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"Doug's Most Shared Facebook Post" Today
Michelle in AZ
I drew this up two days ago and it's been shared by 80 or so people, most of whom I don't know. Hope it makes you smile.
Jeannie the Teed-Off Temp
from Marc Perkel
from that Mad Cat, JD
THE INCREDIBLE NEWS OF DONALD J. TRUMP!
THE SINNER AND THE SINNERS!
CHINESE TAKE OUT.
GET READY TO RUMBLE!
Visit JD's site - Kitty Litter Music
In The Chaos Household
After incorrect or unprovable statements made by Republican President Donald Trump (R-Con Man) and some White House aides, one truth is undeniable: Sales of George Orwell's "1984" are soaring.
First published in 1949, Orwell's classic dystopian tale of a society in which facts are distorted and suppressed in a cloud of "newspeak" topped the best-seller list of Amazon.com as of Tuesday evening. The sales bump comes after the Trump administration's assertions his inauguration had record attendance and his unfounded allegation that millions of illegal votes were cast against him last fall.
Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway coined an instant catchphrase Sunday when she called his claims about crowd size "alternative facts," bringing comparisons on social media to "1984."
Orwell's book isn't the only cautionary tale on the Amazon list. Sinclair Lewis' 1935 novel about the election of an authoritarian president, "It Can't Happen Here," was at No. 46. Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" was at No. 71.
Sales also were up for Hannah Arendt's seminal nonfiction analysis "The Origins of Totalitarianism."
Keep Net Neutrality
U.S. Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., Tuesday put the administration on notice, saying he will "fight every step of the way" to preserve net neutrality, which requires internet service providers to enable access to all content and applications, regardless of source.
The statement came after President Donald Trump (R-Grifter) picked Ajit Pai to head the Federal Communications Commission. Pai has opposed net neutrality rules as well as requirements that service providers protect cunsumer privacy.
Pai's "approach would be a disaster for millions of Americans, and if Pai and the Trump administration come after net neutrality, I will fight them every step of the way," Franken said in a Facebook post.
"Net neutrality is the free speech issue of our time, and the internet should remain the free and open platform that it's always been. It is critical to our democracy and our economy that it continue to operate this way."
The rules currently in effect prevent broadband providers from blocking access to legal content, applications, services or nonharmful devices; prevent them from speeding up or slowing down traffic for particular websites, and prevent them from collecting payments to give content providers an advantage over competitors.
Ordered To Remove Climate Science
Following the removal of all mentions of climate change from the White House website, the new administration has apparently trained its sites on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
The EPA and a handful of other government agencies are now reportedly under gag orders: employees are forbidden to discuss ongoing changes, post new material on agency websites, communicate on social media, or respond to queries from media or the public.
This morning, further reports emerged that the agency has been told to remove all mentions of climate change from its website.
In particular, the EPA site contains a page that includes links to scientific global-warming research, supported by detailed measurements of emissions from individual industrial sites, along with the Climate Change Indicators report-collectively assembled by multiple agencies-that analyzes and describes trends, causes, and effects of climate changes.
Over the past two weeks, according to unconfirmed reports, multiple scientists and volunteers have been working to download and archive that data in case it was removed from the agency's site.
Displays Apollo Capsule Hatch
A relic from America's first space tragedy is finally going on display this week, 50 years after a fire on the launch pad killed three astronauts at the start of the Apollo moon program.
The scorched Apollo 1 capsule remains locked away in storage. But NASA is offering visitors at Kennedy Space Center a look at the most symbolic part: the hatch that trapped Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee in their burning spacecraft on Jan. 27, 1967.
A flash fire erupted inside the capsule during a countdown rehearsal, with the astronauts atop the rocket at Cape Canaveral's Launch Complex 34. A cry came from inside: "Got a fire in the cockpit!" White struggled to open the hatch before quickly being overcome by smoke and fumes, along with his two crewmates. It was over for them in seconds.
With its moon program in jeopardy, NASA completely overhauled the Apollo spacecraft. The redesigned capsule - with a quick-release hatch - carried 24 men to the moon; 12 of them landed and walked on its surface.
For the astronauts' families, Apollo 1 is finally getting its due. The tragedy has long been overshadowed by the 1986 Challenger and 2003 Columbia accidents. Remnants of the lost shuttles have been on display at the visitor complex for 1 ½ years.
Lawmakers Trying To Sink Anti-Corruption Measure
South Dakota narrowly approved a ballot measure on Election Day called the South Dakota Government Accountability and Anti-Corruption Act. The state Legislature, the very body the act is designed to hold accountable, began using emergency powers Monday to overturn the measure, which Republican lawmakers have called "unconstitutional."
A House panel voted to send a bill nullifying the ballot measure to the floor. The ethics package was passed by 51 percent of voters and would implement a public campaign financing system, a state ethics commission and stringent new rules on lobbying and disclosures. The ethics package has come under fire from Republicans, who control the Legislature by a 88-16 margin, despite the fact South Dakota was ranked 47th in the nation for accountability by the nonpartisan Center for Public Integrity.
"Across the board, the state lacks robust laws to prevent corruption, apparently the result of a sense, at least among South Dakota's ruling class, that burdensome controls are not needed in a rural state with a supposedly high degree of familiarity, trust and cordiality," the Center report said.
After the election, Senate Majority Leader Blake Curd issued a statement saying the ballot measure "created a constitutional crisis" by turning "every elected official in our state" into "de-facto criminals."
A judge issued a preliminary injunction last month to stay implementation of the measure after Republican lawmakers filed suit to block it.
The Russian parliament on Wednesday passed the second reading of a controversial bill to decriminalize some forms of domestic violence.
The State Duma voted 385-2-1 to eliminate criminal liability for battery on family members that doesn't cause bodily harm. The bill that makes battery on a family member punishable by a fine or a 15-day day arrest has yet to be approved in the third reading. From the Duma, it would proceed to the upper house, largely a rubber-stamp body, and then to President Vladimir Putin's desk.
The bill stems from a Supreme Court ruling to decriminalize battery that doesn't inflict bodily harm, but to retain criminal charges for those accused of battery against family members. Conservative activists objected, arguing it was a threat to parents who might spank their children.
Activists picketed the Duma on Wednesday morning to oppose the bill, which has caused controversy and attracted more than 200,000 signatures online against it.
A survey this month by state-run pollster VTsIOM showed that 19 percent of Russians said "it can be acceptable" to hit one's wife, husband or child "in certain circumstances." The nationwide poll by phone of 1,800 people was held Jan. 13-15. The survey had a margin of error of 2.5 percentage points.
Wildlife Officials Kill Cougars
In a scenario that could come from a B movie, normally timid mountain lions are forced by heavy snows into a remote community, where they feast on pets and chickens. It's happening in Oregon.
Cougars prowling through La Pine have killed two pets and at least 12 chickens, stoking fear in the town in the piney woods of Oregon east of the Cascade Range.
On Saturday, Deschutes County deputies shot and killed a cougar that was hiding under a porch after attacking a dog. On Monday, state and federal wildlife officials went to investigate, and killed three more of the cougars whose paw prints showed they had come right up to houses, on decks and in backyards.
Randy Lewis, a wildlife biologist with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, was one of the two men who tracked the cougars using dogs.
They found "an alarming amount" of cougar tracks that showed the cats had been on porches, in sheds and under cars.
Mary Tyler Moore
Television great Mary Tyler Moore, the beloved star of "The Dick Van Dyke Show" and "The Mary Tyler Moore Show," died Wednesday in Connecticut, her publicist confirmed. She was 80.
The vivacious brunette performer transformed the image of women on television first as Van Dyke's sexy, vulnerable wife Laura Petrie and then as single career girl Mary Richards in her own series. Her work in the two series brought Moore five Emmy Awards, in 1965, 1966, 1973, 1974 and 1976. She won another Emmy for 1993 TV special "Stolen Babies."
Moore was also a powerhouse producer via her MTM production company with then-husband Grant Tinker, producing her own series as well as "The Bob Newhart Show" and spinoff series "Rhoda" and "Lou Grant," among others.
She combined wholesomeness and sex appeal with cracker-jack comedic timing. In many ways Moore was a throwback to Hollywood golden era leading ladies like Myrna Loy and Jean Arthur, but with a decidedly updated twist.
Her role as Laura Petrie, the suburban wife of comedy writer Rob Petrie, also represented a step forward for the portrayal of women on television. Though they maintained separate beds, the Petries otherwise shared an active, romantic marital life. And unlike Desi Arnaz on "I Love Lucy," Van Dyke's character was not threatened by his wife's talents or her intelligence.
The series made Moore a star, and she worked on films under contract at Universal. With the exception of "Thoroughly Modern Millie," in which she played third fiddle to Julie Andrews and the scene-stealing Carol Channing, the studio's attempts to fashion her in the Doris Day mold was unsuccessful. Moore also tried her hand at the Broadway stage, co-starring with Richard Chamberlain in David Merrick's musical version of Truman Capote's "Breakfast at Tiffany's."
With the help of her second husband, producer Tinker, and the talents of creators James L. Brooks and Allan Burns, she fashioned a new series, "Mary Tyler Moore," which debuted on CBS in 1970 and revolutionized the sitcom. Even more than the Van Dyke show, it focused heavily on the central character's work life.
And in this case the central character was a single woman, Mary Richards, carving out a life for herself in Minneapolis. Moore was the pragmatic and delightfully vulnerable center of a strong ensemble cast that included Ed Asner, Valerie Harper, Betty White, and Ted Knight. "Mary Tyler Moore" raked in the accolades during its run and thereafter was a permanent fixture in television syndication.
"The Mary Tyler Moore Show" won the Emmy for comedy show three years in a row, was named as one of the most influential TV shows of all time on numerous lists, and was one of the first shows to tackle issues including equal pay for women, divorce, infidelity, homosexuality, premarital sex, and infertility. Moore's character even recovers from an addiction to sleeping pills during the show.
After "Mary Tyler Moore," which Moore retired after seven seasons, she tried other series including sitcom "Mary," variety hour "The Mary Tyler Moore Hour" and "New York News," another attempt to recapture the magic of her landmark '70s TV series. There was even an effort to reunite her with Harper, her Rhoda sidekick on "Mary Tyler Moore," starting with a TV movie, "Mary and Rhoda."
The actress finally snared a role that challenged her abilities in Robert Redford's Oscar-winning directorial debut, 1980's "Ordinary People." She played completely against type as a stern, cold matriarch, living in denial after the death of her favorite son. The beautifully wrought performance brought her an Oscar nomination. Then in the mid '90s she was again offered a film role, supporting this time, that displayed her range: As a neurotic, overbearing Jewish mother in "Flirting With Disaster," Moore was hilarious in a completely different way than in any of her TV comedy appearances.
Moore also returned to Broadway stage, finding some success in the drama "Whose Life Is It Anyway?" and taking home a special Tony for her performance. She also appeared on the Rialto in A.R. Gurney's "Sweet Sue" in 1987.
On TV, she carved a niche for herself in TV movies, most notably the breast cancer tale "First You Cry" and the miniseries "Lincoln," in which she played Mary Todd Lincoln. She drew Emmy nominations for both. There was also "Finnegan Begin Again," "Heartsounds" and "Just Between Friends," which brought her good reviews and award recognition.
Moore continued in TV movies during the 2000s, including the sentimental "Miss Lettie and Me," and she guested on series including "That '70s Show," "Lipstick Jungle" and, in 2011, "Hot in Cleveland," where she reunited with her "Mary Tyler Moore Show" co-star Betty White. There was also a reunion show, 2004's "The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited," in which she participated.
In 1983, after almost 20 years of marriage, Moore separated from Tinker, who had gone on to run NBC and sold to her his share in MTM Enterprises, which she subsequently sold. The company had been very successful with several spinoffs from the "Mary Tyler Moore Show" as well as other hit series like "Hill Street Blues" and "WKRP in Cincinnati."
Moore was born in Brooklyn but grew up in Los Angeles, where she attended Immaculate Heart High School and married Richard Meeker at age 18. She broke into performing through television commercials, memorably as the Hotpoint elf on "The Ozzie and Harriet Show" in the mid-'50s. Her first regular TV assignment was on the TV series "Richard Diamond, Private Detective" in 1959 as the urbane investigator's assistant, though only her legs and hands were visible onscreen. It led to guest spots on such series as "77 Sunset Strip" and "Hawaiian Eye."
Moore had been interviewed by Danny Thomas to play his daughter on the series "Make Room for Daddy," and he remembered her and recommended her to Carl Reiner when he was casting "The Dick Van Dyke Show." After a shaky start in 1961, the sitcom afforded Moore the chance to show off her comedic gifts and sometimes even her song-and-dance abilities.
The actress penned two memoirs. In "After All," released in 1995, she acknowledged that she was an alcoholic; "Growing Up Again: Life, Loves, and Oh Yeah, Diabetes" (2009) centers on living with type 1 diabetes. Moore had been diagnosed with diabetes in her 20s and was a tireless crusader for the disease via the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.
In May 2002, cabler TV Land unveiled a statue in downtown Minneapolis of the character Moore made famous on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show." The statue depicts the iconic moment in the show's opening credits in which Mary throws her tam o'shanter in the air. Moore was present for the ceremony.
Moore received the SAG lifetime achievement award in 2012 from Dick Van Dyke.
In 1980, her only son Richard (by first husband Meeker) died accidentally from a gunshot wound at the age of 24.
Moore is survived by her third husband, Dr. S. Robert Levine, whom she married in 1983. Tinker died in November.
Mary Tyler Moore