Friday, April 30, 2010
raising the bar, not arizona
the law, which requires police to seek proof of an individual's immigration status if they have a reasonable suspicion that the person is in the country illegally, is seen by many as targeting minorities for racial profiling. the law also makes it a misdemeanor to fail to provide proof, if asked, that the person is legally in the united states.
"this law encourages second-class treatment of individuals based on the color of their skin, and that is unacceptable," says aba president carolyn b. lamm, who in a statement calls the recently signed measure "draconian" and "likely unconstitutional."
specifically, it implicates equal protection and due process concerns, threatening nearly half a century of civil rights progress in our country, she continues. "it is, quite simply put, a law based on prejudice and fear, one whose purpose is to be divisive."
national output grew at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.2 percent last quarter, the commerce department reported friday, after growth of 5.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2009 and 2.2 percent in the third quarter.
the steady growth has quelled fears that the downturn is not quite over.
the dark side of the arizona immigration bill
tweet of the day
"every asshole who ever chanted 'drill baby drill' should have to report to the gulf coast today for cleanup duty"
Thursday, April 29, 2010
had a good chuckle tonight
quote of the day
boy oh boycott
best western international, inc.
6201 n. 24th parkway
phoenix, az 85016
cold stone creamery
16101 north 82nd street
scottsdale, az 85260
dial soap products
15501 north dial boulevard
scottsdale, arizona 85260-1619
fax: (602) 754-1098
14455 n. hayden rd.
scottsdale, az 85260
19601 north 27th avenue
phoenix, az 85027
2727 north central avenue
phoenix, az 85004-1158
111 w. rio salado parkway
tempe, az 85281
the links take you to each corporation's contact page. please, feel free to write/phone them, but as always, be polite!
how stupid are the repubbblicans?
since the arizona immigration law passed, i’ve been thinking about what’s going to happen the first time she’s pulled over and asked for her papers. the results of my thought experiment aren’t pretty. to say that she’ll be unintimidated by the local cops is a gross understatement. my concern is for the officer who pulls her over, as well as the police department and town that she’ll sue. life gets a little dull for the retired, and the family joke is that mom has a titanium grudge carrier, so i expect she’ll do her part to bankrupt her local municipality, and enjoy doing it.
mom’s a proud goldwater republican. she was happy with reagan, voted for bush ii in 2000 (but not in ‘04), and has long been active in the local republican party. but i can say with absolute certainty that she will not vote for a republican, for any office, ever again. she’s the proudest person i know—proud of her family, her achievements in life, and her mexican heritage. and, whatever else this new law is, it is profoundly disrespectful. i don’t know if this law will kill the republican party in arizona, but i can assure you that they’re already dead to her.
it's disrespectful to an entire race of people who want to live life as americans. there is no way in hell that america is about proving you are an american. that in itself is the very antithesis of liberty and freedom.
the gop has shot itself in the foot, and has hastened its demise by several years w/this law.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
skippy looks at books: inside out
we were fortunate enough to receive an advance copy of his next book, inside out, which mr. eisler graciously sent to us. we are happy to report that inside out is as taut, fast-paced and relevant to today's issues as his previous work fault line.
in this new book we still follow the adventures of ben treven, the hero of fault line. ben is a special ops, assigned to a super secret outfit of soldiers that are sent to do the dirty work of keeping democracy viable, with all the good and bad that such a position implies.
but ben (who had to struggle w/keeping his brother alex alive after his stumbling onto a secret software security package) is young and still forming his emotional core; he wrestles w/his own demons of right and wrong even as he carries out his orders from his commander.
the premise of inside out is one that every lefty in blogtopia (and yes, we coined that phrase) will relate to: abu ghraib. presumably another special forces black op kept tapes of all the the atrocities committed therein, and now wants to black mail the u.s. government w/them. it's up to ben to find this blackmailer and neutralize him.
in our minds, ben treven is like a younger, less mature (in that he's young and still forming himself) version of lee childs' wonderful jack reacher character. like reacher, ben is highly skilled and able, world-traveled and intelligent, and ready to be deadly if the situation calls for it. treven is partnered this time w/a beautiful fbi agent (are there any other kind in these books?) and must stay one step ahead of other operatives from various agencies who wouldn't mind killing ben and the feeb just to hang the mess on them.
again, mr. eisler writes with a great pace, and makes everything very plausible. as he used to be a covert operative with the cia himself, the details of surveillance, logistics and gunplay ring true. and the moral and philosophical questions that pervade the story-telling lift mr. eisler's work a notch above the usual bang-you're-dead kind of book usually found in this genre.
in fact, the ending of the story (which we won't give away here) is a shocking cold-water-on-the-soul wake up call to anybody living in this country, and certainly not what one would expect from a good-guy-v-bad-guy-shoot-em-up thriller.
we are quite pleased to report that inside out, which will be available in stores on june 29, is every bit as satisfying as fault line. plus, there are more inside-blogging references (did you know marcy wheeler was married? neither did we! lol!)
we look forward to finding and reading mr. eisler's previous work, as well as any new ben treven novels that are forth coming.
i read the news today oboy
more @ media matters
it's a living
brown skinned people didn't take away your job
brown skinned people didn't tank your 401(k).... (see above)
brown skinned people didn't give their executives millions in compensation while firing thousands (see above)
brown skinned people didn't hide billions of dollars offshore in order to not pay taxes (see above)
brown skinned people didn't almost destroy the world's economy hedging bets on credit default swaps (see above)
see a pattern here? where should the real anger be directed?
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
hell has officially frozen over
arizona is absolutely crazy
on saturday, “at the center for arizona policy family dinner before 1600 guests,” brewer signed sb 1305, the first-in-the nation bill that would prohibit insurers in the state- run health care exchange “from providing coverage for abortions unless the coverage is offered as a separate optional rider for which an additional insurance premium is charged.”
the new arizona law is a radical mini stupak. it prevents insurers from offering abortion services, except under the most extreme circumstances, even if only private money were used to pay for those services. most if not all women in the exchange would only be able to purchase coverage through an impractical, separate abortion “rider” or leave the exchange entirely and find coverage in the shrinking individual health insurance market. since it’s unlikely that many insurers will offer abortion riders or that women will purchase them in anticipation of needing an abortion — in fact, “in the five states where abortion riders are currently required, no insurance company offers them” — the arizona law will severely disadvantage poorer women who would likely have to pay out of pocket for abortion services. - wonkroom
the american people "want us to get something done," sen. george voinovich, r-ohio, said in explaining why he would eventually join democrats in insisting that the bill be debated on the floor.
voinovich, who is not seeking re-election in november, would not say exactly how long he would wait before switching his vote but said, "i have an idea of how much time it takes to cut a deal." he also said he expects "a whole bunch" of other republicans to make the same decision.
separated at birth?
check up for chickens advocate sue lowden
“we need to keep the pressure up to get a deal,” said the democratic aide.
reid held a live quorum call on monday evening to bring senators to the floor, interrupting their schedules and sending a message to lawmakers who voted to block debate of wall street reform.
reid also voted against the motion because of a procedural technicality that will allow him to bring up for reconsideration.
democratic aides said reid would call senators to reconsider the motion to begin debate of the reform bill on tuesday.
reid also plans to file a motion monday evening to end the gop filibuster. that would set up a third vote on wednesday to end the filibuster.
a second democratic aide said leaders wanted to focus public attention on gop “obstruction.”
it's kentucky derby week
Monday, April 26, 2010
matt taibbi vs. goldman sachs
matt taibbi. marry me.
...morally, however, the goldman sachs case may turn into a final referendum on the greed-is-good ethos that conquered america sometime in the 80s – and in the years since has aped other horrifying american trends such as boybands and reality shows in spreading across the western world like a venereal disease.
...even if he stands to make a buck at it, even your average used-car salesman won't sell some working father a car with wobbly brakes, then buy life insurance policies on that customer and his kids. but this is done almost as a matter of routine in the financial services industry, where the attitude after the inevitable pileup would be that that family was dumb for getting into the car in the first place. caveat emptor, dude!
people have to understand this randian mindset is now ingrained in the american character. you have to live here to see it. there's a hatred toward "moochers" and "parasites" – the tea party movement, which is mainly a bunch of pissed off suburban white people whining about minorities consuming social services, describes the battle as being between "water-carriers" and "water-drinkers". and regulation of any kind is deeply resisted, even after a disaster as sweeping as the 2008 crash - the guardian
mrs dbk* and i have had a few laughs over those messages. i didn't bother to tell my ex-girlfriend whom i've never met that i am a very married, very middle-aged man in minnesota (her area code is in massachusetts) and she had been texting the wrong number. i'd have texted her back to correct her error right away, but, with my cellphone plan, text messages cost extra and i didn't feel like spending the money. also, i was very entertained and was hoping to get even more messages. she stopped at five, though. i assume she was either over me or had figured out her mistake.
what is the proper textiquette in this situation? do you just ignore the messages or do you send a text to tell the other party that they're texting a stranger?
*skippy says all posts must have links so that they are proper blog posts, and the more links the bloggier it looks. that's not an actual photo of mrs dbk, but it's close enough.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
For Want of a Step, the Battle was Lost
environmental news stories sunday
there's no "plan b" for what to do with nuclear waste. - the environmental protection agency estimates that spent fuel stored at new jersey's four nuclear power plants will remain dangerous to humans for at least 10,000 years. but the problem of storing spent fuel continues to plague lawmakers. - atlantic city press
livestock waste found to foul sierra waters. - after 10 years of fieldwork and 4,500 miles of backpacking, derlet has learned – after analyzing hundreds of samples dipped from backcountry lakes and streams – is that parts of the high sierra are not nearly as pristine as they look. - sacramento bee
water tests too costly, n.m. says. - the christie administration has backed off plans to require testing and treatment of drinking water for perchlorate, a chemical in fertilizer and rocket fuel that has been found in some private and public wells in north jersey and poses health risks for pregnant women and infants - bergen county record
biotech crops go before supreme court this week. - the u.s. supreme court is considering genetically engineered crops for the first time, in a case that has divided conventional and organic farmers - des moines register
settlement falls short of addressing kalamazoo river pollution problems. - a federal bankruptcy judge on friday signed off on a settlement between the u.s. government and lyondell chemical co., relinquishing the houston-based petrochemical giant from any future cleanup liabilities at the kalamazoo river superfund site. - kalamazoo gazette
california free to ban downer cows in food supply - for now. - it's been two years since a covertly recorded videotape of non-ambulatory cows being abused at a slaughterhouse led to the largest beef recall in the nation's history, but the scandal is still having repercussions. - bakersfield californian
icij names winners of 2010 daniel pearl awards for outstanding international investigative reporting. - a gutsy, collaborative series by four european news outlets about toxic waste dumping in africa was one winner of the 2010 daniel pearl awards for outstanding international investigative reporting - center for public integrity
morocco leads the green revolution. - the moroccan government has a plan to take on air pollution, climate change, and other environmental challenges. it is a multi-billion dollar series of projects that will set new standards and restrictions on pollution, and for the first time implement so-called "green taxes" for violators - al jazeera
rooftop farming booming in new york. - urban farming is a growth industry in new york city's concrete jungle, and with little open land free agriculturalists and beekeepers have taken to the rooftops to pursue their passion. - afp
barge explodes in mississippi river. - the united states coast guard – already battling an oil spill off the louisiana coast – responded to an unrelated tank barge explosion saturday approximately 72 miles up the mississippi river from new orleans - afp
vog smothering big isle. - it has been 27 years since kīlauea started erupting and two since a new vent at halema'uma'u crater opened, doubling the amount of emissions and changing life for the thousands who live in pāhala and other rural communities downwind from the volcano. - honolulu advertiser
green surge as main parties try to attract eco-vote. - environmental issues will be pushed up the agenda in the last 10 days of the election campaign, as Britain's major parties scuffle to attract the eco-vote, and the greens remain on course to return their first mp to parliament. - london independent
how much radiation can we take? - scrap dealer devair ferreira was intrigued by the blue glow of the radioactive caesium chloride salt. he kept it in his dining room and invited friends and family to daub it on their bodies like glitter. within a month, ferreira's wife, niece and two of his employees had died and 249 people were contaminated - new scientist
bishop, chaffetz join water fight in congress. - currently, the clean water act allows federal regulation only for waterways that are "navigable." but that word would be removed by a bill introduced wednesday by house transportation and infrastructure committee chairman james oberstar, d-minn - salt lake deseret
Saturday, April 24, 2010
arizona's "immigration" law
Friday, April 23, 2010
All Politics are Local, Health-Care Edition
It’s official, "Visteon retirees have lost their health care benefits due to corporate greed." In wake of that announcement, we had Rep. Mike Pence and senatorial candidate John Hostettler make a visit to our nice community. What was the one thing they both had in common? They both believe the new health care reform bill should be repealed if the GOP is able to regain control of Congress.
I was working in the Wall Street area at the time of the Visteon IPO in mid-2000. They spent piles on the party, and gave freebies away to anyone who came by. (Not cars or car parts; caps and memorabilia like that.)
Strangely, an IPO for a car parts company where 99.44% of its business was to a company that made no secret of its need to cut costs wasn't considered strange ca. 2000-2001. (In fact, by that point Delphi was already down around 20% from its IPO price.) No one could have imagined that it would end badly.
For the employees, that is. The senior executives who dumped their stock into the IPO is another story.
tweet of the day
Thursday, April 22, 2010
rightnetwork...is not all right because it is "all right" (wing)
first there was conservative talk radio. now there is a new cable television network planned that will bring conservative programming to the tv screen.
it's called the rightnetwork, and actor kelsey grammer is the spokesperson for the new ultra-conservative channel. - nbc
if you look up the definition of evil in the dictionary
neither of these women knew about the other. but besides their similar narratives, they had something else in common: their health insurance carriers were subsidiaries of wellpoint, which has 33.7 million policyholders -- more than any other health insurance company in the united states.
the women paid their premiums on time. before they fell ill, neither had any problems with their insurance. initially, they believed their policies had been canceled by mistake.
they had no idea that wellpoint was using a computer algorithm that automatically targeted them and every other policyholder recently diagnosed with breast cancer. the software triggered an immediate fraud investigation, as the company searched for some pretext to drop their policies, according to government regulators and investigators.
once the women were singled out, they say, the insurer then canceled their policies based on either erroneous or flimsy information. wellpoint declined to comment on the women's specific cases without a signed waiver from them, citing privacy laws. - reuters
healthcare companies kill more americans than osama bin laden. why are these terrorist organizations still around?
happy earth day
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
a republicans take on how to pay for healthcare
call her and ask if you can donate some chickens to her campaign (since they are just the same as dollars.) - toll free number: (800) 983-6896
Republican Budget Control
There are nearly twice as many people making $100,000 or more per year in Gov. Chris Christie's administration than under his predecessor, according to an analysis by The Associated Press, which the governor's office disputed Monday.
The AP analysis found that while Christie, a Republican, is proposing laying off 1,300 state workers, he is spending nearly $2 million more on annual salaries than his predecessor, former Gov. Jon S. Corzine, a Democrat.
Believing that Republicans support small government and fiscal responsibility:
is she an anti-environmentalist? i dunno, alaska!
anti-environmentalism has no place in the discovery communications lineup. demand that the company cancel "sarah palin's alaska" before it airs.
the former partial-term alaska governor is reportedly getting paid $1.2 million per episode to host a television series called "sarah palin's alaska," to be broadcast on tlc, one of discovery communications' channels. and if palin runs for president in 2012, a show that provides her the opportunity to greenwash her environmental record on a mainstream, eco-friendly channel is downright dangerous.
here’s what sarah palin’s real alaska is:
- she accelerated alaska's cruel aerial wolf-hunting program while in office, introducing a $150 bounty for each slaughtered wolf's forelimb.
- she made a personal appeal to alaska voters to oppose a ballot measure that would have stopped the immense pebble mine operation from dumping cyanide and mining waste into streams that make their way to bristol bay, home to the largest sockeye salmon fishery in the world.
- when president bush finally agreed to list the polar bear as a threatened species in 2008 because of global warming's effects on its habitat, the governor sued to challenge the listing.
- armed with her "drill, baby, drill" catchphrase, palin called for opening the arctic national wildlife refuge and the cook inlet to oil and gas drilling.
gun pried from heston's cold, dead hands
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
skippy's tuesday night music club
robert leroy johnson (8 may 1911 – 16 august 1938)
sewage sludge contains everything the sewage treatment plant was able to remove from the sewage - plus every new chemical and pathogen formed in the mad synergy of this chemical soup, including virulent, antibiotic-resistant bacteria created through horizontal gene transfer.
san francisco public officials have helped the toxic sludge industry score a major victory in the bay area, where they've been able to convince hundreds of regional (non-organic) farmers to spread the hazardous material on farm land and pasture, and have actually been able to get city residents to take hundreds of thousands of pounds of toxic sludge and spread it over their backyard and community gardens.
stewart and colbert 2012!
they'll be running, but, unfortunately not for the presidential ticket...but on comedy central.
the network has signed the two hosts – who both attract more young viewers than even the late-night shows on the broadcast networks – to new contracts that will keep them in the 11 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. weeknight slots through the next presidential election in 2012. - nytimesi, for one, am so pleased that these two "real journalists" will be on the job...taking on the tough issues and asking the tough questions where others fear to tread.
the drug addled gasbag (rush limbaugh)
you know, a couple of days after the health care bill had been signed into law obama ran around all over the country saying, “hey, you know, i’m looking around. the earth hadn’t opened up. there’s no armageddon out there. the birds are still chirping.” i think the earth has opened up. god may have replied. - think progressi'm thinking that its iceland taking revenge on europe (and the u.s.) for destroying their economy.
the 2008–2010 icelandic financial crisis is a major ongoing economic crisis in iceland that involves the collapse of all three of the country's major banks following their difficulties in refinancing their short-term debt and a run on deposits in the united kingdom. relative to the size of its economy, iceland’s banking collapse is the largest suffered by any country in economic history - wiki
Monday, April 19, 2010
skippy's monday nite music club
steven paul "elliott" smith (6 august 1969 - 21 october 2003) - "waltz #2"
the geeks shall inherit the earth
even mrs. skippy, who disdains sci-fi, enjoys matt smith (& karen gillan as the new companion). high praise, indeed!
there's no 'i' in 'team,' but there's two in 'idiot!'
Sunday, April 18, 2010
skippy's sunday nite music club
elvis aron presley (8 january 1935 – 16 august 1977) tonight, he's performing "in the ghetto", one of my favorite songs of his.
environmental news stories sunday
a lawmaker's brainchild, earth day turns 40, having spawned environmental movement. - one u.s. senator and a core of young organizers turned april 22, 1970, into the day the environmental movement was born - mcclatchy
operation green. - on the first earth day in 1970, american soldiers were returning from war and struggling to readjust to life at home. veterans today are also returning from foreign wars, and many find environmental work and activism helps them make the transition - living on earth
congressman denies knowing his wife lobbied for landman group. - at the same time liberal upstate new york rep. maurice hinchey, championed strict control over gas drilling in the marcellus shale, his wife lobbied for a texas-based landmen association whose members represent gas drillers securing leases from new york property owners. - dcbureau
arab-israeli water feuds get worse. - israel's feud with the palestinians over dwindling west bank water resources stymied an eu effort this week to secure a water management strategy for the mediterranean region where 290 million people face shortages by 2025 - upi
is this the end of migration? - climate change is affecting bird behaviour at a staggering rate; some 20 billion have already changed their flight plans. scientists insist the consequences of rising temperatures have barely begun to scratch the surface of birds' behavioural patterns. but changes are becoming increasingly dramatic, with radical population shifts just one known effect. - london independent
gore takes cash for water campaign from chemical firm. - al gore has some explaining to do after his environmental organisation took money to raise awareness about the need for clean water from a controversial chemicals company involved in the aftermath of one of the world's worst pollution disasters. - london independent
growing concern in the water. - alarmed by latest research, the obama administration is conducting a broad review of the toxic weed killer atrazine that could lead to tighter restrictions on its use - chicago tribune
health insurers make big bucks from big macs. - a new study has found that $1.88 billion from the health and life insurance industry is backing the top five publicly traded fast food chains. - scientific american
Saturday, April 17, 2010
skippy's saturday nite music club
marvin pentz gay, jr. (2 april 1939 – 1 april 1984) aka marvin gaye. "heard it through the grapevine live at montreux"
release the kagan!
but it's precisely her experience at harvard that most qualifies her for the current supreme court vacancy. surely a woman who can tame the fierce passions of warring conservative and liberal factions at harvard law can help mold a cohesive majority at the supreme court -- something even justice john paul stevens was rarely able to do. part of this, as stevens noted, is because the court has veered rightward, but it is also because the justices as a whole have not remembered their own institutional interest in restrained decisions. at harvard, kagan reminded the combatants that they were ultimately taking the school down with them. she built a reputation as an honest broker who identified common interests and advanced the ball.
like harvard, the supreme court has been damaged as an institution by perpetually dissolving into warring camps. a string of 5-4 decisions on either side of an issue merely prolongs the dispute and creates more work for lawyers and political fundraisers. how can americans have any hope that the constitution actually stands for something if its interpretation constantly varies with the election results?
this is not the president's first appointment, nor likely his last. but it is the appointment that could most influence the success of his health care initiative, which is about to go whizz-bang from the states to the supreme court. it's exactly for this kind of case that some conservatives on the court have been sharpening their teeth, for decades. they want to reverse constitutional law a century and return to an era when state and federal legislation protecting health and workers rights was uniformly struck down as unconstitutional. as reported by jeffrey rosen in a 2005 article for the new york times magazine, there is a "constitution in exile" movement that aims to dismantle the regulatory state and return to the social darwinism embodied in the court's 1905 decision, lochner v. new york, which struck down maximum working hours for bakers.
it is precisely at such a constitutional turning point that someone with the social intelligence (read: political smarts) of an elena kagan can make a huge difference. the best example of this, ironically, is earl warren. a conservative governor nominated by a conservative president, chief justice warren worked the justices like a seasoned pol to unify the court in unanimous or near-unanimous decisions on some of its most controversial cases: desegregation, court-appointed counsel for accused felons, and school prayer. contrary to its reputation, the warren court was not so much liberal as national: it wanted the bill of rights to apply equally to all americans in all states.
as for critics of kagan's nomination like greenwald, who find her too cozy with national security absolutists, they should remember that earl warren himself oversaw the internment of japanese americans from california during world war ii. some constitutional scholars believe it was precisely because warren had participated in such executive actions during wartime that he became even more devoted to protecting the rights of minorities. perhaps elena kagan's experience crafting the obama administration's wartime response to terrorists will help her draw a clearer line in protecting the constitutional rights of individual citizens against a natural security leviathan.
as an aide in president bill clinton’s white house, she crafted an agreement with republican senator john mccain on legislation to let the food and drug administration regulate tobacco.
with president barack obama considering kagan for a supreme court nomination, her reputation as a bridge builder may be a selling point. the 49-year-old solicitor general, the administration’s top supreme court lawyer, would succeed retiring justice john paul stevens, the chief tactician of the court’s liberal wing.
“if you are able to get along with the harvard faculty, you can probably tame a den of lions,” said miguel estrada, a washington appellate lawyer and classmate of kagan’s at harvard law in the 1980s.
consensus-building skills will be a priority for obama in selecting a supreme court nominee, according to an administration official who spoke on condition of anonymity. obama is planning to meet with a bipartisan group of senate leaders next week to discuss the vacancy. the white house declined to comment on kagan’s prospects, and she declined to be interviewed.
fighting such detentions has been a major cause of many legal scholars, rights groups, and democrats. she also is paying the price for positions taken by the obama justice department, which has continued to defend bush administration legal positions on warrantless wiretapping, detainees, and government secrecy.
“they’re upholding all these reprehensible bush antiterrorism policies that have been condemned by every human rights and civil liberties organization in the country,’’ said francis boyle, a professor of international law at the university of illinois. “there has been no retreat by kagan. she could have backed off on all these bush positions and she refused.’’
it's earth day weekend
if the earth and the environment aren't cooperating
virtually all of europe's major airports remain closed as a huge plume of volcanic ash drifts south and east across the continent from iceland. - bbc
you think some folks would start wondering what to do when cities are under water due to climate change?
Friday, April 16, 2010
skippy's friday nite music club
lowell thomas george or lowell george (april 13, 1945 – june 29, 1979)
what do we want? deep fried snickers bars! when do we want them? now!
which one? the fat one?
here's a aggregation of their posts concerning the nutty lt. col. who refuses to be deployed to afghanistan because obama hasn't "proved" he's a citizen and therefore the lawful president. you'll notice that these military lawyers think the guy is a, quote, guano-crazy birther, unquote:
515 u.s. 177, 180-81 (1995). (note that ultimately, however, the supremes rejected application of the de facto officer doctrine in the ryder case.)
it looks like the orders that ltc lakin has expressed his intention to disobey (available in redacted form here) were issued for the commander, walter reed army medical center. i don’t see why those orders would be invalid even if the birthers’ guano crazy theories were true. even a service secretary appointed by the current president would seem to fall within the de facto officer doctrine — indeed, the kind of chaos that would result from saying that no order issued to anyone in the military is valid is precisely what the de facto officer doctrine is designed to prevent.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
skippy's thursday nite music club
kurt donald cobain
20 february 1967 – 5 april 1994
he forever captured the teen spirit.
building a bridge to the 19th century
the dallas morning news has more:
"i saw nooses, swastikas on the wall," said mathis, a father of three. "it was horrible."
he said that despite the abuse, he still works for the company to help support his family, even though his sister and mother have been threatened.
in all, eight employees had their complaints upheld by the eeoc last month. their attorneys say they have identified discrimination, harassment and threatening behavior in turner's other texas facilities.
the abuse in east texas is nothing new, said the rev. peter johnson, a dallas civil rights activist who spoke at the news conference.
"east texas is mississippi 50 years ago," he said. "i've been doing this 40 years, and it's frustrating to have to keep fighting discrimination."
jason milligan, who is white, said he was fired from turner in august after he refused to sign a false affidavit that claimed one of the employees who had complained about the company was stealing at work.
"not all the employees there were bad," said milligan, a 37-year-old father of three. he said that since he was fired, he has had to take a job out of state to support his family.
"as a company, they need to stop living in the 1950s," he said. "these people all have families, and it doesn't matter what color they are.
"enough is enough," he said.
there are several pictures of disturbing racial epitets on the blog piece.
mad about republican "patriots"
beck to where he once belonged
based on the nielsen numbers, here's a look at beck's average daily rating over the last month.
you'll note that aside from a temporary spike that came on march 22, the monday after the historic health care vote, glenn beck has spent the last four weeks with between 2.5 million and 2.0 million viewers, which represents a downward trend. (you'll also note a low of 1.76 million viewers on march 31, but beck was off on vacation that night.)
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
skippy's wednesday nite music club
i remember crying for weeks after hearing of john lennon's assasination.
john winston ono lennon, mbe
9 october 1940 – 8 december 1980
i've pulled a texas textbooker
quote of the day
“people want a congressman who stands up and speaks out,” grayson said. “people have come to think that a democratic congressman with guts is a mythological creature, like a unicorn.”
there’s little doubt, obviously, that grayson’s appeal partly turns on the fact that he does rattle off outrageous quotes regularly and is almost a political performance artist. but to ascribe his appeal to this alone — or to cast him as an extreme left wing version of bachmann — is to miss the point.
rather, his appeal to dem base voters resides in the fact that he’s not afraid of gop attacks, that he doesn’t let republicans own the debate, that he makes his case as aggressively as he can and hopes for the best — in short, that he fights. perriello is cut from this mold, too: even though he represents a “marginal” district, he has argued widely and aggressively in favor of the health law, rather than shrink from an argument over his vote, even if it risks ending his career.
rank and file dems across the country have grown so fed up with watching their leadership cower in the face of gop attacks that they reward this kind of feistiness when they see it — and even regard him as their representative, grayson says.
“people around the country say, `i regard you as my congressman because you’re telling the truth,” he says. “you’re saying what i’m thinking.”
while you're helping out all those other people, help them out down in mexicali, too, would you? if you'd like to help out, go through border angels. and thank you. anything you can spare would help.
racist pervert gubernatorial candidate now making up stories about bomb threats
okay, so first, what is it with republicans and bestiality (ewwwwww)? rick "bottle baby" santorum's obsession with man on dog sex and neal "hee haw" horsley's admitted love affair with a mule show that the recent revelations about gop parties at lesbian-bondage strip clubs are the more vanilla of their personal pecadillos (and no, "pecadillo" does not refer to sexual contact between a republican pecker and an armadillo, though i wouldn't be surprised if that hasn't taken place).
second, is there any such thing as a "black militant" group anymore? does the republican calendar still show the year as 1968?
finally, have the police at least checked the phone call and figured out where and when it was placed? unlike in 1968, phones now have caller id and all kinds of record-keeping technology. what's the dope on this dopey, hard to believe claim?
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
skippy's tuesday nite music club
we'll start off the week with one of my all time favorites....
stevie ray vaughan
october 3, 1954 – august 27, 1990
who are you musically missing?
congrats mark fiore
one of our favorite "cartoonists" for winning a pulitzer!
mark fiore, whose animated political cartoons appear on sfgate.com, the web site of the chronicle, won the pulitzer prize for editorial cartooning monday. it is the first time since the category of editorial cartooning was created in 1922 that the pulitzer has gone to an artist whose work does not appear in print. the pulitzer jury said fiore's "biting wit, extensive research and ability to distill complex issues set a high standard for an emerging form of commentary" - online video cartooning. - sfgate
Monday, April 12, 2010
skippy's monday nite music club
hope my choices didn't suck... :-)
duran duran - "girls on film"
my scotus picks
although i know my future husband, keith olbermann, might not like it, i think that jonathan turley would be a good scotus pick. (as a member of the supremes, i don't think that dreamy keith would be able to interview mr. turley.)
another choice of mine is a man that i have on my future husband list, the honorable senator from rhodes island, sheldon whitehouse. i think that the rethugs in the senate might be a little hesitant about pulling their cr** on him....you know that senatorial "decorum"....
my third choice is one that i think would really send the rethuglicans' heads to 'splode....former ny governor (and the one that wall street loves to hate), eliot spitzer! ha! can you just hear the "ka-boom....splats" now?
church fights sex abuse law change
remember, the church is there for you and your children...especially for your children.
dow tops 11,000...wall street journal says nothing about obama policies
it is more than a year after that article was published and the dow, which stood at 6763 on march 3, 2009, passed 11,000 today.
where's the wall street journal online article saying how obama's economic policies had saved the economy and caused the dow to jump by 63% in just thirteen and a half months?
yeah, that's what I thought.
mad about inflammatory fleming
Sunday, April 11, 2010
skippy's sunday nite music club
george michael (the wham glam boy) - "careless whisper"
matt taibbi rocks...again...and again....
....but then you come to this last line of his, in which he claims that “for the first time in history, rich people work longer hours than middle class or poor people,” and you find yourself almost speechless.
i would give just about anything to sit david brooks down in front of some single mother somewhere who’s pulling two shitty minimum-wage jobs just to be able to afford a pair of $19 mossimo sneakers at target for her kid, and have him tell her, with a straight face, that her main problem is that she doesn’t work as hard as jamie dimon.
only a person who has never actually held a real job could say something like this. there is, of course, a huge difference between working 80 hours a week in a profession that you love and which promises you vast financial rewards, and working 80 hours a week digging ditches for a septic-tank company, or listening to impatient assholes scream at you at some airport ticket counter all day long, or even teaching disinterested, uncontrollable kids in some crappy school district with metal detectors on every door.- matt taibbi
i "heart" alan grayson
rep. alan grayson (d-fl) paid a visit to an audience that wouldn't be a natural venue for a fiery liberal such as himself: a meeting of the local orange county republican executive committee.(h/t to mememememe at the great orange one)
grayson told the orlando sentinel that he was attending a local home-owners association meeting in the same restaurant, and then went over to the republicans to express his displeasure about a flier promoting a recent infiltration by republicans of a local pro-obama group.
"that's political dirty tricks," grayson said. "i went over to find out what their side of the story was, and whether they approved of that." - talking points memo.
environmental news story sunday
but, as a. siegel points out over at the great orange one, there are some important things missing from his piece.
this truly excellent piece, however, has several serious weaknesses. there is, of course, the base problem that the 'costs' of climate change are -- even in his work -- seriously underestimated. but, krugman is an economist building on the work of other economists. In that community, he is not on the optimistic side in terms of climate change's impacts even if he is likely too optimistic against what the real impacts will be.
more importantly, the nobel-prize winning krugman fails to call out the economic community and economic analysis for incredibly stove-piped analysis of climate change issues and the potential positive value of climate change mitigation.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
skippy's saturday nite music club
the spice girls (yes...the spice girls) "never give up on the good times"
(i dare you to sit still during this....)
quote of the day
the modern republican has no actual understanding of policy, no desire to understand policy and, indeed, believes that attempting to understand policy is proof of treason to the sacred principles of clown nihilism.
they are no longer serious people with serious opinions that deserve to be taken seriously. the fact that they are no longer serious people is a grave threat to the republic. and yet, our imbecilic msm persists in treating them like they’re still the party of eisenhower and howard baker. they don’t even percieve the problem. for people like stephenopolis or tapper, it’s because they’ve never known anything but the clown nihilists and they assume thus was it was and always will be. it’s less forgivable from the surviving old hands, people like cokie roberts or sam donaldson who should recall days when there were still republicans who believed government should govern and the point of dispute between the parties was merely “how much” rather than “whether.” for them, i think, the problem is the old one of the frog in the pot whose temperature is brought to a boil so slowly, they don’t ever see the need to jump out of the pot.
this american life and pro-publica
read the story here.
in late 2005, the booming u.s. housing market seemed to be slowing. the federal reserve had begun raising interest rates. subprime mortgage company shares were falling. investors began to balk at buying complex mortgage securities. the housing bubble, which had propelled a historic growth in home prices, seemed poised to deflate. and if it had, the great financial crisis of 2008, which produced the great recession of 2008-09, might have come sooner and been less severe. at just that moment, a few savvy financial engineers at a suburban chicago hedge fund 
helped revive the wall street money machine, spawning billions of dollars of securities ultimately backed by home mortgages. - pro publica
listen to it here. (available in full form sunday)
a hedge fund named magnetar comes up with an elaborate plan to make money. it sponsors the creation of complicated and ultimately toxic financial securities... while at the same time betting against the very securities it helped create. planet money's alex blumberg teams up with two investigative reporters from propublica, jake bernstein and jesse eisinger, to tell the story. jake and jesse pored through thousands of pages of documents and interviewed dozens of wall street insiders. we bring you the result: a tale of intrigue and questionable behavior, which parallels quite closely the plot of a mel brooks musical. (40 minutes) - this american life
those so-called fiscally conservative rethugs
she was a 25-year-old junior staffer when the florida republican party gave her an american express card.$1.3 mil. that's quite a price, phister. what a drip.
over the next 2½ years, nearly $1.3 million in charges wound up on melanie phister's amex — $40,000 at a london hotel, and nearly $20,000 in plane tickets for indicted former house speaker ray sansom, his wife and kids, for starters. statements show thousands spent on jewelry, sporting goods and in one case $15,000 for what's listed as a month-long stay at a posh miami beach hotel, but which the party says was a forfeited deposit. - st pete's times
Friday, April 09, 2010
skippy's friday nite music club
dido - "here with me" (this version performed live)
the baggers shall inherit the wind
tweet of the day
gossip pack: tiger woods stroking away at couples at the masters http://is.gd/blEsv
the racist and the torture lover
the david horowitz "freedom" center cordially invites you to attendwhy do these hate mongerers continue to use the word "freedom" in all their promotional cr** when that's the first thing they want to take away from americans?
the santa barbara retreat will be held april 23 – april 25, 2010, at the beautiful bacara resort in santa barbara, california. the david horowitz freedom center extends an invitation for you to participate in this important west coast gathering of prominent authorities on topics ranging from the 2010 elections, the economy, the middle east, homeland security and the jihad and more. thus far we have confirmed as speakers, victor davis hanson, allen west, andrew mccarthy, john yoo, john eastman, congressman ed royce, andrew klavan, ralph peters, robert spencer, michael reagan, pat caddell, frank gaffney and senator jim (we will break him) demint.
the area will have to be scrubbed down after they leave from all the filth they always leave behind.
mad about unreal american stories
Thursday, April 08, 2010
skippy's thursday nite music club
tonight....billie myers "tell me"
so....tell me what are pop songs that are sticking in your mind?
if by "grassroots" you mean corporate network sponsorship, then, yes
i wax fucking nostalgic.
back in ought-two & ought-three, i went to antiwar protests in nyc and dc. and there were lots of people there -- six times as many as ever bothered with any fucking tea party bullshit. these protests were sponsored by answer, a group i still know nothing and give less of a shit about, as did/do 99% of the people who showed up at that shit.
at the risk of generalizing, and fuck you for giving me shit about generalizing, the 99% of us who went to those antiwar protests knew two things, namely, (1) the iraq war was a fucking stupid idea, and (2) protesting it by marching wouldn't fucking stop it or even fucking slow it down.
but what the hell else was there to do? or, to be more precise, where the hell else was there the public space to say that the war was fucked? …
and that's what kills me about the tea baggers. they have a major news network behind them. they drive the agenda of one of the major american political parties. they have the infrastructure of, well, this sort of shit:
specifically in washington, freedomworks.org, the group founded by former house speaker dick armey (r-texas), is holding a 9 a.m. “liberty summit” at the ronald reagan building ampitheatre and a 6 p.m. rally at the washington monument. in between, the group plans to lobby members of congress. a promotional bus tour called the tea party express also plans an event on boston on april 14 — featuring former alaska gov. sarah palin (r) — and is scheduled to be in washington the next day.
grass-roots my taut n' perky ass. say what you want about answer, and again, who the fuck are they, come on, there is balance here?
and even with all that pr, all that fox news flogging, all those wingnut celebrity endorsements, they still can't draw more than a sixth of what we got, ordinary americans who were fed up, only in regards to a pointless and bloody war, and were, you know, proved fucking right.
matt taibbi is gonzo-riffic
....birmingham became the poster child for a new kind of giant-scale financial fraud, one that would threaten the financial stability not only of cities and counties all across america, but even those of entire countries like greece. while for many americans the financial crisis remains an abstraction, a confusing mess of complex transactions that took place on a cloud high above manhattan sometime in the mid-2000s, in jefferson county you can actually see the rank criminality of the crisis economy with your own eyes; the monster sticks his head all the way out of the water. here you can see a trail that leads directly from a billion-dollar predatory swap deal cooked up at the highest levels of america's biggest banks, across a vast fruited plain of bribes and felonies — "the price of doing business," as one jp morgan banker says on tape — all the way down to lisa pack's sewer bill and the mass layoffs in birmingham.isnt' this story more important to our country's survival than the tiger woods' sexscapades? where is the rest of the "media?" why aren't these banksters in jail?
once you follow that trail and understand what took place in jefferson county, there's really no room left for illusions. we live in a gangster state, and our days of laughing at other countries are over. it's our turn to get laughed at. in birmingham, lots of people have gone to jail for the crime: more than 20 local officials and businessmen have been convicted of corruption in federal court. last october, right around the time that lisa pack went back to work at reduced hours, birmingham's mayor was convicted of fraud and money-laundering for taking bribes funneled to him by wall wtreet bankers — everything from rolex watches to ferragamo suits to cash. but those who greenlighted the bribes and profited most from the scam remain largely
untouched. "it never gets back to jp morgan," says pack. - rolling stone
palin brings the stupid to minnesota
"what do you say, minnesota? will you do the rest of the nation a favor and re-elect michele bachmann? we have so much work to do to get our country back on track."
um, sarah? "minnesota" doesn't vote for representatives. representatives are elected by individual districts. one district elected bachmann to congress and another minnesota district elected keith ellison. minnesota has eight representatives in the house and five of them are from the democratic farm labor party and three are republicans. in statewide elections, a majority of minnesotans voted for john kerry in 2004, barack obama in 2008, democratic senator amy klobuchar in 2006 and democrat al franken in 2008 (yeah, it was very close, but the recount came in for al). i wouldn't count on minnesota to give the party of no a big push in 2010.
sarah? call me if you need further clarification. i'm here to help.