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Sometimes I think the terrorists are winning.  Sometimes I know they are.  ABC reports today that fighter jets scramble following at least 6 reports of threats to passenger planes.  Here's an example:

Authorities said that the decision to have the plane escorted by two fighter jets was done "out of an abundance of caution" after the Maryland State Police McHenry Barrack, in Garrett County, received an anonymous call of a “chemical weapons threat” aboard Air France Flight 22, which was en route from Paris to the New York City airport.
And this is not the first time this has happened, one notorious example happening on 9/11/2011 involving long bathroom visits.  That particular incident resulted in strip-searching of several darker-skinned people.

So one does not even need a bomb anymore.  One doesn't even need to be on a plane.  All it takes is a telephone.  What exactly were these fighter jets going to do, anyway?  I thought we had the phone threat licked?  And what of all that drone warfare in Waziristan?  We should be reaping the dividends of peace from all that by now, no?

As Bruce Schneier says:

If you are scared, they win. If you refuse to be scared, they lose.

Does scrambling fighter jets in response to a phone threat sound like a reasonable strategy to you?

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Sun May 24, 2015 at 04:37 AM PDT

TPP will serve us. Here's how ...

by Cartoon Peril

Kanamits Offer Peace and Prosperity
      Peace and prosperity -- I'm loving it!

Ron Wyden
    Sen. Ron Wyden, TPP BFF, next to his signalling device.

    What could possibly go wrong?

BTW, what happened to the REAL Ron Wyden (D-?????).  Some theories below the Squiggle of Socialism.


TPP will serve us. What say you?

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Thus spake Strother Martin:

And now we learn that because ... uh ... pornography is icky, our team is not going to release Osama bin Laden's porn stash.  

Now, let's see: we've got a holy warrior jihadi martyr myth problem going on right now with the late OBL and gee, what might make the guy look like a freaky hypocrite?  

I'd say a  big stack of well worn videos with names like Insurgent Vixens, Kalashnikov Cheap Dates, T-34 Tramp, Light My Smoke Grenade and that timeless classic She wore Camo under Her Burka, along with OBL's signature for them at the Abbottabad Blockbuster would go a long way towards that end.


Should Osama bin Ladin's porno stash be released?

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I love me the Black Helicopter alien autopsy crowd.  It helps me feel so ... normal.  Anyway that's what I tell the voices ... voices I keep hearing: "Go to tupperware parties .. Jimmy Hoffa is running Area 51 ... Swiss bankers control Mars".

        Take no chances!  (Sorry, NWO mind controllers
   — this is not my cat!
But one place I don't love me the Black Helicopter crowd is in any kind of position of responsibility.  Now, Texas has a governor who apparently thinks that an ordinary military training exercise, Operation Jade Helm 15, is a sinister plot to confiscate our gunz, declare martial law, and replace people with alien seed pods.

And now here's Rafael Eduardo "No Longer a Canadian" Cruz joining the fray:

“My office has reached out to the Pentagon to inquire about this exercise,” he said. “We are assured it is a military training exercise. I have no reason to doubt those assurances, but I understand the reason for concern and uncertainty, because when the federal government has not demonstrated itself to be trustworthy in this administration, the natural consequence is that many citizens don’t trust what it is saying.”
Thanks Ted, for keeping us safe from the first demographically symbolic president.

When's the one time "conservatives" trust the government?

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The House Republicans, led by Steven King (R-Paint Huffing) to denounce their Number One Enemy, babies, or at least, the wrong colored ones anyway.  Now, a baby doesn't have much except the love of a mother and father, and some don't even have that.  But every baby born in this country has something of great value, and that is citizenship in the United States of America.

Now, this bothers some people, because derp.  One of these people is alleged legal scholar Lino A. Graglia, who climbed aboard the wingnut clown car a long time ago, and was brought out as an "expert" witness today by the Republicans.  

Too bad they didn't do their home work on Professor Graglia.  Because the Democrats did, and oh so deliciously.  All they had to do was go to Wikipedia -- see below the squiggle of Liberal Fascism for what they found.


If someone goes around saying blacks and hispanics have inferior intelligence, is "racist" an appropriate description for that person?

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For all you planning on heading to the Klondike any time soon:

Dr Sandon's electric belt

This may be the long awaited Republican alternative to Obamacare, no?


Dr. Sanden's Electric Belt ...

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I wondered how America's toughest sheriff, our very own tin god Joe Arpaio was going to react when he was confronted with charges of contempt of an order of a federal judge.  

Time for Huey P. Long
        Joe Arpaio, Version 1.0.
Recall this lawman previously has brought charges against judges, county commissioners, and newspaper reporters (to name a few) whenever they challenged or questioned his policies.  This of course is not to mention the numerous abuses, including deaths, perpetrated by his staff, upon powerless ordinary people, all at his direction.

Well, check this out, from Huffpo (4/23/15):

Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio dropped a bombshell in court Thursday when he said his former lawyer had hired a private investigator to look into the wife of the federal judge presiding over a contempt of court case against the sheriff.

The hearing took the strange turn after Arpaio had finished his testimony and Judge Murray Snow began asking him questions, including whether the sheriff was investigating his family.

See below Sguiggle of Socialism for more of Teh Crazy.

Is "dictator" a good description of America's Toughest Sheriff?

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Maybe.  WaPo sez:

Nearly 46,000 people have applied so far to go to an accredited U.S. law school in the most recent admissions cycle, a figure that puts applications on track to hit just short of 53,000 total. By comparison, there were a total of 77,000 applicants in 2010 and 90,000 in 2004, according to the Law School Admission Council.
The reason is that people age 22 or so are not interested in shelling out three years of their lives and $150,000 bucks to end up unemployed.  Harvard and Yale will keep graduating pricks like Ted Cruz, John Bolton, and the Five Scotus Doofusi, so if you want to be a senator, judge, or warmonger, those are the schools for you.  But for the vast majority of law students, they won't have the sort of automatic credentials that these schools anoint their graduates with.

Do you think the Socratic method is a good way to teach lawyers?

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I'm not renting to you.  In fact I'm evicting you.  You can't get a bank loan approved by me.  You can't get a car loan approved by me.  You can't order food in my restaurant.  I think you need to stay out of my school, store, and hospital.  You can't adopt any children.  If you have children, I think I might have to take them away.  

Don't tell me I can't do this.  My religion requires me to.  You're being intolerant of my religion when you do that.  

People like you are some of my best friends.

Very truly yours,

Piyush "Gilligan" Jindal


Is it fair to compare Bobby Jindal to Gilligan?

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Because there's nothing like perusing some good old-fashioned, and, now, state-sanctioned (sort of) smut to move you closer to the Almighty.  

Netherlands-4273 - Lot and his Daughters
      Lot doth get it on with his progeny -- in Tennessee, mayhap?
From Genesis 19:30-38:
Genesis 19:30 And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters.
31 And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth:
32 Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
33 And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
34 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
35 And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
36 Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.
And going back to that august body, the Tennessee House of Representatives, per the linked article on HuffPo:
"The controversy will not end in this chamber," Representative Martin Daniel said. "If we pass this, we're going to be ridiculed."
All that aside, here's some actual good stuff from Tennessee:


Is is a good idea to mock the Tennessee House of Representatives for passing a bill making the Bible the official state book?

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Because that's what you're gonna get if you keep letting police officers and vigilantes gun down black men, children, and the mentally ill.  To borrow a saying: fix it now.  

Obviously the lives of some people are worth less, a lot less, than others, and it's not surprising who ends up being the victims.  

I'd love to blame this on conservatives, Republicans, etc. but this is a bipartisan problem that's built up over many, many years.  Something radical is going to happen, and if it isn't radical change in policing methods, and change in the methods of policing the police, then it will come from the people, and it may not be controllable.

Let me make some modest proposals:

1) Decriminalize all the bullshit, such as the petty offenses that Ferguson turned into a money factory, and occasioned the killing of Eric Garner (sale of untaxed single cigarettes -- the horror) and too often serve as the excuse for oppression;

2) Demilitarize the police, which harms the relationship between the police and the citizens, even if not involved in any particular case;

3) Scrutinize the police, starting with mandatory dash and body cams.

4) Reallocate resources (hey, jail time ain't solving the problem) into community courts and similar endeavors.

5) Construct an adequate mental health care system.


Equal justice under law?

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Beth Van Duyne is the Mayor of Irving, Texas, a rather large city which is in the Dallas-Forth Worth area.  

It seems that some Muslims participate in a non-binding arbitration system to resolve civil disputes based on Sharia law, much like similar systems developed by other religions, such as Jews and some Christian denominations.  

However, Mayor Van Duyne perceives the Islamic dispute resolution as some kind of threat, and introduced a resolution in the city council, that, while not actually mentioning Islam, was clearly directed at it.  Let's hear from Eric Celeste, of frontburner who has a good take on all of this.  He interviewed the man in charge of the mosque in Irving, Zia ul-Haque Sheikh, who has had to deal with all of this.  Read the whole thing, but here is a quote:

“This all happened very quickly,” he says. His smile suggests weary bemusement over a social-media firestorm that recently engulfed Imam Zia and the Islamic Center. “It started with the right-wing website story. Then suddenly the mayor [of Irving, Beth Van Duyne] is posting on her Facebook page. From that, hatred and misinformation filled her site and others. And, of course, she had never even spoken with us.”

What's the best single word to describe political leaders who stir up religious hatred by lies and fear-mongering?

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