Saturday, August 30, 2008

Rush Limbaugh "abortion" email about Obama is good youtube material.

Politics: Fellow liberal publications Editor and Publisher and Chi Town's swamp section show heartache and disgust at a RNC staffer thinking that Limbaugh's take on Palin/Obama question and answer would make a good youtube clip.

NEW YORK What to do when you are mistakenly sent a highly provocative, even distasteful, email from a political party staffer and are then asked not to publish its contents? The issue came up again today when the Chicago Tribune received an email from a GOP staffer regarding a suggestion that the party post something on YouTube regarding a radio comment by Rush Limbaugh related to Sarah Palin's new baby and Barack Obama's view of abortion.

Here is an excerpt from a posting today on the Tribune's popular blog, The Swamp, by Andrew Zajac.
*

Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh boosted Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's pro-life position and mocked Barack Obama on his radio show yesterday with a make-believe riff in which Obama asked Palin "When you found out your baby would be born with Down syndrome, did you consider killing it before or after the due date?"

Limbaugh's "humor" caught the fancy of the Republican National Committee, which, in an internal e-mail, proposed using the bit in a YouTube clip.

The e-mail, which was sent to RNC Communications Director Danny Diaz, and mistakenly to a Tribune reporter, was titled "wow...good YouTube potential..."

Good potential maybe but it would be better just to use the audio and transcript of Obama in 2002 on the floor of the state senate worrying more about abortion doctors feelings.

PRESIDING OFFICER: (SENATOR WATSON)Senator Obama.

SENATOR OBAMA: So -- and again, I'm -- I'm not going to prolong this, but I
just want to be clear because I think this was the source of the
objections of the Medical Society. As I understand it, this puts
the burden on the attending physician who has determined, since
they were performing this procedure, that, in fact, this is a
nonviable fetus; that if that fetus, or child - however way you
want to describe it -
is now outside the mother's womb and the
doctor continues to think that it's nonviable but there's, let's
say, movement or some indication that, in fact, they're not just
coming out limp and dead, that, in fact, they would then have to
call a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure
that this is not a live child that could be saved. Is that
correct?

France's Socialist party 'close to meltdown'

France: As Ségolène Royal seem to have gone from hero to halfway to zero.

In just ten weeks, party faithful will choose a leader to replace the lack-lustre François Hollande, who admitted this week that the party "risks being demoted."

The candidates to fill his post will brush shoulders over the next two days in La Rochelle, western France, at an annual gathering to discuss policy.

But behind the smiles, the fight for party leadership will rage on behind the scenes, with a view to running for President in 2012.

One of the two chief candidates, last year's presidential loser, Ségolène Royal, has opened the university with a heartfelt plea.

"France needs us, awaits us, is looking for us. Love each other or disappear!" she declared to cheers.

However she can expect little affection from her closest opponent, Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoë, 58, who officially threw down the gauntlet to lead the party earlier this week. The polls place the openly gay politician as narrow favourite for the post.

However, the presidential chances of both appear slim. Miss Royal has not regained national confidence after her amateurish campaign against Nicolas Sarkozy, while Mr Delanoë's homosexuality is seen to be an almost insurmountable handicap in provincial France.

Capitalism taking down India's caste system?

India: Intriguing article on how the rise of India is helping the "untouchables" in some ways break away from the horrid caste sytem and its the number one activist of championing it, Chandra Bhan Prasad.

At a time of tremendous upheaval in India, Mr. Prasad is a lightning rod for one of the country’s most wrenching debates: Has India’s embrace of economic reforms really uplifted those who were consigned for centuries to the bottom of the social ladder? Mr. Prasad, who guesses himself to be in his late 40s because his birthday was never recorded, is an anomaly, often the lone Dalit in Delhi gatherings of high-born intelligentsia.

He has the zeal of an ideological convert: he used to be a Maoist revolutionary who, by his own admission, dressed badly, carried a pistol and recruited his people to kill their upper-caste landlords. He claims to have failed in that mission.

Mr. Prasad is a contrarian. He calls government welfare programs patronizing. He dismisses the countryside as a cesspool. Affirmative action is fine, in his view, but only to advance a small slice into the middle class, who can then act as role models. He calls English “the Dalit goddess,” able to liberate Dalits.

Along with India’s economic policies, once grounded in socialist ideals, Mr. Prasad has moved to the right. He is openly and mischievously contemptuous of leftists. “They have a hatred for those who are happy,” he said.


Yeah, he gets it but the NYTIMES being the NYTIMES tries to throw cold water on that sort of thinking.

"....Similar tales are echoed in many other villages across India. But here is the problem with Mr. Prasad’s survey. Even if it chronicles progress, the survey cannot tie it to any one cause, least of all economic changes. In fact, other empirical studies in this budding area of inquiry show that in parts of India where economic liberalization has had the greatest impact, neither rural poverty nor the plight of Dalits has consistently improved.

Abhijit Banerjee, an economist at M.I.T. who studies poverty in India, says that the reform years coincide with the rise of Dalit politicians, and that both factors may have contributed to a rise in confidence among Dalits.

Moreover, Old India’s caste prohibitions have made sure that some can prosper more easily than others. India’s new knowledge-based economy rewards the well-educated and highly skilled, and education for centuries was the preserve of the upper castes.

Today, discrimination continues, with some studies suggesting that those with familiar lower-caste names fare worse in job interviews, even with similar qualifications. The Indian elite, whether corporate heads, filmmakers, even journalists, is still dominated by the upper castes.

From across India still come reports of brutality against untouchables trying to transcend their destiny.

It is a measure of the hardships of rural India that so many Dalits in recent years are migrating to cities for back-breaking, often unregulated jobs, and that those who remain in their villages consider sharecropping a step up from day labor. "


But Prasad point is pretty straightforward, its not going to end the caste system now but eventually it will not be the same old way.

The village Dalits do not challenge Mr. Prasad with such contradictions as he travels among them preaching the virtues of economic liberalization. He is a big man, a success story that makes them proud.

Among the broad generalizations he favors, he says that Dalits aspire to marry upper-caste Brahmins to step up the ladder. He married a woman from his own caste, who, he proudly points out, is light-skinned. Across the caste ladder, fair complexion is still preferred over dark.

“Economic expansion is going to neutralize caste in 50 years,” he predicted. “It will not end caste.”

The man love NBC anchors have for Aaron Sorkin. Why?

Media: Hee, Nikki Finke ponders the stupidity of quoting Alan Sorkin movies to explain Obama's speech.

But NBC political anchors really really like him. Last night, NBC's Brian Williams and MSNBC's Keith Olbermann had an on-air bromance over, of all things, Aaron Sorkin's writing. Both men, twice on the telecast, compared Barack Obama's Democratic National Convention acceptance speech to a scene in Sorkin's pic The American President where President Andrew Shepherd rails against his political opponent. (See YouTube below...) Here's the thing: film reviewers found the weakest part of that Sorkin movie was its naive view of politics. As the Los Angeles Times' movie critic Kenny Turan wrote, the pic is filled with "fantasies [and] pipe dreams about the American political system and where it could theoretically be headed".

I don't know which is more humiliating for Williams and Olbermann: that they couldn't compare Obama's speech to something real, like nomination acceptance speeches from the past ... or they tried to praise Obama's speech and wound up unwittingly dissing it... or that they think Aaron Sorkin is so quotable.


Finke needs to lay off the NBC anchors, they were in a mutual orgasmic state the entire night, they can't be blamed for being that out of it.

#Update: When even a loathsome cretin like Bill Maher realizes the man love is strong from MSNBC you have a problem.

I think there is a problem, though, with the media gushing over him too much. I don't think he thinks that he's all that, but the media does. I mean, the coverage after, that I was watching, from MSNBC, I mean these guys were ready to have sex with him....It's embarrassing.

'Commander in Chief' creator criticizes Palin pick

Politics: The intelligence of a Hollywood liberal on display. What is it with this pick that has sent the nutters online, the MSM and other liberals into attack mode?

With 72-year-old Republican nominee John McCain shocking Beltway insiders by tapping 44-year-old Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his veep pick, suddenly a portion of the "Chief" premise seems downright precognitive.

"It's unbelievable isn't it?" said "Chief" creator Rod Lurie. "I think that Geena and I need to be paid royalties by the Republicans."

Lurie was reached by phone as he was leaving the Democratic National Convention, en route to Toronto, where he will screen his new film "Nothing but the Truth."

A Barack Obama supporter, Lurie criticized the real-life manifestation of his TV fiction.

"People who understand politics know anything is possible," he said. "Picking a woman is an absolute strategic idea from McCain's point of view. He's not talking about governing right now. The idea of this woman actually facing down [Vladimir] Putin and negotiating with [Dmitry] Medvedev is idiotic."


Feel the misogyny.

Its not like I see Obama facing down anyone much less someone like Putin or his puppet Medvy. I keep thinking of the scene in Tombstone where Wyatt Earp(Putin) slaps around the bully card dealer played by Billy Bob Thorton daring him to so something.

On a lighter note, Palin on the Craig Ferguson show from earlier this year.

Friday, August 29, 2008

'Dutch Spy Recalled from Iran on US Attack Plan'

Iran: Wha? The Dutch have been messing up the Iranian weapons industry? Go Dutch spies Go!

The Dutch AIVD secret service has had an ultra-secret operation underway in Iran in recent years. This has been halted in connection with plans for a US attack on Iran, newspaper De Telegraaf reported Friday.

The "ultra-secret operation" had as its aim infiltration and sabotage of the weapons industry in the Islamic republic. "The operation, described as extremely successful, was halted recently in connection with plans for an impending US air attack on Iraq. Along with this, targets would also be bombed which were connected with the Dutch espionage action," writes the Netherlands' biggest newspaper.

"One of the agents involved, who was able to infiltrate the Iranian industry under the supervision of the AIVD, was recently recalled because the US was thought to be making a decision within weeks to attack Iran with unmanned aircraft. Among the potential targets were said to be not only nuclear plants, but also military installations that have been brought to light partly by the agency of the AIVD," according to the newspaper.

"Information from the AIVD operation has in recent years been shared with the American CIA secret service," the paper continued. "Various supplies could also be sabotaged and stopped. These were parts for missiles and launching equipment."

An epic convergence of suck in South Florida media.

Media: They cut staff and now want to share stories with each other. The Herald, the Sun-Sentinel and The Palm Beach Post by themselves have become useless rags but the sharing of stories that mean little to people unless it is in their county.

The Miami Herald, the Sun-Sentinel and The Palm Beach Post announced content sharing plans Friday that the editors said will involve exchanging basic news stories at the same time South Florida's major newspapers compete against one another.

The experiment, which will begin Monday and run for a three-month trial period, will enable the papers to trade coverage of routine events and feature reviews.

Editors of the three papers said they will preserve the competition that has been a hallmark of South Florida's newspaper business for decades by limiting the sharing to routine news. Broader stories, investigative pieces, columns and feature stories will not be part of the exchange, they said. El Nuevo Herald, El Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale and La Palma in West Palm Beach also will be a part of the exchange.

''Our goal is to better serve our South Florida audiences while protecting the individual brands and identities of our respective newspapers,'' a statement from the editors said.


There is ZERO competition between the papers now. People in each county don't care what happens to people in the other county. This is just the beginning of the final phase of panic before each of these newspapers collapse in 5 years.

Michael Moore and Olbermann happy as Hurricane Gustav nears New Orleans.

Nation: As Olbermann just sits there with the trademark goofy grin. This also proves to Moore there is a God in heaven

Really? Obama camp knocks Gov. Palin "Inexperience"..

Politics: Do they really want to go down that route when they have spent the last 8 months downplaying Obama's inexperience and saying its not a problem to try and slam the Governor of Alaska?

I see CNN and NBC's Matt Lauer wanting to play up that angle, knock your hypocritical selves out.

Update# Obama distances himself from his campaign press release on Palin.

At a stop in Monaca, Pa., Barack Obama seemed to distance himself from his campaign's first, harshly critical response to the Palin pick.

"I think that, uh, you know, campaigns start getting these, uh, hair triggers and, uh, the statement that Joe and I put out reflects our sentiments," he said, according to the pool report, apparently criticizing his staff for going overboard, as he did occasionally in the primary.

Here comes the sexist attacks on Governor Sarah Palin

Media: An excellent pick on many levels that will bring conservatives together. But if you think that the MSM attacks on Hillary were bad, you haven't seen anything yet as the ones coming towards Gov. Palin. Already you have John Roberts of CNN taking the fact she has a down syndrome child as a way to attack her. I expect disgusting takes from the likes of Daily Kos and TPM sites against her. As for MSNBC, the Obama network I don't think Chris Matthews will be able to contain himself.

Mexicans returning home from America driving down wages.

Immigration: The irony...

Mexican President Felipe Calderon plans to help returning nationals by providing food, medical care and temporary shelter if needed. But reports are already out in Mexico that the large number of illegal immigrants returning home could drive down wages and put pressure on social services — the same concerns many Americans have with illegals living and working in the U.S.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Keith Olbermann blasts AP's Charles Babington

Media: Newsbusters must get this clip. Olbermann blasts AP's Charles Babington for not praising Black Jesus's speech as the greatest thing ever! He said Babington should get new work. MSNBC has pretty much marked this day where all objectivity is thrown out the window.

Update# Here is Liberal cheerleader Greg Mitchell's "take" where he laughably claims Olbermann attack was unusual.

In an unusually heated attack on a veteran political reporter by a cable news host, MSNBC's Keith Olbermann laced into the Associated Press's Charles Babington an hour after Barack Obama had concluded his speech in Denver on Thursday night.

With rare exception, nearly all of the top commentators and reporters on the three cable news networks had hailed Obama's speech as something new and powerful, and filled with specifics, and predicted it would have a positive effect on his chances vs. John McCain. This hallelujah chorus included conservatives such as Bill Kristol and Pat Buchanan and the longtime Republican David Gergen, as well as Tom Brokaw and Brian Williams. Buchanan called it the best and most important political convention speech he had ever heard, going back 48 years.

So Olbermann was outraged that the AP's Babington had written, in his analysis of the speech, just off the wire, that Obama had tried nothing new and that his speech was lacking in specifics.


He read the first few paragraphs on the air, lamented that it would be printed in hundred of newspapers on Friday, and concluded, "It is analysis that strikes me as having born no resemblance to the speech you and I just watch. None whatsoever. And for it to be distributed by the lone national news organization in terms of wire copy to newspapers around the country and websites is a remarkable failure of that news organization.

"Charles Babington, find a new line of work."

Media Cheers Obama Speech.

Media: and they have kept on cheering on MSNBC.

Several members of the media were seen cheering and clapping for Barack Obama as the Illinois senator accepted the Democratic nomination Thursday.

Standing on the periphery of the football field serving as the Democratic convention floor, dozens of men and women wearing green media floor passes chanted along with the crowd.

Two members of the foreign press exchanged opportunities to take each other's pictue while wearing an Obama hat and waving a flag.

Several others nearby screamed "woo" during some of Obama's biggest applause lines.


The Hill as some are asking out these reporters/journalists but so far nothing. But we got one media member cheering.

Chicago reporters covering the Democratic Convention in Denver were stunned to witness WGN-Channel 9's Allison Payne cheering and applauding for speakers Wednesday night while she was seated with the Illinois delegation in the Pepsi Center.

The veteran newswoman has been co-anchoring convention coverage for the Tribune Co.-owned station.

Earlier in the week, Payne was quoted in the Chicago Tribune apologizing to viewers for her bizarre performance on Channel 9's 9 p.m. newscast Aug. 21. "I was not drunk," she said.

She attributed her slurred speech and erratic behavior to a series of ministrokes.

Muslim council leaders try to make Non-Muslims observe Ramadan.

UK: This was a well thought out plan.


The row was sparked by an email sent to all councillors this week outlining arrangements for Town Hall committee meetings next month, which marks the Muslim fasting period of Ramadan.

It said that new council leader Lutfur Rahman and his deputy, Siraj Islam, had requested that meetings be kept to a minimum to accommodate fasting councillors.

They have also asked all other councillors to resist eating until the breaking of the fast at sunset.

It is the first time such a request has been made and it comes as Ramadan falls earlier this year during the longer daylight hours.

Council bosses have also ordered that the Town Hall’s business agenda should also be reduced, with only seven scheduled committee meetings for the entire month, to deal with the Ramadan restrictions.

Officers have also been barred from arranging any more and asked to find ways of dropping some of the scheduled seven.

Those going ahead generally start at about 6.30pm, so with sunset due to fall just after 7.30pm at the beginning of September and around 6.30pm by the end of Ramadan, the breaking of the fast, known as Iftar, will take place during meetings.

At those points, there will be 45 minute adjournments to allow members to eat and pray, council leaders have ordered.


A Lib Dem complained to the paper and the reversal and excuses were swift.

Within hours of her contacting the East London Advertiser and making a complaint to new council leader Lutfur Rahman, the Town Hall launched a damage-limitation exercise.

In a climb-down statement, the council said the email had been sent after complaints from some councillors last year that non-Muslims had been eating their Iftar packs.

Despite the clear request in the email, the council statement said: “There is absolutely no suggestion that during Ramadan non-Muslim councillors have been asked to refrain from eating or drinking when Muslims are observing the fast.

“As normal, water will be provided at council meetings taking place during Ramadan.

“Tea, coffee, Iftar packs and non Iftar snacks will be available in a separate room for all councillors.

“All that’s being asked for is courtesy to be shown to the sensitivities around some councillors eating during council meetings whilst others in the room are fasting.


Note no climbdown on arranging council meetings to cater to Muslims exclusively. The sensitivities ploy is ridiculous as no learned Muslim would think it is right to force others to cater to his or her religious practices. This is a couple of twits who got caught trying to push their own agenda.

Obama speech all about helping the helpless America and its people!

Politics: Nanny state politics.

Nothing in here but empty pie in the sky promises like America will not be dependent on foreign oil in 10 years which given the hostility towards nuke power and drilling on our own lands from him and the Dems is laughable but this line is amazing.

“Tonight, more Americans are out of work and more are working harder for less. More of you have lost your homes and more are watching your home values plummet. More of you have cars you can’t afford to drive, credit card bills you can’t afford to pay and tuition that is beyond your reach

“These challenges are not all of government’s making. But the failure to respond is a direct result of a broken politics in Washington and the failed presidency of George W. Bush.


Did people buy vehicles and run up credit card bills by force? What should be the government's response to people running up bills of their own doing, idiots who got houses they knew they couldn't afford or tried to flip them? Another bailout by the taxpayers? Of course, its Black Jesus's way. Nothing is ever your fault but someone else like big oil or evil business.

“I will eliminate capital gains taxes for the small businesses and the start-ups that will create the high-wage, high-tech jobs of tomorrow.


What about the startups/small businesses that are not making the high-wage high tech jobs which would be most of them?

"“Unlike John McCain, I will stop giving tax breaks to corporations that ship our jobs overseas, and I will start giving them to companies that create good jobs right here in America."


Protectionism and empty tax breaks for companies here to compete with companies overseas which still won't be able to do (unless its basically zero taxes paid plus credits) is always a smart economic plan. Global market is greater than local union loving plans, see Detroit how it worked out for them.

I’ll help our auto companies re-tool, so that the fuel-efficient cars of the future are built right here in America. I’ll make it easier for the American people to afford these new cars.


The auto companies need to retool on their own not with government help as it just prolong bad business habits. Fuel-efficient cars are already being made in America by Honda and Toyota who had the business savvy to be prepared.

Typical stump speech that will be lauded by the MSM as the greatest thing ever.

Update# More from the greatest speech ever!

"In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society, but what it really means is  you're on your own. Out of work? Tough luck. No health care? The market will fix it. Born into poverty? Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps  even if you don't have boots. You're on your own. "


Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps is what made America great, all this speech is socialism wrapped up in a nice gooey package for those who think they are entitled to everything someone who is better off than them. The lazy and uninterested, the whiners and the parasites.

But I will also go through the federal budget, line by line, eliminating programs that no longer work and making the ones we do need work better and cost less  because we cannot meet twenty-first century challenges with a twentieth century bureaucracy.


Line item veto? Cutting down on pork barrel projects. Come on now this is fantasy.



That sounds nice for an empty bumper sticker but you are telling me as President, McCain wouldn't go after Bin Laden anywhere in the world if they get a clear shot at him? Goofy.

We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals.

I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination. Passions fly on immigration, but I don't know anyone who benefits when a mother is separated from her infant child or an employer undercuts American wages by hiring illegal workers.

The second amendment and immigration issues cannot be compromised with half ass ideas. Obama has made it clear he is hostile to gun rights and loves open border politics. Americans benefit when illegal immigrants are not allowed to take jobs Americans are willing to do as shown just this week after the raid on Howard Industries.

Obama campaign's thuggery against Stanley Kurtz over William Ayers.

Politics: One of the most outrageous acts of trying to shut down opposing voices I have ever seen in America. Obama first tried to intimidate stations who were airing American issues Project ad about him and William Ayers. Now they have tried to shut down Stanley Kurtz of the National Review for daring to read up and talk about his relations with domestic terrorist William Ayers.

This is flat out thuggery of the worst kind and shows how thin-skinned Obama and his people really are when it comes to opposing opinions that do not worship him. In the end this is just stupid because all it will do is bring more publicity to the issue and the gutter trash tactics they are using to stifle speech.

Cuban punk rocker to stand trial Friday for 'social dangerousness'

Cuba: The socialist paradise strikes again.

Cuba has ordered jailed punk rocker Gorki Aguila, an outspoken critic of Fidel Castro and the communist government, to stand trail on Friday for "social dangerousness," a charge that could carry up to four years in prison.
Authorities arrested the 39-year-old lead singer of the band Porno para Ricardo at his Havana home on Monday as he was working on a new album.

Cuban law defines "social dangerousness" as behaviour contrary to "communist morality."

Critics say authorities use the charge to detain offenders before they have a chance to commit a crime.

The group is known for performing songs with angry lyrics that poke fun at or openly insult Fidel Castro and his brother Raul, who became Cuba's president in February.

Porno para Ricardo was banned from official Cuban airwaves, but has continued to hold concerts behind closed doors.

The government often applies the charge of "social dangerousness" in cases of public drunkenness or as a way to keep large groups of unemployed Cubans - or those simply skipping work - from congregating on city streets during business hours.

It is also applied to cases of drug addiction and "anti-social behaviour."

Brazil and Argentina React in Opposite Ways to soaring food prices.

World: Brazil: "Awesome! Let us help you help yourselves. This way we all win while getting a larger market share!"

Luciano Alves planted beans, corn and grain on about 7,500 acres of his farm in southern Brazil last year. This year, he is planting 8,600 acres. And he credits Brazil’s president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, with the increase.

“The government is helping us finance the purchase of new machinery,” said Mr. Alves. “They reduced the interest rates we pay and have given us more time to pay off the loans. It’s vital.”

Rising food prices mean many farmers around the world are reaping record profits. And South America’s agricultural powerhouses, Brazil and Argentina, are responding to the farming windfall in opposite ways.

Mr. da Silva’s government recently announced record farm credits, a form of indirect subsidy, to encourage Brazil’s farmers to produce more while the price of their exports are high on world markets, a move that should improve Brazil’s economy.

Argentina: "Screw the farmers, take their profits!"

But Argentina, Brazil’s economic and political archrival, decided to share the agricultural windfall at home.

Worried about the wave of inflation rippling around the world, the government of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner of Argentina increased export taxes on some crops, a move meant to keep down domestic food prices by encouraging farmers flush from global profits to sell more at home.

“In our country the government is trying to get money to subsidize other sectors of the economy,” said Eduardo Cucagna, president of FN Semillas, an Argentina seed company, objecting to the policy. “I think Brazil is doing the opposite, adapting to what the world is offering now. They’re doing it right.”

In the race to take advantage of the tight global food market, Brazil has a number of advantages over its southern neighbor. It is much bigger, with around 173 million acres of land currently under cultivation, more than twice that of Argentina. It has a wider range of agricultural exports. And while Argentina is the world’s second biggest exporter of corn and the third biggest exporter of soybeans, Brazil is the world’s first or second largest exporter of beef, soybeans, orange juice, chicken, sugar and coffee.

The government in Brasília wants it to stay that way. Last month, it announced a $49 billion credit line for farmers, up 12 percent from last year’s total. Officials said farmers needed the credit to buy tractors and other machinery, pay for seed and fertilizer — which have also risen in price — and to increase productivity.

Brazil will win and get bigger while the Baroness Kirchner tries to strangle the hell out of its own farmers. She tried once already with a heavy windfall tax that fail and she won't give up.

Western nations warn Russia. Russia falls over laughing.

World:Oh, I bet Russia is shaking now. If you want to confront Putin, you better have a leader in the West that is not afraid to take it to him.

TBILISI, Georgia - Western leaders warned the Kremlin on Wednesday to "change course," hoping to keep the conflict from growing into a new Cold War after tensions broadened to imperil a key nuclear pact and threaten U.S. meat and poultry trade with Russia.



Moscow said it was NATO expansion and Western support for Georgia that was causing the new East-West divisions, and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin lashed out at the United States for using military ships to deliver humanitarian aid to Georgia.

Meanwhile, Georgia slashed its embassy staff in Moscow to protest Russia's recognition of the two separatist enclaves that were the flashpoint for the five-day war between the two nations earlier this month.

The tensions have spread to the Black Sea, which Russia shares unhappily with three nations that belong to NATO and two others that desperately want to, Ukraine and Georgia. Some Ukrainians fear Moscow might set its sights on their nation next.

Meanwhile, Russia is daring the west to do something more than talk but considering the whole situation is in the hands of the wimps, nothing will get done.

Mississippi plant raid of started by union member tip.

Immigration: While on a national level unions have embraced getting illegals to be members to beef up numbers, on the ground level the tensions seem to be coming to the surface.

Union bosses in this region of rural Mississippi have long grumbled that the largest factories here hire illegal immigrants, and that the immigrants were starting to get more overtime and supervisory positions.

Friction between the union and immigrant workers, along with a tipoff at an electrical manufacturing plant, boiled over this week into the biggest workplace immigration raid in the nation's history.

When the first of the 595 suspected illegal immigrants was taken into custody Monday, some fellow workers broke into applause. A spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said the investigation started three years ago after agents received a tip from a union member.

In interviews with The Associated Press, both union members and immigrants spoke of a simmering tension. At least one immigrant said scare tactics were used to pressure people to join the union.

Union members said they resented immigrants, who were often allowed to work as much as 40 hours of overtime a week when other workers were discouraged from doing so. All declined to give their names, saying they feared for their jobs


On Wednesday, hundreds of people lined up outside the plant to apply for jobs as news of the raid spread. A billboard had gone up last week, before the raid, saying the company was hiring.

"I need a job and got kids. I heard that they need some help now," said Willie Keys, 20, who applied Wednesday. "All them Mexicans got fired because they didn't have a pass ... All these businesses have been taking Americans' jobs."

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Olbermann and Matthews unhinged mental midgets.

Politics: MSNBC is making more news from its leftist personalities than the convention than on it with Politico making news that the whole place is about to explode due mainly to Olbermann's coup d'tat of the station.

Amid a spate of awkward on-air conflicts among MNSBC anchors at this week’s Democratic convention, some staff members say there are sharp internal disputes at the cable network over whether its opinion and personality-driven political coverage has crossed the line.

“The situation at our channel is about to blow up,” a high-ranking MSNBC journalist told Politico on Wednesday.

Two other MSNBC sources said some of the testy on-air exchanges between Keith Olbermann — whose quick-witted and often caustic commentary has fueled ratings growth — and other network personalities were a public glimpse of much more intense behind-the-scenes turmoil.

As replays of the conflicts became YouTube hits, MSNBC President Phil Griffin gave his first public defense in a Politico interview.

“MSNBC does not have an ideology,” Griffin said. “We hire smart people who are passionate about their love of politics and love of news.”

Via Newsbusters comes the latest non-ideological spat.

Few Republicans have made it onto MSNBC air during the network's Dem convention coverage, but even that is apparently too much for Keith Olbermann. As Chris Matthews was interviewing GOP consultant Mike Murphy in the interlude between Bill Clinton and Joe Biden tonight, Olbermann could be heard off-camera angrily demanding "let's wrap him up, alright?"

It was Murphy's surmise that, in the privacy of the polling booth, Bill and Hilary would pull the lever for McCain that seemed to set Olbermann off prompt him to call for the hook.


Though Murphy got off the line of the night.

"MURPHY: Absolutely. I really believe Hillary Clinton will vote for McCain. Look, they're friends. [Crowd boos]. Ah, come on, don't shout me down: let me talk. I mean come on, this is, you guys are so in the tank we ought to be filming this on a submarine."

Celebrities swoon over Obama aka Black Jesus.

Politics: Oh yes, When Black Jesus comes down from the heavens at his Greek temple, these are his disciples who will hear him.

“As soon as I landed at the airport, I could feel my whole body chemistry change,” said Gloria Reuben, the beautiful actress who played the ill-fated Jeanie Boulet on “ER.” This is Ms. Reuben’s first convention, and she was taken by the buzz and jam-packed schedule of events.

Most of all, though, she is taken by Senator Barack Obama.

Ms. Reuben, who has a new TNT television series, “Raising the Bar,” will not be going to the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul next week. Mostly it is because she is busy. But she is also very much an Obama girl, she said.

“When he’s elected, he’ll change the climate,” economically and around the world, she said. And Ms. Reuben believes that he will “send a message that no matter what your name is, what you look like, what your age is” — that “all of those glass ceilings will be gone around the world.”


Anne Hathaway( who may have narced on her ex-beau)

AP: What inspires you about Obama?

"I was kind of afraid of Obama the first time I saw him. I thought, I've been burned by guys like you before. I've been burned by politicians before that I wanted to believe in and just didn't live up to it. And I was afraid to trust him and I was afraid to have hope when I first kind of became aware of him. It was around the time that he gave his speech on race that I just said 'I can't deny how I feel about you, Barack Obama. I want you to be the president. I want you in the White House.'

"I think that not only can Barack cause change — because that's where his heart lies — as a true American success story, he understands how hard it is. And when he says that he will, when people come to him with problems, he's been there. I just heard the other day, he just paid off his student loans two years ago. And so when people talk about financial issues and the higher cost of education, he really gets it. So not only do I think he has the power, the temperment and the tremendous character that can cause change in the government, I think he's the sort of person that inspires us all to be our best selves.


Variety:

At an event for the Children’s Defense Fund at the Denver Art Museum, Jennifer Lopez leaned against child welfare advocate Marian Wright Edelman, and posed stylishly in a shapely, red dress for pictures in front of a three-deep phalanx of photogs.

"I wanted to figure out how to make a real difference," Lopez told the gathered politicos and journalists, including "Entertainment Tonight" and "The Insider" as well as outlets like E!

In the crowd at the Denver Art Center was Connie Britton, a star of "Friday Night Lights," who had just arrived in Denver on Wednesday morning.

"I am still kind of figuring it out, really," said Britton, who was anxious to get to the Pepsi Center. "Right now, this all feels like ‘What am I doing here?’ "


George Clooney is surprisingly keeping his mouth shut.

Teacher Is Accused of Giving Students Cocaine

Crime: She was dubbed "the coolest woman alive." A teacher dubbed that should raise suspicions immediately.

Australian school bans cartwheels

Australia: Another in the endless examples of how this younger generation of kids will turn out to be a freaking wreck when they grow up. Stop coddling the children and trying to create an infantile society.

A school in northern Australia will review a ban on cartwheels, handstands and other gymnastic tumbles in the playground after a community backlash, the state education department said Wednesday.
Belgian Gardens State School in Townsville, Queensland, recently banned all unsupervised gymnastic activities outdoors in what it called an effort to protect students from injury.

The policy became nationwide news Tuesday when a parent complained to the Townsville Bulletin newspaper.

Kylie Buschgens said her 10-year-old daughter had been punished for doing cartwheels, even on the grass, after students were told of the ban at a recent assembly. She told the newspaper that her daughter and other students now "sit around and do nothing" during recess and lunch breaks because they are not interested in other sports.

On Tuesday, Education Minister Rod Welford suggested the school should overturn its decision.

Palm Beach voters are going to suck this election.

Politics: The state got rid of the touchscreens and brought back the paper ballots. Lord help us.

Marking ballots in Palm Beach County is supposed to be as easy as drawing an arrow from right to left. But it’s apparently not simple for everyone.

Seventy-seven disputed ballots, of the 11,199 cast during early voting on optical scanners, were reviewed today by Palm Beach County elections canvassing board. The board includes a local judge, a county attorney, and County Commissioners Mary McCarty and Jess Santamaria.

Instead of drawing arrows, some voters marked their ballots with squiggly lines, others circled candidate names (an improper proper method to cast a vote), while voters some just didn’t finish their arrows.

“No matter how easy you make it, there’s room for voter error,” said Supervisor of Elections Arthur Anderson.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Union members are racist towards Obama.

Politics: AFL-CIO members must be thrilled to be painted as knuckle dragging racists.

DENVER — Racial prejudice is being cited among senior union leaders to explain Sen. Barack Obama’s difficulty in winning over support from white rank-and-file members.

Obama (D-Ill.) is counting on organized labor to help win him key electoral votes in Ohio, Michigan and other battleground states.

Karen Ackerman, political director for the AFL-CIO, acknowledged that Obama’s race is an important factor for some union members.


“This race is very complicated because there is an African-American candidate for president,” said Ackerman. “We feel there is a racial component for some union members, but we’re confident we can overcome that.”

Some in the labor movement say that Obama’s race has made it difficult for a significant number of union members to support him over Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), the presumptive GOP nominee.


Via Instapundit.

Danish publisher hopes to publish Jewel of Medina

Culture: Where are the other American publishers who should be stepping up to plate? Why is it left for a Danish publisher to have a backbone?

A Danish publisher is in negotiations to buy Sherry Jones's novel about the child bride of Muhammad, which was dropped by Random House in America and pulled from bookshops in Serbia.

The Jewel of Medina tells the story of Aisha, one of Muhammad's wives, from the age of six to 18 when Muhammad dies. It was bought by Random House US for a reported advance of $100,000, but then dropped after the publisher was told by academics and security experts that publication was potentially more risky than Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses and the Danish publication of cartoons of Muhammad.

Last week, Serbian publisher BeoBook withdrew 1,000 copies of the book from shops across Serbia, following protests from an Islamic pressure group. BeoBook also apologised for publishing the novel.

Now small Danish publisher Trykkefrihedsselskabets Library (Free Speech Library) is in negotiations with Jones's agent over publication of The Jewel of Medina in Denmark. Co-owner Helle Merete Brix said that the fact that Random House was prepared to pay $100,000 for the book showed its quality, and that she was determined not to "bow to any censorship".

She added: "I think that whether you are Muslim, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu or atheist you have to be able to bear insults. You can't say 'I'm a Muslim, and that means I should be above criticism'. You can freely insult Jesus Christ, you can mock other religions."

Olbermann calls Howard Wolfson "Tokyo Rose."

Media: Via Newsbusters.

KEITH OLBERMANN: Irony upon irony, instead of the commercials designed to destroy Hillary Clinton, [the Republicans] are using Hillary Clinton in commercials designed to destroy the Democratic nominee.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Those are crocodile tears. And you wonder whether an objective person, either rational or post-rational, would be able to appreciate the fact that that's clear politics--nothing wrong with it. But Republicans have no heart in Hillary Clinton's claim to the White House. They villainized her for years. Their commercials, their attitudes are--you go to a Republican hangout, it's all anti-Hillary. That's their point of view. To now hold her up as some victim of some sort of foul play, of unfair politics, is a joke. But the funny thing about it is, they're enjoying it. Fox News, for example, seems to enjoy it. It's no accident, for example, that they hired Howard Wolfson. They use him as some sort of, oh, little toy soldier waiting on the shelf.

OLBERMANN: Tokyo Rose was the thought that came to my mind.


I guess that would make Keith Olbermann... Lord Haw Haw?

Obama demands justice department investigate GOP donors.

Politics: A followup on the story from yesterday where Obama and his campaign are employing jackboot thuggery in getting the William Ayers spot off the air. Now they have sent a second letter demanding the DOJ go after GOP donors who funded the ad. This is a tactic pointed out by Ben Smith they pulled on Hillary Clinton supporters to stop funding ads against Obama.

Politico: Obama general counsel Bob Bauer today sent a second, sharper letter to the Justice Department, directly attacking the Dallas billionaire funding a harsh attack ad, Harold Simmons.

"We reiterate our request that the Department of Justice fulfill its commitment to take prompt action to investigate and to prosecute the American issues Project, and we further request that the Department of Justice investigate and prosecute Howard (sic) Simmons for a knowing and willful violation of the individual aggregate contribution limits," he wrote.

He called the group's activities "patently illegal."

Bauer made the case that Simmons' group fulfilling its a real nonprofit charter because it hasn't spent any money on anything other than attacking Obama.

The American Issues Project released a statement responding to the letter.

"Having failed in its attempts to get our legal, factual and fully-supported ad off the air, Barack Obama's campaign now wants to put our donors in prison for exercising their right to free speech," said Ed Martin, the group's president. "These over-the-top bullying tactics are reminiscent of the kind of censorship one would see in a Stalinist dictatorship, with the only difference being that those guys generally had to wait until they were in power to throw people who disagreed with them into jail."

The group said its ad would continue to air through the end of the Democratic National Convention. Simmons has spent almost $3 million to air the ad, which can be seen on the group's site.

A spokeswoman for the Justice Department, Laura Sweeney, had no comment on the second letter.

It's worth noting that this isn't the first time Bauer has called for criminal investigations and prosecutions into the donors to independent groups critical of Obama, including one supporting John Edwards and another supporting Hillary Rodham Clinton. His words did have the effect of scaring their donors and consultants, but haven't yet appeared to result in any prosecution.


This is flat out Zimbabwe's CIO tactics done in legalese. Disgraceful.

Liar loans' threaten to extend mortgage woes

Nation: These are the same people who will get a bailout from the just passed mortgage bill.

In the mortgage industry, they are called "liar loans" — mortgages approved without requiring proof of the borrower's income or assets. The worst of them earn the nickname "ninja loans," short for "no income, no job and (no) assets."

The nation's struggling housing market, already awash in subprime foreclosures, is getting hit with a second wave of losses, as homeowners with liar loans default in record numbers. In some parts of the country, the loans are threatening to drag out the mortgage crisis for two more years.

"Those loans are going to perform very badly," said Thomas Lawler, a Virginia housing economist. "They¹re heavily concentrated in states where home prices are plummeting," such as California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona.

Many homeowners with liar loans are stuck. They can't refinance because housing prices in those markets have nose-dived, and lenders are demanding full documentation of income and assets.

Losses on liar loans could total $100 billion, according to Moody's Economy.com. That's on top of the $400 billion in expected losses from subprime loans. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the nation's largest buyers and backers of mortgages, lost a combined $3.1 billion between April and June.

Half of their credit losses came from sour liar loans, which are officially called Alternative-A loans (Alt-A for short) because they are seen as a step below A-credit, or prime, borrowers.

Who cares what Jon Stewart has to say about the media.

Media: If the media wants to stop being seen as a whipping boy, one way is to tel Jon Stewart to go screw himself. Why is the media taking cues from him on how to act? This is the same as George Clooney wanting to give a speech about Darfur at the U.N. until certain countries realized what an idiotic move this is to be lectured by an actor.

Jon Stewart ripped the cable news networks Monday as a "brutish, slow-witted beast" and castigated Fox News in particular as "an appendage of the Republican Party."

Wearing a gray T-shirt, khaki pants and a healthy stubble, the "Daily Show" host told reporters at a University of Denver breakfast that Fox's "fair and balanced" slogan is an insult "to people with brains" and that only "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace "saves that network from slapping on a bumper sticker. . . . Barack Obama could cure cancer and they'd figure out a way to frame it as an economic disaster."

"I'm stunned to see Karl Rove on a news network as an analyst," he said of the Bush White House aide turned Fox commentator. Stewart, who voted for John Kerry in 2004, said he didn't see CNN's James Carville, the former Bill Clinton aide, in the same category because "I don't think he's being passed off as a sage."

A Fox News spokesman, who was authorized to give the network's response to Stewart's comments but declined to be named, replied that "Jon's clearly out of touch," citing a Pew Research Center study showing the network has the most balanced audience in cable news, 39 percent Republicans and 33 percent Democrats. "But being out of touch with mainstream America is nothing new to Jon, as evidenced by the crash-and-burn ratings of this year's Oscars telecast."

Stewart included CNN and MSNBC in a far-ranging indictment of what he called "that false sense of urgency they create, the sense that everything is breaking news. . . . The 24-hour networks are now driving the narratives and everyone else is playing catch-up."

.....Stewart, who is doing his nightly show from both conventions, declared his love for newspapers as a better source of political coverage but said they are fighting "a losing battle because they're getting overshadowed." He pronounced the network evening newscasts "obsolete" because of the growing speed of news.

The Comedy Central funnyman touched a nerve when he criticized journalists for having off-the-record dinners with politicians, such as a barbecue in March at John McCain's Arizona ranch. "That colors your vision of them so clearly and so profoundly," he said.

When New York Times columnist David Brooks and others protested that there was value in getting to know candidates privately, Stewart stood his ground: "I don't say access is useless. But the more you get sucked into it, the more you become part of that machinery." And when another reporter accused him of courting the press at the breakfast as skillfully as any officeholder, Stewart called the comparison "crazy."


The same media he loves to beat up on are the same touting him as the great moral observer of the nation. At some point they are going to get fed up and hit him off of his self-built pedestal

Monday, August 25, 2008

Obama tries to get William Ayers ad off the air.

Politics: Black Jesus calling down the thunder on those who dare to cross him! Calling in the Justice Department to investigate the group is very police state.

Barack Obama is striking back fiercely and swiftly to stamp out an ad that links him to a 1960s radical, eager to demonstrate a far more aggressive response to attacks than John Kerry did when faced with the 2004 "Swift Boat" campaign.

Obama not only aired a response ad to the spot linking him to William Ayers, but he sought to block stations the commercial by warning station managers and asking the Justice Department to intervene. The campaign also planned to compel advertisers to pressure stations that continue to air the anti-Obama commercial.

.....Fox News and CNN have declined to air the anti-Obama ad. But by Monday afternoon, the ad had run about 150 times in local markets in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia and Michigan, according to Evan Tracey, head of TNS Media Intelligence/Campaign Media Analysis Group, an ad tracking firm.

Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor said Obama supporters have inundated stations that are airing the ad, many of them owned by Sinclair Communications, with 93,000 e-mails. He called the ad false, despicable and outrageous.

"Other stations that follow Sinclair's lead should expect a similar response from people who don't want the political discourse cheapened with these false, negative attacks," Vietor said.

Sinclair offices were closed late Monday and officials there could not be immediately contacted.

"It seems they protest a bit too much," American Issues Project spokesman Christian Pinkston said. "They're going all of these routes — through threats, intimation — to try to thwart the First Amendment here because they don't have an argument on merit."


Not a wise move sending out the digital brownshirts to do your dirty work and trying to stifle free speech of a group that doesn't support you. I am not surprised by it.

Pot Grow House Bust At Mall Of Americas.

Crime: Welcome to South Florida.

Agents found more than 200 marijuana plants inside a building at the Mall of the Americas in west Miami-Dade late Friday. Now they want to know who was cultivating them, and who set up the hydroponics lab that could have lit the mall on fire with flimsy wiring.

The Drug Enforcement Administration discovered the plants growing on the second floor of the mall in what agents said was a 400-square-foot storage area. An official with the D.E.A. told CBS4'S Shomari Stone that she's never seen anything like this before.

The 'grow house" had plants growing from three-to-six-feet tall in an air conditioned environment along with camera surveillance in a storage area on the second floor of the mall. The wiring was flimsy, and could have sparked a fire in the popular mall.

Logic dictates that if they were using power from the mall, you would think someone would figure there is an unusual spike in power. But again, this is South Florida

Poynter Online redesign is horrible.

Media: You would think a journalism school would remember the mantra of keep it simple stupid. Look at this mess.

Everything is blended together and jumbled up. Nothing stands out, not the headline or the links to click on. The old design at least you could quickly figure out what is what but this is a mess. Look at that screenshot and figure where one news item starts and ends under 5 seconds.




Update: Bolding the post headline and the source not exactly helping matters.

Environmentalists policies make for more dangerous Komodo Dragons

Enviro: It wouldn't be the first time enviros tried to do "good" just to see it blow up in their face.

The intruder, a Komodo dragon, is the world's largest lizard, an ancient, fierce carnivore found only on a handful of remote islands in eastern Indonesia. Reaching 10 feet in length, the dragons feed on buffaloes, deer and an occasional human. Just a year ago, a boy about Syarif's age died in a dragon's jaws, his bones smashed against rocks to facilitate reptilian digestion.

That killing, and a spate of other close encounters, has fanned a panic in the dragons' main habitat, the Komodo National Park. Touted by Indonesia as its "Jurassic Park," this rocky, barren archipelago is home to some 2,500 dragons and nearly 4,000 people, clustered in four fishing villages of wooden stilt houses.

These locals have long viewed the dragons as a reincarnation of fellow kinsfolk, to be treated with reverence. But now, villagers say, the once-friendly dragons have turned into vicious man-eaters. And they blame policies drafted by American-funded environmentalists for this frightening turn of events.

"When I was growing up, I felt the dragons were my family," says 55-year-old Hajji Faisal. "But today the dragons are angry with us, and see us as enemies." The reason, he and many other villagers believe, is that environmentalists, in the name of preserving nature, have destroyed Komodo's age-old symbiosis between dragon and man.

Warner bros rebooting Superman again.

Entertainment: Even they had to admit Bryan Singer's godawful version of Superman was in need of a revamping. It was just a warm remake of the first ones with a campy Kevin Spacey, a bad plot device, a kid! Stalker emo moping Superman and the writers taking to America bashing by scrapping truth, justice and the America way quote because they thought he was more of a world citizen.

Warner Bros. also put on hold plans for another movie starring multiple superheroes -- known as "Batman vs. Superman" -- after the $215 million "Superman Returns," which had disappointing box-office returns, didn't please executives. "'Superman' didn't quite work as a film in the way that we wanted it to," says Mr. Robinov. "It didn't position the character the way he needed to be positioned." "Had 'Superman' worked in 2006, we would have had a movie for Christmas of this year or 2009," he adds. "But now the plan is just to reintroduce Superman without regard to a Batman and Superman movie at all."


The worrying part is this tidbit.

Like the recent Batman sequel -- which has become the highest-grossing film of the year thus far -- Mr. Robinov wants his next pack of superhero movies to be bathed in the same brooding tone as "The Dark Knight." Creatively, he sees exploring the evil side to characters as the key to unlocking some of Warner Bros.' DC properties. "We're going to try to go dark to the extent that the characters allow it," he says. That goes for the company's Superman franchise as well.


Superman is not made for brooding and dark, it works for Batman because it fits the character, Superman is the near opposite and should be treated as such.

Marvel to make an anime universe.

Entertainment: Cool. If successful watch for the year long mega crossover in 2012 and the Spider man clone saga NEVER HAPPENED just in case someone gets a smart idea to use that junk.

The superheroes of Marvel Entertainment have been turned into toys, cartoons and, perhaps most profitably, live action films like “Iron Man” and the Spider-Man series. Now they are being adapted again — this time specifically for the Japanese market.

Marvel is teaming up with Madhouse, a renowned Japanese animation studio, to develop new versions of its characters for four anime series that will premiere in spring 2010 in Japan.

Rather than simply importing American characters and concepts, said Simon Philips, president of Marvel International, the goal is to create “something that is part of the fabric of society.” This means reimagining the back stories and redesigning the look of Marvel’s stable of characters to reflect Japanese culture. “It will create an entire parallel universe for Marvel,” he said.

“Marvel today is so open-minded,” said Jungo Maruta, the president and chief executive of Madhouse, through his interpreter, Alex Yeh, the chief operating officer of the studio, during a recent meeting in New York. “Marvel gives creators freedom to fly.”

Madhouse was founded in 1972 and its talent pool includes Yoshiaki Kawajiri, the director of “Vampire Hunter D;” Santa Inoue, who created the “Tokyo Tribes” manga series; and Satoshi Kon, the director of “Paprika,” a critically acclaimed animated film about a therapeutic device that allows patients’ dreams to be experienced.

“We are very excited to be involved,” Mr. Yeh said as he showed a handful of manga-influenced drawings of Iron Man. Mr. Yeh said working on the Marvel characters is different from his past experiences. “Although they say, ‘I want Japanese anime,’ it’s not what they actually want. They want a hybrid between Japanese and Western animation.”

New Famous Five books in the works

Entertainment: Now this is brining back memories. I think I still have a slew of Enid Blyton books stashed away. It was reading the Famous Five or the other group with the parrot.

It's been a jolly long time since their last adventure.


But the Famous Five are back - and setting out to solve their first mystery in 45 years.


Julian, Dick, Anne, George and Timmy the dog return to the trail as part of a plan to revisit some of Enid Blyton's best-loved characters, her estate has announced.


The latest Famous Five story is among 20 books based on Blyton's characters to be published over the next two years.


And, as ever, there's a case for the gang to crack. Now grown-up, the friends go back to the Mystery Of The Royal Dragon Of Siam, which apparently flummoxed them as children.

20 years since Straight Outta Compton been released.

Media: Every Gen Xer is staring at that headline going I can't be this old.. I am going to be depressed for the rest of the week. Where has my life gone!

Twenty years ago this month, N.W.A's Straight Outta Compton hit the music industry like a slug to the chest. The album by Ice Cube, Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, MC Ren and DJ Yella on Eazy-E's independent Ruthless Records had critics howling that it glorified gang violence, while others praised its unapologetic, hell-raising view of living in poverty.

It also turned the spotlight on West Coast hip-hop and soon had major labels scrambling to sign every kid from South-Central Los Angeles with a story to tell. Gangsta rap would become a commercially dominant force in hip-hop for years to come.

Looks like ABC is trying to kill off "Pushing Daisies"

Entertainment: When you start reading stuff like this promoting the show.

"....The show's unabashed quirkiness was, to worried ABC officials, off-putting. When Daisies went back into production in June, some recalibration was in order. "The first part of (this) season was really tough," Fuller says. "They were like, 'Let's ground the show a little more; it can't be a cartoon. We can't have the show be weird and not get an audience.' And we were like, 'We can't have the show be boring and not get the people back we had last year.' The challenge to me was to make sure the fundamental DNA of the show didn't change."

An earlier filming start, and shorter scripts with fewer scenes, have smoothed some production wrinkles.

"To a certain extent, some of the pace has been simplified a bit," co-star Friel says. "We couldn't have gone on at that pace. It's more manageable." Pace says the pace is "a lot easier this year," with many fewer 16-hour days.

And happily, an early peek at the new season reveals Daisies has not been neutered. The season premiere, titled "Bzzzzzzz," has Chuck going undercover at Betty's Bees, a maker of honey-infused beauty products (think Burt's), where a star "bee girl" company spokeswoman has been stung to death. Morbidly funny special effects are still part of the picture. Future episodes revolve around a circus and taxidermy."


Meh, this is the start of something bad.

Democrats weigh benefit of having stars too close to candidate

Politics: Its the best thing ever! Especially if Madonna comparing McCain to Hitler is a taste of things to come to rally conservatives, but it seems some of them have a couple of brain cells working and staying away.

"....But with the John McCain camp trying to paint Obama as a lightweight celebrity on the level of Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, Obama's folks might be getting a little jittery about the star power likely to converge on Denver.

Clooney, for one, won't be part of it: He has long maintained that Hollywood stars do not do the candidates any good in the heartland, and he is said to be planning instead a September fundraiser for Obama far from Denver — in Geneva, Switzerland.

But Affleck will be at the convention, and TV talk show host Oprah Winfrey, Obama's most influential celebrity booster, plans to be in the audience when her man accepts the nomination at Invesco Field. Others expected: Spike Lee, Charlize Theron, Josh Brolin, Annette Bening, Susan Sarandon, perhaps Leonardo DiCaprio and Gwyneth Paltrow. Want even more Oscar-caliber acting power? Sean Penn will be around, at a rally organized by independent candidate Ralph Nader.

Kanye West is just one of the entertainers performing at various sideline events, as are the Black Eyed Peas, whose frontman, will.i.am, has released not one but two star-studded music videos in tribute to Obama. Sheryl Crow, Melissa Etheridge, Cyndi Lauper and Stevie Wonder are expected. Rock the Vote, a nonpartisan group, plans to feature Jakob Dylan, Fall Out Boy and NERD at one party, singer Ashanti and Broadway musical star Idina Menzel at another.

So what's a campaign to do?

"If I were in the Obama camp, I would lock Ben Affleck and Barbra Streisand away in a closet for the rest of the year," says Todd Harris, a Republican strategist and former aide to former presidential candidate and ex-"Law & Order" star Fred Thompson.

"To the degree that all of this celebrity glitz and glamour reinforces an emerging negative view of Obama, which is that he is all glitz and no experience, it could be very detrimental."

How the handle ‘the sparklies’

Democratic consultant Chris Lehane takes a more measured view. The Obama campaign, he says, is facing "the age-old conundrum for Democrats who every presidential cycle in recent memory have had the support of what I call the sparklies — only to want to downplay them once they get to the fall," because it might fuel stereotypes of Democrats as out of touch.

Mexicans deported from US face shattered lives

Immigration: The weekly AP sob story for illegal immigrants.

N. Texas district preps schools for immigration raids

Immigration: A good sign of how badly the illegal immigration problem is in America when school districts prep themselves in this manner.

Garland school district officials are taking steps to ensure their students are not left without a legal guardian should their parents be deported in an immigration raid during school hours.

The Garland school district will ask all parents to provide the names and phone numbers of six emergency contacts. The district is also instructing school officials to not allow a student board a bus if a parent is detained or deported and no one else is available to take the child home, The Dallas Morning News reported Saturday.

The plan also forbids anyone not on the emergency contact list from withdrawing the student from school in the event of a raid, the paper reported.

"We don't anticipate large-scale raids here in our district because we don't really have the industry (known for hiring illegal immigrants) that suggests this sort of thing will happen here," said Shelly Hopkins, who oversees district programs for English learners. "But we do want to support principals (in cases) where the legal guardian has been detained and deported."

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Illegal arrest roil Graham, N.C.... only if you are insane.

Immigration: Let me get this straight. Someone uses a dead person's social security number and is illegal they shouldn't been deported because its just not that serious. Oh okay then.

Marxavi Angel Martinez was a child of small-town North Carolina. She grew up here, in the rolling Piedmont region, and was a high school honor student and cheerleader before settling into a job at the Graham Public Library. At 23, she lived in a tidy white trailer at the Cedar Creek Mobile Home Park with her husband and 16-month-old son.

Her carefully tended life came crashing down in July when she was accused of using a phony Social Security number and lying on her job application.

Martinez's parents had brought her to the United States from Mexico on valid visas when she was 3 years old. But they never left the country, in violation of the law. That made Martinez an illegal immigrant, and so she was placed in federal detention, facing deportation.

Her arrest outraged many Graham residents and drew harsh criticism from immigration reform advocates.It also put a spotlight on the sheriff's office, which denied that it was waging a campaign to round up illegal workers.


Jones said that Martinez had "self-identified" her illegal status by using a dead person's Social Security number. After pleading guilty to misuse of a Social Security number, a felony, Martinez was released Aug. 13 on $25,000 bond and placed under house arrest pending deportation hearings.

...A week after Martinez was jailed, the same deputy arrested her husband on the same charges at his job at a local Biscuitville restaurant. According to friends, Martinez's parents then turned themselves in to federal authorities. All are being processed for deportation.


Whats the problem here? Illegal and blantant felony activity using a dead person's SSN. Bye.

Moveon targets AP's Ron Fournier for not bowing to Obama.

Politics: Talking Points Memo and Daily Kos are also unhappy that Fournier did not show the proper respect to Black Jesus's choice of Biden.

The popular, if controvesial, liberal activist group MoveOn.org today targeted an email campaign at Associated Press executives and the AP Washington bureau chief Ron Fournier after what it termed yet another Fournier attack on Barack Obama.

Fournier's article on Obama's selection of Sen. Joe Biden as his running mate gained wide linkage at the Drudge Report, Hot Air and numerous other conservative sites, while it was panned on liberal blogs such as DailyKos and Talking Points Memo.

The MoveOn rallying cry to its members included the following. The full Fournier article follows after that.

"Today, the Associated Press (whose articles are published in thousands of newspapers nationwide) wrote a story about Barack Obama's vice presidential pick that sounded more like right-wing FOX than an unbiased news organization. Under the headline "Biden pick shows lack of confidence," the AP wrote: 'The candidate of change went with the status quo. In picking Sen. Joe Biden to be his running mate, Barack Obama sought to shore up his weakness--inexperience in office and on foreign policy...He picked a 35-year veteran of the Senate--the ultimate insider...The Biden selection is the next logistical step in an Obama campaign that has become more negative...'

Harsh stuff.. but the right analysis on the same wavelength as the BBC's Justin Webb.

"Biden owes his selection to (Russian Prime Minister Vladimir) Putin," said French political analyst Dominique Moisi. "Russia's invasion of Georgia reinforced the American worry about international tensions." The choice of the foreign affairs veteran was intended to reassure the electorate concerned about Obama's lack of credentials, Moisi said.

In Britain, the North America editor for the British Broadcasting Corp., Justin Webb, said Biden was "Vladimir Putin's contribution to American politics—he is a necessary antidote to the Obama lack of worldly wisdom, which before Georgia was a bit academic to most Americans."


Can't wait for the boycotting of those conservative lovers at the BBC and France.

The Guardian's head cheerleader for Obama, Michael Tomasky cheers the pick along the same qualities, are they going to pick on him?

Madonna doesn't judge rape of women.

Culture: Bouncing off this new "outrage" of Obama fan likening John McCain to Hitler and Mugabe while comparing Obama to Gandhi(who didn't care for black people, but thats another story) which is par for the course for the leftist dimwit. Kyle Smith a couple of days ago pointed out this brillant observation from her faux English wannabe Dame.

Of her film on Malawi, which includes scenes about a young widow who must submit to being raped three times a day to "cleanse" her, Madonna said, "It's not my place to judge that tradition.

But to have a conversation with a village headsman and say, 'Do you realize this is spreading a deadly disease?' and have him say, 'Yes, but there's nothing I can do' is mind-bogglingly frustrating. But we drop bombs on children during wartime, so you think, 'Who's practicing black magic?' " So ritualized rape is OK if you use a condom, and anyway the real horror story is the United States.


I think that pretty much sums up Madonna world view, who are we to judge those people but America sucks.

Congrats to the USA Basketball Team

Olympics: and someone sign Rudy Fernandez from Spain's team that was shooting threes from India all night. That was just a sick display of skill but the one shooting the runner all night was just lack of defense.

University of Miami bans cars for resident freshmen

Education: Translation, U of Miami bans cars for resident freshmen because they have never fixed the lack of parking and since they are freshmen living on campus, screw them.

In his 18 years growing up in Miami, Ryan Dandes never rode Metrorail.

And in his last two years of high school at Miami Palmetto Senior, he relied on his Saturn Ion to get around.

But now, Dandes, along with the other freshmen starting classes at the University of Miami, will undergo acute car withdrawal.

For the first time, the university is banning cars for all incoming freshmen who live on campus, making it the first school in the state and one of only several around the country to compel their youngest students to take public transportation, share a car or ride a bike.

....Alan Fish, UM's vice president for business services, said the idea is to get students to change their habits early on in their academic careers. At UM, about 85 percent of incoming freshman live on campus, so the car ban means about 500 less cars on campus -- and on South Florida roads, said UM spokeswoman Marie Guma.

While the program is good for the planet, it means UM will have to forgo the revenues they usually make from parking permits. Fish said surplus parking spaces may be turned into additional housing for commuter students.

''This is about changing student and faculty habits, and ultimately changing and saving the planet,'' Fish said.

....UM Freshman AJ Graham, 17, who calls herself an amateur environmentalist, said she liked the idea of leaving a car back home in the Philadelphia area. She wheeled a bright orange bike back to her dorm Thursday.

''I decided maybe I should decrease my gas emissions. Also, I want to get around places. It just seemed like the smart thing to do,'' she said. ``I do what I can, and I like to see the university doing what they can. While I have access to a car, I'm definitely going to take the metro. I think it's just the right thing to do.


University of Miami is not exactly located in a walk about area. The option of the metrorail or the bus is taking a chance with your health especially at night.

Many Officials Reluctant to Help Arrest illegal immigrants.

Immigration: Washington Post, the illegal alien advocate paper in the nation with a misleading headline. Officials aren't reluctant to help arrest immigrants, some of them refuse to help arrest illegal immigrants.

Xbox Live in youth voting drive

Politics: Good lord, voting forms will be filled out with curse words and homophobic remarks. Most of them shouldn't be allowed to make children much less vote.

Americans will soon be able to use Xbox Live to register to vote in the November presidential elections.

Microsoft has signed a partnership with activist group Rock The Vote to boost interest in the upcoming election among young people.

As part of the tie-up Xbox Live members will also be able to take part in polls to gauge their voting intentions.

A forum on Xbox Live will also be used to gather opinions from gamers that will be shared with candidates.


I bet that will be informative.

Bear wins 2nd place in art contest

Culture: Modern Art is hard.

A piece of artwork at a South Dakota fair is now sporting a second place ribbon after it was judged for its color, composition and uninhibited expression.

However, it wasn't submitted by a descendant of Van Gogh, it was painted by a bear.

The bear is named Kobe.

The judges had no idea who the painting was done by as they were voting - they just saw it as a work of art.

An artist and volunteer at Bear Country USA submitted the painting.