09/09/2012 archive

Rant of the Week: George Carlin

Lying Politicians And Words

This is an excerpt from George Carlin’s Brain Droppings, speech which he gave at the National Press Club on May 13, 1999.

An initiative is an idea that is going nowhere.

How much soft money can I collect in exchange for my core values?

The full video of the speech, in which he talked talked about America’s penchant for euphemism and about labeling minorities, is 56 minutes including his answers to questions from the audience.

h/t to Suzanne at FDL

On This Day In History September 9

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.

September 9 is the 252nd day of the year (253rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 113 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1776, Congress renames the nation “United States of America”.

On this day in 1776, the Continental Congress formally declares the name of the new nation to be the “United States” of America. This replaced the term “United Colonies,” which had been in general use.

In the Congressional declaration dated September 9, 1776, the delegates wrote, “That in all continental commissions, and other instruments, where, heretofore, the words ‘United Colonies’ have been used, the stile be altered for the future to the “United States.”

The Lee Resolution, also known as the resolution of independence, was an act of the Second Continental Congress declaring the United Colonies to be independent of the British Empire. First proposed on June 7, 1776, by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia, after receiving instructions from the Virginia Convention and its President, Edmund Pendleton  (in fact Lee used, almost verbatim, the language from the instructions in his resolution). Voting on the resolution was delayed for several weeks while support for independence was consolidated. On June 11, a Committee of Five  was appointed to prepare a document to explain the reasons for independence. The resolution was finally approved on July 2, 1776, and news of its adoption was published that evening in the Pennsylvania Evening Post and the next day in the Pennsylvania Gazette. The text of the document formally announcing this action, the United States Declaration of Independence, was approved on July 4.

Punting the Pundits: Sunday Preview Edition

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.

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

Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt

The Sunday Talking Heads:

Up with Chris Hayes: Joining Chris at 8am ET are: Jeremy Scahill, (@jeremyscahill), national security correspondent for The Nation; Walter Shapiro, (@waltershapiroPD) columnist for Yahoo News and the Columbia Journalism Review. He is currently covering his ninth presidential campaign; Sasha Issenberg, columnist for Slate.com, Washington correspondent for the “Monocle,” and author of “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns;” Peter Beinart, (@open_zion) senior writer for Newsweek/Daily Beast and founder of the blog Open Zion; Bob Shrum,(@BobShrum) democratic strategist, senior adviser to the 2004 Kerry-Edwards campaign and to the 2000 Gore presidential campaign, senior fellow at NYU’s Graduate School of Public Service; Hawaii Democratic Congressional candidate Tulsi Gabbard, former member of the Honolulu City Council and former Commission Commander and Captain of the Honolulu National Guard; Michelle Goldberg, (@michelleinbklyn) senior contributing writer for Newsweek/Daily Beast and author of “The Means of Reproduction: Sex, Power and the Future of the World;” Chris Hughes, co-founder of Facebook, founder of Jumo.com, and chief digital organizer of the 2008 Barack Obama Presidential Campaign; and Jacob Hacker, professor of political science at Yale University and co-author of “The Prosperity Agenda: What the World Wants from America and What We Need in Return.

This Week with George Stephanopolis:  Sunday on “This Week,” in his first talk show appearance since his nomination is  Republican vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

The  roundtable debates the Republican and Democratic conventions and the latest in the 2012 presidential contest, with Newark Mayor Cory Booker, co-chair of the Democratic platform committee; Sen. Rand Paul, (R-KY), author of the new book “Government Bullies“; ABC News’ George Will; ABC News’ Cokie Roberts; and Nobel Prize-winning New York Times columnist Paul Krugman.

Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: Mr. Schieffer will feature excerpts of CBS Evening News Anchor and Managing Editor Scott Pelley‘s interview with President Barack Obama two days after he formally accepted the Democratic nomination for president; White House Senior adviser David Plouffe; and  former Navy SEAL “Mark Owen,” whose appearance was altered with make-up and voice was disguised. author of “No Easy Day.”

On the political roundtable, the guests are New York Times Chief Washington Correspondent David Sanger, CBS News Political Director John Dickerson, Washington Post Columnist Michael Gerson and Vanity Fair Contributing Editor Dee Dee Myers.

The Chris Matthews Show: This week’s guests are Michael Duffy, TIME Magazine Assistant Managing Editor; Trish Regan, Bloomberg News; Kasie Hunt, Associated Press Political Reporter; and John Harris, Politico Editor-in-Chief.

Meet the Press with David Gregory: Om MTP this Sunday is GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

The roundtable guests are San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro; the Wall Street Journal‘s Peggy Noonan; the Washington Post‘s EJ Dionne; Fmr. Secretary of Education Bill Bennett; and NBC’s Political Director and Chief White House Correspondent, Chuck Todd.

State of the Union with Candy Crowley: Ms. Crowley’s guests are Gov. Jerry Brown (D-CA); former House Speaker Newt Gingrich; Democratic Convention speaker and the co-founder of CarMax, Austin Ligon, and Former Bush Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez; Peter Baker of The New York Times and A.B Stoddard of “The Hill

F1 2012: Autodromo Nazionale Monza

A couple of stories emerged during Qualifying.  The first is Alonso who marched steadily backwards in the time charts due to what they are calling swaybar problems.  Monza is a bad place to screw up if you’re wearing red because it’s Maronello’s home track and the boys at Marlboro UPC are watching quite closely.  This is why Qualifying high was good news for Massa who is reportedly hanging onto his job by a thread.

The other is track condition.  There have been an unexpected incidents of mechanical problems, some minor and others (gearbox, engine) not so minor.  Speculation is the uneven new paving is stressing the components.

Grosjean was suspended for a race because he caused that 4 car pile up in Turn 1 last week with Alonso, Hamilton, Kobayashi, and Perez.  Some observers consider this harsh, me not so much.  Starts are the most dangerous time in the race and he plowed into Hamilton as if he wasn’t even there.  He’s being replaced in the Lotus by d’Ambrosio.  Maldonado jumped the start at Spa and has suffered a 10 grid penalty.  di Resta didn’t use his gearbox 5 races in a row and has suffered a 5 grid penalty.

Pirelli is offering Hards and Mediums and is predicting 1 stop racing which will minimize pit advantage.  These are not the same Hards and Mediums that started the season.  At Spa and now here Pirelli has gone with narrower tires and a different compound that doesn’t degrade quite as quickly.  This is tempting teams to push them harder which is creating a situation where they could drive the wheels right off and suffer blow outs.

Speed coverage starts at 8 am.  Repeat at 12:30 am.  Pretty tables below.

Six In The Morning

On Sunday

Colombia’s Santos believes peace is possible

 President remains cautious about FARC but tells Al Jazeera peace deal is possible if there is “goodwill” on both sides.

Al Jazeera

Colombia’s president says he will not lower his guard against the country’s main rebel group, but he believes a peace deal is possible if there is “goodwill” on both sides.

“If there is goodwill from both parts, we will reach an agreement much sooner than people expect,” Juan Manuel Santos told Al Jazeera on Saturday, as peace talks between the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), aimed at ending half a century of war between the two sides, is set to kick off next month.

“I think the fundamental issues that are on the table, that we agreed to discuss and agree on in order to finalise the conflict, are not that difficult,” the president said in his first extensive interview with an international network.

Santos said he remained sceptical about FARC’s motives, and that the Colombian military and police had been instructed to intensify their offensive against the rebels as they entered the “last track of this conflict” and could not afford to lower their guard.

Sunday’s Headlines:

Controversial plan to split up Afghanistan

Tensions simmer after axe murderer’s pardon

DRC opposition figure seeks asylum from SA in Burundi

Following protests, Hong Kong backs down on Chinese patriotism classes

The Africa Express rolls into London

Live Long and Prosper

This is an Open Thread

What We Now Know

Readjusting Expectations Following Pres. Obama’s DNC Speech

This Saturday morning, Up with Chris Hayes guests Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, MSNBC contributor, communications director for Latino Decisions and visiting scholar at the University of Texas-Austin; Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), representing the 8th congressional district of New York. He is currently serving his 10th term in Congress; John McWhorter, Professor of Linguistics at Columbia University, contributing editor at the New Republic and Daily News columnist; Joe Weisenthal, (@thestalwart) deputy editor at Business Insider; and Up host Chris Hayes (@Chris Hayes) look back at the Democrats’ week in Charlotte, and discuss President Obama’s convention speech and the new expectations he’s set for his campaign.

Bomber Strikes Near NATO Office in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan – A suicide bomber on foot penetrated one of the most closely defended parts of Kabul on Saturday, blowing himself up outside a carpet shop a few hundred yards from international embassies and the walls of the NATO headquarters and killing at least six Afghan civilians, including some children.

The bombing punctuated a tense holiday in commemoration of a mujahedeen commander, killed in 2001, for which security had already been increased in Kabul. Clashes between his supporters and other ethnic groups and the police in a Kabul neighborhood left cars tipped over and on fire, police guard posts burning and at least two dead, an indication that ethnic tensions remain combustible here.

The blast did not kill any foreigners or harm NATO installations. But it showed the insurgents’ ability to reach inside the central district only a few hundred yards from the United States Embassy, the presidential palace and NATO compounds.

The Taliban claimed responsibility, saying the target was a nearby Central Intelligence Agency installation.

Jesse Jackson Jr. Home After Treatment For Depression At Mayo Clinic

CHICAGO – U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. has returned to his home in Washington after treatment for depression at Mayo Clinic, Jackson’s chief of staff in suburban Chicago said Friday.

“He’s at home in Washington convalescing with his wife and children,” Jackson aide Rick Bryant said. “Let’s hope he returns to work on Monday.”

Congress goes back into session Monday following its summer break.

Bryant said he’s not sure exactly when the Illinois congressman was discharged, and Mayo Clinic spokesman Chris Gade referred all questions to Jackson’s office. In a statement late Friday, the congressman’s wife, Chicago Alderman Sandi Jackson, said she and her husband were “thankful for the heartfelt prayers and kind thoughts from so many for our family.”

Jobs Report August 2012: US economy adds 96K jobs, rate falls to 8.1 pct.

September 7, 2012 (WASHINGTON) — U.S. employers added 96,000 jobs last month, a weak figure that could slow the momentum President Barack Obama hoped to gain from his speech Thursday night to the Democratic National Convention.

The unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from 8.3 percent in July. But that was only because more people gave up looking for jobs. People who are out of work are counted as unemployed only if they’re looking for a job.

The government also said Friday that 41,000 fewer jobs were created in July and June than first estimated. The economy has added just 139,000 jobs a month since the start of the year, below 2011’s average of 153,000.

Cash-short governments were a key reason the job market was weaker in June and July than first estimated. Federal, state and local governments cut 39,000 jobs in those months – above the earlier estimate of 18,000. In previous recoveries, governments have typically added jobs, not shed them.

Friday’s report was discouraging throughout. Hourly pay fell, manufacturers cut the most jobs in two years and the number of people in the work force dropped to its lowest level in 31 years.


What’s for Dinner? v7.06 The Cheesecake

As many of you know, last Tuesday was The Girl’s (henceforth referred to as The Woman) 20th birthday.  We had originally planned to bake a cheesecake together Sunday past, but she had a better idea.  She asked me very sweetly, “Do you know what would make this cake really special for me?  If you cooked it by yourself since it is my birthday cake”.  Of course I agreed!

I got all kinds of suggestions from the community here Saturday before last, and I appreciate all of them.  I finally took the basic recipe from the Kraft site and modified it, and the result was wonderful!

I shall give you the recipe first, then a photographic gallery with my comments about how to do this.  It is not hard to make a cheesecake that does not dry out or get weepy, but it is easy to mess one up irretrievably!  You should read the entire piece before trying the recipe.