the scarecrow says some people go both ways

by lestro

in the Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy happens upon a fork in the road and wonders which way to go, the Scarecrow offers her some advice, twisting himself into knots pointing out Dorothy’s choices.

Elections are much like the yellow brick road, really, and it helps to have friends with you – especially the brainless, heartless or courage-less – it’s fraught with peril (including winged monkeys like Ann Coulter), and can make you want to just go to sleep and forget it all (like the poppies) so when you arrive at the end, it’s a bit disappointing to find out the giant floating heads are just people after all.

But like the Scarecrow’s first scene, it provides choices.  Today the most e-mailed photo on Yahoo is brilliant and is, potentially, a great metaphor for the Democratic primary that couldn’t help but remind me of the Scarecrow…

I’m just saying…

understatement of the day

by twit

From the Seattle Post-Intelligencer on January 30, 2008:

Court throws out DUI breath tests

The twit suggests “screaming with irony” as a good place to start in developing a snappier way to capture this report:

In the 29-page ruling, Judges David Steiner, Darrell Phillipson and Mark Chow listed a litany of lab errors involving an ethanol-water solution that needs to be precisely mixed to make sure that breath-test machines are accurate.

They said various problems affected solutions that were used for more than 18,000 breath tests, and they found that the lab’s work simply could not be relied on by judges or juries.

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by lestro

In a speech in Atlanta on Wednesday in front of a Baptist convention, Hillary Clinton talked about going to see Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Staying awake through the revolution” sermon.

Really? Not only do you represent a boomer revolution that is nearing an end, but on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 2008, your husband was filmed dozing off behind the pulpit in Harlem.

Are you sure that “staying awake through the revolution” is really the reference you want to make?

ok, you’re the candidate…

rudy, we hardly knew ye

by lestro

This campaign just won’t be the same without Rudy Giuliani.

Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t have voted for the guy if he paid me – and I wouldn’t have put it past him to try – but every good campaign storyline needs a villain and nobody was more qualified for that than Rudolph Giuliani.

Even his name sounds great all reverbed out with lightning crashes and organ music behind it.

I mean, the rest of the cast goes from inspiring through off-putting and head-slapping right down to screwhead capitalist pig dog, but Rudy was mean. Evil. Angry. He conjures up the kind of visceral dislike usually saved for Dick Cheney, Dick Nixon and Creed.

Rudy Giuliani is an old school political scumbag in the pure Nixonian tradition. A Brooklyn kid with a Napoleon complex, anger issues and a desire to not only best but embarrass and punish his enemies, as well as anybody else, who has the audacity to share the spotlight with him.

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peace and serenity

by twit



although according to Boing Boing, not if the Bush Administration has anything to say about it plans to develop the area for oil drilling continue.

like flies

by lestro

Less than 24 hours after the Florida primary and already two of this election season’s heavyweights are throwing in the towel.

On the Democratic side, the New York Times (and other media outlets) are reporting that John Edwards has decided to end his quest for the nomination.

It was only a matter of time, really. After campaigning in Iowa for about six years, Edwards finished second and vowed to fight on, but was counting on the momentum from an Iowa victory to launch him past Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. In New Hampshire, he pulled only 17 percent, then dropped to 4 percent in Nevada (where even the major unions – groups he courted for years and a natural constituency for his fiery, populist message – endorsed other candidates) and only pulled in 18 percent in South Carolina, the state where he was born and neighbor to the state he represented in the Senate.

Last night in Florida, a state whose delegates have been stripped by the Democratic National Convention, Edwards again only garnered 14 percent of the vote and despite having racked up 26 delegates (compared to Obama’s 63 and Clinton’s 48), it looks like Edwards has decided not to fight on, meaning the top two can now go on a little more secure that Edwards will not play kingmaker. Read more of this post

US predicts 30-minute warning for satellite crash landing

by twit

LATEST UPDATE: Feb. 20, 2008: Lestro reports on new information about the plans to shoot the satellite down, including video of the satellite being shot down.

UPDATE: Via Reuters on Feb 15, 2008:

Ambassador Christina Rocca said that if efforts fail to strike the satellite with a missile while it is still in space, it was expected to make an “uncontrolled re-entry into the earth’s atmosphere on or about March 6”.

UPDATE: From MSNBC on Feb 14, 2008:

WASHINGTON – The Pentagon, under orders from President Bush, is planning to shoot down a broken spy satellite expected to hit the Earth in early March, the White House said Thursday.

U.S. officials said that the option preferred by the administration will be to fire a missile from a U.S. Navy cruiser, and shoot down the satellite before it enters Earth’s atmosphere.

… The military will have to choose a time and a location that will avoid to the greatest degree any damage to other satellites in the sky. Also, there is the possibility that large pieces could remain, and either stay in orbit where they can collide with other satellites or possibly fall to Earth.

… officials won’t have much detail on where or when it will crash until it begins to move through the atmosphere and break up.

Basically, if you see something like this in the sky during early March:
(image via Newsvine)

You have about a half-hour to take cover.

Whether effective cover would be available if the US can’t destroy the fuel tank in advance of the crash seems like a reasonable question, at least based on this report from Boing Boing on Feb 14, 2008:

It contains 1,000 pounds of hydrazine fuel, which “could turn into a toxic gas capable of causing deaths and injuries if it crashed in a populated area.”

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