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Greenlee Gazette is away at a family event. Some blogging may happen, but not much! See you next week!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

President Obama Announces Debt Ceiling Deal

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Debt Ceiling Deal Reached

Image from source, ABC News
Thank goodness. Now there will be several days of post-mortem on this thing (assuming something doesn't derail it), and then we can hopefully drop the whole issue for a while. I'm sick of it, you're sick of it, let's just be done with it.

[Excerpt]


Obama, Congress Reach a Debt Deal

Racing the clock to avoid a government default, President Barack Obama and Republican congressional leaders reached historic agreement Sunday night on a compromise to permit vital U.S. borrowing by the Treasury in exchange for more than $2 trillion in long-term spending cuts. . . 


Read more at: ABC News

Friday, July 29, 2011

Boehner Bill Passes, Will Go Soft in Senate

Image from Dickipedia
Heh. Boehner Bill. Anyway, this thing would be a disaster if it passed the Senate. But Harry Reid and President Obama both promise it will not pass. Which, even though the debt ceiling deadline looms, is actually a good thing. Next (after the Senate votes this one down) will be Harry Reid's bill, which will require a super majority (and that might be tricky). Stupid Senate and their stupid filibuster that they could have neutered but didn't.  But isn't this fun?

By the way, the addition of a "balanced budget amendment" is epically stupid, not to mention impossible. Constitutional amendments aren't crammed through in 11th-hour bills, they take years. Stupid.

[Excerpt]

House Passes Boehner Debt Bill

U.S. House Speaker John Boehner brought a revised bill to raise the debt ceiling, cut spending and call for a balanced-budget amendment to House floor for a vote Friday evening. . .

Read more at: MSNBC

Congressional Panel Approves Tracking Our Internet History

Hey, if we can't trust Chris Hansen, why
would we trust the government?
Image from source, Raw Story
Are you paranoid? Do you always feel like somebody's watching you? Well, the government is going to make you less paranoid by confirming it! A bipartisan panel has approved a bill that will force broadband providers to track your every move for a year! This tragically misguided bill is aimed at stopping online pedophiles. It might do that, but it does much more than that. This is Big Brother at his worst (best?).

After all of the anti-gay and anti-abortion activity by Republicans, I expect this sort of thing from them. But Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is a cosponsor of this monstrosity. And that is very disappointing.

[Excerpt]



House panel approves bill forcing ISPs to log users’ web history


The House Judiciary Committee approved legislation on Thursday that would require Internet service providers (ISPs) to collect and retain records about Internet users' activity. . .

Read more at: Raw Story

Bachmann Disproves GOP's "Obama's Blank Check" Line

"Whoops!"
A couple of weeks ago, I commented in this space about Karl Rove's CrossroadsGPS "Obama's Blank Check" attack ads. The bit about a blank check has been used in politics forever, but of all the charges against Obama, it's kind of a weird one. And since those ads started running, we've been hearing the line from (of course) FOX "News" and right-wing talk radio. Worse, John Boner Boehner used it in his tragically lame, fact-free "rebuttal" to President Obama's address the other night. And now, Mitch McConnell.

Along with the blank check charge, is the "Obama's spending binge" line. What? When? The stimulus? The one most economists agree worked, but would have been much better if it was bigger? WTF are they talking about? Well, I can only say it's a nice bit of kismet that Michele Bachmann herself has disproved the entire notion!

[Excerpt]


Whoops! Michele Bachmann inadvertently proves key GOP talking point false

. . .Of course, if Congress ultimately determines spending — which of course it does — there’s no way raising the debt ceiling would constitute giving President Obama a “blank check,” as John Boehner and other Republicans keep falsely insisting. . .

Read more at: The Plum Line

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Daily Show: Norway Terrorist & FOX "News"

Jon Stewart, as always, is one of the most vocal and best critics of FOX "News." Because not only is he correct, he's extremely funny while proving it. This post requires two clips, since it zooms from the Norwegian terrorist, the media's coverage of it, FOX's objection to the media's coverage, and then the sky-high hypocrisy of FOX (particularly the doltish Sean Hannity) as it pertains to how they characterize "the other side." Brilliant and hilarious, as usual.


Christine O'Donnell: Still Not a Witch, Going After CREW

FOX "News"--as was completely expected--trotted out 2010 laughing stock, Christine O'Donnell on Wednesday. She's got a book to sell, so hopefully she'll go away soon. But don't be surprised to see FOX turn her into the latest political celebrity. And if they do, they've got their audience already prepared to defend her every statement, and claim that the lame stream media is baselessly attacking her.

It's quite a built-in defense. Anything that [insert pretty, but batshit crazy, female political celebrity name here] says or does--no matter how off the charts loony--will be "out of context" or an "ad hominem attack." Every jab at her counter intuitively making her stronger. Oh, but we're getting ahead of ourselves. For now, O'Donnell is just attacking the organization that attacked her. Baselessly, I'm sure.


[Excerpt]

O’Donnell Wants IRS to Revoke CREW’s Tax-Exempt Status

Tea Party favorite Christine O'Donnell, who came up short in a high-profile U.S. Senate race in Delaware last year, is asking the IRS to revoke the tax-exempt status of a government watchdog group that filed a complaint against her last fall, saying the group was just trying to injure her reputation using government resources. . .


Read more, with video, at (where else): FOX "News"

John McCain Has Lucid Moment: Tea Party is Bizarro

Oh, Grampy. You rarely make sense anymore, but when the synapses are firing, they're really firing.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Michele Bachmann's Huge Makeup Receipts

So, Marcus doesn't do the hair and makeup?
Image from source, Mother Jones

A story like this puts me in something of a quandary. Back in the 2008 election primaries, then candidate (and current scoundrel) John Edwards was taken to task by the right wing for a $400 haircut. They even caught him on video, primping his hair, and this became an endless source of amusement for right-wing world. They're very easily entertained.


But when that story was hot, I soooo didn't care. I thought it was stupid. Candidates have to look good, and campaigns are expensive affairs. Who cares what he spent on his hair? So, why should I care about Michele Bachmann's hair and makeup bill? Well, I don't, not really. For one thing she's a woman, and the press and public would be merciless if she didn't look her best. Of course, her mantra of austerity, and willingness to see the burdens most heavily placed on the lower classes does give her a bit of a Marie Antoinette air. But so what. I already think her morals are suspect. Moralizers usually have the worst morals.

So the big news here, as far as I'm concerned, is that Michele Bachmann has a stylist. A female stylist. So our wishes of her having a gay stylist biding his time to wreck her coif will never be realized.

[Excerpt]

Michele Bachmann's $4,700 Hair and Makeup Bill

Considering Rep. Michele Bachmann's crusade against government spending and her demand that America live within its means, you wouldn't figure her for a conspicuous spender. But after launching her bid for the White House, Bachmann has broken with her usual frugality and shelled out some serious cash on a stylist in what could be seen as her own John-Edwards'-$400-haircut moment. . .

Read more at: Mother Jones

What if They Threw a Tea Party, And Nobody Came?

Jim DeMint Addresses the Masses. Image from source.
I've been saying for some time that the whole tea bagger phenomenon was waning. Like the supposedly forceful "PUMAs" that were going to elect John McCain in 2010, the Tea Party is over. Well, not over exactly. There are stragglers, and every once in a while it seems to get rolling again. But is this really a group that should be capable of holding the nation--the world's--economy for ransom?

This is a group that sprang up immediately after President Obama's inauguration, claiming that they were overtaxed, and that they were only responding to Obama's bad policies. Riiiight. Considering that he didn't really have any policies yet, the claim is rather dubious. The tea party started out loud and boisterous, not very organized, and kind of. . .Wal-Mart-ey? Quickly, political operatives got their tentacles into this amorphous group, and began to direct things from behind the scenes. The party split into factions, some more astro-turfy than others. And no matter what they did, the news media--the allegedly liberal mainstream media--gave them copious attention.



Liberal bloggers like me did it too, of course. The imagery was just to hilarious, the speeches too clueless, the whole spectacle too grody to ignore.  Like a train crash or a Sarah Palin word salad speech, it was like catnip. Meanwhile other protests and gatherings, often much bigger, much less vague than the tea baggers, got scant attention from any quarter.



So, the tea party was magnified in importance, because it was camera ready. And now that all the pizazz has gone out of the party, they're still given too much attention. They always were, but now it's just getting stupid.


Source: Slate



Who Spent the Money: A Debt Ceiling Chart

Just FYI, all of you John Boner Boehner lovers, you Eric Cantor-ites, you Mitch McConnell turtle doves. . .


Found at: The Atlantic

Blast from the Past [Extra]: The Songs of Tony Burrows

What, you haven't heard of Tony Burrows? Well, neither had I. But I got stuck in a Wiki hole this evening, couldn't possibly tell you what started it. But did you know that this one dude had like five hit songs in the 70s, each time for a different group? They weren't much as far as groups go, sort of the Milli Vanillis of their day. But the songs were hits, in some cases huge.

Image from Wikipedia









 If you were born in the sixties or earlier, you remember Love Grows (Where My Rosemary Goes) by Edison Lighthouse, from your AM radio or your baby sitter's 45 record stack. If you're younger, you remember it from the movie, Shallow Hal. Tony sang that. Then there's Gimme Dat Ding from the Pipkins, a song you likely remember from The Benny Hill Show, or--and I may be wrong about this, but I think I'm right--Rowan & Martin's Laugh-in.





Tony was at it again with White Plains' My Baby Loves Lovin', which was a hit in 1970, and was featured on the soundtrack to Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. Those three songs were actually hits--all of them--from February to April of 1970. Also from 1970 was, United We Stand from The Brotherhood of Man.



Then came The First Class' Beach Baby, which is--as far as I know--the last big Tony Burrows song. And truthfully, wouldn't you have put it into the 60s surf era? But no matter. This unsung hero had quite a run of hits, and deserves to be celebrated!

One Hit Wonder Wednesday: 99 Red Balloons by Nena

Any song that features "Captain Kirk" in its English and German, can't be all bad. So here, to kick of the inaugural One Hit Wonder Wednesday, is Nena. In all her unshaved glory.




Nutball Preacher/Singer Sues Rachel Maddow

Image from source
If you praised a religion for more "properly" dealing with the gay by killing gay people, as you believe your religion instructs but doesn't do, what would that make you? Would it make you a person who thinks gay people should be killed? After all, you're supposedly a fervent believer in your religion, and you believe your religion commands it.

Well, nutball preacher/singer/artiste Bradlee (cute spelling, hellooooo) Dean thinks that's slander. So, he's suing people, notably MSNBC hostess, Rachel Maddow. As though this dude's reputation could possibly be in any danger. His followers would like him more for that. Duh.


[Excerpt]


Bradlee Dean Sues Rachel Maddow, MSNBC

Bradlee Dean is a man who hates lesbians and gays with such a passion that he does not care to be bothered with the facts, the realities, or, for that matter, his own religious books. His You Can Run But You Cannot Hide International Inc (that is, his ministry is a corporation, that means he worships not God but the Dollar) is planning on suing MSNBC, Dr Rachel Maddow and others for, supposedly, defaming him. . .

Read more at: Lez Get Real

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

John Boner Boehner Responds to Obama's Speech

Ah, Boner Boehner. So charisma free. So talking-pointy. So fact challenged. At least he didn't seem soused, and his mouth twitch wasn't going bananas as it usually is. Boehner tries to come off as a tough guy, and isn't very convincing. He also acts as though he speaks for "the American people," when in reality he speaks for hardcore conservatives (ie., tea baggers). Boehner is still pushing "Cut, Cap and Balance," a hastily thrown-together plan that was all but abandoned last week. Boehner falsely called it "bipartisan." And he finished by using Karl Rove's odd "Obama's blank check" meme, from the Crossroads GPS attack ads.


The biggest joke in this reply is the allegation that President Obama created this crisis. He didn't. And Boehner's (for once euphemistic) tears for people seeking jobs is also darkly funny, since there has been no attention to jobs out of Boehner's House.




Monday, July 25, 2011

President Obama's Prime Time Speech on Debt Ceiling

I thought the speech was pretty good, though like pundit Melissa Harris-Perry, I at first thought that Obama was giving us the Republican plan first. Which goes to show you how far to the right the Democrats have moved in this fight. The President did a good job of explaining the situation to a nation that doesn't always pay attention to such things. But I think the main point--the fact that the debt ceiling can be raised right this second with a one-sentence bill--could have been clearer. All the tax cuts, spending cuts, possible revenue enhancements, slashing Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security. . .all the posturing, all of the "deals". . .have nothing to do with raising the debt ceiling. It's a manufactured, phony crisis that is becoming a real one.



Get Ready: HBO's True Blood Made a FOX "News" Joke

At least Eric doesn't prounce her name, "Sook-eh."
Image from source, Rolling Stone
 
. . .And you can bet that some conservatives are going to freak out about it. I don't care. I laughed out loud, which is something that rarely happens when I watch television. In fact, the last time was when--on last week's True Blood--Eric Northman ate Sookie's fairy godmother.

[Excerpt]


'True Blood' Recap: Sookie and Eric Get Closer, the Witches Get More Powerful and It's Time for a Vampire History Lesson
 
 . . .With plan A a bust, Bill turns to plan B: Recruit the four remaining sheriffs of the Louisiana area to his home for a strategy session, where we finally get the history lesson that explains who Marnie's goddess is: a 17th century Spanish sorceress named Antonia, who was burned at the stake and used necromancy to pull all vampires within 20 miles into the daylight, including priests and nuns. "Vampires have often found it advantageous to maintain a hidden presence in humanity's most powerful institutions," Bill explains. "In the 1600s that was the Catholic church. Today, as you all know, it's Google and Fox News." Despite the heavy desire to wage war, Bill upholds the Authority's mandate that any spilled mortal blood results in the true death. The devil is indeed in the details. . .

Read more at: Rolling Stone

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Should Oregon Congressman Be Kicked out for Forcing Himself on a Woman?

Um, yes. He's a Democrat? Yes. He looks to be a "furry." Yes, yes, yes. If Anthony Weiner had to go, this guy needs to go. No debate, no investigation, just go.

[Excerpt]

 Dem. leaders consider forcing Oregon’s Wu out of office after sex allegations

Party leaders in the House and within the greater Democratic Party are considering ways they can force Oregon Rep. David Wu out of office after recent allegations that the congressman forced himself on a young woman, Politico reported.  . .

Read more at: Raw Story

Blast from the Past: Embarrassing Pop Hits

Every year or three, a song comes out that becomes a hit by sheer force of stupid. It's got some irresistibly catchy something to it, and it lights the world on fire. For a time, you simply can't escape it. And then, everyone comes to their senses, and the song is relegated to the dustbin of history. Usually. Sometimes, nostalgia colors our perception, and the song becomes a "classic." But these embarrassing hits are usually by one- or two-hit wonders, and if they do become something of a classic, it is almost exclusively by someone who remembers it from their youth. I'll cop to liking one or two. . .or three. . .of these songs, but I'm not going to tell you which ones!

And truth be told, I'm probably only scratching the surface here. There are undoubtedly many, many others. The first one I can remember stands out in  my memory only for its repetitive (sort of) beat boxing, and the repeated use of the word "butt." See, this was the early 70s, when "butt" was almost a dirty word, particularly for a little kid like me. It was and is The Bertha Butt Boogie, by the Jimmy Castor Bunch. The next alarmingly popular oddity (though I'm probably skipping many) is Afternoon Delight by the Starland Vocal Band. Yeah, it's a little ditty about having sex in the middle of the day, though it sounded much more innocent than that at the time.



And while the 70s was rife with embarrassment, the next two that really stand out for me are from the disco era, namely Disco Duck by the nerdtastic Rick Dees, and A Fifth of Beethoven by The Walter Murphy Band.



Though we could hang in the 70s for a lot longer on the subject, let's move to the 80s, which could teach the 70s a thing or two about shame. Leaving the visuals aside (when Patty Smythe of Scandal and possibly Pat Benatar might take the prize), there were numerous puzzling songs out there. Take Mickey by Toni Basil for instance. Sure the visuals are crazed. But how did this song every become a hit? And--in a rare case of a megastar getting caught in the shame web--how the hell did Physical become Olivia Newton-John's biggest hit? In fact, it was one of the biggest hits of the decade, which tells you a little something about the 80s.



Sometimes, a song is intended as a novelty song, but still fits into the category of embarrassing. If this was a seasonal post, I might go with Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer. But since it is July, I think Pac-Man Fever fits the bill. After that, much of the 80s becomes a blur of bad. It's just too much to sort through. You've got Milli Vanilli, Rockwell, Jermaine and LaToya Jackson. . .it's just too much. But in 1989, one gem stands out: Biz Markie's Just a Friend. So complete in its badness, that it is played for laughs today.



So let's leap into the 90s, and save the 80s for a later date. There are four major embarrassing hits that instantly leap to mind, each a testament to 90s WTF? In no particular date or badness order, they are:

I'm Too Sexy by Right Said Fred, Supermodel by RuPaul, The Macarena by Los del Rio and Mambo No. 5 by Lou Bega.



And with that, I sort of have to call it a day and wrap up. Have there been embarrassing hit songs since the 90s? Oh, I'm sure there have been. But I'm not sure we've gotten enough distance from them to realize their awfulness. I'd be happy to take suggestions for a sequel post though. Drop me a line with your picks, and I'll get to work. In the meantime, Happy Monday!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Over Time with Bill Maher: July 22, 2011

Let's Just be Honest: Michele Bachmann is Bananas


August 10 Deadline Instead of the 2nd for Debt Ceiling?

Image from source, HuffPo
Oh, great. A whole extra week of this crap? And even then, there is no guarantee that all this stalling won't cause damage before the deadline. This is all so stupid, and no matter how some people view President Obama, I can't envision a universe where I'd find John Boner Boehner or Mitch McConnell to be inspiring.

But you know what? Today, the Don't Ask, Don't Tell discriminatory policy in the military was ended (or more accurately, it's being euthanized in 60 days). So I went to right-wing world outpost FreeRepublic.com to see what they had to say about it. Aside from some of the most bigoted, hateful and nasty rhetoric this side of Linda Blair in The Exorcist, you know what I found? A commenter who was blaming Obama for circumventing Congress. The poster "couldn't remember" the House and Senate voting to end DADT. This despite the fact that it was a bloody battle in the waning days of the lame duck Democratic Congress. Despite the fact that it was pushed further and further down the schedule, and that Harry Reid had to threaten working on Christmas to get a vote. There was even one delusional FReeper who claimed that the mainstream media swept it under the carpet and didn't cover it!


So, see? No matter how protracted and ridiculous a battle in the Congress is, we forget about them, given enough time. Right now, we're so invested in this debt ceiling/national debt/deficit/tax cuts/revenue increase/spending cut battle, it's almost all that is on the news. But if we manage not to default and cause a cataclysmic world-wide depression, this battle will fade away too.


[Excerpt]

Debt Ceiling Deadline Might Be August 10, Not August 2: Report 

For months, markets have been girding themselves against the possibility that the U.S. will reach the limits of its borrowing ability on August 2 and default on its debts. But researchers at Barclays Capital think the real deadline may not be until a week later. . .

Read more at: Huffington Post

Friday, July 22, 2011

Rupert Murdoch's Devil Horns are Showing

"Those aren't 'orns, thats a bloody collar, you poofter!"
Image from source, TV Newser
 
Posted only because of the funny first-glance image of this particular screen capture. It's from TVNewser, an informative source of information about television news. Just don't wander into the commentary boards, it's like FOX Nation let out for recess in there.

Source: TV Newser

Cenk Uyger Talks with Keith Olbermann about MSNBC Departure

How much you wanna bet that Cenk ends up on Current TV? As for the subject of the discussion, it proves that MSNBC--for good or ill--is not the flip-side of FOX "News." Can you imagine Sean Hannity being taken aside and spoken to for being too hard on liberals? Of course not. I personally don't have much of an issue with the bigwigs at MSNBC sort of laying boundaries for their hosts. It shows that there are limits to how left or forward they want to lean. That is their purview. And obviously, Current TV can brand themselves as fully left if they want to. But fair warning, MSNBC: Don't mess with Rachel.

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Ends in 60 Days

You can put your arms down now, dude! (He must be tired)
Image from SFGate
Why 60 days? I dunno, there are things about politics that are just stupid. Whether or not gays and lesbians can be in the military is a rather binary option: yes or no. There are no necessary changes to make, no special accommodations needed. Gay people co-exist in every other societal realm with no special needs, no particular differences (even showers, if you've ever been to camp or belonged to a gym. . .go ahead and freak out). So the 60 days is dumb. But the even dumber "Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't Pursue" policy is over after that. It's about time.


[Excerpt]

Pentagon certifies military readiness for DADT repeal


President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen certified Friday that the U.S. military is prepared to accept openly gay and lesbian service members, and that doing so will not harm military readiness, according to the White House. ..

Source: CNN

Norway Hit with Twin Terror Attacks

Norway?

[Excerpt]

Norway reels after bomb blast, youth camp attack 

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Twin terror attacks rocked Norway on Friday when a bomb wrecked government buildings in the capital, including the prime minister's office, and a gunman dressed as a police officer opened fire at an island youth camp. . .

Read more at: MSNBC

What Happens in Vegas: Steve Wynn Makes Olbermann's Worst Persons

When I heard Steve Wynn mouthed off about President Obama, I just sort of shrugged. After all, people like Wynn, and Oscar Goodman and others here in Las Vegas often make critical remarks about politicians. When Obama said that recipients of government bailouts shouldn't take junkets to Las Vegas before it was paid off, he was right. But because he used Vegas as an example, prominent Las Vegans squealed like stuck pigs. They do it for publicity, and to draw attention to the town. But Wynn leveled charges at Obama, about how he was so bad for the business community. . .when his company has just had its best quarter ever. So, he made the #1 spot in Countdown with Keith Olbermann's Worst Persons in the World. Rep. Allen West (R-FL) and half-governor Sarah Palin (R-You Betcha) rounded out the list.

What Happens in Vegas: Resort Sues the Tea Party

(Summoning up my best Nelson Muntz impression from The Simpsons) HA-HA!

The for-profit, astro-turfiest wing of the tea party, The Tea Party Express Nation is in trouble. The owners of The Venetian and Palazzo are suing them for big bucks. You might remember that the wind was already going out of the tea bagger balloon last year. They planned this big event in Las Vegas, and then postponed it. . .and then canceled it all together. But it would seem that they made a deal with arch-conservative Sheldon Adelson's properties, and they welched. It's really so funny sad.
She's doing it wrong. Image from BizarroBlog

[Excerpt]


Las Vegas resort sues tea party group over hotel bill

(Excerpt consists of only a headline because the LVRJ is particularly litigious. Sorry.)

Read it at: Las Vegas Review-Journal

Thanks to Stupid Monkey Planet for the link.


Jury Summons

%#$@?!!! For the fourth time in 16+ years, I have a jury summons. It isn't the duty involved--I think that might be very interesting--it's the low compensation. Especially in this economy. Unfortunately for me, the excuse that worked three times in the past (I'm the first link in the chain, if I don't work, nobody works), while valid, no longer works. It seems we Clark County folks voted to change it so that jury excuses are only for the old or sick. I don't remember that one.  So, I'll have to wait until my appearance date, and plead my case before the judge. Phooey. If only they paid something approaching my actual wages, and there was someone at work who could take over for me there.

Andrew Breitbart's BIG Announcement


Heehee. . .




[Excerpt]

Andrew Breitbart Needs A Hug

. . .Andrew Breitbart and his blogs of bloviation never entered my reality until
FreedomWorks’ president wrote a post on BigGovernment.com that targeted me, personally, with half-truths, invasion of privacy, an illegal recording and a healthy dose of McCarthyism. After researching Breitbart further, I knew one day I’d make a silly video about him. After all, the man purposely makes himself into a media buffoon to increase his profile and drive hits to his websites. . .

Read more at: The D.C. Douglas Blog

Rick Santorum Finally Cracks Due to "Google Problem"

Santorum, thrusting an appendage into the air.
Image from source, Mediaite

There is much said in right-wing world, about Dan Savage's little prank on Rick Santorum.They're also twitterpated because Savage told a few raunchy (and one decidedly-in-poor-taste, immediately-apologized-for) jokes. Boo-hoo, it was a comedy show on HBO. Treating even badly-told, improvised jokes on premium cable as though they are serious, murderously serious is just stupid. And acting like Santorum is some poor, innocent waif who never done nobody wrong is equally stupid. In case anybody wonders why Savage created a new, scandalous definition for the world "Santorum," needs to remember that Santorum himself has said lots of nasty things about gay people, including comparing homosexuality to "man on dog sex."

As you might imagine, many gay people find having their relationships compared to bestiality to be rather insulting. Santorum has never apologized. So live with it Ricky. You know what you have to do to have the Google bomb extinguished.

[Excerpt]


Angry Radio Rant And Campaign Email Show Dan Savage Has Finally Gotten To Santorum

It was bound to happen sometime– Rick Santorum has been sex columnist Dan Savage’s favorite punching bag for some time now, launching a Google campaign to turn his name into a gay sex euphemism and fantasizing aloud about having sex with him. Santorum took most of it in stride, or at least silence, but it appears Savage’s appearance on Real Time last Friday was the last straw. . .

Read more at: Mediaite




James O'Keefe's Newest Bogus Video

This guy really likes to play dress up. Image from RawStory
I'm beginning to think that James O'Keefe is actually a performance artist. His right-wing "hooks" are just to get FOX "News" and right-wing sites to display his "art." Given that a) all of his big "exposés" are either more or less than they appear, that b) the big giant douche, Andrew Breitbart is his biggest supporter, and c) that O'Keefe is so fricking skeevy, I just wonder how the hell he's managed such fame/infamy. I mean kudos dude, you brought down the evil ACORN, even though you proved nothing. That's magic, man. But what else have you done, except look like an idiot while getting "FOX fans" to notice you?

[Excerpt]

James O'Keefe's Latest 'Terrorist' Medicaid Sting Goes After Woman For Following Law

Stop me if you've heard this one. A man goes into a public assistance office in Charleston, South Carolina in a kilt, tells them he's a member of the Irish Republican Army and asks for help for 25 fellow Irishmen in a hospital who need Medicaid. . . 

Read more at: RawStory






Thursday, July 21, 2011

FAA May Lose Funding Tomorrow.

Funny how some big stories fly under the radar. But it seems the FAA runs out of funding on Friday if the Senate and House can't come to an agreement, that's what happens. That they've been kicking this can down the road for years--20 times--kinda shows how stupid our government has become.

So, what are they fighting about this time? Republicans are basically holding a bunch of small airports hostage, threatening their funding, and thus the livelihoods of many people around those small towns. The amount of federal funding for those airports is comparatively tiny. Plus, Republicans want to do some union squashing. Naturally.

[Excerpt]

Fate of FAA caught in partisan stalemate over funding


With the 20th stopgap funding extension for the nation's aviation system about to expire, the congressional stalemate over a multibillion-dollar, long-term funding bill has turned into a strikingly nasty squabble. . .

Read more at: the Seattle Times

Marcus Bachmann Sings!

Inspired by a bit on The Stephanie Miller Show, I present Marcus Bachmann, singing at a Michele Bachmann Rally. . .

Al Franken Calls Out Focus on the Family for Lying About Gay Families

I love this guy.

Olbermann: Could News Corp. Be Behind "Climategate" Hacking?

Oooh. Do you remember what "climategate" was? A bunch of scientists had their emails hacked, see, and their mails were kind of unprofessional and snarky. It was alleged--often by News Corp. property FOX "News"--that the emails proved that global warming (aka global climate change) was a hoax. Or something. They didn't really do that, but you know how those FOX narratives go. Like how ACORN may have been exonerated, but FOX viewers still believe that James O'Keefe is some sort of folk hero for "bringin' 'em down."

But how interesting would it be if this whole climategate thing was a result of Rupert Murdoch's companies' illegal hacking? For one thing, it would drag this scandal into an even bigger light.

[Excerpt]

Olbermann: News Corp. could be behind ‘Climate Gate’ hacking

On Countdown Wednesday night, Keith Olbermann discussed with Joe Romm, editor of ClimateProgress.org, the possibility that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation was behind the “Climate Gate” hacking. . .

Read more at: Raw Story

What Happens in Vegas: Policing the Strip

I'm not sure the sight of many uniformed police officers is good for the Las Vegas Strip's image. On one hand, yes, it projects an image of security. On the other, it looks like a police state. Not the most inviting image. Thanks to Stupid Monkey Planet for the link.

I-Team: Securing the Las Vegas Strip



Violent crime in the Las Vegas community may or may not make the news. But crime on the Las Vegas Strip grabs headlines worldwide. Although violent crime in the resort corridor is actually down, a recent string of high-profile incidents has prompted police to deploy in force. . .

Read more at: 8NewsNow

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Borders Bookstore Going Out of Business

Well, this just blows. That chick at the checkout, asking if I'm in the "Borders Club" or whatever the f it is, can just suck it. Borders is going out of business. When I moved to the Las Vegas valley, business and industry wasn't yet quite so segmented. We may not have monopolies these days, but we've surely got duopolies and triopolies. Think of any category of thing, and you'll have trouble going beyond three proprietors, won't you?

I've lived in the Las Vegas valley for 16+ years. All of them have been in the southern valley, 13 of them in Enterprise Township, in the southern-most section. In all of that time, I've had a bookstore in my area for about four years. At Town Square, one of those "looks like it's been here forever" retail clusters, Borders has had a spot. It was the first an only bookstore in my region in the whole time I've lived here.

So now we're down to Barnes & Noble. Period. Yeah, capitalism?

[Excerpt]

With no bids, Borders set to liquidate

Borders Group is seeking court approval to liquidate its 399 stores after it failed to receive any bids that would keep the 40-year-old chain in operation and canceled an auction process.

The U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Southern District of New York is set to approve the move on Thursday. Liquidation sales could start as soon as Friday. . .

Read more at: DelawareOnline

First Wisconsin Recall Goes Heavy Democrat

Image found at Freedom Eden
Well, well, well. Sorry right-wing badgers! The first general election in the recall-a-palooza extravaganza has led to: the challenged Democrat keeping his seat by a mile. Which may be a worrisome harbinger to the challenged Republicans yet to get a vote. But somebody tell me, what's with the f'ed up election schedule in Wisconsin? Eh?

[Excerpt]

Democrat holds onto Wis. Senate seat in recall

A Democratic state senator from Wisconsin easily survived a recall election Tuesday that gave voters their most direct opportunity yet to react to a Republican-backed law that stripped most public workers of their collective bargaining rights. . .

Read more at: The Atlanta Journal Constitution

Daily Caller: Michele Bachmann's Crippling Headaches

Image from source, Daily Caller
I didn't set out to do a spread of Michele Bachmann posts, but that's what it's turning into. Did you see this? It's from Tucker Carlson's The Daily Caller, so if it's a "hit piece" from the "lamestream media," it's from the conservative side.
In a rare case of empathy from me (I'm usually just awful), I feel for Mrs. Bachmann here. I get more than occasional headaches, and not rare enough migraines. I've had them for as long as I can remember, and they quite simply suck. All that said, I've never had to be hospitalized for it. This seems like a bad condition to have for a job as stressful as Congresswoman, let alone President of the United States.

There are literally dozens of reasons that Michele Bachmann shouldn't be President. This one, however, is quantifiable. A person could hold an opinion on this one whether left or right. Is this her Waterloo?

[Excerpt]

Stress-related condition ‘incapacitates’ Bachmann; heavy pill use alleged

. . .The Minnesota Republican frequently suffers from stress-induced medical episodes that she has characterized as severe headaches. These episodes, say witnesses, occur once a week on average and can “incapacitate” her for days at time. On at least three occasions, Bachmann has landed in the hospital as a result. . .

Read more at: The Daily Caller

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Newsbusters Criticizes Left for Bachmann Jokes. . .So THEY Can Joke About it.

Michele Bachmann, being goosed by an overcompensating
Marcus Bachmann.
There's an old trick people use in order to talk about something they think they shouldn't. There are lots of ways to do it. You can say, "Now I'm not saying. . ." and then say the thing you're (cough) not saying. You can say, "Now, I'm just telling you what somebody told me. . ." to deflect the blame. You can act all upset about the topic, and then pass on all the horrible things that were said.

Newsbusters, the "liberal media" watchdog, often employs this tactic, but not usually with such transparency. Over the last three weeks, the media has begun to pick up on something that gay liberals have noticed for a lot longer: Michele Bachmann's husband seems really gay. In addition, "Dr." (a dubious title) Bachmann runs a "Christian" therapy clinic, and it has been shown that the clinic practices the quackery known as "reparative therapy." You know, praying away the gay. Add to this the fact that the clinic takes Medicare money (though it is unclear whether they got it for reparative therapy), and that the Bachmanns have been sketchy with the facts on all of the above (among other things). Finally, Mrs. Bachmann has been an avid--one might say curiously focused--anti-gay crusader.
I'll continue to think it's funny, no matter what Newsbusters thinks.

So, when the media started to put this together, they went for the laugh. Which is fine, I have too. It's freaking funny, and the jokes write themselves. It's all about hypocrisy, the lying and the possible closeted-ness of Mrs. Anti-gay's husband. Also, we've been through this dance before with Larry Craig, Ted Haggard, George Rekers and countless others. But being devoid of nuance, irony-deficient and humor-free, ultra conservatives like Newsbusters can't figure out how liberals could come down on the gay.

I couldn't possibly explain it to them. But I can point out that they're trying to have their cake and eat it too with the excerpted article below. In it, they recap in glorious detail many of the good jokes by several famous people. And per usual, they take a joke that Cher tweeted, and act as though she actually wants to murder Marcus Bachmann. They're wallowing in the fun-ness of the topic, while simultaneously tsk-tsking over it.

Just so you know: I'm gay. But I'm not Marcus Bachmann gay. He'd belong in the revered pantheon inhabited by Rip Taylor, the late, great Paul Lynde and Charles Nelson Reilly. . .if he weren't a despicable (probable) closet case, and quack.

[Excerpt]

Liberal Celebrities, Radio Hosts Make Baseless Jokes and Accusations That Marcus Bachmann Is Gayer Than Richard Simmons
The gay blog On Top reported that “comedian” Janeane Garofalo is the latest in a string of celebrities and activists suggesting Michele Bachmann’s therapist husband Marcus must be gay, including Cher, Jon Stewart, Jerry Seinfeld, and sex columnist/”It Gets Better” bully Dan Savage. Cher even said she wanted to strangle him. . .

Read more at: Newsbusters

The Debt Ceiling: What Would Reagan Do?

Many House Republicans seem to believe that the debt ceiling thingy is no big deal. August 2 is a "fake" deadline, and it's just to scare old people. Obama and Democrats are fear mongering by threatening Social Security and veteran's benefits. And hey, isn't Obama's 50th birthday party on the third? This is a setup! Let the country default! Who cares?

Which is all of course kind of nuts. Even Saint Ronald Reagan understood that, when he was dealing with a difficult Democratic Congress.




Elizabeth Warren is Awesome

Seriously. If she's running for something, I'll vote for her. She's the most well-spoken, "just the facts ma'am" political figure out there. I can't for the life of me figure out why Republicans are so dead-set against her. I'm glad that the guy that Obama is nominating instead of Warren is endorsed by her, but I can't figure out why she was considered impossible to confirm. Yes, I understand why Wall Street and bankers don't want her running a consumer protection agency, but is the GOP that afraid of them?


"Cut, Cap and Balance" Plan is Extreme (and Extremely Dumb)

Image from source, Think Progress
The inelegantly named "Cut, cap and balance" plan offered up by Congressional Republicans allegedly will solve all of our budgetary woes. It would do so by cutting government programs by unrealistic percentages, rolling them back 45 years. It is--I hope--a last ditch effort by Republicans to throw something out there to their Tea Baggers before ultimately allowing the debt ceiling to be raised. We don't have time for this crap.

[Excerpt]

Republican ‘Cut, Cap, And Balance’ Plan Would Require A 25 Percent Cut In Every Government Program

House Republicans are planning to hold a vote tomorrow on the radical “cut, cap, and balance” plan, which stipulates that the federal debt ceiling only be raised if a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution is sent to the states for ratification. As we’ve noted time and again, such an amendment is a phony solution to the nation’s budget challenges, and would force the government into actively making economic downturns worse. . .

Read more at: Think Progress

Monday, July 18, 2011

"News of the World" Whistleblower Found Dead

Whistleblower, Sean Hoare. Yes, really.
When you've got a far-reaching scandal that implicates British government officials, Scotland Yard, Rupert Murdoch and countless others, who can you trust to get the real story out? The Murdoch-owned press doesn't want to talk about it. The rest of the press is a little bit gleeful about it, so maybe not entirely trustworthy. The politicans are trying to save face. And the cops are implicated, so can we trust 'em if they say that the whistleblower--who was found dead--isn't being treated as "suspicious?" Curious though, right?
[Excerpt]

News of the World phone-hacking whistleblower found dead

Sean Hoare, the former News of the World showbusiness reporter who was the first named journalist to allege that Andy Coulson was aware of phone hacking by his staff, has been found dead .
Hoare, who worked on the Sun and the News of the World with Coulson before being dismissed for drink and drugs problems, was said to have been found at his Watford home. . .

Read more at: Guardian

Rudy Giuliani Says GOP Should Stay Out of Our Bedrooms

Dammit, I couldn't help myself.
Image from Democratic Underground
Well, how about that? Yes, there were rumblings about Rudy Giuliani's gay-friendly past back in 2008 when he ran for president. But they never became central. Except for pictures of Rudy in drag, circulated by his (usually Republican) detractors, he pretty much got to avoid the whole sexuality bugaboo. So this year, when again Rudy is toying with running, a year when suddenly social issues are all the GOP rage, it's puzzling that Rudy would go pro-gay. Well, sort of.

He still says he's against gay marriage (sure you are, Rudy, just like Obama is, right?). But this is a place he didn't need to go. In fact, it's a place where any supporter of Michele Bachmann or Rick Santorum would not follow him. Maybe he's trying to set himself apart? Or maybe, he's acknowledging that he can't get on their crazy train?

[Excerpt]

Giuliani to GOP: ‘Get the heck out of people’s bedrooms’

Former Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani thinks his party is making a serious mistake by mounting a national effort to oppose marriage equality.
“I think that marriage should be between a man and woman, but I think that the Republican Party would be well advised to get the heck out of people’s bedrooms and let these things get decided by states,” Giuliani told CNN’s Candy Crowley Sunday. . .

Read more at: Raw Story

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Blast from the Past: Trippy, Dippy, Paula Abdul

Image from Wikipedia
While Paula Abdul might be an unlikely subject for Blast from the Past, my previous Madonna and Janet Jackson posts pretty much made it inevitable. But hear me out! Before Abdul was the little pint-sized basket of crazy next to Simon Cowell on American Idol, she was actually a monster hit machine on the pop charts. Her career wasn't long lived, but it did burn brightly, and probably a little more brightly than you remember.

Paula actually started as a cheerleader and a choreographer. She was helping make MTV videos for acts like Janet Jackson (she's even in the Nasty video) and ZZTop (yes, really). But her first foray onto the pop charts didn't really light it up. Not yet. Knocked Out was her first release. It was released three times, ultimately peaking at #21. From the album, Forever Your Girl, Straight Up is the single that put Paula on the map (and made her label willing to release and re-release all her songs until they hit the top 40!).


Straight Up was a monster hit, zooming to #1 before they even had a video (which ultimately included--for some reason--Arsenio Hall). After that, (It's Just) The Way that You Love Me also became huge, though it was originally released before Straight Up. Then came Forever Your Girl, making three #1s in a row.


Next came Cold Hearted. The sexy dance routine for that one caused a bit of a sensation, much like that depicted in video. Were those boys dancing together? Scandal! And then--still all from the same album, mind you--came Opposites Attract. Yes, that's the one where she dances with a cartoon "MC Skat Cat."



Paula Abdul turned out to be more than a flash in the pan with her second album, Spellbound. The first song, Rush, Rush made it to #1 also. So did Promise of a New Day. Believe it or not, it was now her sixth #1 in a row.


But all good things eventually peter out, and so it is with Paula. She managed three more significant hits from Spellbound, first Blowing Kisses in the Wind, followed by Vibeology. 



The last one was Will You Marry Me, which peaked at #19. Still nothing to sneeze at. It probably did better than the marriage she did get, to Emilio Estevez. After that, Paula Abdul only hit the top 40 one more time, with My Love is For Real, a song that I frankly don't remember. But Paula's music is still fun to revisit, even if you have to do so alone, with headphones on. She's a guilty pleasure, but she's a pleasure.
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