Monthly Archive: October 2015

Oct 31 2015

We’re Back

It took longer than expected. Steeper learning curve and we are still learning. We are still working out the technical kinks and the tech folks at GoDaddy have been great. All the old stuff is still here, as are your user names. You will have to request for a new password when you log in. …

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Oct 31 2015

Six In The Morning Saturday October 31

Russian airliner crashes in central Sinai – Egyptian PM A Russian airliner has crashed in central Sinai with more than 200 people on board, the office of Egypt’s prime minister has confirmed. The Airbus A-321 had just taken off from the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, on its way to the Russian city of …

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Oct 13 2015

On This Day In History October 13

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.

October 13 is the 286th day of the year (287th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 79 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day on 1792, the cornerstone for the White House in laid in Washington, DC.

In 1800, President John Adams became the first president to reside in the executive mansion, which soon became known as the “White House” because its white-gray Virginia freestone contrasted strikingly with the red brick of nearby buildings.

Architectural competition

The President’s house was a major feature of Pierre (Peter) Charles L’Enfant’s’s plan for the newly established federal city, Washington, D.C. The architect of the White House was chosen in a design competition, which received nine proposals, including one submitted anonymously by Thomas Jefferson. The nation’s first president, George Washington, traveled to the site of the federal city on July 16, 1792, to make his judgment. His review is recorded as being brief, and he quickly selected the submission of James Hoban, an Irishman living in Charleston, South Carolina. Washington was not entirely pleased with the original Hoban submission, however; he found it too small, lacking ornament, and not fitting the nation’s president. On Washington’s recommendation, the house was enlarged by thirty percent; the present East Room, likely inspired by the large reception room at Mount Vernon, was added.

Construction

Construction of the White House began with the laying of the cornerstone on October 13, 1792, although there was no formal ceremony. The main residence, as well as foundations of the house, were built largely by enslaved and free African-American laborers, as well as employed Europeans. Much of the other work on the house was performed by immigrants, many not yet with citizenship. The sandstone walls were erected by Scottish immigrants, employed by Hoban, as were the high relief rose and garland decorations above the north entrance and the “fish scale” pattern beneath the pediments of the window hoods. The initial construction took place over a period of eight years, at a reported cost of $232,371.83 ($2.8 million in 2007 dollars). Although not yet completed, the White House was ready for occupancy on or circa November 1, 1800.

Shortages, including material and labor, forced alterations to the earlier plan developed by French engineer Pierre Charles L’Enfant for a “palace” that was five times larger than the house that was eventually built.] The finished structure contained only two main floors instead of the planned three, and a less costly brick served as a lining for the stone facades. When construction was finished the porous sandstone walls were coated with a mixture of lime, rice glue, casein, and lead, giving the house its familiar color and name.

As it is a famed structure in America, many replicas of the White House have been constructed.

Oct 13 2015

The Daily Late Nightly Show (See You Next Week I Hope)

We are undergoing a change in Platforms from Soapblox to Wordpress on Thursday (the 15th) this week, the details of which are occupying much of my time.

After tonight The Daily Late Nightly Show will not be posted again until next Monday (the 19th) at the earliest.

Here are your guests-

Trevor Noah

Stephen Colbert

In planning the rest of the week (because it’s not like we don’t have weekly and daily story meetings, we’re very professional like that) it’s become quite clear that Thursday the 15th, Transition Day, is going to be fraught.  We expect that the Wordpress sites will be open for reading, including our back catalog, with little delay (there will probably be some).

There is virtually a 100% chance that there will be NO POSTING AT ALL on Thursday.  We will simply be too busy.  If you visit you are likely to get an Internet error.  THIS DOES NOT MEAN WE HAVE CEASED PUBLICATION.

After tomorrow we will stop Baseball Playoff coverage until functionality is restored sufficiently to do so.

We will have an Open Thread Tuesday for the Democratic Debate.

After that all regular publication will stop except for Meta announcements on progress.

We hope to resume posting, at least ours, by Friday.

That’s the best case scenario.  In the worst case it may take us up to a week.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

Oct 13 2015

Senior League Division Series: Dodgers @ Mets Game 3

Saturday’s Game

Top 2nd Leadoff Solo Shot.  Mets 1 – 0.  Solo Shot.  Mets 2 – 0.

Bottom 4th Ground Rule Double.  RBI Double.  Mets 2 – 1.

Bottom 7th.  Raul Tejada criminally assaulted by Chase Utley.  Dodgers 5 – 2.

Series Tied at 1.

Analysis and Setup

People who know me say I’m the quiet type, keep to myself.  I like to think I’m very reasonable and non- confrontational.

Were I Manager, here’s how it goes down.

On Chase Utley’s very first at bat I take my Starter and send him to the field to play a position.  It doesn’t matter which one.  I bring in my hardest throwing, most disposable Reliever and when I make the call to the Bullpen I say-

“You have one pitch.  Be sure it’s a good one.”

Of course we’re both ejected.  Probably suspended and fined.  My Bench Coach takes over, brings back the Starter, game continues.

The next time Chase Utley’s at bat, my Bench Coach puts the Starter in the field.  The Umpires probably eject him right then.

Doesn’t matter.  Is Major League Baseball going to take over Managing one of the teams?  I think that’s a game they don’t want to play.  Is this the WWE where Vince calls the shots?

If Utley isn’t benched for his own safety by the time his spot rolls around the 3rd time, when one of my Bat Boys (there are about 12 or 15 Coaches of various sorts I’ll run through first, but my purpose is firm) sends the Reliever to the field, what will they do then?

And afterward, at what will no doubt be an exciting and well reported News Conference, this is what I will say-

This is perfectly good, old school, hard play.”

Well, I wasn’t going to the Hall anyway.  I’ll find a College someplace.  Maybe a Radio or TV gig.

But ek!  The entire Coaching Staff is fired or under suspension!

We have Minor Leagues.  Those guys aren’t doing anything except sitting on their ass watching the game and wishing they were me anyway.  Voila!  Fully staffed.

Forfeit the game?  Forfeit the Divisional Series?  Do you think Major League Baseball is willing to go down in History (because Baseball is all about History) putting their thumb on the scale that much?

This is bigger than the Black Sox and the Media (at least the New York part of it) is going to sympathize with  me even if they don’t say so and they’re much more efficient (if no less corrupt) than they were in 1919.  Baseball will take years to recover, if it ever does.

If the Series continues and Chase Utley comes to the plate it is deja vu all over again.  He will slink away bruised, battered, and humiliated.

And so shall he ride the bench a coward in every game against the Mets until he retires.

But what if you just lose?

With this much smoke it won’t be a ‘just lose’, it will be a rallying cry, a cause, a legend.  It will put butts in the seats for years.  These guys have shown that they’re good enough to make it back next year, the Minors are full of talent (not quite as good as the Cards but who is?) and there’s enough money to re-sign the wheat and replace the chaff.  The Mets will do fine in 2016 and if they don’t…

Well, we’re used to that.

And should we win there’s this magical thing where you can change your roster with each new Series in the Playoffs.  They can’t fire everybody unless they’re willing to seize control of the Ball Club WHICH is it’s own company.

If they do that then maybe we should be looking at that ‘Anti-Trust Exemption’.

The Mets will be putting Matt Harvey (R, 13 – 8, 2.71 ERA) on the mound.  Brett Anderson (L, 10 – 9, 3.69 ERA) will start for the Dodgers.  If certain unfortunate things had not occurred I might be talking more about Harvey’s contract, but it seems kind of pointless at the moment.

Oct 13 2015

Senior League Division Series: Cardinals @ Cubs Game 3

Sunday’s game

Bottom 1st Solo Shot.  Cardinals 1 – 0.

Top 2nd Leadoff Single.  Fielder’s Choice, Error, Runner on Second, Steal, Runner on Third.  Walk.  Attempted Sacrifice, Error, Score, Runners at Second and Third, 1 Out.  Tied at 1.  RBI Sacrifice.  Cubs 2 – 1.  RBI Infield Single.  Cubs 3 – 1.  2 RBI HR.  Cubs 5 – 1.

Top 3rd Leadoff Walk.  Single, Runners at Corners. RBI Sacrifice.  Cubs 6 – 1.

Bottom 5th Solo Shot.  Cubs 6 – 2.  Solo Shot.  Cubs 6 – 3.  Final.

Series Tied at 1.

Analysis and Setup

Tah Dah.  They did what I told them and look at how it worked out.  Welcome to Wrigley Field (don’t lose the ball in the ivy), one of the storied parks in all of Baseball, where the Cubs (99 – 66) can close it out and the Cardinals (101 – 63) must at least split on the road to survive.

The Cubs will be sending Jake Arrieta (R, 22 – 6, 1.77 ERA) out. The Cardinals will respond with Michael Wacha (R, 17 – 7, 3.38 ERA).  Arrieta is the real deal, very impressive.  We’ll see if he has a rubber arm tonight.  If so he could be very dangerous in a longer Series, appearing in as many as 3 games of 7.  On paper this is the Cubs game.

Game time is 6 on TBS.

Oct 12 2015

Junior League Division Series: Blue Jays @ Rangers Game 4

Sunday’s Game

Top 3rd Leadoff Double.  Infield Single, Runners at Corners.  RBI Double Play.  Blue Jays 1 – 0.

Top 4th Leadoff Double.  Sacrifice. Intentional Walk. Walk, Bases Loaded.  RBI Walk.  Blue Jays 2 – 0.  Double Play.

Top 6th Leadoff Infield Single.  Single, Runners at Corners.  Walk, Bases Loaded.  Double Play, Runners on Second and Third.  3 RBI HR.  Blue Jays 5 – 0.

Bottom 7th Single.  Single, Error, Runners at Second and Third.  RBI Sacrifice.  Blue Jays 4 – 1.  Final

Rangers lead Series 2 – 1.

Analysis and Setup

Still win or Spring Training for the Blue Jays (94 – 71).  The Rangers (90 – 75) will want to close out at home.

Derek Holland (L, 4 – 3, 4.91 ERA) will be on the mound for the Rangers.  The Blue Jays will be starting R.A. Dickey (R, 11 – 11, 3.91 ERA).  Holland missed 4 months with a shoulder tear, Dickey used to play for the Rangers (where he was terrible).  I don’t much like the Rangers, a Blue Jay win after an 0 – 2 start would be counter-intuitive.

Game time is 4 on Fox Sports 1.

Oct 12 2015

Junior League Division Series: Royals @ Astros Game 4

Today’s Meta (because what good is a day without Meta?).  As I mentioned yesterday both TMC and I are in meetings all day long.  We were able to resolve some of our issues yesterday (we think, that’s what today’s meeting is about) which is good.

In planning the rest of the week (because it’s not like we don’t have weekly and daily story meetings, we’re very professional like that) it’s become quite clear that Thursday the 15th, Transition Day, is going to be fraught.  We expect that the Wordpress sites will be open for reading including our back catalog with little delay (there will probably be some).

We’ve decided that the best way to communicate with our readers is through our normal twitter activities.  Information that can’t be expressed in 140 characters we will post at Corrente which is run by our friend Lambert.

There is virtually a 100% chance that there will be NO POSTING AT ALL on Thursday.  We will simply be too busy.  If you visit you are likely to get an Internet error.  THIS DOES NOT MEAN WE HAVE CEASED PUBLICATION.

We hope to resume posting, at least ours, by Friday.  User posts may take a little longer to resolve.

User accounts WILL BE RESTORED, at least for posting.  Commenting may take longer and there’s a possibility that the initial commenting system will not represent a permanent solution.

That’s the best case scenario.  In the worst case it may take us up to a week.

Sorry for the inconvienience.

After tonight The Daily Late Nightly Show will not be posted again until next Monday (the 19th) at the earliest.

After tomorrow we will stop Baseball Playoff coverage until functionality is restored sufficiently to do so.

We will have an Open Thread Tuesday for the Democratic Debate.

After that all regular publication will stop except for Meta announcements on progress.

I want to apologize once again to our Readers, Authors, and Commenters.  We like Soapblox and are not leaving the Platform willingly, it’s just that our vendor will no longer support it.

Baseball-

There will be no live blogging of today’s games (except the Mets, c’mon).

Sunday’s Game

Top 4th Solo Shot.  Royals 1 – 0.

Bottom 5th Walk.  Double.  2 RBI Single.  Astros 2 – 1.

Bottom 6th Leadoff Double.  Sacrifice.  Walk, Runners at Corners.  RBI Single.  Astros 3 – 1.

Bottom 7th Leadoff Solo Shot.  Astros 4 – 1.

Top 9th Leadoff Solo Shot.  Astros 4 – 2.  Final.

Astros lead Series 2 – 1.

Analysis and Setup

Game as expected, an Astros (89 – 77) blowout.  The Royals (96 – 69) must win tonight or they will hit the links and wait until next year.

The Astros will send out Lance McCullers (R, 6 – 7, 3.22 ERA) and the Royals Yordano Ventura (R, 13 – 8, 4.08 ERA).  The New York Times thinks McCullers is almost as good as Keuchel though te numbers don’t agree.  Ventura is the pitcher who got rocked in Game 2 and had to leave after 2 Innings, supposedly because of a stomach virus.  Royals fans better hope he’s recovered because it’s win or go home.

Game time is 1 on Fox Sports 1.

Oct 12 2015

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

Krugman: The Crazies and the Con Man

How will the chaos that the crazies, I mean the Freedom Caucus, have wrought in the House get resolved? I have no idea. But as this column went to press, practically the whole Republican establishment was pleading with Paul Ryan, the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, to become speaker. He is, everyone says, the only man who can save the day.

What makes Mr. Ryan so special? The answer, basically, is that he’s the best con man they’ve got. His success in hoodwinking the news media and self-proclaimed centrists in general is the basis of his stature within his party. Unfortunately, at least from his point of view, it would be hard to sustain the con game from the speaker’s chair.

New York Times Editorial Board: America’s Aging Voting Machines

In his victory speech after his re-election in 2012, President Obama offered special thanks to those Americans who had stood in long lines to vote – some of whom were still waiting even as he spoke – and then offhandedly added, “by the way, we have to fix that.”

The line got big applause, but now, three years later, much of the country is still far from fixing one major cause of the long lines: outdated voting machines and technologies.

With the 2016 presidential election just a year away, the vast majority of states are still getting by with old machines that are increasingly likely to fail, crash or produce unreliable results. The software in them, mostly from the 1990s, doesn’t have the capabilities or security measures available today.

Berbard Kouchner: The bombardment of a hospital is a too-frequent ‘accident’. It’s also a war crime

In the 1980s, as a field French doctor working in Afghanistan, I wrote several articles and open letters to the Soviet Union president to avoid the destruction of the Médecins Sans Frontières Wardak hospital. Of course, the Russian planes bombarded it as an answer.

Targeting a red cross drawn on the roof of a hospital is an unacceptable, cowardly and sadly too-frequent accident. And in Kunduz, last week, a line has again been crossed.[..]

The world demands answers. Who were they targeting and why? Under which military orders? This deliberate killing is not acceptable. What took place is a violation of basic human rights. It was committed against humanitarian and international law, in complete contradiction of the Geneva conventions.

It’s a war crime.

Leo W. Gerard: TPP: Foie Gras for Corporations; Dead Rats for Workers

Some terms of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the 12-nation trade proposal completed last week, are so repulsive that the New Zealand trade minister who helped negotiate the scheme described accepting them as swallowing dead rats.

Here’s what New Zealand Minister Tim Groser said: “On the hardest core issues, there are some ugly compromises out there. And when we say ugly, we mean ugly from each perspective – it doesn’t mean ‘I’ve got to swallow a dead rat and you’re swallowing foie gras.’ It means both of us are swallowing dead rats on three or four issues to get this deal across the line.”

There’s no reason for the United States to swallow a trade deal filled with rotten rodent terms. Previous so-called free trade deals have killed American factories and hundreds of thousands of family-supporting manufacturing jobs. Based on that terrible experience, American workers know for sure that if the scheme contains any foie gras, it’ll be served on silver platters to corporations while workers are force-fed rats.

Eric Kasum: Columbus Day? True Legacy: Cruelty and Slavery

Once again, it’s time to celebrate Columbus Day. Yet, the stunning truth is: If Christopher Columbus were alive today, he would be put on trial for crimes against humanity. Columbus’ reign of terror, as documented by noted historians, was so bloody, his legacy so unspeakably cruel, that Columbus makes a modern villain like Saddam Hussein look like a pale codfish.

Question: Why do we honor a man who, if he were alive today, would almost certainly be sitting on Death Row awaiting execution?

If you’d like to know the true story about Christopher Columbus, please read on. But I warn you, it’s not for the faint of heart.

Here’s the basics. On the second Monday in October each year, we celebrate Columbus Day (this year, it’s on October 11th). We teach our school kids a cute little song that goes: “In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.” It’s an American tradition, as American as pizza pie. Or is it? Surprisingly, the true story of Christopher Columbus has very little in common with the myth we all learned in school.

Zach Stafford: Respectability politics won’t save the lives of black Americans

In the wake of Michael Brown, many black Americas still secretly believed and clung to the idea that respectability politics, or the idea that if we ‘act right’ we will be just fine, were actually a viable way to stay alive. In the past few years, we have been reminded that being respectable will not save our lives. [..]

The reason why being ‘respectable’ doesn’t work is because no matter how respectable you may be acting, your performance isn’t undoing the very real systematic ways in which our world operates.

Wearing a tie doesn’t rectify the fact that black people are incarcerated at six times that rate of white people. You having the ‘right job’ doesn’t give a black person a job as the community faces an unemployment rate of twice that of white people. And saying #AllLivesMatters doesn’t take the bullet out of the literally countless black bodies shot dead by police officers.

Instead, believing that our lives only matter when we ‘act right’ only fuels the very dangerous ways in which our world operates. It protects the structural racism that no one ever wants to talk about or challenge. And it inevitably makes you believe that your life depends on a well enunciated “yes, sir.”

Oct 12 2015

The Breakfast Club (Music Man)

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we’re not too hungover  we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.

 photo 807561379_e6771a7c8e_zps7668d00e.jpg

This Day in History

Columbus lands in Americas; USS Cole bombed in Yemen; Soviet leader Khrushchev bangs shoe at UN; Blast rips Bali nightclub; Opera’s Luciano Pavarotti born; Singer John Denver dies in plane crash.

Breakfast Tunes

Something to Think about over Coffee Prozac

Learning music by reading about it is like making love by mail.

Luciano Pavarotti

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