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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 31,190

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Tax cuts were never intended to increase tax revenues, so stop saying that

The GOP's primary goal is to end social spending. The only way they'll ever accomplish that goal is to reduce revenues to the point where there's no money left for it, and the most time-proven way to reduce revenues is just to stop collecting so many taxes.

It's obvious we need the Keystone XL pipeline

The gas station across the street from my house hasn't cut their prices in two whole days.

Congress adjourns after two days: "There's no way we can work with that man"

WASHINGTON (Spurious News Network) -- In what may set a record for brevity, Congress adjourned a mere two days into the new session.

According to House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, the adjournment is a result of President Obama's refusal to compromise. "We passed three Obamacare-repeal bills, approved the Keystone XL pipeline, banned abortion, eliminated taxes on the rich, abolished welfare, banned Islam, repealed Obamacare again, made homelessness a federal offense, and quadrupled the defense budget. Not only did that uppity (man) veto them all two seconds after they got to the White House, he put them in a garbage can, poured five gallons of gasoline on them and threw in a lit molotov cocktail. Since there's no way we can work with that man, we closed down Congress. Fuck it. We're going home to campaign. We'll just see if America can get along without us."

Within minutes of Scalise's announcement, the tragic results were plain for all to see. The stock market instantly began a meteoric climb, with the Dow closing at 19050.20. The price of gas dropped a dime. Newspaper classified ad lines were jammed, with companies waiting as long as three hours to place "help wanted" ads. According to the head of the White House switchboard, people have been calling in to complain all day: "The public wants to know why Congress shut down on a day when it was too cold to dance in the streets. They want to know why Congress couldn't have been more considerate."

For his part, the president is unruffled. "He considers Congress to be in recess, so he's entitled to appoint judges and other officials to serve through 2016," said a White House official who refused to be identified, but he's a skinny 50-year-old black guy with a head of gray hair. "Taxes will not be adjusted, and spending will remain at current levels. We should be okay."

I've been thinking about Mario Cuomo lately, since he passed...

Fort Drum is a U.S. Army installation in upstate New York, and the home of the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), the Army's worst clusterfuck. It's the only army base that is not on federal land - the whole installation actually belongs to the State of New York, and the federal government pays them rent. (It's also the only army base that has a creek running through division headquarters, but that is a story for another time.)

Since Fort Drum was on land that belonged to the state of New York, Governor Mario Cuomo assumed the division also belonged to the state of New York. And since we were his division, once a quarter he flew from Albany to Fort Drum to speak to all the newly assigned sergeants and officers.

As I remember, he didn't really say much of anything...he told us about his state, gave us a little information about all the National Guard and Reserve units that commandeered the Back 40 every summer - as the only large Army post in the Northeast, we served hundreds of small units that needed our base's facilities for weapons qualification and all the other things you can't do in an armory next to a supermarket - explained a little about the political system in New York, and welcomed us to Fort Drum.

I can't think of another governor that did anything like that, and it was a nice thing.

How does BITCOIN have a bowl game?


NC State University beat the University of Central Florida 34-27 in the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl.

IIRC Bitcoin is one of those egalitarian things with no single owner...so where did they find the (presumably non-Bitcoin) money to fund a football game?

Aircraft emergency slide question

We've all seen movies where the plane lands at an airport, is safe to stay on until airstairs arrive or even to drive to a gate, but the crew deploys emergency slides anyway. ("Snakes on a Plane" and "Airport 1975" come to mind quickly.)

And then we have incidents like the one on Tuesday, where an American Airlines plane and a Southwest Air plane collided on the tarmac at LaGuardia. The Southwest plane lost a winglet. They unloaded the Southwest plane via airstairs and the American plane at its assigned gate.

So...what are the actual rules on emergency slide use?

Why the Grinch Stole Christmas

Every Who
Down in Who-ville
Liked Christmas a lot…

But the Grinch,
Who lived just north of Who-ville
did NOT!

The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season!
Now, please don’t ask why. You know damn well what’s the reason.
It’s not that his head isn’t screwed on just right.
Nor that his shoes are too big or too tight.
And though the Whos claim it’s the biggest reason of all,
It’s not that his heart’s even a little bit small.

No, he was workin’ retail.

He worked for long hours. He worked for low pay.
He worked to take crap from the Whos every day.
“They want it all free!” he shouted out loud.
“They won’t let you out of a thousand-Who crowd!”
“And just to be sure my life’s made pure hell,
they bring back things we don’t even sell!”

“But the thing I hate worst,” said the Grinch with a groan,
“is Christmas itself; it’s way overblown.”
“They cut down a tree and hang torches all over it.
“Them worry about fire? Not even a bit!”
“When the damn thing goes up in a roar and a blaze,
“That’s when they serve Who-road-kill in a light Who-fruit glaze.”

“When the road-kill is gone they do something worse!
“They join in a circle and sing dirty verse!”
“They sing about sex. They sing about drugs.
“They sing rotten songs ‘bout Saint Nick and his thugs!”
“The day I hate worst, is two days from now...
“I have to stop Christmas — and I think I know how!”

“It’s all about Who-beer!” he said with a grin.
“And Who-wine, and Who-Scotch and Who-Bombay-gin!
“The night before Christmas they meet at a pub.
“They blaze up Who-joints and fill up a tub.
“With Who-Purple-Jesus, and all the Whos say,
“that’s the only Jesus they’ll need on that day.”

“And when they go home, I haven’t a fear,
“They’re so high they can’t see! They’re so drunk they can’t hear!
“They’ll sleep on the floor. They won’t lock the door.
“They won’t know what happened a minute before.
“So I won’t need costumes or stunts or a ruse,
“I’ll just walk in and take all their Christmas refuse.”

And that’s just what he did. He strolled into their houses.
He stole the gizmos and gadgets and even the Who-mouses.
He took red balls and green lights and little silver bells,
And fancy Who-dresses and lip-sticks and hair gels.
He took all the presents, then just for a thrill
He even made off with the Who-road-kill!

He piled all that shit in the middle of Who-square,
in hopes that the Whos soon would be there.
“They’ll think it’s a lark but it won’t be a joke.
“when their whole joyous day goes up in black smoke.
“With a can of Who-gas, and a Who-willie-pete,
“the Whos’ rotten day will soon be complete.”

Just then, the Grinch’s Russian cousin said “Nyet!
“Dear Grinchski, I’ve got the best idea yet!
“Your Who-gas and grenades might make a big pyre,
“But nothing can beat Artillery fire!
“I have lots of rounds. I’ve got a big gun.
“I’ll shell it all flat. We’ll have lots of fun!”

The Grinch hid in a church, stood next to the light,
Turning it on would put rounds into flight.
For he knew nothing would make him feel more alive,
Than the boom and the whistle from that old two-S-five.

The morn came. The sun rose. The Whos soon appear.
Bloodshot and bleary-eyed and reeking of beer.
Then they looked on, amazed. “Why’s our shit in the square?
“We don’t remember putting it there.”

Twas then that the Grinch flipped the magical switch.
Sergei Ivanov yelled, “Son of a bitch!”
He grabbed up the lanyard, yanked with all of his might,
And the first of five hundred rounds boomed into flight.

The first round hit a plant that made bluing.
“Sergei Ivanov, what the hell are you doing?
“Up fifty, left forty and fire for effect,
“Unless your brain is addled with a latent defect.”

The rounds hit the square. The presents went splatter.
Causing the Whos to scurry and scatter.
The Grinch marveled. “Oh, what a wonderful sight! Seeing Christmas burn!
“My glorious plan’s past the point of no return!”

Just one thing to do. The Grinch lifted a pane,
So he could hear the soulful refrain
of three hundred Whos with their Christmas hearts broken,
standing there crying and sobbing and chokin’.

But that’s not what he heard. Nothing like it at all.
Why, it sounded like the Whos were having a ball!
They were singing. And dancing. Their hearts were a-prancing.
They brought out Who-beer and joints of Who-weed,
They made up a feast of roasted Who-sneed.
They gathered up the frag and put it in a bag,
then turned it into a giant Who-hag!

The Grinch started yelling “What the hell is this?”
And was showered with flowers and Who-joints and a sloppy Who-kiss.
“I blew up your things to make you feel bad,
“But this is the greatest day any of you’ve ever had.
“You should be sad, but you’re hipping and hopping...”
The Whos said, “Are you out of your mind? We get to go SHOPPING!”

Well, they pulled the Grinch out of that nice Who-ville store,
And sent him to one in Ulan-Baator.
So while you’re having a nice Christmas day,
Give a thought to the clerks who helped make it that way.
They toil in long hours down in Retailer Hell,
for money that won’t buy the stuff that they sell.
So dream of sugar plums and reindeer in flight,
and Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

You know Jameis Winston of Florida State? There are TWO of them!

The one you know is the quarterback of their football team:

The other is a pitcher for the Seminole baseball team, who has also started at left field and as their DH:

Just in time for Christmas: how to make jmowreader's Jello Salad

I know, I know...I've seen all the "atrocious food of the postwar period" websites. Jello is supposed to be the food of the devil.

Worry not, little ones: My jello salad contains no olives, no tuna, no celery, no spam...this is not the jellied atrocity of olden days, but a refreshing treat for today, delightful to both the eye and the palate. Unfortunately, no Vikings will attend your Christmas party if you leave the spam out, but the rest of your invitees will be grateful.

You need:

1. A large glass bowl. Know its capacity.
2. Small boxes of Jello in different flavors and colors. You need two of them for every quart the bowl holds, minus one - if you have a four-quart bowl, you need seven boxes. Cool so far?
3. Vanilla-flavored Greek yogurt, eight ounces per quart of bowl capacity. One quart of this will do anything up to a five-quart bowl. If you're serving people who can't eat sugar, use plain yogurt and add a quarter-teaspoon of vanilla per cup.
4. The best-quality fruit you can find, and several varieties of it. Do NOT use fresh pineapple, kiwi or papaya; there are enzymes in them that prevent gelatin from setting. If you want to put chopped nuts in, go for it. However, refrain from putting carrots, celery, onions or other vegetables in this. Pumpkin is definitely out.
5. Two big glass measuring cups.
6. Several little glass cups. You'll understand why in a second.
7. Real whipped cream, if you like.
8. To be going on this no later than the 23rd. This ain't gonna work if you start on Christmas morning.

To start:
a. Arrange the boxes of Jello on your counter until the color scheme looks pleasing to the eye. Starting at the left, make the first box, put it in the bowl, put bowl in fridge and go away until it sets hard.
b. Boil up some water and dissolve the second box in one cup of it. Now, add a cup of yogurt. Add a couple handfuls of fruit to one of the measuring cups, and pour in the jello until you have two cups of stuff in the cup. Stir a little, then ladle it on top of the jello in the bowl. Do not just unceremoniously dump this shit into the bowl, because it WILL look really bad. Gentle is best. Put it in the fridge and let it set. Put the rest of the jello in a glass cup and stick it in the fridge;
c. Make the next box of jello with hot and cold water, add different fruit, and gently ladle it into the bowl. Let it set. Reserve the leftovers in a cup.
d. through whatever you need to get to in order to use up all the jello except the last box: I think you get the idea here how this works. There's nothing hard about it, except for all the waiting.
Last step: make the last box with hot & cold waters and no fruit. Gently ladle it on top. You won't have extra of this flavor. Allow to cure until dinnertime.

Top with whipped cream, if you like. I wouldn't recommend unmolding it; this produces a shitload of jello salad and it keeps pretty well in the fridge if you leave it in the bowl. You can also do it in parfait glasses, wine glasses, individual cups, anything you like. (If you did it in custard cups, you could get away with unmolding those.

There's only one problem with Neil deGrasse Tyson

The guy is so cool everyone's going to want to be an astrophysicist...and thanks to the Republicans, we're having a hard time affording the ones we already have.
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