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Archive for 'Stateside'

Bill Maher on non-voters

Maher makes the unexceptionable point that even in elections with highly imperfect choices, the results can affect the lives of millions of people for better or worse. Well said. And good for singling out Russell Brand’s anti-voting shtick for the ridicule it deserves.
Brand’s rather feeble response is here.
As for Brand’s call for a “peaceful, [...]

Follow-up: Ex-CEO indicted in connection with deadly mine blast

In 2010 we posted about the terrible safety record at the Upper Big Branch coal mine in West Virginia, where 29 miners lost their lives in an explosion.
The Massey Energy Company, under CEO Don Blankenship, routinely ignored government safety citations and the federal agency in charge of mine safety failed to act decisively.
Now in what [...]

Post-midterm thoughts

Some not-necessarily-original thoughts about Tuesday’s midterm elections here in the US:
–Although for a number of reasons I expected Democrats to lose control of the Senate, and lose some governors’ seats, they did rather worse than I imagined. Aside from the historic pattern of the party occupying the White House losing Congressional seats in the midterms, [...]

Republicans deny being scientists

Most indications are that the Republicans will retake control of the Senate by a narrow margin in Tuesday’s midterm elections (although it’s possible that the matter will not be decided until December or January).
This would give the Republicans control of both houses of Congress.
The reasons for this are fairly straightforward: The party that occupies the [...]

Ebola and ODS

This is what ODS* can do to people. And sadly, there are at least hundreds of thousands of Americans, and some others, who live (virtually) within this particular echo chamber. One or two of them may even comment here.

I can only express my gratitude once again to Fox News’s Shepard Smith for his willingness to [...]

Shepard Smith: again the Voice of Sanity at Fox News

No, Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin: The possibility of Islamic State agents infecting themselves with the Ebola virus and traveling to the US is not a “real and present danger.”
No, Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona: We were not told there would never be a case of Ebola in the United States.
No, Republican Congressman [...]

Texas Republican hysteria watch

Remember the “terror babies” scare of a few years ago?
According to its advocates, pregnant women were coming to the US as tourists, having babies, and then returning with their newborns to their home countries, where they were raised to become terrorists. Because of a clause in the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, originally enacted after [...]

The Oklahoma beheading

Although there’s no evidence that Alton Nolen– a Muslim convert accused of beheading a former fellow employee in Oklahoma last week– was part of any organized terrorist group, the horrific nature of his crime strongly suggests it was inspired by the widely-publicized beheadings of Westerners carried out by the Islamic State in Syria.
It seems Nolen– [...]

Republican outreach watch

As an aficionado of ridiculous rightwing and Republican political ads (see some of my favorites here, here, here and here), I found this one more strange and insulting than amusing:

The ad, sponsored by an outfit called Americans for Shared Prosperity and reportedly aired on TV in North Carolina and Colorado, depicts a young, slightly dark-skinned, [...]

The Roosevelts

If you didn’t see it last week on PBS, you can watch online Ken Burns’s seven-part 14-hour series “The Roosevelts,” about Theodore Roosevelt, his fifth cousin Franklin and his niece (and Franklin’s wife) Eleanor.
It begins with Theodore’s birth in 1858 and ends with Eleanor’s death in 1962.
Even the usually wrong-headed George Will has some [...]