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agentS

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Current location: Overseas
Member since: Wed Jun 18, 2008, 08:24 AM
Number of posts: 1,299

Journal Archives

F***** by the party!!!

As everyone knows by now, Markey won the Senate seat that was Kerry's, on Tuesday.
His opponent lost by 10 points. Gomez, the Repub candidate, knew he was going to lose the race as of at least Monday, and let his feelings be known about to the reporter.
http://www.wbur.org/2013/06/24/massachusetts-senate-5
Gomez tried to persuade a Democrat who does not like Markey to vote for him instead. The man told Gomez he cannot, because he does not want to give Republicans another vote in the Senate.
Gomez came back out to the street and said that if Republicans are to have a future, their party must undergo a transformation.

“See, one of the things we’re going to do, we’re going to change part of the Republican Party,” Gomez said, keeping up a brisk pace as he spoke excitedly. “They’re wrong on too many issues. I mean, you know, you gotta realize, they gotta realize we’re in the 21st century. Gay marriage — more people approve of gay marriage than don’t. They gotta come around on that. They gotta come around on immigration reform. They gotta come around on expanded background checks. That’s just the way America feels.”

People weren't just voting FOR Markey, they were also voting AGAINST the GOP.
Gomez probably would have lost anyway even if his character and stances were better, but the margin of victory would not have been as close IF THE GOP weren't so god-awful backwards and racialized! He was essentially F****** and knifed in the ass by his own party!
The comparisons to Brown, whose newcomer appeal helped propel him to victory in 2010, were inevitable.

But Democrat Elizabeth Warren, who ousted Brown from the Senate in the fall, found success wedding her opponent to the national GOP.

And Markey pursued a similar strategy from the get-go — tying Gomez to Washington Republicans on abortion, guns and Social Security.

I see potential here; if the Rethugs want to run against Peolsi (re: the election in South Carolina), then the DEMS should run against practically half the GOP! What's good for the goose is good for the gander, eh?
PS: Conservative Latinos, or those that don't want to run as Dems, would probably be better off running as Independents or in another party that ain't run by wackos.

"My God, it's full of planets!" - Kepler hints at over 250 new potentially habitable worlds

http://phl.upr.edu/press-releases/mygoditsfullofplanetstheyshouldhavesentapoet
NASA Kepler released last month 18,406 planet-like detection events from its last three year mission to search for exoplanets (Kepler Q1-Q12 TCE). Further analysis is required by the NASA Kepler Team and the scientific community to extract and identify true planets, including those potentially habitable. The Planetary Habitability Laboratory @ UPR Arecibo (PHL) performed a preliminary analysis and identified 262 candidates for potentially habitable worlds in this dataset. These candidates become top priority for further analysis, additional observations, and confirmation.

The Kepler Threshold Crossing Event (TCE) dataset consists of a list of stars with 18,406 transit-like features that resemble the signatures of transiting planets to a sufficient degree that they are passed on for further analysis. Many of these objects are false positives caused by stellar transits or other physical and instrumental conditions not related to planets. Those that pass additional tests are added to the Kepler Objects of Interest (KOI) list, currently at 2,320 candidates, for further validation. Finally, those verified by more astronomical observations supplement the 132 Kepler confirmed planets so far.

Only the best TCE objects, those with more than three transit events, were selected for the analysis in accordance with the PHL’s Habitable Exoplanet Catalog (HEC) criteria. This reduced the sample to 15,847 objects eliminating a known instrumental bias for one-year period planets. Unfortunately, this also eliminated many interesting objects but more analysis will be required to sort out longer period planets. HEC identified and sorted with the Earth Similarity Index (ESI), a measure of Earth-likeness, 262 potentially habitable planet candidates. These include four subterrans (Mars-size), 23 terrans (Earth-size), and 235 superterrans (super Earth-size).

The preliminary analysis performed by the PHL helps to sort out and rank the best candidates for further exploration in NASA Kepler’s TCE. Twenty-four of these have an ESI over 0.90 and therefore are quite Earth-like according to what is measurable. For example, the best candidate is an Earth-size planet in a 231 days orbit around the star KIC-6210395, which receives about 70% of the light that Earth receives from the Sun. More are expected with a similar period to Earth but they will be added later to HEC after further analysis. It will still be remarkable if only 50% of these turn out to be real planets.

It is estimated that there are millions of Earth-like planets in our Galaxy. However, most of these are out of our observational abilities for the coming decades, and probably many centuries. Only a small fraction of these planets, the ones that transit their star, are good enough for better characterization and to confirm their potential for life. This result suggests that there are over 8,500 transiting very Earth-like planets within reach of NASA Kepler-like missions, assuming the Kepler field is representative of all the sky. This sample is enough to occupy astronomers for many years.



Your tax dollars at work for once.

While these are listed as candidates, more analysis will be needed to determine how closely Earth-like the candidates legitimately turn out to be. That will require other telescopes, some of which are launching next year, as well as further observation. So while we yet cannot say we've found an 'Earth-2" we are damn close to finding 1 or more analogs.


The picture here shows the general sizes of the detected planets. One thing to note is that it's not mentioning exomoons, of which are Mars-size. There's a list at this page below if you wanna get your "Pandora" on. It's at the bottom, real easy to spot (in case some slow-witted Freepers are reading).
http://phl.upr.edu/projects/habitable-exoplanets-catalog/data/kepler-tce

There's a war on Christmas--- in Israel!!!

Terror lurking in a Christmas tree? Israel tries to ban non-Jewish celebrations

I wonder what those wacky FOX News hosts will say about this?


But who would imagine that Israeli Jews could be so intimidated by the innocuous Christmas tree?

This issue first came to public attention two years ago when it was revealed that Shimon Gapso, the mayor of Upper Nazareth, had banned Christmas trees from all public buildings in his northern Israeli city.

Complete with a 'Grinch'! The holidays never disappoint!

Although neither Gapso nor the government has published census figures to clarify the city’s current demographic balance, most estimates suggest that at least a fifth of Upper Nazareth’s residents are Palestinian. The city’s council chamber also now includes Palestinian representatives. But Gapso is not alone in his trenchant opposition to making even the most cursory nod towards multiculturalism. The city's chief rabbi, Isaiah Herzl, has refused to countenance a single Christmas tree in Upper Nazareth, arguing that it would be “offensive to Jewish eyes”.

That view, it seems, reflects the official position of the country’s rabbinate. In so far as they are able, the rabbis have sought to ban Christmas celebrations in public buildings, including in the hundreds of hotels across the country.

A recent report in the Haaretz newspaper, on an Israeli Jew who grows Christmas trees commercially, noted in passing: “hotels – under threat of losing kashrut certificates – are prohibited by the rabbinate from decking their halls in boughs of holly or, heaven forbid, putting up even the smallest of small sparkly Christmas tree in the corner of the lobby.”

In other words, the rabbinate has been quietly terrorising Israeli hotel owners into ignoring Christmas by threatening to use its powers to put them out of business. Denying a hotel its kashrut (kosher) certificate would lose it most of its Israeli and foreign Jewish clientele.

sorry, forgot link. here it is: http://mondoweiss.net/2012/12/lurking-christmas-celebrations.html
So here's your realtime, realworld War on Christmas, right winger Free-Bagger nutzos! What are you gonna do, criticize Israel? I dare you, double dawg dare you!
C'mon, what's more important? Israel having a free pass, or Christmas trees? What's really your priority?

My bet is that they will stay silent. What's yours?

Another Day, another gun nut at a school...

What is the deal this week? A new meme? Some kinda 'throwback' event to the 90s with all the school shootings and gang wars? Is there something going around Lolzcats or something?
A man has been arrested with 47 guns in Indiana on Saturday, after he threatened to "kill as many people as he could" in yet another gun incident to hit the United States this week. Von I. Meyer, was reportedly arrested with 47 guns as well as hoards of ammunition hidden all over his house in Cedar Lake, Indiana on Saturday, according to the Washington Post.

The 60 year old man has been described in reports as "disturbed" after threatening to go to Jane Ball Elementary School and "kill as many people as he could before police could stop him."

According to the Post, Meyer also had threatened his own wife, saying he would set her on fire after she fell asleep. Following his arrest it has been reported that prosecutors have filed formal charges against Meyer for felony intimidation, domestic battery, and resisting law enforcement.

Meyer's residence is allegedly just a minute's walk from the Jane Bell Elementary School, which he threatened to attack.
Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/man-arrested-with-47-guns-threatened-another-elementary-school-massacre-86747/#qyYJZ3KfLvgUytp1.99


47 guns??? Seriously? I got no problem with someone owning A gun, or 10 guns, but if you got 40+ you better own a store or be a museum collector.
On another thread here on DU, there is a discussion on 'responsible' gun owners/ownership. Obviously, this guy started off his ownership days 'responsible' but apparently he went 'off the rails' at the some point in the past month or so.
That's fundamentally the problem here, right? How do we keep the 'responsible' gun owner from turning into this guy, or the last guy, or the guy from Tuesday last week? Or, how do we keep the 'responsible' gun owner's kids from going on a rampage?

Politico: Romney's ORCA (vote tracking program) sank his GOTV operation

There are few earlier threads on the ORCA system, in which one Repub aide said it was "harpooned and dead on the beach".
In this article, we find out a little more as to why.
The system was not shared with officials outside a small group in Boston and was kept largely a secret until the immediate lead-up to Election Day. The system was beta-tested on its own but not within technical infrastructure of the Boston TD Garden, where the Romney campaign’s massive War Room was set up. That accounted for a number of the problems, officials conceded, even as they protested to POLITICO the depth of the Election Day meltdown.

Three sources described the campaign to POLITICO as “flying blind” on Tuesday in terms of targeting, with ORCA — which had a pricetag of hundreds of thousands of dollars — failing. There was another sizable allocation of funds for emergency robocalls to goose turnout late in the day in key areas identified by ORCA, but those were never put to widespread use.

Uh, wouldn't it have been a smart idea to check whether the system would work in the MOST IMPORTANT LOCATION before full roll-out? I mean, you know, to make sure all hardware and software would be working? It's like putting a Saturn V rocket together in the backyard and setting it up without testing the guidance system.
“A lot of data came into the system that we have on file now,” he said, although he couldn’t answer questions about whether it was continuous throughout the day or simply at the end. He insisted that 91 percent of all counties reported into the system, 14.3 million voters were accounted for as “voted,” and 5,397 reports of voting issues were reported, such as broken machines and a dearth of ballots.

“Look, we experienced challenges through it,” Moffatt said, but he insisted, “It allowed us to continue our GOTV efforts and allowed us at such a massive scale to track voting irregularities.” Like where? “Florida, Ohio. We were seeing different things coming in through the alerts.”

I guess they wanted to make sure their election fraud tricks were working. Too bad, they weren't- even with crappy voting machines on their side.

But then, the TRUTH comes out on page 2!
One Republican source with close ties to the operation said the system essentially appeared to have crashed on the first wave of information coming in, and never managed to get started again. It was down throughout the day, and while it may have been gathering numbers, it never provided the output in terms of target guidance it was supposed to, said a source.

“The problem is not only that it doesn’t work on Election Day,” said the source. “The problem is, you divert an enormous amount of human and financial resources over many months to . So that means they’re not doing anything else for turnout.”

Several Romney backers stressed that, based on the outcome on Nov. 6, this system breakdown was not the reason they lost. But it was a striking meltdown of a project the campaign heralded as a key ingredient to success. One Republican who helped operate the system from Boston on Election Day called it a near-complete “failure” and an “amateur operation.” Throughout the morning, volunteers in the states called frantically back to headquarters to alert campaign officials to ORCA’s deficiencies: Users’ login information and data entry failed and a backup phone system locked out many campaign workers and failed to confirm that information from others had been received. Cries for help from the campaign help desk went more or less unanswered.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1112/83653_Page2.html#ixzz2BoxZFAYx


Romney to ORCA: You're doing a heckuva job!
Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1112/83653_Page2.html#ixzz2BoxKckGF

Racists Riot at Ole Miss University over Obama's victory!

http://www.wmctv.com/story/20025451/riots-brew-on-ole-miss-campus
Photos show huge group of people on the campus, some even lighting Obama-Biden signs on fire in response to the presidential election results.

Ole Miss journalism student Margaret Ann Morgan posted to Twitter, "Onlookers say people- black, white, etc- throwing rocks at cars."

She continued, "Students of all races yelling on rebel drive. Lots of racial slurs."

Morgan also mentioned she is ashamed at what she saw and heard on her campus following the election.


Keep it classy, Ole Miss...

some photos can seen here, including the guy burning the political sign. http://storify.com/actionnews5/riots-brew-at-ole-miss

Mediaite: Breitbart writer begs Libertarians to vote for Romney. Ain't gonna happen...

In a two-part column over at Breitbart’s Big Government, Kurt Schlichter practically begs libertarians to “support our Constitution” and vote for Mitt Romney this November in order to avoid not only the “destruction of this country” by way of a second Obama term, but also to avoid the destruction of libertarianism by way of the Libertarian Party becoming a pariah.

The begging will not work, especially when it comes with the usual platitudinous overtures to America and the Constitution being at stake; and the suggestion that not supporting Romney is to selfishly disregard of the Constitution in the name of ideology. No matter how you dice the logic, a committed Republican accusing libertarians of not supporting the Constitution is nothing short of laughable.

http://www.mediaite.com/online/breitbart-writer-begs-libertarians-to-vote-romney-sorry-it-aint-going-to-work/
Why should they vote for Romney? They got their own candidate, AND Romney's dumbass RNC squad slammed their hopes shut and they left the party! I say to the Libertarians "haven't you had enough of being slapped in the face by these guys?"

Will the Libertarians and those conservatives angry with Romney be enough of a factor in the election? Will they be compared to Nader and the (stolen) election in 2000?

Convention things and trends you have noticed so far *thread*

One big thing I have noticed so far is that the speakers and videos talk about the candidate MORE and the opposition candidate in smaller amounts. Compare this to the Republican Convention in which they spent most of the time harping on Obama and very little time talking up their candidate and less time talking about their own policies.
This may change as the week goes on but I doubt it's gonna be a "Romney bash" event.

What things have you, fellow DUers, have noticed?

Dallas pastor stands up for gays and the President (TP)

This is from Think Progress. It's a little old but recent. If it's a double post I apologize. The pastor gives an impassioned plea to his congregants, telling them that the President is not a pastor and must follow the Constitution, not the Bible.
[link:|

Let's Play- Outrage Roulette! Round 5!

What do you think the Right Wing machine will be mad about this week? To be considered an "outrage" the issue must result in
1. Conservative media being mad about something
2. Presidential candidates talk about it
3. Democrats must talk about it, debunk it, or laugh at conservatives for bringing the issue up.
4. The media must go bananas over it.
Once again, write down the topic and the number of Crazy Credits or CC for short you want to assign as a bet.
Last week we had the Hillary Rosen issue, the Catholic League issue, and the Oil drilling issue. What will they be mad about this week?

For example: I bet on Bill Maher making a joke about...Catholics... for 10CC. He's been in the news a lot lately and the Repub outrage machine is all over the place these days. I really didn't expect them to go after Trayvon Martin supporters.

Place your bets!
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