Archive for February 22, 2012

87 MPH Wind in Boulder, Colorado

Yesterday I posted about a high wind warning that was issued for Boulder, Colorado beginning at 11:00 p.m. last night and lasting through 5:00 a.m. Thursday.

Well, here it is, 7:19 p.m. on Wednesday and we’re right in the middle of it.  Ugh.  I’m exhausted.

Trees are down, trucks have overturned, we’ve had a grass fire and the city is on accident alert because of it (that’s a first…until now, accident alerts have only been issued during snowstorms).

Photo: Cliff Grassmick / Boulder Daily Camera

Photo: Cliff Grassmick / Boulder Daily Camera

Knock on wood, the house is still standing.  It’s going to be (another) long night.

February 22, 2012 at 7:34 PM 2 comments

Romney Camp Edits Negative Wording Out of Detroit News Endorsement

Is this the ultimate in arrogance or the ultimate in a whole lot of nobody-will-ever-find out stupidity?  I think it’s both:

There are a lot of kind words for Mitt Romney on the Detroit News editorial page Wednesday. But by trying to hide the few words that weren’t very nice, the Romney campaign could lose the narrative — and the goodwill of the paper.

The News endorsed Romney with less than a week to go in the Michigan primary race. It’s a must-win state for Romney and polls show he needs all the help he can get when it comes to convincing Republican Michiganders to get on board. All in all it was a nice editorial for the campaign (subhead: “State native offers the best resume, temperament and electability of the remaining Republican field”). But there was one graph where the paper took strong issue with Romney over the issue of the auto bailout, which has dogged him since the Michigan race began in earnest.

The Romney campaign apparently felt it best to drop that part down the memory hole. In a blast email version of the News editorial sent out to reporters Wednesday morning from the Romney press shop, this paragraph from the editorial was missing:

We disagree with Romney on a point vital to Michigan — his opposition to the bailout of the domestic automobile industry. Romney advocated for a more traditional bankruptcy process, while we believe the bridge loans provided by the federal government in the fall of 2008 were absolutely essential to the survival of General Motors Corp. and Chrysler Corp. The issue isn’t a differentiator in the GOP primary, since the entire field opposed the rescue effort.

When a guy who’s trying to sell himself as being wise enough and confident and tough enough to be the leader of the free world does something like this, it‘s jaw dropping.  Because in the end, he looks like an insecure, deceitful 16-year-old who has no ethics or morals; who can’t defend what he did, and who cares only about being the most popular kid in school, no matter what it takes.

February 22, 2012 at 6:58 PM Leave a comment

“Bob’s For Jobs?”

This would be Virginia Governor Bob — let’s rape women with an ultrasound machine — McDonnell’s campaign slogan:

February 22, 2012 at 6:47 PM Leave a comment

145 Bears Shot Last Year in Area Surrounding Canada’s Tar Sand Oil Fields

If the people in charge of extracting oil from Canada’s tar sands can’t do a better job than this of disposing of their damn garbage, I hate to think what other kinds of messes they’re making up there, much less the kind of mess they’d make constructing the Keystone XL pipeline:

Image: Wikipedia

Alberta Sustainable Resource Development says 145 black bears were killed by Fish and Wildlife conservation officers last year after being habituated to garbage in the oilsands region.

The number of bears shot in the Fort McMurray district was nearly three times the count the previous year and the highest in recent history, said spokesman Darcy Whiteside.

Nearly half — 68 bears — were shot in oilsands camps and facilities after being attracted to the camp by food, garbage or other attractants, Whiteside said Tuesday.

Another 51 were shot on residential properties.

No individual or company was charged with improper storage of food or other attractants, Whiteside said.

Environment and wildlife conservation groups were outraged by the number of black bear killings. They immediately blamed the deaths on lax garbage management and a lack of proper monitoring and regulation by the provincial government.

Way to go idiot humans.  What a unnecessary, preventable tragedy.

February 22, 2012 at 5:13 PM Leave a comment

VA Gov. Bob McDonnell Gives a Little Bit (But Not Much) on Ultrasound Rape Bill

The media is reporting that Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell (R) has “backtracked” on the ultrasound rape bill he and his religious fanatic friends tried to sneak through the legislature there.

Here the a statement he issued today, which again, the media is referring to as “backtracking.”  (Note the parts I’ve bolded.)  Would you call this “backtracking?”

Statement of Governor Bob McDonnell on SB 484

RICHMOND – Governor Bob McDonnell issued the following statement today regarding SB 484, a bill before the General Assembly that would require an ultrasound prior to an abortion being performed.

“I am pro-life. I believe deeply in the sanctity of innocent human life and believe governments have a duty to protect human life. The more our society embraces a culture of life for all people, the better country we will have. Over the course of my 20-year career in elected office, I have been glad to play a leading role in putting in place common-sense policies that protect and defend innocent human life in the Commonwealth. One of those bills was Virginia’s informed consent statute, of which I was the chief patron in the House of Delegates, finally seeing its passage in 2001. This session, the General Assembly is now considering amending this informed consent statute to include a requirement that any woman seeking an abortion receive an ultrasound in order to establish the gestational age for appropriate medical purposes, and to offer a woman the opportunity to voluntarily review that ultrasound prior to giving her legal informed consent to abortion.

Over the past days I have discussed the specific language of the proposed legislation with other governors, physicians, attorneys, legislators, advocacy groups, and citizens. It is apparent that several amendments to the proposed legislation are needed to address various medical and legal issues which have arisen. It is clear that in the majority of cases, a routine external, transabdominal ultrasound is sufficient to meet the bill’s stated purpose, that is, to determine gestational age. I have come to understand that the medical practice and standard of care currently guide physicians to use other procedures to find the gestational age of the child, when abdominal ultrasounds cannot do so. Determining gestational age is essential for legal reasons, to know the trimester of the pregnancy in order to comply with the law, and for medical reasons as well.

Thus, having looked at the current proposal, I believe there is no need to direct by statute that further invasive ultrasound procedures be done. Mandating an invasive procedure in order to give informed consent is not a proper role for the state. No person should be directed to undergo an invasive procedure by the state, without their consent, as a precondition to another medical procedure.

For this reason, I have recommended to the General Assembly a series of amendments to this bill. I am requesting that the General Assembly amend this bill to explicitly state that no woman in Virginia will have to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound involuntarily. I am asking the General Assembly to state in this legislation that only a transabdominal, or external, ultrasound will be required to satisfy the requirements to determine gestational age. Should a doctor determine that another form of ultrasound may be necessary to provide the necessary images and information that will be an issue for the doctor and the patient. The government will have no role in that medical decision.

So yes, Governor McDonald is “backtracking” on “mandating an invasive procedure” but he isn’t “backtracking” on mandating procedures, i.e., he is “asking” the General Assembly to change the legislation to state that “only a transabdominal, or external, ultrasound will be required…”  In other words, the Governor is still putting the government into the exam room and between a woman and her doctor.

The government shouldn’t require a woman (or a man or a child) to have any procedures.  Period.

February 22, 2012 at 4:48 PM 2 comments

Conservative Tucker Carlson Suggests the U.S. “Annihilate” 75 Million Iranians

Tucker Carlson

said this last night on Fox’s “Red Eye:”

I think we are the only country with the moral authority […] sufficient to do that. [The U.S. is] the only country that doesn’t seek hegemony in the world. I do think, I’m sure I’m the lone voice in saying this, that Iran deserves to be annihilated. I think they’re lunatics. I think they’re evil.

Outrageous on so many levels, one being the laughable statement that the U.S. “doesn’t seek hegemony in the world,” and the other being that he’s talking about annihilating 75 million people as casually as if he’s talking about squashing a fly.

This is the kind of thoughtless, mindless drivel we heard prior to the invasion of Iraq.  Do we really want to watch that movie again?

February 22, 2012 at 2:21 PM Leave a comment

This is Not a Chicken

Wow.  I love this graphic responding to the “personhood” amendment Republicans are introducing across the country.  You know, the one that would make law the notion that a human being becomes a person the instant a sperm fertilizes an egg.



February 22, 2012 at 1:01 PM Leave a comment

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