Wednesday Open Thread

Our last open thread is full. Here's another one, all topics welcome.

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    Anita Hill. (5.00 / 3) (#15)
    by lentinel on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:21:22 PM EST
    I was watching a fascinating documentary called, "Anita".

    It chronicles the hearings in the Senate regarding the confirmation of Clarence Thomas for the Supreme Court.

    There is footage of Ms. Hill testifying.
    She is genuine, articulate and eminently believable.

    Then comes Mr. Thomas - about to embark on his treatise comparing the hearings to a "lynching".

    What really caught my ear was an incredible Freudian slip on the part of Mssr. Thomas: He said, (get ready for this), that he denied the charges brought by Ms. Hill "uncategorically".

    Not "categorically", mind you.
    Case closed.

    Watching Biden asking Ms. Hill to repeat over and over salacious details - truly unnecessary - really gave me the creeps.

    The Republicans were vicious - but the Democrats ranged from weird and furtive - like Biden - to ineffective. And Biden brought the hearing to a close without calling as witnesses people who had trekked to Washington for the purpose of supporting Ms. Hill's account of Judge Thomas's behavior.

    A sorry spectacle.

    Anita Hill comes across as someone truly trustworthy, forthright and believable. Someone with natural integrity. These are qualities that you don't often see in public life.

    And we're stuck with Thomas.

    Anita (none / 0) (#18)
    by squeaky on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:49:45 PM EST
    Looks like a great film..  

    And as much as an a## Thomas is, I would not call his use of uncategorically a freudian slip, as enticing as that may be...

    It is a common malapropism for categorically..

    IMO, it is indicting enough that, as a SC candidate, he used a malapropism. Pretty poor..


    This guy should totally run for some (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:59:35 PM EST
    Political office.  I would vote for him.
    Don't judge a book by its cover, right? Matthew Silver is a familiar sight to New Yorkers and is regularly sighted roaming Central Park and parts beyond wearing a vast multitude of tiaras, dresses, scuba-suits and whatever else he finds that he decides looks pretty cool.

    When stopped and questioned by two young filmmakers, Silver dropped a metric sh!t-ton of life advice on their unsuspecting brains. Not only that, he peppered his sage wisdom with fart noises and chicken-clucking. Because that's the best way to get your point across. Deliver a profound message of achieving your goals - mixed with a fart noise.

    Is he some crazy randomer with a giant beard or is he, in fact, the next Tony Robbins or Dalai Lama? Watch and decide. We want to believe he's both.

    I'm of the opinion that fart noises would (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by Angel on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:10:48 PM EST
    be more intelligent than some of the self-righteous crap coming out of the mouths of the republicans and tea partiers.  And don't get me started on how entertaining the chicken-clucking would be.   :}

    And what's with the music? (none / 0) (#22)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:14:53 PM EST
    Was that added or does it just play magically every time he talks?
    Honestly, I think he's kind of hot.

    Which probably explains (none / 0) (#23)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:16:01 PM EST
    Why I live alone

    Well, well (none / 0) (#41)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 07:41:38 AM EST
    I must say that you and the Capt have just sooooo
    elevated the discourse...



    Feel free to pass on by anytime you don't (5.00 / 2) (#96)
    by Angel on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 04:21:34 PM EST
    like the subject matter.

    Check out Todd Marshall's art (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:44:15 PM EST
    I have known Todd for a long time.  We worked together in the 90s and later a couple of places including Disney for the Dinosaur movie.  and then again in my last game job in 2011.  I was reminded of him because I just saw what I was sure was some of his art on a PBS Nature show about frogs.  So I looked on his site and, yep, there it was. It was Beelzebufo-the devil frog Scroll down to find it.  Encourage you to check out other galleries.  There are several.  His art is amazing.  He is pretty much the go to guy for scientific visualization of Dino's for places like National Geographic, Scientific American etc.

    Pretty F-ing amazing! (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by ZtoA on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 08:59:23 PM EST
    My thoughts exactly. (none / 0) (#34)
    by ruffian on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 09:08:48 PM EST
    Would live to see them in a gallery. They really jump out at you!

    They are usually not very big (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 09:56:44 PM EST
    Many are done in Photoshop so it just depends on how big he prints them I guess.  Don't know if you saw the Nature show on frogs (it airs again later tonight) but that is about as big as most of his art I have seen.  It's shown laying in a desk that Attenborough is sitting at.

    Btw (none / 0) (#30)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:45:18 PM EST
    Todd gave me the homeless puppy that chewed up my grandfather clock.

    "No Fly" list held unconstitutional, (5.00 / 8) (#36)
    by Peter G on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 10:31:41 PM EST
    NO Texas death penalty for 3x pot possession (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by Lfrieling on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:19:42 PM EST
    The rumor that a Texas judge just sentenced someone to death for pot possession, third offense, was satire, not fact.

    Apparently, Texas has a cut-off at 50 pounds of pot for a jump to a serious prison sentence, 2000 pounds for risk of a life sentence, ANDj possession of pot concentrate, (dab? wax? etc.?) a life sentence is a risk.

    We have our work still ahead of us.  Our progress may be seen both in how far we've come AND in how far we have to go!  Lenny

    General (ret) Keith Alexander, (5.00 / 4) (#99)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 05:19:27 PM EST
    former head NSA/US Cyber Command, who retired in March of this year following revelations of secret NSA programs leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden, is now a cyber-security consultant for banks and other financial institutions.

     His asking price for consultative fees is $1 million per month, but he has, reportedly, yielded to a remuneration of $600,000 per month.   Florida Representative Alan Grayson seems to be tweaking the General, by questioning the magnitude of his consulting fees and just what he is offering for them to his banking clients--raising the question of possible misuse of classified information.  

    How much does he charge... (5.00 / 2) (#118)
    by unitron on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:13:14 PM EST
    ...just to tell them "Don't hire anybody named Snowden."?

    His asking price for consultative fees is $1 million per month, but he has, reportedly, yielded to a remuneration of $600,000 per month.

    Oh, the humanity!

    How can he stand such brutal suffering?


    What could be wrong with (none / 0) (#135)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:02:57 PM EST
    This picture?

    Wait till his consulting gets hacked :). My cousin who works IT security for the Air Force posted yesterday on facebook "Hackers still do it better". No details, just fatigue.


    Troubled (5.00 / 2) (#156)
    by ruffian on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 10:51:23 AM EST
    Crooks&Liars (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:08:18 PM EST
    The head line says she "pretends" she might go third party.  I really don't think she is pretending.  If the GOP primary doesn't give them a full mooner next time I will bet that she, and lots of others, does.  In '16 they will not accept another establishment candidate.  And that ain't nothin but good news for us.

    And it may start before '16 (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:11:28 PM EST
    He sounds (none / 0) (#4)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:33:31 PM EST
    just like an evangelical preacher. No wonder they are crazy about him.

    Talk radio (none / 0) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:34:42 PM EST
    Same thing

    House Republicans (none / 0) (#3)
    by jbindc on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:13:19 PM EST
    block funding for DC's marijuana decriminalization

    House Republicans on Wednesday blocked funding for a new D.C. law that would eliminate the threat of jail time for pot possession, leaving the fate of one of the country's most liberal decriminalization efforts unclear.

    The D.C. law is supposed to take effect next month and make possession in the nation's capital punishable by a fine of just $25.

    A spokesman for Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) said the city would proceed with implementing the law, even as its authority to mete out the smaller penalties beyond October would remain up in the air.

    Gray's office also warned that as drafted, the city needed to determine if the action taken by House Republicans could force the city to shutdown its entire medical marijuana program, which started last year.

    Marijuana advocates, meanwhile, were pushing a legal theory that House Republicans' actions could leave D.C. with no enforceable marijuana law, effectively legalizing possession.

    The interference from House Republicans, however, was broadly seen as another defeat for D.C. home rule and the ability of its Democratic mayor and left-leaning council to self govern. The council voted overwhelmingly in March to eliminate jail time for possession, calling it necessary to combat deep racial disparity in drug arrests in the District. Studies have shown use among teens varies little by race, but nine out of 10 arrested in nation's capital are African American, contributing to an estimated 10 percent of D.C. residents who have criminal records, and trouble finding jobs.

    No suprise (none / 0) (#5)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 03:33:57 PM EST
    here from me at least.

    And that's yet another reason why ... (none / 0) (#7)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 04:03:43 PM EST
    ... the District of Columbia should be abolished as an autonomous federal enclave, and the city of Washington ceded to the State of Maryland for administrative purposes. The federal capital district is a political anachronism, a long-obsolete vestige that's left over from the country's late 18th / early 19th century politics.

    In effect, D.C. has become a freewheeling political design district, in which rules nominally applicable elsewhere in the country don't apply there. And for far too long now, the resident federal political establishment and its attendant coterie of courtiers and corporate lampreys have treated the city of Washington as their own personal fiefdom.

    And why not? They, and not the majority of city residents, get to call the shots. Congress controls the city's purse strings, and can overrule both mayor and city council practically at whim on anything from municipal budgets to those criminal and civil ordinances which displease them, as the House Republicans have just demonstrated here.

    And as a result, the federal political establishment has rendered D.C. a very cozy place to conduct business as they wish, outside the prying ayes of folks back home in the fifty states. Because in D.C., the rule of law as applicable to that establishment is only as effective as the congressional and executive will to enforce it.

    I pray that one of these days, people will finally wake up and realize that a good part of the problem of Beltway dysfunction rests with the existence of the District of Columbia itself. Washington can still function as the federal capital while officially part of Maryland, and the city itself can finally enjoy home rule under Maryland state law, rather than at congressional discretion.

    If D.C. were abolished as autonomous federal territory, the federal political establishment will no longer be allowed to treat city residents with arbitrary disdain, capriciousness and neglect. And further, those residents will be able to vote for and have congressional representation, who will be part of the Maryland delegation.



    I don't disagree, but... (none / 0) (#8)
    by jbindc on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 04:19:22 PM EST
    ... Maryland doesn't want it back. And since both Congress and the State of Maryland would have to agree (and I don't see Congress agreeing either), it's kind of a moot point.

    Oh, and there's also the pesky little problem of something called "The Constitution"....


    Well, theoretically (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:19:25 PM EST
    the parts of DC that are not the National Capital Service area could be ceded back to Maryland (retrocession), the way the parts of DC west of the Potomac were returned to Virginia back in the 1840's.  This would require a vote in Congress and the Maryland Legislature.
    However, that leaves the 23rd Amendment and the fact that the very small section still left as the District of Columbia would have three electoral votes, with very, very few people living there to vote on using them.  It would basically require a new amendment, or an outright repeal of the 23rd. Both at ain't happening any time soon.
    And you're correct, as well.  We in Maryland don't particularly want the District lands back.  Some do, but most don't.    ;-)
    My suggestion is, if they cannot have voting representation in Congress, then the people who live there should not have to pay any federal income tax.  No taxation without representation, after all.

    Tax (none / 0) (#14)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:21:21 PM EST
    I never understood how that was legal.

    Because (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:27:51 PM EST
    The United States says so.  And it's never been successfully challenged in court.

    So (none / 0) (#17)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:30:11 PM EST
    It must be benefiting someone?

    Of course (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:04:43 PM EST
    The United States Treasury.    ;-)

    Repealing the 23rd Amendment ... (none / 0) (#26)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:02:08 PM EST
    ... would require a new amendment to the Constitution, similar to how the 20th Amendment specifically repealed the 18th Amendment (which had essentially banned the sale of liquor and set the stage for Prohibition).

    Sure, it would take time, but it could be done. Same thing for enticing Maryland to assume sovereignty over Washington. That would require a combination package of specific incentives and protections, such as requiring the federal government to continue to assume responsibility for paying off all existing debt and bond issues for the district, and not use retrocession as an excuse to slough off those financial obligations -- which are quite substantial -- upon Maryland taxpayers. But conversely, integrating Washington with Maryland also holds enormous potential to bring additional and substantial revenues to state coffers.

    Another alternative would be for Congress and the nation to consider granting statehood to the District of Columbia. That, however, is probably even more of a nonstarter than ceding the city to Maryland, since most states which lean Republican can be expected to oppose any such proposal, given the assumption that the new state's congressional delegation would be entirely Democratic.



    How do you know that? (none / 0) (#24)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:40:47 PM EST
    The State of Maryland has never been requested to resume control over the area in question, so there's never been any actual formal discussions thereof. And please do expound further on your rather flippant comment that "there's also the pesky little problem of something called 'The Constitution ...' Because you've really piqued my interest with your breadth of knowledge about that document.

    Given that the U.S. Constitution actually predates the creation of the original District of Columbia by three years, nowhere in that document does it state that D.C. shall serve as the seat of the federal government. For that matter, the Constitution says nothing about the location of the federal capital. Rather, Article I, Section 8 states that Congress shall have the power:

    "To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings[.]"

    That's it. There's no mention of the capital's locale, and the only specification is that such a federal district cannot exceed ten square miles in area. And there's nothing prohibiting the federal district from being even smaller in size than it presently is.

    Thus, the federal district really only has to comprise of those specific blocks of Washington which actually constitute the seat of federal government. It certainly doesn't require that an entire American city shall remain under the Congressional thumb in perpetuity.

    The origins of the District of Columbia are rooted in the Compromise of 1790, an agreement brokered by Treasury Sec. Alexander Hamilton (New York) and Sec. of State Thomas Jefferson (Virginia) to resolve a serious policy impasse between northern and southern states.

    Under that compromise's terms, the federal government was to assume all state debts dating back to the Revolutionary War, the overwhelming majority of which was owed by northern states. In exchange for southern support of legislation to that effect, the future national capital -- in 1790, the U.S. Capital was Philadelphia -- was to be sited below the Mason-Dixon line in the southern United States.

    This agreement enabled the subsequent passage of the Assumption Act of 1790, which authorized Congress to pay off all state war debts, and the Resident Act of 1790, under which Congress authorized President George Washington to select a site for the construction of the new federal capital, with the only stated requirement being that it shall be located along the Potomac River.

    President Washington chose the present-day site, which was coincidentally not far from his home in Mt. Vernon. The District of Columbia came into being upon the formal cession of territory to that effect by both the Commonwealth of Virginia and the State of Maryland. Included in that cession were two already existing centers of population -- Georgetown, Maryland and Alexandria, Virginia.

    Washington, D.C. officially became the national capital on November 17, 1800. The following year, Congress passed the Organic Act of 1801, which gave exlusive authority of all district lands to the federal government, and formally organized the District of Columbia into two counties -- Washington, which included Georgetown and all areas of the district north of the Potomac, and Alexandria, which included all district areas south of that river.

    In 1846, due in large part to the expressed fears of Virginians and other southerners that slavery would soon be abolished throughout the entire District of Columbia, the federal government agreed to return Alexandria County -- present-day Arlington County and the city of Alexandria -- to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

    This was achieved through an act of retrocession, which required only an affirmative vote in both Congress and the Virginia legislature. However, Congress rejected requests from Maryland that it do the same for Washington County, preferring to retain the territory north of the Potomac.

    This later placed the federal government in serious jeopardy in April 1861, when Virginia seceded from the Union and joined the Confederacy, and Maryland threatened to do the same. (Both were slave states.) President Abraham Lincoln countered by ordering federal troops to occupy the Maryland state capital at Annapolis and prevent Maryland legislators from convening to consider articles of secession, which undoubtedly would have passed had they done so. Thus, Washington, D.C. was able to retain its place as the U.S. capital, rather than be abandoned by the government for a safer locale farther north.

    In 1973, Congress passed and President Nixon signed into law the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, which for the very first time gave Washington residents the authority and responsibility for electing their own city government.

    Yet under that very same act, Congress retained the right and authority to first review and then approve all legislation passed by the City Council and signed by the mayor, before any of its provisions could become law. Further, Congress retained exclusive authority over the city's budget, which pretty much effectively neuters the commonly accepted notion of "home rule," given that the Washington City Council can only propose a municipal budget for members of Congress to consider.

    So, there's nothing in the Constitution that precludes Congress from ceding the city of Washington back to Maryland. The only operative requirement being that Congress shall retain authority over those specific locales, i.e., "Needful Buildings," which actually comprise the seat of federal government. Therefore, all that's needed is:

    • Public realization that the District of Columbia as presently comprised no longer serves any useful public purpose, having become instead the quasi-private domain of the well-connected and well-heeled, not subject to scrutiny by any of the fifty states; and

    • The attendant public will to make changes necessary to bring home rule to the majority of city residents, and thus curb the power of their present congressional overlords over their lives.


    The big problem is (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 06:47:18 PM EST
    even if Congress were to vote for retrocession, which is doubtful, I also seriously doubt that the Maryland Legislature would agree.
    Yes, it would give more electoral votes to Maryland, but it would also come with a bunch of problems that many citizens in Maryland simply do not want to deal with.

    Don't you think ... (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by sj on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:47:48 PM EST
    ...it's a little presumptuous thinking you know more about Maryland and its political landscape than Donald does? Whatever can you be thinking? Just because you live there...



    It wasn't a complete waste of time (5.00 / 1) (#108)
    by NYShooter on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:21:07 PM EST
    1000+ words, but, I did find out that Congress passed "The Organic Act" in 1801.

    Just imagine, a posting duel to the death: on one side we have Donald, with his 1000 word posts searching frantically for someone who cares, and, on the other, we have Howdy, with his 1000 posts, everything from guacamole spreads to "Fargo" teasers.

    Frozen in "Awe" doesn't begin to describe it.

    Does the Universe even contain enough oxygen?

    Stay tuned.


    I have no memory of ever posting about (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:29:02 PM EST
    Guacamole "spreads".  But it sound dirty so I will find something for you.   And I'm sure Donald would be glad to give you the history of the avocado.

    Here's an idea,  you don't like our posts?

    Don't read them.



    I made avacado ganache today :) (5.00 / 3) (#110)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:32:33 PM EST
    Forgive me lord, I have sinned

    And? (none / 0) (#163)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 02:49:10 PM EST
    How was it...  ?

    Spread this (5.00 / 3) (#111)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:34:57 PM EST
    The avocado had an ancient reputation for inducing sexual prowess. The Aztecs, whose name for the avocado was ahuacatl, which means testicle, used the avocado as a sex stimulant and believed so deeply in its sexual nutrients that virgin women were forbidden to leave their houses during avocado harvest days. Avocados are a good source of potassium and folate, nutrients important to circulation and heart health. The Department of Urology at the University of Michigan Medical Center states that heart health is essential for erectile health. The avocado is also rich in essential fatty acids and certain B vitamins.

    That's right now, perhaps. (none / 0) (#27)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:15:54 PM EST
    But never is an awfully long time, and political fortunes and prospects can ebb and flow like the tides, or change like the direction of the wind. What might not be possible now, may be entirely feasible and even desirable ten years from now.

    Further, people need to realize that any such proposition is hardly going to happen overnight. For it to even be plausible really depends in large part upon what the terms would be for any retrocession of Washington to Maryland. There are some very real and legitimate concerns regarding municipal debt and assumption of liability, which would certainly have to be addressed to everyone's satisfaction before such a transfer of territory could ever be expected to take place.

    But like I said above, there are also some very real incentives for Maryland to consider taking it seriously, such as broadening and diversifying the state tax base. Washington offers enormous potential for Maryland in substantively increase its own state revenues, because it's a wealthy city despite its large pockets of severe poverty.



    "This concludes Part I of The History (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:40:00 AM EST
    of the District of Columbia.  Should you wish to hear Part II, please return to the Information Desk to have it loaded onto your listening device.  Otherwise, return your device to the Information Desk where your security deposit will be refunded.  We hope you have enjoyed the presentation."

    Congratulations... (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by unitron on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:24:48 AM EST
    ...you have found a way to get me to agree with Jim on something.

    : - )


    I am proud (none / 0) (#94)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:54:15 PM EST
     Very proud.



    lol (none / 0) (#40)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 07:37:51 AM EST

    Hmmm... (none / 0) (#43)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:15:13 AM EST
    Louie Gohmert introduced a bill for retrocession last year.

    Nobody wanted it (unless you believe this April Fool's joke).

    But on the brigth side - you and Louie Gohmert agree on something!


    I'm not sure that would be something (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:25:07 AM EST
    I'd want people to know, lol...

    RIP, Eli Wallach (1915-2014). (none / 0) (#9)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 04:36:16 PM EST
    The popular veteran character actor had a long and storied career, and continued working well into his nineties, appearing most recently in Clint Eastwood's "Mystic River" abd Roman Polanski's "The Ghost Writer." In what proved to be his final role in 2010, he was Julius Steinhardt, the wise old banker who predicted financial catastrophe in Oliver Stone's "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps."

    But Wallach is probably best remembered for his roles as the heavy in two of the most highly regarded westerns in cinema history. Most notably, he was Calvera, the flamboyant bandit chief in "The Magnificent Seven," and Tuco, the scummy gunman in Sergio Leone's "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly."

    Aloha to a class act.

    99 years is not a bad run (none / 0) (#10)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 04:56:00 PM EST
    No it sure ain't. (none / 0) (#28)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:35:46 PM EST
    And if you're active and in good health and of sound mind, so much the better.

    My mother has an older neighbor who's 95 years old, and still goes to work at the law firm he helped found, four days a week. (He takes Mondays off, his only concession to age.) He's sharp as a tack and physically spry, to boot. You'd think he was no more than 70, to look at him.

    He's been widowed for almost fifteen years now, so I think he really enjoys the company of other people who share his interests and passion, which in his case is the law. Mostly, he says, he serves as in-house senior counsel on cases assigned to the younger associates, whom he mentors and advises. He likes doing what he does, and as long as he can do the job, why not? And he's computer savvy and literate!



    My sisters mother-in-law (none / 0) (#32)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 07:57:28 PM EST
    Is 96.  She lives alone, drives, gardens.  You would take her for late 70s probably.

    If Neil Cavuto cuts you off (none / 0) (#11)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:09:03 PM EST
    For being a right wing lunatic .......

    I don't even know how to finish that sentence.

    Fox's Neil Cavuto and Michele Bachmann Get into Epic Shouting Match: `You're Being Silly!'

    Oops (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 25, 2014 at 05:13:48 PM EST
    Cavuto (none / 0) (#164)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 03:08:36 PM EST
    responds to the hate mail from this episode

    "They go pretty much like this," he said. "'Cavuto, you're a rude ass. If I were Michele Bachmann, I'd have a law against you.' Someone else said, 'Who do you think you are? [Bill] O'Reilly? You're an idiot. Quit blabbering, start thinking.'"

    Cavuto apologized that the interview "got a little heated," but he maintained that his point was "sound."

    Many viewers disagreed and the hate mail kept coming on Thursday.

    "Even 24 hours later, a lot of you are more than a little hot and bothered," Cavuto said before offering another sample of the response from viewers.

    One emailer said Cavuto was "extremely rude and overboard" in the interview. Another asked, "Off your meds again, huh Cavuto?"

    One viewer even suggested that Democrats get preferential treatment on Fox.

    "Boy, what an ass Neil was," the viewer wrote. "I will watch for a Dem to get grilled like that but won't hold my breath."

    I'm sure (none / 0) (#166)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 03:24:38 PM EST
    the screams about how Cavuto has "sold out" will start soon. The people who are acceptable in wingnuttia is getting smaller and smaller.

    Wound up from toooooo much driving (none / 0) (#37)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:53:37 AM EST
    So I quested for a healthier chocolate experience that could compare to squeaky's mousse.

    Chocolate avocado truffles?  And I have two avocados on the counter...hmmmmmm

    Watched Tyrant, creepy so far

    Almost every review I read (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 07:36:53 AM EST
    Whined about how "needlessly over the top" the evil brother was.  Huh? Have you paid any attention to people like Saddams sons over the last few decades.
    IMO to make such a drama without such a character would be dishonest.  I hope she bit it off.
    It was creepy.  IMO in a good way.  I saw lots of very interesting story.  I think the teenaged son is gay.  His future there should be interesting.  At least to me.

    Previously.tv agrees with you about the son (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:25:36 AM EST
    It seemed pretty obvious in a highly telegraphed way...the sister pretty much said it.

    I have a feeling I am on the way to hate-watching this show, much like I do 'Homeland'.

    Justin Kirk may save it for me - he is too big a name to just be a small character. I like him playing someone smart and in nice clothes!


    I think I am on the same path (none / 0) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:29:13 AM EST

    Watched it last night too (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:22:21 AM EST
    Not great, but enough to keep interest if I can suspend mountains of disbelief and ignore dialogue like "Your terrorist nephew".

    The scene where the brother beats the guy up in the bath reminded me of a similar scene in the movie  'Eastern Promises'. In fact pretty much a rip-off. So, having already seen it in that movie, I did not find it over the top!

    I do confess I fell asleep and missed most of the wedding, just saw the aftermath...so I will rewatch that scene, although I think I have the gist...


    Heh (none / 0) (#49)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:30:47 AM EST
    Then you missed the son trying a pickup line on a short cute guy who looked at him like he had lobsters coming out of his ears.  That was also reminded of eastern promises.  Nit sure if that was intentional.  If it was it was dumb because eastern promises was IMO amazing.  Not a good thing to invite comparisons to.  
    That was Crononbergs Russian mob movie, have you seen his American mob movie, A History Of Vuolence? If not you should.

    Maybe they should have called 'Tyrant' (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:11:55 PM EST
    'Middle Eastern Promises' if they were going to rip it off so blatantly!

    It's beginning to look like (none / 0) (#51)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:32:34 AM EST
    I need to watch Eastern Promises :)

    You absolutely should (none / 0) (#53)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:38:08 AM EST
    And A History Of Violence.

    Both with Vigo


    Capt H beat me to it. Both are wonderful (none / 0) (#71)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:08:18 PM EST
    and Vigo is great in them.

    Plus Ed Harris (none / 0) (#74)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:36:25 PM EST
    And William Hurt.  I think it might be Harris best role ever.

    Go For It (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by squeaky on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:05:26 AM EST
    Looks yummy... maybe add a touch of cayenne...

    If a professional foodie (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:30:22 AM EST
    Thinks that recipe has potential, I'm doing it today :).  I still have some bittersweet chocolate left.

    Pinned that recipe to my Pinterest (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:40:57 AM EST
    "Favorite Recipes" board...

    A little heat might cut the richness just enough, so I'd be inclined to add a little cayenne.  Or maybe skip the vanilla and add orange extract and/or a touch of orange zest.

    Avocados are a favorite food at our house; it's so nutrient-dense that it's easier not to feel bad about the calories.  I hadn't tried them in recipes as a butter substitute, but I might give it whirl in my brownie recipe, which calls for 2 sticks of butter...


    You're still pinteresting? (none / 0) (#61)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:05:14 AM EST
    Me too.  Some of the polymer artists have pinterest boards now.  I only have 100 polymer ideas and projects lined up.

    When Josh was still a baby and I was trying to find something to do that I could manage while keeping him close at hand, I ran across something at the library about an artist named Jen Parrish using something called polymer clay.  She liked to make relic looking jewelry.  So I bought some clay to see what I could do with it. She has since become pretty successful and it is cool that you can follow artists on pinterest.



    It's a major time suck, and sometimes (5.00 / 2) (#64)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:26:41 AM EST
    I have to remind myself that looking at Pinterest isn't the same as actually doing any of the thousands of cool things that apparently a lot of other people have time for, lol.

    I don't know if you're aware of this, but one of the neat things you can do with Pinterest is create "secret" boards that are only available to specific people you invite; we did that for my younger daughter's wedding shower, and now that she's having a baby in October, we're doing it for that shower.  Makes the planning so much easier, especially when there are about 7 people involved in giving, planning and contributing to the shower!

    My older daughter, who has been making jewelry for some time - though not as often now that she's wrangling an 18-month old and working part time - has done some work with the polymer clays, so I will have to mention this to her.

    Aside from the food, I love all the organizational things people come up with - although doing a major purge of the stuff we've managed to accumulate as a result of being the only niece/nephew of two of my father's now-deceased siblings, and then  my mother's downsizing from her house to move to a retirement community, would go a long way to getting that in gear.  

    The real problem is that my husband just doesn't want to get rid of anything, or so it seems.  I have to sneak-purge, lol: if he sees me getting rid of stuff, he has a fit, but if I get rid of it when he's not around, he doesn't ever miss it.  I used to do that with the kids' toys when they were little - wait until they left for school, and then have at it.  They never noticed.


    I sneak purge too :) (none / 0) (#66)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:37:58 AM EST
    And wonder when I will do all those projects

    When stuck, I love pinterest for inspiring color schemes.


    I purge all the time. (none / 0) (#86)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:21:13 PM EST
    That way, I always have an excuse to get more stuff. ;-D

    I'm thinking about instituting a new (5.00 / 3) (#89)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:34:39 PM EST
    rule: for every new thing that comes into the house, 10 old ones have to go out (if you buy a new shirt, you have to get rid of 10 items, whether that's 10 articles of clothing we all know we're never going to wear again, or 10 old towels or 10 plastic containers you can't find lids for (or lids you can't find containers for).  The Goodwill will take the clothes.  The local pet rescue will take the old towels.  You can recycle the plastic and the magazines.

    This will be an adjunct rule to: get rid of at least 10 things every day, even if you didn't get anything new.  Even if it's 10 old magazines, that would be 10 fewer things cluttering up the house.

    We'll see how it goes.


    That's a good rule. (5.00 / 1) (#138)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 02:25:46 AM EST
    We also have the Cerebral Palsy Foundation call us regularly to let us know when they're doing pick-ups in our community. That gives us an incentive to go through our closets and drawers and donate clothes which, as you noted, we know damned well that we're probably never going to wear again.

    I'm a closet clothes horse at heart, so I always have something I can give away, and it's almost always in very good condition, having probably been worn only a few times before I pass it on. It's a good way to purge and help a worthy organization, too.



    My sister is a borderline hoarder (none / 0) (#144)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 08:30:06 AM EST
    Not in the house, that is always perfect.  But they must have a half dozen rented storage things in addition to having every out building on the property stuffed to the roof.  I was once at a yard sale with her and she bought three broken weed eaters.  I gave her a look and she said "they were a dollar."

    I have always been the opposite.  I regularly throw or give stuff away that I need or want later.


    Interesting (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:01:44 AM EST
    Turkey's 1500-Year-Old, $28M Bible Linked to Gospel of Barnabas?

    Photocopies of the holy book's pages are reportedly worth about $1.7 million, but the relic isn't so extremely valuable just because of its age, but also because of its construction and its contents. The Bible is handwritten in gold lettering on loosely strung together animal hide and written in Syriac. Syriac is a dialect of Aramaic - Jesus' native language. Aramaic itself is rarely present in today's society, as it is now only spoken in a small village near Damascus.

    The Gospel of Barnabas is not included in the New Testament alongside Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, and in fact Barnabas opposes the New Testament and rather has clear similarities to the Muslim interpretation of Jesus. Barnabas even contains a story in which Jesus predicts the coming of Prophet Muhammad. Muslims believe this original gospel has been suppressed.

    1500 year old bible -Christ was no crucified

    Well, this certainly sounds believable (none / 0) (#47)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:28:53 AM EST
    Jesus was not crucified, instead it says he ascended to heaven alive and Judas Iscariot was crucified in his place.

    As always, pick your myth.


    Heh (none / 0) (#50)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:32:28 AM EST
    In any case, no one around here will pay attention until it is translated to cracker and had all the big words taken out.

    North Korea (none / 0) (#52)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:36:15 AM EST
    Seth Rogen movie an `act of war,'

    SEOUL, South Korea -- North Korea on Wednesday warned against the release of a Hollywood comedy film about a plot to assassinate its leader, Kim Jong Un, calling the movie an "act of war."

    "If the United States administration tacitly approves or supports the release of this film, we will take a decisive and merciless countermeasure," a spokesman for its Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by the state-run Korean Central News Agency.

    This is the Boston Globe not the Onion

    Torrential downpour in Recife this morning (none / 0) (#54)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:40:59 AM EST
    host of today's USA/GER match. Getting to the stadium would be easier by boat. The field itself is dry.

    Good news for the USA...Ghana has suspended Kevin-Prince Boateng from today's game vs Portugal. They also suspended Sulley Muntari but he was ineligible for today's game due to an accumulation of yellow cards.

    No word yet on possible Luis Suarez suspension for Uruguay vs Colombia on Saturday. Rumor is ruling will definitely come down today.

    Ruling on Suarez is in (none / 0) (#55)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:02:26 AM EST
    Uruguay striker Luis Suarez has been suspended for nine international matches and banned from all football activity for four months for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini, FIFA has announced.

    Got off pretty easy... (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:23:49 AM EST
    The Italian reputation for dirty play and beyond the pale trash-talk may have factored in.

    Supreme Court (none / 0) (#58)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:40:25 AM EST
    1. Strikes down "buffer zones" outside abortion clinics,

    2. Strikes down recess appointments made during pro-forma sessions of the Senate.

    The Hobby Lobby contraception opinion will be handed down on Monday,


    It appears (none / 0) (#60)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:51:05 AM EST
    That both decisions today were unanimous (although with lots of concurring opinions).

    Where is BTD? (none / 0) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:35:04 AM EST
    Working for a living or something?


    We are either in or we are out

    Tell me about it... (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:46:43 AM EST
    I'm having a busier day than I've had all June...the mutants pick today of all days to burn up the email/phone/fax?  C'mon man!!!

    At least the 2nd half will fall on my lunch hour...and there's a bar around the corner.

    I've got butterflies like I'm playing or something.  USA! USA! USA! Kill Gerry!


    2 changes to the US lineup... (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:52:37 AM EST
    from the Portugal game...Gonzalez in for Cameron, Davis in for Bedoya.

    Not sure I like the backline change...aside from the one bad clearance against Portugal, Cameron has been money.  Gonzalez has shown a tendency to brainfart.  Maybe it's a fresh leg thing due to the short rest after the Manaus sauna.


    I should be really tired today from so much (none / 0) (#69)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 11:12:36 AM EST
    Travel, but lots of energy :). Hanging with you kdog

    Gonzalez just beat the center at goal (none / 0) (#70)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 11:14:43 AM EST
    Okay so far

    RIP Howard Baker (none / 0) (#75)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 12:48:54 PM EST
    "What did the president know and when did he know it?"

    Very well may be the last Republican I (5.00 / 3) (#76)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 01:10:44 PM EST
    admired. I was glued to the televised hearings that summer. RIP, Sen Baker, you really showed this teenager the meaning of integrity.

    Indeed (none / 0) (#77)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 01:13:42 PM EST
    More than a little scary to try to imagine those times with the crop we have now.   Nixon would still be president like in Watchmen.

    I think we were glued to ... (none / 0) (#80)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 02:43:30 PM EST
    ... to the Watergate hearings in '73 because cable TV was then in its infancy and few people had it, so our viewing choices were limited. All the networks were carrying them, so there was nothing else on.

    Still, as televised hearings go, it made for some riveting theatre. If there can be political heroes, the members of that Senate select committee would certainly qualify as such. Howard Baker's rhetorical question -- What did the president know, and when did he know it?" -- cut to the very heart of the matter.

    I remember sitting in my grandparents' den when Alexander Butterfield disclosed to the committee that President Nixon had wired his own office with voice-activated recording devices, and had taped everything from the beginning of his presidency. That's when the trap door under his administration opened.

    Afterward, one of my older cousins, who was 15 at the time, asked my grandfather what Butterfield's disclosure meant. "It means," my grandfather replied with a sigh, "that President Nixon cut his own throat."



    That Butterfield moment (none / 0) (#81)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 02:55:12 PM EST
    is one I remember because it was one of the few days I missed - I remember where I was though - I had gone swimming with a friend. I could have kicked myself when I got home! No constant replays of stuff in those days either.

    I can't say that at my house we watched the hearings for lack of anything better to do or watch. We always had plenty to do, but they were really riveting hearings. Swimming was a rare treat - my friend's family belonged to a 'swim club' (midwestern kind of country club thing with a couple of nice pools and that's it - no golf, etc.) and she had a few guest passes every summer she could use to take me. So saying no because I wanted to watch Watergate hearings would have been pretty horrible.


    I was on a boat when that happened (none / 0) (#83)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:08:49 PM EST
    Where we worked 6 hour shifts. I was out on the barges working during that testimony and my buddy on the other watch told me when we came in to eat.

    Watergate geek pop quiz (none / 0) (#85)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:17:41 PM EST
    March 21, 1973.

    what pops into your head?


    That whole year is a bit of a blur (none / 0) (#88)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:32:21 PM EST
    I worked a lot that year.  Boats.  I remember because I had spent the previous year in NYC, there for the presidential election, and the following spring I was planning to do the backpacking through Europe thing.
    I was probably on a boat.

    "There's a cancer on the presidency." (none / 0) (#90)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:34:44 PM EST
    John Dean levels with Richard Nixon about the Watergate scandal.

    Here's one for you -- Dec. 8, 1972.


    Heh (none / 0) (#95)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 04:02:29 PM EST
    There are only two date/times I remember exactly what I was doing.  One is the Kennedy assassination and the other was the 1969 moon walk.
    With the tv on in the background and her parents out for the evening watching the landing with friends "one small step for man" was uttered while I was getting to home base for the very first time.
    That's not the kind if thing you forget.

    Bingo! I had all the dates in Dean's testimony (none / 0) (#100)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:14:26 PM EST
    memorized at one point. That one has stuck with me all these years.

    Dec 8' 72.......formation of CREEP?


    No. This was after the '72 election. (5.00 / 1) (#104)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:30:18 PM EST
    ruffian: "Dec 8' 72.......formation of CREEP?"

    On December 8, 1972, United Airlines No. 553 crashed on final approach to Chicago-Midway Airport on a flight from Washington's National Airport. 45 people were killed in the tragedy, 43 on the plane and two on the ground. The accident also marked the very first crash of a B-737 airliner.

    As investigators combed through the plane's wreckage during the recovery phase of the rescue operation, they discovered that one of the 43 victims on United 553 was a middle-aged woman who had been carrying $10,000 cash -- 100 one-hundred dollar bills -- in her purse. Further, inside a small briefcase next to her body was more than $2 million in negotiable securities.

    The deceased woman was Dorothy Hunt, wife of Watergate burglar E. Howard Hunt. And because Mr. Hunt had been blackmailing the White House since his arrest, Mrs. Hunt had apparently gone to Washington to pick up one of the payments from White House operatives -- at least, that's according to Mr. Hunt's colleague in the Watergate burglary, James W. McCord, Jr. And that $2-plus million in negotiable securities were traced to the Committee to Re-Elect the President, CREEP.

    (So, you get five points for mentioning CREEP. It has also been further speculated that Mrs. Hunt was acting as middleman for not only her husband, but the other Watergate burglars as well, and that the funds she was carrying were to provide them with money and cover their legal expenses. Given that most of the participants are now deceased, we'll probably never know for sure.)

    While Watergate conspiracy theorists continue to attribute the crash of United 553 to a CIA plot to kill Dorothy Hunt as a warning to her husband, the NTSB's official findings concluded that it was actually the result of pilot and tower error.

    It had been a cloudy winter day in Chicago with very low visibility, which caused both the captain and Midway air traffic controllers to misjudge United 553's actual position southeast of Midway Airport. (Radar in '72 wasn't nearly what it is today.) Because the captain apparently thought they were closer to the airfield than they really were, he extended the B-737's spoilers too early. As a result, the plane entered final approach at too slow a speed, which in turn accelerated its descent at a rate faster than anticipated.

    When United 553 emerged from the low clouds at about 500 feet elevation, air traffic controllers realized that the aircraft was actually two miles short of Midway Airport's Runway 31L, rather than only several city blocks away. They immediately ordered United 553 to abort its landing attempt and circle around for another approach.

    For his part, the plane's captain also saw his mistake, and attempted to rectify the situation by engaging full throttle to increase air speed and gain lift. But with its flaps fully extended for landing, the aircraft instead went into a fatal stall, and plunged into the 3700 block of W. 70th Place near Marquette Park, a half-block from both Hurley Elementary School and Queen of the Universe Catholic School, each of which was in session at the time.

    Thus, we can also attribute pilot error on United 553 to the subsequent tangential discovery of the Nixon White House's then-ongoing effort to buy the silence of the Watergate burglars.



    No wait, wrong her. You stumped me! (none / 0) (#102)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:24:46 PM EST
    Was that when he got called... (none / 0) (#122)
    by unitron on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:26:13 PM EST
    ...a Cox-shucker?

    David Sirota fired from Pando (none / 0) (#78)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 02:38:07 PM EST
    From the 'death of all hope' file....David Sirota fired from Pando, reportedly due to investor concerns about too much politics, not enough tech.

    I guess that is one more website I will EVER visit again.

    make that NEVER (5.00 / 1) (#79)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 02:38:18 PM EST
    That's what can happen when ... (none / 0) (#82)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:08:19 PM EST
    ... you have to depend upon and answer to investors. Even if it's a company you founded and nurtured, if you're not the majority owner, you have to answer to investors, or you can be dumped quite unceremoniously -- as Dov Charney of American Apparel discovered this week.

    I sometimes wonder how much different might Bob Woodward's and Carl Bernstein's Watergate investigation have turned out, had the Washington Post been publicly owned at the time and not under the control of owner / publisher Katherine Graham, who stood by her young reporters and their work. As it was, she initially took a big hit financially when advertisers started pulling out under severe White House pressure.

    Alas, Pando apparently didn't have that advantage. I don't worry about David Sirota and Ted Rall, though. Their respective talent and resumes speak for themselves, and I suspect that they'll be snapped up in short order by someone else who's eager to add them to their roster and feature their work.



    I just fear that no-holds-barred (5.00 / 2) (#84)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:12:31 PM EST
    investigative reporting is always going to make some investors squeamish. Very few independent outlets these days. Don't want all the reporters at the same outlet either - that can lead to groupthink even in the best of them.

    That Gawker article... (none / 0) (#127)
    by unitron on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:30:27 PM EST
    ...has been updated, with a statement from Carr, which includes this:

    To be clear: any suggestion that investors have any impact -- ever -- on which writers we hire or fire, or what we write, is 100% false.

    Fraternal birth order and male sexual orientation (none / 0) (#87)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:23:18 PM EST
    Ok, I remember reading this a few years ago and in spite of having two older brothers not putting much stock in it.
    I am beginning to change my mind.  I just found out that I have yet another gay nephew.   I guess there are punchy male chromosomes in my family because out of 18 grand children of my generation there are two girls.  
    That means in several cases there are three boys.  I knew two of those cases had produced that which dare not speak it's name.  I just found out there's is a third.  That's makes, just in my family, four cases out of five, so far, where the third son has turned out gay.

    My sister just said, you know they all blame you, right?

    A correlation between fraternal birth order and male sexual orientation has been suggested by research. Ray Blanchard identified the association and referred to it as the fraternal birth order effect. In several studies, the observation is that the more older brothers a man has, the greater the probability is that he will have a homosexual orientation.[1] It has sometimes been called the older brother effect. It has been estimated that 15% of the homosexual demographic is associated with fraternal birth order.[2]

    The fraternal birth order effect is the strongest known biodemographic predictor of a male's sexual orientation.[3] According to several studies, each older brother increases a man's odds of having a homosexual orientation by 28-48%.[4][5][6][7][8] The fraternal birth order effect accounts for approximately one seventh of the prevalence of homosexuality in men.[9] There seems to be no effect on sexual orientation in women, and no effect related to the number of older sisters.[10][11]

    The fraternal birth order effect has also been observed among male-to-female transsexuals: MtF transsexuals who are sexually interested in men have a greater number of older brothers than MtF transsexuals who are sexually interested in women. This has been reported in samples from Canada,[12] the United Kingdom,[13] the Netherlands,[14] and Polynesia.[15]

    The effect has been found even in males not raised with their biological brothers, suggesting an in-utero environmental causation.[3] To explain this finding, a maternal immune response has been hypothesized.[16] Male fetuses produce H-Y antigens which may be involved in the sexual differentiation of vertebrates.[16] Other studies have suggested the influence of birth order was not due to a biological, but a social process.[17]

    The so-called fraternal birth order effect is small: Each older brother increases the chances by 33%. Assuming the base rate of homosexuality among men is 2%, it would take 11 older brothers to give the next son about a 50-50 chance of being gay.
    My nephew is gay and he's the eldest child, my buddy is the 3rd male child and both of this older bros are gay.

    Well I admit (none / 0) (#92)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:47:51 PM EST
    I like the idea of being a blight on my particular family tree.  But fwiw my best friend has three older brothers.  He and the one closest to him in age are gay.

    I like the idea of being a blight (none / 0) (#97)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 04:44:25 PM EST
    I like the idea of being a blight on my particular family tree.



    But of course (none / 0) (#93)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 03:49:06 PM EST
    I could also name many cases of this not being true.  

    Small yes! but this factor present in (none / 0) (#101)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:21:01 PM EST
    15% of gay male population is fascinating to me. Some interesting bio-chemistry going on there. Wish I were a researcher!

    There really (none / 0) (#103)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:28:11 PM EST
    Interesting stuff to google.  Something about the mothers immune system?  Also read that age of the mother can be a factor.  My mother was 40 when I was born.  I was not expected.  My friend I mentioned was also born even later in his mothers life with his older brother coming at about 35.

    The mean age for first-time mothers in that country is 30.5 years. It's almost the same in Britain.

    And in our country, the mean age of mothers at any birth crossed the 30-year-old threshold a few years ago. In the western world, a lot of women are delaying pregnancy until they're in the thirties.



    I meant a factor in the whole fraternal (none / 0) (#141)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 08:11:11 AM EST
    Birth order thing.  That said -

    Australia has been referred to by publications as one of the most gay friendly countries in the world, with recent polls indicating that a majority of Australians support same-sex marriage.[11] A 2013 poll conducted by Pew Research indicated that 79% of Australians viewed that homosexuality should be accepted by society, making it the fifth most supportive country in the world behind Czech Republic, Canada, Germany and Spain, which ranked first.[12][13] Because of its long history in regard to LGBT rights and its annual three-week long Mardi Gras festival, Sydney has been named one of the most gay friendly cities in the country and in the world.[14]

    Well, no wonder, with ... (none / 0) (#160)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 12:08:51 PM EST
    ... all those older mothers having gay babies and all!

    I am visualizing (none / 0) (#161)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 12:13:42 PM EST
    Designer diapers and Limoges sippy cups

    " I knew two of those cases had produced... (none / 0) (#119)
    by unitron on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:16:25 PM EST
    ...that which dare not speak it's name."

    Republican sympathies?

    : - )


    Not really (none / 0) (#126)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:29:35 PM EST
    That was just sort of an Oscar Wilde joke.  Are you kidding.  I was joking the other day that my flamboyant teenage nephew was posting on Facebook that he wanted a "top man and a fabulous shopping spree" for his birthday.

    His FaceBook that is seen by ALL my bible thumping fundie relatives.

    They never shut the fu@k up.   And my sister says everyone thinks it's all my fault.  

    Ahhhhhhh, legacy.


    I just figured it out... (none / 0) (#137)
    by unitron on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 02:18:45 AM EST
    ...it's evolution as directed by the will of the God of the OT with an eye towards the coming of the Roman Catholic church.

    Oldest son inherits. Has to be able to father children (preferably sons) to continue the line.

    Second son is a backup, otherwise can be professional military (physically and mentally equipped for a little rape and DNA spreading to go with all of that plunder) while first son runs whatever the equivalent of a plantation is in Samaria and Judea.

    Third son gets to be celibate priest, sex drive re-routed so he doesn't get anyone pregnant if he breaks celibacy vow.


    If I'm supposed to be (none / 0) (#140)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 07:57:05 AM EST
    The celibate priest it's fortunate for everyone he is the God of Off Topic

    If 'Game Of Thrones' Were Made On An '80s VHS (none / 0) (#98)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 04:50:27 PM EST
    It Would Be Like This

    Especially love the 3D flying logo at the beginning.  Which is how I made a living all through the 80s

    Ha! I love the character credits. Especially Arya (none / 0) (#105)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:38:14 PM EST
    before and after. And of course at the end- Hodor!

    That's great (none / 0) (#106)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 06:42:44 PM EST
    Dallas?  Dynasty? Ohhhhh Game of Thrones

    The ganache for the truffles is still chillin (none / 0) (#107)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 07:31:52 PM EST
    Came out beautiful.  Josh and I did get to eat at Stoney Creek Steakhouse in Atlanta, very yummy.  Tried 'The Prisoner' red blend there, delicious.  Looking for someone local who carries it, what a depressing looking label for such delicious wine.

    Well, better that, than being seduced by ... (none / 0) (#112)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:49:16 PM EST
    Militarytracy: "[W]hat a depressing looking label for such delicious wine."

    ... a great-looking label that masks a truly ghastly wine.

    If you can't find a local distributor for The Prisoner Wine Co. -- and given your many descriptions of your present locale, I harbor serious doubts as to whether its permanent residents could tell the difference between chardonnay and a urine sample -- you can always order their product online.



    We really need a loooong (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:51:43 PM EST
    History of the avocado upthread

    I'm busy right now. (5.00 / 2) (#130)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:39:55 PM EST
    You'll have to settle for a short history of guacamole.

    I could Donald if I didn't live in Alabama (none / 0) (#115)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:01:21 PM EST
    There will be no wine shipped to Alabama residents....*sniffle *

    That's terrible! (5.00 / 1) (#129)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:37:33 PM EST
    Laws like that are a pretty good indication that the Alabama State Legislature is in the hip pocket of your local liquor wholesalers and distributors.

    Not that I'm going to look, but I'd bet that if I did, I'd discover that there are probably no more than four or five wholesalers / distributors statewide, and that they've probably divvied up the market between them.

    That's not uncommon in politically backward places.


    When I lived in Atlanta (5.00 / 1) (#131)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:42:07 PM EST
    From 2005-7 you couldn't buy liquor in Sunday.
    In freakin Atlanta.  You can now.

    We can't have tap beer either in Enterprise (none / 0) (#132)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:50:12 PM EST
    The legislature did vote to allow us, but the paperwork has been waiting for the governors signature for months now.  Still no alcohol sold or served on Sundays though.

    ... employed to limit competition in small states like Kansas, Alabama and South Carolina is to provide in one section of statute that the sale of beer at the wholesale level is open to all qualified distributors, but then define "qualified distributor" in another section of statute as a wholesaler whose annual production must exceed 10,000 barrels, or retains the capacity to sell the equivalent of 19,000 barrels within the state itself.

    That eliminates all microbrews, discourages potential small market or specialty brewers like Samuel Adams from even attempting to compete locally, and monopolizes the market for Anheuser-Busch, Miller Brewing Co. and Coors.

    That's what always cracks me up about Republicans who babble constantly about letting the free market decide, because in practice in those states where they hold the reins of power, their public policies governing their state's commercial and retail sectors are often anything but free market-oriented.

    That's not to suggest that Democrats are immune to the entreaties of big business and corporations, because we're most certainly not. But generally, I think we're far more open-minded about the prospect of fostering real competition in the commercial and retail sectors, than are our GOP counterparts.



    And you are correct as to how many (none / 0) (#133)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:52:14 PM EST
    Distributors there are for the state...at least where wine comes in

    I've worked in legislatures long enough ... (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 10:07:03 PM EST
    ... to identify the benchmarks of tacit quid pro quo. It's basically legalized corruption. We had the same problem out here in the islands with liquor distributors until we fixed it in 1998 -- prior to that, there were only two, Eagle Distributors and Paradise Beverages. There's no incentive for you to modernize or change when the legislature's allowed you to corral the entire market.

    Really? WTF (none / 0) (#117)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:10:22 PM EST
    No wine in the mail, no lottery (none / 0) (#120)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:23:17 PM EST
    No vibrators in the mail either, you can't even buy that Trojan Twister thing in the state of Alabama. That's why I'm so pure.

    You CAN buy enough "fireworks" in Alabama though to level your own neighborhood :)


    And I'm (none / 0) (#124)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:27:11 PM EST
    sure enough ammo to mow down your entire neighborhood. We have some very strange values down here in the south I have decided. Murder and violence is good. Anything having to do with sex is evil.

    It's an odd state :) (none / 0) (#125)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:28:39 PM EST
    OMG (none / 0) (#128)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:31:15 PM EST
    That only funny because I don't live there.  

    Yes (none / 0) (#114)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 08:55:30 PM EST
    that is a very good restaurant. Are you here for doctor's appointments?

    We were, check up (none / 0) (#116)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:06:28 PM EST
    They are going to remove Josh's titanium Veptor system soon, so we will be hanging out in your area for awhile in about a month.

    It is a little scary, but also passing a milestone.  Josh's doctor recommended Stoney Creek as a good place to celebrate since the graduate likes steak.


    Good. (5.00 / 2) (#121)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:25:24 PM EST
    I will open up an email account and put it on the info here and maybe we can have lunch or something. I'm really a nice person despite the person I play here on TalkLeft! LOL

    Wish I was still around to join you (5.00 / 1) (#142)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 08:14:20 AM EST
    We need to organize a New York meet up (5.00 / 1) (#148)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:32:02 AM EST
    We really do.  I can get a decent rate at the Soldiers and Sailors in Manhattan.  It's spartan :). But as rates go up in Manhattan we will never be completely shut out.  Ruffian and I got a decent rate at the Manhattan Broadway, it is being remodeled though.

    We need to start planning.


    Georgia is a fine meetup place to! (5.00 / 1) (#153)
    by ruffian on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:57:24 AM EST
    I'm sure we could entertain ourselves just fine.

    We could! (none / 0) (#155)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 10:13:30 AM EST
    When does Bruce play Atlanta again?  So many good opportunities in Atlanta as well to meet and have fun.

    I'd likely opt for the symphoy post RatDog. (5.00 / 1) (#157)
    by oculus on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 11:05:16 AM EST
    Midtown Music Festival... (5.00 / 1) (#159)
    by kdog on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 11:13:57 AM EST
    in Hotlanta is a good time...this year's goes down September 19th & 20th.  Jack F*ckin' White in the house!

    Haha (5.00 / 1) (#150)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:33:41 AM EST
    yes, I would love to meet you in person.

    We would love to lunch with you :) (none / 0) (#123)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 26, 2014 at 09:26:13 PM EST
    Stoney Creek or Stoney River? (none / 0) (#143)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 08:15:54 AM EST
    We have a Stoney River here, which is why I ask.  Last November, we took the family there - including our then-11 month old grandson, who behaved so well I doubt the people sitting near us even knew there was a baby at the table - to celebrate our son-in-law's birthday and had a great time - food was great, wine was delish.

    Will definitely go back - and I'll make sure to try the wine you liked so much!


    Oops, it was Stoney River :) (none / 0) (#145)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 08:53:38 AM EST
    Creek...River, frying pan...skillet :)

    I had the medallions, wonderful. Josh had the New York with fries and it was perfect too for a young man who loves steak.  We hope to take Mr. when he returns home.

    What a sweet grandson


    Bowe Bergdahl has been cleared of misconduct (none / 0) (#146)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:01:46 AM EST
    While being held by the Taliban.  Hopefully this dispels the myth that he aided the Taliban in building a more perfect IED....awful rumor to spread with zero evidence.


    With that finding many oldsters in the military are speculating that if he did walk away from his post willfully intending to not return, that the leadership will find the five year ordeal that followed punishment enough.

    I think (none / 0) (#149)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:32:48 AM EST
    it actually would be hard to determine whether he willfully walked away or not considering the fact that he had wandered off before and came back.

    Lots of things to look at (none / 0) (#151)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:49:41 AM EST
    Was his anti-malaria medication causing him psychiatric problems?  That stuff has done some very strange things to people.  It has some awful side effects.  For my spouse nobody stood there and watched him take it so he did not take his as well as most he served with.  He told me he thought he would rather have malaria :)

    They can and likely will charge him with something, but his time as a POW will be counted as time served.

    Will he forfeit his back pay though?  It's quite a chunk of change.


    I'm sure (5.00 / 1) (#152)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:54:29 AM EST
    you know more about this type of thing than I do. I just hope he goes home and is with his family though I truly wonder about the lasting damage he is going to have and his family is going to be left to deal with. Heartbraking.

    PS put an email address in my info. So just let me know when you're planning on coming to Atlanta. Love to meet people in person after "talking" to them on blogs for quite a while.


    He has not spoken to his (none / 0) (#154)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:58:31 AM EST
    Parents yet.  I am glad they are focused on his healing and well being to the degree they are.  I will send you a message.

    The GOS (none / 0) (#147)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 09:30:38 AM EST
    has returned to the fevered swamp of 2008 it would seem.

    The Case Against 8 (none / 0) (#158)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 11:13:41 AM EST
    DVRed this a while back but just got around to watching it

    It's really something.  I think watching it would make anyone who cares about this issue feel just a bit better about the world.

    Incredible. We are Egypt: (none / 0) (#162)
    by oculus on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 12:48:25 PM EST

    Mr. Nashiri was waterboarded, and as Carol Rosenberg noted in her account of the new ruling for The Miami Herald, a C.I.A. inspector general's report found that agents interrogated him "while he was nude and that they threatened him with a revving power drill, handgun and threats to sexually assault his mother."

    NYT Op Ed

    Incredible (none / 0) (#165)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Jun 27, 2014 at 03:09:46 PM EST
    Is a good word