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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 02:59 PM
Number of posts: 49,125

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ask yourself why?

Cartoon: The gun - by Tom Tomorrow


“Did I say I was done?”

Look at that face: “Did I say I was done?”


Right-Wing Bloggers Paid $500 for a blog post praising Ukraine’s ruling Party of Regions.

I’m shocked, shocked to find that grifting is going on in here (via):

Several conservative bloggers repeated talking points given to them by a proxy group for the Ukrainian government — and at least one writer was paid by a representative of the Ukrainian group, according to documents and emails obtained by BuzzFeed.

The model resembles a recent stealth campaign in which bloggers were paid by the Malaysian government to write favorable stories, though the Ukraine campaign appears to have involved smaller sums of money.

One of the writers who participated in the campaign, who spoke on the condition of anonymity and because of lingering qualms about the arrangement, they said, described being offered $500 for a blog post praising Ukraine’s ruling Party of Regions. The payment was arranged by George Scoville, a libertarian media strategist, and Scoville’s name was on the check, the source said.


OMG! Scott Walker Gets Grilled on EmailGate - On Fox "News"!

OMG! Scott Walker Gets Grilled on EmailGate - by Chris Wallace (!) On Fox News!

Actual journalism was committed by Chris Wallace who tried hard to get Republican Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker to actually answer a question he didn't want to answer about the almost 28,000 documents released this past Wednesday. Kudos to TPM for watching Fox News Sunday so we don't have to.

This is video you need to watch:

WALLACE: In one email that was released this week, your then chief of staff Thomas Nardelli, let’s put this up on the screen, writes campaign and county workers that you wanted to hold daily conference calls, “to review events of the day or of a previous or future day so we can better coordinate sound timely responses,” and in another e-mail county administrative director Cynthia Archer suggests that colleagues should use a private e-mail account. “I use this private account quite a bit to communicate with SKW,” that’s you, “and Nardelli, the former chief of staff.” Question: if county workers were doing nothing wrong, why should they be using a private e-mail account?

WALKER: Well, but that’s exactly to my point. you had a Democratic district attorney spend almost three years looking at every single one of those communications, interviewing people, talking to people and closed the case.

WALLACE: Did you have your own private e-mail account?

WALKER: It’s one of those where I point out district attorney has reviewed every single one of these issues.

WALLACE: But sir, you’re not answering my question.

WALKER: No, because I’m not going to get into 27,000 different pieces of information.



“It might be said that online trolls are prototypical everyday sadists"

There is now scientific evidence that Internet trolls are indeed just as mean in their private lives as they are in their digital ones, and it appears the driving force behind their trolling is good old-fashion sadism.

The research comes from a team out of Canada from multiple universities who put their findings rather bluntly. “It might be said that online trolls are prototypical everyday sadists,” the investigators state.

In other words, Internet trolls are not the nicest people in the world, but they are as old as time.


We all know a troll when we see one; it’s that person who drives the discussion off-topic, the person who says something so egregious you know they are baiting someone for a response, and when they get that response they latch on and never let go.


Since 1968, More Americans Have Died From Gunfire Than All U.S. Wars Combined

In 2012, on the PBS News Hour, Mark Shields stated that since 1968, "more Americans have died from gunfire than died in … all the wars of this country's history."

Politifact.com did a study to determine the validity of Shields's claim. Here's what they found via the
Congressional Research Service:

Another 362 deaths resulted from other conflicts since 1980, such as interventions in Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Somalia and Haiti, but the number is not large enough to make a difference.

Gunfire deaths

The number of deaths from gunfire is a bit more complicated to total. Two Internet-accessible data sets from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention allow us to pin down the number of deaths from 1981 to 1998 and from 1999 to 2010. We’ve added FBI figures for 2011, and we offer a number for 1968 to 1980 using a conservative estimate of data we found in a graph in this 1994 paper published by the CDC.

Here is a summary. The figures below refer to total deaths caused by firearms:

Politifact ruled that Shield's statement is true:

1.4 million firearm deaths trump 1.2 million deaths from war. They also note these figures refer to "all gun-fire related deaths -- not just homicides, but also suicides and accidental deaths."

Thank you, Mark Shields. Thank you, Politifact for the research.

MORE plus supporting links:

Fox Pundit: America Should Eliminate Minimum Wage Because Switzerland Doesn't Have One

Fox Pundit Asks If America Should Eliminate Minimum Wage Because Switzerland Doesn't Have One
By Heather February 22, 2014 9:45 am

Here's how host Brenda Buttner opened the show and the response from one of their regulars, Gary B. Smith:

BUTTNER: You heard it here first, that all these calls for pay hikes will backfire and now the independent Congressional Budget Office is confirming it, predicting the president's push to hike the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour will bring a half million job losses. Gary B, that's why you're saying scrap it altogether.

SMITH: I know Brenda and before people on the left say “My gosh, that heartless Gary Smith! How can you scrap the minimum wage?” I went around and searched to see if any other developed country scrapped the minimum wage. In fact, Switzerland has no minimum wage.

Now look, it's interesting. Switzerland's unemployment rate is 3 percent, so you say, well, surely then they have a high poverty rate. No. Their poverty rate is less than half ours, at 7 percent. Ours is at about 16 percent. In fact, California, which has a higher than the $7 per hour minimum wage at $8 has a 23 percent unemployment rate.

And oh, by the way, Switzerland has the highest wealth per capita in the world. My god, if Switzerland can do it, doesn't it make sense that we should try it?


Of course no one bothered to mention that Switzerland and other countries that don't have a minimum wage don't have one because their labor unions and collective bargaining agreements contain minimum compensation clauses, so it's not needed.


Al Gore On Climate Change: “The one missing ingredient may well be you, no kidding”

Al Gore brings climate change message to Kansas City
February 22
The Kansas City Star

Al Gore has been known for his climate change warnings since the 2006 film “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Former vice president Al Gore spoke about climate change Saturday during the Folk Alliance International conference at the Westin Crown Center hotel.


Gore conceded the possible fatigue some may have with his warnings, as well as the possible sense of powerlessness as to what any one individual can do to affect what appear to be vast, unchangeable trends.

“Do we really have to do this and — if the answer is yes — can we do it?” Gore said, repeating two questions he routinely hears.

“The answer to both of those questions — spoiler alert — is ‘yes.’ ”


He urged his listeners to act on an individual basis.

“The one missing ingredient may well be you, no kidding,” he said.

Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2014/02/22/4843012/al-gore-brings-climate-change.html#storylink=cpy

Flake says he hopes Brewer vetoes same-sex service denial bill

PHOENIX, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., said Saturday he hopes Gov. Jan Brewer vetoes a bill allowing businesses to refuse service to gays and lesbians.

Private sector leaders are urging Brewer to veto SB 1062 -- allowing businesses to refuse service to gays and lesbians, and possibly others -- on grounds of religious objection, the Arizona Daily Star reported.


Flake announced his opposition to the bill in a Twitter post Saturday.

"I hope Governor Brewer vetoes SB 1062," he said

Read more: http://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2014/02/22/Flake-says-he-hopes-Brewer-vetoes-same-sex-service-denial-bill/UPI-59691393121044/#ixzz2u9lk44jJ
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