New and News, Part 6

Our catchall news topic now enters the 600 and something post total and counting..

Feel free to react to any or all news tidbits, especially those that dont have a discussion already in progress.

Carry On!
Original Post
NEWS JUST IS...(Reuters) - Warren Jeffs, the fugitive leader of a polygamist Mormon sect and one of the FBI's 10 most wanted, was arrested in a traffic stop outside Las Vegas, the Nevada Highway Patrol said on Tuesday.

Jeffs, 50, the leader of the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints, is wanted for the alleged sexual misconduct in Arizona. He is also wanted as an accomplice to rape in Utah.

Jeffs, whose group is estimated to have 10,000 followers, allegedly arranged marriages between older men and underage girls.
----------------
He is the 'leader' of this huge cult, i find it all rather fascinating as its HUGE $ making, lots of enslaved women and just a total cult like repression.
Sept. 11, 2006, 1:49PM
Anna Nicole Smith's son, 20, dies in Bahamas


By JESSICA ROBERTSON
Associated Press

NASSAU, Bahamas "” The 20-year-old son of Anna Nicole Smith has been found dead in the Bahamas, where the former reality TV star and Playboy playmate gave birth to a baby girl days earlier.

Authorities had not determined what caused the death of Daniel Wayne Smith, whose body was found Sunday morning, said Robin Bonnema, a spokeswoman for Trimspa, the diet products company that has been endorsed by Smith. Bonnema had no other details, and calls to Smith's lawyer, Howard K. Stern of Santa Monica, Calif., were not immediately returned.

Bonnema declined to provide details, saying only that Smith died "in his bed.".......
more-

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/4177561.html
From the BBC: Madrid Bans Malnutrition from Catwalk!

UN health experts recommend a BMI of between 18.5 and about 25, and some models may fall well below the minimum.

The Spanish Association of Fashion Designers has decided to ban models who have a BMI of less than 18.

Unhealthily skinny models at last year's fashion shows led to protests from doctors and women's rights groups.

The association agreed to use the BMI - a calculation based on height and weight - in response to local government pressure.

It suggests that 30% of would-be participants fail this test and this year's fashion week, which begins on 18 September, will offer medical treatment to excessively thin models.

Outrage

"The restrictions could be quite a shock to the fashion world at the beginning but I'm sure it's important as far as health is concerned," Leonor Perez Pita, director of the Madrid fashion show, was quoted as saying by Reuters news agency.

Madrid's local government says it wants to set a more positive, healthy image of beauty for teenagers to follow.

"Fashion is a mirror and many teenagers imitate what they see on the catwalk," said regional official Concha Guerra.

Spain's Anorexia and Bulimia Association says if designers refuse to follow these voluntary restrictions the government should legislate to ban thin models.

However, some sections of the fashion world have expressed outrage at the idea of weight restrictions.

Cathy Gould, of New York's Elite modelling agency, said the fashion industry was being used as a scapegoat for weight-related illnesses.

"I understand they want to set this tone of healthy beautiful women but what about discrimination against the model and what about the freedom of the designer?" she asked, adding that the careers of naturally "gazelle-like" models could be damaged.

Link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/5341202.stm

Personally, I'd like to ban bitches who can't walk. It drives me insane to watch a girl shuffle knock-kneed down the runway in a frock. For shame.
Ahhh. The passing of one of the best. She was such a firecracker. Probably spinning though at the W soundbites. He was so mean and nasty to her. I hope she sticks around and haunts the bastard.

The DNC speech she gave in '88 was the first political speech that really moved me to get active; led me to ActUP, Queer Nation, NOW.

Beams!



Former Texas Gov. Ann Richards dies

By KELLEY SHANNON, Associated Press Writer

AUSTIN, Texas - Former Gov. Ann Richards, the witty and flamboyant Democrat who went from homemaker to national political celebrity, died Wednesday night after a battle with cancer, a family spokeswoman said. She was 73.
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She died at home surrounded by her family, the spokeswoman said. Richards was found to have esophageal cancer in March and underwent chemotherapy treatments.

The silver-haired, silver-tongued Richards said she entered politics to help others "” especially women and minorities who were often ignored by Texas' male-dominated establishment.

"I did not want my tombstone to read, 'She kept a really clean house.' I think I'd like them to remember me by saying, 'She opened government to everyone,'" Richards said shortly before leaving office in January 1995.

Whether or not she succeeded at that, there was no question she cracked open the door.

Her single term as governor had ended in a 1994 defeat to George W. Bush, who went from besting his father's silver-haired critic to the governor's office to the presidency.

"Texas has lost one of its great daughters,"
President Bush said in statement after learning of Richards' death.

Two years before she was elected governor of Texas, Ann Richards electrified the 1988 Democratic National Convention with a keynote speech in which she joked that the Republican presidential nominee, George H.W. Bush, had been "born with a silver foot in his mouth."

A longtime champion of women and minorities in government who was serving at the time as Texas state treasurer, she won cheers when she reminded delegates that Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, "only backwards and in high heels."

As governor, Richards appointed the first black University of Texas regent, the first crime victim on the state Criminal Justice Board, the first disabled person on the human services board and the first teacher to lead the State Board of Education. Under Richards, the fabled Texas Rangers pinned stars on their first black and female officers.

Ron Kirk, the black former mayor of Dallas, said Richards helped him get his first political internship during a state constitutional convention in 1974 and later, as governor, made him secretary of state.

"She set the table so somebody like me could become mayor of Dallas," Kirk said.

She also polished Texas' image, courted movie producers, campaigned for the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico, oversaw a doubling of the state prison system and presided over rising student achievement scores and plunging dropout rates.

Throughout her years in office, her popularity remained high. One poll put it at over 60 percent the year she lost her re-election bid to Bush.

Republican Texas Gov. Rick Perry described Richards as "the epitome of Texas politics: a figure larger than life who had a gift for captivating the public with her great wit."

"Ann loved Texas, and Texans loved her," President Bush said. "As a public servant, she earned respect and admiration. Ann became a national role model, and her charm, wit and candor brought a refreshing vitality to public life."

U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (news, bio, voting record), R-Texas, said Richards never lost her zest for life.

"I wrote her a note when I heard about her cancer and she wrote me back a wonderful letter. She was upbeat and positive and I think she was going to go out with guns blazing," Hutchison said Wednesday night.

Richards was diagnosed with cancer in March and underwent chemotherapy treatments.

Her four adult children spent the day with her before she died Wednesday night at her home in Austin, said Cathy Bonner, a longtime family friend and family spokeswoman.

Born in Lakeview, Texas, in 1933, Richards grew up near Waco, married civil rights lawyer David Richards and spent her early adulthood volunteering in campaigns and raising four children. She often said the hardest job she ever had was as a public school teacher at Fulmore Junior High School in Austin.

In the early 1960s, she helped form the North Dallas Democratic Women, "basically to allow us to have something substantive to do; the regular Democratic Party and its organization was run by men who looked on women as little more than machine parts."

Richards served on the Travis County Commissioners Court in Austin for six years before jumping to a bigger arena in 1982 when her election as state treasurer made her the first woman elected statewide in nearly 50 years.

But politics took a toll. It cost her a marriage and forced her in 1980 to seek treatment for alcoholism.

"I had seen the very bottom of life," she once recalled. "I was so afraid I wouldn't be funny anymore. I just knew that I would lose my zaniness and my sense of humor. But I didn't. Recovery turned out to be a wonderful thing."

After her re-election defeat, Richards went on to give speeches, work as a commentator for Cable News Network and serve as a senior adviser in the New York office of Public Strategies.

In her last 10 years, Richards worked for many social causes and helped develop the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, scheduled to open in Austin in 2007.

Richards said she never missed being in public office. She grinned when asked what she might have done differently had she known she would be a one-term governor.

"Oh," she said, "I would probably have raised more hell."
I luv this article in the UK Daily Mail.. it's SO AbFab! It's so funny - if it weren't all true! Anyone else wanna join Class War with me?

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/femail/article.ht...id=1879&in_a_source=

Some tidbits -
Diary of a billion-heiress
Life of luxury: Yuki Oshima-Wilpon

Yuki's whole lifestyle is funded by her billionaire father, a Japanese financier.


MONDAY: 11.50am

One of my two protection officers, Richie, knocks on the bedroom door to wake me. Although I didn't go out last night, this is still fairly early for me. I normally get up at about 2pm if I've been to parties the night before. My left foot is still killing me.



5pm:
... I give shoe designer Jimmy Choo a call. We recently talked about creating an 'ethically friendly' range, ............. He's a lovely man and a fashion icon, and I'd love to be his muse.


2.30pm:
Eeek, am late for a meeting with my photographer. We're arranging to do a glamorous photoshoot "” not for the Press, just for me and my husband.


2am:
I decide the party isn't over and call up the Halkin Hotel in Belgravia to book their best suite so that everyone can carry on partying. It costs over £1,000, plus we get through 15 bottles of champagne, but we have a great night.



WEDNESDAY: Noon

Am dragged out of the Halkin Hotel, where I've been partying all morning, by my driver and protection p officer. The driver has been waiting for me since 7pm m last night and wants to go to bed. Get home and go straigh ht to bed myself - the joy of bei a rich socialite and not havin ng to work.


2pm:
Ugh, the doorbell wakes me. It's our organic shopping being delivered and food for our dog Billy. Bruce and I are vegetarian but we realise that is not fair for Billy.

Instead, we order organic chicken breast and the housekeeper cooks it for him daily with brown and white rice. He's quite fussy now and will eat only organic.

He's never been left alone in his life and a dog-sitter needs to be booked when we both go out. He's a privileged dog and has been flown around the world on private jets "” from Tokyo to Hawaii, New York to LA, Paris to London. He takes after his mother.


5pm:
I have to get up again because Stuart, my hairdresser, comes round to style my hair for an event tonight. .. I rarely make the effort to go to his salon now. There's no point when I can pay him £450 to come to me.


2am:
Not really in the mood to carry on - I'd much rather have a massage. I like my massages at random times of the night when I've come in from a heavy dancing session.

I have a great masseuse whom I can call any time, day or night, and she drops anything for me. So I wake her up and she comes over for a few hours. It's bliss.


THURSDAY: 1pm

Didn't get to sleep properly until about 8am after my massage, so I needed a lie-in. But I've got loads to do so I can't sleep in any more. Suzie comes round and helps me choose what to wear for the day.


Once again, I am a woman in demand, but as I'm wearing my new gold sequinned Gucci dress - one of the hottest dresses from their autumn/winter collection - I'm determined to make an entrance at as many parties as possible.

You never want to be wearing something that someone else will be wearing, but this dress - which cost £4,290 - is not even available yet, so I know I'm onto a winner.

..... relax with him and get a table in the VIP area. Have lots of champagne as my mouth is dry from drinking cheap cocktails.


FRIDAY: 10am

It's my housekeeper Angie's birthday today and she has asked for make-up. Bless her, she says she has never owned make-up before ...

.. Then I head to Boots in Knightsbridge and grab everything on the make-up shelves - one of every shade of lipstick, eyeshadow and nail vanish.
.... I tend to buy my own make-up from Harrods and Harvey Nicks

.....................................
And so it goes... Read the full article its a hoot!!! Sweetie dahling
I used to tend two midget dogs that lived on the 14th floor of a prewar building on 9th Street at 5th Avenue. Their transexual lesbian lingerie designer owner would be gone for a month at a time. The dogs would only eat broccoli fettucine from Balducci's. They used the livingroom for their toilet. We got $5,000 for the month.

Who needs to own it when you can babysit it.
Sisters are doing it for themselves! I love this story, and good for these ladies for sticking it to this fuck face. [from today's Post, of course.]

ATTACK OF THE KILLER LESBIANS

MAN 'FELT LIKE I WAS GOING TO DIE'

By LAURA ITALIANO

GOT WHUPPEDBig Grinwayne Buckle leaves court yesterday after testifying against four of the seven lesbians he says pummeled and stabbed him.
GOT WHUPPEDBig Grinwayne Buckle leaves court yesterday after testifying against four of the seven lesbians he says pummeled and stabbed him.
PrintEmailDigg ItStory Bottom

April 12, 2007 -- One of them was "slightly pretty," so the freelance film director decided to say hi.

Next thing he knew, he was encircled, beaten and knifed in the gut right there on a Greenwich Village sidewalk - by seven bloodthirsty young lesbians.

"The girls started coming out of nowhere," Dwayne Buckle told a Manhattan jury yesterday, describing the bizarre beat-down he suffered last summer, allegedly at the hands of a seething sapphic septet from Newark, N.J.

"I felt like I was going to die."

Buckle, 29, of Queens, took the stand in Manhattan Supreme Court yesterday to admit he was defenseless and terrified after his simple "hello" spurred a predawn melee on Sixth Avenue at West 4th Street.

Three of the original seven women are currently serving six-month jail sentences for attempted assault. But four others are on trial on first-degree gang-assault charges that could get them anywhere from three to 25 years in prison.

The accused ringleader - Patreese Johnson, 20, whom Buckle called the "slightly pretty one" - is additionally charged with attempted murder for allegedly pulling a knife from her purse and slashing Buckle repeatedly, lacerating his liver and stomach.

The women, in turn, claim they were defending themselves against a violent, anti-gay bigot, and counter that Buckle provoked them as he sat outside the IFC Center movie theater trying to talk pedestrians into buying his latest movie.

When they rebuffed his advances - telling him he wasn't their type - he began calling them "f- - -ing dykes," they say. He then spat on them, threw a cigarette at them, and even grabbed one of them by the throat - which, like much of the melee, was caught on an IFC video security camera.

"I'll f- - - you straight, sweetheart," he told defendant Venice Brown, 19, before choking her, her lawyer, Michael Mays, told jurors.

Buckle told a different story on the stand, assigning many of his alleged attackers monikers.

There was Brown, the one he admittedly called an "elephant." Then there was the one with the "low haircut," do-rag and wife-beater T-shirt, whom he admittedly called "a man," and the "slightly pretty" one to whom he first said hello.

It all started, he said, when the first two walked by. "They looked effeminate [sic] and one of them was slightly pretty, so I said 'hi' to them," he said.

But the "heavier girl, she started to dog me out," Buckle said.

"What does that, perchance, mean," asked the judge, Justice Edward McLaughlin. "Just disrespect me," Buckle explained. Then "more girls started coming out of nowhere."

Buckle admitted he retaliated, telling the one with the "low haircut" that "she looks like a man." He felt spit on the back of his neck, and spat back.

That's when the women's fists began flying. "I had my hands in the air in defense of their blows," he said. Then "I felt like a nick in my abdomen. I didn't know what happened.

"Everybody just jumped me," he added, including three male passers-by recruited on the spot by the women. "It felt like it was 10, 20 people." By the end, "I was messed up," he said.
I don't get the IMUS drama.

While I have never listened to his show, he seems to me like an ole fart. I think the reason he was fired was so less about what he said but more about him being put out to pasture.

The whole wild drama/headline grabbing about him saying they were nappy headed Ho's .... I find so 'whatever' since on a daily basis the rap industries icons are using these terms and much worse on a daily basis. Why then cos he's an ole white fart is this so taken to task?
I think it's really sad this kind of racial name calling but then again I am still sad that black americans call each other nigger. And loathe it that women are bitches and Ho's.
So....
But I just don't get these double standards...
I don't think it's a reflection of a double-standard. I think it'a finally a reaction AGAINST the double-standard going on there since forever. It's an 'election year' and Imus has interviewed alot of big names. Probably everyone he's interviewed is going to have to answer questions about their racism now.

There were THREE articles about the nappy-head ho comment in the Times on Thursday. The most interesting one was about Imus' side-kick, a freak named McGuirk, who apparently is there to say the worst things in the background, while Imus challenges him or ignores him... but in short, the nasty stuff gets said, but through an intermediary.

THIS TIME, Imus repeated what what McGuirk said. McGuirk called them "hard-core ho's" in an undertone and Imus repeated it with the hairstyle comment. He blew his own cover.
If Imus had not repeated it, probably none of this would have happened.
Another angle to look at is Imus' history. His inclination to use racial slurs, out of the context of comedy, are well known in some circles.
For example, one comment by Imus that ran in Time magazine..'when speaking about Gwen Ifill, the African-American PBS anchor who was then the White House correspondent for the New York Times, he said,"Isn't the Times wonderful? It lets the cleaning lady cover the White House." ' Ha-Ha.
I mean he's a dull old coot looking to remain cutting edge and he just ended his career. Good riddance. Maybe he can go clean houses now.
It's true Don Imus has been making condescending un-funny race jokes for years. He gets no sympathy from me. But it's also true that the rap industry is totally culpable in making it fashionable to characterize women as "bitches" and "hos" and to act and speak like a thug. To deny that is to ignore reality. One only need tune in Hot 97 first thing in the morning or watch MTV for 15 minutes to realize how pervasive and widespread the destructive nature of gangsta rap has become, and not just to our youth.

As for political correctness being "noxious", consider it sensitivity training for the masses, Darla. PC is what has civilized a great many people well versed in traditional etiquette (including truckloads of your fellow Republicans) from calling you a faggot to your face in board rooms or kicking your ass in the parking lot, deny all you like. Those who say they'd rather know someone's "honest" feelings about their sex lives or race (such as the apologists who defended General Pace's recent comments about "immoral" gays) are in fact far better off dealing with associates who stick to the task at hand and keep their personal morality-identity views to themselves. PC can become a jail cell when applied too stringently, like anything else. And PC is certainly not a criteria for good art. But if PC is what protects me from enduring racist or homophobic slurs in my daily life or forces someone to THINK before they act or speak, fine by me.
Then I suppose Lenin and Stalin "civilized" the Soviet Union. I've been around a lot longer than you, Lex, or PC, so don't try and tell me what PC has done or has not done "for" me. PC is mind control and the foundation of dictatorships.

"Political language -- and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists -- is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."

George Orwell, "Politics and the English Language", 1946
quote:
Then I suppose Lenin and Stalin "civilized" the Soviet Union.


Much like teaming the name "Hitler" with NYC bar crackdowns and smoking bans, your one-dimensional, straw-grasping comparison trivializes the murders of millions who really died under those horrific regimes.

And exactly how do you know how long I've been around? Again with faulty deductions. But I'll give you a pass on that one, given my membership in the Dorian Gray Set.

But you have a point. The part about trying to tell you anything. So done.
Gee Lex, if you can prove you're older than me, you know where to get really good fake ID.

And yes, there is a direct correlation between PC speech and a loss of freedom of the sort experienced under communism. We're just at the innocent person's career ruination stage right now. The left gets one thing and then wants the next degree. And the next.
This is a speech by Christopher Hitchens on Religion. I do not always agree with him, but on this I'm with him 100%. He is speaking against a proposed Canadian law that would ban "hate speech" that defames another persons religion.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=PY8fjFKAC5k

I'm opposed to "hate speech" codes of all kinds. I want hear what people really think. I'm also opposed to religion in general and I love what Hitchens has to say about it in this clip.
Here's a hilarious editorial from Der Speigel today. If you are wondering what europeans are thinking right now about the end of the Little Bush Idiocracy. The article has a few good bellylaughs and is outspoken in a way US media gave up 6 years ago. When have you ever heard any US journalist rightly deem Little Bush as delusional, or in an emotional fugue, or disasociative? Listen........

Bush's European Disaster
By Sidney Blumenthal
The president's trip was a pageant of disdain, delusion and provocation masquerading as a respite from his troubles at home.

I returned from Europe a week before President Bush departed for the G8 summit in Germany. In Rome and Paris I met with Cabinet ministers who uniformly said the chief issue in transatlantic relations is somehow making it through the last 18 months of the Bush administration without further major disaster. None of the nonpartisan think tanks in Washington can organize seminars on this overriding reality, but within the European councils of state the trepidation about the last days of Bush is the No. 1 issue in foreign affairs.

One of the ministers with whom I met, who had supported the invasion of Iraq and had been an admirer of outgoing British Prime Minister Tony Blair's, ruefully cited Blair's remark about Iraq at his joint press conference with Bush on May 17 at the White House: "This is a fight we cannot afford to lose." "Cannot? Cannot lose?" mocked the minister. "Should not have lost."

High officials of European governments describe U.S. influence as squandered and swiftly eroding (one minister went down a list of Bush administration officials, rating them according to their stupidity), the country's moral authority nil. Lethal power vacuums are emerging from Lebanon to Pakistan, and Europeans are incapable on their own of quelling the fires that burn far closer to them than to the United States through their growing Muslim populations and proximity to the Middle East. They have no illusions that they will be treated seriously as real allies or that there will be a sudden about-face by the Bush administration. Their faint hope -- and it is only a hope -- is that they have already seen the worst and that it is not yet to come. Even worse than Bush, from their perspective, would be another Republican president who continued Bush policies and also appointed neoconservatives. That would toll, if not the end of days, then the decline and fall of the Western alliance except in name only, and an even more rapid acceleration of chaos in the world order.

Bush's procession through Europe was a pageant of contempt, disdain, delusion, provocation and vanity masquerading as a welcome respite from his troubles at home. In Albania he landed at last in a place where he was hailed as a conquering hero. His demolition derby of U.S. influence was presented as a series of bold moves, but it confirmed the fears of the other world leaders at the G8 summit (and elsewhere) that the rest of Bush's presidency will be an erratic series of crashes. His performance ranged from King Nod, issuing proclamations oblivious to and even proud of their negative effect, to King Zog (the last king of Albania). No president has had a more disastrous European trip since President Reagan placed a wreath on the graves of SS officers in the Bitburg cemetery. Yet Reagan's mistake was unintentional and symbolic, a temporary and superficial setback, doing no real damage to U.S. foreign relations, while Bush's blunders not only reinforced counterproductive policies but also created a new one with Russia that has the potential of profoundly undermining U.S. national security interests for years to come.

Bush's foreign policy has descended into a fugue state. Dissociated and unaware, the president and his administration are still capable of expressing themselves as if it all makes complete sense, only contributing to their bewilderment. A fugue state should not be confused with cognitive dissonance, the tension produced when irreconcilable ideas are held at the same time and their incompatibility is overcome by denial. In a fugue state, a trauma creates a kind of amnesia in which the sufferer is incapable of connecting to his past. The impairment of judgment comes in great part from a denial of distress. Bush's fugue state involves the reiteration of a failed formula as though nothing has happened. So he proudly reasserts the essence of his Bush doctrine: Our acts are independent of other countries' interests. And he adds new corollaries: Other nations must forgive our unacknowledged mistakes even if we threaten their national security. To this, Bush overlays cognitive dissonance: Our policy is working; it just needs more time. Thus the incoherent becomes coherent.

Bush's amusing gaffes should not divert attention from the gravity of his underlying decline. Though his verbal hilariousness has been present since the beginning, his miscues, misstatements and mistakes now highlight a foreign policy in utter disarray.

Upon meeting Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican last weekend, Bush presented him with a gift of a wooden cane carved with English words. When the pope asked the president what they were, Bush told His Holiness, "The Ten Commandments, sir." To sir? With love?

In Rome, on June 9, a reporter asked Bush about setting a deadline for Kosovo independence. "What? Say that again?" "Deadline for the Kosovo independence?""A decline?" "Deadline, deadline.""Deadline. Beg your pardon. My English isn't very good." Bush then declared, "In terms of the deadline, there needs to be one. This needs to come -- this needs to happen." The next day, asked when he would set a deadline, he replied, "I don't think I called for a deadline." Reminded of his previous statement, Bush said: "I did? What exactly did I say? I said, 'Deadline'? OK, yes, then I meant what I said."

Before offering that tongue twister, Bush quite deliberately upset German Chancellor Angela Merkel's proposal for climate change at the G8. She put before the summit a program for carbon limits and an emissions trading system supported by, among others, Tony Blair, as his final gesture to burnish his reputation before he leaves office on June 27. Bush countered with a proposal for voluntary limits that would have to be approved by China, India and other major industrial countries that would not agree. In short, Bush's program was no program at all, except as a gambit to push aside Merkel's. With that, Bush demolished the possibility of any positive plan emerging from the summit. He also deprived Blair of a last achievement. Were it not for his relationship with Bush and support for his Iraq policy, Blair would not be leaving Downing Street. He has sacrificed his career to Bush's fiasco. His advice on the reconstruction of Iraq ignored, his advocacy grew more passionate. From whom much has been asked, nothing has been given.

While Bush was undermining traditional allies, Russian President Vladimir Putin was making child's play of him. Bush's proposal to put tracking stations for a missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic gave Putin his opening. In response, he offered a radar site in Azerbaijan to be jointly operated by the United States and Russia. Bush had deployed the wrong tactic on behalf of the wrong strategy. Bush's missile shield has not been proved to work, has cost hundreds of billions of dollars, and has an uncertain purpose. Is the plan meant to reassure eastern European nations of the former Warsaw Pact, Donald Rumsfeld's "new Europe," against Russia, or is it a short-term ploy to rally support in the one region in the world that still likes Bush because of deep residual pro-Americanism? If Bush intended to persuade Putin to temper his authoritarianism, he only succeeded in antagonizing the Russian leader. As Bush's "freedom" agenda has collapsed, he has reverted to a Plan B for a new ersatz Cold War. His ham-handed move allowed the adroit Putin to change the subject and corner him. Meanwhile, the engagement of Russia in areas of mutual interest -- containing Iran -- languishes.

In Iraq, Bush's policy is now to arm all sides in the sectarian civil war between Shiites and Sunnis. He claims to be devoted to nation building, which he previously dismissed, while he presides over a mass exodus of 2 million Iraqis, upholds law and order while holding tens of thousands of prisoners without due process, and conducts a "surge" of troops to secure the capital city of Baghdad whose main effect has been to facilitate its ethnic cleansing. The Iraqi government, for its part, has not met any of the benchmarks in reforming its laws demanded by the United States as the sine qua non of continuing support.

And where in the world is Condoleezza Rice? While Bush was in Europe, the secretary of state was at home. Instead of attending the summit, she delivered a speech at the Economic Club of New York, announcing that the new doctrine of the administration henceforth should be called "American realism." Until that moment, we were supposed to refer to it as "transformational diplomacy." Rice, the former realist turned neoconservative fellow traveler, seemed to have come full circle. But what was it exactly that she was doing with her rhetorical adjustment?

Rice's frenetic but feckless diplomacy in the Middle East has been fruitless. She is unwilling or unable to break beyond the bounds that Bush establishes, forbidding relations with Syria, for example, and thus guaranteeing her failure.

As she shuttles endlessly and meaninglessly, neoconservatives within the White House undermine her foredoomed initiatives. Elliott Abrams, the deputy national security advisor for policy, in briefing a meeting of Jewish Republicans, said that Rice's "talks are sometimes not more than 'process for the sake of process,'" the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on May 14. According to Haaretz, "Those attending the meeting of Jewish Republicans understood Abrams' comments as an assurance that the peace initiative promoted by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice doesn't have the full backing of President George W. Bush." As she engages in an academic exercise to rebrand empty rhetoric with new empty rhetoric, the neocons continue to create a parallel foreign policy.

Rice contradicts herself but forgets that she has. Bush continues to prattle about "freedom" but cannot remember his benchmarks. Only Dick Cheney remains consistent. The new mission statement is the old mission statement. The new scenarios are the old delusions. Time marches on.
I especially appreciated the analysis of cognitive dissonance versus a fugue state.
I think "Fugue State" decribes America very well these days.

As well the disdain for being jokey about Bush's gaffes. He shouldn't be allowed to get away with being a homespun numbskull anymore.
Today's excitement: Bush has vetoed the children's health plan because it will cost (gasp ) $35 billion over the next five years.

That's about three months' worth of mayhem and destruction in ONE YEAR in Iraq... as the war gets $200 BILLION dollars to operate in 2008.

Maybe American parents have to consider sending their children to Iraq to get their heath care. I'm sure there's a free state of the art clinic in the Green Zone.

The perversity and shame of this country's actions is overwhelming. Every month that goes by it gets worse, more hideous, more sad.
MESSY BONNIE RAITT STRIKES AGAIN,
and again, and again......................


U.S. SETS RECORD IN SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE CASES

AP Newswire service. By MIKE STOBBE,


` ATLANTA - More than 1 million cases of chlamydia were reported in the United States last year "” the most ever reported for a sexually transmitted disease, federal health officials said Tuesday.



"A new U.S. record," said Dr. John M. Douglas Jr. of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

More bad news: Gonorrhea rates are jumping again after hitting a record low, and an increasing number of cases are caused by a "superbug" version resistant to common antibiotics, federal officials said Tuesday.

Syphilis is rising, too. The rate of congenital syphilis "” which can deform or kill babies "” rose for the first time in 15 years.

"Hopefully we will not see this turn into a trend," said Dr. Khalil Ghanem, an infectious diseases specialist at Johns Hopkins University's School of medicine.

The CDC releases a report each year on chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis, three diseases caused by sexually transmitted bacteria.

Chlamydia is the most common. Nearly 1,031,000 cases were reported last year, up from 976,000 the year before.

The count broke the single-year record for reported cases of a sexually transmitted disease, which was 1,013,436 cases of gonorrhea, set in 1978.

Putting those numbers into rates, there were about 349 cases of chlamydia per 100,000 people in 2006, up 5.6 percent from the 329 per 100,000 rate in 2005.

CDC officials say the chlamydia record may not be all bad news: They think the higher number is largely a result of better and more intensive screening.

Since 1993, the CDC has recommended annual screening in sexually active women ages 15 to 25. Meanwhile, urine and swab tests for the bacteria are getting better and are used more often, for men as well as women, said Douglas, director of the CDC's Division of Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention.

About three-quarters of women infected with chlamydia have no symptoms. Left untreated, the infection can spread and ultimately can lead to infertility. It's easily treated if caught early.

Health officials believe as many as 2.8 million new cases may actually be occurring each year, he added.

Chlamydia infection rates are more than seven times higher in black women then whites, and more than twice as high in black women than Hispanics. But it's a risk women of all races should consider, CDC officials said.

"If (health care) providers think young women in their practice don't have chlamydia, they should think again," said Dr. Stuart Berman, a CDC epidemiologist.

The gonorrhea story is somewhat different.

In 2004, the nation's gonorrhea rate fell to 112.4 cases per 100,000 people in 2004, the lowest level since the government started tracking cases in 1941.

But since then, health officials have seen two consecutive years of increases. The 2006 rate "” about 121 per 100,000 "” represents a 5.5 percent increase from 2005.

Health officials don't know exactly how many superbug cases there were among the more than 358,000 gonorrhea cases reported in 2006. But a surveillance project of 28 cities found that 14 percent were resistant to ciprofloxacin and other medicines in the fluoroquinolones class of antibiotics.

Similar samples found that 9 percent were resistant to those antibiotics in 2005, and 7 percent were resistant in 2004. The appearance of the superbug has been previously reported, and the CDC is April advised doctors to stop using those drugs against gonorrhea.

Douglas said it doesn't look like the superbugs are the reason for gonorrhea's escalating numbers overall, but they're not sure what is driving the increase.

Other doctors are worried. The superbug gonorrhea has been on the rise not only in California and Hawaii, where the problem has been most noticeable, but also in the South and parts of the Midwest.

"Suddenly we're starting to see the spread," Ghanem said.

Syphilis, a potentially deadly disease that first shows up as genital sores, has become relatively rare in the United States. About 9,800 cases of the most contagious forms or syphilis were reported in 2006, up from about 8,700 in 2005.

The rate rose from 2.9 cases per 100,000 people to 3.3, a 14 percent increase.

For congenital syphilis, in which babies get syphilis from their mothers, the rate rose only slightly from the previous year to 8.5 cases per 100,000 live births.
Why promote a whole galaxy of warped values to young females if they can't participate in that same value system?

____________________________________________

From The Times
March 25, 2008

Miss Bimbo website promotes extreme diets and surgery to 9-year-olds

The internet game, aimed at girls aged 9 to 16, gives users 'bimbo dollars' to buy lingerie, diet pills and nightclub outfits. It has attracted 200,000 UK members

A website that encourages girls as young as 9 to embrace plastic surgery and extreme dieting in the search for the perfect figure was condemned as lethal by parents' groups and healthcare experts yesterday.

The Miss Bimbo internet game has attracted prepubescent girls who are told to buy their virtual characters breast enlargement surgery and to keep them "waif thin" with diet pills.
Healthcare professionals, a parents' group and an organisation representing people suffering anorexia and bulimia criticised the website for sending a dangerous message to impressionable children.

In the month since it opened the site, which is aimed at girls aged from 9 to 16, has attracted 200,000 members. Players keep a constant watch on the weight, wardrobe, wealth and happiness of their character to create "the coolest, richest and most famous bimbo in the world". Competing against other children they earn "bimbo dollars" to buy plastic surgery, diet pills, facelifts, lingerie and fashionable nightclub outfits.

The website sparked controversy when it was introduced in France, where it attracted 1.2 million players.

The Miss Bimbo site was set up by Nicholas Jacquart, a French entrepreneur. He moved to Tooting, South London, recently and with a 30-year-old businessman called Chris Evans set up Ouza Ltd to promote the website in Britain.
Registration on the Miss Bimbo site is free but it makes money by charging £1.50 per text message to buy "dollars" to spend on the characters. On the rules section it states that despite contestants wanting "to keep your bimbo waif thin . . . every girl needs to eat, every now and again". It suggests feeding the character to prevent her dying of starvation.

Mr Jacquart claims the game teaches children about the real world and is simply harmless fun.

He said: "The game is structured in such a way that it simply mirrors real life in a tongue-in-cheek way. It is not a bad influence for young children. They learn to take care of their bimbos. The missions and goals for the bimbos are morally sound and teach children about the real world.

"If they eat too much chocolate in the game, it is bad for their bimbos' bodies and their happiness levels compared to if they eat fruit and vegetables, which reinforces positive healthy eating messages.

"The breast operations are just one part of the game and we are not encouraging young girls to have them."

Mr Evans admitted that the story in the script had been created by "lads" and no professional advice was sought about how girls may interpret issues surrounding weight loss and gain.

Nick Williams, from Shrewsbury, Shropshire, said that he was appalled when he saw his daughters Katie, 9, and Sarah, 14, on the site pondering whether to buy their character breast operations and facelifts.

Mr Williams, 42, said: "I noticed them looking at possible breast operations and facelifts at the game's plastic surgery clinic. It is irresponsible of the site's creators to be leading young girls astray. They are easily influenced at that age as to what is cool and these are not things they should be encouraged to aspire to before they are old enough to be making up their own minds."

Peer pressure
Users are set targets:
Level 7
After you broke up with your boyfriend you went on an eating binge! Now it's time to diet . . . Your target weight is less than 132lbs

Level 9
Have a nip and tuck operation for a brand new face. You've found work as a plus-size model. To gain those vivacious curves, you need to weigh more than 154lbs

Level 10
Summertime is coming up and bikini weather is upon us. You want to turn heads on the beach don't you?

Level 11
Bigger is better! Have a breast operation

Level 17
There is a billionaire on vacation . . . You must catch his eye and his love! Good luck!
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Take a look, become a virtual bimbo!
_________________________
Miss Bimbo, virtual fashion game! - MissBimbo.com The world's first virtual fashion game ! Become the most famous and beautiful bimbo in the world.
Missbimbo
www.missbimbo.com/

If the site is blocked here is copy from the splashpage:

Welcome to Miss Bimbo. The world's first virtual fashion game !
Become the most famous and beautiful bimbo in the world !

* Find your own place to live.
* Find a job to provide for your needs and to buy all the clothes you want.
* Buy the latest fashions and become the coolest bimbo on the street !
* Become a socialite in order to increase your popularity and fame.
* Charm a famous handsome man to become a social diva.
* Even resort to medicine or cosmetic surgery. Stop at nothing to make yourself the Queen of the bimbos !
* Tackle the 68 tasks as quick as possible to become a star bimbo !!

----Or take a peek at the original French site:
http://www.ma-bimbo.com

View the demo:
http://www.ma-bimbo.com/demonstration.php

1,192,524 bimbos subscribe !


---Society eats its own gender values.
From The Independent.


USA 2008: The Great Depression

Food stamps are the symbol of poverty in the US. In the era of the credit crunch, a record 28 million Americans are now relying on them to survive – a sure sign the world's richest country faces economic crisis

David Usborne in New York
Tuesday, 1 April 2008


We knew things were bad on Wall Street, but on Main Street it may be worse. Startling official statistics show that as a new economic recession stalks the United States, a record number of Americans will shortly be depending on food stamps just to feed themselves and their families.


Dismal projections by the Congressional Budget Office in Washington suggest that in the fiscal year starting in October, 28 million people in the US will be using government food stamps to buy essential groceries, the highest level since the food assistance programme was introduced in the 1960s.

The increase – from 26.5 million in 2007 – is due partly to recent efforts to increase public awareness of the programme and also a switch from paper coupons to electronic debit cards. But above all it is the pressures being exerted on ordinary Americans by an economy that is suddenly beset by troubles. Housing foreclosures, accelerating jobs losses and fast-rising prices all add to the squeeze.

Emblematic of the downturn until now has been the parades of houses seized in foreclosure all across the country, and myriad families separated from their homes. But now the crisis is starting to hit the country in its gut. Getting food on the table is a challenge many Americans are finding harder to meet. As a barometer of the country's economic health, food stamp usage may not be perfect, but can certainly tell a story.

Michigan has been in its own mini-recession for years as its collapsing industrial base, particularly in the car industry, has cast more and more out of work. Now, one in eight residents of the state is on food stamps, double the level in 2000. "We have seen a dramatic increase in recent years, but we have also seen it climbing more in recent months," Maureen Sorbet, a spokeswoman for Michigan's programme, said. "It's been increasing steadily. Without the programme, some families and kids would be going without."

But the trend is not restricted to the rust-belt regions. Forty states are reporting increases in applications for the stamps, actually electronic cards that are filled automatically once a month by the government and are swiped by shoppers at the till, in the 12 months from December 2006. At least six states, including Florida, Arizona and Maryland, have had a 10 per cent increase in the past year.

In Rhode Island, the segment of the population on food stamps has risen by 18 per cent in two years. The food programme started 40 years ago when hunger was still a daily fact of life for many Americans. The recent switch from paper coupons to the plastic card system has helped remove some of the stigma associated with the food stamp programme. The card can be swiped as easily as a bank debit card. To qualify for the cards, Americans do not have to be exactly on the breadline. The programme is available to people whose earnings are just above the official poverty line. For Hubert Liepnieks, the card is a lifeline he could never afford to lose. Just out of prison, he sleeps in overnight shelters in Manhattan and uses the card at a Morgan Williams supermarket on East 23rd Street. Yesterday, he and his fiancée, Christine Schultz, who is in a wheelchair, shared one banana and a cup of coffee bought with the 82 cents left on it.

"They should be refilling it in the next three or four days," Liepnieks says. At times, he admits, he and friends bargain with owners of the smaller grocery shops to trade the value of their cards for cash, although it is illegal. "It can be done. I get $7 back on $10."

Richard Enright, the manager at this Morgan Williams, says the numbers of customers on food stamps has been steady but he expects that to rise soon. "In this location, it's still mostly old people and people who have retired from city jobs on stamps," he says. Food stamp money was designed to supplement what people could buy rather than covering all the costs of a family's groceries. But the problem now, Mr Enright says, is that soaring prices are squeezing the value of the benefits.

"Last St Patrick's Day, we were selling Irish soda bread for $1.99. This year it was $2.99. Prices are just spiralling up, because of the cost of gas trucking the food into the city and because of commodity prices. People complain, but I tell them it's not my fault everything is more expensive."

The US Department of Agriculture says the cost of feeding a low-income family of four has risen 6 per cent in 12 months. "The amount of food stamps per household hasn't gone up with the food costs," says Dayna Ballantyne, who runs a food bank in Des Moines, Iowa. "Our clients are finding they aren't able to purchase food like they used to."

And the next monthly job numbers, to be released this Friday, are likely to show 50,000 more jobs were lost nationwide in March, and the unemployment rate is up to perhaps 5 per cent.
That's horrible and it also really shows that most Americans have absolutely the wrong attitude about keeping animals...

I dunno, when animals come into my home and my life, they are there for as long as they may live... even if I have to beg for money to feed them. But I guess I have always been fortunate.
Not only are pets cast off, but a recent newsblip covered the phenomenon of the millions of house re-possessions -the growing trend is the occupants just up and leave, and leave their entire belongings, from furnishings and wardrobes, in the repossessed house.

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