Twinkies set to return to supermarket shelves – I can hear teeth starting to rot already!


Twinkies will soon be making a triumphant return to store shelves, according to Hostess’ website.

The company, which went bankrupt in 2012 and is under new management, is touting the return on July 15 as “the sweetest comeback in the history of ever.”

Hostess is now owned by the private equity firms Apollo Global Management and Metropoulos & Co.

“America wanted Hostess back — they wanted the original. Very soon consumers will once again be able to enjoy Twinkies, CupCakes and other great Hostess snack cakes. A comeback by any other name could never be as sweet,” Daren Metropoulos, principal of Metropoulos & Co., said in a statement to ABC News…

Rich Seban, president of Hostess, told the AP that prices for the cakes will remain the same: A box of 10 Twinkies will cost $3.99.

You could just eat $3.99 worth of sugar with a spoon and get more value.

He also said that the new Hostess company will invest in new products, something the old company was criticized for not doing.

He told the AP that the company is looking to expand with gluten-free, added fiber, low sugar and low sodium products.

They plan to offer additional products not as sugary, not as crappy, not as lacking in dietary fiber, not as many chemical flavors. In other words, stuff better for you than frigging Twinkies.

Yes, I have tried a Twinkie. In 1959. I see no need to repeat the experiment.

For Snowden, pizza and an exit strategy

Empty seat where reporters expected to find Edward Snowden on a flight to Cuba

For Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who has acknowledged leaking numerous documents about American surveillance operations around the world, the path to a sudden departure from Hong Kong late Sunday began over a dinner days before of a large pizza, fried chicken and sausages, washed down with Pepsi.

Albert Ho, one of Mr. Snowden’s lawyers, said that before the Tuesday night dinner began, Mr. Snowden insisted that everyone hide their cellphones in the refrigerator of the home where he was staying, to block any eavesdropping. Then began a two-hour conversation during which Mr. Snowden was deeply dismayed to learn that he could spend years in prison without access to a computer during litigation over whether he would be granted asylum here or surrendered to the United States, Mr. Ho said…

The outcome of that meeting, Mr. Ho said, was a decision by Mr. Snowden to have Mr. Ho pose two questions to the Hong Kong government: would he be released on bail if he were detained in Hong Kong at the request of the United States, and would the Hong Kong government interfere if Mr. Snowden tried to go to the airport and leave Hong Kong instead.

A person with detailed knowledge of the Hong Kong government’s deliberations said that the government had been delighted to receive the questions. Leung Chun-ying, the chief executive, and his top advisers had been struggling through numerous meetings for days, canceling or postponing most other meetings, while trying to decide what to do in response to an American request for Mr. Snowden’s detention, even as public opinion in Hong Kong seemed to favor protecting the fugitive…

The intermediary told Mr. Snowden Friday night that the government could not predict what Hong Kong’s independent judiciary would do, but that serving jail time while awaiting trial was a possibility. The intermediary also said that the Hong Kong government would welcome Mr. Snowden’s departure, Mr. Ho and the person who insisted on anonymity said. Both declined to identify the intermediary.

The Hong Kong government said that it would not interfere with Mr. Snowden’s departure.

We know the rest up to today. His planned exit from Moscow to Cuba and Ecuador. But, his seat on the plane he was scheduled for – was empty.

Regardless, the details of decision-making in Hong Kong are fascinating – and put the lie to the Cold War bluster of politicians and pundits and obedient newspapers around the country. Even though this article comes from reporters on the scene, the NY TIMES also published one of their butt-kissing specials that “analyzes” the control that China must have had over the whole situation.

Read through all of this article. Interesting chronology pretty much free of agitprop.

Best news, this morning: Berlusconi guilty In underage sex trial

Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi has been found guilty of paying for sex with an underage prostitute.

The 76-year-old was sentenced to seven years in prison and banned from holding public office by a judge in Milan.

He had denied having sex with Karima El Mahroug, also known as Ruby the Heart Stealer, after what prosecutors claimed were erotic parties at his Milan mansion in 2010.

Berlusconi was also accused of calling a police station to pressure for Miss El Mahroug’s release from custody when she was arrested for theft.

The state prosecutor asked for a six-year sentence because of the severity of corruption in Italian political life that Berlusconi represented. The judge gave him seven years!


Feds sued over copout policy on killing endangered wildlife

Mexican Gray Wolf

Environmental groups are taking the Justice Department to court over a policy that prohibits prosecuting individuals who kill endangered wildlife unless it can be proved that they knew they were targeting a protected animal.

Critics charge that the 15-year-old McKittrick policy provides a loophole that has prevented criminal prosecution of dozens of individuals who killed grizzly bears, highly endangered California condors and whooping cranes as well as 48 federally protected Mexican wolves.

The policy stems from a Montana case in which Chad McKittrick was convicted under the Endangered Species Act for killing a wolf near Yellowstone National Park in 1995. He argued that he was not guilty because he thought he was shooting a wild dog.

McKittrick appealed the conviction and lost, but the Justice Department nonetheless adopted a policy that became the threshold for taking on similar cases: prosecutors must prove that the individual knowingly killed a protected species.

The lawsuit charges that the policy sets a higher burden of proof than previously required, arguing, “The DOJ’s McKittrick policy is a policy that is so extreme that it amounts to a conscious and express abdication of DOJ’s statutory responsibility to prosecute criminal violations of the ESA as general intent crimes.”

Ignorance of the law excuses no one is a long-standing legal principle which means that a person who is unaware of a law may not escape liability for violating that law. Otherwise, all a criminal would need to be excused from responsibility is to claim – “I didn’t know that”.

A crap excuse enshrined by politicians to cover for hunters and ranchers who hate the reintroduction of native species like wolves to rebalance wilderness ecology perpetually under threat.