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Showing posts from October, 2009

Lieberman threatens to filibuster health care

Senator Lieberman (Lieberman for CT-CT) says he'll join the Republican filibuster of Senate health care bill if it includes a public option:
"I told Senator Reid that I'm strongly inclined--i haven't totally decided, but I'm strongly inclined--to vote to proceed to the health care debate, even though I don't support the bill that he's bringing together because it's important that we start the debate on health care reform because I want to vote for health care reform this year. But I also told him that if the bill remains what it is now, I will not be able to support a cloture motion before final passage. Therefore I will try to stop the passage of the bill."There are two procedural issues at play here. Most people think of a filibuster as a minority blocking passage of a bill that's already been debated ad nauseum on the Senate floor. That's the most standard filibuster. But on major legislation, it's become more common for the minority…

Bold Prediction: Republican party will split

I'm going to go out on a limb here and predict that before the 2014 mid-terms, the Republican party coalition will split, with the conservative wing going one way and the fundamentalist wing going another way. (Note that I'm using "conservative" in an Andrew Sullivan way rather than a Sarah Palin way.) This could happen in one of two ways: either the fundamentalist wing will solidify its control of the GOP, forcing the conservatives to set up their own party, take over a third party, or become Democrats (as many have already done). Or the fundamentalist wing will break off and take over the Conservative Party or form their own party. I sort of think the latter is more likely, as the right-wing movement thrives on its image as outsiders and insurgents (even when it simultaneously controls the government).

Why do I think this? Two things are prompting me. The first is the special election in New York's 23rd congressional district:
A three-way Congressional race in up…

Our new (to us) dining room table & chairs

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There are two more chairs and 3 leaves to the table, not pictured. I
love having a dining room table (and sitting at the head of it) a lot
more than I thought I would.

The unseen cost of plastic waste

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Photo by Chris Jordan

There's a huge region of the Pacific Ocean that's full of floating plastic garbage. Albatrosses pick up the plastic, thinking it's food, and feed it too their chicks. The chicks die. The plastic in these photos was apparently not moved. It's hideous to see. (Here's a video on the subject of all the plastic in the Ocean.)

Prototype of D&D 4th Edition on Microsoft Surface table

Obviously needs a lot of work and tweaking, but the potential is there (HT: Jak Koke on Facebook):

Surfacescapes Demo Walkthrough from Surfacescapes on Vimeo.

WWII veteran pleads for equality for his gay son

Yay! New marijuana policy from Obama administration

This is good. It looks like the new policy is "If they're in compliance with state law, don't go after them.":
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Obama administration will not seek to arrest medical marijuana users and suppliers as long as they conform to state laws, under new policy guidelines to be sent to federal prosecutors Monday. Two Justice Department officials described the new policy to The Associated Press, saying prosecutors will be told it is not a good use of their time to arrest people who use or provide medical marijuana in strict compliance with state laws.The new policy is a significant departure from the Bush administration, which insisted it would continue to enforce federal anti-pot laws regardless of state codes.Hat Tip: Adam Buchen on DailyKos.

If you get why this is funny...

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...then you get 10 geek points or 10 80's pop culture knowledge points (take your pick). From here. Hat tip: Mad Latinist via email.

Yes, they really are living in a different world

This tends to confirm my worst prejudices about Obama-haters:
A new focus-group of Republican base voters by the Democracy Corps (D), the consulting and polling outfit headed up by James Carville and Stan Greenberg, presents a picture of the GOP base as being motivated by a fundamentally different worldview than folks in the middle or on the Dem side -- and they see the country as being under a dire threat."They believe Obama is ruthlessly advancing a 'secret agenda' to bankrupt the United States and dramatically expand government control to an extent nothing short of socialism," the analysis said." While these voters are disdainful of a Republican Party they view to have failed in its mission, they overwhelmingly view a successful Obama presidency as the destruction of this country's founding principles and are committed to seeing the president fail."The analysis argues that Obama's unpopularity among conservative Republicans is both quantitatively …

There's a rep for that?

Best signs at gay equality march

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The sense of humor evident is awesome. Now Obama and congress need to act. It is past time.

Best Obama Nobel reaction quote so far

"Certainly from our standpoint, this gives us a sense of momentum — when the United States has accolades tossed its way, rather than shoes."

-PJ Crawley, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State.

Oh, snap!

Our cat is back!

Kitty has been found and is with us once again. Yay!

Christianist revisionist American history watch

This is almost unspoofable (Hat tip: Pablo via email). But someone did manage to do it (via Kos). I love how someone trying to depict the heritage of our country in a fundamentalist Christian light managed to include 4 Unitarians (John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Clara Barton, and Susan B. Anthony) as well as Thomas Paine in his portrait. The latter wrote, in Age of Reason:
I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish Church, by the Roman Church, by the Greek Church, by the Turkish Church, by the Protestant Church, nor by any church that I know of. My own mind is my own church.
All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.

How regressive is today's GOP?

Very. In response to a horrifying rape incident, Al Franken proposed an amendment to the 2010 defense appropriations bill that would deny funding to firms that try to prevent raped employees from bringing their cases to court. The amendment passed 68-30. Guess which party the 30 senators who voted against this were from? Yes, our friends the Republican party. Kos:
Of the 40 Republicans in the Senate, only 10 voted for the Franken amendment, including all four women in the Senate GOP. Of the six Republican males who voted for the amendment, all of them represented states outside the deep South -- Bennett (UT), Hatch (UT), Grassley (IA), LeMieux (FL), Lugar (IN), and Voinovich (OH). The other 30 men, including luminaries like David Vitter, John Ensign, and John McCain, didn't think the amendment warranted passage.This is interesting. According to Republicans, a fake pimp and ho, reported to the police, was apparently so beyond the pale that they've worked to strip ACORN of all fe…

Pissing off European Dairy farmers is a bad idea...

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Georges Gobet/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
(brazenly ripped off by me without asking anyone's permission)

...unless you like your milk very fresh. Image stolen from the New York Times.

"Dust Storm" in St. Louis at Washington University

If you're in St. Louis this weekend, come see the show. It's me! It's free! (But I'm gettin' paid big bux (for the performing arts) whoopee!)

Saturday 8:00-9:30 p.m., Steinberg Auditorium, Danforth Campus, University of Washington.

Sunday 4pm, same place.

For more info on the show, see here.