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I found the Iowa Caucus results rather satisfying. However, I arrived too late to see the speeches and...dumbass me...I forgot to tivo them. I shall have to correct that.

In other news, it's still stormy here. Various cities outside of Sacramento are contemplating distributing sandbags. Hopefully they won't be needed. I loves me some rain, but not that much rain.
weaktwos: (No More HEE)
I found this interesting on last night's All Things Considered.

AT&T Wiretap Whistleblower Fights Senate Deal

Many will not find this news, but I find it very interesting that all our phone traffic was being copied to the NSA's systems. And it covered Sprint, Qwest, etc.

This government has been so atrocious. Thank goodness we will have a new president in a few years, and many other new officials.
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So, according to /., Opus is not being carried by their home newspaper (the Washington Post) and a number of other newspapers around the country for a few sundays. (This Sunday and next)

I presume they are afraid of significant backlash.

Here's today's Opus.

I don't find it particularly offensive. It's not exactly an uneven attack. It's more of a comparitive piece. Both western culture and radical islam are lampooned in roughly even fashion.

Of course, I'm slightly bothered that as far as I know, radical islamists seem to treat their women the most poorly.

What do you think?
weaktwos: (what?!)
No reincarnation without the government's permission. This law seems so Ministry of Magic, don't you think?


You know, after hearing that a Chinese executive responsible for the lead toys killed himself recently in addition to sentencing a Chinese official to death for taking bribes to allow unsafe drugs on the market, I was starting to romanticize China a bit. I allowed myself to daydream how cool it would be if corporate execs and government officials who were responsible for the deaths of innocents would voluntarily take themselves out, or be put to death.

But hearing news that the Chinese government also imprisoned environmental activists and the recent reincarnation law (allowing the government to select the next Dalai Lama) has brought me back to my senses. I will no longer harbor such romantic notions of the powerful being punished for their egregious abuses of power.

Mupdate

Jul. 7th, 2007 10:24 am
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Interesting link: This will start rolling out pages sometime in 2008. The Encyclopedia of Life. An encyclopedia for every single living (known) organism on this planet. The mockups of it look really cool.

Interesting Debate: The Jesus Picture in the Courthouse. It's an interesting case, in that it really divides some folks. If the court rules in favor of the plaintiff (ACLU) The Christian folks might feel persecuted because their faith is no longer favored in the courthouse. Some would say, "Hey, it's just a picture!". Others will say, "Christianity is part of our heritage!"

That is good and well, but a courthouse is not a place to display bias on faith. There are plenty of churches and museums to cover our heritage. If it's just a picture, Why be bothered if it's taken down? Believe me, Megachurches are preserving the heritage.

We got some vile, vile life: Two teenagers gang-rape a woman, force her son to watch and participate. Okay, this is off-the-hook in terms of gruesomeness. This is wretched, and somehow I don't think it's as bad as it gets. I'm fascinated to find out about these teenagers and learn what factors inclined them to this crime. Were they always without empathy such that they wouldn't want to inflict such suffering on a anothr human being? Certainly they have an understanding of torture and suffering, they created a hellish scenario for a mother and son. What have they been exposed to that drove them to this crime? One report mentioned that they felt no remorse. Very frightening.

David Limbaugh is brandishing the tired Pro-scootie talking points.
He has merely been the scapegoat for the Bush-hating left, which has been lusting to criminalize the administration over the president's fraudulently alleged misrepresentations about Iraqi WMD.

Yeah, the Bush-hating Justice Department started this all.

And finally, goofy memage:




You're Minnesota!

You love hanging out around lakes, even if they're frozen solid. Given
your probable Scandanavian heritage, it all just demonstrates that you're pining for the
fjords. Your obsession with wrestling got a little carried away for a while there, and
this should prompt some serious reflection about the separation of mind and body. It may
be time to celebrate, even throw your hat up in the air. You're going to make it after
all.



Take the State Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.



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Before I begin to provide my .02, I'll just attach the Libby Indictment for reference.

There's a lot of interesting back and forth going on here at the Volokh Conspiracy.

Here's a quick blurb from Professor Michael Dorf of Columbia.

So many things to consider here. Far more for my non-lawyer brain to dilute appropriately. Read more... )
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Coming to me by way of the Volokh Conspiracy, the Washington Post has been doing some articles on Dick Cheney and how he has taken on an unusually potent role in the White House. You can see the links to the articles here.

There is no question, he appears to be rather cunning. Despite all that, there are a few cases in which his penchant for secrecy and compartmentalizing worked to his disadvantage.

Especially frightening are his brazen views that the office of the Vice President belongs to none of the three main branches of government. Neither legislative nor Executive. And he sure as hell can't be judicial. Where in the hell does he think his office belongs?
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One beltway insider is quoted saying the neo-cons are "weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness" of Libby's sentence. And there's the rub. None seem the least weighted down by the sheer, glaring unfairness of sentencing soldiers to repeated and longer tours of duty in a war induced by deception. It was left to the hawkish academic Fouad Ajami to state it baldly, as he pleaded on the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal for Bush to pardon Libby. For believing "in the nobility of this war," wrote Ajami, Scooter Libby had himself become a "casualty" -- a fallen soldier the president dare not leave behind on the beltway battlefield. Not a word in the entire article about the real fallen soldiers. The honest-to-god dead and dying and wounded. Not a word about the chaos or the cost. All the beltway warriors can muster is a plea of mercy for one of their own who lied to cover their tracks...

...And from the former Governor of Virginia, James Gilmore, a staunch conservative, comes this verdict: "If the public believes there's one law for a certain group of people in high places and another law for regular people, then you will destroy the law and destroy the system." So it may well be, as the Hartford Courant said editorially, that Mr. Libby is "a nice guy, a loyal and devoted patriot"...but none of that excuses perjury or obstruction of justice. If it did, truth wouldn't matter much."


I would agree. There's something rotten about someone found guilty of a crime not serving his sentence with a little dignity. And our leaders should support the law. Yet Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Wolfawitz, Delay all extolling the virtues of a man who perjured himself. And this is not a case of trying the case in the media. Scooter was tried in court, and sentenced by conservative judges. Considering the Republican party is known to get all up in a tiff over conduct, especially when it comes to receiving blow jobs, you'd think y'all would be galvanized on not endorsing any sort of lying or dishonesty, especially when it comes to exposing CIA agents.

Oh wait. He was lying to protect you guys. That's different.

While the truth may set you free, I suppose lying keeps you free. For a while.
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You so Crazy!

Thanks to Jesus' General, this was brought to my attention. I rather like the good General's proposal.

I'd like for Chuck to explain how Christian it is to send thousands of our soldiers to risk death to liberate a people who do not seem to want us there.
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I'm not too thrilled about leaving town for another week, but I gotta grow up and get over it.

I do have some links to share, however:

1. A wrap up of the Republican Debates from Daily KOS. This is a keeper if only for the following line: After all, calling everyone in Hollywood a loon, then fawning over any third-rate actor who will give them the time of day, is a Republican tradition.


2. Y'all remember the joke "The Aristocrats"? Well, a new one has entered the compendium.

3. A History of Disbelief. Jonathan Miller was interviewed on Moyer's show that aired recently. I'm not sure if this will show up in America, or if it has shown up in American television. (and the videos are no longer working for me, at least, so I'll have to find another source, dammit)
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Bill Maher(to Tommy Thompson): Don't you think your love for Ronald Reagan is a little over the top? It's kind of like gay guys and Barbara Streisand."
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Here's a roundup of some blogosphere reactions to the evolution question asked of the candidates. For those who didn't hear, three of them agreed that they do not believe in evolution without qualification.
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I found this link in the Good Eats community.

The CMA is petitioning the FDA to change the content of chocolate. They want to be able to use whey and vegetable fats instead of milk and cocoa butter.

Follow the first link above to go and add your name to a petition to campaign against this.
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I posted with great and restrained glee that an investigation was being launched on Karl Rove.

Well,now I'm not so sure this will be fruitful. Either there is a lot of in-fighting, or this is a ruse.
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Rove is being investigated by the Office of Special Counsel.

It would be nice if he was neutralized. Then again, he's pretty darned crafty.
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So, Congress is looking at cutting PBS funding. I don't know about you, but I love the shows that PBS provides for us all.

So, there's two things I'll encourage you to do. First, donate to your local PBS station to help support their operation. Second, sign a petition that MoveOn.org is sponsoring to show your support, as well.

Go here to sign the petition.

Tired of lame news from big corporate media like CNN, Fox, or MSNBC? Then support NPR and PBS. It's that simple, folks!
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The opening: I did thrill at seeing that there's a woman as Speaker of the House. And I'm glad Bush celebrated the accomplishment.

The economy: 7.2 million new jobs so far. Low unemployment. Wages are rising? Was that thanks to the minimum wage? And if more enterprise means that the CEO earns 400 times more than one of their employees for being a cheerleader in a suit, is that really the type of growth we need?

Okay, the President cut the deficit in half three years ahead of schedule.

Earmarks: end them. Hooray. Yes, end the earmarks. Now, if everyone is doing them, why is everyone standing up to approve that they be eliminated. Someone should be hanging their heads in shame.

Senator Kennedy looks ill. Then again, he's looked that way ever since I could remember.

Senator Lieberman looks like he needs more fiber in his diet.

In a fine tribute to the fact that I don't know who the Secretary of Education was, I'm just now giggling over the fact that her name is Margaret Spellings. Do we have to call her Secretary Spellings? Can't we call her Miss Spellings? Or MisSpellings?

Affordable and available health care. Yes, we all want it.

Yes, yes, we need to support small businesses. What exactly can he do about info tech and hospitals?

Hmmm...everyone is loving immigration reform.

Yes, we know we need to move forward on energy reform. Hooray for that. I suppose the downside of SoUs is that you can't give numbers.

Wood chips. The President said "wood chips".

Reduce by 20 in 10. If we can develop hybrids that reduce gas usage by 30-40%, what is hogging the gas? Shouldn't we go for more than that in 10?

Look at that Senator from Iowa. Grassley. Is he greener on the other side. He looks pale from this side. He's happy as heck because Bush wants to invest in Ethanol.

I want to see Cheney and Pelosi mouth dirty jokes at each other. I think that would be fun.

Cheney and Bush synchronized their water drinking.

Hah! Nice jab on filibustering during Supreme Court hearings.

Did anyone notice that the military top brass appeared to be the last to stand when Bush said to win the war on terror, we must take the fight to the enemy? Could it be that in principle they agree that the War on Terror is a tad of a joke. Not that there's no threat, but homey declared a war that can have no clear victory. As certain as there's death and taxes. The streets of foundations of history are built with terror.

So, who was Lurch sitting next to Condie Rice? He looked a little dazed and dim while he clapped. I'm sure he's a brilliant man, but he looked like a mouth-breather in that moment.

So, about the justification for this war. I agree that we can just back out. And I don't think either Republican or Democrat will allow that, but suggesting that not following his plan is not supporting the troops would imply that he hasn't been supporting the troops for the past three years. Oh.

He mentioned Iran about 4 times? Wow, I guess that country is next. Though I don't know if he can engage them in conflict by the end of his term.

I am thinking Iraq will be more than happy to take over their government, Mr. President. Whether they continue to be our close ally may be another thing altogether.

The notion that we will recruit more civilians to work over in Iraq is intriguing. Will they be paid more than our solidiers? Probably.

I don't know if we can ever be spared from danger.

Nancy Pelosi's face continues to shrivel. And she turns the page to read his speech. Either that or she had her assistant print out the emails.

Lurch has a pinky ring! Ew!

I think Pelosi is chewing a hole in her inner lip and cheek.

Every time I've heard about Aids in Africa, it's just been "Aids" ...in Africa. I haven't heard "HIV-Aids".

Just what is Pelosi chewing on? Is she a teeth grinder when she sleeps?

Cheney looks like he's waiting for a kick from the pacemaker.

Laura Bush is having fun sitting next to that tall, handsome black man. Mutumbo is twice as tall as everyone else.

Did Wesley Autrie just do the kiss 'n point to President Bush? Did he say "you the man"? Cheney looks amused.

Tommy Reiman. Nicely done. But I bet it sure feels weird to have all these politicians who avoided military service look up and smile at you. Some of their smiles looked Stepfordesque.


I loved Jim Webb's response, which I heard on NPR instead of watching it.
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It appears a number of Methodists are against SMU being the site of the Bush library. Here's the site featuring the petition.

Oh my

Nov. 22nd, 2006 07:54 am
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So, Obermann discussed the "Bush Was Right" video that the Right Brothers have made to "prove" that...well the song title says it all. Obermann offers his video for it.

The original is here.

Man, it makes me yearn for the days of, "if you ride alone, you ride with Hitler!" You just can't get good propaganda these days.

I don't know what Franken on Air America said, but Obermann didn't sound like he was screeching about the video.

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