Record number of women nominated in Congressional races

Democrats and Republicans have nominated women as candidates in a record 181 U.S. Senate and House races that will be decided in November’s general election, the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University said on Thursday.

The number of women nominated for U.S. House seats surged to 163 for the November election, breaking the previous record of 141 in 2004, the Center said.

The parties nominated 18 women for U.S. Senate seats, compared with the 2004 record of 14.

Debbie Walsh, the Center’s director, said the increase in nominations for congressional seat was the biggest since 1992, which was dubbed the “Year of the Woman…Many of the same factors are in play: the crucial first election after reapportionment and redistricting, news events underscoring the need for women’s voices in policymaking, and a presidential election year generating political excitement.”

About 70 percent of the women were nominated by the Democratic Party.

Gee. Anyone surprised by the difference between parties?

Dumb crook of the day!

Miami Beach police say David Weber’s first mistake was breaking into a car in a parking garage Monday night in order to quench an insatiable thirst for beer with the help of someone else’s credit card.

But, police said, his second, and by far more critical, mistake was walking into The Clevelander just before midnight and giving the card to a bartender — who noticed that he’d just been handed his own credit card.

After the initial shock wore off, the bartender had security call police, who charged Weber with credit card fraud and theft.

Weber, 53 and homeless, said he found the card on the ground, according to police.

He was booked…into Miami-Dade County jail.

Where he should stay for a while. Whether he wishes to or not.

Mitt’s Major Meltdown!

Mitt Romney broke our deal…Perhaps he didn’t know he’d made it, although, really, I thought it was pretty clear.

He could do anything he wanted during this campaign as long as he sent out signals that once he got in the White House he was not likely to be truly crazy.

We, in return, were going to be able to continue with our normal sleeping patterns through the fall.

It didn’t seem to be a lot to ask, but when the crisis in the Middle East flared up, Romney turned out to have no restraining inner core. All the uneasy feelings you got when he went to London and dissed the Olympic organizers can now come into full bloom. Feel free to worry about anything. That he’d declare war on Malta. Lock himself in a nuclear missile silo and refuse to come out until there’s a tax cut. Hand the country over to space aliens.

Here is the Republican candidate for president of the United States on Wednesday, explaining why he broke into a moment of rising international tension and denounced the White House as “disgraceful” for a mild statement made by the American Embassy in Cairo about the importance of respecting other people’s religions:

“They clearly — they clearly sent mixed messages to the world. And — and the statement came from the administration — and the embassy is the administration — the statement that came from the administration was a — was a statement which is akin to apology and I think was a — a — a severe miscalculation.”

Feel free to reread this when you’re staring at the ceiling at 4 a.m…

The one big advantage to being a boring candidate is that you give the appearance of calm and stability. But, suddenly, Romney seemed to want to go for a piquant mélange of dull and hotheaded…When asked whether he was too quick on the attack, loyalists were supposed to say: “No. It is never too soon to stand up for American values and interests…”

Two months to go and we’re rethinking our presumption that the Republican primary voters picked the most stable option.

The Party-formerly-known-as-Republican continues to devolve as dramatically as their creationist roots would predict.

With little reliance on fact, why not lie? With little attention paid to history, why not contrive new tales of capitulation? With no intent at bi-partisan legislation, political solutions to the economy they nearly destroyed, why should they support the efforts of our diplomatic service to calm a dangerous situation – especially when you believe that a worsening economy and doom and gloom abroad are your only hope for getting elected?

Gail Collins’ Op-Ed piece will likely go unread by conservative pundits. After all, she’s a woman.

Split in Mexico’s Zetas drug gang raises fears of bloody war

Los Zetas started life in the late 1990s as enforcers for the Gulf Cartel. Tasked with protecting the cartel’s drug-trafficking empire, the Zetas were primarily comprised of defectors from an elite unit of the Mexican army called El Gafe.

By 2005, they had broken away from their paymasters and started to run criminal enterprises themselves.

Now, it seems the group has split again, this time internally.

One faction is led by one of the founders of Los Zetas, a former Gafe officer called Heriberto Lazcano, alias “El Lazca” or “Z-3”.

The other is led by Miguel Angel Trevino, known as “Z-40”, a former member of the Gulf Cartel who is thought to be responsible for some of the most heinous and bloodthirsty crimes committed by the Zetas.

Mexico’s Attorney General Marisela Morales recently confirmed that reports from government intelligence sources indicated that the Zetas were now at war with themselves…

Some local crime reporters have pointed to recent “narco-mantas” – banners put up in public places by drug gangs – accusing Heriberto Lazcano of betrayal as further proof of the split…

Meanwhile, the prospect of Zeta-on-Zeta violence fills people in some Mexican states with dread

The Zetas already operate like a franchise and are involved in more than 20 different criminal activities, from extortion to human trafficking…

“The Zetas as a brand-name may survive. But the changes within that organisation will be tremendous,” Steven Dudley predicts.

The worry is that a lot more blood will be spilled along the way.

RTFA for disgusting details. Decades of corruption in every aspect of Mexico’s politics and bureaucracy appear to have made any hope of cleaning-up that country a dream deferred.

Distracted motorists have the most accidents at Stonehenge

Distracted motorists have more accidents passing Stonehenge than any other British landmark…

Over a third of drivers, 34 per cent, have had a prang or near miss in the UK as a result of taking their eyes off the road to admire a view…And an admiring 14 per cent have slammed on the brakes to get a longer look – typically reducing their speed by 27 mph…

The Angel of the North, in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, is the second most dangerous landmark and the Blackpool Tower, in Lancs, third.

A captivated 18 per cent and 12 per cent of motorists find their eyes drifting towards these sites as they pass…

Just over one in ten of these drivers, 11 per cent, have had or nearly had an accident at these two beauty spots.

Janet Connor, from MORE TH>N, said: “Travel guides, friends and family often encourage us to take the scenic route…But until now the perils of admiring the world beyond the windscreen have not been fully explored.

The UK is blessed with some amazing sights but motorists need to keep their eyes on the road and resist the lure of staring at them while driving…To avoid having an accident, park-up and enjoy the view safely.”

I remember when a Boston hotel built a swimming pool that immediately overlooked the I95 Freeway right in the heart of the city. There were so many accidents the first month it was in use – from male drivers ogling the babes in bikinis – they were ordered by the city to close it back down.