And recent days gave me a good but sad one, as this past Friday, Alan O'Day, the songwriter who created "Angie Baby" (as well as the #1 hit "Undercover Angel" and the hilariously titled album Caress Me Pretty Music) passed away at age 72. Here's the cartoon video that was made of his career-defining song, which was broadcast on The Sonny and Cher Show. Also, today is Cher's birthday. Anyway, please enjoy the cartoon "Angie Baby." (And if you need more Angie, don't miss this great live performance and this unnerving computer animation.)
RIP, Alan O'Day.
Man, it's rare day that I agree with Karl Rove and Marco Rubio about anything, but they're totally right on the Justice Department's ridiculous overreaching in their pursuit of Fox News reporter James Rosen. Karl Rove says it's "chilling" and "beyond the pale" and adds that in the Bush administration, "There were leaks of classified information and in each and every instance, the focus was on the potential leak, not the reporter who received it." And Rubio says:
I am very concerned by reports the Obama Administration targeted a FOX News reporter for possible criminal prosecution for doing what appears to be normal news-gathering protected by the First Amendment. The sort of reporting by James Rosen detailed in the report is the same sort of reporting that helped Mr. Rosen aggressively pursue questions about the Administration’s handling of Benghazi. National security leaks are criminal and put American lives on the line, and federal prosecutors should, of course, vigorously investigate. But we expect that they do so within the bounds of the law, and that the investigations focus on the leakers within the government – not on media organizations that have First Amendment protections and serve vital function in our democracy. We must insist that federal agents not use legitimate investigations as an excuse to harass journalists they deem unfriendly to the President or the Administration. We shouldn’t even have to ask if our government would do such a thing, but unfortunately as the unfolding IRS scandal shows, this White House has created a culture where we do have to explicitly make these kinds of requests.
As Ryan Lizza writes on The New Yorker's website: "It is unprecedented for the government, in an official court document, to accuse a reporter of breaking the law for conducting the routine business of reporting on government secrets."
Here's the PDF of the Justice Department's application for a search warrant of Rosen's email account, with several instances of statements like this:
Can you imagine if this were a Republican administration targeting, say, an MSNBC reporter? On Twitter, Lizza described today's White House briefing as "surreal":
Today's WH briefing is surreal. Reporters can't get @presssec to garner a shred of concern about DOJ calling James Rosen a criminal.— Ryan Lizza (@RyanLizza) May 20, 2013
Meanwhile, Lizza's Twitter bio has changed to "Washington Correspondent for The New Yorker, Contributor for CNN, aider, abettor and/or co-conspirator."
A rightwing Internet radio host is gonna get a visit from the Secret Service.
This guest post is by 17 leaders from across the state who oppose the expansion of coal exports.
The fight against dramatically expanding coal exports scored a victory this month when three proposed coal port sites were abandoned by Houston-based Kinder Morgan Co. However, two proposed coal export sites remain in Washington State: Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point and Millennium Bulk Terminals in Longview. That is why the newly launched Leadership Alliance Against Coal will continue to work to oppose coal trains and exports to protect our communities.
Washington residents live in a state that is beautiful, prosperous, and bountiful with natural resources. As Washington leaders of cities and tribal nations, we have an obligation and fiduciary responsibility to protect our environment, natural resources, economies, and the health of our residents. Together, we are building a future that ensures generations from now still will call Washington State the best place to make a home and raise their children.
That is why we oppose the proposals to build coal export terminals on the Puget Sound, and to send as many as 18 coal trains per day, each over a mile long, through our state to and from these terminals. These coal trains threaten the health of our communities, the strength of our economies, and the environmental and cultural heritage we share.
In our cities, these coal trains will create unacceptably long delays for residents, visitors, freight, first responders, and others who are trying to cross the busy rail corridor. The City of Seattle conducted a study that found coal trains could add an additional two hours of gate downtime at major street crossings of the railway by 2025. Similar delays are likely in cities large and small along the proposed route of these trains.
On Washington State tribal lands, coal trains will cause those same disruptions, but will also do additional damage to treaty rights and cultural heritage. The proposed Gateway Terminal located at Cherry Point is proposed to be built on sacred ground of the Lummi Nation. It is no different than if someone proposed to build a coal terminal at Arlington National Cemetery. For generations, the Native Americans have witnessed and experienced devastation of cultural heritage, health and ancestral lands. We don’t need to see any more.
From the Chicago Sun-Times:
The girl had walked to Fritz’ home to meet with him, and when she arrived, Fritz allegedly took the girl down to the basement and sexually assaulted her despite her resistance and demands to stop...
Brown and Applewhite then sexually assaulted the girl while Fritz videotaped the rape, according to court documents. Fritz was identified in the video because at one point he turned the camera towards his face, authorities said...
Two days later, the video of the attack was posted on Brown’s Facebook account, according to court documents. The video was also allegedly later posted on Fritz and Applewhite’s Facebook pages.
Here's the Jezebel post about it, which I'm linking to only because half the comments are just GIFs and pictures of kittens, which you might need, because this shit is unbearably grim.
CALIFORNIA: A San Leandro youth pastor was among dozens arrested during a massive prostitution sweep last week in Florida, who was in Orlando for a ministers conference. Samuel Yoon, 45, who works at New Community Mission Church, a Southern Baptist church in San Mateo, was arrested May 8 as part of an undercover sting in Polk County, Fla. In all, 92 people were arrested in a span of four days. Sheriff's deputies said Yoon responded to an ad posted by an undercover detective offering women for sale. Authorities say that he was looking to have sex with who he thought was a 14-year-old girl. He was in Orlando at the time, authorities said, to attend a youth ministry conference.
Hide yo' kids, hide yo' wife... THEY'RE coming! Soon Seattle will be crawling with the foot soldiers of a very powerful and evil army. Here is your official Wicked Clown Countdown™ that you never wanted, nor asked for, SLOG.
You have only 4 days to prepare.
Clown'mageddon Helpful Hint #1: You can buy Faygo at Ezell's Chicken on 23rd. Stick to Rock & Rye, or Redpop. They look the most like blood.
Posted by news intern Ansel Herz
Slog tipper Hart Viges, an Iraq War vet, sends this photo of a National Guard recruitment effort at the Great Urban Race near Denny Triangle on Saturday. The big red banner shows the Superman and National Guard logos together—in between it says, "One American icon inspires another." Later, I saw runners on Capitol Hill wearing red capes emblazoned with the two logos. The joint Man of Steel movie and National Guard promotion is called Soldier of Steel.
As the Soldier of Steel website says, "Superman's worldwide heroics are invaluable. But he can't be everywhere at once. The National Guard needs recruits like you."
To make matters worse, Cracked breaks down a hokey new National Guard/Man of Steel commercial and says it depicts Superman "as one big crazy jackass."
Viges says he approached the recruiters holding the banner in his Iraq Veterans Against the War hoodie—he's a member of the anti-war group who's been tabling at local high schools promoting alternatives to military service. Viges says he tried to explain that Lex Luthor, Superman's arch-nemesis, was an arms dealer, corporate executive, and US president, and they're twisting the hero's narrative.
Obvious question: If it's not okay to use comic book characters to sell cigarettes, why is it okay to use them to sell war?
On tomorrow's ballot, the city of Portland, Oregon will decide whether to fluoridate its drinking water supply, a measure that a recent SurveyUSA poll suggests is losing by a double-digit margin. Good news for dentists, but fucking crazy. So crazy, in fact, that it qualifies the entire city of Portland to win the SECB endorsement for Lieutenant Governor.
Capitalism all around...
Green Metropolis: Why Living Smaller, Living Closer, and Driving Less Are the Keys to Sustainability (David Owen)
- Highlight on Page 191 | Loc. 2280-84 | Added on Sunday, May 19, 2013, 03:59 PM
In 2006, a researcher at the University of Montana, in a study based on satellite data collected by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, determined that the nation’s largest irrigated crop is cultivated grass, which covers more than 32 million acres in the continental United States. (The second largest irrigated crop, at roughly 10 million acres, is corn.) 15 Homeowners spend more than $40 billion a year on their lawns, and they use approximately a hundred... (You have reached the clipping limit for this item)
At dawn yesterday morning, in a remote and wooded area of Seattle, Saint Genet company director Ryan Mitchell re-created Chris Burden's notorious 1971 artwork Shoot. In the original, Burden was shot in the arm with a .22 rifle in a gallery and called it sculpture. Ryan was shot in the arm with a .22 rifle, then walked approximately ten miles to the theater, and called it performance.
I walked with him. I was not exactly thrilled to be in the situation, but if it was going to happen anyway, I felt a duty to witness.
That was the beginning of Saint Genet's closing-night performance of Paradisiacal Rites at On the Boards. The top-two activities for Seattle just after dawn were jogging and homelessness.
There's a photo of the wound—for your own verification purposes—below the jump. More coming in next week's paper.
A new poll in Seattle's mayoral race conducted this weekend on behalf of KING-5 News, shows Mayor Mike McGinn retaining a slight lead in his hotly contested fight to retain his office.
|Mike McGinn||22 percent|
|Peter Steinbrueck||17 percent|
|Ed Murray||15 percent|
|Bruce Harrell||12 percent|
|Kate Martin||4 percent|
|Charlie Staadecker||4 percent|
|Mary Martin||3 percent|
The survey of 522 registered voters was conducted after Seattle City Council member Tim Burgess dropped out of the race.
The good news for McGinn is that despite the many reporters of his political death, he continues to lead the field. A previous KING5/SurveyUSA poll from March also showed McGinn with a small lead over declared challengers. The bad news for McGinn is that after nearly four years in office, he still trails "Undecided."
Objectively, 22 percent is a pretty shitty number for an incumbent. Then again, the closer we get to the primary, McGinn's numbers don't look all that bad as long he remains in the top two.
Following up on Cienna's post on street harassment last week, I'd like to call attention to some awesome projects fighting street harassment, all of which were mentioned in the comments section as a place to turn when you're trying to combat that icky, how did I just lose that interaction so hard? feeling.
• Commenters were quick to give a shout out to Hollaback!, a website that encourages women who are harassed on the street to document the incident and post it on the site, creating a record of it and possibly embarrassing the harasser while offering some community to other women. They now run a nonprofit that trains people to run localized Hollaback! sites. Seattle currently doesn't have a local site. Someone get on this!
• I'm in love with Tatyana Fazlalizadeh's wheatpaste poster project, Stop Telling Women to Smile, also pointed out by Bree McKenna in comments. Fazlalizadeh also runs a blog with photos of the posters; the most telling ones, I think, are here. (She also sells shirts.)
• Don't Harass Me, Bro posted in the comments about their sticker project. Go here to buy their stickers, and they'll post pictures of where you stuck 'em. (Hopefully on a jerk's face, but walls are nice, too.)
• Commenter Tomahawk started the blog I Was Asking For It, where she posts "pictures of the frumpy shit I happen to be wearing when assholes come a'calling." Submissions are apparently welcome. This is a funny middle finger to the but-what-were-you-wearing question.
• Commenter bookworm shared a link to these Stop Street Harassment stickers that showed up in Oakland.
Doing something about it later is a way to get a little control back, if you aren't quite awake/badass enough to lipstick your entire face, or you were too scared to do anything, or you're just going through the rest of your day climbing the l'esprit d'escalier over and over in your head (remember: shouting a loud "SORRY ABOUT YOUR MICROPENIS" is always an okay go-to retort).
You might've seen a variation of this poster around Capitol Hill over the past few days:
The proper response to an arson is...
1) prohibit you and other law-abiding citizens from buying gasoline.
2) prohibit you and other law-abiding citizens from buying any flammable fluids, matches and lighters.
3) prosecute the perpetrator of the crime
The questionnaire is supposed to underscore how important it is for you to be armed to the teeth all times. The arguments aren't new or particularly convincing, I just find it striking that a traditionally conservative movement is branching out to recruit gays and lesbians.
It's hard to know who's responsible for putting the posters up all over Capitol Hill. "Nale Dixon," who's credited for drawing the cartoon of the gay couple, returns no search results online. The pro-gun website is run by a dude named Oleg Volk, "An American," but that doesn't necessarily mean he's responsible for papering the hill with them. Without someone to credit, it's impossible to glean the posterer's intentions.
Perhaps being courted by a traditionally right-wing, conservative movement is refreshing and progressive, but it could also just be really effective concern trolling. What better way to make people feel unsafe in gay-friendly Capitol Hill than by slyly referencing homophobia and hate crimes in pro-gun propaganda plastered on every street corner?
Do not watch this video unless you want to see a man attempt to steal a woman's phone and then immediately get hit by a bus. (No gore, SFW, but still, BAM.)
Before the Boston bombing—before surveillance first saved the day and then re-terrified us when a phone conversation between the bomber and his wife was revealed to have been recorded because every phone call period is being recorded by the government now—two technology artists at the University of Washington created an artwork that profiles people who walk by it 24 hours a day. The art piece, called Sanctum, is as innocent as warm pie compared to the National Security Agency. It opened May 4, projected on the facade of the Henry Art Gallery. The museum commissioned it; it will run for two and a half years. Before that, it spent two years in development, artists James Coupe and Juan Pampin not only building and programming its system, but consulting with lawyers and UW's Office of Risk Management to make sure Sanctum wasn't violating whatever remaining privacy we have in public places.
You activate Sanctum.
Since Tim Burgess dropped out Friday and Peter Steinbrueck has been crowned king of the NIMBYs, it's looking more and more like a three-way race for mayor, at least according to our legally binding, always-infallible, impossible-to-be-abused-by-campaigns-that-astroturf-it-on-Twitter Slog poll.
Speaking of which: The poll closes at 3:30 p.m. today.
As of this morning, with 35.9 percent of the vote, Mayor Mike McGinn holds a gossamer thin lead over state senator Ed Murray, who's got 34.5 percent of the vote. Meanwhile,. Seattle City Council member Bruce Harrell has 21.6 percent of Slog's love.
But former council member Peter Steinbrueck trails with a anemic 5.4 percent—and none of the rest cracked even 1 percent.
Thanks, Sarah Galvin?!
In the Kemper Freeman utopia—without all that nasty, communistic commuter rail—this would be the idyllic CT to NYC commute every day:
Connecticut commuters endured slow trips to work Monday following last week's train collision that that injured 72 people and disrupted rail service into New York City.
... Many decided to drive instead. State transportation officials said traffic on Interstate 95 and the Merritt Parkway was at a crawl Monday morning, with the trip between Bridgeport and Stamford estimated at about an hour during the height of the rush hour. The trip normally takes about 25 minutes.
And that's not with no transit. That's with Metro-North using 120 shuttle buses between New Haven and Bridgeport until regular service can be restored.
In the comment thread on my recent article about King County Metro's looming 17 percent service cuts (and other posts like it) you can see plenty of comments fuming about the very notion of subsidizing bus and rail service with tax dollars. But as Connecticut commuters are learning today, drivers benefit hugely from keeping all those transit riders out of their cars and off the roads.
Posted by intern Madeline Reddington
Today, science is puzzling out mental illness, contemplating the ins and outs of mass extinction, trying out nano-gardening, and training honeybees to seek out live landmines.
The 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) was released Saturday, to mixed reactions
Published by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), the DSM is often used by doctors to diagnose mental health conditions in patients that meet specific sets of criteria. Among other changes, the fifth edition drops Asperger’s syndrome as a distinct condition and includes it under the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, revises diagnostic criteria for mental health disorders, and adds several new disorders, including “Binge Eating Disorder.”
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is not at all happy with DSM-5, noting particularly that the diagnoses are based on “clusters of clinical symptoms, not any objective laboratory measure,” and can hamper new research using genetics, cognitive science, imaging and other avenues to learn more about mental health. Critics also say the DSM-5 tends to “overpathologize” human behavior, but there are strong opinions on both sides.
Would humanity survive a mass extinction? Listen in at Town Hall Wednesday
Who: Annalee Newitz—Science and tech journalist, editor-in-chief of science-fiction/science blog io9, author of Scatter, Adapt, and Remember
What: Newitz talks about human history of dodging extinction, the one we could be on the cusp of, and suggests how we might survive again.
Where: Downstairs at Town Hall (enter on Seneca)
When: Wednesday, 7:30 – 9:00
Advance tickets are $5 online, and at the door starting at 6:30. Read more here.
Harvard researchers “grow” micron-scale crystal flowers
Wim Noorduin, a postdoctoral researcher, makes tiny gardens in a beaker of fluid. To make the flowers, Noorduin uses chemical gradients to shape the direction in which crystals grow. One of his gardens is around the base of the Lincoln Memorial on a penny.
Honeybees could help find unexploded mines
Using a sugar solution, scientists in Croatia are training honeybees to associate the scent of TNT explosive with the scent of their food. They hope these bees could help find unexploded mines that are sometimes missed by de-mining and pose a threat to citizens. Theoretically, heat-seeking cameras would follow the bees as they gathered around areas that smell of TNT. Go bees!
A 2-year-old boy in Asheboro, N.C. was shot Saturday after locating an unsecured gun in his family's home, the Courier-Tribune reported.
The boy reportedly found the gun in his parents' bedroom and put it in his mouth.
Either the US has the most suicidal toddlers in the world, or something else.
Tornadoes Hit the Middle of the US: One person has died, 21 are injured, here is a photo of a wrecked mobile home park.
Car Bomb Attacks Hit Across Iraq: At least 54 people have died, nearly 200 are injured, no group has yet claimed responsibility.
China Starts Hacking Us Again: According to the NYT, "Unit 61398, whose well-guarded 12-story white headquarters on the edges of Shanghai became the symbol of Chinese cyberpower, is back in business."
Pedestrian Found Dead on Dearborn: Here is a sentence that can enrage and depress us all: "Police believe a 34-year-old pedestrian found dead in Seattle early Sunday morning was hit and dragged by a vehicle and left for dead." That's fucking it. Ban cars forever.
Tim Burgess: Dropped out of the mayor's race on Friday, in case you missed it.
Poverty Hits the Suburbs: Where the safety net has a giant white-picket-fence-shaped hole in it, as social services still focus on cities. "During the 2000s, [poverty] grew twice as fast in suburban areas as in cities, with more than 16 million poor people now living in the nation's suburbs—more than in urban or rural areas," reports NPR.
Yahoomblr: It's happening. Paul reported the predictions last week, now we know for sure that Yahoo will indeed be buying Tumblr, for $1.1 billion in cash. They actually "promise not to screw it up" in a statement.
Good Morning! It might be kind of crappy outside this week. Unless you like cloudy with a chance of showers, which I hear a lot of you do.
How the White House Investigates Leaks: An in-depth look from the Washington Post:
They used security badge access records to track the reporter’s comings and goings from the State Department, according to a newly obtained court affidavit. They traced the timing of his calls with a State Department security adviser suspected of sharing the classified report. They obtained a search warrant for the reporter’s personal e-mails.
Trikes for Beers! On Queen Anne this weekend, grown-ups tricycled. Go see the pictures. You can totally lose your two front teeth this way if you do it right. Wait, I mean wrong.
SNL Sends Stefon Off in Style: Along with Seth Meyers...
For your pleasure, "deleted and alternate scenes are chronologically arranged":
A Houston teen’s dream has come true. Through the efforts of his father, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and a little good ol’ fashioned luck, he was able to shoot and kill an 800-pound, 14-foot alligator. Thrilled Braxton Bielski, 18, hooked the gator — which had somehow managed to live up to 50 years, reportedly — using raw chicken, then unloaded his shotgun on the creature, turning a living swamp dweller into a dead record setter.Really, what kind of teenager dreams of killing an alligator? And what's so impressive about killing even a big alligator? What the animal kingdom wants to know is when will humans get enough of their success? We should be bored with our triumph by now. We should instead be alarmed by the fact that even the mighty tiger, the tiger will all its sharp teeth and force has been pushed to the brink of extinction by our endless business. Humans need to get over themselves.
This should come as no surprise...
[M]ost of the lawmakers and pundits today decrying the use of public resources against a White House’s political opponents had little – if anything – to say about equally troubling revelations about the Bush administration’s deployment of public resources against its opponents. In fact, conservatives said so little back then that Fox News apparently doesn’t even know (or is pretending not to know) the Bush administration used the IRS in the same way the Obama adminstration allegedly did.Maybe Obama's greatest fault is that he has continued (rather than broken with) many of Bush's shadowy programs and political tactics. But here is the greatest scandal of all: Bush visited more black African countries during his first term than Obama did during his.
Bush’s use of the IRS was but one part of that larger assault. As my Salon colleague Alex Seitz-Wald notes today in greater detail, in 2005, Bush’s IRS began what became an extensive two-year investigation into a Pasadena church after an orator dared to speak out against President Bush’s Iraq War. Not coincidentally, the Los Angeles Times reports that the church targeted just so happened to be “one of Southern California’s largest and most liberal congregations.” That IRS church audit came a year after it launched a near-identical attack on the NAACP after the civil rights organization criticized various Bush administration policies.
President Barack Obama "will travel" to Africa, US Secretary of State John Kerry declared Wednesday in remarks to a US congressional committee.One more scandal: On this trip, Obama will not visit his father's country.
He offered no details regarding the timing and itinerary of the trip.
As concern grows in Washington about China's role in sub-Saharan Africa, pressure has been mounting for President Obama to pay more direct attention to the continent.
The first African-American President spent less than one day in Black Africa during his first visit in office four years ago. President Obama had made a stopover in Ghana six months after his inauguration in January 2009.
The tip about the African trip came from Lark.
The police say that Elliot Morales, 33, trailed and taunted two men, yelling antigay slurs and asking one of them, “You want to die tonight?”
The police say it was the other man, Mark Carson, 32, who died after Mr. Morales fired a single bullet from a revolver.
On Sunday, the police filed murder and weapons charges against Mr. Morales, and several lesbian and gay groups made plans for a march on Monday to the scene of the shooting.
According to The New York Times, Morales's sister says "he was under the influence" on Friday. According to police, in addition to the revolver, a Serbian-made assault weapon was found in the home Morales had been staying in.