ProgressVirginia reported Tuesday afternoon that the Virginia Senate’s Privileges and Elections Committee killed Sen. Charles “Bill” Carrico Sr.’s electoral college-rigging bill, despite an offer by Carrico to amend the bill to award electors in proportion to the state’s popular vote. The vote was 11-4 against the bill, although it will not be official until the close of the committee meeting.
Conservative host Rush Limbaugh on Monday suggested that sexual conduct policies stifled romance because sometimes "no means yes if you know how to spot it."
Last week, the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights ended its Title IX investigation of Ohio State University when the school agreed to its strengthen sexual assault policies, The Washington Post reported. OSU said it would expand prevention training, and increase awareness of anti-discrimination laws.
For Limbaugh, however, "agreeing" to consent "takes all the romance out of everything," he said on his Monday show.
"Seduction used to be an art," he opined. "Now, of course, it's prudish, and it's predatory, it's bad."
The conservative talker noted that the new OSU rules described consent as "the act of knowingly, actively and voluntarily agreeing explicitly to engage in sexual activity."
"Consent must be freely given and can be withdrawn at any time. You have to be sober, not coerced," he continued, reading from the guidelines. "The absence of 'no' does not mean 'yes.' It must be asked every step of the way. It cannot be implied or assumed even in the context of a relationship."
I'm sure she would have never accidentally shot a student. After all, she's a teacher and a responsible gun owner!
A Taylorsville elementary school teacher somehow shot herself in the leg while in a school restroom.
The 6th-grade teacher, Michelle Ferguson-Montgomery, was in a faculty restroom at Westbrook Elementary School (3451 W. 6200 South) on Thursday morning when her handgun went off, said Ben Horsley, spokesman of Granite School District.
The accidental shooting occurred at a little before 9 a.m., before school started. No students were around at the time, Horsley said.
It turns out she actually shot the toilet:
The Utah teacher whose gun accidentally discharged while she was in the faculty bathroom actually shot the toilet, making it explode.
The 14-year veteran teacher, identified as Michelle Ferguson-Montgomery, was rushed to the hospital Thursday after the shards from the toilet pierced her skin, said Granite School District spokesman Ben Horsely.
She was originally believed to have accidentally shot her self in the leg.
It didn't take long for the Minnesota Vikings to reverse their principled stance against star running back Adrian Peterson, who they deactivated for yesterday's game.
The Minnesota Vikings reinstated star running back Adrian Peterson on Monday, three days after benching him because he was facing a child-abuse charge in Texas for using a wooden switch to spank his 4-year-old son.
Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf said the decision to bring back Peterson for practices and Sunday's game at New Orleans was made "after significant thought, discussion and consideration." Peterson was deactivated for Sunday's 30-7 loss to the New England Patriots after he was charged with striking his 4-year-old son with a tree branch this summer.
The Wilfs say they want to let the legal process play out before making any more definitive decisions on Peterson's future with the team.
I wonder if Zygi will say they never saw the photos of Peterson's bruised and bloodied four year old son?
Looks like Bill Clinton will be out there, urging Dems to get out the vote in the Southern states. He's right, we're not used to turning out in the mid-terms and we have to change that. Greg Sargent at the Plum Line:
For the purposes of understanding this midterm election, the most important quote of the weekend by far comes from Bill Clinton, who said this while in Iowa yesterday:
“I’ve studied all the polls and I really believe that we’re still in a zone where they’re all real close and it depends on who decides to show. And our side’s not used to voting in midterms. We gotta get used to it. There’s a lot at stake.”
In that interview, Clinton suggested that this is particularly true of the Senate contests in southern states. Clinton said that Senator Mark Pryor could probably hang on in Arkansas “if we get the turnout.” And speaking about the contest between Dem Michelle Nunn and GOPer David Perdue, Clinton said that African Americans are “under-registered in Georgia” and added that if Dems “increase the number,” victory is possible even in that red state.
Fox News helped promote more fear in America by giving a platform for a Texas Sheriff spewing "ISIS American invasion" conspiracy theories and then asked for advice on how we protect ourselves form the Quran carrying marauders as well as how Obama should handle them in iraq. As usual Elisabeth Hasselbeck did her hyperbolic best for Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter to promote his theories.
Gary Painter, Sheriff from Midland County, Texas, warned Fox & Friends’ Elisabeth Hasselbeck that not only was ISIS poised to sneak into the U.S through the porous Texas-Mexico border, but that based on evidence he’d heard of, “Muslims” were already being smuggled across. He presented no evidence that the alleged Muslims were connected to ISIS or any other terror group.
“Are you saying that ISIS is ready to come across poised to perhaps execute what they have threatened to do, attacks on the United States, drown us in our own blood?” Hasselbeck asked. “Is that what you’re saying?”
“I’m saying the border is wide open,” Painter replied. “We have found copies, or people along the border, have found Muslim clothing, they have found Quran books that are laying on the side of the trail. So we know that there are Muslims that have come across, have been smuggled in the United States.”
It's a great day at Fox when someone calls them out on their hypocrisy and yesterday was one of those rare days. Howie Kurtz interviewed TMZ founder Harvey Levin and tried to get Levin to admit he pays for video and only sensationalists like TMZ engage in that shameful practice. Kurtz, the ever-so-tactful journalist who penned an editorial entitled, "What if we just pulled the plug on Ferguson?”, tried to trivialize the role of TMZ as a "raunchy tabloid" operation which is certainly not a news gathering source. Levin had other plans for Kurtz's opinion. He said,
We been around for nine years, and you look at all the stories we've broken...There are stories literally that every newscast in America has put on their air. I would take issue with the way you're describing it because if that's the case, you guys have been spoon-fed this stuff over at Fox News as well as everywhere else. For nine years, you have been taking all of our stories, so I'll just rest on that."
Kurtz, notably busted, responded with a cliché; "We all live in TMZ's world now." He then asked, how much TMZ paid for those Ray Rice videos and reiterated the raunchy tabloid insult because they "pay for video." Levin says,
"you work for a news company that pays for video. Fox News pays for video.
Lee Fang is one of a handful of reporters I always read, and he does a great job with this Nation piece, naming names, pointing out the conflicts, and explaining the insidious effect of paid defense 'analysts' on the decision to go to war:
If you read enough news and watch enough cable television about the threat of the Islamic State, the radical Sunni Muslim militia group better known simply as ISIS, you will inevitably encounter a parade of retired generals demanding an increased US military presence in the region. They will say that our government should deploy, as retired General Anthony Zinni demanded, up to 10,000 American boots on the ground to battle ISIS. Or as in retired General Jack Keane’s case, they will make more vague demands, such as for “offensive” air strikes and the deployment of more military advisers to the region.
But what you won’t learn from media coverage of ISIS is that many of these former Pentagon officials have skin in the game as paid directors and advisers to some of the largest military contractors in the world. Ramping up America’s military presence in Iraq and directly entering the war in Syria, along with greater military spending more broadly, is a debatable solution to a complex political and sectarian conflict. But those goals do unquestionably benefit one player in this saga: America’s defense industry.
Any minimally intelligent voter should know by now that not only does outsourcing a service make it less likely it will be done properly, it doesn't really save money -- because taxpayers often end up paying twice: Once for the outsourcing version, the other to get it done properly after the outsourced company does a half-assed job. So why do voters keep falling for the politics of scarcity that aren't really about scarcity at all, but about moving public money to private profit? Rahm Emanuel's administration is a textbook case:
Nearly half of the principals in the district responded to a survey by the Chicago Principals and Administrators Association and said that ever since the school district awarded $340 million in two custodial management contracts in February to private concerns, their schools have been filthy,according to Catalyst Chicago. Principals reported serious problems with rodents, roaches and other bugs, filthy floors, overflowing garbage bins, filthy toilets, missing supplies such as toilet paper and soap, and broken furniture — issues they said they didn’t have before. Now, many said, they spend a lot of time trying to clean their buildings.
Thomas "What's The Matter With Kansas?" Frank takes political data journalism to the woodshed:
Back to the main point. It is true that some of the hottest deck chairs on the sinking ocean liner known as the press are number-crunching divisions like The New York Times’s “Upshot” section and Ezra Klein’s own former department, the Washington Post’s “Wonkblog.” In these corners of the trade, journalists today are no longer content merely to quote political scientists; they aspire instead to be political scientists. Where they once gave us words, they now deal in charts. Graphs! Diagrams!
There are times where it's best to just let stories die. That is, unless you're Sarah Palin and are so narcissistic you just can't resist spinning things your way, via an unnamed "friend of the family."
Here then, for your enjoyment, is WasillaBilly Sarah's version of The Great Anchorage Brawl:
What no one disputes is that several members of the former first family of Alaska arrived at a well-attended birthday party, at which several competitive snowmobile racers were present.
Todd Palin, himself an elite racer of “snow machines” (as the vehicles are known in the 49th state), was celebrating his 50th birthday that night, though the party was not being held on his behalf.
With a live band, dancing, and the former governor rocking red-white-and-blue high-tops, everyone seemed to be having a good time.
But then, some words were exchanged. And that’s where the stories diverge significantly.
According to previously published eyewitness reports, the fracas began when Track Palin, the former governor’s adult son, confronted a former boyfriend of his 20-year-old sister, Willow.
But according to the Palin family’s version of events, the instigator was actually the former boyfriend.
The initial tussle occurred, the source said, after the young man in question “tried to get in” to the Hummer limousine after he’d engaged in some unspecified “questionable behavior.”
If you've got an hour to spare and are a fan of historian and journalist Rick Perlstein, you should really enjoy the interview above from this Sunday's Q&A on C-SPAN:
Rick Perlstein talked about his book, The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan, the third in a series by Mr. Perlstein tracing the evolution of the conservative movement in American politics. He talked about the early career of Ronald Reagan, his entrance into politics after his film career began to falter, his change from the Democratic to the Republican Party, his support of Barry Goldwater, and his rise to the presidency. Mr. Perlstein also talked about the methodology and research associated with the book, and the criticism by some historians surrounding its publication.
A better description for those "historians" than the one C-SPAN gave would be Reagan apologists and public relations hacks that Karoli wrote about in her posts here and here. Regardless of the description, it's actually a really good interview with Lamb.
Friday night, Bill Maher ended his big-buzz Flip A District competition by announcing the misogynist toady for the 1% he would work to defeat in November: John Kline in southeast Minnesota (MN-02).
Democrats have grown unaccustomed to anyone holding any Republican Party leaders or committee chairmen, like Kline chair of the House Education and Workforce Committee, accountable for their destructive policy agendas. That's because DCCC chairman Steve Israel has taken the entire GOP leadership, including all their committee chairs, even ones like Kline in vulnerable districts, "off the table."
About a year ago Keith Ellison introduced us to Mike Obermeuller, the progressive Democrat running for the seat Kline currently occupies. Ellison looked and the poll on the right and so did Blue America and we came to the same conclusion: this is a very winnable race.
The Steve Israel DCCC brain trust looked at it too-- and decided to invest their money with Blue Dogs and New Dems in much redder seats that don't have half the chance to be taken by a Democrat. Obama won MN-02 against McCain and against Romney but the DCCC is squandering resources in districts where Obama didn't even get 40% of the vote, while starving this one for funds.
Hey, everyone needs a gig and far be it from me to criticize anyone for taking a fat paycheck for blowing smoke out his ass. But just look at how useless Jay Carney is as a political commentator! He repeats the formulaic prediction that Democrats will have a bad year (gee, I remember the pundit class saying the same thing in 2006, when the Dems won everything that wasn't nailed down) instead of just laying out the factors in play and admitting he really has no idea how it will all turn out. (Because he doesn't.)
All I have to say is, when my hairdresser starts talking about how she's going to vote and so is everyone she knows, we probably have some surprises in store:
In his new guise as a political commentator for CNN, former White House Press Secretary Jay Carney dished out conventional wisdom on State of the Union Sunday morning, which in this case meant diagnosing the Democrats’ chances in the upcoming midterms as poor.
What is it with game show hosts? They're all hucksters and idiots. Pat Sajak is a screaming teabagger and so is Chuck Woolery. But his latest series of tweets may be the stupidest right wing tweets of all.
I have been reluctant to say this, but I think we have a Muslim problem in the White House. So where does that leave the Democrats?
— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) September 12, 2014
Yeah, reluctant my ass. You and your Breitbot pals love this stuff. By any chance are you pals with Breitbart's father-in-law, Orson Bean?
We may not know for sure what's going on but we can sure make a very educated guess. My guess. Obama is a Muslim. Trouble 4 us.
— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) September 12, 2014
Zzzzzzzt! You LOSE, Mr. Woolery. You have absolutely no education with which to make such a guess. Next contestant, please.
Iv'e had about all I can take from this Peaceful Religion, that is not a religion at all, Muslims are on the March, Coming to a town near U