In the final days before the Iowa caucuses, Rick Santorum has surged into contention as a Republican presidential candidate, moving past last week's sweetheart Newt Gingrich in the latest CNN-Time poll.
Campaigning in Iowa, Santorum stayed on message for conservatives, saying it's the "birthright" of every child to have "a mom and dad". That's opposed to two dads or two moms, for those of you who haven't been following the homophobic rhetoric Santorum has peddled for years.
And if you haven't been following along, just for fun, Google "Santorum" and click on the top result.
The big pre-Christmas retail excitement was the launch of a new – retro – pair of Nike Air Jordans, the Air Jordan XI. Shoppers were so excited, in fact, they were literally tearing the doors off their hinges and trampling little kids in order to ... be like Mike.
Got thinking today, what's it going to take to make Herman Cain quit? He's like one of those inflatable dolls (no, not THAT kind of inflatable doll!) that you punch and it bounces back up again and again.
Today's gem was: "I've got to think about my family first. That is absolutely my No. 1 priority."
That prompted a trip to Google, where it was
revealed that he and Gloria have been married since ... 1968. Think
they've got a prenup? Not a chance! Think she's gonna get a decent
settlement? Hahahaha!!! It may start with 9-9-9, but it will have a lot of zeroes after that.
At this point, with a majority of American women going on local and
national news programs to say they too have had sex with Republican
presidential candidate Herman Cain, it may be time for the Cain campaign
to rethink its strategy.
For starters, the candidate needs a new pair of sunglasses. And a long black leather coat. And a theme song.
Texas Representative Ted Poe (R) has proposed legislation that would require that 10 percent of military equipment being returned from Iraq be sent to communities along the U.S.-Mexico border for use in border security operations.
The proposal has drawn criticism from Mayor John Cook of El Paso, who has vigorously disputed assertions that his city, which sits across the border from Ciudad Juárez, is affected by the same violence that has plagued northern Mexico.
“I would invite them to come to El Paso and we can look at the inventory of equipment that’s coming back from Iraq and they can tell me where they’d want to locate this,” Cook said. “To me, it’s just showing a whole lot of ignorance.”
The mayor said moving war zone equipment to the border would send the wrong signal to Mexico and potentially damage the robust symbiotic economic relationship between the two countries.
In case you're not following along, in Wednesday's presidential debate, Republican candidate Rick Perry forgot the third of three government agencies he had previously said it was absolutely vital to downsize. "Commerce, Education, and what's the third one ... let's see ..." he said. [The third one was Energy.]
Perry later shrugged off the slip, suggesting it might even humanize him in the eyes of voters. The cyborg Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney is undoubtedly jealous.
Herman Cain, whom we can presume will not become known as The Foreign Policy President, if he is victorious on November 6, 2012, responded to an interviewer's question about a potential military threat from China by noting that China "is trying to develop nuclear capability."
He did not, however, mention any role that scientists from Ubeki-beki-beki-stan-stan might be playing in China's efforts to acquire nuclear weapons technology. Perhaps that's classified.
Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain responded, finally, to accusations that he sexually harassed several women while he headed the National Restaurant Association (the other NRA) in the late 1990s. Cain's response, however, was less than emphatic. He said to reporters, "As I have been beat upon all day on this, I'm trying to think back to, well what could it have been?" He added, "I am unaware of any settlement. I hope it wasn't for much, because I didn't do anything."
Although I don't doubt there is inspiration to be found there, I'm not a huge fan of the TEDx phenomenon, which I think cheapens the (superb) TED brand.
And so this comic pokes a bit of fun at the latest iteration of TEDx – TEDxTohoku – which purports to develop consciousness of Japan's March 11, 2011 tsunami and earthquake (and nuclear reactor meltdowns), and to help define the role of "the 3.11 generation".
As a regular cartoonist for the Tucson Sentinel, I keep an eye on events in that city, and Saturday a local version of the 'Occupy Wall Street' movement was held in downtown Armory Park. Around 500 demonstrators participated, and 53 citations were issued for "Remaining in City Park After Hours" [violation of violation of Tucson City Code 21-3(7)(3)].
Inspiration for this cartoon came courtesy of Representative Michelle Bachmann, whose desperate pledge to "finish the border fence" (a pledge that presumably comes with an "if elected" caveat – I don't imagine she feels strongly enough about the issue that we'll see her out in the desert operating a bulldozer once she's knocked out of the presidential race) reminded me that there are millions who would have been very happy to boost the demonstrator numbers at 'Occupy Tucson'.
In Japan, students can "get on the escalator" to good jobs by winning admission to middle schools or high schools associated with prestigious universities, from which they are relatively certain to be recruited into the ranks of the country's top companies and government ministries.
And a nuclear physics degree, of course, is probably less of a sure thing than it was before March 11, 2011.
TV evangelist Robert Jeffress doubled down Sunday on his characterization of Mormonism – the religion practiced by Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman – as a cult. In the past, Jeffress has said that Islam is a false religion and that [non sequitur alert] Oprah Winfrey is doing the work of Satan.
One can only hope Republican Texas governor Rick Perry drove one of the final nails into the coffin containing his presidential aspirations by suggesting that a U.S. troop presence is desirable in Mexico.
Certainly it's easy to imagine most Mexicans hoping so, as Perry also managed to say, "I think it is very important for us to work with them to keep that country from failing."
Governor Perry clearly hasn't yet been briefed on the national economic situation.
Vladimir Putin’s plans to run for the presidency in 2012 will return the current Russian prime minister to the post he held from 2000-2008, before handing the reins to handpicked successor Dmitry Medvedev. It is likely Medvedev will return to the prime minister position he held during the second half of Putin's presidential term. The job swap, which most observers think will be approved by Russian voters, likely will see the less-than-dynamic duo of Putin and Medvedev rule Russia from 2000-2024.
On the one hand, Texas Governor Rick Perry has presided over more executions than any governor in U.S. history. Good.
On the other hand, Governor Perry has repeatedly reaffirmed his support for a program that grants an in-state tuition discount to the children of illegal immigrants and for opposing the building of a fence along the U.S border with Mexico. Bad.
Who are you really, Rick Perry? Republican America wants to know.
Saturday’sannouncementof Vladimir Putin’s plans to run for the presidency in 2012 was widely expected and will return the current Russian prime minister to the post he held from 2000-2008, before handing the reins to handpicked successor Dmitry Medvedev. It is likely Medvedev will return to the prime minister position he held during the second half of Putin's presidential term. The job swap, which most observers think will be approved by Russian voters, likely will see the less-than-dynamic duo of Putin and Medvedev rule Russia from 2000-2024.
Saturday’s announcement of Vladimir Putin’s plans to run for the presidency in 2012 was widely expected and will return the current Russian prime minister to the post he held from 2000-2008, before handing the reins to handpicked successor Dmitry Medvedev. It is likely Medvedev will return to the prime minister position he held during the second half of Putin's presidential term. The job swap, which most observers think will be approved by Russian voters, likely will see the less-than-dynamic duo of Putin and Medvedev rule Russia from 2000-2024.
For nearly a decade, immigrant-friendly Arizona sent officials to classrooms across the state to monitor teachers' ability to speak "proper" English. A federal investigation of possible civil rights violations prompted the state to change its policy, which many felt was a form of discrimination.
Explaining that you can't make an omelet without breaking a few eggs, Mao Zedong said, "A revolution is not a dinner party."
But following the refusal Wednesday by death row prisoner Lawrence Russell Brewer to eat the elaborate "last meal" he had requested, Texas corrections officials have decided to end the practice of granting prisoners last meal requests.
Meaning Texas will no longer be breaking any eggs at the request of inmates scheduled for execution.
Following the ridiculous and outrageous detention and strip search a week ago of Shoshana Hebshi and two other dark-skinned travelers who were flying to Detroit, it's easy to imagine Osama bin Laden laughing heartily from his watery grave off the coast of Pakistan.
As a native New Yorker, with family and friends who live in the city, I have steered clear of 9/11 on this blog. I had 9/11 fatigue by around the 10th time I saw the television replays of the planes crashing into the World Trade Center from the safety of my hotel room in Shanghai that day. I couldn't watch any of the 9/11 movies or TV specials, and at this point I think there's not much more to be said.
Except that yesterday I thought about the victims of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, and the 2004 attack on a school in Beslan, Russia. And the train bombings in Madrid in 2004. And the nightclub bombing in Bali in 2002. And the terrorist attacks in Mumbai in 2008. And the thousands of attacks that have killed tens of thousands of Iraqis over the past ten years.
Who mourns these deaths, except the friends and families of the victims? Who mourns the many, many thousands who have been wounded and maimed?
9/11 is not just a day for Americans. Nearly 400 people from other countries lost their lives on that day as well, including 66 Britons, 47 Dominicans, 41 Indians, 28 Koreans, 24 Japanese, 24 Canadians and many others, including from Switzerland, Ghana, Jamaica, China, Peru, New Zealand, Mexico, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Portugal, Brazil, France and El Salvador.
And since that day, civilians have been killed by terrorists on every day of the year, year after year.
Thought for the day ...
[A short note: The above image is made from a photograph taken by Michael Yon. I didn't have a chance to ask Michael for permission to use the mage before posting, but an email is in his inbox and I hope he'll give me his blessing. Michael's story of the photograph is here, and I'm very sorry to say that the little girl – Farah – in Major Mark Bieger's arms did not make it. One of the many thousands of victims of global terrorism.]
In the Republican presidential candidate debate the other night, Rick Perry was asked about the 234 death row inmates whose executions he'd approved during his tenure as Texas governor ... "more than any other governor in modern times".
Perry was unable to respond immediately due to the huge round of applause the crowd gave to the news that a frontrunner for President of the United States has been such a success at delivering what he termed "the ultimate justice".
Jon Stewart said it best and simplest in the above linked clip: "Holy fuckballs."
Monday Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda named former prime ministers Yukio Hatoyama, Naoto Kan and Tsutomu Hata 'supreme advisers' to the ruling Democratic Party of Japan. Not an auspicious start to his prime ministership, really.
The federal government is demanding that New York City change its 250,900 iconic street signs from the all-caps style used for more than a century to ones that capitalize only the first letters. At $110 per sign, it will cost the state $27.6 million, according to city officials.