Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Bernie Sanders won their respective primary elections in New Hampshire today. Trump, with about a third of the votes, prevailed over John Kasich, with Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush in a virtual tie for third as of 10:30 p.m. Sanders won 58% of the Democrat vote, to Hillary Clinton's 40%; Clinton's concession speech was well-received and conciliatory, suggesting that the ground underfoot has definitively moved left.
Somewhere, Chris Christie is bullying an underling, burning himself out so he can quit without looking like a total asshole on TV. His greatest achievement in the race, nuking Marco Rubio's surge from orbit, offers a delicious irony: no-one has ever so completely proven that debates matter, yet gained so little from having done so. There are now many "Marco Rubio robot" nicknames in circulation. The correct one is Rubot.
Meanwhile, in old Hampshire, English coastguards have told children to stop playing on the beach during storms, and a legendary local stray cat that lived at a bus stop died of "horrific injuries," having been run over, possibly by a bus.
Update: beaten to it by Xeni. Read the rest
According to this 1998 commencement address Ben Carson gave at Andrews University, the "flagship educational institution of the Seventh-day Adventist Church," he says that the "scientists" who claim that extraterrestrials who built the pyramids are mistaken. And they weren't burial chambers for the Pharoas either. Rather, the pyramids were brilliantly engineered to store grain. From CNN:
"My own personal theory is that Joseph built the pyramids to store grain," Carson said in taped remarks first reported by Buzzfeed on Wednesday. "Now all the archeologists think that they were made for the pharaohs' graves. But, you know, it would have to be something awfully big if you stop and think about it."
On Wednesday, asked about his belief after a book-signing in Florida, Carson stood by his theory and explained it.
"The pyramids were made in a way that they had hermetically sealed compartments," he said. "You would need that if you were trying to preserve grain for a long period of time."
Donald Trump commented on Carson's theory about the pyramids on Thursday during an appearance on MSNBC, saying, "I'll have to put that into my repertoire when I talk about Ben...That was a strange deal."
According to the Book of Genesis, Joseph stored large amounts of grain to feed the people of Egypt during a famine.
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"Go fuck yourselves, the lot of you — you sad, attention-grabbing, power-hungry little men," Stipe said, responding to Trump playing REM's hit "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" at a rally yesterday. Read the rest
Donald Trump earns roughly $250,000 per speech, and owes $265 million (maybe more) in debt. Read the rest
Trump today: “I’ll win the Latino vote because I’ll create jobs. I’ll create jobs and the Latinos will have jobs they didn’t have, I’ll do better on that vote than anybody, I will win that vote." Read the rest
"I agree with Donald that America is dead--buried in a coffin, in salted earth with our enemies pissing on it and laughing. And Donald Trump is the only man who can--excuse me, I’m just moved--I’m physically moved by the knowledge that Donald Trump is the only man who can dig up the corpse of that nation and marry it.” Read the rest
Adherents' Alien Rival
Darn All Her Naiveties
I Ate Venal Hardliners
Handles Narrative Lie
Ha, Irrelevant Denials
Air Leaves Hinterland
Alien Narratives Held
Reverential Anil Dash
BONUS anagram, courtesy of Boris Magocsi: "Donald Trump is an angram of Turd Mop Land" Read the rest
"If group prayer can heal people, it can change an election," reads this website
urging you to join a mass prayer that will elect Mitt Romney to office. Oh, fine; it's a parody site. (via @joeljohnson) Read the rest
David Siegel, the billionaire CEO of the highly profitable Florida-based Westgate Resorts timeshare company, has sent a letter to all his employees implying that they'll all get fired if Obama is elected. Concerning Mr Siegel, ThinkProgress notes "Siegel earned national notoriety this year for his quest to build the biggest house in America, 'a sprawling, 90,000-square-foot mansion inspired by Versailles.'"
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As most of you know our company, Westgate Resorts, has continued to succeed in spite of a very dismal economy. There is no question that the economy has changed for the worse and we have not seen any improvement over the past four years. In spite of all of the challenges we have faced, the good news is this: The economy doesn’t currently pose a threat to your job. What does threaten your job however, is another 4 years of the same Presidential administration. Of course, as your employer, I can’t tell you whom to vote for, and I certainly wouldn’t interfere with your right to vote for whomever you choose. In fact, I encourage you to vote for whomever you think will serve your interests the best.
However, let me share a few facts that might help you decide what is in your best interest.
So where am I going with all this? It’s quite simple. If any new taxes are levied on me, or my company, as our current President plans, I will have no choice but to reduce the size of this company. Rather than grow this company I will be forced to cut back.
Marilyn sez, "The Democrats criticized Bush for suspension of civil liberties and guaranteed them in their 2008 platform. In their 2012 platform, those guarantees have all been erased." Trevor Timm from the Electronic Frontier Foundation has the whole sad story in Al Jazeera:
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Listening to Obama's famous keynote address from the 2004 DNC - his springboard onto the national stage - Obama sounded like an entirely different politician. Then he argued, "If there's an Arab-American family being rounded-up, without benefit of an attorney, or due process," he said, "that threatens my civil liberties."
Ironically, on the same day Obama gave his latest DNC speech this year, a federal judge in DC issued a ruling excoriating his administration's recent decision to unilaterally restrict Guantanamo detainees' access to attorneys, saying "this country is not one ruled by executive fiat".
In fact, his administration's position on due process has been the most controversial of his presidency. Last year, he signed the National Defense Authorisation Act (NDAA), which contains provision authorising the indefinite detention of terrorism suspects that could potentially be used against American citizens. Another federal judge recently blocked the implementationof that law, saying it violated both the free speech and due process clauses of the Constitution. The Obama administration has predictably appealed.
In-depth coverage of the US presidential election
When it came to defending US drone strikes that have extrajudicially killed at least three American citizens in Yemen - including a 16 year old who has never even been accused of terrorism - the administration has tried to change the definition of "due process" all together.
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Science Debate is a group that's working to get political candidates in the United States actually talking publicly about issues of science and technology policy. In 2008, they tried (and failed) to get Barak Obama and John McCain to agree to a live, televised science debate. But they did get both candidates to send in written answers to 14 key questions.
This election cycle, Science Debate sent out a new set of 14 questions—all chosen from a crowdsourced list. Today, they announced that they'd gotten answers back from both Obama and Mitt Romney. You can compare the candidates side-by-side at the Science Debate website. I have to say that, while I disagree with a lot of Romney's conclusions, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of thought and time his staff clearly put into writing some very long and detailed responses.
Perhaps most surprising was his response to a question about climate change. Instead of attempting to flatly deny the evidence, Mitt Romney has apparently moved on to acknowledging that climate change is happening—while simultaneously overplaying the uncertainty surrounding specific risks, and claiming that even if climate change is a big problem there's nothing we can really do about it anyway ... because China.
Personally, I think that's pretty interesting. Climate scientists, and the journalists who write about them, have been talking, anecdotally, about seeing this exact rhetorical shift happening in conservative circles. It seems that the Republican presidential nominee is now one of the people who acknowledge climate change exists, but would still rather not take any decisive steps to deal with it. Read the rest
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Tampa, Florida web developer Jon Gales mapped the city's new network of downtown surveillence cameras installed for the Republican convention, to empower fellow citizens to become aware of the encroaching surveillance society. City authorities have not responded to his queries about what will happen to the cameras once the convention ends.
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Nicko from the Sunlight Foundation sez,
The Sunlight Foundation recently launched a free mobile app to help voters better know who is buying political ads this election year. Ad Hawk available for iPhone and Android, listens to campaign, super PAC and issue ads on the TV or radio and then lists information about who placed the ads, their campaign finance profile and other information.
Ad Hawk is simple to use: just listen, identify and learn. When you see a political ad on TV or hear one on the radio, open the app to have Ad Hawk start listening to the ad. In less than 30 seconds, Ad Hawk will create an audio fingerprint using open-source technology and start searching our database of thousands of ads for a match. We identify new ads by monitoring media reports and the YouTube channels of political groups and campaigns. When Ad Hawk finds a match, users will get information on their phone about how much money the ad's sponsor received or spent, where the ad is on the air and media reports about the candidate or political group.
Ad Hawk: Identify Political Ads As They Air
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