May 18th, 2010

Precure WTF?!

California Govenor Canditate Proposes Island for Pedobears

It's California governor's race time, so grab your popcorn. Previously unheard of gubernatorial candidate Douglas Hughes has a utopian planning vision for the male sex offenders of California. Under his plan, male "convicted pedophiles" would have three choices: leave California forever, stay in prison for the rest of their lives, or move to self-sustaining "Pedophile Island." That's the island currently known as Santa Rosa Island, the second largest of the Channel Islands and part of Channel Islands National Park. According to Hughes, "The maintenance of Santa Rosa Island is a waste of taxpayer’s money.  Most of the visitors who go there are Park Rangers or environmentalists, not the general public. Here's how it'll work:

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While pedophiles are Hughes' big thing, there are other points to his platform. Here he is on oil:
All oil sites must be in a “Ready” condition at all times and kept primed at all times.  If we are cut off from the World Oil supply; we must be ready!  All possible oil sites must be drilled and made ready.  For this the land-owners should be given a percentage of the take.  All land owners that will be affected by oil smells or unsightly wells with heavy traffic or pipelines, should be compensated.
And on drugs:
As Governor, I will enforce a program that gives addicts three choices:
1. To buy drugs from the state for ½ price of the street price.
2. Buy drugs from the street at full price.
3. Accept rehabilitation.


Robots marrying people, robots seeking equal rights...

Eyes flashing, robot conducts wedding in Tokyo (via Associated Press)

TOKYO — Almost everyone stood when the bride walked down the aisle in her white gown, but not the wedding conductor, because she was bolted to her chair. The nuptials at this ceremony were led by "I-Fairy," a 4-foot (1.5-meter) tall seated robot with flashing eyes and plastic pigtails. Sunday's wedding was the first time a marriage had been led by a robot, according to manufacturer Kokoro Co."Please lift the bride's veil," the robot said in a tinny voice, waving its arms in the air as the newlyweds kissed in front of about 50 guests.

The wedding took place at a restaurant in Hibiya Park in central Tokyo, where the I-Fairy wore a wreath of flowers and directed a rooftop ceremony. Wires led out from beneath it to a black curtain a few feet (meters) away, where a man crouched and clicked commands into a computer. Japan has one of the most advanced robotics industries in the world, with the government actively supporting the field for future growth. Industrial models in factories are now standard, but recently Japanese companies are making a push to inject robots into everyday life.
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A bit older but relevant...
Robots could demand legal rights (via BBC News)

Robots could one day demand the same citizen's rights as humans, according to a study by the British government. If granted, countries would be obliged to provide social benefits including housing and even "robo-healthcare", the report says. The predictions are contained in nearly 250 papers that look ahead at developments over the next 50 years.

Other papers, or "scans", examine the future of space flight and methods to dramatically lengthen life spans. "We're not in the business of predicting the future, but we do need to explore the broadest range of different possibilities to help ensure government is prepared in the long-term and considers issues across the spectrum in its planning," said Sir David King, the government's chief scientific adviser.

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Also read counterpoint from the Times

This is my Tuesday gift to you all, just because I love you.
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Hamas destroys dozens of homes in southern Gaza

RAFAH, Gaza Strip: Hamas police wielding clubs beat and pushed residents out of dozens of homes in the southern Gaza town of Rafah on Sunday before knocking the buildings down with bulldozers, residents said.

Gaza's militant Hamas rulers said the homes were built illegally on government land. Newly homeless residents were furious over Palestinians on bulldozers razing Palestinian homes.

For years, Palestinians have criticized Israel for destroying houses, mostly because they were built without permits issued by the military. Now, Rafah residents complained, their own government, run by the Islamic militant Hamas that seized power in Gaza in July 2007, has done the same.

"They promised reform and change — instead they've destroyed our homes," shouted Miasar Gan, a 54-year-old woman. Gan said she and her husband had nowhere else to go.

"I found my mattress, and that's where I'll be sitting," she said, standing next to the concrete chunks — all that was left of her house.

Her neighbor, Nazira Abu Jara, 56, said policewomen wearing face veils typical of conservative Muslim women beat her with clubs until she fled her house with her husband and two children. "Neighbors help us get by with charity. We can't afford to build again," Abu Jara said.

Others picked through rubble to retrieve dusty clothing and mangled furniture.

Residents said between 30 and 40 homes were torn down, ranging from concrete structures to tin shacks. They did not know how many people were affected. Hamas officials did not allow reporters into the area until the demolition was over.

Residents said more demolitions in the area were expected Monday.

Even if they are allowed to rebuild, Israel does not allow most building materials into the territory it has blockaded since Hamas seized power. The newly homeless residents are unlikely to be able to afford the steep black market prices for concrete, steel and wood. Some of the families cannot afford rent.

Rafah's mayor, Issa Nashar, promised alternative housing.

Gaza's housing minister Yousef Al-Mansi said he had no information about such housing.

Akuma River

The major things on Obama's plate

New START Treaty Submitted To Congress
Today (May 18, 2010)

In April, Pres. Obama and Russian Pres. Medvedev signed a new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) that will limit long-range nuclear weapons. Today, Sec. of State Hillary Clinton, Defense Sec. Robert Gates and Jt. Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Michael Mullen will discuss the treaty at a Senate Foreign Relations Cmte hearing. This begins the process of ratifying the treaty, which would replace the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty and the 2002 Moscow Treaty.
Hearing Begins at 10am on
Signing Ceremony (From April)
Nuclear Posture Review (From April)

C-SPAN Source wants to bring the lulz.

Scenarios: Obama headed for few more wins in Congress in 2010
Thomas Ferraro
Mon May 17, 2010 2:03pm EDT

(Reuters) - President Barack Obama seems to be on the brink of winning passage of a landmark crackdown on Wall Street, and confirmation of a second U.S. Supreme Court nominee.

But Obama is unlikely to score many other major victories on Capitol Hill before the November election determines if his fellow Democrats will retain control of Congress.
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START talks are beginning today at 10am Eastern. Here is a State Department briefing from yesterday on the START Treaty and the new Iran nuke deal with Turkey.

The Financial Regulation Reformation bill is in it's last building moments. Reid asked for Cloture on Monday so the vote will be soon this week. Perhaps today?

Elena Kagan's hearings are supposed to start soon too. I heard sometime this month?

So what do you guys think?

P.S. C-SPAN will be covering the big primaries tonight.

Michelle Obama's "Nude" Gown Sparks Controversy

When you hear the word "nude," what do you picture?

In fashion, it's a common description of the shade a little darker than champagne, lighter than sand and perhaps with a hint of blush or peach.

But when Michelle Obama wore, in the words of designer Naeem Khan, a "sterling-silver sequin, abstract floral, nude strapless gown" to a state dinner at the White House - and it was reported as such - that sparked questions about the definition of nude and its relation, if any, to the wearer's skin colour.

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Calif. penal code pertaining to immigration similar to Ariz.'s SB 1070

The Los Angeles City Council's vote to boycott Arizona caused more consternation than anything else. L.A. City Council members voted an overwhelming 13-1 to terminate any city contracts with Arizona (worth about $7.7 million) as did other American cities who have considered resolutions to protest the Arizona law or seek boycotts. Among these cities are San Francisco and St. Paul, Minn.

The lone dissenter on the council, Republican Greig Smith, said in an e-mail statement:
"The Hahn motion is not in the economic best interests of the City of Los Angeles. I have always opposed using the Los Angeles City Council to weigh in on non-related social issues that are not within the purview of Los Angeles. I voted no on the motion to boycott Arizona."
Unfortunately, Mr. Smith's thinking did not find its way to the United Nations. The international body, that recognizes genocidal tyrants and enables them to remain in power, weighed in on the debate, saying, "The law may lead to detaining and subjecting to interrogation persons primarily on the basis of their perceived ethnic characteristics."
 "I cannot go to Arizona today without a passport," Los Angeles Councilman Ed Reyes, a Democrat, said before the vote. "If I come across an officer who's had a bad day and feels the picture on my ID is not me, I could be summarily deported -- no questions asked. That is not American."
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Will they also now boycott their own state?
cloak, capas, student, praxe

Portugal's President Ratifies Gay Marriage Law

Portugal's conservative president announced Monday he is reluctantly ratifying a law allowing gay marriage, making the predominantly Catholic country the sixth in Europe to let same-sex couples wed.

President Anibal Cavaco Silva said he would not veto the bill because majority liberal lawmakers would only overturn his decision. The country must focus instead on battling a crippling economic crisis that has increased unemployment and deepened poverty, he said.

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Like most people, it's stupid that he was obviously not happy with this law, but it's good news :)

Orly Taitz - Birther....of Pancakes

Orly Taitz, the queen bee of the birther movement, sounds distraught. “I’m going through hell,” she says. The California dentist-lawyer had called to tell me about what she says is a campaign to scare her family so that she’ll abandon her quest to become California’s next Secretary of State. She says she’s endured death threats and an attempt to tamper with her car. But this time, she says, her opponents have gone too far. The final straw? An elaborate oil painting of a nude Taitz, legs splayed, giving birth to… a pancake.Collapse )


Oh. My. God.  I can't even.  Orly, your existence is such a beacon in my life, like a majestic rabid unicorn.

Canadian life expectancy longer than that of Americans, health care may be a factor.

Source should be forced to apologize for its dumb headline:

NEW YORK - Canadians live about three years longer and are healthier than Americans, and the lack of universal health care in the United States may be a factor, researchers say.

In a study published in BioMed Central's journal Population Health Metrics they said Canadians can expect to live until 79.7 years of age, versus 77.2 years for Americans.

A healthy 19-year-old Canadian can expect to have 52 more years of perfect health versus 49.3 more years for Americans.

"Canada and the U.S. share a common border and enjoy very similar standards of living, yet life expectancy in Canada is higher than in the U.S.," said David Feeny, of the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland, Oregon, and a co-author of the study.

"There are two distinct potential explanations for the gap: differences in access to health care and in the prevalence of poverty."

Canadians have a universal healthcare service, which is free at the point of care, whereas Americans' access to health insurance is usually based on employment, income through Medicaid, or age through Medicare, and not universal, according to the study.

Healthcare expenditures also have been higher in the United States than in Canada since the 1970s.

The findings are based on telephone interviews of 8,688 white Canadians and Americans, to account for the impact of slavery and racial disparities on health.

The interviews were conducted in 2002 and 2003 during the first joint survey by Statistics Canada and the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics to provide fully comparable data.

"This data was very high quality, consistent and comparable," Feeny said.

Researchers may try to conduct another survey to update new developments in light of the recent healthcare reform measures in the United States, he added.

Argentina makes appeal for Falklands talks

MADRID — Argentine President Cristina Kirchner used an EU-Latin America summit Tuesday to call for a resumption of talks between Buenos Aires and London over the disputed Falklands Islands.

"I would like to ask, on behalf of my country and the countries of Latin America... please reopen our negotiations over the sovereignty of the Malvinas," Kirchner said in a speech at the opening ceremony of the Madrid summit.

Argentina and Britain went to war in 1982 over the Falklands, a remote archipelago lying some 280 miles off Argentina's coast which are known in the Spanish-speaking world as Las Malvinas.

Britain regained control of the islands but they remain a bone of contention, and Argentina was outraged when oil exploration began there in late February.

Tensions rose further on May 6 when British firm Rockhopper announced a first discovery of crude oil in a well off the islands.

Referring to the 1982 war, Kirchner said her government should not be blamed for "what happened during military dictatorships."

"We are a peaceful country," she said.

New prime minister, David Cameron, did not attend the EU-Latin America summit, where London was represented by Foreign Minister William Hague.

In apparent response to Kirchner's comments, Britain later Tuesday reiterated its principle of "self-determination" for the Falklands.

"There cannot be negotiation on sovereignty unless and until the Falkland Islanders so wish," Minister of State for Latin America Jeremy Browne said in a statement.

"The Lisbon Treaty clearly reaffirms the EU position that the Falkland Islands is an overseas Territory of the United Kingdom.

"While we disagree with Argentina over the Falkland Islands, we have a close and productive relationship on a range of other issues, including on economic issues in the G20 and on climate change, sustainable development and counter-proliferation."

Britain last week rebuffed a call by Kirchner to Cameron to halt all oil exploration in the waters around the Falklands.

Earlier this month South American leaders endorsed the Argentine position at a summit by the 12-nation Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), charging that the oil exploration was being "illegally carried out."


LOLOLOLOLOLOL Glenn Beck Hits 2010 Ratings LOW

Glenn Beck has hit a new low for the year -- literally.

Beck's Fox News program saw its worst ratings of 2010 Friday, averaging just 1.776 million total viewers. Of course, that's more than his competitors -- MSNBC's "Hardball" (528,000), CNN's "Situation Room" (481,000) and HLN's "Showbiz Tonight" (197,000) -- combined, but it represents a continuation of a trend that began last month.

For the month of April, Glenn Beck suffered his first year-over-year decline since joining Fox News in January 2009, declining 7% in total viewers and 6% in the demo compared to April 2009. Moreover, Beck shed 28% of his audience between January and April in both total viewers and the demo.

Friday's program was Beck's fifth worst since joining Fox News.

Politicususa's Jason Easley notes that Friday's total was "50% off of [Beck's] peak audience of 3.4 million" total viewers.

Beasley also writes that Beck is losing viewers because he sees himself as a political force more than an entertainer:

The root of the problem remains Glenn Beck himself. Beck fancies himself to be a political leader now, not an entertainer. On his radio show on April 20, Beck said, "When we were, and I've never told this story before, when we were starting the TV show, there were things that I did that I wouldn't do now because I had to be more of an entertainer to get people to go what is this show at five o'clock? I never said anything I didn't believe, but I may have said things in an entertaining fashion." The problem is that viewers don't seem to like the new serious Glenn Beck.

This, however, directly contradicts a statement Beck gave to Forbes in April.

"I could give a flying crap about the political process," he told the magazine. "We're an entertainment company."

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Police admired Barry Cooper when he lied to put drug dealers in prison. Then he flipped the game on them.

Barry Cooper should know better than anyone that you don’t mess with the police. He was once a cop, and a dirty one at that. But for the past three years, this former narcotics officer has been irritating the hell out of law enforcement, and he's been steadily raising the stakes, damn the consequences.

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interlac k
  • kynn

Accepted to Berkeley but can't get financial aid: one undocumented student's story

Girl who came to U.S. illegally can't get loans

Posted: 05/16/2010 09:44:47 PM PDT

FONTANA - Gladys Castro has all the numbers needed to get into UC Berkeley - except one.

Image and video hosting by TinyPicAlthough the 17-year-old Kaiser High School senior carries a 4.09 grade-point average and has been accepted to the university, she cannot apply for government loans because she's an illegal immigrant and doesn't have a Social Security number.

"I don't know how I'm going to pay for school," she said. "All I want is a chance."

Castro said less than a year ago, one Kaiser High administrator refused to sign a petition supporting federal college aid for illegal immigrants, supposedly saying that they don't deserve to go to American universities.

"I just started crying," Castro said.

Some say Castro has spent her chance on a high school diploma.

"California has already dumped $100,000 in free education (on her)," said Robert Rector, a senior research fellow at the Washington, D.C.-based Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. "If you want to be tough about it, you can ask for it to be repaid."

Castro smiles wide and talks fast when asked about her plans to major in political science at the campus she has visited three times.

But the reality of having to pay more than $30,000 in fees per academic year often quenches her enthusiasm to the point of tears, leaving her to ponder a future without a college degree.

When she was 8 years old, her family fled the crime and violence of their hometown in Jalisco, Mexico.

Two of her relatives were kidnapped and murdered, and when the family stopped at her uncle's house in Tijuana before illegally entering the United States, he warned them not to go near the windows because of the frequent shootings in the neighborhood.

Castro cannot forget the stories told by childhood friends in Mexico, who spoke of the dead bodies they would see in cars after a bloody street battle.

"It's not something a child should have to see," she said.

On her first day of school in the U.S., Castro's third-grade class made Native American dreamcatchers, sacred ornaments believed to allow only positive dreams to enter one who is sleeping.

She quickly tested out of an English-learners class.

Her schedule in high school has been laden with advanced placement coursework.

Castro joined the Army Junior ROTC in 2007. She's been a member of the National Honor Society and a president of the Advanced Biology Club.

And, until recently, hardly anyone at the school knew she was undocumented.

An evangelical Christian, Castro would ask the campus Christian club to pray for her situation, the request couched in vague terms so as not to let on about her status.

Her mother works in a barber shop, and her father is a house painter struggling to find employment. A year of Berkeley costs more than what the family makes annually, Castro said.

"I know there is a God, and I know he's my father, and he loves me, and I know he has a great plan for me," she said. "He's opening doors for me that I can't open by myself."

Some undocumented students have already walked through the doors of American colleges.

Sergio Hernandez's family came to the country illegally when he was 2 years old.

Now 23, Hernandez is set to graduate from Cal Poly Pomona with a bachelor's degree in political science. He plans to pursue a master's degree in higher education.

Hernandez said Castro faces a tough but manageable road. "I understand how she's feeling, because she feels like her dreams are closed, and she's not empowered," he said. Hernandez, a former class president at Rosemead High School who has either joined, led or started numerous Latino associations at Cal Poly, said he has been able to pay for his school because of AB540, a law passed in 2001 that allows illegal immigrants who graduate from California high schools to pay in-state tuition at a state college or university.

His father owns a landscaping business and financially assists Hernandez, who also works at the school's Cesar E. Chavez Center for Higher Education.

Hernandez in his first year of school used private scholarships to fund his studies. He said such scholarships are great ways for undocumented students to get the financial aid they seek to attend college.

And he, like Castro, supports the federal Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, also known as the Dream Act, that is working its way through Congress.

The bill would aid about 65,000 illegal immigrants each year who graduate from high school and meet other requirements.

Under the bill, illegal immigrants who entered the U.S. under 16 years of age and have lived here more than five years, graduated from high school and can demonstrate good moral character may apply for conditional legal status.

They would be allowed to stay in the country for six years under such status.

Students can convert their conditional status to permanent residency by graduating from a two-year college, studying at least two years toward a bachelor's degree or serving in the military at least two years.

Students receive green cards and could apply for citizenship, if the conditions of the probationary period are met.

"I've been fighting for the Dream Act ever since it was introduced," Hernandez said.

Castro has worked with Latino activist groups such as the left-wing Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles to gain support for the proposal.

"A lot of people see us as criminals," she said. "I don't see myself as a criminal. How am I a criminal at 8 years old, when I had no control over my life?"

Rep. Joe Baca, D-San Bernardino, agrees.

"It is wrong to unfairly punish those young people who come to America through no fault of their own," Baca said.

He supports the Dream Act, but said it is limited in that it helps only those who are seeking assistance in higher education or those who enroll in the military.

He has introduced the People Resolved to Obtain an Understanding of Democracy, or Proud Act, which would give "responsible immigrant high school graduates" a realistic pathway to citizenship if they have good grades, show an understanding of U.S. civics and "stayed out of trouble."

"The good news is the comprehensive immigration bill introduced in the House, H.R. 4321, includes provisions of both the Proud Act and the Dream Act," Baca said.

Rector disagreed, saying such bills do nothing more than reward illegal behavior.

"There are probably a billion people in the world that would like to come to (the United States)," Rector said. "We're saying we'll confer this on a few thousand people precisely because they broke our laws."

Rector said the Dream Act encourages future law-breaking because it has no sunset date and gives illegal immigrants that much more incentive to cross the border.

Paying for the education of undocumented children and effectively granting them citizenship so that they in turn will request legal permanent status for their parents essentially transforms the U.S. into a ruinous "global open primary" for lawbreakers who eventually will vote in the country's elections, Rector said.

A child benefitting from a criminal act such as crossing the border illegally is inexcusable, he said.

In fact, he suggested an alternative.

"They need to go back where they came from. That girl would do quite well in Mexico. It's not like consigning her to hell."

Castro said she hears that type of rhetoric all the time, from conservative political pundits to Tea Party activists.

"All I want to do is go to college," she said. "I feel as American as anybody else."

In lighter moments, Castro jokes that she could wash cars to raise money.

In the meantime, she plans to attend Riverside Community College in the summer and fall while she figures out how to pay for Berkeley.

"I don't want to fall behind. As much as you explain it to people, no one understands. It's not an easy journey. Everything I have is in the United States."


Activists force Tate Modern to close over BP

Millennium Bridge with the Tate Modern in the ...

Image via Wikipedia

Tate Modern was forced to close down parts of its No Soul For Sale tenth anniversary exhibition this Saturday whilst it struggled to remove dozens of dead fish and oil-soaked birds hanging from huge black balloons let loose in the Turbine Hall.

Art activists from Liberate Tate, a growing network dedicated to ensuring the museum drop its sponsorship deal with BP (British Petroleum), infiltrated Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall and released dozens of helium-filled black balloons with dead animals attached.

Crowds of tourists and art lovers gathered to watch the balloons rise up in the air until they filled the ceiling of the Turbine Hall.

Josephine Buoys, who took part in the art action, said:

We took this action whilst Tate sponsor BP is creating the largest oil painting in the world. Across the Gulf of Mexico ecosystems and livelihoods are being devastated by their oil spill. Every day Tate scrubs clean BP’s public image with the detergent of cool progressive art. Yet there is nothing cool about a corporation that cares more about its profits than life or the future of our fragile world.

The activist group is promising further actions to “free art from oil” by artists and activists across Britain until Tate ends its association with BP.

It has also issued an open invitation for artists, activists, art lovers and other concerned members of the public to act to ensure that Tate ends its oil sponsorship by the end of 2011 ahead of Tate Modern’s expansion into its cleaned out underground oil tanks.

@liberatetate /

Source: Liberal Conspiracy
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' jules

All's well that ends well

Mark Sanford Admits He’s Back With Maria Belen Chapur

After getting spotted by Gawker Stalkers vacationing in the Florida Keys with Argentine mistress Maria Belen Chapur, South Carolina governor Mark Sanford has admitted they were together and that they are giving their relationship a go since his wife divorced him in March. Happy endings for everyone! Today, at a press conference for something boring and legislative, he admitted what we all wanted to know:
As a matter of record, everybody in this room knows exactly who I was with over the weekend. That is no mystery to anybody given what I said last summer. And, you know, the purpose was obviously to see if something could be restarted on that front given the rather enormous geographic gulf between us. And time will tell. I don’t know if it will or won’t.
If those aren’t the lyrics to a Michael McDonald love song, we don’t know what is. “But this obsession with one’s personal life at some point has got to end,” he added. Oh does it?


This happened a while ago but I forgot to post about it until I saw the Argentina post earlier. Closure is so nice :')
' jules

A unicorn chaser for wonks!

On rater rule, Sen. Franken wins across-the-aisle backing
Support from Mississippi's Wicker for tough credit-rating rules proves pivotal

Sen. Al Franken did something that few senators these days manage to do: He gave a speech that changed a colleague's mind -- and with it, the direction of a controversial piece of legislation that even its biggest backers didn't believe had any chance of passage.

In an institution as sharply divided these days as the U.S. Senate, lawmakers typically follow the party line and rarely even listen to each other's speeches.

But Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., had his ears open as Franken, D-Minn., recently described the purpose of his bill about credit raters and how it would work.

Shortly after Franken argued that his provision would have the effect of breaking up the cycle of credit-rating agencies providing inflated ratings to get repeat business, Wicker took to the Senate floor to offer his backing.

"I had not intended to speak tonight but having heard my friend the senator from Minnesota talk about problems with rating agencies I thought I would rise to say that in very many respects the senator from Minnesota is correct," said Wicker. "I hope we can strengthen the bill with regards to rating agencies."

With that, Franken had his first Republican co-sponsor on a measure that, if enacted into law, would fundamentally transform the way agencies rate complex structured finance products -- such as the mortgage securities at the center of the financial crisis.

After Wicker, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, joined on. To the surprise of most in the consumer advocacy community, the measure passed on May 13, by a vote of 64 to 35, with the support of 10 Republicans.

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awwwwwwwww bipartisanship makes me feel all warm and fuzzy :D

Pop quiz time?

The Tennessee Highway Patrol is investigating a bizarre case that turned into a high-speed rescue on Interstate 75.   Firefighters say it seemed like something out of a movie, not real life.      But they made a dangerous rescue on I-75.

A woman told dispatchers she thought her car had been rigged with a bomb and it would go off if they slowed down below 50 mph.  Firefighters saw two young children in the car. That's when they tackled what they call a rolling rescue.

The woman passed her 3 year old from her car to firefighters in a truck while running about 55 miles per hour.

Riceville Volunteer Fire Department Chief Brandon Ainsworth says he commends his men for the work they did. He adds, "They treated the call like there was a bomb on board.  Thank goodness it was nothing and there were no injuries."

Amber Oakes and her husband Lance Oakes had another child in the car who apparently wouldn't let go of the mother.  No one was injured.  The ATF and Chattanooga Bomb Squad were dispatched.  There was no bomb.  The investigation continues.


This is very bizarre. I'm glad no one was injured, but I am not too sure about the mother's mental health, if drugs are ruled out.
' down the rabbit hole

The Randslide will bring it down...


Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Arkansas (and more) Primaries!!



Rand "Daddy's Boy" Paul vs Trey "Mitch's Boy" Grayson in the Republican primary

Jack "Best You're Gonna Get in Kentucky" Conway vs Daniel "Pretty Much What You'd Expect in Kentucky" Mongiardo in the Democratic primary


Blanche "I've Always Depended on the Kindness of Big Pharma" Lincoln vs Bill "Kos Tested, Olbermann Approved" Halter in the Democratic primary


Snarlin' Arlen "Shit My Senator Says" Specter vs Joe "<3" Sestak in the Democratic primary
Olbermann: Two top Specter supporters telling NBC News Specter cannot overcome Sestak's margin


also a special election for Jack Murtha's seat between a guy named Critz and... another guy. JUST READ THIS POST - edit looks like Critz (the Dem) is winning. edit2 Burns concedes, Critz is the winner.

Also I guess there are other primaries so you know, discuss those if you want.

MSNBC will have special coverage as will CNN & Fox I'm sure.
Dumb Cracker Mind!

Alabama's Unique Approach to High School Geometry

Jefferson County geometry teacher uses wrong example to teach angles --- assassination of President Barack Obama

A Jefferson County teacher picked the wrong example when he used as­sassinating President Bar­ack Obama as a way to teach angles to his geome­try students.

Someone alerted autho­rities and the Corner High School math teacher was questioned by the Secret Service, but was not taken into custody or charged with any crime.

"We did not find a credible threat," said Roy Sex­ton, special agent in charge of Birmingham's Secret Service office. "As far as the Secret Service is concerned, we looked into it, we talked to the gentleman and we have closed our investigation."

Corner High geometry teacher picked the wrong example, President Barack Obama, to use in a lesson on angles. The lesson resulted in a Secret Service investigation. (AP) Sexton said he generally doesn't discuss threat cases, but confirmed his of­fice investigated the inci­dent. No federal charges followed the probe.

The teacher was appar­ently teaching his geometry students about parallel lines and angles, officials said. He used the example of where to stand and aim if shooting Obama.

"He was talking about angles and said, 'If you're in this building, you would need to take this angle to shoot the president,' " said Joseph Brown, a senior in the geometry class.

Efforts to reach the teacher for comment Mon­day were unsuccessful.

 Superintendent Phil Hammonds said the teacher remains at work, and there are no plans for termination.

"We are going to have a long conversation with him about what's appropriate," Hammonds said. "It was extremely poor judgment on his part, and a poor choice of words."

Caroline Polk, the parent of a ninth-grader at the school, said she doesn't be­lieve the teacher ought to be fired.

"We all make mistakes, and we should be able to learn from our mistakes," she said. "What he said was just wrong and inappropri­ate. Everyone's got their own opinions, but we have to be aware of our sur­roundings. At this point, it just needs to be handled in a way that it won't be re­peated."


An update to the story states that the teacher has been placed on leave. For bonus points, read the enlightening and thoughtful comments!


A Generation Gap Over Immigration

MIAMI — Meaghan Patrick, a junior at New College of Florida, a tiny liberal arts college in Sarasota, says discussing immigration with her older relatives is like “hitting your head against a brick wall.”

Cathleen McCarthy, a senior at the University of Arizona, says immigration is the rare, radioactive topic that sparks arguments with her liberal mother and her grandmother.

“Many older Americans feel threatened by the change that immigration presents,” Ms. McCarthy said. “Young people today have simply been exposed to a more accepting worldview.”

Forget sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll; immigration is a new generational fault line.

In the wake of the new Arizona law allowing the police to detain people they suspect of entering the country illegally, young people are largely displaying vehement opposition — leading protests on Monday at Senator John McCain’s offices in Tucson, and at the game here between the Florida Marlins and the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Meanwhile, baby boomers, despite a youth of “live and let live,” are siding with older Americans and supporting the Arizona law.


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Seattle becomes 11th city to boycott Arizona

Yesterday, the Seattle City Council unanimously voted to boycott Arizona by ending official city travel there and resolving, when practical, to cut off future contracts with Arizona-based businesses. That makes Seattle the 11th city to endorse a boycott of the state in opposition to its controversial immigration law. Five of the boycotting cities are in California: Los Angeles tops the list as the biggest, and its boycott could deliver the most painful blow to Arizona’s economy, as the city has $58 million in existing contracts with Arizona companies, according to the L.A. Times.

In pending city votes, some members of Dallas’s city council are considering a boycott, along with the municipal governments in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Berkeley, California.

Tourism officials and Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer are pleading with opponents of the law not to boycott, saying innocent people could lose their jobs. But Democratic Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva has led the calls for boycotts of his own state, arguing that pressure needs to be put on officials to repeal the law, much as similar economic initiatives spurred the state to officially recognize the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday when it was the last state to withold such recognition.

Legal challenges to the Arizona measure could well render the boycott campaign moot, however. Since the law, which makes it a state crime to be an illegal immigrant, is already facing five legal challenges, it may be overturned before it can go into effect July 23.

Here’s a list of the cities that have announced travel and/or city-contract boycotts so far:

• Seattle, Washington• El Paso, Texas• Austin, Texas• Boston, Massachusetts• St. Paul, Minnesota • Boulder, Colorado• San Diego, California• West Hollywood, California• San Francisco, California• Los Angeles, California• Oakland, California

And here is a roster of groups that have announced travel boycotts, via

• Service Employees International Union • United Food and Commercial Workers International Union • National Council of La Raza • Asian American Justice Center • Center for Community Change • League of United Latin American Citizens • National Puerto Rican Coalition • Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights


Arizona threatens California's Electricity

Arizona dares L.A. to carry out boycott
by Stephen Dinan

The spat over Arizona's new immigration expanded Tuesday as a state official dared the city of Los Angeles to follow through on its new boycott by agreeing to give up the 25 percent of electricity that city gets from Arizona sources.

In a letter to Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Arizona Corporation Commissioner Gary Pierce said a boycott war is bad for both sides, and said he would "be happy to encourage Arizona utilities to renegotiate your power agreements" to end the electricity flowing to Los Angeles.

"I am confident that Arizona's utilities would be happy to take those electrons off your hands," Mr. Pierce said. "If, however, you find that the City Council lacks the strength of its convictions to turn off the lights in Los Angeles and boycott Arizona power, please reconsider the wisdom of attempting to harm Arizona's economy."

Los Angeles's city council voted overwhelmingly last week to adopt a boycott of Arizona businesses — at least in instances where the boycott wouldn't impose a significant economic cost to the city.

Arizona's law requires police to ask for proof of legal residence from anyone they have reasonable suspicion is not in the country legally. In most cases a driver's is sufficient to comply, and the law prohibits using race or ethnicity as a reason for suspicion, but critics say they expect the measure to spark racial profiling nonetheless.

Civil rights and Hispanic groups have sued to try to block the law, and the Obama administration is reviewing the legislation to see if it violates civil rights laws.

The law goes into effect in July, but already a number of municipalities have condemned or announced boycotts of Arizona. Mr. Villaraigosa said his city's boycott was intended to hurt the Arizona economy.

Mr. Pierce, the Arizona official, said in his letter to Mr. Villaraigosa that this was the wrong way to go.

"I received your message; please receive mine," he said.

A message left with the Mr. Villaraigosa's office was not immediately returned.

But Mr. Villaraigosa offered his own tongue-in-cheek challenge to Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon this week in a bet over the NBA playoff series between the Los Angeles Lakers and Phoenix Suns.

Mr. Villaraigosa said if Phoenix wins, Los Angeles will have to accept Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, a fierce opponent of illegal immigration. If the Lakers win, Mr. Villaraigosa said Phoenix will have to accept Steve Poizner and Meg Whitman, two Republicans battling for the GOP's gubernatorial nomination in California, where illegal immigration is a major issue.

Source: The Washington Times

Here's the letter the commissioner sent to Villaraigosa, 1 page long. 

Activists take the Prop 8 Testimony to the city streets.

Theater of the Unheard

Posted on May 13, 2010
By Neal Broverman

For a quick reminder of the importance of Elena Kagan — or any potential Supreme Court nominee — look no further than the high court’s recent decision to block cameras in the federal Proposition 8 trial, in which testimony was heard in January and closing arguments begin in June. Decided down ideological lines, that ruling kept the wrenching testimony of gay plaintiffs like Kristin Perry and Paul Katami from the public. Now the Courage Campaign, a California marriage equality group, is trying to maneuver around that decision by encouraging nationwide reenactments of the trial.

The group announced today in San Francisco that it’s launching “Testimony: Equality on Trial,” a campaign that not only encourages guerrilla-style readings but includes a website with filmed reenactments from movie and TV stars like Marisa Tomei, Josh Lucas, Patricia Clarkson, Cheyenne Jackson, and Michael Urie. The idea is that people will be drawn in by the celebrity videos and use them as examples for their own grassroots stagings, then film them and upload them to the site, YouTube-style.

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This topping post to you by Bertie Wilberforce Wooster and His Man, under "The Tie that Binds" Jeeves.
More about this at the Courage Campaign website

More Youtube linkage here