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Nine Weeks 'til Netroots Nation!

The biggest yearly loony lefty convention in America is only a couple months off, so here's a handy to-do list:

Register NOW for Netroots nation 2014
• Register here and book a hotel room here. You're on your own for transportation, but before you book through the airlines you might want to check out Elon Musk's SpaceX scratch 'n dent sale this weekend for great deals on experimental rocketry.

• Sign up to be a volunteer. My partner Michael and I do this every year for one selfish, ego-infested reason: it's a blast. The tasks (filling swag bags, helping at the registration booth, assembling name tags, etc.) are easy, you get to see how the nuts and bolts of a major convention go together, and there's no better way to meet new people and catch up with old friends. Volunteer coordinator Eric Thut adds:

We cannot do this without you. There are only 5 full-time staff dedicated to the conference and this only is possible through our fantastic volunteers. And trust me---it is fun too. If you are interested drop us an email at: volunteers[at]
• Sign up to join us at the now-legendary Daily Kos/Cheers & Jeers eat 'n greet on Wednesday evening (July 16) at Vicente's Cuban Cuisine. We gotta get a head count as soon as possible, so if you want to put your name on the list, let Navajo know via kosmail by clicking here.

• If you're a quilter or crafter, consider joining the Daily Kos Quilt Guild's VA Hospital nursing home support project that will deliver hand-made  quilts, hats and scarves. Drop a kosmail to either Winifred3 or SaraR.

Howard wants to see YOU!
• Add Howard Dean to the list of VIPs who will be there.

• Check out the just-announced panels and take note of the ones you want to attend.

• Follow NN14 via Twitter here.

• And last but not least, hose out your steamer trunks and add new potpourri satchels. As my grandma always told me right before she'd go off on one of her bank-robbing sprees: fresh-smelling luggage is happy luggage. Can't argue with that.

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

Cheers and Jeers for Thursday, May 15, 2014

Note: If you failed to look up at the full moon and wink at Neil Armstrong last night, we'll give you one more chance to do it tonight.  Fail again and we start shooting spitwads at your house from the space station.  ---Hugs, NASA

Dance Parade and Festival 2014 poster
2 days 'til boogie time!!!
By the Numbers:
Days 'til summer: 37
Days 'til the 8th annual Dance Parade and Festival in New York City: 2
Percent increase in the size of the big Wall Street banks since 2008: 38%
(Source: Sen. Elizabeth Warren)
Number of men for every 100 women in America: 97.6
Percent of Congress represented by men and women, respectively: 81%, 19%
(Source: ERA Action)
Percent of flights that were canceled between January and March (for mostly weather-related reasons), the highest since records started being kept 20 years ago: 4.6%
(Source: Dept. of Transportation)
Percent of Americans who believe that space aliens, time travelers or beings from another dimension took Malaysian Airlines flight MH370: 9%
(Source: CNN poll)


Your Thursday Molly Ivins Moment:

Molly ivins publicity photo  --- small
The conservatives have been preaching this Me First stuff as though life were a race to the finish and the only object is to pick up as much money as you can. It doesn't work---not even if you wind up with a lot of toys. As another noted economist said, we are becoming a nation of private opulence and public squalor.

Look, we all do better when we all do better. You raise the minimum wage, it works for everyone.
---May, 2006.


Puppy Pic of the Day: No sight?  No problem.


CHEERS to closure.  Yeah, I hate that word, but it seems appropriate today.  With Osama bin Laden dead and most of his lieutenants either dead or jailed, the shiny new World Trade Center building rising 1,776 feet like a middle finger salute to al Qaeda, and the "footprints" of the twin towers a lovely outdoor memorial, today the final task in the wake of the tragedy will be completed: the dedication by President Obama of the National September 11th Memorial Museum:

9/11 Museum entryway, NYC
The Entry Pavillion
The Museum’s 110,000 square feet of exhibition space is located within the archaeological heart of the World Trade Center site---telling the story of 9/11 through multimedia displays, archives, narratives and a collection of monumental and authentic artifacts. The lives of every victim of the 2001 and 1993 attacks will be commemorated as visitors have the opportunity to learn about the men, women, and children who died.

The monumental artifacts of the Museum provide a link to the events of 9/11, while presenting intimate stories of loss, compassion, reckoning, and recovery that are central to telling the story of the attacks and the aftermath.

You can see more pics of some of the artifacts in it here.  It opens to the public next Wednesday.  It was a bumpy ride to get it finished, but it looks like they did a thoughtful and respectful job.  Also today: Rush Limbaugh does an unthoughtful and disrespectful job exploiting the event by blaming 9/11 on Democrats.  Unfortunately, closure doesn't extend to his yap.

CHEERS to Jay Carney.  Yes this is, I believe, the first time I've mentioned the former boy wonder of ABC News who will go down as one of the most bland (by design, I presume) press secretaries ever.  But he did manage to fire off a pithy zinger at a Fox News stenographer during a press gaggle this week, regarding Karl Rove's insult of Hillary Clinton's cognitive abilities:


CHEERS to special deliveries.  On May 15, 1918, the first airmail route got started in the U.S.  It ran between Washington, Philadelphia and New York. They had to retool the operation when it became apparent that dangling a mailman from a rope was a really bad idea.  Especially in Briarpatch County.

Mike Michaud---a good guy who
will make a good Maine governor.
CHEERS to taking the lead.  Up here in Maine we've got a rather important governor's election in November, the goal being to sweep out the teabagger (Paul LePage) we let stumble into the job in 2010 with 39 percent of the vote.  Even though conditions are similar to last time, Congressman Mike Michaud---the Democrat---is leading by a smidge in most polling, and there seems to be a sense around here that the momentum will stay on his side, with independent Eliot Cutler seen as the 2010 spoiler and Gov. LePage seen as a policy and public relations embarrassment. And if you're keeping track of the race, here are a couple newsy nuggets: Michaud will be the grand marshal of the Portland Pride parade next month, and after endorsing no one in 2010, the State Troopers Association gave him the nod this year.  So two things we know: 1) he's got the LGBT vote locked up and 2) he'll never be late for a debate.

Who'da thunk it???
CHEERS to stepping out of the way.  Judicial cases centered around gay marriage have a predictable rhythm: the judge rules a state's ban on same-sex nuptials unconstitutional, but then "stays" the order until the case can wind its way through the appeals process.  But not this week!  Judges in Idaho and Arkansas, where marriage bans were declared null and void within the past week, kept the door open for marriage license approval.  Idaho couples can start tying the knot Friday barring any complications.  There is, however, a bit of a blip in Arkansas, where the circuit judge has to go back and clean up a little statute so clerks will have "official" clearance to proceed.  Oh, and also some good news from Oregon, where a judge dealt a death blow to the right-wing National Organization for Marriage (NOM)'s effort to prevent marriage equality there.  I wonder how they feel, knowing in their bigoted bones that they'll never win another case.  Probably terrible.  I hope.


Five years ago in C&J: May 15, 2009

JEERS to the death penalty.  Because---say it with me, for the thousandth time---it's NOT fool-proof:

A former death row inmate in Tennessee has been cleared of murder, three years after the Supreme Court raised repeated questions about his conviction. ... [Paul] House's appeal was championed by the Innocence Project, affiliated with the Cardozo School of Law in New York.  "In the three years since the U.S. Supreme Court stepped into this case and sent it back to the trial court, substantial additional DNA testing and further investigation have shown that he is innocent," said Peter Neufeld, the group's co-director.

The guy had been in prison for 22 years.  The state issued a brief note to Mr. House: "We extend our sincerest 'Oopsie.'"  Tossing in a few Denny's coupons was a nice touch.


And just one more…

CHEERS to announcing your true intentions.  The RNC, bless their hearts, put up a new graphic on twitter that was supposed to say something inspirational to their base.  But thanks to the new twitter format, the left and right part got cut off, so now all it says is "RNC Ate Your American Dream."  For your amusement, a screen shot:

Screen shot of RNC twitter home page with message
We'll file this under: "Republicans don’t get social media."  (But they're starting to really excel in using the telegraph, so points for that.)

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



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