June 19, 2008 archive

The End Of The World As We Know It

Or at the least that first effects of The Recession have finally arrived on privileged corners of Manhattan.

This from the The New York Times, which as you will recall, contains all the news that’s fit to print, and chronicles events in the world from its lofty perspective.  The headline: “In weak economy, forgoing $4 lattes for home brews.”

The ”latte effect” of the go-go years had consumers spending $4 a day on coffee. Now the downturn is forcing them to rethink the wisdom of such habits.

As inflation squeezes budgets, middle-class Americans are taking fresh stock of their spending in search of ways to save a nickel or a dime. The result: People are giving up a variety of small financial vices.   ..snip

While the idea that little costs add up is nothing new, it comes with added sticker shock as food and gas prices sprint along at a record pace. The result is that people are finally putting the breaks on vices once considered necessary — like frappuccinos. ..snip

The result is fewer latte runs. Literally.

Last month, Starbucks Corp. blamed rising food and gas prices when it reported a 28 percent drop in second-quarter earnings, and said sales at U.S. stores open at least a year had dropped — indicating some may finally be summoning their inner Scrooges.

This cute article is a sign that even the New York Times, which usually lives in an opulent world, recognizes that the economy is crashing and that even greater discomfort is coming.  Being The Times, it says it’s no big deal.  Ha ha ha.  People are just tightening their belts a little bit.  It’s not a big deal, really.  We’re all doing fine, right??  Well, aren’t we?    

Pony Party……Summertime

It’s summertime!

(I couldn’t decide which was better (because my flash player is messed up))

The magnolia’s in bloom……….

How’s your summer going?

Pony Party is an open thread! Hang out & chit-chat or drop your questions, concerns here.

But Do Not wRECk the pony!!!


geomoo is writing RAW tonite!!

Front Page~10PM eastern

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Pony Party – lolPony


…This is Open Thread…  

No Biting!

Docudharma Times Thrusday June 19

John McCain Parties Like Its

September 10, 2001

With A Mind To Match

Tuesday’s Headlines:

Iowa flooding could be man’s fault, experts say  

Four charged over killing of Politkovskaya

Transsexual singer faces jail after questioning Turkey’s military

President Mugabe’s mobs target opposition families

Simon Mann names Sir Mark Thatcher as coup plotter

Burma (Myanmar) boots medics, citing no need

Taleban ‘cleared from Kandahar’  

Israel seeks Lebanon talks after Gaza pact

Gaza truce takes hold, skepticism abounds

Colombia’s coca crop booms despite US-backed crackdown

Deals With Iraq Are Set to Bring Oil Giants Back


Published: June 19, 2008

BAGHDAD – Four Western oil companies are in the final stages of negotiations this month on contracts that will return them to Iraq, 36 years after losing their oil concession to nationalization as Saddam Hussein rose to power.

Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total and BP – the original partners in the Iraq Petroleum Company – along with Chevron and a number of smaller oil companies, are in talks with Iraq’s Oil Ministry for no-bid contracts to service Iraq’s largest fields, according to ministry officials, oil company officials and an American diplomat.

Retired teacher detained in China after decrying shoddy construction

Chinese authorities have detained a retired teacher who criticized the shoddy school construction that led to the deaths of thousands of…

By Ching-Ching Ni

Los Angeles Times

BEIJING – Chinese authorities have detained a retired teacher who criticized the shoddy school construction that led to the deaths of thousands of children in May’s devastating earthquake, a Hong Kong human-rights group said Wednesday.

The Information Center for Human Rights and Democracy said Zeng Hongling, who wrote about official corruption in school construction and post-quake relief efforts, was detained June 9 in Chengdu on charges of “inciting state subversion.”

One of the essays Zeng wrote for the U.S.-based Chinese-language Web site www.observechina.com was titled “Earthquake relief efforts fully reveal the true face of party officials.”


Paulson To Urge New Fed Powers

Bank Would Help Police Wall Street

 By Neil Irwin

Washington Post Staff Writer

Thursday, June 19, 2008; Page D01  

Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. plans to call today for the Federal Reserve to be given new, explicit powers to intervene in the workings of Wall Street firms to protect the financial system, adapting his vision of how the financial world should be regulated to reflect the lessons of the collapse of Bear Stearns.

“Our nation has come to expect the Federal Reserve to step in to avert events that pose unacceptable systemic risk,” Paulson plans to say in a speech today, according to prepared remarks obtained by The Washington Post. But the central bank “has neither the clear statutory authority nor the mandate to anticipate and deal with risks across our entire financial system.”

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning

State of the Onion XI

Sound bytes have their uses, but can be quite limiting as well.

Art Link

Personal View

Born in the wrong body?

Bunch of crap

in my opinion

The one I have

is the only body

I was given

Nobody else has

the one I was

supposed to have

Born in the wrong culture


in the wrong time period

most likely

on the wrong planet

quite possibly

But it’s not like

I had a choice

in the matter

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–February 3, 2006

Please join us on the inside to celebrate, venerate, regenerate and/or motivate our muses.  I’m hoping to instigate something more appropriate.  

Muslims barred from picture at Obama event

Crossposted at Green Mountain Daily.

I’ve got a lot of grace for Barack Obama. He impresses me one moment and pisses me off the next (his AIPAC speech is a prime example). Then there are his staffers who treated me poorly including Suzanne Goldberg of The Guardian U.K. This time however was low. Really low.

It’s from Politico so hopefully they have their facts straight. They’re known for getting their stories wrong.

Ben Smith writes:

“Two Muslim women at Barack Obama’s rally in Detroit on Monday were barred from sitting behind the podium by campaign volunteers seeking to prevent the women’s headscarves from appearing in photographs or on television with the candidate.

The campaign has apologized to the women, both Obama supporters who said they felt betrayed by their treatment at the rally.

“This is of course not the policy of the campaign. It is offensive and counter to Obama’s commitment to bring Americans together and simply not the kind of campaign we run,” said Obama spokesman Bill Burton. “We sincerely apologize for the behavior of these volunteers.”

Heeba Asef, a 25 year-old lawyer who came to see Obama.

“I was coming to support him, and I felt like I was discriminated against by the very person who was supposed to be bringing this change, who I could really relate to,” said Hebba Aref, a 25-year-old lawyer who lives in the Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills. “The message that I thought was delivered to us was that they do not want him associated with Muslims or Muslim supporters.”

The story continues below the fold.

Pony Party – lolPony


…This is Open Thread…  

No Biting!

NYT: U.S. Oil Majors Back in Iraq

In November 2007, President Bush and Prime Minister Maliki signed a “Declaration of Principles” without the approval of the U.S. Congress or the Iraqi Parliament.  This document outlined military and economic commitments between the two countries.


(White House Photo: Bush and Maliki signing the Declaration of Principles, Nov. 26, 2007)

Later, this Declaration was broken into two agreements, to be ratified by July of this year.  One, the Status of Forces Agreement, concerns the military part of the Declaration and has received the most attention in the blogosphere.  The other, called the “Strategic Framework Agreement,” concerned “Cultural and Economic ties”, that is to say, oil.

The New York Times is tomorrow reporting that U.S. oil majors are getting back into Iraq as of June 30.  This appears to me to indicate that the second half of the Declaration is succeeding.

Inspiring — Al Gore — Endorsement of Obama

This is an FYI for everyone.  For those who did not hear Gore’s speech lending his support to Obama, here it is — Gore speaks so strongly, eloquently — a mentor for Obama!  Goose bump speech by Gore!  SPIRIT APLENTY!

Listening to this — you must FEEL BETTER!  🙂

Pony Party: A little Carlin



The most unfair thing about life is the way it ends. I mean, life is tough. It takes up a lot of your time. What do you get at the end of it? A Death! What’s that, a bonus? I think the life cycle is all backwards. You should die first, get it out of the way. Then you live in an old age home. You get kicked out when you’re too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you’re young enough to enjoy your retirement. You do drugs, alcohol, you party, you get ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating…

…and you finish off as an orgasm.

~George Carlin

Dogs & Cats

Have a Nice Day! (embed disabled)

& don’t Rec the Pony Party!

Cruel and Unusual

Did you ever make a mistake when you were 13 years old? Hang around with the wrong people? Go to the wrong places? Take risks with your behavior?

Well, imagine that in addition, you’re a black or brown 13 year old who has lived a lifetime with neglect, abuse, poverty, crime, and drug abuse on a daily basis. Imagine the kinds of “mistakes” you might make.

Do you deserve to spend the rest of your life in prison?


Well, in this United States of America, that’s exactly what has happened to 73 children who were sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole for crimes that were committed when they were 13 or 14 years of age. All of this according to a report by the Equal Justice Initiative.

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