Tuesday, August 31, 2010
a heartbreaking true story
today, a personal story of a national tragedy. five years ago, hurricane katrina struck new orleans. abdulrahman zeitoun, a syrian-born new orleans building contractor, stayed in the city while his wife and children left to baton rouge. he paddled the flooded streets in his canoe and helped rescue many of his stranded neighbors. days later, armed police and national guardsmen arrested him and accused him of being a terrorist. he was held for nearly a month, most of which he was not allowed to call his wife, kathy. today, in a rare broadcast interview, abdulrahman and kathy zeitoun join us to tell their story, along with the man who chronicles it in the book zeitoun, dave eggers. - democracy now via countercurrents
finally, they write a bit where we don't have to choose 'die'
Paypal Caused Sarah Palin to Lose the 2008 Presidential Election
or, if you prefer (or are Rich Lowry):
Monday, August 30, 2010
skippy's monday nite music club
happy birthday, molly...wherever you are
on the subject of pat buchanan's famously combative "culture war speech" at the 1992 republican convention, which attracted controversy over buchanan's aggressive rhetoric against bill clinton, liberals, supporters of reproductive and gay rights, and for his comparison of american politics to religious warfare, ivins famously quipped that the speech had "probably sounded better in the original german." - wiki
taxpayers are stimulating bp
**which has been banned by norway for environmental concerns.
the federal government is giving a joint venture involving oil giant bp millions of dollars in stimulus money to build a power plant on farmland near the tiny kern county town of tupman, even as the company faces heavy government pressure and a criminal probe into the gulf of mexico oil spill.
bp is benefiting from a $308 million federal grant over several years for the cutting-edge power plant on cotton and alfalfa fields seven miles from the western edge of bakersfield. more than half of the money, $175 million, is coming from stimulus funds. the rest is coming from another federal program.
the stimulus portion alone ranks as the second biggest award in california to a corporation and among the largest in the country benefiting private interests, according to data reported to the government by stimulus recipients.
the u.s. department of energy announced the grant last year to hydrogen energy california, a joint partnership of bp and the multinational mining firm rio tinto**, and has paid out $13.6 million so far. the money continues to flow even as the obama administration bills bp for the massive costs of the oil spill. - california watch
quote of the day
Sunday, August 29, 2010
the "dancing with the stars" results show is not...the event
consider this an open thread: who's going to win? who should win? what upcoming shows look interesting, and which ones look like a total waste of time?
a russian oligarch parked his yacht
get a first hand look at 38 year old russian billionaire andrey melnichencko’s $300 million, 394-foot yacht which pulled up to the santa barbara this morning. the phillipe starck designed ship named simply “a” is loaded with luxuries. watch the video to learn more!
the yacht dwarfed all other boats and had to be anchored off shore. too large for sb’s harbor. the yacht dropped anchor and then a large side door opened. a smaller boat exited and sat waiting to bring people to the harbor. - santa barbarians
environmental news story sunday
9/11's forgotten victims: 'we're living in a toxic time bomb.' - far more people are likely to die from the effects of 9/11's toxic dust cloud than were killed in the attack itself. the victims include office workers, shopkeepers, local residents... but the worst-affected are the 'responders.' - london daily mail
slowly, green chemistry is transforming how we make stuff. - green chemistry is a new trend moving through industry. it is the process of changing how we make stuff by using ingredients that are sustainably made, processes that generate the smallest amount of waste and packaging that requires the least amount of material - racine journal times
klamath basin's water worries extend to wells. - since 2001, the government has paid some basin farmers to irrigate with well water when the weather turns dry. but this year's pumping, roughly double previous highs, shows the limits of that strategy for resolving oregon's most politically fraught water war. - portland oregonian
decoster took control of egg operation after state ban. - state regulators in 2001 reluctantly issued a permit for a wright county chicken operation now linked to a nationwide salmonella scare and egg recall because they could not prove that troubled livestock businessman austin "jack" decoster was behind the project. but he was. - des moines register
copper in brake pads out to protect water, fish. - a ground-breaking compromise to greatly reduce the amount of copper used in vehicle brake pads has been reached — a welcome relief to san diego regional water-quality officials staring at the threat of heavy fines for having elevated levels of the toxic material washing into watersheds and bays. - san diego tribune
are cash register receipts poisoning you? - the next plastic water bottle you buy won’t have bpa in it, but the receipt might. a series of recent studies has found high levels of the toxin in an unlikely but ubiquitous place: cash register receipts. one study found that touching a receipt for five seconds wiped off up to 23 micrograms of bpa. - ottawa citizen
tasmania's climate change hit list. - a new report shows alpine regions and coastal areas will be tasmania's first casualties of climate change. - sydney abc news
wyoming congressmen 'floating in oil'. - oil change international has launched a website that claims oil industry contributions may influence the voting record of wyoming's u.s. senators - cheyenne tribune eagle
sir bill gammell is leading an oil rush into one of the world's most pristine environments and greenpeace is determined to stop him. - where oil companies see a rich new seam of profit and energy, environmentalists look at the spectacularly inhospitable conditions in "iceberg alley" and see an accident waiting to happen. - edinburgh scotsman
and then...there's katrina.
five ways new orleans is still struggling after katrina, - newly elected new orleans mayor mitch landrieu recently marked his first one hundred days in office by announcing one hundred katrina recovery projects. here are five critical areas of public policy which may determine whether new orleans has a successful recovery by 2015 - christian science monitor
after katrina, new orleans housing goes green. - conservation was never a top priority in new orleans, but katrina changed that. the city is now an incubator for new home building featuring natural resources and sustainable architecture - christian science monitor
five years after katrina, new orleans still caught between storms. - rebuilding efforts have turned new orleans into a hopeful start-up city, but troubling new - and old - problems abound. as one activist put it, new orleans is always going to be between storms. - latte times
katrina still hurts. - the $143 billion federal recovery effort for the new orleans region, wrecked by hurricane katrina five years ago, has produced spotty successes and lingering failures. help still hasn't reached enough of the victims. obama promised to do better; people are waiting. - philadelphia inquirer
rebuilding a community hit with disaster. - i'm overwhelmed with emotion when i see the conditions in new orleans five years later. there is no reason that such a richly cultured city in one of the world's wealthiest nations should still be in such disrepair. we must unite and put pressure on the powers that be to rebuild and put people back to work. - chicago tribune
bye-bye bayou. - katrina took their homes. bp’s spill took their jobs. and coastal erosion is taking the very land their ancestors called home for centuries. but the tiny, native american community of grand bayou village is determined to hang on. - living on earth
the legacy of katrina’s kids. - children who survived the storm are at increased risk to suffer mental-health issues today. how their plight is reshaping disaster planning. - newsweek
long term gulf restoration. - the gulf region faces a laundry list of environmental problems, from coastal erosion to oil cleanup. president obama recently selected the secretary of the navy, ray mabus, to come up with a long-term gulf restoration plan. mabus says this administration's commitment to the gulf will be judged by results. - living on earth
green living in new orleans. - the lower ninth ward of new orleans was destroyed during hurricane katrina. now, with the help of the brad pitt-backed organization make it right, some residents are trickling back into their old neighborhoods to live in newly built houses - living on earth
with liberty and justice for some
well, i'm certainly pro-freedom, and as far as i can tell, the anti-freedom crowd struggles to win votes on election day. but can they be a little more specific? how about the freedom for same-sex couples to get married? no, we're told, not that kind of freedom.
this is about a fight for american "liberties."
that sounds great, too. who's against american "liberties"? but i'm still looking for some details. might this include law-abiding american muslims exercising their liberties and converting a closed-down clothing store into a community center? no, we're told, not those kinds of liberties.
this is about giving americans who work hard and play by the rules more opportunities.
i'm all for that, too. but would these opportunities include the chance for hard-working americans to bring their kids to the doctor if they get sick, even if the family can't afford insurance? no, we're told, not those kinds of opportunities.
this is about the values of the founding fathers.
i'm a big fan of the framers' generation, who created an extraordinary nation. but if we're honoring their values, would this include their steadfast commitment to the separation of church and state? no, we're told, not those values.
mad about glenn beck...and america
august 29, 2005
Saturday, August 28, 2010
lonesome rhodes beck
he should rename his 9/12 project to the "5150's"
[editor's addendum: try glenn beck university! the best education $9.95 can buy!]
the best education $9.95 can buy!
remember, research is for sissies!
credit where credit is due, even if it's a debit from the original estimate
the company airphotoslive.com based the attendance on aerial pictures it took over the rally, which stretched from in front of the lincoln memorial along the reflecting pool to the washington monument. beck and former alaska gov. sarah palin spoke at the rally.
beck, who predicted that at least 100,000 people would show up, opened his comments with a joke: "i have just gotten word from the media that there is over 1,000 people here today."
"i...have a meme"
"for too long, this country has wandered in darkness, and we have wandered in darkness in periods from the beginning," beck said, at times pacing at the memorial. "we have had moments of brilliance and moments of darkness. but this country has spent far too long worried about scars and thinking about the scars and concentrating on the scars.
"today," he continued, "we are going to concentrate on the good things in america, the things that we have accomplished - and the things that we can do tomorrow. the story of america is the story of humankind."
but beck's attempt to appropriate the legacy of king, who delivered his famous "i have a dream" speech from the same marbled steps 47 years ago to the day, drew a counter protest from the rev. al sharpton and other civil rights leaders. they rallied outside dunbar high school in northwest washington and planned to march to the mall, to the site where a memorial to king is being built.
"the 'march on washington' changed america," del. eleanor holmes norton (d-d.c.) said at the sharpton rally, referencing king's 1963 speech. "our country reached to overcome the low points of our racial history. glenn beck's march will change nothing. but you can't blame glenn beck for his 'march on washington' envy. too bad he doesn't have a message worthy of the place."
avis jones deweaver, executive director of the national council of negro women also spoke to the crowd at dunbar high school: "don't let anyone tell you that they have the right to take their country back. it's our country, too. we will reclaim the dream. it was ours from the beginning."
beck's rally has been billed as a peaceful and non-political "re-dedication" of the traditional honor and values of the nation. beck, a fox news host, has developed a national following by assailing president obama and democrats, and he warned saturday that "our children could be slaves to debt." but he insisted that the rally "has nothing to do with politics. it has everything to do with god, turning our faith back to the values and principles that made us great."
addendum: cbs puts the numbers of attendees @ 87,000, and amy hawks glenn beck university!
Friday, August 27, 2010
skippy's friday nite music club
one of the blogs that i frequented to get a local's eyeview of the disaster called katrina...and fema...was gulfsails. some of troy's early days missives...
wednesday, august 31, 2005another blog from nola that i turned to for a very different perspective was the new orleans survival blog.
try to understand, we have lost everything. community. lives. history. family. everything.
tuesday, august 20, 2005
worked on rebuilding the new orleans economy today. traded labor and chainsaw for gasoline.
plaquemines parish reclaimed by river. little woods in east no longer exists.breach in 17th st canal continues. water continues to rise.
i guess what i'm saying is there's no need to focus on us here, because we're gonna make do. we need to worry about preventing the city from consuming itself, because the looting is getting nuts, the waters are rising in many heretofor unflooded sections, and there's no timeline available for power, food, water, medicine and the like for the masses.yes. the anger is rising just like the water did in nola 5 years ago.
if you have any survival tips, feel free to toss in your input. i've got a lot of survival training, but we've never trained for the total collapse of civilization (or i should say, my only training in that regard was from a military perspective).
...if you're on the cam, you've got a special treat: you're watching the flood progress (hasn't moved in 24 hours) and the looting of a hotel.
we like what you've done with the place
tweet of the day
Thursday, August 26, 2010
rip george david weiss
“can’t help falling in love,” introduced in presley’s 1961 film “blue hawaii,” was a million-seller. it has words and music by mr. weiss, hugo peretti and luigi creatore.
“the lion sleeps tonight” (1961), based on a south african zulu song first recorded in the 1930s, was given a reworked melody and new lyrics (“in the jungle, the mighty jungle/the lion sleeps tonight”) by mr. weiss, mr. peretti and mr. creatore.
their adaptation, which kept the refrain — “wimoweh, wimoweh” — popularized in a 1950s version by the weavers, became a million-selling hit for the tokens. widely recorded since, the song has been used in many motion pictures, including “the lion king” (1994).
ew.com tells us how weiss re-worked what was then a standard:
the nytimes goes on to tell us the depth of mr. weiss's talents:
he collaborated on several broadway musicals, the best known of which is “mr. wonderful” (1956), starring sammy davis jr., for which mr. weiss contributed original music and lyrics with jerry bock and larry holofcener.
his other broadway credits include “first impressions” (1959), an adaptation of jane austen’s “pride and prejudice” starring polly bergen, hermione gingold and farley granger, for which mr. weiss wrote music and lyrics with robert goldman and glenn paxton; and “maggie flynn” (1968), starring shirley jones and jack cassidy, with book, music and lyrics by mr. weiss, mr. peretti and mr. creatore.
rest in peace, george david weiss.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
skippy's wednesday nite music club
i agree with paul krugman
i'm shocked...shocked to hear that a former gop chair
ken mehlman, president bush's campaign manager in 2004 and a former chairman of the republican national committee, has told family and associates that he is gay. - the atlantic
where are there any returns at all? treasuries. in other words, investing in the united states government. the barclays 7-10-year treasury bond fund has produced a 7.14% annualized return over ten years. so let's rush into bonds, right? wrong. paul price explains why.
how about tangible assets, then? there's always real estate, right? buy a house so you have something that can appreciate over the long term, right?
hate volatility? don't want to risk principal in markets that are going nowhere? how about just putting your money in a nice, safe bank cd? the highest 5-year cd rate right now is 2.96%. hey, at least it's something. but what about inflation? don't investment companies usually say to take into account 3-4% inflation every year? isn't that the whole rationale behind investing in the stock market? even the above link to axa equitable puts out the conventional wisdom of the stock market outperforming inflation...except now they have to go back to 1926 to get there!
so send a link to this post to all your friends, especially the younger ones, who think that turning social security into a stock market fund is a swell idea; that they'll be more guaranteed their payouts when the time comes. because the only purpose of putting social security into the stock market is to generate revenue for investment bankers. and given the market's performance over the last decade, unless you're lucky enough to have a 401(k) with an employer match, and you've put it into some fixed vehicle paying 3% a year, you've been losing money.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
skippy's tuesday nite music club
tweet of the day
sethmacfarlane i support the right of the jedi to build a temple, but does it have to be two blocks from the ruins of the death star?
august 24, 1922
“if those in charge of our society - politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television - can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. they will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. we will control ourselves.he said he wanted to be known as "somebody who gave people a feeling of hope and power that they didn't have before...."
professor zinn...you did....and you still do.
Monday, August 23, 2010
one scary story
one of the fastest-growing online businesses is the business of spying on internet users by using sophisticated software to track movements through the web, so that the information can be sold to advertisers.
julia angwin recently led a team of reporters from the wall street journal in analyzing the tracking software. they discovered that nearly all of the most commonly visited websites gather information in real time about the behavior of online users. the journal series identified more than 100 tracking companies, data brokers and advertising networks collecting data — which are then sold on a stock market-like exchange to online advertisers.
in a recent conversation with fresh air contributor dave davies, angwin explains how consumer surveillance works, how users can disable the tracking software — and how advertisers are continually evolving to keep up with the data they receive. she notes that many internet users are unaware that their information is being tracked and then traded. - npr fresh aire
Sunday, August 22, 2010
another reason why unlimited corporate money
owners of the iowa egg production company that has voluntarily recalled millions of eggs linked to salmonella outbreaks were significant donors in opposition to a 2008 california ballot measure that restricted cage confinement of poultry.
california’s proposition 2, which was overwhelmingly passed by that states voters but doesn’t go fully into effect until 2015, required that “calves raised for veal, egg-laying hens and pregnant sows be confined only in ways that allow the animals to lie down, stand up, fully extend their limbs and turn around freely.” advocates of the measure took special exception to treatment of hens, which they described as being “crowded into small wire cages” that were “stacked to the ceiling in the name of efficiency and profits.” the egg industry countered that the cages protect hens from disease and from their tendency for flight.
each side spent millions to sway california voters, and at least 13 iowa companies with ties to the egg industry donated in an effort to defeat the new confinement regulations. the largest donation from iowa — $100,000 in september 2008 — came from a tiny real estate company called galt real estate. according to filings with the iowa secretary of state’s office, the company maintains a business address in galt that is also home to at least 15 additional businesses, some active and others inactive, but all with ties to the decoster family. - iowa independent
skippy's late nite music club
tweet of the day
if just *one* more member of the media asks to see my birth sithficate, i swear i'm going all alderaan on their ass.
environmental news stories sunday
wildfire smoke forces hospitals, merchants to lock doors. - smoke from wildfires wreaked havoc across british columbia on thursday, forcing hospitals to lock their doors and merchants to shutter their shops. - toronto globe and mail
smoke from b.c. choking eastern provinces, damaging air quality. - clouds of stinking smoke from b.c. forest fires covered much of western canada on friday, reducing visibility and sparking air-quality advisories - vancouver sun
scientists simulate terror attack on us subway. - scientists released nontoxic gases and fluorescent particles into boston's subway tunnels on friday to study how toxic chemicals and lethal biological agents could spread through the nation's oldest subway system in a terrorist attack - ap
kremlin official warns on russian water purity. - russia's lax water purity standards and wasteful use of water pose a threat to national security, the head of president dmitry medvedev's security council said in remarks published on thursday - reuters
on the frontline of climate change. - irrigated by one of the world's mightiest river systems, the murray-darling basin yields nearly half of australia's fresh produce. but the basin is ailing, and scientists fear that as climate change grips the driest inhabited continent, its main foodbowl could become a global warming ground zero - london independent
shell, basf to appeal ruling on pollution in brazil. - royal dutch shell and german chemicals maker basf plan to appeal a first instance brazilian court ruling on health injuries related to soil and ground water pollution at a former pesticide plant in paulinia - reuters
"snot otter" sperm to save giant salamander? - it may be a shot in the dark, but freezing sperm is one of the last chances to save the hellbender, north america's biggest salamander, conservationists say. the reasons for their decline is unknown, but contaminants such as pesticides are likely harming the creatures via their highly permeable skin, experts say - national geographic news
state, feds moving to require cleanup of chicago river for recreation. - in virtually every other city in the nation, it would be illegal to pump out partially treated sewage teeming with the amount of disease-causing bacteria that churns endlessly into the chicago river - chicago tribune
now atlantic is found to have huge 'garbage patch.' - a huge expanse of floating plastic debris has been documented for the first time in the north atlantic ocean. the size of the affected area rivals the "great pacific garbage patch" in the world's other great ocean basin - london independent
backward christian soldiers
on may 13, 2010, about eighty soldiers, stationed at fort eustis while attending a training course, were punished for opting out of attending one of these christian concerts. the headliner at this concert was a christian rock band called barlowgirl, a band that describes itself as taking "an aggressive, almost warrior-like stance when it comes to spreading the gospel and serving god."
any doubt that this was an evangelical christian event was cleared up by the army post's newspaper, the fort eustis wheel, which ran an article after the concert that began:
"at that evening, nine of us chose to pursue an eo complaint. i was surprised to find out that a couple of the most offended soldiers were actually christian themselves (catholic). one of them was grown as a child in cuba and this incident enraged him particularly as it brought memories of oppression."
addendum: the army says it will investigate:
fort eustis spokesman rick haverinen told the associated press he couldn't comment on the specifics of the investigation. at the pentagon, army spokesman col. thomas collins said the military shouldn't impose religious views on soldiers.
"if something like that were to have happened, it would be contrary to army policy," collins said.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
mad about newt trying to neutralize sarah palin
Friday, August 20, 2010
skippy's friday nite music club
sharron angle...just like washington and jefferson and franklin, except she isn't
and truly, when you look at the constitution and our founding fathers and their writings, the things that made this country great, you might draw those conclusions: that they were conservative. they were fiscally conservative and socially conservative.
that sharron angle is some scholar, isn't she? she seems to be completely unaware that the founding fathers fought a revolution, the very definition of "not conservative", or that the government they formed was a radical departure from the governments with which they were familiar, the very definition of "not conservative".
do we always have to have complete idiots on the republican ticket? don't smart people ever run as republicans?
Thursday, August 19, 2010
skippy's thursday nite music club
when republicans urge "2nd amendment solutions"
minneapolis and capitol hill police are investigating a shot that was fired at the condo of sen. al franken (d-minn.).
nobody was home at the time of the incident, which was not reported until after the senator and his wife returned home to minneapolis after a two-day trip out of town on tuesday and discovered the damage to their window facing the street. - politico
well...it's official...many americans
bad news for the dems come november
initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 12,000 to a seasonally adjusted 500,000 in the week ended august 14, the highest since mid-november, the labor department said on thursday.
analysts polled by reuters had forecast claims slipping to 476,000 from the previously reported 484,000 the prior week, which was revised up to 488,000 in thursday's report.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
skippy's wednesday nite music club
bad day for hate speech
dr. schlessinger made the announcement on tuesday night on “larry king live,” saying she made a decision not to renew her contract when it expires at the end of the year and suggesting that she did not want her opinions and language, however provocative, to be muzzled.
“i want to regain my first amendment rights,” she said. “i want to be able to say what’s on my mind and in my heart and what i think is helpful and useful without somebody getting angry, some special interest group deciding this is the time to silence a voice of dissent and attack affiliates, attack sponsors. i’m sort of done with that.”
but she stressed that she was not retiring, only ending her show, and would continue to write books and appear at speaking engagements.
mad about mosque mockery
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
skippy's tuesday nite music club
the trouble with harry
what we can't understand is why somebody in a position of authority, perhaps the president, since the senate majority leader won't do it, doesn't come out and say:
listen, you yahoos. the muslims that want to open the cordoba community center are not only not the same guys that smashed into the world trade center, they hate those guys as much as we do! it's a completely different set of people!
and before you get all self-righteous and cry that it "isn't bigotry," just because you oppose a "mosque" (which it isn't) being "built on ground zero" (which it won't be) because that's "hallowed ground" (which happens to have 5 strip clubs and numerous liquor stores in a three block radius thereof...how frakkin' hallowed is that?), let me remind you of this:
you are bascially ascribing responsibility for an terrible event to a separate group of people who simply share characteristics with the actual culprits of said event. that is the textbook definition of bigotry!
Monday, August 16, 2010
august 16, 1977
ground zero sum game
michael gerson, bush's former chief speechwriter, added today, "those who want a president to assert that any mosque would defile the neighborhood near ground zero are asking him to undermine the war on terrorism."
william saletan noted the ways in which leading republicans have become allies of osama bin laden's propaganda campaign. jeffrey goldberg also explained two weeks ago: "i know feisal abdul rauf; i've spoken with him at a public discussion at the 96th street mosque in new york about interfaith cooperation. he represents what bin laden fears most: a muslim who believes that it is possible to remain true to the values of islam and, at the same time, to be a loyal citizen of a western, non-muslim country."
clearly, the vast majority of the gop, and most of the american public, doesn't want to hear this. it's easier to believe that muslim americans are all dangerous (they're not) and now they're trying to build a mosque at ground zero (which isn't true, either).
but if critics would just pause to catch their breath and consider reason, they'd see there's no value in helping bin laden's dangerous scheme.
Sunday, August 15, 2010
skippy's sunday nite music club
tweet of the day
environmental news stories sunday
railroads' guarded secret: not even hazmat teams are told what's on train. - trains carrying deadly chemicals rumble through our backyards every day, but railroad companies hauling them refuse to publicly disclose exactly what those substances are, or how often they travel through the area. ...local emergency workers, who would respond to a leak, spill or fire, have no knowledge of what's being transported on those cars until an accident happens.- elmira star gazette
states struggle to curb pollution by cruise ships. - in a single day, the epa estimates, passengers aboard a typical cruise ship will generate 21,000 gallons of sewage, one ton of garbage, 170,000 gallons of wastewater, and more than 25 pounds of batteries, fluorescent lights, medical wastes and expired chemicals - investigate west
doubts raised about future of gas drilling in many pa parks. - the breathtaking drop from the heights above loyalsock creek that gave worlds end state park its name might also be one of the few things that can save the popular camping, hiking and fishing destination in sullivan county from being the site of marcellus shale natural gas wells - scranton times tribune
decades-old jet fuel spill sparks water contamination fears in south bibb county. - a soil and groundwater cleanup at the site of a 30-year-old jet fuel spill in south bibb county has alerted neighbors for the first time to the water contamination in their community - macon telegraph
in the dark about white-nose syndrome. - all six of vermont’s cave-dwelling bat species have been attacked by white-nose syndrome. if the spread of white-nose continues, the u.s. geological survey projects that 25 species of hibernating bats in the united states could be in deep trouble, with several headed for extinction - barre montpelier times argus
heat records broken in 17 countries so far this year. - this year is a little more than half over, and already it is one for the climate record books. the number of countries that have set new national records for the warmest temperature recorded — 17 — would beat the old record of 14, provided that all of the new records are verified. - climate central
short circuit looms in minnesota's promising wind energy industry. - dan juhl, founder of juhl wind and a pioneer in minnesota's wind industry, needed to vent. his industry, which enjoyed record growth last year, is in danger of becoming becalmed due to congressional inaction. - st. paul pioneer express
dalai lama sounds alarm over global warming amid floods. - the dalai lama said global warming could be to blame for devastating flooding and mudslides across asia as he offered prayers on saturday for victims of the disasters - afp
russian wildfires threaten with radioactive smoke. - environmentalists warned this week that wildfires in russia were burning forests near chernobyl, sending radioactive smoke downwind. russian officials immediately denied that anyone was in danger, but a group of international scientists has been studying the risks and says the danger is real - npr
fires threaten russian nuclear site as smog returns. - amid the worst ever heatwave in its history, russia has for days battled to cut back hundreds of blazes across the country, including flames in a nature reserve near its top nuclear research centre in sarov, a town still closed to foreigners as in soviet times - afp
walkers send not-too-warm message to pollies on climate. - thousands of supporters of the annual walk against warming have wound their way through the streets of brisbane in a stark reminder that tackling climate change remains a key issue for the 2010 federal election. - brisbane times
cloned beef causing uproar in britain traced to wisconsin cow. - beef from a cloned cow from wisconsin is causing concern in britain even though the u.s. food and drug administration considers such beef safe, and doesn't regulate milk or meat from offspring of cloned animals nor require labeling - wilwaukee journal sentinal
paris becoming perfect place to pedal. - three years after launching a widely copied bike rental scheme, paris is stepping up efforts to turn itself into a bicycle-friendly capital on a par with cycling havens like amsterdam and berlin - reuters
former dollar tree employee sues for violation of fmla. - dollar tree inc. fired a merrimack man who managed some 16 stores in new england partly in retaliation for trying to protect the public from chinese merchandise contaminated with heavy metals like lead, according to a lawsuit that moved to federal court last week - new hampshire business review
bp oil claims: 'takes too long to get anything done'. - the press-register is following the experiences of oil spill victims seeking damage claims from bp - mobile press register
gov. bob riley, attorney general troy king trade jabs over bp lawsuits. -as attorney general troy kiing moves forward with litigation against bp, gov. bob riley is seeking to limit king's negotiating power in the landmark case - mobile press register
plan for canada-texas pipeline scrutinized. - a proposed pipeline that would ferry canadian crude oil to texas refineries has run afoul of the recharged federal push to protect minorities and the poor from an overburden of pollution - barre montpelier times argus
china mudslides were predicted 13 years ago. - thirteen years ago two chinese scientists published a paper warning that following “the destruction of the eco-system” in zhouqu, “a rainstorm will carry debris down the gully, destroying farmland, houses, roads, bridges, water facilities, and power systems and causing death and injury.” - christian science monitor
moscow 'hiding heatstroke cases' after death rate jumps. - doctors in moscow are being told not to diagnose heatstroke as a cause of death after a jump in the mortality rate during the heatwave, russia media say - bbc
lake mead's water level plunges as 11-year drought lingers. - lake mead, the enormous reservoir of colorado river water that hydrates arizona, nevada, california and northern mexico, is receding to a level not seen since it was first being filled in the 1930s, stoking existential fears about water supply in the parched southwest - greenwire
u.n. warns of second wave of pakistani flood deaths. - the united nations appealed on wednesday for $459 million in aid for flood-hit pakistan, warning of a second wave of death among sick, hungry survivors unless help arrived quickly - reuters
atrazine threatens public health like another agent orange. -when enough doctors and scientists came together and pored over mountains of studies not considered important by the epa, they discovered that agent orange was responsible for a wide variety of serious health conditions. this time the culprit has a new name: atrazine. - eureka times standard
massive damage to mangroves from mumbai oil spill. - the oil spill from msc chitra has caused massive damage to the 25-kilometer stretch of mangroves in and around the city, maharashtra environment secretary valsa nair singh said on friday - hindu india
Saturday, August 14, 2010
skippy's saturday nite music club
gibbs is no stranger
on november 7, 2003, a strange new group no one had ever heard of called "americans for jobs & healthcare" was quietly formed and soon thereafter began running a million dollar operation including political ads against then-frontrunner democratic presidential candidate howard dean. the commercials ripped dean over his positions or past record on gun rights, trade and medicare growth. but the most inflammatory ad used the visual image of osama bin laden as a way to raise questions about dean's foreign policy credibility. while the spots ran, americans for jobs through its then-spokesman, robert gibbs, a former kerry campaign employee refused to disclose its donors. - common dreams(h/t - crooks and liars)
tweet of the day
dear @newtgingrich, bin laden is waging war against infidels, not infidelity. you're safe.
drinking liberally in new milford ponders low voter turnout
coyote mercury builds a cigar box guitar
daisy finds a giant moth, and we mean giant!
Friday, August 13, 2010
skippy's friday nite music club
tweet of the day
darthvader do you like piña coladas & gettin' caught in the rain? if you're not into yoda, write to me and we'll escape.
stephanie...you go girl!
the words heard 'round the liberal media this morning. "i am a gay woman."
stephanie. you make my morning. you have made my morning for years. i have never cared who you bedded, it didn't make you funnier...nor less so. i admire your courage to come out on the air. in all honesty, i am releaved i don't have to battle you for those guys on our mutual "future husbands" list. although, i understand that i might have to do some mud wrestling with you over the fireman. but, fortunately, you can keep your boxed wine...i prefer mine in bottles.
down the penrose lane
more @ penrose on politics!
Thursday, August 12, 2010
skippy's thursday nite music club
bp is going after alaska next
that would be funny if it weren’t so dangerous. bp is making this claim to ease the way for approval of its massive ultra-extended-range oil project on the north slope of alaska, in prudhoe bay. bp's original design for the project had the drilling starting from a drilling rig offshore, in the waters of prudhoe bay. bp conducted an environmental review of sorts and obtained approval from the minerals management service (now the bureau of ocean energy management, regulation and enforcement). then bp changed the design from a drilling rig in the ocean to one located on an artificial island that is connected to the shore by a long causeway. bp did not conduct any additional environmental review, nor was it asked to by mms. after the deepwater horizon blowout in april, 2010, when talk of a moratorium on offshore drilling began, bp took the view that this project was not offshore. amusing, no? - nrdc blog
and now, a word from the "unprofessional left"
what caught our eye, however, were the myriad of comments left by regular folks (we assume, non-bloggers, non-pundits and non-media-types). almost to a letter they agreed with, and even amplified, what krugman had to say:
well, mr. president, if it were easy to do, why would we need you? getting the right thing done even if it's hard is what leadership is all about. i know you'd rather be a great one term president than a mediocre two-termer, but presidents who truly are great in their first term are usually not one term presidents. - allan, ohio
perino would be packing her bags five minutes later, because the right controlled the bush administration. the left, now defined as anyone to the left of sen. ben nelson, controls nothing.
and now, we on the left dare not have the temerity to attempt even an occasional hint of influence over the president we elected.
so gibbs is angry? how should we feel? - bob, pennsylvania
maddow reduces gibbs to giblets
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
skippy's wednesday nite music club
mad about robert gibbs and president obama
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
skippy's tuesday nite music club
it's the professional right, mr. gibbs
the ultimate bridge to nowhere
the producers: ground zero mosque hell & scream wilder, or: springtime for gutfeld
case in point: that which the press has conveniently labeled (or rather, continued to label, taking thier cues from the right wing) as the "ground zero mosque."
now, in their fevered minds, conservatives think that there is nothing more outrageous than the idea that a group of muslims want to build a mosque at ground zero of the world trade center disaster (unless it involves william ayers or the whitey tape).
there is, of course, a few problems w/this premise, if one chooses to live in reality. for instance, among other things, the "ground zero mosque" is
1) not at ground zero
2) not simply a mosque
3) not the only or first mosque in that neighborhood
4) not the only mosque near a target of 9/11
5) not going to be utilized by radical islamo-fascists who hate america
6) not the most disgusting, sleazy thing in that area
moreover, the cordoba project (the actual name of the proposed development, how hard is it to say those words rather than "ground zero mosque"? it's one frakkin' syllable more!) has been approved by the city of new york, and mayor bloomberg has endorsed it as well.
but that's not going to stop the hardly-ever-right wing from getting the vapors. rev. wright has turned out to be a non-starter, the "naacp is racist for calling us racists!" came back and bit them on the ass, so the wingers have come up w/a new reason to throw tantrums. and, unfortunately, the media is carrying water for them on this one.
one interesting development out this all, however, is the announcement by right-wing commentator greg gutfeld that he is gay. maha tells us how gutfeld has described plans to open a gay bar near the cordoba project. apparently out of snarky spite:
the person who came up with this idea says “i am planning to build and open the first gay bar that caters not only to the west, but also islamic gay men.” somehow, i suspect the many gay bars already in manhattan cater to muslim men already. further the entire bleeping village is only about a five- to ten-minute cab ride from the cordoba house site. so i doubt a gay bar for men would do much business in that particular location. but, hey, if the guy wants to waste his money, who am i to disagree?
[update: andy sullivan loves this idea and thinks here should be an initiative to open gay bars next to all churches, temples, mosques and synagogues that preach discrimination against homosexuals. works for me, although in most communities you couldn't do it because of zoning laws.]
here's to greg gutfeld for coming out of the closet! altho it's been pointed out that there's already more than a few gay bars in the neighborhood already, there's always room for a right-winger to pull a chely wright (believe us, we struggled mightily to get a pun in there, but alas, no dice; hey, it took us days to get the title of this entire post right, and that's the best we could do).
contract on america
and in that same vein, dave johnson thinks that taxes aren't theft, tax cuts are theft
Monday, August 09, 2010
skippy's monday nite music club
nagasaki - 9 august 1945
how's that tea baggin' thing working out for ya?
local groups have been left to literally pass hats seeking donations at their meetings or rely on their organizers’ bank accounts, while some national groups have failed to live up to their bold fundraising predictions.
“i don’t blame them, since most of these people are so new to the process, and they don’t know anything beyond the protests, but at the end of the day, the energy and the passion will only take you so far,” said ned ryun, president of american majority, a nonprofit group that teaches grass-roots conservative activists how to influence the political process. “without money, nothing quite works like it could.” ...
eric odom, an early tea party organizer, in late november announced the creation of a new political action committee, estimating that small-dollar donations from the movement’s grass-roots activists would yield as much as $500,000 in seed money. but the group stopped filing mandatory reports with the federal election commission after disclosing that it raised just $13,000 in december, and odom recently told politico, “we no longer operate under the pac and are working in another direction.”
and the websites of the fec and the internal revenue service show several tea party groups that filed the initial paperwork to form political committees last year but have yet to file additional reports indicating that they’ve raised any money.