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This Week with George Stephanopoulos notes the passings of ten service members in Afghanistan.
US Army MSG Gregory R Trent, 38, Norton, MA
US Marines Capt Matthew R Manoukian, 29, Los Altos Hills, CA
US Marines GySgt Ryan Jeschke, 31, Herndon, VA
US Marines SSgt Sky R Mote, 27, El Dorado, CA
US Marines SSgt Scott E Dickinson, 29, San Diego, CA
US Marines Cpl Richard A Rivera Jr, 20, Ventura, CA
US Marines LCpl Gregory T Buckley, 21, Oceanside, NY
US Army PFC Andrew J Keller, 22, Tigard, OR
US Army SSG Eric S Holman, 39, Evans City, PA
US Army PFC Michael R Demarsico II, 20, North Adams, MA
According to iCasualties, the total number of allied service members killed in Afghanistan is now 3,153.
In addition, the following notable names lost their lives this week:
Journalist Kathi Goertzen, author and publisher Helen Gurley Brown, producer Al Rabin, actor Ron Palillo, musician Bill Tillman, author Harry Harrison, musician Bob Birch, state representative Larry R Brown, engineer Victor Poor, character actor William Windom and singer/songwriter Scott McKenzie.
Today they're taking the oldest commissioned warship in the U.S. Navy out for a little sail and turn around.Navy's oldest commissioned warship to sail againBy JAY LINDSAY, Associated PressFri, Aug 17, 2012The USS Constitution, which was first launched in[...]
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Our regular featured content-On This Day In History August 19 by TheMomCatThese featured articles-No Dancing II by ek hornbeckWhat We Now Know by TheMomCatPirates And Emperors Are The Same Thing by TheMomCatOur weekly features-Six In The Morning: On[...]
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Will one of my republican friends reading this post please explain "legitimate rape" to me?
"Rep. Todd Akin, the newly-christened GOP Senate nominee in Missouri, said this weekend that ?legitimate rape? rarely causes pregnancy.
Explaining his no-exceptions policy on abortions, Akin was asked why he opposes abortion even when the pregnancy is the result of rape." [Source]
I don't think that Todd Akin has explained to us what he meant by that statement as yet, but he might as well save his breath. If I were the head of the Missouri republican party I would be begging Mr. Akin to drop out of the race as soon as possible. But who knows? Maybe his strange take on the subject of rape will not affect his standing with the voters in the Show- Me state. It probably won't among republicans, but what of the other independent minded people who actually think for themselves? We will see.
In case you haven't been paying attention, there was yet another horrific act committed by an extremist group here in America over the past week. This one took place down in Bayou country.
"NEW ORLEANS (AP) ? At least some of the seven people arrested in a fatal shootout with Louisiana deputies have been linked to violent anarchists on the FBI's domestic terrorism watch lists, a sheriff said Saturday.
Detectives had been monitoring the group before Thursday's shootout in Laplace in which two deputies were killed and two more wounded, said DeSoto Parish Sheriff Rodney Arbuckle. His detectives and other law enforcement discovered the suspects were heavily armed adherents to an ideology known as the "sovereign citizens" movement.
The FBI has classified "sovereign citizens" as people who believe they are free from all duties of a U.S. citizen, like paying taxes. The FBI considers the group's members a danger for making threats to judges and law enforcement, using fake currency and impersonating police officers." [Source]
When the Department of Homeland Security issued a report in 2009 detailing concerns about growing right wing extremist movements in America, folks on the right --and their media arms like FOX NEWS-- were quick to jump to the defense of these nut cases, and they played down the report as just more partisanship from the Obama administration. Their outcry was loud and effective. So much so that Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano, was moved to apologize.
I really wish that she hadn't done that, because her department was right. These groups are on the rise, and they are becoming more violent and extreme with every passing day. Emboldened by like minded individuals on the Internet, conservative talk radio, and irresponsible and unhinged public figures; these types of groups have become uncomfortably close to the American main stream. They hate the government. (Sounds familiar?)They hate the fact that America is getting browner, and they hate that a man with a Muslin sounding name can lead the country that they grew up in.
"Sovereign citizens are a loosely organized movement founded in the 1970s and more fully developed in the 1980s, according to the Anti-Defamation League website. Sovereign citizens believe that all levels of government have no jurisdiction over them and resist ? sometimes with violence ? authority including police, the website said.
They also like to use what is dubbed "paper terrorism." It involves using frivolous lawsuits and fake documents and of using genuine documents such as IRS forms to intimidate, harass and coerce public officials, law enforcement officers and private citizens."
Hmmm, "frivolous" lawsuits. Again, does this sound familiar?
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JR: Once a week I’ll do a weekend update on Language Intelligence. It’s had better reviews and better sales than any of my previous books — it hit #73 on Kindle nonfiction bestseller list – probably because it is more entertaining and more useful. I am reposting Van Jones’ review because I wouldn’t have published this book if not for him. He read a draft in 2010 and urged me to get this book out there. Thank you Van!
by Van Jones via HuffPost
In a war of ideas, the weapon of choice is words. Even when equipped with better and more popular ideas, progressives are losing the fight on ideas because of how we communicate those ideas — or fail to communicate them.
When I read an early draft of Joe Romm’s Language Intelligence two years ago, I told Joe it changed my life. I realized what I had learned from osmosis and practice through hundreds of speeches and direct feedback were secrets figured out centuries ago by the Elizabethans and others. Social scientists and advertisers have confirmed these secrets are the key to being memorable and persuasive.
To get our ideas out there, progressives need to communicate more powerfully. We aren’t failing to come up with good solutions. We’re failing in explaining them to the American people. That’s why I am encouraging every progressive to read Joe Romm’s new book: Language Intelligence: Lessons on Persuasion from Jesus, Shakespeare, Lincoln, and Lady Gaga.
Let me give you a quick example of Romm’s Rules, in effect: When Rebuild the Dream campaigned to prevent the doubling of Stafford loan rates this summer, we followed his formulas for effective communication. By doing so, we were able to help millennials and students win a big victory on student loans.
The first rule: keep it short. “Don’t Double My Rate” got straight to the point of what we were trying to accomplish. It’s hard to envision a campaign slogan like “Keep federal Stafford loans at their current low rates” taking off in the same way.
The second and third rules: Use figures of speech and repetition to make memes memorable. The alliterative nature of “Don’t Double” helped make the campaign catchy, effective, and persuasive. As President Obama took up the “Don’t Double My Rate” cause, the term was repeated in speeches and the media, and it was constantly trending on Twitter until Congress took action to pass “Don’t Double.”
That is just one example of the usefulness of Joe’s approach. As one of the most impactful climate bloggers on Earth, Joe Romm knows the ins-and-outs persuasive communication. His Language Intelligence is the progressives’ field guide in the war of ideas. If you liked Lakoff’s Don’t Think of An Elephant, you’ll love Language Intelligence.
Earlier today, Missouri U.S. Senate candidate Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) claimed that “legitimate rape” does not often lead to pregnancy because ?the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.? This is not the first time the biologically challenged senate candidate tried to minimize the impact of rape. Last year, Akin joined with GOP vice presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) as two of the original co-sponsors of the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” a bill which, among other things, introduced the country to the bizarre term “forcible rape.”
Federal law prevents federal Medicaid funds and similar programs from paying for abortions. Yet the law also contains an exception for women who are raped. The bill Akin and Ryan cosponsored would have narrowed this exception, providing that only pregnancies arising from “forcible rape” may be terminated. Because the primary target of Akin and Ryan’s effort are Medicaid recipients — patients who are unlikely to be able to afford an abortion absent Medicaid funding — the likely impact of this bill would have been forcing many rape survivors to carry their rapist’s baby to term. Michelle Goldberg explains who Akin and Ryan would likely target:
Under H.R. 3, only victims of ?forcible rape? would qualify for federally funded abortions. Victims of statutory rape?say, a 13-year-old girl impregnated by a 30-year-old man?would be on their own. So would victims of incest if they?re over 18. And while ?forcible rape? isn?t defined in the criminal code, the addition of the adjective seems certain to exclude acts of rape that don?t involve overt violence?say, cases where a woman is drugged or has a limited mental capacity. ?It?s basically putting more restrictions on what was defined historically as rape,? says Keenan.
Although a version of this bill passed the GOP-controlled House, the “forcible rape” language was eventually removed due to widespread public outcry. Paul Ryan, however, believes that the “forcible rape” language does not actually go far enough to force women to carry their rapist’s baby. Ryan believes that abortion should be illegal in all cases except for “cases in which a doctor deems an abortion necessary to save the mother’s life.” So rape survivors are out of luck.
And, of course, as we learned today, Akin isn’t even sure that “legitimate” rape survivors can get pregnant in the first place.
Mohammed MossadeghIt is impossible to understand modern American history, modern American foreign policy, anti-American anger throughout the Middle East and the developing nations, and the roots of anti-American terrorism, without understanding what happened on this date in 1953. Any understanding of modern Iran has to begin with an understanding of what happened on this date. For on August 19, 1953, the little known and not even six-year-old Central Intelligence Agency overthrew the democratically elected prime minister of Iran, installed a new prime minister of its own choosing, and restored to the throne a recently self-exiled Shah. It wouldn't be long before the Shah seized total local control of his government and established the brutal SAVAK, which over the next decades tortured and killed thousands, to crush all opposition.
Mohammed Mossadegh is not widely remembered in this country, but he was Time Magazine's Man Of The Year for 1951. The first Iranian to receive an advanced education from a European university, and a man widely renowned for his blunt honesty and impeccable integrity, Mossadegh was brilliant and disturbingly passionate, capable of verbally eviscerating opponents in political or juridical debates, and just as easily capable of breaking down crying while giving a speech, or even passing out while in the middle of tense negotiations. His understanding of national and international law became legendary. He often conducted official business while lying in bed.
Iran's monarchy had had a long, turbulent history, with the corrupt and incompetent Qajar regime being forced to democratize by the 1906-1911 Constitutional Revolution, but that effectively came to an end when the Qajars were toppled in the early 1920s by a British-backed military officer named Reza Khan. In 1925, Reza Khan became Reza Shah Pahlavi, and soon turned the Iranian parliament, or Majlis, into a rubberstamp. Most people don't understand this, but the final Shah of Iran was not part of an ancient royal family, rather he was heir to a dynasty that had lasted exactly two generations, himself included.
(Continue reading below the fold.)
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Former Obama economic adviser Austan Goolsbee asserted on Sunday that Republicans "would classify Mitt Romney's horse as a small business" if they thought it would help them convince Americans that taxes shouldn't be raised on the wealthy.
During an ABC News discussion about the federal deficit, The Wall Street Journal's Kimberly Strassel argued that the 3 percent of small businesses that would be impacted by ending the Bush-era tax cuts for the richest Americans were actually the "most important and productive business generators in the country."
"Republicans talk about small businesses like you want them to think about mom-and-pops [shops]," Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) explained, adding that Republicans would classify Bain Capital -- the firm presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney founded -- as a small business.
"They would classify Mitt Romney's horse as a small business," Goolsbee interrupted.
"It's true!" Van Hollen agreed. "Hedge fund owners, Fortune 100 companies all come under this rubric of small business."
Earlier this month, Ann Romney?s dressage horse, Rafalca, competed in the 2012 London Olympics.
In 2010, the Romneys took more tax deductions on their horses than most Americans earn in a year. According to The New York Times, the couple ?declared a loss of $77,000 on their 2010 tax returns for the share in the care and feeding of Rafalca.?
Census Bureau statistics show that the mean yearly per capita income for individuals in the U.S. between 2006 and 2010 was $27,334.
Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan suggested on Friday that Romney's background was "starting small businesses."
Sunday Afternoon News Roundup The rich are simply getting richer. When you look at data from 1979 through 2007 the vast majority of the income gains are reaped by the top. The combination of tax cuts, which go mostly to the rich, and the weakness of labor unions which used to be able to demand
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