Monday, December 7, 2009

Melting ...

Rain has struck the "Southland;" the only thing more cliched than the hysteria of STORMWATCH 2009!1! on the local news is dilrods like us bitching about it.

We for one welcome our new hydro-lords, their below 60 temps., heavy rain & wind.

Heaven On Earth

The above was somehow an object of mockery where we found it. We had to rescue it & present it totally w/o irony. Or w/ some sort of double or meta-irony. Big Velveeta© fans here at Just Another Blog™, though we've never done much w/ its sauce form. This gives us some ideas for dolphintuna melts. The grating of cheese can be a real chore. (As can grating that damn tuna.)

7 December: Infamy; Instant Replay; Airline Total: 93, Gunman Total: 49 Dead, Six Wounded; War, Fire, Executions, Death

Today is Monday, December 7th, the 341st day of 2009. There are 24 days left in the year. The UPI.
Today's Highlight in History:
On December 7th, 1941, Japanese forces attacked American and British territories and possessions in the Pacific, including the home base of the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, drawing the United States into World War II. More than 2,300 Americans were killed. [If you give a flying fuck at a rolling doughnut, see this or this item concerning Just Another Blog™'s tenuous personal connection to the infamous attack. — Ed.]

On this date:
In 1787, Delaware became the first state to ratify the US Constitution. [Frist!! — Ed.]
In 1796, electors chose John Adams to be the second president of the United States. [Second!! — Ed.]
In 1836, Martin Van Buren was elected the eighth president of the United States.
In 1842, the New York Philharmonic gave its first concert.
In 1907, the first Christmas Seals to help the fight against tuberculosis were sold, in Wilmington, Delaware. (Some sources say December 9th.)
One hundred years ago, in 1909, in his State of the Union address, President William Howard Taft defended the decision to base US naval operations in the Pacific at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii, instead of in the Philippines. Chemist Leo H. Baekeland received a US patent for Bakelite, the first totally synthetic plastic.
In 1917, the U.S. declared war on Austria-Hungary in World War I.
In 1925, five-time Olympic gold medalist and future movie Tarzan Johnny Weissmuller set a world record in 150-yard free-style swimming.
In 1931, U.S. President Herbert Hoover refused to see a group of "hunger marchers" at the White House.
In 1946, fire broke out at the Winecoff Hotel in Atlanta; the blaze killed 119 people, including hotel founder W. Frank Winecoff.
In 1963, videotaped instant replay was used for the first time in a live sports telecast as CBS re-showed a touchdown run during the Army-Navy football game.
In 1972, America's last moon mission to date was launched as Apollo 17 blasted off from Cape Canaveral.
In 1975, Indonesia invaded East Timor, leading to a 25-year occupation.
In 1982, convicted murderer Charlie Brooks, Jr. became the first U.S. prisoner to be executed by injection, at the prison in Huntsville, Texas.
In 1983, in Madrid, Spain, an Aviaco DC-9 collided on a runway with an Iberia Air Lines Boeing 727 that was accelerating for takeoff, killing all 42 people aboard the DC-9 and 51 aboard the Iberia jet.
In 1985, retired Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart died at age 70.
In 1986, the speaker of Iran's parliament said his country would help free more U.S. hostages in Lebanon in exchange for more U.S. arms.
In 1987, 43 people were killed after a gunman aboard a Pacific Southwest Airlines jetliner in California apparently opened fire on a fellow passenger, the two pilots and himself, causing the plane to crash. [The gunman was a disgruntled PSA employee, by the way. — Ed.] Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev set foot on American soil for the first time, arriving for a Washington summit with President Reagan.
In 1988, an earthquake in the Soviet Union devastated northern Armenia; an estimated 25,000 people died.
In 1991, on the 50th anniversary of Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor, U.S. President George H.W. Bush called for an end to recriminations and sought the healing of old wounds.
In 1993, a gunman opened fire on a Long Island Rail Road commuter train, killing six people and wounding 17. Colin Ferguson was later sentenced to a minimum of 200 years in prison. U. S. Energy Secretary Hazel O'Leary revealed the United States had conducted 204 underground nuclear tests from 1963-90 without informing the public. Also in 1993, astronauts aboard the space shuttle Endeavor fixed the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope.
In 1995, a 746-pound probe from the Galileo spacecraft hurtled into Jupiter's atmosphere, sending back data to the mothership before it was destroyed.

In 1997, Republicans threatened Attorney General Janet Reno with contempt of Congress over her decision to forgo an independent counsel's investigation of White House campaign fund raising.
In 1999, NASA scientists all but gave up hope of contacting the Mars Polar Lander, last heard from four days earlier as it began its descent toward the Red Planet.
In 2001, Taliban forces abandoned their last bastion in Afghanistan, fleeing the southern city of Kandahar.
In 2002, Iraq handed over its long-awaited arms declaration to the United Nations, denying it had weapons of mass destruction. President Saddam Hussein apologized to Kuwait for his 1990 invasion. Shuttle Endeavour returned to Earth, bringing an astronaut and pair of cosmonauts home from a 6-month space station voyage. Bombs tore through four movie theaters in Bangladesh, killing 19. Miss Turkey Azra Akin won the Miss World contest in London, bringing to a close an international pageant that had incited deadly rioting in Nigeria, the original site of the event.
In 2004, Hamid Karzai was sworn in as Afghanistan's first popularly elected president. The House of Representatives passed an intelligence network overhaul measure, 336-75. Amway co-founder Jay Van Andel died in Ada, Mich. at age 80.
In 2006, President Bush gave a chilly response to the Iraq Study Group's proposals for reshaping his policy, objecting to talks with Iran and Syria, refusing to endorse a major troop withdrawal and vowing no retreat from embattled U.S. goals in the Mideast. The U.S. military transferred the first group of Guantanamo Bay detainees to a new maximum-security prison on the naval base. Jeane J. Kirkpatrick, the first woman U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, died in Bethesda, Maryland, at age 80.
In 2007, baseball home run king Barry Bonds pleaded not guilty in San Francisco to charges he'd lied to federal investigators about using performance-enhancing drugs.
In 2008, President-elect Barack Obama introduced retired Gen. Eric Shinseki as his choice to head the Veterans Affairs Department.
Today's Birthdays December 7: Actor Eli Wallach is 94. Linguist and political philosopher Noam Chomsky is 81. Bluegrass singer Bobby Osborne is 78. Actress Ellen Burstyn is 77. Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) is 72. Broadcast journalist Carole Simpson is 69. Baseball Hall of Famer Johnny Bench is 62. Country singer Gary Morris is 61. Singer-songwriter Tom Waits is 60. Sen. Susan M. Collins (R-Maine) is 57. Basketball Hall of Famer Larry Bird is 53. Actress Priscilla Barnes is 52. Former "Tonight Show" announcer Edd Hall is 51. Rock musician Tim Butler (The Psychedelic Furs) is 51. Actor Jeffrey Wright is 44. Actor C. Thomas Howell is 43. NFL player Terrell Owens is 36. Pop singer Nicole Appleton (All Saints) is 34. Country singer Sunny Sweeney is 33. Actress Shiri Appleby is 31. Pop-rock singer Sara Bareilles is 30.
Birthdays of the Gravebound: Giovanni Bernini, Baroque sculptor/architect (1598); Richard Warren Sears, merchant (1863); Willa Cather, novelist (1873); composer Rudolf Friml ("Indian Love Call") (1879); Ted Knight, actor (1923); Harry Chapin, songwriter, singer (1942); Reginald Lewis, business leader (1942).
This Date in Showbiz History:
In 1962, bassist Bill Wyman auditioned for the Rolling Stones. He played his first gig with the band the following week. [The story is that he had the biggest cabinet of anyone who audtioned. Size does matter. — Ed.]
In 1964, singer Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys had a nervous breakdown on a flight between Houston and Los Angeles. It eventually led to his decision to stop touring with the Beach Boys.
In 1967, The Beatles opened their Apple Boutique in London to the public. John Lennon and George Harrison had held a private opening party two days before. [Beatles & Stones items today! — Ed.] Also in 1967, Otis Redding recorded "Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay."
In 1968, singer Eric Burdon announced The Animals would break up later in the month.
Forty years ago, in 1969, "Frosty the Snowman" first aired on CBS.

In 1990, singer Dee Clark was found dead in Smyrna, Georgia, of a heart attack. Clark was 52. He was known for the hit "Raindrops." Also in 1990, the movie "Edward Scissorhands" opened nationwide.
In 1997, singer Bob Dylan, actor Charlton Heston, actress Lauren Bacall, opera singer Jessye Norman and ballet master Edward Villella shared the 20th annual Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, DC.
In 2002, singer Marc Anthony renewed his wedding vows with his wife, Dayanara Torres, in San Juan, Puerto Rico. They had announced their break-up five months earlier but had never filed for legal separation. They later divorced.
In 2004, singer Jerry Scoggins, who performed "The Ballad of Jed Clampett," the theme song to "The Beverly Hillbillies," died at age 93.
In 2008, actress-singer Barbra Streisand, actor Morgan Freeman, country singer George Jones, dancer and choreographer Twyla Tharp and musicians Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey of The Who received Kennedy Center Honors.
Thought for Today: "What man strives to preserve, in preserving himself, is something which he has never been at any particular moment." — George Santayana, Spanish-American philosopher (1863-1952).

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Barrel-Bottom Scrapings

Obligatory daily non-historical post.

6 December: American Satellite: Not; Jeff Davis Dies; Bog-Monkeys Freed; Ford Is V-P; Canuck School Shooting: 14 Women & Shooter Die; O. C. Bankrupt; Chavez Elected; Army Goes 0-13 in Football: Recent War Record Similar; Altamont

Today is Sunday, December 6th, the 340th day of 2009. There are 25 days left in the year. UPI, also.Today's Highlight in History: On December 6th, 1957, America's first attempt at putting a satellite into orbit failed as Vanguard TV3 rose only about four feet off a Cape Canaveral launch pad before crashing back down and exploding.
On this date:
In 1790, Congress moved to Philadelphia from New York.
In 1811, the first in a series of earthquakes rocked the Midwest in and around New Madrid, Mo.
In 1865, the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, abolishing slavery in the United States.
In 1884, Army engineers completed construction of the Washington Monument by setting an aluminum capstone atop the obelisk.
In 1889, Jefferson Davis, the first and only president of the Confederate States of America, died in New Orleans.
In 1907, the worst mining disaster in US history occurred as 362 men and boys died in a coal mine explosion in Monongah, West Virginia.
In 1917, some 2,000 people died when an explosives-laden French cargo ship collided with a Norwegian vessel at the harbor in Halifax, Nova Scotia, setting off a blast that devastated the city.
In 1921, British and Irish representatives signed a treaty in London providing for creation of an Irish Free State a year later on the same date.
In 1922, the Irish Free State came into being under terms of the Anglo-Irish Treaty.
In 1923, a presidential address was broadcast on the radio for the first time when Calvin Coolidge spoke before Congress.
In 1926, French impressionist painter Claude Monet died at age 86.
In 1933, Americans crowded into liquor stores, bars and cafes to buy their first legal alcoholic beverages in 13 years, following repeal of Prohibition.
In 1941, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt sent a message to Japanese Emperor Hirohito expressing hope that gathering war clouds would be dispelled. Japan attacked Pearl Harbor the next day.
In 1947, Everglades National Park in Florida was dedicated by President Truman.
In 1957, AFL-CIO members voted to expel the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. (The Teamsters were readmitted in 1987, but disaffiliated themselves from the AFL-CIO in 2005.)
In 1973, House minority leader Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as vice president, succeeding Spiro T. Agnew, who had resigned after pleading no contest to income tax evasion.
In 1982, 11 soldiers and 6 civilians were killed when an Irish National Liberation Army bomb exploded at a pub in Ballykelly, Northern Ireland.
In 1989, 14 women were shot to death at at the University of Montreal's school of engineering by a man who then took his own life.
In 1992, thousands of Hindu extremists destroyed a mosque in India, setting off two months of Hindu-Muslim rioting that claimed at least 2,000 lives.
In 1994, Orange County, Calif., filed for bankruptcy protection due to investment losses of about $2 billion.
In 1997, at least 69 people were killed when a Russian military cargo plane crashed in the Siberian city of Irkutsk seconds after takeoff.
In 1998, Hugo Chavez, who had staged a bloody coup attempt against the Venezuelan government six years earlier, was elected president.

In 1999, the Supreme Court, reconsidering its landmark Miranda ruling, agreed to decide whether police were still required to warn criminal suspects that they had a "right to remain silent." (The justices upheld that right the following June.) SabreTech, an aircraft maintenance company, was convicted of mishandling the oxygen canisters blamed for the cargo hold fire that caused the 1996 ValuJet crash in the Florida Everglades that killed 110 people. (Eight of the nine counts were later thrown out on appeal.)
In 2002, President Bush pushed Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill and economic adviser Larry Lindsey from their jobs in a Cabinet shakeup. Ten Palestinians, including two U.N. employees, were killed when Israeli forces poured into a Gaza Strip refugee camp, searching for a fugitive militant. Anti-war activist Philip Berrigan died in Baltimore at age 79.
In 2003, Army became the first team to finish 0-13 in major college football history after a 34-6 loss to Navy. [Ha ha. Navy rules. — Ed.]
In 2004, Al-Qaida struck the U. S. Consulate in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, with explosives and machine guns, killing nine people. Ohio certified President George W. Bush's 119,000-vote victory over Democrat John Kerry, even as the Kerry campaign and third-party candidates prepared to demand a statewide recount. A dozen expensive homes under construction in Indian Head, Md., were deliberately burned down. (Five men either pleaded guilty or were convicted in the case; prosecutors had cited a variety of motives, including anger by some of the white perpetrators that most of the new homeowners were black.)
In 2006, the bipartisan Iraq Study Group concluded that President Bush's war policies had failed in almost every regard, and said the situation in Iraq was "grave and deteriorating." The Senate voted to confirm Robert Gates as defense secretary. Searchers found the body of San Francisco resident James Kim in the Oregon mountains, two days after his wife and two daughters were rescued from their car (Kim had set out on foot to find help for his family).
In 2008, President-elect Barack Obama said in a Saturday radio and Internet address that he'd asked his economic team for a recovery plan that would save or create more than 2 million jobs. Indicted Democratic US Rep. William Jefferson was ousted from his New Orleans area district in a special election won by Republican attorney Anh "Joseph" Cao, who became the first Vietnamese-American in Congress. A Greek youth, 15-year-old Alexandros Grigoropoulos, was shot to death during a confrontation with police in Athens, sparking two weeks of riots. Heiress Martha "Sunny" von Bulow, who'd spent the last 28 years of her life in a coma, died in New York City at age 76.
Today's Birthdays December 6: Jazz musician Dave Brubeck is 89. Pro Football Hall of Famer Andy Robustelli is 84. Patsy Takemoto Mink, first Asian-American Congresswoman, 82. Comedy performer David Ossman is 73. Actor Patrick Bauchau is 71. Country singer Helen Cornelius is 68. Actor James Naughton is 64. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is 64. Rhythm-and-blues singer Frankie Beverly (Maze) is 63. Former Sen. Don Nickles (R-Okla.) is 61. Actress JoBeth Williams is 61. Actor Tom Hulce is 56. Actor Kin Shriner is 56. Actor Wil Shriner is 56. Actor Miles Chapin is 55. Rock musician Rick Buckler (The Jam) is 54. Comedian Steven Wright is 54. Country singer Bill Lloyd is 54. Singer Tish Hinojosa is 54. Rock musician Peter Buck (R.E.M.) is 53. Rock musician David Lovering (Pixies) is 48. Actress Janine Turner is 47. Rock musician Ben Watt (Everything But The Girl) is 47. Writer-director Judd Apatow is 42. Rock musician Ulf "Buddha" Ekberg (Ace of Base) is 39. Writer-director Craig Brewer is 38. Actress Colleen Haskell is 33. Actress Lindsay Price is 33.
(Just a Few of the Billions of) Dead People Born on This Date: Jean Eugene Robert Houdin, conjurer and magician (1805). Joyce Kilmer, poet (1886). Ira Gershwin, lyricist (1896). Gunnar Myrdal, economist (1898). Agnes Moorehead, actress (1906). Eleanor Holm, swimmer, won gold medal in 100m backstroke at 1932 Olympics; thrown off '36 U.S. team for drinking champagne in public and shooting craps on boat to Germany (1913).
From the World of Show Biz:
Seventy years ago, in 1939, the Cole Porter musical comedy "Du Barry Was a Lady" opened on Broadway.
Forty years ago, in 1969, four people died at a free Rolling Stones concert at the Altamont Speedway in Livermore, California.

One of the victims was stabbed by a Hell's Angel.In 1970, on the anniversary of the Altamont Speedway concert, the documentary "Gimme Shelter" premiered in New York. It was about the Rolling Stones' 1969 tour.In 1988, singer Roy Orbison died of a heart attack near Nashville, Tennessee. He was 52.
In 2003, actress Winona Ryder was sentenced to community service as part of a probationary term for stealing more than $5,500 worth of merchandise from a Saks Fifth Avenue store in Beverly Hills, California.
In 2002, musician Elvis Costello married jazz singer Diana Krall.
In 2008, Hootie and the Blowfish drummer Jim "Soni" Sonefeld married Laura Bryan, the ex-wife of Hootie guitarist Mark Bryan.
Thought for Today: "Marriage is a lottery in which men stake their liberty and women their happiness." — Madame Virginie de Rieux, 16th-century French writer.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Pointless Existence: Sweet, Yet Dull

Managed to rouse ourself around 1430, watched the Spielberg/Cruise War of the Worlds, currently watching the next to last* regular-season college game, live from Hawai'i.

Planned for later: More telebison. Sleep.

*Last: Army-Navy, next Sat.

5 December: END PROHIB!; Mozart Dies; Custer's First Stand; James K. Polk Triggers Gold Rush; Mary Celeste Found Empty; Bermuda Triangle Event; Montgomery Boycott Declared; AFofL, CIO Unite; Speck Misses 50 By "That Much"; Greenspan Continues To Have Head Up Ass, & Likes It; This Wk.'s Mall Shooter Kills 8, + Self

Today is Saturday, Dec. 5, the 339th day of 2009. There are 26 days left in the year. UPI version.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec. 5, 1933, national Prohibition came to an end as Utah became the 36th state to ratify the 21st Amendment to the Constitution, repealing the 18th Amendment.
Audio LinkRev. Billy Sunday condemns repeal of prohibition
On this date:
In 1776, the first scholastic fraternity in America, Phi Beta Kappa, was organized at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va.
In 1782, the eighth president of the United States, Martin Van Buren, was born in Kinderhook, N.Y., the first chief executive to be born after American independence.
In 1791, composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart died in Vienna, Austria, at age 35.
In 1792, George Washington was re-elected president; John Adams was re-elected vice president.
In 1831, former President John Quincy Adams took his seat as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
In 1848, President James K. Polk triggered the Gold Rush of '49 by confirming that gold had been discovered in California.
In 1872, having left New York on Nov. 5, the brigantine Mary Celeste was found adrift off Portugal with no one aboard.
In 1932, German physicist Albert Einstein was granted a visa, making it possible for him to travel to the United States.
In 1945, five U.S. Navy Avenger torpedo-bombers disappeared on a routine flight in the area of the Atlantic known as the Bermuda Triangle.
In 1955, in one of the early civil rights actions in the South, the African-American commonity declared a boycott of city buses in Montgomery, Ala., demanding seating on an equal basis with white people. The boycott, prompted by the arrest of Rosa Parks, a black woman who refused to give up her bus seat to a white man, lasted until Dec. 20, 1956, when a U.S. Supreme Court ruling integrated the city's public transit system. The American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations merged to form the AFL-CIO under its first president, George Meany.
Thirty years ago, in 1979, feminist Sonia Johnson was formally excommunicated by the Mormon Church because of her outspoken support for the proposed Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution.
In 1990, the U.S. State Department said Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had accepted the idea of direct high-level U.S.-Iraqi talks to resolve the Gulf crisis.
In 1991, British media magnate Robert Maxwell disappeared while on his yacht off the Canary Islands. Richard Speck, who'd murdered eight student nurses in Chicago in 1966, died in prison a day short of his 50th birthday.
In 1994, Republicans chose Newt Gingrich to be the first GOP speaker of the House in four decades.
In 1996, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan questioned whether the stock market was overvalued, saying in a speech in Washington, "How do we know when irrational exuberance has unduly inflated asset values?"
In 1997, the space shuttle Columbia returned from a 16-day mission that had been marred by the bungled release of a satellite. The World Trade Organization rejected American claims that the Fuji film company had conspired with the Japanese government to keep Eastman Kodak products out of Japan.
In 1999, AFL-CIO chief John Sweeney welcomed the collapse of World Trade Organization talks in Seattle, asserting that "No deal is better than a bad deal." Cuban President Fidel Castro demanded that the United States return 5-year-old Elian Gonzalez, who had been rescued at sea, to his father in Cuba within 72 hours.
In 2002, Senate Republican leader Trent Lott praised Strom Thurmond's pro-segregation 1948 presidential campaign. The ensuing uproar led to Lott's resignation from the Senate leadership. TAKE TWO: Strom Thurmond, the oldest and longest-serving senator in history, celebrated his 100th birthday on Capitol Hill. (It was at this gathering that Senate Republican leader Trent Lott, in toasting Thurmond, seemed to express nostalgia for Thurmond's segregationist past; the resulting firestorm prompted Lott to resign his leadership position.) UPI TAKE: U. S. Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., celebrated his 100th birthday on Capitol Hill. Thurmond, who retired the following year, had served the Senate since 1954, making him both the longest-serving and oldest member of Congress. He died June 27, 2003. [That's it from the UPI. — Ed.] In Kansas City, Missouri, a pharmacist who'd diluted chemotherapy drugs given to thousands of cancer patients was sentenced to 30 years in prison. General Ne Win, former dictator of Myanmar, also called Burma, died in Yangon at age 91. ABC executive Roone Arledge died in New York at age 71.
In 2004, gunmen ambushed a bus carrying unarmed Iraqis to work at a U.S. ammo dump near Tikrit, killing 17. Egypt freed an Israeli Arab man convicted of spying in exchange for Israel's release of six Egyptian students who were suspected of trying to kidnap Israeli soldiers. Carlos Moya beat Andy Roddick 6-2, 7-6 (1), 7-6 (5) to clinch Spain's second Davis Cup title. The U.S. Congress said it was considering a proposal to withhold millions of dollars in foreign aid unless countries agree to shield Americans from prosecution of war crimes.
In 2006, Fiji's prime minister was placed under house arrest as the Pacific island nation's military announced it had taken control of the government. New York became the first city in the nation to ban artery-clogging trans fats at restaurants.
In 2007, a teenage gunman went on a shooting rampage at the Westroads Mall in Omaha, Neb., killing six store employees and two customers; Robert A. Hawkins, 19, then took his own life.
In 2008, the Labor Department reported that an alarming half-million jobs had vanished in Nov. 2008 as unemployment hit a 15-year high of 6.7 percent. Hundreds of workers laid off on short notice from the Republic Windows and Doors factory in Chicago began a six-day sit-in. (Republic ultimately agreed to the workers' demands for severance and accrued vacation pay; the factory was later sold to a California company, Serious Materials.) A judge in Las Vegas sentenced O.J. Simpson to 33 years in prison (with eligibility for parole after nine) for an armed robbery at a hotel room. Alexy II, the Russian Orthodox patriarch who'd presided over a vast post-Soviet revival of the faith, died at his residence outside Moscow at age 79.
Today's Birthdays: Singer Little Richard is 77. Author Joan Didion is 75. Author Calvin Trillin is 74. Musician J.J. Cale is 71. Actor Jeroen Krabbe is 65. Opera singer Jose Carreras is 63. Pop singer Jim Messina is 62. College Football Hall of Famer Jim Plunkett is 62. World Golf Hall of Famer Lanny Wadkins is 60. Actress Morgan Brittany is 58. Actor Brian Backer is 53. Pro Football Hall of Famer Art Monk is 52. Country singer Ty England is 46. Rock singer-musician John Rzeznik (The Goo Goo Dolls) is 44. Country singer Gary Allan is 42. Comedian-actress Margaret Cho is 41. Writer-director Morgan J. Freeman is 40. Actress Alex Kapp Horner is 40.
Those Who Will Not Be Celebrating: Christina Rossetti, poet (1830); George Armstrong Custer, American military officer (1839) [One of the all-time American assholes, who got just what he deserved. — Ed.]; Bill Pickett, cowboy, rodeo star (1870); film director Fritz Lang (1890); Strom Thurmond, U.S. senator (1902); Otto Preminger, director, producer (1906).
Entertainment Events:
In 1901, movie producer Walt Disney was born in Chicago.
In 1968, the Rolling Stones album "Beggar's Banquet" was released. Also in 1968, Graham Nash quit The Hollies because the band wanted to do an album of Bob Dylan songs.
In 1975, the self-titled album "Fleetwood Mac" was certified gold in the US. It was the first one with Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks.
In 1992, Ice Cube became the first hard-core rapper to have an album make its debut at number one on the "Billboard" album chart, with "The Predator."
In 1996, country singer Montana Slim died at his home in Scottsdale, Arizona, two months after being diagnosed with a stomach tumor. He was 91.
In 2003, actress Gwyneth Paltrow married Coldplay singer Chris Martin in Santa Barbara County, California. [Does anyone care? — Ed.]
In 2005, actress Valerie Bertinelli filed for divorce from Van Halen guitarist Eddie Van Halen. [Really, does anyone care? — Ed.]
In 2008, death claimed actresses Nina Foch at age 84 and Beverly Garland at age 82.
Thought for Today: "All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." — Walt Disney (born this date in 1901, died 1966). [What a despicable thing to say, especially to a child. Lucky for him he's dead already. — Ed.]

Friday, December 4, 2009

Friday Night In Hell

Not noticing the listing for BIG WIFE CLUB until the potentially fascinating program had come and gone was not an auspicious omen for the remainder of the weekend.

Two (More) Senators To Be Shot At Dawn

Max Baucus:
A Department of Justice official who is in a relationship with Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) withdrew as a finalist for Montana U.S. Attorney to live with the senator in Washington, a Baucus spokesperson confirmed to Main Justice today.

Melodee Hanes, the Montana senator's former state director, withdrew earlier this year after Baucus sent her name and two others to the White House as his recommendations for the state's top federal prosecuting job.

Read the whole story: Roll Call
Also, Orrin Hatch opens his yap:
This will become one more example of the arrogance of power being exerted since the Democrats secured a 60-vote majority in the United States Senate and took over the House and the White House. I dream some day of having the Republicans have 60 votes. I’ll tell you one thing, I think we would finally have the total responsibility to get this country under control and I believe we would. But we never come close to that. There are essentially no checks and balances found in Washington today just an arrogance of power with one party ramming through unpopular and devastating proposals on after the other.
We recall that some societies have used stranglers for executions. An excellent idea in these two cases.

Also: The incompetents at PuffHo (Doubtless too busy looking at "NSFW" shots of celebrity breasts to bother editing.) link to Main Justice where they typed "Roll Call." So here's the RC link. (We've just about had it w/ cleaning up everybody else's shit after them. You hear us?)

Observer Effect

As if strapping this around a cat's neck isn't going to have an effect on its behavior, as excerpted here.

Short Robe, Short Bus, Short Life For A Nation Of Sheep

TBogg like to had an aneurysm Tuesday upon seeing one of Sarah's frocks.

Others are on Thread Watch, & have found another doozy.
All well & good. We've sported some amusing threads ourself. (In the early '70s. Some of us eventually wise up.) But this creeps us out, if that's a strong enough phrase.
Ben Smith of Politico has written an article examining how central Trig has become to Sarah Palin's political popularity:
In the months since she returned to the public spotlight, Sarah Palin’s continually evolving political identity has undergone a subtle change as her public persona centers increasingly on her disabled son, Trig.
. . .
But the most striking evidence of her son’s impact has been Palin’s book tour promoting her memoir, “Going Rogue.” As she descends from her tour bus or private jet to meet her fans, 19-month-old Trig has been a conspicuous presence — and generated a huge response. “There’s a lot of people who come through the line to see Trig instead of to see her,” says Jason Recher, a campaign aide who remained close to Palin and is now accompanying her on her book tour.
. . .
For Palin, Trig has proved both a powerful political rallying point and a kind of shield.
We'll just keep our fingers off the keys & our figurative mouth shut about the concept of a retarded Jesus (Spontaneously fathered by the Holy Ghost of Elvis? Certainly the same heartland demographic.) being worshiped by the anti-intellects & "common sensers." Nor will we even once mention the FLDS women in polygamous marriages who hope their next child will have Down's syndrome (easier to handle among the quiverful, & welfare money: Win-win!).

And we wouldn't type word one about how nations insufferably proud of their stupidity & deliberate in their ignorance are not long for this world. Not us, you fucking imbecilic sheep.


Actuality. From.

Hey, You Aren't Supposed To Type "Retarded" Any More!

Why Is Buttoning Up Your Shirt All the Way Hollywood's Shorthand for Retarded?

(Uh, speaking of "retarded," where does the "Up" in that title belong, "special" person?)

Scanning a little more, we were confronted w/ an A to the Q, despite our clever cynicism in the link.
 One reason developmentally and physically disabled people dress differently from their peers is that their mothers play a big role in their wardrobe choices. Parents are more resistant to changing styles, and they're more likely to stick to stores like JCPenney rather than venturing into Hot Topic
Parenting: The Ur-Fascism.

Tastes Like Chicken: The Military Mind At Work

Were we the sort of lame-ass parasite who has an "Amazon Wish List" (As we love to type: "Wish in one hand, crap in the other, & see which piles up faster!") posted on his/her web log, this book
peculiar as it may seem, Paglen has shown that a remarkable amount of information can be gleaned from Black Ops patches and has written a book on the subject.
might well be on it.
Spotted by forward observers at Danger Room:
The Desert Prowler’s patches include the phrases “alone and unafraid” and “alone and on the prowl” as well as the figure of a wraith taken from an album cover by Insane Clown Posse. The wraith is said to represent the Grim Reaper…
(Jeeziz, Juggalos w/ R/C bombs & missiles!)

The Future Is Now; Shop For It!

The NOstalgia Party builds a bridge to the 20th century.

Pooh: Nazi Or Jew?

"Defeat The Fascist Pirates:" Nostalgiac Anti-Fascist Found Footage

Almost 15 mins. of work time you'll never get back.

4 December (Again): More Damn Colonists; "Boss" Tweed On The Loose; WPA Dismantled; Keef Electrocuted On Stage; Pan Am Through; Cancer Gets FZ; SCOTUS Continues Usurpation; Bolton Gone

Today is Friday, Dec. 4, the 338th day of 2009. There are 27 days left in the year. UPI Almanac.[Our flunkies at The AP neglected to add the narration. Maybe later. — Ed.]
Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec. 4, 1619, settlers from Bristol, England, arrived at Berkeley Hundred in present-day Charles City County, Va., where they held a service thanking God for their safe arrival. (Some suggest that this was America's true first Thanksgiving.)
On this date:
In 1783, General George Washington bade farewell to his officers at Fraunces Tavern in New York.<object height="345px" width="410px"><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"/><param name="wmode" value="transparent"/><param name="movie" value=",t=1,mt=video"/><embed src=",t=1,mt=video" width="410" height="345" allowFullScreen="true" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" wmode="transparent"></embed></object>[Note (15 March 2014): No idea what the hell that was ... The iNternet is forever, right? — M.B.]

Today in History...

1783: General George Washington bids his officers farewell at Fraunces Tavern in New York; they are so moved by his words they don't notice that he's long gone before the check arrives. [Lifted from ant farmer's almanac. — Ed.]
In 1816, James Monroe of Virginia was elected the fifth president of the United States. In 1875, William Marcy Tweed, the "Boss" of New York City's Tammany Hall political organization, escaped from jail and fled the country. In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson left Washington for France to attend the Versailles Peace Conference. In 1942, US bombers struck the Italian mainland for the first time. President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the dismantling of the Works Progress Administration, which had been created to provide jobs during the Depression. In 1945, the Senate approved U.S. participation in the United Nations. In 1965, the United States launched Gemini 7 with Air Force Lt. Col. Frank Borman and Navy Cmdr. James A. Lovell aboard. In 1971, India joined East Pakistan in its war for independence from West Pakistan. East Pakistan became the republic of Bangladesh. In 1977, Jean-Bedel Bokassa, ruler of the Central African Empire, crowned himself emperor in a lavish ceremony. (Bokassa was deposed in 1979; he died in 1996 at age 75.) In 1978, San Francisco got its first female mayor as City Supervisor Dianne Feinstein was named to replace the assassinated George Moscone. In 1980, the bodies of four American nuns slain in El Salvador two days earlier were unearthed. (Five national guardsmen were later convicted of murder.) In 1984, a five-day hijack drama began as four armed men seized a Kuwaiti airliner en route to Pakistan and forced it to land in Tehran, where the hijackers killed American passenger Charles Hegna. In 1991, Associated Press correspondent Terry Anderson, the longest-held Western hostage in Lebanon, was released after nearly seven years in captivity. The original Pan American World Airways ceased operations.
In 1992, President George H.W. Bush ordered American troops to lead a mercy mission to Somalia, threatening military action against warlords and gangs who were blocking food for starving millions. In 1995, the first NATO troops landed in the Balkans to begin setting up a peace mission. In 1996, the Mars Pathfinder lifted off from Cape Canaveral and began speeding toward Mars on a 310 million-mile odyssey. (It arrived on Mars in July 1997.) In 1997, the National Basketball Association suspended All-Star Latrell Sprewell of the Golden State Warriors for one year for choking and threatening to kill his coach, P.J. Carlesimo, three days earlier. (An arbitrator later reduced the suspension and reinstated Sprewell to the Warriors, which had terminated his contract.) In 1999, NASA scientists continued to wait in vain for a signal from the Mars Polar Lander, raising questions about the whereabouts of NASA's $165 million probe. (It's believed the spacecraft was destroyed after it plunged toward the Red Planet.) In 2000, a Florida state judge refused to overturn Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush's certified victory in Florida, and the U.S. Supreme Court set aside a ruling that had allowed manual recounts. [Resulting in the destruction of a once semi-tolerable nation, & we don't mean Iraq, though there's no excuse for that either. — Ed.] In 2001, the United States froze the financial assets of organizations allegedly linked to the terrorist group Hamas. In 2002, United Airlines lost its bid for one-point-eight billion dollars in federal loan guarantees, a major setback to the nation's second-largest air carrier in its efforts to avoid bankruptcy. Supreme Court justices heard arguments on whether federal laws intended to combat organized crime and corruption could be used against anti-abortion demonstrators. (The Court later ruled that such laws were improperly used to punish abortion opponents.) A Roman Catholic priest was indicted on seven counts in a seven-month investigation of sex abuse allegations in the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland. Nine others faced charges in the case. In 2004, President George W. Bush received the president of Pakistan, Gen. Pervez Musharraf, in the Oval Office; afterward, Bush pronounced himself "very pleased" with Pakistan's efforts to flush out terrorists. In 2006, Lacking the Senate votes to keep his job, embattled U.N. Ambassador John Bolton offered his resignation to President Bush, who accepted it. [Ha ha ha. Punk-ass loser. — Ed.] Marine Lance Corporal Daniel Smith was convicted in the Philippines of raping a Filipino woman and sentenced to 40 years in prison. Truck driver Tyrone Williams was convicted in Houston of the deaths of 19 illegal immigrants crammed into a sweltering tractor-trailer. NASA announced plans to build an international base camp on the Moon. [Hurry up w/ that, wouldja? We'd really like to get off this planet. — Ed.] In 2008, US automakers drew fresh skepticism from lawmakers during a Senate Banking Committee hearing over their pleas for an expanded $34 billion rescue package they said was needed for them to survive. For the first time, an NFL game was broadcast live in 3-D to theaters in Boston, New York and Los Angeles. (Although the telecast was marred by technical glitches, fans were mostly forgiving as they watched the San Diego Chargers beat the Oakland Raiders 34-7.) Seven weeks into his second term, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper suspended Parliament in an attempt to stall a no-confidence vote.
Birthdays of the Dead: John Cotton, clergyman (1584); Thomas Carlyle, essayist, historian (1795); English novelist Samuel Butler (1835); actress/singer Lillian Russell in 1861; Edith Cavell, nurse (1865); Rainer Maria Rilke, poet (1875); Francisco Franco, Spanish dictator (1892) [Still dead. — Ed.]; Marine Corps fighter ace Gregory "Pappy" Boyington (1912); Dennis Wilson, pop musician (1944).
Today's Birthdays December 4: Actress-singer Deanna Durbin is 88. Game show host Wink Martindale is 76. Pop singer Freddy Cannon is 73. Actor-producer Max Baer Jr. is 72. Actress Gemma Jones is 67. Rock musician Bob Mosley (Moby Grape) is 67. Singer-musician Chris Hillman is 65. Musician Terry Woods (The Pogues) is 62. Rock singer Southside Johnny Lyon is 61. Actor Jeff Bridges is 60. Rock musician Gary Rossington (Lynyrd Skynyrd; the Rossington Collins Band) is 58. Actress Patricia Wettig is 58. Actor Tony Todd is 55. Jazz singer Cassandra Wilson is 54. Country musician Brian Prout (Diamond Rio) is 54. Rock musician Bob Griffin (The BoDeans) is 50. Rock singer Vinnie Dombroski (Sponge) is 47. Actress Marisa Tomei is 45. Actress Chelsea Noble is 45. Actor-comedian Fred Armisen is 43. Rapper Jay-Z is 40. Actor Kevin Sussman is 39. Actress-model Tyra Banks is 36.
Today in "Entertainment" History [No Beatle items today! — Ed.]: In 1944, country singer Eddy Arnold made his first recordings in Nashville. In 1956, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins made a series of impromptu recordings in Memphis at Sun Records. They were released 25 years later under the title "The Million Dollar Quartet." In 1965, Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones was knocked unconscious when his guitar touched an ungrounded microphone during a concert in Sacramento, California. He still managed to finish the show. In 1976, actress Elizabeth Taylor married Senator John Warner of Virginia. In 1980, the surviving members of Led Zeppelin announced they would not re-form after the death of drummer John Bonham. In 1989, the Supreme Court upheld an appeals court ruling that said Prince did not steal the song "U Got the Look" from his half-sister. Lorna Nelson claimed the lyrics were similar to ones she had written. In 1990, Madonna appeared on ABC's "Nightline" to defend her "Justify My Love" video, which was banned by MTV. She denied the video's explicit content was meant to stir up controversy and get publicity. In 1991, Van Halen performed a free show in Dallas. Lead singer Sammy Hagar had promised to do the show because he had lost his voice during a concert in Dallas three and a half years earlier. In 1993, composer & musician Frank Zappa died at his home in Los Angeles. He was 52. [To quote another dead local, talking about yet another dead musician: "Poor Otis/Dead & gone/Left me here/To sing his song/Pretty little girl/With the red dress on/Poor Otis/dead & gone." — Ed.]

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Party Already Over?

Remember this?Here's the poop on the premiere, from TNR.

(As TNR "printed" the first four paragraphs twice, we'll save you the click, & see if we can get them to come after us for stealing their "intellectual" property.)
Tea Party: The Documentary Film, chronicling the movement from Bush’s bailouts to 9/12, probably won’t be coming to any theaters near you. It “premiered” last night in Washington’s Reagan Center, with Astroturf instead of a red carpet and tuxedoed anti-tax types instead of shining starlets. The producers haven’t secured a distribution agreement, and are relying on word of mouth and their website to promote the DVD (a perfect Christmas gift, at only $19.95). That’s fitting, certainly, for a movement that bills itself as the ultimate people-powered phenomenon: Who needs official channels, when you’ve got a couple wealthy, impassioned supporters?

“This whole thing was financed by American Express,” the Atlanta ad man Luke Livingston told me after the screening, patting his pocket. “My American Express card.”

Back in April, Livingston says, he knew that the tax day tea parties popping up all around the country would eventually lead to some sort of protest in Washington. So the financier—whose clients range from Chick-fil-A to Bob’s Carpet Mart—teamed up with local talk radio host Joel Foster, and found six activists to track as they worked their way up from smaller events to the big March on Washington in September. Dick Armey’s FreedomWorks promoted the release at watch parties around the country, conservative luminaries including Jim DeMint and Joe Wilson headlined the D.C. rollout last night, and the movie landed on Rachel Maddow—the kind of buzz many studios couldn’t pay to get.

The 77-minute film, like Glenn Beck’s video trailer for the 9/12 Project, opens with an apocalyptic vision of storm clouds in Washington, as Democrats and Republicans sign checks to keep big companies from going under. Frighteningly high numbers for stimulus line items scrolls across the screen, as drums boom and writing on parchment goes up in flames. After that opener, though, the tension lifts: This is a hopeful story, after all.

The film’s protagonists are representations of the archetypal tea party activist. Dr. Fred, a primary care physician, just wants to take out kidney stones without interference from the government. Jenny Beth, a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, went bankrupt and started up a cleaning business to support her family. Jack, a health insurance agent, “risks losing his job” under proposed health care reforms and is finally taking a stand. The camera lingers around their dinner tables and foreclosed houses, with low-angle shots dramatizing their somber, heroic faces.

The movie has a certain defensiveness, stemming from the sense of persecution that has become part of tea party mythology. Andrew Breitbart riffs on how the mainstream media maligned and ignored the tea partiers, and the main characters talk incessantly about the small donations that funded their signs, web sites, and buses to Washington—not, God forbid, the corporate underwriters that Maddow et al harp on as the movement’s real drivers. Tea Party patron saint Glenn Beck is nowhere to be found, perhaps as much out of an inability to secure the rights to network footage as the desire to identify the movement with Real Americans rather than TV talking heads (just today, Livingston told me, CNBC gave them permission to use a clip of Rick Santelli’s anti-bailout rant, which may make it into a future cut).

The greatest defensive tic in the movie, though, centers around race. One of the featured characters is a black Detroit native named Nate, who voted for Barack Obama in 2008 “from an upbringing that taught him to mistrust America because of the color of his skin,” but who has since seen the light. The camera follows him as he tells a rapper named Bonz about how the government is stealing money from his pocket. He then tries to explain black psychology. “If they can’t make it, they might as well let the government take care of them,” Nate says, as if to answer the question of why he’s virtually the only person of color marching in a sea of white faces on the Mall. Then there’s William, a Revolutionary War reenactor who also happens to be the pastor of a black church and takes umbrage at allegations of racism. “It shows they do not really have an argument, when they accuse people of racism,” he says.

In the end, the film is not so much a documentary as a tribute: the tea party movement as it would like to be remembered. The premiere, attended by maybe 150 supporters, felt like a fond reminiscence of their finest hour, leaving the question: Is this movement going any further? In the last few months, there has been tension in the tea party ranks, and each protest grows crazier and more concentrated.

I asked one of the movie’s characters, a “20-something young professional” named Dave, whether he had stayed involved in conservative activism after the 9/12 march. “As far as my daily life and routine goes, no,” he said. “It was something I did in my free time.” After finishing his degree in political science, Dave plans to go into the Marines, and then law school. He’s looking to the G.I. Bill to pay for it.
"I'm mad as hell, & uh, well, I just don't have much free time anymore, y'know. But the president's still a nigger."

All This Can Be Yours For As Little As $50.00/Mo.!

gmail decided we should see this in the advert line above our in-box. We've decided you should see some of it too.

Telebision About To Get Even Worse

"Major Combat Operations" Of The Keyboard Kommandos

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

The Oakland Raiders have not enjoyed a winning season since 2002. No NFL team has a worse record since the 2003 season began. And the team's head coach, Tom Cable, has been accused of breaking an assistant coach's jaw during a summer meeting. The situation has gotten bad enough that fans have taken action.

A group of unhappy Raiders fans have formed, a web site urging team owner Al Davis to do four things:

1) Remove himself as general manager.
2) Hire a GM "with previous experience and success in the NFL."
3) Remove Cable and replace him with a "Super Bowl-Caliber" coach/director of football operations.
4) Ensure that the new coach has sufficient authority to make organizational decisions.
OK. Sure.

Snappy Answers To SIlly Questions

Is Lou Dobbs Too Mean to Be President?

No, he's too fat to be President. Like Michael Moore & algore. Balding, also.

Collegiate & Major League Snark

From the Los Angeles Times: They'd stink on ice.

3 December: It's A Day, We Guess ...

Today is Thursday, Dec. 3, the 337th day of 2009. There are 28 days left in the year. UPI Maniac.Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec. 3, 1984, thousands of people died after a cloud of methyl isocyanate gas escaped from a pesticide plant operated by a Union Carbide subsidiary in Bhopal, India.

On this date:
In 1818, Illinois was admitted as the 21st state.
In 1828, Andrew Jackson was elected president of the United States by the Electoral College.
In 1833, Oberlin College in Ohio -- the first truly coeducational school of higher learning in the United States -- began holding classes.
In 1857, English novelist Joseph Conrad was born in Berdychiv, Poland. (Or: Berdichev, Russia [now Ukraine].)
In 1910, Mary Baker Eddy, founder of the Christian Science movement, died.
In 1919, French painter and sculptor Pierre A. Renoir died at age 78.
In 1929, the Ford Motor Co. raised the pay of its employees from $5 to $7 a day despite the collapse of the U.S. stock market.
In 1948, The House Un-American Activities Committee announced that former Communist spy Whittaker Chambers had produced microfilm of secret documents hidden inside a pumpkin on his Maryland farm.
In 1964, Police arrested some 800 students at the University of California at Berkeley, one day after the students stormed the administration building and staged a massive sit-in. [The Free Speech Movement. — Ed.]
In 1967, surgeons in Cape Town, South Africa led by Dr. Christiaan Barnard performed the first human heart transplant on Louis Washkansky, who lived 18 days with the new heart. The 20th Century Limited, the famed luxury train, completed its final run from New York to Chicago.
In 1989, East German Communist leader Egon Krenz, the ruling Politburo and the party's Central Committee resigned.
In 1992, the Greek tanker Aegean Sea spilled 21.5 million gallons of crude oil when it ran aground off northwestern Spain. Also in 1992, Roman Catholic officials in Boston agreed to pay compensation to 68 people who claimed they were sexually abused 25 years ago by priest James Porter.
In 1994, Elizabeth Glaser, who became an AIDS activist after she and her two children were infected with HIV via a blood transfusion, died at age 47.
In 1997, President Clinton hosted his first town hall meeting on America's race relations in Akron, Ohio.
In 1999, World Trade Organization talks collapsed in Seattle. Six firefighters died while battling a fire in an abandoned Worcester, Mass. industrial building. Scientists failed to make contact with the Mars Polar Lander after it began its fiery descent toward the Red Planet; the spacecraft is presumed destroyed. Tori Murden of the United States became the first woman to row across the Atlantic Ocean alone as she arrived at the French Carribean island of Guadeloupe, 81 days after leaving the Canary Islands near the coast of Africa. Billionaire banker Edmond Safra suffocated in a smoke-filled bathroom in his Monaco apartment; American nurse Ted Maher confessed to setting the fire that killed the 67-year-old Safra.
In 2002, thousands of personnel files released under a court order showed that the Archdiocese of Boston went to great lengths to hide priests accused of abuse, including clergy who'd allegedly snorted cocaine and had sex with girls aspiring to be nuns. U.N. weapons inspectors made their first unannounced visit to one of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's presidential palaces.
In 2003, an international court in Tanzania convicted three Rwandan media executives of genocide for inciting a 1984 killing spree by machete-wielding gangs accused of slaughtering about 800,000 Tutsis.
In 2004, it was announced that Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was staying on the job. Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson resigned, warning as he left of a possible terror attack on the nation's food supply. The Ukraine Supreme Court ordered a rerun of the head-to-head presidential contest, setting off rejoicing by supporters of Western-leaning Viktor Yushchenko, who ended up the winner.
In 2006, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez won re-election, defeating Manuel Rosales.
In 2008, President-elect Barack Obama selected New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson as his commerce secretary. (However, Richardson withdrew a month later when it appeared his confirmation hearings would be complicated by a grand jury investigation over how state contracts were issued to political donors; Gary Locke ended up being appointed.) Theological conservatives upset by liberal views of US Episcopalians and Canadian Anglicans formed a rival North American province.
Today's Birthdays December 3: Country singer Ferlin Husky is 84. Singer Andy Williams is 82. Movie director Jean-Luc Godard is 79. Singer Jaye P. Morgan is 78. Actor Nicolas Coster is 76. Actress Mary Alice is 68. Rock singer Ozzy Osbourne is 61. Actress Heather Menzies is 60. Rock singer Mickey Thomas is 60. Country musician Paul Gregg (Restless Heart) is 55. Actor Steven Culp is 54. Actress Daryl Hannah is 49. Actress Julianne Moore is 49. Olympic gold medal figure skater Katarina Witt is 44. Actor Brendan Fraser is 41. Singer Montell Jordan is 41. Actor Royale Watkins is 40. Actor Bruno Campos is 36. Actress Holly Marie Combs is 36. Actress Lauren Roman is 34. Pop-rock singer Daniel Bedingfield is 30. Actress Anna Chlumsky is 29. Actor Brian Bonsall is 28. Actress Amanda Seyfried is 24. Actor Michael Angarano is 22. Actor Jake T. Austin is 15.
In Show Biz Today:
In 1925, Concerto in F, by George Gershwin, had its world premiere at New York's Carnegie Hall, with Gershwin himself at the piano.
In 1947, the Tennessee Williams play "A Streetcar Named Desire" opened on Broadway.

In 1953, the musical "Kismet" opened on Broadway. It featured the song "Stranger In Paradise."
In 1960, the Lerner and Lowe musical "Camelot" opened on Broadway.
In 1965, the album "Rubber Soul" by the Beatles was released. [Seriously, is there a Beatle event every single day? — Ed.]
In 1966, The Monkees performed their first live concert in Honolulu.
In 1968, Elvis Presley's now famous comeback special was broadcast on NBC.
In 1971, the Montreux Casino in Switzerland burned down during a performance by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. Deep Purple was the opening act and wrote about it in their song "Smoke on the Water." [22 yrs. & one day later, Frank would die. — Ed.]
In 1976, seven gunmen broke into singer Bob Marley's house in Jamaica. Marley, his wife, their manager and a house guest were shot and wounded. The gunmen were never caught. Also in 1976, Pink Floyd released a 40-foot inflatable pig at Battersea Power Station in England so they could photograph it for their "Animals" album cover. The pig broke loose, and authorities had to alert pilots to watch for a flying pig.
Thirty years ago, in 1979, eleven people were killed in a crush of fans at Cincinnati's Riverfront Coliseum, where the British rock group the Who was performing. Dozens of others were injured.
In 1992, Stevie Wonder was given a Lifetime Achievement Award by the National Academy of Songwriters.
In 1997, the country group Little Texas announced they planned to break up at the end of the year.
In 1998, rapper Coolio was found guilty of stealing clothes from a boutique in Stuttgart, Germany, and punching the boutique owner. He was fined $30,000 dollars.
In 1999, Oscar-nominated actress Madeline Kahn died of ovarian cancer in New York. She was 57.
In 2005, singer Marilyn Manson married burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese at a castle in Ireland. They have since divorced.
Thought for Today: "It is right noble to fight with wickedness and wrong; the mistake is in supposing that spiritual evil can be overcome by physical means." — Lydia Maria Child, American author (1802-1880). [Yes, we must crush their spirits, not just their bodies. — Ed.]

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

"I'm not O. J., let me get the hell out of here." (2:13)

Brilliant at Breakfast.

Civil Discourse

A big story

Huge Explosion Reveals the Most Massive Star Known

prompts a snide remark which we found rather amusing:
I wonder how long it will be before Pam Geller blames it on Muslim terrorists.

O'er The Bounding Main

Exclamation of astonishment.From Alternate Brain.

Going Bowling

"Sarah Palin is a great friend to the bowling industry and we're so proud and honored to welcome her as our keynote speaker at International Bowl Expo 2010," said Steven Johnson, executive director of the BPAA. "Regardless of your political affiliation, Ms. Palin is a force in American politics and culture. Her presence underscores the impact and importance of bowling, one of our country's leading national pastimes and a growing $10 billion industry."

They Don't Actually Call It "Extreme," But At 150 Clams/Bottle ... (UPDATED)

Samuel Adams Introduces Extreme Beer
The new brew from Samuel Adams has the highest alcohol content of any beer on the market, 27 percent.
Boston, MASS-- It's Sam Adams with quite a punch -- and a price to match. The new brew from Samuel Adams has the highest alcohol content of any beer on the market, 27 percent. It's also banned in 13 states because of the alcohol. It's called Utopias and it sells for about 150 bucks a bottle. It has a cognac-like hit and is served at room temperature. Jim Koch, founder and owner of the Boston Beer Co., says they're trying to push the envelope. He says the Utopias are aged for 15 years and should be sipped like champagne.

Source: Associated Press

UPDATE (2 December 2009 @ 0420): Not the highest proof on the world market, it appears. America absolutely is in decline. UPDATE from Chrome Beach.

Some Gal/Guy Bitching (Not Us, For Once)

Hold on a second, I’m getting a text… What’s that? Meet at Monica’s pool? Bring Smirnoff Ice, turntables, foam cushions and an ironic hat? What are my crazy friends up to now?!?

You know why none of these wacky commercials featuring hipsters organizing and pulling off crazy magical stunts make any sense? Because douchebag hipsters lack the ability to get off their dirty asses to do anything, unless it involves 10 speed bikes and/or skinny jeans.
Many awful adverts, too.

2 December: Nappy Crowns Self Emperor Of The Frogs; Monroe Doctrine Outlined; John Brown's Body Starts Mouldering; FoMoCo Rolls Out Model A; McCarthy Censured; Scientists demonstrate the world's first artificially-created, self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction; Enron Goes Chapter 11; Escobar KIlled

Today is Wednesday, Dec. 2, the 336th day of 2009. There are 29 days left in the year. Another almanac.Today's Highlights in History:
One hundred and fifty years ago, on Dec. 2, 1859, militant abolitionist John Brown was hanged for his raid on Harpers Ferry the previous October. [Parallels drawn w/ today. You're welcome. — Ed.] Artist Georges-Pierre Seurat was born in Paris.
On this date:
In 1804, Napoleon crowned himself Emperor of the French.

In 1816, the first savings bank in the United States, the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society, opened.
In 1823, President James Monroe outlined his doctrine opposing European expansion in the Western Hemisphere.
In 1859, militant abolitionist John Brown was hanged for his Oct. 16 raid on a federal armory at Harpers Ferry in present-day West Virginia. (Brown had hoped to start an anti-slavery rebellion.)
In 1927, Ford Motor Co. formally unveiled its second Model A automobile, the successor to its Model T. Model A roadsters were priced at $395.
Seventy years ago, in 1939, New York Municipal Airport-LaGuardia Field (later LaGuardia Airport) went into operation as an airliner from Chicago landed at one minute past midnight.
In 1942, an artificially created, self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction was demonstrated for the first time, at the University of Chicago.

In 1954, the Senate voted to condemn Wisconsin Republican Joseph R. McCarthy for conduct that "tends to bring the Senate into disrepute."

In 1961, Cuban leader Fidel Castro declared himself a Marxist-Leninist who would lead Cuba to Communism.
In 1967, Cardinal Francis Spellman died in New York City at age 78.
Forty years ago, in 1969, the Boeing 747 jumbo jet got its first public preview as 191 people, most of them reporters and photographers, flew from Seattle to New York City.
In 1970, the Environmental Protection Agency began operating under director William Ruckelshaus.
In 1980, four American churchwomen were raped and murdered outside San Salvador. (Five national guardsmen were convicted in the killings.)
In 1982, doctors at the University of Utah Medical Center performed the first implant of a permanent artificial heart in a human. Barney Clark lived 112 days with the device. Audio Link
In 1989, President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev held the first talks of their wind-tossed Malta summit aboard the Soviet cruise ship Maxim Gorky.
In 1990, Chancellor Helmut Kohl's center-right coalition easily won the first free all-German elections since 1932. Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein declared that the chance for war was "50-50," depending on U.S. willingness to negotiate the Persian Gulf crisis.
In 1990, composer Aaron Copland died at age 90.
In 1993, Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar was shot to death by security forces in Medellin.
In 1999, Relative calm took over in Seattle, where a meeting of the World Trade Organization was greeted earlier with sometimes violent demonstrations. All six Republican presidential hopefuls, including Texas Governor George W. Bush, debated in Manchester, N.H. In Northern Ireland, a power-sharing Cabinet of Protestants and Catholics sat down together for the first time.
In 2001, Enron filed for Chapter 11 protection in one of the largest corporate bankruptcies in U.S. history. A bomb went off aboard a bus in Haifa, killing 15 Israelis. U.S. forces in Afghanistan captured John Walker Lindh, 20, a U.S. citizen from San Anselmo, Calif., found fighting with the Taliban.
In 2002, U.S. President George W. Bush said "the signs are not encouraging" that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein would comply with U.N. resolutions on disarmament despite the prospect of military action should he fail to do so. Also in 2002, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston reportedly considered bankruptcy protection in the wake of the clergy sex abuse scandal. More than 200 alleged victims were involved.
In 2004, President George W. Bush chose former New York police commissioner Bernard Kerik to run the Department of Homeland Security. (However, Kerik withdrew his name days later, citing immigration problems with a former nanny; he later pleaded guilty to eight felonies, including lying to the White House.) President Bush announced that Nebraska Gov. Mike Johanns was his choice as the next agriculture secretary, replacing Ann Veneman. U.N. ambassador John Danforth resigned after five months representing the US at the world body. Dame Alicia Markova, one of the 20th century's greatest ballerinas, died in Bath, England, a day after turning 94. Pulitzer-winning poet Mona Van Duyn, the nation's first female poet laureate, died in University City, Mo. at age 83. Also in 2004, NATO officially handed over peacekeeping duties in Bosnia to European forces known as Eufor.
In 2007, Russian President Vladimir Putin's party dominated parliamentary elections. Putin, who cannot seek another consecutive term, is expected to name his successor and run for prime minister. Also in 2007, Venezuela voters rejected a referendum pushed by President Hugo Chavez that would have abolished presidential term limits and given Chavez new power to build a socialist economy.
In 2008, President-elect Barack Obama promised swift action on an economic plan "to solve this crisis and to ease the burden on our states." Republican Saxby Chambliss won a Georgia runoff, denying Democrats a 60-seat, filibuster-proof majority in the Senate (until Al Franken's belated victory over Norm Coleman in Minnesota). Folk singer Odetta died in New York at age 77. Henry Molaison, the patient known as "H.M." whose severe amnesia led to groundbreaking studies of how memory works, died in Connecticut at age 82.
Today's Birthdays December 2: Character actor Bill Erwin is 95. Former Secretary of State Alexander M. Haig is 85. ["Here at the White House, I am in control," he once said. Heh. — Ed.] Actress Julie Harris is 84. Former Attorney General Edwin Meese III is 78. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is 70. Actress Cathy Lee Crosby is 65. Movie director Penelope Spheeris is 64. [Jeeziz! — Ed.] Actor Ron Raines is 60. Country singer John Wesley Ryles is 59. Actor Keith Szarabajka is 57. Actor Dan Butler is 55. Broadcast journalist Stone Phillips is 55. Actor Dennis Christopher is 54. Actor Steven Bauer is 53. Figure skater Randy Gardner is 52. Country singer Joe Henry is 49. Rock musician Rick Savage (Def Leppard) is 49. Rock musician Nate Mendel (Foo Fighters) is 41. Actress Rena Sofer is 41. Rock singer Jimi HaHa (Jimmie's Chicken Shack) is 41. Actress Lucy Liu (loo) is 41. Tennis player Monica Seles is 36. Singer Nelly Furtado is 31. Pop singer Britney Spears is 28. Actress Daniela Ruah (TV: "NCIS: Los Angeles") is 26.
Today In Entertainment History December 2
In 1933, "Dancing Lady," Fred Astaire's first film, was released. Joan Crawford was his dance partner.
In 1943, "Carmen Jones" opened on Broadway. It was Oscar Hammerstein the Second's contemporary reworking of the Bizet opera "Carmen" with an all-black cast.
In 1949, Gene Autry's "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" hit the pop charts.
In 1973, mail-in ticket requests for a Bob Dylan US tour went on sale. At one San Francisco post office, there was a five block-long traffic jam. Also in 1973, The Who spent the night in jail in Montreal after causing $6,000 worth of damage to a hotel room. The incident inspired John Entwistle to write "Cell Block Number Seven."
Thirty years ago, in 1979, Stevie Wonder appeared at New York's Metropolitan Opera House. He performed selections from his album "Journey Through The Secret Life Of Plants" with the National Afro-American Philharmonic Orchestra.
In 1983, MTV first aired Michael Jackson's 14-minute "Thriller" video.
In 1986, Jerry Lee Lewis checked into the Betty Ford Clinic to overcome an addition to painkillers.
In 1990, actress Katharine Hepburn made a rare appearance in Washington to accept the Kennedy Center Honor for Lifetime Achievement. Actor Bob Cummings died at age 80.
In 1996, actor Burt Reynolds filed for bankruptcy.
In 2000, Smashing Pumpkins played their last concert with the original lineup, at a club in Chicago. It was the same club where they had played their first show 13 years earlier.
In 2004, Brian Williams anchored his first "Nightly News" program on NBC, taking over from Tom Brokaw.
A UPI thought for the day: Casey Stengel once remarked, "There comes a time in every man's life and I've had many of them."