August 2012 archive

Aug 31

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

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The Stars Hollow Gazette

Aug 31

Blue Moon Lights Tonight’s Sky

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Tonight’s Blue Moon is special since there will not be another until 2015.

Blue MoonThe moon will wax to its full phase at 9:58 a.m. EDT (1358 GMT) today, bringing August’s full moon count to two (the first one occurred Aug. 1). Two full moons won’t rise in a single month again until July 2015. [..]

Tonight’s blue moon also happens to fall on the day of late astronaut Neil Armstrong’s memorial service. Armstrong, who on July 20, 1969 became the first person to set foot on the moon, died Aug. 25 following complications from heart surgery.

So stargazers may want to keep Armstrong’s “one small step” in mind as they gaze up tonight.

“For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request,” Armstrong’s family wrote in a statement shortly after his death. “Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink.”

So if your sky’s are clear tonight, even if they’re not, go outside, reach up with your arms towards the moon and breath.

Aug 31

Cartnoon

#36 of the 50 greatest cartoons of all time and deservedly so.  Originally posted May 11, 2011.

Feed the Kitty

Aug 31

On This Day In History August 31

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour a cup of your favorite morning beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

August 31 is the 243rd day of the year (244th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 122 days remaining until the end of the year.

I am very hesitant to make the death of Princess Diana the prominent story of the day but her death was a tragedy on so many levels that it is not surprising that the world nearly stood still for 6 days until her funeral. There are many things that we remember exactly where we were and what we were doing when they happened, like 9/11 and, for those of us old enough, JFK’s assassination.

I was living in Paris then not far from the site of the accident. I had been out to dinner that evening with my then ex-husband, Dr. TMC, when we heard the crash, it was that loud, and shortly after the sirens of emergency vehicles. Not unusual in Paris, so, we continued on to our destinations. It wasn’t until very early that I heard that the Princess had died and where. Paris was stunned. The site became a instant memorial.

We all sat glued to the TV for days waiting for the Queen to say something. The Queen badly underestimated the admiration that was held her former daughter-in-law.  The day of her funeral Paris froze, the only time I have ever seen the city this quiet was on 9/11.

After being criticized for failing to satisfactorily match the grief of the British people, the royal family arranged for a state funeral to be held for Diana at Westminster Abbey on September 6. Diana’s coffin was taken from Kensington Palace to the Abbey on a horse-drawn gun carriage, and an estimated one million mourners lined the route. Diana’s sons, William, 15, and Harry, 12, joined their father, Prince Charles; grandfather Prince Philip; and uncle Charles, the Earl of Spencer, to walk the final stretch of the procession with the casket. The only sound was the clatter of the horses’ hooves and the peal of a church bell.

The service, watched by an estimated two billion people worldwide, sacrificed royal pomp for a more human touch. Workers associated with Diana’s various charities represented 500 of the 2,000 people invited to attend the funeral. Elton John, a friend of Diana, lent a popular touch to the ceremony when he sang “Candle in the Wind,” accompanying himself on piano. After the service, Diana’s body was taken by hearse to her family’s ancestral estate near Althorp, north of London. In a private ceremony, she was laid to rest on a tree-shaded island in a small lake, securely beyond the reach of the camera lens.

Since the death of Princess Diana, Althorp, which has been in the Spencer family for over 500 years, is now a popular tourist attraction that offers tours to the general public.

I still light a candle in her memory on this day.

Blessed Be.

Aug 31

Muse in the Morning

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Muse in the Morning


Wave

Aug 31

Purell

So why am I offended by a bottle of Purell.

Aug 31

the end of sanity: South African miners charged with murder

Just when you think the world can’t possibly get worse, it does.


270 miners charged in co-workers’ deaths

South African authorities have charged 270 miners with murder in the killings of 34 fellow workers, even though police are believed to have fired the fatal shots.

Whaaaaaat? Well, in fact, the South African authorities are using a sort of they made us do it defense. In an ugly throw-back to the Apartheid-era, the miners are being charged under the common purpose law:

“It’s the police who were shooting but they were under attack by the protesters, who were armed, so today the 270 accused are charged with the murders,” Frank Lesenyego, a spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority, told the Associated Press.

Daily News / 30 Aug 2012

Because of course, it’s always a good idea to blame the victim. This is unbelievably frightening… to now put this massacre at the feet of the miners is breathtaking. Really jaw-dropping insanity.

I mean WTF???????????

Watch out, because this is our world now and those in power (all of them) make it harder and harder for us to act on the truth as we are being buried in bullshit… being forced to accept lie after lie, no matter what we see, no matter what the facts may indicate. One can only wonder how long before police in Oakland or New York City adopt a similar strategy…

This video is amazing… look at it and bear witness; one never knows if it will disappear.

Aug 31

2012 Republican National Convention: Day 4

Well Ann Romney is still the best speaker overall with Huckabee clearly second and Rice and Ryan about tied.  Christie slides to 5th just ahead of Pawlenty.  Everyone else is reality show bad or worse.

Remember my points are given on presentation not substance so the fact that Ryan’s speech was such a comprehensive compendium of lies that even inoffensive little words like ‘a’, ‘and’, and ‘the’ were overwhelmed by the onslaught is immaterial to the score.

Of course tonight we have our special super secret guest speaker which rumors say will be Clint Eastwood.  I must say if true I consider this a mistake from 2 standpoints.  Firstly I’m not sure ‘Dirty Harry’ Callahan is sufficiently ardent for the Party at this particular stage and secondly he’ll make Romney look bad.  He’s already going to have competition enough from Jeb Bush who wouldn’t even be on the stage except for his institutional strength.

I think actually that will be the speech to watch tonight.  Jon is not kidding when he calls this a rehearsal for ’16 because no one with any brains (and I had to set the bar that low to include the Villager Idiots) thinks there is a path to electoral victory for Mitt.  What we have seen so far is the chaotic evil of the id raging anti-fairies (Fairly Odd Parents, I stand by my metaphor), Jeb is the face of the soul sucking pixies and they own this town.

There are reports that ratings are tanking and the enthusiasm among the delegates distinctly down.  Other factors are contributing (Isaac) and will no doubt be blamed by those looking for excuses, but what I’m feeling is a huge emotional black hole at the center of all of this and his name is Barack Obama.

Reagan was sunshiny optimism and hope on a hill.  He had goals, evil goals but still goals.  These guys have nothing but hate, resentment, and fear.  They won’t talk about their program for America because people justifiably don’t like it.  Huge majorities, even in their own party.

However Democrats are just as bad.  One of the reasons Paul Ryan is an evil hypocritical liar is that he voted against the Bowles/Simpson report.  We should be thanking him instead.

The politicians are afraid of democracy.  Since 2006 every election has been a “change” election and attrition has replaced many of the less firmly entrenched.  There is no reason not to expect this trend to continue until conditions improve.

I’ve been watching the action on CSPAN and I highly recommend it as complete and mercifully pundit free.

7:00 p.m.

  • Convention convenes
  • Call to order
  • Introduction of Colors US Central Command Joint Forces Color Guard Team
  • Pledge of Allegiance by Dylan Nonaka
  • National Anthem sung by SEVEN
  • Invocation by Ken and Priscilla Hutchins
  • Remarks by U.S. Rep. Connie Mack (FL)
  • Reagan Legacy Video
  • Remarks by Newt and Callista Gingrich
  • Remarks by Craig Romney

8:00 p.m.

  • Remarks by Governor former Jeb Bush (FL)
  • Remarks by Bob White, chairman of Romney for President campaign
  • Remarks by Grant Bennett
  • Remarks by Tom Stemberg

9:00 p.m.

  • Remarks by former Massachusetts Lt. Governor Kerry Healey
  • Remarks by Jane Edmonds, former Massachusetts Secretary of Workforce
  • Remarks by Olympians Michael Eruzione, Derek Parra and Kim Rhode

10:00 p.m.

  • Remarks by U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (FL)
  • Remarks by presidential nominee Mitt Romney
  • Benediction by Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan
  • Adjournment

Aug 30

Today on The Stars Hollow Gazette

Our regular featured content-

And these featured articles-

Tonight’s Special Feature-

Write more and often.  This is an Open Thread.

The Stars Hollow Gazette

Aug 30

Sharp As a Razor Blade

Searching high . . .

Tampa expected 15,000 protesters for the Republican National Convention. So far, the city has seen no more than “a couple thousand,” Tampa Police Chief Jane Castor told reporters this morning.  “There aren’t nearly the number of demonstrators we expected,” Castor said.  One reason could be Hurricane Isaac, which forced some bus companies to cancel planned charters of protesters into Tampa Bay..

Searching low . . .

How little impact are the protests at the Republican convention making?  Well, let’s put it this way, yesterday the Tampa chief of police cancelled a scheduled afternoon press conference because there wasn’t enough to report. The Examiner reported Monday that the crowds were sparse at the protests and they haven’t gotten any larger since then. Reportedly, the largest crowd at any protest was 300 people at one at Ybor City, which is about three miles from the convention center.

Searching everywhere they know . . .

There were several protests Wednesday, but none of them were what city officials had feared.  The largest was sponsored by Planned Parenthood at Julian Lane Park about a mile north of the Tampa Bay Times Forum.  It featured speeches and chants like ” Ho ho, hey hey, Planned Parenthood is here to stay.”

At midday, there was a protest at speech featuring former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.  During the speech when Rice was talking about the compassionate Bush administration, a Code Pink protester, former Army Colonel Ann Wright, stood up and said, “You can’t be compassionate and kill people!” However, no one was arrested and for the most part, everything has been extremely calm.

Asking the cops wherever they go . . .

Riot Control Police

Have you seen dignity?

Aug 30

Cartnoon

WW II vintage.  Originally posted May 10, 2011.

Daffy – The Commando

Aug 30

On This Day In History August 30

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

This is your morning Open Thread. Pour a cup of your favorite morning beverage and review the past and comment on the future.

Find the past “On This Day in History” here.

August 30 is the 242nd day of the year (243rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 123 days remaining until the end of the year.

On this day in 1967, Thurgood Marshall becomes the first African American to be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice. He would remain on the Supreme Court for 24 years before retiring for health reasons, leaving a legacy of upholding the rights of the individual as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.

Thurgood Marshall (July 2, 1908 – January 24, 1993) was an American jurist and the first African American to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. Before becoming a judge, he was a lawyer who was best remembered for his high success rate in arguing before the Supreme Court and for the victory in Brown v. Board of Education. He was nominated to the court by President Lyndon Johnson in 1967.

Marshall was born in Baltimore, Maryland on July 2, 1908, the great-grandson of a slave who was born in modern-day Democratic Republic of the Congo.His original name was Thoroughgood, but he shortened it to Thurgood  in second grade because he disliked spelling it. His father, William Marshall, who was a railroad porter, instilled in him an appreciation for the Constitution of the United States and the rule of law.

Marshall graduated from Frederick Douglass High School in Baltimore in 1925 and from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania in 1930. Afterward, Marshall wanted to apply to his hometown law school, the University of Maryland School of Law, but the dean told him that he would not be accepted because of the school’s segregation policy. Later, as a civil rights litigator, he successfully sued the school for this policy in the case of Murray v. Pearson. As he could not attend the University of Maryland, Marshall sought admission and was accepted at Howard University School of Law.

Marshall received his law degree from the Howard University School of Law in 1933 where he graduated first in his class.

Marshall won his very first U.S. Supreme Court case, Chambers v. Florida, 309 U.S. 227 (1940), at the age of 32. That same year, he was appointed Chief Counsel for the NAACP. He argued many other cases before the Supreme Court, most of them successfully, including Smith v. Allwright, 321 U.S. 649 (1944); Shelley v. Kraemer, 334 U.S. 1 (1948); Sweatt v. Painter, 339 U.S. 629 (1950); and McLaurin v. Oklahoma State Regents, 339 U.S. 637 (1950). His most famous case as a lawyer was Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 347 U.S. 483 (1954), the case in which the Supreme Court ruled that “separate but equal” public education, as established by Plessy v. Ferguson, was not applicable to public education because it could never be truly equal. In total, Marshall won 29 out of the 32 cases he argued before the Supreme Court.

Marshall served on the Court for the next twenty-four years, compiling a liberal record that included strong support for Constitutional protection of individual rights, especially the rights of criminal suspects against the government. His most frequent ally on the Court (indeed, the pair rarely voted at odds) was Justice William Brennan, who consistently joined him in supporting abortion rights and opposing the death penalty. Brennan and Marshall concluded in Furman v. Georgia that the death penalty was, in all circumstances, unconstitutional, and never accepted the legitimacy of Gregg v. Georgia, which ruled four years later that the death penalty was constitutional in some circumstances. Thereafter, Brennan or Marshall dissented from every denial of certiorari in a capital case and from every decision upholding a sentence of death.[citation needed] In 1987, Marshall gave a controversial speech on the occasion of the bicentennial celebrations of the Constitution of the United States. Marshall stated,

   

“the government they devised was defective from the start, requiring several amendments, a civil war, and major social transformations to attain the system of constitutional government and its respect for the freedoms and individual rights, we hold as fundamental today.”

In conclusion Marshall stated

   

“Some may more quietly commemorate the suffering, struggle, and sacrifice that has triumphed over much of what was wrong with the original document, and observe the anniversary with hopes not realized and promises not fulfilled. I plan to celebrate the bicentennial of the Constitution as a living document, including the Bill of Rights and the other amendments protecting individual freedoms and human rights.”

He retired from the Supreme Court in 1991, and was reportedly unhappy that it would fall to President George H. W. Bush to name his replacement. Bush nominated Clarence Thomas to replace Marshall.

Marshall died of heart failure at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, at 2:58 p.m. on January 24, 1993 at the age of 84. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. His second wife and their two sons survived him

On November 30, 1993, Justice Marshall was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Bill Clinton.

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