October 22, 2009 archive

Al Franken Smackdown And Other Greatest Moments

The Young Turks found this video of Al Franken laying the smackdown to a Hudson Institute stooge Diana Furchtgott-Roth. She was trying to scaremonger that the public option would increase medical bankruptcies, but was rejected by the logical and knowledgeable Senator.

AF: I wanna ask you, how many bankruptcies because of medical crisis were there last year in Switzerland?

DFR: I don’t have that number for you but I could get back to you.

AF: I can tell you how many it was. It was zero. Do you know how many medical bankruptcies there were last year in France?

DFR: I don’t have that number for you but I could get back to you if you like.

AF: Ya it’s zero.

Crossposted to the Daily Kos (with Poll) and The Progressive Electorate

Grayson SCHOOLS Paul Broun on Constitution. He will NOT yield! (Update: Now with even more EPIC WIN

      Crossposted at Daily Kos

This guy is a TRUTH MACHINE!

    This is another absolute beaut from the CongressmanWithGUTS, Alan Grayson (BIG D-FL08).

     In a hearing on the Republican Witch Hunt over ACORN (pardon to any witches), Alan Grayson SCHOOLS the Republicans on the committee and achieved classic EPIC WIN!

    Watch

A partial transcript and more below the fold.

Docudharma Times Thursday October 22




Thursday’s Headlines:

Despite H1N1 fears, many worry about vaccination

U.S. pressures Japan on military package

South Carolina embarrassed by politicians behaving badly

Lead lawyer in Stevens prosecution resigns senior post

Goods Flood Gaza’s Tunnels, Turning Border Area Into a Shopping Mecca

Hopes rise of end to impasse as Iran gets two days to back nuclear deal

Afghan run-off may force US hand on troops

Chinese GDP ‘set’ to hit target

Hurling: Ireland stunned by gay star

Berlusconi ‘snubs King of Jordan in favour of Vladimir Putin birthday party’

Four-year drought pushes 23 million Africans to brink of starvation

Will Vatican lure Africa’s Anglican anti-gay bishops to Catholic church?

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

Comb 0:



(Click on image for larger view)

The muses are ancient.  The inspirations for our stories were said to be born from them.  Muses of song and dance, or poetry and prose, of comedy and tragedy, of the inward and the outward.  In one version they are Calliope, Euterpe and Terpsichore, Erato and Clio, Thalia and Melpomene, Polyhymnia and Urania.

It has also been traditional to name a tenth muse.  Plato declared Sappho to be the tenth muse, the muse of women poets.  Others have been suggested throughout the centuries.  I don’t have a name for one, but I do think there should be a muse for the graphical arts.  And maybe there should be many more.

I know you have talent.  What sometimes is forgotten is that being practical is a talent.  I have a paucity for that sort of talent in many situations, though it turns out that I’m a pretty darn good cook.  🙂  

Let your talent bloom.  You can share it here.  Encourage others to let it bloom inside them as well.

Won’t you share your words or art, your sounds or visions, your thoughts scientific or philosophic, the comedy or tragedy of your days, the stories of doing and making?  And be excellent to one another!

Experts: Sirhan Sirhan Did Not Kill RFK

One thing I really like about this place is how most of the folks here aren’t in the junior-high-school style rah-rah-rah bullshit mode of  “The Dems are OUR team and that other team sucks and is the cause of all our problems!”

Most of us have outgrown that.   It’s why we’re here and not at that other place, where that attitude prevails.

So this is why I wanted to share something I saw today, it’s a most fantastic documentary on the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy.   It’s called “RFK Must Die:  The Assassination of Bobby Kennedy” and was made by a filmmaker named Shane O’Sullivan, and broadcast on the BBC.   You can rent it, or buy it now.   I happened to catch it, quite by chance, on The Documentary Channel, which is right next to CNN (ha!) on Dish TV.

The reason I’m sharing this is because many of the conversations here, about such things, always seem to lead to “well, who exactly ARE the men behind the curtain”?  

This film doesn’t answer as to exactly these people are specifically, but lets you know who they are in a general sense.

As many people have pointed out, there are a great many parallels between 9/11 and the JFK assassination, such as Peter Dale Scott in this article here (highly recommended).   And it’s obvious whoever was behind the JFK murder also committed RFK’s.  

Oddly enough, I had actually written about this documentary a little while back at DK, when I stumbled across the following:


MASHANTUCKET, Conn. — New forensics evidence presented Tuesday during a symposium at Foxwoods suggests Sirhan Sirhan did not fire the fatal shots that killed Sen. Robert Kennedy in 1968.

The essay I wrote went on to discuss a few other details, such as this:


These guys aren’t the first to consider a “second gunman”.  The first was probably the Los Angeles corner who did the autopsy, Thomas Noguchi.  In his autobiography, he reports:


“Until more is precisely known…the existence of a second gunman remains a possibility. Thus, I have never said that Sirhan Sirhan killed Robert Kennedy.”

Why would he say such a thing?  Well, even before these new recordings came out in which 13 shots are heard (and Sirhan Sirhan’s gun only held eight bullets), Noguchi discovered that there were more bullet wounds than there were bullets — considering that RFK had been shot with four bullets, and there were five people also wounded, presumably by five more bullets.  The LAPD rationalized this by saying that some of the wounds must have been caused by one bullet hitting more than one victim, and they even presented an extremely convoluted case as to all the whacky trajectories the bullets must have taken.  However, the main sticking point, the point that probably haunted Noguchi, and many others, is the fact that the shot that killed Kennedy was fired from just a few inches away from the back of his head, behind his ear — powder burns proved it.  Yet Sirhan Sirhan was never closer than five or six feet away, and always facing Kennedy.  

Grayson: Fox and Republicans “The Enemies Of America”

That was just one of a host of new lines that Rep. Grayson threw out there tonight on the Ed Show. My other favorite was when he said the party of No has become the party of Nobody.

Crossposted to the Daily Kos (PLEASE REC) and the Progressive Electorate PLEASE VISIT 😉.

Late Night Karaoke

Open Thread

News of the Abused

Just a few items. Short, but not sweet.

Court rejects Calif. plan to cut prison population

October 21, 2009

AP

SACRAMENTO, Calif. —  A federal judicial panel has rejected the Schwarzenegger administration’s plan for reducing California’s prison population because it failed to meet the terms of an earlier court order.

In August, the panel ordered California to reduce its inmate population by roughly 27 percent, or 40,000, over two years. The courts have found that prison overcrowding is the main cause of negligent medical and mental health care.

Confronting Rupert Murdoch on his Copyright Hypocrisy

Over the last little while, I have been essaying about the New Media Economy, from What Can Newspaper Reporting Learn from Yuricon? through Can the Hero Model Save the Publishing Industry? to Can the Teaspoon Model stand up to Bloodsucker Streaming Sites?.

Now, Rupert Murdoch, NewsCorp, and Fox are real big advocates of respect for copyright:

Fox sued Warner Bros. in 2008, alleging that the studio and the movie’s producer, Larry Gordon, failed to obtain the rights from Fox, where the project had been in development.

The studios did not announce details of the settlement. But under the terms of an agreement hammered out over recent days, Warner Bros. agreed to pay Fox as much as 8.5% of the film’s gross receipts plus about $1.5 million to cover the movie’s development costs, according to a person familiar with the situation. The agreement extends to sequels or spinoffs, the person said.

So when Japanese anime is streamed by bootleg video streaming sites – why is Rupert Murdoch’s MySpace happy to continue host the videos, even after they have been informed that the material is bootleg material? Indeed, in some of the videos you can see the logo of the site that is providing legal free streams – since the bootleg was made by a “premium” subscriber to the legal streaming service.

Is Rupert Murdoch’s MySpace and Twentieth Century Fox breaking the law? Well, no – that is, they have the legal right to wait until the copyright owner notifies them of the violation.

Which is the point of the system that the Big Corporations have set up. A big firm with lucrative media can set up a unit to regularly sweep through internet for bootleg copies, and issue a legal Cease and Desist letter. But a smaller New Media company, in a smaller niche market – a smaller niche market that has seen four distribution companies shut down, restructure or go bankrupt in the last four years – does not necessarily have the resources for that operation.

And Murdoch’s MySpace will continue streaming videos for bootleg “free anime” – until made to stop.

U.S. History They Don’t Teach You In School

Overnight Caption Contest

Blue Cross Already Raising Premiums

My wife’s company is one that still has health benefits.  They don’t provide health care plans for free, but, they do pay 50% of the premiums.  This year, her company spent $16 million dollars in their share of premium costs.  Next year, that will figure will double, as will our premium rates under Blue Cross/Blue Shield.

If you read my reply to Rep. Joe “You Lie” Wilson, you know that he is one of the GOP politicians against health care reform that helps Americans.  I received a reply to that email.  It was blank.  Utterly and totally blank.

If you can, go to this link at Firedoglake and help Jane Hamsher by signing her petition.

Now… what is going on with my health care premium…

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