128 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Monday, February 4th, 2013: Watering Holes

  1. News of the weird:

    Richard III Dig: DNA Confirms Bones Are King’s

    A skeleton found beneath a Leicester car park has been confirmed as that of English king Richard III.

    Experts from the University of Leicester said DNA from the bones matched that of descendants of the monarch’s family.

    Lead archaeologist Richard Buckley, from the University of Leicester, told a press conference to applause: “Beyond reasonable doubt it’s Richard.”

    Richard, killed in battle in 1485, will be reinterred in Leicester Cathedral.

    • Soon to be 10 years old Amber thought this was cool. She’s a budding scientist and was all over ‘how did they prove it’???

    • Fascinating piece of archealogy and its going to reingite the debate over whethjer or not the man was a monster as is portrayed by his enemies the Tudors (and in this respect Shakespeare does nothing but toady up to the Tudors in his famous play) or whether he was unfairly vilified – a case of ‘history being written by the winners’.

      They’ve answered the question of his physical deformity and confirmed several historicall accounts of his death, which will lend those chroniclers further weight in the anaylsis of the times.

      The DNA comes from a descendant of his elder sister

    • I will see if I can get a guest post pulled together for this story later this week (or weekend) – he really is a fascinating subject: usurper, murderer, machiavellian politician and regicide? Or capable soldier, loyal brother, husband and father, creator of England’s first systems of welfare and judicial systems that helped the poor….?

  2. John Kerry is speaking live from the State Department, and on MSNBC, Tuck the Choad instead has a report on the Python hunt in Florida.

  3. Weekend thoughts on how Abortion and Gun Control could be made to interact in positive fashion:

    Abortion rights are protected, according to the Supreme Court in its Roe v. Wade decision, by the โ€˜right to privacyโ€™ implicit in the Fourth Amendment. Gun ownership rights are, as we all know and are constantly reminded by gun owners, the NRA, gun manufacturers, etc. ad infinitum, protected by the Second Amendment.

    Hereโ€™s the thing, though: abortion and guns have one commonality: both do only one thing. Kill. Now, Republicans, Teabaggers, and hyper-religious kooks everywhere are leaving no stones unturned in their efforts to rid the nation of abortions everywhere. The most bizarre efforts include (a) the legally-enforced shutting down of abortion clinics by each and all possible means; (b) the mandating of vaginal ultrasounds prior to allowing an otherwise constitutional ergo legal abortion; (c) in one state (New Mexico) a Republican state legislator is planning on introducing a bill which would not disallow abortion, but which would criminalize the doctor(s) who carried out the termination procedures.

    Based on the above, my recommendations for gun control are as follows:

    1. Use any โ€˜legalโ€™ means possible to force the closure of each and all gun sale shops everywhere. Zoning regulations, closet size, the way the doors are hinged, security, . . . name it, whatever works. Regulate sufficiently to force every one of the damn places to close, permanently. (I donโ€™t recommend murdering gun show owners at church on Sunday, but do recognize that it could happen).

    2. As part of the gun purchasing regime, mandate that every potential purchaser must undergo, as part of his background check, a rectal ultrasound and not be allowed to complete the purchase for 72 hrs following. Nothing will be learned, of course, but it will cause embarrassment and potential discomfort and therefore, just like the vaginal ultrasound mandate, could well serve a useful purpose.

    3. Allow gun sales to continue (they are constitutionally protected, after all) at gun shows and in the private realm, but take a page from New Mexicoโ€™s proposed bill and CRIMINALIZE the guys who are actually making the sales. Prison terms for each and every one of them.

    Hey, a place to start!

  4. Federal Judge Approves Minnesota Law Banning Campaign Lies

    The statute was challenged five years ago by the 281 CARE Committee and the Citizens for Quality Education, which campaign against ballot initiatives that raise taxes or fees for school district funding.

    The plaintiffs claimed the law violated their free-speech rights and restricted their ability to participate in political debate. They lost their first trial before a federal judge in Minneapolis. But the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the ruling in May 2011.

    That sent the matter to U.S. District Judge Ann Montgomery, who ruled in favor of the defendants, two county attorneys and the state attorney general.

    What would a Presidential election look like, if all the ads had to be truthful? Would it become a forest of frivolous lawsuits, bankrolled by the Koch Brothers, etc?

  5. I didn’t want either team to win last night but the Niners coach showed he’s the bigger whiner.

    Cornerback Chris Culliver of the Niners had a very bad night and good for that. He said earlier in the week on a radio show that he would never accept a gay teammate.

  6. I hadn’t been online yesterday and just perused yesterday’s thread.

    I am so sorry to hear that Honeybump passed away. My sincerest condolences Zooey.

    • I suggest a joint US/Iran project ‘to land three men on Mars before the decade is out.’ A crew consisting of, say, Ahmadinnerjacket, Dubya (who suggested a manned Mars excursion a few years back), and Rove (the big pink thing and the Red Planet — perfect match) would be a nice trio . . . for a one-way trip.

      To help allay the costs, I will do all I can . . . which is to kick in a dollar, maybe two even. It’s the thought that counts, right?

  7. Florida father with assault weapon forces wife to watch as he kills two sons
    By: David Edwards
    A Florida man armed with an weapon that had once been banned under federal law forced his wife to watch as he strangled one of his sons and then shot a second before turning a gun on himself.

    Victoria Flores Zavala told Boynton Beach police that 45-year-old Isidro Zavala went to her home on Saturday with a plan to kill her and their two boys because she had filed for divorce last year, according to WTVJ. But Isidro Zavala decide to spare his wife at the last minute so she could suffer while watching him murder 12-year-old Eduardo Zavala and 11-year-old Mario Zavala.

    โ€œWhat Mrs. Zavala had to go through โ€” watch her children killed before her โ€” is probably the most horrific thing you could ever imagine, at least for me,โ€ Boynton Beach Police Chief G. Matthew Immler explained at a press conference.

    โ€œShe tried fighting him off and begged him to kill her and not the children,โ€ he explained. โ€œHe told her she was going to stay alive and suffer the loss of them.โ€

  8. An atheist philosopher threw down the gauntlet in a debate last Friday at Purdue University over the existence of God. He said he would โ€œturn Christianโ€ if his debating partner explained why God would allow evil in the world.

    The debate was held last Friday between atheist philosopher Alex Rosenberg and Christian theologian William Lane Craig. Rosenberg issued a stark challenge, as the Christian Post reported: โ€œIf Dr. Craig could provide me with any kind of a logical, coherent account that could reconcile the evident fact of the horrors of human and infer human life on this planet over the last 3.5 billion years with the existence of a benevolent, omnipotent agent then I will turn Christian.โ€

    http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/atheist-challenges-christian-theologian-ill-turn-christian-if-you-explain-why-evil

    • That’s my middle sister’s main defense on everything: Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

      Sorry, but that’s one big-assed fucking cop out, and that tweet is despicable. I feel so sorry for Trayvon Martin’s parents, having to see this sort of shit.

      • Do you reckon it comes from the “fair and balanced” travesty? We’re not entitled to defame the dead (or the living). I reckon this guy is just a big ol’ entitlement queen, doing what he wants without regard for others. I also reckon no one will ever suck his dick unless he himself is terribly flexible,

        • He’s a bully who likes to pick on the dead, because they will never rise to challenge his ugly stupid.

          And no one will ever suck his dick. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. BTW, its been so long since I;’e been around, but what a great thread–nothing has changed I The mix of pertinent information, humor, whimsy, camaraderie, and intellectual thought is still prevalent and characteristic of this great community. ,

      • zxbe… hola to you too in still crazy PA! Great to see you, as always, and trying not to be the stranger.

        I’ve been reading about your state’s gerrymandering threat, no doubt you are all over it.

        Running ( actually , walking) to the local shop for a few items, but coming back in minutes. )

    • Okay, then I hereby THREATEN I will sue Trump because he IS an offensive and irksome joke!

      Of course it is entirely my prerogative to maintain my threat for as long as I see fit, in order to appear relevant in the general scheme of things,

      Go back to the shadows, servant of unspeakable hair-badness! Your dark powers will not avail you! YOU SHALL NOT PISS AND MOAN!!!

      • I’d like to sue him for the emotional damage it causes me to see him on my TV. It gives me nightmares that involve short stupid unsmiling men and squirrels.

        • Good evening OIMF!

          IMHO worse than Trump himself, is the nod and a wink deference and attention the mass media pays him. He’s quite a shitty real estate businessman, and clearly a shitty human being with shit for brains regarding social political and broad economic issues upon which he gets to irrelevantly opine constantly across the spectrum of mass media that provides a forum for his ignorance and stamps it with the imprimatur of significance and seriousness by merely airing his idiocy all the while knowing damn well his inclusion in the punditry is based entirely on his entertainment value.

          In addition, Trump himself seems somewhat cognizant of his role as facile provocateur, but likes it AND also IMHO, STILL thinks that despite some ribbing, his opinions are genuinely worth something beyond self-serving publicity value.

          • I always just figured him as a scammer whose unruly hair prevented him from joining the ranks of perfectly coiffed TV preachers.

    • Well Lawrence O’Donnell always says Trump doesn’t have any real money. That’s why he has to do that stupid show and couldn’t stop to run for president. I guess the fact that he’s suing Bill Maher proves he’s broke.

  10. Hey , I found this interesting: FCC proposes nationwide, free, hi-powered WiFi network using as yet unused parts of the available electromagnetic spectrum that are still held in public trust.

    Microsoft and Google are FOR IT, whilst outfits like Comcast and Verizon ( I guess) are against the proposal–they are apparently using the argument that the Gubmint could ‘make’ a billion dollars selling the spectrum to them , and doesn’t the Gubmint NEED the money to pay down the deficit or extend unemployment benefits,or provide an armed guard for every school, or something? .Fiscal irresponsibility!

    Of course their objections ignore some of the math, which is that the various ISPs and telecoms would only be paying $1 billion combined, for a public resource worth much much more, and then would have complete control over it, just like they do with current bandwidth, where the US citizen pays much more for much lower speeds than most other first-world nations due exactly to private company control.

    Google and Microsoft are FOR the proposal because, I guess they see this proposal as being the early 1990s “Internet Superhighway” initiative of Al Gore, version 2.0 ( or a re-boot, if you will). They are looking at the lomongterm, and not just for themselves directly but the economic activity and innovation that high speed, nationwide wifi could provide–be assured they would take their profit-making chunk from this proposal as they have the R&D and intellectual capacity to do so, not to mention the market presence–but again I think they see the proposal as a partnership, where the government (meaning the public, pays for the infrastructure that creates a new market for hardware and software companies large and small–exactly what happened when the Internet was created from DARPANET and NFSNET (and a couple of other networks) between 1989 and 1992 that fueled the greatest economic activity and national in US history since…umm… ever ( I think).

    Links:

    http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/fcc-proposes-public-wifi-networks-spu
    ,
    http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/02/04/1536631/four-benefits-fcc-public-wifi-proposal/

    This is a huge change from the FCC pandering to pearl clutching right-wing agitators fainting over some 2-second clumsy pseudo-sexual antic at a half time Superbowl, and the like. ,

  11. “notmycat” is spending the evening with me. I love playing with her 6-toed feet. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Sadly, I found out she belongs to one of my neighbors, so I can’t whisk her away with me when I move.

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