Author Archives: s4o840t

John Boehner: I’d Rather Smoke and Drink Red Wine Than Be President

Mother Jones

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN” “”>

On Thursday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) stopped by NBC’s The Tonight Show to chat with host and reviled coup d’état leader Jay Leno. They discussed Chris Christie, Edward Snowden, Boehner’s occasional role as House “Gestapo,” and the GOP-led government shutdown. (“So I said, ‘You wanna fight this fight, I’ll go fight the fight with you.’ But it was a very predictable disaster. And so the sooner we got it over with, the better.”)

But the most interesting quote Boehner had to offer Leno’s audience was fluffier in nature. It came when the comedian asked the politician if he had any plans to run for president. His response:

I like to play golf. I like to cut my own grass. I do drink red wine. I smoke cigarettes and I’m not giving that up to be President of the United States.

Boehner definitely enjoys his red wine and cigarettes (two things you are allowed to consume as commander in chief, but whatever). President Obama gifted Boehner a $110 bottle of Tuscan red wine for his 63rd birthday, and Boehner received positive coverage from The Daily Beast for bringing the “booze back to Washington.” Boehner is a Camel Ultra Lights smoker, and prior to the smoking ban in the Speaker’s Lobby, he took smoking breaks there so frequently that one of the benches was dubbed the “Boehner bench.”

You can watch longer clips of his Tonight Show interview here.


John Boehner: I’d Rather Smoke and Drink Red Wine Than Be President

Posted in Casio, FF, GE, LG, ONA, Uncategorized, Venta | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on John Boehner: I’d Rather Smoke and Drink Red Wine Than Be President

Obamacare Has a Friend in the Health Care Industry

Mother Jones

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN” “”>

In the LA Times today, Noam Levey writes that Obamacare has an ace in the hole: the insurance industry. Sure, they have their gripes:

But since 2010, they have invested billions of dollars to overhaul their businesses, design new insurance plans and physician practices and develop better ways to monitor quality and control costs.

Few industry leaders want to go back to a system that most had concluded was failing, as costs skyrocketed and the ranks of the uninsured swelled. Nor do they see much that is promising from the law’s Republican critics. The GOP has focused on repealing Obamacare, but has devoted less energy to developing a replacement.

…. For many of these organizations, the prospect of new customers and a more rational system outweighs their sometimes intense irritation with the Obama administration. Insurance executives, in particular, have gnashed their teeth at the president’s attacks on their industry….Despite the frustrations, most insurers remain committed to moving to a new market that would achieve the central promise of the Affordable Care Act: that all consumers can buy health plans even if they have preexisting medical conditions.

This is really a crucial point. Like it or not, the entire health care industry has spent the past three years gearing up for the rollout of Obamacare. At this point, they’re committed—and doubly so since the Republican Party very clearly has no real alternative for them. This means that all the doom-mongering on Fox News is basically just chum for the rubes: Obamacare isn’t going anywhere, and everyone knows it. The health care industry will do everything it can to make it work, and one way or another, it’s going to work. Even the Medicaid expansion is almost certain to be taken up eventually by nearly every state as passions cool down a bit and hospitals start complaining about the lost income.

The tea party may not quite know yet that it’s lost the war, and Republican politicians have every reason to egg them on in this delusion, but the war is well and truly lost. It’s all mopping up now.

Originally posted here:

Obamacare Has a Friend in the Health Care Industry

Posted in FF, GE, LAI, LG, Mop, ONA, Uncategorized, Venta | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Obamacare Has a Friend in the Health Care Industry

"Made in California" Is the Essential (and Nonessential) Beach Boys

Mother Jones

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN” “”>

The Beach Boys
Made in California

With a staggering 174 tracks on six discs, Made in California is not the place to start for anybody interested in learning why The Beach Boys were arguably America’s premier band. For that, consult one of the umpteen greatest hits collections or Pet Sounds, their acknowledged masterpiece. But this massive hodgepodge of classics, obscurities, and barrel-scrapings—more than 60 of them previously unreleased—offers a compelling portrait of resident Beach Boys genius Brian Wilson in all his brilliance, and reveals a group of remarkable versatility, able to blend soulful doo-wop, Phil Spector’s wall of sound, jazzy pre-rock vocal harmonies a la the Four Freshmen, and rollicking Chuck Berry-style rock into one exciting identity.

From callow treats like “In My Room” and “Be True to Your School” to the ambitious intricacies of “California Girls” and “Good Vibrations,” Wilson had few rivals when it came to catchy singles. As he started to share creative control with the rest of the band in the second half of the ’60s, the results were spottier and weirder, with mediocrities outnumbering the winners throughout the ’70s and ’80s. Then the Beach Boys splintered, seemingly for good. Made in California can’t hide the quality-control issues, although it does shine a light on worthy less-celebrated songs like “Baby Blue” and “All This Is That,” and touches on their tantalizing, short-lived 2012 reunion. While hardly essential, this handsome package has plenty to lure Beach Boys diehards. You know who you are.

Read this article:

"Made in California" Is the Essential (and Nonessential) Beach Boys

Posted in FF, GE, LG, ONA, Uncategorized, Venta | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on "Made in California" Is the Essential (and Nonessential) Beach Boys

Arctic summers could be nearly ice-free in seven years

Arctic summers could be nearly ice-free in seven years


Say goodbye to this stuff.

Everybody get ready to grab your swimsuit and head north. The latest melting projections by government scientists suggest that the Arctic could be nearly ice-free during summer in seven years — or maybe even sooner.

But before you get all excited about the novelty of taking a dive into waters that once harbored year-round ice, we should warn you that the seven-year thing is a worst-case scenario. But even the best-case scenario published in a recent scientific paper projects that the summer ice will virtually disappear during the first half of this century.

(Also, we should warn you that the water will still be pretty damned cold, if not quite as cold as before. Also, you might get run over by a container ship. Or coated by an oil spill.)

There is substantial conjecture — and concern — over when the Arctic will finally lose its summertime coating of ice to the effects of climate change. Some scientists have previously suggested that it could happen by 2016.

So NOAA scientists recently used three common techniques for predicting when the summertime ice would disappear from everywhere in the Arctic, with the exception of Greenland and a spot just north of the Canadian Archipelago, and compared the results. Their methods: They extrapolated sea ice volume data; they assumed rapid melting events such as occurred last summer and in 2007 would occur again; and they used climate models.

“At present,” the scientists wrote in a paper published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, “it is not possible to completely choose one approach over another.” More from the paper:

The large observed shifts in the current Arctic environment represent major indicators of regional and global climate change. Whether a nearly sea ice-free Arctic occurs in the first or second half of the 21st century is of great economic, social, and wildlife management interest. There is a gap, however, in understanding how to reconcile what is currently happening with sea ice in the Arctic and climate model projections of Arctic sea ice loss.

The use of these different techniques resulted in forecasts of nearly ice-free summers sometime around 2020, or around 2030, or around 2040. Massive pool party y’all!

John Upton is a science fan and green news boffin who tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology. He welcomes reader questions, tips, and incoherent rants:

Find this article interesting? Donate now to support our work.Read more: Climate & Energy

Also in Grist

Please enable JavaScript to see recommended stories

Original article: 

Arctic summers could be nearly ice-free in seven years

Posted in Anchor, FF, G & F, GE, global climate change, ONA, Safer, Uncategorized, Wiley | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Arctic summers could be nearly ice-free in seven years

L.A. on a green streak: New mayor pledges allegiance to smart growth, bikes

L.A. on a green streak: New mayor pledges allegiance to smart growth, bikes

Eric Garcetti

Eric Garcetti.

Los Angeles got a new mayor this morning: City Councilmember Eric Garcetti beat City Controller Wendy Greuel, a fellow Democrat, more handily than expected in a historically low-turnout race (a pathetic 19 percent of L.A. voters cast ballots). He takes office July 1.

Garcetti, a Rhodes scholar and L.A.’s first Jewish mayor, has big shoes to fill: Will he carry on current Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s celebrated efforts to combat L.A.’s image as a smog-choked, car-worshipping, freeway-entangled sprawlsville?

So far, the signs point in that direction. Some have criticized Garcetti for being too friendly to business interests, but he sees working with developers as a necessary component of the smart-growth strategy he’s pursued to revitalize once-blighted areas of Hollywood, Echo Park, and Silver Lake, his home turf.

Villaraigosa did not endorse a candidate in the race. But Garcetti earned the support of the Sierra Club, which called his environmental record “unmatched”:

He authored the nation’s largest green building ordinance, the nation’s largest local clean water initiative, and legislation making L.A. the nation’s largest city with a solar feed-in-tariff. He nearly tripled the number of parks in his district by finding innovative ways to create 31 new neighborhood parks. He led the effort to pass the plastic bag ban and Low Impact Development Ordinance.

In an interview with Zócalo (in which he also revealed that the chupacabra fills him with terror), Garcetti said the toughest political fight he’s endured was a failed campaign to create veloways, bicycle lanes along the freeway: “Probably would have been a really bad idea for asthma and health to have bike lanes alongside five-lane freeways … It’s a wonder I’m in politics.”

But he’s still a big backer of bike culture. At a mayoral forum last year, Garcetti pledged his commitment to CicLAvia, a recurring event that closes miles of L.A. streets to cars. He said he hopes to make it a permanent monthly tradition. At the same forum, “Garcetti thanked cyclists for introducing bike culture, urban farmers for introducing community gardens, [and] business owners for repurposing dead alleys” and “reiterated his commitment to the human experience, pointing to mass transit as an opportunity to embrace geographical equity so that bus riders in South L.A. have the same opportunity to enjoy public art, comfortable transit stops, and shade as other passengers.”

So far, so good to our ears.

Claire Thompson is an editorial assistant at Grist.

Find this article interesting? Donate now to support our work.Read more: Cities



Also in Grist

Please enable JavaScript to see recommended stories

See the original article here:

L.A. on a green streak: New mayor pledges allegiance to smart growth, bikes

Posted in alo, Anchor, eco-friendly, FF, G & F, GE, LG, ONA, PUR, solar, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on L.A. on a green streak: New mayor pledges allegiance to smart growth, bikes

Arab American on Boston Marathon: "Everyone in This Room Is Holding Their Breath"

Mother Jones

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN” “”>

p.mininav-header-text background-color: #000000 !importantMore MoJo coverage of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings

What We Know About the Boston Marathon Attack

The Man in the Cowboy Hat: Meet Carlos Arredondo, a Hero of the Boston Bombings

Question Everything You Hear About the Boston Marathon Bombing

Terror Attacks on Sporting Events, Especially Marathons, Are Surprisingly Rare

6 False Things You Heard About the Boston Bombing

These Soldiers Did the Boston Marathon Wearing 40-Pound Packs. Then They Helped Save Lives.

From House oversight committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Mich.) to Sara El-Amine, the national director of President Obama’s political nonprofit, Organizing for Action, the Arab American community can count the Obama administration’s closest political allies and enemies among their number. Both were present Tuesday night as the Arab American elite gathered to celebrate their accomplishments at a black-tie event hosted by the Arab-American Institute in Washington, DC. Yet through the revelry and clinking of glasses, and the cheerful chitchat in English and Arabic, the terrifying attack in Boston cast a shadow over the evening.

Veteran CNN and ABC News journalist Christiane Amanpour was there to receive an award named for celebrated former New York Times foreign correspondent Anthony Shadid, whose death in Syria last year was a personal loss to many in attendance. Amanpour carefully broached what she called “the elephant in the room.”

“How many of us feel this burden of association and hope beyond hope that this won’t turn out to be what we are afraid it might be?” said Amanpour, who is partially of Iranian descent. “When we know who did this, we will all unite in strong and unequivocal condemnation.”

For many Arab Americans and Muslim Americans, flashing news alerts about another attack causing mass casualties brings anxiety over whether or not the perpetrator is a member of their communities, and if so, whether they will bear collective blame for the actions of isolated extremists. It’s a sinking feeling many minority groups have to cope with. But since the 9/11 attacks, the Arab American and Muslim American communities have been frequently singled out for suspicion by law enforcement, and have faced derision even from some public officials.

Tuesday, despite carefully worded statements from law enforcement and President Obama himself stating that the motive and identity of the perpetrators remained unknown, anti-Muslim and conservative bloggers narrowed in on a young Saudi student—who was never identified by authorities as a suspect, despite erroneous news reports—as the individual responsible for the carnage in Boston. By Tuesday afternoon, authorities said he was himself a victim.

“It’s devastating, I’ve got this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach,” said one Arab American community organizer on Tuesday night. “At the same time, I’m like, can we cool it with the ‘I hope he’s not Arab or Muslim thing’?” Community groups face a catch-22 in this situation, because any preemptive action on the part of Arab and Muslim advocacy groups to respond to unsubstantiated suspicion has the effect of cementing the association between Arabs, Muslims and terrorism in the public mind.

Until those responsible for the bombings are uncovered—there were conflicting reports on Wednesday afternoon about whether authorities had arrested a suspect—Arab and Muslim Americans will be on edge. Said one Arab American activist at Tuesday’s dinner, “Everyone in this room is holding their breath.”

Link to original: 

Arab American on Boston Marathon: "Everyone in This Room Is Holding Their Breath"

Posted in FF, G & F, GE, ONA, Uncategorized, Venta | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Arab American on Boston Marathon: "Everyone in This Room Is Holding Their Breath"