Thursday, August 25, 2011

I use Bing

Google Won't Give Churches Same Break it Gives Other Non-Profits

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Astronomers discover planet made of diamond

Astronomers have spotted an exotic planet that seems to be made of diamond racing around a tiny star in our galactic backyard.

The new planet is far denser than any other known so far and consists largely of carbon. Because it is so dense, scientists calculate the carbon must be crystalline, so a large part of this strange world will effectively be diamond.

"The evolutionary history and amazing density of the planet all suggest it is comprised of carbon -- i.e. a massive diamond orbiting a neutron star every two hours in an orbit so tight it would fit inside our own Sun," said Matthew Bailes of Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne.

Michelle Obama Has Spent $10 Million of Our Money on Vacations Over Past Year

White House sources [yesterday] claimed that the First Lady has spent $10million of U.S. taxpayers’ money on vacations alone in the past year.

Sources say the 47-year-old mother-of-two has been indulging in five-star hotels, where she splashes out on expensive massages and alcohol. …

The First Lady is believed to have taken 42 days of holiday in the past year, including a $375,000 break in Spain and a four-day ski trip to Vail, Colorado, where she spent $2,000 a night on a suite at the Sebastian hotel.

And the first family’s nine-day stay in Martha’s Vineyard is also proving costly, with rental of the Blue Heron Farm property alone costing an estimated $50,000 a week. …

While the President and his wife do pay for some of their personal expenses from their own pocket, the website says that the amount paid by the couple is ‘dwarfed by the overall cost to the public’.

Some Details:



The exact cost is unclear as Mrs Obama and her 40 friends footed many personal expenses, such as hotels and meals themselves.

But the U.S. taxpayer would have paid for the First Lady's 68-strong security detail, personal staff, and use of presidential jet Air Force Two.

Per diems for the secret service team runs at around $281 each - nearly $98,000 for the length of the summer break.

Use of Air Force Two, the Air Force version of a 757, comes in at $149,900 for the round trip. This does not include time on the ground.

Mrs Obama's personal staff, of which there are an unknown amount and might cost considerably more per day, should also be taken into account.


According to the Hawaii Reporter, the bill for the $1.5m trip included:

  • $63,000 on an early flight bringing Mrs Obama and the children to Hawaii ahead of the President.
  • $1,000,000 on Mr Obama’s return trip from Washington on Air Force One.
  • $38,000 for the ‘Winter White House’ beach property rental.
  • $16,000 to rent nearby homes for Secret Service and Navy Seals.
  • $134,000 for 24 White House staff to stay at the Moana Hotel.
  • $251,000 in police overtime.
  • $10,000 for an ambulance to be on hand at all times


Mrs Obama and her daughters stayed at the Sebastian hotel on Vail Mountain, where rooms cost more than $2,400 for multi-bedroom suites.

The family appear to have flown there on Air Force Two.

They were escorted to the resort by a motorcade of about a dozen vehicles, including 15 state and local law enforcement officers


The Blue Heron Farm estate, where the Obama family are currently staying, rents for about $50,000 a week.

According to U.S. News and World Report, the Coast Guard is required to keep ships floating near the property, the presidential helicopter and jet remain at the ready and security agents will be on 24-hour duty.

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Liberals' Wisconsin Waterloo

George Will on the Left's losses in Wisconsin:
Democrats furiously oppose Walker because public employees unions are transmission belts, conveying money to the Democratic Party. Last year, $11.2 million in union dues was withheld from paychecks of Wisconsin’s executive branch employees and $2.6 million from paychecks at the university across the lake. Having spent improvidently on the recall elections, the Wisconsin Education Association Council, the teachers union, is firing 40 percent of its staff.

Walker has refuted the left’s sustaining conviction that a leftward-clicking ratchet guarantees that liberalism’s advances are irreversible. Progressives, eager to discern a victory hidden in their recent failures, suggest that a chastened Walker will not risk further conservatism. Actually, however, his agenda includes another clash with teachers unions over accountability and school choice, and combat over tort reform with another cohort parasitic off bad public policies — trial lawyers.

As the moonless night of fa$ci$m descends on America’s dairyland, sidewalk graffiti next to the statehouse-square drinking fountain darkly warns: “Free water . . . for now.” There, succinctly, is liberalism’s credo: If everything isn’t “free,” meaning paid for by someone else, nothing will be safe.

AFL-CIO president smacks Obama for weak, 'little nibbly' labor policies

Richard Trumka

'If he continues to do as some of his staff are urging... he doesn't become a leader. He becomes a follower'

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You will either disagree or say damn right.

Perry: 'I Don't Like Washington. I Think It's a Seedy Place'

Uh-oh! One doctor has already told me they are seeing a significant increase in radiation in Pacific seafood.

Fukushima caesium leaks 'equal 168 Hiroshimas'

Fukushima caesium leaks 'equal 168 Hiroshimas'

Officials in protective gear check for signs of radiation on children who are from the evacuation area near the Fukushima nuclear plant

Japan's government estimates the amount of radioactive caesium-137 released by the Fukushima nuclear disaster so far is equal to that of 168 Hiroshima bombs.

The tracks are moving inland.


92 minutes = 3 years

The Least Amount of Exercise Needed To Extend Life

Toe, The writes "Of particular concern to couch potatoes, gamers, and anyone who spends an inordinate amount of time sitting and staring at a screen is how little exercise can I do and still receive a benefit. A new study entitled 'Minimum amount of physical activity for reduced mortality and extended life expectancy: a prospective cohort study,' answers this important question. The conclusion: 92 minutes of moderate activity a week can extend your life by three years."

Where the weddings are

2009 figures from Census Data show marriage rate per 1,000 men in USA

2009 figures from Census Data show marriage rate per 1,000 men in USA

2009 figures from Census Data show marriage rate per 1,000 women in USA

2009 figures from Census Data show marriage rate per 1,000 women in USA

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Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Kinky is a Texas institution. He is a fun loving, sharp witted, rascal. This is a great and honest endorsement.

Kinky Friedman for Perry

The most entertaining endorsement you’ll ever read.

It’s one thing to get one’s usual allies to endorse a candidacy for higher office.  It’s quite another to get one’s former opponent to give an endorsement.  Kinky Friedman, who once ran against Rick Perry for governor and lost, writes a remarkable — and remarkably enjoyable — endorsement of Perry, both as a politician and a man:

I have been quoted as saying that when I die, I am to be cremated, and the ashes are to be thrown in Rick Perry’s hair. Yet, simply put, Rick Perry and I are incapable of resisting each other’s charm. He is not only a good sport, he is a good, kindhearted man, and he once sat in on drums with ZZ Top. A guy like that can’t be all bad. When I ran for governor of Texas as an independent in 2006, the Crips and the Bloods ganged up on me. When I lost, I drove off in a 1937 Snit, refusing to concede to Perry. Three days later Rick called to give me a gracious little pep talk, effectively talking me down from jumping off the bridge of my nose. Very few others were calling at that time, by the way. Such is the nature of winning and losing and politicians and life. You might call what Rick did an act of random kindness. Yet in my mind it made him more than a politician, more than a musician; it made him a mensch.

These days, of course, I would support Charlie Sheen over Obama. Obama has done for the economy what pantyhose did for foreplay. Obama has been perpetually behind the curve. If the issue of the day is jobs and the economy, Rick Perry is certainly the nuts-and-bolts kind of guy you want in there. …

More to the point, could Rick Perry fix the economy? Hell, yes! Texas is exhibit A; Rick’s fingerprints are all over it. He’s been governor since Christ was a cowboy. The Lone Star State is booming. The last time I checked, Texas is kicking in a hell of a lot of the U.S. GDP. Unemployment is lower than the vast majority of the other states. Hell, we could probably even find a job for Paul Begala.

No Bikinis, No Booze, No Egypt.

Muslim Brotherhood Declares War on Bikinis


Sunbathing in Alexandria may soon be a thing of the past, at least if some Egyptian Islamist politicians have their way.

Egypt's tourism industry has suffered a severe blow since the outburst of anti-regime demonstrations in January. But that did not stop the Freedom and Justice Party, the political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood, from demanding stricter regulations over what tourists can do and wear while visiting the country. The party is urging officials to ban skimpy swimwear and the consumption of alcohol on Egyptian streets.

"Beach tourism must take the values and norms of our society into account," Muhammad Saad Al-Katatny, secretary-general of Freedom and Justice, told Egyptian tourism officials on Monday. "We must place regulations on tourists wishing to visit Egypt, which we will announce in advance."

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CNN continues to insult Americans.

CNN’s Cafferty: Perry, Bachmann, Palin Supporters Seem ‘Allergic to Brains’

CNN’s Cafferty: Perry, Bachmann, Palin Supporters Seem ‘Allergic to Brains’

He then refers to them as Curly, Moe and Larry.

73 years ago today

On this day in 1939, The Wizard of Oz, which will become one of the best-loved movies in history, opens in theaters around the United States.

This is not going to be an easy repair.

More Cracks Found in Washington Monument...

Zuckerman was an Obama Supporter.

Zuckerman Op-Ed: Obama and the 'Competency Crisis'


By Mortimer Zuckerman
The rising impatience with the leadership of President Obama was epitomized on Aug. 8 in the middle of one of the now-habitual Wall Street roller coasters. His speech on the economy was 53 minutes late. What showed on TV screens was an empty White House podium, an image suggestive of the absence of leadership. When the president did speak, the best he could come up with was "We've always been and always will be a triple-A country." The market's response was a Bronx cheer, a drop of another 300 points.

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CBO Forecasts High Unemployment for Years

AP File

The Congressional Budget Office released it's annual summer update of the budget and economic outlook on Wednesday and according to the CBO's projection, the national unemployment rate "will remain above 8 percent until 2014."

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Remember Obama's Last Big Housing Plan? Inspector General Called It a 'Failure'

AP Graphics

Inspector general: Mortgage modification program a 'failure'

By Gregory Korte, USA TODAY

WASHINGTON - A mortgage modification program aimed at saving homeowners from foreclosure has failed because regulators are "afraid to rein in or impose penalties on the mortgage servicers" whose record "has been nothing short of abysmal," the program's watchdog told Congress Wednesday.

As a result, some House Republicans moved to scrap the 2-year-old program.

Neil Barofsky, the special inspector general for the government's bank bailouts, bluntly labeled the mortgage program a "failure" in testimony before the House oversight committee.

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He makes Obama look serious.

Biden's Ode To Speaking 'Succinctly' Takes 863 Words...
Continues Another 4 Minutes After Saying He'll Make It 'Brief As I Can'...

Irene. Good luck figuring out where it is going.



Political Cartoons by Robert Ariail

Man Faces 2 Years in Prison for Shooting Grizzly While Defending Family

This is quite a story. A man charged with unlawfully shooting and killing a grizzly bear in defense of his family, garnered so many supporters at his arraignment in U.S. District Court Tuesday that the judge had to move the hearing to a larger courtroom.

Even in the larger space, however, every seat was reportedly occupied as the man’s family, friends and neighbors vied for a place to show their support.

Jeremy M. Hill, 33, pleaded not guilty to killing the grizzly with a rifle on his 20-acre property near Porthill, Idaho, at the Canadian border.

Because the Endangered Species Act classifies the grizzly as a threatened species, Hill was charged with a misdemeanor.

The trial has been set for October 4 and Hill’s lawyer, Marc Lyons, said he plans to defend Hill on the basis of self-defense and protection of family.

Jeremy Hill’s father, Mike Hill, said his son was concerned for the safety of his children who were playing outside when the mother grizzly and her two cubs happened onto his property in May.

Hill has six children ranging in age from 14 years old to 10 months old and at least five were reportedly home when the grizzly appeared and was later killed.

Sunday Night, Bush’s first telling of 9/11

'War on Terror' president re-tells the 9/11 story as he lived it

George W. Bush

President George W. Bush recalls the day that changed the world in National Geographic interview

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Allah’ pretty much a wuss

WELL, THEN ALLAH’S PRETTY MUCH A WUSS, ISN’T HE? Online Islamist: East Coast earthquake ‘Allah’s punishment on Americans.’

According to a posting titled “Allah’s punishment on Americans” on the Shoumokh Al-Islam jihadi forum by someone writing under the name Abu Ibrahim, “Allah has struck New York and the capital city Washington by an earthquake as a punishment for their disbelief.”

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It is only unexpected in the media. The real problem is how many people are not even counted.

U.S. Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly. Again!

UPDATE: Initial Claims Surge Far Higher Than Consensus, 1.2 Million Americans Have Dropped Off Extended Benefits Claim In Past Year.

Gawker and 7 Other Formerly Popular Sites That Are Dead or Dying

This popular gossip site's traffic has dropped 75 percent this year, according to Compete, and has wallowed in its own bad press over the years: cuts in freelancer budgets, a stalker map that showed the location of celebs, and several site changes. At the same time, tech sister-site Gizmodo has risen in the ranks, growing views by 10% this year.

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Hurricane projections
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More info on bear hibernation

Hibernating bear with cubs born earlier in the winter. After the cubs were born their mother’s heart rate returned to hibernation levels. For several weeks after giving birth the mothers also exhibited much less movement, preventing accidental damage to the suckling cubs.

Previous studies have shown that during hibernation black bears undergo extreme variations in heart rate (respiratory sinus arrhythmia) -- the bear's heart rate increases when it takes a breath but stops for extended periods between breaths. In this study the researchers were able to monitor wild American black bears (Ursus americanus) throughout the year, 24 hours a day. They found that the bears had a pronounced respiratory sinus arrhythmia during hibernation and in the months leading up to their winter sleep. In addition, the bears were less active during the day in autumn, switching to being nocturnal. During the summer months, bears were active for up to 18 hours per day and had peak heart rates of over 200 beats per minute, however, during hibernation, respiration rates were as low as two breaths per minute and gaps of over 14 seconds without a heartbeat were recorded.

Pregnant wild bears hibernated deeply at the beginning of winter but their heart rates increased as their pregnancy continued, spiking during birth. After the cubs were born their mother's heart rate returned to hibernation levels. For several weeks after giving birth the mothers also exhibited much less movement, preventing accidental damage to the suckling cubs.


Initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 417,000