Obama birth certificate remains an issue for nutballs

The YouTube video of an out-of-control woman yelling and screaming at Republican Congressman Mike Castle’s town hall meeting in Delaware, demanding to see the birth certificate of President Barack Obama, is utterly hilarious.

To watch others cheer her insanity, and then boo the congressman who says the president is an American, shows you that we have a serious problem with mental illness in this country.

The nut jobs that continue to promote this story are wacky, right-wing radio and TV talk shows hosts and no-credibility bloggers. They have latched onto this story like bloodsucking leeches, and actually want us to believe this story has legs.

Last week, in a suit filed by perennial presidential loser, Alan Keyes, they even tried to claim a court victory after a federal district judge in California asked to listen to the merits of their case. I’m sure he simply wanted to see for himself how delusional they are…

President Obama is right to ignore these losers. They are right up there with Holocaust deniers like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and the people who insist that the landing on the moon was done in a television studio.

Conspiracy theorists are everywhere. It’s just that today, we have to deal with the Internet and all the mess that is disseminated in the name of so-called transparency.

So nut jobs, keep it coming. In such difficult times, we all need a good laugh every now and then, and you provide great comic fodder.

RTFA. Follow the rendezvous of racists, tea-party trollops and Birch Society leftovers.

My only disagreement with Roland Martin on this question is – I prefer to use the designation “nutballs” for these credulous fools.

Why you didn’t get the job!


“I’m not wanted in this state.”

“How many young women work here?”

“I didn’t steal it; I just borrowed it.”

“You touch somebody and they call it sexual harassment!”

Believe it or not, the above statements weren’t overhead in bars or random conversations — they were said in job interviews…

We asked hiring managers to share the craziest things they’ve heard from applicants in an interview. Some are laugh-out-loud hysterical, others are jaw dropping — the majority are both. To be sure, they will relieve anyone who has ever said something unfortunate at a job interview — and simply amuse the rest of you.

“I have a problem with authority.” – Carrie Rocha, COO of HousingLink

“If I get an offer, how long do I have before I have to take the drug test?” – Bolzan

“When you do background checks on candidates, do things like public drunkenness arrests come up?” – Bolzan

“I was fired from my last job because they were forcing me to attend anger management classes.” – Smith

“You should probably know I mud wrestle on the weekends.” – Venne

Wander through the list. You may find yourself in there.

U.S. airline apologizes for frisking former president of India

Do I really need to go to New York?
Daylife/Getty Images used by permission

Continental Airlines Wednesday apologized to former Indian president APJ Abdul Kalam for frisking him before a recent flight to New York.

The apology came a day after Indian civil aviation authorities lodged a police complaint against the U.S. carrier in New Delhi, accusing it of gross violation of Indian security protocols that forbid pre-embarkation body checks on a number of dignitaries, including former presidents…

“We have tendered a formal apology to Dr. Kalam and we sincerely hope he will fly with us again,” Continental said in a statement…

But it noted that the regulations of the TSA and its Indian equivalent, the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security, were sometimes incompatible.

“We hope the respective government authorities resolve these differences at the earliest in order to avoid any recurrence of this situation in the future,” the airline said.

After all, the whole world must recognize they are required to live by the rules and standards of the United States. If that includes the codified paranoia of the idiots at Homeland Security and the TSA – learn to live with it, folks. Our clowns politicians are in charge.

B&N, Plastic Logic to use AT&T network for new e-reader

Plastic Logic, which is still gestating its entry in the new market for electronic reading devices, is disclosing a little bit more about its upcoming product.

After announcing earlier this week that Barnes & Noble would manage its electronic book store, the company said Wednesday that AT&T’s 3G network will provide the mobile broadband connection for the device, which is due to go on sale at the beginning of next year.

The Mountain View, Calif., company declined to disclose any more information about the pricing, or whether it will charge consumers monthly for that wireless connectivity. Amazon.com’s Kindle accesses content through Sprint Nextel’s wireless network, although users are not charged for the service and many probably do not even know their Kindle uses Sprint to download books and access the Web.

The Plastic Logic Reader, the size of a regular piece of paper, will be slightly larger than the Kindle DX and sport a touch-screen. Plastic Logic says the device will be targeted at business users, which typically suggests a higher price and the need to lure more affluent customers.

Unlike the Kindle, the Plastic Logic Reader will also be able to access Wi-Fi hotspots.

That last sentence pretty much guarantees AT&T’s 3G access will require a monthly charge.

For publishers who want it, think they need it, the device is DRM-enabled. But, not required. The Reader and the communications system supplying it allow for self-publishing which can be a plus for many writers and editors.

Frankly, I’m looking forward to trying one – sooner or other.

Bush-era Congress buried cell phone safety study

In 2003, researchers at a federal agency proposed a long-term study of 10,000 drivers to assess the safety risk posed by cellphone use behind the wheel. They sought the study based on evidence that such multitasking was a serious and growing threat on America’s roadways.

But such an ambitious study never happened. And the researchers’ agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, decided not to make public hundreds of pages of research and warnings about the use of phones by drivers — in part, officials say, because of concerns about angering Congress.

Now, the full body of research is being made public for the first time by two consumer advocacy groups, which filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit for the documents. The Center for Auto Safety and Public Citizen provided a copy to The New York Times, which is publishing the documents on its Web site…

Critics say that rationale and the failure of the Transportation Department, which oversees the highway agency, to more vigorously pursue distracted driving has cost lives and allowed to blossom a culture of behind-the-wheel multitasking.

We’re looking at a problem that could be as bad as drunk driving, and the government has covered it up,” said Clarence Ditlow, director of the Center for Auto Safety…

The highway safety researchers estimated that cellphone use by drivers caused around 955 fatalities and 240,000 accidents overall in 2002.

The researchers also shelved a draft letter they had prepared for Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta to send, warning states that hands-free laws might not solve the problem.

That letter said that hands-free headsets did not eliminate the serious accident risk. The reason: a cellphone conversation itself, not just holding the phone, takes drivers’ focus off the road, studies showed…

At the time, Congress had warned the agency not to use its research to lobby states. Dr. Runge said transit officials told him he could jeopardize billions of dollars of its financing if Congress perceived the agency had crossed the line into lobbying.

Which would be hilarious if we weren’t talking about stupidity while driving and the deaths resulting. This took place in the bowels of a federal administration that made lobbying an Olympic-class sport, after all.

RTFA. If you’re concerned with surviving your daily drive to-and-from work, there’s not much new. Multitasking [what a misnomer] drivers put your own life at risk and they obviously could care less for their own dull glimmer of humanity.

Judge rules that not all water that falls from heaven belongs to the city of Atlanta. Blasphemy!!

I could have posted pics of Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin
and Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue, but this water hog was cuter.

Governors of Georgia, Alabama and Florida had 19 years to reach to an agreement over how to share the water from Lake Lanier.

Now a federal judge has given Congress three years to work out the dispute….

The governors of Florida and Alabama said they’re willing to return to negotiations, but Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue seemed to sound a different note.

“I will use this opportunity not only to appeal the judge’s decision but, most importantly, to urge Congress to address the realities of modern reservoir usage,” Perdue said. “The judge’s ruling allows a three-year window for either congressional action or an agreement by the states, and we will work diligently with Georgia’s delegation and members of Congress to re-establish the proper use of federal reservoirs throughout the country.”

In his ruling Friday, U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson said it was illegal for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which operates Lake Lanier, to draw water from the lake to meet Atlanta’s needs. The Corps has been making such withdrawals for decades….

The court said Lanier was not intended to be Atlanta’s water supply, and the Corps may not use it that way unless Congress authorizes it to do so.

If Congress fails to pass a water-sharing bill in three years, Magnuson said he would order Atlanta’s withdrawals cut to 1970s levels, a measure that the judge acknowledged would be draconian.

Given the arrogance of the state of Georgia and the city of Atlanta on this and similar issues, my sympathy is limited. Whenever the subject of overdevelopment and poor planning is raised, noses are raised high in the air as if citizens are little school children incapable of comprehending adult issues. Now a federal judge has ruled that Atlanta has essentially been stealing water all of these years. Good for him. Maybe the governor and the mayor of Atlanta will negotiate more like grown-ups now.

Can we cut through the scientific hocus pocus and discuss what this solar eclipse really means? It means WE’RE DOOMED!

The longest solar eclipse in this century is scheduled to become visible on the west coast of India at dawn on Wednesday (NASA has images and charts showing where the eclipse will be visible and when).

The event is drawing scientists and eclipse enthusiasts from around the world, eager for a truly once in a lifetime experience. But for millions of Indians, the rare astronomical event is a source of dread.

The pending eclipse has become a stage where fact and myth, modern science and Hindu mythology are competing for public acceptance….

For outsiders, the extent to which superstition still figures in personal decisions may be a surprise.

For many Indians of all classes, astrology is an active and vital part of everyday life. Couples consult astrologers about auspicious days to marry. The days deemed to be most fortuitous can sometimes seem like citywide holidays, with scores of marriages filling the city with the wail of brass bands and the thump of fireworks – both common features at Indians’ routinely elaborate wedding ceremonies….

Indian soothsayers have warned that pregnant women should cover the windows and stay indoors on Wednesday, lest the dark forces associated with the eclipse deform their unborn children. Astrologers in India have warned of impending terrorist attacks, natural disasters, and civil wars too.

Hindu mythology blames eclipses on the demon Rahu – who is variously depicted as a snake or a dragon or a disembodied head – who swallows the sun.

Fortunately our western society has been cleansed for the most part of superstition. Thank God we are washed in the blood of the lamb.

Tracing Michelle Obama’s slave roots

In many places across the South you can walk in the footsteps of slaves, and if you understand the history, it is not a happy journey. The same is true at Friendfield Plantation outside Georgetown, South Carolina.

It’s not exactly “Gone With the Wind,” but what makes this overgrown 3,300 acres of marsh and pine trees stand out is this: The family of first lady Michelle Obama believes her great-great grandfather was held as a slave here and labored in the mosquito-infested rice fields.

It makes Friendfield Plantation a symbol of something more than servitude. It’s the symbol of something that’s never happened before, one important segment of an American family’s journey from the humiliation of slavery to the very top of the nation’s ruling class.

It’s not a museum. It’s just private land, still with shadows of its past. Friendfield’s most distinctive historical feature, perhaps, is the dirt road known as Slave Street.

Six white-washed little shacks are all that remain of the slave quarters, even though rows of these houses once stood on the property. About 350 slaves lived here during the 19th century…

They would have been crowded: probably one or two families living in a space smaller than a modern-day garage…

All that’s known about Jim Robinson’s life comes from the few remaining records that mention him. Slaves weren’t documented as individuals in the census, nor in life and death certificates. They were property, not people.

It probably never crossed Jim Robinson’s mind, as a slave in a white-washed cabin, that one day his great-great granddaughter would be living in a white house so very, very different from his own.

RTFA. Well done. A few talented people still remain at CNN – a story worth reading, reading to your kids, as well.