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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.

Monday, December 15, 2014

The Daily Drift

The Fifteenth of our trees of December ...!
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Today in History

1862   Nathan Bedford Forrest crosses the Tennessee River at Clifton with 2,500 men to raid the communications around Vicksburg, Mississippi.  
1862   In New Orleans, Louisiana, Union Major General Benjamin F. Butler turns his command over to Nathaniel Banks. The citizens of New Orleans hold farewell parties for Butler, "The Beast" – but only after he leaves.
1864   The battle at Nashville begins.
1890   As U.S. Army soldiers attempt to arrest Sitting Bull at his cabin in Standing Rock, South Dakota, shooting breaks out and Lt. Bullhead shoots the great Sioux leader.  
1903   The British parliament places a 15-year ban on whale hunting in Norway.  
1920   China wins a place on the League Council; Austria is admitted.  
1924   The Soviet Union warns the United States against repeated entry of ships into Soviet territorial waters.  
1938   Washington sends its fourth note to Berlin demanding amnesty for Jews.
1944   The battle for Luzon begins.
1946   Vietnam leader Ho Chi Minh sends a note to the new French Premier, Leon Blum, asking for peace talks.  
1961   Adolf Eichmann, the former German Gestapo official accused of a major role in the Nazi murder of 6 million Jews, is sentenced by a Jerusalem court to be hanged.  
1965   The United States drops 12 tons of bombs on an industrial center near Haiphong Harbor, North Vietnam.
1967   President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the meat bill in the presence of Upton Sinclair, the author of the controversial book The Jungle.  
1972   The Commonwealth of Australia orders equal pay for women.
1973   The American Psychiatric Association votes 130 to remove homosexuality from its official list of psychiatric disorders.  
1976   The oil tanker MV Argo Merchant causes one of the worst marine oil spills in history when it runs aground near Nantucket, Massachusetts.  
1978   US President Jimmy Carter announces the United States will recognize the People's Republic of China and will sever all relations with Taiwan.
1981   In what is often called the first modern suicide bombing, a suicide car bomb kills 61 people at the Iraqi embassy in Beirut, Lebanon; Iraq's ambassador to Lebanon is among the casualties.  
1993   The Downing Street Declaration, issued jointly by UK and the Republic of Ireland, affirms the UK would transfer Northern Ireland to the Republic of Ireland only if a majority of Northern Ireland's people approved.  
2001   The Leaning Tower of Pisa reopens after an 11-year, $27 million project to fortify it without eliminating its famed lean.  
2005   F-22 Raptor Stealth fighter enters active service with the US Air Force.

Elizabeth Warren Has Shifted Democratic Senate Power To The Liberals

Elizabeth-Warren banking committee
One of the major outcomes that has come from liberals standing together against the government funding bill is that the focus of Democratic Senate power has shifted away from moderates and towards liberals and progressives like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
The Hill offered some insight into what Senator Warren (D-MA) has gained from the clash over the government funding bill,
Peter Ubertaccio, a political science professor at Stonehill College in Massachusetts, who follows Warren’s career, said that this week, Warren demonstrated a better feel for the sentiments of her party than her leadership.

“If she’s able to succeed in the Senate at the expense of her own leadership team — the team that she’s on — it will have the practical impact of moving the center of power away from folks like Schumer and toward her,” he said. “That’s pretty significant for a freshman senator that’s been brought into the leadership.
Between Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Sherrod Brown the liberals are displaying their strength in the Senate. One of the advantages of having a smaller Democratic Senate caucus is that the liberals will now play a larger role. The government funding bill passed the House, but this fact doesn’t mean that it was a loss for liberals. Bernie Sanders is considering a run for the Democratic nomination in 2016. Elizabeth Warren has been promoted to a leadership position in the Democratic caucus.
While some in the media are speculating about what this means for a potential Warren presidential candidacy, a more plausible scenario is emerging where Sen. Warren could some day replace Harry Reid as the Democratic leader/potential Senate Majority Leader. Reid is going to run for another Senate term, but his Senate career is winding down. It is easy to see Warren rising up through the Democratic leadership ranks to become Majority Leader.
The House passage of the government funding bill wasn’t a defeat. The unity of congressional liberals in opposition marked another step forward for the growing strength of the left in Congress.

The repugican Nightmares Come True As Bernie Sanders Gets A Big Promotion In The Senate

bernie sanders budget committee
Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) will be a major thorn in Mitch McConnell’s side after it was announced that he has been promoted to the position of ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee.
The promotion is big for Senator Sanders, and it also means that he is going to have a high profile seat from which to launch his 2016 challenge to Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination.
In a statement, Sanders made it clear that he is going to be battling the Koch billionaires, Wall Street, and bringing attention to the growing problem of income inequality, “I want to thank Senator Reid and the Democratic caucus for the opportunity to serve as the ranking member on the Senate Budget Committee. At a time when the middle class is disappearing and the gap between the rich and everybody else is growing wider, we need a budget which reflects the needs of working families and not Wall Street and the top 1 percent. I look forward to working with Democrats and repugicans on the committee to craft a budget that is fair to all Americans, not just the powerful special interests.”
Sanders has already announced that he will be voting against the government funding bill that the Senate is currently debating, but from his leadership position on the Budget Committee, the Vermont Independent will have the power to give a voice to the 99% of Americans who aren’t wealthy enough to buy access to our political leaders with campaign contributions.
The fact that Sen ator Sanders has been promoted to such an important position is another sign of the growing power of liberals within the Senate Democratic caucus. Bernie Sanders will now be in a position to be a major pain in the neck to the Koch brothers and the repugicans that they fund.
Democrats may have lost their Senate majority, but the promotion of Bernie Sanders is another sign that the left is gearing up for a fight.

Obama Obliterates repugicans Bent On Destroying Obamcare By Getting Them To Fund The Law

President Obama rubbed salt in the repugican wounds by pointing out that the government funding bill that they passed funds Obamacare for another year.
The president said,
obama republicans funded obamacareLet me start by saying a few words about the bill that was passed last night to keep the government open and make sure that our agencies are funded until the fall of next year.
This, by definition, was a compromise bill. This is what’s produced when we have the divided government that the American people voted for. There are a bunch of provisions in this bill that I really do not like. On the other hand, there are provisions in this bill and the basic funding within this bill that allows us to make sure that we continue on the progress in providing health insurance to all Americans; make sure that we continue with our efforts to combat climate change; that we’re able to expand early childhood education that is making a meaningful difference in communities all across the country; that allows us to expand our manufacturing hubs that are contributing to the growth of jobs and the progress that we’ve seen in our economy over the last couple of years.
And so, over all, this legislation allows us to build on the economic progress and the national security progress that is important. Had I been able to draft my own legislation and get it passed without any Republican votes I suspect it would be slightly different. That is not the circumstance we find ourselves in. And I think what the American people very much are looking for is some practical governance and the willingness to compromise, and that’s what this really reflects. So I’m glad it passed the House and am hopeful that it will pass the Senate.
The repugicans didn’t only vote to keep the government funded through September 2015. They also voted to fund Obamacare. The same repugicans who have been telling the people who support them for years that their number one mission is to destroy the Affordable Care Act. These are the same repugicans who also vowed to stop the president’s immigration executive orders, and they didn’t do that either.
The media is obsessed with the “split” between Obama and Nancy Pelosi, but an even bigger story is that repugicans were forced to fund the very thing that they were handed the congressional majority in order to destroy. The bill is far from perfect, but as much as it irritates some liberals, it isn’t nearly as bad as what repugicans did to their own base. Obama scored at least one big win in the government funding bill. The ACA is funded for another year, and the president didn’t hesitate to rub salt in the repugican wound.

House Democrats Call Boehner Out For Taking the Country to The Brink of Catastrophe

boehner-face-2Upon the (seriously) last minute, near miss (219-206) passage of the government funding bill in the House, Democratic Congressional Campaign Chairman (DCCC) Ben Ray Luj├ín released a statement condemning Boehner for once again catering to special interests and his “governing-by-crisis strategy”.
“House repugicans just can’t help themselves. Once again, they took the country to the brink of catastrophe to stack the deck for special interests, continuing the same governing-by-crisis strategy that led to their last disastrous shutdown. House repugicans continue to place special interests and the most extreme right-wing elements of their party ahead of the middle class while using crises as leverage. Boehner and House repugicans keep risking our economic well-being to protect their special interest handouts, and it is the American people who continue to pay the price.”
Once again, John Boehner (r-OH) couldn’t get it done in regular fashion, and even ended up calling a recess earlier today as he tried to get votes together since Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) refused to help him give Wall Street another bailout. Without Pelosi’s help, Boehner is hard pressed to pass anything, as tonight’s squeaker exemplifies.
Congratulations to repugicans for sticking Wall Street giveaways into a funding bill for the government to do essential things. These are the same people who accuse Obamacare of being “political” even though it was deliberated for months on end and passed legally. When repugicans want something, they just stick it on some essential course of unrelated business at the last minute so it can’t be properly debated and the press smiles.
Plenty of Democrats ended up going along with this, pressured into not being responsible for a shutdown of the government as well as the usual Wall Street friendlies. But it was repugicans who stuck in the Wall Street bailout business, and Democrats who fought it.
The bill now moves to the Senate, which will pass a short-term CR, and after debate will pass the government funding bill before the end of the weekend.
Another chaotic, crisis laden vote over what used to be normal course of business — funding the government. This is John Boehner’s legacy.

10 of the Dumbest Things repugican Voters Say

by Allen Clifton
I was talking to my friend about politics (they don’t follow politics much) and we got on the topic of talking points.  Though they were raised in a repugican household, they really aren’t someone I would consider a repugican or a Democrat.  But during this discussion, as they presented some of the “arguments” their family members have presented to them, I couldn’t help but notice all they did was regurgitate one right-wing talking point after another.  Clearly they picked these lines up from their repugican family members.
That’s when it really hit me that being a repugican essentially means you have to learn a whole new kind of coded language in order to speak about specific topics.  Because that’s what these people do.  They concoct these talking points as a better means to manipulate people who don’t like to think for themselves into believing in things that don’t make any sense.
So I decided I would make a list of 10 of the dumbest things I often hear repugicans say.
In no particular order, here we go:
1) Tax cuts create jobs: No, they don’t – demand creates jobs.
2) Same-sex marriage ruins the sanctity of marriage: Actually, divorce did that long ago.
3) Homosexual parents will raise homosexuals children: Fun fact, most homosexuals were raised by heterosexuals.
4) The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun: Actually, the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun is to try to prevent the bad guy from ever gaining access to a gun – universal background checks would have helped out a lot with doing just that.
5) Referring to rich people as job creators: Just because someone has a lot money, doesn’t mean they create jobs.
6) Drill baby drill!: The phrase uttered by individuals who have no idea how the price of oil is determined or how it’s sold on the global market.
7) Climate change is a hoax: Something said by people who’ve either been brainwashed by “facts” that have been funded by the oil industry (the biggest benefactors behind the destruction of our planet) or religious fanatics that believe climate change is caused by dog, not humans.
8) Democrats are the real racists: Can someone remind me which cabal has politicians who question the legality of the Civil Rights Act, voters who proudly fly the Confederate flag, candidates who practically get no voting support from minority groups and has the backing of many members of the KKK and neo-Nazi’s?
9) Socialized health care doesn’t work: Then can someone explain to me why Medicare is extremely popular with seniors and why every country that leads the world in average life expectancy and infant mortality rate has universal health care?
10) We support our troops: The last time I checked, the repugican cabal sent over 4,000 American troops to die in Iraq based on a lie and repugicans blocked a veterans bill in Congress.  Explain to me again how exactly that’s “supporting our troops”?
Oh man, I could keep going on and on. I might have to make a “Part 2″ of this here in the near future. 

The shrub Knew He Was Too Stupid to Keep the CIA's Torture Secrets

by Taylor Berman
Buried among more disturbing revelations in the Senate Intelligence Committee's new report on CIA's torture programs is this darkly hilarious tidbit: the shrub asked not to be told the locations of CIA detention facilities because he was worried he'd "accidentally disclose" the secret intel.
The shrub's self-awareness of his own idiocy was revealed in May 2004, during a presentation about the CIA's torture program.

Senate IP address vandalizes Wikipedia to scrub "torture" from CIA torture report

An anonymous editor at -- registered to the US Senate -- has repeatedly attempted to scrub the word "torture" from the Wikipedia entry from Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA torture.
Attempts on Dec 9 and Dec 10 to remove references to "torture" were reverted by other Wikipedians. These edits -- and others -- can be read by following @congressedits, a twitterbot that tweets new Wikipedia edits from IPs registered to the US Congress

The Truth Hurts


Mystery man has petition approved by Supreme Court, can't be found

Bobby Chen wrote his own petition to the Supreme Court over his suit against the City of Baltimore, which demolished his house and trashed all his stuff -- and the Supreme Court granted it.
It's basically unheard of for pro se litigants (people who represent themselves) to be granted a hearing at the Supreme Court, and even more impressive is that Chen's first language apparently isn't English, but he managed to make his case strongly despite the odd grammatical problem.
Now if only the Supreme Court could find him.
It would be a drag if the case did not go forward, because then the world would not get an answer to the question presented: "Whether, under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 4(m), a district court has discretion to extend the time for service of process absent a showing of good cause, as the Second, Third, Fifth, Seventh, Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Circuits have held, or whether the district court lacks such discretion, as the Fourth Circuit has held?" Bobby Chen cares about the answer to that question, or at least he used to, because it will determine whether he can continue with his claim that Baltimore destroyed his property without a hearing. Or, as he put it, "after he came back from a trip he found his house was demolishing and all his personal belonging had disappeared."
...Because the Court takes so few cases, Mr. Chen will have no trouble finding a lawyer to help him with this one for free. So if you see him, please ask him to call the Court at 202-479-3000. The sooner the better, really.

The Koch Wall Street Crusade To Rob Pensions Is Underway

This is the class war billionaire Warren Buffet admitted his class was winning ...
Koch Pension theft
If anyone in America was unsure what unmitigated greed entails, or to what extent the Koch brothers and Wall Street will go to enrich themselves at the expense of others, two events this week should clarify how they have transcended the normal definition of greed. This abnormal greed goes far beyond a dangerous lust to possess wealth; it derives from a philosophical bent that no-one in America except the wealthy elite should have anything. Now that the Kochs and Wall Street have successfully acquired many state legislatures and the United States Congress, the national campaign they launched last year to impoverish the entire population is nearing fruition as they are a step closer to eliminating public and private sector pensions to enrich the wealthy.
First, despite sending his state into an economic tailspin after squandering a budget surplus and cutting services to provide unimaginable tax cuts for the rich, Kansas governor Sam Brownback is robbing employee pensions to cover the state’s devastating budget shortfalls. Brownback defended his decision to cut employee’s pensions to help fill ongoing budget shortfalls since he gave the wealthy unfunded tax cuts; like the tax cuts, Brownback is being heavily criticized by leaders in his own party. He said “It’s kind of, uh, well where are you going to go for the funds? It’s kind of what’s your other option?”
The other option would be rescinding the outrageous tax cuts for the rich, but that is something the Koch brothers will not allow when retirees’ pensions are available to rob. Brownback would take more from education, but the Kansas Supreme Court already forced him to stop stealing from schools to fund the tax cuts for the rich. There is no provision to stop Brownback from stealing from retirees to fund the one-percent’s tax cuts that has been a well-planned scheme courtesy of the Koch brothers, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), Wall Street, and the State Policy Network (SPN).
Last year this column reported that The State Policy Network (SPN), a Koch-funded sister organization of ALEC, boasts itself as a group of “free-market think tanks” that would initially target six different states to eliminate public sector pensions; Kansas was one of those states.  The group’s primary objective was to achieve its stated goals founded on the Kochs’  “commitment to free enterprise including reforming (robbing) public employee pensions.” It is what Brownback is doing in Kansas and now that the Kochs control Congress, repugicans are implementing “pension reform” earlier than expected with a “rider” in the so-called “CRomnibus” appropriations bill.
The CRomnibus is supposed to be about annual appropriations for government agencies, not gutting campaign finance laws or allowing Wall Street to unilaterally cut private employee’s pensions; Wall Street already decimated the private pension accounts in the 2008 financial collapse, but apparently it was not enough to satiate their greed. So the House inserted an esoteric ‘rider’ in the bill meant to fund the government along with one to abolish campaign reform law and deregulate Wall Street for the next financial collapse. The “gut private pensions” initiative will not create one job, will not grow the economy, or reduce the nation’s debt and deficit. It is a giant bailout gift to Wall Street for sending the nation’s economy over the cliff in 2008 and authority to rob retirees’ pension accounts. The rider’s language gives Wall Street unlimited and unilateral power to cut retirement benefits to millions of current retirees whose pension accounts are tied up in the same private plans Wall Street nearly wiped out just six years ago.
Experts say if the initiative is enacted, it would be the most consequential change to retirement policy in the United States since the landmark pension legislation passed 40 years ago. Wall Street and the Koch brothers have had their sights set on abolishing the 1974 Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) with the same intent as seizing control of the Social Security Trust Fund. The goal is empowering the rich to cut retirees’ formerly guaranteed benefits to extinction, and this CRomnibus abomination will enable them to see the Kochs’  “commitment reforming (robbing) public employee pensions” to fruition earlier than they expected.   The 40-year old ERISA was enacted to protect the lifelong pension investments of millions of retirees the Koch-Wall Street criminals insist belongs to them. The repugicans agree with the Kochs and Wall Street that retired people cannot have their retirement savings because it belongs to the rich.
This idea that Americans’ pensions belong to the rich was best elucidated by Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfien in 2012 when he said that people expecting their Social Security “are not going to get it.” He said regardless what people think, their lifelong investments are something that “we can’t afford.” Those retirement accounts, whether invested in Social Security or private retirement plans do not belong to “we” (the rich), they belong to the people who paid into them throughout their working lives. However, according to Blankfein who speaks for the Koch brothers, “things have to change” because “we can’t afford them;” whether it is Social Security or private retirement accounts. Accounts repugicans intend giving Wall Street the power to cut because Wall Street “can’t afford them” either.
What Brownback is doing in Kansas, cutting employee pensions to pay for tax cuts for the rich is tantamount to Congress giving Wall Street power to cut pensions to satisfy their greed. Those pension accounts belong to the people who paid into them; not Wall Street or Kansas millionaires and billionaires like the Koch brothers. The repugicans have dutifully served the Kochs by decimating the middle class and sending more of them into poverty to enrich the wealthy over the past 20 years, and now they are pursuing what was at one time an untapped and federally protected resource; retired Americans’ pensions they saved and paid into over their working lives.
This is the class war billionaire Warren Buffet admitted his class was winning, and if any American doubted that the Kochs or Wall Street would stop at robbing retired people’s incomes to satisfy their absolute greed, they are fools. Obviously, America is flush with fools because besides giving the Koch brothers and Wall Street the United States Congress, they gave them authority to steal their pensions and condemn them to poverty in their old age.

Wingnut Open Carry Texas Agitator Arrested For Shooting And Killing Husband And Stepdaughter

Veronica Dunnachie, a wingnut Open Carry Texas agitator is facing capital murder charges in the slaying of her husband and his adult daughter.…
VeronicaAn Arlington, Texas woman is in jail, facing capital murder charges for the death of her husband and his adult daughter. Veronica Dunnachie, 35, is accused of murdering her husband and his daughter. The couple was having marital difficulties. The bodies were discovered when the police were conducting a welfare check on the home. Dunnachie was taken into custody Wednesday afternoon.
Dunnachie was involved in Open Carry Texas and Open Carry Tarrant County, a Fort Worth based gun nut cabal. Her Facebook page features a number of photos of her at Open Carry covens. It also has pictures of her aiming various guns, and the page includes one profile picture of her donning a red, white, and blue colored repugican elephant necklace.
Dunnachie and her husband were experiencing marital discord. Each of them had put temporary restraining orders out on each other in November. Dunnachie’s cousin described her as an “insane gun nut” who regularly posted about her gun use on social media.
The slayings are being investigated as domestic homicides, and the killings had no direct connection to any “open carry” coven.
When individuals view guns as the primary solution to their problems, be they real or imagined, it makes sense that those disturbed individuals can carry that logic to its deadly extreme. A person obsessed with brandishing firearms as their primary means of security lacks sufficient moral filters and views that weapon as a means to bring about security by ending a contentious divorce.
Texas, should follow the lead of other state’s and at least adopt something like California’s ”gun violence restraining order” (but they won't). Such a law might have prevented the double slayings in Arlington.
Rights carry responsibilities.
One thing is certain - when Veronica Dunnachie is convicted of capital murder charges, her right to bear arms will not be extended to her in prison. The government will indeed take guns away. Not because they are tyrannical, but because other people’s right to life and liberty trumps her right to bear arms.

Texas wingnut christian fundamentalist Arrested in Israel for Planning to Blow Up Islamic Sites

by Zaid Jilani
Further evidence that most terrorism in the United States is conducted by non-muslims.
Although the news media typically focuses on muslim terrorists, the truth is that most terrorism in the United States is conducted by non-muslims. Out of Israel this week comes a case that involves our country actually exporting this terror, as American Adam Livix was arrested for allegedly plotting to blow up muslim holy sites.
Livix is a 30-year-old evangelical from Texas who left the United States last year when he was sought for drug-related charges. He has lived in Israel since March 2013, apparently overstaying his tourist visa (his charges include being an undocumented resident).
Livix first lived in Hebron and Bethlehem, among West Bank Palestinians, claiming to be a Navy SEAL. Interestingly, Livix lived in the section of Hebron where jewish extremists who likely killed Palestinian-American Alex Odeh once fled to. The Israeli security agency Shin Bet claimed he was asked by Palestinian activists to be part of a plot to assassinate President Obama, but that he declined that offer (it isn't clear who approached him about this earlier alleged plot, or if it even existed beyond conjecture).
Livix later moved to Israel, and began planning terror attacks on muslim holy sites in Jerusalem. He was assisted in this endeavor by an Israeli soldier with whom he lived. His roommate slowly obtained explosives and other armaments stolen from the Israeli army and “expressed ... his negative opinion of the Arab population of Israel and his wish to harm sites in Israel holy to islam,” according to Israel's Justice Ministry.
Speaking to CNN's Jake Tapper, correspondent Ben Wedeman said Livix was “ fairly close” to pulling off the plot, having successfully staked out sites for attacks and receiving the explosives from his roommate. 

Random Celebrity Photos


Norma Jeane photographed by Joseph Jasgur
Norma Jeane photographed by Joseph Jasgur
You may know her as Marilyn Monroe

Spinning playground equipment welded to prevent movement in the interest of public safety

Officials in New York City have welded the spinning playground equipment in local parks, claiming that it was so dangerous for children that it posed a threat to public safety. The city’s Parks and Recreation Department has either removed or welded the spinning discs at seven different parks in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens. A department spokeswoman said that this was done “in the interest of public safety,” but would not discuss how many injuries had actually occurred as a result of the equipment.
Parents are not too happy about the decision. Brooklyn parent David Friedlander said that his two-year-old was disappointed to discover that the spinning disk at Vanderbilt Playground had become a stationary disk. “I think it sucks,” he said. “I think it’s a sad commentary on how litigious and afraid we’ve become of having our children get a few boo-boos.”
A spokesman for City Councilman Carlos Menchaca said his office hadn't received any complaints about the rotating saucer at Slope Park, and a spokesman for City Councilman Brad Lander said no one complained about the metal disk at Vanderbilt Playground until after it was welded into a stationary position. It is unclear whether the city has plans to weld more playground equipment in the future.

New safety campaign advises that you don't jerk and drive

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety have just launched its new "Don't Jerk and Drive" campaign.
Drivers are urged to avoid jerking the steering wheel while driving in wintry conditions. Jerking on the steering wheel when your vehicle's tires slip on an icy road, over-correcting, as it's known, can kill you.
"Over-correcting only results in chaos. And besides – nobody likes a jerker," says a well-spoken British lady on the campaign's video.

The department’s director Lee Axdahl, who is well aware of the double meaning, says the message is drivers should keep their car out of the ditch and their minds out of the gutter.

Update: The don't jerk and drive campaign has now been pulled.

Woman charged with drunk driving after crashing into boat

A woman was arrested on Tuesday after she was driving with a blood-alcohol content nearly three times the legal limit and crashed the car she was driving into a boat.
Victoria Ventura, 57, of Rome, Pennsylvania, was driving on Water Street in Toms River, New Jersey, at around 5:50pm when she left the road on the right, police said.
She went over a curb, through a utility pole and crashed into a boat that was being stored adjacent to the road, according to police. Ventura was not injured in the crash.
Her blood-alcohol level was determined to be .21 percent, police said. Water Street was closed overnight in both directions for repairs to the utility pole and wires. Sporadic power outages were also reported in the area.

Car crashed into garage through the roof

A car became airborne and crashed through the roof of a home's garage in Escondido, California, early on Wednesday morning after the driver failed to negotiate a turn on a nearby road, police have said. The BMW slammed through the garage roof at around 12:23am and the driver fled, said Escondido Sgt. Jim Lanigan.
The vehicle was on loan from a local dealership. Two cars parked inside the garage were damaged. Homeowner George Strother said he and his wife thought there had been an earthquake and didn't know a vehicle had smashed into their garage until Escondido police pounded on their door.
Strother said the "brand new visitor" came through the roof and landed on the hood of his Nissan Pathfinder and knocked the ceiling down across it and his Mazda Miata. He said the driver must have got out the passenger window of the BMW, through a hole in the wall and jumped down onto his ski boat parked outside.

The house sits about 20 feet below the road and it appears the driver lost control of the vehicle while trying to turn too quickly, Lanigan said. Police found skid marks on the road above the home. "You can see where he was turning onto the side streeet and was going too fast," Lanigan said. "The speed I don't know, but enough that it couldn't make the turn and launched itself." The driver was gone by the time police got to the house. There were no signs of alcohol and no blood in the vehicle to indicate the driver was injured, Lanigan said.

Random Photos


The Secret World Of Beer

Beer is the world's most widely consumed alcoholic beverage, and is the third-most popular drink overall, after water and tea. Beer is a drink that's been with us for millennia. But how has science shaped today's pints? Discover a world of secret yeasts, strange brews and 'glass widgets.'

Baking bread from an ancient Egyptian hieroglyph recipe

Miguel writes, "I tried to replicate an ancient Egyptian bread, starting with the right kind of wheat, the grinding and the baking... I also made a modernized version inspired by Egypt."
The science behind yeast, which transforms sugars and uses bread gluten to make holes and to make it softer wasn't fully understood until thousands of years later. Nevertheless, its ability to make bread rise was probably known. It is difficult to say if Egyptians used yeast to leaven the breads. But there's a couple of reasons that can lead us to believe they did:
* The cultivation of wild yeast present in the air and in the water is one of the oldest bread making traditions. Flour and water that has been left outside after a while tends to grow some variety of wild yeast. Not only does this improve the texture, but also the flavor. Pieces of that bread can be used later on to make more bread, or like the Sumerians did, to make beer. This actually became a way of cultivating and domesticating the best strains of yeast. Yeast strains present in the Nile are still used today for bread and beer-making.
* The two staples of the Egyptian diet, often produced side by side, were bread and beer. Even if they didn't use beer to make bread (something that is easy to assume they did), the yeast present on the air and on the grain probably was present on the bread that was left out in the air.
* Archeological evidence shows that beer was made by first baking "beer bread,” a type of well-leavened, lightly baked bread that did not kill the yeasts, which was then crumbled over a sieve, washed with water in a vat and then left to ferment. Moreover, a strain of yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae present in the region of the Nile, was found to be used in bread and beer making.

Restoring Ghosts

image3Native fungus could be another tool for helping restore ghostly forests

Cathy Cripps doesn’t seem to worry about the grizzly bears and black bears that watch her work, but she is concerned about the ghosts and skeletons she encounters. The ghosts […]

Historical Photos


Gardner, Untitled (Knife Thrower Signor Arcaris & his sister Miss Rose Arcaris), c.1900
Knife Thrower Signor Arcaris and his sister Miss Rose Arcaris, c.1900

Founding Fathers-Era Time Capsule

A 219-year-old time capsule is carefully extracted from a corner stone of the Boston Statehouse.

11 Things Lost, Then Rediscovered, At Museums

Museums often have millions of items in their collections, so it's not surprising that things occasionally get misidentified or even lost - but it must be a nice surprise to rediscover them. Here are just a few examples of specimens and artifacts that were lost, then found, in museums.

The Caterpillar Defense

Let's say you're a baby bird. In particular, you're a chick belonging to the species Laniocera hypopyrra, a.k.a. cinereous mourner. You hatch out of your egg and find yourself in a nest up in tree in a rain forest in Peru. You can't fly. You can only wait for your parents to bring you food. You are, in other words, easy pickings.
So what might you do to avoid getting snatched up by a predator? Perhaps you might hold very still so as not to attract attention. If you're a cinereous mourner, however, this is not what you do. You grow brilliant orange plumage. You make yourself absurdly easy to see.

Dinosaur News

MIT-Dinosaur-Volcano-01_1What really killed the dinosaurs?

Before an asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs, Earth experienced a short burst of intense volcanism. Sixty-six million years ago, an asteroid more than five miles wide smashed into the Earth […]

How Butterflies Came To Look Like Dead Leaves

The secret of how butterflies came to look like leaves may have been revealed - fittingly, by an insect that gave wings to Charles Darwin's theory of evolution. The question of how the closed wings of dead leaf (or oakleaf) butterflies from the Kallima genus came to perfectly resemble brown leaves - from their veins down to tiny fungus spots - has been hotly debated.
Now Japanese scientists from the National Institute of Agrobiological Sciences in Ibaraki claim to have discovered that Kallima butterflies went through at least four distinct intermediate forms before evolving into species that disguise themselves as leaves.

Animal Pictures