elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
So on Friday, a University of Rhode Island prof named Eric Loomis expressed his outrage over the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, by tweeting, "I was heartbroken in the first 20 mass murders. Now I want Wayne LaPierre’s head on a stick." (LaPierre is the head of the NRA.)

The right-wing punditry promptly shit concrete bricks... in spite of the fact that "head on a stick," like "heads will roll," has become a way of saying that there need to be consequences. A way that right-wing commentators use just as much as anyone else.

So someone then contacted the FBI and claimed that Loomis had threatened LaPierre's life, because that statement was so obviously a credible threat, and the RI State Police questioned Loomis, and then his dean hauled him into a meeting, and then, and then, the University of Rhode Island issued a statement:

The University of Rhode Island does not condone acts or threats of violence. These remarks do not reflect the views of the institution and Erik Loomis does not speak on behalf of the University. The University is committed to fostering a safe, inclusive and equitable culture that aspires to promote positive change.

So the best explication of just exactly why this whole thing is total bullshit comes from a post on a blog called Crooked Timber, which I'd never heard of before about half an hour ago:

Even to suggest that Loomis’s tweet constitutes a “threat of violence” is an offense against the English language. We are dismayed that the university president completely fails to acknowledge the importance of academic freedom and of scholars’ freedom independently to express views (even intemperate ones) on topics of public importance. This statement—unless it is swiftly corrected— should give alarm to scholars at the University of Rhode Island, to scholars who might one day consider associating themselves with this institution, and to academic and professional associations that value academic freedom.

Loomis doesn't have tenure. His livelihood has been jeopardized by this witch hunt.

This is not what academic freedom is supposed to be. I hope you'll consider signing on to the Crooked Timber statement. I have.
elbales: (Fantastically stupid!Ten)

I cannot stop laughing, y'all. I'm in pain. The first ten seconds of this literally had me doubled over and smacking my desk. COMEDY GOLD.
elbales: (Kidding!Nine)
What the hell? I'm gone from posting for a few lousy *checks* days and they wreck the UI! And the interface for replying is even worse. Where the hell are my tags?! Why is there no preview for my userpic or mood and no option to preview posts?! WTF?!

In conclusion: OH HALE NO.
elbales: (Hacked off!Nine)
EFF to San Francisco Entertainment Commission: Don’t Turn SF into a Police State

APRIL 11TH, 2011
News Update by Eva Galperin

The city of San Francisco has a long history of political activism and cultural diversity, which could be in danger if the San Francisco Entertainment Commission has their way. The Electronic Frontier Foundation joined civil liberties and privacy groups in criticizing a proposal from the San Francisco Entertainment Commission that would require all venues with an occupancy of over 100 people to record the faces of all patrons and employees and scan their ID’s for storage in a database which they must hand over to law enforcement on request. If adopted, these rules would pose a grave threat to the rights of freedom of association, due process, and privacy in San Francisco.

I've already shared this on my FB, but please echo it along. As I wrote there: RAAAAAAAAAAAAGE.

If you live in SF, and you are able, please consider attending the public hearing tomorrow, April 12, at 6:30 PM
in Room 400, City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, San Francisco.
elbales: (Can't be serious!Rimmer)
BP boss admits job on the line over Gulf oil spill

Tony Hayward, the beleaguered chief executive of BP, has claimed its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is "relatively tiny" compared with the "very big ocean".

In an bullish interview with the Guardian at BP's crisis centre in Houston, Hayward insisted that the leaked oil and the estimated 400,000 gallons of dispersant that BP has pumped into the sea to try to tackle the slick should be put in context.

"The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume," he said.


Shut up.

No, really. For the love of God, SHUT UP. Moron.

I won't be buying BP gas in the future. In fact, I think I'll write them a love letter to let them know that. I've been mulling it over since the spill; after all, Exxon and Chevron are worse in a lot of ways. (Valdez, anyone? How about that wonderful East Bay air?) But the way that BP is actively trying to weasel out of responsibility, and the way that they and Transocean are playing the blame game, has pretty much put it over the line.
elbales: (BAAL SMASH)
Court eases business, union election spending rule

By MARK SHERMAN, Associated Press Writer

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Supreme Court threw out a 63-year-old law designed to restrain the influence of big business and unions on elections Thursday, ruling that corporations may spend as freely as they like to support or oppose candidates for president and Congress. The decision could drastically alter who gives and gets hundreds of millions of dollars in this year's crucial midterm elections.

By a 5-4 vote, the court overturned two of its own decisions as well as the decades-old law that said companies and labor unions can be prohibited from using money from their general treasuries to produce and run their own campaign ads. The decision threatens similar limits imposed by 24 states.

As I just wrote in my Facebook, WHAT. WHAT. WHAT THE EVER-LIVING SHIT.

Congratulations, five conservative justices. You just gave nonliving entities which have huge checking accounts and which also already have a disproportionate influence on the governance of this country... even MORE influence. You just handed the Congress to the likes of AIG and Exxon/Mobil. I hope you're fucking proud of yourselves, you smug pieces of shit.

I wish I could go back in time to slap silly the moronic judges who declared that corporations should have the same rights as individuals.

ETA: And in fact, I am so furious about this that I left a comment at the White House website. No, Obama can't and shouldn't interfere with SCOTUS, but I had to register my opinion somewhere, and where better than at the top?
elbales: (BAAL SMASH)
Disturbing, possibly triggery image, behind the cut )

This is beyond words. This needs to be all over the media. There is absolutely no excuse for this kind of revolting, disgusting behavior.
elbales: (Shut up already.)
The embedding tool for this CNN news video doesn't work (oh yay, Turner Broadcasting, WHATEVER), but the upshot is that the minister of a Baptist church in Arizona says right on camera that he prays for Obama to get brain cancer and die.

Quality human, oh yeah.

Even better? The dude who showed up at the Obama town hall later that weekend in Phoenix, toting an assault rifle? Was in Crazy Minister's church during that service.

In Bush's day, you couldn't even wear a freakin' t-shirt that said BUSH SUCKS or IRAQ: GTFO or DEAR GOD, IF YOU WERE TO TAKE GEORGE W. BUSH, LIKE, TOMORROW I WOULD NOT EVEN CRY, SRSLY, or large goons would come and make your ass vanish in the dead of night and next thing anyone knows, you're calling collect from, like, Belgrade or some shit. But Obama's the evil one?



ETA: Forgot to say, ganked from [livejournal.com profile] wendymr.
elbales: (Bitch PLZ!Romana)
Ikea is owned by a "charitable foundation," pays only 3.5% tax


Ikea's corporate structure is insanely complicated. It is technically owned by a Dutch charitable nonprofit -- a strategy that allows the group to pay 3.5% tax on annual profits of €553m. However, the charity itself appears to do almost no charitable giving. Most of the money disappears into generic line-items like "other operating charges" which it refuses to explain.

I mean, really. You make money off the labor and ideas of your workers, who get educated for free and get health care for free, and it's all paid for by... taxes. Which you're not paying? WTF.

Yeah, I know businesses (well, all the people who can afford fancy accountants) all try to get out of paying taxes as much as they possibly can. But you know? I don't have to give people like that my money.
elbales: (Can't be serious!Rimmer)
Pilots' low pay, long commutes probed in air crash

By JOAN LOWY, Associated Press Writer
Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The co-pilot in an airline crash that killed 50 people in upstate New York was paid a salary so low that she lived with her parents near Seattle and commuted across the country to her job, a combination of long travel and little money that a safety official called a "recipe for an accident."

The article is dismaying, but I didn't really get pissed off until I read this:

Daniel Morgan, Colgan's vice president for flight safety, said the airline industry has a long history of flight crews commuting long distances to report for work.

Morgan said it is appropriate that the airline sometimes schedule pilots to be on duty up to 16 hours at a stretch with a maximum of eight hours of flight time.

"It's not an ideal way to work, but neither is working overnight in the post office," Morgan said.

Yeah? Well, you know, if some overtired post office clerk routes my mail to Peoria, nobody dies, MORON.

elbales: (Bitch PLZ!Romana)
ESL Teacher Fired -- Holy S***

An ESL teacher from San Anselmo was dismissed after translating obscene language, according to the Marin Independent Journal. The saga all started when Tamalpais Adult School students asked Jack Liberman for a lesson on words that might not go over well after, say, missing a putt on the 15th green.

German student Brigitte Brockmann told the Journal:

Whenever I am playing golf, if I make a bad shot I always would yell 'sh--!'" Jack had to tell me that I can't say 'sh--,' that I have to say 'shoot' instead.

And for this they fired him? Jesus. I've taught a lesson like that myself. Shame on TAS for not backing their teacher.
elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
From La Vida Locavore via an e-mail message from TrueMajority

Organic White House Garden Puts Some Conventional Panties in a Twist
by: Jill Richardson
Sat Mar 28, 2009 at 12:47:36 PM PDT

In the aftermath of breaking ground on the new, 1100 square foot White House garden, Michelle Obama named chef Sam Kass to head the White House Food Initiative. And we know how Kass feels about food... he agrees with us!

All of this positive PR for organics feels very threatening to Big Ag. So one group, the Mid America CropLife Association, has sent an email defending chemical ag to Mrs. Obama. See the letter reprinted below.

After sending the letter, MACA forwarded it around to others, with the following message:

Did you hear the news? The White House is planning to have an "organic" garden on the grounds to provide fresh fruits and vegetables for the Obama's and their guests. While a garden is a great idea, the thought of it being organic made Janet Braun, CropLife Ambassador Coordinator and I shudder. As a result, we sent a letter encouraging them to consider using crop protection products and to recognize the importance of agriculture to the entire U.S. economy.

You have got to be kidding me. The agricultural chemical companies have served their purpose. At this point they're just trying desperately to perpetuate a way of life that needs to die. Strong words, but sheesh.
elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
Every Year Capital One Reopens My Account And XBOX Live Debits Money

Every year Erick gets a Christmas present from Capital One. They reopen the credit card he closed 4 or 5 years ago. At that point, Microsoft gets into the act and starts billing that account for XBOX Live service he canceled at about the same time.


Gah. I'd have been demanding to talk with the CEO of Capital One the second time this happened. Glad the guy's finally involved an AG's office. There really is no limit to the incompetence of most credit card companies, is there?
elbales: (Kidding!Nine)
WTF, people? No, seriously, WTF?

Wal-Mart worker dies after shoppers knock him down
By COLLEEN LONG, Associated Press Writer
Friday, November 28, 2008

A Wal-Mart worker was killed Friday after an "out of control" throng of shoppers eager for post-Thanksgiving bargains broke down the doors at a suburban store and knocked him to the ground, police said.

At least four other people, including a woman eight months pregnant, were taken to hospitals for observation or minor injuries, and the store in Valley Stream on Long Island closed for several hours before reopening.

Nassau police said about 2,000 people were gathered outside the store doors at the mall about 20 miles east of Manhattan. The impatient crowd knocked the man to the ground as he opened the doors, leaving a metal portion of the frame crumpled like an accordion.

The worst part?

Kimberly Cribbs, who witnessed the stampede, said shoppers were acting like "savages."

"When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling 'I've been on line since yesterday morning,'" she said. "They kept shopping."

JESUS CHRIST. A man is dead and people are screaming about being on line? Get a grip. I really hope they're able to identify some of the people responsible from the surveillance tapes, because the people responsible for this kind of behavior need to be held accountable, where by "held accountable" I mean "thrown in jail to contemplate life for a while." I mean, I know about mobs, okay? But this is disgusting.

I really feel sorry for the poor man's family.
elbales: (Kidding!Nine)
No, seriously. You can hear it come out of her own mouth.

You have got to be kidding me. No, seriously, YOU HAVE GOT TO BE FREAKING KIDDING ME.

My brain is running around in circles looking for the glass box marked IN CASE OF BREATHTAKINGLY CRETINOUS COMMENTS, BREAK HERE.

Lady? I can help you with that. OF COURSE THEY'RE TERRORISTS, YOU MORON. Now sit down and shut up.
elbales: (F'ing weird!Nine)

PETA Urges Ben & Jerry's To Use Human Milk
Group Says Move Would Help Humans, Cows

WATERBURY, Vt. -- People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent a letter to Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, cofounders of Ben & Jerry's Homemade Inc., urging them to replace cow's milk they use in their ice cream products with human breast milk, according to a statement recently released by a PETA spokeswoman.

"PETA's request comes in the wake of news reports that a Swiss restaurant owner will begin purchasing breast milk from nursing mothers and substituting breast milk for 75 percent of the cow's milk in the food he serves," the statement says.

PETA officials say a move to human breast milk would lessen the suffering of dairy cows and their babies on factory farms and benefit human health.

I swear I am not making this up.

elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)

Yeah. Four more years of that? Where do I sign up? Not.

*goes and makes a contribution to the Obama campaign*
elbales: (Bitch please - BSG)
What? Whaaaaaat?

Court: U.S. can bar mad-cow testing

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal appeals court says the government can prohibit meat packers from testing their animals for mad cow disease.

Because the Agriculture Department tests only a small percentage of cows for the deadly disease, Kansas meatpacker Creekstone Farms Premium Beef wants to test all of its cows. The government says it can't.

Larger meat companies worry that if Creekstone is allowed to perform the test and advertise its meat as safe, they could be forced to do the expensive test, too.

elbales: (Facepalm - Holy Grail)

No, seriously, what?

Ganked from [livejournal.com profile] cleolinda's latest linkspam post.


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