09/23/2012 archive

Rant of the Week: Glen Ford and Michael Eric Dyson

Black Agenda Report‘s executive editor, Glen Ford and Michael Eric Dyson, professor of sociology at Georgetown University and radio host debated the presidency of Barack Obama on Democracy Now! with host Amy Goodman.

“Effective Evil” or Progressives’ Best Hope?

Transcript can be read here.

On This Day In History September 23

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 23 is the 266th day of the year (267th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 99 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1964, the Paris Opera, Palais Garnier, unveils a stunning new ceiling painted as a gift by Belorussian-born artist Marc Chagall, who spent much of his life in France. The ceiling was typical of Chagall’s masterpieces–childlike in its apparent simplicity yet luminous with color and evocative of the world of dreams and the subconscious. . . .

. . . . Andre Malraux, the French minister of culture, commissioned him to design a new ceiling for the Paris Opera after seeing Chagall’s work in Daphnis et Chloe. Working with a surface of 560 square meters, Chagall divided the ceiling into color zones that he filled with landscapes and figures representing the luminaries of opera and ballet. The ceiling was unveiled on September 23, 1964, during a performance of the same Daphnis et Chloe. As usual, a few detractors condemned Chagall’s work as overly primitive, but this criticism was drowned out in the general acclaim for the work. In 1966, as a gift to the city that had sheltered him during World War II, he painted two vast murals for New York’s Metropolitan Opera House (1966).

In 1977, France honored Chagall with a retrospective exhibition at the Louvre in Paris. He continued to work vigorously until his death in 1985 at the age of 97.

The unveiling of the ceiling coincided with the publication of The Phantom of the Opera (“Le Fantôme de l’Opéra”) by Gaston Leroux.

It was first published as a serialization in “Le Gaulois” from September 23, 1909 to January 8, 1910. Initially, the story sold very poorly upon publication in book form and was even out of print several times during the twentieth century, despite the success of its various film and stage adaptations. The most notable of these were the 1925 film depiction and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1986 musical. The Phantom of the Opera musical is now the longest running Broadway show in history, and one of the most lucrative entertainment enterprises of all time.

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: Chris’ Sunday guests were not yet listed at the time this was posted.

This Week with George Stephanopolis: George Stephanopoulos‘ guests on “This Week” are Obama campaign senior adviser David Axelrod and Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus.

The roundtable will debate all the week’s politics, with Republican strategist and ABC News political analyst and contributor Nicolle Wallace; former Obama domestic policy adviser Melody Barnes; conservative commentator Ann Coulter, author of the new book “Mugged“; Univision anchor Jorge Ramos; and University of California, Berkeley professor and former Clinton Labor Secretary Robert Reich.  

No George Will?

Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer:  This Sunday Mr. Schieffer sits down for an exclusive interview with former President Bill Clinton.

His roundtable guests Mother JonesDavid Corn, who uncovered the “47 percent” video, The Wall Street Journal‘s Peggy Noonan, TIME Managing Editor Rick Stengel, former Clinton adviser and professor at Harvard University David Gergen and CBS News Political Director John Dickerson look at news from the campaign trail and offer their take on where things stand in Campaign 2012.

The Chris Matthews Show: This week’s guests Helene Cooper, The New York Times White House Correspondent; David Ignatius, The Washington Post Columnist; Major Garrett, National Journal Congressional Correspondent; and Katty Kay, BBC Washington Correspondent.

Meet the Press with David Gregory: MTP guests are Obama backer Gov. Deval Patrick (D-MA) and key Romney supporter Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH).

MSNBC’s political analyst and White House correspondent, Chuck Todd breaks down the latest polls.

The roundtable guests are Mayor of Atlanta Kasim Reed, senior Romney adviser Bay Buchanan, host of “Morning Joe” Joe Scarborough, David Brooks of the New York Times, and Democratic strategist Dee Dee Myers.

State of the Union with Candy Crowley: Ms. Crowley’s guests are Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC);  House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers (R); pollsters Whit Ayres; Anna Greenberg; Susan Page of USA Today; and CNN Senior Political Analyst Ron Brownstein.

F1 2012: Marina Bay

During the boring parts today you can expect to hear lots of commentary about driver changes.  I’ve never been much of a believer in the ‘great man’ theory of history and I think most drivers with a Super License can be said to be reasonably competent while but a bare handful have any positive impact over and above the hardware they pilot and the management teams that support them.

There really is only one Alonso and he’s a perfect fit in Maranello where they can’t be bothered to produce a quick car because they’re so busy polishing their turds (Mythbusters have proven you can actually do this).

Hamilton is a good example of the other kind of driver, fearless and skilled, able to make fast hardware fast and not so fast hardware work at all, constantly thwarted and frustrated by decisions over which they have little control.

There has been a lot of talk about Hamilton changing teams that I’ve felt has been totally misguided.  Where would he go?  There are only 3 teams besides McLaren in the last 14 years that have produced a champion.

Scuderia Marlboro UPC might be interested in a Massa upgrade, but not necessarily in Hamilton.  Alonso doesn’t care much who he races with as long as they stay in the mirror which Hamilton would not.  Without Alonso, Maranello would have a tough time getting to Q3.  Why would Hamilton trade down hardware and put himself in an impossible situation?

Red Bull stands pat.  Why wouldn’t they?  Management and hardware is usually superior (not so much this year) and Vettel and Webber are good enough to win.

That leaves Lotus (Renault).  If Hamilton moves Grosjean is in his seat.

But it’s all mere speculation, Hamilton signed a 1 year extension yesterday.  Sinagapore also signed a 5 year extension of their race contract for a little more than $25 million a year.  While Bernie is being coy there is no doubt it’s a substantial discount compared to the $40 million charged Bahrain for the privilege.

And it has nothing at all to do with listing the now indefinitely postponed IPO on the Singapore exchange.  Nothing.

What about this race?

Twisty, bumpy, narrow, hard to pass… breakdowns, crashes, and tires otherwise they finish the way they start.  Fortunately for the entertainment value these are all likely to factor.  de la Rosa has already taken a gearbox penalty (to no effect since he was starting last anyway).  Vettel is complaining (with many others) about the curbing in the Turn 10 chicane launching cars and close wall encounters have been common.  Mercedes is taking a gamble with Softs (the harder of the 2 compounds this week) at the start instead of the 1 second a lap faster Super Softs.

Odds are it will be a soporific dronefest though not nearly as much as the Sunday Talking Heads.  It is the potential for excitement, change, and news that make it superior.

Pretty tables below.

Six In The Morning

On Sunday

Anti-Islam film: Pakistan minister’s bounty condemned

The Pakistani PM’s spokesman has condemned a minister’s $100,000 (£61,600) reward for the killing of the maker of an amateur anti-Islam video.

The BBC  23 September 2012

Shafqat Jalil told the BBC the government “absolutely disassociated” itself from comments by Railways Minister Ghulam Ahmad Bilour.

The film, produced in the US, has led to a wave of protests in the Muslim world and many deaths.

The bounty offer came a day after at least 20 died in clashes in Pakistan.

Friday’s violence, which saw protesters pitted against armed police, occurred in cities throughout Pakistan, with Karachi and Peshawar among the worst hit.

“I will pay whoever kills the makers of this video $100,000,” the minister said. “If someone else makes other similar blasphemous material in the future, I will also pay his killers $100,000.

Sunday’s Headlines:

Now in power, rifts emerge within Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood

Viva Macau: What does the future hold for China’s gambling capital?

Belarus elects new parliament amid opposition boycott

People power drums Libya’s jihadists out of Benghazi

Ex-Guatemalan Army commander accused in massacre faces charges in U.S

What We Now Know

This week marks the first anniversary of MSNBC’s Up with Chris Hayes (@upwithchris), the two hour discussion program that airs at 8 AM on Saturdays and Sundays. It has been a refreshing addition to the standard fare news talk programs, providing interesting guests from the news, news media and blogosphere. you can follow the conversation and add your own comments by following the hashtag #Uppers on Twitter, on Facebook and now at Up with Chris.Tumblr.com:

Today on Up w/ Chris Hayes we celebrated our one-year anniversary. Our first year on the air has been defined by a sense of self-discovery and experimentation, a determination to innovate, to push forward the boundaries of what our show can be. We’ve journeyed from a conference room in 30 Rockefeller Plaza to Inequalistan to Occupy Wall Street, tinkering and improving at every step of the way. And you, our online audience, have been an integral part of that process, making Up w/ Chris very much a communal enterprise.

In the spirit of that innovation, today we’re launching a Tumblr. For as much as you see on the air, there is so much more that goes into producing Up w/ Chris every week. We have a rigorous, thoughtful, creative editorial process, and we’re hoping this platform will be an expression of that. We’ll be posting considerably more of all those revealing production elements you see each week on the show: charts, graphs, photos, videos, thoughts from our producers, and more. We hope it will be evocative of the UP sensibility – weekend mornings, all week long.

We also want this to be as much of an interactive experience as possible. On Tumblr you can reply, reblog, ask us questions and more. Is there an especially knotty political issue you think UP can elucidate with a handy chart or graph? A myth we can debunk with a quick review of the empirical evidence? Some historical perspective we can provide? Let us know.

When we first launched our Twitter account – and when Wyeth Ruthven, the original #upper – created the #uppers hash tag, there were just eleven mentions. Today, our record is above 7,000. We hope to see the same growth and enthusiasm here. Welcome!

Sal Gentile, segment & digital producer, Up w/ Chris Hayes.

Host Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) discusses what we know now with guests John Nichols, Washington correspondent for The Nation and associate editor of Wisconsin’s Capital Times; L. Joy Williams, (@ljoywilliams) political strategist and founder LJW Political Stategies, co-host of radio show “This Week in Blackness.”; Ana Marie Cox, (@anamariecox) columnist for The Guardian and founder of the political blog Wonkette; and Kevin Williamson, deputy managing editor of The National Review.

Teachers End Chicago Strike on Second Try

by Monica Davey and Steve Yaccino

CHICAGO – The Chicago Teachers Union agreed on Tuesday to end its strike in the nation’s third-largest school system, allowing 350,000 children to return to classes on Wednesday and bringing to a close, at least for now, a tense standoff over issues like teacher evaluations and job security that had upended this city for more than a week.

In a private meeting on Tuesday afternoon, 800 union delegates voted overwhelmingly to suspend the strike after classes had been halted for seven school days, which left parents at loose ends and City Hall taking legal action. The delegates, who had chosen on Sunday to extend their strike rather than accept a deal reached by negotiators for the union and the Chicago Public Schools, this time decided to abandon their picket lines.

Karen Lewis, the union president, described the voice vote as 98 percent to 2 percent in favor and a sign that the deal was seen as good, though hardly perfect.

Village relocated due to climate change

by Brook Meakins

With sea levels rising, the villagers of Vunidogoloa in Fiji have been forced to move to higher lands

For the most part, many people still experience climate change on an academic rather than a personal level. But for the villagers of Vunidogoloa on Vanua Levu, Fiji’s second largest island, climate change has become a daily intrusion on every day life. The villagers of Vunidogoloa are currently relocating to drier and higher land because of sea level rise, erosion, and intensifying floods. I had the opportunity to visit the village midway through this process – one of the very first village relocation projects in the world – and spoke with people young and old about their upcoming move.