Daily Archive: 08/11/2010

Aug 11 2010

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 BP oil spill lawsuits sent to Louisiana, storm delays final well kill

by Matt Davis, AFP

Tue Aug 10, 6:39 pm ET

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (AFP) – Civil lawsuits related to the BP oil spill were sent to a Louisiana judge Tuesday as an impending storm delayed efforts to finally kill the runaway well deep in the Gulf of Mexico.

The British energy giant is expected to get a far cooler reception in New Orleans than it would have received if the cases had been assigned to a judge in Big Oil’s headquarters of Houston, Texas, as BP had sought.

A judicial panel said New Orleans was the most appropriate place because Louisiana is the “geographic and psychological center of gravity” for the litigation.

Aug 11 2010

Punting the Pundits:

Punting the Punditsis an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.

Jonathan Cohn’s premise here is that Liberals are unhappy with Obama because he  failed to move a more progressive agenda but the truth is Obama was not a Liberal to start. The major criticism from Liberals comes from the fact that Obama has adopted the most horrendous policies of the Bush administration as his own and expanded them, something the Obama loyalists would be screaming about if the President were McCain.

Jonathan Cohn: What Do Liberals Want From Obama?

Not surprisingly, conservatives are unhappy with President Obama. Somewhat surprisingly, liberals are too–or, at least, a lot of liberal commentators.

On July 4, Robert Kuttner spoke for many of them when he wrote, on the Huffington Post, that “we voted our hopes that events could compel Obama to govern as a progressive. We are still waiting.” Bob was primarily upset about Obama’s failure to push through a new stimulus package. But he also criticized Obama over health care (for not getting passionate about it until the last minute) and the Gulf oil disaster (for not taking a harder line on British Petroleum).

Bob is my old boss and mentor, not to mention a good friend. I share his frustrations over the policies that have (and haven’t) come out of Washington lately. But to suggest that Obama hasn’t governed as a progressive seems pretty wrong to me.

Aug 11 2010

On This Day in History: August 11

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour a cup of your favorite morning beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

August 11 is the 223rd day of the year (224th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 142 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1934, the first Federal prisoners arrived at Alcatraz.

A group of federal prisoners classified as “most dangerous” arrives at Alcatraz Island, a 22-acre rocky outcrop situated 1.5 miles offshore in San Francisco Bay. The convicts–the first civilian prisoners to be housed in the new high-security penitentiary–joined a few dozen military prisoners left over from the island’s days as a U.S. military prison.

Alcatraz was an uninhabited seabird haven when it was explored by Spanish Lieutenant Juan Manuel de Ayala in 1775. He named it Isla de los Alcatraces, or “Island of the Pelicans.” Fortified by the Spanish, Alcatraz was sold to the United States in 1849. In 1854, it had the distinction of housing the first lighthouse on the coast of California. Beginning in 1859, a U.S. Army detachment was garrisoned there, and from 1868 Alcatraz was used to house military criminals. In addition to recalcitrant U.S. soldiers, prisoners included rebellious Indian scouts, American soldiers fighting in the Philippines who had deserted to the Filipino cause, and Chinese civilians who resisted the U.S. Army during the Boxer Rebellion. In 1907, Alcatraz was designated the Pacific Branch of the United States Military Prison.

In 1934, Alcatraz was fortified into a high-security federal penitentiary designed to hold the most dangerous prisoners in the U.S. penal system, especially those with a penchant for escape attempts. The first shipment of civilian prisoners arrived on August 11, 1934. Later that month, more shiploads arrived, featuring, among other convicts, infamous mobster Al Capone. In September, George “Machine Gun” Kelly, another luminary of organized crime, landed on Alcatraz.

By decision of Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, the penitentiary was closed on March 21, 1963. It was closed because it was far more expensive to operate than other prisons (nearly $10 per prisoner per day, as opposed to $3 per prisoner per day at Atlanta), half a century of salt water saturation  had severely eroded the buildings, and the bay was being badly polluted by the sewage from the approximately 250 inmates and 60 Bureau of Prisons families on the island. The United States Penitentiary in Marion, Illinois, a traditional land-bound prison, opened that same year to serve as a replacement for Alcatraz.

The entire Alcatraz Island was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976, and was further declared a National Historic Landmark in 1986. In 1993, the National Park Service published a plan entitled Alcatraz Development Concept and Environmental Assessment.  This plan, approved in 1980, doubled the amount of Alcatraz accessible to the public to enable visitors to enjoy its scenery and bird, marine, and animal life, such as the California slender salamander.

Today American Indian groups such as the International Indian Treaty Council hold ceremonies on the island, most notably, their “Sunrise Gatherings” every Columbus and Thanksgiving Day.

Aug 11 2010

Prime Time

Keith and Rachel.  I don’t know why I’m bothering to post anything else since all you all (that means my vast audience and all their cousins) ‘professional’ lefties will no doubt be fixated on Cable News Liars just as you were when you fired Shirley Sherrod.

Oh wait, that was Obama.

I’ll be particularly interested in how Rachel handles this since except for DADT she’s a consistent Obamabot.

I had the great pleasure today of voting against EVERY SINGLE INCUMBENT in my Democratic Primary because I Vote.

Every Time.

So thanks for the kick in the balls Barack.  It’s a real motivator with real consequences.  I hope you and your pack of 11 Dimensional Chess Masters have a great November.

You’re a bunch of privileged pampered morons.

But here in Real ‘Murica we don’t whore ourselves for a living and we have other interests.

Later-

Dave is in re-runs.  Jon has Jason Bateman, Stephen Dylan Ratigan.  Alton does Ice Cream.

The Invisible Hand of Fate.

Yahoo TV Listings

Aug 11 2010

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 BP makes first deposit into Gulf disaster fund

by Michael Mathes, AFP

Mon Aug 9, 7:00 pm ET

WASHINGTON (AFP) – BP made its first deposit into the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster fund on Monday, while top executives were summoned to the White House to pledge their long-term commitment to restoring the region.

BP, which is eager to turn a corner on the disaster, said it had made an initial deposit of three billion dollars into the 20-billion-dollar US-managed fund to compensate residents and businesses battered by the spill.

“The purpose of the escrow account was to assure those adversely affected by the spill that we indeed intend to stand behind our commitment to them and to the American taxpayers,” BP’s incoming CEO Bob Dudley said in a statement.