I bought some at the grocery store this morning. Oh yeah, dude, it's either the first sign of senility - or, OK, second* - or it's my trendsetter gene kicking in again. I mean, people are buying SPAM again so why not Fluff?

Although Fluff enjoys wide distribution in the United States, there are still a few places where we are not located. If you happen to live in such a place, or cannot find Fluff locally, it may be ordered directly from our factory using the Order Form located in this site.

[From History of Marshmallow Fluff - Part Three]

Come to think of it, why not Fluff and SPAM sandwiches? Flammers! Whoa.

*Don't ask me what the first was. I forgot.

Jump right in any time, Howie, any time

“The wounds of sexism need to be the subject of a national discussion,” the chairman, Howard Dean, said in an interview. “Many of the most prominent people on TV behaved like middle schoolers” toward Mrs. Clinton....

[From Clinton Bloc Becomes the Prize for Election Day - NYTimes.com]

Yes, bunky, the Indians are catching up with us

LUCKNOW, India (AP) -- He's a revered Hindu monkey god. And now, he's the chairman of an Indian business school.

[From Indian school names monkey god chairman - CNN.com]

Unemployment up because more people want jobs, says Bush

During an economic speech today, President Bush partly blamed a dramatic rise in unemployment on new workers entering the workforce. Later, in a CNN interview, Bush Labor Secretary Elaine Chao also said that the increase the unemployment rate was "caused in part by a surge of young entrants into the job market."

[From The Raw Story | CNN reporter: Bush excuse for unemployment rate 'ridiculous']

226 days to go.

And you thought the baby boom had something to do with WWII

On this day 75 years ago, the first drive-in theater opened in Camden, N.J....

[From The Drive-In Movie Turns 75 - Wheels - Autos - New York Times Blog]

A little bit unclear on the concept

ARYADA, Colorado (AP) -- Police in a Colorado town say they've caught two "thong bandits" who used women's underwear to disguise themselves during a convenience store robbery....

One man wore a green thong and the other wore blue. Each thong barely covered the man's nose, mouth and chin and left the rest of his face exposed.

[From 'Thong bandits' surrender to police - CNN.com]


Oh someone is, Dick

Clarke stated unequivocally that figures in the administration lied then and that Senator John McCain is not telling the truth now when he defends them. "Someone should have to pay in some way," Clarke emphasized.

[From The Raw Story | Former anti-terror czar: 'Someone should have to pay' for Bush administration lies]

A whole lot of someones. In fact, damn near every someone is paying except the very freakin' someones who did the lying in the first place. In a lot of ways.

So let's be a little more specific, huh, Dick? Those are the someones who should pay. And the very first someone on the list should be the First Someone himself.

And the name-change department is closed for the weekend, ha ha

“Nuclear war will begin next Thursday, June 12, or sooner, according to the latest prediction of self-proclaimed prophet Yisrayl ‘Buffalo Bill’ Hawkins, the founder of a religious sect in Abilene, Texas.”...

Like many of the his followers, Als actually legally changed his last name to Hawkins because he became convinced that only those named Hawkins would be saved.

[From Raw Replay - Revisiting History]


Gobo, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

It's gotta be a bad day...

...when you climb a New York skyscraper only to find out somebody else did it just a couple of hours earlier.

Two men, one a practiced French stuntman known for climbing tall buildings, the other a New Yorker who said he wanted to raise awareness of the dangers of malaria, scaled the 52-story New York Times Building in Times Square on Thursday just hours apart. Each was arrested when he stepped safely onto the roof.

[From 2 men scale New York Times building hours apart - International Herald Tribune]

Piling on

WESTLAKE, Ohio (AP) -- A Cleveland-area principal says he's embarrassed his students got proof of their "educaiton" on their high school diplomas.

[From Can you spell 'education?' This school can't ... - CNN.com]

The sixth of June

June 6, 1944, paratroopers from the 82nd and 101st Divisions dropped into the Cherbourg peninsula of France in the vanguard of massive Allied landings on the beaches of Normandy. Each trooper carried some 70 pounds of equipment including these...

Emergency rations

4 pieces of chewing gum

2 bouillon cubes

2 Nescafe instant coffees, 2 sugar cubes, and creamers

4 Hershey bars

1 pack of Charms candy

1 package pipe tobacco

1 bottle of water purification (Halazone) tablets to purify water. "To use: Put two tablets in canteen full of water (approx. 1 qt.) and shake briskly. Wait 30 minutes before drinking water. If water is dirty or discolored, use 4 tablets."

[From American Experience | D-Day | Paratroopers]

From NPR's description of the airborne assault:

The 101st Division suffered great losses. Only one sixth of the men reached their destination points. The first regiment of the 82nd Division fared better, but the second suffered heavy supply losses -- much of the division was left without sufficient arms. Still, both divisions managed to form smaller improvised squads, and organized themselves to wage a fight. By 0430, the 82nd had captured the town of Ste-Mere-Eglise.


Don't get us started here

From some guy whose initials are Spiiderweb™, this link:

[From » giant-duck - My Confined Space ]

Woohoo! Like that? Then take a quack at this.

Take a long, deep breath

The fantastical prospect of interacting with Steve Ballmer over a golf match is indeed titillating.

[From CJR: Futurama]

Feel better now?

Movie-plot threats

Since 9/11, there has been an increasing war on photography. Photographers have been harrassed, questioned, detained, arrested or worse, and declared to be unwelcome. We've been repeatedly told to watch out for photographers, especially suspicious ones. Clearly any terrorist is going to first photograph his target, so vigilance is required.

Except that it's nonsense. The 9/11 terrorists didn't photograph anything. Nor did the London transport bombers, the Madrid subway bombers, or the liquid bombers arrested in 2006. Timothy McVeigh didn't photograph the Oklahoma City Federal Building. The Unabomber didn't photograph anything; neither did shoe-bomber Richard Reid. Photographs aren't being found amongst the papers of Palestinian suicide bombers. The IRA wasn't known for its photography. Even those manufactured terrorist plots that the US government likes to talk about -- the Ft. Dix terrorists, the JFK airport bombers, the Miami 7, the Lackawanna 6 -- no photography.

Given that real terrorists, and even wannabe terrorists, don't seem to photograph anything, why is it such pervasive conventional wisdom that terrorists photograph their targets? Why are our fears so great that we have no choice but to be suspicious of any photographer?

[From Schneier on Security: The War on Photography]

Spare us the smoke and mirrors, please

NEW YORK (AP) — In his first order of business as his party's presumed presidential nominee, Barack Obama is instructing the Democratic National Committee to adopt his policy against accepting donations from federal lobbyists or political action committees.

[From The Associated Press: DNC will no longer take lobbyist, PAC money]

Fine. But according to OpenSecrets.org, a web organization that tracks campaign spending, PAC money typically accounts for 1% of Presidential campaign funding. And federal lobbyists, evil though they may be, are still individual donors, just like streetcar conductors and hot dog vendors. And subject to the same limitations.

Meanwhile Obama has spent so far in this election cycle $218 million - according again to OpenSecrets.org - to Clinton's $185 million and McCain's $73 million.

McCain, meanwhile, is the only candidate of the three who is using public funding. Granted, by all reports he's cheating like crazy. But still, he is. And I'm for public funding. Candidates who turn down public funding generally do so because it limits how much they can spend and imposes reporting requirements.

So I'm not particularly impressed by Obama's (and the Democrats') little stab at virtue here.

If Obama really wants to do something useful he can start by dropping by Hullabaloo and reading dday's post on the subject:

I congratulate Barack Obama on his primary win and think he has the opportunity to bring forward meaningful change in America. In fact, he can start today. He can go to the well of the Senate and demand that the party he now leads not authorize new powers to spy on Americans and immunize corporations who broke the law with their illegal spying in the first place.

[From Hullabaloo]

Whaddya wanna bet?

Up the New York Times

A man holding a bright green banner has ascended the north face of The New York Times's building, climbing about 10 stories while the police and security officials cordoned off the sidewalk on West 41st Street.

[From "French Spiderman" Alain Robert Climbs NYT Building With Global Warming Banner - Green on The Huffington Post]

Elections blogger Brad Friedman reports on voting in LA

The ES&S electronic voting system that I used to try to vote on yesterday, ended up flipping a total of 4 out of the 12 contests and initiatives for which I had attempted to vote.

Right before my very eyes, the computer-printed ballot produced by the voting system I was using, incorrectly filled in bubbles for four of the races I was voting in. Had I not been incredibly careful, after the ballot was printed out, to painstakingly compare what was printed to what I actually voted for, I'd have never known my votes were being given to candidates I did not vote for.

[From The BRAD BLOG : My Own Votes, Four of Them, Were Flipped Yesterday Before My Very Eyes]

OK, so maybe a rose is not a rose after all

From a long and highly readworthy post at Spiiderweb™, this gem:

Another contract noticed last week previews the opening, apparently in September, of a U.S.-run prison, now labeled a Theater Internment Facility Reconciliation Center...

[From Spiiderweb™: Bush has plans to turn Iraq over to the corporations and their mercenary armies]

It's the river that makes the difference

Warehouse manager to sales guy: Dude, I've dated girls that are more of a man than you are!

Receptionist to warehouse manager: Yeah, but you're from Jersey.

[From Overheard in the Office | The Voice of the Cubicle]


And you thought nothing from Microsoft was ever free

Ballmer: you can buy Vista and downgrade to XP for free

[From AppleInsider | Ballmer: you can buy Vista and downgrade to XP for free]

Oh, well then, no big deal

WELLFLEET, Massachusetts (AP) -- Local historians for decades thought the 30-foot tall lighthouse that once overlooked Wellfleet Harbor had been taken down and destroyed in 1925.

Turns out it had just been moved to the California coast.

[From Lighthouse, presumed destroyed, found on opposite coast - CNN.com]

It ain't easy being a fashion trendsetter

WASHINGTON - A little strategically placed makeup quickly turns the wimpiest of male barn swallows into chick magnets, amping up their testosterone and even trimming their weight, new research shows....

Using a $5.99 marker, scientists darkened the rust-colored breast feathers of male New Jersey barn swallows, turning lighter birds to the level of those naturally darkest.

[From Marked-up birds become sexier, exude testosterone - Yahoo! News]

Tree nuts

I don't know what tree nuts are, exactly, but there might be some in the chocolate bar I bought with my stimulation check. Also, I paid for another year of car insurance. So thanks, Feds! Was it good for you too?

Sure, but what do you bet?

I congratulate Barack Obama on his primary win and think he has the opportunity to bring forward meaningful change in America. In fact, he can start today. He can go to the well of the Senate and demand that the party he now leads not authorize new powers to spy on Americans and immunize corporations who broke the law with their illegal spying in the first place.

[From Hullabaloo]

Spare us, please

A private San Francisco area university dedicated to the study of the cannabis industry is giving a whole new meaning to higher education.

[From The Raw Story | Marijuana university offers 'higher' education]


Yeah, go home, kid - we don't need no smart guys here

We're into stoopid.

Arthur Mkoyan's 4.0 grade-point average has made him a valedictorian at Bullard High School in Fresno and qualified him to enter one of the state's top universities.

But while his classmates look forward to dorm food and college courses this fall, Arthur Mkoyan may not make it.

He is being deported....

The family fled from the old Soviet Union and has been seeking asylum since 1992. The appeals ran out this year.

[From FresnoBee.com: Local: Bullard High valedictorian to be deported]


Oh yes I am

Oh yes I am, originally uploaded by tedcompton.


“We encourage people to enjoy chocolate as part of a balanced diet,” a [Mars Inc.] spokesperson said.

[From Chocolate, Part of a Balanced Diet? - The Lede - Breaking News - New York Times Blog]

Go spokesperson!

Ideas don't come much dumber than this

The former First Lady would get the chance to pilot Mr Obama’s reforms of the American healthcare system if she agrees to clear the path to his nomination as Democratic presidential candidate.

Senior figures in the Obama camp have told Democrat colleagues that the offer to Mrs Clinton of a cabinet post as health secretary or to steer new legislation through the Senate will be a central element of their peace overtures to the New York senator.

[From US Elections: Hillary Clinton to be offered dignified exit - Telegraph]

I don't have any way of knowing if this is true. I really hope it's not. Because for Obama to put Clinton forward as his healthcare maven would be to make her the poster girl for her own signature failure, and one the Rs and the big healthcare interests have already spent millions of dollars deriding to boot. And how awesomely stupid is that?


Ah, Chicago: Where it's all right there

It's hard to miss Barbara O'Connor's face on a drive through North Side neighborhoods, where her real estate signs beckon buyers to "find your way home."

In the last decade she has built a thriving business selling houses and condos, many of which couldn't have been built without zoning changes the developers sought from the 40th Ward alderman—her husband, Patrick O'Connor....

Patrick O'Connor said his wife's success has nothing to do with developers' dependence on his approval.

[From He zones. She sells. And it's legal. -- Wages and Pensions, Patrick O'Connor -- chicagotribune.com]

When you run, you run

What worries me is this: Can we expect a President Obama to cave in to the whims and will of the right on policies and issues he knows are important, if this nation is to move forward in a progressive and compassionate manner? Can we expect him to genuflect to negative reports by an uninformed, misinformed or ill-willed media? Is the candidate of change willing to go-along in a willy-nilly get-along fashion?

[From Monroe Anderson]

Today on the wall

Today on the wall, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

The company we keep

LONDON: The draft of a treaty to ban cluster munitions was adopted by a group of 111 nations on Wednesday in Dublin after Britain dropped its longstanding opposition to any limitations on the weapons....

The draft treaty would still leave most of the world's stockpile of cluster weapons untouched, as the United States has been joined in its outright opposition to the ban, and in its boycott of the Dublin conference, by a group of military powers that includes China, Russia, Israel, India, Pakistan and Brazil.

[From Britain joins a draft treaty to ban cluster munitions - International Herald Tribune]

Life is full of surprises

MIAMI — The federal government is showering households with tax rebates to spur spending and invigorate a troubled economy. But many Americans are so consumed with debt and the soaring price of gasoline that they are opting to save the money or use it to pay bills, according to surveys, sales data and interviews with people from Florida to California.

[From Consumers Lean on Rebate Checks for Bills and Gas - NYTimes.com]