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Archive for January 1st, 2011

FP: Next Year’s Wars

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:49 am by HL

FP: Next Year’s Wars
Across the globe today, there are almost three dozen raging conflicts, from the valleys of Afghanistan to the jungles of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the streets of Kashmir. But what are the next crises that might erupt in 2011? Foreign Policy lists its top 10, including Colombia, Mexico and Iraq.



Late Late Night FDL: Auld Lang Swine

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:48 am by HL

Late Late Night FDL: Auld Lang Swine
The MuppetsAuld Lang Swine/For She’s A Jolly Good Porker, from episode 502 of The Muppet Show.

The MuppetsAuld Lang Swine/For She’s A Jolly Good Porker, from episode 502 of The Muppet Show.

Hippo Gnu Year everyone!  What’s on your mind?


War Is Toxic

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:47 am by HL

War Is Toxic
A new study has concluded that a rise in genetic damage in children born in Fallujah, Iraq, could have been caused by the weaponry used in the U.S. assault on the city six years ago. Researchers also discovered that the rate of malformations was almost 11 times higher than normal and continued to rise in the first half of 2010. —JCL The Guardian: A study examining the causes of a dramatic spike in birth defects in the Iraqi city of Falluja has for the first time concluded that genetic damage could have been caused by weaponry used in US assaults that took place six years ago. The research, which will be published next week, confirms earlier estimates revealed by the Guardian of a major, unexplained rise in cancers and chronic neural-tube, cardiac and skeletal defects in newborns. The authors found that malformations are close to 11 times higher than normal rates, and rose to unprecedented levels in the first half of this year – a period that had not been surveyed in earlier reports. The findings, which will be published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, come prior to a much-anticipated World Health Organisation study of Falluja’s genetic health. They follow two alarming earlier studies, one of which found a distortion in the sex ratio of newborns since the invasion of Iraq in 2003 – a 15% drop in births of boys. Read more

A new study has concluded that a rise in genetic damage in children born in Fallujah, Iraq, could have been caused by the weaponry used in the U.S. assault on the city six years ago.

Researchers also discovered that the rate of malformations was almost 11 times higher than normal and continued to rise in the first half of 2010. —JCL

The Guardian:

A study examining the causes of a dramatic spike in birth defects in the Iraqi city of Falluja has for the first time concluded that genetic damage could have been caused by weaponry used in US assaults that took place six years ago.

The research, which will be published next week, confirms earlier estimates revealed by the Guardian of a major, unexplained rise in cancers and chronic neural-tube, cardiac and skeletal defects in newborns. The authors found that malformations are close to 11 times higher than normal rates, and rose to unprecedented levels in the first half of this year – a period that had not been surveyed in earlier reports.

The findings, which will be published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, come prior to a much-anticipated World Health Organisation study of Falluja’s genetic health. They follow two alarming earlier studies, one of which found a distortion in the sex ratio of newborns since the invasion of Iraq in 2003 – a 15% drop in births of boys.

Read more

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Joe Peyronnin: A Toast to America 2011

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:46 am by HL

Joe Peyronnin: A Toast to America 2011
America has overcome adversity many times before in its history. It has always done so because the nation is strong and its people are resilient. That is true as well today.

AlaskaDispatch.com: Joe Miller Gives Alaskans The Gift Of A New Year
Alaska’s Joe Miller has given up his legal fight to wrest a U.S. Senate seat away from incumbent Lisa Murkowski, but promised local supporters and…

Dave Winer: America’s Tienanmen and Blogger of the Year 2010
WikiLeaks is America’s Tienanmen. Julian Assange is the tank guy. We all hold our breath to see if we go all the way.

Scott Brown Named Bostonian Of The Year By The Globe
Yet in the art of retail politics, the agreeable guy with the handsome face was a star, quickly establishing himself as the superior candidate. It…


Megyn Kelly: Calling Aliens ‘Undocumented’ Like Calling Rape ‘Non-Consensual Sex’ (VIDEO)

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:45 am by HL

Megyn Kelly: Calling Aliens ‘Undocumented’ Like Calling Rape ‘Non-Consensual Sex’ (VIDEO)
Plenty of conservatives are pretty upset over a campaign by a journalism organization to convince reporters to stop using the terms “illegal aliens” and “illegal immigrants” in favor of “undocumented immigrant.” But none are as livid as perpetually outraged Fox News host Megyn Kelly, who on Wednesday afternoon asked if journalists were going to start calling rapists “non-consensual sex partners” next.

Police: Fox News Flubbed ‘Granny Terrorist’ Story
Law enforcement officials says Fox News’ report of a probe into a Indiana grandmother for alleged terrorist ties was taken out of context and that the reporter based her report of an investigation off her own tip.

Pamela Geller Celebrates The Year Of The ‘Ground Zero Mosque’
Pam Geller, everyone’s favorite bikini-clad Islamophobe, is celebrating the power her demagoguery has to grab headlines upon the news that the debate over the “Ground Zero Mosque” was the most followed issue this year.


Today’s Quotes: The New Year

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:42 am by HL

Today’s Quotes: The New Year
“Ring out the old, ring in the new, Ring, happy bells, across the snow: The year is going, let him go; Ring out the false, ring in the true.” – Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1850. “New Year’s Day is [everyone’s] birthday.” – Charles Lamb “New Year’s Day: Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can […]


Vision: 8 Ways We’re Making America a Better Place — in Spite of the Disasters Coming out of Washington

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:41 am by HL

Vision: 8 Ways We’re Making America a Better Place — in Spite of the Disasters Coming out of Washington
We can have the kind of economy, government, environment, and country we want, if we keep pushing, organizing, building, and otherwise doing the work of democracy.

AlterNet’s Top Ten Most Popular Stories of the Year
From the dumb things Americans believe to the weirdest things women do to their vaginas.

We’re Hip to the Dangers of Lead and Asbestos in Old Buildings, But We’re Only Just Getting Wise to the Risks Posed by PCBs
Schools across the country are loaded with compounds known to cause major skin irritations and hair loss, and we still aren’t aware of their full effects.


Presented By:

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:40 am by HL

Presented By:

Anti-Semitism, Islamo-Hatred & Glenn Beck
Has anyone noticed that right-wingers are really exercised about anti-Semitism these days except when it emanates from right-wingers? This week in Forbes, Abigail R. Esman pens an utterly over-the-top column called “World To Jews: Drop Dead.” Dead! She claims…

Jeff Goldberg Despairs About Israel
I rarely, if ever, agree with the Atlantic’s Jeff Goldberg about the Middle East. He is the staunchest advocate of Israel’s case in the media today. How big is Goldberg? So big that when Fidel Castro decided to improve relations…


Mortgage Bankers Association Stands Against Successful Foreclosure Prevention Efforts

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:39 am by HL

Mortgage Bankers Association Stands Against Successful Foreclosure Prevention Efforts
In April 2009, the Mortgage Bankers Association — with the help of Congressional Republicans and the rest of the banking industry — successfully lobbied against the adoption of mortgage cram-down legislation, which would have allowed judges to modify mortgages for troubled borrowers in bankruptcy court. That legislation’s defeat, and the MBA’s subsequent celebrations, led Sen. […]

In April 2009, the Mortgage Bankers Association — with the help of Congressional Republicans and the rest of the banking industry — successfully lobbied against the adoption of mortgage cram-down legislation, which would have allowed judges to modify mortgages for troubled borrowers in bankruptcy court. That legislation’s defeat, and the MBA’s subsequent celebrations, led Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) to say that when it comes to the Senate, the banks, “frankly, own the place.” And with 2010 coming to a close, the MBA is once again standing in opposition to programs aimed at keeping families in their homes — this time by taking aim at what are known as mortgage mediation programs, which push banks to negotiate with borrowers before finalizing a foreclosure:

John Mechem, a spokesman for the Mortgage Bankers Association, which represents the largest mortgage lenders, said the group is opposed to both mandatory and voluntary mediation programs. He argued that the programs are expensive and are often used by borrowers as a tactic to stall foreclosure.

As The Wonk Room explained, with foreclosures on pace to top one million this year and federal foreclosure prevention programs falling woefully short of their goals, mediation has been incredibly successful, as the sessions require lenders to actively negotiate, instead of giving borrowers the run-around. As Christopher Brecciano, a Connecticut attorney who represents borrowers, explained, mediation “requires the borrower to sit eye to eye with the bank’s attorney and means there is someone to hold accountable rather than just some service person on the telephone.” Sixty-two percent of those entering Connecticut’s mediation program received a permanent loan modification, while in Nevada seventy-four percent received one.


Tea-party activists question if rebel political movement has changed for worse

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on January 1st, 2011 5:38 am by HL

Tea-party activists question if rebel political movement has changed for worse
On the first day of December, Gena Bell walked into the lobby of the CasaMagna Resort in Cancun, both thrilled and a little wary about what was to come.

The Fix: Joe Miller bows out in Alaska
Alaska GOP Senate candidate Joe Miller announced Friday that he will not push forward with a legal challenge to Sen. Lisa Murkowski’s reelection win, bringing an end to the last unresolved Senate race in the country.

Dionne: A happy, rational new year
Happy New Year to all. I won’t bore you with my personal New Year’s resolutions, but I do hope we might collectively agree (and please don’t charge me with “collectivism”) that not everything a politician does or says should be politicized and attacked. Sometimes, there really are matters we agre…


Justice Roberts urges end to partisan fights blocking action on federal judges
There is an “urgent need” for Senate Democrats and Republicans to put aside their bickering and fill federal judicial vacancies, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote Friday in his annual State of the Judiciary report.