Paul Krugman: Deadly Snits (NY Times Blog)
So what motivated this rage? Regulations banning phosphate in dishwasher detergent, which [Erick] Erickson believed was causing his dishes to get inadequately cleaned.There has to be some significance in the awesome triviality of the things that induce rage. But I don't understand it.
Andrew Tobias: I'm Proud To Be A Republican (Sarcasm)
I'm proud to be a Republican because we're making it harder for people to vote. Watch Barack Obama and Al Sharpton lament the new laws we've passed, here. (Like requiring Alabamans to go to the DMV to get new photo ID and then shutting down the DMV offices in black neighborhoods. Good stuff!)
Andrew Tobias: "In (Weak) Defense Of Sarcasm (Mine)"
… you won't see columns like yesterday's here often. Yet it was factually true (no?) and presumably - though they wouldn't frame it the way I did - a lot of Republicans are proud of, or at least pleased with, the party's position on climate change, voting rights, and the rest. Or else why would they still identify as Republicans?
Alex Henderson: 10 past Republicans who'd never make it in today's crazy GOP (Salon)
The party of Lincoln has become the party of Ted Cruz.
Mark Morford: "'Force Awakens' mini-review from a reluctant non-fan who would rather see 'Spotlight'" (SF Gate)
Force Awakens verdict, not that it matters and surely not that any real fan cares in the slightest: A lively enough distraction, has already made more money than God, but you can't help wish they had taken a few real risks, interesting risks, besides the usual daddy issues and besides shoving in a weak mangling of Romeo & Juliet, AKA "the black Stormtrooper who apparently loves the Jedi white girl. Totally asexually, of course."
Mark Morford: "The six essential records (and 30 top tracks) of 2015" (SF Gate)
Every year at this time, my friend Andy sends out an excitable email asking his most music-crazed friends - sound engineers, clubsters, DJs, me, anyone for whom music is less a casual dalliance and more like lifeblood - to send around their personal lists of the year's best music, so we can all discover something new and/or gently mock each others' weird tastes in African banjo disco, kazoo jazz funk or lumberjack doom metal.
KATIE ROGERS: "'Grateful Doe' Is Identified 20 Years After Road Trip Death" (NY Times)
A man who died in a crash on a Virginia road in 1995 left few clues to his identity behind: a star tattoo on his arm, two Grateful Dead ticket stubs and a note addressed to someone named Jason.
J.F. Sargent: 4 Good Ideas That Got Ruined By Idiots (Cracked)
GYM WILDLIFE (YouTube)
The Gym. Millions of homo sapiens frequent this urban wilderness. Today we will take a look into this strange place and show you the gym like you've never seen it before.
David Bruce's Amazon Author Page
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David Bruce has over 80 Kindle books on Amazon.com.
"Doug's Most Shared Facebook Post" Today
Michelle in AZ
I had just frigidly admired the picture on yesterday's page of the iced in Danish cottage when I read down the page and found the lovely picture of the Indonesian volcano spewing fire, lava, and ash. Such pretty contrasts! You have the BEST content! You delight my eyes, keep me informed, and educate me. Thank you for all you do! I appreciate you every day.
We are all only temporarily able bodied.
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
THE "MISFORTUNE" OF "MALHEUR"
THE 'TITTIE' LAW!
'WATCH 'AL GORE' MELT BEFORE YOUR EYES!
"WE DON'T WANT THE WHITE MAN POISON"!
"BONY 'MORONI' "!
HERE COME THE NAZIS'!
"SAY WHAT 'HONKY'?"
TWO GEEKS! PART 2
FUCK THESE BASTARDS!
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
More rain and lots of thunder.
"Join or Die"
Craig Ferguson wants you to Join or Die by Thursday, February 18 at 11/10c.
That's the day the comedian's new History series will debut, the cable network announced Wednesday.
Join or Die With Craig Ferguson will find the former Late Late Show host debating with a panel of guests, many of whom also were announced Wednesday.
Ferguson's panelists will include Judd Apatow (Freaks and Geeks), Julie Bowen (Modern Family), Courteney Cox (Cougar Town), Jimmy Kimmel (Jimmy Kimmel Live), Lisa Kudrow (The Comeback), Joel McHale (The Soup) and more.
Topics of discussion will run along the lines of "the most doomed presidential campaign" and "history's biggest d-bag."
2 New Dog Breeds
American Kennel Club
A hairless terrier and an ancient North African hound are ready to run with the pack of dog breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club.
The organization announced Tuesday that the American hairless terrier and the sloughi have joined 187 other recognized breeds. The newcomers can now compete in most AKC shows and competitions, though not at the prominent Westminster Kennel Club show until next year.
Many American hairless terriers are, as advertised, bare-skinned, though others have short coats but carry the hairless gene. Their rise began when a hairless puppy emerged in a litter of rat terriers in the 1970s, wowing a Louisiana couple and leading to deliberate breeding of the hairless dogs, according to the American Hairless Terrier Club of America.
The sloughi (pronounced SLOO-ghee), also called the Arabian greyhound, was developed to hunt game as big as gazelles. The lean, leggy dogs have some similarities to salukis, another hound breed from North Africa.
American Kennel Club
Last Alligator Wrestler Bows Out
On billboards across the Florida Everglades, a burly Native American man pries open an alligator's mouth, pressing his face dangerously close to the reptile's 80 glinting teeth. "Adventures Await," the ads promise, as motorists whiz by.
The man's name is Rocky Jim, Jr., a 44-year-old Miccosukee Indian who has been wrestling alligators for 31 years, entertaining countless tourists from a sand pit and pond beneath a chickee hut along the Tamiami Trail, a two-lane road linking Miami to the port city of Tampa.
But on the final Sunday of 2015, the last remaining Miccosukee Indian in the century-old tradition of wrestling alligators decided it was time to step down, leaving no successors in sight among the tribe of around 600 people.
Alligator wrestling is considered a Native American tradition, first popularized in the early 1900s by a white man, Henry Coppinger, Jr, the US-born son of Irish immigrants, according to historian Patsy West.
And while Jim's absence leaves a void, he has already begun teaching his 13-year-old son to catch baby alligators -- not necessarily to make it his trade, but to keep a tribal tradition alive.
Return To Florida in Record Numbers
Green Sea Turtles
There are seven species of sea turtles, and they are all at risk of extinction-pressured by poaching, pollution, loss of habitat, and climate change.
But the odds for a Florida sub-population of one sea turtle species have improved enough that wildlife officials are poised to downgrade its conservation status-slightly-on the federal list of endangered species.
Green sea turtles nested in record numbers in 2015 at Florida's Archie Carr National Wildlife Refuge, the most important green sea turtle nesting habitat in North America.
Researchers counted 14,152 nests by the time the egg-laying season ended last fall. That surpassed the previous record of 12,846 clutches, set in 2013, and smashed past previous yearly totals, which ranged from just under 200 nests in 2001 to 6,023 in 2011.
Since green sea turtles lay around 75 to 200 eggs per nest, the season may have produced as many as three million baby turtles.
Green Sea Turtles
Chief Justice Spews
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore on Wednesday said state probate judges remain under a court order to refuse marriage licenses to gay couples even though a US. Supreme Court decision effectively legalized same-sex marriage more than six months ago.
The outspoken chief justice, who previously tried to block gay marriage from coming to the Deep South state, issued an administrative order saying the Alabama Supreme Court never lifted a March directive to probate judges to refuse licenses to gay couples.
"Until further decision by the Alabama Supreme Court, the existing orders of the Alabama Supreme Court that Alabama probate judges have a ministerial duty not to issue any marriage license contrary to the Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment or the Alabama Marriage Protection Act remain in full force and effect," Moore wrote.
The state court had asked for briefs on how to proceed after that ruling, but has not issued any follow-up orders. Moore said he was issuing his administrative order because there was "confusion" among probate judges on how to proceed.
Most judges in Alabama's 67 counties are issuing marriage licenses to gay couples. Judges in nine counties have shut down license operations altogether to avoid doing so.
Widely Used Pesticide Can Harm
An insecticide widely used on cotton plants and citrus groves can harm bees that come into contact with those crops under certain conditions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Wednesday.
The agency said a preliminary risk assessment of imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid insecticide chemically similar to nicotine, found that chemical residues of more than 25 parts per billion would likely harm bees and their hives and result in the bees producing less honey.
The EPA, which collaborated with California's Department of Pesticide Regulation, said data showed imidacloprid residues in pollen and nectar above that threshold level in citrus and cotton crops.
But residues found on corn and leafy vegetables were below at-risk levels, the agency said. Some crops needed more testing.
Debate over neonicotinoids, also known as neonics, has intensified as concern grows over the health of pollinators crucial to the production of many foods.
Goes Birther On Cruz
Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump (R-Pendejo) has waded back into the topic of eligibility for the U.S. presidency, telling the Washington Post that rival Ted Cruz could run into trouble if he won the party's nomination because he was born in Canada.
Trump, the real-estate billionaire, had previously demanded that President Barack Obama prove he was born in the United States. He appeared to re-enter that "birther" arena with his latest comments, which were published on Tuesday.
"Republicans are going to have to ask themselves the question: 'Do we want a candidate who could be tied up in court for two years?' That'd be a big problem," Trump was quoted as saying in an interview with the Post. "You don't want to be running and have that kind of thing over your head."
Presidents must be "natural-born citizens" under the U.S. Constitution. Cruz was born in Calgary, Alberta, but his mother was a U.S. citizen, which he says meets the requirements to run.
Cruz dismissed the comments on Tuesday with a lighthearted tweet implying Trump's remarks were far-fetched. He linked to a video of the "jumping the shark" scene from a 1977 episode of the television show "Happy Days" in which the character Fonzie jumps over a shark while on water skis. The phrase has come to indicate when a fading TV show does something outrageous or silly to grab attention.
Making History for Netflix
Since premiering last month on Netflix, "The Ridiculous Six" hasn't exactly been riding stellar buzz. In his review, Variety's Justin Chang wrote the Adam Sandler
But according to Netflix, the slapstick Western is hardly a joke.
During their CES keynote on Wednesday, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and chief content officer Ted Sarandos offered some insight into the company's movie business as well as the eye-popping performance of Sandler's new film.
Since debuting exclusively on Netflix, "The Ridiculous Six" has been seen more times in 30 days than any other movie in Netflix history.
Some outlets erroneously reported on Wednesday that "Ridiculous Six" was the most-watched Netflix title in history. A source later clarified: it's the most streams ever in 30 days of release.
Florida Atlantic University
Florida Atlantic University has dismissed a professor who said massacres at a Connecticut elementary school and a county office building in San Bernardino, California, were staged, the university said.
Media professor James Tracy's last day at the university in Boca Raton will be Friday, the school said in a statement after alerting him of the decision in a letter on Tuesday.
Tracy, 50, has worked at the university since 2002. He could not be reached on Wednesday and his attorney, Thomas Johnson, declined to comment.
Tracy's website, MemoryHoleBlog.com, gained notice in 2013 after he claimed the December 2012 massacre by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, was staged by "crisis actors" hired by the Obama administration. The attack killed 26 people, including 20 children.
Last month, the university said it would seek to fire Tracy after he sent a letter to the parents of 6-year-old Sandy Hook victim Noah Pozner demanding proof they were his parents. On his blog, Tracy called them "alleged parents" and accused Lenny and Veronique Pozner of fabricating their son's death certificate to cash in on the tragedy.
Florida Atlantic University
LEAVES PERMANENT 'F*** YOU'
Quentin Tarantino -- known to drop a 4-letter word or two -- appropriately, left one in cement when he got a huge Hollywood honor at the Chinese Theatre.
QT was immortalized Tuesday when he put his hand and footprints in sidewalk outside the legendary theatre. But the shoes he was wearing had "F*** U" in the soles, and yeah ... now that's in the cement too.
Of course, Tarantino's shoes are replicas of the same pair Uma Thurman wore in 'Kill Bill.'
It's unclear if the theatre will let the curses slide or censor the sidewalk. Gotta say ... it would be fitting to leave it as is, but we'll see.
Prime-time viewership numbers compiled by Nielsen for Dec. 28-Jan. 3. Listings include the week's ranking and viewership.
1. NFL Football: Minnesota vs. Green Bay, NBC, 24.29 million.
2. College Football Semifinal: Michigan State vs. Alabama, ESPN, 18.55 million.
3. College Football Studio (8:08 p.m. EST Thursday), ESPN, 18.09 million.
4. "Sunday Night NFL Pre-Kick," NBC, 17.75 million.
5. College Football Studio (8:01 p.m. EST Thursday), ESPN, 16.76 million.
6. NFL Football: Cincinnati vs. Denver, ESPN, 15.81 million.
7. College Football Semifinal: Oklahoma vs. Clemson, ESPN, 15.64 million.
8. "60 Minutes," CBS, 15.36 million.
9. Rose Bowl: Stanford vs. Iowa, ESPN, 13.55 million.
10. College Football Studio (4:56 p.m. EST Friday), ESPN, 13.22 million.
11. "Prime-time New Year's Rockin' Eve" (Part 2), ABC, 13.02 million.
12. "Football Night in America," NBC, 12.81 million.
13. College Football Studio (4:41 p.m. EST Friday), ESPN, 12.66 million.
14. College Football Semifinal: Michigan State vs. Alabama postgame show, ESPN, 11.61 million.
15. "NCIS," CBS, 10.37 million.
16. College Football Studio (3:59 p.m. EST Thursday), ESPN, 9.78 million.
17. Fiesta Bowl: Notre Dame vs. Ohio State, ESPN, 9.76 million.
18. Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma State vs. Ole Miss, ESPN, 8.94 million.
19. College Football Studio (3:54 p.m. EST Thursday), ESPN, 8.17 million.
20. "Prime-time New Year's Rockin' Eve," ABC, 8.13 million.
Pierre Boulez had a reputation as a hardcore modernist steeped in the dissonances of 20th-Century music. But that didn't stop him from turning in brilliant performances of decidedly Romantic composers such as Mahler and Wagner as he forged a career as one of the leading figures in contemporary classical music.
Boulez traveled a long path from avante-garde composer to recording star who won 26 Grammy awards. He started out as a rebel who once said any composer who did not realize the necessity of dissonant twelve-tone composition was "useless." To the end, he continued to reject what he considered easy ways of pleasing audiences or music he found uninteresting.
The French conductor and composer died peacefully Tuesday at his home in Baden-Baden, Germany, said his assistant Marion Thiem. He was 90 and had been unable to conduct recently due to eye trouble, she said.
Boulez ranged well beyond the strict confines of modernism. For some of his last recordings he chose the lush, moody works of early 20th-century Polish composer Karol Szymanovski. And he did a 1984 album with another musician of uncompromising tastes, Frank Zappa, including Zappa compositions such as "The Girl in the Magnesium Dress."
While his own compositions remained resolutely difficult - and a tough sell for most audiences - his skills in imposing clarity on large-scale works by audience favorites helped make him a concert-hall star.
Even performing something as turbulent as Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring" or one of Gustav Mahler's sprawling symphonies, Boulez remained a cool and contained presence on the podium, preferring a dark business suit and tie to tuxedo and tails, his gestures communicating logic and precision. He didn't use a baton.
He turned more and more from composition to conducting during his career, leading the New York Philharmonic, where he succeeded Leonard Bernstein, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra during the 1970s.
He conducted Wagner's "Ring" cycle of operas at the Bayreuth Festival Theater and also worked with the Chicago Symphony, the Cleveland Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris and the London Symphony Orchestra.
Born in Montbrison, France, on March 26, 1925, Boulez initially studied before turning to music. He studied harmony at the Paris Conservatory with composer Olivier Messiaen and had lessons from Rene Leibowitz in the dissonant 20th-century style known as twelve-tone composition. His compositions include the Second Piano Sonata from 1947-48 and "Le marteau sans maitre (The Hammer without a Master), a setting of surrealist poetry by Rene Char for six instruments and voice.
In 1977, he launched IRCAM, a Paris-based institute focused on music, acoustics and electronics.
Nicholas Caldwell, co-founder and singer with the California R&B group The Whispers, has died. He was 71.
Willette Ballard, a representative for the group, said Caldwell died Tuesday of congestive heart failure at his San Francisco home.
Formed in the San Francisco Bay area in 1963, Caldwell was an original member of the group that included brothers Walter and Wallace Scott, Marcus Hutson and Gordy Harmon. Their first top 10 R&B hit was in 1970 with "Seems Like I Gotta Do Wrong." Their first album to go platinum was "The Whispers" in 1980. It included the disco hit, "And The Beat Goes On."
Caldwell also penned some of their songs, including the fan favorite "Lady."
The group also had an R&B and pop hit "Rock Steady" with Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds.