Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Gee, Baby Ain't I Good To You

Lavay Smith and Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Tarnished Angel

Puss N Boots

Monday, November 23, 2015

They are performing again

But only on a limited basis. If you get a chance to see and hear The Trishas grab it. And if you are lucky they might do "Dusty Shoes"

Bravery redefined

And intrepid reporter Tom Tomorrow shows us how the disreputable side of American politics does it.

No real difference

From the pen of Steve Benson

Which came first?

The chicken factories or the chickenshit. If you listen to the people responsible for the spread of industrial chicken production on the Delmarva peninsula, you might well believe the chickenshit came first. Regardless of the timing, it is there now along with all the problems that follow it.
The air smells bad now, he said, and the environment feels soiled. The gruff electrician who built his house in rural Somerset County in 1983 remembers being able to trap muskrats whenever he wanted. Today, he said, they’re all gone — and last year he saw a rat in the area for the first time. The population of flies has exploded, Glasgow said. He can leave five flytraps out in his garage, and they’ll be full in two days or less.

The fouling of the Delmarva, Glasgow and other residents say, can be attributed to the rapid proliferation of chicken CAFOs — “concentrated animal feeding operations” — which critics refer to as factory farms. Tens of thousands of chickens live in close quarters in these enclosed poultry houses, which are usually run by national producers such as Tyson and Perdue.

Industry representatives say that there are around 4,600 poultry houses currently operating on the Delmarva. Residents and researchers are calling for a state moratorium on the construction of new houses as another 200 are on track to be opened by the end of 2015. These operations use industrial-sized fans to pull air out of chicken houses, raising concerns over whether locals are being exposed to airborne toxins, and about the kinds of waste that are being drained into the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

“They keep saying there’s no environmental impact,” Glasgow said in response to industry representatives who maintain that the chicken houses are more environmentally friendly than ever. “But there is.”

“We want to be good neighbors,” said Bill Satterfield, the executive director of Delmarva Poultry Industry, Inc., a trade association that represents poultry producers on the peninsula. He added that people who live in agricultural areas need to understand what it means to live near farms.

Lisa Inzerillo of Princess Anne grew up around her grandparents’ farm in Sommerset County and lives on land that’s been in her family for more than four centuries. She knows that the Delmarva has always been poultry country. Her house, however, is also near a newly built chicken CAFO that she said her grandparents wouldn’t recognize.

“I’m not at all against poultry,” she said. “But this is industrial-sized farming. This does not belong in our neighborhood.”
And the real chicken shit?
The letter stated that in 2013 at least 215,349 tons of poultry waste — containing 5 million pounds of phosphorous, which fuels toxic algal blooms in high concentrations — was moved off chicken farms in the area. Much of it ended up on agricultural land in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
So it has gone from small scale farms to industrial size facilities and it is unlikely that any of the factory owners can pay to control pollution. (see John Oliver). As long as the chickens keep the facilities from being labeled industrial, the quality of life in a once beautiful area will be crucified on a cross of chickenshit.

Their right to devastate the landscape

For their personal fun and profit. Like those assholes who love to go ripping through any environment that is not their front lawn in their four wheelers, hobby miners are claiming a right by law to devastate stream beds throughout the west.
The General Mining Law of 1872 promised Americans who went west that whatever gold or other precious minerals they found would be theirs for the keeping — the main driver of the California Gold Rush that fueled the nation’s great westward expansion.

Almost 150 years later, gold miners in the west, who now prospect mostly as a hobby, are invoking the same law to sue states over moratoriums on the use of suction dredge mining equipment.

Driven by environmental concerns that these motorized vacuums disrupt salmon habitat and affect water quality, California banned the practice in 2009. Oregon will do the same starting Jan. 1, 2016.

Miners are suing both states, arguing that their moratoriums on suction dredges to sift through gravel for specks of gold violate the federal mining law.

“It alleges that the state lacks power to prohibit mining on federal lands,” said James Buchal, a Portland, Oregon, lawyer who represents a consortium of gold miners in the lawsuits.

Miners scored a victory in California earlier this year when lower courts ruled in their favor, sending the case to the state Supreme Court, which has agreed to hear it.

“Essentially, miners are asserting they have a constitutional right to mine anywhere they want, which is ridiculous,” said Nick Cady, legal director of Cascadia Wildlands, a non-profit conservation group based in Eugene, Oregon. “This hobby mining group of a few hundred people are decimating salmon habitat.”

Environmentalists also argue that dredging raises the level of mercury in the water — some of it naturally occurring and some left over from more than a century of mining.

“This is about protecting salmon habitat and water quality,” said Forrest English, director of Rogue Riverkeeper, an Oregon non-profit that works to restore and protect water quality. “There are other places to mine. You don’t need to mine for gold in the stream bed … This is about the state being able to protect resources the state depends on. It’s public water.”
I can easily imagine Scalito & Thomas & Kennedy hobbylobbying this handful of destructive people for some newly twisted legal reason. I hope President Sanders gets to replace one or more of them before they can.

Republicans Lies

And John Oliver explains how shitty those lies are.

These stores will abuse their workers on Thanksgiving

Sunday, November 22, 2015

20 years ago Iris DeMent understood

"Wasteland Of The Free" by Iris DeMent from her 1996 album The Way I Should rips into the same problems we have today.

A Study in Yellow

From the pen of Brian McFadden

click pic to big

Why go to all the trouble

Posing as a Syrian refugee is not the easiest nor the safest way to travel to another country id you are a DAESH thug intent on doing something bad. Aside from the terrible travel conditions, there is no certainty you will actually get to your destination. There are much easier and faster ways to get there.
Despite a barrage of Republican charges that President Barack Obama is endangering the homeland by welcoming 10,000 Syrian refugees into the United States, experts say that is hardly the easiest route for Islamic State terrorists to slip into the country.

Refugees seeking permanent resettlement must undergo extensive interviews and security checks, while waiting from 18 months to three years to learn their fate.

In contrast, during the decade ending on Dec. 31, 2014, the State Department granted temporary visas for 2 million visitors from 10 countries that have been breeding grounds for Islamic extremism, including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Syria, a McClatchy analysis found. The wait for a visa is usually weeks or a few months.

The 39-nation Visa Waiver Program offers another option for the Islamic State. It permits people holding European passports – including all of the Islamic State-linked assailants who died in or were apprehended after last week’s mass slayings in Paris – to enter the United States for up to 90 days without a visa, so long as their names aren’t on a terrorism watch list. Reports to date indicate that counterterrorism authorities in France and Belgium had suspicions about only three of more than a dozen operatives.
Probably the fastest way is through Saudi Arabia where DAESH thugs can have their way smoothed by one of their rich sponsors and be on a 747 winging their way to Texas to buy the necessary weaponry before you can say 'Ted Cruz Blows Goats'. And they keep their feet dry all the way.

Island People don't want military bases

Okinawa has been fighting the relocation of the Marine airbase since it was first proposed despite heavy pressure from Toyyo and Washington for the move.
She’s spent more than half her life fighting a proposal to place new Marine air strips near the village where she grew up on the southern Japanese island of Okinawa. Her side has thwarted the plan year after year.

But the day when Marine planes land near her may be inching closer, with Tokyo and Washington insisting that the runways must be built. They’d expand a base on the front lines of a standoff where traditional U.S. allies are guarding against China’s growing military might in the South and East China seas.

The military urgency behind the plan, however, crashes against a perennial stalemate over what to do with the dense and unpopular concentration of Marine forces the American military has kept on Okinawa since World War II.

“We don’t need bases that generate wars. I want to start the peace from Okinawa,” Shimabukuro said.

Both countries want to close Futenma, but the only solution they’ve found to shut the base while retaining Marine combat power in the western Pacific centers on a plan to lay two runways in the coral-filled waters of Oura Bay.

That agreement sounds ideal in world capitals.

It would ease tension in the city around Futenma and allow the governments to build on land that’s already used by the Marines at an infantry base called Camp Schwab. That base sits next to Henoko village, which has a reputation as the most pro-military community on Okinawa.

But it’s a nonstarter on Okinawa, where daily protests outside Camp Schwab’s gates are reminders that local residents and international activists have been willing to put their bodies on the line to protect the bay from a construction that would partially fill it.

“We never give up,” said Ooshiro Satoru, an Okinawa labor union leader who joined a protest outside of Camp Schwab on its 383rd consecutive day last summer on the eve of a typhoon’s expected landfall.

Okinawa voters made their preferences clear last year when they elected a wild-card governor in Takeshi Onaga to upend the already long-delayed pact.
And out in the Pacific, residents of Guam are upset by plans to greatly expand the Marine presence on the islands of Guam, Tinian and Pagan.
This U.S. territory in the Western Pacific, long a way station for passing jets and submarines, is about to become a hub for a force of 4,800 Marines who’ll be charged with readying for war and disasters in East Asia.

The trouble is the Pentagon has not yet persuaded two nearby islands to accept a proposal that would give the Marines a space to train during their Pacific patrols. And some are suggesting, subtly, that it may be difficult to station so many military service members on Guam if they cannot train nearby.

On one island, Tinian, a Marine plan to practice ground maneuvers is setting off fears that the sounds of mortars and rocket blasts will quash a budding Chinese-backed tourism-casino industry. The companies behind the casinos have been hinting they’d pull out if the Marine proposal becomes a reality.

On the other, Pagan, a proposal to make a massive international military training zone on an island known for its namesake volcano is hitting a nerve among people who dream of returning to it three decades after an eruption forced their evacuation.

Both islands are governed by the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, a separate U.S. territory that revealed its concerns when it hired an attorney known for fighting Pentagon plans in the Pacific.

“Having a place to fire cannons and practice obviously is essential, but this just isn’t the right place,” said Nick Yost, the San Francisco attorney hired by the commonwealth...

Japan, which hosts most of the troops who would be sent to Guam, is paying for more than a third of the estimated $8.7 billion cost of creating the new Marine facilities. Japan likely would participate in joint exercises if the training grounds are built, and Marines on Guam would be expected to respond to a disaster in Japan, 1,400 miles to the west.
A real problem for the military. When they aren't blowing up things for real, where can they get real practice in blowing things up.

Strange choices

Saturday, November 21, 2015

A bit of Old Appalachia

Sung by Diane Jones from her Museum Of Appalachia Recordings, a tune by the name of "Satan".

The Impossible We No Longer Do

From the pen of Tom Toles

In a world ruled by vicious men

It can be next to impossible to be a woman, even when you do what the bastards want. Azadeh Moaveni details the lives of three women who lived under DAESH before fleeing to Turkey.
Dua had only been working for two months with the Khansaa Brigade, the all-female morality police of the Islamic State, when her friends were brought to the station to be whipped.

The police had hauled in two women she had known since childhood, a mother and her teenage daughter, both distraught. Their abayas, flowing black robes, had been deemed too form-fitting.

When the mother saw Dua, she rushed over and begged her to intercede. The room felt stuffy as Dua weighed what to do.

“Their abayas really were very tight. I told her it was their own fault; they had come out wearing the wrong thing,” she said. “They were unhappy with that.”

Dua sat back down and watched as the other officers took the women into a back room to be whipped. When they removed their face-concealing niqabs, her friends were also found to be wearing makeup. It was 20 lashes for the abaya offense, five for the makeup, and another five for not being meek enough when detained.

Their cries began ringing out, and Dua stared hard at the ceiling, a lump building in her throat.

In the short time since she had joined the Khansaa Brigade in her hometown, Raqqa, in northern Syria, the morality force had grown more harsh. Mandatory abayas and niqabs were still new for many women in the weeks after the jihadists of the Islamic State had purged the city of competing militants and taken over. At first, the brigade was told to give the community a chance to adapt, and clothing offenses brought small fines.

After too many young women became repeat offenders, however, paying the fines without changing their behavior, the soft approach was out. Now it was whipping — and now it was her friends being punished.

The mother and daughter came to Dua’s parents’ house afterward, furious with her and venting their anger at the Islamic State.

“They said they hated it and wished it had never come to Raqqa,” Dua said. She pleaded with them, explaining that as a young and new member of the Khansaa Brigade, there was nothing she could have done.

But a lifelong friendship, with shared holiday gatherings and birthday parties, was suddenly broken. “After that day, they hated me, too,” she said. “They never came to our house again.”

Dua’s second cousin Aws also worked for the brigade. Not long after Dua’s friends were whipped, Aws saw fighters brutally lashing a man in Muhammad Square. The man, about 70, frail and with white hair, had been heard cursing God. As a crowd gathered, the fighters dragged him into the public square and whipped him after he fell to his knees.

“He cried the whole time,” Aws said. “It was lucky for him that he had cursed Allah, because Allah shows mercy. If he’d cursed the Prophet, they would have killed him.”
The three women in this article were fortunate to have escaped but now they are refugees until somewhere in the future one of the many groups fighting in Syria wins. And as we can see with DAESH the winner may not be someone you want to return to.

Working well, as planned

For years now the Republicans have been busy, with the help of their Fox News sous-chef Roger Ailes, stirring hatred and fear into the stew of American politics. In some of the middle America states the flavor of that stew is just what they want.
They worry that immigrants here illegally are gobbling up jobs and benefits. They fear that Islamic State terrorists could sneak across a porous border with Mexico and find their way into the United States. They complain that the U.S. is bowing to political correctness in response to racial tensions and the legalization of gay marriage.

Together, the newest worries lend a sharp new edge to anxiety over wages, jobs and debt.

“We’re going down the tubes and I don’t know if we can recover,” said James Burrack, 77, a farmer in northeastern Iowa who believes illegal immigration poses a major threat to the country’s economy and security. “Just give it all to the Muslims and we can be their subjects.”

Less than 10 weeks before Iowans kick off the presidential nomination with the first-in-the-nation caucuses, interviews with more than 50 Republican voters across the state paint a dark picture of deep discontent with the direction of the country.

This intense and focused anxiety helps explain why the establishment — media and political — has been wrong so often this year when it’s predicted that an inflammatory comment about Mexicans or Muslims would doom a candidate, or that the attacks in Paris would drive voters away from unconventional contenders.

The candidates are reflecting that mood, not leading it...

“We’re willing to pander to anyone as long as it’s not a Christian conservative,” said Mark Tompkins, 73, a U.S. Army veteran and Council Bluffs resident. “Let’s look out for the Muslims,” he added sarcastically. “Let’s cater to spoiled college kids at Columbia.”

Jennifer Fredericksen, 47, who runs a small business in eastern Iowa with her husband, complained about the university’s reaction to the campus protests, which included an email from the school’s police department that urged those who witnessed “incidents of hateful and/or hurtful speech or actions” to call police.

“How can you prevent 35,000 people from saying bad things?” she said of the university. “Is it going to get to the point where we all have to watch every word that we say for fear of offending someone and losing our jobs?”

Fredericksen blames President Barack Obama, accusing him of worsening race relations. “He’s incited it. He doesn’t bother getting on TV when any cops are killed, but in Ferguson before we knew the whole story, he rushed to judgment.”

Worries over national security are aggravating fears about immigration even as the number of undocumented immigrants in the United States has leveled off since the end of the Great Recession.

A Pew Research Center survey this month found more Mexican immigrants returning from the U.S. than migrating here, a finding it attributed to the sluggish U.S. economy and stricter border enforcement. In Iowa, the undocumented population is estimated at 40,000 or less —1.4 percent of the state’s total population.

“We need to close that border,” said Marlene Flanagan, 63, a retired legal assistant from Council Bluffs, who said she fears militants intent on harming the U.S. will be able to slip in through Mexico. “Why would we take any chances with our security?”

She supports Donald Trump’s campaign promise to build a wall. She is enthusiastic about his plans for a “deportation force” to round up some of the estimated 11 million immigrants in the country illegally and send them back to their countries. It’s the sort of thinking that most politicians won’t touch, she said.
These people have been scared shitless by the constant tsunami of lies coming from Fox and their Republican stooges. What chance does the occasional truth have when they have been hearing lies day after day?

Vote for a man who wants the world to end?

Bill Maher looks at the frightening beliefs of our politicians

I knew it!

Friday, November 20, 2015


Emily Barker

An old tradition

That seldom rises to this level of politics, a seat in the Mississippi legislature was decided by drawing straws under the watchful eye of the Governor and Secretary of State.
Sometimes American politics is about ideas, powered by Jeffersons and Adamses and Reagans. Sometimes it is about strategy, with races determined by the chess-match machinations of Axelrods and Roves.

But every once in a while, the fate of governments is determined by a considerably less eminent character, one usually found lurking in back-alley craps games and on the Vegas strip: Lady Luck.

In Mississippi on Friday, luck smiled on a Democratic state representative, Blaine Eaton II, who had been forced, by state law, to draw straws for his seat after his race for re-election ended in a tie. On Friday afternoon, in a short, strange ceremony here presided over by Gov. Phil Bryant and Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann, Mr. Eaton and his Republican challenger, Mark Tullos, each removed a box from a bag. Mr. Eaton opened his box to reveal a long green straw.

And with that, a mathematically improbable tie for the House District 79 seat — each candidate had received exactly 4,589 votes — had been broken, though not by the voters...

Resorting to a game of chance to break an electoral tie is common in many states, and coin tosses are often used to settle smaller local races. But in few instances had the pot as rich as this: If Mr. Tullos had won, his fellow Republicans would have gain a three-fifths supermajority in the State House of Representatives, the threshold required to pass revenue-related bills.

At stake, potentially, was hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue. The three-fifths requirement has allowed the Democratic minority to block Republican tax-cut proposals in the past on the grounds that Mississippi needs the revenue to finance schools and other services. Republicans, who also control the State Senate and governor’s mansion, say the cuts, including a proposal to phase out the state’s corporate franchise tax, will jump-start the economy and promote job growth.
Neither man is happy with the way the race was decided but if their respective parties couldn't fix it properly, given the stakes, then it was probably decided fairly.

Todays Science Lesson

What Betty Says

With all the talk this week about turning away people from the Middle East at the inn, only welcoming Guaranteed® True Christians™, and registering people of other faiths like sex offenders, I decided to re-release this video. I hope it will remind Real Americans® that while the tactics may vary, the ideology of many of our own hews closely to ISIS’s. If not peace, maybe understanding can be found in seeing the things their Caliphate and our “No Separation between Church and State” have in common. For starters? Neither of us listens to a word Jesus ever said! Through a mirror, darkly, indeed! 1 Corinthians 13:12

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Blind Faith in Too Many False Prophets

Keeps Americans from finding their way home to the ideals we embraced some 225 years ago. Ellen McIlwaine sings "Can't Find My Way Home"

Always go to the source

From the pen of Adam Zyglis

Has Diaper Dave pulled on his last adult Pampers?

Saturday will be the day of reckoning in the race for Governor of Louisiana. Aside from the question Why? any one would want to be governor of that sinkhole, it looks like the Republican candidate, Diaper Dave Vitter, has pissed off enough people to go from shoo-in to probable loser.
Republicans and Democrats say they see Mr. Edwards’s wide margin narrowing as the election approaches, as the inexorable pull of Louisiana’s Republican gravity kicks in.

But Mr. Vitter’s bare-knuckle style has already had its costs, which are readily apparent in the aftermath of his primary victory. The battle among Mr. Vitter and two other Republicans in the race — Scott Angelle, a public service commissioner, and Jay Dardenne, the lieutenant governor — grew nastier as the primary neared, with Mr. Vitter accusing his Republican opponents of recklessly squandering public money and the opponents calling Mr. Vitter a liar. After the vote, Mr. Dardenne endorsed Mr. Edwards; Mr. Angelle has stayed conspicuously silent.

Mr. Vitter’s supporters acknowledge the lingering harm of that primary. They talk up his endorsements from business and industry groups but say that support has been overshadowed by the bitter Republican infighting.

“The Republicans just beat the heck out of each other,” said State Representative Lance Harris, a Republican and Vitter supporter. “A lot of the negativism just turned voters off.”

But there are old acrimonies that run deeper, as evident from the split in Mr. Vitter’s support in Jefferson Parish, the suburban bastion of Republicanism just west of New Orleans. The parish is where Mr. Vitter entered politics as a young state legislator not shy about picking fights or leveling charges of ethical failings among his colleagues.

“He repeatedly refers to everybody in the Legislature as being corrupt,” said Daniel R. Martiny, a Jefferson Parish Republican and the majority leader in the State Senate.

Not only has this reputation endangered Mr. Vitter’s bid for governor, but it could also be a problem were he to lose and want to keep his seat in the United States Senate, where he has few close colleagues. With Senate Republicans holding a precarious four-seat majority and next year’s Senate races favoring Democrats, leading Republican strategists in Washington have quietly begun putting out word that they have little appetite to spend money rehabilitating Mr. Vitter’s image when another Republican candidate could hold the seat with little investment.
Politics may be a blood sport leading up to election day but the smart ones who lasted always knew how to mend fences afterwards.

Staring down the barrel of a gun

A gun of their own making
. The establishment Republican Party is facing a disaster in New Hampshire. While expecting Iowa to select a reactionary extremist in their caucus of pig manure fume befuddled voters, New Hampshire is supposed to select the moderate candidate who will eventually overcome the radical upstart. New Hampshire no longer looks like it will follow the script.
The weakness of mainstream candidates in New Hampshire poses a big challenge for the party’s beleaguered establishment. If a candidate acceptable to the party can’t win New Hampshire or Iowa, the G.O.P. will face a bleak choice: undertake the daunting and expensive task of mounting a come-from-behind effort, or grudgingly acquiesce to a candidate it really doesn’t want, like Ted Cruz, but who may be better than someone it can never accept, like Mr. Trump.

The extent of the weakness of the establishment in New Hampshire is a striking departure from recent contests. In the polling data that The Upshot has collected from the last three Republican primaries, no one other than Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and George W. Bush led even a single New Hampshire Republican poll in the year ahead of the contest. Not only did surging conservatives like Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich never lead, but they also didn’t usually come close. After all, this is a state where Jon Huntsman won 17 percent of the vote in 2012...

How is Mr. Trump doing so well? He’s drawing on many moderate and secular voters who haven’t supported the anti-establishment but usually religious candidates who have fared well in Iowa. The same pattern emerges in national polls, which often show Mr. Trump faring best among self-described moderates.

The strength of a populist candidate like Mr. Trump, who opposes free trade and immigration, isn’t without precedent in New Hampshire. In 1992, Pat Buchanan, another anti-trade and anti-immigration candidate, won 38 percent of the vote against the incumbent president, George H.W. Bush. Four years later, Mr. Buchanan actually won the state, narrowly beating the eventual nominee, Bob Dole.

But the G.O.P. establishment then was not in anywhere near the danger it is now. This year, the “outsider” candidates, like Mr. Trump, Mr. Cruz and Ben Carson, possess as much organizational, financial and personal strength as the establishment candidates, or maybe more. This year’s schedule affords the party few opportunities to make a comeback: The contests after Iowa and New Hampshire — the Nevada caucuses, South Carolina and the predominantly Southern states on Super Tuesday — are all relatively favorable to conservatives. This year’s establishment candidates have shown far less strength, by any measure, than Mr. Dole or George H.W. Bush, who had the resources, name recognition and party backing to survive early setbacks.

Mr. Trump is generally polling in the mid-20s in New Hampshire surveys. The large number of moderate, establishment-friendly candidates competing in New Hampshire might split the mainstream vote, preventing any one candidate from consolidating enough support to win.

Many of these candidates have little chance to win the nomination, and some, like Chris Christie and John Kasich, barely register in national polls. But over all, Mr. Christie, Mr. Kasich, Jeb Bush, Mr. Rubio and Carly Fiorina combine for nearly 40 percent of the vote in New Hampshire polls, compared with around 25 percent in national surveys. There’s no guarantee that these voters, if their favorite exited, would coalesce behind any one of the other candidates in that group, but surely the establishment would be in a better position if there were not so many viable candidates competing for support in New Hampshire. Right now, there’s no good reason for any of them to leave.
A win by a non-establishment candidate would be a blow to the party plans. And right now it looks like the GOP establishment will have to deal with their worst nightmare, a rich buffoon who will say anything to gull the rubes and has the money to get out his message.

Enough of this shit

Colbert wickedly says good bye to Jindal

And does the other clown car occupants no favors.

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