America…Sold Down the River on Debt Deal

Thanks President Obama – for selling America down the river…

Again.

All bow down at the altar of conservative intransigence.

What next? You going to cave on bringing back slavery?

To Escape Chaos, a Terrible Deal

There is little to like about the tentative agreement between Congressional leaders and the White House except that it happened at all. The deal would avert a catastrophic government default, immediately and probably through the end of 2012. The rest of it is a nearly complete capitulation to the hostage-taking demands of Republican extremists. It will hurt programs for the middle class and poor, and hinder an economic recovery.

It is not yet set in stone, and there may still be time to make it better. But in the end, most Democrats will have no choice but to swallow their fury, accept the deal, and, we hope, fight harder the next time.

For weeks, ever since House Republicans said they would not raise the nation’s debt ceiling without huge spending cuts, Democrats have held out for a few basic principles. There must be new tax revenues in the mix so that the wealthy bear a share of the burden and Medicare cannot be affected.

Those principles were discarded to get a deal that cuts about $2.5 trillion from the deficit over a decade. The first $900 billion to a trillion will come directly from domestic discretionary programs (about a third of it from the Pentagon) and will include no new revenues. The next $1.5 trillion will be determined by a “supercommittee” of 12 lawmakers that could recommend revenues, but is unlikely to do so since half its members will be Republicans…

This for you, President Obama. Buy your own damn gold frame…

Official President Obama Yellowback Donkey Award

Moonshine…White Lightning… Legally Made

You probably will never see this in any account of the illegal whiskey making in the southeastern United States – but there were also plenty of black moonshiners making both “White Lightning” and Sour Mash whiskey in the back woods of both the hills…

And flatlands.

Problem with the legal stuff?

It just don’t taste right…no.

Distillery to make South Carolina’s first legal moonshine

The Whiskey that Made NASCAR

Two entrepreneurs are taking advantage of South Carolina’s new micro-distillery laws to make traditional moonshine whiskey legally in the state for the first time.

The Dark Corner Distillery will open next month in Greenville, where engineer Joe Fenten and longtime home beer brewer Richard Wenger will produce and sell small batches of 100-proof moonshine from a custom-made copper still.

The distillery, housed in a 1925 building, will also include a tasting bar and a museum dedicated to the history of the Dark Corner, the local mountains that were once full of moonshiners, feud and mayhem, Fenten, 27, told Reuters.

The area was settled, along with the nearby Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, by Scots, Irish and Welsh who migrated down through the Appalachian mountain chain from Pennsylvania in the 1700s.

“They thought it was their inalienable, God-given right to make whiskey,” said Fenten, a Dark Corner native. “It was a hard life. If you could make an extra 10 cents more for a gallon of whiskey than you could for a bushel of corn, then why not?”

Moonshine traditionally was the term used to describe illegally distilled corn whiskey often made covertly by the light of the moon. The product made at the new distillery will be un-aged corn whiskey, but will be taxed and regulated. Continue reading

St. Louis Erects Statue Honoring Chuck Berry

He Could Play a Guitar Like Ringing a Bell….

Hail! Hail! Chuck Berry

ASSOCIATED PRESS PHOTOGRAPHS "I don't know how to speak - I can sing a little bit," said Chuck Berry in remarks to a crowd gathered for the unveiling of a statue of himself at its dedication last Friday in University City, Mo., outside St. Louis.

Chuck Berry in his signature cap and tie.

The image is timeless Americana: Chuck Berry hunched over, ready to launch into his famous Duck Walk, picking his Gibson guitar and wailing a song.

It’s the image captured in the statue of the man considered by many to be the father of rock and roll, dedicated Friday in the University City Loop area of suburban St. Louis.

Mr. Berry, now 84, still performs monthly at Blueberry Hill, a club and restaurant across the street from the new statue. He spoke only briefly at the dedication ceremony on a sweltering day as hundreds paid tribute to the St. Louis native.

“I don’t know how to speak – I can sing a little bit,” Mr. Berry, wearing his signature captain’s hat and bolo tie, said after thanking people for braving the heat to come out. “I’m going to say thank you again, and I love you all.” Continue reading

More Bad News For Internet Explorer Users…

I have a live traffic feed on the right hand bar of my site, which shows me where my various visitors come from. I did a quick check earlier today, and about 50% of the folks visiting the site were using IE – the vast majority of which were suing 8.0 or 9.0…

But there were still a couple of Internet Explorer 6.0 users!

I don’t imagine AptiQuant, the company which did this study, will be doing any business with Microsoft anytime soon…

According to the company -

Those still running Internet Explorer 6 have an average IQ just above 80, while Firefox and Chrome users are up at around 110 and Opera and Camino users above 120.

Is Internet Explorer For The Dumb? A New Study Suggests Exactly That.

A Vancouver based Psychometric Consulting company, AptiQuant, has released a report on a trial it conducted to measure the effects of cognitive ability on the choice of web browser. AptiQuant offered free online IQ tests to over a 100,000 people and then plotted the average IQ scores based on the browser on which the test was taken. And the results are really not that surprising. With just a look at the graphs in the report, it comes out pretty clear that Internet Explorer users scored lower than average on the IQ tests. Chrome, Firefox and Safari users had just a teeny bit higher than average IQ scores. And users of Camino, Opera and IE with Chrome Frame had exceptionally higher IQ levels.

Internet Explorer has traditionally been considered a pain in the back for web developers. Any IT company involved in web development will acknowledge the fact that millions of man hours are wasted each year to make otherwise perfectly functional websites work in Internet Explorer, because of its lack of compatibility with web standards. The continuous use of older versions of IE by millions of people around the world has often haunted web developers. This trend not only makes their job tougher, but has also pulled back innovation by at least a decade. But with the results of this study, IT companies worldwide will start to take a new look on the time and money they spend on supporting older browsers. Continue reading

Them That’s Got… Jobs

<a href=”Ray Charles – Them That Got.mp3“>

I’ve gotten down to my last pair of shoes
Can’t even win a nickel bet
Because, ah them that’s got are them that gets
And I ain’t got nothin yet

I’m sneakin in and out duckin’ my landlord
All I seem to do is stay in debt
Because, ah them that’s got (yeah) are them that gets
And I tell you all I ain’t got nothin’ yet

That old sayin them that’s got are them that gets
Is somethin I can’t see
If ya gotta have somethin
Before you can get somethin
How do ya get your first is still a mystery to me

I see folk with long cars and fine clothes
That’s why they’re called the smarter set
Because they manage to get
When only them that’s got supposed to get
And I ain’t got nothin yet…

Another one of those things that makes you go….”Huh?” In an Americas with 6.5 million unemployed, and perhaps another 10 million underemployed or “discouraged”… The moron which came up with this one…

Needs to be fired.

Job listings say the unemployed need not apply

Hundreds of job opening listings posted on Monster.com and other jobs sites explicitly state that people who are unemployed would be less attractive applicants, with some telling the long-term unemployed to not even bother with applying.

The New York Times’ Catherine Rampell said she found preferences for the already employed or only recently laid off in listings for “hotel concierges, restaurant managers, teachers, I.T. specialists, business analysts, sales directors, account executives, orthopedics device salesmen, auditors and air-conditioning technicians.” Even the massive University of Phoenix stated that preference, but removed the listings when the Times started asking questions.

The concerted shunning of unemployed Americans by prospective employers was a common theme that cropped up in the thousands of responses that poured in when we asked Yahoo! readers to share their experiences of unemployment for our “Down But Not Out” series.

Reader Susan W. said she was being treated “as if it were my fault I was unemployed, regardless of the fact that I had put out hundreds of resumes and applications.”

Legal experts told the Times that explicitly barring unemployed people from applying does not qualify under the statutory definition of discrimination, since unemployment is not a federally protected status like age or race. But the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently set out to establish whether employers were discriminating against certain protected groups because they are overrepresented in the ranks of the unemployed, such as African-American and older workers. (We covered that meeting here.) New Jersey recently passed a law barring employment ads that seek to rule out applications from those who are unemployed.

Even if the practice of weeding out unemployed applicants doesn’t fit the legal definition of discrimination, it sure feels unfair for the more than 6.3 million Americans who have been out of work for more than six months to be told they are automatically disqualified for the few openings that are out there. “I feel like I am being shunned by our entire society,” Kelly Wiedemer, an unemployed information technology specialist, told the Times.

Cain Apologizes to Muslims

Not being surrounded by a bunch of white Tea Baggers out west – Herman tries to do the buckdance to moonwalk back on his vitriol…

Cain apologizes after meeting with Muslim leaders

 Republican Herman Cain is apologizing to Muslim leaders for vitriolic remarks he made about Islam while campaigning for the presidential nomination.

The former Godfather’s Pizza CEO has said communities have a right to ban Islamic mosques because Muslims are trying to inject sharia law into the U.S. He’s also said he would not want a Muslim bent on killing Americans in his administration.

On Wednesday, Cain met with four Muslim leaders in Sterling, Va. He said in a statement later he was “truly sorry” for comments that may have “betrayed” his commitment to the Constitution and the religious freedom it guarantees.

He also acknowledged that Muslims, “like all Americans,” have the right to practice freely their faith and that most Muslim Americans are peaceful and patriotic.

Rosa Parks Papers Reveal Rape Attempt

Rosa Parks was a prolific writer,  keeping copious notes on the events of the day, as well as her experiences. Historians reviewing her papers have come up with a few surprises…

Rosa Parks Auction

Rosa Parks essay reveals rape attempt

Long before Rosa Parks was hailed as the “mother of the civil rights movement,” she wrote a detailed and harrowing account of nearly being raped by a white neighbor who employed her as a housekeeper in 1931.

The six-page essay, written in her own hand many years after the incident, is among thousands of her personal items currently residing in the Manhattan warehouse and cramped offices of Guernsey’s Auctioneers, which has been selected by a Michigan court to find an institution to buy and preserve the complete archive.

The Associated Press was provided with some samples of the documents in the archive, including portions of the essay. Archivists had reviewed the documents for Guernsey’s and provided descriptions of their contents.

Civil rights historian Danielle McGuire said she had never before heard of the attempted rape of Parks and called the find among Parks’ papers astounding.

It helps explain what triggered Parks’ lifelong campaign against the ritualistic rape of black women by white men, said McGuire, whose recent book “At the Dark End of the Street” examines how economic intimidation and sexual violence were used to derail the freedom movement and how it went unpunished during the Jim Crow era.

“I thought it was because of the stories that she had heard. But this gives a much more personal context to that,” said McGuire, an assistant professor of history at Wayne State University in Detroit. Her book recounts Parks’ role in investigating for the NAACP the case of Recy Taylor, a young sharecropper raped by a group of white men in 1944.

Of her own experience, Parks wrote, “He offered me a drink of whiskey, which I promptly and vehemently refused. . He moved nearer to me and put his hand on my waist. I was very frightened by now.”

“He liked me. .. he didn’t want me to be lonely and would I be sweet to him. He had money to give me for accepting his attentions,” she wrote.

“I was ready to die but give my consent never. Never, never.”

Most people know the story of Parks, a black, middle-aged seamstress who refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a bus in Montgomery, Ala., in 1955. Guernsey’s President Arlan Ettinger said her personal papers reveal a much more complex individual, one who spent a lifetime fighting for racial equality and against the sexual violence of black women.

Parks is credited with inspiring the civil rights movement with her solitary act of defiance on Dec. 1, 1955, that led to the Supreme Court outlawing segregation on buses. She received the nation’s two highest honors in her lifetime, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal of Honor.

She died in 2005 at age 92, leaving the trove of personal correspondence, papers relating to her work for the Montgomery branch of the NAACP, tributes from presidents and world leaders, school books, family bibles, clothing, furniture and more – about 8,000 items in all.

“It is wonderful and breathtaking,” Ettinger said. “It will be up to the institution that ends up with it to make this material known to the world.” …

 

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