June 5th, 2012

ST // All Three Dialects

Maybe Romney can cover Nickelback? They both suck and yet are somehow popular.

Finally, Barack Obama Covers ‘Call Me Maybe’

OK, so it's not actually the President singing Carly Rae Jepsen's oh-God-why-can't-I-stop-listening-to-this hit, but it's definitely the next best thing.

Nineteen-year-old Fadi Saleh, who goes by "Barackdubs" on YouTube, partnered with MTV Act to create this masterful dub. If anything is going to propel Obama to victory in November — well, it probably won't be this, but I'll definitely be watching it a scary number of times before then.

Source just met you and this is crazy

So, I'm kind of totally in love with this. There are three more 'Barack dubs' at Saleh's youtube page and they're magical. I think this is an important moment for American-Canadian relations, tbqh.

Also, idgaf, I love Call Me Maybe.


And now, the weather forecast for your face: rain. Nothing but rain.

Transgender teen graduates in Tulsa
By Cary Aspinwall, Tulsa World

The graduating seniors at Bixby High School walk to their seats in the Mabee Center under a sword salute by the Marine Corps Junior ROTC students of Lt. Col. Randy Hill's class.

Fashion among Bixby's senior class girls dictates many wear neon-hued platform stilettos with their Spartan blue graduation gowns and caps.

About one-third of the way through the alphabet, Hill's daughter, Katie, glides across the stage, and the school administrators offer her a steadying hand down the stairs, as they do for every senior girl — even though Katie is wearing sparkly flat sandals.

No platform heels are needed. At 5-foot-10, she's tall enough to model or be Miss Universe, if she wanted. (The pageant recently allowed its first transgender competitor.)

Katie takes her seat and waits patiently through "achieve your dreams!" speeches by the principal and three valedictorians, through her peers in A through G of the alphabet. When the time comes, she saunters back to the stage and waits for her name to be called so she can grab her diploma cover and shift the tassel on her mortar board.

"Katie. Rain. Hill." Applause, and cheers from her family and friends. Like any other graduate.

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When Katie first came to Jazzlyn in tears about being transgender, worried she might live as an outcast, her mother promised there would be light at the end of the tunnel.

"Katie, one of these days you'll see — this is not a curse, this is a blessing," Jazzlyn told her. "You're meant to do something great with this."

Something that was a dark period in her child's life has turned out to be an incredible blessing, Jazzlyn said. "I never thought the light would be as bright as it is," she said.

Katie is typical of her generation, in that she wears her heart on her sleeve and her life on her Facebook wall.

Three days after she returned from California, started feeling better and spent time with family and Arin, Katie updated her status again: "So happy with life."


Source, but please do also check out Tulsa World's previous two stories from last year. She's amazing, and how much do you love her mom? I really hope her dad is serious about finally coming around.
This is a witty Space Ghost reference.

38 Percent Agree With Romney That Michigan's Trees Are The Right Height

Mitt Romney has long been a fan of the height of the trees in Michigan. From his first presidential campaign in 2008 to his campaigning there before the Republican primary this February, he has professed that Michigan's "trees are the right height."

But are they really? Public Policy Polling asked voters to find out for themselves.

Yes, most Michiganders agree with Romney — 38 percent think the trees are the right height, agreeing with Romney. Eight percent disagree with him. Fifty-five percent, as to be expected, have no idea what exactly is the correct height of trees.

In less important news, PPP's Michigan poll found that Barack Obama is a pretty safe bid to win Michigan this November. He's up a pretty astounding 14 points, getting 53 percent of the vote to Romney's 39 percent. Michiganders generally approve of the job Obama is doing (53 percent).

And, in an important measure, Michigan voters by and large think Obama is better than Romney for the state's key industry — the auto industry.

More on the trees polling: More people that identified as "very liberal" (51 percent) said Michigan's trees were the right height than those who identified as "very conservative" (just 27 percent). Expect a Romney backtrack accordingly.

Business Insider

The Vatican condemns nun’s sex-positive book

The Vatican has condemned a leading American nun for writing a book in which she praises female masturbation and approves divorce and gay sex and marriage, warning that the book must not be used by catholic educators.

The Vatican’s criticism of Sister Margaret Farley, a professor emeritus of Christian ethics at Yale University, comes amid escalating tension with America’s nuns, after the Holy See accused them of preaching “radical feminist” ideas.

In a statement approved by pope Benedict and issued on Monday, the Vatican’s doctrinal office claims Farley’s book, Just Love, a Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics, “ignores the constant teaching of the Magisterium or, where it is occasionally mentioned, treats it as one opinion among others”.

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Got Bunny?

Appeals court refuses rehearing on California's Proposition 8

(CNN) -- The divisive issue of same-sex marriage in California may become another landmark case taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court after federal appeals court judges refused Tuesday to revisit an earlier ruling.

The 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco denied a request to re-examine the constitutionality of Proposition 8, California's voter-approved referendum defining marriage as only between a woman and a man.

In February, a three-judge panel of that court ruled the measure unconstitutional. In its split decision, the panel found that Proposition 8 "works a meaningful harm to gays and lesbians" by denying their right to civil marriage in violation of the 14th Amendment.

Backers of the proposition had asked for a larger panel of judges to rehear the case. In a seven-page order Tuesday, the court refused.

The parties now have 90 days to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene. In the meantime, a stay on same-sex marriages in California will remain in place until the issue is exhausted in the courts.

Supporters of Proposition 8 vowed to appeal to the nation's highest court.

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buffy spike black&violet by gilkurtisctx

Argentina's Gender Identity Law Takes Effect

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- Transsexuals lined up Monday to be the first to take advantage of Argentina's groundbreaking gender-identity law, which enables people to change their names and sexes on official documents without first getting approval from a judge or doctor.

No other country in the world allows people to change their official identities based merely on how they feel.

Many other countries, including the United States, require people to pass barriers that sexual identity experts describe as painful or humiliating, such as hormone therapy or surgeries to physically change their sex organs and psychiatric visits to demonstrate they have "gender identity disorder" or other abnormalities.

Argentina's gender identity law won congressional approval with a 55-0 Senate vote last month and took effect Monday. A small group of transsexuals chose to assert their rights immediately at a civil registry in downtown Buenos Aires.

Silvana Daniela Sosa, who was born Miguel Angel Sosa, emerged with a form showing her new identity card is being processed.

Another transsexual, Maria Mara Brodos, said, "It's important to have the freedom to decide by myself and not have anyone deciding it instead of me."

She said she had struggled for years to persuade judges to allow her to get documents reflecting her change in gender.

"I had many legal experts, and every time it was them talking – I wasn't able to say who I was," she recalled. "It was both funny and painful, because no one is authorized to say who I am, but me."

Source: Huffingtonpost

This is just damn awesome. I love it. Yay for Argentina!

See comment by blackberryqueer for more info and several links.
TXF // I'm Fine (No I'm Not)

Rest in peace, Darius

Another Unarmed Black Youth Shot & Killed. Darius Simmons was Only 13 Years Old

TW: Racism, racial violence, the police being absolute fucks, descriptions of Darius' murder

Patricia Larry holds a photograph of her son, Darius Simmons, 13 (AP Photo/Dinesh Ramde)

Just a few short months ago Hip-Hop journalist Davey D blogged about the 29 Black people that had been killed by police or those claiming to be security since 2012, 16 after the murder of Trayvon Martin. This was before police in Oakland, CA killed 18 year old high school senior Alan Blueford under very questionable circumstances. This morning I just got word from the Executive Director of the League of Young Voters, Biko Baker, that another Black youth was shot down, he was only 13 years old.

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I absolutely fucking hate everything.

Unemployed bussed in to steward river pageant

Some of those hired as stewards had to spend the night before the pageant sleeping under London Bridge.A group of long-term unemployed jobseekers were bussed into London to work as unpaid stewards during the diamond jubilee celebrations and told to sleep under London Bridge before working on the river pageant.

Up to 30 jobseekers and another 50 people on apprentice wages were taken to London by coach from Bristol, Bath and Plymouth as part of the government's Work Programme.

Two jobseekers, who did not want to be identified in case they lost their benefits, said they had to camp under London Bridge the night before the pageant. They told the Guardian they had to change into security gear in public, had no access to toilets for 24 hours, and were taken to a swampy campsite outside London after working a 14-hour shift in the pouring rain on the banks of the Thames on Sunday.

One young worker said she was on duty between London Bridge and Tower Bridge during the £12m river spectacle of a 1,000-boat flotilla and members of the Royal family sail by . She said that the security firm Close Protection UK, which won a stewarding contract for the jubilee events, gave her a plastic see-through poncho and a high-visibility jacket for protection against the rain.

Close Protection UK confirmed that it was using up to 30 unpaid staff and 50 apprentices, who were paid £2.80 an hour, for the three-day event in London. A spokesman said the unpaid work was a trial for paid roles at the Olympics, which it had also won a contract to staff. Unpaid staff were expected to work two days out of the three-day holiday.

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Evil Kitty

Paycheck Fairness Act Fails Senate Vote

*edited to fix subject bork*

WASHINGTON -- Senate Republicans on Tuesday blocked a bill that would have ensured women are paid the same amount as their male counterparts.

The Senate failed to secure the 60 votes needed to advance the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would have required employers to demonstrate that any salary differences between men and women doing the same work are not gender-related. The bill also would have prohibited employers from retaliating against employees who share salary information with their co-workers, and would have required the Labor Department to increase its outreach to employers to help eliminate pay disparities.

The final vote was 52-47, with all Republicans opposing the bill. That included female Sens. Kelly Ayotte (N.H.), Susan Collins (Maine), Kay Bailey Hutchison (Texas), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Olympia Snowe (Maine).

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On Wisconsin!

WI Election Live Post

Didn't see a live post up, so I thought I'd make one.

Update: Walker has been called as the winner.
Update 2: Basically every republican in the state has survived their recall. Fuck everything.

Here are a bunch of links:
AP Election Results
HuffPo Election Results, by county
DailyKos Live Thread
Voter reports
Streaming courtesy of lickbrains

Holy shit you guys. Holy. shit. I don't know what else to do besides drink and F5 all of my tabs. I'm having Yellow Tail's "Sweet Red Roo". Share your drinks of choice if that's your thing.

Calvin & Hobbes: Pure essence of evil
  • calybe

The President’s Kill List

What is wrong with the President sitting in a room, looking at lists and portraits of people—a Somali man, a seventeen-year-old girl, an American citizen—and deciding whom to kill? That, according to long and troubling articles in both the Times and Newsweek, is a job Barack Obama has assigned himself. His aides, notably John Brennan, his counter-terrorism adviser, portray it as a matter of taking responsibility—if we are going to assassinate someone, or call in a drone strike to take out a camp in Yemen, the President should make the call—as if our only alternative were some sort of rogue operation, with generals or C.I.A. agents shooting at will. But responsibility involves accountability, which is something, in this case, that appears to be badly lacking. Obama has not taken on a burden, but instead has given the Presidency a novel power.

The “kill list” story is a reminder of how much language matters, and how dangerous it is when the plain meaning of a word is ignored. Each might include a mini-glossary: “baseball cards,” for the PowerPoint slides with the biographies and faces of targets; “Terror Tuesday,” meetings where targets are sorted out; “nominations” for death-marked finalists; “personality strikes” that aimed to kill a person, and “signature strikes” that went after a group of people whose names one didn’t know because of the way they seemed, from pictures in the sky, to be acting. (From the Times piece, written by Jo Becker and Scott Shane: “The joke was that when the C.I.A. sees ‘three guys doing jumping jacks,’ the agency thinks it is a terrorist training camp, said one senior official.”) Signature strikes were also known as TADS, for terrorist-attack-disruption strikes, or just as “crowd kills.”

Both articles explore Obama’s halting efforts to confine signature strikes to Pakistan, rather than Yemen and Somalia, and how he ultimately didn’t, really. This is the kind of attack that, in one incident mentioned by Daniel Klaidman in his Newsweek piece, led to “persuasive” reports of dozens of women and children dying. A lawyer who saw that on “Kill TV,” the feed that let the military and lawyers watch strikes, said later, “If I were Catholic, I’d have to go to confession.”

More disturbing than childish names for brutal things are the absurd meanings ascribed to more sober terms. The key ones are “civilians and combatants,” and “due process.”

How do you minimize civilian casualties in a conflict? Ask a military planner or human-rights organization or just a sensible person and each might come up with a list of tactics, plans, litmus tests. And there were apparently elements of that in the White House’s conversations. But ask a sophist or, as it happens, the C.I.A., and you might get this suggestion: change the definition. As the Times described it, Obama

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