Monday Open Thread

Excellent read: BMaz at Empty Wheel, Tsarnaev: Right to Counsel, not Miranda, is the Key.

NBA star Jason Collins announces he's gay.

Ricin suspect J. Everett Dutschke appears in court.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Some days, I truly don't believe the (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:28:20 PM EST
    nonsense - and that's putting it nicely - that our members of Congress come up with:

    Republicans want to limit the number of bullets federal agencies can purchase so American gun owners can buy more.

    Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe and Rep. Frank Lucas have introduced a bill that would prohibit every government agency -- except the military -- from buying more ammunition each month, than the monthly average it purchased from 2001 to 2009.

    "President Obama has been adamant about curbing law-abiding Americans' access and opportunities to exercise their Second Amendment rights," said Inhofe.

    "One way the Obama Administration is able to do this is by limiting what's available in the market with federal agencies purchasing unnecessary stockpiles of ammunition."

    Yeah, it's Jim Inhofe; whenever the dumbest man in Congress gets into the act, you know it's going to make you want to bang your head on a table.

    Is there a shortage of ammo available (none / 0) (#11)
    by oculus on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:35:38 PM EST
    for purchase by civilians?

    No (none / 0) (#14)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:53:43 PM EST
    But it gets a couple conspiracy nuts that are running for reelection in 2014 a headline. It helps scare off further right primary opponents, and shows politicians from neighboring Texas that they can be just as nutty in Oklahoma too.

    But this stance undermines the concept (none / 0) (#15)
    by oculus on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:57:52 PM EST
    Of never cutting military spending and  support for law enforcement. Consistency/hobgoblin.

    Don't confuse them (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:13:02 PM EST
    They're on a roll.

    Agreed. (none / 0) (#21)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:44:53 PM EST
    To paraphrase the late President Woodrow Wilson, why attempt to murder a man who's busy committing suicide?

    inconstistant, often repeats that Emerson quote.

    I don't know about regular ammo (none / 0) (#20)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:28:24 PM EST
    but I do know the blanks used in track meets are in short supply.

    A shortage (none / 0) (#27)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 04:28:40 PM EST

    Yes there is a shortage of ammunition.  For reloaders, powder, bullets, and primers are hard to get as well.



    It is quite possible that there might (none / 0) (#46)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 08:06:27 PM EST
    be a shortage of ammo. There was a run on guns and ammo prior to the 2012 election and again after Newtown since all the current conspiracy nuts were sure that Obama was going to take their guns and ammo away.  Basically it boils down to a self-inflicted injury that gives them additional fodder for their new the "scary black man" is plotting to take our guns and ammo away conspiracy.  

    I think Inhofe's status as ... (none / 0) (#18)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:13:27 PM EST
    ... "Dumbest Man in Congress" is presently facing a very stiff challenge from Texas Rep. Louis Gohmert and Sen. Ted Cruz.

    And while the lights may be on at Alaska Congressman Don Young's place, there's clearly no one home there, either. You can never count him out of the running with performances like this and this.

    And in the interest of equal time for women, how about a shout-out to North Carolina's Virginia Foxx? All too frequently, she hyperventilates quietly in the dark shadows of Michele Bachmann's funhouse, but occasionally makes a befuddled appearance on the House floor to sound like a malevolent Aunt Bea on a three-day bender.


    Uh-oh...we're actually paying down the (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:07:28 PM EST
    debt...whatever will the deficit/debt/austerity hysterics do now???

    Did Alan Simpson's head explode?

    Is Obama going to double-down on safety-net program cuts?

    In another sign of an improving deficit picture, the Treasury on Monday said it expects to pay off debt in the current quarter for the first time in six years.

    In a statement, Treasury said it now expects to pay off $35 billion of debt in the April-to-June quarter, compared to an earlier projection, given in February, that it would have to borrow $103 billion.

    This will be the first quarter that Treasury has paid off debt since April-to-June period 2007.


     Last week, as a result of the improved outlook for the deficit, the Bipartisan Policy Center pushed back the estimated date that the U.S. might hit its debt ceiling to far as mid-to-late September from the previous estimate of late August to mid-September.

    Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said last week he could not forecast the exact date when Congress has to raise the ceiling to avoid a default.

    Republicans in Congress want to use the debt ceiling to seek spending cuts from President Barack Obama

    Simpson and Bowles heads (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by KeysDan on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:22:16 PM EST
    should be exploding what with the unmasking of their intellectual underpinning (such as it is) by the 28-year old  U Mass graduate student, Thomas Herndon,  and his professors.

    These U. Mass researchers report that Harvard professors, Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff, the influential austerity duo,  produced a fatally flawed paper (a proceeding, not peer reviewed), in a paper entitled: "Growth in a Time of Debt."  

    Reinhart and Rogoff's often cited work was the economic equivalent of Cheney's claims about Saddam's WMD and set the stage for cuts to government spending.   Excel coding errors, selective exclusion of available data, and unconventional weighting of summary statistics are cited by Herndon, et.al., that led to errors that inaccurately represent the relationship between public debt and GDP growth.

    Two heads may be better than one, except when they are on the same shoulder--and it seems, to me, that Reinhart and Rogoff were too close in thought to the advocacy of their friend, the Wall Street billionaire,  Pete Peterson.

    Carmen Reinhart was a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute, Kenneth Rogoff is listed as an advisor to the Peterson Institute, and Ms. Reinhart's husband , Vincent, is involved at the AEI, which receives funds from Peterson.  And, of course, Simpson and Bowles agree with Peterson on his obsession to tackle social security and medicare by cutting them--a lot.  

    And, Pete Peterson, himself, is a big fan of Reinhart and Rogoff.  He, Simpson and Bowles may soon be the only ones.  And, none too soon.


    Sandra Day O'Connor regrets decision on (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by kmblue on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 04:34:09 PM EST
    Bush V. Gore.  A bit late, Madam.  From the NY times.

    I had (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by lentinel on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:01:46 PM EST
    always respected her until I read, some years ago, that she admitted that her vote on Bush V. Gore was based entirely on partisan Republican political considerations.

    Very disappointing, and really, just about as low as one can sink as a Justice imo.

    It's like dropping a bottle with a horrible virus in it, having it shatter on the floor and letting everything and everyone be contaminated for generations - and then saying, "sorry".


    She lost ALL credibility as a jurist (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by Dadler on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:40:39 PM EST
    At least with me. Nice lady if she's on your bowling team, or in your sewing circle, or gets her hair done next to your granny downtown, but when it came time for her to step up to the plate in the biggest judicial at-bat of her career, what did she do?  She threw the game. And I like your virus analogy better. She reminds me of McNamara with all his Vietnam mea culpa stuff a few decades too late. Thanks and don't let the coffin lid hit you on the way down.

    I've always thought (5.00 / 3) (#36)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:56:39 PM EST
    the Gore legal team blew it. The Gore team only requested manual recounts in 4 of the 67 counties. That was a recipe for disaster in court when it's the vote of the entire state that counts. If they really cared that every vote be counted, they would have petitioned for the manual recount in all 67 counties.

    Sad to say, but the Gore legal team wasn't looking to count every vote, they were looking to win. Had they petitioned to recount the entire state, which they could have done, they would have probably won the vote, the case, and the presidency.


    Al Gore was raised in too much comfort... (none / 0) (#39)
    by Dadler on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:08:19 PM EST
    ...to be the guy to fight that battle. When he and Tipper put on that ridiculous kiss at the convention, oy, spare me. They almost beat the Michael Jackson/Lisa Marie Presley kiss in the "Real Romance" category with that one. Almost.

    As I recall... (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by sj on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 07:37:22 PM EST
    ...it was Gore's legal team putting the brakes on the recount battle.  I thought he wanted to go for it, but was talked out of it.

    That surrender seems (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by lentinel on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 11:27:24 AM EST
    to have set the stage for the all the democratic caving to follow - including the thoughtless rush to embrace W's manic push for war in Iraq.

    And the sad-sack mentality survives to this day.


    To paraphrase that selfish, awful (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by jondee on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 04:30:57 PM EST
    man Ralph: that the election was even that close means that this country is in a lot of trouble..

    They didn't just ... (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by sj on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:48:40 PM EST
    ... drop the bottle, they threw it down on concrete.  Nothing accidental about it.

    I (none / 0) (#43)
    by lentinel on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:58:35 PM EST

    I meant to say that the bottle was dropped deliberately.

    But "throwing it on concrete" is a more definitive image.


    O'Connor never said that (3.50 / 2) (#47)
    by bmaz on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 10:17:10 PM EST
    You have any link to back that up? I disagree with a LOT of O'Connor's jurisprudence, and very much  do as to Bush v. Gore, but that is  simply not something she would, or did, say.

    My recollection is that it was her husband who (none / 0) (#48)
    by Angel on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 10:25:44 PM EST
    said she wanted to retire but  wouldn't be able to do so if a Democrat were President as she wanted a conservative to replace her.  Thus her vote to decide the case in Bush's favor.  

    Per Wiki: (none / 0) (#50)
    by oculus on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 04:45:27 AM EST
    "On December 12, 2000, The Wall Street Journal reported that O'Connor was reluctant to retire with a Democrat in the presidency:
    "    At an Election Night party at the Washington, D.C. home of Mary Ann Stoessel, widow of former Ambassador Walter Stoessel, the justice's husband, John O'Connor, mentioned to others her desire to step down, according to three witnesses. But Mr. O'Connor said his wife would be reluctant to retire if a Democrat were in the White House and would choose her replacement. Justice O'Connor declined to comment.[44]"

    Her husband John (none / 0) (#63)
    by bmaz on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 02:41:32 PM EST
    ...who was already a little infirm, made a joke at a cocktail party. Not exactly  credible evidence she made a purely personal partisan vote on a historic case in the Supreme Court in violation of every ethical principle she ever stood for. Again, I've not agreed with much of her jurisprudence over the years, but I think what is being alleged is unfair to the justice I have seen and known during that time.

    It appears most SCOTUS justices at least think the (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by oculus on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 02:46:29 PM EST
    thing, I..e., if possible, I'd like my replacement to be nominated by a President with whom I agree.  

    Do I think O'Connor was so antsy to (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Anne on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 03:04:48 PM EST
    retire during a Republican administration that it affected her ability to render an impartial decision on Bush v. Gore?

    That may be a stretch, especially given that she didn't actually step down until 2005 - but I think, as it's been reported, that her making an uncharacteristic  outburst while watching election returns and leaving her husband holding the bag to explain it, makes it harder to cast his remarks as a joke.  If he was experiencing the effects of the dementia to which he would ultimately succumb, his response may have been more unfiltered than he realized.

    I don't purport to know what was going on in her mind at the time; I think people are reacting to the regret she's recently expressed and finding it more shallow than they would like given what transpired during two Bush terms.


    Here you go (none / 0) (#55)
    by jbindc on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 09:18:17 AM EST
    O'Connor regrets Bush v Gore decision

    "It took the case and decided it at a time when it was still a big election issue," Justice O'Connor told the Chicago Tribune editorial board on Friday. "Maybe the court should have said, `We're not going to take it, goodbye.'"

    She continued: "Obviously the court did reach a decision and thought it had to reach a decision. It turned out the election authorities in Florida hadn't done a real good job there and kind of messed it up. And probably the Supreme Court added to the problem at the end of the day."

    The result, she allowed, "stirred up the public" and "gave the court a less than perfect reputation."

    I think bmaz was looking for a link to (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by Anne on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 09:43:43 AM EST
    substantiate lentinel's claim that O'Connor said that she had been thinking about stepping down after the 2000 election, but didn't want to do it when a Democrat was in the WH.

    I think the following may be more responsive, from Newsweek:

       Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and her husband, John, a Washington lawyer, have long been comfortable on the cocktail and charity-ball circuit. So at an election-night party on Nov. 7, surrounded for the most part by friends and familiar acquaintances, she let her guard drop for a moment when she heard the first critical returns shortly before 8 p.m. Sitting in her hostess's den, staring at a small black-and-white television set, she visibly started when CBS anchor Dan Rather called Florida for Al Gore. "This is terrible," she exclaimed. She explained to another partygoer that Gore's reported victory in Florida meant that the election was "over," since Gore had already carried two other swing states, Michigan and Illinois.

        Moments later, with an air of obvious disgust, she rose to get a plate of food, leaving it to her husband to explain her somewhat uncharacteristic outburst. John O'Connor said his wife was upset because they wanted to retire to Arizona, and a Gore win meant they'd have to wait another four years. O'Connor, the former Republican majority leader of the Arizona State Senate and a 1981 Ronald Reagan appointee, did not want a Democrat to name her successor. Two witnesses described this extraordinary scene to NEWSWEEK. Responding through a spokesman at the high court, O'Connor had no comment.

    I can't find (none / 0) (#59)
    by lentinel on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 11:20:01 AM EST
    a link at this moment.

    Everything links to her current comment.

    All I can say is that I remember reading it.
    It is not something I would want to or even consider making up.
    As I said, I respected her - and when I read that, it was a shock.

    If I find a link, I"ll post it at a later time.

    As I said, this was several years ago that I read what I posted.

    Anne's comment below is the closest to substantiating her partisan republican loyalty mindset at the time.


    Where is the money going? (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by MO Blue on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:33:01 PM EST
    The only thing we have to fear is fear itself and we are apparently very afraid. The ever mutating concept of "homeland security" has garnered more public funds since 9/11 than President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal. Pretty amazing, who knew fighting phantoms could be so expensive?

    For decades, the Department of Defense has met this definition to a T.  Since 2003, however, it hasn't been alone.  The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which celebrates its 10th birthday this March, has grown into a miniature Pentagon. It's supposed to be the actual "defense" department -- since the Pentagon is essentially a Department of Offense -- and it's rife with all the same issues and defects that critics of the military-industrial complex have decried for decades.  In other words, "homeland security" has become another obese boondoggle.

    But here's the strange thing: unlike the Pentagon, this monstrosity draws no attention whatsoever -- even though, by our calculations, this country has spent a jaw-dropping $791 billion on "homeland security" since 9/11. To give you a sense of just how big that is, Washington spent an inflation-adjusted $500 billion on the entire New Deal.


    Dem seeks constitutional amendment (5.00 / 2) (#61)
    by MO Blue on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 12:50:46 PM EST
    protecting school prayer.

    Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) has proposed a new amendment to the Constitution that would ensure the protection of voluntary school prayer.

    Rahall introduced his amendment to coincide with National Prayer Day this Thursday, and said he believes the Constitution has been misinterpreted on the question of whether school prayer is allowed. He said the Constitution has been cited as a way to prevent prayer in schools, but said this goes against the "true intent of the Framers."

    "As a Christian and a public servant, I am convinced that the Constitution was intended to ensure that the government not dictate religious practices or prevent individuals from worshiping as they choose -- like praying voluntarily in school," Rahall said Monday. "Many, including early English settlers, came to America to escape governments that established religions or discriminated against certain religious practices, and our Founding Fathers reflected on that when they crafted our government's guiding document." link

    Need to recruit more Republicans to run for office as Dems so that the Democratic Party can pass 100% of the Rublicans agenda.

    Zimmerman case in this morning's news. (3.00 / 2) (#58)
    by Angel on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 11:16:13 AM EST
    So that he doesn't have to recount (none / 0) (#62)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 12:53:01 PM EST
    His actions on the stand for all of us to hear and pick apart twice?  His lawyer says that they may call for a SYG hearing simultaneously or after trial.  How does that work?  Does that work?

    I'm hoping Jeralyn might post an explanation of (none / 0) (#66)
    by Angel on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 03:19:48 PM EST
    the action and what exactly it means in the grand scheme of things.  

    Is this sad or what? (none / 0) (#1)
    by oculus on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 01:47:16 PM EST
    (Although I do recall Armando's prediction Tebow would not make it as a pro.)


    I think Mark Sanchez will be the next (none / 0) (#2)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 01:53:29 PM EST
    Jets QB to get the heave-ho...

    I think you're probably right ... (none / 0) (#7)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:23:17 PM EST
    ... given that the Jets drafted West Virginia'a Geno Smith in the second round this week. Too bad they can't draft a head coach.

    There were a lot of Ravens fans who (none / 0) (#13)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:42:57 PM EST
    were beside themselves when Steve Bisciotti hired John Harbaugh instead of offering that job to Rex Ryan, but I think we can see that there's a reason why Mr. Bisciotti has been so successful in business.  

    What we didn't know at the time - although there were signs of it - was that when Rex ran the defense the inmates were running the asylum; the locker room was highly dysfunctional and getting worse by the minute.

    And while the Ravens' defense has declined from what it used to be, I don't think there are too many fans these days who still think we got a raw deal when Harbaugh was brought in.

    I think Rex has a great defensive mind, but I don't think he's head coach material; I don't know where he is, contract-wise, but I don't think he's got long to prove to Woody Johnson that he should stick around for a couple more years.


    I think you've pegged Ryan ... (none / 0) (#23)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:56:56 PM EST
    ... to a tee. As the late, great UCLA coach John Wooden once cautioned us about people like Mr. Ryan, we shouldn't mistake furious activity for actual achievement.

    Not too sad (none / 0) (#3)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:08:02 PM EST
    he's already made double in the NFL what the average American with a doctoral degree makes in their lifetime.

    Now the Jets need to jettison Rex Ryan. (none / 0) (#5)
    by caseyOR on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:13:25 PM EST
    Make a clean sweep. New coach, new quarterback.

    I think he's a good coach (none / 0) (#19)
    by jondee on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:26:41 PM EST
    but in the words of the late, great, Jimmy Reed, the Bright Lights and Big City went to his head and he started acting as though he subconsciously wanted to be on the NY Post's front page every other week..

    Straphangers, coeds, slayfests, Hizzoner, and Rex Ryan..

    That team doesn't need a new coach so much as they need a good shrink, starting with the ownership and working down..


    ... really worthwhile with the rest of his life. He's only 27 year old, and earning $8.25 million annually should give him a significant jump start on post-NFL life, if in fact his playing days are numbers.

    College and pro athletes, regardless of sport, should look for inspiration from the Minnesota Vikings' Hall of Fame DT Alan Page, who used his earnings to successfully put himself through law school at the University of Minnesota -- earning his J.D. in 1978 while still an active player, no less.

    The Honorable Mr. Page has spent his last 20 years as a highly respected associate justice of the Minnesota State Supreme Court. Talk about your great second acts!


    Comments about Jason Collins seem to be (none / 0) (#4)
    by caseyOR on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:12:09 PM EST
    positive so far. He's gotten support from David Stern and Kobe Bryant among others.

    Now, will Collins, currently a free agent, have a job next season with an NBA team? If so, how will his new teammates react to his being out?  That reaction will be, I think, very important for other athletes contemplating coming-out.

    I am gratified to see that Collins coming out is not being screamed across the news media in giant banner headlines. No hysteria. No anguishing about locker room etiquette.

    If he never said a word (none / 0) (#8)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:26:00 PM EST
    the odds of him having a contract next year would only be 50/50. And if he isn't signed, he will no longer be the first as a couple former NBA players have already made that announcement.

    Not to diminish his announcement, but the reason you see no headlines screaming would likely be a combination of: he isn't currently playing; nor under contract to play next year; and averaged just 1.1 points per game this year.


    1.1 points/game? Will any team gm (none / 0) (#10)
    by oculus on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:33:48 PM EST
    even know who he is?

    Well, were I an NBA owner, ... (none / 0) (#26)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 04:14:40 PM EST
    ... general manager or director of player personnel, I'd think that signing Collins to a free-agent contract would be a no-brainer, if only to reap the whirlwind of positive publicity your franchise would garner in the present climate.

    It wasn't screamed (none / 0) (#49)
    by nycstray on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 11:00:16 PM EST
    but he was top of the news here. Perhaps because he played at Stanford, but the national news that followed also had him at the top.

    I found his SI piece to be to be well written and very level headed. IMNSHO, anyone would be an a$$ to try and take him down by his words (and who he is) that he wrote.

    I think for the sane among us, we may finally be hitting a level. The insane among us will continue to clutch their pearls and spout hate, pretty much the same as it ever was. Hopefully, it looks like they could die off . . .


    Jason Collins was one of the young guns ... (none / 0) (#6)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 02:14:20 PM EST
    ... during the Stanford Cardinal's runs to the 1998 Final Four, where they lost to eventual national champion Kentucky in overtime, and to the 2001 Elite Eight, where they lost to Maryland. He was the 18th overall pick in the first round of the 2001 NBA draft. He played this past season for Boston and Washington, and is now a free agent.

    Collins' courage in being the first active NBA player to come out of the closet, now THAT'S what I call leadership. The L.A. Lakers' oh-so-manly Dwight Howard could stand to learn a few things about that concept, particularly in light of his disgracefully immature performance at Staples Center yesterday.

    If Jason Collins (none / 0) (#22)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 03:56:28 PM EST
    doesn't play another game, he could follow in the footsteps of John Amaechi which wouldn't be bad for him at all. I'm guessing Amaechi never thought it would take another 6 years. I don't expect any Tim Hardaway type reactions this time from current or former NBA players. Amaechi made this easier for Collins.

    Agreed again. (none / 0) (#25)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 04:09:46 PM EST
    Given the recent public blowback against the homophobic comments offered up by the San Francisco 49ers' Chris Culliver during the run-up to this year's Super Bowl, a number of NBA players appear to be heading in the opposite direction, and are supporting Collins publicly. One can only hope that this indeed proves a real game-changer.

    Judy Clarke appointed as expert in Tsarnaev case (none / 0) (#29)
    by TycheSD on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 04:56:00 PM EST
    Huh. (none / 0) (#30)
    by Zorba on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:01:22 PM EST
    Well, the new comments indications now seem to be working, at least for me (Mozilla Firefox).

    Joe Biden just called for (none / 0) (#37)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 05:59:56 PM EST
    ...the release of the 6000 page report on torture compiled by the Senate Intel committee.  

    The reason for the delay that I have been given every time I call Senator Feinstein's office (she is chair of the committee) is that the report is "classified."  Didn't Dick Cheney establish in court that the VP could declassify material by fiat?

    In any event if the WH is asking for it the excuse that it's "classified" is no longer operative.  There will be a new one.

    Don't remember who was talking about milkweed (none / 0) (#38)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:04:50 PM EST
    I've never seen a monarch in my yard but currently have five very large plump Monarch caterpillars (that look like this) demolishing one of my milkweeds like they are at an all you can eat buffet.

    Grab a couple and put them in a (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:11:13 PM EST
    terrarium with a stick or two that they can build their chrysalis's on, and feed them milkweed leaves. It's really an amazing and beautiful transformation.

    I recently read (none / 0) (#42)
    by CoralGables on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:47:07 PM EST
    that intervention such as that, placing them into a controlled environment, greatly increases the survival rate to the butterfly stage. I may have to give it a try with the next batch that appears.

    Milkweed.. (5.00 / 3) (#45)
    by desertswine on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 07:39:39 PM EST
    is their primary food.  Monarch numbers are decreasing, it is thought herbicides are to blame.
    But on the other hand there is some good news.   "Victory for bees' as Europe bans neonicotinoid pesticides blamed for destroying bee population
    15 of the 27 member states voted for a two-year restriction on neonicotinoids."

    I just finished listening to (none / 0) (#51)
    by oculus on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 04:51:09 AM EST
    Barbara Kingsolver read her new novel , "Flight Behavior," which revolves around the plight of the Monarchs. Quite a good story.  

    Groovin beat of the day (none / 0) (#41)
    by Dadler on Mon Apr 29, 2013 at 06:36:37 PM EST
    Backlash from the gun vote (none / 0) (#52)
    by Yman on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 07:43:10 AM EST
    Looks like people aren't happy about some of their Senators voting against the gun control bill, even in states with lots of gun owners.

    Looking forward to those ads when they're up for reelection.

    Can Police Trash Homes Without Restriction? (none / 0) (#53)
    by RickyJim on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 07:43:19 AM EST
    I would love to know the restrictions on police searching a home.  Paul Kevin Curtis', the previous prime suspect in the ricin case, had his home severely damaged.  I can't believe that getting restitution in his case requires a long court battle.

    Restrictions? (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by kdog on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 09:11:35 AM EST
    Restrictions are for civilians...all we got is access to the courts, while that lasts.

    Forget restitution for damages, if the feds seized (aka stole) any property he's probably gonna have to sue to get that back too.  


    I wanted to read details in the article (none / 0) (#57)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Apr 30, 2013 at 10:23:01 AM EST
    that supported the "unlivable" conclusion, but was disappointed.