Thank you, Aq Baron, whoever you are, for posting scanned images of the Mercury News police blotter for Atherton, CA--the town that lard built. It is famous today, by virtue of being the second most expensive city in America.
Here is at least a sampling of what was recently reported to the police:
Coghlan Lane, 7:33 p.m. Friday: A woman told police someone was at her door and that when she asked who it was, no one answered. Police responded and determine the stranger outside had delivered package (sic).
Heritage Court, 12:44 a.m. Thursday: A woman whose finger got stuck in a drain was reported to be conscious and breathing.
A look back at 2012 and a look forward at 2013.
There are two Americas.
Lev Vaidman is not a household name, but perhaps it should be. The Russian-born physicist at Tel Aviv University has demonstrated that teleportation (of photons, if not Star Fleet officers) is possible. His work has led to evidence of parallel universes. It has suggested that in the quantum world, time moves both backwards and forwards. And now, He might just guarantee the survival of Israel--in at least one parallel world.
WARNING: This article contains spoilers.
Television is American. It is as American as Apple pie. It may have once been the bastard step-child of the dramatic arts, but god dammit, it was our bastard step-child.
So how did the Danes get so damned good at making it?
The BBC Program Panorama featured an amazing episode on Homs. Sadly, Americans cannot watch it. Those of you outside the US can do so here. Reporter Paul Wood traveled three times to the city without the permission of the Regime. At one point, he had to follow a two-mile-long tunnel with a clearance of less than five feet to cross the front line.
Repression just got a little harder. Perhaps, it got a lot harder.
The highlights of this decade have been too few and too far between. The lowlights, on the other hand...
The singular, headline event of the decade can be traced back to the fabulous fifties and our cold-war efforts to keep the Commies away from the Persian gulf. Overthrowing the first democratic government in the Muslim world seemed so easy (and more importantly, so cheap) that the temptation to do it again would be too great. There followed a pattern of supporting short term economic and global political goals at the expense of the human and civil rights of Muslims. Sadly, America became a force for evil in that part of the world. Even after the Soviet threat to the region was on the wane and then gone, we continued to support the most repressive governments in the world in a short-sighted effort to keep the magic stuff flowing.
30 years ago, American conservatives were in the ascendancy. The devil-worshipping hippies were banished to the fringes of American culture, selling organic food and practicing yoga. The former liberal mainstream of the Democratic party had suffered the body blow of the Kennedy assassination and had seen their great society eaten alive by the war in Vietnam. Incredibly, they had escaped the shadow of Watergate and elected their most promising president in decades.
This week, Muntadar al-Zaidi, the Iraqi journalist who gave voice, or rather foot to all of our feelings when he hurled his shoes at Bush Jr. last year, finally had his day in court. Neo-con's always maintained that we were in Iraq in part to free the Iraqi people from the tyrannical rule of Saddam Hussein. Replacing him would be a democracy with respect for the rule of law, not the rule of him. Add yet another lie to the fire. Mr. al-Zaidi was sentenced to 3 years in prison for? Not his "attack" on Bush, but for embarrassing Prime Minister Nouri al-Malaki, who was standing beside Bush at the time.
Since Joe Hubris has been bush-free, he feels 100% better. He can think more clearly. His hair has stopped falling out. He's not bloated all the time. He's making healthier decisions at mealtime. Most importantly, He's been able to get off the oxy's.
When: January 20, 2009 (Inauguration Day Night)
For the first time since 1980, no Bush will hold high office in America. That's worthy of celebration.
From Nadir to Apex.
In 8 years, America has gone from its modern political low point to its high point. David Axelrod is the anti-Karl Rove. The debacle that was the 2000 race--that which seemed to so dominate our view of national politics has been washed away.
Also gone, is the Reagan era. Up until this year, the coalition that carried the Republicans in 1980 had held. Now, with Obama able to carry Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Nevada, Virginia and perhaps North Carolina, he and his campaign have created a new coalition. Unlike Reagan's which was white, this one is white, black and brown. Hispanics helped deliver Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico and look to be a permanent part of the new Democratic majority. McCain was unable to build on the progress that Bush made. In fact, the Republicans backslid.
I may or may not have heard of Professor Thomas Sowell prior to reading his column, "Ego and Mouth" on Realclearpolitics.com. The only ego on display here, appears to belong to Mr. Sowell.
Prof. Sowell begins his piece with the modest assertion that Obama's only qualifications are "ego and mouth." This despite his time as a Senator and his time in Illinois state politics as an elected representative of thousands of American citizens. He follows that up with the equally supportable contention that Obama has not acheived anything other than "cocksure confidence." And later, that he has "actually accomplished nothing." It seems like becoming the presidential nominee of the Democratic party is an achievement and perhaps also an accomplishment.
Things could not look worse for McCain. I've been trolling RealClearPolitics.com for any sign of life in his campaign and I do not see it. Of the 2000/2004 Bush states, 6 (with 72 electoral votes) are toss-ups; and 6 (with 58 electoral votes) are leaning or solid Obama. Of the 2000/2004 Kerry/Gore States, 0 are toss-ups and 0 are leaning or solid McCain. So that makes 130 electoral votes McCain has to somehow salvage between now and next Tuesday. All Obama has to do is pull out perhaps 2 of those states and protect the remaining Kerry/Gore states and he will have won.
The numbers for McCain are looking grimmer and grimmer. Yesterday's New York Times/CBS nationwide poll gave Obama 53%-McCain 39%. McCain only pulling 39 is just staggering to me. I'm pretty certain that this is the lowest a major-party candidate has pulled in the era of polling. I'm not sure how much lower he could go. Obama is ahead by 10 points in Virginia.
It raises the question: What if anything can save McCain? Three October Surprises come to mind.
1. Finding Osama.
What if they capture or kill Osama between now and election day? I think this could actually hurt McCain on two fronts. First, I think a lot of voters--especially independent voters--would be skeptical about the timing. Also, there could be a sense that "the war on terror is over". A sense that we don't need a president with foreign-policy expertise the way we did the day before.
After the free Springsteen concert on the Parkway yesterday, I stopped by a volunteer's table on Fairmount and after raiding his button pile, I asked him how things were going. He told me he was in charge of 2 wards and that in those 2 wards, they had 4000 new registers over the previous 5 weeks. He had personally registered 120 people in 12 hours over Friday and Saturday. Those numbers simply cannot be ignored--despite the fact that they aren't counted among surveys of likely voters.
If Pennsylvania was ever in play it is not now. I was thrilled to see Bruce (for free!) but was even more so to see him in Ohio today.
Comments to Joe Hubris.
Wow, what a week that passed. Washington Mutual is gone. The Administrations last big shot--the $700b bailout of America's finance machine appears to be on the road to approval. If there is nothing in place by tomorrow (Monday 9/29) will there be a massive sell-off?
In a building that once housed an ancient tavern, the Obama campaign has opened one of its field offices on East Girard. This is the same block as Ekta and only a block from Sketch, raising the question: has Obama's appeal extended to local gentrification? According to Aislin Thompson, a local volunteer, the office has had 534 volunteers walk through the door since it opened. She supported Clinton in the primaries. Now, she admits that that fact and her conversion give her an advantage when calling. She says any rift between Hilaristas and Obamanos is overplayed. "The real difference is between McCain and Obama." She says. This Monday afternoon, the office was populated by her and two very nice staffers from out of the area. The focus of this location, and perhaps the entire field operation is voter registration.