March 22nd, 2010

[LB] Idea!

Heath Care Reform 411



For Consumers, Clarity on Health Care Changes
By TARA SIEGEL BERNARD

American consumers, who spent a year watching Congress scratch and claw over sweeping health care legislation, can now try to figure out what the overhaul would mean for them.

Before the vote on Sunday, members of the House of Representatives expressed their opinion of the health care legislation.
The uninsured are clearly the biggest beneficiaries of the legislation, which would extend the health care safety net for the lowest-income Americans.

The legislation is meant to provide coverage for as many as 32 million people who have been shut out of the market — whether because insurers deem them too sick or because they cannot afford ever-rising insurance premiums.

For people already covered by a large employer — most Americans, in other words — the effect would not be as significant. And yet, just about everyone might benefit from tighter insurance regulations.

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SOURCE - NYT

I thought this might help some people with questions they had about what it means for them.
* YA HEARRRRD

Hungover? Just wait til you read what comes next.

Not Over Yet: Senate Must Finalize Health Care



So, what's next?

House Democrats celebrated a major victory late last night after they passed a sweeping overhaul of the nation's health care system while simultaneously approving a package of fixes to the measure. But it's not the law of the land, not yet. What happens next is both simple in that there's one major vote left. But it's a bit complicated, since President Obama actually will sign one bill and then wait for the Senate to pass the other.

Come along and I'll explain.

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TL;DR:

- Obama signs bill on Tuesday
- Senate then works on editing bill - can only be done to bill that's actually law
- Republicans will try to block this, but it probably won't work
- Democrats say it'll take about a week, which in Senate-time means probably a month

BTW last night I dreamt that I went clubbing with Bart Stupak. He was singing "I Want it That Way" on karaoke. idek you guys...
=_=

Twelve States Plan Lawsuit Over Obama Health Overhaul

March 22 (Bloomberg) -- Twelve states plan to challenge the constitutionality of the health-care overhaul passed yesterday by the U.S. House, according to statements made today.

Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum said Florida, Texas and Pennsylvania are among 11 states that will sue “as soon as the president signs the bill,” claiming it places a burden on already cash-strapped states to pay for an expanded Medicaid program and build an exchange so individuals can find affordable insurance. Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli also said in a statement his state would sue on the similar grounds.

States nationwide are facing unprecedented declines in tax collections, according to the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government in Albany, New York, and are cutting spending on these health programs for low-income residents. Florida will have to spend an additional $1.6 billion for Medicaid alone and hire 1,000 new workers to accommodate the overhaul, McCollum said.

“This is a bad bill,” McCollum told a press conference in Orlando, Florida. “That’s a political determination and a practical one.”

He said the mandate for individuals to buy some form of health insurance is unconstitutional. It also infringes on the ability of states to provide other services, such as education, to its citizens because of the cost burdens, he said.

Virginia Lawsuit

Cuccinelli, the Virginia attorney general, said today he also planned to sue the federal government, calling the health bill an “unconstitutional overreach of its authority.

“With this law, the federal government will force citizens to buy health insurance, claiming it has the authority to do so because of its power to regulate interstate commerce,” he said in a press release. “We contend that if a person decides not to buy health insurance, that person -- by definition -- is not engaging in commerce, and therefore, is not subject to a federal mandate.”

The states that say they will sue are Alabama, Florida, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington.

Source

ETA: Louisiana too. (Thanks for the link, adelaidejewel!)

lol @ the states suing.  I am shocked.
jisookimcandela

Today is World Water Day!


"International World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The United Nations General Assembly responded by designating 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day.

Each year, World Water Day highlights a specific aspect of freshwater. UN-Water is dedicating World Water Day 2010 to the theme of water quality, reflecting its importance alongside quantity of the resource in water management."


Go to The Story of StuffWorld Water Day 2010 for more information. : )
Rainbow

House funds school loans and Pell grants: GOP = EDUACITON IS SOCIALISM

Now lets hope the Senate doesn't F*** this up....

House approves huge changes to student loan program

source Daniel de Vise Washington Post Staff Writer

 
Legislation hailed by supporters as the most significant change to college student lending in a generation passed the House on Sunday night.
The student aid initiative, which House Democrats attached to their final amendments to the health-care bill, would overhaul the student loan industry, eliminating a $60 billion program that supports private student loans with federal subsidies and replacing it with government lending to students. The House amendments will now go to the Senate.
By ending the subsidies and effectively eliminating the middleman, the student loan bill would generate $61 billion in savings over 10 years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

Most of those savings, $36 billion, would go to Pell grants, funding an era of steady and predictable increases in the massive but underfunded federal aid program for needy students. Smaller portions would go toward reducing the deficit and to various Democratic priorities, including community colleges, historically black colleges and universities, and caps on loan payments.

The bill's greatest impact would fall on the more than 6 million students who rely on Pell grants to finance their education. Pell, launched in 1973, once covered more than two-thirds of total costs at a public university. It now covers about one-third.
The student aid measure was initially framed as a boost to the Pell program. Now it is seen as its salvation. Democratic leaders say that without a massive infusion of cash, the maximum grant could be scaled back by more than half to $2,150 and at least 500,000 students could be dropped from the program.
"So if this legislation did not pass, you would see catastrophic cuts to the Pell grant program, effectively slamming the door shut for hundreds of thousands of students, if not millions, who rely on the Pell grant program to go to school," said Rich Williams, higher education associate for U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups.Collapse )
funny shit by teh_indy
  • lidane

Brave Americans to Send Burnt Bread to D.C. in Order to Make an Incoherent Point

LOL. Just....LOL.

Freepers So Angry They Will Burn Toast At You!

LOL

The latest “put a food item in the mail to Washington, DC in order to send a strongly worded message to whomever” stunt involves … a cooked bread thing! Note that bread does not appear even once in the Constitution, which is a smear on Ron Paul and our other Founding Fathers. This is why only toast can advance the cause of Freedom:

As a gesture to all of the traitors that screwed over the United States of America last night, I propose the following:

Place a piece of bread in your toaster. ‘Cook’ it until it is charred black. Place charred toast in a suitable envelope. Mail said envelope to your representative in DC.

They’ll get the message…


How about this: instead of taking advantage of the Socialist mail service — one that is about to collapse beneath the weight of its 14 bazillion obese pensioners with Cadillac retirement plans — just pop that fucker in the fax.

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Source
  • Current Mood
    amused
' jules

Class out the ass, this one.

Neugebauer Is ‘Baby Killer’ Heckler



Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas) acknowledged in a statement Monday he was the Member who shouted “baby killer” on the floor Sunday night while Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) addressed the chamber.

“Last night was the climax of weeks and months of debate on a health care bill that my constituents fear and do not support. In the heat and emotion of the debate, I exclaimed the phrase ‘it’s a baby killer’ in reference to the agreement reached by the Democratic leadership,” he said. “While I remain heartbroken over the passage of this bill and the tragic consequences it will have for the unborn, I deeply regret that my actions were mistakenly interpreted as a direct reference to Congressman Stupak himself.”

Neugebauer said he apologized to Stupak for the outburst.

“I have apologized to Mr. Stupak and also apologize to my colleagues for the manner in which I expressed my disappointment about the bill. The House Chamber is a place of decorum and respect. The timing and tone of my comment last night was inappropriate,” he said.

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Good News! White Privilege Bastard Declares The End of Racism! Black People Rejoice!

Republicans Demand the Dismantling of the NAACP and The Civil Rights Movements Now that They Are Obsolete. Jesse Jackson Forced To Look for a Real Job. White Americans Will Now Be Able to Use The "N" Word with No Consequences Whatsoever!! (Legal Disclaimer: Results May Vary)

Bennett: Racial Epithet Yelled At Rep. John Lewis Is Proof That ‘Racism In America Is Dead’

On Saturday, conservative anger over the imminent passage of health care reform manifested itself in a series of bigoted exchanges with Democratic members of Congress. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) was spit on by a protester, openly gay Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) was called a “faggot” and Rep. John Lewis (D-GA), a hero of the civil rights movement, was called the n-word. Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) called the incidents “absolutely shocking.” “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,” said Clyburn.

Though leaders of the Republican Party have sought to distance themselves from the outbursts, some conservatives are dismissing the incidents as no big deal. National Review’s Jay Nordlinger posted a letter yesterday claiming that the incidents proved that “Racism in America is dead.” Nordlinger called the argument “thought-provoking”:

As everyone sweats out the final Obamacare tallies, I’m struck by a couple of other stories. In one case, someone reported hearing an anti-black epithet used at a political rally. In another case, dogged police finally arrested the perpetrator of an intolerable crime. The perp is a 16-year-old kid who made a potentially offensive comment on a Wal-Mart overhead speaker. That these things are even remotely newsworthy leads me to one conclusion: Racism in America is dead. We had slavery, then we had Jim Crow — and now we have the occasional public utterance of a bad word. Real racism has been reduced to de minimis levels, while charges of racism seem to increase. I’ll vote for the first politician with the brass to say that “racism” should be dropped from our national dialogue. We’re a good nation, among the least racist on earth . . .
 
On his radio show this morning, conservative talker Bill Bennett endorsed the letter writer’s thesis, saying “I think that’s right”:

BENNETT: I think that’s right. Is there occasional racism, of course. But this country’s been transformed on the issue of race. You talk to young people, they don’t even understand how people could have judged people by race. They just don’t even, it doesn’t even parse. So, you know, what some of the liberal Democrats want to suggest is that Republicans and conservatives are still, you know, they have one, one scenario for this. It’s Mississippi burning and, you know, they’re still there. But the country is not there. Mississippi isn’t Mississippi of Mississippi burning. Transformed society on this issue. And everybody who is honest would admit to that.

Listen here:
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Democracy is Dead! GOP to Take Patriotic Duty for Secession!

In Other News: Obscene Words and Rage Could Be Heard Coming From Lincoln's Tomb. Conservative Scientists Believe That Amazing Spinning Coffin Could Power Up Half of America!

Rep. Steve King floats secession as possible response to health care reform.

Yesterday as the House passed historic health care reform legislation, groups of Tea Party activists were still amassed on Capitol Hill protesting the bill. When word reached them that they had lost their battle, they began singing the national anthem and reciting the pledge of allegiance. “The most important thing to remember,” said Jenny Beth Martin of Tea Party Patriots, “is that the fight for freedom, it never ends!” Reps. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) and Steve King (R-IA) then went out and spoke to the protesters, with King floating the possibility of secession (even though he said they should “hope” it doesn’t come to that):

KING: I just came down here so I could say to you, God bless you. … You are the awesome American people. [...]

If I could start a country with a bunch of people, they’d be the folks who were standing with us the last few days. Let’s hope we don’t have to do that! Let’s beat that other side to a pulp! Let’s take them out. Let’s chase them down. There’s going to be a reckoning!
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jisookimcandela

The Simpsons: Michelle Obama Visits Springfield


On last night's episode, First Lady Michelle Obama made a trip to Springfield to give a pep talk to Lisa Simpson, after learning (by following Lisa's FarmVille-esque blog) that the little feminist was embarrassed by her own intelligence.

After getting high marks on a test, Lisa was classified as "gifted" in front of her peers, and became self-conscious of the fact that her braininess made her an outcast. On her virtual organic gardening blog, Lisa wrote that she didn't want to post a list of garden-friendly snails out of fear of appearing too smart. She received a comment from an anonymous follower saying, "Don't stop achieving."

The commenter, it turns out, was Michelle Obama (not actually voiced by the real First Lady [Angela Bassett]), who showed up at Springfield Elementary to encourage Lisa, and other overachievers, to not be embarrassed by success or intelligence. Then she used her extraordinary arm muscles to open the hatch of her helicopter and fly away.

Source to watch two clips!
Cordy

Ben Affleck launches Eastern Congo Initiative

Ben Affleck is raising awareness to the troubled African nation of Congo.

The 37-year-old actor has launched the Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI), an advocacy and grant-making initiative with the mission of helping the Congolese people support local community-based approaches that create a sustainable and successful society in the long-troubled region.

“The situation in eastern Congo has been neglected for far too long – it is one of the worst humanitarian tragedies in the world,” said Ben, who returned today from a five-day trip to the region. “I brought together this unique collection of partners in order to bring their experience in humanitarian relief and sustainable development to bear as we focus like never before on local solutions to challenges in this region. Right now, the attention paid to this crisis doesn’t match the needs of those affected by it. We will raise that attention level, and work with the extraordinary Congolese people who are making a positive difference in their own communities.”

To get involved, visit EasternCongo.org!

Source

Down and Out in Beautiful Bondi

A rich city council can now legally remove a group of homeless people who have battled in the courts to remain living in the Bondi Pavilion. Matt Khoury spends a day with them as they face an uncertain future.

A metre-high pile of assorted rubbish has rested against the back wall of Bondi Pavilion for a month. It's indicative of a nine-month stalemate between Waverley Council and the people who call the pavilion home.

At midnight tomorrow, when a NSW Supreme Court injunction is lifted, the council can move the rough sleepers along after a desperate journey through the state's justice system. Before that deadline, the group's pro bono barristers will appeal to the High Court to have their clients' right to shelter under the heritage building's awnings heard.

But in a war of attrition, the fractured group of homeless has already come off second best.

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Source
Obama - Pie

A Ticket For Rush: Website Raises Money To Banish Limbaugh



So if you haven't heard, the health care bill has passed. I'll give you a moment to fist pump and say "Suck it, Boehner".... Aaaaand we're back. What you may have forgotten in the midst of all the fist pumps and high fives was that a couple of weeks ago, everyone's favorite conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said that if the Health Care Bill passed, he would move to Costa Rica.

Would you look at that? Bill passed. Time for Limbaugh to live up to his promise. But just in case he backs out, enter "A Ticket For Rush," a website with the sole purpose of accepting $1 donations (through PayPal) to buy Rush a first-class ticket to Costa Rica.

If Rush refuses to accept this generous offer, the money will be donated to Planned Parenthood. And on top of that, if they raise more money than is necessary (or not enough), everything will still go to Planned Parenthood.

So let's make this happen. Not only would Rush be gone, but he may be disappointed with what Costa Rica has to offer: things like, you know, universal health care.

Here's the website again: http://www.aticketforrush.com/

Source

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prophecy

Guise, student loan reform is good and all except...

In Hard Times, Lured Into Trade School and Debt

One fast-growing American industry has become a conspicuous beneficiary of the recession: for-profit colleges and trade schools.
At institutions that train students for careers in areas like health care, computers and food service, enrollments are soaring as people anxious about weak job prospects borrow aggressively to pay tuition that can exceed $30,000 a year.

But the profits have come at substantial taxpayer expense while often delivering dubious benefits to students, according to academics and advocates for greater oversight of financial aid. Critics say many schools exaggerate the value of their degree programs, selling young people on dreams of middle-class wages while setting them up for default on untenable debts, low-wage work and a struggle to avoid poverty. And the schools are harvesting growing federal student aid dollars, including Pell grants awarded to low-income students.

“If these programs keep growing, you’re going to wind up with more and more students who are graduating and can’t find meaningful employment,” said Rafael I. Pardo, a professor at Seattle University School of Law and an expert on educational finance. “They can’t generate income needed to pay back their loans, and they’re going to end up in financial distress.”

For-profit trade schools have long drawn accusations that they overpromise and underdeliver, but the woeful economy has added to the industry’s opportunities along with the risks to students, according to education experts. They say these schools have exploited the recession as a lucrative recruiting device while tapping a larger pool of federal student aid.

Concerned about aggressive marketing practices, the Obama administration is toughening rules that restrict institutions that receive federal student aid from paying their admissions recruiters on the basis of enrollment numbers.

“During a recession, with increased demand for education and more anxiety about the ability to get a job, there is a heightened level of hazard,” said Robert Shireman, a deputy under secretary of education. “There is a lot of Pell grant money out there, and we need to make sure it’s being used effectively.”

The administration’s push has provoked fierce lobbying from the for-profit educational industry, which is seeking to maintain flexibility in the rules.

More at the source.

I dunno guys, more access to Pell grants would be awesome, but regulation of where those grants actually end up is needed. Especially since these exploiting fuckers can take advantage of hard-working students.
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Brave Americans Using Fear, Vandalism, Intimidation, and Anger To Take Back Nation!

Police Actually Surprised That Vandal Spelled "DORKS" Correctly! Evidence Suggest an Intelligent Tea Bagger!

Democratic Offices Vandalized In Days Surrounding Health Care Vote

Rhetoric surrounding the health care debate has often been very violent, with Rep. Steve King (R-IA) just yesterday promising to “beat that other side to a pulp” and at least one Tea Party sign threatening gun violence if health care reform passes.

In recent days, several Democratic offices around the nation have also been vandalized. Although it’s unclear who the perpetrators are, all the incidents took place shortly before or after the House’s vote on health care yesterday:
The glass front door of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ (D-AZ) Tuscon office was “smashed out” a “few hours after she voted in favor of health care reform.” Giffords’ spokesman C.J. Karamargin “said it was unclear if the glass had been shot out with a kind of pellet gun, if it had been kicked or smashed with an object. The door has been covered with plywood.”

– On the morning of March 19, someone threw a brick through the front window of Rep. Louise Slaughter’s (D-NY) Niagara Falls office. Monroe County Democratic Committee officials also said that a brick shattered the glass doors at their party’s headquarters in Rochester, NY on Saturday or Sunday.
In a more confusing incident, someone spray-painted the word “DORKS” on the window of the Knox County Democratic Headquarters in Mount Vernon, OH. ThinkProgress spoke to Jim Zak, Democratic Party chairman, who said that this morning, he received a call about the vandalism, which seems to have happened sometime after midnight last night. He said that he has “no idea who would have done it,” but noted that “things are running pretty high here in Knox County, as far as the health care reform bill was concerned.”

At the Code Red protest this weekend, Tea Party activists also spat on a lawmaker and shouted racist and homophobic slurs at others.

Vandalism
normal

Canada To Welcome Their Newest Liberator!

Canadians are so Hospitable That They Are Willing to Provide Free Housing and Meals, and Free Medical Care for Many Years in an "Special Facility" After Her Hateful Rhetoric Real American Speech!

Canadian university to Ann Coulter: Your hateful rhetoric won’t fly here, so watch your mouth when you visit.

Far-right pundit Ann Coulter will be in Canada this week for “a trio of speaking engagements,” including one at the University of Ottawa. In advance of her visit, a senior official at the school sent Coulter a letter warning her to use “restraint, respect and consideration” in her remarks and telling her to review the country’s hate speech and defamation laws. From the letter:
I would, however, like to inform you, or perhaps remind you, that our domestic laws, both provincial and federal, delineate freedom of expression (or “free speech”) in a manner that is somewhat different than the approach taken in the United States. I therefore encourage you to educate yourself, if need be, as to what is acceptable in Canada and to do so before your planned visit here.

You will realize that Canadian law puts reasonable limits on the freedom of expression. For example, promoting hatred against any identifiable group would not only be considered inappropriate, but could in fact lead to criminal charges. Outside of the criminal realm, Canadian defamation laws also limit freedom of expression and may differ somewhat from those to which you are accustomed. I therefore ask you, while you are a guest on our campus, to weigh your words with respect and civility in mind.
In the past, Coulter has bashed Canada, saying, “They’d better hope the United States doesn’t roll over one night and crush them. They are lucky we allow them to exist on the same continent.” In response to the letter, Coulter writes, “I was hoping for a fruit basket, not a threat to prosecute.”
naruto || unpleased
  • brecho

women's history month with brecho: day twenty-two

Ireland: Abortion Limits Violate Human Rights



(Dublin, January 28, 2010) - The Irish government actively seeks to restrict access to abortion services and information both within Ireland and for its residents seeking care abroad, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.

The 57-page report, "A State of Isolation: Access to Abortion for Women in Ireland," details how women struggle to overcome the financial, logistical, physical, and emotional burdens imposed by restrictive laws and policies that force them to seek care abroad, without support from the state. Every year thousands of women and girls travel from Ireland to other European countries for abortions.
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fox-alterreality

GOP Placed 'Wanted' Fliers On House Dem Seats, Warning About '94 Repeat


House Democrats on Sunday were greeted with a particularly partisan, somewhat juvenile sight when they took their seats inside the chamber.

On several of their chairs were fliers warning them that if they happened to pass health care reform that night -- which they did -- it would result in a repeat of the 1994 midterm election, which became known as the Republican Revolution.

"IN 1993 THEY VOTED YES. A YOUNG PRESIDENT TOLD THEM 'DON'T WORRY, IT'LL BE OKAY,'" the flier read, substituting in bold red font for individual words. "34 INCUMBENTS DEFEATED, 54 SEATS LOST."

Pictured on the flier are the head shots of 25 of those members in a "wanted" style framing -- the margin of electoral defeat they suffered in '94 under their name.

A Democratic aide passed on the literature to the Huffington Post, relaying that Republicans had put them on some seats but "not all."

The Washington Post first reported on the fliers but did not obtain a copy.

The analogy that the GOP is trying to draw, of course, is imprecise. Democrats in 1993 didn't vote "yes" on a health care bill nor did a health care bill eventually pass under the Clinton administration.

In 1993, the tough vote facing Democrats was a budget bill to which Clinton had, indeed, staked much of his reputation. The legislation did, in the end, cost some lawmakers their seats. But at least one, upon reflection, expressed no regret. Writing in the Washington Post this past week, Rep. Marjorie Margolies urged her fellow party members to support health care legislation regardless the consequences. Margolies was lost re-election to her Pennsylvania House seat after one term.

"You will be assailed no matter how you vote this week," she wrote. "And this job isn't supposed to be easy. So cast the vote that you won't regret in 18 years."


floorfile -

Source

I was wondering what the whole business at the beginning of the session was about flyers.....the Chairman at the time made mention of the rules which prohibit flyers without putting the author's/distributor's name on them.  Guess this is why!  Stay klassy,  GOP! 

The most dangerous drug isn't meow meow. It isn't even alcohol . . .

The Simpsons, "Pranks and Greens" DS...

Image by playerx via Flickr

Newspapers are the biggest threat to the nation's mental wellbeing

I'm a lightweight; always have been. I didn't get properly drunk until I was 25, on a night out which culminated in a spectacular public vomiting in a Chinese restaurant. Ever wondered what the clatter of 60 pairs of chopsticks being simultaneously dropped in disgust might sound like? Don't ask me. I can't remember. I was too busy bitterly coughing what remained of my guts all over the carpet.

Not a big drinker, then. Like virtually every other member of my generation, I smoked dope throughout my early 20s. It prevented me from getting bored, but also prevented me from achieving much. When you're content to blow an entire fortnight basking on your sofa like a woozy sea lion, playing Super Bomberman, eating Minstrels and sniggering at Alastair Stewart's bombastic voiceover on Police Camera Action! there's not much impetus to push yourself. Marijuana detaches you from the world, like a big pause button. The moment I stopped smoking it I started actually getting stuff done. I still sit on my sofa playing videogames, necking sweets and laughing at the telly, but these days if I have to leave my cocoon and pop to the corner shop to buy a pint of milk before they close, it's a minor inconvenience rather than a protracted mission to Mars. That was the worst thing about being stoned: there came an inevitable point every evening where you'd find yourself shuffling around a massively overlit local convenience store feeling alien and jittery. Brrr. No thanks.

I tried other things, only to discover they weren't for me. LSD, for instance, definitely isn't my bag. Call me traditional, but if I glance at a wall and before my very eyes it suddenly starts smearing and sliding around like oil on water, my initial reaction is not to be amused or amazed, but alarmed about the structural integrity of the building. My most benign lysergic experience consisted of an hour-long stroll around an incredibly verdant, sun-drenched meadow, watching the names of famous sportsmen appear before me in gigantic 3D letters carved from fiery gold. Eventually someone passed me a cup of tea and the spell was broken: there I was, sitting in a student halls of residence, watching late-night golf on BBC2 on a tiny black-and-white TV. From that point on it was like being trapped in a David Lynch film that lasted for eight hours and was set in Streatham. Once again: Brrr. No thanks.

These days I'm sickeningly lily- livered, by choice rather than necessity. I don't smoke, I drink only occasionally, and I'd sooner saw my own feet off than touch anything harder than a double espresso. I don't want to get out of my head: that's where I live.

In summary: if I've learned anything, it's that I don't much care for mood-altering substances. But I'm not afraid of them either. With one exception.
 
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Source: Charlie Brooker @ The Guardian
winslowned

Gingrich Walks Back Civil Rights Comments



The Washington Post’s Dan Balz yesterday quoted Newt Gingrich, the former Republican House Speaker from Georgia, warning that Obama’s support for sweeping health care reform would plague Democrats for decades, much as Lyndon Johnson’s signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 jostled the party and led to the entrenchment of Southern Republicans that we still have today.

“‘They will have destroyed their party much as Lyndon Johnson shattered the Democratic Party for 40 years’ with the enactment of civil rights legislation in the 1960s,” Balz wrote, quoting Gingrich.

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SOURCE

The Washington Post Op-Ed piece about it isHERE


Why on earth would Newt use that analogy???
The Gang

Historic Health Care Vote Leaves Women Feeling Shortchanged

By Jen Nedeau

Fully understanding the importance of health care for all Americans, the author, who manages the WMC Not Under the Bus campaign, describes a sense of betrayal shared by many—and how to move forward.

“So this isn’t radical reform.  But it is major reform.  This legislation will not fix everything that ails our health care system.  But it moves us decisively in the right direction.  This is what change looks like.”—President Obama

So this is what change looks like? Throwing women’s rights under the bus in exchange for health care?

Something about this doesn’t feel like change. Something about this feels all too familiar. Once again, women’s rights are being used as a bargaining chip for political gain. Once again, the right to choose is not left in the hands of women, but left in the hands of male politicians who will never be faced with an unwanted pregnancy.

Yes, it is true that Speaker Nancy Pelosi worked incredibly hard to get the votes to pass the bill that now makes it illegal for insurance companies to discriminate against women with higher premiums than men or deny coverage to women who have had Caesarean sections or survived domestic violence.

Yes, it is true that bill will make health care more accessible for women and families across America by controlling costs and offering a public marketplace where those without insurance can buy their own affordable coverage.

However, these very important advancements cannot disguise two major attacks on women’s choice.

The first attack was passing a bill that contained Ben Nelson’s Manager’s Amendment.

The second attack is the Executive Order from the White House reaffirming the Hyde Amendment ban on federal funding of abortion and effectively extending it beyond its current application. In the Daily Beast, Dana Goldstein  discusses how the “executive order enshrined the Hyde Amendment and expanded its reach into the new private insurance exchanges created by the health-care bill.”

At the end of the day, more than 30 million uninsured American’s can now have access to health reform, but it is abundantly clear women’s health is not considered a priority.

If you are a pro-choice advocate, this is not the change we hoped to see, particularly from a Democratic President and Democratic Majority Congress.

The bill that was passed contains language that has the potential to create a nation completely divided by access to abortion.  With the Nelson language intact, it is possible for abortion rights to be completely stripped from the hands of low-income women, who are disproportionately non-white, by the predominantly male-led state legislatures.

According to the Guttmacher Institute , “nearly half of all pregnancies to American women are unintended and four in 10 of these end in abortion.” Guttmacher also reports that unintended pregnancies have increased by 29 percent among poor women while decreasing 20 percent among higher-income women.

As the bill stands at this point, if a state opts out of abortion coverage in the exchange, women who cannot afford a private insurance plan would have few viable options for seeking access to abortion. That means reproductive choice is no longer left with women individually, but given to the state. After last night’s historic vote, it may feel like the health care reform battle is over. But for millions of women across America, it has really just begun.

Today CREDO launched an action taking a firm stand against anti-choice Democrats who betrayed women across America saying, “It’s time for pro-choice donors and members of Congress to stop funneling money to the anti-choice candidates via the DCCC.”

You can sign CREDO’s petition and take the momentum of ”Yes We Can” pass health care to “Yes We Can” repeal the Hyde Amendment.

It is time to finally give women across America—not just those who can afford private health care, but every woman—a real choice when it comes to their body, their destiny and their future.

Source

"Baby killer" shouter steps forward, highlights internal GOP dilemma

Last night, as the clock approached midnight and the long House debate on health care reform was finally winding down, Rep. Bart Stupak stepped to the microphone on the floor of the chamber to deliver his remarks. As the famously anti-abortion congressman was denouncing a measure to kill the deal he'd struck earlier in the day for President Obama to issue an executive order reiterating that no federal funds would pay for abortions, a voice suddenly shouted "Baby killer!" from the GOP side of the House floor.


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(source)

Immature, butthurt, crybaby, etc...etc..etc..
:(, boyd, teen wolf

Google ends 4 years of censoring the Web for China

SAN FRANCISCO – Google Inc. stopped censoring the Internet for China by shifting its search engine off the mainland Monday but said it will maintain other operations in the country. The maneuver attempts to balance Google's disdain for China's Internet rules with the company's desire to profit from an explosively growing market.

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SOURCE
From Google
The Gang

Despite public row, Israelis' view of Obama improves

By SHEERA FRENKEL

McClatchy Newspapers


JERUSALEM --
After last week's public row with Washington over Israel's decision to build new Jewish dwellings in disputed East Jerusalem, many Israelis are re-evaluating the relationship between the Jewish state and its No. 1 foreign ally.

Surprisingly, President Barack Obama's popularity in Israel is on the rise, and the harsh criticism of Israel's actions by his top aides - as an "insult" and "slap in the face" during a visit by Vice President Joe Biden - may have strengthened the trend.

A new poll published in Haaretz, the left-of-center Hebrew daily newspaper, found that 69 percent of Israelis think that Obama's treatment of Israel is "friendly and fair," a sea change from a similar poll last June in The Jerusalem Post, a right-of-center English daily, which found that only 6 percent of Israelis saw Obama as "pro-Israel."

To judge from random interviews at Jerusalem's Mahne Yehuda outdoor market, the new poll tapped a genuine shift in sentiment,

Roni Richtman, a 21-year-old student at Jerusalem's Hebrew University, told McClatchy Newspapers he appreciated the "firm but understanding" manner in which the Americans handled the dispute.

"There was a fear here that Obama would be radical. He proved this week that although he doesn't agree with (Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu he still respects us and sees our view," Richtman said. Had Biden left the country entirely or issued a stronger condemnation, Israelis would have felt "like small children being scolded," he said.

"We are a small country with a big ego. We are used to pro-Israeli American administrations. I think Obama did very well and gained our trust," he said.

Sitting with his friends outside a bustling cafe, Levi Raz, 33, said Israelis' attitudes toward Obama "have changed because he isn't the bad guy everyone told us he would be." He noted that in the middle of the row, Israeli newspapers published "nice photos" of Obama. "That's a real sign you've made it in Israel," he said.

The market, or souk as it's called locally, has a history as a sounding board for the Israeli public. No Israeli elected official has campaigned in recent years without paying homage to the blue-collar workers flogging their crates of tomatoes and peppers, or won an election without walking out of the market carrying its well-known tins of olives and spices.
 

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THUS SAYETH THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD!

Saint Beck

Glenn Beck, on his radio show, offered a ...sentiment in addressing President Obama and Democrats who supported the bill: "Our master is common sense and GOD. I don't think right now you have either one on your side."

But Beck said he sees an upside - that the tea parties and other anti-big government movements are now "a snowball that cannot be stopped. The American people have long fuses. You can walk on us, lie to us and cheat us for a long time. But our [breaking point] was yesterday."

The choice in the elections this fall, he said, is clear: "Are you an American or are you a mouse? Are you an American or a European?

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/03/22/2010-03-22_three_angry_men_limbaugh_beck_gambling_come_out_firing_after_health_care_bill_pa.html#ixzz0ixQsYIeG

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TRANSLATION: "Get farther right with God, liberals, or you'll be facing snowballs with long fuses that are broken and stepped on."

(I had trouble with the rest of it because I wasn't sure whether I'm an American mouse or European one. Mixed metaphors confuse me... anyway, we could stand here and talk until the cows turn blue... or till blue dogs gather no moss.)
Natraja dancing

Indian state asks Coca-Cola to pay $47m compensation

By Sanjoy Majumder
BBC News, Delhi

Coca-Cola has been asked to pay $47m (£31.2m) in compensation for alleged environmental damage caused at a bottling plant in southern Indian.

The plant, one of its largest in India, was forced to close in 2005 after activists and residents protested.


The company insists the charges against it are unfounded.

But the state of Kerala's Communist-run government has accepted the findings of an investigation into the allegations about the Palakkad district plant.

It says Coca-Cola must pay up for the damage it has allegedly caused.

The company is accused of depleting the groundwater in the area, as well as damaging farmland and the local environment, by dumping waste between the years 1999 and 2004.

But a statement by Coca-Cola's office in India disputes the findings, saying that they needed to be proved in the courts.

It says that scientific investigations carried out by the government and other agencies have determined that the plant had not caused any environmental damage.

The plant was shut five years ago after massive nationwide protests against the company.

source
Flesh

Keep us in power and we'll give you broadband? :D?

Gordon Brown has said Labour plans to give every home in the UK access to super-fast broadband.

In a speech, the prime minister called high-speed web access "the electricity of the digital age" which "must be for all - not just for some".


The Conservatives say they have made a similar pledge and have attacked a £6-a-year landline levy planned by Labour.

The PM also promised to create a single website bringing together all government and public sector services. The "MyGov" portal will allow people to manage pensions and benefits, pay council tax, apply for school places and jobs, and book doctors' appointments online.

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BBC

Labour and Conservatives are almost exactly the same, more news at eleven.
Natraja dancing

The Baba Chronicles

Forget Madonna. Our sadhus are firmly living in the material world. SHANTANU GUHA RAY at the Kumbh

AN ESTIMATED 1,40,000 Naga sadhus crowd the Juna Akhara on the banks of the Ganges at Haridwar and their lives are quite the party circuit.Sitting close to a flower-framed urn holding currency notes donated to his spiritual leader, Swami Ananda Giri says there’s really no tradition he’s breaking. He’s been in the sect for more than a decade but has never smeared himself with ash and has always worn flowing, silky saffron robes. He prefers an old Nokia 1100 but has colleagues who have Blackberry handsets and laptops with Internet cards. Some even have iPods connected to fancy speakers.

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Source

SHIVA JI WOULD NOT APPROVE OF THIS FUCKERY >>:( These people disgrace the already heavily tainted name of 'Baba'.
normal

Emergency News: The Liburals Have an Army of Mimes and Clownminators T-800 Series!!

Bodyguards Feared for Their Lives. Mimes Had "Mime Guns"! One Bodyguard Was Trapped and Crushed Inside an Invisible Box. Medical Examiner Wont Have Autopsy Ready for Weeks...



Graphic Approximation of The Assailants: Look at their Cold and Silent Eyes, Those Monsters!

Anti-Immigrant Leader’s Bodyguard Reportedly Assaulted Mimes Who Were Blowing ‘Hateful Whistles’ At DC Rally

Yesterday, approximately 200,000 people gathered at the National Mall to show their support of comprehensive immigration reform. Roy Beck, director of the immigration restrictionist group, NumbersUSA, decided to add himself to the mix and report on the event via a live stream that was available on the group’s website. According to Anne Manetas of NumbersUSA, a group of female mimes threatened Beck and his bodyguards with “constant efforts at crushing physical intimidation” instigated by “blowing hateful whistles” and waving balloons. Watch NumbersUSA’s video of the hateful mimes:

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