07/28/2012 archive

BCA: Fearmonging with a twist

I’ve discussed the BCA (Budget Control Act of 2011) both here and here and the fact that the MIC aided by Republicans and Democrats through the use of propaganda campaigns are attempting to use fear as a tactic to override the, well any “cuts” to the Defense budget. The facts mean nothing to these people obviously.

Now enter the ties between industry and congress to propagate behind closed doors the expectations of those that have become used to and flourishes on the peoples dime.

Key Senate Staffer on Military Issues Got Big Payout From Lockheed Martin

Former Lockheed vice president Ann Elise Sauer was hired by Sen. John McCain in February as the top Republican staffer on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The revolving door swings regularly in Washington, but the size of the compensation package Sauer received from Lockheed when she left the company is notable. A financial disclosure form shows the defense giant gave Sauer $1.6 million in compensation around the time she took a buyout in January 2011.

No worries, just ask, answers are at the ready.

Health and Fitness News

Welcome to the Stars Hollow Health and Fitness News weekly diary. It will publish on Saturday afternoon and be open for discussion about health related issues including diet, exercise, health and health care issues, as well as, tips on what you can do when there is a medical emergency. Also an opportunity to share and exchange your favorite healthy recipes.

Questions are encouraged and I will answer to the best of my ability. If I can’t, I will try to steer you in the right direction. Naturally, I cannot give individual medical advice for personal health issues. I can give you information about medical conditions and the current treatments available.

You can now find past Health and Fitness News diaries here and on the right hand side of the Front Page.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

An Array of Summer Squash

Grilled Patty Pan "Steaks"

Walk through any farmers’ market in July and you will see such an array of summer squash: yellow and green zucchini, yellow crooknecks, round green rondelles de Nice, light green Calabasas, and pattypans in varying sizes and shades of green and yellow. This week I began thinking about whether certain types of summer squash lend themselves to particular types of dishes. If we dice the squash, no matter what they look like in the market they are often no longer distinguishable when cooked.

~Martha Rose Shulman~

Grilled or Roasted Pattypan ‘Steaks’ With Italian Salsa Verde

This is a perfect dish for great big pattypan squash, cut into juicy steaklike slices.

Seared Summer Squash and Egg Tacos

At breakfast, lunch or dinner, these hearty vegetarian tacos deliver a delicious seared flavor.

White Bean, Summer Squash and Tomato Ragout

This hearty mixture is satisfying on its own or as an accompaniment to pasta or whole grains.

Zucchini and Apricot Muffins

These not-too-sweet whole-wheat muffins are a good destination for a surplus of summer squash.

Summer Squash and Red Rice Salad With Lemon and Dill

Thinly sliced squash is marinated in lemon juice and garlic to give this salad a flavorful punch.

Punting the Pundits

“Punting the Pundits” is 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.

Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

New York Times Editorial: The Long, Uphill Battle Against AIDS

The international AIDS conference in Washington has already made two points clear. There is no prospect that scientists will any time soon find the ultimate solutions to the AIDS epidemic, namely a vaccine that would prevent infection with the AIDS virus or a “cure” for people already infected with the virus. Even so, health care leaders already have many tools that have been shown in rigorous trials to prevent transmission of the virus, making it feasible to talk of controlling the epidemic within the foreseeable future. The only question is whether the nations of the world are willing to put up enough money and make the effort to do it.

An estimated 34.2 million people around the world are currently infected with H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS. According to the United Nations agency that tracks the disease, some 23.5 million of these live in sub-Saharan Africa and another 4.2 million in India and Southeast Asia. About 1.1 million live in the United States.

Eugene Robinson: Bush and His Open Heart

This is a moment for all Americans to be proud of the single best thing George W. Bush did as president: launching an initiative to combat AIDS in Africa that has saved millions of lives.

All week, more than 20,000 delegates from around the world have been attending the 19th International AIDS Conference here in Washington. They look like any other group of conventioneers, laden with satchels and garlanded with name tags. But some of these men women would be dead if not for Bush’s foresight and compassion.

Mark Weisbot: Expiration of Bush Tax Cuts for the 1% Are a Step Forward, But Not Nearly Enough

President Obama is currently confronting mostly Republican opponents over whether to extend the Bush tax cuts to the richest 1 percent of taxpayers.   Between 1979 and 2007, the richest 1 percent received three-fifths of all the income gains in the country.  Most of this went to the richest 10th of that 1 percent, people with an average income of $5.6 million (including capital gains).

So this is a no-brainer in terms of fairness: Allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire for the richest 1 percent of Americans would reverse some of the vast upward redistribution of income that has taken place since the late 1970s. However a couple of caveats are in order.  First, restoring these taxes for the rich and the super-rich would not by itself do anything for the weak economy, nor for the 23 million people who are unemployed, involuntarily working part time, or have given up looking for work.  In fact, by itself it would have a negative impact on the economy and employment in the immediate future if the federal government didn’t use the extra revenue to increase spending.

However, in the current political climate there is much political pressure to reduce the budget deficit, especially over the next few years. So taking back these tax cuts could help us avoid other budget cuts that will hurt people.  Or, alternatively, it could open more space for the federal government to engage in stimulus spending – which is what we need to move closer to full employment.

Joe Nocera: Addressing Poverty in Schools

About two years ago, Dr. Pamela Cantor gave a speech at a Congressional retreat put together by the Aspen Institute. Her talk was entitled “Innovative Designs for Persistently Low-Performing Schools.”

Cantor is a psychiatrist who specializes in childhood trauma. After 9/11, her organization, the Children’s Mental Health Alliance, was asked by New York City’s Department of Education to assess the impact of the attack on the city’s public school children. What she found were plenty of traumatized children – but less because of the terrorist attack than because of the simple fact that so many of them were growing up in poverty.

Steve Horn: Exposed: Pennsylvania Act 13 Overturned by Supreme Court, Originally an ALEC Model Bill

On July 26, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled PA Act 13 unconstitutional. The bill would have stripped away local zoning laws, eliminated the legal concept of a Home Rule Charter, limited private property rights, and in the process, completely disempowered town, city, municipal and county governments, particularly when it comes to shale gas development.

The Court ruled that Act 13 “…violates substantive due process because it does not protect the interests of neighboring property owners from harm, alters the character of neighborhoods and makes irrational classifications – irrational because it requires municipalities to allow all zones, drilling operations and impoundments, gas compressor stations, storage and use of explosives in all zoning districts, and applies industrial criteria to restrictions on height of structures, screening and fencing, lighting and noise.”

Act 13 – pejoratively referred to as “the Nation’s Worst Corporate Giveaway” by AlterNet reporter Steven Rosenfeld – would have ended local democracy as we know it in Pennsylvania.

David Sirota: Gold Medalists in Fake Outrage

Fake outrage is a little like pornography-hard to narrowly define, but you know it when you see it. It is the television pundit railing on the supposed “War on Christmas” or the radio host calling a woman a “slut” for the alleged crime of discussing contraception. It is the Democratic partisan pretending to be offended by John McCain’s expensive shoes, or the Republican partisan taking umbrage at President Obama for daring to repeat the truism that “if you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help.” And when it comes to the 2012 Olympics, it is the typical congressional leader criticizing American athletes’ uniforms for being made in China.

This has been the big story in the lead-up to the games, as top lawmakers from both parties are pretending to be upset that Team USA’s clothing was manufactured far away from home. The operative word, though, is “pretending.”

Our Treasury Secretary Was Chosen to Represent Bankers. Not You.

Cross posted at our new beta site Voices on the Square and in orange.

That’s right, and it was clear to everyone who opposed the pick of Tim Geithner from the start.  In his testimony yesterday on the NY Fed’s knowledge of the LIBOR scandal, Tim Geithner once again stated the falsity that the NY Fed was not a regulator (like he has before showing he’s either a liar or completely incompetent), when in fact he was one of the most important regulators, unknown to him, supposedly.

This was during the proceedings looking into the 100 cents on the dollar backdoor bailout of Goldman Sachs through AIG facilitated while he was President of the NY Fed.

COUNT 2: He wasn’t even a regulator! In Geithner’s own words during confirmation hearings in March: “First of all, I’ve never been a regulator…I’m not a regulator.” According to the New York fed bank’s Web site, that was your job!!

Quoting from the Fed’s website: “As part of our core mission, we supervise and regulate financial institutions in the Second District.” That district of course is the epicenter for bailed out banks and billion dollar bonuses.

It is not just the responsibility of Fed Board governors like Tim Geithner said in his testimony yesterday while trying to inflate the case for his so called “intervention” that wasn’t on LIBOR. This lack of knowledge and corruption bothers me and it also bothers me that so many don’t care, because there is an election. I feel like we are all being lulled to sleep every night by MSNBC and the partisan cable news 2012 election war syndrome.

Shortly after the President was elected, there were many naive Democrats who claimed Giethner was “a brilliant pick” merely because the President picked him which is always the criterion, sadly. I saw it as the beginning of the end of any chance of a functioning financial system that we were promised during the 2008 election by this President.  That’s why I got involved in 2008, and that’s why a lot of us are unmotivated to say the least.

You see, to be making excuses for Tim Geithner even now while not even understanding the responsibilities of the NY Fed is outright embarrassing and immoral for all the damage it causes.  

On This Day In History July 28

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

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

July 28 is the 209th day of the year (210th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 156 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1868, following its ratification by the necessary three-quarters of U.S. states, the 14th Amendment, guaranteeing to African Americans citizenship and all its privileges, is officially adopted into the U.S. Constitution.


In the decades after its adoption, the equal protection clause was cited by a number of African American activists who argued that racial segregation denied them the equal protection of law. However, in 1896, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Plessy v. Ferguson that states could constitutionally provide segregated facilities for African Americans, so long as they were equal to those afforded white persons. The Plessy v. Ferguson decision, which announced federal toleration of the so-called “separate but equal” doctrine, was eventually used to justify segregating all public facilities, including railroad cars, restaurants, hospitals, and schools. However, “colored” facilities were never equal to their white counterparts, and African Americans suffered through decades of debilitating discrimination in the South and elsewhere. In 1954, Plessy v. Ferguson was finally struck down by the Supreme Court in its ruling in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.

The Fourteenth Amendment (Amendment XIV) to the United States Constitution was adopted on July 29, 1868 as one of the Reconstruction Amendments.

Its Citizenship Clause provides a broad definition of citizenship that overruled the decision in Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857), which held that blacks could not be citizens of the United States.

Its Due Process Clause prohibits state and local governments from depriving people (individual and corporate) of life, liberty, or property without certain steps being taken. This clause has been used to make most of the Bill of Rights applicable to the states, as well as to recognize substantive rights and procedural rights.

Its Equal Protection Clause requires each state to provide equal protection under the law to all people within its jurisdiction. This clause later became the basis for Brown v. Board of Education (1954), the Supreme Court decision which precipitated the dismantling of racial segregation in the United States.

The there is that pertinent and pesky Article 4:

Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.

Validity of public debt

Section 4 confirmed the legitimacy of all United States public debt appropriated by the Congress. It also confirmed that neither the United States nor any state would pay for the loss of slaves or debts that had been incurred by the Confederacy. For example, several English and French banks had lent money to the South during the war. In Perry v. United States (1935), the Supreme Court ruled that under Section 4 voiding a United States government bond “went beyond the congressional power.” Section 4 has been cited (during the debate in July of 2011 over whether to raise the U.S. debt ceiling) by some legal experts and Democratic members in the U.S. House Democratic caucus, as giving current President Barack Obama the authority to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling if the Congress does not appear to be able to pass an agreement by Tuesday, August 2, 2011. The White House Press Office and President Obama have said that it will not be resorted to, though Democratic members of the House that support the move are formally petitioning him to do so “for the sake of the country’s fiscal stability.” A final resolution to the crisis has not yet been decided upon.

Formula One 2012: Hungaroring Qualifying

The big news is that Red Bull’s engine torque mapping has been ruled illegal in response to complaints by McLaren that it’s going to set off an expensive race to duplicate.  Unknown how much this will effect them.  Lotus and McLaren reworking their aero packages, McLaren with apparent success.

Vettel had to give up his place after putting all 4 wheels off passing Button at Hockenheim.

I’m not sure what the compounds are and it probably doesn’t matter yet.  It was damp both Practices and mostly all the running was on Inters (slicks had a tendency to slide).  Race day tomorrow they predict downpours that make Wets questionable, worst weather in 3 weekends (and that’s saying something).  Bring your paper boats to float in the gutters while you sit out the red flags damp.

Or not.  Today is supposed to be dry and I suppose one of the reasons the McLaren aero is working better is that they’ve been able to get the dry laps to test it.  Pirelli is still frustrated by it’s inability to test the new extreme hards they intend to introduce next season.

The Hungaroring is flat and twisty and reminds drivers of Monaco because it’s difficult to overtake, so the question of Qualifying vs. race setup could factor in.  It’s a great favorite of the Finns and they come in droves.  Expect them to be rooting for Raikkonen (actually picked as a potential winner by some of the commentators) and Kovalainen.

My last year’s coverage is here and here.  2010 is here and here.

XXX Olympiad- Day 4

Nightmares I tells ya.  Fortunately I have a lot to write while I can’t sleep.

Broadcast Schedule

Time Network Sport Competitors
4 am Vs. Women’s Beach Volleyball CHN v RUS
5 am Vs. Women’s Badminton (singles) KOR v MLY
5 am NBC Cycling (road) all
6 am Vs. Women’s Shooting (Medal) all
6:30 am Vs. Women’s Volleyball CHN v SRB
7 am MS Women’s Football JPN v SWE
7 am Bravo Tennis (first round) all
8 am Vs. Fencing (Women’s foil) USA v tbd
8:30 am Vs. Women’s Handball ESP v KOR
8:30 am CNBC Men’s Boxing (bantam and middle weight) elimination
9 am MS Table Tennis (Women’s singles) USA v CRO
9:30 am Vs. Women’s Football (group) NZL v BRA
9:30 am MS Fencing (Women’s foil Sweet 16, Quarterfinal) all
10:30 am MS Women’s Football (highlights) CAN v RSA
11 am NBC Swimming (Men’s 400m IM, 400m Free, Women’s 4x100m Relay, 400m Free) all
11 am Vs Table Tennis (Men’s singles) USA v PRK
11:30 am MS Men’s Beach Volleyball USA v CAN
11:30 am NBC Women’s Basketball USA v CRO
noon Vs. Women’s Football (group) USA v COL
noon MS Women’s Football (group) GBR v CMR
1:30 pm NBC Swimming (400m IM) (Medal) all
1:30 pm Vs Equestrian (Dressage) all
2 pm MS Table Tennis (Women’s singles) USA v MEX
2:30 pm NBC Rowing (9 events) all
2:30 pm Vs. Women’s Football (group) FRA v PRK
2:30 pm MS Fencing (Women’s foil) (Medal) all
3 pm NBC Women’s Volleyball USA v KOR
3:30 pm CNBC Men’s Boxing (bantam and middle weight) elimination
3:30 pm MS Men’s Badminton (doubles) USA v KOR
4:30 pm Vs. Women’s Handball NOR v FRA
5 pm NBC Men’s Beach Volleyball USA v RSA
5:30 pm Vs. Archery (Men’s Team) (Medal) all
8 pm NBC Swimming (400m IM) (Medal), Men’s Gymnastics (Team), Women’s Beach Volleyball USA v ???
12:30 am NBC Late night roundup
1:30 am NBC Prime Time repeat
3 am CNBC Boxing roundup
4 am Vs. Women’s Beach Volleyball ITA v RUS

All this is sourced through the NBC Olympics broadcast schedule.  Competition starts again at 6 am tomorrow.  I’ve done a full day because as you see the evening isn’t much, yet.  Also I have evening and afternoon appointments.

Now might also be a good time to mention that we’ll be providing coverage for Formula One Hungaroring at 8 am today for Qualifying and Sunday at the same time for the race.

Competitions designated by (Medal) will award winners that day.  ‘all’ means not specified.  Sometimes NBC especially does mashups and doesn’t include event or competitor information.  Elimination means no round robin, one and done.

Today’s Cycling event pits all the names you remember from Le Tour back on the road.  Wiggins is favored but that’s just sentiment, this race tends to favor a Mark Cavendish type.  No teams.

But these guys are professionals.

So they are.  Just like Men’s Basketball.  The Women are coached by Geno of UCONN.  Rafalca will dance today.  Phelps starts collecting his golds.  Badminton!  Rowing!  Table Tennis!  Fencing!  All those nerd sports you never see.

These schedules are a place for you to make sure you don’t miss a sport you like and share your observations.  Have fun today!

Popular Culture 20120727: John Alec Entwistle

I apologize for being absent last week.  I had a nasty cold and started on this very piece but just did not have the energy to finish it.

I am still doing background on the series about Jethro Tull, but and not ready to start writing the piece yet.  They were much more complicated insofar as the band lineup goes than most of the bands about which I have written, so it is taking some time.

Tonight we are going to look at who I consider to be the greatest rock and roll bass player who ever drew breath, Thunderfingers, aka The Ox.  But he was much more than a great bass player.  He was outstanding on brass instruments, and much of the early work by The Who has a lot of French horn in it.

He was also an accomplished songwriter and singer, and many of his songs were performed by The Who.  Songwriting is much more lucrative than merely performing, so he was always to get more of his songs on records.

XXX Olympiad- Opening Ceremonies

It will be a hot time in the Olympic Village tonight.

Of course every Olympics begin with the Opening Ceremonies in which the host nation showcases its culture, its history, and terrifying lockstep unity.

I can’t believe that one of the choreographed pieces is a 40 foot high Voldemort attacked by 30 Mary Poppins.  This is why I seldom bother with Opening and Closing at all  Another thing to watch for is Barack Obama’s new :30 spot, if you care for that sort of thing.

“World Class Feats of Athleticism”

London 2012: Unfamiliar Olympic sports explained

David Hills, The Guardian

Saturday 21 July 2012 17.01 EDT

Whether it is Olympic badminton, beach volleyball, handball, shooting, Taekwondo, trampoline, fencing or BMX cycling, you need to know a foil from an épée, and endos from bunnyhops.

He left out Sailing and Wrestling in the lede.

Of course, these used to be ‘sports’ too-

When the Olympics Included Mud Fighting and Tug of War

By Bill Mallon, Bloomberg News

Jul 23, 2012 6:30 PM ET

In 1900, a series of obstacles were set up in the Seine River in Paris. Swimmers lined up for a 200-meter (656-feet) race in which they had to climb over a pole and a row of boats, then swim under another row of boats. That was the only time the 200-meter Obstacle Swim Race was contested at the Olympics.

Also in 1900, cricket was contested for the only time at the Olympics. The match was purportedly between French and British teams, but the French contingent was actually composed of British expatriates working in Paris at the time. Croquet also was played in Paris, then replaced in St. Louis in 1904 with a variant known as roque. Roque was named after croquet, by dropping the first and last letters, but played with smaller balls and much tighter wickets. Roque was hailed as the Game of the Century in 1904, but only four Americans competed and today it is essentially defunct.

Tug of war was quite popular, being held in 1900, 1904, 1908, 1912 and 1920, before falling from the program. Lacrosse was contested in 1904 and 1908, and in 1904, a Mohawk Indian team from southern Ontario placed third.

In 1900, 1908, 1920, 1924 and 1936, polo was an Olympic sport, falling from grace only after Berlin in 1936. It was the last sport to have been discontinued, until baseball and softball were ousted from the 2012 games. They are to be replaced in 2016 by golf and rugby sevens — a smaller, shorter variant of rugby union. These two sports won out over karate, squash, roller skating and ballroom dancing. — but neither will be new to the Olympics. Golf was contested at those unusual Olympics of 1900 and 1904, and was on the program for both 1908 and 1920, though it was canceled both times. Rugby tournaments were held in 1900, 1908, 1920 and 1924. The U.S. won gold twice, in 1920 and 1924 — which is why when the sport returns in four years, the defending champions will be those great practitioners of the game, the U.S.

The Joy of Six: Discontinued Olympic sports

Scott Murray, The Guardian

Friday 6 July 2012

The plunge for distance was essentially the long jump for divers. Contestants would plunge into the drink from a standing start, in order to propel themselves underwater as far along the pool as possible. Their total distance would be measured at the point they came back up for air, or wherever they’d got to after 60 seconds beneath the surface, whichever came first. Plungers weren’t allowed to propel themselves through the water – after the initial dive, they had to remain motionless.

There were plenty of gun-based oddities back in the day. At the 1900 Paris Games, slavering maniacs paid upwards of 200 francs for the pleasure of bringing down real live pigeons from the air with their pieces. Leon de Lunden of Belgium took the cash prize of 2,000 francs for his unmatched total of 21 murders.

At the unofficial 1906 Games in Athens, a duelling pistol contest was held, which saw contestants firing at dummies tarted up in frock coats and top hats. The bullseye was situated on the thorax. Bang! Right on the windpipe.

Running target (1972-2004) saw a life-size cutout of a boar cross a 10-metre gap in two-and-a-half seconds; contestants had to shoot it in the ring (please behave) 30 times, then another 30 times at half speed. The precursor to this event was the running deer; you can fill in the gaps.

In Equestrian competition we have seen such events as Long Jump, High Jump, Hunter and Hack, and Four-in-Hand Mail Coach.

My doggie friend is still quite pissed that Softball has been replaced by Golf.

Our good buddy Mitt didn’t strap Rafalca to the roof of his Bain Capital Gulfstream to drop him off, he’s not even going to visit; but he did use his Salt Lake City cred to win the hearts and minds of his United Kingdom hosts.

David Cameron hits back at Mitt Romney over London 2012 doubts

Owen Gibson, Olympics editor, The Guardian

Thursday 26 July 2012

Romney said the fallout from the G4S security fiasco and a threatened strike by immigration officials were “disconcerting” and questioned whether British people would get behind the Games.

“Do they come together and celebrate the Olympic moment? And that’s something which we only find out once the Games actually begin. It is hard to know just how well it will turn out,” said Romney.

But Cameron, who was due to meet Romney later on Thursday, said: “In terms of people coming together, the torch relay demonstrated that this is not a London Games, this is not an England Games but this is a United Kingdom Games. We’ll show the world we’ve not only come together as a United Kingdom but are extremely good at welcoming people from across the world.”

Asked whether the Games and Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony, which will be watched by a predicted 1 billion people, offered an opportunity rebrand the country, Cameron said: “We don’t need to rebrand Britain. Britain has a great brand. I hope people will see all the things they like about Britain’s past, our history, our contributions to world development. But I also hope they will see a very open country and one that has an enormous amount to offer for the future.”

Olympic Games already have their share of controversies

By Shashank Bengali, McClatchy Newspapers

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Some 36,000 troops, police and hired contractors will stand guard at Olympic venues and on the streets of London and other cities. After the private security firm G4S acknowledged last week that it wouldn’t be able to furnish all of the 10,000 contractors it had agreed to, British officials called up additional service members to fill the gap.

The foul-up compounded what for many Londoners is beginning to seem like a long, costly summer, which began with a lavish diamond jubilee for Queen Elizabeth II and has coincided with ever bleaker economic news: The Office for National Statistics reported Wednesday that the economy had shrunk by 0.7 percent from April to June, a far worse contraction than had been forecast, deepening a double-dip recession that’s the severest in decades.

Meanwhile, the cost of staging the games has risen to several times the initial projection, exceeding even the infamous budget-busting standards of the 1996 Atlanta games. London’s now are expected to end up as the most expensive ever, at a cost of more than $14 billion.

Competition got under way Wednesday, but a women’s soccer match that involved Colombia and North Korea was delayed by an hour after North Korean players were introduced on a video with their faces next to the South Korean flag.

The BBC reported that the rather dramatic mix-up – the neighboring countries are still technically at war, having never signed a treaty after a cease-fire took effect in the 1950s Korean conflict – occurred at the studio that produced the pregame video. The Christian Science Monitor pronounced it perhaps the worst blunder by a host nation in the Olympics’ 116-year modern history.

If you are someone who think we are just ‘Exceptional’, you might be interested in this article from The GuardianLondon 2012 Olympics: 30 American athletes to watch out for.

Other than that they’ve tried to keep most of the spectacle ‘secret’, no spoilers, but you will find because of the time difference Opening Ceremony is already done.  Thank goodness NBC has tape delayed it for 7:30 pm.

Repeat at 2:30 am.  Regular events start tomorrow at 5 am.  Formula One Hungaroring Qualifying on Speed at 8 am.