January 17, 2012 archive

Occupy This Blog!

As a matter of policy, TheMomCat and I, DocuDharma and The Stars Hollow Gazette, are firmly against SOPA and PIPA and in support of the January 18th Internet Shut Down Direct Action.

Since our sites are hosted by Soapblox and are community blogs that accept and encourage content from regular members just like you we can’t exactly pull the plug, nor do we think it a public service to do so.

It will in any event be difficult or impossible to operate as usual.

What you can expect is a greatly reduced posting schedule from us and that many links, videos, and pictures will be temporarily unavailable.  I urge desperate readers to revisit our back catalog of political prescience, humor, and time wasting bloopers (not so many of those).

Members may wish to create their own fun.  The ‘Recent’ list is always available and we’ll be around to do promotions of timely topics.

We appreciate your support and interest and look forward to your continued participation in our success together.

Protesting SOPA, Web Sites Go Dark

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Over the weekend the discussion about bills pending in Congress that would change the Internet has started to get some attention. Opposition to Stop Internet Piracy Act, House version and the Senate’s version, Protect the Internet Privacy Act came from the White House in a statement expressing concerns that the bills would stifle innovation and infringe on free speech and lead to “online censorship of lawful activity.” While the White House statement did not say Pres. Obama would veto it, it was a clear condemnation of the flaws critics have pointed to in the bill.

One of the most controversial portions of the House bill that would require Internet service providers to block infringing websites was removed completely by House Judiciary Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX). Rep. Darrel Issa (R-CA) secured a promise from Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) that the House will not vote unless there is consensus on the bill. A Reddit campaign managed to persuade Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) to oppose the bill, for instance.

On the Senate side, PIPA had up unit now blocked by a lone senator, Ron Wyden (D-OR. He has now been joined by Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD)and Mark Udall (D-CO). Similarly, six Republican Senators, including two co-sponsors — Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Chuck Grassley (R-IA) (the two co-sponsors) along with  John Cornyn (R-TX), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Mike Lee (R-UT) and Tom Coburn (R-OK) — have asked Aenate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D_NV)not to bring the cloture vote he’s promised to bring on the 24th. Sen. Pat Leahy, a key sponsor of the Protect IP Act, has conceded that more study is needed for the provisions that would allow rogue sites to be delisted from the Domain Name Service (basically the Internet’s phone directory). Critics have warned that mucking with DNS could splinter the architecture of the Internet.

On Wednesday beginning at midnight, several major web sites will go dark for 24 hours. Websites Wikpedia, Reddit, Craig’s List and ICanHasCheezburger.com are among the larger sites that will participate. The document-sharing site Scribd, for instance, made a billion pages vanish to protest the bill. Wikipedia users can view proposed designs for “blackout pages,” which may appear in place of normal Wikipedia entries during the protest on January 18.


click on image to enlarge.

In New York City, New York Tech Meetup, a 20,000 member community of people working in the New York Tech Industry are protesting the pending legislation in from of the offices of Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand who are still supporting the bill and urging Sen. Reid to bring the bill to the floor for cloture. One of the largest areas of job growth in NYC has been in the tech industries. New York Tech believes that SOPA, besides threatening freedom of speech, will kill those jobs.

You can physically join the NYC Protest at this site:

Emergency NY Tech Meetup.

When: Wednesday January 18, 2012

Time 12:30-2:00PM

Where: 780 Third Ave (at 49th street) – outside the offices of New York Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

Our regular featured content-

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This is an Open Thread

The Stars Hollow Gazette


Little Orphan Airedale

Not Abel?

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Who’s your go daddy(.com)?  <iframes> use Suicidal Sweatshop Chinese Child labor!

Meet me at Camera 3- (they’re people!).

Oh, you want to know about The ONLY Question of any Political Significance in 2012.

Google informs me that there may be more than one herb involved, get your lips off that bong you smoke suckers.  We have got to get to the big story-

But I won’t.  Yet.  We need some exploratory committee first.


Austerity Insanity

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. It then must follow that Germany’s Chancellor, Andrea Merkel has got to be insane.

Eurozone in new crisis as ratings agency downgrades nine countries

Standard & Poor’s strips France of its AAA credit rating, rekindling fears in the markets over future of single currency

S&P said austerity was driving Europe even deeper into financial crisis as it also cut Austria’s triple-A rating, and relegated Portugal and Cyprus to junk status.

The humiliating loss of France’s top-rated status leaves Germany as the only other major economy inside the eurozone with a AAA rating, and rekindled financial market anxiety about a possible break-up of the single currency.

S&P brought an abrupt end to the uneasy calm that has existed in the eurozone since the turn of the year by downgrading the ratings of Cyprus, Italy, Portugal and Spain by two notches. Austria, France, Malta, Slovakia and Slovenia were all cut by one notch.

The agency said that its actions on eurozone ratings were “primarily driven by insufficient policy measures by EU leaders to fully address systemic stresses”. It added that fiscal austerity alone “risks becoming self-defeating“.

Germany,too may be facing a downgrade as it slips into recession as its economy is contracting in the face of the deflationary economic policy of the euro zone. So what does Frau Merkel do? You got it, more austerity.

Merkel: Europe Faces ‘Long Road’ to Win Back Trust

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Standard and Poor’s downgrades of nine countries underline the fact that the eurozone faces a “long road” to win back investors’ confidence, pushing Saturday for it to move quickly on a new budget discipline pact and a permanent rescue fund.

I agree with Chris in Paris at AMERICAblog that the ratings agencies should be rendered useless considering their part in the current economic crisis but they are right about austerity. The Europeans led by Merkel are ignoring reality.

On this Day In History January 17

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

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.

January 17 is the 17th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There are 348 days remaining until the end of the year (349 in leap years).

On this day in 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower delivers his farewell address to the nation warning the American people to keep a careful eye on what he calls the “military-industrial complex” that has developed in the post-World War II years.

A fiscal conservative, Eisenhower had been concerned about the growing size and cost of the American defense establishment since he became president in 1953. In his last presidential address to the American people, he expressed those concerns in terms that frankly shocked some of his listeners.

Eisenhower began by describing the changing nature of the American defense establishment since World War II. No longer could the U.S. afford the “emergency improvisation” that characterized its preparations for war against Germany and Japan. Instead, the United States was “compelled to create a permanent armaments industry” and a huge military force. He admitted that the Cold War made clear the “imperative need for this development,” but he was gravely concerned about “the acquisition of unwarranted influence…by the military-industrial complex.” In particular, he asked the American people to guard against the “danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.”

Military-industrial complex (MIC) is a concept commonly used to refer to policy relationships between governments, national armed forces, and the industrial sector that supports them. These relationships include political approval for research, development, production, use, and support for military training, weapons, equipment, and facilities within the national defense and security policy. It is a type of iron triangle.

The term is most often played in reference to the military of the United States, where it gained popularity after its use in the farewell address speech of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, though the term is applicable to any country with a similarly developed infrastructure.

It is sometimes used more broadly to include the entire network of contracts and flows of money and resources among individuals as well as institutions of the defense contractors, The Pentagon, and the Congress and executive branch. This sector is intrinsically prone to principal-agent problem, moral hazard, and rent seeking. Cases of political corruption have also surfaced with regularity.

A similar thesis was originally expressed by Daniel Guerin, in his 1936 book Fascism and Big Business, about the fascist government support to heavy industry. It can be defined as, “an informal and changing coalition of groups with vested psychological, moral, and material interests in the continuous development and maintenance of high levels of weaponry, in preservation of colonial markets and in military-strategic conceptions of internal affairs”.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning
Above all be of single aim; have a legitimate and useful purpose, and devote yourself unreservedly to it.

–James Allen

Subdivisions 2

Late Night Karaoke

Republican Debate Open Thread

Sometimes people say to me (in varying tones of accusation)- ‘ek, you don’t seem to focus much on Republicans.’

That’s because the Republican Party is a fringe group of insane, racist, Randians.

Their ideas and policies are no more worthy of consideration in rational political discourse than the lead addled ravings of a Caligulan Courtier.

Except, of course, in Washington D.C. which speaks more volumes about their bootlicking insularity than there are in the Encyclopedia Brittanica.

With Huntsman’s departure the only lips on that stage tonight, including the audience, moderators, and questioners, that might breathe a word of truth, fact, or relevance are Ron Paul’s.

Does that scare you?  Let me say it again then- RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul, RonPaul.

What should scare you is that only a wacky, racist, Bircher operates in the same world of reality that you and I and the other 99.9% of us belong to and for that he is reviled and ignored by an establishment elite with a 30 year record of abject failure.

The debate is on Faux Noise.  If you feel compelled you can comment below.

Nine Boxes

“Who told you to box them up?”

“Ah, nobody, actually.”

“Those go into the 2912s and then we ship them out.”

If anything is to be learned in a military-industrial-intelligence-health-New World Order-globalist-IMF-Council on Foreign Relations complex company it is NOT to be deviating from the prescribed approved signed off certified, ECO, Mil Spec 1534-B method of watching paint dry.  Any exertion of creativity, individual thought, green alternative methods, workarounds due to defective equipment which dates back to 1973 is highly strictly verboten, forbidden, illegal, discouraged, frowned upon…….So what does this really mean.