Andrew Tobias: Helping The Blind To See; Triply Offensive
Policy is not, at this stage, what people are concerned about with Trump - he is, as so many Republicans have said or signaled, simply unfit to be President. But I can't resist pointing out Trump's triply offensive promise Monday to eliminate the estate tax: "No family will have to pay the death tax. American workers have paid taxes their whole lives. It's just plain wrong and most people agree with that. We will repeal it."
First off, it's grossly misleading - basically a lie.
Suzanne Moore: Women face abuse at work every day. Don't look to the left for help (The Guardian)
If Labour can't promote women in its own ranks, how can it protect their rights in the workplace?
Homa Khaleeli: Why young people have stopped drinking tea (The Guardian)
Teabag sales are plummeting, with half of 16- to 34-year-olds worried that the humble cuppa might stain their teeth.
Rebecca Schuman: The Greatest Gymnast of All Time (Slate)
When Simone Biles grows up, she wants to be like Kohei Uchimura.
David Edelstein: Hate Critics All You Want, But the Studio's to Blame for Suicide Squad's Failings (Slate)
It's a familiar pattern in this blighted era for movies, in which Comic-Con stands at the epicenter of Hollywood's consciousness and woe to critics who aren't fellow travelers-i.e. Comic-Communists.
Gene Del Vecchio: Suicide Squad Survives. Critics Don't! (Huffington Post)
Wow! What a miss. Movie critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave Suicide Squad a mere 26 percent rating, while audiences rated it a 74 percent on the same site. Most importantly, the film exploded at the box office with $135 million on its opening domestic weekend. You would think it is humiliating to harangue a film then to see it soar at the box office. It seems that many film critics just don't understand or appreciate films with mass appeal.
Cezary Jan Strusiewicz: My School Staged A Fake School Shooting And Someone Died (Cracked)
5. There Was Basically No Warning That It Was A Drill
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Michelle in AZ
Some most amusing accounts of lies Trump has told and his bizarre responses when confronted about the lies:
The best lies from Donald Trump's 2007 deposition.
As for names for Trump who loves to call others belittling names, a friend just referred to him as the Cheeto asshole. Pretty good.
We are all only temporarily able bodied.
This is why I retired/got too old for this sh*t.
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
BACK TO BASICS.
THE LOW DOWN DIRTY COWARD!
GET YOUR MOJO WORKING!
NEOLIBERALISM AND DONALD TRUMP!
"FREE TRADE" IS NOT FREE!
"YEARS OF LIVING DANGEROUSLY"
THOMAS AND TENNILLE!
THE "BUTTERFLY WHISPERER".
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
Heat and humidity are both on the rise. Ack.
Zapp Brannigan Speaks
Recently, the Internet noticed more than a passing resemblance between the outrageous boasts of Donald Trump and those of Futurama's ace captain and romantic, Zapp Brannigan.
Voice actor Billy West, voice of Brannigan, has decided not to turn neutral on the matter. So he's taken to Twitter to post recordings of himself reading out Trump's most famous quotes, fully in character of Zapp. West was behind a sizable chunk of Futuramacharacters, providing the voices of Fry, Professor Farnsworth, Dr. Zoidberg and of course, the Big Z himself.
Have your ever wondered if Zapp has tiny hands? Or about his thoughts on global warming? Once Zapp Brannigan is involved in politics, every mission is a political suicide mission.
West has promised that there will more quotes very soon, and he's tweeting at Maurice LaMarche, voice of neglected assistant Kif, to help him by playing Mike Pence. But as to what those quotes will be, he's keeping them under wraps so far.
Which is smart, because as Brannigan once said, "In the game of chess, you can never let your adversary see your pieces."
Blasts Lumpy's 'Verbal Violence'
In a Facebook post directed at the Republican presidential candidate, President Ronald Reagan's daughter blasted Donald's Trump's "glib and horrifying comment" on the Second Amendment.
"I am the daughter of a man who was shot by someone who got his inspiration from a movie," the post by Patti Davis begins, referring to the 1981 assassination attempt on Reagan by John Hinckley Jr.
In the Facebook post, Davis, the eldest child of Ronald and Nancy Reagan, echoed this line of criticism, invoking her family's experience with the 1981 shooting, which wounded the president and three others in Washington, D.C.
"Your glib and horrifying comment about 'Second Amendment people' was heard around the world," the post reads. "It was heard by sane and decent people who shudder at your fondness for verbal violence. It was heard by your supporters, many of whom gleefully and angrily yell, "Lock her up!" at your rallies. It was heard by the person sitting alone in a room, locked in his own dark fantasies, who sees unbridled violence as a way to make his mark in the world, and is just looking for ideas."
Stuff Goes On the Block
Looking to purchase one of Frank Zappa's business cards? A psychedelic concert poster from an early Mothers of Invention gig? Bruce Bickford-designed clay Zappa figures used in the film "Baby Snakes"? Vintage mixing boards, recording gear and guitars that Zappa harnessed to create one of his dozens of studio albums?
Julien's Auctions has announced an extensive sale of items from the estate of the late Frank and Gail Zappa, and that property and more will likely make its way to the auction block.
Featuring memorabilia and gear that until recently was stored in the family's longtime home and recording studio in Los Angeles' Laurel Canyon, the auction will begin on Nov. 4. It will include hundreds of items notable to music and art collectors, gear-heads and those interested in the old, weird Los Angeles.
The sale, however, has once again revealed fissures among Frank Zappa's children. The items are being listed by the Zappa Family Trust, which is controlled by two of Frank and Gail's four children, Ahmet and Diva Zappa, and comes less than a year after Gail's death.
The two other children, Moon and Dweezil, oppose the sale. But as minority stakeholders in the trust, they are helpless to stop it.
Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post news site that has become a global phenomenon, announced Thursday she was stepping down to launch a nonprofit group focused on health and wellness.
Greek-born Huffington, who launched her original American website in 2005 and sold it to internet giant AOL in 2011, said the new venture called Thrive Global aims "to change the way we work and live by ending the collective delusion that burnout is a necessary price for success."
She said she would be stepping down as editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post, which now operates in 10 languages and has a user base of over 200 million.
She said she decided to leave the online news organization because "I simply couldn't do justice to both companies."
Thrive has received funding from Lerer Hippeau Ventures -- led by a HuffPost co-founder Kenneth Lerer -- and other groups and individuals including NBA star Andre Iguodala and entrepreneur and philanthropist Sean Parker. It is to launch after the US election in November.
Escapes Settlement Payments
Mel "Sugar Tits" Gibson
A California appeals court has affirmed a judgment that allows Mel Gibson to withhold settlement payments to ex-wife Oksana Grigorieva over a breach of confidentiality.
The case began in 2010 when Gibson looked to establish that he was really the father of the couple's daughter. Grigorieva filed a separate lawsuit alleging that the actor had committed battery and defamation. Two years later, the couple settled with each other. She got $20,000 per month for child support and a home. He got to be declared the father of the girl. Additionally, to resolve the battery and defamation claims, Gibson was obligated to pay Grigorieva $750,000 in three installments.
After Grigorieva got the first $250,000 payment, she went on Howard Stern's show. On May 21, 2013, she thanked the radio host for his support.
After a further exchange, Grigorieva told Stern, "You know what? You have to embrace your experience and even - it doesn't matter how painful it might be at the time, and that darker experience, learn from it." Grigorieva also said that she planned to work with a domestic violence charity.
As a result of this interview, Gibson filed a request for an order to discharge his obligations to pay future installments under the parties' settlement agreements. Grigorieva's attorneys argued that statements referred only to "unspecified domestic abuse" and that Gibson couldn't establish a breach based on inference. The California appeals court rejects this.
Mel "Sugar Tits" Gibson
Ancient Ice Reveals Clues About Past Climate
Inside a huge walk-in freezer in suburban Denver, a college student in a thick parka shoots a jolt of electricity through a yard-long column of ice extracted from Antarctica.
Just outside the freezer, in a much warmer room, a computer wired to the ice registers a sudden spike in a jagged red line crawling across the screen.
"Hey, we got a volcano," says T.J. Fudge, a University of Washington researcher. The electric current has detected a thin layer of volcanic residue in the ice, deposited by an eruption about 8,000 years ago.
This is the National Ice Core Laboratory in Lakewood, where ice pulled from the depths of Antarctica and Greenland is sliced up, photographed and tested. Most of it is shipped to other labs, where researchers do more experiments looking for clues about Earth's past and future.
Smooth and milky white, the 4- to 5-inch-diameter pieces - called ice cores - provide scientists with a wealth of historical information, from air temperature to greenhouse gases to evidence of cosmic events. The record reaches as far back as 800,000 years.
Opposition Heats Up
American Indians blocked crews constructing the $3.8 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota on Wednesday, while Iowa landowners are asking a judge to halt work in their state until their constitutional challenges are heard.
Law enforcement was called to keep the peace between protesters and armed security guards hired by the Texas-based developer of the four-state pipeline as crews worked on the part of the pipeline that's just north of the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in southern North Dakota. There, at the confluence of the Cannonball and Missouri rivers, American Indians have for months been staging a nonviolent protest at a "spirit camp."
"Everybody is nonviolent and peaceful," said LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, a tribal historian at Standing Rock. "We want to hold them back until we can get to court."
A dozen Iowa landowners are hoping for the same thing, asking a state court in documents filed Tuesday in Des Moines to immediately hear their motion and keep the company from digging a trench across their land. Attorney Bill Hanigan says the Iowa Utilities Board misinterpreted a 2006 state law that bans agricultural land from being taken for private projects via eminent domain.
The 1,172-mile pipeline planned by Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners starts in North Dakota and passes through South Dakota and Iowa before ending in western Illinois.
Dark Greek Legend
Archaeologists have made a sinister discovery at the top of a Greek mountain which might corroborate one of the darkest legends of antiquity.
Excavations this summer on Mount Lykaion, once worshipped as the birthplace of the god Zeus, uncovered the 3,000-year-old skeleton of a teenager amid a mound of ashes built up over a millennium from sacrificed animals.
Greece's Culture Ministry said Wednesday that the skeleton, probably of an adolescent boy, was found in the heart of the 30-meter (100-foot) broad ash altar, next to a man-made stone platform.
Excavators say it's too early to speculate on the nature of the teenager's death but the discovery is remarkable because the remote Mount Lykaion was for centuries associated with the most nefarious of Greek cults: Ancient writers - including Plato - linked it with human sacrifice to Zeus, a practice which has very rarely been confirmed by archaeologists anywhere in the Greek world and never on mainland Greece.
According to legend, a boy was sacrificed with the animals and all the meat was cooked and eaten together. Whoever ate the human part would become a wolf for nine years.
Island Fox Returns From Brink Of Extinction
Three groups of California's rare island fox were removed from the U.S. endangered species list on Thursday, and a fourth was downgraded to threatened, marking the fastest recovery yet for an American mammal once deemed to be on the brink of extinction.
The population of the four subspecies in question on California's Channel Islands, which had plunged to fewer than 200 animals during the late 1990s, has bounced back to nearly 6,000 as of 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported.
The agency said the island fox rebound was hastened by an intense recovery program that included captive breeding of the animals, removal of feral pigs from the islands and reducing an influx of golden eagles from the mainland that had become an invasive predator.
As of last year, the population for three of the groups had been restored to, or exceeded, historic levels, the Fish and Wildlife Service said. The fourth is still recovering.
The island fox, one of America's rarest mammals, are diminutive cousins to the mainland gray fox. Roughly the size of a house cat, they weigh 3 to 5 pounds (1.4 to 2.3 kg) and stand about a foot (30.5 cm) tall. They exist nowhere on Earth but on the six main Channel Islands off the coast of Southern California. The subspecies on two of those islands were never listed.