Sunday Reads: Put the clock back…and shake a tail feather?

871feea0f3f2230ebd5195db612a464bGood Morning

Hey, did you remember to turn your clock back an hour?

This “fall back” time change is always much easier on me personally…springing ahead for daylight savings time in Spring is a living hell that first 48 hours.  I really wish we could remain like this always, but whatever…let’s just get the post started already.

Hey, since I’ve started with the clock thing, this cartoon that was used over at Daily Banter seemed like a perfect choice: Turn The Clocks Back |


Artist – Tom Stiglich

If you want to check out the latest info on the LAX shooting, that link to DB refers to this article from the Southern Poverty Law Center:

Hatewatch Exclusive: Alleged LAX Shooter Referenced ‘Patriot’ Conspiracy Theories | Hatewatch

The 23-year-old man who allegedly killed a TSA official at Los Angeles International Airport yesterday was carrying a one-page “manifesto” that included references to the “New World Order,” the Federal Reserve and “fiat currency,” according to a knowledgeable source with ranking law enforcement contacts.

Paul Anthony Ciancia, who allegedly wounded three other TSA workers before being shot and critically wounded himself, also expressed antagonism toward the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and its chief until she resigned in August, Janet Napolitano, the source said. Ciancia’s note called former Secretary Napolitano a “bull dyke” and contained the phrase “FU Janet Napolitano,” the source said.

Ciancia’s language and references seemed to put him squarely in the conspiracy-minded world of the antigovernment “Patriot” movement. The New World Order refers to a longstanding conspiracy theory that today, in its most popular iteration, claims that global elites are plotting to form a socialistic “one-world government” that would crush American freedoms. Often, the root of the alleged conspiracy is traced to the 1913 creation of the Federal Reserve and the adoption of fiat currency — paper money that is not backed by gold, as it was once was in the U.S.

More details at the link.

Other recent updates on the LAX shooting:

LAX Suspect Set out to Kill Multiple TSA Officers – ABC News

At Los Angeles International Airport, Two Lives Collide in a Fatal Instant –

It sounds like Ciancia was part of the crazy that can be found in the following links:

Conspiracy Theory | | Liberal Politics Blog and Podcast | We Cover the World

Apparently the San Antonio Tea Party is convinced that designating the Alamo as a World Heritage site actually means the U.N. is going to take over.

Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson had to calm fears this week after the former president of the local Tea Party warned that the U.N. may usurp their beloved landmark.

George Rodriguez, former president of the San Antonio Tea Party, stirred up rumors in a piece titled ‘The New Battle of the Alamo.’

Rodriguez said Wednesday that he never stated that the U.N. would take control, but that he merely provided a “cautionary tale.”

“I’m just constantly saying ‘may’ or ‘might,’” he explained. “I’m never once saying that this is going to happen. We need to be aware.”

The U.N. ‘may’ or ‘might’ take over the Alamo. And monkeys may or might fly out of Rodriguez’s ass. We need to be aware.

Let’s assume for a moment that the U.N. actually was poised to take over the Alamo.

What would they do with it? Would they plant a Mexican flag on top of it just to stick a finger in the eye of Real Americans as the U.N is wont to do?

Where did Rodriquez get these crazy ideas?

A similar version was posted Tuesday on, a website linked to radio talk show host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who spoke at an Oct. 19 gun-rights rally at the Alamo.

That would be the same Alex Jones who influenced the LAX shooter (New World Order phrases and other connections coming to light.) There is also some info about Beck influencing Ciania as well…but to get back to the other crazies.

This next link is via Susie Madrak » Blog Archive » Hot Springs, Arkansas :

You have to read this entire post to fully appreciate it. I will post the last paragraph…but go read the whole post. Bilgrimage: How’s That Shutdown Thing Playing in the Heartland? I Have a Story for You

If you think that Republicans have learned their lesson from the recent shutdown and now understand that pulling ugly tricks like shutting down the federal government to score political points is immature, irrational, dysfunctional, and harmful even to those who wanted the shutdown, I suggest that you think again. And that you visit the springs at the national park in Hot Springs, and listen a while to the hair-raising earful you’ll hear from the very angry, out-of-control white christianists who form the backbone of the Republican party now in places like Hot Springs, Arkansas.

You might learn something. Though you might not like what you learn.

I have to agree with that statement…because I may not be living in Hot Springs, but here in Banjoville I hear the same thing…the Republicans have not learned a thing from the shutdown. And every word spoken from those assholes at that park could have come from the mouths of the folks that live around here in my redneck of the woods. It is a scary thing.

One more link on the GOP: Scrooge Republicans prefer Pentagon White Elephants to Food Stamps for Poor Children | Informed Comment

As of today, Republican cuts in food stamp support present a challenged nearly 23 million American households in keeping their children from hunger. Some 76% of SNAP or food stamp-receiving households include children, the elderly or a disabled person, and 83% of all SNAP assistance goes to such challenged households. The image of a single male lying on a couch drinking beer bought with food stamps is just cheap Scrooge propaganda.

Note that these families are in dire straits not because they are lazy but because Republican lawmakers reduced regulation and oversight of Wall Street banks and investment companies, who promptly engaged in unwise or illegal practices that crashed the US economy in 2008 and after. There has been no recovery to speak of for the non-rich since. Americans who resort to food stamps have increased by 25% in the past four years. So these struggling American families are being punished by the GOP twice– many of them lost their jobs because of bad banking practices or because the Bush economic downturn. And now the minor amelioration of their condition offered by the US government has been cut back.

These are the actions of a Scrooge ruling class, of mean rich white people (though in fact the majority of recipients of food stamps are also white). The same GOP congressmen ran up huge budget deficits for the benefit of their constituencies in the Bush era, and wasted over a trillion dollars on wars of aggression abroad, but now all of a sudden are interested in balanced budgets and austerity.

No surprise with that one, Juan Cole continues that post with breakdowns on just where Congress could have found the money to avoid the cutbacks on SNAP funds.

I think we should take a page out of the history books and pick some new nicknames for these assholes in Congress. Alfonso the Slobberer and Ivar the Boneless: Worst Nicknames for Medieval Rulers

Medieval kings and rulers often got nicknames. If you were lucky, you would be called the Good, the Great, or the Hammer (honourable mention goes to John II, Duke of Cleves, who got nickname the Babymaker for having fathered 63 illegitimate children). Those monarchs who didn’t perform as well might get the name the Bad, the Cruel, or the Mad.

However, a few men from the Middle Ages had rather unusual nicknames, and probably ones they really didn’t want. Here is our list of the top ten worst nicknames given to medieval rulers.

Alfonso the Slobberer

Alfonso IX, King of León and Galicia – he was a fairly successful ruler of the northern part of Iberia during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, managing to stay on the throne for 42 years. However, the North African scholar Ibn Khaldun noted that he was called Baboso or the Slobberer because he would foam at the mouth whenever he got upset.

That is funny…There are some good names to choose from, my favorite has to be this one, for say Ted Cruz:

Constantine the Name of Shit

Constantine V was the Byzantine emperor from 741 to 775, but his harsh stand against the use of icons in the Christian church earned him many critics. They gave him the nickname Kopronymos, which means ‘Name of Shit’, allegedly because when Constantine was an infant be defecated in the baptismal font.

Although, it would not be from shitting in the bath water…it would be from spewing so much bullshit from his mouth!

Okay, one more “history link” for you, this time from LG&M: Mapping Civil War Syphilis

This 1875 map charting syphilis in the Union during the Civil War is awesome. Not sure what was going on in upstate New York, but it seems like a scary place to have sex in the 1860s.

Damn, high numbers upstate New York and in areas of Kentucky. More here: Syphilis: A map of the disease during the Civil War.

This map, printed in 1875 by the Army’s Provost Marshal General’s office, uses data gleaned from the Union Army draft during the Civil War to show the prevalence of syphilis across various Union states. An early attempt to track disease using cartography, the map took advantage of the wealth of data provided by conscription examinations. It cannot trace causes of outbreaks but does succeed in highlighting the locations that yielded up highly syphilitic male populations (Waukesha, Wis.; Lexington, Ky.; and Boston, among others).


An 1864 Manual of Instructions for Enlisting and Discharging Soldiers, issued by the assistant surgeon of the U.S. Army, instructed examining physicians to reject all sufferers who had shown signs of syphilitic infection through “eruptions of the skin and mucus membranes.” “The constitutional infection,” the surgeon wrote, “is almost never cured, and will be surely roused into activity by the exposure and unfavorable hygienic conditions to which the soldier is subjected.”

Elsewhere in the report that contains this map, a chart compared draftees’ syphilitic status to other factors, some of them seemingly more related than others: “social condition” (many more single men than married were sufferers); “complexion” (“light” was more syphilitic than “dark”); age (those between 20 and 25 were most at risk); height (incomprehensibly, being between 63 and 67 inches was a slight risk factor); and “nativity” (South Americans, “Spanish,” and Mexicans were recorded as most commonly infected).


Another blog post of interest for many of you: Cross Post – 13 Myths Hollywood Uses to Hide Discrimination Against Women Directors | Women and Hollywood I will just put up the last five…

5. It’s okay for women to direct small, independent femme-themed films, but men can handle all genres. And women certainly can’t be trusted with big budget features or episodic television, even if they are female driven stories.

Women can too! It’s risible and hypocritical that almost all female driven stories are directed by men.

6. It’s okay to say “We don’t hire women on this show” (we hear it all the time), but it’s not okay to say “We don’t hire African Americans/Asians/Latinos, etc… on this show.”

Just think about that for a minute…

7. Women studio executives are helping hire more women film and television directors.

There are more women studio executives today than ever, but fewer women directors. Sony’s Amy Pascal could only conjure up the name of ONE women director when asked recently, and even remembering Kathryn Bigelow seemed to require some strained mental effort.

8. The Director’s Guild of America really wants to help increase employment opportunities for its women members.

That’s why the ratio of male to female directors has remained in stasis for over two decades. The DGA is the organization charged with oversight of studio compliance of studio agreements to hire more women in accordance with U.S. civil rights laws.

9. In America, we protect freedom of speech–women can speak out about discrimination in the film & TV industry without FEAR of reprisals.

The #1 reason women do not speak out about discrimination in Hollywood is that they are afraid of getting BLACKLISTED.

10. America has a higher ratio of women directors than other nations around the world.

Almost all other countries in the world honor women directors more than the United States of America.

11. Women directors are not successful because they don’t know how to get organized.

That sometimes seems true. But women did manage to get the right to vote in America after several hundred years of fighting for suffrage.

12. Hollywood has lots of wonderful diversity programs that help women break in to directing.

Not true. And over 20 years of failed Guild diversity programs have resulted in NO CHANGE in the ratios of women directors.

13. Women directors succeed or fail based on merit and their films will get good reviews and big budgets for marketing & distribution if their films are good.

Not true. Recent studies prove that since 80% of film critics are males, reviews of women’s films are disproportionately harsh. Women’s features suffer from disproportionately low P&A budgets, and on average, open on many fewer screens.

Oh wait, that was seven…couldn’t help it, as those were the big ones in that important list.

The last link for today deals with dog tails…Wag The Dog: How Your Pet’s Tail Gives Clues To His Mental State

You might think a dog with a wagging tail is always a happy dog, but it might not actually be that simple. New research suggests that dogs react differently to other dogs’ tail wags, depending on if the tail flips primarily to the right or the left side.

What seems like a subtle difference, as shown in the video below, may end up carrying a lot of meaning:

A new study from a group of Italian researchers, published on Thursday in the journal Current Biology, builds upon the authors’ previous work on tail-wagging. In a 2007 study, the researchers examined the difference between a dog’s tail-wagging responses when confronted with his or her owner, an unfamiliar person, a strange and dominant dog, and a cat. They noticed that the dogs tended to swish their tails more to the right when interacting with people, or a cat; when interacting with a strange dog, they tended to wag to the left. The researchers suspected that dogs wag to the left when experiencing negative emotions (anxiety at being confronted with a dominant dog) and wag to the right when experiencing more-positive sensations (excitement at seeing their owner or a cat to potentially chase).

It is a bit difficult to determine the left or right tail wag, but if you go to the link and read on it describes how the scientist did the study and explains more about their findings.

What I want to know is, what if you have a pug…that has a tight curled-up ball of a tail? My pug Brutus would hardly wag his tail, it would just barely move…like someone stuck a Cinnabun on his ass and it would pathetically limp over a centimeter from side to side once in a while.

Y’all have a great Sunday, and tell us…what’s going on in your world this morning?

21 Comments on “Sunday Reads: Put the clock back…and shake a tail feather?”

  1. Pat Johnson says:

    Day after day the Right Wing engages in some pretty far fetched “theories”, particularly on talk radio which is broadcast throughout the nation. It has its appeal on those who are constantly being told they “under attack” from the Left which feeds into their fantasies.

    Apparently this latest shooter was caught up in that crapola, put on his warrior uniform, and made the decision to shoot as many people as he could for the sake of the cause.

    The loons who broadcast these shows are made up of the militia mentality, the religious nutjobs, and the racist haters and they go unchallenged in regions that embrace this kind of thinking.

    There will be more of these commonplace events carried out by those whose critical thinking skills have been damaged by listening to this stuff because they believe in what is broadcast as “facts”.

    What has divided this nation are those who advance these theories without consequences that their vile rhetoric is covered by the First Amendment.

    With a nation as uneducated in current events as we are, whose citizens have little clue as how the government works, who base their preferences on optics, and who have no understanding of history, we can look forward to more and more of these events playing out by those whose emotional levels have been terrorized by the fear these broadcasters perpetrate.

    Throw in the easy access to weapons and there is no way to get the genie back into the bottle.

  2. ecocatwoman says:

    Lots of interesting & diverse topics to read about. I do feel compelled to comment on the tag-wagging study. Knowing that canines were the first species domesticated by humans, I found these links with differing info on just how long humans have had dogs as “companions”: and

    What struck me regarding this new study is a question: what has taken our “supreme” species so long to even study this? We actually know so little about dog behavior and even less about cat behavior. Our species, I think, has spent most of our time trying to discover what separates humans from “those animals” instead of learning more about non-human animal behavior & all that we have in common with them. Had we done that it certainly would have improved our treatment and care of them, along with more compassion toward them.

    JJ, my first thought to your question about Brutus, your pug, and the tail wagging was that pugs are a genetically modified creature. Their small curved tails were a trait chosen by humans that they liked and bred for. Consider that most scientists feel that dogs evolved from wolves – that means teacup poodles to Great Danes. Dogs have been bred to meet humans’ needs, standards of beauty, and convenience of humans, certainly not for improved health of the animals themselves. Think of the inherent respiratory problems suffered by most, if not all, pugs with their smashed in faces. The same respiratory problems exist in Persian cats.

    Now I’m off to read more of the interesting links you posted. Ya’ll have a great day.

  3. List of X says:

    Ciancia was an Alex Jones fan? So was Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, apparently. If Jones were Muslim, Republicans would be demanding a drone strike to take him out.

  4. RalphB says:

    Working as designed, I assune…

    Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Voter ID law snags former House Speaker Jim Wright

    FORT WORTH — Former House Speaker Jim Wright was denied a voter ID card Saturday at a Texas Department of Public Safety office.

    “Nobody was ugly to us, but they insisted that they wouldn’t give me an ID,” Wright said

    Wright and his assistant, Norma Ritchson, went to the DPS office on Woodway Drive to get a State of Texas Election Identification Certificate. Wright said he realized earlier in the week that the photo identifications he had — a Texas driver’s license that expired in 2010 and a TCU faculty ID — do not satisfy requirements of the voter ID law, enacted in 2011 by the Legislature. DPS officials concurred.

    • RalphB says:

      These people are just fucking embarassing.

      At this point, several people in the audience stormed out in fury. One woman yelled “We believe in God!” and left with three children, thus ensuring that people across America would read about the incident and conclude that Waco is as nutty as they’d always suspected.

    • RalphB says:

      Darwin award competitors survived, so far…

      Raw Story: Three men arrested after accidental shooting during ‘Bigfoot hunt’

      The Rogers County, Oklahoma Sheriff’s Department arrested three men after one of them was accidentally shot. Authorities are still searching for the gun used in the shooting.

      According to Sheriff Scott Walton, the three men were hunting Bigfoot late Saturday night, when one of them was spooked by what he thought might be the legendary beast and fired his weapon, hitting his friend in the back.

      “When you start off with an explanation like that, do you believe anything after that?” Sheriff Walton said.

  5. Well, I am off to the closest “mall” to get Bebe some “supportive footwear”…she got her cast off on Thursday and needs to change her style of shoes.

    Last night I was dreaming that I battled the little court jester in the movie The Masque of the Red Death. (I saw it for the first time last week.) The Masque of the Red Death (1964) – IMDb

    It must have been a tough fight because apparently I yelled out, loud enough that Bebe came into my room worried, asking what was wrong…my sleepy response to her…”nothing, I’m growling at a midget.”

    Y’all have a great day.

  6. dakinikat says:

    I don’t think we’re shocked here but it’s worth reading to figure out how information deprived our country really is …

  7. dakinikat says:

    Lost Egyptian city revealed

    Heraclion … some very kewl kewl stuff

  8. dakinikat says:

    Plutocrats vs. Populists

    Consider the methods with which plutocrats actually exercise power in America’s New Gilded Age. The Koch brothers, who have found a way to blend their business interests and personal ideological convictions with the sponsorship of a highly effective political network, are easy to latch on to partly because this self-dealing fits so perfectly with our imagined idea of a nefarious plutocracy and partly because they have had such an impact. But the Kochs are the exception rather than the rule, and even in their case the grass roots they nurtured now follow their script imperfectly.

    MOST plutocrats are translating their vast economic power into political influence in two principle ways. The first is political lobbying strictly focused on the defense or expansion of their economic interests. This is very specific work, with each company or, at most, narrowly defined industry group advocating its self-interest: the hedge fund industry protecting the carried-interest tax loophole from which it benefits, or agribusiness pushing for continued subsidies. Often, these are fights for lower taxes and less regulation, but they are motivated by the bottom line, not by strictly political ideals, and they benefit very specific business people and companies, not the business community as a whole.

    interesting argument here

  9. NW Luna says:

    As for the Alamo — having once been in San Antonio, where it was so hot and humid I could barely survive — I could not understand what the fuss was about. IMO, should have let ’em have it and headed for greener pastures.