s skippy the bush kangaroo: February 2009

skippy the bush kangaroo

Saturday, February 28, 2009

skippy's saturday nite music club

st. vincent - these days

cover of the nico cover of the jackson browne song
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

there's a bathroom on the right

also from dispassionate liberal, this song is not called "obama's elf":

posted by skippy at 3:27 PM | 3 comments

it's my tea party and i'll lie if i want to

via the dispassionate liberal (on twitter of all places) we find out that the sudden populist "tea party" movement that has literally dozens of followers across the united states, is neither sudden nor populist. from exiled online:

within hours of santelli’s rant, a website called chicagoteaparty.com sprang to life. essentially inactive until that day, it now featured a youtube video of santelli’s “tea party” rant and billed itself as the official home of the chicago tea party. the domain was registered in august, 2008 by zack christenson, a dweeby twitter republican and producer for a popular chicago rightwing radio host milt rosenberg—a familiar name to obama campaign people. last august, rosenberg, who looks like martin short’s irving cohen character, caused an outcry when he interviewed stanley kurtz, the conservative writer who first “exposed” a personal link between obama and former weather undergound leader bill ayers. as a result of rosenberg’s radio interview, the ayers story was given a major push through the republican media echo chamber, culminating in sarah palin’s accusation that obama was “palling around with terrorists.” that rosenberg’s producer owns the “chicagoteaparty.com” site is already weird—but what’s even stranger is that he first bought the domain last august, right around the time of rosenburg’s launch of the “obama is a terrorist” campaign. it’s as if they held this “chicago tea party” campaign in reserve, like a sleeper-site. which is exactly what it was.

chicagoteaparty.com was just one part of a larger network of republican sleeper-cell-blogs set up over the course of the past few months, all of them tied to a shady rightwing advocacy group coincidentally named the “sam adams alliance,” whose backers have until now been kept hidden from public. cached google records that we discovered show that the sam adams alliance took pains to scrub its deep links to the koch family money as well as the fake-grassroots “tea party” protests going on today. all of these roads ultimately lead back to a more notorious rightwing advocacy group, freedomworks, a powerful pr organization headed by former republican house majority leader dick armey and funded by koch money.
the piece goes on to discuss eric odom, who was the "brains" (?) behind last summer's dont'go.com faux populist movement, and his badly-hidden involvement in this tea party phenom.

but more telling is when we follow the money:

but it’s the alliance’s scrubbing of their link to koch that is most telling. a cached page, erased on february 16, just three days before santelli’s rant, shows that the alliance also wanted to cover up its ties to the koch family. the missing link was an announcement that students interested in applying for internships to the sam adams alliance could also apply through the “charles g. koch summer fellow program” through the institute for humane studies, a koch-funded rightwing institute designed to scout and nurture future leaders of corporate libertarian ideology. the top two board directors at the sam adams alliance include two figures with deep ties to koch-funded programs: eric o’keefe, who previously served in koch’s institute for humane studies and the club for growth; and joseph lehman, a former communications vp at koch’s cato institute.

all of these are ultimately linked up to koch’s freedom works mega-beast. freedomworks.org has drawn fire in the past for using fake grassroots internet campaigns, called “astroturfing,” to push for pet koch projects such as privatizing social security. a new york times investigation in 2005 revealed that a “regular single mom” paraded by bush’s white house to advocate for privatizing social security was in fact freedomworks’ iowa state director. the woman, sandra jacques, also fronted another iowa fake-grassroots group called “for our grandchildren,” even though privatizing social security was really “for koch and wall street fat cats.”
now maybe those dozens of protesters will have to have a little crow w/their tea.

addendum: also discussed on the big picture, to whom we link purely for the memeorandum traffic.

update: the wingnuts attack!
posted by skippy at 9:29 AM | 19 comments

later gator later gator -- and then some...

i spent much of friday looking for a new apartment. nothing to worry about -- my lease runs out in a couple months, and, well, having lived here since slick willie was president, i have this strong urge to relocate. i have no complaints about this complex. it's just about that time for me to try living in a different part of the area for a year or so. things have kind of stagnated here.

and search i did. i hit six different places in three different parts of the metro richmond area yesterday, looked hard at what they all had to offer, and to my surprise, all six places -- six quite distinct places, i assure you -- offered what i consider more pros than cons. naturally, this makes my task of deciding where i want to live next that much harder. but this is exactly why i choose to live in a city/metro area rather than a small town or a rural area. for good or ill, urban/suburban areas are alive, diverse, pulsing, flowing -- whereas small towns and rural areas seem to be frozen in time. i grew up in small towns, and i never really liked living in any of them. they seem to be great places to go if you want to lay down and die. thank the flying spaghetti monster for places like richmond and henrico, places i would be happy to spend the rest of my life.

after i was done with that, i decided to drop in on what appears to be the only gay bookstore left in virginia: phoenix rising. i bought a book by one leroy aarons: "prayers for bobby: a mother's coming to terms with the suicide of her gay son." they made a movie about this, which i haven't seen yet. but i'd heard about bobby griffith's suicide, and his mother's soul-wrenching struggle to deal with it. so i purchased the book. it's not only a painful read, it reminds me of just how isolated i remain. it reminds me of how much time it took me to come to terms with being gay. three-plus decades. and, frankly, it doesn't help that every time i walk into phoenix rising, at least one other patron looks at me like i'm one of the @$$#0!e$ responsible for murdering matthew shepard. excuse me for not immediately coming across as a twinkie, a drag queen, a leather fetishist, or liberace, as the more-ghey-than-thou sub-culture demands, sweetie. i like wearing plaid shirts and blue jeans. they suit me just fine.

anyway, once i was done apartment-browsing and application-collecting, i stopped at the village, a plaza not far from where i live, for a bite to eat. up until last year, a fine little lebanese/mediterranean restaurant, the grapeleaf, was one of the village's attractions. i used to recommend it to people looking for a great place to eat because nearly all of my favorite foods hail from or very near to the mediterranean region. unfortunately, the economy was falling apart at the seams in earnest last year, and i guess the grapeleaf just didn't have a lifeboat to cling to. it's gone now. that was bad enough.

even worse is what opened up in its place this week: the newest franchise of a 50s/early 60s-themed outfit calling itself -- get this -- cheeburger cheeburger. not "cheeseburger cheeseburger," mind you. cheeburger cheeburger. that is not a typo. for some reason, this is where i decided to eat a late lunch -- all the while thinking to myself, 1) where's my grapeleaf, you doo-wop ducktail alley oop m&%$@f*&k%@$, and 2) that is the second most dip$#!+ted name for a food franchise i have ever heard of. (number one is this.) and i ate there anyway, so what does that say about me?

well, it says i have a higher tolerance for strained attempts at recreating happy days-like nostalgia than i thought i did. the place has its own piped-in music, which is occasionally broken up by chee-squared endorsements from a "deejay" who sounded to me like a young wolfman jack resigned to washing his prozac down with old milwaukee lite. and hey, that's fine. you know, i'm just scarfing down a nice medium-cooked cheeseburger with toppings (oh, all right, cheeburger with toppings) plus a side of onion rings. the food was excellent. but did i have to listen to the original version of "teen angel" while eating it? bucko, please! happy days my gay bookstore-patronizing ass.

what a disappointing finish to an otherwise invigorating day. i'd spent the bulk of it looking for a new place to live, nearly overwhelmed by the sheer range of options at my disposal -- and had topped that off with a visit to phoenix rising and the purchase of a book that interested, inspired, saddened, angered, and impressed me all at the same time.

and then i went to cheeburger cheeburger.

you know what? i'd rather have other gay guys look at me like i'm out to kill them for being gay than set foot in that lousy burger joint again. i'm still in the toe-dipping stage when it comes to coming out locally, so that's all right -- sooner or later, they'll realize that the only threat i pose is to myself, and then they'll begin to relax.

in the meantime, i have to secure a new place to live.

til further on...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 6:29 AM | 2 comments

Friday, February 27, 2009

skippy's friday nite music club

das pop - electronica for lovers
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 5 comments

how tweet it is

if anyone cares, skippy is now twittering.

it's really kind of stupid, if you ask us.
posted by skippy at 3:56 PM | 7 comments

mad about the political twittersphere

mad kane, that is!

(p.s., mad, shouldn't that be "twittertopia"?
posted by skippy at 8:19 AM | 3 comments

Thursday, February 26, 2009

skippy's thursday nite music club

jane monheit & michael buble - i won't dance

the new kids try the old standard...and not bad!
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 3 comments

"everything changes" is just the coward's way of saying "everything dies"

skippy notes w/sadness that the morning paper of his childhood growing up in denver colorado is closing its doors. rocky mtn news:

the rocky mountain news publishes its last paper tomorrow.
rich boehne, chief executive officer of rocky-owner scripps, broke the news to the staff at noon today, ending nearly three months of speculation over the paper's future.

"people are in grief," editor john temple said a noon news conference.

but he was intent on making sure the rocky's final edition, which would include a 52-page wraparound section, was as special as the paper itself.

"this is our last shot at this," temple said at a second afternoon gathering at the newsroom. "this morning (someone) said it's like playing music at your own funeral. it's an opportunity to make really sweet sounds or blow it. i'd like to go out really proud."

boehne told staffers that the rocky was the victim of a terrible economy and an upheaval in the newspaper industry.

"denver can't support two newspapers any longer," boehne told staffers, some of whom cried at the news. "it's certainly not good news for you, and it's certainly not good news for denver."
denver was one of the last cities in america w/more than one daily newspaper. now all the news will be found in the redoutable denver post, the evening establishment.

skippy liked the rocky mtn. news, mainly for its easy to handle book-like fold, which made it easy to read on the bus or anywhere else, w/o the extra hassle of more folds and re-folds to hold it in a convenient reading fashion.

and when skippy was reading papers, a dose of news in the morning w/coffee was a great way to start the day.

rip rocky mtn. news.
posted by skippy at 9:42 PM | 3 comments

and now for something completely different

not your usual break out artist...

staff at the santa monica pier aquarium in california say the trickster who flooded their offices with sea water was armed. eight-armed, to be exact. they blame the soaking they discovered tuesday morning on the aquarium's resident two-spotted octopus, a tiny female known for being curious and gregarious with visitors. the octopus apparently tugged on a valve and that allowed hundreds of gallons of water to overflow its tank. - ap

the tiny octopus, which is about the size of a human forearm when its appendages are extended, floated lazily in the water that remained in its tank. it watched intently through glass walls and portholes as workers struggled to dry the place out in time for the day's first busload of schoolchildren to arrive on a 9:30 a.m. field trip. - latte times

(photo from the latte times)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:20 PM | 3 comments

from the emails we never bothered to finish reading dept.

we received this email:

re: nicht overpay fur die software

wir haben das sortiment der computerprogramme unseres kleinen geschäfts erneuert.
wir bieten ihnen die neusten versionen der programme für pc und macintosh auf allen europäischen sprachen an.
posted by skippy at 9:12 AM | 6 comments

torn (sort of)...

my representative happens to be eric cantor (r, va-7). these days, i don't know whether to feel embarrassed for my district over this or laugh myself sick over it instead...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 8:37 AM | 3 comments

mad about bobby "kenneth the page' jindal

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 3:46 AM | 2 comments

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

skippy's wednesday nite music club

j.j. cale - cajun moon
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 1 comments

quote of the day

john cole, on today's repubbblicans:

repeating things that herbert hoover said 80 years ago does not qualify as a good point.
posted by skippy at 7:49 PM | 1 comments

down the penrose lane

posted by skippy at 9:28 AM | 0 comments

pork? you mean bacon! kevin bacon!

as of today, the skippy's are three degrees from barack obama.

one of mrs. skippy's best friends happens to be a first cousin to gary locke, obama's nominee for commerce secretary. reuters:

president barack obama on wednesday nominated former washington state governor gary locke to be u.s. commerce secretary, turning to a west coast politician with a history of working with china after his two previous nominees backed out.

"it's not lost on anyone that we have tried this a couple of times. but i'm a big believer at keeping at something until you get it right," obama said.

locke was the first chinese american governor in u.s. history. during his two terms as governor from 1997 through 2004 he led eight trade missions to china and opened a washington state trade office in guangzhou.
both gov. locke and the skippy's attended the wedding of the governor's cousin, mrs. skippy's friend, in rancho palos verdes last decade. and then the skippy's joined a group of people, including gov. locke's mother, for a trip to england to celebrate the two families of the newly wedded couple being united. it was a large party, including many lockes, many other folks from the groom's side, and in fact, the ex-wife of a famous 60's tv detective. a good time was had by all.

and now the cousin, and all the lockes (and the skippy's, too, for that matter) are very proud for gary.

addendum: as far as the skippy's know, gary locke has paid all his income taxes.
posted by skippy at 9:05 AM | 2 comments

if you hide income to evade taxes

and don't contribute honestly to the financial stability of this country....you should turn in your american citizenship...not sue.
ubs was sued on tuesday in a swiss federal court by wealthy american clients seeking to prevent the disclosure of their identities as part of a tax-evasion investigation by the united states justice department. - nytimes

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:44 AM | 3 comments

question for the rethuglicans

if government is so inept and awful....why do y'all want to get and keep jobs in it? oh, yeah...and i thought you said government never created jobs....

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:40 AM | 4 comments

iowa's government...the city of atalissa

lacking a moral backbone.
iowa's social-services agency acknowledged tuesday that it looked into a company's treatment of its mentally disabled meatpacking workers as early as the 1970s, but decided it lacked the jurisdiction or enough evidence to act.

...the men lived at a 106-year-old house that locals called the bunkhouse. the city of atalissa owned the home, and city officials recently acknowledged that some of its doors were padlocked, windows were boarded up and the heating system was broken, leaving only space heaters.

the men worked for henry's turkey service, a texas company that provided labor for a meatpacker near atalissa in west liberty. recent inquiries showed the company diverted much of the mentally disabled men's paychecks and government payments to living expenses, leaving them about $65 a month in wages. - ap

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:37 AM | 0 comments

missed last night's speech...

there was nothing i could do about it. i spent one-third of the evening extracting gremlins from an ailing printing press and the other two-thirds working myself like a rented ox in a partly successful attempt to make up for lost time. besides, we didn't have a television, and even if we did, we wouldn't have been able to hear a damn word obama said -- loud industrial machinery, foam earplugs, you do the math.

so, to anyone who did catch the speech, how was it?

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posted by Jim Yeager at 5:20 AM | 6 comments

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

skippy's tuesday nite music club

department of eagles - nobody does it like you

live on a roof top. where have we seen that before?

actually, these guys are pretty good.
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 5 comments

if you go to new orleans...

you gotta go to the mardi gras!

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:03 AM | 1 comments

yes... and...?

saw this headline on cnn's website: "poll: politicians trusted more than business leaders on economy."

that may be the case. but it ain't really sayin' much, is it?


posted by Jim Yeager at 5:46 AM | 8 comments

Monday, February 23, 2009

skippy's monday nite music club

perez prado & his orchestera - dancing mambo #8
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 3 comments

skippy's monday nite music club

getting ready for a new orleans flavored tuesday....

two new orleans music greats...harry connick jr. and ellis marsalis - "caravan"

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:13 PM | 1 comments


to rurality who was featured and interviewed on the nature blog network.
this week’s featured blog is rurality. meet karen, the host and blogger who brings rural alabama to your desktop. karen is a former electrical engineer who fled the corporate world in 1996 and started a small handmade soap business. a move to the country reignited her interest in photography and nature.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:06 AM | 0 comments

people are hungry for change....

and just plain hungry.

food stamp delays surge in colorado - denver post

food stamps, fuel requests rise - rocktown weekly, virginia

more floridians get food stamps - pensicola news journal

more texans and oklahomans in need of food stamps - kten, tx

dog food bank opens in clackamas county - oregonian

1 in 5 in la county receiving public aid - pasadena star news

democrats need to start hammering in the fact that awol and his band of thieves (the republican party) are responsible for this economic disaster. and those folks do want "less desirable" (poor) people to suffer.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:26 AM | 1 comments

it's just not north dakota

stepping back into the dark ages....other states are looking to grant a fetus "full personhood" status.

as part of a renewed pro-life strategy to challenge roe v. wade, lawmakers in seven states are working toward legislation to grant constitutional rights to human embryos.

five states, including maryland, north dakota, montana, south carolina and alabama, have recently introduced "personhood" bills. the bills affirm the right to life for pre-borns from the moment of conception. for some states, the bill also declares the word "persons" as applying to all human life, irrespective to biological development. - the christian post

but there are folks with good common sense out there...they just don't seem to be in the legislature though.

certainly iuds, which prevent implantation rather than fertilization, would be illegal, as would some birth control pills. and given the lack of trust in the professional ethics of board-certified physicians evidenced in the original version of the bill, we can bet there will be legislation down the road to absolutely ensure that a terminated ectopic pregnancy – or a spontaneous abortion or a miscarriage – wasn’t a plain old abortion in disguise. (doctors can be so tricky.)

in fact, the people of north dakota have no real idea what the legislation might mean for our people and our state, other than we can be pretty sure it will take millions of taxpayer dollars to defend the bill. and there are obvious things that would be illegal: stem cell research; termination of the pregnancy of a 14-year-old victim of incest; termination of the pregnancy of a 19-year-old college student given rohypnol and gang-raped.

what we don’t know is what it will mean for the medical community and women with problem pregnancies or fertility problems. for instance, what will happen in iffy situations, such as when physicians know that pregnancy will seriously exacerbate diabetes or kidney disease in a woman but won’t necessarily kill her? how can they give the advice they think is most ethical if they expect to be hauled into court to defend it?

and what about fertility treatments? if the unused normal fertilized eggs from ivf are frozen, what happens to the abnormal fertilized eggs also created by the procedures? for that matter, if the parents don’t want the leftover frozen embryos, do they become wards of the state?- in forum

let's not sweep this issue under the rug like so many other important issues. this is a human rights issue. yes, it may come a surprise to some out there that women are human too and women must never be shuttled back into the catagory of being someone's property...neither should their bodies.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:03 AM | 3 comments

Sunday, February 22, 2009

happy 6 year blogiversary

to back of the cereal box.


posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:21 PM | 2 comments

skippy's sunday nite music club

for tonite's oscars...

amanda seyfried - thank you for the music

from mama mia!, the movie we think meryl streep should have been nominated for...
posted by skippy at 7:01 PM | 2 comments

environmental news stories sunday

you know...the stories that won't be paraded out on the red carpet this evening....

oil polluters owe state $197 million.
when the state set up its oil spill compensation fund in 1977 to cover the cost of emergency cleanups, it expected those responsible for pollution to repay. but it often does not work out that way. polluters don't cover what it costs the state simply to run the fund, much less to clean the spills. - albany times union

new environment for agenda. for years, sen. barbara boxer dreaded fridays. that was the day each week, she said, when bush administration officials would change federal rules to weaken some environmental protection. - palm springs desert sun

severe drought adds to hardships in california.
the economic downturn is being deepened in california by a severe drought that threatens to drive up joblessness, increase food prices and cripple farms and towns. - nytimes

prepare for a climate-changed world, say engineers. a report by the uk's institution of mechanical engineers will next month call for governments to accept that climate change is now inevitable. strategies must be put in place now to protect our infrastructure from its worst effects, alongside existing efforts to reduce emissions, it will argue. - new scientist

green & gray: older adults seek homes easy on them and earth. for steve crow, the epiphany came when he watched al gore's movie about global warming, "an inconvenient truth." - portland oregonian

experts map carbon emissions with google. american scientists led by purdue university unveiled an interactive google earth map on thursday showing carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels across the united states. - afp

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:41 AM | 0 comments

Saturday, February 21, 2009

skippy's saturday nite music club

austin hartley-leonard - golden opportunity

give this song a chance...the opening verse is a bit thin, but it grows on ya
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 3 comments

there's a special on dire wolf fossils in the basement

over near the la brea tar pits here in los angeles, excavation was underway to dig up what used to be the basement of a may's department store @ the corner of fairfax & wilshire.

imagine everyone's surprise when construction workers found the largest cache of pre-historic fossilized bones ever. guardian uk:

researchers have discovered the largest collection of ice age fossils beneath a demolished department store in central los angeles.

the find includes an almost intact colombian mammoth, nicknamed zed by researchers, a complete sabre-tooth cat skeleton, a giant ground sloth and a north american lion.

the discovery, close to the la brea tar pits where the remains of 34 mammoths were uncovered almost a century ago, has excited palaeontologists because it gives them an unparalleled glimpse of life in the los angeles basin more than 10,000 years ago.

unlike earlier excavations, workers were able to preserve intact smaller fossils, including turtles, clams, snails, fish and tree trunks. in previous discoveries, these items were discarded as the larger fossils were uncovered.
the old may's building used to stand next to the park complex that holds both the la county museum of art and the large pool of gunk known as the la brea tar pits (a phrase which, when the spanish is translated, reads "the 'the tar' tar pits"). the latimes tells us complete skeletons were found in the excavation:

among their finds, to be formally announced today, is the nearly intact skeleton of a columbian mammoth -- named zed by researchers -- a prize discovery because only bits and pieces of mammoths had previously been found in the tar pits…

the site of the old two-story parking garage, which was used by the now-defunct may co. department store, is now owned by the page's neighboring museum, the los angeles county museum of art. lacma had razed the building to construct an underground parking garage that would restore parkland above the structure.

the entire rancho la brea area at hancock park is a paleontological treasure chest. petroleum from the once-massive underground oil fields oozed to the surface over the millennia, forming bogs that trapped and killed unsuspecting animals and then preserved their skeletons. it is now a protected site, although dispensation was granted to build the new garage.
posted by skippy at 4:40 PM | 3 comments

we like what you've done with the place

nice new look @ hoffmania.
posted by skippy at 8:57 AM | 0 comments

Friday, February 20, 2009

skippy's friday nite music club

the four freshmen - you're so far above me
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

rip socks the cat

marcy nighswander / associated press

the former first cat has gone to kitty heaven. latimes:

the former white house cat, who would have turned 20 this spring, was euthanized this morning at a veterinary clinic in hollywood, md. socks had been suffering from cancer and the currie family, who took custody of him when president clinton left office, feared that he was too old for extensive treatment such as putting him on a feeding tube, family friend barry landau told u.s. news & world report a few months ago.

of late, socks "could no longer stand and wasn't eating," landau told people magazine.

"i'm miserable, miserable, miserable," betty currie, clinton's former secretary, said today in an interview with the southern maryland news.

in a statement released through the william j. clinton foundation, bill and hillary clinton said: "socks brought much happiness to chelsea and us over the years, and enjoyment to kids and cat lovers everywhere. we're grateful for those memories, and we especially want to thank our good friend, betty currie, for taking such loving care of socks for so many years."

over the course of his long life, socks inspired books, television.
rest in peace, socks.
posted by skippy at 10:28 PM | 3 comments

parts better be available

for my little saabi.....or i'll be really pissed....

general motors corp.'s swedish-based subsidiary saab went into bankruptcy protection friday so the unit can be spun off or sold by its struggling u.s. parent, officials said.

the move comes after sweden turned down gm's request for government help for saab. - ap

nice to find out that gm is going begging for dollars from other countries, too....especially those "socialist" countries that they dread so much....

Originally uploaded by s g

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:47 AM | 4 comments

Thursday, February 19, 2009

skippy's thursday nite music club

stevie ray vaughan - pride and joy
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 6 comments

pope to pelosi "protect life at all stages of development"

the guy in the funny hat thinks pelosi needs to change her positions on abortion. no word on if pelosi asked the pope if protecting life at all stages of development includes leaving 12 year old choir boys alone.


posted by George at 9:02 AM | 11 comments

14 kids and delusional mom and a shopping cart

looks like homelessness might be in their very near future.
the whittier house where nadya suleman, the mother of octuplets, and her six other children have been living with her parents is in pre-foreclosure, according to records. - latte times

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:08 AM | 4 comments

salmon is good for us

but they are not doing good.

the smallest number of pacific ocean salmon ever recorded swam back to the sacramento river via san francisco bay last fall, the latest evidence of the decline of the storied fish along the west coast, officials said wednesday.

the pacific fishery management council, a federal body that regulates commercial and sport fishing, estimated that only 66,286 adult salmon returned to the sacramento river to spawn. six years ago, the peak return was 13 times higher.- sfgate

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:03 AM | 2 comments

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

skippy's wednesday nite music club

black crowes - she talks to angels
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

we like what you've done with the place

check out the new look @ mother jones for our bud kevin drum's blog.
posted by skippy at 10:58 PM | 0 comments

say hello

to conversations.
posted by skippy at 10:32 PM | 0 comments

santa barbara is being lubricated

looks like platform "harmony" isn't living up to it's name....

a mixture of oil and water leaking wednesday from an exxon mobil platform spread across a mile of ocean off the southern california coast, federal and state officials said.

initial reports indicated the leak on platform harmony came from a deck drainage tank where rainwater, lubricants and fluids drain into a sump, said coast guard spokeswoman stephanie young. she said the company reported the leak monday and was still working wednesday to stop the mixture from seeping into the santa barbara channel. - ap

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:50 PM | 2 comments

attention all women in north dakota

time to go on a sex strike. no nookie...no nada...until this north dakota comes into the 21st century.

north dakota's house of representatives has passed a bill effectively outlawing abortion.

the house voted 51-41 this afternoon to declare that a fertilized egg has all the rights of any person. - kxmc.com

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:45 PM | 13 comments


just the sort of news that livens up the spirit....
the federal reserve warned wednesday that the nation's crippled economy is even worse than thought and predicted it would deteriorate throughout 2009, with no sign that the housing market will stabilize. - ap


posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:41 PM | 0 comments

mad about repubbblicans

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 1:23 PM | 2 comments

blogrollin in our time

we are pleased as a platypus to add cheek and bluster to our blogroll under "social blogs"!
posted by skippy at 1:20 PM | 0 comments

you've got to fight for your right to a serious party

skippy has worked w/a film maker, david lasdon, on several projects.

david, a republican, feels (like many of us do) that the current gop has lost its way.

(ok, we feel it's lost its mind, but the general ideas are similar.)

david is in the middle of making a documentary on his travels and travails into the depths of repubbblicanism (he was a delegate to last year's convention) and we admire his on-the-ground grass-roots approach to the problem enough to bring you the trailer for his yet-unfinished work (above).

he's looking for tax-deductible donations to help complete his film. more info can be found @ where's the party?

dave is a good guy and sincere in his concern for his chosen political party (and we believe his concerns to be legitimate).

take a look @ his trailer, and go to his website to look around.
posted by skippy at 12:48 PM | 2 comments

gee these guys are working fast

to set the ship america upright again...

the obama administration is throwing out food labeling rules proposed by the agriculture department just before george w. bush left office, saying it wants labels for fresh meat and other foods that would show more clearly where an animal or food came from, according to consumer groups who've been briefed on the issue. - ap

looking c.o.o.l!

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:07 AM | 6 comments

he ain't no joltin' joe

as the nation so aptly puts it....he's morning yo-yo.

forget o'reilly, hannity, or even fox and friends. msnbc's morning joe is the most entertaining expression of how far behind the curve the obama election has left the mainstream media, whose cable personalities multiplied like toadstools in the damp darkness of the bush presidency. unable to adjust to the new sunlit era or match the president's suave wonkiness, they crawl back to what's familiar.

and for morning joe, that means a reprise of the great american family sitcom, reincarnated this time as a political talk show.

joe scarborough is the clueless suburban dad, always trembling on the edge of
age-inappropriate behavior, like chevy chase in the long-running national lampoon's vacation series. the comely erin burnett, who visits daily from next-door neighbor cnbc, is the christie brinkley character, tempting dad away from the cougarish but perhaps ho-hum mom, mika brzezinski--ho-hum because she's more intelligent, and frequently undermines him.

the supporting cast includes mike barnicle, as the crusty old uncle who drops in to grouse that the average guy's getting a bum deal!(true to type, this uncle has
amusingblind spots--like raging against executive pay caps for bailed-out bankers without disclosing, until bloggers shamed him, that his wife is the chief marketing officer for bank of america
).... - the nation
at least one of the national lampoon movies was funny....

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:57 AM | 3 comments

haven't been angry enough to post in a while

the new york post is running a shameful cartoon. shameful. i don't even want to show it, here, but i've linked it in a new window so you'll know why i'm sad.

i wrote sean delonas an email.
ok, the cartoon with the dead chimp and the policeman saying that someone else would have to write the stimulus bill is shameful.
if you're saying the president is a chimp, because people compared a*wol to a chimp, you're not figuring in the race card, which always counts. i don't want it to count, but it does.
if you're being that racist, you should hang your head in sadness over your own ignorance.
if you're saying that other people are racist, then you're missing your mark, because my first thought was that *you* should be ashamed for putting this out there.

please think long and hard about how this insults so many people, at so many levels.

t. yaches
anybody think i'm over reacting? i don't.

[ed. addendum: neither does the huffington post, to whom we link strictly for the memeorandum traffic]
posted by The One True Tami at 7:55 AM | 11 comments

oopsie. guess who has a tax problem

the girl-illa from wasilla.....

gov. sarah palin must pay income taxes on thousands of dollars in expense money she received while living at her wasilla home, under a new determination by state officials. - anchorage daily news

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:52 AM | 2 comments

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

skippy's tuesday nite music club

pretty corny song...until you get older...

terry jacks - seasons in the sun
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 14 comments

time is on their side

a big congrats to our good friends @ crooks & liars for being named one of time magazine's top 25 blogs of 2009:

when professional musician john amato launched the crooks and liars political blog in october 2003, it featured something that was quite novel in those ancient pre-youtube days: video clips. today, crooks and liars is among the most widely read political blogs on the web, and amato — now known in blog circles as "the vlogfather" — is recognized as a pioneer of video blogging. the video selections — snippets from government press briefings, congressional hearings and tv talk shows — are the sort of clips that jon stewart uses for fodder, but this is a chance to see the video in its original unintentionally humorous context. amato leans liberal, but his blog is an equal opportunity attack dog, taking a bite out of the crooks and liars on both sides of the aisle.
and the year ain't even over yet!

addendum: and look who gets on time's list of most overrated blogs! can you say "karma"?
posted by skippy at 10:48 PM | 3 comments

say hello

to gannyinsanity.
posted by skippy at 10:46 PM | 0 comments

dr. dean speaks

for me. for us. for healthcare.

"the far right's all out offensive against medical research"...over at the huffypo

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:14 PM | 2 comments

more peanut product recalls

yeah...they are still doing product recalls.

junior's cheesecake & desserts is recalling its 8-inch peanut butter
chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake

bad byron's specialty food products inc. is recalling its barbecue seasoned roasted peanuts.

bear naked is recalling 12-ounce packages of bear naked all-natural peanut butter granola and bear naked all-natural peanut butter granola with heavenly chocolate with a "better if used before" date before feb. 1, 2010.

theo chocolate inc. is recalling peanut butter big daddy and peanut confections.

slim-fast is extending a recall of slim-fast optima caramel crispy
peanut meal on-the-go bars - ap

remember...these recalls are voluntary. how can one company affect so many others? can we talk about the problem of consolidation?

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:54 PM | 3 comments

like, duh

like, you know.

in her first interview since giving birth, the teenage daughter of alaska gov. sarah palin said having a child is not "glamorous," and that telling young people to be abstinent is "not realistic at all." - cnn

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:51 PM | 2 comments

straight and narrative

bill moyers, on journal, talks w/glenn greenwald & jay rosen about the beltway press:

bill moyers:
how do you explain the fact that so many in the press, pundits and others as well, were saying obama has to be bipartisan?

jay rosen:
i think that the ideology of the press is not so much liberal or conservative. they think themselves the keepers of realism, of savviness. i think the real religion of the american press is savviness. and in their view, it isn’t savvy to say you’re going to mobilize the anger and frustration of the american people and bring that power to washington to change it.

that’s not how politics works. the way politics works is you say things like that to get elected, and then, once you’re in, you make your accommodations, you show that you want to hew to the center. you demonstrate that you’re bipartisan. you pick people who are familiar.

and it’s those eternal laws of politics that journalists feel they know better than us. and they expect politics to kind of run down these rails that they’ve laid down, because then we have to turn to them for the inside story. and this is what they want to continue.

glenn greenwald:
i agree with jay, that it isn’t so much that the media is liberal or conservative in terms of how those terms are defined conventionally in our political spectrum. what ends up happening is that ideas that are threatening to the media and to the political elite end up being attached to the label of liberalism or leftist ideology.

with the corresponding orthodoxy that the one thing obama, for instance, needs to show, is that he’s not beholden to the far left of his party, or that he’s willing to scorn the leftists and the liberals in his party. that’s when he generates the most praise. and the-

bill moyers:
from the washington press corps.

glenn greenwald:
from the washington press corps.

bill moyers:

glenn greenwald:
if you go back and look at the way in which obama was praised for the last two months, almost entirely by the media, will almost always be based on this idea that he’s not an ideologue that he’s not in concert with the liberals and the leftists in his party. that’s the great accomplishment in the eyes of the media; a president could possibly aspire to.

and the reason for that is because in their eyes, what liberalism or the leftist ideology that they’re scorning, are not things about policy making per se, or even approaches to foreign policy. it’s the idea that the prevailing consensus among our political elite is corrupted and needs to be radically changed. and so, what i think they are most afraid of is having the anger of the american people start to affect what happens within their system. what they want more than anything else, is to exclude those external influences.

jay rosen:
here’s another way to look at it. the press is full of behaviorists. they don’t know they’re behaviorists, but they are.

bill moyers:
what do you mean?

jay rosen:
a behaviorist is somebody who thinks that we can figure out what’s going on by looking at probabilities and large numbers of people, and what tends to happen with those people. and politics runs on laws like that to a large extent. however, there’s another aspect of politics, which is leadership, action, bringing something new into the world, starting something that didn’t exist before. having an idea nobody had before. pushing it through.

journalists, deep down, don’t believe that action really works. but the real excitement of democratic politics is that something new can come into the world, because we decided it. because there was an election. because there’s a new crowd in town.

bill moyers:
do you think that’s happening?

jay rosen:
i think it very much could happen.
posted by skippy at 1:20 PM | 5 comments

environmental stories...just because

they probably didn't reach a front page above the fold in most of the corporate press.

rocket (fuel) man.
a decade ago, nevada's congressional delegation won a grant from the epa to fund drinking-water improvements. richard bryan, one of nevada's two democratic senators at the time, proudly declared that nevadans had a right "to safe, clean drinking water." ten years later, bryan was a lobbyist for manufacturers of perchlorate. - mother jones

records contain pollution portrait.
state health and environmental regulators have levied about $55 million in fines since 1991 for more than 6,100 violations of the state's pollution laws, a new searchable watchdog database shows. a first-ever analysis of this data paints a portrait of pollution - charleston post & courier

scientists warn of persistent 'dead zones' in chesapeake bay and elsewhere.
healing low-oxygen aquatic "dead zones" in the chesapeake bay and hundreds of other spots worldwide will be trickier than previously imagined because the low oxygen levels that make it impossible for most organisms to survive also kill bacteria crucial to removing nitrogen from the water. - wapo

saving jaguars, tigers can prevent human diseases?
in central and south america, jaguars are often labeled as "cattle killers" and are slaughtered on sight. but a decline in top-level predators such as the jaguar can lead to a boom in prey populations that encourages the spread of disease including hiv, west nile virus, and avian influenza. - national geographic

honeybees under attack on all fronts. the world's honeybees appear to be dying off in horrifying numbers, and now consensus is starting to emerge on the reason why: it seems there is no one cause - new scientist

drought and fire here to stay with el nino's return. victoria is likely to come under the influence of another el nino within the next three years, exacerbating the drought and the likelihood of bushfires, a senior bureau of meteorology climate scientist says. - melbourne age

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:19 AM | 2 comments

Monday, February 16, 2009

skippy's monday nite music club

from our pal essaress

the moody blues - go now

introduced by dean jones on hullabaloo; watched closely by brian epstein on a stool (@ about 2:30)
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 8 comments

the brits and the french butt heads again...

but this time with nuclear subs.

a royal navy nuclear submarine was involved in a collision with a rench nuclear sub in the middle of the atlantic, the mod has confirmed. - the beebs
oh, that looks good....

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:39 PM | 3 comments

20,000 pink slips

due to one stubborn governator and the anti-american party.

in addition to shutting down public-works projects, schwarzenegger administration moves toward massive state layoffs as legislators continue to seek the one gop vote needed to pass a budget. - latte times
former governor gray davis is looking better and better these days.

brian over at calitics has some suggestions on what we can do...
The media has now taken notice that the Republicans are trying to bring the state down with them. But the media has little power if we aren't watching and if our leaders don't know we are watching them. So, here is what we need to do:

Call Senator Abel Maldanado (R-Monterey County, 916-651-4015) and tell him to give up his list of demands and end this hostage situation.

Call Senator Dave Cox (R-Fair Oaks, 916-651-4001) and tell him that the state deserves better than a Senator who goes back on a deal when threatened by his own
party's extremists.

Tell as many people to do the same thing. Use every tool at your disposal, Twitter, facebook, or just word of mouth. The more people that know about this Republican extremism threatening our state, the better.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:59 PM | 2 comments

president's day

John F. Kennedy
Originally uploaded by flintstoner80

posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:11 AM | 0 comments

u.s. bankers should feel lucky....

look what the brits are proposing...

here's an interesting item to think about in the debate over executive-compensation limits. a british politician is now calling for bonuses at bailed-out banks to be limited to £2,000, the amount typically received by low-level bank tellers.

at current exchange rates this is equal to $2,854.30 -- less than 1% of the cap that claire mccaskill has advocated over here, and for which she's been either praised or reviled as a populist lefty.

the british pol who is calling for this: david cameron, leader of the conservative party. - think progress

personally, i think this idea should carry over to these shores.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:57 AM | 1 comments

please send this man your best wishes...

this past autumn, he injured his shoulder in a bicycle accident. now, on wednesday, the culture ghost is going under the knife to have a growth removed from one of his lungs. to make a long story short, that bike accident has probably saved his life.

he's confident about getting through the surgery and making a full recovery, which is a great sign. still, it wouldn't hurt to send him a little love anyway.

and hey, it beats the hell out of calling your congresscreatures' offices, too. believe me, you'll actually feel like you're accomplishing something for a change. so go send him some love...


posted by Jim Yeager at 7:31 AM | 3 comments

mad about obama

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 4:14 AM | 0 comments

down the penrose lane

posted by skippy at 3:13 AM | 2 comments

Sunday, February 15, 2009

skippy's sunday nite music club

the amadeus quartet - string quartet no. 4:4 - allegretto pizzicato by bela bartok
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

disconnection junction

jane @ fdl points out how the way the dc journalists see things is 180 degrees away from how real people see them:

dc opinion: it's good for the republicans!

msnbc's first read lists among its winners "the republican party (which demonstrated unity after its big losses in november), and no.2 house republican eric cantor (who raised his profile during the debate)." reid gets a win, pelosi gets a loss.
chris cillizza also declares eric cantor a victor for maintaining party discipline (although he tags him a loser too for the afsme ad). reid gets a "win" her too, and house democrats are deemed losers, because "it appeared as though this was a senate-run production."

fox news unsurprisingly says "republican lawmakers may turn out to be winners. most of them voted against the package, and in their largely unified opposition, they found an issue to galvanize the party after two consecutive dispiriting electoral defeats." reid and pelosi don't exist.

liz sidoti also says the republicans win: "adrift after back-to-back electoral losses, they found their voice against a democratic speaker and an expanded majority. they held to the gop's cornerstone of fiscal conservatism as they led the effort to define the package as too costly and too quick." likewise, jon boehner: "he strengthened his hold on his job, keeping his rank-and-file united against the house version." again, reid gets a win. she gives pelosi and mitch mcconnell losses.

but according to daily kos polling, the change in public opinion from a poll taken from feb. 2-5 to the latest one taken from feb. 9-12 indicates that pelosi, reid and the democratic party have actually gone up in public approval -- all had a net change of +2 points, while the congressional dems scored a +3. conversely, republicans went down -- the republican party had a net change of -2, while mcconnell, boehner and congressional republicans all had a loss of -3.

what else is new?

addendum: via kevin drum, we find that mark kleiman thinks some beltway journos are actually starting to have the light dawn on them, ie, obama & the dems are winning:

dave espo of the ap is a pretty good weathervane for the beltway conventional wisdom. espo's latest story on the passage of the stimulus bill suggests that the cw, after focusing obsessively on how this or that step in the bill's passage represented a defeat for obama, have finally noticed that he basically got his way, and that the democratic team at both ends of pennsylvania avenue has started to deliver the goods.

friday's events capped an early period of accomplishment for the democrats, who won control of the white house and expanded their majorities in congress in last fall's elections.

since taking office on jan. 20, the president has signed legislation extending government-financed health care to millions of lower-income children who lack it, a bill that president george w. bush twice vetoed. obama also has placed his signature on a measure making it easier for workers to sue their employers for alleged job discrimination, effectively overturning a ruling by the supreme court's conservative majority...

espo's story carries no hint of the earlier widely-repeated nonsense about how the failure of republicans to vote for the bill even after it had been somewhat tailored to meet their original objections constitutes a defeat for obama's post-partisan ambitions. it seems far more likely to constitute an act of collective political self-immolation. the stimulus bill and obama are both quite popular, and the republicans just the opposite. the public doesn't seem to have had nearly as much trouble as, for example, the editorial page of the washington post in figuring out which side is extending the hand of friendship and which side is biting it.
posted by skippy at 3:55 PM | 3 comments

blogrolling in our time

we have added a few new blogs to our roll. we found this wonderful blogs during last week's blogroll amensty day festivities, and they are exciting additions to our linkage schedule. please welcome, in no particular order:




and stop the press!
posted by skippy at 2:34 PM | 1 comments

environmental stories sunday

for those stories that seem to slip underneath the corporate media radar..

fda, state stretched thin in inspecting food. a deadly salmonella outbreak that forces the removal of nearly 2,000 products from grocery store shelves raises the question: how can this happen? - dallas news

immensity of drywall problem still unfolding. with more than 313 million pounds of chinese drywall imported into florida in 2006, some of it good and some of it bad, getting a handle on where the system broke down is a daunting task. - bradenton herald

sick workers, guardsmen blame kbr. ten contractors and dozens of national guardsmen — including a dying senior officer — allege that houston-based kbr knowingly allowed them to be poisoned by cancer-causing chemicals at a basra water plant where they were making repairs to keep iraq’s oil fields pumping during the war.- houston chronicle

behind the big dry. scientists are struggling to understand the climatic conditions behind the unusually severe drought that has wreaked havoc on southeastern australia. new research suggests the answer might lie in the indian ocean.- living on earth.

climate change may be more devastating than thought. accelerated global warming could ignite tropical forests and melt the arctic tundra, releasing billions of tons of greenhouse gas that could raise global temperatures even more, a member of the nobel prize-winning intergovernmental panel on climate change warned. - palo alto weekly

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:25 AM | 2 comments

Saturday, February 14, 2009

skippy's saturday nite music club

thelonious monster - try
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 2 comments

they won't give me unemployment but

they are giving the corporations the big bucks?

firms would get nearly $1 billion in breaks, while the average person would pay higher taxes five ways. - latte times

you know...this being valentines day and all..you would think that our elected officials would have sent us chocolate or flowers before they s****d us.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:13 PM | 1 comments

bailout recipients use bailout moolah

to sue california.

car industry groups are gearing up for a long fight and the likelihood of legal action against proposals by president barack obama - telegraph uk

can we get our state's share of the bailout funds back?

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:35 PM | 0 comments

quote of the day

thers @ whiskey fire:

i don't especially care for the notion of the government regulating broadcast content. it annoys me that you can't say "fuck" on npr, for instance, although it is very clearly the case that, say, morning edition would be greatly improved by the introduction of the phrase "shut the fuck up, cokie."
posted by skippy at 10:16 AM | 2 comments

a stimulus hero is something to be

joe klein thinks joe lieberman is a stimulus hero.

jane hamsher disagrees.

steve benen sez that repubbbs secretly liked the bill.
posted by skippy at 10:12 AM | 0 comments

Friday, February 13, 2009

skippy's friday nite music club

army of lovers - crucified
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 5 comments

this is what republicans like

slave labor.

since the late 1970s, henry's turkey service has been shipping mentally retarded men from texas to iowa to work in the west liberty plant. henry's has acted as the workers' employer, landlord and caregiver — paying the men a reduced wage for their work at the plant and then deducting from their pay the cost of room, board and care. payroll records indicate the men are left with as little as $65 per month in salary. - des moines register

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:40 PM | 4 comments

oh yummy....

now this is a good little book to read while eating....not.

in its (falsely) reassuringly subtitled booklet “the food defect action levels: levels of natural or unavoidable defects in foods that present no health hazards for humans,” the fda.’s center for food safety and applied nutrition establishes acceptable levels of such “defects” for a range of foods products, from allspice to peanut butter.

among the booklet’s list of allowable defects are “insect filth,” “rodent filth” (both hair and excreta pellets), “mold,” “insects,” “mammalian excreta,” “rot,” “insects and larvae” (which is to say, maggots), “insects and mites,” “insects and insect eggs,” “drosophila fly,” “sand and grit,” “parasites,” “mildew” and “foreign matter” (which includes “objectionable” items like “sticks, stones, burlap bagging, cigarette butts, etc.”). - nytimes

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:10 PM | 3 comments


via firedoglake, the stimulus bill has finally (finally!) passed. asspress:

in a major victory for president barack obama, democrats on friday pushed through congress a $787 billion stimulus bill aimed at rescuing the country from the worst economic crisis since the great depression. republican opposition was nearly unanimous.

the senate voted 60-38 friday night for the package of tax cuts and federal spending that obama made the centerpiece of his plan for economic recovery. the roll call was extended into the night to allow time for democratic sen. sherrod brown to fly back from ohio, where his mother died earlier in the week.

his was the decisive 60th vote for the bill, which had the support of just three gop senators.
posted by skippy at 8:45 PM | 1 comments

court victory for him, al franken

the brad blog tells us a minnesota ruling should break well for al franken:

late friday finding from the 3-judge panel presiding over the coleman/franken u.s. senate election contest in minnesota, has limited the number of previously rejected absentee ballots that may be reviewed for possible counting.

the 17-page order [pdf] issued late today, will likely come as a blow to former senator norm coleman's (r) chances of overtaking presumptive senator-elect al franken's (d) current lead of some 250 votes out of approximately 2.9 million ballots cast last november...

earlier this week, the judges ordered both sides to present arguments on whether 19 different categories of rejected absentee ballots should, or shouldn't, be considered for counting in the trial. previously, the court had narrowed the "ballot universe" --- those ballots to be considered for possible counting --- to some 4,800 ballots submitted by the coleman team, and about 800 from franken's team.

most of the ballots were previously rejected for counting on both election night, and again during the post-election hand-count, for various reasons, most notably because voters failed to follow certain requirements, such as signing their ballot or submitting a proper registration form along with it…

at this moment, we don't yet know how many ballots remain in the "ballot universe" following the ruling, though at a telephonic press conference for reporters held moments ago, franken attorney marc elias contended that some 13 out of 19 categories they'd wanted exclude from counting were, in fact, excluded in the ruling by the court. another 4 categories they'd wanted excluded may or may not be a part of this ruling.

though elias didn't know how many exactly, he said "a huge number" of ballots would now be excluded from the "universe" in current consideration. "there are a total of 17 of the 19 that it appears we've prevailed on, either explicitly or implicitly in the reasoning," he said.

franken had argued against counting ballots in 17 of the 19 categories, while coleman's team had wanted all but two categories counted, arguing that many of the rejected ballots should be counted, despite a failure by voters to follow all requirements for casting absentee ballots…

update 4:50pm pt: tpm's eric kleefeld describes the ruling as "very bad news for norm coleman," and notes that in addition to the numbers of ballots no longer available for consideration, the ruling strikes down an important argument in coleman's case to date:

the court also walked back an approach they'd previously been looking at --- that a ballot could be accepted if any non-compliance by the voter could be blamed on an election official failing to instruct or correct them. instead, they say full compliance is needed for the categories laid out here.
posted by skippy at 5:42 PM | 2 comments

happy friday the 13th

Originally uploaded by --- FOTOMAT --

to everyone...especially fang fans!

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:00 AM | 2 comments

Thursday, February 12, 2009

skippy's thursday nite music club

incubus - love hurts
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 2 comments

the elevator music hits the bottom floor.

muzak files for bankruptcy.
but who knew there was such a history behind this soul sucking sound....

it might come as no surprise to those many millions who have grown to hate elevator music and its bastard offspring on-hold messaging, but the origins of muzak can be traced to the united states military. as well as being a phd and serial inventor in the field of radio, general squier was also an aviation pioneer, helping the us air force get off the ground with its first planes and worked with the wright brothers. after the first world war, during which he had been in the forefront of the rapidly emerging military signals technology, general squier spotted a civilian market for his wired sound and he sold his patents to a public utility company which began piping music into staten island direct from a hand-cranked record player at its new york city premises. such a wired domestic music service was facing eclipse by the growth of radio, but there remained plenty of scope for pushing the product into the commercial sector. and before the general died in 1935 he was to bequeath one more
brainwave to the emerging phenomenon. inspired by george eastman's celebrated kodak trade name, he re-christened the company muzak.

but muzak was always about more than just music and its core. in the 1940s, muzak came up with stimulus progression, the belief that piped music in the workplace, properly played, could stimulate production. obviously, true music lovers should look away now, but this quasi-scientific (some might argue pseudo-scientific) theory claimed that an individual's mood could be lifted through listening to programmed sound in 15-minute segments. within each block, the music is ordered from least to most stimulating, with the final and most upbeat track followed by a quarter of an hour of silence. - the independent

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:46 PM | 4 comments

spineless chicken sh**

judd gregg came to obama asking to be part of the administration but now he says "nah..." wonder what sort of dirt the republicans have on him to put the pressure on him to skedaddle.

guess he's just not all that into saving our country. but then again, neither are the republicans. they are hellbent on destroying our country.
this much is now clear. their clear and open intent is to do all they can, however they can, to sabotage the new administration (and the economy to boot). they want failure. even now. even after the last eight years. even in a recession as steeply dangerous as this one. - andrew sullivan.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:44 PM | 2 comments

you could always try rebooting

mrs. skippy received this email from her it guy @ her job:

installing a husband

dear tech support,

last year i upgraded from boyfriend 5.0 to husband 1.0 and noticed a distinct slow down in overall system performance, particularly in the flower and jewelry applications, which operated flawlessly under boyfriend 5.0.

in addition, husband 1.0 uninstalled many other valuable programs, such as:

• romance 9.5 and
• personal attention 6.5

and then installed undesirable programs such as:

• nba 5.0,
• nfl 3.0 and
• golf clubs 4.1.

conversation 8.0 no longer runs, and housecleaning 2.6 simply crashes the system. please note that i have tried running nagging 5.3 to fix these problems, but to no avail.

what can i do?


dear desperate,

first, keep in mind, boyfriend 5.0 is an entertainment package, while husband 1.0 is an operating system.

please enter command: ithoughtyoulovedme.html and try to download tears 6.2 and do not forget to install the guilt 3.0 update.

• if that application works as designed, husband 1.0 should then automatically run the applications jewelry 2.0 and flowers 3.5.

however, remember, overuse of the above application can cause husband 1.0 to default to grumpy silence 2.5, happy hour 7.0, or beer 6.1.

• please note that beer 6.1 is a very bad program that will download the farting and snoring loudly beta.

whatever you do, do not under any circumstances install mother-in-law 1.0 (it runs a virus in the background that will eventually seize control of all your system resources.)

in addition, please do not attempt to reinstall the boyfriend 5.0 program. these are unsupported applications and will crash husband 1.0.

in summary, husband 1.0 is a great program, but it does have limited memory and cannot learn new applications quickly. you might consider buying additional software to improve memory and performance. we recommend:

• cooking 3.0 and
• hot lingerie 7.7.

good luck!

tech support
posted by skippy at 10:03 AM | 4 comments

question of the day -- and, unfortunately, this one's a toughie...

for me, that is: if the rumor that one of the main competitors of the company i work for has filed for bankruptcy is true, should i feel pumped or depressed?

'cause on the one hand, our workplace has been holding its own against this fourteen-month-old recession very nicely, thank you. and me personally, i've been going against the grain for four months or so -- while others are having their hours scaled down or are being laid off or fired outright, my workload has gone up a substantial bit. parts of others' losses proved to be my gain, to spin it painlessly -- though, frankly, i'm of the opinion that nearly all of the ones who lost deserved to lose. (where i work, the deadwood are cast off, not rewarded with obscene bonuses -- maybe that's why we're still holding our own.)

but on the other hand, there's been this revolving door between my employer and our competitor for years. i know more than a few of the people there because i used to work with them where i am now, and have been for the last nine-odd years. so, if that bankruptcy rumor is true, then i'm conflicted -- most of these people aren't deadwood, but people with brains and skills, so the possibility that they will lose their jobs anyway sits very poorly with me.

f&#k*@g republicans and their one-track "tax cuts" minds. i wish one of them would explain to me what good a tax cut is if you're unemployed...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 7:50 AM | 5 comments

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

skippy's wednesday nite music club

the turtles - happy together
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 7 comments

toss this nut job in jail too

or feed him tons of his own tainted product.

peanut co. owner refuses to testify to congress. peanut co. owner takes the fifth, e-mails show owner told workers to ship tainted products. - ap

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:43 PM | 7 comments

put them both in jail

none of this stupid "house arrest" stuff. you know that if they weren't white and rich they'd be in the slammer.

the wife of disgraced money manager bernard madoff withdrew more than $15 million from a firm co-owned by her husband -- including $10 million on the day their children turned her husband over to authorities for overseeing an alleged$50 billion ponzi scheme, the top securities regulator in massachusetts said wednesday.

...they also appeared to follow what authorities consider a disturbing trend on the part of the madoffs to hide money that could be used to reimburse burned investors- ap

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:36 PM | 3 comments

we've got another answer for you, too

newt gingrich, in today's washtimes, asks where does the conservative movement go from here?

to which we would timidly respond, "away?"
posted by skippy at 3:57 PM | 7 comments

who's watching the watchmen?

battacchio over @ vagabond scholar, that's who!
posted by skippy at 8:46 AM | 2 comments

i've been unemployed since dec 19....

and haven't been able to get an unemployment check and psycho b***** octo mom is raking in the bucks?
as a single parent with no income, nadya suleman could receive thousands of dollars a month in government aid. - latte times

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:02 AM | 9 comments

why i don't share d. l. hughley's anger...

this is what he had to say about the impeachment of rod blagojevich -- and, well, the current state of our union:

...now i listened to those tapes and i'm not going to hide my affinity for this guy. i never met him before but to me we have become such a trivial place that we will impeach a man for having sex, or lying about having sex with a woman. in california we will impeach a guy because he raises taxes on license plates because energy gets out of control. we'll impeach a guy for saying some things on tape. but a man can take us to war and lie and we won't do a damn thing about that. that makes me so mad...

if you happen to be reading this, mr. hughley, then answer me one question: what's the point in being mad anymore?

we are a trivial place. have been for a very long time. one of your fellow comedians, the late great george carlin, transformed his career for the better when he began trashing our sterile culture, our petty politics, and our collective stubborn brainlessness. ten years ago, i would laugh myself silly listening to his social critiques. these days, i think carlin wasn't trying to be funny in those moments. or, if he was, then my guess is he just plain didn't give a rat's ass anymore -- a somewhat accurate description of my present attitude.

part of the reason i didn't say jack about blago while all that melodrama was going on was because george awol bush was cruising in lame-duck mode to one sweet retirement arrangement, never to be held accountable for his own far more heinous and numerous crimes, at the time. (the fact that the bitchiest act of that melodrama took place after awol was history renders my present indifference unassailable, if you asked me -- but have fun trying to assail it, if you must.) and you know what, mr. hughley? i railed against awol for several years. couldn't stand the sound or the sight of him. wanted to see him impeached. wanted to see him ejected from office. hell, there were instances during his second term where i was so mental and drunk simultaneously, i'd find myself sporting my very own stimulus package just thinking about his smirking carcass getting waterboarded. so i can understand why you'd be angry.

but that anger isn't going to do you any good now. there was a time when it mattered. that time is gone. that battle is over, and you -- and i -- have lost. pick yourself up, continue surviving, and learn to let this loss go -- it'll devour you from the inside out if you don't. i know your anger is justified. but it's irrelevant now. the game's over. awol won.

and letting that bother you is not worth being devoured from the inside out.


posted by Jim Yeager at 6:40 AM | 2 comments

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

skippy's tuesday nite music club

dixie hummingbirds - god's radar

old timie gospel the way it should be
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 3 comments

even the uber wealthy

have been affected by the economic downturn caused by greed.

a federal bankruptcy judge says he will appoint an outside examiner to investigate the proposed sale of the yellowstone club, following accusations of collusion between the club's owner and its would-be buyer.

the millionaires-only club, now under chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, fell almost $400 million into debt last year after its former owner diverted hundreds of millions of dollars from the enterprise. - ap

times has certainly changed for the yellowstone club, an ultra-luxurious retreat for the wealthy including bill gates and dan quayle which was once to be the site of a single home to sell for $155 million. now it is more than $400 million in debt. - luxist

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:15 PM | 2 comments

stimulate this

the senate passed their version of the stimulus bill today. steve benen @ washington monthly tells us:

this afternoon, as expected, the senate approved its $838 billion stimulus plan. the vote was exactly as expected -- the measure passed 61 to 37, with sens. collins, snowe, and specter joining the entire democratic caucus. judd gregg recused himself from the process.

even this morning, as the floor debate neared completion, we continued to hear the same nonsense from opponents. sen. lamar alexander (r) of tennessee, for example, insisted, "this is a spending bill, not a stimulus bill." it's all quite tiresome.

nevertheless, the next phase -- a conference committee between house and senate negotiators -- should be nearly as contentious as this one. already, the same "centrists" who helped the bill overcome republican obstructionism are threatening to withdraw their support if anyone tries to change their version of the legislation.
so we are definitely not out of the woods yet...if by "woods" we mean "negative dow jones advancement."

cbs marketwatch

of course, the market was reacting to tim geithner's bank bailout plan, and not the senate's stimulus plan, but at this point, you sell "potatoes," and we sell "po-tah-otes."
posted by skippy at 6:16 PM | 1 comments