Daily Archive: 03/23/2013

Mar 23 2013

What We Now Know

This week on Up with Chris Hayes we learned about the extreme impact climate change on our coastal cities. New research show storm surges like the one from Hurricane Katrina could become ten times more frequent. Host Chris Hayes and his guests Rashid Khalidi, professor of modern Arab studies at Columbia University; Noura Erakat, adjunct professor at Georgetown University; Matt Duss, policy analyst at American Progress; and Ann Lewis, former advisor to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discuss what they have learned this week.

More hurricane surges in the future

by Aslak Grinsted, Nils Bohr Institute

By examining the frequency of extreme storm surges in the past, previous research has shown that there was an increasing tendency for storm hurricane surges when the climate was warmer. But how much worse will it get as temperatures rise in the future? How many extreme storm surges like that from Hurricane Katrina, which hit the U.S. coast in 2005, will there be as a result of global warming? New research from the Niels Bohr Institute show that there will be a tenfold increase in frequency if the climate becomes two degrees Celcius warmer. The results are published in the scientific journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, PNAS.

NFL passes new helmet rule, eliminates ‘Tuck Rule’

by Jim Corbett, USA Today

The most controversial rules change passed at these now-concluded owners meetings will ban players from delivering forcible blows with the crown of the helmet. It was the biggest step aimed at making the game safer, particularly in regards to concussion prevention in these meetings that approved three new rules related to player safety. [..]

Wednesday’s other changes included passing a rule to fix the Thanksgiving Day challenge faux pas when Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz tried to challenge a Justin Forsett 81-yard touchdown run and his challenge negated the official’s ability to review the scoring play. Now a challenge of a play like that will result in a 15-yard penalty with the original play getting reviewed.

The other notable change? The infamous “Tuck Rule” is no more. The New England Patriots abstained from voting, as did Washington Redskins general manager Bruce Allen, who was an Oakland Raiders executive in January 2002 when Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s seeming fumble when his throwing arm came forward was ruled an incompletion. The Patriots went on to win that playoff game and eventually the Super Bowl.

No More Drones for CIA

by Daniel Klaidman, The Daily Beast

At a time when controversy over the Obama administration’s drone program seems to be cresting, the CIA is close to taking a major step toward getting out of the targeted killing business. Three senior U.S. officials tell The Daily Beast that the White House is poised to sign off on a plan to shift the CIA’s lethal targeting program to the Defense Department.

The move could potentially toughen the criteria for drone strikes, strengthen the program’s accountability, and increase transparency. Currently, the government maintains parallel drone programs, one housed in the CIA and the other run by the Department of Defense. The proposed plan would unify the command and control structure of targeted killings and create a uniform set of rules and procedures. The CIA would maintain a role, but the military would have operational control over targeting. Lethal missions would take place under Title 10 of the U.S. Code, which governs military operations, rather than Title 50, which sets out the legal authorities for intelligence activities and covert operations. “This is a big deal,” says one senior administration official who has been briefed on the plan. “It would be a pretty strong statement.”

Mar 23 2013

Random Japan

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Osaka’s last remaining streetcar company introduced a tram line whose color scheme is meant to evoke “traditional Japanese aesthetic philosophy.”

Lawmakers have enacted measures to combat a fraud scheme known as oshigai, which involves bullying unsuspecting people into selling “precious metal jewelry and other items for unreasonably low prices.”

Police in Fukuoka say an employee at a work center for people with mental disabilities put a disabled man in a chair, placed a cardboard target above his head, and “threw an awl from about three meters away like he was playing darts.”

Headline of the Week: “Researchers Find Chemical in Male Mouse Urine that Attracts Females” (via Mainichi Japan)

Mar 23 2013

NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament 2013: Day 1 Early Evening

Time Network Seed Team Record Seed Team Record Region
6:40 ESPN2 (5) Colorado 25-6 (12) Kansas 18-13 South
6:35 ESPN2 (6) Nebraska 23-8 (11) Chattanooga 29-3 South
6:45 ESPN2 (4) Georgia 25-5-1 (13) Montana 24-7 West
6:50 ESPN2 (7) Texas Tech 21-10 (10) South Florida 21-10 West

Mar 23 2013

NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament 2013: Day 5 Evening

Time Network Seed Team Record Seed Team Record Region
5 CBS (1) Louisville 30-5 (8) Colorado State 26-8 Midwest
6 TNT (6) Arizona 26-7 (14) Harvard 20-9 West
7 TBS (4) St. Louis 27-6 (12) Oregon 27-8 Midwest
7:30 CBS (3) Marquette 24-8 (6) Butler 27-8 East
8:30 TNT (1) Gonzaga 32-2 (9) Wichita State 28-8 West
9:30 TBS (4) Syracuse 27-9 (12) California 21-11 East

Mar 23 2013

NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament 2013: Day 1 Late Afternoon

Time Network Seed Team Record Seed Team Record Region
4:05 ESPN2 (3) Texas A&M 24-9 (14) Wichita State 24-9 South
4:10 ESPN2 (4) South Carolina 24-7 (13) South Dakota St. 25-7 South
4:15 ESPN2 (5) Iowa State 23-8 (12) Gonzaga 27-5 West
4:20 ESPN2 (2) California 22-9 (15) Fresno State 24-8 West

Mar 23 2013

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

Beans and Greens: A Power Couple

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    If you’ve been a longtime follower of Recipes for Health, you know how much I like combining beans and greens. They make a good, nourishing couple, and every peasant cuisine in the world seems to know this.

   One of my favorite dishes from the Veracruz region of Mexico is a delicious black bean soup that brings together the beans and a local green that’s related to lamb’s quarters, for which I substituted spinach when I adapted it for Recipes for Health. I love to add greens to hearty minestrones and kale to slow-baked beans. One of my favorite dishes from the Southern Italian region of Apulia is bitter greens with dried favas, and I love a simple mussel or clam stew with beans and greens. You’ll find pomegranate molasses, lots of slowly browned onions and a garden of fresh herbs – mint, dill, cilantro – in several of this week’s recipes.

~Martha Rose Shulman~

Bean and Green Herb Stew

This dish is inspired by a famous Persian stew that is traditionally made with chicken and kidney beans.

White or Pink Beans With Beet Greens and Parmesan

A great way to use up your Parmesan rinds.

Baked Beans With Pomegranate Molasses, Walnuts and Chard

This Iranian-inspired rendition of baked beans is sweetened with pomegranate molasses, which you can find in Middle Eastern markets.

Black-Eyed Pea Soup or Stew With Pomegranate and Chard

A hearty Persian-inspired dish that can be a soup or a stew.

Large White Bean, Tuna and Spinach Salad

A substantial salad that is good any time of year.

Mar 23 2013

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

Eugene Robinson: Denying Victims a Vote

Shame on Harry Reid for killing any prospect of an assault weapons ban. I understand why he did it, but that doesn’t make it right.

In his State of the Union address, President Obama spoke with fiery eloquence about the cost of gun violence in shattered lives. “They deserve a vote,” the president said of the victims, challenging Congress to take a stand on reasonable legislation to keep deadly weapons out of the hands of killers.

Reid obviously disagrees. The Senate majority leader decided Tuesday to abandon a proposal by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., that would have banned the sale of some military-style firearms-weapons designed not for sport or self-defense, but for killing enemy soldiers in battle. Reid said he was dropping the measure-without a vote-because it would surely fail.

John R. MacArthur: Obama’s Real Political Program

You have to hand it to Barack Obama when it comes to having it both ways: He never stops serving the ruling class, yet the mainstream media, from right to left, continues to pretend that he’s some sort of reincarnation of Franklin D. Roosevelt, fully committed to the downtrodden and deeply hostile to the privileged and the rich.

The president’s double game was never more adroit than during his most recent State of the Union address. Reacting to the speech, the right-wing columnist Charles Krauthammer spoke on Fox News of Obama’s “activist government” beliefs and his penchant for “painting the Republicans as the party of the rich” while portraying himself as the defender of the “middle class, Medicare and all this other stuff.” Meanwhile, the “liberal” New York Times praised his “broad second-term agenda” as “impressive” and blamed the GOP for “standing in the way” of the many liberal reforms that the president supposedly wants to enact to help the poor and the middle class.

Yet the address contained hardly anything progressive: [..]

Glen Ford: From Detroit to Cyprus, Banksters in Search of Prey

From Nicosia, Cyprus, to Detroit, Michigan, the global financial octopus is squeezing the life out of society, stripping away public and individual assets in a vain attempt to fend off its own, inevitable collapse. The bankers “troika” that effectively rules Europe prepares to reach into the individual accounts of ordinary depositors on the island nation of Cyprus to fund the bailout of their local banking brethren. Across the Atlantic, a corporate henchman makes arrangements to seize the assets and abolish the political rights of a Black metropolis. The local colorations may vary, but the crisis is the same: massed capital is devouring its social and natural environment. Either we liquidate the banksters, or Wall Street will liquidate us. [..]

Detroit and the people of Cyprus share the same enemy, a class that is beyond the reach of simple civil rights suits. The Lords of Capital on Wall Street and the City of London and the Federal Reserve in Washington and in the “troika” at Brussels confront their own existential crisis, which compels them to liquidate the public sector so that it can eventually be transferred to their own balance sheets. There are many ways to accomplish this, through privatization of existing public institutions, or by simply blowing a hole in public services and allowing privateers to fill the void, subsidized by public funds. However, nothing can save the banksters from inevitable, and increasingly imminent, collapse. Ever-increasing profit margins must be achieved, somehow, or the system implodes. Hundreds of trillions of notional dollars in derivatives must be serviced and fed by a class that makes nothing and can only survive by chicanery and coercion by governments under their control.

Rep. Keith Ellison and Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva: Ryan Blueprint Would Wipe Out Decades of Progress

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and other Republican Party leaders have staked their party’s future on a false premise. They say the wealthy are already providing for everyone else, and middle class families need to sacrifice for a change while millionaires reap the benefits.

This year’s Ryan budget is a product of this assumption. It treats the government to which Rep. Ryan has been elected as something between a nuisance and a menace, with no role in helping the economy except to transfer more wealth upward.

Plenty of people have pointed out that these ideas lost in November. What they often forget is that a more positive vision also won that election: a vision of an America that helps us all achieve more than we could individually, a government that acts when the moment calls for it.

Thomas Hedges: Reports of My WMD Are Greatly Exaggerated

Ten years after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the American war machine might be revving up for another strike, this time in Syria. The push has accelerated in the last few days after rebels and government forces accused each other of using chemical weapons in a rocket attack Tuesday outside of Aleppo, though reports now suggest such weapons were not fired.

Republicans, latching on to President Obama’s assertion that government use of chemical weapons would be a “game changer,” are trying to convince the public that the allegations about President Bashar Assad’s stockpiling of and willingness to use such weapons are true, despite the lack of evidence. GOP Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, along with Michigan Rep. Mike Rogers, have all been pressing for the use of force in Syria for more than a year. Recently, they have used the prospect of chemical warfare in an effort to shape public opinion.

Joe Nocera: Saving Children From Guns

For nearly two months, my assistant, Jennifer Mascia, and I have been publishing a daily blog in which we aggregate articles about shootings from the previous day. Of all the stories we link to, the ones I find hardest to read are those about young children who accidentally shoot themselves or another child. They just break my heart. Yet Jennifer and I find new examples almost every day.

Partly, I react by thinking, “How can anyone be so stupid as to leave a loaded gun within reach of a small child?” But I also have another reaction. In 1970, Congress passed a law that resulted in childproofing medicine bottles. The Consumer Product Safety Commission regulates the paint used in children’s toys. State laws mandate that young children be required to use car seats.

So why can’t we childproof guns?

Mar 23 2013

NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament 2013: Day 1 Early Afternoon

Time Network Seed Team Record Seed Team Record Region
1:35 ESPN2 (1) Connecticut 29-4 (16) Idaho 17-15 East
1:40 ESPN2 (3) UCLA 25-7 (14) Stetson 24-8 Midwest
1:45 ESPN2 (5) Michigan State 24-8 (12) Marist 26-6 East
1:50 ESPN2 (2) Tennessee 24-7 (15) Oral Roberts 18-12 Midwest

Mar 23 2013

NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament 2013: Day 5 Afternoon

Time Network Seed Team Record Seed Team Record Region
noon CBS (4) Michigan 27-7 (5) VCU 27-8 South
2:30 CBS (3) Michigan State 26-8 (6) Memphis 31-4 Midwest

Mar 23 2013

On This Day In History March 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.

March 23 is the 82nd day of the year (83rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 283 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1775, Patrick Henry voices American opposition to British policy

During a speech before the second Virginia Convention, Patrick Henry responds to the increasingly oppressive British rule over the American colonies by declaring, “I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” Following the signing of the American Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, Patrick Henry was appointed governor of Virginia by the Continental Congress.

Patrick Henry (May 29, 1736 – June 6, 1799) was an orator and politician who led the movement for independence in Virginia in the 1770s. A Founding Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial Governor of Virginia from 1776 to 1779 and subsequently, from 1784 to 1786. Henry led the opposition to the Stamp Act of 1765 and is well remembered for his “Give me Liberty, or give me Death!” speech. Along with Samuel Adams and Thomas Paine, he is remembered as one of the most influential exponents of Republicanism, promoters of the American Revolution and Independence, especially in his denunciations of corruption in government officials and his defense of historic rights. After the Revolution, Henry was a leader of the anti-federalists in Virginia who opposed the United States Constitution, fearing that it endangered the rights of the States, as well as the freedoms of individuals.

American Revolution

Responding to pleas from Massachusetts that the colonies create committees of correspondence to coordinate their reaction to the British, Henry took the lead in Virginia. In March 1773, along with Thomas Jefferson and Richard Henry Lee, Henry led the Virginia House of Burgesses to adopt resolutions providing for a standing committee of correspondents. Each colony set up such committees, and they led to the formation of the First Continental Congress in 1774, to which Henry was elected.

Patrick Henry is best known for the speech he made in the House of Burgesses on March 23, 1775, in Saint John’s Church in Richmond, Virginia. The House was undecided on whether to mobilize for military action against the encroaching British military force, and Henry argued in favor of mobilization. Forty-two years later, Henry’s first biographer, William Wirt, working from oral testimony, attempted to reconstruct what Henry said. According to Wirt, Henry ended his speech with words that have since become immortalized:

“Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, Give me Liberty, or give me Death!”

The crowd, by Wirt’s account, jumped up and shouted “To Arms! To Arms!”. For 160 years Wirt’s account was taken at face value, but in the 1970s historians began to question the authenticity of Wirt’s reconstruction.[8] Historians today observe that Henry was known to have used fear of Indian and slave revolts in promoting military action against the British, and that according to the only written first-hand account of the speech, Henry used some graphic name-calling that failed to appear in Wirt’s heroic rendition.

In August 1775, Henry became colonel of the 1st Virginia Regiment. At the outset of the Revolutionary War, Henry led militia against Royal Governor Lord Dunmore in defense of some disputed gunpowder, an event known as the Gunpowder Incident. During the war he served as the first post-colonial Governor of Virginia and presided over several expeditions against the Cherokee Indians, who were allied with the British.

Henry lived during part of the War at his 10,000-acre Leatherwood Plantation in Henry County, Virginia, where he, his first cousin Ann Winston Carr and her husband Col. George Waller had settled. During the five years Henry lived at Leatherwood, from 1779 to 1784, he owned 75 slaves, and grew tobacco. During this time, he kept in close touch with his friend the explorer Joseph Martin, whom Henry had appointed agent to the Cherokee nation, and with whom Henry sometimes invested in real estate, and for whom the county seat of Henry County was later named.

In early November 1775 Henry and James Madison were elected founding trustees of Hampden-Sydney College, which opened for classes on November 10. He remained a trustee until his death in 1799. Henry was instrumental in achieving passage of the College’s Charter of 1783, an action delayed because of the war. He is probably the author of the Oath of Loyalty to the new Republic included in that charter. Seven of his sons attended the new college.

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