December 31st, 2009

franklin sherman

Gerald Celente's Predictions for 2010

Please Ignore the Fox News douche. Listen to Mr Celente. He is the most accurate trends predictor in the world.

More on his credibility:
About Gerald Celente:

"Celente's accurate forecasts include the 1987 stock market crash, the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the 1997 Asian currency crash" and "the 2007 subprime mortgage scandal." His forecasts since 1993 have included predictions about terrorism, economic collapses and war. More recent forecasts involve fascism in the United States, food riots and tax revolts. Celente has long predicted global anti-Americanism, a failing economy and immigration woes in the U.S. In December 2007 Celente wrote, "Failing banks, busted brokerages, toppled corporate giants, bankrupt cities, states in default, foreign creditors cashing out of US securities ... whatever the spark, the stage is set for panic in the streets" and "Just as the Twin Towers collapsed from the top down, so too will the U.S. economy ... when the giant firms fall, they’ll crush the man on the street." He has also predicted tax revolts. In November 2008 Celente appeared on Fox Business Network and predicted economic depression, tax rebellions and food riots in the United States by 2012. Celente also predicted an "economic 9/11" and a "panic of 2008."

South African poet/activist Dennis Brutus dies.

Last night, on NPR, Terry Gross reported the death of South African poet/activist Dennis Brutus.  Gross played her interview with Brutus from 1986.  He talked about his poetry and his experience as a political prisoner on Robben Island.

He also talked about the time he was shot while trying to escape custody :

"The ambulance that came for me, for instance, this was so macabre that men got out in uniform and they took out a stretcher and they looked at me and they put their stretcher back and they got back in the ambulance and they drove off. And I said to Helberg who was beside me, why are they leaving? I was very alarmed. And he said, well, Brutus, you wouldn't want them to lose their job, would you? This is an ambulance for whites, and so you'll have to wait for the black ambulance to come along."


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Hillary Clinton Voted "Most Admired".

For the 14th time, Americans have voted Hillary Clinton the most admired woman. But guess who's number two?

You betcha - it's Miss Going Rogue herself, Sarah Palin. While Clinton received 16% of the 1,025 votes, Palin was disturbingly close behind with 15%. And Palin has risen in the ranks since 2008, when she also came in behind Hillary with 11%. Also in the running for 2009 were Oprah Winfrey, who came in third, with 8%, and First Lady Michelle Obama, who rang in at number four, with 7%. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Queen Elizabeth II tied with 2%. Other notable mentions include Maya Angelou, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Elin Nordegren Woods, none of whom received more than 1%.

Andrew Malcolm for the L.A. Times points out the somewhat obvious:

A Democrat and a Republican. A former senator and a former governor. Two polarizing politicians, both moms, both bestselling authors, both who lost their bids for one of the nation's top elected offices last year.

Are American voters dropping a hint here?

Maybe, and the divide is certainly telling. But Malcolm also betrays the fact that these two women have been pitted against each other in the media, in a sort of Jennifer Anniston-Angelina Jolie way, except instead of fighting over Brad, they're locked in a popularity contest. Clinton's book sales have been used as a benchmark for Going Rogue, they're mentioned together in the title of Anne E. Kornblut's new book on women in politics, and they are frequently spoofed together on SNL (and for more evidence, check out this oldie, io9's breakdown of Clinton and Palin as Star Wars and Star Trek). While, yes, there are many obvious reasons for comparing the two women, it is interesting that when asked who they admire most more than 30% of Americans - for two years in a row - have come up with one of these two.

And over on the men's side, we have Barack Obama at no. 1 with 30% followed by his predecessor George W. Bush with 4%. And all the way down at the bottom of the list, in a tie for 10th place, are Bill Clinton and Tiger Woods. We'll let you speculate on what this means.


EDIT: Oh, and if you check the poll itself, Glenn Beck was more respected than the Pope. Have fun.

Officer accuses NYPD of racial profiling

The New York Police Department has been accused of racial profiling by one of its own.

NYPD Sgt. Reginald McReynolds, who is African-American, said he was a victim of racial profiling when he was stopped by two fellow police officers while in his girlfriend's apartment building in the Bronx on October 26.

According to the official police report, the officers were responding to a domestic abuse call in the same building and mistook McReynolds for the suspect, handcuffing him after he refused to identify himself.

Eric Sanders, McReynolds' attorney, told a different story.

As a former NYPD officer himself, Sanders claims McReynolds immediately identified himself despite what he said was a lack of grounds for stopping him.

"You have to have a legal basis to stop someone in the first place," Sanders said. "They can't do that in a private building unless they establish that there are some grounds for suspicion."

The police report cites the Clean Halls program, which allows officers to stop suspicious occupants of private buildings, interrogate them and place them under arrest for criminal trespass, as legal basis for interrogating McReynolds,

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Via CNN.

Colorado State Employee Soon to Find a New Job as Shoe Shiner.

Obama Palin Shoe Shining Email Could Get Colorado State Worker In Trouble

DENVER (AP) -- A Colorado state employee could be disciplined for sending an e-mail showing President Barack Obama shining the shoes of former Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

The 73-year-old Colorado Department of Transportation worker forwarded the e-mail to at least four co-workers and others on Dec. 22 using her state e-mail account. One of the recipients outside the agency complained.

The original sender of the e-mail, who isn't a state employee, wrote "It appears he (Obama) has found his niche."

CDOT spokeswoman Mindy Crane says the worker could face discipline ranging from a written reprimand to suspension. Employment rules require that she meet with personnel officials first and have a chance to respond in writing. That meeting is scheduled for next week.

Horde of Hungry College Students Invades Kitchen Pantry. Sales of Ramen Noodles Skyrockets.

College Food Banks See An Increase In Hungry Students (VIDEO)

For many students, the myth of the easy college life has always been fantasy. But the dual forces of a crippling recession and rising tuition costs are choking off the ability of many parents to help pay for their kids' education.

Which may be why, according to this report from NBC, university officials around the country are reporting that an increasing number of students are relying on college food banks.

Thanh Truong of "The Today Show" visited a student food bank at Michigan State University in East Lansing, where university officials insisted that the students who use the facility are in desperate need. "The perception that college students are free and easy, that they can go party any time, and that they have a lot of excess money just isn't real anymore," Dennis Martell, the university's Director of Health Education Services, said.



Democrats to Run on National Security in 2010. GOP Cries Foul.

DCCC Chair: GOP Opposition To National Security Funds Will Be Issue In 2010

Democratic leadership in Congress is pledging to make Republican votes against key national security and defense funding measures a feature in the upcoming congressional elections, following the botched Christmas Day terrorist attack aboard a Detroit-bound airliner.

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Chris Van Hollen (D-M.D.) told the Huffington Post on Wednesday that it was the committee's duty to ensure that, come 2010, the American people are aware that House Republicans opposed a Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill that included funding for airport security.

The 2010 appropriations bill contained Transportation Security Administration funding for explosives detection systems and other security measures -- it was opposed by House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), and Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) among others.

"It is not so much that the DCCC will be holding people accountable but the American people will be holding people accountable. They deserve to have that info and we will make sure they have it," Van Hollen said, in an interview that took place Wednesday afternoon. "And I'm assuming our Republican colleagues will have an opportunity to explain why they voted against additional resources for homeland security."

The same dynamic would hold true in the Senate, where a procedural play by Republican senators to derail health care reform by nearly killing a separate bill to fund defense operations would be held against them, predicted Van Hollen predicted.

"I think we are going to be very interested in the rationale for those votes," said the Maryland Democrat. "I mean in the Senate you have the situation where Republicans were delaying a vote on the defense appropriations bill for the purpose of slowing down health care reform and I think the American people don't want our national security to be held hostage to Republican procedural gamesmanship on health care."
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Latin America sees its first same-sex marriage

Less than one month after a Buenos Aires court derailed the marriage of Alex Freyre and Jose Maria di Bello, the couple wed Monday at the southern tip of Argentina, making it the first same-sex marriage in Latin America.

"As a couple, we dreamed of marrying for a long time," Freyre told the state-run Telam news agency.

Their marriage was hailed as a victory by gay rights groups in Argentina, though it was unknown whether the legality of their marriage would face any challenges.

After a legal battle earlier this year, a court in the capital, Buenos Aires, ruled that a ban on same-sex marriage was illegal and ordered the proper authorities to grant the couple a marriage license if they applied for one.

On the eve of their December 1 wedding, however, another court filed an injunction, putting the brakes on the nuptials.

In Argentina, the issue of same-sex marriage is decided on the local and state level.

So Freyre and di Bello went to the southernmost state of Tierra del Fuego, where a pro-gay marriage governor welcomed the event, Telam reported.

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Via CNN.
left4dead: My BFF Keith

Happy New Year, We're Dropping Minimum Wage!

DENVER—Colorado's minimum wage will drop slightly in the new year—the first decrease in a minimum wage in any state since the federal minimum wage was adopted in 1938.

Colorado's wage is dropping 3 cents an hour, from $7.28 to the federal minimum wage of $7.25. That's because Colorado is one of 10 states that tie the state minimum wage to inflation. The indexing is thought to protect low-wage workers from having flat wages as the cost of living goes up.

But because Colorado's provision allows wage declines, the minimum wage is going down because the state's consumer price index fell 0.6 percent last year. The drop is attributed to lower fuel prices.
State labor officials say about 48,000 people earned the minimum wage in 2008.

Sauce via the Denver Post
  • Current Mood

The Mastermind Behind Prop 8 and His Lesbian Sister

Frank Schubert, communications consultant extraordinaire for foes of gay marriage, is the man responsible for managing California's Proposition 8 campaign and the man responsible for much of the advertising and communications strategy behind Maine's Question 1. Both of these statewide ballot initiatives took marriage rights away from gay and lesbian couples in their respective states, something that Frank Schubert wears as a badge of honor. The man has even won awards for leading the charge against gay marriage, an issue Schubert finds detrimental to the public health and dangerous to children and society.

Maybe someone should take a second to ask Schubert, then, if he finds his sister a threat to the family. Because as it turns out, Frank's sister, Anne Marie Schubert, is not only openly lesbian, but she's political, too. According to the Bay Area Reporter, she's running for a judge seat on the Sacramento County Superior Court.

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Tuomiokirkko photo from

Five dead in Espoo shopping mall shooting, shooter on the run.

Police describe shooter as Ibrahim Shkupolli, a man in his early 40s; Sello shopping mall evacuated and cordoned off

Five people have been reported dead on Thursday morning in a shooting incident at the Sello shopping mall in the Leppävaara district of Espoo.
Apparently a man in his early forties, whose identity is known to police, began shooting in the Prisma supermarket with a 9mm handgun at around 10 a.m. Police named the suspect as Ibrahim Shkupolli.

First reports indicated that three men and one woman were killed. A fifth victim was later found at a private apartment, and is believed to be the gunman's ex-wife.
One of the male victims at Sello was apparently a sales clerk, and was shot twice in the head. A woman was shot in the stomach and two other men were later shot in a different part of the mall complex
No further details have been given of other casualties.

The mall was emptied and police are continuing to search for the gunman in the shopping centre and the surrounding area. Prisma store staff and witnesses were taken to the public library on the premises.
The police will hold a press conference on the matter at 14:30, and a photograph of the suspect is to be released.
Numerous police vehicles and ambulances are at the scene, and commuter trains were not stopping at Leppävaara station.
Police warn that the man is armed and dangerous, and have appealed for witnesses and anyone who knows of Shkupolli's whereabouts.

The situation is still unfolding and we will update as news comes in.


Additional links for the non-Finns:
The New York Times

The police have just released info that all victims were somehow linked to the shooter.

I was this close to being there, but then I overslept. I personally am staying away from the comment sections of Finnish news sites, I'm sure there's xenophobia in abundance there. Not to mention criticism about gun laws, which has nothing to do with this, considering that because the guy has prior convictions, he probably doesn't have a goddamn license anyway.

ETA: The shooter killed himself.
  • Current Mood
    pissed off

Operation Bombshell: Striptease Lessons for Military Wives

Separated from their husbands by yearlong tours in Afghanistan, military wives are taking burlesque basic training to surprise their returning spouses and jumpstart their sex lives. Lily Burana, an exotic-dancer-turned-writer-turned-Army-wife who has endured her own deployment blues is the instructor. She is on a one-woman mission on a morale-boosting quest which she calls Operation Bombshell.

Every few weeks, Burana travels to some strip-mall-laced military town and offers 60-minute classes in basic burlesque. Fundamentals include the glove strip (pull four fingers with the teeth, bend, slip the tips under a foot and pull off the rest as you stand); the showgirl bounce (hands on hip, right foot forward, a slight dip at the knee); and proper boa tossing (like snapping a whip).

Though she knows a thing or two about removing her clothes to thrumming music, nothing much comes off in her classes except boas and gloves. Burana does not charge a fee for her classes, and schedules her classes at the wives' request.

“Military wives are the strongest women that I know,” she said. “It’s moving every 12 to 18 months. It’s multiple deployments. It’s raising your children without a spouse at home. It’s trying to work when you’re moving as much as you do. All kinds of things that are absolutely mind-bending.”

In her latest book, “I Love a Man in Uniform”, Burana describes her unlikely marriage in 2002 to a soldier who taught at West Point and her struggles to gain acceptance among Army wives and their husbands. She notes that West Point once prevented her from doing a book signing on campus because she had been a stripper. (Her husband recently retired from the academy as a lieutenant colonel.)


Gingrich Again Says U.S. Should 'Frankly Discriminate' In The Name Of National Security

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich reiterated his belief that the U.S. should begin to "profile," and "frankly discriminate against" people in order to prevent another attempted attack.

On Fox News today, Gingrich first said that "the entire administration's approach is fundamentally wrong," and that "we have to be honest about our enemies."

"I think that we have to be prepared to profile based on behavior. Not ethnic profiling, not racial profiling, but look at people's behavior," he said.

He continued:

The fact is we are faced with an enemy, driven by religion. The extremist wing of Islam. A minority but nonetheless definable. We should be honest about this. We should target the people who are engaged in that community.

Gingrich also said that "we should methodically isolate, and frankly discriminate against" that community.

He then slammed the Obama administration for its decision to try the Flight 253 suspect in a criminal court: "This administration doesn't believe in interrogations, it believes in giving terrorists all the rights of an American citizen, which is fundamentally wrong if you are in a war."

Newt went on:

Terrorists are combatants. They should be dealt with as combatants. They should be interrogated by the intelligence community. They should not be interrogated by the FBI. They shouldn't be read their Miranda rights. They are not American citizens.

These remarks are a continuation of Gingrich's push for more profiling in national security, which he kicked off yesterday with series of angry tweets.



Iceland approves Icesave compensation

"ICELAND parliament's today approved paying nearly 4 billion euros ($6.42 billion) to Britain and the Netherlands, which had compensated more than 320,000 of their savers in a failed Icelandic bank.

Although the measure has stirred up resentment among many ordinary Icelanders hard hit by their country's financial meltdown in 2008, lawmakers approved the measure by a vote of 33 to 30 as the issue had become a major obstacle in the small Atlantic island nation's bid to join the European Union.

"Congratulations Iceland" shouted a lawmaker from the governing centre-left coalition, while an opposition lawmaker cried out "treason".

The measure approves the payout of 3.8 billion euros ($6.1 billion) to the British and Dutch governments, which had partially compensated their savers who lost money in the collapse of the Icesave online bank.

Icesave, an online subsidiary of the Landsbanki bank that had to be rescued in October 2008 as the global credit crunch hit, had attracted savers due to its high interest rates.

The British and Dutch governments turned to Reykjavik for the money to be returned, and an initial compensation deal was approved by Iceland's parliament in August.

But amendments negotiated by Social Democratic Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir in order to get the deal through parliament were rejected by Britain and the Netherlands, forcing a new vote.

The measure adopted on Wednesday foresees the staggering through 2024 the payment of the 3.8 billion euros, which is equivalent to nearly 40 per cent of the country's annual gross domestic product.

A poll taken in August suggested nearly 70 per cent of Icelanders were against the Icesave deal, the compensation amounting to about 12,000 euros ($19,261) for each citizen on the island nation of 320,000 people."


From Kern County: McFarland Police Department Assumes Law Enforcement Function

"McFarland Police Department Assumes Law Enforcement Function"

*headdesk* oh it gets better. Read on my twisted little taters;

POSTED: 11:46 am PST December 31, 2009
McFarland Police Department Assumes Law Enforcement Function - Bakersfield News Story - KERO Bakersfield

McFARLAND, Calif. -- At 12:01 a.m. Thursday, the McFarland Police Department will assume the law enforcement function in the city of McFarland.

The City of McFarland has been in negotiations with the city of Delano for dispatching services. As of Thursday, they have not reached an agreement.

Therefore all 911 calls will still come into the Kern County Sheriff's Communication Center.

They said they will take the necessary information and then call the McFarland Police Department and relay the information to them.

This will obviously cause a 2-5 minute delay in response. McFarland hopes to complete an agreement with Delano in the very near future.

Citizens of McFarland are encouraged to call 792-2121 which is the direct line to the McFarland Police Department.

In a true emergency, citizens may not have time to dial anything but 911. The Sheriff's Office will relay this information to McFarland Police as quickly as possible.


So let me get this strait... The McFarland PD up to this point DID NOT take calls?

If the person needing help doesn't call the direct line, McFarland Police will have to rely on Bako Sheriffs for their calls. And this will add 2-5 minutes to the already 2 hour response time. Unless of course someone is dead or dying then the response is 20 minutes. If you want help in those cases you still have to call an ambulance service or hospital directly.

Oh and this is the same county that just put a fence around their prison, which by the way GUTTED someone trying to escape in pretty much the same as the scene in the movie SAW. The man had to be cut out of it:   Fence Keeps Lerdo Prisoners From Escaping

I'm so glad I don't live in Kern anymore. When my Mum's gall bladder went wonky on her a couple months ago (here in Tennessee) we had two cop cars, an ambulance and three fire trucks (including a ladder truck which we still laugh about) at the house in less than 10 minutes. All we asked for was an ambulance.
Mr. T Santa

Blackwater Guards murder 17; Walk Away Scot Free

by The Associated Press
December 31, 2009

A federal judge dismissed all charges Thursday against five Blackwater Worldwide security guards accused of killing unarmed Iraqi civilians in a crowded Baghdad intersection in 2007.

Citing repeated government missteps, U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina dismissed a case that had been steeped in international politics. The shooting in busy Nisoor Square left 17 Iraqis dead and inflamed anti-American sentiment abroad. The Iraqi government wanted the guards to face trial in Iraq and officials there said they would closely watch how the U.S. judicial system handled the case.

Urbina said the prosecutors ignored the advice of senior Justice Department officials and improperly built their case on sworn statements that had been given under a promise of immunity. Urbina said the government's explanations were "contradictory, unbelievable and lacking in credibility."Collapse )
' jules
  • schmiss

It's time.

Postponed from last night due to Rush'sheartisabigfatidiotgate, here are your results for 2009's Most Influential People! Everyone who received over 60 votes is listed, which gave us 33 finalists (with a three-way tie for 29th.)

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Jon and Gitmo

Study: TV May Perpetuate Race Bias

Most people regard watching television as a passive activity. You sit, you watch. Occasionally, you change the channel. But a new study reveals that even this passive diversion may lead to actively damaging effects, particularly when it comes to issues of race.

In a series of intricately designed experiments, psychologists at Tufts University demonstrate that subtle racial biases are often expressed by characters on popular television shows, and that viewers not only pick up these attitudes but allow them to shape their own outlooks on race. The most insidious part of this cultural traffic, the researchers found, is that the transmission of race bias appears to occur subconsciously, unbeknownst to the viewer.

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More from Fail-Mart

Walmart Sued Over Surveillance Camera in Bathroom

Seven former and current Walmart employees are suing the retail giant after one of its Pennsylvania stores installed a surveillance camera in a unisex bathroom used by employees and customers, according to ABC News.

The camera was allegedly installed by two employees in the company’s loss-prevention department, with the aim of monitoring employees for theft.

They installed the device in a bathroom–dressing room in the Tire and Lube center of a Walmart Supercenter in Easton, Pennsylvania. Workers discovered the camera in March 2008. It’s not known how long the camera was recording activity in the bathroom before it was found.


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Trouble Train

~ONTD_Political's Top 10 Posts Of 2009/New Year's Eve Party Post~

Polling's closed and the votes are tallied! Let's reflect on the past year by showing the Top 10 Posts Of 2009!:

10) Palin Stan Writes In Bleeding Text

9) Balloon Boy Live Post

7) TIE: Don't Cry For Me Argentina '09 & Health Care Reform Live Threads

6) Uncle Pat, It's Time For Your Medication

5) afa_mom's New Hampshire Homeschooling Troll Post

4) Glenn Beck Writes Incest Fic

3) Sarah Palin Resigns As Governor

2) Iran Election Live Threads

1) Obama Inaugural Live Post!

Links to the winners Vote Totals