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The place where the world comes together in honesty and mirth.
Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

More Americans believe in angels than humans’ role in global warming

This is sad ...

More Americans believe in guardian angels than humans’ role in global warming, according to recent polls.

A Pew poll released late last month found that just 36 percent of Americans believe humans are responsible for accelerating global climate change, which scientists say mushroomed after the industrial revolution due to humans’ dependence on carbon-based fuels. [...]

The 36 percent who believe in human-caused climate change is fewer than the number of Americans who apparently believe they’re protected by guardian angels, some 55 percent, according to a poll published in 2008. [...]

That’s not all. A blog at the website of Foreign Policy notes that more Americans believe in UFOs and ghosts than do anthropogenic (human-caused) global warming.

More Americans believe in angels than humans’ role in global warming

Sarah Palin climate change op ed

John Aravosis had this to say:

I'll join in too. What are Palin's credentials for having anything to say at all on Climate Change? She's not the leader of the Republican party. She's not even a politician anymore. So, other than being a proven intellectual lightweight who wants to be president, what credentials does she have for the Washington Post to accept an op ed from her on this topic?

And another thing. I know for a fact that the Washington Post has published ghost written op eds in the past. But I'm not aware of them ever having published one that didn't at least pass the laugh test of credibility. Does anyone in their right mind actually believe for a moment that Sarah Palin knows the difference between the Chinese and Indian climate change proposals? Get real.

Much more over at Huffington Post.


Get real indeed.

Legalization of immigrants beneficial

Millions of undocumented people in the U.S. should be given a path to legal status after the country finds a way to stop illegal immigration, business and government leaders said in a report released Wednesday.

Legalization of immigrants beneficial

Five U.S. men arrested in Pakistan

Five American men were arrested in Pakistan this week and are being investigated for alleged links to extremist groups, the Pakistani embassy in Washington said on Wednesday.

Five U.S. men arrested in Pakistan

The female factor

Sound Familiar?

A sure indicator of a political party's desperation is when it trots out a woman to take it to the polls.

The female factor

Science News

From BBC-Science:
Gibraltar strait
Research reveals details of a catastrophic flood that refilled the Mediterranean Sea more than five million years ago.

Pell Grant program faces shortfall

The Pell Grant program for needy college students is facing a massive shortfall as the country's bleak job market drives people back to school.

Pell Grant program faces shortfall

House votes to extend $31B in expiring tax breaks

The House voted Wednesday to extend $31 billion in popular tax breaks, including an income tax deduction for sales and property taxes, to be financed with a tax increase on investment fund managers and a crackdown on international tax cheats.

Shark and Octopus

What happens when a shark and a octopus share and aquarium tank?
Well, what do you know.

Disney's darkest movie villains

Disney's darkest movie villains

"The Princess and the Frog's" villain is one of the studio's best big-screen baddies.

Degrees more expensive, worth less

Degrees more expensive, worth less

The soft job market isn't the only problem dogging debt-burdened college graduates.

Ways grooming can ruin a job interview

9 ways grooming can ruin a job interview

Overdone hair can be a sign you're high-maintenance and out of touch.

House flipping makes surprise comeback

House flipping makes surprise comeback

A controversial practice of the housing bubble resurfaces as buyers pounce on bargains.

Soldier reunited with adopted puppy

Soldier reunited with adopted puppy

Cpl. Michael Lemmons thought he would never see his pet Ally after he left Afghanistan.

The real cost of your holiday presents

The real cost of your holiday presents

A surprising percentage of the cash we spend on gifts is wasted money, experts say.

What your xmas fave says about you

What your xmas fave says about you

The holiday classics can reveal intriguing insights into someone's personality.

Signs you may be boring someone

8 signs you may be boring someone

Most people are too polite to yawn, but they can give off other subtle clues.

Biggest complaints about Windows 7

10 biggest complaints about Windows 7

While most customers prefer Windows 7 over Vista, a whopping 31% of clients report finding bugs.

Can special shoes firm the body?

Can special shoes firm the body?

New types of shoes promise toned legs or better posture — just from wearing them.

Things food experts won't eat

7 things food experts won't eat

Conventional apples and non-organic milk are two foods the pros say they wouldn't touch.

And I Quote

Etiquette requires us to admire the human race.

~ Mark Twain

STFU Cheney

On MSNBC's "Hardball" Wednesday night, Rep. Alan Grayson had a succinct response to Dick Cheney's recent comments on President Obama: STFU.

Grayson To Cheney: 'STFU'

Gourmet Marijuana Restaurant Opens In Colorado

The owner of Ganja Gourmet said the restaurant will "aim to help distribute medicinal marijuana to those licensed to have it and provide an atmosphere where patients can visit with one another in a safe environment."

Gourmet Marijuana Restaurant Opens In Colorado

Dumb Drunks

From the "They walk among us" Department:

Woman accused of being intoxicated on horse in a Christmas parade in TennesseeRead the original story

A woman has posted $500 bond on a charge of public intoxication after police said she passed out on a horse she rode in the Shelbyville Christmas parade.

Wisconsin man gets year in jail for urinating on police officer during drunken driving arrestRead the original story

A Waldo man accused of urinating on a police officer during his fifth drunken-driving arrest has been sentenced to a year in jail.

Blue Lights Spiraling over Norway

Strange spiral: Residents in northern Norway were left stunned after the lightshow, which almost looked computer-generated, appeared in the skies above them
Follow the link above for a video and here for more still shots and more details.

Girl licks pole in 10 degree weather; gets tongue stuck

It was a boy the other day ... now a girl has done it

Remember that scene in the movie, "A Christmas Story" where the little boy gets his tongue frozen to a metal pole? Well it's happened to a 13-year-old ...

Girl licks pole in 10 degree weather; gets tongue stuck

What is it with 13-year-olds and cold weather and poles?

Cigarettes kill, but don't tell smokers?

Cigarette pack warnings that remind smokers of the fatal consequences of their habit may actually make them smoke more as a way to cope with the inevitability of death, according to researchers.

Cigarettes kill, but don't tell smokers?

Nutjobs are world wide it seems

The teabaggers and anti-change crowd may have found their soul mates in Australia.

Even faced reality, they still deny the world around them.
Of course, plenty of the deniers also are more than happy to accept government handouts to keep going.

To save the Murray River, though, the government has moved quickly and aggressively. Without partisan bickering, politicians have set aside $11.8 billion for a science-backed program that, among other things, pays irrigators not to suck the river dry.

Yet along the Murray, there is a climate-change conundrum that responsible politicians and smart scientists have yet to solve: Most farmers, the biggest losers as the river shrinks, simply do not buy the notion that southern Australia's climate is changing in a way that is probably irreversible. Their skepticism has withstood nearly 13 years of unrelenting drought, falling incomes and daily encounters with a river that is dying in front of their eyes.
Not the term we'd use.

This is scary

From USA Today:
In the past three years, the government has provided the nation's schools with millions of pounds of beef and chicken that wouldn't meet the quality or safety standards of many fast-food restaurants, from Jack in the Box and other burger places to chicken chains such as KFC, a USA TODAY investigation found.

Rules for Dealing with the Police

Flex Your Rights is taking orders for its DVD, 10 Rules for Dealing with the Police. Price is $15.

Through extensive collaboration with victims of police abuse, legal experts and law enforcement professionals, we’ve developed a powerful multi-language (English, Spanish & Arabic) resource that provides proven survival strategies for dealing with racial profiling and police abuse.

Topics Include...

• Dealing with a traffic stop
• Dealing with police on the street
• Dealing with police at your door
• How to maintain your cool and protect your rights
• How to avoid common police tricks
• How to file a complaint that gets results

(Flex Your Rights materials are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.)

Helping Poor Nations Switch to Clean Energy Could Bring a $100 Billion Renewable Boom

From Treehugger as well:

100 billion solar poor photo
Photo via MGX

Two of the key questions in negotiating a global climate treaty in Copenhagen right now is how much funding rich nations should be giving industrializing ones to help them develop and produce clean energy. Rich nations like the US and many in the EU got to industrialize powered by coal and oil, so if we want them to develop with cleaner power, then we should be willing to lend a hand, right? Of course, this gets cast as a dire hurdle by the media--the New York Times' headline warns Climate Deal Likely to Bear Big Price Tag. But this is the wrong way to think about it. In fact, some studies have suggested that investing in renewable energy in developing countries could lead to a $100 billion boom in the solar industry.

Scientists Looking for Cure to Alzheimer's Invent Self-Cleaning Solar Panels

From Treehugger:

self-cleaning solar panels photo

From Bionanotech to Cleantech

A group of researchers under professor. Ehud Gazit (pictured above) at the Tel Aviv University were looking for a cure for Alzheimer's Disease when they discovered a new way to get peptides to self-assemble at high-temperatures in a vacuum. The resulting structure, pictured above, had some interesting physical properties that could make it useful not only for solar energy production, but also for electric car batteries. Read on for more details.

And I Quote

The secret to humor is surprise.

~ Aristotle

Another repugican bites it

From the Village Voice...

Jack Chartier, the chief of staff to the New York state comptroller with influence over billions in state pension funds, fell hard for aging actress Peggy Lipton (Mod Squad).

Since Chartier, 64, started confessing to Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's investigators about how he abused his office in order to better impress Lipton, at least five powerful figures have been forced to plead guilty to crimes involving the pension fund. Those admitting felonies so far include the former leader of the state's Liberal Party, a Texas hedge-fund manager, a hugely successful investment adviser, and a pension fund broker.

The latest victim is the biggest catch yet: Elliott Broidy, 52, is the former national finance committee chairman of the Republican National Committee and a personal friend of George W. Bush. Broidy was such a generous and prolific giver that he qualified as a "Super Ranger" on Bush's fundraising team, a designation for those ponying up $300,000-plus.
All told, according to Broidy's own confession last week to Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Lewis Bart Stone, he paid some $1 million to help grease the way for a quarter-billion-dollar state investment into his Markstone Capital Group.
As Broidy told the judge, all of these payments were made in pursuit of the end goal of persuading top officials in the comptroller's office to violate their sworn fiduciary duty as protectors of the immense $116 billion state pension funds.
Cockatoo reacts to another repugican biting the dust.

How to live debt-free without credit cards

How to live debt-free without credit cards

Five families share how they got rid of their credit cards and are living on cash only.

Security flub exposes TSA secrets

We posted a piece on this yesterday but today we have art.

Security flub exposes TSA secrets

A document posted online by the federal government could give insight into how to sidestep security.

Recession finally hits McDonald's

Recession finally hits McDonald's

Even the famous Dollar Menu can't save the world's largest burger chain.

'Extremely dangerous' blizzards push east

'Extremely dangerous' blizzards push east

Fierce winter weather closes schools and leaves 15-foot snowdrifts in its wake.

Hubble looks deeper into the cosmos

The Hubble Space Telescope has taken advantage of its beefed-up hardware to peer deep into the universe, spotting galaxies that existed just 600 million years or so after the big bang.

Full Story

WWII veteran had Hitler's art book on bookshelf

After fighting his way across Europe during World War II, John Pistone was among the U.S. soldiers who entered Adolf Hitler's home nestled in the Bavarian Alps as the war came to a close.

Baby Alligator, Snakes Found in University Dorm

You know this was in Arkansas, right.

A baby alligator, a diamondback rattlesnake, six pythons and three chameleons have been found in a University of Arkansas dorm room.

World's Smallest Orchid

At only 2 millimeters across, this is the world's smallest orchid. EcoMinga ecologist Lou Jost collected a different plant in Ecuador and later found this tiny orchid hidden in the roots.

From National Geographic:
 News 2009 12 Images 091203-Worlds-Smallest-Orchid-Picture BigThe newfound orchid, part of the Platystele genus, hasn't yet had the type of scientific review that would lead to its official designation as a new species. But, Jost said, orchid expert Carl Luer, a researcher affiliated with the Missouri Botanical Garden, agrees that the plant is a unique species.

The bloom has, for now, no name. "It's just sitting here with lots of others that need to be described," Jost said. "These forests are just filled with new things."

Man sues Church of Scientology for enslaving him as a child

A man claims the Church of Scientology forced him to work as a “virtual slave” for 16 years at jobs ranging from washing pots and pans to restoring old films produced by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. John Lindstein says he was kept “busy, poor, tired, and uninformed” by Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige at the church’s ranch in Hemet, and feared that “things would get even worse if he did not work as ordered.”

Lindstein’s Superior Court complaint alleges human trafficking and violations of hour and wage laws at the church’s “Gold Ranch” compound near Hemet, a semirural area east-southeast of Los Angeles.

Lindstein says that from 1990 until 2006, starting when he was just 8 years old, he “performed this work as a virtual slave, working 16 to 24 hours days with no sleep, no time off and no personal freedom” at Gold Base, a mysterious and once-secret headquarters that “resembles a prison camp,” with razor wire, security guard patrols, surveillance posts and three roll calls each day.

Courthouse News Service

‘Fake fingerprint’ Chinese woman fools Japan controls

A Chinese woman managed to enter Japan illegally by having plastic surgery to alter her fingerprints, thus fooling immigration controls, police claim.

Lin Rong, 27, had previously been deported from Japan for overstaying her visa. She was only discovered when she was arrested on separate charges.

Tokyo police said she had paid $15,000 (£9,000) to have the surgery in China.

It is Japan’s first case of alleged biometric fraud, but police believe the practice may be widespread.

‘Fake fingerprint’ Chinese woman fools Japan controls

Daily Funny

What happens when you sing country and western music backwards?

You get your wife and your job back.

NC Man Pleads Guilty To Selling Bear Gall Bladders

The gall bladders are used in Asian medicine.

NC Man Pleads Guilty To Selling Bear Gall Bladders

Frog embryos listen for bad vibrations to avoid snakes

The eggs of the Central American red-eyed tree frog decode vibrations to distinguish between hungry snakes and torrential rainfall.

Frog embryos listen for bad vibrations to avoid snakes

Science News

Researchers have shown that the methane on Mars is not being deposited by meteorites, but is produced on or within the planet.

Self-help course led to woman’s suicide

An Australian coroner said Tuesday that participation in an intense self-help course led a woman to suffer a psychotic breakdown before she stripped naked and leaped to her death from an office window in front of horrified co-workers.

The coroner’s findings come four years after 34-year-old Rebekah Lawrence’s death in Sydney, providing a sense of relief to family members who had long argued the young woman never would have killed herself if not for her participation in a seminar called The Turning Point. [...]

Turning Point officials acknowledged during inquest hearings in August that the course was intense and included the controversial technique of childhood regressive therapy. Such therapy uses hypnotic techniques designed to emotionally regress people to childlike states so they can confront issues from their past.

Lawrence’s behavior changed as the course progressed, and in the hours before her death, grew particularly childlike, to the point where she could no longer dress herself. Over the span of a few days, she began to forget basic things such as her favorite song, tried to command the family dog with her mind and spoke of a fear of death.

On her last day alive, co-workers recall she became increasingly erratic and placed dozens of calls to Turning Point officials. The normally shy and quiet woman then stripped off her clothes, screamed at and shoved her supervisor, burst into song and dove out the window.

Coroner: Self-help course led to woman’s suicide

Phishing Scam Uses H1N1 Vaccine As Bait

A fraudulent e-mail that references a H1N1 vaccination program is circulating on the Internet, and computer users who respond to the item could become victims of fraud or identity theft.

Full Story

On Faux News, percentages don't add up to 100 and, apparently, 'zero tolerance' means unless we get caught.

Media Matters has busted FAUX News -- again.

Yesterday, during FAUX and Friends, the network provided these misleading numbers on a poll about climate change:

Notice the fuzzy math? This poll adds up to 120%.

Being climate change deniers, the talking heads on Faux and Friends loved those numbers. Media Matters pointed out the error to FAUX, but FAUX denied the mistake.
When confronted with the error, the executive producer of the show, Lauren Patterson, denied any mistake.
120% worth of responses to a poll isn't an error in FAUX world.
And, this was a denial despite the new FAUX "zero tolerance" policy for mistakes.

"Lauren Petterson clearly did not watch the segment in question. Host Steve Doocy agreed with Media Matters’ interpretation seeing as he attempted to add up these numbers as they appeared on air and said “so you get 90 – you got a lot of people.” On Faux News, percentages don't add up to 100 and, apparently, 'zero tolerance' means unless we get caught."
FAUX is on a mission.
Silly facts can't get in its way.
FAUX falsified research to support its views.
What else is new.

Unusual Holidays and Celebrations

Today is Weary Willie Day.

Daily Almanac

Today is Wednesday, Dec. 9, the 343rd day of 2009.

There are 22 days left in the year.

Today In History December 9

Our Readers

Some of our readers today have been in:

Sarina, Ontario, Canada
Biel, Bern, Switzerland
Oldenburg, Niedersachsen, Germany
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
Seoul, Kyonggi-Do, Korea
Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
London, England, United Kingdom

Daily Horoscope

Today's horoscope says:

Right now, you have some tough decisions ahead of you.
Emotions and logic aren't as unrelated as some might think.
Choose carefully, and be judicious before you give your final seal of approval, since your integrity is the glue that holds a complex system together -- namely, yourself!
Being at the center of things merits extra rewards, as your immediate future will surely illustrate.

Will do.