Saturday, May 2, 2009

Surprise Factor -1000

Survey: Support for terror suspect torture differs among the faithful

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The more often Americans go to church, the more likely they are to support the torture of suspected terrorists, according to a new survey.

More than half of people who attend services at least once a week -- 54 percent -- said the use of torture against suspected terrorists is "often" or "sometimes" justified. Only 42 percent of people who "seldom or never" go to services agreed, according to the analysis released Wednesday by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

White evangelical Protestants were the religious group most likely to say torture is often or sometimes justified -- more than six in 10 supported it. People unaffiliated with any religious organization were least likely to back it. Only four in 10 of them did.

The analysis is based on a Pew Research Center survey of 742 American adults conducted April 14-21. It did not include analysis of groups other than white evangelicals, white non-Hispanic Catholics, white mainline Protestants and the religiously unaffiliated, because the sample size was too small.

read the rest

Hat tip to DaringFireball

Iron Birds of a Titanium Feather

Holy crap. Go for a quick swim in the Lake and find out who the Right's dredged up to be the head teabagger.

The guy is a spectacular tool of polished steel... kinda like a sound (word used decisively) for a huge elephant.

Man... they's gettin a might weird over there in the elephant pen... poo a-flyin every whichaway.

Funny thing... this guy is so reminiscent... and there's that video-game tie-in again. Teeeeensy tiny little world these folks live in. You find the same set of identifiers again and again.

Local Chatter

(reading local noise-sources in town)

*Y*A*W*N*

Compare and Contrast

Young Republican


vs

Young Americans serving their county in Iraq as National Guardsmen


This young gentleman had done a tour, was back in the US and got called back up. No complaining, he saddled up and went. He makes me endlessly proud.

For our newly-jailed drug kingpins

Bet this helps pass the cell time

Beauty Queen Boob Job



Musto tears it up. Love it.


(graphic courtesy of AmericaBlog)

Michele Bachman is 'a buffoon'



I think it's great that she's making it so clear why she shouldn't (ever) be re-elected. Even the Muskrat had better handlers than this.

The Slow, Agonizing Death of the Republican Party

From The Agonist

Everyone says the transformation of Senator Arlen Specter from a Republican to a Democrat represents the frustration of a political moderate in an arch-conservative party. This misses the point, because there is nothing moderate about Arlen Specter’s political beliefs. Like Joe Lieberman, he has reserved for himself the right to vote his conscience, which means he will hardly be a staunch Democrat in favor of workers rights against corporate interests, or even in favor of President Obama’s Supreme Court nominees. What Arlen Specter does have, along with Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins and a few other Republicans, is a last little shred of sanity and rationality. These people are not at home in a party that is suffering from mass delusions.
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Absolutely true. I was stunned to see Specter cross the aisle. Kind of like when crazy uncle Frank quits kicking the dog and begins petting the cat. Fear.
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We also hear that the Republican Party is shrinking into a Southern redoubt as a marginalized, regional party. This is true, but something much more interesting is going on here. We are watching a major national political party disappear from the American scene. The Republicans are in their Cheshire Cat phase – all that is left to see are the inane grins of politicians who have lost all connection to the real world. They wear the rictus of a doomed and dying political force that is paying the price for decades of hypocrisy and deceit. They have peddled the elixir of deception for so long that they have begun to drink heavily from their own product, and now it is too late. There are barely any Republican politicians on the national scene who are not irrevocablydisconnected from reality.
-

The critical question, therefore, is not how will the Republican Party make a comeback, but what will take its place. What will happen with the 20% of Americans who are living in a fantasy world where the rest of America are their mortal enemies out to deprive them of their livelihood, their homes, and their safety? What will happen with the corporations who still wield immense power but haven’t the Republicans around to do their bidding? What will happen with the religious extremists who expect the Republicans to save this country from moral decay?

These are forces for potential disruption and even danger to America. They need to be brought back into the body politic, given a voice, but like everyone else they should be expected to operate in the real world where compromises are required and where we all can agree on what is up and what is down. Under the best of circumstances, this new political party will offer ideas and policies that counterbalance those of the Democrats, and at some point its candidates will be rewarded national office once voters can trust in their competence and sanity. This new political party might be called Republican, though the odds from a marketing standpoint are against that, but every American will be able to sigh with relief that is completely unlike today’s Republican Party in every way possible.

-

Go read the whole article - superb.

Sunday cartoon a day early

Love it.

That's mah kinda God.

Red Meat - read it, live it.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Japanese Myths... YIPE

Kanamara Matsuri.

Go read about it at LaughingSquid.

yowza

Virginia Foxx - "Shepard's murder.... a hoax"

The Colorado Independent has a great article that includes response from Shepard's family.

To borrow a line from The Green Mile, Foxx's cheese has slipped off her cracker - and 'cracker' is so apropo.

Here’s what Foxx said on the House floor:
“The hate crimes bill that’s called the Matthew Shepard bill is named after a very unfortunate incident that happened where a young man was killed, but we know that that young man was killed in the commitment of robbery. It wasn’t because he was gay. This — the bill was named for him, the hate crimes bill was named for him, but it’s really a hoax that that continues to be used as an excuse for passing these bills.”
This woman is a vicious monster and needs to be recalled - immediately.

Sean Hannity is a Pussy

No other way to put it.

First he comes out and says he'd be 'willing to be waterboarded for charity' - then a week later his surrogates are desperately trying to beg off.

Coward.

Here's a challenge for all the breast-beating bozos in Longmont - I'll gladly go head-to-head (so to speak) with any of you to see who 'holds up' longer under this kind of torture. We could raise some good money I'm sure since I'm certain there's plenty of wingnuts that would pay handsomely to watch me get tortured. Also, I suspect the 'loyal opposition' will fold like crepe paper in 15 seconds or less.

Who's in?

Ladies?

Denver Navy Week

Voice of Longmont has the goods - check em out!

Soul Priority

Bruce A. Jacobs at aliasbruce:

So I'm casting in a trout stream a few evenings ago. It's a downright holy beautiful dusk, about 75 degrees, the light softening into dull orange as the last of the sun filters through the contours of a riverside cornfield littered with straw-colored stalks from last year's crop. The water is ice-clear and swishing-fast and I can feel its cold through my waders. A friend told me the fishing would be incredible for these few days after the big rain that swept the muck out of the stream, and she was right: the trout are leaping out of the water for mayflies, and I already have a hefty brown on my stringer that I'll gratefully take home for dinner after having returned maybe a dozen smaller trout to the water.

I am wading back upstream toward the riverbank trail to head home, and I have basically let go of fishing for the day but I figure, hell, why not cast my way back. So as I slosh upstream I make maybe my second or third casual cast, and a few feet from my left leg -- whammo! -- fish on. Nice one. Whoa. Really nice one. I give it line, play the fish out, try to avoid doing anything stupid, and I clumsily if effectively land it, and, man, it's an even bigger brown than the other, just gorgeous, fat and the length of half my arm and wet-sheened with its brown and yellow skin and red and black speckles. And now, suddenly, I have dinner for two days instead of one. I thank the river and this trout -- which is the least one can do before eating a creature -- and I resume wading upstream, shaking my head. I'd been barely fishing at that point. I'd thought I was done. Who knew?

All of which is a way of saying that time spent without intent is a good thing.


There's much more

Dang Trains

Interesting site:

DangTrains.com

Some good, common-sense ideas. Give it a read.

Hat tip to Paul Tiger!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Ok, let's play 'Who's Lying?"

The recent fly-by of the Statue of Liberty (supposedly for a promo photo update) was supposedly announced to public officials:

Caldera did say that the mission was approved by him last week and that the correct authorities (state and local) were notified.
WTF?? But NY Mayor Bloomberg clearly didn't know about it... you'd think if anyone would...

Oh, but there's more:
These authorities admitted to that but indicated they had been told to keep the issue quiet by the FAA and if anyone inquired about the flight they should be referred to the FAA Security Coordinator. Further, the flight would occur in the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty.
From ohmygov.com:

FROM: FAA Air Traffic System Operations Security (AJR-2)

SUBJECT: Flight Notification- New York City -Statue of Liberty Photo Op, Upper New York Bay / Newark Bay on April 27, 2009, 10:00L. (amended 4/23)

The information in this document is considered FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY, and should only be shared with persons with a need to know. Information in this document shall not be released to the public or media.

1. The Department of Defense (DOD), in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), will conduct a flying photo op in the New York City Area on April 27, 2009 involving a transport and fighter aircraft. Below are the details regarding the operation.

• Date: Monday April 27, 2009 (Primary), April 28 or April 30 (weather backup dates)
• Number / Type Aircraft: 1 VC-25 and 2 F-16s. Actual photo op will only have VC25 and 1 F16.
• Callsign: VENUS01
• Departure point: ADW
• Arrival point: ADW
• Flight Plan: Crews will file two separate IFR flight plans:
ADW-JFK: KADW.. PALEO V44 SIE CAMRN4 JFK
Requested altitude FL190B210
EWR-ADW: KEWR..EWR7.BIGGY J75 MXE V378 BAL KADW

• Planned Departure Time: 0930 approximately
• Planned Time On Photo Op Location: 10:00 -10:30L.
• Planned Photo Op Altitude: 1000-1500ft
• Number of Passes: 2, possibly 3

The aircraft will depart ADW via IFR clearance as a three (3) ship formation to Sea Isle (SIE). At SIE one (1) of the fighters will leave the flight and return to ADW IFR via SIE ATR V308 BILIT ADW.

The VC25 and 1 F16 will proceed IFR to CAMRN intersection south of JFK. In the vicinity of CAMRN intersection the aircraft will cancel IFR and proceed VFR with New York TRACON (N90) towards the Verranzano Bridge. N90 will hand the aircraft off to Newark Tower (EWR) for the flight in the Upper NY and Newark Bay. Upon completion of the final pass the aircraft will be treated as a EWR departure and pickup an IFR clearance back to ADW.

The photo op portion of the flight will be VFR in accordance with the specified ground track as per the attached map (Attachment 1). On the northbound flight segments the fighter aircraft will be offset to the east by approximately ½ mile. During the southbound flight segment the fighter will re-position to remain offset to the aircraft within the depicted box.

The operation will be monitored by FAA Air Traffic Security Coordinators (ATSC) at the Domestic Event Network at FAA Headquarters from start to finish. Any questions or issues can be directed to the FAA ATSC at the DEN. The FAA ATSC can be reached at (202) 493-5107.

The Public Affairs posture for this effort is passive. No media or press releases are planned. Please direct all media inquiries to the FAA Air Traffic Security Coordinator at (202) 493-5107. Due to the possibility of public concern regarding DOD aircraft flying at low levels, coordination with Federal, State and Local law enforcement agencies, emergency operations centers and aviation units has been accomplished.

//SIGNED//

JAMES J. JOHNSTON, FAA Air Traffic
AJR-2 System Operations Security
---------

Hm. Could this possibly be some hard-right asshole in the Pentagon trying to stir up trouble?

People were threatened into silence about it.

Trouble is, NY cops don't take threats well:

The NYPD was so upset about the demand for secrecy that Police Commissioner Ray Kelly vowed never to follow such a directive again and he accused the feds of inciting fears of a 9/11 replay.

"Did it show an insensitivity to the psychic wounds New York City has after 9/11? Absolutely. No questions about it. It was quite insensitive," Kelly said.
Yo Ray! Of COURSE they were trying to incite fears of a 9/11 replay! That's all the lunatic fringe has left - bullshit and fear.

Personally, I'm glad this happened - now there's a reason to investigate, find the shithead that thought they could get away with this and nail their balls up.

News flash to all you screamin' whackjobs out there - Obama won the election. If you keep fucking with our country it's not going to go well for you. People won't play along like they did for Bushco.

Welcome back to a nation of laws not men.

I look forward to seeing the FAA jerkoff that kept this secret booted out of his cushy little sinecure.

Welcome Back

Eric Schwartz

Why Do Republicans Hate Reagan?

George W. Bush's Justice Department said subjecting a person to the near drowning of waterboarding was not a crime and didn't even cause pain, but Ronald Reagan's Justice Department thought otherwise, prosecuting a Texas sheriff and three deputies for using the practice to get confessions. Federal prosecutors secured a 10-year sentence against the sheriff and four years in prison for the deputies. That 1983 case was never mentioned in the four Bush administration "enhanced interrogation" opinions released last week.

Hat tip to Drudge Retort

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Mess That Is Texas

From Alternet:

Why Is Texas So Psycho?
By Jim Hightower, Creators Syndicate
Posted on April 25, 2009, Printed on April 27, 2009
http://www.alternet.org/story/138306/


Texas politics has long been a source of great amusement for the people of our state, but it's often a source of bafflement for people beyond our borders. So, sometimes there's a need to explain what's going on here, and this is one of those times. In this case, the explanation is simple: Our governor is a goober.

Texans have known this for some time, but Rick Perry -- whose chief claim to fame had been that he has a spectacular head of hair -- was unknown outside the state, so he was our little secret. Now, however, Perry's gooberness has gone viral. He's a YouTube phenomenon and a new darling of the GOP kingmaker, Rush Limbaugh.

He broke into national consciousness on April 15, when he spoke at one of the many "teabag" rallies that Republican operatives set up around the country to protest Barack Obama's deficit spending. Appearing in Austin before a boisterous crowd of about a thousand people who were fuming about everything from gun control to the Wall Street bailout, the governor opened with this shot: "I'm sure you're not just a bunch of right-wing extremists. But if you are, I'm with you."

Then came the thought that earned him YouTuber-of-the-Day and a favorable mention from Lord Limbaugh: Texas just, By God, might secede from the union if Washington keeps messing with us.

Read the rest


I think it's indicative that when Dems were unhappy with the Bush administration, we wanted to be rid of him... but when the GOP is unhappy with Obama, they want to be rid of the country.

So much for 'loving your country' - I guess that line was just bullshit when they waved it at the Dems.

Now we know who will 'cut and run' and 'hate America' at the first opportunity.

Thanks Tricky Ricky, now we know right where y'all stand.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Practical Solution

from Spiegel Online:

Dutch Use Teen Repellent

The Dutch city of Rotterdam has begun using the mosquito, a "teen repellent" is sound device intended to discourage groups of kids from loitering in the streets, making a nuisance of themselves or engaging in anti-social behavior. "It sucks! It gives me a headache," said one child who has heard it. The device emits an annoying sound with a frequency that can generally be heard only by people under the age of 25. "It's like when you've been listening to loud music for a long time and then you stop," said another. "This buzzing sound."

hat tip to Drudge Retort

Hm. More background.

Bit by bit, we regiment the world.

But this is a wonderfully gentle concept and Lucas portrayed it in THX 1138 when the protagonist was imprisoned in a 'white limbo'. The escape plan was simple - walk out.

Interesting how ideas hang around for a long time, then finally manifest.