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  • Today's comic by Jen Sorensen is Shoppers go wild for Walmart strike:
    Cartoon by Jen Sorensen - Shoppers go wild for Walmart strike
  • Melinda Gates explains why condoms are a foreign policy issue.
  • Patrick Bond says screw climate conferences: The author of Politics of Climate Justice was interviewed by Busani Bafana of the Inter Press Service about the climate conference now under way in Doha, Qatar. He called it to a “conference of polluters”:
    There is no political will among rich nations to find funding for developing countries experiencing the brunt of changes in global weather patterns, and the current climate change conference will fail to do so, according to Professor Patrick Bond, a leading thinker and analyst on climate change issues.

    “The elites continue to discredit themselves at every opportunity. The only solution is to turn away from these destructive conferences and avoid giving the elites any legitimacy, and instead, to analyse and build the world climate justice movement and its alternatives,” Bond, a political economist and also the director of the Centre for Civil Society at the University of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa, told IPS.

  • The conference runs through Dec. 7.
  • Kentucky teacher gets tsk-tsked for writing ”You can’t be a Democrat & go to heaven” on classroom whiteboard: The parent of a student in the class has filed a complaint with the Education Professional Standards Board after Kendra Baker wrote the words on the board in a psychology class. The school superintendent told a reporter that Baker knows what she did was "inappropriate."
  • Hartford and Mary Black Eagle, Barack Obama's adoptive Crow parents in 2008.
    Barack Black Eagle with his adoptive Crow
    parents, Hartford and Mary Black Eagle.
    President Obama's adoptive Crow father dies: Hartford Black Eagle, 78, a spiritual elder of the Crow Tribe, died at his home in Lodge Grass, Montana, Monday after a battle with pneumonia and emphysema. He and his wife Mary Black Eagle formally adopted Barack Obama in a traditional Crow ceremony in 2008, naming him Barack Black Eagle and making him an honorary member of the Whistling Water Clan of the tribe, which is known in its own tongue as Apsáalooke. The Black Eagles' son Cedric is the outgoing chairman of the tribe.

    Here is Obama addressing the Crow Tribe on May 20, 2008. In November 2009, in opening remarks at the First Tribal Nations Conference at the White House, Obama said:

    You know, a couple of summers ago, I had the opportunity to visit the Crow Nation in Montana. And while I was there, I was adopted into the nation by a wonderful couple, Hartford and Mary Black Eagle. I know what they're saying now:  "Kids grow up so fast." Only in America could the adoptive son of Crow Indians grow up to become President of the United States.
    The Black Eagles attended all three of the Tribal Nations Conferences after Obama became president. The next conference begins Dec. 5.
  • For some of us, depressing on a number of levels: The average age of the four living members of the Rolling Stones is older than the average age of the nine members of the Supreme Court. The band is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a five-city tour.
  • Who? What?: Herman Cain, delighted his 9-9-9 plan got a mention on the CBS police procedure show NCIS, calls it a "cultural icon! Or something." Yes, or something.
  • Christianist stooge Rick Warren has another epiphany about gays:
    Here’s what we know about life. I have all kinds of natural feelings in my life and it doesn’t necessarily mean that I should act on every feeling. Sometimes I get angry and I feel like punching a guy in the nose. It doesn’t mean I act on it. Sometimes I feel attracted to women who are not my wife. I don’t act on it. Just because I have a feeling doesn’t make it right. Not everything natural is good for me. Arsenic is natural.
    So many temptations for a retort...
  • Chinese "tweets" rip People's Daily over Onion story: The People's Daily on-line, The Chinese Communist Party's propaganda outlet on the internet got reamed by readers after it got taken in by a story from The Onion saying North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un was 2012's "sexiest man alive." The People's Daily website removed its coverage of the story after realizing it was satirical, but only after getting a barrage of ridicule. Among the comments on Sina Weibo, China's Twitter imitator: "Actually, People's Daily and The Onion are the same."
  • If you were hoping for little green Martian microbes, forget it: All the OMG speculation about rover Curiosity having found something spectacular on Mars is getting the lower-your-expectations treatment now, with spokespeople for the project and others saying that mission scientist John Grotinger's much-quoted comment—"This data is gonna be one for the history books"—was not meant to mean the rover team had found something "earthshaking" in the soil of the red planet. Amanda Wills as Mashable writes:
    What Grotzinger was actually trying to convey is that Curiosity’s data over her entire two-year mission will further our knowledge of Mars more than ever before, making it a historical mission.
  • Back on earth, however:
    Lake Vida, a salty lake buried under a 60-foot-thick sheet of ice in Antarctica, has renewed scientists' hopes of finding alien life in space, even in the most inhospitable places. The lake, which has been completely sealed off from the rest of the world for thousands of years, is surprisingly teeming with microbial life. "By seeing what the boundaries of life are on Earth, that helps us when we go out and look for examples elsewhere," says Peter T Doran, a professor at the University of Illinois’ Earth and Environmental Science department.
  • Serbian villagers warned about vampire stalking them:
    Residents of the western Serbian village of Zarozje reportedly received a unique public health warning recently, when the town's mayor cautioned that a vampire was on the loose. That is not a joke, and the people of Zarozje are taking heed and stocking up on garlic bulbs and crosses.
  • On today's Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin abbreviated the APR, and we talked exit polling and the new political reality: you can't win with just the conservative base anymore. Another critique of Jonathan Bernstein's latest critique of filibuster reform. And Armando joined us for an extended interview with longtime Daily Kos and Netroots community member Debra Cooper, who's running for a newly open seat on the New York City Council. Believe it or not, it's a race that can have national implications. Find out why!

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