Tens of thousands of protesters returned Friday to Tahrir Square, the site of demonstrations that led to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak two weeks ago, to keep up the pressure on Egypt’s military-led transitional government.
But by early Saturday, the military made it clear there would be limits to further dissent as soldiers and plainclothes security officers moved into the square, beating protesters and tearing down their tents, witnesses said.
In a day that had begun with equal parts carnival and anti-government demonstration, protesters’ called for the quick cancellation of the Emergency Law, which for three decades has allowed detentions without trial, and the resignation of Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq, a former air force general appointed by Mr. Mubarak days before he stepped down.
But after night fell, the protest transformed into a tense standoff between protesters and the military, whose neutrality during the uprising, and unwillingness to fire on the protesters, had turned them into popular heroes.
As per The Washington Post, there were more than 180,000 Private Contractors in Iraq in August 2007
4,439 US troops have died
32,033 troops have been wounded, 20% of which are serious brain or spinal injuries.
30% of US troops develop serious mental health problems within 3 to 4 months of returning home
147 Journalists have died in Iraq (14 of them by US Forces)
9,830 Iraqi soldiers and police officers have died
A UN issued report dated Sept 20, 2006 stating that Iraqi civilian casualties have been significantly under-reported. Casualties are reported at 50,000 to over 100,000, but may be much higher. Some informed estimates place Iraqi civilian casualties at over 600,000.
The unemployment rate in Iraq is between 27% to 60%
In 2007, 28% of Iraqi Children were suffering from Chronic Malnutrition (as per CNN)
Average Daily Hours Baghdad Homes Have Electricity - 5.6 in May 2007. Pre-War Daily Hours Baghdad Homes Have Electricity - 16 to 24
82% Iraqis are “strongly opposed” to presence of coalition troops
I repeat my former Advice, that in all your Amours you should prefer old Women to young ones. You call this a Paradox, and demand my Reasons. They are these:
1. Because as they have more Knowledge of the World and their Minds are better stor’d with Observations, their Conversation is more improving and more lastingly agreable.
2. Because when Women cease to be handsome, they study to be good. To maintain their Influence over Men, they supply the Diminution of Beauty by an Augmentation of Utility. They learn to do a 1000 Services small and great, and are the most tender and useful of all Friends when you are sick. Thus they continue amiable. And hence there is hardly such a thing to be found as an old Woman who is not a good Woman.
3. Because there is no hazard of Children, which irregularly produc’d may be attended with much Inconvenience.
4. Because thro’ more Experience, they are more prudent and discreet in conducting an Intrigue to prevent Suspicion. The Commerce with them is therefore safer with regard to your Reputation. And with regard to theirs, if the Affair should happen to be known, considerate People might be rather inclin’d to excuse an old Woman who would kindly take care of a young Man, form his Manners by her good Counsels, and prevent his ruining his Health and Fortune among mercenary Prostitutes.
5. Because in every Animal that walks upright, the Deficiency of the Fluids that fill the Muscles appears first in the highest Part: The Face first grows lank and wrinkled; then the Neck; then the Breast and Arms; the lower Parts continuing to the last as plump as ever: So that covering all above with a Basket, and regarding only what is below the Girdle, it is impossible of two Women to know an old from a young one. And as in the dark all Cats are grey, the Pleasure of corporal Enjoyment with an old Woman is at least equal, and frequently superior, every Knack being by Practice capable of Improvement.
6. Because the Sin is less. The debauching a Virgin may be her Ruin, and make her for Life unhappy.
7. Because the Compunction is less. The having made a young Girl miserable may give you frequent bitter Reflections; none of which can attend the making an old Woman happy.
Here’s an easy way to “protest” with the people in Madison and elsewhere: Boycott the fuck out of all these companies. IF there is something made by one of these companies you cannot live without, you shouldn’t be thinking about protests, anyway. (Think about delicious anus-burgers harvested by ill-paid, ill-treated illegal migrant labor in the slaughterhouses of the Midwest.)
Wisconsin Realtors Koch Industries (obvs.) Wal-Mart Tavern League of Wisconsin AT&T Brawny paper towels Dixie cups Georgia-Pacific lumber Stainmaster carpet Lycra
Also quit buying gasoline and using natural gas; the Kochs own pipelines everywhere. Go solar and get a Nissan Volt, or better yet, don’t have a car at all and rent one (a Hybrid or EV) for road trips. Give a hoot.
Hey, leftists and liberals and Democrats, remember a couple of years ago how super-excited you were about Barack Obama, the Chicago community organizer? Nobody really expected unicorns and a fair tax burden for the richest of the rich, but we were enthusiastic, right? Barack Obama has remained completely invisible during the intense labor battles raging in Wisconsin and Indiana and Ohio and even Tennessee. We sort of remember being at the Democratic convention and lots of Democratic presidential debates over the long 2007-2008 campaign, and it sure seems like labor played a decisive role in Obama getting the nomination and then winning the presidency. But now, even the head of the AFL-CIO is relegated to a backroom handshake with Joe Biden, because multi-millionaire golfer “centrist” Barack Obama doesn’t want to dirty his hands with the actual lives of the 90% of the country not living large. Rich people protect rich people, it’s that simple.
Yeah, because it’s all about strengthening his position leading in ’12, and then maybe he’ll show some interest in working people and labor and the way corporations and the richest people barely pay any taxes in this country, and who knows, maybe then he’ll care about the gazillions that go to the Pentagon — for the sole purpose of enriching defense contractor corporations, unless you consider “maiming and killing poor people with no other job prospects” or “losing gigantic wars all over the world” to be intentional.
You know, Barry, you are president right now. It’s one thing for you to be a clueless spectator on something like Egypt or Libya, but it’s very much another thing to be out to lunch on midwestern labor battles. If you stood for anything, you could get a hundred thousand people to join the Madison protests. You could put Scott Walker in jail for planning to hire thug violence against legal protests, the same way your betters protected the protesters during the Civil Rights Movement.
But, nah, there’s no way to get those million-dollar speaking engagements and free corporate jets and exclusive golf vacations and seven-figure book deals year after year if you go all liberal, right?
A bill introduced in the Minnesota Legislature on Thursday would make it legal for farmers to grow medical marijuana and sell it to dispensaries in states where marijuana can be legally used for medicinal purposes. The Medical Marijuana Production and Export Act would direct the state government to develop a strict licensing plan for the potential grower and cites a positive economic benefit for the state’s agricultural sector.
Currently, sixteen states have legalized medical marijuana including Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.
The bill (HF662) would allow Minnesota farmers to grow and export medical marijuana to those states.
According to the National Journal’s new ideological rankings of Congress members, released this afternoon, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) — who once characterized himself as an independent “maverick” — has repositioned himself so far to the right that he is now tied with Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX) and John Barrasso (R-WY) as the Senate’s most conservative member. McCain earned an 89.7 out of 100, which even beat out the reliable right wingers like Sens. Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Jeff Sessions (R-AL). McCain’s new radical-right stance contrasts heavily with preceding years, when he was regularly ranked around the 45th most conservative member of the Senate.
In a statement, Wray said he spent time overnight thinking about the comments Walker made during a 20-minute conversation with a Buffalo, N.Y., blogger who posed as a major Republican donor during the call.
The blogger, Ian Murphy, suggested the idea of placing troublemakers amid the crowd of protesters.
Walker responded: “The only problem with that - because we thought about that. The problem with - my only gut reaction to that would be, right now the lawmakers I’ve talked to have just completely had it with them. The public is not really fond of this.”
Wray said he was disturbed that Walker thought about planting troublemakers among peaceful protesters.
“I would like to hear more of an explanation from Governor Walker as to what exactly was being considered, and to what degree it was discussed by his cabinet members. I find it very unsettling and troubling that anyone would consider creating safety risks for our citizens and law enforcement officers,” the chief said.
“Our department works hard dialoging with those who are exercising their First Amendment right, those from both sides of the issue, to make sure we are doing everything we can to ensure they can demonstrate safely. I am concerned that anyone would try to undermine these relationships. I have a responsibility to the community, and to the men and women of this department - who are working long hours protecting and serving this community – to find out more about what was being considered by state leaders.”
- MARYLAND: Maryland’s same-sex marriage legislation passed a second reading this afternoon in a vote of 25-22, paving the way for final approval later this week.
- HAWAII: Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie “signed same-sex civil unions into law Wednesday, calling it ‘a triumph for everyone’ that gay and lesbian couples will have the same state rights as married partners.” Civil Unions will begin on January 1, 2012.
- MONTANA: The Montana House passed a measure that would prohibit local governments from enacting policies seek that protects residents from real or perceived discrimination based on their sexual orientation and gender, while the Montana Senate “voted Wednesday to remove an obsolete state law that criminalized gay sex.” “The Senate endorsed the bill 41-9 with 19 of 28 Senate Republicans supporting the measure. It has one more usually procedural vote before it goes to the House.”
- TENNESSEE: A proposed bill in the Tennessee Legislature “wants to spell out how schools can introduce sexuality – and only heterosexuality – to your child.” The bill, known as House Bill 229 or Senate Bill 49, says in part: “No public elementary or middle school shall provide any instruction or material that discusses sexual orientation other than heterosexuality.”
- IOWA: House File 330 would prohibit county recorders from issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples and “the Iowa Supreme Court would be unable to rule on the issue.” A spokesman for Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller said the bill is unquestionably unconstitutional.
- NORTH CAROLINA: A proposed amendment would “ban any recognition of any ‘domestic legal union’ other than a marriage between an opposite-sex couple. If approved by the legislature, the amendment would appear on the November 2012 ballot. Three-fifths of both the House and Senate must approve the amendment before it can appear on the ballot; the governor has no veto authority on amendments.”
The U.S. Army illegally ordered a team of soldiers specializing in “psychological operations” to manipulate visiting American senators into providing more troops and funding for the war, Rolling Stone has learned – and when an officer tried to stop the operation, he was railroaded by military investigators.
The orders came from the command of Lt. Gen. William Caldwell, a three-star general in charge of training Afghan troops – the linchpin of U.S. strategy in the war. Over a four-month period last year, a military cell devoted to what is known as “information operations” at Camp Eggers in Kabul was repeatedly pressured to target visiting senators and other VIPs who met with Caldwell. When the unit resisted the order, arguing that it violated U.S. laws prohibiting the use of propaganda against American citizens, it was subjected to a campaign of retaliation.
Congressional delegations – known in military jargon as CODELs – are no strangers to spin. U.S. lawmakers routinely take trips to the frontlines in Iraq and Afghanistan, where they receive carefully orchestrated briefings and visit local markets before posing for souvenir photos in helmets and flak jackets. Informally, the trips are a way for generals to lobby congressmen and provide first-hand updates on the war. But what Caldwell was looking for was more than the usual background briefings on senators. According to Holmes, the general wanted the IO team to provide a “deeper analysis of pressure points we could use to leverage the delegation for more funds.” The general’s chief of staff also asked Holmes how Caldwell could secretly manipulate the U.S. lawmakers without their knowledge. “How do we get these guys to give us more people?” he demanded. “What do I have to plant inside their heads?”
Incredible. I’m at a loss. Click through for the full article.
"Quite frankly, the science that I’m looking at says there is no [problem]," LePage said. "There hasn’t been any science that identifies that there is a problem."
LePage then added: “The only thing that I’ve heard is if you take a plastic bottle and put it in the microwave and you heat it up, it gives off a chemical similar to estrogen. So the worst case is some women may have little beards.”
Someday our descendants will get around solely by hover-monorail and electric car, and it will blow their cybernetically-enhanced minds that there ever lived a race backward enough to huff automobile exhaust for an hour a day during its collective commute.
Until then, we have statistics like these, derived from a meta-study that drew data from 36 other papers: Air pollution from auto exhaust triggers a greater proportion of all heart attacks (7.4 percent) than physical exertion (6.2 percent), drinking alcohol or coffee (5 percent), exposure to air pollution in general (4.8 percent), negative emotions (3.9 percent), anger (3.1 percent), a heavy meal (2.7 percent), positive emotions (2.4 percent), sex (2.2 percent), or cocaine (<1 percent).
[C]yclists are in greatest danger because they are more heavily exposed to pollution and are subjecting themselves to another major heart attack trigger, exercise.
Dobson: We’re going to talk about Planned Parenthood today which has been in the news recently in scandals that reveal just how evil and how sinister this organization really is.
Santorum: They have been pushing their agenda for close to a hundred years. I mean, it goes all the way back to Margaret Sanger and her views on eugenics, of culling the race from inferiors, that started Planned Parenthood. This was a movement to try to purify the race and she was for abortion and sterilization and things to get to her aim of a eugenics movement in this country and it was, unfortunately, widely accepted in the early part of the last century. That, with what happened in Nazi Germany which, by the way, took a lot of their eugenics ideas from Margaret Sanger and from the American eugenics movement and applied them to the Jews and other quote “undesirables” in Nazi Germany. But Planned Parenthood is the offshoot, is the progeny of Sanger and this movement and it continues today as they set up their clinics and as they try to … again, if you look the statistics, target the minority community, the African American community where the abortion rates are much, much higher. This is no accident.
“Several years ago, Valvoline Motor Oil aired a television commercial that featured a baby in utero driving a car and shifting gears, complete with NASCAR sound effects. Once popular culture adopts a particular notion or principle, it is almost impossible to roll it back.”—
Yeah, as NASCAR/VALVOLINE goes (and this was obviously pro-life statement, this advertisement, during nascar), so goes the country.
Barack Obama, the US president, has said the violent crackdown in Libya violated international norms and that he had ordered his national security team to prepare the full range of options for dealing with the crisis.
"I have also asked my administration to prepare the full range of options that we may have to respond to this crisis," Obama said in his first televised comments on the Libya crisis on Wednesday.
The US president said he would send Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Geneva for a meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council at the weekend and for talks with allied foreign ministers.
During the citizenship interview, applicants are asked a randomly selected 10 questions from the test and must answer six correctly. In addition to the questions, there is a reading and writing test for English proficiency.
My immigration lawyer accompanied me to my interview. In the security line, I told her I was bothered by Question 16: Who makes the federal laws?
Each of the three possible answers, it seemed, was incomplete. The official answers were: “Congress”; “Senate and House (of representatives)”; “(U.S. or national) legislature.” I’m not a lawyer but even Canadians watched Schoolhouse Rock. Where, I wondered, was the president, whose signature is what makes a bill into a law?
My lawyer sighed, she agreed. But: “If you get asked that question, just give the official answer,” she said. I didn’t get that question.
I also wasn’t asked Question 1: “What is the supreme law of the land?”
The official answer: “the Constitution.” A friend and legal scholar was aghast. That answer, he said, is “no more than one-third correct.” He’s right.
Article VI, clause 2 in the Constitution, known as the Supremacy Clause, explicitly says that three things—the Constitution, federal laws and treaties—together “shall be the supreme law of the land.”
Question 96 asks: Why does the flag have 13 stripes? The official answer: “because there were 13 original colonies.” In fact, the flag has 13 stripes for the 13 original states.
Georgia State Rep. Bobby Franklin—who last year proposed making rape and domestic violence “victims” into “accusers”—has introduced a 10-page bill that would criminalize miscarriages and make abortion in Georgia completely illegal. Both miscarriages and abortions would be potentially punishable by death: any “prenatal murder” in the words of the bill, including “human involvement” in a miscarriage, would be a felony and carry a penalty of life in prison or death. Basically, it’s everything an “pro-life” activist could want aside from making all women who’ve had abortions wear big red “A”s on their chests.
I doubt that a bill that makes a legal medical procedure liable for the death penalty will pass. The bill, however, shows an astonishing lack of concern for women’s health and well-being. Under Rep. Franklin’s bill, HB 1, women who miscarry could become felons if they cannot prove that there was “no human involvement whatsoever in the causation” of their miscarriage. There is no clarification of what “human involvement” means, and this is hugely problematic as medical doctors do not know exactly what causes miscarriages. Miscarriages are estimated to terminate up to a quarter of all pregnancies and the Mayo Clinic says that “the actual number is probably much higher because many miscarriages occur so early in pregnancy that a woman doesn’t even know she’s pregnant. Most miscarriages occur because the fetus isn’t developing normally.”
Holding women criminally liable for a totally natural, common biological process is cruel and non-sensical. Even more ridiculous, the bill holds women responsible for protecting their fetuses from “the moment of conception,” despite the fact that pregnancy tests aren’t accurate until at least 3 weeks after conception. Unless Franklin (who is not a health professional) invents a revolutionary intrauterine conception alarm system, it’s unclear how exactly the state of Georgia would enforce that rule other than holding all possibly-pregnant women under lock and key.
But if the transcript of the conversation is unexceptional, the fact of it is lethal. The state’s Democratic senators can’t get Walker on the phone, but someone can call the governor’s front desk, identify themselves as David Koch, and then speak with both the governor and his chief of staff? That’s where you see the access and power that major corporations and wealthy contributors will have in a Walker administration, and why so many in Wisconsin are reluctant to see the only major interest group representing workers taken out of the game.
The critique many conservatives have made of public-sector unions is that they both negotiate with and fund politicians. It’s a conflict of interest. Well, so too do corporations, and wealthy individuals. That’s why Murphy — posing as Koch — was able to get through to Walker so quickly. And it shows what Walker is really interested in here: He is not opposed, in principle, to powerful interest groups having the ear of the politicians they depend on, and who depend on them. He just wants those interest groups to be the conservative interest groups that fund him, and that he depends on.
The Obama administration said Wednesday that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional and the Justice Department will no longer support it. The Defense of Marriage Act is a federal law defining marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman.
Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to House Speaker John Boehner stating, “Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act … as applied to same-sex couples who are legally married under state law, violates the equal protection component of the Fifth Amendment.”
"The President and I have concluded that classifications based on sexual orientation warrant heightened scrutiny and that, as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law, Section 3 of DOMA is unconstitutional," Holder wrote.
According to the letter, President Obama made his decision after he reviewed two cases in federal appeals courts and found them to be in violation of the Constitution. In light of a “documented history of discrimination,” among other factors, Obama concluded that discriminatory treatment based on sexual orientation should be “subject to a heightened standard of scrutiny,” which the Defense of Marriage Act does not meet.
A 25-cent increase in Twin Cities bus and rail fares is a potential solution to expected cuts in transit funding.
The Metropolitan Council is expected to talk about the possibility of increasing fares — already among the highest in the nation — in discussing its budget with legislators Wednesday.
“It’s being actively considered along with other options,” Metro Transit general manager Brian Lamb said Tuesday.
Gov. Mark Dayton raised the prospect of increasing fares for the first time since 2008 in his budget proposal, saying the hike may be needed to avoid serious cuts in service. Lending momentum to the idea are key Republican legislators who are calling for cuts in transit funding.x
Given the rise in gasoline prices for motorists, “expecting …to pay another 25 cents a ride doesn’t seem an unreasonable idea to ponder,” said Rep. Michael Beard, R-Shakopee, chairman of the House Transportation Policy and Finance Committee.
“Personally, Roosevelt was not worried about assassination. If a bullet came from behind, he could do nothing about it, and would “go down into the darkness,” that being his fatalistic image of death. If the attack was frontal, as on McKinley, he had confidence in the abnormal speed of his reflexes, and the power of his 185-pound body. Last winter, in Colorado, he had leaped off his horse into a pack of hounds, kicked them aside, and knife a cougar to death.”—Edmund Morris (Theodore Rex)
Life might be okay right now, but what would you do if you were down to your last $1,000 and out of a job? Spent is a game that challenges you to try and survive as one of the living poor.
If you need a reason to be depressed today, Spent is a great way to get there. You will live through a month of credit card debt, disappointing children you didn’t know you had, experiencing the death of loved ones and fixing your crappy used car. The upside, however, is you’ll learn a lot about making due with what you’ve got, the tough decisions you’ll have to make when you don’t have a decent income, and what it’s like when things are nearly as bad as they can get.