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Mornin', me hearrrrties! The most important day of the year is here: Talk Like A Pirate Day. C&J primes the annual pump:

Winston Churchill: "Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves, that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, 'This was their finest arrr!'"

Tesla: "Take yerself for a spin in our new electric carrr!"

American worker: "Thanks to those greedy bastards on Wall Street, I may never get to retarrr!"

President Barack Obama
"I'm appointing you my
Talk Like A Pirate Czarrr."
Sarah Palin: "I can see Russia from my house. That's farrrr!"

Ed Schultz: "Rush Limbaugh's a lowdown dirty larrr!"

Theatre Critic: "Don’t miss the revival of A Streetcar Named Desarrr!"

Law school graduate: "Passed the barrr!"

Bubba Watson: "Parrr!"

Democratic strategist: "Keep your eye on Texas State Senator Wendy Davis. She's a rising starrr!"

Postal abbreviation of Bill Clinton's home state: AR

Congressman Louie Gohmert: "Ready! Farrr! Aim!"

And a bonus:
"There is a big difference between a disappointing friend and a deadly enemy. Of course the Democrats are disappointing---that's what makes them Democrats. If they were any more frustrating they'd be your relatives. But in this country they are all that stands between you and darkest night. You know why their symbol is the letter 'D'? Because it's a grade that means 'good enough, but just barely.' You know why the Republican symbol is 'R'? Because it's the noise a pirate makes when he robs you and feeds you to a shark."
---Bill Maherrrr
C'mon down and splash. Today I replaced the kiddie pool with a pirate lagoon outfitted with an open barrrr! Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Thursday, September 19, 2013

Note: Every time a bell rings Senator David Vitter gets a new diaper.  Look it up!


Liger Hercules contests an
ump's call on the tennis court.
By the Numbers:
Days 'til the government runs out of money (but not bitcoins!): 12
Days 'til the North American Sandsculpting Championship in Virginia Beach: 8
Percent of Americans who believe it's against federal law to fire someone just because they're gay: 90%
Number of states in which it is legal to fire someone just because they're gay: 29
(Source: Harper's Index)
Number of arrests for "drug abuse violations" last year, 82 percent of which were for simple possession: 1.55 million
Percent of the possession arrests that were marijuana-related: 42%
(Source: Think Progress)
Weight of Hercules the "Liger," who holds the Guinness Book record as the largest cat in the world: 922 lbs.


Your Thursday Molly Ivins Moment:

Molly ivins publicity photo  --- small
The only reason Bush even needed a new head of the Office of Women's Health is because the last one, Susan Wood, quit. She was upset because the political hacks who run the agency refused to allow over-the-counter sale of the emergency contraceptive pill Plan B.

True, that decision was made against the advice of the FDA's own scientific advisory panel and will unquestionably result in more abortions and almost certainly damage to some women's health. But why would anyone expect the Bush hacks to pay attention to scientific and clinical evidence, fully evaluated and recommended by the professional staff? Just like the folks at FEMA, they got their jobs because they know how to set up photo-ops for Bush.
---September, 2005


Puppy Pic of the Day:  A girl and her elephant


CHEERS to the Great Thaw of 2013.  We're seeing three significant developments in this wacky world we call Wacky World Land.  1) The U.S. and Russia working brilliantly together to rid Syria of its chemical weapons (with Syria's blessing, no less).  2) A pope who ain't a total jerk towards gay people (and, if I may say, makes humbleness look tres chic.)  And now 3) The new Iranian president---seemingly with the blessing of the mullahs---wants to ratchet down the nuclear tensions with us:

Anwar Sadat, Menachem Begin and Jimmy Carter shake hands after signing their peace treaty March 26, 1979.
All you need is love.
Rouhani's comments are the latest in a slew of signs that he is cautiously open to defrosting relations with the U.S., which were in deep freeze under the isolating leadership of his predecessor, the inflammatory Mahmoud Ahmedinejad.  He and President Obama have exchanged letters in which they traded views on “some issues.”

"From my point of view, the tone of the letter was positive and constructive," Rouhani said of the note he got from the White House congratulating him on his June election, in which he defeated five hard-liners. … White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday that in the letter, Obama told Rouhani the U.S. is open to a resolution to the nuclear impasse in which Iran can prove its atomic program is peaceful.

If this kum by yah trend holds, my source tells me that #4 will be a Glenn Beck-Rachel Maddow hootenanny.

JEERS to intimidation nation.  This is how pathetic things have become on the gun fetish front.  The CEO of Starbucks is drawing a red line by demanding that his customers…um…please consider maybe not bringing your guns inside but if you still want to you can but gosh it'd be great if you didn't pretty please???  Cue the sound of the lead balloon doing the opposite of taking flight.

CHEERS to the War of the Bicameral Titans!  Oh, it’s on, baby!  In the halls of Congress, it’s a pitched battle for legislative supremacy.  Two sides locked in a titanic struggle for control of the almighty federal budget.  And as they tear each other to shreds, there's not a Democrat in sight:

Roman Gladiators
"Help! Tedus Cruzus hath
wounded meh! Fetch the
spray-on-tan and Marlboros!"
Whether the government shuts down likely depends on the outcome of a civil war in the Republican Party over health care, a tussle on full display Wednesday as House Republicans openly fought with their GOP counterparts in the Senate. … It's frustration driven by the reality that the House GOP could take the brunt of the blame if the government does shut down---even though it's [Ted] Cruz and a handful of other Republican senators who are leading the charge to use the government funding bill to defund ObamaCare. Sens. Mike Lee and Marco Rubio also issued statements on Wednesday praising House Speaker John Boehner for scheduling a vote on a government funding bill that included the defund ObamaCare provisions.  Boehner's move was a cave to his party's right-wing…

"(Sens) Cruz, Lee and Rubio are like the kids in high school who would yell 'fight, fight, fight,' but have never thrown a punch in their entire life," a Senior GOP aide told NBC News after Cruz released his statement.

And in a related story, today is the 31st birthday of the smiley-face emoticon.  :-)

JEERS to a reminder of why you can't spell wanker without "W."  Teabaggers say Obama ruined the economy, huh?  Really?  Let's peek back four years to the Census Bureau report on Bush II's record, and see if we can spot any clues as to why he's still persona non grata in the Republican party:

Bush II photo with caption
No shit, Sherlock.
On every major measurement, the Census Bureau report shows that the country lost ground during Bush’s two terms. While Bush was in office, the median household income declined, poverty increased, childhood poverty increased even more, and the number of Americans without health insurance spiked.
Nietzsche said, "What does not destroy me makes me stronger."  I guess that explains why, after eight years of Bush, I can still go outside anytime I want and bench press an SUV.

CHEERS to heavenly bodies.  (Sorry to disappoint you, but I'm talking about the actual out-there-in-space kind.)  This is your reminder to go outside tonight and wink at the full moon in honor of Neil Armstrong.  As a bonus, it's also a harvest moon:

Harvest moon
The full moon nearest the fall equinox is known as Harvest  Moon and was probably coined by farmers in the Northern Hemisphere since its added light is said to have helped them gather in their crops.  Binoculars will easily show off the moon’s dark patches visible with the naked eyes. Called plains or maria in Latin, meaning seas, these are vast, ancient lava plains formed over billions of years ago when magma from the moon’s interior spilled out onto the surface, triggered by giant asteroid impacts.
You know what else you'll be able to see tonight?  Uranus.  But only if you use a mirror Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!!!  (Sorry.  That's the sobriety talking.)

President James Garfield
Fact: Garfield kept the nuclear
launch codes written on a wax
tablet stashed in his beard.
JEERS to deep-sixing #20.  On September 19, 1881, President James Garfield died 80 days after some disgruntled jerk whipped out a couple guns and shot him in the back. True story: Alexander Graham Bell tried to locate the bullet using his new invention, the metal detector:
As the doctors struggled to understand the extent of Garfield's wounds, Bell, inventor of the telephone, used this machine to try to locate the bullet. When found, the machine was to send a sound to the attached telephone receiver. Despite attempts on July 26 and August 1, 1881, Bell could not situate the bullet.
Turns out the steel springs in Garfield's bed rendered it useless.  It's also unfortunate that his doctors weren't terribly familiar with the word "hygiene."  Someday we'll be able to joke about it.  But not today---after only 132 years, it's all still too raw.


Five years ago in C&J: September 19, 2008

CHEERS to the new kid in the Green Zone.  General David "Saint" Petraeus turned over the reins to General Ray Odierno this week in Iraq:

There are a number of unresolved issues: Upcoming provincial elections could shift the political balance in Iraq.  A plan for Iraq's Shiite government to take over the largely Sunni local security groups could cause sectarian rifts.  And the U.S. and Iraq are negotiating a security agreement that will determine their long-term relationship.
Said Odierno: "Yeah, yeah, whatever...where's my body armor?"  At least we know he understands priorities.

JEERS to the wrong author at the wrong time.  Lynn Cheney writing a book called, We the People: The Story of the U.S. Constitution is like a Fox writing a book called, The American Henhouse: An Architectural Tribute.  Please go away.


And just one more…

CHEERS to memories of great bellowings past.  I don't always remember to tune in to Olbermann at 11pm.  But when I do, I see Keith absolutely in his element.  He always was a sports guy, and he's taken to his new ESPN2 show like Paul Krugman to a balance sheet.  And as you can see by a simple Google search, he's making waves again with his athletics-themed Special Comments.  So I'm glad I stumbled on this oldie-but-goodie parody that still makes me laugh like a drunken hyena:

It's National Thursday Day!  (Maybe---I just made it up.)  Have an excellent one.  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?


Today's Shameless C&J Testimonial:

When I looked up at Bill in Portland Maine, I was taken aback: He had pink hair. A huge shock of neon pink hair---very Euro-punk from the ’90s. I thought to myself: “Wow, wouldn’t it be nice to be Bill in Portland Maine? Maybe even to sport some pink hair?”
---Thomas Friedman


What overall grade would you give oil and gas companies for their performance in cleaning up after well/pipeline disasters?

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