Monday, April 22, 2013

"Do U-Turn Believe in Miracles?!"

Famed NBC sportscaster Al Michaels' was arrested on drunk-driving allegations after making a U-turn next to a DUI sobriety checkpoint, officials said.

A longtime announcer on NBC's "Sunday Night Football," Michaels was arrested about 10 p.m. Friday in Santa Monica, booked into jail and released on his own recognizance early Saturday.

Michaels is scheduled to appear in L.A. Municipal Court at 8:30 a.m. June 26.
Do you believe...!!!!  (Video.)

Two Shots: On the Veranda; From the Veranda

On the veranda:

From the veranda:

Note: The black and brown things in the first photo are shark eggs.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Glenn Beck Still Pushing Saudi as Boston Bomber

Beck has actually given the U.S. government until Monday to "come clean." "I don't bluff," he says.

People actually listen to and shape their lives around this guy. So hard to comprehend.

More here.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Missing Ive League Student Sunil Tripathi and Boston Events

Update III: And a body found in Providence Harbor has been identified as Sunil Tripathi. Just tragic.

Update II: A message from Sunil's family:
A tremendous and painful amount of attention has been cast on our beloved Sunil Tripathi in the past twelve hours.
We have known unequivocally all along that neither individual suspected as responsible for the Boston Marathon bombings was Sunil.
We are grateful to all of you who have followed us on Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit—supporting us over the recent hours.
Now more than ever our greatest strength comes from your enduring support. We thank all of you who have reached out to our family and ask that you continue to raise awareness and to help us find our gentle, loving, and thoughtful Sunil. 

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Kermit Gosnell is to Abortion as Cecil B. Jacobson is to Fertility Treatments

Abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell - who is accused of truly horrific crimes allegedly committed at his abortion clinic - is on trial:
(CBS/AP) PHILADELPHIA - An unlicensed doctor fled out the back of an unorthodox medical clinic the night the FBI raided the facility in 2010, a witness testified Thursday at a murder trial centered on the location.

Abortion provider Kermit Gosnell, 72, is charged with killing a 41-year-old female patient and seven babies allegedly born alive, and with performing illegal, late-term abortions at his thriving inner-city clinic. Co-defendant Eileen O'Neill, 56, of Phoenixville, is charged with billing as a doctor and participating in a corrupt organization.

Eight former employees have pleaded guilty, some to third-degree murder, and have testified this month about bizarre, often-chaotic practices at the clinic.
The Kermit Gosnell story is almost too ugly for words, and it is, not surprisingly, being used by anti-abortion forces as an argument against abortion. But it is not about the rightness or wrongness of abortion - it is about Kermit Gosnell.

Just like Cecil B. Jacobson's story is not about the rightness or wrongess of fertility treatments - it is about  Cecil B. Jacobson:
A Federal jury today convicted an infertility specialist on 52 counts of fraud and perjury for artificially inseminating unwitting patients with his own sperm and for telling them they were pregnant when they were not.
The doctor, Cecil B. Jacobson, who could be sentenced to up to 280 years in prison and fined up to $500,000, sat impassively with his arms crossed when the jury foreman read the guilty verdicts. Sentencing was set for May 8.
After the trial, jurors said that DNA tests indicating that the doctor had fathered 15 children for his patients had convinced them that he lied about the source of the sperm. The prosecutors charged that Dr. Jacobson may have fathered as many as 75 children.
There are horrible people in the world, and some of them are doctors. It doesn't make what they practice wrong - it makes them wrong.

And as is pointed out at Salon - anti-abortion forces are trying to make access to medically safe abortions illegal. That is inarguably the core of their cause. So using Kermit Gosnell's story as an anti-abortion story is ironic in an unintentionally very ugly way.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Shop That Sold Newtown Guns: "Over 500 Violations"

Imagine being one of the parents of one of those 20 shot and killed children—and reading this:
The document states the agency inspected and found violations at Riverview in 2007, 2009, and 2011.

During the one in 2011, "the licensee committed over 500 violations," ATF documents stated.

I'm So Dumb I...

I'm so dumb I thought the Million Mom March was kind of a big celebration of the previous June.

• This has been another edition of "I'm So Dumb I..." You are welcome.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Rocky Mountain H...

Go. Giants.

Brad Paisley and LL Cool J Explain "Accidental Racist"

Oy to the friggin' weh.

LL Cool J, on the wearing of a Confederatre flag t-shirt:
“(S)ometimes I put a skull and crossbones on and, you know, my wife gets upset with me, but I’m not a pirate.”
There's more. Unfortunately.


Here's Ta-Nehisi Coates on this.

And please don't forget my "Live-blogging Listending to "Accidental Racist" Over and Over."

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

This Post Will Self Destruct in, Well, a While

Regarding this...this:

Update: Cheers, J. Cole!

Update 2: So terrible.

Only "Sodomized" "Religious" "Virgins" Should be Able to Have Abortions

I've just read this (it's a bit over a month old), and have not been able to fully absorb it yet:
During a segment about South Dakota’s bill to ban most abortions, which offers no exceptions for cases of rape or incest unless the pregnant woman’s life is in danger, state Sen. Bill Napoli (R) was asked if he could conceive of a scenario in which the exception might be invoked.
Indeed he could. “A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged,” he said. “The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.”
The depth of hatred for women in that statement is almost impossible to grasp.


Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Live-blogging Listening to "Accidental Racist" Over and Over

2:42 PM: Holy crap - the video has been pulled from YouTube. (Even Rolling Stone's is "removed by user." -Wednesday: It's been replaced.) See how long this one lasts. (And it's gone. Here's another, from Rolling Stone.)

And how much you wanna bet they're trying ferociously to un-release the album?


9:00 AM: "A proud rebel son, with an old can of worms..."

This song just gave my brain herpes.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Newtown Families: 60 Minutes

A whole new meaning for "must see TV":

25-year-old American Anne Smedinghoff Killed in Afghanistan

Just so tragic:
He said his daughter relished the opportunity to work directly with the Afghan people and that she volunteered to go to Kabul because she felt there was "a lot of good she could do there."
This weekend, the 25-year-old was trying to do just that -- delivering books to a school in southern Afghanistan -- when a suicide bomber smashed into her convoy Saturday. She is believed to be the first U.S. diplomat killed since the September attack in Benghazi, Libya.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Republican Utopia Discovered in Offshore Banks

This story is blowing up big:
A New York hedge fund manager allegedly swindles $12 million from a prominent Baltimore family. An Indiana couple is accused of bilking hundreds of customers by charging for free trials of cosmetic products. A financial manager in Texas promises 23-percent returns but absconds with $33.5 million of his investors’ money in a classic Ponzi scheme.
All three cases have one thing in common: money that ended up in offshore accounts and trusts set up in tax havens around the world.
They have more than one thing in common: They all have the American Republican Party written all over them.
Among the 4,000 U.S. individuals listed in the records, at least 30 are American citizens accused in lawsuits or criminal cases of fraud, money laundering or other serious financial misconduct.
This is going to be fun to watch.


I started a "Jeremy Irons Apology Countdown" the other day, after Irons said something stupid and offensive in an interview with the Huffington Post when asked what he thought about gay marriage:
"It seems to me that now they're fighting for the name, and I worry that it means somehow we debase, or we change, what marriage is. I just worry about that."
But wait—there's more!
"I mean tax-wise is an interesting one because, you see, could a father not marry his son?
Irons has now responded—not apologized, but responded—and in what can only be described as an offensive and groveling manner. Which is quite a trick.

The full response, from

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Young Man 'Freezes to Death' Making Film About Homelessness

Oy weh:
Lee Halpin, 26, was found dead in a disused hostel in Newcastle where overnight temperatures fell below -4C. Local media reported he had likely frozen to death, although the exact cause of death has not yet been determined. [...]
Halpin recorded a video describing his plan to experience street life as part of an application for a journalist position with the UK's Channel 4. 
In the video, Halpin said he hoped his willingness to sleep rough would demonstrate the "fearlessness" required by selectors for the channel's investigative journalism program.

There appears to be some kind of drug link as well. Just terrible.

This is the video he made explaining his decision to spend a week on the streets:

More here.

Two Thumbs Up to The Onion

Onions are supposed to make you tear up, right?
CHICAGO—Calling the overall human experience “poignant,” “thought-provoking,” and a “complete tour de force,” film critic Roger Ebert praised existence Thursday as “an audacious and thrilling triumph.” “While not without its flaws, life, from birth to death, is a masterwork, and an uplifting journey that both touches the heart and challenges the mind,” said Ebert, adding that while the totality of all humankind is sometimes “a mess in places,” it strives to be a magnum opus and, according to Ebert, largely succeeds at this goal.

Image from here.

U.S. Judge Strikes Down Morning-After Pill Restrictions

Good news:
A federal judge ruled Friday that the government must make the most common morning-after pill available over the counter for all ages, instead of requiring a prescription for girls 16 and younger. In his ruling, he also accused the federal government of “bad faith” in dealing with the requests to make the pill universally available, and said its actions had been politically motivated.
This is opposed by abortion-rights foes as a kind of abortion. It's unfortunate that this still has to be pointed out, but that is not true. A video:

A point about the anti-abortion forces that cannot be made too often: They cannot claim to be about "saving babies" or "protecting the sanctity of life" when they are also against contraception.

If you're against abortion, and you're also against contraception - and that's you, Pope and Catholic Church, as well as a lot of non-Catholic Christians in the anti-abortion forces - then you prove that this is about your religion, not about "babies." You have every right in the world to put up a fight against a woman's right to and access to abortion, however misguided I and others find it, but we should not have to put up with lies about "saving babies" or "protecting the sancity of life," when it is clearly proven by your opposition to contraception that it is not about that. This is about your religious beliefs—and how those beliefs relate to women, and what they're "supposed" to do in this world. If you'd admit that (perhaps to yourself?), we'd all be in a lot better shape.

Update: Oh for - errrg: Obama and his administration are still backing the restrictions! What the hell?

Obama is a very weird dude.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Man Shoots and Kills Chihuahua in "Self Defense"

A 14-year-old Detroit girl is mourning the loss of her pet Chihuahua after her neighbor shot and killed it.

The teenage owner had let 1-year-old Jojo outside earlier, and went back to retrieve him when the shooting occurred.

The neighbor is claiming self-defense saying the dog charged him.
The guy was a licensed gun owner. The dog was a 1-year-old Chihuahua. It had to weigh about 5 pounds, maybe less. God almighty. That should bring charges, but it apparently did not:
Rudolph said police responded to the scene but after interviewing both the owner and the neighbor, officers concluded that he was within his right to use his firearm.
Put whatever feelings you have or don't have about the dog aside - how is it legal to discharge a firearm in a crowded neighborhood - to kill a chihuahua? Especially given that the owner was standing right there? Are we supposed to believe the guy actually believed he was in danger - to the point where he needed to defend himself with a firearm?

That is gun culture gone completely, cowardly, nuts.

The Jeremy Irons Apology Countdown [update]

Update: Irons has responded. Not apologized, but responded.

* * *

Hey, who knew, Jeremy Irons is an asshole. When asked about his feelings on gay marriage, Irons answered:
"It seems to me that now they're fighting for the name, and I worry that it means somehow we debase, or we change, what marriage is. I just worry about that."
But wait—there's more!
"I mean tax-wise is an interesting one because, you see, could a father not marry his son?
Um, what?

Jeremy Irons, first: In what sensible way does a question about gay marriage lead to a question about sons marrying fathers? The answer is that it makes no good sense, it makes only the obvious bad sense—it is the kind of remark so often used to slur gay people by associating them with things like incest (and bestiality).

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Video: Michelle Shocked on Piers Morgan [full video]

This is just the very beginning of the interview (it's all they've put up so far).

Hard to understand why he didn't play what followed immediately after the audio of the Yoshi's show he did play:
If someone would be so gracious as to please tweet out, 'Michelle Shocked just said from stage "God hates faggots".' Would you do it now?
That came right after what Morgan aired. Why not play that?

Anyway, she defends her words by saying the audience "requested reality." As I said here, she has apparently given "reality" a new meaning. And that makes all this the audience's fault.

• More video and commentary here.

Update: Full video:

For what it's worth, her last line, "The apple tree's got some strange fruit Even Adam would not try," is from her own song, "Peachfuzz," which has the line, "...called them fags 'cause that's what they was." I don't know exactly what the song means, just wanted to note that.

Michelle Shocked on Piers Morgan Tonight at 9? [update]

Don't get your hopes up (if you had any). (She showed! See below.)

Michelle Shocked tour meltdown history:

Monday, April 1, 2013

SO tempted to spoil Google's April Fool's joke for the U.S.

I can barely hold myself back...

Make sure you go and hit "Try GoogleNose" - more than once.

Snare Drums ®

I can't believe there's not a drum company called "Snare." If my name was Snare - Phil Snare, or something - I would totally start a drum company.

Catchy beat, huh?