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    • The Lack of Belief In Good
      Are humans good, bad or neutral? It’s an old philosophical debate, and not just in the West. Confucius thought they were born neutral, for example, while the later Confucian Mencius felt they were good, noting that everyone who saw a child fall into a well would be horrified. Others, including many Confucians and the Christian church, with original sin, have […]
  • Top Posts

Wintry Wednesday Wake-up


In military time it is “zero-dark-thirty” and it’s freakin’cold too. The bad news is there is no good news:

Obama team more closely linking al Qaeda to terror attempt

In a marked shift from previous positions, senior Obama administration officials now say they are starting to see an al Qaeda connection to the attempted terror attack on a U.S.-bound airliner.

(No shit, Sherlock? Al Queda already claimed credit!)


Majority Of Tea Party Group’s Spending Went To GOP Firm That Created It

The political action committee behind the Tea Party Express (TPE) — which already has been slammed as inauthentic and corporate-controlled by rival factions in the Tea Party movement — directed almost two thirds of its spending during a recent reporting period back to the Republican consulting firm that created the PAC in the first place.


Radanovich To Retire

Rep. George Radanovich (R-CA) will announce he will not seek a 9th term in a statement to be released this afternoon, 2 GOP sources confirms to Hotline OnCall.

First elected in ’94 when he beat then-Rep. Richard Lehman (D), Radanovich moved to a senior position on the Energy & Commerce Committee, where he is the top GOPer on the Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection subcommittee.

Radanovich never faced a serious Dem challenger after beating Lehman with 57% in ’94. But he may have faced a strong GOPer this year, thanks to opponents unhappy with his stance on water issues, a critical concern in the oft-parched Central Valley.

One source said Radanovich will back state Sen. Jeff Denham (R) as his replacement. CA Senate districts are actually larger than congressional districts, though Denham’s is more closely related to Rep. Dennis Cardoza’s (D) neighboring 18th district. Top GOPers had tried to convince Denham to run against Cardoza, though Radanovich’s district has a stronger GOP lean.

Oh goody! Maybe we can elect another blue dog Democrat to replace him!! (Cardoza is my #*&%$$# blue dog Congressman.)


Joy Behar: Sarah Palin’s ‘Base Doesn’t Even Read’
(They still vote though.)


US President Barack Obama dramatically dashes home during golf game hours after pledging to catch plotters of failed Christmas Day bombing

President Barack Obama dramatically broke off a round of golf today and rushed back to his rented vacation home followed by an ambulance with lights flashing.

However, fears something may have happened to First Lady Michelle Obama or daughters Malia and Sasha were laid to rest less than an hour later as it emerged that all the fuss was about a friend of the president’s, who suffered minor injuries.

“The First Family is fine,” White House spokesman Bill Burton said, without providing the identity of the friend whose injury had forced Obama to suddenly abandon his golf game and race back in the presidential motorcade at high speed.

An administration official said the child of one of Obama’s golfing partners had been hurt in a “run of the mill beach injury” but did not require stitches.

(Obama went back later to finish the game)


S.F.’s vanishing sea lions baffles experts

Hundreds of sea lions that have rested, scuffled and provided hours of blubbery, barking entertainment for two decades at San Francisco’s Pier 39 have disappeared – and biologists have no idea why.


Judge denies Bristol Palin’s request to keep custody fight private
(Andy Sullivan has “happy pants.”)


Charlie Sheen tried to kill me, says wife

Arrest warrant affidavit quotes Brook Mueller claiming he straddled her and put knife to her throat


Well, that’s it for this morning. What? Don’t blame me, I told you there is no good news.

119 Responses

  1. Okay, I lied. Here’s some good news:

    Outback Steakhouse has agreed to pay $19 million to settle a major class lawsuit alleging sexual discrimination at its hundreds of corporate-owned restaurants nationwide, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced Tuesday.

    According to the EEOC, Outback discriminated against thousands of female employees by not promoting them to higher-level profit-sharing management positions and denying them favorable job assignments that would help them be considered for top positions.

    (h/t Egalia at TGW)

  2. Massive divot:

    • looks like bush part 3 . mabey we should call him O-bush or something

    • I want to know who told him not to put on a tie. Talking terror with no tie just doesn’t do it, without the formal look.

      • I agree – that really bothered me. Pack a tie already and at least try to look presidential.

    • ABC News says he went swimming. Busy busy.

      @yunjid: post-statement, POTUS swims. Obamas are at Hanauma Bay. Nature preserve is closed Tuesdays to help preserve reef/fish habitat.

      • Was he wearing his golf shorts behind the podium? I’m gonna take a wild guess and say he only put on the suit to give that statement, so why didn’t he put on a tie too?

        “Wear a jacket but no tie – it projects the image of working late.”

    • Michelle Cottle:

      Bunker Mentality
      Barack Obama’s dangerous obsession with golf.

      • I used to have an obsession with bowling. Like golf it can become addictive because it is a game of tiny incremental changes to improve your score. I think fly fishing is also like that. When I was obsessed with bowling I had two different balls to use for different shots. I have two pairs of shoes, wrist guards etc…. I loved it, wasn’t terrible good at it but I would run out during school hours and bowl by myself for several hours before picking up the kids.

        But I was not POTUS at the time and I was in my late 20s and early 30s. Obama needs to grow up.

  3. Remember when the Dixie Chicks criticized Bush? Republican Ted Nugent:

    “I think that Barack Hussein Obama should be put in jail. It is clear that Barack Hussein Obama is a communist. Mao Tse Tung lives and his name is Barack Hussein Obama. This country should be ashamed. I wanna throw up.”

  4. Myiq2xu,

    Please tell Spammy to release me.

  5. Hey, that foxy dog in the picture speaks for my dog!
    Oh, the inhumanity!Jr.jr is held to higher standards that W was!
    http://edgeoforever.wordpress.com/2009/12/30/whaaa-being-jr-jr-is-hard-work/

  6. That ambulance trip is a hoot. Kid skins knee at beach; the bestest president ever in the most up-to-date high tech country ever gets confusing message about what happened and cuts game sirens blaring. Are these guys the same ones who are in charge of our national security and saving us from undie bombers?

  7. We need to have a congressional committee (or 3 or 4 committees) investigate all this undie bombing and reach bi-partisan consensus that the solution is to ban underwear on all flights. And/or require us to take off our underwear as we go through the security lines. We could stuff our panties and/or boxers in our shoes.

    • When I went through security on December 27th at LAX, I had to have ta pat down due to my pacemaker, and one of the things she did was inspect my pants waistband by flipping it so that she could see if it had been tampered with. She was also very firm in patting down the derriere area. Yay. What I have to look forward to from now on.

  8. I really feel sorry for Bristol Palin. She must look back on her teen-age affair with that total jerk and think it was an evil curse. She is lucky that she seems to have a father who is a good role model so at least she knows that behavior is not necessarily the male condition.

    • She is lucky enough to have a family that loves her and her child and stand behind her.
      She seems to have learned that there are consequences for actions taken and will go on to be a good mom and have a decent life.
      The jerk still has not learned that lesson and it will be painful for him when he does.

      WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE,MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

      PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

      • to be fair to him. If the mom is any indication, he wasn’t fortunate enough to get the same kind of support network Bristol was growing up. He’s still young. He may end up maturing later on. Let’s hope so for his kiddos sake.

  9. I am at work and can not link.
    NRO has an article by Victor Davis Hanson about the year of obama. All I can say is wow he is saying what most of us feel and see.

    Also Pete Stark is under house ethics investigation

    WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE,MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

    PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

  10. It’s 10 degrees here in the frozen Northeast. I’m wearing three layers indoors, and I don’t plan to leave the house until it gets up to at least 25 degrees.

    • Hi BB! I feel the same way here in the midwest. It’s 32 degrees here but we’ve had our 5th or 6th snow storm in a week — it’s FROZEN out there!

      • It’s currently 46 degrees outside, but it is supposed to go up to 56 degrees if and when the sun is up.

        IOW – a real weenie-shrinker.

        • When I was a kid (just north of SF) we got out the winter coats when it got down to 60º . . . and our house didn’t have a furnace. When we moved to Kansas all my albums melted because I didn’t realize what that grate in the wall was for!

    • We’re about to get your weather, bb. Today is our last day in the 20s, to be followed by 4 days with a high of 17. As long as it doesn’t snow I’ll be happy.

      • Yes, thank goodness we didn’t get the 6 inches of snow we were promised yesterday. The sun is out at least.

      • It’s supercold here too. I had to cart all of the cardboard out to the curb for pick up yesterday and my face and eyes hurt from the dry, freezing wind. It’s sunny outside today. That’s a plus. But it’s still cold as hell.

    • Snow and cold in Reno area too. Working from home…

  11. I read the article at Huff Po on moving your money. What do you think of this idea? It reminds me of the dialogue we had the other day about how you would orchestrate a bank run on the 4 behemouths of banking but maybe more organized and doable. I am thinking it might be a good possibility but would be interested in how Daki thinks and others who know more about this than I ever will.

    • A massive move to credit unions and smaller regional banks sounds like a good idea. I would like to know how much it would hurt them though.

    • The sooner we move away from 401Ks, the better off American workers will be. Right now, we’re participating in our own destruction.

      • Right on. It’s basically become the equivalent of basing your retirement on a lottery scratcher ticket.

  12. Remember when 0bama declared war on FOX News?

    Fox News has record ratings year

  13. CNN says Obama is polling 43% in the West. 😯
    Hopie Changie is wearing thin with all the broken promises.

    PUT THE PUBLIC OPTION BACK, and 55-62 Medicare Buy In BACK in Health Care Reform or risk going below 40%.

  14. More words, just words–

    From the Boston Globe:

    President Obama late today announced he had signed an executive order to expand access to classified government documents.

    “I expect that the order will produce measurable progress towards greater openness and transparency in the government’s classification and declassification programs while protecting the government’s legitimate interests,” Obama said in a statement.

    The order expands public access to declassified records and limits the ability of government officials to classify information “Top Secret” or “Confidential.” The full order is below.

    The Justice Department on Sept. 23 announced steps to make it more difficult for the government to claim it must withhold state secrets to protect national security.

    Despite the order, Obama will still keep under wraps millions of pages of military and intelligence documents that were scheduled to be declassified by the end of the year until the end of 2013.

  15. Help! Help! I’m hooked on Wii. I played Ski and Snowboard for about 5 hours yesterday with an occasional golf, tennis and bowling game. It got so bad that the console asked me if maybe I should take a break. How do I stop???

  16. Oh, and Joy Behar is an idiot. People like her are going to galvanize support around Palin.

    • Just wait until she finds out how many Palin fans watch the view…she should ask Oprah. I don’t watch either, but they sure seem to go out of their way to insult folks.

      Dolly Parton said, that the smartest man she met was her father and he couldn’t read and Dolly now has a program that helps folks learn to read in the USA! Joy Behar is insensitive and hasn’t got a heart.

      • I can’t stand The View. It’s like all of the stereotypes you can think of about women and intelligence all rolled into one slick, caffiene scented package. Horrible show. Complete waste of time.
        No wonder there are so many badly informed Americans out there. If Joy Behar is slamming Palin people, she really is insulting her own base. Behar practically promotes illiteracy.

    • Joy Behar is the obot poster child. Her shameless inanity is epic.

    • Joy Behar and all the rest on the view should take the advice from this web page, “How to Stop Being a Condescending Person

      Particularly, Steps #2 & #3″:

      2. Stop assuming that you know more than the other person. This is not necessarily the case. As a whole, we know a great deal. As separate entities, while we may be expert in one small part of our field/hobby/profession/passion, we don’t know it all and we have a great deal to teach and learn from each another. Instead, treat each encounter with a person as an opportunity to learn more, to expand your own knowledge and to gain an ally.

      3. Be compassionate, not condescending. Condescension might serve to keep you apart from others but it can also leave you lonely, ousted, an outsider, which in its own vicious way, only serves to make you feel less secure and therefore internalizes the need to remain condescending. Try compassion instead; see others for all the struggles, triumphs, achievements, doubts, fragility, and strengths that they are really made of. We are all in positions of unique perspective. Every person you see is a wealth of information and ideas that you haven’t come across. Learn how to approach people looking to find the hidden gem in them. Look for that unique thing in them that makes them special. You will find that you don’t have to fake it.

  17. A bit of good news:

    Federal court restricts taser use by police:
    http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-taser30-2009dec30,0,3444530.story?track=rss

    • Reminds me of a joke I got :::::

      ONLY A MAN WOULD ATTEMPT THIS

      Just try reading this without laughing till you cry!!!

      Pocket Taser Stun Gun, a great gift for the wife. A guy who purchased his lovely wife a pocket Taser for their anniversary submitted this:

      Last weekend I saw something at Larry’s Pistol &Pawn Shop that sparked my interest. The occasion was our 15th anniversary and I was looking for a little something extra for my wife Julie. What I came across was a 100,000-volt, pocket/purse- sized taser. The effects of the taser were supposed to be short lived, with no long-term adverse affect on your assailant, allowing her adequate time to retreat to safety….??

      WAY TOO COOL! Long story short, I bought the device and brought it home. I loaded two AAA batteries in the darn thing and pushed the button. Nothing! I was disappointed. I learned, however, that if I pushed the button and pressed it against a metal surface at the same time; I’d get the blue arc of electricity darting back and forth between the prongs.
      AWESOME!!!

      Unfortunately, I have yet to explain to Julie what that burn spot is on the face of her microwave.

      Okay, so I was home alone with this new toy, thinking to myself that it couldn’t be all that bad with only two triple-A batteries, right? There I sat in my recliner, my cat Gracie looking on intently (trusting little soul) while I was reading the directions and thinking that I really needed to try this thing out on a flesh &blood moving target. I must admit I thought about zapping Gracie (for a fraction of a second) and thought better of it. She is such a sweet cat. But, if I was going to give this thing to my wife to protect herself against a mugger, I did want some assurance that it would work as advertised. Am I wrong?
      So, there I sat in a pair of shorts and a tank top with my reading glasses perched delicately on the bridge of my nose, directions in one hand, and taser in another. The directions said that a one-second burst would shock and disorient your assailant; a two-second burst was supposed to cause muscle spasms and a major loss of bodily control; a three-second burst would purportedly make your assailant flop on the ground like a fish out of water. Any burst longer than three seconds would be wasting the

      batteries.

      All the while I’m looking at this little device measuring about 5″ long, less than 3/4 inch in circumference; pretty cute really and (loaded with two itsy, bitsy triple-A batteries) thinking to myself, ‘no possible way!’ What happened next is almost beyond description, but I’ll do my best…?

      I’m sitting there alone, Gracie looking on with her head cocked to one side as to say, ‘don’t do it dipshit,’ reasoning that a one second burst from such a tiny little ole thing couldn’t hurt all that bad. I decided to give myself a one second burst just for heck of it. I touched the prongs to my naked thigh, pushed the button, and . .

      HOLY MOTHER OF GOD . . WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION . . . WHAT THE HELL!!!

      I’m pretty sure Jessie Ventura ran in through the side door, picked me up in the recliner, then body slammed us both on the carpet, over and over and over again. I vaguely recall waking up on my side in the fetal position, with tears in my eyes, body soaking wet, both nipples on fire, testicles nowhere to be found, with my left arm tucked under my body in the oddest position, and tingling in my legs? The cat was making meowing sounds I had never heard before, clinging to a picture frame hanging above the fireplace, obviously in an attempt to avoid getting slammed by my body flopping all over the living room.

      Note: If you ever feel compelled to ‘mug’ yourself with a taser, one note of caution: there is no such thing as a one second burst when you zap yourself! You will not let go of that thing until it is dislodged from your hand by a violent thrashing about on the floor.. A three second burst would be considered conservative?

      IT HURT LIKE HELL!!!

      A minute or so later (I can’t be sure, as time was a relative thing at that point), I collected my wits (what little I had left), sat up and surveyed the landscape. My bent reading glasses were on the mantel of the fireplace. The recliner was upside down and about 8 feet or so from where it originally was. My triceps, right thigh and both nipples were still twitching. My face felt like it had been shot up with Novocain, and my bottom lip weighed 88 lbs. I had no control over the drooling.
      Apparently I pooped on myself, but was too numb to know for sure and my sense of smell was gone. I saw a faint smoke cloud above my head which I believe came from my hair. I’m still looking for my nuts and I’m offering a significant reward for their safe return!

      P.S… My wife, can’t stop laughing about my experience, loved the gift, and now regularly threatens me with it!

      If you think education is difficult, try being stupid !!!

      • That was just toooooo funny…cried laughing! Very good nerative A+++. 😆

      • Thank you for such a wonderful story. I almost wet myself just reading it. The things we do to ourselves. Mine was just testing a dogs shock collar and that was bad enough.

    • Can someone remove me from Spam – it was just a hilarious email joke

  18. Once in a…

    Blue moon to occur on new years eve:
    http://www.space.com/spacewatch/091230-blue-moon-eclipse.html

  19. James Howard Kunstler (via Yves Smith via Corrente):

    The great muddlement out there, this inability to form a coherent consensus about what’s happening, is especially frightening when, as is the case today, even the intelligent elites appear clueless or patently dishonest, in any case unreliable, in their relations with reality. President Obama, for instance – a charming, articulate man, with a winning smile, pectorals like Kansas City strip steaks, and a mandate for “change” – who speaks incessantly and implausibly of “the recovery” when all the economic vital signs tell a different story except for some obviously manipulated stock market indexes. You hear this enough times and you can’t help but regard it as lying, and even if it is lying ostensibly for the good of the nation, it is still lying about what is actually going on and does much harm to the project of building a coherent consensus. I submit that we would benefit more if we acknowledged what is really happening to us because only that will allow us to respond intelligently. What prior state does Mr. Obama suppose we’re recovering to? A Potemkin housing boom and an endless credit card spending orgy? The lying spreads downward from the White House and broadly across the fruited plain and the corporate office landscape and through the campuses and the editorial floors and the suites of absolutely everyone in charge of everything until all leadership in every field of endeavor has been given permission to speak untruth and to reinforce each others lies and illusions.

    How dysfunctional is our nation? These days, we lie to ourselves perhaps as badly the Soviets did, and in a worse way, because where information is concerned we really are a freer people than they were, so our failure is far less excusable, far more disgraceful. That you are reading this blog is proof that we still enjoy free speech in this country, whatever state of captivity or foolishness the so-called “mainstream media” may be in. By submitting to lies and illusions, therefore, we are discrediting the idea that freedom of speech and action has any value. How dangerous is that?

    IOW – we are so f**ked.

    • Nicely said.

    • “..pectorals like Kansas City strip steaks??”

      jesus christ.
      going to stop right there.

    • Kunstler’s CDS was so extreme before the election I stopped reading him. I guess his admiration for President Obama’s pecs explains his support for Obama in the 2008 election. Nothing Kunstler said about his support at the time made sense.

      djmm

      • I got the vibe he was a woman-hater from just skimming the link. I dunno, it seems to seep from the CDS bloggers (and the “C” don’t stand just for Clinton imho). He may not like vaginas but he appears to like moobs.

  20. What a match-up! America’s new most-admired women — Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton

    A Democrat and a Republican. A former senator and a former governor. Two polarizing politicians, both moms, both bestselling authors, both who lost their bids for one of the nation’s top elected offices last year.

    Are American voters dropping a hint here?

    Not that public admiration necessarily translates to votes. But the results have to set off any political spectator’s eager imagination about a future presidential ballot match-up between the pair who, though politically polar opposites, are both outspoken, both often underestimated and both beloved by their respective bases.

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2009/12/sarah-palin-hillary-clinton-gallup.html

  21. From the Houston Chronicle:

    A leader of a Houston Islamic educational institution said Tuesday that the organization is investigating a report that the Nigerian man accused of trying to bomb an airliner on Christmas Day attended classes here last year.

    Shaykh Waleed Basyouni, vice president for the AlMaghrib Institute in Houston and imam of the Clear Lake Islamic Center, said he has asked staffers to look into a report that 23-year-old Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab had attended classes in Houston during a trip to the U.S.

  22. Update from the Merced Sun-stroke:

    Radanovich, 54, said in a news release that he is stepping down from the 19th Congressional District seat to be with his wife, Ethie, as she continues to battle ovarian cancer.

    “My family needs me, and I intend to be by their side to win this battle,” he said.

  23. Eve Ensler in HuffPo:

    These horrific acts and thousands more happened in the four months since Secretary Clinton promised action and money, the UN promised protection and claimed it delivered it, and the international community approved their plan. All this happened under the watch of an American President, a Nobel Peace Prize Winner, who has yet to make the destruction of the female species of the Congo anything more than a one-line reference in a speech. As this femicide is spreading to other countries and will continue to spread if he does not make this a front and center issue. In the months where the minerals of the Congo continue to be exploited by the world, where the surrounding countries of Rwanda, Uganda and Burundi have yet to be held accountable for waging a regional war in the Congo for those minerals.

  24. Strong words and emotion from Shelby Steele.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704254604574614540488450188.html

    • I think that Mr. Obama is not just inexperienced; he is also hampered by a distinct inner emptiness—not an emptiness that comes from stupidity or a lack of ability but an emptiness that has been actually nurtured and developed as an adaptation to the political world.

      […]

      Mr. Obama’s ascendancy to the presidency could not have been more different. There seems to have been very little individuation, no real argument with conventional wisdom, and no willingness to jeopardize popularity for principle. To the contrary, he has come forward in American politics by emptying himself of strong convictions, by rejecting principled stands as “ideological,” and by promising to deliver us from the “tired” culture-war debates of the past. He aspires to be “post-ideological,” “post-racial” and “post-partisan,” which is to say that he defines himself by a series of “nots”—thus implying that being nothing is better than being something. He tries to make a politics out of emptiness itself.

    • Yes TW, it’s certainly well crafted – and crafty.

  25. What about trials, guilt, innocence, due process, etc.?

    Feinstein: Halt transfers to Yemen

    The senior Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee wants no more Guantanamo Bay detainees released to Yemen in the wake of a Christmas Day terrorist attack hatched in that country.

    “Guantanamo detainees should not be released to Yemen at this time,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said in a statement. “It is too unstable.”

    • That only applies if you’re a member of the minority party. Otherwise, you brustle and hiss just like the Republicans.

      It’s right there, in Democrats for Dummies.

    • She worked hard get to that committee. She is right.

      As for the “trials, guilt, innocence, due process, etc.” We are apparently awaiting the ACLU and others to fix those trifles down the road. Which they won’t do, if we can’t send them a little money. Last year they lost a big chunk of donations because the Madoff scandal ate up investors money. This year they lost another HUGE donor.

      http://www.aclu.org/

  26. I must have pissed off the powers that be.

    Buh bye!

  27. Department of Really Lame Defenses:

    Bush Waited Six Days To Discuss Shoe Bomber With No GOP Complaints

  28. BTD linked to Dakinikat’s post on Glass-Steagall.

    So did Boo-hooman

  29. Via Corrente:

    • Lambert:

      This sequence looks odd too: (1) Joe Lieberman starts talking up Yemen, and, my golly, only days later (2) an alleged terrorist turns out to be from that very country, Yemen. By this time, we know the drill.

  30. What on Earth?! Russia may send spaceship to knock threatening asteroid off course
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1239424/Russia-send-spaceship-knock-asteroid-Earth-threatening-path.html

    The Russians are going to save Earth…who woulda thunk it!

  31. Knighthood for Patrick Stewart? Queen says make it so
    A man that is truly deserving of the honor for all his work to end Domestic Violence and break the silence.
    Patrick Stewart talks about domestic violence

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