When Liberals were still liberal

This speech by Ted Kennedy is one of the last by a major Democratic figure before the party, scared out of its values by Reagan, adopted a neo-liberalism that bails out banks but not the foreclosed, helps big auto makers but not small business, and pushes a privatized health plan that heavily subsidizes the insurance industry....



Aha! So that's it!

Those little buttons on the inside of the shirt tail are there so the laundry can have some buttons to break without having to break the buttons on the front of the shirt. Pretty clever, that.

I've been taking some of my shirts to a laundry to get them, you know, like pressed. It's been years - a dozen or so - since the last time I did that. I lost my iron, OK? Maybe I ought to by another one of these days.

We're Number 28!

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States ranks 28th in the world in average Internet connection speed and is not making significant progress in building a faster network, according to a report released on Tuesday.

link: US ranks 28th in Internet connection speed: report by AFP: Yahoo! Tech

And all in the interest of good government, Bunky, you bet

WASHINGTON — As the Obama administration and Democrats wrangled over the timing, shape and cost of health care overhaul efforts during the first half of the year, more than half the $1.1 million in campaign contributions the Democratic Party's Blue Dog Coalition received came from the pharmaceutical, health care and health insurance industries, according to watchdog organizations.

link: Health care industry contributes heavily to Blue Dogs | McClatchy


Photo:Phil Compton

YA dumb idea

Occidental College’s Stupidity 108 course will train freshmen to navigate the tortured intricacies of stupidity. Upon completion - providing they can understand the course description - they’ll be qualified to recognize and deal with boneheaded bosses, congressional crapweasels, and asshats who park their shopping carts in the middle of grocery store aisles while they read the nutritional information on boxes of salt.

link: Throw off the Yoke of the Intelligencia, Become a Neo-Stupe Today | The Omnipotent Poobah Speaks!


Don't look now, but your mom's found out

Almost everyone under 35 uses social networks, but the growth of these networks over the last year has come from older adults, according to a report from Forrester Research issued Tuesday. Use of social networking by people aged 35 to 54 grew 60 percent in the last year.

link: Who’s Driving Twitter’s Popularity? Not Teenagers - NYTimes.com


Who dreams this stuff up?

A CIA inspector general report released Monday in a less-redacted version reveals that “prolonged diapering” was on the agency’s list of approved “enhanced” interrogation techniques.

link: Raw Story » ‘Prolonged diapering’ revealed as ‘enhanced interrogation technique’

I have no idea what statist idolatry is but it does sound scary, doesn't it?

Right-wing commentators are claiming that the White House is planning to “erase the meaning” of the 9/11 attacks and turn the anniversary into “a day of leftist celebration and statist idolatry”

link: Raw Story » Right-wingers cry socialism over 9/11 anniversary plan backed by many in GOP

Questions, questions

As it turns out John Yoo is not terribly popular at Berkely. Forget about questions of academic freedom, says Scott Horton: “If the Justice Department formed the conclusion that Yoo’s work on constitutional and international law issues was shockingly substandard-indeed incompetent-why should he be teaching those exact subjects at Boalt Hall?”

link: Pruning back the power of the executive branch - Pruning Shears - This Week In Tyranny

File under Living Dangerously

NEW YORK – Jessica Biel is the most dangerous celebrity on the Web.

Security technology company McAfee Inc. on Tuesday reported that searches for the 27-year-old actress are more likely to lead to online threats such as spyware and viruses than searches for any other celebrity.

link: Jessica Biel named `most dangerous celebrity' - Yahoo! News

Don't worry, Bunky, it won't hurt for long

A spokesman for America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s trade group, admitted in an article published Monday that as many as 50,000 industry employees are involved in an effort to fight back against aggressive healthcare reform.

The admission, published in the last sentence of a Wall Street Journal article, highlights the stakes of potential healthcare reform for the private health insurance industry. Insurers and investors alike are terrified at the prospect of a so-called “public option,” which would create a government-run health insurance program to compete with private insurers. Because the government plan wouldn’t have to earn a profit, the plan would be able to undercut the premiums of private firms, pressuring profit margins.

link: Raw Story » Insurers admit 50,000 employees lobbying Congress to claim profits fair


Shallow Bay, Sucia Island State Park

Photo: Lynn C.

No, I have no idea what this is about

IMG_0195, originally uploaded by tedcompton.

The Romney plan

Massachusetts has the most expensive family health insurance premiums in the country, according to a new analysis that highlights the state’s challenge in trying to rein in medical costs after passage of a landmark 2006 law that mandated coverage for nearly everyone.

The report by the Commonwealth Fund, a nonprofit health care foundation, showed that the average family premium for plans offered by employers in Massachusetts was $13,788 in 2008, 40 percent higher than in 2003. Over the same period, premiums nationwide rose an average of 33 percent.

link: Bay State health insurance premiums highest in country - The Boston Globe

When they try to tell you this mandated health insurance thing is about cost containment, they lie.

Sleep on it

New research by Ap Dijksterhuis and his colleagues at the University of Amsterdam suggests that we would be better off thinking about the simple choices, and leaving the life-changing decisions to our unconscious mind.

link: Johnjoe McFadden: The conscious mind isn't much use in making hard decisions | Comment is free | The Guardian