Thursday, December 30, 2010

That's insulting

Calling David Williams a RINO is insulting to RINOs.

2010 in Film

While I am not a professional critic, I’m posting my awards for this year’s crop in film. As for the top ten films this year, for the most part, I am in agreement with the American Film Institute on the top of the crop this year. However, I’m doing animated movies seperately as it was very hard to choose between How To Train Your Dragon and Toy Story 3.

Top Ten Films of 2010

The Social Network
Black Swan
The Fighter
127 Hours
The Town
True Grit
Winter’s Bone
The Kids Are Alright
The King’s Speech

Best Animated Feature (Tie): How To Train Your Dragon and Toy Story 3
Best Director: David Fincher, The Social Network
Best Original Screenplay: Christopher Nolan, Inception
Best Adapted Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network

Best Comic Book Movie: Kick-Ass


Best Actor: Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
Best Actress: Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, The Fighter
Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Breakthrough Performance in Drama: Jennifer Lawrence, Winter’s Bone


Best Actor: Ben Stiller, Greenberg
Best Actress: Anne Hathaway, Love and Other Drugs
Best Supporting Actor: Mark Wahlberg, Date Night
Best Supporting Actress: Eva Mendes, The Other Guys
Breakthrough Performance in Comedy: Emma Stone, Easy A
Surprising Performance in a Comedy from a Dramatic Actor: Mark Wahlberg, Date Night and The Other Guys
Actor Most Likely to Be In Every Movie This Year: T.J. Miller (She’s Out of My League, How To Train Your Dragon, Get Him to the Greek, Unstoppable, Yogi Bear, and Gulliver’s Travels)

Favorite Twelve Comedies of 2010

The Other Guys
Get Him to the Greek
Hot Tub Time Machine
She’s Out of My League
Due Date
Date Night
Love and Other Drugs
Easy A
Cop Out
Going the Distance
Little Fockers

I was unable to limit it to only 10 movies. I just couldn’t.

I had such high expectations for How Do You Know before the movie came out. Unfortunately, it was overlong despite a star-studded cast and James L. Brooks' involvement with writing and directing the movie.


The Tooth Fairy
The Spy Next Door
Cats and Dogs 2
The Bounty Hunter
Life As We Know It
(I didn't see it after reading several reviews).

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Kennedy Center Honors - A Tribute to Paul McCartney (Set List)

A tip of the cap and a wag of the finger to Alec Baldwin for that hilarious introduction to the former Beatle, Sir Paul McCartney.

Now, here's the set list. Given the discography and the time frame of the show on CBS, there were several medleys.

No Doubt - Hello, Goodbye and Penny Lane
Dave Grohl and Norah Jones - Maybe I'm Amazed
Steven Tyler - She Came in Through the Bathroom Window, Golden Slumbers, Carry That Weight, and The End (It was an abbreviated medley of the main 16 minute medley featured on Abbey Road but hey, I was singing along...)
James Taylor and Mavis Staples - Let It Be
Everyone - The Na Na Na Na's of "Hey Jude"

I was impressed with the No Doubt renditions. Gwen Stefani has a great voice.

Exclusive Interview with Adam Edelen

Daniel Solzman: Thank you for joining The Kentucky Democrat today. You served as Chief of Staff to Governor Beshear from July 2008 up until a few weeks ago? What did the position entail?
Adam Edelen: As the Governor’s Chief of Staff I was responsible for the day to day operations of the Governor’s office. Specifically, I managed communications, internal and external outreach, logistics, scheduling, constituent relations -- essentially, the apparatus of government that was focused on promoting the Governor’s agenda.

DS: When did you decide you wanted to run for State Auditor? Did you speak to the current state auditor, Crit Luallen, while you were making the decision to run?
AE:: I first had an interest in running for Auditor four years ago when there was wide speculation that Crit was going to run for Governor or some other office. So I’ve always been interested in running for auditor, because I think it marries nicely with the experiences that I’ve had in both the public and private sectors. I am excited about the opportunity and have talked to Crit on a number of occasions about her experience in the office and her views about the opportunities and obstacles the job entails. Crit has been a friend and mentor for fifteen years and the opportunity to build upon the historic success she has had in the auditor's office is the kind of opportunity I welcome.

DS: What did you do as Director of the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security? Did you work with Kentucky State Police?
AE:: For the first 5 or 6 months of the Beshear administration I served as Director of Homeland Security. In that role, my job was to make sure that Kentucky’s frontline responders had the training, resources, and equipment they needed to do their job. I worked very closely with the State Police and local emergency management responders-- red lights and blue lights alike-- fire, police, EMS folks, and it was a great job. I was brought in to bring a more strategic business like approach to the way we allocated training and equipment resources during a challenging time when the needs were getting bigger but the resources being provided from Washington were decreasing.It was an important opportunity for me to do more with less to make sure that the office was run efficiently and effectively and in a way that our frontline first responders were always protected.

DS: Between government, business, and civic activities, were you able to find the time to have free time?
AE:: You know I am the son of a farmer and my mother is a very hard worker as well. So I think I inherited a work ethic. I don’t have a lot of hobbies outside of work. I really enjoy spending time with my children, spend a lot of time as an outdoorsman. I really enjoy hunting, fishing, and reading, but a lot of those hobbies have fallen by the wayside as my focus remains my family and my work.

DS: What are the three most pressing issues facing Kentuckians today?
AE:: The two most critical challenges facing Kentucky are education and job creation, and they are very closely tied. Our ability as a State to make investments in these two areas represent our best ability to move forward as a people. But both are being limited by a political culture that far too often has tolerated waste, corruption, inefficiency, and a culture of low expectations. As State Auditor, I think I have a particular background, insight, and passion for making sure every tax dollar is spent efficiently, effectively, and honestly. By doing this, we can we ensure that taxpayer's hard-earned dollars are stretched to invest in job creation and education, which represents our best hope for moving Kentucky forward.

DS: On a related note, will we ever see expanded gaming in Kentucky?
AE:: For the sake of the horse industry, which is one of Kentucky’s signature industries, I certainly hope that we will see some form of expanding gaming in the near future. The industry provides 100,000 jobs to the people of Kentucky and is a core element of the external branding that we communicate to the world. I'm optimistic that we will be able to take important steps forward to keep Kentucky's entertainment dollars in Kentucky, all the while helping to support our signature industry.

DS: This is a tough time economically for the commonwealth. If elected as state auditor, what would your primary goals be to help the state through the current economy?
AE:: In an era like ours when families are literally huddled around kitchen tables trying to make ends meet and to figure out how they’re going to send their sons and daughters to college and afford healthcare, I think it’s important to have elected political leadership that takes a similar approach to protecting our tax dollars. Again, my focus as state auditor will be in making sure that every dollar is spent transparently, efficiently, honestly, and in such a way that maximizes our investments in job creation and education -- in other words, invested in our people.

DS: As a graduate of the University of Kentucky, any comments on the upcoming basketball season? There's certainly no comparison to last season's magical team.
AE:: I am very excited about this year’s UK basketball team, particularly as I don’t think we have seen this kind of ability to shoot from the perimeter since Pitino’s old run and gun team. So it’s fun to see UK with a shooting team. Let’s all keep our fingers crossed that we can get Enes Kanter or another big man down low to help balance out our offense. In terms of effort and terms of potential and promise, I’m very excited about these new young Cats and expect we'll do very well this year.

DS: Thank you again for joining us and keep up the good fight. Aside from the obligatory link to your campaign site, is there anything you would like to add?

I think this election -- particularly the auditor’s race, but a couple of others, as well -- represent an opportunity for the next generation of young people to step up and take more of a frontline role in determining the kind of future we want for Kentucky. Those of us with children and those of us beginning to make our careers have a lot of skin left in the game, and the people who have the opportunity to help fashion the future -- especially when you have so much at stake in it -- is an exciting opportunity. It's also why I encourage young people from across the spectrum in Kentucky to get involved in our campaign and others in 2011.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Rick Nelson files Bullshit Legislation

The blogosphere is outraged at the latest bill to be prefiled by Democratic State Representative Rick Nelson. There’s no doubt that he’s a pawn in Jim Gooch’s game to embarrass the Commonwealth of Kentucky further. Like Kentucky isn’t embarrassed enough in the national scene as it is?

We’ve seen Jim Bunning block unemployment benefits because he missed the Kentucky-South Carolina game in February.

Mitch McConnell cried on the Senate floor as he paid tribute to the retiring Judd Gregg but doesn't shed a tear in blocking the 9/11 First Responders bill so he can give tax cut extensions to the wealthiest one percent.

We’ve seen Rand Paul elected to the Senate.

We’ve seen the Kentucky state government announce that they will give taxpayer money to help finance the Creationist Theme Park, a mockery to religion in its own right.

We’ve seen a man forced to eat his own beard.

So, please excuse me if I am not fucking outraged enough at Rick Nelson. The man wants to silence those that publish comments anonymously. Maybe they are afraid to publically hurt someone under their own name? I don’t know.
AN ACT relating to information technology.

Create new sections of KRS Chapter 369 to establish definitions relating to Internet Web sites, blogs, and message boards; require registration by parties who post entries to these interactive services; require providers of these services to conspicuously identify the parties who post entries; require providers of these services to disclose, upon request, the names, addresses, and e-mail addresses of parties posting entries; establish penalties of $500 for first offense and $1,000 for each subsequent offense.
I’m not going to delete anything and I certainly will not disclose email addresses, etc. when I don’t even know that sort of thing!

Like I know their mailing address?!? No. Even if I did, I still wouldn’t give it away without their respective permission.

I’m not going to pay a fine. If this bullshit legislation passes the General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Steve Beshear, I’m sure several of us bloggers will fight it in a court of law. There’s a thing called freedom of speech. I’ll fight it in court if I must.

Law meets Superheroes

This is just too awesome. No really, it is that awesome. It's beyond awesome. It's legendary.There is a new blog called Law and the Multiverse: Superheroes, supervillains, and the law.
Superman’s heat vision a weapon? If so, would the Second Amendment protect his right to melt pistols and cook hamburgers with it?

You might not have thought to ask these questions. You might have, in other words, a life. But a new blog and the interest it is generating shows that there are people who look at an epic battle between superheroes and supervillains and really, really want to know who should be found liable for the broken buildings and shattered streets.
Just read the article!

Larry David thanks the Democrats

Larry David didn't even know the Democrats and President Obama cared so much about his wealth. He shares his initial reaction in the New York Times.

Jerry Abramson talks about Theme Park

Outgoing Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson was asked recently about state money going towards that horrible theme park that mocks religion.
On WFPL’s State of Affairs, Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson said the statues that would grant tax breaks to the proposed Ark Encounter theme park “cut both ways.” The state can’t deny the breaks outright because the park is religious. However, the park must follow all state operating, hiring and anti-discrimination laws in order to receive the breaks. When a caller asked whether he thought the park would hurt Kentucky’s image, Abramson said he likely share’s the caller’s logic, but the state can’t judge the park based on its image for the commonwealth.

That transitioned into a conversation about Louisville’s differences with the rest of the state.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Going to Cooperstown?

If you are planning to attend the Hall of Fame induction weekend, they've changed up the schedule for the upcoming inductions:
A new Saturday afternoon event during Hall of Fame Weekend will honor the annual award winners of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in a free event at historic Doubleday Field, highlighting the 2011 season schedule of special events announced by the Museum on Tuesday in Cooperstown.

The Hall of Fame Awards Presentation will salute the winners of the Ford C. Frick Award for baseball broadcasting excellence and the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for meritorious contributions to baseball journalism, with the presentation of the awards and speeches from the awardees at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 23 at Doubleday Field in Cooperstown.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Peace Process

Danny Ayalon, Israel's deputy minister of foreign affairs and the former ambassador to the U.S, wrote a brilliant article for the Los Angeles Times on how Palestinians must end the cycle of evasion and rejectionism. This is only an excerpt:
The breakdown of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks has predictably resulted in blame laid almost exclusively on Israel. However, events of the last 17 years — since Israeli-Palestinian peace talks began — demonstrate a different story about what has prevented peace.

Since the Oslo peace accords were signed in 1993, the Israeli position on the peace process has constantly progressed and evolved. That has been best enunciated by the generous offers made by Prime Ministers Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert in 2000 and 2008, respectively. Meeting nearly all of the Palestinian demands, these offers were rejected without further discussion or counteroffer.

The present Israeli government has accepted the principle of a two-states-for-two peoples solution. Israel has contributed to the improvement of the lives of Palestinian to the point where the West Bank's economic growth is greater than almost anywhere in the world; it has removed more than two-thirds of all security checkpoints and initiated a unilateral moratorium on construction in the settlements.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Yarmuth votes against tax cut extension compromise

Congressman John Yarmuth released a statement tonight after voting against the tax cut extension compromise.
Yarmuth Statement on Tax Cut Proposal

“The long-term costs of this bill are far more damaging to our nation than the short-term gains. Borrowing money to give tax cuts to the rich – tax cuts that are more than most families make in a year – is unconscionable. Economics shows this is a dead-end. History proves it would be disastrous. And basic morality dictates that our priorities should focus on making our economy work for everyone – not just the wealthy few.”

Two provisions of the proposal before the House are estimated to cost $114 billion, but would benefit only the wealthiest Americans. Tax cuts for the highest-income earners cost $91 billion over two years while a modification of the estate tax that would create new exemptions for just 6,600 of the wealthiest American families comes at a cost of $23 billion. All the costs of the bill are not paid for in the legislation.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Non-weather roundup of news...

Bon Jovi is headed to Israel!
Bon Jovi will perform in Israel in the coming year, the band's lead singer, Jon Bon Jovi, told Larry King on his talk show.

During an interview on CNN's "Larry King Live," Bon Jovi said the rock band would include Israel on its list of stops during its "The Circle" world tour in 2011. The group, which was at the height of its popularity in the 1980s, also will visit Greece for the first time.
Mel Gibson's anti-Semitism predates his DUI. Winona Ryder spoke with GQ for their January issue.
(A Mel Gibson anecdote: "I remember, like, fifteen years ago, I was at one of those big Hollywood parties. And he was really drunk. I was with my friend, who's gay. He made a really horrible gay joke. And somehow it came up that I was Jewish. He said something about 'oven dodgers,' but I didn't get it. I'd never heard that before. It was just this weird, weird moment. I was like, 'He's anti-Semitic and he's homophobic.' No one believed me!")
It's very sad that no one believed her. I will not see The Beaver and anyone that defends Mel Gibson's antics needs serious counseling. Following Mel's DUI and anti-Semitic remarks, I pledged to never see another Mel Gibson movie ever.

Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is on the defensive.
But the aside was pronounced by Henry Kissinger, a German-born Jew who fled Nazi horrors as a child and who has been honored by multiple Jewish organizations as one of Israel’s saviors during its darkest days, when he was secretary of state to President Nixon.

“If they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern,” Kissinger is heard saying on the latest batch of Nixon-era Oval Office tapes released by the Nixon Library.[...]

“The quotations ascribed to me in the transcript of the conversation with President Nixon must be viewed in the context of the time,” Kissinger wrote to JTA.

He and Nixon pursued the issue of Soviet Jewish emigration as a humanitarian matter separate from foreign policy issues in order to avoid questions of sovereignty and because normal diplomatic channels were closed, Kissinger wrote.

“By this method and the persistent private representation at the highest level we managed to raise emigration from 700 per year to close to 40,000 in 1972,” Kissinger wrote. “We disagreed with the Jackson Amendment, which made Jewish emigration a foreign policy issue. We feared that the Amendment would reduce emigration, which is exactly what happened. Jewish emigration never reached the level of 40,000 again until the Soviet Union collapsed. The conversation between Nixon and me must be seen in the context of that dispute and of our distinction between a foreign policy and a humanitarian approach.”[...]

Abraham Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, said that approach goes too far.

The ADL issued a statement saying that Kissinger’s comments show a “disturbing and even callous insensitivity toward the fate of Soviet Jews” and are a reminder that “even great individuals are flawed.” But, it noted, “Dr. Kissinger’s contributions to the safety and security of the U.S. and Israel have solidly established his legacy as a champion of democracy and as a committed advocate for preserving the well-being of the Jewish state of Israel."

Foxman elaborated in an interview with JTA.

“He worked in an atmosphere that was intimidatingly anti-Semitic toward Jews,” the ADL leader said of Kissinger. “We need to understand the intimidation under which it occurred.”
The EU won't recognize a unilateral Palestinian State.
The European Union will not recognize Palestinian statehood until an "appropriate" time, its Foreign Affairs Council said in a statement.

The 27 EU foreign ministers meeting Monday in Brussels issued the statement in response to a letter from Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat to EU foreign policy head Catherine Ashton asking the body to join those countries that already have recognized a unilaterally declared Palestinian state.

Argentina and Brazil announced their support last week of a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state.

"The EU commends the work of the Palestinian Authority in building the institutions of the future State of Palestine and reiterates its full support for their endeavors in this regard and the (Palestine Prime Minister Salam) Fayyad plan," read the EU Foreign Affairs Council's statement.

"[The council] reiterates its readiness, when appropriate, to recognize a Palestinian state," it added, saying that "urgent progress is needed towards a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict."

FOX News makes you stupid

A new study came out this week. FOX News viewers tend to be misinformed more so than those watching the other cable news channels.
World Public Opinion, a project managed by the Program on International Policy Attitudes at the University of Maryland, conducted a survey of American voters that shows that Fox News viewers are significantly more misinformed than consumers of news from other sources. What’s more, the study shows that greater exposure to Fox News increases misinformation.

So the more you watch, the less you know. Or to be precise, the more you think you know that is actually false. This study corroborates a previous PIPA study that focused on the Iraq war with similar results. And there was an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll that demonstrated the break with reality on the part of Fox viewers with regard to health care. The body of evidence that Fox News is nothing but a propaganda machine dedicated to lies is growing by the day.[...]

Here is a list of what Fox News viewers believe that just aint so:

•91 percent believe the stimulus legislation lost jobs
•72 percent believe the health reform law will increase the deficit
•72 percent believe the economy is getting worse
•60 percent believe climate change is not occurring
•49 percent believe income taxes have gone up
•63 percent believe the stimulus legislation did not include any tax cuts
•56 percent believe Obama initiated the GM/Chrysler bailout
•38 percent believe that most Republicans opposed TARP
•63 percent believe Obama was not born in the U.S. (or that it is unclear)[...]

By the way, the rest of the media was not blameless. CNN and the broadcast network news operations fared only slightly better in many cases. Even MSNBC, which had the best record of accurately informing viewers, has a ways to go before it can brag about it.

The conclusions in this study need to be disseminated as broadly as possible. Fox’s competitors need to report these results and produce ad campaigns featuring them. Newspapers and magazines need to publish the study across the country. This is big news and it is critical that the nation be advised that a major news enterprise is poisoning their minds.

This is not an isolated review of Fox’s performance. It has been corroborated time and time again. The fact that Fox News is so blatantly dishonest, and the effects of that dishonesty have become ingrained in an electorate that has been been purposefully deceived, needs to be made known to every American. Our democracy cannot function if voters are making choices based on lies. We have the evidence that Fox is tilting the scales and we must now make certain its corporate owners do not get away with it.

Bi-state Bridges authority approves tolls

Sad news today for commuters in Kentucky and Indiana.
The bi-state bridges authority has approved a financing plan that calls for tolls to pay for roughly half of the 4.1 billion dollar bridges project. The move has inspired an opposition group to reach out to the Kentucky General Assembly for help blocking tolls.

The financing plan isn’t yet complete. For example, it doesn’t say which bridges will be tolled, and the authority needs federal approval to toll existing bridges. Shawn Reilly with the group Say No To Bridge Tolls says he’s found a legislator who will sponsor a bill to stop such tolls on the state level.

That could lead to a reworking of the project. Authority members have said they won’t drop any part of the plan to build two new bridges and rework Spaghetti Junction in part because it would require years of studying and planning. But Reilly says a similar project in St. Louis was revised fairly quickly.

“They did not need to do a new environmental impact study and they did not need a new record of decision,” he says. “They worked inside their record of decision. So we can model our project after what they did with the Mississippi River Bridges Project.”
We can't let this happen.

RIP: Blake Edwards

Blake Edwards, director of the original Pink Panther movies with the late Peter Sellers has died at the age of 88 following complications from pneumonia. May he rest in peace.

17th Annual SAG Awards Nominations

The 17th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards will air live across the nation on both TNT and TBS on Sunday, January 30, 2011 at 8 PM.


Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
JEFF BRIDGES / Rooster Cogburn – “TRUE GRIT” (Paramount Pictures)
ROBERT DUVALL / Felix Bush - "GET LOW” (Sony Pictures Classics)
JESSE EISENBERG / Mark Zuckerberg - "THE SOCIAL NETWORK" (Columbia Pictures)
COLIN FIRTH / King George VI - "THE KING’S SPEECH" (The Weinstein Company)
JAMES FRANCO / Aron Ralston - "127 HOURS" (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
NICOLE KIDMAN / Becca – “RABBIT HOLE” (Lionsgate)
JENNIFER LAWRENCE / Ree Dolly – “WINTER’S BONE” (Roadside Attractions)
NATALIE PORTMAN / Nina Sayers – “BLACK SWAN” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
HILARY SWANK / Betty Anne Waters – “CONVICTION” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
CHRISTIAN BALE / Dicky Eklund – “THE FIGHTER” (Paramount Pictures)
JOHN HAWKES / Teardrop – “WINTER’S BONE” (Roadside Attractions)
JEREMY RENNER / James Coughlin – “THE TOWN” (Warner Bros. Pictures)
GEOFFREY RUSH / Lionel Logue – “THE KING’S SPEECH” (The Weinstein Company)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
AMY ADAMS / Charlene Fleming – “THE FIGHTER” (Paramount Pictures)
HELENA BONHAM CARTER / Queen Elizabeth – “THE KING’S SPEECH” (The Weinstein Company)
MILA KUNIS / Lily – “BLACK SWAN” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
MELISSA LEO / Alice Ward – “THE FIGHTER” (Paramount Pictures)
HAILEE STEINFELD / Mattie Ross – “TRUE GRIT” (Paramount Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
WINONA RYDER / Beth Macintyre

THE FIGHTER (Paramount Pictures)
AMY ADAMS / Charlene Fleming
MELISSA LEO / Alice Ward
JACK MCGEE / George Ward


THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Company)
ANTHONY ANDREWS / Stanley Baldwin
JENNIFER EHLE / Myrtle Logue
COLIN FIRTH / King George VI
DEREK JACOBI / Archbishop Cosmo Lang
GEOFFREY RUSH / Lionel Logue
TIMOTHY SPALL / Winston Churchill

THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Columbia Pictures)
JESSE EISENBERG / Mark Zuckerberg
ANDREW GARFIELD / Eduardo Saverin
ARMIE HAMMER / Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss
MAX MINGHELLA / Divya Narendra
JOSH PENCE / Tyler Winklevoss

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries
AL PACINO / Jack Kevorkian – “YOU DON’T KNOW JACK” (HBO)
ÉDGAR RAMÍREZ / Ilich Ramírez Sánchez, aka ‘Carlos’ – “CARLOS” (Sundance Channel)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Television Movie or Miniseries

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
JON HAMM / Don Draper – “MAD MEN” (AMC)
HUGH LAURIE / Dr. Gregory House – “HOUSE” (FOX)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
GLENN CLOSE / Patty Hewes – “DAMAGES” (FX)
KYRA SEDGWICK / Dep. Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson – “THE CLOSER” (TNT)

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
ALEC BALDWIN / Jack Donaghy - “30 ROCK” (NBC)
CHRIS COLFER / Kurt Hummel – “GLEE” (FOX)
ED O’NEILL / Jay Pritchett – “MODERN FAMILY” (ABC)

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
EDIE FALCO / Jackie Peyton - “NURSE JACKIE” (Showtime)
TINA FEY / Liz Lemon - “30 ROCK” (NBC)
JANE LYNCH / Sue Sylvester – “GLEE” (FOX)
SOFIA VERGARA / Gloria Delgado-Pritchett – “MODERN FAMILY” (ABC)
BETTY WHITE / Elka Ostrovsky – “HOT IN CLEVELAND” (TV Land)

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
STEVE BUSCEMI / Nucky Thompson
DABNEY COLEMAN / Commodore Louis Kaestner
PAZ DE LA HUERTA / Lucy Danzinger
KELLY MACDONALD / Margaret Schroeder
GRETCHEN MOL / Gillian Darmody
VINCENT PIAZZA / Lucky Luciano
MICHAEL PITT / Jimmy Darmody
MICHAEL SHANNON / Agent Nelson Van Alden
PAUL SPARKS / Mickey Doyle
MICHAEL STUHLBARG / Arnold Rothstein
SHEA WHIGHAM / Sheriff Elias Thompson

G.W. BAILEY / Det. Lt. Provenza
RAYMOND CRUZ / Det. Julio Sanchez
TONY DENISON / Lt. Andy Flynn
ROBERT GOSSETT / Commander Taylor
COREY REYNOLDS / Sgt. David Gabriel
KYRA SEDGWICK / Dep. Chief Brenda Leigh Johnson
J.K. SIMMONS / Asst. Police Chief Will Pope
JON TENNEY / FBI Special Agent Fritz Howard

DEXTER (Showtime)
MICHAEL C. HALL / Dexter Morgan
C.S. LEE / Vince Masuka
JAMES REMAR / Harry Morgan
JULIA STILES / Lumen Pierce
LAUREN VELEZ / Lt. Maria Laguerta
DAVID ZAYAS / Sgt. Angel Batista

JOSH CHARLES / Will Gardner
ARCHIE PANJABI / Kalinda Sharma
MAKENZIE VEGA / Grace Florrick

CARA BUONO / Faye Miller
JON HAMM / Don Draper
JANUARY JONES / Betty Francis (Draper)
MATT LONG / Joey Baird
ROBERT MORSE / Bert Cooper
JESSICA PARÉ / Megan Calvet
JOHN SLATTERY / Roger Sterling
RICH SOMMER / Harry Crane
AARON STATON / Ken Cosgrove

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
SCOTT ADSIT / Pete Hornberger
ALEC BALDWIN / Jack Donaghy
TINA FEY / Liz Lemon
JANE KRAKOWSKI / Jenna Maroney
JACK MCBRAYER / Kenneth Parcell
TRACY MORGAN / Tracy Jordan

MAX ADLER / Dave Karofsky
DIANNA AGRON / Quinn Fabray
CHRIS COLFER / Kurt Hummel
JANE LYNCH / Sue Sylvester
JAYMA MAYS / Emma Pillsbury
KEVIN MCHALE / Arty Abrams
LEA MICHELE / Rachel Berry
HEATHER MORRIS / Brittany Pierce
MIKE O’MALLEY / Burt Hummel
AMBER RILEY / Mercedes
NAYA RIVERA / Santana Lopez
MARK SALLING / Noah ‘Puck’ Puckerman
HARRY SHUM JR. / Mike Chang
IQBAL THEBA / Principal Figgins

JANE LEEVES / Joy Scroggs
WENDIE MALICK / Victoria Chase
BETTY WHITE / Elka Ostrovsky

JULIE BOWEN / Claire Dunphy
TY BURRELL / Phil Dunphy
JESSE TYLER FERGUSON / Mitchell Pritchett
NOLAN GOULD / Luke Dunphy
SARAH HYLAND / Haley Dunphy
ED O’NEILL / Jay Pritchett
RICO RODRIGUEZ / Manny Delgado
SOFIA VERGARA / Gloria Delgado-Pritchett
ARIEL WINTER / Alex Dunphy

CREED BRATTON / Creed Bratton
STEVE CARELL / Michael Scott
JENNA FISCHER / Pam Beesly Halpert
KATE FLANNERY / Meredith Palmer
ED HELMS / Andy Bernard
MINDY KALING / Kelly Kapoor
ELLIE KEMPER / Erin Hannon
ANGELA KINSEY / Angela Martin
PAUL LIEBERSTEIN / Toby Flenderson
B.J. NOVAK / Ryan Howard
OSCAR NUÑEZ / Oscar Martinez
CRAIG ROBINSON / Daryll Philbin
PHYLLIS SMITH / Phyllis Lapin-Vance
RAINN WILSON / Dwight Schrute
ZACH WOODS / Gabe Lewis

Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture
GREEN ZONE (Universal Pictures)
INCEPTION (Warner Bros. Pictures)
ROBIN HOOD (Universal Pictures)

Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series

Screen Actors Guild Awards 47th Annual Life Achievement Award: Ernest Borgnine

An Essential Public Service Announcement

Don't be an idiot driver. Unless it is really important that you drive in the morning, do not attempt to do so. Freezing rain causes black ice. Black ice causes car accidents.

The more you know...

WAVE 3's storm team has an update as of 1:25 AM this morning:
1:25 AM UPDATE...
I just walked out to the parking lot downtown... a sheet of ice. Car covered... some of the heaviest freezing rain is now moving into the metro area... will continue into the early morning hour (5, 6 - 7 AM). Downtown temperature still holding at 27 degrees. Main roads that have been treated are OK (at best) and side streets and sidewalks are crazy slick! Be careful. Georgetown has reported 1.2" of snow with a temperature of 24 degrees. I asked the NWS about changing the WINTER STORM WARNING to an ICE STORM WARNING and even though the primary mode of precipitation that changing headlines at this point would complicate matters. Also pointed out that it's not going to be a long term event...should generally be over early to mid morning Thu.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Senator Evan Bayh's Senate Farewell Address

Retiring Indiana Senator Evan Bayh delivered his farewell address in the United States Senate.

RIP: Bob Feller

Bob Feller, the Hall of Fame pitcher, has died at the age of 92. May he rest in peace.

The story just broke in the past hour.

Quote of the Day

"Louisville has the highest NBA TV ratings of any non-NBA market in the nation."
--Eric Crawford, Courier-Journal columnist, December 15, 2010

Tune in to Joe Elliott's show on WGTK-970 AM at 1 PM eastern time tomorrow. They'll discuss the NBA and Louisville.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The 68th Annual Golden Globe Nominees

My predictions are in bold but the following are the nominees for the 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards. The Tourist getting three nominations--well, any nominations--is pretty shocking.

The 68th Annual Golden Globe Award Nominations
Hollywood Foreign Press Association
2011 Golden Globes
For the Year ended December 31, 2010

Best Motion Picture—Drama
Black Swan, Protozoa Pictures & Cross Creek Pictures & Phoenix; Fox Searchlight Pictures
The Fighter, Paramount Pictures and Relativity Media; Paramount Pictures and Relativity Media
Inception, Warner Bros. Pictures UK Ltd.; Warner Bros. Pictures
The King’s Speech, See-Saw Films and Bedlam Productions; The Weinstein Company
The Social Network, Columbia Pictures; Sony Pictures Releasing

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture—Drama
Halle Berry, Frankie and Alice
Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence, Winter’s Bone
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Michelle Williams, Blue Valentine

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture—Drama
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours
Ryan Gosling, Blue Valentine
Mark Wahlberg, The Fighter

Best Motion Picture—Comedy or Musical
Alice in Wonderland, Walt Disney Pictures; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Burlesque, Screen Gems; Sony Pictures Releasing
The Kids Are All Right, Antidote Films, Mandalay Vision, Gilbert Films; Focus Features
Red, di Bonaventura Pictures; Summit Entertainment
The Tourist, GK Films; Sony Pictures Releasing

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture—Comedy or Musical
Annette Benning, The Kids Are All Right
Anne Hathaway, Love and Other Drugs
Angelina Jolie, The Tourist
Julianne Moore, The Kids Are All Right
Emma Stone, Easy A

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture—Comedy or Musical
Johnny Depp, Alice in Wonderland
Johnny Depp, The Tourist
Paul Giamatti, Barney’s Version
Jake Gyllenhaal, Love and Other Drugs
Kevin Spacey, Casino Jack

Best Animated Feature Film
Despicable Me, Universal Studios, Illumination Entertainment; Universal Pictures
How to Train Your Dragon, DreamWorks Animation; Paramount Pictures
The Illusionist, Django Films, Ciné B and France 3 Cinéma; Sony Pictures Classics
Tangled, Walt Disney Animation Studios; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Toy Story 3, Disney * Pixar; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Best Foreign Language Film
Biutiful (Mexico/Spain), Menageatroz, Focus Features International; Roadside Attractions
The Concert (France), An Oï Oï Oï Productions, Les Productions Du Tresor, France 3 Cinema, Europacorp, Castel Films, Panache Productions, RTBF (Belgian Television), BIM Distrubuzione Co., Canal +, Cinecinema and France 3; The Weinstein Company
The Edge ((Kpaй) (Russia), Teleshow/Rock Films; Central Partnership (Russia)
I am Love (Lo Sono L’amore) (Italy), First Sun; Magnolia Pictures
In a Better World (Denmark), Zentropa Entertainment; Sony Pictures Classics

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture
Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King’s Speech
Mila Kunis, Black Swan
Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture
Christian Bale, The Fighter
Michael Douglas, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
Andrew Garfield, The Social Network
Jeremy Renner, The Town
Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech

Best Director—Motion Picture
Darren Arronofsky, Black Swan
David Fincher, The Social Network
Tom Hooper, The King’s Speech
Christopher Nolan, Inception
David O. Russell, The Fighter

Best Screenplay—Motion Picture
Danny Boyle and Simon Beaufoy, 127 Hours
Lisa Cholodenko and Stuart Blumberg, The Kids Are All Right
Christopher Nolan, Inception
David Seidler, The King’s Speech
Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network

Best Original Score—Motion Picture
Alexandre Desplat, The King’s Speech
Danny Elfman, Alice in Wonderland
A.R. Rahman, 127 Hours
Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, The Social Network
Hans Zimmer, Inception

Best Original Song—Motion Picture
“Bound to You,” Burlesque
Music by: Samuel Dixon
Lyrics by: Christina Aguilera, Sia Furler

“Coming Home,” Country Strong
Music & Lyrics by: Bob DiPiero, Tom Douglas, Hillary Lindsey, Troy Verges

“I See The Light,” Tangled
Music by: Alan Menken
Lyrics by: Glenn Slater

“There’s a Place for Us,” Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Music & Lyrics by: Carrie Underwood, David Hodges, Hillary Lindsey

“You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me,” Burlesque
Music & Lyrics by: Diane Warren

Best Television Series—Drama
Boardwalk Empire (HBO), Leverage, Closest to the Hole Productions, Sikelia Productions and Cold Front Productions, HBO Entertainment
Dexter (Showtime), Showtime, John Goldwyn Productions, The Colleton Company
The Good Wife (CBS), CBS Television Studios
Mad Men (AMC), Lionsgate Television
The Walking Dead (AMC), AMC

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series—Drama
Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Elizabeth Moss, Mad Men
Piper Perabo, Covert Affairs
Katey Sagal, Sons of Anarchy
Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series—Drama
Steve Buscemi, Boardwalk Empire
Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Michael C. Hall, Dexter
Jon Hamm, Mad Men
Hugh Laurie, House

Best Television Series—Comedy or Musical
30 Rock (NBC), Universal Media Studios in association with Broadway Video and Little
Stranger Inc.
The Big Bang Theory (CBS), Warner Bros. Television
The Big C (Showtime), Showtime, Sony Pictures Television, Perkins Street Productions, Farm Kid, Original Film
Glee (FOX), Ryan Murphy Television, Twentieth Century Fox Television
Modern Family (ABC), Twentieth Century Fox Television
Nurse Jackie (Showtime), Showtime, Lionsgate Television, Jackson Group Entertainment, Madison Grain Elevator, Inc. & Delong Lumber, Caryn Mandabach Productions

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series—Comedy or Musical
Toni Collette, United States of Tara
Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Tina Fey, 30 Rock
Laura Linney, The Big C
Lea Michelle, Glee

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series—Comedy or Musical
Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock
Steve Carell, The Office
Thomas Jane, Hung
Matthew Morrison, Glee
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory

Best Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Carlos (Sundance Channel), Film En Stock and Egoli Tossell Film
The Pacific (HBO), Playtone and DreamWorks in association with HBO Films
Pillars of the Earth (Starz), Starz, Tandem Communications, Muse Entertainment Scott Free Films
Temple Grandin (HBO), A Ruby Films, Gerson Saines Production, HBO Films
You Don’t Know Jack (HBO), Bee Holder, Cine Mosaic and Levinson/Fontana Productions, HBO Films

Best Performance by an Actress in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Hayley Atwell, Pillars of the Earth
Claire Danes, Temple Grandin
Judi Dench, Return to Cranford
Romola Garai, Emma
Jennifer Love Hewitt, The Client List

Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Idris Elba, Luther
Ian McShane, Pillars of the Earth
Al Pacino, You Don’t Know Jack
Dennis Quaid, The Special Relationship
Edgar Ramirez, Carlos

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Hope Davis, The Special Relationship
Jane Lynch, Glee
Kelly MacDonald, Boardwalk Empire
Julia Stiles, Dexter
Sofia Vergara, Modern Family

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television
Scott Caan, Hawaii 5-O
Chris Colfer, Glee
Chris Noth, The Good Wife
Eric Stone Street, Modern Family
David Strathairn, Temple Grandin

Another Winter Storm Warning...

The current tracking has the storm starting tomorrow morning and lasting into Thursday. With mixtures of both ice and snow, possible accumulation of 3-5 inches, this thing could very well be brutal.

Cliff Lee returns to Philadelphia Phillies

Who saw this coming? MLB Trade Rumors has been following the Cliff Lee sweepstakes. Lee was traded away during last year's off-season so the Phillies would be able to sign the ever so dominant Roy Halladay. Next season, Lee will be back.
The wait is over. In a surprising development that leaves two top American League teams empty-handed, Cliff Lee has agreed to sign a five-year, $120MM deal with the Phillies. The contract also includes a reachable vesting option for a sixth year.'s T.R. Sullivan first reported the deal,'s Jerry Crasnick reported on the terms and vesting option (on Twitter). Agent Darek Braunecker represents the left-hander.

After months of rumors that suggested he'd sign with the highest bidder, Lee turned down tens of millions in guaranteed money to sign in Philadelphia. Crasnick hears the Yankees offered a deal that guaranteed Lee $132MM over six years, plus a $16MM player option for a seventh year (Twitter link).  At $148MM guaranteed, that was the highest bid.  The Rangers offered $138MM over six years, and their proposal included a vesting option that could have brought the value of the deal to $161MM, according to Yahoo's Tim Brown (Twitter links).

Almost exactly a year after they traded Lee for Roy Halladay, the lefty is back in Philadelphia. Like Halladay, who signed an extension that delayed his free agency, Lee opted to play for the Phillies instead of looking for the biggest contract possible. The Phils could have a historically good rotation if Lee, Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels stay healthy.
The Phillies are still the favorites to win the NL East and a possible return to the NLCS and the World Series in 2011.

Monday, December 13, 2010

AFI Names Top Ten 2010 Movies

The American Film Institute has released their top ten movies in 2010:
Black Swan
The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
127 Hours
The Social Network
The Town
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone
This might be the first year ever that I've seen every thing on their list or will see every thing on their list.Both Black Swan and The Fighter open in Louisville on Friday while True Grit won't open for another week and a half.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Metrodome collapses, exclusive footage

This is just unbelievable.

Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown pens open letter

Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown has penned an open letter with a tax petition to President Barack Obama.
Dear Mr. President,

With our economy struggling, our working families hurting, and our deficit crisis worsening every year, we need to take action to create jobs, bolster the middle class, and bring our budget into balance.

But the agreement you’ve struck with Senate Republicans is a bad deal. It doubles down on a failed strategy of tax cuts for the super-wealthy that would explode our deficit without strengthening our economy. It’s too high a price to pay for the support of those who have continually refused to put the middle class first.

Instead of giving in to obstruction, we should fight it. I am willing to stay in session as long as it takes to overcome a filibuster and extend both unemployment benefits for jobless Americans and tax cuts for the middle class. If our colleagues on the other side of the aisle want to spend their holidays refusing to help working families struggling to enjoy a Christmas of their own unless their wealthy friends get another bailout, let them.

Mr. President, I know that you share my desire to pass good economic policies that help working families. But a deal that also includes bad policies that will worsen our deficit and fail to help our economy falls short. By standing our ground and standing strong for the middle class, we can do better. And I urge you to do just that.


Sherrod Brown
U.S. Senator, Ohio

Evan Bayh not running for Indiana Governor

My condolences to the state of Indiana as Senator Evan Bayh, a former governor of Indiana, has opted against running in 2012.
Indiana Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh has decided against a run for governor in 2012, robbing Democrats of their top recruit in the Hoosier State.

"After careful consideration, I have concluded that the appropriate decision is not to be a candidate for governor of Indiana in 2012," Bayh said in a statement released to the Fix. ""The principle reason for my decision is the welfare of my twin sons."[...]

Bayh, who will turn 55 on the day after Christmas, will leave the Senate at the end of the year after two terms defined, in large part, by his never-realized ambitions on the national stage.

Bayh was a finalist in the vice presidential sweepstakes in 2004 and 2008 but was passed over both times. He weighed a run for president in his own right in the 2008 cycle but backed away in December of 2006.

The Metrodome needs a band-aid

Some horrible and shocking news from Minnesota today. The Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome needs a band-aid.

When asked for comment, Brett Favre replied, "If the game were to be played today, I wouldn't be playing. The streak lives on for another day."

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Winter Storm Warning...

Kevin Harned has the latest updates over at the WAVE 3 Weather blog. The post has an update from 2 PM this afternoon:
* National Weather Service Louisville plans to issue Winter Weather Advisory from 1AM Sunday to 1PM Monday.
* Highest winds look to be between 30 - 40 MPH Sunday night & Monday morning.
* Wind Chill values will range below zero early Monday, possibly early Tuesday.

Evan Bayh to bid farewell on Wednesday

Senator Evan Bayh, the retiring junior senator of Indiana, will deliver his official farewell addresss on Wednesday at 10 AM.

Quote of the Day

"Here's why I should pay more taxes than I do. The US pays the lowest income taxes in the industrialized world. The cuts that Bush put in were irresponsible and have spiraled us into debt. I would gladly pay more because I want to be strong and don't want to live in a gated community with armed guards like rich people in Mexico or Russia. 35% tax for me is not more than 17% for someone making 30k a year. The strain is greater on the 30k person. I just won't have more in the bank which does nothing for the economy. The rich don't create jobs with that extra money, they save it. Also a person making more money is benefiting more from the society so why not pay more. It takes a giant ego to think "It's my money. I made with no one's help!" I made my money because of people buying movie tix and the amazing cast and crews I work with. If they're strong I'm strong..."
--Adam McKay, Filmmaker, December 10, 2010

Well said, Adam, well said.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Republicans exploit 9/11 again...

The Republicans are really getting on my nerves. Here it is, 2010, and a dead musician can be pardoned by the state of Florida, yet gay and lesbians are not allowed to serve openly in the military because Republicans don't want them to do so.

Now, comes word of the 9/11 First Responders bill being defeated in the Senate because the Republicans want tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans before funding the first responders that put their own life at risk in order to save the lives of others when terrorists attacked America. Shame on them.
Senate Democrats failed Thursday to win a procedural vote to open debate on a bill that would provide medical benefits and compensation for emergency workers who were first on the scene of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The motion for cloture, or to begin debate, needed 60 votes to pass due to a Republican filibuster, but fell short at 57-42 in favor.

While supporters said they would try to bring the bill up again, either on its own or as part of other legislation to be considered, the vote Thursday jeopardized the measure's chances for approval in the final weeks of the current congressional session.

The House previously passed the bill on a mostly partisan 268-160 vote.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg reacted to Thursday's result by calling it "a tragic example of partisan politics trumping patriotism."

"I urge Senate Republicans to reconsider their wrong-headed political strategy and allow the bill to come to the floor for a vote," Bloomberg said in a statement.

Republicans complained that the $7.4 billion price tag was too high, while Democrats said the government had an obligation to help the first responders to the deadliest terrorism attack in U.S. history.
How in the fucking gell is $7.4 billion too high when Republicans don't have a single fucking problem with handing out tax cuts worth more than that to the wealthiest Americans? Give me a fucking break. Stop acting like the partisan assholes that you are. Start acting like a human.

I can't support a Republican ever again with partisan stunts like this.

Yarmuth on Ford announcement

Congressman John Yarmuth remarks on today's Ford announcement:
Today, Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-3) issued the following statement regarding Ford’s announcement of a new $600 million investment to re-tool its Louisville Assembly Plant and hire hundreds of new workers to build the next-generation Ford Escape.

“I was proud to stand with Ford and the UAW as we worked to secure the federal resources that helped make this day possible and I am prouder still to continue our efforts to create jobs and revitalize manufacturing in Louisville.” said Congressman Yarmuth. “Today’s announcement is a clear sign that Ford is in Louisville to stay and will play a critical part in the growth of our local economy for years to come.”

In September of 2009, Ford secured a $5.9 billion loan as part of the federal government’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. This program provides funding to help auto companies produce cars in the U.S. that increase fuel economy standards. In 2008, Congressman Yarmuth fought for continued funding for this program to encourage retooling of existing plants to produce the next generation of vehicles and supported Ford’s efforts to re-tool LAP.

The Loan Program was created by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which Congressman Yarmuth supported during his first year in Congress.

People of faith mocked...

Your proof can be found here.

There were no dinosaurs on the ark according to the materials I have read.

House Democrats REJECT tax cut deal

Major props to the Democratic House Caucus! We cannot allow the Republicans to campaign against deficit spending while calling to extend tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans.

Per Ben at Politico:
House Democratic caucus, a Hill staffer emails, just voted to reject the tax deal.

Props to Bernie Sanders...and John Yarmuth

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders released a statement with regards to the tax cut deal proposed by President Obama and Congressional Republicans:
“In my view, it is a moral outrage that at a time when this country has a $13.8 trillion national debt, a collapsing middle class and a growing gap between the very rich and everybody else that the Republicans would deny extended unemployment benefits to 2 million workers who are desperately struggling to pay their bills and maintain their dignity. It is also beyond comprehension that the Republicans would hold hostage the entire middle class of this country so that millionaires and billionaires would receive huge tax breaks. In my view, that is not what this country is about and it is not what the American people want to see. Our job is to save the disappearing middle class, not lower taxes for people who are already extraordinarily wealthy and increase the national debt that our children and grandchildren would have to pay.

“The immediate political task in front of us is to rally the American people so that in the next several weeks we can find at least a few Republicans who will join us in saying no to increasing the deficit by giving tax breaks to the wealthy and no to holding the unemployed and the middle class hostage.

“I believe that we have the American people on our side on this issue. My office, and I come from a small state, has received more than 600 calls today, 99 percent of them in opposition to this so-called compromise that the president negotiated with the Republicans.

“I will do everything in my power to stand up for the American middle class and defeat this agreement.”
Kentucky Congressman John Yarmuth had some comments about the deal:
Based on what has been announced so far, Rep. John Yarmuth, D-3rd District said he would vote against it.

“At a time when so many American families are struggling, it is morally and economically indefensible to give millionaires a tax break that is more than most Louisvillians make in a year,” the Kentuckian said in a statement.
At a time when so many Republicans campaigned AGAINST DEFICIT SPENDING, how in the hell do they campaign for the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans?!?

Tax Cut Quote of the Day

"Biggest economic crisis since the great depression and now even Obama wants tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires. #stoptheinsanity"
--Rainn Wilson, Twitter, December 8, 2010

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Yarmuth goes after Sarah Palin

It's nice to see Congressman John Yarmuth going after Sarah Palin. Similarly, I'm glad to see that he is voting against the extension of Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. It's funny that all these Republicans are complaining about deficit spending but when it comes tp tax cuts for the wealthy, they seem to forget about their stance on deficit spending. But anyway, here is an excerpt of his post:
The American people don't believe politicians. They don't believe business leaders, or Hollywood celebrities, or athletes or other supposed role models. And they certainly don't believe the news media. We have a dangerous dearth of credibility in the United States these days, and when no one has the confidence of a majority of Americans, there is fertile ground for con artists and demagogues.

Sarah Palin understands this. Every time she refers to the "lamestream media" -- which is virtually every time she speaks publicly -- she is engaged in the only tactic that gives her credibility with any audience: she lowers the bar for her ideas (or more accurately, for her rhetoric). Rush Limbaugh understands it as well. If you destroy the credibility of those people or institutions that could undermine your own, you create an opportunity for your voice, however irresponsible or misleading it may be, to gain traction.

And not incidentally, in today's American society, even a small plurality audience can be a ticket to fame and fortune.

The "lamestream media" strategy would be laughable if it weren't so effective. Just what media are Sarah Palin and others talking about? Is she talking about NBC, ABC and CBS, but not FOX? All are owned by large corporations whose interests are not aligned with Palin's political opponents. Is she talking about the New York Times and the Washington Post, or even the Wall Street Journal, which is owned by her FOX News boss? Of course it doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is that people who are attracted to Palin and Limbaugh understand that any media disagreeing with them are lame.

When your voice contradicts reality and truth, the only way to create space for it is to discredit reality and truth. Palin, Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and others have made an art form of convincing far too many Americans to suspend their disbelief, and they have severely damaged the ability of our country to have serious discussions about serious challenges.

And now, arguably the most serious challenge facing our country is figuring out how to have those discussions.

Senators propose SHIELD act

I didn't even know about this until Scottish comic book writer Mark Millar tweeted a link to The Hill earlier today.
Sens. John Ensign (R-Nev.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Scott Brown (R-Mass.) introduced a bill Thursday aimed at stopping WikiLeaks by making it illegal to publish the names of military or intelligence community informants.

Ensign accused WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and his "cronies" of hindering America's war efforts and creating a "hit list" for U.S. enemies by outing intelligence sources.

“Our sources are bravely risking their lives when they stand up against the tyranny of al Qaeda, the Taliban and murderous regimes, and I simply will not stand idly by as they become death targets because of Julian Assange," Ensign said. "Let me be very clear, WikiLeaks is not a whistleblower website and Assange is not a journalist.”[...]

The Securing Human Intelligence and Enforcing Lawful Dissemination Act (SHIELD) would give the government the flexibility to pursue Assange for allegedly outing confidential U.S. informants. Brown said the law would prevent anyone from compromising national security in a similar manner, while Lieberman said its passage was essential to restore the international diplomatic community's faith in the U.S.

"Our foreign representatives, allies and intelligence sources must have the clear assurance that their lives will not be endangered by those with opposing agendas, whether they are Americans or not, and our government must make it clear that revealing the identities of these individuals will not be tolerated," Lieberman said.

Earlier this week, Lieberman reportedly convinced to stop hosting WikiLeaks, forcing the website to relocate to Switzerland.

Amazon denied government pressure influenced the decision, which they attributed to WikiLeaks's violating the company's terms of service and putting innocent lives at risk.

"It’s clear that WikiLeaks doesn’t own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content," Amazon said in a statement. "Further, it is not credible that the extraordinary volume of 250,000 classified documents that WikiLeaks is publishing could have been carefully redacted in such a way as to ensure that they weren’t putting innocent people in jeopardy."
I support all efforts to prevent the links of classified documents. WE don't need more Americans endangered by these leaks.

Whoever leaked them committed treason and should be dealt with accordingly.

Meyer to leave Yarmuth office

Marty Meyer will be leaving John Yarmuth"s congressional office and will soon be working for Metro Councilman-elect David Yates.

John Lennon: A Working Class Hero

I try and repost this just about every year.

Image hosted by
The above photo should be appropriately credited to Christinne Muschi/Reuters. The stamps were issued in 1995 on the 15th anniversary.

This was originally posted in 2005 on the 25th anniversary.

For many Beatle fans this week, December 8th has a special meaning to us. It's the anniversary of the date we lost John Lennon. We all have a special way of remembering his life. For me, it's the playing of his music. The music of love, peace, and understanding as Lennon's colleague, Paul McCartney, said during The Beatles Anthology. As the title of this post as well as a recent music collection suggests, the late John Lennon was a working class hero.

I've been a Beatles fan since 1995 when The Beatles Anthology first aired on ABC. I got my 1st guitar in 1999 as a result.

The Herald-Leader aired an article from the Associated Press on the last hours of Lennon's life and how those around him reacted to the news. There was Alan Weiss (then-news producer at WABC TV), Dr. Stephen Lynn (then-ER doctor at Roosevelt Hospital), Officers Pete Cullen and Steve Spiro (Worked the night shift in Manhattan's Upper West Side). I was reading this article on Sunday in 2005. After reading it a few years ago, I started to write this post because of how busy I know I wwas going to be that day with two classes and a volunteer meeting for political activists.
The cops from the 20th Precinct hold a reunion every two years. Cullen comes up from his home in Naples, Fla., to hang out with the old gang. They don't talk about the Lennon shooting.

Weiss, after getting the scoop of his career, wound up leaving the ultra-competitive news business. "The major events of my professional career all had to do with other people's tragedy," he said. He now produces a syndicated show with teens reporting the news for teens.

Lynn is still working at Roosevelt Hospital, still the director of the department. As Dec. 8 approaches each year, he gets phone calls from reporters, from fans, from kids born years after Lennon's murder.
Later on today, I'll get my guitar out for a bit and play some of the usuals. If I wasn't working, I would be playing playing my Beatles albums which will, in past cases, ultimately lead up to the playing of the only John Lennon solo album I have...and that album is played today as usual.

Then there's me playing the guitar as I always do on this date featuring the selected playlist of "In My Life," "Let it Be," and "Imagine." As well as any Lennon song I have the chords and tabs for like "Give Peace a Chance," "Whatever Gets You Through the Night," and "Instant Karma!" Like John Lennon, I play rhythm guitar even though Paul McCartney is my favorite Beatle.

The Chicago Tribune pays tribute to the late John Lennon. Here's a small excerpt from that article:
McCartney wrote many of the band's most enduring melodies, but Lennon supplied more of the mission statements: "Turn off your mind, relax and float downstream" (from 1966's "Tomorrow Never Knows"), "All You Need Is Love," "You say you want a revolution...," "Come Together."
John Lennon was shot down when he was recording a new album. He was almost 40 years and 2 months old. His death meant that the Beatles would never reunite. Although they did "reunite" digitally through "Free as a Bird" and "Real Love," it just was not the same. The closest that they came to actually reuniting was when George Harrison organized The Concert for Bangladesh. Unfortunately, John wouldn't do it since George wouldn't let Yoko have a part (I'm no Yoko fan as I still blame her for the Beatles breakup). Then Paul cancelled.

John's death sparked a number of tribute songs from Paul McCartney's "Here Today" to Elton John's "Empty Garden." However, George's tribute to John Lennon titled "All Those Years Ago" featured all three surviving Beatles as well as Linda McCartney and Denny Laine. The 1981 recording was featured on Somewhere in England and was the only studio recording in the 1980's to feature the three surviving Beatles.

Do you have any special memories or plans for today?

John may no longer be with us but his legacy will live on forever. Rest in Peace, John.

I posted this on what would have been his 66th birthday in 2005.

John Lennon
October 9, 1940 - December 8, 1980

May John Lennon rest in peace.

Some songs come to mind right now.

The Beatles - "In My Life"
There are places I'll remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I've loved them all

John Lennon - "Imagine"
The Beatles - "Let it Be"
Paul McCartney - "Here Today"
George Harrison - "All Those Years Ago" (Paul and Ringo were featured on this song)

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Expansion Era Committee votes Pat Gillick into Baseball Hall of Fame

Baseball Executive Pat Gillick has been named as the sole candidate voted in by the Expansion Era Committee into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Pat Gillick, who built three World Series champions and has served baseball for nearly 50 years, has been elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame by the Expansion Era Committee, it was announced today.

Gillick was the lone candidate to garner the necessary 75% of votes cast by the 16-member Expansion Era Committee, which considered a ballot of eight former players, three executives and one manager whose contributions to the game were most significant from 1973 through the present. The Expansion Era Committee held meetings on Sunday in Orlando, site of the baseball winter meetings.

Gillick becomes the 32nd executive to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame and just the fourth individual elected whose career has been defined nearly exclusively as a team architect, joining Ed Barrow, Branch Rickey and George Weiss in Cooperstown. Gillick will be joined by any electees who emerge from the Baseball Writers' Association of America voting, which will be announced on January 5, 2011.[...]

Gillick presently serves as senior adviser to the Philadelphia Phillies and has spent nearly 50 years in Major League Baseball, with 27 seasons as a major league general manager. Gillick, who built playoff teams with the Blue Jays, Orioles, Mariners and Phillies, began his major league career with the Houston Colt .45s/Astros from 1963-73, before joining the New York Yankees as scouting director from 1974-76. Gillick joined the expansion Toronto Blue Jays in 1977, building five division winners from 1985-93 and consecutive World Series championships in 1992-93. In three seasons with Baltimore from 1996-98, the Orioles made two postseason appearances. In four seasons shaping the Mariners from 2000-2003, the Mariners won 90 games each season, including an American League record 116 in 2001, with two postseason appearances. In building the Phillies from 2006-2008, Philadelphia won the NL East twice and the 2008 World Series. Beginning in 1983, teams under Gillick's direction as general manager posted winning records in 20 of 22 seasons.[...]

The Results of the Expansion Era Ballot (12 votes needed for election): Pat Gillick (13 votes, 81.25%); Marvin Miller (11 votes, 68.75%); Dave Concepcion (8 votes, 50%); Ted Simmons, Vida Blue, Steve Garvey, Ron Guidry, Tommy John, Billy Martin, Al Oliver, Rusty Staub and George Steinbrenner each received less than eight votes.
Congrats to Pat Gillick.

Similarly, Bill Conlin has been named as the 2011 winner of the J.G. Taylor Spink Award.

Freaks and Geeks reunion set

Freaks and Geeks will have a reunion soon.
Judd Apatow, executive producer on the series created and co-exec produced by Paul Feig, said over the weekend that the reunion was coming together, and the folks at the Paley Center affirmed that the gathering for a Q&A with cast and producers was on the table. The first official announcement about PaleyFest 2011, aka the 28th William S. Paley Television Festival, is scheduled for next week.

"Freaks and Geeks" featured Linda Cardellini, John Francis Daley, James Franco, Jason Segel, Seth Rogen, Martin Starr, Samm Levine and Busy Phillips. The series lasted one season, with its last original episode airing in 2000. The series made a Paley Center appearance back when it was on the air and when the Paley Center was called the Museum of Television and Radio.

Creationist Theme Park Quote of the Day

"Developers in Kentucky plan on opening a creationist theme park. Yeah. When asked what the creationist theme park would look like, developers said it's still evolving."
-Conan O'Brien in his monologue, Conan, December 6, 2010

RIP: Elizabeth Edwards

The sad news today is that Elizabeth Edwards has lost her battle with cancer and is dead at the age of 61. May she rest in peace.

I can't do the obituary justice so please click here.

The family released a statement following her death:
Statement of the Edwards Family
Elizabeth Anania Edwards, mother, author, advocate died today at her home in Chapel Hill, surrounded by her family.

Today we have lost the comfort of Elizabeth's presence but she remains the heart of this family.

We love her and will never know anyone more inspiring or full of life.

On behalf of Elizabeth we want to express our gratitude to the thousands of kindred spirits who moved and inspired her along the way. Your support and prayers touched our entire family.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wade Edwards Foundation which benefits the Wade Edwards Learning Lab at Details to follow about services.

Pearl Harbor Day

(The below speech is what President Franklin Delano Roosevelt delievered to a joint session of Congress the date after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Sadly, many of those veterans are dying everyday. Soon we will not have a single Pearl Harbor veteran alive--and that is saddening. As Lee Greenwood once said:
And I'm proud to be an American
Where at least I know I'm free
And I won't forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I gladly stand up
next to you and defend her still today
Cause there ain't no doubt I love this land
G-d bless the USA)

Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its Government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific. Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in Oahu, the Japanese Ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to the Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or armed attack.

It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time the Japanese Government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian Islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. Very many American lives have been lost. In addition American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.

Yesterday the Japanese Government also launched an attack against Malaya. Last night Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong. Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam. Last night Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands. Last night the Japanese attacked Wake Island. This morning the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.

As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.

Always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us. No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.

I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.

With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounded determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.

I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December seventh, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire.
--President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to a Joint Congress, December 8, 1941

Monday, December 06, 2010

Thank you, Bernie Sanders!

Thank G-d for Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT):

Here's more from ThinkProgress:
The White House just announced that it has settled on the details of the deal it’s been cooking up with Congressional Republicans over the coming expiration of the Bush tax cuts. In return for a two-year extension of all the Bush tax cuts — including those for the richest two percent of Americans and those on capital gains and dividends — currently expired unemployment benefits will be extended for 13 months, there will be a two percent reduction in payroll taxes for one year, and both the expanded Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit enacted in the 2009 Recovery Act will be retained.

The deal also includes reinstating the currently expired estate tax in a way proposed by Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) and Jon Kyl (R-AZ) — 35 percent with a $5 million exemption (which means that $5 million can be passed on tax free). President Obama had proposed permanently setting the estate tax at the 2009 level of 45 percent with a $3.5 million exemption. Under current law, the estate tax comes back next year at a 55 percent rate with a $1 million exemption.

“I’m not willing to let working families across this country become collateral damage for political warfare here in Washington,” Obama said in a statement. “Sympathetic as I am to those who prefer a fight over compromise, as much as the political wisdom may dictate fighting over solving problems, it would be the wrong thing to do.”

Coming soon to Kentucky!

It's been 16 years since I've seen the movie, too.

Disney releases Blu-ray/DVD details for Secretariat

The Blu-ray/DVD details were released by Disney for the recent film, Secretariat:
Secretariat DVD and Blu-Ray Special Features

• Heart of A Champion
• Choreographing the Races
• A Director's Inspiration: A Conversation with The Real Penny Chenery
• Audio commentary by director Randall Wallace
• 7 Deleted Scenes with optional audio commentary by director Randall Wallace
• Secretariat multi-angle simulation
• Music video - AJ Michalka "It's Who You Are"

• Heart of A Champion
• 3 Deleted Scenes with optional audio commentary by director Randall Wallace
• Music video - AJ Michalka "It's Who You Are"
No word yet on pricing.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Kentucky Football accepts BBVA Compass Bowl bid

It was announced today that the University of Kentucky Wildcats football team will be playing the Pittsburgh Panthers in the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham, Alabama on January 8, 2011 at noon eastern time.

The bid, an historic fifth consecutive for the football team, comes following an interesting season for the team with so many close games that, had they gone the other way, would have seen Kentucky playing yesterday for the SEC Championship title but it was not to be.

It should be noted that the basketball team plays the same day in Georgia at 4 PM on ESPNU.

Excerpts from the university's press release:
The University of Kentucky football team will be making a school-record fifth-consecutive postseason appearance as the Wildcats have accepted a bid to play in the BBVA Compass Bowl against the University of Pittsburgh.

The game will be on Sat. Jan. 8 at noon EST (11 a.m. CST in Birmingham) at Legion Field. It is the only bowl game of the day and will be nationally televised by ESPN. It will be the first time that Kentucky and Pitt have played in football.

"As we continue to grow our football program at Kentucky, it is our privilege to be invited to the BBVA Compass Bowl," said Mitch Barnhart, UK Director of Athletics. "We are excited to play in Birmingham, the home of the Southeastern Conference office and a historic stadium at Legion Field, and have the opportunity for our players, coaches, families and fans to enjoy a city that has a great football tradition and a place in our nation's history. We look forward to this event and the challenge of playing an outstanding team from the University of Pittsburgh."

Kentucky is extending its school-record bowl streak to five-straight years, one of only 29 teams in the country that have gone to postseason play every year since the 2006 season. UK played in the Music City Bowl in 2006, 2007 and 2009 and the AutoZone Liberty Bowl following the 2008 season. The Wildcats won three of those matchups, defeating Clemson in '06, Florida State in '07 and East Carolina in the Liberty Bowl. UK lost a rematch to Clemson in '09.

Overall, this will be the 15th bowl appearance in school history, with Kentucky carrying an 8-6 record in postseason play. It will be UK's first trip to the BBVA Compass Bowl, although the Wildcats have made two postseason appearances in Birmingham. UK lost to West Virginia, 20-16, in the 1983 Hall of Fame Bowl and defeated Wisconsin, 20-19, in the 1984 Hall of Fame Bowl.

Kentucky has a 6-6 record this season, marking the first time since 1909-13 that the Wildcats have notched at least six wins in five consecutive seasons. Highlights included a season-opening Governor's Cup win at Louisville and a thrilling victory against South Carolina, marking the biggest comeback in school history, as UK rallied from a 28-10 halftime deficit for a 31-28 win.[...]

The appearance in the BBVA Compass Bowl will mark milestones, both past and present, for Kentucky Coach Joker Phillips. This is the first time in school history that a UK head coach has gone to a bowl game in his first season. Phillips will be returning to a familiar site, as he played for the 1983 and '84 teams that played their bowl games in Legion Field.

"It will be a huge challenge and an exciting time for our football program to play in the BBVA Compass Bowl," Phillips said. "I've had a chance to watch Pitt numerous times. Their running attack is very strong and their quarterback (Tino Sunseri) has completed more than 65 percent of his passes.
From BBVA Compass:
The Wildcats (6-6, 2-6 SEC) will take on the Pittsburgh Panthers of the BIG EAST Conference in the BBVA Compass Bowl, an ERT owned and operated event, on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011 at Birmingham's historic Legion Field. The game will be televised by ESPN at 11 a.m. CT.

"We look forward to hosting the University of Kentucky in Birmingham for their fifth consecutive bowl game and their first-ever matchup with the Pitt Panthers," said Mark Meadows, Executive Director of the BBVA Compass Bowl. "We know the players and fans from both teams will enjoy the great hospitality and all of the bowl week events and activities our bowl committee has planned."[...]

Tickets to the 2010 BBVA Compass Bowl will be available at 56 BBVA Compass branch locations throughout North and Central Alabama including those in Birmingham, Huntsville and Montgomery starting Monday, December 6th. Tickets are also available online at or by calling 800-590-3981. Tickets are priced at $50 each for sideline seating and $30 each for corner seats.

"At BBVA Compass, we want to provide fans an opportunity to participate in what they love," said Chris Ward, BBVA Compass east region retail executive. "We also know from listening to our customers that convenience is one of the most important aspects they want in their banking relationship. So, we are very pleased that for the first time in the history of this bowl fans will have the added convenience of purchasing tickets at BBVA Compass branch locations throughout North and Central Alabama."

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Senate Republicans stop Unemployment Benefits

The Senate Republicans forced the unemployment benefits to expire Tuesday night. It's very sad because those people recieving the benefits depended on them as they could not get any work at all. Not everyone is as good off as they would like to be. The Republicans don't realize this.

I served in Americorps for a year and I was unable to secure any kind of a job in Chicago following my one year. Because I did VISTA and it's considered to be a volunteer position, I was not eligible for any kind of unemployment benefits while I tried to secure a job. Trust me, if I was I would have been better off financially until I got my feet back on the ground. Don't think for a minute that I enjoyed using food stamps because I certainly did not. I was glad that the government offers that as social welfare because otherwise, I would have starved to death. My family is middle class--they certainly did not have to money to financially support me outside of paying rent money. I'm very thankful for that. Hell, when one does Americorps, nine times out of ten, the money is gone before you even see it on the paycheck.

Back to what I am saying, Americans don't just save the benefit money, they put it right back into the economy. Thank G-d for that. Otherwise, more people would lose jobs as a result of decreased spending. Unfortunately, that is about to become a reality because of the Senate Republicans.
Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., took to the Senate floor Tuesday night to urge his colleagues to extend the benefits, but to no avail.

"Now it is time to govern. Now it is time to act. Now it is time to do what we have always done in a situation like this – to pass a promptly and timely extension of unemployment insurance benefits," Reed said. "Acting now is the right thing to do, the responsible thing to do, the wise economic thing to do."

He argued that the jobless benefits serve as an economic stimulus that is more effective than tax cuts for the wealthy, one of the Republicans' priorities during the lame-duck Congress.

But Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., objected to the Democrats' bid to move forward with the jobless benefits bill.

Brown said Democrats should have allowed more time to work on the bill, rather than taking a week-long break for the Thanksgiving holiday and spending the past few legislative days working on a food safety bill.[...]

The consequences of ending the extended benefits aren't entirely clear though most agree it could hurt the recovery. The Labor Department estimates that 635,000 people could lose all benefits by Dec. 11, with more than 1.6 million losing them by Christmas. The ripple effect, some argue, could be devastating.[...]

The unemployment bill, along with an extension of the Bush tax cuts, is among the hottest issues in the lame-duck session of Congress that began Monday. Some lawmakers argue that the nation simply can't afford the extension bill, which would cost the country another $12 billion, adding to a deficit that tops $13.7 trillion. The tax-cut extension could also cost $3.7 trillion over the next decade.

Unemployment insurance has for many decades provided about 26 weeks of benefits, but the current Congress has extended the benefit to 99 weeks in four separate bills.

"There will be no safety net in terms of greater job loss," Conti said. "If the program is not reauthorized by the end of the year, 2 million will prematurely lose benefits. It could lead to great homelessness. The ripple effect would be devastating."[...]

Though the country is coming out of its longest recession since the Great Depression, more than 14 million people are still unemployed or underemployed.

For each of those 14 million, the issue of unemployment benefits is extremely personal.[...]

A bill to extend unemployment benefits fell short, by 17 votes, of the two-thirds majority needed under a special rule to pass earlier this month. Growing concerns over adding to the deficit have left some members of Congress hesitant about the bill, which is estimated to cost $5 billion a month.

The real tragedy of failing to extend benefits would be the loss of an estimated $5 billion a month in spending that comes from the long-term unemployed, says Heidi Sierholz, an economist and labor market columnist for nonpartisan economic think tank Economic Policy Institute based in Washington, D.C.

"That's $5 billion that's yanked out of the economy every month," Sierholz says. "Each month, almost 1 percent of the GDP will be taken out of the economy if we don't extend benefits, and that's going to be a massive drag on growth."
A tragedy, indeed.