Archive for July 14, 2012

When the Corporatocracy Was a Baby

Ah yes, this whole corporatocracy thing started a long, long time ago.  This is a screenshot from The Lawrence Welk Show circa 1960:

(Image via TVCollector71 on YouTube)

If only we’d known then how out-of-control it would get.

And yes, Geritol still exists:




July 14, 2012 at 7:56 PM Leave a comment

Mitt Romney Friends Dick Cheney

Dick Cheney hosted a fundraiser for Mitt Romney Thursday night at Cheney’s home in Wyoming. Attendees paid $1,000 to attend the reception, $10,000 for a picture with Romney and $30,000 to eat dinner with Mitt and the Dick.  The media wasn’t allowed to take photos of either man.

Because of the unpopularity of Bush and Cheney, Romney has kept his distance — never appearing publicly with either man during his 2012 campaign. Though both leaders are admired by many in the Republican Party base, any perception of closeness with Romney could be harmful as the unofficial Republican nominee seeks to draw in independent and moderate voters.

Uh oh. Wait.  There’s this:

Mitt and Dick in 2002. (Image via

Hey, maybe Mitt will put Dick on his VP search committee and Dick will pick himself for the job.  You know, kinda like he did with Bush?

Vampires never die.

July 14, 2012 at 7:21 PM 2 comments

Yummy Chilled Red Pepper Soup

My friend Beth S. — who I know from the food bank where I volunteer — gave me this recipe yesterday.  I made it last night and It. Is.  Delicious.  Thought I’d share:

(Image via flickr user Shadphotos)

Red Pepper Soup

6 Tbs. butter

2 Tsp. oil

4 cups chopped leeks

6 large red bell peppers, seeded and sliced

3 cups chicken broth

6 cups buttermilk

white pepper

Melt butter with oil in large saucepan.  Add leaks and red peppers. Reduce heat and saute, covered, 20 minutes or until veggies are soft.  Stir occasionally to prevent scorching.

Add chicken broth and salt to taste.  Simmer, partially covered, over low heat 30 minutes, or until veggies are very soft.

Blend leek/pepper mixture in food processor or blender until smooth.  Strain into large bowl.  Stir in buttermilk and white pepper to taste.

Garnish with chives or thin slices of lemon, if desired.  Other options are to add a dollop of caviar immediately before serving, and/or serve in a hallowed-out, chilled red pepper.

Her note:  This makes a lot [like 12 servings].  I usually make half or even 1/3 of the recipe and I sometimes use a little less butter and a little more oil for sauteing the veggies.

Red pepper soup came up because one day about four weeks ago we got something like 45 cases of red bell peppers. Yesterday we put the last of them out which was both good and bad because our patrons love them but I can’t tell you how sick we volunteers were of moving them around, of trying to keep them from spoiling, of putting them out, and of saying, “You can have as many of these as you want.”

This recipe is easy to make, so creamy and again, delicious.  Not only that, but we’ve got to get those “brightly colored veggies” in us!


July 14, 2012 at 6:24 PM Leave a comment

The Food and Drug Administration is Spying on Its Own Workers

We all know the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is essentially owned by, well, food and drug companies.  That said, the FDA has been spying on its own scientists, scientists who are calling attention to the too-close relationship between the agency and the companies it’s supposed to regulate.

Vast Effort by F.D.A.

Spied on E-Mails of Its Own Scientists

It’s a longish, fairly complicated article (definitely worth a read though) and it’s hard to cut-and-paste but here’s the intro:

A wide-ranging surveillance operation by the Food and Drug Administration against a group of its own scientists used an enemies list of sorts as it secretly captured thousands of e-mails that the disgruntled scientists sent privately to members of Congress, lawyers, labor officials, journalists and even President Obama, previously undisclosed records show.

What began as a narrow investigation into the possible leaking of confidential agency information by five scientists quickly grew in mid-2010 into a much broader campaign to counter outside critics of the agency’s medical review process, according to the cache of more than 80,000 pages of computer documents generated by the surveillance effort.

Moving to quell what one memorandum called the “collaboration” of the F.D.A.’s opponents, the surveillance operation identified 21 agency employees, Congressional officials, outside medical researchers and journalists thought to be working together to put out negative and “defamatory” information about the agency.


In essence, the FDA was spying on its own scientists to protect, again, food and drug companies.

Given the massive Penn State cover-up, Romney’s never-ending lies, the Libor fiasco, J.P. MorganChase’s (the smartest guys in the room?) potential $9 billion loss, it seems to me that corruption is what this world is all about these days.

It’s chilling.  And frightening.  Where are the grown-ups?


July 14, 2012 at 5:40 PM 1 comment

Romney’s Friday Night Media Blitz in 60 Seconds

The put together a 60-second compilation of Mitt Romney’s appearances last night on Fox, NBC, CBS, ABC and CNN.  I couldn’t stand to watch even one.  I’m beginning to loathe the guy and hearing his voice brings on the same cringe (and nearly audible scream) as W’s.

Anyway, here it is if you’re interested.

July 14, 2012 at 3:18 PM 2 comments

Shortages Pushing EMTs to Use Expired Drugs

Really?  This is happening in the United States of America?

(Image via

Drug shortage pushing some EMTs to extremes

When paramedics ran out of a critical drug used to treat irregular heartbeats, the Bend Fire Department in Central Oregon dug into its stash of expired medications, loaded the trucks, and kept treating patients.

Paramedics reported asking some of those facing medical emergencies: “Is it OK if we use this expired drug?”

Emergency responders in various jurisdictions have reported turning to last-resort practices as they struggle to deal with a shortage of drug supplies created by manufacturing delays and industry changes. Some are injecting expired medications or substituting alternatives. Others are simply going without.

As the drug crisis mounted for the Bend Fire Department earlier this year, the agency had 11 expired medications in its drug kits, despite risks that the drugs might not work as intended in life-or-death situations. The crisis has eased a bit, but the agency still carries expired doses of two drugs in serving a city of 80,000 people.

“We’ve never [before] had to go diving back into the bin to try to retrieve expired boxes of drugs,” said Tom Wright, emergency medical services coordinator for the Bend Fire Department, which has been administering outdated medicines for about a year. “We had the backing of our insurance company that giving expired drugs is better than giving no drugs at all.”


We really are going to hell in a handbasket.


July 14, 2012 at 12:55 PM Leave a comment

Republicans Blow $50 Million on Repeal Obamacare Game

Remember the Republican “jobs agenda?”  Me either:

Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner (Image via

Health Care Law Repeal Efforts By House GOP Cost Nearly $50 Million: CBS Report

While Republicans lambast the cost of implementing health care reform, a new report shows that their efforts to repeal the law have come at a major cost to taxpayers — to the tune of nearly $50 million.

The House of Representatives again voted to repeal President Obama’s signature health care law on Wednesday, marking the 33rd time Republicans have attempted to take down the legislation. The 32 previous repeal efforts faltered at the hands of the Democrat-controlled Senate; the latest attempt is unlikely to break that pattern.

According to a report by CBS News, these efforts, widely viewed as symbolic political maneuvers, come with a high price tag.

CBS’ Nancy Cordes reported Wednesday that Republicans’ many fruitless attempts at repealing the Affordable Care Act have taken up at least 80 hours of time on the House floor since 2010, amounting to two full work weeks. As the House, according to the Congressional Research Service, costs taxpayers $24 million a week to operate, those two weeks amounted to a total cost of approximately $48 million.


Nice to see some actual reporting/journalism going on around here.  Republicans playing to their base with $50 million of our taxes money.

July 14, 2012 at 11:51 AM Leave a comment

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