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From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…

Oh! More Things I Know:

> The Netroots Nation convention starts in 77 days.

> Reince Priebus's re-branding of the Republican party is going swimmingly. And by swimmingly I mean the kind of swimming where you can't swim so you drown.

> People who claim the oil companies don't use advanced oil-spill cleanup methods must've missed the day they upgraded from one-ply to two-ply paper towels.

Patas Monkey
This is what the very last human on
earth will see at the very last moment.
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> Last weekend I discovered that the best Easter jelly beans are the ones that say "Merck" on them.

> People are all excited about the new season of "Game of Thrones" on HBO. I'm more partial to "Game of Throw Rugs" on Bravo.

> I could support outsourcing our Legislative Branch to Scandinavia.

> Given that the combined efforts of entities like the Family Research Council, Focus on the Family and the Catholic Church haven't made even the tiniest dent in the U.S. divorce rate, they're not in a position to claim expertise on marriage of any kind.

> My favorite Oriental restaurant in Portland closed its doors for good last week. I used to joke about "sesame chicken withdrawal" but I don’t anymore. It's real and it's ferocious.

> The tea party's new goal: making Barack Obama "a one brain study president."

Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Thursday, April 4, 2013

Note: The last mound of snow in front of our house has finally melted.  If you're missing a brown sock, an arm from a Barbie doll or 625 cigarette butts, please see the attendant at the Lost & Found booth.  ---Mgt

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By the Numbers:
Days 'til Earth Day: 18
Days 'til Free Cone Day at Ben & Jerry's: 5
Percent of the world's population that says it would move to a different country if given the chance: 13%
Rank of the U.S., Britain and Canada among the top countries where people would prefer to move: #1, #2, #3
(Source: Gallup survey of 500,000 people in 154 countries, via Time)
Chance a U.S. worker doesn't get paid sick leave: 2-in-5
(Source: Harper's Index)
Rank of PNC Park in Pittsburgh among the top major league baseball parks in the country: #1
Rank of Boston's Fenway Park and Chicago's Wrigley Field: #4, #10
(Source: TripAdvisor survey via Pittsburgh Business Times)

And this just in:

Boston Red Sox 7  New York Yankees 4

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Your Thursday Molly Ivins Moment:

Molly ivins publicity photo  --- small
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I have a correspondent named Irwin Wingo in Weatherford, Texas.  Irwin and some of the leading men of the town are in the habit of meeting about ten every morning at the Chat 'n Chew Café to drink coffee and discuss the state of the world.  One of their number is a dittohead, a Limbaugh listener.  He came in one day, plopped himself down, and said, "I think Rush is right.  Racism in this country is dead.  I don’t know what the niggers will find to gripe about now."

I wouldn’t say that dittoheads, as a group, lack the ability to reason.  It's just that whenever I run across one, he seems to be at a low ebb in reasoning skills.
---May, 1995

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Puppy Pic of the Day:  Rebellion

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CHEERS to the generosity of the unwashed hippie rabble.  The OkIciyap ("We help") auction has been going on all this week via some amazing DKos Quilt Guild posts, and the top bid, as far as I know, is a little over $5,000.  Considering that this is what's up for bids…

The OkIciyap (
…five grand is a steal.  The money will go to good use, no doubt about that.  The auction benefits the Food Pantry of the Isabel Community---made up of members of the Lakota Sioux Tribe---in the Cheyenne River Reservation in north central South Dakota.  Auction bidding rules are here.  If on the off chance you're unable to top the top bid, you can still make a direct donation to the food pantry via credit card or your friendly U.S. Postal Service (Address: Okiciyap, PO Box 172, Isabel, SD 57633).  Auction ends on Sunday.  Followed by some lucky winner yelling "Squeee!!!" on Monday.

CHEERS to a public display of courage.  The state in which the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre happened is following Colorado's lead in showing the country how to respond to gun violence:

Golden sppine with lamp
The Golden Backbone Award
also makes a lovely lamp.
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Gun legislation that advocacy groups call the strongest and most comprehensive to be taken up across the nation moved closer to passage early Thursday as the Connecticut House approved the tough gun measure.  The vote, 105-44, followed passage by the Senate a day earlier.

According to a draft of the bill, the measure would add more than 100 types of guns to the state's list of banned assault weapons; limit the capacity of ammunition magazines to 10 rounds; ban armor-piercing bullets; require background checks for all weapon sales, including at gun shows; establish safety standards for school buildings; allow mental health training for teachers; and expand mental health research in the state.

People in Connecticut still get to have all the guns and ammo they could ever need for hunting and/or target shooting and/or protection.  But now there will be a little more freedom from fear, as the components of Connecticut's law work synergistically to reduce the likelihood of another Sandy Hook.  The Connecticut House and Senate: winners of today's Golden Backbone Award.  Saaaa…lute!

JEERS to the good dying young.  Speaking of gun violence, Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot and killed in Memphis 45 years ago today at the age of 39.  He was so eloquent that people shouted "Amen!" when he excused himself to go to the bathroom.  Our favorite Kingjuniorism resonates even louder now, given the radicalization of the Republican party: "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity."  Chances are your favorite quote is here too.  And how nice to finally have a memorial---MLK Jr.'s---on the National Mall that isn’t in honor of either a war or a president known for fighting one.  That was a dream worth having, too.

JEERS to dunces of the confederacy.  And now, a Very Special Message from North Carolina Republicans to the state's Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, atheists, agnostics and anybody else who doesn’t subscribe to the Baby Jesus Newsletter: Fuck y'all, now, ya hear?  Oh, yeah, this'll end well:

United States Constitution
The U.S. Constitution. Or, as
some Republicans in North
Carolina call it: snot rag.
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House Joint Resolution 494, filed by Republican Rowan County Reps. Harry Warren and Carl Ford, would refuse to acknowledge the force of any judicial ruling on prayer in North Carolina---or indeed on any Constitutional topic:

"The Constitution of the United States does not grant the federal government and does not grant the federal courts the power to determine what is or is not constitutional; therefore, by virtue of the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, the power to determine constitutionality and the proper interpretation and proper application of the Constitution is reserved to the states and to the people," the resolution states.  "Each state in the union is sovereign and may independently determine how that state may make laws respecting an establishment of religion," it states.

So come on down to North Crazylina, where, as long as Republicans are in power, every day is April Fool's Day.  (Retro-Apologies to actual fools for comparing them to North Carolina Republicans.  That was low.)

JEERS to the long and short of it. After he was sworn in, 68 year-old William Henry Harrison gave the longest inaugural speech of any president: 105 minutes.  Here are some of the highlights:

President William henry harrison
I think Harrison was also
our first vampire president.
9 minute mark: "That reminds me of a funny story, you guys will love this.  I'll give you the short version…"

26 minute mark: "Okay, lemme back up.  See, what I didn’t mention was that Aunt Gladys was a sleepwalker.  So round about 3am she's plowing my daddy's fields in her nightgown, sound asleep, when a barn owl swooped down and…wait…was it a barn owl?  Might have been a snow owl…whatever.  Anyway, the point is…"

42 minute mark: "Now, let me say a few words about weights and measures.  I'll limit my remarks on this topic to 25 paragraphs…"

60 minute mark: "Aaaaaahhhh…CHOOOO!!!!  I know, I know, say it don't spray it, ha ha ha…but as I was saying, I think the ounce is overrated and let me tell you why…"

87 mark: "So anyway, back to Aunt Gladys..."

102 minute mark: "And that's how my hand got stuck in the pickle jar!"

The day was unusually cold and windy, and he delivered his address in nothing more than a pair of boxers and a swath of leopard skin draped over his shoulder.  Bad move.  31 days later, on April 4, 1841, Harrison became the first president to die in office of either pneumonia or his doctors' treatment of his pneumonia.  Pay your respects here.  But don't get too close...he's still pretty pissed about it.

CHEERS to the red white and blue.  On April 4, 1818, Congress finally got off its duff and officially proclaimed that the U.S. flag would have thirteen red and white stripes to honor the minty freedom freshness of candy canes, and one star for each star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  They also decreed that any politician who fails to wear a five-pound American-flag lapel pin 24/7 will thus and forevermore be branded "a filthy tyrant wretch in dire need of a caning."  In other words, they got more done in a day than John Boehner has in two years.

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Five years ago in C&J: April 4, 2008

JEERS to Rip van Wanker.  Fed chairman Ben Bernanke---having apparently just woken from winter hibernation---warned yesterday that there's a teensy possibility that America may be headed for a recession.  His first clue: waking up to find that everyone else in the world thinks we're in a recession.  Man's got some sharp instincts.

JEERS to revisionist historians.  A Pentagon employee took time out of his, we presume, busy day, to trot over to Wikipedia and remove a reference to the sexual orientation (gay, naturally) in a dead Iraq war vet's entry.  I mean...what kind of person would do that???  The answer, I suspect, contains the word "moron" and a whole bunch of really nasty adjectives.

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And just one more...

Maya Angelou
Set phasers to
STUNNING!!!!
CHEERS to off-the-charts eloquence.  Happy 85th birthday to author and poet Maya Angelou!!!  I admit I'm not much for versification unless it's the rhymes-with-Nantucket kind, but I know a pro when I read one.  But I have a deeper reason for admiring Maya: she's a total Trekkie!!!
You're friends with Nichelle Nichols, who most people know as Lieutenant Uhura. Did you watch Star Trek?
I loved Star Trek.  I spoke to her.  I spoke right to the television.  "Hi, Nichelle!"
Live long and prosper, ma'am.  And many blessings on your starfleet's camels.

Have a nice Thursday.  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?

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Today's Shameless C&J Testimonial:

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) remains a very unpopular figure among his constituents, so much so that Bill in Portland Maine claims a slight popularity edge in the conservative state.
---TPM

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Poll

How confident are you that the House and Senate will pass an immigration-reform bill that progressives will see as reasonable and fair?

0%33 votes
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70%2700 votes
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| 3806 votes | Vote | Results

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