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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Today's Obama Endorsements

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker is the latest big name to endorse Sen. Barack Obama. Mr.Volcker served from 1979 through 1987 under Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan.

“After 30 years in government, serving under five Presidents of both parties and chairing two non-partisan commissions on the Public Service, I have been reluctant to engage in political campaigns. The time has come to overcome that reluctance,” Volcker, a Democrat, said in a statement today. “However, it is not the current turmoil in markets or the economic uncertainties that have impelled my decision.

Rather, it is the breadth and depth of challenges that face our nation at home and abroad. Those challenges demand a new leadership and a fresh approach.”He concluded: “It is only Barack Obama, in his person, in his ideas, in his ability to understand and to articulate both our needs and our hopes that provide the potential for strong and fresh leadership. That leadership must begin here in America but it can also restore needed confidence in our vision, our strength, and our purposes right around the world.”

Rep. John Larson today became the first senior member of the House Democratic leadership to endorse a presidential candidate, and his pick is Sen. Barack Obama. The Connecticut lawmaker, who serves as vice chairman of the House Democratic caucus, expects to campaign back home with Obama early next week, in advance of his state's Feb. 5 primary.


Also announcing for Obama this morning: Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), a close friend of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Eshoo joins another Californian and Pelosi pal, Rep. George Miller, on the Obama bandwagon. Rep. Xavier Becerra, an up-and-coming lawmaker from Los Angeles, is yet another Pelosi ally supporting Obama.

Pelosi has said firmly that she won't pick sides. But she sounded almost giddy talking about Ted Kennedy's support for the Illinois senator in an interview with her hometown newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle (which also endorsed Obama). "Did you ever see anything like that?" Pelosi said. "Transferring the mantle from John F. Kennedy to Barack Obama. It was the most stunning thing. I mean, I couldn't take my eyes off it."

Elizabeth B. Moynihan, the widow of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the New York senator who, from a hayfield on his upstate farm, helped shepherd Hillary Rodham Clinton into his Senate seat, has endorsed Barack Obama for the Democratic presidential nomination.

She wrote that her husband, who died in 2003, “would have become excited, as I have, to see Barack Obama rekindle hope in our young as he encourages them to participate in the political process, and I know Pat would approve, applaud and encourage me to join Caroline Kennedy in supporting Barack Obama’s candidacy for the Democratic nomination for president.”

“It is a rare gift to be able to inspire people to share a vision that requires commitment and dedication,” she wrote in the e-mail message, to David Axelrod, a senior adviser to Mr. Obama. “The hope that John Kennedy characterized for Americans spread across the world, then faded with his death,” Mrs. Moynihan wrote. “I believe Obama, like Kennedy, has the gift to transcend obstacles and to inspire Americans to bring out the best in themselves. I firmly believe the election of Barack Obama would help restore hope and America’s image in the world.”

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John McCain is Dr. Strangelove

The latest entry from the crew over at Brave New Films:

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Clinton Remained Silent As Wal-Mart Fought Unions

Although there is no mention of it in her official biography, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Hillary Clinton served for six years on the board of Wal-Mart, the huge retailer criticized by many for its treatment of workers and its strident opposition to unions.

In six years as a member of the Wal-Mart board of directors, between 1986 and 1992, Hillary Clinton remained silent as the world's largest retailer waged a major campaign against labor unions seeking to represent store workers.

Clinton has been endorsed for president by more than a dozen unions, according to her campaign Web site, which is devoid of any reference to her tenure at Wal-Mart in its detailed biography of her.

Wal-Mart's anti-union efforts were headed by one of Clinton's fellow board members, John Tate, a Wal-Mart executive vice president who also served on the board with Clinton for four of her six years. Tate was fond of repeating, as he did at a managers meeting in 2004 after his retirement, what he said was his favorite phrase, "Labor unions are nothing but blood-sucking parasites living off the productive labor of people who work for a living."

Wal-Mart says Tate's comments "were his own and do not reflect Wal-Mart's views." But Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton and other company officials often recounted how they relied on Tate to lead the company's successful anti-union efforts.

An ABC News analysis of the videotapes of at least four stockholder meetings where Clinton appeared shows she never once rose to defend the role of American labor unions.

Click HERE to view that report.

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ABC: Every Soldier I talked to is for Obama

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A Personal Note

On this important date in my life, my mother was born in 1924. Although her parents were told that she would never see her 18th birthday, she persisted in living until August 22, 2001. Mom endured and fought back against leukemia her entire life. She suffered through a lifetime of treatments, pills, transfusions, and my teenage years in defiance of her diagnosis. On the date of my arrival into this world, she was 40 years old. Having two daughters of my own, I cannot fathom her state of mind in adding a new son at that age! Luckily for me, she was a strong woman.

She always claimed that we had a severe winter storm every year on her birthday, and. . . .here we are. It's normally an ice storm, but perhaps Mom's taking it easy on me this year. It would be her way to ease the road ahead for me and to defend me to the very end. There is no greater truth, at least in my experience, that a mother's love is unconditional. You might call her a "doting mother", or "over-protective"; I called her "Mom".

And I miss her. The above picture is Mom shepherding me along to my first day of school at Lafayette Elementary School. In 2005, my wife snapped a picture of our oldest daughter in the same scenario, a mere few miles from this locale and in the same old school district. Samantha was 18 months old when she lost her grandma - she doesn't remember her. But she still takes a present from her to bed with her every night.

Mom had purchased a Thumbelina Doll for Sam as a Christmas present the year that she died. It has served as a bond between Mom, Sam, and I ever since. Good night Mom. We miss you. . .

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Our Crazy Language

We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes;
But the plural of ox became oxen not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
Yet the plural of moose should never be meese.
You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice;
Yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.
If the plural of man is always called men,
Why shouldn't the plural of pan be called pen?
If I spoke of my foot and show you my feet,
And I give you a boot, would a pair be called beet?
If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth,
Why shouldn't the plural of booth be called beeth?
Then one may be that, and three would be those,
Yet hat in the plural would never be hose,
And the plural of cat is cats, not cose.
We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
But though we say mother, we never say methren.
Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him,
But imagine the feminine, she, shis and shim.

Let's face it, English is a crazy language.

There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger;
Neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins weren't invented in England.

We take English for granted.

But if we explore its paradoxes,
We find that quicksand can work slowly,
Boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea, nor is it a pig.
And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing,
Grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham?
Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends,
But not one amend?
If you have a bunch of odds and ends
And get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?
If teachers taught,
Why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables,
What does a humanitarian eat?

Sometimes, I think all the folks who grew up speaking English should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane.

In what other language do people recite at a play and play at a recital?
Ship by truck and send cargo by ship?
Have noses that run and feet that smell?
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?
You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down; in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which an alarm goes off by going on.
Where did this strange language come from and why do we speak it?
'Cause we don't know another, I guess...

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

When I Grow Up. . .

I'm speechless:

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Bowie must be so proud:

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If Obama is JFK, Who Does That Make Hillary?

A "guest column" by John Wiener:

Ted Kennedy's statement Monday that Obama was like JFK set off a storm of historical analogies. Hillary's side fired back that she is like Bobby Kennedy -- at least that's what three of Bobby's kids said the next day: "Like our father, Hillary has devoted her life to embracing and including those on the bottom rung of society's ladder," Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Kerry Kennedy declared.

Hillary herself has claimed not so long ago that SHE is our JFK: "A lot of people back then [1960] said, 'America will never elect a Catholic as president,'" she said in New Hampshire last March. "When people tell me 'a woman can never be president,' I say, we'll never know unless we try." And of course she also compared herself to LBJ, whose political skills, she said, made it possible for him to sign into law what she called "Dr. King's dream."

Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times compared Obama to Lincoln (both were undistinguished newcomers when they ran for president). Paul Krugman of the New York Times compared Hillary to Grover Cleveland (both were conservative Democrats in a Republican era). Biographer Joseph Ellis compared Obama to Thomas Jefferson (both spoke in favor of nonpartisan politics).

Sorting out these claims is, of course, a job for professionals -- professional historians. They too are partisans. The only organized political group of historians in this campaign in "Historians for Obama," which includes Joyce Appleby, former president of the American Historical Association; Robert Dallek, the award-wining presidential biographer; David Thelen, former editor of the Journal of American History; and the Pulitzer-prize winning Civil War historian James McPherson.

Their statement made some sweeping analogies: "Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation and kept the nation united; Franklin D. Roosevelt persuaded Americans to embrace Social Security and more democratic workplaces; John F. Kennedy advanced civil rights and an anti-poverty program. Barack Obama has the potential to be that kind of president."

On the other side, there is no historians-for-Hillary organization, but there is Sean Wilentz -- the Princeton professor and award-winning author of The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln who testified for the defense at the Clinton impeachment hearing. He recently took on the key Obama analogies in an LA Times op-ed. First, he said, Obama is no JFK: "By the time he ran for president, JFK had served three terms in the House and twice won election to the Senate," Wilentz wrote. "Before that, he was, of course, a decorated veteran of World War II, having fought with valor in the South Pacific."

And to compare Obama to Lincoln, Wilentz says, is "absurd": "Yes, Lincoln spent only two years in the House," but in 1858, when he ran unsuccessfully for the Senate, Lincoln "engaged with Stephen A. Douglas in the nation's most important debates over slavery before the Civil War."

On the other hand, Robert Dallek, author of biographies of LBJ and Kennedy, has explained that the appeal of JFK in 1960 has clear parallels to Obama's campaign today: "it's the aura, it's the rhetoric, the youthfulness, the charisma," he told the Chicago Tribune blog "The Swamp."

Then there is the Lincoln analogy. Eric Foner, the former American Historical Association president and author of Reconstruction, points out that, in 1860, the Republicans had to choose between two candidates: one who claimed decades of experience in politics, the other with much less, who won support because his oratory was so inspiring and he was deemed more electable. In 1860, the candidate with experience lost the nomination to Lincoln; he was William H. Seward. That makes it fair to say that Hillary could be our Seward.

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New Gallup Poll: Obama closes in on Clinton

Last week, it was "America's First Black President",Bill Clinton, playing "the race card" (I STILL can't believe it!). This week, it's Hillary demanding that the Michigan and Florida delegates be given to her, after she agreed to the same DNC rules as Obama and Edwards. Hillary. . .open your eyes and look at where these tactics have led you. These are the politics of Republicans - These are the politics that "we the people" are tired of - These are the politics that are destroying your lifelong "dream":

Barack Obama has now cut the gap with Hillary Clinton to 6 percentage points among Democrats nationally in the Gallup Poll Daily tracking three-day average, and interviewing conducted Tuesday night shows the gap between the two candidates is within a few points. Obama's position has been strengthening on a day-by-day basis. As recently as Jan. 18-20, Clinton led Obama by 20 points. Today's Gallup Poll Daily tracking is based on interviews conducted Jan. 27-29, all after Obama's overwhelming victory in South Carolina on Saturday. Two out of the three nights interviewing were conducted after the high-visibility endorsement of Obama by Sen. Edward Kennedy and his niece Caroline Kennedy.

Clinton's lead in the three-day average is now 42% to Obama's 36%. John Edwards, who dropped out of the race Wednesday after Gallup conducted these interviews, ended his quest for the presidency with 12% support. Wednesday night's interviewing will reflect the distribution of the vote choice of former Edwards' supporters as well as the impact, if any, of Hillary Clinton's popular vote win in Florida on Tuesday.

These national numbers are a critically important indicator of the political environment when voters in more than 20 states go to the polls next Tuesday. At the moment, Obama has the momentum among Democrats nationally.

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Edwards Bows Out

John Edwards "takes one for the team":

John Edwards ended his second race for the presidency of these divided states of America this afternoon. His was a spirited, underfunded race with a populist note, which pledged to represent the powerless against the corporate interests. Edwards said that Clinton and Obama had both pledged to him that "they will make ending poverty central to their campaign for the presidency."

Displaying his usual class and ability to be a true team player, Edwards said it was time to step aside "so that history can blaze its path" in a campaign now left to Clinton and Obama. No word as of yet on an endorsement of either remaining candidate, although both are actively courting his supporters at this time.

The "Mudcat Lobby" - STOP Hillary!

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Obama Assassination? CBS Anchor asks. . .Ted Kennedy?

Ted Kennedy, appearing on CBS' "The Early Show" this morning in support of Obama, was forced to endure Harry Smith's insensitivity as the news anchor took the opportunity to do a little whistling past the Kennedy family graveyard:

(At 1:55 in the video)
SMITH: When you see that enthusiasm though, and when you see the generational change that seems to be taking place before our eyes, does it make you at all fearful?

Naturally, Kennedy really didn't catch on to what Smith was driving at, and responded, "I think that what people are basically saying is that they want a new day and a new generation."

Lacking a more heavy-handed way of getting his point across, like, say, whipping out the Zapruder film or something, Smith delicately waded back into the matter of political assassination:

SMITH: I just...ahhh--I think what I was trying to say is, sometimes agents of change end up being targets, as you well know, and that was why I was asking if you were at all fearful of that.

Kennedy elected not to speculate on the matter, for once demonstrating that the repetition of campaign talking points can help to paper over a host of media sins.

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Margaret Truman has died at 83

Margaret Truman Daniel, the only child of former President Harry S. Truman, has died at the age of 83. She succumbed at a Chicago assisted living facility following a brief illness. Ms.Truman was born Feb. 17, 1924, in Independence,Missouri. My mother, Betty Good, was born here in Fort Wayne, Indiana a mere 18 days prior.

Her father's succession to the presidency in 1945 thrust her into the national spotlight while a college junior.

"I feel that I've lived several different lives and that was one of them," she said in 1980. "Some of it was fun, but most of it was not. It was a great view of history being made. The only thing I ever missed about the White House was having a car and driver," she once said.

She went on to become a concert singer, actress, radio and TV personality and mystery writer. She found a fulfilling professional and personal life in New York City where she met her husband, journalist Clifton Daniel, who later became managing editor of The New York Times. They married in 1956.

She published her first book, an autobiography titled "Souvenir," in that same year. Although she said it was "hard work" and told reporters: "One writing job is enough", she went on to do a book on White House pets in 1969, and later more, one a biography of her father. The idea of doing a mystery called "Murder in the White House" came "out of nowhere," she said.

That 1980 title was followed by mysteries set in the Supreme Court, the Smithsonian, Embassy Row, the FBI, Georgetown, the CIA, Kennedy Center, the National Cathedral and the Pentagon. The last book, "Murder on K Street," was released last year. Donald Bain, a well-known ghost writer, was rumored to have written Truman's mysteries, but he has denied it.

Later in life, she was a grandmother and sang only in her church choir.

"I've had three or four different careers," she told an interviewer in 1989. "I consider being a wife and mother a career. I have great respect for women _ both those who go out and do their thing and those who stay at home. I think those who stay at home have a lot more courage than those who go out and get a job."

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No, I am not yanking your chain! Obama supporters have created a sort of mini version of YouTube, filled with videos from supporters all across the country! Click the logo above to go check it out for yourself. Here's a sample from George Clooney:

And look out for this brilliant little five-year-old! She's gonna be president herself someday!

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Obama's response to the SOTU

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Bush Gets A Kiss

President Bush get a farewell kiss from GOP Rep. Chris Shays. Try not to throw up in your mouth:

Then go to Think Progress and see their "fact checking" of yesterday's SOTU.

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Monday, January 28, 2008

State of the Union Address

I (Stan Matuska) watched the State of the Union Address this evening, like many of you had done as well.

Several things came to mind about this address. First off, I felt a little sorry for Bush, as this was his last State of the Union Address. He actually sounded presidential most of the time! I'm like, wow, this guy could be president!

I'm not sure I understand the applauding protocol. I mean, sometimes only the Dem's applauded, and sometimes only the Repub's applauded, and sometimes they all applauded, but the Supreme Court Justice's never applaud. I don't think they're allowed to or something. There was also someone who looked like a court reporter or something that never applauded. Most of the time Pelosi waited for Cheney to stand up before she would; but towards the end, I noticed her take the lead, which forced Cheney to stand... and he didn't like that one bit.

And what's with all the stone faces? I mean, come on. People looked like they were at a funeral or something. There was one shot of someone with a wide mouth yawn during a period of applause, and I thought "well at least there's one person who's not afriad to be honest about their feelings".

I heard a lot of "we need to", but hardly any "here's how were going to". I was reminded of last year when someone counted how many times Pelosi blinked compared to Cheney. I started to watch her blink for a while, but that was just a little less interesting than the speech itself.

I have to say about our president, that he carries himself well, and looks presidential. I like that. I also think he actually believes everything he says. I know this because I have an ex wife who was the exact same way. I actually felt sorry for her because she wasn't deliberately naive, but came by it honestly.

I also became very aware that these were not Bush's written words he was reading. They couldn't have been. The words formed complete sentences and made sense, and also had words that would require a dictionary for the average person.

As far as the actual content, well, you can spray Glade all you want, but it'll never actually take the place of the shit you are trying to cover up.

As boring as Bush was, I couldn't believe how boring the Democratic Response was by Gov. Kathleen Sebelius from Kansas. She was very monotonous and didn't really make much of the State of the Union Address itself. I must confess, I was hoping for something better than her response.

Oh well, I could see Obama with two of his fingers pressed firmly against his lips in the audience as if to say "You can have your say, Mr. Bush, but that podium will be mine this time next year".

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Another Wasted Life (Or Two)

Blueberry has found yet another reason for "life without parole"! This stupid drunk bitch laughed about killing a "f***king tree hugger, a bicyclist, a Frenchman and a gay guy all in one shot." She was arrested after running over, and killing, the cyclist with her BAC at nearly twice the legal limit, AND driving with a suspended license from a previous offense!

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Montel turns the tables on FOX . . .LIVE.

Montel Williams turned the question on live television when he choose to focus on the solders dying in Iraq rather than the passing of Heath Ledger. Faux News HATES it when that happens. . .Montel did not return for a further segment. . .

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Toni Morrison Endorses Obama

Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison -- who famously declared Bill Clinton to be the nation's "first black president" in a 1998 essay -- today endorsed Barack Obama for president. In a letter to Obama she writes, "this opportunity for a national evolution (even revolution) will not come again soon, and I am convinced you are the person to capture it."

Morrison writes of her admiration for Hillary Clinton but says she "cared little for her gender as a source of my admiration".

"Nor do I care very much for your race[s]," Morrison continues to Obama, "I would not support you if that was all you had to offer or because it might make me 'proud.' "

"In thinking carefully about the strengths of the candidates, I stunned myself when I came to the following conclusion: that in addition to keen intelligence, integrity and a rare authenticity, you exhibit something that has nothing to do with age, experience, race or gender and something I don't see in other candidates. That something is a creative imagination which coupled with brilliance equals wisdom.

"Our future is ripe, outrageously rich in its possibilities. Yet unleashing the glory of that future will require a difficult labor, and some may be so frightened of its birth they will refuse to abandon their nostalgia for the womb.

"There have been a few prescient leaders in our past, but you are the man for this time," she concludes.

In an October 1998 essay in The New Yorker, Morrison wrote: "Years ago, in the middle of the Whitewater investigation, one heard the first murmurs: white skin notwithstanding, this is our first black president. Blacker than any actual person who could ever be elected in our children's lifetime."

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Sebelius to Endorse Obama

Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius will deliver the Democratic response to the State of the Union tonight. And, tomorrow or on Wednesday, she plans to give her endorsement to Barack Obama. Sources state that Sebelius decided some time ago that Obama was her candidate but decided to wait until after the State of the Union.

"Right now, the Governor's focus is on delivering her response to the President's State of the Union message Monday night," said Nicole Corcoran, communications director to Sebelius. "The Governor will have more to say about the presidential campaign after Monday."

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You Tell Me

"I think I'm going to H. E. L. L., H. E. L. L. now. I can have a good time, it's no real big deal, but with Lucifer I must deal". . .

Wanna go with? Then add your snappiest caption to this photo, and we can get the group discount price!

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Sunday, January 27, 2008

What is your "Lecter Level"?

This just seemed like an apt sequel to the prior post about that desolate road in the Andes. Click on my results below to take the quiz and determine what your "Lecter Level" is.


I'd also like to take this opportunity to invite several of my larger, slower friends to join me on a mountain climbing expedition later this summer. Bubba, Jim-Bob, I'm talking to you. To prepare for our great adventure, you're all invited to my place for meatloaf, milkshakes, and chocolate pie every night until we depart for our your final destination!

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World's "Most Dangerous Road"

A car travels the road connecting the city of La Paz to the Coroico in the North Yungas , Bolivia. In 1995 the road was tagged as the Worlds Most Dangerous Road by the Inter-American Development Bank. The term "road", used quite loosely here, is little more than a narrow dirt track barely three yards wide, which descends nearly 11,800 ft. in just 40 miles. With no other options currently available, vehicles are forced to drive it, resulting in hundreds of annual deaths as trucks, buses and passenger cars fall thousands of feet down.

Every year it is estimated 200 to 300 people die on a stretch of road less than 50 miles long. In one year alone, 25 vehicles plunged off the road and into the ravine. That is one every two weeks. Here high in the Andes, they are building a new road, a by-pass, to replace the old one. But this is Bolivia, and already it has been 20 years in the making. Who knows when it will be complete? Until it is, people will have to continue offering up their prayers, and taking their lives in their hands on the most dangerous road in the world.

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

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Christian Brando has died at 49

Christian Brando, the troubled eldest son of the late actor Marlon Brando, died from pneumonia on Saturday morning at Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles. He was 49. He had been admitted to the hospital on January 11th.

Born on May 11, 1958, Brando was a high school dropout and never had much of a career. He had small roles in a handful of movies, including 1968's "I Love You, Alice B. Toklas!" but he was better known for his brushes with the law.

He spent five years in prison after pleading guilty to manslaughter in 1990 for killing his sister's boyfriend, Dag Drollet, at the Brando family's hilltop estate. Brando said he accidentally shot Drollet as they struggled for a gun during an argument over whether Drollet, 26, had beaten Brando's pregnant half-sister, Cheyenne.

Cheyenne, who later gave birth to Drollet's son but lost custody of the child, committed suicide in 1995. She was 25. Family associates said she had been distraught since her boyfriend's death. In a 1991 interview with the Los Angeles Times, Brando said he never intended to kill Drollet, but wanted to scare him. "I just sat there and watched the life go out of this guy," Brando said.

At his son's trial, Marlon Brando pleaded for leniency, telling the court: "I think that perhaps I failed as a father."

Brando's ex-wife, Deborah Brando, sued him for domestic violence in 2005. She claimed that shortly after their 2004 marriage, Brando repeatedly beat her and threatened to kill her in the presence of her teenage daughter. Brando countersued, alleging that his ex-wife broke into his home and beat him because he wanted to annul their marriage only 10 weeks after exchanging vows. The lawsuits were settled last year on undisclosed terms.

Brando was charged January 2005 with two counts of spousal abuse and he later pleaded no contest. He was placed on three years' probation and ordered to drug and alcohol rehabilitation as well as a spousal-abuse prevention program.

Brando also was the one-time lover of Bonnie Lee Bakley, who was shot to death in 2001. At one time, Bakley claimed Brando had fathered her child but tests showed it belonged to actor Robert Blake, whom she later married. Blake was tried for her murder and acquitted but later ordered to pay $30 million in a wrongful death lawsuit. During that civil case, Blake's lawyer suggested Brando was the killer, although police never implicated him.

Brando, who had denied any involvement, invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination on the stand during the trial.

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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Who Needs the iPhone?

This baby renders that "contender" totally obsolete! Is there anything that the Sumsing Turbo can't do? ?

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The Business of Death

There's alot of money to be made, or spent depending upon your perspective, in the funeral industry today. Some interesting facts:

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Obama gets Kennedy Endorsement!

Caroline Kennedy officially endorses Barack Obama, via an op ed, in tomorrow's edition of The New York Times, stating that Barack Obama would be "a president like my father":

OVER the years, I’ve been deeply moved by the people who’ve told me they wished they could feel inspired and hopeful about America the way people did when my father was president. This sense is even more profound today. That is why I am supporting a presidential candidate in the Democratic primaries, Barack Obama.

My reasons are patriotic, political and personal, and the three are intertwined. All my life, people have told me that my father changed their lives, that they got involved in public service or politics because he asked them to. And the generation he inspired has passed that spirit on to its children. I meet young people who were born long after John F. Kennedy was president, yet who ask me how to live out his ideals.

Sometimes it takes a while to recognize that someone has a special ability to get us to believe in ourselves, to tie that belief to our highest ideals and imagine that together we can do great things. In those rare moments, when such a person comes along, we need to put aside our plans and reach for what we know is possible.

We have that kind of opportunity with Senator Obama. It isn’t that the other candidates are not experienced or knowledgeable. But this year, that may not be enough. We need a change in the leadership of this country — just as we did in 1960.

Most of us would prefer to base our voting decision on policy differences. However, the candidates’ goals are similar. They have all laid out detailed plans on everything from strengthening our middle class to investing in early childhood education. So qualities of leadership, character and judgment play a larger role than usual.

Senator Obama has demonstrated these qualities throughout his more than two decades of public service, not just in the United States Senate but in Illinois, where he helped turn around struggling communities, taught constitutional law and was an elected state official for eight years. And Senator Obama is showing the same qualities today. He has built a movement that is changing the face of politics in this country, and he has demonstrated a special gift for inspiring young people — known for a willingness to volunteer, but an aversion to politics — to become engaged in the political process.

I have spent the past five years working in the New York City public schools and have three teenage children of my own. There is a generation coming of age that is hopeful, hard-working, innovative and imaginative. But too many of them are also hopeless, defeated and disengaged. As parents, we have a responsibility to help our children to believe in themselves and in their power to shape their future. Senator Obama is inspiring my children, my parents’ grandchildren, with that sense of possibility.

Senator Obama is running a dignified and honest campaign. He has spoken eloquently about the role of faith in his life, and opened a window into his character in two compelling books. And when it comes to judgment, Barack Obama made the right call on the most important issue of our time by opposing the war in Iraq from the beginning.

I want a president who understands that his responsibility is to articulate a vision and encourage others to achieve it; who holds himself, and those around him, to the highest ethical standards; who appeals to the hopes of those who still believe in the American Dream, and those around the world who still believe in the American ideal; and who can lift our spirits, and make us believe again that our country needs every one of us to get involved.

I have never had a president who inspired me the way people tell me that my father inspired them. But for the first time, I believe I have found the man who could be that president — not just for me, but for a new generation of Americans.

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Obama Aces South Carolina

Obama routed Hillary Hillary in South Carolina tonight, regaining momentum in the run up to Super Tuesday on Feb. 5. 1,600 Democratic National Convention delegates will be delegated on that one single day. In a state where nearly 50% of voters voters are black, Obama carried nearly 80% of the black vote. He captured 25% of the white vote, with the remainder split almost evenly between Clinton and Edwards.

The fig
ht for second place remains too tight to call at the time of this post. A third place finish for Edwards, in the state where he was born, would likely be the death knell for his campaign. It would also be a serious setback for Clinton, although she has nearly written off the state over the last few days.

This leaves the
tally thus far as:

  • Obama - 2 wins (Iowa and South Carolina)
  • Clinton - 1 win (New Hampshire)
  • Tie - Nevada (Clinton edged in turnout, Obama in delegates)
I'm excluding Michigan for obvious reasons. There will be a huge inter-party fight if Clinton is handed those delegates. For updated exit polling from South Carolina, click HERE.

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George Clooney Must Move!

George Clooney recently found out he lives a few houses away from Britney Spears. It was probably the night she was taken to the hospital after the custody stand-off, and now he jokes he has to move. The video of him telling the story is worthy of a watch for Clooney's story-telling capabilities:

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Jerry O'Connel spoofs Tom Cruise

Best Spoof Video of the week: Jerry O'Connell Mocks Tom Cruise

If you thought that Tom Cruise's bizarre Scientology video was going to escape the radar of comedians out there, think again. After 'Late Late Show' host Craig Ferguson did his outrageous impersonation, Jerry O'Connell also took a pitch-perfect swing at the 'Mission Impossible' star.

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Friday, January 25, 2008

How Much Money did Exxon/Mobil Make Last Year?

This is just obscene! Listen to Cenk Ugyr (Young Turks) and Christie Harvey (C.A.P.)report on the astounding PROFITS of Exxon/Mobile last year:

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The Facts of Life

Some interesting facts:


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Friday Nite Retro

TGIF! Okay - disclaimer time - I've actually been on vacation all week, but I still look forward to Friday Nite Retro! Tonight I'm featuring a survivor of the psychedelic 60's, a man who founded one of the biggest bands of the time, quit, came back, quit again, and went solo. Oddly enough his band couldn't make a decision either; changing their moniker and players several times over the years.

Cincinnati native Martyn Jerel Buchwald was born January 30, 1942 and, by his teens, had developed a taste for art and music. At 20 years of age he changed his name to . . .Marty Balin. Recording with Challenge Records, he released the singles "Nobody But You" and "I Specialize in Love". They garnered little attention, so he went to work with his father and got married. His interest in music did not wane and by 1963-64, Balin was leading a folk music quartet called The Town Criers, with fellow band members Larry Vargo, Jan Ellickson and Bill Collins.

Balin was the founder and featured vocalist for Jefferson Airplane from 1965 to 1971. He appeared with the group during their performance at Woodstock in 1969, and less successfully at the disastrous Altamont Speedway concert, where he was knocked unconscious by a biker from the Hells Angels motorcycle club (this event was captured on film in the documentary Gimme Shelter).

As Jefferson Airplane:

Somebody to Love

White Rabbit

Balin left the band twice. In 1971, he departed for three years, recording an album under the group name Bodacious D.F. in 1973, producing an album for the group Grootna, and returning to contribute one song, "Caroline", to Dragon Fly (by which time the band was known as Jefferson Starship).

As Jefferson Starship:


Marty joined Jefferson Starship permanently in 1975. In late 1978, after several major hits (including "Miracles," "With Your Love," "Count on Me," and "Runaway") with Starship, Balin again departed.


With Your Love

Count on Me



In 1981, he released a solo album, Balin, featuring two Top 40 hits, "Hearts" and "Atlanta Lady." This was followed in 1983 by a second solo album, Lucky.


In 1986, he teamed up with Paul Kantner and Jack Casady to form the KBC (Kantner-Balin-Cassidy) Band. A 1989 reunion tour with most of the original members of Jefferson Airplane proved unsuccessful. In 1991 Balin reunited with Kantner in Jefferson Starship The Next Generation, which they still perform as to this day.

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Obama's Top Ten on Letterman


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Today's Quote

"If you ask me, this country could do with a little less motivation. The people who are causing all the trouble seem highly motivated to me. Serial killers, stock swindlers, drug dealers, Christian Republicans. I'm not sure that motivation is always a good thing. You show me a lazy prick lying in bed all day watching TV, and I'll show you a guy who's not causing any trouble."

-George Carlin

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Thursday, January 24, 2008

He Couldn't Do the Time

A 72 year old Lynchburg, Virginia is in jail today charged with robbery and use of a firearm in commission of a felony. Duval Alexander Davis Sr. stands accused of robbing a Lynchburg bank, at least before he changed his mind.

According to police, Davis entered Carter Bank and Trust
on Nov. 29 armed with a gun and told the branch manager, "give me all your money."

Witness state that Davis then appeared to be conflicted, handing the money b
ack to the teller and asking her to call the police. He also tried to give her his gun. A Lynchburg General District judge ruled on Wednesday that prosecutors have enough evidence to send the case to a grand jury.

No word on whether or not Davis was under the influence of any "Lynchburg Lemonade". . .

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According to an account in the New York Times, Michael Savage broadcasts his show out of three "virtual safe houses" - whose location he will not reveal - and "is licensed to carry a pistol and does so," out of fears for his life. I wonder why. . .wait, no I don't. Watch this:

At least four major firms, including Union Bank of California (whose representative says they were advertisers on the Savage show by mistake and were glad to be taken off), Intuit, Chattem, and ITT Technical Institute have pulled advertising from Savage's nationally show following the above-listed campaign which highlights his inflammatory rhetoric. One other company, Geico insurance, is expected to follow suit.

The campaign, launched recently by Brave New Films, generated thousands of calls urging advertisers on the Savage Nation show to sever financial ties to the widely popular (and frequently offensive) talk host.

"We are thrilled at the amazing response of the true patriots all over the blogsphere who responded to our NOSAVAGE campaign," said Robert Greenwald. "People have called and emailed and the responsible sponsors have responded by pulling their ads and asking that their ads not be on this racist and hateful show."

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Why Men are Happier....

Men Are Just Happier People. . .What do you expect from such simple creatures?

Your last name stays put. The garage is all yours. Wedding plans take care of themselves. Chocolate is just another snack. You can never be pregnant. You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park. You can wear NO shirt to a water park. Car mechanics tell you the truth. The world is your urinal.

You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is just too icky. You don't have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut on a bolt. Same work, more pay. Wrinkles add character. Wedding dress $5000. Tux rental-$100. People never stare at your chest when you're talking to them. New shoes don't cut, blister, or mangle your feet. One mood all the time.

Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat. You know stuff about tanks. A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase. You can open all your own jars. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. If someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend.

Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack. Three pairs of shoes are more than enough. You almost never have strap problems in public. You are unable to see wrinkles in your clothes. Everything on your face stays its original color. The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You only have to shave your face and neck.

You can play with toys all your life. One wallet and one pair of shoes -- one color for all seasons. You can wear shorts no matter how your legs look. You can 'do' your nails with a pocket knife. You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.

You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24 in 25 minutes.

No wonder men are happier.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Space Tourists, Your Chariot Awaits!

If you have the cash, a journey to the stars could await you in 2009. The spaceflight division of Richard Branson's company, Virgin Galactic, has unveiled it's new proto-type for a commercial spaceship that will carry tourists to the stars.

SpaceShipTwo is the actual space vessel with White Knight Two serving as the the plane that will carry it high enough into the atmosphere to launch itself. SpaceShipTwo has the capacity to carry eight people at a time into sub-orbit, two pilots and six passengers, each of whom will pay $200,000 for the right to be one of the few humans to see the earth from above.

The White Knight Two is already almost complete, with testing scheduled for later this year, while SpaceShipTwo is about 60% complete. The flights will take off from the Spaceport that Virgin Galactic is building in the New Mexico desert.

Some very cool additional pics are available at Gizmodo. . .

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Slim Whitman is ALIVE!

Ladies and gentlemen, it's official!

On 1-21, I received an e-mail from a normally very reliable source which stated that Slim Whitman had passed away. I verified this by checking Wikipedia, then proceeded to write an obituary in tribute to the man.

The story quickly became muddled however, as no other outlets were reporting the death. It was originally reported in The Tennessean, but all but the title of the story disappeared the following day. I quickly began receiving queries from concerned fans asking where I'd gotten my information. They were convinced, rightly so as it turns out, that Mr.Whitman was alive and well.

I'd like to thank the members of The Steel Guitar Forum for their original queries and information which they passed along to me. For you guys, here are some real news reports:

From The Florida Times Union:

Rumors that country crooner Slim Whitman died Sunday on his 84th birthday are, as they say, “greatly exaggerated.” Online and mainstream media reports that the famous Middleburg resident had died are wrong, he told the Times-Union today.

“I can still sing,” he said. “If you are dead, you can’t sing.” Whitman said he learned a day or so ago that an old friend was reporting that Whitman had died on his birthday.
“It got all over,” Whitman said.

And, from the original source of the premature obit, The Tennessean:

Slim Whitman would like to clear something up: He’s alive and doing pretty well despite reports of his death on Monday.

The country singer, who experienced his first surge in popularity in the ’50s, has no idea how it got started. But e-mails began circulating and next thing you know, a disc jockey was announcing it on the air, a tearful friend performing on stage was announcing it to his audience and online sources reported it in news updates, including Tennessean.com on Monday.

“All of a sudden on Sunday, Jan. 20, I died,” said Whitman, who turned 84 on Sunday. “I knew it was a lie. I kept looking at it. I thought, this could sort of get out of hand here. I thought, oh well, if it gets out of hand, I’ll go on a TV show and show them that I’m not dead.”

Whitman lives on his Woodpecker Paradise estate outside Jacksonville, Fla. He says he’s in great shape. The only medication he takes is an aspirin every other day because his doctor told him to. He doesn’t even wear glasses.

“As a matter of fact I don’t feel anything like 84 years old. …I don’t know why I don’t, but I don’t feel like an old man,” he said. The fact that people recognize him in the grocery store still leads him to believe he doesn’t look like an old man either.

This morning, Whitman spent time on the air for a Jacksonville radio station and he has gotten many inquiries since the news of his death circulated.

Great news for fans, and obviously Mr.Whitman! May you have many more years of great health and happiness!

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Gore Speaks Out on Gay Marriage

AL Gore:

"Gay men and women ought to have the same rights as heterosexual men and women -- to make contracts, to have hospital visiting rights, to join together in marriage, and I don't understand why it is considered by some people to be a threat to heterosexual marriage," he says on the video, which appears on his Current TV network. "Shouldn't we be promoting the kind of faithfulness and loyalty to ones partner regardless of sexual orientation?"

The leading Democratic presidential candidates have tiptoed up to, but not crossed, the line of support for same-sex marriage. All three support equal substantive rights for gay and lesbians couples but, for the most part, have tried to have it both ways on the issue.

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Iraq - The War Card

From: Public Integrity

President George W. Bush and seven of his administration's top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, about the national security threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Nearly five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.

On at least 532 separate occasions (in speeches, briefings, interviews, testimony, and the like), Bush and these three key officials, along with Secretary of State Colin Powell, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, and White House press secretaries Ari Fleischer and Scott McClellan, stated unequivocally that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (or was trying to produce or obtain them), links to Al Qaeda, or both. This concerted effort was the underpinning of the Bush administration's case for war.

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Let Sibel Edmonds speak!

Most Americans have never heard of Sibel Edmonds, and if the U.S. government has its way, they never will. The former FBI translator turned whistleblower tells a chilling story of corruption at Washington’s highest levels—sale of nuclear secrets, shielding of terrorist suspects, illegal arms transfers, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, espionage. She may be a first-rate fabulist, but Edmonds’s account is full of dates, places, and names. And if she is to be believed, a treasonous plot to embed moles in American military and nuclear installations and pass sensitive intelligence to Israeli, Pakistani, and Turkish sources was facilitated by figures in the upper echelons of the State and Defense Departments. Her charges could be easily confirmed or dismissed if classified government documents were made available to investigators.

Finish reading this eye-opening article here. And. . .don't be scared away by the source.

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See? McDonald's food WILL kill you!

An Olive Hill, Kentucky man narrowly avoided a "mac attack" in what police are describing as a conspiracy between the man's wife and her co-worker/lover at the local McDonald's. It seems that Patricia Renee Valandingham had tired of her husband and, in a mis-directed attempt to better herself, took up a romantic relationship with. . .a burger flipper.

Investigators say that the grill jockey, Christopher Stephens, attempted to poison a McChicken sandwich ordered by Valandingham's husband by pulling an eye drop bottle from his pocket filled with rat poison and putting the poison on the sandwich. Before the sandwich left the kitchen, however, a co-worker saw what happened, took the sandwich, and called police. Police say that it was likely that the co-worker saved Valandingham's husband life because there was probably a fatal dose on the sandwich.

Seeing as how his marriage was already deteriorating, Mr.Valandingham was likely already a "chicken choker". Fortunately enough for him, however, the term didn't become literally true and he was able to escape "fowl" play. . .

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Heath Ledger dies at 28

Heath Ledger was found dead in a New York City apartment today, from a possible drug overdose. The Australian actor was 28 years old. After appearing in television roles during the 1990s, Ledger developed a Hollywood career. He starred in both critical and financial successes, including The Patriot, Monster's Ball and Brokeback Mountain , and completed the role of The Joker in the forthcoming The Dark Knight.

"Heath Ledger was found dead at 3:26 pm this afternoon," a police spokesperson said, saying he was found in an apartment in the posh district of Soho. "We don't know the cause of the death."

The entertainment website TMZ said Heath was discovered "face down on the floor" adding that "law enforcement sources ... believe it was not a crime."

The New York Times said Ledger was discovered by the housekeeper and a masseuse who arrived in the afternoon for an appointment.

They knocked on the door, but "when no one answered, the housekeeper and the masseuse opened the bedroom and found Mr. Ledger naked and unconscious on a bed. They shook him, but he did not respond," the Times said.

Both the New York Times and TMZ quoted officials as saying pills were found near the body, but gave no further details.

According to the initial report, he was found "in an apartment in Manhattan owned by the actress Mary-Kate Olsen, according to the New York City police." The Times and other media corrected this Olsen error later.

Ledger is survived by his former fiancee Michelle Williams, and their two-year-old daughter, Matilda.

A Fan Montage

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Fred Thompson's Out

Not surprisingly, Fred Thompson ended his campaign for the presidency today, after a string of poor finishes in the early contests. His loss in South Carolina on Saturday effectively ended his chances of continuing on as a viable contender.

"Today, I have withdrawn my candidacy for president of the United States. I hope that my country and my party have benefited from our having made this effort," Thompson said in a statement.

Thompson has given no indication of endorsements of any of his fellow republicans at this time, however he did support John McCain in his 2000 run against Bush.

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Monday, January 21, 2008

Who's Hand?

I ran across this photograph earlier this evening with the query "who's hand is it?". My first and immediate guess was Keith Richards - I was shocked to find out the real answer to the question. Indeed, this celeb IS older than me, but not quite as old as Mr.Richards. Make your best guess, then click HERE for the answer. . .

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Clinton channels Cheney at MLK Tribute

Bill Clinton, extremely worn out from his exhausting schedule of trashing Obama, nodded off during a MLK tribute today at the Convent Avenue Baptist Church in Harlem:

The "first black president" dozed off during a remembrance for the "black prophet" after a week of attacking the "first viable black candidate for president". OH, the irony!

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Josh "W" Brolin?

Oliver Stone is set to to direct a film about the life and presidency of George W Bush, and he's selected Josh Brolin for the lead (Looks more like Jeb to ME). If financing for the film is agreed, it could begin shooting by April and be in cinemas in time for the US presidential election. In addition to volunteering as a sparring partner for heavyweights at the local gym, Brolin has began a strict regimen of heavy drinking and cocaine use in preparation for his upcoming role.

According to Stone:

"It's a behind-the-scenes approach, similar to 'Nixon', to give a sense of what it's like to be in his skin. But if 'Nixon' was a symphony, this is more like a chamber piece, and not as dark in tone. People have turned my political ideas into a cliché but that is superficial. I'm a dramatist who is interested in people, and I have empathy for Bush as a human being, much the same as I did for Castro, Nixon, Jim Morrison, Jim Garrison and Alexander the Great."

Sources tell us that "The Decider", while not entirely displeased with the casting, was holding out hope for an actor who often portrayed the same characters in film that Bush channels in his "leadership" style: Steve McQueen. Perhaps there's room for both actors - one as a younger Bush and one as a NutBush older Bush.

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Slim Whitman dies at 84

UPDATE!!! Mr.Whitman is still with us! Read the rest of this GREAT NEWS by clicking HERE!


Country artist Slim Whitman died today at the age of 84. Though he was once known as "America's Favorite Folksinger," Whitman achieved more fame in Europe than in the United States. Best remembered for his early-'50s hit singles like "Love Song of the Waterfall," "Indian Love Call," and "Singing Hills," he was an excellent yodeler known for singing mellow, romantic and clean-cut songs.

"Love Song of the Waterfall," which became his breakthrough hit, peaked at #10 on the country charts; the follow-up single, "Indian Love Call," made him a star, peaking at number two on the country charts and crossing over into the pop Top Ten. You may recall "Indian Love Call" actually saving the world in the 1996 movie "Mars Attacks!", where it proved fatal to the invading Martians.

Indian Love Call

Both sides of his next single -- "Keep It a Secret" / "My Heart Is Broken in Three" -- were also major hits and he continued to have a string of Top Ten hits into the mid-'50s, including "Tumbling Tumbleweeds," "Unchain My Heart," and "I'll Take You Home Again Kathleen." In 1965, he bounced back into the country Top Ten with "More Than Yesterday."

More Than Yesterday

For the next few years, he had a series of minor country hits, including "Rainbows Are Back in Style" (1968), "Happy Street" (1968) and "Tomorrow Never Comes" (1970). Throughout the early '70s, he continued to have minor hits, but in 1974, he retired from active recording. For his contribution to the recording industry, Whitman has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 1709 Vine Street. In 2003, Rob Zombie used his song "I Remember You" in his directoral debut House of 1000 Corpses.

I Remember You (Intro by Andy Kaufman)

Apparently there is still some mystery regarding whether Mr.Whitman has passed or not. The following was on Wikipedia earlier, but has since vanished. If I receive information that he still alive I will post a follow up/retraction:

Slim Whitman
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about a person who has recently died.
Some information, such as that pertaining to the circumstances of the person's death and surrounding events, may change rapidly as more facts become known. In the event that this article is disruptively edited following the death of the subject, please request administrator intervention at this noticeboard.

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A Question of Faith

Barack Obama is stepping up his effort to correct the misconception that he's a Muslim now that the presidential campaign has hit the Bible Belt.

At a rally to kick off a weeklong campaign for the South Carolina primary, Obama tried to set the record straight from an attack circulating widely on the Internet that is designed to play into prejudices against Muslims and fears of terrorism.

"I've been to the same church - the same Christian church - for almost 20 years," Obama said, stressing the word Christian and drawing cheers from the faithful in reply. "I was sworn in with my hand on the family Bible. Whenever I'm in the United States Senate, I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. So if you get some silly e-mail ... send it back to whoever sent it and tell them this is all crazy. Educate."Obama is referring to a debunked chain e-mail circulating widely on the Internet that suggests he is hiding his Islamic roots and may be a terrorist in disguise. It says he was sworn into the Senate on the Quran and turns his back on the flag during the pledge.

There are some truths in the e-mail's details. Obama's middle name is Hussein. His father and stepfather were Muslim. And he spent part of his childhood in Indonesia, a largely Muslim country. But he attended secular and Catholic schools, not a radical madrassa.His campaign has been pushing back against the false rumors all year. His aides decried an incorrect news report that Obama was educated in a Muslim madrassa and a section of his Web site is devoted to correct that and other false rumors circulating on the Internet.

But they are stepping up the effort now that the campaign has hit South Carolina and soon turns to other southern states where religion is so important to voters. The campaign distributed an open letter from seven Jewish senators this weekend condemning the attacks; aides are planning an event this week to respond directly to the e-mails; and campaign representatives blanketed South Carolina churches Sunday with literature that touted Obama's Christian faith. Obama adviser Steve Hildebrand said the campaign has organized "truth squads" made up of South Carolina supporters ready to defend Obama's record from any attacks made by the Clintons this week.

One piece features photos of Obama praying with the words "COMMITTED CHRISTIAN" in large letters across the middle. It says Obama will be a president "guided by his Christian faith" and includes a quote from him saying, "I believe in the power of prayer."A second piece, which like the first doesn't mention the Muslim rumor, includes photos of Obama with his family and a caption that says they are active members of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago. It explains how as a young man Obama "felt a beckoning of the spirit and accepted Jesus Christ into his life."

Obama site responding to Internet rumors about his faith.

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