Hamas leaders threatened revenge attacks, Israel told its civilians near Gaza to take cover and moderate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called for restraint. Egypt opened its border with Gaza to allow ambulances to drive out some of the wounded."Raw" footage from the AP, cooked footage from the Beeb. Things still not to a head in South Asia, & cooler heads may even prevail.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Friday, December 26, 2008
"If you give an asset $1,000, he'll go out and buy the shiniest junk he can find, and it will be apparent that he has suddenly come into a lot of money from someone," said Jamie Smith, a veteran of CIA covert operations in Afghanistan and now chief executive of SCG International, a private security and intelligence company. "Even if he doesn't get killed, he becomes ineffective as an informant because everyone knows where he got it."An "asset." A real fucking "human resource," huh?
"You didn't hand it out to younger guys, but it could be a silver bullet to make connections to the older ones," said one retired operative familiar with the drug's use in Afghanistan. Afghan tribal leaders often had four wives -- the maximum number allowed by the Koran -- and aging village patriarchs were easily sold on the utility of a pill that could "put them back in an authoritative position," the official said.As soon as one's little Mohammed is working again, one is "back in an authoritative position?" Our inability to transcend biology has left us w/ a wonderful world, hasn't it?
let's skip ahead to a listicle of lowlights, which is probably what you all really want anyway, since everyone runs on schadenfreude these days and is filled with impotent rage!Yeah daddy!)
Germans are organized. The French are snotty. Americans have a national character trait, too: inattention. It's now obvious that Obama exploited our hard-wired inability to read between the lines to lay the groundwork for what many of his supporters will soon view as a terrible betrayal.Damn, Ted, you think so?
Seems clear. End means end. Finito. No more. But there's an interesting phrase in Obama's promises to pull out, repeated throughout the campaign": "combat troops." "We should seize this moment to begin the phased redeployment of combat troops that I have long advocated," he wrote in his op/ed. "We can safely redeploy our combat brigades." "It's time to end this war," Obama concluded. Ending the war would mean following the political cartoonist Matt Bors' prescription: The troops would go to the airport. They would board planes. They would fly away. But Obama doesn't want to end the war. Obama will classify some units as "combat troops" and send them to Afghanistan, which he wants to expand into an even bigger war. But tens of thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of troops, will remain in Iraq, killing and getting killed.Lied to by a politician. When do the rivers start running uphill?
during what's supposed to be the cheeriest time of year, this abundance of stories from one of humanity's darkest hours?turns out not to be that the You Know Whos are trying to subvert Christmas w/ bummer fare, but
"Much of it is awards-driven," said Paul Dergarabedian, president of Media By Numbers, which tracks box-office totals. "Downer movies come out this time of year as a reflection of the fact that people are vying for Oscars."
Today's Birthdays:Actor Donald Moffat is 78. Actor Caroll Spinney (Big Bird on TV's "Sesame Street") is 75. Rhythm-and-blues singer Abdul "Duke" Fakir (The Four Tops) is 73. Record producer Phil Spector is 68. "America's Most Wanted" host John Walsh is 63. Country musician Bob Carpenter (The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) is 62. Baseball Hall of Fame catcher Carlton Fisk is 61. All-Star baseball player Chris Chambliss is 60. Humorist David Sedaris is 52. Rock musician James Kottak (The Scorpions) is 46. Country musician Brian Westrum (Sons of the Desert) is 46. Rock musician Lars Ulrich (Metallica) is 45. Actress Nadia Dajani is 43. [No real idea who she is, but at least we aren't posting picures of women young enough to be our daughters. Ed.]Rock musician J is 41. Country singer Audrey Wiggins is 41.
Thursday, December 25, 2008
It hadn't been a very good year.
Nineteen-sixty-eight saw [...] the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, riots across the world and the My Lai massacre.
But on Christmas Eve, Americans turned on their TVs to see perhaps the first good news all year: The Apollo 8 astronauts [...] as they became the first humans to orbit the moon.
Obamas to have turkey, ham for Christmas
By PHILIP ELLIOTT – 2 hours ago
HONOLULU (AP) — President-elect Barack Obama and his family planned a Christmas Day that includes opening presents in the morning and sharing a traditional turkey and ham dinner in the evening.
You can't believe a word that man says.
Coming next: Obama Goes to Church, Last Nail in His Coffin of Deception.
See? See? He's lying again! Absolute proof! Oh, & Chicago political machine, if we didn't mention it!
(CNN) — While President-elect Barack Obama will certainly be making history when he takes the oath of office on January 20, he'll also be repeating it -- by placing his hand on the same Bible Abraham Lincoln used during the inauguration of 1861.(The 1861 Lincoln Inaugural Bible against the backdrop of the Main Reading Room of the Library of Congress.)The Constitution does not require presidents to be sworn in on a Bible, though almost every chief executive since George Washington has chosen to do so.
We imagine the wailing has been going on for some time now, so we only need shooting to complete the trifecta. Bankers take cover!
Today is Thursday, Dec. 25, the 360th day of 2008. There are six days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
One Hundred and Ninety years ago, in 1818, "Silent Night," written by Franz Gruber and Father Joseph Mohr, was performed for the first time, at the Church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria.
On this date:
In 336, the first recorded celebration of Christmas on Dec. 25 took place in Rome.
In 1066, William the Conqueror was crowned king of England. [Marking the first step in a long struggle to civilization by the English. — Ed.]
In 1776, Gen. George Washington and his troops crossed the Delaware River for a surprise attack against Hessian forces at Trenton, N.J.
In 1926, Hirohito became emperor of Japan, succeeding his father, Emperor Yoshihito. (Hirohito was formally enthroned almost two years later.)
In 1941, during World War II, Japan announced the surrender of the British-Canadian garrison at Hong Kong.
In 1989, ousted Romanian President Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife, Elena, were executed following a popular uprising. [Off w/ their heads! — Ed.]
In 1991, Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev went on television to announce his resignation as the eighth and final leader of a communist superpower that had already gone out of existence.
Ten years ago: British mogul Richard Branson, American millionaire Steve Fossett and Per Lindstrand of Sweden gave up their attempt to make the first non-stop, round-the-world balloon flight seven days into their journey, ditching off Hawaii.
Five years ago: Sixteen people were killed by mudslides that swept over campgrounds in California's San Bernardino Valley. Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf survived a second assassination bid in 11 days, but 16 other people, including three suicide bombers, were killed. A plane crashed after taking off from Benin, killing at least 130 of the 161 people aboard. Europe's tiny Mars lander, the Beagle 2, was supposed to go into orbit around the Red Planet, but the craft was lost.
In 2006, James Brown, the "Godfather of Soul," died of heart failure in Atlanta at age 73.
One year ago: A tiger at the San Francisco Zoo escaped her enclosure and killed a park visitor; two brothers also were mauled, but survived. Russia's military successfully test-fired a new intercontinental ballistic missile capable of carrying multiple nuclear warheads. A ruptured gasoline pipeline exploded near Nigeria's main city of Lagos, killing at least 40 people.
Thought for Today: "My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?" — Bob Hope, American comedian (1903-2003).
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
LONDON (Reuters) – The world's troubles are rooted in a rejection of GodHeard this kind of crap anywhere before? Sure you have, all the fucking time from the expensively suited charlatans of American religiosity. This time the source is slightly different, but essentially the same. (Cheaper suit, though.)
and if Jesus Christ lived today he would stand up against bullying powers, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will tell Britons on Christmas Day.Granted, that part's a bit different. Our religious fuhrers would probably say that ol' Jeezis would be standing up against the powers that are relentlessly bullying Anglo male heterosexuals here in the United Snakes. (Oddly enough, Iran says there are no 'mos in Iran to persecute their heteros, having apparently taken care of that problem through hangings. Don't give Pastor Rick any ideas.) It may already have started, but prepare yourselves for a fit of fury from the fascists about this:
The message will be broadcast on Channel 4 Thursday evening as an alternative to the traditional Christmas television and radio address from Queen Elizabeth.That should be good for about five yrs. of the finest outrage at the Beeb as "appeasers" & "race traitors." It probably won't be too much longer until someone on the right calls for nuking Europe just to keep the whiteys from all being raped, sold into slavery or whatever other pathetically masochistic fantasies of authoritarianism the conservative mind indulges in. Pathetic exit line from Ahmadinejad:
"The prerequisite to this change is a change in goals, intentions and directions. If tyrannical goals are repackaged in an attractive and deceptive package and imposed on nations again, the people, awakened, will stand up against them."Please. "The people" (world-wide, here, there & everywhere) are in a coma. If they did awaken, it would be a medical/psychological miracle. And they still wouldn't stand up for or against squat.
Obama the Snowman Was a very scary soul With a marijuana pipe And two eyes made out of skoal [WTF?] Obama the Snowman Is a Kenyan they say He liked his white nose snow But the Americans know How he stole their country one dayPeace on Earth, Good Will to All.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
GIZZI: Who is your role model? PALIN: Susan B. Anthony. I have great respect there for the history. She was a pro-life feminist and those things that she stood for, and she was so far ahead of her time. It amazes me.Take a page from Ms. Antony's book & try to speak in complete sentences, w/ something resembling grammar. ("Pro-life feminist." Like abortion was a big deal then.)
PALIN: The biggest mistake made was that I could have called more shots on this: the opportunities that were not seized to speak to more Americans via media. I was not allowed to do very many interviews, and the interviews that I did were not necessarily those I would have chosen. But I was so thankful to have the opportunity to run with John McCain that I was not going to argue with the strategy decisions that some of his people were making regarding the media contacts. But if I would have been in charge, I would have wanted to speak to more reporters because that’s how you get your message out to the electorate.Sorry, Sarah, but you should thank the non-existent gawd whose direction you claim to seek that those people had the good sense to keep you as far from any questions as they could. A couple more "Huh?" interviews & you would have been off the McCain campaign faster than Thomas Eagleton left McGovern.
Monday, December 22, 2008
precisely why he was hired in the first place -- not for quality insight, but for the clicks that come from hosting a weekly intellectual highway accident.Lazy late-riser that we are, we were only going to grab the last paragraph from Bloody Bill's column & point it out as extra stupid & meaningless, but the reminder that Bill is strictly 'phoning it in makes his last chunk just a bit ironic.
I’ve never heard Dick Cheney quote Kipling. But I suspect he might like Kipling, and that Kipling would admire him — a man who has never gone out of his way to look too good, nor talk too wise, but who has always, in four decades of public service, sought “to fill the unforgiving minute/With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run.”Poor Bill. Can't even fill the unforgiving column before Christmas w/ sixty seconds of anything.
Let's see here. Egocentric leadership? Certainly not a problem w/ "The Church." No one could possibly get the impression that this tub of lard would just love to have a "Church" that rules the world while he's the Pope thereof, could one? This toad has such a huge ego that he can walk around decrying poverty & disease, yet obviously eats enough to feed a starving village, & hasn't the discipline to trim down a few stone. Ignorance? That's "The Church's" specialty. Promoting it, that is. We're not going near "Spiritual Lostness?" Seriously, can any one even define this alleged "spirituality?" We suspect that if it exists, it has more to do w/ spirits of alcohol than ghosts. And "lostness?" Work on your English before you start working on the rest of the world, porky.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Church is everywhere in the world. There are villages that have little else, but they do have a church. Rick Warren --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The Church is the most magnificent concept ever created. It has survived persistent abuse, horrifying persecution, and widespread neglect. Yet despite its faults (due to our sinfulness), it is still God’s chosen instrument of blessing and has been for 2,000 years.
The Church will last for eternity, and because it is God’s instrument for ministry here on Earth, it is truly the greatest force on the face of the Earth. That’s why I believe tackling the world’s biggest problems – the giants of spiritual lostness, egocentric leadership, poverty, disease, and ignorance – can only be done through the Church.
8. The Church provides for God’s conclusion. Since we believe the Bible is God’s Word, we already know the end of history. Jesus said in Matthew 24: “The good news about God’s Kingdom will be preached in all the world to every nation, and then the end will come.” It is inevitable and unavoidable.So much for the eternity of the "Church." But what is the big fucking deal? All of these freaks continually proclaim the imminent end of the fucking world (Of which we are entirely in favor, so we hate these bozos w/ an extra passion, for having led us on again & again.) so why do we have to fix the world in the first place, if it's all about to go up in flames? How these fucks will end ignorance when they can't master logic is beyond us.
Today is Monday, Dec. 22, the 357th day of 2008. There are nine days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
In 1858, opera composer Giacomo Puccini was born in Lucca, Italy.
On this date:
In 1775, Esek Hopkins was appointed the commander-in-chief of the Continental Navy.
In 1808, Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67, and Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68, also known as the "Pastoral Symphony," had their world premieres in Vienna, Austria.
In 1864, during the Civil War, Union Gen. William T. Sherman wrote a message to President Abraham Lincoln which said in part: "I beg to present you as a Christmas-gift the city of Savannah."
In 1894, French army officer Alfred Dreyfus was convicted of treason in a court-martial that triggered worldwide charges of anti-Semitism. (Dreyfus was eventually vindicated.)
In 1922, M. "Chas." Bouffant's immediate male ancestor was born.
In 1944, during the World War II Battle of the Bulge, U.S. Brigadier General Anthony C. McAuliffe rejected a German demand for surrender, writing "Nuts!" in his official reply.
In 1968, Julie Nixon married David Eisenhower in a private ceremony in New York.
In 1977, three dozen people were killed when a 250-foot-high grain elevator at the Continental Grain Company plant in Westwego, La., exploded.
In 1984, New York City resident Bernhard Goetz shot and wounded four youths on a Manhattan subway, claiming they were about to rob him.
In 1988, Brazilian environmentalist Chico Mendes was shot and killed. (A rancher, Darly Alves da Silva, was sentenced in 1990 to 19 years in jail for ordering Mendes slain.)
In 2001, Richard C. Reid, a passenger on an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami, tried to ignite explosives in his shoes, but was subdued by flight attendants and other passengers. (Reid is serving a life sentence.)
Ten years ago: A Chinese dissident (Qin Yongmin) was sentenced to prison for trying to organize an opposition party. (Qin remains in prison.)
Five years ago: A magnitude 6.5 earthquake hit California's central coast, killing two people. A federal judge ruled the Pentagon couldn't enforce mandatory anthrax vaccinations for military personnel. Colombian rebels freed four Israelis and a Briton held hostage for 101 days.
One year ago: A jury in Riverhead, N.Y., convicted John White, a black man, of second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of Daniel Cicciaro, a white teenager, during a confrontation outside White's house. (The 17-year-old was shot in the face after he showed up with two carloads of friends to confront White's son after a dispute at a party.)
Today's Birthdays: Former House Speaker Jim Wright is 86. ABC News correspondent Diane Sawyer is 63. Baseball Hall-of-Famer Steve Carlton is 64. Baseball All-Star Steve Garvey is 60. Golfer Jan Stephenson is 57.
Thought for Today: "Anger makes dull men witty, but it keeps them poor." — Attributed to Queen Elizabeth I of England (1533-1603). [Holy crap, how'd she figure us out? — Ed.]
From the World of Distraction on Today's Date:
In 1969, John Lennon and Yoko Ono met for an hour with Canada's prime minister. Earlier that day, they had met with Canada's minister of health to discuss drug abuse.
In 1973, Stephen Stills lost a paternity suit brought on by a Mill Valley, California, woman. The child had been born about two years earlier.
In 1976, singer Isaac Hayes declared bankruptcy.
In 1978, Kenney Jones became the drummer for The Who, replacing Keith Moon, who died four months earlier.
In 1979, the first of four "Concerts for the People of Kampuchea" was held in London. Performers included The Clash, Paul McCartney, The Pretenders and The Who.
In 1983, actors Parker Stevenson and Kirstie Alley got married. They have since split up.
In 1988, Morissey performed for the first time as a solo act in England.
In 1990, Pearl Jam performed for the first time together, under the name Mookie Blaylock, as the opening act for Alice In Chains in Seattle.
In 1995, actress Butterfly McQueen died of burns suffered when her house outside Augusta, Georgia, caught on fire. She was 84. She's probably best known for playing Prissy in "Gone With The Wind."
In 2000, Madonna married Guy Ritchie at a church in Scotland.
In 2002, singer-guitarist Joe Strummer of The Clash died of sudden cardiac arrest at his home in southwest England. He was 50.
Today's Show Biz Birthdays: Actress Barbara Billingsley is 93. Seen below trying to look sexy on the "Beaver" set, & some yrs. later, still w/ the pearl necklace.Actor Hector Elizondo is 72. Country singer Red Steagall is 70. Rock singer-musician Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick) is 62. Singer Robin Gibb is 59. Actress BernNadette Stanis is 55. Rapper Luther Campbell is 48. Country singer-musician Chuck Mead (BR5-49) is 48. Actor Ralph Fiennes is 46. Actress Lauralee Bell is 40. Country singer Lori McKenna is 40. Actress Dina Meyer is 40.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Aleosan, Philippines – On a muddy, shaded track between fertile farmlands, 30 men lounge in flip-flops and tattered camoflauge [sic], displaying their beaten-up M-16 and AK-47 assault rifles.
They call themselves ilaga or "rats" in a local Philippines dialect. They're vigilantes: Christian farmers who have taken up arms to protect their land and families against Muslim rebels in this troubled corner of the southern Philippines.
Ah, here's how it happened: Indigenous suck-ups to the Spanish colonizers (to the extent of adopting the imperial religion & even "Christian" names) did a bit of colonizing themselves.
The town of Aleosan lies on the faultline of communal divisions in Mindanao. The Moros – as Muslims here call themselves – regard this and surrounding areas as part of their ancestral homeland. But much of Aleosan's land has now been owned and farmed for decades by Christians from the central Philippines, who settled here after World War II with government encouragement.
To add to the fun,
Hundreds of thousands of Muslim civilians remain in makeshift camps, afraid to return to their homes. And Malaysian monitors who helped enforce a cease-fire left Nov. 30 after their mandate expired.Remind anyone of anything?
A very tiny bit of humor in all of this.
After being burned by the Supreme Court, the MILF now has little faith that the Philippines government is a reliable negotiating partner. "We can resume talks," said MILF spokesman Eid Kabalu. "But we doubt very much [that] we can achieve a satisfactory and viable outcome."
Uh, that's Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
Break up old colonial borders? Bad idea. For some.
Mr. Cabaya agrees. He says he can accept giving the Muslims more land and autonomy, but he thinks the proposed deal went too far. "I think the conflict will be worse if demands of the MILF are met, because their demand is [for] a separate state," says Cabaya. "It's being disguised as autonomy, but in essence it's a separate state."
Closely consider the phrase "Hindu Nationalists." Anything wrong w/ that?
US military deaths in Iraq war at 4,210 AP - Sat Dec 20, 8:25 PM ET As of Saturday, Dec. 20, 2008, at least 4,210 members of the U.S. military had died in the Iraq war since it began in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.Does the phrase "Coalition of the Willing" come to mind?Non-U. S. forces in Iraq: After the Dec. 31 expiration of the U.N. mandate authorizing military operations in Iraq, the only coalition troops to remain will be the U.S., Britain, Australia, El Salvador, Estonia and Romania. Britain plans to withdraw its [4,000] troops by the end of May.
Australia has 1,000 troops in Iraq, followed by Romania with 501, El Salvador with 200 and Estonia with 40.
You're saying that it's become performance art, somewhere on the formalized to ritualized scale?
Hundreds of people gathered late Saturday in the Exarchia district at the site of the December 6 shooting of 15-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos for a protest organised by youths occupying Athens Polytechnic.
Protesters hurled firebombs at police who responded with tear gas. A group threw stones and Molotov cocktails at police and set fire to garbage bins, acts often seen in Exarchia since the boy's killing.
Police also clashed with protesters after a separate demonstration against racism that was attended by around 200 people in Syntagma Square.
"Migrants are killed, schoolchildren are killed," said banners carried by the protesters who marched to the Greek parliament.
Protesters threw garbage at police who ringed a Christmas tree on the main square. The tree was brought in last week after the original was torched at the height of unrest following the schoolboy's death.
Later, a group threw a petrol bomb at a building housing a banking services company, although there was only minor damage and the fire was quickly brought under control.
In Nea Philadelfia, a western suburb of Athens, demonstrators threw Molotov cocktails at the police academy and torched six police vehicles parked nearby, without causing any casualties, police said.
Another group of youths set fire to garbage cans in the northern suburb of Aghia Paraskevi.
In the northern city of Thessaloniki, youths occupied a hall being used for a film festival while others pelted the city mayor with pastries, police said.
Masked youths Friday attacked the French cultural institute in Athens after about 1,000 students and communist activists staged a march to condemn a second shooting on Wednesday in which the son of a teacher's union official was slightly wounded.
Protesters demanding justice over Grigoropoulos's death continue to occupy hundreds of schools and many universities across Greece.
The Athens Polytechnic, site of a 1973 student uprising that hastened the fall of military dictatorship in Greece, is among the occupied campuses.
And Europe is becoming a true community.
Tear it up, righteous youth from the cradle of democracy! (It needed a cradle for some time after the ancient Greeks birthed it, as it was a weak & fitful concept.) Squash the fascist insect!! At least keep pelting police w/ garbage & mayors w/ pastries. And don't let that new X-mess tree go unburned.
German police on Saturday arrested 10 people and suffered four injuries in fighting with demonstrators staging a rally in Hamburg in support of the Greek protests, officials said.
About 1,300 police were mobilised to monitor the approximately 1,000 demonstrators who marched to the Greek consulate in the northern port city.
Today is Sunday, Dec. 21, the 356th day of 2008. There are 10 days left in the year. Winter will arrive at 7:04 a.m. Eastern time. The Jewish Festival of Lights, Hanukkah, begins at sunset.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec. 21, 1620, Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower went ashore for the first time at present-day Plymouth, Mass.
On this date:
In 1804, British statesman Benjamin Disraeli was born in London.
In 1940, author F. Scott Fitzgerald died in Hollywood, Calif., at age 44.
In 1945, Gen. George S. Patton died in Heidelberg, Germany, of injuries from a car accident.
Sixty years ago, in 1948, the state of Eire, or Ireland, passed an act declaring itself a republic.
Fifty years ago, in 1958, Charles de Gaulle was elected to a seven-year term as the first president of the Fifth Republic of France.
Forty years ago, in 1968, Apollo 8 was launched on a mission to orbit the moon.
In 1971, the U.N. Security Council chose Kurt Waldheim to succeed U Thant as Secretary-General.
In 1976, the Liberian-registered tanker Argo Merchant broke apart near Nantucket Island, off Massachusetts, almost a week after running aground, spilling 7 1/2 million gallons of oil into the North Atlantic.
Twenty years ago, in 1988, 270 people were killed when a terrorist bomb exploded aboard a Pam Am Boeing 747 over Lockerbie, Scotland, sending wreckage crashing to the ground.
Ten years ago: Israel's parliament voted overwhelmingly for early elections, signaling the demise of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ailing hard-line government. A Chinese court sentenced two dissidents (Xu Wenli, Wang Youcai) to long prison terms for trying to organize an opposition party. (Xu was released in December 2002; Wang, in March 2004.)
Five years ago: The government raised the national threat level to orange, indicating a high risk of terrorist attack. (It was lowered back to yellow on Jan. 9, 2004.) More than 150 people were killed in mudslides in the Philippines. Soviet diplomat Oleg Troyanovsky died at age 84.
One year ago: A suicide attacker detonated a bomb at a mosque outside the home of Pakistan's former interior minister, killing at least 50 people.
Today's Birthdays: Country singer Freddie Hart is 82. Actor Ed Nelson is 80. Talk show host Phil Donahue is 73. Movie director John Avildsen is 73. Actress Jane Fonda is 71. [Here she is in Cleveland, Oh., a bit over 38 yrs. ago, resisting. 5' 8" & 126#. Mm. — Sexist Pig Editor.]Singer Carla Thomas is 66. Musician Albert Lee is 65. Conductor Michael Tilson Thomas is 64. Actor Samuel L. Jackson is 60. Movie producer Jeffrey Katzenberg is 58. Singer Betty Wright is 55. Tennis Hall-of-Famer Chris Evert is 54. Actress Jane Kaczmarek is 53. Country singer Lee Roy Parnell is 52. Entertainer Jim Rose is 52. Actor-comedian Ray Romano is 51. Country singer Christy Forester (The Forester Sisters) is 46. Rock musician Murph (The Lemonheads; Dinosaur Jr.) is 44. Actor-comedian Andy Dick is 43. Rock musician Gabrielle Glaser is 43. Actor Kiefer Sutherland is 42. Actress Karri Turner is 42. Actress Khrystyne Haje is 40. Actress Julie Delpy is 39. Singer-musician Brett Scallions is 37.
Thought for Today: "Many human beings say that they enjoy the winter, but what they really enjoy is feeling proof against it." — Richard Adams, English author.
On December 21st, 1933, five-year-old Shirley Temple signed a movie contract with Fox. Her age was later changed to make her appear a year younger.
In 1937, Disney released the movie "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," the first full-length animated film in Technicolor.
In 1964, the book "Ode to a High-Flying Bird" by Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts was published. It was a tribute to jazz great Charlie Parker.
In 1968, Janis Joplin made her first appearance after leaving Big Brother and the Holding Company. She performed in Memphis at the second annual "Yuletide Thing" event sponsored by Stax-Volt Records. Also in 1968, Crosby, Stills and Nash performed together for the first time.
In 1970, Elvis Presley paid a visit to President Nixon at the White House.
In 1979, Chicago, The Eagles and Linda Ronstadt played the first of two concerts to raise campaign money for California governor Jerry Brown, Ronstadt's then-boyfriend.
In 1991, actress Jane Fonda married broadcasting executive Ted Turner on his ranch in Florida. It was her 54th birthday. They've since split up.
In 1996, singer Tony Bennett was rushed to a hospital in Washington after his hernia erupted while visiting the White House for a holiday dinner. He had to have emergency surgery but recovered without problems. Also in 1996, singer Lionel Richie married former dancer and fashion designer Diane Alexander in New York.
In 2005, Elton John and his longtime partner, David Furnish, held a civil union ceremony in Windsor, England, the first day that same-sex partnerships became legal in Britain. Also in 2005, singer Howie Day was arrested for rowdy behavior on a flight from Dallas to Boston. He was sentenced to probation and rehab and was ordered to write letters of apology to the crew and passengers. [Who the fuck is Howie Day? — Ed.]