This is nothing like the Tour de France. These bike racers are a different breed of cat. They are ultra marathoners and they are about to undergo 12 days (or less) of hell. On June 11 at noon EDT, the 2013 Race Across America began and several riders took off from the pier at Oceanside, CA and will not stop until they finish in Annapolis MD, 3000 miles away. Last year's winner, Reto Schoch of Switzerland did it in about 8 days, 6 hours. It's basically one long time trial. When they sleep, the clock keeps running. When Jure Robic of Slovenia won in 2004, it is estimated he slept a total of 4 hours during 8 days of racing.
While the race cannot be seen live even on the internet, the thing I check all day long during the race is the racer's listed progress on the leaderboard. All along the course there are timestops where the riders must check in with race officials. As of right this very second, the leaders of the race have passed the 342 mile time stop in Salome, AZ. Currently, the 2011 winner in the male under 50 category, Christoph Strasser of Austria, is leading the 2012 winner (Schoch) by about 42 minutes. In the women's category, six-time winner Seana Hogan is leading the pack even though she competes in the 50-59 category. Maria Parker is in second place even though she rides a recumbent bicycle.
Different breed of cat. They can race in teams and rotate riders or simply race in the solo category. They need to have a chase vehicle and they need to obey the rules of the road like stopping at stop signs. They raise money for charity. They even have their own disease. I'll explain after the squiggle.
Thank Pete for scientists. They keep a pretty good tab on the sea ice up in the Arctic. This is a very bookmarkable link (graphs galore). In the late spring there is as much as 15 million square kilometers of sea ice caused by the annual blackout of the Earth's rotation during the northern hemisphere's winter. By the beginning of Autumn, there can be as little as 3 million square kilometers of sea ice due to the sun's exposure to the tilted Earth. 3 million is now the new normal.
As of July 17, the amount of Arctic Sea Ice is below 5 million square kilometers which is earlier than any time before in recorded history. By way of comparison, years 1979 and 1985 spent 45 days (as opposed to 9 days) going from 6 mil sq. K. down to 5 mil. sq.K.
Well, the "Atlas Shrugged: Part 1" motion picture is about to be released on DVD. Makes sense. It had a theatrical release in mid April and now is about time a movie like that would go to DVD. After all, it has some money to make before it can be called a success. According to IMDB, "Atlas Shrugged: Part 1" made $4,563,873 in box office revenues after the producers spent about $6.5 million to make the movie. A bit of a box office bomb.
One of the most important aspects of selling a DVD is the box cover. It is what the customer sees before he decides to make the purchase. Well, the producers went ahead and printed them all up before looking at what they were printing. Chris Moody from The Ticket explains it best:
The company behind the film Atlas Shrugged Part 1 is replacing 100,000 title sheets from the film's newly released DVD and Blue Ray versions because the copy writer incorrectly described the late Ayn Rand's 1957 novel, Atlas Shrugged, as a story of "self-sacrifice."
Put simply, that's like calling Michael Moore a tea partier.
Rand, who in 1964 published a collection of essays called the The Virtue of Selfishness, renounced self-sacrifice on principle. She famously argued that altruism must be rejected "if any civilization is to survive."
The odd thing here is that they went to print without any system of proofing. As a person who works in the graphic design industry, it seems odd that an important piece of marketing material could get the green-light at the copywriting stage. It typically goes to an editor or product manager before printing. Oh well, just tack the price onto the $6.5 million in production costs.
If you're into this kind of thing, the UFC is putting on another at Fort Hood in Texas. The last time the UFC did one of these events, it raised $4 million that went to the completion of the National Intrepid Center of Excellence located next to the Bethesda Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Md. This facility is one of the most advanced facilities in the world dedicated to research and treatment of nonpenetrating brain injuries.
According to the Department of Defense, Traumatic Brain Injury has affected more than 115,000 service personnel since the year 2000. The real number of troops affected is likely much higher. Former troops that spent time in combat suffer from 20% unemployment rates, mental illness and uncommonly high rates of suicide. While TBI has been around ever since war was invented, the study of this affliction has only been taken seriously in the last five to 10 years.
The Observer has learned that MSNBC president Phil Griffin is in discussions with syndicated talk radio host Ed Schultz about possibly joining the network on a full-time basis. It is unclear what exactly the job would entail should Mr. Schultz and MSNBC come to an agreement.
On March 10, Mr. Schultz, who bills himself as the "most listened-to progressive radio talk show host in America," guest-hosted on MSNBC’s 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. As The Observer reported at the time, the appearance touched off a wave of rumors among MSNBC staffers that Mr. Schultz was being groomed to join the network as an anchor.
One network source told The Observer that an offer has already been extended to Mr. Schultz. A network spokesperson denied that any offer has been made.
When reached by phone on Friday morning, Mr. Schultz also denied that Mr. Griffin had made him an offer.
Apparently Phil Griffin is looking to make something out of the 10 pm slot at MSNBC.
And now he wants us to quit "whining" about his blunder.
There is a laundry list of things wrong with our economy right now: Weak dollar, high energy prices, inflation, housing crisis, failing investment banks, rising unemployment, increasing wealth disparity, etc. Phil Gramm and his decades long push for deregulation stand at the heart of it. I will lay out the big three moves that Gramm has made while in office that directly contributed to the mess we are in... after the flip...
Gotta love those Friday news dumps. Lurita Doan managed to be found in violation of the Hatch Act and still manage to hold onto her job for 11 months. Then suddenly late last week, she tendered her resignation as head of the General Services Administration effective virtually immediately. Don't they usually come out with a statement saying that they will leave their jobs in a couple of weeks to spend more time with their families defense attorneys? It begged the question, "when will the other shoe drop?" Correct me if I'm wrong bet it seems the shoe dropped today.
Do you want the terrorists to win? What do you think has prevented another American soil terrorist attack? Obviously it was the NSA wiretapping. To go back to the quaint Bill of Rights only plays into the Islamofacists hands. To think wiretapping should be illegal would be an example of pre-9/11 thinking. We live in a new world (cough).
Besides, the telecommunications corporations say they have nothing to hide. They haven't done anything illegal. Of course, to prove this, they will have to endure several unfounded frivolous lawsuits. The mere allegation and bad press that they will have to go through will sour their stock price and interfere with the all-mighty free market. Any good American would want to protect their balanced 401k mutual fund as well as prevent another terrorist attack.
The average American thinks that the domestic wiretapping controversy only popped up after the feds started spying after 9/11, right? So how's about it Dodd, Obama and Feingold? Will you release the FISA hold if it only pertained to post 9/11 spying?
His spokesman confirmed it to The Hill. Before you get your hopes up, there will ba a Duncan Hunter on the ballot. It will be Duncan D. Hunter, the 30 year old spawn of the man himself.
Hunter insisted that he would not think of his father’s seat as something that was automatically his. “Dad always said there’s no hand me downs in anything. This is going to be a race just like any other race and it’s going to be a hard fight.”
Duncan the original says that he is opposed to running for two offices at the same time. Oh yeah, he's running for President...possibly. Before he officially announces, he ought to straighten out the FEC complaint filed by CREW.
involves killing non-Christians and Christians who don't convert to a particular form of Christianity, teaches teens that activists are "wolves in sheep's clothing," that rock and pop stars are "formidable spiritual opponents," and that non-Christian aid workers like doctors and nurses are enemy forces who can be killed. It also points to a passage on the game's Web site that says the Antichrist is "an imposturous one world government seeking peace for all of mankind," saying the game teaches players that those who seek peace are with the forces of evil.
Of course it's rated for teens. One would hope the general public would ignore it.
Thanks FOXNews for the national discussion over who is to blame for 9/11. Although assigning blame seldom solves the problem, you brought it up. Us lefties were content in keeping the Bush administration's failures private. After all, you righties own the media (F*** You Bill O'Reilly). The real story would never have seen the light of day had you not, drunken on hubris, goaded Chris Wallace into pulling a Springer on Bill Clinton (he thought he was appearing on FOXNews for a makeover). In this country, unless the MSM picks it up, it didn't happen.