February 2009
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Day February 25, 2009

Siege of Leningrad Blockade Now and Then Photos

Fascinating take on now and then photos.

Douchiest Blog Post of the Year So Far

Stay classy Geekologie.

“Dear President Obama”: The President Reads 10 Letters a Day from the Public, With Policy Ramifications

From Political Punch:

Every day President Barack Obama is handed a special purple folder. The folder contains ten letters, and every day President Obama takes time to read them.

Are they from world leaders? From members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff? Members of the intelligence community?

No, these letters have been culled from the thousands the White House Correspondence Office receives each day from Americans who have taken the time to sit down and write to their president.

“They help him focus on the real problems people are facing,” says Axelrod. “He really a absorbs these letters, and often shares then with us.”

In his first week in office, President Obama requested that he see 10 letters a day “representative of people’s concerns, from people writing into the president,” recalls Gibbs, “to help get him outside of the bubble, to get more than just the information you get as an elected official.”

Jenny Haniver

Not a who but a what:

A Jenny Haniver is the carcass of a ray or a skate which has been modified and subsequently dried, resulting in a grotesque preserved specimen.

One suggestion for the origin of the term was “jeune d’Anvers” (French for Antwerp is Anvers), that is “young girl of Antwerp.” British sailors “cockneyed” this description into the personal name “Jenny Hanvers.”

For centuries, sailors sat on the Antwerp docks and carved these “mermaids” out of dried cuttlefish. They then preserved them further with a coat of varnish. They supported themselves by selling their artistic creations to working sailors as well as to tourists visiting the docks.

Bobby Jindal Will Exorcise You and Everyone You Love

I admit, I didn’t know much about Bobby Jindal before last night. The more I find out, the more I like about this guy. Here’s his description of participating in an exorcism:

Strangely, I found myself repeating the Hail Mary until it became a chant. Being a recent convert to Catholicism, I had yet to accept the Catholic doc­trines concerning Mary and considered any form of Marian devotion to be idolatry. Though I had never before prayed a Hail Mary in my life, I suddenly found myself incapable of any other form of prayer. Somehow, Mary’s intercessions allowed me to find peace during that long night; I knew that I had sur­vived the worst and that I would exit with my faith intact. It terrified me to recall how close I came to turning away from Christ out of fear.

The crucifix had a calming effect on Susan, and her sister was soon brave enough to bring a Bible to her face. At first, Susan responded to biblical pas­sages with curses and profanities. Mixed in with her vile attacks were short and desperate pleas for help. In the same breath that she attacked Christ, the Bible’s authenticity, and everyone assembled in prayer, Susan would suddenly urge us to rescue her. It appeared as if we were observing a tremendous battle between the Susan we knew and loved and some strange evil force. But the momentum had shifted and we now sensed that victory was at hand.

The campaign slogans write themselves!

Wingnut Mythology

From Atrios:

I’ve written before that I think part of the problem that conservatives/Republicans face is that their mythology has become a bit too complex for mere mortals (people who don’t listen to Limbaugh and read The Corner obsessively) to comprehend. They reference rogues’ gallery of enemies and various “bad things” that most people have never heard of. Simply trying to navigate through the various wingnutty minefields while throwing out the appropriate red meat has become difficult to do, and the result is incomprehensible to most of the country.

Volcano monitoring! High speed rail!

A Cat’s Breaking Point

Wait for it.

Daruma-otoshi Skyscraper Demolition

BREAKING: OBAMA NOT ELIGIBLE TO BE PRESIDENT

From World Net Daily:

WASHINGTON – A U.S. senator has weighed in on the continuing controversy over Barack Obama’s eligibility for office by saying he has never seen proof the new president was actually born in Hawaii.

“Well, his father was Kenyan and they said he was born in Hawaii, but I haven’t seen any birth certificate,” Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., told constituents in Cullman County. “You have to be born in America to be president.”

Developing…

Bank Fees Charged To Unemployed Workers

Anybody have any experiences with this happening:

Talk about kicking people when they are down. Recent news reports have shed light on several large banks charging bank fees to customers for the privilege of accessing their unemployment benefits.

Many states are partnering with banks to issue funds on a prepaid debit card, rather than cutting paper checks, in an effort to reduce costs. The problem is, banks are then turning around and hitting unemployed workers with fees for everything from accessing their money to calling for balance inquiries.


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