Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when
we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Everyone’s welcome here, no special handshake required. Just check your meta at the door.
Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.
This Day in History
The capture of Mosul by Isis means a radical change in the political geography of Iraq and Syria. Moreover, the impact of this event will soon be felt across the Middle East as governments take on board the fact that a Sunni proto-caliphate is spreading across northern Iraq and Syria.
The next few weeks will be crucial in determining the outcome of Isis’s startling success in taking over a city of 1.4 million people, garrisoned by a large Iraqi security force, with as few as 1,300 fighters. Will victory in Mosul be followed by success in other provinces where there is a heavy concentration of Sunni, such as Salahuddin, Anbar and Diyala? Already, the insurgents have captured the important oil refinery town of Baiji with scarcely a shot fired by simply calling ahead by phone to tell the police and army to lay down their weapons and withdraw.
So after the grotesquerie of the Taliban and Osama bin Laden and 15 of the 19 suicide killers of 9/11, meet Saudi Arabia’s latest monstrous contribution to world history: the Islamist Sunni caliphate of Iraq and the Levant, conquerors of Mosul and Tikrit – and Raqqa in Syria – and possibly Baghdad, and the ultimate humiliators of Bush and Obama.
From Aleppo in northern Syria almost to the Iraqi-Iranian border, the jihadists of Isis and sundry other groupuscules paid by the Saudi Wahhabis – and by Kuwaiti oligarchs – now rule thousands of square miles.
Apart from Saudi Arabia’s role in this catastrophe, what other stories are to be hidden from us in the coming days and weeks?
When most women become pregnant, understandably they believe the choice of how they give birth will remain theirs; whether to deliver vaginally or through cesarean surgery or where to give birth, at home or at a hospital. Decades ago, those decisions were well within the domain of pregnant patients whose reproductive liberty and autonomy interests gained constitutional recognition in the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade.
After all, whose body is it anyway? But what may have seemed clear-cut decades ago, is now put to the test by doctors and lower courts.
The Supreme Court handed a victory to gun control advocates on Monday by upholding the conviction of a former police officer from Virginia who lied when he stated he was buying a handgun for himself when it actually was for a relative.
In a 5-4 ruling focused on the role of what is known as a “straw buyer” for a gun, the court upheld Bruce Abramski’s conviction for making a false statement when he bought the gun. He had filled out a form, required under federal law, saying he was the prospective owner, when the gun was intended for his uncle.
Here’s a recurring dream I used to have growing up on the South Side of Chicago. I’m walking down a street by myself and a man is walking toward me. Just as we’re about to pass each other, I see that he’s holding a razor, a razor that he lifts quickly to try and slash across my face. I jerk my head back violently, which is the moment that wakes me each time – breathless, my heart shaking my chest.
I had this dream in response to a series of real events. For a short while during the 1950s, a man was terrorizing women and girls in public places in Chicago, randomly slashing at them. But I went on having the dream, in one variation or another, well into my forties, I think because the crime seemed so terrifyingly random, a matter of pure bad luck. Like going to the movies and having someone step out onto the proscenium in battle dress and start shooting. Like sitting in a classroom learning to read when the door opens and a madmen enters, fully armed.
Must Read Blog Posts
The 3 Biggest Right-Wing Lies About Poverty
by Robert Reich
Why Does the Right Embrace Ignorance as a Virtue?
by Amanda Marcotte
10 Most Un-Christian Church Signs
by Katie Halper
The Daily Wiki
An extinction event (also known as a mass extinction or biotic crisis) is a widespread and rapid decrease in the amount of life on earth. Such an event is identified by a sharp change in the diversity and abundance of macroscopic life. It occurs when the rate of extinction increases with respect to the rate of speciation. Because the majority of diversity and biomass on Earth is microbial, and thus difficult to measure, recorded extinction events affect the easily observed, biologically complex component of the biosphere rather than the total diversity and abundance of life.
Over 98% of documented species are now extinct, but extinction occurs at an uneven rate. Based on the fossil record, the background rate of extinctions on Earth is about two to five taxonomic families of marine invertebrates and vertebrates every million years. Marine fossils are mostly used to measure extinction rates because of their superior fossil record and stratigraphic range compared to land organisms.
Since life began on Earth, several major mass extinctions have significantly exceeded the background extinction rate. The most recent, the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event, which occurred approximately 66 million years ago (Ma), was a large-scale mass extinction of animal and plant species in a geologically short period of time. In the past 540 million years there have been five major events when over 50% of animal species died. Mass extinctions seem to be a Phanerozoic phenomenon, with extinction rates low before large complex organisms arose.
Estimates of the number of major mass extinctions in the last 540 million years range from as few as five to more than twenty. These differences stem from the threshold chosen for describing an extinction event as “major”, and the data chosen to measure past diversity.
Something to Think about over
All things are subject to interpretation whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth. ~Friedrich Nietzsche
Stupid Shit by LaEscapee