Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Lawsuit In Tenn. Public Sex Sting Case

Lambda Legal has filed a federal lawsuit against the police department of Johnson City, Tennessee and its chief of police for releasing the photos of 40 men arrested in a sex sting in a public park. The suit was filed on behalf of Kenneth Giles, a nurse who was fired from his job after his picture appeared in the local paper.
"In America, the police do not get to add an extra punishment to people they don't like," said Greg Nevins, Supervising Senior Staff Attorney in Lambda Legal's Southern Regional Office based in Atlanta. "They also do not get to ignore the principle of innocent until proven guilty. The JCPD went out of its way to humiliate Mr. Giles and caused irreparable damage."

On October 1, 2007 the JCPD issued a press release, personally approved by the police chief, that included photos that were taken at the scene where 40 men, including Mr. Giles, were arrested in a public sex sting. The local news ran the story prominently along with the pictures and addresses of the men involved. Lambda Legal reviewed the police department's press releases for over a period of a year and found that out of approximately 600 other releases, none pertaining to arrests was accompanied by photos or personally approved by the chief. Of the 40 arrested, one man has committed suicide, and several others have lost their jobs, including Kenneth Giles, who was fired from his job as a nurse at the VA hospital.

"I don't understand how the police department can release photos of one group and not any others," said Kenneth Giles. "I lost my livelihood because my arrest was treated differently."

Lambda Legal argues that the JCPD violated federal equal protection law by singling out these men for harsher treatment by making their images available to the media. Indeed, the actions of the JCPD are the latest in a long history of the police going beyond legitimate law enforcement measures to take extraordinary action designed to target gay men for humiliation and harassment.
Shortly after his photo was published, a 55 year-old man committed suicide.

PREVIOUSLY ON JMG: Stinging Shame.

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Children Of The Corn Sing Of Obama

Man, this is creepy. Corralling a bunch of kids and making them sing a song of praise of Obama? Hitler Youth, much? We can really do without this kind of support, it only feeds into the Obama-As-Fuhrer meme that has been sweeping Free Republic for the last few weeks.

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It's Ladies Night And The Feeling's Right

If you are a romantic lady, single baby, or sophisticated mama - take heart. Anti-feminist Den Hollander's federal lawsuit against ladies nights has been thrown out of court.
A Manhattan federal judge showed anti-feminist lawyer Roy Hollander the door Monday in his challenge to "Ladies Night" discounts at nightclubs. Judge Miriam Cedarbaum said private clubs like the Copacabana, Lotus and China Club can charge patrons whatever they wish.

Hollander argued that free or discounted cover charges for women were "invidious discrimination against men." The judge said Hollander's challenge differed from one pursued by two women who successfully sued downtown institution McSorley's Old Ale House for discrimination in the 1960s after they were denied alcohol. Nonsense, said Hollander. "This lawsuit would have put an end to guys financially subsidizing girls to party at nightclubs," he said.
Still pending: Hollander's lawsuit against Columbia University for offering courses in women's studies and his lawsuit against the federal government for the "gender-biased" Violence Against Women Act. He's a prince, ladies. And he's single!

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The Gayken Got $500K For Gayby Pics

Things can't be that bad if People Magazine paid Clay Aiken $500,000 for exclusive photos of his gayby. Clearly, we've still got our priorities right.

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Bloomberg's Third Term Now More Likely

Billionaire cosmetics king Ronald Lauder, the guy who in 1993 funded the successful push for term limits for all of Gotham's elected officials, has done an about face and is now backing the movement to allow Michael Bloomberg a third term as mayor.
"I've been reading that Mayor Bloomberg might be interested in serving a third term," the cosmetics heir said. "Because of the unprecedented times, this is welcome news. To me, Mayor Bloomberg's brilliance in the financial sector, particularly Wall Street, would be invaluable." He added, "If it wasn't for the fact of what's happening today in the world, particularly Wall Street, it would be a different story. But we need [Bloomberg's] expertise in New York."

Lauder - who virtually was single-handedly responsible for bringing term limits to the city in the 1990s - said he came to his decision in the last two to three days and had not held any talks with Bloomberg. The business community has rallied strongly around the notion of a third Bloomberg term, making the same case as Lauder.

The shift by Lauder - which would cover all citywide officeholders, the borough presidents and City Council members - is seismic, and its implications for the next 14 months in New York politics are profound, because every executive-level post and two-thirds of the council are term-limited out in 2009.
It's too late to put a rollback of term limits on the November ballot, so it will have to be done by a legislative act of the city council. It will be very interesting to see how city council Speaker Christine Quinn handles this, as she has been considered most likely to succeed Bloomberg.

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You Will Obey

Lots of you sent in photos of the Leather Obama image seen all around Folsom Street Fair on Sunday, with some calling it disrespectful and others just finding it amusing. Go here for a totally NSFW gallery of Folsom goings-on.

And of course, mansex-obsessed Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth about Homosexuality has begun his annual posting of the nekkid menz that so fascinate him.
Entry signs to the fair said “Nudity is illegal” but thousands of people took advantage of the fact that nudity and decency laws were not enforced by police. Below, two fully naked men pose for the camera. In the background is a booth for PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), a homosexual activist group.
How outrageous of those dirty leather folk to have supportive families! Also, I have been to Folsom many times and I seriously doubt there were "thousands" of naked men. Maybe there were a few hundred out of the 400,000 attendees. (And yes, the standard nude beach rules apply at Folsom: the less buff your body - the more likely you will be in the buff. Such is life.)

Again, I must express my amusement at Porno Pete's intense fascination with a one-day six hour event, when every single night of the year, in every American city, you can find uncountable hordes of hetero men cruising for car sex with hookers or swarming titty bars for champagne room blowjobs. It must be the lack of shame that he finds so shameful.

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Pakistan's President Zardari Gets Fatwa For Flirting With Palin

Ruh roh. An Islamic cleric has issued a fatwa against Pakistan's president Asif Zardari for "flirting" with Sarah Palin.
The prayer leader of the infamous Lal Masjid in the heart of Islamabad has issued a decree against President Asif Zardari for publicly making indecent gestures towards the American Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin during their Washington meeting, saying the act was un-Islamic and Zardari has shamed the entire Pakistani nation.

Delivering a sermon at the Lal Masjid the other day, the prayer leader Maulana Abdul Ghafar said that President Zardari’s indecent gestures, filthy remarks and repeated praise of a non-Muslim lady wearing a short skirt is not only un-Islamic but also unbecoming of a head of state of a Muslim country. He said that the manner in which Zardari shook hands with Sarah Palin and expressed his deep desire to hug her is intolerable and shameful.
Pakistan is shamed by Zardari, we're shamed by Palin.

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Obama's Economy Ad

Not your average 30 second spot, this one is two minutes.

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Here's the latest YouTube phenomenon: Christian band Sonseed (!) performing Jesus Is My Friend on local New York TV back in 1984. It's like the Gay Osmonds go ska. I think this might win the internet. Almost one million views already and tons of response videos.

Sample lyrics:

Once I tried to run
I tried to run and hide
But Jesus came and found me
And he touched me deep inside
He is like a Mountie
He always gets his man.
And he'll zap you any way he can...... zap!

About 30 years ago when I was going through my all-ska-all-the-time period (Selector, Specials, English Beat, Bad Manners) I would have probably bought the Sonseed record.

RELATED: Over on Metafilter there's a funny discussion over whether the clip is real or a faked viral campaign. Conclusion: real.

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Hunan Is To France As Sichuan Is To....

Another fantastic entry from Strange Maps, this one showing the populations of China's 34 provinces relative to countries of similar population. The top ten:
  1. Guangdong (113 million) Germany
  2. Henan (99 million) Mexico
  3. Shandong (92 million) Philippines
  4. Sichuan (87 million) Vietnam
  5. Jiangsu (75 million) Egypt
  6. Hebei (68 million) Iran
  7. Hunan (67 million) France
  8. Anhui (65 million) Thailand
  9. Hubei (60 million) U.K.
  10. Guangxi (49 million) Burma/Myanmar

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Gunfight At The DC Corral

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Gay Marriage Killed WaMu!

From the Liberty Counsel, comes this insight into the REAL cause of Washington Mutual's demise.
Google's cofounder and President of Technology, Sergey Brin, posted a statement Friday on the company blog against Proposition 8, the proposed constitutional amendment that would protect marriage in California as the union of one man and one woman. The blog post admitted that marriage was an "unlikely question" for an official company statement and that there were "many objections" to taking a position.

Liberty Counsel predicts that Google will also hear objections from the general public, as news of its position circulates. Many traditional marriage supporters and pro-family groups will be "googling" for alternative search engines. The search engine, www.goodsearch.com, gives half of its advertising revenue to charities designated by people using the search engine. GoodSearch reports on its website that searchers have raised $18,000 for one nonprofit organization, the USPCA. Of course, Google is not the only search engine available to consumers. Washington Mutual became an active supporter of the homosexual agenda. But today, it is no more. Corporate America has learned the hard way that anti-family policies are bankrupt in more ways than one.

Mathew Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, commented on Google's official position: "Google should focus on technology instead of warring against marriage and family values held by the majority of people worldwide. Marriage between a man and a woman is the norm throughout the world. Google executives should be searching for ways to make the internet more usable rather than promoting a radical redefinition of marriage. Companies that promoted anti-family policies have learned the hard way that such policies are bankrupt. K-Mart learned its lesson several years ago. Washington Mutual and Wachovia, both of which actively promoted the homosexual agenda, have come to realize that anti-family policies will bankrupt the bottom line."

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Gay Marriage Caused The Meltdown!

Gay marriage is also apparently responsible for the crisis on Wall Street. Via PageOneQ:
Christian fundamentalists are suggesting gays and lesbians are to blame for Wall Street's woes, a frequently made charge in the wake of national calamities.

In a September 25th blog post titled 'The Nation Will Right Itself If It Fixes Sex', Christian Civil League of Maine Executive Director Michael Heath writes that the financial crisis facing Wall Street is a symptom of America's sinful sexual culture, including the acceptance of gay unions.

"Our crisis is a symptom, not the cause," writes Michael Heath. "I am not saying I know whether this financial crisis is God's judgment or not. It is not for me to know that definitively."

Heath has a list of issues that he wants Maine's politicians to address to get right with God and, ostensibly, financially strengthen the state in some manner.
1. Put Maine on record as being against abortion the nanosecond the Supreme Court releases the Roe shackle.
2. Defund the Family Planning Association of Maine.
3. Amend Maine's Constitution to define Marriage.
4. Eliminate domestic partnerships and ignore pleas to create civil unions.
5. Unleash Maine's private sector to make Maine energy independent.
6. End discrimination against private religious schools and homeschools.

If we did that in 2009 I think God would crack a smile.

Katrina, earthquakes, forest fires, Wall Street. Tremble before our mighty power!

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Gay Marriage Causes Extra Gayness!

Via Christian Newswire:
Voters in several U.S. states soon will decide whether same-sex marriage will be permitted in their state. However, most voters are unaware of scientific research which reveals that social endorsement of homosexuality, as would be the case with the legalization of same-sex marriage, will lead more individuals into a homosexual lifestyle.

Trayce L. Hansen, Ph.D. [JMG: pictured above with her Commodore 64] , a licensed psychologist, recently reviewed extensive worldwide research on the origins of homosexuality and the impact social endorsement has on the rate of homosexual behavior. Dr. Hansen's findings are reported in a newly released article entitled, "Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage Will Increase Prevalence of Homosexuality: Research Provides Significant Evidence."
A glance at Hansen's website indicates that she bases her conclusions on the old "environment as cause of homosexuality" bit. It's kind of hilarious.
For American men, the environmental factor most related to homosexual behavior was the degree of urbanization during the teenage years. Specifically, boys who lived in large urban centers between the ages of 14 and 16 were three to six times more likely to engage in homosexual behavior than were boys who lived in rural communities during those same ages. The authors offer the following possibility: "an environment that provides increased opportunities for and fewer negative sanctions against same-gender sexuality may both allow and even elicit expression of same-gender interest and sexual behavior (p.308)." Note the word "elicit." These researchers believe that growing up in a more pro-homosexual region may evoke or draw out homosexual behavior in young men. The implication is that some homosexual men who were reared in urban centers would not have become homosexual if reared in non-urban centers. The authors explain, "the environment in which people grow up affects their sexuality in very basic ways (p.309)."

For American women, the environmental factor most associated with a homosexual or bisexual identity was a higher level of education. And though that was also true for men, the pattern for women was more dramatic. For instance, a woman with a college degree was nine times more likely to identify herself as non-heterosexual than a woman with only a high school diploma. The specific elements that create this marked difference are unclear, but the researchers don't believe it's simply due to higher reporting of non-heterosexuality by more educated individuals. They believe one explanation is the fact that with more acceptance, even encouragement, of homosexuality at universities, more university women embrace a non-heterosexual lifestyle. For an example of how that might develop, see Dennis Prager's article entitled, "College Taught Her Not To Be a Heterosexual."
Got that? Boys suck dick when there's plenty of it. And college makes you dyketastic. Otherwise, yeah, gay marriage probably WILL make more people comfortable with embracing their gayness. That's sort of the point, Dr. Hansen.

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Yes On 8's First TV Ad

I blogged this yesterday, but here's the actual clip. The chickenshits have blocked comments on YouTube, but you can still go rate it down.

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Sarah Brings A Chaperone This Time

McCain calls a shouted question to Palin from a person on the street "gotcha journalism". Hilarious.

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Morning View - Lauderdale Beach Erosion

My mom sent us this photo of the erosion of Fort Lauderdale's gay beach over the weekend. A combination of high winds and high tides caused by a storm off of North Carolina sent waves crashing over the seawall along A1A and washed away lifeguard towers. Beach erosion in southern Broward County is a continuous problem as the proliferation of hotels and condos has interfered with natural replenishment.

Three years ago the county spent over $20M on a project to widen the beaches from John Lloyd Park to the county line, but now they are working on an experimental plan to blast a 7-acre hole in the sea bed off of Port Everglades and dredge up that sand to try again. And of course, condo owners near the blast area are protesting. Also, what's my mom doing at the gay beach?

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Swag Tuesday

Courtesy of the publisher, this week's Swag Tuesday offering is an autographed copy of noted photographer Jeff Palmer's new coffee table book, Touch, which is now available through the artist's site (NSFW).
This new book is "touching" in the true meaning of the word -- Jeff Palmer's artistic male photography presents images of men touching... sometimes themselves, and sometimes other men.

Muscular men in highly emotional scenes are masterfully enveloped in light and shadows. They open up to the camera's lens with both self-assurance and abandon. This new collection took some time to complete and you can see it in the results. Those looking for a "snapshot aesthetic" may be disappointed, but those who appreciate meticulously composed photographs of male nudes and male couples are sure to be delighted!

Moody and thought-provoking, the images are selected by the publisher to express a wide variety of emotions and experiences. This monograph collection is definitively sensual -- classic and timeless images, fronts, backs, solos and couples.
As a bonus, the winner will received an autographed copy of the Jeff Palmer 2009 Calendar (NSFW). Enter to win by commenting on this post. Only enter once and please remember to leave an email address you check frequently. Entries close at midnight on Wednesday. Publicists: if you'd like to take part in Swag Tuesday on JMG, please email me.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

HomoQuotable - Barney Frank

"Here’s the story. There’s a terrible crisis affecting the American economy. We have come together on a bill to alleviate the crisis. And because somebody hurt their feelings, they decide to punish the country. I mean, I would not have imputed that degree of pettiness and hypersensitivity. We also have — as the leader will tell you, who’s been working with them — don’t believe they had the votes, and I believe they’re covering up the embarrassment of not having the votes.

"But think about this. 'Somebody hurt my feelings, so I will punish the country.' That’s hardly plausible. And there are 12 Republican members who were ready to stand up for the economic interest of America, but not if anybody insulted them. I’ll make an offer. Give me those 12 people’s names and I will go talk uncharacteristically nicely to them and tell them what wonderful people they are and maybe they’ll now think about the country." - Rep. Barney Frank responding to accusations that the bailout plan failed because House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's statement before the vote was "partisan" and caused some Republicans to change their votes. Republicans claim that 12 members switched their votes after Pelosi's speech, causing the bailout bill to fail.

RELATED: Regardless of your opinion of Barney Frank (and mine vacillates between abject adoration and outraged frustration), Frank is presently having unprecedented visibility on the national and international stage. An openly gay man, right or wrong on this issue, has the entire world hanging on his words. Fascinating.

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Columbia University: No ROTC On Campus As Long As DADT Is In Effect

Last month both McCain and Obama stated opposition to the decades-long Columbia University ban on on-campus ROTC activities. This weekend Columbia president Lee Bollinger emailed students to affirm that the ban would remain in place as long as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" remains military policy.
"Under the current 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy of the Defense Department, openly gay and lesbian students could or would be excluded from participating in ROTC activities. That is inconsistent with the fundamental values of the university," he wrote in an e-mail message to students.

Campus debate over the possible reinstatement of ROTC on campus was reignited earlier this month when senators Obama and McCain voiced their opposition to Columbia's ban during a televised appearance on campus. "The notion that young people here at Columbia aren't offered a choice or an option in participating in military service is a mistake," Mr. Obama said. Mr. Obama has said he would repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" if elected president, while Mr. McCain has voiced support for the policy.

Several student leaders have been advocating for a student-wide referendum on the military program. Their plan is to host two community forums in October featuring pro-ROTC and anti-ROTC students, to be followed by a student-wide survey a week later.

In a 2003 survey, 65% of Columbia students said they supported ROTC's return. But in 2005, the university senate voted in favor of upholding the ban. Mr. Bollinger voted with the majority.

Columbia students are allowed to enroll in ROTC but must travel to Fordham University or Manhattan College in the Bronx to participate. Five Columbia students are presently enrolled in the Fordham program.
There will be a student survey on the ban in October, but it will not be binding on school policy. Columbia banned the ROTC in 1969 in opposition to the Vietnam War.

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NYC Muslims Want Holiday Equality

Undeterred by Mayor Bloomberg's repeatedly stated opposition to adding more holidays to NYC's school schedule, Muslim activists are using Rosh Hashanah today to again push for the addition of Muslim holidays.
Estimates of the number of Muslims in New York City range from 600,000 to 850,000. Their children comprise about 10-12 percent of the more than 1 million students in public schools.

Current school policy permits students to take off religious holidays as an excused absence after submitting a written request signed by a parent. Public schools are closed on Christian holidays, including Christmas and Good Friday, and Jewish holidays such as Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The Coalition for Muslim School Holidays is seeking to add two more days off: Eid Ul-Fitr, the final day of the month-long fast of Ramadan (which happens to be this Monday); and Eid Ul-Adha, which marks the culmination of the Hajj, or annual pilgrimage to Mecca (and will be observed on Dec. 8 this year).

Bloomberg has rebuffed the group's efforts on several occasions, saying that students cannot afford any more days off, and adding Muslim holidays could open up the doors for other religions to make the same requests.

Bloomberg has the sole authority to make the decision, one that obviously could cause him tremendous grief with the city's Jews. While I don't think the government has any business recognizing ANY religious holiday, I'll grudgingly admit it seems unfair to deny such a massive population of the city.

RELATED: There are nearly 2 million Jews in NYC, more than any city in the world.

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House Votes Down Bailout Bill,
Stock Market Currently Down 500

The House of Representatives just voted down the bailout bill by a vote of 226-207.

Democratic: Yes - 141 No - 94

Republican: Yes - 66 No - 132

Totals: Yes - 207 No - 226

Supporters of the bill are working the House floor attempting to turn some of the No votes to Yes, so those totals will likely change a bit.

Meanwhile the stock exchange has been bouncing wildly. At one point it was down more than 700, but at this writing it has recovered to a mere -500.

UPDATE: The gavel has come down on the bill. Back to the drawing board.

Hang on to your hats, kids.

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Shelley, Warrior Princess

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Bristol & Levi's (Fake) Wedding Registry

Bristol & Levi would like a meat grinder, Precious Moments figurines, and a camouflage diaper bag.

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I Can See Sarah From My House!

"As Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where do they go? It's Alaska." - Sarah Palin.

(Image via Boing Boing via - Andrew Sullivan)

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Sashay, Chante!

Several times this weekend I tried to post this clip of Sarah Palin working the pageant runway in 1984, but the Republicflacks kept getting the clip pulled. I guess they've given up since so many folks are reposting it on their own. The Alaskan guy who posted this portion has promised to also post her flute solo talent segment. What song do you think she played?

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Glossolalia, Part 2

Since this cartoon first appeared in the online edition of the Washington Post three weeks ago, over 750 emails of complaint have poured in from people who think speaking in tongues is nothing to laugh at. Oh, wait...I'm 'bout to get caught up in the spirit! Obama Obama bo bama, bonana fanna fo fama, fee fi mo mamah, Obama! Whew!

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Married Gays Speak Out On Prop 8

Read more on Stop8.org.


Yes On 8 Launches TV Campaign

The Yes On 8 group Protect Marriage has launched their first TV ad. Jeremy at Good As You has pulled the clip off their site, go check it out. Jeremy thinks the clip is an "ineffective snoozefest." The ad ridiculously claims that Prop 8 would cause churches to lose their tax-exempt status and flashes a completely unrelated headline from the Gay & Lesbian Times as their proof.

Over on the Protect Marriage site, it's worth noting that the only photo on the home page is of an African-American couple. Clearly the haters to hoping to capitalize on the big black turnout for Obama, as has been talked about here recently.

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Matthew Shepard Memorial Opens

Via AP:
The nation — and the city of Laramie — has become more accepting of gays and lesbians in the 10 years since a gay University of Wyoming student was beaten, lashed to a lonely fence and left to die, his mother said Saturday.

"We've learned a lot, we've talked a lot; we do it in public forums now," Judy Shepard said at a ceremony dedicating a bench to her son, Matthew Shepard. "So it's a wonderful tribute to Matt that these kinds of things are discussed."

Shepard died Oct. 12, 1998, five days after he was found brutally beaten and tied to the fence outside Laramie. The two men who killed him are serving life sentences in prison. The crime triggered nationwide sympathy and revulsion and brought a re-examination of attitudes toward gays.

Shepard's parents established a foundation named after their son. Its stated goal is to "replace hate with understanding, compassion and acceptance." It also helps young gay people find a safe environment. Dennis Shepard said his son loved the university, Laramie and Wyoming. "I cannot say enough about what the university has done since that day to take care of the students here and to open their arms and their hearts to the rest of their country of the lessons learned," he said.
Like Andy Towle, I'm a little surprised that the memorial is a mere bench.

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Nuke Detectors For Everybody!

Scientists at Purdue University are lobbying Congress to require that radiation detectors be installed in cell phones, allowing the government to instantly triangulate the location of a potential dirty bomb.
"We have to fight this American knee-jerk toward the highest tech," says Andrew Longman, a project leader. The Purdue team is designing a detection system that's so small it could fit into cell phones. The project, known as Distributed Nuclear Detection by Ubiquitous Cell Phone, would help locate dirty bombs or nuclear weapons by "triangulating" the source of radiation when people carrying mobile phones pass by. (The greater the number of equipped cell phones, the greater the precision: phones closest to radioactive material would register stronger signals.) The Purdue project and others like it represent a "major shift" in combating radiation terrorism, says Rita Colwell, a former director of the National Science Foundation and now a professor at the University of Maryland.

The most effective system, says Longman, will be as inexpensive as possible, so hundreds of thousands or millions will carry sensors inside their cell phones. The Purdue team is lobbying Congress to require cell-phone users and telecoms, which will have to collect the data, to participate. Yet legislation mandating participation may not be necessary. Government agencies could simply pay mobile owners and telecoms that agree to opt in. Deploying detectors in mobile phones is promising, experts say, because the greatest concentration will be in cities, precisely where dirty bombers are most likely to strike.
The technology is expected to soon cost less than $100 per phone and might require larger handsets than those currently in vogue; one company has provided the government with sample $50 detector chips that are only one cubic centimeter in size, but that's still too large for your average iPhone or Razr.

Homeland Security has promised to support the most promising system and some expect that many citizens will willingly opt in so they can take personally take part in national security. The key to the technology's success will be its ability to ignore everyday "background" radiation like that emitted by some cancer patients.

(Via - Gizmodo)

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You Deserve Hell! And Pizza!

Pam Spaulding came across this pizza box-wielding baby fundie at North Carolina Pride this weekend. Go check out Pam's videos and slideshow for a cavalcade of crazy Christers, as well as some of the good people working on your behalf. By the way, the kid's t-shirt says "Virginity Rocks!"

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Top Ten Bank Failures Of All Time

Via Get Listy:

1. Washington Mutual, Seattle (2008)
Total assets: $307 billion

2. Continental Illinois National Bank and Trust, Chicago (1984)
Total assets: $40.0 billion

3. First Republic Bank, Dallas (1988)
Total assets: $32.5 billion

4. IndyMac Bank, Pasadena, Calif. (2008)
Total assets: $32 billion

5. American S&LA, Stockton, Calif. (1988)
Total assets: $30.2 billion

6. Bank of New England, Boston (1991)
Total assets: $21.7 billion

7. MCorp, Dallas (1989)
Total assets: $18.5 billion

8. Gibraltar Savings, Simi Valley, Calif. (1989)
Total assets: $15.1 billion

9. First City Bancorporation, Houston (1988)
Total assets: $13.0 billion

10. Homefed Bank, San Diego (1992)
Total assets: $12.2 billion

The previous nine biggest failures together don't equal WaMu.

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The Case Against Mark Buse

Over at BlogActive, one of Mike Roger's readers has laid out the case for exposing John McCain's hypocrisy in employing chief of staff Mark Buse.

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Rudy Giuliani: Wall Street Vulture

Former New York mayor and full-time opportunist Rudy Giuliani is rubbing his hands with glee over the financial meltdown on Wall Street.
Rudy Giuliani is positioning his law firm to cash in on Wall Street's train wreck - a move that has become a gift to political enemies of his pal John McCain. Even as the nation's $700 billion, taxpayer-funded Wall Street bailout was still being hashed out, the former mayor announced Thursday his high-powered law firm has set up a task force.

Its mission: to help corporate clients get a piece of the action - or keep the federal wolves from the door. "Our team of former government officials and experienced attorneys in the fields of legislation, enforcement and finance are equipped to guide institutions in this quickly evolving and complex environment," Giuliani noted in a press release from his law firm, Bracewell & Giuliani.

Giuliani is not the only one poised to profit from opportunities created by the mega-meltdown, but he is the most politically famous. Giuliani is a prime surrogate for Republican McCain, who has called the economic meltdown "the greatest crisis since the end of World War II" and has assailed Wall Street for "unbridled greed."

Democrats argued that Giuliani's latest business pitch reflected poorly on the Arizona senator, a longtime friend who chose the former mayor to give the keynote speech at the GOP convention. "Bracewell & Giuliani's crass opportunism raises serious questions about whether John McCain is comfortable with one of his most visible campaign surrogates trying to cash in on what Alan Greenspan called a once-in-a-century economic crisis," Democratic National Committee spokesman Damien LaVera told the Daily News. McCain campaign officials declined to comment.
Says the Daily News: "Top-shelf firms like Bracewell & Giuliani routinely charge corporate clients fees topping $800 an hour for every senior lawyer's time - or a commission based on the value of transactions that could reach billions of dollars."

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Palin Falls 27% In "Favorables"

She's now at -10 (meaning 40% view her favorably, 50% unfavorably). Two weeks ago she was at +17.

(Via - Daily Kos)

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Macho, Macho Yanks

The Yankees held their annual hazing of the rookies this weekend, forcing the newbies to dress as the Village People and parade around Boston. I watched it on the news, wondering if there might be a faint hint of homophobia in making the players dress as the most famous gay group of all time, but everybody seemed to be having a ball with it. I gotta wonder who got them the outfits, isn't that a Nasty Pig shirt on the cop?

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Morning View - Midtown Tunnel

This is the Queens entrance to the Midtown Tunnel, which opened in 1940. Every March, the tunnel is closed for one night for the Ringling Brothers / Barnum & Bailey Circus to walk their elephants to Madison Square Garden. The toll for cars is $5 each way, elephants are free.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Screw The Economy, What This Campaign Needs Is A Shotgun Wedding

Is the McCain campaign planning an October surprise?
In an election campaign notable for its surprises, Sarah Palin, the Republican vice- presidential candidate, may be about to spring a new one — the wedding of her pregnant teenage daughter to her ice-hockey-playing fiancé before the November 4 election.

Inside John McCain’s campaign the expectation is growing that there will be a popularity boosting pre-election wedding in Alaska between Bristol Palin, 17, and Levi Johnston, 18, her schoolmate and father of her baby. “It would be fantastic,” said a McCain insider. “You would have every TV camera there. The entire country would be watching. It would shut down the race for a week.”
Wasn't this the plan in The Birdcage?

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No Lifeline For Sarah Palin

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Cheating With Mike Rowe

Via Gawker:
Dirty Jobs host, Deadliest Catch narrator, and former opera singer Mike Rowe has yet another accomplishment to add to his already impressive resume. Readers at Gay.com have voted him the number one dude they'd like to cheat on their boyfriends and husbands with. Poor old silver fox Anderson Cooper's stock is on the decline, as he came in third place out of 25 nominees behind Fast and Furious robot Paul Walker. And in a heartening sign that he's only popular during the Olympics manfish Michael Phelps carried a mere two percent of the vote. As for Rowe, he sent this humble acceptance message:

"What can I say? I'm honored. I would, however, like to take a moment to clear something up. Even though I got my start in theater, sang for years in The Baltimore Opera, moved to San Francisco and never married, I must tell you all again, for the hundredth time ...

"I am NOT a celebrity.

"Not that there's anything wrong with that... "
A funny and great response, not to mention a HUGE improvement over the video Rowe posted on YouTube last November in which he expressed disgust over fawning emails from male fans.

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Paul Newman Dead At 83

Paul Newman died of lung cancer yesterday at age 83, leaving behind one of the greatest acting legacies in history. For many, however, Newman will be more fondly remembered for a lifetime spent as a generous philanthropist. Newman's line of natural food products has donated over $250 million to numerous charities since he first came up with the idea of selling his salad dressing while standing in Martha Stewart's kitchen.

Dedicated to liberal and progressive causes, Newman's name appeared on Richard Nixon's famed enemies list, which Newman called "the highest single honor" he'd ever received. Newman was nominated for nine Academy Awards, winning Best Actor for 1986's The Color Of Money.

What's your favorite Paul Newman film? Mine, in order: Cool Hand Luke, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, Absence Of Malice. Here's Paul Newman and James Dean's screen test from the 50's. The audio doesn't start for a few seconds, but Dean says to Newman: "Kiss me." Newman: "Can't here."

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Friday, September 26, 2008

What Did You Think?

It wasn't the most stirring of debates, no single line jumped out at me right off the bat. Maybe something will come up during the coming endless analysis. But I wasn't too happy to hear Obama say over and over "John is exactly right," knowing that McCain's flacks would jump all over that. Sure enough, the ad is already out, less than an hour later.

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Google Comes Out Against Prop 8

From Google co-founder Sergey Brin:
As an Internet company, Google is an active participant in policy debates surrounding information access, technology and energy. Because our company has a great diversity of people and opinions -- Democrats and Republicans, conservatives and liberals, all religions and no religion, straight and gay -- we do not generally take a position on issues outside of our field, especially not social issues. So when Proposition 8 appeared on the California ballot, it was an unlikely question for Google to take an official company position on.

However, while there are many objections to this proposition -- further government encroachment on personal lives, ambiguously written text -- it is the chilling and discriminatory effect of the proposition on many of our employees that brings Google to publicly oppose Proposition 8. While we respect the strongly-held beliefs that people have on both sides of this argument, we see this fundamentally as an issue of equality. We hope that California voters will vote no on Proposition 8 -- we should not eliminate anyone's fundamental rights, whatever their sexuality, to marry the person they love.
Wonderful! And thanks, Mr. Brin. Uh, where's the money?

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Palin Unknowingly Accepts Book About Killed Openly Gay Priest, Mychal Judge

Yesterday when Sarah Palin visited a downtown 9/11 memorial, author Michael Daly was there signing copies of his book about Father Mychal Judge, the quietly gay yet celibate priest who was killed by falling debris outside the Twin Towers. When Palin approached Daly's table, his handlers suggested inscribing a copy for her. In the photo at left, Daly's book is in Palin's hand.

Michael Daly:
I thought of Mychal, who had bridged all differences. I recalled that Sen. Hillary Clinton, former Mayor Dave Dinkins and former Mayor Rudy Giuliani had all welled up while talking to me of their fallen friend. I now wrote in the title page what I felt sure to be true.

"For Governor Palin, who would have loved Mychal."

I was introduced to her and I handed her the book, not entirely sure she knew who Mychal was. I opened the book to what some have called the modern Pieta. Her eyes welled again as she gazed at the photo of the anguished first responders carrying him from the fiery ruins.

"Mychal always said, 'If you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans for tomorrow,'" I told her, adding, "I guess a lot of people in this country have been feeling that way lately."
Would Palin have loved Mychal? Or would her church call him a witch and demand that she "stomp on the neck" of his "python spirit"?

Judge was the official chaplain of the NYFD and was the first recorded death of September 11th. By all accounts he was beloved by NYC's firemen and according to some reports, there are firemen who now pray to his photo in their lockers before heading out on a call. Daly's book discusses Judge's gay yet celibate life and one chapter goes at length about his never-consummated love for a much younger man. Some Catholic factions have called for his canonization, although others have vehemently denied his gayness, accusing the LGBT movement of attempting to co-opt his death and turn him into a homosexual icon.

But those that deny his gayness willingly ignore that Judge was a decades-long member of the LGBT Catholic group Dignity. In 1986 when the Vatican declared homosexuality an "intrinsic moral evil", most bishops and New York's Cardinal O'Connor banned Dignity from Catholic properties. It was Mychal Judge who welcomed their AIDS ministry to his church.

Here's the photo that Daly refers to above, the "American Pieta."

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Fallout From Lawrence King?

In Hamilton, Ohio, an 8th grade boy is getting grief for wearing makeup to school. I'm guessing that this is only a story because schools are now terrified of having their own Lawrence King tragedy.
A Garfield Middle School student and his family are challenging the Hamilton City School District over his right to wear black eyeliner and lipstick to school.

Matt Allsup, a 13-year-old eighth-grader at the school, was told Monday, Sept. 22, to wash the makeup off his face. An administrator told Allsup it was "distracting" and therefore against the district's dress code. Allsup said the makeup "expresses who I am. I am not like other people. I like rock 'n' roll and this expresses that. I am discriminated against." Students in the Hamilton school district wear character badges that encourage acceptance and valuing the uniqueness of others, Allsup said. "Why make us wear the character cards if they are not going to let us be unique?" he asked.

"It's gender stereotyping and sexual discrimination," said his mother, Mindy Ball. "If he has to take off his lipstick, then so do the little girls in the school." Ball suggested to school officials that if the issue was the lipstick's color, she would buy her son pink.

Officials told her he couldn't "wear it because it's distracting because he's a male," she said. "He's a good kid and he is popular. The reason he wears eyeliner is because he is self-conscious and he thinks it makes his eyes look bigger."

No discipline was involved in the incident, said Joni Copas, district spokeswoman. "He washed it off and that was the end of it. The administrator didn't think it was conducive to the education process and the district believes it was handled appropriately. If makeup is too harsh — whether it's a girl or a boy — the student should be asked to wipe it off." Ball said her next stop is "to contact a lawyer. I want him to know that no matter who he is or what he chooses to do, I will always stand behind him."
He looks like a run of the mill goth/emo kid to me. Nowhere does the story suggest that this boy is gay or transgender like murdered California teen Lawrence King. However, the Freepers have filed it under Homosexual Agenda.

-"This boy and his mother have serious mental problems.The boy is obviously GAY and the mother would rather have a daughter than a son.I bet she makes him wear a pad once a month also.They should both be put away."
-"This little wimp wouldn’t last 2 minutes in West Texas."
-"When I saw the picture, I knew there was no father (or Father) in the house."

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The South Shall Drink Again

Dan Savage unearthed this clip of a smashed Hillary supporter in Kentucky railing against Obama. "Black got nothin’ to do with it. These A-rabs are trying to sneak this guy into our country." This clip hits ALL the redneck talking points, including a couple of uses of the n-word. With Democrats like this...

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McCain Wins Debate!
And Invents Time Travel!

Via Washington Post:
Although the fate of tonight's presidential debate in Mississippi remains very much up in the air, John McCain has apparently already won it -- if you believe an Internet ad an astute reader spotted next to this piece in the online edition of the Wall Street Journal this morning.

"McCain Wins Debate!" declares the ad which features a headshot of a smiling McCain with an American flag background. Another ad spotted by our eagle-eyed observer featured a quote from McCain campaign manager Rick Davis declaring: "McCain won the debate-- hands down."

Here's the screenshot.

Time travel powers...PROACTIVATE!

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Is Wachovia Next?

Now Wachovia is wobbling.
The seizure of Washington Mutual Inc. (WM) is quickly becoming a problem for Wachovia Corp. After federal regulators on Thursday night seized the West Coast thrift and its bloated book of failing home loans, investors have trained their focus on Wachovia, which itself holds piles of risky mortgages.

Wachovia shares recently traded down 23% to $10.58, while the cost of insuring Wachovia's debt against default quickly rose to distressed levels. Wachovia looks to be in substantially better shape than Washington Mutual before WaMu failed. Wachovia has a loyal and largely affluent banking clientele, and a sizable business of offering investment services to clients through financial advisors.

But Wachovia held more than $122 billion in so-called Pick-A-Pay or Option ARM mortgages as of July 22 - an unwieldy type of loan that has fast become notorious for producing high levels of losses, as well as high levels of risk for banks who wrote them.

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We Call It "Maize"

Some Ohio farmer sacrificed 16 acres of farmland to draw Sarah Palin in corn. Later he mowed down a field of Metamucil to draw McCain.

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Gaying Up The Tube

Here's CNN assessment of the rise of LGBT characters on television this season, with some soundbites from GLAAD's Neil Giuliano and the Family Research Council's Peter Spriggs, who of course says it's all part of the gay propaganda agenda. CNN's conclusion: "Things are changing in the right direction."

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Letterman Rips McCain For Second Night

David Letterman did not let up on John McCain last night, devoting the first ten minutes of the show to again rip McCain for ditching his show and "suspending" his campaign.

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CNN: Tonight's Debate Will Happen

CNN is reporting that University of Mississippi officials have received word that both candidates will appear for tonight's debate.

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Broadway Friday

- Creepy, kooky, ooky. Workshops for The Addams Family: The Musical begin in January. Music by openly gay (and gay married) composer/lyricist Andrew Lippa (left), book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice. Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth have done a rehearsal as Gomez and Morticia. The show is an "original musical" and will not draw upon the TV or movie versions of the characters.

- Suddenly, the wheels are in motion. Citing the present "tough economic climate", the producers of Xanadu are closing the show two weeks earlier than previously announced. The final performance is now this Sunday.

- OMG, you guys! Legally Blonde closes on October 19th after 30 previews and 595 performances. A national tour launched last week and is booked through September 2009.

- Six inches forward, five inches back. Hedwig and the Angry Inch - Halloween Extravaganza will play at the Highline Ballroom on October 27th. Jonathan Whitton stars. Tickets $15.

- Magic wand. Rave review for Daniel Radcliffe's Equus from the Times' Ben Brantley.

- The Gay Agenda's Great Big Broadway Show plays this Saturday at 11pm at the 45th Street Theatre. "THE GAY AGENDA has a single goal: Complete and utter world domination through SHOWTUNES." Tickets $20.

- Rev up your chainsaw: the musical version of American Psycho is headed for Broadway. Will there be a "splatter zone" like with Evil Dead: The Musical?

- It was the worst of times. A Tale Of Two Cities is getting poor reviews from all corners.

- The Young Frankenstein national tour will begin in fall 2009. No cities or dates announced.

- Sans Madge. Previews for David Mamet's Speed-the-Plow begin Oct.2, starring Jeremy Piven, Raúl Esparza, and Elisabeth Ross. At the Barrymore.

- Budget White Way. The Broadway Hotel & Hostel is offering $38 beds from Oct. 1 - Dec. 31. Downside: four "dormitory" bunk beds to a room, but you could get lucky with your roommates. Book by midnight Wednesday for the deal. It actually looks OK in the pics.

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Do Not Pass Congress, Go Directly To Jail

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More Tragedy For Iraq's Gays

The Baghdad coordinator of Iraqi LGBT, the group that organizes underground safe houses for gays in Iraq, was machine-gunned to death yesterday in a Baghdad barber shop. The announcement was made by UK-based activist Peter Tatchell.
This morning, I received news from Iraq that the coordinator of Iraqi LGBT in Baghdad, Bashar, aged 27, a university student, has been assassinated in a barber shop. Militias burst in and sprayed his body with bullets at point blank range. He was the organiser of the safe houses for gays and lesbians in Baghdad. His efforts saved the lives of dozens of people. Bashar was a kind, generous and extremely brave young man – a true hero who put his life on the line to save the lives of others. My thoughts go out to his loved ones and to the other members of Iraqi LGBT. Their courage is an inspiration to all people everywhere fighting against injustice.
A sad, horrifying, and chilling tragedy. I last mentioned Iraqi LGBT several weeks ago and again I ask you to consider donating to their PayPal account.

A separate story by Peter Tatchell, apparently written before the above news was received, was published in yesterday's Guardian UK. A short excerpt:
My friends in Iraq have relayed to me the tragic story of five gay activists, who belonged to the underground gay rights movement, Iraqi LGBT.

Eye-witnesses confirm that they saw the men being led out of a house at gunpoint by officers in police uniform. Yes, Iraqi police! Nothing has been heard of the five victims since then. In all probability, they have been executed by the police – or by Islamist death squads who have infiltrated the Iraqi police and who are using their uniforms to carry out so-called honour killings of gay people, unchaste women and many others.

The arrested and disappeared men were Amjad 27, Rafid 29, Hassan 24, Ayman 19 and Ali 21. As members of Iraq's covert gay rights movement, for the previous few months they had been documenting the killing of lesbians and gays, relaying details of the murders to the outside world, and providing safe houses and support to other gay people fleeing the death squads.

Their abduction is just one of many outrages by anti-gay death squads. lslamist killers burst into the home of two lesbian women in the city of Najaf. They shot them dead, slashed their throats, and also murdered a young child who the women had rescued from the sex trade. The two women, both in their mid-30s, were members of Iraqi LGBT. They were providing a safe house for gay men on the run from death squads. By sheer luck, none of the men who were being given shelter in the house were at home when the assassins struck. They have since fled to Baghdad, and are hiding in an Iraqi LGBT safe house there.
Below is a short film, Queer Fear - Gay Life, Gay Death in Iraq, featuring Peter Tatchell and the stories of murdered Iraqi queers. It's not easy to watch, but watch it.

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Obama Mama

This is writer/comedian Greg Scarnici and SNL musical director Katreese Barnes, who debuted her smash club hit Alright, Alright at this year's Black Party. Does this remind anyone else of Gwen Guthrie's Ain't Nothing Going On But The Rent?

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Catholic League Defends Sarah Palin's Church: Witches Are REAL, People!

The Catholic League's Vice President of Spooky Things, Bill Donahue, rushed out a press release yesterday to defend Sarah Palin's church after a 2005 video surfaced showing a minister performing an anti-witchcraft incantation over her bowed head.
“Witchcraft is a sad reality in many parts of Africa, resulting in scores of deaths in Kenya over the past two decades. Bishop Muthee’s blessing, then, was simply a reflection of his cultural understanding of evil. While others are not obliged to accept his interpretation, all can be expected to respect it. More than that—Muthee should be hailed for asking God to shield Palin from harmful forces, however they may be manifested. And for this he is mocked and Palin ridiculed? We know that many cultural elites have a hard time embracing religion, but is it too much to ask that they at least show some manners when discussing subjects which most Americans hold dear?”
Damn you elitists and your witch denying ways! Don't you know most Americans hold witches dear? Damn you!

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G-A-Y's In Heaven

The owners of London's famous G-A-Y nightclub, which closed in July, have purchased the possibly more famous Heaven.
"MAMA Group Plc is pleased to announce that through its jointly owned subsidiary, G-A-Y Group Limited, it has acquired Heaven, the company which owns the leasehold of Heaven Nightclub and owns, operates and manages the business of promoting events at the venue," the group said in a statement.

Heaven has been a favourite London venue with the gay community since it opened in 1979. It is currently the only club in Westminster licenced to sell alcohol until 6am every day.

Adam Driscoll and Dean James, Co-Chief Executive Officers of MAMA, said: "We are delighted that the acquisition of Heaven (London) Limited has enabled us to add this unique venue to our expanding live music portfolio. The transfer of the G-A-Y club nights to Heaven together with other popular club nights currently staged at the venue will ensure the continued growth and development of Heaven. " The Astoria had been the venue for G-A-Y club nights for 15 years. It is to be demolished to make way for the Crossrail project and a redevelopment of Tottenham Court Road station.
Never went to G-A-Y, but no trip to London is complete without a stop at Heaven.

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Morning View - Starret-Lehigh Building

It may not look like much from this angle, but this is the home of Martha Stewart Omnimedia. In 1931 the block-sized Starret-Lehigh was built on West 26th Street as an innovative "modernist experiment in industrial architecture" because it featured train tracks so that freight cars brought by boat from New Jersey could be driven into the building and lifted in giant elevators to the upper floors.

However, the George Washington Bridge and Lincoln and Holland tunnels were all completed at about the same time and long-haul trucking replaced most rail deliveries to Manhattan. The trucking industry then took over the nearby waterfront. You can tour Martha's offices on her blog. Other current tenants include Hugo Boss, Club Monaco, and School of Visual Arts.

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Washington Mutual: Gone In Largest Bank Failure In American History

At least we won't be paying for this one. Maybe.
Washington Mutual, the giant lender that came to symbolize the excesses of the mortgage boom, was seized by federal regulators on Thursday night in the largest bank failure in American history.

Regulators simultaneously brokered an emergency sale of virtually all of Washington Mutual to JPMorgan Chase. The remainder of WaMu, the nation’s largest savings and loan, will be operated by the government. Shareholders and some bondholders will be wiped out. WaMu deposits are guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation up to the $100,000 limit for each account. WaMu customers are unlikely to be affected.

JPMorgan Chase is to take control on Friday of all of WaMu’s 2,300 branches, which stretch from New York to California, and will oversee its big portfolio of mortgage and credit card loans. It will also acquire all of WaMu’s deposits with the sale.

For weeks, the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department had been nervous about the fate of WaMu, among the worst-hit by the housing crisis, and pressed hard for the bank to sell itself. As panic gripped financial markets last week following the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the government stepped up its efforts, working behind the scenes and at points going behind WaMu’s back to work privately with potential bidders on a deal.

Indeed, the seizure and the deal with JPMorgan came as a shock to Washington Mutual’s board, which was kept completely in the dark: the company’s newly minted chief executive, Alan C. Fishman, was in midair, flying from New York to Seattle at the time the deal was finally brokered, according to these people.

The action removes one of America’s most troubled banks from the financial landscape, and helps to avoid sticking taxpayers with a huge bill for the rescue of another failing institution.
Via Calculated Risk:
"For all depositors and other customers of Washington Mutual Bank, this is simply a combination of two banks," said FDIC Chairman Sheila C. Bair. "For bank customers, it will be a seamless transition. There will be no interruption in services and bank customers should expect business as usual come Friday morning."

JPMorgan Chase acquired the assets, assumed the qualified financial contracts and made a payment of $1.9 billion. Claims by equity, subordinated and senior debt holders were not acquired. "WaMu's balance sheet and the payment paid by JPMorgan Chase allowed a transaction in which neither the uninsured depositors nor the insurance fund absorbed any losses," Bair said.

Washington Mutual Bank also has a subsidiary, Washington Mutual FSB, Park City, Utah. They have combined assets of $307 billion and total deposits of $188 billion. Thursday evening, Washington Mutual was closed by the Office of Thrift Supervision and the FDIC named receiver.
Where will this madness end?

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Dingbatting A Thousand

COURIC: You've cited Alaska's proximity to Russia as part of your foreign policy experience. What did you mean by that?

PALIN: That Alaska has a very narrow maritime border between a foreign country, Russia, and on our other side, the land-- boundary that we have with-- Canada. It-- it's funny that a comment like that was-- kind of made to-- cari-- I don't know, you know? Reporters--


PALIN: Yeah, mocked, I guess that's the word, yeah.

COURIC: Explain to me why that enhances your foreign policy credentials.

PALIN: Well, it certainly does because our-- our next door neighbors are foreign countries. They're in the state that I am the executive of. And there in Russia--

COURIC: Have you ever been involved with any negotiations, for example, with the Russians?

PALIN: We have trade missions back and forth. We-- we do-- it's very important when you consider even national security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the air space of the United States of America, where-- where do they go? It's Alaska. It's just right over the border. It is-- from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to-- to our state.

(Transcript via - Pam Spaulding)

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