Archive for ‘Science’

February 21, 2012

The Republican Mandate: Ultrasounds For Women Seeking an Abortion!

by Ben Hoffman

A bill requiring a woman to get an ultrasound before having an abortion is poised to pass Virginia’s legislature this week, placing it on track to be signed into law by Gov. Bob McDonnell.

The bill, which could pass the Republican-led House of Delegates as early as Tuesday, is one of the stronger ultrasound laws passed by states in recent years. If it is adopted, Virginia will become the eighth state to require ultrasounds before abortions, a rule that anti-abortion forces hope will cause some women to change their minds but that women’s advocates call an effort to shame women and interfere with their privacy. The Senate, which is split evenly along party lines, narrowly adopted the bill this month.

Source

Talk about big government! An ultrasound can cost upwards of $1000. So who foots the bill for this procedure? What if the woman can’t afford an ultrasound… Does that mean she can’t have an abortion? Anybody with answers to these questions, please reply.

February 10, 2012

Religious Nuts Win; Women Now Have To Pay For Their Birth Control

by Ben Hoffman

Crazy F*cks In Silly Costumes

WASHINGTON—The Obama administration, seeking to rein in a runaway political furor over birth control and religious liberty, is set to announce a possible compromise on Friday that is meant to calm ire from the right about a new administration rule that would require health insurance plans — including those offered by Roman Catholic hospitals, universities and charities — to offer free birth control to female employees.

Source

These crazy f*cks have far too much power.

February 7, 2012

The Power Of Social Media: Karen Handel Resigns from Komen for the Cure!

by Ben Hoffman

Dumb and Dumber

Karen Handel, the former GOP candidate for governor, just announced her resignation as a senior vice president for public of Susan G. Komen for the Cure – one week after the breast cancer charity reversed itself on a decision to sever financial ties with Planned Parenthood.

Below is the letter. Note that Handel says she is declining the offer of a severance package from Komen — which might have required her to keep silent. She’s got a session with reporters this afternoon in Atlanta.

Source

Maybe next time Komen will hire someone with a college degree.

February 6, 2012

Saul Alinsky: a Great Man

by Ben Hoffman

But just who was Alinsky, really? Born in 1909, in the ghetto of Chicago’s South Side, he saw the worst of poverty and felt the ethnic prejudices that fester, then blast into violence when people are crowded into tenements and have too little to eat. He came to believe that working people, poor people, put down and stepped upon, had to organize if they were going to clean up the slums, fight the corruption that exploited them, and get a handhold on the first rung of the ladder up and out.

He became a protégé of labor leader John L. Lewis and took the principles of organizing into the streets, first in his hometown of Chicago, then across the country, showing citizens how to band together and non-violently fight for their rights, then training others to follow in his shoes. Along the way, Alinsky faced down the hatred of establishment politicians, attacks both verbal and physical, and jail time.

He was a gutsy guy. Outspoken, confrontational, profane with a caustic wit, one journalist said he looked like an accountant and talked like a stevedore. He had a flair for the dramatic, once sending a neighborhood to dump its trash on the front step of an alderman who was allowing the garbage to pile up. Or immobilizing city hall, a department store or a stockholders meeting with a flood of demonstrators demanding justice.

Source

To right-wingers, he’s just another in a long list of people they’ve been told to hate. The Republican party is the party of fear, hatred, and ignorance. Their sordid history is so full of scoundrels that they have to fabricate heroes such as their version of Ronald Reagan, who bore little resemblance to the myth they’ve created of him.

February 2, 2012

Republicans Politicize Breast Cancer: Top Advisory Doctors Resign In Protest

by Ben Hoffman

Dr. Kathy Plesser, a Manhattan radiologist on the medical advisory board of Susan G. Komen for the Cure’s New York chapter, said she plans to resign from her position unless Komen reverses its decision to pull grant money from Planned Parenthood.

“I’m a physician and my interest is women’s health, and I am disturbed by Komen’s decision because I am a very strong advocate for serving under-served women,” Plesser told The Huffington Post. “Eliminating this funding will mean there’s no place for these women to go. Where are these women to go to have a mammography? Do they not deserve to have mammography?”

With her decision, Plesser joins Komen’s top public health official, Mollie Williams, and the executive director of Komen’s Los Angeles County chapter, Deb Anthony, both of whom also resigned in protest.

Susan G. Komen, the nation’s largest breast cancer charity, announced on Tuesday that it had adopted a new rule against partnering with organizations that are under investigation, and that it would therefore sever ties with Planned Parenthood, which is currently under investigation in Congress. The groups that prompted that investigation are anti-abortion advocacy organizations that have long criticized Planned Parenthood, primarily a women’s health and family planning organization, over the fact that some of its clinics offer abortions.

Read more…

We’re witnessing the return of McCarthyism.

January 20, 2012

14 Elements of Fascism

by Ben Hoffman

Dr. Lawrence Britt analyzed the following regimes: Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, Franco’s Spain, Salazar’s Portugal, Papadopoulos’s Greece, Pinochet’s Chile, and Suharto’s Indonesia. While, they constitute a mixed bag of national identities, cultures, developmental levels, and history, they all followed the fascist or protofascist model in obtaining, expanding, and maintaining power. Further, all these regimes have been overthrown, so a more or less complete picture of their basic characteristics and abuses is possible.

Analysis of these seven regimes reveals fourteen common threads that link them in recognizable patterns of national behavior and abuse of power. These basic characteristics are more prevalent and intense in some regimes than in others, but they all share at least some level of similarity.

  1. Powerful and continuing expressions of nationalism.
  2. Disdain for the importance of human rights.
  3. Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause.
  4. The supremacy of the military/avid militarism.
  5. Rampant sexism.
  6. A controlled mass media.
  7. Obsession with national security.
  8. Religion and ruling elite tied together.
  9. Power of corporations protected.
  10. Power of labor suppressed or eliminated.
  11. Disdain and suppression of intellectuals and the arts.
  12. Obsession with crime and punishment.
  13. Rampant cronyism and corruption.
  14. Fraudulent elections.

Source

December 31, 2011

2011 – Year in Review

by Ben Hoffman

In no particular order…

  • Japan tsunami and nuclear disaster killed nearly 20,000 people
  • Death of Dennis Ritchie. Ritchie created the “C” programming language around 1970 to rewrite the UNIX operating system. It made the porting of software to various platforms much easier than with assembly language. Most software is still written in C/C++ including Windows, Linux, UNIX, Mac OS X, MS Office, most browsers…
  • Death of Steve Jobs. A visionary who changed life for many with the iPad, iPhone, iPod, and many others.
  • Occupy Wall St. People around the world have been protesting the right-wing policies that have destroyed our economy and ruined countless lives. America finally got into the game.
  • Arab Spring. This year we saw the fall of the Tunisian, Libyan, and Egyptian governments. The fate of Syria is unknown with the government murdering 100s of protesters.
  • Tim Tebow mania. A mediocre quarterback gains legendary status because he’s a religious nut.
  • Killing of Osama Bin-Laden. Obama makes Republicans look bad by taking out the terrorist responsible for the 9/11/2001 attack. Republican tactic: bomb them into smithereens. Democratic tactic: use intelligence.
  • Withdrawal from Iraq. One of the biggest blunders in U.S. history ends with the withdrawal of our troops from Iraq. No one has been prosecuted for lying us into war, nor has there been a serious investigation into how we got it so wrong.
  • Space Shuttle program ends with final mission of Space Shuttle Atlantis. George W. Bush canceled the Space Shuttle replacement program as one of his first acts as president. Right-wingers blame Obmaa.
  • Christian terrorism in Norway leaves 76 children dead.
  • Consumer outrage stops BOfA credit card charges and Verizon fees. That’s evidence that we’re not powerless to fight abuse.
  • And the biggest news of 2011… I wrote 3 songs! For years I’ve wanted to try my hand at writing songs and finally did it. My next goal is to write a GOOD song. 🙂

I hope you all had a good year. We need to be more active in the upcoming election to win back the House from the radical right. Get involved in local elections. Expose Republicans for the SOBs they are.

Happy New Year!

December 27, 2011

A Cow Based Economics Lesson

by Ben Hoffman

SOCIALISM
You have 2 cows.
You give one to your neighbor.

COMMUNISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and gives you some milk.

FASCISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and sells you some milk.

NAZISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and shoots you.

BUREAUCRATISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both, shoots one, milks the other, and then throws the milk away.

TRADITIONAL CAPITALISM
You have two cows.
You sell one and buy a bull.
Your herd multiplies, and the economy grows.
You sell them and retire on the income.

ROYAL BANK OF SCOTLAND (VENTURE) CAPITALISM
You have two cows.
You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, then execute a debt/equity swap with an associated general offer so that you get all four cows back, with a tax exemption for five cows.
The milk rights of the six cows are transferred via an intermediary to a Cayman Island Company secretly owned by the majority shareholder who sells the rights to all seven cows back to your listed company.
The annual report says the company owns eight cows, with an option on one more.
You sell one cow to buy a new president of the United States , leaving you with nine cows.
No balance sheet provided with the release.
The public then buys your bull.

SURREALISM
You have two giraffes.
The government requires you to take harmonica lessons.

AN AMERICAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows.
Later, you hire a consultant to analyze why the cow has dropped dead.

A FRENCH CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You go on strike, organize a riot, and block the roads, because you
want three cows.

A JAPANESE CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk.
You then create a clever cow cartoon image called a Cowkimona and market it worldwide.

AN ITALIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows, but you don’t know where they are.
You decide to have lunch.

A SWISS CORPORATION
You have 5000 cows. None of them belong to you.
You charge the owners for storing them.

A CHINESE CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You have 300 people milking them.
You claim that you have full employment, and high bovine productivity.
You arrest the newsman who reported the real situation.

AN INDIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You worship them.

A BRITISH CORPORATION
You have two cows.
Both are mad.

AN IRAQI CORPORATION
Everyone thinks you have lots of cows.
You tell them that you have none.
No-one believes you, so they bomb the ** out of you and invade your country.
You still have no cows, but at least you are now a Democracy.

AN AUSTRALIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
Business seems pretty good.
You close the office and go for a few beers to celebrate.

A NEW ZEALAND CORPORATION
You have two cows.
The one on the left looks very attractive.

Source

They forgot one…

CONSERVATIVE CAPITALISM
You have two cows.
The large U.S. milk corporations send its cows to China to be milked by slave wage workers.
You can’t compete, so you go out of business and get a job at Walmart.
Many people get sick and die after drinking Chinese milk contaminated with lead.

December 27, 2011

Things Conservatives Hate

by Ben Hoffman

Conservatives are not creators; they leave that up to the imaginary being in the sky. They do nothing but destroy. So I thought I’d make a list of things conservatives hate. (Feel free to add to this list.)

Things conservatives hate

  • High-speed rail transportation
  • Anything done that doesn’t make a profit
  • Green energy
  • Democrats
  • Barack Obama
  • Democracy in the United States (because sometimes the other party gets elected)
  • Tax cuts when proposed by Democrats (the Stimulus was 1/3 tax cuts)
  • Atheists
  • Gays (unless they’re self-hating gays like Larry Craig)
  • Legitimate economists (because they always contradict the conservative ideology)
  • Being told they have to buy insurance, even if they already have insurance (they just don’t like being told to do it)
  • Higher education (only the elite should be educated)
  • Science (it’s too hard)
  • Taxes. They’d rather see our infrastructure crumble than have to pay taxes (this would be number 1 if these were in order)
  • Not being at war (Conservatives love to bomb other countries where they get to destroy all sorts of things)
  • Publicly funded art projects
  • Publicly funded TV and radio programs
  • Social Security (unless they’re old enough to collect)
  • Medicare (unless they’re old enough or disabled so they can collect)
  • Any news outlet that doesn’t spin the news to the right
  • Regulation that restricts pollution
  • The environment (unless it involves property where they get to kill animals)
  • The minimum wage ($3 a day is plenty for workers like they’re paid in China)
  • Communism or socialism (unless it’s in other countries where U.S. corporations can exploit their workers)
December 26, 2011

A World Without Religion

by Ben Hoffman

Isn’t it time we stopped believing in these children’s fairy tails and started embracing science? Religion is responsible for most of the pain and suffering in the world. We were attacked in 2001 by right-wing religious fanatics.

“I believe today that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty. […] Only He can relieve me of this duty Who called me to it. It was in the hand of Providence to snuff me out by the bomb that exploded only one and a half meters from me on July 20, and thus to terminate my life’s work. That the Almighty protected me on that day I consider a renewed affirmation of the task entrusted to me…”
~ Adolf Hitler

Hitler referenced God in every one of his speeches. He used religion to gain power and to reign terror throughout the world.

Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.
~ Steven Weinberg

December 21, 2011

The Origins Of Christmas

by Ben Hoffman

December 20, 2011

Republicans Block Tax Cut – Right-wingers Waiting To Be Told What To Think About It

by Ben Hoffman

Right-winger's Head Explodes

WASHINGTON — House Republicans on Tuesday rejected a Senate bill that would have prevented a payroll tax cut from expiring on New Year’s Day, saying they wanted a year-long extension or no extension at all.

House Republicans accomplished that with a convoluted motion to reject a Senate compromise that would have extended the 2 percent payroll tax break for two months, voting 229 to 193 to send the measure to a conference committee.

Seven Republicans voted with Democrats, and no Democrats crossed the aisle. They were Reps. Charles Bass (R-N.H.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.), Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-Wash.), Tim Johnson (R-Ill.), Walter Jones (R-N.C.) and Frank Wolf (R-Va.).

Read more…

Yep, the world of right-wingers has been turned upside down. For decades, they’ve been told to believe that tax cuts are the answer to everything, and now their party has blocked a tax cut, simply because it was proposed by Democrats. So now they’re waiting to be told how to react. Conservatives have difficulty handling ambiguity and this contradicts the basic tenets of conservatism, which is: tax cuts = good, regulation = bad. It’s only a matter of time before some right-winger’s head explodes.

December 16, 2011

Republicans Lying About Number Of Jobs To Be Created From Keystone Pipeline

by Ben Hoffman

Advocates of the pipeline have pressed the case that thousands of shovel-ready jobs are being delayed by the administration’s inaction, with House Republicans including a shortened timeline for a permit in legislation extending the payroll tax cut.

By some accounts, the number of jobs that would be created could be as many as 150,000. But the State Department in August put the number of construction jobs at just 5,000 to 6,000.

TransCanada’s initial estimate of 20,000 — which it said includes 13,000 direct construction jobs and 7,000 jobs among supply manufacturers — has been widely quoted by lawmakers and presidential candidates.

[TransCanada chief executive Russ] Girling said Friday that the 13,000 figure was “one person, one year,” meaning that if the construction jobs lasted two years, the number of people employed in each of the two years would be 6,500. That brings the company’s number closer to the State Department’s; State says the project would create 5,000 to 6,000 construction jobs, a figure that was calculated by its contractor Cardno Entrix.

Opponents and proponents of the project have also disagreed over whether as many as 7,000 indirect supply chain jobs will be created. (That’s the rest of TransCanada’s 20,000 figure.) Much of that figure depends on where steel pipe will be fabricated, with opponents claiming that many of the jobs will actually be outside the United States.

But the biggest stretch in all of these figures is the biggest number: the 118,000 “spin-off” jobs that supposedly would be created from building the pipeline.

Among the list of jobs that would be created: 51 dancers and choreographers, 138 dentists, 176 dental hygienists, 100 librarians, 510 bread bakers, 448 clergy, 154 stenographers, 865 hairdressers, 136 manicurists, 110 shampooers, 65 farmers, and (our favorite) 1,714 bartenders.

Read more…

They forgot all the jobs created if the pipeline bursts and there’s a huge environmental disaster. That will create jobs for cleanup crews, environmental engineers, lawyers… These cleanups are paid mostly with government funding, though, which means socialism. So the Republicans are pushing for a socialistic program by mandating the approval of the pipeline.

The Republican’s plan to stimulate the economy is to allow corporations to pollute the environment and to fire government workers. That’s not going to work in our universe, but Republicans seem to live in some alternate reality.

December 13, 2011

Obama Fed Up After Giving in to Republican Demands

by Ben Hoffman

December 8, 2011

The Problem With Believing In God and Jesus

by Ben Hoffman

People who have the ability to believe in the supernatural have defective brains. They believe in things that defy logic. That’s why you have all these right-wingers who believe the $800 billion Stimulus caused the federal debt to increase by $5 trillion. They can’t process information like rational people. They’re exposed to little soundbites of information and whatever fits the Republican narrative, that’s what they believe.