am committed to restoring a sense of honesty and accountability to our budget." When Budget Director Peter Orszag announced the budget he said: "The first step in addressing this very deep fiscal hole is honesty. This budget will not play the games that are typically played."

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(no subject)

Sorry, Microsoft's Xbox Has a 'No Lesbians Allowed' Policy
Don't Ask, Don't Tell comes to gaming


You know what Microsoft's Xbox Live does not consider offensive enough to ban? Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, where players steal, harass other characters, beat on prostitutes, and shoot to kill. And Resident Evil 4, where players encounter a dead female corpose pinned against the wall with a pitchfork through her face in the first few minutes of game play. And NARC, where players smoke pot, roll on ectasty, and get high on LSD to make their characters stronger. And 50 Cent: Bulletproof, where players take part in drive-bys and gang warfare to buy new music videos. But you know what Xbox Live does deem too offensive? Identifying yourself as a lesbian in your player profile.


In 2007 we told you about a player who got virtually gay bashed (video) playing Xbox's Halo 3 for having the screenname "xxxGayBoyxxx." Another Xbox player reported being forced to change his account name from something other than "thegayergamer," since, according to a supervisor the player spoke to, the Xbox "community" thought the moniker was too offensive. Even a guy named "Richard Gaywood" had to change his screenname.

And now another player says she was banned from Xbox for acknowledging she was a lesbian — after users complained. She writes Consumerist:

I just recently saw a thing on your site about someones gamer tag being banned because it had the word gay in the tag.

I had a similar incident, only my account was suspended because I had said in my profile that I was a lesbian. I was harassed by several players, 'chased' to different maps/games to get away from their harassment. They followed me into the games and told all the other players to turn me in because they didn't want to see that crap or their kids to see that crap.

As if xbox live is really appropriate for kids anyways! My account was suspended and xbox live did nothing to solve this, but instead said others found it offensive.

Today I received a message from another gamer calling me a fag. I am a lesbian, so they aren't too smart if they cant get their anti-gay slurs right.

Microsoft does nothing to stop this or prevent it, but instead sides with the homophobes. No one will help me get the word out about Microsoft's anti-gay policy. Not even the HRC who says Microsoft has a positive image with them. Not to me it doesn't!

It's worth noting that Microsoft doesn't ban the words "gay" or "lesbian" as a matter of policy; that is, you can type those strings of characters in Xbox games without immediately being banned or censored. Doing so is, I think, a good thing — though a video game community of homophobes probably means the words "gay" and "fag" are used more often as slurs than anything else. And when someone flags a user for being too "gay," Microsoft's wrath follows.

But Microsoft's position to cave to the Xbox "community," rather than defend its paying customers from harassment, is hateful. While it's unrealistic to think all gamers can be protected from being taunted while playing, the company should have some method of protecting those who alert it to harassment. Instead, they blame the victims, and ban them. Despicable.

[Video game descriptions via Gamespot]


[misc] this just in
  • sarken

Godless Catholic university to be made officially godless?

Follow-up to this post by sunoftheskye. (Since neither article mentions it, Boykin was there to give two talks: one on Prop 8, the other on the Obama administration.)

Bishop Martino could take church affiliation from Misericordia

Published: Friday, February 27, 2009
Updated: Friday, February 27, 2009 7:13 AM EST

Bishop Joseph F. Martino could strip Misericordia University and other local colleges of their status as Catholic institutions if he believes they are no longer true to Catholic teachings, according to several Catholic officials.

The bishop has publicly criticized the appearance of gay-rights advocate Keith Boykin, a best-selling author, television commentator and founder of the National Black Justice Coalition, who spoke at two forums at Misericordia this month.

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To paraphrase their old jingle, "The Scranton Times, the Sunday Times, The Tribune -- Get the paper source!"

Related: Former Senator Rick 'Man on Dog' Santorum luffs Bishop Martino, but for other reasons.

The Wingnut Revolution

The Wingnut Revolution
Bob Cesca

Political Author, Blogger, and New Media Producer
Posted February 26, 2009 | 05:48 PM (EST)

After nearly three decades of Reaganomics in which the wealthiest two percent have grown exponentially wealthier while middle class wages have remained stagnant, a growing faction of super rich Americans is seriously pissed off -- and their Wingnut Revolution is upon us.

Sure, the interests and influence of the wealthiest two percent make them more responsible than most for the free market policies that created this current economic crisis. But if there's one thing we've learned about those responsible for this recession, it's that the concept of accountability is about as foreign as their live-in au pairs. Instead, they're trying to pin this on Barney Frank and a legion of "losers" (read that: working class minorities) even though Ben Bernanke himself has debunked this myth.

But accountability (a "day of reckoning" as President Obama called it) is underway in the form of the president's housing proposal, his healthcare plan and, naturally, the recovery act. At the end of the day, ninety-five percent of Americans will benefit from what amounts to the largest tax cut in American history, along with increased access to affordable healthcare and millions of new jobs.

Though, alas, the super rich will have to pay slightly more in taxes.

Yeah, that's a shame.
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Simone--Aretha's Hat

The death of the Rocky Mountain News

Goodbye, Colorado

It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to you today. Our time chronicling the life of Denver and Colorado, the nation and the world, is over. Thousands of men and women have worked at this newspaper since William Byers produced its first edition on the banks of Cherry Creek on April 23, 1859. We speak, we believe, for all of them, when we say that it has been an honor to serve you. To have reached this day, the final edition of the Rocky Mountain News, just 55 days shy of its 150th birthday is painful. We will scatter. And all that will be left are the stories we have told, captured on microfilm or in digital archives, devices unimaginable in those first days. But what was present in the paper then and has remained to this day is a belief in this community and the people who make it what it has become and what it will be. We part in sorrow because we know so much lies ahead that will be worth telling, and we will not be there to do so. We have celebrated life in Colorado, praising its ways, but we have warned, too, against steps we thought were mistaken. We have always been a part of this special place, striving to reflect it accurately and with compassion. We hope Coloradans will remember this newspaper fondly from generation to generation, a reminder of Denver’s history – the ambitions, foibles and virtues of its settlers and those who followed. We are confident that you will build on their dreams and find new ways to tell your story. Farewell – and thank you for so many memorable years together.


More information here: http://www.rockymountainnews.com
Just sad. Utterly sad.
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  • bispo

Tom DeLay Channels Limbaugh: I Want Obama To Fail

Just days before the Inauguration, Rush Limbaugh famously declared, “I hope [Obama] fails.” Since then, some conservatives have been hesitant to embrace this view. Pat Robertson said, “That was a terrible thing to say.” “Anybody who wants him to fail is an idiot,” said Gov. Mark Sanford (R-SC). Responding to Sanford, Limbaugh reiterated his position yesterday, saying, the “hell we don’t” want Obama to fail.

One of those “idiots” adopting Limbaugh’s stance is former House Majority Leader Tom Delay (R-TX). In an interview with ThinkProgress at CPAC today, we asked DeLay whether he agrees with Limbaugh’s statements. DeLay said Limbaugh was “exactly” right to root for Obama’s failure:

TP: Do you agree with Rush Limbaugh that we shouldn’t hope for President Obama to succeed?

DELAY: Well, exactly right. I don’t want this for our nation. That’s for sure.

Watch it:

ThinkProgress also asked DeLay if the conservative movement feels “liberated” now that President Bush is out of office. DeLay responded that conservatives feel “liberated because they’ve got an enemy they can focus on,” referring to “the left.”

It’s not surprising that DeLay is hoping for the President to fail; he has been slandering Obama for months. “I tagged him as a Marxist months ago,” DeLay boasted during the campaign, recalling his earlier assertions Obama had an “old school Marxist, radical liberal failed ideology.”

In a separate interview with ThinkProgress at CPAC today, DeLay said that Obama is a “con artist.” Watch the video here.

  • bispo

(no subject)

This morning at CPAC, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell paid homage to hate radio host Rush Limbaugh, saying that he epitomized how fun Republicans are:

McCONNELL: Compare that [CPAC] to the left’s annual attempt to imitate, the so-called Take Back America conference, which last year drew about a third as many people as CPAC. What this proves, of course, is that conservatives are more fun and interesting than liberals.

I mean, let’s be honest. Who wants to hang out with guys like Paul Krugman and Robert Reich, when you can be with Rush Limbaugh!

McConnell then brought up progressives’ non-existent push for the so-called Fairness Doctrine, saying that it would be his “honor” to make sure that it doesn’t go through Congress. He further said that the measure should be called the “We-Can’t-Compete-With-Conservative-Talk-Radio Act of 2009.” Watch it:

Yesterday, the Senate also voted “to keep federal regulators from reinstituting the Fairness Doctrine,” even though there is no chance that the government will do so. The measure was added to a bill giving D.C. residents congressional representation.

biggie aretha
  • bispo

D.C. Vote Debate Heating Up

Earlier in the week we got the heads up via Twitter that the battle over D.C. voting rights (they’ve had no representation in Congress for 200 years!) had made it’s way to Capitol Hill and that there was some action. According to NPR’s Political Junkie Ken Rudin (who I’ve spent some time with before - watch this video), despite encouraging signs, voting rights for D.C. are not yet a done deal.

Tuesday’s vote that cleared the way for the Senate to begin deliberating on the bill — the District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act — is only a first step. Or, maybe, a millionth step. Whatever, it’s not the final step. (The Senate passed the measure today, 61-37. More on that below.)

D.C. Voting Rights Buttons

For all of the details on what needs to happen to make D.C. voting rights a reality, check out Ken Rudin’s Political Junkie and keep checking back with us.

  • bispo

Exclusive: Joe the Plumber suggests some members of Congress should be shot.

On Wednesday, Joe “the Plumber” Wurzelbacher said that if he were in Congress, he would “probably be in jail” because he’d be charged with “slapping some member.” He added, “And that’s not [bull] either.” ThinkProgress asked Joe at CPAC yesterday which members he would most like to slap. “Pretty much anybody that’s stood there and said anything bad about our troops, pretty much anybody who sat there and talked treasonous talk about America,” Joe said. He then implied that some members of Congress should be shot:

Back in the day, really, when people would talk about our military in a poor way, somebody would shoot ‘em. And there’d be nothing said about that, because they knew it was wrong. You don’t talk about our troops. You support our troops. Especially when our congressmen and senators sit there and say bad things in an ongoing conflict.

Watch it:

Of course, politicians aren’t the only ones Joe thinks should be banned from speaking about war. Last month, he said that journalists shouldn’t “be anywhere allowed war.” “I think media should be abolished from, uh, you know, reporting,” he said.

Update: ThinkProgress also asked Joe about his recent trip to Israel. Wurzelbacher repeated his claim that Obama’s victory means “death to Israel.” He also seemed to say that there is no such thing as a Palestinian. Watch the video here.
  • bispo

California Unemployment Rate Jumps To 10.1 Percent

California's unemployment rate jumped to 10.1 percent in January, the state's first double-digit jobless reading in a quarter-century.

The jobless rate announced Friday by the state Employment Development Department represents an increase from the revised figure of 8.7 percent in December.

A year ago, California's unemployment rate was 6.1 percent. Since then, steep declines in the construction, finance and retail industries have put thousands out of work.

The number of people without jobs in California soared to more than 1.8 million, up 754,000 over January 2008.

Stephen Levy, senior economist for the Palo Alto-based Center for Continuing Study of the California Economy, said the last time California unemployment topped 10 percent was June 1983.
Obama has a crush on me


Russian bomber neared Canada before Obama visit

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canadian fighters planes scrambled to intercept an approaching Russian bomber less than 24 hours before U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Ottawa last week, Canadian Defense Minister Peter MacKay said on Friday.

The long-range Bear bomber did not enter Canada's Arctic airspace but the two CF-18 fighters had to order the plane to "back off", MacKay told a news conference.

He also told reporters that Russia had not warned Canada that the flight was coming, a statement that a Russian government source in Moscow dismissed as farcical.

The Russian government source said Canada had been informed about the flight before it took off.

"So the statements from Canada's defense ministry are perplexing to say the least and cannot be called anything other than a farce," Interfax news agency quoted the source as saying.

Canada quickly denied receiving any advance notice.


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panda bear

(no subject)

HIV-Infected Blood Sent To Obama

Sky News reports that a man has been arrested for allegedly sending President Obama and his staff envelopes containing HIV-infected blood.

Saad Hussein, an Ethiopian refugee in his late 20s, sent a number of items to the offices of the Illinois government in the weeks before the US President's inauguration, according to court documents.

One envelope contained a letter with reddish stains and an admission ticket for Mr Obama's election night celebration in Grant Park, Chicago.

Court documents claim Hussein told FBI agents he is "very sick with HIV" and cut his fingers with a razor so he could bleed on the letter.

More details from the Cleveland Leader:

A spokesman for the U.S. Postal Inspection Service said that this is only the second time that HIV-infected blood has been sent with malicious intent through the U.S. mail system. [...]

After the envelope was opened, Hazmat teams were called in. The offices of the Illinois Department on Aging, as well as the Dept. of Revenue were locked down for about two hours. 300 staff members were thus stuck in their offices.

Using his brother as an interpreter, Hussein told the FBI that he was an "admirer" of Obama. He also said that he was "seeking help from the government", and that he was hoping to obtain tickets to the inauguration in Washington D.C.

panda bear

(no subject)

Jewish Leaders Blast Clinton Over Israel Criticism

In a swift about face from her views as New York's senator, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is now hammering Israel over its treatment of Palestinians in Gaza.

As First Lady, Clinton raised eyebrows when she kissed Suha Arafat.

Since she was then seeking a Senate seat the resulting brouhaha caused her to "re-think" her positions.

"I'm a very strong supporter of Israel," Clinton said back in February 2000.

On Thursday, as Secretary of State she had yet another about face in the form of angry messages demanding Israel speed up aid to Gaza. Jewish leaders are furious.

"I am very surprised, frankly, at this statement from the United States government and from the secretary of state," said Mortimer Zuckerman, publisher of the New York Daily News and member of the NYC Jewish Community Relations Council.

"I liked her a lot more as a senator from New York," Assemblyman Dov Hikind, D-Brooklyn, said. "Now, I wonder as I used to wonder who the real Hillary Clinton is."

Clinton's decision to hammer Israel comes as the Clintons and President Barack Obama are planning to give the Palestinians $900 million toward the rebuilding of Gaza in the wake of the Israeli offensive that was sparked by Hamas rocket fire.

"We are working across the government to see what our approach will be," Clinton said.

"I don't believe that we should be in a position at this point to do anything to strengthen Hamas," Zuckerman said. "We surely know what Hamas stands for as I say they are the forward battalions of Iran."

For some, Clinton's change of position is upsetting.

"I feel it's unfortunate that they don't continue the policy of the Bush administration, which was much more pro-Israel," said Akiva Homnick of Jerusalem.

"I happen to have a lot of family who live in Israel and I feel, personally, when you are dealing with people who are very strong against you, you have to stand up to them," said Tami Davudoff of Kew Gardens.

"Hillary had Mrs. Arafat here and she invited Mrs. Arafat for lunch when she was the first lady," added Babak Chafe of Great Neck. "She is pro-Palestinian 100 percent, really. Of course, we always knew it."

"The easy way to make a peace agreement is to pressure Israel because you can't pressure the Arabs," said Solomon Loewi of Monsey, N.Y.

All this could lead to a chilly reception when Mrs. Clinton arrives in the Middle East next week.

The new U.S. envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, arrived in Israel on Thursday with a mission to inject new life into peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

' jules
  • schmiss


Jindal Admits Katrina Story Was False

Looks like the game is up.

Remember that story Bobby Jindal told in his big speech Tuesday night -- about how during Katrina, he stood shoulder-to-shoulder with a local sheriff who was battling government red tape to try to rescue stranded victims?

Turns out it wasn't actually, you know, true.

In the last few days, first Daily Kos, and then TPMmuckraker, raised serious questions about the story, based in part on the fact that no news reports we could find place Jindal in the affected area at the specific time at issue.

Jindal had described being in the office of Sheriff Harry Lee "during Katrina," and hearing him yelling into the phone at a government bureaucrat who was refusing to let him send volunteer boats out to rescue stranded storm victims, because they didn't have the necessary permits. Jindal said he told Lee, "that's ridiculous," prompting Lee to tell the bureaucrat that the rescue effort would go ahead and he or she could arrest both Lee and Jindal.

But now, a Jindal spokeswoman has admitted to Politico that in reality, Jindal overheard Lee talking about the episode to someone else by phone "days later." The spokeswoman said she thought Lee, who died in 2007, was being interviewed about the incident at the time.

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(no subject)

Senator calls Obama 'world’s best salesman of socialism'

Another prominent Republican told the Conservative Political Action Conference on Friday that the president’s spending plans are pushing the country to the brink of socialism.

Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina, the only member of the senate to earn a perfect rating from the American Conservative Union, called President Obama “the world’s best salesman of socialism” on Friday in describing his prime time speech earlier this week.

DeMint, a fierce opponent of government expansion, told the CPAC crowd that conservatives might have to “take to the streets to stop America’s slide into socialism.”

His remarks comes a day after Mike Huckabee told the conference of conservative activists that “the Union of American Socialist Republics is being born” with the president’s stimulus package.

“Lenin and Stalin would love this stuff,” Huckabee said of the government bailing out financial institutions.

(stock) crystal

Oh he's back: An Update on Mr. Drunken Negro Face Cookie Guy.

"Drunken Negro Face" Cookie Baker Visited By Secret Service, Black Panthers

It's been over a month since Greenwich Village baker Ted Kefalinos sparked outrage over his so-called "Drunken Negro Face" cookies, and the controversy will still not go away, despite his fumbling attempts to apologize. The New Black Panthers have been protesting on Saturdays outside his bakery, and the Secret Service paid him a visit because of his alleged remarks that "Obama will get what he deserves, just like Lincoln." In a Villager article that can only be described as pure gold, Kefalinos says, "I get both sides. I get people who praise me and call me genius. I even got one guy who wanted to send 100 drunk Negroes to beat me into submission — and he was going to video it...There’s one guy who calls himself Denzel Washington. He wanted me to personally apologize for the cookie. I hung up on him. "

Naturally, My Fox NY's Arnold Diaz, who broke the story with in one of his classic "Shame" segments, has been following up, and reports that State Senator Thomas Duane pressured Kefalinos to take a racial sensitivity training session. But Duane says, "He really needs to undergo much more sensitivity training because I'm not sure that he's completely got the message yet. If he doesn't... the marketplace will put him out of business."

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  • bispo

Fox News’ Shep Smith Forgets He's on Faux News

Today, a federal grand jury formally charged Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri — the only “enemy combatant” held inside the United States — “with two counts of providing material support to al Qaeda.” This afternoon, Fox News host Shepard Smith briefly veered off the Fox reservation and expressed outrage that al-Marri has been imprisoned for five years without any charges being filed against him:

SMITH: He has been held in a military prison for more than five years — not Chris Wallace — this next person. And he wasn’t ever charged. Think about that. I mean just think about it fundamentally. You are held for five years in prison, and you’re never charged! Oh well it was an al-Qaeda suspect, suspected al-Qaeda operative. Who cares who it is?! You don’t get to — this is America; you do not get the hold people for five years without — actually, you do. But he’s getting its day in court now.

Watch it:

Indeed, bringing charges against al-Marri in a civilian court represents “an abrupt change in policy from the Bush administration” which “had argued that he could be held indefinitely without being charged.” Attorney General Eric Holder said today that the indictment “shows our resolve to protect the American people and prosecute alleged terrorists to the full extent of the law” and that the Obama administration “will hold accountable anyone who attempts to do harm to Americans, and we will do so in a manner consistent with our values.”

  • war4l

Genital Mutilation: Women Fight Africa's Taboo

The female journalist was snatched by members of a secret society, forcibly stripped and made to parade naked through the streets. It might sound like an atrocity from the time when Sierra Leone was ripped apart by a bloody civil war, but in fact the public humiliation was exacted in the diamond-rich eastern town of Kenema just this month. The woman's alleged crime was reporting on female genital mutilation.

While the attack was condemned by media watchdogs as "disgraceful behaviour worthy of a bygone age", one woman who was not surprised was Rugiatu Turay. When she was 12 Ms Turay was stolen away by family members and underwent what some politely refer to as "circumcision". She calls it "torture". For the past six years, she has been waging a war against the practice, which many in Sierra Leone, including senior politicians, see as an initiation rite.
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  • bispo

U.S. troops praise Iraq withdrawal: ‘I don’t think we really had a whole lot of direction.’

Today, President Obama announced the withdrawal of most U.S. troops from Iraq by August 2010 in Camp Lejuene, NC. After Obama’s speech, the AP interviewed several soldiers at the military base. While conservatives have long insisted that service members do not want to withdraw from Iraq, the troops interviewed heaped praise on Obama’s military agenda and the withdrawal timetable:

PETTY OFFICER RYAN JUNKIN: All around pretty good feeling. It’s good that he gave some direction. … Because I don’t think we really had a whole lot of direction with what’s going on. It’s kind of defined now.

SGT. ALDWIN DEL ROSARIO: My biggest take away is that he had dates, and he plans to meet those goals and those dates.

LANCE COPL. CODELL CAMPBELL: Iraq got all our full attention for the past years. A lot of fellow Marines have died trying to make the country better. … Afghanistan is where the real fight is.

Watch it:

“I thought the war would go on and on,” said Pvt. John R. Brown, who watched the President’s speech on Armed Forces Network in Iraq. “I thought it would never end.”

☆ the skies change
  • stamina

Brian Williams and Jon Stewart talk hard news.

Brian Williams returns to 'The Daily Show' to discuss current events: banks, pin numbers and Twitter.

Source @ TheDailyShow.com
Full Episode (27 February 2009)

Wow. Sorry about the previous post, folks! Especially those whose friend's page plundered along with my complete fail with HTML. That said, have Brian Williams on TDS again. ♥

K-Box cartoon

This can only end in tears. Or possibly RickRolling.

Ask Bobby Jindal :: 10 Questions - Time.com

I'll be very interested to see which questions actually manage to make it through the filter, given that pretty much every single question I saw at the start of the list was, at least in part, also a thinly-veiled insult.

And I say that as someone who HATES Bobby Jindal.

Also, and maybe I should start a new thread of my own for this, but if YouTube had been around in 1988, does anyone agree with me that Bill Clinton would not have become president in 1992? I voted for Clinton twice, but his 1988 DNC speech was one of the most disastrous train-wrecks of a speech I've ever witnessed in my lifetime. Fortunately for him, though, nobody on the level of mere citizens had the ability to keep embarrassing clips like that alive, much less disseminate them worldwide at will, the way that any kid with a computer and an Internet connection can do now.

If Jindal makes a run at the GOP nomination in 2012, look for clips of his Kenneth the Page speech to go viral all over again, and don't be surprised if it's one of his fellow Republicans who starts that trend.
Bree Gun

Kelly Clarkson confused about feminism?


In a recent interview, singer Kelly Clarkson went off on why she's not a feminist.

Would you call yourself a feminist?

No, not at all. I mean, that was the first time in my life -- which maybe I'm naïve and I've not been put in any situations like that -- but that's the first time in my life I've ever even heard someone use that mentality. I'm like, "Hey, knock-knock, 2008." Most of the men in my life have been very highly supportive. I've never had to even think like a feminist because no one around me even thinks one [sex] is higher than the other.

Really? Well it must be nice to work in an industry that's completely sexism-free! But wait...another question from the same interview.

Do you consider the record industry to be a boys' club?

I just know for a fact ... why I said that was because I was actually on a phone call with two people who did not know I was on the phone, and I literally heard somebody I used to work with say, "Well, you know what, he can get away with it because it's a guy. She's a girl, so let's just face it, it's different." And I was like, "Is this the 1950s?" I hung up and didn't listen to the rest.

Does. Not. Compute.

EDIT: Oh lord.  Apparently she also said this.

"People are like, 'Are you secretly a lesbian? Because I'd really love it.'" Alas: "I could never be a lesbian. I would never want to date [someone like] myself, ever. I'm a crazy person. I need some kind of stable, quiet man."


Right.  Because we all know all women are totes emotional wrecks and men are always cool, calm, and collected.



Prepare to die

Dad decides to do this thing called "Parenting"

Evan Spencer wanted to play “Call of Duty: World at War.” So he asked his dad.

Hugh Spencer wasn’t initially thrilled about the idea of his son playing the World War II-based game. “I’ve never really enjoyed first-person shooter games,” he confesses. “They’re just not my favorite aesthetic.”

But the elder Spencer agreed to his son’s request, on one condition: Evan would have to read all four treaties from the Geneva Conventions first. And then, agree to play by those rules.

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' jules
  • schmiss

And that's how I died of popcorn overdose.

Report: Bunning Threatens Revenge Against GOP: To Resign And Hand Seat To Dems

The Louisville Courier-Journal reports that Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY) is now making a very interesting threat to his national party: If you keep trying to force me into retirement, I'll just resign -- and hand the seat to the Democrats.

Bunning reportedly said at a campaign fundraiser in Washington that the rumors being spread about his possible retirement, or of a potential Republican primary challenger, have been hindering his fundraising efforts. "I would get the last laugh," Bunning said, according to three sources speaking to the paper. "Don't forget Kentucky has a Democrat governor."

Bunning has previously threatened to sue the NRSC if he gets a primary challenger. If he were to take this revenge on them through this particular method, that would immediately bring the Democrats to 59 seats. Add in an Al Franken victory in the Minnesota election dispute, and you now have 60 seats -- the filibuster-proof majority.

One of the Courier-Journal's sources was clearly worried: "It's not because he's old and senile -- he's always been like that. He'll tell you what he thinks."


Either way, Democrats win...

bleeding rainbow

"This is major, people."

DEA to end medical marijuana raids

Holder confirms states to have final say on use of drug for pain control
By Alex Johnson. Reporter, msnbc.com
updated 5:42 p.m. ET, Fri., Feb. 27, 2009

Supporters of programs to provide legal marijuana to patients with painful medical conditions are celebrating Attorney General Eric Holder’s statement this week that the Drug Enforcement Administration would end its raids on state-approved marijuana dispensaries.

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o hai, it's ontd_p's Republican boyfriend. <3

Huntsman: I'll use stimulus cash to bring Hollywood to Utah
Federal money » He also plans to invest in USTAR and help Utahns buy homes.

By Robert Gehrke

The Salt Lake Tribune
Posted: 02/26/2009 07:43:01 PM MST

Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. plans to use $15 million of the federal stimulus money to sweeten the state's incentive to lure moviemakers to the state, he said Thursday.

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If only more of these Republican idiots would actually do what's in the best interest of their constituents instead of playing politics with people's livelihoods.

Dobson steps down ... remains a "rockstar."


James Dobson is expected to stay in his public role as an advocate for socially conservative issues.

During a meeting with employees, Dobson, 72, said the move means he will no longer be involved with the administrative side of the organization, according to spokesman Gary Schneeberger.

But Dobson's public role isn't expected to change. He'll still appear on his daily radio broadcast and as an advocate for socially conservative issues, Schneeberger said.

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"~one of the most exciting days of my life~," - he jizzed in his pants.

wooosh faraday

Obama administration may rescind 'conscience rule'

Officials say the move seeks to clarify rules for health care workers

WASHINGTON — Taking another step into the abortion debate, the Obama administration Friday will move to rescind a controversial rule that allows health-care workers to deny abortion counseling or other family-planning services if doing so would violate their moral beliefs, according to administration officials.

The rollback of the "conscience rule" comes just two months after the Bush administration announced it last year in one of its final policy initiatives.

The new administration's action seems certain to stoke ideological battles between supporters and opponents of abortion rights over the responsibilities of doctors, nurses and other medical workers to their patients.

Seven states, including California, Illinois and Connecticut, as well as two family planning groups, have filed suits challenging the Bush rule, arguing it sacrifices the health of patients to religious beliefs of medical providers

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology has reported cases such as that of a Virginia mother of two who became pregnant because she was denied emergency contraception. In Texas, the group said, a rape victim had her prescription for emergency contraception rejected by a pharmacist

Officials stressed Thursday that the administration is looking for input from people across the ideological spectrum before it finalizes the rollback after the standard 30-day comment period.

"We believe that this is a complex issue that requires a thoughtful process where all voices can be heard," said one official, who was not authorized to speak on the record.

Officials said the administration will consider drafting a new rule to clarify what health-care workers can reasonably refuse for patients.

For more than 30 years, federal law has allowed doctors and nurses to decline to provide abortion services as a matter of conscience, a protection that is not subject to rulemaking.

In promulgating the new rule last year, Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said it was necessary to address discrimination in the medical field.

He criticized "an environment in the health-care field that is intolerant of individual conscience, certain religious beliefs, ethnic and cultural traditions and moral convictions."

Officials said the Obama administration's goal is to make the rule cleare

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  • bispo

Colbert to Chaffetz: "I"ve been had!"

We swear one day we’ll stop writing about him. Swear.

But....Rep. Jason Chaffetz (sigh) somehow wrangled Stephen Colbert into participating in his newly founded "Cot Side Chats."

Colbert, on the stimulus: "I'm so proud of you Republicans voting against the stimulus package by a lot.
Did you ever think you see an America were you would have an opportunity to thwart the policy of a black President? I mean it’s not everyday you get wake up and vote no on a trillion dollars... And now you guys had a great package, which I like, which was 100 percent tax cuts, with no indication with what it would cost. That was [BLEEP]. That took some rocky mountain [BLEEP], my friend."

Then he teases Chaffetz, "Wait a second, I’m the first guest! You sold this to me with the idea that you do something called the Cot Side Chat, not 'Lets inaugurate something called the Cot Side Chat.'
I've been had!"
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wooosh faraday

Jonathan Haidt: Reasons to avoid a libertarian babysitter

Ever considered sticking a pin into a child’s hand? How about kicking a dog in the head, hard? What about undergoing plastic surgery to add a two inch tail to the end of your spine?

Surprising as it may seem, your answers to these questions may throw some light on your political loyalties and affiliations. Recent research from the US has produced surprising data about differing attitudes towards social taboos across the political spectrum. The authors include Jonathan Haidt, whose thoughts on the moral and political choices facing Barack Obama are featured in this month’s edition of Prospect in an essay that is free to read online.

According to the study (pdf), published this Spring in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, conservatives are likely to feel more strongly about social taboos revolving around purity, authority and ingroup loyalty, while liberals feel a stronger sense of obligation around issues of harm to animals and other people. Libertarians, those rootless individualists, scored lower in every moral category.

The researchers selected over 1,500 politically committed volunteers, and subjected them to a range of questions exploring their attitudes to different taboos and trangressions. Asked about impaling a child’s hand, 78 per cent of the conservatives responded that they would refuse to do this “for any amount of money,” compared with 70 per cent of liberals and just 59 per cent of libertarians.

In fact, more of the liberal respondents felt strongly about kicking a dog than about harming a child (75 per cent versus 70 per cent refusal for any amount of money), while fifty per cent of the libertarians would agree to surgery giving them a prosthetic tail if they were paid enough to do so.

Some of the questions seem to be inspired by traumas specific to the researchers. One question testing “Purity” asks whether respondents would be willing to “attend a performance art piece in which all participants (including you) have to act like animals for 30 minutes, including crawling around naked and urinating on stage.”

Are these results culturally specific to the US? Or do they reveal a more universal set of moral principles underlying political choice?

AUTHOR CLARIFICATION 24/02/09: I can see from the comments that some people have found this post confusing. The PDF we linked to does not contain the full survey data from Haidt, Graham and Nosek’s research, just the conclusions they’ve drawn from it. But here at Prospect, we’ve seen the full survey data (Johathan Haidt sent it us), and I can confirm that they are as reported in the post, however bizarre that may seem. Apologies for any confusion.

I consider myself a realistic libertarian and this screams spurious relationship like no other. I'm posting because the tail bit made me laugh like a bitch
  • bispo


Suck on this, libs.

C-list wingnut yakker Bob Lonsberry has unleashed an avant-garde gamechanger on the struggling Obama administration:
a word came to me. A newly coined word. Four letters. Pronounced “foo-bow.” Like in “food” and “bow and arrow” – “foo-bow.”
Then the phones lit up. Dozens and dozens of people called. They wanted a bumper sticker just like mine.
On the next commercial break, I checked my e-mail and there was a note from a man at a T-shirt company. He said he’d like to try to make some T-shirts with my new word on them. Several other people wrote offering to make bumper stickers. One gentleman said he would embroider a hat with FUBO on it.
And if I make any money off it, I’m going to buy a gun before the ruling regime outlaws them.

It’s not clear if this stands for Fuck You, Barack Obama or Fucked Up By Obama or For Us, By Obama. Frankly, I think its ambiguity is part of its genius.

good news everyone!
  • 7950

Palin backs parental consent abortion bill

Gov. Sarah Palin on Thursday threw her support behind a controversial bill that would generally require parental consent before girls under age 17 could get an abortion.

She called a press conference Thursday and surrounded by a dozen lawmakers including state Rep. John Coghill, R-North Pole, and Sen. Donny Olson, D-Nome, said:

"Wherever you fall on the abortion issue, right or left, this legislation is about family, and it's about parents' rights and protecting our children, and it's supported by legislators on both sides of the aisle."

She said she's throwing her support behind Coghill's House Bill 35, which backers are calling "parents' rights" legislation.

The measure may have trouble in the state Senate, where Senate President Gary Stevens said months ago that "far left and far right issues" would be off the table for his coalition of Democrats and Republicans.

Sen. Hollis French, D-Anchorage and chairman of the Judiciary Committee, said he would give the bill a hearing. He hasn't yet analyzed it. Last year a similar bill died in his committee.


this shit drives me fucking NUTS. if it's about a parent's right, why doesn't a pregnant minor have the right over the fetus WHICH SHE IS THE PARENT OF? and if your parents can force you to choose birth, can they also force you to choose an abortion? PARENTAL RIGHTS Y'ALL.
Smirk, Grin

Talk about a golden parachute...

Hit-And-Run Plea Lands CEO Just 15 Days In Jail

Bizarre Agreement: Because Both Suspect And Victim Were Drunk, Driver Gets Relative Slap On The Wrist

Victim's Family Outraged Over 'Rich Man's Sentence'

Deal Finally Formalized After Prosection Agreed To Plea In January

A woman out celebrating her birthday was run down walking home and the driver admits he was drunk. Her family says the wealthy businessman behind the wheel managed to broker the deal of his life at sentencing, and prosecutors let it happen.

For the family of Florence Cioffi, the "plea deal" for hit-and-run driver George Anderson is a slap on the wrist.

"It was a bargain that was done for a rich man's sentence," said Lilly Alias, the victim's sister.

Fifteen days in jail, 200 hours of community service and a $500 fine is the sentence technology firm CEO Anderson received Friday for pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges of driving while intoxicated and leaving the scene of an accident.

Anderson, who was driving this $100,000 Mercedes G-series SUV, struck and killed Cioffi on Water Street on the night of Jan. 24, 2008, while under the influence.

Cioffi was also drinking and walked out into the roadway some 40 feet away from the crosswalk, but the prosecution told the family and the court it couldn't prove felony charges against Anderson and went ahead and signed off on Friday's plea deal.

"A rich man got away with murder, and the district attorney is complicit in it," attorney Jerry Misk said.

After reading a victim impact statement in open court, Cioffi's family heard from an emotional Anderson, who offered a written statement, telling the court: "I live every moment with the horror of this event. I know that my contrition is of no use to a family who has lost someone."

The family is devastated because they couldn't convince Judge Burke to rescind the plea deal, but this story isn't over. They've already filed a civil suit against Anderson.

The Manhattan District Attorney's Office didn't have a comment Friday on the decision to accept the plea deal.