Ah, Good Morning!
I am sitting here on my bed, with my legs crossed, and my laptop propped up on top of them…it’s cold in here, so my blankets are up over my head. Funny. Just like a child who stays up late at night, reading under their covers with a flashlight. (Damn, do kids even do that these days?) I feel quite insignificant under these cozy blankets, and that was before I read this article on Congress. Now I can add that I am feeling mad and insignificant. Congress and its men. Specifically, the House of Representatives. House committee chairs all men
At the top of House committees, it’s a man’s world.
Not a single woman will lead any of the major House committees in the 113th Congress.
After a day of meetings closed to the public, the House Republican Steering Committee announced an all-male slate of committee chairs, including 12 returning lawmakers who will head up some of the most important panels in Washington.
The top female contender to lead a major committee was Michigan Rep. Candice Miller, who lost a battle for the chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee to Texas Rep. Mike McCaul.
Women did make big gains in Republican leadership. Washington Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers will be House Republican Conference chairwoman, Kansas Rep. Lynn Jenkins will be her vice chairwoman and North Carolina Rep. Virginia Foxx will be conference secretary.
New chairmen include Reps. Jeb Hensarling of Texas atop Financial Services, Ed Royce of California on Foreign Affairs, Bob Goodlatte of Virginia on Judiciary, Lamar Smith of Texas on the Science, Space and Technology Committee and Bill Shuster of Pennsylvania atop Transportation and Infrastructure.
Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan was the only lawmaker to obtain a waiver to bypass House GOP rules to remain as a chairman for a fourth term. He will lead the Budget Committee again.
House Democrats are likely to have five women as ranking members committees: Rep. Nita Lowey (N.Y.) or Rep. Marcy Kaptur (Ohio) on Appropriations, Rep. Maxine Waters (Calif.) on Financial Services, Rep. Louise Slaughter (N.Y.) on Rules, Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (Texas) on Science and Rep. Nydia Velazquez (N.Y.) on Small Business.
…the Voice of the GOP Gated Community is very disappointed by his so-called ‘elected representative’ for talking about going off Grover Norquist’s reservation:
In a 900-word indictment of Sen. Saxby Chambliss, RedState editor and CNN contributor Erick Erickson described the Georgia Republican Tuesday as “waffling around like a dog off its leash for the first time.”…The RedState post, which laid out the conservative case in full against Chambliss, read a lot like a campaign manifesto, which maybe it was: Erickson said Tuesday evening on his radio show he’d been approached “by serious people” to consider a primary challenge and is giving it “prayerful consideration.”
An Erickson primary challenge would certainly make for great political theater. He’s won elected office before—he served one term on the Macon City Council—and could complicate Chambliss’s re-election bid. But as a leading conservative blogger, radio talk show host and frequent cable television presence, Erickson’s also got a long trail of writing and video that might not be so helpful in a statewide campaign…
Murphy the Trickster God does not love me enough to make this travesty happen. Almost certainly, Erickson is just scrambling to re-establish his Master-of-the-Universe status with the RedState tribalists while not losing his ‘sane moderate’ credentials at CNN, because C.R.E.A.M. But every
bloviatorpolitical blogger looks in the mirror and sees a solon, and a ‘true conservative’ challenge to that dishonorable pus-sack Chambliss (the chickenhawk who got his seat by attacking actual veteran Max Cleland) might cause me to break my lifelong commitment to never donating to a Republican primary contender.
Please, someone get me a bucket…and a cleaning lady. Maybe speculating on a Erickson ticket is yet another sign that the Mayans were right about that end of the world thing. If asshole aka son of Erick is seriously considering running, my little part of Georgia will surely love to have the head of Red State as their representative. I am so sick of all of this.
Dakinikat called this weeks ago, New Treasury Secretary Jack Lew: Chief of Staff will get the job.
I was considering doing a post with chin-stroking speculation about who the next Treasury secretary will be, but instead let me just tell you. It’s going to be Jacob Lew, the current White House chief of staff.
Why? Well, because the White House has decided that it wants the Treasury secretary to be deeply involved with budget issues, and who better than a former Office of Management and Budget director? What’s more, Obama has been working with Lew for a while now and likes him, and they’ve been working well together. All the other ideas kicking around involve bringing someone in from the outside who’d be taking over midstream and trying to establish a working relationship with the president and the Treasury team while simultaneously hammering out thorny bargains with House Republicans. It doesn’t really work.
See the link if you want to read the rest. Personally it is old news to us, because Dak brought up these points before…
There has been another killing of an unarmed young black man in Florida. Jordan Davis: Another Unarmed Young Black Male Gunned Down | Angry Black Lady Chronicles
Another senseless shooting death of a young unarmed black man in Florida:
Jordan Davis, 17, and some other teens were sitting in a SUV in a parking lot when Dunn parked next to them and asked the youths to turn down their music.
Jordan Davis and Dunn argued over the music, then Dunn, who is a gun collector, pulled a gun and shot eight or nine times, hitting Jordan twice, reports the Orlando Sentinel.
Jordan Davis’ father Ron Davis said his unarmed son died in the arms of a friend in the SUV.
Dunn and his girlfriend took off, but witnesses wrote down their license plate number, according to the police.
The couple was staying in a Jacksonville hotel when they heard a news report Saturday morning about the shooting, so they drove home to Satellite Beach, Florida.
Dunn was arrested at his home on Saturday and charged with murder and attempted murder. He is being held without bail.
Because this occurred in Florida, we can expect another round of likely unfruitful discussions about the “stand your ground” laws that were at issue in the Trayvon Martin case. There will be handwringing and a public outcry, but nothing will be done, ultimately, because the ALEC-sponsored gun laws in this country are just fine, and if black kids don’t want to get shot for wearing a hoodie, or playing loud music, then that’s just too damn bad. They should stay home.
It is such a sad thing to read about…think about it for a moment. Makes you mad too?
I don’t want to finish on a down note.
Check out this feature from Vanity Fair, Photos: Iconic Film Stills Photographed in Their Real-Life Locations
Journalist Christopher Maloney walks to work through Central Park on most days, and last summer he made an observation. “Every day I walked past tons of locations from popular—and not-so-popular—movies,” he explains. He decided to start printing out stills from the films and comparing them to their real-life counterparts. “Since then, I’ve re-created more than 250 scenes around the city.” His work—which includes movies as varied as Midnight Run, The French Connection, and Shaft—can be found at his Web site, FILMography. “I’m actually surprised that locations used in the 1940s and 1950s haven’t changed that much,” he says. “But places used in movies last year are virtually unrecognizable.” New York also changes depending on the director, Maloney adds. “You can tell just how much filmmakers like Woody Allen and Martin Scorsese and Spike Lee love the city. It’s sometimes hard to believe that those three very different places are all the same city.”
Look at this:
Can you guess what film that is from? Yes, it is Cary Grant…in?
There is also this interesting read from Gin and Tacos: THE CONTEST EVERYBODY LOSES It is a post about writing…crowdsourcing and giving the “middle finger.” Enjoy it…I did.
And I have to end this post with this funny cartoon. (Although I think it is missing something.) 11/28 Mike Luckovich cartoon: Stones | Mike Luckovich
There should be a big set of lips on at least one of those stick figures!
Have a great day and let us know what is on your mind!
Last night I wrote about Mitt Romney’s claim that he “longed” to serve in Vietnam, but instead sacrificed his fondest dream by living in France for the war years. But he wasn’t always averse to wearing a uniform. When he was in prep school at Cranbrook, he once played a “prank” in which he impersonated a police officer and stopped a car in which four of his “friends” were out on a double date.
But until I read this piece by Joe Conason, I had no idea that Romney had repeatedly dressed as a Michigan state trooper even when he was a student at Stanford.
According to Robin Madden, one of Romney’s Stanford classmates, Romney once showed him a state trooper’s uniform and said he’d gotten it from his father George Romney, who was then Governor of Michigan. Madden told Conason:
“He told us that he had gotten the uniform from his father,” George Romney, then the Governor of Michigan, whose security detail was staffed by uniformed troopers. “He told us that he was using it to pull over drivers on the road. He also had a red flashing light that he would attach to the top of his white Rambler.”
In Madden’s recollection, confirmed by his wife Susan, who also attended Stanford during those years, “we thought it was all pretty weird. We all thought, ‘Wow, that’s pretty creepy.’ And after that, we didn’t have much interaction with him,” although both Madden and Romney were prep school boys living in the same dorm, called Rinconada.
Is there no end to this man’s weirdness? Just one more Romney story and then I’ll move on to something else. The New York Times has a front page story today on Romney’s neighbors in La Jolla and how annoyed they are by him.
ON Dunemere Drive, it seems as if just about everyone has a gripe against the owners of No. 311.
The elderly woman next door complains that her car is constantly boxed into her driveway. A few houses over, a gay couple grumbles that their beloved ocean views are in jeopardy. And down the street, a widow grouses that her children’s favorite dog-walking route has been disrupted.
Bellyaching over the arrival of an irritating new neighbor is a suburban cliché, as elemental to the life on America’s Wisteria Lanes as fastidiously edged lawns and Sunday afternoon barbecues.
But here in La Jolla, a wealthy coast-hugging enclave of San Diego, the ordinary resident at the end of the block is no ordinary neighbor.
He is Mitt Romney.
The biggest complaints seem to be about the Romney’s plans to turn their beachfront home into a giant “McMansion. The article says that the Romneys haven’t asked any of the neighbors over to their house, but Ann and Mitt do take walks and interact people they see along the way.
Mr. Romney and his wife take regular walks around La Jolla, exchanging pleasantries with fellow strollers and occasionally enforcing the law. A young man in town recalled that Mr. Romney confronted him as he smoked marijuana and drank on the beach last summer, demanding that he stop.
The issue appears to be a recurring nuisance for the Romneys. Mr. Quint, who lives on the waterfront near Mr. Romney, said that a police officer had asked him, on a weekend when the candidate was in town, to report any pot smoking on the beach. The officer explained to him that “your neighbors have complained,” Mr. Quint recalled. “He was pretty clear that it was the Romneys.”
I hope our libertarian readers are paying attention.
The Washington Post reports that there has been another massacre in Syria.
Two activists in Hama said Wednesday that at least 30 people, and possibly many more, had been killed in Qubair, northwest of Hama, after the militias known as the shabiha raided the village. Government forces had blocked roads leading to the village and prevented activists from gathering evidence of the killings, they said.
But one of the activists, Asem Abu Mohammed, said he had received frantic calls for help from people in the village starting in the late afternoon.
Another activist, Mousab al-Hamadi, said people in the village told him that many women and children were among those hacked to death with knives by the militiamen.
Also at the WaPo, there is an interesting graphic piece: Ray Bradbury: 10 of his most prescient predictions. Bradbury apparently foresaw earbuds, Facebook, ATM’s, and E-books!
This story is a couple of days old, but did you hear about the hundreds of mormons and ex-mormons who participated in Salt Lake City’s gay pride march?
They came in suits and skirts, and they drew tears and cheers.
More than 300 current and former members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints participated in the Utah Gay Pride Parade on Sunday as part of a group called Mormons Building Bridges.
“I haven’t recognized them as equals,” one marcher, Emily Vandyke, 50, told the Salt Lake Tribune. “They have been invisible to me.”
She carried a sign with words from a Mormon children’s song: “I’ll walk with you, I’ll talk with you. That’s how I’ll show my love for you.”
It’s a start, anyway.
Another judge has ruled the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional.
The law was challenged by 83-year-old Edith “Edie” Windsor after the federal government failed to recognize her marriage to her partner Thea Spyer, after Spyer’s death in 2009. Her marriage was recognized by the state of New York.
The Defense of Marriage Act was enacted in 1996 and Section 3 of the law, which the case challenged, defined marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman. It prohibited legally married same sex couples from receiving federal benefits.
“Thea and I shared our lives together for 44 years, and I miss her each and every day,” said Windsor. “It’s thrilling to have a court finally recognize how unfair it is for the government to have treated us as though we were strangers.”
U.S. District Court Judge Barbara S. Jones of the Southern District of New York ruled the statue violated the constitution’s guarantee of equal protection because it discriminated against married same sex couples.
This next one is pretty funny: Senator Asks DOJ to Investigate SWAT-ting Attacks on Conservative Bloggers
A number of conservative bloggers allege they have been targeted through the use of harassment tactics such as SWAT-ting (fooling 911 operators into sending emergency teams to their homes), in retaliation for posts they have written, and now Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., has stepped into the matter. He has sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder urging him to investigate the SWAT-ting cases to see if federal laws have been violated.
Who are these bloggers and when were that “SWAT-ted?” Are there videos? Inquiring minds want to see them.
ABC News spoke with two prominent conservative bloggers who were victims of SWAT-ting, a hoax tactic used by some hackers to infiltrate a victim’s phone system, often through voice over IP (VOIP) technology to make calls appear as if they are coming from a residence. The perpetrators call police to report a violent crime at that home to which the police respond, sometimes with SWAT teams.
And ABC names names! Victim 1: Patrick Frey AKA Patterico. Victim 2: Erick Erickson of Red State and CNN fame. Victim 3: Robert Stacy McCain of “The Other McCain.” Victim 4: Ali Akbar, whoever that is. Other victims are referred to but not named. And the culprit? The mysterious Brett Kimberlin, whom the wingers think is a prominent “progressive.”
Brett Kimberlin, a man who was convicted of a series of bombings in Speedway, Indiana in the 1980s and made headlines in 1988 when he claimed to have once sold marijuana to then-vice presidential candidate Dan Quayle….
Kimberlin, who is now the director of a non-profit organization called Justice Through Music, told ABC News that he did not commit or ask anyone to conduct the SWAT-ting hoaxes that were perpetrated against Erickson and Frey.
“Of course not, it’s ridiculous. It’s totally irresponsible for them to even say this,” Kimberlin told ABC News. “There is no truth to anything about the SWAT-ting.”
This is so bizarre. I read all about it at Cannonfire ages ago. I can’t believe ABC News bought into this nonsense.
In crime news, someone mailed body parts to two schools in Vancouver. Naturally, the prime suspect is Luka Rocco Magnotta.
St. George’s senior school student Trevor Leung was working on his computer Tuesday afternoon when he saw the Yahoo news alert: a package of human remains had been discovered in the mail room at the nearby St. George’s junior school.
Leung didn’t know then that it was a human foot. Or that earlier, at about
1 p.m., a package containing a hand had been opened by a staff member at another Vancouver school, False Creek elementary.
By then, investigators in Montreal and Vancouver were on the phone, trying to establish whether the body parts were linked to the murder case involving former Canadian porn actor Luka Rocco Magnotta.
Ugh! Thank goodness that monster is behind bars for now.
George Zimmerman won’t have a second bail hearing until June 29, so he’ll be behind bars for awhile also. The article says that Attorney Mark O’Mara claims that Zimmerman “has learned his lesson.” I guess that will be up to the judge to determine.
Finally, a bit of provincial sports news: The aging Boston Celtics have LeBron James and the Miami Heat on the ropes in the NBA Playoffs.
Boston is the first road team in the series to win just as the Oklahoma City Thunder did in taking a 3-2 Western series lead. Both are trying to to rally from 2-0 deficits, never done in the same conference finals round.
No two teams have ever come back from 2-0 deficits in the same year in the conference finals. The only time it has happened twice during the same stage was 2005, when the Washington Wizards and Dallas Mavericks topped the Chicago Bulls and Houston Rockets in the first round.
“We’re just hanging in there and I tell (them), ‘Hang in, hang in there, don’t overreact,’ ” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said.
Game 6 in the East finals is Thursday in Boston (8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Le Bron is such a choker. He’s loaded with talent but just doesn’t have the necessary fire in the belly.
Now what are you reading and blogging about today?