Open thread below....
Photo of Curiosity's parachute high above Mars taken by High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment
camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance orbiter.
An image from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance orbiter captured the Curiosity rover still connected to its 51-foot-wide (almost 16 meter) parachute as it descended towards its landing site at Gale Crater.
"If HiRISE took the image one second before or one second after, we probably would be looking at an empty Martian landscape," said Sarah Milkovich, HiRISE investigation scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. "When you consider that we have been working on this sequence since March and had to upload commands to the spacecraft about 72 hours prior to the image being taken, you begin to realize how challenging this picture was to obtain."The image of Curiosity on its parachute can be found [here].
The image was taken while MRO was 211 miles (340 kilometers) away from the parachuting rover. Curiosity and its rocket-propelled backpack, contained within the conical-shaped back shell, had yet to be deployed. At the time, Curiosity was about two miles (three kilometers) above the Martian surface.
"Guess you could consider us the closest thing to paparazzi on Mars," said Milkovich. "We definitely caught NASA's newest celebrity in the act."
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2011:
In June, the National Labor Relations Board proposed a rule change to streamline union representation elections by reducing frivolous litigation and bringing the transfer of information into the 21st century by allowing electronic filing. The proposal would slightly reduce the ability of corporations to drag out the election process unreasonably, without increasing penalties for abuses or making major changes like allowing electronic voting. Already, the proposal has drawn ridiculous, contradictory objectionsat a hearing and an outsourcer's bill of rights in the House. Now, the US Chamber of Commerce says that if the proposal passes, they'll sue:
?I think it?s a given that we would go to court and challenge the regulation, depending on how it comes out, of course. Maybe it will come out differently than we suspect,? said Randy Johnson, the Chamber?s senior vice president of labor, immigration and employee benefits. ?Whether or not we seek an injunction against the reg, we probably would.?
Of course it's a given. The NLRB's proposal would make things incrementally easier for workers, therefore it must be crushed lest anyone get any ideas about making things substantially easier for workers.
I?m taking a break from the Repug congressional countdown opposing health care reform for tonight ? I?ll probably get back to it tomorrow (entering the home stretch and a whole new level of crazy, I might add).
And speaking of nuts, I give you this, and this, and kudos to President Obama for this (speaking again of nuts).
I have to tell you that I?m personally disgusted more than I ever thought I would be with the routinely demonic vilification of President Obama by various right-wing mental defectives, one example of which is on display on that disgusting billboard shown above. And I ABSOLTUELY DEFY anyone to try and manufacture some faux equivalency between this and any violence threatened against George W. Bush (yes, it did happen, and it was also wrong, but nothing as orchestrated with this type of frequency).
And finally on this subject, I give you this, with a good response by K.O, including the "a" word, and I'm fine with that when talking about Nugent because it's true.?
?and I?ve put this up a few time already I know, but it always seems to fit, doesn?t it, particularly given what I just pointed out (warning: bad word alert).
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One of my least favorite journalism things is lamenting something for being covered while ? covering it. A writer describing something as a ?media phenomenon? while ignoring the obvious fact that said writer works for a media outlet.We see this all the[...]
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Title: Is There Life On Mars?Artist: David Bowie
The awesomeness that is Curiosity put this song into my head today. Got a favorite song about space?
On net President Obama has a weaker grip on his 2008 voters than the Republican party has on theirs. According to Gallup, 9 percent of people who voted for Obama in 2008 now back Mitt Romney. In comparison only 5 percent of people who voted for John[...]
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During his life, Wade Page was nothing if not a relentless promoter of hate and the style of music he loved.
He found a nexus of both in the world of white power rock, where racist skinheads play their own brand of crunchy, loud punk and metal infused with lyrics trashing Jews, blacks, immigrants and anything else bothering them at the moment.
On Monday, authorities identified Page, 40, as the tattooed gunman who opened fire during the weekend at a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis., killing six people before being shot to death by a police officer.
It didn't take long to uncover a trail of Page's postings on various white supremacist message boards, where he constantly promoted the white power bands he played in and knew.
"Definite Hate is looking for a new drummer," said one posting written under an alias he frequently used, End Apathy, on a message board for the racist skinhead faction known as the Hammerskins. "Must be a skinhead, committed to White Power and the movement, and have the skills to pay the bills."
While music was usually his main focus, the postings made clear Page was also deeply involved with the Hammerskins organization. While he was living in North Carolina last year, he posted multiple messages encouraging people to come to "meet and greet" gatherings for the group near the city of Rocky Mount.
"All White nationalists are welcome!" said a message posted by End Apathy that appeared on March 22, 2011. "If you are wanting to meet people, get involved and become active then you really need to attend. Stop hiding behind the computer or making excuses."
The person using the alias occasionally posted similar messages on the well known white supremacist site Stormfront.org, but he appeared to favorite the Hammerskin message boards at crew38.com. The latter website showed he posted 250 times since joining in March 2010.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks extremism in the U.S., documented Page's ties to the white supremacist music scene on its own website early Monday. Senior fellow Mark Potok wrote that Page was the leader of a band that shared the name of his message board alias, End Apathy. In interviews later in the day, researchers with the SPLC said they had tracked Page for at least a decade.
The Anti-Defamation League, another group that monitors extremists, also appeared to have been tracking him. The organization's website published multiple photos of Page playing in white supremacist bands. The ADL said he was a prospective member in the Hammerskins last year and had multiple racist tattoos.
Still, both the FBI and local police said at a news conference that Page was never on their radar. He had only lived in the Milwaukee area for a short time and never did anything there to draw law enforcement attention.
"Nobody knew that this guy was a threat," Teresa Carlson, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Milwaukee office, said. "That's the problem with these types of cases."
Authorities said they believed Page acted alone in the Sunday morning killings. Investigators briefly went looking for a man they described as a "person of interest" who was seen standing near the temple after the massacre, but by Monday afternoon they said that they found him and determined he was unconnected to the case.
The investigation, authorities said, revealed that Page walked up to the Sikh temple, known as a gurdwara, and shot a man standing outside and then went in and opened fire on more people who were there for religious services. Then at some point, he came outside and ambushed a police officer who was responding to 911 calls. He shot the officer eight or nine times, officials said. The officer survived but was in critical condition. Authorities said another officer at the scene then shot and killed Page.
Bernard Zapor, the agent in charge of the St. Paul, Minn., field office of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, said Page used a 9mm handgun that was purchased legally. He also used multiple ammunition magazines, Zapor said.
It's still too early to tell for sure whether Page's white supremacist views were the motive for what the FBI's Carlson described "a possible act of domestic terrorism." However, the victims were clearly ethnic and religious minorities. Those who were killed were all members of the Sikh religion, which has origins in Asia. The victims were Sita Singh, 41, Ranjit Singh, 49, Satwant Singh Kaleka, 65, Prakash Singh, 39, Paramjit Kaur, 41, and Suveg Singh, 84.
Two others along with the officer were also still in the hospital in critical condition on Monday.
Other details about Page's life also emerged throughout the day. It was still unclear what brought him to Wisconsin, but authorities said he served more than six years in the Army when he was younger.
Army spokeswoman Lt. Col. Lisa Garcia told TPM that Page was a decorated veteran who specialized in psychological operations, or PsyOps. The job description was to help U.S. commanders overseas "communicate information to large audiences," she said.
Page joined the Army in April 1992 and initially trained at Fort Sill, Okla. He then spent time at Fort Bliss, Texas before finishing out his military career at Fort Bragg, N.C. He was never deployed overseas and left the Army in October 1998.
Page received numerous medals and decorations during his service, Garcia said, including the Army Commendation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and the Humanitarian Service Medal.
Garcia did not know how Page left the Army, but the Oak Creek police chief said their investigation had found that he received "a general discharge and he was ineligible for reenlistment."
At some point, Page found his way into the world of white supremacy. A MySpace page for his band said it was started in 2005. It described the type of white power music they played as "a sad commentary on our sick society and the problems that prevent true progress."
In an interview published in 2010 by the record label that released his music, Page said he had been playing music since he was 13. In 2000, he sold almost everything he owned and set out on a motorcycle trip to attend white power rock concerts throughout the nation. He said he started the band after figuring out he had something to say.
"The concept was based on trying to figure out what it would take to actually accomplish positive results in society and what is holding us back," he said. "A lot of what I realized at the time was that if we could figure out how to end peoples apathetic ways it would be the start towards moving forward."
After the shooting, the white supremacist record label that put out his music scrubbed all mentions of End Apathy and Page from its website.
"We do not wish to profit from this tragedy financially or with publicity," the record label said in a statement posted online. "In closing please do not take what Wade did as honorable or respectable and please do not think we are all like that."
We've been talking about how this Great Recession, and its aftermath, represents a private-sector recovery and a public-sector depression. We haven't seen government payrolls get slashed this deeply in some time in America. In fact, we now have[...]
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Dear South Carolina Democrats, Today marks the 47th anniversary of President Lyndon B. Johnson's signing into law the historic Voting Rights Act of 1965. This landmark legislation was the product of the bipartisan efforts of President Lyndon Johnson, Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfeld, and Senator Minority Leader Everett Dirksen. On the day in which he signed the legislation, President Johnson stated that the right to vote was "one which no American, true to our principles, can deny."
Although this important law has been renewed five times, with bipartisan support, the spirit of this law-the prevention of voter discrimination and protection of voting rights--is now under partisan attack, including here in our state of South Carolina. We need to elect federal and state officials who understand that the right to vote is a cornerstone upon which America's Democracy is built and is not to be manipulated for political whims.
Democrats across this country are pushing back on the numerous attempts to erode our rights for political gains. We cannot do this alone. We need your help to push back against these attempts to restrict the rights of qualified and eligible voters. My friends, in order for this great country to remain the beacon of democracy for the world, we must support candidates that enhance our rights and not restrict them.
We have a President who is fighting for us and protecting our rights. Let's give him some admirable men and women who can support his efforts and protect against the assault on our voting rights.
Click here to sign up to volunteer to help get Democrats elected in November.
Donate $10 or more now. We need to support the President and our other strong candidates in South Carolina who believe in the spirit and sanctity of the Voting Rights Act and our right to vote.
We can't do it without you.
SCDP, 1st Vice Chair
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