Sunday, December 30, 2012

Best Fried Chicken in America

This list omits Olde Dixie Fried Chicken, Pine Castle, FL, 5 miles south of downtown Orlando, for my money THE best chicken shack in town,

Forget frills and froo frou touches but come for the perfectly fried and seasoned chicken.

You'll pass 10 KFC's to eat here, I guarantee.



http://www.foodandwine.com/slideshows/best-fried-chicken-in-the-us

"Conscience wins over making money."


SEMINOLE, Fla. - As a pawn shop owner, Frank James was always a big believer in gun rights and the second amendment.  After all, it was his bread and butter business. 

But after what he saw in Newtown, Connecticut on Friday, he's had a change of heart.  "I basically broke into tears and looked up on the wall, seeing the types of firearms I am selling," James said.

At the Loan Star Pawn store in Seminole, a glass display case that once housed several Bushmaster AR-15 assault rifles is now empty.  The glass counters normally filled with handguns has been completely cleared....
The father of four said he was especially touched knowing that his youngest child, a six-year old daughter, was the same age as many of those children who were shot to death.

"I dropped my daughter off at school this morning.  That was enough for me," James said.  "Conscience wins over making money."]
Read more: http://www.abcactionnews.com/dpp/news/gun-seller-i-cant-do-it-anymore#ixzz2GYRrhhL0


Friday, December 28, 2012

151 Victims of Mass Shootings This Year

Daniel Barden, Age 7




[The total number of lives devastated by these attacks far exceeds 151, of course, starting with survivors who narrowly escaped physical harm, such as the unidentified six-year-old girl who played dead and walked out of Sandy Hook Elementary School against all odds. Mother Jones has only included photos of those injured and killed that were shared publicly by the families or survivors themselves, or for which we were granted specific permission. For essential context and findings from our in-depth investigation, also see our guide to mass shootings in America.]
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/mass-shootings-victims-2012

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Petition to Declare Westboro "Baptist" "Church" a Hate Group

[WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:

Legally recognize Westboro Baptist Church as a hate group.

This group has been recognized as a hate group by organizations, such as The Southern Poverty Law Center, and has repeatedly displayed the actions typical of hate groups.
Their actions have been directed at many groups, including homosexuals, military, Jewish people and even other Christians. They pose a threat to the welfare and treatment of others and will not improve without some form of imposed regulation.]

And let's build a Death Star while we're at it.

The Kinks; "Have a Cuppa Tea'

"I Have Become Annoyingly Partial to the Kinks."

All the Doctor's Regenerations

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Blur: "Song 2"

Scriptural Socialism


Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but those who are kind to the needy honor [God].
- Proverbs 14:31 

Hot Toddy Recipe


Ingredients
A good Irish whiskey. (Jameson or Powers is ideal)
A heat proof glass
7/8 Cloves
2 teaspoons sugar
Slice of lemon
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Preparation:
1.    Fill a kettle to boil hot water.
2.    Place a metal spoon in a glass (will prevent glass from breaking) into the glass to pre-heat it, before emptying it out
3.    Cut a slice of lemon, remove the pips and stick some cloves into the fruit.
4.    Put a teaspoon of sugar into the glass followed by a shot of Irish whiskey.  Give the whiskey and sugar mixture a bit of a stir and try to dissolve the lumps.
5.    Add boiling water and then stir.
6.    Add the lemon and additional cloves (if desired) to the mix.
7.    Wrap a wee napkin around the glass, so you don’t scald yourself.

Word for Today: Recusant

Recusant: "adjective
1.
refusing to submit, comply, etc.
2.
obstinate in refusal.
3.
English History refusing to attend services of the Church of England."

Joe Cocker: "Honky Tonk Woman"



(This and previous tune found at Suburban Guerrilla: http://susiemadrak.com/2012/12/22/hony-tonk-woman/.)

Bob Dylan: Beating the Holiday Blues

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Blogs that Educate and Amuse

Teamster Nation: http://teamsternation.blogspot.com.br/.

People I Want to Punch in the Throat: http://www.peopleiwanttopunchinthethroat.com/, featuring worst apocalypse ever: "So, last night I kissed my kids goodnight and tucked them in.  I climbed into bed and ignored the repeated phone calls from my mortgage company, American Express, Visa, Discover and Target begging me to pay the debt I'd run up in the last year.  (I had to live large during our last year on this planet - you can't take it with you, might as well spend it.)  I kissed the Hubs good bye and I finished the last good book I'd ever read.

Imagine my surprise when I awoke this morning to a bright morning (the light was from the sun, not asteroids like I had originally presumed) and birds were singing (not squawking by the millions outside my house as they dropped from the sky in death spirals) and the power was still on (I did continue to pay that bill this year, because those guys mean business!) and my kids were standing there demanding breakfast.

What happened? I wondered as I fed my children breakfast - mostly pumpkin pie and Oreos (don't judge, I thought if we survived the night we'd eat the neighbors) and started paying bills again.  I thought the world was going to end."


Origins of Christmas Traditions

Plus a torch song.  Gosh, I love old black and white movies.  The song 'Spring Will Come a Little Late this Year" comes from the movie Christmas Holiday, sung by Deanna Durbin.


[C. In the 4th century CE, Christianity imported the Saturnalia festival hoping to take the pagan masses in with it. Christian leaders succeeded in converting to Christianity large numbers of pagans by promising them that they could continue to celebrate the Saturnalia as Christians.

D. The problem was that there was nothing intrinsically Christian about Saturnalia. To remedy this, these Christian leaders named Saturnalia’s concluding day, December 25th, to be Jesus’ birthday.

E. Christians had little success, however, refining the practices of Saturnalia. As Stephen Nissenbaum, professor history at the University of Massachussetts, Amherst, writes, “In return for ensuring massive observance of the anniversary of the Savior’s birth by assigning it to this resonant date, the Church for its part tacitly agreed to allow the holiday to be celebrated more or less the way it had always been.” The earliest Christmas holidays were celebrated by drinking, sexual indulgence, singing naked in the streets (a precursor of modern caroling), etc.]
http://fablog.ehrensteinland.com/2012/12/21/the-xmas-factor/


"Daddy was a Bankrobber"

[My father and I had never managed to figure out our relationship. When I was 10, my mother ran away with me to rural Virginia, where I learned he’d been a bank robber. Obsessed with crime, I went back to him five years later, to Vancouver where he ran the seafood business he’d started after prison. He worked hard while courting ruin with reckless spending, reminding me of how, in a story he told, he pulled a near-perfect burglary but later got arrested for a bar fight. The only crime he had left was buying illegal salmon from Native Americans, which he had me do in the dead of night. When I thought I was a badass, he gave me a baseball bat and sent me to collect money, just to prove I couldn’t. I ran away to Virginia, went back to him nine months later, fled again, and finally returned to live with him after graduation.

But in the weeks before the Christmas dinner, he was different. If he drank, he talked of death. He made me promise to bury him in the mountains overlooking the ocean. He told me to lead a better life than he had. I suspected that the dinner was an attempt to keep me from traveling, but maybe he really wanted to offer me a better life.]

http://www.salon.com/2012/12/25/my_father_the_bank_robber/

http://www.lyricstime.com/the-clash-bank-robber-lyrics.html

Bono Busks on Christmas Eve

[busk [buhsk] Show IPA
verb (used without object)
1.  Chiefly British . to entertain by dancing, singing, or reciting onthe street or in a public place.]

Merry Christmas from Chiron Beta Prime

All alone for Christmas.  No family, a little food--hot dogs instead of pork chops--but do have beer so at least will imbibe a little Christmas cheer.

But at least I'm not on Chiron Beta Prime slaving for robot overlords.

"Did I say overlords?  I meant protectors."


 //

For more Christmas "fun:" How Kenny Loggins Ruined Christmas from Hyperbole and a Half and Penguin Bloody Bashing Time from someone sick and twisted as me 'cause it made me laugh, "Do you like to decapitate penguins with spiked clubs and use their heads for batting practice? If so, then you are truly a twisted individual."

Read more: http://www.methodshop.com/games/play/yeti/yeti1-blood.shtml#ixzz19LhirGr2.

Latter found at the Agonist: http://agonist.org/tina/20101224/merry_christmas_everyone.  Former from Americablog: http://agonist.org/tina/20101224/merry_christmas_everyone

"For us a child is born"

[For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.]
Isaiah 9:6

Monday, December 24, 2012

At Least, I'll Have Dr. Who This Christmas

More from Loving Christians at Westboro: All Irish are knuckle dragging Neanderthals

What a misbegotten gaggle of alleged homo sapiens, taking delight in slaughter of innocents and ascribing it their perverted of the angry old bearded straight white dude in heaven.

[It’s no news that Westboro Baptist Church is an organization of lunatics who are hell bent on promoting hate and prejudice within America today, but they may have outdone themselves with their latest stunt.

The so-called Church, who believes the 26 deaths in Newtown were “God’s will,” had planned to picket some of the funerals for those who died at Sandy Hook Elementary last week.

On Monday, Niall Boylan of Ireland’s Late FM radio show interviewed Abigail Phelps, the daughter of the Church’s founder Fred Phelps. Not surprisingly, Abi Phelps made outrageous comments while speaking with Boylan, asserting that the Connecticut tragedy only occurred because the state had legalized gay marriage....

Phelps told Boylan that she was “delighted” when she heard about the 26 deaths in Newtown, that it was all part of God’s will.

“So you’re telling me this was God’s will to kill 26 people?” asked Boylan.

“Absolutely, absolutely,” responded Phelps. “And you know as well as I do that Ireland was founded on the premise of a sovereign God.”

Boylan asked Phelps if she was proud of the fact that she was part of the most hated family in America, which Phelps not surprisingly was.

“And hopefully, the most hated family in Ireland,” Phelps added, “because you’re all a bunch of knuckle-draggin’, potato-eatin’ perverts.”

Phelps sure knows how to win over her audience!

All in all, Phelps’ rambling is insane.

“Abi, do you ever listen to yourself and see how vile and how much hatred is coming out of your mouth?”]  (Emphasis added as my Jesus weeps over deaths of children.)
Read more: http://www.irishcentral.com/news/Abigail-Phelps-of-Westboro-Baptist-Church-calls-all-Irish-knuckle-dragging-potato-eating-perverts---AUDIO-184248261.html#ixzz2G0Ds0mwa

How to Lose Friends and Influence No One: Construct a Joseph and Joseph nativity scene

[If you really want to anger religious conservatives this Christmas, apparently a gay nativity scene is just the thing to do it. Such has been found by couple Andrés Vásquez and Felipe Cárdenas of Colombia who, having created a Joseph and Joseph nativity and jettisoned the Virgin Mary for double daddy time, have caused “outrage” among the country’s religious conservatives.
The country’s Catholic Church has labeled the display, in the northern city of Cartagena, as “sacrilege.”
And thousands of Colombians have taken to social networking sites to slam the pair, with many saying they show “a lack of respect to God and all Christians.”
So why have Andrés Vásquez and Felipe Cárdenas dared stir controversy so? The couple have said they wanted to provoke a debate because they “believe in Columbia” and that tolerance will win out. Was this faith misplaced? It’s hard to tell. Certainly, protestations have been loud and made louder still by news sites like the Daily Mail cribbingcomments left on other reports so as to apparently, though not truthfully, show the level of “outrage” the nativity scene has caused.
That this so-called outrage is the height of overreaction barely needs to be said.
The historical inaccuracy of the nativity story is well known, from conflated census mandates to contortions surrounding the date of  the child’s birth, to name but a few. Nevertheless the story does mean a lot to many Christians. Even so, this Joseph and Joseph nativity makes no claim to represent the biblical story accurately (and, one could argue, the best you can hope for there is a historically authentic retelling), and to claim offense is to suggest that religious faith is so fragile it cannot withstand to be thought of in any way different from that which the church proscribes. If that is true, it is a very sad thing indeed.]
Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/a-joseph-and-joseph-nativity-scene-that-makes-a-point.html#ixzz2G0Cy5Cz2

Guns in America: Volunteer firemen ambushed and killed

[WEBSTER, N.Y. — 
A gunman ambushed four volunteer firefighters responding to an intense pre-dawn house fire Monday morning outside Rochester, N.Y., killing two before ending up dead himself, authorities said. Police used an armored vehicle to evacuate more than 30 nearby residents.

The gunman fired at the firefighters when they arrived shortly after 5:30 a.m. at the blaze near the Lake Ontario shore in Webster, town Police Chief Gerald Pickering said. The first Webster police officer who arrived chased the suspect and exchanged gunfire with him, authorities said.

"It does appear it was a trap" for the first responders to the fire, Pickering said at a news conference.]
http://www.wftv.com/news/ap/crime/firefighter-shot-at-scene-of-blaze-in-western-ny/nTd4D/

Running Gun Battle on FL Interstate 4

[LAKE MARY, Fla. —
At least two people were hospitalized following a crash and a shooting on I-4 near Lake Mary Boulevard early Monday morning, according to Seminole CountyFire Rescue.

Investigators said two cars exchanged gun fire.

One of the drivers left the scene.

Police said after being shot multiple times, the other driver crashed his car, which then caught fire....

Police said the incident started near the Sanford exit on I-4.

"[The] Crime scene is very large, two and a half miles long. We're picking up many shell casings, we're looking for additional firearms, additional weapons that may have been used," Hudson said.]
http://www.wftv.com/news/news/3-hospitalized-following-crash-shooting-i-4-lake-m/nTdz7/

I Hate the J-E-T-S

Rolling Stones: "Midnight Rambler'

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Always Distrusted that Santa Character

If you think about it, the guy commits burglaries worldwide on Christmas eve.  Finally, a courageous police department took the felon down for crime of giving out sidewalk chalk.

Way to go, blue!

[Santa was committing the heinous crime of giving chalk to children to write their wishes for the holidays on the sidewalk in front of the capitol. The children wrote horrible words like Peace, Love, Community, Harmony, and there were absolutely no dirty words because, dammit, Santa was watching. However, these words are known to be against the peace and dignity of the State of Texas.

Along come the Troopers and cuff an obviously dangerous, and completely distraught, Santa in full view of children and their parents. Several people taped the event, but those that did got their picture taken by the Troopers. I suspect that since Troopers have no honor left, intimidation and guns is all they have.

The Troopers told the crowd that Santa was being arrested for chalking the sidewalk. When the crowd explained that Santa didn’t chalk- the children did, they decided to arrest him for resisting arrest. There’s a video of that, too.

They end up with 6 Troopers, 2 patrol cars, and two Troopers in full riot gear to take Santa to the pokey.

As one man says at the end, “This is messed up, Dude.”]  emphasis added for mockery

http://juanitajean.com/2012/12/22/texas-state-troopers-declare-war-on-christmas/


Commit Kindness for Christmas

It really ain't that hard.  Just open your eyes and your heart and you will find humans who could just use a little help.  All of us need help from time to time.

[3. Aaron’s Last Wish
Imagine receiving a $500 tip for serving a family pizza.

Well, Aaron Collins’ final wish before dying this past July was just that, for his family to go out for pizza and give the waiter or waitress a $500 tip. To make his wish come true, his family launched a website and have since collected over $60,000, enough to give 125 waiters or waitresses a $500 tip!

Check out the first waitress that made Aaron’s wish a reality:]
Read more: http://www.care2.com/causes/10-random-acts-of-kindness.html#ixzz2FvR7qjiv

Philly Fans Boo Santa Claus

[File this under “only in Philly.”

Sports fans around the US know that Philly fans are among the more obnoxious – if not the most obnoxious – in the country. The local crowds have booed local legends like baseball player and Hall of Famer, Mike Schmidt, which was bad, but the standard for tasteless booing came in earlier, in 1968, when they booed Santa Claus and threw snowballs at him.]
http://americablog.com/2012/12/the-story-of-the-santa-who-was-booed-and-pelted-with-snowballs.html


Changing Our Babies' Brains

And is this a good thing?

[In our technology saturated age, children are developing an entirely different relationship to the physical world. This has implications that extend far beyond Christmas toy sales figures to obesity and maybe even evolution. We don’t understand what will happen, but at least we have this cute viral video of a child frustrated with her maddeningly low-tech iPad (it’s what you’d call a magazine):]
http://www.salon.com/2012/12/23/personal_tech_upends_the_toy_market/

Natural Resource Defense Council Green Gifts

Aww, don't those beluga whales look cute?  If you can afford to help save the whales, you can help feed hungry by shopping for gifts at Feed America.

https://www.nrdcgreengifts.org/gifts/?s_src=gg10bgd&utm_source=link&utm_medium=appeal&utm_campaign=email


Koch Cash Kills

http://kochcash.org/

[In the shadows of what was for many another disappointing international climate negotiation at COP 18 in Doha, the German energy transformation or “Energiewende” has all the signs of a modern miracle: A complete shift of the world’s fourth largest economy to 80% renewable energy and complete buy-in from all political parties—from the most conservative to most liberal. So, where is the sustainability energy Kool-Aid and how can we get some for the U.S. Congress?...

So, what is this transition plan and is it an energy and climate innovator or, as skeptics claim, a plan made to fail? The targets are impressive. TheEnergiewende includes phasing out all nuclear power by 2022 and cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 80% from 1990 levels and shifting the nation’s energy sources to 80% renewables by 2050. Additionally, the Renewable Energy Act gives priority to renewable energy in the energy grid before dirty forms of energy, securing a place for renewables in the energy marketplace. The plan also includes major expansions of the energy grid, consumer-based incentives, market-based emissions reductions and, all in all, reads as a gigantic climate and renewable energy high five.]

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Habitable Planet Within 12 Million Light Years

[More recently, astronomers have started making progress towards identifying planetary candidates that are close enough that we could eventually image them with an orbiting telescope. Just in October, astronomers announced there was a hint of a signal from an exoplanet in the light from one of the closest stars, Centauri B. Today the astronomers have released a paper that suggests there are several planets around the nearby star Tau Ceti, and one of them is likely to be within the star's habitable zone.]
http://arstechnica.com/science/2012/12/possible-habitable-zone-planet-a-mere-12-light-years-away/

Alcohol Worse on Brains than Marijuana



[Breaking the Taboo – a new documentary about the war on drugs – premiered last night at Google's New York headquarters, with stars including Katie Couric, Virgin mogul Richard Branson, Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Natalie Imbruglia in attendance. While the one-hour film is not available in theaters, it's streaming in its entirety online.

The web-only strategy is part of producer Sam Branson's plan to make the thoroughly researched anti-prohibition film a viral sensation, potentially inspiring serious drug policy reform. The filmmaker (who is Richard Branson's son) hopes to reach a wide audience for the all-star project – which includes never-before-seen interviews with former presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, narration by Morgan Freeman and a trailer starring Kate Winslet.

The film's main message is that the substantial losses of life and freedom resulting from the war on drugs, not to mention the amount of money being spent, are just not worth the paltry results: A country that continues to consume and demand drugs from a fractured global market.]
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/richard-bransons-son-challenges-the-war-on-drugs-in-new-documentary-20121207#ixzz2FpuxMBJB 

[The researchers, from the University of California, San Diego and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, performed the study on 92 16- to 20-year-olds. The scientists scanned their brains both before and after an 18-month period. Over the course of the 18 months, half of the teens, who already had an extensive track record with alcohol and marijuana, continued their vices as they had before. The other half continued to abstain or drink a minimal amount, like they too had done before the study.

In addition to the brain scans, the study also required a detailed toxicology report and substance use assessment. The teens also were interviewed every six months. Researchers did not check the teens’ cognitive ability, but simply took brain scans.

The researchers found that, after the year and a half was over, kids who had drank five or more alcoholic beverages twice a week had lost white brain matter. That means that they could have impaired memory, attention, and decision-making into adulthood. The teens that smoked marijuana on a regular basis had no such reduction.] emphasis by Alternet

Reverend Billy Says Stop the Shopocalypse



[Someone known for pulling the covers off is activist and performance artist Reverend Billy, who is holding his "The End of the World" ritual in New York City's Times Square tonight. Along with his Church of Stop Shopping, he has long preached fiery sermons against recreational consumerism and climate disaster. He is urging people to turn away from corporate commodities and fossil fuels. "I am inviting all of us to be creative, to give meaning to our lives right now," Reverend Billy says.

Apocalypses Past

[The world did not end! That is great news! Besides meaning that we will all live to see the next season of “Girls,” today’s notable absence of earthquakes, floods and other apocalyptic ephemera connects us to a long, happy tradition of losing our minds about the end of the world. From 2800 B.C. to 2012, a look back at the apocalypses that got away.]
http://www.salon.com/2012/12/21/a_brief_history_of_the_end_of_the_world/


So Much for that Apocalypse

(Found at Stay at Home Feminist Mom.)

Most Accessible Tourist Cities


[For those with disabilities, the challenges of traveling go beyond just getting to the airport on time and figuring out the TV in their hotel rooms. But fortunately, numerous destinations in the U.S. and abroad continue to work towards making travel for the handicapped as smooth as possible. We've visited quite a few spots during our travels and have come up with a list of the most handicap-friendly destinations around the world. First up, Seattle!]

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/oyster/handicap-accessible-travel-destinations_b_2293341.html#slide=1879452

Friday, December 21, 2012

"I walked in to get a pizza and I got shot."

Florida, land of the free and heavily armed citizenry, do you think this spate of shootings will deter future visitors, especially from Europe where `such carnage is almost unheard of?

["There are arguments every day, but how many people pull out a gun? When you pull a gun out and shoot somebody, your life better be in danger," White said. "He was in my face and I pushed him. His life was not being threatened."

White said he got mad because his thin-crust vegetable pie was taking longer than the 10 minutes he was promised.

"Twenty minutes later, I'm like, 'Where's my pizza?' " White said.

White, who admitted he was tired and agitated, started talking about the service. That's when he said Jock "started chewing me out."

White said the gun came out quickly. A shot rang out. The two men wrestled for the gun before the second shot was fired.

White said he still has a bullet fragment in his back.

"I got lucky," he said. "To me, that stand your ground rule … people are twisting it. He's twisting it. I walked in to get a pizza and I got shot … I'm hoping the law prevails. We'll see."]

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Oscar Niemeyer Architecture

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-chesnut/oscar-niemeyer-architecture_b_2307795.html


Niemeyer creation: "the Museu de Arte Contemporânea (Museum of Contemporary Art), which opened in 1996 and is a favorite photo subject, thanks to its flying saucer-like design"

Charlie Brown Christmas

"All 'You Need is Love:" Nut job Terry Jones challenged with song

Terry Jones, what a gift to modern political discourse and mockery; you brought a smile to my face today.

[The New York Times posted this video of anti-Islam Pastor Terry Jones being drowned out by people in Times Square singing “All You Need Is Love” by The Beatles.]
http://www.salon.com/2012/12/18/must_see_morning_clip_terry_jones_drowned_out_by_all_you_need_is_love/

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

From Juanita Jean at the Most Dangerous Beauty Salon in the World

Business as usual: Wal Mart bribes in Mexico

Let's see: Republican't philosophy protects fabulously wealthy inheritance babies like the 6 of Sam Walton's heirs worth "more wealth than the bottom 42 percent of Americans combined, up from 30 percent in 2007."

Seemingly, my great progressive savior stands ready to betray future Social Security beneficiaries--poor widows, disabled humans, and others of that ilk--by cutting benefit dollars, real actual dollars people will need tobuy food and medicine--you know, the non-essential items.

Who won the election, the guy who wants to keep using drone strikes which also kill innocents in Pakistan or the guy who would keep using drone missile attacks which create collateral damage?

[SAN JUAN TEOTIHUACÁN, Mexico — Wal-Mart longed to build in Elda Pineda’s alfalfa field. It was an ideal location, just off this town’s bustling main entrance and barely a mile from its ancient pyramids, which draw tourists from around the world. With its usual precision, Wal-Mart calculated it would attract 250 customers an hour if only it could put a store in Mrs. Pineda’s field.

One major obstacle stood in Wal-Mart’s way.

After years of study, the town’s elected leaders had just approved a new zoning map. The leaders wanted to limit growth near the pyramids, and they considered the town’s main entrance too congested already. As a result, the 2003 zoning map prohibited commercial development on Mrs. Pineda’s field, seemingly dooming Wal-Mart’s hopes.

But 30 miles away in Mexico City, at the headquarters of Wal-Mart de Mexico, executives were not about to be thwarted by an unfavorable zoning decision. Instead, records and interviews show, they decided to undo the damage with one well-placed $52,000 bribe.

The plan was simple. The zoning map would not become law until it was published in a government newspaper. So Wal-Mart de Mexico arranged to bribe an official to change the map before it was sent to the newspaper, records and interviews show. Sure enough, when the map was published, the zoning for Mrs. Pineda’s field was redrawn to allow Wal-Mart’s store.

Problem solved.]

Suffer the Little Children to Change the World With Online Petitions

What a brave new world we live in when children can affect social change through on line forums.

While not actually on the level of Twitter revolts such as the Arab Spring, to get a modern American toy maker like Hasbro to respond to the public with an online petition and update Easy Bake Ovens by making them less girly ranks as pure genius.
[PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Hasbro says it will soon reveal a gender-neutral Easy-Bake Oven after meeting with a New Jersey girl who started a campaign calling on the toy maker to make one that appeals to all kids.

McKenna Pope, 13, of Garfield, N.J., got more than 40,000 signatures on her online petition at Change.org and the support of celebrity chefs including Bobby Flay, who backed her call for Hasbro to make a gender-neutral oven and to include boys in the ads.

She was prompted to start the petition after shopping for an Easy-Bake as a Christmas present for her 4-year-old brother, Gavyn Boscio, and finding them only in purple and pink.

Hasbro invited McKenna and her family to its Pawtucket, R.I., headquarters to meet with its Easy-Bake team, and on Monday, they drove to Rhode Island from New Jersey. During the meeting, Hasbro executives showed off a prototype of their newest Easy-Bake: one that's black, silver and blue.]
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/17/gender-neutral-easy-bake-oven_n_2318521.html

Also: http://americablog.com/2012/12/hasbro-gender-neutral-easy-bake-oven.html

Similarly, recent Darden restaurant group leaders noted a sales and social media hit after folks learned about corporate plans to provide heath care as mandated by the Affordable Care Act by reducing workers hours.

Bottom line remains corporations watch the bottom line and will change pernicious policies under public pressure.

And a little child did lead them.

What cause can I create a petition for, one in suppport of lower beer prices?  The Desperate Dan Appreciation Society?

"Do we all secretly want the world to end?"

Short answer to a long question; yes.

See below.

See also Salon.com for "Do we all secretly want the world to end?"
[But why would anyone enjoy kindling this fearful response? Lissek suspects that some apocalyptic believers find the idea that the end is nigh to be validating. Individuals with a history of traumatic experiences, for example, may be fatalistic. For these people, finding a group of like-minded fatalists is reassuring. There may also be comfort in being able to attribute doom to some larger cosmic order—such as an ancient Mayan prophecy. This kind of mythology removes any sense of individual responsibility.

There’s an even broader allure to knowing the precise end date. “Apocalyptic beliefs make existential threats—the fear of our mortality—predictable,” Lissek says. Lissek, in collaboration with National Institute of Mental Health neuroscientist Christian Grillon and colleagues, has found that when an unpleasant or painful experience, such as an electric shock, is predictable, we relax. The anxiety produced by uncertainty is gone. Knowing when the end will come doesn’t appeal equally to everyone, of course—but for many of us it’s paradoxically a reason to stop worrying.]

Monday, December 17, 2012

My New Game: Which do you find more reprehensibe?

That Westboro "Baptist" "Church," alleged humans but certainly bottom feeding scum, planning to picket and spread their hate or that hacker uber group Anonymous plans to "destroy" the cult of Fred Phelps.

So much for turning the other cheek.  IMHO, idiots like the Westboroians much better met with ridicule and sarcasm as they deserve, perhaps with a side of counter protest with humour like at Comic Con or reserved silence at military funerals.

Meet these fools with disdain; turn your backs to them with your wall of silence honoring our military.

These West bat crap crazy people deserve not a minute of our time nor notice of their hatred, deserving perhaps only our pity.

So while my instincts generally lie with Anonymous, perhaps the hyperbolic use of the word "destroy" along with publishing names and addresses of cult members might lead to violence against them, thus creating the specter of creating a martyr for their cause of hate.

Perhaps whoever published this screed anonymously fails to realize the beauty of our First Amendment right to free expression guaranteed by the United States Constitution.  Those darn rights of free exercise of religion and speech protect Phelps' fanatics also.

So laugh at them or ignore them as fit, but please don't over hype a counter protest by threatening to destroy.


[The ever-hateful Westboro Baptist Church has not failed to deliver in the wake of the Newtown school massacre. The Church, notorious for picketing the funerals of fallen troops with “God Hates Fags” placards, announced Saturday that they would picket Sandy Hook elementary school, where 20 children and six adults were shot dead Friday. Tweets from the Phelps family suggest they believe the horrors in Connecticut are a punishment from God for gay marriage.

Hacker collective Anonymous was swift to respond, releasing private information of Westboro members including email addresses, phone numbers and home addresses. This video, decrying the church for spreading “seeds of hatred” was also released. It warns, “We will destroy you. We are coming.”]
http://www.salon.com/2012/12/16/anonymous_hit_westboro_baptist_church_over_sandy_hook_picket_plans/

                                                  +

Quote of the Day

Received from Sojourners daily verse.

[And the stars down so close, and sadness and pleasure so close together, really the same thing. ... The stars are close and dear and I have joined the brotherhood of the worlds. And everything's holy — everything, even me.
- John Steinbeck
From The Grapes of Wrath]

And God Laughed and Laughed and Still Laughs


President Romney: A leader to rule during the coming zombie apocalypse

Did an election happen while I went away?  I don't see any more nauseating campaign ads on my magical communicating box.  So did it end?  Who won, the guy who wants to keep Guantanamo open or the guy who wants to keep Guantanamo open and bomb Iran?

[“Romney's ready to make the deep rollbacks—in healthcare, education, social services, reproductive rights—that will guarantee poverty, unemployment, overpopulation, disease, rioting: all crucial elements in creating a nightmare zombie wasteland. But it's his commitment to ungoverned corporate privilege that will nose-dive this economy into true insolvency and chaos—the kind of chaos you can't buy back. ... Mitt's ready. He's not afraid to face a ravening, grasping horde of sub-humans, because that's how he sees poor people already."
Joss Whedon, creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, endorsing Mitt Romney for leader of the impending zombie apocalypse]

College Degrees Returning Least on the Investment

Another sign of the moral bankruptcy of our society in general: the more a job or profession contributes to the overall good in the society, the less the people get paid.

As a kid with a teacher for a father, it always seemed Santa had a predilection to leave clothes for me under the tree.  The same Santa left more toys for children of neighbors with jobs more valued by society.

Although we need bridges and engineers to build then, society also needs good teachers to nurture and inspire young minds to become doctors and engineers and such.

Also if you want a return on investment for your tuition dollars, forget about law school.  (Citation later after having my coffee}
http://salary.com/8-college-degrees-with-the-worst-return-on-investment/slide/10/

Stupid Crook News

Like my great aunt Helen used to say, some people will steal anything that ain't nailed down.  But golly, don't think i'd have the patience to steal a driveway brick by brick.

[MARION COUNTY, Fla. —
Deputies in Marion County said they've arrested a man for stealing a driveway.

Brick pavers were stolen from a home in Reddick on Thursday.

Neighbors saw men taking the bricks, but thought they had been hired by the homeowner.

Later, a neighbor called deputies after seeing someone come back to take another load of pavers.

Anthony Jones faces charges, but only for the second theft.]
http://www.wftv.com/news/news/local/deputies-man-caught-stealing-brick-driveway/nTXPj/

Vodka: Not just for breakfast anymore

[MOSCOW — 
Circus trainers claim two of their elephants were saved from the deadly Siberian cold by vodka.

Emergency ministry spokesman Alexander Davydov said Friday that the elephants were in a trailer that caught fire Thursday outside the city of Novosibirsk, forcing trainers to take them out into the bitter cold before another truck arrived to deliver them to a warm gym at a local community college.

The Komsomolskaya Pravda daily reported that trainer Leonid Labo had the animals, aged 45 and 48, drink 10 liters (2.6 gallons) of vodka diluted in warm water — and a veterinarian said later that only the tips of their ears were frostbitten.

Although scientists say that alcohol can make humans feel warmer but actually lowers their core body temperature, Novosibisk zoo director Rostislav Shilo told the daily that the vodka saved the animals from frostbite and pneumonia, without harming or even intoxicating them.]
http://www.wftv.com/news/ap/top-news/vodka-saves-elephants-from-death-in-siberian-frost/nTWjc/

Saturday, December 15, 2012

How long must I cry out Violence?

How long, Lord, must I call for help,
    but you do not listen?
Or cry out to you, “Violence!”
    but you do not save?
Why do you make me look at injustice?
    Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?
Destruction and violence are before me;
    there is strife, and conflict abounds.
Habbbakuk 1:2,3






28 dead in CT school shooting.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Scriptural Socialism


Shall one who hates justice govern? Will you condemn one who is righteous and mighty, who says to a king, "You scoundrel!" and to princess, "You wicked men!"; who shows no partiality to nobles, nor regards the rich more than the poor, for they are all the work of [God's] hands?
- Job 34:17-19

Saturday, December 8, 2012

World Won't End This Year

Editor's note: Clock to the right strictly a goof, mocking all the dooms day believes and preppers.  

Yes, we might say we do have a small possibility of the world coming to an end, but no one can calculate it nor say when.

Sheesh, think all humans feel some trepidation over their personal demise as "No one gets out o life alive," and we selfishly hope everything will end when we do.

So to embrace suicide denies the lives and loves and laughs we can make with our own free will.

Although my life may amount to words in the wind whipped away and unheard. I'm going to make them matter somehow.

After that, I don't really care.

Bring it on God; I'll face whatever She throws my way with a laugh.

[...Meanwhile, in the real world, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, a.k.a. NASA, is on the multimedia warpath to reassure American citizens that Roland Emmerich is wrong, and Planet Earth will mostly likely not experience a cataclysmic death this December.

There's plenty of confusion for NASA to address: There are several distinct theories out there predicting the world as we know it will cease to exist on December 21, 2012. Some of these theories are based on questionable readings of the I-Ching, or misguided analysis of the ancient Mayan Long Count calendar (a flawed interpretation that tends to piss off real-life living Mayans and the researchers who are most familiar with the calendar). Some say the world will end when we all get sucked into a black hole. Others claim that in a couple weeks Earth will collide with the nonexistent rogue planet "Nibiru," thus ruining everything forever. Pseudo-scientific doomsday speculation has gained so much attention over the years it's ingrained itself into our pop-culture: The theories have provided the basis for the aforementioned big-budget John Cusack movie, inspired college courses, and earned a special on Fox News this past November.

Though this all might seem like little more than a collection of laughable fringe superstition, promulgation of these beliefs do have troubling real-world consequences. "I get 1-2 [questions] a month from a person who self-identifies as 11-12 years old, who is contemplating suicide," David Morrison, a senior scientist at the NASA Astrobiology Institute, told ABC News. (Speaking to a USA.gov blogger, Morrison later said that he gets a message at least "once a week" from "a young person...who says they are ill and/or contemplating suicide because of the coming doomsday.") Morrison also highlighted a letter he received from someone claiming to be a middle school teacher in California, who wrote that parents of a student said they were going to kill their kids and themselves before the 2012 apocalypse.]

Media Stereotypes Females

Even more insidious than the unnatural proportions of Barbie dolls which perhaps leads girls to eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia in pursuit of impossible figures, images seen in scenes on our televisions sets socialize girls and female in ways to he detriment of them developing their own personalities, instead assuming the gender roles watched.

[The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media (founded in 2004 by the Oscar-winning actress and United Nations special envoy) has published a new report (PDF) detailing the stereotypes, barriers, and straight-up exploitation that still define how badly women and girls are treated on screen. The study takes a deep dive into prime-time television, as well as children's programming and family-friendly films. Women are scarcer in prime-time shows and family films, and those films depict "fewer women in prestigious occupational positions," the study notes. "Females are not only missing from popular media, [but] when they are on screen, they seem to be there merely for decoration."]
http://www.motherjones.com/media/2012/11/geena-davis-institute-women-girls-are-stereotyped-sexualized-hollywood

Why did we never see female teenage mutant ninja turtles?




Say What? Expensive coffee from elephant rectums!

Un-fracking believable.  Normally, good taste and modesty would deter me from possting anything so disgusting,

Nevertheless in this case that demonstrates just how decadent our consumer culture has become, gots to post this one.

Golly, plain old espresso from the grocery store satisfies my coffee cravings.  For the key word in quote below, find dung.

[GOLDEN TRIANGLE, Thailand —

In the lush hills of northern Thailand, a herd of 20 elephants is excreting some of the world's most expensive coffee.

Trumpeted as earthy in flavor and smooth on the palate, the exotic new brew is made from beans eaten by Thai elephants and plucked a day later from their dung. A gut reaction inside the elephant creates what its founder calls the coffee's unique taste.

Stomach turning or oddly alluring, this is not just one of the world's most unusual specialty coffees. At $1,100 per kilogram ($500 per pound), it's also among the world's priciest.]  emphasis added to increase ick factor.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Scriptural Socialism

12Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. 13But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, 14and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Defining Myself

Although ever'one in the whole damn world seems able to define me just because of now walking with a walker, in just the same way I have fought to stay out of a wheel chair for over 32 years I have also struggled to define myself: disabled, differently-abled, handicapped, gimp, geek, cripple, one who walks with a non standard gait subsequent to a spinal cord injury

Lately figured out becoming me a cool thing to be and so will let my life speak for me, damn your eyes all you womens who ain't given me a second look while they date boys or psychopaths who steal from them, all you people who jump to help and judge and expect me to grovel with gratitude for my right to live with dignity as a human being.

[Zack de la Rocha clearly recalls how the hurt, anger and cruel surprise — the compound whack of ignorant racism — literally knocked the speech out of him. The singer and lyricist of Rage Against the Machine was in high school: a solitary Mexican-American teenager in a classroom of bone-white faces, a self-conscious exception to the privileged homogeneity of the Los Angeles suburb of Irvine, California. A teacher was leading a discussion about rock formations on the state's Pacific coast.

"He was describing one of the areas between San Diego and Oceanside," de la Rocha says, "and as a reference to this particular area of the coastline, he said, 'You know, that wetback station there.' And everyone around me laughed. They thought it was the funniest thing that they ever heard."

De la Rocha's voice — usually a rapid-fire thing, a formidable weapon of debate in conversation and on the three Rage albums he has made with guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk — drops to a measured snarl: "I remember sitting there, about to explode. I realized that I was not of these people. They were not my friends. And I remember internalizing it, how silent I was. I remember how afraid I was to say anything."]  Emphasis added because I ain't afraid no more.
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/the-battles-of-rage-against-the-machine-19991125#ixzz2EI1mbD8a 
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

Small Victories: i Sat. I Shat. I Stood Up.

Not quite, "I came.  I saw. I conquered, (Veni, vidi, vici)," but a significant victory all the same--if you have a balky lower back that last month would not let you get off the floor.

It even gets funnier if you played cards with a mother who used to say to a procrastinating player, "Shit or get off the pot."

Yay me!

Now only have to get these people to do their job and get me a discharge plan so I can go home and they can quit milking Medicare and life will get good again, or at least get back to watching Have Gun Will Travel on Encore Western channel.

What would Paladin do?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

RIP Hector Camacho

Before ridiculing the behavior of boxer Hector "Macho" Camacho, let's take a moment to praise his boxing talent and consider that, as a performer seeking to feed his family, he had to market himself with what we call gimmicks, admirably recounted by George Diaz, http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/columnists/os-george-diaz-macho-camacho-funeral-1201-20121130,0,883748.column  Would quote but this computer balky at best and hates me at worst.)

As humans, we tend to see these and other public indiscretions of a famous individual as sum total of who they are.nevertheless, this presumption prevents us from realizing we see but a portion.  Also, too many imbued with fame and fortune whether through athletic talent like Mr. Camacho or pathetic and vacuous Kardashians created by our celebrity culture, become the gimmicks or circus act they use to make money.

Used to wish fame and fortune for myself, nevertheless this stay in medical rehab facility reminds me becoming myself a pretty good thing to be.

Besides, some will celebrate my passing, and not in the good way either.  At least, people noted he riotous wake of this "Macho" man.



[Hector "Macho" Camacho can't rest in peace just yet.

catfight involving the slain boxing legend's alleged lover, his official girlfriend and sisters marred Tuesday's wake in honor of the former world champion at the Puerto Rico Department of Sports and Recreation.

The somber atmosphere took a violent turn when Cynthia Castillo, a local woman claiming to be Camacho's partner at the time of his death, removed the casket veil covering his face and kissed him on the mouth, El Nuevo Dia of Puerto Rico reported.]
http://articles.nydailynews.com/2012-11-28/news/35417113_1_hector-camacho-fernandez-casket

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

My Christmas Strategy: One for me, one for them

Despite the admonitions of my sister who still talks to me that her daughters need nothing but love from me, put pressure on myself to give them something for them to have fond memories of me to pass on to their offspring as have tried to pass on the memories of my great aunt Helen, a fabulous woman from Mount Pilot, NC.

Without great financial resources, this proves difficult.

As for other sister who deigns not to speak with me, send her a bottle of wine to her local liquor store so she has to pick it up while she gives me nothing, so I feel less pressure buying for her and her 2 sons.  In fact, feel resentment which can make Christmas an emotionally trying time.  To solve this, I start with a gift for myself.

One for me, one for them works fine for me mentally.

As a frugal man, I rend not to buy clothes until my old ones disintegrate.  How many black t-shirts can 1 man own and wear?  Retired now so only need 1 pair of shoes and only replace when absolutely full of holes.  So this year splurged on a new pair of shoes or "kicks" as kids today call 'em.

Although generally not a shopper by brand but rather price, went back 4 decades to buy the trendy shoe of my youth, Converse Chuck Taylors.

As the prophet wrote, truly "There is nothing new under the sun."

What was once old fashioned would seem to have become fashionable again.

And comfy too.