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Member since: Fri Nov 12, 2004, 07:39 AM
Number of posts: 44,660

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Update: Over 400 Reported Injured in Meteor Strike Above Central Russia

Source: NDTV

Over 400 reported injured in meteor strike above central Russia

Edited by Sabyasachi Dasgupta | Updated: February 15, 2013 14:07 IST

Moscow: A meteor streaked across the sky over Russia's Ural Mountains on Friday morning, causing sharp explosions and reportedly injuring more than 400 people.

Damage was reported in six towns, according to news agency AFP.

Fragments of the meteor fell in a thinly populated area of the Chelyabinsk region, the Emergency Ministry said in a statement. (Watch video of meteor shower)

Interior Ministry spokesman Vadim Kolesnikov said 102 people had called for medical assistance following the incident, mostly for treatment of injuries from glass broken by the explosions.

Reports conflicted on what exactly happened in the clear skies. A spokeswoman for the Emergency Ministry, Irina Rossius, told The Associated Press that there was a meteor shower, but another ministry spokeswoman, Elena Smirnikh, was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying it was a single meteorite.

Read more: http://www.ndtv.com/article/world/over-400-reported-injured-in-meteor-strike-above-central-russia-331163

Hi, DU. My Mom...

is beloved by anyone whoever met her. She has been a great supporter of me and my ambitions and of my siblings (three boys, one girl) our whole lives (she's 73). She is the one most responsible in my life for installing humanistic and liberal values in me.

This morning she goes in for surgery at 7 a.m. ET to replace two heart valves (mitral, aortic) and repair a third (tricuspid). No it is not lost on her the humor of it being the day after Valentine's Day.

She is in a brand new facility, one of the best in the nation, and her doctor is a leading cardiothoractic surgeon in the country. It is, however, a serious 4-5 hour procedure and the success rate is 85-90%, lower than one would like to see for major surgery.

Please keep her, a Vietnam-era Army Wife and retired newspaper editor, in your thoughts and I will update tomorrow. Send good vibrations. <-- 3 Heart Valves

By the way, who is paying for all this? You are, through the government. Medicare and Tricare For Life.

(I told her things could be worse... she could have taken a Carnival cruise. Also, I showed her the Honey Badger viral video for the first time tonight. She had never seen it and thought it was hilarious.)

CBS News: Marco Rubio's "Water Bottle-Gate" Moment

Source: CBS News

Marco Rubio's "water bottle-gate" moment
February 12, 2013

In the official GOP rebuttal to President Obama's State of the Union speech tonight, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., made a passionate case for the limited role of government in American society. But the gist of his message was lost on the Twittersphere about 11 minutes in, when the visibly overheated senator broke away for a quick sip of water.

Rubio, who had mopped his brow a few times previously during the speech, was in the midst of maligning what he called "false choices" Mr. Obama laid out between big government and big business. But he interrupted his thought to grab a small water bottle apparently at his side, ducking down and nearly out of of the camera frame, before taking a sip and continuing with his remarks.

Commentators immediately pounced: On CNN, Wolf Blitzer was captured saying, "uh oh" as Rubio put the water bottle down again, and gifs of the moment immediately popped up on Twitter.

Read more: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-250_162-57569097/marco-rubios-water-bottle-gate-moment

Marco Rubio Thirsts For Truth!

Credit: Tracy Knauss, Edward Margerum, Paul Shoffner

David Shuster: "Obama speech tonight more confrontational with GOP than previously thought..."

@DavidShuster: Obama speech tonight more confrontational with GOP than previously thought. He will blame sequester cuts + econ damage on them. #TAN

@DavidShuster: Now clear Obama sees previous bipartisan gestures as not getting him anywhere. Hardball politics in this speech. Dems will be pleased. #TAN

Senate Passes Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization

Source: The Hill

Senate passes VAWA reauthorization

By Ramsey Cox - 02/12/13 02:55 PM ET

The Senate voted 78-22 to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) on Tuesday.

The Senate action now sends the bill to the House. Both the House and Senate passed their own versions during the 112th Congress, but neither chamber took up the other's version.
Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said he is hopeful that this year the House will take up the Senate-passed reauthorization of VAWA.

“This is a good bill,” Leahy said ahead of the vote Tuesday. “It makes needed changes recommended by victims and those who work with them everyday.”
More than 20 Republican senators joined with Democrats to pass the legislation.

Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/282557-senate-passes-vawa-reauthorization

2 Charged with Murder in Hadiya Pendleton Slaying (Honor Student Who Performed at Inauguration)

Source: Chicago Tribune

2 charged with murder in Hadiya Pendleton slaying

Staff report
6:48 p.m. CST, February 11, 2013

Two men have been charged in the shooting death of 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, prosecutors said.

Charged were Michael Ward, 18, and Kenneth Williams, 20, both of Chicago. The two face charges of first-degree murder, attempted murder, and aggravated battery with a firearm in the attack that also left two other teens wounded.

Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy and other top police officials were expected to speak about the charges at the news conference at Area Central police headquarters this evening. Earlier today, McCarthy said charges were expected this evening.

"We will bring this all to closure, probably sometime this evening we're anticipating hopefully that we'll have charges," McCarthy said at a news conference with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez to announce a push for stiffer jail terms for people convicted of gun crimes.

Read more: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-hadiya-pendleton-charges-20130211,0,631238.story

"Not Chris Dorner..."

(From Facebook; don't have attribution.)

Tom Tomorrow: Professor Droney

Daily Kos Link: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/02/11/1185328/-Professor-Droney

Visit TT's Fabulous Online Emporium: http://www.topatoco.com/merchant.mvc

The GOP Plan to Flush Your State’s Economy Down the Toilet


The GOP Plan to Flush Your State’s Economy Down the Toilet

The new “red-state model” seeks to turn your state into Mississippi.

February 11, 2013 |

The GOP has plans for a comeback. But it may cost you a lot. The idea is to capitalize on recent Republican state takeovers to conduct an austerity experiment known as the new “red-state model” and prove that faulty policies can be turned into gold.

There will be smoke. There will be mirrors. And there will be a lot of ordinary people suffering needlessly in the wake of this ideological train wreck.

We already have a red-state model, and it’s called Mississippi. Or Texas. Or any number of states characterized by low public investment, worker abuse, environmental degradation, educational backwardness, high rates of unwanted pregnancy, poor health, and so on.

Now the GOP is determined to bring that horrible model to the rest of America.

- snip -

Republications have been eyeing the Tar Heel state with interest due to its recent swing status in presidential elections. The state was also the target of a gerrymandering strategy that worked out wonderfully for the Republicans, but not so well for democracy. Sam Wang, the founder of the Princeton Election Consortium, wrote recently in the New York Times about how Republican redistricting thwarted Democratic voters:

"Although gerrymandering is usually thought of as a bipartisan offense, the rather asymmetrical results may surprise you....I have developed approaches to detect such shenanigans by looking only at election returns. To see how the sleuthing works, start with the naďve standard that the party that wins more than half the votes should get at least half the seats. In November, five states failed to clear even this low bar: Arizona, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. ... In North Carolina, where the two-party House vote was 51 percent Democratic, 49 percent Republican, the average simulated delegation was seven Democrats and six Republicans. The actual outcome? Four Democrats, nine Republicans — a split that occurred in less than 1 percent of simulations. If districts were drawn fairly, this lopsided discrepancy would hardly ever occur."

The lesson of North Carolina tells you that the GOP red-state model is based, first and foremost, on efforts to flagrantly disregard the will of the people. NC’s discount-store mogul Art Pope, a longtime GOP donor and champion of free-market fundamentalism, has been appointed state budget director by the new Republican governor, Pat McCrory. In an incredible display of money buying political influence, Pope has gone well beyond his donor-counterparts in other states. Instead of just funding the politicians he wants, he has gone for direct rule by occupying government himself. Tax repeal is the centerpiece of his announced plans, but his hatred of public investment means he has much more than that in store for one of the most progressive states in the South. Pope is said to be more powerful than the governor, giving rise to the term “Pope administration” to describe the new political reality.


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