s skippy the bush kangaroo: March 2012

skippy the bush kangaroo

Saturday, March 31, 2012

earth hour 2012

if las vegas can turn off the lights for one hour in recognition of earth hour, so can you.
8:30 p.m. tonight.
for one hour on saturday, darkness will replace the bright pink neon glowing on the flamingo and bulbs twinkling on fremont street casinos as part of a global environmental awareness event. - las vegas sun
posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:33 PM | 0 comments

i've got 5 dollars and it's saturday night

komen morale "in the toilet"

genetically modified wheat designed to terrify aphids

ladies, how about going without make up for 60 days?

it's the penguin cam!
posted by skippy at 11:45 AM | 0 comments

happy 7th blogiversary!

to the reaction!

michael stickings has been a great friend to this blog for many years. he is one of the hardest working people in blogtopia, and yes we coined that phrase. so good work, michael and crew, and keep up the good work!
posted by skippy at 1:30 AM | 0 comments

Friday, March 30, 2012

skippy's friday night music club

good night....and good luck.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:06 PM | 0 comments

friday night

gop running out of steam on solyndra "scandal"

more than 1/4 of americans get their news from mobile or tablet devices

prospective employers asking for your facebook password? don't worry, facebook might sue

ghosts love fruit roll-ups!
posted by skippy at 11:15 AM | 0 comments

craig has lists...craig can vote

but he is fighting the good fight to make sure that all americans have that right.
craigslist founder craig newmark is jumping into the voting rights fight, with his group craigconnects publishing an infographic that illustrates the surge of voting restrictions that have been enacted in states around the country in recent years.

“what i learned in high school civics class is that an attack on voting rights is virtually the same as an attack on the country,” newmark said in a statement. - talking points memo
too bad they don't really have civics classes in high school anymore.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:45 AM | 0 comments

maddow moment

if you haven't heard the terry gross interview with rachel, it's really interesting....and no, rachel didn't pull a bill o'reilly.
"when things are done in secret in our name, we can be held accountable for them, even if we can't hold accountable our government for directing it," she says. "and that feels very un-american to me." - rachel maddow.
go take a listen to the interview....here.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:09 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The End of the World As We Know It and I Feel...

Apparently, at 4:00pm EDT tomorrow—3:00pm here in Kansas City [where I'm attending this), 1:00pm for the Left Coasters, around the time the pros are leaving and the patzers are saying "Surf's Up!" in Hawaii—the results of the destruction of SAG the AFTRA merger vote will be announced by Ken Howard and Roberta Reardon.

Since my vague memory is that ballots were to be counted if they were mailed by the 27th and received up to the 30th, I expect this means that I will be expected to subsidize the often-non-union-working AFTRA members to the tune of an extra $82 a year for the Added Value of having pensions and benefits cut without getting a further say in the matter.

Just in case I'm wrong, the idiots Nobel Leaders can be viewed here at that time. (Note the pretense to non-profit, which basically is what acting as a career will be—even more than it is now—as producers reap excessive rents.)

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posted by Ken Houghton at 10:12 PM | 0 comments

one thursday morning

12 republican talking points

obama vs. romney tax plans presented in a very tall graph

veteran animator glen keane is leaving disney studios

come and listen to my story 'bout a man named earl: rip bluegrass legend earl scruggs

and here's earl and some other guys playing foggy mountain breakdown:

posted by skippy at 10:46 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

snowboarding on a wednesday

mitt romney's biggest problem: no one likes him

number of americans who see "too much" religious talk by politicians talk about is at an all-time high

u.s. heatwave has scientists worried

no, it's not a vitaman, but this month marks the anniversary of the theremin
posted by skippy at 11:12 AM | 0 comments

shades of scooby doo

a "ghost ship." think of all the other "stuff" that is being swept up on shore.  roh roh.
an empty japanese fishing boat drifting off the coast of western canada is the first major piece of evidence that japanese tsunami debris is heading to the united states - reuters

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:23 AM | 0 comments

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

skippy's tuesday night music club

haven't heard this one in a bit. and, well, since it is supposed to rain tomorrow...might as well be walking on the sun for the moment.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:00 PM | 1 comments

hungover on a tuesday

at least our priests only molested them! dutch catholic church accused of castrating 10 boys

wal-mart no longer will have greeters at the door

wishful thinking about tax rates

and we're sorry we missed the 75th anniversary of h.p. lovecraft's death
posted by skippy at 11:28 AM | 0 comments

Monday, March 26, 2012

skippy's monday night music club

zou bisou bisou seems to be on everyone's lips today.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:17 PM | 0 comments

except for monday

the fight for paid sick leave in new york

remember the animated musical video pipe dream? now see it in real life

10 illegal baby names

study finds honey bees have personality
posted by skippy at 11:40 AM | 0 comments

Sunday, March 25, 2012

skippy's sunday night music club

it's stormy out tonight. probably will be a stormy monday, too.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:55 PM | 1 comments

environmental news stories sunday

hey....someone should be talking about these things on sunday and you know it "ain't" going to be the same old shellacked hair'd politicians on the talking head shows.

urban sprawl is what happens in vegas. unfortunately, sprawl doesn't just stay in vegas. - treehugger

triumph, tragedy and climate change. the island president. - grist

both coasts watch closely as san francisco faces erosion. - california officials expect climate change to raise sea levels at ocean beach by 14 inches by 2050. should herculean efforts be made to preserve its $220 million wastewater treatment plant and 14-ft-wide sewage pipe, or should the community simply bow to nature? - nytimes

se alaska fisheries investigate, anticipate ocean acidification. - will the carbon output of a growing world economy transform the oceans into an environment that - thanks to basic chemistry - is hostile to alaska’s famed salmon? or will alaskans find ways to mitigate the expected drop in ocean ph? - juneau empire

male domination creates sick urban society, says horticulturalist. - as people with pollen allergies (sniff) already know, botanical sexism is alive and growing in edmonton. most north american cities plant more male bushes, trees and plants than their female counterparts. and this means more pollen. does it increase allergies? - edmonton journal

beef recalled in four states. - sysco seattle inc. is recalling approximately 16,800 pounds of ground beef patties distributed to restaurants in colorado, arizona, texas and washington because of possible e. coli contamination, the u.s. department of agriculture's food safety and inspection service (fsis) said. - denver post

germs in your wallet can make you sick. - germs on money may be making unwary people sick - some notes are more than six times filthier than a public lavatory. a public defender investigation of 10 melbourne, australia shoppers' wallets found cash and credit cards could be potential hotbeds for bacteria - melbourne herald sun

mecca's misery: smell returns after winter break. two days after the dec. 15, 2010, outbreak that had hospitalized two people, the saul martinez school community adjourned for a two-week winter break, hopeful that whatever had caused the stench wouldn't return in the new year. but it did — just about every day for the rest of the school year - palm springs desert sun

pacific gas & electric's effort to deduct fines for san bruno blast. - pacific gas & electric has an astonishing proposal. it wants to deduct likely state fines of $200 million for the deadly san bruno blast from the costs it ran up safety testing other buried gas pipelines after the explosion - sfchron

damaging sea-level rise is on the way. - new peer-reviewed research argues that both sea-level rise and storm-surge elevations will be greater along much of the u.s. coastline than currently predicted. the impact for coastal communities could potentially be devastating. - charlotte observer

at the blunt end of the hockey stick. - anti-intellectualism isn’t a new phenomenon in america. but the current war of words over climate science has taken on the tone of a religious war. michael mann has been on the front lines of this conflict - kqed

georgia ruling on river pollution was an insult. - georgians who live along the ogeechee river have no legal right to challenge a secret state agreement with the company that caused the largest fish kill in georgia’s history. this ruling, from an administrative law judge, is insulting - savannah morning news

dolphins in barataria bay are severely ill, noaa says. - bottlenose dolphins in barataria bay, which received heavy and prolonged exposure to oil during the 2010 gulf spill following the deepwater horizon rig explosion, are showing signs of severe ill health, according to noaa and its research partners - nola times picayune

going green a hit at des moines schools. - efforts to make des moines schools more energy-efficient in the past three years have resulted in $1.7 million in savings, an amount equal to the salary of roughly 47 first-year teachers, district officials said - des moines register

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 4:34 PM | 0 comments

blue sunday

5 of 6 top porn-consuming red states voted for santorum

this is your brain. this is your brain on fiction

is our solar system in a section of the universe just right for life?

isaac asimov's three laws of mitt romney
posted by skippy at 11:05 AM | 0 comments

Saturday, March 24, 2012

the lunatic is on the grass

pink floyd's "dark side of the moon"

released 39 years ago today
posted by skippy at 8:57 PM | 1 comments

cleaning out my walk-in closet

we're a little late with this one, but it's brilliant

will the real mitt romney please stand up? by eminem
posted by skippy at 3:46 PM | 0 comments

i love saturday

mexico's middle class is taking over

separation of church and state, back by popular demand

gee, the plot of "hunger games" sure sounds familiar

idaho racist runs for sheriff
posted by skippy at 10:44 AM | 0 comments

Better, But Still Just A Matter Of Degree...

Earlier this week:

CONCORD, N.H. — New Hampshire lawmakers on Wednesday rejected a bill that would have made their state legislature the first one to repeal a gay marriage law, handing gay-rights supporters a key victory in the Northeast, where same-sex marriage is prevalent.

The state House voted 211-116 to kill the measure, ending a push by its new Republican majority to rescind New Hampshire's 2-year-old gay marriage law. Nevertheless, both sides are pledging to continue fighting into the fall elections.

Repeal opponents hoped to solidify what they argue is public support for gay marriage, while supporters hoped to reverse the law in a region of the country where gay-rights groups have strength.

"Today is a banner day for the freedom to marry," said Craig Stowell, co-chairman of Standing up For New Hampshire Families. Stowell said the House, where Republicans hold a 189-seat advantage, was supposed to give conservatives their best shot at repeal. "They blew it. This was supposed to be the most favorable legislative climate for repeal and they couldn't even get a majority"...

The measure failed dismally, as it deserved to, for two reasons. One, it's an election year, and many if not most of the New Hampshire Republicans who voted against the repeal did so because they're trying to hold onto their jobs. And two, while doing what's right in this case may have been nothing more than their pretext, Republicans here in the northeastern part of the United States at least tend to think things through rationally in spite of their beliefs. I, for one, consider this a welcome change from the stripe of Republicans I had to put up with in Virginia.

Not to say that I like these folks any more than I did their Old Dominion counterparts. Lucky Luciano may have had a lot more class than Dutch Schultz, but fundamentally, both of them were gangsters...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 9:30 AM | 0 comments

Friday, March 23, 2012

friday i'm in love

truck driver stops to use restroom, gets fired

government takes 92-year-old woman's money believing she is dead

world's rarest dolphin species nears extinction

and rip breakfast: the founder of mr. coffee as well as the founder of lender's bagels have died
posted by skippy at 10:27 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 22, 2012

mrs. thursday

fruit flies rejected by females drink more alcohol

the philanthropy jargon generator

the new ipad is not hot enough to cook an egg but hot enough to kill sperm
posted by skippy at 10:37 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

breitbart is here! unfortunately bono is not

the breitbrats get it wrong again. distriction:
his latest ambush? bono! mattera and breitbart.com teamed up for an exclusive!!! in which mattera surprised the u2 frontman with questions about why his band is dodging taxes by moving from ireland to holland. there was only one problem: mattera’s interviewing a bono impersonator in these videos, which have now been set to “private.”

that's right, the not-so-breitbrats ambushed a celebrity impersonator by mistake! and then posted it on the interwebs! in the name of the father, what were they thinking?

tho the original video has been flushed down the memoryhole over at generalissimofranciscofranco.com, you can still see it here.
posted by skippy at 4:15 PM | 0 comments

ruby wednesday

call it the limbaugh effect: conservative talk radio forced to tone it down

hate pro wrestling? blame rick santorum

romney economics adviser jokes about deporting seniors

and newt promises to keep being annoying
posted by skippy at 10:58 AM | 0 comments

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

manning up, or peyton's place


we're happy. we're from denver.
posted by skippy at 7:41 PM | 0 comments

hooray for tuesday

arizona sheriff arpaio sees media conspiracy against birthers

99 housing markets seen as improving

postal closures could mean a change in california voting

if harry potter was an 80's teen flick
posted by skippy at 10:25 AM | 0 comments

Monday, March 19, 2012

dull monday

7 myths about birth control and abortion

study finds chimpanzees have policemen too

the ipad of 1935

it's our duty at skippy international to present to you baby kangaroos
posted by skippy at 11:19 AM | 0 comments

Sunday, March 18, 2012

skippy's sunday night music club

what's a day without a little leon redbone?

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:14 PM | 0 comments

environmental news stories sunday

for those pesky little stories that won't be talked about on the talking head shows....but should be.

who: antibiotic overuse so prevalent scraped knee could be deadly. - overuse of antibiotics has become so prevalent that if the trend continues, a normal infection can become deadly, according to statements made by world health organization director-general dr. margaret chan - cbs news

study ties gmo corn, soybeans to butterfly losses. - the rapid spread of herbicide-resistant crops has coincided with — and may explain — the dramatic decline in monarch numbers that has troubled some naturalists over the past decade, according to a new study by researchers at the university of minnesota and Iowa State - minneapolis star tribune

study shows links between kids taking antibiotics and asthma. - researchers from ubc may have figured out why so many kids have asthma. study author brett finlay says there's a type of bacteria in a person's gut that helps build the immune system. his study suggests antibiotics can wipe out those bacteria, making the person susceptible to asthma. - vancouver news1130

restaurants react to food allergies. - for those of us who are sensitive or allergic to certain foods, eating out can sometimes feel more like a trek through a minefield than a relaxing dining experience - laweekly

$770m trust without funds for polluted neighbors. - a $773 million trust created to find new owners for polluted former gm plants in 14 states, including a 460-acre complex in moraine, does not provide any funding to buy contaminated homes or compensate victims of the pollution - dayton daily news

In west texas, push comes to shove over water restrictions. - water is a contentious issue across Texas, but tensions have been especially high in a 16-county groundwater conservation district stretching from south of lubbock into the panhandle, an area considered part of america’s “breadbasket.” there, farmers reliant on the slowly diminishing ogallala are fighting to maintain their right to pump unrestricted amounts of water. - texas tribune

state policy makers wrestle with how to deal with sea-level rise. - it was once considered prime real estate, but some people are beginning to see connecticut's shoreline another way – as the delicate border between man and a rapidly rising sea - bridgeport ct post

chevron executives barred from leaving brazil over spill. - a brazilian court on saturday barred 17 executives from chevron and transocean from leaving brazil, pending criminal charges related to a high-profile oil spill last november - reuters

oil boom fears flow in michigan's pristine irish hills. - bringing with it concerns about potential earthquakes, contaminated drinking water and dangerous spills, an oil boom has hit the popular, pristine vacation destination of the irish hills. oil companies are seeking more mineral leases and more spots to drill, and now, permits for deep-injection wells to inject their waste fluids underground. - detroit free press

metropolitan water district wages costly war with nature, age. - increasingly frequent shutdowns of the colorado river aqueduct for maintenance and repair are the biggest drivers of rising water bills in southern california - latimes

photoblog - fog and air pollution disrupt travel in beijing. - more than 400 flights to and from beijing airport, including around 35 international services, were cancelled or delayed due to thick fog and strong air pollution covering the city - msnbc

drinking water contamination in the central valley. - a recent study concluded 10 percent of the 2.6 million people sampled in the central valley are at risk from substances linked to cancer in their drinking water - kget tv bakersfield

with a name like "pink slime," it has to be bad. - schools can now opt out of having the unappetizing additive served in their lunchrooms. but why is it even being offered? - denver post

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 4:25 PM | 0 comments

gop's war on women now single out single mothers...

hmmm...wonder why...could it be because single mothers are strong and can raise strong children?
as if it weren’t hard enough already to be a single mom — or dad — a new bill in wisconsin is associating single parenthood with child abuse.

senate bill 507 is sponsored by state sen. glenn grothman and state rep. donald pridemore, both republicans. it takes the state-funded child abuse prevention board to task for not railing against single parenthood. - time magazine

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:53 PM | 0 comments

bloody sunday - city boy

san diego tea party leader arrested for kidnapping & rape

flowchart: are you a slut?

the middle class is not sharing in prosperity

facebook campaign shuts down site selling racist obama stickers
posted by skippy at 11:11 AM | 0 comments

lewis black b slaps rush, et al

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 1:18 AM | 0 comments

Saturday, March 17, 2012

skippy's saturday night music club

remembering the good ol' days of saturday night when john belushi would imitate this guy...joe cocker...

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:35 PM | 0 comments

generalissimo francisco franco is still here

posted by skippy at 9:32 PM | 4 comments

Life is What Happens to You While You're Busy Making Other Plans, Music Edition

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posted by Ken Houghton at 4:22 PM | 1 comments

hootenanny saturday night

60% of americans say pull out of afghanistan

president santorum would take away your porn

10 hilarious right wing freak outs over cartoons

a brief history of the history channel
posted by skippy at 10:29 AM | 1 comments

Friday, March 16, 2012

friday face

sen. richard luger deemed ineligible to vote for his own re-election

atheists will outnumber christians in britain in 20 years

hatred of obama fuels 755% rise in hate groups

lsd helps treat alcoholism
posted by skippy at 11:46 AM | 0 comments

scotts miracle gro's evil seeds

Red-breasted Nuthatch at Our Bird Feeder by Tut99 (Roger)
Red-breasted Nuthatch at Bird Feeder, a photo by Tut99 (Roger) on Flickr.

scotts miracle gro...passing out evil seeds. how can they purposefully do this?
scotts pled guilty this tuesday to charges that the company illegally put insecticides in its “morning song” and “country pride” brands of bird seed. yhat’s right: the company knowingly coated products intended for birds to eat with substances toxic to birds and wildlife. - grist

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 12:45 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 15, 2012

meeting marcus on a thursday

the u.s. army pulls ads from limbaugh show

drop in bird numbers around fukushima plant double that of chernobyl

use your iphone for the chords, and your ipad to strum the strings, and voila! it's a ukulele!!

east lansing, mich, celebrates oldest gay rights ordinance in the u.s.
posted by skippy at 11:54 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

skippy's wednesday night music club

a little "pi" day celebration!

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:32 PM | 0 comments

forget the moon, it's a bad sea on the rise

and, just like many homes in america today, lots of places around the country are going to be "under water."
"sea level rise from global warming has already doubled the risk of extreme coastal floods across the lower 48 states," author ben strauss said today on a conference call.

and the front page new york times story based on the study notes that 3.7 million americans—that's how many live within mere feet of high tides—are now at risk from increasing coastal flooding, thanks to rising sea levels. trisk will grow more acute over coming decades. - treehugger

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:00 PM | 0 comments

It Starts With Voter Apathy...

We had local elections in Hudson, New Hampshire on the 13th. A total of 2,340 ballots were cast (pdf warning -- sorry 'bout this), which works out to around 17 percent of the town's eligible voters bothering to show up, according to the town's website. Granted, it's difficult at best to get excited about stuff like cemetery trustee and checklist supervisor races, but 17 percent voter turnout is just plain dismal, whether you live in a Hudson-sized town, or a village of one hundred, or Los Angeles.

One of the bigger problems with the great majority of voters staying home on any election day is that a small minority of people will determine the winners. For the two selectman positions, for example, Ben Nadeau received 1,004 votes and Nancy Brucker got 894. In effect, Nadeau won with a mere 7.3 percent of the eligible vote, and Brucker won with only 6.5 percent. Hardly representive samples of the voting population, even if they did win fair and square.

That may not seem like a big deal on the local level. But when there's nonsense like what's going on in Pennsylvania -- one party claiming to be combatting voter fraud while attempting to disenfranchise people who are likely to vote for the other party's candidates -- staying home doesn't seem quite so innocuous. If anything, it may encourage those who would suppress people's votes, given the opportunity.

Voter access isn't worth much if it isn't utilized...


posted by Jim Yeager at 7:41 PM | 0 comments

happy "pi" day

3.14 ways you can celebrate pi day

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:21 AM | 0 comments

resolution wednesday

nate silver usually doesn't get it this wrong

after 244 years, encyclopaedia britannica stops printing

single payer success in vermont: how to cover everyone

giada totally misses the point
posted by skippy at 6:10 AM | 0 comments

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

skippy's tuesday night music club

an "oldie" but never moldy.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:40 PM | 0 comments

holy tuesday

both texas and wisconsin finds their voter id laws meeting legal resistance

limbaugh syndicator susoends national advertising for two weeks

for your protection, try the santorum shield

or just try the santorum cocktail

we're happy that armando is still around
posted by skippy at 11:46 AM | 1 comments

since the corporate media is in alabama

you think they might make mention of how the bush administration railroaded the former governor, don siegelman.  probably not.
this case is about the criminalization of first amendment freedoms — the giving and receiving of campaign contribution — based on an indefinite standard that will significantly alter the liberty of constituents to contribute to political campaigns without fear of criminal liability and the desire of citizens to run for political office in a system that largely depends on private contributions. - wsj
former gov. don siegelman's request that the u.s. supreme court review his conviction has the support of more than 100 former state attorneys general, who say the justices need to step in and prevent prosecutors from turning regular political donations into criminal acts.

"because most of us have previously run for political office as candidates aligned with a major party, we are acutely aware that allowing prosecutors to cast a wide net in campaign contribution cases will stifle the legal ability of campaigns to raise needed funds for fear of politically motivated prosecution of themselves and their donors," the group wrote in a brief filed thursday in washington, d.c.-  al.com

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 7:33 AM | 0 comments

das williams goes bald...to fight childhood cancer

my assemblyman das williams shaved his head on monday at a st. baldrick's day event to show support and solidarity with children battling cancer.

“everyone deserves a shot at life and happiness. that is why it is especially tragic when a child faces the prospect of a terminal illness. instead of playing soccer, they make trips to chemotherapy; instead of school dances, they face baldness and surgery.”

“but we can help them beat it. treatments for people who cannot afford them and research for life saving technology are expensive, so every bit helps. by shaving your head, you give them kinship. by donating, you give them hope.”

you can donate to the cause - click here.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 6:55 AM | 0 comments

Monday, March 12, 2012

crush limbaugh

looks bad for wingnut radio. thinkprogress:

thinkprogress has obtained an internal memo from premiere radio networks listing 96 national companies that have “specifically asked” their advertisments not be played during the rush limbaugh show. premiere is the distributor of limbaugh’s program. the advertisers have also requested to be excluded from other right-wing hosts including michael savage, glenn beck and sean hannity. according to the memo, the listed companies’ advertisements should be excluded from these programs because they have been “deemed to be offensive.”

the existance of the memo was first reported over the weekend by radio-info.com, an industry newsletter. radio-info did not publish the full list of companies. the memo eas posted website of the traffic directors guild of america, an association of professionals who distribute paid advertisements to radio stations. it was quickly deleted but thinkprogress obtained a copy from a google snapshot of the site taken on march 9.

previously, thinkprogress has reported that 50 companies requested their advertising be pulled from the rush limbaugh show following his sexist attacks on sandra fluke. the publication of the memo adds an additional 91 companies to the list of companies that have dropped limbaugh...
the article goes on to list those companies by name.

it's ironic to think that last week andrew breitbart died and rush limbaugh committe suicide.
posted by skippy at 2:43 PM | 5 comments

crying like a church on monday

the new gop: stoopid reigns

is it possible to use more of our brains?

why an mri costs $1080 in america and $280 in france

we're tired of these m*therf*cking snakes on this m*therf*cking inclined plane
posted by skippy at 11:37 AM | 0 comments

i think we've lost a bozo on this bus

jill's tribute to peter bergman over @ brilliant @ breakfast
posted by skippy at 11:28 AM | 2 comments

Sunday, March 11, 2012

skippy's sunday night music club

in honor of that big ball of wonderous light in the sky that newt wants to colonize. la luna.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:21 PM | 0 comments

environmental news stories sunday

a little busy...so a little late...but still worth knowing about.

sellafield: 'everything was contaminated: milk, chickens, the golf course.' - six decades after britain's worst nuclear accident, an oral history of sellafield reveals what it felt like to live near the plant - london observer

two years on, tar sands spill casts long shadow. - a look at the fallout from that incident in michigan reveals that a spill of diluted bitumen, the kind from alberta's tar sands that keystone would carry, is a far nastier beast than your typical spill of conventional crude. it also shows that cleaning it up can be just as damaging to the environment as the spill itself. - mother jones

for sale: municipal water rights. - the coloradoan asked 32 municipalities in larimer and weld counties to report how much water they sold to water haulers and oil and gas companies for use in oil and gas well drilling in 2010 and 2011. of the 26 that responded, seven were able to report selling water specifically to oil and gas companies and water haulers - fort collins coloradoans

great lakes ice coverage falls 71 percent over 40 years, researcher says. - ice coverage over the great lakes declined an average of 71 percent over the past 40 years, according to a report from the american meteorological society - msnbc

aspen businesses concerned about ties to us chamber of commerce. - businesses in the city of aspen, colorado, are asking why the town's chamber of commerce is a dues-paying member of the U.S. chamber of commerce, which has opposed climate legislation - denver post

pink slime? nothing wrong with it in school meals, usda says. - pink slime, a controversial ammonium-treated beef, got dumped by mcdonald's. but the usda defends purchases of pink slime for use in the national school lunch program - reuters

the "pink slime" in your kid's school lunch. - like a horror-film villain, "pink slime" – the cheeky nickname for scraps of slaughtered cow that have been pulverized, defatted, subjected to ammonia steam to kill pathogens, and congealed into a filler for ground beef – takes a pounding but keeps coming back. - mother jones

waynesboro organic firm spars with monsanto in seed lawsuit. - countryside organics in Waynesboro was a plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit alleging intimidation and harassment against monsanto. the organic farm supply company wants to appeal the lawsuit, which was thrown out last month by a federal judge - staunton news leader

fukushima starts long road to recovery. - one year after multiple meltdowns there spread radioactive materials across a swath of northern japan, huge technical challenges remain and prospects for resettling the area are uncertain - weekend edition npr

one year after fukushima, japan faces shortages of energy, trust. - the tsunami that knocked out critical back-up cooling power at the fukushima daiichi nuclear power plant on march 11, 2011, is still, in a sense, rolling over Japan's energy system. - national geographic

the oystermen and the sea, one year after Japan's tsunami. - oystermen in the japanese hamlet of samurai-hama should be enjoying a profitable harvest this time of year. but the march 2011 tsunami destroyed much of their equipment and is testing their willingness to persevere - christian science monitor

the silver lining: a land recharged. - thousands of people have been forced from their homes, countless crops and livestock have been lost, and the nsw government estimates it will cost more than $500 million to repair ruined infrastructure. the future, however, looks bright for people on the land - sydney morning herald

economist backs greenpeace reef campaign. - an economic researcher says greenpeace is right to be fighting the coal industry over an increase in coal mines and shipping near the great barrier reef - australia abc news

as eco-terrorism wanes, governments still target activist groups seen as threat. - ben kessler, a student at the university of north texas and an environmental activist, was surprised that an fbi agent questioned his philosophy professor and acquaintances about his activities aimed at influencing local gas drilling rules - washington post

fracking action 'induced' quakes. - a series of small earthquakes in ohio late last year was probably caused by activity from fracking, a review by authorities in the us has concluded - afp

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:01 PM | 0 comments

black sunday

gun ownership is in a 30-year decline

you'd think the free-market libertarians at the cato institute would welcome their new partisan overlords, the koch brothers

98 advertisers withdraw from right wing radio altogether

occupy riverdale
posted by skippy at 12:53 PM | 1 comments

After A While, You Realize...

Time flies:

Ain't that the truth...


posted by Jim Yeager at 9:31 AM | 0 comments

Saturday, March 10, 2012

rest in peace peter bergman

first it's davey jones, now we are incredibly sad to report the passing at age 72 of peter bergman, one of the founding members of the firesign theater, as well as the driving force behind radio free oz.

fans of dense, clever, stupid, silly, politically incorrect and pithy humor loved the firesign theater's comedy albums, which the group was still turning out on a regular basis. these four gentlemen provided multi-layered stories that were funny enough to listen to when one had all of one's facilities about one, but even more devastatingly brilliant when combined with the recreational chemical of your choice.

their work is often described as as joycean in its construction, but to be honest, that's mainly because the 2nd album ends with molly bloom's monologue from "ulysses." (a lesson to future comedians: a great way to be compared to major writers is to steal from them outright!)

the group formed in the late 60's out of peter's radio show in los angeles radio free oz. examiner.com:
actor and writer peter bergman, a founding member of firesign theatre, died thursday march 8th, 2012 from complications of leukemia. in the late '60s and early '70s, bergman, along with phil proctor, david ossman, and philip austin, produced some of most billiant comedy albums of all time.

the comedy group's forays into film were less successful and more compromised than their densely layered and unfettered work in the recording studio. they were hired to write and star in the counterculture western zachariah, but wound up marginalized in the creative process and relegated to supporting roles. 1979's americathon was a watered-down rewrite of proctor and bergman's stage play.

from boingboing.net, here's a radio interview with firesign theatre co-founder phil proctor about the death of his friend and collaborator of over 50 years, and samples of bergman's brilliant work with the group:

louis marshman editorial: [mp3]
shoes for industry: [mp3]
giant toad supermarket: [mp3]
mr. liverface: [mp3]
rock or roll memory bank: [mp3]

from the firesign theater website:
peter’s audio career was launched in high school as an announcer oh the school radio system, from which he was banished after his unauthorized announcement that the chinese communists had taken over the school and that a “mandatory voluntary assembly was to take place immediately.” russell rupp, the school primciple, promptly relieved peter of his announcing gig. rupp was the inspiration for the principle poop character on “don’t crush that dwarf”...

at college, peter was managing editor of the yale comedy magazine. he wrote the lyrics for two musical collaborations with austin pendleton, both of which starred phil proctor. he graduated as a scholar of the house in economics, and played point guard for the liberal basketball league whose members have since lost their dribble but not their politics.

peter spent two graduate years at yale as a carnegie teaching fellow in economics, and as the eugene o’neill playwriting fellow at the drama school. after a six-month stint as a grunt in the u.s. army’s 349th general hospital unit, he went to berlin on a ford foundation fellowship where he joined tom stoppard, derek marlow and piers paul read at the literarisches colloquium berlin. there he wrote and directed his first film, “flowers,” and connected with the living theatre - a major influence on his art.

peter worked briefly in london with spike milligan and the bbc before returning to america in 1966. back in the u.s., he secured a nightly radio show on pacifica’s kpfk in los angeles: “radio free oz,” around which the firesign theatre coalesced and gestated.

peter coined the term “love-in” in 1967, and threw the first such event in april of that same year in los angeles. that event ultimately drew a crowd of some 65,000 people, blocking freeways for miles. this so impressed gary usher, a columbia records staff producer, that he offered the firesign theatre their first record contract.
peter continued writing, producing and acting in media through-out the 80's, 90's and aughts, and was still going strong as of earlier this week. here's peter's last words on radio free oz, podcast last saturday night.

we never knew peter, but we do know phil proctor, and our hearts go out to him, as well as phil austin and dave ossman, and the proctor family.

the firesign theater were more than inspiration for our own comedy career; they were a secret language among high school and college buddies; they were an accurate if skewed view of the world not just as a place to live, but a reality to bend; they were a living koan that showed how one joke can be simultaneously stupid and smart at the same time. and peter was the lynchpin that kept the fires burning in the firesign.

there's one less bozo on the bus, and we'll always remember mudhead.

rest in peace, peter bergman.
posted by skippy at 6:07 PM | 0 comments

get down saturday night

mitt's zombie problem

chart of the day: women and by-lines

but obama has made gains among women

jumpin' jujubes, porgy, it looks like a wasteland! rip peter bergman
posted by skippy at 11:25 AM | 0 comments

Friday, March 09, 2012

friday after next

companies that have dropped rush limbaugh

kevin, you've been wrong before, but this time you're really, really wrong

10 artists who work in trees

who said it: mitt romney or mr. burns?
posted by skippy at 10:31 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 08, 2012

like a summer thursday

for the gop, it's dead man talking points

speed dating with willard

six-legged giant insect hides for 80 years

extraterrestrials, 1975
posted by skippy at 11:08 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

our weekend starts on wednesday

executive pay helped cause the financial crisis

here's your one-stop shop to get rush limbaugh off armed forces radio

abbey road outtakes

and rip toola the otter
posted by skippy at 11:13 AM | 1 comments

Tuesday, March 06, 2012


The last time some nut decided to launch a pre-emptive attack against a Middle Eastern country, the result was an absolute disaster. Now the leader of Israel is talking about doing the same thing to Iran:

WASHINGTON — Taking sharply different stands, President Barack Obama on Monday urged pressure and diplomacy to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear bomb while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emphasized his nation's right to a pre-emptive attack. Even in proclaiming unity, neither leader gave ground on how to resolve the crisis.

Seated together in the Oval Office, Obama and Netanyahu at times tried to speak for each other, and other times spoke past one another. The president and prime minister are linked by the history and necessity of their nations' deep alliance, if not much personal warmth, and both sought to steer the Iran agenda on their terms.

"I know that both the prime minister and I prefer to resolve this diplomatically," Obama said. "We understand the costs of any military action."

If he agreed, Netanyahu said nothing about sanctions or talks with Iran, or Obama's position that there still is time to try to deter Iran peacefully. Instead, Netanyahu drew attention back to Obama's acknowledgement that Israel is a sovereign land that can protect itself how it sees fit.

"I believe that's why you appreciate, Mr. President, that Israel must reserve the right to defend itself," Netanyahu said.

Israel, he added, must remain "the master of its fate."

Israel has not yet decided whether to launch a unilateral strike on Iran, a point underscored in the White House meetings...

That may only be because Obama hasn't flat-out told him to go to hell. This Bibi dude sounds like the kind of guy who likes to start fights in barrooms that others have to finish...

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posted by Jim Yeager at 2:39 PM | 1 comments

fat tuesday

executive pay helped cause the financial crisis

the limbaugh effect: obama approval up 7% with women

one in seven americans pursued by debt collectors

sluts for obama
posted by skippy at 10:57 AM | 1 comments

Monday, March 05, 2012


Rush Limbaugh played Peter Gabriel's "Sledgehammer" during the three days of his on-the-air, off-the-wall speculations about Sandra Fluke's sex life. You'd think being a deeply repressed wingnut mysogynist with erectile dysfunction and a severely bloated ego (God called, Rush; He wants His talent back) would be enough for that pompous dumbass, but no -- he had to drag a beautiful rock 'n roll song into the mud along with him as well.

Well, that didn't go over very well with Gabriel*:

Peter was appalled to learn that his music was linked to Rush Limbaugh's extraordinary attack on Sandra Flute (sic). It is obvious from anyone that knows Peter's work that he would never approve such a use. He has asked his representatives to make sure his music is withdrawn and especially from these unfair aggressive and ignorant comments.

Good to hear it. And it's good to hear this, especially without Limbaugh yammering over it:

While I'm at it, here's a petition to the Armed Forces Network to pull Limbaugh from its programming. He's built up one real mess of bad karma from decades of spewing ignorant crap on the airwaves. It's about time he started working it off...

(*: via)

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posted by Jim Yeager at 6:54 PM | 0 comments

come next monday

the gop's radioactive anti-obama rhetoric

scientist who discovered hepatitus c says he now discovered the vaccine

miss manners for republicans

sci-fi titles as they should be (more and yet more)

and rest in peace gw bush impersonator (you saw him on the tonite show) steve bridges
posted by skippy at 10:26 AM | 1 comments

Sunday, March 04, 2012

we'd pay to see this movie

posted by skippy at 4:48 PM | 1 comments

best sunday dress

medical marijuana: the best and safest pain killer compared to oxy

10 reasons the gop wants to ditch the constitution

join occupy college teach ins

u.s. chamber of commerce wants to buy a senate seat
posted by skippy at 1:52 PM | 2 comments

say hello

to demeur
posted by skippy at 10:15 AM | 1 comments

Saturday, March 03, 2012

say hello

to the mergers daily and to tina-desiree berg, who is also a sag member and blogger, and is also voting no on the sag-aftra merger.
posted by skippy at 8:20 PM | 0 comments

drive-in saturday

mr. santorum, we do not think that word means whatbyou think it means

baby dingoes open their eyes

'the dirty 30" are the top u.s. companies that paid no taxes

remember that experiment that disproved einstein's theory of relativity? turns out it was just a loose wire
posted by skippy at 11:41 AM | 0 comments

Friday, March 02, 2012

freaky friday

study finds marijuana smoke not so harmful to lungs

kellogg's creates totes amazeballs cereal in response to a single tweet

man's childhood comic collection fetches $3.5 mill at auction

the chattanooga vibrator - 1904
posted by skippy at 10:28 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, March 01, 2012

judge allows anti-sag/aftra merger lawsuit to proceed

it's full steam ahead as the last hurdle to sue the officers of the screen actors guild in an effort to stop the balloting has been jumped. variety:

the federal judge in the anti-merger lawsuit against the screen actors guild has authorized the plaintiffs to proceed with their amended complaint, which asks for a jury trial, attorneys fees and monetary damages.

u.s. district court judge james otero granted the motion wednesday, a week after the initial four-count civil complaint was filed in los angeles. plaintiffs allege the sag and its leaders are attempting to merge with the american federation of television and radio artists "without conducting the necessary due diligence." sag has labeled the suit "a clear attempt at circumventing the will of the membership" and "a public relations stunt" and filed a motion this week to dismiss it.

"having considered the evidence and legal arguments, this court finds that plaintiffs have satisfied all pre-suit requirements pursuant to statute and demonstrated good cause for the action to proceed," otero said in his order…

the plaintiffs -- who include martin sheen and ed harris -- are claiming that the sag and its leaders are actively denying sag members the right to full and fair disclosures and a meaningful vote regarding merger. the finding by otero means that statutory pre-suit requirements have been met to pursue a breach of fiduciary duty claim.
no word on how that will effect the voting on the ballots that were mailed out the beginning of this week.
posted by skippy at 8:35 PM | 1 comments

Why I'm Voting "No" on the SAG-AFTRA Merger Part 3

[ed. note: third in a series by actor/blogger Gil Christner]

There is yet another very big problem I have with the current proposal to merge SAG and AFTRA, the two national performers unions. Mainly, the actual, finalize merger proposal does absolutely nothing to address, let alone resolve, any of the problems the merger itself was touted as the only solution for.

The grand idea of all actors working under the same contract is, at this point in time (ie, while voting to merge) nothing more than that: a grand idea. NO outline, plan or study to address what that contract could be, or when it will take effect or how we will achieve it, is in existence. “One Contract” doesn’t even exist on paper. The Pro-Merger contingent seems to advise “Let’s merge into a brand new union, then we’ll figure out how to merge into a brand new union!”

In my opinion, there’s a more than excellent chance that Management would use the opportunity of a brand new union to insist on negotiating from scratch, and we would be in very real danger of facing rollbacks, if not outright loss of benefits and achievements.

One reason I think this? It’s known far and wide throughout television acting communities that today, for the lower tiered actor, (ie not top of show stars), an AFTRA contract, while paying a higher session fee (pay for the actual workdays of filming), nonetheless much fewer and smaller residuals than under a SAG contract.

I can foresee management insisting they pay the new “all inclusive union” not much more than they used to pay under AFTRA old contracts. I can foresee SAG residuals being the first Union Achievement to be on the chopping block.

Trust me, as someone who has made a very nice career out of residuals paid for repeat showings of my unique, hard work, I fear for the future generation of actors who will not be able to make a living at this.

And, going back to the Health and Pension Plans, there is NOTHING in the current proposal to address merging of the actual contributions.

One of the biggest talking points of the Pro-Merger contingent is that all too often an actor doesn’t make enough to qualify for insurance. Under both contracts, an actor must make a certain threshold of money in union-sanctioned employment to qualify for insurance converage. I have to make at least $10,000 in a year under AFTRA contracts to gain minimum coverage (for myself alone; dependents can be paid for in higher premiums).

Theoretically, said the Pro-Merger Union Officers, One Union would mean all paychecks go towards insurance qualification! Certainly, in theory; in theory, all men are brothers and peace shall rule the world.

However in reality, actors will still be working under separate SAG and AFTRA contracts after the merger. There is no apparatus even proposed to deal with the problem the merger is supposed to alleviate.

In my opinion, another actuarial report like the 2003 Mercer Report will be needed. Who knows how long that would take? Not that I am terribly concerned about how long an actuarial report would take; I welcome the idea of slowing down, studying and analyzing the merger. But it makes no sense to hurry up and merge because we want to make insurance easier for the members, then having to wait for months (if not years) while it’s being studied and discussed. In other words, this Merger proposal doesn’t do anything to resolve the problem of Health Insurance for its members.

Here’s one other complaint I have about the merger: Going back to Broadcasters in AFTRA who can work non-union with impunity, I am quite upset with the dues apparatus installed in the merger proposal. In it, Broadcasters who make above $100,000 annually will be charged at a rate of 0.274% of their earnings (capped at $250,000) for their yearly dues. Actors, however, will pay $1.575% on all their earnings (capped at $500,000). Smelly, to say the least, to this character actor.

[Part 1 here. Part 2 here. More later]

posted by skippy at 2:19 PM | 3 comments

lazy thursday

the return of occupy wall street

whoever the gop nominee is, hard-core conservatives have already won

veteran not allowed to use vet id card as id for voting

canadians agree: it's time to legalize marijuana

and rest in peace (this is not a joke) andrew breitbart

addendum: if you can't say anything nice about breitbart, don't say anything. instead, read balloon juice
posted by skippy at 9:39 AM | 3 comments