March 20th, 2010

Nina Maria Kleivan dressed up baby as Hitler, Stalin and Saddam as part of 'evil doers' photo essay

Source: NY Daily News

While most mothers dress their baby daughters in frilly dresses, a Danish-Norwegian artist dressed hers up as Baby Hitler.

Nina Maria Kleivan created a photo essay on evil doers, dolling her daughter up as despicable despots ranging from Adolf Hitler to Benito Mussolini.

"We all have evil within us. Even small children are evil towards each other," Kleivan told the Haaretz newspaper in Israel.

"Even my daughter could end up ruling Denmark with an iron fist," said Kleivan, whose daughter, Faustina, is now 11 years old.

The controversial photo-series, titled "Potency," has been exhibited in Denmark, Sweden, Italy and Germany.

Kleivan said the idea came to her over a decade ago while she was recovering from a tough pregnancy that left her in a wheelchair for four months.

Bored and unable to get to her studio, Kleivan began sewing little costumes of the most evil historical figures of the 20th century and photographing Faustina in them.

In the photo series, baby Faustina also portrays Joseph Stalin, Saddam Hussein, Ayatollah Khomeini, Chairman Mao Zedong, Idi Amin, Augusto Pinochet and Slobodan Milosevic.

"You need to be conscious that your actions have consequences that impact on your fellow human beings," said Kleivan - whose father, a member of the Norwegian resistance in World War II, was held in a German prison camp.

"The people I let my daughter portray didn't give a damn about the human cost, the casualties, their thoughts caused," she said.

"Even though comical, you're not supposed to only laugh at these pictures; you need to contemplate them, ponder where this evil comes from."


Pictures: One at source and more here:

ETA: How did I forget L'il Hitler?!

  • Current Mood
comedy | Canada: Model UN

ontd_political PotD: March 19, 2010.

Over 500 athletes from 44 countries around the world have once again descended on Vancouver Canada, for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Paralympic Games, (officially known as the X Paralympic Winter Games). After a separate torch relay and opening ceremony, competitors faced off in five different sports: Sledge hockey, Wheelchair curling, Alpine skiing, Biathlon, and Cross-country skiing - the last three broken into classes of sitting, standing and visually impaired.

Currently Russia is leading the medals race, with Canada and Ukraine tied for second place. The Winter Paralympics continue until the Closing Ceremony on Sunday March 21st. Collected here are some scenes from this year's games.
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Source: "2010 Winter Paralympics" | The Big Picture @
Murasaki Shikibu

Calif police department on alert for deadly traps

Calif police department on alert for deadly traps

Police in this picturesque city in rural Riverside County have been on edge in recent weeks. Someone is trying to kill them.

First, a natural gas pipe was shoved through a hole drilled into the roof of the gang enforcement unit's headquarters. The building filled with flammable vapor but an officer smelled the danger before anyone was hurt.

"It would have taken out half a city block," Capt. Tony Marghis said.

Then, a ballistic contraption was attached to a sliding security fence around the building. An officer opening the black steel gate triggered the mechanism, which sent a bullet within eight inches of his face.

In another attempted booby trap attack, some kind of explosive device was attached to a police officer's unmarked car while he went into a convenience store.

"There's a person or people out there, a bunch of idiots, trying to do damage to us," Hemet Police Chief Richard Dana said. "We can't expect our luck to hold up, we need help."

Since New Year's Eve, there have been several other booby trap attempts to kill officers, Dana said.

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...Wow. o_O I mean, just, wow. I'm glad no one has been killed, because that is kinda bananas.
' jules

Bort Stupak can suck it

Pelosi: 'No Separate Vote' For Stupak...Or Anybody Else

House Democratic leadership has apparently told Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) to go take a hike--and they'll move forward without him, or any other anti-abortion Dems threatening to switch their votes from 'yes' to 'no.'

Just off the House floor moments ago, Pelosi told reporters there will be "no separate vote" on abortion or any other measure.

And Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), a leading pro-choice progressive, said they're moving ahead without him. "There's not going to be any deal made with Mr. Stupak...there's been no deal whatsoever. He's been told that his language is not going to be added to the legislation," she told me this morning.

Stupak has been threatening to vote against health care reform legislation for months if its abortion language isn't tightened significantly, and he's claimed repeatedly that upwards of a dozen other Democrats would join him if he doesn't get his way. That'd be enough to kill the bill.

Yesterday, though, Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV)--a Stupak follower--told reporters that the dozen is probably down to about six. And that may not be enough to force leadership's hand.

"We think we have the votes regardless, and we're going to be moving forward," Schakowsky said. "Yes. We do think we have the votes without him."

A huge development, if true.


If Pelosi can pull this off she is officially the baddest bitch in Washington DC.

Funk the War Dance Party Protests Through D.C.

A day ahead of the Answer Coalition's highly anticipated war protest, students formed a dance party and boogied through the streets of D.C. with the same goal in mind.

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i wanted to post this because it's getting no attention, and that sucks. i was at this protest and, as a matter of fact, there were at least four arrests and several injuries - a student from my school threw a paint bomb at an army recruiting center and got arrested, a guy tried to get into the street after the cops herded us onto the sidewalk and got arrested, and two kids who climbed onto the department of treasury with a sign got arrested and thrashed pretty hard.

video of the kids on the treasury:

Judge in 9/11 health trial orders settlement renegotiation for sick Ground Zero heroes

Source: NY Daily News

A judge Friday tore up a $575 million deal for Ground Zero workers - and ordered lawyers to come up with a settlement that matches the sacrifice of the sick.

Stunned 9/11 heroes applauded and city officials grimaced after Judge Alvin Hellerstein scuttled the agreement struck by lawyers just last week.

"In my judgment, this settlement is not enough," Hellerstein said after hearing tearful rescue and cleanup workers vent frustration in Manhattan Federal Court.

"From the beginning I felt ... that the people who responded on 9/11 were our heroes," he said, speaking from "the heart" without any notes for 25 minutes.

"They cushioned the blow. ... They brought us back from that blow."

But now, he said, they were being shortchanged and pushed into signing on to an incomprehensible deal before they even knew how much they would get.

In the end, they would probably receive too little, while lawyers who stood to make $200 million would get too much, he said.

The judge said those lawyers are "not entitled" to the one-third that many plaintiffs signed away - and he vowed to come up with a lower percentage for their fee.

He also stunned the city by insisting the fees "be paid by the Captive Insurance" company - not out of the workers' awards.

He was referring to the $1 billion federally funded WTC Captive Insurance Company, created to protect the city against 10,000-plus 9/11 lawsuits.

The tentative pact to settle those suits set up a point system to calculate awards based on a worker's illness, age, medical history and time spent toiling in The Pit.

That framework would make a Talmudic scholar's head "spin and revolve 24 hours a day and still it would be hard to grasp these numbers," the judge said.

"I will not preside over a settlement based on fear or ignorance."

The ruling was a massive blow to Manhattan lawyers Paul Napoli and Marc Bern, who represent about 90% of the sickened rescue and cleanup workers.

Neither could be reached for comment, but when Hellerstein announced last week that he would reconsider their fees Bern complained it was "unfair."

It also was an unexpected stick in the eye to Mayor Bloomberg, who had praised the tentative settlement and hoped it would end years of legal wrangling.

"We are disappointed," Corporation Counsel Michael Cardozo said. "His reaction to the settlement will make it extremely difficult to resolve these cases."

Captive Insurance honcho Christine LaSala added, "The judge has now made it more difficult, if not impossible, for the people bringing these claims to obtain compensation and a settlement."

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Some of you in my last entry expressed disbelief that this has been unsettled for nearly ten years. People in New York can attest that NOTHING has been 100% settled from this. Only recently, within the past two years, has my friends sad comment of "people can't tell Ground Zero from a hole in the ground" been challenged. They FINALLY started noticeable work in 2009. They haven't even found all the remains, with more popping up in a nearby building in 2006. And in 2007 two more firefighters died in a fire at the same building:

This may never end in our lifetimes.

~The Freedom Alliance Scandal~

This post is combining the accusations and rebuttals together. Also, the icon is being used for the lulz:

The Allegations by Debbie Schlussel:

For the last several years, Sean Hannity and the Freedom Alliance “charity” have conducted “Freedom Concerts” across America. They’ve told you that they are raising money to pay for the college tuition of the children of fallen soldiers and to pay severely wounded war vets. And on Friday Night, Hannity will be honored with an award for this “Outstanding Community Service by a Radio Talk Show Host” at Talkers Magazine’s convention.

But it’s all a huge scam.

In fact, less than 20%–and in two recent years, less than 7% and 4%, respectively–of the money raised by Freedom Alliance went to these causes, while millions of dollars went to expenses, including consultants and apparently to ferry the Hannity posse of family and friends in high style. And, despite Hannity’s statements to the contrary on his nationally syndicated radio show, few of the children of fallen soldiers got more than $1,000-$2,000, with apparently none getting more than $6,000, while Freedom Alliance appears to have spent tens of thousands of dollars for private planes. Moreover, despite written assurances to donors that all money raised would go directly to scholarships for kids of the fallen heroes and not to expenses, has begun charging expenses of nearly $500,000 to give out just over $800,000 in scholarships.

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The Rebuttal written by Frum Forum correspondents

Debbie Schlussel posted a long piece last evening about a charity that Sean Hannity is affiliated with, accusing them of malfeasance and mismangement.

FrumForum has done an exhaustive investigation of the charity in question, Freedom Alliance, and found enough evidence to substantially rebut each of Schlussel’s claims. I’ll approach them one by one.

Schlussel Accusation: Sean Hannity improperly benefited from Freedom Alliance by charging private jets, hotel stays and luxury cars.

Freedom Alliance’s press release today stated categorically that they have “never provided planes, hotels, cars, limos, or anything else to Sean [Hannity] … to be clear Sean pays for all his own transportation, hotels, and all related expenses for himself and his family and friends and staff.” We are satisfied that this is true.

It is true that Freedom Alliance spent $60,000 on aviation services in 2006, but there is no evidence that this was for Sean Hannity’s benefit, and it seems unlikely that the money was used to lease a Gulfstream 5. Rates for G5 aircraft average around $8,000 an hour. $60,000 would not buy much at that rate.

We have also been able to confirm that Sean Hannity has no operational control over the organization. Nor is he even a member of the group’s board.

If Schlussel stands behind her statement, then she will have to do better than a quote from a blind source, who is, as she admits, a friend of a friend.

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Additional Sources

- Freedom Alliance press release reposted by American Spectator
- Media Matters weighs in.
-Daily Kos aired the same allegations 3 years ago, as a point of reference
- Charity Navigator Analysis of Freedom Alliance

Hey guys, how are things going in Poland?

Poland’s Former Deputy PM Gets Prison Sentence in Sex Scandal

By Marcin Sobczyk

In Poland’s conflict-ridden years of 2005-2007 when the previous government had to resort to support from populists and nationalists to pass legislation, a simple farmer with a criminal record was made a deputy prime minister to secure parliamentary backing behind the conservative minority.

Andrzej Lepper has always been the enfant terrible of the Polish political scene, known mostly for his road blockages. Many thought he was unelectable to any public office until 2001 when, amid massive dissatisfaction with sky-high unemployment at the time, his Self-Defense party and the far-right League of Polish Families won seats in Parliament.

It wasn’t before 2005 that Lepper felt he was finally someone important. His party’s support was instrumental for the largest conservative grouping in Parliament that lacked majority to govern. In 2006, he was finally made a deputy prime minister.

Because of his rowdy past, in 2007 he had had more than 100 criminal and civil lawsuits and six sentences against him. Many of his party colleagues had a similar past.

So when in late 2006 a newspaper alleged Lepper demanded sexual favors in return for party jobs, it wasn’t his first criminal case and it wouldn’t be the last. He was finally kicked out of the government amid a corruption scandal the following year before his party failed to get any seats or public funding in the 2007 election, leaving him completely sidelined.

And now this latest criminal sentence, even though it can be and will be appealed, is somewhat of a wooden stake right through Lepper’s political heart. Two years and three months in prison — that’s pretty bad.

That he’s not being missed must be much worse to Lepper who for six years of his life considered himself important.


Oh uh...sorry I asked
gay rights

Episcopal Church Confirms First Lesbian Bishop

A majority of bishops and dioceses of the Episcopal Church have approved the election of the church’s second openly gay bishop, the Rev. Mary D. Glasspool, a decision likely to increase the tension with fellow Anglican churches around the world that do not approve of homosexuality.

The worldwide Anglican Communion, the network of churches connected to the Church of England, has been in turmoil since the Americans elected their first openly gay bishop, V. Gene Robinson, in New Hampshire in 2003. Theological conservatives in the Communion say the Bible condemns homosexuality, while liberals say the Scripture is open to interpretation.

Bishop Glasspool, 56, is to be consecrated as one of two new assistant bishops, known as suffragan bishops, in Los Angeles on May 15. Both elected suffragan bishops are women — the first ever to serve in the diocese.

Both were elected at a convention of the diocese in December, but according to church rules had to win the approval of a majority of the bishops and standing committees (made up of clergy and laypeople) of the church’s 110 dioceses. Bishop Glasspool’s confirmation was never certain.

Bishop Glasspool, who has been serving in Maryland as an adviser to the bishops for nine years, said Wednesday in an interview: “I feel overjoyed. I feel relieved. I’m breathing again.”

She and her partner, Becki Sander, a postgraduate student in social work, have been together for 22 years.

The bishop said she intended to reach out to those who opposed her. Asked whether she anticipated that her election would have repercussions in the Anglican Communion, she said, “While I understand that not everyone rejoices, I don’t understand what will functionally be different tomorrow than today with respect to our relationships around the world.”

Conservative prelates in the Communion had asked the Episcopal Church to refrain from electing any more openly gay bishops, but Episcopalians passed a resolution at their convention in 2009 saying that the church should be open to the ministry of all qualified people, regardless of sexual orientation.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, the leader of the Church of England and spiritual head of the Anglican Communion, issued a warning in December that Bishop Glasspool’s election “raises very serious questions not just for the Episcopal Church and its place in the Anglican Communion, but for the Communion as a whole.”

He did not elaborate on what steps the Communion might take should her election be confirmed.

Bishop Glasspool’s father was also an Episcopal priest. She was born on Staten Island, and grew up in the rectory of St. James Church in Goshen, N.Y., where her father served for 35 years.


I love being Episcopalian, and the Anglican Communion really ticks me off when they disapprove of something like this. I'm all for church unity but equal rights are a bit more important to me.

Good News! Bishop Pedobear To Resign and Join The Boy Scouts as Scout Leader To Redeem Himself!

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Declares, "Bishop Pedobear is Doing God's Work! He Will Keep Those Poor Boys Safe From The Gays!"

Boy Scout Sex Abuse Files: Suit Claims Group Kept 'Perversion Files' As Part Of Coverup

The Boy Scouts of America has long kept an extensive archive of secret documents that chronicle the sexual abuse of young boys by Scout leaders over the years.

The "perversion files," a nickname the Boy Scouts are said to have used for the documents, have rarely been seen by the public, but that could all change in the coming weeks in an Oregon courtroom.

The lawyer for a man who was molested in the 1980s by a Scout leader has obtained about 1,000 Boy Scouts sex files and is expected to release some of them at a trial that began Wednesday. The lawyer says the files show how the Boy Scouts have covered up abuse for decades.

On Friday, testimony from a bishop for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints responsible for a Scout troop of church members suggested the Scouts never provided training about spotting abuse or preventing it.

The trial is significant because the files could offer a rare window into how the Boy Scouts have responded to sex abuse by Scout leaders. The only other time the documents are believed to have been presented at a trial was in the 1980s in Virginia.

At the start of the Oregon trial, attorney Kelly Clark recited the Boy Scout oath and the promise to obey Scout law to be "trustworthy." Then he presented six boxes of documents that he said will show "how the Boy Scouts of America broke that oath."

He held up file folder after file folder he said contained reports of abuse from around the country, telling the jury the efforts to keep them secret may have actually set back efforts to prevent child abuse nationally.

"The Boy Scouts of America ignored clear warning signs that Boy Scouts were being abused," Clark said.

Charles Smith, attorney for the national Boy Scouts, said in his own opening statement the files were kept under wraps because they "were replete with confidential information."

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Radical Right-wing Extremist Threatens to Torture Americans and Destroy Our Altar of Entertainment

New Reality TV Show Causing Neurological Brain Damage on Majority of Americans. Inhumane Transmission Will Continue Until Ransom Is Paid. CDC Recommends gauging your own eyes.

Cable networks eye Sarah Palin reality show

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – Sarah Palin is closer to landing a deal for a reality show.

Sources say A&E Networks and Discovery Communications want to acquire Palin's project, which focuses on the ex-governor giving a guided tour of her native Alaska -- visiting fishing boats and taking a trip to a gold mine, to cite a couple of examples. Mark Burnett is executive producer of the project, whose working title is "Sarah Palin's Alaska."

A&E Networks hasn't officially put in a bid for the show, but sources indicate that the company is interested in the project for several of its brands -- A&E, History or Lifetime.

Discovery Communications is likewise vying for the project for one or more of its outlets, such as TLC. Some sources say the flagship Discovery Channel is no longer in play, while others say otherwise.

The former vice presidential candidate is asking for between $1 million and $1.5 million per episode, a hefty amount for a first-year cable series.

Palin initially pitched the show to broadcast networks. Given the show's laid-back nature theme and lack of high-stakes drama that tends to typify broadcast reality hits, industry executives see cable as a better fit.

A&E is the home of bold reality fare like "Intervention" and "Dog the Bounty Hunter," while Discovery has compatible outdoors series, such as Alaska-set "Deadliest Catch."

"It will sell," predicts one insider. "One way or another."

A&E and Discovery had no comment.
Murasaki Shikibu

Seoul to Combat Internet Addiction

Seoul to Combat Internet Addiction

From next year, gamers and other Internet addicts will be able to install free software programs into their laptops to limit their access time to the Internet, the Office of the Prime Minister said Monday.

The plan was unveiled following the increase in addicts here, which, according to the government, has reached approximately 2 million. However, industry experts say the real figure is much higher.

The government will make available two types of software aimed at limiting bloggers' hours online - a consensual shut-down program and Internet Fatigue, a program designed to make gamers become bored as time goes by.

Under the consensual shut-down program, bloggers can set the days or hours they can access the Internet.

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How effective is voluntary limits going to be with addicts, I wonder. And how would Internet Fatigue work, exactly? How would it make being online boring?

It seems like the PC-bangs ("PC room" in the article) should be putting time limits on how long people can physically use the computers, like having them shut down after a certain number of hours, and you can either wait an hour (for the people that might be using the PC-bangs like net cafes are used in Japan, as a cheap place to crash) or have someone working there reset it (for a new user). I just remember the guy in his twenties who died in a PC-bang a couple years ago after gaming for IIRC 48 hours straight.
' jules


ETA: I found an article with more information, posting here.

Tea Party Protests: 'Ni**er,' 'Faggot' Shouted At Members Of Congress

Abusive, derogatory and even racist behavior directed at House Democrats by Tea Party protesters on Saturday left several lawmakers in shock.

Preceding the president's speech to a gathering of House Democrats, thousands of protesters descended around the Capitol to protest the passage of health care reform. The gathering quickly turned into abusive heckling, as members of Congress passing through Longworth House office building were subjected to epithets and even mild physical abuse.

A staffer for Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) told reporters that Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-M.D.) had been spit on by a protestor. Rep. John Lewis (D-G.A.), a hero of the civil rights movement, was called a 'ni--er.' And Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was called a "faggot," as protestors shouted at him with deliberately lisp-y screams. Frank, approached in the halls after the president's speech, shrugged off the incident.

But Clyburn was downright incredulous, saying he had not witnessed such treatment since he was leading civil rights protests in South Carolina in the 1960s.

"It was absolutely shocking to me," Clyburn told the Huffington Post. "Last Monday, this past Monday, I stayed home to meet on the campus of Claflin University where fifty years ago as of last Monday... I led the first demonstrations in South Carolina, the sit ins... And quite frankly I heard some things today I have not heard since that day. I heard people saying things that I have not heard since March 15, 1960 when I was marching to try and get off the back of the bus."

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Teabagger protester yells 'faggot' at gay Rep. Barney Frank in US House bldg, another calls Rep. John Lewis the n-word

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me rn:

ETA 2: Tim Ryan <3 speaks out against protesting bigots:

places || cairo
  • brecho

women's history month with brecho: day twenty

Again, no time to bold. But this is really all worth a read imo.

Egypt wrangles over whether women should be judges

A row over the appointment of female judges to an influential court that governs administrative law in Egypt has highlighted a general malaise over women holding top jobs.

On Monday Mohammed al-Husseini, the head of the Egyptian state council, overturned a decision by its general assembly which voted by overwhelming majority last week against appointing women judges to the council.

The state council or Maglis al-Dawla is the court authorised to settle administrative disputes concerning the exercise of public power.
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Murphy's Law?

Pennsylvania Congressman Patrick Murphy is a leading proponent for repealing ''Don't Ask, Don't Tell''

On Friday afternoon, March 19, a day before he is to be the keynote speaker at the 18th Annual National Dinner of the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-Penn.) took time out of his health care-packed congressional schedule to talk with Metro Weekly.

An Iraq war veteran who served as a captain in the Army's 82nd Airborne Division, Murphy took over the leadership of the bill to repeal the military's ''Don't Ask, Don't Tell'' policy in 2009 when former Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.) left Congress for a post in the State Department of the Obama administration.

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Rethinking Sex Offender Laws for Teenage Texting

In Iowa, Jorge Canal is on the sex offenders registry because, at age 18, he was convicted of distributing obscene materials to a minor after he sent a picture of his penis by cellphone to a 14-year-old female friend who had requested it.

In Florida, Phillip Alpert, then 18, was charged with distributing child pornography and put on the sex offenders registry because after a fight, he sent a photograph of his nude 16-year old girlfriend by e-mail to dozens of people, including her parents.

In most states, teenagers who send or receive sexually explicit photographs by cellphone or computer — known as “sexting” — have risked felony child pornography charges and being listed on a sex offender registry for decades to come.

But there is growing consensus among lawyers and legislators that the child pornography laws are too blunt an instrument to deal with an adolescent cyberculture in which all kinds of sexual pictures circulate on sites like MySpace and Facebook.

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Edit: fixed the cut and added the source

Tea Party To Use Cowboy Diplomacy To End Socialism. New Speaker Browning Will Do All The Talking.

Tea Party sign threatens gun violence if health care passes.

Tea Party activists have gathered on Capitol Hill today for a “Code Red” rally against health care reform. Speakers at the event included Republican Reps. Steve King (IA), Michele Bachmann (MN), and Mike Pence (IN). The gathering was organized by Tea Party Profiteer organizations like FreedomWorks and Americans for Prosperity. ThinkProgress attended today’s rally and spotted a sign threatening violence if health care passes. The sign reads: “Warning: If Brown can’t stop it, a Browning can,” referring to Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) and a Browning firearm:


Tea Party Forced To Retake "Protest & Revolution 101" This Summer.

Thousands of Protesters Flooded Nation's Capital. Demands Overthrow of Tyrant Bush's BFF!!!

DAY OF WRATH: Thousands Of Russian Protesters Demand Putin's Resignation

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — Thousands of people have rallied across Russia to denounce the government's economic policy and demand more freedom in a new challenge to the Kremlin reflecting increasing disillusionment and a growing potential for protests.

Many participants in Saturday's rallies, dubbed the "Day of Wrath" by the opposition, demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

About 1,000 people demonstrated in St. Petersburg holding placards reading "Putin's team must resign!"

Police did not intervene in the St. Petersburg protest, but they barred protesters chanting anti-Putin slogans from holding a rally in downtown Moscow. City police spokesman Viktor Biryukov said 70 people had been detained for taking part in the protest, which was not authorized by authorities.
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Christian Bale

New York schools' ban on homemade goods at bake sales has parents steamed

Low-fat Doritos and Pop Tarts are in; goodies baked at home are out. School officials say they're fighting obesity. Angry parents say it sends the wrong message about food habits.

Parents, teachers and children stage a "bake-in" to protest New York City's ban on homemade goods in public school bake sales, in part because they don't list nutritional content.

Homemade spinach pies are out; packaged baked potato chips are in. Mom's pumpkin bread is out; Kellogg's Pop-Tarts are in -- but they must be the whole-grain brown-sugar cinnamon variety.

At public school bake sales, Pop-Tarts are among 29 items the Department of Education has deemed nutritionally sound enough to sell in lieu of homemade goods, which have been banned in part because they do not list nutritional content.

Parents say the regulation, issued last month, pushes kids to eat processed food and undercuts parental efforts to teach nutrition at home by outlawing homemade goodies like organic popcorn balls and vegan cookies, which they argue are healthier than anything housed in a vending machine.

"What's the message we're sending here? That highly processed foods are healthier than food cooked at home," said Elizabeth Puccini, the mother of two elementary school pupils in Manhattan.

"You're bound to create a lifetime of bad eating habits with that," said Puccini, who organized a "bake-in" outside City Hall on Thursday to protest the rules.

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Greatest Entertainer and Bringer of LOLZ Will Retire! Will Spend More Time With Family

Poll Suggests Socialist Reign of Terror Will Last Eight Years Not Four.

Michael Steele Is A Liability To The GOP: POLL

RNC Chairman Michael Steele may actually be hurting the Republican party more than he is helping it,
a new National Journal poll of political insiders found.

According to the survey of 104 GOP political operatives, 71 percent said that they considered Steele to be a "liability," while only 20 percent saw him as an "asset" and 9 percent found him neither or both.

DNC Chairman Tim Kaine received much more positive marks from Democratic insiders. Of 103 people surveyed, 61 percent found Kaine to be an "asset," while 16 percent considered him a "liability" and 23 percent said he was neither. Those who found Kaine a "liability" seemed worried about recent -- and future -- election results.

Full results of the National Journal "insiders" poll here.

Political Insiders Poll
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Christian Bale

Show Some Courage! Jesse Ventura Challenges Bill O’Reilly to an Interview

Jesse Ventura talks about corporate media control and how the government is targeting the Internet for regulation and censorship. Ventura also talks about how Fox News refuse to have him on to talk about his new book. “O’Reilly won’t have me on because he can’t bully me and he knows it,” says Ventura, challenging O’Reilly to a debate.

The Body, The Mind, The Conspiracy Theorist: Ventura wears many hats

From now on call him Jesse "The Quote."

Former Gov. Jesse Ventura held a book signing Friday evening at the Apache Mall Barnes & Noble, speaking for more than an hour on a wide range of topics.

Ventura, 58, seemed to relish the opportunity, jabbing at politicians in one statement, while challenging those in attendance to question authority in another. While Ventura may have moved off the grid to Baja California, Mexico, several years ago, his flair for the spotlight and a listening ear didn't show any stage rust.

"Now, I can give you a little Jesse 'The Body' every now and then," he joked at one point. "I feel like George Carlin."

He talked about how Lee Harvey Oswald was the fall guy in a clandestine plot to assassinate John F. Kennedy. He joked, "Brett should come back," alluding to the Minnesota Vikings quarterback situation. He pushed those in attendance to take notice of the Mexican drug war and why he feels the legalization of marijuana would stop it. He stressed the need for health care in the U.S.

At other times, he roasted the Fox News Channel personalities, calling Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity the "Three Stooges."

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Judge Orders Polygraphs for Rape Victims

Source: CBS News

For reasons still unclear, a judge ordered four teenage sex-assault victims to take polygraph tests - after she convicted the boys accused in the cases.

The girls and their parents say the order by Cuyahoga Juvenile Court Judge Alison Floyd questions the victims' honesty. None of the girls complied.

The judge also ordered the four teenage boys accused of rape and other sex crimes in the cases to undergo polygraph tests as part of an assessment before sentencing. Floyd found them delinquent, the juvenile court equivalent of guilty.

The Plain Dealer newspaper said the judge's intent is unclear and she hadn't responded to requests for comment. A message was left Friday at her office by The Associated Press.

"The situation made no sense to us," the mother of a 16-year-old victim told the newspaper in a message relayed through the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.

The mother said her daughter's attacker told people that the polygraph requirement showed the judge didn't believe the girl's accusations.

Terri Stupica, an attorney representing one of the boys, said Friday that the judge proposed the polygraph requirement for the victim, not the defense. She declined further comment.

Prosecutor Bill Mason's office has filed briefs in two cases, asking the judge to stop ordering rape victims to submit to polygraph tests, and said Friday a challenge would be filed in a third case that it has identified.

The judge does not have authority over victims, according to the motion filed by assistant Prosecutor Nicole Ellis.

"Ordering a victim to submit to a polygraph test is harassment and is being done to punish the victim and is not necessary to rehabilitate (the) delinquent," the prosecution said in challenging a polygraph test for a victim in a case from last June 18 in suburban Brecksville.

The victim said she was fondled and forced to perform a sex act. The boy admitted to three counts of gross sexual imposition.

The polygraph requirement violates the spirit of Ohio's rape shield statute designed to protect victims of sexual assault, the motion by prosecutors said.

Megan O'Bryan, president and CEO of the Rape Crisis Center, said the center - which is assisting three of the victims - does not condone the polygraph tests for sexual-assault victims.


ETA: I watch Maury and The Steve Wilkos show all the time. We all know these are not admissible in court because they are only 99% accurate.

And what I notice about this is that 1% is TOTALLY IGNORED in these situations.

Look, just because 1% is LOW doesn't mean its NONEXISTENT! There are a percentage of people who this will not paint an accurate picture of.

However, I keep getting different answers to the above percentages, so this definitely shouldn't be allowed.
Chibis- ChibiKeith

Barney Frank continues to be his awesome self; Boehner still a boner.

Rep. Barney Frank distributes ‘Little Punk Staffer’ buttons to Capitol Hill aides.

At an American Bankers Association summit last week, House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) urged the bankers to fight financial reform. To make his point, he bashed people who work in Congress and called them “little punk staffers“:

“Don’t let those little punk staffers take advantage of you and stand up for yourselves,” Boehner said. “All of us are hearing from our friends and constituents on lack of credit, you can’t get a loan, the more your government takes and taxes, the more regulations you have to comply with the more cost you have there and less amount you are going to have available to loan to customers.”

White House National Economic Council Director Larry Summers fired back at Boehner, pointing out that the biggest problem in the financial system certainly isn’t that bankers do not have enough of a voice in the policy process. Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) wrote Boehner a letter and called on him to apologize: “I am appalled that a Leader of the House, who must know what good work is done by our staffs, would take such an inaccurate cheap-shot at these people, for the purpose of ingratiating himself with bankers.” A House staffer told ThinkProgress today that Frank is now distributing “Little Punk Staffer” buttons to Hill aides, in a clear shot at Boehner’s insult.

Delicious Sauce.

I really love my representative at times. This is one of them.
  • mswyrr

Man's Idea to Give Blood to Pay for Football Tickets Saved Him From a Fatal Iron Disorder

Love of Green Bay Packers Saves Fan Hall of Famer Jim Becker From 'Celtic' Disease:
One Man's Idea to Give Blood to Pay for Tickets Saved Him From a Fatal Iron Disorder
ABC News Medical Unit

March 17, 2010—

He may not be Irish. But Jim Becker of Racine, Wis., may be the only football fan in the U.S. who can make the case that his love for his team saved his life from an illness dubbed "the Celtic disease."

The Packers returned the honor this weekend, inducting the 80-year-old into the team's Fans Hall of Fame.

Becker has faithfully followed the Green Bay Packers for 56 years since shortly after he returned from the Korean War in 1952. As father of a growing family -- he eventually had 11 children -- he scraped together extra money to buy tickets by donating blood.

"At that time they were paying $15 dollars a pint. That more than covered the tickets," said Becker, who recalled paying $12 for a ticket to the infamous "ice bowl "championship game in 1967, where the temperature was 12 below zero.

It wasn't until 1975 that Becker's doctors told him his years of blood donation may have dampened the effects of an undiagnosed case of hemochromatosis -- a blood disorder that took his father's life.

Hemochromatosis is a genetic mutation in which the body absorbs too much iron in the gut, leading to toxic buildup of iron in the organs over the decades.

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Liz Carpenter, 1920-2010

AUSTIN — Liz Carpenter, a Texas humorist and women’s rights crusader who trolled the corridors of power in Washington as a journalist and trusted aide to Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson, never shedding her common touch and flair as a friend-maker, party-thrower and mentor, died Saturday morning in Austin. She was 89.

Ms. Carpenter penned the words that Mr. Johnson spoke to a grief-stricken nation as he arrived at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., hours after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy elevated a Texan for the first time to the country’s highest office.

She had strong convictions about politics. Ms. Carpenter was an unabashed New Deal Democrat and ardent feminist who co-founded the National Women’s Political Caucus in 1971 and hit the national lecture circuit in an unsuccessful push for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment.

“She is our conscience and our support system,” former Texas Gov. Ann Richards said. “She’s always there to remind us that the fight for equality continues.”

"Her combination of wit and wisdom is infectious, encouraging, enlightening... Her zest for life is an example to us all." —James Michener