Saturday, July 28, 2012

Movie Massacre Fallout: copycat says he’s the Joker, Billboard compares Obama to Colorado shooter

Does billboard comparing Obama to alleged shooter go too far?

We’re going to be hearing a lot of things about that terrible massacre in Aurora for quite awhile.

There’s already a trickle-down effect that’s resulted in the next two stories.

This Sunday’s AS IT STANDS - in The Times-Standard - takes a look at the tragedy in Colorado and comes to a grim conclusion.

See ya there. 

                      Idaho billboard compares Obama to Colorado theater shooting suspect

"Offensive." "Abhorrent." "Pathetic." Words like that are being used to describe a billboard in Caldwell, Idaho, that compares President Barack Obama — unfavorably — to James Eagan Holmes, the suspect in the shooting deaths of 12 people in a Colorado movie theater last week.

The sign features photos of Holmes and Obama side by side. Of Holmes, it says: "Kills 12 in a movie theater with assault rifle, everyone freaks out." Of Obama, it says: "Kills thousands with foreign policy, wins Nobel Peace Prize."

The electronic billboard often blares anti-Obama messages, but this one struck people as especially insensitive. It's the work of supporters of the late Ralph Smeed, for many years a lightning-rod activist for libertarian causes in Idaho, The Idaho Statesman of Boise reported.

"This billboard is offensive to all those lives lost and affected by the shooting," wrote a commenter on the Facebook page of KBOI-TV of Boise, which first reported the story. "Just pathetic, even if this is their expression of the 1st amendment." Read the full story at KBOI-TV

 Maryland man found with dozens of weapons, says he's the Joker

Updated at 6:37 p.m. ET: Police detained a Maryland man and recovered numerous guns from a home Thursday night after he allegedly made threats referring to the Joker this week.

Julie Parker, a spokeswoman for the Prince George's County police, said Friday that authorities had "thwarted a terrorist threat."

Prince George's County Police Chief Mark Magaw said the man, whom authorities identified as Neil Edwin Prescott, 28, of Crofton, Md., made a threat toward his employer, Pitney Bowes, in two phone calls to his supervisor Monday. Prescott was upset about losing his job and said: "I am the real Joker, and I'm going to blow everyone up," McGaw said.

Prescott was fired from his job as a subcontractor at Pitney Bowes, an office supply company, on an unrelated matter, the company said.

Magaw said police took the threats very seriously "in light of what happened in Aurora" — a reference to the shooting deaths last week of 12 people in Aurora, Colo., at a screening of "Batman: The Dark Knight Rises." The suspect in that shooting, James Eagan Holmes,  reportedly told police "I am the Joker" after he was arrested.

A police database showed that Prescott had 13 guns registered in his name. Officers from the Anne Arundel County police, the Prince George's County police and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives obtained a warrant and searched his home in Crofton, about 25 miles from Washington, on Thursday night.

Police evacuated part of the apartment building and took Prescott into custody without incident, they said. He hasn't been charged and was undergoing a medical evaluation Friday at the Anne Arundel County Medical Center.” (source)

Desperate Diets: Woman starves to death on sunlight-only diet

A woman raising her hands toward the sun. (© Dave and Les Jacobs/Blend Images/Corbis)

          Good Day Humboldt County!

 I’ve heard about, and witnessed people, who have gone on extreme diets for decades. I think this is the first time I’ve heard of a Sunlight Only diet, but for obvious reasons it isn’t going to go mainstream.

At least not with sane people.

Nevertheless, it highlights something deeper…and that’s how many people can be deceived by so- called holy men, or ascetics. Like it or not, we are humans and require food and water. Frankly, I’ve never had a problem with that.

  “A Swiss woman managed to starve herself to death after trying to follow a sunlight-only diet, after watching a documentary of an Indian guru who claimed to live this way for 70 years.

Well, someone was lying and, no offense gurus, but obviously you CANNOT live on just sunlight alone. If you don't believe that, then look into the millions of people who die of starvation and thirst every year. Unfortunately, wanna-be ascetics have been dying of an inability to put two and two (food + water = alive!) together in Germany, Britain and Australia according to the Swiss paper Tages-Anzeiger, but for this woman to starve in Switzerland, home to some of the best cheese and chocolate in the world, just seems exceptionally unnecessary.”(Source)

Time for me to walk on down the road….

Friday, July 27, 2012

Here’s the Top 10 Best Book Blogs for History Buffs – I think you’ll like them

As a history student, or someone who’s just interested in sneaking in a couple of history courses amongst your already packed schedule, you’re probably a voracious reader, independent thinker, and someone who’s constantly on the lookout for information that can help you with your research.

If you’re tired of visiting the library and sticking to official reading lists provided by your professors, try directing yourself to these book blogs that offer up all kinds of insight for history buffs, including book reviews and recommendations, military history books, books that deal with history and culture, and more.

Follow these book blogs to gain insight into the book industry, private lives of authors, and the environments, situations and cultures that impacted their writing.

  1. Maud Newton Blog: This blog comments on the book industry and shares news, quotes and other information highlighting the motives of authors.
  2. Paper Cuts: The New York Times book blog is a great resource for discovering new authors and learning about the latest releases.
  3. Biblio: Read Biblio for posts about publishing, reading lists, banned books, literacy, and more.
  4. Reading Copy Book Blog: Learn about authors and author trivia here.
  5. Mercurius Politicus: This blog is all about the early modern book industry.
  6. Joshua Harmon: This blogger takes a look at the publishing industry.
  7. Guardian Books: The Guardian’s book blog has a solid archive of history books.
  8. PhiloBiblos: This blog comes from a reference librarian who loves talking about used books, library archives, book history and more.
  9. Inside Google Books: The Google Books blog can help you with research tips and tricks.
  10. Lisa Gold: Research Maven: Lisa Gold shares research tips while writing about.
Want to see 90 more great blogs? No problemgo here.

What Some State Mottos Should Really be...

              Good Day Humboldt County!

For a little change of pace I thought I’d pass on what some state mottos should be. I’m just feeling ornery today:

ALABAMA: Literacy Ain't Everything

ARKANSAS: At Least We're not Oklahoma

ILLINOIS: Gateway to Iowa

FLORIDA: The Gunshine State

KENTUCKY:Tobacco is a Vegetable

MAINE: For Sale

MONTANA: Land of the Big Sky, and Very Little Else

NEW JERSEY: You Have the Right to Remain Silent, You Have the Right to an Attorney

NEW MEXICO: Lizards Make Excellent Pets

NORTH CAROLINA: Five Million People; Fifteen Last Names

OHIO: Don't Judge us by Cleveland

PENNSYLVANIA: Cook with Coal

SOUTH DAKOTA: Closer than North Dakota

TENNESSEE: The Educashun State

TEXAS:Si Habla Ingles

UTAH: Our Jesus is Better than Your Jesus

ARIZONA: But it's a dry heat, I tell ya!

WEST VIRGINIA: We're all related

 MASSACHUSETTS: Chappaquidick...'nuff said

NEVADA:Lose Your Money and Leave

RHODE Island: Too Small to Care About

OKLAHOMA:50th Most Visited State!

HAWAII:We're All Tanned and Healthy and You're Fat and Dying!

VERMONT: Quaint and Cold

DELAWARE: No One Knows We Exist

IDAHO: Enough About the Damn Potatoes!

D.C.: Now With Fewer Murders Than New Orleans

LOUISIANA State Joke: Men Working

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Did Tweets fall victim to another ‘cascading bug’? Twitter tries to fix the problem today

While some Twitter users reported intermittent updates via TweetDeck dashboard applications, the short-message website was down for many late Thursday morning. Twitter acknowledged the outage via it's status blog shortly before noon ET, with this brief statement.:

Users may be experiencing issues accessing Twitter. Our engineers are currently working to resolve the issue.”

Despite an update that followed soon after Twitter's original post, that the "issue has been stabilized and all services are restored," many were still unable to access the site. Further, the status website Down For Everyone or Just Me, reported that Twitter was still down.

Twitter's update has since been removed from the Twitter status blog.

Update: 12:12 pm ET: Twitter spokesperson Rachel Bremmer told the Associated Press that, "we're aware of the issue and are looking into it," but did not comment on the nature of the problem.

Twitter's last  outage occurred just over a month ago on June 21, and lasted nearly two hours. The site attributed the outage to a "cascading bug."

Another ‘Bath Salt’ Assault: New Mom Goes Ballistic in Maternity Ward

UPDATECarla Murphy  BELOW 2:24 PST

               Good Day Humboldt County!

Not too long ago the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially confirmed that the recent spate of cannibalistic acts should not be seen as the beginning of a zombie apocalypse.

I got a good laugh at that announcement. “How stupid can people be?” I wondered. Then the stories started coming out about flesh-eating in connection to the bath salts.

When I first wrote about “bath salts” -

          Ivory Wave Hits American Shores

- these attacks were not happening. Since then they seem to be popping up fairly often in the news. Eerie. Weird. Odd. Bizarre. What’s up?

It appears people get so hot they strip their clothes off after snorting the bath salts, but the weirdest part is the desire to eat flash while flipping out! I just don’t see the connection there, but then perhaps that’s why the CDC put out the Zombie alert!

            Another mom abuses bath salts, strips and goes ballistic in maternity ward

The summer of naked bath salts-induced attacks continues apace. The latest abuser of the powerful hallucinogen was a brand-new mother in Altoona, Pa., who couldn’t wait until she had left the maternity ward to smoke a dose, strip naked, and embark on a violent rampage.

The Altoona Mirror reports that on June 17, two days after giving birth, 31-year-old Carla Murphy was found by a nurse rolling around on a shower floor naked and confused. When roused, Murphy sprung into frenetic action, taking off down the hall, screaming profanities and kicking and punching whoever crossed her path.” (Source)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

UPDATE 2:24 PST Nationwide raids on synthetic drug labs lead to 90 arrests, seizure of $36 million

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The first nationwide raid ever of synthetic drugs happened today.

                                                                                     Related Articles:

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

I went to court the other day…it was a very touching experience

7 24 12 029 486415_3968683348818_1908315801_n[1]My wife and I had the honor of watching our good friends adopt the sweetest little girl in the world… Emily!

The Judge was great with Emily. At one point he asked her if it would be okay if they adopted her, and she gave a big resounding…YES! Those in attendance had misty eyes watching her give a cupcake to the Judge after the decision was rendered final. It was the first time I’ve seen an adoption become official, and I found it to be very touching and a happy experience.

 Adoption 040 Adoption 067

War on Marijuana: LA City Council votes to ban marijuana shops

    Good Day Humboldt County!

Our neighbors to the south are set to have a hard time in the days ahead as the never-ending war on Marijuana adds another shameful chapter.

State laws continue to be flouted with impunity by the Feds who have been busy busting people in the Southern Humboldt area lately.

Perhaps some day the voters of California will get what they voted for back in 1995. That won’t happen however, until president Obama decides to keep his campaign promise from the last election.

The Associated press reports: 

Unable to rein in hundreds of medical pot shops that blossomed around the nation's second-biggest metropolis, the Los Angeles City Council banned them Tuesday until the state's highest court weighs in. The 14-0 vote drew an angry, profanity-laced response from some medical marijuana advocates who attended the council meeting.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was prepared to sign the ordinance, according to his spokeswoman, Vicki Curry. The storefront ban would then go into effect after 30 days. In the interim, letters will be sent to as many as 900 dispensaries advising them of the ban.

The city has fumbled with its medical marijuana laws for years, trying to provide safe and affordable access to the drug for legitimate patients while addressing worries by neighborhood groups that streets were being overrun by dispensaries and pot users.

"Relief is on the way," said Councilman Jose Huizar, who introduced the so-called "gentle ban." Many cities have struggled with medical marijuana ordinances, but none has had a bigger problem than Los Angeles, where pot shops have proliferated. At one point, the city ordered closure of the shops — a process that failed amid lawsuits and conflicting rulings by appellate courts.

This time around, the city has a stronger case if faced with lawsuits by pot shop owners, city officials said. A recent appellate court ruling seems to support the new ordinance that refers to a marijuana collective as three or fewer people.

The ban also allows hospices and home health agencies to provide medical pot. "A judge could file an injunction but we think that is unlikely," said Jane Usher, a special assistant city attorney.

The ban comes during a confusing time for Californians — despite voter approval in 1996 for medicinal use of marijuana with a doctor's recommendation. The state Supreme Court has decided to clarify marijuana's hazy legal status by addressing whether local governments can ban medical marijuana clinics. But a hearing has yet to be set by the high court.

Meanwhile, U.S. authorities have cracked down on pot clinics around the state, saying such operations remain illegal under federal law.” (Read the rest here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Eternal Fires? The Door To Hell Can Be Found in Derweze, Turkmenistan

          Good Day Humboldt County!

  Hell on earth.

  It’s hell dealing with cranky people all day.

  Go to hell. Hell’s bells! The hell of it is, I had fun. Oh…hell!

  We use the word so often in public, hell is like saying… hello.

No one raises an eyebrow if you say hell nowadays. Once upon a time this wasn’t true.

Hell was a bad word.

The subject only came up if you were in fear of going there, or were offering to give someone hell for whatever reason. 

In many religious traditions, hell is a place of suffering and punishment in an afterlife, often after resurrection.

 Religions with a linear divine history often depict hells as endless.

Religions with a cyclic history often depict a hell as an intermediary period between incarnations.

Typically these traditions locate hell under the Earth's external surface and often include entrances to Hell from the land of the living.

Other afterlife destinations include Heaven, Purgatory, Paradise, and Limbo.

Other traditions, which do not conceive of the afterlife as a place of punishment or reward, merely describe hell as an abode of the dead, a neutral place located under the surface of Earth (for example, see sheol and Hades).

Modern understandings of hells often depict them abstractly, as a state of loss rather than as fiery torture literally underground, but this view of the concept of a hell can, in fact, be traced back into the ancient and medieval periods as well.

Hell is sometimes portrayed as populated with demons who torment those dwelling there.

Many are ruled by a death god such as Nergal, Hades, Enma or the Christian and Islamic Devil (Satan or Sheitan, otherwise known as the fallen angel Lucifer or Iblis).

In Islam, the Devil does not actually reside in Hell.

Hell appears in several mythologies and religions.

It is commonly inhabited by demons and the souls of dead people.

A fable about hell which recurs in folklore across several cultures is the allegory of the long spoons.

 Hell is often depicted in art and literature, perhaps most famously in Dante's Divine Comedy.

Photos with Text Via BoxNut

Monday, July 23, 2012

"Dramatic" New Maya Temple Found, Covered With Giant Faces

A mask depicts a sun god in the guise of a shark.

Some 1,600 years ago, the Temple of the Night Sun was a blood-red beacon visible for miles and adorned with giant masks of the Maya sun god as a shark, blood drinker, and jaguar.

Long since lost to the Guatemalan jungle, the temple is finally showing its faces to archaeologists, and revealing new clues about the rivalrous kingdoms of the Maya.

The sides of the temple are decorated with 5-foot-tall (1.5-meter-tall) stucco masks showing the face of the sun god changing as he traverses the sky over the course of a day. Despite the obvious care that was taken to construct and preserve the newfound temple, it wasn't used for long. Evidence at the site suggests the building was abandoned sometime in the fifth century, for reasons unknown. (Source)

AS IT STANDS UNIQUE INDIVIDUALS: Part 2: 'Goat man' spotted in Utah mountains


I’ve been on the lookout lately for unique individuals and a man dressed like a goat, living with goats, definitely qualifies a s a unique individual.

“The sighting of a man dressed in a goat suit on a Utah mountain is causing concern among state wildlife officials, The Associated Press reported. Officials are worried about him getting shot when hunting season opens soon. The man, who remains unidentified, was spotted by photographer Coty Creighton on July 15 during a hike on Ben Lomond peak just north of Ogden in northern Utah.” (source)

PHOTO:The "goat man," in white, traverses an incline near Ogden, Utah, on July 15

                                                                  Coty Creighton / AP file

Why does the NRA get away with bullying Congress?

          Good Day Humboldt County!

Every time there’s a sensational shooting event in this country, like what recently happened in a movie theatre in Colorado, the NRA gears up and goes on the offensive by looking for anyone who dares to call for stricter gun laws.

They need not look far as articles like the following are popping up already:

The Aurora, Colorado massacre should spur commonsense restrictions on gun violence, such as reinstating the ban on assault weapons, limiting capacity of a magazine and microstamping ammo. But the gun lobby is too strong and it's an election year.

 When is enough, enough? Will Movie Massacre finally spur sensible gun control?

“When is enough, enough? Will the Movie Massacre finally spur sensible gun control? Not likely Certainly not in an election year.”


                                    The question is; WHY IS THE NRA SO POWERFUL?

The House of Representatives recently voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress, for withholding documents pertaining to the “Fast and Furious” program that allegedly put guns in the hands of Mexican drug gangs.

Seventeen Democrats voted for the measure after the National Rifle Association indicated future endorsements could ride on the vote. The NRA is considered by many the most powerful lobbying group in the country, despite relatively modest financial resources and just 4 million members.

                                              What makes the NRA so influential?

Focus and emotion. Groups with large constituencies often address a wide variety of issues. The AARP, for example, attempts to influence such diverse issues as Social Security, health care, energy, and ballot access laws.

The NRA focuses almost exclusively on gun control, which enables its leaders to doggedly pursue their legislative ends. Perhaps more important, many NRA members are as single-minded as the organization itself. Polls often show that more Americans favor tightening gun control laws than relaxing them, but gun rights advocates are much more likely to be single-issue voters than those on the other side of the question. As a result, the NRA can reliably deliver votes. Politicians also fear the activism of NRA members. They’re widely believed to be more likely to attend campaign events, ring doorbells, and make phone calls to help their favored candidates—or defeat their opponents—than senior citizens, members of labor unions, or public school teachers.” (Read more here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Sunday, July 22, 2012

AS IT STANDS: Presidential Candidates Should Wear Sponsorship Logos


                       By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
We live in the Age of Sponsorship, where everything is brought to you by someone trying to make a buck or a point.
Traditionally, NASCAR racing has been the standard for mixing advertiser sponsorship with the sport so the two are almost always mentioned in the same breath. For beer companies and auto related products like Edelbrock headers, it was always the best way to target advertising for maximum results.
Lately the beer companies and auto part sponsors have had to shift over and share sponsorships for NASCAR advertising. Companies like Tide Soap, Microsoft, Red Bull, M & Ms, and Oreo Cookies proudly sport their logos on the hoods and of top race cars, too.
Over the years, the practice has been so common, people accepted it and moved on. Sponsorship for sports teams and scholarships are ingrained into our society. Corporate sponsorship has been the trend in the last decade, as we see football stadiums and baseball fields nationwide re-named.
Some examples: Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts (NFL); Coors Field, home of the Denver Broncos (NFL); Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburg Steelers (NFL); and Energy Solutions Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah, which hosts indoor events from professional basketball to circus legends like Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey.
The deal goes like this; sponsorship is a cash and/or in-kind fee paid to a property (typically sports, but also arts, entertainment and causes), in return for access to the exploitable commercial potential associated with that property.

Let’s keep in mind the driving force of sponsorship is the expectation of a profitable return. In the simplest terms, it’s an investment that keeps on paying. Commercial sponsorship of stadiums, etc., are often limited in years (20 years is common), but contracts can be renewed.

The American public, having been slowly numbed over the years to commercial sponsorship, doesn’t even object to the idea anymore. There was a time when people shook their head sadly as the Los Angeles Lakers left The Great Western Forum and moved into the new mega arena called Staples Center.
Now, it’s time to discuss another aspect of sponsorship. One that has steadily slipped into our political system since Big Oil was in its infancy. It’s no secret our politicians often represent commercial interests.
If this news comes as a surprise, I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings. The fact is, there’s not a Congressman or State Governor in this nation who doesn’t get sponsorship support from special interests.

Most try to hide their illicit relationships with rhetoric and party lines. If you follow the money in any election, like our current Presidential election, you’ll see that the big players get donations from people who expect big returns.
  I’ve been thinking about this for some time. The solution is to level the playing field for voters by making candidates wear the logos of the corporations, groups, and companies, that support them.
I saw a funny photo-shopped picture on the internet a while back that gave me the idea. It showed the Supreme Court judges with logos (Shell Oil, etc.) stitched onto their black robes. That was pretty clever, and it made sense when I thought about it.

The names of big campaign donors - like the Koch brothers - could be listed on the back of the candidate’s shirt. The corporate logos could be fashionably arranged on the sleeves and fronts of shirts and jackets.
Meanwhile, I found an interesting blog called, What if politicians had to wear sponsorship logos? The creators of this website are keeping tabs on the cost of campaigning during the presidential election.
  If we could just get President Obama and soon-to-be Republican nominee, Mitt Romney to agree to wearing their sponsorship logos on their clothing, it would make the voters’ job a lot easier. We could draw up a pro and con list, compare logos, and make an informed decision on which one will screw us the least!
As It Stands, I know it’s a far cry from a major voting reform, but don’t you think this would be a step in the right direction?

GOP Governors Unite in Fight to Stop Unions in their States

Six Republican Governors have gathered to warn their residents against the evils of unionization which they claim would threaten their jobs...