August 9th, 2012

This is a witty Space Ghost reference.

Papa John’s Founder To Raise Price Of Pizza Due To ‘Obamacare’

Papa John’s warns it will have to raise the price of its pizzas due to President Obama’s health care law.

John Schnatter, CEO and founder of Papa John’s, said pizza will cost up to 14 cents more when the Affordable Care Act goes into effect in 2014.

“We’re not supportive of Obamacare, like most businesses in our industry. But our business model and unit economics are about as ideal as you can get for a food company to absorb Obamacare,” Schnatter said in a conference call during last week’s shareholder’s meeting, according to Politico.

Schnatter later added: “If Obamacare is in fact not repealed, we will find tactics to shallow out any Obamacare costs and core strategies to pass that cost onto consumers in order to protect our shareholders best interests,”

According to Pizza Marketplace, there are nearly 4,000 Papa John’s restaurants in all 50 states and 33 countries.

Schnatter, a Romney supporter, held a private fundraiser for the GOP presidential candidate at his Kentucky home in April.


In Slip, Romney Refers to ‘Sheik Temple’ Tragedy

DES MOINES — In extending condolences for the Wisconsin shooting, Mitt Romney mistakenly referred to the victims gunned down at a “sheik” temple, twice using the Arabic term for a respected leader to refer to the Sikh religion, a non-Muslim faith.

“We obviously have challenges around the country,’’ Mr. Romney said on Tuesday evening, according to a transcript by a press representative attending a fund-raising event in West Des Moines. “I was in Chicago earlier today. We had a moment of silence in honor of the people who lost their lives at that sheik temple. I noted that it was a tragedy for many, many reasons. Among them are the fact that people, the sheik people are among the most peaceable and loving individuals you can imagine, as is their faith.’’

After the speech, at the Glen Oaks Country Club, a Romney spokesman, Rick Gorka, was asked about the slip.

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The articles about this all had such excellent dumb-looking pictures of Romney. It was so hard to pick just one that accurately depicted the stupidity of this gaffe

"Health cuts are killing me" Sobbing cancer patient denied treatment tells David Cameron

DAVID Cameron was yesterday confronted by a sobbing cancer sufferer demanding to know why he is spending £12billion on aid while she cannot get treatment.

“Anna”, 68, spoke out after figures showed that the NHS faces a third year of cuts despite Mr Cameron’s pledge to keep pumping money into it.

She said she needed a £250,000 course of treatment in Germany because an allergic reaction had forced her to stop her NHS chemotherapy

“Anna” – using a false name because she has not told loved ones she is ill – said in a message recorded for a radio appearance by the PM: “I’m a cancer victim, or patient, waiting for treatment that isn’t on the National Health

“My local health authority is begging charities for my treatment.

"I had my last chemotherapy in May and it is a horrible feeling, waiting for £250,000 when they are giving billions away abroad. It is not fair – I need funding now.”

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OP: Labour increase funding on the NHS because it was their initiative while the Tories cut funding because they don't like it. Nye Bevan who devised the health service famously said that the Tories were 'lower than vermin'. Further comment would be superfluous.

Anyway we need the money to give to countries overseas that have space programmes to pay for.

Louisiana Department Of Education Orders School To Drop Ban On Pregnant Students

By Tara Culp-Ressler

Louisiana education officials are requiring the Delhi Charter School to drop the “Student Pregnancy Policy” that bans pregnant students from attending classes on its campus. After the American Civil Liberties Union called the discriminatory policy unconstitutional and pressured the school with potential legal action, the Louisiana Department of Education has agreed that Delhi Charter School is in violation of federal law.

A letter from Michael Higgins, the director of law and policy in the Education Department’s Office of School Choice, asked the school to make an immediate change to the policy no later than August 16th:

In the letter, released to Tuesday evening, the state asks for a policy that “does not discriminate against pregnant students or students perceived to be pregnant” and says that “under no circumstances shall the school require any student to take a pregnancy test.”
The school, which has approximately 700 students from kindergarten to 12th grade, said earlier in the day that although there have never been any complaints about the policy, it was under legal review “to ensure that necessary revisions are made so that our school is in full compliance with constitutional law.”

After the ACLU’s letter to the Delhi Charter School on Monday brought public attention to the policy, the school was faced with significant backlash. An online petition urging the school to stop discriminating against pregnant students has garnered over 90,000 signatures in just over a day.


A beautiful, must-read letter from a soon-to-be father to his hypothetically gay son

On Tuesday morning I ran across this letter on Reddit, from a father disowning his gay son. It broke my heart. It's not the first time that I've seen something like this; here in Utah it's a pretty common story. In fact, I had friends in high school who experienced it firsthand. But Tuesday was the first time I'd run across such a story since becoming a dad. My son is living in his mom's belly right now, so obviously we don't know his sexual orientation. Still, the letter I read Tuesday morning made me wonder what my letter would say if the news that my son was gay ended up being a surprise. So here it is:

Dear hypothetically gay son,

You're gay. Obviously you already know that, because you told us at the dinner table last night. I apologize for the awkward silence afterwards, but I was chewing. It was like when we're at a restaurant and the waiter comes up mid-bite and asks how the meal is, only in this metaphor you are the waiter, and instead of asking me about my meal, you said you were gay. I don't know why I needed to explain that. I think I needed to find a funny way to repeat the fact that you're gay... because that is what it sounds like in my head right now: "My son is gay. My son is gay. My son is gay."

Let me be perfectly clear: I love you. I will always love you. Since being gay is part of who you are, I love that you're gay. I'm just trying to wrap my head around the idea. If you sensed any sadness in my silence last night, it was because I was surprised that I was surprised. Ideally, I would have already known. Since you were an embryo, my intent has always been to really know you for who you are and not who I expect you to be. And yet, I was taken by surprise at last night's dinner. Have I said "surprise" enough in this paragraph? One more time: Surprise!

OK. Let's get a few things straight about how things are going to be.

Our home is a place of safety and love. The world has dealt you a difficult card. While LGBT people are becoming more accepted, it is still a difficult path to walk. You're going to experience hate and anger and misunderstandings about who you are out in the world. That will not happen here. You need to know with every fiber of who you are that when you walk in the front door of your home, you are safe, and you are loved. Your mother is in complete agreement with me on this.
I am still, as always, your biggest defender. Just because you're gay doesn't mean you're any less capable of taking care of and defending yourself. That said, if you need me to stand next to you or in front of you, write letters, sign petitions, advocate, or anything else, I am here. I would go to war for you.
If you're going to have boys over, you now need to leave your bedroom door open. Sorry, kiddo. Them's the breaks. I couldn't have girls in my room with the door shut, so you don't get to have boys.
You and I are going to revisit that talk we had about safe sex. I know it's going to be awkward for both of us, but it is important. I need to do some research first, so let's give it a few weeks. If you have questions or concerns before then, let me know.
That's enough for now. Feel free to view this letter as a contract. If I ever fail to meet any of the commitments made herein, pull it out and hold me to account. I'll end with this: You are not broken. You are whole, and beautiful. You are capable and compassionate. You and your sister are the best things I have ever done with my life, and I couldn't be prouder of the people you've become.


P.S. Thanks to a few key Supreme Court decisions and the Marriage Equality Act of 2020, you're legally able to get married. When I was your age, that was just an idea. Pretty cool, huh?

I think after all the right-wing chicanery we've been exposed lately (this election and the surge of extremist has really taken a toll on my emotional health), we all need to be cheered up by awesome stories like this one.

With that said, I would like nominate this future dad as ONTD_P's BAMF of the week.
His twitter account for those interested in sharing your thoughts AskDadBlog

Sovereign Citizens Arrested After Standoff with SWAT

Two men part of a growing “sovereign” movement that questions government authority were arrested in Otis Orchards today after a SWAT team standoff.

The men had pulled over at North Starr Road and East Kildea Road for deputies investigating invalid license plates on their truck but refused to exit the vehicle, said Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich.

The truck was covered in sovereign citizen signs, including one that said it was a “noncommercial private vehicle” and “no trespassing.”

Knezovich joined SWAT team negotiators because self-proclaimed sovereigns typically recognize the sheriff as the highest law enforcement authority, he said.

“They were, thank goodness, nonviolent and it ended very well,” Knezovich said.

The men agreed to surrender but still refused to exit the vehicle. SWAT officers took them into custody with “minimal force,” Knezovich said, though they had to be cut from their seat belts.

The standoff started about 2 p.m. and ended about 4:30 p.m. The men’s names were not immediately available.


I know it's local, but this is part of a growing national problem and the article is short, so I thought I'd submit. I'm interested to hear about other local SC incidents. Also WTF why was SWAT involved if it was peaceful...? Is that standard?   

  • yeats

Zimmerman Prosecutors In Huge Screw-Up


In an embarrassing screw-up, Florida prosecutors today accidentally distributed a post-mortem photo of Trayvon Martin as well as copies of George Zimmerman’s college records, material that Florida law considers confidential and exempt from disclosure.

The documents were inadvertently included in supplemental discovery records distributed this morning by prosecutor Angela Corey’s office. The material was sent to a variety of media outlets, including TSG, that have paid fees to receive discovery provided by the government to Zimmerman’s lawyer.

The photocopied picture of Martin was one of three taken by an unnamed witness. The photo mistakenly released by Corey is a black and white copy of an image depicting the teenager lying face down on a lawn.

After distributing the picture, a Corey aide sent an e-mail to reporters noting that a “photo depicting the killing of a person” was “confidential and exempt” pursuant to state law.

Zimmerman’s Seminole State College of Florida records--61 pages in total--include his original application to the community college and his class transcripts. The documents detailed Zimmerman’s poor grades, which landed him on academic probation last year.

Zimmerman, who was studying for an associate degree in criminal justice, did not graduate last year due to a failed class. Following the February 26 shooting of the unarmed Martin, Zimmerman “was issued administrative withdrawals” for three classes in the Spring 2012 term “with no fees charged against his account.” (3 page)

The Smoking Gun has the documents. A lot of people are suggesting that this leak is the prelude to the defense arguing for a mistrial.

the photo in question, which is really blurry, is below a spoiler cut.

[trigger warning for image of murdered child]

Obama opposes Scouts anti-gay discrimination

President Obama is opposed to the Boy Scouts of America’s ban on gay members, volunteers and staff, his spokesman said today.

Speaking to the Washington Blade, White House spokesman Shin Inouye said: “The President believes the Boy Scouts is a valuable organisation that has helped educate and build character in American boys for more than a century.

“He also opposes discrimination in all forms, and as such opposes this policy that discriminates on basis of sexual orientation.”

Mr Obama is the honorary president of the Boy Scouts but Mr Inouye said he would not resign over his view.

The Scout group recently decided to maintain its ban on gay members, despite a campaign asking it to accept them.

Meanwhile, US presidential candidate Mitt Romney backs the right of gay people to join the Scouts, despite his many pronouncements against gay rights.

In 1994, he said that while the Boy Scouts of American should be free to set its own policies, he agreed that it should allow gay people to be members, staff and volunteers.

“I support the right of the Boy Scouts of America to decide what it wants to do on that issue. I feel that all people should be able to participate in the Boy Scouts regardless of their sexual orientation,” Mr. Romney said during a debate at the time.

His campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul told AP this week that the view “remains Romney’s position today.”


source, also, if you haven't seen it, there is a tumblr posting the letters of Eagle Scouts who are returning their badges in a protest of the boy scouts anti-gay policies.

Rep. Todd Akin - Morning-after pills should be banned

Republican Rep. Todd Akin, who is running for Senate in Missouri, on Wednesday said that emergency contraceptive pills should be outlawed.

“As far as I’m concerned, the morning-after pill is a form of abortion,” he told KCMO’s Greg Knapp, “and I think we shouldn’t have abortion in this country.”

Akin suggested there should be no exceptions for rape or incest. When it came the mother’s health, doctors should try to “optimize life.”

“The life of the mother, the situation there is one where I think what you want to do is optimize life,” Akin said. “You try to save the mother’s life, you try to save the child. There are certain things like, you know, you get a tubal pregnancy where the child has absolutely no chance of surviving, then you do the best you can to save the mother’s life.”

Emergency contraceptive pills like Plan B and Ella can prevent pregnancy in women after unprotected sex by delaying or preventing ovulation. Anti-abortion advocates have opposed the pills because some research has found it prevents fertilized eggs from implanting on the uterine wall. However, that research is highly disputed.

Listen to audio, clipped by Progress Missouri, below:


This person is a sitting Congressman who has a very good shot at winning a US Senate seat.

Swedish foreign affairs minister is a troll

Belarusian TV calls Carl Bildt “internet troll”

State TV channels showed reportages about the recent diplomatic row.

Official propagandists gave generous epithets to insult Swedish politicians, first of all to foreign minister Carl Bildt. Stockholm was accused of “political hysteria” and carrying out a “destructive policy” towards our country.

Politologist Yury Shautsou called Stefan Eriksson “the most unsuccessful diplomat ever”. The ambassador was accused of “limiting his contacts to a narrow circle of marginal persons that predetermined the unenviable end of his diplomatic mission”. Journalists said the Swedish foreign minister is “constantly trolling on Twitter”.
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absinthe, wormwood

Trans* man refused healthcare because he's trans*

Jay Kallio, transgender New Yorker, says he was not informed he had breast cancer by his bewildered bigoted piece of shit [Ed] physician

New York's Jay Kallio faced a "stone wall of non-acceptance" when trying to receive medical attention, delaying his care past the "therapeutic window for chemotherapy"

A transgender man is speaking out against alleged discrimination towards the transgendered community by the medical community – while describing his own ordeal, in which he says a physician never told him about his breast cancer diagnosis because he was bewildered by the man's transgender status.

Jay (formerly Joy) Kallio of New York says he learned that he had cancer later on "accidentally," when he received a call from a radiologist asking how he was dealing with the condition - a condition he didn't know he had at the time. Afterward, he says he faced a long line of rejections when seeking medical treatment.

"I kept hitting this stone wall of non-acceptance," Kallio told the Daily News. "It's a systemic problem. It was at all levels of providers, from doctors to housekeeping to the nursing staff. People need to be aware that this discrimination will not be tolerated."

The government also says this kind of discrimination is now illegal, as part of the new health care law. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the Affordable Care Act - so-called Obamacare - signed into law by the President in March 2010 - prohibits physicians from discriminating against LGBT patients.

Kallio was thrilled to hear about the ACA. "It's incredibly important to me that this not happen to other transgender people," he said. "To have all this added stress and rejection and to be denied care from providers was daunting - it was awful."

Kallio, now 56, transitioned from female to male at age 50. He only took hormone treatment and never underwent anatomical surgery, so when the head of surgery at a major New York hospital saw that Kallio's body didn't correspond with his gender identification, he was bewildered. The surgeon told Kallio to get a mammogram. After the exam determined that a lump in Kallio's breast was cancerous, the surgeon reportedly never informed Kallio.

Aside from the humiliation, Kallio's health suffered because he needed to search for new doctors for chemotherapy. This search too was hindered when he confronted hostility from an oncologist who refused to advise him, reports ABC News.

"It delayed my care past the therapeutic window for chemotherapy," Kallio said. "You should have chemotherapy within three months of cancer therapy. Because I had to change providers and kept encountering discrimination, it delayed the care. So much of cancer care has to do with early treatment."

Kallio became an LBGT activist after being fired for being a lesbian in 1972, according to Service and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Elders. He claims that he was distressed by the absence of legal protection from discrimination of LGBT people. Kallio hopes the ACA puts an end to such discrimination.

When gay activists asked for clarification concerning the act's effect on the LGBT community, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Director Leon Rodriguez responded. "Section 1557's sex discrimination prohibition," Rodriguez wrote," extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity and will accept such complaints for investigation."

On March 26, HHS published a press release reaffirming their commitment to the health of all Americans. "Our Department is committed to improving the health of all Americans, including LGBT Americans, and we look forward to continuing this work during LGBT Health Awareness Week and beyond."

Kallio told ABC News he has since been forced into an HMO that doesn’t accept his current oncologist, so he will need to find another provider who will treat a transgender person.

“I’m now 2 years post-treatment, so I’ve entered a peak recurrence time,” Kallio told the Daily News, emphasizing the importance of continued medical attention.


Most of the time, discussions of trans* healthcare focus on access to treatment which we need to transition. Obviously this is incredibly important for many trans* folk, but it means that discrimination in other areas of healthcare provision doesn't get discussed so much. Clearly there's still a lot of work to be done in this area.
Rooney Mara - smiles

North Haven (CT) Hates Bunnies, Wants Family Pet Gone

NORTH HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) -- A North Haven family is asking for help after the town told them they have to get rid of their daughter's pet rabbit.

The family says the town sent them a letter after an inspection was done at their house.

They were told that an old ordinance says people in town aren't allowed to have rabbits on their property if they're not a certain size.

Seven-year-old Kayden Lidsky considers her pet bunny Sandy her best friend.

"She lays with me in bed sometimes," Kayden said.

It's one big bunny, a Giant Flemish weighing over 20 pounds. However, it's not the size of the rabbit, rather the size of the family's property that has the town of North Haven saying the rabbit must be removed from the Susan Lane home.
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Source has a video, and a picture of this yard that is "too small" for a rabbit.