Two articles on Republicans and Language:
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The GOP presidential field for 2012 is a field knee-deep in horseshit. And it’s like they say: where you have lots of horseshit, you gotta have a horse’s ass. Or, as in this case, more than one horse’s ass. I always wondered about that[...]
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David Mason was one of those musicians who, although pieces of their work are very famous, remain mostly anonymous to the general public.
As the story goes, Paul McCartney, looking to add some flourish to Penny Lane, happened to catch Mason on the telly playing the piccolo trumpet as a member of the English Chamber Orchestra. The Beatle then recruited Mason to play a solo in the middle of the song- for which Mason received the one-time payment of a whopping 27 pounds and 10 shillings. Quite cheap for a piece that sears right into the memory upon the first listen!
Mason, who in his career was a member of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the New Philharmonia Orchestra, Covent Garden Opera and the English Chamber Orchestra, passed away on April 29, 2011, at the age of 85.
A request for you Clubbers: Please show some more examples of those relatively unknown musicians who have made memorable contributions to the work of more well known musicians and/or groups.
At the end of this post is the Texas Progressive Alliance round-up. The TPA is a confederation of the best politcal bloggers in Texas. With the round-up this week is information about the protest to be held this upcoming Monday at the opening to the new Tea Party headquarters in Houston. From local politcal blogger [...]
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COLUMBIA, S.C. - May 12 - The South Carolina Senate late Wednesday passed legislation that will require voters to show photo identification in order to cast a ballot. South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicle statistics show that nearly 180,000 voters in South Carolina ? most of whom are elderly, student, minority or low-income voters ? will be disenfranchised as a result of this discriminatory bill. Proponents of the bill claim the voter ID requirement will curb in-person election fraud. The South Carolina Election Commission, however, reports that no cases of fraud exist.
Voter ID bills have been introduced across the country this legislative season, but South Carolina is only the second state to pass legislation this year. The state becomes one of only four, along with Georgia, Indiana and Kansas, to require voters to present photo identification at the polls. The bill will now go to Gov. Nikki Haley, who is expected to sign it into law.
The following can be attributed to Victoria Middleton, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of South Carolina:
?We hope that Gov. Haley will veto this bill and tell South Carolina lawmakers that we should be seeking ways to encourage more voters, not inventing excuses to deny voters the ability to cast their ballots. This bill sends a clear message that you shouldn?t be allowed to vote unless you can afford a photo ID and the documents needed to get one. No citizen should have to pay to vote. Such an assault on basic American principles is not only unconstitutional, it?s unconscionable.?
The following can be attributed to Katie O?Connor, staff attorney of the ACLU Voting Rights Project:
?Nothing is more fundamental to our democracy than the right to vote. Rather than erecting hurdles that prevent Americans from voting, lawmakers should ensure that every eligible voter is allowed to vote and that every vote counts. Claims of election fraud are both misguided and inaccurate and are only a distraction from what is really a coordinated effort to suppress the voting rights of thousands of eligible voters.?### The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
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From the WSJ ...A law enforcement official with knowledge of the case said Dominique Strauss-Kahn, head of the International Monetary Fund, was taken into police custody after being removed from an airplane at Kennedy Airport.According to the official,[...]
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Fine, but will this also include the damage to the critical infrastructure caused by Wall Street? Why the hard line with hackers and the soft touch for the people who lost trillions of dollars and caused the recession? Wired:
Hackers who breach and cause substantial harm to critical infrastructure systems would face a mandatory minimum three-year prison sentence if the White House gets its way.
The Obama administration is requesting the mandatory prison sentence in a legislative proposal it submitted to Congress on Thursday, which outlines a long but vague list of cybersecurity provisions the White House would like included in upcoming bills. The list includes a number of changes to laws governing hacking (.pdf), as well as laws authorizing the federal government to assist private companies in securing their computer networks when asked to mitigate threats.
The administration also wants to create a national data-breach law that would help standardize the patchwork of state laws and force companies that operate critical-infrastructure systems to produce a security plan customized to protect against threats to their systems. The plans would be subject to evaluation by an independent commercial auditor and give the Department of Homeland Security authority to request changes to the plans if the government deems them insufficient.
Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed a law approving the use of medical marijuana. His signature makes Delaware the 16th state (plus Washington, DC) to approve the medical use of marijuana.[...]
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There, there, little lady. These lies are for your own good:
A Texas-based pro-life group has a serious problem with the way search engines work. Their problem, it seems, is that when a woman searches for ?abortion? in Google, she is generally directed to ways in which she can obtain an abortion.
Online For Life, a self-described ?non-profit outreach group,? has found a way to change that. The group is buying Google ad space in the hopes of misdirecting women looking for information on abortions.
Punishing women and doctors:
Ms. Giordano, a freelance writer and editor, has been fighting Stage 4 breast cancer for four and a half years now, and while it has metastasized to her bones, court records show that her monthly treatments have kept her condition ?stable and not progressing.? Mr. Snyder, who was divorced from Ms. Giordano after her diagnosis, recently moved away from his family to take a job as an executive at Sears Holding, Inc. He asked the court to grant him sole custody, arguing that he was the parent with a paycheck, and that his ex was too sick ? and her future too uncertain ? for the children to stay with her. She accused him of being abusive and unfaithful during their marriage, and says that sending the children to Chicago would deprive her of her kids when she most needs them, would separate her children from her at a time when they most need her, and would discriminate against her because she has cancer.
Two weeks ago, Judge Gordon ruled in favor of Mr. Snyder.
Women and the economy:
The ?mancession? is behind us. Men suffered 69 percent of the job losses between the onset of the recession in December of 2007 and last February, when the labor market hit bottom. Job growth in the 14 months since has been anemic, though men have fared noticeably better than women. While men have regained only a fifth of the jobs they lost, women have done even worse, recovering less than a tenth.
The job situation for women is poised to deteriorate further.
And finally, some silver linings:
According to Mark Richmond, UNESCO?s Global Coordinator for HIV and AIDS, the landmark study gives an economic basis to the argument that sexuality education provides a key platform for HIV prevention amongst young people.
?We now have the data and analysis to make a stronger and better informed case for investing in school-based sexuality education programmes, particularly in those countries most affected by the epidemic and prioritized for attention in the new UNAIDS Strategy 2011-2015.?
The idea behind the Slutwalks is simple, yet so often fails to get through: rape is rape, no matter what the victim is wearing. The Slutwalks--after the original one in Toronto was successful and showed up on YouTube and on Internet pictures--have sprung up organically. They tend not to have a vastly unifying principle beyond this: if the law, and society, treat women who are raped as sluts who deserved it, than we are all sluts, because we can all be raped at any time, no matter what we are wearing.
To simplify it even further, a Boston marcher carried a sign reading, ?Sluts Don?t Cause Rape. Rapists Do.?
Yesterday, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission — an entity within Congress chaired by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) charged with investigating human rights abuses — held a hearing titled “Human Rights in Bahrain,” designed to probe abuses against pro-democracy activists in the Arab monarchy.
Noticeably absent among the witnesses testifying were any representatives from the U.S. government, which has been closely allied with Bahrain throughout the uprising and resulting humanitarian crisis. On the hearing’s website, you can see that both witnesses called from the State Department, William J. Burns and Jeffrey D. Feltman, declined to appear:
McClatchy reports that “scheduling conflicts” are the reason that the two officials did not appear, although no explanation is given why the State Department did not send replacements. “I was expecting at least one, possibly two witnesses from the State Department to testify,” said a disappointed McGovern.
At the hearing, Human Right’s Watch’s Joe Stork stressed the need for a more forceful response from the United States, which has been very mute in reaction to the abuses in the country, an oil-rich monarchy that houses U.S. military forces:
And unfortunately, in contrast to Syria, Libya, and other sites of unrest and repression, the United States government has had little to say about any of this, at least in public, and those few words have tended to be general in the extreme. [...]
Quite frankly, at a time when night after night masked armed men, both uniformed and plainclothes, are breaking into homes and hauling off Bahrainis to unknown locations, to interrogation centers where torture or ill-treatment are routine, a time when people are pulled out of cars at checkpoints and beaten, a time when people suffering gunshot or other wounds inflicted by security forces fear going to medical centers where other security forces beat and arrest them – these are times when something more forceful and more specific is badly needed.
The latest outrage in the brutal crackdown in Bahrain involves the demolition of mosques. Dozens of mosques frequented by the oppressed Shiite majority have been bulldozed and destroyed by the ruling government, including some that were centuries old.