Saturday, December 20, 2008

By David Horsey

Confidence Builder

Holy crap, we're even more not-scared now. We're circling the drain, says Joseph Biden, future vice-president of these United Snakes, in an interview w/ tiny George Stephanopoulos to air Sun. Little George was so fucking excited, though, that he had to spill the beans in one of those "web-boy" things the kids have now.
Vice President-Elect Joe Biden said the U.S. economy is in danger of "absolutely tanking" and will need a second stimulus package in the $600-billion to $700-billion range. "The economy is in much worse shape than we thought it was in," Biden told me [.] [...] "There is no short run other than keeping the economy from absolutely tanking. That's the only short run," Biden told me.
That Ross Perot sucking sound has become the gurgling of a toilet about to be firmly flushed.

I Invoke You, Azrael, O Prince Of Darkness

We'd never heard of Linda Hirshman until she & that Megan McArdle we specifically mock (rather than the all-purpose but scattershot mockery here) got into some sort of public disagreement, though merely "Internet public," so there was no physical confrontation, hair-pulling or any of that other stuff, voyeuristic pigs. On the basis of her having complained to Mlle. McA. about a mis-spelling, we'll link to Ms. Hirshman's imaginative compilation of Big Rick Warren's various statements into what his (imaginary) Inaugural invocation might be. If he weren't a big fat coward hiding his insane beliefs from the larger, semi-rational public, that is. (It's no wonder we'd never heard of Hirshman before: she seems to be stuck at a site called the HuffingPost, which to us just sounds dangerous to brain cells. Maybe some exposure here will help her career, even in this economy. We're always giving back, you know.)

A Doll's House

This photo looks like a horror movie is about to break out. What's really going on here?
Marie Osmond holds her "Adora Pink Flamingo Belle" doll (L) and "Baby Elvis Military" doll during a doll signing event at the Flamingo Las Vegas, December 12, 2008. Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
The concept of the "Baby Elvis Military" doll is alien to us &, we fervently hope, to all other decent Americans as well. The JonBenet number on the left is too hideous even to contemplate.

Cinema Corner

Hey there film fans, today we have allegedly Marxist film criticism to keep you busy until Mommie wakes up. We shall look at what the author terms "Sagebrush Noir," & try to figure if he's cracked or what. Not that it would be astonishing & unprecedented for a studio hack to re-hack a gangster script as a Western. If you'd wanted to read anything you'd have clicked away by now, so let's look at posters of three of the four flicks Mr. Shepler (Dare we say it?) deconstructs. Most of the traffic here is for images anyway, not the cleverwriting; so here, we give up. Three out of four isn't bad, unless one of the three is the cover of the sound-track album.Of course, one wouldn't be much of a Marxist film crit w/o a French poster.Here in Gawd's own English, big & colorful, the best known of the four.

Invocation of My Demon Brother

Lotsa stink about goateed bloviator Rick Warren giving the Inaugural "invocation," whatever that might be. Are they summoning demons? What is being invoked then, good weather? Does the new high-tech green economy require witchcraft to get rolling? Here's a bit of the stink, from TIME.
He then helpfully added that he's also "opposed to an older guy marrying a child and calling that a marriage." The reporter, who may have been a little surprised, asked, "Do you think those are equivalent to gays getting married?" "Oh, I do," Warren immediately answered. I wish the reporter had asked the next logical follow-up: If gays are like child-sex offenders, shouldn't we incarcerate them?
Reminds us of the "If abortion is murder, do you want to lock up women & doctors for life?" question. John Aravosis of AMERICAblog is on this like wrinkles on a cheap suit, & has a link to audio of Big Boy Warren extolling Syria. You know, the terrorist supporting, Israel-hating Syria. We also present your president-to-be, 28 yrs. ago.

Today in History - Dec. 20 by The Associated Press – 2 hrs 22 mins ago

Today is Saturday, Dec. 20, the 355th day of 2008. There are 11 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: Two Hundred & five yrs. ago, in 1803, the Louisiana Purchase was completed as ownership of the territory was formally transferred from France to the United States during ceremonies in New Orleans. Not as High a Light, According to the AP: In 1790, the first successful cotton mill in the United States began operating at Pawtucket, R.I. In 1860, South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union. In 1945, the Office of Price Administration announced the end of tire rationing, effective Jan. 1st, 1946. In 1963, the Berlin Wall was opened for the first time to West Berliners, who were allowed one-day visits to relatives in the Eastern sector for the holidays. Forty yrs. ago, in 1968, author John Steinbeck died in New York at age 66. In 1976, Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley died at age 74. Thirty yrs. ago, in 1978, former White House chief of staff H.R. Haldeman was released from prison after serving 18 months for his role in the Watergate cover-up. In 1987, more than 4,300 people were killed when the Dona Paz, a Philippine passenger ship, collided with the tanker Vector off Mindoro island. In 1989, the United States launched Operation Just Cause, sending troops into Panama to topple the government of Gen. Manuel Noriega. In 1999, the Vermont Supreme Court ruled that homosexual couples were entitled to the same benefits and protections as wedded couples. Ten yrs. ago: Nkem Chukwu gave birth in Houston to five girls and two boys, 12 days after giving birth to another child, a girl. (However, the tiniest of the octuplets died a week later.) Five yrs. ago: Spain's prime minister, Jose Maria Aznar, paid a surprise visit to Spanish soldiers in Iraq. Friends and relatives of Michael Jackson descended on his Neverland Ranch to show their support for the entertainer as he fought child molestation charges (Jackson was later acquitted). One yr. ago: Police used chemical spray and stun guns on protesters outside a New Orleans City Council meeting where members unanimously supported demolition of 4,500 public housing units for redevelopment. Thieves broke into the Sao Paulo Museum of Art in Brazil and made off with paintings by Pablo Picasso and Candido Portinari. A British judge acquitted the only man charged with murder in Northern Ireland's deadliest terror attack: the 1998 car bombing that killed 29 people in the town of Omagh. Utah opened the bowl season with a wild 35-32 victory over the Navy Midshipmen in the Poinsettia Bowl. Today's Birthdays: Actress Audrey Totter is 91. Comedian Charlie Callas is 81. Actor John Hillerman is 76. Actress Kathryn Joosten is 69. Rock musician-music producer Bobby Colomby is 64. Rock musician Peter Criss is 63. Psychic/illusionist fake & con-man Uri Geller is 62. Producer Dick Wolf ("Law & Order") is 62. Rock musician Alan Parsons is 60. Actress Jenny Agutter is 56.
Actress Blanche Baker is 52.
Rock singer Billy Bragg is 51. Mike Watt (The Secondmen, Minutemen, fIREHOSE) is 51.[Mike is apparently enjoying his special day in Tokyo. — Ed.] Thought for Today: "There are two days in the week about which and upon which I never worry. Two carefree days, kept sacredly free from fear and apprehension. One of these days is Yesterday. ... And the other ... is Tomorrow." — Robert Jones Burdette, American clergyman and author (1844-1914). [Stupid is as stupid does — Ed.]

Supposedly Entertaining History: On Dec. 20, 1958, George Harrison, Paul McCartney and John Lennon performed as The Quarrymen at the wedding reception of Harrison's brother, Harry. ["It was 50 yrs. ago today..." — Ed.] In 1967, singer Ian Anderson and bassist Glenn Cornick formed Jethro Tull. Also in 1967, singer Jimmy Rodgers was beaten during a roadside attack in Los Angeles. He had to have three brain operations and had a steel plate put into his skull. In 1973, singer Bobby Darin died during open heart surgery. He was 37. In 1975, former James Gang member Joe Walsh joined The Eagles. He replaced Bernie Leadon, who left The Eagles for a solo career. [How'd that work out for ya, banjo boy? — Ed.] In 1981, the musical "Dreamgirls," which was loosely based on the career of Diana Ross and the Supremes, premiered on Broadway. In 1986, Randy Travis joined the Grand Ole Opry. In 1995, the members of The Drifters were forbidden to leave Guyana after a series of concerts. They owed about $4,000 in entertainment taxes. In 2006, Eminem and Kim Mathers were divorced for a second time. They had first married in 1999 and divorced in 2001. They remarried in January 2006 and he field for divorce again that April. In 2007, Eddie Van Halen and Valerie Bertinelli settled their divorce. [Why & how could anyone possibly give a hoot? — Ed.]

Associated Press

Friday, December 19, 2008

While We're At It, Let's Screw Up 36,000 Lives Directly, & Who Knows How Many Others Indirectly

Kenneth Starr & the Sex Police are back. How much is the LDS Church (Mormon) paying Creepy Ken for this?
The Yes on 8 campaign filed a brief arguing that because the new law holds that only marriages between a man and a woman are recognized or valid in California, the state can no longer recognize the existing same-sex unions. The document reveals for the first time that opponents of same-sex marriage will fight in court to undo those unions that already exist. "Proposition 8's brevity is matched by its clarity. There are no conditional clauses, exceptions, exemptions or exclusions," reads the brief co-written by Kenneth Starr, dean of Pepperdine University's law school and the former independent counsel who investigated President Bill Clinton. [...] Both Attorney General Jerry Brown, whose office is scheduled to submit its own brief to the court Friday, and gay rights groups maintain that the gay marriage ban may not be applied retroactively. The Supreme Court could hear arguments in the litigation as soon as March. The measure's backers announced Friday that Starr, a former federal judge and U.S. solicitor general, had signed on as their lead counsel and would argue the cases. Salon provides breaking news articles from the Associated Press as a service to its readers, but does not edit the AP articles it publishes. Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Instant Karma, or: Death By Spite

Below: Paul Weyrich, not long before his death.
Eventual karma, if not instant, but what's a head-line for?
The cause of death was not immediately known, but Weyrich had faced a number of medical crises over the last dozen years, including diabetes and the amputation of both legs in 2005. [...] In 2001 he was roundly attacked from the right and left for writing in an Easter letter to supporters that "Christ was crucified by the Jews." One critic, a writer for a conservative publication, called him a "demented anti-Semite." Weyrich said his comment was misconstrued and he apologized.
We're absolutely certain that his statement was entirely out of context. That's why he was able to clarify it rather than apologize. Huh? Read it again?

No More Shoes!

Well, three more. And some Republican shoe "humor."

Annals of Anti-Theism (One of Quite a Few)

C. Hitchens, at it again, on the bloated Rick Warren. (Show some compassionate X-ianity & let a starving wretch have one of your second or third helpings sometime, Dick. Oh, it's Rick? Sorry, natural mistake, heh-heh.) Although the sub-head is a fine shortening. If we must have an officiating priest, surely we can do better than this vulgar huckster.

Meth Capital of Alaska?

When Sarah Palin first appeared on the national scene, there was mention that her hometown of Wasilla was the "meth capital of Alaska." This was not further explored by the national media, what w/ Gov. P., her interviews, wardrobe and enthusiastically greeted campaign stops being more than enough to keep that ol' blah blah blah "media" distracted. And what if Wasilla is Alaskan Meth HQ (other than The Gov.'s having been the mayor)? The criminal element, even in a crime "capital," is a minuscule part of the population. As a resident of Los Angeles, we're certain that every heinous activity known to man & beast is occurring w/in ten miles of us; probably a 'phone call away if we knew the number. (Probably w/in five miles, too, but we're being conservative.) This, however, is a different deal entirely. We hope, guess & assume that the Palins, & illegitimate father Levi Johnston (the next generation of Heath-Palin-Johnstons is due Sat., by the way) have nothing to do w/ any of this, but they're just a few degrees of separation short of veep material here. One heart-beat from the presidency, but two or three from the meth lab? We think not. NB: The accused are presumed innocent until proven guilty. No charges had been filed by end of business yesterday, Ms. Johnston is out on bail, & for all we know, the only thing even remotely resembling criminal activity on her part may have been giving a Midol© to a 13 yr. old, or growing some you-know-what in the back yard. But speaking of the Johnston backyard, it's the middle of December in Alaska (we're assuming this is a picture of the bust Wednes., as Ms. J. looks to be "hiding" some bracelets behind her back, although she doesn't have much of a "Holy fuck, I've just been busted, & I'm in handcuffs!" expression) & there's no snow on the ground? Snow in Malibu or not, global warming/change is here.

Or maybe not. Further investigation reveals this to be an "archive" shot: "AL GRILLO / Associated Press archive 2008 /" Maybe she was practicing going around in handcuffs earlier this yr. Or simply has dishpan hands.

Shoes for Industry! Shoes for the Dead!! (In Contrasty B&W)

Note how the artist has drawn Dear Leader as a turkey:And the Grand Prize winner, for both the B&W & Color divisions, is:

Another Triumph of Colonialism

Top envoy for Africa: Zimbabwe has collapsed
U.S. official warns of impending Somalia-scale chaos, worsening disease
Updated 2:30 p.m. PT, Thurs., Dec. 18, 2008
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) - Zimbabwe has collapsed, and the world must act now to keep it from deteriorating into Somalia-scale chaos, the top U.S. envoy for Africa said Thursday. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer said questions about how much longer Zimbabwe can withstand hunger, disease and political stalemate before disintegrating ignore that "there is a complete collapse right now."

Operation Bringing Democracy to Iraq, Or Else

Watch this, wherein, after jarhead Scott Ritter, cross-eyed Ron Christie, flag lapel pin firmly attached, assures us that "democracy is flourishing" or some such crap in Iraq.
Is that the spin on the arrest of the 35 Iraqi Interior Ministry people accused of plotting to bring back the Baath party? That democracy has triumphed? Here's the clearest indication that democracy isn't exactly blooming in Iraq:
[O]fficials also said that the arrests had come at the hand of an elite counterterrorism force that reports directly to the office of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki.
You see, Ron Christie & others who spout the party line, when the P. M. of a nation has "an elite counterterrorism force that reports directly to [his] office" that is a secret police force, whether it's called a "counterterrorism forcee or the plumbers. And when 
Rumors of coups, conspiracies and new alliances abound in the Iraqi capital a month before provincial elections. Critics of Mr. Maliki say he has been using arrests to consolidate power.
And
Iraq is a nation where leadership has often changed by coup, and as next month’s provincial elections approach, worry about violence is increasing. So are accusations about politically charged detentions.
The only thing flourishing is instability.

Matt Bors Item

Below is what we anxiously await, as mentioned in the nihilistic feature two items down.

He Said It, He Meant It

George W. Bush:
"I've abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system." — Washington, D.C., Dec. 16, 2008
Per Slate, see him say it at 1:40.

"So Tired, Tired of Waiting..."

It's the purgatory of limbo in here, & we aren't referring to our eating habits. There's the between administrations limbo, & the nihilist's anxious waiting for tangible, visible evidence of the upcoming economic horror. As far as we can determine, there's plenty of media blather, but other than a distinct lack of restaurant patronage, easily noted by the expectant faces atop white shirts peering out the windows of eateries all over, the country hasn't yet fallen apart, & the sheep are still taking it. 
In Greece, the entire fucking country goes nuts for more than a week over the police murder (alleged) of an unknown teen-ager. In AmeriKKKa, the national treasury is poured directly into the pockets of the financiers, even as the auto workers & their pig manufacturing bosses are left to twist in the wind as certain Southern Senators plot to sell American workers to the Japanese & Kraut automakers our boys died to kill a mere 60 odd yrs. ago, and the story is "covered" on the op-ed page, not reported as news or information that might be of use to someone.
The late Jimbo Morrison wanted to "get my kicks, before the whole shithouse goes up in flames." We've had our kicks, how much longer must we wait for the flames?

For The Widows & Orphans

There's been enough time for the cartoonists to get their shoes on, & for us to collect a few. (Just a few, believe us.)

Show Biz Today (In History)

In 1955, Carl Perkins recorded "Blue Suede Shoes" at Sun Records in Memphis. In 1957, the musical "The Music Man," starring Robert Preston, opened on Broadway. In 1975, the C.W. McCall single "Convoy" went gold in the US. In 1980, Dolly Parton's first movie, "9 to 5," opened nationwide. In 1985, country singer Johnny Paycheck was arrested for shooting a man during a fight in Hillsboro, Ohio. He was released from jail in 1991. In 1991, Oliver Stone's controversial film "JFK" premiered in Dallas, where President Kennedy was assassinated in 1963. In 1995, one person was killed and several others injured on the set of the Disney movie "Gone Fishin'." A boat used in a stunt went out of control and landed on a group of people. In 1997, the movie "Titanic" opened. It was the most expensive movie ever made. In 2000, musician Pops Staples of The Staple Singers died at his home outside Chicago at the age of 84. He had been recovering from a concussion suffered four weeks earlier. That same day, guitarist Rob Buck of 10,000 Maniacs died of complications from liver failure. He was 42.
Associated Press

Ho, Ho, Ho Chi Minh! NLF is Gonna Win!!

Today in History - Dec. 19

By The Associated PressAP - 1 hour 16 minutes ago

Today is Friday, Dec. 19, the 354th day of 2008. There are 12 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

In 1843, "A Christmas Carol," by Charles Dickens, was first published in England.

On this date:

In 1777, Gen. George Washington led his army of about 11,000 men to Valley Forge, Pa., to camp for the winter.

In 1813, British forces captured Fort Niagara during the War of 1812.

In 1907, 239 workers died in a coal mine explosion in Jacobs Creek, Pa.

In 1932, the British Broadcasting Corporation began transmitting overseas with its Empire Service to Australia.

In 1946, war broke out in Indochina as troops under Ho Chi Minh launched widespread attacks against the French.

In 1957, Meredith Willson's musical play "The Music Man" opened on Broadway.

In 1972, Apollo 17 splashed down in the Pacific, winding up the Apollo program of manned lunar landings.

In 1974, Nelson A. Rockefeller was sworn in as the 41st vice president of the United States.

In 1986, Lawrence E. Walsh was appointed independent counsel to investigate the Iran-Contra affair.

In 1997, a SilkAir Boeing 737-300 plunged from the sky, crashing into an Indonesian river and killing all 104 people aboard.

Ten years ago: President Bill Clinton was impeached by the Republican-controlled House for perjury and obstruction of justice (he was later acquitted by the Senate). Two days after his confession of marital infidelity, Bob Livingston told the House he wouldn't serve as its next speaker. President Clinton halted airstrikes against Iraq after a fourth day of attacks.

Five years ago: Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi agreed to halt his nation's drive to develop nuclear and chemical weapons. Design plans were unveiled for the signature skyscraper - a 1,776-foot glass tower - at the site of the World Trade Center in New York City. Death claimed actress Hope Lange at age 70 and actor Les Tremayne at age 90.

One year ago: President George W. Bush signed legislation increasing fuel-efficiency standards for vehicles and requiring wider use of ethanol. An explosion and fire at a chemical plant in Jacksonville, Fla., killed four workers. An express train derailed in southern Pakistan, killing at least 40 people. Former Hyundai CEO Lee Myung-bak won South Korea's presidency. Rescuers found Frederick Dominguez and his three children, who had been lost in the mountains for three days during a snowstorm, in a northern California ravine.

Today's Birthdays: Country singer Little Jimmy Dickens is 88. Composer-lyricist Robert Sherman ("Mary Poppins") is 83. Actress Cicely Tyson is 75. Rhythm-and-blues singer-musician Maurice White (Earth, Wind and Fire) is 67. Actor Tim Reid is 64. Paleontologist Richard E. Leakey is 64. Rock singer Alvin Lee (Ten Years After) is 64. Actress Elaine Joyce is 63. Musician John McEuen is 63. Singer Janie Fricke is 61.Jazz musician Lenny White is 59. Actor Mike Lookinland is 48. Actress Jennifer Beals is 45. Actress Kristy Swanson is 39. Model Tyson Beckford is 38. Actress Amy Locane is 37. Actress Rosa Blasi is 36. Actress Alyssa Milano is 36. Actor Jake Gyllenhaal is 28. Actress Marla Sokoloff is 28. Rapper Lady Sovereign is 23. Thought for Today: "Politics is the art of preventing people from taking part in affairs which properly concern them." - Paul Valery, French poet and critic (1871-1945).

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Longest Two Minutes & 48 Seconds in Recording History

Not So Hidden Agenda

They want to force what down my throat w/ their extra rights?

Blindingly Obvious Question of the Season

Is the holiday album concept played out?
We haven't been watching as much telebision as is our usual habit lately, but we haven't been over saturated w/ X-mess tunes. Subjective or objective?

Today in History - By The Associated Press

Dec. 18 The Associated Press — Thursday, December 18, 2008; 12:01 Today is Thursday, Dec. 18, the 353rd day of 2008. There are 13 days left in the year. Today's Highlight in History: On Dec. 18, 1865, the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, abolishing slavery, was declared in effect by Secretary of State William H. Seward. On this date: In 1787, New Jersey became the third state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. In 1892, Tchaikovsky's ballet "The Nutcracker" publicly premiered in St. Petersburg, Russia. In 1915, President Woodrow Wilson, widowed the year before, married Edith Bolling Galt at her Washington home. In 1940, Adolf Hitler ordered secret preparations for Nazi Germany to invade the Soviet Union. (Operation Barbarossa was launched in June 1941.) In 1944, in a pair of rulings, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the wartime relocation of Japanese-Americans, but also said undeniably loyal Americans of Japanese ancestry could not continue to be detained. In 1956, Japan was admitted to the United Nations. In 1957, the Shippingport Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, the first public, full-scale commercial nuclear facility to generate electricity in the United States, went on line. (It was taken out of service in 1982.) In 1958, the world's first communications satellite, SCORE (Signal Communication by Orbiting Relay Equipment), nicknamed "Chatterbox," was launched by the United States aboard an Atlas rocket. In 1972, the United States began heavy bombing of North Vietnamese targets during the Vietnam War. (The bombardment ended 11 days later.) In 1980, former Soviet Premier Alexei N. Kosygin died at age 76. Ten years ago: The House debated articles of impeachment against President Bill Clinton. U.S. and British forces blasted Iraq with a third day of airstrikes. South Carolina carried out the nation's 500th execution since capital punishment resumed in 1977. Five years ago: Two federal appeals courts ruled the U.S. military could not indefinitely hold prisoners without access to lawyers or American courts. A jury in Chesapeake, Va., convicted teenager Lee Boyd Malvo of two counts of capital murder in the Washington-area sniper shootings (he was later sentenced to life in prison without parole). A judge in Seattle sentenced confessed Green River Killer Gary Ridgway to 48 consecutive life terms. Michael Jackson was formally charged with molesting a cancer-stricken boy at his Neverland Ranch; Jackson was acquitted at trial. One year ago: The White House said President George W. Bush had approved "a significant reduction" in the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile, cutting it to less than one-quarter its size at the end of the Cold War. The U.N. Security Council voted unanimously to extend the U.S.-led multinational force in Iraq for one year. Jacob Zuma was elected leader of the African National Congress, South Africa's ruling party, defeating imcumbent Thabo Mbeki. Today's Birthday: Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark is 81. Thought for Today: "Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." — Anais Nin, American author (1903-1977).

Entertainment On This Date: In 1957, the film "Bridge On The River Kwai" premiered in New York. In 1964, funeral services were held in Chicago for singer Sam Cooke, who had been shot and killed in Los Angeles. Fans broke glass and caused other damage to the funeral home where Cooke's body was displayed in a glass-covered coffin.In 1971, Jerry Lee Lewis divorced his cousin, Myra Gale Brown. They had married in 1957 when she was 13. In 1983, Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards married model Patti Hansen in Mexico, on his 40th birthday. Mick Jagger was his best man. In 1984, actress Jamie Lee Curtis married comedian Christopher Guest of "Saturday Night Live" in Rob Reiner's home in Los Angeles. In 1991, actor Deforest Kelley, know for his role as Dr. McCoy on "Star Trek," got a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 1995, Kenny G and his family escaped a fire that caused $275,000 dollars damage to their home in suburban Los Angeles. In 1997, comedian Chris Farley was found dead in his apartment in Chicago of a cocaine and morphine overdose. He was 33. In 2003, Michael Jackson was formally charged with seven counts of lewd or lascivious acts up on a child and two counts of adminstering an intoxicating agent. He was acquitted of the charges. Today's Entertainment Birthdays: Television writer-producer Hal Kanter is 90. Actor Roger Smith is 76. Blues musician Lonnie Brooks is 75. Rock singer-musician Keith Richards is 65.Writer-director Alan Rudolph is 65. Movie producer-director Steven Spielberg is 62. Blues artist Rod Piazza is 61. Movie director Gillian Armstrong is 58. Movie reviewer Leonard Maltin is 58. Rock musician Elliot Easton is 55. Actor Ray Liotta is 53. Actor Brad Pitt is 45. Actress Rachel Griffiths is 40. Singer Alejandro Sanz is 40. Country/rap singer Cowboy Troy is 38. Rapper DMX is 38. Tennis player Arantxa Sanchez Vicario is 37. DJ Lethal (Limp Bizkit) is 36. Actress Katie Holmes is 30. Singer Christina Aguilera is 28. Christian rock musician Dave Luetkenhoelter (Kutless) is 26.

© 2008 The Associated Press

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Dana Perino, Up Close & Personal

"We hope you heal up real quick."

Get Out Your Pencils, It's Essay Time

More compare & contrast: 

Latin America leaders tell Obama to end Cuba embargo

Bolivia: Expel all US ambassadors

Obama Goes Too Far This Time

What's w/ Cowboy Ken here? Besides the redneck hat & tie, is he any relation to long-time Portugese "strongman" Antonio de Oliveira Salazar? At this point nothing would surprise us. Note fascist lapel pins. Photo: Jeff Haynes/REUTERS

From The Elite Liberal Bias Media

Dirty non-Anglos from south of the porous border make mock of Dear Leader. The horror, the shame.

Latin leaders joke about Bush shoe attack

COSTA DO SAUIPE, Brazil (Reuters) – Latin American leaders meeting in Brazil this week couldn't resist poking fun at U.S. President George W. Bush over his recent shoe-throwing incident in Iraq.

"Please, nobody take off your shoes," Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva joked to reporters at the start of a news conference on Wednesday.

An Iraqi journalist had hurled his shoes at Bush at a news conference in Baghdad on Sunday, calling him a dog.

"In this heat, if anybody takes off their shoes, we'll know right away because of the smell," quipped Lula, reaping laughter from reporters and politicians alike.

Earlier in the day, Lula threatened to throw a shoe at Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Bush's fiercest critic in Latin America, if the long-winded leftist leader spoke beyond his allotted time.

Officials from 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries burst into laughter at the summit meeting, which showcased the region's growing independence from Washington and welcomed Communist-run Cuba for the first time.

Even Cuban President Raul Castro, on his first trip abroad since taking over from his ailing brother Fidel earlier this year, was overheard taking a stab at Bush over the shoe affair.

(Reporting by Raymond Colitt, editing by Anthony Boadle)