Open Line Friday!

“If the upcoming election could be decided on social issues, the Republicans could win that in a landslide because we’re on the right side of the culture war. The problem is we’re scared to death of it! The Republican establishment wants no part of it. They want no part of the culture. They want no part of social issues. They have been ticked off about this.”

–Rush Limbaugh, yesterday

46 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

    • PitaPita says:

      I was still spurting and choking on a string of “you stupid SOBisms (?) when Andrea moved on to another subject. It was obvious, she couldn’t go to commercial fast enough.  

      • droll says:

        Apparently told her daughters as well. Oddly, she didn’t tell her sons anything at all.

        So yeah.

        (Fun fact: My grandmother is one of ten kids, seven of them girls. Six of them had “premature” babies, with an average weight of about 7.5#. Grandma included in the six. Can this really be this difficult?)

        • BlueCat says:

          the joke being that holding an aspirin between the knees means you can’t open them.  We had all kinds of funny jokes back then featuring racism, misogyny, ethnic bigotry, anti-Semitism.  What a laugh riot.

  1. VanDammerVanDammer says:

    And now Facebook gets scarier —

    … on Thursday Facebook asked certain popular users to upload photos of their government issued IDs (passports, visas, etc) to help the social network test a new accounts verification process.

    “​The new process enables people to verify their identities by submitting a government issued ID,” a Facebook spokesperson said.

    Facebook also revealed to TechCrunch, which first broke the news of the new verification process on Wednesday night, that it will “permanently delete” the ID information after the account holder has been verified.

    Facebook did not elaborate on how exactly it will go about verifying the IDs or the accounts supposedly attached to them.

    really, what’s the worst that could happen folks?

    • DavidThi808DavidThi808 says:

      How Target Figured Out A Teen Girl Was Pregnant Before Her Father Did

      An angry man went into a Target outside of Minneapolis, demanding to talk to a manager:

      “My daughter got this in the mail!” he said. “She’s still in high school, and you’re sending her coupons for baby clothes and cribs? Are you trying to encourage her to get pregnant?”

      The manager didn’t have any idea what the man was talking about. He looked at the mailer. Sure enough, it was addressed to the man’s daughter and contained advertisements for maternity clothing, nursery furniture and pictures of smiling infants. The manager apologized and then called a few days later to apologize again.

      “On the phone, though, the father was somewhat abashed. “I had a talk with my daughter,” he said. “It turns out there’s been some activities in my house I haven’t been completely aware of. She’s due in August. I owe you an apology.”

    • If Facebook wants my ID, I will gladly send them a graphic of Figure 1 (otherwise known as the Flying Fickle Finger of Fate).

      • VanDammerVanDammer says:

        … that it (Facebook) will “permanently delete” the ID information after the account holder has been verified.


        Facebook did not elaborate on how exactly it will go about verifying the IDs or the accounts supposedly attached to them

        DT’s story pretty clearly posits that the girl provided her mailing address while likely building a profile, and failed to opt out of receiving marketing info — a too common aspect of sticky online commerce.

        As for the FB “trust us” bullshit they want some of their more popular Users to show them their gov’t issued ID — a friggin’ gold standard for ID theft resources.  And FB claims to “permanently” delete the info after the User has been verified but how the f*ck does that happen?  The ID is tested against some source of reference and the two are flagged positive once matched, so there is some tag somewhere retained in this credentials process that with a bit of work can be traced back.  

        FB is out to monetize anything & everything about their Users.  Anyone ever read their complete Usage Agreement?  Hell they’ve got a 7,000 word manifesto just in the Data Use Policy section and that can best be imagined as FB flashing a more prominent digit toward your assumed privacy.      

  2. DavidThi808DavidThi808 says:

    Billionaire Peter Thiel Is Worried About America’s Future

    Part of Thiel’s message is calculated to unnerve a liberal Harvard crowd. I ask him why he thought that for the past 30 years innovation has been so narrowly concentrated in technology and finance, with miserably little progress in, say, energy. “Everything else is being regulated to death,” he replies. “From a libertarian perspective, with regulation we have become a much more risk-averse society.”

    I think there’s a lot more to it than that. Software is naturally disruptive and it’s so easy for anyone to write a program on their own. And it’s an industry in its infancy so there will be a lot of major new inventions.

    But I do think there is some validity to this point. Many industries seem locked into doing things the same way as before with the focus on lawyers and lobbyists for advantage rather than innovative change. Like Pharmaceutical companies focusing on extending patents and derivative drugs rather than totally new drugs.

  3. DavidThi808DavidThi808 says:

    Takedowns run amok? The strange Secret Service/GoDaddy assault on JotForm (updated) – It’s a long read but the crux of it is a site providing services to millions of businesses was taken down and it looks like there was no court order, just a request by an individual investigator.

  4. Sir RobinSir Robin says:

    DNA nanorobots deliver ‘suicide’ messages to cancer cells, other diseases

    February 17, 2012.

    Hinged nanorobot opens when target molecules are sensed

    Researchers at Harvard University’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have developed a nanorobotic device made from DNA that could potentially seek out specific cell targets within a complex mixture of cell types and deliver important molecular instructions, such as telling cancer cells to self-destruct.

    Inspired by the mechanics of the body’s own immune system, the technology might one day be used to program immune responses to treat various diseases.

    Using the DNA origami method  (complex 3-D shapes and objects are constructed by folding strands of DNA), the researchers created a nanosize robot in the form of an open barrel whose two halves are connected by a hinge.

    Recognition molecules

    The nanorobot’s DNA barrel acts as a container that can hold various types of contents, including specific molecules with encoded instructions that can interact with specific signaling receptors on cell surfaces, including disease markers.

    The barrel is normally held shut by special DNA latches. But when the latches find their targets, they reconfigure, causing the two halves of the barrel to swing open and expose its contents, or payload.

    Schematic front orthographic view of DNA barrel of closed nanorobot loaded with a protein payload. Two DNA-aptamer locks fasten the front of the device on the left (boxed) and right.

    The researchers used this system to deliver instructions, encoded in antibody fragments, to two different types of cancer cells – leukemia and lymphoma.

    In each case, the message to the cell was: activate your apoptosis or “suicide switch” – which allows aging or abnormal cells to be eliminated.

    This programmable nanotherapeutic approach was modeled on the body’s own immune system, in which white blood cells patrol the bloodstream for any signs of trouble.

    These infection fighters are able to home in on specific cells in distress, bind to them, and transmit comprehensible signals to direct them to self-destruct. This programmable power means the system has the potential to one day be used to treat a variety of diseases.

  5. davebarnesdavebarnes says:


    Not really Wednesday, but Sunday.

    This is precious


  6. Both the House and the Senate passed the payroll, unemployment, and doc fix extension.

    Colorado House Republicans split on the bill – Coffman and Tipton voted Yea, while Gardner and Lamborn voted No.  All Colorado Democrats were in favor.

  7. droll says:

    I happened to run across this today. It’s interesting because it’s just a relatively unbiased breakdown. They did bother to put the theory behind it without offering an opinion.

    Over reaching religions are a pet peeve of mine, brought out stronger than usual after the civil union testimony. So I’ll just leave that at that. Still interesting to know why. Special thanks to MotR for the history lesson in both her diary and her comments. (I’m aware that that reads sarcastic, so I’m officially marking it “without sarcasm”. JIC)

    Have a nice weekend!

  8. Fidel's dirt nap says:

    other crazy stuff, courtesy of Wikipedia:

    In Mormonism, blood atonement is a controversial doctrine that teaches that murder is so heinous that the atonement of Jesus does not apply. Thus, in order to atone for these sins, the perpetrators must have their blood shed upon the ground as a sacrificial offering. The concept was originally taught by Brigham Young, though it appears to be an expansion on the previous teachings of Joseph Smith, Jr.

    The doctrine originated during the Mormon Reformation, when Brigham Young governed the Utah Territory as a near-theocracy. Young and the other members of his First Presidency taught that the doctrine was ideally to be a voluntary choice by the sinner, carried out with love and compassion. Young considered it charitable to sacrifice a life than to see them endure eternal torment in the afterlife. In a full Mormon theocracy, blood atonement practice would be implemented by the state as a penal measure

    • BlueCat says:

      anyone else’s.  As long as they don’t practice those aspects that aren’t legal, just as Jews don’t actually put people to death for all the things requiring that penalty in the Jewish Bible, otherwise known as the Old Testament, including being a disobedient kid and various other infractions that seem quite shockingly minor.

      I mean what religion doesn’t seem odd to those who didn’t grow up in it? For instance, don’t you think the idea that God impregnated a human virgin so he could become flesh and be tortured to death for mankind’s sins might sound pretty weird to a non-Christian? I can tell you it’s a pretty alien concept to Jews as is the idea of a triune God. Meanwhile the Jewish practice of circumcision seems barbaric to many.  

      So let’s not pile on on points of doctrine as long as you don’t force me to accept Jesus as my savior an I don’t force you to get your kid circumcised and nobody posthumously baptizes my grandma into the Mormon religion.

      That’s my only beef; the practice of imposing their unilateral, arrogant, insulting decision to “save” others regardless of the faith or desires of the lucky recipients of their involuntary proxy baptisms

  9. droll says:

    “They can put me anywhere they want, for as long as they want,” he said. “They want to put me in a cell. What is that going to accomplish?”

    Several things, actually. The very least is my brief enjoyment before I forget all about him again. Justice is justice, I suppose, but it isn’t always this funny.

  10. BlueCat says:

    it’s only very recently that the Repugs have changed sides:

    Since President Obama moved to require Catholic hospitals and universities to offer their employees contraceptive health benefits, Republicans have rushed to accuse the administration of an unprecedented attack on religious freedoms.

    None has been more forceful than former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who accused Obama of “a direct violation of the 1st Amendment.” But years before the current partisan firestorm, GOP lawmakers and governors around the country, including Huckabee, backed similar mandates.

    Twenty-two states have laws or regulations that resemble, at least in part, the Obama administration’s original rule. More than a third had some Republican support, a review of state records shows.

    In six states, including Arkansas, those contraceptive mandates were signed by GOP governors.

    Just a very small sampling of the Republicans  besides Huckabee who have either voted for or signed into law birth control coverage requirements that didn’t exempt churches:  

    Gov. Mitt Romney

    Rep  Steve King

    Rep. Linda Binder

    Gov. Jane Hull,

    Gov.George E. Pataki

    Rep.James C. Greenwood

    Sen. Olympia Snowe

    At the federal level GW allowed the same kind of required coverage to stand. Perhaps ArapG can explain to us why what is an outrage against religious freedom by Dems now now wasn’t an outrage when these fine Christian value warrior Republicans had no problem with it.  He can be sure this info will appear to counter accusations of an Obama or Dem war on religious freedom during the  general election.  

    • droll says:

      You should. It’s super easy.

      1. Click “New Diary” under the menu section in the top, right hand corner.

      2. Put a subject and body text, just like a regular comment; it just looks a little bit different.

      3. Click the “Preview” button just below the “Main Text” box. (It’s also under the “Extended Text” box. That’s for text commonly referred to as “after the jump” and isn’t shown on the home page.)

      4. Check it for errors, make sure it’s how you like and click “Save”. It always looks like I didn’t do anything since the page repeats, but if you’ve hit “Save” and the page reloaded, you’re good to go.

      As long as you save it, a FPE will clean it up, or make it do something you want. Both MotR and PCG have active email addresses in their profile.

      I know you’ve been harassed about this before, but… we’re right. So, suck it up.

  11. BlueCat says:

    I’ll give it a try. I recently e-mailed some pics from my computer to the camera shop to have prints made so maybe I’m not as hopeless as I think I am with the computer stuff.  Thanks!  

  12. VoyageurVoyageur says:

    I am convening a special panel to discuss problems of prostate cancer.  Only women need apply.  If the House can have a panel on women’s contraception that consists of four Roman Collars and a Yarmulke, we can have an all women’s panel on men’s health.


  13. davebarnesdavebarnes says:

    “As the country’s election season gets underway, Chavez said of opposition candidate Henrique Capriles that, “you have a pig’s tail, a pig’s ears, and you snort like a pig,” according to AFP.”

  14. VoyageurVoyageur says:


    As Republicans go, Scott Brown is one of the more reasonable.  But this seat is low-hanging fruit for the Ds, and a Brown victory is a vote for making Jim DeMint majority leader.

     If we had about 60 people like Warren in the Senate, we could clean up the mess in Washington.

    • Middle of the Road says:

      with a couple polls showing her ahead of him. She’s worth every penny and she’s getting some of my $$$, as well. Good investment in a brilliant employee that will work for the people that pay her salary, for a change.  

    • BlueCat says:

      embrace of the Blunt amendment that would empower employers and insurers to deny coverage for birth control and  anything else they find morally objectionable is another good reason to support Warren who is now up by 9 points in a recent poll. That and the fact that Warren is really terrific.  

      Odd thing is that this amendment would pretty much let employers and insurers deny coverage for not just birth control but anything just by finding a way to find it morally objectionable. Who gets to decide whether a moral objection is valid or just an excuse to deny cob coverage? Why would Brown think this is a smart mve in a state like Mass.? Is he just tired of being a Senator?

      • BlueCat says:

        Warren was up by 3 and by 7 in a couple of polls but a new one has Brown up by 9. Sorry. I do hope once his stand on the Blunt amendment becomes more widely known this will change.

        • Middle of the Road says:

          Suffolk University Poll has Brown up by 9 but they only polled 600 registered voters and it was conducted Feb. 11-15. Another poll by MassINC conducted last week had her up by 3 points. This race is all over the map.

          Where she is getting hurt is with the negative ads–Warren’s favorables are at 39 compared to 50 for Brown. I think his vote for the Blunt Amendment is going to move those favorables down a bit for him but he’s a guy that is fairly well liked with Independents and within his old state legislative district stomping grounds.  

          This is a race that is definitely in play–nothing proves that more than the amount being spent to slam her. This is going to a tough race. It’s a pick up opportunity for Dems but by no means an easy one, at least not as easy as many folks are assuming.  

          • BlueCat says:

            every other component of Dem alphabet soup along with every other likely entity needs to pump up the money here. Warren is a great, gutsy candidate and taking back the Kennedy seat would be a huge shot in the arm. Money that Colorado Dems don’t have to spend on our Senators this time should go to Warren. Indies and all Mass. women need to know that Brown thinks they should be denied coverage for birth control and pretty much anything on any employer or insurer’s whim. Mass should be ground zero.

  15. The Electoral Wasteland

    But before getting into how this minority has steered the party into a corner, let’s look at the size of the electorate. The nine states that have held caucuses or primaries to date are home to roughly 28 million total registered voters, of all political persuasions.

    So far, three million voters have participated in the Republican races, less than the population of Connecticut. This means that 89 percent of all registered voters in those states have not participated in what is, from a horse-race perspective, a very tight contest.


    I believe it was WhiskeyLimaJane who a short while back pointed out that the question is never is the system broken, but rather, who is the system working for?  To which, I would have to add that there is absolutely no argument.

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