Easter Sunday Open Thread

I hope everyone is enjoying Easter Sunday.

You Tube is already in the spirit of April Fools. It has posted a video announcing that at midnight, it will go dark. It will be stop taking uploads for a decade -- the length of time it will take to decide which of the videos uploaded during the past 8 years is the best,

We've been thrilled with all of the diverse, creative entries we've seen so far, and we can't wait to begin the process of selecting the best video. We'll be announcing the winner in 10 years.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Happy Easter, everyone.. (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Anne on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 06:58:32 PM EST
    I have to say, dinner was pretty damn good...boneless lamb that had slivers of garlic all through it, marinated for 24 hrs in balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, garlic, rosemary, olive oil, a lemon juice and a little honey, oven-roasted potatoes sprinkled with olive oil, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper, fresh green beans, fresh asparagus, apple pie and a lemon pound cake.  My daughter's mother-in-law brought a baked ham, mashed potatoes and ham gravy - along with a shrimp dip.  I also made these scrumptious little mouthfuls called BLT bites: hollowed-out cherry tomatoes filled with a combination of crispy bacon, mayo, parmesan cheese and green onion - yum.

    Everything was perfect, just perfect.

    Now, time to kick back and relax...

    Your house (none / 0) (#6)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 07:07:53 PM EST
    is definitely somewhere I would like to eat!

    We had roasted turkey, potato gratin, green beans, ambrosia, roll and then a peeps cake made by my youngest.

    Note Zorba: i gooled all the things you can do with peeps even the war. It's fascinating what people think to do with these things.


    We also had boneless lamb (none / 0) (#8)
    by MO Blue on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 07:25:18 PM EST
    with lots of garlic. Not sure what my son-in-law used for the marinade but it was very tasty. A small ham was also served along with sweet potatoes, broccoli, two types of rice and a Mediterranean salad.

    Hope everyone had a happy Easter.  


    When I was growing up, my dad would (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Anne on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 08:43:58 PM EST
    only tolerate turkey for one major holiday - Thanksgiving.  For Christmas, it was always beef - a rib roast or tenderloin - and for Easter, it was always lamb.  My dad died in 1989, but we've carried on the tradition, so, it's always lamb for Easter.  It's kind of an acquired taste - not everyone likes it - but, thankfully, we all love it.

    We used to do a regular leg, but there's so much waste with the bone, and it's so hard to carve, that we started using the boneless variety a couple years ago.

    It was just great having the whole family here today - my little almost-4 month old grandson was just the cutest thing ever - wearing a little navy and white gingham check shirt and little khaki cargo pants.  That little face grinning at me just makes my heart fill with joy.


    My son-in-law is the one who (none / 0) (#13)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 06:02:15 AM EST
    introduced lamb into our holiday menus. Most of our small family enjoy it. My daughter, his wife, is probably the one who is the least enthusiastic so we normally have two meats when lamb is served.

    Your grandson sounds wonderful. No wee ones around for us to enjoy. My youngest grandson is now 18. I'm at that in between time when most of my friends and I have to wait for the great grandchildren for more babies to cuddle and enjoy.



    I missed lamb this year... (none / 0) (#21)
    by kdog on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:24:17 PM EST
    the McArabs went with a fresh ham, which was delicious, I musta ate a pound myself, then went to gnaw on the bone and greasy pigskin.  

    But nothing beats lamb on easter, though I find the flavor of cooked on the bone is well worth the extra carving efforts.


    Tried "Turducken" this year (none / 0) (#35)
    by Yman on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 04:40:32 PM EST
    For anyone who doesn't know, a deboned chicken, stuffed inside a duck, stuffed inside a turkey.  Always wanted to try one, but never worked up the courage to attempt it.  Anyway, we got one already prepared and stuffed with an Andouille sausage, rice and cornbread stuffing.  Cooked it right in a plastic, heat-safe, sealed bag for 3 hours.  Ended up very moist and quite good, although I'm sure a homemade version would put it to shame.

    But your lamb sounds much better.  :)


    Caroline Kennedy (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by jbindc on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:07:03 PM EST
    Interesting choice. (none / 0) (#23)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:58:19 PM EST
    I'm not quite sure what exactly Ms. Kennedy brings to the table besides her family's political pedigree, but in the protocol of Japanese politics, pedigree brings prestige and goes a very long way. And further, while she may lack practical experience she's obviously nobody's fool, so if she's quick on her feet and a fast learner, her selection could eventually prove inspired.

    Given everything that is going on in that (none / 0) (#27)
    by caseyOR on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:43:39 PM EST
    part of the world, especially with North Korea, this seems an odd pick to me. I know Japan is considered a plum ambassador posting and often goes to political cronies rather than career diplomats. Still, I think right now an experienced, professional diplomat might have been a better choice.

    Caroline Kennedy seems like a perfectly nice person. A better posting, though, might have been to a less important foreign policy partner at this time. Ireland seems like a natural pick, but her aunt, Jean Smith, held that post under Clinton, so perhaps there was fear that some would shout "Dynasty!" at such an appointment.

    As for myself, well, I would never turn down Paris. You know, if anyone's asking.


    Well she's not going to be (none / 0) (#33)
    by brodie on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 03:43:19 PM EST
    making foreign policy, and naming another Kennedy to the Ireland post, or to the Vatican, might seem a bit insulting -- stereotyping and ghettoizing the clan and the Irish.

    But more important is how the Japanese would perceive this pick and whether they think it honors their country -- and I think they would be favorably inclined, maybe very favorably, with the choice of the leading living member of America's most beloved political family.

    I think she will be more than up to that job, and will be working overtime -- as she would have done had that idiot NY governor named her to the US senate -- to prove she is right for the position given the skepticism.


    Happy Easter (none / 0) (#1)
    by Zorba on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 04:09:02 PM EST
    to my Western Christian friends.
    It ain't my Easter (Eastern Orthodox Easter, which we call "Pascha," is May 5 this year- way later than it usually is), but Happy Easter to the rest of the Christians, anyway.

    Happy Easter to you Early (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Slado on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 10:28:23 PM EST
    Thanks for the great post.  You've inspired me to learn more.

    Especially since I was confirmed as a Catholic last night at Easter Vigil.


    Congratulations, Slado (none / 0) (#11)
    by christinep on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 10:42:18 PM EST
    Easter Vigil is very special...beyond special, really.  Last night, as in most previous years, I attended. The Exsultet, fundamental readings & beautiful psalms, the Litany of the Saints, the first Alleluia, the waters of baptism & acceptance...the power of that ancient service combined with the Mass ever overwhelms.

    Welcome, and Peace To You.


    Thanks (none / 0) (#18)
    by Slado on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:02:46 PM EST
    It was very moving to be a part of it.

    Ms. Zorba, (none / 0) (#2)
    by NYShooter on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 05:04:36 PM EST
    I don't practice, but I was born Russian Orthodox. So, two questions for you, when you have time, if you would, please: The difference, and similarity, between the Russian and Greek Orthodox Churches ( Religions?) Also, the difference the combined two vs. the Catholic Church?

    No rush, m'am, just when you get around to it.

    Thanks a bunch


    Theologically, (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Zorba on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 05:56:02 PM EST
    there is no difference between any of the Eastern Orthodox Churches.  Not the same, though, when the Eastern Orthodox are talking about what we call the "Oriental Orthodox," such as the Coptic Orthodox, the Armenian Orthodox,  the Ethiopian Orthodox, the Syrian Orthodox, and a few others.  This goes way back to a split occurring after the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon, way back in the Fifth Century.  Too complicated to go into here.   (Google it.)
    All of the Eastern Orthodox Churches recognize each other, and any Eastern Orthodox Christian can attend any Eastern Orthodox Church, receive the Sacraments, and become a member.  This includes Greek, Bulgarian, Russian, Serbian, Antiochian, Rumanian, Albanian, Ukranian, Georgian, Finnish, Carpatho-Russian, and other Eastern Orthodox churches.  They are all the same.  There are some minor differences in Liturgical languages and practices, but we are all considered the same.
    As for the differences between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.  Hoo, boy.  Many books have been written about this.  It goes back to the Great Schism of 1054 AD, and it is way, way to complicated to get into in a blog comment.  Suffice it to say, the Orthodox do not believe in the primacy of the Pope of Rome.  Before the 11th Century (and still, in Orthodoxy), all the Patriarchs were/are on equal footing.  None of them had supreme power over the others.  Before the Schism, the Pope of Rome, and after the Schism (as far as the Orthodox are concerned), the Ecumenical Patriarch in Constantinople, were/are only "primus inter pares"-  first among equals.  With the ability to preside over any Ecumenical Council, and persuade, but that's about it.
    Okay, that's way more than I intended to write.

    Major moves do seem to come slowly (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by christinep on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 10:52:25 PM EST
    in the Schism arena.  I remember hearing, for example, that the late Pope John Paul II fervently wanted to visit Russia during his service.  Not to be...because, as you know, this Schism seems to have given meaning to the word for the millenia.  So, with all the "firsts" listed for the new Pope Francis, what struck me as a real "wow" was the report that the Constantinople Patriarch Bartholomew attended the inaugural Papal Mass ... a First since the Schism. Discernable movement on both sides even.

    And then (none / 0) (#5)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 07:05:39 PM EST
    there's Henry the 8th and Martin Luther etc. who started another schism with Rome.

    You could go on and on and on...


    Hey, thanks Z, (none / 0) (#7)
    by NYShooter on Sun Mar 31, 2013 at 07:10:12 PM EST
    Plenty to sink my teeth into. Let me digest this, and I'll be back for more. But, I promise, I'll only ask questions of the "yes" or "no" variety. No essays. I do promise.

    Thanks again, and happy Easter to you, and anyone else reading this tonight.


    Yesterday marked the 45th (none / 0) (#14)
    by brodie on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 10:52:06 AM EST
    anniversary of LBJ's famous withdrawal speech on nat'l tv, March 31, 1968.

    Recent news reports have revealed the previously little-known fact that Johnson, at some point between the announcement and August of that year, intended to get back in the nomination race, hoping to take it away from VP Humphrey at the Chicago convention.  What additional drama and chaos that would have caused at a convo already filled with drama, chaos and violence.

    Still little known is the reaction of the politically astute MLK upon hearing Johnson's 3-31-68 address:  Dr King thought it was a ruse, with Lyndon intending it as temporary only, with a re-entry later in the campaign, which is exactly what LBJ had in mind or sought to bring about later..

    Also on the theme of 3-31, the memoirs of LBJ aide Horace Busby (a major source for historian Rbt Caro)  were posthumously published by his son, Busby having been a versatile assistant -- speech writer primarily, and political consultant among other things.  The book which came out last decade, The Thirty-First of March, has a couple of revealing chapters in the middle re LBJ and JFK, their difficult relationship, Johnson's obvious social uneasiness upon visiting the Kennedys at Hyannis shortly after the convention, and some surprising (for a loyal Johnson man) impressions and conclusions about JFK.

    Then the intriguing chapter, taking place several weeks before Dallas, as Busby accompanied LBJ on a trip to Brussels for a NATO conference (i.e., JFK's way of getting Johnson out of D.C. yet again).  The VP there learned, from contacts back in D.C., of some peculiar media investigations beginning statewide in TX apparently to uncover dirt on Johnson.  Busby is there in the hotel suite as Johnson gets word and becomes quite disturbed at what is occurring.  He thinks his political career is over.  Fascinating inside stuff that I've never seen published before or referenced since the book's publication.

    If Obama's actions could talk what they would say (none / 0) (#15)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 11:38:15 AM EST
    Obama: I really, really want to cut the safety net programs so I am willing to give them away without getting anything in return. What is that you say, doing that might damage the Democratic Party for decades. Let me repeat, I really, really want to cut the safety net programs.

    ... White House sources are now telling reporters that the president is "strongly considering" including entitlement cuts in his 2014 budget, to be introduced around April 10. The budget could lay out precise cuts to Social Security and Medicare, as well as Medicaid, that the president has reportedly been offering in futile negotiations with Republicans, but that he's never officially spelled out.

    The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that the budget will likely include the chained CPI for Social Security. "We and all of the groups engaged on this are starting to feel it may well be in the budget," AARP vice president Nancy LeaMond told the WSJ. The same day the New York Times revealed that Obama and House Republicans are getting close to agreement on a package of Medicare cuts that would restructure Medicare parts A and B - one covers hospitalization, the other doctors' visits -- to raise deductibles for the 80 percent of seniors who see doctors but don't require hospitalization in any given year. The Times reports that some version of the proposal might also find its way into the 2014 budget.
    But if he's now embracing them publicly, doesn't that remove them as something to bargain over?

    Let's remember the key passage in Ron Fournier's recent piece predicting that a "grand bargain" including tax hikes and entitlement cuts was still possible, Republican obstructionism notwithstanding.

    What is the GOP incentive to deal? First, getting the signature of a Democratic president on a bill reducing entitlements would be a victory for a generation's worth of Republican candidates. Casting GOP politicians as Granny-bashers would be harder to do after a Democratic White House tweaks Medicare and Social Security. Second, even token reforms by Obama in 2013, opens the door to deeper entitlement changes in the future.

    OK, I'd rather not see Obama make that deal, because I think it's bad policy. As a New York Times editorial argued Sunday, less than half of 55- to 64-year-olds have any retirement savings, and of those who've managed to save, half have less than $120,000. It's also bad politics: Watch for Republicans to hang those cuts around the neck of Democrats for years to come. But in the context of a big deal that raises revenue, they're at least debatable.

    But putting them in a budget document with the president's name on it, without getting anything in exchange? No one in the Senate wants his or her name on chained CPI: 10 days ago by voice vote they backed a measure by Sen. Bernie Sanders specifically opposing a switch to the chained CPI. No voice was raised on the other side. link

    I would rather he "strongly consider" (5.00 / 3) (#17)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 12:46:27 PM EST
    changing his party affiliation to Republican...

    Maybe it's time to start a call for Obama to change that (D) to an (R); if he wants to govern as a Republican, it seems only right, don't you think?

    And then maybe all these f**king cheerleader Democrats will put down the pom-poms, stop finding reasons to excuse his agenda, and actually, you know, push back against this horror show.

    Wonder how the WH would react to seeing a Time For Change - of Party Affiliation petition go up on their website...


    If the pom-pom waving (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:05:31 PM EST
    Democratic cheerleaders can somehow conveniently forgot that cuts to the safety net programs were  on Obama's agenda when he was president-elect Obama, were on his agenda when he had Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, were on his agenda after being reelected and still claim that he doesn't really want to cut the benefits but is being forced to do so by the Republicans, I seriously doubt that they will stop making excuses now. Their agenda seems more in line with sit down, STFU and learn to live with these cuts for the love of Obama.      

    I would definitely sign a Time for Change of Party Affiliation petition.


    Yeah, I'm afraid you're right... (none / 0) (#25)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:22:59 PM EST

    Well, changing parties -- (none / 0) (#32)
    by brodie on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 03:21:43 PM EST
    that would be consistent with a previous Obama lifetime, if you believe in this sort of silly stuff (and I do, I do).  

    IL Sen Lyman Trumbull, who voted to acquit Pres Johnson (Andrew -- perhaps Lyndon's prior incarnation) on impeachment charges against the wishes of his party leaders, started out in politics as a Dem, then switched to the Repubs during the 1860s and Lincoln.  Later in life and out of office, in a moderate shift leftward apparently, he became a Populist and defended Eugene Debs.

    Hey, just tossing it out as something to consider as we all tear our hair out over why this guy does what he does ...


    Holmes (none / 0) (#16)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 11:42:37 AM EST
    Prosecutors said Monday that they will seek the death penalty for James Holmes.

    According to the DA, this was done after speaking with 800 victims and family members.  While not actually saying what they wanted, he certainly implies it.

    While I have no moral issues about killing Holmes, it will cost the state of Colorado a small fortune.  And I do have issues with society spending entirely too much energy trying to kill people.  Eye for an eye 'justice' is not healthy for society because they are committing the same act as the accused/convicted, just under a different pretense.  

    I will never buy that a person who commits a crime like this isn't insane.  IMO acts like these are what separate the sane form the insane.

    I am almost with you (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by Slado on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:07:10 PM EST
    except a killing is wrong unless in self defense.

    Killing by the state is not self defense so it is wrong.   Murder is vial and the ultimate sin but I do not trust the government to do it with 100% accuracy and I wouldn't give myself the privilege of revenge so why would I give it to the state?

    Lock em up, throw away the key but killing is murder even when it's done for revenge or "justice".  


    Prosecutors who use death penalty (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by jondee on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 01:39:11 PM EST
    convictions as career stepping stones are about as useful to our society as a cult of human-sacrificing Kali worshippers would be..

    These are abysmally loathsome people. But, probably the reason that they're so (seemingly) convinced that there's nothing pathological about mass murder, is because they themselves rather routinely make the throwing away of a life their bread-and-butter, their meal ticket..


    I just (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:43:16 PM EST
    wish we'd get away from the death penalty and just put people in prison for life. You're right about it taking so much time and all that. Just put them in prison and then if something comes up to where they are innocent, then deal with it then.

    Of course, I don't think Holmes guilt or innocence is too much in doubt.


    ACP (none / 0) (#28)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:46:52 PM EST
    The Armed Citizen Project has decided to make Houston it's first case study city.

    Apparently the pro-gun people have decided to take the offense and start arming people who can't afford guns.  IOW, putting more guns in the ghetto.

    The goal is to find if there exists a causal link between an increase in the presence of firearms and the level of crime.  

    Great, and what happens if the causal link is not to their liking and that even more people die because their introduction of more guns ?

    But fear not:

    All participants that wish to receive a weapon, and take our training, will receive one break-over 20 gauge shotgun, which holds one shell at a time.

    Why aren't they giving away hand guns or assault riffles, the answer is obvious.  Just wish they would conduct their little social experiments in the own neighborhoods and leave my city out of it.  

    Houston, Texas has plenty of guns, and since there is plenty of gun violence, more guns is not going to solve the problems guns create.  It's bad enough right wing idiot buy into these ridiculous claims, but to believe it so truly that you are willing to risk people's lives is truly deranged.  Especially when you consider their general views of the 'moocher' class, no food stamps, but here's a gun.

    Here's the thing (5.00 / 3) (#40)
    by jbindc on Tue Apr 02, 2013 at 07:27:27 AM EST
    Considering there are an estimated 19,000 sexual assaults in the military alone every year - a place where the women are trained in and have access to high tech weapons, not to mention being physically fit and trained in hand to hand combat - here's my question:  How in the world does anyone think that little Sally Smith of the Junior League of Houston or Betsy Jones, who works the night shift at the diner, is going to be better equipped and prepared to use a shotgun against a potential rapist?

    Holey Moley (none / 0) (#29)
    by sj on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 02:52:01 PM EST
    Is there no end to stupid?

    Read their press release for the (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 03:05:28 PM EST
    Anti-Rape Kit initiative, just above the arming-the-ghetto press release...

    It is with great pride that we announce our new Anti-Rape Kit Initiative, in which we will be providing shotguns, ammunition, and training to vulnerable women in high crime areas free of charge.

    As responsible members of the Houston community, we are interested in deterring occurrences of rape with the threat/use of force/deadly force. We have already begun training and arming women in high crime areas, and are committed to empowering women and helping the city of Houston decrease the substantial backlog of untested rape kits.


    With our Anti-Rape Kit Initiative, we will aid in the reduction of the backlog of untested rape kits, by providing clear, direct, severe, and permanent consequences for the crime of rape.



    Sometimes you click on a link ... (none / 0) (#36)
    by Yman on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 04:47:00 PM EST
    ... fully expecting an article from The Onion, only to find out that it's real.



    Hmmm - the cynic in me has to wonder (none / 0) (#31)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 03:13:35 PM EST
    what percentage of the donations will go to salaries and other bennies for the Executive Director and other staff members. This could turn out to be a better paying gig than becoming a television evangelist preacher.

    Designing and implementing new ways at getting citizens armed and able to defend themselves will be a priority of the Armed Citizen Project. We have an operable pay-pal account, and are in the process of registering as a non-profit.  The firearms will be purchased with donations which will also cover other expenses that will be incurred in the process of the analysis portion of this project.  

    1% to gun purchase and distribution and 99% for operating expenses would result in amount of the least damage.


    That's What I Was Thinking... (none / 0) (#34)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 03:52:07 PM EST
    ...more so because there a PayPal button on every page I linked to, and the website looks and reads very... flim-flammy.  Reminds me of the original Zimmerman donation page, complete with an American flag.

    I always though the poor areas of big cities were the ground zero reason we all need guns.


    You made me dig (none / 0) (#38)
    by Yman on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 05:13:46 PM EST
    Turns out this is the brainchild of a graduate student in Houston - Kyle Coplen.

    No details on who will be conducting the "study" and reporting its results (John Lott?), but it's funny that - in addition to only providing single-shot shotguns - they will also require background checks and mandatory safety and tactical training.  From a "group" that claims that all gun restrictions/laws must be passed by constitutional amendment in order to be valid.



    A single-shot shotgun?!?! (none / 0) (#37)
    by Yman on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 04:52:14 PM EST
    A gun that holds less than 10 rounds and isn't even semi-auto?!?  How are they supposed to defend themselves with that?!?  Don't they ever watch Walking Dead?

    BTW - Aren't these clowns from the same silly group that thoroughly mocked Biden for suggesting a shotgun for home/self-defense?


    If watched the Walking Dead, (none / 0) (#39)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 01, 2013 at 06:31:26 PM EST
    you would know the best weapon is a sword wielded by Michonne, as gunfire attracks more zombies.