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Headlines You Won't Read This Week

Obama divides time between golf, memoirs after ouster by Operation American Spring

Climate scientists backtrack on Antarctica-melting claims after discovering misplaced decimal point

Newspaper press run
"Oh, the fingers
I've smushed..."
House select committee on Benghazi uncovers something new

FCC does the smart thing

Same-sex marriage causes something bad somewhere

Tea party goes ten minutes without claiming something is being shoved down their throats

No deaths reported due to negligent handling of firearms

Oil companies working feverishly to make industry safer

History judges former Treasury head Tim Geithner kindly

Speaker Boehner introduces jobs bill

Koch brother forced to choose between food and medicine

I can see the Memorial Day weekend from my house. 'Bout damn time. Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Monday, May 19, 2014

Note: Elizabeth Warren is on The Colbert Report tonight.  So no matter what, at least we know this particular Monday won’t be a complete washout.


11 days!!!
By the Numbers:
Days 'til National Hamburger Day: 9
Days 'til the Newport Beach Jazz Festival in California: 11
Increase in home construction from March to April, the highest gain in five months: 13%
(Source: Commerce Department)
Minimum number of Mainers who enrolled through Obamacare but would've qualified for Medicaid if our tea party governor had expanded it: 8,000
(Source: The Portland Press Herald)
Number of fires the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has responded to this year, versus a rolling average of 800 per year: 1,500
(Source: AP)
Amount the floundering Red Lobster chain was sold for last week: $2.1 billion
Current temperature of the ocean off the coast of southern Maine: 51


NEW!  Your Monday Michigan Moment

Brought to you by the 2014 Netroots Nation Convention in Detroit, July 17-20.  This may surprise you, but it's a fact that Detroit has food.  And the signature dish there, I hear tell, is the Coney dog, which started appearing in the early 1900s.  Says Katherine Yung, co-author of Coney Detroit:

Lafayette Coney Island and American Coney Island on West Lafayette Boulevard in Detroit Michigan.
Fierce rivals
side by side.
There's a particular Detroit style that revolves around bean-less chili. There's also a natural casing to the dog, it has that snap when you bite into it. Then it's covered with mustard and onions.

There are differences between vendors, and they can be quite noticeable. It all boils down to the chili. … People do have loyalties. There's an intense one between American Coney Island versus Lafayette Coney Island.

I'd like mine with candy corn, please.


Puppy Pic of the Day (graphic images alert): News anchor understatement of the day: "Ethan's a good guy."


CHEERS to making a joyfully righteous noise.  Having received fresh marching orders from billionaire Art Pope for their next session, the North Carolina legislature re-convenes today to continue its march back to the glorious antebellum days.  Also returning to be bees in the teabaggers' bonnets are Rev. William Barber and the Moral Monday protesters.  But instead of welcoming the dissent from ordinary citizens with legitimate concerns, Republicans have preemptively taken steps to silence them:

NAACP graphic for the May 19 Moral Monday rally in Raleigh, North Carolina
[A]ccording to the new rules unveiled by the commission, groups are no longer allowed to “disturb, or create an imminent disturbance” at the Legislative Building, and visitors may be asked to leave if they are found to be disturbing “the General Assembly, one of its houses, or its committees, members, or staff in the performance of their duties.”  Behaviors said to violate the rules include “singing, clapping, shouting, playing instruments or using sound amplification equipment."
Asked if they would fight the rule changes, organizers said, "You're darn tootin' we will!"  Moments later Republicans banned tootin'.

CHEERS to serving up legitimate beefs.  Speaking of protests, late last week the fast-food industry got another wake-up call when…

Graphic for May 15, 2014 fast food protests
The protests
got supersized.
…workers across the US walked off their jobs in more than 150 cities Thursday in the largest-ever strike to hit the industry, while across the world, workers protested in 33 countries on six continents at restaurants like McDonald’s, Burger King and KFC.  In all, the campaign for higher pay and rights on the job hit more than 230 cities worldwide.  

“Our movement is spreading to all corners of the country---and the world---and the time has come for fast-food companies to act,” said Cherri Delesline, 27, a mother of four, who works at a McDonald’s in Charleston, SC and makes $7.35 an hour. “It’s not OK for the industry to rake in huge profits, but pay us so little that we can’t support our families."

The workers say they're looking forward to shutting down fast-food stores again.  Almost as much as their customer's coronary arteries are.

JEERS to the Boy Wonder's bubbleheaded blunder.  On May 19, 1992, whiny-ass titty baby (oh, and vice president) Dan Quayle cited Murphy Brown as a poor example of family values.  Said Ken Tucker back then in Entertainment Weekly:

Murphy Brown/Dan Quayle pic
The idiot on the right lost.
Dan Quayle's spleen venting about the way Murphy Brown subverts family values is only the most direct expression to date of a notion that has gained in intensity over the past decade---that TV has some sort of obligation to present only ''positive'' examples of family life, that any portrayal of something other than the happy nuclear clan is detrimental to our American way of life.

But TV isn't an arm of social policy or government propaganda; it has no more responsibility to be upbeat and positive than do, say, poetry or the theater. ... Someone pour Quayle a glass of cold milk, please.

Isn't it nice to know that the Republican party has come so far in its thinking over the last two decades?  (You may commence smirking at will.)

JEERS to a sudden lurch to the right.  Over in India 551 million (not a typo) people voted to, essentially, throw the bums out and pick a leader from the other team.  Narendra Modi seems to possess the tech-savvy and populist characteristics of the Obama machine, the conservative trickle-down fervor of the Reagan machine, and a penchant for discrimination based on religion.  For now, though, after indicating their choice via a landslide of epic proportions that leaves no doubt about the voters' preference whatsoever, the Indian people are very happy.  But not nearly as happy as Rakesh the recount guy.

CHEERS to the courage not to fight.  On May 19, 1774, the first Shakers sailed to America from England.  During the Revolution they refused to fight and were jailed, making them our first conscientious objectors.  And you thought they just made nifty furniture.

CHEERS to rebooting a relic.  Do you remember your first computer?  I do.  Mainly because I keep it around, waiting for that call to come from the Smithsonian to display "Billy's Tandy" next to Edison's light bulb.  Yup, my first PC was a 1988 Tandy 1000 TL from Radio Shack, a War-on-Christmas present from me Ma and me Pa.  Maybe this ad gave 'em the idea:

1980s ad for the Tandy 1000 TL PC
Saturday I freed it from nearly 20 years of storage, wiped it down and fired it up.  It works like a charm.  And it wants to say something very special to you all: "Boop!"  That is, by the way, literally the only thing it knows how to say. Well, besides "Pull mah finger."


Five years ago in C&J: May 19, 2009

CHEERS to Bibi and Barack: together at last.  The leaders of Israel and the United States exchanged "Shaloms" and "Yo's" yesterday at the White House.  It was their first meeting, and it mostly consisted of singing a few stanzas of Getting to Know You.  And in another, less widely-reported first, Bo the dog humped his first foreign leader's leg.  He perfected his technique from watching old videos of Bush interacting with the Saudi royal family.


And just one more…

CHEERS to Victoria Day (Canada).  Once again, the bottom half of May rolls around and my wall calendar starts screaming at me, "Victoria Day (Canada)!  Victoria Day (Canada)!"  And every year I ignore it because, sorry Rob Ford, I just don’t consider Victoria Day (Canada) to be the equivalent of holiday crack.  But, whatever---this year I'll take a puff:

Victoria Day graphic w/ Queen Victory saying
...or else, eh.
Victoria Day celebrates Queen Victoria's birthday (May 24th). Canada is still a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, of which the Queen is head.  Victoria Day is always on a Monday; thus the holiday is part of a long weekend, which is commonly referred to as the Victoria Day Weekend, the May Long Weekend, the May Long, or the May Two-Four (a case of beer in some parts of Canada is called a "two-four" and many of these are consumed over the holiday).  The weekend is also called the May 24th weekend, although it does not necessarily fall on May 24th.  The Victoria Day Weekend is the first popular weekend for spring/summer travel.
Ahhhhh…now it makes sense why Senator Ted Cruz refuses to renounce his Canadian citizenship.  Between Victoria Day (Canada) and Memorial Day, he gets two holiday weeks in a row.  Hate to say it, but he's smarter than I thought.

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


Today's Shameless C&J Testimonial:

"Darling Bill in Portland Maine, you deserve a lovelier name and better wig."


Does your state issue marriage licenses to both straight and gay couples?

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