09/02/2010 archive

The Week in Editorial Cartoons – Of Kings and Wingnut Clowns, with Special Comment

Crossposted at Daily Kos and Docudharma

John Sherffius

John Sherffius, Comics.com (Boulder Daily Camera)

When I see a 9/11 victim family on television, or whatever, I’m just like, “Oh shut up” I’m so sick of them because they’re always complaining. — Glenn Beck


Man is man because he is free to operate within the framework of his destiny.  He is free to deliberate, to make decisions, and to choose between alternatives.  He is distinguished from animals by his freedom to do evil or to do good and to walk the high road of beauty or tread the low road of ugly degeneracy. — Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Looks like I picked the wrong day to stop sniffing glue”

So another Oil Rig has exploded off the Louisiana coast.  According to the latest TV reports all 13 workers are safe, though at least one is injured.

What makes this funny in that sad ironic sense is that not only did Judge Martin Feldman, the severely conflicted by his Oil Industry investments guy who blocked the Obama Adminitration’s initial deepwater drilling moratorium, just blocked the second one; but only yesterday Mariner Energy, the company running the rig, and its parent company Apache, which is purchasing BP’s Gulf assets to help BP meet its liability for the Deepwater Horizon disaster, staged a protest in Houston over the moratorium.

Good thing we have all those oil eating bacteria.  I’m sure 75% of it will be gone in no time.

Unfortunately, as dday observes-

With the White House’s commission on oil spills wavering in the direction of lifting the moratorium, and the head of the Bureau of Ocean Energy hinting at the same thing, and now this tangle in the courts, I don’t think you’re going to see much more of a fight.

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.

E.J. Dionne Jr: A speech’s tall order

By insisting Tuesday evening that “it’s time to turn the page,” President Obama was talking about more than the Iraq war, and doing much more than reviving one of his most effective slogans from the 2008 campaign.

He was also trying to turn the page on a period in which he has found himself on the defensive, his party in a perilous position for November’s elections and his reputation for political mastery in doubt.

Obama’s Oval Office speech was resolutely nonpolitical in form but profoundly political in its implications. To rescue his party, Obama had to begin rebuilding his popularity, offer hope in a time of economic despair and restore confidence in the course on which he has set the nation.

Joan Walsh: Bush, Beck and Hagee

The president praises Bush, the media find Beck in bed with a Catholic hater, and deficits become the new WMD

A big news day. I found President Obama’s Iraq speech dispiriting. He deserves credit for withdrawing combat troops when he said he would, but our entanglement there is by no means over, and the growing role of private contractors in every realm of our involvement — including some form of what most people would consider combat — makes it hard to feel like things have fundamentally changed.

I was surprised, but I shouldn’t have been, by Obama’s kind words for his predecessor, George W. Bush. I didn’t expect Obama to excoriate the neocon chickenhawks who lied us into war, but I wasn’t entirely prepared for his praising the president who got us into this mess. But he did:

   It’s well known that he and I disagreed about the war from its outset. Yet no one could doubt President Bush’s support for our troops, or his love of country and commitment to our security. As I have said, there were patriots who supported this war, and patriots who opposed it.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

On This Day in History: September 2

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

September 2 is the 245th day of the year (246th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 120 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1969, America’s first automatic teller machine (ATM) makes its public debut, dispensing cash to customers at Chemical Bank in Rockville Center, New York. ATMs went on to revolutionize the banking industry, eliminating the need to visit a bank to conduct basic financial transactions. By the 1980s, these money machines had become widely popular and handled many of the functions previously performed by human tellers, such as check deposits and money transfers between accounts. Today, ATMs are as indispensable to most people as cell phones and e-mail.

Several inventors worked on early versions of a cash-dispensing machine, but Don Wetzel, an executive at Docutel, a Dallas company that developed automated baggage-handling equipment, is generally credited as coming up with the idea for the modern ATM. Wetzel reportedly conceived of the concept while waiting on line at a bank. The ATM that debuted in New York in 1969 was only able to give out cash, but in 1971, an ATM that could handle multiple functions, including providing customers’ account balances, was introduced.

ATMs eventually expanded beyond the confines of banks and today can be found everywhere from gas stations to convenience stores to cruise ships. There is even an ATM at McMurdo Station in Antarctica. Non-banks lease the machines (so-called “off premise” ATMs) or own them outright.

Morning Shinbun Thursday September 2

Thursday’s Headlines:

Earl’s gusts grow to 140 mph, aims at East

Stephen Hawking says universe not created by God


As U.S. deaths in Afghanistan rise, military families grow critical

Tesco’s US operation accused of bullying staff


Will Russia’s Bloggers Survive Censorship Push?

Focus on Holocaust led to suspension, says Jewish teacher

Middle East

Obama’s high-stakes gamble on peace deal that eluded predecessors

The trickiest issue in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks


Throw these infidels in jail

Mourners targeted in Lahore


Unions reject govt’s revised wage offer

Deadly riots in Mozambique over rising prices

Latin America

Felipe Calderon marks four years of reform efforts stymied by Mexico drug war

There is a Lot of Stupid Out There

with a lot of denial on the side.

h/t digby

The Permanent U.S. Bases in the Iraq the U.S. Is Supposedly Leaving

Hat tip to David Swanson at WarIsACrime.org.

“New markets for our goods stretch from Asia to the Americas”

“…we have not done what is necessary to shore up the foundation of our own prosperity. We have spent over a trillion dollars at war, often financed by borrowing from overseas. This, in turn, has short-changed investments in our own people, and contributed to record deficits. For too long, we have put off tough decisions on everything from our manufacturing base to our energy policy to education reform. As a result, too many middle class families find themselves working harder for less, while our nation’s long-term competitiveness is put at risk.”

Barack Obama, Oval Office Address on Iraq, August 31, 2010

Prime Time

Well, I’m trying a new TV Listing service tonight, Zap2It.  For some odd reason it turns up fine under XP Google and hardly at all under the customized Ubuntu default Google.

Country music.  Despise it and only listen to be polite when I have to.  Tonight is not one of those times.

Well, one thing it doesn’t do is improve the choices.


Dave hosts Donald Trump, Michelle Beadle, and Jukebox the Ghost.  Alton does more casserole, this time Green Bean.  Self-Medication.

Evening Edition

Evening Edition is an Open Thread

Now with 40 Top Stories.

From Yahoo News Top Stories

1 US deaths in Afghanistan hit record in 2010

by Lynne O’Donnell, AFP

Wed Sep 1, 12:18 pm ET

KABUL (AFP) – The toll of US soldiers killed in the Afghan war this year is the highest since the conflict began, an AFP count found, as NATO said Wednesday it had killed two insurgents for every soldier lost last month.

Military leaders say the spike in deaths reflects the deployment of additional troops into the Afghan theatre, which leads to a higher number of battlefield engagements with Taliban-led insurgents.

A total of 324 US soldiers have been killed in the Afghan war 2010, compared with 317 for all of 2009, according to AFP figures based on the independent icasualties.org website.