Posts filed under ‘Dumbed Down’
A homeowner in Wyandotte, Oklahoma is awaiting damage assessments after an artillery shell entered his home.
It was fired at the Oklahoma Full Auto Shoot and Trade Show on Saturday, around 3 miles a way.
Homeowner Gene Kelley could not fathom what he found after hearing a large crash inside his home.
“It’s unbelievable,” Kelley said. “Unless you were here to see it or see the pictures I’ve got, you would not believe how huge this thing is.”
A 105 howitzer artillery shell, 14 and a half inches long and 3 and a half inches across, was lying on his bedroom floor.
It entered from the outside wall, hit the ceiling, and damaged another wall, all while he and his wife were home.
“Fortunately, nobody was hurt,” Kelley said.
Homeowners say if the shell had not first hit a tree limb and then the ground, the impact would have been a lot more severe when it hit the house.
The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department says the shell came from a historic artillery canon fired at the gun show.
The gun range owner says the weapon was fired safely by professionals at a downward projection.
Owners of the range say they are taking every measure to prevent something like this from ever happening again.
Oklahoma: You want guns everywhere? You got it. You want 14″ Howitzer missiles bombing your neighborhoods and landing in your kitchens? You got that too.
Living in Oklahoma means you have the FREEDOM to shoot off shells like this. I mean, this is the USA! USA! USA! If they land in someone’s kitchen? Hey, what about MY gun rights?
I think this is one of, if not the, most important and urgent issues of our time:
The health of a democracy is dependent on an educated citizenry. Political illiteracy is the manure for the flourishing of political appeals based on sheer ignorance.
So let me introduce you to House Majority Speaker Eric Cantor’s Republican Party vanquisher David Brat (R-VI). First thing you need to know about this far right-wing political upstart is he’s a university professor, which means it’s highly probable he’s not an idiot. He also identifies with the Tea Party strain of conservatism, which, paradoxically, means it’s likely he is, indeed, an idiot. And by idiot, I mean wholly ignorant of U.S. history and constitutionality.
In fact, in his victory speech delivered last week to his supporters, Brat demonstrated that he sits among the majority of Americans when it comes to political and cultural illiteracy.
“I wish to restore America to its Judeo-Christian roots,” declared Brat. “God acted through people on my behalf.”
Ignoring the self-delusion of the latter part of the above text, Brat now joins no less than 200 million Americans, according to a number of polls, who believe the U.S. Constitution and our laws are based on Judeo-Christian values. On any given Sunday you will hear Christian-right politicians claim absurdly that U.S. laws are based on the Bible. Spoiler alert: they’re dead wrong. The Constitution’s secular provisions came into being thanks to the Founding Fathers, who shared a deep suspicion of both organized religion and the supernatural. The Constitution was framed with a conscious omission of any mention of God and a prohibition of all religious tests for public office. Moreover, the First Amendment’s declaration that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion” embodied the founders’ view that religion has no place in the political domain.
That not a single major media outlet bothered to correct Brat’s ignorance represents America’s continual decline in American civic and cultural literacy.
The nation’s collective ignorance as it pertains to cultural and civic literacy paves the way for extremist politicians to convince the public of the validity of extreme positions.
Funny and so true. They really have boxed themselves into a corner.
My Tweet of the Day:
Actual Washington Post headline on June 10, 2014 on how to stop the abuse, rape and murder of women:
That’s a screenshot in case they change it. Here’s the article itself.
This is good, via Act.TV/Americans United:
The GOP may be a lot of things, but “climate scientists” is not one of them. But that won’t stop them from ignoring a 97% consensus among actual scientists, along with 7 out of 10 Americans, that climate change is man-made and needs to be dealt with.
I swear, guys like Bloomberg are legends in their own mind, divorced from reality, living in billion dollar bubbles.
Talk about dumbed down. Geezus. I’m thinking he might be delusional.
The Heritage Foundation is a conservative so-called think tank (as in the American Taliban). Check out this flash from Politico’s Dylan Byers about its new venture:
The Heritage Foundation, a powerful right-wing think tank, is planning to launch a new news service that will cater to a conservative audience, sources familiar with the organization’s plans told POLITICO on Wednesday.
Heritage will officially announce the project on Thursday in an embargoed report by Bloomberg News, the sources said.
I’m thinking this “new news service” should be in quotes because the Heritage Foundation’s “new news service” won’t be a “new news service” at all. It will be a well-funded propaganda bomb. So yo, Dylan, think about practicing journalism if you call yourself a journalist.
Here are some of the questions “illegal immigrants” have to answer before they’re given U.S. citizenship.
Would you pass?
Gawd, this is embarrassing:
Where’s Ukraine? Each dot depicts the location where a U.S. survey respondent situated Ukraine; the dots are colored based on how far removed they are from the actual country, with the most accurate responses in red and the least accurate ones in blue. (Data: Survey Sampling International; Figure: Thomas Zeitzoff/The Monkey Cage)
Take Anti-Unionol, a long-lasting anti-worker suppository (this is great):
Climate change is happening fast in the United States but state and federal governments are so dysfunctional they’re unable to respond. Chaos reigns. Central California’s San Joaquin Valley is an example. It’s referred to as America’s “bread basket” but it’s literally being sucked dry. And no, I’m not a drama queen blogger high on Cheetos:
When water doesn’t fall from the sky or flow from reservoirs, there’s only one place to find it: underground. So, three years into a devastating drought, thirsty Californians are draining the precious aquifer beneath the nation’s most productive farmland like never before, pitting neighbor against neighbor in a perverse race to the bottom.
The rush to drill is driven not just by historically dry conditions, but by a host of other factors that promote short-term consumption over long-term survival — new, more moisture-demanding crops; improved drilling technologies; and a surge of corporate investors seeking profits for agricultural ventures.
Now those forces are renewing an age-old problem of environmental degradation: Decades ago, overpumping sunk half of the entire San Joaquin Valley, in one area as much as 28 feet. Today new areas are subsiding, some almost a foot each year, damaging bridges and vital canals.
Yet in California, one of the few states that doesn’t regulate how much water can be pumped from underground, even this hasn’t been enough to create a consensus to stop.
“It’s our savings account, and we’re draining it,” said Phil Isenberg of the Public Policy Institute of California, a former Sacramento mayor and assemblyman. “At some point, there will be none left.”
I recommend reading the whole article. Growers are plowing hundreds of thousands of dollars into drilling wells and well drilling companies are booked 12 months out. Well permits have tripled this year over last, and this year is only three months old. What’s happening there is a not-so-slow-motion catastrophe the corporate media will talk about — and people will know about — when it’s too late.
Yo, Arizona, do you really want to go down the road where anyone and everyone can refuse services to people they perceive as violating their “religious freedom?”
Let’s pretend I’m your letter carrier and I’m on my route walking toward your house. While sifting through the envelopes I’m carrying I see a letter or a solicitation from the NRA or Planned Parenthood. I’m opposed to one or the other so — per my “religious freedom” and the bill sitting on Governor Jan Brewer’s desk — I refuse service because delivering that letter would go against my “religious freedom” and I toss it.
That’s where you’re going.
Do you want letter carriers to decide what mail you get based on their “religious freedom?”
Seriously? Think about the ramifications.
(P.S. Here’s the definition of ramification.)
Oh, and I love how Republicans seem to have driven over their infamous rebranding plan.
When the media writes about Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper (we call him Howdy Doody here in Colorado) objecting to Colorado voters legalizing marijuana, it should be ah, kind of relevant (to say the least) to note that Howdy Doody is a freaking beer magnate and of course he doesn’t want marijuana to take hold:
John Hickenlooper Warns Govs on Pot Legalization
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper urged fellow governors Saturday to be cautious about following his state’s lead in embracing marijuana.
The Democrat worries other states will legalize pot so that they can tax it and fill budget shortfalls.
My Tweet of the Day:
My Tweet of the Day:
The corporatocracy keeps us in a state of fear (they can control us that way), but they keep us in a state of fear of things that are less likely to harm us than it.
Have you ever watched “Animal Planet” and had the feeling that what you were watching wasn’t, at its core, about animals? Me too.
Here’s an article Mother Jones published today about that very issue:
Which leads me to my quote of the day, even though I don’t have a quote of the day category here on ye ol’ blog:
“We’re not looking to be a natural history channel,” Animal Planet group president Marjorie Kaplan told the New York Times in 2008. “We’re looking to be an entertainment destination.” The network recently aired two documentary-style programs purporting to present evidence that mermaids are real.
I don’t look to Animal Planet to be “a natural history channel” but I do look to them to be a channel that cares about animals. Read the Mother Jones article. Not only don’t they care about animals, they’re willing to kill them in order to add drama to their shows.
I guess we should take them at their word: “We’re looking to be an entertainment destination” and here in the good ol’ U.S. of A., killing animals is entertaining. Check your local listings.
Maybe it’s just me, but have you noticed how the cable “news” networks cycle through so-called news stories roughly every eight, ten, 15 minutes and repeat themselves ad nauseam all day (unless there’s “breaking news” of course, like a high-speed police chase or an apartment fire)?
And maybe its just me but have you noticed how the right constantly screams about how liberal the U.S. media is?
Imagine how this country would change if the media really was liberal and they repeated this kind of thing every day, all day:
– Giving Employees Paid Sick Leave is Good for Business: A large majority of employers in Connecticut — where paid sick leave has been mandatory since January, 2012 — “reported that the law did not affect business operations and that they had no or only small increases in costs.”
– The NSA’s Sweeping Surveillance Programs Don’t Stop Terrorism: On June 5, 2013, the Guardian broke the first story in what would become a flood of revelations regarding the extent and nature of the NSA’s surveillance programs. Facing an uproar over the threat such programs posed to privacy, the Obama administration scrambled to defend them as legal and essential to U.S. national security and counterterrorism. Two weeks after the first leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden were published, President Obama defended the NSA surveillance programs during a visit to Berlin, saying: “We know of at least 50 threats that have been averted because of this information not just in the United States, but, in some cases, threats here in Germany. So lives have been saved.”
However, our review of the government’s claims about the role that NSA “bulk” surveillance of phone and email communications records has had in keeping the United States safe from terrorism shows that these claims are overblown and even misleading. An in-depth analysis of 225 individuals recruited by al-Qaeda or a like-minded group or inspired by al-Qaeda’s ideology, and charged in the United States with an act of terrorism since 9/11, demonstrates that traditional investigative methods, such as the use of informants, tips from local communities, and targeted intelligence operations, provided the initial impetus for investigations in the majority of cases, while the contribution of NSA’s bulk surveillance programs to these cases was minimal.
Climate change will complicate the Philippines’ efforts to become self-sufficient in rice, the country’s economic planning secretary said Monday.
Arsenio Balisacan said preliminary data showed that 74% of the estimated damage from natural disasters in the country last year came in the farm sector, primarily affecting rice. The natural disasters include extreme weather caused by global warming, he said.
“We expect these extreme events and unpredictable phenomena to become the new normal,” Mr. Balisican told a workshop on efforts to address the impact of climate change in agriculture.
No government regulation! Woo hoo. A Libertarian paradise (unless you need to take a shower, drink water, wash your clothes, make dinner or wash your face).
Got that? Earlier this month, Republicans refused to extend unemployment insurance to more than a million Americans because they’re lazy a++holes and if we coddle them they’ll just keep on keepin’ on sucking the tit of the American taxpayer.
Dear god of the universe: If only we really did have a liberal media here in the U.S., they’d be screaming about this: <—- <—-:
And if we had Democrats here in the U.S. who made some serious noise, who had guts and a willingness to stand up to the corporatocarcy (thank you Justice Roberts and your ruling on Citizens United), We the People might stand a chance…
From the Tea Party News Network:
Sanity? Yeah. Right. It’d say this is more about making us more insane if anything. A&E had a teachable moment here:
Teabaggers claim this is all about free speech and that silencing Phil Robertson goes against the First Amendment of the Constitution. Problem is, as is so often the case, they’ve apparently never read the one itty bitty sentence that comprises that amendment; they’re misinterpreting something that’s really, really clear and simple:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Translation: The First Amendment is about our government — as in Congress (hello, see above) — not passing any laws “abridging the freedom of speech.” It isn’t about being able to say whatever the hell you want or to yell “fire” in a movie theater.
Stupid is the new cool.
Shocking (not): There are fewer Christians in the world that the U.S. corporate media would have me believe.
Bravo! New Mexico yesterday, Utah today:
U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby issued a 53-page ruling Friday saying Utah’s law passed by voters in 2004 violates gay and lesbian couples’ rights to due process and equal protection under the 14th Amendment.
Shelby says the state failed to show that allowing same-sex marriages would affect opposite-sex marriages in any way, and the state’s unsupported fears and speculations are insufficient to justify deny allowing same-sex marriages.
This is about human rights — civil rights — not religious rights.
The most destructive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico ever, after which people and animals are still suffering is mesmerizingly beautiful?
Really? Is that where we are? Is that what we’ve become? People who see beauty in oil spills?
So John Boehner is a hero because he stood up to the people who hated his budget before they read it?
This is what’s really going on here (heads up Tea Partiers — they’re playing you for fools):
Americans think of Mexico and Mexicans as a nation of wannabe braceros, itching to cross the border to suck the tit of the American welfare state.
Think again Americans! They’re movin’ on up and getting things done:
Barring an unlikely court upset, the new year in Mexico will bring a national tax of one peso per liter — roughly 10 percent — on sugar-sweetened beverages and 8 percent on junk food. The legislation came about through a strong push by the Nutritional Health Alliance of 22 NGOs and networks representing some 650 nonprofits and grass-roots organizations, and an alignment of interests among President Enrique Peña Nieto, advisers in the Hacienda y Crédito Público (the rough equivalent of the I.R.S.), and members of the opposition parties.
The powerful Mexican soda and junk food industries were hardly asleep at the wheel this fall, and fear of losing their advertisers appears to have led major TV stations to refuse to run commercials advocating the tax. But several factors motivated Mexico’s president and legislature, including the fact that among populous nations, Mexico recently passed the United States to become the world’s most obese. Beyond that, there’s an increasing awareness that Mexico’s accelerating public health crisis could hurt its economy, and that only prevention would make practical the universal, single-payer health care system instituted last year.
Also critical to the new law was an agreement reached by the three major political parties, called “Pact for Mexico,” which essentially committed them all to not blocking anything that a majority wanted; specifically, if the party in office and one of the other two major parties wanted to pass one of 95 reforms necessary for the country to progress the third party would not resist. In other words, the nation’s future trumped partisan interests.
Me neither. Here’s a short blurb from November 30 from ScienceMag.org. It requires a subscription so this is all I can grab but amazing isn’t it, that we didn’t hear a peep about this in the U.S.
corporate liberal media? They were too busy tracking Obama’s “plunging” poll numbers and the supposed demise of Obamacare I guess.
Featuring the first lunar rover in 40 years, Chang’e-3 is seen as an important milestone on China’s quest to send a crewed mission to the moon by 2030. Its premier scientific instrument is a wide-angle extreme ultraviolet camera that will continuously observe Earth’s plasmasphere and the tail of comet ISON.
Oh, and for the most part, we just don’t do science around here.
UPDATED: Here’s more:
For the first time in more than three decades, the moon may soon see some soft-landing, human-made visitors. China launched its first moon rover—and third moon mission—at 1:30 am today, local time.
The Chinese rover should land December 14 or 15, Space.com reports. The last soft lander to visit the moon’s surface was a Russian craft in 1976. The last people on the moon were Americans, in 1972. Since then, space agencies have sent instruments purposefully crashing onto the moon’s surface, but nothing designed to remain intact after landing, which is more difficult to do.
I can’t decide if this is some sort of twisted poverty porn or a way for privileged people to have what could be an enlightening experience:
Shanty Town for a Unique Accommodation Experience in Bloemfontein
Millions of people are living in informal settlements across South Africa. These settlements consist of thousands of houses also referred to as Shacks, Shantys or Makhukhus. A Shanty usually consists of old corrugated iron sheets or any other waterproof material which is constructed in such a way to form a small “house” or shelter where they make a normal living. A paraffin lamp, candles, a battery operated radio, an outside toilet (also referred to as a long drop) and a drum where they make fire for cooking is normally part of this lifestyle.
Now you can experience staying in a Shanty within the safe environment of a private game reserve. This is the only Shanty Town in the world equipped with under-floor heating and wireless internet access!
The Shanty Town is ideal for team building, braais, fancy theme parties and an experience of a lifetime. Accommodates up to 52 guests. Our Shantys are completely safe and child friendly.
My gut feeling is that this is pretty revolting. I mean, show me a South African shanty town that has “under-floor heating and wireless internet access” that’s “completely safe.” If they want to truly recreate the experience of living in a shanty town, do it. It isn’t just about the look of the shanties.