Friday, March 03, 2006

Hidey in the wild!!

Other people's cats.... Barry in Alaska's gorgeous cat Hidey.

So long to you too, mofo!!

Reuters/Mike Blake

Former Congressman Gets Eight-Plus Years. Personally, I think he should have gotten about 800 years for selling the public trust to the highest bidder.

Corrupt bastard. I hope you're just the first of many republicans to head off to the big house.

Who's the plushiest of them all?

Why, lion kitty Maxx, of course!! Happy friday.

Eeeeeeek!!!!!!!!!!!! A Giant Peep!!!

... appears to have taken lion kitty Maxx hostage. I shall be forced to liberate him later.

Cool Science News

Scientists have found an enormous crater in the Egyptian desert, the largest ever found there. Huge Crater Found in Egypt
The crater is about 19 miles (31 kilometers) wide, more than twice as big as the next largest Saharan crater known. It utterly dwarfs Meteor Crater in Arizona, which is about three-fourths of a mile (1.2 kilometers) in diameter.

In fact, the newfound crater, in Egypt, was likely carved by a space rock that was itself roughly 0.75 miles wide in an event that would have been quite a shock, destroying everything for hundreds of miles. For comparison, the Chicxulub crater left by a dinosaur-killing asteroid 65 million years ago is estimated to be 100 to 150 miles (160 to 240 kilometers) wide.

The crater was discovered in satellite images by Boston University researchers Farouk El-Baz and Eman Ghoneim.

The photo is a color enhanced satellite image.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

By request

A very, very sleepy lion kitty Maxx.

Something pretty

AFP/Jean-Pierre Muler

French flamingos. Because I need to see something beautiful at least once a day.


Via Jane at firedoglake, Murray Wass has an excellent article about pre-war intelligence and what bush was told: What Bush Was Told
Two highly classified intelligence reports delivered directly to President Bush before the Iraq war cast doubt on key public assertions made by the president, Vice President Cheney, and other administration officials as justifications for invading Iraq and toppling Saddam Hussein, according to records and knowledgeable sources.


The disclosure that Bush was informed of the DOE and State dissents is the first evidence that the president himself knew of the sharp debate within the government over the aluminum tubes during the time that he, Cheney, and other members of the Cabinet were citing the tubes as clear evidence of an Iraqi nuclear program. Neither the president nor the vice president told the public about the disagreement among the agencies.

They knew. They lied. End of story.

Impeach the bastard.


Chimpy's new budget guts funding to proposed scientific missions, in spite of new director Michael Griffin's vow that "not one thin dime" would come out of NASA's scientific budget to fund bush's "Mars Bitch!" inititiative. (One wonders what false promises the administration made to him when they got him to accept the job.) The NYTimes has the details: Budget Cuts Back Much- Promoted NASA Missions:
The cuts have alarmed and outraged many scientists, who have long feared that NASA will have to cannibalize its science program to carry out the president's vision of human spaceflight.

The new cuts, they say, will drive young people from the field, ending American domination of space science and perhaps ceding future discoveries to Europe.

"The bottom line: science at NASA is disappearing — fast," said Donald Lamb, an astrophysicist at the University of Chicago and chairman of a committee on space science for the Association of American Universities.


"We're getting ready to fire all the people we've built up," said Dr. Beichman, who is the project scientist for the second of the two spacecraft missions, once scheduled for about 2020. Once those scientists have found other jobs, he said, they are not likely to come back.

"What I feel bad about is turning away a generation," Dr. Beichman said, explaining that planet-finding has been one of the hottest fields in science lately, attracting, in particular, young scientists into astronomy.


Incidentally, the photo is an artist's rendition of an X-Ray sattelite called NuStar that is being cancelled after several years of development.

Republicans, penny wise, and fucking pound foolish.

Bombing in Pakistan

Syed Zargham/Getty Images

Take a look at Bush's legacy. A world where violence and radicalism is the norm.

Pining away....

Reuters/Jim Young

You know he's thinking, "I'd hit that."

I can't believe....

Reuters/Jason Reed

...that he thinks this is an appropriate venue to make bitter beer faces. It is so embarrassing that such an asshat is the president.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

War is cruel.....

....eeeeek!! and there are casualties.

Ronnie Earle on the hunt...

Via Josh at TalkingPointsMemo, Travis County DA Ronnie Earle is continuing to chase down Tom DeLay's ties to Jack Abramoff.
Today he subpoenaed Jack Abramoff's travel agent, the one who arranged the junket to Scotland in 2000. DeLay came along, and I think that it's fair to say from the $6,617.20 ticket price that he flew first class. The ticket was charged to Jack Abramoff's credit card.

Whoops! Those pesky little credit card statements get ya everytime.

NARAL Endorses Ciro

Via Jane at Firedoglake, NARAL is endorsing Ciro and donating $5,000 to his campaign.

Maybe they're finally getting the message. Please, if you can, go to Jane's ActBlue page and give Ciro's campaign a buck or two.

Redistricting Redux

The Supremes heard the Texas redistricting case today, and I have to say I'm not hopeful. Justices hear Texas redistricting arguments. Though it's hard to make predictions, it sounds like the justices were unmoved by arguments that the process was politically motivated. Listen to this passage:
"That's a surprise," Justice Antonin Scalia joked. "Legislatures redraw the map all the time for political reasons."

But Smith said lawmakers should not be able to get away with drawing oddly shaped districts that protect incumbent Republicans and deny voters their chance to vote for other candidates.

R. Ted Cruz, the Texas solicitor general, told justices that Republicans were only fixing a map that had been drawn to benefit Democrats, despite the fact that the state has more Republican voters.

That's a blatant lie. What ever happened to one man, one vote? The specific intent of this whole exercise was to either dilute or obliterate the votes of progressive and democratic voters in the state of texas. Period. The fact of the matter is that conservative democrats were getting elected in republican districts. And Tom Delay couldn't stand that.

So they came after Austin with a carving knife. The plan was to split up the voters of Travis County and stuff them into suburban, republican districts, effectively wiping them out. If that's not depriving me of my right to representation, I don't know what is.

What makes me angriest is that as a white, middle class manimal, I have no standing whatsoever to sue over this.

They cheat, they lie, they steal, they commit felonies. And they continually get away with it. And if the Roberts court doesn't rubber stamp this, I'll be astonished.

No!!!! You keep him....

AP Photo

...for the love of god, please don't send him back.

Separated at birth?

You decide.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Plush for auntie Sally

Lion kitty Maxx luvvvvvs his aunt Sally. And she's been good, so she gets her very own plush.

Bush has capital?

He's delusional. Despite polls, Bush says he has 'capital'

Ummm, sorry, but "living in the capital" and "having capital" are not the same thing.

Civil War Looms

Reuters/Nmir Noor-Eldeen

68 dead in Baghdad today. That we know of, anyway. Civil War Looms With 68 Killed in Baghdad
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Sunnis and Shiites traded bombings and mortar fire against mainly religious targets in Baghdad well into the night Tuesday, killing at least 68 people a day after authorities lifted a curfew that had briefly calmed a series of sectarian reprisal attacks.

At least six of Tuesday's attacks hit clearly religious targets, concluding with a car bombing after sundown at the Shiite Abdel Hadi Chalabi mosque in the Hurriyah neighborhood that killed 23 and wounded 55. A separate suicide bombing killed 23 people at an east Baghdad gas station, where people had lined up to buy kerosine.

Take a good look at the end product of the bush doctine. Can you imagine this happening in your neighborhood?

Bush had better hope that all that "saved" nonsense is actually true.

The Peep War continues

Mr. Plushy is grim, but resolute, in the face of the peeps relentless assault on his dignity.

Beautiful Photo of the Day

AFP/Jose Luis Roca

From the flamenco festival in Jerez, southern Spain.

Eeeeek! a sea monster!

Well, not really. Only a giant squid, but probably the largest specimen ever found is on display in London. This is one of the best headlines ever: Giant squid grabs London audience Via BBC News:
"One of the biggest and most complete giant squids ever found is on display at London's Natural History Museum.

Measuring a monstrous 8.62m (28ft), the squid was caught off the coast of the Falkland Islands by a trawler."

I feel a saturday sci-fi feature coming on.

baby plushies

Some baby plushies to keep you company while I work today.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Somewhere Tinkerbell is weeping.

Casualties in the sectarian violence in Iraq the past four days is three times what has been reported in the US press. Iraq's Deadly Surge Claims 1,300
Hundreds of unclaimed dead lay at the morgue at midday Monday -- blood-caked men who had been shot, knifed, garroted or apparently suffocated by the plastic bags still over their heads. Many of the bodies were sprawled with their hands still bound -- and many of them had wound up at the morgue after what their families said was their abduction by the Mahdi Army, the Shiite militia of cleric Moqtada al-Sadr.

The truth just didn't fit into Karl and chimpy's preferred narrative last week. Civil war? what civil war? nothing to see here, move right along.

When Tinkerbell gets through crying, I expect someone will finally notice that she's been dead for quite some time, and is, in fact, a reanimated zombie. Clapping won't change that.

Just relaxing...

...with his peeps.

"Quit putting stuff on me!!!!!"

Well, that explains it.

Bubonic Plague, or the black death, may have been responsible for Europe's "little ice age," the BBC reports today. Europe's chill linked to disease
Europe's "Little Ice Age" may have been triggered by the 14th Century Black Death plague, according to a new study.

Pollen and leaf data support the idea that millions of trees sprang up on abandoned farmland, soaking up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

This would have had the effect of cooling the climate, a team from Utrecht University, Netherlands, says.

The Little Ice Age was a period of some 300 years when Europe experienced a dip in average temperatures.

So there you have it. All the peasants died and trees sprang up on their untended farms, soaking up all the carbon-dioxide, cooling the earth.

So all we have to do is kill a gazillion peasants and plant a bunch of trees- global warming solved! Huzzah!

What Maxx is up to this instant

Ah, the life of a lion kitty.


Reuters/Caetano Barreira

Carnival in Salvador, how festive! I wish I were there.

Delay's allies try to sic the IRS on folks...

... to no avail. Texas Nonprofit Is Cleared After GOP-Prompted Audit. Basically, one of Delay's goons in the house instigated an IRS audit on a group critical of Tom Delay.

I guess using federal agencies to go after your critics is OKIYAR.

What a bunch of whiny-ass titty babies.

Palestinian Authority Near Collapse

In the "we'll get what we want one way or another file," the WAPO is reporting that Middle East Envoy Warns of Palestinian Authority Collapse.

Basically the US and Israel, by withholding aid and tax receipts, are doing their level best to undo a legitimate, democratic election. Which is exactly what they had in mind.

Nice work if you can get it

In spite of the fact that auditors questioned more than $250 million in charges as excessive or unjustified, the pentagon intends to pay nearly all of them. Army to Pay Halliburton Unit Most Costs Disputed by Audit"

The pentagon routinely withholds up to 60% of the amount recommended by auditors in these cases. This time they're only withhold 3%.

I guess it pays to have friends in high places.